History of Australia
South Australia

Who discovered Australia?

Top Answer
User Avatar
Wiki User
Answered 2015-06-09 03:49:39

There is no straightforward answer to this question.

Australian Aborigines made it to Australia anywhere between 6,000 and 50,000 years ago. No written records exist, so one can only speculate on when they first arrived, and who was the first of them.

The Asian people visited the northern coast regularly for hundreds of years before Europeans set foot on the continent, to collect sea-slugs (trepang), a valued delicacy in Asia. Again, there is no record of the very first man or woman to step foot on the continent.

It is believed that the Portuguese were the first to sight the Australian continent, but there are no records within Portugal itself to substantiate the claim. The source for this claim are the Dieppe Maps, which date between 1542 and 1587, and which were drawn up by a group of French cartographers using a Portuguese source. These maps name a large land mass believed to be the Australian continent as Java-la-Grande. There is some speculation that the maps, not being to scale, actually represent an exaggerated western Java, possibly even Vietnam.

Willem Jansz/Janszoon was a Dutchman who was seeking new trade routes and trade associates. Commanding the Duyfken, he became the first recorded European to step foot on Australia's shores on the western shore of Cape York Peninsula, on 26 February 1606. However, he believed the Cape to be part of New Guinea, from whence he crossed the Arafura Sea, so he did not record Australia as being a separate, new continent.

In 1616, Dutch sea-captain Dirk Hartog sailed too far whilst trying out Henderik Brouwer's recently discovered route from the Cape of Good Hope to Batavia, via the Roaring Forties. Reaching the western coast of Australia, he landed at Cape Inscription in Shark Bay on 25 October 1616. His is the first known record of a European visiting Western Australia's shores.

The first Englishman to visit Australia was William Dampier, in 1688.

James Cook (not yet a captain) charted the eastern coast of Australia and claimed it in the name of the British in 1770, calling it New South Wales. He charted the east coast between April and August of that year. For this reason, Cook is often wrongly credited with discovering Australia.

User Avatar

Your Answer

Still Have Questions?

Related Questions

Where was the emu discovered?

Being native to Australia alone, the emu was discovered in Australia.

Which South American explorer discovered Australia?

No South American explorer discovered Australia.To see who really discovered Australia, see the related question below.

Who discovered Australia and claimed it?

Captain James Cook claimed and discovered Australia in 1779.

When where gum trees discovered?

When we discovered Australia.

Did the Dutch discover Australia?

The chinese were said to have discovered Australia and everybody thinks that Captian Cook discovered it but really the first people to discover Australia were the Dutch unless you incude the Aborigines in which case they discovered Australia first.

Why is Australia a commonwealth?

Because Australia was discovered by the British.

What was discovered in Australia in 1851?

Australia's first payable gold was officially discovered in Australia in May 1851.

Who discovered Australia before European settlement?

The aboriginals because they walked from Asia across Landbridges and discovered Australia.

When and by whom was Australia discoverd?

caption cooks discovered Australia

He was captain and discovered the eastern coast of Australia?

James Cook was a Lieutenant when he charted (not discovered) the east coast of Australia in 1770.

Did New Zealand discover Australia?

No, Australia discovered New Zealand.

What did the person who discovered Australia name it?

Dirk Hartog discovered the west coast of Australia in 1616 and called it New Holland. Lieutenant James Cook discovered the east coast of Australia in 1770 and called it New South Wales.

When did christopher Columbus discover Australia?

he never discovered australia, he mearly brought tobacco to australia

When was bauxite discovered in Australia?

Bauxite was discovered in 1950 at Gove, Northern Territory.

What ship discovered australia?

The ship that discovered Australia was called the Duyfken and came from Holland. This Dutch vessel sighted Australia's coast in 1606.

What was discovered in 1851 which led to a rapid increase in free men immigrating to Australia?

1851 was the year that the first payable gold was discovered in Australia.

Who is the explorer who discovered most of Australia in 1770?

No explorer discovered most of Australia in 1770. Australia had been "discovered" over 150 years earlier by the Dutch. However, Lieutenant James Cook (later Captain) charted the east coast in 1770.

What was the first dinosaur in Australia discovered?

The first dinosaur discovered in Australia was a small theropod. On 7 May 1903, geologist William Ferguson discovered the claw of the theropod at Cape Paterson in Victoria.

What put Australia on the map?

When it was discovered by Europeans.

Who discovered botany bay in Australia?

captainJames cook discoverd botany bay in Australia

Who discovered Australia in 1770?

No-one "discovered" Australia in 1770. Australia had been "discovered" over 150 years earlier by the Dutch. However, Lieutenant James Cook (later Captain) charted the east coast in 1770. He was preceded by numerous Dutch explorers, and he wa snot even the first Englishman to land in Australia.

Where was otzi the iceman discovered?

Otzi was discovered in the mountains on the border between Australia Austria and Italy.

Still have questions?

Trending Questions
Do potatoes have genders? Asked By Wiki User
Why is Vanna White so skinny? Asked By Wiki User
How many 20 go into 200? Asked By Wiki User
What times what equals 6? Asked By Wiki User
Previously Viewed
Who discovered Australia? Asked By Wiki User
Unanswered Questions
Does arsenio hall have ms? Asked By Wiki User