Sunday, March 15, 2009


Innocent Delight

Joseph Addison, On Gardens (The Spectator No. 477, Saturday, September 6, 1712):
I have always thought a kitchen-garden a more pleasant sight than the finest orangery, or artificial green-house. I love to see everything in its perfection, and am more pleased to survey my rows of colworts and cabbages, with a thousand nameless pot-herbs, springing up in their full fragrancy and verdure, than to see the tender plants of foreign countries kept alive by artificial heats, or withering in an air and soil that are not adapted to them....I look upon the pleasure which we take in a garden, as one of the most innocent delights in human life. A garden was the habitation of our first parents before the fall. It is naturally apt to fill the mind with calmness and tranquillity, and to lay all its turbulent passions at rest. It gives us a great insight into the contrivance and wisdom of Providence, and suggests innumerable subjects for meditation. I cannot but think the very complacency and satisfaction which a man takes in these works of nature to be a laudable, if not a virtuous, habit of mind.

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