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Polynesian Researches during a Residence of Nearly Six Years in the South Sea Islands

Polynesian Researches during a Residence of Nearly Six Years in the South Sea Islands
2 Volume Set


Part of Cambridge Library Collection - History of Oceania

  • Date Published: November 2013
  • availability: Available
  • format: Multiple copy pack
  • isbn: 9781108065382

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About the Authors
  • From humble origins, and trained by the London Missionary Society in theology, printing and rudimentary medicine, William Ellis (1794–1872) sailed for the Society Islands in 1816. He found himself at the cusp of major cultural change as Western influences affected the indigenous Polynesians. During his time there, Ellis became a skilled linguist and able chronicler of the traditional yet rapidly shifting way of life. He succeeded in capturing vivid stories of a leisured people who, without written language, had developed a rich oral tradition, social structure and belief system. Published in 1829, this two-volume collection proved to be an important reference work, notably for its natural history; it soon accompanied Darwin aboard the Beagle. Volume 1 describes early missions on Tahiti, Moorea and Huahine, including the development of Tahitian orthography and printing. In Volume 2, Ellis continues his anthropological observations on Huahine and Raiatea.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2013
    • format: Multiple copy pack
    • isbn: 9781108065382
    • length: 1174 pages
    • dimensions: 217 x 142 x 74 mm
    • weight: 1.3kg
    • contains: 26 b/w illus. 2 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Volume 1: Preface
    1. Historical notice of the discovery of the Pacific
    2. Voyage to New Zealand
    3. Voyage to Tubuai
    4. Character and death of Haamanemane
    5. First preaching in the native language
    6. Anchorage in Matavai
    7. Account of the remarkable change in the South Sea Islands
    8. First record of the names of the professors of Christianity
    9. Distillation of ardent spirits
    10. The refugees in Eimeo invited to return to Tahiti
    11. Account of the music and amusements of the islanders
    12. An account of the Areois
    13. Voyage to A-fa-re-ai-tu
    14. Times of taking food among the islands
    15. Arrival of missionaries from England
    16. Arrivals in Huahine
    17. Renewed endeavours to promote industry among the people
    18. Account of Taaroarii. Volume 2:
    1. Voyage to Raiatea
    2. Origin of the inhabitants of the South Sea Islands
    3. General state of society
    4. Schools erected in Huahine
    5. Improved circumstances of the females
    6. Public assemblies during the week
    7. Station at Maeva
    8. Description of Polynesian idols
    9. Increased desire for books
    10. Former diseases in the islands comparatively few and mild
    11. General view of a Christian church
    12. Government of the South Sea Islands
    13. Power of the chiefs and proprietors of land
    14. Pomare's proposed restrictions on barter
    15. Promulgation of the new code of laws in Huahine
    16. Visit from the Windward Islands
    17. Singular custom of the chiefs in marching to battle
    18. Arrival of the deputation at Tahiti
    19. Voyage to Borabora.

  • Author

    William Ellis

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