Burton, Sir Richard (Francis)

born March 19, 1821, Torquay, Devonshire, Eng.
died Oct. 20, 1890, Trieste, Austria-Hungary

English scholar-explorer and Orientalist.

Expelled from Oxford in 1842, Burton went to India as a subaltern officer. There he disguised himself as a Muslim and wrote detailed reports of merchant bazaars and urban brothels. He then traveled to Arabia, again disguised as a Muslim, and became the first non-Muslim European to penetrate the forbidden holy cities; he recounted his adventures in Pilgrimage to El-Medinah and Mecca (1855–56), a classic account of Muslim life. In 1857–58 he led an expedition with John Hanning Speke in search of the source of the Nile River; stricken with malaria, he turned back after becoming the first European to reach Lake Tanganyika. His travels resulted in a total of 43 accounts of such subjects as Mormons, West African peoples, the Brazilian highlands, Iceland, and Etruscan Bologna. He learned 25 languages and numerous dialects; among his 30 volumes of translations were ancient Eastern manuals on the art of love, and he larded his famous Arabian Nights translation with ethnological footnotes and daring essays that won him many enemies in Victorian society. After his death his wife, Isabel, who was a devout Catholic, burned his 40 years of diaries and journals.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Burton,Sir Richard Francis — Burton, Sir Richard Francis. 1821 1890. British explorer and Orientalist. Disguised as a Pathan, he journeyed (1853) to the forbidden cities of Mecca and Medina and in 1858 tried unsuccessfully to discover the source of the Nile River. His best… …   Universalium

  • Burton, Sir Richard Francis — (1821 1890)    Burton studied at Trinity College, Oxford, became a talented linguist and had a colorful life: intrepid traveler, linguist, scholar, soldier, anthropologist, and a prolific and gifted writer. He published 43 volumes on his… …   British and Irish poets

  • BURTON, SIR RICHARD FRANCIS —    traveller, born in Hertfordshire; served first as a soldier in Scind under Sir C. Napier; visited Mecca and Medina as an Afghan pilgrim; wrote an account of his visit in his Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage, &c. ; penetrated Central Africa… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Burton, Sir Richard (Francis) — (19 mar. 1821, Torquay, Devonshire, Inglaterra–20 oct. 1890, Trieste, Austria Hungría). Explorador erudito y orientalista inglés. Expulsado de Oxford en 1842, viajó a la India como funcionario subalterno. Allí se disfrazó de musulmán y escribió… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Burton, Sir Richard Francis — (1821 1890)    Explorer and scholar, s. of an officer in the army, was b. at Barham House, Herts, and after a somewhat desultory education abroad as well as at home, entered upon a life of travel, adventure, and military and civil service in… …   Short biographical dictionary of English literature

  • Sir Richard Francis Burton — Richard Francis Burton Pour les articles homonymes, voir Burton. Richard Francis Burton …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Burton, Sir Richard — ▪ British scholar and explorer Introduction in full  Sir Richard Francis Burton   born March 19, 1821, Torquay, Devonshire, Eng. died Oct. 20, 1890, Trieste, Austria Hungary [now in Italy]       English scholar explorer and Orientalist who was… …   Universalium

  • Burton, Captain Sir Richard Francis — (1821–1890)    British soldier, explorer, master linguist, and diplomat, Sir Richard Burton was best known for his dispute with John Hanning Speke about the source of the Nile River. While serving in the Indian Army, Burton became an expert in… …   Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914

  • Sir Richard Francis Burton — noun English explorer who with John Speke was the first European to explore Lake Tanganyika (1821 1890) • Syn: ↑Burton, ↑Richard Burton, ↑Sir Richard Burton • Instance Hypernyms: ↑explorer, ↑adventurer …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sir Richard Burton — noun English explorer who with John Speke was the first European to explore Lake Tanganyika (1821 1890) • Syn: ↑Burton, ↑Richard Burton, ↑Sir Richard Francis Burton • Instance Hypernyms: ↑explorer, ↑adventurer …   Useful english dictionary

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