Pleasure Gardens (ME) (ETW building)
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Gardens have long been valued for their tranquillity and ordering of the natural world: a place to rest and restore the spirits.
These gardens are often part of palace grounds, but open to the more important members of society so that they can marvel at the opulent riches and good taste of their rulers. The plantings are restrained and carefully managed: these are not gardens that reflect the wildness of nature, but places that show man’s mastery over the natural world. Geometry is as important as horticulture in the layout of paths, fountains, watercourses and planting beds.
Historically, formal gardens were a feature of many palaces in the Middle East and India, where collections of rare and exotic blooms could be displayed. Formal water gardens of enormous size were laid out, where rulers and their courtiers could take their ease and enjoy the cooler air in the shade of carefully tended trees. In particular, the extravagant use of water in a desert was the mark of limitless wealth.