FOR some 15 years past, Dr. J. C. Beaglehole has been editing the Journals of Captain Cook for the Hakluyt Society. These embrace the three great Pacific voyages, and it is a happy circumstance that the two volumes covering the third voyage, and which complete a series of four massive volumes, have been published by the Cambridge University Press in 1967 in good time for the 200th anniversary, on 26 August this year, of the sailing from Plymouth of Cook in the Endeavour on his first great voyage to the Pacific.
Having loosed the topsails as a signal for sailing and hoisted a Jack at the fore topmast to inform Mr. Banks to come on board on 25 August 1768, Cook sailed in Endeavour next day. The undramatic entry in his journal began—‘At 2 p.m. got under sail and put to sea having on board 94 persons including Officers, Seamen, Gentlemen and their Servants, near 18 months provisions, 10 Carriage guns, 12 Swivels with good store of Ammunition and stores of all kinds’.
Now, with these four volumes, the Hakluyt Society, for the first time, has made available to us the daily entries set down by Cook from that first day of sailing in 1768, throughout the three voyages, until his final entry on 17 January 1779.