Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The World of Ahmed Bey Hassanein


My round-up of Gilf Kebir websites was posted a couple of weeks back, but here's another site which may be of interest to anyone else who is interested in the background to exploration and survey in Egypt's Western Desert (with my thanks to Harry Robbins for sending me the link). The 1924 National Geographic article is particularly well worth the read. Hassenein Bey's excelelnt book The Lost Oases is now published by AUC.

Ahmed Bey Hassanein―an Oxford-graduate Egyptian, grandson of the last Admiral of Egyptian fleet, son of Al-Azhar Professor, diplomat, Olympic champion, Photographer, Writer, King's tutor, politician and a world-famous legendary explorer of the 1920s.

Those pages of SaharaSafaris.org are dedicated to information about his 1923 expedition in which he discovered Owenat in the Libyan Desert that brought him to fame and later a meteoric political career.

You'll find here the only occurrence on the web of the article he wrote to National Geographic (American magazine) in September 1924 complete with 47 impressive photos of his that were scanned directly from the magazine itself (he had movies too). Not only is his accounts are funny, witty, and romantic, but is terribly exciting as well. (A pdf version good for printing could be downloaded here).

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