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A commonwealth of thieves : the improbable birth of Australia

Author: Thomas Keneally
Publisher: New York : Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, [2006]
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Drawing on historical documents and journals, with the authority of a historian and the narrative grace of a novelist, Keneally recounts the founding of the first penal colony in Australia in 1788. At the center of the story is Arthur Phillips, an ambitious captain in the Royal Navy assigned the formidable task of organizing the expedition to Australia and establishing a colony comprised mainly of unskilled and  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Biography
History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Keneally, Thomas.
Commonwealth of thieves.
New York : Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, ©2006
(OCoLC)607832165
Named Person: Arthur Phillip; Arthur Phillip; Arthur Phillip
Material Type: Biography, Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Thomas Keneally
ISBN: 038551459X 9780385514590
OCLC Number: 65207155
Notes: Originally published: Milson Point, NSW : Random House Australia, 2005.
Description: 385 pages : maps ; 25 cm
Responsibility: Thomas Keneally.
More information:

Abstract:

Drawing on historical documents and journals, with the authority of a historian and the narrative grace of a novelist, Keneally recounts the founding of the first penal colony in Australia in 1788. At the center of the story is Arthur Phillips, an ambitious captain in the Royal Navy assigned the formidable task of organizing the expedition to Australia and establishing a colony comprised mainly of unskilled and malcontent criminals and petty thieves, many determined to overcome their pasts and begin anew. Keneally re-creates the grueling overseas voyage, a hellish journey that claimed many lives. As governor, Phillips took on the challenges of dealing with unruly convicts, disgruntled officers, a bewildered, sometimes hostile native population, as well as such serious matters as food shortages and disease. In the end Phillips emerges as a governor driven by a yearning for recognition and advancement, yet possessed of a social conscience rare for his time.--From publisher description.

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