Title page from 'Cook's Voyages', 1784.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
The title page from 'Complete History of Captain Cook's First, Second and Third Voyages' (1784). The introduction briefly describes the first voyage in the 'Endeavour', the purpose of which was to observe the transit of Venus. Cook (1728-1779) the famed navigator and hydrographer, was accompanied on the first voyage by the naturalist Joseph Banks (1743-1820). Cook (1728-1779) transformed the West's knowledge of the Pacific region, circumnavigating the globe twice. He also attempted to find the Northwest Pasage in order to avoid the dangerous Southern Ocean and Cape Horn. He was killed by Hawaiians after a dispute over a stolen boat in 1779.