Laperouse By Ernest Scott

 -  Inasmuch as the final
authority on the spelling of a personal name is that of the individual
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Inasmuch As The Final Authority On The Spelling Of A Personal Name Is That Of The Individual Who Owns It,

There can be no doubt that we ought always to spell this name "Laperouse," as, in fact, successors in the

Family who have borne it have done; though in nearly all books, French as well as English, it is spelt "La Perouse." In the little volume now in the reader's hands, the example of Laperouse himself has been followed.

On this point it may be remarked concerning another navigator who was engaged in Australian exploration, that we may lose touch with an interesting historical fact by not observing the correct form of a name. On maps of Tasmania appears "D'Entrecasteaux Channel." It was named by and after Admiral Bruny Dentrecasteaux, who as commander of the RECHERCHE and ESPERANCE visited Australian waters. We shall have something to say about his expedition towards the close of the book. Now, Dentrecasteaux sailed from France in 1791, while the Revolution was raging. All titles had been abolished by a decree of the National Assembly on July 19th, 1790. When he made this voyage, therefore, the Admiral was not Bruny D'Entrecasteaux, a form which implied a territorial titular distinction; but simply Citizen Dentrecasteaux. The name is so spelt in the contemporary histories of his expedition written by Rossel and Labillardiere. It would not have been likely to be spelt in any other way by a French officer at the time. Thus, the Marquis de la Fayette became simply Lafayette, and so with all other bearers of titles in France.

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