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James Morrison's Account of TahitiIndigenous Histories
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Dress &c.


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Dress &c.

The Dress of Both Sexes is Nearly the same except that the Weomens lower garments are somthing longer then the Mens & being put on in a kind of Neat Negligence, together with the Cleaness of their Clothes, sets them off to great advantage and as they Wash regularly three times a day, they are free from any disagreeable smell, and a stranger suffers nothing but Heat in the Midst of a thousand of them. Their Clothing when put on has some resemblance of that discribed to be the Dress of the Natives of Peru & Chili from whence tis possible that it Might Originaley have Come, as the present Natives of these Islands are known to drive about those seas to the Distance of some hundreds of Leagues and might in all probability have been at first driven from the Continent to these Islands, first to these Near the Continent and afterwards to the more leeward ones.

It Consists of Square Pieces, and the Mens dress is first a long narrow piece Calld Marro which passes between the thighs and round the Waist, one end hanging down near the Knees before and the other being tuckd in behind hangs down in the same manner, serving for Breeches, and is Made either of Cloth or Matting for Dry & Wet Weather — the Oblong Piece of two Yards long and One to half a one Wide, in the Center of which is a Slit to let the Head pass through & hangs down before and behind; this is also of Cloth or Matting and is Calld Teeboota — A square piece doubled so as to pass once & a half round the Middle over the ends of the Teeboota, which is tuckd in on one Hip, and depends as low as the knees, but when worn by Weomen, to the Midleg or Ancle; this is Calld Parew and round the waist they wear a Sash or Girdle, made of Braided hair & wrought into Network calld Tamow — all these are Common to both Sexes, except the Marro which the Weomen never wear but when they are fishing or at wrestling when they are in danger of having their Parew hauld off


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© Derived from the 1935 Print Edition edited by Owen Rutter, page 219, 2004
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