The Repton Gazette and Brown Advisor

300 Frequently Asked Questions about Capability Brown, and a further 200 about Humphry Repton

Author: The Brown Advisor (Page 2 of 34)

1835: was William Cowper an influence?

Oofy here: Editorial: Cowper. Deal with it.

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1834: was the Reverend William Gilpin an influence?

‘When in Sense and Sensibility Marianne Dashwood lamented that “every body pretends to feel and tries to describe with the taste and elegance of him who first defined what picturesque beauty was”, the ‘him’ in question was the Reverend William Gilpin.

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1858: why the cross-references?

Mr R.S. has written from Devon to ask our editor why Repton cross-references from red book to red book

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1833: was Jane Austen an influence?

‘Many theorists have advanced evidence for an association between Humphry Repton and Jane Austen.

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1830: what is Repton’s reputation?

Oofy here: Editorial: Time for candour. Point is. Reppers had no class. Stood at the wrong end of m’ punt. Cambridge man. Tryin’ too hard. Same as Jane Austen.

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1840: was Repton a jobbing gardener?

The editor being out of town, the Type-Setter is called on to address the correspondence that daily reaches the Gazette. The question that falls to him now is this: if in each of his landscapes Repton tried to design something unique, does he thereby lose our respect, for being a jack-of-all-trades with no integrity, prepared to turn his hand to anything that would make him a bob or two?

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1849: will this be the last question about Repton’s red books?

Oofy here: Editorial: time to talk horses. Bought Gi-gi at the Stowe Fair. Crossed the gipsy’s palm with silver and she said the horse was mine. Couldn’t run faster if she had 5 legs. Matter of fact. You can say that about her. Fact is. If you were a horse and had 5 legs you’d spend all your time thinking which hoof to go down on next. Never get anywhere.

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1829: Boundaries?

‘”The park wall must be continued around the farm for the safety of the woods, which I observed were shamefully mutilated by the natives, & also for the preservation of game.”[1]

Queen Victoria copied the sea wall at Norris when she bought Osborne House, next door.

Queen Victoria copied the sea wall at Norris when she bought Osborne House, next door.

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1828: Planting?

West Cowes from the esplanade

West Cowes from the esplanade

‘“On this principle they have proceeded too hastily at Plas Newydd in grubbing hedges & pulling down cottages, for the sake of showing an extent of open lawn in a direction where plantations ought to be encouraged to screen a bleak country,

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1827: Approaches?

‘The approaches at Norris Castle are symmetrical and have a certain overriding geometry. There is nothing else like this in Repton’s oeuvre, hence they are unlikely to have been designed by him.

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Page 2 of 34

The Brown Advisor©2015

By John Phibbs