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A Voyage Towards the South Pole and Round the World - Volume 2

James Cook

Book Overview: 

Having, on his first voyage, discovered Australia, Cook still had to contend with those who maintained that the Terra Australians Incognita (the unknown Southern Continent) was a reality. To finally settle the issue, the British Admiralty sent Cook out again into the vast Southern Ocean with two sailing ships totaling only about 800 tons. Listen as Cook, equipped with one of the first chronometers, pushes his small vessel not merely into the Roaring Forties or the Furious Fifties but becomes the first explorer to penetrate the Antarctic Circle, reaching an incredible Latitude 71 degrees South, just failing to discover Antarctica.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .The presents I made to the old people, and to such as seemed to be of consequence, had little effect on their conduct. They indeed climbed the cocoa-nut trees, and threw us down the nuts, without requiring any thing for them; but I took care that they should always have somewhat in return. I observed that many were afraid to touch what belonged to us; and they seemed to have no notion of exchanging one thing for another. I took the old man (whose name we now found to be Paowang) to the woods, and made him understand, I wanted to cut down some trees to take on board the ship; cutting some down at the same time, which we put into one of our boats, together with a few small casks of water, with a view of letting the people see what it was we chiefly wanted. Paowang very readily gave his consent to cut wood; nor was there any one who made the least objection. He only desired the cocoa-nut trees might not be cut down. Matters being thus settled, we embarked and returned on board to dinner, . . . Read More