Cornish wrestling

Cornish wrestling (Cornish: Omdowl Kernewek[1]) is a form of wrestling that has been established in Cornwall for many centuries and possibly longer. It is similar to the Breton Gouren wrestling style. It is colloquially known as "wrasslin’"[2][3] in the Cornish dialect of English; historically, this usage is attested by Chaucer,[4] Shakespeare[5] and Drayton.[6]

Cornish wrestling
Gerry and Ashley Cawley.JPG
Gerry and Ashley Cawley wrestling at Pendennis Castle, 6 May 2002
Country of originCornwall
CreatorCornish people
Olympic sportNo

The referee is known as a 'stickler',[7] and it is claimed that the popular meaning of the word as a 'pedant' originates from this usage.[8]

Cornish wrestling is a national sport of Cornwall, which spread throughout the British Isles and then, along with the Cornish diaspora, to such places as the United States, Australia, Mexico, New Zealand and South Africa.

Introduction to the rules of competitionEdit

The objective of Cornish wrestling is to throw ones opponent and cause them to land as flat as possible on the back. Each of the wrestlers wears a ‘jacket’ of tough make and material, enabling them to better grip their opponent. Grabbing of the wrists or fingers is forbidden as well as holding below the waist. All holds are to be taken upon the jacket, although the flat of the hand is allowed to be used to push or deflect an opponent.[9][10] Three sticklers watch and control each bout, keeping score of points.[11]

Four pins are located on the back of a wrestler, two at the shoulders and two just above the buttocks. A wrestler scores points by throwing their opponent onto their back, the number of pins hitting the floor being the number of points scored. If a wrestler manages to score with three or four pins this is called a ‘Back’ and the bout is then finished, with the throwing wrestler as the winner.[12] The sticklers each raise their sticks when they perceive a Back has been achieved. A Back may be awarded by majority, i.e. by two out of the three stickers. If a Back is not awarded, the winner is the wrestler with the most accumulated points within the time limit.[11]


John Cawley throwing Chris French at Demonstration at Robby Richards Museum Opening - CWA Event 13–14 May 2006.

Cornish wrestling has a long history, and Geoffrey of Monmouth suggests in Historia Regum Britanniae, of c. 1139 that Corineus wrestled a Cornish giant, Gogmagog or Goemagot upon the cliff top known as Lamm Goemagot.

Thomas Hoby writes that in 1551 at Chastenbriant the French king showed my Lord Marquess of Northampton "great pleasure and disport...sometime with his great boisterlie Bretons wrastling with my lordes yemen of Cornwall, who had much to do to gete the upper hande of them."[13]

Some of the earliest written evidence for wrestling in the West Country comes from a 1612 poem entitled "Poly-Olbion" by Michael Drayton, which gives the names of some Cornish Wrestling throws. Drayton also published a poem in 1627 called The Battle of Agincourt, which concerns the 1415 battle. The poem states that the Cornish men who accompanied Henry V into battle held a banner of two Cornish wrestlers.

Cornish, Devon and Breton wrestlers have long taken part in inter-Celtic matches since at least 1402 and these still occasionally continue. In early times Cornish and Devonian wrestlers often had matches against each other though the rules they followed were not the same. One of these was the notable match between Richard Parkyn and the Devonian John Jordan.

In 1654, Oliver Cromwell and many of his privy council were reported as watching c100 Cornishmen wrestling in Hyde Park, presenting "...great agility of body and most neat and exquisite wrestling at every meeting of one with the other, which was ordered with such dexterity, that it was to show more the strength, vigour and nimbleness of their bodies, than to endanger their persons."[14]

Wrastling is as full of manliness, more delightful and less dangerous (than hurling).... for you shall hardly find an assembly of boyes in Devon and Cornwall, where the most untowardly amongst them will not as readily give you a muster of this exercise as you are prone to require it.

17th century historian Richard Carew, [15]

Charles II, along with "a world of lords" and many other spectators, watched a series of wrestling matches in St James' Park in 1669, with a purse of £1000, which saw the "Western men" win.[16]

His Highness York’s great Duke beheld the same
With other persons of renowned fame
Brave Cornishmen, you are to be commended
And will be so until the world is ended.[17]

Sir Thomas Parkyns (1664–1741), known as the Wrestling Baronet, was a devotee of wrestling and organised an annual wrestling match in Bunny Park (prize a gold-laced hat). These matches continued until 1810. His book on the subject The Inn-Play: or, the Cornish Hugg-Wrestler was published in 1713 and reprinted many times.[18]

A contest at Bodmin in 1811 attracted 4,000 spectators, but thereafter interest in the sport waned. James Gerry (of Linkinhorne) and Samuel Rundle (Plymouth) fought for a £20 purse and the championship of Cornwall in 1883 at Liskeard. Lasting just over an hour, the match ended in a draw in the 19th round following Rundle tearing leg muscles. Gerry was reported in The Cornishman newspaper to have vanquished all the best men in America as well as many men in Cornwall, Rundle had beaten nearly all the wrestling men in Devon and Cornwall.[19]

In 1927 William Tregoning Hooper (Bras y Golon) agreed with the Breton Dr. Cottonec of Quimperle that there should be annual wrestling tournaments in which both Cornish and Breton wrestlers would compete. In 1932, the Duke of Cornwall helped fund the competing Cornish wrestlers.[20]

In the 1970s Truro Cathedral School was teaching Cornish wrestling as part of its physical education programme and was the only school in Cornwall to do so.[21]


There is an ancient custom whereby sticklers of a tournament would appear at church the following Sunday wearing "Christys" with streamers.[22]

There are multiple stories of women being capable wrestlers, even more than 200 years ago. For example, Caroline who was taught wrestling by her father and in turn taught her son Joel Andrewartha, who went on to become one of the best wrestlers in Cornwall and beat Polkinhorne.[23][24] Another example is "Lizzie Poor Jack", who threw John Lillywhite in a wrestling-bout at Clowance. She was a miner who dressed in men's clothes[25][26]

During a match, wrestlers shake hands before every hitch.[27]

Prior to the mid 1800s, competitors had to renounce the use of magic before the start of a tournament.[28]

Traditionally wrestlers would challenge each other to wrestling matches by throwing their hat into the ring. The idiom may come from this practice.[27][29][30]

In Cornwall, youngsters used to play the game of "shuffle hats and wrastle", where they would throw their hats into a ring, with their owners wrestling off in accordance with the pairing of the hats.[31][32]

There had been a custom of "begging the ring" whereby old or injured wrestlers would walk around the ring begging for alms. This was replaced by a wrestlers' benevolent fund in 1926 and then by the welfare state.[33][32]

Wrestling matches were once played in churchyards, but in 1297 the Bishop of Exeter banned it from such places in Devon and Cornwall. [34]

In late Victorian times women were briefly banned from matches, as men often wrestled in their long johns, which was not considered respectable.[34]

Gold laced hats were often used as first place prizes for Cornish wrestling tournaments. It was said that wearers of such hats were immune from the attentions of the press gang.[22]

Wrestlers who were knocked senseless in bouts would often be treated by being "bled" on site if there was a doctor at hand.[35]

In the mid 1800s though to the early 1900s, extra trains were laid on going to and from towns where Cornish wrestling tournaments were being held.[36][37] In the early 1900s this was extended to extra bus services.[38]

Until 1927 there was no time limit for Cornish wrestling matches and there are records of matches taking many hours and even having to be reconvened the next day.[39] Note that in 1927 the rule became best 2 falls in 20 minutes, but there was much resistance to this change as it was perceived that often the worse player won these matches.[40] This was changed to the current rules of two, ten minute, rounds with points being used to determine the winner if no back is scored.[41] However, his time limit lapsed in the 1940s, was proposed to be reinstated in 1956,[42] but was only reinstated in 1967.[43]

In the early 1800s there were two distinct styles of wrestling. Wrestlers who fought in the Western style included Parkyn and wrestlers who fought with the Eastern style included the Truscotts. This distinction had disappeared by the end of the 1800s.[44]

The wrestler's mottoEdit

Gwari hweg yw gwari teg[45][46][47]

English Translation: Fair play is sweet play.[48][49][50]

The wrestler's oathEdit

War ow enor ha war enor ow bro, my a de omdewlel heb trayturi na garowder, hag avel oll ow lelder my a ystynn ow leuv dhe’m kontrari. Gans geryow ow hendasow: “gwari hweg yw gwari teg”.

English Translation: On my honour and the honour of my country, I swear to wrestle without treachery or brutality and in token of my sincerity I offer my hand to my opponent. In the words of my forefathers: “gwari hweg yw gwari teg”.[48][50][51]

Governing bodiesEdit

There has been significant disagreement, over time, as to which were the ruling governing bodies in the sport and also differences in the precise nature of the rules. This has resulted in simultaneous claimants for world, national and regional titles.[52]

Governing bodies outside CornwallEdit

The Cornwall and Devon wrestling Society (also known as the Devon and Cornwall wrestling Society[53][54]) was formed in 1752, running tournaments and matches in London, often at Hackney Wick. In 1868 the Prince of Wales was still the patron to the society.[55][56] Open competitions were held, awarding significant belts and prizes often funded by the patron, but only natives of Cornwall were permitted to compete for the Great Duke of Cornwall cup.[57]

The Devon and Cornish wrestling Society was formed in 1849.[58]

The Western Counties Wrestling Association was formed in 1877[59]

Worldwide, various regional bodies have governed local Cornish wrestling tournaments or matches. Examples include:

  • The Royal Marine Light Infantry for a tournament in Japan (1872);[60]
  • The Ivey Athletic Club for tournaments in Michigan, United States;[61]
  • The Brotton wrestling committee for Cornish wrestling in Yorkshire;[62]
  • The Bendigo Amateur Wrestling Association in Bendigo, Australia;[63]
  • The Cornish Association of South Africa;[64]
  • Taunton Athletic club in Somerset;[65]
  • St Budeaux and District Wrestling Committee for local tournaments in Devon;[66]
  • The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry in India;[67]
  • The Cornish Porcupine wrestling club in Canada;[68]
  • Pachuca Athletic Club in Mexico.[69]
  • Morro Velho mines in Brazil.[70]

Governing bodies inside CornwallEdit

The different regional associations within Cornwall merged into the Cornwall County Wrestling Association ("CCWA") in September 1923, under the patronage of Commander Sir Edward Nicholl and presidency of Lord St Levan,[71] to help standardize the rules, facilitate the competing of Duchy championships, mitigate the risk of clashing tournaments and promote Cornish Wrestling throughout Cornwall and indeed Worldwide.[9] When the CCWA was formed there were only 9 affiliated local associations, but by 1925 there were over 50.[72][71] Note that the Newquay and Port Isaac associations indicated that they wanted nothing to do with the CCWA.[73]

In 1928, William Tregonning Hooper initiated inter-celtic tournaments between the CCWA and its counterpart in Brittany, as the similarities of Breton and Cornish wrestling are sufficient for successful competitions to be held between the two.[74]

In 1931, the CCWA had financial difficulties and the belts and cups were seized by the bank. As a result, belts and cups were not awarded.[75][76]

In 1932, the CCWA was refinanced, with help from the London Cornish Association,[77] Federation of Old Cornwall Societies,[78][77] Viscount Clifden,[79] the Western Morning News[79] and the Duke of Cornwall,[77][79][78] and the belts and cups were retrieved from the bank.[12][9][80] In 1933 the CCWA changed its name to the Cornish Wrestling Association ("CWA")[80] and adopted a rule to limit rounds to 15 minutes.[39][81]

In 1933 various local wrestling associations had competitions unaffiliated to the CWA, culminating with St Mawgan holding a championship of Cornwall, "under the old Cornish wrestling rules".[82]

The East Cornwall Wrestling Federation ("ECWF") was formed in 1934, at least in part to hold competitions under more traditional rules (the time limit being a key issue).[9][83][84][85] The ECWF also complained that the CWA had preferred placing championship tournaments in West Cornwall and had preferred selecting wrestlers from West Cornwall to represent Cornwall in the inter-celtic competition.[86] The ECWF held rival championship titles of heavyweight, middleweight and lightweight champion in the "Old Cornish Style".[12][9] In 1934, the CWA initially suspended wrestlers involved with ECWF competitions.[52] This rule was suspended in 1936, but re-instigated it in 1938.[87][88]

In 1946, the ECWF was absorbed by the CWA, who have overseen almost all tournaments since.[89][90][91] A current example of an exception to this is the annual St Mawgan tournament.

In 2004 the CWA became affiliated with the British Wrestling Association.[92]

Patrons of the CCWA/CWAEdit

Notable people who were also Cornish wrestlersEdit

Notable Cornish wrestlersEdit

Historically, there were simultaneous claimants to world, national and regional titles in Cornish wrestling. This was driven, at least in part, by there not being agreement concerning the definitive governing bodies in the sport until the 1920s.

Some of these wrestlers also competed in other wrestling styles, or in matches where multiple styles were used.


  • Jesse Liddicoat was a very strong immigrant Cornish wrestler.[115]
  • William Hodge was an Australian Cornish wrestling champion in the late 1840s and early 1850s.[116][117]
  • William Kneebone (1829-1906), was recognised Australian Cornish wrestling champion in the 1850s.[118][119] He once came home and caught a burglar. He explained the battered state of the burglar to the bench by saying he had given him a Flying Mare.[120]
  • Charles Corse (1825-1872), was about 6 feet and 15 stone and was a champion Cornish wrestler. He was a blacksmith and claimed to have thrown Gundry before emigrating. He was murdered by being shot in the back of the head.[121][122] He was champion of Victoria.[123]
  • Dick Bray, known as "Curley" and weighing about 11 stone, was a champion Australian Cornish wrestler of the 1860s.[124]
  • John H Bray, known as Dancing Bray", was a champion wrestler, winning an important competition in 1868.[125]
  • G Philips (1846-1922), was a noted Cornish wrestler in his youth.[126]
  • John Thomas from Eaglehawk was heavyweight champion of Australia for many years. His wrestling career spanned from 1871 to 1899.[12][127]
  • Stephens was the lightweight Cornish wrestling champion of Australia in 1879.[127]
  • Jack Tamblyn (1849-?), was a champion Cornish wrestler.[128]
  • John Walker (1857-1913), known as " Wrastling Jack", was Cornish wrestling champion of the Barrier towards the end of the 1800s. In later life he suffered from lead poisoning.[129][130][131]
  • Thomas was champion Cornish wrestler of Australia in 1884. He was previously Cumberland and Westmorland wrestling champion.[132]
  • Jacob Burrows was an Australian Cornish wrestling champion in 1887.[116]
  • W Williams was Australian Cornish wrestling champion in 1889.[133]
  • Henry Randall Neilson (1867-1925),[134] known as "Delhi Neilson" and the "Bendigo Boy", was Australian Cornish wrestling champion between 1889 and 1907,[135][136] weighing 10 st 7 lbs, who was said to have defeated over 400 opponents.[137] He was an Australian rules footballer. In 1909, he became middleweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa.[138] He was the Cornish wrestling champion of the Barrier in 1890[139] and 1891.[137]
  • Mons Victor was an Australian champion Cornish wrestler in 1898.[140][141]
  • Harry Pearce, was Australian champion Cornish wrestler in 1904.[142]
  • Dick Porter became middleweight wrestling champion of Australia, beating Delhi Neilson in 1906.[143]
  • Gavin Dickson from Sydney won the Australian Cornish wrestling championship in 2001 in front of 30,000 people at the Cornish festival in Moonta.[144]
  • Rundle was the 1907 champion of Australia, who also fought in South Africa.[145]


  • Fred Oberlander (1911-1996), was born in Vienna and fought successfully in various wrestling styles in Austria, Britain and Canada. He fought in Cornish wrestling tournaments in the 1940s.[146]


  • Roeder had a famous wrestling match with Schiller Williams in 1890s, which he lost.[147]



  • Quinn was Cornish wrestling champion of the Pacific coast in 1892.[148]
  • Ole Marsh had a well known match in 1899 with John Sugget for a purse of $2k.[149][150]
  • John Sugget had a well known match in 1899 with Ole Marsh for a purse of $2k.[149][150]
  • Joseph Martin, originally from Gulval, was Cornish wrestling champion of Toronto in 1906.[151]


  • John Goit was a friend of Richard Carew who states that during the reign of Elizabeth I, he had a claim to be the best wrestler in Cornwall.[152][153]
  • The Vicar of Lanteglos-by-Fowey was described in 1586 as "the best wrastler in Cornwall."[154][22]
  • Lyttelton Weynorth wrestled several times before Charles II, being introduced by the Earl of Radnor.[71][22][155] He was the champion wrestler of all England.[156][153]
  • Thomas Hosken of Cubert defeated Lyttelton Weynorth and was described as "the strongest man in the county."[71][22][155][153]
  • James Harris, of St Agnes, was commonly called "Skinner" and "beat all and sundry" and was the court wrestler of Charles II.[157] He "shortened his days by the sport".[155][153]
  • William Nott from St Gorran was a farmer who had much competition success at the end of the 1600s and was known as the "philosopher".[155][153]
  • Charles Dawe from St Gorran was referred to by Thomas Tonkin (1678–1742) as being without equal in the early 1700s.[9][158][155][153]
  • William Pascoe (1722-1808), the parish clark of Sithney for 60 years, was the champion of Cornwall for many years.[71][159][160]
  • Thomas Pearce, wrestled throughout Britain in the mid 1700s.[161]
  • Abel Werry (?-1824), from Liskeard was for many years the champion wrestler of Cornwall.[162]
  • Absalom Bennetts from Probus is described as having won well over 42 gold laced hats during the 18th century.[9][71][22] He won the Probus tournament seven years running.[163]
  • John Truscott (1766-1848), from Roche, was a champion Cornish wrestler, competing with an 'East Cornwall' style. He won a famous match with the Giant Jordan in 1813. His brothers, George (known as the 'Big Truscott')[164] and Diggory (known as 'Young Truscott'},[44] were also well known wrestlers.[44][165]
  • Richard Parkyn (1772-1855), weighing 16 and a half stone, was a champion wrestler from St Columb Major and was known as The Great Parkyn. He was champion of Cornwall in 1806 and it was said that he was undefeated 20 years thereafter.[166][92] He was dominant from 1795 through to 1811. [167]
  • John Collings (1783-1869) from St Minver was a celebrated wrestler in his early life.[168] He also had a famous wrestling brother called Thomas.[169]
  • James Polkinghorne (1788–1851)[170] born at St Keverne[32] was a champion wrestler who had a number of famous contests against Devon fighters, including Flower, Jackman (1816)[105] and Abraham Cann (1826), which drew very large crowds of spectators (c17,000).[9][171]
  • Abraham Bastard (1789-1868), born in St Teath, beat Polkinghorne in a famous match at St Kew in the 1820s.[172] He later became a preacher.[173][174]
  • Francis Olver had much success in the early 1800s, including at least once beating Abraham Cann, James Cann and Finney.[35][175] HIs brother also wrestled.[175]
  • James Warren from St Just was a famed Cornish wrestler, who became champion of Cornwall. He was known as 'Little Jem Warren' or 'Little Hercules' due to being 5 feet 7.5 inches high or 'Great Jem'[176] from having prodigious strength.[177][178] He distinguished himself in the rescue of survivors when the East Indiaman ship, "Kent" caught fire.[173]
  • Tom Nicholas was considered champion of the West of Cornwall and perhaps of all of Cornwall in 1835.[179] He trained Gundry and was known as "Tom Pike".[180]
  • Tom Magor from Breage was for some time All England Champion in the early 1800s.[180] He trained Gundry and was a miner at Wheal Vor.[180]
  • Captain Thomas Gundry (1816[180]-1888[181]), of Wendron, was 5 feet 9 inches high, weighed 178 lbs and was a very famous champion wrestler in the 1830s and 1840s. His father was "Boxer" Gundry and his mother was from the Giddles wrestling family. He was trained by Tom Magor and Tom Nicholas.[180] His wrestling record comprised at least 25 tournament wins and 5 second placements from tournaments in Cornwall, Devon and London.[9] He was 7 times Cornish champion.[182] He was the champion wrestler of all England.[183] He was called champion wrestler of the world in 1847.[184] He was married four times.[185][186] In 1870, along with a wrestler called White, Tom rescued six or seven lives from a raging sea.[187]
  • John Roberts (1820-1892), known as "Johnnah" or "John-a" and born at Newtown, Ludgvan, was as famous champion wrestler in the 1840s and 1850s, that more than once beat Gundry.[188][189] After one such occasion, at the Penzance tournament, he was marched from one end of the town to the other accompanied by the mayor, several dignitaries and a band. He was subsequently the "quiet and unobtrusive" landlord of the "Old Inn" at Gulval for 30 years.[180][190]
  • William Delbridge (1823-1886) was originally from St Agnes and was lightweight champion of Cornwall in 1857.[191] He then emigrated to Australia, where he was a respected stickler at many tournaments.[192] He became the owner of a well known vineyard.[192]
  • Captain Joseph Hodge (1824-1909) was champion of Cornwall in 1839[193][194] and London champion in 1848.[195][196]
  • William Couch Jeffery (1826-1899),[197] from Long Rock was champion of Cornwall for a quarter of a century including the 1840s and 1850s.[198][199][200] He won many prizes in Cornwall as well as London.[200] He was initially a miner and then a market gardener and fisherman.[197] He spent some time in Australia and it was said that he had beaten the Australian champion wrestler, who was an Irishman after walking 160 miles to the match.[201][200]
  • James Bullocke, from St Austell, was champion wrestler who was champion of Cornwall in 1860 having defeated Treglown.[202][203]
  • William Treglown (1827-1864) from Ludgvan, weighed between 200 lbs and 220 lbs,[180] was about 5ft 6in high[203] and was the champion of Cornwall in 1853,[204] 1854,[205] 1856,[206] 1858,[207][208] 1861[209] and 1862.[210] He won the London title in 1854[211] and 1859.[212] He won the West of England title in 1853.[213] He was the American champion in 1856.[206] He died of consumption in St Mewan.[214] He also wrestled in Europe.[215][216]
  • Joseph Menear (1838-?) was born in St Austell[217] and won the London Cornish wrestling title for over 10 years in a row[218] and won over 100 prizes, cups, belts and medals.[219]
  • William Pollard from Linkinhorne won many tournaments from the mid to late 1800s. He became champion of England. He was 6 feet 2 inches high and weighed 220 pounds.[220] He was champion of Cornwall for seven years to 1869.[221]
  • Samuel Rundle (1847[222]-?), of St Austell,[223] weighing 7 st 10 lbs and known as "Sammy Short",[224] was all England Cornish wrestling champion in 1874, retaining the title for 20 years.[225][226] He was champion of England in 1876[227] and in 1883 and in 1898 had been champion of England for "many years".[228][229] In 1884 he had been champion of Devon and Cornwall for 12 years.[230] Sam also wrestled successfully in the United States.[231][232][233]
  • Philip Hancock (1846-1927) of St Austell was the World Cornish Wrestling champion in 1884, winning the "open to the world" belt in Penzance. He was known as "Phep", "Phip" or the "fat'un".[234][235] He was 5ft 9in and won the champion belt of Devon and Cornwall, wrestling in front of the Prince of Wales. He claimed that he was never thrown or beaten in 28 years in competitions across the UK.[236] He helped build the Eddystone Lighthouse and the Wolf Rock Lighthouse.[237]
Philip Hancock Champion of the world 1884.
  • Captain Samuel Coombe (1849-?), from Bugle, known as "Sammy", was a very strong wrestler who had some famous bouts with Hancock, who said he was as good a wrestler as he ever faced.[238] He was heavyweight Cornish wrestling champion of Cornwall.[239][240][241] When Sammy ceased wrestling he became a renowned Methodist preacher after teaching himself to read and write from reading the bible.[242][243][241][240]
  • Richard Williams (1851-1892), born in Chacewater, 5 feet 6 inches high and weighing 144 lbs,[244] was known as 'Schiller Williams' after surviving the wreck of the Schiller and helping save some of the other few survivors. He was a well known, champion wrestler in Cornwall, the US, England, Northern Ireland, Bolivia and Mexico. [147][245] He was Western states champion in the US and was lightweight champion of Cornwall.[246] He died in Mexico.[147]
  • Thomas Stone (1852-1937) of St Austell, was a well known wrestler, who won over 20 tournaments in the mid to late 1800s. [247] He was wrestling champion of Cornwall in 1896[248] and 1899.[249] He wrestled in front of King Edward VII, who gave him a sovereign that he kept as a keepsake.[249] His brother Henry was also an accomplished wrestler and was champion of Cornwall in 1891 after Tom had been disqualified.[250][251] He was a worker in the china clay industry.[252]
Thomas Stone 1899: Cornish wrestling champion of Cornwall[249]
  • Thomas Bragg (1852-1924)[253] was born in Foxhole[253][254] and was champion of America in 1866,[255][227] 1876,[256] 1879,[257][258] 1880,[259] 1882,[260][261] and 1883.[262] He was champion of Cornwall in 1882.[263] He was champion of England in 1887.[264][265]
  • John Pearce (1859-1896), from Wendron and known as "Jack", was the champion of Cornwall in 1887 and held the title for 6 years. He won over 24 tournaments in England and the United States.[266][267] John also claimed to be world Cornish wrestling champion in 1884,[268] 1886,[269] 1887,[270][269][271] 1888,[270][272] 1889,[273] 1893[274] and in 1894.[275][276] He had brothers Nicholas[277] and Walter[278][279] who had some wrestling success.[277]
  • John Capell (1859-1932), from Talskiddy, St Columb, was heavyweight champion of Cornwall in 1890[280] and 1898[281][282] and Champion of the West of England in 1890.[283][284]
  • James Matthews, from Chapel Street, St Day,[285] was a champion wrestler, who is especially notable, since he only had one arm![286][287]
  • Jeffries from St Mewan was Cornish wrestling champion of America.[288]
  • Earnest Small, from Penzance, was West of England champion in 1906.[289][290] He was Cornish champion in 1906 defeating Sidney and Reuben Chapman.[291][292] He defeated Ahmed Madrali.[290]
  • Reuben Chaman (1881[293]-1930), known as "Reub", from the famous Chapman family of St Wenn that has won many titles throughout the last century, was champion of Cornwall from 1903 to 1910[294] and in 1914.[295][296] He was a rabbit trapper as a young man.[297][298]
  • Sidney Chapman (1889[293]-?), from the famous Chapman family of St Wenn that has won many titles throughout the last century, won the championship of Cornwall in 1903,[299] 1907,[300] 1912,[300][301][302] 1913,[300][303][302] 1919[304][305] and 1920.[306][307] He beat Tim Harrington in 1909[308] and was the middleweight champion of the US in 1910. He was awarded a medal by the Transvaal wrestling association in 1911 for his wrestling in South Africa[300] and was the champion of South Africa in 1912.[309][310]
  • Francis Gregory (1904-?), from Roche, was a champion Cornish wrestler in the 1920s and 1930s who won the heavyweight title 9 times in a row and the interceltic title 7 times in a row. He was champion of Britain in 1934. [311] He was a famous sportsman, being a professional wrestler and boxer, who played league and union rugby (including for England).[312] He participated in the first televised wrestling match and wrestled Billy Holland in a scene for the film "Lady of Pendower".[311]


  • Mustapha Hambdi was an Egyptian wrestler who competed in Cornish wrestling competitions in Britain in the 1920s.[313][314] He was middleweight champion of the world in catch as catch can wrestling.[315]


  • John Ridd, from Devon, held the championship belt for Devon and Cornwall in about 1685.[316]
  • Rev Richard Stevens (c1670-1727), fellow of King's College, Cambridge and proctor of the university, was a well known Cornish wrestler in the 17th century.[173]
  • Sir Thomas Parkyns (1664-1741) learnt his Cornish wrestling in Gray's Inn in London before writing one of the first books giving detailed instructions on hand to hand combat using Cornish wrestling techniques.[317]
  • John Coppe, known as "Little Cock", came from near Great Torrington, was about 5 feet 5 inches high and bow-legged and in the middle of the 18th century was champion throughout Devon, Somerset and Cornwall, for about 20 years.[318][319][320][155]
  • William Ford (1784-1874), from Zeal Monachorum, was a wrestler of great reputation in North Devon.[321]
  • John Jordan (1787-?), from Grantham[322] near Hatherleigh and known as "Giant Jordan"[323] or the "Devonshire Giant", was a famously massive champion wrestler from Devon who was 6 feet 4 inches tall. He fought in the early 1800s and had a series of famous matches with Cann.[171] He was champion of Devon in 1811[324] and 1812.[325][326] He also had famous matches with the Great Parkyn (1811) and John Truscott (1813), both of which he lost.[327][328][44]
  • William Wreford (1793[329]-1835[330]), who lived at Cheriton Cross between Okehampton and Exeter, was 5 feet 10 inches tall and was a sightless champion in the early 1800s. He was known as 'Blind Bill'.[320] He was always allowed a grip on his opponent's collar at the start of a hitch.[318][155]
  • John Bolt (1793-1875), from Cheriton Bishop, was a champion wrestler throughout Britain and was Cann's second in his fight with Polkinhorne.[331]
  • Charles Cleeve of Kenton[332] was champion of England in 1827.[332]
  • Charles Layton was the Norfolk champion from 1817 to 1827.[333][334]
  • Abraham Cann (1794[44]-1864) was born in Crediton[335] and was a famous wrestler who had an infamous wrestling match with James Polkinghorne.[9] He was the champion wrestler of England.[336] It was claimed that he became champion of the world.[337][178] His father, Robert, and brothers James, Robert, George and William were also successful wrestlers.[338][35][337]
  • Clargo (also spelt Claggo in the newspapers)[339] claimed to be the Berkshire Cornish wrestling champion in 1828.[340]
  • James Truscott (1804-1891),[341] born on West Street, Tavistock[342] and often called 'Jemmy',[343] weighing 10st (63 kg),[343] claimed to be the English lightweight champion in 1845.[344] He later managed many wrestling matches and tournaments in London and tended to open the events with a shout of "A hat! A hat!".[345] He was also a boxer[341] and was one of the founders of the Patriotic Club at Clerkenwell Green.[342]
  • William Chapple from Bishop's Nympton,[346] was champion of Devon in 1841,[347] 1844,[348] 1845[349] and 1847.[350][351] He was champion of England in 1842[352][353] and 1847.[184]
  • William Matthews was champion of Dorset in 1841[347] and in 1842.[354]
  • William Davy May (1817-1842) was champion of England in 1841.[347][355]
  • John Goodman of the Blues was the London champion in 1845.[356][357]
  • John Slade, known as 'Jack Slade', held the Devon title for many years in the mid 19th century. He won the Prince of Wales Cup and the Duke of Cornwall Cup and a large number of tournaments and matches.[358] He was all weights champion of England in 1860.[359]
  • Thomas Cooper (1823-1875), born at Sampford Courtenay,[329] won many tournaments and was the four Western counties champion in the 1860s through to 1870.[329][360] He was champion of West of England in 1859,[361] 1869[362][363] and 1870.[360] and reported to be champion of England in 1869.[362][363] He was champion of Devon in 1852,[364] 1858,[207] 1870,[365] 1873[366] and 1874.[367] He had a brother John, 3 years his senior, who had some tournament success and who lived on the farm where Abraham Cann was born.[329]
  • Frank Hutchings from Moreton[254] was Cornish wrestling champion of England in 1877, beating Phil Hancock.[368][369]
  • Robert Baker (1847[370]-?) of Bow[371] was champion of England in 1879, throwing Pike in the 10th round of the second day.[370][372] He was also Devon champion in 1879.[257] He had a brother Thomas who also had some success.[373]
  • Richard Pike (1850[370]-?) of Bow[371] was a champion wrestler in the 1880s and 1890s and was referred to as the "great Pike".[236] He was about 6 feet 2 inches high and weighed 244lbs.[370][371] He was champion of Devon in between 1878 and 1881.[374][375][376] He was champion of England in 1882.[377][261] He was world champion in 1894.[378][379] He was West of England champion for 17 years.[380]
  • Tom Cannon was a world champion Greco-Roman wrestler, who wrestled in Cornish wrestling matches in the late 19th and early 20t centuries.[381]
  • Tom Waters claimed to be the Cornish wrestling champion of the North of England in 1884.[382]
  • Samuel Battershill of Bow[371] was champion of Devon from 1885 through to 1887.[383][384]
  • Jack Wannop (1854–1923) was champion of London in 1892. He wrestled in other styles in the UK and United States. He was also a boxer.[267]
  • John Stentiford (1862-?) was in the Royal Marine Light Infantry, weighed 14 stone 4 lbs and was 5 feet 9 inches high. He won many first prizes in tournaments towards the end of the 1800s in Devon and Cornwall, including beating John Capell. He lost a title match for the world championship in 1888 against Jack Pearce after wrestling over two days.[270]
  • Joe Faulkner was 12 stone champion of the world in 1895.[385]
  • Charles Cawkell was a member of Britain's first international judo team who, along with Tani, competed in Cornish wrestling tournaments in the late 1920s, but with limited success.[315][386]


  • Georg Karl Julius Hackenschmidt (the "Russian lion" weighing over 25 st, or about 160 kg) defeated the Australian Cornish wrestling champion, Delhi Nelson (three times)[387][388] and the South African Cornish wrestling champion Grotz, in 1905.[389] Hackenschmidt was a champion of many wrestling styles.[387]


  • Fleure was a champion French wrestler who competed in Cornish wrestling competitions in Britain at the highest level in the early to mid 1800s.[390]
  • Henri was a noted French wrestler in the mid 1800s.[391]
  • Dubois was a French wrestler who weighed nearly 22 stone, who was beaten by Sam Rundle.[392]


  • Hillebrand, the "German Samson", was a strongman who toured America at the start of the 1900s and participated in some high profile Cornish wrestling matches with the likes of Sid Varney.[393][394]
  • Joe Ziehr, from Germany,[395] fought mostly in the United States and held the world Cornish wrestling heavyweight title between 1906[396] and 1911.[397] In 1902 he was the heavyweight champion of the United States.[61] Prior to this he had been a professional ice hockey player and played for the Calumet Miners.[398][399]


  • Greek George was a champion wrestler of many styles including Cornish wrestling. He wrestled throughout the world.[400]


  • Dutcher was a wrestler of "some importance" from Holland that wrestled in Cornwall in the 1890s.[401]


  • Saffney was champion of Ireland in 1826 and fought with Cann in 1826.[402][403]
  • Philip Gaffney, the "Irish giant",[12] was an Irish champion in the early 1800s.[404] He was champion of Ireland in 1827.[405] He was London champion in 1828.[406]
  • Finney was a tall Irish champion in the early 1800s who at least once defeated Abraham Cann.[35]
  • Larkins was the Irish champion in 1827.[407]
  • Moorish of the 4th Royal Irish Dragoon Guards was 5ft 5in high and competed at the highest level in the early 1800s.[408]
  • Simon Finn won the all-weights championship belt at the first annual meeting of the Devon and Cornish wrestling Society at Lambeth in 1849.[409] He was the Irish champion in 1847[410] and in 1849.[411]
  • McMahon was the Irish champion who fought in America in the 1870s.[147]
  • Molly Russell, was Lady Cornish wrestling champion of the world in 1904.[412][413] She was a crack shot, fencer and fought in other wrestling styles.[414]



  • Don Pardo, originally from France[419] and known as the "great Pardo", was a noted Mexican Cornish wrestler in the late 1800s. He was a world famed bicyclist[147][420][421]
  • Professor Willie, originally from San Francisco - 6 feet high and weighing 176 pounds,[419] was a noted Mexican Cornish wrestler in the late 1800s.[147][421]

New ZealandEdit

  • Richard Cox was the Westland Cornish wrestling champion in 1868.[422]
  • Thornton was the Cornish wrestling champion of New Zealand in 1882.[423][424]
  • Coghlan was champion wrestler of New Zealand in 1887.[425]
  • Duncan C Ross was the Cornish wrestling champion of New Zealand in 1891.[426]
  • Robert James Scott, Cornish wrestling champion of New Zealand defeated Australian champion Delhi Nelson in 1905 to become the Cornish wrestling champion of Australasia. He was 6 ft 3 inches and weighed over 14 stone.[427][428]
  • Harry Pearce was Cornish wrestling champion of Australasia in 1908.[429]

South AfricaEdit

  • Bill Irwin was heavyweight champion of South Africa before losing the title to Phil Mitchell.[430] He also fought in Britain, for example losing a match to Jack Pearce.[431]
  • Phil Mitchell, weighing 197lbs,[432] was a famous heavyweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa.[433][434] He was the heavyweight Cornish Wrestling champion of South Africa in 1905.[12][432][430]
  • William Prynne (?-1931), Originally from St Stephen-in-Brannel and known as "Bill", was the Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa.[435][436][432][434] He won 4 silver cups, a silver rose bowl and 2 cases of cutlery amongst other smaller prizes in South African tournaments.[437]
  • "Nick" Hocking, weighing 147lbs,[432] was the lightweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa in 1905.[434][438]
  • Grotz was Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa in 1905.[389]
  • Tit Wills, originally from Lanner[439] and weighing 140lbs,[432] was the middleweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa in 1906.[439][440][441]
  • James Henry Triggs (1873[12]-1949), weighing 220lbs,[432] born at Four Lanes and known as "Jim",[442] was the heavyweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa in 1905[430][443] and 1906.[444][445] He was champion of Australia in 1905 and won many matches in the US.[443] He held the heavyweight title for Cornwall in 1904[12][432][443] and was instrumental in setting up the CWA. He was also a regular manager and stickler for the Cornish contingent in Brittany.[446] He also wrestled in Norway.[12]
  • Almond Giles (1872-?), weighing 125lbs, was trained by Jack King[447] and was the lightweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa, England and America in 1907.[448] He was 1905 lightweight champion of South Africa.[449] He was born in St Dennis, Cornwall.[450] He won many tournaments in England and America.[439]
Almond Giles 1907, lightweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa, England and America[447]
  • Jack Rudd, weighing 152lbs,[451] was the middleweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa in 1905[439] and 1907.[450][145] He was one of the best Cumberland wrestlers.[451]
  • Sam Ham (1880-1946), weighing 165lbs,[432] who was born in Condurrow near Camborne, was the 1910 middleweight Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa.[452][453]
  • W Littlejohn, originally from Gunnislake[444] and weighing 220lbs,[454] known as 'tiny', was heavyweight champion of the Transvaal in 1910.[452]
  • Prynne Stevens, was the 1916 Cornish wrestling champion of South Africa.[435]
  • B Gregor was the heavyweight champion of South Africa in 1926.[455][456]
  • Cecil Coombes regained the heavyweight title of South Africa in 1927.[455][456]
  • J Ocliffe was the light heavyweight champion of South Africa in 1927.[455][456]

Sri LankaEdit

  • The Imajah was middleweight champion of Ceylon in 1894 and also competed in Cornwall.[401]


  • Anderson, known as the "terrible Swede", fought in the United States at the turn of the 20th century. He had a famous match, for the world title, with Rowett in 1899.[457]
  • Olson from Sweden, wrestled in the United States and beat John Tippett in a well known match in 1904.[458]
  • Charles Dufstrom, also known as the "terrible Swede", fought in the United States and claimed the world Cornish wrestling title in 1912.[459]


  • Hali Adali, the great Turkish wrestler weighing 263 lbs, had some success in Cornish wrestling at the turn of the 20th century including defeating Tom Harrington, Joe Ziehr and Jack O 'Neill in 1899.[460] However, he was defeated in a Cornish wrestling match by Jack O'Neill during a visit to the United States in 1903.[461]
  • Ahmed Madrali, the famous Greco-Roman wrestler known as the "Terrible Turk", tried his hand at Cornish wrestling and was defeated by Earnest Small.[290]

United StatesEdit

  • Joseph Taylor Williams (1830-?) was born in St Erth and fought in tournaments in Cornwall, Devon and California during the 1850s and 1860s. "He had not an equal in his day at anywhere near his weight."[116] He was champion of the Pacific coast. He was known as "little" Joe Williams or "Shiers" Williams. He was also lightweight champion of Cornwall in 1873.[462][463][464] He repeatedly beat Sam Rundle in the 1870s.[465]
  • Thomas Eudy (born in St Austell) was the California State Cornish wrestling champion in 1861.[116][466][467]
  • George Harvey (1843-?) was the Michigan Cornish wrestling champion in the 1870s. He was 5 feet 11 inches high and weighed 195 lbs.[220]
  • James Delbridge (1851-?) was the Michigan lightweight Cornish wrestling champion in the 1870s. He was 5 feet 7 inches high and weighed 145 lbs.[220]
  • Bill Pellew (1838-1908), from Virginia City, Nevada was a miner and known as the "Pride of Comstock". He was Cornish wrestling champion of America in the 1870s.[468]
  • Tom Carkeek, born in Plain-an-Gwarry, Redruth[469] was said to weigh 17 stone,[470] was a champion of Cornish wrestling in the 1860s[471] and was the world Cornish wrestling champion in 1875.[472] It was said that he won 528 consecutive wrestling matches without defeat and won 88 prizes.[473][469] He was champion of the Lakes in 1878.[473][474]
  • John Blydh (1854-?) born in Linkinhorne and weighing 186lbs, beat Tom Carkeek in a celebrated match in 1878.[475]
  • James Gerry (1858-?) born in Linkinhorne, weighing 180lbs and being 5 feet 11 inches high, beat the best men of America including Tom Carkeek. He also had some success in Cornwall, drawing a match with Sam Rundle.[476]
  • Johnny Smith, from Virginia City, claimed to be the Pacific coast Cornish Wrestling champion in 1884.[382]
  • James Pascoe claimed to be the Pacific coast Cornish Wrestling champion in 1884.[477][478] He was 5 styles wrestling champion of the world.[447]
  • Peter Carlyon (?-1926), from Breage,[479] was the world lightweight Cornish wrestling champion in 1876, having defeated Tom Carkeek.[472] In 1886[480][479] and 1887[481][482][483] he was the lightweight champion of America. He also came to compete in the UK.[480]
  • Durham Ivey (1854-1894) was the Colorado Cornish wrestling champion in 1886.[484][485] He died in a mine accident and was also a catch-as-catch-can wrestler.[485]
  • Andrew Bearle was the Cornish wrestling champion of America in 1887.[486]
  • Frank Joslin was the Pacific coast Cornish Wrestling champion in 1894.[487]
  • J W Jefford of Sonoma was the Pacific coast Cornish Wrestling champion in 1898.[488]
  • Louis Morgan was the champion Cornish wrestler of the North West in 1898.[489]
  • John Carkeek (1861-1924), known as "Jack", was the World Cornish Wrestling champion in 1886 (after beating Jack Pearce in a bout lasting over 5 hours), in 1887 (he separately fought Pearce where the outcome was contested and Pearce claimed that Carkeek bit off a portion of his ear,[490] Bragg[491] but drew with Hancock in a title match)[492] and again in 1889 (beating Hancock and Pearce)[493][494][495] through to 1901,[496] 1904 (beating Tom Bragg)[136] and 1905.[496][497][498] He regularly wrestled in Britain and the USA. He also wrestled in Australia. He was born in Rockland, Michigan, died in Havana and was buried in New York. He also won the Pacific coast championship.[499][500][266] He officially retired from wrestling in 1891,[501] however was involved in competitions after this date.[502] He was the son of Tom Carkeek[503] and his mother was first cousin to the actor Sir Henry Irving.[503] He was the champion of America in 1887,[504][505][506] 1888[267] and 1900.[507] In the US was originally trained by Thomas White from St Just.[492] In 1910, while using the name of Jack Fletcher, he was arrested as part of the Maybray gang involved with match fixing.[508]
  • Captain Jack King, from Houghton County,[509] held the world championship from 1895 to 1898 and was known as the Iron Mountain Butcher.[510][511] He was arrested for robbing a train in 1893.[512][513] He was champion of America before going to jail.[514]
  • John H Rowett, born in St Austell, was known as Jack and the "Bessemer Giant"[397] and gained the lightweight championship of the United States at the age of 16. He won the world championship in 1896 from Jack King and defended the title until his retirement in 1911.[515][510][516][517] Rowett regained his title in 1914.[518][517] He was champion of America in 1897,[519] 1898,[469][520][514] 1899[394] and 1909.[521] He was a game warden.[522]
Jack Rowett world's champion heavy-weight wrestler, Cornish style.
  • William Jones beat Jack Rowett in a large stand alone match in 1899.[523], but had lost to him in 1897.[524]
  • James Rodda was that champion of California in the Cornish style from 1889 through to 1902.[525][526][527] He was arrested on a charge of attempted murder after a gunfight with Robert Chase in 1902.[527]
  • Tony Harris was an USA Cornish wrestling Champion in the 1900s (coming from Butte, Montana), of which it was claimed that he was "the best man to ever wear a [wrestling] jacket".[116] He was champion of the North West in 1896[528] and 1903.[529]
  • Prof Mike J Dwyer, from Hancock, Michigan[530] and known as "Sonny" Dwyer,[531] claimed the world Cornish wrestling title in 1902.[532] He had the distinction of teaching Cornish wrestling to the US President, Theodore Roosevelt.[108][109][110]
  • Frank Gotch (1877 - 1917) beat Jack Carkeek in a Cornish wrestling match, while Jack claimed to have the world Cornish wrestling title.[533] Gotch was a champion of many wrestling styles.[534]
  • Jack O'Neill, beat Jack Carkeek and Hali Adali in the very early 1900s.[461]
  • Martin Burns (1861-1937), born in Cedar County and known as "Farmer" Burns, beat Rowett in 1899[524] and lost to M J Dwyer in a Cornish wrestling match in 1905.[535] He was a famous catch wrestler.[110]
  • Fred Roeber was champion of America in 1907.[536][537]
  • John Tippett (1876-1910),[538] known as Jack, lived in Butte, Montana, but was originally from St Austell[538] and weighed 186 lbs, claimed to be Cornish wrestling champion of America in 1908.[536][537] He also had some wrestling success in Cornwall.[538] He died in a cabin fire in Ontario.[538]
  • Tim Harrington (1873-?)[539] claimed the world Cornish wrestling middleweight title in 1903 and retained it until his death.[540][541][529][542] In 1902, Tim was arrested on the charge of insanity. It took 5 policemen to subdue him.[543] He had a brother Peter, who also has some wrestling success.[544] Tim beat Frank Gotch in a Cornish wrestling match.[545]
  • William Martin (?-1910[546]), 'Billy', was the lightweight world Cornish wrestling champion from 1898[547] until he died in 1910.[548] In 1902 he was the middleweight champion of the United States.[61][396] He also wrestled in Norway.[549]
  • John Rowe was Sheriff of Gogebic County, City Marshal of Bessemer and in 1910 was the undefeated world champion of Cornish-style wrestling.[512]
  • Sid R Varney, born in Cleveland, claimed the world Cornish wrestling title in 1921. He fought Ahmed Madrali in 1898 and 1899. He was a blacksmith and a champion in other wrestling styles.[550][394]
  • Dick Johns, from Marquette was the lightweight Cornish wrestling champion of the world in 1921.[551]
  • Tom Richards, originally from Old Pound, Nanpean, was the 1926 middleweight champion of America.[552]


  • John Rowe was a Welsh champion Cornish wrestler from the 1870s.[553]
  • Jack Lamnea, known as "Swansea Jack" and "Lemm" became all England Cornish style wrestling champion in 1903.[554]
  • Nancy Jones, was Lady Cornish wrestling champion of Wales in 1904.[412][413]

Cornish wrestling throwsEdit

There are a number of Cornish wrestling throws that are taught in training classes, but each has many variants.

In Play
Back Heave
Cornish Hug
Fore Heave
Flying Mare
Half Heave
Scat un Back
Teddy Bag Heave
Under Heave
Back Crook
Fore Crook
Slip Crook
Back Sprag
Double Sprag
Single Sprag
Hip Throws
Fore Hip
Pull Over Hip
Out Play
Back Step
Lock Arm
Pull Under
Foul Throws
Foul Moves
Cross Collar
Crowbar Hitch


The following Senior Championships are fought annually in competitions across the Duchy, overseen by the CWA:

Championship Current Weight limit (lbs) 1963 Weight limit (lbs) 1938 Weight limit (lbs) 1936 Weight limit (lbs) 1924 Weight Limit (lbs)
Heavyweight Open Open Open Open Open[555][556]
Light Heavyweight 210 180[557] N/A N/A N/A
Middleweight 168 160 160 160 160[558][556]
Lightweight 154 145[559] 145 145 145[555][556]
Featherweight 145 130[560] 130[561] 140[562][563] 130[564][556]
Women Open N/A N/A N/A N/A

The following Junior Championships are fought annually in competitions across the Duchy:

  • Under 18s Belt
  • Under 16s Trophy
  • Under 14s Trophy
  • Under 12s Trophy
  • Under 10s Trophy

Cornish Wrestling at the Royal Cornwall ShowEdit

The Cornish Wrestling Association (CWA) still features annually at the Royal Cornwall Agricultural Show. The Cornish wrestling tent can be found in the Countryside area very near to the west entrance. In the Cornish wrestling tent you will find an impressive display of Cornish wrestling trophies, belts, history, photos, books and DVDs. The wrestlers perform demonstrations of their style in the Countryside ring, usually twice a day for each of the three days of the show. The demonstrations feature most of the throws and moves of the Cornish style and also feature demonstration bouts usually with a variety of wrestlers from youngsters, girls, lightweights and heavyweights.

Outside CornwallEdit

Cornish wrestling is Cornwall's oldest sport and as Cornwall's native tradition it has travelled the world to places like Victoria, Australia and Grass Valley, California following the miners and gold rushes. In the city of Grass Valley, the tradition of singing Cornish carols lives on and St Piran's Day celebrations are held every year, which along with carol singing, includes a flag raising ceremony, games involving the Cornish pasty, and Cornish wrestling competitions.[565]

See alsoEdit


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  2. ^ Phillipps, K C: Westcountry Words & Ways, David & Charles (Publishers) Limited 1976, p99.
  3. ^ Cornish culture steps into the spotlight, The Western Morning News, 14 August 2006.
  4. ^ Chaucer, Geoffrey: The Canterbury Tales, The Knightes Tale, The Reeves Tale, the Tale of Gamelyn, The Tale of Sir Thopas, etc, 1387-1400
  5. ^ Shakespeare, William: As you like it, Act III, Scene II, 1599
  6. ^ Drayton, Michael: Poly-Olbion, 1612, i, 244
  7. ^ James, Nicholas:Poems on several occasions, Wrestling, Andrew Brice (Truro) 1742, p21-40.
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  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i Guy Jaouen and Matthew Bennett Nicols: Celtic Wrestling, The Jacket Styles, Fédération Internationale des Luttes Associées (Switzerland) 2007, p1-183.
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  14. ^ The Moderate Intelligencer, May 1, 1654
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  86. ^ Wrestling Breach not healed, Western Morning News, 25 June 1935, p10.
  87. ^ The wrestling season, Cornish Guardian, 5 May 1938, p8.
  88. ^ County wrestling association's finance, Cornish Guardian, 26 May 1938, p14.
  89. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Remarkable revival in the County, Western Morning News, 30 August 1946, p4.
  90. ^ Wrestling in the Duchy, Western Morning News, 08 May 1947, p5.
  91. ^ Unity achieved, "Red letter" day for Cornish wrestling, Cornish Guardian, 9 May 1946, p5.
  92. ^ a b Fair play and gentlemanly conduct is key to ancient sport's enduring appeal, The Western Morning News, 9 September 2014.
  93. ^ a b Cornish wrestling - county secretary outburst at committee meeting, Cornish Guardian, 17 May 1934, p12.
  94. ^ a b Cornish Wrestling Authorities, Western Morning News, 31 May 1935, p10.
  95. ^ County Association to be Resuscitated, Cornishman, 28 July 1932, p9.
  96. ^ Mainly Personal, Cornish Guardian, 18 August 1932, p7.
  97. ^ a b Longhurst, Percy: Cornish Wrestling, The Boy's Own Annual, Volume 52, 1930, p167-169.
  98. ^ Morris, Charles: Historical Tales, the Romance of Reality, JB Lippincott Company (Philadelphia) 1895, p212.
  99. ^ Sewell, Elizabeth Missing: Popular History of France, Longmans Green and Co (London) 1876, p302.
  100. ^ Jennings, LA: Mixed Martial Arts: A History from Ancient Fighting Sports, Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group 2021, p52-53.
  101. ^ Wrestling advocated : Football condened, Cornish Guardian, 23 September 1910, p2.
  102. ^ David Knight (2004) "Davy, Sir Humphry, baronet (1778–1829)" in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press
  103. ^ "APS Member History". Retrieved 2 April 2021.
  104. ^ Trevithick, Ricard, Encyclopedia Britannica Vol XXIII, Maxwell Sommerville (Philadelphia) 1891, p589.
  105. ^ a b Cornish wrestling champion of 150 years ago, Cornish Guardian, 17 March 1966, p10.
  106. ^ Fears for future of wrestling after event's small turnout, Cornish Guardian, 22 September 2010.
  107. ^ Playing the judo card cost Hague his job, The Guardian (London), 12 June 2001.
  108. ^ a b Gov. Roosevelt, a Wrestler, New York Times, 1 December 1899, p1.
  109. ^ a b Wrestler has apparently defied all traditions of athletics and is throwing all comers, The Minneapolis Journal, 21 January 1906
  110. ^ a b c Old "Farmer" Burns comes back and shows splendid condition, The Minneapolis journal, 21 January 1906, p3.
  111. ^ Berlenbach shows wrestling training, San Bernardino Sun, 6 April 1924, p4.
  112. ^ Robert Fitz-Simmons, Cornishman, 25 March 1897, p7.
  113. ^ Cornish wrestling at stake, Cornish Post and Mining News, 8 September 1944, p3.
  114. ^ For Realism, Border Watch — (SA), 21 March 1946, p4.
  115. ^ Cornish Reminiscences, The Kadina and Wallaroo Times (SA), 20 July 1927, p4.
  116. ^ a b c d e Payton, Philip: The Cornish Overseas: A History of Cornwall's Great Migration, Ian Grant 2005, p21-218.
  117. ^ Wrestling, Adelaide Times (SA), 29 July 1851, p3.
  118. ^ Death of an ex-champion wrestler, The Express and Telegraph (Adelaide, SA), 5 February 1906, p4.
  119. ^ Old wrestler dead, The Murchison Times and Day Dawn Gazette (Cue, WA), 6 February 1906, p3.
  120. ^ Death of a wrestler, The Corowa Free Press (NSW), 9 February 1906, p6.
  121. ^ A formidable ruffian, Mount Alexander Mail (Vic.), 11 November 1872, p2.
  122. ^ The Ophir murder - the character of Corse, Empire (Sydney, NSW), 2 November 1872, p3.
  123. ^ THE BATHURST MURDER., The Queenslander (Brisbane, Qld.), 9 November 1872, p9.
  124. ^ Wrestling, match between Curley Bray and Curnick for one hundred pounds, Bell's Life in Victoria and Sporting Chronicle (Melbourne, Vic.), 7 April 1860, p4.
  125. ^ Payton, Philip: Cornwall, Alexander Associates (Fowey) 1996, p240.
  126. ^ Death of Mr G Philips, The Daily Mail (Brisbane, Qld.), 24 March 1922, p8.
  127. ^ a b CALEDONIAN GAMES. FIRST DAY., Bendigo Advertiser (Vic.), 27 December 1879, p3.
  128. ^ Callow youths, Smith's Weekly (Sydney, NSW), 6 July 1935, p13.
  129. ^ Death of Champion Wrestler, Daily Post (Hobart, Tas.), 28 March 1913, p6.
  130. ^ Former champion wrestler's death, The Age (Melbourne, Vic.), 28 March 1913, p7.
  131. ^ Death of Mr J Walker, Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW), 26 March 1913, p2.
  132. ^ Great wrestling match, Bendigo Advertiser (Vic.), 4 March 1884, p1.
  133. ^ Wrestling, Coolgardie Miner (WA), 20 December 1894, p3.
  134. ^ Bendingo and district, The Argus (Melbourne, Vic), 23 June 1925, p5.
  135. ^ Wrestling, West Cumberland Times, 13 March 1907, p3.
  136. ^ a b Western Australia, Cornishman, 3 November 1904, p3.
  137. ^ a b Cornish Wrestling. Dell Nellson v. Thomas. Neither Man Prevails., Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW), 6 July 1891, p2.
  138. ^ Wrestling, The Riverine Herald (Echuca, Vic. : Moama, NSW), 1 March 1909, p3.
  139. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW), 22 December 1890, p2.
  140. ^ Cornish wrestling, The Evening Star (Boulder, WA), 10 November 1898, p4.
  141. ^ Mons Victor, The Evening Star (Boulder, WA), 17 December 1898, p3.
  142. ^ Harry Pearce the Australian champion, Cornishman, 4 August 1904, p7.
  143. ^ Wrestling, A desperate struggle, Weekly Times (Melbourne, Vic), 3 February 1906, p17.
  144. ^ Festival finale, The Advertiser; Adelaide, 22 May 2001.
  145. ^ a b Wrestling on the Rand, Cornish middleweight championship, The Cornish Telegraph, 31 January 1907, p17.
  146. ^ Cornish young wrestlers, Cornish Guardian, 5 September 1946, p5.
  147. ^ a b c d e f Death of Richard (Schiller) Williams, Cornish Post and Mining News, 27 August 1892, p7.
  148. ^ Notes and Comments, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 1 April 1892, p5.
  149. ^ a b Dawson Canada, Cornish Post and Mining News, 17 August 1899, p3.
  150. ^ a b 'Klondike, Cornish Post and Mining News, 31 August 1899, p4.
  151. ^ Wrestling in Americal - Gulval man wins silver cup, Cornishman, 4 October 1906, p6.
  152. ^ Richard Carew (antiquary): The Survey of Cornwall, 1602, p76.
  153. ^ a b c d e f Dr Whetter, James: Cornish People in the 18th Century, Lyfrow Trelyspen, The Roseland Institute, Gorran 2000, p50-56.
  154. ^ Coate, Mary: Puritan Survey of 160 parishes in Cornwall, 1586
  155. ^ a b c d e f g Rev Polwhele, R: History of Cornwall, Michell & Co (Truro) 1816, p67-68.
  156. ^ Hamilton Jenkin, A K: The Story of Cornwall, Thomas Nelsom and Sons Ltd 1934, p119-121.
  157. ^ Cornish wrestling revival, Western Morning News, 20 September 1923, p2.
  158. ^ Cornish folk in times past, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 12 January 1959, p2.
  159. ^ Matthew's great day, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 25 August 1994, p77.
  160. ^ One hundred years ago, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 26 March 1908, p6.
  161. ^ Wrestling match, Derby Mercury, 14 October 1757, p4.
  162. ^ Lamentable occurrance, Taunton Courier, and Western Advertiser, 30 June 1824, p5.
  163. ^ Gymnastics, Saint James's Chronicle, 16 June 1808, p1.
  164. ^ Wrestling, Star (London), 5 August 1826, p4.
  165. ^ Cornish Wrestlers, Western Morning News, 22 August 1944, p6.
  166. ^ Mawgan wrestling - champions present and past, Cornish Guardian, 28 July 1927, p13.
  167. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Cornishman, 9 March 1927, p2.
  168. ^ Death of a Cornish wrestler, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 17 December 1869, p4.
  169. ^ Death of a Cornish wrestler, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 18 December 1869, p5.
  170. ^ Deaths, Royal Cornwall Gazette - Friday 19 September 1851, p5.
  171. ^ a b The great wrestling match, Globe, 26 October 1826, p3.
  172. ^ Historic venue for wrestling in St Kew, Cornish Guardian, 16 August 1956, p9.
  173. ^ a b c Cornish Wrestling down the ages, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 4 January 1954, p1.
  174. ^ Samuel Ley Thorne,The Converted Wrestler; or the Life of Abraham Bastard, 1877
  175. ^ a b Wrestling: James Cann and Olver, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 22 June 1828, p3.
  176. ^ James Warren, Cornish Times - Saturday 16 May 1857, p1.
  177. ^ Mining Intelligence, Cornish Times, 16 May 1857, p1.
  178. ^ a b 'Howitt, William: Rural Life of England, Longman (london), 1840, p536-538.
  179. ^ Cornish Wrestling Match, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 11 October 1835.
  180. ^ a b c d e f g Tom Gundry, Cornishman, 1 November 1888, p3.
  181. ^ Gleanings, Birmingham Daily Post, 25 October 1888, p7.
  182. ^ Cornish Wrestling returns to Sithney, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 03 June 1982, p41.
  183. ^ Wrestling Matches at Redruth, Cornishman, 28 August 1884, p6.
  184. ^ a b Cornwall and Devon Wrestling, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 6 June 1847, p3.
  185. ^ Fish, Tin and Copper, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 22 May 1880, p4.
  186. ^ West of England gleanings, Weston Mercury, 27 October 1888, p2.
  187. ^ Wrestliana, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 12 February 1870, p4.
  188. ^ Death of a Cornish wrestler, Cornishman, 17 March 1892, p4.
  189. ^ A reminiscence of Johnna Roverts and Harry Williams, Cornishman, 31 March 1892, p7.
  190. ^ Death of a famous Cornish wrestler, Cornish Post and Mining News, 19 March 1892, p6.
  191. ^ Morning Advertiser, 6 June 1857.
  192. ^ a b Death of Mr W Delbridge, Cornishman, 4 March 1886, p7.
  193. ^ Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 26 May 1839
  194. ^ Morning Advertiser, 21 May 1839
  195. ^ The Era, 25 June 1848
  196. ^ The late capt. Joseph Hodge, a striking career, The Cornish Telegraph, 21 October 1909, p7.
  197. ^ a b Death of a Cornish wrestler, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 3 November 1899, p5.
  198. ^ Wrestling at Redruth, The Cornish Telegraph, 15 May 1884, p8.
  199. ^ Wrestling at Redruth, Cornishman - Thursday 15 May 1884, p5.
  200. ^ a b c Death of a manly wrestler, Cornishman, 9 November 1899, p2.
  201. ^ Death of a Cornish wrestler, and respected man, Cornishman - Thursday 02 November 1899, p5.
  202. ^ The Cornish Telegraph, 31 October 1860
  203. ^ a b Wrestling, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 2 November 1860, p4.
  204. ^ The Cornish Telegraph, 28 September 1853
  205. ^ The Cornish Telegraph, 12 April 1854
  206. ^ a b The Wrestling, The Cornish Telegraph, 30 July 1856, p3.
  207. ^ a b Royal Cornwall Gazette, 11 June 1858
  208. ^ Royal Cornwall Gazette, 17 September 1858
  209. ^ Lake's Falmouth Packet and Cornwall Advertiser, 1 June 1861
  210. ^ Morning Advertiser, 10 June 1862
  211. ^ Royal Cornwall Gazette, 23 June 1854
  212. ^ Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 19 June 1859
  213. ^ Royal Cornwall Gazette, 14 April 1854
  214. ^ Treglown, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 25 March 1864, p8.
  215. ^ Wrestling, The Cornish Telegraph, 22 February 1854, p3.
  216. ^ Barton RM, Life in Cornwall in the mid 19th Century, D Bradford Barton Ltd (Truro) 1971, p233.
  217. ^ Joseph Menear, Illustrated Sporting News and Theatrical and Musical Review, 2 April 1864, p1.
  218. ^ Wrestling, Illustrated Sporting News and Theatrical and Musical Review, 12 June 1869, p3.
  219. ^ Who is Joe Menear, Cornishman, 25 October 1894, p3.
  220. ^ a b c Delbridge, James: Delbridge's guide on grab hold, or Cornish style of wrestling, (Michigan), 1879, p1-28.
  221. ^ Notes on the Exeter wrestling, Western Morning News, 8 June 1869, p3.
  222. ^ Exciting wrestling match, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 12 December 1874, p5.
  223. ^ A wrestling match, Western Times, 25 September 1873, p1.
  224. ^ Cornish wrestling at St Blazey, Cornish Guardian, 5 September 1902, p8.
  225. ^ Wrestling, The Australian Star (Sydney, NSW),20 June 1883, p2.
  226. ^ The Cornish Champion Vanquished, Cornishman, 11 July 1895, p7.
  227. ^ a b Wrestling match at Plymouth, The Cornish Telegraph, 4 April 1876, p7.
  228. ^ Butte City Montana, Cornish Post and Mining News, 24 March 1898, p6.
  229. ^ Scene at the Helton wrestling matches, The Cornish Telegraph, 20 October 1883, p5.
  230. ^ Jack Wannop as boxer and wrestler, Boxing World and Mirror of Life, 19 January 1907, p12.
  231. ^ Cornishmen abroad: Wrestling, Cornishman, 7 June 1894, p2.
  232. ^ The canvas jacket, The Anaconda standard, 15 June 1895, p4.
  233. ^ The wrestling tournament, Cornishman, 5 July 1894, p4.
  234. ^ Wrestling for £100, East & South Devon Advertiser, 5 November 1887, p7.
  235. ^ Wrestling Champion - Death of Philip Hancock, West Briton.
  236. ^ a b Phip Hancock's ring days, Western Morning News, 29 September 1921, p2.
  237. ^ Wrestling, Cornish Post and Mining News, 21 August 1926, p3.
  238. ^ Phil Hancock, Tom Gundry and Jack Pearce, Cornishman, 5 October 1921, p3.
  239. ^ Bugle Native's long service, Cornish Guardian, 31 October 1929, p13.
  240. ^ a b Obituary, Cornish Guardian, 6 March 1969, p16.
  241. ^ a b Converted wrestling champion, Cornish Guardian, 14 January 1965, p9.
  242. ^ Cornish wrestler and local preacher, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 1 June 1922, p3.
  243. ^ Cornish wrestling, Western Morning News, 12 July 1922, p2.
  244. ^ A Cornish wrestler in Mexico, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 16 July 1892, p4.
  245. ^ Death of Schiller Williams, Cornishman 25 August 1892, p6.
  246. ^ Letter from the Transvaal, Cornishman, 13 May 1948, p4.
  247. ^ Lanivet: wrestling, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 10 May 1878, p5.
  248. ^ Truro Wrestling, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 11 September 1896, p5.
  249. ^ a b c Death of Mr Tom Stone, Cornish Guardian, 18 March 1937, p10.
  250. ^ County wrestling at Truro , Cornishman, 24 September 1891, p7.
  251. ^ The county wrestling matches , Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 19 September 1891, p4.
  252. ^ 1891 UK Census, Transcript of Piece RG12/1822 (Part 1), Folio 7 Page 7.
  253. ^ a b Death of a famous Cornish wrestler, Cornish Guardian, 4 April 1924, p7.
  254. ^ a b Thomas Bragg, Western Times - Monday 24 November 1879, p3.
  255. ^ Wrestling, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 22 July 1887, p7.
  256. ^ Wrestling in Devon, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 30 September 1876, p5.
  257. ^ a b Wrestling in Devonshire, Sporting Life, 3 September 1879, p4.
  258. ^ A Wrestling Match, Western Times, 2 September 1879, p2.
  259. ^ Wrestling at Dartmouth, Western Times, 28 August 1880, p3.
  260. ^ Wrestling, Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 1 September 1882, p7.
  261. ^ a b Grand Wrestling Tournament, Bristol Mercury, 29 May 1882, p4.
  262. ^ Wrestling match at Cardiff, South Wales Daily News, 10 September 1883, p3.
  263. ^ Wrestling, Cornishman, 8 June 1882, p6.
  264. ^ Carkeek vs Bragg, Cornish & Devon Post, 27 August 1887, p2.
  265. ^ Wrestling, Cornishman, 30 June 1904, p6.
  266. ^ a b Corvion, Tom: Pioneers of Professional Wrestling: 1860–1899, Archway Publishing (Bloomington) 2014, p37-38.
  267. ^ a b c Wrestling for the championship, Cornishman, 27 October 1892, p7.
  268. ^ Grandson of wrestling champ met wife at Helston flora day, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 5 February 1998, p7.
  269. ^ a b The wrestling championship of Cornwall, Cornish & Devon Post, 8 January 1887, p2.
  270. ^ a b c Wrestling match for the championship of the world, Western Morning News, 16 May 1888, p4.
  271. ^ County Wrestling matches at Truro, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 23 September 1887, p8.
  272. ^ Wrestling at Plymouth, Cornishman, 24 May 1888, p5.
  273. ^ Prize wrestling, Cornishman, 16 May 1889, p6.
  274. ^ On Wednesday afternoon wrestling, Lake's Falmouth Packet and Cornwall Advertiser, 19 August 1893, p5.
  275. ^ Yesterday's Cornwall, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 20 October 1994, p14.
  276. ^ The Cornish championship, Sporting Life, 23 October 1894, p4.
  277. ^ a b Trewennack wreslting matches, Cornishman, 1 November 1883, p5.
  278. ^ Helston Notes, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 14 August 1885, p5.
  279. ^ Wrestling at Porkellis, Cornishman - Thursday 20 August 1885, p3.
  280. ^ Wrestling at Redruth, Cornish Post and Mining News, 26 September 1890, p8.
  281. ^ Lake's Falmouth Packet and Cornwall Advertiser, 23 July 1898.
  282. ^ Royal Cornwall Gazette, 21 July 1898.
  283. ^ Cornubian and Redruth Times, 26 September 1890.
  284. ^ Old Cornish wrestler, the passing of MR J Capell, St Columb, Cornish Guardian, 11 February 1932, p2.
  285. ^ Correspondence, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 10 January 1902, p5.
  286. ^ Redruth Wrestling matches, Cornishman, 25 September 1890, p8.
  287. ^ Wrestling matches at Helston, Cornishman, 10 July 1884, p5.
  288. ^ Fine exposition of Cornish wrestling, Cornishman, 23 June 1904, p5.
  289. ^ Cornish wrestling revived, The Sportsman, 20 August 1906, p8.
  290. ^ a b c Links with sport, Cornishman, 4 October 1922, p4.
  291. ^ Cornish wrestling revived, Cornishman, 23 August 1906, p8.
  292. ^ Royal Cornwall Gazette, 23 August 1906
  293. ^ a b 1891 Census, Enumeration District 10, Folio 154 Page 3.
  294. ^ Cornish wrestling champion of yesteryear, Cornish Guardian, 4 August 1966, p7.
  295. ^ Boxing World and Mirror of Life, 1 August 1914
  296. ^ Passing of "Reub" Chapman: A former champion, Cornish Guardian, 3 July 1930, p9.
  297. ^ Charge against a wrestler, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 15 February 1901, p7.
  298. ^ Alleged arson in Cornwall, The Cornish Telegraph, 13 February 1901, p2.
  299. ^ Cornubian and Redruth Times, 23 July 1925
  300. ^ a b c d Bodmin wrestler wins a second Cornish title, Cornish Guardian, 18 July 1963, p14.
  301. ^ West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 9 September 1912
  302. ^ a b Boxing World and Mirror of Life ,16 August 1913
  303. ^ Boxing World and Mirror of Life, 23 August 1913
  304. ^ Cornish Guardian, 20 June 1919
  305. ^ West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 23 August 1920
  306. ^ Western Morning News, 23 August 1921
  307. ^ Cornishman, 25 August 1920
  308. ^ Michigan, The Cornish Telegraph, 16 December 1909, p6.
  309. ^ Wrestling at St Columb, West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser, 12 September 1912, p3.
  310. ^ Wrestling at St Columb, Cornish Guardian, 13 September 1912, p6.
  311. ^ a b Cornish wrestling in Lady of Pendower, Kinematograph Weekly, 28 June 1934, p37-38.
  312. ^ Tripp, Michael: PERSISTENCE OF DIFFERENCE: A HISTORY OF CORNISH WRESTLING, University of Exeter as a thesis for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy 2009, p127-175.
  313. ^ a b Cornish Wrestling, Western Morning News, 11 August 1927, p3.
  314. ^ Wrestling at Camborne, Cornish Post and Mining News, 20 August 1927, p2.
  315. ^ a b Cornish wrestlers challenged, Cornish Guardian, 18 August 1927, p4.
  316. ^ Some old-time champions, Cornish Guardian, 19 September 1919, p3.
  317. ^ Sir Thomas Parkyns: The Inn-play or Cornish Hugg Wrestler, J Bailey (London) 1713, p18-19.
  318. ^ a b Wrestlers, North Devon Journal, 26 January 1871, p5.
  319. ^ Whispers and echoes, Cornish Guardian, 1 October 1926, p7.
  320. ^ a b Two celebrated wrestlers, Little Cock and Blind Bill , Hereford Times, 21 November 1846, p9.
  321. ^ Death of a noted wrestler, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 16 May 1874, p37.
  322. ^ Torpoint diversions, Hampshire Chronicle, 29 July 1811, p72.
  323. ^ Tavistock Wrestling match, North Devon Journal, 18 May 1827, p3.
  324. ^ Globe, 17 July 1811
  325. ^ Saint James's Chronicle, 26 May 1812
  326. ^ Star (London), 15 August 1812
  327. ^ Cornish wrestling at the Eagle tavern, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 14 August 1831, p3.
  328. ^ Wrestling at Saltash, Pilot (London), 6 August 1811, p3.
  329. ^ a b c d Wrestling Notes: Thomas Cooper, Western Times, 3 February 1880, p7.
  330. ^ Death of an old wrestler, Express and Echo, 23 March 1875, p2.
  331. ^ Death of an old wrestler, Royal Cornwall Gazette - Saturday 27 March 1875, p4.
  332. ^ a b Wrestling, Weekly Dispatch (London), 22 July 1827, p5.
  333. ^ Wrestling, Morning Chronicle, 17 April 1827, p4.
  334. ^ Devonshire Wrestling, Morning Advertiser, 17 April 1827, p3.
  335. ^ Wrestling Notes, Western Times, 21 February 1880, p3.
  336. ^ A champion of other days, Western Times, 12 May 1860, p6.
  337. ^ a b Old Abraham Cann, the Champion Wrestler, The Cornish Telegraph - Wednesday 25 July 1860, p2.
  338. ^ Abe Cann's bout with the Cornish champion, Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 14 December 1927, p3.
  339. ^ Cornish Wrestling Match, Globe, 7 June 1827, p3.
  340. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Morning Advertiser, 2 July 1828, p2.
  341. ^ a b Death of Jemmy Truscott, Sporting Life, 15 January 1891, p4.
  342. ^ a b Funeral of Jemmy Truscott, Sporting Life, 23 January 1891, p4.
  343. ^ a b Wrestling: Benefit of Jemmy Truscott, Sporting Life, 14 November 1883, p1.
  344. ^ Wrestling, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 1 June 1845, p4.
  345. ^ Cornwall and Devon wrestling society: the championship, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 16 April 1868, p4.
  346. ^ Attempted murder in Devonshire, Sun (London), 16 November 1841, p3.
  347. ^ a b c Wrestling,Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 18 September 1841, p3.
  348. ^ The Era, 13 October 1844
  349. ^ Grand Wrestling Match,Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 16 August 1845, p3.
  350. ^ Morning Herald (London), 25 May 1847
  351. ^ Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 23 May 1847
  352. ^ Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 10 April 1842
  353. ^ Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 2 April 1842
  354. ^ Wrestling at Tiverton,Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 10 April 1842, p4.
  355. ^ Death of May, the wrestler, North Devon Journal, 25 June 1829, p3.
  356. ^ Devon and Cornwall Wrestling Matches, Sun (London), 16 May 1845, p2.
  357. ^ Devon and Cornwall Wrestling Matches, Morning Advertiser, 15 May 18455, p3.
  358. ^ Jack Slade's wrestling and boxing competitions, Sporting Life, 7 February 1887, p3.
  359. ^ Wrestling, The Sportsman, 17 February 1885, p4.
  360. ^ a b Champion Wrestler's Belt, Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 12 August 1870, p6.
  361. ^ The Cornish Telegraph, 23 June 1858
  362. ^ a b Wrestling at Exeter, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 13 August 1869, p4.
  363. ^ a b Western Morning News, 11 August 1869
  364. ^ Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 8 August 1852
  365. ^ Western Times, 9 May 1870
  366. ^ Western Times, 15 August 1873
  367. ^ Western Times, 30 July 1874
  368. ^ Items of News, The Cornish Telegraph, 12 June 1877, p4.
  369. ^ Western Morning News, 5 June 1877
  370. ^ a b c d The great Cornwall and Devon wrestling match between Baker and Pike for the championship, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 13 September 1879, p9.
  371. ^ a b c d Devon wrestling, Western Times, 7 February 1879, p3.
  372. ^ Champion wrestling match, Cornish & Devon Post, 13 September 1879, p2.
  373. ^ Wrestling notes: Thomas Baker, Western Times, 13 January 1880, p2.
  374. ^ Devon Wrestling, Western Times, 6 February 1879, p6.
  375. ^ The Sportsman, 22 July 1880
  376. ^ Western Times, 1 November 1887
  377. ^ Grand wrestling tournament, Western Daily Press, 29 May 1882, p8.
  378. ^ Wrestling, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 16 November 1894, p2.
  379. ^ Champion wrestling at Plymouth, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 15 November 1894, p4.
  380. ^ Champion wrestler at Cardiff, Star of Gwent, 20 September 1895, p9.
  381. ^ Wrestling at Cardiff: Cannon vs. Pike, South Wales Daily News, 27 September 1895, p6.
  382. ^ a b Boxing and wrestling, Daily Alta California, 9 August 1884, p1.
  383. ^ Cornish wrestling, Morning Post, 12 April 1887, p3.
  384. ^ Carkeek, Cornishman, 31 March 1887, p4.
  385. ^ Wrestling, South Wales Daily News, 15 October 1895, p6.
  386. ^ Ju Jitsu exponent beaten, Cornish Guardian, 13 October 1927, p9.
  387. ^ a b Cornish Wrestling, The Bendigo Independent (Vic), 6 February 1905, p3.
  388. ^ Cornish Wrestling, The Age (Melbourne, Vic.), 3 February 1905, p6.
  389. ^ a b Wrestling, Sporting Life, 17 June 1905, p1.
  390. ^ Wrestling, The Era, 30 June 1844, p12.
  391. ^ Wrestling, The Cornish Telegraph, 21 June 1854, p3.
  392. ^ Sam Rundle, Boxing World and Mirror of Life, 6 July 1904, p6.
  393. ^ Challenge is accepted, Bisbee daily review, 7 July 1904, p5.
  394. ^ a b c Big wrestling match Friday eve, Bisbee daily review, 29 June 1904, p8.
  395. ^ Michigan, Cornishman, 3 September 1908, p3.
  396. ^ a b Strong boys contesting in a series of bouts for the championship, The Minneapolis journal, 22 July 1906, p3.
  397. ^ a b Cornish wrestling in America, The Cornish Telegraph, 14 October 1909, p7.
  398. ^ Ziehr defeats Ed. Tremberth, Camulet News, 03 January 1911, p7.
  399. ^ Wrestling in the limelight, just now, The Minneapolis Journal, 19 August 1906, p28.
  400. ^ Land and water, Otago Witness, 6 July 1899, p36.
  401. ^ a b Wrestling at Callington, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 26 July 1894, p7.
  402. ^ Wrestling, Trades' Free Press, 24 September 1826, p6.
  403. ^ Wrestling, Globe, 25 September 1826, p3.
  404. ^ Wrestling at Haigh Park, Globe, 11 April 1828, p3.
  405. ^ Wrestling, Exeter and Plymouth Gazette, 29 September 1827, p3.
  406. ^ Wrestling, Weekly Dispatch (London), 23 November 1828, p5.
  407. ^ Wrestling, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 1 April 1827, p3.
  408. ^ wrestling, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 12 July 1828, p4.
  409. ^ Wrestling, Sporting Life, 29 April 1887, p3.
  410. ^ Wrestling near Bristol, Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle, 1 August 1847, p3.
  411. ^ Wrestling, Morning Advertiser, 30 May 1849, p3.
  412. ^ a b Female Wrestlers, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 14 May 1904, p8.
  413. ^ a b Wrestling at the Winter gardens, Plymouth, Cornishman, 12 May 1904, p7.
  414. ^ Dublin born girl's versatility, Dublin Daily Express, 21 July 1915, p5.
  415. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Western Morning News, 8 December 1926, p12.
  416. ^ "Cornish wrestling: Fred Richard's feat against Tani", Cornish Guardian, 26 November 1926, p4.
  417. ^ "Wrestling: Effect of feats by Cornishmen", Western Morning News, 23 December 1926, p10.
  418. ^ "Wrestling at Redruth", Cornish Guardian, 10 June 1927, p15.
  419. ^ a b A Cornish wrestler in Mexico, The Cornish Telegraph, 14 July 1892, p5.
  420. ^ Success of a Cornish wrestler in Mexico, Cornish Post and Mining News, 28 May 1892, p8.
  421. ^ a b Schiller Williams, Cornishman, 21 July 1892, p7.
  422. ^ Wrestling for the championship of Westland, WEST COAST TIMES, ISSUE 712, 4 JANUARY 1868, p2.
  423. ^ More Wrestling, WEST COAST TIMES, ISSUE 4120, 29 JUNE 1882, p2.
  424. ^ Wrestling, GREY RIVER ARGUS, VOLUME XXVI, ISSUE 4313, 29 JUNE 1882, p2.
  425. ^ Black Point sports, NANGAHUA TIMES, 30 DECEMBER 1887, p2.
  426. ^ Wrestling Championship, LYTTELTON TIMES, VOLUME LXXV, ISSUE 9310, 13 JANUARY 1891, p5.
  427. ^ CORNISH WRESTLING. Melbourne, Sunday, Zeehan and Dundas Herald (Tas) 14 August 1905, p3.
  428. ^ Wrestling, Leader (Melbourne, Vic), 29 July 1905, p17.
  429. ^ Wrestling, NEW ZEALAND HERALD, 16 September 1908, p5.
  430. ^ a b c Cornish Wrestling in South Africa, The Cornish Telegraph, 11 May 1905, p6.
  431. ^ Sharpshooting around Camborne, Cornishman, 26 July 1894, p3.
  432. ^ a b c d e f g h Wrestling in South Africa, The Cornish Telegraph, 2 February 1905, p8.
  433. ^ Cornish Wrestling in South Africa, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 04 January 1906, p4.
  434. ^ a b c Cornish Wrestling in South Africa, Cornishman, 9 February 1905, p4.
  435. ^ a b In South Africa, Amateur tournament in Johannesburg, Sporting Chronicle, 2 October 1916, p3.
  436. ^ Some Old Time Champions, Cornish Guardian, 19 September 1919, p3.
  437. ^ Mr W Prynne St Stephen-in-Brannel, Cornish Guardian, 29 October 1931, p10.
  438. ^ Lightweight champion of South Africa, The Cornish Telegraph, 12 January 1905, p8.
  439. ^ a b c d Wrestling tournament in South Africa, Cornishman, 11 October 1906, p4.
  440. ^ Lanner, Royal Cornwall Gazette - Thursday 18 October 1906, p4.
  441. ^ Lanner wrestler in South Africa, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 12 October 1906, p8.
  442. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Cornish Post and Mining News, 15 June 1935, p8.
  443. ^ a b c Famous Cornish wrestler, Western Morning News, 10 April 1919, p7.
  444. ^ a b Cornishmen in the Transvaal, Cornishman, 1 February 1906, p7.
  445. ^ The Cornish Sport, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 31 July 1924, p2.
  446. ^ Well known Cornish wrestler, Cornishman, 17 March 1949, p2.
  447. ^ a b c A noted Cornish wrestler home from South Africa: The career of Almond Giles, Cornish Guardian, 12 July 1907, p3.
  448. ^ How Rand Cornishmen spent Christmas, Cornishman, 24 January 1907, p4.
  449. ^ St Dennis wrestlers in South Africa, Cornish Guardian 10 November 1905, p2.
  450. ^ a b Wrestling, Coolgardie Miner (WA), 12 March 1907, p4.
  451. ^ a b A St Dennis wrestler in South Africa, Cornish Guardian, 14 April 1905, p5.
  452. ^ a b Our South African Letter, Cornishman, 13 October 1910, p8.
  453. ^ Mr S Ham, Cornishman, 31 October 1946, p2.
  454. ^ Wrestling on the Rand, The Cornish Telegraph - Thursday 15 March 1906, p6.
  455. ^ a b c South Africa's new champion, Cornish Guardian, 14 January 1927, p3.
  456. ^ a b c Cornwall on the Reef a day with the wrestlers, Cornish Post and Mining News, 8 January 1927, p8.
  457. ^ Rowett still champion, Cornish Post and Mining News, 30 March 1899, p5.
  458. ^ St Austell, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 28 January 1904, p5.
  459. ^ Cornish wrestling will be feature, The Tacoma Times, 25 April 1912, p2.
  460. ^ Threw four men, Cornish Post and Mining News, 8 June 1899, p7.
  461. ^ a b Wrestling, The Minneapolis journal, 11 June 1903, p8.
  462. ^ Letters from the Transvaal, Cornishman, 13 May 1948, p4.
  463. ^ The annual wrestling, The Cornish Telegraph, 13 August 1873, p3.
  464. ^ Royal Cornwall Gazette, 9 August 1873.
  465. ^ Wrestling, The Cornish Telegraph, 14 July 1875, p4.
  466. ^ Wrestling in America, Western Morning News, 13 November 1861, p2.
  467. ^ Cornish Wrestlers in America, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 15 November 1861, p8.
  468. ^ Bill Pellew's Death, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 28 May 1908, p3.
  469. ^ a b c Cornish wrestlers in America, Cornish Post and Mining News, 1 September 1898, p8.
  470. ^ Wrestling in California, Newcastle Guardian and Tyne Mercury, 8 December 1866, p8.
  471. ^ Jack Carkeek the Cornish wrestling wonder Cornubian and Redruth Times, 05 August 1905, p3.
  472. ^ a b Evening Star (Washington DC), 7 May 1926, p41.
  473. ^ a b Cornish wrestling in the United States Cornish & Devon Post, 5 October 1878, p8.
  474. ^ Wrestling in California The Cornish Telegraph, 12 December 1866, p3.
  475. ^ Wrestling in the United States, A Cornish champion, Cornishman, 3 October 1878, p6.
  476. ^ The wrestling championship of Cornwall, Cornishman, 21 June 1883, p6.
  477. ^ Wrestling, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 1 July 1888, p41.
  478. ^ Championship of the world wrestling match, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 24 June 1887, p6.
  479. ^ a b Wrestling at Penzance, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 27 August 1886, p7.
  480. ^ a b Wrestling, Lake's Falmouth Packet and Cornwall Advertiser, 18 December 1886, p5.
  481. ^ Cornish wrestling matches, The Cornish Telegraph, 5 May 1887, p1.
  482. ^ Political matters, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 6 May 1887, p7.
  483. ^ Cornish wrestling matches, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 7 May 1887, p7.
  484. ^ Carkeek wins a match, Daily Alta California, 19 April 1886, p5.
  485. ^ a b Singular death of Durham Ivey, A Cornish wrestler, Cornishman, 20 December 1894, p6.
  486. ^ Chasewater wrestling, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 2 September 1887, p5.
  487. ^ Wrestling in Michigan, Cornishman, 27 September 1894, p3.
  488. ^ Mining Fair, The record-union (California US), 25 February 1898, p41.
  489. ^ Tallywarren Notes, Cornish Post and Mining News, 22 September 1898, p7.
  490. ^ The Wrestling Championship of the world, Cornish & Devon Post, 09 July 1887, p3.
  491. ^ Wrestling match at Plymouth Carkeek vs Bragg, Cornishman, 25 August 1887, p5.
  492. ^ a b The Wrestling Championship, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 6 August 1887, p5.
  493. ^ The championship of the world, The Cornish Telegraph, 4 July 1889, p5.
  494. ^ Wrestling, The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW), 20 August 1887, p411.
  495. ^ The wrestling championship contests at Redruth, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 4 July 1889, p7.
  496. ^ a b Wrestling that disables, Boxing World and Mirror of Life, 5 June 1901, p14.
  497. ^ Great Wrestling match at Ishpenning Michigan, Cornishman, 2 October 1890, p3.
  498. ^ News from foreign mining camps, Cornishman, 16 November 1905, p3.
  499. ^ Wrestling Challenge - A wrestling challenge to whom it may concern, West Briton, 30 November 1886.
  500. ^ Wrestler Jack Carkeek, The Sunday Leader, Wilkes-Barre Pennsylvania, 21 December 1890, p7.
  501. ^ Sports of all sorts, The Anaconda Standard 29 March 1891, p9.
  502. ^ Jack Brady won, The Wheeling Register 22 December 1893, p1.
  503. ^ a b Jack Carkeek, the Cornish wrestling wonder, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 5 August 1905, p3.
  504. ^ Carkeek, Cornishman, 21 July 1887, p4.
  505. ^ Cornish wrestling, Cornishman, 21 April 1887, p4.
  506. ^ Cornwall, Royal Cornwall Gazette, 17 June 1887, p5.
  507. ^ Wrestling match at Southport, Apollo v Carkeek, Boxing World and Mirror of Life, 5 December 1900, p6.
  508. ^ Jack Carkeet arrested, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 23 September 1910, p8.
  509. ^ Michigan: Jack King to wrestle, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 21 April 1906, p3.
  510. ^ a b Jack Rowett is still champion, Camulet News, 10 January 1911, p7.
  511. ^ Over the Northwest, Camulet News, 30 July 1898, p8.
  512. ^ a b Dr Todd, Arthur Cecil : The Cornish Miner in America, D Bradford Barton Ltd (Truro), 1967, p139-141.
  513. ^ The robbery of 70,000 dollars from a train, Cornishman, 19 October 1893, p7.
  514. ^ a b Peninsula News, The L'Anse sentinel, 29 January 1898, p1.
  515. ^ Rowett still champion, Diamond Drill, 25 December 1909, p4.
  516. ^ Michigan, Cornishman, 14 April 1910, p6.
  517. ^ a b Michigan, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 23 June 1899, p8.
  518. ^ Can He Come Back, Iron Country news, 02 May 1914, p1.
  519. ^ Cornishmen will wrestle, The Madison daily leader, 20 July 1897, p1.
  520. ^ Champion Cornish wrestler of America: Jack Rowett won the title in Michigan, Cornish Post and Mining News, 17 February 1898, p5.
  521. ^ Butte city, Montanna, The Cornish Telegraph, 9 December 1909, p6.
  522. ^ Cornish wrestlers in America, The Cornish Telegraph, 25 November 1909, p3.
  523. ^ Cornish Wrestling, Cornish Post and Mining News, 12 October 1899, p6.
  524. ^ a b On Cornish Wrestling, Cornish Post and Mining News, 12 October 1899, p3.
  525. ^ Cornish wrestling notes, Cornish Post and Mining News, 20 July 1929, p7.
  526. ^ Celebrities I have seen, Cornish Post and Mining News, 17 August 1935, p7.
  527. ^ a b Cornish folk abroad, Cornishman, 10 July 1902, p3.
  528. ^ Cornish wrestling in Michigan, Cornish Post and Mining News, 30 July 1896, p6.
  529. ^ a b Cornishmen Abroad, Cornishman, 2 July 1903, p3.
  530. ^ News from foreign mining camps, Cornish Post and Mining News, 11 August 1898, p6.
  531. ^ With the wrestlers, Waterbury Democrat, 16 August 1902, p7.
  532. ^ With the wrestlers, the Cornish style will attract much attention, Waterbury Democrat, 14 February 1902, p7.
  533. ^ News from foreign mining camps, Cornishman, 5 October 1905, p2.
  534. ^ "Wrestling History: 1894". Pro Wrestling Illustrated. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  535. ^ Boxing, Bryan morning eagle, 26 November 1905, Image 6, p6.
  536. ^ a b Cornish Wrestling in America, Cornubian and Redruth Times, 12 March 1908, p10.
  537. ^ a b Grass Valley California, Cornishman, 19 March 1908, p3.
  538. ^ a b c d St Austell man's shocking death, Cornish Echo and Falmouth & Penryn Times, 28 January 1910, p6.
  539. ^ Cornish wrestling champ is dying in Montana, Daily Kennebec journal, 14 August 1908, p4.
  540. ^ Sporting Gossip Today, The Butte inter mountain, 22 January 1903, p8.
  541. ^ Gotch Wins Handily, The Morning Astorian, 12 April 1904, p1.
  542. ^ Harrington the Champion, The Cornish Telegraph, 29 July 1903, p3.
  543. ^ Famous Cornish wrestler crazy, The Butte inter mountain, 28 October 1902, p1.
  544. ^ Tim Harrington wins first prize, The Butte inter mountain, 6 July 1903, p8.
  545. ^ Jap throws all white opponents, The Ogden standard, 8 April 1910, p8.
  546. ^ Death levies toll in sport, The Daily Missoulian, 1 January 1911, p9.
  547. ^ The Calumet boy versus the champion, Cornish Post and Mining News, 29 September 1898, p6.
  548. ^ B William versus Rowett, Camulet News, 21 February 1910, p8.
  549. ^ Michigan USA, Cornish Post and Mining News, 28 September 1899, p3.
  550. ^ Sid Varney was good wrestling coach, Oredigger (US)— 4 April 1921 p3.
  551. ^ Rydholm, Fred: Harlow’s Wooden Man, Winter 1984.
  552. ^ Cornish wrestlers at Honiton, Cornish Guardian - Friday 03 September 1926, p6.
  553. ^ Crediton Wrestling Contest, Western Times, 22 April 1872, p3.
  554. ^ Swansea Jack, Liverpool Echo, 6 July 1985, p7.
  555. ^ a b The old Cornish pastime, Cornish Guardian, 27 June 1924, p7.
  556. ^ a b c d Cornish wrestling A magnificent gift, Cornish Post and Mining News, 27 September 1924, p4.
  557. ^ New enthusiasm for Cornish wrestling, Cornish Guardian, 21 March 1963, p8.
  558. ^ Another belt presented, Cornish Guardian, 17 October 1924, p6.
  559. ^ Retained county's lightweight wrestling championship, Cornish Guardian, 11 July 1963, p14.
  560. ^ Wadebridge wrestler wins featherweight title, Cornish Guardian, 1 August 1963, p11.
  561. ^ Cornish wrestling championship tournament, Cornish Guardian, 18 August 1938, p14.
  562. ^ Wrestling at Helston, Cornish Guardian, 10 September 1936, p14.
  563. ^ Wrestling, Cornish Post and Mining News, 12 September 1936, p3.
  564. ^ Wrestling finale, Cornish Guardian, 3 October 1924, p3.
  565. ^ "Grass Valley's St Pirans Day Celebration". Archived from the original on 16 February 2009. Retrieved 2011-08-19.

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