The history of Australia
The first recorded sighting of Australia by Europeans was in 1606, when the Dutch ship Duyfken („little dove“) under the command of Willem Jansz, sighted the western coast of Cape York. The captain wasn´t very surprised with his „discovery“ and wrote in his log-book: „There is nothing special…“. After that he left Australia. In the time the spanish ship of Luis Vaez de Torres sailed north of Cape York and throught the Torres Strait, thus proving that New Guinea was separate from any southern continent. In 1616 Dirk Hartog discovered an inscribed pewter plate in western Australia. The Dutchmen after the Jansz report were not contend and wanted to continue their succesfull colonisation of the East (India, Java, Ceylon…). In 1642 their send a great voyager from the Netherland – Abel Tasman. He discovered the island, which he called Van Diemen´s Land. Today it is called Tasmania. Tasman was looking for gold, silver and also oriental spices in the north of Australia, but he like Jansz found nothing. Therefore in the 17th century the Europe wasn´t very intrested on colonisation of Australia. In 1770 by chance Captain James Cook from England landed in the east of Australia. He called that land by law of his king George III. New South Wales. This part of Australia is most beautiful (Cook also discovered by chance The Big Wave Rock) and so captain Cook in England claimed Australia as the British colony. Joseph Banks a member of the Royal British Academy, suggested to occupate Australia by the british conviets. The situation was complicated by Declaration of Independence in USA. Great Britain can´t more use the territory in America, so it choose a new one, an Australia. The first immigration was on May 13, 1787, the „First Fleet“ set out from England on the way to Australia having on board 1,030 people of whom 700 were conviets. The commander of this fleet – Arthur Philip – landed in Botany Bay /discovered by Cook´s scientists/ and became the first governor of this colony. Well, governor Philip was in first years in Australia very schocked, when he offen was meeting armed aborigines, when he found out, the the East beach isn´t shielded before strong ocean wind and there was not a drinkwater. Fortunetly, later he reconsidered with his crew the place 12 miles further along the beach and found there a bay, which today is called Sydney like the city lying there. It was on January 26, 1788 and nowday the Australians celebrate this date.
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The History of Australia and New Zealand
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