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The Pa Maori

Malaita Island

Malaita Island

In his South Sea Islanders (London, 1893) W. T. Wawn mentions two fortified islets in a harbour at Auki, Malaita Island, about twenty miles S.S.E. of Cape Astrolabe:—"These fortified islets are, I think, peculiar to Malaita, and are numerous along the northern coast. They are, originally, sandy reef islets, close to the coast, elevated two or three feet above the level of the highest tides. Round the edges of the coral foundation of the islet walls have been built up of coral blocks, rising some four feet above the interior surface of page 430the islet. Every here and there are openings in the wall, which at a distance resemble embrasures, and into which canoes can be floated. Once inside they can be hauled up safely amongst the low thatched houses, which are crowded close together beneath the cocoanut trees, with very narrow footways between them."