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Failure to inform[edit]

I read this article and failed to understand what the picturesque is. Really, no definition is given anywhere in the article.Amadeus webern (talk) 00:55, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

I agree with the above. This article needs to be much more brief and clear. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:22, 20 March 2013 (UTC)

Reaction against enclosure[edit]

I read somewhere that the picturesque was a reaction against the increasing enclosure of common land in Britain: whereas the sublime portrayed the taming of wilderness as a grand and noble undertaking, the picturesque presented wilderness as an attractive, unthreatening place, suggesting that it would be nobler to leave it alone. My source for this isn't really appropriate to this article, but it attributes this view to John Barrell's The Dark Side of the Landscape and Arn Bermingham's Landscape and Ideology. Hesperian 06:25, 22 November 2009 (UTC)


It seems to me that if the lead is is correct

Picturesque is an aesthetic ideal introduced into English cultural debate in 1782 by William Gilpin...

Then these sentences can not be correct:

Picturesque tourists were also encouraged to reshape the landscapes as settings for English country houses, exemplified by Lancelot 'Capability' Brown. Following Gilpin's advice, many landowners began designing gardens with irregular sight lines and prefabricated ruins of 'classical' structures.

Picturesque meaning literally "in the manner of a picture; fit to be made into a picture" was a word used as early as 1703 (Oxford English Dictionary), and derived from an Italian term pittoresco, meaning, "in the manner of a painter," William Gilpin's Essay on Prints (1768) defined picturesque as " ... a term expressive of that peculiar kind of beauty, which is agreeable in a picture" (xii).

Lancelot "Capability" Brown died in 1783 and "many landowners began designing gardens with irregular sight lines and prefabricated ruins of 'classical' structures" before that date (around the 1750s) for example see the works of Sanderson Miller (1716-1780), and clients such as George, 1st Lord Lyttelton (1709–1773).

So either building follies such as ruined castles to please the eye pre-dated Picturesque or the dates in the lead of this article are wrong. -- PBS (talk) 18:21, 23 June 2012 (UTC)