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"André Le Nôtre and the Gardens at Chantilly in the 17th and 18th centuries" re-creates the splendours of the gardens at Chantilly, inviting the reader on a majestic tour of its allées and parterres, pools and fountains. Unique in their lavish use of water - unsurpassed in scale with any of Le Nôtre's other creations - these gardens were to remain Le Nôtre's own favourite until the end of his life. Through paintings, drawings, plans and engravings, this volume traces their development, from the laying out of the chateau entrance and forecourt to the design and construction of its awe-inspiring fountains, waterfalls and parterres, revealing not only the full scale of the project, but also many hitherto unknown details of the story behind its realisation. From the second half of the seventeenth century, Chantilly became renowned above all for its sumptuous outdoor events and its spectacular firework displays. From games, mazes and carousels to elegant statuary, topiary and trelliswork, everything within these grounds was designed for the delight and amazement of the Princes of Condé and their illustrious guests. Richly illustrated with a wealth of contemporary paintings, drawings, plans and engravings, this account by one of France's most distinguished authorities on Le Nôtre plunges the reader back into a world of magnificence and splendour, painting a fascinating portrait of these gardens where «all was enchantment».
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Emilie Frèche, lauréate du Prix Orange du Livre 2013 pour "Deux étrangers"