Uncommon Ground

Dominick Tyler

An enchanting visual glossary of the British landscape.

3 in stock

Date Published
All orders are sent via Royal Mail and are tracked: choose from standard or premium delivery.

An enchanting visual glossary of the British landscape: photographs and stories which take the reader from the waterlogged fens to the white sands of the Western Isles.

‘Out . . . over the hill and then down the dip and through some lumpy bits.’ This was how Dominick Tyler used to describe the places he roamed during his childhood in rural Cornwall. Vague generalities were good enough then, but later he felt a more precise, more detailed language must exist, precisely because he needed it to do what people must have needed it to do for millennia: give directions, tell a story or find a place.

And so he began collecting words for landscape features, words like jackstraw, zawn, clitter and cowbelly, shivver and swag, tolmen and tor. Words that are as varied, rich and poetic as the landscapes they describe. Many of these words for our landscape are falling into obscurity, some endure only by haunting place-names and old maps. Here Dominick Tyler gathers them into an enchanting visual glossary of the British landscape.

On facing pages are photographs and stories touching on geology, literature, topography, folklore and a time when our ancestors read the lines on the land as fluently as text. Taking us from the waterlogged fens to the whitesands of the Western Isles, this full-colour book is a rare delight.

Critic Reviews

A beautiful and constantly surprising celebration of landscape and way we understand it. A witty and unfailingly fascinating guide, Dominick Tyler takes us to the hidden corners of Britain and the overlooked gems in our language ... Wonderful.

Patrick Barkham
Critic Reviews

This is an astonishing book of heart-wrenching beauty, which will re-ignite your enchantment with the natural world.

George Monbiot
Critic Reviews

Tyler's stunning images and explanations are a timely reminder of just how urgently we need to recover our older, deeper bonds with nature.

Adam Thorpe
Critic Reviews

A beautiful, enriching celebration of this island's tongues and topography.

Owen Sheers

Dominick Tyler grew up in rural Cornwall. After studying philosophy at UCL he became a documentary photographer. He has worked for the Guardian, the Independent, Le Monde and Médecins Sans Frontières among many others. In his personal work, Tyler frequently explores the relationships between people and their environment – his ten-year project ‘The Edge of Two Worlds’ documented the changing…

Read More