C1785

Reception Du Capitaine Cook A Hapaee

Rare engraving from the French edition of Cook’s voyages. Reception of Captain Cook at Hapaee (Lifuka), one of the islands of the Ha’apai group of Tonga. Cook had arrived on the island 17 July 1777 and stayed until the 29th. … Read Full Description

$A 125

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S/N: CK03F-014-PI-TONG–224391
(F28)
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Details

Full Title:

Reception Du Capitaine Cook A Hapaee

Date:

C1785

Condition:

In good condition, with centre fold as issued.

Technique:

Copper engraving.

Image Size: 

380mm 
x 240mm

Paper Size: 

400mm 
x 270mm
AUTHENTICITY
Reception Du Capitaine Cook A Hapaee - Antique Print from 1785

Genuine antique
dated:

1785

Description:

Rare engraving from the French edition of Cook’s voyages.

Reception of Captain Cook at Hapaee (Lifuka), one of the islands of the
Ha’apai group of Tonga. Cook had arrived on the island 17 July 1777 and
stayed until the 29th.

Captain Cook seated with the chiefs,
watching two pairs of combatants one pair boxing, the other pair
fighting with clubs, within a large circle of spectators. Some men of
Cook’s company are on the left on the fringe of the crowd.

‘Presently
after a number of men entered the Circle or Area before us, armed with
Clubs made of the green branches of the Cocoanut tree, these paraded
about for a few minutes and then retired the one half to one side and
the other half to the other, and seated themselves before the
spectators: but soon after went to single Combat, one or two steping
forward from the one side and chalenging those on the other which was
done more by actions than words; if the Challenge was expected, which
was generally the case, each put himself in  a proper attitude and began
to engage and continued till one or the other gave out or their weapons
were broke….there were Wristling and Boxing matches; the first were
performed in the same m[an]ner as at Otahiete, and the second very
little different from the method practiced in England.” Cook Journals III, i, 107)

John Webber (1752 - 1793)

John Webber was an 18th century artist, best known for his work as the official artist on Captain James Cook's third and final voyage to the Pacific in 1776-1780. He was born in London, England in 1751 and was trained as an artist. Webber accompanied Cook on his voyage as the official artist, tasked with creating drawings and paintings of the places and people they encountered. He produced many illustrations and sketches that were used to make engravings for inclusion in the official account of the voyage, published after Cook's death. Webber was required to "give a more perfect idea thereof than can be formed by written description." Webber's illustrations and engravings of the Pacific islands and their inhabitants are considered some of the most accurate and detailed depictions of the region from that time. They provide an important record of the places and people encountered by Cook and his crew, and are valuable for understanding the culture and daily life of the people of the Pacific during the 18th century. He died in London in 1793, after having returned from the voyage, but his work continues to be recognised as an important historical record of the voyage and of the art of his time. 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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