Here’s how much they knew about Australia (or New Holland as they called it then) back in 1743 – as revealed by an old fire-screen at Ham House, a National Trust property on the outskirts of London. The west and north-west coasts are roughly correct but Van Diemen’s Land (now Tasmania) is very vague and still attached to the continent. The whole east coast is conjectural and joins Papua-New Guinea in the north. The discovery of the Torres Strait in 1611 remained unknown, at least in England. Cook, Bass and Flinders had a lot of gaps to fill in over the next 60 years!