The phenomenon of the French garden: The origin, development and contemporary reflections on examples from France

Eva Putrová, Katarína Gécová


The meaning of the French gardens today we see, in particular, through the existence of a unique castle, as well as private, historical sites, well preserved and maintained till today, which in varying degrees present the compositional principles of regular style. Many campuses are in private hands and serve as the family seats. Many owners of inherited properties with a garden, purposefully maintain and make them available to the public, often putting the finishing touches in the specified mode, which preserves the cultural and historical continuity of these gems for the current period. The objective of this contribution is not to give the exhaustive excurse of the French formal garden, but on the analysis of selected examples of different sized gardens to highlight the current state of the gardens, in the maintenance of which play an essential role their owners. According the Florence Charter marking a historic garden belongs as well to small gardens, as to large parks. In the paper we present not only the most important works but also two less known historical gardens and historic castle area, which received a new meaning through the new functional use. Currently to the creation of these spaces individual strategic and sensitive approach is applied, with imagination and respect with regard to the history and to today’s demands and conditions. The French garden has influenced the creation of gardens in Slovakia, too. In the article a short description of the current state of the French gardens in Slovakia, or what is left of them today, is listed. The tradition and culture of the French garden are transferred to the current design as well as to the forms of formal compositions of primarily urban landscapes.

Keywords: landscape architecture, phenomenon, development, French garden, origin, meaning