New Zealand - A General History And Collection Of Voyages And Travels - Volume 14 - By Robert Kerr









































































 -  That our red
    feathers had infused a general and irresistible longing into the minds
    of all the people, will appear - Page 565
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"That Our Red Feathers Had Infused A General And Irresistible Longing Into The Minds Of All The People, Will Appear From The Following Circumstance.

I have observed, in the former part of this narrative, that the women of the families of chiefs never admitted the visits of Europeans; and also that whatever liberties some unmarried girls might with impunity allow themselves, the married state had always been held sacred and unspotted at Otaheite.

But such was the force of the temptation, that a chief actually offered his wife to Captain Cook, and the lady, by her husband's order, attempted to captivate him, by an artful display of her charms, seemingly in such a careless manner, as many a woman would be at a loss to imitate. I was sorry, for the sake of human nature, that this proposal came from a man, whose general character was in other respects very fair. It was Potatow who could descend to such meanness, from the high spirit of grandeur which he had formerly shewn. We expressed great indignation at his conduct, and rebuked him for his frailty." - G.F.

From this specimen of frailty, may be readily inferred the dissoluteness of those females, who had neither rank nor marriage to render chastity a virtue. But, alas! one need not visit the South Seas, to become acquainted with the possible extent of human infirmity. A cynic might, without such travel, be tempted to parody the words of Sir Robert Walpole, and say, that every woman had her price.

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