j. d'ewes : phillipines, 1857
..., found ourselves off the northern point of the Phillipines, close inland, near the Bay of Manilla, and not above 700 miles from Shanghai.
Until the 7 th
of August, we had a succession of calms and contrary breezes, although
We passed in lat. 5" 31° north, and long. 131 east, two small low islands completely covered with cocoa-nut trees, named the St. Andrew's Islands.
Several canoes with outriggers, similar to those of the South Sea islanders, came off to us, manned by about 12 natives in each.
They were perfectly naked, with the exception of a narrow cloth round the loins ; small in figure, but well made and active, of a dark copper colour, and profusely tattoed.
Their long hair
was gathered up in a round bunch on the summit of their heads.
The race is the same as the inhabitants of the Pellew Islands, celebrated with us in connection with the history of Prince Lee Boo, and which are not far distant.
They are a mixture of the Papuan and Malay.
They brought off no provisions of any kind, except a few cocoa-nuts, but plenty of
mats, of their
own manufacture, from the cocoanut fibre, fishing lines, small pieces of
tortoise-shells, and other shells, which they were anxious
to exchange for knives, old razors, or hoop-iron; but seemed to care little for any thing else.
They appeared to be a harmless, inoffensive race, and perfectly amphibious, swimming about the ship in all directions, quite regardless of the sharks which abound here.
On the 13th, we
entered the Gelolo passage and were off the great island of Gelolo.
We were now at the entrance of the vast Malacca sea, and Archipelago, and in the domains of the Dutch East Indies.
China, Australia, and the Pacific islands, in the years 1855-56
R. Bentley London, 1857