View of the island of Ulietea with a double canoe and a boat house

Ulietea (Raiatea) was the centre from which the Society Islands and Tahiti were populated, and the homeland to which the Maori people trace back their historic origin. Field drawing by Sydney Parkinson in August 1769. Parkinson (a Scottish landscape artist on Captain James Cook's first Endeavor voyage from 1768-1771) made studies of plants and animal species that were then engraved to be included in John Hawkesworth's Voyages (an account of the journeys by Captain Cook, Vice Admiral John Byron, and Joseph Banks published on behalf of the Admirality in 1773).

Cook refers to the Raiateqans as "very ingenious in building their Proes or Canoes and seem to take as much Care of them having large Sheds or houses to put them in built for the Purpose."

Boat houses were termed "Ewharraow" by the local population. The man on the left is likely carrying breadfruit, a starchy fruit that has a potato-like flavour when cooked (similar to bread) and is high in carbohydrates and protein. Breadfruit was seen as a highly productive food and was later transported to the Caribbean as a cheap, high-energy food source for enslaved Africans.

Mounted in Album PAJ2143, with PAJ2145 - PAJ2206.

Object Details

ID: PAJ2155
Type: Print
Display location: Not on display
Creator: Parkinson, Sydney
Date made: 1770s
Credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
Measurements: Sheet: 200 x 460 mm
Parts: Plates of Cook's Voyages - Voyage 1 (Album)

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