Caroline Eden

25 October 2018

Under the Black Sea

The world's oldest known intact shipwreck has been found resting on its side at the bottom of the Black Sea by an international team of maritime archaeologists. The 23-metre Greek ship, which sank 2400 years ago, is one of dozens of wrecks found by the group over the past three years.

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3 May 2018

Genuine Scotch Mist

Sakoku, Japan’s 200-year policy of national isolation, ended in 1854. As breathless British travellers returned home, writing of their adventures, interest in Japanese-style gardens blossomed. ‘The mountains of Japan are covered with forest,’ the naturalist Isabella Bird wrote in 1876, ‘and the valleys and plains are exquisitely tilled gardens. The Empire is very rich in flowers.’ The craze was brisk. Josiah Conder’s influential book Landscape Gardening in Japan was published in 1893. Gunnersbury Park laid out its Japanese Garden in 1901. There were nurseries, such as Gauntletts of Chiddingfold, that specialised in Japanese styles, lanterns and imported plants. White City hosted the Japan-British Exhibition in 1910. Dwarf trees, bamboos and pines were shipped from Japan for the exhibition’s Garden of Peace and Garden of the Floating Isles. Over six months, eight million visitors came hoping to be transported to Japan via authentic tea houses and replica ‘peasant’ villages, which the Japanese press found embarrassing.

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