Sir Walter Raleigh, English explorer

Sir Walter Raleigh, English explorer

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Credit: MIDDLE TEMPLE LIBRARY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Sir Walter Raleigh (1552-1618), English explorer, courtier and author, whose treasure-seeking expeditions to the Americas brought the potato and tobacco to Europe. Raleigh was a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I, but poor relations with her successor, James I, led to Raleigh's imprisonment for treason in 1603. He began a history of the world in prison. In 1616 he was released to lead a gold-seeking expedition to South America. The trip was a disastrous failure and Raleigh was again imprisoned in the Tower of London, continuing his writings before being beheaded. Artwork from Raleigh's 'The History of the World' (1652), originally from the 1617 third edition.

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