12 August 1770
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12 August 1770

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Joseph Banks



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in Falconer's Dictionary of the Marine
12 August 1770

Sunday 12th ^when I immediatly went upon the highest hill on the Island where to my mortification I discoverd a reef of Rocks laying about 2 or 3 Leagues without the Island, extending in a line NW and SE farther than I could see on which the Sea broke very high   this ^however gave me great hopes ^that they were the outermost shoals, as I did not doubt but what I should be able to get without them for there appear'd to be several breaks or Partitions in the reef and deep water between it and the Islands   I stay'd upon this hill untill near sun set but the weather continued so hazy all the time that I could not see above 4 or 5 Leagues round me so that I came down much disap disapointed in the prospect I expected to have had. but being in hopes the morning might prove clearer and give me a better View of the Shoals. with this view I stay'd all night upon the Island, and at 3 in the Morning sent the Pinnace with one of the Mates I had with me to sound between ^the Island and the reefs and to examine one of the breaks or Channells and in the mean time I went again upon the hill where I arrived by sun rise but found it much hazier than in the evening —

About noon the Pinnace return'd haveing been out as far as the reef and found from 15 to 28 fathoms water. it blowed so hard that they durst not venture into one of the Channells which the Mate said seem'd to him to be very narrow but this did not discourage me for I thought from the place he was at he must have seen it at a disadvantage. Before I quit this Island I shall desirablecribe it. It lies as I have before observed observed about 5 Leagues from the Main, it is about 8 Miles in circuit and of a height sufficient to be seen 10 or 12 Leagues it is mostly high land very rocky and barren except on the NW side where there are some Sandy bays and low land which last is cover'd with thin long grass Trees, &Ca the same as upon the Main here is also fresh water in two places the one is a runing stream the water a little brackish where I tasted it which was close to the sea, the other is a standing Pool close behind the sandy beach of good sweet water as I dare say the other is a little higher up way from the Sea beach: The only land-animals we saw here were Guanoes or Lizards and these seem'd to be pretty plenty whenceich occasioned my nameing the Island Lizard Island The inhabitants of the Main Visit this Island at some seasons of the year for we saw the ruens of several of their hutts and heaps of Shells &Ca

SE 4 or 5 Miles from this Island lay the other two high Islands which are very small compared to this and near them lay three other yet smaller and lower Islands and several Shoals or Reefs especially to the SE. There is however a clear passage from Cape Flattery to these Islands and even quite out to the ^outer Reefs leaving the above Islands to the SE and Lizard Island to the NW

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© Transcription of National Library of Australia, Manuscript 1 page 276, 2004
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