Rigby’s Encyclopaedia of the Herring

A work in progress with no end in sight

Tagged Herring ...

A IS FOR A BEGINNING

On the fossil origins of herring in the Sea of Tethys, on the geographical spread of the Clupeidae and, in particular, our hero Clupea harengus

ARCHAEOLOGY

The earliest kitchen middens archaeological record of herring eating and why no earlier herring bones have been found

BALDIE

On the C19th Scottish origins and naming of the herring drifter known as the Baldie, including a photograph of two at Pittenweem

BALTIC HERRING

On the Baltic herring, Clupea harengus membras, found in the eastern and northern Baltic and in the Gulf of Bothnia

BATTLE OF THE HERRINGS (1429)

On the connection between Sir John Fastolf, victor at the Battle of Herrings, and Sir John Falstaff, a large Shakespearean character

BEUCKEL, Willem

On the semi-mythical C14th Dutch fisherman who may have come up with an improved method of gutting and salting herring

BLACK HERRING

On the ultra smoked and salted herring, a version of red herring, produced more for its preservation qualities than for taste or nutrition

BLOATER

On the original bloater, which may have evolved in the C17th, and the Yarmouth bloater, which was first produced there in 1835

BOHUSLÄN FISHERY

A brief history of the sporadic 'herring periods' on Sweden's Bohuslän coast and whether they're caused by sunspots or food availability

BRITTEN

On the Lowestoft-born, English composer's creative relationship with herrings, possibly spurious, certainly little commented upon

BUCKLING

On the hot-smoked herring delicacy that is buckling and its spiritual home in the small fishing town of Gudhjem on the Danish island of Bornholm

BUSS

On the large vessels developed by the Dutch for voyages to the fishing grounds off Scotland and England and for on board gutting and salting

CADGER

The derivation of the word 'cadger', a derogatory epithet for someone who tries to get things for free, and its origins in the fish trade

CANNING

The story of canning, fish in particular, and why young herrings can no longer be called sardines, either in the United Kingdom or Europe.

DIVINE PROVIDENCE

On interpreting the herring's grand migration as a gift from God, the ensuing arguments between nations and the eventual progress of science.

DRIED HERRING

An early method of preservation, continued in Native American cultures of the North West and South Korea

DRIFT OR GILL NETTING

On the nets used by drifters in a largely abandoned, but sustainable method of catching herring now developed unsustainably elsewhere

ETYMOLOGY

On the derivation of the word herring and the uncertainty attached to it, along with that, similarly uncertain, of the kipper

EUPHEMISMS

Some of the names given to herrings together with the associated logics and a brief digression on the subject of Bombay duck

FARTING

The herring's squeak or fart, from C17th Lübeck to 1980s Soviet submarine incursions into Swedish waters and a 2003 Ig Nobel Award

FASTING

On herrings and fasting, fish-based fasting on Fridays and in Lent and its origins in earlier religions, cults and/or alien contact

FEEDING

On when herrings feed, their favourite foods at different points in their life cycle and the effect of what they eat on their own oiliness

FIFIE

On the development, nature and adaptability of the sailing and steam drifters, the Fifie; its unsurprising origins on the Fife coast

FLEAS

A brief, possibly unnattractive account of fleas and their use in a Norfolk fisherman's ability to predict herring catches

GOLDEN HERRING

On the golden coloured, more lightly smoked version of red herring, once sold extensively in the Mediterranean, together with recipes

GRANDMOTHER’S RECIPES

The self-indulgent inclusion of two herring dishes appearing in my Sussex grandmother's hand-written collection of strangely intermingled poems and recipes

GREEN HERRING

A very short entry explaining what green herring is, together with a visual explanation of why the silver darlings may have acquired that name

HARENG SAUR, LE

In which the current and historical natures of Hareng Saur are considered alongside the proto-surreal works it inspired (Cros, Huysmans, Ensor)

HERRING BHURTA

Cross-cultural creation or adaptation of some genuine Indian recipe to the fish available to returning ex-pats? A dish from Harvey Day.