Monday, September 05, 2016

The World’s First Travel Writer Was a Guy From Ancient Greece

You can thank second-century geographer and writer Pausanias for travel literature.

An 1819 painting of ancient Livadeia, a city "no less adorned than the most prosperous of Greek cities," wrote Pausanias. (Photo: Public Domain)

In ancient times, tourists and travelers in Greece have gotten into some pretty intense situations. An adventure-seeking traveler would bathe in the river Herkyna, then consume sacrificial meat, wander through a dark cave of Livadeia to seek out the oracle, and emerge “paralyzed with terror and unconscious both of himself and of his surroundings.” And that's just a one-day itinerary.

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