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Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to Al-madinah and Meccah

Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to Al-madinah and Meccah by Richard Francis Burton
By: (1821-1890)

Sir Richard Francis Burton (1821 – 1890) was an English explorer, translator, writer, soldier, orientalist, ethnologist, linguist, poet, hypnotist, fencer and diplomat. He was known for his travels and explorations within Asia and Africa as well as his extraordinary knowledge of languages and cultures. According to one count, he spoke 29 European, Asian, and African languages.

Burton's best-known achievements include traveling in disguise to Mecca, The Book of One Thousand Nights and A Night, an unexpurgated translation of One Thousand and One Nights, bringing the Kama Sutra to publication in English, and journeying with John Hanning Speke as the first Europeans led by Africa's greatest explorer guide, Sidi Mubarak Bombay, utilizing route information by Indian and Omani merchants who traded in the region, to visit the Great Lakes of Africa in search of the source of the Nile. Burton extensively criticized colonial policies (to the detriment of his career) in his works and letters. He was a prolific and erudite author and wrote numerous books and scholarly articles about subjects including human behavior, travel, fencing, sexual practices, and ethnography. A unique feature of his books is the copious footnotes and appendices containing remarkable observations and unexpurgated information.

First Page:

PERSONAL NARRATIVE OF A PILGRIMAGE TO AL MADINAH & MECCAH

BY

CAPTAIN SIR RICHARD F. BURTON,

K.C.M.G., F.R.G.S., &c., &c., &c.

EDITED BY HIS WIFE, ISABEL BURTON.

"Our notions of Mecca must be drawn from the Arabians; as no unbeliever is permitted to enter the city, our travellers are silent." Gibbon, chap. 50.

MEMORIAL EDITION.

IN TWO VOLUMES

VOLUME I.

[p.xii] [Arabic text]

Dark and the Desert and Destriers me ken, And the Glaive and the Joust, and Paper and Pen.

Al Mutanabbi

[p.xv]

PREFACE TO THE MEMORIAL EDITION.

AFTER my beloved husband had passed away from amongst us, after the funeral had taken place, and I had settled in England, I began to think in what way I could render him the most honour. A material Monument to his memory has already been erected by his countrymen in the shape of a handsome contribution to the beautiful Mausoleum tent in stone and marble to contain his remains; but I also hoped to erect a less material, but more imperishable, Monument to his name, by making this unique hero better known to his countrymen by his Works, which have hitherto not been sufficiently known, not extensively enough published, and issued perhaps at a prohibitive price... Continue reading book >>


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Reviews (Rated: 5 Stars - 1 review)

Reviewer: - November 8, 2013
Detailed and objective view of his journey and the people he encountered. Burton was a true anthropologist.


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