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The Arctic: Exploration Timeline

Arctic discovery timeline

Arctic Timeline: Ancient Times from 330 BC to 1000 AD
Arctic Timeline from 1594-1610
Arctic Timeline from 1725-1779
Arctic Timeline from 1776-1779
Arctic Timeline from 1819-1831
Arctic Timeline from 1845-1873
Arctic Timeline 1878
Arctic Timeline from 1879-1882
Arctic Timeline from 1882-1884
Arctic Timeline from 1886-1909
Arctic Timeline from 1893-1895
Arctic Timeline from 1903-1905
Arctic Timeline from 1910-1915
Arctic Timeline from 1918-1925
Arctic Timeline 1930
Arctic Timeline 1958
Arctic Timeline from 1970-1990s
Arctic Timeline from 1993-1998
Arctic Timeline from 2007-2008

Ancient Times (330 BC to 1000 AD)

ice melt in the arctic
Iceland. Photo by NASA, Visible Earth.

Erick Thorvaldsson
Erik "The Red" Thorvaldsson.

~330 BC
Pytheas of Massalia was a Greek merchant, geographer and explorer who explored Britain and the waters north of Scotland. He described an island six days sailing north of Britain called “Thule.” This may refer to Iceland, but could also have been the coast of Norway, or the Shetland or Faroe Islands. Pytheas was the first person to record a description of the midnight sun, the aurora, and Polar ice.

~870 AD
Floki Vilgerdarson, a Norwegian Viking, discovers Iceland. On his ship he carried three ravens and whenever he thought he was near land he released the ravens one by one so that they could show him the right way. The ravens always came back to the ship but one day the third raven flew forwards. Floki followed that raven and found the new land.

983 AD
Erik Thorvaldsson, known as “Erik the Red” because of his red hair and temperament, discovers and settles in Greenland. A Norwegian, he grew up in Iceland. After a fight in which he killed two men, he was exiled from Iceland, so he set off to explore to the west and discovered Greenland and settled there for the rest of his life.

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