Captain James Cook
From humble beginnings to national hero, Captain James Cook is one of history's best known and most controversial explorers. Read all about his life, from expertly charting the coasts of New Zealand and Australia and crossing the Antarctic Circle, to his fatal end in Hawaii.
William Bligh was an officer in the Royal Navy and was the victim of a mutiny on his ship, the Bounty, in 1789.
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.
Follow the key events in Captain Cook’s life of adventure from a simple start to global fame and a grizzly death.
Views in the South Seas... The Resolution beating through the ice with the Discovery in the most eminent danger in the distance.jpg
All of Cook's remarkable discoveries were undertaken in relatively humble ships designed for hauling coal.
Science and secret missions in the South Seas; innovations, discoveries and derring do. Cook’s first great voyage quickly became the stuff of legend.
A View of Cape Stephens in Cook's Straits with Waterspout
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?
The Death of Captain James Cook by the Indians of Owhyee, one of the Sandwich Islands.jpg
While Cook fails to find the North-West Passage, it is his discovery of Hawaii that will prove to be his undoing.
'Longitude Lunatics' from 'The Rake's Progress_tile.jpg
Despite trailblazers like Captain Cook, the new techniques for navigation were slow to catch on.
The artist William Hodges accompanied Captain Cook on his second voyage to the Pacific in 1772-74.
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.