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Flowers and Flower-Gardens With an Appendix of Practical Instructions and Useful Information Respecting the Anglo-Indian Flower-Garden   By: (1801-1865)

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FLOWERS AND FLOWER GARDENS.

BY

DAVID LESTER RICHARDSON,

PRINCIPAL OF THE HINDU METROPOLITAN COLLEGE, AND AUTHOR OF "LITERARY LEAVES," "LITERARY RECREATIONS," &C.

WITH AN APPENDIX OF

PRACTICAL INSTRUCTIONS AND USEFUL INFORMATION RESPECTING THE ANGLO INDIAN FLOWER GARDEN.

CALCUTTA:

MDCCCLV.

PREFACE.

In every work regard the writer's end, Since none can compass more than they intend.

Pope .

This volume is far indeed from being a scientific treatise On Flowers and Flower Gardens : it is mere gossip in print upon a pleasant subject. But I hope it will not be altogether useless. If I succeed in my object I shall consider that I have gossipped to some purpose. On several points such as that of the mythology and language of flowers I have said a good deal more than I should have done had I been writing for a different community. I beg the London critics to bear this in mind. I wished to make the subject as attractive as possible to some classes of people here who might not have been disposed to pay any attention to it whatever if I had not studied their amusement as much as their instruction. I have tried to sweeten the edge of the cup.

I did not at first intend the book to exceed fifty pages: but I was almost insensibly carried on further and further from the proposed limit by the attractive nature of the materials that pressed upon my notice. As by far the largest portion, of it has been written hurriedly, amidst other avocations, and bit by bit; just as the Press demanded an additional supply of " copy ," I have but too much reason to apprehend that it will seem to many of my readers, fragmentary and ill connected. Then again, in a city like Calcutta, it is not easy to prepare any thing satisfactorily that demands much literary or scientific research. There are very many volumes in all the London Catalogues, but not immediately obtainable in Calcutta, that I should have been most eager to refer to for interesting and valuable information, if they had been at hand. The mere titles of these books have often tantalized me with visions of riches beyond my reach. I might indeed have sent for some of these from England, but I had announced this volume, and commenced the printing of it, before it occurred to me that it would be advisable to extend the matter beyond the limits I had originally contemplated. I must now send it forth, "with all its imperfections on its head;" but not without the hope that in spite of these, it will be found calculated to increase the taste amongst my brother exiles here for flowers and flower gardens, and lead many of my Native friends (particularly those who have been educated at the Government Colleges, who have imbibed some English thoughts and feelings and who are so fortunate as to be in possession of landed property) to improve their parterres, and set an example to their poorer countrymen of that neatness and care and cleanliness and order which may make even the peasant's cottage and the smallest plot of ground assume an aspect of comfort, and afford a favorable indication of the character of the possessor.

D.L.R.

Calcutta, September 21st 1855.

ERRATA.

A friend tells me that the allusion to the Acanthus on the first page of this book is obscurely expressed, that it was not the root but the leaves of the plant that suggested the idea of the Corinthian capital. The root of the Acanthus produced the leaves which overhanging the sides of the basket struck the fancy of the Architect. This was, indeed, what I meant to say, and though I have not very lucidly expressed myself, I still think that some readers might have understood me rightly even without the aid of this explanation, which, however, it is as well for me to give, as I wish to be intelligible to all . A writer should endeavor to make it impossible for any one to misapprehend his meaning, though there are some writers of high name both in England and America who seem to delight in puzzling their readers... Continue reading book >>




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