C1784

A Night Dance by Men, in Hapaee.

Rare engraving from the official British Admiralty sanctioned edition of the accounts of Cook’s third and final voyage. All other later copies made of this image by other publishers were unauthorised, usually smaller and inferior in quality. A scene in … Read Full Description

$A 350

S/N: CK03E-1249-PI-TONGA–224279
(C008)
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Details

Full Title:

A Night Dance by Men, in Hapaee.

Date:

C1784

Condition:

In good condition, with folds as issued.

Technique:

Copper engraving.

Image Size: 

410mm 
x 270mm

Paper Size: 

490mm 
x 285mm
AUTHENTICITY
A Night Dance by Men, in Hapaee. - Antique Print from 1784

Genuine antique
dated:

1784

Description:

Rare engraving from the official British Admiralty sanctioned edition of the accounts of Cook’s third and final voyage. All other later copies made of this image by other publishers were unauthorised, usually smaller and inferior in quality.

A scene in Lifuka, Tonga, 20 May 1777, with James Cook and two sailors to his left with their backs to the viewer, seated amongst a circle of Tongan men, watching a large group of men performing a dance, lit by tapers held by the watchers.

By contrast to the women dancers, the two male groups did not move towards each other but divided on either side of the chorus.

‘They sometimes sung slowly in conjunction with the chorus during which they made several very fine motions with their hands but different from those of the women, at the same time, inclining the body to either side alternately by raising one leg which was stretch’d outwards and resting on the other, the arm of the same side being also stretch’d fully upwards’.

Beddie 1743-16, p.340, Joppien 3.51A, ill.p.313

From Cook & King, A Voyage to the Pacific Ocean Undertaken by the Command of His Majesty, for Making Discoveries in the Northern Hemisphere…. Biography:

John Webber (1752 - 1793)

Official artist on Cook's third and last voyage. The reasons for the voyage were to return Omai and explore the possibility of a north-west passage along the North American continent. Webber was required to "give a more perfect idea thereof than can be formed by written description." Webber's oeuvre from the voyage was the most comprehensive record of sights in the Pacific region ever produced.

View other items by John Webber

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