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Young Woman of the Sandwich Islands
[YOU-0160]

by Captain Cook's Hawaii



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A Young Woman of the Sandwich Islands

Artist: John Webber
Plate: 63
Engraver: J. K. Sherwin

Printed by: Lahaina Printsellers, Ltd., 2016

This finely detailed image is a portrait of a Hawaiian girl with feathered rings (lei) on top of her head and around her neck, which identify her as a member of royal rank. The leis were made from the feathers of rainforest birds, most of which were released after a number of feathers had been removed.

The somewhat stiff appearance of the young woman's hair is an indication that it had been coated with lime, a common decorative style that also bleached the front hair white.

The shawl (kihei) that she is wearing is made of soft, white tapa that falls from her shoulders, and it's another indication of her royal status.

Cook's journals make note of the high quality of the islands' tapa, comparing it favorably to the finest European cloth.

We custom-print this facsimile on waterproof canvas in our Lahaina studio using the finest archival inks, which are tested and guaranteed not to fade or shift under normal circumstances for over 100 years. Modern printing techniques allow us to improve and enhance the historical subject matter, even as we're careful to preserve and maintain its historical and artistic integrity.