At Sea to New Guinea, 10 June 1893

Even though we were ready to steam at 6 o’clock, we only left Selwyn Bay at 8 o’clock as fresh water had still to be sent for as we required large amounts of it to clean the corals collected yesterday.

Along the coast of San Cristoval we drove until we reached the most North-western point, Cape Recherche, where we took a South-western course towards the South-eastern cape of the Louisiade archipelago and turned towards our next destination, Port Moresby on the South coast of New Guinea.

During the whole day, the two large islands of Malaita and Guadalcanar remained visible. The latter one had mountains that rose to 2442 m, those on Malaita up to 1304 m and rich jungles. These islands remain also little explored and are inhabited by numerous fully savage tribes that are all cannibals. In this matter the inhabitants of Malaita are notorious as they even dare, driven by their lust for human meat, to cross in their small canoes from Malaita to San Cristoval at a distance of about 30 sea miles in order to attack the inhabitants of the latter island and bring them back to Malaita.

Especially during the season when religious feasts are celebrated on Malaita, the natives tend to go on manhunts in all directions. The inhabitants of Cristoval, however, recently managed to successfully defeat an attack by numerous Malaitans who suffered important losses. The fate of the Malaitans taken prisoner on Cristoval, however, must have been no less cruel than what the Cristovalans would have experienced if they had suffered defeat. The meat of the slain is cut into cubes and baked in some sort of pie made out of yams and thus served and eaten!

The weather today was exceptionally fine, a light Northern wind brought agreeable cool air which especially the occupants of starboard cabins, that is me too, could enjoy. In an extraordinarily colorful spectacle, the sun burned in the sky during sunset.


  • Location: Louisiade Islands
  • ANNO – on 10.06.1893 in Austria’s newspapers. The region of Galicia is suffering from flooding.
  • The k.u.k. Hof-Burgtheater is playing „Egmont“. The k.u.k. Hof-Operntheater is closed from 1 June to 19 July.

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