A GENERAL HISTORY AND COLLECTION OF VOYAGES AND TRAVELS,
ARRANGED IN SYSTEMATIC ORDER:
FORMING A COMPLETE HISTORY OF THE ORIGIN AND PROGRESS OF NAVIGATION, DISCOVERY, AND COMMERCE, BY SEA AND LAND, FROM THE EARLIEST AGES TO THE PRESENT TIME.
ROBERT KERR, F.R.S. & F.A.S. EDIN.
ILLUSTRATED BY MAPS AND CHARTS.
WILLIAM BLACKWOOD, EDINBURGH:
AND T. CADELL, LONDON.
A GENERAL HISTORY AND COLLECTION OF VOYAGES AND TRAVELS,
ARRANGED IN SYSTEMATIC ORDER:
FORMING A COMPLETE HISTORY OF THE ORIGIN AND PROGRESS OF NAVIGATION, DISCOVERY, AND COMMERCE, BY SEA AND LAND, FROM THE EARLIEST AGES TO THE PRESENT TIME.
ROBERT KERR, F.R.S. & F.A.S. EDIN.
ILLUSTRATED BY MAPS AND CHARTS.
Printed by James Ballantyne & Co.
FOR WILLIAM BLACKWOOD, EDINBURGH; J. MURRAY, ALBEMARLE-STREET; BALDWIN, CRADOCK AND JOY, AND GALE AND FENNER, PATERNOSTER-ROW, LONDON; AND J. CUMMING, DUBLIN.
CONTENTS TO VOL. XVII.
CHAP. V. Continued. Captain King's Journal of the Transactions on returning to the Sandwich Islands.
SECT. VI. General Account of the Sandwich Islands. Their Number, Names, and Situation. OWHYHEE. Its Extent, and Division into Districts. Account of its Coasts, and the adjacent Country. Volcanic Appearances. Snowy Mountains. Their Height determined. Account of a Journey into the Interior Parts of the Country. MOWEE. TAHOOHOWA. MOROTOI. RANAI. WOAHOO. ATOOI. ONEEHEOW. OREEHOUA. TAAOORA. Climate. Winds. Currents. Tides. Animals and Vegetables. Astronomical Observations.
VII. General Account of the Sandwich Islands continued. Of the Inhabitants. Their Origin. Persons. Pernicious effects of the Ava. Numbers. Disposition and Manners. Reasons for supposing them not Cannibals. Dress and Ornaments. Villages and Houses. Food. Occupations and Amusements. Addicted to Gaming. Their extraordinary Dexterity in Swimming. Arts and Manufactures. Curious Specimens of their Sculpture. Kipparee, or Method of Painting Cloth. Mats. Fishing Hooks. Cordage. Salt Pans. Warlike Instruments.
SECT. VIII. General Account of the Sandwich Islands continued. Government. People divided into three Classes. Power of Erreetaboo. Genealogy of the Kings of Owhyhee and Mowee. Power of the Chiefs. State of the inferior Class. Punishment of Crimes. Religion. Society of Priests. The Orono. Their Idols. Songs chanted by the Chiefs, before they drink Ava. Human Sacrifices. Custom of Knocking out the fore Teeth. Notions with regard to a future State. Marriages. Remarkable Instance of Jealousy. Funeral Rites.
CHAP. VI. Transactions during the second Expedition to the North, by the way of Kamtschatka; and on the Return Home by the way of Canton and the Cape of Good Hope.
SECT. I. Departure from Oneheeow. Fruitless Attempt to discover Modoopapappa. Course steered for Awatska Bay. Occurrences during that Passage. Sudden Change from Heat to Cold. Distress occasioned by the Leaking of the Resolution. View of the Coast of Kamtschatka. Extreme Rigour of the Climate. Lose Sight of the Discovery. The Resolution enters the Bay of Awatska. Prospect of the Town of Saint Peter and Saint Paul. Party sent ashore. Their Reception by the Commanding-Officer of the Port. Message dispatched to the Commander at Bolcheretsk. Arrival of the Discovery. Return of the Messengers from the Commander. Extraordinary mode of Travelling. Visit from a Merchant and a German Servant belonging to the Commander.
II. Scarcity of Provisions and Stores at the Harbour of Saint Peter and Saint Paul; A Party set out to visit the Commander at Bolcheretsk. Passage up the River Awatska. Account of their Reception by the Toion of Karatchin. Description of Kamtschadale Dress. Journey on Sledges. Description of this Mode of Travelling. Arrival at Natcheekin. Account of Hot Springs. Embark on Bolchoireka. Reception at the Capital. Generous and hospitable Conduct of the Commander and the Garrison. Description of Bolcheretsk. Presents from the Commander. Russian and Kamtschadale Dancing. Affecting Departure from Bolcheretsk. Return to Saint Peter and Saint Paul's, accompanied by Major Behm, who visits the Ship. Generosity of the Sailors. Dispatches sent by Major Behm to Petersburg. His Departure and Character.
III. Continuation of Transactions in the Harbour of St Peter and St Paul. Abundance of Fish. Death of a Seaman belonging to the Resolution. The Russian Hospital put under the Care of the Ship's Surgeons. Supply of Flour and Cattle. Celebration of the King's Birth-day. Difficulties in Sailing out of the Bay. Eruption of a Volcano. Steer to the Northward. Cheepoonskoi Noss. Errors of the Russian Charts. Kamptschatskoi Noss. Island of St. Laurence. View, from the same Point, of the Coasts Asia and America, and the Islands of St. Diomede. Various Attempts to get to the North, between the two Continents. Obstructed by impenetrable Ice. Sea-horses and White Bears killed. Captain Clerke's Determination and future Designs.
IV. Fruitless Attempts to penetrate through Ice to the North-West. Dangerous Situation of the Discovery. Sea-horses killed. Fresh Obstructions from the Ice. Report of Damages, received by the Discovery. Captain Clerke's Determination to proceed to the Southward. Joy of the Ships' Crews on that Occasion. Pass Serdze Kamen. Return through Beering's Strait. Enquiry into the Extent of the North-East Coast of Asia. Reasons for rejecting Muller's Map of the Promontory of the Tschutski. Reasons for believing the Coast does not reach a higher Latitude than 70-2/3 deg. North. General Observations on the Impracticability of a North-East or North-West Passage from the Atlantic into the Pacific Ocean. Comparative View of the Progress made in the Years 1778 and 1779. Remarks on the Sea and Sea-coasts, North of Beering's Strait. History of the Voyage resumed. Pass the Island of St. Laurence. The Island of Mednoi. Death of Captain Clerke. Short Account of his Services.
V. Return to the Harbour of Saint Peter and Saint Paul. Promotion of Officers. Funeral of Captain Clerke. Damages of the Discovery repaired. Various other Occupations of the Ships' Crews. Letters from the Commander. Supply of Flour and Naval Stores from a Russian Galliot. Account of an Exile. Bear-hunting and Fishing Parties. Disgrace of the Serjeant. Celebration of the King's Coronation Day, and Visit from the Commander. The Serjeant reinstated. A Russian Soldier promoted at our Request. Remarks on the Discipline of the Russian Army. Church at Paratounca. Method of Bear-hunting. Farther Account of the Bears and Kamtschadales. Inscription to the Memory of Captain Clerke. Supply of Cattle. Entertainments on the Empress's Name Day. Present from the Commander. Attempt of a Marine to desert. Work out of the Bay. Nautical and Geographical Description of Awatska Bay. Astronomical Tables and Observations.
VI. General Account of Kamtschatka. Geographical Description. Rivers. Soil. Climate. Volcanoes. Hot Springs. Productions. Vegetables. Animals. Birds. Fish.
VII. General Account of Kamtschatka, continued. Of the Inhabitants. Origin of the Kamtschadales. Discovered by the Russians. Abstract of their History. Numbers. Present State. Of the Russian Commerce in Kamtschatka. Of the Kamtschadale Habitations, and Dress. Of the Kurile Islands. The Koreki. The Tschutski.
VIII. Plan of our future Proceedings. Course to the Southward, along the Coast of Kamtschatka. Cape Lopatka. Pass the Islands Shoomska and Paramousir. Driven to the Eastward of the Kuriles. Singular Situation with respect to the pretended Discoveries of former Navigators. Fruitless Attempts to reach the Islands North of Japan. Geographical Conclusions. View of the Coast of Japan. Run along the East Side. Pass two Japanese Vessels. Driven off the Coast by contrary Winds. Extraordinary Effect of Currents. Steer for the Bashees. Pass large Quantities of Pumice Stone. Discover Sulphur Island. Pass the Pratas. Isles of Lema, and Ladrone Island. Chinese Pilot taken on board the Resolution. Journals of the Officers and Men secured.
IX. Working up to Macao. A Chinese Comprador. Sent on Shore to visit the Portuguese Governor. Effects of the Intelligence we received from Europe. Anchor in the Typa. Passage up to Canton. Bocca Tygris. Wampu. Description of a Sampane. Reception at the English Factory. Instance of the suspicious Character of the Chinese. Of their Mode of trading. Of the City of Canton. Its Size. Population. Number of Sampanes. Military Force. Of the Streets and Houses. Visit to a Chinese. Return to Macao. Great Demand for the Sea-Otter Skins. Plan of a Voyage for opening a Fur-Trade on the Western Coast of America, and prosecuting further Discoveries in the Neighbourhood of Japan. Departure from Macao. Price of Provisions in China.
X. Leave the Typa. Orders of the Court of France respecting Captain Cook. Resolutions in consequence thereof. Strike Soundings on the Macclesfield Banks. Pass Pulo Sapata. Steer for Pulo Condore. Anchor at Pulo Condore. Transactions during our Stay. Journey to the principal Town. Receive a Visit from a Mandarin. Examine his Letters. Refreshments to be procured. Description, and present State of the Island. Its Produce. An Assertion of M. Sonnerat refuted. Astronomical and Nautical Observations.
XI. Departure from Pulo Condore. Pass the Straits of Banca. View of the Island of Sumatra. Straits of Sunda. Occurrences there. Description of the Island of Cracatoa. Prince's Island. Effects of the Climate of Java. Run to the Cape of Good Hope. Transactions there. Description of False Bay. Passage to the Orkneys. General Reflections.
Vocabulary of the Language of Nootka, or King George's Sound. April, 1778.
Table to shew the Affinity between the Languages Spoken at Oonalashka and Norton Sound, and those of the Greenlanders and Esquimaux.
APPENDIX, No. I. BYRON'S NARRATIVE.
The Author's Preface.
Chapter I. Account of the Wager and her Equipment. Captain Kid's Death. Succeeded by Captain Cheap. Our Disasters commence with our Voyage. We lose Sight of our Squadron in a Gale of Wind. Dreadful Storm. Ship strikes.
II. We land on a wild Shore. No Appearance of Inhabitants. One of our Lieutenants dies. Conduct of a Part of the Crew who remained on the Wreck. We name the Place of our Residence Mount Misery. Narrative of Transactions there. Indians appear in Canoes off the Coast. Description of them. Discontents amongst our People.
III. Unfortunate Death of Mr Cozens. Improper Conduct of Captain Cheap. The Indians join us in a friendly Manner, but depart presently on account of the Misconduct of our Men. Our Number dreadfully reduced by Famine. Description of the various Contrivances used for procuring Food. Further Transactions. Departure from the Island.
IV. Occurrences on our Voyage. We encounter bad Weather and various Dangers and Distresses. Leave a Part of our Crew behind on a desert Shore. A strange Cemetry discovered. Narrow Escape from Wreck. Return to Mount Misery. We are visited by a Chanos Indian Cacique, who talks Spanish, with whom we again take our Departure from the Island.
V. Navigation of the River. One of our Men dies from Fatigue. Inhumanity of the Captain. Description of our Passage through a horrible and desolate Country. Our Conductor leaves us, and a Party of our Men desert with the Boat. Dreadful Situation of the Remainder. The Cacique returns. Account of our Journey Overland. Kindness of two Indian Women. Description of the Indian Mode of Fishing. Cruel Treatment of my Indian Benefactress by her Husband.
VI. The Cacique's Conduct changes. Description of the Indian Mode of Bird-fowling. Their Religion. Mr Elliot, our Surgeon, dies. Transactions on our Journey. Miserable Situation to which we are reduced.
VII. We land on the Island of Chiloe. To our great Joy we at length discover Something having the Appearance of a House. Kindness of the Natives. We are delivered to the Custody of a Spanish Guard. Transactions with the Spanish Residents. Arrival at Chaco. Manners of the Inhabitants.
VIII. Adventure with the Niece of an old Priest at Castro. Superstition of the People. The Lima Ship arrives, in which we depart for Valparaiso, January 1743. Arrival at and Treatment there. Journey to Chili. Arrival at St. Jago. Generous Conduct of a Scotch Physician. Description of the City and of the People.
IX. Account of the Bull Feasts and other Amusements. Occurrences during nearly two Years Residence. In December, 1744, we embark for Europe in the Lys French Frigate. The Vessel leaky. Dangerous Voyage. Narrow Escape from English Cruizers. Arrival in England. Conclusion
APPENDIX, No. II. BULKELEY'S NARRATIVE.
A GENERAL HISTORY AND COLLECTION OF VOYAGES AND TRAVELS.
PART III. BOOK III. (CONTINUED.)
CHAPTER V. CONTINUED.
CAPTAIN KING'S JOURNAL OF THE TRANSACTIONS ON RETURNING TO THE SANDWICH ISLANDS.
General Account of the Sandwich Islands.—Their Number, Names, and Situation.—OWHYHEE.—Its Extent, and Division into Districts.—Account of its Coasts, and the adjacent Country.—Volcanic Appearances.—Snowy Mountains.—Their Height determined.—Account of a Journey into the Interior Parts of the Country.—MOWEE.—TAHOOROWA.—MOROTOI.—RANAI.— WOAHOO.—ATOOI.—ONEEHEOW.—OBEEHOUA.—TAHOORA.—Climate.—Winds.— Currents.—Tides.—Animals and Vegetables.—Astronomical Observations.
As we are now about to take our final leave of the Sandwich Islands, it will not be improper to introduce here some general account of their situation and natural history, and of the manners and customs of the inhabitants.
This subject has indeed been, in some measure, preoccupied by persons far more capable of doing it justice than I can pretend to be. Had Captain Cook and Mr Anderson lived to avail themselves of the advantages which we enjoyed by a return to these islands, it cannot be questioned, that the public would have derived much additional information from the skill and diligence of two such accurate observers. The reader will therefore lament with me our common misfortune, which hath deprived him of the labours of such superior abilities, and imposed on me the task of presenting him with the best supplementary account the various duties of my station permitted me to furnish.
This group consists of eleven islands, extending in latitude from 18 deg. 54' to 22 deg. 15' N., and in longitude from 199 deg. 36' to 205 deg. 06' E. They are called by the natives, 1. Owhyhee. 2. Mowee. 3. Ranai, or Oranai. 4. Morotinnee, or Morokinnee. 5. Kahowrowee, or Tahoorowa. 6. Morotoi, or Morokoi. 7. Woahoo, or Oahoo. 8. Atooi, Atowi, or Towi, and sometimes Kowi. 9. Neeheehow, or Oneeheow. 10. Oreehona, or Reehoua; and, 11. Tahoora; and are all inhabited, excepting Morotinnee and Tahoora. Besides the islands above enumerated, we were told by the Indians, that there is another called Modoopapapa, or Komodoopapapa, lying to the W.S.W. of Tahoora, which is low and sandy, and visited only for the purpose of catching turtle and sea-fowl; and, as I could never learn that they knew of any others, it is probable that none exist in their neighbourhood.
They were named by Captain Cook the Sandwich Islands, in honour of the EARL OF SANDWICH, under whose administration he had enriched geography with so many splendid and important discoveries; a tribute justly due to that noble person for the liberal support these voyages derived from his power, in whatever could extend their utility, or promote their success; for the zeal with which he seconded the views of that great navigator; and, if I may be allowed to add the voice of private gratitude, for the generous protection, which, since the death of their unfortunate commander, he has afforded all the officers that served under him.
Owhyhee, the easternmost, and by much the largest of these islands, is of a triangular shape, and nearly equilateral. The angular points make the north, east, and south extremities, of which the northern is in latitude 20 deg. 17' N., longitude 204 deg. 02' E.; the eastern in latitude 19 deg. 34' N., longitude 205 deg. 06' E.; and the southern extremity in latitude 18 deg. 54' N., longitude 204 deg. 15' E. Its greatest length, which lies in a direction nearly north and south, is 23-1/2 leagues; its breadth is 24 leagues; and it is about 255 geographical, or 293 English miles in circumference. The whole island is divided into six large districts; Amakooa and Aheedoo, which lie on the north-east side; Apoona and Kaoo on the south-east; Akona and Koaarra on the west.
The districts of Amakooa and Aheedoo are separated by a mountain called Mounah Kaah (or the mountain Kaah), which rises in three peaks, perpetually covered with snow, and may be clearly seen at 40 leagues distance.
To the north of this mountain the coast consists of high and abrupt cliffs, down which fall many beautiful cascades of water. We were once flattered with the hopes of meeting with a harbour round a bluff head, in latitude 20 deg. 10' N., and longitude 204 deg. 26' E.; but, on doubling the point, and standing close in, we found it connected by a low valley, with another high head to the north-west. The country rises inland with a gentle ascent, is intersected by deep narrow glens, or rather chasms, and appeared to be well cultivated and sprinkled over with a number of villages. The snowy mountain is very steep, and the lower part of it covered with wood.
The coast of Aheedoo, which lies to the south of Mouna Kaah, is of a moderate height, and the interior parts appear more even than the country to the north-west, and less broken by ravines. Off these two districts we cruised for almost a month; and, whenever our distance from shore would permit it, were sure of being surrounded by canoes laden with all kinds of refreshments. We had frequently a very heavy sea, and great swell on this side of the island; and as we had no soundings, and could observe much foul ground off the shore, we never approached nearer the land than two or three leagues, excepting on the occasion already mentioned.
The coast to the north-east of Apoona, which forms the eastern extremity of the island, is low and flat; the acclivity of the inland parts is very gradual, and the whole country covered with cocoa-nut and bread-fruit trees. This, as far as we could judge, is the finest part of the island, and we were afterward told that the king had a place of residence here. At the south-west extremity the hills rise abruptly from the sea side, leaving but a narrow border of low ground toward the beach. We were pretty near the shore at this part of the island, and found the sides of the hills covered with a fine verdure; but the country seemed to be very thinly inhabited. On doubling the east point of the island, we came in sight of another snowy mountain, called Mouna Roa (or the extensive mountain), which continued to be a very conspicuous object all the while we were sailing along the south- east side. It is flat at the top, making what is called by mariners table- land; the summit was constantly buried in snow, and we once saw its sides also slightly covered for a considerable way down; but the greatest part of this disappeared again in a few days.
According to the tropical line of snow, as determined by Mr. Condamine, from observations taken on the Cordilleras, this mountain must be at least 16,020 feet high, which exceeds the height of the Pico de Teyde, or Peak of Teneriffe, by 724 feet, according to Dr. Heberden's computation, or 3,680, according to that of the Chevalier de Borda. The peaks of Mouna Kaah appeared to be about half a mile high; and as they are entirely covered with snow, the altitude of their summits cannot be less than 18,400 feet. But it is probable that both these mountains may be considerably higher. For in insular situations, the effects of the warm sea air must necessarily remove the line of snow in equal latitudes, to a greater height than where the atmosphere is chilled on all sides by an immense tract of perpetual snow.
The coast of Kaoo presents a prospect of the most horrid and dreary kind; the whole country appearing to have undergone a total change from the effects of some dreadful convulsion. The ground is every where covered with cinders, and intersected in many places with black streaks, which seem to mark the course of a lava that has flowed, not many ages back, from the mountain Roa to the shore. The southern promontory looks like the mere dregs of a volcano. The projecting head-land is composed of broken and craggy rocks, piled irregularly on one another, and terminating in sharp points.
Notwithstanding the dismal aspect of this part of the island, there are many villages scattered over it, and it certainly is much more populous than the verdant mountains of Apoona. Nor is this circumstance hard to be accounted for. As these islanders have no cattle, they have consequently no use for pasturage, and therefore naturally prefer such ground as either lies more convenient for fishing, or is best suited to the cultivation of yams and plantains. Now amidst these ruins, there are many patches of rich soil, which are carefully laid out in plantations, and the neighbouring sea abounds with a variety of most excellent fish, with which, as well as with other provisions, we were always plentifully supplied. Off this part of the coast we could find no ground, at less than a cable's length from the shore, with a hundred and sixty fathoms of line, excepting in a small bight to the eastward of the south point, where we had regular soundings of fifty and fifty-eight fathoms over a bottom of fine sand. Before we proceed to the western districts, it may be necessary to remark, that the whole east side of the island, from the northern to the southern extremity, does not afford the smallest harbour or shelter for shipping.
The south-west parts of Akona are in the same state with the adjoining district of Kaoo; but farther to the north, the country has been cultivated with great pains, and is extremely populous.
In this part of the island is situated Karakakooa Bay, which has been already described. Along the coast nothing is seen but large masses of slag, and the fragments of black scorched rocks; behind which, the ground rises gradually for about two miles and a half, and appears to have been formerly covered with loose burnt stones. These the natives have taken the pains of clearing away, frequently to the depth of three feet and upward; which labour, great as it is, the fertility of the soil amply repays. Here in a rich ashy mould, they cultivate sweet potatoes and the cloth-plant. The fields are enclosed with stone-fences, and are interspersed with groves of cocoa-nut trees. On the rising ground beyond these, the bread-fruit trees are planted, and flourish with the greatest luxuriance.
Koaara extends from the westernmost point to the northern extremity of the island; the whole coast between them forming an extensive bay, called Toe- yah-yah, which is bounded to the north by two very conspicuous hills. Toward the bottom of this bay there is foul corally ground, extending upward of a mile from the shore, without which the soundings are regular, with good anchorage, in twenty fathoms. The country, as far as the eye could reach, seemed fruitful and well inhabited, the soil being in appearance of the same kind with the district of Kaoo; but no fresh water is to be got here.
I have hitherto confined myself to the coasts of this island, and the adjacent country, which is all that I had an opportunity of being acquainted with from my own observation. The only account I can give of the interior parts, is from the information I obtained from a party, who set out on the afternoon of the 26th of January, on an expedition up the country, with an intention of penetrating as far as they could; and principally of reaching, if possible, the snowy mountains.
Having procured two natives to serve them as guides, they left the village about four o'clock in the afternoon, directing their course a little to the southward of the east. To the distance of three or four miles from the bay, they found the country as before described; the hills afterward rose with a more sudden ascent, which brought them to the extensive plantations that terminate the view of the country, as seen from the ships.
These plantations consist of the tarrow, or eddy root, and the sweet potatoe, with plants of the cloth tree, neatly set out in rows. The walls that separate them are made of the loose burnt stones, which are got in clearing the ground; and being entirely concealed by sugar-canes, planted close on each side, make the most beautiful fences that can be conceived. The party stopped for the night at the second hut they found amongst the plantations, where they judged themselves to be about six or seven miles from the ships. They described the prospect from this spot as very delightful; they saw the ships in the bay before them; to the left a continued range of villages, interspersed with groves of cocoa-nut trees, spreading along the sea-shore; a thick wood stretching out of sight behind them; and to the right an extent of ground, laid out in regular and well- cultivated plantations, as far as the eye could reach.
Near this spot, at a distance from any other dwelling, the natives pointed out to them the residence of a hermit, who, they said, had formerly been a great chief and warrior, but had long ago quitted the shores of the island, and now never stirred from his cottage. They prostrated themselves as they approached him, and afterward presented to him a part of such provisions as they had brought with them. His behaviour was easy and cheerful; he scarce shewed any marks of astonishment at the sight of our people, and though pressed to accept some of our curiosities, he declined the offer, and soon withdrew to his cottage. He was described as by far the oldest person any of the party had ever seen, and judged to be, by those who computed his age at the lowest, upward of 100 years old.
As our people had imagined the mountain not to be more than ten or twelve miles from the bay, and consequently that they should reach it with ease early the next morning, an error into which its great height had probably led them, they were now much surprised to find the distance scarce perceptibly diminished. This circumstance, together with the uninhabited state of the country they were going to enter, made it necessary to procure a supply of provisions; and for that purpose they dispatched one of their guides back to the village. Whilst they were waiting his return, they were joined by some of Kaoo's servants, whom that benevolent old man had sent after them, as soon as he heard of their journey, laden with refreshments, and authorised, as their route lay through his grounds, to demand and take away whatever they might have occasion for.
Our travellers were much astonished to find the cold here so intense; but having no thermometer with them, could judge of it only by their feelings, which, from the warm atmosphere they had left, must have been a very fallacious measure. They found it, however, so cold, that they could get but little sleep, and the natives none at all; both parties being disturbed, the whole night, by continued coughing. As they could not, at this time, be at any very considerable height, the distance from the sea being only six or seven miles, and part of the road on a very moderate ascent, this extraordinary degree of cold must be ascribed to the easterly wind blowing fresh over the snowy mountains.
Early on the 27th they set out again, and filled their calibashes at an excellent well about half a mile from their hut. Having passed the plantations, they came to a thick wood, which they entered by a path made for the convenience of the natives, who go thither to fetch the wild or horse-plantain, and to catch birds. Their progress now became very slow, and attended with much labour; the ground being either swampy, or covered with large stones; the path narrow, and frequently interrupted by trees lying across it, which it was necessary to climb over, the thickness of the underwood on both sides making it impossible to pass round them. In these woods they observed, at small distances, pieces of white cloth fixed on poles, which they supposed to be land-marks for the division of property, as they only met with them where the wild plantains grew. The trees, which are of the same kind with those we called the spice-tree at New Holland, were lofty and straight, and from two to four feet in circumference.
After they had advanced about ten miles in the wood, they had the mortification to find themselves, on a sudden, within sight of the sea, and at no great distance from it; the path having turned imperceptibly to the southward, and carried them to the right of the mountain, which it was their object to reach. Their disappointment was greatly increased by the uncertainty they were now under of its true bearings, since they could not, at this time, get a view of it from the top of the highest trees. They, therefore, found themselves obliged to walk back six or seven miles to an unoccupied hut, where they had left three of the natives and two of their own people, with the small stock that remained of their provisions. Here they spent the second night; and the air was so very sharp, and so little to the liking of their guides, that, by the morning, they had all departed, except one.
The want of provisions now making it necessary to return to some of the cultivated parts of the island, they quitted the wood by the same path they had entered it; and, on their arrival at the plantations, were surrounded by the natives, of whom they purchased a fresh stock of necessaries; and prevailed upon two of them to supply the place of the guides that were gone away. Having obtained the best information in their power, with regard to the direction of their road, the party, being now nine in number, marched along the skirts of the wood for six or seven miles, and then entered it again by a path that bore to the eastward. For the first three miles they passed through a forest of lofty spice-trees, growing on a strong rich loam; at the back of which they found an equal extent of low shrubby trees, with much thick underwood, on a bottom of loose burnt stones. This led them to a second forest of spice-trees, and the same rich brown soil, which was again succeeded by a barren ridge of the same nature with the former. This alternate succession may, perhaps, afford matter of curious speculation to naturalists. The only additional circumstance I could learn relating to it was, that these ridges appeared, as far as they could be seen, to run in directions parallel to the sea-shore, and to have Mouna Roa for their centre.
In passing through the woods they found many canoes half-finished, and here and there a hut; but saw none of the inhabitants. Having penetrated near three miles into the second wood, they came to two huts, where they stopped, exceedingly fatigued with the day's journey, having walked not less than twenty miles, according to their own computation. As they had met with no springs, from the time they left the plantation-ground, and began to suffer much from the violence of their thirst, they were obliged, before the night came on, to separate into parties, and go in search of water; and, at last, found some left by rain in the bottom of an unfinished canoe, which, though of the colour of red wine, was to them no unwelcome discovery. In the night, the cold was still more intense than they had found it before; and though they had wrapped themselves up in mats and cloths of the country, and kept a large fire between the two huts, they could yet sleep but very little, and were obliged to walk about the greatest part of the night. Their elevation was now probably pretty considerable, as the ground on which they had travelled had been generally on the ascent.
On the 29th, at day-break, they set out, intending to make their last and utmost effort to reach the snowy mountain; but their spirits were much depressed, when they found they had expended the miserable pittance of water they had found the night before. The path, which extended no farther than where canoes had been built, was now at an end; and they were therefore obliged to make their way as well as they could; every now and then climbing up into the highest trees, to explore the country round. At eleven o'clock, they came to a ridge of burnt stones, from the top of which they saw the snowy mountain, appearing to be about twelve or fourteen miles from them.
It was here deliberated, whether they should proceed any further, or rest satisfied with the view they now had of Mouna Rao. The road, ever since the path ceased, had become exceedingly fatiguing; and every step they advanced was growing still more so. The deep chinks, with which the ground was every where broken, being slightly covered with moss, made them stumble at almost every step; and the intermediate space was a surface of loose burnt stones, which broke under their feet like potsherds. They threw stones into several of these chinks, which, by the noise they made, seemed to fall to a considerable depth, and the ground sounded hollow under their feet. Besides these discouraging circumstances, they found their guides so averse to going on, that they believed, whatever their own determinations might have been, they could not have prevailed on them to remain out another night. They therefore at last agreed to return to the ships, after taking a view of the country, from the highest trees which the place afforded. From this elevation they saw themselves surrounded, on all sides, with wood toward the sea; they could not distinguish, in the horizon, the sky from the water; and between them and the snowy mountain, was a valley about seven or eight miles broad, above which the mountain appeared only as a hill of a moderate size.
They rested this night at a hut in the second wood, and, on the 30th, before noon, they had got clear of the first, and found themselves about nine miles to the north-east of the ships, toward which they directed their march through the plantations. As they passed along, they did not observe a single spot of ground that was capable of improvement left unplanted; and indeed it appeared, from their account, hardly possible for the country to be cultivated to greater advantage for the purposes of the inhabitants, or made to yield them a larger supply of necessaries for their subsistence. They were surprised to meet with several fields of hay; and, on enquiring to what uses it was applied, were told, it was designed to cover the young tarrow grounds, in, order to preserve them from being scorched by the sun. They saw a few scattered huts amongst the plantations, which served for occasional shelter to the labourers; but no villages at a greater distance than four or five miles from the sea. Near one of them, about four miles from the bay, they found a cave, forty fathoms long, three broad, and of the same height. It was open at both ends; the sides were fluted, as if wrought with a chisel, and the surface glazed over, probably by the action of fire.
Having given this account of the most material circumstances that occurred on the expedition to the snowy mountain, I shall now return to the other islands that remain to be described.
The island next in size and nearest in situation to Owhyhee, is Mowee, which lies at the distance of eight leagues N.N.W. from the, former, and is one hundred and forty geographical miles in circumference. A low isthmus divides it into two circular peninsulas, of which that to the east is called Whamadooa, and is double the size of the western peninsula called Owhyrookoo. The mountains in both rise to an exceeding great height, having been seen by us at the distance of upward of thirty leagues. The northern shores, like those of Owhyhee, afford no soundings; and the country presents the same appearance of verdure and fertility. To the south-east, between this and the adjacent isles, we had regular depths with a hundred and fifty fathoms, with a sandy bottom. From the west point, which is low, runs a shoal, stretching out toward Ranai, to a considerable distance; and to the southward of this is a fine spacious bay, with a sandy beach, shaded with cocoa-nut trees. It is probable that good anchorage might be found here, with shelter from the prevailing winds, and that the beach affords a convenient place for landing. The country behind presents a most romantic appearance. The hills rise almost perpendicularly, in a great variety of peaked forms; and their steep sides, and the deep chasms between them, are covered with trees, amongst which those of the bread-fruit were observed particularly to abound. The tops of these hills are entirely bare, and of a reddish brown colour. We were informed by the natives that there is a harbour to the southward of the east point, which they affirmed to be superior to that of Karakakooa; and we were also told, that, on the north- west side, there was another harbour, called Keepookeepoo.
Tahoorowa is a small island lying off the S.W. part of Mowee, from which it is distant three leagues. This island is destitute of wood, and the soil seems to be sandy and barren. Between Tahowrowa and Mowee lies the small uninhabited island Morrotinnee.
Morotoi is only two leagues and a half from Mowee to the W.N.W. The south- western coast, which was the only part near which we approached, is very low, but the land rises backward to a considerable height; and, at the distance from which we saw it, appeared to be entirely without wood. Its produce, we are told, consists chiefly of yams. It may, probably, have fresh water, and on the south and west sides, the coast forms several bays that promise good shelter from the trade-winds.
Ranai is about three leagues distant from Mowee and Morotoi, and lies to the S.W. of the passage between these islands. The country to the S. is high and craggy; but the other parts of the island had a better aspect, and appeared to be well inhabited. We were told that it produces very few plantains and bread-fruit trees; but that it abounds in roots, such as yams, sweet potatoes, and tarrow.
Woahoo lies to the N.W. of Morotoi, at the distance of about seven leagues. As far as we could judge from the appearance of the N.E. and N.W. parts, (for we saw nothing of the southern side,) it is by far the finest island of the whole group. Nothing can exceed the verdure of the hills, the variety of wood and lawn, and rich cultivated vallies, which the whole face of the country displayed. Having already given a description of the bay, formed by the N. and W. extremities, in which we came to an anchor, I have only to observe, that in the bight of the bay, to the S. of the anchoring- place, we found rocky foul ground, two miles from the shore. Should the ground tackling of a ship be weak, and the wind blow strong from the N., to which quarter the road is entirely open, this circumstance might be attended with some danger; but with good cables there would be little risk, as the ground from the anchoring-place, which is opposite to the valley through which the river runs to the N. point, is a fine sand.
Atooi lies to the N.W. of Woahoo, and is distant from it about twenty-five leagues. The face of the country to the N.E. and N.W., is broken and ragged, but to the S. it is more even; the hills rise with a gentle slope from the seaside, and, at some distance back, are covered with wood. Its productions are the same with those of the other islands; but the inhabitants far surpass all the neighbouring islanders in the management of their plantations. In the low grounds, adjoining to the bay where we lay at anchor, these plantations were divided by deep and regular ditches; the fences were made with a neatness approaching to elegance, and the roads through them were thrown up and finished in a manner that would have done credit to any European engineer.
Oneeheow lies five leagues to the westward of Atooi. The eastern coast is high, and rises abruptly from the sea, but the rest of the island consists of low ground, excepting a round bluff head on the S.E. point. It produces abundance of yams, and of the sweet root called Tee, but we got from it no other sort of provisions.
Oreehow aad Tahoora are two small islands in the neighbourhood of Oneeheow. The former is a single high hummock, joined by a reef of coral rocks to the northern extremity of Oneeheow. The latter lies to the S.W., and is uninhabited.
The climate of the Sandwich islands differs very little from that of the West India islands, which lie in the same latitude. Upon the whole, perhaps, it may be rather more temperate. The thermometer on shore in Karakakooa Bay, never rose higher than 88 deg., and that but one day; its mean height at noon was 83 deg.. In Wymoa Bay, its mean height at noon was 76 deg., and when out at sea 75 deg.. The mean height of the thermometer at noon, in Jamaica, is about 86 deg., at sea 80 deg..
Whether they be subject to the same violent winds and hurricanes, we could not discover, as we were not there in, any of the stormy months. However, as the natives gave us no positive testimony of the fact, and no traces of their effects were any where visible, it is probable that, in this respect, they resemble the Society and Friendly islands, which are, in a great measure, free from these dreadful visitations.
During the four winter months that we remained amongst these islands, there was more rain, especially in the interior parts, than usually falls during the dry season in the islands of the West Indies. We generally saw clouds collecting round the tops of the hills, and producing rain to leeward; but after they are separated from the land by the wind, they disperse and are lost, and others succeed in their place. This happened daily at Owhyhee; the mountainous parts being generally enveloped in a cloud; successive showers falling in the inland country, with fine weather, and a clear sky at the sea-shore.
The winds in general were from E.S.E. to N.E.; though they sometimes varied a few points each way to the N. and S, but these were light, and of short duration. In the harbour of Karakakooa we had a constant land and sea- breeze every day and night.
The currents seemed very uncertain, sometimes setting to windward, and at other times to leeward, without any regularity. They did not appear to be governed by the winds, nor any other cause that I can assign; they frequently set to windward against a fresh breeze.
The tides are very regular, flowing and ebbing six hours each. The flood comes from the eastward; and it is high water, at the full and change of the moon, forty-five minutes past three, apparent time. Their greatest rise is two feet seven inches; and we always observed the water to be four inches higher when the moon was above the horizon, than when it was below.
The quadrupeds in these, as in all the other islands that have been discovered in the South Sea, are confined to three sorts, dogs, hogs, and rats. The dogs are of the same species with those of Otaheite, having short crooked legs, long backs, and pricked ears. I did not observe any variety in them, except in their skins, some having long and rough hair, and others being quite smooth. They are about the size of a common turnspit, exceedingly sluggish in their nature, though perhaps this may be more owing to the manner in which they are treated, than to any natural disposition in them. They are in general fed and left to herd with the hogs; and I do not recollect one instance in which a dog was made a companion in the manner we do in Europe. Indeed the custom of eating them is an inseparable bar to their admission into society; and, as there are neither beasts of prey in the island, nor objects of chase, it is probable that the social qualities of the dog, its fidelity, attachment, and sagacity, will remain unknown to the natives.
The number of dogs in these islands did not appear to be nearly equal, in proportion, to those in Otaheite. But on the other hand, they abound much more in hogs; and the breed is of a larger and weightier kind. The supply of provisions of this kind which we got from them was really astonishing. We were near four months, either cruising off the coast, or in harbour at Owhyhee. During all this time, a large allowance of fresh pork was constantly served to both crews, so that our consumption was computed at about sixty puncheons of five hundred weight each. Besides this, and the incredible waste which, in the midst of such plenty, was not to be guarded against, sixty puncheons more were salted for sea-store. The greatest part of this supply was drawn from the island of Owhyhee alone, and yet we could not perceive that it was at all drained, or even that the abundance had any way decreased.
The birds of these islands are as beautiful as any we have seen during the voyage, and are numerous, though not various. There are four, which seem to belong to the trochili, or honey-suckers of Linnaeus; one of which is something larger than a bullfinch; its colour is a fine glossy black, the rump, vent, and thighs, a deep yellow. It is called by the natives hoohoo. Another is of an exceedingly bright scarlet colour; the wings black, and edged with white, and the tail black; its native name is eeeeve. A third, which seems to be either a young bird, or a variety of the foregoing, is variegated with red, brown, and yellow. The fourth is entirely green, with a tinge of yellow, and is called akaiearooa. There is a species of thrush, with a grey breast, and a small bird of the flycatcher kind; a rail, with very short wings and no tail, which, on that account, we named rallus ecaudatus. Ravens are found here, but they are very scarce; their colour is dark-brown, inclining to black, and their note is different from the European. Here are two small birds, both of one genus, that are very common; one is red, and generally seen about the cocoa-nut trees, particularly when they are in flower, from whence it seems to derive great part of its subsistence, the other is green; the tongues of both are long and ciliated, or fringed at the tip. A bird with a yellow head, which, from the structure of its beak, we called a parroquet, is likewise very common. It however by no means belongs to that tribe, but greatly resembles the lexia flavicans, or yellowish cross-bill of Linnaeus.
Here are also owls, plovers of two sorts, one very like the whistling plover of Europe; a large white pigeon; a bird with a long tail, whose colour is black, the vent and feathers under the wing (which is much longer than is usually seen in the generality of birds, except the birds of paradise) are yellow; and the common water or darker hen.
Their vegetable productions are nearly the same with the rest of the South Sea islands. I have before mentioned. that the tarrow root is much superior to any we had before tasted, and that we attributed this excellence to the dry method of cultivating it. The bread-fruit trees thrive here, not in such abundance, but produce double the quantity of fruit they do on the rich plains of Otaheite. The trees are nearly of the same height, but the branches begin to strike out from the trunk much lower, and with greater luxuriance. Their sugar-canes are also of a very unusual size. One of them was brought to us at Atooi, measuring eleven inches and a quarter in circumference, and having fourteen feet eatable.
At Oneeheow they brought us several large roots of a brown colour, shaped like a yam, and from six to ten pounds in weight. The juice, which it yields in great abundance, is very sweet, and of a pleasant taste, and was found to be an excellent substitute for sugar. The natives are very fond of it, and use it as an article of their common diet; and our people also found it very palatable and wholesome. We could not learn to what species of plant it belonged, having never been able to procure the leaves; but it was supposed, by our botanists, to be the root of some kind of fern.
Agreeably to the practice of Captain Cook, I shall subjoin an abstract of the astronomical observations which were made at the observatory in Karakakooa Bay, for determining its latitude and longitude, and for finding the rate and error of the time-keeper. To these are subjoined the mean variation of the compass, the dip of the magnetic needle, and a table of the latitude and longitude of the Sandwich Islands.
The latitude of the observatory, deduced from meridian zenith distances of the sun, eleven stars to the south, and four stars to the north of the zenith 19 deg. 28' 0" N. The longitude of the observatory, deduced from 253 sets of lunar observations; each set consisting of six observed distances of the moon from the sun or stars; 14 of the above sets were only taken at the observatory, 105 sets being taken whilst cruising off Owhyhee, and 134 sets when at Atooi and Oneeheow, all these being reduced to the observatory, by means of the timekeeper 204 deg. 0' 0" E. The longitude of the observatory, by the time-keeper, on the 19th January, 1779, according to its rate, as found at Greenwich 214 deg. 7' 15' E. The longitude of the observatory, by the time-keeper, on the 19th January, 1779, according to its rate, corrected at different places, and last at Samganoodha Harbour, in Oonalaschka 203 deg. 37' 22" E. The daily rate of the time-keeper losing on mean time, was 9",6; and, on the 2d February, 1779, it was 14^h 41' 1" too slow for mean time. The variation of the compass, by azimuths, observed on shore with four different compasses 8 6 0 E. The variation of the compass, by azimuths, observed on board the Resolution, with four different compasses 7 32 0 E. Dip of the north /Balanced needle 40 22 30 E. pole of the magnetic needle on Unbalanced, or shore, with plain needle / 40 41 15 E. Dip of the north /Balanced needle 41 50 0 E. pole of the magnetic needle on Unbalanced 40 30 5 E. board, with needle /
A Table of the Latitude and Longitude of the Sandwich Islands.
Latitude. Longitude. /The north point 20 deg. 17' 204 deg. 2' Owhyhee South point 18 55 204 15 East point 19 35 205 6 Karakakooa Bay 19 28 204 0 /East point 20 50 204 4 Mowee < South point 20 34 203 48 West point 20 54 203 24 Morokinnee 20 39 203 33 Tahoorowa 20 38 203 27 Kanai. South point 20 46 203 8 Morotoi. West point 21 10 202 46 Woahoo. Anchoring-place. 21 43 202 9 Atooi. Wymoa Bay 21 57 200 20 Oneeheow. Anchoring-place. 21 50 199 45 Oreehoua 22 2 199 52 Tahoora 21 43 199 56
 The general account of the Sandwich Islands given by Captain King, has been substantially confirmed by subsequent voyagers. Some additional particulars, not by any means very important, have resulted from their enquiries, from which, of course, it had been easy to have enlarged the present and two following sections, by supplementary notes. But no good end would be answered by such a practice in the present case, as the description in the text is abundantly complete for every important purpose, and as it is probable, that, in the course of this work, there will occur opportunities of communicating whatever is valuable in the narratives of more recent voyagers.—E.
 It is to be observed, that, among the windward islands, the k is used instead of the t, as Morokoi instead of Morotoi, &c.
 Modoo signifies island; papapa, flat. This island is called Tammatapappa by Captain Cook.
 Both the sweet potatoes, and the tarrow, are here planted four feet from each other; the former was earthed up almost to the top of the stalk, with about half a bushel of light mould; the latter is left bare to the root, and the mould round it is made in the form of a basin, in order to hold the rain-water, as this root requires a certain degree of moisture. It has been before observed, that the tarrow, at the Friendly and Society Islands, was always planted in low and moist situations, and generally where there was the convenience of a rivulet to flood it. It was imagined that this mode of culture was absolutely necessary; but we now found, that, with the precaution above-mentioned, it succeeds equally well in a drier situation; indeed, we all remarked, that the tarrow of the Sandwich Islands is the best we had ever tasted. The plantains are not admitted in these plantations: but grow amongst the bread-fruit trees.
General Account of the Sandwich Islands continued.—Of the Inhabitants.— Their Origin.—Persons.—Pernicious Effects of the Ava.—Numbers.— Disposition and Manners.—Reasons for supposing them not Cannibals.—Dress and Ornaments.—Villages and Houses.—Food.—Occupations and Amusements.— Addicted to Gaming.—Their extraordinary Dexterity in Swimming.—Arts and Manufactures.—Curious Specimens of their Sculpture.—Kipparee, or Method of Painting Cloth.—Mats.—Fishing Hooks.—Cordage.—Salt Pans.—Warlike Instruments.
The inhabitants of the Sandwich Islands are undoubtedly of the same race with those of New Zealand, the Society and Friendly Islands, Easter Island, and the Marquesas; a race that possesses, without any intermixture, all the known lands between the latitudes of 47 deg. S. and 20 deg. N., and between the longitudes of 184 deg. and 260 deg. E. This fact, which, extraordinary as it is, might be thought sufficiently proved by the striking similarity of their manners and customs, and the general resemblance of their persons, is established, beyond all controversy, by the absolute identity of their language.
From what continent they originally emigrated, and by what steps they have spread through so vast a space, those who are curious in disquisitions of this nature, may perhaps not find it very difficult to conjecture. It has been already observed, that they bear strong marks of affinity to some of the Indian tribes that inhabit the Ladrones and Caroline islands; and the same affinity may again be traced amongst the Battas and Malays. When these events happened, is not so easy to ascertain; it was probably not very lately, as they are extremely populous, and have no tradition of their own origin, but what is perfectly fabulous; whilst, on the other hand, the unadulterated state of their general language, and the similarity which still prevails in their customs and manners, seem to indicate that it could not have been at any very distant period.
The natives of these islands are in general above the middle size, and well made; they walk very gracefully, run nimbly, and are capable of bearing great fatigue; though, upon the whole, the men are somewhat inferior, in point of strength and activity, to the Friendly islanders, and the women less delicately limbed than those of Otaheite. Their complexion is rather darker than that of the Otaheitans, and they are not altogether so handsome a people. However, many of both sexes had fine open countenances, and the women, in particular, had good eyes and teeth, and a sweetness and sensibility of look, which rendered them very engaging. Their hair is of a brownish black, and neither uniformly straight, like that of the Indians of America, nor uniformly curling, as amongst the African negroes, but varying in this respect like the hair of Europeans. One striking peculiarity in the features of every part of this great nation, I do not remember to have seen any where mentioned; which is, that even in the handsomest faces, there is always a fulness of the nostrils, without any flatness or spreading of the nose, that distinguishes them from Europeans. It is not improbable that this may be the effect of their usual mode of salutation, which is performed by pressing the ends of their noses together.
The same superiority that is observable in the persons of the Erees, through all the other islands, is found also here. Those whom we saw were, without exception, perfectly well formed; whereas the lower sort, besides their general inferiority, are subject to all the variety of make and figure that is seen in the populace of other countries. Instances of deformity are more frequent here than in any of the other islands. Whilst we were cruising off Owhyhee, two dwarfs came on board, one an old man, four feet two inches high, but exactly proportioned, and the other a woman, nearly of the same height. We afterward saw three natives who were hump- backed, and a young man born without hands or feet. Squinting is also very common amongst them; and a man who, they said, had been born blind, was brought to us to be cured. Besides these particular imperfections, they are, in general, very subject to boils and ulcers, which we attributed to the great quantity of salt they eat with their flesh and fish. The Erees are very free from these complaints, but many of them suffer still more dreadful effects from the immoderate use of the ava. Those who were the most affected by it, had their bodies covered with a white scurf, their eyes red and inflamed, their limbs emaciated, the whole frame trembling and paralytic, accompanied with a disability to raise the head. Though this drug does not appear universally to shorten life, as was evident from the cases of Terreeoboo, Kaoo, and some other chiefs, who were very old men, yet it invariably brings on an early and decrepid old age. It is fortunate that the use of it is made one of the peculiar privileges of the chiefs. The young son of Terreeoboo, who was about twelve years old, used to boast of his being admitted to drink ava, and shewed us, with great triumph, a small spot in his side that was growing scaly.
There is something very singular in the history of this pernicious drug. When Captain Cook first visited the Society Islands, it was very little known among them. On his second voyage, he found the use of it very prevalent at Ulietea, but it had still gained very little ground at Otaheite. When we were last there, the dreadful havoc it had made was beyond belief, insomuch, that the captain scarce knew many of his old acquaintances. At the Friendly Islands, it is also constantly drunk by the chiefs, but so much diluted with water, that it does not appear to produce any bad effects. At Atooi, also, it is used with great moderation, and the chiefs are, in consequence, a much finer set of men there than in any of the neighbouring islands. We remarked, that, by discontinuing the use of this root, the noxious effects of it soon wore off. Our good friends, Kaireekeea and old Kaoo, were persuaded by us to refrain from it, and they recovered amazingly during the short time we afterward remained in the island.
It may be thought extremely difficult to form any probable conjectures respecting the population of islands, with many parts of which we are but imperfectly acquainted. There are, however, two circumstances that take away much of this objection; the first is, that the interior parts of the country are entirely uninhabited; so that, if the number of the inhabitants along the coast be known, the whole will be pretty accurately determined. The other is, that there are no towns of any considerable size; the habitations of the natives being pretty equally dispersed in small villages round all their coasts. It is on this ground that I shall venture at a rough calculation of the number of persons in this group of islands.
The bay of Karakakooa, in Owhyhee, is three miles in extent, and contains four villages of about eighty houses each, upon an average, in all three hundred and twenty; besides a number of straggling houses, which may make the whole amount to three hundred and fifty. From the frequent opportunities I had of informing myself on this head, I am convinced that six persons to a house is a very moderate allowance; so that, on this calculation, the country about the bay contains two thousand one hundred souls. To these may be added fifty families, or three hundred persons, which I conceive to be nearly the number employed in the interior parts of the country amongst their plantations, making in all two thousand four hundred. If, therefore, this number be applied to the whole extent of the coast round the island, deducting a quarter for the uninhabited parts, it will be found to contain one hundred and fifty thousand. By the same mode of calculation, the rest of the islands will be found to contain the following numbers:—
Owhyhee 150,000 Mowee 65,400 Woahoo 60,200 Atooi 54,000 Moroloi 36,000 Oneeheow 10,000 Ranai 20,400 Preehoua 4,000
Total of inhabitants 400,000
I am pretty confident, that in this calculation I have not exceeded the truth in the total amount. If we compare the numbers supposed to be in Owhyhee, with the population of Otaheite, as settled by Dr. Forster, this computation will be found very low. The proportion of coast in the latter island is to that of Owhyhee, only as one to three; the number of inhabitants at Otaheite he states to be one hundred and twenty-one thousand five hundred; though, according to his own principles, it should be double that amount. Again, if we compare it with the medium population of the countries in Europe, the proportion will be in favour of the latter nearly as two to one.
Notwithstanding the irreparable loss we suffered from the sudden resentment and violence of these people, yet, in justice to their general conduct, it must be acknowledged, that they are of the most mild and affectionate disposition; equally remote from the extreme levity and fickleness of the Otaheitans, and the distant gravity and reserve of the inhabitants of the Friendly Islands. They appear to live in the utmost harmony and friendship with one another. The women, who had children, were remarkable for their tender and constant attention to them; and the men would often lend their assistance in those domestic offices, with a willingness that does credit to their feelings.
It must however be observed, that they fall very short of the other islanders, in that best test of civilization, the respect paid to the women. Here they are not only deprived of the privilege of eating with the men, but the best sorts of food are tabooed, or forbidden them. They are not allowed to eat pork, turtle, several kinds of fish, and some species of the plantains; and we were told that a poor girl got a terrible beating for having eaten, on board our ship, one of these interdicted articles. In their domestic life, they appear to live almost entirely by themselves, and though we did not observe any instances of personal ill treatment, yet it was evident they had little regard or attention paid them.
The great hospitality and kindness with which we were received by them, have been already frequently remarked; and indeed they make the principal part of our transactions with them. Whenever we came on shore, there was a constant struggle who should be most forward in making us little presents, bringing refreshments, or shewing some other mark of their respect. The old people never failed of receiving us with tears of joy; seemed highly gratified with being allowed to touch us, and were constantly making comparisons between themselves and us, with the strongest marks of humility. The young women were not less kind and engaging, and till they found, notwithstanding our utmost endeavours to prevent it, that they had reason to repent of our acquaintance, attached themselves to us without the least reserve.
In justice however to the sex, it must be observed, that these ladies were probably all of the lower class of the people; for I am strongly inclined to believe, that excepting the few whose names are mentioned in the course of our narrative, we did not see any woman of rank during our stay amongst them.
Their natural capacity seems, in no respect, below the common standard of mankind. Their improvements in agriculture, and the perfection of their manufactures, are certainly adequate to the circumstances of their situation, and the natural advantages they enjoy. The eager curiosity with which they attended the armourer's forge, and the many expedients they had invented, even before we left the islands, for working the iron they had procured from us, into such forms as were best adapted to their purposes, were strong proofs of docility and ingenuity.
Our unfortunate friend, Kaneena, possessed a degree of judicious curiosity, and a quickness of conception, which was rarely met with amongst these people. He was very inquisitive after our customs and manners, asked after our king, the nature of our government, our numbers, the method of building our ships, our houses, the produce of our country, whether we had wars, with whom, and on what occasions, and in what manner they were carried on, who was our God, and many other questions of the same nature, which indicated an understanding of great comprehension.
We met with two instances of persons disordered in their minds; the one a man at Owhyhee, the other a woman at Oneeheow. It appeared, from the particular attention and respect paid to them, that the opinion of their being inspired by the Divinity, which obtains among most of the nations of the east, is also received here.
Though the custom of eating the bodies of their enemies be not known, by positive evidence, to exist in any of the South Sea islands, except New Zealand, yet it is extremely probable, that it was originally prevalent in them all. The sacrificing human victims, which seems evidently to be a relic of this horrid practice, still obtains universally amongst these islanders; and it is easy to conceive, why the New Zealanders should retain the repast, which was probably the last act of these shocking rites, longer than the rest of their, tribe, who were situated in more mild and fruitful climates. As the inhabitants of the Sandwich islands certainly bear a nearer resemblance to those of New Zealand, both in their persons and disposition, than to any other people of this family, so it was strongly suspected by Mr. Anderson, that, like them, they still continue to feast on human flesh. The evidence on which he founds this opinion, has been stated very fully in the tenth section of the third chapter; but, as I always entertained great doubts of the justice of his conclusions, it may not be improper to take this occasion of mentioning the grounds on which I venture to differ from him. With respect to the information derived from the natives themselves, I shall only observe, that great pains were taken, by almost every officer on board, to come at the knowledge of so curious a circumstance; and that except in the two instances mentioned by Mr. Anderson, we found them invariably denying the existence of any such custom amongst them. It must be allowed, that Mr. Anderson's knowledge of their language, which was superior to that of any other person in either ship, ought certainly to give his opinion great weight; at the same time, I must beg leave to remark, that being present when he examined the man who had the small piece of salted flesh wrapped in cloth, it struck me very forcibly, that the signs he made use of meant nothing more, than that it was intended to be eat, and that it was very pleasant or wholesome to the stomach. In this opinion I was confirmed, by a circumstance which came to our knowledge, after the death of my worthy and ingenious friend, viz. that almost every native of these islands carried about with him, either in his calibash, or wrapped up in a piece of cloth, and tied about his waist, a small piece of raw pork, pork, highly salted, which they considered as a great delicacy, and used now and then to taste of. With respect to the confusion the young lad was in, (for he was not more than sixteen or eighteen years of age,) no one could have been surprised at it, who had seen the eager and earnest manner in which Mr. Anderson questioned him.
The argument drawn from the instrument made with sharks' teeth, and which is nearly of the same form with those used at New Zealand for cutting up the bodies of their enemies, is much more difficult to controvert. I believe it to be an undoubted fact, that this knife, if it may be so called, is never used by them in cutting the flesh of other animals. However, as the custom of offering human sacrifices, and of burning the bodies of the slain, is still prevalent here, it is not improbable that the use of this instrument is retained in those ceremonies. Upon the whole, I am strongly inclined to think, and particularly from this last circumstance, that the horrid practice in question, has but lately ceased amongst these and other islands of the South Sea. Omai, when pressed on this subject, confessed that in the rage and fury of revenge, they would sometimes tear the flesh of their enemies that were slain with their teeth; but positively denied that they ever eat it. This was certainly approaching as near the fact as could be; but, on the other hand, the denial is a strong proof that the practice has actually ceased; since in New Zealand, where it still exists, the inhabitants neyer made the smallest scruple of confessing it.
The inhabitants of these islands differ from those of the Friendly Isles, in suffering, almost universally, their beards to grow. There were indeed a few, amongst whom was the old king, that cut it off entirely; and others that wore it only upon the upper lip. The same variety, in the manner of wearing the hair, is also observable here, as among the other islanders of the South Sea; besides which, as far as we know, they have a fashion peculiar to themselves. They cut it close on each side the head, down to the ears, leaving a ridge of about a small hand's breadth, running from the forehead to the neck; which, when the hair is thick and curling, has the form of the crest of the ancient helmet. Others wear large quantities of false hair, flowing down their backs in long ringlets, like the figure of the inhabitants of Horn Island, as seen in Dalrymple's Voyages; and others, again, tie it into a single round bunch on the top of the head, almost as large as the head itself, and some into five or six distinct bunches. They daub their hair with a grey clay, mixed with powdered shells, which they keep in balls, and chew into a kind of soft paste, when they have occasion to make use of it. This keeps the hair smooth, and in time changes it to a pale yellow colour.
Both sexes wear necklaces, made of strings of small variegated shells; and an ornament, in the form of the handle of a cup, about two inches long, and half an inch broad, made of wood, stone, or ivory, finely polished, which is hung about the neck by fine threads of twisted hair, doubled sometimes an hundred fold. Instead of this ornament, some of them wear on their breast a small human figure made of bone, suspended in the same manner.
The fan, or fly-flap, is also an ornament used by both sexes. The most ordinary kind are made of the fibres of the cocoa-nut, tied loose in bunches to the top of a smooth polished handle. The tail-feathers of the cock, and of the tropic-bird, are also used in the same manner; but the most valuable are those which have the handle made of the arm or leg bones of an enemy slain in battle, and which are preserved with great care, and handed down from father to son, as trophies of inestimable value.
The custom of tattowing the body, they have in common with the rest of the natives of the South Sea islands; but it is only at New Zealand and the Sandwich Islands, that they tattow the face. There is also this difference between the two last, that in the former it is done in elegant spiral volutes, and in the latter in straight lines, crossing each, other at right angles. The hands and arms of the women are also very neatly marked, and they have a singular custom amongst them, the meaning of which we could never learn, that of tallowing the tip of the tongues of the females.
From some information we received, relative to the custom of tattowing, we were inclined to think, that it is frequently intended as a sign of mourning on the death of a chief, or any other calamitous event. For we were often, told, that such a particular mark was in memory of such a chief, and so of the rest. It may be here too observed, that the lowest class are often tattowed with a mark, that distinguishes them as the property of the several chiefs to whom they belong.
The dress of the men generally consists only of a piece of thick cloth called the maro, about ten or twelve inches broad, which they pass between the legs, and tie round the waist. This is the common dress of all ranks of people. Their mats, some of which are beautifully manufactured, are of various sizes, but mostly about five feet long and four broad. These they throw over their shoulders, and bring forward before; but they are seldom used, except in time of war, for which purpose they seem better adapted than for ordinary use, being of a thick and cumbersome texture, and capable of breaking the blow of a stone, or any blunt weapon. Their feet are generally bare, except when they have occasion to travel over the burnt stones, when they secure them with a sort of sandal, made of cords, twisted from the fibres of the cocoa-nut. Such is the ordinary dress of these islanders; but they have another, appropriated to their chiefs, and used on ceremonious occasions, consisting of a feathered cloak and helmet, which, in point of beauty and magnificence, is perhaps nearly equal to that of any nation in the world. As this dress has been already described with great accuracy and minuteness, I have only to add, that these cloaks are made of different lengths, in proportion to the rank of the wearer, some of them reaching no lower than the middle, others trailing on the ground. The inferior chiefs have also a short cloak, resembling the former, made of the long tail-feathers of the cock, the tropic and man-of-war birds, with a broad border of the small red and yellow feathers, and a collar of the same. Others again are made of feathers entirely white, with variegated borders. The helmet has a strong lining of wicker-work, capable of breaking the blow of any warlike instrument, and seems evidently designed for that purpose.
These feathered dresses seemed to be exceedingly scarce, appropriated to persons of the highest rank, and worn by the men only. During the whole time we lay in Karakakooa Bay, we never saw them used but on three occasions; in the curious ceremony of Terreeoboo's first visit to the ships; by some chiefs, who were seen among the crowd on shore when Captain Cook was killed, and afterward when Eappo brought his bones to us.
The exact resemblance between this habit, and the cloak and helmet formerly worn by the Spaniards, was too striking not to excite our curiosity to enquire, whether there were any probable grounds for supposing it to have been borrowed from them. After exerting every means in our power of obtaining information on this subject, we found that they had no immediate knowledge of any other nation whatever, nor any tradition remaining among them of these islands having been ever visited before by such ships as ours. But, notwithstanding the result of these enquiries, the uncommon form of this habit appears to me a sufficient proof of its European origin, especially when added to another circumstance, that it is a singular deviation from the general resemblance in dress, which prevails amongst all the branches of this tribe, dispersed through the South Sea. We were driven indeed, by this conclusion, to a supposition of the shipwreck of some Buccaneer, or Spanish ship, in the neighbourhood of these islands. But when it is recollected, that the course of the Spanish trade from Acapulco to the Manillas is but a few degrees to the southward of the Sandwich Islands in their passage out, and to the northward on their return, this supposition will not appear in the least improbable.
The common dress of the women bears a close resemblance to that of the men. They wrap round the waist a piece of cloth, that reaches half way down the thighs; and sometimes in the cool of the evening they appeared with loose pieces of fine cloth, thrown over their shoulders, like the women of Otaheite. The pau is another dress very frequently worn by the younger part of the sex. It is made of the thinnest and finest sort of cloth, wrapt several times round the waist, and descending to the leg, so as to have exactly the appearance of a full short petticoat. The hair is cut short behind, and turned up before, as is the fashion among the Otaheiteans and New Zealanders; all of whom differ, in this respect, from the women of the Friendly Islands, who wear their hair long. We saw, indeed, one woman in Karakakooa Bay, Whose hair was arranged in a very singular manner; it was turned up behind, and brought over the forehead, and then doubled back, so as to form a sort of a shade to the face, like a small bonnet.
Their necklaces are made of shells, or of a hard shining red berry. Besides which, they wear wreaths of dried flowers of the Indian mallow; and another beautiful ornament called eraie, which is generally put about the neck, but is sometimes tied like a garland round the hair, and sometimes worn in both these ways at once. It is a ruff, of the thickness of a finger, made in a curious manner, of exceedingly small feathers, woven so close together as to form a surface as smooth as that of the richest velvet. The ground was generally of a red colour, with alternate circles of green, yellow, and black. Their bracelets, which were also of great variety, and very peculiar kinds, have been already described.
At Atooi, some of the women wore little figures of the turtle, neatly formed of wood or ivory, tied on their fingers in the manner we wear rings. Why this animal is thus particularly distinguished, I leave to the conjectures of the curious. There is also an ornament, made of shells, fastened in rows on a ground of strong netting, so as to strike each other when in motion; which both men and women, when they dance, tie either round the arm or the ankle, or below the knee. Instead of shells, they sometimes make use of dog's teeth, and a hard red berry, resembling that of the holly.
There remains to be mentioned another ornament (if such it may be called), which is a kind of mask, made of a large gourd, with holes cut in it for the eyes and nose. The top was stuck full of small green twigs, which, at a distance, had the appearance of an elegant waving plume; and from the lower part hung narrow stripes of cloth, resembling a beard. We never saw these masks worn but twice, and both times by a number of people together in a canoe, who came to the side of the ship, laughing and drolling, with an air of masquerading. Whether they may not likewise be used as a defence for the head against stones, for which, they seem best designed; or in some of their public games; or be merely intended for the purposes of mummery, we could never inform ourselves.
It has already been remarked, in a few instances, that the natives of the Sandwich Islands approach nearer to the New Zealanders in their manners and customs, than to either of their less distant neighbours of the Society or Friendly Islands. This is in nothing more observable than in their method of living together in small towns or villages, containing from about one hundred to two hundred houses, built pretty close together, without any order, and having a winding path leading through them. They are generally flanked, toward the sea, with loose detached walls, which, probably, are meant both for the purposes of shelter and defence. The figure of their houses has been already described. They are of different sizes, from eighteen feet by twelve, to forty-five by twenty-four. There are some of a larger kind, being fifty feet long and thirty broad, and quite open at one end. These, they told us, were designed for travellers or strangers, who were only making a short stay.
In addition to the furniture of their houses, which has been accurately described by Captain Cook, I have only to add, that at one end are mats on which they sleep, with wooden pillows, or sleeping stools, exactly like those of the Chinese. Some of the better sort of houses have a courtyard before them, neatly railed in, with smaller houses built round it, for their servants. In this area they generally eat, and sit during the day- time. In the sides of the hills, and among the steep rocks, we also observed several holes or caves, which appeared to be inhabited; but as the entrance was defended with wicker-work, and we also found, in the only one that was visited, a stone-fence running across it within, we imagine they are principally designed for places of retreat, in case of an attack from an enemy.
The food of the lower class of people consists principally of fish and vegetables, such as yams, sweet-potatoes, tarrow, plantains, sugar-canes, and bread-fruit. To these the people of a higher rank add the flesh of hogs and dogs, dressed in the same manner as at the Society Islands. They also eat fowls of the same domestic kind with ours; but they are neither plentiful nor much esteemed by them. It is remarked by Captain Cook, that the bread-fruit and yams appeared scarce amongst them, and were reckoned great rarities. We found this not to be the case on our second visit; and it is therefore most probable, that, as these vegetables were generally planted in the interior parts of the country, the natives had not had time to bring them down to us during the short stay we made at Wymoa Bay. Their fish, they salt, and preserve in gourd-shells; not, as we at first imagined, for the purpose of providing against any temporary scarcity, but from the preference they give to salted meats. For we also found, that the Erees used to pickle pieces of pork in the same manner, and esteemed it a great delicacy.
Their cookery is exactly of the same sort with that already described in the accounts that have been published of the other South Sea islands; and though Captain Cook complains of the sourness of their tarrow puddings, yet, in justice to the many excellent meals they afforded us in Karakakooa Bay, I must be permitted to rescue them from this general censure, and to declare, that I never eat better even in the Friendly Islands. It is however remarkable, that they had not got the art of preserving the bread- fruit, and making the sour paste of it called Maihee, as at the Society Islands; and it was some satisfaction to as, in return for their great kindness and hospitality, to have it in our power to teach them this useful secret. They are exceedingly cleanly at their meals; and their mode of dressing both their animal and vegetable food was universally allowed to be greatly superior to ours. The chiefs constantly begin their meal with a dose of the extract of pepper-root, brewed after the usual manner. The women eat apart from the men, and are tabooed, or forbidden, as has been already mentioned, the use of pork, turtle, and particular kinds of plantains. However, they would eat pork with us in private; but we could never prevail upon them to touch the two last articles.
The way of spending their time appears to be very simple, and to admit of little variety. They rise with the sun; and, after enjoying the cool of the evening, retire to rest a few hours after sun-set. The making of canoes and mats forms the occupations of the Erees; the women are employed in manufacturing cloth; and the Towtows are principally engaged in the plantations and fishing. Their idle hours are filled up with various amusements. Their young men and women are fond of dancing; and on more solemn occasions, they have boxing and wrestling matches, after the manner of the Friendly Islands; though, in all these respects, they are much inferior to the latter.
Their dances have a much nearer resemblance to those of the New Zealanders than of the Otaheiteans or Friendly Islanders. They are prefaced with a slow, solemn song, in which all the party join, moving their legs, and gently striking their breasts, in a manner, and with attitudes, that are perfectly easy and graceful; and so far they are the same with the dancers of the other Society Islands. When this has lasted about ten minutes, both the tune and motions gradually quicken, and end only by their inability to support the fatigue; which part of the performance is the exact counterpart of that of the New Zealanders; and (as it is among them) the person who uses the most violent action, and holds out the longest, is applauded as the best dancer. It is to be observed, that, in this dance, the women only take a part; and that the dancing of the men is nearly of the same kind with what we saw of the small parties at the Friendly Islands; and which may, perhaps, with more propriety, be called the accompaniment of songs, with corresponding and graceful motions of the whole body. Yet, as we were spectators of boxing exhibitions, of the same kind with those we were entertained with at the Friendly Islands, it is probable that they had likewise their grand ceremonious dances, in which numbers of both sexes assisted.
Their music is also of a ruder kind, having neither flutes nor reeds, nor instruments of any other sort, that we saw, except drums of various sizes. But their songs, which they sung in parts, and accompany with a gentle motion of the arms, in the same manner as the Friendly Islanders, had a very pleasing effect.
It is very remarkable that the people of these islands are great gamblers. They have a game very much like our draughts; but if one may judge from the number of squares, it is much more intricate. The board is about two feet long, and is divided into two hundred and thirty-eight squares, of which there are fourteen in a row; and they make use of black and white pebbles, which they move from square to square.
There is another game, which consists in hiding a stone under a piece of cloth, which one of the parties spreads out, and rumples in such a manner that the place where the stone lies is difficult to be distinguished. The antagonist, with a stick, then strikes the part of the cloth where he imagines the stone to be; and as the chances are, upon the whole, considerably against his hitting it, odds, of all degrees, varying with the opinion of the skill of the parties, are laid on the side of him who hides.
Besides these games, they frequently amuse themselves with racing matches between the boys and girls; and here, again, they wager with great spirit. I saw a man in a most violent rage, tearing his hair, and beating his breast, after losing three hatchets at one of these races, which he had just before purchased from us with half his substance.
Swimming is not only a necessary art, in which both their men and women are more expert than any people we had hitherto seen, but a favourite diversion amongst them. One particular mode, in which they sometimes amused themselves with this exercise, in Karakakooa Bay, appeared to us most perilous and extraordinary, and well deserving a distinct relation.
The surf, which breaks on the coast round the bay, extends to the distance of about one hundred and fifty yards from the shore, within which space the surges of the sea, accumulating from the shallowness of the water, are dashed against the beach with prodigious violence. Whenever, from stormy weather, or any extraordinary swell at sea, the impetuosity of the surf is increased to its utmost height, they choose that time for this amusement, which is performed in the following manner: Twenty or thirty of the natives, taking each a long narrow board, rounded at the ends, set out together from the shore. The first wave they meet they plunge under, and, suffering it to roll over them, rise again beyond it, and make the best of their way, by swimming out into the sea. The second wave is encountered in the same manner with the first; the great difficulty consisting in seizing the proper moment of diving under it, which, if missed, the person is caught by the surf, and driven back again with great violence; and all his dexterity is then required to prevent himself from being dashed against the rocks. As soon as they have gained, by these repeated efforts, the smooth water beyond the surf, they lay themselves at length on their board, and prepare themselves for their return. As the surf consists of a number of waves, of which every third is remarked to be always much larger than the others, and to flow higher on the shore, the rest breaking in the intermediate space, their first object is to place themselves on the summit of the largest surge, by which they are driven along with amazing rapidity toward the shore. If, by mistake, they should place themselves on one of the smaller waves, which breaks before they reach the land, or should not be able to keep their plank in a proper direction on the top of the swell, they are left exposed to the fury of the next, and, to avoid it, are obliged again to dive, and regain the place from which they set out. Those who succeed in their object of reaching the shore, have still the greatest danger to encounter. The coast being guarded by a chain of rocks, with here and there a small opening between them, they are obliged to steer their board through one of these, or, in case of failure, to quit it before they reach the rocks, and, plunging under the wave, make the best of their way back again. This is reckoned very disgraceful, and is also attended with the loss of the board, which I have often seen, with great terror, dashed to pieces, at the very moment the islander quitted it. The boldness and address with which we saw them perform these difficult and dangerous manoeuvres, were altogether astonishing, and is scarcely to be credited.
An accident, of which I was a near spectator, shews at how early a period they are so far familiarized to the water, as both to lose all fears of it, and to set its dangers at defiance. A canoe being overset, in which was a woman with her children, one of them an infant, who, I am convinced, was not more than four years old, seemed highly delighted with what had happened, swimming about at its ease, and playing a hundred tricks, till the canoe was put to rights again.
Besides the amusements I have already mentioned, the young children have one, which was much played at, and shewed no small degree of dexterity. They take a short stick, with a peg sharpened at both ends, running through one extremity of it, and extending about an inch on each side; and throwing up a ball, made of green leaves, moulded together, and secured with twine, they catch it on the point of the peg; and immediately throwing it up again from the peg, they turn the stick round, and thus keep catching it on each peg alternately, without missing it, for a considerable time. They are not less expert at another game of the same nature, tossing up in the air, and catching, in their turns, a number of these balls; so that we frequently saw little children thus keep in motion five at a time. With this latter play the young people likewise divert themselves at the Friendly Islands.
The great resemblance which prevails in the mode of agriculture and navigation, amongst all the inhabitants of the South Sea Islands, leaves me very little to add on those heads. Captain Cook has already described the figure of the canoes we saw at Atooi. Those of the other islands were precisely the same; and the largest we saw was a double canoe, belonging to Terreeoboo, which measured seventy feet in length, three and a half in depth, and twelve in breadth; and each was hollowed out of one tree.
The progress they have made in sculpture, their skill in painting cloth, and their manufacturing of mats, have been all particularly described. The most curious specimens of the former, which we saw during our second visit, are the bowls in which the chiefs drink ava. These are usually about eight or ten inches in diameter, perfectly round, and beautifully polished. They are supported by three, and sometimes four small human figures, in various attitudes. Some of them rest on the hands of their supporters, extended over the head; others on the head and hands; and some on the shoulders. The figures, I am told, are accurately proportioned, and neatly finished, and even the anatomy of the muscles, in supporting the weight, well expressed.
Their cloth is made of the same materials, and in the same manner, as at the Friendly and Society Islands. That which is designed to be painted, is of a thick and strong texture, several folds being beat and incorporated together; after which it is cut in breadths, about two or three feet wide, and is painted in a variety of patterns, with a comprehensiveness and regularity of design that bespeaks infinite taste and fancy. The exactness with which the most intricate patterns are continued is the more surprising, when we consider that they have no stamps, and that the whole is done by the eye, with pieces of bamboo-cane dipped in paint; the hand being supported by another piece of the cane, in the manner practised by our painters. Their colours are extracted from the same berries, and other vegetable substances, as at Otaheite, which have been already described by former voyagers.
The business of painting belongs entirely to the women, and is called kipparee; and it is remarkable that they always gave the same name to our writing. The young women would often take the pen out of our hands, and shew us that they knew the use of it as well as we did; at the same time telling us that our pens were not so good as theirs. They looked upon a sheet of written paper as a piece of cloth striped after the fashion of our country; and it was not without the utmost difficulty that we could make them understand that our figures had a meaning in them which theirs had not.
Their mats are made of the leaves of the pandanus; and, as well as their cloths, are beautifully worked in a variety of patterns, and stained of different colours. Some have a ground of pale green, spotted with squares or rhomboids of red; others are of a straw colour, spotted with green; and others are worked with beautiful stripes, either in straight or waving lines of red and brown. In this article of manufacture, whether we regard the strength, fineness, or beauty, they certainly excel the whole world.
Their fishing-hooks are made of mother-of-pearl, bone, or wood, pointed and barbed with small bones or tortoise-shell. They are of various sizes and forms, but the most common are about two or three inches long, and made in the shape of a small fish, which serves as a bait, having a bunch of feathers tied to the head or tail. Those with which they fish for sharks are of a very large size, being generally six or eight inches long. Considering the materials of which these hooks were made, their strength and neatness are really astonishing; and, in fact, we found them, upon trial, much superior to our own.
The line which they use for fishing, for making nets, and for other domestic purposes is of different degrees of fineness, and is made of the bark of the touta, or cloth-tree; neatly and evenly twisted, in the same manner as our common twine; and may be continued to any length. They have a finer sort, made of the bark of a small shrub, called areemah; and the finest is made of human hair; but this last is chiefly used for things of ornament. They also make cordage of a stronger kind, for the rigging of their canoes, from the fibrous coatings of the cocoa-nuts. Some of this we purchased for our own use, and found it well adapted to the smaller kinds of the running rigging. They likewise make another sort of cordage, which is flat, and exceedingly strong, and used principally in lashing the roofing of their houses, or whatever they wish to fasten tight together. This last is not twisted like the former sorts, but is made of the fibrous strings of the cocoa-nut's coat, plaited with the fingers, in the manner our sailors make their points for the reefing of sails.
The gourds, which grow to so enormous a size, that some of them are capable of containing from ten to twelve gallons, are applied to all manner of domestic purposes; and in order to fit them the better to their respective uses, they have the ingenuity to give them different forms, by tying bandages round them during their growth. Thus some of them are of a long cylindrical form, as best adapted to contain their fishing-tackle; others are of a dish form, and these serve to hold their salt and salted provisions, their puddings, vegetables, &c. which two sorts have neat close covers, made likewise of the gourd; others, again, are exactly in the shape of a bottle with a long neck, and in these they keep their water. They have likewise a method of scoring them with a heated instrument, so as to give them the appearance of being painted in a variety of neat and elegant designs.
Amongst their arts, we must not forget that of making salt, with which we were amply supplied during our stay at these islands, and which was perfectly good of its kind. Their salt-pans are made of earth, lined with clay; being generally six or eight feet square, and about eight inches deep. They are raised upon a bank of stones near to high-water mark, from whence the salt-water is conducted to the foot of them in small trenches, out of which they are filled, and the sun quickly performs the necessary process of evaporation. The salt we procured at Atooi and Oneeheow, on our first visit, was of a brown and dirty sort; but that which we afterward got in Karakakooa Bay was white, and of a most excellent quality, and in great abundance. Besides the quantity we used in salting pork, we filled all our empty casks, amounting to sixteen puncheons, in the Resolution only.