Talk:Frank Smythe

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I doubt that it is accurate to describe Smythe as a "professional mountaineer," as there really wasn't such a thing back then. If there is a good source that verifies that he primarily made his living by mountaineering, feel free to change back and cite that source. The only source I saw in a quick survey was a web page saying he was "essentially" a professional mountaineer or somesuch--that's pretty weak. -- Spireguy 22:53, 12 January 2007 (UTC)

You are probably right that he didn't make his living being paid to go on expeditions or for that matter guiding, although I'm sure he may have done a little of the latter, he cerftainly did make some living out of writing about mountaineering, writing guide books and giving lectures. How much of a living I don't know, but in some ways, as he wrote 17 books in and around the subect and gave at least two lectures for the RGS, he probably paved some of the the way for it even though his focus was purely on the mountain at hand. (Gowron 21:17, 24 February 2007 (UTC))
Clearly what is needed is to get hold of a full biography, which surely would say whether he had another career. Maybe I'll try to get one. -- Spireguy 21:50, 24 February 2007 (UTC)
Ah, I wrote that before I looked at the new version of the page. Thanks for all of the references, that's a nice addition. Using all of those works, can you ascertain whether he (a) had another significant career/source of money or (b) had a lot of family money? If neither is the case, then something could be put back in the article about his being essentially a professional mountaineer (not in the sense of a guide), even though the profession didn't really exist then.

Also, a request: could you have used previews instead of saving so many versions of the page? It makes the history unnecessarily long. But in any case, thanks for the contributions. -- Spireguy 21:56, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

I'm a numpty!, never used previews so far, many apologies. How do you use them? (Gowron 22:04, 24 February 2007 (UTC))

I believe you could describe him as a professional mountaineer: Harry Calvert's biography hints that there wasn't a family fortune for him to inherit. The Alpine club didn't exactly embrace him, they found his commercial approach deplorable to say the least, being mostly landed gentry themselves. After discovering his vocation his explorations settled into a pattern or cycle, consisting of a climbing adventure, then return to England, putting it down on paper, get the advance and then off on the next thing. More accurately then one should describe Frank as a professional mountaineer, adventurer and author.Pafcwoody (talk) 07:10, 6 October 2010 (UTC)


I've noticed that you have an interest inf the Himalaya, mountains, people who have done things etc. My father was one of the early mountaineers John Angelo Jackson involved just after Smythe's period, everybody else after that was on the radar and I got to meet them as well, but because of where I lived Plas-y-Brenin they were just people to try and play with, fortunately they were a good lot to and playfull to a man/woman. Only after 2005 did this area become poignant. However JAJ took a huge amount of pjotographs, some of which I've scaqnned and put onto Wikipedia for him, but if you have specific requirements maybe ther is something I can find for you. I would say that JAJs knowledge as almost unsurpassed and I know nothing, it may take some time to got through over a 100,000 slides to dig up what you may need. (Gowron 22:18, 24 February 2007 (UTC))