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THE WORKS OF

ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

SWANSTON EDITION

VOLUME XVIII


_Of this SWANSTON EDITION in Twenty-five
Volumes of the Works of ROBERT LOUIS
STEVENSON Two Thousand and Sixty Copies
have been printed, of which only Two Thousand
Copies are for sale._

_This is No._ .......


[Illustration: A MAP TO ILLUSTRATE R. L. STEVENSON'S LIFE IN THE SOUTH
SEAS]


THE WORKS OF

ROBERT LOUIS
STEVENSON


VOLUME EIGHTEEN


LONDON: PUBLISHED BY CHATTO AND
WINDUS: IN ASSOCIATION WITH CASSELL
AND COMPANY LIMITED: WILLIAM
HEINEMANN: AND LONGMANS GREEN
AND COMPANY MDCCCCXII


ALL RIGHTS RESERVED




CONTENTS

IN THE SOUTH SEAS

PAGE
Editorial Note ix


PART I.--THE MARQUESAS

CHAPTER
I. An Island Landfall 5

II. Making Friends 12

III. The Maroon 21

IV. Death 28

V. Depopulation 36

VI. Chiefs and Tapus 44

VII. Hatiheu 53

VIII. The Port of Entry 61

IX. The House of Temoana 69

X. A Portrait and a Story 77

XI. Long-Pig--a Cannibal High Place 85

XII. The Story of a Plantation 95

XIII. Characters 105

XIV. In a Cannibal Valley 112

XV. The Two Chiefs of Atuona 119


PART II.--THE PAUMOTUS

I. The Dangerous Archipelago--Atolls at a Distance 129

II. Fakarava: an Atoll at Hand 137

III. A House To Let in a Low Island 146

IV. Traits and Sects in the Paumotus 155

V. A Paumotuan Funeral 165

VI. Graveyard Stories 170


PART III.--THE EIGHT ISLANDS

I. The Kona Coast 187

II. A Ride in the Forest 197

III. The City of Refuge 203

IV. Kaahumanu 209

V. The Lepers of Kona 215


PART IV.--THE GILBERTS

I. Butaritari 223

II. The Four Brothers 229

III. Around Our House 237

IV. A Tale of a Tapu 247

V. A Tale of a Tapu (_continued_) 255

VI. The Five Days' Festival 265

VII. Husband and Wife 278


PART V.--THE GILBERTS--APEMAMA

I. The King of Apemama: the Royal Trader 289

II. The King of Apemama: Foundation Of Equator Town 298

III. The King of Apemama: the Palace of Many Women 306

IV. The King of Apemama: Equator Town And the Palace 313

V. King and Commons 321

VI. The King of Apemama: Devil-work 330

VII. The King of Apemama 342


LETTERS FROM SAMOA 351




EDITORIAL NOTE


_The following chapters are selected from a series which was first
published partially in 'Black and White' (February to December 1891),
and fully in the New York 'Sun' during the same period. The voyages
which supplied the occasion and the material for the work were three in
number, viz. one of seven months (June 1888 to January 1889) in the
yacht 'Casco' from San Francisco to the Marquesas, the Paumotus, Tahiti,
and thence northward to Hawaii; a second (June to December 1889) in the
trading schooner 'Equator,' from Honolulu, the Hawaiian capital, where
the author had stayed in the intervening five months, to the Gilberts
and thence to Samoa; and a third (April to September 1890) in the
trading steamer 'Janet Nicoll,' which set out from Sydney and followed a
very devious course, extending as far as Penrhyn in the Eastern to the
Marshall Islands in the Western Pacific._

_Before setting out on the first of these voyages, the author had
contracted to write an account of his adventures in the form of letters
for serial publication. The plan by and by changed in his mind into that
of a book partly of travel and partly of research, which should combine
the results of much careful observation and enquiry upon matters of
island history, custom, belief, and tradition, with some account of his
own experiences and those of his travelling companions. Under the
nominal title of 'Letters' he began to compose the chapters of such a
book on board the 'Janet Nicoll,' and continued the task during the
first ten months of his residence in Samoa (October 1890 to July 1891).
Before the serial publication had gone very far, he realised that the
personal and impersonal elements in his work were not very successfully_
_ combined, nor in proportions that contented his readers. Accordingly
he abandoned for the time being the idea of republishing the chapters in
book form. But when the scheme of the Edinburgh Edition was maturing, he
desired that a selection should be made from them and should form one
volume of that edition. That desire was carried out. The same selection
is here republished, with the addition of a half-section then omitted,
describing a visit to the Kona coast of Hawaii and the lepers' port of
embarkation for Molokai._

_It must be understood that a considerable portion of the author's
voyages above mentioned is not recorded at all in the following pages.
Of one of its most attractive episodes, the visit to Tahiti, no account
was written; while of his experiences in Hawaii only the visit to the
Kona coast is included. Several chapters which did not come out to the
writer's satisfaction have been omitted. Of the five sections here
given, each is complete in itself, with the exception of Part III. The
first deals with the Marquesas, the second with the Paumolus--the former
a volcanic and mountainous group, the latter a low group of atolls or
coral islands, both in the Eastern Pacific and both under the
protectorate of France. The third section is fragmentary, and deals, as
has been said, with only one portion of the writer's experiences in
Hawaii. The last two describe his residence in the Gilberts, a remote
and little-known coral group in the Western Pacific, which at the time
of his visit was under independent native government, but has since been
annexed by Great Britain. This is the part of his work with which the
author himself was best satisfied, and it derives additional interest
from describing a state of manners and government which has now passed
away._




IN THE SOUTH SEAS

BEING AN ACCOUNT OF EXPERIENCES AND OBSERVATIONS IN THE MARQUESAS,
PAUMOTUS AND GILBERT ISLANDS IN THE COURSE OF TWO CRUISES, ON THE
YACHT _CASCO_ (1888) AND THE SCHOONER _EQUATOR_ (1889)




PART I

THE MARQUESAS




IN THE SOUTH SEAS

CHAPTER I

AN ISLAND LANDFALL


For nearly ten years my health had been declining; and for some while
before I set forth upon my voyage, I believed I was come to the
afterpiece of life, and had only the nurse and undertaker to expect. It
was suggested that I should try the South Seas; and I was not unwilling
to visit like a ghost, and be carried like a bale, among scenes that had
attracted me in youth and health. I chartered accordingly Dr. Merrit's
schooner yacht, the _Casco_, seventy-four tons register; sailed from San
Francisco towards the end of June 1888, visited the eastern islands, and
was left early the next year at Honolulu. Hence, lacking courage to
return to my old life of the house and sick-room, I set forth to leeward
in a trading schooner, the _Equator_, of a little over seventy tons,
spent four months among the atolls (low coral islands) of the Gilbert
group, and reached Samoa towards the close of '89. By that time
gratitude and habit were beginning to attach me to the islands; I had
gained a competency of strength; I had made friends; I had learned new
interests; the time of my voyages had passed like days in fairyland; and
I decided to remain. I began to prepare these pages at sea, on a third
cruise, in the trading steamer _Janet Nicoll_. If more days are granted
me, they shall be passed where I have found life most pleasant and man
most interesting; the axes of my black boys are already clearing the
foundations of my future house; and I must learn to address readers from
the uttermost parts of the sea.

That I should thus have reversed the verdict of Lord Tennyson's hero is
less eccentric than appears. Few men who come to the islands leave them;
they grow grey where they alighted; the palm shades and the trade-wind
fans them till they die, perhaps cherishing to the last the fancy of a
visit home, which is rarely made, more rarely enjoyed, and yet more
rarely repeated. No part of the world exerts the same attractive power
upon the visitor, and the task before me is to communicate to fireside
travellers some sense of its seduction, and to describe the life, at sea
and ashore, of many hundred thousand persons, some of our own blood and
language, all our contemporaries, and yet as remote in thought and habit
as Rob Roy or Barbarossa, the Apostles or the Cęsars.

The first experience can never be repeated. The first love, the first
sunrise, the first South Sea island, are memories apart and touched a
virginity of sense. On the 28th of July 1888 the moon was an hour down
by four in the morning.



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