Author Archives: Peter Moore

Endeavour, Launch(es), John Sandoe and BBC History

Today marks a quarter of a millennium since HM Bark Endeavour left Plymouth to begin her voyage to the South Seas. Precisely 250 years ago (in an hour or two’s time) Joseph Banks set down the first of his many journal entries: 25 August 1768 After having waiting in this place ten days, the ship, […]

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Finished copies, Mary Soames Award, an audiobook and Michael Palin

There’s nothing like a book deadline to accelerate time. It hardly seems a moment since I set to work in the British Library in the summer of 2015; or I was paddling about Endeavour Cove in Queen Charlotte’s Sound a few months later; or standing on the foreshore of the Tūranganui River on New Zealand’s […]

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Historical Miscellany #42 – A suggestion for a female administration (1766)

Women in (Georgian) politics A hundred years after women won the right to vote in Britain, here’s a related snippet from a few centuries earlier. In the mid-1760s the public were exasperated by their politicians. The Treaty of Paris (1763) that brought an end to the Seven Years’ War had left Britain in a seemingly […]

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Oddingley – John Barnett’s Pigeon House?

A brief post about an old book. It is the best part of a decade since I was writing about the misdeeds of the Oddingley farmers in the summer of 1806. But recently that murderous tale was brought back to mind when I chanced upon the above picture of a half-timbered ‘pigeon house’. This building […]

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Endeavour: a new book

I have been quiet on here for some time but I have not been idle. I am just putting the finishing touches to a new book, Endeavour: the Ship and the Attitude that Changed the World. It is going to be published by Chatto in the UK on 23 August and in the US shortly […]

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Historical Miscellany #41 – A Sea Monster discovered in Porthleven, Cornwall (1786)

(As reported in the Hereford Journal, Thursday 12 October 1786 – Illustration from The Monsters of the Deep, 1875) A description of Sea Monster found in Cornwall The following comes authenticated from a Gentleman of Morillian in Cornwall. A JUST and particular description of a very curious and most surprising sea monster driven on shore […]

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Historical Miscellany #40 – Snowball the Greyhound [1829]

I was cheered to find out last week that “the best greyhound there ever was”, according to Bell’s Life in London, was called Snowball and came from the pretty village of Wold Newton in the east riding of Yorkshire. This is just a few wolds away from where my mother grew up and I was […]

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Historical Miscellany #39 – Damn’d Eyes [1766]

Image: A field in Worcestershire From Adams Weekly Courant, 25 March 1766, taken from The Gloucester Journal “We have an account of a very extraordinary instance of Divine vengeance that happened about a week ago at Chalford in this county. One Richard Parsons, a young man of that place, was playing at cards, and he […]

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Historical Miscellany #38 – An Essay on Blockheads [1802]

(Image: “Punch Cures the Gout” by James Gillray) (The following essay we copy with much approbation from the New York Evening Post) A blockhead is neither an ideot, nor madman. He is one who goes on through the broad road of life with the rest of mankind carrying a load of follies at his back, […]

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Podcasts: The Weather Experiment

Clouds over Filey Bay -June 2015 It’s been a busy/brilliant summer so far with trips to literary festivals at Hay on Wye, Greenwich, York, Harrogate and Buxton. Thank you to anyone who has ventured out to listen to me talking about Robert FitzRoy, clouds and meteorology. There’s a few more things coming up before I […]

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