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Endeavour journal, 20 July 1769 (Series 03.328)

Notes: Page header reads: 'Huahine'; 'Ulhietea'
Author: Banks, Joseph, Sir, 1743-1820
Date: 20 July 1769
Series title: Series 03: The Endeavour journal of Joseph Banks, 25 August 1768 - 12 July 1771
Frame numbers:
Transcript: 20. At noon today come to an anchor at Ulhietea in a bay Calld by the natives Oapoa, the entrance of which is very near a small Islet Calld Owhattera. Some Indians soon came on board expressing signs of fear, they were two Canoes each of which brought a woman, I suppose as a mark of confidence, and a pig as a present. To each of these ladies was given a spike nail and some beads with which they seemd much pleasd. Tupia who has always expressd much fear of the men of Bola Bola says that they have conquerd this Island and will tomorrow come down and fight with us, we therefore lose no time in going ashore as we are to have today to ourselves. On landing Tupia repeated the ceremony of praying as at Huahine after which an English Jack was set up on shore and Captn Cooke took possession of this and the other three Islands in sight viz. Huahine Otahah and Bola Bola for the use of his Britannick majesty. After this we walk together to a great Marai calld Tapodeboatea whatever that may signifie; it is different from those of Otahite being no more than walls about 8 feet high of Coral Stones (some of an immense size) filld up with smaller ones, the whole ornamented with many planks set upon their ends and carvd their whole lengh. In the neighbourhood of this we found the altar or ewhatta upon which lay the last sacrafice, a hog of about 80 pounds weight which had been put up there whole and very nicely roasted. Here were also 4 or 5 Ewharre no Eatua or god houses which were made to be carried on poles. One of these I examind by putting my hand into it: within was a parsel about 5 feet long and one thick wrappd up in matts, these I tore with my fingers till I came to a covering of mat made of platted Cocoa nut fibres which it was impossible to get through so I was obligd to desist, especialy as what I had already done gave much offence to our new freinds. From hence we went to an adjoining long house where among several things such as rolls of cloth &c . was standing a model of a Canoe about 3 feet long upon which were tied 8 under jaw bones of men. Tupia told us that it was the custom of these Islanders to cut off the Jaw bones of those who they had killd in war; these were he said the jaw bones of Ulhietea people but how they came here or why tied thus to a canoe we could not understand, we were therefore contented to conjecture that they were plac'd there as a trophy won back from the men of Bola Bola their mortal enemies. Night now came on apace but Dr Solander and myself walkd along shore a little way and saw an Ewharre no Eatua , the under part of which was lind with a row of Jaw bones which we were also told were those of Ulhietea men. We saw also Cocoa nut trees the stemms of which were hung round with nutts so that no part of them could be seen, these we were told were put there that they might dry a little and be prepard for making poe; we saw also a tree of Ficus prolixa in great perfection, the trunck or rather congeries of roots of which was 42 paces in circumference.