Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

(% Man Meman&Bay, Natives of orauere; in the Drops of that Country

горе. .

were

grappling, upon which he instantly let it go, with marks 1767. of great terror and astonishment ; the people on shore

June. also let

go

the The boats after this, lay some time upon their oars ; but the officer finding that he could get nothing more, returned on board. Mr. Furneaux told me that both men and women cloathed, and he brought a piece of their cloth away with him. The inhabitants appeared to him to be more numerous than the island could support, and for this reason, especially as he saw some large double canoes upon the beach, he imagined there were illands of larger extent, not far diftant, where refreshments in greater plenty might be procured, and hoped that they might be less difficult of access. As I thought this a reasonable conjecture, I hoifted in the boats, and de-termined to run farther to the westward. To this place, which is nearly circular, and about two miles over, I gave the name of OSNABURGH ISLAND, in honour of Ofnaburgh

Inana. Prince Frederick, who is bishop of that see. It lies in latitude 17° 57' S. and longitude 147° 30' W. the variation here was 7° 10' E.

[blocks in formation]

An account of the Discovery of King George the Third's

Island, or Otaheite, and of several incidents which happened botb on board the Ship, and on Shore.

AT

T two o'clock, the fame day, we bore away, and Thursd. 18.

in about half an hour, discovered very high land in the W. S. W. At leven in the evening, Ofnaburgh Ifland bore E. N. E. and the new discovered land, from W.N. W. to W. by S. As the weather was thick and fqually, we brought to for the night, or at least till the fog should break away. At two in the morning, it be- Friday 19. ing very clear, we made fail again ; at day-break we faw the land, at about five leagues distance, and steered direaly for it ; but at eight o'clock, when we were close under it, the fog obliged us again so lie to, and when it cleared away, we were much surprised to find Ourselves surrounded by some hundreds of canoes. They were of different sizes, and had on board different numbers from one to ten, so that in all of them to

gether,

1767. June.

gether, there could not be less than eight hundred people. When they came within pistol Thot of the fhip, they lay by, gazing at us with great astonishment, and by turns conferring with each other. In the mean time we shewed them trinkets of various kinds, and invited them on board. Soon after, they drew together, and held a kind of council to determine what should be done : then they all paddled round the ship, making signs of friendship, and one of them holding up a branch of the plantain tree, made a speech that lasted near

quarter of an hour, and then threw it into the sea. Soon after as we continued to make signs of invitation, a fine, stout lively young man ventured on board: he came up by the mizen chains, and jumped out of the shrouds upon the top of the awning. We made signs to him 10 come down upon

the

quarter-deck, and handed up some trinkets to him : he looked pleased, but would accept of nothing till fome of the Indians came along-side, and after much talk, threw a few branches of plantain-tree on board the ship. He then accepted our presents, and several others very soon came on board, at different parts of the ship, not knowing the proper entrance. As one of these Indians was standing near the gang-way, on the farboard side of the quarter-deck, one of our guats butted him upon the haunches : being surprized at the blow, he hastily turned about, and saw the goat raised upon his hind legs, ready to repeat the blow. The appearance of this animal, so different from any he had ever feen, struck him with such terror that he instantly leaped over-board ; and all the rest, upon seeing what had happened, followed his example with the utmost precipitation : they recovered however, in a short time, from their fright, and returned on board. After having a little reconciled them to our goats and sheep, I shewed them our hogs and poultry, and they immediately made signs that they had such animals as these. I then distributed trinkets and nails among them, and made signs that they should go on shore and bring us some of their hogs, fowls and fruit, but they did not seem to understand my meaning: they were in the mean time watching an opportunity to steal fome of the things that happened to lie in their way, but we gene

rally

1767. June.

rally detected them in the attempt. At last, however, one of the midshipmen happened to come where they were standing with a new laced hat upon his head, and began to talk to one of them by signs : while he was thus engaged, another of them came behind him, and suddenly snatching off the hat, leapt over the taffarel into the sea, and swam away with it.

As we had no anchorage here, we stood along the shore, sending the boats at the same time to found at a less distance. As none of these canoes had fails, they could not keep up with us, and therefore foon paddled back towards the shore. The country has the most delightful and romantic appearance that can be imagined : towards the sea it is level, and is covered with fruit trees of various kinds, particularly the cocoa-nut. Among these are the houses of the inhabitants, consisting only of a roof, and at a distance having greatly the appearance of a long barn. The country within, at about the distance of three miles, rises into lofty hills, that are crowned with wood, and terminate in peaks, from which large rivers are precipitated into the sea. We saw no shoals, but found the island skirted by a reef of rocks, through which there are several openings into deep water. About three o'clock in the afternoon we brought to, a-breast of a large bay, where there was an appearance of anchorage. The boats were immediately sent to sound it, and while they were thus employed, I observed a great number of canoes gather round them. I suspected that the Indians had a design to attack them, and as I was very desirous to prevent mischief, I made a signal for the boats to come a-board, and at the same time, to intimidate the Indians, I fired a nine-pounder over their heads. As soon as the cutter began to stand toward the ship, the Indians in their canoes, though they had been startled by the thunder of our nine-pounder, endeavoured to cut her off. The boat, however, sailing faster than the canoes could paddle, foon got clear of those that were about her ; but some others, that were full of men, way-laid her in her course, and threw several stones into her, which wounded some of the people. Upon this the Officer on board fired a musquet, loaded with buck-shot, at the man

who

1767. who threw the first stone, and wounded him in the June. shoulder. The rest of the people in the canoes, as

foon as they perceived their companion wounded, leapt into the sea, and the other canoes paddled away, in great terror and confusion. As soon as the boats reached the ship, they were hoisted on board, and just as she was about to stand on, we observed a large canóe under fail, making after us. As I thought she might have some Chief on board, or might have been dispatched to bring me a message from some chief, I determined to wait for her. She sailed very fast, and was soon along-side the ship, but we did not observe among those on board any one that seemed to have an authority over the rest. One of them, however, stood up, and having made a speech, which continued about five minutes, threw on board a branch of the plantain tree. We understood this to be a token of peace, and we returned it, by handing over one of the branches of plantain that had been left on board by our first visitors : with this and some toys, that were afterwards presented to him, he appeared to be much gratified, and after a short time went away.

The officers who had been sent out with the boats, informed me that they had founded close to the reef, and found as great a depth of water as at the other islands : however, as I was now on the weather side of the iAand, I had reason to expect anchorage in running to leeward. I therefore took this course, but finding breakers that ran off to a great distance from the fouth end of the island, I hauled the wind, and continued turning to windward all night, in order to run down on the east side of the illand.

At five o'clock in the morning we made fail, the land bearing N. W. by W. diftant to leagues ; and there seemed to be land five leagues beyond it, to the N. E. a remarkable peak, like a fugar loaf, bore N. N. E. when we were about two leagues from the fore, which afforded a most delightful prospect, and was full of houses and inhabitants. We saw several large canoes near the shore, under fail, but they did not steer towards the ship. At noon, we were within two or three miles of the island, and then it bore from

S. W.

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »