William Dampier, English explorer

William Dampier, English explorer

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Credit: PAUL D STEWART/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: William Dampier (1651-1715), English explorer, naturalist and buccaneer, holding a copy of his 'Dampier's Voyages' (A New Voyage Round the World, 1697). Dampier was famously described as 'a pirate of exquisite mind' and became a fashionable friend of the Royal Society after his accounts of his explorations were published. As a sailor and buccaneer he was the first man to go three times around the world. He took careful notes of the natural history he saw, becoming the first man to describe many features of Australia, New Guinea and the Galapagos islands. Darwin much later referred to him as 'dear old Dampier' being so familiar with his accounts. This is a posthumous 1787 copperplate engraving by Charles Sherwin (with later hand colouring), after the 1698 painting by T. Murray.

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