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we laid down our arms and began to gather celery, which grew here in great plenty: After a little time we recollected to have seen some of the people hide themselves in a cave of one of the rocks, we therefore went towards the
flace, when an old Indian, who proved to be the chief that had presented with a piece of broad-cloth in the morning, came out with his wife and his brother, and in a supplicating posture, put themselves under our protection. We spoke kindly to them, and the old man then told us that he had another brother, who was one of those that had been wounded by the small shot, and enquired with much solicitude and concern if he would die. We assured him that he would not, and at the same time put into his hand both a musket-ball and some small shot, telling him, that those only who were wounded with the ball would die, and that the others would recover; at the same time assuring him, that if we were attacked again, we should certainly defend ourselves with the ball, which would wound them mortally. Having now taken courage, they came and sat down by us, and, as tokens of our perfect amity, we made them presents of such trifles as we happened to have about us.
Soon after we re-embarked in our boats, and having rowed to another cove in the same island, climbed a neighbouring hill, which commanded the country to a considerable distance. The prospect was very uncommon and romantic, consisting of innumerable islands, which formed as many harbours, where the water was as smooth as a millpool: We saw also many towns, scattered houses, and plantations, the country being much more populous than any we had seen. One of the towns was very near us, from which many of the Indians advanced, taking great pains to shew us that they were unarmed, and in their gestures and countenances, expressing great meekness and humility. In the mean time, some of our people, who, when the Indians were to be punished for a fraud, assumed the inexorable justice of a Lycurgus, thought fit to break into one of their plantations, and dig up some potatoes: For this offence I ordered each of them to be punished with twelve lashes,
genial to that part of it, which, on the whole, receives the least modification of what is natural, from the restraints of education. The darling dreams of Rousseau, alas! have no prototype in the history of our species. after which two of them were discharged; but the third, insisting that it was no crime in an Englishman to plunder an Indian plantation, though it was a crime in an Indian to defraud an Englishman of a nail, I ordered him back into his confinement, from which I would not release him till he had received six lashes more.
On the 30th, there being a dead calm, and no probability of our getting to sea, I sent the master, with two boats, to sound the harbour; and all the forenoon had several canoes about the ship, who traded in a very fair and friendly manner. In the evening we went ashore upon the main, where the people received us very cordially; but we found nothing worthy of notice.
In this bay we were detained by contrary winds and calms several days, during which time our intercourse with the natives was continued in the most peaceable and friendly manner, they being frequently about the ship, and we ashore, both upon the islands and the main. In one of our visits to the continent, an old man shewed us the instrument they use in staining their bodies, which exactly resembled those that were employed for the same purpose at Otaheite. We saw also the man who was wounded in attempting to steal our buoy: The ball had passed through the fleshy part of his arm, and grazed his breast; but the wound, under the care of nature, the best surgeon, and a simple diet, the best nurse, was in a good state, and seemed to give the patient neither pain nor apprehension.1 We saw also the brother
1 Dr Hawkeswortli is.much given to this silly sort of cant, more gratifying to vulgar prejudice, than becoming a scholar, or a man of science. One knows not how to show its absurdity better than, by merely directing the reader to consider for a moment, the things that are put in contrast or compared together. If he cannot be at the trouble of this, or, if attempting it, he finds his optics will not penetrate the mist, let him ask himself whether dame Nature is a good setter of bones, or is very expert in stopping dangerous bleedings from wounded arteries;—or if a simple diet, say for example hasty-pudding and water-gruel, personified by any fertility of poetic fancy, can smooth one's pillow when his head aches, or bathe one's body when burning with fever? No good surgeon pretends to heal wounded parts, but he is positively useful nevertheless, by placing them so as to render the efforts of nature efficient towards healing: And no nurse, however conceited, ever had the least inclination to be stewed down into jelly, or made a fricasee of, for the nourishment of her patient, though she can help him to his caudle and wine very delectably! But, to be sure, where a wound gave neither pain nor apprehension, as is mentioned of our old chief, who had been wounded with small shot in our skirmish: They had struck his thigh obliquely, and though several of them were still in the flesh, the wound seemed to be attended with neither danger nor pain. We found among their plantations the morwpapyrifera, of which these people, as well as those of Otaheite, make cloth; but here the plant seems to be rare, and we saw no pieces of the cloth large enough for any use but to wear by way of ornament in their ears.
Having one day landed in a very distant part of the bay, the people immediately fled, except one old man, who accompanied us wherever we went, and seemed much pleased with the little presents we made him. We came at last to a little fort, built upon a small rock, which at high water was surrounded by the sea, and accessible only by a ladder: We perceived that he eyed us with a kind of restless solicitude as we approached it, and upon our expressing a desire to enter it, he told us that his wife was there: He saw that our curiosity was not diminished by this intelligence, and after some hesitation, he said, if we would promise to offer no indecency he would accompany us: Our promise was readily given, and he immediately led the way. The ladder consisted of steps fastened to a pole, but we found the ascent both difficult and dangerous. When we entered we found three women, who, the moment they saw us, burst into tears of terror and surprise: Some kind words, and a few presents, soon removed their apprehensions, and put them into good humour. We examined the house of our old friend, and by his interest two others, which were all that the fortification contained, and having distributed a few more presents, we parted with mutual satisfaction. At four o'clock in the morning of the 5th of December, we weighed, with a light breeze, but it being variable, with frequent calms, we made little way. We kept turning out of the bay till the afternoon, and about ten o'clock we were suddenly becalmed, so that the ship would neither wear nor stay, and the tide or current setting strong, she drove towards land so fast, that before any measures could be taken for her security she was within a cable's length of the breakers:
tioned in the text, it is very likely, that both nature and diet are quite different beings from what are so called in our corner of the world. If so, Dr H. ought to have given their history, as a genus incognitum. But this is idle.—E.
breakers: We had thirteen fathom water, but the ground was so foul that we did not dare to drop our anchor; the pinnace therefore was immediately hoisted out to take the ship in tow, and the men, sensible of their danger, exerting themselves to the utmost, and a faint breeze springing up off the land, we perceived with unspeakable joy that she made head-way, after having been so near the shore that Tupia, who was not sensible of our hair's breadth escape, was at this very time conversing with the people upon the beach, whose voices were distinctly heard, notwithstanding the roar of the breakers. We now thought all danger was over, but about an hour afterwards, just as the man in the chains had cried "Seventeen fathom," the ship struck. The shock threw us all into the utmost consternation; Mr Banks, who had undressed himself, and was stepping into bed, ran hastily up to the deck, and the man in the chains called out " Five fathom ;" by this time, the rock on which we had struck being to windward, the ship went off without having received the least damage, and the water very soon deepened to twenty fathom.
This rock lies half a mile W.N.W. of(thenorthermost or outermost island on the south-east side of the bay. We had light airs from the land, with calms, till nine o'clock the next morning, when we got out of the bay, and a breeze springing up at N.N.W. we stood out to sea.
This bay, as I have before observed, lies on the west side of Cape Bret, and I named it the Bay of Islands, from the great number of islands which line its shores, and from several harbours equally safe and commodious, where there is room and depth for any number of shipping. That in which we lay is on the south-west side of the south-westermost island, called Maturaro, on the south-east side of the bay. I have made no accurate survey of this bay, being discouraged by the time it would cost me; I thought also that it was sufficient to be able to affirm that it afforded us good anchorage, and refreshment of every kind. It was not the season for roots, but we had plenty of fish, most of which, however, we purchased of the natives, for we could catch very little ourselves either with net or line. When we shewed the natives our seine, which is such as the king's ships are generally furnished with, they laughed at it, and in triumph produced their own, which was indeed of an enormous size, and made of a kind of grass, which is very
Strong: strong: It was five fathom deep, and by the room it took up, it could not be less than three or four hundred fathom long. Fishing seems indeed to be the chief business of life in this part of the country; we saw about all their towns a great number of nets, laid in heaps like hay-cocks, and covered with a thatch to keep them from the weather, and we scarcely entered a house where some of the people were not employed in making them. The fish we procured here were sharks, stingrays, sea-bream, mullet, mackrel, and some others.
The inhabitants in this bay are far more numerous than in any other part of the country that we had before visited; it did not appear to us that they were united under one head, and though their towns were fortified, they seemed to live together in perfect amity.
It is high water in this bay at the full and change of the moon, about eight o'clock, and the tide then rises from six to eight feet perpendicularly. It appears from such observations as I was able to make of the tides upon the seacoast, that the flood comes from the southward; and I have reason to think that there is a current which comes from the westward, and sets along the shore to the S.E. or S.S.E. as the land happens to lie.5
Ranaefrom the Bay of Islands round North Cape to Quern Cliarlotte's Sound; and a Description of that Part of the Coast.
On Thursday the 7th of December, at noon, Cape Bret bore S.S.E. \ E. distant ten miles, and our latitude, by observation, was 34* 5ff S.; soon after we made several observations of the sun and moon, the result of which made our longitude 185° 36' W. The wind being against us, we had made but little way. In the afternoon, we stood in shore, and fetched close under the Cavalles, from which islands the main trends W. by N.: Several canoes put off
3 Some sketches of the Bay of Islands, and a good deal of valuable information about it, are given by Mr Savage in his Accouatof New Zealand, to which we shall be indebted hereafter.-—E.