In1522-1524various voyages of discovery were made on the west coast of America, partly in the hope of finding a strait connecting the two oceans to the region of the central isthmus.
Fuller knowledge of this coast was acquired by Alvaro de Saavedra (1527-1529), and among later voyages those of Ruy Lopez de Villalobos (1542-1545) and Miguel Lopez de Legaspi (1564-1565) should be mentioned.
William Dampier, however, making various voyages in 1690-1705, explored the coasts of Australia and New Guinea, and at the opening of the century both the French and the Dutch showed some activity.
These, which are described in separate articles, helped to maintain the tradition of an earthly paradise which had become associated with the myth of Atlantis; and all except Avalon were marked in maps of the 14th and 15th centuries, and formed the object of voyages of discovery, in one case (St Brendan's island) until the 18th century.
There is a careful translation of Champlain's Voyages, by Professor and Mrs E.