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Voyages in the Southern Hemisphere, Vol. IVoyaging Accounts
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Discovery of Otaheite


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Discovery of Otaheite (continued)

hour, and then threw it into the sea. Soon after, as we continued to make signs of invitation, a fine, stout, lively young man ventured on board: he came up by the mizen chains, and jumped out of the shrouds upon the top of the awning. We made signs to him to come down upon the quarter-deck, and handed up some trinkets to him: he looked pleased, but would accept of nothing till some of the Indians came along side, and after much talk, threw a few branches of plantain tree on board the ship. He then accepted our presents, and several others very soon came on board, at different parts of the ship, not knowing the proper entrance. As one of these Indians was standing near the gang-way, on the larboard side of the quarter-deck, one of our goats butted him upon the haunches: being surprised at the blow, he turned hastily about, and saw the goat raised upon his hind-legs, ready to repeat the blow. The appearance of this animal, so different from any he had ever seen, struck him with such terror, that he instantly leaped over board; and all the rest, upon seeing what had happened, followed his example with the utmost precipitation: they recovered however, in a short time, from their fright, and returned on board. After having a little reconciled them to our goats and sheep, I shewed them our hogs and poultry, and they immediately made signs that they had such animals as these. I then distributed trinkets and nails among them, and made signs that they should go on shore and bring us some of their hogs, fowls and fruit, but they did not seem to understand my meaning: they were, in the mean time, watching an opportunity to steal some of the things that happened to lie in their way, but we generally detected them in the attempt. At last, however, one of the midshipmen happened to come where they were standing, with a new laced hat upon his head, and began to talk to

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© Derived from Volume I of the London 1773 Edition: National Library of Australia call no. FERG 7243, page 434, 2004
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