A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 01 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 647 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 01.

    62, 41, after each insert of the

   118 33, after thirteenth insert century

   165, note 7, for Keander read Theander.

A GENERAL HISTORY AND COLLECTION OF VOYAGES AND TRAVELS.

PART I.

VOYAGES AND TRAVELS OF DISCOVERY, FROM THE ERA OF ALFRED, KING OF ENGLAND, IN THE NINTH CENTURY; TO THE ERA OF DON HENRY, PRINCE OF PORTUGAL, AT THE COMMENCEMENT OF THE FIFTEENTH CENTURY.

A GENERAL HISTORY AND COLLECTION OF VOYAGES AND TRAVELS.

PART I.

Voyages and Travels of Discovery, from the era of Alfred, King of England, in the ninth century; to the era of Don Henry, Prince of Portugal, at the commencement of the fifteenth century.

CHAP.  I.

Discoveries in the time of Alfred King of England, in the ninth century of the Christian era.

INTRODUCTION.

In the midst of the profound ignorance and barbarism which overspread the nations of Western Europe, after the dissolution of the Roman empire in the West, a transient ray of knowledge and good government was elicited by the singular genius of the great Alfred, a hero, legislator, and philosopher, among a people nearly barbarous.  Not satisfied with having delivered his oppressed and nearly ruined kingdom from the ravages of the almost savage Danes and Nordmen, and the little less injurious state of anarchy and disorganization into which the weakness of the vaunted Anglo-Saxon system of government had plunged England, he for a time restored the wholesome dominion of the laws, and even endeavoured to illuminate his ignorant people by the introduction of useful learning.  In the prosecution of these patriotic views, and for his own amusement and instruction, besides other literary performances, he made a translation of the historical work of Orosius into his native Anglo-Saxon dialect; into which he interwove the relations of Ohthere and Wulfstan, of which hereafter, and such other information as he could collect respecting the three grand divisions of the world then known; insomuch, that his account of Europe especially differs very materially from that of Orosius, of which he only professed to make a translation.

Although Alfred only mounted the throne of England in 872, it has been deemed proper to commence the series of this work with the discovery of Iceland by the Nordmen or Norwegians, about the year 861, as intimately connected with the era which has been deliberately chosen as the best landmark of our proposed systematic History and Collection of Voyages and Travels.  That entirely accidental incident is the earliest geographical

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