The Maritime History of Cornwall
By (author) Philip Payton, Dr Alston Kennerley, Helen Doe Contributions by John C. Appleby, John Armstrong, G.H. and R. Bennett, Terry Chapman, Wendy R. Childs, Dr Janet Cusack, Bernard Deacon, Helen Doe, Roy Fenton, Dr Alston Kennerley, Maryanne Kowaleski, Tony Pawlyn, Philip Payton, Cathryn Pearce, Caradoc Peters, N.A.M. Rodger, John Rule, W.B. Stephens, Mark Stoyle, John Symons, Dr Simon Trezise, Adrian James Webb, Paul Willerton
Publication date:01 May 2015
Length of book:496 pages
PublisherUniversity of Exeter Press
Cornwall is quintessentially a maritime region. Almost an island, nowhere in it is further than 25 miles from the sea. Cornwall’s often distinctive history has been moulded by this omnipresent maritime environment, while its strategic position at the western approaches—jutting out into the Atlantic—has given this history a global impact.
It is perhaps surprising then, that, despite the central place of the sea in Cornwall’s history, there has not yet been a full maritime history of Cornwall. The Maritime History of Cornwall sets out to fill this gap, exploring the rich and complex maritime inheritance of this unique peninsula.
In a beautifully illustrated volume, individually commissioned contributions from distinguished historians elaborate on the importance of different periods, from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century.
The Maritime History of Cornwall is a significant addition to the literature of international maritime history and is indispensable to those with an interest in Cornwall past and present.
Winner of the Holyer an Gof Non-Fiction Award 2015.
‘There are some books which are a delight to hold, and to behold, even before one delves into their pages – and this is one of them. A pleasingly chunky volume, the front of the dust jacket features Joseph Southall’s The Three Masted Schooner, his limpid and evocative 1919 marine landscape of a marine vessel at Fowey which sums up so many of the themes coverd within, such as maritime trade, coastal communities, and Cornwall’s later promotion as a holiday destination. A well-chosen and effective pictorial overture!’
‘Each part is prefaced by an admirable joint essay by the editors’
‘This is a serious, substantial, yet readily readable volume, which comprises excellent essays by some of the UK’s foremost maritime historians.’
(David Jenkins, The Mariner’s Mirror 102.1, Feb 2016)
‘[…] the book is handsomely produced and the editors are to be congratulated on a job well done.’
(James H. Thomas, Southern History 37, 2015)
‘This hefty and handsome volume …
‘The editors are to be commended for pulling so many threads together in such a capable way, and their editorial contributions certainly make the volume much more coherent than is often the case with multi-author projects on this scale. The book sets some important standards for maritime-regional studies. It should be the first port of call for anyone interested in Cornwall’s history (maritime or otherwise), as well as for scholars seeking examples of long-term change in societies at the frontier between land and sea.’
(Graeme J. Milne, The International Journal of Maritime History 27, 3 2015
‘An impressive team of authors has been assembled, with a number of highly regarded scholars contributing chapters on their specialist subjects.' (Dr David J. Starkey, Maritime Historical Studies Centre, Hull)
‘Occasionally a book is published that can truly be described as seminal.’
‘The Maritime History of Cornwall […] really does encapsulate 10,000 years of salty facts, figures, statistics, true stories, legends and anecdotes.’
‘A handsomely illustrated volume of commissioned contributions from distinguished historians.’ (Martin Hesp, Western Morning News, 19.11.14)
‘It is very difficult to do justice to the wealth of research, writing and organisation that has clearly gone into the production of The Maritime History of Cornwall. Everything about it screams quality, from the paper and the layout of the text on the page to the green cloth binding and the now-rarely-seen matching cloth bookmark. One very minor quibble: it would have been better if the twenty eight colour illustrations were scattered throughout the text, rather than confined to a block between pages six and seven. That aside, this is as close to perfection as any publication gets!’ (James Whetter, The Cornish Banner 159, February 2015)
‘This is an important and very well produced books, profusely illustrated, including 28 colour plates, and with abundant maps, prints, photographs, tables and figures.’
‘[…] they have taken pains to set the chapters of their work in context with five substantial, informative, wide-ranging introductions to the volume’s component parts… These indeed have been the key to making the volume work so well.’
‘[…] this is a quality production and a mine of knowledge presented in a readable and easily accessible way that those with an interest in the maritime history of the South West cannot afford to be without.’ (Michael Duffy, South West Soundings 98, March 2015)