geography

What are men to rocks and mountains?

“What are men to rocks and mountains?” ― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice Human exploration of and travel through mountains dates back millennia. It’s only in the last few centuries, though, that exploration of mountains for exploration’s sake, or for sport and tourism, has come into existence. Ice cave on Marmolada, Austrian National Library, Public […]

Read More

The Greatest Traveller in History? The Life and Places of Ibn Battuta

Ibn Battuta, or ‘Abu Abd al-Lah Muhammad ibn Abd al-Lah l-Lawati t-Tangi ibn Batutah’ to give him his full name, is a strong contestant for the greatest traveller in history. Not only did he travel a distance greater than the diameter of the Earth, he did most of it overland, travelling in caravans at a […]

Read More

Travelling through Mongolia with two gramophones

Enjoy a guest post by Sabine Schostag, Statsbiblioteket, edited by Imogen Greenhalgh. A version of this post appeared first on February 4, 2016 on Europeana Sounds blog. This is a story about Danish traveller and adventurer Henning Haslund-Christensen and his expeditions to Inner Mongolia. During his travels, Haslund-Christensen collected voices. In fact, this is the […]

Read More

Lost in unknown seas: Exploring an Arctic mystery

On the cloudy morning of 19 May 1845 – a small town, Greenhithe, in England’s Southeastern tip, was a hive of excitement and activity. Festivities were focused around the town’s dock where two great ships – HMS Erebus and Terror – were preparing to cast off. Their destination? The still-uncharted Northwest Passage of the Arctic, where […]

Read More

Life on the edge: the story of St Kilda

With its sheer cliffs and glassy waters, the archipelago St Kilda sits at the northern tip of the British isles, the westernmost part of the Outer Hebridean islands. As you might expect from such a far-flung location, the distance from the mainland plays an important role in the island’s history. The population of St Kilda […]

Read More

Illustrated Maps

Adventurers love them, explorers devise them, and everyone uses them – maps. From cave paintings to ancient maps of Babylon, Greece, and Asia, through the Age of Discovery (15th – 17th century) up until today, people have created and used maps as the essential tools to help them define, explain, and navigate their way through […]

Read More

Marco Polo – the man who brought China to Europe

Italian explorer Marco Polo was born on 15th September 1254 and died on the 8th or 9th January 1324. We’re not sure which because in Venetian law the day ends at sunset not midnight, so we only know he died more or less on this day 690 years ago. ‘Roma – Dettaglio del ritratto di […]

Read More

The Battle to Cross the Atlantic

Next week, I will be crossing the Atlantic Ocean on my non-stop flight from Amsterdam to Philadelphia. A common occurrence I hear you say, however a little over a 100 years ago, people were literally dying in their attempts to fly this particular stretch of ‘the pond’. Map of the North Atlantic Ocean – 1867. […]

Read More