History offered "no clear map" of how to deal with it, the UK prime minister told an audience at the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos. Mr Brown warned about the rising threat of protectionism and said that global co-operation was the only way forward.
He told reporters: "This is the first financial crisis of the global age. And there is no clear map that has been set out from past experience to deal with it.
From an Irish "rebel" song:
We're on the one road, sharing the one load
We're on the road to God knows where