Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Barentz, or Barents, William, was born in the island of Ter Schelling, off the coast of Friesland, but little or nothing is known of him until in 1594 he set out as pilot of a Dutch expedition which explored much of the coast of Nova Zembla, and the next year he made a less successful voyage to the same region. In 1596 with two ships he pushed as far north as Spitzbergen, then came down to Nova Zembla, and wintered in a spot which he called Ice Haven, being the first explorer who ever incurred such an experience. Next summer, after great privations, the party got home again, but Barentz died on the journey. His memorials have been published by the Hakluyt Society.