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Quadruped named Kangaroo found on the coast of New Holland

Date: 1774
Dimensions:
Overall: 202 x 161 mm
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Purchased with USA Bicentennial Gift funds
Classification:Art
Object Name: Engraving
Object No: 00008520

User Terms

    Description
    This French engraving 'Quadrupede nommé Kanguroo, trouvé sur la côte de la N.le Hollande' by Godefroi is after a painting by George Stubbs. A kangaroo is depicted sitting on a rock with tree studded hills in the background.

    This engraving is believed to be from Volume 4 of a French translation of John Hawkesworth's popular work - An Account of the Voyages Undertaken by the order of His present Majesty, for Making Discoveries in the Southern Hemisphere, and Successively Performed by Commodore Byron, Captain Wallis, Captain Carteret, and Captain Cook - published in England in 1773, and first published in France in 1774.
    SignificanceThis engraving is a rare early European depiction of the Australian kangaroo.
    HistoryGeorge Stubbs, a famous 18th century oil painter working in London, was commissioned by Sir Joseph Banks to paint the first kangaroo brought to England - a stuffed skin collected during Captain Cook's first voyage to the Pacific in 1768-1771.

    James Cook's first voyage of exploration to the Pacific was in command of HMB ENDEAVOUR in 1768-1771. The Royal Society of London petitioned King George III for an expedition to view the transit of Venus across the sun at Tahiti on 3 June 1769. The British were also interested in exploring the Pacific Ocean and its unknown islands.

    During the expedition Cook sailed to Tahiti and then on to New Zealand as charted by Abel Tasman in 1642. After mapping both the north and south islands, he started the journey home. It was during this passage that Cook first approached eastern Australia and attempted to land on 28 April 1770. Encountering rough surf Cook sailed ENDEAVOUR round to a calmer bay (Botany Bay) where on 29 April 1770 he and his crew landed on Australian soil and made some of the first drawings and collections of Australian flora and fauna.

    On board was the naturalist and patron Sir Joseph Banks and his accompaniment of eight staff including the naturalists Daniel Solander and H D Sporing, the artists Alexander Buchan and Sydney Parkinson, James Roberts, Peter Briscoe and the servants Thomas Richmond and George Dorlton. Equipped with a large fortune and a wealth of natural history experience Banks was recommended to the British Admiralty for the expedition by the Royal Society. Between 1768 and 1771 Banks with his staff collected large amounts of specimens including seeds, shells, insects, bottled specimens and animals. Many of the pieces he took back to England and they formed an extensive natural history collection.

    Additional Titles

    Primary title: "Quadrupede nomme KANGUROO trouve sur la Cote de la Nle. Hollande", TAKEN FROM THE FRENCH EDITION OF COOK, VOLUME 4, MONOCHROME ENGRAVING DEPICTS A KANGAROO SITTING ON A ROCK WITH TREE STUDDED HILLS IN THE BACKGROUND, COPPER ENGRAVING ON PAPER, MOUNT

    Web title: Quadruped named Kangaroo found on the coast of New Holland

    Related People
    Engraver: Godefroi

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