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Gertrude Jekyll : A Biography

Sally Festing

5 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0670827886 / ISBN 13: 9780670827886
Published by Viking Penguin, London, 1991
Used Condition: Very Good Hardcover

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About this Item

Hardback in jacket. Clean & tight. No inscription. FOXING TO PAGE EDGES. Jacket is not torn and is not price-clipped. Dispatched FIRST CLASS RECORDED NEXT WORKING DAY OR SOONER securely boxed in cardboard. REF MM1298. Bookseller Inventory # 015703

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Gertrude Jekyll : A Biography

Publisher: Viking Penguin, London

Publication Date: 1991

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good

About this title


Traces the life of the garden designer, artist, craftswoman, and writer, describing the influence her family, the arts and crafts movement, and John Ruskin, had on the course of her life

From Kirkus Reviews:

Having revealed her taste for the obscure in books on Norfolk fishermen, lavender, and attitudes toward animals in the 18th century, Festing now offers the intense and productive but parochial life of Gertrude Jekyll (1843-1932)--her gardens, flower arrangements, crafts writings, and English gentry friends and their country homes. One of six children of an upper-middle-class family, Jekyll traveled and studied to be an artist, but her poor eyesight and competing interests led her to crafts, photography, and gardens, and to develop theories of color, texture, design, flower arrangement, and breeding that she published in 15 books with such titles as Wood and Garden and Garden Ornament. Like Ruskin (her inspiration, whom she met while visiting her sister in Venice) and William Morris, Jekyll participated in the Arts and Crafts Movement, a reaction against industrial mass-production in favor of well-designed, handmade goods, especially pottery and needlework. Politically an elitist, personally an abrasive, autocratic, reclusive perfectionist, excessively sensitive to sound, she was affectionately known as ``Bumps,'' an awkward ``spinster'' who disliked children but inspired such loyalty that after her death her gardening boots went on a 20-year odyssey as friends tried to place them in major museums. Largely because of the great writings about it, the garden has come to serve a powerful metaphoric function in English life. While Jekyll may have been aware of the significance of her vocation, especially as a woman, Festing apparently is not. Instead of a cultural lineage, she offers social lineage and unfamiliar names- -Hercules Brabazon of Oaklands in Sedlescomb, or the Higford Burrs of Aldermaster Court, for instance, and of the ``imperishable memory'' of visiting ``Mr. Barr's Tooting nursery with Mrs. Bennet- Poe.'' With few illustrations of Jekyll's work (the 47 b&w photographs are mostly of people) or quotations from her writings, it is difficult to tell what purpose this biography serves. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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