David Linley, who specializes in creating fine furniture in a modern classical idiom, surveys classicism, from its origins in Ancient Greece and its rebirth in Renaissance Italy to its Golden Age in 18th-century France, England and America. He traces the gradual spread of classical ideas through Europe in the centuries after Palladia and the eventual translation of the themes of form, proportion and ornament into furniture of the highest quality. The influence of architects such as Kent, Holland and the Adam brothers, who helped to define the classical furniture traditions, is assessed and the work of designers such as Chippendale, Hepplewhite and Sheraton is suitably celebrated. A pattern book of classical furniture designs is provided in a Directory of Furniture which covers the evolution of styles in chairs and tables, cabinets and screens, sofas and daybeds, and demonstrates that even in virtuoso displays of marquetry, carving and inlay an ideal balance was maintained between elegance and practicality. In a final chapter on arrangement and display, Linley explores ways of linking old and new design, and shows how classical furniture can be combined with modern - both sympathetically and with character - in the design and layout of present-day interiors.