Explorations – No 16 Jun 1994

(issued September 1997)


WALLACE KIRSOP, Dennis Davison

A reflection on the contribution of Dennis Davison to Australian cultural life, as a writer, an academic, mentor and participant. He was an Associate Editor of Explorations.

EDWARD DUYKER, With a French Accent in the National Library

An introduction to the holdings of French material in the National Library, inspired by the author’s search for material relating to the French officer Marc-Joseph Marion Dufresne. The article provides details of Dufresne’s maritime exploits, together with those of later French explorers, referring to relevant documents held in the Library.

Keywords: Marion Dufresne, French exploration of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, National Library of Australia.

WALLACE KIRSOP, Sir William à Beckett in France

William à Beckett was Victoria’s first Chief Justice. This article discusses his account of his 1853-54 grand tour of Europe in Out of Harness, published in 1854 by J.J. Guillaume in London. The article contains a long excerpt (pp. 92-96 of the book) narrating the French leg of his journey.

Keywords: travel in France in the 1850s, Paris, shops and boulevards.

EDWARD DUYKER, Mauritius and Family History at the National Library

Another overview of the collections in the National Library, this time relating to Mauritius, including genealogical and family history sources as well as other material of a more general interest.

Keywords: Mauritius, National Library of Australia, colonial history of the Indian Ocean.

The House in Robe Street: Addenda

Brief addenda to the article that appeared in Issue No 15


Alexander Massov and Lena Govor, Rossiiskie moryaki i puteshestvenniki v Avstralii [Russian Sailors and Travellers in Australia], reviewed by Edward Duyker

R. E. R. Banks, B. Elliott, J. G. Hawkes, et al., Sir Joseph Banks: A Global Perspective, reviewed by Edward Duyker

Muséum d’histoire naturelle du Havre, Les Velins de Charles-Alexandre Lesueur, Exposition du 4 mai au 2 juin 1996 a l’Espace Claude Monet, reviewed by Edward Duyker

Colin Forster, France and Botany Bay: The Lure of a Penal Colony, reviewed by Edward Duyker

Explorations No 4 – Mar 1987


STAN SCOTT, The Incomparable “Kara” (1898-1968)

“Kara” was Nazar Karagheusian, a Paris-born French-speaking personality of Armenian background, who taught French at the University of Melbourne from 1923 to 1957. Although having no formal qualifications, “Kara” was a well-read scholar with an infectious enthusiasm for many aspects of French literature and culture, as well as a sense of fun. An outstanding if unorthodox teacher, he was A.R. Chisholm’s favourite colleague and his best friend. “Kara” retired shortly after Professor Chisholm.

Keywords: Nazar Karagheusian, Madame Marie Karagheusian, ‘Rue de la Paix’ boutique, Theophile Rouel, Melbourne University French Club, A.I.F. Marie Aghassian Scholarship Fund, A.R. Chisholm

IRENE CUNNINGHAM, Mademoiselle Soubeiran (b.France 1859 – d.Sydney 1933)

In this biographical profile of Augustine Soubeiran, the author relies heavily on Fifi Hawthorn’s 1972 book on Kambala Girls’ School. The article reflects the state of knowledge of Mademoiselle Soubeiran’s life at that stage. It discusses her background, her arrival in Sydney in the 1880s, her friendship with Louisa Gurney and her career as co-principal of Kambala. The second part of the article is devoted to Mademoiselle Soubeiran’s participation in the work of the French-Australian League of Help during the First World War.

Keywords: Augustine Soubeiran, Kambala Girls’ School, Louisa Gurney, The French-Australian League of Help, Franco-Prussian War, Légion d’honneur

JOHN McKENZIE, Associations with Neurophysiology and Neurophysiologists in France

The author provides an account of his professional and personal contacts with French colleagues from 1968 to the time of writing in 1985. He describes his collaboration with French specialists of psychophysiology and neurophysiology, especially Professor Denise Albe-Fessard of the Marey Institute in Paris, and her husband, Professor Alfred Fessard of the Collège de France.

Keywords: Professor Denise Albe-Fessard, Professor Alfred Fessard, Lord Adrian, brain research, Mai ’68, University of Melbourne

EDWARD DUYKER, Coutance and the Voyage of the Adèle

In 1803 French-born Mauritian navigator Louis Coutance travelled to Port Jackson on the Mauritius-built and registered Adèle. Coutance’s ship carried 4,000 gallons of Mauritian rum and 430 gallons of Cape wine, as well as some other products. Whilst Governor King allowed him to land his cargo, he indicated that no further trade in spirits or food products would be allowed. After 48 days Coutance, who was most impressed with Port Jackson, returned to Mauritius. He eventually resumed his rank as Lieutenant de vaisseau and served under Decaen, the French governor of Mauritius.

Keywords: Louis Coutance, Mauritius, rum trade, Governor King, Governor Bligh, Lord Hobart, Journal of the voyage of the Adèle, Mitchell Library


Monique Dilan, Une île éclatée: analyse de l’émigration mauricienne, 1960-82, reviewed by Edward Duyker

Isabel Ollivier (transcription and translation), Extracts from Journals relating to the visit to New Zealand in May-July 1772 of the French ships “Mascarin” and “Marquis de Castries” under the command of MJ. Marion du Fresne, reviewed by Edward Duyker

ISFAR, Articles of Association