Although the previous chapters were concerned with travel abroad, there was naturally also a tradition in the British Isles of travel within one’s own country, such as the local pilgrimage to destinations like Canterbury. However, home tours did not come into fashion until relatively late; as John Edmund Vaughan (1974, p. 54) suggests, the Napoleonic Wars encouraged this kind of journey in Britain because they made it difficult for Britons to travel on the Continent.1 Thus accounts of domestic travel are initially significantly fewer in number compared with those relating to the Grand Tour. ‘Before the 1750s’, writes Charles Batten (1978, p. 93), ‘surprisingly few Englishmen of wealth and social position had traveled extensively throughout their own country, and fewer still had described their homeland in accounts of their travels.’ Notwithstanding, the British Isles were travelled with a specific historical and geographical interest as early as the sixteenth century: The habit of touring their native land began in the sixteenth century; it is a Tudor phenomenon. Better roads and improved cartography were making travel easier and safer, but the motive force was pride in the greatness of Tudor England, and a curiosity both in the historic roots of that greatness and its contemporary manifestations’ (Moir, 1964, p. xiv).


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© Catherine Matthias 2000

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  • Barbara Korte

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