Arctic Labyrinth

Arctic Labyrinth

The Quest for the Northwest Passage

Book - 2010
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The elusive dream of locating the Northwest Passage--an ocean route over the top of North America that promised a shortcut to the fabulous wealth of Asia--obsessed explorers for centuries. While global warming has brought several such routes into existence, until recently these channels were hopelessly choked by impassible ice. Voyagers faced unimaginable horrors--entire ships crushed, mass starvation, disabling frostbite, even cannibalism--in pursuit of a futile goal. In Arctic Labyrinth , Glyn Williams charts the entire sweep of this extraordinary history, from the tiny, woefully equipped vessels of the first Tudor expeditions to the twentieth-century ventures that finally opened the Passage. Williams's thrilling narrative delves into private letters and journals to expose the gritty reality behind the often self-serving accounts of those in charge. An important work of maritime history and exploration--and as exciting a tale of heroism and fortitude as readers will find-- Arctic Labyrinth is also a remarkable study in human delusion.
Publisher: Berkeley : University of California Press, 2010.
Edition: 1st University of California Press ed.
ISBN: 9780520266278
0520266277
Characteristics: xix, 439 p., [16] p. of plates : ill. (some col.), maps (some col.) ; 24 cm.

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