I came across this wonderful drawing whilst doing some archive research the other day:
It shows the grounds of a villa near Crystal Palace Park in Sydenham, and it wasn't relevant to what I was looking for but I snapped a shot as it captured my fancy. I'm really getting into historic gardens lately and I thought this layout was just fabulous.
My knowledge of garden and landscape history isn't so hot (yet!) but this was a late 19th century drawing and I think the trend around then was for picturesque, "natural" (but in reality, completely contrived) landscapes. There's a bit of formality closer to the house here:
But overall, there's not much formal symmetry or straight lines in this garden. Check out that scrolled path at the bottom!
Oh, the thought of traipsing about in that garden just makes my toes tingle with excitement! Meandering along the serpentine paths, ducking into the wooded borders for games of hide and seek...
And I wonder what those open lawns might have been used for? Garden parties? Croquet? Sigh!