Narrative of an Expedition to the Zambesi and its Tributaries; and of the Discovery of the Lakes Shirwa and Nyassa. 1858-1864


Scottish missionary and explorer David Livingstone (1813–73) made three great African voyages: across the continent in 1852–56, up the Zambezi River in 1858–64, and the unsuccessful attempt to find the source of the Nile in 1866–73. Narrative of an Expedition to the Zambezi and Its Tributaries is Livingstone’s account of the second journey. It was on this voyage, in 1859, that Livingstone reached and named Lake Nyasa. In contrast to his first expedition, which made Livingstone a national celebrity, establishing him as an explorer, promoter of British imperial interests, and opponent of the slave trade, the second voyage was less successful. Lasting more than six years, it produced disappointing scientific results and resulted in the deaths of several members of the expedition. Charles Livingstone (1821–73), David’s younger brother, immigrated to the United States at a young age, studied at Oberlin College, Ohio, and Union Theological College in New York, and like his brother became a Protestant minister. He served at churches in New York and New England. Returning to Britain on leave in 1857, he was induced by David to join the Zambezi expedition. Charles kept his own journal of the voyage that David drew upon to produce this book, which appeared under the names of both brothers in 1865.

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John Murray, London


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xiv pages, 608 pages : double frontispiece, illustrations, plates, folded map ; 22 centimeters


  1. R.H. Vetch, “Livingstone, Charles (1821-1873),” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004).

Last updated: September 18, 2015