In As You Like It, William Shakespeare describes the Forest of Arden as having "tongues in trees, books in running brooks, Sermons in stones and good in every thing" (2.1.16-17).
That's also an apt description of The Huntington, where literary treasures (including a world-class collection of the Bard's own works) flourish in the midst of nature. Located between the Huntington Art Gallery and the Virginia Steele Scott Gallery and connecting to the Rose Garden, the Shakespeare Garden features a broad variety of plants; some cultivated in England during Shakespeare's time, some mentioned in his plays and sonnets, plus many whose ancestors trace back to plants of his Renaissance writings. From Hamlet, there are pansies, fennel, a willow tree, and rosemary; from Romeo and Juliet, a pomegranate tree; from A Midsummer Night's Dream, violets and thyme; from A Winter's Tale, daffodils and maidenheads; and, of course, daisies from Love's Labour's Lost.
Roses are the most often mentioned flower in Shakespeare's work. Here in the garden, visitors will find some of the old damask and musk rose varieties dating back to Roman and Renaissance times that would have been familiar to him, plus modern examples of roses whose flower forms were common in that era. The wonderfully fragrant 'William Shakespeare 2000' rose surrounds a welcoming bench. Its color and form could well resemble the "deep vermilion" rose mentioned in Sonnet 98. Framed entirely by roses, a bust of Shakespeare commemorates the author of 37 plays, 154 sonnets and two narrative poems?many of them found in early editions in the Library.
Item Special Note
Gift certificate will be mailed to the winning bidder. May only be redeemed when The Huntington is reopened and it is safe to visit.
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