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Savage Island

SAVAGE ISLAND

 

AN ACCOUNT OF A SOJOURN
IN NIUÉ AND TONGA

 

BY BASIL C. THOMSON

 

LONDON
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET
1902

PREFACE

NIUÉ, more commonly known as Savage Island, lies 1,000 miles N.N.E. of New Zealand, and 300 miles S.S.E. of Samoa, in the loneliest spot in that part of the Pacific. Its iron-bound coasts tempt no vessels to call for supplies. At rare intervals great four- masted timber-ships pass in the offing; more rarely still schooners call to replenish the stock of the traders and to carry away their copra.

I went to the Niuéans in the name of the Queen and Empress whom the world is still lamenting, and I do not like to think of what our loss means to the people in these remote outposts of her Empire. The oldest native in the South Seas remembers no sovereign's name but hers. She was a real person to them all; a lady who had made them her especial care, had sent the gospel to them, and had bade them lay aside their clubs, and live in peace, order, and equity. Vika, as they called her affectionately—Vika, after whom they named their girl-children—was the benign, all-powerful chief, whose house was built upon the coral strand of Lonitoni (London), opposite the landing-place, where her men-o'-war were moored stem and stern in rows before her door. She read their letters with her own eyes, and had her captains to sit before her on the floor-mats while she gave them messages for the brown folk in far islands. And now Vika, the well-beloved, has left them, mourned by the empire of which they were but the tiniest part. It was hers, and she never saw it; but we, who have seen it—who have, in the humblest way, helped in the making of it—think with heavy hearts of how much hangs upon a name, and of how hard it will be to reassure them, when, as they say of their own dead kings, "kuo hala 'ae langi"—"the heaven has fallen."

 

Northampton, 1901

CONTENTS

  1. CHAPTER I
  2. PAGE
  3. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    1
  4. CHAPTER II
  5. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    23
  6. CHAPTER III
  7. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    34
  8. CHAPTER IV
  9. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    49
  10. CHAPTER V
  11. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    69
  12. CHAPTER VI
  13. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    84
  14. CHAPTER VII
  15. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    103
  16. CHAPTER VIII
  17. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    117
  18. CHAPTER IX
  19. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    133
  20. CHAPTER X
  21. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    141
  22. CHAPTER XI
  23. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    152
  1. CHAPTER XII
  2. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    167
  3. CHAPTER XIII
  4. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    182
  5. CHAPTER XIV
  6. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    194
  7. CHAPTER XV
  8. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    211
  9. APPENDIX
  10. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    218
  11. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    229

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

  1. FACE PAGE
  2. "Ship Ahoy!"
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    6
  3. The Church at Alofi
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    14
  4. A Street in Alofi
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    14
  5. The Royal Procession
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    26
  6. King Tongia
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    38
  7. Hoisting the Union Jack over Savage Island
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    40
  8. The Queen of Niué
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    46
  9. "Decently clothed from head to foot"
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    78
  10. The King and Queen take their Seats
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    118
  11. A Grave in Tonga
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    134
  12. Uiliame Tungi, the blind Chief of Hahake
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    164
  13. George Tubou II., King of Tonga
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    170
  14. A Tongan Girl
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    178
  15. The Church built by King George I. and the Government Offices wrecked by the Cyclone
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    186
  16. The Land-locked Harbour of Vavau
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    192
  17. The Colony of Flying Foxes at Kolovai
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    202
  18. J. Mateialona, Cousin of the King and Governor of Haapai
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    212
  19. The Otuhaka
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    222
  20. Map of Niué
    ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
    At the end


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.


The author died in 1939, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 75 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.