Luis Vaez de Torres
Torres, Luis Vaez de
Born 1560; died 1614(7). Spanish navigator.
In 1605, Torres, as commander of one of the three ships in the expedition of P. F. de Quirós, set sail from Callao, Peru, in search of the “Unknown Southern Land” (Terra australis incognita) in the Pacific Ocean. After the expedition discovered several islands of the Tuamotu and New Hebrides groups, Quirós returned to the Americas, but Torres and the commander of the expedition’s third ship, Diego de Prado y Tobar, remained to explore the Hebrides for another year. The two then headed west, becoming the first to cross the Coral Sea. After discovering the southern coast of New Guinea and the strait between New Guinea and Australia (named the Torres Strait in 1769), they arrived in Manila, the Philippines.
Also named after Torres is a group of islands in the northern part of the New Hebrides.