Author(s): Peter Unwin
The English Channel separates Britain from Europe, keeping invaders out of Britain and making the island and islanders different from the continent and their fellow Europeans. But the Channel also serves as a link between mainland and island, bearing settlers, missionaries, merchants, refugees and conquerors back and forth over the millennia. Explorers and adventurers have sailed its waters, and leaders from Julius Caesar to Napoleon and Hitler have battled for sovereignty over these narrow seas. Peter Unwin tells the story of the English Channel from the land-bridge that linked Britain to the continent nine thousand years ago to the Channel tunnel of the 21st century, charting the landscape and seascape of northern Europe's gateway to the oceans.