Ernst Georg Ravenstein
Ernst Georg Ravenstein (Ernest George) (30 December 1834 – 13 March 1913) was a German-English geographer cartographer and promoter of physical exercise. As a geographer he was less of a traveller than a researcher; his studies led mainly in the direction of cartography and the history of geography.
Ravenstein was born in Frankfurt am Main, Germany to a family of cartographers. When he was 18 years old he became a pupil of Dr. August Heinrich Petermann. After moving to England, Ravenstein became a naturalized British Subject and was in the service of the Topographical Department of the British War Office for 20 years (1855–75). A long-serving member of the councils of the Royal Statistical and Royal Geographical Societies, he was also Professor of Geography at Bedford College in 1882–83. He was the first to receive the Victoria gold medal of the Royal Geographical Society (1902) for geographical research.
His statistics and projections were much respected and used as a basis for official planning at the time; he had even predicted that human population would grow beyond the earth's capacity by the mid-20th century. (Subsequent developments in agriculture and fertilizers have altered the basis of that projection.)
He established a theory of human migration in the 1880s that still forms the basis for modern migration theory. It considered the implications of distance and different types of migrant, with women more likely than men to migrate within the country of their birth but less likely than men to leave the country of their birth.
In 1861 Ravenstein established the German Gymnastics Society, a sporting association, in London. It promoted gymnastics and held annual athletic competitions, at a purpose-built German Gymnasium in St Pancras and at The Crystal Palace. By 1866, the society had 1,100 members, drawn from more than 30 nationalities, with 650 members being Britons, mostly tradesmen. With William Penny Brookes and John Hulley, he was a founder member of the National Olympian Association in 1866, which promoted an annual series of sporting events across the country, inspired by the Olympic Games of Much Wenlock. He published a handbook on gymnastics in 1867.
His Systematic Atlas (1884) put into practice many his ideas as to methods of teaching cartography. The Philips's World Atlas was published with Ravenstein's plates and statistics for several decades. His Map of Equatorial Africa (1884) was the most notable map of a large part of the continent on a large scale that had been made up to that time, and he immediately developed it as new discoveries were made in Central and Eastern Africa.
Ravenstein also published:
- Vasco da Gama's First Voyage (1898)
- The Russians on the Amur (1861) (Full text can be found on Google Books).
- Handy Volume Atlas (1895; seventh edition, 1907)
- Martin Behaim. His Life and his Globe (1908)
- A Life's Work (1908)
- The New Census Physical, Pictorial, and Descriptive Atlas of the World (1911)
- Philips' Handy-Volume Atlas of the World containing seventy seven New and Specially Engraved Plates with Statistical Notes & Complete Index (Fourteenth edition, revised to date)
- History of cartography article for the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica's 'Map' entry.
- The destiny of the race, The Times, 5 August 1918
- E.G. (Ernest George) Ravenstein (1834-1913) The Use of Migration as an Explanatory Concept in Archaeology
- CTRL (Channel Tunnel Rail Link) Exhibition in German Gymnasium, January 2008
- Beale, Catherine (2011). Born out of Wenlock, William Penny Brookes and the British origins of the modern Olympics. DB Publishing. p. 58. ISBN 978-1-85983-967-6.
- Dr. E. G. Ravenstein, Obituaries, The Times, Wednesday, Mar 19, 1913; pg. 9
This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Gilman, D. C.; Thurston, H. T.; Moore, F., eds. (1905). "article name needed". New International Encyclopedia (1st ed.). New York: Dodd, Mead.
- Works written by or about Ernest George Ravenstein at Wikisource
- "Ernest George Ravenstein: The Laws of Migration, 1885" by John Corbett, Center for Spatially Integrated Social Science