Cornwall’s First Golden Age
From Arthur to the Normans
Cornish and Celtic Alternatives Series Volume 1
ISBN 978 0 9935344 4 7
In Cornwall's First Golden Age Bernard Deacon gives us a groundbreaking interpretation of the history of Cornwall between the departure of the Romans and the arrival of the Normans. A period that was not a 'dark age' for Cornwall, but something of a golden age, when 'Cornubia', with its centre at Tintagel, exerted control over Devon and parts of Somerset, and established colonies in Brittany.
When this kingdom collapsed it was replaced by a decentralised society with elusive kings, light lordship, village-level decision-making and a key role for the Church.
After a century of warfare with an expansionist Anglo-Saxon Wessex, Cornwall wasn't simply incorporated into the emerging English state. Instead, a culture that embodied dreams of Arthur and former glories maintained its unique identity and laid the foundations for future golden ages.
Bernard Deacon taught for the Open University and the WEA before becoming Senior Lecturer at Exeter University's Institute of Cornish Studies. He is the author of a number of books and articles on Cornwall, including Cornwall: A Concise History.
He lives in the heart of Cornwall and devotes his retirement to research and writing, while maintaining a Cornish Studies resources website at bernarddeacon.wordpress.com