James Cook

James Cook

Overview
Captain
Captain (Royal Navy)
Captain is a senior officer rank of the Royal Navy. It ranks above Commander and below Commodore and has a NATO ranking code of OF-5. The rank is equivalent to a Colonel in the British Army or Royal Marines and to a Group Captain in the Royal Air Force. The rank of Group Captain is based on the...

 James Cook, FRS
Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

, RN
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

 (7 November 1728Old style date
Old Style and New Style dates
Old Style and New Style are used in English language historical studies either to indicate that the start of the Julian year has been adjusted to start on 1 January even though documents written at the time use a different start of year ; or to indicate that a date conforms to the Julian...

: 27 October
– 14 February 1779) was a British explorer, navigator and cartographer who ultimately rose to the rank of captain in the Royal Navy. Cook made detailed maps of Newfoundland prior to making three voyages to the Pacific Ocean, during which he achieved the first European contact with the eastern coastline of Australia and the Hawaiian Islands
Hawaiian Islands
The Hawaiian Islands are an archipelago of eight major islands, several atolls, numerous smaller islets, and undersea seamounts in the North Pacific Ocean, extending some 1,500 miles from the island of Hawaii in the south to northernmost Kure Atoll...

, as well as the first recorded circumnavigation
Circumnavigation
Circumnavigation – literally, "navigation of a circumference" – refers to travelling all the way around an island, a continent, or the entire planet Earth.- Global circumnavigation :...

 of New Zealand.

Cook joined the British merchant navy
Merchant Navy
The Merchant Navy is the maritime register of the United Kingdom, and describes the seagoing commercial interests of UK-registered ships and their crews. Merchant Navy vessels fly the Red Ensign and are regulated by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency...

  as a teenager and joined the Royal Navy in 1755.
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Captain
Captain (Royal Navy)
Captain is a senior officer rank of the Royal Navy. It ranks above Commander and below Commodore and has a NATO ranking code of OF-5. The rank is equivalent to a Colonel in the British Army or Royal Marines and to a Group Captain in the Royal Air Force. The rank of Group Captain is based on the...

 James Cook, FRS
Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

, RN
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

 (7 November 1728Old style date
Old Style and New Style dates
Old Style and New Style are used in English language historical studies either to indicate that the start of the Julian year has been adjusted to start on 1 January even though documents written at the time use a different start of year ; or to indicate that a date conforms to the Julian...

: 27 October
– 14 February 1779) was a British explorer, navigator and cartographer who ultimately rose to the rank of captain in the Royal Navy. Cook made detailed maps of Newfoundland prior to making three voyages to the Pacific Ocean, during which he achieved the first European contact with the eastern coastline of Australia and the Hawaiian Islands
Hawaiian Islands
The Hawaiian Islands are an archipelago of eight major islands, several atolls, numerous smaller islets, and undersea seamounts in the North Pacific Ocean, extending some 1,500 miles from the island of Hawaii in the south to northernmost Kure Atoll...

, as well as the first recorded circumnavigation
Circumnavigation
Circumnavigation – literally, "navigation of a circumference" – refers to travelling all the way around an island, a continent, or the entire planet Earth.- Global circumnavigation :...

 of New Zealand.

Cook joined the British merchant navy
Merchant Navy
The Merchant Navy is the maritime register of the United Kingdom, and describes the seagoing commercial interests of UK-registered ships and their crews. Merchant Navy vessels fly the Red Ensign and are regulated by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency...

  as a teenager and joined the Royal Navy in 1755. He saw action in the Seven Years' War
Seven Years' War
The Seven Years' War was a global military war between 1756 and 1763, involving most of the great powers of the time and affecting Europe, North America, Central America, the West African coast, India, and the Philippines...

, and subsequently surveyed and mapped much of the entrance to the Saint Lawrence River
Saint Lawrence River
The Saint Lawrence is a large river flowing approximately from southwest to northeast in the middle latitudes of North America, connecting the Great Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean. It is the primary drainage conveyor of the Great Lakes Basin...

 during the siege of Quebec
Quebec
Quebec or is a province in east-central Canada. It is the only Canadian province with a predominantly French-speaking population and the only one whose sole official language is French at the provincial level....

. This helped bring Cook to the attention of the Admiralty
Admiralty
The Admiralty was formerly the authority in the Kingdom of England, and later in the United Kingdom, responsible for the command of the Royal Navy...

 and Royal Society
Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

. This notice came at a crucial moment in both Cook's career and the direction of British overseas exploration, and led to his commission in 1766 as commander of HM Bark Endeavour
HMS Endeavour
HMS Endeavour may refer to one of the following ships:In the Royal Navy:, a 36-gun ship purchased in 1652 and sold in 1656, a 4-gun bomb vessel purchased in 1694 and sold in 1696, a fire ship purchased in 1694 and sold in 1696, a storeship hoy purchased in 1694 and sold in 1705, a storeship...

 for the first of three Pacific voyages.

In three voyages Cook sailed thousands of miles across largely uncharted areas of the globe. He mapped lands from New Zealand to Hawaii in the Pacific Ocean in greater detail and on a scale not previously achieved. As he progressed on his voyages of discovery he surveyed and named features, and recorded islands and coastlines on European maps for the first time. He displayed a combination of seamanship
Seamanship
Seamanship is the art of operating a ship or boat.It involves a knowledge of a variety of topics and development of specialised skills including: navigation and international maritime law; weather, meteorology and forecasting; watchstanding; ship-handling and small boat handling; operation of deck...

, superior surveying and cartographic skills, physical courage and an ability to lead men in adverse conditions.

Cook was killed in Hawaii in a fight with Hawaiians
Native Hawaiians
Native Hawaiians refers to the indigenous Polynesian people of the Hawaiian Islands or their descendants. Native Hawaiians trace their ancestry back to the original Polynesian settlers of Hawaii.According to the U.S...

 during his third exploratory voyage in the Pacific in 1779. He left a legacy of scientific and geographical knowledge which was to influence his successors well into the 20th century and numerous memorials worldwide have been dedicated to him. However, his role in opening areas of the Pacific to colonisation
Colonisation
Colonization occurs whenever any one or more species populate an area. The term, which is derived from the Latin colere, "to inhabit, cultivate, frequent, practice, tend, guard, respect", originally related to humans. However, 19th century biogeographers dominated the term to describe the...

 and its subsequent effects on indigenous peoples have been the subject of both political and scholarly debate.

Early life and family


Cook was born in the village of Marton
Marton, Middlesbrough
Marton — officially Marton-in-Cleveland — was a village in the North Riding of Yorkshire, which is now within the town boundaries of Middlesbrough, in the borough of Middlesbrough and the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire, England. Originally, the parish of Marton extended down to the River...

 in Yorkshire
Yorkshire
Yorkshire is a historic county of northern England and the largest in the United Kingdom. Because of its great size in comparison to other English counties, functions have been increasingly undertaken over time by its subdivisions, which have also been subject to periodic reform...

, now a suburb of Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough is a large town situated on the south bank of the River Tees in north east England, that sits within the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire...

. He was baptised in the local church of St. Cuthbert, where his name can be seen in the church register. Cook was the second of eight children of James Cook, a Scottish farm labourer from Ednam
Ednam
Disambiguation: "Ednam" can also refer to the aristocratic title Viscount EdnamEdnam is a small village near Kelso in the Scottish Borders area of Scotland....

 near Kelso, and his locally born wife, Grace Pace, from Thornaby-on-Tees
Thornaby-on-Tees
Thornaby-on-Tees is a town and civil parish within the Borough of Stockton-on-Tees, in the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire, England. It is on the south bank of the River Tees, three miles southeast of Stockton-on-Tees, and four miles southwest of Middlesbrough town centre and has a...

. In 1736, his family moved to Airey Holme farm at Great Ayton
Great Ayton
Great Ayton is a village and civil parish in the Hambleton district of North Yorkshire on the edge of the North York Moors in England. The name Great Ayton is thought to derive from Ea-tun, tun meaning farm and 'ea' meaning river. It has a population of 4,570....

, where his father's employer, Thomas Skottowe, paid for him to attend the local school. In 1741, after five years schooling, he began work for his father, who had by now been promoted to farm manager. For leisure, he would climb a nearby hill, Roseberry Topping
Roseberry Topping
Roseberry Topping is a distinctive hill on the border between North Yorkshire and the borough of Redcar and Cleveland, England. It is situated near Great Ayton and Newton under Roseberry. Its summit has a distinctive half-cone shape with a jagged cliff, which has led to many comparisons with the...

, enjoying the opportunity for solitude. Cooks' Cottage, his parents' last home, which he is likely to have visited, is now in Melbourne, having been moved from England and reassembled, brick by brick, in 1934.
In 1745, when he was 16, Cook moved 20 miles (32.2 km) to the fishing village of Staithes, to be apprenticed as a shop boy to grocer and haberdasher
Haberdasher
A haberdasher is a person who sells small articles for sewing, such as buttons, ribbons, zips, and other notions. In American English, haberdasher is another term for a men's outfitter. A haberdasher's shop or the items sold therein are called haberdashery.-Origin and use:The word appears in...

 William Sanderson. Historians have speculated that this is where Cook first felt the lure of the sea while gazing out of the shop window.

After 18 months, not proving suitable for shop work, Cook travelled to the nearby port town of Whitby
Whitby
Whitby is a seaside town, port and civil parish in the Scarborough borough of North Yorkshire, England. Situated on the east coast of Yorkshire at the mouth of the River Esk, Whitby has a combined maritime, mineral and tourist heritage, and is home to the ruins of Whitby Abbey where Caedmon, the...

 to be introduced to friends of Sanderson's, John and Henry Walker. The Walkers were prominent local ship-owners and Quakers
Religious Society of Friends
The Religious Society of Friends, or Friends Church, is a Christian movement which stresses the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers. Members are known as Friends, or popularly as Quakers. It is made of independent organisations, which have split from one another due to doctrinal differences...

, and were in the coal trade. Their house is now the Captain Cook Memorial Museum
Captain Cook Memorial Museum
Captain Cook Memorial Museum is in Whitby, North Yorkshire, England, north of York. The Museum is in Walker’s House which belonged to Captain John Walker to whom the great explorer, Captain Cook was apprenticed in 1746, and to which Cook returned in the winter of 1771/2 after the First Voyage.-...

. Cook was taken on as a merchant navy
Merchant Navy
The Merchant Navy is the maritime register of the United Kingdom, and describes the seagoing commercial interests of UK-registered ships and their crews. Merchant Navy vessels fly the Red Ensign and are regulated by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency...

 apprentice in their small fleet of vessels, plying coal along the English coast. His first assignment was aboard the collier
Collier (ship type)
Collier is a historical term used to describe a bulk cargo ship designed to carry coal, especially for naval use by coal-fired warships. In the late 18th century a number of wooden-hulled sailing colliers gained fame after being adapted for use in voyages of exploration in the South Pacific, for...

 Freelove, and he spent several years on this and various other coasters
Coastal trading vessel
Coastal trading vessels, also known as coasters, are shallow-hulled ships used for trade between locations on the same island or continent. Their shallow hulls mean that they can get through reefs where deeper-hulled sea-going ships usually cannot....

, sailing between the Tyne
River Tyne
The River Tyne is a river in North East England in Great Britain. It is formed by the confluence of two rivers: the North Tyne and the South Tyne. These two rivers converge at Warden Rock near Hexham in Northumberland at a place dubbed 'The Meeting of the Waters'.The North Tyne rises on the...

 and London. As part of his apprenticeship, Cook applied himself to the study of algebra
Algebra
Algebra is the branch of mathematics concerning the study of the rules of operations and relations, and the constructions and concepts arising from them, including terms, polynomials, equations and algebraic structures...

, geometry
Geometry
Geometry arose as the field of knowledge dealing with spatial relationships. Geometry was one of the two fields of pre-modern mathematics, the other being the study of numbers ....

, trigonometry
Trigonometry
Trigonometry is a branch of mathematics that studies triangles and the relationships between their sides and the angles between these sides. Trigonometry defines the trigonometric functions, which describe those relationships and have applicability to cyclical phenomena, such as waves...

, navigation
Navigation
Navigation is the process of monitoring and controlling the movement of a craft or vehicle from one place to another. It is also the term of art used for the specialized knowledge used by navigators to perform navigation tasks...

 and astronomy
Astronomy
Astronomy is a natural science that deals with the study of celestial objects and phenomena that originate outside the atmosphere of Earth...

—all skills he would need one day to command his own ship.

His three-year apprenticeship completed, Cook began working on trading ships in the Baltic Sea
Baltic Sea
The Baltic Sea is a brackish mediterranean sea located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. It is bounded by the Scandinavian Peninsula, the mainland of Europe, and the Danish islands. It drains into the Kattegat by way of the Øresund, the Great Belt and...

. After passing his examinations in 1752, he soon progressed through the merchant navy ranks, starting with his promotion in that year to mate
Master's mate
Master's mate is an obsolete rating which was used by the Royal Navy, United States Navy and merchant services in both countries for a senior petty officer who assisted the master...

 aboard the collier brig
Brig
A brig is a sailing vessel with two square-rigged masts. During the Age of Sail, brigs were seen as fast and manoeuvrable and were used as both naval warships and merchant vessels. They were especially popular in the 18th and early 19th centuries...

 Friendship. In 1755, within a month of being offered command of this vessel, he volunteered for service in the Royal Navy
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

, when Britain
Kingdom of Great Britain
The former Kingdom of Great Britain, sometimes described as the 'United Kingdom of Great Britain', That the Two Kingdoms of Scotland and England, shall upon the 1st May next ensuing the date hereof, and forever after, be United into One Kingdom by the Name of GREAT BRITAIN. was a sovereign...

 was re-arming for what was to become the Seven Years' War
Seven Years' War
The Seven Years' War was a global military war between 1756 and 1763, involving most of the great powers of the time and affecting Europe, North America, Central America, the West African coast, India, and the Philippines...

. Despite the need to start back at the bottom of the naval hierarchy, Cook realised his career would advance more quickly in military service and entered the Navy at Wapping on 7 June 1755.

Cook married Elizabeth Batts (1742–1835), the daughter of Samuel Batts, keeper of the Bell Inn, Wapping
Wapping
Wapping is a place in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets which forms part of the Docklands to the east of the City of London. It is situated between the north bank of the River Thames and the ancient thoroughfare simply called The Highway...

 and one of his mentors, on 21 December 1762 at St. Margaret's Church in Barking
Barking
Barking is a suburban town in the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, in East London, England. A retail and commercial centre situated in the west of the borough, it lies east of Charing Cross. Barking was in the historic county of Essex until it was absorbed by Greater London. The area is...

, Essex. The couple had six children: James (1763–94), Nathaniel (1764–81), Elizabeth (1767–71), Joseph (1768–68), George (1772–72) and Hugh (1776–93). When not at sea, Cook lived in the East End of London
East End of London
The East End of London, also known simply as the East End, is the area of London, England, United Kingdom, east of the medieval walled City of London and north of the River Thames. Although not defined by universally accepted formal boundaries, the River Lea can be considered another boundary...

. He attended St Paul's Church, Shadwell, where his son James was baptised. Cook has no direct descendants—all his children either pre-deceased him or died without having children of their own.

Start of Royal Navy career



Cook's first posting was with HMS Eagle
HMS Eagle (1745)
HMS Eagle was a 58-gun fourth rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, built at Harwich to the dimensions laid down in the 1741 proposals of the 1719 Establishment, and launched on 2 December 1745. Eagle is notable as being one of the ships on which James Cook began his career in the Royal Navy...

, sailing with the rank of master's mate
Master's mate
Master's mate is an obsolete rating which was used by the Royal Navy, United States Navy and merchant services in both countries for a senior petty officer who assisted the master...

. In October and November 1755 he took part in Eagles capture of one French warship and the sinking of another, following which he was promoted to boatswain
Boatswain
A boatswain , bo's'n, bos'n, or bosun is an unlicensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The boatswain supervises the other unlicensed members of the ship's deck department, and typically is not a watchstander, except on vessels with small crews...

 in addition to his other duties. His first temporary command was in March 1756 when he was briefly the master of the Cruizer, a small cutter attached to the Eagle while on patrol.

In June 1757 Cook passed his master
Master (naval)
The master, or sailing master, was a historic term for a naval officer trained in and responsible for the navigation of a sailing vessel...

's examinations at Trinity House
Trinity House
The Corporation of Trinity House of Deptford Strond is the official General Lighthouse Authority for England, Wales and other British territorial waters...

, Deptford
Deptford
Deptford is a district of south London, England, located on the south bank of the River Thames. It is named after a ford of the River Ravensbourne, and from the mid 16th century to the late 19th was home to Deptford Dockyard, the first of the Royal Navy Dockyards.Deptford and the docks are...

, which qualified him to navigate and handle a ship of the King's fleet. He then joined the frigate HMS Solebay as master under Captain Robert Craig.

During the Seven Years' War
Seven Years' War
The Seven Years' War was a global military war between 1756 and 1763, involving most of the great powers of the time and affecting Europe, North America, Central America, the West African coast, India, and the Philippines...

, he served in North America as master of Pembroke
HMS Pembroke (1757)
HMS Pembroke was a 60-gun fourth rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, built at Plymouth Dockyard to the draught specified in the 1745 Establishment as amended in 1752, and launched on 2 June 1757....

. In 1758, he took part in the major amphibious assault that captured the Fortress of Louisbourg
Fortress of Louisbourg
The Fortress of Louisbourg is a national historic site and the location of a one-quarter partial reconstruction of an 18th century French fortress at Louisbourg, Nova Scotia...

 from the French, after which he participated in the siege of Quebec City
Quebec City
Quebec , also Québec, Quebec City or Québec City is the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec and is located within the Capitale-Nationale region. It is the second most populous city in Quebec after Montreal, which is about to the southwest...

 and then the Battle of the Plains of Abraham
Battle of the Plains of Abraham
The Battle of the Plains of Abraham, also known as the Battle of Quebec, was a pivotal battle in the Seven Years' War...

 in 1759. He showed a talent for surveying
Surveying
See Also: Public Land Survey SystemSurveying or land surveying is the technique, profession, and science of accurately determining the terrestrial or three-dimensional position of points and the distances and angles between them...

 and cartography
Cartography
Cartography is the study and practice of making maps. Combining science, aesthetics, and technique, cartography builds on the premise that reality can be modeled in ways that communicate spatial information effectively.The fundamental problems of traditional cartography are to:*Set the map's...

, and was responsible for mapping much of the entrance to the Saint Lawrence River
Saint Lawrence River
The Saint Lawrence is a large river flowing approximately from southwest to northeast in the middle latitudes of North America, connecting the Great Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean. It is the primary drainage conveyor of the Great Lakes Basin...

 during the siege, thus allowing General Wolfe
James Wolfe
Major General James P. Wolfe was a British Army officer, known for his training reforms but remembered chiefly for his victory over the French in Canada...

 to make his famous stealth attack on the Plains of Abraham
Plains of Abraham
The Plains of Abraham is a historic area within The Battlefields Park in Quebec City, Quebec, that was originally grazing land, but became famous as the site of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, which took place on 13 September 1759. Though written into the history books, housing and minor...

.

Cook's aptitude for surveying was put to good use mapping the jagged coast of Newfoundland in the 1760s. He surveyed the northwest stretch in 1763 and 1764, the south coast between the Burin Peninsula
Burin Peninsula
The Burin Peninsula is a Canadian peninsula located on the south coast of the island of Newfoundland in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador....

 and Cape Ray
Cape Ray
Cape Ray is a headland located at the southwestern extremity of the island of Newfoundland in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador....

 in 1765 and 1766, and the west coast in 1767. His five seasons in Newfoundland produced the first large-scale and accurate maps of the island's coasts; they also gave Cook his mastery of practical surveying, achieved under often adverse conditions, and brought him to the attention of the Admiralty
Admiralty
The Admiralty was formerly the authority in the Kingdom of England, and later in the United Kingdom, responsible for the command of the Royal Navy...

 and Royal Society
Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

 at a crucial moment both in his career and in the direction of British overseas discovery. Cook's map would be used into the 20th century—copies of it being referenced by those sailing Newfoundland's waters for 200 years.

Following on from his exertions in Newfoundland, it was at this time that Cook wrote that he intended to go not only:
"... farther than any man has been before me, but as far as I think it is possible for a man to go."

First voyage (1768–71)




In 1766, the Royal Society
Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

 engaged Cook to travel to the Pacific Ocean to observe and record the transit of Venus
Transit of Venus
A transit of Venus across the Sun takes place when the planet Venus passes directly between the Sun and Earth, becoming visible against the solar disk. During a transit, Venus can be seen from Earth as a small black disk moving across the face of the Sun...

 across the Sun
Sun
The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System. It is almost perfectly spherical and consists of hot plasma interwoven with magnetic fields...

. Cook, at the age of 39, was promoted to lieutenant and named as commander of the expedition. The expedition sailed from England in 1768, rounded Cape Horn
Cape Horn
Cape Horn is the southernmost headland of the Tierra del Fuego archipelago of southern Chile, and is located on the small Hornos Island...

 and continued westward across the Pacific to arrive at Tahiti
Tahiti
Tahiti is the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia, located in the archipelago of the Society Islands in the southern Pacific Ocean. It is the economic, cultural and political centre of French Polynesia. The island was formed from volcanic activity and is high and mountainous...

 on 13 April 1769, where the observations of the Venus Transit was made. However, the result of the observations was not as conclusive or accurate as had been hoped. Once the observations were completed, Cook opened the sealed orders
Sealed Orders
Sealed orders are the orders given the commanding officer of a ship or squadron that are sealed up, which he is not allowed to open until he has proceeded a certain length into the high seas; an arrangement in order to ensure secrecy in a time of war....

 which were additional instructions from the Admiralty
Admiralty
The Admiralty was formerly the authority in the Kingdom of England, and later in the United Kingdom, responsible for the command of the Royal Navy...

 for the second part of his voyage: to search the south Pacific for signs of the postulated rich southern continent
Continent
A continent is one of several very large landmasses on Earth. They are generally identified by convention rather than any strict criteria, with seven regions commonly regarded as continents—they are : Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe, and Australia.Plate tectonics is...

 of Terra Australis
Terra Australis
Terra Australis, Terra Australis Ignota or Terra Australis Incognita was a hypothesized continent appearing on European maps from the 15th to the 18th century...

.
Cook later mapped the complete New Zealand coastline, making only some minor errors. He then sailed west, reaching the south-eastern coast of the Australian continent on 19 April 1770, and in doing so his expedition became the first recorded Europeans to have encountered its eastern coastline.At this time, the International Date Line
International Date Line
The International Date Line is a generally north-south imaginary line on the surface of the Earth, passing through the middle of the Pacific Ocean, that designates the place where each calendar day begins...

 had yet to be agreed, and so, the dates in Cook's journal are a day earlier than those accepted today.


On 23 April he made his first recorded direct observation of indigenous Australians
Indigenous Australians
Indigenous Australians are the original inhabitants of the Australian continent and nearby islands. The Aboriginal Indigenous Australians migrated from the Indian continent around 75,000 to 100,000 years ago....

 at Brush Island
Brush Island
Brush Island is an island nature reserve lying off the south coast of New South Wales, Australia. It lies about 2 km south-east of the coastal village of Bawley Point. It has an unmanned lighthouse. The island was made a nature reserve in 1963 and is important for breeding seabirds...

 near Bawley Point, noting in his journal: "...and were so near the Shore as to distinguish several people upon the Sea beach they appear'd to be of a very dark or black Colour but whether this was the real colour of their skins or the C[l]othes they might have on I know not." On 29 April Cook and crew made their first landfall on the mainland of the continent at a place now known as the Kurnell Peninsula
Cronulla sand dunes, Kurnell Peninsula
The Cronulla sand dunes are located on the Kurnell Peninsula in the local government area of Sutherland Shire, Sydney Australia.The Cronulla sand dunes are a protected area that became listed on the NSW State Heritage Register on 26 September 2003.-History:...

, which he named Botany Bay
Botany Bay
Botany Bay is a bay in Sydney, New South Wales, a few kilometres south of the Sydney central business district. The Cooks River and the Georges River are the two major tributaries that flow into the bay...

 after the unique specimens retrieved by the botanists Joseph Banks
Joseph Banks
Sir Joseph Banks, 1st Baronet, GCB, PRS was an English naturalist, botanist and patron of the natural sciences. He took part in Captain James Cook's first great voyage . Banks is credited with the introduction to the Western world of eucalyptus, acacia, mimosa and the genus named after him,...

 and Daniel Solander
Daniel Solander
Daniel Carlsson Solander or Daniel Charles Solander was a Swedish naturalist and an apostle of Carl Linnaeus. Solander was the first university educated scientist to set foot on Australian soil.-Biography:...

. It is here that James Cook made first contact with an Aboriginal tribe known as the Gweagal
Gweagal
The Gweagal are a clan of the Tharawal tribe of Indigenous Australians, who are traditional custodians of the southern geographic areas of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia....

.

After his departure from Botany Bay he continued northwards, and a mishap occurred, on 11 June, when Endeavour
HM Bark Endeavour
HMS Endeavour, also known as HM Bark Endeavour, was a British Royal Navy research vessel commanded by Lieutenant James Cook on his first voyage of discovery, to Australia and New Zealand from 1769 to 1771....

 ran aground on a shoal of the Great Barrier Reef
Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef is the world'slargest reef system composed of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for over 2,600 kilometres over an area of approximately...

, and then "nursed into a river mouth on 18 June 1770.". The ship was badly damaged and his voyage was delayed almost seven weeks while repairs were carried out on the beach (near the docks of modern Cooktown, at the mouth of the Endeavour River
Endeavour River
The Endeavour River on Cape York Peninsula in Far North Queensland, Australia, was named in 1770 by Lt. James Cook, R.N., after he was forced to beach his ship, HM Bark Endeavour, for repairs in the river mouth, after damaging it on Endeavour Reef...

). Once repairs were complete the voyage continued, sailing through Torres Strait
Torres Strait
The Torres Strait is a body of water which lies between Australia and the Melanesian island of New Guinea. It is approximately wide at its narrowest extent. To the south is Cape York Peninsula, the northernmost continental extremity of the Australian state of Queensland...

 and on 22 August he landed on Possession Island, where he claimed the entire coastline he had just explored as British territory. He returned to England via Batavia
History of Jakarta
The history of Jakarta begins with its first recorded mention as a Hindu port settlement in the 4th century. Ever since, the city had been variously claimed by the Indianized kingdom of Tarumanegara, Hindu Kingdom of Sunda, Muslim Sultanate of Banten, Dutch East Indies, Empire of Japan, and finally...

 (modern Jakarta
Jakarta
Jakarta is the capital and largest city of Indonesia. Officially known as the Special Capital Territory of Jakarta, it is located on the northwest coast of Java, has an area of , and a population of 9,580,000. Jakarta is the country's economic, cultural and political centre...

, Indonesia), where many in his crew succumbed to malaria, the Cape of Good Hope
Cape of Good Hope
The Cape of Good Hope is a rocky headland on the Atlantic coast of the Cape Peninsula, South Africa.There is a misconception that the Cape of Good Hope is the southern tip of Africa, because it was once believed to be the dividing point between the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. In fact, the...

 and the island of Saint Helena
Saint Helena
Saint Helena , named after St Helena of Constantinople, is an island of volcanic origin in the South Atlantic Ocean. It is part of the British overseas territory of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha which also includes Ascension Island and the islands of Tristan da Cunha...

, arriving on 12 July 1771.

Interlude


Cook's journals
Diary
A diary is a record with discrete entries arranged by date reporting on what has happened over the course of a day or other period. A personal diary may include a person's experiences, and/or thoughts or feelings, including comment on current events outside the writer's direct experience. Someone...

 were published upon his return, and he became something of a hero among the scientific community. Among the general public, however, the aristocratic botanist
Botany
Botany, plant science, or plant biology is a branch of biology that involves the scientific study of plant life. Traditionally, botany also included the study of fungi, algae and viruses...

 Joseph Banks
Joseph Banks
Sir Joseph Banks, 1st Baronet, GCB, PRS was an English naturalist, botanist and patron of the natural sciences. He took part in Captain James Cook's first great voyage . Banks is credited with the introduction to the Western world of eucalyptus, acacia, mimosa and the genus named after him,...

 was a bigger hero. Banks even attempted to take command of Cook's second voyage, but removed himself from the voyage before it began, and Johann Reinhold Forster
Johann Reinhold Forster
Johann Reinhold Forster was a German Lutheran pastor and naturalist of partial Scottish descent who made contributions to the early ornithology of Europe and North America...

 and his son Georg Forster
Georg Forster
Johann Georg Adam Forster was a German naturalist, ethnologist, travel writer, journalist, and revolutionary. At an early age, he accompanied his father on several scientific expeditions, including James Cook's second voyage to the Pacific...

 were taken on as scientists for the voyage. Cook's son George was born five days before he left for his second voyage.

Second voyage (1772–75)




Shortly after his return from the first voyage, Cook was promoted in August 1771, to the rank of commander
Commander (Royal Navy)
Commander is a senior officer rank of the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom. It is immediately junior to captain and immediately senior to the rank of lieutenant commander...

. Then, in 1772, he was commissioned by the Royal Society to search for the hypothetical Terra Australis
Terra Australis
Terra Australis, Terra Australis Ignota or Terra Australis Incognita was a hypothesized continent appearing on European maps from the 15th to the 18th century...

. On his first voyage, Cook had demonstrated by circumnavigating New Zealand that it was not attached to a larger landmass to the south. Although he charted almost the entire eastern coastline of Australia, showing it to be continental in size, the Terra Australis was believed to lie further south. Despite this evidence to the contrary, Alexander Dalrymple
Alexander Dalrymple
Alexander Dalrymple was a Scottish geographer and the first Hydrographer of the British Admiralty. He was the main proponent of the theory that there existed a vast undiscovered continent in the South Pacific, Terra Australis Incognita...

 and others of the Royal Society still believed that this massive southern continent should exist.

Cook commanded HMS Resolution on this voyage, while Tobias Furneaux
Tobias Furneaux
Captain Tobias Furneaux was an English navigator and Royal Navy officer, who accompanied James Cook on his second voyage of exploration. He was the first man to circumnavigate the world in both directions....

 commanded its companion ship, HMS Adventure
HMS Adventure (1771)
HMS Adventure was a barque of the Royal Navy that sailed with Resolution on James Cook's second expedition to the Pacific in 1772–1775. She was the first ship to circumnavigate the globe from west to east....

. Cook's expedition circumnavigated the globe at a very high southern latitude
Latitude
In geography, the latitude of a location on the Earth is the angular distance of that location south or north of the Equator. The latitude is an angle, and is usually measured in degrees . The equator has a latitude of 0°, the North pole has a latitude of 90° north , and the South pole has a...

, becoming one of the first to cross the Antarctic Circle
Antarctic Circle
The Antarctic Circle is one of the five major circles of latitude that mark maps of the Earth. For 2011, it is the parallel of latitude that runs south of the Equator.-Description:...

 on 17 January 1773. He also surveyed, mapped and took possession for Britain of South Georgia
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands is a British overseas territory and overseas territory of the European Union in the southern Atlantic Ocean. It is a remote and inhospitable collection of islands, consisting of South Georgia and a chain of smaller islands, known as the South Sandwich...

 explored by Anthony de la Roché
Anthony de la Roché
Anthony de la Roché, born sometime in the 17th century, was an English merchant born in London to a French Huguenot father and an English mother...

 in 1675, discovered and named Clerke Rocks
Clerke Rocks
The Clerke Rocks are a group of small rocky islands some southeast of South Georgia that extend from east to west. The Clerke Rocks include The Office Boys at the northeastern end and Nobby at the southeastern end of the group...

 and the South Sandwich Islands
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands is a British overseas territory and overseas territory of the European Union in the southern Atlantic Ocean. It is a remote and inhospitable collection of islands, consisting of South Georgia and a chain of smaller islands, known as the South Sandwich...

 ("Sandwich Land"). In the Antarctic fog, Resolution and Adventure became separated. Furneaux made his way to New Zealand, where he lost some of his men during an encounter with Māori, and eventually sailed back to Britain, while Cook continued to explore the Antarctic, reaching 71°10'S on 31 January 1774.

Cook almost encountered the mainland of Antarctica, but turned back north towards Tahiti to resupply his ship. He then resumed his southward course in a second fruitless attempt to find the supposed continent. On this leg of the voyage he brought with him a young Tahitian named Omai
Omai
Mai , mistakenly known as Omai in Britain, was a young Ra'iatean man who became the second Pacific Islander to visit Europe, after Ahu-toru who was brought to Paris by Bougainville in 1768...

, who proved to be somewhat less knowledgeable about the Pacific than Tupaia
Tupaia (navigator)
Tupaia was a Polynesian navigator and arioi , originally from the island of Ra'iatea in the Pacific Islands group known to Europeans as the Society Islands. His remarkable navigational skills and Pacific geographical knowledge were to be utilised by Lt. James Cook, R.N...

 had been on the first voyage. On his return voyage, in 1774 he landed at the Friendly Islands
Tonga
Tonga, officially the Kingdom of Tonga , is a state and an archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, comprising 176 islands scattered over of ocean in the South Pacific...

, Easter Island
Easter Island
Easter Island is a Polynesian island in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, at the southeasternmost point of the Polynesian triangle. A special territory of Chile that was annexed in 1888, Easter Island is famous for its 887 extant monumental statues, called moai, created by the early Rapanui people...

, Norfolk Island
Norfolk Island
Norfolk Island is a small island in the Pacific Ocean located between Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia. The island is part of the Commonwealth of Australia, but it enjoys a large degree of self-governance...

, New Caledonia
New Caledonia
New Caledonia is a special collectivity of France located in the southwest Pacific Ocean, east of Australia and about from Metropolitan France. The archipelago, part of the Melanesia subregion, includes the main island of Grande Terre, the Loyalty Islands, the Belep archipelago, the Isle of...

, and Vanuatu
Vanuatu
Vanuatu , officially the Republic of Vanuatu , is an island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean. The archipelago, which is of volcanic origin, is some east of northern Australia, northeast of New Caledonia, west of Fiji, and southeast of the Solomon Islands, near New Guinea.Vanuatu was...

. His reports upon his return home put to rest the popular myth of Terra Australis.

Another accomplishment of the second voyage was the successful employment of the Larcum Kendall K1 chronometer
Marine chronometer
A marine chronometer is a clock that is precise and accurate enough to be used as a portable time standard; it can therefore be used to determine longitude by means of celestial navigation...

, which enabled Cook to calculate his longitudinal position
Longitude
Longitude is a geographic coordinate that specifies the east-west position of a point on the Earth's surface. It is an angular measurement, usually expressed in degrees, minutes and seconds, and denoted by the Greek letter lambda ....

 with much greater accuracy. Cook's log was full of praise for the watch which he used to make charts of the southern Pacific Ocean that were so remarkably accurate that copies of them were still in use in the mid-20th century.

Upon his return, Cook was promoted to the rank of captain
Captain (Royal Navy)
Captain is a senior officer rank of the Royal Navy. It ranks above Commander and below Commodore and has a NATO ranking code of OF-5. The rank is equivalent to a Colonel in the British Army or Royal Marines and to a Group Captain in the Royal Air Force. The rank of Group Captain is based on the...

 and given an honorary retirement from the Royal Navy, as an officer in the Greenwich Hospital. His acceptance was reluctant, insisting that he be allowed to quit the post if the opportunity for active duty presented itself. His fame now extended beyond the Admiralty and he was also made a Fellow of the Royal Society
Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

 and awarded the Copley Gold Medal
Copley Medal
The Copley Medal is an award given by the Royal Society of London for "outstanding achievements in research in any branch of science, and alternates between the physical sciences and the biological sciences"...

, painted by Nathaniel Dance-Holland
Nathaniel Dance-Holland
Sir Nathaniel Dance-Holland, 1st Baronet was a notable English portrait painter and later a politician.The third son of architect George Dance the Elder, Dance studied art under Francis Hayman, and like many contemporaries also studied in Italy...

, dined with James Boswell
James Boswell
James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh, Scotland; he is best known for the biography he wrote of one of his contemporaries, the English literary figure Samuel Johnson....

 and described in the House of Lords
House of Lords
The House of Lords is the upper house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Like the House of Commons, it meets in the Palace of Westminster....

 as "the first navigator in Europe". But he could not be kept away from the sea. A third voyage was planned and Cook volunteered to find the Northwest Passage
Northwest Passage
The Northwest Passage is a sea route through the Arctic Ocean, along the northern coast of North America via waterways amidst the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans...

. Cook travelled to the Pacific and hoped to travel east to the Atlantic, while a simultaneous voyage travelled the opposite way.

Third voyage (1776–79)




On his last voyage, Cook once again commanded HMS Resolution, while Captain Charles Clerke
Charles Clerke
Captain Charles Clerke RN was an officer in the Royal Navy who sailed on four voyages of exploration.Clerke started studying at the Royal Naval Academy in Portsmouth when he was 13. During the Seven Years' War he served aboard HMS Dorsetshire and HMS Bellona...

 commanded HMS Discovery
HMS Discovery (1774)
HMS Discovery was the consort ship of James Cook's third expedition to the Pacific Ocean in 1776 - 1780. Like Cook's other ships, Discovery was a Whitby-built collier of 298 tons, originally named Diligence when she was built in 1774. Originally a brig, Cook had her changed to a full rigged ship...

. Ostensibly, the voyage was planned to return Omai to Tahiti; this is what the general public believed, as he had become a favourite curiosity in London. Principally the purpose of the voyage was an attempt to discover the famed Northwest Passage
Northwest Passage
The Northwest Passage is a sea route through the Arctic Ocean, along the northern coast of North America via waterways amidst the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans...

. After returning Omai, Cook travelled north and in 1778 became the first European to visit the Hawaiian Islands
Hawaiian Islands
The Hawaiian Islands are an archipelago of eight major islands, several atolls, numerous smaller islets, and undersea seamounts in the North Pacific Ocean, extending some 1,500 miles from the island of Hawaii in the south to northernmost Kure Atoll...

. In passing and after initial landfall in January 1778 at Waimea
Waimea, Kauai County, Hawaii
Waimea is a census-designated place in Kauai County, Hawaii, United States. The population was 1,787 at the 2000 census...

 harbour, Kauai
Kauai
Kauai or Kauai, known as Tauai in the ancient Kaua'i dialect, is geologically the oldest of the main Hawaiian Islands. With an area of , it is the fourth largest of the main islands in the Hawaiian archipelago, and the 21st largest island in the United States. Known also as the "Garden Isle",...

, Cook named the archipelago
Archipelago
An archipelago , sometimes called an island group, is a chain or cluster of islands. The word archipelago is derived from the Greek ἄρχι- – arkhi- and πέλαγος – pélagos through the Italian arcipelago...

 the "Sandwich Islands" after the fourth Earl of Sandwich
John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich
John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich, PC, FRS was a British statesman who succeeded his grandfather, Edward Montagu, 3rd Earl of Sandwich, as the Earl of Sandwich in 1729, at the age of ten...

—the acting First Lord of the Admiralty.

From the South Pacific, he went northeast to explore the west coast of North America north of the Spanish settlements in Alta California
Alta California
Alta California was a province and territory in the Viceroyalty of New Spain and later a territory and department in independent Mexico. The territory was created in 1769 out of the northern part of the former province of Las Californias, and consisted of the modern American states of California,...

. He made landfall at approximately 44°30′ north latitude, near Cape Foulweather
Cape Foulweather
Cape Foulweather is a basalt outcropping above the Pacific Ocean on the central coastline of the U.S. state Oregon in Lincoln County south of Depoe Bay. The cape is notable as the first promontory on the northwest coast of New Albion to be sighted and named by Captain James Cook, while on his...

 on the Oregon coast, which he named. Bad weather forced his ships south to about 43° north
43rd parallel north
The 43rd parallel north is a circle of latitude that is 43 degrees north of the Earth's equatorial plane. It crosses Europe, the Mediterranean Sea, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, North America, and the Atlantic Ocean....

 before they could begin their exploration of the coast northward. He unknowingly sailed past the Strait of Juan de Fuca
Strait of Juan de Fuca
The Strait of Juan de Fuca is a large body of water about long that is the Salish Sea outlet to the Pacific Ocean...

, and soon after entered Nootka Sound
Nootka Sound
Nootka Sound is a complex inlet or sound of the Pacific Ocean on the rugged west coast of Vancouver Island, in the Canadian province of British Columbia. Historically also known as King George's Sound, as a strait it separates Vancouver Island and Nootka Island.-History:The inlet is part of the...

 on Vancouver Island
Vancouver Island
Vancouver Island is a large island in British Columbia, Canada. It is one of several North American locations named after George Vancouver, the British Royal Navy officer who explored the Pacific Northwest coast of North America between 1791 and 1794...

. He anchored near the First Nations
First Nations
First Nations is a term that collectively refers to various Aboriginal peoples in Canada who are neither Inuit nor Métis. There are currently over 630 recognised First Nations governments or bands spread across Canada, roughly half of which are in the provinces of Ontario and British Columbia. The...

 village of Yuquot
Yuquot, British Columbia
Yuquot or Friendly Cove is a small settlement of less than 25 on Nootka Island in Nootka Sound, just west of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada...

. Cook's two ships spent about a month in Nootka Sound, from 29 March to 26 April 1778, in what Cook called Ship Cove, now Resolution Cove, at the south end of Bligh Island, about 5 miles (8 km) east across Nootka Sound from Yuquot, a Nuu-chah-nulth village (whose chief Cook did not identify but may have been Maquinna
Maquinna
Maquinna was the chief of the Nuu-chah-nulth people of Nootka Sound, during the heyday of the maritime fur trade in the 1780s and 1790s on the Pacific Northwest Coast...

). Relations between Cook's crew of the people of Yuquot were cordial if sometimes strained. In trading, the people of Yuquot demanded much more valuable items than the usual trinkets that had worked for Cook's crew in Hawaii. Metal objects were much desired, but the lead, pewter, and tin traded at first soon fell into disrepute. The most valuable items the British received in trade were sea otter
Sea Otter
The sea otter is a marine mammal native to the coasts of the northern and eastern North Pacific Ocean. Adult sea otters typically weigh between 14 and 45 kg , making them the heaviest members of the weasel family, but among the smallest marine mammals...

 pelts. Over the month long stay the Yuquot "hosts" essentially controlled the trade with the British vessels, instead of vice versa. Generally the natives visited the British vessels at Resolution Cove instead of the British visiting the village of Yuquot at Friendly Cove.

After leaving Nootka Sound, Cook explored and mapped the coast all the way to the Bering Strait
Bering Strait
The Bering Strait , known to natives as Imakpik, is a sea strait between Cape Dezhnev, Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, Russia, the easternmost point of the Asian continent and Cape Prince of Wales, Alaska, USA, the westernmost point of the North American continent, with latitude of about 65°40'N,...

, on the way identifying what came to be known as Cook Inlet
Cook Inlet
Cook Inlet stretches from the Gulf of Alaska to Anchorage in south-central Alaska. Cook Inlet branches into the Knik Arm and Turnagain Arm at its northern end, almost surrounding Anchorage....

 in Alaska. It has been said that, in a single visit, Cook charted the majority of the North American northwest coastline on world maps for the first time, determined the extent of Alaska and closed the gaps in Russian (from the West) and Spanish (from the South) exploratory probes of the Northern limits of the Pacific.

The Bering Strait proved to be impassable, although he made several attempts to sail through it. He became increasingly frustrated on this voyage, and perhaps began to suffer from a stomach ailment; it has been speculated that this led to irrational behaviour towards his crew, such as forcing them to eat walrus
Walrus
The walrus is a large flippered marine mammal with a discontinuous circumpolar distribution in the Arctic Ocean and sub-Arctic seas of the Northern Hemisphere. The walrus is the only living species in the Odobenidae family and Odobenus genus. It is subdivided into three subspecies: the Atlantic...

 meat, which they found inedible.

Cook returned to Hawaii in 1779. After sailing around the archipelago for some eight weeks, he made landfall at Kealakekua Bay
Kealakekua Bay
Kealakekua Bay is located on the Kona coast of the island of Hawaii about south of Kailua-Kona.Settled over a thousand years ago, the surrounding area contains many archeological and historical sites such as religious temples, and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places listings on...

, on 'Hawaii Island'
Hawaii (island)
The Island of Hawaii, also called the Big Island or Hawaii Island , is a volcanic island in the North Pacific Ocean...

, largest island in the Hawaiian Archipelago
Hawaiian Islands
The Hawaiian Islands are an archipelago of eight major islands, several atolls, numerous smaller islets, and undersea seamounts in the North Pacific Ocean, extending some 1,500 miles from the island of Hawaii in the south to northernmost Kure Atoll...

. Cook's arrival coincided with the Makahiki
Makahiki
The Makahiki season was the ancient Hawaiian New Year festival, in honor of the god Lono of the Hawaiian religion.It was a holiday covering four consecutive lunar months, approximately from October or November through February or March. Thus it might be thought of as including the equivalent of...

, a Hawaiian harvest festival
Harvest festival
A Harvest Festival is an annual celebration which occurs around the time of the main harvest of a given region. Given the differences in climate and crops around the world, harvest festivals can be found at various times throughout the world...

 of worship for the Polynesian god Lono
Lono
In Hawaiian mythology, the deity Lono is associated with fertility, agriculture, rainfall, and music. In one of the many Hawaiian legends of Lono, he is a fertility and music god who descended to Earth on a rainbow to marry Laka. In agricultural and planting traditions, Lono was identified with...

. Coincidentally the form of Cook's ship, HMS Resolution, or more particularly the mast formation, sails and rigging, resembled certain significant artifacts that formed part of the season of worship. Similarly, Cook's clockwise route around the island of Hawaii before making landfall resembled the processions that took place in a clockwise direction around the island during the Lono festivals. It has been argued (most extensively by Marshall Sahlins
Marshall Sahlins
Marshall David Sahlins is a prominent American anthropologist. He received both a Bachelors and Masters degree at the University of Michigan where he studied with Leslie White, and earned his Ph.D. at Columbia University in 1954 where his main intellectual influences included Karl Polanyi and...

) that such coincidences were the reasons for Cook's (and to a limited extent, his crew's) initial deification
Apotheosis
Apotheosis is the glorification of a subject to divine level. The term has meanings in theology, where it refers to a belief, and in art, where it refers to a genre.In theology, the term apotheosis refers to the idea that an individual has been raised to godlike stature...

 by some Hawaiians who treated Cook as an incarnation of Lono. Though this view was first suggested by members of Cook's expedition, the idea that any Hawaiians understood Cook to be Lono, and the evidence presented in support of it was challenged in 1992.

Death


After a month's stay, Cook got under sail again to resume his exploration of the Northern Pacific. However, shortly after leaving Hawaii Island, the foremast of the Resolution broke and the ships returned to Kealakekua Bay
Kealakekua Bay
Kealakekua Bay is located on the Kona coast of the island of Hawaii about south of Kailua-Kona.Settled over a thousand years ago, the surrounding area contains many archeological and historical sites such as religious temples, and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places listings on...

 for repairs. It has been hypothesised that the return to the islands by Cook's expedition was not just unexpected by the Hawaiians, but also unwelcome because the season of Lono had recently ended (presuming that they associated Cook with Lono
Lono
In Hawaiian mythology, the deity Lono is associated with fertility, agriculture, rainfall, and music. In one of the many Hawaiian legends of Lono, he is a fertility and music god who descended to Earth on a rainbow to marry Laka. In agricultural and planting traditions, Lono was identified with...

 and Makahiki
Makahiki
The Makahiki season was the ancient Hawaiian New Year festival, in honor of the god Lono of the Hawaiian religion.It was a holiday covering four consecutive lunar months, approximately from October or November through February or March. Thus it might be thought of as including the equivalent of...

). In any case, tensions rose and a number of quarrels broke out between the Europeans and Hawaiians. On 14 February at Kealakekua Bay, some Hawaiians took one of Cook's small boats. Normally, as thefts were quite common in Tahiti
Tahiti
Tahiti is the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia, located in the archipelago of the Society Islands in the southern Pacific Ocean. It is the economic, cultural and political centre of French Polynesia. The island was formed from volcanic activity and is high and mountainous...

 and the other islands, Cook would have taken hostages until the stolen articles were returned. Indeed, he attempted to take hostage the King of Hawaiʻi
Alii Aimoku of Hawaii
The following is a list of alii aimoku of Hawaii. "Alii aimoku" refers to the ruler of the island. alii refers to the ruling class of ancient Hawaii...

, Kalaniʻōpuʻu. The Hawaiians prevented this, and Cook's men had to retreat to the beach. As Cook turned his back to help launch the boats, he was struck on the head by the villagers and then stabbed to death as he fell on his face in the surf. Hawaiian tradition says that he was killed by a chief named Kalanimanokahoowaha. The Hawaiians dragged his body away. Four of the Marines with Cook were also killed and two wounded in the confrontation.
The esteem in which he was nevertheless held by the Hawaiians resulted in his body being retained by their chiefs and elders. Following the practice of the time, Cook's body underwent funerary rituals similar to those reserved for the chiefs and highest elders of the society. The body was disembowelled, baked to facilitate removal of the flesh, and the bones were carefully cleaned for preservation as religious icons in a fashion somewhat reminiscent of the treatment of European saints in the Middle Ages. Some of Cook's remains, disclosing some corroborating evidence to this effect, were eventually returned to the British for a formal burial at sea
Burial at sea
Burial at sea describes the procedure of disposing of human remains in the ocean, normally from a ship or boat. It is regularly performed by navies, but also can be done by private citizens in many countries.-By religion:...

 following an appeal by the crew.

Clerke took over the expedition and made a final attempt to pass through the Bering Strait
Bering Strait
The Bering Strait , known to natives as Imakpik, is a sea strait between Cape Dezhnev, Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, Russia, the easternmost point of the Asian continent and Cape Prince of Wales, Alaska, USA, the westernmost point of the North American continent, with latitude of about 65°40'N,...

. Following the death of Clerke, Resolution and Discovery returned home in October 1780 commanded by John Gore
John Gore (seaman)
Captain John Gore was a British American sailor who circumnavigated the globe four times with the Royal Navy in the 18th century and accompanied Captain James Cook in his discoveries in the Pacific Ocean.-History:...

, a veteran of Cook's first voyage, and Captain James King. Cook's account of his third and final voyage was completed upon their return by King.

David Samwell, who sailed with Cook on the Resolution, wrote of him:
He was a modest man, and rather bashful; of an agreeable lively conversation, sensible and intelligent. In temper he was somewhat hasty, but of a disposition the most friendly, benevolent and humane. His person was above six feet high: and, though a good looking man, he was plain both in dress and appearance. His face was full of expression: his nose extremely well shaped: his eyes which were small and of a brown cast, were quick and piercing; his eyebrows prominent, which gave his countenance altogether an air of austerity.

Legacy


Navigation and science


Cook's 12 years sailing around the Pacific Ocean contributed much to European knowledge of the area. Several islands such as Sandwich Islands
Hawaiian Islands
The Hawaiian Islands are an archipelago of eight major islands, several atolls, numerous smaller islets, and undersea seamounts in the North Pacific Ocean, extending some 1,500 miles from the island of Hawaii in the south to northernmost Kure Atoll...

 (Hawaii) were encountered for the first time by Europeans, and his more accurate navigation
Navigation
Navigation is the process of monitoring and controlling the movement of a craft or vehicle from one place to another. It is also the term of art used for the specialized knowledge used by navigators to perform navigation tasks...

al charting of large areas of the Pacific was a major achievement.

To create accurate maps, latitude
Latitude
In geography, the latitude of a location on the Earth is the angular distance of that location south or north of the Equator. The latitude is an angle, and is usually measured in degrees . The equator has a latitude of 0°, the North pole has a latitude of 90° north , and the South pole has a...

 and longitude
Longitude
Longitude is a geographic coordinate that specifies the east-west position of a point on the Earth's surface. It is an angular measurement, usually expressed in degrees, minutes and seconds, and denoted by the Greek letter lambda ....

 need to be known. Navigator
Navigator
A navigator is the person on board a ship or aircraft responsible for its navigation. The navigator's primary responsibility is to be aware of ship or aircraft position at all times. Responsibilities include planning the journey, advising the Captain or aircraft Commander of estimated timing to...

s had been able to work out latitude accurately for centuries by measuring the angle of the sun
Sun
The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System. It is almost perfectly spherical and consists of hot plasma interwoven with magnetic fields...

 or a star above the horizon with an instrument such as a backstaff
Backstaff
The backstaff or back-quadrant is a navigational instrument that was used to measure the altitude of a celestial body, in particular the sun or moon...

 or quadrant
Quadrant (instrument)
A quadrant is an instrument that is used to measure angles up to 90°. It was originally proposed by Ptolemy as a better kind of astrolabe. Several different variations of the instrument were later produced by medieval Muslim astronomers.-Types of quadrants:...

. Longitude was more difficult to measure accurately because it requires precise knowledge of the time difference between points on the surface of the earth. The Earth turns a full 360 degrees
Degree (angle)
A degree , usually denoted by ° , is a measurement of plane angle, representing 1⁄360 of a full rotation; one degree is equivalent to π/180 radians...

 relative to the sun each day. Thus longitude corresponds to time: 15 degrees every hour, or 1 degree every 4 minutes.

Cook gathered accurate longitude
Longitude
Longitude is a geographic coordinate that specifies the east-west position of a point on the Earth's surface. It is an angular measurement, usually expressed in degrees, minutes and seconds, and denoted by the Greek letter lambda ....

 measurements during his first voyage due to his navigational skills, the help of astronomer Charles Green
Charles Green (astronomer)
Charles Green was a British astronomer, noted for his assignment by the Royal Society in 1768 to the expedition sent to the Pacific Ocean in order to observe the transit of Venus and the transit of Mercury, aboard James Cook's Endeavour.A farmer's son, he became assistant to the Astronomer Royal...

 and by using the newly published Nautical Almanac
The Nautical Almanac
The Nautical Almanac has been the familiar name for a series of official British almanacs published under various titles since the first issue of The Nautical Almanac and Astronomical Ephemeris, for 1767: this was the first nautical almanac ever to contain data dedicated to the convenient...

 tables, via the lunar distance
Lunar distance (navigation)
In celestial navigation, lunar distance is the angle between the Moon and another celestial body. A navigator can use a lunar distance and a nautical almanac to calculate Greenwich time...

 method—measuring the angular distance from the moon
Moon
The Moon is Earth's only known natural satellite,There are a number of near-Earth asteroids including 3753 Cruithne that are co-orbital with Earth: their orbits bring them close to Earth for periods of time but then alter in the long term . These are quasi-satellites and not true moons. For more...

 to either the sun during daytime or one of eight bright stars during night-time to determine the time at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich
Royal Observatory, Greenwich
The Royal Observatory, Greenwich , in London, England played a major role in the history of astronomy and navigation, and is best known as the location of the prime meridian...

, and comparing that to his local time determined via the altitude of the sun, moon, or stars. On his second voyage Cook used the K1 chronometer made by Larcum Kendall
Larcum Kendall
Larcum Kendall was a British watchmaker.-Commission:The Board of Longitude asked Kendall to copy and develop John Harrison's ingenious fourth model of a clock useful for navigation at sea...

, which was the shape of a large pocket watch
Pocket watch
A pocket watch is a watch that is made to be carried in a pocket, as opposed to a wristwatch, which is strapped to the wrist. They were the most common type of watch from their development in the 16th century until wristwatches became popular after World War I during which a transitional design,...

, 5 inches (12.7 cm) in diameter. It was a copy of the H4 clock made by John Harrison
John Harrison
John Harrison was a self-educated English clockmaker. He invented the marine chronometer, a long-sought device in solving the problem of establishing the East-West position or longitude of a ship at sea, thus revolutionising and extending the possibility of safe long distance sea travel in the Age...

, which proved to be the first to keep accurate time at sea when used on the ship Deptford's journey to Jamaica
Jamaica
Jamaica is an island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length, up to in width and 10,990 square kilometres in area. It is situated in the Caribbean Sea, about south of Cuba, and west of Hispaniola, the island harbouring the nation-states Haiti and the Dominican Republic...

, 1761–62.

Cook succeeded in circumnavigating the world on his first voyage without losing a single man to scurvy
Scurvy
Scurvy is a disease resulting from a deficiency of vitamin C, which is required for the synthesis of collagen in humans. The chemical name for vitamin C, ascorbic acid, is derived from the Latin name of scurvy, scorbutus, which also provides the adjective scorbutic...

, an unusual accomplishment at the time. He tested several preventive measures but the most important was frequent replenishment of fresh food. It was for presenting a paper on this aspect of the voyage to the Royal Society that he was presented with the Copley Medal
Copley Medal
The Copley Medal is an award given by the Royal Society of London for "outstanding achievements in research in any branch of science, and alternates between the physical sciences and the biological sciences"...

 in 1776. Ever the observer, Cook was the first European to have extensive contact with various people of the Pacific. He correctly concluded there was a relationship among all the people in the Pacific, despite their being separated by thousands of miles of ocean (see Malayo-Polynesian languages
Malayo-Polynesian languages
The Malayo-Polynesian languages are a subgroup of the Austronesian languages, with approximately 385.5 million speakers. These are widely dispersed throughout the island nations of Southeast Asia and the Pacific Ocean, with a smaller number in continental Asia...

). Cook came up with the theory that Polynesians originated from Asia, which was later proved to be correct by scientist Bryan Sykes
Bryan Sykes
Bryan Sykes is a former Professor of Human Genetics at the University of Oxford and a current Fellow of Wolfson College.Sykes published the first report on retrieving DNA from ancient bone...

. In New Zealand the coming of Cook is often used to signify the onset of colonisation.

Cook was accompanied on his voyages by many scientists, whose observations and discoveries added to the importance of the voyages. Joseph Banks
Joseph Banks
Sir Joseph Banks, 1st Baronet, GCB, PRS was an English naturalist, botanist and patron of the natural sciences. He took part in Captain James Cook's first great voyage . Banks is credited with the introduction to the Western world of eucalyptus, acacia, mimosa and the genus named after him,...

, a botanist, went on the first voyage along with fellow botanist Daniel Solander
Daniel Solander
Daniel Carlsson Solander or Daniel Charles Solander was a Swedish naturalist and an apostle of Carl Linnaeus. Solander was the first university educated scientist to set foot on Australian soil.-Biography:...

 from Sweden. Between them they collected over 3,000 plant species. Banks became one of the strongest promoters of the settlement of Australia by the British, based on his own personal observations.

There were also several artists on the first voyage. Sydney Parkinson was involved in many of the drawings, completing 264 drawings before his death near the end of the voyage. They were of immense scientific value to British botanists. Cook's second expedition included the artist William Hodges
William Hodges
William Hodges RA was an English painter. He was a member of James Cook's second voyage to the Pacific Ocean, and is best known for the sketches and paintings of locations he visited on that voyage, including Table Bay, Tahiti, Easter Island, and the Antarctic.Hodges was born in London. He was a...

, who produced notable landscape painting
Landscape art
Landscape art is a term that covers the depiction of natural scenery such as mountains, valleys, trees, rivers, and forests, and especially art where the main subject is a wide view, with its elements arranged into a coherent composition. In other works landscape backgrounds for figures can still...

s of Tahiti
Tahiti
Tahiti is the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia, located in the archipelago of the Society Islands in the southern Pacific Ocean. It is the economic, cultural and political centre of French Polynesia. The island was formed from volcanic activity and is high and mountainous...

, Easter Island
Easter Island
Easter Island is a Polynesian island in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, at the southeasternmost point of the Polynesian triangle. A special territory of Chile that was annexed in 1888, Easter Island is famous for its 887 extant monumental statues, called moai, created by the early Rapanui people...

, and other locations.

A number of the junior officers who served under Cook went on to distinctive accomplishments of their own. William Bligh
William Bligh
Vice Admiral William Bligh FRS RN was an officer of the British Royal Navy and a colonial administrator. A notorious mutiny occurred during his command of HMAV Bounty in 1789; Bligh and his loyal men made a remarkable voyage to Timor, after being set adrift in the Bounty's launch by the mutineers...

, Cook's sailing master, was given command of HMS Bounty
HMS Bounty
HMS Bounty , famous as the scene of the Mutiny on the Bounty on 28 April 1789, was originally a three-masted cargo ship, the Bethia, purchased by the British Admiralty, then modified and commissioned as His Majesty's Armed Vessel the...

 in 1787 to sail to Tahiti and return with breadfruit
Breadfruit
Breadfruit is a species of flowering tree in the mulberry family, Moraceae, growing throughout Southeast Asia and most Pacific Ocean islands...

. Bligh is most known for the mutiny
Mutiny
Mutiny is a conspiracy among members of a group of similarly situated individuals to openly oppose, change or overthrow an authority to which they are subject...

 of his crew
Mutiny on the Bounty
The mutiny on the Bounty was a mutiny that occurred aboard the British Royal Navy ship HMS Bounty on 28 April 1789, and has been commemorated by several books, films, and popular songs, many of which take considerable liberties with the facts. The mutiny was led by Fletcher Christian against the...

 which resulted in his being set adrift in 1789. He later became governor of New South Wales
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state of :Australia, located in the east of the country. It is bordered by Queensland, Victoria and South Australia to the north, south and west respectively. To the east, the state is bordered by the Tasman Sea, which forms part of the Pacific Ocean. New South Wales...

, where he was subject of another mutiny
Rum Rebellion
The Rum Rebellion of 1808 was the only successful armed takeover of government in Australia's history. The Governor of New South Wales, William Bligh, was deposed by the New South Wales Corps under the command of Major George Johnston, working closely with John Macarthur, on 26 January 1808, 20...

—the only successful armed takeover of an Australian colonial government. George Vancouver
George Vancouver
Captain George Vancouver RN was an English officer of the British Royal Navy, best known for his 1791-95 expedition, which explored and charted North America's northwestern Pacific Coast regions, including the coasts of contemporary Alaska, British Columbia, Washington and Oregon...

, one of Cook's midshipmen
Midshipman
A midshipman is an officer cadet, or a commissioned officer of the lowest rank, in the Royal Navy, United States Navy, and many Commonwealth navies. Commonwealth countries which use the rank include Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Kenya...

, later led a voyage of exploration to the Pacific Coast of North America
Vancouver Expedition
The Vancouver Expedition was a four-and-a-half-year voyage of exploration and diplomacy, commanded by Captain George Vancouver. The expedition circumnavigated the globe, touched five continents and changed the course of history for the indigenous nations and several European empires and their...

 from 1791 to 1794. In honour of his former commander, Vancouver's new ship was also christened Discovery
HMS Discovery (1789)
HMS Discovery was a Royal Navy ship launched in 1789 and best known as the lead ship in George Vancouver's exploration of the west coast of North America in his famous 1791-1795 expedition. She was converted to a bomb vessel in 1798 and participated in the Battle of Copenhagen. Thereafter she...

. George Dixon sailed under Cook on his third expedition, and later commanded an expedition of his own.

His contributions to knowledge were internationally recognised during his lifetime. In 1779, while the American colonies were at war with Britain in their war for independence, Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin
Dr. Benjamin Franklin was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. A noted polymath, Franklin was a leading author, printer, political theorist, politician, postmaster, scientist, musician, inventor, satirist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat...

 wrote to captains of American warships at sea, recommending that if they came into contact with Cook's vessel, they were to:
...not consider her an enemy, nor suffer any plunder to be made of the effects contained in her, nor obstruct her immediate return to England by detaining her or sending her into any other part of Europe or to America; but that you treat the said Captain Cook and his people with all civility and kindness, . . . as common friends to mankind.


Unknown to Franklin, Cook had met his death a month before this "passport" was written.

Debates


Cook's voyages took place in the midst of 18th century debates about the ennobling or corrupting influence of Western civilisation, yet examination of Cook's journals reveal that he was not much interested in the idea of the noble savage
Noble savage
The term noble savage , expresses the concept an idealized indigene, outsider , and refers to the literary stock character of the same...

. When, in the 19th century, there was discussion of the motives of navigators and explorers, Joseph Conrad
Joseph Conrad
Joseph Conrad was a Polish-born English novelist.Conrad is regarded as one of the great novelists in English, although he did not speak the language fluently until he was in his twenties...

 contrasted Cook's "scientific" motives with the "acquisitive" motives of earlier generations of explorers. Yet the costs for Cook's three voyages were borne by the British government within a framework of objectives that had to stand up to taxpayer scrutiny and Cook often claimed territories for the British crown. In the 20th century, there are those who believe, with Moorehead
Alan Moorehead
Alan McCrae Moorehead OBE was a war correspondent and author of popular histories, most notably two books on the nineteenth-century exploration of the Nile, The White Nile and The Blue Nile . Australian-born, he lived in England, and Italy, from 1937.-Biography:Alan Moorehead was born in...

, whose book The Fatal Impact (1966) that Western civilisation brought a depressing train of consequences, including venereal disease, alcohol and firearms. Later in the century, Cook's achievements, and in particular, the circumstances surrounding his death have become the subject of scholarly debate. Gananath Obeyesekere
Gananath Obeyesekere
Gananath Obeyesekere is Emeritus Professor of Anthropology at Princeton University and has done much work in his home country of Sri Lanka. He completed a B.A. in English at the University of Ceylon, Peradeniya, followed by an M.A. and Ph.D at the University of Washington...

 in The Apotheosis Of Captain Cook : European Mythmaking In The Pacific, (1992), and Marshall Sahlins
Marshall Sahlins
Marshall David Sahlins is a prominent American anthropologist. He received both a Bachelors and Masters degree at the University of Michigan where he studied with Leslie White, and earned his Ph.D. at Columbia University in 1954 where his main intellectual influences included Karl Polanyi and...

 in How "Natives" Think: About Captain Cook, for Example (1995) disagree about the interpretation of the Hawaiian response to Cook as documented in the journals of Cook and his crew.

Memorials



A US coin, the 1928 Hawaiian Sesquicentennial half dollar
Half dollar (United States coin)
Half dollar coins have been produced nearly every year since the inception of the United States Mint in 1794. Sometimes referred to as the fifty-cent piece, the only U.S. coin that has been minted more consistently is the cent.-Circulation:...

 bears an image of Cook. Minted during the celebration marking the 150th anniversary of his discovery of the islands, its low mintage (10,008) has made this example of Early United States commemorative coins
Early United States commemorative coins
The Early United States commemorative coins traditionally begins with the 1892 Colombian Half dollar and extends through the 1954 Booker T. Washington issue. The profits from the sale of commemorative coins was often used to fund a specific project...

 both scarce and expensive. The site where he was killed in Hawaii
Kealakekua Bay
Kealakekua Bay is located on the Kona coast of the island of Hawaii about south of Kailua-Kona.Settled over a thousand years ago, the surrounding area contains many archeological and historical sites such as religious temples, and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places listings on...

 is marked by a white obelisk, built in 1874, and about 25 square feet (2.3 m²) of land around it is chained off. This land, though in Hawaii, has been given to the United Kingdom. Therefore, the site is officially a part of the UK. A nearby town is named Captain Cook, Hawaii as well as several businesses. The Apollo 15
Apollo 15
Apollo 15 was the ninth manned mission in the American Apollo space program, the fourth to land on the Moon and the eighth successful manned mission. It was the first of what were termed "J missions", long duration stays on the Moon with a greater focus on science than had been possible on previous...

 command module Endeavour was named after Cook's ship, HMS Endeavour
HMS Endeavour
HMS Endeavour may refer to one of the following ships:In the Royal Navy:, a 36-gun ship purchased in 1652 and sold in 1656, a 4-gun bomb vessel purchased in 1694 and sold in 1696, a fire ship purchased in 1694 and sold in 1696, a storeship hoy purchased in 1694 and sold in 1705, a storeship...

, as is the space shuttle Endeavour
Space Shuttle Endeavour
Space Shuttle Endeavour is one of the retired orbiters of the Space Shuttle program of NASA, the space agency of the United States. Endeavour was the fifth and final spaceworthy NASA space shuttle to be built, constructed as a replacement for Challenger...

. Another shuttle, Discovery
Space Shuttle Discovery
Space Shuttle Discovery is one of the retired orbiters of the Space Shuttle program of NASA, the space agency of the United States, and was operational from its maiden flight, STS-41-D on August 30, 1984, until its final landing during STS-133 on March 9, 2011...

, is named after Cook's HMS Discovery
HMS Discovery (1774)
HMS Discovery was the consort ship of James Cook's third expedition to the Pacific Ocean in 1776 - 1780. Like Cook's other ships, Discovery was a Whitby-built collier of 298 tons, originally named Diligence when she was built in 1774. Originally a brig, Cook had her changed to a full rigged ship...

.

The first tertiary education institution in North Queensland, Australia was named after him, with James Cook University
James Cook University
James Cook University is a public university based in Townsville, Queensland, Australia. The university has two Australian campuses, located in Townsville and Cairns respectively, and an international campus in Singapore. JCU is the second oldest university in Queensland—proclaimed in 1970—and the...

 opening in Townsville in 1970. In Australian rhyming slang the expression "Captain Cook" means "look". Numerous institutions, landmarks and place names reflect the importance of Cook's contribution to knowledge of geography. These include the Cook Islands
Cook Islands
The Cook Islands is a self-governing parliamentary democracy in the South Pacific Ocean in free association with New Zealand...

, the Cook Strait
Cook Strait
Cook Strait is the strait between the North and South Islands of New Zealand. It connects the Tasman Sea on the west with the South Pacific Ocean on the east....

, Cook Inlet
Cook Inlet
Cook Inlet stretches from the Gulf of Alaska to Anchorage in south-central Alaska. Cook Inlet branches into the Knik Arm and Turnagain Arm at its northern end, almost surrounding Anchorage....

, and the Cook crater
Cook (crater)
Cook is a lunar crater that lies in the western part of the Mare Fecunditatis, just to the southeast of the prominent crater Colombo. To the southwest is Monge....

 on the Moon. Aoraki/Mount Cook
Aoraki/Mount Cook
Aoraki / Mount Cook is the highest mountain in New Zealand, reaching .It lies in the Southern Alps, the mountain range which runs the length of the South Island. A popular tourist destination, it is also a favourite challenge for mountain climbers...

, the highest summit in New Zealand, is named for him. Another Mount Cook
Mount Cook (Saint Elias Mountains)
Mount Cook is a high peak on the Yukon Territory-Alaska border, in the Saint Elias Mountains of North America. It is approximately 15 miles southwest of Mount Vancouver and 35 miles east-southeast of Mount Saint Elias. It forms one of the corners of the jagged border, which is defined to run in...

 is on the border between the US state of Alaska
Alaska
Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area. It is situated in the northwest extremity of the North American continent, with Canada to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, with Russia further west across the Bering Strait...

 and the Canadian Yukon
Yukon
Yukon is the westernmost and smallest of Canada's three federal territories. It was named after the Yukon River. The word Yukon means "Great River" in Gwich’in....

 Territory, and is designated Boundary Peak 182 as one of the official Boundary Peaks of the Hay–Herbert Treaty.
One of the earliest monuments to Cook in the United Kingdom is located at The Vache
The Vache
The Vache is an estate near Chalfont St. Giles in Buckinghamshire.The Vache was the family seat of the Fleetwood family. In 1660 George Fleetwood was found guilty of the regicide of King Charles I in January 1649, and although his life was spared, his estate of The Vache was confiscated and given...

, where it was erected in 1780 by Admiral Hugh Palliser
Hugh Palliser
Admiral Sir Hugh Palliser, 1st Baronet was an officer of the British Royal Navy during the Seven Years' War and the American Revolutionary War...

, a contemporary of Cook and one time owner of the estate. A huge obelisk was built in 1827 as a monument to Cook on Easby Moor
Easby Moor
Easby Moor is a hill in the North York Moors at above sea level, in the national park in North Yorkshire, England. It overlooks the village of Great Ayton....

 overlooking his boyhood village of Great Ayton
Great Ayton
Great Ayton is a village and civil parish in the Hambleton district of North Yorkshire on the edge of the North York Moors in England. The name Great Ayton is thought to derive from Ea-tun, tun meaning farm and 'ea' meaning river. It has a population of 4,570....

. In 1978, on the 250th anniversary of Cook's birth, at the site of his birthplace in Marton
Marton, Middlesbrough
Marton — officially Marton-in-Cleveland — was a village in the North Riding of Yorkshire, which is now within the town boundaries of Middlesbrough, in the borough of Middlesbrough and the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire, England. Originally, the parish of Marton extended down to the River...

, the Captain Cook Birthplace Museum
Captain Cook Birthplace Museum
Captain Cook Birthplace Museum is a free-entry public museum located in Stewart Park in Marton, Middlesbrough within the borough of Middlesbrough and the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire, England....

, which is located within Stewart Park, was opened. A granite vase just to the south of the museum marks the approximate spot where he was born. Tributes also abound in post-industrial Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough is a large town situated on the south bank of the River Tees in north east England, that sits within the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire...

, and include a primary school, shopping square and the Bottle 'O Notes a public artwork by Claes Oldenburg
Claes Oldenburg
Claes Oldenburg is a Swedish sculptor, best known for his public art installations typically featuring very large replicas of everyday objects...

 erected in the town's Central Gardens in 1993. Also named after Cook is the James Cook University Hospital
James Cook University Hospital
The James Cook University Hospital is a 1010 bed major tertiary referral hospital and district general hospital in Middlesbrough, England, lying on Marton Road, a major route into the centre of Middlesbrough . It forms part of the South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, along with the Friarage...

, a major teaching hospital opened in 2003.
The Royal Research Ship RRS James Cook
RRS James Cook
The RRS James Cook is a British Royal Research Ship operated by the Natural Environment Research Council . She was built in 2006 to replace the ageing RRS Charles Darwin with funds from Britain's NERC and the DTI's Large Scientific Facilities Fund...

 was built in 2006 to replace the RRS Charles Darwin
RRS Charles Darwin
The RRS Charles Darwin was a Royal Research Ship belonging to the British Natural Environment Research Council. Since 2006, she has been the geophysical survey vessel, RV Ocean Researcher,-History:...

 in the UK's Royal Research Fleet and Stepney Historical Trust has placed a plaque on Free Trade Wharf in the Highway, Shadwell to commemorate his life in the East End of London.

See also

  • Australian places named by James Cook
    Australian places named by James Cook
    This is a list of Australian places named by James Cook. James Cook was the first explorer to chart most of the eastern Australian coast, one of the last major coastlines in the world unknown to Europeans at the time...

  • European and American voyages of scientific exploration
    European and American voyages of scientific exploration
    The era of European and American voyages of scientific exploration followed the Age of Discovery and were inspired by a new confidence in science and reason that arose in the Age of Enlightenment...

  • Exploration of the Pacific
    Exploration of the Pacific
    Exploration of the Pacific: Polynesians reached nearly all the Pacific islands by about 1200AD. In 1521 Magellan crossed the Pacific. For the next 250 years Europeans explored various parts of the Ocean, but the only significant trade was along both coasts and the Manila galleons that crossed from...


Further reading

  • Richardson, Brian. (2005) Longitude and Empire: How Captain Cook's Voyages Changed the World University of British Columbia Press. ISBN 0774811900.
  • Sydney Daily Telegraph (1970) Captain Cook: His Artists — His Voyages The Sydney Daily Telegraph Portfolio of Original Works by Artists who sailed with Captain Cook. Australian Consolidated Press, Sydney.
  • Thomas, Nicholas (2003) The Extraordinary Voyages of Captain James Cook. Walker & Co., New York. ISBN 0802714129
  • Villiers, Alan John
    Alan Villiers
    Captain Alan John Villiers was an author, adventurer, photographer and Master Mariner.Born in Melbourne, Australia, he first went to sea at age 15 and sailed all the world's oceans on board traditionally rigged vessels, including the full rigged ship Joseph Conrad...

    , (1903) Captain James Cook Newport Beach, CA : Books on Tape, 1983.

External links



Biographical dictionaries

  • http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A010231b.htm'Cook, James (1728–1779)', Australian Dictionary of Biography
    Australian Dictionary of Biography
    The Australian Dictionary of Biography is a national, co-operative enterprise, founded and maintained by the Australian National University to produce authoritative biographical articles on eminent people in Australia's history....

    , Volume 1, Melbourne University Press
    Melbourne University Publishing
    Melbourne University Publishing is the book publishing arm of the University of Melbourne .MUP was founded in 1922 as Melbourne University Press to sell books and stationery to students, and then began publishing books itself...

    , 1966, pp 243–244]
  • Biography at the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online from the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography
    Dictionary of New Zealand Biography
    The Dictionary of New Zealand Biography contains biographies for over 3,000 New Zealanders. It is available in both English and Maori. All volumes of the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography are available online....


Journals


Collections and museums