Friday, 12th. Cloudy weather with Showers of rain. This morning a Man and 2 Young Women, with some others, came to the Fort, whom we had not seen before, and as their manner of introducing themselves was a little uncommon, I shall insert it. Mr. Banks was as usual at the gate of the Fort trading with the people, when he was told that some Strangers were coming, and therefore stood to receive them. The Company had with them about a Dozen young Plantain Trees, and some other small Plants, these they laid down about 20 feet from Mr. Banks; the people then made a Lane between him and them. When this was done the Man (who appeared to be only a Servant to the two Women) brought the young Plantains singly, together with some of the other plants, and gave them to Mr. Banks, and at the delivery of each pronounced a Short sentence which we understood not. After he had thus disposed of all his plantain trees, he took several pieces of Cloth and spread them on the ground. One of the Young women then stepp’d upon the Cloth, and with as much innocency as one could possibly conceive, exposed herself, entirely naked, from the waist downwards; in this manner she turn’d herself once or twice round, I am not certain which, then stepped off the cloth, and dropp’d down her Cloaths. More Cloth was then spread upon the former, and she again performed the same Ceremony. The Cloth was then rowled up and given to Mr. Banks, and the two Young women went and Embraced him, which ended the Ceremony.
May 12, 2012
Friday, 12th May, 1769