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JOURNAL OF AN EXCURSION TO THE FIVE ISLANDS AND
SHOAL HAVEN, ON THE COAST OF NEW SOUTH WALES. Saturday, Oct. 18th, 1823.-Rode 'enriched with the arborescent fern from the neighbourhood of Liver- (alsophila australis), the trunk of pool, through the district of Airds which, not growingso tall as the (in which are the small church and palm, lifted none of the beauty of its court-room of Campbell Town) to large feathery leaves out of the reach Appin, to breakfast ; and thence to of our sight. Illawarra, or the Five Islands, to At the foot of this range of moundinner, a distance of sixty miles south tains is scattered the red cedar tree, of Port Jackson. The range of the of which the colonists make their Blue Mountains, which divides the furniture, and with which they fit east coast from the western interior up the insides of their houses. It is of New South Wales, terminating a genus of cedreleæ, allied to finderwith the cliffs of the Five Island sia. The procuring of this timber coast and Shoal Haven, the road occupies many sawyers and boatmen from Appin presents the same rocky, from Port Jackson. The cedar sterile country, as the Blue Moun- planks, as they are formed by sawtain pass, and the same flora, with yers at the pit, are carried on men's the additions of the doryanthes ex- backs up to the mountain summit, celsa, or gigantic lily, and the cri- whence carts (approaching by a narnum australe: on the Five Island row road cut through the forest on beach is also found granite, as at the ridge) convey the planks to all Cox's River. Passed the source of parts of the colony, or they are cartthe Nepean River, forming a smalled to the shores of Illawarra, and cataract, under which the stream navigated to Port Jackson in large hides itself in a picturesque glen; open boats. The government have and indeed it afterwards finds a sub- not (by reason of their ample supply terraneous passage through the sandy from Hunter's River and Port Macrocks to the Cow Pastures. The quarie) secured any portion of these descent from this range of mountains cedar grounds to themselves, simply to the sea-shore is very precipitous, compelling each person to take out a grand, and even tropically luxuriant permit from the Colonial Secretary's in point of vegetation. Here may office, which must specify the numbe seen, for the first time in this co- ber of feet of timber required, and lony, the cabbage palm (corypha without which protection, the horse australis) towering above all the trees and cart, or boat, and the cedar, are of the forest, to the height sometimes liableto seizure by any constable. In a of a hundred feet, with its bunches new run in the wild forest, the sawof leaves only at the top, flabelliform, yers have to perform the preparatory peltate, round, and fan-like. These labour of clearing their path, and a trees once also characterized the fall for the trees, which would otherneighbourhood of Port Jackson ; but wise be prevented from reaching the they have long been exhausted, the ground by amazingly strong vines spungy trunks having been used for (scandent or volubilous plants). They splitting into hut-logs, and the large then pit the stem, cut into short cyleaves for thatch ; for thus simply linders of from 8 to 12 feet in length, were even the officers of the first and saw them into planks of one or fleet, the Romuluses of the colony, two inches thick. For these they lodged. The absence of these trees receive of the cartmen 22s. for every has taken away much from the tro- hundred feet, from which sum is to pical character of Sydney, which can be deducted 6s. per hundred, paid to only be restored by the garden-culti- the carrier from the pit to the cart, vation of them, together with the leaving 16s. to be divided between banana and the New Zealand bam- the pair of sawyers. The cartmen, boo, for the climate is not hot enough after carrying an average load of 300 for the cocoa-nut. The jungle sides feet in the plank upwards of 60 miles of this Illawarra Mountain were also to Paramatta, over a road, in part
182 Journal of an Excursion to the Five Islands and Shoal Haven, [Aug. very rocky and difficult, obtain 45s. over them, or hung dangling like the or 50s. per hundred feet, from builders, ropes in a belfry. The valley recarpenters, &c. It is to be regretted, minded me of Humboldt's descriptions that so few of the timbers that grow of South American vegetation. The on this mountain are known. Ex- ground was unequal to boot, so that cepting the red cedar, the wild apple travelling through the jungle was ex(achras australis), the plum (cargillia tremely difficult and fatiguing. Here australis), the sassafras (cryptocarga we first saw the seaforthia elegans, glaucescens), the rosewood, so called a palm equal in size to the cabbagefrom
scent not colour (a genus of tree, with pinnate, ferny, or cocoameleaceæ?), and the turpentine tree nut leaves, from whose broad mem(tristania albicans); the wood-cut- branous leaf-stalks, or the spathæ ters had no names for the many trees of the flowers, the natives make of gigantic growth which cover this their water-buckets, simply by tymountain.
ing up each end, like their bark Illawarra is a fine district of good canoes; in the same manner the grazing, and some excellent arable, dairy farmers make milk pails and land close to the sea-shore ; insomuch cream pans; and of the leaves they that, though distant and difficult make hats and thatch—the cedar, from Sydney by land, it was settled both white and red; and another in Governor Macquarie's time, when smaller fern-leaved palm-tree, yet he refused to let anybody go on the undescribed, of great beauty, its other side of the Nepean. As a ma- trunk more ligneous, and its leaves rine situation, it is very beautiful. more palmy, than the common arboThe Five Islands show like one large rescent fern. Our way through the and two small ones, and look pic- dark dingle crossed the same freshturesque seaward, while the back water creek fifteen times. The criground presents a line of hills, among num here re-appeared, together with which the Hat Hill of Capt. Cook a large arum. and Mount Molle are conspicuous.
In the first part of our journey,
, this Sunday, 19th October.-Rested, or day, we crossed the shallow entrance only walked over the miles of Illa- from the sea of Illawarra Lake, a warra farm, the property of David large opening a little to the south of Allan, Esq. late Commissary Gene- the Tom Thumb’s lagoon of Captain ral of the Colony, who had the merit Flinders. The lake was illustrated of setting the example of settling the by natives in their canoes, looking Five Island district. The creek ra- very characteristic and beautiful, vines still presented a tropical luxu- now that the progress of English ciriance of vegetation-palms, ferns, vilization has disarmed this part of and vines, or parasitical trees, the the coast of those savage dangers, last festooning and twining their with which it threatened Captain branches in all
directions, and great. Flinders and Mr. Bass, when they ly relieving the tall leafless monotony were here in the Tom Thumb open of the gum-trees. Epidendra also boat. The view was so picturesquem built their nests among them, the the lake, the hills, and the Indians, asplenium nidus, the acrostichum al- “ the spirit of them all,”-as to decicorne, and the dendrobium æmu- serve a painter. Our route admitted lum. There is also a large-leaved of two or three long gallops along the tree, the slightest touch of which sands, which afforded great reliefs to brings away hairs like cowhage: it the tedium of the forest paths and is an undescribed species of urtica. the fatigue of the jungle. Although
Monday, 20th October.-Rode to we set out almost at sun-rise, yet it Shoal Haven, thirty-six miles still was nearly sun-set before we arrived further to the south, six or seven of at Shoal Haven, where Mr. Alexanwhich were through a mass of vege- der Berry has taken his grant of land, tation, requiring pioneers to pene- on either side of the Shoal Haven trate it. The vines or lianas wreathed river. This is the gentleman who the trees, like the boa constrictor, first learnt at New Zealand the fate and festooned the way, as if they of the ship Boyd, which was cut off were placed for one of Astley's by the savages in the year 1809, and equestrians to leap from the horse who brought away the very few sur
vivors of that massacre.* He has, ever extends the settling of New since his final settling in this colony, South Wales further than any body explored the geology of this coast, has gone before him, is a benefactor with great ardour, from Port Ste- to the colony. I am afraid, in this phens to Jervis's Bay, and read be- case, that Man has taken possession fore the Philosophical Society of the before Nature has done her work. colony an excellent paper upon the Immense swamps and lagoons have subject.
only been just left by the sea, and. Thursday, 21st October.–Ascended the forest land is yet indifferent for with Mr. Berry the mountain called grazing; but, though the cedar by the natives Coolingatta, under grounds end before Shoal Haven, the which he is building his house. From sea is open for any exportable prothis considerable, but well-grassed, duce that can be raised on patches of eminence, we saw, as in a map, the alluvial soil, on the alternate prosea, the river, and the coast, from jecting points of the river; and Mr. Cape George, which is the south Berry need not be alarmed lest any head of Jervis's Bay, to Black Head occupation of the immediate back or Point Bass of Captain Flinders, a country should shut in his cattle-run. fine point of grazing land (some of it Returned to Illawarra this day, naturally clear), which we had pass, though very rainy and stormy. Overed in our way the day before, includ- took some natives, the women (as is ing Bowen Island off the Bay, Crook usual among all savages) carrying Haven (the Shoal Haven of the the children and baggage, and the charts) and Shoal Haven River. The men nothing but a spear and a firemist prevented us from seeing the brand. The men led our horses Pigeon House Hill of Captain Cook, through the difficulties, while we disstill further to the south ward. The mounted, and both men and women entrance of Shoal Haven River from kept up with our horses a whole the sca is dangerous even for boats, stage, upon the promise of sharing our and that of Crook Haven, three miles luncheon at the end of it. to the southward, or the real Shoal Wednesday, 22 October. - Rested Haven of Flinders, is not very safe. this morning, and in the evening One of the arms of Shoal Haven is went to see the natives fish by torchseparated from Shoal Haven River light. They make torches of bundles by an isthmus not a hundred and of bark, beaten and tied up, and with fifty yards broad; and across this the light of these, scare the bream Mr. Berry has cut a eanal, being the into motion that lie among the rocky first canal in Australia. “ The land shallows, when they either spear at the back of Shoal Haven (says he), them with the fiz-gig, or drag them and south of the river, is low and from under their hiding-places with swampy, so as in some places to be the hand, bite their heads, and throw incapable of producing trees. There them high and dry on the shore. The is, however, a more elevated border sight is very novel and picturesque along the immediate bank of the the torch being flashed in one hand river;" and this he has cultivated. and the spear poised in the other He has been up the river more than though there were but few natives twenty miles, when he was stopped here at this time, the majority being by a long rapid. At this place the absent feasting upon a whale which river was about a hundred and fifty chance had thrown upon the coast. yards wide, and was flowing perhaps The Indians, however, by no means double that distance over small was attribute this to chance, but to the ter-worn stones, which it hardly co- kind providence of the spirits of their vered. The tide flows thus far, fathers, whom they believe to be which may be considered the termi- transformed into porpoises (dolphins) nation of the inland navigation. So after death, like Bacchus's pirates in much for Shoal Haven River. Al. Homer, and who, in that shape, drive though I am afraid that these grants the whales on shore. With this of land will hardly ever repay Mes- view, the natives obsecrate the pora sieurs Berry and Wollstonecraft for poises by songs, when they see them their out-lay upon them, yet who- rolling. ' I found also that the abo
Constable's Edinburgh Magazinc, vol. ii. p. 403.
rigines of New Holland were strictly for the rain that had fallen. We were divided into two classes, the hunters obliged to climb dismounted. The and the fishers; and that they did hill appeared to me worse than the not dare to encroach upon each pass up Mount York on the Bathurst other's mode of gaining a livelihood. road; but the route that avoids it is Red Point of Captain Cook was the not preferred. scene of our torch-fishing. Much of So much for the county of Camthe rock was flat, and veined in den, which contains the celebrated squares, as if it had been paved, Cow Pastures of New South Wales, seemingly the effect of iron and fu- and is full of excellent grazing land, sion. Captain Flinders says, the at the back of the mountain ridge, cause of its being named Red Point and well watered, which Governor escaped his and Mr. Bass's notice, Macquarie's good agricultural disbut it was plain to us that the iron tricts of Appin and Airds are certaingave it a reddish appearance. ly not. The country at the back of
Thursday, 23d October.-Returned that is called by Mr. Berry, “ the to the neighbourhood of Liverpool verdant, well-watered, and very dethis day, though very showery.. The sirable pastoral district of Argyleascent of the Illawarra Mountain was shire.”
B. F very steep and difficult, the worse
And the slain slain again. MR. EDITOR.—I disagree, in one sense of what may be called the pretrespect or other, with all your Cor- tily fanciful, than men.
Thus you respondents, on the subject of Female will see a forest of ivory, with amber Genius. It has never been rated so and ebony foliage, bent over the pit high as the author of“ False Distinc- of a theatre, when Cupid in silver tions appears to think. His asser- wings and red slippers, or a Goddess tion is a libel on the judgment of the in white muslin short petticoats, deworld. Mrs. Hannah More may, if scends upon the stage ; whilst the she pleases, hold that “women have very same objects are damned with more imagination than men;' so the faint praise of “ Very pretty, inlikewise a Monboddite may hold, that deed,” by the beau, hung upon the men have (naturally) more tail than end of his nose by the man of genius, monkies ;-but one dogma is just as and plainly anathematized, piously far as the other from expressing the consecrated to Hades, by the critic. sense of the public. The above very Again, if we listen to female judgrespectable lady's opinion of her own ments passed on literary works, we sex, is little more than individual: shall find the sex always select and it exercises no influence whatever on rapturously commend the little, light, the general mind, beyond the short pretty, and fanciful passages, overradius of her own coterie. No such looking the magnificent, solid, sub“ Distinction,” as that women have lime, and daringly imaginative. Look more imagination than men, has ever at their own works: does their imaobtained in the world, at least with gination soar, or does it merely sport? those of the many-headed multitude Will you liken them to eagles or to whose opinions are worth a refutation, butterflies? What would a lady or who could appreciate a refutation take, to talk in the vein of were it given. In this instance, therefore, I cannot but think that your Con
Pity, like a naked new-born babe, tributor X.Y.Z. has only raised a sha- Striding the blast, or heaven's cherubim
horsed dow for the simple and amusive pur- Upon the sightless couriers of the air.pose of laying it. The Distinction which has been made, and which is Or rather when she attempts this not “ False,” but unquestionably style, do we not immediately set her true, is,-that women have a readier down as a woman of masculine ge
For the female sex, I think, treating it so very illogically; it it will scarcely be denied, that Par- would be superfluous to bowl down nassus needs no pinnacles; Pegasus, a sublunary nine-pin with one of the too, ambles like a palfrey when he spheres. His arguments, I do allow feels the side-saddle, and the soft with SURREY, are as easily overturnburthen in it. When the femi- ed as a castle of cards; but I connine imagination does take wing, tend that they are not to be held do you find it careering with the as arguments, but as illustrations. storm, and scaling the empyrean? or X. Y. Z. is in all likelihood as pecdo you find it glittering over the cable, even in logic, as a Pope in theomeadows of Terra Firma, within an logy; one race of his pen, however, inch of the surface, to which it is through half a dozen lines would, I bound as well by its will as its weak- am convinced, have demolished this ness? And why? Why because of false distinction (as he calls it) had that ready and satisfiable sense of he chosen to attack it secundum artem. beauty which I have remarked in the To ask-“ Where is Mrs. Shaksex, who are pleased with what we speare?” is, I acknowledge, as conalmost despise. Our inordinate and clusive in that sense as to askever-craving appetite for the super- Where is Mr. Venus de Medicis ? in excellent, makes us spurn the earth another. The former query no more and all its pleasures; but the im- proves that women are comparatively pulse carries us to heaven. Finally, inferior as to nobility of mind, than list to their conversation; it is, gene- the latter that men are comparatively rally speaking, far more engaging inferior as to beauty of person ; than that of men; but it is neverthe though perhaps the assertion in both less wholly made up of prettinesses,- cases is about equally incontroverdelicate turns of thought and ex- tible. In the same way, to inquire pression, without anything either of fora female Rape of the Lock, or Vertstrength or sublimity; their auditors Vert, and let judgment go by default, always smile, but never stare. This is, like almost all other arguments proceeds from the same, I will not drawn from particular instances (as say, less fastidious, but readier (a our impeccable must well know) as word which will suit any theory) illegitimate a mode of ratiocination sense of the beautiful, which distin- as natural logic delights to sport guishes women in general ; their con- withal. A female Hudibras or Dunversation is the exponent of their ciad, also, or a good female Play, betaste, and that taste acknowledges ing not to be found in rerum naturâ, beauty there where the taste of one is no more an argument against the half our sex is too dull to perceive it, intellectuality of the sex, than the of the other too critical to allow it. non-existence of a male treatise on
Whatever the fair sex are willing Needlework or Clear-starching is to claim on the above score, I am against the mechanical ingenuity of equally willing to grant; but that But very possibly, this popuany one who has either reading, prac- lar and loose kind of logic is more tical experience, or judgment, should than sufficient to confirm most peomaintain that women, generally ple, who are convinced already by speaking, have more imagination their own experience and reflection. than men (i. e. higher in quality and X. Y. Z. would not conjure up a greater in quantity) seems to me storm to blow a gossamer; the False next door to maintaining that modest Distinction which he so generously astronomical paradox, that the moon put into the public mouth, scarcely is made of green cheese. I cannot merits, and therefore probably did but think that the flagrant absurdity not obtain, from him, a serious refu of the assertion (if indeed he ever tation. did hear it made) was the reason of As X. Y. Z. is right in his posiour “ impeccable logician” X. Y. Z. tion but wrong in his arguments, so
The world's opinion in one word! This epithet of “ masculine” is applied to Joanna Baillie, and generally to all women of a vigorous imagination ; thus proving that the public have never made the Falsc Distinction now for the first time so injuriously ascribed to them.