The Garden Guide

Book: Fragments on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, 1816
Chapter: Fragment Xxxiv. Extracted From The Report Of Endsleigh, A Cottage On The Banks Of The Tamar, In Devonshire, By Permission Of His Grace The Duke Of Bedford. Situation And Character.

River Tamar Bridge

Previous - Next

If a substantial bridge were necessary or expedient, no person would be so competent to construct it, as my scientific and experienced friend, Mr. John Rennie, who has been consulted on the subject; but I shall beg leave to make some observations, first, on the uses of a bridge; and, next, consider its effect on the scenery. The wood opposite being now annexed to Endsleigh, access is required to it; but, if there were no other expedient, I should doubt the accommodation being equivalent to the difficulty and expense of such a bridge as might be passable at all seasons, requiring, at each end, an embankment, and arches, on dry ground, above the level of the highest winter floods. This would be necessary, if it were a public road; but, on the contrary, it would be a private bridge, seldom used, and might be dispensed with during floods; therefore, such a bridge is not absolutely necessary. With respect to its effect on the scenery, it would present an object totally at variance with that calm sequestered retreat which forms the striking characteristic of Endsleigh: since a great bridge announces a great road, and a great road destroys all solitude, both real and imaginary, there is, also, another objection to a conspicuous bridge in the situation proposed.