The Mausolea & Monuments Trust

Publication news: Reprinting 'On the Laying Out, Planting, and Managing of Cemeteries; and on the Improvement of Churchyards'

16 July 2019

Professor James Stevens Curl is proposing to bring out a limited, numbered, finely bound, hardback, enlarged facsimile edition of Loudon’s seminal work on cemeteries, originally published in London in 1843 on very poor-quality paper and with an extremely small font.

The new edition will be on good paper, with an enlarged font, and will include a new annotated Introductory Essay on Loudon’s involvement with cemeteries by Professor Curl, with Bibliography, a colour portrait of Loudon, a facsimile of Loudon’s Obituary of 1844, a List of Subscribers, and an Index compiled by Auriol Griffith-Jones.

John Claudius Loudon (1783-1843), Scots agriculturist, encyclopædist, landscapegardener, horticulturist, architect, influential critic, and polymath, ‘conducted’ The  Gardener’s Magazine from 1826, in which he published numerous articles on cemeteries, and these he collected and brought out in his 1843 book, the most exhaustive tome ever written on the subject, and a mine of information, which includes detailed ideas for landscaping cemeteries that were widely followed. Loudon’s concept of the cemetery as a landscape-garden/arboretum, with all plants clearly labelled, was part of his belief in mass-education and improvement of tone in society, and he argued that once cemeteries were full they should become places of contemplation and quietness, with the monuments conserved rather than swept away. He produced designs for three cemeteries: Histon Road, Cambridge, Bath Abbey, and Old Southampton (all 1842-3), as well as influencing the planting of many more.

James Stevens Curl has studied funerary architecture and landscapes for some 63 years: among his published works are The Victorian Celebration of Death (1972 and 2004), A Celebration of Death (1980), Funerary Monuments & Memorials in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh (2013), and studies of funerary monuments by Sir Francis Chantrey and others. He contributed to, and edited, the major study of the General Cemetery of All Souls, Kensal Green, London (2001).

Subscriptions are invited, to be received no later than 1 September 2019. The cost per copy is £40.00 to include postage and packing within the United Kingdom only. For postage to Europe please add £5.00, and for postage outside Europe please add £10.00.

Copies will be sent out to subscribers as soon as the book is available, estimated as December 2019. After 1 September the price per copy will be £55.00, so Subscribers will get a fine copy at less than cost.

To subscribe, please fill in this form, and post to: Professor James Stevens Curl, 15 Torgrange, Holywood, County Down, BT18 0NG, United Kingdom

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