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Discoveries and Surveys in New Guinea and the D'Entre-casteaux Islands

    Naturevolume 13pages363365 (1876) | Download Citation



    NEW Guinea has been much before the public recently. As our readers know it has been the field of a number of small exploring expeditions, the somewhat fragmentary results of which have only served to whet our appetite for more information. Most of these expeditions, under such men as Meyer, Beccari, D'Albertis, and Miklucho Maclay, have been occupied with the western part of the island, our knowledge of the eastern and larger half having been practically almost a blank. Capt. Lawson's wonderful work (NATURE, vol. xii. p. 83) with its abundance of astounding statements can scarcely be regarded as a contribution to our knowledge of the island, though it has made us still more anxious to know the truth about a land which, even in the present advanced state of geographical knowledge, seems to have unknown wonders to reveal. Quite recently we heard of the discovery of a large river debouching on the south coast, and of a gigantic bird, and the signs of an equally gigantic quadruped having been seen. Only last week we were able to give some news of the indefatigable D'Albertis. Then the Australian colonists are casting longing eyes on the fertile island, and a proposed colonising expedition recently made a considerable stir in this country. All these circumstances have made us anxious to obtain trustworthy information concerning a country of three times the area of England, Wales, and Scotland combined.

    Discoveries and Surveys in New Guinea and the D'Entre-casteaux Islands.

    A Cruise in Polynesia and Visits to the Pearl-shelling Stations in Torres Straits by H.M.S. Basilisk. By Capt. John MoresbyR.N. . With Maps and Illustrations. (London: John Murray, 1876.)

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