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NARBOROUGH, Sir John, English navigator, born in Norfolk in 1637 ; died in Chelsea in 1688. He entered the navy as a midshipman, served during the war with the Dutch in 1664, and was given in 1669 the command of an expedition to the South sea. He sailed from Deptford, 26 November, 1669, and after exploring the coast of Patagonia entered the Strait of Magellan, and arrived on 15 November, 1670, in the Pacific ocean. He sailed along the Chilian coast as far as Valdivia, but, being denied entrance to that harbor by the Spanish authorities, he returned to England. Charles II., who had expected great results from Narborough's voyage, and came in state to receive the latter at Gravesend, was greatly disappointed. In the following year Narborough served under the Duke of York at the battle of Solebay. He was made rear-admiral and knighted in 1673, commanded also the expeditions against Tripoli in 1674 and Algiers in 1677, and was appointed in 1680 commissioner of the admiralty, which post he held till his death. The narrative of his expedition to the South sea, written in collaboration with his lieutenant, Pecker, was published in the series "An Account of Several Late Voyages and Discoveries to the South and North" (London, 1694). It was translated into French (Amsterdam, 1722), into German (Vienna, 1725), and into Dutch and Italian. Narborough's narrative gives the exact geographical position of the principal points on the Patagonian coasts and the Strait of Magellan, and was extensively used for nearly a century by navigators to the South sea. He gave his name to an island south of Chiloe.
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