University of Tasmania
1890-walker-discovery_of_van_diemens_land.pdf (124.61 MB)

The discovery of Van Diemen's Land in 1642; with notes on the localities mentioned in Tasman's journal of the voyage.

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posted on 2023-11-22, 10:41 authored by James Backhouse Walker
Abel, Janszoon Tasman was unquestionably one of the greatest, if not the greatest, of the navigators between Magellan, who in the early years of the 16th century first crossed the Pacific Ocean, and Cook, who in the latter years of the 18th practically opened Oceania, and Australia to Europe.
Tasman's expedition was probably the first systematic attempt made by the Dutch to explore the Great South Land.
Tn the year 1642, however, the Governor-General, Anthony Van Diemen, and the Council of Netherlands- India, determined to despatch from Batavia a properly equipped expedition, having for its sole object the discovery of the Great Southern Continent.
"This is the furthest land in the South Sea we met with, and as it has not yet been known to any European we called it Anthony Van Diemen's Land, m honour of the Governor-General, our master, who sent us out to make discoveries." After the publication of Flinders' atlas some of the early map-makers endeavoured to restore the names to their proper localities. For example, The Fredrik Hendrik Bay of Tasmania is now known as Blackman's Bay.


Publication title

Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania



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In 1843 the Horticultural and Botanical Society of Van Diemen's Land was founded and became the Royal Society of Van Diemen's Land for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science in 1844. In 1855 its name changed to Royal Society of Tasmania for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science. In 1911 the name was shortened to Royal Society of Tasmania..

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