C1784

Various Articles, at the Sandwich Islands.

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.  Depicted in this … Read Full Description

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Details

Full Title:

Various Articles, at the Sandwich Islands.

Date:

C1784

Condition:

In good condition.

Technique:

Copper engraving.

Image Size: 

280mm 
x 210mm
AUTHENTICITY
Various Articles, at the Sandwich Islands. - 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. 

Depicted in this image are shark tooth weapons, a boar tusk bracelet, a rattle, a dagger and an idol.

The weapons (1 & 2), constructed from wood and set with teeth from sharks, were primarily used in hand-to-hand combat. The bracelet (5) was composed of a series of boar’s tusks strung on a cord. The gourd rattle (3), filled seeds and capped with decorative featherwork, was a popular musical accompaniment to hula. The dagger, or pahoa (6), was another implement of war. The idol (4) was constructed from wicker and covered with feathers. The eyes were made from mother-of-pearl and the mouth was set with the teeth of dogs. This remarkable figure represents Kukailimoku, in his role as the god of war.

Beddie 1743-67, p.342, Joppien 3.327A, ill.p.554

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

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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