History of Guernsey (Berry)

From Jerripedia
Jump to: navigation, search

William Berry's History of Guernsey was published by subscription in Guernsey in 1815. Although the first major work of its type, it was widely criticised.

Its full title was:

The History of the Island of Guernsey, part of the Ancient Duchy of Normandy, from the remotest period of antiquity to the year 1814, containing an interesting account of the island; its government, civil, military and ecclesiastical; Peculiar Privileges, Customs, &c; with particulars of the neighbouring islands of Alderney, Serk and Jersey, Compiled from the valuable collections of the late Henry Budd Esq, His Majesty's Receiver and more than Thirty Years Resident in the Island (collected by him for the purpose of publication which his Death prevented), as well as from Authentic Documents, Royal Charters, Public Records and Private Manuscripts, by William Berry, Late of the College of Arms, London.

It appeared that Berry had indeed worked at the College of Arms, but had been dismissed for falsifying pedigrees, which further discredited his work.

For example, Jonathan Duncan wrote in his Guernsey and Jersey Magazine in 1836:

… that scamp Berry, who had the impudence to put forth a huge quarto of twaddle and personal spleen as a “History of Guernsey”, to which was added a fulsome appendix of ancestral honours and pedigrees of a few families, who were his dupes, for everyone knows, who has the slightest acquaintance with history, that very many native families, now poor, owing to the subdivision of land, can boast as long a Norman lineage, as the richest fundholders now, or then, living in the island.

Further Reading


Personal tools
other Channel Islands
contact and contributions

Please support Jerripedia with a donation to our hosting costs