Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Sir Edmund Hillary: The Warlord of Mars

With the recent death of Sir Edmund Hillary, the conqueror of Mount Everest, on January 11, 2008, at age 88, we’ve been reading various pieces about his life and extraordinary accomplishments.

One source which stands out is the website of the Academy of Achievement, Washington, D.C. In addition to containing a profile, biography, interview, and photo gallery of Hillary, the website details one of his recommended readings, The Warlord of Mars (1919), by Edgar Rice Burroughs:
I was also a very great reader, and the books I read were initially, very largely on the adventurous sort of activities. The Warlord of Mars or Georgette Heyer and those sort of romantic adventure type things. I was a very keen walker and as I walked along the roads and tracks around the countryside, I'd be dreaming. My mind would be miles away and I would be slashing villains with swords and capturing beautiful maidens and doing all sorts of heroic things.
Pictured above: Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953, after scaling the 29,035-foot summit of Mount Everest. In contrast, Olympus Mons on Mars has an 88,580-foot summit.

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