L’ornoque Et Le Caura: Relation De Voyages Executes En 1886 Et 1887
Jean Chaffanjon (1854-1913) was a natural history teacher in the French colony of Martinique who was commissioned by the French minister of state education and fine arts to explore the Orinoco Delta in Venezuela. The Orinoco had an almost mythical reputation as a source of gold and coffee, and Chaffanjon in 1886-1887 was the first European explorer in the region in almost 100 years. Landing in the city of Guayra, he travelled up two of the continent’s largest rivers, the Caura and the Orinoco, documenting the region’s geology and his encounters with the indigenous population. His account of the journey was published in Paris in 1889, at a time when adventure literature was hugely popular in Europe. The book includes 56 engravings and two maps drawn by the French travel and nature artist Auguste Morisot. Chaffanjon’s adventures were the direct inspiration for Jules Verne’s Le Superbe Ornoque.