19 SEP 2022

William Dampier

Explorer, pirate, privateer, navigator, and naturalist

We look at the life of one of the most amazing but forgotten men of the 1600s, William Dampier. Ever curious he was an explorer, navigator, naturalist, writer and so much more. The author of A New Voyage Around the World, his accounts opened the world to the public. Never before had they read such detailed descriptions of exotic locations beyond their shores.

Travelling the world

From stories of raids on Spanish settlements in the Pacific to first setting step on the shores of Australia his vivid accounts were a world first. He inspired Charles Darwin, Daniel Defoe, Jonathan Swift, Alexander von Humboldt and many more. Sadly his more lawless acts would lead him, in the eyes of some, to be little more than a common pirate but we hope to show you just how wrong this is.

It is not easy to name another voyager or traveller who has given more useful information to the world; to whom the merchant and mariner are so much indebted; or who has communicated his information in a more unembarrassed and intelligible manner

Admiral James Burney

Further reading


This transcript is automatically generated so may contain errors.