Worldwind Sydney

aerial view of Sydney Harbour and Botany Bay
A screenshot from NASA’s globe software World Wind showing
Sydney Harbour inlet at right and Botany Bay at left.

"The spacious harbour with its hundred coves
And fairy islets - seats of savage loves."
From William Charles Wentworth's poem Australasia.
See full poem at Australian Poetry Library.

I am not sure that this was an image that William Wentworth was visualising when he wrote these lines in 1822 but the photographic image does show the many Sydney coves. A cove is a small type of bay or coastal inlet, usually with a narrow entrance that protects it's waters from the currents of the bay. The word cove comes from the Old English word cofa, which means shelter. Australian's are familiar with the word cove as we all learnt at school that in 1788 Captain Phillip discovered and named Sydney Cove, a small inlet in the harbour, which he found suitable for a settlement.

Wentworth wrote the poem Australasia while he was studying, at Cambridge University, in England as an entry into a poetry competition in which he was awarded second prize.

William Charles Wentworth (1790-1872) was an explorer, poet, journalist, barrister, landowner, and politician. He set up the first non-government newspaper, The Australian, to champion the rights of Australians and his many causes such as representative government, the abolition of transportation of convicts, freedom of the press and trial by jury. The paper had a liberal editorial leaning and pitted it's writings against "the exclusives" in Sydney and sought equal rights and status for ex-convicts.

World Wind is a virtual globe developed by NASA for use on personal computers running Microsoft Windows. It allows you to zoom from outer space into any place on Earth with the use of satellite imagery and elevation data so you can see in 3D as if you were there.

Get a more detailed biography of William Charles Wentworth.

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