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Clements Markham

(1830—1916) geographer


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(1830–1916), British traveler in the Andes and a major figure in the Royal Geographical Society. Through his domination of the Royal Geographical Society (RGS) from 1863 until 1905 and beyond, Sir Clements Markham became one of the most influential sponsors of exploration ever known. Born at Stillingfleet in Yorkshire, he entered the Royal Navy at the age of fourteen, served mainly on the Pacific coast of South America, developing a passionate interest in Peru and the Incas, and, in 1851, sailed to the Arctic, so sparking an equal passion for polar exploration. He left the navy to serve in what became the India Office from 1853 to 1877, developing its Geographical Section. He collected cinchona plants from South America so that quinine could be produced in India, accompanied the Napier Abyssinian Expedition in 1867, and made another trip to the Arctic in 1875.

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From The Oxford Companion to World Exploration in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: World History.


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