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The First Discovery of Australia and New Guinea

Being The Narrative of Portuguese and Spanish Discoveries in the
Australasian Regions, between the Years 1492-1606, with Descriptions
of their Old Charts.

By George Collingridge De Tourcey, M.C.R.G.S., of Australasia;

Hon. Corr. M.R.G.S., Melbourne, Victoria; Hon. Corr. M.N.G.S., Neuchatel,
Switzerland; Hon. Corr. M. of the Portuguese G.S.; Hon. Corr. M. of the
Spanish G.S.; Founder (with his brother, Arthur Collingridge) and First
Vice-President of the Royal Art Society of N.S.W., Australia; Author of
"The Discovery of Australia," etc., etc.

First published 1906

"Olba a Sunda tao larga que huma banda
Esconde para o Sul difficultuoso."
CAMONS.--Os Lusiadas.


I.     In Quest of the Spice Islands
II.    Voyages to the Spice Islands and Discovery of Papua
III.   The Spice Islands in Ribero's Map
IV.    Villalobos' Expedition and Further Discoveries in Papua
V.     The First Map of New Guinea
VI.    Jave-la-Grande, The First Map of Australia
VII.   Pierre Desceliers' Map
VIII.  Desliens' Map
IX.    Mendana and Sarmiento Discover the Solomons
X.     Mendana in Search of the Solomon Islands. An Early Map of the
XI.    Queiroz's Voyage. A Spanish Map of the Bay of St. Philip and
       St. James, in Espiritu-Santo Island (New Hebrides)
XII.   Torres' Discoveries


1.  Prince Henry the Navigator
2.  Statue of Prince Henry
3.  Portuguese Fleet
4.  Magellan
5.  The Victoria
6.  The _Trinidad_ in a Squall
7.  Flying Fish (From an Old Map)
8.  Sebastian del Cano
9.  Scene in the Spice Islands
10. Tidor Volcano, seen from Ternate
11. The Cassowary
12. Spanish Ships
13. Nutmegs and Cloves, from an Old Chart
14. Banda Volcano
15. Diego do Couto's Pig
16. Malay Press
17. Spanish Ships
18. Guinea Fowl
19. Scene in New Guinea
20. Spanish Caravels
21. The Great Albuquerque
22. Bamboos
23. Guanaco
24. Marco Polo
25. Ant Hills
26. Mendana's Fleet
27. Crescent-shaped canoes
28. Scene in the Solomon Islands
29. Tinacula Volcano, from Santa Cruz
30. Queiroz's Fleet
31. An Atoll Reef
32. Type of Island Woman
33. War Drums
34. Scene in the Solomon Islands


1.  Portuguese Hemisphere
2.  Spanish Hemisphere
3.  Timor, from an Old Chart
4.  Australia and Jave-la-Grande compared
5.  Santa Ysabel Island
6.  Guadalcanal Island
7.  Santa Cruz Island
8.  The Earliest Map of the Solomon Islands
9.  Queiroz's Track
10. Tierra Australia del Espiritu Santo
11. New Hebrides
12. The Big Bay of Santo
13. New Holland
14. Torres' Track


1.  The Earliest Drawing of a Wallaby
2.  The Spice Islands, from Ribero's Official Map of the World
3.  Nova Guinea--The First Map of New Guinea
4.  Jave-la-Grande--The First Map of Australia
5.  Don Diego de Prado's Map of the Bay of St Philip and St James
    in Espiritu Santo
6.  Don Diego de Prado's Map of the Islands at the South-east end
    of New Guinea
7.  Pierre Desceliers' Map of Australia
8.  Desliens' Map of Australia
9.  Moresby's Map of the Islands at the South-east end of New Guinea
10. The Great Bay of St Lawrence
11. Bay of St Peter of Arlanza


Of the many books which have been published on subjects relating to
Australia and Australian History, I am not aware of any, since my late
friend, Mr. R. H. Major's introduction to his valuable work, "Early
Voyages to Terra Australis," which has attempted a systematic
investigation into the earliest discoveries of the great Southern
Island-Continent, and the first faint indications of knowledge that such
a land existed. Mr. Major's work was published in 1859, at a time when
the materials for such an enquiry were much smaller than at present. The
means of reproducing and distributing copies of the many ancient maps
which are scattered among the various libraries of Europe were then very
imperfect, and the science of Comparative Cartography, of which the
importance is now well recognised, was in its infancy. For these reasons
his discussion, useful though it still is, cannot be regarded as abreast
of modern opportunities. It is, indeed, after the lapse of more than a
third of a century, somewhat out of date. Having, therefore, been led to
give close attention during several years to the whole subject, I have
thought the time ripe for the present work.

The distance from the great centres and stores of knowledge at which I
have been compelled to labour will excuse to the candid critic the errors
which will no doubt be discovered; yet I feel some confidence that these
will prove to be omissions rather than positive mistakes. No pains have
been spared in investigating the full body of documents now available.

Though unable to examine personally some manuscripts of interest and
value, I believe I can truly say that I have read every book and examined
every map of real importance to the question which has been produced in
English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Dutch. I have
corresponded also largely during the past four years with many of the
most eminent members of the Geographical Societies of London, Paris,
Madrid, Lisbon, Rome, Amsterdam and Neuchatel. To these gentlemen I am
deeply indebted for searches which they have made for me in the libraries
and museums within their reach, for much information readily and kindly
afforded, and for the interest and sympathy which they had at all times
manifested in my labours. My thanks are due also to the gentlemen in
charge of the Sydney Free Public Library who kindly enriched their
collection with many rare, and very useful volumes of permanent
importance which I was unable to procure myself, and who aided my
researches by every means in their power.

I cannot hope that in a subject so vast and interesting, I shall be found
to have said the last word, yet I trust that my book may prove to be of
value, both in itself, and as directing the attention of others to a
field which should be mainly explored by residents of Australia. Such as
it is, I now send it forth, with the natural solicitude of a parent, and
commend it to the indulgence of the reader, and the kindly justice of the

Hornsby Junction,
July, 1895.


Ten years ago, Mr. George Collingridge published "The Discovery of
Australia."--a large quarto volume, bulky, erudite and expensive. It took
its place as a valuable contribution to the literature of the country,
and remains the world-accepted authority on the important and interesting
subject with which it deals. But it was in nowise suited to the general
reader--being designed more for the scholar than for the person who
desired to conveniently possess himself of authentic information relating
to the earliest annals of Australian discovery.

To meet the requirements of the general reader, and to serve as a text
book of Australian History, the present publication has been issued as a
handy compendium of the original volume.

From this book, all controversial matter has been omitted as irrelevant
to a work intended as a handbook for either scholar or student.

The valuable facsimiles of rare and ancient maps have been retained, many
illustrations have been included in the text, and the story of the
explorers has been dealt with at greater length by the author, whose
patient antiquarian research, his knowledge of European and Oriental
Languages, and his opportunities as a member of several Geographical
Societies, have given him unusual facilities for the compilation of a
work which may confidently be expected to find its way into every
scholastic, public and private library in the Commonwealth.

--The Publishers.


The discovery of a continental island like Australia was not a deed that
could be performed in a day. Many years passed away, and many voyages to
these shores of ours were undertaken by the leading maritime nations of
Europe, before the problematic and mysterious TERRA AUSTRALIS INCOGNITA
of the ancients became known, even in a summary way, and its insularity
and separation from other lands positively established.

We must not be astonished, therefore, at the strange discrepancies that
occur in early charts and narratives, for it took time to realize how
different portions of our coast lines, which had been sighted from time
to time might be connected, and how the gaps might be filled in by fresh
discoveries and approximate surveys.

The question as to who first sighted Australia, and placed on record such
discovery, either in the shape of map or narrative, will, in all
probability, ever remain a mystery.

However, that such a record was made appears evident when we consider
certain early charts, follow carefully the testimony which the evolution
of Australian cartography affords, and take cognisance of various
descriptive passages to be found in old authors.

These passages will be given here in connection with the old charts, and
followed up by the narratives of voyages in search of the "Great South

The numerous maps and illustrations have been carefully selected; they
will greatly help the student towards understanding these first pages of
the history of Australia.





"And the New South rose with her forehead bare--
Her forehead hare to meet the smiling sun--
Australia in her golden panoply;
And far off Empires see her work begun,
And her large hope has compassed every sea."


What was the relative position of European nations in the arena of
maritime discovery at the beginning of the sixteenth century?

Portugal was then mistress of the sea.

Spain, too, indulging in an awakening yawn, was clutching with her
outstretched hands at the shadowy treasure-islands of an unfinished

England had not yet launched her navy; Holland had not built hers.

Portugal had already buried a king--the great grandson of Edward III. of
England--whose enterprise had won for him the name of Henry the

Slowly and sadly--slowly always, sadly often--his vessels had crept down
the west coast of Africa; little by little one captain had overstepped
the distance traversed by his predecessor, until at last in 1497 a
successful voyager actually rounded the Cape.

Then Portugal, clear of the long wall that had fenced her in on one side
for so many thousands of miles, trod the vast expanse of waters to the
east, and soon began to plant her flag in various ports of the Indian
Ocean. [See Portuguese flags on Desliens' Map.]

Pushing on further east in search of the Spice Islands, she found
Sumatra, Borneo, the Celebes, Java, Timor, Ceram, the Aru Islands and
Gilolo; she had reached the famous and much coveted Moluccas, or Spice
Islands, and set to work building forts and establishing trading stations
in the same way as England is doing nowadays in South Africa and

[* In a chart of the East Indian Archipelago, drawn probably during the
first Portuguese voyages to the Spice Islands (1511-1513), the island of
Gilolo is called Papoia. Many of the islands situated on the west and
north-west coast of New Guinea became known to the Portuguese at an early
date, and were named collectively OS PAPUAS. The name was subsequently
given to the western parts of New Guinea. Menezes, a Portuguese
navigator, is said to have been driven by a storm to some of these
islands, where he remained awaiting the monsoonal change.]

Meanwhile the Spaniards, after the discovery of America by Columbus, were
pursuing their navigations and explorations westward with the same object
in view, and it soon dawned upon them that a vast ocean separated them
from the islands discovered by the Portuguese.

Magellan was then sent out in search of a westerly passage; he reached
the regions where the Portuguese had established themselves, and disputes
arose as to the limits of the Portuguese and Spanish boundaries.

Pope Alexander VI. had generously bestowed one-half of the undiscovered
world upon the Spanish, and the other half upon the Portuguese, charging
each nation with the conversion of the heathen within its prospective

Merely as a fact this is interesting enough, but viewed in the light of
subsequent events it assumes a specific importance.

The actual size of the earth was not known at the time, and this division
of Pope Alexander's, measured from the other side of the world, resulted
in an overlapping and duplicate charting of the Portuguese and Spanish
boundaries in the longitudes of the Spice Islands,* an overlapping due,
no doubt, principally to the desire of each contending party to include
the Spice Islands within its own hemisphere, but also to the fact that
the point of departure which had been fixed in the vicinity of the
Azores, was subsequently removed westward as far as the mouth of the

If Portugal and Spain had remained to the present day in possession of
their respective hemispheres, the first arrangement would have given
Australia and New Guinea to Portugal; whereas the second arrangement
would have limited her possessions at the longitude that separates
Western Australia from her sister States to the east, which States would
have fallen to the lot of Spain. Strange to say, this line of demarcation
still separates Western Australia from South Australia so that those two
States derive their boundary demarcation from Pope Alexander's line.

A few years after the discovery of the New World the Spanish Government
found it necessary, in order to regulate her navigations, and ascertain
what new discoveries were being made, to order the creation of an
official map of the world, in the composition of which the skill and
knowledge of all her pilots and captains were sought.

Curiously enough, as it may appear, there is an open sea where the
Australian continent should be marked on this official map.

Are we to infer that no land had been sighted in that region?

Such a conclusion may be correct, but we must bear in mind that prior to
the year 1529, when this map was made,* the Spaniards had sailed along
250 leagues of the northern shores of an island which they called the
_Island of Gold_, afterwards named New Guinea, and yet there are no signs
of that discovery to be found on the Spanish official map. It is evident,
therefore, that this part of the world could not have been charted up to
date. This is not extraordinary, for it was not uncommon in those days,
nor was it deemed strange that many years should elapse before the
results of an expedition could be known at head-quarters. In order to
realise the nature of the delays and difficulties to be encountered, nay,
the disasters and sufferings to be endured and the determination required
for the distant voyages of the period, we have but to recall the fate of
Magellan's and Loaysa's expeditions.

[* See the Ribero Map.]

Those navigators were sent out in search of a western passage to the
Spice Islands, and with the object of determining their situation.

Of the five vessels which composed Magellan's squadron, one alone, the
_Victoria_, performed the voyage round the world.

The _S. Antonio_ deserted in the Straits which received Magellan's name,
seventy odd of the crew returning to Spain with her.

The _Santiago_ was lost on the coast of Patagonia.

The _Concepcion_, becoming unfit for navigation, was abandoned and burnt
off the island of Bohol, in the St. Lazarus Group, afterwards called the

The _Trinidad_ was lost in a heavy squall in Ternate Roads, and all hands
made prisoners by the Portuguese. Many of them died, and, years after,
only four of the survivors reached their native shores.

The _Victoria_, after an absence of three years all but twelve days,
returned to Spain with thirty-one survivors out of a total crew of two
hundred and eighty. The remaining one hundred and sixty or seventy had
perished. It is true that some of those shared the fate of Magellan, and
were killed in the war undertaken in the Philippines to help their

The fate of Loaysa's armada was still more disastrous. A short
description of it will be given in the next chapter.

Notwithstanding all these drawbacks, the period was one of great maritime
activity, and many unauthorised and clandestine voyages were also
performed, in the course of which Australia may have been discovered, for
the western and eastern coasts were charted before the year 1530, as we
shall see by and by.



Whilst the Portuguese and Spaniards were fighting for the possession of
the "Spicery," as they sometimes called the Moluccas, the old dispute
about the line of demarcation was resumed in Spain and Portugal. It was
referred to a convocation of learned geographers and pilots, held at
Badajoz, on the shores of the Guadiana.

Those learned men talked and argued, and their animated discussions
extended over many months; but no decision was arrived at.

Sebastian del Cano, who had been appointed commander after Magellan's
death at the Philippines, and had returned to Spain with the remnant of
the expedition, had been called upon to report his views at the meetings,
but he, also, had not been able to prove under what longitude the Spice
Islands were situated; and now another fleet was ordered to be fitted out
to make further investigations.

It was entrusted to Garcia Jofre de Loaysa, with del Cano as pilot-major,
and other survivors of Magellan's armada.

They sailed from Coruna in July, 1525, with an armament of seven ships.
Every precaution was taken to ensure the success of the voyage, but the
expedition proved a most disastrous one notwithstanding. During a fearful
storm del Cano's vessel was wrecked at the entrance to Magellan's
Straits, and the captain-general was separated from the fleet.

Francisco de Hoces, who commanded one of the ships, is reported to have
been driven by the same storm to 55 deg. of south latitude, where he
sighted the group of islands which became known at a later date under the
name of South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands.

It was April before the rest of the fleet entered Magellan's Straits, and
the passage was tedious and dismal, several of the sailors dying from the
extreme cold. At last, on the 25th of May, 1526, they entered the Pacific
Ocean, where they were met by another storm, which dispersed the fleet
right and left.

On this occasion an extraordinary piece of good luck befel one of the
small vessels of the fleet--a pinnace or row boat, of the kind called
_pataca_, in command of Joam de Resaga, who steered it along the coast of
Peru, unknown at the time, and reached New Spain, where they gave an
account to the famous conquerer of Mexico, Fernand Cortez, telling him
that Loaysa was on his way to the islands of cloves.*

[* It is strange that this voyage, along the coasts of an hitherto
unexplored country, preceding as it did, not only the conquest of Peru by
Pizarro, but even the arrival of that _conquistadore_ in the South
Pacific Ocean, should have remained unknown by Prescott and all other
historians of the conquest of the _Land of the Incas_.]

The remnant of the fleet steered a north-westerly course when once in the
Pacific Ocean.

They were in a sore plight. Both commanders were sick, and, nearing the
Line, on the 30th of July, Loaysa died. Four days after, Sebastian del
Cano, who had escaped and weathered so many storms and dangers, expired
also, leaving the command of the expedition to Alonzo de Salazar.

Salazar steered for the Ladrones. On the 4th of September he arrived at
that group, where he met Gonzalo de Vigo, one of the seamen of the

From the Ladrones the expedition sailed for the Philippines, and on the
way Alonzo de Salazar, the third commander, died.

Martin de Iniquez was now appointed to the command, and it was November
before they came to anchor at Zamofo, a port in an island belonging to
the King of Tidor, who had become their ally during their previous

Disputes immediately arose between the Spaniards and the Portuguese
commander settled at Ternate. A war ensued, which lasted for several
years, with various degrees of success and activity, the people of Tidor
supporting the Spaniards and those of Ternate the Portuguese settlers.

Galvano, the Portuguese historian of the Moluccas, and a resident there
for many years, informs us that only one vessel of Loaysa's fleet reached
the Spice Islands. The fourth commander, Martin de Iniquez, died some
time after, poisoned, it is said, and the command of the remnant of the
expedition was entrusted to Hernando de la Torre. But the only vessel
left was found to be so much damaged in repeated actions with the
Portuguese that it had become unfit for the homeward voyage.

About this time, 1527, Fernand Cortez, the conqueror of Mexico, sent from
New Spain his kinsman, Alvaro de Saavedra, in search of Loaysa's

Saavedra set out from the Pacific coast with three armed vessels and one
hundred and ten men.

Two of the vessels were almost immediately separated from the commander,
and their destiny remains a mystery to the present day.

Saavedra, however, in command of the _Santiago_ pursued his course alone
and reached the Spice Islands, after a voyage of a little over two

His countrymen were delighted to see him, but remembering their own sad
experiences, would hardly credit that he had come from New Spain in so
short a time.

He was immediately attacked by the Portuguese, and various engagements
took place in which he was supported by the survivors of Loaysa's armada,
who had now built a brigantine out of the planks of their famous fleet of
seven vessels.

Meanwhile Saavedra, during the intervals of peace, did not neglect to
load up his good ship with spices, and, in the beginning of June, 1528,
he set sail for New Spain. The prevailing winds that had favored his
outward passage were now against him. He tried to avoid them by taking a
southerly course, and, in doing so, he fell in with the northern coast of
New Guinea, the shores of which, as I have intimated, he followed for no
less than 250 leagues.

The Spaniards found traces of gold all along this part of the country,
and Saavedra named the island _Isla del Oro_, the Island of Gold; but his
description of the natives, whom he found to be black, with short crisped
hair or wool, similar to those of the coast of Guinea in Africa, gave
rise, no doubt, to the alteration in the name, for at a later date the
island became known as _Nova Guinea_, or New Guinea.

Upon leaving the shores of New Guinea, Saavedra hoped to be able to reach
New Spain, but the head winds which still prevailed compelled him to
return to the Spice Islands.

The following year, in May, 1529, in another attempt to reach New Spain,
he again coasted along the northern shores of New Guinea; he then sailed
to the north-east, as in his previous voyage, and discovered some islands
which he called _Los Pintados_, from the natives being painted or

The people were fierce and warlike, and from a canoe boldly attacked the
ships with showers of stones thrown from slings.

To the north-east of Los Pintados several low inhabited islands or atolls
were discovered, and named _Los Buenos Jardines_, "The Good Gardens."

Saavedra cast anchor here, and the natives came to the shore, waving a
flag of peace; they were light-complexioned and tattooed. The females
were beautiful, with agreeable features and long black hair; they wore
dresses of fine matting. When the Spaniards landed, they were met by men
and women in procession, with tambourines and festal songs. These islands
abounded in cocoanuts and other vegetable productions.

From the Good Gardens Islands they set out again towards New Spain.

On the 9th of October, 1529, Saavedra died; and the next in command,
vainly attempting to make headway in an easterly direction, returned once
more to the Spice Islands.

The remnant of Saavedra's expedition reached Spain, by way of the Cape of
Good Hope and Lisbon, seven years later, in 1536.

According to Galvano, the Portuguese historian, Saavedra's discoveries in
1529 were more extensive than in 1528. He says the Spaniards coasted
along the country of the _Papuas_ for five hundred leagues, and found the
coast clean and of good anchorage.

The year that witnessed the return from the Spice Islands of the
survivors of Saavedra's expedition, 1536, witnessed also the sailing of
another fleet sent out from New Spain by Fernand Cortez to discover in
the same waters.

It consisted of two ships commanded by Grijalva and Alvarado.

The account of this voyage of discovery is very vague, and the various
writers on the subject do not entirely agree. This is due, perhaps, to
the fact that Alvarado abandoned the enterprise from the start, and went
to the conquest of Quito, in Peru, leaving the sole command to Grijalva.

It appears certain, however, that Grijalva visited many islands on the
north coast of New Guinea, and one, in particular, called _Isla de los
Crespos_, Island of the Frizzly Heads, at the entrance of Geelvinck Bay,
near which a mutiny occurred, and Grijalva was murdered by his revolted

His ship was wrecked, and the expedition came to an end, a few of the
survivors reaching the Spice Islands in 1539.

Most of the names given during the course of the exploration are
difficult to locate.

Besides the various place-names mentioned by Galvano, _Ostrich Point_,
the _Struis Hoek_ of later Dutch charts, is, perhaps, a reminiscence of
this untimely voyage.

A casoar, or cassowary, would, of course, be called an ostrich, and here
we have for the first time in history a picturesque description of that
Australasian bird.

Galvano's translator says: "There is heere a bird as bigge as a crane,
and bigger; he flieth not, nor hath any wings wherewith to flee; he
runneth on the ground like a deere. Of their small feathers they do make
haire for their idols."



I must now say a few words about the official map of the world, alluded
to on page 16. It is by Ribero, and will be found on pages 28 and 29. The
date of this map is 1529.

The portion reproduced shows the Spice Islands, and a glance at this part
of the world brings vividly to our minds the intense desire of each
contending party to possess a region that yielded the wealth that is here

The map is Spanish, and Spain has allotted to herself the lion's share,
planting her flag in the midst of "Spice and everything nice" (see
Spanish hemisphere), and relegating the Portuguese flag to the Straits of
Sunda (see Portuguese hemisphere). For thousands of miles around,
ships--the seas are dotted with specimens similar to the two included
within our small area--fleets of them, converge towards, or sail away
from these spice-bearing islands. Every quaint old craft, whether light
caravel or crazy galleon, is underwritten with the legend, _Vengo de
Maluco_, I come from the Moluccas, or, _Vay a Maluco_, I go to the
Moluccas, as though that region were the only one on the face of the
globe worthy of consideration. And all that "Province of Maluco" bears
inscriptions denoting the particular product for which each island is

These are:--
Timor, for Sandal-wood; Java, for Benzoin;* Borneo and Celebes, for
Camphor; Amboyna, for Mace and Nutmegs; and last, not least, Gilolo, for

[* Benzoin, a fragrant gum-resin obtained from Styrax Benzoin, used in
pharmacy, and as incense.]

Let us now consider some other features of this map. The overlapping of
territorial boundaries to which I have alluded, is apparent here in the
repetition of the western coast line of Gilolo.

It will be seen that the Spanish map claims Gilolo and the other Spice
Islands, such as Ternate, Tidor, Batchian, etc., since they are set down,
in the western half of the world.

This is wrong, for those islands virtually fell within the Portuguese
sphere. I have purposely drawn your attention to these deceptions and
distortions on this Spanish map because on the first map of Australia,
which we shall consider by and by, we shall see that the Portuguese made
use of similar methods which they, of course, turned to their own

For instance, they blocked the sea-way to the south of Java, and, in
other ways, restricted the approach to the Spice Islands to channels over
which they had control. Observe that the smaller islands of the East
Indian Archipelago, from Java to Flores, are not charted, although they
were well-known at the time. There must have been a reason for this, for
these missing islands are precisely those which we shall find grafted on
to the Australian continent (Jave-la-Grande) in the charts that we are
coming to.

Observe also that the south coast of Java is not marked. The reason for
this is obvious, the south coast was not known. Java, indeed, was
believed to be connected with the Great Southern Continent, and was
called _Java Major_, to distinguish it from Sumatra, which was named
_Java Minor_.

In proof of the Portuguese belief concerning the connection and size of
Java, I quote here what Camons, their immortal poet, says:--

_"Olha a Sunda* tao larger, que huma banda
Esconde pare o Sul difficultuoso."
   Os Lusiadas._
Java behold, so large that one vast end
It, covers towards the South tempestuous.

[* Another name for Java.]

Towards the year 1570, however, practical Portuguese seamen had become
aware of a more accurate shape for Java, and Diego do Couto, the
Portuguese historian, describes its shape in the following manner:--

"The figure of the island of Java resembles a pig couched on its fore
legs, with its snout to the Channel of Balabero,* and its hind legs
towards the mouth of the Straits of Sunda, which is much frequented by
our ships. The southern coast, [pig's back] is not frequented by us, and
its bays and ports are not known; but the northern coast [pig's stomach]
is much frequented, and has many good ports."

[* Modern Straits of Bali.]



After various treaties, signed at Segovia, Seville and Zaragoza, the King
of Spain renounced at last, his claim to the Spice Islands, for the sum
of 350,000 ducats.

But this agreement did not interfere with other possessions of the
Spanish crown, nor did it prevent the Spaniards from making fresh
conquests within the limits which had been allotted to them.

Meanwhile the Portuguese were more active in their explorations.

Making the Spice Islands the centre of their enterprise, under the
guidance and governorship of Galvano, the "Apostle and historian of the
Moluccas," they sent their caravels in every direction, equipping also
native junks and proas for purposes of trade and discovery. From Japan in
the north, to Timor in the south, and from Java in the west, to the
Carolines and Ladrones in the east, they penetrated everywhere.

The Spaniards on their side continued to lay claim to the islands of the
archipelago of St. Lazarus, discovered by Magellan, and, after Villalobos
expedition, called the Philippine Islands, in honour of Phillip II. of

These islands, situated outside the Spanish sphere, had fallen under
Portuguese sway by treaties with the native kings, and by conquests made
after the death of Magellan.

Of these events the Spanish government knew but little, but Magellan's
initiatory work and conquests were not to be abandoned, and Don Antonio
de Mendoza, the Viceroy of New Spain, was ordered to equip and send out a
colonising expedition without delay.

It was entrusted to Ruy Lopez de Villalobos, and set sail from New Spain
on the 1st of November, 1542.

The Armada was composed of six ships and four or five hundred soldiers.
On their way from the west coast of North America to the Philippines,
they discovered many islands in the North Pacific Ocean; among others the
Hawaiian Group, visited many years after by Cook, and named by him the
Sandwich Islands.

In 1543 one of the ships belonging to the fleet, the _San Juan_,
commanded by _Bernardo della Torre_, with _Gaspar Rico_ as first pilot,
made an attempt to return to New Spain.

But in their numerous efforts to reach America from the Great Asiatic
Archipelagoes, the Spaniards had not yet found out the proper season nor
latitude to sail in, and through their want of knowledge concerning the
periodicity of the winds in those regions, they met with many
disappointments and mishaps.

In Bernardo della Torres' attempt, many islands were discovered, and,
after sailing seven hundred leagues in their estimation, the wind
failing, they were compelled to return to the Philippines.

Meanwhile the attempt at colonisation had been a failure and the fleet
had sailed away and reached the Moluccas, to which islands della Torre

In the year 1545 the _San Juan_ was despatched again.

She was now commanded by _Inigo Ortiz de Retez, Gaspar Rico_ being still
the pilot. They sailed from Tidor in the Moluccas, in the beginning of
the year, and made extensive discoveries on the north coast of _Os
Papuas_, or Papua, which discoveries will be seen on the old Spanish
chart in the next chapter.

One of the three great Papuan rivers, the river now called the Amberno,
was discovered and was named the _S. Augustino_, and formal possession
was taken in the name of the King of Spain.



Had the Portuguese and Spanish known the map of New Guinea as we know it
nowadays they would, no doubt, have described it as a Guinea fowl, Bird
of Paradise or some such creature, as delineated above, in the same way
as they described Java and other islands in these seas.*

[* Celebes was likened to a spider, Ceram to a caterpillar, etc., etc.]

The map of Nova Guinea, shows, however, that their ideas were like all
original ideas concerning shapes of countries--imperfect.

Nevertheless, some of the principal features of the Portuguese and
Spanish discoveries in Papuas and New Guinea, up to the year 1545, are
clearly discernible.*

[* The original Portuguese and Spanish documents that were used in the
compilation of this map have been lost or have not yet come to light. Our
copy dates from the year 1600.]

It will be noticed that Gilolo is now placed in its correct position,
twenty degrees to the west of where it was placed before in Ribero's map.

It is now in the Portuguese sphere where it should be.

The Portuguese discoveries in New Guinea occupy what might be described
as the fowl's head and neck. They come under the name of OS PAPUAS, and
the islands where Menezes is said to have sojourned--_hic hibernavit
Georg de Menezes_--in the year 1526.

The three nameless large islands, between Os Papuas and Nova Guinea
represent, no doubt, the Misory Islands and Jobi of modern charts.

The Aru Islands are also charted, and the Tenimber or Timor Laut group is
indicated (although it bears no name) as having been the sojourn of
Martin Alfonso de Melo,* a Portuguese navigator, whose name has not been
otherwise recorded, as far as I know, in the history of maritime
discovery in these parts.

[* _Martin afonso de mela_, on the chart.]


The Spanish portion commemorates the expedition of Inigo Ortiz de Retez
with Gaspar Rico, in the _San Juan_, in the year 1545; some of the names
being the _Rio de S. Augustino_; the island of Ortiz, _I de Arti_; the
port of Gaspar Rico and the _I. S. Juan_, named after their little ship;
the cape named _Ancon de la Natividad de Nustra Siniora_, being the term
of their voyage which, according to Juan Gaetan, one of Villalobos'
pilots, who wrote a description of it, extended to six or seven degrees
of south latitude, must represent the modern Cape King William, or



The maps that I am going to describe in this chapter are beautiful
specimens of medieval work; they are, however, somewhat startling, for
they reveal, in a most unexpected and sudden manner, nearly the whole of
the coasts of Australia discovered, yet, without any narrative of voyage
to prepare us for the fact.

They stand alone, therefore, as the most important documents hitherto
come to light bearing on the early discovery and mapping of Australia.

They belong to a type of manuscript Lusitano-French, or Lusitano-Spanish
planispheres, which is represented by several specimens, all of which are
copies from a prototype which has either been destroyed or has not yet
been found.

As the original model, or prototype, is of a date anterior to 1536, they
may be considered collectively notwithstanding the apparent later date
of some of them.*

[* Desliens' bears the date 1566; see pages 70-71.]

The Australian portion, or Jave-la-Grande, of the oldest one, given here
first, is taken from a large chart of the world, on a plane scale,
painted on vellum, 8ft. 2in. by 3ft. 10in., highly ornamented with
figures, etc., and with the names in French.

At the upper corner, on the left hand, is a shield of the arms of France,
with the collar of St. Michael; and on the right, another shield of
France and Dauphiny, quarterly. It was probably executed in the time of
Francis I. of France, for his son, the Dauphin, afterwards Henry II.;
hence, this chart has sometimes been called the "Dauphin Chart."*

[* Another of these planispheres, belonging to the same French School of
Cartography, was presented to Henry II. of France. About that time a
movement was set on foot for the colonisation of the Great Southern
Continent, or Jave-la-Grande. The promotors failed in their endeavours,
and one of them went to England with the hopes of better success; he also
failed in his efforts, and the great colonising scheme was abandoned.]

This chart formerly belonged to Edward Harley, Earl of Oxford and one of
the principal Lords of the Admiralty, after whose death it was taken away
by one of his servants. It. was subsequently purchased by Sir Joseph
Banks, Bart., and presented by him to the British Museum in 1790.

Copies of this and other maps of the same category, have been made for
the Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide Free Public Libraries, at considerable
expense. This was a wise step on the part of our governments, for the
strongest evidence of early discovery as yet brought to light is shown in
the draughting of these old charts of Australia.

Unfortunately, as I have said, they are all mere copies of copies, the
first of which were more or less altered in outline and corrupted in
nomenclature, from a prototype which has not yet been found.

But, if the internal evidence of these odd charts clearly shows the
original or originals to have been Portuguese or Spanish, one point of
the question will be settled, and the Portuguese and Spanish will
undoubtedly be entitled to the claim and honor of having discovered

As to the matter of date, that is of less importance, and can be fixed
approximately, for the discovery must have taken place at some period
between the arrival of the Portuguese and Spanish in these seas and the
draughting of the earliest known chart, that is between the years 1511
and 1536, a period of 25 years.*

[* When the Portuguese reached India and the East Indian Archipelago
(1511) they were the masters in those seas, and became the possessors of
many charts used by Javanese, Malay, Chinese, and Arabian sailors.
The great Albuquerque refers to a large chart of this description, which
was afterwards lost at sea, but of which copies had been made by the
pilot Rodriguez. It showed all the coasts and islands from China, the
Spice Islands, and Java, to the Cape of Good Hope and Brazil. It is
difficult to believe that the Javanese, Malays, Chinese, or Arabs had any
knowledge of Brazil in South America, although the Malays and Arabs had
rounded the Cape of Good Hope, coming from the east side, of course. I am
inclined to think that the term Brazil mentioned by Albuquerque refers to
Australia, which had been called _Brasilie Regio_ from an early date--a
date prior to the discovery of Brazil in the year 1500. See, on this
subject, my paper in the proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society of
Australasia under the heading "Is Australia the Baptismal Font of
Brazil?" Vol. VI., No. 1, Sydney, N.S.W.]

But, after all, until the very date of the expedition which resulted in
the first discovery can be ascertained, the question of nationality of
the first discoverers is a much more interesting one.

Having no other documentary evidence except these old charts, the first
conclusion drawn was that as they are all written in French, the French
were the discoverers in spite of the fact that no French claim had been

The late R. H. Major, the author of "Early Voyages to. Australia," having
thoroughly considered the possibility of a French claim, came to the
conclusion that such a claim was untenable. Being somewhat shaken,
however, in his first belief of a Portuguese discovery, he was led to
adopt a Provenal theory to explain certain words which on these old
Gallicized charts, were neither Portuguese nor French. The whole subject
was in this state of incertitude and confusion, when, a few years ago,
having occasion to examine minutely these old documents, I discovered on
the oldest of them a phrase in Portuguese, which, curiously enough, had
escaped the notice of all the learned critics who had made a special
study of this early specimen of cartography.

The phrase I had discovered, "_Anda ne barcha_," or "No boats go here,"
situated as it is in the Gulf of Carpentaria, had, in my mind, a very
great significance, since it not only proves the Portuguese origin of the
chart, but also the genuineness of the discovery made in that as it
showed that the discoverers were fully aware of the shallowness of the
water off this part of the coast of Australia.

It must be admitted however, that on the original chart the nautical
phrase "_Anda ne barcha_," may refer to the difficulty of navigating the
strait between Java and Bali, or the one between Bali and Lomboc.

When I say that this phrase proves the Portuguese origin of the chart, I
do not mean to convey the idea that I accepted it, there and then, as a
proof of Portuguese origin, but I rather took it as a clue, for the
meaning of those words had evidently not been understood by the copyist,
since he had left them in their original form, instead of translating
them into French, and had mistaken them for the names of two islands.

This clue led me to make a special study of every word on the chart that
had proved so interesting, the result being that I came to the conclusion
that the western coasts of Australia had been chartered by the
Portuguese, whereas the eastern coasts, which fell within the hemisphere
allotted to the Spaniards, had been discovered and charted by them.

If we take for granted--and I think we may--that these charts are
unquestionably of Portuguese and Spanish origin, the next point of
importance that calls for our attention relates to the peculiar
configuration, or, to be more precise, the strange distortion which all
these specimens have undergone. This distortion is so great that one
might fail to recognise Australia within the coast line set down, were it
not for the general fitness of the terms used as descriptive of this
coast line, terms which have been handed down to us in the course of the
geographical evolution, and some of which are recorded in the very maps
we use every day.

Moreover, we have the equally important fact that within the latitudes
and longitudes charted, Australia does actually hold its place in the
vast ocean around. See map of Australia and Jave-la-Grande compared,
given here.

We must make great allowance for the measurement of longitudes as
computed in the days when the first circumnavigators were called upon to
determine whether the Moluccas fell within the Spanish or the Portuguese
territory, for, after their return, the matter was as unsettled as ever.

Albeit, the errors of these charts are far more suggestive of deliberate
distortion than, of inaccurate charting.

In describing Ribero's chart, I made some remark about Spanish
distortions. I come now to the Portuguese ones, which refer to this

For instance, the Portuguese, who were the first to make discoveries in
these seas, must have been perfectly aware that the coasts they had
charted lay more to the east, and if they dragged them out of position
and placed them under Java as shown in these maps, it was in order to
secure to themselves the lion's share, for their line of demarcation, as
fixed by Pope Alexander, did not extend much beyond the east coast of

[* A contemporaneous Spanish pilot named Juan Gaetan, of whom we have
already heard in connection with the Spanish voyages on the north coast
of New Guinea [see pages 25, 26, 28], and who aboard Portuguese ships
navigated all the seas to the north of Australia, has put the following
remarks on record with reference to Portuguese charts.

He says: "I saw and knew all their charts. They were all cunningly
falsified, with longitudes and latitudes distorted, and land-features
drawn in at places and stretched out at others to suit their purposes,
etc., etc., and when they found out that I understood their little pranks
they made strenuous efforts to get me to enlist in their service, and
made me advantageous offers, which, however, I scorned to accept."--In

They could not have believed that Timor was situated to the east of the
peninsula, now known as York Peninsula, and clearly shown in these
charts, nor that there was not an open sea to the south of Java since the
first circumnavigators, returning to Spain from Timor, with the last ship
of Magellan's fleet, sailed through it. (See track of their ship on map
of Timor, p. 40.)

But the secret was so well kept, that seventy-eight years after
Magellan's voyage round the world, Java and Australia were still believed
to be one and the same continent by certain otherwise well-informed
navigators, as will be seen by Linschoten's "Discours of Voyages into ye
East and West Indies," published in London, in the year 1598, in which
the following description, from Portuguese sources, occurs:

"South, south-east, right over against the last point or corner of the
Isle of Sumatra, on the south, side of the equinoctial line, lyeth the
island called JAUA MAIOR, or Great Java, where there is a strait or
narrow passage, called the strait of Sunda, of a place so called, lying
not far from thence within the Isle of Java. The island beginneth under 7
degrees on the south side, and runneth east and by south 150 miles long;
but touching the breadth it is not found, because as yet it is not
discovered, nor by the inhabitants themselves well known."

"Some think it to be firme land* and parcel of the countrie called TERRA
INCOGNITA, which, being so, should reach from that place to the _Cape de
Bova Sperace_ [Cape of Good Hope]; but as [?] it is not certainly known,
and, therefore, it is accounted an island."

[* The term implies continental land]

The above passage [shows?] that the author was uncertain as to whether
Australia, which he calls the Great Java, was connected or not with
ANTARCTICA, which he terms TERRA INCOGNITA; and his hesitation may be
readily understood when we consider that some maps of the period
disconnected Java-la-Grande from the TERRE AUSTRALLE INCOGNEUE; whereas
others connected it with Kerguelen and Tierra del Fuego.


I shall say a few words now about the illuminations. They form a
conspicuous feature in these old maps, and lend a great charm to such
productions of a bygone age; it would be a useless task, however, to seek
in these quaint devices a strict pourtrayal of the scenes appertaining to
the countries they might be supposed to illustrate; to do so would be to
forget their chief purpose, the decorative. But, allowing for the liberty
usually granted to the artist, nay, often exacted by him, the scenes
depicted are not borrowed from the realms of "Idealism" to the extent
that has been supposed by certain commentators.

The kangaroo is not represented; no, nor the gum-tree either, perhaps!
But that clump of bamboos* on the top of a hill is not a volcano in full
eruption, as a learned critic once ventured to assert.

[* Bamboos are plentiful on the north-western coasts of Australia,
planted, no doubt, by Malay fishermen in search of trepang, who from time
immemorial frequented those shores.]

We see, on these charts, fairly correct presentments of that animal seen
for the first time by the Spaniards in the straits to which Magellan gave
his name, and described by the Italian narrator, Pigafetta, who
accompanied the first circumnavigators.

Pigafetta says:--
"This animal has the head and ears of a mule, the body of a camel, the
legs of a stag, and the tail of a horse, and like this animal it neighs."

The animal thus described by Pigafetta is the Guanaco, _Camelus
huanacus_, and it is not astonishing to find it represented on the
Australian continent, for we know* that this continent was supposed to be
connected with _Tierra del Fuego_ and was sometimes called _Magellanica_,
in consequence. In the chart that I am describing, Australia is called
Jave-la-Grande--La Grande Jave would have been the proper French
construction; but the term Jave-la-Grande is merely the translation of
Java Maior, the Portuguese for Marco Polo's Java Major.

[* See remark above.]

The great Venetian traveller, Marco Polo, described Java from hearsay as
being the largest island in the world, and the Portuguese finding this to
be incorrect, as far as their knowledge of Java proper was concerned, but
finding nevertheless, this "largest island in the world" to the
south-east of Java, in fact, approximately in the longitudes and
latitudes described by Polo; the Portuguese, I say, did the best thing
they could both for Marco Polo's sake and their own, when they marked it
on their charts where it was said to be, and with the name given to it by
Polo, for he calls it Java Major to distinguish it from Sumatra, which
island he named Java Minor.

The channel or river, marked between Java and Australia, is evidently a
concession due to the fact that a passage was known to exist. This
channel, which is left white in the chart I am describing, is painted
over in the specimen dated 1550 [see map pp. 68-69], as though it were
blocked, and two men are represented with pick and shovel as in the act
of cutting it open.

Curiously enough, in both maps, the upper silhouette of the landscape in
this part defines the real south shore of Java.

On the continental part, the Australian Alps, the range of hills on the
western and north-western coast, and the great sandy interior of
Australia, are also roughly sketched in. Was it all guess-work?


It will not be necessary, I think, to give an elaborate description of
the place-names that occur on this map; those who wish to know more about
them may consult my larger work on "The Discovery of Australia."

We need not dwell either on those that are inscribed along the northern
shores of Java, well-known to the Portuguese twenty years at least before
these maps were made.

The southern shores of Java are joined to Australia, or, at least, only
separated from it by a fictitious river named Rio Grande, the Great
River, which follows the sleek curve of the "pig's back" described by D.
do Couto, the Portuguese historian.

In the Portuguese sphere some of the more salient features of the coast
lines bear the following names:--

_Terre ennegade._ Ennegade has no possible meaning in French.

It is a corruption of Terra Anegada which means submerged land, or land
over which the high tides flow considerably. It refers to a long stretch
of shore at the entrance to King Sounds, where the tides cover immense
tracts of country, and which has, in consequence, been called Shoal Bay.

_Baye Bresille;_ Brazil Bay, corresponds with King Sound.

The islands on the western coast, known as Houtman's Abrolhos,* and those
near Sharks' Bay, are all charted with the reefs that surround them,
although they bear no names on this map.

[* _Abrolhos_ is a Portuguese word applied to reefs; literally, it means
"open your eyes."]

Lower down, there is a strange name, that has led to some stranger
mistakes; it is LAMA, or LAME DE SYLLA, written HAME DE SILLE on another
of these maps. It is a curious jumble that I have not been able to
decipher; it occurs close to the mouth of the Swan River of modern

Later French and Dutch map-makers took it for the name of an island in
that locality.

Now, in those days, navigators and geographers were constantly in search
of certain more or less fictitious islands, among which, the "Island of
Men" and the "Island of Women," had been sought for in vain.

Could this be one of the lost islands? The old-fashioned letter s,
resembling an f, made _Hame de sille_ look like _Hame de fille_, and a
French geographer jumped at the conclusion that the word was _fille_, and
that he had found the long lost island.

He called it accordingly _I. des Filles_,* Island of Girls. The Dutch
translated the name on their charts where a _Meisje Eylandt_ may be seen;
but, instead of the girls that they expected to see the island peopled
with, they found it overrun by beautiful creatures, it is true, but,
alas! of the small wallaby kind, peculiar to the outlying islands of
Western Australia.

[* See Vangondy's map of Australia (1756).]

It goes without saying that they did not know of the term _wallaby_, and
taking those pretty creatures for overgrown rats, they called the island
Rat Island or Rat's Nest, and Rottnest is the Dutch form thereof,
preserved to this day.

Let us now turn to the eastern shores of Australia, for we need not
trouble about the southern shores as they are connected with the
Antarctic continent.

We notice first, _Simbana_, one of the original names of the island of

You will remember that there are several islands left out in Ribero's map
[see pp. 28-29]. Now the principal one between Java and Timor is Sumbawa,
and, strangely enough, we find that island grafted on here, and thus
forming the northernmost part of York Peninsula, with Timor to the east
of it in its actual position with reference to Sumbawa and smaller
islands around, although out of place with reference to Australia. We
next come to _Coste Dangereuse_, Dangerous Coast. It is situated in the
locality of the Great Barrier Reef, not far from the spot where, nearly
three hundred years later, Lieutenant Cook, in the _Endeavour_, was
almost wrecked. The name speaks for itself; it appears along a coast
lined with reefs, clearly shown on this map. _Baye Perdue_, Lost Bay, a
broad bay with an island in mid-channel, the modern Broad Sound and Long
Island. This name suggests a double voyage, a bay that was once
discovered and could not be found again.*

[* Many years ago an old cannon, supposed to be of Spanish origin, was
dug out of the sand a little to the south of Broad Sound, and near Port
Curtis. It may be connected with this Lost Bay.]

_R. de beaucoup d'isles_; the letter R, in Spanish, meant either river or
coast. This appellation refers to the locality of the Burnett river,
where the coast is lined with numerous islands. The term may, therefore,
mean either "coast of many islands," or "river of many islands." _Coste
des Herbaiges_, Coast of Pastures; it has been suggested that this name
gave rise to the term Botany Bay, chosen by Sir Joseph Banks,* instead of
Stingeray Bay, given by Cook. The locality, however, corresponds to a
stretch of coast further north than Botany Bay.

[* It will be remembered that this chart once belonged to Sir Joseph
Banks. See above.]



This is a map of the same type as the one I have just described. It forms
part of another large manuscript planisphere, draughted and illuminated
by Pierre Desceliers, a priest of Argues near Hvres, and it bears in
bold characters an inscription to that effect with the date 1550.

At first sight the most, remarkable feature of this map is the display of
descriptive matter contained in cartouches spread here and there between
the illuminations. These, however, do not refer to Australia but are
descriptive of such countries as Java, Sumatra, Pegu, Malacca, Ceylon,
the Andaman Islands, etc.

The only illustrations which might be supposed to appertain to Australia
are those _not alluded to in the French text_, a fact which suggests that
the other, extraneous matter, has been interpolated.

The illustrations, not alluded to in the French text, may, therefore,
have belonged to the prototypic map, such are the representations of
trees, rough guniah-looking dwellings, guanacos, and those strange, huts
on the western coast, which may have been inspired by some freak of
nature as seen by Dampier on the same coast some hundred and thirty odd
years after these charts were painted. Dampier says: "There were several
things like haycocks standing in the Savannah, which at a distance we
thought were houses, looking just like the Hottentots' houses at the Cape
of Good Hope; but we found them to be so many rocks."

Dampier and his companions may have mistaken some anthills for rocks.
Pron the French explorer describes some huge dome-shaped ant-hills seen
on this coast, and Captain Pelsart, wrecked in 1629, also describes some
ant-hills seen by him and his companions when in search of water on this
same coast in latitude 22 degrees south.

In 1818, Allan Cunningham, when on the west coast of Australia, at the
Bay of Rest, took occasion to measure one of these gigantic ant-hills of
that coast. He found it to be eight feet in height, and twenty-six in

Pelsart's account runs thus: "On the 16th of June, in the morning, they
returned on shore in hopes of getting more water, but were disappointed;
and having no time to observe the country it gave them no great hopes of
better success, even if they had travelled further within land, which
appeared a thirsty, barren plain, covered with ant-hills, so high that
they looked afar off like the huts of negroes..."

Dampier in his second voyage to this coast in the year 1699, but more
than one-hundred miles further south, describes again some of these
evidently very remarkable features of the western coast of Australia. He
says: "Here are a great many rocks in the large savannah we were in,
which are five or six feet high and round at the top like a haycock, very
remarkable; some red and some white." But Flinders, when on this coast,
actually came across native huts similar to those depicted on P.
Desceliers' chart of Australia.



His is another planisphere, of the same school of map-makers.

I give it here in its entirety, in order to show how the Australian
portion stands, in all these maps, with reference to other countries.

It will be observed that, for accuracy, Australia compares favorably
with, for instance, North America, named on this map, La Nouvelle France.

Besides its beautiful execution there is nothing to call for special
notice unless it be that three Portuguese flags are shown as flying over
Australian shores, a sure sign of annexation. The map-maker's name,
_Nicolas Desliens_, date 1566, and Dieppe, the place where the map was
made, are marked on a scroll right across the fictitious portion of

In this short chapter, before leaving the subject of the old manuscript
maps of Australia, and devoting the remaining pages of my book to actual
voyages of discovery, I shall refer once more to the importance of the
Lusitano-Spanish planispheres of the Dieppese school of cartography*
because most of those documents, becoming the property of French
map-makers, were used in various endeavours which were made to induce
European sovereigns to colonize the Great South Land.

[*Most of these maps were made at Dieppe; all of them were made in the
north of France.]

In the preceding pages I have only described the most important of these
manuscript charts. The following is the list in chronological order of
all the specimens known to exist:--

1. The Dauphin Chart         1530-36
2. N. Valiard's (so-called)  1539-49
3. Jean Roze's               1542
4. The Henri II. (of France) 1546
5. P. Desceliers'            1550
6. G. Le Testu's             1555
7. Desliens'                 1566



With the hope of making fresh discoveries and in pursuance of their
object to establish a trade between the Spice Islands and their newly
acquired colonies on the western shores of America, the Spaniards
continued to send out expeditions whenever an opportunity offered.

Ever widening their sphere of action, they now looked forward to the
southern regions of the Pacific Ocean as the land of promise, the _El
Dorado_ of their dreams; Saavedra's _Isla de Oro_ and Retez's and Gaspar
Rico's discoveries were not to be forgotten either.

It is in those regions that the legends and traditions of the times
placed the islands from which King Solomon derived the gold and other
treasures that served for the decoration of the temple of Jerusalem.

These legends, founded partly on historical events, and partly coupled
with traditions handed down in the Royal Incarial families of Peru, seem
to have given a powerful stimulus to Spanish enterprise in the South
Pacific Ocean.

The hopes they gave rise to were, in addition, strengthened by the desire
to discover the Great Southern Continent in a more effectual way than had
hitherto been done: these prospects originated all the expeditions which,
leaving the shores of South America, followed one after another in the
same wake.

The Spaniards were now firmly established in Peru and it came to pass
that a certain Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa, a Spanish officer of unusual
erudition in maritime and other matters, having collected and translated
many historical documents, or _guipus_,* relating to the Incas, became
aware that one of them, their wisest and greatest monarch, named Tupac
Yupanqui, had made an extensive voyage by sea towards the setting sun,
which lasted over twelve months, bringing back much treasure from the
countries he had visited. During the course of this voyage Tupac had
discovered two large islands, named _Nina-Chumpi_ and _Hahua-Chumpi_, or
_Fire-Island_ and _Outer-Island_.

* The ancient Peruvians had a curious method of keeping tally of events.
They had no alphabet, and instead of writing they made use of strings of
various make, colour, and length, and, with the addition of knots, more
or less complicated, were able to place on record any important event.

Sarmiento believed that he had obtained valuable information from the
Incas and their _guipus_ relative to these islands, which were also
believed to be the outposts of a southern continent, and he thought that
he could fix their position approximately.

In consequence, in the year 1567, he made a proposal for the re-discovery
by the Spaniards of these distant lands. In one of his memorials to
Philip II, he represented that he knew of many islands in the South Sea
which were undiscovered by Europeans until his time, offering to
undertake an expedition for their re-discovery with the approval of the
Governor of Peru, who was then Lope Garcia de Castro.

Garcia de Castro willingly accepted Sarmiento's offer, and not only
helped him in every way that lay in his power, but also offered him the
sole command of the fleet. But, Sarmiento insisted that it should be
entrusted to Alvaro de Mendana, a young nephew of Garcia de Castro.

This was probably a mistake on the part of Sarmiento, and was, no doubt,
the cause of the failure of the expedition, and we may also attribute to
his refusal of the sole command, the fact that his name has hitherto
remained ignored not only in connection with this initiatory voyage, but
also in connection with the further voyages of Mendana, Queiroz and

Sarmiento, however, stipulated that he should have the conduct of the
discovery and navigation, and that no course should be altered without
his consent.

The two ships of the expedition sailed from Callao, the port of Lima, in
Peru, on the day of the feast of Santa Ysabel, the 19th of November,
1567, and Santa Ysabel became the patroness saint of the expedition.

Sarmiento intended to steer W.S.W. until he reached the tropic of
Capricorn,* and this direction was kept until the 28th of November.

[* Sarmiento, and after him Torres, both endeavoured to keep in the
latitude of the tropic of Capricorn. In the charts of the period a port
or bay was marked on the coast of Java-Major in that latitude. See "Baye
Perdue," in the Lusitano-Spanish charts.]

On that day the chief pilot, Hernando Gallego, altered the course without
Sarmiento's permission, and in defiance of the instructions, being
supported by Mendana in so doing.

So it happened that, notwithstanding Sarmiento's protests and constant
remonstrances, Gallego and Mendana, persisted in this more northerly
course for forty days, evidently with the intention of making for the
better known seas that surround the Caroline and Philippine Islands.

Sarmiento constantly urged that the islands and continent that he was in
search of were more to the south.

However, no land being sighted after many days, Mendana became alarmed
and requested Sarmiento to resume charge of the navigation.

He did so, and ordered the course to be shaped W.S.W., announcing at the
same time that land would be sighted on the next day, and this proved

An island was discovered which received the name of _Nombre-de-Jesus_. It
has been identified with Nukufetau, in the Ellice group.

They had been sixty-two days at sea and were sadly in want of a change of
diet. Seventeen days later, they sighted the small islands and rocks
which they called _Baixos de la Candelaria_, Candlemas Reefs; these have
been identified with Lord Howe Islands, lately ceded to England by

On the 7th of February, they reached at last a large island called Atoglu
by the natives. The Spaniards gave to it the name of the patroness saint
of the voyage, Santa Ysabel.

Natives came off in crescent-shaped canoes to meet them.

They found a bay on the northern coast, and having noticed the planet
Venus at 10 o'clock in the morning, they called this bay the _Baya de la
Estrella_, the Bay of the Star, a name which has been restored to it in
recent years.

They began at once to build a brigantine which had been taken out in
pieces; in fifty-four days it was put together with the help of fresh
timber obtained on the island.

Sarmiento then conducted a reconnoitering expedition inland, but met with
hostility from the natives.

In the meanwhile, Gallego and Ortega, the camp-master, examined the coast
on board the brigantine and discovered several other islands.*

[* Very little gold, if any, was found in the Solomon group.]

An expedition in search of the Great Southern Continent, or _Java Maior_,
was also projected with the brigantine, but soon abandoned, as they found
the little ship unsuitable for open sea work.

All the islands discovered were supposed to belong to the outlying
islands situated to the east of New Guinea, and the inference, as we
know, was not, far from the truth; it led, however, to a curious mistake,
which I shall explain when describing the earliest map of the Solomon
Islands, towards the end of next chapter.

In May, the expedition left _Santa Ysabel_, and after sighting many more
islands of the group, they cast anchor off the coast of a large island
which Gallego named _Guadalcanal_, after his own native place near

On the 19th and 22nd, Sarmiento and Mendana, accompanied by Ortega, made
excursions into the interior, ascending a high mountain and enjoying a
magnificent panorama. Afterwards a boat's crew was massacred by the
natives, and Sarmiento was obliged to make severe reprisals.

In August, the expedition removed to another island which was named _San
Christobal_, where they remained for forty days, refitting and taking in
supplies, and here the brigantine, which had done such good service in
exploring the shallow coasts, was abandoned.

Sarmiento now desired to return by way of the islands discovered by the
Inca Tupac Yupanqui, and submitted a report to that effect on September
the 4th, 1568.

But Mendana insisted upon steering east, and notwithstanding the
remonstrances of many, he shaped a course for New Spain.

On the 23rd of January, 1569, they reached the port of Santiago de
Colima, refitted at Realejo, and returned to Callao on September 2, after
an absence of 19 months.

During the voyage there had been many disagreements, and Mendana intended
to bring charges against Sarmiento when he arrived at Lima.

As little justice could be expected from the uncle in adjudicating on his
nephew's conduct, Sarmiento considered it to be the wisest course to
leave the ship at Realejo, and wait at Guatemala until Lope Garcia de
Castro should be relieved of his command.



Twenty-six years had elapsed since the Sarmiento-Mendana voyage, and now
Mendana was sent out again with instructions to found a colony at the
island of _San Christobal_, in the Solomon Group; and from thence to make
another attempt to discover the Great Southern Continent, the Java Maior,
that formed such a conspicuous feature on the maps of the period, and was
beginning to attract the attention of other countries besides Spain.

Mendana's fleet was composed of three large vessels and a frigate.

Pedro Fernandez de Queiroz was his captain and chief pilot; the other
officers were Lope de Vega, Felipe Corzo, and Alenzo de Leyva.

As it was intended to settle a colony, many took their wives with them,
and amongst these were: Da. Isabel de Barreto, Mendana's wife, and Da.
Mariana de Castro, the wife of Lope de Vega.

They set sail from Callao on the 9th of April, 1595, and, after
discovering the Marquesas, and a few smaller islands, they sighted land
on September the 7th, which Mendana believed, at first, to be the
Solomons, of which he was in quest.

They soon found out their mistake, and named the island _Santa Cruz_. To
the northward of this island was seen a most remarkable volcano in full
eruption.* The frigate was ordered to sail round it to search for Lope de
Vega's ship, which had parted company some time previously.

[* Tinacula Volcano, in eruption at the present day.]

They thought that she might have passed to the north, but the hopes of
seeing her again were very faint.

Mendana continued near the north coast of Santa Cruz, searching for a
port, and was rejoined there by the frigate, which returned without any
tidings of Lope de Vega and his ship.

At last a port was discovered where the ships anchored in smooth water,
close to the shore.

On the 21st of September, they found a better port, which Mendana named
_La Graciosa_, for it was very beautiful, larger and more commodious than
the one where they were first anchored. A river of moderate size and a
copious stream of very clear water gushing from beneath some rocks was
found in proximity to the anchorage. Here an attempt at colonisation was
made, but what with the hostility of the natives, sickness, and a
mutinous spirit, the young colony did not progress favorably. To make
matters worse, Mendana himself fell ill and died, and the grand scheme
which, under favourable circumstances, might have resulted in the
foundation of a Spanish Australian Empire, was, perforce, abandoned for
the while. The remnant of this disastrous expedition, having repaired to
the Philippine Islands, returned to New Spain in the year 1596.


The discovery of true Solomon Islands was soon forgotten and Mendana's
vague notions about them led historians and geographers astray as to
their position and size.*

[* In a map of the South Sea, _Mar del Zur_, published towards the year
1650, the Solomon Islands are represented as extending in a sweeping
curve, resembling their natural trend it is true, but the position is
from the locality of New Caledonia and New Zealand, right across the
Pacific Ocean to the south of Cape Horn. In that distance 40 islands are
represented, of an average size equal to the two large islands of New
Zealand, truly a magnificent mistake!]

In the few old maps that exist, it is difficult to determine precisely in
what measure the members of the expedition are responsible for the
charting; some of it is certainly the guesswork of geographers, based, it
must be acknowledged, on the best information then available, for we must
bear in mind that the accounts of Mendana's expedition were only known
from a few extracts, the actual narratives being lost at the time these
charts were draughted.

Now that some of those narratives have been found, it is easy to identify
the present day Solomon Islands with the group discovered by the
Spaniards; most of the latitudes in the old chart that I give here, agree
with those given by Herrera, the Spanish historian, which shows that if
they have been thrown out of position, as they are on some old charts, it
is through the fault of the map-makers.

The map given here is by Mazza, an Italian geographer of distinction; it
is the earliest one that I have been able to procure, the earliest known
to exist, the date being between 1583 and 1589.

I have marked on it the probable track of the ships; the first bay where
they anchored, and which was called _Baya de la Estrella_, is marked by
No. 1. The second anchorage, on the coast of Guadalcanal, marked No. 2,
was named _Puerto de la Cruz_; and the locality where the third sojourn
was made, and where the brigantine was abandoned, is marked by the No. 3.

The island thus marked, bears no name on the map; it is the southernmost
large island, however, and corresponds therefore with _San Christobal_,
where the third and last sojourn was made, and where, at a later period,
a colony was to have been founded.

The island bearing the name _Nombre de Jesus_, is misnamed, evidently as
the result of interference on the part of the cartographer, for,
according to the narrative, it lies at many days' sail from the first
land sighted in the Solomon Group, and has been identified, as I have
said before, with Nukufetau in the Ellice Group.

Other mistakes of the map-maker are, _Amacifre_ instead of _Arecifes_
reefs; and _Maiulata_ for _Malaita_. Malaita, however, is a mistake of
the Spaniards, for the natives call their island Mala and ita means
"here"; as one might say, "here is Mala."

The curious mistake alluded to on page 63 is this:

In most of the old maps that were made prior to the identification of
Sarmiento's and Mendana's discoveries, the Solomon Islands were placed
much too close to New Guinea, occupying, in fact, the position of New
Britain and New Ireland. This was owing to the belief on the part of the
Spaniards, that they had reached the region where their predecessors,
Saavedra, Retez and Gaspar Rico, had made their discoveries: so that, New
Britain, New Ireland, and all the other islands, of the Bismark
Archipelago were once believed to be the Solomon and Guadalcanal the
extreme east end of New Guinea.



We come now to the most important expedition that ever set out in search
of Australia. We have reached the year 1605, in the month of December, of
which Queiroz, this time the commander of another Spanish fleet, set sail
from the coast of Peru with the object of renewing the attempt at
settlement in the island of Santa Cruz, and from thence to search, for
the "continent towards the south," which he believed to be "spacious,
populous and fertile."

The intentions of navigators and the instructions given to them are
seldom thoroughly carried out. We shall see, in this case, that Queiroz
failed to reach Santa Cruz in the same way as Mendana had failed to reach
the Solomans; although they both sailed almost within sight of the
islands they were looking for.


According to Gonzales de Leza, the pilot of the expedition, the name of
the _Capitana_, or Queiroz's ship, was the _San Pedro y San Pablo_; the
_Almiranta_, named the _San Pedro_ was commanded by Luis Vaes de Torres;
the brigantine or Zabra, was named the _Tres Reyes_, and was commanded by
Pedro Bernal Cermeno.

With variable winds, the three ships that composed the fleet sailed
towards the west till the 26th of January, 1606, when, in the afternoon,
they sighted a small island. No anchorage could be found and it was
thought that it could not be inhabited, so they passed it. Continuing on
a westerly course three days later, they came in sight of another island
of larger dimensions; here, also, finding no convenient landing place,
they passed on.

The sky now became obscured, and, as they proceeded, rain set in,
followed by thunder and lightning; then a fearful tempest threatened
their destruction.

Presently, however, the storm abated, and through a rift in the clouds
they perceived land and made for it.

They found it to be an island about thirty leagues in circumference,
apparently an atoll, for it was described as having "a lagoon inside,"
and was surrounded by a coral reef. Here they wanted to get wood and
water, but finding no entrance or bay they had to abandon their attempt.

They continued their course, and the next day, 5th of February, they came
in sight of four other islands of the same description, and all equally

They passed them, keeping on a westerly and north westerly course,
passing several other islands, all unfavourable to their purpose.

At last being in 18 40' south, they passed the day with some rain, and
the next day, 10th of February, from the topmast head a sailor cried out,

It is strange how all the early navigators, Magellan, Sarmiento, Mendana,
Queiroz and many others, always managed to steer clear of the larger
islands that spread like a net across the South Pacific Ocean, and either
found an open sea, or hit upon some insignificant atoll.

From a careful study of the various narratives of this voyage it is
evident that Queiroz had just sailed an the outskirts of the Tuamotu or
Low Archipelago, and was now nearing Tahiti, which island however, he
never set foot on.*

[* Many writers have erroneously identified Queiroz's "_Conversion de San
Pablo_," Torqamada's "_Sagitaria_," with Tahiti. Sagitaria is Makatea or
Aurocra Island of the modern chart, and Conversion de San Pablo is Anaa,
or Chain Island, about 200 miles east of Tahiti, in the same latitude.]

At the announcement of "Land-a-head" their joy was great, for in several
places they saw columns of smoke arising, which was a clear sign of
inhabitants, whence they concluded that all their sufferings were at an

They bore down to the land on the northern side; but finding no harbour,
the _Capitana_ endeavoured to beat up against the wind and pass along the
island again, but in vain.

Queiroz then detached the smallest vessel, or brigantine, to look for a
port, while the two other vessels lay alongside of each other in sight of
the land.

The brigantine cast anchor near the coast, "in ten fathoms, stones and

The commander then gave orders to man the armed boats, and then made to
shore. As they approached the land the Spaniards saw about a hundred
natives inviting them, by signs of friendship, to land and go to them,
but it was not practicable to make good their landing, the waves broke
with such fury upon the rocks, that all their efforts proved ineffectual.

The enterprise was abandoned with the more regret, as the fleet began to
be in want of fresh water, and they had come to the sad conclusion that
they had nothing to do but to return, when a young sailor, full of fire
and courage, braving the danger, and generously devoting himself for the
honor of the expedition, and the preservation of his companions, stripped
off his clothes, threw himself into the sea, and swam to the rocks.

The natives, struck by this act of courage, went into the water to his
assistance, took him in their arms, embraced him affectionately, and
received him with all manners of caresses, which his gratitude abundantly

His example was soon imitated by several Spaniards, who passed the
breakers, and were received by the islanders with the same testimonies of
sensibility and affection. These brave savages were all armed: some
carried lances of twenty-five or thirty palms in length; some a sort of
sabres, and others stone-headed clubs; all these weapons were of wood.

These islanders were tall, with dark brown skins and bodies well
proportioned; their habitations were scattered irregularly on the
sea-shore, among palms and other trees which abounded in the island. On
the fruits of these, together with the produce of their fishing, the
inhabitants subsisted.

When night came on the Spaniards swam back to their boats; some natives
followed them, and were treated with those marks of friendship which
their generosity deserved: presents were also added; but they could not
ever be prevailed upon to go on board the brigantine; instead of that
they plunged into the water in order to return to shore.

During the night the vessels drifted considerably, and at eleven in the
morning had lost eight leagues, but were still within sight of land; they
were now in hopes of being able to get water there. They sent out the
boats to seek for a river; and as the appearance of the shore gave no
promise of anchorage, the vessels lay-to alongside of each other as

The waves broke upon the coast with such violence, that it was impossible
to attempt making the rock without risking the loss of boats and men; the
sailors, therefore, threw themselves into the water, and by dint of
industry and efforts, were enabled to raise their boats, and fix them on
some rocks which were dry at low tide.

Having thus secured their boats, the Spaniards visited two small
plantations of palms, cocoanut and other useful trees which were near the
place where they had landed; but all their endeavours to discover fresh
water were fruitless.

They came at length to a small opening where the soil was moist; here
they dug wells, but the water proved brackish. Their trouble was a little
recompensed by the ease with which they procured an ample provision of
cocoa and other nuts. With these they allayed their hunger and their
thirst at pleasure; and every man loaded himself with as many as he could
carry for his comrades who remained on board the ships.

To regain the place where they had landed they walked about half a
league, and in the passage had the water up to their knees, because the
sea, flowing full in, with great impetuosity, had risen above the rocks
surrounding the island and overflowed the shore.

Fortunately, when they least expected it, they discovered a passage
between the rocks; there they got into the boats and brought them so near
to land, that they could all embark with ease and return to their

The ships stood off all night; and the following day, the 12th of
February, they coasted along the island to the N.W. point., the latitude
of which they determined by an observation of the sun to be 17 40' S.
This island they called _Conversion de San Pablo_. It is Anaa, or Chain
Island, about 200 miles east of Tahiti, in the same latitude.

Departing from Conversion de San Pablo, and continuing his route in a N.
westerly direction, Queiroz discovered the islands following:--

_La Fugitiva_, two days and a half from Conversion de San Pablo. Seen to
the N.E., but, as the fleet was too much to leeward, they did not attempt
to touch there.

_La Isla del Peregrino_, a day's sail further. They left this also to
windward, and proceeded to the W.

On February the 21st, land was seen a-head; the brigantine was detached
to reconnoitre this new island more closely, and anchored on the coast in
a bad harbour, where the ships could not lie with safety.

_Isla de San Bernardo_, which was the name given to this island, was
found to be very flat, with a lagoon in its centre, and thirty miles in

The boats were sent out in hopes of getting water; but they searched in
vain for it, and only met with great quantities of cocoanuts. The fish,
which abounded on the coasts, and the birds, which were also very
numerous, suffered themselves to be caught by hand.

It was supposed to be inhabited; its latitude, by observation, was about
10 S. From this island they proceeded all night under very little sail,
because the wind blew fresh in their stern, and the great number of birds
that passed them proved that land was near.

On the 2nd of March, land was discovered to the W. It was an island six
leagues round, which offered but a bad anchorage. The boats landed with
difficulty, and one of them was actually overset in one of their visits
and the crew nearly drowned among the breakers.

This natural obstacle was probably not the most obstinate that existed
there; they found the island inhabited by a warlike people, that opposed
them in every enterprise.

In different skirmishes, several natives were killed, and some of the
Spaniards wounded, so that after some unsuccessful attempts to get water
they were obliged to abandon the place.

They speak particularly with enthusiasm of the beauty and studied dress
of the women, who, according to their accounts, surpassed the fairest
Spanish ladies, both in grace and beauty.

This island was called _Isla de la Gente Hermosa_, Island of the Handsome
People. I have been able to obtain a photograph of one of the descendants
of the native women so much admired by the Spaniards, and you may judge
for yourselves whether they were right in their appreciation.

The design of Queiroz was to reach Santa Cruz without delay, and with
this object in view he directed his course westward, for in these
latitudes they expected to come in sight of the lofty volcano, Tinacula,
which would enable them to identify Santa Cruz.

After many days' navigation, they discovered, from the mast-head of the
Capitana, a high and black-looking island, having the appearance of a
volcano and lying W.N.W. They could not reach it for several days; after
which they soon perceived that it was not Tivacula, as they had at first
thought, for they had to pass among several small islands in order to get
near it, and they well remembered that Tinacula stood alone in its awful
and solemn grandeur.

The small islands that surrounded the larger one that they had taken for
a volcano were most of them on the western side, but far enough from the
larger one to leave a channel capable of receiving ships. Torres, the
second in command, was sent to reconnoitre this island.

(I shall give his description in Chapter XII.)

In this harbour the fleet anchored in twenty-five fathoms. At no great
distance, and within the reefs that surrounded these islands, a smaller
island was observed, not more than five or six feet above the level of
the water. It was formed of stones and coral, and seemed to be the work
of man. They counted there seventy houses, which were covered with palm
leaves, and hung with mats within.

The islanders gave them to understand that it was a retreat for them, for
the sake of security and defence, when the inhabitants of the
neighbouring islands came to attack their possessions; and that they, in
their turn, invaded their neighbours in strong and large canoes, in which
they could with safety commit themselves to the open sea. They also
informed them that towards the south there were very extensive lands, and
one in particular called Mallicolo.*

[* This indication of lands to the south, named Mallicolo, may have meant
either Vanikoro (where La Perouse was wrecked after leaving Botany Bay),
or Mallicolo (sometimes called Malekula), to the south of Santo, in the
New Hebrides group.]

The Spaniards had, therefore, sufficient information that there were many
more islands in the neighbourhood of that on which they had landed, and
this knowledge led Queiroz to abandon, for the while, the idea of making
for Santa Cruz. The natives called their island TAUMACO; it abounded with
bananas, cocoanut trees and palms; it produced also sugar canes, and many
kinds of nutritious roots.

The fleet here obtained, without difficulty, refreshments, wood, and
water, of which it stood in great need. The Spaniards lived on good terms
with the natives, who were eager to procure them all the assistance that
their island afforded; nor was peace infringed till the very moment of
their departure.

Thinking that it would be of service in the remainder of the voyage, to
have some natives on board, who might act as guides or interpreters, the
Spaniards seized four, whom they carried on board by force. Their chief
was soon informed of it, and came to demand them in the most earnest
manner; but, seeing the need in which they would be of interpreters
should they land as they hoped on the Great Southern Continent, the
chief, whose name was Tomai, was informed that they could not be
returned, and war was instantly declared.

A fleet of canoes came out to attack the Spanish ships, which their fire
arms quickly dispersed, and would totally have destroyed, had not these
brave islanders, with all their courage, been sensible of their
inferiority. Thus the thunder of European artillery made good the right
of the Spaniards; but force by no means gives a sanction to base


Queiroz quitted this island of Taumaco on the 18th of April, and, _giving
up his project of settlement at Santa Cruz_, sailed towards the south in
search of the land of Mallicolo and other lands indicated by the chiefs
of Taumaco.

On the 21st, in the evening, they discovered land in the S.E. They
manoeuvred cautiously all night. They then sailed along the northern
shores of what proved to be a small island. The captain of the Almiranta,
Luis Vaez de Torres, went in a canoe to examine it.

He could not find an anchorage for the fleet; but he went near enough to
the land to converse with the natives, who offered him a present of nuts,
and a piece of stuff made of palm leaves woven together.

He learned from them that their island was caged TUCOPIA*; and they made
him understand by signs that, if he sailed southwards, he would meet with
extensive countries, where the inhabitants were fairer than those he had
yet seen. As this island afforded no shelter from the wind, they did not
remain there. In coasting along it, they perceived that it produced many
fruit trees, of which they saw several plantations. They say that "It
lies in latitude 12 S."

[* The first island arrived at by the Spaniards bearing a native name
preserved to this day, and that can, therefore, be positively identified,
with reference to this voyage.]


As we are coming now to islands which I have positively identified,* it
will be well to follow the itinerary on the maps given here.

[* See Portuguese, Spanish, and Victorian Geographical Societies'
Journals. 1903-1904.]

The fleet proceeded southwards, with variable winds, till the 25th of
April, when, at day-break, a very high land was seen in the latitude of
14 (Bougainville's "Pic de l'Etoile," the "Star Island" or Merlav, of
modern charts.) They named it San Marcos.

From San Marcos they went on a S.W. course, with men at the mast-head;
and at 10 in the forenoon, at a distance of 12 leagues to the S.E., a
land of many mountains and plains was sighted, the end of which could not
be seen throughout the day. Queiroz gave it the name of _Margaritana_. It
is the island of the New Hebrides group which Bougainville named Aurora.

About 20 leagues to the west, an island was seen that looked so beautiful
that they determined to go to it. About a third of the way they saw
another island, 3 leagues off. It was flat, with a hill that looked like
a rock in the distance. Two canoes under sail came from it, from which
they knew that it was inhabited.

On account of its thick woods and pleasant appearance, the name of
_Vergel_, or Flower-Garden, was given to it. There was little wind, and,
owing to the necessary caution in navigating among unknown islands, they
hove-to during the night.

To the north of Vergel island, which is the Merig Island of modern
charts, they saw another large island running N.E. and S.W., and the
peaks of its numerous mountains gave the captain a strong desire to go
and see it; but he gave it up, owing to other things that occurred. Its
latitude they found to be 13, and they named it _Las Lagrimas da San
Pedro_. The Tears of St. Peter.

To the N.W. another island was seen, with a circumference of 60 leagues.
It had two high and sloping hills, one at each end. The rest was flat and
of very pleasant appearance, alike from its shape and numerous trees. Its
latitude they found to be less than 14. They named it _Portales de

Upon nearing the island to the westward of San Marcos, they saw columns
of smoke arising in all directions, and at night many fires. In the
centre it was rather high, and thence its slopes extended in all
directions to the sea, so that its form was a massive round with only the
parts towards the south, broken with ravines.

There were many palm trees, plantains, verdure, abundant water, and the
land was thickly inhabited. The circumference was about 50 leagues,
though some gave it much more and thought that it would support about
200,000 inhabitants. Its latitude was 14 30'. Owing to its great beauty,
it was named _Virgen Maria_; it is the modern Gaua, in the Banks' group.

Four canoes with unarmed natives came to the Almiranta, and made signs to
offer to take him into port. Seeing that the Spaniards did not wish it,
they made presents of cocoanuts and other fruits. Having received a good
return, they went back to their island. As the disposition of the natives
seemed to be good, the captain sent a party in the launch and one boat,
to examine the coast and find a port. The party was under the command of
Pedro Lopez de Soto. They found to the S. and S.E. clean bottom at 20
fathoms or less, where the ships might have anchored if the weather to be
experienced had been known. They saw a great number of people on the
island, who came out to see and call to them. They followed the boat
without passing certain boundaries, and by this they supposed that there
were partitions of property between the people not on good terms.

Among them there were two distinct colours. While the natives were
looking at each other and talking by signs, a man rushed down from behind
some rocks. He was well made, of a clear mulatto colour, the hairs of his
beard and head brown and crisp, and rather long. He was robust and
vigorous. With a jump he got into the boat, and, according to the signs
he made, he appeared to ask: "Where do you come from? What do you want?
What do you seek?" Assuming that these were the questions asked, some of
the Spaniards said, "We come from the east, we are Christians, we seek
you, and we want you to be ours."

He showed himself to be so bold, that the Spaniards understood that he
wanted to make them believe that to him they were a small affair. He
presently was undeceived, for he was seized and brought to the ship,
where he came on board so fearlessly that the Spaniards had to confess
that he was no coward.

The captain embraced him, and asked about the land by signs, of which he
appeared to give extensive information. He pointed to several places on
the horizon, counted on his fingers several times, and ended by
pronouncing several words in Spanish, thereby showing that he had come in
contact with earlier Spanish navigators in those seas. The Spaniards say
that it was "very pleasant to hear him, to see how lively he was, how
vigorous and agreeable in his manner; having a bright look for all,
including those who importuned him with a desire for information."

The night having come on, the launch arrived, and the pilot of her told
Queiroz that they were bringing a native prisoner, secured by a hatchway
chain. Soon after, however, the prisoner broke his chain; and, taking
part of it and the padlock with him on one foot, he jumped overboard.

Queiroz heard this with great regret, fearing that the man had been
drowned. To make sure of their first prisoner, he ordered him to be given
his supper and to be put in the stocks, but on a bed where he could
sleep. He also ordered that the ships should go in search of the one that
had escaped.

Going in search at 10 at night, the look-out man heard a voice from the
water, and made out the place where the native, being tired out, was
struggling with death.

To the cries of the swimmer carne answer from the prisoner, in such
doleful tunes that it caused grief to all to see the one and hear the
other. The swimmer was got on board, to the joy of himself and the crew,
and to their surprise that he could have sustained such a weight on his
foot for four hours.

The padlock and chain were at once taken off, and he was given his
supper, with wine to drink, and then put in the stocks, that he might not
try it on again. There both remained all night, talking sadly and in
confusion. At dawn, the captain, pretending that he quarrelled with all
for putting them in the stocks, let them out. He then ordered the barber
to shave off their beards and hair, except one tuft on the side of their
heads. He also ordered their finger-nails and toe-nails to be cut with
scissors, the uses of which they admired. Queiroz caused them to be
dressed in silk of divers colours, gave them hats with plumes, tinsel,
and other ornaments, knives, and a mirror, into which they looked with

This done, the captain had them put into the boat, and told Sojo to take
them on shore, coasting along to the end of the island, to see what there
was beyond. The natives came, and the fear being passed, they sang their
happy and unhoped-for fate. Arrived at the beach, they were told to jump
out, which they could hardly believe.

Finally, they jumped overboard, where there were many natives; among them
a woman with a child in her arms, who received the two with great joy. It
appeared that she was the wife of the first native, and that he was a
chief, for all respected and obeyed his orders. They seemed to be
contented and gave each other many embraces, with gentle murmurings. The
chief, pointing with his finger, seemed to be saying that the Spaniards
were a good people. Many came to where the boat was, and they showed such
confidence, that when one of the Spaniards asked the mother for her baby,
she gave it. Seeing that it was passed from one to another, to be seen
and embraced, the natives were well pleased. In fine, a good
understanding was established.

The swimmer ran away, and presently came back with a pig on his
shoulders, which he offered to his new friends. The chief gave them
another, and a bunch of curious plantains, their shape being like that of
moderate-sized egg-plants without points, the pulp orange colour, sweet
and tender. The other natives emulously presented cocoanuts, sweet canes,
and other fruits, and water in joints of cane four _palmos_ long, and one
thick. Pointing to the ships, they seemed to say that they should anchor
there, that they might give them all they had in the island. The
Spaniards took their leave and went on to the point, where they saw the
coast of the island trending north, and the other of Belen at a distance
of 4 leagues to the N.W. Satisfied with their view, they returned to the

All the natives of this island were not equally well disposed towards the
Spaniards, for the boatswain's mate of the Almiranta was wounded in one
cheek by an arrow: certain natives being envious of the friendship of the
others, or being enraged because, when they called to the Spaniards, they
did not care to stop and speak with them, shot off arrows, and had an
answer from muskets. The wound of the boatswain's mate healed quickly,
and they knew thereby that the arrows were not poisoned. More mischief
would have been done if their friend the swimmer had not come running,
shouting, and making signs for the boat to keep away--"a great proof of
gratitude," says the Spanish narrator.

Towards the end of April, one Melchor de los Reyes was looking out at the
mast-head, when, at three in the afternoon, he saw at a distance of 12
leagues to the S.W. and S., more or less, an extensive land. For this,
and because the eye could not turn to a point that was not all land, the
day was the most joyful and the most celebrated day of the whole voyage.

They went towards the land, and next day found themselves near a coast
running to the west. The name of _Cardona_ * was given to this land in
memory of the Duke of Sesa, who had taken a deep interest in the voyage,
as well at Rome as at the Court of Spain, and because the captain felt
very grateful.

[* The name of the Duke of Sesa was Don Antonio de Cardona, Y Cordova. On
a visit to Rome, as a pilgrim, Queiroz was well received by Cardona, who
was the ambassador from Spain at that Court. The land which Queiroz,
named Cardona was Aoba Island of the modern chart.]

When they set out for the said land there was seen, far away to the S.E.,
a massive and very lofty chain of mountains, covered with thick masses of
white clouds, in the middle and on the heights, while the bases were

It seemed from aloft that the coasts of these two lands approached to
form one. The captain gave the name of _La Clementina_ to this range of
mountains. It seemed to be in about 17. (The lofty range that crowns
Pentecost Island).

Having come nearer to the land, an opening was seen in it, and, as it
appeared to be a port, Queiroz sent an officer in a boat, with soldiers
and rowers, to examine it. In the afternoon this officer returned,
reporting that the opening formed a narrow island 6 leagues long, running
N. and S., rather high, inhabited, and well wooded; and where it was
found to be sheltered to the E. and N.E., there was bottom at 30 fathoms,
and a strong current. The captain gave it the name of _San Raimundo_. (It
is the _Isla de Santiago_ of de Prado's chart.) See p. 34.

Coasting along this island to the W., there came out on the beach many
tawny men, very tall, with bows in their hands, calling loudly to the

As the new-comers would not approach, they threw a great bundle of
capon's feathers into the sea, intending with that, and by sending out
boys, to induce the Spaniards to come within shot of their arrows.

Then they shot off volleys from their bows which the Spaniards returned
with muskets. Further on they saw many natives of fine make and good
colour, and away to the S. and S.E. three and four ranges of very high
mountains (Malicolo and Ambrym), which seemed to join on to the other
ranges that had been seen to the S.E.

With such good news that the land was inhabited, they sailed onwards on a
western course; and at a distance of 6 leagues, on the 1st of May, 1606,
they entered a great bay, where they passed the night.

Next day, the captain sent the admiral* away in a boat to look for a

[* The Spanish term applied to the second in command.]

Two canoes came out to the ships with men in them, having their bows
ready. They stopped for an interval and rowed for another. They spoke
loudly, and looked at the newcomers and at the shore, showing themselves
to be troubled. Those in the launch fired off a piece to astonish them,
which it did, for they took to flight, rowing as hard as they could.

Torres, the admiral, returned in the afternoon very well satisfied, and
those who accompanied him were equally pleased, and could not hold back
the joyful news that they had found a good port; for this is what they
had hitherto failed to find, though they had sought for one with anxious
wishes to succeed. Without a port, the discovery, they knew, would be of
little importance.

Next day, being the 3rd of May, the three vessels anchored in the port
with great joy, giving many thanks to God. Natives were seen passing
along the beach.

The captain, with the boats, went to look at them, with the desire to
take some of them and send them back clothed and kindly treated, so that
in this and other ways friendship might be established. He did all he
could to induce them to get into the boats. They did the same to get the
Spaniards to land, and as the latter would not, the natives flung certain
fruits into the water, which the men in the boats collected, and with
which they returned to the ships.

The day after, the captain ordered the admiral to go on shore with a
party of soldiers, and try by all possible means to catch some natives,
so as to establish peace and friendship, based on the good work they
intended to do for them.

The party ran the boat high up on the beach, and quickly formed in a
squadron, for the natives were coming, and it was not known with what
object. Being near, they made signs and spoke, but were not understood.
The Spaniards called to them in return; then the natives drew a line on
the ground and seemed to say that the new-comers were not to pass beyond
it. They could not understand one another, and there seems to have been a
want of management and discipline. Natives were seen in the woods, and to
frighten them some muskets were fired into the air. A soldier who had
lost patience, or who had forgotten his orders, fired low and killed a
native. The others, with loud cries, fled. A Moor, who was the drummer in
the Spanish corps, cut off the head and one foot of the dead native, and
hung the body on the branch of a tree, without being seen to do it by
those on the beach.

It then happened that three native chiefs came to where the Spaniards
were, who, instead of showing them kindness, and taking them on board,
showed them the headless body of their comrade, pretending that this
cruelty was a means of making peace.

The chiefs, showing great sorrow, went back to where their people were,
and shortly afterwards sounded their instruments, that is, their war
drums, with great force and noise, which was heard on the hills among the

Then from many directions they began shooting arrows and darts, and
throwing stones, while the Spaniards fired on them, turning on one side
or the other.

Queiroz saw all this from the ship where he was, with great regret to
find peace turned into war. It appeared to him best to land more men in
the direction taken by a number of natives, who were trying to surround
the Spaniards. The supporting party got into such conflict with the enemy
that the captain was obliged to fire two pieces. The balls, tearing the
branches of the trees, passed over the natives; but, after this, and the
resistance made by the soldiers, the enemy retired.

At the same time, the natives who were on the beach moved forward,
brandishing their clubs, and with arrows fitted to their bows--and darts
poised to throw, menacing with loud shouts. Then a tall old native
advanced making a sound on a shell with great force. He seemed to be the
same chief who had spoken to the soldiers, and they understood him to say
that his people would defend their country against those who came to it
killing their inhabitants. Eight of the musketeers were in ambush, and
one of them, unfortunately, as he afterwards stated, killed this chief,
and presently the rest desisted.

Three or four raised their dead on their shoulders with great celerity,
and went inland, leaving the neighbouring villages deserted. The narrator
here remarks: "Such was the end of the peace that the captain hoped for
and sought for, the means of discovering the grandeur of the land, and
all was contained in it."

Shortly after Queiroz went on shore again and instituted an order of
knights of the Holy Ghost, with a badge, or insignia, in the shape of a
cross of a blue colour, to be worn on the breast.

Towards evening of the same day all three vessels displayed many lights,
and they sent off many rockets and fire-wheels. All the artillery was
fired off; and when the natives heard the noise and the echoes resounding
over hills and valleys, thy raised great shouts.

The Spaniards sounded drums, rang the bells, had music and dancing, and
had other forms of rejoicing, in which the men showed great pleasure...

Next morning it was not quite dawn when the camp-master and ministers,
taking with them an armed party in the two boats, went on shore. They
landed near the launch with four small pieces of artillery to be used in
a fort in case of necessity. Within, the monks arranged a clean and
well-ordered altar under a canopy. This was the first church, and was
named by the captain "Our Lady of Loreto."

Everything having been arranged as well as the tine would allow, it was
reported to the captain, who left the ship with the rest of the people.
All the three companies were drawn up in good order on the beach...

The Royal Ensign, Lucas de Queiroz (Queiroz's nephew), came forth with
the standard in his hands.

The banners, which were fluttering and brightening the whole scene,
received their tribute from discharges of muskets and arquebuses.
Presently, the captain came out and went down on his knees, saying: "To
God alone be the honour and glory." Then, putting his hand on the ground,
he kissed it, and said: "O Land sought for so long, intended to be found
by many, and so desired by me!" Then formal possession was taken under
six different headings, the last being: "Possession in the name of His
Majesty,"--which read as follows:--

"Finally, I take possession of this bay, named the Bay of St. Philip and
St. James, and of its port named Santa Cruz, and of the site on which is
to be founded the City of New Jerusalem, in latitude 15 10', and of all
the lands which I sighted and am going to sight, and of all this region
of the south as far as the Pole, which, from this time shall be called
AUSTRALIA DEL ESPIRITU SANTO, with all its dependencies and belongings;
and this for ever, and so long as right exists, in the name of the king,
Don Philip, third of that name, king of Spain, and of the eastern and
western Indies, my king and natural lord, whose is the cost and expense
of this fleet, and from whose will and power came its mission, with the
government, spiritual and temporal, of these lands and people, in whose
royal name are displayed these his three banners, and I hereby hoist the
royal standard."...

Then followed masses and various other ceremonies, including the creation
of a municipality and the elections of officers thereto.

After which Queiroz ordered Torres to take an armed party, and penetrate
further into the interior...They saw more and better farms and villages
than before, and at one village they found the natives much occupied with
their dances. When they saw the Spaniards approaching, they began a
flight to the mountains, leaving strewn about, as they fled, bows,
arrows, and darts. The people of the party found two roast pigs, and all
their other food, which they eat at their ease. They carried off twelve
live pigs, eight hens and chickens, and they saw a tree which astonished
them, for its trunk could not have been encircled by fifteen or twenty
men; so they returned to the ships. Queiroz, on the last day of Easter,
taking with him such an escort as seemed necessary, went to an adjacent
farm of the natives and sowed a quantity of maize, cotton, anions,
melons, pumpkins, beans, pulse, and other seeds of Spain; and returned to
the ships laden with many roots and fish caught on the beach. Next day
Queiroz sent the master of the camp, with thirty soldiers, to reconnoitre
a certain height, where they found a large and pleasant valley, with
villages. When the inhabitants saw them coming, many assembled together
in arms. They caught there three boys, the oldest being about seven years
of age, and twenty pigs. With these they began to retreat, and the
natives, with vigour and bravery, attacked their vanguard, centre and
rearguard, shooting many arrows. The chiefs came to the encounter, and by
their charges forced the Spaniards to lose the ground they were gaining.
Arrived at a certain pass, they found the rocks occupied by many natives,
who were animated by the desire to do them as much harm as possible. Here
was the hardest fight, their arrows and stones hurled down from the
heights causing great damage to the party.

When the captain heard the noise of the muskets and the shouting, he
ordered three guns to be fired off, to frighten the natives and encourage
his people, and the better to effect this at the port, those in the ships
and on the beach were sent to support the retreating party in great
haste. The forces having united, they came to the ships, saving the
spoils, and all well.

Shortly after, the master of the camp was sent to examine the mouth of
the river, which is in the middle of the bay, with the launch, a boat,
and a party of men. He tried the depth at the mouth, and found that there
was no bottom, with the length of an oar and his own arm. He went further
up in the beat, and the view of the river gave much pleasure to those who
were with him, as well for its size and the clearness of the water, as
for its gentle current and the beauty of the trees on its banks.

The launch passed further up, and they landed on the bank and went
inland. They found a small village of four streets, and an open space at
the most elevated part. All round there were many farms, surrounded by
palings. Two spies were posted, who warned the natives, and they all
fled. The Spaniards found in their houses several kinds of fish, roasted
and wrapped in plantain leaves, and a quantity of raw mussel in baskets,
as well as fruits and flowers hung on poles. Near, there was a burial
place. They also found a flute and certain small things worked out of
pieces of marble and jasper. As they heard drums and shells sounding, and
a great murmuring noise, understanding that it came from a large number
of people, they retreated, followed by the natives, who did not dare to
attack them. Finally, they got to the launch in peace, and returned to
the ships.

On many other occasions they went to fish and to seek for things very
necessary for the requirements of the ships, returning well content with
the excellence of the land. Encounters with the natives were not wanting,
and it is believed that some of the natives were killed by the Spaniards,
although the latter denied it, when suspected and accused of the deed.

After the celebration of the Festival of Corpus Christi, Queiroz
announced his intention of visiting the "lands to windward." At which
Torres asked, "in his name and those of the crew, that another day might
be allowed for the people to catch fish," and the historian says that "it
happened that they fished in a certain place whence they brought to the
ship a quantity of _paryos_, which are considered poisonous, like those
in Havana and other ports. As many as ate them were attacked by nausea,
vomiting, and feverish symptoms."*

[* The ill-effects of the poisonous fish of Santo.]


This bay, to which the captain gave the name of St. Philip and St.
James, because it was discovered on their day, is 1700 leagues from Lima,
from Acapulco 1300, from Manila in the Philippines 1100 leagues.

Its entrance is to the N.W., in 15 S., and the port is in 15 10' S. The
bay has a circuit of 20 leagues at the entrance 4 leagues across. The
variation of the compass is 7 N.E.

The land which forms, the bay runs directly N. on the E. side, with
sloping heights and peopled valleys well covered with trees. This side
ends at the mouth of the bay with a height rising to a peak, and the
coast runs E. and then S.E., but we could not see how it ends.

The other land to the W. runs nearly N.W., and to the point is 11 leagues
in length, consisting of a range of hills of moderate height, which the
sun bathes when it rises and where there are patches without trees,
covered with dried up grass.

Here are ravines and streams, some falling from the heights to the skirts
of the hills, where many palm groves and villages were seen. From the
point on this side the coast turns to the W.

The front of the bay, which is to the S., is 3 leagues long, and forms a
beach. In the middle there is a river which was judged to be the size of
the Guadalquivir at Seville. At its mouth the depth is 2 and more
fathoms; so that boats, and even frigates could enter. It received the
name of the 'Jordan.' On its right is seen the Southern Cross in the
heavens, which makes the spot noteworthy.

To the eastward, at the corner of this bay, there is another
moderate-sized river called 'Salvador,' into which the boats entered at
their pleasure to get water.

The waters of both rivers are sweet, pleasant, and fresh. The one is
distant from the other a league and a half, consisting of a beach of
black gravel, with small heavy stones, excellent for ballast for a ship.

Between the said two rivers is the port. The bottom is clean, consisting
of black sand, and here a great number of Ships would have room up to 40

It is not known whether there are worms.*

[* _Teredo Navalis_.]

As the beach is not bare nor driven up, and the herbs are green near the
water, it was assumed that it was not beaten by the seas; and as the
trees are straight and their branches unbroken, it was judged that there
were no great storms. The port was named 'Vera Cruz,' because we anchored
there on that day.

In the whole bay we did not see a bank, rock, or reef; but it is so deep
that there is no anchorage except at the above port. It is better to
approach near the river Salvador, and there is another moderate port
which is distant 2 leagues from this on the N. to S. coast.

All the said beach is bordered by a dense mass of great trees, with paths
leading from them to the shore. It seemed to serve as a wall, the better
to carry on defensive or offensive operations against other natives
coming to make war. All the rest is a level plain, with hills on either
side. Those on the W. side run southward, becoming more elevated and more
massive as their distances increase. As for the plain, we have not seen
where it ends. The earth is black, rich, and in large particles. It is
cleared of wild trees to make room for fruit trees, crops, and gardens
surrounded by railings. There are many houses scattered about, and
whenever a view could be obtained, many fires and columns of smoke were
discerned, witnesses of a large population.

The natives generally seen here are corpulent, not quite black nor
mulatto. Their hair is frizzled. They have good eyes. They cover their
parts with certain cloths they weave. They are clean, fond of festivities
and dancing to the sound of flute and drums made of a hollow piece of
wood. They use shells also for musical instruments, and in their dances
make great shouting at the advances, balances, and retreats. They were
not known to use the herb.*

[* Betel.]

Their arms are heavy wooden clubs, and bows of the same, arrows of reed
with wooden points, hardened in the fire, darts with pieces of bone

Their interments are covered. We saw some enclosed burial grounds with
oratories and carved figures, to which they make offerings. It is, to all
appearance, a courageous and sociable people, but without care for the
ills of their neighbours; for they saw some fighting with us without
coming to help them.

The houses are of wood, covered with palm-leaves, with two sloping sides
to the roof, and with a certain kind of outhouse, where they keep their
food. All their things are kept very clean.

They also have flower-pots with small trees of an unknown kind. The
leaves are very soft, and of a yellow-reddish colour.

The bread they use is mainly of roots, whose young shoots climb on poles,
which are put near them for that purpose.* The rind is grey, the pulp
murrey colour, yellow, or reddish; some much larger than others. There
are some a yard and a half in thickness, also two kinds; one almost
round, and the size of two fists, more or less. Their taste resembles the
potatoes of Peru. The inside of the other root is white, its form and
size that of a cob of maize when stripped. All these kinds have a pulp
without fibres, loose, soft, and pleasant to the taste. These roots are
bread made without trouble, there being nothing to do but to take them
out of the earth, and eat them, roast or boiled. They are very good
cooked in pots. Our people ate a great deal; and, being of a pleasant
taste and satisfying, they left off the ship's biscuit for them. These
roots last so long without getting bad, that on reaching Acapulco those
that were left were quite good.

[* The Kumara, or sweet potato, and yams.]

Their meat consists of a great quantity of tame pigs, some reddish,
others black, white, or speckled. We saw tusks 1 _palmos_ in length, and
a porker was killed weighing 200 lbs. The natives roast them on hearths,
wrapped up in plantain leaves. It is a clean way, which gives the meat a
good colour, and none of the substance is lost.

There are many fowls like those of Europe. They use capons. There are
many wild pigeons, doves, ducks, and birds like partridges, with very
fine plumage. One was found in a lasso, with which the natives catch
them. There are many swallows; we saw a macaw and flocks of paraquets;
and we heard, when on board at early dawn, a sweet harmony from thousands
of different birds, apparently buntings, blackbirds, nightingales, and
others. The mornings and afternoons were enjoyable from the pleasant
odours emitted from the trees and many kinds of flowers, together with
the sweet basil. A bee was also seen, and harvest flies were heard

The fish are skate, sole, pollack, red mullet, shad, eels, _pargos_,
sardines, and others; for which natives fish with a three-pronged dart,
with thread of a fibrous plant, with nets in a bow shape, and at night
with a light. Our people fished with hooks and with nets for the most
part. In swampy parts of the beach shrimps and mussels were seen.

Their fruits are large, and they have many cocoanuts, so that they were
not understood to put much store by them. But from these palms they make
wine, vinegar, honey, and whey to give to the sick. They eat the small
palms raw and cooked. The cocoanuts, when green, serve as _cardos_ and
for cream. Ripe, they are nourishment as food and drink by land and sea.

When old, they yield oil for lighting, and a curative balsam. The shells
are good for cups and bottles. The fibres furnish tow for caulking a
ship; and to make cables, ropes, and ordinary string, the best for an
arquebus. Of the leaves they make sails for their canoes, and fine mats
with which they cover their houses, built with trunks of the trees, which
are straight and high. From the wood they get planks, also lances and
other weapons, and many things for ordinary use, all very durable. From
the grease they get the _yalagala_, used instead of tar.

In fine, it is a tree without necessity for cultivation, and bearing all
the year round.

There are three kinds of plantains: one, the best I have seen, pleasant
to smell, tender and sweet.

There are many _Obos_, which is a fruit nearly the size and taste of a
peach, on whose leaves may be reared silkworms, as is done in other

There is a great abundance of a fruit which grows on tall trees, with
large serrated leaves. They are the size of ordinary melons, their shape
nearly round, the skin delicate, the surface crossed into four parts, the
pulp between yellow and white, with seven or eight pips. When ripe it is
very sweet, when green, it is eaten boiled or roasted. It is much eaten,
and is found wholesome. The natives use it as ordinary food. There are
two kinds of almonds: one with as much kernel as four nuts lengthways,
the other in the shape of a triangle; its kernel is larger than three
large ones of ours, and of an excellent taste.

There is a kind of nut, hard outside, and the inside in one piece without
a division, almost like a chestnut; the taste nearly the same as the nuts
of Europe.

Oranges grow without being planted. With some the rind is very thick,
with others delicate. The natives do not eat them. Some of our people
said there were lemons.

There are many, and very large, sweet canes; red and green, very long,
with jointed parts. Sugar might be made from them.

Many and large trees, bearing a kind of nut, grew on the forest-covered
slopes near the port. They brought these nuts on board as green as they
were on the branches. Their leaves are not all green on one side, and on
the other they turn to a yellowish grey. Their length is a _geme_,* more
or less, and in the widest part three fingers. The nut contains two
skins, between which grows what they call mace, like a small nut. Its
colour is orange. The nut is rather large, and there are those who say
that this is the best kind. The natives make no use of it, and our people
used to eat it green, and put it into the pots, and used the mace for

[* The space between the end of the thumb and the end of the forefinger,
both stretched out.]

On the beach a fruit was found like a pine apple. There were other
fruits, like figs, filberts, and _albaricoques_,* which were eaten.
Others were seen, but it was not known what fruits they were, nor what
others grew in that land. To give a. complete account of them and other
things, it is necessary to be a year in the country, and to travel over
much ground.

[* Apricots.]

As regards vegetables, I* only knew amaranth, purslane, and calabashes.

[* It is Belmonte, Queiroz's secretary, who is describing the bay and its
products.--G. C.]

The natives make from a black clay some very well-worked pots, large and
small, as well as pans and porringers in the shape of small boats.*

[* I have seen some of these in the Noumea Museum.-G.C.]

It was supposed that they made some beverage, because in the pots and in
cavities were found certain sour fruits.

It appeared to us that we saw there quarries of good marble*; I say good,
because several things were seen that were made of it and of jasper.
There were also seen ebony and large mother-o'-pearl shells; also some
moderate-sized looms. In one house a heap of heavy black stones was seen,
which afterwards proved to be metal from whence silver could be
extracted. Two of our people said they had seen the footprints of a large

[* Coral cliffs.]

The climate appeared to be very healthy, both from the rigour and size of
the natives, as because none of our men became ill all the time we were
there, nor felt any discomfort, nor tired from work. They had not to keep
from drinking while fasting, not at unusual times, nor when sweating, nor
from being wet with salt or fresh water, nor from eating whatever grew in
the country, nor from being out in the evening under the moon, nor the
sun, which was not very burning at noon, and at midnight we were glad of
a blanket. The land is shown to be healthy, from the natives living in
houses on terraces, and having so much wood, and because so many old
people were seen. We heard few claps of thunder, and had little rain. As
the river flowed with clear water, it was understood that the rains were

It is to be noted that we had not seen cactus nor sandy wastes, nor were
the trees thorny, while many of the wild trees yielded good fruit. It is
also to be noted that we did not see snow on the mountains, nor were
there any mosquitos or ants in the land, which are very harmful, both in
houses and fields.

There were no poisonous lizards either in the woods or the cultivated
ground, nor alligators in the rivers. Fish and flesh keep good for
salting during two or more days. The land is so pleasant, so covered with
trees; there are so many kinds of birds, that owing to this and other
good signs, the climate may be considered to be clement and that it
preserves its natural order. Of what happens in the mountains we cannot
speak until we have been there. As no very large canoes were seen, with
so large a population, and such fine trees, but only some small ones, and
the mountain ranges being so very high to W. and E., and to the S., and
the river Jordan being so large, with great trees torn up and brought
down at its mouth, we came to the conclusion that the land must be
extensive, and yielding abundantly; and that consequently the people were
indolent, and have no need to seek other lands.

I am able to say with good reason, that a land more delightful, healthy
and fertile; a site better supplied with quarries, timber, clay for
tiles, bricks for founding a great city on the sea, with a port and a
good river on a plain; with level lands near the hills, ridges, and
ravines; nor better adapted to raise plants and all that Europe and the
Indies produce, could not be found. No port could be found more
agreeable, nor better supplied with all necessaries, without any
drawbacks; nor with such advantages for dockyards in which to build
ships; nor forests more abundant in suitable timber good for buttock
timbers, houses, compass timbers, beams, planks, masts and yards. Nor is
there any other land that could sustain so many strangers so pleasantly,
if what has been written is well considered. Nor does any other land have
what this land has close by, at hand, and in sight of its port; for quite
near there are seven islands,* with coasts extending for 200 leagues,
apparently with the same advantages, and which have so many, and such
good signs, that they may be sought for and found without shoals or other
obstacles; while nearly half-way there are other known islands,** with
inhabitants and ports where anchorages may be found. I have never seen,
anywhere where I have been, nor have heard of such advantages...

[* Vanua Lava, Gaua, Aurora, Aoba, Pentecost, Ambryna, and Malekula.]

[** Gente hermosa, etc.]

As it was arranged that the ships should leave the port, understanding
that the sickness was not very bad, they made sail on the 28th of May. In
the afternoon the sick were so helpless that the captain ordered the
pilots to keep the ships within the mouth of the bay until the condition
of the people was seen next day. They were all in such a state that the
captain gave orders for the ships to return to port where, the wind being
fair, they were easily anchored. Then steps were taken to take care of
the sick, and they all got well in a short tune.

On the day after they anchored a number of natives were seen on the
beach, playing on their shells. To find out what it was about, the
captain ordered the master of the camp to go with a party of men in the
two boats to learn what they wanted. When the Spaniards were near them,
they vainly shot off their arrows to the sound of their instruments. From
the boats four musket-shots were fired in the air, and they returned to
the ships.

Soon afterwards the captain ordered them to return to the shore, taking
the three boys, that the natives might see them, and be assured that no
harm had been done to them, the fear of which was supposed to be the
cause of all this disturbance. When they arrived, the boys called to
their fathers, who, though they heard them, did not know their sons by
the voices or by sight, because they were dressed in silk. The boats came
nearer, that they might get a better view; and, when the boys were known,
two natives waded into the water up to their breasts, showing by this,
and by their joy during all the time the sweet discourse lasted, that
they were the fathers of the boys.

The natives were given to understand that the muskets were fired because
they fired the arrows. To this they answered that it was not them, but
others of a different tribe; and that, as they were friends, they should
be given the three boys. They said they would bring fowls, pigs, and
fruit, and present them. They were told by pointing to the sun, that they
were to return at noon. They went away, and the boats went back to the
ships. At the time arranged the natives sounded two shells, and the boats
went back with the three boys, whose fathers, when they saw and spoke to
them, did not show less joy than at the first interview. They gave the
Spaniards a pig, and asked for the boys. They said that they would bring
many on the next day, which, accordingly they did, sounding the shells.

The boats again went to the shore, taking a he- and a she-goat, to leave
there to breed; also taking the boys as a decoy to induce the natives to
come, so as to take them to the ships, and let them return. They found
two pigs on the beach; and, when they were delivered up, the Spaniards
gave the goats in exchange, which the natives looked at cautiously, with
much talking among themselves.

The fathers begged for their sons; and, because their demand was not
granted, they said they would bring more pigs, and that the Spaniards
were to come back for them when they gave the signal. In the afternoon
the same signal was made, and the boats returned to the shore. But they
only saw the goats tied up, and two natives near them, who said that they
would go to seek for others, as they did not want the goats. Thinking
that this looked bad, a careful observation was made, and many natives
were seen among the trees with bows and arrows. Understanding that this
was a plan for seizing some of the men, or for some other had object, the
muskets were fired off, and the natives hastily fled with loud shouts.

The Spaniards recovered the goats and returned to the ships.

Queiroz, seeing that the natives of that bay continued to be hostile,
owing to the bad treatment they had received, resolved to proceed south
to get a nearer view of the great and high chain of mountains in that
direction; desiring by the sight of them to reanimate all his companions;
because, as he said, "in the event of his death, he felt sure they would
continue the work with ardour until it was finished." He left the bay
with the three vessels on Thursday, the 8th of June, in the afternoon.
They met with contrary winds and decided to return to port. All night
they were beating on different tacks at the mouth of the bay. At dawn the
_Almiranta_ was 3 leagues to windward, and at three in the afternoon she
and the launch were near the port...The force of the wind was increasing,
and the night was near, owing to which the pilot* ordered that if they
could not reach the port, they were to anchor wherever it was possible.
The night came on very dark. The _Almiranta_ and the launch appeared to
have anchored.

[* Gonzalez de Leza.]

They saw the lanterns lighted, to give the _Capitana_ leading marks, as
she was also going to anchor. Soundings were taken, and they found 30
fathoms, not being an arquebus shot from the port. The wind came down in
a gust over the land. Sails were taken in, and the ship was only under a
fore course, falling off a little. The chief pilot, exaggerating very
much the importance of being unable to find bottom, together with the
darkness of the night, the strong wind, the numerous lights he saw
without being able to judge with certainty which were those of the two
ships, said to the captain that he was unable to reach the port.

The captain commended his zeal and vigilance. There was one who said, and
made it clearly to be understood, that more diligence might easily have
been shown to anchor or to remain without leaving the bay; and that, with
only the sprit sail braced up, she might have run for shelter under the
cape to windward. It was also said that they went to sleep. In the
morning the captain asked the pilot what was the position of the ship. He
replied that she was to leeward of the cape; and the captain told him to
make sail that she might not make leeway. The pilot answered that the sea
was too high and against them, and that the bows driving into the water
would cause her timbers to open, though he would do his best. The
narrator here remarks "that this was a great misfortune, owing to the
captain being disabled by illness on this and other occasions when the
pilots wasted time, obliging him to believe what they said, to take what
they gave, measured out as they pleased." Finally, during this and the
two following days, attempts were made to enter the bay. The other
vessels did not come out, the wind did not go down; while, owing to the
force of this wind the ship, having little sail on, and her head E.N.E.,
lost ground to such an extent that they found themselves 20 leagues to
leeward of the port, all looking at those high mountains with sorrow at
not being able to get near them.

The island of _Virgen Maria_ was so hidden by mist that they could never
get a sight of it. They saw the other island of _Belen_*, and passed near
another, 7 leagues long. It consisted of a very high hill, almost like
the first. It received the name of _Pilar de Zaragoza_. It is the
Ureparapara of modern charts. Many growing crops, palms, and other trees,
and columns of smoke were seen on it. It was about 30 leagues to the N.W.
of the bay; but there were no soundings and no port.

[* Vanua Lava, in the Banks group.]

They diligently sought its shelter, but were obliged to give it up owing
to the wind and current; and on the next day they found themselves at
sea, out of sight of land.

Queiroz made an attempt to reach Santa Cruz where, in case of separation,
the fleet was to rendezvous in Graciosa Bay. He failed to reach that
island and sailed for Acapulco, which he sighted on the 3rd of October,
1606, and thence overland he reached Mexico with a small escort on his
way back to Spain, where he arrived destitute.

On his return to Spain, Queiroz reported to the king the discovery of the
Australian continent. Thus it came to pass, in after years, that
Australia was represented as shown in the accompanying map, and not until
the French navigator Bougainville, and after him our immortal Cook,
re-discovered the New Hebrides, was the illusion concerning Queiroz's
discovery of Australia thoroughly dispelled.

In a work published in Paris, in 1756, the same year, therefore, as the
map by Vaugondy, given here, De Brosses, the author of a work on
Australian Discovery, describing New Holland, the name then given to
Australia, says:--

"On the eastern coast is the _Terre du St. Esprit_ (the Land of the Holy
Ghost), discovered by Queiroz."


The map given here was drafted by Don Diego de Prado, the cartographer of
Queiroz' fleet. When compared with a modern map (see pp. 97-114), it will
be seen how correct it is. The Spaniards approached their anchoring
ground from the north and the perspective elevations of the hilly country
is given as seen from the decks of their ships, a common practice in
those days, but one, which in this case, necessitated placing the south
on top; for purposes of comparison, it will be necessary, therefore, to
reverse the map, mentally or otherwise.

The original map, which is of a much larger size, bears an inscription in
Spanish (for want of space incomplete in my copy), referring to the
discovery, date of taking possession, latitude, etc. It draws attention
to the anchors marked in the bay and says that in those places the ships
cast anchor. It will be noticed that no less than nine of these
anchorages are marked, and that most of them are in the port of Vera
Cruz. The inscription says also that the _Capitana_ left them on the 11th
of June.

It has often been said that Queiroz's port of Vera Cruz is not to be
found in the big bay of St. Philip and St. James, that the water is too
shallow in the locality where the port was said to be. This objection,
however, may be overcome.

When amongst the islands of the group, a couple of years ago, a friend of
mine, a French geologist of note, informed me that he had found numerous
signs of upheaval in the corner of the bay, where, precisely, the port of
Vera Cruz is marked on D. Diego de Prado's chart. This, coupled with what
Queiroz says about "great trees torn up and brought down" by the rivers,
accounts, no doubt, for what appears to be incorrect in the Spanish chart
if compared with modern features.



I shall give here Torres' account from that portion of it that has come
to be intimately connected with Australian discovery.

As there was a misunderstanding, to say the least of it, between Queiroz,
the Portuguese, and his lieutenant Torres, the proud Spaniard, the second
in command during the voyage we have just read about, it will be just as
well to hear both sides of the question, and thus be able to form a more
correct opinion of what really happened on the occasion of the last of
Spain's great navigators' memorable voyage towards the Great South Land.

Torres, in a letter to the king of Spain says:

About sixty leagues before reaching Santa Cruz, we found a small island
of 6 leagues, very high, and all around it very good soundings; and other
small islands near it, under shelter of which the ships anchored.*

[* The island mentioned here was TAUMACO, which has been identified as
one of the large islands of the Duff group, not far from Santa Cruz.]

I went with the two boats and fifty men to reconnoitre the people of this
island; and at a distance of a musket shot from the island, we found a
town surrounded with a wall, and only one entrance without a gate.

Being near with the two boats, with an intention of investing them, as
they did not by signs choose peace, at length their chief came into the
water up to his neck, with a staff in his hand, and without fear came
directly to the boats; where he was very well received, and by signs
which we very well understood, he told me that his people were in great
terror of the muskets,* and, therefore, he entreated us not to land, and
said that they would bring water and wood if we gave them vessels. I told
him that it was necessary to remain five days on shore to refresh. Seeing
he could not do more with me he quieted his people, who were very uneasy
and turbulent, and so it happened that no hostility was committed on
either side.

[* Some of them had, no doubt, a lively remembrance of the effect of
Spanish fire arms, having been at Santa Cruz, eleven years before, when
Mendana's fleet anchored in Graciosa Bay.]

We went into the fort very safely; and, having halted, I made them give
up their arms, and made them bring from their houses their effects, which
were not of any value, and go with them to the island to other towns.

They thanked me very much; the chief always continued with me. They then
told me that TAUMACO was the name of their island.

All came to me to make peace, and the chiefs assisted me, making their
people get water and wood, and carry it on board the ship. In this we
spent six days.

The people of this island are of agreeable conversation, understanding us
very well, desirous of learning our language and to teach us theirs.

They are great cruisers; they have much beard; they are great archers and
hurlers of darts; the vessels in which they sail are large, and can go a
great way. They informed us of more than forty islands, great and small,
all peopled, naming them, and telling us they were at war with many of
them. They also gave us intelligence of Santa Cruz Island, and of what
happened when Mendana was there.

The people of this island are of ordinary stature. They have amongst them
people white and red, some in color like those of the Indies, others
woolly-headed, blacks and mulattoes. Slavery is in use amongst them.
Their food is yams, fish, cocoanuts, and they have pigs and fowls. The
name of the chief is Tomai.


We departed from Taumaco with four natives of the place, whom we took, at
which they were not much pleased; and as we here got wood and water,
there was no necessity for us to go to Santa Cruz Island; which is, in
this parallel* sixty leagues further on.

[* It is not exactly in the same parallel.]

So we sailed from hence, steering S.S.E. to 12 30' S. latitude, where we
found an island like that of Taumaco, and with the same kind of people,
named Tucopia. There is only one small anchoring place; and passing in
the offing, a small canoe with only two men came to me to make peace, and
presented me with some bark of a tree, which appeared like a very fine
handkerchief, four yards long and three palms wide; on this I parted from

From hence we steered south. We had a hard gale of wind from the north,
which obliged us to lie to for two days: at the end of that time it was
thought, as it was winter, that we could not exceed the latitude of 14
S., in which we were, though my opinion was always directly contrary,
thinking we should search for the islands named by the chiefs of Taumaco.

Wherefore, sailing from this place we steered west, and in one day's sail
we discovered a volcano, very high and large [Star, or Merlav Island],
above three leagues in circuit, full of trees, and of black people with
much beard.

To the westward, and in sight of this volcano, was an island not very
high, and pleasant in appearance. There are few anchoring places, and
those very close to the shore; it was very full of black people.

Here we caught two in some canoes, whom we clothed and gave presents to,
and the next day we put them ashore. In return for this they shot a
flight of arrows at a Spaniard, though in truth it was not in the same
port, but about a musket shot further on. They are, however, a people
that never miss an opportunity of doing mischief.

In sight of this island and around it are many islands, very high and
large, and to the southward one so large* that we stood for it, naming
the island where our man was wounded, _Santa, Maria_.

[* This "one so large." is _Espiritu Santo_; Torres, evidently, did not
share Queiroz's belief, but took it for what it was, an island. See for
corroboration what he says further on, 8 paragraphs below.]

Sailing thence to the southward towards the large island we discovered a
very large bay, well peopled, and very fertile in yams and fruits, pigs
and fowls.

They are all black people and naked. They fought with bows, darts and
clubs. They did not choose to have peace with us, though we frequently
spoke to them and made presents; and they never, with their good will,
let us set foot on shore.

This bay is very refreshing, and in it fall many and large rivers. It is
in 15 45' S., latitude and in circuit it is twenty-five leagues. We
named it the bay of _San Felipe_ and _Santiago_, and the land _del
Espiritu Santo_.

There we remained fifty days; we took possession in the Name of Your

From within this bay, and from the most sheltered part of it, the
_Capitana_ departed at one hour past midnight, without any notice given
to us, and without making any signal. This happened the 11th of June, and
although the next morning we went out to seek for them, and made all
proper efforts, it was not possible for us to find them, for they did not
sail on the proper course, nor with good intention.

So I was obliged to return to the bay, to see if by chance they had
returned thither. And on the same account we remained in this bay fifteen
days, at the end of which we took Your Majesty's orders,* and held a
consultation with the officers of the _Brigantine_.

[* The orders included instructions to sail as far as the 21st parallel;
also to _rendezvous_ at _Graciosa_ bay, which order Torres appears to
have disobeyed.]

It was determined that we should fulfil them, although contrary to the
inclination of many, I may say of the greater part; but my condition was
different from that of Captain Pedro Fernandez de Queiroz.*

[* Torres insinuates here that Queiroz was overruled by his crew.]


At length we sailed from this bay, in conformity to the order, although
with intention to sail round this island,* but the season and strong
currents would not allow of this, although I ran along a great part of
it. In what I saw there are very large mountains. It has many ports,
though soma of them are small. All of it is well watered with rivers.

[* Again, Torres states that Espiritu Santo is an Island, see 8
paragraphs previous.]

We had at this time nothing but bread and water. It was the depth of
winter, and I had sea, wind, and ill will of my crew against me. All this
did not prevent me from reaching the latitude mentioned (21 S.), which I
passed by one degree, and would have gone further if the weather had
permitted,* for the ship was good. It was proper to act in this manner,
for these are not voyages performed every day, nor could Your Majesty
otherwise be properly informed.

[* When Torres says, he "would have gone further," etc., he evidently
thought he was not far from the Australian Continent; a few days' sail,
three at the most, would have brought him to Cape Capricorne, on the
coast of Queensland, a little to the south of the "Lost Bay" that was
marked on some of the maps of the period.]

Going in the said latitude on a S.W. course, we had no signs of land that

From hence I stood back to the N.W. till 11 30' S. latitude; there we
fell in with the beginning of New Guinea, the coast of which runs W. by
N. and E. by S.

I could not weather the E. point, so I coasted along to the westward on
the south side.

I may here interrupt Torres' description in order to point out the
various discoveries which he made along the southern shores of New Guinea
during the course of his voyage to Manila in which he passed through the
straits that bear his name.

The recovery of some ancient manuscript charts and other documents throws
considerable light on this perilous and interesting voyage.*

[* The charts in question were pillaged from the Spanish archives during
the wars of Napoleon I., and taken to Paris. There, buried away and
uncatalogued, they were found, some years ago, by a friend of mine, who
caused them to be returned to their original owners and acquainted me
with their existence, thus enabling me to get copies of them which were
first published to the English speaking world in my work on "The
Discovery of Australia," in the year 1894.]

There lies at the eastern extremity of New Guinea a group of beautiful
islands supposed to have been first sighted in the year 1873 by the
leader of an English expedition, bent on discovery. Captain John Moresby,
of H.M.S. _Basilisk_, the leader in question, in the account of his
discoveries in New Guinea, published in 1876, says:

"I trust that the work done by H.M.S. _Basilisk_, in waters hitherto
untracted, on shores hitherto untrodden, and among races hitherto unknown
by Europeans will be held to call for some account."

Now, by comparing the Spanish map given here, with Moresby's it will be
seen how Moresby's work, on this point of the coast, had been forestalled
by Torres.

The features and place-names in the Spanish chart will reveal some of the
most important of Torres' discoveries at the south-east end of New
Guinea, where the Spanish navigator made his first stay in order to
refresh the crews of the _Almiranta_ and _Brigantine_.

From a description on this chart we learn that during five days and
nights the Spaniards stood in sight of those tantalizing verdant shores,
unable to effect a landing, threading their way through perilous reefs
and over dangerous shoals.

Then, at last, they rounded, no doubt, the cape which Torres called _Cabo
de tres hermanas_, or Cape of the Three Sisters, passed the next point
marked (A) on the map, near the east point of the compass, and came to
anchor in a little bay which was called _Puerto de San Francisco_.

It is situated near the south-east entrance to Rocky Pass, between
Basilisk and Hayter Islands, and formed, in all probability, during their
sojourn in these parts, the centre of their various excursions to the
islands and bays around.

Its name, San Francisco, gives us the date of Torres' landing (14th of
July, 1606), for it was customary in those days to name discoveries after
the saints of the calendar; but the feast of St. Bonaventure occurs also
on July the 14th, so that name was likewise made use of, and given to the
whole territory discovered.

Contrary to Torres', Moresby's approach, in the year 1873, was from the
N.E. where the mainland of New Guinea was supposed to extend beyond
Hayter, Basilisk and Moresby's Islands.

The English captain had already cut off Moresby's Island, left his good
ship _Basilisk_ at anchor in the strait thus discovered (Fortescue
Strait), and--the numerous reefs rendering navigation impossible for his
ship--taken to his boats, the galley and cutter.

Moresby and party then rounded the northern shores of what they thought
might prove to be the "beginning of New Guinea," when, suddenly, a bay
seemed to open towards the south.

Moresby entered it, and, by the merest chance, hit upon the identical
narrow passage which Torres, 267 years previously, had discovered from
the south side and named _Boca de la Batalla_, Mouth of the Battle;
having, no doubt, had an encounter there with the natives.

Moresby called that mouth Rocky Pass, and grew enthusiastic at the
discovery, and at having "separated another island from New Guinea."

He was anxious to find if Rocky Pass would afford a passage for his ship,
and spent the remainder of the day in examining it; but a rocky ledge,
which ran across, barred it to the ship, and made it dangerous even for
boats at the strength of the tide.

Moresby's experiences help to show the difficulties that the Spaniards
had to deal with, and also that Torres must have been compelled to leave
his two ships at anchor somewhere to the south of the _Baya de San
Milian_; San Francisco Bay, for instance; and use the only rowing boat he
had for his excursions.

In this he explored the bay formed by the horse-shoe-shape of Basilisk
Island, named it the _Baya de San Milian_ (modern Jenkins Bay), and
penetrated to the largest bay to be found among all the islands he had
discovered in this region--that is Milne Bay. He says: "We went a long
way out from _Cabo Fresco_ [modern Challis Head of Moresby's chart],
which is as far as we could go towards the east in a boat."

Other nautical remarks which I translate from the old Spanish text of the
chart are: "Towards the E. [N.E.] we did not see the end of the land, but
we could judge from the various small islands that the channels were
wide; towards the west there are no channels, only land and continuous
lofty ridges, '_Tierra alta y cerrada_' (evidently the Mount Owen Stanly
ranges in the distance). We steered in that direction, but had to give up
further progress after a while owing to the inadequacy of our boat."

These and other notes on the Spanish chart correspond exactly with what
Moresby says of Milne Bay; and the dimensions given to that bay by de
Prado, the cartographer of the expedition (40 leagues in circumference),
may be considered as a fairly correct estimate.

On the 18th of July, Torres and his party having concluded their running
survey of Basilisk Island, landed and took possession in the name of the
king of Spain, naming as I have said, the whole territory the TIERRA DE

A careful examination which I have made of a much distorted copy of a
general map of New Guinea, made by Torres' cartographer, shows that
Torres' _Tierra de san Buenaventura_ (Basilisk Island), is one of several
islands off the south-eastern extremity of New Guinea; and, by coupling
this fact with what Torres says of his inability to navigate the bay
(Milne Bay), and proceed east of Cabo Fresco (Challis Head), although he
noticed wide channels in that direction, we may infer that the reefs and
coral patches (not contrary winds as generally believed) compelled him to
seek the southwest passage to Manila.*

[* Torres evidently did not discover the passage, discovered by Moresby
and named by him China Strait, otherwise he might have been able to take
the northern course.]

This becomes still more evident when we consider that Moresby also was
unable to take his ship through to the northern shores.

From these regions Torres sailed to Orangerie Bay of modern charts, which
he discovered on the 10th of August, 1606, and named in consequence, THE

[* On the same day, one hundred years before, the Portuguese had
discovered Madagascar, which they called the Island of St. Lawrence.]

Here, another lengthy stay was made and an extensive survey, comprising
the laying out of a township, as may be seen by the accompanying map.

Then the little squadron went right up into the Gulf of Papua and down
again as far as 11 S. latitude.

Not, therefore, through Torres Strait, so called, did Torres pass, but
through Endeavour Strait, which has been named after Captain Cook's ship,
the _Endeavour_.

Sailing along the shores of the islands to the north of Australia,
between Cape York and Prince of Wales Island, Torres regained the coast
of New Guinea and put in at the bay of St. Peter of Arlanza (modern
Triton Bay), in order to refresh his crews.

There he took possession on the 18th of October, 1606, and, after a
lengthy sojourn, sailed away to the Philippine Islands.

He had discovered Australia without being aware of the fact, and had
completed the Spanish circumnavigation of New Guinea.

* * * * *


1492. Discovery of America, by C. Columbus. Marco Polo's. "Java-Major"
       appears on Martin Behaim's globe.

1497. Cape of Good Hope rounded by the Portuguese.

1502. Second Portuguese fleet sails for India.

1503. Third Portuguese fleet sails for India.

1504. Three Great Portuguese fleets dispatched to. India.

1511. The Spice Islands discovered by the Portuguese.

1519-22. Magellan's Expedition Round the World, sent out, from Spain.
         Sebastian del Cano, in the Victoria, puts in at Timor.

1525. Garcia Jofre de Loaysa, with Sabastian del Cano, sets sail for the
      Spice Islands, via the Straits of Magellan.

1527. Fernand Cortez sends his kinsman, Saavedra, in search of Loaysa's

1529. Saavedra discovers the Northern Shores of New Guinea.

1530-36. Copies of early Portuguese charts of Australia made in France.

1536. Remnant of Saavedra's Expedition reaches Lisbon.
      Grijalva's Expedition sent out by F. Cortez, to the Spice Islands.

1539. A few survivors of Grijalva's Expedition reach the Spice Islands.

1542. Ruy Lopes de Villalobos sets sail for the Philippines.

1545. Ortiz de Retez and Gaspar Rico make discoveries on Northern Shores
      of New Guinea.

1567. Samiento and Mendana sail from Peru in search of Western Islands,
      and Continental Land; they discover the Solomon Islands.

1569. Sarmiento and Mendana return to America.

1595. Mendana and Pedro Fernandez de Queiroz set sail from Peru in search
      of the Solomon Islands; they fail in their attempt, and reach the
      island of Santa Cruz, to the West of the Solomons, where they
      attempt a settlement.

1596. The remnant of Mendana's expedition reach New Spain.

1605-6. De Queiroz sets sail from Peru, with the object of renewing the
        attempt at settlement in the island of Santa Cruz, and from
        thence to search for the Great Australian Continent. He fails to
        reach Santa Cruz, and puts in at the New Hebrides.

1606. Torres sails towards Australia from the New Hebrides,
      passes through the straits that bear his name, and discovers
      Australia, without, apparently, being aware of the fact.


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