"The Institut National of France is desirous that several distant voyages useful to the progress of human knowledge should begin without delay. Its wishes have been endorsed by our Government which has just issued orders for the preparation as soon as possible of expeditions led by skilful navigators as well as enlightened men of science, and will approach the Government of your country for the necessary passports or safe-conducts for our vessels. The Institut National considers that it is precisely at the moment when war still burdens the world that the friends of humanity should work for it, by advancing the limits of science and of useful arts by means of enterprises similar to those which have immortalised the great navigators of our two nations and the illustrious men of science who have scoured sea and land to study nature, Sir, where they could do so with the greatest success."

Paris, 16 May 1800
Letter to Sir Joseph Banks, President of the Royal Society of London
De Beer, Gavin. The sciences were never at war [1960], p. 238

"Before two in the afternoon we stretched eastward again; and at four, a white rock was reported from aloft to be seen a-head. On approaching nearer, it proved to be a ship standing towards us; and we cleared for action, in case of being attacked. The stranger was a heavy-looking ship, without any top-gallant masts up; and our colours being hoisted, she showed a French ensign, and afterwards an English jack forward, as we did a white flag. At half-past five, the land being then five miles distant to the north-eastward, I hove to; and learned, as the stranger passed to leeward with a free wind, that it was the French national ship Le Geographe, under the command of captain Nicolas Baudin. We veered round as Le Geographe was passing, so as to keep our broadside to her, lest the flag of truce should be a deception; and having come to the wind on the other tack, a boat was hoisted out, and I went on board the French ship, which had also hove to."

Investigator [Encounter Bay] 8 April 1802
Extract from Flinders' Journal
A voyage to Terra Australis, 1814, vol. 1, p. 188


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