Page:The aborigines of Australia.djvu/119

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.


106 THE ABORIGINES OF AUSTRALIA.

of wonder which the Europeans were enabled to show. To this the chief consented, and accompanied the Governor alone for that purpose. On approaching close to the beach, however, where the tents were erected, and where he beheld all the soldiers of the expedition drawn up under arms, his confidence partially forsook him, and suddenly standing, he gazed for a few moments at the scene before him, and then glancing behind in the direction of his friends and countrymen, and seeing that he had now approached too far to retreat, he commenced a most animated harangue in his native tongue, in which, judging by his looks and gestures, he gave the Governor to understand that if any treachery were practised towards him his people would revenge him in the most signal manner on the entire colony. Having thus entered his protest against any unfair dealing, and having cautioned those in whose power he found himself placed against the consequences of any act of theirs against his life or his liberty, he advanced with his former boldness within the lines of the camp, the Governor having again assured him as best he could that no treachery was intended. He then proceeded to inspect the several strange objects which presented themselves — the muskets and accoutrements of the soldiery, the implements of the workmen, the tents, the cooking apparatus, and concluded his scrutiny by gazing anxiously for some moments into a pot in which some meat was being boiled for the mess of the people. He was finally