Gentle reader, This post from my archive ties in several elements – Louis Simond’s 19th century observations with current links and photographs. As you can see, the Earl of Pembroke’s magnificent house, the embodiment of the Palladian ideal, has been a favorite visiting destination for centuries:
Wilton House, located in Wiltshire, is the ancestral home of the Earls of Pembroke. In 1811, Louis Simond wrote about his visit to the great house in An American in Regency England. Here is his description of the park and grounds.
I measured an evergreen oak (not a large tree naturally); it covered a space of seventeen paces in diameter, and the trunk was twelve feet in circumference. An elm was sixteen feet in circumference, and many appeared about equal. Beyond the water, which before it spreads out into a stagnant lake, is a lively stream, you see an insulated hill covered with wood. We went to it by a very beautiful bridge. The view from that eminence is fine, and its slope would have afforded a healthier and pleasanter situation for the house. The deer came to the call, and ate leaves held to them – too tame for beauty, as they lose by it their graceful inquietude and activity and become mere fat cattle for the shambles. Deer are a good deal out of fashion, and have given way to sheep in many parks.
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