HotFreeBooks.com
A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 14
by Robert Kerr
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

On the 1st of March we were alarmed with the cry of land by the man at the mast-head, on the larboard beam; which gave us great joy. We immediately hauled our wind and stood for it, but to our mortification were disappointed in a few hours; for, what we took to be land, proved no more than clouds, which disappeared as we sailed towards them. We then bore away, and directed our course towards the land laid down in the charts by the name of Van Diemen's Land, discovered by Tasman in 1642, and laid down in the latitude 44 deg. S., and longitude 140 deg. E., and supposed to join to New Holland.

On the 9th of March, having little wind and pleasant weather, about nine a. m. being then in the latitude of 43 deg. 37' S. longitude, by lunar observation, 145 deg. 36' E., and by account 143 deg. 10' E. from Greenwich, we saw the land bearing N.N.E., about eight or nine leagues distance. It appeared moderately high, and uneven near the sea; the hills farther back formed a double land, and much higher. There seemed to be several islands, or broken land, to the N.W., as the shore trenched; but by reason of clouds that hung over them, we could not be certain whether they did not join to the main. We hauled immediately up for it, and by noon were within three or four leagues of it. A point much like the Ramhead off Plymouth, which I take to be the same that Tasman calls South Cape, bore north four leagues off us. The land from this cape runs directly to the eastward; about four leagues along shore are three islands about two miles long, and several rocks, resembling the Mewstone, (particularly one which we so named,) about four or five leagues E.S.E 1/2 E. off the above cape, which Tasman has not mentioned, or laid down in his draughts. After you pass these islands, the land lies E. by N., and W. by S., by the compass nearly. It is a bold shore, and seems to afford several bays or anchoring-places, but believe deep water. From the S.W. cape, which is in the latitude of 43 deg. 39' S., and longitude 145 deg. 50' E. to the S.E. cape, in the latitude 43 deg. 36' S., longitude 147 deg. E., is nearly sixteen leagues, and sounding from forty-eight to seventy fathoms, sand and broken shells three or four leagues off shore. Here the country is hilly and full of trees, the shore rocky and difficult landing, occasioned by the wind blowing here continually from the westward, which occasions such a surf that the sand cannot lie on the shore. We saw no inhabitants here.

The morning, on the 10th of March, being calm, the ship then about four miles from the land, sent the great cutter on shore with the second lieutenant, to find if there was any harbour or good bay. Soon after, it beginning to blow very hard, made the signal for the boat to return several times, but they did not see or hear any thing of it; the ship then three or four leagues off, that we could not see any thing of the boat, which gave us great uneasiness, as there was a very great sea. At half-past one p.m. to our great satisfaction, the boat returned on board safe. They landed, but with much difficulty, and saw several places where the Indians had been, and one they lately had left, where they had a fire, with a great number of pearl escallop shells round it, which shells they brought on board, with, some burnt sticks and green boughs. There was a path from this place, through the woods, which in all probability leads to their habitations; but, by reason of the weather, had not time to pursue it. The soil seems to be very rich; the country well clothed with wood, particularly on the lee side of the hills; plenty of water which falls from the rocks in beautiful cascades, for two or three hundred feet perpendicular into the sea; but they did not see the least sign of any place to anchor in with safety. Hoisted in the boat, and made sail for Frederick Henry Bay. From noon to three p.m. running along shore E. by N., at which time we were abreast of the westernmost point of a very deep bay, called by Tasman, Stormy Bay. From the west to the east point of this bay there are several small islands, and black rocks, which we called the Friars. While crossing this bay we had very heavy squalls and thick weather; at times, when it cleared up, I saw several fires in the bottom of the bay, which is near two or three leagues deep, and has, I doubt not, good places for anchoring, but the weather being so bad, did not think it safe to stand into it. From the Friars the land trenches away about N. by E. four leagues: We had smooth water, and kept in shore, having regular soundings from twenty to fifteen fathoms water. At half-past six we hauled round a high bluff point, the rocks whereof were like so many fluted pillars, and had ten fathoms water, fine sand, within half a mile of the shore. At seven, being abreast of a fine bay, and having little wind, we came-to, with the small bower, in twenty-four fathoms, sandy bottom. Just after we anchored, being a fine clear evening, had a good observation of the star Antares and the moon, which gave the longitude of 147 deg. 34' E., being in the latitude of 43 deg. 20' S. We first took this bay to be that which Tasman called Frederick Henry Bay; but afterwards found that his is laid down five leagues to the northward of this.

At day-break the next morning, I sent the master in shore to sound the bay, and to find out a watering-place; at eight he returned, having found a most excellent harbour, clear ground from side to side, from eighteen to five fathom water all over the bay, gradually decreasing as you go in shore. We weighed and turned up into the bay; the wind being westerly, and very little of it, which baffled us much in getting in. At seven o'clock in the evening, we anchored in seven fathoms water, with a small bower, and moored with the coasting anchor to the westward, the north point of the bay N.N.E. 1/2 E. (which we take to be Tasman's Head), and the easternmost point (which we named Penguin Island, from a curious one we caught there) N.E. by E 3/4 E.; the watering-place W. 1/2 N.; about one mile from the shore on each side; Maria's Island, which is about five or six leagues off, shut in with both points; so that you are quite land-locked in a most spacious harbour.

We lay here five days, which time was employed in wooding and watering (which is easily got), and over-hauling the rigging. We found the country very pleasant; the soil a black, rich, though thin one; the sides of the hills covered with large trees, and very thick, growing to a great height before they branch off. They are all of the evergreen kind, different from any I ever saw; the wood is very brittle, and easily split; there is a very little variety of sorts, having seen but two. The leaves of one are long and narrow; and the seed (of which I got a few) is in the shape of a button, and has a very agreeable smell. The leaves of the other are like the bay, and it has a seed like the white thorn, with an agreeable spicy taste and smell. Out of the trees we cut down for fire-wood, there issued some gum, which the surgeon called gum-lac. The trees are mostly burnt or scorched, near the ground, occasioned by the natives setting fire to the under-wood, in the most frequented places; and by these means they have rendered it easy walking. The land birds we saw, are a bird like a raven; some of the crow kind, black, with the tips of the feathers of the tail and wings white, their bill long and very sharp; some paroquets; and several kinds of small birds. The sea-fowl are ducks, teal, and the sheldrake. I forgot to mention a large white bird, that one of the gentlemen shot, about the size of a large kite of the eagle kind. As for beasts, we saw but one, which was an opossom; but we observed the dung of some, which we judged to be of the deer kind. The fish in the bay are scarce; those we caught were mostly sharks, dog-fish, and a fish called by the seamen nurses, like the dog-fish, only full of small white spots; and some small fish not unlike sprats. The lagoons (which are brackish) abound with trout, and several other sorts of fish, of which we caught a few with lines, but being much encumbered with stumps of trees, we could not haul the seine.

While we lay here, we saw several smokes and large fires, about eight or ten miles in shore to the northward, but did not see any of the natives; though they frequently come into this bay, as there were several wigwams or huts, where we found some bags and nets made of grass, in which I imagine they carry their provisions and other necessaries. In one of them there was the stone they strike fire with, and tinder made of bark, but of what tree could not be distinguished. We found in one of their huts, one of their spears, which was made sharp at one end, I suppose, with a shell or stone. Those things we brought away, leaving in the room of them medals, gun- flints, a few nails, and an old empty barrel with the iron hoops on it. They seem to be quite ignorant of every sort of metal. The boughs, of which their huts are made, are either broken or split, and tied together with grass in a circular form, the largest end stuck in the ground, and the smaller parts meeting in a point at the top, and covered with fern and bark, so poorly done, that they will hardly keep out a shower of rain. In the middle is the fire-place, surrounded with heaps of muscle, pearl, scallop, and cray-fish shells, which I believe to be their chief food, though we could not find any of them. They lie on the ground, on dried grass, round the fire; and I believe they have no settled place of habitation (as their houses seemed built only for a few days), but wander about in small parties from place to place in search of food, and are actuated by no other motive. We never found more than three or four huts in a place, capable of containing three or four persons each only; and what is remarkable, we never saw the least marks either of canoe or boat, and it is generally thought they have none; being altogether, from what we could judge, a very ignorant and wretched set of people, though natives of a country capable of producing every necessary of life, and a climate the finest in the world. We found not the least signs of any minerals or metals.

Having completed our wood and water, we sailed from Adventure Bay, intending to coast it up along shore, till we should fall in with the land seen by Captain Cook, and discover whether Van Diemen's Land joins with New Holland. On the 16th, we passed Maria's Islands, so named by Tassman; they appear to be the same as the main land. On the 17th, having passed Shouten's Islands, we hauled in for the main land, and stood along shore at the distance of two or three leagues off. The country here appears to be very thickly inhabited, as there was a continual fire along shore as we sailed. The land hereabouts is much pleasanter, low, and even; but no signs of a harbour or bay, where a ship might anchor with safety. The weather being bad, and blowing hard at S.S.E., we could not send a boat on shore to have any intercourse with the inhabitants. In the latitude of 40 deg. 50' S., the land trenches away to the westward, which I believe forms a deep bay, as we saw from the deck several smokes arising a-back of the islands that lay before it, when we could not see the least signs of land from the mast head.

From the latitude of 40 deg. 50' S., to the latitude of 39 deg. 50' S., is nothing but islands and shoals; the land high, rocky, and barren. On the 19th, in the latitude of 40 deg. 30' S., observing breakers about half a mile within shore of us, we sounded, and finding but eight fathoms, immediately hauled off, deepened our water to fifteen fathoms, then bore away and kept along shore again. From the latitude of 39 deg. 50' to 39 deg. S., we saw no land, but had regular soundings from fifteen to thirty fathoms. As we stood on to the northward, we made land again in about 39 deg.; after which we discontinued our northerly course, as we found the ground very uneven, and shoal-water some distance off. I think it a very dangerous shore to fall in with.

The coast, from Adventure Bay to the place where we stood away for New Zealand, lies in the direction S. 1/2 W., and N. 1/2 E., about seventy-five leagues; and it is my opinion that there are no straits between New Holland and Van Diemen's Land, but a very deep bay.—I should have stood farther to the northward, but the wind blowing strong at S.S.E., and looking likely to haul round to the eastward, which would have blown right on the land, I therefore thought it more proper to leave the coast and steer for New Zealand.

After we left Van Diemen's Land, we had very uncertain weather, with rain and very heavy gusts of wind. On the 24th, we were surprised with a very severe squall, that reduced us from top-gallant sails to reefed courses, in the space of an hour. The sea rising equally quick, we shipped many waves, one of which stove the large cutter, and drove the small one from her lashing in the waist; and with much difficulty we saved her from being washed overboard. This gale lasted twelve hours, after which we had more moderate weather, intermixed with calms. We frequently hoisted out the boats to try the currents, and in general found a small drift to the W.S.W. We shot many birds; and had, upon the whole, good weather; but as we got near to the land, it came on thick and dirty for several days, till we made the coast of New Zealand in 40 deg. 30' S., having made twenty-four degrees of longitude, from Adventure Bay, after a passage of fifteen days.

We had the winds much southerly in this passage, and I was under some apprehensions of not being able to fetch the straits, which would have obliged us to steer away for George's Island; I would therefore advise any who sail to this part, to keep to the southward, particularly in the fall of the year, when the S. and S.E. winds prevail.

The land, when we first made it, appeared high, and formed a confused jumble of hills and mountains. We steered along shore to the northward, but were much retarded in our course by reason of the swell from the N.E. At noon, on the 3rd of April, Cape Farewell, which is the south point of the entrance of the west side of the straits, bore E. by N. 1/2 N. by the compass, three or four leagues distant. About eight o'clock we entered the straits, and steered N.E. till midnight; then brought-to till day-light, and had soundings from forty-five to fifty-eight fathoms, sand and broken shells. At day-light, made sail and steered S.E. by E.; had light airs; Mount Egmont N.N.E. eleven or twelve leagues, and Point Stephens S.E. 1/2 E. seven leagues. At noon, Mount Egmont N. by E. twelve leagues; Stephens Island S.E. five leagues. In the afternoon we put the dredge over-board in sixty-five fathoms; but caught nothing except a few small scallops, two or three oysters, and broken shells.

Standing to the eastward for Charlotte's Sound, with a light breeze at N.W., in the morning on the 5th, Stephens Island bearing S.W. by W. four leagues, we were taken a-back with a strong easterly gale, which obliged us to haul our wind to the S.E. and work to windward up under Port Jackson. The course from Stephens Island to Point Jackson, is nearly S.E. by the compass, eleven leagues distant, depth of water from forty to thirty-two fathoms, sandy ground. As we stood off and on, we fired several guns, but saw no signs of any inhabitants. In the afternoon, at half-past two, o'clock, finding the tide set the ship to the westward, we anchored with the coasting anchor in thirty-nine fathoms water, muddy ground; Point Jackson S.E. 1/2 E. three leagues; the east point of an inlet (about four leagues to the westward of Point Jackson, and which appears to be a good harbour) S.W. by W. 1/2 W. At eight p.m. the tide slackening, we weighed and made sail (having while at anchor caught several fish with hook and line), and found the tide to run to the westward, at the rate of two and a half knots per hour. Standing to the east, we found no ground at seventy fathoms, off Point Jackson N.N.W., two leagues. At eight the next morning, had the sound open; but the wind being down, it obliged us to work up under the western shore, as the tide sets up strong there, when it runs down in mid channel. At ten, the tide being done, was obliged to come-to with the best bower in thirty-eight fathoms, close to some white rocks, Point Jackson bearing N.W. 1/2 N.; the northernmost of the Brothers E. by S.; and the middle of Entry Island (which lies on the north side of the straits) N.E. We made 15 deg. 30' E., variation in the straits. As we sailed up the sound we saw the tops of high mountains covered with snow, which remains all the year. When the tide slackened, we weighed and sailed up the sound; and about five o'clock on the 7th, anchored in Ship Cove, in ten fathoms water, muddy ground, and moored the best bower to the N.N.E., and small to S.S.W. In the night, we heard the howling of dogs, and people hallooing on the east shore.

The two following days were employed in clearing a place on Motuara Island for erecting our tents for the sick (having then several on board much afflicted with the scurvy), the sail-makers and coopers. On the top of the island was a post erected, by the Endeavour's people, with her name and time of departure on it.

On the 9th, we were visited by three canoes with about sixteen of the natives; and to induce them to bring us fish and other provisions, we gave them several things, with which they seemed highly pleased. One of our young gentlemen seeing something wrapt up in a better manner than common, had the curiosity to examine what it was; and to his great surprise found it to be the head of a man lately killed. They were very apprehensive of its being forced from them; and particularly the man who seemed most interested in it, whose very flesh crept on his bones, for fear of being punished by us, as Captain Cook had expressed his great abhorrence of this unnatural act. They used every method to conceal the head, by shifting it from one to another; and by signs endeavouring to convince us, that there was no such thing amongst them, though we had seen it but a few minutes before. They then took their leave of us, and went on shore.

They frequently mentioned Tupia, which was the name of the native of George's Island (or Otaheite), brought here by the Endeavour, and who died at Batavia; and when we told them he was dead, some of them seemed to be very much concerned, and, as well as we could understand them, wanted to know whether we killed him, or if he died a natural death. By these questions, they are the same tribe Captain Cook saw. In the afternoon, they returned again with fish and fern roots, which they sold for nails and other trifles; though the nails are what they set the most value on. The man and woman who had the head, did not come off again. Having a catalogue of words in their language, we called several things by name, which surprised them greatly. They wanted it much, and offered a great quantity of fish for it.

Next morning, they returned again, to the number of fifty or sixty, with their chief at their head (as we supposed), in five double canoes. They gave us their implements of war, stone hatchets, and clothes, &c. for nails and old bottles, which they put a great value on. A number of the head men came on board us, and it was with some difficulty we got them out of the ship by fair means; but on the appearance of a musket with a fixed bayonet, they all went into their canoes very quickly. We were daily visited by more or less, who brought us fish in great plenty for nails, beads, and other trifles, and behaved very peaceably.

We settled the astronomer with his instruments, and a sufficient guard, on a small island, that is joined to Motuara at low water, called the Hippa, where there was an old fortified town that the natives had forsaken. Their houses served our people to live in; and, by sinking them about a foot inside, we made them very comfortable. Having done this, we struck our tents on the Motuara, and having removed the ship farther into the cove on the west shore, moored her for the winter. We then erected our tents near the river or watering-place, and sent ashore all the spars and lumber off the decks, that they might be caulked; and gave her a winter coat to preserve the hull and rigging. On the 11th of May, we felt two severe shocks of an earthquake, but received no kind of damage. On the 17th, we were surprised by the people firing guns on the Hippa, and having sent the boat, as soon as she opened the sound, had the pleasure of seeing the Resolution off the mouth of it. We immediately sent out the boats to tow her in, it being calm. In the evening she anchored about a mile without us; and next morning weighed and warped within us. Both ships felt uncommon joy at our meeting, after an absence of fourteen weeks.[1]

[1] It is, perhaps, unnecessary to state, that the opinion expressed in this section, as to there being no straits between New Holland and Diemen's Land, is erroneous. The reader must have previously known this.—E.



SECTION VIII.

Transactions in Queen Charlotte's Sound, with some Remarks on the Inhabitants.

Knowing that scurvy-grass, celery, and other vegetables, were to be found in this sound, I went myself the morning after my arrival, at day-break, to look for some, and returned on board at breakfast with a boat-load. Being now satisfied, that enough was to be got for the crews of both ships, I gave orders that they should be boiled, with wheat and portable broth, every morning for breakfast; and with peas and broth for dinner; knowing from experience, that these vegetables, thus dressed, are extremely beneficial, in removing all manner of scorbutic complaints.

I have already mentioned a desire I had of visiting Van Diemen's Land, in order to inform myself if it made a part of New Holland; and I certainly should have done this, had the winds proved favourable. But as Captain Furneaux had now, in a great measure, cleared up that point, I could have no business there; and therefore came to a resolution to continue our researches to the east, between the latitudes of 41 deg. and 46 deg.. I acquainted Captain Furneaux therewith, and ordered him to get his ship in readiness to put to sea as soon as possible.

In the morning of the 20th, I sent ashore, to the watering-place near the Adventure's tent, the only ewe and ram remaining, of those which I brought from the Cape of Good Hope, with an intent to leave them in this country. Soon after I visited the several gardens Captain Furneaux had caused to be made and planted with various articles; all of which were in a flourishing state, and, if attended to by the natives, may prove of great utility to them. The next day I set some men to work to make a garden on Long Island, which I planted with garden seeds, roots, &c.

On the 22d in the morning, the ewe and ram, I had with so much care and trouble brought to this place, were both found dead, occasioned, as was supposed, by eating some poisonous plant. Thus my hopes of stocking this country with a breed of sheep, were blasted in a moment. About noon, we were visited, for the first time since I arrived, by some of the natives, who dined with us; and it was not a little they devoured. In the evening they were dismissed with presents.[1]

Early in the morning of the 24th, I sent Mr Gilbert the master to sound about the rock we had discovered in the entrance of the sound. Myself, accompanied by Captain Furneaux and Mr Forster, went in a boat to the west bay on a shooting party. In our way, we met a large canoe in which were fourteen or fifteen people. One of the first questions they asked was for Tupia, the person I brought from Otaheite on my former voyage; and they seemed to express some concern when we told them he was dead. These people made the same enquiry of Captain Furneaux when he first arrived; and, on my return to the ship in the evening, I was told that a canoe had been along- side, the people in which seemed to be strangers, and who also enquired for Tupia.[2] Late in the evening Mr Gilbert returned, having sounded all round the rock, which he found to be very small and steep.

Nothing worthy of notice happened till the 29th, when several of the natives made us a visit, and brought with them a quantity of fish, which they exchanged for nails, &c. One of these people I took over to Motuara, and shewed him some potatoes planted there by Mr Fannen, master of the Adventure. There seemed to be no doubt of their succeeding; and the man was so well pleased with them, that he, of his own accord, began to hoe the earth up about the plants. We next took him to the other gardens, and shewed him the turnips, carrots, and parsnips; roots which, together with the potatoes, will be of more real use to them than all the other articles we had planted. It was easy to give them an idea of these roots, by comparing them with such as they knew.

Two or three families of these people now took up their abode near us, employing themselves daily in fishing, and supplying us with the fruits of their labour; the good effects of which we soon felt. For we were, by no means, such expert fishers as they are; nor were any of our methods of fishing equal to theirs.

On the 2d of June, the ships being nearly ready to put to sea, I sent on shore on the east side of the sound, two goats, male and female. The former was something more than a year old; but the latter was much older. She had two fine kids, some time before we arrived in Dusky Bay, which were killed by cold, as hath been already mentioned. Captain Furneaux also put on shore, in Cannibal Cove, a boar and two breeding sows; so that we have reason to hope this country will in time be stocked with these animals, if they are not destroyed by the natives before they become wild; for, afterwards, they will be in no danger. But as the natives knew nothing of their being left behind, it may be some time before they are discovered.

In our excursion to the east, we met with the largest seal I had ever seen. It was swimming on the surface of the water, and suffered us to come near enough to fire at it; but without effect; for, after a chase of near an hour, we were obliged to leave it. By the size of this animal, it probably was a sea-lioness. It certainly bore much resemblance to the drawing in Lord Anson's voyage; our seeing a sea-lion when we entered this sound, in my former voyage, increaseth the probability; and I am of opinion, they have their abode on some of the rocks, which lie in the strait, or off Admiralty Bay.

On the 3d, I sent a boat with the carpenter over to the east side of the sound, to cut down some spars which we were in want of. As she was returning, she was chased by a large double canoe full of people; but with what intent is not known. Early the next morning, some of our friends brought us a large supply of fish. One of them agreed to go away with us; but afterwards, that is, when it came to the point, he changed his mind; as did some others who had promised to go with the Adventure.

It was even said that some of them offered their children to sale. I however found that this was a mistake. The report first took its rise on board the Adventure, where they were utter strangers to their language and customs. It was very common for these people to bring their children with them, and present them to us, in expectation that we would make them presents; this happened to me the preceding morning. A man brought his son, a boy about nine or ten years of age, and presented him to me. As the report of selling their children was then current, I thought, at first, that he wanted me to buy the boy. But at last I found that he wanted me to give him a white shirt, which I accordingly did. The boy was so fond of his new dress, that he went all over the ship, presenting himself before every one that came in his way. This freedom used by him offended Old Will, the ram goat, who gave him a butt with his horns, and knocked him backward on the deck. Will would have repeated his blow, had not some of the people come to the boy's assistance. The misfortune, however, seemed to him irreparable. The shirt was dirtied, and he was afraid to appear in the cabin before his father, until brought in by Mr Forster; when he told a very lamentable story against goury the great dog (for so they call all the quadrupeds we had aboard), nor could he be reconciled, till his shirt was washed and dried. This story, though extremely trifling in itself, will shew how liable we are to mistake these people's meaning, and to ascribe to them customs they never knew even in thought.

About nine o'clock, a large double canoe, in which were twenty or thirty people, appeared in sight. Our friends on board seemed much alarmed, telling us that these were their enemies. Two of them, the one with a spear, and the other with a stone-hatchet in his hand, mounted the arm- chests on the poop, and there, in a kind of bravado, bid those enemies defiance; while the others, who were on board, took to their canoe and went ashore, probably to secure the women and children.

All I could do, I could not prevail on the two that remained to call these strangers along-side; on the contrary, they were displeased at my doing it, and wanted me to fire upon them. The people in the canoe seemed to pay very little regard to those on board, but kept advancing slowly towards the ship, and after performing the usual ceremonies, put along-side. After this the chief was easily prevailed upon to come on board, followed by many others, and peace was immediately established on all sides. Indeed, it did not appear to me that these people had any intention to make war upon their brethren. At least, if they had, they were sensible enough to know, that this was neither the time nor place for them to commit hostilities.

One of the first questions these strangers asked, was for Tupia; and when I told them he was dead, one or two expressed their sorrow by a kind of lamentation, which to me appeared more formal than real. A trade soon commenced between our people and them. It was not possible to hinder the former from selling the clothes from off their backs for the merest trifles, things that were neither useful nor curious. This caused me to dismiss the strangers sooner than I would have done. When they departed, they went to Motuara, where, by the help of our glasses, we discovered four or five canoes, and several people on the shore. This induced me to go over in my boat, accompanied by Mr Forster and one of the officers. We were well received by the chief and the whole tribe, which consisted of between ninety and a hundred persons, men, women, and children, having with them six canoes, and all their utensils; which made it probable that they were come to reside in this sound. But this is only conjecture; for it is very common for them, when they go but a little way, to carry their whole property with them; every place being alike, if it affords them the necessary subsistence; so that it can hardly be said they are ever from home. Thus we may easily account for the emigration of those few families we found in Dusky Bay.

Living thus dispersed in small parties, knowing no head but the chief of the family or tribe, whose authority may be very little, they feel many inconveniences, to which well-regulated societies, united under one head or any other form of government, are not subject. These form laws and regulations for their general good; they are not alarmed at the appearance of every stranger; and, if attacked or invaded by a public enemy, have strong-holds to retire to, where they can with advantage defend themselves, their property, and their country. This seems to be the state of most of the inhabitants of Eahei-nomauwe; whereas those of Tavai-poenammoo, by living a wandering life in small parties, are destitute of most of these advantages, which subjects them to perpetual alarms. We generally found them upon their guard, travelling and working, as it were with their arms in their hands. Even the women are not exempted from bearing arms, as appeared by the first interview I had with the family in Dusky Bay; where each of the two women was armed with a spear, not less than 18 feet in length.

I was led into these reflections, by not being able to recollect the face of any one person I had seen here three years ago: Nor did it once appear, that any one of them had the least knowledge of me, or of any person with me that was here at that time. It is therefore highly probable that the greatest part of the people which inhabited this sound in the beginning of the year 1770, have been since driven out of it, or have, of their own accord, removed somewhere else. Certain it is, that not one third of the inhabitants were here now, that were then. Their stronghold on the point of Motuara hath been long deserted; and we found many forsaken habitations in all parts of the sound. We are not, however, wholly to infer from this, that this place hath been once very populous; for each family may, for their own convenience, when they move from place to place, have more huts than one or two.

It may be asked, if these people had never seen the Endeavour, nor any of her crew, how could they become acquainted with the name of Tupia, or have in their possession (which many of them had) such articles, as they could only have got from that ship? To this it may be answered, that the name of Tupia was so popular among them when the Endeavour was here, that it would be no wonder if, at this time, it was known over great part of New Zealand, and as familiar to those who never saw him, as to those who did. Had ships, of any other nation whatever, arrived here, they would have equally enquired of them for Tupia. By the same way of reasoning, many of the articles left here by the Endeavour, may be now in possession of those who never saw her. I got from one of the people, now present, an ear ornament, made of glass very well formed and polished. The glass they must have got from the Endeavour.

After passing about an hour on Motuara with these people, and having distributed among them some presents, and shewed to the chief the gardens we had made, I returned on board, and spent the remainder of our royal master's birth-day in festivity; having the company of Captain Furneaux and all his officers. Double allowance enabled the seamen to share in the general joy.

Both ships being now ready for sea, I gave Captain Furneaux an account in writing of the route I intended to take; which was to proceed to the east, between the latitudes of 41 deg. and 46 deg. S., until I arrived in the longitude of 140 deg. or 135 deg. W., then, provided no land was discovered; to proceed to Otaheite; from thence back to this place, by the shortest route; and after taking in wood and water, to proceed to the south, and explore all the unknown parts of the sea between the meridian of New Zealand and Cape Horn. Therefore, in case of separation before we reached Otaheite, I appointed that island for the place of rendezvous, where he was to wait till the 20th of August: If not joined by me before that time, he was then to make the best of his way back to Queen Charlotte's Sound, where he was to wait until the 20th of November: After which (if not joined by me,) he was to put to sea, and carry into execution their lordships' instructions.

Some may think it an extraordinary step in me to proceed on discoveries as far south at 46 deg. degrees of latitude, in the very depth of winter. But though it most be owned, that winter is by no means favourable for discoveries, it nevertheless appeared to me necessary that something should be done in it, in order to lessen the work I was upon; lest I should not be able to finish the discovery of the southern part of the South Pacific Ocean the ensuing summer. Besides, if I should discover any land in my route to the east, I should be ready to begin, with the summer, to explore it. Setting aside all these considerations, I had little to fear; having two good ships well provided; and healthy crews. Where then could I spend my time better? If I did nothing more, I was at least in hopes of being able to point out to posterity, that these seas may be navigated, and that it is practicable to go on discoveries; even in the very depth of winter.

During our stay in the sound, I had observed that this second visit made to this country, had not mended the morals of the natives of either sex. I had always looked upon the females of New Zealand to be more chaste than the generality of Indian women. Whatever favours a few of them might have granted to the people in the Endeavour, it was generally done in a private manner, and the men did not seem to interest themselves much in it. But now, I was told, they were the chief promoters of a shameful traffic, and that for a spike-nail, or any other thing they value, they would oblige the women to prostitute themselves, whether they would or no; and even without any regard to that privacy which decency required.[3]

During our stay here, Mr Wales lost no opportunity to observe equal altitudes of the sun, for obtaining the rates of the watches. The result of his labours proved, that Mr Kendal's was gaining 9", 5 per day, and Mr Arnold's losing 94", 15s per day, on mean time.[4]

[1] Mr G.F. represents these people as very like those which had been seen at Dusky Bay, only much more familiar. At dinner, it is said, they would not drink either wine or brandy, but took large quantities of water sweetened with sugar, of which they were very fond. They shewed extreme covetousness, but were readily induced to lay down what they had seized on. They seemed to have acquaintance with the value of iron, and highly prized any thing made of it.—E.

[2] "When they were told that he was dead, they seemed much concerned, and pronounced some words in a plaintive voice. So much had this man's superior knowledge, and his ability to converse in their language, rendered him valuable and beloved, even among a nation in a state of barbarism. Perhaps with the capacity which Providence had allotted to him, and which had been cultivated no farther than the simplicity of his education would permit, he was more adapted to raise the New Zealanders to a state of civilization similar to that of his own islands than ourselves, to whom the want of the intermediate links, which connect their narrow views to our extended sphere of knowledge, must prove an obstacle in such an undertaking."—G.F.

This is a liberal observation in respect of Tupia, but it is liable to much objection as a general maxim. Besides the greater number of impracticable prejudices which attach themselves to imperfectly cultivated minds when placed in new situations, and which often render well-meant exertions unavailing, it is certain, that superior knowledge both affords greater aptitude of accommodation to unusual circumstances by the speedy discovery it enables the person to make of the principles on which they depend, and, at the same time, facilitates the management and direction of them when known, by the accustomed exercise of the faculties which it implies. Mr F. seems to have imposed on himself by the gratuitous use of figurative language. Where there is a want of intermediate links, there is certainly no connection; but admitting that all mankind is made up of the same materials, it may be very safely inferred, that the most civilized and best educated European carries about with him the whole chain, betwixt the "narrow views" of the New Zealanders and his own "extended sphere of knowledge." The physical wants of our species are the same in all regions of the globe, and so are our passions. These are grand levellers of the proud distinctions, by which some of us exalt ourselves so much above others; and they have never yet been set aside or eradicated by any process which human ingenuity has contrived. Often, indeed, savages excel in the knowledge and dexterous attainment of the means necessary to supply and gratify them. Our judicious Shakespeare seems to have been aware of this, when he causes the brutish Caliban to address Triaculo thus,—

"I'll shew thee the best springs; I'll pluck thee berries; I'll fish for thee, and get thee wood enough," &c.

Mr F. himself, as we shall soon see, has specified one link large and strong enough to answer for a chain in holding together British sailors at least, and New Zealanders, or, indeed, any other savages, however degenerate and abominable, to the end of the chapter!—E.

[3] "Our crews, who had not conversed with women since our departure from the Cape, found these ladies very agreeable, and from the manner in which their advances were received, it appeared very plainly that chastity was not rigorously observed here, and that the sex were far from being impregnable. However, their favours did not depend upon their own inclination, but the men, as absolute masters, were always to be consulted upon the occasion; if a spike-nail, or a shirt, or a similar present, had been given for their connivance, the lady was at liberty to make her lover happy, and to exact, if possible, the tribute of another present for herself. Some among them, however, submitted with reluctance to this vile prostitution: and but for the authority and menaces of the men, would not have complied with the desires of a set of people, who could, with unconcern, behold their tears and hear their complaints. Whether the members of a civilized society, who could act such a brutal part, or the barbarians who could force their own women to submit to such indignity, deserve the greatest abhorrence, is a question not easily to be decided. Encouraged by the lucrative nature of this infamous commerce, the New Zealanders went through the whole vessel, offering their daughters and sisters promiscuously to every person's embraces, in exchange for our iron tools, which they knew could not be purchased at an easier rate. It does not appear, that their married women were ever suffered to have this kind of intercourse with our people. Their ideas of female chastity are, in this respect, so different from ours, that a girl may favour a number of lovers without any detriment to her character; but if she marries, conjugal fidelity is exacted from her with the greatest rigour. It may therefore be alleged, that as the New Zealanders place no value on the continence of their unmarried women, the arrival of Europeans among them does not injure their moral characters in this respect; but we doubt whether they ever debased themselves so much as to make a trade of their women, before we created new wants by shewing these iron tools, for the possession of which they do not hesitate to commit an action, that, in our eyes, deprives them of the very shadow of sensibility. It is unhappy enough, that the unavoidable consequence of all our voyages of discovery has always been the loss of a number of innocent lives; but this heavy injury done to the little uncivilized communities which Europeans have visited, is trifling when compared to the irretrievable harm entailed upon them by corrupting their morals. If these evils were compensated in some measure by the introduction of some real benefit in these countries, or by the abolition of some other immoral custom among their inhabitants, we might at least comfort ourselves, that what they lost on one hand, they gained on the other; but I fear that hitherto our intercourse has been wholly disadvantageous to the natives of the South Seas; and that those communities have been the least injured, who have always kept aloof from us, and whose jealous disposition did not suffer our sailors to become too familiar among them, as if they had perceived in their countenances that levity of disposition, and that spirit of debauchery, with which they are generally reproached."

A little afterwards, relating a trip over to Long Island, it is said, "In the afternoon, many of our sailors were allowed to go on shore, among the natives, where they traded for curiosities, and purchased the embraces of the ladies, notwithstanding the disgust which their uncleanliness inspired. Their custom of painting their cheeks with ochre and oil, was alone sufficient to deter the more sensible from such intimate connections with them; and if we add to this a certain stench which announced them even at a distance, and the abundance of vermin which not only infested their hair, but also crawled on their clothes, and which they occasionally cracked between their teeth, it is astonishing that persons should be found, who could gratify an animal appetite with such loathsome objects, whom a civilized education and national customs should have taught them to hold in abhorrence."—G.F.

May this sad picture have the same effect, which the fathers of Sparta expected from the exhibition of their drunken slaves!—E.

[4] A few miscellaneous observations respecting New Zealand, collected from Mr G.F.'s work, may be given here with interest to some readers:—The arrival at New Zealand, was most delightful to men who had so long suffered the inclemencies and hardships of a navigation in the southern sea. Every object seen on the land afforded some agreeable sensation, heightened in no ordinary degree by the contrast which memory presented. No wonder then, that the description given of the scenery should be somewhat enthusiastic; besides, for every obvious reason, one might be inclined to expect, that Mr G. Forster should exceed even Cook in the warmth of colouring. It is so. He speaks in evidently poetical feeling of the delightfully fair weather, the lightly wafting airs, the numerous evergreens mingling with the various shades of autumnal yellow, the wild notes of the feathered tribe, &c. This was on getting sight of Dusky Bay. The effects of such charming panorama were visible on all the crew; "emotions of joy and satisfaction," he tells us, "were strongly marked in the countenance of every individual." He is quite aware of the magic at work in his own mind, when contemplating the picture, and accordingly very candidly and very justly says, "So apt is mankind, after a long absence from land, to be prejudiced in favour of the wildest shore, that we looked upon the country at that time, as one of the most beautiful which nature, unassisted by art, could produce. Such are the general ideas of travellers and voyagers long exhausted by distresses; and with such warmth of imagination they have viewed the rude cliffs of Juan Fernandez, and the impenetrable forests of Tinian!" So much, by the bye, as a hint for understanding the works of some other painters! But all was not mere semblance of good. Several substantial advantages were enjoyed, abundance of excellent fish and water-fowl, plenty of wood and water, &c. To a naturalist besides, there was much to occupy attention and excite curiosity, as a store of animal and vegetable bodies was perceived, bearing little or no resemblance to known species. But the dream of pleasure, and the hopes of much additional science, were not of very long duration. The necessary occupations of the different artificers, soon involved the people in very embarrassing intricacies and much bodily labour, occasioned by the prodigious variety and numbers of climbers, briars, shrubs, and ferns, interwoven through the forests, and almost totally precluding access to the interior of the country. From the appearance of these impediments, and the quantity of rotten trees which had been either felled by the winds, or brought low from age, it is conjectured, and plausibly enough, that the forests in the southern parts of New Zealand had escaped the hand of human industry since the origin of their existence. But nature, we may often see, is prodigal of life, and in the very act of dissolving one generation, seems to rejoice in providing for another that is to succeed it. Thus, we are told, there sprouted out young trees from the rich mould, to which the old ones were at last reduced. A deceitful bark, it is added, sometimes still covered the interior rotten substance, in which a person attempting to step on it, might sink to the waist. Such were the common disappointments in this Utopia. The naturalists had to add to them, the appropriate mortification of seeing numerous trees and shrubs, of which, as the time of flowering was past, it was impossible to make any scientific examination, and which, accordingly, only tantalized them with the idea of the profusion of new vegetables in this interesting country. A short residence here, especially during wet gloomy weather, proved that all was not so perfect in this climate as had been fondly imagined. The land about Dusky Bay, and indeed throughout most of the southern extremity of this island, was found to consist of steep rocky mountains, with craggy precipices, either clad with impenetrable forests, or quite barren, and covered with snow on the tops. No meadows or lawns were to be seen, and the only spot of flat land that was found, presented so much wood and briars as to be useless for either garden ground or pasture, without very considerable toil. This heartless description is somewhat relieved by a glowing picture of the scenery about what was called Cascade Cove, which seems to have arrested the attention of Mr F., and which, he says, could only have justice done it by the very successful pencil of Mr Hodges. The soil here was found to be quite like to what had elsewhere been found, and the rocks and stones consisted of granite, moor-stone, and brown talcous clay-stone. In one of the excursions to the country, it was observed, that as they receded from the sea, the mountains became much higher, and were more steep and barren, and that the trees dwindled in size, so as to resemble shrubs, circumstances rather the reverse of what is usually noticed in other countries. The climate of Dusky Bay is spoken unfavourably of, as its greatest inconvenience, and to this must be added its being deficient in celery, scurvy-grass, and other antiscorbutics. But with all its defects, Mr G.F. admits, that Dusky Bay is one of the finest places in New Zealand, for a crew to touch at in such a situation as that of his companions. The land about Cape Traveller appeared low and sandy near the shore, but rising into high snow-capt mountains interiorly. In one respect, according to this gentleman, Queen Charlotte's Sound has greatly the advantage of Dusky Bay, viz. its abounding in salutary vegetables. This it no doubt owes to the superior mildness of the climate, which is represented as highly favourable to botanical pursuits. The tea-tree and spruce, as they were called, were found here in great plenty, as well as at Dusky Bay; besides several species of plants in flower, which had not been seen before. The hills consisted chiefly of argillaceous stone, running in oblique strata, commonly dipping a little towards the south, of a greenish-grey, or bluish, or yellowish-brown colour, sometimes containing veins of white quartz, and sometimes a green talcous or nephritic stone, which, as it was capable of a good polish from its hardness, the natives used for chissels, &c. Mr F. specifies several other mineral substances found in this neighbourhood, particularly argillaceous strata of a rusty colour, which is inferred to contain iron, and a black compact and ponderous basalt, of which the natives form their pattoo-pattoos. It is unnecessary to make remarks on the subjects now mentioned, as they must be resumed in our account of Cook's third voyage, where we shall have to consider Mr Anderson's report respecting them and other topics, with greater attention, than was required for the present imperfect though valuable notices.—E.



SECTION IX.

Route from New Zealand to Otaheite, with an Account of some low Islands, supposed to be the same that were seen by M. de Bougainville.

On the 7th of June, at four in the morning, the wind being more favourable, we unmoored, and at seven weighed and put to sea, with the Adventure in company. We had no sooner got out of the sound, than we found the wind at south, so that we had to ply through the straits. About noon the tide of ebb setting out in our favour, made our boards advantageous; so that, at five o'clock in the evening. Cape Palliser, on the island of Eahei-nomauwe, bore S.S E. 1/2 S., and Cape Koamaroo, or the S.E. point of the sound, N by W. 3/4 W.; presently after it fell calm, and the tide of flood now making against us, carried us at a great rate back to the north. A little before high-water, the calm was succeeded by a breeze from the north, which soon increased to a brisk gale. This, together with the ebb, carried us by eight o'clock the next morning quite through the strait. Cape Palliser at this time bore E.N.E., and at noon N. by W. distant seven leagues.[1]

This day at noon, when we attended the winding-up of the watches, the fusee of Mr Arnold's would not turn round, so that after several unsuccessful trials we were obliged to let it go down.

After getting clear of the straits, I directed my course S.E. by E., having a gentle gale, but variable between the north and west. The late S.E. winds having caused a swell from the same quarter, which did not go down for some days, we had little hopes of meeting with land in that direction. We however continued to steer to the S.E., and on the 11th crossed the meridian of 180 deg., and got into the west longitude, according to my way of reckoning.

On the 16th, at seven in the morning, the wind having veered round to S.E., we tacked and stretched to N.E., being at this time in the latitude of 47 deg. 7', longitude 173 deg. W. In this situation we had a great swell from N.E.[2]

The wind continued at S.E. and S.S.E., blew fresh at intervals, and was attended with sometimes fair, and at other times rainy weather, till the 20th, on which day, being in the latitude of 44 deg. 30', longitude 165 deg. 45' W., the wind shifted to the west, blew a gentle gale, and was attended with fair weather. With this we steered E. by N., E. by S., and E., till the 23d at noon, when, being in the latitude of 44 deg. 38' S., longitude 161 deg. 27' W., we had a few hours calm. The calm was succeeded by a wind at east, with which we stood to the north. The wind increased and blew in squalls, attended with rain, which at last brought us under our courses; and at two o'clock in the afternoon of the next day, we were obliged to lie-to under the foresail, having a very hard gale from E.N.E., and a great sea from the same direction.[3]

At seven o'clock in the morning of the 25th, the gale being more moderate, we made sail under the courses, and in the afternoon set the top-sails close-reefed. At midnight, the wind having veered more to the north, we tacked and stretched to the S.E., being at this time in the latitude of 42 deg. 53' S., longitude 163 deg. 20' W.

We continued to stretch to the S.E., with a fresh gale and fair weather, till four o'clock in the afternoon of the next day, when we stood again to the N.E., till midnight between the 27th and 28th. Then we had a few hours calm, which was succeeded by faint breezes from the west. At this time we were in the latitude of 42 deg. 32', longitude 161 deg. 15' W. The wind remained not long at west, before it veered back to the E. by the N., and kept between the S.E. and N.E., but never blew strong.

On July 2d, being in the latitude of 53 deg. 3', longitude 156 deg. 17' W., we had again a calm, which brought the wind back to the west; but it was of no longer continuance than before. For the next day it returned to the E. and S.E., blew fresh at times, and by squalls, with rain.

On the 7th, being in the latitude of 41 deg. 22', longitude 156 deg. 12' W., we had two hours calm; in which time Mr Wales went on board the Adventure to compare the watches, and they were found to agree, allowing for the difference of their rates of going: A probable, if not a certain proof, that they had gone well since we had been in this sea.

The calm was succeeded by a wind from the south; between which point and the N.W., it continued for the six succeeding days, but never blew strong. It was, however, attended with a great hollow swell from the S.W. and W., a sure indication that no large land was near in those directions. We now steered east, inclining to the south, and on the 10th, in the latitude of 43 deg. 39', longitude 144 deg. 43' W., the variation was found, by several azimuths, to be more than 3 deg. E., but the next morning it was found to be 4 deg. 5' 30", and in the afternoon, 5 deg. 56' E. The same day, at noon, we were in the latitude of 43 deg. 44', longitude 141 deg. 56' W.

At nine o'clock in the morning of the 12th, the longitude was observed as follows, viz.

Self 1st set 139 deg. 47' 15" Ditto, 2d set 140 7 30 Mr Wales 1st set 141 22 15 Mr Wales 2d set 140 10 0 Mr Clerke 140 56 45 Mr Gilbert 140 2 0 ——————— Mean 140 24 17-1/2 West.

This differed from my reckoning only 2 deg. 1/2. The next morning, in the latitude of 43 deg. 3', longitude 139 deg. 20' W., we had several lunar observations, which were consonant to those made the day before, allowing for the ship's run in the time. In the afternoon we had, for a few hours, variable light airs next to a calm; after which we got a wind from the N.E., blowing fresh and in squalls, attended with dark gloomy weather, and some rain.

We stretched to the S.E. till five o'clock in the afternoon on the 14th, at which time, being in the latitude of 43 deg. 15', longitude 137 deg. 39' W., we tacked and stood to the north under our courses, having a very hard gale with heavy squalls, attended with rain, till near noon the next day, when it ended in a calm. At this time we were in the latitude of 42 deg. 39', longitude 137 deg. 58' W. In the evening, the calm was succeeded by a breeze from S.W., which soon after increased to a fresh gale; and fixing at S.S.W, with it we steered N.E. 1/2 E. in the latitude of 41 deg. 25', longitude 135 deg. 58' W., we saw floating in the sea a billet of wood, which seemed to be covered with barnacles; so that there was no judging how long it might have been there, or from whence or how far it had come.

We continued to steer N.E. 1/2 E., before a very strong gale which blew in squalls, attended with showers of rain and hail, and a very high sea from the same quarter, till noon, on the 17th. Being then in the latitude of 39 deg. 44', longitude 133 deg. 32' W., which was a degree and a half farther east than I intended to run; nearly in the middle between my track to the north in 1769, and the return to the south in the same year, and seeing no signs of land, I steered north-easterly, with a view of exploring that part of the sea lying between the two tracks just mentioned, down as low as the latitude of 27 deg., a space that had not been visited by any preceding navigator that I knew of.[4]

On the 19th, being in the latitude of 36 deg. 34', longitude 133 deg. 7' W., we steered N. 1/2 W., having still the advantage of a hard gale at south, which the next day veered to S.E. and E., blew hard and by squalls, attended with rain and thick hazy weather. This continued till the evening of the 21st, when the gale abated, the weather cleared up, and the wind backed to the S. and S.E.

We were now in the latitude of 32 deg. 30', longitude 133 deg. 40' W., from this situation we steered N.N.W. till noon the next day, when we steered a point more to the west; being at this time in the latitude of 31 deg. 6', longitude 134 deg. 12' W. The weather was now so warm, that it was necessary to put on lighter clothes; the mercury in the thermometer at noon rose to 63. It had never been lower than 46, and seldom higher than 54, at the same time of the day, since we left New Zealand.[5]

This day was remarkable by our not seeing a single bird. Not one had passed since we left the land, without seeing some of the following birds, viz. albatrosses, sheerwaters, pintadoes, blue peterels, and Port Egmont hens. But these frequent every part of the Southern Ocean in the higher latitudes: Not a bird, nor any other thing, was seen that could induce us to think that we had ever been in the neighbourhood of any land.

The wind kept veering round from the S. by the W. to N.N.W., with which we stretched north till noon the next day, when, being in the latitude of 29 deg. 22', we tacked and stretched to the westward. The wind soon increased to a very hard gale, attended with rain, and blew in such heavy squalls as to split the most of our sails. This weather continued till the morning of the 25th, when the wind became more moderate, and veered to N.W. and W.N.W., with which we steered and stretched to N.E., being at that time in the latitude of 29 deg. 51', longitude 130 deg. 28' W. In the afternoon the sky cleared up, and the weather became fair and settled. We now met the first tropic bird we had seen in this sea.

On the 26th, in the afternoon, being in the latitude of 28 deg. 44', we had several observations of the sun and moon, which gave the longitude 135 deg. 30' W. My reckoning at the same time was 135 deg. 27', and I had no occasion to correct it since I left the land. We continued to stretch to the north, with light breezes from the westward, till noon, the next day, when we were stopped by a calm; our latitude at this time being 27 deg. 53', longitude 135 deg. 17' W. In the evening, the calm was succeeded by a breeze from the N. and N.W., with which we plied to the N.

On the 29th I sent on board the Adventure to enquire into the state of her crew, having heard that they were sickly; and this I now found was but too true. Her cook was dead, and about twenty of her best men were down in the scurvy and flux. At this time we had only three men on the sick list, and only one of them attacked with the scurvy. Several more, however, began to shew symptoms of it, and were accordingly put upon the wort, marmalade of carrots, rob of lemons and oranges.

I know not how to account for the scurvy raging more in the one ship than the other, unless it was owing to the crew of the Adventure being more scorbutic when they arrived in New Zealand than we were, and to their eating few or no vegetables while they lay in Queen Charlotte's Sound, partly for want of knowing the right sorts, and partly because it was a new diet, which alone was sufficient for seamen to reject it. To introduce any new article of food among seamen, let it be ever so much for their good, requires both the example and authority of a commander; without both, of which it will be dropt before the people are sensible of the benefits resulting from it. Were it necessary, I could name fifty instances in support of this remark. Many of my people, officers as well seamen, at first disliked celery, scurvy-grass, &c., being boiled in the peas and wheat; and some refused to eat it. But, as this had no effect on my conduct, this obstinate kind of prejudice by little and little wore off; they began to like it as well as the others; and now, I believe, there was hardly a man in the ship that did not attribute our being so free from the scurvy, to the beer and vegetables we made use of at New Zealand. After this I seldom found it necessary to order any of my people to gather vegetables, whenever we came where any were to be got, and if scarce, happy was he who could lay hold on them first. I appointed one of my seamen to be cook of the Adventure, and wrote to Captain Furneaux, desiring him to make use of every method in his power to stop the spreading of the disease amongst his people, and proposing such as I thought might tend towards it. But I afterwards found all this unnecessary, as every method had been used they could think of.[6]

The wind continued in the N.W. quarter, and blew fresh at times, attended with rain; with which we stood to the N.E. On the 1st of August, at noon, we were in the latitude of 25 deg. 1', longitude 134 deg. 6' W., and had a great hollow swell from N.W. The situation we were now in, was nearly the same that Captain Carteret assigns for Pitcairn's Island, discovered by him in 1767. We therefore looked well out for it, but saw nothing. According to the longitude in which he has placed it, we must have passed about fifteen leagues to the west of it. But as this was uncertain, I did not think it prudent, considering the situation of the Adventure's people, to lose any time in looking for it. A sight of it would, however, have been of use in verifying, or correcting, not only the longitude of this isle, but of the others that Captain Carteret discovered in this neighbourhood; his longitude not being confirmed, I think, by astronomical observations, and therefore liable to errors, which he could have no method to correct.

As we had now got to the northward of Captain Carteret's tracks, all hopes of discovering a continent vanished. Islands were all we were to expect to find, until we returned again to the south. I had now, that is on this and my former voyage, crossed this ocean in the latitude of 40 deg. and upwards, without meeting any thing that in the least induced me to think I should find what I was in search after. On the contrary, every thing conspired to make me believe there is no southern continent, between the meridian of America and New Zealand; at least, this passage did not produce any indubitable signs of any, as will appear by the following remarks. After leaving the coasts of New Zealand, we daily saw floating on the sea rock- weed, for the space of 18 deg. of longitude. In my passage to New Zealand in 1769, we also saw this weed, for the space of 12 or 14 deg. of longitude before we made the land. The weed is undoubtedly the produce of New Zealand; because the nearer the coast, the greater quantity you see. At the greatest distance from the coast, we saw it only in small pieces, generally more rotten, and covered with barnacles, an indubitable sign that it had been long at sea. Were it not for this, one might be led to conjecture that some other large land lay in the neighbourhood; for it cannot be a small extent of coast to produce such a quantity of weed, as to cover so large a space of sea. It hath been already mentioned, that we were no sooner clear of the straits, than we met with a large hollow swell from the S.E., which continued till we arrived in the longitude of 177 deg. W., and latitude 46 deg.. There we had large billows from the N. and N.E., for five days successively, and until we got 5 deg. of longitude more to the east, although the wind, great part of the time, blew from different directions. This was a strong indication that there was no land between us and my track to the west in 1769. After this, we had, as is usual in all great oceans, large billows from every direction in which the wind blew a fresh gale, but more especially from the S.W. These billows never ceased with the cause that first put them in motion; a sure indication that we were not near any large land, and that there is no continent to the south, unless in a very high latitude. But this was too important a point to be left to opinions and conjectures. Facts were to determine it, and these could only be obtained by visiting the southern parts; which was to be the work of the ensuing summer, agreeable to the plan I had laid down. As the winds continued to blow from the N.W. and W., we had no other choice but to stand to the north, inclining more or less every day to the east. In the latitude of 21 deg. we saw flying-fish, gannets, and egg-birds. On the sixth, I hoisted a boat out, and sent for Captain Furneaux to dinner, from whom I learnt that his people were much better, the flux having left them, and the scurvy was at a stand. Some cyder which he happened to have, and which he gave to the scorbutic people, contributed not a little to this happy change. The weather to-day was cloudy, and the wind very unsettled. This seemed to announce the approach of the so-much-wished-for trade-wind; which, at eight o'clock in the evening, after two hours calm, and some heavy showers of rain, we actually got at S.E. We were, at this time, in the latitude of 19 deg. 36' S., longitude 131 deg. 32" W. The not meeting with the S.E. trade-wind sooner, is no new thing in this sea. As we had now got it, I directed my course to the W.N.W., as well to keep in the strength of it, as to get to the north of the islands discovered in my former voyage; that if any other islands lay in the way, I might have a chance to discover them.[7] During the day-time we made all the sail we could; but, in the night, either run an easy sail, or lay-to. We daily saw flying-fish, albacores, dolphins, &c., but neither by striking, nor with hook and line, could we catch any of them. This required some art, which none of my people were masters of.

On the 11th at day-break, land was seen to the south. This, upon a nearer approach, we found to be an island of about two leagues in extent, in the direction of N.W. and S.E., and clothed with wood, above which the cocoa- nut trees shewed their lofty heads. I judged it to be one of those isles discovered by Mr Bougainville. It lies in the latitude of 17 deg. 24', longitude 141 deg. 39' W., and I called it after the name of the ship, Resolution Island. The sickly state of the Adventure's crew made it necessary for me to make the best of my way to Otaheite, where I was sure of finding refreshments. Consequently I did not wait to examine this island, which appeared too small to supply our wants, but continued our course to the west, and at six o'clock in the evening, land was seen from the mast-head, bearing W. by S. Probably this was another of Bougainville's discoveries. I named it Doubtful Island, and it lies in the latitude of 17 deg. 20', longitude 141 deg. 38' W. I was sorry I could not spare time to haul to the north of Mr Bougainville's track; but the getting to a place where we could procure refreshments, was more an object at this time than discovery.[8]

During the night we steered W. by N., in order to pass the north of the island above-mentioned. At day-break the next morning, we discovered land right a-head, distant about two miles; so that day-light advised us of our danger but just in time. This proved another of these low or half-drowned islands, or rather a large coral shoal of about twenty leagues in circuit. A very small part of it was land, which consisted of little islets ranged along the north side, and connected by sand-banks and breakers. These islets were clothed with wood, among which the cocoa-nut trees were only distinguishable. We ranged the south side of this isle or shoal at the distance of one or two miles from the coral-bank, against which the sea broke in a dreadful surf. In the middle is a large lake or inland sea, in which was a canoe under sail.

This island, which I named after Captain Furneaux, lies in the latitude of 17 deg. 5', longitude 143 deg. 16' W. The situation is nearly the same that is assigned for one of those discovered by Bougainville. I must here observe, that amongst these low and half-drowned isles (which are numerous in this part of the ocean,) Mr Bougainville's discoveries cannot be known to that degree of accuracy which is necessary to distinguish them from others. We were obliged to have recourse to his chart for the latitudes and longitudes of the isles he discovered, as neither the one nor the other is mentioned in his narrative. Without waiting to examine this island we continued to steer to the west, all sails set, till six o'clock in the evening, when we shortened sail to three top-sails, and at nine brought-to.

The next morning at four a.m. we made sail, and at daybreak saw another of these low islands, situated in the latitude of 17 deg. 4', longitude 144 deg. 30' W., which obtained the name of Adventure Island. M. de Bougainville very properly calls this cluster of low overflowed isles the Dangerous Archipelago. The smoothness of the sea sufficiently convinced us that we were surrounded by them, and how necessary it was to proceed with the utmost caution, especially in the night.

At five o'clock p.m. we again saw land, bearing S.W. by S., which we afterwards found to be Chain Island, discovered in my former voyage. But as I was not sure of it at this time, and being desirous of avoiding the delay which lying by in the night occasioned, I hoisted out the cutter, and manned her with an officer and seven men, with orders to keep as far a-head of the ships, with a light at her masthead, as a signal could be distinguished, which she was to make in case she met with any danger. In this manner we continued to run all night; and, at six o'clock the next morning, I called her on board, and hoisted her in. For it did not appear she would be wanted again for this purpose, as we had now a large swell from the south, a sure sign that we were clear of the low islands; therefore I steered for Otaheite without being apprehensive of meeting with any danger.[9]

[1] Great shoals of cetaceous fish, of a perfectly black colour, with a white spot before the back-fin, passed by us. They were fired at from our vessel, and one of them being shot through the head, could no longer plunge under water, but began to beat about furiously on the surface, and tinged the sea with its blood. It seemed to be about three yards long, and was slender and blunt-headed, from whence our sailors called it the Bottle-nose, a name which Dale applies to a very different fish, the beaked whale, of which the beak or nose resembles the neck of a bottle."—G.F.

[2] "Beds of sea-weeds frequently were seen floating on the sea, but we were now too much accustomed to their appearance, to attempt to draw any conclusions from it. The thermometer, which at our departure from New Zealand, stood at 51 deg. at eight o'clock in the morning, sunk in proportion as we came to the southward to 48 deg., and sometimes to 47 deg., at the same time of day; but the temperature of the air upon the whole was extremely variable, and the weather equally unsettled. From thence it arose, that we daily observed rainbows, or parts of them about the horizon, especially in the morning. The wind during this time was likewise very changeable, and veered round the compass in a direction contrary to the course of the sun, that is, from west round by the north towards east, and so further on; but it chiefly prevailed from the easterly quarter, where we least expected it, so that our situation became tedious, and was made more irksome by frequent fogs, rains, and heavy swells."—G.F.

[3] According to Sir G.F., it seems that the venereal disease made its appearance on some of the Adventure's crew, as was intimated by Captain Furneaux to Captain Cook, during a visit paid to the latter. In the opinion of Mr F., who is at some pains to investigate the subject, this disease was indigenous in New Zealand where the sailors contracted it, and not imported there by Europeans. This opinion is, no doubt, in confirmation of what the writer has elsewhere stated to be his own as to the general question respecting the origin of the disease; but he is bound in candour to admit, that it seems to rest on rather slender evidence and insufficient reasoning, in the present instance—so that he is less disposed to avail himself of it. Mr F. himself is not positive as to the facts on which he founds his opinion, and consequently is not so as to the opinion. This is to be inferred from his concluding remarks, which, besides, exhibit so fair a specimen of just indignation and regret, as may deserve to be offered to the reader's notice. "If," says he, "in spite of appearances, our conclusions should prove erroneous, it is another crime added to the score of civilized nations, which must make their memory execrated by the unhappy people, whom they have poisoned. Nothing can in the least atone for the injury they have done to society, since the price at which their libidinous enjoyments were purchased, instils another poison into the mind, and destroys the moral principles, while the disease corrupts and enervates the body. A race of men, who, amidst all their savage roughness, their fiery temper, and cruel customs, are brave, generous, hospitable, and incapable of deceiving, are justly to be pitied, that love, the source of their sweetest and happiest feelings, is converted into the origin of the most dreadful scourge of life." In this last paragraph, there is reason to imagine Mr F. has somewhat overstepped the modesty of both history and nature—the former, by too high commendation of the New Zealanders, who, whatever merit they may claim on other grounds, can scarcely be said, at least if facts are to be trusted, to be incapable of deceiving; and the latter, in ascribing greater influence to love among these savages, than perhaps will ever be found realised in such a condition of our nature. One cannot believe, that so philosophical an enquirer should impute much efficacy as a source of happiness to the mere brute passion; and it is equally unlikely that so acute an observer should discover any thing more refined than such an appetite in the sexual intercourse among so rude a tribe. Probably then his language is fully more poetic than becomes the sober narrator. This, indeed, is nowise uncommon with him, as the reader perhaps is already convinced. But this very circumstance, it is obvious, is to his advantage as a writer.—E.

[4] "The uncomfortable season of the year, the many contrary winds, and the total want of interesting incidents, united to make this run extremely tedious to us all, and the only point we gained by it, was the certainty that no great land was situated in the South Sea about the middle latitudes."—G.F.

[5] "The spirits of all our people were much exhilarated in proportion as we approached to the tropics, and our sailors diverted themselves with a variety of plays every evening. The genial mildness of the air was so welcome to us, after a long absence from it, that we could not help preferring the warm climates as the best adapted for the abode of mankind."—G.F.

An observation of this sort, the evident result of experience, is worth a thousand treatises, in shewing how much man is the creature of circumstances and situation, and how justly his feelings, and of consequence his thoughts, are modified by climate and weather. Some philosophers, and, perhaps, more religionists, have endeavoured to devise means to render the human mind and character independent of physical elements. The attempt is just about as rational, and not a bit less presumptuous, than that of making them free of the Divine cognizance and authority, to which these elements are subjected. Such attempts, it seems pretty evident, have been the source of delusive self-congratulation in all ages of the world, and may be ascribed, with no very mighty stretch of fancy, to the same busy agent, by whom, in the earliest stage of our nature, man was tempted with the alluring hope of becoming "as God." A wiser and more benevolent instructor would teach him, on the contrary, to acknowledge his dependences and avoiding forbidden things, to partake with cheerfulness of the material blessings which surround him. This is genuine confidence in the Supreme Ruler, though, to be sure, it has little or no charms for the obstinate stoic, or the conceited pharisee. But "wisdom, it is certain, will be justified of all who are under its influence."—E.

[6] "The difference between the salubrity of the two vessels probably arose from the want of fresh air in the Adventure, our sloop being higher out of the water, so that we could open more scuttles in bad weather than our consort. Our people likewise made a greater consumption of sour-krout and wort, and particularly applied the grains of the latter to all blotches and swelled parts, a regimen which had been omitted by those in the Adventure."—G.F.

[7] "After many wishes, and long expectation, we this day, (6th August,) got the S.E. trade-wind. Its manner of coming on was rather remarkable. About ten o'clock in the morning, a thick haze began to rise in the eastern quarter, which by noon was become so thick, and had spread so far, that it was with difficulty we got the sun's meridian altitude; but the N.W. wind, which we had had for about a fortnight, during which time the weather was generally fine and pleasant, still continued to blow. In the afternoon we had some pretty brisk showers, with which the N.W. wind died away, and it was calm till eight o'clock in the evening, when a brisk steady gale sprung up at S.E., and proved permanent."—W.

Mr F. has given some very valuable remarks respecting the trade-winds but they are too long for this place.—E.

[8] "Our thermometer was now constantly between 70 and 80 degrees in the morning; but the heat was far from being troublesome, as the fair weather was accompanied by a strong pleasant trade-wind,"—G.F.

[9] This is a very fit place for the following curious observations on the formation of the low islands spoken of in the text. "All the low isles seem to me to be a production of the sea, or rather its inhabitants, the polype-like animals forming the lithophytes. These animalcules raise their habitation gradually from a small base, always spreading more and more, in proportion as the structure grows higher. The materials are a kind of lime mixed with some animal substance. I have seen these large structures in all stages, and of various extent. Near Turtle-Island, we found, at a few miles distance, and to leeward of it, a considerable large circular reef, over which the sea broke every where, and no part of it was above water; it included a large deep lagoon. To the east and north-east of the Society-Isles, are a great many isles, which, in some parts, are above water; in others, the elevated parts are connected by reefs, some of which, are dry at low-water, and others are constantly under water. The elevated parts consist of a soil formed by a sand of shells and coral rocks, mixed with a light black mould, produced from putrified vegetables, and the dung of sea-fowls; and are commonly covered by cocoa-nut trees and other shrubs, and a few antiscorbutic plants. The lower parts have only a few shrubs, and the above plants; others still lower, are washed by the sea at high-water. All these isles are connected, and include a lagoon in the middle, which is full of the finest fish; and sometimes there is an opening, admitting a boat, or canoe, in the reef, but I never saw or heard of an opening that would admit a ship. The reef, or the first origin of these cells, is formed by the animalcules inhabiting the lithophytes. They raise their habitation within a little of the surface of the sea, which gradually throws shells, weeds, sand, small bits of corals, and other things, on the tops of these coral rocks, and at last fairly raises them above water; where the above things continue to be accumulated by the sea, till by a bird, or by the sea, a few seeds of plants, that commonly grow on the sea-shore, are thrown up, and begin to vegetate; and by their annual decay and reproduction from seeds, create a little mould, yearly accumulated by the mixture from sand, increasing the dry spot on every side; till another sea happens to carry a cocoa-nut hither, which preserves its vegetative power a long time in the sea, and therefore will soon begin to grow on this soil, especially as it thrives equally in all kinds of soil; and thus may all these low isles have become covered with the finest cocoa-nut trees. The animalcules forming these reefs, want to shelter their habitation from the impetuosity of the winds, and the power and rage of the ocean; but as within the tropics, the winds blow commonly from one quarter, they, by instinct, endeavour to stretch only a ledge, within which is a lagoon, which is certainly entirely screened against the power of both; this, therefore, might account for the method employed by the animalcules in building only narrow ledges of coral rocks, to secure in this middle a calm and sheltered place, and this seems to me to be the most probable cause of the origin of all the tropical low isles, over the whole South Sea."—F.

This theory has been pretty generally adopted by scientific men, and does not seem liable to any valid objection. The astonishment it may excite, is quite analogous to what is experienced on any discovery of the important ends to which the instinctive labours of other creatures are subservient, and is great, merely because of the conceived magnitude of the object to which it relates. But this affords no presumption against the truth of the theory; rather indeed, if the doctrine of final causes be allowed any credit, may be held, as in some degree, circumstantial evidence in its favour. We shall elsewhere, it is expected, have occasion to consider the subject with the attention it deserves.—E.



SECTION X.

Arrival of the Ships at Otaheite, with an Account of the critical Situation they were in, and of several Incidents that happened while they lay in Oaiti-piha Bay.

On the 15th, at five o'clock in the morning, we saw Osnaburg Island, or Maitea, discovered by Captain Wallis, bearing S. by W. 1/2 W. Soon after I brought-to, and waited for the Adventure to come up with us, to acquaint Captain Furneaux that it was my intention to put into Oaiti-piha Bay, near the south-east end of Otaheite, in order to get what refreshments we could from that part of the island, before we went down to Matavia. This done, we made sail, and at six in the evening saw the land bearing west. We continued to stand on till midnight, when we brought-to, till four o'clock in the morning, and then made sail in for the land with a fine breeze at east.[1]

At day-break we found ourselves not more than half a league from the reef. The breeze now began to fail us, and at last fell to a calm. This made it necessary to hoist out our boats to tow the ships off; but all their efforts were not sufficient to keep them from being carried near the reef. A number of the inhabitants came off in canoes from different parts, bringing with them a little fish, a few cocoa-nuts, and other fruits, which they exchanged for nails, beads, &c. The most of them knew me again, and many enquired for Mr Banks and others who were with me before; but not one asked for Tupia. As the calm continued, our situation became still more dangerous. We were, however, not without hopes of getting round the western point of the reef and into the bay, till about two o'clock in the afternoon, when we came before an opening or break in the reef, through which I hoped to get with the ships. But on sending to examine it, I found there was not a sufficient depth of water; though it caused such an in- draught of the tide of flood through it, as was very near proving fatal to the Resolution; for as soon as the ships got into the stream, they were carried with great impetuosity towards the reef. The moment I perceived this, I ordered one of the warping machines, which we had in readiness, to be carried out with about four hundred fathoms of rope; but it had not the least effect. The horrors of shipwreck now stared us in the face. We were not more than two cables length from the breakers; and yet we could find no bottom to anchor, the only probable means we had left to save the ships. We, however, dropt an anchor; but, before it took hold, and brought us up, the ship was in less than three fathom water, and struck at every fall of the sea, which broke close under our stem in a dreadful surf, and threatened us every moment with shipwreck. The Adventure, very luckily, brought up close upon our bow without striking.

We presently carried out two kedge-anchors, with hawsers to each; these found ground a little without the bower, but in what depth we never knew. By heaving upon them, and cutting away the bower-anchor, we got the ship a- float, where we lay some time in the greatest anxiety, expecting every minute that either the kedges would come home, or the hawsers be cut in two by the rocks. At length the tide ceased to act in the same direction. I ordered all the boats to try to tow off the Resolution; and when I saw this was practicable, we hove up the two kedges. At that moment, a light air came off from the land, which so much assisted the boats, that we soon got clear of all danger. Then I ordered all the boats to assist the Adventure, but before they reached her, she was under sail with the land-breeze, and soon after joined us, leaving behind her three anchors, her coasting cable, and two hawsers, which were never recovered. Thus we were once more safe at sea, after narrowly escaping being wrecked on the very island we but a few days before so ardently wished to be at. The calm, after bringing us into this dangerous situation, very fortunately continued; for, had the sea- breeze, as is usual, set in, the Resolution must inevitably have been lost, and probably the Adventure too.

During the lime we were in this critical situation, a number of the natives were on board and about the ships. They seemed to be insensible of our danger, shewing not the least surprise, joy, or fear, when we were striking, and left us a little before sun-set, quite unconcerned.[2]

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15     Next Part
Home - Random Browse