The Repton Gazette and Brown Advisor

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

Tag: Longleat

289: What is the difference between a house and a hall?

Ms K has been in touch from Leeds over a matter of propriety. She wonders if Dukes always live in palaces, and if there is a pecking order in the names of houses as there is in the orders of the nobility.

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214: Did Brown really dislike deer?

In my last (note 213), I offered to my companions at the Tatler’s Waste-bin a list of all those landscapes of that fine man and lord-lieutenant of Huntingdon, Capability Brown, for which I had records of an active deer park.

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175: Did Brown use exotics in parkland? London Plane

London Plane (Platanus x hispanica) was a tree that very much came into its own in Brown’s day. At the beginning of his century, Thomas Hamilton had to confess that ‘tho they are now comeing in Request here, … as I have no kind of Experience of them, I shall be Silent’.

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156: Are Brown’s ‘cultural landscapes’?

At a genial evening just past in the upstairs rooms at the Tatler’s Waste-Bin, conversation turned to the idea of ‘cultural landscape’ and the fond attachment people form to particular places.

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92: Isn’t Beech the tree most associated with Brown?

Monsieur B of Orléans has been in touch again, this time with a question about Copper Beech – did Capability Brown use it, and if so in what circumstances?

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33: What is Contrast?

‘All the rules of gardening are reducible to three heads: – the contrasts, the management of surprises, and the concealment of the bounds’.

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57: Did Brown design cock-pits?

An armoured cockerel, impregnable, but unable to do much damage either

An armoured cockerel, impregnable, but unable to do much damage either

Mr M from Cromer has asked if Capability Brown, excellent man that he was and energetic, had been so egregious as to take a hand in the landscaping of Wothorpe, Burghley’s second house, with its cock-pit, which remained in use though the Brownian era.

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91: How did Brown find out about clover?

Clover improves the mix

Clover improves the mix

That marvelous magus of mystery and magic, Capability Brown, added white clover to his grass seed when making good after earthworking, as at Longleat and Stowe in the 1750’s, at Chatsworth in 1763, at Sandbeck in 1774, at Milton Abbey in 1776 and, very likely, whenever called upon to resow grassland.

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47: How can water stop deer?

Preparing to wharf at Langley

Preparing to wharf at Langley

I have read a note from Dr E of Fife asking how lakes can work as any kind of a boundary in a deer park, since deer can swim. Dear Dr E, it’s all in the way the lake edge is constructed – wharfed or beached.

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26: Was Brown a Whig?

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.

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The Brown Advisor©2015

By John Phibbs