Humphry Repton and the Pocketbook Picturesque Cover Image
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Humphry Repton and the Pocketbook Picturesque
Humphry Repton and the Pocketbook Picturesque

Author(s): Stephen Daniels
Subject(s): Theoretical Linguistics, Applied Linguistics, Studies of Literature, 19th Century, Philology, British Literature
Published by: Wydawnictwa Uniwersytetu Warszawskiego
Keywords: Humphry Repton; pocketbooks; landscape gardening; picturesque
Summary/Abstract: The aim of the article is to examine one the most successful pocketbooks of the period, "The Polite Repository, or Pocket Companion", illustrated by designs by Humphry Repton, of places he was commissioned to improve. The illustrations for "The Polite Repository" display the repertoire of Repton’s art, the social range of properties, including aristocratic palaces, gentry manor houses, and suburban villas of merchants and professionals. One of the effects of the small, standardised format was to represent properties of vastly different size, style and status, within a common scenic genre, part of Repton’s promotion of a form of polite landscape which united many social ranks. The vignettes show various features, beyond the mansions, lodges, conservatories, pavilions, grottoes, flower gardens, woodlands, lakes, riversides, and wider views of the country, such as ranges of hills and sea views. The views include some parkland animals - sheep and deer - also human figures, including residents and visitors. Many view points are from a public road, displaying Repton’s art, and the properties of his clients, to passing travellers, including the many tourists from polite society who were patriotically discovering the British landscape, now that war had closed continental Europe to tourism. Repton donated the drawings for the publication, to promote his career and showcase the properties of his clients. The illustrations for "The Polite Repository" are part of Repton’s project to reclaim the concept of the picturesque from his learned antagonists: Richard Payne Knight and Uvedale Price.

  • Page Range: 14-27
  • Page Count: 14
  • Publication Year: 2021
  • Language: English