The Map That Changed the World

A Tale of Rocks, Ruin and Redemption

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0141941642

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 352

View: 3632

The extraordinary tale of the father of modern geology. Hidden behind velvet curtains above a stairway in a house in London's Piccadilly is an enormous and beautiful hand-coloured map - the first geological map of anywhere in the world. Its maker was a farmer's son named William Smith. Born in 1769 his life was beset by troubles: he was imprisoned for debt, turned out of his home, his work was plagiarised, his wife went insane and the scientific establishment shunned him. It was not until 1829, when a Yorkshire aristocrat recognised his genius, that he was returned to London in triumph: The Map That Changed the World is his story.

The Map That Changed the World

A Tale of Rocks, Ruin and Redemption

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0140280391

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 338

View: 4476

The first geological map was made by an Oxfordshire farmer's son called William Smith. His life was beset with troubles: his work was plagiarized, he was imprisoned for debt, his wife went insane and the scientific establishment shunned him. This is the tale of his life and work in modern geology.

Krakatoa

The Day the World Exploded

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0141926236

Category: History

Page: 448

View: 5874

Simon Winchester's brilliant chronicle of the destruction of the Indonesian island of Krakatoa in 1883 charts the birth of our modern world. He tells the story of the unrecognized genius who beat Darwin to the discovery of evolution; of Samuel Morse, his code and how rubber allowed the world to talk; of Alfred Wegener, the crack-pot German explorer and father of geology. In breathtaking detail he describes how one island and its inhabitants were blasted out of existence and how colonial society was turned upside-down in a cataclysm whose echoes are still felt to this day.

The Map That Changed the World

William Smith and the Birth of Modern Geology

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 0061978272

Category: Science

Page: 368

View: 9201

In 1793, a canal digger named William Smith made a startling discovery. He found that by tracing the placement of fossils, which he uncovered in his excavations, one could follow layers of rocks as they dipped and rose and fell—clear across England and, indeed, clear across the world—making it possible, for the first time ever, to draw a chart of the hidden underside of the earth. Smith spent twenty-two years piecing together the fragments of this unseen universe to create an epochal and remarkably beautiful hand-painted map. But instead of receiving accolades and honors, he ended up in debtors' prison, the victim of plagiarism, and virtually homeless for ten years more. The Map That Changed the World is a very human tale of endurance and achievement, of one man's dedication in the face of ruin. With a keen eye and thoughtful detail, Simon Winchester unfolds the poignant sacrifice behind this world-changing discovery.

A History of the World in 12 Maps

Author: Jerry Brotton

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0143126024

Category: History

Page: 544

View: 2382

An engaging survey of 12 maps from Ancient Greece to Google Earth examines how they have had a profound influence on how the world is seen, revealing how historical geographical depictions were subject to deliberate manipulations to promote a range of special interests. 30,000 first printing.

Outposts

Journeys to the Surviving Relics of the British Empire

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 9780061978326

Category: History

Page: 400

View: 1302

Simon Winchester, struck by a sudden need to discover exactly what was left of the British Empire, set out across the globe to visit the far-flung islands that are all that remain of what once made Britain great. He traveled 100,000 miles back and forth, from Antarctica to the Caribbean, from the Mediterranean to the Far East, to capture a last glint of imperial glory. His adventures in these distant and forgotten ends of the earth make compelling, often funny reading and tell a story most of us had thought was over: a tale of the last outposts in Britain's imperial career and those who keep the flag flying. With a new introduction, this updated edition tells us what has happened to these extraordinary places while the author's been away.

The River at the Center of the World

A Journey Up the Yangtze, and Back in Chinese Time

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

ISBN: 1466867493

Category: Travel

Page: 432

View: 3424

Rising in the mountains of the Tibetan border, the Yangtze River, the symbolic heart of China, pierces 3,900 miles of rugged country before debouching into the oily swells of the East China Sea. Connecting China's heartland cities with the volatile coastal giant, Shanghai, it has also historically connected China to the outside world through its nearly one thousand miles of navigable waters. To travel those waters is to travel back in history, to sense the soul of China, and Simon Winchester takes us along with him as he encounters the essence of China--its history and politics, its geography and climate as well as engage in its culture, and its people in remote and almost inaccessible places. The River at the Center of the World is travel writing at its best: lively, informative, and thoroughly enchanting. A stunning tour of China, its people, and its history. Chosen as one of the best travel books of 1996 by the New York Times Book Review.

The Seashell on the Mountaintop

A Story of Science, Sainthood, and the Humble Genius who Discovered a New History of the Earth

Author: Alan Cutler

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780525947080

Category: History

Page: 228

View: 9792

Documents the work of a seventeenth-century scientist and priest who was the first to conduct geological studies of the earth's layers, revealing in the process the planet's significant age as compared to biblical beliefs. 22,500 first printing.

The Alice Behind Wonderland

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199753342

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 128

View: 363

On a summer's day in 1858, in a garden behind Christ Church College in Oxford, Charles Dodgson, a lecturer in mathematics, photographed six-year-old Alice Liddell, the daughter of the college dean, with a Thomas Ottewill Registered Double Folding camera, recently purchased in London. Simon Winchester deftly uses the resulting image--as unsettling as it is famous, and the subject of bottomless speculation--as the vehicle for a brief excursion behind the lens, a focal point on the origins of a classic work of English literature. Dodgson's love of photography framed his view of the world, and was partly responsible for transforming a shy and half-deaf mathematician into one of the world's best-loved observers of childhood. Little wonder that there is more to "Alice Liddell as the Beggar Maid" than meets the eye. Using Dodgson's published writings, private diaries, and of course his photographic portraits, Winchester gently exposes the development of Lewis Carroll and the making of his Alice. Acclaim for Simon Winchester "An exceptionally engaging guide at home everywhere, ready for anything, full of gusto and seemingly omnivorous curiosity." --Pico Iyer, The New York Times Book Review "A master at telling a complex story compellingly and lucidly." --USA Today "Extraordinarily graceful." --Time "Winchester is an exquisite writer and a deft anecdoteur." --Christopher Buckley "A lyrical writer and an indefatigable researcher." --Newsweek

Atlantic

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: HarperCollins UK

ISBN: 0007341393

Category: Atlantic Ocean

Page: 498

View: 1105

This book is enhanced with content such as audio or video, resulting in a large file that may take longer to download than expected. The enhanced e-book contains:15 videos with the author throughout the enhanced e-book, taking readers into his home and where he writes as he describes his travels around the Atlantic *A Personal Photo Album of Simon's travels not included in the print book or e-book *A Video Glossary with definitions of over 60 words*31 Footnotes unique to the enhanced e-book *8 Inserts throughout the book found only in the enhanced version, including the history of Vikings, the evolution of humans, and more.

The Men Who United the States

America's Explorers, Inventors, Eccentrics and Mavericks, and the Creation of One Nation, Indivisible

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 006207962X

Category: History

Page: 512

View: 2864

Simon Winchester, the acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of Atlantic and The Professor and the Madman, delivers his first book about America: a fascinating popular history that illuminates the men who toiled fearlessly to discover, connect, and bond the citizenry and geography of the U.S.A. from its beginnings. How did America become “one nation, indivisible”? What unified a growing number of disparate states into the modern country we recognize today? To answer these questions, Winchester follows in the footsteps of America’s most essential explorers, thinkers, and innovators, such as Lewis and Clark and the leaders of the Great Surveys; the builders of the first transcontinental telegraph and the powerful civil engineer behind the Interstate Highway System. He treks vast swaths of territory, from Pittsburgh to Portland, Rochester to San Francisco, Seattle to Anchorage, introducing the fascinating people who played a pivotal role in creating today’s United States. Throughout, he ponders whether the historic work of uniting the States has succeeded, and to what degree. Featuring 32 illustrations throughout the text, The Men Who United the States is a fresh look at the way in which the most powerful nation on earth came together.

Atlantic

Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms,and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 9780062020109

Category: History

Page: 528

View: 9913

"Variably genial, cautionary, lyrical, admonitory, terrifying, horrifying and inspiring…A lifetime of thought, travel, reading, imagination and memory inform this affecting account." —Kirkus Reviews (starred review) Blending history and anecdote, geography and reminiscence, science and exposition, New York Times bestselling author Simon Winchester tells the breathtaking saga of the Atlantic Ocean. A gifted storyteller and consummate historian, Winchester sets the great blue sea's epic narrative against the backdrop of mankind's intellectual evolution, telling not only the story of an ocean, but the story of civilization. Fans of Winchester's Krakatoa, The Man Who Loved China, and The Professor and the Madman will love this masterful, penetrating, and resonant tale of humanity finding its way across the ocean of history.

The Professor and the Madman

A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 9780061807602

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 288

View: 3477

New York Times Bestseller Simon Winchester’s classic about the making of the Oxford English Dictionary—soon to be a major motion picture starring Sean Penn and Mel Gibson. The making of the Oxford English Dictionary was one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken. As definitions were collected, the overseeing committee, led by Professor James Murray, was stunned to discover that one man, Dr. W. C. Minor, had submitted more than ten thousand. But their surprise would pale in comparison to what they were about to discover when the committee insisted on honoring him. For Dr. Minor, an American Civil War veteran, was also an inmate at an asylum for the criminally insane. Masterfully researched and eloquently written, The Professor and the Madman is an extraordinary tale of madness, genius, and the incredible obsessions of two remarkable men that led to the making of the Oxford English Dictionary—and literary history. “The linguistic detective story of the decade.... Winchester does a superb job of historical research.”—William Safire, New York Times Magazine

The Cycle of Cosmic Catastrophes

How a Stone-Age Comet Changed the Course of World Culture

Author: Richard Firestone,Allen West,Simon Warwick-Smith

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1591439647

Category: Body, Mind & Spirit

Page: 416

View: 5312

Newly discovered scientific proof validating the legends and myths of ancient floods, fires, and weather extremes • Presents new scientific evidence revealing the cause of the end of the last ice age and the cycles of geological events and species extinctions that followed • Connects physical data to the dramatic earth changes recounted in oral traditions around the world • Describes the impending danger from a continuing cycle of catastrophes and extinctions There are a number of puzzling mysteries in the history of Earth that have yet to be satisfactorily explained by mainstream science: the extinction of the dinosaurs, the vanishing of ancient Indian tribes, the formation of the mysterious Carolina Bays, the disappearance of the mammoths, the sudden ending of the last Ice Age, and the cause of huge underwater landslides that sent massive tsunamis racing across the oceans millennia ago. Eyewitness accounts of these events are chronicled in rich oral traditions handed down through generations of native peoples. The authors’ recent scientific discoveries link all these events to a single cause. In The Cycle of Cosmic Catastrophes Richard Firestone, Allen West, and Simon Warwick-Smith present new scientific evidence about a series of prehistoric cosmic events that explains why the last Ice Age ended so abruptly. Their findings validate the ubiquitous legends and myths of floods, fires, and weather extremes passed down by our ancestors and show how these legendary events relate to each other. Their findings also support the idea that we are entering a thousand-year cycle of increasing danger and possibly a new cycle of extinctions.

Jewels

A Secret History

Author: Victoria Finlay

Publisher: Ballantine Books

ISBN: 9780345493354

Category: History

Page: 496

View: 3800

Throughout history, precious stones have inspired passions and poetry, quests and curses, sacred writings and unsacred actions. In this scintillating book, journalist Victoria Finlay embarks on her own globe-circling search for the real stories behind some of the gems we prize most. Blending adventure travel, geology, exciting new research, and her own irresistible charm, Finlay has fashioned a treasure hunt for some of the most valuable, glamorous, and mysterious substances on earth. With the same intense curiosity and narrative flair she displayed in her widely-praised book Color, Finlay journeys from the underground opal churches of outback Australia to the once pearl-rich rivers of Scotland; from the peridot mines on an Apache reservation in Arizona to the remote ruby mines in the mountains of northern Burma. She risks confronting scorpions to crawl through Cleopatra’s long-deserted emerald mines, tries her hand at gem cutting in the dusty Sri Lankan city where Marco Polo bartered for sapphires, and investigates a rumor that fifty years ago most of the world’s amber was mined by prisoners in a Soviet gulag. Jewels is a unique and often exhilarating voyage through history, across cultures, deep into the earth’s mantle, and up to the glittering heights of fame, power, and wealth. From the fabled curse of the Hope Diamond, to the disturbing truths about how pearls are cultured, to the peasants who were once executed for carrying amber to the centuries-old quest by magicians and scientists to make a perfect diamond, Jewels tells dazzling stories with a wonderment and brilliance truly worthy of its subjects. From the Hardcover edition.

The Perfectionists

How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World

Author: Simon Winchester

Publisher: HarperCollins

ISBN: 0062652575

Category: History

Page: 416

View: 4956

The revered New York Times bestselling author traces the development of technology from the Industrial Age to the Digital Age to explore the single component crucial to advancement—precision—in a superb history that is both an homage and a warning for our future. The rise of manufacturing could not have happened without an attention to precision. At the dawn of the Industrial Revolution in eighteenth-century England, standards of measurement were established, giving way to the development of machine tools—machines that make machines. Eventually, the application of precision tools and methods resulted in the creation and mass production of items from guns and glass to mirrors, lenses, and cameras—and eventually gave way to further breakthroughs, including gene splicing, microchips, and the Hadron Collider. Simon Winchester takes us back to origins of the Industrial Age, to England where he introduces the scientific minds that helped usher in modern production: John Wilkinson, Henry Maudslay, Joseph Bramah, Jesse Ramsden, and Joseph Whitworth. It was Thomas Jefferson who later exported their discoveries to the fledgling United States, setting the nation on its course to become a manufacturing titan. Winchester moves forward through time, to today’s cutting-edge developments occurring around the world, from America to Western Europe to Asia. As he introduces the minds and methods that have changed the modern world, Winchester explores fundamental questions. Why is precision important? What are the different tools we use to measure it? Who has invented and perfected it? Has the pursuit of the ultra-precise in so many facets of human life blinded us to other things of equal value, such as an appreciation for the age-old traditions of craftsmanship, art, and high culture? Are we missing something that reflects the world as it is, rather than the world as we think we would wish it to be? And can the precise and the natural co-exist in society?

The Rise of Conservation in South Africa

Settlers, Livestock, and the Environment 1770-1950

Author: William Beinart

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199541221

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 456

View: 5781

This book traces debates about environmental degradation in successive eras of South African history. It offers a reinterpretation of South Africa's economic development, and of aspects of the Cape colonial and South African states. It expands the understanding of English-speaking South Africans and their role both as farmers and as protagonists of conservationist ideas. It paints an evocative picture of the post-conquest Karoo, analysing the impact ofself-consciously progressive farmers and officials in their attempts to secure private property, curtail transhumance and kraaling, control animal diseases, enhance water supplies, eradicate jackals, destroy alien weeds such as the prickly pear, and combat drought. It concludes by analysing conservationistinterventions in the African areas, and di

The Abyss of Time

A study in geological time and Earth history

Author: Paul Lyle

Publisher: Dunedin Academic Press

ISBN: 1780465432

Category: Science

Page: 256

View: 9621

Geologists are among that group of scientists who must factor the passage of time into their investigations and they thus have a perspective on time that sets them apart from many other researchers. The proposition that geological time is vast, encompassing thousands of millions of years, is relatively recent. It is a concept that remains controversial and unacceptable to many people today who still consider the Earth to have been made to a timetable covering no more than ten thousand years. Paul Lyle examines how our fascination with time has developed from our earliest ancestors' recognition of the cycles of the sun and the moon. It considers the passage of time as a series of non-repeatable events, Time's Arrow, in contrast to time as a series of repeated processes, Time's Cycle, both of which can be used to explain geological features on the Earth's surface. The author argues for a greater understanding of geological or ‘deep time’ as society becomes more aware of the vulnerability of the Earth's resources to over-exploitation by an expanding consumer society. This debate and the controversy surrounding global warming emphasises the importance of geological time to the process of economic and political decision-making. It is a book for those interested in the intellectual challenge presented by the extent of geological time. It is written for environmentalists and policy-makers who wish to better place their concerns and decisions in proper context but, above all, it is a book that offers to share a geologist’s appreciation of time with the widest possible audience. Winner of the ASE Science Book of the Year Award 2016.

Facets of Knowledge Organization

Proceedings of the ISKO UK Second Biennial Conference, 4th-5th July, 2011, London

Author: Alan Gilchrist,Judi Vernau

Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing

ISBN: 1780526148

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 416

View: 1979

The ISKO UK Biennial Conference, 4th - 5th July, 2011, London honoured the life and achievements of Brian C. Vickery. His influence on the development of the information profession is celebrated in this book, with contributions from over 50 authors to address research and developments in knowledge organization, ranging from the theoretical basis of information retrieval to the practical application of ontologies in driving news and sport presentation on the BBC website. ISKO UK is a not-for-profit scientific/professional association with the objective of promoting research and communication in the domain of knowledge organization, within the broad field of information science and related disciplines - www.iskouk.org