Born in Hamburg, Henry (Heinrich) Barth (1821-1865) studied history, archaeology, geography and Arabic. He joined James Richardson's 1849 expedition to Africa, which aimed to open the interior to trade and to study slavery. Following the deaths of Richardson (1851) and his colleague Overweg (1852), Barth led the expedition alone. His travels extended to Lake Chad in the east, Cameroon in the south and Timbuktu in the west. He was the first European to use the oral traditions of the local tribes for historical research, learning several African languages, and studying the history, resources, geography and civilisations of the people he encountered. The five volumes of Travels and Discoveries include plates, engravings and detailed annotated maps. This fascinating record of a groundbreaking expedition was published in both English and German in 1857-1858, and is still regarded as a major source on African culture.
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Jonathan Swift's classic travel adventure has been adapted into an easy-reading Stepping Stones early chapter book, while keeping all the fun, humor, and unusual perspectives of the original story.
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