This book explores the work of two disparate figures, John Ruskin (1819-1900) and Albert Smith (1816-60) who, together, helped transform the way the Alps were perceived in the mid nineteenth century. Both esteemed the Alps in their own way, although Ruskin''s cultural aestheticism contrasting markedly to the popular showmanship of Smith. Nevertheless, both Ruskin''s five-volumed Modern Painters (1843-60) and Smith''s theatrical shows (1852-58) describing his ascent of Mont Blanc contributed significantly to the growing popularity of the landscape, resulting in the Alpine Club (1857) and the birth of modern tourism in the region. Due to their interest in the region, the Romantic appreciation of the Alps in the early nineteenth century associated with theories of the sublime became a much more diverse phenomenon illustrating a number of key features of Victorian culture, including the relationship of ''high'' and ''popular'' culture. This book will also examine the relationship between cultural and visual forms and key elements in Victorian intellectual controversy, including the relationship of religion and science.