By John Williams
In response to John Williams' meticulous documentation of his travels, this 1837 quantity bargains an perception into the perilous lifetime of a missionary within the early 19th century. the writer, an ironmonger via exchange, set sail for the South Sea Islands in 1817 with the goal of spreading the gospel and introducing glossy know-how to the quarter. in addition to recounting the widespread threats to his safeguard from indignant natives, conflict, normal catastrophe and illness, Williams presents specified surveys of the peoples, languages and ordinary surroundings he encountered and describes with nice exuberance and humour 'the impact made upon barbarous humans through their first sex with civilised man'. Made extra poignant via the author's loss of life by the hands of cannibals simply years after the book's ebook, this can be a unprecedented account of the perseverance and ingenuity of a guy who turned a hero and martyr for the Protestant missionary circulation.
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Additional resources for A Narrative of Missionary Enterprises in the South Sea Islands: With Remarks Upon the Natural History of the Islands, Origin, Languages, Traditions, and Usages of the Inhabitants
The spray from the breaking of these billows frequently rises to so great a height as to present a beautiful marine rainbow. The waters of the lake, between the reef and the shore, are placid and transparent, at the bottom of which, and on the sloping sides of the banks that are seen beneath the surface of the water, a most enchanting picture presents itself; for coral 24 A BELIEF IN THE SCRIPTURES NECESSARY. of every variety, of every shape, and of every hue, is seen intermingled in rich profusion, presenting to the imagination the idea of a sub-marine flowergarden or shrubbery of exquisite beauty : among the tortuous branches of the madrepore, and widespreading leaves of other corals, the zebra-fish, and fish of every colour and size, are seen gamboling in conscious security.
T Forster's Voyages. 32 ON CORALS. " A third opinion is, that the dead animal is converted into coral. This latter idea appears to be sanctioned by some persons of eminence. " * Mr. "f In venturing to offer a theory upon this topic, differing from those entertained by scientific men of great eminence, I must cast myself upon the candour of any who, by their superior discernment, may detect a want of soundness in my propositions. That there exists a considerable portion of calcareous matter, or carbonate of lime, in salt water, has, of course, long been known ; it was, however, a fact with which I was unacquainted, until, when abroad, being in want of salt, we were compelled to make it by boiling down sea water.
The proposition was agreed to, and letters of encouragement were written to the Missionaries; and while the SUCCESS OF THE MISSION. 15 vessel which carried the letters was on her passage to Tahiti, another ship was conveying to England, not only the news of the entire overthrow of idolatry, but also the rejected idols of the people. " From that time to this, one rapid series of successes has attended our labours, so that Island after Island, and group after group, have, in rapid succession, been brought under the influence of the Gospel: so much so, indeed, that, at the present time, we do not know of any group, or any single island of importance, within 2000 miles of Tahiti, in any direction, to which the glad tidings of salvation have not been conveyed.