Polynesian Navigation

Frank M. Bateson
1959 Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific  
Polynesia is commonly regarded as that vast area of the Pacific enclosed within a triangle formed by New Zealand, in the southwest ; Hawaii, in the north ; and Easter Island, in the southeast. Within these boundaries lie thousands of scattered islands : a few comparatively large, but the majority very small. This region is largely ocean. Within Polynesia the early European explorers found a lightskinned people, speaking dialects of a common tongue. These people, known as Polynesians or Maoris,
more » ... ad no written language. Nor did they possess iron tools, and, when first discovered, were virtually a Stone-Age people. Their settlements were not confined entirely to Polynesia proper, for many Pacific islands outside these boundaries were inhabited by them. All these scattered communities had common traditions and myths. Their traditions included accounts of how their ancestors in the distant past crossed the ocean from a hot country to settle in their island homes.
doi:10.1086/127363 fatcat:zebvzaewdfabpgix6zrx2g2msi