Tuesday, June 17, 2008

the Mount

The Mount was the impressive home of great American writer Edith Wharton--author of The House of Mirth, Ethan Frome, and The Age of Innocence.

"Edith Wharton (1862-1937) was born into a tightly controlled society known as "Old New York" at a time when women were discouraged from achieving anything beyond a proper marriage.

Wharton broke through these strictures to become one of America's greatest writers... She wrote over 40 books in 40 years, including authoritative works on architecture, gardens, interior design, and travel. Essentially self-educated, she was the first woman awarded:

  • the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction
  • an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Yale University
  • full membership in the American Academy of Arts and Letters"
This woman was fierce. Not only did she transcend gender boundaries of her time and become an award-winning literary figure, she herself designed and built her home in Lenox, Massachusetts, The Mount.

And what an impressive home it is! The architecture and gardens are elegant and classic; representative of her belief that design should follow the "principles of proportion, harmony, simplicity, and suitability."

It's a gorgeous setting. If I lived in Massachusetts, I'd get married here.

Sadly, the Mount is about to go through foreclosure, and therefore will be closed to the public, unless they can raise $3 million by the end of October. They've set up a fund to help Save the Mount. It'd be sad to see such a beautiful place close down. I wish a millionaire would make a sizeable donation to ensure the posterity of Edith Wharton's legacy and make it accessible to everyone.

I wish I could visit it before it closes down, but alas...Massachusetts is rather far away.

excerpts and photos via edithwharton.org.

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