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The English Garden: A Social History
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The English Garden: A Social History

3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  9 ratings  ·  4 reviews
Gardening is not only about plants; it is also about lifestyles, money, and class. Among the rich, gardens are symbols of social and economic success; among the poor, they are an aid to survival. Most historians have concentrated on the development of garden styles and fashions, but the whole story cannot be told without reference to social and economic conditions. Charles ...more
Hardcover, 284 pages
Published February 1st 2004 by David R. Godine Publisher (first published October 30th 2003)
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Mostly text, on heavy, gorgeous slick white paper. A few illustrations, in just the right places. Lots of primary sources quote, a well researched but definitely readable book. (One does feel badly for all the people prior to 1830 having to keep their lawns trimmed with a scythe.)
Heartwarming stories also include a garden! Joy, rest, peace. Enjoy.
A good social history, just what it says. I only gave it 2 stars just because it is almost more useful as a reference book than a pleasure read, or even a quotable source. It gives a broad overview of English gardens, and a context that they exist in even today. It is interesting information, so I did like what I learned from it, and I'm glad I've perused it. Perhaps I just didn't have the time to get knee-deep in history - I needed paper material. Given more time and a relaxed purpose I might s ...more
David R.  Godine
"An iceberg of a book. What we see on the page is supported by a great body of research underneath. This is what gives the book its sweeping style and confidence. . . Written with verve, dash, wit, and style."
– Anna Pavord, Independent

"An evocation of those happy garden-lovers who had the wealth to live out their dreams in gardens they made in sunny places. . . Exceptionally well-written and deeply researched . . . a tale of romance and horticultural obsession."
– Fred Whitsey, Daily Telegraph
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