Within these pages readers can join the world's most important explorers in their quests for the poles, Terra Australis Incognita , El Dorado, and other remote, exotic places, and can confront the dangers that imperiled their journeys: disease, hunger, mutiny, storms, impenetrable terrain, and hostile natives. From pre-Christianity to the twentieth century, this comprehensive encyclopedia offers vivid portraits of the world's explorers, geographers, chroniclers, and inventors like Alexander the Great, Roald Amundsen, Daniel Boone, Richard F. Burton, Richard E. Byrd, Christopher Columbus, James Cook, Hernan Cortés, Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Matthew Henson, Meriwether Lewis, David Livingstone, Marco Polo, Walter Raleigh, Theodore Roosevelt, and more than 275 others. Each profile details the subject's life, personality, adventures, achievements, and the controversies, if any, surrounding the discovery. Here is Giovanni da Verrazano, devoured by West Indian cannibals; Heinrich Barth, driven by thirst to drink his own blood during his 1850 trek across the Sahara; Robert F. Scott, writing his final journal entries as he freezes to death in the South Pole; and many more. With more than 200 illustrations and maps, indices by nationality and by geographic areas of exploration, and an extensive glossary and bibliography, World Explorers and Discoverers offers armchair adventurers an unparalleled voyage.