The Garden Guide

Book: Observations on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, 1803
Chapter: Chapter XIII. Ancient Mansions

Corsham House, Wiltshire, Red Book

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THE following extract from the Red Book of CORSHAM, may serve to exemplify the impropriety of improving the grounds without previous attention to the style, character, and situation of the house. At the time CORSHAM HOUSE [figs. 109 and 110] was erected, instead of the modern houses now placed in the centre of parks, distant from every other habitation, it was the glory and pride of an English baron to live in, or near, the town or village which conferred its title on his palace, and often on himself. Nor was the proximity of the village attended with any inconvenience, so long as the house was disjoined from it by ample court-yards, or massive gates; some of its fronts might look into a garden, lawn, or park, where the neighbours could not intrude. Yet even these views, in some instances, were confined, formal, and dull, by lofty walls and clipped hedges.