The French Contribution to the Exploration of the Pacific in the Eighteenth Century
THIS THESIS is an attempt to examine and correlate the voyages of the French in the Pacific Ocean during the latter part of the eighteenth century. So far, no study of this kind has been attempted, most recent research work in France and Australia being directed towards problems of colonisation and administration. Existing modern works on eighteenth-century French voyages are very sparse, usually limited to broad accounts of individual voyages or to biographies, with little recourse to unpublished sources. Even studies of importance, such as the Swedish historian Dahlgren's work on trading voyages, remain little known: it is still customary, for instance, to refer to Bougainville as the first French captain to complete a circumnavigation, whereas in fact he was the eleventh.