Francois Levaillant was the first and greatest South African birder, the first major figure of modern ornithology, the creator of the first safari, the first anthropologist of the Cape and our first investigative reporter criticising colonial brutality. He predicted the rebellion of the frontier Boers and was the first to portray the dilemmas of coloured identity. His work in creating beautifully illustrated bird books of his time inspired a map for King Louis XVI that has become the most valuable African map ever produced. His Travels into the Interior of Africa was a best seller across Europe and the most widely translated text on South Africa until Nelson Mandela’s autobiography two centuries later.
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|May 4, 2023 10:00 PM