Madresfield Owl and Pussycat
There is a large Edward Lear landscape hung in the Staircase Hall at Madresfield, opposite the granite fireplace. Evelyn Waugh was an admirer of Lear. 'He was, in his day, a social lion of the gentlest sort; a man as discriminating and attentive in his friendships as only a bachelor has the time to be; he endeared himself to numerous quite dstinct groups, to the Court, the Stanleys, the Barings, the Tennysons, the Holman Hunts and the cosmopolitan circles of Rome and Cannes; his name appears frequently in their published letters and journals, always with the respect due to a serious artist.' Both these exemplary artists liked to keep a diary when they were travelling, produce something realistic (a travel book and landscape paintings, respectively) when they first got back home, before attempting something more imaginative (a novel on the one hand, nonsense poetry on the other). This page is a tribute to both artists, and to the Lygon sisters who hosted Waugh at Madresfield. A time in his life when he was besotted by Teresa 'Baby' Jungman. (Do please click on the images.)
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The Staircase Hall, Madresfield, showing Edward Lear painting, centre right. Photo by A. Pickett.

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'The Quarries of Syracuse,' by Edward Lear

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