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Friday 25.

1767. fore, and I am sure, that for iron tools we might September.

have purchased every thing upon the islands which we could have brought away. They are of the Indian copper colour, the firft of that complexion that we had seen in these parts, with fine long black hair, and little beards, for wé obferved that they were continually płucking the hair from their chin and upper lip by the roots. Their features are pleasing, and their teeth remarkably white and even: they were of the common stature, but nimble, vigorous, and active in a surprising degree, running up to the maft-head much faster than our own people: Their disposition was free and open, they eat and drank whatever was given them, went without hesitation into every part of the fhip, and were as familiar and merry with the crew as if they had been of long and intimate acquaintance. They were not, like the people on all the other islands that we had visited, quite naked, though they had only a flight covering for the waist, which consisted of a narrow piece of fine matting. Their canoes were very well and neatly made, having a hollow tree for the bottom, and planks for the sides, with a fail of fine mat. ting, and an outrigger: their ropes and netting were also very good. They urged us strongly to go on shore, offering to leave an equal num. ber of their own people behind, as a pledge of their safe return; and indeed I would gladly

have consented if it had been in my power, but a 1767

September strong westerly current hurried me to so great a in distance, that I had no opportunity to seek for Friday 25. ' anchorage, and night coming on, we purfued our course. When our visitors perceived this, one of them infifted upon going with us, and, notwithstanding all that I and his companions could say or do, obstinately refused to go on shore. As I thought it poflible that this man might be the means of our making of some usefuldiscovery, I did not put him ashore by force, but indulged him in his desire: we learn from him that there were other isands to the northward, the inhabit. ants of which he said had iron, and always killed his countrymen when they could catch them out at fea. It was with great concern that I perceived this poor fellow, whom I called Joa feph Freewilt, from his readiness to go with us, become gradually sickly afcer he had been some time at sea : he lived till I got to the island of Celebes, and there died. As the iftands from which I had taken him were very small and low, the largest being not more than five miles in compass, I was furprised to fee with how many of the productions of Celebes he was acquainted; beside the cocoa-nut and palm, he knew the beetle-nut and the lime, and the moment he goc a bread-fruit, he went to the fire and roafted it in the embers. He made us understand also, that in his country they had plenty of fish, and

turtle

13

1767. turtle in their season. It is however very proSep:ember. ☺ bable, notwithstanding the number of people Friday 250 who sublift upon these islands, that they have no

fresh water but what falls in rain: how they catch and preserve it, I had no opportunity to learn, but I never met with a spring in a spot so small and low, and in such a spot I believe no spring was ever found. The largest of these

islands, which the natives call Pegan, and to Freewill land,

which I gave the name of Freewill ISLAND, lies fifty minutes north of the line, and in 137° 51' east longitude. They are all surrounded by a reef of rocks. The chart of these isands I drew from the Indian's description, who delineated them with chalk upon the deck, and al. certained the depth of water by stretching his arms as a fathom.

I now steered N. W. by N. to get from un-
der the sun, and had light winds at E. S. E.
with which almost any fhip but the Swallow
would have made good way, but with every
possible advantage she went at a heavy rate. We
now found our variation begin again to decrease,
as will appear by the following table :
Latitude.

Longitude from Queen
Charlotte's Fore-land.

Variation. 40'S. 8° 36'W. 4° 40 E. Upon the line. 9 40 W. 4 19 E.

30ʻN. 10 30 W. 3 10 E. 2° N. IL 40 W. 2 30 E. 2° 50'N, 12 10 W.

N NW

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On the 28th, being in latitude 2' 53'N, 1767.

Sepiember. longitude 136° 10' E. we fell in with a very in dangerous shoal, which is about eleven or

Monday 28. twelve' miles in circuit, and surrounded with small stones that just shew themselves aboye water. We found here a strong northerly current, but could not determine whether it inclined to the east or weit.

In the evening, we discovered from the maft. head another island to the southward of us: the east end of it seemed to rise in a peak, and had the appearance of a sail, but we did not go near enough to see any thing of it from the deck. I suppose its latitude to be about 20 50 N, and its longitude east of London, about 136° 10' E. . We continued to have a current to the north. O&ober.

Minday s. ward till Monday the 5th of October, when, be. ing in latitude 4° 36 N. I found it foutherly, and very strong. I had, among other deficiencies and misfortunes, no small boat on board, so that I could not try these currents, which I had a great desire to do; but I am of opinion, that when the current set southward it inclined to the east, and that when it set northward it inclined to the west.

On Monday the 12th, we discovered a small Monday 12. island with trees upon it, though scarcely bigger than a rock, and I called it CURRENT ISLAND. It lies in latitude 4° 40' N., longitude 14° 24' W. of Queen Charlotte's Foreland. The next : . 14

day,

Current
Iland

drew's INanda.

1767. day, we discovered two other small islands, O&tober.

which I called Saint Andrew's ISLANDS : they Monday 12. lie in latitude 5° 18' N., longitude 14° 47' W. Saint An.

of Queen Charlotte's Foreland. I called the small inand Current Isand, because we had here a southerly current so strong that it fet us from twenty-four to thirty miles southward every day, besides the difference it might make in our longitude. The wind was now variable, blowing

by turns from every point in the compass, with Tuesday 20. much rain, and hard squalls. On Tuesday the

2oth, being in latitude 8° N. it blew with such violence that we were obliged to lie to sixty-four hours. This gale, which made a very great sea, I supposed to be the shifting of the monsoon, and notwithstanding the southerly current, it drove us, while we lay to, as far as nine degrees northward.

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