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DAVID LIVINGSTONE David Livingstone was one of the most revered and respected African explorers of his time He spent almost 30 years exploring a region little known to the outside world He often put ambition before family and his own personal health in his quest to open the interior of Africa to Civilization Christianity and CommerceHollett 236 Through his daring explorations into the unknown he discovered and documented many new landmarks inside the dark continent and at times became obsessed with his determination to find a single source of the Nile He had a major impact on later expeditions into central Africa Livingstone was born to a poor Scottish family in 1813 Starting at age ten Livingstone worked in a cotton mill while pursuing his studies at night He was an avid reader and would often stay up until twelve or later buried in a book Livingstone enjoyed reading on a variety of subjects but read mostly scientific works and explorers journals As a boy David made few friends Others described him as quiet sulky and unremarkable Yet despite this David was a tireless worker and extremely motivated toward his goals By age 17 Livingstone had decided he wanted to leave the mill and become a doctor Livingstones father a deeply religious man wanted him to go into a religious field and would not allow him to go Livingstone eventually convinced his father to let him go to school and become a missionary in China After finishing school Livingstone had planned to go to China to perform his missionary duties but because of the Opium War Livingstones plans were altered He continued his studies and became a respected member of the medical community Soon though he offered his services to the London Missionary Society and was assigned to a mission in Africa Early knowledge and exploration of Africa was
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