The two Forsters, particularly the father, a man of great sagacity and of very acute discernment, paid much attention to this interesting subject. The information they procured is contained in their respective works, and is, as might be expected, very similar. From this it would have been easy to add to the contents of the text. But this has been avoided, principally because we may perhaps present the reader with the substance of Forster’s observations, in a connected form, on another occasion. That publication indeed is a treasure of most curious and important matter, deserving to be more extensively known, than there is reason to believe it now is.—E.
FROM ULIETEA TO NEW ZEALAND.
Passage from Ulietea to the Friendly Isles, with a Description of several Islands that were discovered, and the Incidents which happened in that Track.
On the 6th, being the day after leaving Ulietea, at eleven o’clock a.m., we saw land bearing N.W., which, upon a nearer approach, we found to be a low reef island about four leagues in compass, and of a circular form. It is composed of several small patches connected together by breakers, the largest lying on the N.E. part. This is Howe Island, discovered by Captain Wallis, who, I think, sent his boat to examine it; and, if I have not been misinformed, found a channel through, within the reef, near the N.W. part. The inhabitants of Ulietea speak of an uninhabited island about this situation, called by them Mopeha, to which they go at certain seasons for turtle. Perhaps, this may be the same; as we saw no signs of inhabitants upon it. Its latitude is 16 deg. 46’ S. longitude 154 deg. 8’ W.
From this day to the 16th, we met nothing remarkable, and our course was west southerly; the winds variable from north round by the east to S.W., attended with cloudy, rainy, unsettled weather, and a southerly swell. We generally brought-to, or stood upon a wind during night; and in the day made all the sail we could. About half an hour after sun-rise this morning, land was seen from the top-mast head, bearing N.N.E. We immediately altered the course, and steering for it, found it to be another reef island, composed of