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1764 Patagonian Giants

1764 Patagonian Giants

C011/0873

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Credit

PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

A copperplate engraving inspired from Commodore Byron's "An account of a Voyage Round the World" (1767) recording his meeting around 1764 with the 'giants' of Patagonia. Since the time of Magellan there had been rumours that the Patagonians were giants, but the account of Byron re-ignited the popular fascination by describing men who were head and shoulders taller than his tallest men. Later explorers would discover this was an exaggeration - they were at most 6 feet six inches - though that is still large for the time!.

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