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Voyages in the Southern Hemisphere, Vols. II - IIIVoyaging Accounts
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Other Accounts ...
Endeavour Voyage Maps
James Cook
Joseph Banks

Description of the Island, its Produce and Inhabitants


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Description of the Island, its Produce and Inhabitants (continued)

But I must not conclude my account of the domestic life of these people without mentioning their personal cleanliness. If that which lessens the good of life and increases the evil is vice, surely cleanliness is a virtue: the want of it tends to destroy both beauty and health, and mingles disgust with our best pleasures. The natives of Otaheite, both men and women, constantly wash their whole bodies in running water three times every day; once as soon as they rise in the morning, once at noon, and again before they sleep at night, whether the sea or river is near them or at a distance. I have already observed, that they wash not only the mouth, but the hands at their meals, almost between every morsel; and their clothes, as well as their persons, are kept without spot or stain; so that in a large company of these people, nothing is suffered but heat, which, perhaps, is more than can be said of the politest assembly in Europe.

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© Derived from Vols. II-III of the London 1773 edition: National Library of Australia call no. FERG 7243, page 209, 2004
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