The Garden Guide

Book: History of Garden Design and Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 4: British Gardens (1100-1830)

Origin of English style of garden design

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576. Our own opinion inclines to that of G. Mason, without doubting that examples of wild scenery, with walks, have existed and been admired, not only long before the time of Tasso, both in Italy and in this country, but from the earliest ages. In fact, it is impossible to doubt that beautiful scenery was admired by minds of refinement in all times and places, and that the wealthy would frequently endeavour to create it. Semiram's (if such a person over existed) imitated nature 2000 years before Nero, and Nero nearly as long a period before Pope or Shenstone. The general progress of ideas in matters of taste and refinement, in England, required the creation of such a style, at the time it became national; and the highly cultivated state of the country, the accounts of Chinese gardens, and the descriptions of the poets, would all conspire to its production.