Latest Issue

Glorious failures

In 1845 Sir John Franklin left Britain in search for the Northwest passage. He never returned. Did his crew start eating each other or were they killed by the Inuit

The discovery of George Mallory’s body on Mount Everest failed to solve the mystery of whether he reached the summit. It will, however, encourage a small but growing band of people who spend each summer trying to discover the fate of a larger, older and still more mysterious expedition in the Canadian Arctic: the Franklin expedition of 1845.

Controversial, tragic and stubborn mysteries like these have a far greater hold on the public imagination than heroic successes. Indeed, for a stiff fee you can join an annual expedition to the Arctic to seek clues to the fate of that Franklin…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect