The Hermit in the Garden: From Imperial Rome to Ornamental Gnome Paperback – 31 Jul 2014
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
he Hermit in the Garden is a fascinating journey down this strange byway of the past. (Shiny New Books)
a useful addition to the literature on the Georgian garden (Roger White, Historic House)
About the Author
Gordon Campbell is Professor of Renaissance Studies at the University of Leicester. He is the author of the best-selling Bible: The Story of the King James Bible and of many other books on literature, art, history, and biography. A fellow of the British Academy and a former chair of the Society for Renaissance Studies, in 2012 he was awarded the Longman - History Today Trustees Award for a lifetime contribution to History. In this book his interests in cultural history, architectural history, and designed landscapes converge in a pioneering study of the phenomenon of the English ornamental hermit and his hermitage.
Top Customer Reviews
I was surprised that there was so little about the Christian hermit tradition, but as this book focuses on the existence of buildings, that can be forgiven.
I've long wondered about the ornamental hermit tradition, having now reached the age where a National Trust property visit seems like the perfect highlight for a special weekend. And now I'm much better informed.
I loved the idea of this book and Gordon Campbell has done a magnificent job of charting the early history of the ornamental hermit from Roman times to its heyday in Georgian England. At its best it was a way of someone earning enough money to live the rest of their lives comfortably after their contract finished, at its worst it was a form of slavery whereby the master of the house would consign a member of staff, or even a tenant, to take on the role of the hermit whether they wanted to or not. The duty of the hermit was to take on board the sadness or melancholy of the family (and in a broader sense society) and be the outward expression of that emotion.Read more ›
The first chapter charts the history of the hermitage; the second chapter explores the notion of the hermit in general whilst chapter three looks at the hermit specifically, with plenty of examples from both real life and literature. In chapter four and five the author looks in depth at the eighteenth century English and Celtic craze for hermitage building and in chapter six the story is brought up to date, including the modern take on the hermit - the garden gnome! The appendices include a comprehensive list of British and Continental hermitages.
The illustrations are good with many black and white on-page photographs and a nice selection of full page glossy pictures.
A well written book, the author allows his sense of humour shine through without ever lapsing into frivolity - quite a feat, given the subject matter! I found the subject really quite absorbing. The only two examples of the hermitage I am familiar with are at opposite ends of the scale - the small cave at Warkworth in Northumberland and the stupendous Hermitage in St Petersburg, but I realise now how much they have in common.
Owners of large estates had hermits installed in appropriately designed hermitages as a talking point for their visitors. In many instances the hermits were actually statues or models and not real people.
The author quotes some advertisements placed in various publications for hermits which stipulated that they must agree to not cut their nails or their hair for the time of their residence. Sometimes it was the landowner who took up residence in the hermitage. Some hermits were there for religious reasons but many were installed for decorative and fashionable reasons.
The book contains two appendices - one contains a catalogue of hermitages and the other is an essay on the hermit, the hermitage and the continent. There is a list of works consulted for anyone who wants to read more about the subject and an index.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have always been a fan of the folly and this little book looks at hermitages through history. The book is a fascinating look from real hermits to decorative ones. Read morePublished on 19 Oct. 2013 by ratscat13
This is an unusual stocking filler of a book. The book cover gives the title "The Hermit in the garden from imperial Rome to ornamental gnome" which is nothing if not intriguing,... Read morePublished on 18 Sept. 2013 by J. Aitken
I am very much a fan of this book and was first attracted by the title which seemed intriguing.
What you get is a lovely, relatively slim volume which proves the... Read more
A history of the ornamental hermitage, going back to the 2nd Century in Rome but focusing on the 18th Century heyday of themed landscaping, when the wealthy would employ actors to... Read morePublished on 15 Sept. 2013 by A. Miles
I have a long standing interest in hermits and hermitages (yes, okay, laugh at me if you want!), but I was quite disappointed by this book, and surprised to learn it comes from an... Read morePublished on 31 Aug. 2013 by Rosey Lea
I was hoping to be enlightened and entertained by this book, sadly I was neither
Sprinkled with black and white drawings and with a group of colour plates in the centre... Read more
This book relays the whimsical but historically solid history of the hermit's place in the landscaped garden. Read morePublished on 28 Aug. 2013 by Thomas Pots
Hermits. Hmmmm. I knew of hermits, obviously, but I didn't know about them, if you see what I mean. I've seen hermitages on estates and caves where hermits were reputed to have... Read morePublished on 24 Aug. 2013 by T. Walker
Look for similar items by category
- Books > Art, Architecture & Photography > Architecture > Types of Architecture > Landscape
- Books > Art, Architecture & Photography > Architecture > Types of Architecture > Residential Buildings > Palaces, Chateaux & Country Houses
- Books > History > Britain & Ireland > Ireland
- Books > History > Britain & Ireland > Scotland
- Books > History > Britain & Ireland > Wales
- Books > History > Britain & Ireland > World War I 1914-1918
- Books > History > Cultural History
- Books > History > Essays, Journals, Letters & True Accounts > 16th-18th Centuries
- Books > History > Europe > World War I 1914-1918
- Books > History > Military History > World War I
- Books > History > World History > World War I 1914-1918
- Books > Home & Garden > Gardening > Garden Styles > Cottage Gardens