A Fabulous Kingdom

A Fabulous Kingdom : The Exploration of the Arctic

3.62 (16 ratings by Goodreads)
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This volume covers the history of the exploration of the Arctic, beginning with the earliest Norse sailors and concluding with 1990s tourist excursions. The authors also explore the stories of such famous explorers as Frobisher, Franklin, Peary, Cook, Byrd, and Amudsen. Along the way, they debunk some fo the conventional wisdom about the most exalted heroes, pointing out that Fridtjof Nansen was probably the greatest Arctic explorer. Setting the scene for the narratives is a broad description of the Arctic environment, focusing on geography and climate.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 234 pages
  • 137.2 x 210.8 x 25.4mm | 453.6g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • illustrations facsimiles, maps, portraits
  • 0195123824
  • 9780195123821

Review quote

"A brisk-paced survey of a fascinating subject, A Fabulous Kingdom provides an engaging introduction to the history of Arctic exploration--with the occasional dash to the Antarctic thrown in for good measure. Beginning with the ancient Greeks and proceeding to the present, Officer and Page bring to life the passion and perseverance--and, at times, the folly and foolhardiness--that animated the mariners, explorers, and scholars who sought to unlock the secrets of the polar world. The authors' scientific backgrounds provide their history with a solid grounding--and a definite sense of place--that are particularly welcome. Portraits of familiar figures such as Nansen, Amundsen, Cook, and Peary are well-drawn, and a host of lesser-known characters come to life as well."--John McCannon, author of Red Arctic: Polar Exploration and the Myth of the North in the Soviet UNionshow more

About Charles B. Officer

Charles Officer received his Ph.D from Columbia University and is a Research Professor in the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire. He is the author of several books, including Tales of the Earth: Paroxysms and Perturbations of the Blue Planet (along with Jake Page, OUP). Jake Page is a freelance science writer, essayist and novelist, who has written for Smithsonian, National Geographic, Reader's Digest, and many other magazines. He is the author of several books, including A Certain Malice.show more

Table of contents

The nature of the place; sea lungs, godly commerce, and projections; 3 Frizadores for Cathayo and the open Polar sea; fool's gold, interest in exploration and historians; Hooch, and mutiny; connubial fidelity, and the Vicar of Wakefield; open seas and closed minds; anything is good that don't poison you; three faces of ambition; amateurs, pros, and cons; from Polar larks to canary-watching.show more

Rating details

16 ratings
3.62 out of 5 stars
5 6% (1)
4 56% (9)
3 31% (5)
2 6% (1)
1 0% (0)
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