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Narrative of the Arctic Land Expedition to the Mouth of the Great Fish River, and Along the Shores of the Arctic Ocean: In the Years 1833, 1834, and 1835

Biography / Memoir

Series: Cambridge Library Collection - Polar Exploration

By: George Back (Author)

712 pages, 16 b/w illustrations, 1 b/w map

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Nov 2014 | #215679 | ISBN-13: 9781108070799
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £38.99 $48/€44 approx

About this book

A reprint of a classical work in the Cambridge Library Collection.

John Ross had disappeared while exploring the Northwest Passage in 1829. A lieutenant in the Royal Navy, George Back (1796-1878) had already served with John Franklin on two Arctic expeditions in 1819-22 and 1824-26. He volunteered to lead an expedition to find Ross, setting out in 1833. When Ross returned safely in 1834, Back continued his explorations down the unknown Great Fish River and mapped the Arctic coast westwards, travelling some 7500 miles in total. Valuable observations on weather, geology, entomology, magnetics and aurora are included as appendices in this 1836 publication. Engravings of Back's own illustrations further enhance the narrative. Although described by some as an opportunist and a weak leader, Back was greeted as a hero on his return and awarded the gold medal of the Royal Geographical Society. The success of this expedition enabled him to head back to the Arctic in 1836.


Preliminary chapter

1. Departure from England
2. Commencement of the expedition
3. Inquiries and embarrassments about the route
4. Difficult and toilsome ascent of Hoar Frost River
5. Digression concerning Hearne's route
6. Continue our progress
7. 'Le grand jeune homme'
8. Exemplary conduct of Akaitcho
9. Reflections
10. Instructions to Mr McLeod upon our separation
11. Gigantic boulders
12. Exhilarating influence of a hunting excursion

List of subscribers to the Arctic land expedition

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