By Simon Winchester
Mixing historical past and anecdote, geography and memory, technology and exposition, the New York Times bestselling writer of Krakatoa tells the breathtaking saga of the amazing Atlantic Ocean, atmosphere it opposed to the backdrop of mankind's highbrow evolution
Until one thousand years in the past, no people ventured into the Atlantic or imagined traversing its tremendous infinity. yet as soon as the 1st bold mariners effectively navigated to a ways shores—whether it was once the Vikings, the Irish, the chinese language, Christopher Columbus within the north, or the Portuguese and the Spanish within the south—the Atlantic developed within the world's transforming into recognition of itself as an enclosed physique of water bounded through the Americas to the West, and through Europe and Africa to the East. Atlantic is a biography of this big area, of a sea which has outlined and decided rather a lot concerning the lives of the thousands who dwell beside or close to its tens of millions of miles of coast.
The Atlantic has been principal to the pursuits of explorers, scientists and warriors, and it maintains to impact our personality, attitudes, and desires. Poets to potentates, seers to sailors, fishermen to foresters—all have a courting with this nice physique of blue-green sea and regard her as good friend or foe, adversary or best friend, looking on condition or fortune. Simon Winchester chronicles that dating, making the Atlantic come vividly alive. Spanning from the earth's geological origins to the age of exploration, global battle II battles to fashionable pollutants, his narrative is epic and awe-inspiring.
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Extra resources for Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms,and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories
The boat surfed in on the green breaking top of an ocean roller into the tiny harbor, its skipper tying up for just enough time to let me clamber out onto a cement quay lethal with slippery eelgrass. A staircase of rough stones rose up to the skyline, and I scrambled upward, only too well aware of the deep chasm filled with boiling surf far below beside me. But I made it. Up on top there were a scattering of houses, a church, a shop, and a tiny inn, its sitting room heavy with the smell of pipe smoke and warm wet sweater wool.
And the Atlantic, the once much feared Great Outer Sea, the most carefully studied and considered of them all, was not always there, and it will not remain either where it is or what it is. For an ocean to begin, a planet must have two elemental essentials. One is water. The other is land. The enormous tonnage of water4 that presently exists has not always been there, of course—but recent research suggests that it came into existence fairly soon after the earth was first coalesced out of clouds of space-borne planetesimals, almost five billion years ago.
He asked, in a kindly way. “Keep it, then. This is a very grand ocean—and you’re on a White Empress crossing her. Nothing finer! ” This 26,000-ton liner, the third to carry the name Empress of Britain, was launched on the Clyde by Queen Elizabeth in 1955. It was one of the three “White Empress” warhorses that took passengers between Liverpool and Montreal until 1963, when competition from airlines forced her from service. By sailing time a watery sun had appeared and was lowering itself toward the horizon.