Shenstone, William, 1714-1763

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English poet.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [The Leasowes], to J.S. Hylton, 1758 Aug. 8. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270663776

From the description of Autograph letter signed in another hand : [The Leasowes], to J.S. Hylton, [1759 Aug. 6]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270662690

From the description of Autograph note signed : [n.p.], to Mrs. Southwell, [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270664476

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [The Leasowes], to J.S. Hylton, 1757 Jan. 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270663774

From the description of Autograph letter unsigned : the Leasowes, to Bishop Percy, 1759 June 6. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270664121

William Shenstone, English poet, was educated at Pembroke College, Oxford. He inherited the estate of the Leasowes in 1735, and spent much of his income in creating a "show garden" there. His best-known poem, The Schoolmistress, was published in 1737.

From the description of William Shenstone papers, 1726-1979, (bulk 1751-1770). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 702146954

From the description of William Shenstone papers, 1726-1979 (bulk 1751-1770). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 81732451

William Shenstone was born in Halesowen, Worcestershire on November 13, 1714. He was educated first in a dame school run by Sarah Lloyd, whom he celebrated in his poem "The Schoolmistress," then at the Halesowen grammar school. In 1732 he matriculated at Pembroke College, Oxford, where his friends included the writers Richard Jago and Richard Graves.

A small volume of his poetry was privately printed at Oxford in 1737, and "The Judgement of Hercules" and "The Schoolmistress" appeared anonymously in 1741 and 1742. Shenstone was enrolled at Oxford until 1742, but took no degree.

After the death of his guardian Thomas Dolman in 1745, Shenstone moved onto the Leasowes estate and devoted his life and more than his income to improving the grounds and gardens. The ferme ornée style of ornamented landscaping at The Leasowes was an important influence on later English landscape gardening (a term Shenstone may have originated), and the grounds became "a place to be visited by travellers, and copied by designers," as Johnson noted.

Shenstone's occasional poetry continued to appear in Robert Dodsley's Collection of Poems (1748, 1755, 1758), and his friends and correspondents included several literary figures, among them William Somerville, Joseph Spence, Joseph Grainger, Thomas Percy, and the actor Thomas Hull, as well as Lady Luxborough.

In early 1763, Shenstone hoped to be granted a pension by Lord Bute, and visited Lord Stamford in pursuit of it. Unfortunately, during his return home he developed a chill and a "putrid fever," and died on February 11, 1763. The unmarried Shenstone had no direct heirs, and left his financially embarrassed estate to his cousin, John Hodgetts. Dodsley published his three-volume Works, which included Shenstone's essay "Unconnected Thoughts on Gardening," in 1764-69.

From the guide to the William Shenstone papers, 1726-1979, 1751-1770, (Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Literary miscellany, ca. 1800-1865 (bulk ca. 1800) College of Charleston, Marlene and Nathan Addlestone Library
referencedIn Noble, Mark, 1754-1827. The history of the family of Boleyn : particularly that of Queen Ann Boleyn, together with the life of her daughter, and only child, the princess Elizabeth who afterwards ascended the English throne, in which is given a critical examination of Holingshed's account of her imprisonment, 1799 / by the Rev. Mark Noble, F.A.S. of L. & E., Rector of Barming in Kent, & domestic chaplain to George, Earl of Leicester. With an appendix added by the author in the year 1803. Yale University, Lewis Walpole Library
referencedIn White, Miss. Occasional poems / by Miss White of Edgbaston: corrected by Mr. Shenstone, [1750s]. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Clarence Louis Frank Gohdes Papers, and undated, bulk, 1811-1990s, 1905-1981 David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed W. Shenstone to: [Lady Luxborough] October 14, 1752. Wellesley College
referencedIn [Commonplace book], [ca. 1822]. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn William Shenstone and others: Poems, 1765 Cambridge University Library, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives
referencedIn Jones, Eliza. [Commonplace book], 1811-1834. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf William Shenstone papers, 1726-1979, 1751-1770 Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn [Commonplace book], [ca. 1780]. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed in another hand : [The Leasowes], to J.S. Hylton, [1759 Aug. 6]. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Hull, Thomas, 1728-1808. Shenstone's walks, circa 1760. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed : the Leasowes, to Lady Luxborough, 1751 May 24-25. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Books from the library of Amos Bronson Alcott, 1579-1893. Houghton Library.
creatorOf Garrick, David, 1717-1779,. Poetical miscellany of David Garrick [manuscript], ca. 1765. Folger Shakespeare Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Letter to John Livie, May 20, 1762. Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens
referencedIn Commonplace book containing English poetry, [circa 1790-1810]. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf Dodsley, Robert, 1703-1764,. Extract of a letter from Mr. Robert Dodsley to Mr. Shenstone, 1762 [manuscript], 18th century? Folger Shakespeare Library
referencedIn Amy Lowell autograph collection, 1523-1930. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Commonplace book, circa 1748-1761. Yale University, Lewis Walpole Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. William Shenstone papers, 1726-1979, (bulk 1751-1770). Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Houghton Library printed book provenance file, R-Z, and unidentified. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Chedworth, John Howe, Baron, 1754-1804,. Autograph letter signed from John Howe Chedworth to Madam [manuscript], 1802 March 18. Folger Shakespeare Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. William Shenstone papers, 1726-1979 (bulk 1751-1770). Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Donald Hyde and Mary Hyde Eccles Autograph Collection, 1505-1957 (inclusive), 1702-1854 (bulk). Houghton Library.
creatorOf Luxborough, Henrietta (St. John) Knight, Lady, 1699-1756. Autograph letter signed : Barrells, to [William Shenstone], 1755 Mar. 19. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed Will Shenstone to: Mr. Hylton November 23, 1758. Wellesley College
creatorOf Trigg, Thomas. A common place book. University of California, Los Angeles
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter unsigned : the Leasowes, to Bishop Percy, 1759 June 6. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Nash, Treadway Russell, 1725-1811. Autograph letter signed : [n.p.], to an unidentified correspondent, ca. 1764-1769. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Poetical miscellany [manuscript], ca. 1765. Folger Shakespeare Library
referencedIn Hull, Thomas, 1728-1808. Album, [ca. 1763-1773]. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed Will Shenstone to: Lady Luxborough December 30, 1751. Wellesley College
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph note signed : [n.p.], to Mrs. Southwell, [n.d.]. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Lamb, Charles, 1775-1834. Commonplace book, [ca. 1805-1808]. Rosenbach Museum & Library
referencedIn Locker-Lampson, Warburg, Grimson autograph album, 1552-1890. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Letters of Samuel Johnson, LL.D., collected and edited by George Birkbeck Hill, extra-illustrated, 1413-1900 (inclusive), 1775-1839 (bulk). Houghton Library.
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed : [The Leasowes], to J.S. Hylton, 1758 Aug. 8. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Whistler, Anthony, 1714-1754. 11 letters to William Shenstone; Whitchurch, Oxford, and Birmingham, [ca. 1752-1754]. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf Shenstone, William, 1714-1763. Autograph letter signed : [The Leasowes], to J.S. Hylton, 1757 Jan. 18. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Autograph File, S, 1556-1996. Houghton Library.
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Alcott, Amos Bronson, 1799-1888 person
associatedWith Anderson, Robert O., person
associatedWith Chedworth, John Howe, Baron, 1754-1804, person
associatedWith Dodsley, Robert, 1703-1764. person
associatedWith Garrick, David, 1717-1779, person
associatedWith Gohdes, Clarence, 1901 person
associatedWith Houghton Library. person
associatedWith Hull, Thomas, 1728-1808. person
associatedWith Hylton, John Scott, person
associatedWith Hylton, John Scott, Esq. person
correspondedWith Johnson, Samuel, 1709-1784 person
associatedWith Jones, Eliza. person
associatedWith Jovanovich, William, person
associatedWith Lamb, Charles, 1775-1834. person
associatedWith Livie, John, fl. 1762, person
associatedWith Locker-Lampson, Frederick, 1821-1895 person
correspondedWith Lowell, Amy, 1874-1925 person
associatedWith Luxborough, Henrietta Kinght, Baroness, 1699-1756. person
associatedWith Luxborough, Henrietta (St. John) Knight, Lady, 1699-1756, person
associatedWith Nash, Treadway Russell, 1725-1811. person
associatedWith Noble, Mark, 1754-1827. person
associatedWith Percy, Thomas, 1729-1811, person
associatedWith Southwell, Mrs, person
associatedWith Trigg, Thomas. person
associatedWith Whistler, Anthony, 1714-1754. person
associatedWith White, Miss. person
associatedWith William Shenstone and others person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Leasowes Garden (Halesowen, England)
England
Leasowes Garden (Halesowen, England)
Leasowes Garden (Halesowen, England)
Great Britain
Great Britain
England
Subject
Gardens--Design
Wages--Household employees
Authors, English--18th century--Correspondence
Female domestics
Female domestics--Great Britain
Gardens, English--Design
Poets, English--Homes and haunts
Wages--Domestic
Gardens--England--Design
Poets, English--Homes and haunts--England
Occupation
Function

Person

Birth 1714-11-18

Death 1763-02-11

Britons

English

Information

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