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CHAPTER XVIII.

1801.

A VERY PLEASANT SURPRISE.

It is some time since I have spoken of Mrs. Henry and her children, of whom you will doubtless like to hear. Mrs. Henry had been very poorly, ever since her return to Tahiti. She had suffered much from sickness of various kinds. Both she and her children also at different times had fallen down the stairs (which were probably steep and narrow) of the new house; and Mrs. Henry had been hurt a great deal. It was supposed that the pool of rain water, near the new house, injured her health. But as the old house was uncomfortable, and partly occupied, Mr. Henry, instead of remoring to it, built a little dwelling for himself close to it. The small house which Mr. Main had built for himself, and in which Idia had dwelt for a little while, had been removed by the king's order to another place at some distance. About fifty men had taken the roof, as it was, upon their shoulders, and carried it away; and others had removed the pillars.

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About this time Mrs. Henry adopted a little child. She was a year or two older than her own Sarah, and was called Nancy. She was the daughter of an Irishman named Connor. He was an ignorant man, who had been cast on the island many years before. When the missionaries first arrived, he was living in the neighbouring islands; but lately he bad removed to Tahiti with the native woman, who was his wife. Connor dressed like the savages, and wore his hair hanging loose down his back; his eyes were red from drinking ava. He could not read, and had half forgotten how to speak English, and he knew almost as little about the true God as the heathen. Yet he was not mischievous and troublesome, like most of the sailors on the island : therefore the brethren noticed him; they also tried to instruct him. Mrs. Henry felt compassion for his poor child's soul, and so she kindly undertook the charge of it.

The island continued in a state of disquietude. There was no open war, but it seemed every day ready to break out. Pomare was exceedingly enraged against the people of Atehuru, because they had stolen the image of Oro, the god of war, from the temple at Pare, and had hid it in their own part of the country. They had done this, in the hope of conquering by Oro's power, when the war should begin ;

THE KING'S REPRESENTATIVE.

155

soon,

man

for they fully believed that the god Oro sometimes entered into this log of wood. Pomare did not immediately show his anger, for he hoped that the idol would be given back to him

He even thought it necessary to behave with great respect to some, whom he knew to be his enemies. For instance, when Teohu, (a rebellious chief, who took part with the Atehuruns) visited Matavai in April, he was received with great honour by Pomare. Teohu arrived with his train of servants in a number of canoes, accompanied by two human sacrifices for Otu. As the king was absent, a adorned with a bunch of red feathers represented him, and was treated with the same respect as the king, every one uncovering his shoulders in his presence. Pomare caused a shed to be built for Teohu, while he staid at Matavai, and he made him presents of cloth, and even gave him a musket; Teohu also made presents to Pomare. Yet though their words were smoother than butter, war was in their hearts. Pomare, however, did not wish to begin the war till a boat should return, that he had sent to some neighbouring islands, to fetch pearls, and also human sacrifices.

In the end of June, the war was on the point of beginning, when an event of God's providence prevented it. It was the arrival of a ship. This ship was not a vessel used for trading,

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MR. BROOMHALL'S PERIL.

or catching whales, as all the other vessels had been, that had arrived since the Duff. It was a man of war—a ship that sailed about the seas to attack the enemies of the king of England.

Before I speak more of the visit of this ship, I must mention the present state of Mr. Broomhall. The woman he had taken to be his wife, after living with him eight months, had forsaken him. Since her departure, he had been on an excursion to the island of Eimeo with two of the seamen. On one occasion, when he was in a canoe with one of them, it upset. As neither he nor the seaman could swim, and as the place was full of sharks, it appeared probable that both would perish. At this moment, Mr. Broomhall thought, “If there be a hell, I shall certainly go to it.” He was saved from this death, and when he returned home, he mentioned to one of the brethren his feelings on that awful occasion.

But though God spared his life, his heart was not changed by the terror he had felt; for he continued as miserable, and as unbelieving as before. Yet he was very desirous of being again received by the brethren, as a friend. He began to attend their prayer-meetings; and the day before the ship arrived, he wrote them a letter, requesting them to tell him whether, if he promised to be useful to them, and attentive to study, and obedient to all their

ARRIVAL OF THE PORPOISE.

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rules, they would receive him again, though he could not profess to believe in God, Of course the brethren could not grant his desire ; but they kindly entreated him, in their answer, to go to Him, who would receive all who came; and they assured him, that when he had been accepted by Him, he would be joyfully received by them also, as a christian brother.

Such was the state of Mr. Broomhall's mind when the man-of-war arrived. This ship was called the Porpoise. It had been sent by Governor King for the purpose of buying hogs to make into salt pork, for the inhabitants of Port Jackson.

The captain brought more letters from the governor for the brethren, and for Pomare, as well as presents, among

which was a handsome scarlet dress for Pomare. Though Pomare was delighted to receive presents, he was afraid lest Otu should be affronted, if he also did not receive presents from the governor, and therefore he asked the captain to give the dress to Otu. The captain consented, but desired his men to make another dress for Pomare.

The Porpoise brought very delightful news to the brethren. It was, that a ship would shortly arrive, containing some missionaries, who would remain at Tahiti. For though the Duff had been captured, the missionaries on

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