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Baudin's activities before the meeting
Title : Baudin's activities before the meeting Baudin's activities before the meeting
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Creator : Flinders, Matthew, 1774-1814
Source : A voyage to Terra Australis ... p. 189
Place Of Creation : Adelaide
Publisher : Libraries Board of South Australia,
Date of creation : 1966
Format : Book
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Nicolas Baudin tells Matthew Flinders of his explorations in Tasmania and Bass Strait prior to their meeting. Flinders boarded Baudin's ship Le G ©ographe on 8 April, accompanied by his botanist Robert Brown, who spoke French. He requested from Baudin the passport he had been issued by the British government which provided Le G ©ographe and its companion Le Naturaliste safe passage as ships of science and discovery. Flinders also offered his passport from the French government but Baudin ignored it. He told Flinders of his expedition's work in Tasmania and his explorations along the southern coast from Western Port to the current place of meeting.

He also mentioned that one of his ship's boats with its crew had been lost, and he had also become separated from his companion ship Le Naturaliste, during a storm. Baudin was somewhat critical of George Bass's map of Bass Strait until Flinders explained that his friend Bass had charted the coast from an open boat, which was noted on the chart. Flinders promised to return the next day with more charts for Baudin.

When he reached Port Jackson (Sydney) in May, Baudin learned that his ship's boat and its crew had been rescued and brought safely to the settlement. Le Naturaliste arrived safely in port soon after Baudin. The French expedition under Nicolas Baudin had set out to explore and chart the coastline of the 'unknown southern land', and make scientific observations. They were also looking for new land and trade opportunities. Le Geographe neared Cape Leeuwin on 27 May 1801, but then following instructions given in France, proceeded up the western coast to the north, reaching Timor in August. Le Naturaliste was separated from Le Geographe and travelled independently to Timor, charting the western coast in more detail. After a sojourn in Timor, the ships sailed south to Van Diemen's Land [Tasmania] by January 1802. Baudin explored the island extensively, and after surveying D'Entrecasteaux Channel, reached the mainland southern coast which he explored in a westward direction from Wilson's Promontory. The detailed surveys undertaken along the western coast of Australia and in Van Diemen's Land delayed Baudin's arrival on the 'unknown coast' where Flinders had already arrived from the west.

Winter was spent at Port Jackson, and then Baudin returned to the southern coast for a more thorough survey. Le Naturaliste was sent back to France with its scientific collections, and was replaced with Le Casuarina. In January 1803 Baudin circumnavigated Ile Borda [named Ile Decres by Peron; present day Kangaroo Island], the first European to do so. While Le Geographe anchored at Nepean Bay, Freycinet and the geographer Boullanger explored the two gulfs in Le Casuarina. Near the end of February Le Geographe and Le Casuarina rendezvoused at King George Sound, and then explored the west and north-west coasts of 'New Holland', before heading home.

Related names :

Flinders, Matthew, 1774-1814

Baudin, Nicolas, 1754-1803

Bass, George, 1771-1803

Brown, Robert, 1773-1858

Coverage year : 1802
Place : Encounter Bay
Further reading :

Cooper, H. M. French exploration in South Australia : with special reference to Encounter Bay, Kangaroo Island, the two gulfs and Murat Bay 1802-1803 [Adelaide: the author, 1952] (printed by MacDougalls Pty Ltd)

Baudin, Nicolas, The journal of post Captain Nicolas Baudin, Commander-in-Chief of the corvettes Geographe and Naturaliste, ... Adelaide: Libraries Board of South Australia, 1974

Horner, F. B. The French reconnaissance: Baudin in Australia 1801-1803 Carlton, Vic.: Melbourne University Press, 1987

Fornasiero, F. J. Encountering Terra Australis: the Australian voyages of Nicolas Baudin and Matthew Flinders Kent Town, South Australia: Wakefield Press, 2004

Estensen, Miriam The life of George Bass: surgeon and sailor of the enlightenment Crows Nest, N.S.W.: Allen & Unwin, 2005

Internet links :
Exhibitions and events :

State Library of South Australia: Mortlock Wing. Taking it to the edge August 2004-



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