Captain James Cook

When Captain Cook returned from his first voyage he brought with him the term ‘tattoo’ if not the practice itself.

Captain James Cook came out of retirement to look for the North-West Passage in 1776. It was to be his last expedition and he never returned home.

The artist William Hodges accompanied Captain Cook on his second voyage to the Pacific in 1772-74. 

Despite trailblazers like Captain Cook, the new techniques for navigation were slow to catch on.

While Cook fails to find the North-West Passage, it is his discovery of Hawaii that will prove to be his undoing.

Polite society was thrilling to the idea of an undiscovered continent in the south. Was it even there and what would count as proof if it didn’t exist?

Science and secret missions in the South Seas; innovations, discoveries and derring do. Cook’s first great voyage quickly became the stuff of legend.

Follow the key events in Captain Cook’s life of adventure from a simple start to global fame and a grizzly death.

No one before (and few since) rose so far and so fast from a simple rural background to national fame. Cook was marked for greatness from the outset.