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Tikera; or, Children of the Queen of Oceania

Note on the Text

Note on the Text

This translation is based on the 1956 Warsaw edition of Dzieci królowej Oceanii, which in its turn was based on the first edition in book form, published in 1877.

Wiśniowski freely used Maori words, but they were often printed in a garbled form, consistent with a compositor's misreading of a handwritten script, for instance ‘ranunga’ for ‘runanga’, ‘Ngatisuanui’ for ‘Ngatiruanui’. These errors have been corrected. In the first part of his book Wiśniowski refers to Maoris indifferently as Maoris or Malays. This has been standardized to Maoris. He frequently refers to Tempski, as he calls von Tempsky, as a General. He has been given his proper rank as Major. On the other hand the commander page xx of H.M.S. Orpheus, Commodore Burnett, he demotes to Captain. His rank has been restored.

Apart from these instances the intention has been to keep as closely to the original as seemed consistent with reasonably congruous English. The translator and the editor gratefully acknowledge the help given by Mrs Mary Podstolski and Miss Jean Ann Anderson, now Mrs J. Scott-Miller. The translator undertook the research on which the biographical section of the introduction is based and has guided the editing in other respects. I am cordially grateful for this, as for the assistance of Mrs Aleksandra Casselton, Lecturer in Russian at the University of Auckland, who is a native Polish speaker. Some of the notes owe much to the special knowledge of Dr G. W. Gibson, Mr R. S. Oppenheim, Professor J. C. Reid, and Professor M. P. K. Sorrenson, who must not however be held responsible for any deficiencies.

Dennis McEldowney