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PUBLISHED WEEKLV, AT HONOLULU, OAIIU, SANDWICH ISLANDS.
j. JAUVES, Editor.
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10, 1840.
Vol. 1. No. IS.
COM M DMC ATKK.
flieSavijyaloi' r Samoa is-
IjwU Their Manner!, Customs, and
nerstitions. By T. 1 loath , Man'ono.
(Concluded from p:ic(5.)
List of birds,
The following list will enable tho resi-
. .. ..t'uii- irriiMIW 4ft 11 1 11 iri 1 In-ill-!
I1 ';!S ill lHllv-1 -v wu.'uii, iiiviio .
I a wood pigeon.
Mail alii, a long-legged bird, a favorite
1 .1 I . A
Mmi m?i' a ;ir rcd ani1 wmtc uiru,
" with red lull.
T.ivaV, u large bird, web-footed.
i":;lni a large bird, 1 rm of a pigeon.
a la "go black bird lives on
hut nests in ine ninumains.
Ti ;ii mo i, ) nearly the appearance ol the
Tii Uiitifa, i g'g.
Mum u:i, do. and is gregarious.
u i o, a bird as large as a swan, makes its
appearance in storms.
A a!:i, a similar bird, comes in storms.
Pima'i, nsts in ground has a red bill.
They 'make 'i drum, ly hollowing out a
part of ;i tree, and call it the nafa.
Thoy have also the pulotu or faa-alii,
a club-shaped instrument with a loose
slab fitted into a groove, on which slab
they beat with two sticks.
Inev make a llute ffaj:ufaru of the
Thus, according to the Sainoans, ina.M
was produced. As to his condition be
selves on their husband being killed.
At the death of relatives or chiefs,
yoml the grave they were; completely in great wailings were made, and the mourn
the dark, borne spirits they thought di-
1. I .4 .1 1
ed, some lived. home said tney live
and work in a dark subterraneous abode,
and are eaten bv the gods. Others be-
bamboo cane, but it is little more than allieved that, after death, human spirits be
came aitus or inferior gods, and that the
spirits of the chiefs went to Pulotu, the
child s toy.
'PI i. vi . r .... . r
j uu iiiiu may no saui oi a siring oi
iia, a large blaefc bird.
parallel pipes', gradually increasing in
length, which it is said was introduced
froni the Fiji Islands.
Theogony, Cosmogony, and Supersti
tions. Their great god is Tagaloa-lagi, who,
(they say,), made the heavens and the
earth. Three other principal deities are,
Siulco, who is said to have the tail of a; them, as if leading them, it w;;
fish, but the mouth 'of a ,man, and is the !0f sueci ss if in a contrary d
god who presides over war ; vJna-lanua.a
Elisium of some of the Polynesians. They
sav this is to the westward, but that is all
they know. Does not this opinion dimly
indicate the point of compass whence
thoy came ?
From among their omens, we select the
following : The matu'u, or stork, was one
of the Manono gods. If, when they were
proceeding to war, the matu'u Hew before
as a token
ers were iiccusiomeu nom to scratch and
burn their bodies as tokens of grief. The
females also sometimes pricked holes in
the stomach and bowels of the deceased,
and actually sucked out the liquids.
The body is seldom kept more than one
night. It is wrapped in native cloth and
put, if the family can afford it, into a
small canoe for a cofiin. Long harangues
were made over the graves of chiefs.
After the body had lain in the grave
some time, they would take up the skull
and place it in a box and preserve it. This
was especially done on the approach of
war, when thev feared their enemies would
not respect the sanctity of the grave.
The bodies of a few chiefs were prc-
Tiio bat and the owl arc sometimes
eaten, bat not otten.
The s U iusjI in H;unoin.
Dancing was the most common, but
t t i i
ttiicn it was Known to ue productive oi
licentiousness and crime, the missionaries
took seasonable opportunities of pointing
oTit the wickedness of the usual, attend
ants and consequences, and refused to
baptize those who frequented the dances.
By the majority, therefore, of those who
have embraced Christianity, they have
Ik-si abandoned. To those who mav sav,
"There ! sec how these missionaries de
prive the people of their amusements,"
it perhaps may be enough to say that
these dunces were held in the night that
they seldom danced long before several
"I" both sexes threw off their slight wrap-
ins and danced naked, and that fornica
tion, adultery and elopements arc the frc
fne dance is accompanied by the bcat-
of time on a stitV mat, by chanting
Wis, generally indecent ones, in which
the voices of the males and females arc
alternately heard, and also by the clap
ping of hands bv the dancers. The lat
fraction is also perfoimcd so as to beat
They have also-a play like the English
morris dance, in which men caper about
with short sticks in their hands, which
they mutually strike.
Sham club fights and wrestlings arc
also common, but they generally are so
much in earnest, that broken limbs and
broken heads and teeth are very common
I be catching of pigeons, and teaching
th( in to lly and return to the hand, are
Vfry common and innocent amusements
among the chiefs.
koine. of those of the young people
foiubinc instruction with amusement;
Slll'h as lifting stones with fishing lines,
t" accustom them to raise the fish expe
ditiously and gracefully to the left hand.
'so the sailing of small canoes in order
to train them to manage the large ones.
Their musical instruments arc few, and
are far from making good music to a for
tyn car. Vet when thev beat them in
annexion with their chanting, it is almost
"npossible to avoid falling into ttn ngrcca
''ly melancholy mood,
female deity v ho assists in war ; and Ta
ma fa iga, who entices men to war.
All worshipped these, in addition to
which each district had its protecting god
in war, and each family one for protection
in afllictiou, tfce. Some of them wor
shipped the sun and "moon and rainbow.
Mafue is the god of earthquakes and
the originator of fire.
Sale fee holds up tho earth.
Mesua is the god whose shadow is the
whirlwind ; Faaana's shadow is the rain ;
Lamamau's the rainbow; of Tinitini and
Mat i fan the lightning.
The island of Pulotu, to the westward,
is deemed the residence of the inferior f
gods, but Tangaloa resides in the highest
heaven. They never invoked the name
of the latter except at their public assem
blies, but they daily poured out ava to him
together with their other gods.
These various gods they believed pos
sessed certain animals, birds, fish and rep
tiles, when the animal was chosen for that
purpose, and they worshipped them ac
cordingly. But they had very few ima
ges or inanimate objects of worship. A
branch of .bamboo set upright, with a
was an ill omen. A come
hurricane, or home' other serious calamity.
Soon after the last comet a dreadful storm
i blew down all their trees and houses.
If the moon be dim, or Venus very
bright, the death of a chief was betoken
ed. The rainbow is a sign of war and
The squeaking of rats is also an iufor
tunate omen. So, also, snqezing. On
hearing it they say, "If a god, let live ;
if a man, let die.," If one sneezed on a
journey, they user! to go no further that
day,' thinking it unpropitious. It appears
from a passage in Pdshop Hall's "Devout
Soul," that a similar superstition formerly
prevailed in Europe.
Miscellaneous Customs and Opinions.
A common' method of execration, or
cursing, is to wish the party may be eaten
by some aitu (spirit.) Another, that
their tongue may be baked.
At the birth of a child the household
gods of the. family, and other gods, were
earnestly invoked. The name of the one
last invoked, at the moment of birth, was
given to the child. Until the name was giv
en, the child was called "the excrement of
y direction, it j served, having been prepared by oil and
et indicates arlient. Tho writer has seen two which
bunch of the cocoanut fibres tied at the (the gods." The navel string was, placed on
top, w'as worshipped by part of Manono, ja war chib and cut, upon which the opc
a sacred stone by another district, alid j rator thus addressed the infant, "Po thou
some families had roughly carved wood-j a brave warrior, mayest thou dance well."
en idols, as .representations of deceased I This exactly indicates the two things in
chiefs, to whom they paid religious horn- which they chiefly de lighted. The nave
- . .1 i . . . . ,
Creation of the Would.
Of the creation they give a very minute
and circumstantial account, with which
we may ut some other time amuse our
readers. "At -present the following lead
ing facts must suffice.
Tangaloa sent clown his daughter, the
bird Tuli, (a kind of snipe) to see what
sort of place there was below. She saw
nothing but sea. She returned and told
her father who rolled a stone down from
heaven, and thence sprung the island. of
Savaii ; another stone, whence sprung
Upolu,and so of the rest.
Then Tuli returned and asked for in
habitants. He told her to plant the fue
fue,(wild vine)vhen the plants grew they
were ordered to be pulled up and thrown
in heaps. Hence grew worms. Two of
these worms were selected and Na'io, one
of tho spirits, marked one of them with
the different limbs, &C, of the male, and
on the other those of the female. Then
Tangaloa sent two spirits, by bis daughter
to the worms, and they became human,
string was, then-buried under that part of
the house where they performed their
Maiiriage. One method of courtship
is for the young man to go and sleep and
cat :vt the house of the young lady ; per
haps several times, and, if a chief, accom
panied by a train of attendants. If the
family show a fnendlv fee ling, and cat
with him, his addresses are favorably re
ceived. But the formal offer is made by
sending a large present to the family of
the female. If accepted the match is
made; if refused the courtship is at an
end: for it .-seldom happens that the par
ties themselves decide the matter. The
parents or other relatives expect the young
folks to fall in with their 'rehemes. The
wives are, in fact, often purchased. The
had been preserved for thirty years. They
were nearly perfect, but part of the cheeks
had rotted away and the place had been
supplied by a clayey substance.
They sometimes made images as mon
uments of the dead. It was also a cus
tom to weep at their graves, and to pray
At funerals, presents are generally
made by all the other relatives to that
family in which the party died.' These,
however, are generally in part divided
Fiiist Fruits. When the yams are
ripe, (in January or February,) the prac
tice formerly was to present those first got
up to the aitus or spirits, arid a portion
to the chief. And the same with the
bread fruit first plucked.
The Christian party now generally
make a similar present to the missionary.
Drink Offerings. When ava was
prepared on formal occasions, the first cup
was poured out te the gods.
Allotment of Lands. The land is
apportioned and fenced out, and each
family has its portion. The eldest son
or brother who succeeds a deceased own
er, is looked up to as the leader, but the
family appear to en joy the land in common.
If a sale lakes place the transaction is
at a public meeting. When the agree
ment is made the parties strike their staffs
into the ground, and dig up or turn aside
some of the soil. Each says, "There! I
dig up the malac." On which the spec
tators say, "The agreement is buried ;"
Compliments. Of these the Samoan
language is full, and the extent to which
they arc carried certainly indicates that
they have descended from some polished
nation. Thev have a dialect for the chiefs
(or rather addressed to the chiefs) alto
gether different from the common one.
All their actions and all the parts of their
bodies have names different from those of
the people. To the highest chiefs very
great deference is paid by their inferiors,
both by the mode of address and the bow
in down of the body. It is also very ill
mannered to pass close by or touch a chief.
If a chief is about to set out on a jour-
malo party have also been in the habit of noy, he expects any friend who meets
taking from the conquered such wives as him to lay his hand on his (the chiefs,)
they chose. Vet with all these disadvan
tages many couple appear to live very hap
pily together, and many instances of very
stiong attachment occur. Wives have
bceih known voluntarily to airifi'c them-
bre ast, as a token of good wishes.
One of the most interesting specimens
of their manners of this cdass, i the con
duct ed' the ladies at their large fonos or
public assemblies. When the food is