Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Mini History Blogs: Richard Carew

On the 17th July 1555, Richard Carew, who was primarily known for his Survey of Cornwall, was born at Antony House, in Cornwall.
F E Halliday, an academic and author who published a modern edition of Carew's survey in 1953 writes:
"The importance of Richard Carew has never been appreciated. Few, indeed, are even aware of the writer who, while Shakespeare was writing for the London stage, was quietly at work in his Cornish country house. This neglect is the result of his own modesty, the remoteness of his dwelling, and the multitude of his great contemporaries in and about the capital, and not of any lack of merit; for Godfrey of Bulloigne is among the first great Elizabethan translations, The Examination of Men's Wits contains prose equal to anything of the period, A Herring's Tail is one of its most entertaining poems, and The Survey of Cornwall is a minor classic of our language. Most of our information about Carew, apart from what he himself tells us in the Survey, has been derived from Anthony Wood; and most of it is incorrect, partly because he confuses Carew with his eldest son, another Richard. Fortunately, there is a model muniment room at Antony House which includes numerous official and legal documents, and two invaluable manuscript books by the second Richard, largely autobiographical, but incorporating much material about his father."

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