Connections and networks count for more in this world than political principle

Connections and networks count for more in this world than political principle

The Brown Advisoris not in any sense a dating agent, however Mr L. of Bromsgrove, has asked me to put him in touch with Mrs D. of Hampshire with the offer of assistance for her planned tour of Worcestershire, and I have conceded.When one thinks of that gardening Zorro , Capability Brown, was it not through just such connections that he found his client-base? Look for example at Lord Shelburne. Besides his wives (Haynes and Trentham), their sisters and aunts bristle with Brown landscapes: (Longleat, Blenheim, Cole Green, Stoke Park, Ampthill, Holland Park, Warwick Castle). Then there’s his brother at Llewani. Now, wonder, if you think his clients were of no political colour, why so few of the Portland and Rockingham Whigs employed Brown, and why so many of the Chatham Whigs did.

Nonetheless I’m not sure myself how much of anything Brown was, I’m not sure that his landscapes were so tailored for Whig Grandees as is generally supposed, and he had plenty of satisfied Tory clients. These connections however become such a plate of spaghetti that one can never get to the end of them without getting the bolognese all over one’s face: everybody who was anybody in the 18th century was somebody’s cousin, and being somebody’s relative, when one thinks of Lord Shelburne and his brother, is hardly a guarantee of friendship or political like-mindedness.