"It's what happened to the Enlightenment, isn't it? A century of intellectual rigour turned in on itself. A mind in chaos suspected of genius. In a setting of cheap thrills and fake beauty... The decline from thinking to feeling, you see."
In a large country house in 1809, the thirteen-year-old Thomasina Coverly and her young tutor Septimus Hodge discuss mathematics, metaphysics and ‘carnal embrace’, looking out over the idealised landscaped gardens about to give way to the ruins and waterfalls of the ‘picturesque’ Gothic style. 180 years later, Bernard Nightingale and garden historian Hannah Jarvis look through the same window as they attempt to uncover the scandal said to have taken place when Lord Byron stayed at Sidley Park.
"It is nature as God intended, and I can say with the painter, ‘Et in Arcadia ego!’ Here I am in Arcadia."
Tom Stoppard’s ‘beautiful and brilliant’ tale of two centuries unfolds within the idyllic refinement of Peterhouse’s Scholars' Garden.