Ferdinand de Lesseps, French engineer

Ferdinand de Lesseps, French engineer

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Credit: SHEILA TERRY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Ferdinand, Vicomte de Lesseps (1805-1894), French civil engineer. De Lesseps spent his early career in the diplomatic service before retiring in 1854 to plan the Suez Canal, a waterway to connect the Mediterranean and Red Seas. Construction work began in April 1859 and De Lesseps oversaw the digging until its completion in November 1869. As a result, he received many honours. He then began work on the Panama Canal between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Work on the sea-level scheme began in 1881 but was stopped in 1888 amid financial, engineering and political problems. De Lesseps was later charged with embezzlement. Illustration taken from The Pictorial Treasury of Famous Men and Famous Deeds (1894).

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Keywords: 1800s, 19th century, adult, artwork, builder, canal engineer, caucasian, civil engineer, coloured, engineer, engineering, ferdinand de lesseps, french, historical, history, human, illustration, male, man, panama canal, portraits, suez canal, surname l, vicomte de lesseps, white

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