The Repton Gazette and Brown Advisor

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

Tag: Plas Newydd

1848: Was Repton at Mount Edgcumbe?

A gloss from the Type-Setter: the Editor having succumbed to the lure of the hunting field, it falls to the Type-Setter to endeavour to resolve another question of attribution.

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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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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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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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1825: Pleasure grounds?

Oofy here: Editorial: Tell me if it’s the same for you: when I hear a fellow speaking. What they say makes perfect sense. Beautifully expressed. A treat. When I think of saying anything m’self, I get plenty of phrases alright. Jumbled up though. Can’t work out which comes first.

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1824: Why there?

‘If the Bathing House at Norris Castle is in his character and style, we might then ask what Humphry Repton might have made of its location and the location of the other buildings on the estate.

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1822: What about Gothic?

A gloss from the Type-Setter: those to whom I am a stranger, and there will be many, may not know that I have a fear of flies, and hence a great aversion to the outside. It is to this trait – a craven giving way to a childish fear – I will admit as much  – that our Editor alluded in note 1821. There is an irresistible allure in the editorial role that I have undertaken. It brings Humphry Repton’s  landscapes to life through the medium of his sketches, without the trouble of seeing them for themselves, or exposing myself to the open air.

The Professor produces his notes of on the Gothic (he prefers ‘Sondergothik’ – that late form of Gothic peculiar to Central Europe which speaks to the romantic, fantastical and sometimes overwrought soul of the Czech nationalist),

‘Humphry Repton was perfectly happy to work with the inspired idiosyncracies of Gothic design that James Wyatt provided for Norris Castle.

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170: Was Lapidge any good?

Captain Ken reminds me that he can find nothing to interest him in the careers of Capability Brown’s associates, such as Samuel Lapidge and William Ireland.

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The Brown Advisor©2015

By John Phibbs