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Te Pito Te Henua, Or Easter Island

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Author Topic: Te Pito Te Henua, Or Easter Island  (Read 1578 times)
Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #570 on: March 22, 2010, 11:23:41 am »

This is reported to have been the home of the buccaneers, but it is impossible that they could have put up works of such magnitude. There are other ruins on the island, and also some mounds of considerable size, 12 feet high and a quarter of a mile long. On Kusai, and other islands of the group are found ruins, but those of Ponape are by far the most remarkable.

Though not properly in the province of the work, a short description by Mr. Wallace of some of the architectural wonders of Java is inserted. He estimates the date of their construction at live hundred years ago when the island was under the sway of the Hindoos.

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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #571 on: March 22, 2010, 11:23:51 am »

p. 544

The road to Wonosalem led through a magnificent forest, in the depths of which we passed a fine ruin of what appeared to have been a royal tomb or mausoleum. It is formed entirely of stone, and elaborately carved. Near the base is a course of boldly projecting blocks, sculptured in high relief, with a series of scenes which are probably incidents in the life of the defunct. These are all beautifully executed, some of the figures of animals in particular being easily recognizable and very accurate. The general design, as far as the ruined state of the upper part will permit of its being seen, is very good, the effect being given by an immense number and variety of projecting or retreating courses of squared stones in place of mouldings. The size of the structure is about 30 feet square by 20 feet high, and as the traveler comes suddenly upon it on a small elevation by the road side, overshadowed by gigantic trees, overrun with plants and creepers, and closely backed by the gloomy forest,
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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #572 on: March 22, 2010, 11:24:02 am »

he is struck by the solemnity and picturesque beauty of the scene, and is led to ponder on the strange law of progress, which looks so like retrogression, and which in so many distant parts of the world has exterminated or driven out a highly artistic and constructive race, to make room for one which, as far as we can judge is very far its interior. The number and beauty of the architectural remains in Java have never been popularly illustrated or described, and it will therefore take most people by surprise to learn that they far surpass those of Central America, perchance those of India. To give some idea of these ruins, perhaps to excite wealthy amateurs to explore them thoroughly, and to obtain by photography on accurate record of these beautiful sculptures before it is too late, I will enumerate the most important as briefly described in Sir Stanforns Raffle's History of Java.
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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #573 on: March 22, 2010, 11:24:21 am »

Near the center of Java, between the native capitals of Djoko-Kerta and Sura-Kerta, is the village of Brambanam, not far from which are abundance of ruins, the most important being the temples of Loro-Jongran and Chandi-Sewa. At Loro-Jongran there were separate buildings, six large, and fourteen small temples. They are now a mass of ruins, but the largest temple was supposed to have been 90 feet high. They were all constructed of solid stone, everywhere decorated with carvings and bas-reliefs, and adorned with numbers of statues, many of which remain entire. At Chandi-Sewa, or the "thousand temples," are many fine colossal figures. Captain Baker, who surveyed these ruins, said that he had never in his life seen such stupendous and finished specimens of human labor, and the science and taste of ages long since forgotten, crowded together in so small a compass as in this spot. They cover a span of nearly 600 feet square, and consist of an outer row of eighty-four temples; a second row of seventy-six; a third row of sixty-four, a fourth of forty-four; and a fifth forming an inner parallelogram of twenty-eight; in all two hundred

p. 545
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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #574 on: March 22, 2010, 11:24:27 am »

and ninety-six small temples disposed in five regular parallelograms. In the center is a large cruciform temple surrounded by forty flights of steps, richly ornamented with sculpture and containing many apartments.

The tropical vegetation has ruined most of the smaller temples, but some remain tolerably perfect, from which the effects of the whole may be imagined. About half a mile off is another temple, called Chandi Kali Bening, 72 feet square and 60 feet high, in fine preservation, and covered with sculptures of Hindu mythology surpassing any that exists in India. Other ruins of palaces, halls and temples, with abundance of sculptured deities, are found in the same neighborhood.

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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #575 on: March 22, 2010, 11:24:39 am »

About 80 miles eastward, in the province of Kedu, is the great temple of Borobods. It is built upon a small hill, and consists of a central dome and seven ranges of terraced wall, covering the slope of the hill, forming open galleries, each below the other, and communicating by steps and gateways. The central dome is 50 feet in diameter; around it is a triple circle of seventy-two towers; and the whole building is 620 feet square and about 100 feet high. In the terraced walls are niches containing cross-legged figures larger than life, to the number of about four hundred; both sides of the terraced walls are covered with bas-reliefs crowded with figures carved in hard stone, which must therefore occupy an extent of nearly 3 miles in length.

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« Reply #576 on: March 22, 2010, 11:24:51 am »

The amount of human labor and skill expended upon the great pyramids of Egypt, sink into insignificance when compared with that required to complete this sculptured hill temple in the interior of Java.

About 40 miles southwest of Samarang, on a mountain called Junong Prau, an extensive plateau is covered with ruins. To reach the temples, four flights of stone steps were made up to the mountain from opposite directions, each flight containing more than a thousand steps. Traces of nearly four hundred temples have been found here and many (perhaps all) were decorated with rich and delicate sculptures. The whole country between this and Brambanam, a distance of 60 miles, abounds with ruins, so that fine sculptured figures may be seen lying in ditches, or built into the walls of inclosures.

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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #577 on: March 22, 2010, 11:25:02 am »

In the eastern part of Java, at Kediri, and in Melang, there are equally abundant traces of antiquity, but the buildings themselves have been mostly destroyed; sculptured figures, however, abound, and the ruins of forts, palaces, baths, aqueducts, and temples can be everywhere traced.

The ruins of the ancient city of Majapahit cover miles of ground with paved roads, walls, tombs, and gateways, while sculptures of Hindu gods and goddesses of hard trachytic rock are found in the forests or in situ in temples. Some of the buildings are of brick of curious construction; the bricks are burned and built together without cement, and yet adhere incomprehensibly.

p. 546

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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #578 on: March 22, 2010, 11:25:17 am »

Footnotes
540:1 These genealogies, although widely known and generally admitted to be true, have received the special investigation of some of the missionaries. The Rev. Shirley Baker, now premier of Tonga, assures us that there is no reason to doubt them, and that on the other hand there are many reasons for accepting them as absolute truth.

541:1 In 1867, the French purchased the sovereignty of this little island for a gallon of rum and some old clothes, thus cutting out a prospective American Steam-ship Company that had fixed upon it for a coal depot. Coal is found herein small quantities, and this fact has been adduced in support of the theory of a submerged continent in the Pacific, a fallacy evident to the geologist. Although there are several bays, a landing may be made at any point owing to the remarkable smoothness of the sea. The people bear a close resemblance to the New Zealanders.

543:1 From Wallace's "Australia".



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #579 on: March 29, 2010, 01:12:10 pm »

LANGUAGE--VOCABULARY
The natives reckoned their time, and in fact do so still by moons or months, commencing the year with August, which was, according to the traditions, the time when Hotu-Matua and his followers landed upon the island.

The following corresponds nearly to the English months set opposite:

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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #580 on: March 29, 2010, 01:12:18 pm »

Anekena
 August.
 
Hora-iti (little summer)
 September.
 
Hora-nui (big summer)
 October.
 
Tangarouri
 part of November.
 
Kotuti
 November and December.
 
Ruti
 December and January.
 
Koro
 January.
 
Tuaharo
 February.
 
Tetnupu
 March
 
Tarahau
 April.
 
Vaitu-nui (big winter)
 May.
 
Vaitu-poto (short winter)
 June.
 
Maro or Temaro
 July.
 


 

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Jennifer Murdoch
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« Reply #581 on: March 29, 2010, 01:12:35 pm »

The natives have recently divided the months into weeks, giving to the days the names of First day (Raa-po-tahi), Second day (Raa-po-rua), Third day (Raa-po-toru), etc. The week is commenced on Monday in order to bring the seventh day on Sunday.

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« Reply #582 on: March 29, 2010, 01:12:44 pm »

The month is divided into two equal portions, the first beginning with the new moon, and the second with the full moon. The calendar at the time of our visit to the island ran about as follows, the new moon being full on November 26.

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« Reply #583 on: March 29, 2010, 01:12:56 pm »

Kokore tahi (first Kokore)
 November 27
 
Kokore rua (second Kokore)
 November 28
 
Kokore toru (third Kokore)
 November 29
 
Kokore hâ (fourth Kokore)
 November 30
 
Kokore rima (fifth Kokore)
 December 1
 
Kokore ono (sixth Kokore)
 December 2
 
Maharu, first quarter
 December 3
 
Ohua
 December 4
 
Otua
 December 5
 
Ohotu
 December 6
 
Maure
 December 7
 
Ina-ira
 December 8
 
Ra Kau
 December 9
 
Omotohi, full moon
 December 10
 
Kokore tahi (first Kokore)
 December 11
 
Kokore rua (second Kokore)
 December 12
 
Kokore toru (third Kokore)
 December 13,
 
Kokore hâ (fourth Kokore)
 December 14
 
Kokore rima (fifth Kokore)
 December 15
 
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« Reply #584 on: March 29, 2010, 01:13:08 pm »

Tapume
 December 16
 
Matua
 December 17
 
Orongo, first quarter
 December 18
 
Orongo taane
 December 19
 
Mauri nui
 December 20
 
Marui Kero
 December 21
 
Omutu
 December 22
 
Tueo
 December 23
 
Oata
 December 24
 
Oari, new moon
 December 25
 
Kokore tahi (first Kokore)
 December 26
 
Etc., etc., etc.
 
 


 

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