The Repton Gazette and Brown Advisor

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

Tag: Wrest (Page 1 of 2)

281: Was Brown asking for trouble?

Mr Honey comes in spinning like a top – I have seldom seen such irritability in a man – and flings onto our table first one issue then another then another of The Spectator – a journal with which I feel myself to be closely associated. Indeed it is one in which I take a nigh-on paternal interest.  Each of these issues has within it another attack on the landscapes of Capability Brown.

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215: Who were the surveyors?

It sometimes happens that I overlook the introduction of a person to my wider acquaintance – not from any desire to keep that person to myself, but simply because he, or she, plays such a central role in my life that I have assumed that my acquaintances were all familiar with her, or him.

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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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209: Was Brown a conservative?

In a typically roistering effusion, that Red Clydesider and North Briton, the Ha-ha Hero, has challenged me to say what the apolitical Capability Brown, great man of the soil as he was, would have thought about ‘Blue Labour’, a recent, and at first sight unlikely, political fusion between the conservative politician and theorist, Edmund Burke, and socialism.

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227: and Weir Cascades?

The Kiddington Cascade

The Kiddington Cascade

One of the cascades at Wrest

One of the cascades at Wrest

You are right to press this question, Mr L, for Capability Brown, a sensible man, does also seem to have used weirs to create changes in water level.

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224: What do you know about Brown’s cascades?

The estimable Mr L of the Barbican, London, writes in search of some understanding of the different types of cascade used by everybody’s idea of the perfect place-maker, Capability Brown, in the course of his career.

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205: Was Brown a man of mystery?

I referred in my note 29 to the aversion that the wonder-gardener Capability Brown felt towards ‘shewing a road’ and I judged that his aversion sprang from the desire to disconnect the components, and thus to induce an air of reverie, of dream, en fin, of mystery, into his landscapes.

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207: Why did Brown work for Bute?

Mrs P has also asked for any insight that the Brown Advisor may have into the feeling that Capability Brown might have had for one of his most faithful and talented clients, that most hated of men, Lord Bute.

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122: Did Brown get on with architects?

Mr M is curious to know how a landscape gardener like Capability Brown will have got along with architects, supposing they were employed at the same time, and has written from London to ask which of the two would rule the roost.

05-Drawing-by-Nicholson

John Carr is very likely to have been involved with Scampston, but the house still looked like Brown’s handiwork.

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141: Quack? Squawk? Growl?

Mrs F has contacted me from Kenilworth to ask whether Capability Brown designed menageries.

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The Brown Advisor©2015

By John Phibbs