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  Title: The Journal of William Dowsing: Iconoclasm in East Anglia during the English Civil War

Author: William Dowsing, edited by Trevor Cooper with contributions and essays by John Blatchly, John Morrill, Sue Sadler and Robert Walker.

Date published: 2001

Status: in print

Price: GBP 50.00 (35.00 on

What is it? Dowsing's journal of his 1644 iconoclastic tour through Suffolk and Cambridgeshire, published in full for the first time ever, together with dozens of articles about aspects of the man and his deeds.

What's it like? Allington Aug 27. In the church was Peter pictured, and crucified with his heel upward. And there was John Baptist; and ten more superstitious pictures, & Paul and another superstitious picture in the church - 5s. (Athelington)

What's good about it? Absolutely compulsive and fascinating. Cooper follows each entry with a description of the church as it is today, including any surviving evidence of Dowsing's visit, as well as of other earlier iconoclasm. The essays are well-researched and most compelling; there are extensive appendices, and over the 550 pages of the book it comes together like a great detective story.

What's bad about it? It is expensive (although the price on amazon is a bit of a bargain) and could do with a decent fold-out map with all the places Dowsing visited marked on it.

Overall rating: 5/5

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