Anecdotes of Painting in England: With Some Account of the Principal Artists - Vol. 3

By Horace Walpole | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER XXIII.

ON MODERN GARDENING. 1

"THE GLORY OF LEBANON SHALL COME UNTO THEE, THE FIR-TREE, AND THE PINE, AND THE BOX TOGETHER, TO BEAUTIFY THE PLACE OF MY SANCTUARY; AND I WILL MAKE THE PLACE OF MY FEET GLORIOUS."—Isaiah lx. 13.

GARDENING was probably one of the first arts that succeeded to that of building houses, and naturally attended property and individual possession. Culinary, and afterwards medicinal herbs, were the objects of every head of a family; it became convenient to have them within reach, without seeking them at random in woods, in meadows, and on mountains, as often as they were wanted. When the earth ceased to furnish spontaneously all these primitive luxuries, and culture became requisite, separate enclosures for rearing herbs grew expedient. Fruits were in the same predicament, and those most in use or that demand attention, must have entered into and extended the domestic enclosure. The good man Noah, we are told, planted a vineyard, drank of the wine and was drunken, and everybody knows the consequences. Thus we acquired kitchen-gardens, orchards, and vineyards. I am apprised that the prototype of all these sorts was the garden of Eden; but as that paradise was a good deal larger than any we read of afterwards, being enclosed by the rivers Pison, Gihon, Hiddekel, and Euphrates, as every tree that was pleasant to the sight and good for food grew in it, and as two other trees were likewise found there, of which not a slip or sucker remains, it does not belong to the present discussion. After the fall no man living was suffered to enter into the garden; and the poverty and necessities of our first ancestors hardly allowed them time to make

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Essai sur l'Art des Jardins Modernes, par M. Horace Walpole, traduit en François, par M. le Due de Nivernois en 1784. Imprimé à Strawberry-hill, par T. Kirgate, 1785, 4to.—D.

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