The gentleman's recreation


Alternative Title

The second part of the art of gardening improved
Containing several new experiments and curious observations relating to fruit-trees: particularly, a new method of building walls with horizontal shelters. Illustrated with copper plates ... By John Lavrence ...

Date Created



Eb 1717 L [de Beer Special Collections]


Printed for B. Lintott: London


The 2d ed.

The Rev. John Laurence (1668-1732), was the first of sixteen clergymen to write important gardening books in the 18th century. His first work The Clergy-Man's Recreation (1714) aimed to preserve the health of clergy by encouraging them to leave their studies and gain moderate exercise in practical gardening, especially the cultivation of fruit against protective walls. Its success led him to write The Gentleman's Recreation (1716) and The Fruit-Garden Kalendar (1718), all three appearing in an omnibus edition entitled Gardening Improv'd (1718). To his gentlemen readers, Laurence advocated the modern philosophy that ‘Though we may safely do many things, which Nature would not or could not do; yet we are never to hope for Success, if we do any thing contrary to Nature' (p. 16).




Laurence, John, “The gentleman's recreation,” | OUR Heritage, accessed April 21, 2024,