Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Shakespeare's Gardens and My Two African Market Baskets

 



Do you have an African market basket? I think they are beautiful in form and in function. The one with my gardening books in it I bought from my neighbor. He immigrated to the USA from Ghana and is married to my neighbor. He imported about 30 baskets from Ghana to sell at a yard sale. The red basket is from Togo and I bought it at World Market and it holds papers for recycling.


I have a special basket made in Africa that holds some of my garden picture books. "Shakespeare's Gardens" is a favorite book. The first photo shows the gardens and the birthplace and childhood home of Shakespeare. Decades ago my hubby and I toured Stratford-upon-Avon, saw a play in the old theater and visited a few homes related to The Bard. Shakespeare lived and worked there for most of his 52 years. The book is written by Jackie Bennett with photographs by Andrew Lawson.

In reading this book I was stunned and saddened to learn that Shakespeare's grand and final home "New Place" was torn down in 1759 because the current owner couldn't stand the sight seers and because of some sort of legal squabble. All that remains is the handsome gardens. Towns people were outraged when New Place was demolished and hounded the man out of town. That is a harsh loss to the world of literature and gardens and admirers of Shakespeare. Shakespeare wrote 20 plays during his time as owner of New Place.

18 comments:

Kathy G said...

Those baskets are beautiful. I like any type of container to organize things.

Betsy said...

Your baskets are beautiful. That's a shame about Shakespeare's home. That would never happen today with all of the historical foundations.
Blessings,
Betsy

Emma Springfield said...

They are lovely and useful. Good idea.

acorn hollow said...

What a horrid thing to happen to that home! Did he not know that Shakespear owned that lived there?
Yes I have several of those baskets I bought them in a health food store so not sure if they are really from Africa, but I do love the style and colors. I have several sizes for several purposes.
Cathy

Jennifer said...

You can get Gullah woven sweetgrass baskets in the Charleston marketplace. The price is very dear, though. I think ladies still sit in the sun, weaving them before your eyes.

Mari said...

Those baskets are really pretty! I have to woven shopping bags from Africa, made by women who were rescued from the sex trade industry and sell the bags to make money.
That is so sad about Shakespears home!

DUTA said...

Lovely baskets! I like baskets in general, and african styles in particular.

Margaret D said...

Good looking basket, and no I don't have one and don't know of anyone who has one unfortunately.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Terra - I had lots of African baskets which I brought back to the UK ... they are stunning and you've made good use of yours. We have to consider those times ... ie in the 1600s - at least the Shakespeare Society have made good use of the foundations and kept the garden as it would have looked in those times. The plot could have been built over ... thankfully not. Cheers Hilary

DawnTreader said...

I like baskets and have several around my flat (in different sizes). None of them are of this African kind though. I have big wicker basket where I collect newspapers etc for recycling; and various smaller wooden chip baskets for this and that. (Painting/decorating such baskets was kind of a hobby of mine for a while - long time ago now).

Wanda said...

The baskets are lovey. I love baskets, and have many, but none from Africa. They are so useful for many things.

Enjoyed the history of Shakespeare.

Victor S E Moubarak said...

Lovely baskets. Thank you for visiting my Blog.

God bless.

HWIT BLOGG said...

Those baskets are just lovely!
Have a beautiful Sunday :)
Titti

DeniseinVA said...

Those baskets are great, and love the colors. My sister used to live half an hour from Stratford-on-Avon. I remember these places well but never went to see a play, that must have been wonderful! Lovely post!

diamondc said...

Hi Terra: Love your baskets, we have a friend from Tanzania in Africa, who is a catholic Priest, he come every two years, he is amazing, he always brings gifts, I have a beautiful dress and Mike has a lovely shirt, plus all the beads and other items he brings.
I am sad that some people would be so horrible to take down a piece of history, shame on him.

Catherine🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷

Back2OurSmallCorner said...

I don't own any of those type of baskets but they look very colourful. Its a shame that a silly squabble led to a piece of history being destroyed. At least the gardens have been restored and protected for future generations.

Liz Hinds said...

Those are lovely baskets.

Susan Kane said...

Lovely baskets! We toured there in 1984, was amazed by the sense of history.