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LATE VOYAGES AND TRAVELS.
(Lond. Lit. Gaz.) SOORTAL OF A SECOND VOYAGE for the Discovery of a North-west Passage from the Allan
tic to the Pacific ; performed in the Years 1821-22-23, in H. Mi's Ships Fury and Hecla, under the Orders of Captain Parry. London, 1824. W HEN this Expedition, upon the and not, we lament to say, the better
fate of which so intense an inter- for their intercourse. They were est had bung in the public mind, hap- greedy barterers, and not very honest; pily returned to our shores, we were though only one instance was remarkfortunately enabled to lay before our ed of their endeavouring to swerve readers a very full and accurate detail from a bargain after they had licked of its leading incidents and discoveries. (their usual custom) the article receivOur Gazettes, containing these ac- ed in traffic, and thus, as it were, ratificounts, where bought up with an eager. ed the exchange. ness which showed the extent of the Capt. Parry states that they 6 poscuriosity and the feelings that existed sessed in an eminent degree the dispoabout our gallant navigators ;* and we sition to steal all they could lay their rejoice to observe that the present vol- hands on, which has almost universalome is well calculated, in every way, to ly been imputed to every tribe of satisfy the wish for still more ample and Esquimaux bitherto visited by Europescientific information upon the subject. ans. They tried, more than once, the
The numerous Charts, and admira- art of picking our pockets, and were as ble Engravings by Finden, from draw- bold and unembarrassed as ever, imings by Captain Lyon, are superior to mediately after detection. It is imany illustrations of the kind within our possible to describe the horribly disknowledge, and greatly assist us in gusting manner in wbich they sat completing our ideas of the natives down, as soon as they felt bungry, to wbom the voyagers encountered, and eat their raw blubber, and to suck the their mode of living; while the text, in oil remaining on the skins we had just a methodical and well-digested manner, emptied, the very smell of which, as places clearly before us the principal well as the appearance, was to us alevents of an attempt which, if not emi- most insufferable. The disgust which pently successful, did not fail for want our seamen could not help expressing of proper care in the outfit and perse at this sight seemed to create in the verance in the execution.
Esquimaux the most malicious amuseThe work commences with an In- ment; and when our people turned troduction, which describes the liberal away literally unable to bear the sight and judicious equipment of the ships, without being sick, they would, as a and their provisioning for three years. good joke among themselves, run after Then follow the Official Instructions. them holding out the blubber or raw
Completely prepared at all points seal's flesh, dripping with oil and filth, and for all circumstances, the vessels as if inviting them to partake of it. sailed in May 1821, accompanied by Both the men and women were guilty ibe Nautilus transport; and on the 2d of still more disgusting indecencies, of July, having previously uploaded which seemed to afford them amazing and dismissed that auxiliary carrier, diversion. A worse trait even than they were off Resolution Island at the all these was displayed by two women Mouth of Hudson's Straits. On the alongside the Hecla, who, in a manner 16th, they sent their last letters to Eng- too unequivocal to be understood, ofland by a whaler; and within five fered to barter their children for some days were visited by a tribe of Esqui- article of trifling value, beginning very
cox belonging to the Savage Islands deliberately to strip them of their in these Straits. These people were clothes, which they did not choose to however acquainted with Europeans, consider as included in the intended * See our last vol. p. 236. 291,
“ Upon the whole it was impossible suing winter, when obliged to relinfor us not to receive a very unfavoura- quish further operations for the season. ble impression of the general beha- Above all, however, I derived the most viour, and moral character, of the na- sincere satisfaction from a conviction tives of this part of Hudson's Strait, of having left no part of the coast from who seem to have acquired, by an an- Repulse Bay eastward in a state of nual intercourse with our ships for doubt as to its connexion with the connearly a hundred years, many of the tinent. And as the mainland now in vices which unhappily attend a first in- sight from the hills extended no farther tercourse with the civilized world, with. to the eastward than about a NNE. out having imbibed any of the virtues bearing, we ventured to indulge a sanor refinements which adorn and render guine hope of our being very near the it happy."
north-eastern boundary of America, Proceeding up Hudson's Straits to and that the early part of the next seathe head, the Expedition was entirely son would find us employing our best baffled in endeavouring, through every efforts in pushing along its northern inlet, to penetrate to the Polar Sea by shores." any opening to the north of Southamp- In their winter's abode they found ton Island. It thus lost the season, that the apparatus for heating between amongst a few unimportant bays and decks answered every expectation ; creeks, to which names were given, and, to kill the time," besides killand of which the only consequence is, ing foxes, hares, &c. &c. they estabthat future trials in that direction need lished a theatre for dramatic represennot be made. The non-existence of a tations once a fortnight; had occasionpassage through Repulse Bay, was de- al concer' ; and for a better purpose, termined.
a regular school, and Divine service The vessels now returned towards every Sunday, in common to both the East ; several boat-expeditions ships. But the grand resource from were attempted, and they finally were ennui was the visit of a tribe of Esquilaid up in winter quarters, at a very maux in the month of February; and short distance to the north of their though in our former numbers, may be summer's labours.
read many particulars of these harm« In reviewing (the author sums up) less creatures, we are convinced that the events of this our first season of the following extracts, put together navigation, and considering what pro- from the whole of Captain Parry's segress we had made towards the attain- parate observations, will aftord as ment of our main object, it was impos- much entertainment as any portion sible, however trilling that progress of his Work which we could condense might appear upon the chart, not to into our first notice of it into one Numexperience considerable satisfaction. ber. Small as our actual advance had been We will introduce them as Seal-huntowards Behring's Strait, the extent of ters and Seal-eaters : coast newly discovered and minutely 6 The party we at first joined were explored in pursuit of our object, in seated on a high hummock of ice, with the course of the last eight weeks, their spears in their hands, looking out amounted to more than eight hundred for seals. After we had talked to them leagues, nearly half of which belonged for a few minutes, Okotook suddenly to the continent of North America. started up and set off along the edge of This service, notwithstanding our con- the ice, without giving us or his comstant exposure to the risks which intri- panions the least warning. The latter cate, shoal, and unknown channels, a seemed so much accustomed to this, sea loaded with ice, and a rapid tide that they took no further notice than concurred in presenting, had providen- by immediately following bim, and we tially been effected without injury to did the same; the whole party walkthe ships, or suffering to the officers ing at a very quick rate, and the naand men; and we had now once more tives keeping their heads constantly met with tolerable security for the en- turned towards the sea to look out for seals. After being thus engaged for running two knots to the northward, an hour and a half, we judged, from and as the ice on which we stood had the motions of a party at some distance been formed only within the last fortbeyond us, that they had game in view. night, and a sheet as substantial as this As we approached them, Okotook evi- had before been carried away by the dently began to be apprehensive that stream, it was impossible not to feel we, who did not understand the matter, some apprehension lest we might thus would spoil their sport. To prevent be detached from the shore, an acci. this, he did the most civil thing that dent that has been known to happen could well have been devised, which to Esquimaux ere now, and has prowas, to send bis companions, one by bably more frequently befallen thein, one to the spot, and to remain with us when none have survived to tell the tale. himself, keeping us at such a distance " As we returned towards the land, as to allow us to see their proceedings, we came to a small rising on the level without alarming the animal they were surface of the floe not larger than a in pursuit of. The other seven Esqui- common mole-bill, and of much the maux now forming one party, disposed same shape, at which one of the Esquithemselves into a single line, so as to maux immediately stopped. His commake as small an appearance as possi- panions, still walking on, called us ble in the direction in which they were away, explaining that what we saw was going, and in this manner crept very the work of a seal, and that it was procautiously towards the margin of the bable the animal was about to comfiloe. On a sudden they all stooped plete his hole and to come up on the down quite low, to hide themselves, ice, in which case the man would en
hour, during which time they prepared man at the hole, however, with a glass, their lines and spears; and then, when for more than half an hour, observing the animal appeared to be intercepted him constantly putting his head down from their view, again took the oppor- towards the ice, as if in the act of listunity of gaining a few paces on hiin tening for the seal, but without otherin the same cautious manner as before. wise changing his position; after which, When they had been thus occupied for he followed us on board without success. a full hour, alternately creeping and “ If, however, a man has any reastooping down, the seal which had son to suppose that a seal is at work been lying on the ice took the water, beneath, he immediately attaches himand they then gave up their chase. self to the place, and seldom leaves it During this time, Okotook could scarce- till he has succeeded in killing the anily restrain his impatience to be nearer mal. For this purpose, he first builds the scene of action ; and when we pro- a snow-wall about four feet in height, duced a spy-glass, which appeared to to shelter him from the wind, and, bring his companions close to us, he seating himself under the lee of it, debad oot words to express his surprise posits his spear, lines, and other imand satisfaction. In a short time he held plements upon several little forked it as steadily as we did, and explained sticks inserted into the snow, in order by signs every motion he observed to prevent the smallest noise being
seal they had been watching, the whole But the most curious precaution to the party seemed with one accord to turn same effect consists in tying his own their steps homeward, in which direc- knees together, with a thong, so securetion, being that of the ships also, we ly as to prevent any rustling of his were by this time not sorry to accom- clothes which might otherwise alarm pany them. We were now between the animal. In this situation, a man ihree and four miles north-east of the will sit quietly sometimes for hours toships, and full a mile and a half from gether, attentively listening to any any part of the shore. In the open noise made by the seal, and sometimes water beyond the floe, the tide was using the hicipkultuk, an instrument
99 ATIIENEUM VOL. I. 2d scrics.
hereafter described, in order to ascer- the legs of the men and women, pretain whether the animal is still at work senting its mouth for a large lump of below. When he supposes the hole to raw flesh, just as an English child of be nearly completed, he cautiously lifts the same age might do for a piece of his spear, to which the line has been sugar-candy. Every now and then alpreviously attached, and as soon as the so a dog would make his way towards blowing of the seal is distinctly heard, the reeking carcass, and when in the and the ice consequently very thin, he act of seizing upon some delicate part, drives it into him with the force of was sent off yelping by a heavy blow both arms, and then cuts away with his with the handles of the knives. When panna the remaining crust of ice, to all the flesh is disposed of, for a portion enable him to repeat the wounds and of which each of the women from the get him out. The neitiek is the only other huts usually brings her ootkooseal killed in this manner, and, being seek, the blubber still remains attached the smallest, is held, while struggling, to the skin, from which it is separated either simply by hand, or by putting the last; and the business being now
stuck into the ice. For the oguke, are rolled up and laid by, together the line is passed round the 'man's leg with the store of flesh and blubber. or arm ; and for a walrus, round his During the dissection of their seals, body, bis feet being at the same time they have a curious custom of sticking firmly set against a hummock of ice, in a thin filament of skin, or of some part which position these people can from of the intestines, upon the foreheads of habit hold against a very heavy strain. the boys, who are themselves extremeBoys of fourteen or fifteen years of age ly fond of it, it being intended, as Ilig. consider themselves equal to the killing liuk afterwards informed me, to make of a neitiek, but it requires a full-grown them fortunate seal-catchers. person to master either of the larger « The seals which they take during animals. -.
the winter are of two kinds, the Neitiek, ...“ After distributing a number or small seal (phoca hispida,) and the of presents in the first four huts, I Oguke, or large seal (phoca barbata.) found on entering the last that Pootoo- These and the Ei-u-ek, or Walrus, alook had been successful in bringing constiute their means of subsistence at in a seal, over which two elderly won this season; but, on this particular men were standing, armed with large part of the coast, the latter are not very knives, their hands and faces besmear- abundant and they chiefly catch the
tion depicted on their countenances. seen dissected was of that kind, and They had just performed the first ope- and with young at the time. A small ration of dividing the animal into two one taken out of it had a beautiful skin, parts, and thus laying open the intes- which, both in softness and colour, very tines. These being taken out and all much resembled raw silk; but no inthe blood carefully baled up and put ducement could make Pootooalook into the ootkooseek, or cooking-pot, part with it, he having destined it for over the fire, they separated the head that night's supper. .. and flippers from the carcass and then ...« Toolooak having been condivided the ribs. All the loose scraps cerned in killing one of the seals just were put into the pot for immediate brought in, it fell to his mother's lot to use, except such as the two butchers dissect it, the neitiek being the only now and then crammed into their own animal which the women are permitted months, or distributed to the numerous to cut up. We had therefore an opand eager by-standers for still more portunity of seeing this filthy operation immediate consumption of these once more performed, and entirely by morsels the children came in for no the old lady herself, who was soon up small share, every little urchin that to her elbows in blood and oil. Becould find its way to the slaughter- fore a knife is put into the animal, as house, running eagerly in and between it lies on its back, they pour a little water into its mouth, and touch each markably distinguished. A few of the dipper and the middle of the belly women learned several of our names, with a little lamp-black and oil taken and I believe all thought us Angekoks* from the under part of the lamp. What of a very superior class, when we rebenefit was expected from this prepa- peated to them all round, by the assis. ratory ceremony we could not learn, tance of our books, the names of all but it was done with a degree of super- their husbands, obtained on board the stitious care and seriousness that be preceding day." spoke its indispensable importance. This female even drew maps for The boys came eagerly into the but as them; but in the end, like most ladies usual, and held out their foreheads for who are spoiled, she changed much for the old women to stick the charms up- the worse : on them; and it was not till now that “I am (our gallant Captain confess. we learned from Iligliuk the efficacy of es) however compelled to acknowledge this very useful custom. As soon as that, in proportion as the superior unthis dirty operation was at an end, derstanding of this extraordinary wo. during which the numerous bystanders man became more and more developamused themselves in chewing the in- ed, her head (for what female head is testines of the seal, the strangers retir- indifferent to praise !) began to be turned to their own huts, each bearing a ed with the general attention and numsmall portion of the flesh and blubber, berless presents she received. The while our hosts enjoyed a hearty meal superior decency and even modesty of of boiled meat and hot gravy soup. her behaviour had combined, with her Young Sioutkuk ate at least three intellectual qualities, to raise her in our pounds of solid meat in the first three estimation far above her companions ; hours after our arrival at the huts, be- and I often heard others express what sides a tolerable proportion of soup, all I could not but agree in, that for lliwhich his mother gave him whenever gliuk alone, of all the Esquimaux wohe asked it without the smallest re- men, that kind of respect could be enmark of any kind. We now found tertained which modesty in a female that they depended on catching seals never fails to command in our sex. alone for subsistence, there being no Thus regarded, she had always been valruses in this neighbourhood. As freely admitted into the ships, the they were several miles from any open quarter-masters at the gangway never water, their mode of killing them was thinking of refusing entrance to the entirely confined to watching for the wise woman' as they called her. animals coming up in the holes they Whenever any explanation was necesmake through the ice.”
sary between the Esquimaux and us, Of all the Esquimaux, a woman Higliuk was sent for quite as an internamed Iligliuk was the most intelli- preter; information was chiefly obgent. Nearly at the beginning of her tained through her, and she thus found intimaey with our countrymen, Capt. herself rising into a degree of con. P. relates,
sequence to wbich, but for us she could ..." She favoured us with a song,
never had attained. Notwithstanding and struck us as having a remarkably a more than ordinary share of good
fondness for singing, for there was be wondered at if she became giddy scarcely any stopping her when she with her exaltation, assuming certain had once begun. We had, on their airs which, though infinitely diversified first visit to the ships, remarked this in their operation according to circumtrait in Iligliuk's disposition, when she stances, perhaps universally attend a too was listening for the first time to the sudden accession of good fortune in eve
ed never to have enough ; and almost poles. The consequence was that every day she now began to display Iligliuk was soon spoiled ; considered some symptom of that superiority of her admission into the ships and most understanding for which she was so re
* Sorcerers or wizards.