Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

afterwards applied with great advantage, and through these holes a kind of plaited cordage is passed, so as to hold the planks strongly together : The seams are caulked with dried rushes, and the whole outside of the vessed is paid with a gummy juice, which some of their trees produce in great plenty, and which is a very good succedaneum for pitch.

The wood which they use for their large canoes, is that of the apple-tree, which grows very tall and straight. Several of them that were measured, were near eight feet in the girth, and from twenty to forty to the branches, with very little diminution in the size "Our carpenter said, that in other, respects it was not a good wood for the purpose, being very light. The small canoes are nothing more than the hollow trunk of the bread-fruit tree, which is still more light and spongy. The trunk of the bread-fruit tree is six feet in girth, and about twenty feet to the branches

Their principal weapons are stones, tbrown either with the hand or sling, and bludgeons ; for though they have bows and arrows, the arrows are only fit to knock down a bird, none of them being pointed, but headed only with a round stone.

I did not see one turtle all the while I lay off this island; but, upon shewing some small ones which I brought from Queen Charlotte's Ísland, to the inhabitants, they made signs that they had them of a much larger size. I very much regretted my having lost our he.goat, which died soon after we left St lago, and that neither of our she-goats, of which we had two, were with kid. If the he-goat had lived, I would have put them all on shore at this place, and I would have left a she-goat here if either of them had been with kids and I doubt not, but that in a few years they would have stocked the island.

The climate here appears to be very good, and the island to be one of the mosi healthy as well as delightful spots in the world. We saw no appearance of disease among the inhabitants. The hills are covered with wood, and the vallies with herbage ; and the air in general is so pure, that, notwithstanding the heat, our flesh meat kept very

well two days, and our fish one. We met with no frog, toad, scorpion, centipied, or serpent of any kind : And the only troublesome insects that we saw were ants, of which there were but few. The south-east part of the island seems to be better cultivated and inhabited than where we lay, for we saw every day boats come round from thence laden with plantains and other fruit, and we always found greater plenty, and a lower price, soon after their arrival, than before.

tivated done

The tide rises and falls very little, 'and, being governed by the winds, is very uncertain; thongh they generally blow from the E. to the S. E., and for the most part a pleasant breeze.

The benefit that we received while we lay off this island, with respect to the health of the ship's company, was beyond our most sanguine expectations, for we had not now an invalid on board, except the two lieutenants and myself, and we were recovering, though still in a very feeble condition, ibadet 2. It is certain that none of our people contracted the vene real disease here, and therefore, as they had free commerce with great numbers of the women, there is the greatest probability that it was not then known in the country. It was, however, found here by Captain Cook, in the Endeavour, and as no European vesselt is known to have visited this island before Captain Cook's arrival, but the Dolpbin, and the Boudeuse and Etoil, commanded by M.Bougainville, the reproach of having contaminated, with that dreadful pest, a race of happy people, to whom its miseries had till then been unknowil, must be due either to him or to me, to Enga land or to France; and I think myself happy to be able to exculpate myself and my country beyond the possibility of doubtJsOY.

It is well known that the surgeon on board his majesty's ships keeps a list of the persons who are sick on board, specifying their diseases, and the times when they came under his care, and when they were discharged. It happened that I was once at the pay-table on board a ship, when several sailors objected to the payment of the surgeon, alleging, that although he had discharged them from the list, and reported them to be cured, yet their cure was incomplete. From this time, it has been my constant practice when the surgeon reported a man to be cured, who had been upon the sick-list, to call the man before me, and ask him whether the report was true: If he alleged that any symptoms of his complaint remained, I continued him upon the list; if not, I required him, as a confirmation of the surgeon's report, to sign the book, which was always

[ocr errors]

done in my presence. A copy of the sick-list on board the Dolphin, during this voyage, signed by every man in my presence, when he was discharged well, in confirmation of the surgeon's report, written in my own hand, and confirmed by my affidavit, I have deposited in the Admiralty ; by which it appears, that the last man on board the ship, in her voyage outward, who was upon the sick-list for the venereal disease, except one who was sent to England in the store-ship, was discharged cured, and signed the book on the 27th of December, 1766, near six months before our arrival at Otaheite, which was on the 19th of June, 1767 ; and that the first man who was upon the list for that disease, in our return bome, was entered on the 26th of February, 1768, six months after we left the island, which was on the 26th of July, 1767 ; so that the ship’s company was entirely free fourteen months within one day, the very middle of which time we spent at Otaheite, and the man who was first entered as a venereal patient, on our return home, was known to have contracted the disease at the Cape of Good

Hopes where we then layotswbaiw at bustused W wono Algode 9290f baca dor o lesa bahw013) felge dr bolal sal godt bertso bas met bmorsos tot uongo usb plem9iSECTLON IX.baslar tal mor Passage from Otaheite to Tinian, with some Account of several

peb ve bus, odie dingligv9non sagitario other Islands that were discovered in the South Seas. on lit bxswipow.990005 Wo 1991a ot boundhoga

Having made sail from King George the Third's Island, we proceeded along the shore of the Duke of York's Island, at the distance of about two miles. There appeared to be good bays in

ys in every part of it, and in the middle a fine harbour; but

I did not think it worth while to go on shore. The middle and west end is very mountainous, the east end is lower, and the coast, just within the beach, is covered with cocoa-nut, bread-fruit, apple, and plantain trees.

At day-light, the next morning, we saw land, for which we made sail, and ran along the lee-side of it. On the weather-side there were very great breakers, and the lee-side was rocky, but in many places there appeared to be good anchorage... We saw..

but few inhabitants, and they appeared to live in a manner very different from those of King George's Island, their habitations being only small huts. We saw many cocoa-nut and other trees upon the

shore;

[graphic]

shore; but all of them had their heads blown away, probably in a hurricane. This island is about six miles long, and has a mountain of considerable height in the middle, which seems to be fertile. It lies in latitude 17° 28' S., and longitude, by our last observation, '151° 4° W. and I called it Sir Charles Saunders's Island. 174

On the 29th, the variation of the compass, by azimuth, was 7° 52' E.; and early the next morning, at day-break, we saw land bearing from N. by E. to N.W. We stood for it, but could find no anchorage, the being surrounded by breakers. We saw ,

en orang but no inhabitants. A few cocoa-nut trees were growing on the lee-part of it, and I called it Lord Howe's Island. It is about ten miles long, and four broad, and lies in latitude 16° 46' Suy longitude, by observation, 154° 13' W.

In the afternoon, we saw land bearing w. by N. and stood for it. At five o'clock, we saw breakers running a great way out to the southward, and soon after, low land to the S.W. and breakers all about it in every direction.

We turned to windward all night, and as soon as it was light, crowded sail to get round these shoals. At nine we got round them, and named them Scilly Islands. They are a group of islands or shoals extremely dangerous ; for in the night, however clear the weather, and by day, if it is hazy, a ship may run upon them without seeing land. They lie in latitude 16° 28' S. longitude 155° 30' W.

We continued to steer our course westward, till daybreak on the 13th of August, when we saw land bearing W. by S. and hauled towards it. At eleven o'clock in the forenoon, we saw more land in the W.S.W. At noon, the first tand that we saw, which proved to be an island, bore W. S. distant about five leagues, and had the appearance of a sugar-loaf; the middle of the other land, which was also an island, and appeared in a peak, bore W.S.W. distant six leagues. To the first, which is nearly circular, and three miles over, I gave the name of Boscawen's Island; and the other, which is three miles and a half long, and two broad, I called Keppel's Isle. Port Royal' at this time bore E.49 104 S. distant 478 leagues.

At two o'clock, being about two miles distant from Boscawen's Island, we saw several of the inhabitants; but Keppel's Isle being to windward, and appearing more likely to afford us anchorage, we hauled up for it. At six, it was, not more than a mile and a half distant, and, with our glasses, we saw many of the inhabitants upon the beach; but there being breakers at a considerable distance from the shore, we stood off and on all night..tile,

nota

At four o'clock the next morning, we sent off the boats to sound, and visit the island; and as soon as it was light, we ran down and lay over-against the middle of it. At noon, the boats returned, and reported that they had run within a cable's length of the island, but could find no ground : That seeing a reef of rocks lie off it, they had hauled round it, and got into a large deep bay which was full of rocks: That they then sounded without the bay, and found anchorage from fourteen to twenty fathom, with a bottom of sand and coral : That afterwards they went again into the bay, and found a rivulet of good water, but the shore being rocky, went in search of a better landingplace, which they found about half a mile farther, and went ashore. They reported also, that from the water to this landing-place, a good rolling-way might be made for supplying the ship, but that a strong guard would be necessary, to prevent molestation from the inhabitants. They saw ng hogs, but brought off two fowls and some cocoa-nuts, plantains, and bananas." While the boats were on shore, two canoes came up to them with six men : They seened to be peaceably inclined, and were much the same kind of peo ple as the inhabitants of King George's Island, but they were clothed in a kind of matting, and the first joint of their little fingers had been taken off; at the same time about fifty more came down from the country, to within about an hundred yards of them, but would advance no farther. When our people had made what observations they could, they put off, and three of the natives from the canoes came into one of the boats, but when she got about half a inile from the shore, they all suddenly jumped overboard, and swam back again.

Having received this account, I considered that the watering here would be tedious, and attended with great fa-, tigue: That it was now the depth of winter in the southern hemisphere, that the ship was leaky, that the tudder shook the stern very můch, and that what

other damagë she might have received in her bottom could not be known. That for these reasons, she was very unfit for the bad weather which she would certainly meet with either in going round

Cape

« ZurückWeiter »