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Abstract

By 1830 Rapanui had been visited by several exploratory and merchant vessels and by an unknown number of whalers.' Of these doubtless scores of visits, only few accounts have survived. The calling at Rapanui on 6 March 1830 of the British forty-six-gun man-of-war H.M.S. Seringapatam under the command of Captain Willliam Waldcgrave is exceptional, for two reasons. First, the Seringapatam certainly was the largest vessel that had yet fetched up off Rapanui, an event which would have left an indelible impression on the Rapanui people. Second, there exist three eyewitness accounts of this calling.

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