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tended by several persons with short it necessary to resort to severe measures, elubs. This hostile appearance, follow. The chief, still urging the islanders on, ed by the blowing of the conch-shell, a very deservedly, and perhaps fortunately, sound which Cook observes he never fell a victim to the first shot that was knew to portend good, kept our glasses fired in defence. Terrified by this exfor a while riveted to the spot. To this ample, the natives kept closer under chief, it is supposed, for it was impossi. their bulwark; and though they contible to distinguish amongst the crowd, Mr nued to throw stones, and occasioned Peard made a handsome present, with considerable difficulty in extricating the which he was very well pleased, and no boats, their attacks were not so effectual apprehension of hostilities was entertain as before, nor sufficient to prevent the ed. It happened, however, that the pre- embarkation of the crew, all of whom sents were expended, and this officer was were got on board. returning to the boat for a fresh supply, “ Several dangerous contusions were when the natives, probably mistaking his received in the affair ; but, fortunately, no intentions, became exceedingly clamor. lives lost on our part; and it was the ous; and the confusion was farther in. opinion of the officers commanding the creased by a marine endeavouring to re- party, that the treacherous chief was the gain bis cap, which had been snatched only victim on that of the islanders, from his head. The natives took advan, though some of the officers thought they tage of the confusion, and redoubled their observed another man fall. Considering endeavours to pilfer, which our party the manner in which the party were surwere at last obliged to repel by threats, rounded, and the imminent risk to which and sometimes by force. At length, they were exposed, it is extraordinary they became so audacious, that there was that so few of the natives suffered ; and no longer any doubt of their intentions, the greatest credit is due to the officers or that a system of open plunder had and crew of both boats, for their forbearcommenced ; which, with the appearance ance on the occasion.” of clubs and sticks, and the departure of the women, induced Mr Peard, very ju
As little or no hope remained of diciously, to order his party into the entering into any peaceful relations boats. This seemed to be the signal for with the people of this place, the an assault : the chief who had received Blossom now pursued her course the present threw a large stone, which for Ducie's, and thence to Elizabeth struck Mr Peard forcibly upon the back, Island, which last, though small and and was immediately followed by a uninhabited, offers a curious example shower of missiles which darkened the of one of the several modes of forair. The natives in the water and about mation, by which islands have been, the boats, instantly withdrew to their and probably are, continually procomrades, who had run behind a bank duced in the Pacific. Volcanic apout of the reach of the muskets, which pearances are distinct in so many former experience alone could have of the principal groups, that no taught them to fear, for none had yet doubt can exist of the agency of that been fired by us.
phenomenon in the creation of a “ The stones, each of which weighed
great number; but, if influencing at about a pound, fell incredibly thick, and with such precision, that several of the
all the peculiar structure which
either of these two exhibits, it must seamen were knocked down under the thwarts of the boat, and every person
be exerted in very different manner was more or less wounded, except the
from that in which it commonly acts. female to whom Lieutenant Wainwright
In Ducie's Island, there seems to be had given protection, who, as if aware
but little difference from the usual of the skilfulness of her countrymen, sat
coral formation, except that, at the unconcerned upon the gunwale, until one
north-eastern and south-western ex
north-easter of the officers, with more consideration
tremities, projecting masses are for her safety than she herself possessed, thrown out with a less degree of inpushed her overboard, and she swam elination than presented by the ordiashore. A blank cartridge was at first nary sides of the island, and thus fired over the heads of the crowd; but two immense natural breakwaters forbearance, which, with savages, is gene are formed, which intercept the acrally mistaken for cowardice or inability, tion of the sea before it can reach only augmented their fury. The showers the entrance of a little lagoon formof stones were, if possible, increased, ed in the centre. “ It is singular," until the personal safety of all rendered Captain Beechey remarks, " that
these two buttresses are opposed to yards from the beach, with twenty-five the only two quarters whence their fathoms water over it, and there ended structure has to apprehend danger as abruptly as the former; a short disthat on the north-east, from the con tance beyond which, no bottom could be stant action of the trade wind; and gained with two hundred fathoms ol line. that on the other extremity, from the
Numerous echini live upon these ledges; long rolling swell from the south
and a variety of richly coloured fish play west, so prevalent in these latitudes;
over their surface, while some cray-fish and it is worthy of observation, that
inhabit the deeper sinuosities. The sea this barrier, which has the most pow.
rolls in successive breakers over these erful enemy to oppose, is carried
ledges of coral, and renders landing upon out much farther, and with less
them extremely difficult. It may, howabruptness, than the other.”
ever, be effected by anchoring the boat, Elizabeth Island has very peculiar
and veering her close into the surf, and
then, watching the opportunity, by jumpand distinct characters; and though
ing upon the ledge, and hastening to the great doubt may exist whether vol
shore before the succeeding roller apcanic agency had any sbare in its
proaches. In doing this, great caution production, as Captain Beechey ima
must be observed, as the reef is full of gines, yet his description is so mi
holes and caverns, and the rugged way is nute and clear, that it may lead to a strewed with sea-eggs, which inflict very true solution, even if his own be not painful wounds; and if a person fall into the correct one.
one of these hollows, his life will be great“We found that the island differed es.
ly endangered by the points of coral catch
ing his clothes, and detaining bim under sentially from all the others in its vicinity,
water. The beach, wbich appears at a and belonged to a peculiar formation, very distance to
distance to be composed of a beautiful few instances of wbich are in existence.
white sand, is wholly made up of small Wateo, and Savage Islands, discovered by
broken portions of the different species Captain Cook, are of this number, and,
and varieties of coral, intermixed with perhaps, also Malden Island, visited by shells of testaceous and crustaceous ani. Lord Byron in the Blonde. The island
mals.” is five miles in length, and one in breadth, and has a flat surface nearly eighty feet
It is this minute and comprehenabove the sea. On all sides, except the
sive detail-this dwelling upon each north, it is bounded by perpendicular cliffs particular without confusing the about fifty feet high, composed entirely whole, which gives to description of dead coral, more or less porous, honey. the stamp and impress of reality, combed at the surface, and hardening into wbich enables science to know and a compact, calcareous substance within, judge without the tangible presence possessing fracture of secondary lime of the object, and presents to the stone, and has a species of millepore in casual reader a clear and complete terspersed through it. These cliffs are picture, which no vague and general considerably undermined by the action of terms could convey. This was one of the waves, and some of them appear on the great points in that wonderful re. the eve of precipitating their superincum. formation which the Author of Wa. bent weight into the sea ; those which are verley worked in the world of novelless injured in this way, present no alter.
writers. Instead of loose descripnate ridges, or indication of the different
tions, uncertain figures, and a misty levels which the sea might have occupied
atmosphere of indefinite verbiage, at different periods; but a smooth sur
which enveloped every character of face, as if the island, which there is every
the former school, he substituted a probability has been raised by volcanic
clear and definite form, in which agency, had been forced up by one great subterraneous convulsion. The dead coral,
each feature and line had been of wbich the higher part of the island
marked and traced by a master's hand consists, is nearly circumscribed by ledges
and eye, and over which the pictuof living coral, which project beyond each resque spirit of a poetical mind spread other at different depths; on the northern
the magic sunshine of his own vivid side of the island, the first of these had and wonderful imagination. O:hers an easy slope from the beach, to a dis followed with infinitely less power, tance of about fifty yards, when it termic and less originality, but still an imnated abruptly about three fathoms under mense improvement was produced. the water. The next ledge had a greater Every man who knows any thing descent, and extended to two hundred intimately, will bave the means of describing it minutely; and though, communicate with its inhabitants to see in general reasoning, or even in the and partake of the pleasures of their little sallies of wit and imagination, it is domestic circle-and to learn from them necessary to possess the great talent the particulars of every transaction conof casting away the insignificant and nected with the fate of the Bounty; but, the worthless, yet it is the small fine in consequence of the approach of night, sbades, these minute details, which this gratification was deferred iintil the
U next morning, when, as we were steering give identity to description, and call
for the side of the island, on which Capup every particular scene in all its
tain Carteret has marked soundings, in individuality before the mind's eye.
the hope of being able to anchor the ship, Captain Beechey thus gives as true
we had the pleasure to see a boat, under and distinct pictures of what he saw,
sail, hastening towards us. At first, the as if he represented them by paint
complete equipment of this boat raised a ing to the material organ of vision.
doubt as to its being the property of the Nor is this confined to the scenery
islanders; for we expected to see only a
islanders: for we es alone; the actions and habits of the well-provided canoe in their possession, people with whom he is brought in and we therefore concluded that the boat contact are all treated in the same must belong to some whale-ship on the graphic way, and we as much see opposite side ; but we were soon agreeAdams, the mutineer of the Bounty, ably undeceived by the singular appearhis patriarchal customs, his interest ance of her crew, which consisted of old ing race, and his beautiful island, as Adams and all the young men of the if we had once been there ourselves, island. Before they ventured to take and memory called up all that we hold of the ship, they enquired if they then had seen. The history of that might come on board; and upon permisfamous mutiny has been already told sion being granted, they sprang up the by Captain Heywood, and ornament sides, and shook every officer by the hand ed in the poetry of Byron ; but the with undisguised feelings of gratification. account given of it by Adams him
“The activity of the young men outself to Captain Beechey, will still be stripped that of old Adams, who was conread with infinite pleasure, as well
sequently almost the last to greet us. He as the farther story of the nascent na
was in his sixty-fifth year, and was untion on Pitcairn Island, and of the
usually strong and active for his age, notstrange, but beautiful change from a
withstanding the inconvenience of concommunity of violent and criminal
siderable corpulency. He was dressed in Europeans, and wild licentious sa
a sailor's shirt and trowsers, and a loirvages, to a religious, sober, orderly
crowned hat, which he instinctively held
in his hand, until desired to put it on. He race, amongst whom violence is un
still retained his sailor's gait, doffing his known, and the lightest promise in
hat, and smoothing down bis bald foreviolable-perhaps the grandest and head whenever he was addressed by the most splendid instance on record of
officers. the true influence of that bright re “ It was the first time he had been on ligion which interested knaves have board a ship of war since the mutiny, and sometimes corrupted, and proud his mind naturally reverted to scenes that fools have pretended to despise. could not fail to produce a temporary em.
As a whole, this account of the barrassment, heightened, perhaps, by the mutineers of the Bounty would be familiarity with which he found himself too long for insertion here, and to addressed by persons of a class with those mutilate it would be injustice to the whom he had been accustomed to obey. author and to the public. The pre. Apprehension for his safety formed no sent state of the island and its inha- part of his thoughts; he had received too bitants, however, is more within the many demonstrations of the good feeling limits of a justifiable extract, and is that existed towards him, both on the part full of pleasant feelings and antici. , of the British Government and of indivi. pations - But first, the appearance of duals, to entertain any alarm on that head: old Adams himself.
and as every person endeavoured to set his
mind at rest, be very soon made himself “ The interest which was excited by the at home. announcement of Pitcairn Island from the " The young men, ten in number, were mast-bead, brought every person upon tall, robust, and healthy, with good-natu. deck, and produced a train of reflections red countenances, which would any where that momentarily increased our anxiety to have procured them a friendly reception;
and with a simplicity of manner, and a fear ward, and north-westward, thicker groves of doing wrong, which at once prevented of palm-trees rise in an impenetrable wood, the possibility of giving offence. Unac- from two ravines which traverse the hills quainted with the world, they asked a in various directions to their summit. number of questions which would have Above the one, to the westward, a lofty applied better to persons with whom they mountain rears its head, and towards the had been intimate, and who had left them sea terminates in a fearful precipice filled but a short time before, than to perfect with caverns, in which the different sea. strangers ; and enquired after ships and fowl find an undisturbed retreat. Immepeople we had never heard of. Their diately round the village are the small en. dress, made up of the presents which had closures for fattening pigs, goats, and been given them by the masters and sea- poultry ; and beyond them, the cultivated men of merchant ships, was a perfect cari. grounds producing the banana, plantain, cature. Some had on long black coats, melon, yam, taro, sweet potatoes, appai, without any other article of dress, except tee, and cloth plant, with other useful trowsers, some shirts without coats, and roots, fruits, and shrubs, which extend far others waistcoats without either ; none up the mountain, and to the southward; had shoes or stockings, and only two pos but in this particular direction they are sessed bats, neither of which seemed like excluded from the view, by an immense ly to hang long together.”
banyan tree, two hundred paces in cirAfter landing the observatory, and
cumference, whose foliage and branches
form of themselves a canopy impervious partaking the hospitality of the to the rays of the sun. Every cottage has islanders, the English party were its outhouse for making cloth, its baking shewn to the beds prepared for them, place, its sty, and its poultry. house. consisting of maitrasses of palm “Within the enclosure of palm-trees is leaves, covered with native cloth, the cemetery where the few persons who and sheets of the same material. The bad died on the island, together with those evening hymn, sung by the islanders, who met with violent deaths, are depositafter the lights were extinguished, ed. Besides the houses above mentioned, pleasingly disturbed the first sleep of there are three or four others built upon their guests, and the morning hymn the plantations beyond the palm-groves. broke their early dreams; but the One of these, situated higher up the hill evening and the night passed away than the village, belongs to Adams, who otherwise in calm repose ; and, the has retired from the bustle of the hamlet next day, Captain Beechey proceeded to a more quiet and sequestered spot, to examine the island more minutely, where he enjoys the advantages of an ele
vated situation, so desirable in warm coun“ We assembled at breakfast about tries; and there are four other cottages to noon, the usual eating hour of the natives, the eastward, which belong to the Youngs though they do not confine themselves to ard Quintals. that period exactly, but take their meal “All these cottages are strongly built of whenever it is sufficiently cooked ; and wood, in an oblong form, and thatched with afterwards availed ourselves of tbeir prof. the leaves of the palm-tree, bent round the fered services to shew us the island, and stem of the same branch, and laced hori. under their guidance, first inspected the zontally to rafters, so placed as to give a village, and wbat lay in its immediate proper pitch to the roof. The greater vicinity. In an adjoining bouse, we found part buve an upper story, which is approtwo young girls seated upon the ground, priated to sleeping, and contains four beds employed in the laborious exercise of beat. built in the angles of the room, each suffi. ing out the bark of the cloth-tree, which ciently large for three or four persons to they intended to present to us, on our de. lie on. They are made of wood of the parture, as a keepsake. The hamlet con. cloth-tree, and are raised eighteen inches sisted of five cottages, built more substan. above the floor; a mattress of palmtially than neatly upon a cleared patch of leaves is laid upon the planks, and above ground, sloping to the northward, from it three sheets of the cloth-plant, which the high land of the interior, to the cliffs form an excellent substitute for linen. which overhang the sea, of which the The lower room generally contains one houses command a distant view in a or more beds, but it is always used as northern direction. In the NE. quarter, their eating-room, and has a broad table the horizon may also be seen peeping be in one part, with several stools placed tween the stems of the lofty palms, whose round it. The floor is elevated about a graceful branches nod like ostrich plumes foot from the ground, and, as well as the to the refreshing trade-wind. To the north sides of the house, is made of stout plank,
and not of bamboo or stone, as stated by remedies are as simple as their manner of Captain Folger; indeed they have not a living, and are limited to salt water, hot piece of bamboo on the island; nor have ginger tea, or abstinence, according to the they any mats. The floor is a fixture, nature of the complaint. They have no but the side-boards are let into a groove medicines, nor do they appear to require in the supporters, and can be removed at any, as these remedies have hitherto been pleasure, according to the state of the found suficient. weather, and the whole side may, if re- “ After their noontide meal, if their quired, be laid open. The lower room grounds do not require their attention, communicates with the upper by a stout and the weather be fine, they go a little ladder in the centre, and leads up through way out to sea in their canoes, and catch a trapdoor into the bedroom."
fish, of which they have several kinds, And again,
large, and sometimes in abundance; but
it seldom happens that they have this “During the period we remained upon
time to spare ; for the cultivation of the the island, we were entertained at the
ground, repairing their boats, houses, and board of the natives, sometimes dining with one person, and sometimes with an
making fishing lines, with other employ
ments, generally occupy the whole of otber: their meals, as I have before sta
each day. At sunset they assemble at ted, were not confined to hours, and al
prayers as before, first offering their ori. ways consisted of baked pig, yams, and
son and thanksgiving, and then chanting taro, and more rarely of sweet potatoes.
hymns. After this follows their evening “ The productions of the island being
meal, and at an early hour, having again very limited, and intercourse with the
said their prayers, and chanted the even. rest of the world much restricted, it may be readily supposed their meals cannot be
ing hymn, they retire to rest; but before greatly varied. However, they do their
they sleep, each person again offers up best with what they have, and cook it in
a short prayer upon his bed.
« Such is the distribution of time different ways, the pig excepted, which is always baked. There are several goats
among the grown people; the younger
part attend at school at regular bours, upon the island, but they dislike their flesh, as well as their milk. Yams con
and are instructed in reading, writing, stitute their principal food; these are
and arithmetic. They have very fortu. broiled, baked, or made into pillihey
nately found an able and willing master
in John Buffet, who belonged to a ship (cakes), by being mixed with cocoa-nuts,
wbich visited the island, and was so infaor bruised and formed into a soup. Ba
tuated with their behaviour, being him. nanas are mashed and made into pancakes, or, like the yam, united with the milk of
self naturally of a devout and serious turni
of mind, that he resolved to remain the cocoa-nut, into pillihey, and eaten with
among them; and, in addition to the inmolasses, extracted from the tee-root.
struction of the children, bas taken upon The taro-root, by being rubbed, makes a
himself the duty of clergyman, and is the very good substitute for bread, as well as
oracle of the community. During the the bananas, plantains, and appai. Their
whole time I was with them, I never common beverage is pure water, but they
heard them indulge in a joke, or other made for us a tea, extracted from the tee
levity, and the practice of it is apt to give plant, flavoured with ginger, and sweetened with the juice of the sugar-cane.
offence: they are so accustomed to take When alone, this beverage and fowl soup
what is said in its literal meaning, that are used only for such as are ill. They
irony was always considered a falsehood, seldom kill a pig, but live mostly upon
in spite of explanation. They could not fruit and vegetables.
see the propriety of utrering what was
The duty of saying grace was performed by John Buffet, a
not strictly true, for any purpose what.
ever." recent settler among them, and their clergyman; but if he was not present, it fell Some just and kindly observations upon the eldest of the company. They of Captain Beechey's, and the pleasing have all a great dislike to spirits, in con- information of his Majesty's governsequence of M.Coy having killed bimself ment having taken measures for the by too freean indulgence in them; but wine welfare and benefit of this little coin moderation is never refused. With lony, may well be added. this simple diet, and being in the daily “ We soon found, through our interhabit of rising early, and taking a great course with these excellent people, that deal of exercise in the cultivation of their they had no wants excepting such as had grounds, it was not surprising that we been created by an intercourse with found them so athletic and free from com vessels. Nature has been extremely plaints. When illness does occur, their bountiful to them; and necessity has