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The continent revealed
Title : The continent revealed The continent revealed
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Creator : Freycinet, Louis de, 1779-1842
Source : Carte generale de la Nouvelle Hollande [cartographic material]
Place Of Creation : Paris
Publisher : Imprime par Langlois
Date of creation : 1811
Additional Creator : Tardieu, P. F. (Pierre Francois), 1757-1822 Giraldon Lale Freycinet, Louis de, 1779-1842. Peron, Francois, 1775-1810.
Format : Map
Dimensions : 46.4 x 71.5 cm
Contributor : State Library of South Australia
Catalogue record
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Description :

Chart of Australia published in 1811 as part of Francois Peron's publication on Baudin's voyage. The chart, drawn by Louis de Freycinet, commander of the Casuarina, depicts Baudin's discoveries in Australian waters. There is no acknowledgement on the chart of Flinders' prior discoveries, even though the Dutch discoveries of the west and southern coastline of Australia are acknowledged. Note the vignette, in the bottom left hand corner of the map, showing the three ships of the French expedition.

This is the first map showing the entire continent of Australia and Tasmania, published in Voyage de decouvertes aux terres australes. Due to the detention of Matthew Flinders on Ile de France (Mauritius) by the French governor General DeCaen for over six years, Flinders was unable to have his chart of the continent published despite having made the first circumnavigation of the continent in 1802-3. He finally gained his freedom, leaving Mauritius in June 1810 and arrived back in England in October of that year. His account of the expedition A voyage to Terra Australis, with Atlas, was published on 18 July 1814, and he died the following day.

The French had taken the opportunity with their earlier publication to ensure that their names for portions of the Australian coast were shown on the map: notably Terre Napoleon for south eastern Australia, and Golfe Bonaparte and Golfe Josephine and Ile Decres in South Australia, thereby denying Flinders' prior discovery of this portion of the South Australian coastline. The French had been politically motivated in this, and following an outcry from England, and with a change of regime, in 1824 published a revised map which acknowledged Flinders' discoveries.

The vignette shows the two French ships Le Geographe and Le Naturaliste which had left France in 1800, together with the 30 ton schooner Casuarina which Baudin had purchased in Sydney in 1802 and which was used for inshore surveying, particularly on the southern coast.

Related names :

Flinders, Matthew, 1774-1814

Baudin, Nicolas, 1754-1803

Peron, Francois, 1775-1810

Coverage year : 1803
Place : Australia
Further reading :

Ingleton, Geoffrey C. Matthew Flinders, navigator and chartmaker Guildford, Surrey: Genesis Publications in association with Hedley Australia, 1986

Brown, Anthony Ill-starred captains: Flinders and Baudin Hindmarsh, S. Aust.: Crawford House Publishing, 2000

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

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

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