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The New Zealander March 19th 1859

The smart northerly breeze that set in on Wednesday morning brought quite a small fleet of inter-provincials and coasters into port, together with the London ship Excelsior.   She has had a fair average passage of 104 days from the Downs, whence she sailed on 2 December, calling at no port in the Channel.  The earlier part of her passage proved to be tedious and she experienced 24 hours of very heavy weather in the Western Ocean but happily without any casualty.  Had almost no NE trades but caught a smart SE trade 4 degrees to the northward of the equator, which she crossed on 5 January, sighting Cape Augustine on the Brazilian Coast.  Crossed the meridian of Greenwich on 2 February and that of the Cape of Good Hope on 6th.  Ran down her easting, meeting with drift ice.  Passed to the southward and outside of Tasmania in a heavy gale, sighting no land (except Cape Augustine) from the date of her departure from the Downs until she made the Three Kings on Friday 11th; had light weather up the coast.  On 6 January spoke the ship Donald Mackay from Liverpool to Melbourne.  [There must, we suspect, be some mistake in dates, it being, we think, impossible for a ship crossing the equator on the 5th to speak another ship 11 degrees to the southward of it on 6 January] and on 20 January, the Lincluden Castle from London to Bombay with troops.  There were two deaths and two births during the passage.  The Excelsior is a clipper ship and a fine vessel of her class, carrying her beam well aft and thereby affording ample accommodation for passengers in her spacious cuddy.  She brings another large accessing to our populations and has come into port in clean and creditable condition.  We beg to return our acknowledgement to Captain Faithfull for the prompt and gentlemanly courtesy with which we were furnished with every information in his power to give us.  Three of the seamen, accused of theft, were landed in charge of the Police as soon as the ship came to anchor, the hands aloft stowing the foretopsail cheering them loudly on their shoreward passage.