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Sir Joseph Banks Bt. President, F.R.S.

Sir Joseph Banks Bt. President, F.R.S.
Sir Joseph Banks, who accompanied Cook on his first voyage.
© National Maritime Museum, London
Description: Banks was President of the Royal Society, and naturalist and patron of the sciences. When the Royal Society was successful in initiating Captain Cook's 1768 expedition to Tahiti for astronomical observations, Banks obtained permission from the Admiralty to join the venture. After Cook's tragic death in 1779, the Government and Admiralty saw Banks as the leading authority on exploration. Before any expeditions were planned, Sir Joseph was always consulted. He was the man who persuaded Britain to establish its first Australian colony at Botany Bay in 1788.
Creator: Engraving after Benjamin West (1738-1820).
Date: unknown
Credit line: National Maritime Museum, London
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