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PICTURE: Why is this picture from the National Maritime Museum attached to the William Baffin article. It's *not* of him. As the caption in the NMM makes clear, it's a Dutch painting, probably of an (anonymous) Dutch gentleman (as evidenced by the flag on the ship visible through the window in the painting). Their page on the painting (http://www.nmm.ac.uk/collections/explore/object.cfm?ID=BHC3132) also shows that the person in it was 23 years old when it was painted, in 1624. Well, Baffin died in 1622, at considerably older than 21 years of age (an age that would have made him 11 years old during his first recorded voyage to Greenland, as pilot, in 1612). The Dictionary of National Biography article on Baffin also makes clear that there is no known image of him. This image simply has nothing to do with Baffin and should be removed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jonathandore (talk • contribs) 09:13, 31 July 2008 (UTC)
YEAR OF BIRTH: I removed 1584 as the year of birth, since there is absolutely no documentary evidence to support it (see Markham's edition of all documents relating to Baffin, Hakluyt Society, 1881). No documents have come to light since then to provide new information. The 1584 date originates in Britannica 11th edition, but the author gives no source and the date is clearly an extrapolation on the age a pilot is likely to have reached by the time he's entrusted with certain level of responsibility. But it could easily be 10 or 15 years out -- really not good enough to even warrant a "circa" designation. It's simply a guess. (The author of the Baffin article in the new Dictionary of National Biography, Wayne Davies, has confirmed to me by email that he had no other source for repeating the date in his article but Britannica, and he agreed it had no documentary basis.)