Bylot, Robert (DNB00)

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BYLOT, ROBERT (fl. 1610–1616), navigator, is first mentioned as a seaman of the Discovery, in the expedition to the North-West under Hudson in 1610–11. His being rated as master's mate, and the jealousy which this promotion excited, were among the causes of the mutiny of the ship's company and the death of the captain [see Hudson, Henry]. No blame seems to have been attributed to Bylot; and in 1612–13 he was again employed under Button, who completed the exploration of Hudson's Bay [see Button, Sir Thomas]. It seems probable that in 1614 he was employed with Gibbons, and in 1615 he was appointed to the command of the Discovery, with Baffin as his mate. The accounts of the voyages in this and the following year were written by Baffin, who was unquestionably the more scientific navigator, and whose name has rightly been associated with the principal results [see Baffin, William]. Bylot's name appears in the list of the company of the merchants-discoverers of the North-West Passage (Calendar of State Papers, Colonial—East Indies, 26 July 1612). The spelling of his name is uncertain. It appears in the different forms of Bylott, Bilot, and Byleth.

[Rundall's Voyages towards the North-West (Hakluyt Society), p. 97.]

J. K. L.