Stourhead

We went over the hill by Alfred’s Tower to see the gardens at Stourhead, but at noon there were so many people that we retreated and returned in the early evening when the crowds had gone to enjoy the Virgilian walk round the lake.   The first view across the lake was picture perfect:-

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The Temple of Flora, first to be completed:-

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The sleeping Ariadne in the grotto with a quotation from Pope:-

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The cottage orné:-

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The Pantheon prominently at the end of the lake:-

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The temple of Apollo inspired by Baalbec:-

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If one averts one’s eyes from the virulent rhododendra and tries to forget the monkey puzzles and later pines, then it is almost possible to reconstruct the mood of meditative neoclassical reflection which inspired Henry Hoare II (‘Henry the Magnificent’) to commission Henry Flitcroft to build these temples in his garden.

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3 thoughts on “Stourhead

  1. feildsara says:

    This was my childhood stomping ground. Each decade of my life has been marked by an outing to Stourhead: picnics in the first decade, with boyfriends in the second, p
    picnics (again!) with small children in the third … and now with my mother in a wheelchair. In all seasons and at key moments it has punctuated my life… as gardens can. Good photos Charles!

  2. A lovely post, thank you. As ever, your photographs are a delight. But will you please return and go into the house which is a comparable joy? Fine paintings ( Richard Wilson, Poussin, Michael Dahl, Wootton), good sculptures ( Le Sueur, Rysbrack terracotta modelli ) and, even better, great Chippendale furniture – the only collection that can rival Harewood.

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