A VERY ENGLISH MAN
We get a further insight into Marsters, the man in the definitive study of the Palmerston language which was undertaken in 1992 by one of the world's leading linguists.
Sabine Ehrhart-Kneher writes: "It seems that William Marsters tired to prevent his wives from speaking Maori. He was a very distrustful person and he did not want them to communicate in a language he could not (fully) understand. He obliged his children - and later on, his grandchildren - to speak English all the time...According to witnesses, Marsters influence was greater than the Bible on what is known to be a religious island."
There's another viewpoint in a book of 1921 ('Cruise of the Dream Ship' by Ralph Stock). The author pays tribute to the standards William laid down from the outset. He writes; "That they were sound standards is evidenced by the people of Palmerston to-day. They read, write and speak English, this last with an accent vaguely reminiscent of the south-west of England. They are courteous, hospitable, and honest to a degree little short of startling..."