John Dixon Hunt is widely considered one of the foremost of today's writers on thehistory and theory of gardens and landscape architecture. Gardens and the Picturesque collects 11 ofHunt's essays - several of them never before published - that deal with the ways in which men andwomen have given meaning to gardens and landscapes, especially with the ways in which gardens haverepresented the world of nature "picturesquely."Ranging over subjects from the cult of thepicturesque to verbal-visual parallels within gardens, from allegorical imagery to landscapepainting, these essays brilliantly invoke Hunt's fascination with the idea of the garden both as amilieu - by which gardens become the most eloquent expressions of complex cultural ideas - and as asite of cultural translation, whereby one period shapes for its own purposes the ideas and formsinherited from its predecessors.From Castle Howard in Yorkshire to French impressionist gardens theessays deal with several crucial aspects of the picturesque controversy, how practical applicationsof the Picturesque taste affected people's treaty with and experience of landscape gardens and eventhe larger landscape - this last is tracked through the work of the great painter J. M. W. Turnerand his talented commentator, John Ruskin, as well as through the garden designs of Humphry Reptonand the lingering debts to the picturesque movement that haunt modernist theory. The book concludeswith a consideration of the utopian aspirations and views of the garden in different societies.JohnDixon Hunt is currently academic advisor to the Oak Spring Garden Library, Upperville, Virginia. Thefounding editor of both The Journal of Garden History and Word & Image, he has been a SeniorFellow and from 1988 to 1991 Director of Studies in Landscape Architecture at Harvard University'sDumbarton Oaks.