French explorer who visited the city of Timbuktu and returned to tell his fantastic tale.
Reading Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe inspired him to make a career out of traveling.
He spent years in Senegal learning Arabic and the customs of the people before setting off on an expedition to the famed city.
He came from the lowest class of French society and his father was a former convict.
The exotic Timbuktu was the setting of Geoffrey Holder's play.