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    Sale 5808

    Travel, Science & Natural History

    8 April 2009, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 110

    Francesco Bartolozzi, R.A. (1725-1815), after Nathaniel Dance, R.A.

    Omai, a Native of Ulaietea

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    Francesco Bartolozzi, R.A. (1725-1815), after Nathaniel Dance, R.A.
    Omai, a Native of Ulaietea
    stipple engraving, published 1774
    unframed
    24¼ x 17¼in. (61.5 x 44cm.)


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    On his return to England in 1774 from Cook's second voyage, Tobias Furneaux, commander of the Adventure, brought back a young Tahitian native, Omai. On his arrival Omai caused great excitement amongst London society and was even granted an audience with the King. He was perceived as the very embodiment of Rousseau's 'noble savage'. He was returned to Tahiti on Cook's third voyage, laden with gifts and is said to have been dressed in a breastplate and helmet. Distressed at parting from his English comrades, Omai was unable to readapt to life on Huaheine and died only a few years later.

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