Roy Strong

Busy Lizzy

Elizabeth in the Garden: A Story of Love, Rivalry and Spectacular Design


Faber & Faber 325pp £18.99 order from our bookshop

I have to confess that I have not come across anything quite like this book masquerading under the guise of garden history. It recounts the creation of the gardens at Kenilworth Castle by Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester and those at Theobalds by William Cecil, Lord Burghley, and is billed with Hello-style hype as ‘a story of love, rivalry and spectacular design’. The gardens at Kenilworth reached their apogee in 1575 in time for what turned out to be Queen Elizabeth’s last visit. Those at Theobalds were, in the main, laid out after that date, reaching their peak at the close of the reign, by which time they covered nine acres and were intersected by a network of canals.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'What in other hands could have been a dry, pedantic account of Christianity’s birth and evolution becomes in Holla… ,
    • RT : One of my favourite literary magazines is celebrating 40 years this year. Here is the September edition of… ,
    • 'Now that the Thames is too fast-flowing to freeze, its spirit’s devotees ... have found other climes for their pri… ,
    • 'Bythell glowers past his till at a world in slow free fall.' on the travails of a second-hand book… ,
    • 'It is a scent of animal wrath, of instinctive need, of brutal life which affects the cultured nostrils of our civi… ,
    • 'The day produced countless stories of chance, of people taking one route or another without realising that the dec… ,
    • In this month's 'Silenced Voices', looks at the case of Azimjon Askarov, the journalist and human rights… ,