King Solomon’s Mines by Sir H. Rider Haggard

About King Solomon’s Mines

King Solomon’s Mines was published in 1885 by English writer Sir H. Rider Haggard. The story revolves around the exploration of the hidden region by a group of adventures of finding Sir Henry Curtis’s which is led by Allan Quatermain missing brother. The entire journey is set around Africa.

Sir Henry Curtis and his friend Good Captain approached Allan Quatermain to help them find Curtis’s missing brother who was travelling to the north into the unknown in a search for the King Solomon’s Mines. Allan has a mysterious map with him that can lead the trio to their destination but until now he hasn’t taken it seriously. So, he agrees to help them in return for a share of the diamond treasure or regular stipend for his only son in case Alan is killed in the quest.

When they started off the quest Alan has very little hope that they will be able to return home alive however he still continued to set out on the journey; may be because this quest will provide him money as well as the adventure that he has been looking for. Along the way, they are joined by a stranger Umbopa who appears to be a well-spoken and handsome man but was very eager to join the trio. Their journey travels from a lot adventurous and deadly situation with lots of fights, injuries, murders etc. before they finally reached where they find what they were looking for. by the end of the story, the lives of all the three men were completely changed- for better or for worse is for the readers to figure out.

 

Allan Quatermain

Allan Quatermain is a protagonist from the King Solomon’s Mines series that came in 1885 by H. Rider Haggard. This series revolves around the life of Allan, from 18-68. The start of the novel has just turned 55. When it comes to appearance Allan is small, lean, and unattractive with short hair that sticks up and beard.

Allan’s character stands apart in the series because of his marksmanship where there is no-one who could compete with him. While during his young age he used to hunt the wild with passion and pleasure, today he hunts only because he has no other means of making a living. There is not much written about his family in the book. His home is in Durban, Natal, South Africa. Allan marries two-times unfortunately both the time we were widowed quickly. He delegates the memoirs to his only son Harry which later dies which is the beginning of the sequel “Allan Quatermain.”

Coming to Harry Quatermain, he is a medical student who died of smallpox in the hospital.

Allan was the rifle-hauling, friendly hero of the novel King Solomon’s Miner and various other adventures novels by H. Rider Haggard. The whole series of this treasure-seeking man tries to keep a proper upper lip of Proper Englishman during hunting, befriending Zulus, looking for diamonds, exploring the civilizations, and going through all the thrills of Dark Continent. Allan Quatermain first appeared in the novel in the year 1885 and later in 1887 came back with the new novel Allan Quatermain. At last in the graphic novel, The League of Extraordinary Gentleman by Kevin O’Neill and he was resurrected in 2001. While people don’t remember Rider a lot now, he was one of the authors who was considered sexist, racist, inappropriate by modern readers.

 

Sir Henry Curtis

Allan Quatermain, the narrator of the book described the Sir Henry Curtis as a man who is around in his thirties and of the biggest longest-armed and biggest chested man, he has ever seen. He has blond hair and beard with grey eyes. In the novel, he asks Allan Quatermain to help him rescue brother Nevile by discovering King Solomon’s Mines.

He offers Allan Quatermain as well as Captain Good his share of diamonds that they would find in King Solomon’s Mines if they help him find his brother

Throughout the novel, there are many instances where Sir Henry Curtis proves to be a brave and nothing short of a true hero. He kills Scragga’s son Twala while protecting maiden Foulata. He also doesn’t back away when fighting the battle for Ignosi and he accepts the single battle challenge thrown at him by Twala.

In the novel, Sir Henry Curtis shows his compassionate side as well. when Allan Quatermain and Good Captain were despairing themselves in the belief that they are going to die in the treasured chamber, Sir Henry Curtis was the one who comforted them and gave them hope. His character journey shows that he has no interest in diamonds that they will get from King Solomon’s diamond mines; all he wants is to rescue his brother safely.

Author’s Bio-

Sir H. Rider Haggard was English writer who mainly writes adventure novels which are set in exotic locations primarily in Africa. He is a pioneer of the Lost World fictional genre. King Solomon’s Mines was one of the most famous books of Sir H. Rider Haggard and later he published a sequel to the novel “Allan Quatermain. The novel of King Solomon’s Mines was so popular that it was considered as the first novel of Lost World genre.

Generally, all his novel depicted a stereotypical connection with colonialism, however, there was a strange sympathy towards the native population. Haggard also published books about social reforms and agriculture to show his experiences in Africa but also portrayed his life in Europe as well.

During his last days of writing, he was a strong competitor of Bolshevism, and he shared this position with his good friend Rudyard Kipling.

Sir H. Rider Haggard stories are still quite popular among the modern readers. However, some modern reader claimed his writing to be sexist and racist for them. on the whole, Sir H. Rider Haggard was a great influence of the Lost World genre and his books are still highly praised for his contribution to this particular genre

 

 

 

 

The movie of King Solomon’s Mines

The King’s Solomon’s Mines were first adapted in movie 1985 in which Richard Chamberlain played the role of Allan Quatermain. Other actors have played the role of Allan Quatermain in the movie was Stewart Granger in 1950 and Kendrick Hardwicke in 1937. In the movie adaptation of the novel The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen in 2001, Allan Quatermain role was played, Sean Connery.

 

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