Architecture / Style / Exotic Revival


  • 1835-1890 (McAlester)
  • 1830-1850, 1920-1930 (Blumenson)


Reflecting a romantic interest in archeology and historic styles, these styles borrowing elements from “exotic” cultures. The Egyptian Revival is probably the best known from this group. Identifiable by massive columns that resemble a bundle of stalks tied together and bulging at the top, and smooth monolithic exterior finish. Other features include battered walls edged with roll or rope-like moldings, tall straight-headed windows with inclined jambs, and a deep cavetto or gorge-and roll cornice. Generally roofs are flat and a smooth wall finish provides a monumental effect reminiscent of pylons or gateways to Egyptian temples.

Moorish and Turkish architectural traditions also influenced design in America.

Ferndale, Michigan, 2007.


Leading Examples

Grove Street Cemetery Entrance, New Haven, Connecticut(Blumenson, 29).

Ada Theater, Boise, Idaho (Blumenson, 29).


Sources Cited

Also see Architecture / Style index.