`A book worth reading' Andrew Marr, Sunday Times
The Debatable Land was an independent territory which used to exist between Scotland and England. At the height of its notoriety, it was the bloodiest region in Great Britain, fought over by Henry VIII, Elizabeth I and James V. After the Union of the Crowns, most of its population was slaughtered or deported and it became the last part of the country to be brought under the control of the state. Today, its history has been forgotten or ignored.
When Graham Robb moved to a lonely house on the very edge of England, he discovered that the river which almost surrounded his new home had once marked the Debatable Land's southern boundary. Under the powerful spell of curiosity, Robb began a journey - on foot, by bicycle and into the past - that would uncover lost towns and roads, reveal the truth about this maligned patch of land and result in more than one discovery of major historical significance.
Rich in detail and epic in scope, The Debatable Land takes us from a time when neither England nor Scotland could be imagined to the present day, when contemporary nationalism and political turmoil threaten to unsettle the cross-border community once more. Writing with his customary charm, wit and literary grace, Graham Robb proves the Debatable Land to be a crucial, missing piece in the puzzle of British history.
Includes a 16-page colour plate section.
Graham Robb was born in Manchester in 1958 and is a former Fellow of Exeter College, Oxford. He has published widely on French literature and history. His 2007 book The Discovery of France won both the Duff Cooper and Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prizes. For Parisians (2010) the City of Paris awarded him the Grande Medaille de la Ville de Paris. He lives on the English-Scottish border.
Section - i: List of Illustrations Section - ii: List of Figures Section - iii: A Guide to Pronunciation Unit - 1: PART ONE Chapter - 1: Hidden Places Chapter - 2: Outpost Chapter - 3: Panic Button Chapter - 4: The True and Ancient Border Chapter - 5: `The Sewer of Abandoned Men' Chapter - 6: Mouldywarp Chapter - 7: Beachcombing Unit - 2: PART TWO Chapter - 8: Blind Roads Chapter - 9: Harrowed Chapter - 10: `Loveable Custumis' Chapter - 11: Accelerated Transhumance Chapter - 12: Skurrlywarble Chapter - 13: Exploratores Chapter - 14: Windy Edge Chapter - 15: `In Tymis Bigane' Unit - 3: PART THREE Chapter - 16: 'Stob and Staik' Chapter - 17: `Rube, Burne, Spoyll, Slaye, Murder annd Destrewe' Chapter - 18: The Final Partition Chapter - 19: Hector of ye Harlawe Chapter - 20: Scrope Chapter - 21: Tarras Moss Chapter - 22: `A Factious and Naughty People' Chapter - 23: Silence Unit - 4: PART FOUR Chapter - 24: Graticules Chapter - 25: The Kingdom of Selgovia Chapter - 26: `Arthur' Chapter - 27: The Great Caledonian Invasion Chapter - 28: Polling Stations Chapter - 29: No Man's Land Chapter - 30: The River Section - iv: Appendix Section - v: Chronology Section - vi: Notes Section - vii: Works Cited Index - viii: General Index Index - ix: Geographical Index Acknowledgements - x: Acknowledgements