Wild Man of Orford

wmorfby Allan Drummond
Woodcuts by James Dodds


The Suffolk coast has a curious history – much of it shaped quite literally by the sea, for perhaps nowhere else in the country has tide and current changed and moulded the shore so much. Whole towns have disappeared into the sea leaving only legends, whilst others – like Orford – have become almost land-locked by vast heaps and spits of shingle. Orford, with its twelfth century castle can claim one of the coast’s most curious pieces of history – the story of a wild man captured in the nets of local fishermen. Ralph of Coggeshall, writing in the ‘Chronicon Anglicanum’ in 1200 describes briefly, but very vividly the events:

‘In the time of King Henry II, when Bartholemew de Glanville was in charge of the castle at Orford, it happened that some fishermen, fishing in the sea there, caught in their nets a merman…’


Allan Drummond studied illustration at the Royal College of Art at the same time as James and has since built up a formidable international reputation as an author and illustrator of children’s books such as “The Willow Pattern Story” (North-South Books) and “Odysseus and the Wooden Horse” (Orchard Books), “Moby Dick”, “Casey Jones’, and “Liberty!” (Farrar Straus and Giroux).

Jardine Press Ltd 2015 (4th ed.)
(first edition 1995)
200 x 200mm
Paperback: £7.95
ISBN 978-0-9926877-5-5