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The Journey to the Polar Sea   By: (1786-1847)

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The Journey to the Polar Sea by John Franklin is an enthralling and poignant account of one man's relentless pursuit to navigate the treacherous and uncharted waters of the Arctic. Set against the backdrop of the early 19th century, Franklin's expedition to uncover the elusive Northwest Passage becomes a gripping tale of adventure, discovery, and perseverance.

Franklin, an experienced explorer, presents his narrative in a humble yet gripping manner, outlining the challenges faced by his crew from the very first page. His attention to detail and unwavering dedication to scientific observations make this book not only an incredible adventure story but also an invaluable historical record.

The author's vivid descriptions transport readers to the awe-inspiring and often unforgiving Arctic landscape. As we follow the crew's voyage, the reader becomes immersed in the frigid temperatures, vast icebergs, and the constant battle against nature's harsh elements. Franklin's ability to convey both the beauty and cruelty of the Arctic drives the sense of urgency throughout the book.

What truly distinguishes this book is its exploration of the psychological and emotional toll on the crew as they face incredible hardships. Franklin skillfully depicts the relentless grip of isolation, uncertainty, and icy desolation on the human spirit. Through his personal reflections and the anecdotes of his fellow adventurers, we witness the raw strength and resilience required to survive such an arduous journey.

Furthermore, Franklin highlights the importance of indigenous knowledge and the understanding of local communities. He respectfully engages with the Inuit people, embracing their wisdom and adopting their survival techniques. This aspect of the book not only showcases Franklin's openness to learn from others but also offers a refreshing perspective on cultural exchange and cooperation.

The Journey to the Polar Sea is a gripping and thought-provoking account of one of history's most daunting explorations. Franklin's eloquent prose, combined with his intimate understanding of Arctic exploration, create a truly immersive reading experience. It is a must-read for anyone fascinated by adventure, history, and the indomitable human spirit.

First Page:



Everyman, I will go with thee, and be thy guide, In thy most need to go by thy side.

(This is Number 447 of Everyman's Library)


JOHN FRANKLIN, born in 1786. Many naval experiences, including Trafalgar, before heading an expedition across northern Canada in 1819. Elected F.R.S. and knighted after a second expedition. Lieutenant Governor of Van Diemen's Land, 1836 to 1843. Last expedition, 1845, was lost, and Franklin died in 1847 near the Arctic. Subsequent investigations have established him as the discoverer of the North West Passage.





In days of hurried action I have been astonished at the depth of interest which a re perusal of this wonderful old narrative has held for me. Wonderful it is in its simplicity and its revelation of the simplicity of character and faith of the man who wrote it. It is old only by comparison scarcely ninety years have elapsed since the adventures it described were enacted yet such a period has never held a fuller measure of change or more speedily passed current events into the limbo of the past.

Nothing could more vividly impress this change than the narrative itself... Continue reading book >>

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