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Adams, Memoirs of Arii TaimaiIndigenous Histories
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Chapter XVII


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Chapter XVII (continued)

these times is written in a number of heavy books which any one can read, and which have lost the interest they had fifty years ago, when France and England were quarrelling over poor little Tahiti. I am not going to tell the tale over again. I am not even going to tell what Tati did, in the forty years during which he was struggling to prevent the islands from falling back into chronic wars and disturbances. I am concerned only with what is not printed, and what has a connection with our family.

Uata was an interesting man. He was a friend of the second Pomare, and was made feeding-father or guardian of the boy, the third Pomare, who was born in 1820. Pomare II died December 7, 1821, leaving the daughter Aimata, a girl not yet nine years old, and the boy, Pomare III, a child in arms. Aimata was never regarded with favor by Pomare, her father, who was very frank in saying that she was not his child; so the boy was made king. Moerenhout says that Pomare, on his death-bed, wished Tati to take the government, but that the missionaries and other chiefs were afraid to trust Tati, and preferred to take the charge of the boy on themselves. This is likely enough, although I doubt whether Tati asked such a responsibility, and those that knew Tati best would suspect that he was greatly relieved at escaping it.

So Uata became in effect the head of the Pomare family and the chief adviser in all difficult questions. The missionaries in due time went through the formal ceremony of crowning the infant, April 22,1824, at Papaoa, and then took him to their school, the South Sea Academy which was established in March, 1824, in the island of Moorea at Papetoai. There he was taught to write, and educated in English which became his language, until he was seven years old, when he fell ill, and was taken over to his mother at Pare, where he died, Jan. 11, 1827. In his last illness he called constantly for water, using the English word, for he had never learned the native language. His feeding-father, who did not understand English, brought him every sort


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© Derived from the revised Paris edition of 1901 page 176, 2004
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