Story: European discovery of New Zealand

Russian commemorative medallion

Russian commemorative medallion

Explorers of nationalities other than Dutch, English and French played minor roles in the country’s discovery. Alessandro Malaspina, an Italian in command of a Spanish expedition, explored Doubtful Sound in 1793; and in 1820 Fabian von Bellingshausen used Queen Charlotte Sound as a base on a Russian expedition exploring the southern polar waters. This medallion was issued to commemorate von Bellingshausen’s Antarctic expedition and shows two sailing ships, with penguins on an ice floe in the foreground.

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Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: Curios-003-032-2

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

John Wilson, 'European discovery of New Zealand - Explorers after Cook', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/object/1434/russian-commemorative-medallion (accessed 18 July 2019)

Story by John Wilson, published 8 Feb 2005, updated 1 May 2016