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Travel Photos...Stourhead, England
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Stourhead in Wiltshire is one of my favourite gardens. I first fell in love with it in 1963. It gave me just as much pleasure in 2011.

It was commissioned by a wealthy banker, Henry Hoare II, in the middle of the 18th Century, and was one of the first gardens to break away from the dominant idea of the formal, geometric garden. Henry Hoare was inspired by the paintings of Claude Lorrain to create a natural landscape garden.

Incidentally, Claude also inspired the English painter Turner who, in turn, inspired the French painter Monet, who then started the Impressionist movement.

I once read an interesting account of Claude Lorrain's stay in Rome. He was there at the same time as another French painter, Nicholas Poussin. However, it appears that they never conversed whilst sharing Rome because Poussin spoke French and Claude only spoke German.

Although the French claim Claude as one of their own, we should remember that Alsace-Lorraine was a territory much disputed by the French and the Germans. The territory was acquired once again by France in 1919, thanks to the Treaty of Versailles. It was annexed by Nazi Germany in 1940, and was finally taken back by the French in 1945.

While Poussin was the epitome of French classical leanings, it would be amusing to think of Claude Lorrain as a German Romantic, way ahead of his time.

The Temple of Apollo. A tribute to the Sun God.
A glimpse of the Pantheon.
The Temple of Flora. The Nature Worship movement of the 18th Century brought a return to Pagan mythology.
Hints of Autumn.
The Bridge of Five Arches with the Pantheon across the lake.

The next few photos are of Bath. We had spent most of the day at Stourhead, and, by the time we arrived in Bath, there was little time to explore that lovely city before the light faded.

Next time!