1773 Hawkesworth Antique Print Raiatea Island, French Polynesia - Capt Cook 1769

Publisher : Captain James Cook

  • Title : [A view in the island of Ulietea with a double canoe and a boathouse] ...E. Rooker sculp....No. 3
  • Ref  :  31816
  • Size: 18 1/2in x 10 1/2in (470mm x 265mm)
  • Date : 1773
  • Condition: (A) Very Good Condition

This fine original copper-plate engraved antique print a view of fishing vessels, locals inspecting the days catch and views of the Island of Raiatea (Ulietea) in the Society Isles of French Polynesia, drawn by Sydney Parkinson, on Captain Cooks first visit to the Island in 1769, was engraved by Edward Rooker and published in the 1773 1st English edition of John Hawkesworths An account of the voyages undertaken by the order of His present Majesty for making discoveries in the Southern Hemisphere, and successively performed by Commodore Byron, Captain Wallis, Captain Carteret, and Captain Cook, in the Dolphin, the Swallow, and the Endeavor. Drawn up from the journals which were kept by the several commanders, and from the papers of Joseph Banks, Esq; by John Hawkesworth, LL.D. In three volumes. Illustrated with cuts, and a great variety of charts and maps relative to countries now first discovered, or hitherto but imperfectly known. London: printed for W. Strahan; and T. Cadell in the Strand, MDCCLXXIII.

..........a double canoe (pahi) with carved figures on bow and stern. Another double canoe in the background at right and a boathouse at left. There are a great number of boathouses all round the bays built with a Catanarian arch, thatched all over; and the boats kept in them are very long, bellying out on the sides, with a very high peak stern, and are used only at particular seasons.....from the account by Sydney Parkinson 1769

General Definitions:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color : - off white
Age of map color: -
Colors used: -
General color appearance: -
Paper size: - 18 1/2in x 10 1/2in (470mm x 265mm)
Plate size: - 18 1/2in x 9 1/2in (470mm x 240mm)
Margins: - Min 1/2in (12mm)

Margins: - Folds as issued
Plate area: - Folds as issued, creasing and light soiling along folds
Verso: - Folds as issued

Raiatea, is the second largest of the Society Islands, after Tahiti, in French Polynesia. The island is widely regarded as the centre of the eastern islands in ancient Polynesia and it is likely that the organised migrations to Hawaii, Aotearoa and other parts of East Polynesia started at Raiātea.
A traditional name for the island is Havaii, homeland of the Māori people.
The first European to record sighting Ra iātea was Pedro Fernandes de Queirós in 1606; it was charted as La Fugitiva The Polynesian navigator, Tupaia, who sailed with explorer James Cook, was born in Raiātea around 1725.
Cook visited Raiatea in 1769 and again in 1773-1774. Omai (c.1751-1780), another young man from Raiātea, traveled with the European explorers to London in 1774 and also served as an interpreter to Captain Cook on his second and third journey.
King Tamatoa VI was the last monarch, reigning from 1884-1888.

Sydney Parkinson 1745 – 71 was draughtsman to the botanist Sir Joseph Banks on James Cook’s first voyage to the Pacific in 1768. He died of dysentery in 1771, on the homeward voyage.
Parkinson was the first European artist to create drawings of Indigenous Australian, Maori & South Sea peoples, as well as landscapes, from direct observation. Hundreds of his original drawings survive in the British Museum. He is particularly remembered for his plant illustrations which were later used to create the lavish plates for Joseph Banks’ Florilegium.
When the Endeavour returned to England in 1772, a dispute arose between Joseph Banks and Sydney’s brother, Stanfield Parkinson. As his employer, Banks claimed rights to Sydney’s drawings, papers and collections made on the voyage. Stanfield claimed that Sydney had willed them to his family. Banks lent the Parkinson family Sydney’s journal and drawings with instructions that they were not to be published, however Stanfield disregarded this and arranged for A Journal of a voyage to the South Seas to be printed from Sydney’s account of the voyage.
Banks managed to suppress Stanfield’s publication until the official account of the voyage, edited by John Hawkesworth, appeared. In return for Parkinson’s papers, Banks paid Stanfield Parkinson 500 pounds for balance of wages due to Sydney, but the dispute did not end there. Stanfield further accused Banks of retaining items collected by Sydney which were intended for his relatives. Stanfield Parkinson was declared insane soon after the publication of Sydney Parkinson’s Journal and died in an asylum.

John Hawkesworth an English writer and journalist, Hawkesworth was commissioned by the British Admiralty to edit for publication the narratives of its officers’ circumnavigations. He was given full access to the journals of the commanders and the freedom to adapt and re-tell them in the first person. Cook was already on his way back from his second Pacific voyage, temporarily docked at Cape Town (South Africa), when he first saw the published volumes: he was mortified and furious to find that Hawkesworth claimed in the introduction that Cook had seen and blessed (with slight corrections) the resulting manuscript. (In his defense, Hawkesworth also had been a victim of misunderstanding.) Cook had trouble recognizing himself. Moreover, the work was full of errors and commentary introduced by Hawkesworth and, in Cook’s view, too full of Banks, who had promoted himself and the publication. Still, the work was popular; the first edition sold out in several months.

Edward Rooker 1712 – 1774 was an English engraver, draughtsman and actor.