Sven Hedin collection

Scope and Content

The collection comprises of correspondence by Hedin to Robert Falcon Scott written after the latter's return from the Antarctic on the British National Antarctic Expedition, 1901-1904.

Administrative / Biographical History

Sven Anders Hedin was born in 1865 in Stockholm. He was educated at the University of Stockholm and studied geography and geology at the Universities of Uppsala and Berlin, receiving a doctorate in 1892. In 1890, he served briefly as an interpreter with the Swedish-Norwegian embassy to the Shah of Persia, later travelling throughout Asia and publishing A journey through Asia in 1898.

Between 1893 and 1935, Hedin made four expeditions to Central Asia, and in 1902, received a Swedish knighthood. From 1927 to 1935, he travelled in the Gobi Desert and Turkestan with a team of international scientists. In 1930, he received the first Hedin medal for significant geographic, especially cartographic, research of less known areas. From 1937 to 1949, he worked on numerous volumes concerning his expedition to northern China. He died on 26 November 1952 in Stockholm.

Published work, Von Pol zu Pol. (Neue Folge) Vom Nordpol zum Aquator. (Letzte Folge) Durch Amerika zum Sdpol (German) by Sven Hedin, F.A. Brockhaus, Leipzig (1912) SPRI Library Shelf (#42;2)91(091) and Adolf Erik Nordenskild, en levnadsbeskrivning (Norwegian) by Sven Anders Hedin, Albert Bonnier, Stockholm (1926) SPRI Library Shelf 92[Nordenskild, A.E.]


The correspondence is arranged chronologically.

Access Information

By appointment.

Some materials deposited at the Institute are NOT owned by the Institute. In such cases the archivist will advise about any requirements imposed by the owner. These may include seeking permission to read, extended closure, or other specific conditions.


Anyone wishing to consult material should ensure they note the entire MS reference and the name of the originator.

The term holograph is used when the item is wholly in the handwriting of the author. The term autograph is used when the author has signed the item.

Descriptions compiled by N. Boneham, Assistant Archivist with assistance from R. Stancombe and reference to Robert Keith Headland Antarctic Chronology, unpublished corrected revision of Chronological list of Antarctic expeditions and related historical events, (1 December 2001) Cambridge University Press (1989) ISBN 0521309034 and Books and writers

Other Finding Aids

Clive Holland Manuscripts in the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, England - a catalogue, Garland Publishing New York and London (1982) ISBN 0824093941.

Additional finding aids are available at the Institute.

Conditions Governing Use

Copying material by photography, electrostat, or scanning device by readers is prohibited. The Institute may be able to provide copies of some documents on request for lodgement in publicly available repositories. This is subject to conservation requirements, copyright law, and payment of fees.

Copyright restrictions apply to most material. The copyright may lie outside the Institute and, if so, it is necessary for the reader to seek appropriate permission to consult, copy, or publish any such material. (The Institute does not seek this permission on behalf of readers). Written permission to publish material subject to the Institute's copyright must be obtained from the Director. Details of conditions and fees may be had from the Archivist.


Further accessions possible.