H. Hello and welcome to another post...
The expedition's aims were to complete the Pacific discoveries of James Cook (whom Lapérouse greatly admired), correct and complete maps of the area, establish trade contacts, open new maritime routes and enrich French science and scientific collections. His ships were L'Astrolabe (under Fleuriot de Langle) and La Boussole, both 500 tons. They were storeships reclassified as frigates for the occasion. Their objectives were geographic, scientific, ethnological, economic (looking for opportunities for whaling or fur trading), and political (the eventual establishment of French bases or colonial cooperation with their Spanish allies in the Philippines). They were to explore both the north and south Pacific, including the coasts of the Far East as well as Australia, and send back reports through existing European outposts in the Pacific.
The concern that I have is how in Australia all reference to anyone but the British has been omitted from the history we teach the children at school. Imagine if the French had participated in the colonisation of Australia and they hadn't had the French Revolution? The Napoleonic Wars of 1803–1815 as we all know were a series of major conflicts between the French Empire and its allies, led by Napoleon I, who was defeated by none other than the British Wellington in the battle of Waterloo.
Also in 1788, the American War on Independence had taken hold of North America and it was logical for the British to begin their quest to invade New Holland while everyone else was preoccupied in the conflicts experienced there. Check out this link:
I am beginning to suspect the English had a lot to do with the wars and political issues in Europe, to include perhaps the fires in Portugal after the massive earthquake that destroyed Lisbon on 1 November 1755. Ironically on 26 January 1531, Lisbon had experienced another earthquake that almost destroyed the city then but was not as severe as the one 1755 that cause a tsunami of huge proportions. Had the Portuguese not experienced such destruction, they may have been in a better position to also explore New Holland better. It is well documented that the Spanish wanted to concentrate their efforts solely in America and showed no interest in this Great Southern Land.
Can you imagine, considering the utter destruction of Africa and The Americas by the Europeans what would have happened to Australia had they not killed each other enough during the wars against the all-mighty Napoleon? Had the conflict in Europe gone the other way, the Americans may not have been able to buy the territories they obtained from the French in 1803 for $15,000,000 and Napoleon would never have sold it to Jefferson:
Had Europe not been in such a mess, the Americans would never have had the opportunity to take matters into their own hands and "The U-S of A" would not have ever evolved as it did and Australia may not have had the complete dominance by the British over the Aboriginal people in the way they have over the past 200 years.