Nigel Helyer

Authors = Dr Sonique (Australia) and Simo Alitalo (Finland)

Title = "Sailing Instructions for Captain Cook".


The texts are verbatim suggestions offered by a 'gentleman' of the Royal Society to Captain Cook - and are wonderfully sensitive, considering the politics and ethics of the day.   Naturally they are viewed with the advantage of hindsight in a horribly ironic manner - hence the musical accompaniment.



------- Script---------------------------------------------


Nigel Helyer (AUSTRALIA)

(with Simo Alitalo (Finland))


OM/Celestial Empire

ICOLS - International Corporation of Lost Structures


"Sailing Instructions for Captain Cook".


Hints offered to the consideration of Captain Cook, Mr. Banks, Doctor Solander and the other gentlemen who go on the expedition on board the Endeavor.


To exercise the utmost patience and forbearance with respect to the natives of the several lands where the ship may touch. To check the petulance of the sailors and restrain the wanton use of firearms.


To have it still in view that shedding the blood of those people is a crime of the highest nature. They are human creatures the work of the same omnipotent author, equally under his care with the most polished European, perhaps being less offensive, more entitled to his favour.


They are the natural and in the strictest sense of the word the legal possessors of the several regions they inhabit. No European nation has a right to occupy any part of their country or settle among them without their voluntary consent.



Conquest over such people can give no just title because they could never be the aggressors.

They may naturally and justly attempt to repel intruders who they may apprehend are come to disturb them in the quiet possession of their country, whether that apprehension be well or ill founded.


Therefore should they in a hostile manner oppose a landing and kill some men in the attempt even this would hardly justify firing among them till every other gentle method had been tried.


There are many ways to convince them of the superiority of Europeans without slaying any of those poor people. For example...


By shooting some of the birds or animals that are near them, showing them that a bird upon a wing may be brought down by a shot. Such an appearance would strike them with amazement and awe.


Lastly to drive a bullet through one of their huts or knock down some conspicuous object with great shot if any such are near the shore.


Amicable signs may be made which they could not possibly mistake.

Such as holding up a jug, turning it bottom upward to show them it was empty and then applying it to the lips in the attitude of drinking.

The most stupid, from such a token, must immediately comprehend that drink was wanted.


Opening the mouth wide, putting the fingers towards it and then making the motion of chewing would sufficiently demonstrate a want of food.


They should not at first be alarmed with the report of guns, drums, or even a trumpet, but if there are other instruments of music on board they should be first entertained near the shore with a soft ear.