A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 14 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 822 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 14.
the trees, and many canoes hauled up along the sandy beaches.  About half a mile from the shore a ledge of rocks level with the water, extended parallel to the land, on which the surf broke, leaving a smooth and secure harbour within.  The sun beginning to illuminate the plain, its inhabitants arose, and enlivened the scene.  Having perceived the large vessels on their coast, several of them hastened to the beach, launched their canoes, and paddled towards us, who were highly delighted in watching all their occupations.”—­G.F.
[2] “The natives on board, seeing us work so hard, assisted us in manning the capstern, hauling in ropes, and performing all sorts of labour.  If they had had the least spark of a treacherous disposition, they could not have found a better opportunity of distressing us; but they approved themselves good-natured, and friendly in this, as on all other occasions.”—­G.F.
[3] We tried all possible means to engage the people to sell some of their hogs to us, and offered hatchets, shirts, and other goods of value to the Taheitans; but still without success, their constant answer being, that these animals were the king’s (aree’s) property.  Instead of acquiescing in this refusal, and acknowledging the kind disposition of the natives, who furnished us at least with the means of recovering our strength, and restoring our stock, a proposal was made to the captains, by some persons in the ships, to sweep away, by force, a sufficient number of hogs for our use, and afterwards to return such a quantity of our goods in exchange to the natives, as we should think adequate to the spoil we had taken.  This proposal, which nothing but the most tyrannical principles, and the meanest selfishness could have dictated, was received with the contempt and indignation which it justly deserved.”—­G.F.
This remark is of an earlier date than what is mentioned in the text, but, in the whole, is more suitably introduced here.  It is to the praise of Cook, that his decision of character was founded on very liberal views of morality; and that he possessed independence of soul to manifest abhorrence of sinister suggestions, at the risk of losing both the advantage aimed at, and the partiality of those who made them.  An apprehension of giving offence to men who are either esteemed or felt to be useful, has perhaps occasioned as much iniquitous conduct where the law of the strongest might be adopted, as ever resulted from the influence of directly vicious principles.  But from this most mischievous weakness, it was one of the excellencies of that truly great man to be exempt.—­E.


An Account of several Visits to and from Otoo; of Goats being left on the Island; and many other Particulars which happened while the Ships lay in Matavai Bay.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 14 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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