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feelings, especially if it be is recollected that there were few seasons when a human body was not suspended from some of the branches, to propitiate the deity of the place.

The aoa was not entirely devoted to the nurture of that debasing superstition by which the people were oppressed. With the thin slender twigs or young branches of this tree, a strong kind of cloth was made, which they called ora, or aoa, and which, on account of its durability, was highly esteemed.

Garments made with the bark of a tree constituted the principal article of native dress, prior to the introduction of foreign cloth. It is manufactured chiefly by females, and was one of their most frequent employments. The name for cloth, among the Tahitians, is ahu. The Sandwich Island word tapa, is, we believe, never used in this sense, but signifies a part of the human body. In the manufacture of their cloth, the natives of the South Sea Islands use a greater variety of materials than their neighbours in the northern group: the bark of the different varieties of wauti, or paper mulberry, being the only article used by the latter; while the former employ not only the bark of the paper mulberry, which they call auti, but also that of the aoa and of the bread-fruit.

The process of manufacture is much the same in all, though some kinds are sooner finished than others. When the bark from the branches of the bread-fruit or auti is used, the outer green or brown rind is scraped off with a shell; it is then slightly beaten, and allowed to ferment, or is macerated in water. A stout piece of wood, resembling a beam, twenty or thirty feet long, and from six to nine inches square, with a groove cut in the under side, is fixed on the ground; across

this, the bark is laid and beaten with a heavy mallet of casuarina or iron-wood. The mallet is usually fifteen or eighteen inches long, about two inches square, and round at one end, for the purpose of being held firmly. The sides of the mallet are grooved; one side very coarse or large, the opposite side exceedingly fine. One of the remaining sides is generally cut in chequers or small squares, and the other is plain or ribbed. The Tihitian Cloth Mallet.

bark is placed lengthwise across the long piece of wood, and beaten first with the rough side of the mallet, and then with those parts that are finer.

Vegetable gum is rarely employed; in general, the resinous matter in the bark is sufficiently adhesive. The fibres of the bark are most completely interwoven by the frequent beating with the grooved or chequered side of the mallet; and when the piece is finished, the texture of the cloth is often remarkably fine and even, and the inequalities occasioned by the fine grooves, or small squares, give it the appearance of woven cloth. During the process of its manufacture, the cloth is kept saturated with moisture, and carefully wrapped in thick green leaves every time the workwomen leave off; but as soon as it is finished, they spread it to dry in the sun, and bleach it according to the purpose for which it is designed. The ore, or cloth, made with the bark of the aoa, is usually very thin, and of a dark brown colour;

that made with the bark of the bread-fruit and a mixture of the auti, is of a light brown and sometimes fawn colour; but the finest and most valuable kind is called hobu. It is made principally, and sometimes entirely, with the bark of the paper mulberry, and is bleached till it is beautifully white. This is chiefly worn by the females.

It is astonishing that they should be able, by a process so simple, to make bales, containing sometimes two hundred yards of cloth, four yards wide; the whole in one single piece, made with strips of bark seldom above four or five feet long, and, when spread open, not more than an inch and a half broad-joined together simply by beating it with the grooved mallet. When sufficiently bleached and dried, it is folded along the whole length, rolled up into a bale, and covered with a piece of matting, -this is called ruru vehe. The wealth of a chief is sometimes estimated by the number of these covered bales which he possesses. The more valuable kinds of cloth are rolled up in the same way, covered with matting or cloth of an inferior kind, and generally suspended from some part of the roof of the chief's house. The estimation in which it was held has been greatly diminished since they have become acquainted with European cloth, and large quantities are now seldom made. It is, however, still an article in general use among the lower classes of society, and the mother yet continues to beat her parure, or native pareu, for herself and children.

A number of smaller pieces are still made, among which the tiputa is one of the most valuable. It is prepared by beating a number of layers of cloth to gether, to render it thicker than the common cloth: for

the outside layer, they select a stout branch of the auti, or bread-fruit, about an inch and a half in diameter: this they prepare with great attention, and, having beaten it to the usual width and length, which is about ten feet long and three feet wide, they fix it on the outside, and attach it to the others by rubbing a small portion of arrow-root on the inner side, before beating it together. The tiputa of the Tahitians corresponds exactly with the poncho of the South Americans. It is rather longer, but is worn in the same manner, having a hole cut in the centre, through which, when worn, the head is passed; while the garment hangs down over the shoulders, breast, and back, usually reaching, both before and behind, as low as the knees. Next to the tiputa, the ahufara is a general article of dress. These are either square like a shawl, or resemble a scarf. They are sometimes larger, and correspond with a counterpane more than a shawl, and are always exceedingly splendid and rich in their colours.

The natives of the Society Islands have a variety of vegetable dyes, and display more taste in the variations and patterns of the cloth, than in any other use of colours. Much of the common cloth is dyed either with the bark of the aito, casuarina, or tiairi, aleurites. This gives it a kind of dark red or chocolate colour, and is supposed to add to its durability. The leaves of the arum are sometimes used, but brilliant red and yellow are their favourite hues. The former, which they call mati, is prepared by mixing the milky juice of the small berry of the mati, ficus prolixa, with the leaves of the tou, a species of cordia. When the dye is prepared by this combination, it is absorbed on the fibres of a kind of rush, and dried for use. It produces a most brilliant scarlet dye,

which, when preserved with a varnish of gum, retains its brightness till the garment is worn out. The yellow is prepared from the inner bark of the root of the nono, morinda citrifolia, and though far more fugitive than the scarlet of the mati, is an exceedingly bright colour. The yellow dye is prepared by infusing the bark of the root in water, in which the cloth is allowed to remain till completely saturated, when it is dried in the sun. The mati, or scarlet dye, is moistened with water, and laid on the dry cloth. Their patterns are fixed with the scarlet dye on a yellow ground, and were formerly altogether devoid of uniformity or regularity, yet still exhibiting considerable taste. They now fix a border round the ahufara, and arrange the patterns in different parts. Nature, and not art, supplies the pattern. They select some of the most delicate and beautiful ferns, or the hibiscus flowers: when the dye is prepared, they lay the leaf, or the flower, carefully on the dye; as soon as the surface is covered with the colouring matter, they fix the stained leaf or flower, with its leaflets or petals correctly adjusted on the cloth, and press it gradually and regularly down. When it is removed, the impression is often beautiful and clear.

The scarf or shawl, and the tiputa, are the only dresses prepared in this way, and it is difficult to conceive of the dazzling and imposing appearance of such a dress, loosely folded round the person of a handsome chieftain of the South Sea Islands, who perfectly understands how to exhibit it to the best advantage. This kind of cloth is made better by the Tahitians than any other inhabitants of the Pacific. It is not, however, equal to the wairiirii of the Sandwich Islanders. Much of this cloth, beautifully painted, is now employed in

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