Главная страница «Первого сентября»Главная страница журнала «Английский язык»Содержание №10/2008

Topics. Form 6

(к учебнику: Л. В. Хрусталева, В. Н. Богородицкая. Английский язык для VI класса школ с углубленным изучением английского языка, лицеев, гимназий, колледжей)

continued from No. 9


Since time began men have been trying to explore the unknown regions of our world. The discovery of the world progressed by little stages over hundreds of thousands of years. From the earliest times, and from different parts of the world, voyages of discovery set out. As long as four thousand years ago the Egyptians sailed down the East African coast as far as the Equator. About two thousand five hundred years ago the Phoenicians were probably the first men to sail round the continent of Africa. From Europe explorers made their way to the nearer regions of Africa and Asia, and as far as the New World of America, the islands of the Pacific Ocean, and both Poles. And one result of these countless voyages is the globe that we know today, which shows us the geography of our world with all its mountains, rivers, seas and islands.

The Exploration of Africa

Africa, the “Dark Continent”, was known to the Greeks in ancient times. In the Middle Ages, Italy and some other mid-European countries had African slaves. Later the Portuguese ships sailed around the entire continent. But despite these early discoveries, large areas of Central and South Africa remained unexplored and unknown well into the nineteenth century. The British missionary and explorer David Livingstone was the first European to bring light into darkest Africa.
Livingstone came of a simple family. He was trained as a doctor and priest, and in 1840 he was sent by the London Missionary Society to South Africa. In 1851, an African chief invited him on an expedition northwards that took them to the Zambezi. He followed the river and discovered Victoria Falls.

The Exploration of the Polar Regions

The Polar regions were the scenes of the last great voyages of discovery on earth. In the nineteenth century, several expeditions were launched towards the North Pole. Many expeditions perished, overtaken by the arctic winter. But now the Europeans had acquired the vital knowledge of how to survive in arctic and Antarctic winter – which made possible the expeditions of Nansen, Peary, Amundsen and Scott.
Nansen, the Norwegian explorer, on board the ship “Fram” tried to reach the North Pole but he failed. Then he tried to reach the Pole by sledge. He and his companions crossed Greenland, but the way to the Pole was too difficult, and they had to turn back. Nansen’s expedition didn’t reach the Pole, but it made a great contribution to the exploration of the North.
Robert Peary is considered to be the discoverer of the North Pole. He spent fifteen years among the Eskimos in the Far North. He used to say: “The Pole is the goal of my whole life”. Five times he tried to conquer the top of our planet. During one of the expeditions his feet were frost-bitten, but he didn’t give up. His courage, strength and will power were an example to all his companions.
On the first of June, 1910, Captain Robert Scott left London to begin his Antarctic expedition. When his ship the “Terra Nova” reached Australia, Scott received the news that Roald Amundsen, the Norwegian explorer, was also on his way south. Amundsen was the first to leave on the fifteenth of October, 1911. He had teams of dogs pulling the sledges and all his men were on skis. Because of this, he made rapid progress. Scott left on the first of November and soon had problems. His two motor sledges broke down, and then the ponies began to have serious difficulties with the snow and the cold. After a while Scott and his men had to push the sledges themselves. Amundsen reached the South Pole on the fourteenth of December and put a Norwegian flag there. Scott finally arrived at the Pole with four companions on the seventeenth of January. Their return journey was one of the worst in the history of exploration. The men were soon exhausted and were running out of food, and the weather was terrible. Scott and his men died only 11 miles away from the place where they had left a store of food. The news of Scott’s death shocked the world. He had failed to win the race, but the great courage shown by Captain Scott and his men made them into heroes.
And nowadays, as the Earth gives up its last secrets, men are turning to new worlds. Discovery is now a job for skilled scientists, mathematicians and engineers. All the time new scientific discoveries and ever more complicated technical instruments open the way for man to go even further into the unknown.

From Opportunities (Intermediate)

1. Open the brackets using the Past Tenses.
A. David Livingstone (to be) one of the most important Victorian explorers. He (to spend) thirty years travelling in Africa. Before he (to sail) to South Africa, he (to study) medicine. Livingstone (to marry) a woman he (to meet) in a Christian mission in Botswana. With his wife he (to travel) into regions where no Europeans ever (to be) before. He (to discover) the Victoria Falls after he (to follow) down the Zambezi River. He (not to think) that his second expedition up the Zambezi River by canoe (to be) so dangerous. He (not to know) that on this expedition his wife Mary (to die) of fever and many of his companions (to die) too. A few years later he (to set out) to discover the source of the Nile on foot. He (to disappear) and many people (to think) that he (to die). While Livingstone (to explore) Lake Tanganyika, he (to meet) the American journalist Henry Morton Stanley, whom the New York Herald (to send) to find him.

B. Nansen (to want) to reach the North Pole, but it (to be) very dangerous at that time. Nansen (to know) that a lot of expeditions (to perish) before but none of them (to conquer) the top of the planet. Nansen (to build) a special ship and (to call) it “Fram”. He (to believe) that the ship (to freeze) into the ice and (to move) with it northwards. He (to hope) that in this way he (to reach) the Pole. While Nansen (to sail), he (to make) a lot of important discoveries. But he (not to get) close to the Pole. Nansen (to be) sorry that he (to fail) to do it but he (not to give up). And he (to launch) another expedition to the Pole by sledge. Nansen (to be) an experienced polar explorer, he (to cross) Greenland by sledge before, and he (to acquire) vital knowledge how to survive in Arctic winter. He (to be) sure that his second expedition (to be) a successful one and he (to get) to the Pole. But the way to the Pole (to be) too difficult, and Nansen (to have) to turn back.

2. Translate from Russian into English.
Амундсен готовил экспедицию к Северному полюсу, когда пришло известие, что Пири уже открыл Северный полюс. Амундсен изменил свой план и направился не на север, а на юг.
Экспедиция Скотта плыла в Антарктику, когда пришло известие, что норвежский исследователь тоже решил направиться к Южному полюсу. Скотт надеялся первым добраться до полюса. Он был опытным (experienced) полярным исследователем и уже предпринимал попытку (to make an attempt) покорить полюс в 1902 году. Он был уверен, что в этот раз он достигнет полюса, т.к. хорошо подготовил свою экспедицию. Скотт не знал, что моторные сани сломаются, а пони погибнут, а ему самому и его людям придется тащить сани. Когда изможденные путешественники достигли полюса, они увидели, что норвежская экспедиция уже поставила там свой флаг.
Обратный путь был трагичным. К тому времени как началась сильная буря, два члена экспедиции уже погибли. Остальным пришлось поставить палатку (to put up a tent) и оставаться в ней. Они надеялись, что буря утихнет (to subside) и они быстро доберутся до того места, где оставили запасы продовольствия и топлива. Но буря все бушевала (to rage). У исследователей уже закончились еда и топливо. Скотт и его спутники погибли.
В память об их подвиге (in memory of their feat) в Антарктиде на одной из вершин полярники поставили крест, на котором написали строчку (a line) из стихов знаменитого английского поэта Альфреда Теннисона (Alfred Tennyson): “Бороться и искать, найти и не сдаваться.” “То strive, to seek, to find and not to yield.”

3. Translate the sentences.
1. К началу 19-го века европейцы еще не исследовали Центральную и Южную Африку.
2. Ливингстон открыл водопад Виктория, который до него не видел ни один европеец.
3. Многие экспедиции погибли, прежде чем Северный полюс был покорен (to be conquered).
4. Жизненно важные знания, которые исследователи приобрели в этих экспедициях, сделали возможными экспедиции Нансена, Пири, Амундсена и Скотта.
5. Пири пытался добраться до Северного полюса 5 раз, прежде чем он достиг его.
6. Все восхищались мужеством и силой воли, которые проявил Пири.
7. В то время как капитан Скотт плыл на корабле в Австралию, он получил известие, что норвежский исследователь Амундсен тоже движется на юг.
8. В то время как экспедиция Скотта еще только двигалась к Южному полюсу, Амундсен уже достиг его.
9. Когда Амундсен достиг полюса, он поставил там норвежский флаг.
10. Скотт и его экспедиция погибли в 11 милях от того места, где они оставили запасы продовольствия.


Man needs many things in his life. The thing he needs most of all is friendship. Friendship is a very important thing, that’s why people of all countries have so many proverbs about it. Here are some of them: “A good friend is like the sun in winter”, “A friend is easier lost than found”, “A friend to everybody is a friend to nobody.”
Everybody knows the proverb: “A friend in need is a friend indeed.” What does it mean? It means that a best friend helps you when you are really in need of help. We can’t but agree with the proverb: “A friend is easier lost than found.” The meaning of this proverb is: it takes a long time to become really friendly with somebody, but it is very easy to lose a friend. So you must do your best to keep friendships alive.
Another proverb is: “Before you make a friend, eat a bushel of salt with him.” Of course, you needn’t eat so much salt to become good friends, but you must know your friend very well. If you help each other and do useful and important things together, your friendship will last a very long time.
Many writers and poets wrote about friendship and mutual understanding. I would like to recite a poem by the famous English poet William Shakespeare.
He that is thy friend indeed,
He will help thee in thy need:
If thou sorrow he will weep;
If thou wake, he cannot sleep:
Thus of every grief in heart,
He with thee does bear a part.
These are certain signs to know
Faithful friends from flattering foe.

Speak about your friend.
1. Your friend’s name, age, where he (she) studies, how long you have been friends.
2. His (her) qualities, interests, hobbies.
3. What you have in common.
4. Explain why you think your friend is your true friend.

Compiled by Yuliya Levitskaya ,
School No. 1262, Moscow