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Curiosities from the Pacific Ocean

Curiosities from the Pacific Ocean

A Remarkable Rediscovery in the Tropenmuseum, Amsterdam

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Artikelcode: 7600


Curiosities from the Pacific Ocean:
A Remarkable Rediscovery in the Tropenmuseum, Amsterdam: Thirteen Ethnographic Objects from the Bruny d'Entrecasteaux Expedition (1791-1794)
71 pages
color and b&w photos
Hard cover with dust jacket
29 x 23 cm
0,634 kg

At the end of the 18th century the frenchman Joseph Bruny d'Entrecasteaux sailed the western part of the Pacific Ocean. On the return voyage, this famous expedition visited an intermediate port-of-call on Java making use of the harbour facilities of the Dutch East Indies. The senior Dutch VOC official, S.C. Nederburgh, temporarily stationed on Java at the time, was able to acquire a number of the objects collected during the expedition, and that is why part of the Bruny d'Entrecasteaux collection ended up in a Dutch museum.

The objects, eleven clubs, a spear and a food pounder, deserve more attention than they have received until now. They were acquired by the French expedition on several Melanesian and Polynesian islands in 1792 and 1793, some thirteen years after the English explorer James Cook's third and final voyage. They therefore number among the oldest Oceanic collections found in ethnographic museums in the West.

This volume traces in great detail the history of acquisition of these important and interesting objects now stored in Dutch and French ethnographic institutions. Such serendipity is extremely rare for museum objects acquired more than two hundred years ago.