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Synopsis

Nansen’s Birthplace and Childhood Home.—Burgomaster Nansen, his Ancestor.—His Boyhood and Education.—Early Love of Sport and Independent Research. In West Aker, a short distance from Christiania, there is an old manor-house called Store Fröen. It is surrounded by a large courtyard, in the middle of which is a dovecot. The house itself, as well as the out-houses, is built in the old-fashioned style. The garden, with its green and white painted fence, is filled with fruit-trees, both old and young, whose pink and snow-white blossoms myriads of bumblebees delight to visit in springtime, while in autumn their boughs are so laden with fruit that they are bent down under a weight they can scarcely support. Close by the garden runs the Frogner River. Here and there in its course are deep pools, while in Other places it runs swiftly along, and is so shallow that it can readily be forded. All around are to be seen in winter snow-covered heights, while far away in the background a dense pine forest extends beyond Frogner Sæter,1 beyond which again lies Nordmarken, with its hidden lakes, secret brooklets, and devious paths, like a fairy-tale. And yet close by the hum of a busy city life with all its varied sounds may be heard. It was in this house that, on Oct. 10, 1861, a baby boy, Fridtjof Nansen, was born

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