Cyprus in the 18th Century from the Descriptions of Two Swedish Travellers

assilios Sabatakakis - Senior Lecturer, Centre for Languages and Literature, Lund University



This paper focusses on two Swedish travellers, Edvard Carleson (1704-1768) and Fredric Hasselquist (1722-1752). Carleson journeyed to the Mediterranean and served as a diplomat at the Swedish Embassy in Istanbul. In 1733 he travelled to Cyprus, along with the diplomat Fredrik von Höpken, and he wrote a description of the island and its economy, as well of its human resources. This description was published in Sweden in 1760. His writings reveal his interest in the local economies of the countries he visited in relation to Sweden’s economic policy.

Hasselquist was a botanist and student of Linnaeus. In 1749 he travelled to the Mediterranean to study herbs and take samples to Sweden. In May 1751 he reached Cyprus and he recorded information not only about the nature of the island, but also about its people and ancient and modern history. Both of these travellers wrote in-depth and interesting descriptions of Cyprus based on their scientific experiences – the first as an economist and the second as a botanist – following the guidelines of apodemic literature.



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