Isabella Bird

Sites connected with Isabella Bird where there is a published account of her 19th Century visits

Isabella L Bird 1834-1905 - Archetypal intrepid Victorian English lady explorer, writer, and a natural historian. In 1892 was the first female to be elected a member of the Royal Geographic Society.

Connected Sites

Site Rationale Link
Edinburgh Visited 1869. Describes the slums of the "Old Town" in "Notes on Old Edinburgh"
Hawaii Volcanoes Visited Hawaii in 1875 and published her travels in "The Hawaiian Archipelago. Six Months among the Palm Groves, Coral Reefs and Volcanoes of the Sandwich Islands". Letters V and XXV describe her climbs of Kilauea and Mauna Loa.
Kaesong Chapter 25 Songdo: A Royal City (Descriptions and sketches of Kaesong City Walls and Manwoldae Palace ruins) "There is a fine bronze bell with curiously involved dragons in one of the gate towers, cast five centuries ago... Outside the crowd and bustle of the city, reached by a narrow path among prosperous ginseng farms and persimmon-embowered hamlets, are the lonely remains of the Kings who reigned in Korea prior to the dynasty of which the present sovereign is the representative, and even in their forlornness they give the impression that the Korean kings were much statelier monarchs than they are now... The palace platform is intersected by massive stone foundations of halls and rooms, some of large area." Isabella Bird "Korea and Her Neighbors (pg. 292-300)
Melaka and George Town Visited in Jan/Feb 1879. Malacca is described in "The Golden Chersonese and the Way Thither" (Chapters VIII-X)
Namhansanseong "The first two days were spent in turning the flank of the range on which is the so-called fortress of Nam Han, with its priest soldiers, one of the four which are supposed to guard Seoul and offer refuge in times of trouble. On the right bank there are many villages of farmers, woodcutters, and charcoal burners. After circumventing the fine fortress summit of Nam Han, the river enters the mountains. From that time up to the head of possible navigation, the scenery in its variety, beauty, and unexpectedness exhausts the vocabulary of admiration." - Korea and Her Neighbors (pg. 83, 84)
Nikko Visited Japan in 1878 and published her travels in "Unbeaten Tracks in Japan. An account of Travels in the interior including visits to the Aborigenes of Yez and the Shrine of Nikko". The visit to Nikko commences in Letter VI (see link)
Qu├ębec Visited Quebec City in the 1850's. Describes the old city's picturesque features, as well as fortifications and citadel in "The Englishwoman in America" (pg 270) published in 1856
Royal Joseon Tombs Visited 1894, the royal tomb of a princess is described in detail with a sketch of a tomb guardian. (published in Korea and her Neighbours, a narrative of travel, with an account of the vicissitudes and position of the country Volume 1) pg. 63.


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