Punch,  50 (1866), 1–2.

Our Opening Article (After the Manner of Our Most Respected Contemporaries)





Physical Geography, Geology, War, Morality, Exploration, Imperialism, Cultural Geography, Human Development, Politics

    The author begins by justifying the need for a 'survey of mankind from China to Peru' which Punch believes is useful despite being 'incomplete' and not consistent with the 'dictates of merely scientific arrangement'. Proceeds to reflect on the unchanging extremities of the once war-torn American continent, 'facts' that show 'how little the fluctuations of the moral world disarrange the Cosmos of material nature'. Notes how many 'remarkable events' have occurred in Asia, and that 'from Lake Timour to Ceylon 'the populations are still in possession of various degrees of civilisation'. Proceeds to discuss the African continent, explaining that it 'appears to us to afford little cause for immediate agitation [...] on the part of the Englishman', and describing how it is being invaded by Ferdinand, vicomte de Lesseps 'from the north', while David Livingstone and Paul B Du Chaillu have 'penetrated' it 'in other directions'. Also believes that 'under the auspices of the intrepid Beke' that the 'fanatic chivalry' of King Kassai Theodore of Abyssinia will 'avail itself of all this enlightenment to constitute a grand central power'. (1)

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