The Garden Guide

Book: Fragments on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, 1816
Chapter: Fragment XxvII. Gardens Of Ashridge.

Fifty years of garden design

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After almost half a century passed in the parks and gardens of England, and, during much of that time, having been professionally consulted on their improvement, I am fully convinced that fashion has frequently misled taste, by confounding the scenery of art and nature. And while I have acceded to the combination of two words, landscape and gardening, yet they are as distinct objects as the picture and its frame. The scenery of nature, called landscape, and that of a garden, are as different as their uses; one is to please the eye, the other is for the comfort and occupation of man: one is wild, and may be adapted to animals in the wildest state of nature; while the other is appropriated to man in the highest state of civilization and refinement. We therefore find, that although painters may despise gardens as subjects for the pencil, yet poets, philosophers, and statesmen, have always enjoyed and described the pure delights of garden scenery.