European map-makers were convinced there existed a Great Southland somewhere south of the equator. In 1569 the great geographer Gerhardus Mercator used continens australis to refer to the supposed land south of the equator.


In 1606 Pedro Fernandez de Quiros discovered Vanuatu, and, believing that the island on which he landed was part of the great southern continent, named it Australia del Espiritu Santo. In his memorial published in 1610, the name Australia incognita appeared on the title page and in 1612 the Dutch cartographer Hessel Gerritsz published a book containing a Dutch translation of de Quiros’s Memorial which rendered it as “Australia Incognita;” the earliest printed use of the word Australia.


Cook's voyage of 1770 (in the Endeavour shown below) mapped much of our East Coast. And as they say "the rest is history"!


Great Southland is a name intertwined with our history and we feel privileged to work under such a name.