Wednesday, September 30, 2020

"The First Woman To Sail Around the World"

From  the "Things I did not know" file.
It's a really big file.

From The Maritime Executive:
In 1765, a young peasant woman left a remote corner of rural France where her impoverished family had scraped a living for generations. She set out on a journey that would take her around the world from the South American jungles and Magellan Strait to the tropical islands of the Indo-Pacific.
Jeanne Barret (also Baret or Baré) was the first woman known to have circumnavigated the world. Abandoning her bonnet and apron for men’s trousers and coats, she disguised herself as a man and signed on as assistant to the naturalist Philibert Commerson on one of the ships of Louis-Antoine de Bougainville’s expedition around the world.

During that voyage, Jeanne helped Commerson amass the largest individual natural history collection known at the time. Thousands of the plant specimens can still be found in the herbarium of the Paris natural history museum, although few bear Jeanne’s name.

Despite Jeanne’s singular achievement, she left no account of her journey or her life. She might have been entirely forgotten were it not for a dramatic revelation on a Tahitian beach in 1768.
Bougainville’s voyage famously promoted Tahiti as a utopian paradise of beautiful women and sexual freedom. But the Tahitian men were equally keen to meet European women and, despite her disguise, they swiftly identified Jeanne as one....

*The "Things I did not know" file:

Okay, truth be told that's the filing cabinet of the Central Social Institution, Prague, via DesignYouTrust
as seen in "Hmmm...."Global Ocean Circulation Is Speeding Up""
The things I did not know file is much larger.

And last seen in "This Is Pretty Funny: One of the W.H.O.'s Goodwill Ambassadors Is The Wife Of Xi Jinping".