Book ID: CBB474045645

First Fleet Surgeon: The Voyage of Arthur Bowes Smyth (2015)


In a single leather-bound volume of 238 unlined pages of parchment, Surgeon Arthur Bowes Smyth describes his two-and-a-half year journey with the First Fleet from Portsmouth in England to the new colony in Australia and back. He is a frank, articulate and observant writer, and his diary, a treasure of the National Library of Australia, covers life at sea, stopovers in the slave port of Rio de Janeiro and the tropical paradise of Tahiti, and three months of early settlement in Australia. As surgeon to more than 100 convict women on the Lady Penrhyn, Bowes Smyth gives an insight into the plight of these women, sentenced to transportation, and their children. In First Fleet Surgeon, author David Hill brings to life the voyage of the Lady Penrhyn and the early months of settlement at Port Jackson (modern-day Sydney) through Bowes Smyth's colourful language and frank anecdotes. Each chapter includes a page of Bowes Smyth's handwritten diary entries accompanied by a full transcript, and is richly illustrated with paintings, lithographs and maps from the National Library of Australia's collection. Information boxes on subjects such as eighteenth-century medical knowledge, brewing beer on board, and a surgeon's typical day provide context to Bowes Smyth's story

Reviewed By

Review Angeline Brasier (2015) Review of "First Fleet Surgeon: The Voyage of Arthur Bowes Smyth". Historical Records of Australian Science (pp. 207-208). unapi

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Authors & Contributors
Orchiston, Wayne
Flinders, Matthew
Beardsley, Martyn
Bennett, N. H.
Hurt, Raymond
Foxhall, Katherine
Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage
Journal of Medical Biography
History of Education Quarterly
Health and History
Archives of Natural History
Medical History
Boydell Press
Manchester University Press
Halstead Press
ETT Imprint
Physicians; doctors
Sea travel
Guthrie, George James
Koettlitz, Reginald
Hodge, William Thomas
Adams, Charles Francis
Lopes Cançado, Maura
Banks, Joseph
Sydney (Australia)
Great Britain
New Zealand
East Indies
19th century
20th century, late
18th century
20th century
20th century, early
Early modern
Royal College of Surgeons, London
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (Australia)
Auckland Institute and Musem
Sydney Observatory
National Health Service (Great Britain)
International Astronomical Union

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