we stretched in east, to within a mile of the shore, and then tacked in
seventy-five fathoms, before a sandy flat, on which several of the natives
made their appearance.
We observed on the sides of the hills, several
plantations that were laid out by line, and fenced round.
On the 31st, at noon, the S. or S.W. point of the island bore N. 62 deg. E.,
distant four leagues. This forms the N.W. point of what I call
Bougainville's Passage; the N.E. point at this time bore N. 85 deg. E., and the
N.W. end of Mallicollo from S. 54 deg. E. to S. 72 deg. E. Latitude observed 15 deg.
45' S. In the afternoon, in stretching to the east, we weathered the S.S.W.
point of the island, from which the coast trends east, northerly. It is
low, and seemed to form some creeks or coves; and, as we got farther into
the passage, we perceived some small low isles lying along it, which seemed
to extend behind St Bartholomew Island.
Having now finished the survey of the whole archipelago, the season of the
year made it necessary for me to return to the south, while I had yet some
time left to explore any land I might meet with between this and New
Zealand; where I intended to touch, that I might refresh my people, and
recruit our stock of wood and water for another southern course.
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