Christopher Middleton (navigator)

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Christopher Middleton (died 12 February 1770) was a British naval officer and navigator. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society on 7 April 1737.

On 5 March 1741, Middleton was appointed to the command of HMS Furnace, a Royal Navy bomb vessel which was refitted at Deptford Dockyard and rigged as a three-masted ship. In May 1741, he left England on the Furnace, accompanied by a smaller vessel, the purchased HMS Discovery, under the command of Commander William Moor, and sailed to Hudson Bay in search of a Northwest Passage. He spent the winter at Churchill, Manitoba. He then proceeded north into Roes Welcome Sound and discovered Wager Inlet where he was iced in for three weeks. At the head of the sound he was blocked by ice and named the place Repulse Bay.

Middleton returned to England in 1742, where he was presented with the Copley Medal by the Royal Society, to whom he presented a paper on "The extraordinary degrees and surprising effects of Cold in Hudson's Bay".

See also[edit]


  • Williams, Glyndwr (1974). "Middleton, Christopher". In Halpenny, Francess G (ed.). Dictionary of Canadian Biography. III (1741–1770) (online ed.). University of Toronto Press.
  • Laughton, John Knox (1894). "Middleton, Christopher (d.1770)". In Lee, Sidney (ed.). Dictionary of National Biography. 37. London: Smith, Elder & Co. pp. 342–343.