14th and 15th October 1770

[At Batavia]
14th. Early this morning a ship sail'd from hence for Holland by which I had just time to write 2 or 3 lines to Mr. Stephens, Secretary of the Admiralty, to acquaint him of our Arrival, after which I went on shore and waited upon the Shabander, who has the direction of the Town, Port, etc., to get an order to the Superintendent at Onrust to receive us at that Island, but this, I was told, would not be ready before Tuesday next. Received from the Shore Fresh Beef and Greens for the Ship's Company.
15th. Fresh Sea and land breezes and fair weather. I had forgot to mention, that upon our arrival here I had not one man upon the Sick List; Lieut. Hicks, Mr. Green, and Tupia were the only people that had any complaints occasioned by a long continuance at Sea.* (* This was an achievement indeed, and Cook records it in this simple observation. Of the many ships which had arrived at Batavia after voyages across the Pacific, none but had come to an anchor with crews decimated and enfeebled through scurvy. Hawksworth mentions, probably on the authority of Banks, that when passing Torres Straits there were several incipient cases of this disease in the Endeavour. The fresh provisions obtained at Savu probably dissipated these symptoms, if they were symptoms; but Mr. Perry, the surgeon, in his report, given in the Introduction, distinctly states that there were no cases after leaving Tahiti.)
Joseph Banks Journal
Ever since our arrival at this place Dr Solander and myself had apply'd to be introduc'd to the General or Governor on one of his Publick or Council days. We had been put off by various foolish excuses and at last were plainly told that as we could have no business with him we could have no reason to desire that favour. But as we had often press'd the thing this as an excuse did not satisfie us so I went myself to the Shabandar, who is also master of the Ceremonies, in order to ask his reasons for refusing so trifling a request; but was surprizd at being very politely receivd and told that the very next morning he would attend us, which he did and we were introduc'd and had the honour of conversing for a few minutes with his high Mightiness who however was very polite to us. Ever since our first arrival here we had been universaly told of the extreme unwholesomeness of the place which we, they said, should severely feel on account of the freshness and heal[t]hiness of our countenances.
This threat however we did not much regard thinking ourselves too well season'd to variety of Climates to fear any, and trusting more than all to an invariable temperance in every thing, which we had as yet unalterably kept during our whole residence in the warm latitudes so had small reason to doubt our resolutions of keeping for the future. Before the end of this month however we were made sensible of our Mistake. Poor Tupias broken constitution felt it first and he grew worse and worse every day. Then Tayeto his boy was attackd by a cold and i[n]flammation on his lungs; then my Servants Peter and James and myself had Intermitting fevers and Dr Solander a constant nervous one; in short every one on shore and Many on board were ill, cheifly of intermittents, Occasiond no doubt by the lowness of the countrey and the numberless dirty Canals which intersect the town in all directions.

No comments:

Post a Comment