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Narrative of a journey round the world during the years 1841 and 1842 [volume 2] Simpson, George 1847

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Array    THE
The University of British Columbia Library  ■MMMaMHAtaan  mtimammmMWim&szsajm
srtigWiBagg^ NARRATIVE
of the Hudson's bay company's territories
in north america.
1847. F. Shoberl, Jun., Printer to H.K.H. Prince Albert, Rupert Street.
mmsssm^mimsmssmmms^ CONTENTS
SANDWICH islands.
Origin of Hawaiian nation—Amount of population— Language—
Food — Houses—Dress—Appearance and disposition — Customs and
amusements . . . . . .1
Navy — Army — Revenue —Government—Religion-
Productions and Manufactures—Trade
.    70
Troubles with sailors—Visit to Nuannau—Kamehameha's great victory—Wells in Honolulu—Subterranean brook—Idolatrous temple—
Cannibalism—Suicide of a Chinese—Chinese and Japanese—Power of
false religion to resist truth—Chinese residents—Death of heir apparent — Governor Kekuanaoa's activity — Sitting on hams a mark of
respect—Royal mausoleum—Distribution of Kamehameha's bones—
Causes of scarcity of children of chiefs—Bickerings of all sorts among
foreign residents — More trouble with sailors — Voyage to Mowee —
Arrival at Lahaina—Rekeke's hotel—Mr. Baldwin's chapel—Rev. Mr.
Richards — King, Haalilio, and John Young — Royal mausoleum —
Kekauluohi, the premier-—Excellent quarters, with maids of honour as
bed-makers—Visit from Messrs. Richards and Baldwin—Queen Kaluma
—Visit to the premier along with Mr. Richards—Jack of clubs—Native
dance — Swimming of natives, and aversion of foreign residents to
bathing — Lahaina, its population and situation — High school — Arrangements for sending a deputation to England, France, and the United
States—Haalilio's character and death—King and suite dining on board
'—, ■■■KMiiMtfl
—Kaluma again, the silent eloquence of her female attendants—Policy
of government in managing the aristocracy—Paying farewell visits—
Accompanied on board by King and suite—Voyage to Sitka, change of
temperature—-Mount Edgecumbe—Retrospect of journey, the English
race having been dominant every where—Common origin and common
destiny of English and Russians . . . 143
Landing—Difference of day of week—Bishop of Sitka—Departure
for Taco and Stikine—Tragical end of Mr. John McLoughlin—Critical
position of establishment and consequent proceedings—Abundance of
pine and cypress—Voyage back to Sitka—Arrival on Easter Sunday—
Peculiar customs of this festival—Divine service—Officers of Russian
American Company—Mechanics and labourers—Married women—Hospital—Bishop's farewell sermon—Strictness of clergy in general and also
of laity—Ecclesiastical zeal of Russian Government, united with spirit of
toleration—Medicinal springs, favourable influence on vegetation as well
as health—Perseverance of natives in bathing—Water impregnated with
sulphur—Capital mistake of a recent visitor — Redoubt—Miserable
weather at Sitka—List of shipping—Sailing of Constantine with M.
Rotscheff and family—Sailing of Ochotsk—Tchuktchi of Siberia—Fair
of Ostrovnoye—Tchuktchi chief's notion of perfect happiness—Behring's
Straits—Climate, British Isles and Kamschatka—Indian fight—Immediate stop to the issue of liquor among Indians—The evil in question the
inevitable result of competition—Political relation between Indians and
Russians—Yassack, its origin and progress—Kaluscian funeral—Wedding
at Sitka—Bridesmen and bridesmaids-—Embarkation on board the Alexander and departure from New Archangel . . .179
Lightness and variableness of winds—Ship's discipline, &c.—Drunken
priest — The Parachute, of New Bedford—Whales rapidly diminishing
in number—Unknown island—Hunting of sea-otters—Danger of sinking in the small baidarka, and affecting mode of meeting death—Russian
surveys of the northern shores of Asia, anticipated by England at either
extremity of line—Voyages of Cook and Billings—Aleutian Archipelago
probably the original channel of communication between the two continents—Behring's Straits perhaps a passage from America to Asia rather
than from Asia to America—Aleutian Islands, their ethnographic characteristics}—Probable course of emigrants from Aleutian Islands on landing in America—Increasing difficulty of tracing the migrations of tribes
srtigftlffVEBSW&i CONTENTS.
—Productions of Aleutian Islands — Russians first to plant civilization
on north-west coast, statements of Shelekoff—Signs of land—Kamschatka, its corrupt government — Popular delusion with respect to
despotism—Passage between Kurile Islands into Sea of Ochotsk—Dense
fogs, contrivances to neutralize them — Sleeping whale^—Story of Mr.
Erasmus and the fogs—Kuriles apparently continuation of Kamschatka
—Immediate influence of Russia from Sweden to Japan—Sea of Ochotsk
—River Amoor, its physical value neutralized by politics—Collision of
Russia and China on the Amoor—Sight of land, and preparations for
going ashore—Impenetrable barrier of ice—Hair seals—Sleeping whale
—Keel-hauled whale —Arrival at Ochotsk—Optical illusion — Record
of disasters in these seas . . . . .215
Ochotsk—Madame Zavoika's horticulture—Food, health, &c, of inhabitants—Ship-building establishment—Courts and lawyers—Salt—
Governor Golovin—Russians, and Ostrogs, and Cossacks—Shipwrecked
Japanese—Disciple of Origen—Brick tea—Mr. Atlasoff's snow-shoes—
Promiscuous bathing—Bargaining for horses with Jacob—Departure
from Ochotsk—Forests of pine, &c, with swamp-tea—Jacob's policy—
Mr. ShilofFs caravan—Fidelity and skill of Yakuti—Cossack's zeal and
boastfulness — Spirit of the forest—Jacob's care of horses—:Notes of
cuckoo—Fourteen fords on horseback—Lord Byron and Captain Cochrane—Industry of Yakuti, as also hospitality-—Dropping in of three
friends to dinner I—Cossack's discipline—Caravan — Mode of feeding
horses in the night—Real hell of horses — Inundations—Threatened
attack on the part of a bear—Country more fertile—Mail from Yakutsk,
disappointment—Plant that intoxicates and disables horses—Mistake of
Cossack—Inundations—Herds of cattle and caravans—Summer by day
and winter by night—Superstition of Yakuti—Height of land, with a
lake feeding both seas—Perpetual snow and ice—Caravans without end
— Udoma crossing—Hardly any horses of a dark colour—- Danger in
pastimes from runaway convicts—New ice in middle of July—Valley of
the Nalivnoi—Difficulty in ascertaining names—Wet St. Nicholas Day
—Yakut's mode of estimating distances—Allack Youmi—Musquitoes—
Moor fowl — Delays of travelling — Rein-deer — Ooloonach ferry —
Scenery now softer—Swamps bridged with corduroy — The Aldan—
Horses of Yakuti well trained—Kumyss—The Amga—The Capercailzie,
snipe, and plover-—Orelach—Traveller's book—Tshooropsa—Porotoff-
skaya—Visit from son of a Yakut chief—Tshetshiguiskaya—Temooloya
—Locusts—Toolgyachtach—Lena and other rivers once much higher—
Arrival at Lena—Arrival at Yakutsk    ....    248 MM
2 7v\d
Revenue and Population—Temperature—Agriculture-—Site of Town
Fur trade and Ivory trade—Governor Roodikoff—Mr.Shagin—Native
working in metals—Gluttony of Yakuti—Social factions—Hospital—
Buildings—Curiosities—Departure from Yakutsk—Bestach—Passenger
boats—Stolby—St. Elias — Condition of Peasants—Marchinskaya—
Mr. Atlasoff—Reindeer—Stranded in a squall—Solianskaya—Olek-
minsk—Mr. Atlasoff's hospitality—Siberian conquests of Cossacks—
Horticulture—Sables of the Olekma—Berdinskaya—Chase and capture
of Yakuti—Cossack's discipline—Wild fruits—Condition of Peasants—
Hurrah Rocks—Heavy bateau—Water-sails—Kamenskaya—Condition
of Peasants—Yerbinsky—Pooloodoffskaya—Treatment of Criminals—
Vittimsk, Sables and Talc—Tungusi—Aborigines in general—Boat
upset—Character of Women—Doobroffskaya—Echo—Cheeks of the
Lena—Echo—Wild fruits—Routine of existence—Our Saviour's Name -
Day—Grand ball—Return of English letters from Ochotsk—Condition
of Peasants—Goitres—Alexeyeffskaya—Cossack's irresponsible cruelty
-—Kirensk, sleepy-headed officials—Adventure ashore—Soberskaya—
Nettle kale—-Oolkanskaya—Beasts of prey—Character of Peasants—
Inundations—Condition of Peasants—Snuff—Kosarki—Oostooskaya—
Progress of Cossack Conquerors—Oostuginskaya—Figoloffskaya .    297
Tyoomenzora—Vercholensk—Katschooga—Bratsky Steppe—Burat
Settlements —Village of exiles — Koodinskaya — Irkutsk — Governor
Patneffsky—Governor-General Rupert—Archbishop of Eastern Siberia
—Chinese jealousy—Lake Baikal compared with Lake Superior—Mines
of Nertshinsk—Trade of Krachta—Steam on Lake Baikal—Mission of
Selenginsh—Mines and washeries—Irkutsk, its hospitalities—Departure
from Irkutsk
forts of travelling'
Mode of foraging—Convicts—Nishney Udinsk—Discom-
Alzamoos—Peasant's house—Colonization of Siberia
-The Burassa—Kansk—An exile's establishment—Krasnoyarsk, delays
—Mines and washeries—Chief of the Burats—Ostrogs for convicts—x
Kosulskaya, quarrelsome postmaster—Atchinsk—The Tchulim—Dilapidated tombs — Inquisitive hostess — The Kia— Kyskal — Tomsk—
Crawley an albino—False information — The Tom—Tartars—Bara-
temm3m£&mmm&m*& CONTENTS.
binsky Steppe—Gipsies—Ubinskoi—Kainsk—Condition of peasants—
Omsk—the Irtish—Tobolsk     .....   390
Retrospect of Russian History—Yermac, his victories and death—
Establishment of Russian power in Siberia—Tobolsk—Exiles—Tiumen,
Mayor's dinner—Province of Perm—Kamishloff, doctors differ—Fair of
Irbit—Condition of peasants—Ekaterineburg, mines-r-Value of Siberia
to Russia, far-trade, Chinese trade, ivory-trade, mines and washeries,
geographical position, moral and political amelioration—Height of land
—Kama—Countess Strogonoff—Churlish and obsequious postmaster—
Kungur—Russians not Asiatics—Perm—Inland navigation—Countess
Strogonoff—Courtesy and honesty—Province of Viatka—Armed footpads—Mookikikea—Merchants from Fair of Nishney Novgorod—
Borlacki—Kasan, past and present—Volga—Forests of oak—Disturbances among peasants—Delays at posthouses, and artifices of postmasters
—Nishney Novgorod—Troubles of a pair of dancers—Sheremetieff's
estates and peasants-—^Vladimir—Uses of a pipe-stem—Symptoms of
vicinity of metropolis — Moscow — Vishney Volotchok—Valdai —
Novgorod the Great—Military settlers—St. Petersburg—Voyage to
London . . . . . . .419 ikimSSt^BSSSSHSSi NARRATIVE
Origin of Hawaiian nation—Amount of population—Language—
Food—Houses — Dress—Appearance and disposition—Customs and
As our visit took place in the dull season, for the
whalers had not begun to arrive on their way from the
winter fishing of the south to the summer fishing of
the north, so small a town as Honolulu could hardly
yield a sufficient number of incidents to vary the daily
entries of a month's residence; I therefore abandoned,
during my stay, the form of a journal, merely recording, from time to time, my impressions of what I saw
and heard. These impressions I propose to arrange in
this and the next chapter; and for this purpose I shall
separate, though without aiming at extreme accuracy of
classification, all that relates to the people in their indi-
vidua! capacities, from all that distinguishes them, if I
may so speak, as a body politic.
I shall, in the first place, consider the interesting
though purely speculative question, as to the original
source of the native population.
All the Polynesians, as I have already stated, have
clearly had one and the same parentage. Though their
general resemblances in manners and customs, in religion and government, in appearance and dress, might
be made to fill volumes, yet they would, one and all of
them, be less conclusive on the point, than the fundamental correspondence both in the words and in the
structure of their languages. With but little difficulty,
and in some of the instances with none at all, Tahitians,
Marquesans, Samoans, Tangans, New Zealanders, and
Hawaiians, to say nothing of the less known groups,
can render themselves intelligible to each other; and of
this similarity of dialects, the strongest, as well as the
most gratifying proof is to be found in the fact that
native converts of one archipelago have sometimes gone
forth, as missionaries, to communicate the glad tidings
of salvation to another. Thus a chief, who accompanied
Mr. Ellis from Tahiti to the Sandwich Islands, often
addressed the natives with effect; and Sir Edward Belcher found a little colony of Samoan teachers labouring,
or rather wishing to labour, among the savages of the
New Hebrides. To offer more specific evidence of the
fundamental correspondence in question, the subjoined
table is quite decisive, at least with respect to words;
for   the  identical   meanings   of   six  nearly identical ROUND THE WORLD.
sounds, in three different dialects, cannot possibly be
Perhaps a careful examination of different dialects
might suggest some hints as to their comparative antiquity. As the general tendency of language to become
softer by change would derive special force from the
feeble and almost childish organs of the race under
consideration, any dialect might reasonably be deemed
more recent, in proportion as its alphabet and pronunciation might be more meagre and effeminate. Now,
the common language of the Polynesian Isles appears
to have travelled from the west towards the east. Thus
the Hawaiians, and apparently the Tahitians also, abhor
a concourse of consonants, while the New Hebrides
have their Erromanga, the Feejees their Banga, and the
Friendly Islands their Tonga ; or, to use the better
known name, their Tongataboo. If an Hawaiian were
desired to pronounce any one of these three words, he
would either insert a vowel between the two consonants, or omit the harsher consonant; and he would,
most probably, adopt the latter course, just as he would
transform England into Enelani. In all probability,
Tonga and Tona, or Kona, the name of a district, already mentioned, of Hawaii, are one and the same
word; and, to give an instance of which there can be
no doubt:   tangata, the Samoan  for man,  has  been
softened into the Hawaiian tanata, or kanaka. Again,
the very name of Samoa, the chief of the Navigator
Isles, involves the letter s, which the Hawaiians, as also,
I believe, the Tahitians, altogether reject, as being too
much for their powers of utterance. Thus they change
fashions into patena or pakena, missionary into miti-
nary, or mikinary, and consul into tonatele, or konakele.
Finally, the Marquesan and Tahitian dialects, though
they partake, in an eminent degree, of the softness of
the Hawaiian, have yet retained, at least, one consonant, namely f, which it has discarded. Thus Fatuiva,
one of the Marquesan Isles, and Paofai, a chief of
Tahiti, would, in the mouth of an Hawaiian, respectively become Patuiwa and Paopai; while there can be
no mistake as to the original orthography, inasmuch as
thesis distinguished, in the one word, from v, and in
the other from p. Might not a similar application be
made of the table which preceded this paragraph, with
respect to these three dialects ? In the first four of its
six words, the v of the Tahitians and Marquesans becomes
the w of the Hawaiians—the former being, of course,
a consonant; but the latter, however it may be classed
by grammarians, being really oo, sounded as quickly as
possible. If there be any truth in these desultory and
incomplete suggestions, then must this archipelago have
been peopled after the Marquesas and the Society Islands,
and they again after the more westerly groups.
This result, which, so far as the Sandwich Islands are
concerned, agrees with the traditionary lore of the archipelago, is consistent with nearly all the arguments
which can be brought to bear on the subject. Looking,
on the map, at the tolerably continuous chain of islands
>m-immmmmmwssm®mmm ROUND THE WORLD.
and groups of islands, from Sumatra to the Marquesas,
and at the comparatively open ocean between this its
last link and the American continent, a plain man
would instinctively infer, at least in the absence of evidence to the contrary, that Polynesia, as certainly as
Australasia itself, must have been peopled, not from the
new world, but from the old; and he would find his
inference materially confirmed by the fact, that, on any
and every conceivable hypothesis, the isles of the Pacific
could have been colonized from the westward long before the eastern shores of that ocean contained a single
family of human beings; while, on farther investigation, he would confessedly discover vastly more numerous traces of Asia than of America in the ethnographic
characteristics of the Polynesian Isles.
The single, absolutely the only, answer to all this, is
the physical fact that the trade-wind blows from the
east along the whole breadth of the route which has
just been chalked out for the primeval colonists of the
islets of this greatest of all seas. Now, in the face of
so much direct proof of an Asiatic origin, the evidence
in question, of an American origin, amounts to nothing,
unless the difficulty of advancing from west to east in spite
of the trade-wind actually amounts to an impossibility|
But, so far from amounting to an impossibility, the
difficulty itself, strictly so called, can hardly be said to
have existed. As the trades, even at their steadiest,
take to themselves a few points of elbow-room, having
ranged, for instance, in our own case, as already mentioned, between N.E. and E.S.E., the Polynesian groups,
occupying about fifty degrees of latitude, might all be
intersected, without anv formidable interventions of a
foul wind, by one and the same track, starting from the
westward; and, even independently of this constant oscillation of the ordinary current of air, the same result could
be still more easily and more directly attained with the
aid of the opposite monsoons, which blow, with greater
or less regularity, during two or three successive months
of the year. Moreover, on such a point, one fact is
more conclusive than a score of arguments; and, unfortunately for the partisans of the east wind, all the facts
are stubborn supporters of the other side of the question. The inhabitants of each group, in whatever direction their ancestors reached it, think nothing of sailing
from its westerly to its easterly islands; and Captain
Beechey fell in with several men and women, who had
drifted six hundred miles with a large canoe in the very
teeth of the general direction of the prevailing trades.
But, even if the alleged difficulty amounted to an
actual impossibility, the claims of Asia to be the cradle
of the Polynesians, though they might be weakened,
would yet not be disproved. The westerly gales, which
generally blow on either side of the region of the trades,
might carry vessels far enough to the eastward to make
the tropical breeze a fair wind to the westward, more
particularly if they had started from the more northerly
coasts of Asia; and, in fact, one Japanese junk, in December, 1832, was driven to Woahoo, with four men
alive out of her crew of nine; while again, in 1839,
another was found drifting about half way on the same
involuntary voyage, with several individuals on board,
the same whom we afterwards saw at Ochotsk, which
they had reached immediately from Kamschatka, on
their homeward route from the Sandwich Islands.
"#&m —
Farther, if the trade-winds had really rendered a
voyage from west to east impracticable, Polynesia
would, in all probability, never have been peopled.
There is not the least evidence for believing, there is
not the slightest reason for supposing, that the aborigines of America ever possessed a canoe or any other
vessel stout enough to survive the dangers of the intervening ocean, during a voyage which could not, under
the most favourable circumstances, occupy less than
three or four weeks. All the obstacles of the trade-
wind notwithstanding, I should more readily conclude
that the Marquesas colonized Southern America than
that Southern America colonized the Marquesas—so
far, at least, as the mere question of navigation might
be concerned.
From what country, then, of Asia, did the Poly*
nesians spring ? Almost, to a moral certainty, from some
point, or rather points, between the southern extremity
of Malacca and the northern limits of Japan—an answer
which appears to be corroborated by that most conclusive of all features of resemblance, the similarity of
language. Premising that, in such a case, nothing like
identity is necessarily to be expected—for, according to
general experience, the human race was diffused over
the globe rather by the migration of whole tribes than
by the emigration of parts of them—there seems to be
no ground for doubting that the dialects of Polynesia
are connected with the languages of the adjacent coasts
of Asia. To say nothing of the admitted fact that the
Chinese residents of the Sandwich Islands pick up the
Hawaiian with great facility in a short time, the Malayan
tongue is universally allowed to bear a striking analogy
wur rrri~i~-~~'T--"
to the language of the groups of the Pacific.    To the
eye, indeed, and perhaps also to the ear, there is said
to be a staggering difference in the predominance of
vowels on the part of the latter, and of consonants on
the part of the former.    This difference, however, is
susceptible  of a  satisfactory explanation.    The concourse of consonants in the Malayan arises, in a great
measure, from an admixture of the Arabic, which, to a
moral certainty, must have taken place long after Polynesia began to be peopled ; and, even if the admixture
in question had been anterior to the colonization of any
of the islands, the concourse of consonants just  mentioned   would,   to  a  considerable   extent,  have  been
nominal, inasmuch as the short vowels of the Arabic are
sounded without being written.    But, farther, the peculiarity under consideration of the language of Malacca,
supposing it to have been both original and real, would
tend rather to support than to impugn the foregoing
views.    The Hawaiian has been shown to embody fewer
consonants than the Marquesan or the Tahitian, and the
Tahitian and the Marquesan  again to embody fewer
than the Samoan, or the Fejeean, or the Tongan, or the
dialect of the New Hebrides, the taboo of the eastern
groups, to add another instance to the instances already
cited, assuming the form of tamboo to the westward.
Now, on the very same principle, one ought not to be
surprised to find that the consonants become more numerous and more harsh as one approaches to the native
seats of a language so widely diffused.
To conclude this head with one remark more : if any
ethnographic similitudes do exist between America and
Polynesia, they may be safely considered as common
results of one and the same cause. Though the new
world must have received inhabitants from the old
across the strait which separates them, just as certainly
as if the two were connected by an isthmus, yet it
might, in all probability, have received others, and
those, too, in more regular and continuous streams,
along the chain of stepping-stones which extend from
China to the north-west coast, comprehending Japan,
the Kurile Islands, and the Aleutian archipelagoes ; and,
to show that this supposition is far within the limits
both of possibility and of probability, a Japanese junk,
such as has been used since the first settlement of the
country, lately found its way to the western shores of
the new continent with a living crew on board, and without the aid of any intermediate place of refreshment or
of rest. In a word, America and Polynesia appear to
have been chiefly, if not solely, colonized from one and
the same general region of Eastern Asia.
But the origin of the nation has in it less to interest
us than that sentence of death which seems to be hansr-
ing over it, in common with many other aboriginal
tribes of Polynesia and America.
The inhabitants of the group were estimated by Cook
to be about four hundred thousand in number. But this
calculation, besides being at best a guess, was inevitably
based on incomplete and erroneous grounds. At each
of the few points which he visited, Cook, as an object
not merely of curiosity but also literally of worship,
must have seen crowds that'formed no part of its permanent population, while he could hardly have been aware MMM
of the comparatively scanty extent of land capable of
sustaining human life; and, independently of such extraneous causes of exaggeration, he must naturally have
been disposed rather to overrate than otherwise the
value of his discovery. In all probability, the actual
population of the whole archipelago, when Cook visited
it in 1778 and 1779, did not exceed the half of his
vague estimate. In 1792, Vancouver, who had accompanied Cook on his last voyage, was led to conclude
that the number of inhabitants had been greatly diminished during the interval of thirteen years, more particularly in Hawaii, the island to which hitherto Kamehameha's wars had been confined; but, though a
diminution had most probably taken place, yet much of
the apparent difference must have arisen from the circumstance that ships were no longer regarded as the
floating temples of a race of gods.
In 1832, the first census was taken; and since then
a second, in 1836. I subjoin the results, in connexion
with the dimensions and area of each of the inhabited
islands, expressed respectively in running and square
J Lanai   .    .
| Molokoi    .
Woahoo   .
Kauai  .    .
Whole Group
88 by 73
48 by 30
17 by 9
40 by 7
11 by 8
46 by 25
24 by 22
20 by   7
108,579 —i
In or about 1840, a third census, I believe, was
taken, which, though I have not seen the whole of the
official returns, is yet generally considered to have
reduced the population to about eighty-eight thousand,
a number which, from such partial information as I have
been able to procure, I have no reason to regard as less
than the truth. Kauai, the most level and productive
island in the group, is divided into four districts, in
every one of which, as the following short table will
show, the young of both sexes, under eighteen years of
age, complete, amounted, according to the census in
question, to something less than a fourth part of the
whole population:—
Boys and Girls .
All others
Totals      .    .    .
Here was an average of one person under eighteen to
rather more than three persons above it — a state of
things which would carry depopulation written on its
very face, unless every creature without exception were
to attain the good old age of seventy-five. But the
disproportion between progeny and parents would become still greater, on taking into account the fact that
many of the " boys and girls " must have had " boys
and girls " of their own, so as to leave perhaps hardly
half a child to each couple ef those who were classed as
men and women in the census. One district in Woahoo
afforded the only instance in which the disproportion in
question was materially lessened, the inhabitants under
eighteen and those above it respectively amounting to OVERLAND JOURNEY
809 and 1983; but even there the fatal destiny of the
people was rapidly accomplishing, the births for the
year then last past having been 61 and the deaths 132 ;
so that, if all the 61 infants had swelled the list of
deaths as well as of births, still 71 individuals must
have perished — a deficiency about one-sixth greater
than all the infants, if strong and healthy, could ever
have supplied. To conclude this notice of the census of
1840 with one fact more, the most populous three districts of Kauai, containing between them 5,541 adults,
possessed only 68 men and 65 women, who had more
than two children each, in the face, too, of the bribe
offered to all such in the shape of an exemption from
certain taxes.
Of the only two modes in which depopulation can be
doing its work, deficiency of births is shown by these
details to be far more influential than excess of deaths :
in other words, a nation is rapidly vanishing from the
face of the earth, because its ordinary degree of
tear and wear is not recruited from the ranks of a
rising generation. Till lately, it is true, this was not
so decidedly the case, temporary causes having operated,
for a long time after the date of the discovery, to carry
off the old perhaps in a greater ratio than the young.
Kamehameha's wars, conducted, as they were, on an
unusually extensive scale, and rendered more fatal by
the use of firearms, destroyed thousands in battle;
while, through the famine and pestilence which followed
in their train, they indirectly more than doubled the
slaughter. Again, these wars were almost immediately
succeeded by a still heavier scourge, in the prosecution
of a trade which, by a mysterious dispensation, of Pro-
vidence, virtually sacrificed to the idols of a foreign land
a far greater number of human victims than had ever
been actually consumed on the blood-stained altars of
the group. Sandal-wood, in which the islands abounded,
was known to bring high prices in China, where it was
burnt, as a fragrant offering, before the images of the
' O Cj7 O
gods; and being, therefore, found to furnish the best
means of supplying those artificial wants which occasional glimpses of civilization had created, it was sold
in such quantities, as, in one particular year, to have
yielded about four hundred thousand dollars.
The procuring of this lucrative medium of exchange
caused, in various ways, an enormous waste of life.
As the sandal-wood grew chiefly on rugged and almost
inaccessible ■ heights, the natives, accustomed, as they
were on the coasts, to a temperature approaching more
nearly to perfection, both in degree and in steadiness,
than perhaps any other in the world, were doomed to
endure the chilly air of the mountains without shelter
and without clothing, the cold of the night being aggravated by the toil of the day; and, wnen they had
accomplished their tasks with bodies enfeebled by these
constant privations, and not uncommonly also by want
of food, they were compelled to transport the whole
on naked shoulders to the beach, by paths hardly practicable in many places to an unburdened passenger.
As a matter of course, many of the poor wretches died
in their harness, while many more of them prematurely
sank under the corroding effects of exposure and exhaustion.
During the reign of Kamehameha, who monopolized
the trade in question, such evils were in a considerable i ruftwinatTi
degree checked by his comparatively enlightened policy;
but no sooner was he succeeded, in 1819, by Liho Liho,
than they were not only systematized in the most cruel
manner, but accompanied by incidental evils fully as
fatal as themselves. That thoughtless and dissipated
youth surrendered his father/s monopoly to individual
chiefs, who knew as little of wisdom as they did of
mercy; to hard-hearted oligarchs, in whose eyes satins
and velvets, china and plate, wines and sweetmeats,
were infinitely more precious commodities than the lives
of serfs. Under the new order of things, the men were
driven like cattle to the hills, to every cleft in the rocks
that contained a sapling of the sacred fuel; while,
through the consequent neglect of agriculture and the
fisheries, the women and children, without the controlling
power either of social decencies or of domestic affections,
were left to snatch from each other, the strong from the
weak and the weak from the helpless, such miserable
pittances as rapacious tyrants and hungry thralls were
likely to spare for idle mouths. Never was the force of
the psalmist's curse, " Set thou an ungodly man to be
ruler over him," more clearly illustrated.
Happily, however, the calamities, which once so fearfully thinned the adult population, contained in themselves the seeds of their own cure. Kamehameha's
wars established universal and perpetual peace; and the
almost utter extirpation of the sandal-wood divested the
chiefs of their principal motive for withdrawing their
vassals from the ordinary tasks of procuring and preparing the means of human subsistence.
To return to the consideration of the present time,
there are two causes which still continue,  though in
xmwwsszsns!* ROUND THE WORLD.
very unequal proportions, to poison the sources of national life ; a spirit, or at least a practice, of emigration
among the men, and the depravity of the women.
With regard to the first point, about a thousand males
in the very prime of life are estimated annually to leave
the islands, some going to California, others to the
Columbia, and many on long and dangerous voyages,
particularly in whaling vessels, while a considerable
portion of them are said to be permanently lost to their
country, either dying during their engagements, or settling in other parts of the world.
Though this constant drain doubtless has, and, in
fact, must have, an unfavourable influence on the annual
increase of the people, yet, as it diminishes the number
of adults at least as certainly, if not so extensively, as
of children, it accounts, only in a very trifling degree,
for the disproportion between the old and the young;
while, at the same time, the census of 1840 shows either
that the cause is exaggerated, or that its effects are
overrated ; for, in the four districts aforesaid of Kauai,
the taxable men, as distinguished from old men, and
the taxable women, as similarly distinguished, were
respectively 2,784, and 2,213 ; the former bearing to the
latter a ratio somewhat higher than that of five to four.
On the second, therefore, of the two causes mentioned
at the beginning of this paragraph, the depravity of the
women must mainly rest the blame of poisoning the
sources of national life; and, unfortunately, it is but too
able to bear the burden. Speaking of the mass, the
females of the Sandwich Islands are worthy representatives of those of their sex who, after Cook's death, witnessed with indifference from the ships the slaughter of 16
their countrymen and friends; while, as if still more
unequivocally to evince their want of feeling, they pronounced the conflagration of the neighbouring village
to be " a very fine sight." In fact, this comparison, so
far as the story has just been told, involves a libel on
the dead; for, as they were not necessarily the mothers
of any of those whose miseries they mocked, they might
still have possessed, when occasion should draw it forth,
that maternal love which palpably finds no home in the
bosoms of their descendants.
To say nothing of such things as infanticide, and that,
too, in its most appalling form of living burial, or of
artificial abortion, with its consequent sterility, the
mothers of the Sandwich Islands indulge in the lesser
abominations of exchanging children, and of allowing
pet puppies to share Nature's food with the offspring of
their own wombs,—the latter habit strongly contrasting
in motive with an incident of the kind mentioned by
Baron Wrangell, in the case of an aboriginal woman of
Siberia, who, after a season of great mortality among
the sledge-dogs, suckled two young ones, the' sole remains of her husband's team, to be the germ of a new
stock. So far from wondering at the numerical deficiency of the rising generation, we ought rather to be
surprised that there is a rising generation at all in a
country where women regard their own infants and
those of others with equal affection, and lavish on either
far less of their fondness than on the progeny of one of
the lower animals.
Previously to the discovery, it is true, the women
(the fair reader must really pardon the expression) were
the same devils in human shape; and yet the work of ROUND THE WORLD.
depopulation had not then begun. Down to that epoch,
however, the disposition of the sex was controlled,
singularly enough, by a state of war, as it has, since
that time, been developed, at least as singularly, by the
beginnings of civilization.
As there were constant rivalries not only between the
different islands but also between the different sections
of each island, every chief had a direct interest in increasing the number of his dependents, and in maintaining them in a condition fit for service; and he had,
therefore, a motive, such as was level to the most untutored capacity, for generally acting as the father of
his people. If his vassals were made to labour, they
produced or collected the necessaries of life, the only
wealth then known; if he exacted from them a share
of the fruits of their toil, he kept open hospitality for
all comers. In a word, each little community had for
its common object the supply of the common wants.
This state of things, now so obsolete as to look like a
romance, is shadowed forth in the following short specimen of the ancient songs—a funeral wail for a departed
leader :
Alas! Alas! dead is my chief,
Dead is my lord and my friend ;
My friend in the season of famine,
My friend in the time of drought;
My friend in poverty,
My friend in the rain and the wind,
My friend in the heat and the sun,
My friend in the cold from the mountain,
My friend in the storm,
My friend in the calm,
My friend in the eight seas;
Alas! Alas ! gone is my friend,
And no more will return.
VOL. II. C &£9S£
In those times, the influence of the chief was, of
course, powerfully directed towards the rearing of children, while the abundance of food was such as seldom
to bring the mother's personal convenience into collision
with her feudal duty. Soon, however, peace and commerce, which casually came hand in hand, wrought a
change somewhat analogous to that which similar causes
gradually produced in the wilder parts of Scotland.
The rank and safety of the chief no longer depended on
the number and efficiency of his followers, while, in
order to purchase the luxuries of civilization, he filched
from them their necessaries of life, or, as in the case of
the sandal-wood, screwed out of them that labour which
ought to have supplied the simple wants of themselves
and their families. In the consequent struggle for
food, women, if they had failed to stifle life in their
wombs, regarded their infants as intruders ; and, without waiting for that extremity of famine which more
than once made the daughters of the most enlightened
city of the times devour their own offspring, they deliberately and systematically got rid of their unbidden
guests, merely as a matter of general precaution; while,
in the taxation of every head on the part of the merciless
oligarchs, fathers as well as mothers were furnished
with a still more definite motive for regarding their
little ones as natural enemies.
But the result, as stated by one of the missionaries,
is far more conclusive than any language of mine. In
1824, Mr. Stuart wrote thus: | We have the clearest
proof, that in those parts of the islands where the influence of the mission has not yet extended, two thirds of
the infants born perish by the hands of their own pa- ROUND THE WORLD.
rents before attaining the first or second year of their
age." Since that time, it is true, the tyranny of the
chiefs has been limited and mitigated by law, though
perhaps more decidedly in theory than in practice ; but
still the taxation, which will be detailed hereafter,
is high enough to leave parent and child at issue in the
grand business of keeping body and soul together I and,
even without reference to ^any public exactions, the
general diffusion of a taste for foreign finery brings the
infant into competition, too often, I fear, into hopeless
competition, with such merely external symbols of civilization as shoes, and gowns, and bonnets^ But, in
addition to all this, civilization has an account of much
longer standing to settle. The original discoverers introduced a certain malady which, though prevented by
the matchless salubrity of the climate from destroying
adults, tends to poison the springs of life almost as
effectually as the system of artificial abortion. If the
latter permanently incapacitates a woman for becoming
a mother, the former brings the infant into the world
with its sentence of speedy death engraven in its very
Viewed, therefore, by itself, civilization has been, and
still continues to be, a cankerworm, to prey on the
population of the group. When a superior race, without fraud or violence, plants its thousands where an
inferior race could hardly maintain its hundreds, nothing
but the mere mawkishness of sentimentality could attempt to avert or retard the change; but there is something truly deplorable in the reflection that, in this
archipelago, civilization is sweeping the aborigines from
the land of their fathers, without placing in their stead
c 2 At
others better than themselves. If there be any truth
in the preceding paragraphs, which the paramount importance of the subject has induced me to extend far
beyond my original intention, the principal measure for
preserving the native population—indispensable even to
the white colonist as the only means of supplying him
with labourers—appears to be the elevation of the
female character. Now, there are only twro instruments
by which this elevation can possibly be effected, Christianity and public opinion,—the attempt^ such as has
been made, to enlist pecuniary penalties in so sacred a
cause, involving not merely a blunder but a crime.
In a climate which ripens girls of eight or nine into
womanhood, how cruel, how preposterous, how futile, to
expect from the terrors of the law any other fruits than
the ingrafting of hypocrisy on licentiousness, the stifling
of evidence by such means as may almost be said to
anticipate puberty by barrenness ! But the penal regulations against that intercourse between the sexes, which
has been so common that chastity has no name in the language, are, in themselves, as repugnant to the spirit of
Christianity as they are, in their consequences just mentioned, subversive of the influence of public opinion.
Considering the gross ignorance of the people, there can
be but little doubt that the practice of exacting money
for offences which Christianity alone has, in their notions, created and defined, has the same practical tendency as that system of indulgences which Luther
reprobated; in a word, the seventh commandant and
its human sanctions are doubtless blended together by
the islanders into something very different from the
peremptory simplicity  and conscious  dignity  of the
Divine command. " Thou shalt not commit adultery—
at least without paying dozen so many pieces of silver"—
is a precept which, whether viewed as a license or as a
threat, degrades religion, without even the poor pretext of rendering it popular. This desecration of the
decalogue, strange to say, was virtually the work of the
earlier missionaries, however ingeniously they played
the part of special pleaders in refuting the accusation.
If they did not frame the absurd laws in question, they
sanctioned them when framed; if they did not dictate
the words, they inculcated the principles; if they did
not mould the letter, they suggested the spirit. The
sooner the missionaries get rid of such doubtful aids, so
much the better for the cause to which they are, I firmly
believe, most zealously devoted; and, even without reference to religion, they ought, on the mere score of
morality, to discountenance a penal system, in spite of
which, or, as many assert, in consequence of which,
infanticide, at least in the same proportion in which it
may itself have been diminished, has been succeeded by
that surer mode of cheating the treasury which, in destroying the life of one child, prevents the birth of
others by undermining the mother's constitution.
If it be true—and it appears to be undeniably so—
that the depopulation of the group is mainly to be imputed to physical privations acting on moral depravity,
the enforcing of the seventh commandment by means of
extortion could hardly fail to aggravate the evil which
it pretended to remedy. With respect to moral depravity, the law, as we have seen, has rather altered its
direction than its essence ;   while, with regard to phy- 22
sical privations, it exposes, at a moderate computation,
more than half the islanders of either sex to the chance
of paying, in a month, as many fines as may be equivalent in amount to the taxes of a year. Instead of thus
embittering the malady, which is eating its way into
the very existence of the people, let the missionaries
weary their zeal in kindling the flame of pure and un-
defiled religion in the female heart; in humanizing, by
means of the gospel, the dispositions of those who may
be said, in a subordinate sense, to control the issues of
national life and death. If many of the transgressors
are too young to be permanently affected by merely
spiritual considerations, let the women of maturer age
be taught to bring to bear on youthful females in gene-
ral, and on their own daughters in particular, the influence of education and example. In a word, let the
reign of terror pass away; and let " persuasion do the
work of fear."
On this point, the past experience of the mission is
full of hope for the future. Though the women, as
being, of course, the grand agents in the systematic
work of quenching infant lives, are naturally more
callous and obdurate than the men, yet they have exhibited far brighter and more numerous proofs of that
change of heart, which is the single end and aim of
pure Christianity. To say nothing of such female
chiefs as possessed political power, inasmuch as their
religious zeal was, more or less, liable to the suspicion
of being a political instrument, Kekupuohe, who, in
Cook's days, was one of the wives of the King of
Hawaii, and  who was subsequently made captive by
mumsm&z&m* ROUND THE WORLD.
Kamehameha, evinced the sincerity of her conversion,
which took place in 1828, by learning to read, under
the weight of more than fourscore years, and by inditing hymns in honour of the God of her old age. I
subjoin a version of her ode on the creation :—
God breathed into the empty space,
And widely spread his power forth—
The spirit flying, hovered o'er:
His power grasped the moveable—it was fast;
The earth became embodied,
The islands also rose.
God made this wide, extended heaven;
He made the heavens long, long ago;
He dwelt alone, Jehovah by himself—
The Spirit with him.
He fixed the Sun his place,
But the islands moved, moved the islands,
With sudden, noiseless, silent speed:
We see not his skilful work—   I
God is the great support that holds the earth.
Perhaps as good a specimen of the native tongue as
I can produce is to be found in the following effusion-
of the venerable poetess just mentioned :—
Ahiai no o ikea ka mea nani,
He mea kupanaha, he hemolele wale no,
He mohala ka nani, he mae ole ke ano;
He hao ke kumu, he miliohe, he hookuhi:
Hookahi no kumu waina maoli, O ka haku.
O ka lala e piliana ia ia, ua hua ia,
Ua hua hoi ka hua, he maikai
Malaila ke ano e akaka ai, 24
O ka lala e hookamakamani ana eoki aku,
O luuluu hewa ke kumii,
O kaumaha hewa wale hoi ia ia.
Once only hath that appeared which is glorious—
It is wonderful, it is altogether holy;
It is a blooming glory; its nature is unwithering;
Rare is its stock, most singular, unrivalled—
One only true vine—it is the Lord.
The branch that adheres to it becomes fruitful—
The fruit comes forth fruit; it is good fruit—
Whence its character is clearly made known.
Let the branch merely making fair show be cut off,
Lest the stock should be injuriously encumbered,
Lest it be also by it wrongfully burdened.
The characteristic feature of these verses, and, in
fact, of all the poetry and prose in the language, is a
childish taste for the repeating of the same thought in
nearly the same words — a taste which appears, moreover, to have exercised a powerful influence over the
forms of very many individual words. Thus palapala,
books; lumeelumee, to shampoo ; mukeemukee, lore ;
loulou, a trial of strength by hooking the fingers;
kulakulai, wrestling in the sea; honuhonu, swimming
with the hands alone. Whether the halves of these
double words are generally significant themselves, or
whether, in such cases, the wholes generally derive their
meaning from the parts, I cannot say—my only elements of knowledge in the matter being, that, while
moku is an island, or a ship, or a canoe, mokumoku is
pugilism; that, while la is the sun, lala is a branch ;
and that, while kamehameha is the lonely one, kameha- ROUND THE WORLD.
mala is the shade of the lonely one. Portions of words,
too, often present similar repetitions ;—thus, Honolulu,
and several instances in the foregoing hymn.
Perhaps this immediate recurrence of the same sounds
may be partly owing to the poverty of the alphabet,
which contains only twelve letters—a, e, i, o, u, h, k or
t, 1 or r, m, n, p, w; the vowels being sounded, not as
in the English, but as in the Italian ; while it may also
be, in some measure, ascribed to the paucity of combinations, arising from the inadmissibility of two consonants in succession, and from the necessity of terminating every word with a vowel.
The various peculiarities of this last paragraph, some
of which have been noticed under a former head, may
be best illustrated by the native forms of such European
words as have been adopted into the language. Thus,
hymn, himeni; Britain, Beritane; pray,pule; school,
kula ; in addition to others already mentioned, such as
fashion, pakena; missionary, mikaneri; and consul,
konakele. Though these examples are sufficient to
show how glibly the alleged prevalence, as formerly
noticed, of consonants in much of the Malayan tongue
may have been softened down, yet others, of a more
decisive character, may be cited with more particular
reference to that point. Thus, England has become
Enelani, the proportion of consonants being diminished
more than threefold ; and French has been disguised
into Pulani, the proportion of consonants being diminished precisely fivefold.
If foreign words were largely incorporated, different
originals would inevitably produce confusion, by running
into one and the same version.    Of this possibility, in OVERLAND JOURNEY
fact, an amusing instance has already actually occurred.
Brandy, as well as French, has been legitmately rendered
into pulani; so that French brandy, by the by, would
be characteristically expressed, on the principle of repetition, by Pulani pulani. Now, brandy and Catholicism,
known as the French religion, or pule Pulani, happened
to be forced on the islands by a ship of war on one and
the same occasion; and the missionaries, who were as
hostile to the one as to the other, were not a little delighted to find that popery and intemperence were one
and the same thing in the mouths of the people.
Considering the harlequin-like transmutations of
adopted words, and considering also the mutual convertibility of k and t, and of / and r, an inexhaustible
field is laid open for the speculations of any curious linguist. Even without looking below the surface, several
obvious resemblances between the Hawaiian on the one
hand, and the Latin and the Greek on the other, have
been suggested to me. Thus, mouna, a mountain, from
mons; pari, a wall-like precipice, from paries; hala, a
house, from aula; pono, good, from bonus: and thus, also,
mele, a song, from jueXoc ; aroha, love, from epaw; arii,
a war-chief, from Apr?c; pili, close-adhering as a friend,
from OtXew; Pele, goddess of the great volcano, from
ttvq, precisely in the same way as AroraaKELE, from consul;
ua, rain from vu); and rani, the heavens, from ovpavoq.
One of these eleven examples, namely, hula, may perhaps
be more directly derived from our vernacular hall, while
to the same Teutonic origin may also be referred kai or
tai, the sea, from sea, and mahina, the moon, from moon,
a term which, besides being traceable eastward in some
of the oriental languages, occurs also, with the correla-
pppjcwwaw Ta^f:wt»j^a:'csm^i"rt^rgi,i^fc^jTF"rayTi ROUND THE WORLD.
tive signification of month, in the Greek p^v, and the
Latin mensis.
To return to the general characteristics of the language, the indistinctness and confusion which arise from
the scantiness of its elements, and its consequent repetition of the same sounds, are considerably aggravated
by the copiousness of the vocabulary,—a copiousness
which is said to have been, in a great measure, caused
by the pride and policy of the chiefs, who habitually
invented new words for their own peculiar use, and constantly replaced them, as soon as they became familiar
to the people, with other novelties of the same kind.
Under all these circumstances, to say nothing of the intricacy and precision of the grammar, a foreigner can
never hope entirely to master the tongue; and even the
missionaries, in spite of all their industry and zeal, often
find their ears at fault, more particularly when the
natives, as is their custom in cracking their jokes at
the expense of strangers, chant their barely articulate
strings of vowels in a quick and monotonous strain. As
to the mercantile residents, they are sometimes mortified
to find their most elegant Hawaiian received by the
natives as pure English. Even among themselves, the
natives, I apprehend, must experience an occasional difficulty in understanding each other; for, to take as an
instance a word containing both the indefinite consonants, one person may say kalo, another karo, a third
talo, and a fourth taro, while a fifth and a sixth may
straddle the fence, as Jonathan says, so nicely between
k and t, and between I and r, as to set all civilized orthography at defiance. Hence the various forms of
almost every native name as put into shape by voyagers 28
and others, such as Titeree and Kahekili, Timoree and
Kaumualii, Terenoui and Kealiihonui. The missionaries indeed have introduced something like a uniform
standard into their printed books, preferring k to t, and
I to r; but most of the natives, if they can be supposed
to aim at this standard at all, resemble, in their efforts,
so many prattling children of two years of age.
With respect to the formation of compounds, the
Hawaiian appears to be nearly as flexible as the Greek,
a property of which the names of the chiefs furnish many
apposite examples. Thus, keopuoiani, the gathering of
the heavens; kapiolani, the captive of heaven; kaahu-
manu, the feather mantle; kalakua, the way of the gods;
Lealeahoka, the necklace of stars; kamehamalu, the
shade of the lonely one. By the by, kamehameha, of
which the last-mentioned example is a compound, suggests a curious coincidence between the name and the
destiny of the great king of the islands. It may have
been applied to him on account of some peculiarity in
his condition, such as his being an only child, or an only
surviving child,—a sense in which, unfortunately at the
present time, the group contains many a " lonely one;"
but had not the name been recorded as far back as the
days of Cook, it might have been supposed to have been
assumed, in consequence of his conquests, to embody
the fact that he was monarch, or sole ruler, of all he
surveyed; that he had raised himself above all equality,
that he stood alone in his own little world. In a better
sense, too, than that of warlike renown or political supremacy, Kamehameha was " the lonely one" of his
country, having, as we have already seen, been the
single savage of the group, who, in his intercourse with ROUND THE WORLD.
strangers, abjured the falsehood, the treachery, and the
cruelty of his race. If any individual be disposed to
charge me with too frequently dwelling on the merits of
this gallant and sagacious barbarian, let him first reflect
how few members of civilized society overcome, or attempt to overcome, the prejudices, whether political or
religious, of early education.
To return to the language: it may, on the whole, be
considered as pleasing and agreeable to the ear after a
time, though at first it sounds childish, indistinct, and
insipid. It lacks, as a matter of course, every thing
like force or expression ; and though the natives, both
men and women, are fond of " speechifying," and even
of preaching, yet they are by no means to be compared
as orators with the aborigines of North America. While
the'natives of the continent, more particularly on the
east side of the mountains, pour forth their very hearts
in impetuous torrents of natural eloquence, the islanders
may be said rather to chatter with their lips; and while
the former are so famous for the boldness of their metaphors, the latter, even in their attempts at poetry,
speak sober prose, without knowing it, from beginning
to end. In short, the language is not capable of reaching the lofty strain of the Blackfeet, the Crees, or the
Saulteaux, but flows on in a mellifluous feebleness,
which, though it never offends the ear, always leaves it
But the Hawaiian is no longer the exclusive language
of the natives. English is daily becoming more familiar to them, being partly acquired in conversation, and
partly taught in schools.    It is, in fact, destined, ere OVERLAND JOURNEY
long, to be the vernacular tongue of the group. It
must advance as civilization advances, and the more
rapidly the better; for nothing else is so likely to promote that amalgamation of the European and Polynesian races, which can alone prevent the aborigines, if
they are at all rescued from the decay that threatens
them, from sinking into the condition of hewers of
wood and drawers of water.
At first, perhaps, the missionaries could not avoid
adopting the Hawaiian language; but, in their exclusive
use of it, they have, in the opinion of most of the
foreign residents, done more harm than good. In the
almost utter absence of native literature, the missionaries have operated on the national mind only through
the medium of laborious and expensive translations,—a
system which has, doubtless, had this recommendation
in their eyes, that it enabled them to exercise a censorship, such as neither pope nor emperor ever exercised, over the studies of their neophytes. Whether
they have ever abused this power, either in politics or
in religion, I at present offer no opinion; but its mere
existence assimilates the Protestantism of the Sandwich
Islands, at least in kind if not in degree, to that very
Catholicism of California, which the missionaries of the
group are so ready to decry,—the proselytes, in either
case, being subject to a tutelage, which does not even
profess to train them to think for themselves. But it
is not the studies only of the islanders that have been
placed under clerical censorship,—their food, their customs, their amusements, &c, having all shared the
same fate. ROUND THE WORLD.
Under the old heathenism of the islands, the law of
eating was a most complex and important affair. To
say nothing of occasional and temporary prohibitions,
it reserved the best of every thing for the chiefs, as
distinguished from the people—and for the males, as
distinguished from the females; and it, moreover, extended the privileges of its favourites to the very places
where they ate. Of the law in question, every violation
was a capital crime. It was death for a commoner to
drink awa, or for a woman to taste a cocoa-nut; it was
death for a serf to intrude on the banquet of his lord,
or for a wife to enter her husband's dining-room. A
system which thus proscribed females, in a country
where they were as competent as males to be chiefs in
their own right, could not long withstand the light of
civilization. Accordingly, soon after the discovery, the
taboos in question began to be relaxed and slighted,
families gradually presumed to take their meals together, and women plucked up courage to nibble at
cocoa-nuts. Still the law remained in force, for Kamehameha could not think of deserting, in his old age, the
gods who had crowned his youth with victory; and so
late as 1819, the last year of his reign, a woman was
actually put to death for invading the sanctity of her
husband's eating-house. In the very first year, however,
after his death, the taboos on eating were abolished,
chiefly through the instrumentality, as might have been
expected, of a female chief. Kaahumanu, the conqueror's favourite wife, having been left as a kind of
guardian or co-regent of Liho Liho, gave the young 32
king no peace till he annulled the religion of his fathers,
by publicly eating with his queens, the rickety machine of the national idolatry falling to pieces on the
removal of a single peg.
Practically, however, the common people did not find
that food was free; for, though superstition was no
longer the pretext, yet they were still stinted and
starved as before by the tyranny of their chiefs. In
process of time, moreover, a new taboo was invented by
the missionaries, and that, too, on grounds almost as
absurd and untenable as those on which the old taboo
had rested. Laying down religious rules, of which the
inspired volume knew as little as it knew of the traditions of Catholicism, which they delighted to revile,
the earlier missionaries " denounced" coffee, put a
stopper on tobacco, and carried on a holy war against
cooking on Sunday, and against all the aiders and
abettors of the same. Such arbitrary doctrines were,
of course, set at nought by the foreign residents. But
the police, who were not allowed, like the cooks and
scullions, to enjoy a day of rest, were sometimes too
vigilant for the white law-breakers; and, on one occasion, the British Consul found, on his return from
church, that the enemy had seized and confiscated every
thing that was guilty of being hot in his kitchen. Still,
public opinion and common sense triumphed, at last, in
favour of folks of every colour.
The principal food of the lower class of the population—and, in fact, the favourite food of all classes—
is poi, which deserves especial notice, as exacting from
the natives, in its preparation, a degree of labour, attention, and diligence, which would alone entitle them to
; &s**MSEM&*imMmw^^icmw* ROUND THE WORLD.
be reckoned as industrious. It is a sort of paste made
from the root of the kalo (arum esculentum), a water-
plant cultivated to a great extent throughout all the
islands. The root in question much resembles the beet,
excepting that it is not red but brown. It is reared in
small enclosures, which, with great care and labour,
are embanked all round, and constantly covered with
six or eight inches of water; for, like rice, the kalo
will not flourish in dry land. To insure a regular
supply of the requisite element, streams are brought in
aqueducts from the hills, and subdivided into a variety
of tiny eanals ; while each canal feeds a certain number
of patches, communicating with each other by means of
sluices. On certain days, perhaps once or twice a
week, the sluices are opened, and the patches of the
system are overflowed, so that the water is prevented
from becoming stagnant; a precaution which, besides
its fertilizing effects, is necessary for warding off fevers,
and other maladies, in a climate so warm and so free
from storms. But, not contented with mere utility, the
natives, after all the labour of cultivation and irrigation, often contrive to render the patches in question
ornamental. In the neighbourhood of Honolulu, where
the kalo is grown to a great extent, the patches are
surrounded by a low wall, which is lined with various
shruhs and trees, such as the sugar-cane, the banana,
and the drooping pandanus, which thrive well in so
cool and moist a situation ; while the broad arrow-
headed leaves of the kalo are in themselves not un-
pleasing to the eye.
The kalo is much used by the foreign residents as a
substitute for potatoes, or rather for bread, being for
VOL. II. D 34
this purpose either boiled or fried. But, in this case, as
in most cases of the kind, the native method of proceeding is the best. A hole dug in the ground receives,
first, some red-hot stones; then a covering of leaves of
the plant; thirdly, the root in layers; fourthly, another covering of leaves; and, lastly, a sufficient quantity of earth to exclude the air and confine the steam.
After a few hours, your kalo is baked, and may either
be eaten whole, just as if fried or boiled, or elaborated
into poi. The preparation of this dish exacts fully as
much care and toil as the growth of the raw material.
After being cooked in the way just described, the root
is beaten into a paste with such an expenditure of
labour, that the task is always assigned to the men.
This paste, which is of a bluish colour, is invariably put
aside to ferment. When it has become sour, it is then
fit for use; and then to see the natives eat it, or to
hear them speak of it, one cannot but conclude that, in
their estimation, it is the greatest luxury in the world.
The passion for poi pervades all classes, from the kino*
downwards; and the chiefs make no secret of the fact,
that, after dining with foreigners on the collected dain*
ties of both hemispheres, they take a little poi at home,
by way, as they express it, of filling up the corners.
Nor is the taste for this delicacy altogether peculiar to
the natives. Though white papas and mammas rather
frown upon it, as something naughty and barbarous,
yet white masters and misses are generally wayward
enough to exhibit an extraordinary love for the forbidden fruit, wherever and whenever it falls in their
At regular meals, however, poi is never eaten alone,
SffiaaiMffiaaig ROUND THE WORLD.
at least when the party interested can afford any addition. Happy as an emperor is he, who can flank his gourd
of poi with a bone of pork. Squatting himself between
the two candidates for his favour with as much glee as
if the whole of the animal and vegetable kingdoms
were his private property, he seizes the bone with one
hand, and makes ready the other for an attack on the
gourd. With a dexterity which ought to put civilization, with all its clumsy equipage of knives and spoons,
to the blush, our enviable friend bites off the smallest
possible flavour of the pork, and then, plunging two
fingers into the poi, juggles, as it were, into his mouth,
by means of a knowing jerk of the wrist, as much sour
paste as would make three or four spoonfuls, even for
the hungriest European. Another bite and another
gulp ; and | again, again, again, and the havoc does not
slack," till the performer is constrained by dire necessity to desist for want of room, and to resign himself,
like the boa-constrictor, after dining on a bullock, into
the arms of Morpheus.
But poi and pork are not the only food of the natives. Of vegetables and fruits, there are yams, sweet
potatoes, sugar-cane, cocoa-nuts, bananas, &c.; of these
the more palatable are devoured in great quantities, by
those who can get them, between meals, and appear, in
fact, to go for nothing in the grand business of cramming. Then, of the creatures of the deep, there are
the turtle, the dolphin, the flying-fish, the mullet, the
rock-cod, the bonetta, the snapper, the crayfish, the
pearl-oyster, the shark, &c. These the natives prefer in
a raw state, on the ground that they lose their flavour
in cooking, considering it as the richest possible treat,
d 2
Pi lmmmjklsmml
when, on their aquatic excursions, to haul a fish from
the water, and literally eat it to death; but, as to ourselves, we profited to the utmost by McIntyre's culinary talents, feasting almost constantly on as much
turtle as would have made a holiday for the whole court
of aldermen. Like the cultivation and preparation of
the kalo, the procuring of an adequate supply of fish
has tended to train the people to habits of industry,
the smaller kinds being kept near the villages in ponds
constructed and protected with great diligence and ingenuity. Like the kalo patches, these artificial enclosures are small, being separated from each other by
embankments, and supplied with water from a running
stream. Towards Waikiki, the road winds, for nearly a
mile, among the remains of fish-ponds, now neglected
and dilapidated ; but, though there abandoned, yet such
works are still maintained at Honolulu, regularly furnishing its market with fresh-water mullet. In addition
to vegetables, fruits, and fish, there are goats'-flesh,
dog, hog, poultry, and beef,—the beef of Kauai, according to Sir Edward Belcher, being superior to any thing
of the kind that he had seen out of England.
As Honolulu contains, of course, far more consumers
than producers, its necessary wants are supplied from
the neighbourhood in a way to be hereafter noticed.
The ordinary prices may be quoted as follows :—
Beef .
Pork .
Sugar .
3^. to 4d. per ft>.
5d. to 6d.
1 d. to 2d.
2d. to 2\d.
Fowls    .     .    is. each.
Turkeys 2s. to 4s.    „
Salted salmon 50s. per barrel.
Flour 60s. per 200 lbs.
Fish variable, but always moderate.
Over and above what may be considered as neces-
l^mwi^trwi6r^miaa ROUND THE WORLD.
saries for the table, the group in general, and Honolulu in particular, is supplied, in an eminent degree,
with nearly all the luxuries of every clime. At the
feasts of the foreign residents, champagne and claret
flow with lavish hospitality, while the lighter and rarer
viands of every name are brought direct from the
richest countries on the globe,—from England and
France, from the United States and Mexico, from Peru
and Chili, from India and China. In fact, such sump-
tuousness of living as we experienced, day after day,
from our numerous friends, is perhaps not to be found
any where out of London, and even there is seldom
found in all its unadulterated genuineness.
Nor are the principal natives of Honolulu far behind
the respectable foreigners in this matter. In proof of
their advance in material civilization, let me contrast an
instance of royal gastronomy, recorded by the Rev.
Mr. Stewart twenty years ago, with an evening in my
own banqueting experience, spent at Governor Keku-
Having visited Liho Liho along with Mrs. Stewart,
the journalist thus proceeds : " Pauahi, the only one of
his queens who had accompanied him from Oahu, was
seated, a la Turc, on the ground, with a large wooden
tray in her lap. Upon this, a monstrous cuttle-fish had
just been placed, fresh from the sea, and in all its life
and vigour. The queen had taken it up with both
hands, and brought its body to her mouth; and, by a
single application of her teeth, the black juices and
blood with which it was filled gushed over her face and
neck, while the long sucking arms of the fish, in the
convulsive paroxysm of the operation, were twisting and
t> *
writhing about her head like the snaky hairs of a
dusa. Occupied as both hands and mouth were, she
could only give us the salutation of a nod. It was the
first time either of us had ever seen her majesty; and we
soon took our departure, leaving her, as we found her,
in the full enjoyment of the luxurious luncheon."
Now for Kekuanaoa's supper. We were received by
the Governor in his hall of justice, an apartment large
enough for the church of a considerable parish, being
sixty feet long, thirty broad, and about thirty-five or
forty feet high, to the ridge pole of the roof. We there
found assembled to meet us, Dr. Judd, surgeon of the
missionary body, and three native chiefs, Paki, Kealiia-
honui, and Kanaina; the first two of the three, as well
as his Excellency himself, being remarkably tall and
handsome men. In his youth, Kealiiahonui was, according to the Rev. Mr. Stewart, a perfect model of manly
beauty. He is son of Kaumualii, the last king of Kauai,
who was, in mind as well as body, one of the finest specimens of the race, and died in captivity at the court of
Liho Liho. Kealiiahonui and his father, after the loss of
their dominions, enjoyed the honour of being joint husbands of Queen Dowager Kaahumanu, already mentioned as co-regent of the kingdom, after her first lord's
death ; polygamy and incest powerfully aiding, in this
case as in many other cases, the policy of engrafting
every rival into the dominant family of Kamehameha.
The remaining chief, Kanaina, was husband of the present co-regent, a sister of the king; but it was questionable how long he was to possess that high distinction, for he was said to have come to Honolulu to stand
his trial for being a gallant, gay Lothario, with a view
to his being divorced. But, as he was small, and for a
chief, utterly puny, there were not wanting charitable
souls who asserted that his royal consort did not much
regret the painful necessity of shaking off a partner
whose bulk and weight did so little to recommend him,
and who farther insinuated that she was merely making a
vacancy for the relict of Kinau, her sister and her predecessor in the co-regency, old Kekuanaoa himself.
The chiefs were all handsomely attired in the Windsor
uniform, their clothes fitting to a hair's breadth: so
particular, indeed, are the aristocracy in this respect,
that they have imported a tailor from England for their
own exclusive benefit. Supper being announced, the
chiefs, each taking one or two of our party by the arm,
conducted us across an open area to another apartment
of considerable size, built in the European fashion, and
handsomely furnished with tables, buffets, chairs, sofas,
&c, the whole, or nearly the whole, being of native
wood and native workmanship. The main table would
have done no discredit to a London mansion, covered,
as it was, with glass and plate, and lighted with elegant
lamps. The fare was very tempting. It consisted of
fruits of all kinds, sweetmeats, pastry, Chinese preserves, &c, with excellent tea and coffee; the latter,
which had been grown in Woahoo by the governor himself, being fully equal to Mocha. Our plates, by the
by, had been marked with our names, and we had been
told to take our seats accordingly, his Excellency sitting at one side among his guests. In fact, the whole
proceedings blended the most punctilious regard to
etiquette with the cordiality of natural politeness, beating out and out and over again all that we had seen in \L.MMmMmm i
California, in every respect, in room, in furniture, *»
equipage, in viands, in cookery, and in dress. Nor
were our native companions themselves so decidedly inferior as civilized* vanity might fancy. The chiefsy
especially our host, were men of excellent address; and,
as they spoke English enough to be understood, we
soon forgot that we were sipping our coffee in a country
which is deemed uncivilized, and among individuals who
are classed with savages.
There were but few incongruities in the course of the
evening's entertainment, such as could at all mar the
effect, excepting that Kanaina frequently inquired with
much solicitude, as if he felt that he must soon be in
the market for a new wife, whether or not we thought
his whiskers handsome; and excepting also that, on
going into an adjoining apartment, we caught a glimpse
of a pair of legs just disappearing beneath the hangings
of a fine bed. The legs in question some of our connoisseurs pronounced to be the property of a young
lady; but, be this as it may, Kekuanaoa is hardly ever,
to be seen, whether at home or abroad, whether under
a roof or in the open air, whether on the land or on the
water, without a bevy of beauties, who hang about him
like his shadow, without appearing to discharge any
very definite or important functions. After chatting a
good deal and smoking a few cigars, we took our leave,
highly gratified with the hospitality and courtesy of the
governor and his friends.
Nor was this our only specimen of the amelioration of
the social habits of the higher classes. During our
sojourn, the governor and his chiefs favoured us with
their company at dinner.    They conducted themselves >-
with ease and propriety, having now laid aside the
habits of intemperance in which their order was wont
to indulge, as also the peculiar style of conversation to
which such habits generally led. Formerly, it was a
critical business to entertain the grandees in presence
of ladies; for, as soon as the wine began to do its work,
they would gradually become more amatory in their
remarks than was either agreeable or safe.
To finish this subdivision of the chapter, the white
residents generally condescend to adopt the native
cookery to a certain extent in their picnic parties, characterizing, in fact, such convivialities by the name luau,
the vernacular word for the hole or pit which serves the
purpose of an oven. In these cases, the presiding genius
is a hog, or a dog, or a turkey, or a goat, or, peradventure, a fowl or a fish, baked in the manner already described with respect to the kalo, excepting that, in
addition to the hot stones in the pit, the creature has
two or three such articles in its belly. These parties,
however, are not so fashionable as they once were. Nor
is this much to be regretted; for the baked animal was
perhaps less of an attraction than its liquid trimmings;
and certain it is, the gentlemen, on their return, required
all their legs and eyes to steer clear of the cold baths
which beset them on every side in the shape of kalo
The dwellings of the natives are extremely neat and
clean, both internally and externally ; and, setting aside
the residences of some of the great people, they have
undergone  very  little change, excepting  perhaps  in s&samaBM
dimensions, since the days of the discovery. They are
constructed of a framework of bamboos, covered with
grass; and, as the roofs are high and pointed, and
the walls present no other opening than a single door,
the whole thing looks, from every side but one, more
like a hay-rick than anything else. The interior,
however, generally has a remarkably tidy appearance;
the regularity of the framework, and, still more strikingly,
of the knots with which the grass is made to keep its
place, have a pleasing and pretty effect, while the uniform brown of the structure looks cool and refreshing to
the eye.
The furniture is very simple, though generally sufficient for the wants of the inmates in such a climate.
The floor, being merely the bare earth, is covered with
straw mats, while low piles of the same articles, often
furnished with sheets, coverlets, and pillows, constitute
at once beds and bedsteads. The rest of the furniture
is comprised in a few gourds and calabashes for food
and water, and in a box or two, and a shelf for the
stowage of all their little odds and ends.
The houses are commonly separated into sleeping and
sitting compartments, by means of curtains hung across
from wall to wall; but every thing, whether exposed to
view or not, whether within the house itself or merely
within the surrounding enclosure, is scrupulously clean
and neat, presenting, in this respect, a wonderful contrast with the filth and confusion of most of the native
lodges of the continent. At whatever time of the day
we dropped into a house, we found no difference in any
of these particulars; there was never any unpleasant
smell about the premises, all the refuse of fish, vege-
F&^nii^BfcaaiS^^ ROUND THE WORLD.
tables, &c. being regularly carried to a distance. In
fact, so far as ray experience has gone, cleanliness may
be ranked among the -cardinal virtues of the Sandwich
Islanders; for the scorpions and centipedes, with which
some of the houses absolutely swarm, it appears to be
almost impossible to keep out or to get rid of. Musquitoes, though numerous, are not indigenous, having
been imported from California—one of the best authenticated instances on record of the emigration of these
tiny tormentors of man and beast.
From the foregoing description, the houses are in
themselves evidently light and portable; and, as they
have no more hold of the ground than a beehive, they
are, in point of fact, moved about from place to place,
as we had several opportunities of observing, with very
little trouble. To the end of a good hawser, which is
tied round the lower part of the mansion, there hang on
some twenty or thirty "kanakas,"—who, with one of their
wild, cheerful songs, whisk away the concern to its new
home as easily as if they were towing a ship through
the harbour to her moorings,—a most convenient and
economical receipt for the opening and widening of
streets and squares.
Some of the chiefs, as we have already seen in our
account of Kekuanaoa's feast, have had houses built
in the European fashion, the materials being, according
to circumstances, wood, or adobes, or limestone, or
coral. But, with their characteristic ingenuity in the
financial department, they have contrived to extract the
cost of most of these more solid edifices out of the
pockets of the public in general, and of their own dependants   in   particular.    Elsewhere, the  expense  of 44
house-warming falls on the man who is to enjoy the
edifice; but your Hawaiian house-warmer permits no
one, on any pretext, to cross the threshold of his new
snuggery for the first time, till his visitor has paid down
a tax, or gift, call it what you will, proportioned to his
rank and means. Considering how convenient, or how
agreeable, it is to be on visiting terms with a great
man, the contributions in question have often run up to
a respectable amount; and, perhaps, in places nearer
home, a leader of the fashionable world might build
himself a residence for nothing, and pocket money into
the bargain, if only he could or would sell the entree, on
the Hawaiian principle, to all comers.
In the days of heathenism, the ordinary apparel of
the natives of all classes was as primitive as possible,
being a malo of the scantiest conceivable dimensions
for the men, and a pau, or very, very shallow petticoat
for the women; and, in this state of nudity, the highest
chiefs of either sex used to board the foreign vessels
without ceremony or apology. Though the more
wealthy members of the community possessed, long
before the introduction of Christianity, plenty of fine
clothes, yet they regarded them as merely ornamental—
as something which was as little necessary on the score
of modesty as in point of comfort, as a kind of tatoo that
could be put on or taken off at pleasure.
The only other garment in general use,—and this did
not much mend the matter,—was the kapa, which was
merely a square piece of native cloth, tied by the two
upper corners in a large bow near the right shoulder, ROUND THE WORLD.
and hanging loosely behind half way down the legs,—a
facsimile, in short, excepting as to the fabric, of the
Spanish cloak of the days of Charles the First.
All these habiliments used to be made of the native
cloth,—the kapa, in fact, deriving its name from the
same; the process of manufacturing and colouring it I
shall describe hereafter. Among the chiefs, however,
feather cloaks of a more or less costly description were
in high esteem ; and perhaps nothing can give a better
idea at once of the pomp and power of the native
monarchs than the following description of the coronation-cloak of Kamehameha the Great. The description
in question is from the calculating pen of one of the
" His majesty Kauikeauli, the reigning king, has
still in his possession the mamo, or feather war-cloak,
of his father, the celebrated Kamehameha. It was not
completed until his reign, having occupied eight preceding ones in its fabrication. It is four feet in
length, with eleven feet and a half spread at the
bottom. Its groundwork is a coarse netting, and to
this the feathers, which are very small and exceedingly
delicate, are skilfully attached, overlapping each other,
and forming a perfectly smooth surface. The feathers
around the border are reverted, and the whole presents
a beautiful bright yellow colour, giving it the appearance of a mantle of gold. Indeed, it would be difficult
for despotism to manufacture a richer or more costly
garment for its proudest votary. Two feathers only
(such as are used wholly in its manufacture) are obtained
from under the wings of a rare species of bird inhabiting
Hawaii, which is caught alive with great care and toil.
Long poles, with an adhesive matter smeared upon
them and well baited, are placed near their haunts.
The bird alights upon it, and, unable to disengage itself
from the adhesive matter, is secured, the much-prized
feathers plucked, and the bird set at liberty. A piece of
nankeen, valued at five dollars and a half, was formerly
the price of five feathers of this kind. By this estimate,
the value of the cloak would equal that of the purest
diamonds in the several European regalia; and, excluding the price of the feathers, not less than a million
of dollars worth of labour was expended upon it at the
present rate of computing wages."
The native attire, as just described, having obviously
been quite incompatible with any moral or religious improvement, the missionaries and their wives, immediately
on their arrival, set about remedying the crying evil,
very properly adopting, in defiance of their instructions,
the principle that, in this instance at least, civilization
must precede Christianity; and they have been entirely
successful in introducing decency, if not modesty, among
the females. In Honolulu, the women look as if dressed
in the missionary uniform; for, though their gowns
differ in colour with every varied hue under the sun,
flaming yellow, pure white, bright red, and the like;
yet they are, to say nothing of the general sameness of
materials, all cast in one mould. They are, in fact,
something like bathing-wrappers, coming pretty high
on the shoulders, where they are finished off with a
fringe, and having sleeves loose and full, like those of a
clergyman's surplice, while the body and skirt, in one,
hang freely down to the ankles without being confined
at the waist.    This wrapper, however, constitutes the
'*mi»-MM)?Mwr~'Tm}*m ROUND THE WORLD.
whole of a woman's daily attire. The feet and ankles
are still left in a state of nature, excepting that the
tatoo, which, like the touching of noses, has become
obsolete for other purposes, continues to be sometimes
applied to the ankles, in the idea of making the feet look
smaller. The head, again, though not absolutely bare,
yet presents, according to the ancient fashion of the
Hawaiian beauties, nothing but wreaths of flowers and
leaves, and coronets of yellow and red feathers,—ornaments which are all elegant and becoming, and remind
one of the convivial costume of classical antiquity.
This description, however true it may be for six days
in the week, is totally inapplicable to Sunday. Shoes
and stockings, bonnets and parasols, are now in vogue,
while the sober chintz is perhaps thrown aside at home,
and sees the flaunting silk sail away to church in its
stead. Compared with the graceful simplicity of their
ordinary costume, all this finery on the part of these
brown belles forcibly reminds one of the sentiment,
that 1 beauty, when unadorned, is adorned the most,"—
a sentiment, by the by, which they at one time carried
to too literal an excess. Their badly-made shoes make
their feet look large and clumsy; their flashy bonnets,—
just fancy them of white satin, trimmed with lace,-—give
to their dark complexions a hideously sallow hue ; and
the attempt at fashion in the cut of their showy robes,
joined to the awkward consciousness of being all very
grand, completes the burlesque on the English and
American ladies of the place.
The men, however, have not proved to be so apt
pupils as the women,—the missionary civilizers perhaps
having, for very obvious reasons, taken greater pains in 48
the premises with the latter than with the former.
Many of the men still swear by the wisdom of their
ancestors; and it is no uncommon thing to see a finely-
dressed female walking arm in arm with a husband unencumbered in his person with any more of this world's
possessions than a malo of twelve inches by three. The
only constant addition to this scrap of an apology for
clothes is the wreath of flowers and leaves, which is
worn by the one sex as well as by the other,—a piece
of effeminacy which is not without its use, for the ornament in question is generally so arranged as to shade
the eyes from the sun. Nor must it be forgotten that
the graceful kapa, already described, still occasionally
forms part of the costume of almost every individual of
either sex.
But even among the men there are some exquisites,
being chiefly those who have at once enlarged their
notions, and saved a little money abroad. These fellows,
so long as their cash lasts, lounge and saunter all day in
the sunshine, habited in military surtouts, with frogs,
&c. all complete, in white trousers, which fit them like
their skins, in fashionable boots, in round hats, and in
kid gloves of some gay or delicate colour, with their
snowy wristbands turned back over their cuffs, the whole
dandy being finished off with cane and eye-glass. In
process of time, these bucks relapse, as a matter of
course, through all the stages of worse-for-the-wearish-
ness, shabbiness, and dilapidation, down to the malo,
with perhaps a garland on the head and a kapa on the
In fact, even among the higher classes, the abstract
idea of clothes still involves far more of the ornamental ROUND THE WORLD.
than of the useful.    Nor ought this to be a subject of
wonder.    So far as the climate is concerned, raiment is
rather a burden than a benefit to the natives ; and, as to
moral motives, they have hardly any influence with the
men, while they have probably less to do with the apparent decency of the women than a love of display.  But,
whatever may be the cause,  the notions of the chiefs,
even of the female chiefs, with regard to dress, are very
far from being decidedly utilitarian.    Witness the following ludicrous and  inconvenient  appropriation of a
whole web of woollen cloth to the wants of a single
lady, and that, too, in an atmosphere which would have
made a salamander comfortable.    At a festival celebrated'in 1823, to commemorate the death of Kamehameha, one of the dowager queens—the others, by the
by, being pretty well packed also,—sported seventy-two
yards of kerseymere, one half of it being scarlet and the
other orange; while, as the breadth was doubled on
itself, the whole quantity was equivalent to one hundred
and forty-four yards of single fold, something, I take it,
like the height of St. Peter's at Rome.    The only way,
of course, in which her majesty could haul in the slack,
was to have it wound, like thread on a reel, round her
portly waist; and when this process had gone on till
her arms were supported in a horizontal position, the
remainder was borne, as a train, by her admiring attendants.    This martyrdom was endured, within a month
of a tropical midsummer, throughout the  whole of a
tedious and ceremonious procession.    Perhaps in more
civilized countries, royalty, on occasions of state, is only
a gilded weariness both of flesh and spirit.
The inhabitants of a warm climate, as if in imitation
VOL. II. E ■"--""-•• -M-rTmfiri""^
of the birds, exhibit in their dress a greater variety of
colours than the denizens of colder regions. What a
difference in this respect between the variegated dwellers in Honolulu and the dingy citizens of London !
The women, presenting to the cloudless sun the countless
hues of the flower-garden, form a curiously suggestive
contrast with the deep brown of the almost naked men,
most of whom might be models for a sculptor ; while a
small sprinkling of many foreign costumes serves still
farther to heighten the beauty and interest of the scene.
In complexion, the natives look like a connecting
link between the red man and the negro, being darker
than the former, though still removed many degrees from
the sooty hue of the latter ; they exhibit perhaps about
the same tint as the Moors of the north of Africa. In regard to hair also, they occupy the same intermediate position : in all of them it is black; curling, or rather waving
and undulating in general, and being long and straight, like
the red man's, in some individuals. In feature, they are
rather Asiatic than otherwise; nose full without being
flat, face broad, eye black and bright. In form, they
are commonly handsome, strong, and well limbed, while,
in height, they are, in general, something above the
average standard of Europeans. On the whole, they are,
as a race, considerably above mediocrity, both in face
and in person. The women in particular are decidedly
pretty. They have a most lively expression of countenance, and are always smiling and attractive; and their
figures may even be admitted to be beautiful and femi-
»ine, seldom inclining, when young, either to corpulency
or to the opposite extreme, limbs and busts well formed,
and hands, feet, and ankles, small and delicate, while
their gait and carriage, though somewhat: peculiar, are
yet, on the whole, noble and commanding.
In the foregoing paragraph I have had chiefly the
common people in my eye, though all that I have said, excepting in point of size, is equally applicable to the higher
classes. The chiefs of either sex, as I have already had
occasion to mention with regard to the males, are, with
very few exceptions, remarkably tall and corpulenfe
For this striking peculiarity various reasons may be
suggested. Chiefs may originally have been of a superior
race,—a supposition which, considering the way in which
Polynesia must have been peopled, is not improbable in
itself; or they may have always selected the largest
women as their wives ; or they may themselves have
been elevated above their fellows from time to time on
account of their gigantic proportions. But, in addition
to any or all of these possibilities, one thing is certain,
that the easy and luxurious life of a chief has had very
considerable influence in the matter; he or she, as the
case may be, fares sumptuously every day, or rather
every hour, and takes little or no exercise, while the
constant habit of being shampooed after every regular
meal, and oftener if desirable or expedient, promotes
circulation and digestion without superinducing either
exhaustion or fatigue. Under this treatment the grandees
thrive regularly, and certainly without sacrificing or endangering health; and some of them, more particularly
Kuakini, otherwise known as John Adams, Governor of
Hawaii; and Kekauluohi, co-regent and wife of our
friend Kanaina, have become so unwieldy, that, though
E CZ ill
otherwise in perfect  health, they are  yet   unable  to
Whatever may be the cause or causes of the magnitude of the patricians, the effect itself so seldom fails to
be produced, that, beyond all doubt, bulk and rank are
almost indissolubly connected together in the popular
mind, the great in person being, without the help of a
play upon words, great also in power. Hence probably
the matrimonial difficulties of poor Kanaina; and hence
also the missionaries have certainly not augmented their
influence by eating little but vegetables and drinking
nothing but tea, till most of them are so meagre, gaunt,
and sallow, as to be immediately distinguished by their
looks from foreign laymen, whose religion rarely deters
them from enjoying good dinners.
To pass from the appearance of the natives to their
disposition. Of their domestic habits and feelings I
have already said enough in an earlier subdivision of this
chapter; and the less frequently that it is repeated, so
much the better.
The people, in spite of all that may be inferred to
the contrary from their early intercourse with foreigners,
are gentle and harmless; most of the outrages, which
followed the discovery, having been either prompted by
revenge for past wrongs, or enjoined by the cupidity of
ambitious and unprincipled chiefs. But, even if they
had been wantonly and wilfully treacherous and cruel
to strangers, the circumstances of their position would,
to a great extent, have accounted for their atrocities;
for the inhabitants of inconsiderable islands, who wrere
constantly exposed to invasion without the means of
retreat, could not fail to regard the most jealous defence 138^
of the definite boundary, which Nature had given them,
as a matter of self-preservation,—a principle which
goes far to explain the peculiar ferocity of the. Polynesians in particular, and of maritime savages in general.
In the hands of the chiefs, this principle could at any
time have excited the fury of the Hawaiians against the
most friendly visitors. In fact, the habit of obedience
is so powerful in the great mass of the population, that
by their rulers it may be turned at will either to good
or to evil; and it is partly by reason of this submissive
temper, which always makes them stand by their master
to the last, that they form a valuable addition to the
crews of whaling-vessels.
Nor is their courage less conspicuous than their fidelity. It is, in truth, above all suspicion; and of this
there cannot perhaps be a stronger proof, however indirect it may be, than the fact, that, in their wars, they
seldom or never had recourse to artifice or ambuscade.
They are, without exception, the most valiant of the
Polynesians, being perfect heroes, for instance, in comparison with the natives of the Society Islands; so that,
from the lesson lately received at Tahiti, the French
may be able to form some faint notion of what an
aggressor may expect from the Hawaiians, more particularly when backed by the inaccessible fastnesses of
their country. In short, with their fidelity and courage
combined, the Sandwich islanders, if officered like our
Eastern Sepoys, would, in my opinion, make the finest
soldiers of colour in the world.
But perhaps the industry of the natives is the quality
which promises to be most conducive to their civilization.    A habit, if not a love, of labour has been im- 54
91   !
planted aud cherished in them by a combination of
causes more or less peculiar to their condition, which
chiefly, if not wholly, resolve themselves into the niggardliness of nature and the despotism of government.
While many other Polynesian tribes almost realize the caricature of a copper-coloured gentleman lying on his back
under the branches of the bread-fruit, and doing nothing
but keep his mouth open to catch the ripe rolls as they
fall, the Hawaiians, as we have already had occasion to
notice more than once, are compelled by the necessities
of nature to earn their food by the sweat of their brow.
Witness the construction of their fish-ponds, the preparation of their poi, and the cultivation of their kalo, with
all its incidental toils of digging and embanking the beds,
of erecting and maintaining the aqueducts, of fixing and
regulating the sluices. So far as the kalo and poi are
concerned, there are some localities, Lahaina, for instance, in Mowee, in which the bread-fruit abounds,
while, with a little care and attention, it might be made
to grow in all parts of the group; but, whether it be that
this ready-made food be here of inferior quality, or that
the favourite dish of the natives has become indispensable to them, the bread-fruit is as little valued by the
Sandwich islanders, as the kalo, which is indigenous in
many parts of Polynesia, is valued by the indolent aborigines of the more southern groups.
Nor is the despotism of government less influential in
making the people work than the niggardliness of nature.
Till very recently, the commoners of this archipelago,
like the peasants of France before the Revolution, or of
Canada before the conquest, were taillables et coverables
a misericorde; or, to invent English for the exotic abo- ROUND THE WORLD.
mination, tawable and taskable at discretion, while they
were deterred alike from invasion and complaint by a
mixture of feudal servility and superstitious terror.
But, within the last year or two, certain laws, for their
share in which the missionaries deserve great credit,
have so far remedied this evil as to subject the amounts
and times of tasking and taxing to fixed rules; and
though the ascertained burdens are still too heavy and
too numerous* comprising work for the immediate chief,
work for the king, work for the public, rent for laud
and a poll-tax on both sexes, yet the restriction in question, if fairly carried into actual effect, will engender in
the serf the idea of property, and inspire him at once
with the hope and the desire of improving his physical
condition by the application of his physical energies.
Though, in many quarters of the group, an adequate
motive for exertion may not at present be felt, yet, in
the neighbourhood of Honolulu, the sustenance of several
thousands, who are exclusively consumers, constitutes
at once the proof and the recompense of the industry
of the adjacent cultivators.
In fact, the demand of the town affords an ample
market for the natives of the surrrounding country,
while there is certainly no reason for the buyers to murmur as to the amount or variety of the supply. In
addition to the resources of a stationary market, which
is usually well furnished with fish, meat, fruit, &c, the
smaller dealers go from house to house to vend their
wares ; the whole scene, which is quite unique, savouring of anything but indolence on the part of the rural
population. Early in the morning, a crowd of natives
may be seen flocking into Honolulu, all carrying some- m^stemea
ill mill
thing to sell. Most of them have large calabashes, suspended in a netting, at each end of a pole, which they
carry across one shoulder, the contents being all sorts
of small articles, kalo and poi, and fruits and vegetables,
and milk and eggs, and, what is the safest speculation
of all, water fresh from the cold atmosphere of the
mountains; some of them are loaded with bundles of
grass for the town-fed horses ; others carry a sucking-
pig in their arms, while the more substantial hog-
merchants make the adult grunters, always there as
well as elsewhere, on the verge of insurrection, trudge
along on their own pettitoes; others again import
ducks, and fowls, and geese, and turkeys, all alive, tied
by the legs to long poles, which are carried like the
poles with the calabashes ; while, last though not least,
a few individuals, of more airy and delicate sentiments,
hawk about various kinds of curiosities, such as mats,
shells, scorpions, &c.; but, above all, wreaths of bright
flowers, intertwined with their kindred leaves, for the
beaux and belles of the metropolis.
The sleepless avarice, which here as well as elsewhere has been one of the earliest results of the contact of civilization, leads its aid, too, to strengthen and
direct industry—all classes being, as is natural and excusable, ardent worshippers of money, as the one thing
needful, in their opinion, for procuring all that distinguishes civilization from barbarism. Several curious
instances may be mentioned. When Vancouver brought
cattle from California to colonize the islands, he found
that Kalaimoku's double canoe was alone capable of
taking them ashore; but he found also that Kalai-
moku, the highest and most enlightened councillor of ROUND THE WORLD.
the conqueror, and hence suruained William Pitt, would
not lend his double canoe for presenting to his country
a gift, which was to enrich it without pay. Again,
when one of the boats of Wilkes's squadron was upset
in the surf, a native promptly rescued one poor fellow
who could not save himself; but, instead of striking
out for the dry land, he shelved his dripping and shivering customer, on the upturned bottom of the yawl, to
take his choice between promising two dollars for his
life, or forthwith returning whence he came. Lastly,
during our own sojourn, the American residents took a
fancy to have Washington's birthday honoured by a
salute from the fort; and Kekuanaoa, instead of refusing on principle or of yielding with a good grace,
sold the compliment, after much higgling on both sides
about terms, at the rate of half a dollar a gun. I mention these anecdotes, not to reproach any one, but
merely to illustrate a characteristic feature in the disposition of partially improved savages—a disposition
which necessarily springs from the fact that material
civilization is more eagerly appreciated and more easily
acquired than moral.
The only bad point in the native character, always
excepting, of course, the besetting sin of licentiousness,
is a propensity to petty thieving, with the concomitant
vice of lying. But, in estimating the guilt of a savage's
dishonestv, we ouo-ht to take into account the com-
paratively irresistible force of the temptation. To him,
the rudest implements are as attractive as the most
precious jewels are to a European ; and I doubt much
whether a vessel with diamonds all about her deck and
cabin would be more sacred in the eyes of even the 58
most select visitors, in one of our own ports, than
hatchets, and knives, and nails used to be among the
savages of the South Sea. Moreover, it was with the
thefts as it was with the murders ; the outrages of both
descriptions were less the consequence of the offender's
own depravity than of his chief's commands; and, long
after the pillaging of vessels was abandoned, a professional pilferer was an ordinary appendage of a chief's
household, a regular hunter, in short, of all such waifs
and strays as might be useful or ornamental to the
establishment. But the extortion of the chiefs was
alone sufficient to make their vassals thieves. Knowing
neither stint nor shame, it coveted all that it saw, and
appropriated all that it coveted; and, if the serfs imitated those whom they reverenced, they could not be
otherwise than cheats and robbers. Nor had the helpless creatures, under so precarious a tenure of all the
fruits of their toil, that selfish motive for honesty, which
the possession of property seldom fails to inspire ; and
now that the limitation of thechief's rights and the vassal's
duties has enabled the commoners to have something
which they may really call their own, they will gradually
discover that the distinction between meum and tuum is
a point of law and morals in which they have a personal interest.
In addition to dishonesty, one might be led to infer,
from the rigour with which the missionaries wage war
against intemperance, that drunkenness was common
among the Hawaiians. Now, so far as my experience has
gone, the lower classes are, with very few exceptions
indeed, sober even beyond the standard of clerical self-
7 V
denial, drinking little but water, and rarely indulging
*sami£SMi»jmmMffwmrTmi» ROUND THE WORLD.
in the steaming beverage, " that cheers but not inebriates" their teachers* The chiefs, however, used not
only to take wines to excess, but also to quaff, at a
great rate, the liquor called awa, which nothing but
aristocracy was allowed to taste. This drink was made
from the root of the tea-tree, and was prepared in the
following very peculiar method. In the establishment
of each chief were one or two men, whose duty it was
to chew the root into a pulp, which they spat out into
a water-tight vessel. On this lixivium of filth and
poison the operators poured water enough to extract its
virtues; and, when the work of absorption was complete, the lord of the ascendant greedily swallowed an
infusion, which nothing but custom could have induced
even him to taste without loathing. The effects of the
thing were quite worthy of the process of its manufacture. Its immediate result was a stupifying intoxication, not unlike that caused by opium; wdiile, in its
ultimate consequences, it injured the sight by rendering
the eyes blood-shot, and produced on the skin a kind
of leprous appearance.
The practice of shampooing, to which I have already
alluded as a means of promoting circulation and digestion, is believed to be an infallible specific also for headache, and rheumatism, and other similar complaints;
its medicinal influence, at least with respect to the lords
of the creation, being doubtless heightened by the fact,
that the shampooers are almost invariably of the weaker
sex. The panacea in question, as one may easily suppose, assumes a variety of forms, inasmuch as the fair OVERLAND JOURNEY
dispenser of the dose not only knows exactly in what
proportions to combine the ordinary ingredients of
chafing, and squeezing, and kneading, but also, when
the malady appears to be deeply seated, tries to get
down to it by furrowing her customer's carcase pretty
forcibly with her elbows. The native name of shampooing, according to the printed standard, is tumee-
tumee; but the foreign residents, chiefly in order to
tease the missionaries who disapprove of some of the
modes of operation, generally express the objectionable
branches of the system by changing the pronunciation
of the word, as widely as possible, into rumee-rumee.
The practice is undeniably beneficial to the health and
development of the body. If nothing more, it is clearly
an easy substitute for exercise, or rather an ingenious
contrivance for shifting the toil and trouble of that
essential life-preserver to another person's shoulders.
The custom has doubtless been derived from Asia,
prevailing, as it does, in different parts of that continent, though not always in the form just described.
Cottrell, a late traveller in Siberia, mentions his having
experienced in his own person something of the same
kind at Omsk, and, with one exception, at Omsk only.
% By way," says he, " of digesting our luncheon, a
ceremony was performed, which, if we had not undergone the ordeal in a friend's house, in the vicinity of
Oranienbaum, with our lamented friend Prince Butera,
would have astonished us no little. A dozen soldiers
placed themselves in two files close to each other, and
took up each of the party, in turn, on their arms, and
tossed them in the air, catching them again on their
arms, and throwing them up again, as quickly as pos- HSl
sible, a considerable height. This operation is performed very expertly; the patient, who understands
the business, keeps his arms close to his sides, and his
legs stretched stiffly out, and feels no sort of inconvenience. It is exactly like being tossed in a blanket."
Now, as Omsk is the frontier town towards Thibet, it
may well be supposed to have borrowed its exclusive
discipline in question from its southern neighbours, who
again border on the countries, whence Polynesia has
most probably derived its population. The difference
between tossing and shampooing, in itself immaterial,
affects chiefly the active instruments in the business,
the one being easier than the other; and, in fact, we
accordingly find that, even on the continent of Asia,
the athletic exhibition of the north, as one advances to
the southward, has softened itself into something like
the same practice that prevails among the Sandwich
Another remarkable custom among the Hawaiians,
which, however, is not likely, I take it, to last long in
these more enlightened times, is their mode, evidently
Asiatic in its origin, of expressing grief for the death of
a superior. The mode in question is to knock out with
a mallet as many front teeth as the rank of the deceased may demand, or perhaps the mourner's remaining stock may warrant. To this most oppressive poll-
tax, chiefs and commoners are all alike subject; and,
accordingly, most of the chiefs of our acquaintance,
including our friend Kekuanaoa himself, bore in their
mouths negative marks of having, more or less ex-
tensively, paid the penalty of fashion—most, perhaps,
of the vacant lots, in the  case of  the older chiefs, 62
having* been intended to commemorate the death of
Kamehameha. In the good old days of polygamy, the
royal guardsmen had a hard time of it in this respect;
for the deaths of queens, and princes, and princesses
were so common as soon to disqualify the poor fellows
for mourning any more, and to send them forth, as no
longer fit for service, toothless into the world. Some
time ago, we had one of these mutilated veterans on the
Columbia, who, as if the honour fully atoned to him for
the loss, used to boast of having sacrificed his teeth in
the service of so renowned a conqueror as Kamehameha
the Great. Sometimes, though not so often, very loyal
people knocked out their eyes as well as their teeth.
This part of the business, however, was occasionally
managed in such a way as to compound matters between
the mourner and the deceased on terms highly advantageous to the former. Kalaimoku, or William Pitt,
for instance, exclaimed, on the death of his wife, that
he had lost an eye, and was thenceforward distinguished
as Once Blind—while, on the death of Kamehameha,
this Hawaiian Ulysses, having discarded his other eye
by means of a similar fiction, became Twice Blind for
the rest of his life.
Besides games of chance, some of which appear to be
similar to those played by the aborigines of the American continent, the Hawaiians are peculiarly fond of
such recreations as require strength or dexterity.
Among the recreations in question may be cited, as
strikingly illustrative of physical character, the following sharp contest between the muscles of one party and
the eyes of another. A fellow, whose arm is bare,
holds in \m closed hand a round stone, which he is to ROUND THE WORLD.
drop and leave under some one or other of three or four
small piles of shavings of wood or clippings of cloth,
passing his fist from pile to pile with inconceivable
quickness ; while his antagonist's business is to discover
under which of all the piles the round stone has actually been hidden. Beyond the mere chance of guessing right, the latter, of course, has no other means of
detecting the proceedings of the former than the movements of the muscles of the bare arm ; and hence the
struggle between the muscle and the eye, the muscle
running through a whole | pea and thimble rig" of
feints and stratagems, and the eye striving to distinguish the true action of depositing the stone from all
the deceptive varieties of motion and repose. As the
man with the stone may move his hand from pile to
pile as often as he likes, and actually does so with incredible ease and rapidity, he has, according to our
estimate of things, all the advantages in his favour;
and yet the watchfulness of his enemy is often too much
for him.
But the grand recreation of the natives is the constant habit of swimming. In fact, the Sandwich Islanders are all but amphibious, and seem to be as
much at home in the water as on the land) and, at all
times of the day, men, women, and children are sporting
about in the harbour, or even beyond the reef, with
shoals of sharks, perhaps, as their playfellows. These
voracious creatures, however, are far less likely to
meddle with the aborigines than with foreigners, not
that they prefer white meat to brown, but because they
have been taught by experience that one Hawaiian has
more of the Tartar in him than a score of Europeans. OVERLAND JOURNEY
There is scarcely an instance on record, in which a
native has suffered any serious injury from a shark. If,
at any time, the latter take the preliminary step of
turning over on his back to get a mouthful, the former
is sure at least to elude the attack by diving below the
monster; while, if he has a knife or any similar weapon, he seldom fails to destroy the enemy by carrying
the war into his interior.
To return to the swimming : it was part of our daily
amusement to watch the rapid and elegant evolutions of
the performers, more particularly of the ladies, who,
in the great majority of cases, excelled their lords and
masters in agility and science. Even in point of
strength and endurance, one woman, a short time before our arrival, had carried off the palm from her husband. The whole story is well worth telling, as illustrative of something better than toughness of muscle
or suppleness of limb.
A man and his wife, both Christians, were passengers
in a schooner, which foundered at a considerable distance from the land. All the natives on board promptly
took refuge in the sea; and the man in question, who
had just celebrated divine service in the ill-fated vessel,
called his fellows, some of them being converts as well
as himself, around him to offer up another tribute of
praise and supplication from the deep in which they
were struggling, to tarry, with a combination of courage and humility perhaps unequalled in the world's
history, in order deliberately to worship God in that
universal temple, under whose restless pavement the
speaker and most of his hearers were destined to find
their graves.     The man and his wife had each suc-
■*xi*mtsa*&i*i ROUND THE WORLD.
ceeded in procuring the support of a covered bucket by
way of buoy ; and away they struck with the rest for
Kahoolawe, finding themselves next morning alone in
7 o o
the ocean, after a whole afternoon and night of privation and toil. To aggravate their misfortunes, the
wife's bucket went to pieces soon after daylight, so that
she had to make the best of her way without assistance,
or relief; and, in the course of the afternoon, the man
became too weak to proceed, till his wife, to a certain
extent, restored his strength by shampooing him in the
water. They had now Kahoolawe in full view, after
having been about four-and-twenty hours on their
dreary voyage. In spite, however, of the cheering
sight, the man again fell into such a state of exhaustion,
that the woman took his bucket for herself, giving him,
at the same time, the hair of her head as a towing-line;
and, when even this exertion proved to be too much for
him, the faithful creature, after trying in vain to rouse
him to prayer, took his arms round her neck, holding
them together with one hand, and making with the other
for the shore. When a very trifling distance remained
to be accomplished, she discovered that he was dead,
and, dropping his corpse, reached the land before night,
having passed over upwards of twenty-five miles, during
an exposure of nearly thirty hours.
I have been thus particular in detailing this narrative
of hardihood and skill, of piety and affection, because it
harmonizes so exactly with my general plan of presenting, when possible, to the reader, the past and the
present, the old and the new, the savage and the
civilized, in one and the same view. In the skill and
hardihood,  we  recognise the children of nature and
I " ■Bum
barbarism;   in the affection and piety, the disciples of
civilization and Christianity.
In Honolulu, and most probably in the other towns
and villages of the group, the taste for promenading,
fostered, if not created, by the introduction of civilized
finery, has, to a certain extent, thrown nearly all other
amusements into the shade. Every afternoon—for all
work ceases about three o'clock — the main street presents a gay and pretty scene with the varieties of costume and degrees of nuditv such as I have described—
a scene which, unique enough in itself, is rendered still
move decidedly so by the circumstance, that many of
the ladies, as I have elsewhere hinted, carry about
adopted sucklings in the shape of pigs and puppies,
which, however, are destined to pay their little all for
their board by being baked, when fat, into holiday
dinners for their adoptive mammas.
In this promenading, certain days of the week take
the shine out of the others. For instance, Tuesday, as
everybody washes everything on Monday, brings out the
belles like so many new pins, with gowns as clean, and
smooth, and stiff, as starch, and irons, and soap, can
make them ; while the fair wearers, that all things may
be of a piece, generally embrace the same occcasion of
mounting their fresh wreaths and garlands. For these
reasons, Tuesday is a stranger's best opportunity for
obtaining a full and complete view of the beauties of
Honolulu, for, though never very prudish, yet they are
now peculiarly ready to appreciate and return the compliment of being "the observed of all observers. Saturday, again, has its own proper merit, inferior to Tuesday
in show and ceremony, but superior to it in variety and ROUND THE WORLD.
intensity of excitement. On this day, little or no work
is done; and all those who can get horses gallop about
from morning till dusk in the town and neighbourhood,
to the danger of such as are poor enough or unfashionable enough to walk. Saturday, in fact, is a kind of
carnival, whose duty it is to atone, by anticipation, to
the mass of the inhabitants for the pharisaical metho-
dism of the missionary's sabbath. But the reader, to
have a definite idea of all this walking and riding, ought
to be told, that the Hawaiians, who must speak or die,
never meet for any purpose, going to church, of course,
excepted, without indulging, perhaps all of them at
once, in a perpetual din of gossip and banter.
But the richest scene of amusement among the natives,
which we witnessed, was one highly characteristic of
those light-hearted creatures. A bridge and road were
to be made from the town, in the direction of the valley
of Nuannau. According to the law of the case, every
male adult turned out to lend a hand; even domestic
servants being liable either to work or to pay,—the
very labourers themselves, to say nothing of others,
making this unremunerated task the groundwork of all
sorts of fun and frolic. The troops mustered, as if for
a review; bands of music paraded about from morning
till night; and the wromen, all decked out in their best,
flitted about from spot to spot, jabbering and joking
all the while in their inarticulate jargon. But the
statutory labour itself was perhaps the most entertaining
part of the business. The men were divided into gangs
of forty, each set being sure to be constantly attended
by its full complement of shouting and giggling women;
and one whole gang might be seen running and laughing
f 2 ssam
with a log of wood on their shoulders, which four or five
men might have conveyed with ease, evidently succeeding to their own perfect satisfaction in converting the
toil into a pleasure. Every day used to close with
quite enough of dancing and singing; but this day of
hard duty ushered in an evening of more than ordinary
I have taken no notice of the native dances, for most,
if not all, of them are unfit to be noticed. They have
undergone very little change for the better since the
days of the early visitors; and, if they have been rendered less public through missionary zeal, they are unfortunately so much the less likely to be influenced by
the gradual formation of that popular opinion, by which
alone they can be abolished or improved.
The last particular which I shall mention under this
head, is one in which, at least in Honolulu, every
stranger, whether willing or unwilling, is obliged to
take the principal share. On his first arrival, the visitor
is followed through the streets by a crowd of men,
women, and children, who, without incommoding him
by actual pressure, are always ready to assist him in
any and every possible way, to pick up, for instance,
whatever he may drop, or to open gates, or to point out
the lions, or to explain all that may require explanation.
Meanwhile, he cannot help suspecting, that his self-
elected satellites are taking their hire out of him by
quizzing any little peculiarities that he may possess;
for he hears behind him volley after volley of laughter,
each one evidently produced by some excellent joke
that has preceded it. As nobody likes to be laughed at,
especially when he cannot enjoy the jest himself, the
victim resolves to escape from his tormentors by wearing
out their patience the next time that he calls at any
house; but, let him stay as long as he likes, or till he is
ashamed to stay any longer, he finds his volunteers
where he may have left them, waiting to greet his return with a cheerful welcome, and to repeat their kindly-
meant persecution. If he has a single drop of the milk
of human kindness in his own composition, he now, of
course, submits to the infliction with a good grace. OVERLAND JOURNEY
Navy — Army—Revenue —Government—Religion—Education-
Productions and Manufactures—Trade.
In regarding the Hawaiians not as individuals, but as
a community, I shall, to confine myself at present to the
most general distinctions, begin with government and
its incidents, then pass to education and religion, and
lastly conclude with trade and all that concerns it.
Before the days of Kamehameha, the only vessels of
war were canoes, such as are still in use for most purposes. These canoes, which are all, of course, seagoing
craft, convince one at the first glance that the natives
must be tolerably amphibious animals. They are usually
hollowed out of the trunk of a cocoa-nut tree, and are
generally so narrow as barely to allow a man to sit in
them on his knees. This rickety machine is kept in an
upright position only by the contrivance of an outrigger,
consisting of two pieces of wood of about ten feet in
length attached at right angles to one side of the canoe,
and joined at their outer extremities by another piece
of wood, which is, of course, parallel with the body of
the vessel; and this appendage, while it gives security ROUND THE WORLD.
by virtually increasing the breadth of beam, does not
sensibly impede the little bark's motion through the
water. But, outrigger and all, these ticklish skiffs not
unfrequently get capsized at sea; but, on such occasions,
the crew, who, of course, must have been pitched clean
out, soon set all to rights and start again, though generally with the loss of some of their goods and chattels.
The savages, however, did not fail to discover that union
was strength; for, by lashing together two such vessels
as have been just described, they produced a tertium quid
of twenty times their value.
These double canoes, formerly employed in war, and
still used by the chiefs, are capital sea-boats, Kamehameha having at one time contemplated the conquest of
Tahiti in reliance on a fleet consisting chiefly of them;
and it was probably in some such galleys that the
Tahitians first made their way, in days of yore, to colonize the Hawaiian group. In speed, as well as in
security, the double canoes are vastly superior to the
single. On a mast planted between their two parts,
they carry a large sail of triangular form, which may
either assist or relieve the paddles; and, as they are
made of the largest trees, which are reserved for the
purpose, they sometimes accommodate eighty or a
hundred men each, while every man, seated as he is, in
comparative ease and safety, can put forth all his attention and energy on his work.
After the discovery, canoes were gradually supplanted
for all great objects by ships, which were procured
sometimes by foul means, and sometimes by fair dealing,
till at last the subjugation of the whole archipelago
under  one ruler entirely  superseded the  use  of the ill iii i
a Will
smaller description of national craft. Thenceforward,
the navy consisted of decked vessels; and, though now
less powerful than it has been, yet it still musters a few
armed schooners of from twenty to a hundred tons,
which, manned and commanded almost entirely by
native seamen, are politically valuable in holding the
remoter dependencies to their allegiance, to say nothing
of their commercial utility in carrying provisions and
passengers from one island to another.
As a beginning of civilization, this navy, however
insignificant in modern eyes, is certainly superior to the
squadron with which Columbus discovered America, and
perhaps not inferior to that with which Drake left
England to circumnavigate the globe; and, to come
even to the present day, it is infinitely creditable to
the Hawaiians, when compared with our own. experience
of the " one and indivisible" navy of California, built
by foreigners, commanded, and partly manned by
foreigners; and, to crown all, confined to port till
victualled by foreigners.
Even previously to the days of the discovery, the
Hawaiians appear to have possessed a better notion of
military affairs than savage tribes in general possess.
They marshalled themselves in something like regular
lines and columns; they marched under the distinctive
banners, more or less splendid according to the rank of
the parties, of their respective chiefs; and, generally
disdaining, as I have already mentioned, the use of
snares and ambuscades, they, of course, delighted chiefly
in the pitched battle with its " clear field and no favour."
%a«fflffiaftKa^OTg?«fti ROUND THE WORLD.
Besides swords, clubs, bows, &c, which they had in
common with other savages, they were peculiarly expert
in the hurling of the spear, and miraculously so in the
avoiding of it, when hurled against themselves. To this
practice they were systematically trained; and even
now, after peace has continued nearly fifty years, and
civilization has substituted its own weapons for those of
barbarism, the officers of the fort, who were always
happy to entertain us with specimens of their native
warfare, perfectly astonished us with their dexterity in
the management of the spear.
One stood to be aimed at, while several others, at a
distance of about twenty paces, rapidly darted against
him the long spears of ancient times with such vigour
and certainty, that their comrade, who acted as their
common butt, could be saved by nothing but his own
coolness and agility. But he was apparently as much
at his ease as if he had been Gulliver among the Lilliputians ; some of the weapons he would send flying off
at an angle by touching them with his shoulder, or leg,
or arm ; others he would catch by the middle and hurl
back at the throwers, thus directly turning the tables
on the enemy; one or two he might, perhaps, clutch
between his arm and side ; and, at all events, even when
a special display of skill was impracticable, he would
still dodge the mischief by a slight inclination of his
body. In this apparently dangerous pastime, Kamehameha was rather fond of exposing his royal person ;
and, when urged to be more careful of his valuable life,
he replied, that it was as easy for him to avoid the
spears as it was for his antagonists to throw them.
The substitution of  civilized  arms  and   discipline, 74
i ii.ii
though gradual, has yet been complete, excepting that
one whole age of tranquillity, more particularly as it
happily promises to be succeeded by another age of the
same blessing, has, to a certain extent, degraded soldiering into a burlesque. Witness the training at the
fort, which we sometimes attended, apparently to the
great gratification of the chiefs. The officers, for the
most part, were well dressed, some even making an
attempt at uniform; but the men, in clothes, in accoutrements, in arms, in every thing, did certainly baffle
all classification. Tall fellows and short were ranked
and filed together with admirable perverseness; every
one was dressed, or not dressed, according to the state
of his wardrobe, or the whim of his fancv; some shoul-
dered broken muskets, and others wooden guns; some
again had only sticks, and others nothing at all. Still,
however, all of them went through their exercise with
much precision, marching in excellent time to the sound
of their drums and fifes.
But the richest part of the treat was the Hawaiian
English, in which the word of command was given.
At first, we could make nothing of our corrupted vernacular ; but, at last, happening one morning to stand
near the captain of a number of wooden guns, a handsome fellow, by the by, with a gold-laced cap, a handkerchief round his waist, and a cane, we were fortunate
enough to catch the sounds as they escaped, all tortured and dislocated, from his lips. A-a-tee-un! shouted
the officer; and clap went all the hands, while the
motley fellows drew themselves up, as one man, into the
attitude of attention. Cheear-a-ar ! the first division of
the sound being almost inaudible, and the second bear- ROUND THE WORLD.
ing away all the emphasis: and the men accordingly
shouldered their not very heavy firelocks. Petee-a-arf
came next in order, and each warrior presented the
same harmless engine which he had just previously
shouldered. Pee-ba-a-tee! crowned the climax; and the
men, after drawing imaginary bayonets with as much
solemnity as if they had been mesmerizing their hips,
fixed the same with such an air of business about them,
as entirely overthrew our gravity.
But, however ridiculous most of the details were,
the impression on the whole was favourable, as often as
we attended. The men, as a body, were strapping fellows, with that best of all uniforms, good looks and
fine figures; and, as to any other uniform, the day of
trial, when it comes, will find them, I take it, doing
their duty, and doing it well too, in their brown skins
and their malos.
These troops are merely militiamen, who, in consideration of being thus drilled two or three times a
week, are exempted from all other public labour; they
are, I apprehend, part of a general corps of national
defenders. But, in Honolulu, the government has at
command a more regular and permanent force, organized and trained to discharge the duties of a municipal
police. To this body much credit is due for the order
and regularity preserved in the town. Its services in
this matter are but seldom invoked during the day;
but, in the night, its measures are of the most prompt
and summary character, for every native who is found
in the streets after one of the guns of the fort has told
the lieges that it is half-past eight is clapped into
durance vile without ceremony, and fined next morning.
But the force in question is not less valuable in maintaining the discipline of the vessels in the harbour than
in securing the peace of the town. It cannot, indeed,
prevent the temporary evils of drunkenness and dissipation ; but it does effectually protect the ship against
the worst misfortune that can befall her in port, by
such a vigilance in recovering deserters, as is but seldom
evinced on more civilized stations.
In Honolulu, the militia and the police, taken together, amount to about six hundred men.
The fort, properly so called, is merely a large quadrangular building, surrounded by low stone walls. It
mounts a considerable number of guns; and when the
salute, which I have already mentioned, was sold and
delivered on Washington's birthday, one of the guns,
which had been shotted for the purpose by order of the
sagacious old Governor, sent its ball beyond the reef, as
a warning to all whom it might concern. In fact, the
fort, as I have already mentioned, must be silenced by
an enemy from the outer anchorage; for otherwise, a
hostile vessel, while towing, in a helpless condition, into
the chops of the harbour, would expose herself to a
heavy fire, which she could not return. Besides the
fort in question, a battery which has seen better days,
and still shows a few rusty cannons, commands the town
from a hill immediately behind it. This battery is said
to have under its immediate protection one of those
reserves of dollars, which the government is popularly
supposed to keep en cache in various parts of the country. In my opinion, the battery is just as likely to be
manned against an intruder by Kamehameha's ghost;
and probably the incredible fable never had any other ROUND THE WORLD.
foundation than the jealous custom, given up, however,
of late, of not allowing any person to visit the stronghold without being attended by a soldier.
His Hawaiian majesty's ways and means are drawn
from various sources and in various shapes, from every
possible source, in fact, and in every possible shape;
and the details, however unimportant in their direct
bearing on the resources of the government, are peculiarly worthy of consideration, as illustrative of the
condition of the people.
A poll-tax is levied on all and sundry, excepting old
people, and children under fourteen years of age, being
at the rate of a dollar for a man, of half a dollar for a
woman, of a quarter of a dollar for a boy, and of the
eighth of a dollar for a girl. Supposing the tables
which have been already quoted to present the average
proportion of ages and sexes in the whole population
of eighty-eight thousand, this branch of revenue would,
on a rough estimation, considerably exceed forty thousand dollars.
But an additional poll-tax, in the form of labour, is
exacted from all male adults. Every man is bound, if
required, to devote to public works six days in every
month of four weeks, being precisely one fourth part of
his whole time. From this liability even domestic
servants are not exempted. They must either leave
their duties for the time, or pay half a dollar for each
day's default. Of this system the white residents could
have but little reason to complain, if they enjoyed a legal
right of compounding for the year's burden; but they 78
possess no such privilege, being subject, on each and
every occasion, to the caprice of the authorities as to
the pecuniary composition for such indispensable attendants as they may be graciously permitted to keep at
home: moreover, this poll-tax, with an ingenuity worthy
of civilized financiers, is levied on the absent, and even
on the dead, no Kanaka being allowed to go abroad till
his employer has paid an equivalent for the statutory
labour likely to be lost to the community during the
whole term of his engagement. Reckoning the male
adults at twenty-eight thousand, this poll-tax is, of
course, equivalent to the labour of seven thousand able^
bodied men for a whole year; or, if turned into money
at the rate of composition mentioned in the following
paragraph, it must amount to two hundred and fifty-two
thousand dollars.
After all this fleecing, the poor creatures have earned
a claim to nothing more than air and light. The land
they must not meddle with, though the surface capable
of cultivation, even if estimated at only a sixth part of
the whole, contains at least twenty acres for every male
adult in the group. They have to pay not only for
the ground that they till, but even for the privilege of
tilling it; or, in other words, they are themselves saddled
with a third poll-tax, as cultivators of the soil, while
their possessions, in proportion to extent, are assessed
to a land-tax of apparently exorbitant amount. The
poll-tax in question is precisely another fourth part of
their whole time, being three days in the month for the
immediate proprietor, whether the king or a chief, and
three days in the month for his majesty, as lord paramount ; and this fourth part, though such is not the ROUND THE WORLD.
case with the other, may be commuted at the tenant's
option into the sum of nine dollars. This poll-tax,
therefore, cannot, as a whole, be reckoned at less than
two hundred thousand dollars, while the king's share of
the same, even supposing him not to be an immediate
proprietor at all, is exactly one half of the amount.
The land-tax, again, is payable in hogs of different
lengths. If the patch be large-—the largest not being
bigger than an ordinary garden—the animal must measure a fathom; if it be small, he is let off for a yard ;
and, if it be neither small nor large, he must hit the
golden mean of three cubits. But, as the length alone
of a hog, to say nothing of the brute's trick of stretching himself to serve his friend, is as vague a criterion of
merit as the length alone is of a sermon, weight has been
practically substituted for measurement at the rate of
a thousand pounds to three fathoms; and then, again,
to provide for the possibility of there being no hog fat
enough on the premises, the pork is valued at three
cents a pound, so as to make ten, five, and seven and a
half dollars, the respective equivalents of the three
lengths or weights of grunter. Taking the cultivators,
in. round numbers, at twenty thousand, and supposing
one and all of them to deal ouly in small patches and
yard hogs, the treasury must receive either about twelve
miles of pork, or precisely a lac of dollars, or something
between the two.
Of that portion of the royal revenue, or at least of
the king's income, which arises from his majesty's lands,
I am unable to ascertain or even to guess the amount.
The lands in question appear to be partly private property and partly public domain, though the distinction,
M 80
I dare say, is, in practice, almost entirely nominal. In
the public domain, comprising all the lands that do not
belong to individual owners, the king possesses a source
of revenue which is susceptible of indefinite improvement and extension. Already he derives an income
from the progeny of the cattle left by Vancouver, which,
besides being originally the property of Kamehameha,
have Ions: since been driven to the mountains, on ac-
count of their wildness and ferocity; and as their numbers are constantly increasing, while the demand for
them promises to increase in the same proportion, they
will ultimately yield a very profitable return for the
wildernesses which they occupy.
But it is by encouraging the immigration of foreign
settlers that his majesty must turn the best parts of his
public domain to advantageous account; and all that is
required by way of such encouragement is a liberal and
judicious system of leasing the soil, for the purposes of
extensive cultivation. But, unfortunately, such a system
was long unpalatable alike to Church and State. The
chiefs looked with jealousy on the whites, as being
likely at no distant day to supplant themselves; and
the missionaries, besides being secular enough in their
aspirations to cherish the supremacy of the chiefs as an
indispensable aid in the work of converting the natives,
regarded white laymen in general, and with some reason, too, founded on experience, as scoffers of much of
what they themselves deem morality and religion.
To return to the subject: we have seen that the
written laws, intended, as they are, to mitigate the
indefinite exactions of former times, deprive the nativei.
to speak generally, of one half of his time and of at ROUND THE WORLD.
least six dollars a year in money, or in money's worth;
that they tax his existence; that thev tax his labour;
«/ 7 tj 7
that they tax his property. But, as if all this was less
than enough, the laws in question have taxed some of his
actions, which are just as natural to him, and as innocent in his estimation, as eating and sleeping.
The conduct of the king and chiefs in this matter
ought not much to surprise us, inasmuch as, under the
old system of taboo, they used to impose all sorts of
arbitrary and absurd prohibitions for the compara*
tively unprofitable pleasure of sacrificing the bffenders to
the gods. But the missionaries ought to have known
To resume the fiscal view of the subject, this taxation of sins has this bad effect, that, in more ways
than one, it brings the administration of justice into
merited suspicion. As detection is a mere accident,
where concealment is so easy, the punishment of
offences, which nobody hesitates to commit for their
own sake, hardly establishes any greater certainty of
guilt than impunity itself; and, as the treasury shares
the proceeds with the informer, in the proportions of
seventy-five and twenty-five per cent., prosecutors and
judges are strongly suspected of a predisposition to
make the most of a case, without any very scrupulous
regard to law, or justice, or common sense.
In illustration of this determination to get money by
some means or other, many anecdotes have found a place
in my journal, which, however incredible in their details, serve to show what is in itself a great evil, the
general want of confidence in the working of this lucrative jurisprudence.
A cobbler and his wife quarrelled with a tailor and
his wife; from looks they came to words, and from
words  to  blows, and  then—what proved to  be  the
worst part of the business for them all—they came to
the governor, to try the grand cause of tailor versus
cobbler.    The plaintiff having failed  to make out his
charge  against   the  defendant,   his  excellency,   after
stating that, if the tailor had established his case, the
cobbler would have had to pay sixty dollars, consoled
himself for the disappointment by fining all the parties,
saving and excepting the plaintiff's wife, twenty dollars
Again: a foreign resident had*a nocturnal round at
© ©
fisticuffs with a Kanaka, who was too tipsy to be satisfied with his own share of the road. Two days afterwards, all the parties were summoned before the authorities, who, after a patient and thorough investigation
of merits and demerits, fined the combatants six dollars
each for the respective assaults, levying also on the
Kanaka two other similar sums for being drunk, and for
disturbing the neighbourhood; while, still farther to
help the good cause, they exacted ten dollars from each
of the four witnesses, very justly observing that, if they
had been quiet and dutiful subjects, they would not
have been in the streets at midnight.
To conclude: the annual proceeds of this branch of
the royal revenue are estimated at five thousand dollars
for Woahoo alone—the most productive, however, of
the islands in this respect, inasmuch as it contains a
larger proportion of whites, who are liable to this " poll-
tax " in common with the aborigines.
In   addition to these  taxes, which fall  almost ex- ROUND THE WORLD.
clusively on natives, there are still others, which, generally speaking, fall, at least primarily, on foreigners.
Certain occupations cannot be pursued without a
license, which, of course, costs money. A store, which
sells only by wholesale or by retail, pays twenty-five
dollars, while, if it sell in both ways, it must pay fifty ;
a victualling house is charged the same as a retail or
wholesale store, while a house of entertainment is rated
at forty dollars. Neither the house of entertainment
nor the victualling house is permitted to deal in spirits
—a point of policy, by the by, in which the Hawaiians
have been rather too much for the French. When
Captain La Place came to coerce the native government
into the toleration of Catholicism, he found that, through
the influence of the missionaries, wines and spirits, the
staple productions of France, were prohibited. Partly
to promote the commerce of his country, and partly
perhaps to be revenged on the zealots to whom he
ascribed the persecution of his religion, the officer in
question successfully negociated, at the cannon's mouth,
for the admission of French wines and brandies at a
duty not exceeding five per cent.; but, as he neglected
to provide for consumption as well as for importation,
as he certainly would have done in the event of his
having thought of the precaution, he left, after all,
the better half of a drawn battle in the hands of the
The harbour dues of Honolulu must also yield a considerable sum, being six cents a ton on every vessel that
may touch for refreshments, and sixty on every vessel
that may enter with a cargo. The distinction, though
in the proportion of ten to one, is not unreasonable in
G 2 rfrlTT—TIM
J ii!
itself; but it is said to be an instrument of partiality
and oppression in the hands of the harbour-master. As
a mere visitor is allowed to land goods to pay for his
supplies, without thereby becoming liable for the heavier
rate, the harbour-master clearly has the power, if he has
the inclination, to favour one by permitting him to land
too much, and to harass another by preventing him
from landing enough; and, being an American, Reynolds is shrewdly suspected by the British of being
influenced in this matter by national predilections and
antipathies. Either the office should be filled by a
native, or the dues should be more equitably adjusted
with reference to all the possible variety of circumstances.
Last, though not least, comes the import duty. This
tax, under the existing state of the foreign relations of
the group, cannot exceed five per cent., ad valorem,
France having established this rate with respect to all
its merchandize in general, as well as with respect to its
wines and brandies in particular, and England and
America being entitled to the same indulgence as the
most favoured nations. In point of fact, however, it is
only three per cent.;—a rate at which, moderate as it is,
this branch of the revenues cannot be less than 8,000 or
10,000 dollars.
To close this subdivision of the chapter, all these
taxes, with the exception of such as are levied on
foreigners, do not directly yield much cash to the
government. Where the sum stated is of the nature of
a penalty, it is taken out, in default of payment, in the
shape of imprisonment, with hard labour; but, when it
is not of the nature of a penalty, it is accepted in all ROUND THE WORLD.
sorts of produce, such as cloth, cotton, arrow-root, sugar,
&c.,—the whole, however, being easily convertible either
into money or into imported commodities.
The king's personal share, or what may be styled the
civil list, is said to amount to about j83,000 sterling.
Before anything got his length, many others doubtless
helped themselves with unscrupulous liberality. Now,
however, a better system prevails, Dr. Judd of the missionary body having been appointed, since my departure,
and in consequence, I may say, of my suggestions, treasurer-general, with sufficient powers to regulate and
control the proceedings of all the subordinate receivers
of the public money,
Previously to the conquests of Kamehameha, the
government of each island was almost entirely aristocratic, the nominal monarch being little more than the
first among equals. Gradually, however, Kamehameha
broke the power and abridged the privileges of the
chiefs, rendering them, moreover, dependent on his will
for such privileges and power as he still left them; and,
though he was too politic a prince to abuse his prerogatives, yet he so effectually consolidated his despotism,
that his immediate successor, however inferior in personal character, was able to maintain the same position
with respect to the oligarchs as the conqueror himself
had occupied. In one particular of vital importance,
Liho Liho extended the rights of superiority which he
had inherited from his father: I allude to his having
enacted, without any attempt at resistance on the part
of the individuals interested, that the lands of the chiefs,v OVERLAND JOURNEY
instead of being hereditary, as, to a certain extent, they
had been, should revert to the crown, as fiefs for life, on
the death of the respective proprietors. During the
minority of the present sovereign, Liho Liho's immediate
successor, the chiefs did their best to recover and perpetuate their rights by repealing Liho Liho's enactment
aforesaid, and declaring their lands to be exempted,
unless in case of treason, from everything like forfeiture
or reversion.
Of the condition of the great mass of the people,
during all these changes, I have already incidentally
said enough under various heads; and I need not here
say anything more than this, that they had not even a
notion of legal right, while most of their oppressors had
little or no sense of moral obligation.
Recently, however, the political relations of the three
parties, king, chiefs, and people, have undergone material and important changes. A constitution has been
promulgated by which the people are not only admitted
to a share in the work of legislation, but also in this
respect appear to be placed on the same level as the inferior grades of the aristocracy. In addition to his
majesty,—who has a negative on all the proceedings,—
and to a house of nobles,—which consists of fifteen
nominees of the crown,— the Hawaiian Parliament
possesses also its representative body, which contains
'seven deputies, chosen without any qualification, or
rank,  or fortune  on  their  own   parts,  by  universal
Whether the deputies are subject to any restriction
as to sex, I cannot gather from the terms of Magna
Charta; but, among the nobles, at least there are almost
as many ladies as gentlemen—nearly half of the conclave, to make the anomaly still more anomalous,
being married couples, namely, our friends Kealiia-
houni, Paki, and Kanaina, with their better halves.
From this constitution, the oligarchy, as such, has
clearly received its death-blow, more particularly as
the fifteen grandees, with their twelve separate possibilities of issue, muster among them only eleven olive
branches to succeed them, of which at least six, a
majority of the whole, belong to the overshadowing
tree of the Kamehamehas.
Nor are the laws which have flowed from the constitution less fatal to the oligarchs in their spirit of impartiality than the constitution itself,—a high chief having
been hanged a short time before our arrival, for the
once venial crime of poisoning his wife. The radical
reform in question has confessedly been effected by a
concurrence of two very different causes, the extension
of foreign commerce, and the progress of native education. Trained under the exclusive control of Protestant
republicans, the young men and women of all classes
could not fail to lose their hereditary reverence for
arbitrary distinctions, which were as incompatible with
the light of the gospel as they were repugnant to the
spirit of freedom; while the chiefs were constrained to
cherish the very system that was thus undermining their
caste, by a conviction that nothing but the enlightening
and elevating of the people could prevent themselves
from being overwhelmed by the gradually swelling tide
of the foreign population.
The descent of the crown is worthy of a passing
remark, as throwing light on some of the national pecu- Fl'^W
liarities. In consequence of the general dissoluteness
of manners, the question of paternity was always more
or less problematical; and the mother was the only
parent with respect to whom even the wisest child had
any certain knowledge. Hence all the great ones of
the group, and probably, in imitation of them, the
small ones too, used to marry as many of their own
sisters as possible, in order to make sure at least of
collateral descendants. Thus, Liho Liho married three
of his sisters, while Kaui Keaouli, the reigning sovereign, had a fourth sister as his first wife. Subsequently
to her death, his majesty could no longer follow suit,
for his only surviving sisters, two of Liho Liho's
dowagers, had, besides being too mature in years
for his fancy, respectively espoused Kekuanaoa and
On the part of the king, therefore, the chances of
genuine offspring were considerably diminished; and,
as both the princesses had issue of undoubted authenticity, the hopes of the nation were turned towards the
children of Kinau, as the rightful successors of all the
Kamehamehas. Accordingly, Kekuanaoa's third son
was formally recognised as heir presumptive of the
throne, while his first and second sons were definitively
appointed as the future governors, respectively, of
Kaui and Mowee. Kaui Keaouli, however, brought all
this arrangement into jeopardy by taking to himself a
second consort in the person of a daughter of Captain
Jack, the admiral of the group; but, as Captain Jack
was a chief only of the third grade, her inferiority of
rank, for the German doctrine of equal marriages was
indigenous among the Hawaiians, concurred with the ROUND THE WORLD.
possibilities of a matrimonial mistake in strengthening
the interest of the female line. Still, in the absence of
positive law to the contrary, Kahuna's progeny ought
to inherit the kingdom; but unfortunately both her
young ones have, by sudden and premature deaths, left
a clear field for the pure blood of the Kekuanaoas,
But the rules of succession are probably destined to
be of little importance. Though Kaui Keaouli, now that
his strict temperance gives full play to his naturally
excellent sense, may hold the sceptre of Kamehameha
to the end of his days, yet his successors are not likely
long to retain in their hands the actual powers of
government. To say nothing at present of foreign
states, the whites and the half-breeds—two classes
which are each becoming more and more numerous and
powerful every day—will not always submit to native
rulers. On the ground that the general laws, which
may suit the native population, are not adapted to their
own condition, they will demand, as they have, in effect,
already demanded, particular laws for themselves, with
a voice in making the same. When they have got an
inch, they will take an ell, till at last they will become
the legislators of the archipelago, and that, in all probability, through the letter of the very constitution,
which has been framed, as we have just seen, to neutralize and check their influence. Under that instrument, nearly all authority is vested, either directly or
indirectly, in the king; and he is the very individual
in the group who has the greatest interest in keeping
the foreigners in good humour, as being those from
whom he derives the most productive portions of his
revenue. iraisf!',! ;
!:!■.. 11;;
His majesty might thus be induced to carry into
effect the measures of the whites and half-breeds, till
finally he should become a puppet in their hands, a kind
of Great Mogul in miniature. He might even arm them
with the means of carrying their measures for themselves. He might call some of them into his council
of patricians, as he has, in fact, abroad called one
half-breed, son and namesake of the John Young,
whom his father before him elevated to be a high
chief; or he might serve their purpose with still
greater ease and certainty by appointing one of them
to the standing office of premier, or co-regent, of the
kingdom. Without affecting to put forth these details
as predictions, some such general result must soon be
realized — always, of course, in default of the previous intervention of some one or other of the maritime
The chances of such intervention are now less than
they have hitherto been. The Russians are said to have
once had an eye on the Sandwich Islands, having
exhibited some sinister movements in Kauai, and having
proposed to lease the uplands of Mowee for the growing
of wheat; but, besides that, they have never interfered
in a national capacity; they are now so little suspected
in the matter, that they have not even been requested,
as England, France, and America have been, to recognise the independence of the group. Again, the three
powers last mentioned, by acknowledging the entire
and absolute sovereignty of the Hawaiian Government,
have not only disclaimed for themselves, but have
virtually taken upon them to disclaim for all other
states,  all  right  and intention  of appropriating  the HOUND THE WORLD.
group, as if unoccupied territory, under the public law
of the civilized world.
In fact, under the guarantee of America, France, and
England, the Sandwich Islands are secured as effectually
as any other community against foreign interference,
excepting that, from their position and the inexperience
of their rulers, they are peculiarly liable to come into
collision with the very powers that have guaranteed
their independence. Their position alone with respect
to the trading interests of England and America will
render neutrality extremely difficult, if not altogether
impossible, in the melancholy event of a war between
those kindred states; while any infringement of the
law of nations in this respect will be sure to lead to the
occupation of the group on the part of England, either
^,s the avenger of her own wrongs, or as a protector
against the vengeance of America. But, unlike this
occasional danger, the inexperience of their rulers is a
rock on which they may be dashed at any time with
fatal effect; and, within these few short years, the
cause in question has placed the native government at
the mercy both of France and of England.
But, so far as this latter evil is concerned, territorial
seizure, at least till all other means of redress have
failed, appears to be prohibited by the spirit, if not the
letter, of the guarantee of independence. The three
Powers gave up very different claims. France surrendered nothing but her thirst for all kinds and degrees
of glory: America had acquired something like an
equitable title by her instrumentality in bringing the
archipelago within the pale of civilization and Christianity ; and England, to say nothing of an unvarying
ii 92
course of kindness and generosity, enjoyed all the legal
rights, that could be based on a complete discovery and
on repeated cessions. The sacrifices having been so unequal, a territorial seizure, which could at all be avoided,
would be a fraud on England and America, if perpetrated by France, while, if perpetrated by America, it
would be a fraud on England.
Even if France should effect a justifiable seizure, a
seizure rendered inevitable at the moment by the obstinacy or poverty of the native authorities, America
and England would be entitled to make her relinquish
her prey, on giving security for adequate satisfaction.
To hand over the Hawaiian archipelago to a people of
a different spirit and a different tongue would in them
be treason against their kindred races, that have redeemed the islands from barbarism by the arts of peace,—
treason against their common language, that is training
the natives to a bloodless fraternization,—treason against
the great cause of human improvement, which is to find
in that common language the clearest light, and in those
kindred races the best instructors. But of such cooperation the incidental effects would be infinitely more
valuable than the mere deliverance of a few Polynesian
Isles from the clutches of an unscrupulous oppressor.
It would recognise the fact, that Great Britain and the
United States are still linked together by every possible
tie, excepting only the bond of a common government;
while it would, at least on neutral ground, merge the political asperities of this single distinction ia the consciousness that, on the map of the world which Providence
is visibly sketching, the American Union and the British
dominions are only incomplete parts of that English
empire which, already the greatest on earth, is ultimately to embrace half the globe.
As I was myself a party to the negotiation, which
resulted in England's recognition of the independence
of the group, I might appear to have a personal interest
in defending the policy of that measure, had not Lord
Palmerston's previous disclaimer of British sovereignty
left little but a matter of form to be settled between
Lord Aberdeen, on the one hand, and the Hawaiian
Envoys and myself, on the other. But, even before
Lord Palmerston offered the disclaimer in question,
what was the actual position of our country with respect
to the native authorities, as distinguished from the rival
powers of the civilized world ? Though against the latter
the claim of England was conclusive and complete, yet,
in regard to the former, it amounted to nothing more
than the barren right of feudal superiority.
Considering that, in the days of Cook, the Sandwich
Islands were just about as populous, in proportion to
extent, as Wales or Scotland, they could not, on any
principles of law or of reason, have been appropriated,
as unoccupied territory, for the purposes of colonization, more particularly as the aborigines lived, at least
as exclusively as either the Scotch or the Welsh, on
what they extracted from the soil by the sweat of their
brows. But the rights of discovery, whatever they were,
were clearly abandoned with respect to the natives by
Vancouver's acceptance of Kamehameha's cession of
the sovereignty of Hawaii,—an acceptance which the
British Government of the day never disavowed ; while
the new title, for which the old one was thus bartered, was itself  inconsistent, as was also its subse-
% 94
■ ■ i.«. (,
quent confirmation on the part of Liho Liho, with any
thing like direct interference in the internal polity of
the group.
If England had taken the offers of the conqueror and
his son, according to their well understood significations,
she could have assumed only the protectorate of the
archipelago,—an office which, at least according to
French experience and perhaps in the very nature of
things, would have embroiled her, to say nothing of the
jealousy of foreign rivals, with the very savages whom
she professed to protect. If she had actually established
the indirect dominion in question, she would, in all
probability, have soon been justified by some violation
or other of her rights in grasping the immediate
sovereignty; but, as she had not chosen to establish
anything of the kind, she stood on the same footing as
France, or America, or Holland, or Denmark, with
respect to the natives, in any attempt at annexing the
islands to her colonial empire. Such annexation, unless
it rested on the plainest justice and the strongest
necessity, could not, on the whole, be advantageous
to the mistress of so many widely scattered dependencies, held, for the most part, in cheap and willing
subjection by their faith in her moderation and integrity. It might, indeed, promote the welfare of the
great mass of the people; while, even to the dominant
caste, it could be rendered palatable by a comparatively trifling amount of annuities, which, in most cases,
would be limited by Nature herself to the lives of the
first recipients. It is only on this disinterested ground
and in this honourable way, that England can ever
think of possessing the Hawaiian archipelago, however ROUND THE WORLD.
tempting may be its agricultural, or commercial, or
political, attractions.
England, however, has duties to discharge towards
her children, who have settled, or may hereafter settle,
in the group, over and above the obvious obligation of
watching over the interests of her shipping. Her
cheapest and least offensive, and perhaps also her most
efficient, mode of doing all that she ought to do in the
premises, is to be particularly careful and cautious in
the selection of her resident representative. The British consul, if he be unexceptionable in manner and
temper, in judgment and knowledge,—if, in a word, he
know how to unite the gentle in tone with the firm in
action,—cannot fail to be in himself a host against all the
caprices and intrigues that are likely to challenge his
interposition. Such a man, simply by doing nothing to
lower the dignity of his country, would, in general, be
treated as if he had her resistless power at his back;
while, in order to keep up the national prestige, the visits
of ships of war, hitherto " few and far between," might
easily be so regulated as always to hang over the heads
of all whom it might concern,—surely as patriotic, if
not so profitable, an occupation for Her Majesty's
squadron as the freighting of silver from San Bias, or
The functions of the British Consul, which have not
always been judiciously discharged by Mr. Charlton,
are the more difficult and delicate, inasmuch as the
native authorities, as already shown to exist under the
written constitution, are known to be a good deal under
the irresponsible influence of American advisers. Soon
after their arrival from Boston, the missionaries noto- 96
riously became, so far at least as new legislation was
concerned, the real rulers of the group. For many
years, they attempted, hopelessly enough, to sh