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from the focus of an immense volcano, or CESSION OF THE DISTRICT OF MATAVAI,
volcanoes, originating, probably, at the IN THE ISLAND OF OTAHEITE, TO CAP bottom of the sea, and forming, by their ATAIN WILSON, FOR THE MISSIONARIES,
action through successive ages, the whole IN THE YEAR, 1797.
group of islands; in which, nothing like 499 (With a Plate.)
primitive or secondary rock has yet been THE island of Otaheite is said to have been found. In Tahiti, and other islands of the first seen by Quiros, so early as 1606, but southern cluster, there are basalts, whinof this fact the testimonies are very dubi- stone dykes, and homogeneous earthy ous, and even admitting the tradition to lava, retaining all the convolutions which be correct, it is certain that for upwards of cooling lava is known to assume; there are a century and a half from that time, it re- also several kinds of hornstone, limestone, mained unknown to the nations of Europe. silex, breccia, and other substances, which In 1767, Captain Wallis, an English cir- have never, under the action of fire, altered cumnavigator, landed on its shores, and of their original form. Some are found in his interview with the natives, their cus- detached fragments, others in large masses. toms, and peculiarities, together with his The wild and broken manner, however, in observations on the island at large, an ac- which the rocks now appear, warrants the count was published in Hawkesworth's inference, that since their formation, which voyages. In 1768, it was visited by was probably of equal antiquity with the Bougainville, and in 1769, 1773, and bed of the ocean, they have been thrown 1774, by Captain Cook. In 1788 and up by some volcanic explosion, the dis1789, Captain Bligh, in the Bounty, lay ruptions of an earthquake, or other violent at anchor about six months on its shores. convulsions of the earth; and have, from Captain Vancouver touched here in 1792, this circumstance, assumed their bold, irreCaptain New, of the Dædalus, in 1793, gular, and romantic forms. and Captain Robert Wilson in the ship On the north-eastern side of this island Duff in 1797.
is an extensive inlet, furnishing excellent By nearly all of the above navigators, anchorage, generally known by the name some accounts have been published re- Matavai Bay, which Mr. Ellis, in his Polyspecting this interesting portion of the nesian Researches, thus describes. human family, but it has been reserved for « On the morning of the 16th of Febthe Missionaries of more modern days to ruary 1817, as the light of the day broke furnish amplified details of all that is im- upon us, we discovered that, during the portant in the history and ancient man- 1 preceding night, we had drifted to a conners of these uncultivated children of na- siderable distance from the island. The ture; and from their accounts we shall canoes of the natives, however, soon surdraw our information respecting the scene rounded our vessel ; numbers of the peoexhibited in the plate, and an explanation ple were admitted on board ; and we had of the various figures which appear. the long-desired satisfaction of an inter
Otaheite, or, as it is now generally called, course with them, through the medium of Tahiti, is about thirty leagues in circum- an interpreter.
m ference, and contains a population of Mid-day was, however, past, before about 10,000 souls. Most of its land is we entered Matavai Bay. As we sailed remarkably fertile, but there is no reason to into the harbour, we passed near the coral suppose that either this or any other island | reef on which Captain Wallis struck on in the group, is altogether volcanic in its the 19th of June, 1767, when he first enorigin, as Hawaii, and the whole of the tered the bay. His ship remained staSandwich islands, decidedly are. nos diwtionary nearly an hour; and, in conse
The entire mass of matter composing the quence of this circumstance, the reef has latter, has evidently been in a state of fu- received the name of the Dolphin rock. sion, and in that state has been ejected As we passed by it, we felt grateful that 129.--VOL. XI.
Cession of Matavai, in Otaheite, to Captain Wilson.
the winds were fair and the weather calm, I '“Decisive and extensive as that change and that we had reached our anchorage in has since become, it was long before any safety. Ma-ta-vai, or Port Royal, as it salutary effects appeared as the result of was called by Captain Wallis, is situated their endeavours. And, although the scene in latitude 17° 36' S. and longitude 1490 | before me was now one of loveliness and 35 W. It is rather an open bay, and quietude, cheerful, yet placid as the smooth although screened from the prevailing trade waters of the bay, that scarcely rippled by winds, is exposed to the southern and the vessel's side, it has often worn a very westerly gales, and also to a considerable different aspect. Here the first Missionswell from the sea.
aries frequently heard the song accom"The long flat neck of land which panying the licentious areois dance, the forms its northern boundary, was the spot deafening noise of the worship, and saw. on which Captain Cook erected his tents, the human victim carried by for sacriand fixed his instruments for observing the fice: here, too, they often heard the starttransit of Venus ; on which account, it has ling cry of war, and saw their frightened ever since been called Point Venus. Ex- neighbours fly before the murderous spear cepting those parts enclosed as gardens or and plundering hand of lawless powera plantations, the land near the shore is The invaders' torch reduced the native hut covered with long grass, or a species of to ashes, while the lurid flame seared the convolvulus, called by the natives pohue; green foliage of the trees, and clouds of numerous clumps of trees, and waving smoke, rising up among their groves, dark. cocoa-ruts, add much to the beauty of its ened for a time surrounding objects. On appearance. A fine stream, rising in the such occasions, and they were not infreinterior mountains, winds through the quent, the contrast between the country, sinuosities of the head of the valley, and, and the inhabitants, must have been most fertilizing the district of Matavai, flows affecting, appearing as if the demons of through the centre of this long neck of land, darkness had lighted up infernal fires, even into the sea.
in the bowers of paradise. « Such, without much alteration, in all “ Within sight of the spot where our probability, was the appearance of this vessel lay, four of the Missionaries were beautiful bay, when discovered by Captain stripped and maltreated by the natives, two Wallis, in 1767 ; and two years after, when of them nearly assassinated, from the anger first visited by Captain Cook; or when of the king, and one of them was murCaptain Bligh, in the Bounty, spent six dered. Here the first Missionary dwelling months at anchor here in 1788 and 1789; was erected, the first témple for the worwhen Captain Vancouver arrived in 1792; ship of Jehovah reared, and the first MisCaptain New, of the Dædalus, in 1793; sionary grave opened ; and here, after and Captain Wilson, in the Duff, who an having been obliged to convert their house chored in the same bay on the 6th of into a garrison, and watch night and day March, 1797.
in constant expectation of attack, the Mis, “It was on the northern shores of this sionaries were obliged, almost in hopeless bay, that eighteen of the Missionaries, who | despair, to abandon a field, on which they left England in the Duff, first landed, up- had bestowed the toil and culture of twelve wards of thirty years ago. They were anxious and eventful years. - -the messengers
“On the 7th of March, 1797, the first Misof peace, and light, and life, whose eye unsealed sionaries from the Duff went on shore, and Saw up the path of immortality, Far inio bliss. Saw men, immortal men,
were met on the beach by the late Pomare Wide wandering from the way, eclipsed in night, and his queen, then called Otoo and Dark, moonless, moral night, living like beasts, Like beasts descending to the grave, untanght
Tetua ; by them they were kindly welof life to come, unsanctified, unsaved."
comed, as well as by Paitia, an aged chief “To reclaim the inhabitants from error of the district. They were conducted to a and superstition, to impart to them the large, oval-shaped native house, which had truths of revelation, to improve their pre been but recently finished for Captain sent condition, and direct them to future Bligh, whom they expected to return, blessedness, were the ends at which they Their dwelling was pleasantly situated on aimed ; and here they commenced those the western side of the river, near the labours which some of them have con extremity of Point Venus. The islanders tinued to the present time; and which, were delighted to behold foreigners coming under the blessing of God, have been pro- to take up their permanent residence among ductive of the moral change that has since them; as those they had heretofore seen, taken place among the natives of this and with the exception of a Spaniard, had been the adjacent islands.
transient visitors. The Spaniard had saved
773 Cession of Matavai, in Otaheite, to Captain Wilson. 774
Scrum...........si his life by escaping from Langara's ship, homage to his son, and behind him is Hapai, while it was lying at anchor in Tairabu, in the king's grandfather. Haamanemane, the March, 1773, at which time three of his high-priest, who is old and nearly blind, shipmates were executed. The benefit the appears in a crouching position, addressing natives had derived from this individual, Captain Wilson through the interpretation and from the mutineers of the Bounty, of Peter the Swede, and surrendering the prior to their apprehension by the people district. On his right hand, in a recum. of the Pandora, and the residence of seve bent posture, is the young wife of Pomare ral of the crew of the Matilda, which had the elder: Idia, though still sustaining the been wrecked on a reef not far distant, highest authority, being now no longer his led them to desire the residence of fo favourite. Haamanemane was also the reigners.
taio, or friend, of Captain Wilson; and “The inhabitants of Tahiti having never rendered him considerable service, in proseen any European females or children, curing supplies, facilitating the settlement were consequently filled with amazement of the Mission, and accomplishing other and delight, when the wives and children objects of his visit. Just behind the highof the Missionaries landed. Several times priest, and the young queen, is a rope during the first days of their residence on drawn round the place of audience, to keep shore, large parties arrived from different off the people, and encircle the principal places in front of the house, requesting personages. Without the rope stands that the white women and children would Mawrea, with other chiefs, and also a sister come to the door and shew themselves. of Pomare, who, in observance of certain The chiefs and people were not satisfied rules of etiquette, were not permitted to with giving them the large and commo enter the sacred enclosure. dious Fare Beritani (British House,) as “ Presentations of this kind were not they called the one they had built for uncommon among the islanders, as a comBligh, but readily and cheerfully ceded to pliment, or matter of courtesy, to a visitor; Captain Wilson and the Missionaries, in an they were regulated by the rank and means official and formal manner, the whole dis- of the donors, or the dignity of the guests. trict of Matavai, in which their habitation Houses, plantations, districts, and even was situated. The late Pomare and his whole islands, were sometimes presented; queen, with other branches of the royal still, those who thus received them, never family, and the most influential persons in thought of appropriating them to their own the nation, were present, and Haamane use, and excluding their original propriemane, an aged chief of Raiatea, and chief tors, any more than a visitor in England, priest of Tahiti, was the principal agent who should be told by his host to make for the natives on the occasion.
himself perfectly at home, and to do as "The accompanying Plate, representing he would if he were in his own house, this singular transaction, is taken from an would, from this declaration, think of original painting in the possession of Mrs. altering the apartments of the house, or Wilson, relict of the late Captain Wilson. removing from it any part of the furniIt exhibits, 'not only the rich luxuriance of ture. It is, however, probable, that such the scenery, but the complexion, expres- was their estimate of the advantages that sion, dress, and tatauing of the natives, would result from the residence of the with remarkable fidelity and spirit. The Mission families among them, that, in two figures on men's shoulders are the late order to afford every facility for the acking and queen. Near the queen on the complishment of an object so desirable, right stands Peter the Swede, their inter- and hold out every inducement to conpreter, and behind him stands Idia, the fidence for the Missionaries, as to their mother of the king. The person seated on future support, they were sincere in thus the ground at the right hand in the plate, ceding the district. They might wish them is Paitia, the chief of the district; behind to reside in it, exercise the office of chiefs. him stand Mr. and Mrs. Henry, Mr. Jef | over the whole, cultivate as much of it, as ferson, and others. The principal person they desired, and receive tribute from on this side is Captain Wilson, holding his those who might occupy the remaining hat in his left hand; between him and his parts; but, by no means, perpetually to nephew Captain W. Wilson, stands a child alienate it from the king, or chief, to whom of Mr. Hassel; Mrs. Hassel with an infant, it originally belonged. This they knew that has attracted the eye of the queen, is could not be done without their permisbefore them. On the left, next to the sion, and that permission they could at any king, stands his father, Pomare the elder, 1 time withhold. . the upper part of his body uncovered in “ In 1801, when the Royal Admiral
Cession of Matavai, in Otaheitė, to Captain Wilson.
arrived, Pomare was asked, when the Mis | return to England, was taken on board; sionaries were introduced to him, if they and the Duff finally sailed from Matavai were still to consider the district theirs ; on the 4th of August, 1797. The Misand though he replied in the affirmative, sionaries returning from the ship, as well and even asked if they wished the inha- as those on shore, watched her course as bitants to remove, it afterwards appeared she slowly receded from their view, under that the natives considered them only as no ordinary sensations. They now felt tenants at will. All they desired was, the that they were cut off from all but Divine permanent occupation of the ground on guidance, protection, and support, and which their dwellings and gardens were had parted with those by whose counsels situated; yet, in writing to the Society, in and presence they had been assisted in 1804, they remark, in reference to the dis- entering upon their labours, but whom on trict, The inhabitants do not consider the earth they did not expect to meet again. district, nor any part of it, as belonging to Captain Wilson coasted along the south us, except the sandy spot we occupy with and western shores of Huahine, and then our dwellings, and gardens; and even as sailed to Tongatabu; where, after spendto that, there are persons who claim the ing twenty days with the Missionaries, ground as theirs.' :
who appeared comfortably settled, he IT. Whatever advantages the kings or sailed for Canton, where he received a chiefs might expect to derive from this cargo, with which he returned to England, settlement on the island, it must not be and arrived safely in the Thames; having supposed that any desire to receive moral completed his perilous voyage, under ciror religious instructions formed a part. | cumstances adapted to afford the highest This was evident, from a speech once satisfaction, and to excite the sincerest made by Haamanemane, who said that gratitude from all who were interested in they gave the people plenty of the parau the success of the important enterprise." (word) talk and prayer, but very few “The departure of the Duff did not knives, axes, sissors, or cloth. These, 1 occasion any diminution in the attention however, were soon afterwards amply sup- of the natives to the Missionaries in Tahiti. plied. A desire to possess such property, Pomare, Otu, Haamanemane, Paitia, and and to receive the assistance of the Euro- other chiefs, continued to manifest the truest peans in the exercise of the mechanic arts, friendship, and liberally supplied them or in their wars, was probably the motive with such articles as the island afforded. by which the natives were most strongly The Missionaries, as soon as they had influenced.
made the habitation furnished by the peo"Captain Wilson was, however, happy | ple for their accommodation in any degree to find the king, chiefs, and people so will comfortable, commenced with energy their ing to receive the Missionaries, and so important work. friendly towards them; and the latter being ic Their acquaintance with the most usenow settled comfortably in their new sphere ful of the mechanic arts, not only delighted of labour, the Duff sailed for the Friendly the natives, but raised the Missionaries in Islands on the 26th of March,
their estimation, and led them to desire “ Having landed ten Missionaries at their friendship. This was strikingly Tongatabu, in the Friendly Islands, Cap- evinced on several occasions, when they tain Wilson visited and surveyed several of beheld them use their carpenters' tools, the Marquesan Islands, and left Mr. Crook cut with a saw a number of boards out of a Missionary there ; he then returned to a tree, which they had never thought it Tahiti, and on the 6th of July, the Duff possible to split into more than two, and again anchored in Matavai Bay. The make with these, chests, and articles of health of the Missionaries had not been furniture. When they beheld a boat built, affected by the climate. The conduct of upwards of twenty feet long, and six tons the natives had been friendly and respecto | burden, they were pleased and surprised; ful; and supplies in abundance had been but when the blacksmith's shop was erectfurnished during his absence. While the ed, and the forge and anvil were first ship remained at Tahiti, Mr. W. Wilson employed on their shores, they were filled made the tour of the island ; the iron, with astonishment. They had long been tools, and other supplies for the Mission, acquainted with the properties and uses were landed; the Missionaries, and their of iron, having procured some from the friends on board, having spent a month natives of a neighbouring island, where a in agreeable intercourse, now affectionately Dutch ship, belonging to Roggewein's bade each other farewell. ' Dr. Gilham squadron, had been wrecked many years having intimated to Captain W, his wish to before they were visited by Captain Wallis.
When the heated iron was hammered on distant islanders, and through which they the anvil, and the sparks flew among them, have been induced, to abandon idolatry they fancied it was spitting at them, and and savage life, for the solid advantages of were frightened, as they also were with the Christianity, and the refined blessings of hissing occasioned, by immersing it in civilization. water; yet they were delighted to see the facility with which a bar of iron was thus converted into hatchets, adzes, fish-spears,
ESSAY ON THE NATURE AND FORCE OF and fish-hooks, &c. Pomare, entering one
EVIDENCE. day when the blacksmith was employed, | As the reception of religious truth, which after gazing a few minutes at the work, | ought always to be the governing principle was so transported at what he saw, that he of human actions, must in a great measure caught up the smith in his arms, and, un-' depend on the rational evidence by which mindful of the dirt and perspiration inse- it is supported, I propose in the present perable from his occupation, most cordially essay to inquire into the nature and force embraced him, and saluted him, according of evidence, and by what means it operates to the custom of his country, by touching on the mind, to convince it of the disnoses."
tinction between truth and error. . i “ Iron tools they considered the most | Evidence may be defined to be a com
valuable articles they could possess; and bination of self-evident or well-authentia circumstance that occurred during the cated facts, regularly arranged and digested second visit of the Duff, will shew most to confirm and support each other. From strikingly the comparative value they placed these, when properly presented before it, upon gold and iron. The ship's cook had | the mind, by the power of reflection, prolost his axe, and Captain Wilson gave him ceeds to reason on their consistency, conten guineas to try to purchase one, sup nexion, and authority, and from them, by -posing that the intercourse the natives had the further exercise of judgment, forms a already had with Europeans, would enable series of sentiments, opinions, and resoluthem to form some estimate of the value tions, to regulate the future conduct. of a guinea, and the number of articles | Such is the definition of evidence genethey could procure with it, from any other rally, and that of religion in particular; ship that might visit the island; but, and I shall now proceed to consider it although the cook kept the guineas more under the two general heads of Natural than a week, he could meet with no indi Evidence and Supernatural or Revealed vidual among the natives who would part Evidence. with an axe, or even a hatchet, in exchange 1, Natural Evidence-In describing for them.
the evidences which nature bears to the “ While some of the Missionaries were existence of a God, and his moral governemployed in the , exercise of those arts ment, I shall be guided by the general which were adapted to make the most system of the universe, on which alone powerful impression upon the minds of that existence and providence can be esthe natives, others were equally diligent in tablished, and which it is the province of exploring the adjacent country, planting reason to observe and improve. the seeds they had brought with them In the beautiful order, harmony and from Europe and Brazil, and studiously contrivance visible in the structure of the endeavouring to gain an acquaintance with universe, we behold the wisdom, power, the native language, which they justly con- and love of an infinitely great and benevo. sidered essential to the accomplishment of lent Being ; and this sentiment or convictheir objects.”
tion is strengthened and confirmed by the • Having thus stated some of the leading contemplation of ourselves. In pursuing events more immediately connected with this contemplation, and reflecting on the the Plate, the reader is referred for a de- symmetry of our bodies, our erect and
tailed account of the successes, disasters, commanding stature, but, above all, the s and numerous vicissitudes, associated with powers and capacities of our mental facul
this early mission, to a work recently pub- ties, we find a conscious superiority over lished by the Rev. William Ellis, entitled, the brute creation. There is a natural
Polynesian Researches.” In this work propensity in the human mind, even in he has traced with much ability, and the most uncultivated state, as among igno, marked with commendable discrimination, | rant barbarians, to seek for some cause the changes which, under the co-operation for all the wonders that surround it, of various causes, have of late years taken and to this cause there is a disposition place in the character and conduct of these to pay some kind of worship, however im