OIde-world travel

In July 1816, former British Navy officer John Whitworth Bennett arrived in Ceylon with the prospect of employment in the Civil Service. His career in the colony was no great success, however, for he fell out with his superiors, even with Governor Sir Edward Barnes, against whom he brought charges of corruption and misuse of government funds. Eleven years later, Bennett left the island for good, taking with him a storehouse of knowledge that saw expression in several invaluable books published after his return to England. One of them was Ceylon And Its Capabilities: An Account Of Its Natural Resources, Indigenous Productions, And Commercial Facilities (1843). This volume contained travel description and advice, in particular 'maxims for the tourist's observance' that reveal the concerns of the time, some of them valid even today.

Let us begin with the mosquito, the bane of every tourist throughout the centuries. Bennett suggests an ingenious method of erecting a mosquito net that avoided the need for what became known as the 'mosquito dose':

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Himal Southasian