A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 16 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 658 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 16.

At Eimeo, we abundantly supplied the ships with firewood.  We had not taken in any at Otaheite, where the procuring this article would have been very inconvenient; there not being a tree at Matavai but what is useful to the inhabitants.  We also got here good store of refreshments, both in hogs and vegetables; that is, bread-fruit and cocoa-nuts; little else being in season.  I do not know that there is any difference between the produce of this island and of Otaheite; but there is a very striking difference in their women that I can by no means account for.  Those of Eimeo are of low stature, have a dark hue, and, in general, forbidding features.  If we met with a fine woman among them, we were sure, upon enquiry, to find that she had come from some other island.

The general appearance of Eimeo is very different from that Otaheite.  The latter rising in one steep hilly body, has little low land, except some deep valleys; and the flat border that surrounds the greatest part of it toward the sea.  Eimeo, on the contrary, has hills running in different directions, which are very steep and rugged, leaving, in the interspaces, very large valleys, and gently-rising grounds about their sides.  These hills, though of a rocky disposition, are, in general, covered, almost to their tops, with trees; but the lower parts, on the sides, frequently only with fern.  At the bottom of the harbour, where we lay, the ground rises gently to the foot of the hills, which run across nearly in the middle of the island; but its flat border, on each side, at a very small distance from the sea, becomes quite steep.  This gives it a romantic cast, which renders it a prospect superior to any thing we saw at Otaheite.  The soil, about the low grounds, is a yellowish and pretty stiff mould; but, upon the lower hills, it is blacker and more loose; and the stone that composes the hills, is, when broken, of a blueish colour, but not very compact texture, with some particles of glimmer interspersed.  These particles seem worthy of observation.  Perhaps the reader will think differently of my judgment, when I add, that, near the station of our ships, were two large stones, or rather rocks, concerning which the natives have some superstitious notions.  They consider them as eatooas, or divinities; saying, that they are brother and sister, and that they came by some supernatural means from Ulieta.

SECTION VI.

Arrival at Huaheine.—­Council of the Chiefs.—­Omai’s Offerings, and Speech to the Chiefs.—­His Establishment in this Island agreed to.—­A House built, and Garden planted for him.—­Singularity of his Situation.—­Measures taken to insure his Safety.—­Damage done by Cock-roaches on board the Ships.—­A Thief detected and punished.—­Fire-works exhibited.—­Animals left with Omai.—­His Family.—­Weapons.—­Inscription on his House.—­His Behaviour on the Ships leaving the Island.—­Summary View of his Conduct and Character.—­Account of the two New Zealand Youths.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 16 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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