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Sunday, 9 June 2013

Capability Brown

Lancelot "Capability" Brown (1715-83) was an architect and landscape gardener, who was noted for planning a naturalistic type of garden for the great houses of England with vistas of trees, lakes and flower-beds. He earned his nickname from his  saying, when called in to consult on the new laying out of a gentleman’s grounds, “I see great capability of improvement here.”


Brown introduced various changes to the design of gardens. The grass and trees of the park were brought up to the walls of the country houses. The fruit and vegetable garden was placed out of sight and the introduction of grass slopes and trees visible from the windows were a testimony to people’s growing delight in natural scenery.

He established a purely English style of garden lay-out, using simple artifices to produce natural effects, as in the laid-out gardens at Blenheim, Kew, Stowe, Warwick Castle, and others. 

He designed over 170 parks, many of which still endure.

Brown died on February 6, 1783, in Hertford Street, London, on the doorstep of his daughter Bridget, who had married the architect Henry Holland.

Brown's popularity declined rapidly after his death, because his work was seen as a feeble imitation of wild nature. During the nineteenth century he was widely criticized, but during the twentieth century his popularity returned as a result of a favorable account of his talent in Marie-Luise Gothein's History of Garden Art.

Source Wikipedia

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