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On 1 May 1999 an American expedition, searching on Everest for the bodies of George Mallory and Sandy Irvine, found Mallory's body on a ledge at approximately 27,000 feet. The climbers carefully buried it, with appropriate ceremony, under large rocks at an undisclosed spot. They continued, without success, their search for Irvine's body and for the...
On 1 May 1999 an American expedition, searching on Everest for the bodies of George Mallory and Sandy Irvine, found Mallory's body on a ledge at approximately 27,000 feet. The climbers carefully buried it, with appropriate ceremony, under large rocks at an undisclosed spot. They continued, without success, their search for Irvine's body and for the vest-pocket Kodak camera that might have yielded evidence that Mallory and Irvine attained the summit. George Mallory's disappearance on Everest in 1924 secured a place for him as one of the accepted heroes of the 20th century: it tended, at the same time, to overshadow the course of his life as a whole and to obscure the shape and complexity of his personality. In this first full biography, David Robertson - who has had access to all the family papers - follows Mallory's life from boyhood in Cheshire and at Winchester, through the years from 1905 to 1909 at Cambridge and the years of school mastering at Charterhouse. Then on to a happy marriage, service in the First World War, and participation in the Everest Expeditions of the Twenties. Two deep devotions - to the spirit of adventure and to his family and personal friends - were the mainsprings of his life. This book, first published in 1969, shows him not only as a mountaineer of extraordinary skill and action. It portraits a man who developed lively interests in the fields of literature, the arts and the main social and political controversies of his day, and one whose circle of friends included some of his most brilliant contemporaries. Above all, it succeeds in conveying Mallory's immense but unselfconscious charm, enhanced by transparent determination to find out what was right - a charm captivating to so many, and so very different people. David Robertson came to Trinity College, Cambridge, as a Henry Fellow after graduation from Princeton. For several years he was co-editor of the American Alpine Journal. He is now retired from his position as McIntosh Professor of English at Barnard College in New York, and lives in Princeton.
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