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nancing the misdeeds of those we might recommend to mercy.
The new laws had now been nearly three years established in Tahiti and Eimeo. Those of Raiatea, Tahaa, and Borabora had also been for more than twelve months in operation among the inhabitants of these islands. The chiefs of Huahine had virtually made the latter the basis of their administration of justice, but no code had yet been officially promulgated.
They had already applied to us for assistance in preparing the laws for the islands under their dominion. This we had cheerfully rendered to the best of our ability, at the same time recommending them still to defer their public enactments until they had deliberately observed the effect of those already in force among the inhabitants of the adjacent islands. It was also proper to obtain the sanction of the queen's sister, then residing at Tahiti, who is nominally the sovereign of Huahine, the government of the island having been formerly presented to her by Mahine, the resident and hereditary chieftain. This grant, which transpired several years before any of the parties embraced Christianity, has often occasioned inconvenience. The internal government of the island has always been maintained by the resident chiefs, but in all matters materially affecting the people, or their relation to the governments of other islands, it has been considered necessary, as a matter of etiquette, or courtesy at least, to consult Teriitaria; and hence it was thought desirable to submit the laws to her inspection, and receive her sanction. Though affecting only the resident chiefs and people, and maintained entirely by the authority of the former, they were to be promul
gated in her name, as well as that of Mahine, and the other chiefs of the island. The introduction of new laws being a matter of importance to the nation, it was deemed suitable that a deputation from the chiefs should proceed to Tahiti, for the purpose of receiving the queen's approval. It was also desirable that Mr. Barff, or myself, should accompany this embassage, that we might make inquiries of Mr. Nott, and others, relative to the adaptation of the laws in force there, to the circumstances of the people, and might alter, if necessary, those prepared for Huahine.
Pomare's proposed restrictions on barter rejected by the chiefs of the Leeward Islands-Voyage to Eimeo-Departure for Tahiti-Danger during the night—Arrival at Burder's Point-State of the settlement-PapeeteMount Hope-Interview with the king-The laws revised Approved by the queen-Arrival of the Hope from England-Influence of letters, &c.-Return to EimeoEmbarkation for the Leeward Islands-A night at seaAppearance of the heavens-Astronomy of the natives— Names of the stars-The Twins-Tradition of their origin -Arrival in Huahine.
EARLY in 1821, the brig which had been purchased in New South Wales for Pomare, arrived in Tahiti. Soon after this, the king sent a messenger to the Leeward Islands, with a bundle of niaus, or emblems of royal authority, and a proposal to the chiefs, that they should become joint proprietors, and furnish a required quantity of native produce, viz. pigs, arrow-root, and cocoa-nut oil, towards payment for the vessel. The herald left his message and bundle of niaus at Huahine, in the name of Teriitaria, and passed on to Raiatea. in a day or two afterwards we learned that instructions had been sent down to the chiefs, not to dispose of any of the abovementioned articles, nor to allow the people to barter them to any ship, or even to the Mission
aries, but to reserve them for the vessel. We represented to the chiefs the injustice of not allowing every man, provided he paid their just demands, to dispose of the fruits of his own industry; and they stated their intention that it should be so at Huahine, whatever restrictions might be imposed upon the people of Tahiti. The queen's sister, the nominal ruler of the island, residing at Tahiti, was influenced, they observed, by the advice and measures of Pomare, and often perplexed them by her directions.
On the fourteenth of April, 1821, Pomare's messenger returned from Raiatea. Tamatoa, the king of that island, and the chiefs of those adjacent, had refused to receive the niaus, or to join Pomare in his commercial speculations. They had at the same time agreed to unite, and procure a vessel for themselves, in which to trade from the islands to the colony of New South Wales, and had sent up a special messenger, with a letter to the chiefs of Huahine, requesting them to unite in the enterprise. A public meeting was convened, in which the propositions from Pomare on the one hand, and of Tamatoa on the other, were freely discussed. The result was, that although all were more disposed to join the Raiatean than the Tahitian chiefs, they declined both for the present, and despatched the respective messengers to their superiors, with declarations to that effect.
The wind, which had set in from the westward on the fourteenth, continued during the whole of the fifteenth, and, as it seemed tolerably steady, it was proposed that our boat should be prepared for the voyage to Tahiti. It was also thought best that I should accompany Auna and Matapuupuu on their embassy to the queen's sister. During
the evening I waited on the chiefs, and took my leave; the native chieftains did the same; and their final instructions were, to induce, if possible, Teriitaria to come and reside at Huahine; but that, if she preferred remaining at Tahiti, she should give up all interference with the government of the island, and delegate it to them, independently of all foreign control.
The wind continuing to blow from the westward through the night, early on the morning of the sixteenth we prepared for embarkation. The boat was rather rude in appearance, being one I had from necessity built, with the assistance of the natives, while residing in the island of Raiatea, in the early part of 1820. It was about thirty-six feet in length, and capable of carrying forty persons. The breeze increased in strength as the morning began to dawn, and about day-break we sailed from Fare harbour. Auna, Matatore, and Matapuupuu were my companions, and our boat was manned by about ten strong and active natives. As we were bounding over the waves of the harbour, and entering upon the wide-spread bosom of the Pacific, we lost the sprit of one of our mattingsails in the sea, and could only carry one sail. This circumstance, although it prevented our proceeding so rapidly as we should otherwise have done, contributed perhaps to our safety, for the wind was high and the sea rough. By noon we had entirely lost sight of Huahine, and about sunset we obtained our first distant glance of the lofty peaks of Eimeo. The wind now blew what the natives called a strong toerau, or westerly gale, and the agitation of the sea was proportionably increased. The inside of our open boat was, however, perfectly dry, and it appeared to shoot along, as the natives