The Garden Guide

Book: Sketches and Hints on Landscape Gardening, 1795
Chapter: Chapter 6: On on the ancient style of gardening; Of symmetry and uniformity

The change in gardening taste

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From the prodigious difference of taste in gardening betwixt the last and the present century, it seems, at first sight, almost impossible to lay down any fixed principles; but, on duly considering the subject, it will be found that in this instance, as well as in many others, mankind are apt to fly from one extreme to the other; thus, because straight lines, and highly finished and correspondent parts prevailed in the ancient style, some modern improvers have mistaken crookedness for the line of beauty, and slovenly carelessness for natural ease; they call every species of regularity formal, and, with the hackneyed assertion, that "nature abhors a straight line" they fatigue the eye with continual curvatures.