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133644.  Thu Jan 11, 2007 12:55 pm Reply with quote

The other Explorers thread is really about the moon landing. Post here your general exploring snippets.

Question: How many people did the famous explorer and missionary David Livingstone convert to Christianity during his 33-year career with the London Missionary Society?

Forfeit: Lots, I presume.

Answer: one, briefly.

According to Clare Pettit's biography, Livingstone's only convert was an African chief who lapsed shortly afterwards due to "the temptations of polygamy".

(on edit: actually he wasn't working for the LMS latterly)

Last edited by Flash on Thu Jan 11, 2007 1:05 pm; edited 1 time in total

133649.  Thu Jan 11, 2007 12:58 pm Reply with quote

This needs checking:

CLAIM: When the English pilgrims landed in the New World they were surprised to discover that one of the first Native Americans they met had lived in England for many years.

ANSWER: TRUE. The story of Squanto, the English-speaking Native American whom the Pilgrims met when they disembarked from the Mayflower, is one of the stranger tales American history has to offer. Squanto had been taken from his village by a British captain around 1605. He lived in England for nine years and was sold into slavery in Spain in 1614. He eventually made his way back to England, and from there back to Massachusetts in 1619. By that time he had crossed the Atlantic a total of six times, making him far better traveled than the Pilgrims who arrived soon thereafter. By the Pilgrims' own admission they would have had difficulty surviving their first years in Massachusetts without the help of Squanto.


133651.  Thu Jan 11, 2007 1:04 pm Reply with quote

James Holman, remarkable blind explorer:

James Holman (October 15, 1786 July 29, 1857), known as the "Blind Traveler," was a British adventurer, author and social observer, best known for his writings on his extensive travels. Not only completely blind but suffering from debilitating pain and limited mobility, he undertook a series of solo journeys that were unprecedented in their extent. In 1866, the journalist William Jerdan wrote that "From Marco Polo to Mungo Park, no three of the most famous travelers, grouped together, would exceed the extent and variety of countries traversed by our blind countryman."

Holman was born in Exeter, the son of an apothecary. He entered the British Royal Navy in 1798 as first-class volunteer, and was appointed lieutenant in April 1807. In 1810, while on the Guerriere off the coast of the Americas, he was invalided by an illness that first afflicted his joints, then finally his vision. At the age of 25, he was rendered totally and permanently blind.

In recognition of the fact the his affliction was duty-related, he was in 1812 appointed to the Naval Knights of Windsor, with a lifetime grant of care in Windsor Castle. This position demanded he attend church service twice daily as his only duty in return for room and board, but the quietness of such a life harmonized so ill with his active habits and keen interests, physically making him ill, that he requested multiple leaves of absence on health grounds, first to study medicine and literature at the University of Edinburgh, then to go abroad on a Grand Tour from 1819 to 1821 when he journeyed through France, Italy, Switzerland, the parts of Germany bordering on the Rhine, Belgium and the Netherlands. On his return he published The Narrative of a Journey through France, etc. (London, 1822).

He again set out again in 1822 with the incredible design of making the circuit of the world from west to east, something which at the time was almost unheard of by a lone traveler, blind or not - but after traveling part way through Russia, he was suspected by the Czar of being a spy, and was arrested after he had managed to penetrate as far east as the Mongolian frontier of Irkutsk. After being conducted under arms back to the frontiers of Poland, he returned home by Austria, Saxony, Prussia and Hanover, when he then published Travels through Russia, Siberia, etc. (London, 1825).

Shortly afterwards he again set out to accomplish by a somewhat different method the design which had been frustrated by the Russian authorities; and an account of his remarkable achievement was published in four volumes in 1834-1835, under the title of A Voyage Round the World, including Travels in Africa, Asia, Australasia, America, etc., from 1827 to 1832.

133751.  Thu Jan 11, 2007 4:59 pm Reply with quote

On the subject of exploration, this week's In Our Time is about Mars and they talk of the requirement to sterilise any spacecraft which are intended to land on Mars (and sterilise them again if they are equipped to return) so that neither planet infects the other with microbes. Could be developed, maybe.

135138.  Tue Jan 16, 2007 8:06 am Reply with quote

Some mileage maybe in speculation as to how inter-planetary travel would work, in practical terms, for astronauts - presumably plans of some sort exist in NASA feasibility studies?

143485.  Wed Feb 07, 2007 5:01 am Reply with quote

Q: What use is a plank in outer space?

The Planck Surveyor is a European Space Agency / NASA collaboration, a space doohickey due to be launched in 2008 to check out and image Cosmic microwave background radiation and thereby provide information on such matters as the origin of the universe and where/what all that pesky dark matter & energy are.

Notes to include something on dark matter and something on Archimedes because this might come up:
Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.

143493.  Wed Feb 07, 2007 5:13 am Reply with quote

The Apollo 11 crew were quaranteened for three weeks after their return, just in case they had 'Moon Cooties'.

146017.  Mon Feb 12, 2007 10:21 am Reply with quote

They also got to meet President Nixon whilst in quarantine

As you can see, they had to crouch down to look through the window of the quarantine box. There's a priceless piece of footage of the event which I can't find just now where the american national anthem was played. Naturally the astronauts, along with everyone else, had to stand for the anthem, which gave rise to the hilarious image of Nixon standing next to a silver box with a window showing just the midriff of three astronauts.

155599.  Sun Mar 11, 2007 7:42 am Reply with quote

Flinders, the first person to chart the whole of the Australian coastline, had to put into French-owned Mauritius and consequently be imprisoned as a spy for seven years because his ship Investigator had dry rot.

Molly Cule
156728.  Thu Mar 15, 2007 6:18 am Reply with quote

Thomas Nuttall (1786-1859) was an excellent botanist who studied flora in N-W America. As an explorer, his work was characterized by the fact that he was permanently lost. During his expedition of 1812 his colleagues had to light beacons in the evening to guide him back to camp.

One night he failed to return and a search party was sent out. As it approached Nuttall assumed they were Indians and ran away. The annoyed rescuers pursued him for three days through bush and river until he accidentally wandered back to camp. Another time Nuttall was so tired he lay down, he looked so pathetic that a passing Indian picked him up, carried him to the river and paddled him home in a canoe.

s- a book of failures

Molly Cule
160318.  Tue Mar 27, 2007 6:23 am Reply with quote

The first explorers in Asia were Buddhist monks who travelled in search of religious truth. They crossed the Taklimakan desert and crossed the Himalayas collecting manuscripts, relics and sculptures of the Buddha.

Molly Cule
160356.  Tue Mar 27, 2007 7:13 am Reply with quote

The Grand Eunuch, Cheng Ho (1371-1435) made seven vogayes of exploration reaching Arabia, the Coast of Africa and maybe even Australia. He sailed 50,000 km and visited 30 countries in some of the largest ships ever built, navigated using a compass and measured time by burning incence sticks.

162352.  Mon Apr 02, 2007 9:55 am Reply with quote


162362.  Mon Apr 02, 2007 10:27 am Reply with quote


162373.  Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:31 am Reply with quote

I made some of those yesterday. Perhaps, even as I type, there are worlds within them at an inconceivably small scale, that might have evolved intelligent life, and are about to end with the Big Crunch.


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