Scrambles amongst the Alps

Mont Blanc from Helbronner (Image credit: Andrew Thompson)

  • Devonport Lecture Theatre, Portland Square Building (use Block A entrance), University of Plymouth

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Why did people in the 18th and 19th centuries become fascinated by high mountains which had previously been regarded as desolate wastelands? What drove them, and especially the English, to risk their lives on perilous first ascents of unclimbed summits?

Drawing on paintings, photographs, climbers' journals and literature, this illustrated talk by Andrew Thompson follows in the footsteps of the first climbers and the local shepherds and chamois hunters who became their guides. It explores the social and cultural history of Alpinism through personal stories of obsession, endurance, heroism, rivalry and disaster, from the dramatic first ascent of Mont Blanc to Edward Whymper's epic tragedy on the Matterhorn.

The lecture is free and open to all - no booking is required. Doors open at 18:30 for 19:00 start.

Contact Alan Smith on 01752 588670 or Colin Kilvington on 01752 564972 for enquiries.

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