During the famous mutiny on the Bounty in April 1789, the instigator Fletcher Christian seized the ship, placed the commander Lieutenant William Bligh and his loyal crew in a small launch and abandoned them out there, on the vast South Pacific Ocean. Together with eight fellow mutineers, twelve Polynesian women and six Polynesian men, Fletcher Christian eventually took refuge on tiny, isolated and uninhabited Pitcairn Island, situated about halfway between New Zealand and South America. These Anglo-Polynesian settlers landed on Pitcairn in January 1790 and then lived there in complete isolation for the first 18 years, until they were discovered, by coincidence, in 1808.
The coexistence of British sailors and Polynesians resulted in the creation of a creole language called Pitkern, which is still spoken on the island. This language is basically a mixture of 18th century English and Tahitian, with later additions of American and New Zealand English. Today, Pitkern is also spoken in New Zealand and on Norfolk Island, off Australia´s east coast.
The numerous place names that are still used on Pitcairn Island today are a unique feature of Pitkern. These fascinating, colourful and often funny place names are the subject of this book. Where did they come from? What do they mean? And exactly where on the island are all of these different places to be found?