“A dissertation on oriental gardening”
By reading the title of the book you immediately find out important information about it: it is about oriental gardening and is directed to anyone who is interested in it. It can most likely be used as a form of encyclopedia for gardening.
Unfortunately, the book doesn’t have a list of contents but as often seen in other books the author starts by dedicating the book to someone (in this case to the king) and then continues with the preface following by the actual text. The book ends with a small lexicon explaining unclear expressions.
The only pages in the book, which are illustrated, are the title page and the page that is dedicated to the king. I think it would have been nearly impossible to make illustrations explaining the gardening, because at that time it wouldn’t have been easy to copy or to draw in the first place.
The book is average sized. The font appears to be rather large, which makes the content even less dense. As it is a dissertation of the 18th century that amount of content would probably also be average.
Sir William Chambers was a Swedish-Scottish architect who was a member of the royal academy. He was employed by the Swedish East India Company making three voyages to China where he studied Chinese architecture and decoration and where he most likely explored his interests for Chinese gardening styles. As previously mentioned, he wrote this dissertation for scientific purposes. Therefore it influenced the contemporary taste significantly.