At Sea to Sydney, 13 May 1893

In otherwise calm weather the sea was choppy so that „Elisabeth“ was pitching. These movements seemed to be caused by a high sea coming from the East. We saw the Northumberland and Percy islands, very stony islands that reminded me of Dalmatia with their steeply descending rocky shore and sparse vegetation. At noon we are opposite Port Clinton which we can only recognize as a line on the horizon. The great coral Harrier Reef that up to now has accompanied us on backboard and provided good cover against wind and sea is leaving us behind. We are now in the open sea that was by and by getting calmer. Towards 8 o’clock in the evening we crossed the tropic of Capricorn and passed the group of the Capricorn islands. Late at night the lights from Lady Elliot island are blinking at us.

During the day I had the opportunity to observe a richer wildlife than before. Dolphins appeared and played around the bow of the ship — some bullet shots fired at them proved ineffective — frigate birds and various sea gulls presented themselves; among the latter one of a species I did not know, black-brown with noticeably large and pointed wings. In an elegant flight this sea gull circled around the ship and suddenly dove into the waves to re-emerge with a skillfully caught prey.


  • Location: near Lady Elliot Island
  • ANNO – on  13.05.1893 in Austria’s newspapers. The Sultan of Johore whom Franz Ferdinand had just visited during his stay in Singapore is now in Vienna. A small world.
  • The k.u.k. Hof-Burgtheater is playing „Die kluge Käthe“ and the k.u.k. Hof-Operntheater is performing the opera “Das goldene Kreuz”.

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