Captain James Cook´s epic voyage of discovery in the great southern ocean reached the east coast of Australia in 1770. Before him stretched a vast untamed continent that few Europeans had ever seen, a land filled with unknown natural wonders awaiting discovery. At Cook´s side were two of England´s greatest naturalists - Sir Joseph Banks and Dr Daniel Solander. Solander was a Swede, and had arrived in England, fresh from doctoral studies under the tutelage of the renowned Carl von Linnaeus. Within the next few days these two men were about to discover and describe some of the most bizarre plants and animals ever encountered, life forms that captured the imaginations of the general public and ignited the European scientific community into a fury of discussion and debate.
Banks and Solander were driven by unstoppable curiosity and the thrill of discovery. Today, almost 250 years later, the same motivations inspire scientists the world over.
To mark the 300th anniversary of the birth of Solander´s teacher, a competition is available for Australian and Swedish secondary school students that is intended to inspire the same curiosity for the natural world - and the same thrill of discovery - that fuelled Solander´s quest to understand the strange plants and animals he encountered in Australia. The competition will be based on the production of a Digital Essay that explores the competition´s theme - “Discovery". The winner of the competition in each country will be awarded an international journey to participate in a scientific expedition. The Australian winner will be flown to Sweden , and the Swedish winner will be flown to Australia.
All information on this web site is from the Linnaeus Tercentenary year of 2007 and has not been updated since. If using texts from this web site, please refer to Linnaeus2007 as the source.