these problems, the available sources can still tell us a huge amount about the origins of those who made up England’s alien population. This chapter considers those from other parts of the BritishIsles and the Channel Islands, before we move in chapter 5 to look at incomers from continental Europe.
The numbers and distribution of the Welsh within medieval England is the most difficult to judge, since people from Wales were specifically excluded from the scope of the alien subsidies. Only six obviously Welsh people can be found in the 1440 subsidy
Europe. Indeed one abiding impression left on a reading of her book is that the broad similarity of the issues and challenges facing medieval European societies is more than counter-balanced by the protean individuality of the character and chronology of the response of different communities to them.
One area which, understandably, was omitted from Susan Reynolds’s remarkable tour d’horizon was the northern and western parts of the BritishIsles. The reasons for this omission are worth exploring briefly, for they raise issues regarding the concepts, language and
Travel fiction and travelling fiction from D.H. Lawrence to Tim Parks
‘I am not the BritishIsles on
two legs’: travel fiction and
travelling fiction from
D.H. Lawrence to Tim Parks
Time and again, D.H. Lawrence made it clear that his argument was
above all with English, the language in which his society’s values were
enshrined, to the extent, he claims, that he had to invent ‘a foreign
language’ to write his first great novel, The Rainbow. (Tim Parks1)
Tim Parks does not see his novels as belonging to the archive of Anglo-British
fiction. As noted by an interviewer in 1999, Parks locates himself firmly in
Very large numbers of people began to depart the British Isles for the New Worlds after about 1770. This was a pioneering movement, a rehearsal for modern international migration. This book contends that emigration history is not seamless, that it contains large shifts over time and place, and that the modern scale and velocity of mobility have very particular historical roots. The Isle of Man is an ideal starting point in the quest for the engines and mechanisms of emigration, and a particular version of the widespread surge in British emigration in the 1820s. West Sussex was much closer to the centres of the expansionary economy in the new age. North America was the earliest and the greatest theatre of oceanic emigration in which the methods of mass migration were pioneered. Landlocked Shropshire experienced some of the earliest phases of British industrialisation, notably in the Ironbridge/Coalbrookdale district, deep inland on the River Severn. The turmoil in the agrarian and demographic foundations of life reached across the British archipelago. In West Cork and North Tipperary, there was clear evidence of the great structural changes that shook the foundations of these rural societies. The book also discusses the sequences and effects of migration in Wales, Swaledale, Cornwall, Kent, London, and Scottish Highlands. It also deals with Ireland's place in the more generic context of the origins of migration from the British Isles. The common historical understanding is that the pre-industrial population of the British Isles had been held back by Malthusian checks.
Exempla, the stories with which preachers enlivened their sermons and impressed salutary moral lessons on their hearers, have long been appreciated as a source of key importance for medieval history. They played an important part in popular preaching and yet, for all the work being published on preaching and on the mendicant orders more generally, little of the abundant primary material is available in English translation. This book presents translation material from two collections of exempla assembled in the British Isles in the last quarter of the thirteenth century. One, the Liber Exemplorum (LE), was compiled by an English Franciscan working in Ireland. The other, probably the work of an English Dominican based in Cambridge (DC), is represented by fifty-two stories, about one-sixth of the total. These two collections are important because they are among the earliest to survive from the British Isles. Their short, pithy narratives are not limited to matters of Church doctrine and practice, but touch on a wide range of more mundane matters and provide vivid snapshots of medieval life in the broadest sense. The first part of the collection is chiefly devoted to Christ and the Virgin, the Mass and the saving power of the Cross. The second part has exempla on a wide variety of doctrinal, moral and other topics. These include the vices, the virtues, the sacraments and church practice, and the sins and other failings thought to beset particular professions or groups.
During the nineteenth century, over 1.5 million migrants set sail from the British Isles to begin new lives in the Australian colonies. This book follows these people on a fascinating journey around half the globe to give a rich account of the creation of lay and professional medical knowledge in an ever-changing maritime environment. It shows how voyages to Australia partook of colonialism. On leaving the ports, estuaries, and harbours of Britain and Ireland, ships' captains negotiated the adverse winds of the English Channel and the Irish Sea before steering into the Atlantic and heading south-by-south west across the heavy swells of the Bay of Biscay. The book dwells in the tropics, where the experience of calms reinforced and extended preconceptions about the coast of West Africa. It discusses convicts, showing how scurvy became resurgent as British prison committees steadily reduced prison dietary rations during the 1820s and 1830s. Despite their frustrations, the isolation of the ocean and the vulnerability of convicts' bodies offered surgeons an invaluable opportunity for medical experimentation during the 1840s. The book also shows how a series of questions about authority, class, gender, and social status mediated medical relationships as the pressures of the voyage accumulated. Themes of mistrust, cooperation, and coercion emerged in many different ways during the voyage. Australia, where, as emigrants became immigrants, the uncertainties of government responsibility combined with a poisonous political atmosphere to raise questions about eligibility and the conditions of admittance to their new colonial society.
In 1660 the four nations of the British Isles were governed by one imperial crown but by three parliaments. The abolition of the Scottish and Irish Parliaments in 1707 and 1800 created a United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland centred upon the Westminster legislature. This book takes state formation. A number of important points emerge, however, the book deals with three. The first and most obvious point is that the unions were limited in scope and were palpably not incorporating . The second point is that, depending upon the issue, parliament required or encouraged not only different arguments but different voices. The final conclusion to emerge from these essays is that utility of 'national identity' as a way of understanding how people in the period conceived of themselves and their relationship to the state is not as clear and certain as might be first thought. National identity was one amongst a number of geo-political communities people might belong to, albeit a very important one. Inasmuch as the Westminster parliament provided a forum in which debates about how to legislate for three kingdoms took place, in its own way it helped to reinforce awareness of that difference. Liverpool petitions allow us to explore the intersection between policy debate and imperial identity during a pivotal era in the evolution of the British Empire. After 1832, virtual representation, though it survived in many different ways, became associated in the colonial context with nabobs and planters, the very demons of 'old Corruption'.
This book focuses on the role of class in the encounter between South Asians and British institutions in the United Kingdom at the height of British imperialism. The leaders of Britain's cricketing institutions recognised the validity of ranks in an Indian social hierarchy which they attempted to translate into British equivalents. Achievement of Kumar Shri Ranjitsinjhi, one of the greatest cricketers of all time was truly an imperial one, combining the cultures and societies of India and Britain to propel him to a prominence that he would not otherwise have attained. The most important government institution to interact with Indians in Britain was the India Office. The National Indian Association was the most popular forum for interaction among Indians in Britain and Britons interested in India. The London City Mission and the Strangers' Home for Asiatics were the prominent inner-city missions to reach out to Indians in London. The book explores the extent to which British institutions treated Indians as British subjects, sharing a common legal and imperial identity with the inhabitants of the British Isles. It identifies patterns of compassion among Britain's elite when interacting with needy Indians in the United Kingdom, and establishes the central role of education in the civilising mission, particularly through scholarships to study in Britain. The book focuses on the ambiguous responses of British institutions to Indian students in the United Kingdom, ranging from accommodation of Indian culture to acquiescence in British bigotry.
Sanctity as literature in late medieval Britain explores how sanctity and questions of literariness are intertwined across a range of medieval genres. “Sanctity” as a theme and concept figures as a prominent indicator of the developments in the period, in which authors began to challenge the predominant medieval dichotomy of either relying on the authority of previous authors when writing, or on experience. These developments are marked also by a rethinking of the intended and perceived effects of writings. Instead of looking for clues in religious practices in order to explain these changes, the literary practices themselves need to be scrutinised in detail, which provide evidence for a reinterpretation of both the writers’ and their topics’ traditional roles and purposes. The essays in the collection are based on a representative choice of texts from the fourteenth to the early sixteenth centuries, covering penitential literature, hagiographical compilations and individual legends as well as romance, debates, and mystical literature from medieval and early modern England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland. For researchers and advanced students of medieval literature and culture, the collection offers new insights into one of the central concepts of the late medieval period by considering sanctity first and foremost from the perspective of its literariness and literary potential.