A 500f stamp was issued showing what is officially described as being an ancient engraving of Matavai Bay, Tahiti.
According to the French Polynesia Philatelic Centre, the engraving from which this stamp originates is an extract from the second volume of the Voyages of Captain Cook (French Edition - 1779 - pl. 9). According to them it is entitled: “View of Matavai Bay in Otahiti, called the HAVEN OF THE ROYAL PORT by Captain Wallis”. Furthermore, it is said, “the ship at anchor is certainly the Resolution”.
The stamp actually shows part of “A View of Matavai Bay in Otaheite from One Tree Hill” with Endeavour at anchor and Fort Venus in the distance. The engraving appeared first in Hawkesworth, volume II as plate 2. It was based on a drawing by the Irish artist John James Barralet entitled “Tree on One-Tree Hill, Otaheite” which was based on a drawing by Sydney Parkinson entitled “The Tree on one Tree Hill”.
Originally published in Cook's Log, page 19, volume 36, number 2 (2013).
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