MEET

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FERDINAND

MAGELLAN

The 16th century explorer who masterminded the first ever voyage to sail round the world and in the process revealed the other side of the world to Europeans.

Candy Gourlay is the author of First Names Ferdinand Magellan and of several books for young people.

By some strange coincidence she has a photo in exactly the same pose as Tom Knight, the illustrator. More about Candy here.  Follow Candy on Instagram.

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Tom Knight is the illustrator of First Names Ferdinand and of many, many other children's books. He is also the author-illustrator of the Good Knight, Bad Knight  series. Visit Tom's website and find out more about him. Follow him on Instagram!

First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight
First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight

Ferdinand's incredible journey led to the discovery of many animals that Europeans had never seen before like Sea Lions and Penguins.

First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight
First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight

Ferdinand lived in a time when Europeans went on voyages to discover the unexplored world. it was called the Age of Exploration.

First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight
First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight

Ferdinand is credited with the first circumnavigation of the world even though he did not survive to complete it. He died in a battle with an island king in the Philippines.

First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight
First Names Ferdinand Illustrated by Tom Knight

Ferdinand's incredible journey led to the discovery of many animals that Europeans had never seen before like Sea Lions and Penguins.

1/5

Get to know Ferdinand Magellan on First Name terms! Find out:

  • How he named the biggest ocean in the world

  • How he switched countries from Portugal to Spain

  • How a penguin got named after him

  • How he discovered many peoples whether they liked it or not

  • How he became famous for a voyage he never finished

TEACHERS, INVITE ME FOR

A VIRTUAL AUTHOR VISIT!

In response to Pandemic restrictions, I have made a video of my presentation available to rent for a fraction of the cost of a live author visit. It  is energetic and full of rollicking insight into the Age of Exploration – how spices made Europeans search for sea routes to Asia, how new technology enabled ships to travel farther than they'd ever gone before, how maps reflect the culture of its period. There are a couple of quizzes too!

CHECK IT OUT HERE

DOWNLOAD A FREE TEACHING GUIDE

HEADER IMAGE BY LARA LOUISE 

"History is a many-sided narrative ... The usual reading of this story dismisses as bit players the indigenous people whose lives were changed forever by explorers.  It's high time our children are taught to read this narrative critically, ask questions and do the work to find the answers." Candy Gourlay

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Read this Q&A on the 

Youth Libraries Group 

Blog

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A replica of the Victoria: the only one of Ferdinand's fleet to survive the voyage.

Photo by Christian Ferrer

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Ferdinand is part of the First Names Series published by David Fickling Books – biographies of famous and historical figures.

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PRAISE FOR FERDINAND

SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL

This latest entry in the “First Names” series covers Ferdinand Magellan’s life (1480–1521), from his boyhood in Portugal to his death in the Philippines. Gourlay provides plenty of engaging action scenes and historical facts but also discusses the impact his conquests had on the Native and Indigenous populations of the lands he visited ... Verdict: A modern, engaging biography that is a strong buy for classes or libraries needing to support research projects or students interested in world history.

READ THE REVIEW

 

BOOKS FOR KEEPS:

 Gourlay’s book destabilises the notion of an uncontested Eurocentric narrative and as such signifies a break from convention. It comes at an important moment for education and publishing and invites questions as to how to most effectively contextualise historical figures so as to teach a history oriented towards truth rather than glorification.
READ BEYOND THE SECRET GARDEN: THE OTHER SIDE OF THE STORY
by Darren Chetty and Karen Sands O'Connor

BOOKWAGON:

This marvellous potted biography in the “First Names” series has spirit and humour throughout. Magellan’s legacy is examined in the light of the exploitation of the lands he ‘discovered’ ... Candy Gourlay narrates his life with skill and plenty of wry humour.  She places Magellan in both the context of his own time, but also with hindsight, reflecting on his dubious legacy.
READ THE REVIEW