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for this duty were William Ellis, Asa Thurston, Charles S. Stewart, Artemas Bishop, and Joseph Goodrich. The little volume before us is the result of their observations during the tour, drawn up by Mr Ellis from his own minutes, and such as were kept by his companions. The journal is prefaced by a short, summary Report of the Deputation, and in the Appendix are contained several particulars illustrative of the journal, collected and arranged by the assistant secretary of the Board of Foreign Missions. In addition to the points bearing immediately on the main object of the travellers, they have succeeded in gathering many facts curious in themselves, and throwing light on the geography and natural history of the island, as well as on the customs, traditions, agriculture, and modes of living of the inhabitants.
The tour was begun at Kairua, a village on the western side of the island, and the residence of Kuakini, the principal chief of Hawaii. They proceeded along the coast to the south, east, and north, till they had encompassed the island, having occupied in their ramblings a little more than two months. They made frequent excursions inland, visited the principal villages, conversed with the people, preached to them on proper occasions, and collected such information, as in the most satisfactory manner to answer the ends of the mission. A guide was furnished them, called Makoa, a personage of a somewhat remarkable appearance and character, to judge from his picture, and the description of him in the book. But he was faithful to his duty, and the travellers were hospitably received and civilly treated wherever they went.
Six days after the departure of the Deputation from Kairua, they came to Kearakékua bay, the scene of the fatal tragedy, which ended the life of the great English navigator. The facts here reported add something to the former stock of knowledge, and comprise everything, probably, which can be gathered from the natives on the subject.
* About sunset Mr Goodrich ascended a neighboring height, and visited the spot where the body of the unfortunate Captain Cook was cut to pieces, and the flesh, separated from the bones, was burnt. It is a small inclosure about fifteen feet square, surrounded by a wall five feet high. Within is a kind of hearth about eighteen inches high, encircled by a row of rude stones. Here the fire was kindled on the above mentioned occasion. The place is still strewed with charcoal.' p. 33.
• Some of us climbed the rocks, and visited the cave where the body of Captain Cook was deposited, on being first taken from the beach.
• There are a number of persons at this and other places in the islands, who were either present themselves at the unhappy dispute, which in this village caused the death of the celebrated Captain Cook, or who, by their connexion with those who were, are intimately acquainted with the particulars of that melancholy event. With many oi them we have frequently conversed, and though their narratives differ in some smaller points, yet they all agree in the main facts published by Captain King, his successor.
• The foreigner, they say, was not to blame ; for, in the first instance, our people stole his boat, and he designed to take our king on board and detain him till it should be returned. Captain Cook and Teraiopu were walking together towards the shore, when our people thronged round the king, and objected to his going any farther. While he was hesitating, a man, running from the other side of the bay, entered the crowd almost breathless, and exclaimed, “ It is war! The foreigners have commenced hostilities, have fired on a canoe from one of their boats, and killed a chief.” This enraged some of our people, and alarmed the chiefs, as they feared he would kill the king. The people armed themselves with stones, clubs, and spears. Kanona entreated her husband not to go.
All the chiefs did the same. The king sat down. The foreigner seemed agitated, and started for his boat. Then one of our men attacked him with a spear, but he turned, and, with his double barrelled gun, shot the man who struck him. Some of our people then threw stones at him, which being seen by his men, they fired on us. Captain Cook turned, and tried to stop his men from firing, but he could not on account of the noise. He was turning again to speak to us, when he was stabbed in his back with a pahoa. A spear was at that same instant driven through his body. He fell into the water and spake no
After he was dead we all wailed. His bones were separated, and the flesh scraped off and burnt; as was the practice in regard to our own chiefs when they died. We thought he was our god Rono, worshipped him as such, and reverenced his bones.
Several of the chiefs frequently express the sorrow they feel whenever they think of him, and the people, generally, speak of these facts with much apparent regret. Yet they free the king from all blame, as nothing was done by his orders.
• It has been supposed, that the circumstance of his bones being separated, and the flesh taken off, was evidence of the most savage and unrelenting barbarity ; but so far from this, it was the highest respect they could show him, as will be seen more fully hereafter.
We may also mention here, the ground on which Captain Cook received the worship of a god. Among the kings, who governed Hawaii, during what may, in its chronology, be called the fabulous age, was Rono, or Crono. On some accounts he became offended with his wife, and slew her. After this, he lamented so much, that he fell into a state of derangement, and in this state travelled through all the islands, boxing with every one he met. He then set off in a canoe for a foreign country. After his departure, he was deified by his countrymen, and annual boxing and wrestling games were instituted in his honor. As soon as Captain Cook arrived, it was supposed and reported, that the god Rono, had returned. Hence, the people prostrated their deities before him, as he walked through the villages. But when, in the attack made upon him, they saw his blood running, and heard his groans, they said, “ No, this is not Rono.” Some, however, even after his death, supposed him to be Rono, and expected he would appear again. After the departure of the vessels, some of his bones, his ribs, and breast bone, as part of Rono, were considered sacred, and deposited in a heiau, or temple, belonging to Rono, on the opposite side of the island, where religious homage was paid to them, and from which they were annually carried in procession to several other heiaus, or borne by the priests round the island to collect the offerings of the people to the god Rono. The bones were preserved in a small basket of wicker work, completely covered over with red feathers. These last, in those days, were the most valuable articles the natives possessed, generally rendered sacred, and considered a necessary appendage to every idol, and almost to every object of religious homage, through the islands of the Pacific. They were supposed to add much to the power and influence of the idol, or relic, to which they were attached.
• The missionaries in the Society Islands had, by means of some Sandwich Islanders, been many years acquainted with the circumstance of some of Captain Cook's bones being preserved in one of their temples, and receiving religious worship, and, ever since the arrival of Mr Ellis, in company with the Deputation, in 1822, every endeavor has been made to learn, whether they were still in existence, and where they were kept. All those, of whom inquiry has been made, have uniformly asserted, that they were formerly kept by some of the friends of Rono, and worshipped, but have never given any satisfactory information, as to where they now are. Whenever we have asked the king, or Kevaheva, the chief priest, or any of the chiefs, they have either told us they were under the care of those, who had themselves told us they knew nothing about them, or that they were now lost.
After the investigation, that has been made, we have no doubt, but that part of Captain Cook’s bones were preserved by the priests, and were considered sacred by the people, probably till the abolition of idolatry in 1819. At that period, most likely they were committed to the secret care of some chief, or deposited by the priests, who had charge of them, in some cave unknown to all besides themselves. The manner in which they were then disposed of, will probably remain a secret, except to the parties immediately concerned. The priests and chiefs always appear unwilling to enter into conversation on the subject, and seem to wish to avoid renewing the recollection of the unhappy circumstance.' pp. 74–77.
The travellers frequently met with the remains of ancient heiaus, or idol temples, some of which appeared in a condition nearly as perfect as when used, and they were all regarded by the natives with a kind of awe, although the sacrifices and worship had ceased. The following description will give an idea of the form of these structures, although some of them are of greater dimensions. This heiau is called Bukohola.
• It stands on an eminence in the southern part of the district, was built by Tamehameha, about thirty years ago, when he was engaged in conquering Hawaii and the rest of the Sandwich Islands. He had subdued Maui, Ranai, and Morokai, and was preparing from the latter to invade Oahu, but in consequence of a rebellion in the south and east parts of Hawaii, was obliged to return thither. When he had overcome those who had rebelled, he finished the heiau, dedicated it to his god of war, and then proceeded to the conquest of Oahu. Its shape is an irregular par allelogram, two hundred and twentyfour feet long and one hundred wide. The walls, though built of loose stones, were solid and compact. On the side next the mountains, they were twenty feet high, and six broad on the top, but nearly double that breadth at the bottom. The walls next the sea were not more than seven or eight feet high, and proportionably wide. The upper terrace within the area was spacious, and much better finished than the lower ones. It was paved with various kinds of flat, smooth stones, brought from a considerable distance. At the south end was a kind of inner court, where the principal idol used to be kept, surrounded by a number of images of inferior deities. In the centre of this inner court was the place where the anu was erected, which was a lofty frame of wicker work, in shape something like an obelisk, within which the priest stood as the organ of communication from the god, whenever the king came to inquire his will in any matter of importance. On the outside, just at the entrance of it, was the
place of the rere, (altar,) on which human and other sacrifices were offered. The remains of one of the pillars that supported it, were pointed out by the natives, and the pavement around was strewed with bones of men and animals, the mouldering relics of those numerous offerings once presented there. About the centre of the terrace was the spot where the king's sacred house stood, in which he resided during the season of strict tabu, and at the north end, the place which the priests' houses occupied, who, with the exception of the king, were the only persons permitted to dwell within the sacred enclosure. Holes were seen on the walls, all around this, as well as the lower terraces, where wooden idols of varied size and form formerly stood, casting their hideous stare in every direction. Tairi, or Kukairimoku, the favorite war god of Tamehameha, was the principal idol. To him the heiau was dedicated, and for his occasional residence it was built. On the day in which he was brought within its precincts, vast offerings of fruit, hogs, and dogs, were presented, and no less than eleven human victims immolated on its altars. And although the huge pile resembles a dismantled fortress, whose frown no longer strikes terror through the surrounding country, yet it is impossible to walk over such a golgotha, or contemplate a spot which must often have resembled a pandemonium, more than any thing on earth, without a strong feeling of horror at the recollection of the bloody and infernal rites frequently practised within its walls. pp. 51–53.
Among the most extraordinary phenomena on the island of Hawaii, is the great crater of Kirauea, situate about twenty miles from the seashore in the interior. It is thus described in the journal.
Immediately before us yawned an immense gulf, in the form of a crescent, upwards of two miles in length, about a mile across, and apparently eight hundred feet deep. The bottom was filled with Java, and the south west and northern parts of it were one vast flood of liquid fire, in a state of terrific ebulition, rolling to and fro its “ fiery surge” and flaming billows. Fiftyone craters, of varied form and size, rose, like so many conical islands, from the surface of the burning lake. Twentytwo constantly emitted columns of grey smoke, or pyramids of brilliant flame, and many of them, at the same time, vomited from their ignited mouths streams of florid lava, which rolled in blazing torrents, down their black indented sides, into the boiling mass below.
• The sides of the gulf before us, were perpendicular, for about four hundred feet ; when there was a wide, horizontal ledge of