Author: Dudley Dodd
About the Book:
A beautifully illustrated history of the world famous landscape garden at Stourhead, created by generations of the Hoare banking dynasty.
The Palladian house of Stourhead, in Wiltshire, occupies a plateau above the confluence of three valleys. When you cross the south lawn and descend the tree-hung slopes, you glimpse a lake adorned with classical temples. Continue and you will find an allegorical grotto; a gothick hideaway; a Pantheon of demi-gods and, on high, a deserted temple to Apollo. To the west Alfred's Tower commands views over three counties, a gaunt landmark to English monarchy and patriotism.
This is how in Georgian times Henry Hoare – known as Henry the Magnificent – would have explored the garden he designed. Generations of the Hoare family, bankers who combined service with enlightened patronage and philanthropy, have developed and cultivated the garden at Stourhead, and for many its breathtaking vistas are paradise.
Dudley Dodd charts the owners of Stourhead and the history of the landscape, house and art collection. He describes how flights of folly, individual flair, taste and careful stewardship have nurtured a national treasure, which is among the finest English landscape gardens and, since 1946, a jewel of The National Trust. The stunning new pictures by the renowned photographer Marianne Majerus provide an up to date record of this enduring Elysium.
About the Author:
Dudley Dodd visited Stourhead for the first time in 1973. While serving with the National Trust he wrote guidebooks of its houses in the South West and has subsequently contributed articles to scholarly periodicals. He edited The Letters of Henry Hoare 1760–1781 and collaborated with Simon Swynfen Jervis on Roman Splendour, English Arcadia, a study of the Sixtus Cabinet, the pietre dure masterpiece at Stourhead.