New Zealand's capital city, Wellington, was named in November 1840 after Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, victor of Waterloo (1815), British statesman and Prime Minister, and a supporter of the New Zealand Company. Wellesley was born in Dublin into a Protestant aristocratic family, in the year Lieut. James Cook first explored New Zealand. Wellesley took a military commission and campaigned in the Peninsula in Spain during the Napoleonic Wars, and achieved ultimate victory against the French at Waterloo. The Duke of Wellington's long and active life spanned a period of intense danger of invasion for Britain, and immense change in the British Empire, including the first railways and steamships, Catholic Emancipation, and the foundation of both ANZAC nations.