The ancestors of the tribes, which is now called Aboriginal, began to settle in Australia for at least 40 000 лет назад, and possibly, even 100 000 лет наyears ago spread over much of the continent, and penetrated to the o.Tasmaniyu.
Their main occupations were collecting edible plants, Hunting and Fishing. The number of Aboriginal people is estimated in various ways - from 300 thousand. to 1,2 million. man. Trepang traders from the islands of Indonesia, regularly visited the northern coast of Australia before the foundation of the first European settlement on this continent in the 1788, but it is unknown, When traders began sailing mentioned.
The Europeans are interested in this region in 16 a., When geographers have suggested, that somewhere between Africa and South America should be a land mass. The discovery of this continent by Europeans occurred in the search for sea routes to India from both the Indian, and Pacific Oceans.
In 1567 Alvaro de Mendanya opened the Solomon Islands; in 1606 Luis de Torres visited New Guinea and suggested, that he saw "great southern continent". Dirk Hartog in the traveler 1616 landed on an island in the Gulf of Shark in the modern Western Australia. В 1642 AInel Tasman discovered the island, which now bears his name - Tasmania. В 1644 He swam in the seas between New Guinea and Instralia, but he could not find a passage through the Torres Strait into the Pacific Ocean.
In 1768 British government organized an expedition for geographical and astronomical research in the Pacific. This expedition led by Captain James Cook reached the east coast of Australia 1770. It proceeded along the coast to the north at a distance 1670 km from the present eastern Victoria to the Torres Strait. Cook named this land New South Wales and declared its possession of England. He then went through the Torres Strait to Cape of Good Hope and from there returned to his homeland.