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Mudlark'd

The first illustrated book on mudlarking that tells the captivating stories of forgotten people through objects recovered from the river Thames.

Combining insights from 200 eclectic objects discovered on the Thames foreshore, meticulous historical research and contextual illustrations, Mudlark’d uncovers the hidden histories of forgotten people from all over the world. Beginning in each case with a particular find, Malcolm Russell tells the stories of the people who owned, made or used such objects, revealing the habits, customs and crafts not only of those living in London but also of those passing through, from continental Europe, the Americas, Africa, Asia and Australia.

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£25.00
In stock

More details

Dimensions 26.2 x 2.6 x 18.4cm
Fabric & material Hardback
No. of Pages 244
SKU 12092639

Delivery & returns information

Service Update (updated 19 March 2020)

We want to make sure your order reaches you as safely as possible. Therefore, due to the outbreak of COVID-19, all orders will be dispatched once the RA has reopened. We will be in touch once the RA has reopened and once your order has been dispatched. 

During this period our Returns Policy will be extended. For any order queries, please Contact Us

Free UK delivery on orders £50 and over

International delivery is based on weight and delivery country, and will be calculated at Checkout

Enjoy free shipping on all UK orders above £50. For orders below £50, shipping is £5.95. International shipping costs will be calculated at checkout.

For more information please refer to our Delivery Info and Returns & Refunds pages.

Updated 19 May 2020

We are delivering! Enjoy free shipping on orders above £50. £5.95 P&P for orders below £50. International delivery will be calculated at Checkout. The Royal Academy is temporarily closed, Collection is not available at this time.

For any questions talk to us

Product story

In the 18th and 19th centuries London was the busiest port in the world, exchanging goods, ideas, people and power with every continent. The Thames long acted as London’s water source, shipyard, thoroughfare and rubbish dump. Its banks have been densely packed with taverns, brothels, markets and workplaces, and scavengers – known as mudlarks - have scoured them since at least the 18th century. Consequently, the Thames today offers a repository of intriguing objects that evoke ways of life long forgotten. A delicate bone hair pin uncovers the story of Roman ornatrices - enslaved hairdressers. A counterfeit coin reveals the heritage of millions of Australians. Glass beads expose the brutal dynamics of the transatlantic slave trade. Clay tobacco pipes uncover the lives of Edwardian women parachutists and Victorian magicians. A scrap of Tudor cloth illuminates the stories of Dutch and French religious refugees.

The book also includes a primer, giving step-by-step advice on how to mudlark on tidal rivers and how to identify commonly made finds.

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