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Robert Morton Nance

robert morton nance
Robert Morton Nance 1873–1959 was a leading authority on the Cornish language, nautical archaeologist, and joint founder of the Old Cornwall Society

Nance was born in Cardiff to Cornish parents He wrote many books and pamphlets on the Cornish language, including a Cornish dictionary, which is a standard work, and edited magazines and pamphlets about Cornwall, including Old Cornwall, the journal of the Federation of Old Cornwall Societies Nance was also a nautical archaeologist of distinction and was an originator of the Society for Nautical Research His insight and learning were displayed in his book Sailing-ship Models which appeared in 1924 He studied art in Britain and France and was both a painter and a skilled craftsman


  • 1 Chronology of his life
  • 2 Selected list of works
  • 3 See also
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links

Chronology of his lifeedit

  • 1873: He was born in Cardiff
  • 1898: He wrote "The Merry Ballad of the Cornish Pasty"1
  • 1906: He moved from Wales and settled at Nancledra near St Ives, Cornwall
  • 1911: He jointly founded the Society for Nautical Research
  • 1920: Together with Henry Jenner, he founded the first Old Cornwall Society at St Ives
  • 1924: The Federation of Old Cornwall Societies was established
  • 1925: The Federation established the periodical Old Cornwall
  • 1928: He jointly founded the Gorsedh Kernow, which was inaugurated at Boscawen-Un, where he took the bardic name Mordon 'Sea Wave'
  • 1929: He published Cornish for All using the Unified Cornish spelling system
  • 1951 - 1955: He was President of the Royal Institution of Cornwall for 1951 - 19552
  • 1959: He died and was buried at St Senara's churchyard, Zennor3

Selected list of worksedit

  • 1912: Speight, E E; Nance, R Morton 1912-01-01 Britain's Sea Story Henry Frowde  ASIN B000LQ60UM
  • 1923: A Glossary of Celtic Words in Cornish Dialect Falmouth: Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society
  • 1924: Sailing-ship Models: a selection from European and American collections with introductory text London: Halton and Truscott Smith photographs
    • ---do---2nd rev ed London; New York: Halton, 1949
    • Classic Sailing-ship Models in Photographs Reprinted Dover Publications, Mineola, NY, 2000 ISBN 0-486-41249-0
  • 1925- : Old Cornwall, as editor and contributor
    • Articles in Old Cornwall, including "The Cornish Language in the Seventeenth Century", in: Old Cornwall; vol VI, no 1
  • 1955: Cornish-English Dictionary Federation of Old Cornwall Societies ISBN 0-902660-05-5
  • 1956: The Cledry Plays: drolls of Old Cornwall for village acting and home reading Federation of Old Cornwall Societies B0000CJH1W clarification needed
  • 1961: Cornish for All: a guide to Unified Cornish Federation of Old Cornwall Societies B0000CKWG1 clarification needed
  • nd: A Guide to Cornish Place-names; with a list of the words contained in them Federation of Old Cornwall Societies Three editions, before 1971

See alsoedit

  • Richard Gendall
  • Ken George
  • Henry Jenner
  • Dolly Pentreath
  • Nicholas Williams


  1. ^ Hall, Stephen 2001 The Cornish Pasty Nettlecombe: Agre Books ISBN 0-9538000-4-0
  2. ^ Brian Murdoch, "Nance, Robert Morton 1873-1959", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 15 Nov 2007
  3. ^ Robert Morton Nance 1873-1959; Find a Grave
  • Obituary in The Times, May 28, 1959

External linksedit

  • What we stand for — Old Cornwall 1:1, April 1925
  • Setting Cornwall on its Feet: Robert Morton Nance 1873-1959
  • Robert Morton Nance Mordon at the website of Gorseth Kernow

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