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The distinction between fishing for different species may not seem immediately obvious to those outside of the passion of fishing, but there is actually a deeply interesting history behind the split between ‘coarse’ fishing and the nobler hunt for trout and salmon.
Magazines such as Trout and Salmon and Total Coarse fishing, another title stocked here at Newsstand may cover very similar areas and topics, but they have very different origins. Back in the 19th century, as fishing began to become a hugely popular sport amongst the landed gentry, it was thought that fishing for trout and salmon was a proper, gentlemanly pursuit. These were game fish, noble beasts that were worth the effort. Other fish therefore became the ‘coarse’ fish, pursued by uneducated and lower class fellows. Even in something as simple as fishing, the class divisions that have been in existence in this country throughout its history are clearly evident.
We’re fairly sure that such a division isn’t true of fishermen nowadays, and that there is no inequitable treatment of angers based upon the fish they attempt to catch. Nevertheless, the titles of magazines such as these offer a fascinating insight into the history of class in Britain. NB