|author: Eleanor Dark||shelved under: Fiction|
|date: 1980 c.1941||publisher: Fontana|
|content type: book|
The Timeless Land (1941) is a work of historical fiction by Eleanor Dark (1901–1985). The novel The Timeless Land is the first of The Timeless Land trilogy of novels about European settlement and exploration of Australia. The narrative is told from English and Aboriginal points of view. The novel begins with two Aboriginal men watching the arrival of the First Fleet at Sydney Harbour on 26 January 1788. The novel describes the first years of the colony and the vindictive diplomacy of captain Arthur Phillip, famine and the devastating effects of exotic disease on the previously unexposed Aboriginal population. The novel ends in a dramatic climax when troops encounter an escaped convict. Dark conducted her historical research at the Mitchell Library in Sydney, Australia. Watkin Tench, author of The Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, is a key character in The Timeless Land. The book is regarded as a classic by fans of Australian literature and has been reprinted in 2002 and has a modest following. The novel was on the curriculum for high school students in Australia in the mid twentieth century. A television series was broadcast by the Australian Broadcasting Commission in 1980, starring David Gulpilil as Bennelong.
The subsequent books in The Timeless Land trilogy are Storm of Time (1948) and No Barrier (1953).