born on april 13 in 1743 and died on july 4 in 1808, thomas jefferson helped shape the new american nation and also shaped some of the country's most distinguished buildings.
jefferson thought classical architecture was the perfect model for democratic architecture and the american republic. it was jefferson's idea to model america's famous capitol building after the roman pantheon with a circular domed rotunda.
jefferson modeled his own home, monticello, after villa capra rotunda by the italian renaissance architect, palladio.
his design for the virginia statehouse was based on a roman temple in nîmes, a building he was thrilled to see when he was our ambassador to france.
his design for the university of virginia was based on classical pavilions which used different classical orders as models for the students at virginia.
jefferson thought that classicism promoted virtue. hopefully virtue will soon be restored to the white house with the changes in november. but for today i'll just focus on being grateful for the contributions of thomas jefferson to so many aspects of our nation's development.
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