Essays on Landscape Gardening, and on uniting picturesque effect with rural scenery: containing directions for laying out and improving the grounds connected with a country residence
London: Printed by S and R. Bentley for J. Taylor, 1825 [text watermarked 1824-1825, plates watermarked 1825]. Quarto. (12 3/4 x 10 inches). Half-title, uncut. 6 aquatint plates (3 hand-coloured, 3 printed in sepia [2 of these with overlays]).
Original paper-covered boards, paper title label to backstrip, green morocco backed box, spine in six compartments with raised bands, ruled in gilt on either side of each band, lettered in the second compartment, the others with a repeat decoration in gilt.
A fine, unsophisticated copy of a beautifully illustrated work on the art of landscape gardening as practiced in England at the start of the 19th century.
In the preface to the present work, Morris acknowledges his inspiration to have been the works of Humphry Repton, Uvedale Price, William Gilpin and to a lesser extent William Shenstone, William Mason, Richard Payne Knight and Thomas Whately. Taking the "instructive hints" from these disparate sources, Morris here offers essays on eight aspects that need to be considered when laying out an English country garden and estate, together with six plates that further illustrate his points. As in the works of Repton, two of the plates contain overlays showing the landscape before and after Morris's improvements. Morris, a plantsman and surveyor approaches his subject from a more detailed and practical point of view than his illustrious predecessors. For example, where Repton had suggested a hillside be moved and trees planted, Morris suggests a similar scheme but also lists the trees and shrubs which would be suitable. Given this attention to horticultural detail, it is unsurprising that Morris's other works included Flora Conspicua; a selection of the most ornamental flowering, hardy, exotic and indigenous trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants, for embellishing flower-gardens and pleasure-grounds (London, 1826) and The Botanist's Manual. A catalogue of hardy, exotic, and indigenous plants, according to their respective months of flowering (London, 1824).
Abbey Life 40.