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Unbeaten Tracks in Japan

Isabella Bird's Unbeaten Tracks in Japan was published in 1880 and recounts her travels in the Far East from 1876. Bird was recommended an open-air life from an early age as a cure for her physical and nervous difficulties. She toured the United States and Canada, New Zealand, Australia and the Sandwich Islands, before travelling to the Far East in order to strengthen herself to marry Dr John Bishop and live in Edinburgh. Created out of the letters Bird wrote home, primarily to her sister, Volume 1 recounts her experiences as a solo woman traveller living among the Japanese in Yokohama and Niigata. It includes descriptions of clothing, food and drink, education, housing, theatre, women's lifestyles, religion, plant life, medicine, shopping and other day-to-day activities, as well as the vicissitudes and excitement of the conditions and process of travelling, including by boat and pack-horse.
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Table of Contents

Introductory chapter; 1. First view of Japan; 2. Sir Harry Parkes; 3. Yedo and Tokiyo; 4. Lifeless heat; 5. Narrow grooves; 6. Dr. Hepburn; 7. Theatrical reform; 8. Kwan-non Temple; 9. Fears; 10. A Japanese idyll; 11. The beauties of Nikko; 12. A Japanese pack-horse and pack-saddle; 13. Peaceful monotony; 14. Comfort disappears; 15. A fantastic jumble; 16. The plain of Wakamatsu; 17. An infamous road; 18. A hurry; Notes on missions in Niigata; 19. Temple Street; 20. Abominable weather; 21. Mean streets; Notes on food and cookery; 22. The canal-side at Niigata; 23. Comely kine; 24. Prosperity; 25. The effect of a chicken; 26. The necessity of firmness; 27. A silk factory; 28. A plague of immoderate rain; 29. The symbolism of seaweed; 30. A holiday scene; 31. The fatigues of travelling; 32. Good-tempered intoxication; 33. Torrents of rain; 34. Hope deferred; 35. A lady's toilet; 36. A travelling curiosity; 37. A hard day's journey.

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