This book may enable the architecturally-minded visitor to Cambridge—who has more leisure than can be afforded in a brief inspection—to realise the value of the Town and University for illustrating the sequence of styles in English architecture; for which purpose, the series of thirty-one Plates and Descriptions of subjects from Cambridge has been augmented by an Introduction dealing with England as a whole. In this, again, subjects from Cambridge have been used for the most part, though no excuse should be required for the frequent reference to Ely Cathedral; and only by its inclusion with Cambridge can Gothic architecture, as a whole, be adequately explained.
The examples have been selected as typical of the more important aspects of architectural style, without consideration of the inclusion of all the Colleges; the only explanation that need be offered for the omission of Magdalene and Sidney Sussex. A more solid objection might be maintained to the omission of one of the timber-framed domestic buildings in the Town; but these buildings show rather a phase of construction than of style, belonging to a type which was widely prevalent and unvarying in essentials.
There have been so many books on Cambridge that I may, perhaps, be excused for not mentioning any of them except Willis and Clark's great work, and the late J. W. Clark's A Concise Guide to the Town and University of Cambridge, now in its eleventh edition; to these, and to the former in particular, I have been much indebted.