Journals

Second Journey (MS 107/1/1-2)

10th December 1777


transcription

[10th December 1777]
den 10

vertrok terug naar de visrivier, iets z:w: byna geen wind of wolk, zeer heet. ging wederom de caffers besoeken die my zeer vriendelyk ontfingen dog als altyd sterk bedelden ging tegen den berg met Capitein Godissa en syn soon gona om hun gesaaij te zien dat sy hier en daar met plekken tussen de doornbomen ingesaayt hadden, hun graan dat nog klein stond en ik niet kende, pompoenen calebassen watermeloenen en erten vroeg waar zy hun tabac hadden zeiden nog geen gepoot te hebben, een meid paste op de plantagie.
zag by de kraal komende Capitein Coba die nog by deze kraal zyn bezoek bleef houden, besig met twe a drie van zyn volk assagayen te smeden, hunne hamer was van yser en hun aambeeld een klip, een zyner soldaten had een ledere zak aan iedere hand aan wiers voorste eind een beeste hoorn opengemaakt was die staken beide in een pyp van een mierennest dus van kleie gemaakt die in het vuur lag, zodat hy de zakken die by zyne handen open waren toedrukken het vuur sterker aanblies.
dronk van hunne zure melk en wy dansten fris op, waar na vertrok, dog een heele swerm caffers met de twe Capteins en enige wyven liepen me tot de visrivier. hier gingen zy om my zitten roken, en wy waaren zeer vrolyk, dog hun gedurig bedelen, verveeld op den duur.
terwyl wy daar zaten quam een kuiken dief gevlogen, kreeg schielyk myn snaphaan en schoot hem, dat zy zeer admireerden, vooral toen ik nog eens met de andere loop een kleinder vogel raakte. de slag van het geweer geviel hun niet, myn hottentot arriveerde met een fraaye blaauwe craan die ik desen middag by de kleine visrivier geschoten had, dezen versogt coba direct, na ze hem gegeven te hebben sneed hy er de vleugels af, die singulier zyn omdat derselver agterste veren als de lange staart des vogels uitmaken
+[added on page 83:]+ hy hieuw ze aan zyn hooft, en maakte allerley vreemde kuren en posturen, zeggende dat hy ze in den oorlog wilde gebruiken. met zons ondergank keerden zy terug; het is vandaag zeer heet geweest, dog tegen den avond een frisse z:w:

[page 83]
probeerde de barometer op de vorige plaats by prinselo om tien uren s'morgens Schoon weer z w zagte wind byna geen wolken kreeg 27 duim en 5 tienden
n b hunne tuin hoort als men er na vraagt hun capt dog zy eten alle ervan.
hun schilt. [blank]
tot de visrivier hier is de sweed hr sparman geweest met potgieter en is toen langs bosjesmans rivier. na de caap geweest de selfde weg gekomen

translation

[10th December 1777]
The 10th

Travelled back towards the Fish River, rather to the south-west. Almost no wind or cloud, very hot. Went Again to visit the Caffres who received me in a very friendly way but with begging as always. Went up the mountain with the chieftain Godissa and his son Gona to see their crops which they had planted here and there in places between the thorntrees: their grain, which was still young and which I did not recognise; pumpkins; calabashes, watermelons; and peas. Asked where they had their tobacco and they said they had still not planted it. A girl looks after the plantings. Arriving at the kraal I saw the chieftain Coba who was still paying a visit to this kraal. He was busy forging assegais with two or three of his people. Their hammer was of iron and their anvil was a stone. One of his soldiers had a leather bag in each hand at the front of this was a opened cow-horn , stuck these into the pipe from an ants’nest, and thus made of clay, that lay in the fire so that when he pressed shut the bags, which were open at his hands, the fire was fanned more strongly.
Drank some of their sour milk and we did a brisk dance after which I left; but a whole swarm of Caffres, with both chiefs and some of their women accompanied me to the Fish River. Here they came and sat around me smoking and we were very merry; but their continual begging eventually became annoying . While we were sitting there a hawk came flying over, I immediately took my musket and shot it, which they admired and especially when I again hit a smaller bird with the other barrel. The report of the gun did not please them. My Hottentots arrived with a beautiful blue crane that I had shot this afternoon at the Little Fish River. Coba immediately asked for it and when I had given it to him he cut off its wings. These are remarkable because their rear feathers of the same form the long tail of these birds.
[added on page 83:] He held these to his head and cut all sorts of strange caprices and postures, saying that he wanted to use them in war. They returned at sunset. It has been very hot today but towards evening there was a fresh south-west wind.

[page 83]
Tried out the barometer at the previous place, at Prinsloo's at ten o'clock in the morning. Fine weather, a soft south-west wind, almost no clouds. Got 27 inches and 5 tenths. N.B. If one asks them about it they say that their gardens belong to their chief, but they all eat from it. Their shield [blank]
The Swede, Mr. Sparrmann reached the Fish River here with Potgieter and then went along the Bosjemans River and returned to Cape Town the same way.