The State Library has acquired two documents representing the earliest printed record of the discovery and plans for settling the southern continent, Terra Australis.
The two 'memorials' just purchased were printed in 1608 and 1614 by Pedro Fernandes de Queirós.
They are part of a series of petitions to King Philip III of Spain requesting support for a missionary expedition to the southern lands Queirós had discovered in 1606.
The Memorial from 1608 (the 4th in the series of printed petitions) appears to be unique. Prior to its acquisition by the State Library it was not known to exist in printed form; only a manuscript copy in Barcelona had been described.
The Memorial Queirós had printed in 1614 (his 14th) was completely unrecorded prior to its acquisition by the Library. It is the most passionate and presumably the last of the petitions printed. In this memorial Queirós begs the King for a response to his repeated requests to back a missionary expedition to the lands he had discovered.
The purchase of these two newly uncovered memorials brings to thirteen the State Library's collection of these the rarest of all printed Australiana.
More information on the Queirós memorials can be found at Discover Collections.
Coordinator, Bibliographic Access
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