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Voyages in the Southern Hemisphere, Vols. II - IIIVoyaging Accounts
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On this day ...
9 August 1769

Endeavour Voyage Maps
James Cook
Joseph Banks

Description of Several other Islands


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Description of Several other Islands (continued)

On the 9th, having spent the morning in trading with the canoes, we took the opportunity of a breeze, which sprung up at East, and having stopped our leak, and got the fresh stock which we had purchased on board, we sailed out of the harbour. When we were sailing away, Tupia strongly urged me to fire a shot towards Bolabola, possibly as a mark of his resentment, and to shew the power of his new allies: in this I thought proper to gratify him, though we were seven leagues distant.

While we were about these islands, we expended very little of the ship’s provisions, and were very plentifully supplied with hogs, fowls, plantains and yams, which we hoped would have been of great use to us in our course to the southward; but the hogs would not eat European grain of any kind, pulse, or bread-dust, so that we could not preserve them alive; and the fowls were all very soon seized with a disease that affected the head so, that they continued to hold it down between their legs till they died: much dependence therefore must not be placed in live stock taken on board at these places, at least not till a discovery is made of some food that the hogs will eat, and some remedy for the disease of the poultry.

Having been necessarily detained at Ulietea so long, by the carpenters in stopping our leak, we determined to give up our design of going on shore at Bolabola, especially as it appeared to be difficult of access.

To these six islands, Ulietea, Otaha, Bolabola, Huaheine, Tubai, and Maurua, as they lie contiguous to each other, I gave the names of SOCIETY ISLANDS, but did not think it proper to distinguish them separately by any other names than those by which they were known to the natives.

They are situated between the latitude of 16° 10’ and 16° 55’ S. and between the longitude of 150° 57’ and 152° W. from the meridian of Greenwich. Ulietea and Otaha lie within about two miles of each other, and are both inclosed within one reef of coral rocks, so that there is no passage for shipping between them. This reef forms several excellent harbours; the entrances into them, indeed, are but narrow, yet when a ship is once in, nothing can hurt her. The harbours on the east side have been described already; and on the west side of Ulietea, which is the largest of the two, there are three. The northermost, in which we lay, is called OHAMANENO: the channel leading into it is about a quarter of a mile wide, and lies between two low sandy islands, which are the northermost on this side; between, or just within the two islands, there is good anchorage in twenty-eight fathom, soft ground. This harbour, though small, is preferable to the others, because it is situated in the most fertile part of the island, and where fresh water is easily to be got. The other two harbours lie to the southward of this, and not far from the south end of the island: in both of them there is good anchorage, with ten, twelve, and fourteen fathom. They are easily known by three small woody islands at their entrance. The southermost of these two harbours lies within, and to the southward of the southermost of these islands, and the other, lies between the two northermost. I was told that there were more harbours at the south end of this island, but I did not examine whether the report was true.

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© Derived from Vols. II-III of the London 1773 edition: National Library of Australia call no. FERG 7243, pages 269 - 271, 2004
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