Friday, October 21, 2005

Cook's Voyage to the Pacific Ocean

"From what I have said of the Natives of New Holland they may appear to some to be the most wretched people upon Earth, but in reality they are far happier than we Europeans; being wholly unacuainted not only with the superfluos but the neessary conveniences so much sought after in Europe, they are happy in not knowing the use of them. They live in a Tranquility wich is not disturb'd by the Inequality of Conditions: The Earth and sea of their own accord furnishes them with all things necessary for life, they covet not Magnificient Houses, Householdstuff etc., they live in a warm and fine climate and enjoy a very wholesome Air, so that they have very little need for Clothing and this they seem to be fully sensible of, for many to whome we gave Cloth etc. to, left it carelessly upon the Sea beach and in the woods as a thing they had no manner of use for. In short term, nor would they ever part with any thing of their own for any one article we could offer them; this in my oppinion argues that they think themselves provided with all the necessary of Life and that they have no superfluities."
James Cook in The Voyage of the Endeavour.

The National Library of Australia have 87 engraving plates on display from Captain James Cook's Voyage to the Pacific Ocean of 1784. Multiple resolution and pan/zoom options. Cook was speared and stoned to death in the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii) in February 1779.

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