Arthur Phillip (1738-1814), admiral and governor, was born on 11 October 1738 in London, the son of Jacob Phillip, a language teacher who came to London from Frankfurt.
On 7 July 1761 he was provisionally appointed lieutenant and on 25 April 1763 he was retired on half-pay. Between this date an 1774 he served at sea for only brief periods and much of his time was taken up with farming.
In 1778 he returned to the navy and was again retired on half-pay on 25 May 1784. He was appointed the first governor of New South Wales on 12 October 1786. He arrived at Botany Bay on 18 January 1788 after a voyage whose success again owed much to Phillip's care. The original site proving unsuited to settlement he relocated to Port Jackson and on 26 January landing operations began there.
On 11 December 1792 Phillip sailed for England in the Atlantic to seek medical attention. By 1796 Phillip had sufficiently recovered his health to resume active naval duties. After successively commanding several ships he was given a shore appointment in 1798 as commander of the Hampshire Sea Fencibles.. Early in January 1799 he became a rear admiral of the Blue and was placed in charge of the Sea Fencibles throughout England. He carried out these tasks until he retired in 1805. He died on 31 August 1814 three months after receiving his last promotion to admiral of the Blue.