(1,406 words)

Alpinism is often synonymous with mountaineering. However, the technical and sporting aspect of Alpinism only began to take center stage from the mid-19th century, and this process narrowed the perspective. Even in this period, during which various Alpinist associations were being founded, Alpinism was defined more broadly, as a wide spectrum of engagement with the mountains from scientific observation and measurement to imparting knowledge of “land and people” to literary and artistic approaches [5. 26–28]. Even before the “golden age” of Alpinism in the mid-19th century, men and women had climbed mount…

Cite this page
Langreiter, Nikola and Lanzinger, Margareth, “Alpinism”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Executive editor of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy. Consulted online on 21 February 2018 <>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20160321

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