Captain Cook set sail for Australia 250 years ago. Who was he and was he eaten by cannibals?

Discussion in 'Australia' started by Disir, Sep 2, 2018.

  1. Disir
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    Disir Gold Member

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    IT WAS 250 years ago, August 26, 1768 that Captain James Cook set sail on the HM Bark Endeavour from Plymouth to discover the fabled Great Southern continent.

    Cook’s voyage was meant to be a trip to Tahiti in the southern ocean to observe the transit of the planet Venus across the face of the Sun.

    It was a rare event, happening every 243 years, that Venus could be observed as a black disc passing across the Sun.

    It was an 18th century obsession, with the outlying planets Uranus, Neptune and Pluto as yet undiscovered, just how far was the Earth from the Sun?

    England’s Royal Academy had sponsored the Endeavour to chart the transit in the belief it would then be able to measure the size of the solar system.

    But Cook also had a second mission commissioned by King George III, contained in sealed orders he read only when his ship had sailed.

    His voyage would change the course of history for the inhabitants of the great land, dubbed in the English press at the time Terra Incognita in the south.

    What Cook did has been likened to space travel, although blasting off for Mars even back then would at least have been heading for a seen object.

    Cook and his ship of 94 occupants — including gentleman botanist Joseph Banks — were sailing towards a remote island in the Pacific in the hope of finding something Europe wasn’t sure even existed.
    A look at the man who set sail for Australia 250 years ago

    Dear Australia, how do you not know who Captain James Cook is?
     
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  2. Tommy Tainant
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    Tommy Tainant Gold Member

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    I seem to recall that he was killed by islanders after landing. I think that they had been welcomed there previously but on their return the mood had changed. William Bligh was one of his officers and achieved notoriety when losing the Bounty.
    There was a French ship doing the same thing at the time as well.
     
  3. Tommy Tainant
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    Tommy Tainant Gold Member

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