Walvis leaving Batavia …

walvis… with the retourvloot (‘return fleet’) of 1647.  Before foundering on the reef of the same name off Selayar, Walvis had made 17 (!) voyages between Asia and Europe, thus traversed more than 225,000 nautical miles.  She was one of the ships of the VOC fleet tasked with the foundation of the Dutch Cape Colony in 1652; unable to make land in due time, however, on that voyage 56 of her company of 242 died before reaching the Cape. There are some arguments for her to be the namesake for the port of Walvis Bay in today’s Namibia; others maintain that the bay was given its name by Cpt. Duminy of the ship Meermin during a reconnaissance voyage of Africa’s SW coast in 1793.

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