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

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 705 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 14.
surprising than the splendour of the whole shew; and we learnt to our greater surprise, that this fleet was only the naval force of the single district of Atapooroo, and that all the other districts could furnish their quota of vessels in proportion to their size.  This account opened our eyes, in regard to the population of the island, and convinced us in a few moments, that it was much more considerable than we had hitherto supposed.  The result of a most moderate computation gave us one hundred and twenty thousand persons in the two peninsulas of Otabeite, and this calculation was afterwards confirmed to be very low, when we saw the fleet of the smallest district, which amounted to forty-four war-canoes, besides twenty or thirty of a smaller size.”—­G.F.

SECTION XII.

Some Account of a Visit from Otoo, Towha, and several other Chiefs; also of a Robbery committed by one of the Natives, and its Consequences, with general Observations on the Subject.

In the morning of the 27th, I received a present from Towha, consisting of two large hogs and some fruit, sent by two of his servants, who had orders not to receive any thing in return; nor would they when offered them.  Soon after I went down to Oparree in my boat, where, having found both this chief and the king, after a short stay, I brought them on board to dinner, together with Tarevatoo, the king’s younger brother, and Tee.  As soon as we drew near the ship, the admiral, who had never seen one before, began to express much surprise at so new a sight.  He was conducted all over the ship, every part of which he viewed with great attention.  On this occasion Otoo was the principal show-man; for, by this time, he was well acquainted with the different parts of the ship.  After dinner Towha put a hog on board, and retired, without my knowing any thing of the matter, or having made him any return either for this, or the present I had in the morning.  Soon after, the king and his attendants went away also.[1] Otoo not only seemed to pay this chief much respect, but was desirous I should do the same; and yet he was jealous of him, but on what account we knew not.  It was but the day before that he frankly told us, Towha was not his friend.  Both these chiefs when on board solicited me to assist them against Tiarabou, notwithstanding a peace at this time subsisted between the two kingdoms, and we were told their joint force was to go against Eimea.  Whether this was done with a view of breaking with their neighbours and allies if I had promised them assistance, or only to sound my disposition, I know not.  Probably they would have been ready enough to have embraced an opportunity, which would have enabled them to conquer that kingdom, and annex it to their own, as it formerly was.  Be this as it may, I heard no more of it; indeed, I gave them no encouragement.

Next day we had a present of a hog sent by Waheatoua, king of Tiarabou.  For this, in return, he desired a few red feathers, which were, together with other things, sent him accordingly.  Mr Forster and his party set out for the mountains, with an intent to stay out all night.  I did not go out of the ship this day.[2]

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