The volume of material relating to country houses, and their architecture, landscapes, families, collections, archives, and related areas is immense.
The following reading lists do not aspire to be comprehensive. They have been made by various curators drawing on their experience and reading in particular fields. They have a selective and subjective quality to them; in some instances are very extensive, in others they are shorter lists that reflect an earlier stage of involvement with a particular heading. Some lists have been broken down into convenient subject headings, and these reflect research interests, popular topics of enquiry, or a sudden rash of publications in the area. These are not meant to be definitive headings, and the fact that one book might belong in more than one section, or that some titles appear in more than one section, only serves to emphasise the interdisciplinary nature of studying the country house.
It is almost impossible to keep abreast of all new publications in either book or article form, consequently reading lists can quickly become dated, but attempts will be made from time to time to update them, particularly with titles that have been of significant value to curators in their researches, or which are important publications in their own right.
These titles reflect varying degrees of scholarship, and range from the academic monograph to more popular considerations of the subject. It is worth bearing in mind that books which are light in written content can often contain a wealth of important visual information in high quality illustrations.
These reading lists are intended as initial guides for students and people with a general interest in the country house. In the digital age researchers will always be able to find other starting points, or directions to resources and bibliographies via the internet.
There are reading lists for the following headings: