Narrative and Successful Result of a Voyage in the South Seas

Cambridge University Press, 4. jul. 2017 - 446 sider
Entrepreneurial, spirited and ambitious, Peter Dillon (1788-1847) spent much of his life as a trader and adventurer in the Pacific region and learnt several Pacific languages. In 1826-7, through contacts in the Santa Cruz Islands, Dillon located the wrecks of La Perouse's Pacific expedition, unaccounted for since 1788. This later earned him a knighthood and annuity from the French government. (La Perouse's despatches and La Billardière's account of an earlier search for the wrecks are also reissued) In this two-volume 1829 publication, translated into French and Dutch the following year, Dillon tells the story of his sensational discovery. After an ethnographical account of Tonga, largely borrowed from William Mariner's 1818 description (also reissued), Volume 2 gives fascinating details of Dillon's enquiries (through multiple interpreters) into La Perouse's fate, and how he negotiated to acquire 'relics' including a ship's bell, parts of weapons and machinery, and even pieces of china.

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