Were About This, We Observed The Natives Assembling From All Parts, And
Forming Themselves Into Two Parties, As They Did The Preceding Evening, One
On Each Side The Landing-Place, To The Amount Of Some Thousands, Armed As
A canoe, sometimes conducted by one, and at other times by two or
three men, now and then came off, bringing a few cocoa-nuts or plantains.
These they gave us without asking for any return; but I took care they
should always have something.
Their chief design seemed to invite us on
shore. One of those who came off was the old man, who had already
ingratiated himself into our favour. I made him understand, by signs, that
they were to lay aside their weapons, took those which were in the canoe,
and threw them overboard, and made him a present of a large piece of cloth.
There was no doubt but he understood me, and made my request known to his
countrymen. For as soon as he landed, we observed him to go first to the
one party, and then to the other; nor was he, ever after, seen by us with
any thing like a weapon in his hand. After this, three fellows came in a
canoe under the stern, one of them brandishing a club, with which he struck
the ship's side, and committed other acts of defiance, but at last offered
to exchange it for a string of beads, and some other trifles. These were
sent down to him by a line; but the moment they were in his possession, he
and his companions paddled off in all haste, without giving the club or any
thing else in return.
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