« ForrigeFortsæt »
his hair very long, and tied up in a knot, with a turban round the head, and an apron of the leaves of the chi tree round his waist: this disguise would have warranted the conduct of the centinel, but, as soon as Mr. Mariner spoke English, and told him he was an Englishman, be allowed him to come on deck, where he addressed the captain, who cordially shook hands with him. The latter had heard from the captain of a schooner the whole unfortunate affair of the Port au Prince; for the schooner brought away two men from one of these islands during the time that Mr. Mariner was in another quarter, upon some business for Finow.
The captain presented bim with a pair of trowsers and a shirt; the latter, it must be said, was neither very new por very clean ; in consequence, he took the pains to wash it, and hang it up in the rigging to dry: in the morning, however, it had disappeared, at the ho. nest instigation of somebody; hence, bis whole stock of apparel consisted of the said pair of trowsers; nor did he get better provided till be arrived in China, about seren werks after. wards. But to return to the subject; the brig proved to be the Farourite, Captain Fisk, from Port Jackson, about 130 tons burtben, bad on
board about ninety tons of mother of pearl shells, procured from the Society Islands: she intended to make up her voyage with sandal wood from the Fiji islands, and thence to proceed to China.
Mr. Mariner requested the captain to give the men in the canoe, which brought him, some beads, as a reward for their trouble, &c., and also an axe as a present for Finow. The captain liberally complied; and the canoe left the ship, with a message from Mr. Mariner to the king, requesting him to come on board. As to the wounded man, he was, in all probability, dead; at least the other two seemed to think so by his not stirring, and so took no trouble about him. By this time there were about two hundred small canoes near the ves. sel, and several large ones, so that the whole people of Vavaoo seemed to be assembled to view the brig, for the whole beach was also crowded. As the vessel was very short of provisions, a very brisk traffic was carried on with the natives by the captain and mate, for yams, hogs, &c. : hence orders were given to the crew not to purchase any trinkets, &c., till they had procured plenty of provisions. About the middle of the day Finow came along side with his sister, and several of her female at
tendants, bringing off, as a present for Mr. Mariner, five large hogs, and forty large yams, each weighing not less than thirty pounds, and some of the largest sixty or seventy pounds: these things Mr. Mariner begged leave to transfer* to the captain, and presented them accordingly. Notwithstanding repeated messages from the chiefs on shore to Finow, requesting him to return, he resolved to sleep on board that night, if the captain would allow him, which he readily did. The women, however, intimated their wish to return, not liking tbe thought of trusting their persons among a number of strange men. Mr. Mariner found it very difficult to remove their scruples, by assuring them that they should not be molested. At length, however, they consented to remain, on his promise to take care of them, and to roll them all up in a sail, in which state they laid the whole night in the steerage ; and, as they said, slept comfortably. As to Finow, he was very well contented with sleeping on a sail on the cabin deck. As the weather was remarkably fine, the brig did not come to an anchor, but stood off and on during the whole of the night. At day-light canoes came along
• It is a very common thing among the natives to transfer a present.
side in great numbers; but from prudent motives, dictated by former disasters, no more than three of the natives were allowed to come on board at a time, six centinels being kept constantly on deck for that purpose. In the canoes were several chiefs, who came to request Finow to return on shore, as the people were greatly alarmed lest he should form a determination of going to Papalangi (land of white people). They brought off some cava for him, but which he declined drinking, saying that he had tasted some on board (wine) which was far preferable: indeed, he considered it so much superior, that the thoughts of cava quite disgusted him. He made a hearty dinner at the captain's table-ate plenty of roast pork, with which he admired very much the flavour of the sage and onions : the fowls he cared very little about, but partook of some made dishes. The ladies also ate very heartily; but Finow handled a knife and fork, though for the first time in his life, with very great dexterity; sometimes, indeed, his majesty forgot himself a little, and laid hold of the meat with his fingers ; but, instantly recollecting that he was doing wrong, he would put it down again, exclaiming, wbe! gooa te gnalo! Eh! I forget myself! The natural politeness which he evinced on every occasion charmed the captain and the officers so much, that they could not help acknowledging that it far surpassed any other instance of good manners they had witnessed among the inhabitants of the South Sea islands; and not only in behaviour, but in intelligence, he seemed to excel : his inquiries about the use and application of what he saw were frequent, and indeed troublesome; but then his deportment was so affable, and his manner so truly polite, that nobody could be offended with him. He requested permission to lie down in the captain's bed, that he might be able to say what none of the people of Vavaoo could boast of, that he had been in a Papalangi bed. Permission being readily granted, he lay down, and was deligbted with his situation; and said, that being now in an English bed, he could fancy himself in England. Some time after, being left in the cabin by himself, though watched unknown to him, he did not offer to take, or even touch, a single bead, or any thing else, excepting the captain's hat; but which, not choosing to put on without asking leave, he went on deck on purpose to request Mr. Mariner to obtain permission of