This fearless Victorian flirted with several ways of dying while looking for the source of the Nile, entering Mecca illegally and exploring other cultures’ attitudes toward sex

Passport details
Sir Richard Francis Burton, geographer, translator, writer, soldier, orientalist, cartographer, ethnologist, spy, linguist, poet, fencer and diplomat.

Claim to fame
It says something about the shallowness of celebrity that a polylingual, dashing, brave, randy scholar who travelled through East Africa to try to find the source of Nile, translated The Arabian Nights into English and had the chutzpah to visit Mecca is overshadowed by a Welsh actor of the same name (with an admittedly nice speaking voice) who married Elizabeth Taylor a lot.

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Source: Gaurdian

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