Apparently today is Everest Day. It is 55th anniversary of the Sir Edmund Hilary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay's first ascent of Mount Everest.
The mountain is named after Sir George Everest, the surveyor-general of India who mapped the area in the mid 19th century. The Great Trigonometric Survey of India established the first published height of Everest in 1856 at 29,002 ft (8,840 m) (when it was known to the surveyors as Peak XV.)
"It is not known whether or not George Everest ever laid his eyes on the great mountain that bears his name, but his triangulation network was extended and used to locate the summit by Andrew Waugh, Everest's successor as Surveyor General in India. Waugh's admiration of Everest's achievements led to the naming of 'Peak XV'.
After its discovery by his team, Waugh, wrote: "... here is a mountain most probably the highest in the world without any local name that I can discover...", so he proposed "...to perpetuate the memory of that illustrious master of geographical research ... Everest." "*
I only discovered this because of the arty Google logo on the homepage.
* From Surveyhistory web site here.
Aerial view of Everest. Picture taken by Kerem Barut, source: Wikipedia.
Mount Everest from Rombok Gompa, Tibet. Photo by John Hill, source: Wikipedia