The great discoverers

It is only at the end of the 18th century that French and English navigators made a stop over in Tahiti establishing the first contact with the islands and its people. 
At the end of the 18th century English and French expeditions (Wallis, Bougainville, Cook, La Perouse…) visited the Pacific with an entirely new perspective of discovery and humanism and accompanied with scientists, botanists, astronomers …. 

In April 1768, after his passage at Tahiti, that he baptised “Nouvelle Cythere” Bougainville published an account of his voyage that was a bona fide best seller. He described Tahiti and the idyllic life lived by its inhabitants, creating a myth that inspired numerous artists and writers, like Denis Diderot and his “Supplement au Voyage de Bougainville”. 
This was a period where large scale trade began and the first pearls and of course the first shells of this pearl oyster, or nacre, and its specificities made their appearance on the global scene.

While making a stop in Tahiti in the late 18th century, English and French navigators established the first contacts and the first exchanges with the Polynesian world and its inhabitants.