From the list on the best places you have never been to.
Who am I?
I have a life-long interest in the intersection of the real and the mythical when it comes to travel and adventuring in foreign lands. This has driven my own exploration of many parts of Asia and the Himalayan regions. One tiny nugget of information can take you on a wild journey that leads to great discoveries. Curiously, we keep losing precious knowledge through war and neglect—and then re-discover it. The finest example of lost and found cultural facets has to be hieroglyphics. The meaning of the writing was lost for over a thousand years until the discovery of the Rosetta Stone in 1799, which enabled us to decipher Egyptian temple art again. So hieroglyphics entered the realm of the mythical and then returned to reality once decoded.
Michael's book list on the best places you have never been to
Discover why each book is one of Michael's favorite books.
Why did Michael love this book?
The Ptolemaic kings of Egypt had a staggering ambition: to house all the books ever written under one roof, in the city of Alexandria. Parchments collected regardless of what the content of the books was, or which language the parchments were inscribed in. It was much more than a library: it was the world’s foremost research and scholarly institute at the time (around 2000 years ago) and was famed for its ground-breaking discoveries in fields of mathematics, the sciences, and many other forms of knowledge. But then the library burned down—and the fate of all those precious books has been a subject of much speculation.
The author, Professor Canfora, plays hard and fast with the facts—but then the ‘facts’ are scarce and murky. The book was published in 1990 and thus misses a very important chapter: in 2002, a fantastic modern Library of Alexandria was resurrected as a wonderful circular…