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©2018 BY AUSTRALIAN ART HISTORY/Andrea Hope

Early Australian Exploration
 1600 - 1800

At around CE 150 a brilliant Greek astronomer named Ptolemy drew a map of the world, speculating that land masses might lie beyond the known European world. Like many others, Ptolemy believed there was a Great South Land to balance the landmass of the Northern Hemisphere.

 

He called his imagined land Terra Australis Incognita – the unknown south land.

 

Maps drawn around the 5th Century AD showed the world shaped like a sphere, with the three known continents of the Northern Hemisphere balanced by a similar landmass to the south of the equator. 

Centuries later, explorers set out to discover this great southern land.

Listed below are some of those voyages. (see more at the Museum of W.A.) There are also links via the images to relevant website with more information.

Willem Janszoon
Duyfken
1606
Dirk Hartog
Eendracht
1616
Adrian Jacobsz/ Francisco Pelsaert
Batavia
1629
Abel Tasman
1642 & 1644
Willem De Vlamingh
1697
 
 
 
 
 
 
William Dampier
Cygnet & Roebuck
1688 & 1699
Jean Francois Marie de Surville
1769
 
 
James Cook
HM Barque Endeavour
1770
Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne
1772
 
 
Jean-François de Galaup, Comte de La Pérouse
L’Astrolabe and La Boussole
1778
 
Nicholas Baudin
L’Astrolabe and La Boussole
1802
 
Matthew Flinders
Reliance and Investigator
1795 - 1802

If you have any questions or comments, please contact me.

Town and Country 1872, Cook's Landing at Botany Bay, 1770, 1872, National Library

After circumnavigating New Zealand, Cook’s expedition sailed west for Van Diemens Land (Tasmania) but winds forced the Endeavour north and the expedition came upon the east coast of Australia in April 1770. For the next four months, Cook mapped the east coast from Eden to the Gulf of Carpentaria. At a brief and simple ceremony at Botany Bay, Cook named the entire east coast of Australia New South Wales.

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