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The unfortunate voyage and catastrophe of HMS Wager, 1741-42
Shipwreck and mutiny on the coast of Patagonia: disaster, authority and defiance

« An affecting narrative: the loss of the Wager, 1742 »


An affecting narrative of the unfortunate voyage and catastrophe of His Majesty's ship Wager one of Commodore Anson's squadron in the South Sea expedition

containing a full account of its being cast away on a desolate island, and of the strange proceedings of the Officers and Private Men after that unhappy event: more especially of those important incidents, the shooting of Mr. Henry Cosens, and the imprisonment of Capt. C___p [Cheap, Ed.] for that action

the whole compiled from authentic journals, and transmitted by letter to a merchant in London, from a person who was an eye witness of all the affair

exhibiting a complete view of the perils and terrible disasters which the Crew underwent; the wonderful adventure of near an hundred of them in their boat, along the vast southern coast of Patagonia and through the Straits of Magellan for above a thousand leagues, during which the greatest part of them perished by cold and famine; the arrival of those few that survived in the miserablest condition at Rio Grand; their hospitable reception and entertainment at that place; their passage from thence to Rio Janeiro, next to Lisbon, and finally to England

intermixed with several entertaining passages and remarks.

Printed for John Norwood, and sold by the booksellers of London, Bristol and Liverpool. MDCCLI.


A genuine account of the unfortunate expedition of the Wager


When we parted I promised you, in case I returned, an account of our expedition. My imagination was then full of golden dreams. I flattered myself with nothing less than a fortune sufficient to buy a peerage; and I had, like Nestor Ironside's Projector in the Guardian [a promoter of speculative schemes; the reference is to the fictional editor of the literary journal Guardian (1713), written and published by the essayist Richard Steele, Ed.], formed such a plan of life, to be executed after the completion of this enterprise, as would transmit my name to latest posterity and secure me the blessings of future ages. To be serious, I thought at least of founding an alms-house for superannuated Sailors, who had


consumed their strength in the Merchant's Service and who might otherwise be left in their old age to struggle with poverty, after having encountered innumerable distresses to enrich a set of ingrates that, basking in all delights, are so apt to forget the toils of those by whom they were procured. But alas! Disappointments are the unalienable inheritance of human nature; and they have generally the greatest share, whose hopes are the most sanguine. This I have dearly experienced; for all my romantic views and enchanting expectations have issued in a series of perils and calamities (hardly to be conceived, and I hope never to be tasted by you) of which the following lines are a brief relation. I shall divest it all I can of maritime terms and phrases, many of which must be unintelligible by you, and clothe it, as far as possible, with the language you are used to hear and speak. Nor will I trouble you, where it is not absolutely necessary, with any of those particulars that are common to every voyage: for you are more concerned to know what I and my comrades have suffered and escaped, than in what longitude and latitude this or the other event happened; how such and such coasts, rocks, or islands bore from us, or what soundings we here and there met with. I should apologize for delaying my narrative so long, but that you are sensible it was not owing to forgetfulness of the obligation I am under, but to a succession of disorders incurred by the fatigues I have undergone: one advantage however attends it, that you have now an opportunity of joining with my account the report of our friends arrived in the Centurion which, altogether, will furnish you with a tolerable idea of the proceedings and catastrophe of the whole squadron.

It was on the 18th of September, 1740, that we left St. Helens, after our departure from England


had been deferred about ten months from its first appointment.

Some obstructions are incident to most undertakings of this kind; but several of those that impeded ours seemed to be owing to an infatuation [poor judgment, Ed.]. For I can think of no other cause, but such as will bear very hard on the honesty of those who were at the helm; and for their honour I would rather suppose Providence threw insurmountable obstacles in the way, than that they were owing to any sinister design and practice of theirs. I would judge ill of no man till constrained by evidence, especially of those advanced to posts of trust and dignity; for if these betray, or but neglect, the public interest, their guilt is unspeakably more heinous than that of a private criminal; the mischief they do, being vastly more extensive, and their country having laid them under obligations to diligence and fidelity in its service far transcending those that inferior people are capable of: and therefore, in proportion to the heinousness of the offence, Charity requires us to be tender of imputing it. I would to God there were no presumptions whereon to found a charge of this sort, against some of those who have been entrusted with the administration of these Kingdoms; but, without recurring to a judicial blindness, I fear the other horn of the dilemma will be scarcely avoidable. For he that seriously considers how magnanimous a King we have on the throne, fond of military glory and no less inclined to promote the prosperity of the realm; what a harmony has always subsisted between him and his Parliaments; how readily (I had almost said profusely) they have furnished him with revenues and supplies, beyond even the imagination of former Princes, all that could be desired to aggrandise himself and his Dominions; what a Fleet we have maintained,


sufficient to render us the terror or arbiters of the world; what potent Colonies we have, or might have had, in the East and West Indies, all subservient to the increase of our naval force and the annoying of our enemies: I say, he that considers these, and other favourable circumstances I could enumerate, recollecting also the glorious figure we have heretofore made when our situation and opportunities were far less advantageous, and then surveys the present scene of things, observing how we have been despised, insulted, over-reached, and defeated abroad, what discontent and murmuring has been at home, and what an unparalleled load of debt we have contracted; such a one will be strongly prompted to think that the abilities of those entrusted with the administration are very unequal to the task, or that they have betrayed their Sovereign's confidence, and sacrificed the community to their own emoluments. Were this the real case, they would be the worst of traitors, for whose offence the most rigorous punishments our Constitution allows would be too gentle. But let us not be too hasty in making so injurious a conclusion, as this must be if without a solid foundation. It is but fair, that we advert to and impartially weigh every thing tending to justify or excuse their behaviour. And when this is done, it may perhaps appear to a sagacious, candid examiner, that what is complained of has been in some measure owing to a conjunction of incidents, foreign and domestic, which our Ministers could neither foresee or prevent; and that they have been often pushed to ungracious proceedings by the restless machinations of pretended patriots, aided by the most pestilent faction that ever infested a Kingdom; I mean those who are incessantly endeavouring to overturn the present settlement of the Crown; to effect which, their


utmost efforts are bent on distracting our Councils, embroiling us with the neighbouring Powers, and rendering every scheme that is for the glory or benefit of the realm abortive.

I wish I have not startled you, by rushing into this odd digression; but I was driven, as it were, thereto by a remembrance of those bitter misfortunes which I can here give you only a slight sketch of, and which were attributed by all that felt them, in great degree, to a delaying of the enterprise in which they fell out, till the season became altogether unfit for it. Now these procrastinations being imputed by many to the negligence or v____y [vanity, Ed.] of those who were then in place; it is not strange, if some thoughts relating to these persons associate with the disaster I am recounting. I hope, however, I have not therein transgressed the bounds becoming every one who is speaking of his superiors, or have indulged any freedoms with their character unbeseeming an Englishman. I have not taken upon me to pronounce any thing; I have expressed myself problematically, leaving the determination of the point to others. And now I proceed with my proper subject.

We sailed from St. Helens, as I have already said, on the 18th of September, 1740, in company with the Gloucester, Pearl, Severn, Tryal, and two store-ships. This squadron, under the command of Commodore George Anson, was designed to cruise on the Spaniards in the South Sea, and to destroy their settlements in that part of the world, from whence their immense wealth, the sinews of war, is chiefly derived.

And indeed, had this enterprise succeeded according to the reasonable expectation of the adventurers, it would not only have been a fatal blow to the enemy in irretrievably sinking their power, but must have enriched our island by the plunder,


far above any of its former acquisitions. Whereas it has so turned out, that if we compute the whole cost of the expedition, including the ships, cargos, and lives that were lost in the course of it, it is a question if the treasure imported will countervail the expense.

When we sailed from St. Helens our ships were all in good condition. The squadron consisted of five men-of-war, a sloop-of-war, and two tenders for stores and provision. The Wager, whose adventures I am rehearsing [narrating in detail, Ed.], mounted twenty eight guns; its Crew (without reckoning the Marines) were one hundred and sixty Men; its Commander, Dandy Kidd.

On the 21st of September, we all got clear of the land, steering for Madeira. But the winds being cross, it was almost five weeks before we made that island, which we might otherwise have done in two. This threw us all into an ill humour; for we had been retarded too much already, and could not but look on every new delay as a blast on our design. However, on Sunday the 26th of October (to our great joy) we saw it; and on the Wednesday following anchored in Funchal Road. This is so named from a town of that name, which is the most considerable on the island, and may be deemed the metropolis of Madeira. This small country is under the Portuguese, who discovered it towards the beginning of last century. It lies within the latitude of 32 º 27 ', 18 degrees West from London. It is one continued hill, stretching East and West, under a most agreeable climate. The South side is finely improved, having a delightful mixture of gardens, vineyards, and country seats. The air is temperate and serene. Corn grows on the very summit of the hills, but the vines thrive not so well there as lower, by reason of the clouds with which those


heights are often enveloped. Grapes are the chief and most valuable produce of the island. These were first imported from Candy [the Venetian Candia (modern-day Heraklion), a town in Crete, origin of the malvasia grape, Ed.], and are of three or four sorts, yielding as many different kinds of wine; of which, that we call Malmsey Madeira is the richest [sweetest, Ed.]. One of the best vineyards affording this precious liquor belongs to the Jesuits, who are no inconsiderable merchants. Here is plenty of citrons, of which they make a fine sweet-meat, or sucket [candied fruit, Ed.]: the sugar they candy them with is very excellent; but having little more of it than is necessary for this and other uses of the inhabitants, there is seldom any of it sent abroad. I was told the soil is not so fertile by a great deal as formerly. Some years the grain answers very poorly, and they are forced to bring corn from abroad. Plums, cherries, apricots, peaches, figs, walnuts, currants, gooseberries, filberts, etc. thrive here; the three last they had from England. Oranges and lemons are in the greatest abundance.

But the fruit most esteemed, and even venerated by the natives, is the banana. This they fancy to be it which tempted our first parents [Adam and Eve, Ed.], and that the leaves furnished them with aprons after the Fall; and truly they are large enough for such a purpose. One of the horridest crimes, in their eyes, is to cut this fruit with a knife; for on thus dividing it, forsooth, they discover all the apparatus of our Saviour's passion [(presumably) reference to the cross-shaped core, in allusion to the crucifixion of Christ, Ed.]; and so they will have it to be a wounding his sacred image.

The natives are extremely superstitious, bigoted, and priest-ridden; and they glory in their bondage. An absolute attachment to the Church, a blind subjection to the padres, and a contemptuous abhorrence of heretics, are their boasted virtues. The last of these is carried to such a length as extends beyond life; for as they


consign the souls of all whom they repute as such to eternal flames, so they will not allow a sepulture [burial, Ed.] to their bodies: and therefore those of this character who die there must be carried in a boat to sea, and committed to that kinder element.

The clergy here are very numerous, and of several Orders, all, as I have said, highly respected; but the Jesuits especially, whose church is the most splendid of any. Near this sacred edifice is a hospital for venereal patients, many of which are horrid and loathsome spectacles. This indeed is a most necessary institution, where acts of lewdness are encouraged by the climate, and practiced with very little reserve; while, at the same time, a modest salute [(perhaps) a kiss, Ed.] is regarded as an intolerable offence, raising the deepest jealousy and resentment, enough to provoke a murder. Such absurdities spring up everywhere, as weeds, amongst the human race, defacing the species, and hindering the growth of all the nobler fruits of understanding. Prejudices are too often considered as harmless things and so are suffered to take root; nay, it is censured as a folly endeavouring to eradicate them; whereas, in truth it is the most generous, the most laudable employment of a wise man to destroy them, as they are the bane of all true and solid felicity. They are pregnant sources of hatred amongst mankind, and all its direful effects, which have proved the destruction of millions: they subject us to restraints and hardships, which neither God nor Nature ever imposed, and deprive us of various pleasures that our beneficent Creator intended us to enjoy. I have not said half the evil of these detestable things which they deserve, and what I have said may seem oddly introduced here; but I seize every occasion of expressing my abhorrence of them. I won't, however, presume


particularly to specify or define them, because I know how dangerous it is to affront idols. I wish however, that somebody would write an instructive history of them. — But to return from this digression.

The people of Madeira are very moderate in the structure as well as the furniture of their houses, and in their clothes. Black is the prevailing colour (as I was told) at all times; but in Lent no one wears any other who can help it. Every fellow has his spado or dagger that he struts about with; even the meanest servant wears this badge of honour while he is performing the lowest office, and would think it a sad disgrace and irreparable misfortune to be divested of it.

The island is thoroughly stocked with churches and chapels; there are, I believe, twenty of these in Funchal, though this metropolis of the country does not exceed a good English market town. A superficial judge would conclude from this circumstance that religion was here in a most thriving condition; but you know we have an old proverb that decides who are furthest from God ["The nearer the church, the farther from God", Ed.]: and indeed true piety is often very scarce where what the priest pronounces to be such most abounds. The morals of this people by no means contradict the observation: for though they are not usually intemperate in drinking, they are excessively prone to another beastly vice; and the crying sin of murder (as I was informed) is not only thought trivial among them but, in some cases, is reputed an honour to the assassin. When they have embrewed [wetted, Ed.] their hands in the blood of any one, they fly towards some sacred edifice, one or other of which where they are so plenteous is generally near them; if they get within the holy walls, they find an asylum that must not lightly be violated: so strangely is the House of God perverted


to the Devil's service, in screening the vilest miscreants; and if they are taken before they can reach the altars, exile or imprisonment only are the penalties, and even these are redeemable.

There seem to be almost as many priests as laymen on the island. One would wonder how so many of them could be luxuriously maintained, if we considered not how profusely men will purchase a dispensation from the duties of real sanctity and self-denial, or a deliverance from future punishments. Though still there is another and very cogent motive to the people's bounty in providing for these locusts, I mean the dread of their power; for wherever Popery is paramount, every one is in danger of ruin that provokes them.

The only pernicious reptile this country abounds with is the lizard, which, though a most innocent creature in its temper, is very voracious and devours great quantities of fruit and grapes.

Funchal, the capital of this small territory, is situated on the South part of it commanding a fine bay, towards which it is covered by a high wall with a battery of cannon, besides a castle founded on a rock in the sea at a little distance from the shore.

We lay in harbour here about a week, which was employed in supplying the squadron with water, a stock of wine and fresh provisions. The day after we arrived the British consul came on board the Centurion, where he was elegantly by Mr. Anson; who, on his part, also paid a visit to the Portuguese governor of the island, and was very friendly received. Now it was likewise that Captain Norris, of the Gloucester, being in a bad state of health, desired leave of the Commodore to quit the command of that vessel, in order to his returning home


for the benefit of his native air, by which he hoped to be recovered. His request being complied with, occasioned some removes [reassignments, Ed.]: for Mr. Anson hereupon transferring Captain Mitchell to the Gloucester in the room [place, Ed.] of Norris; our Captain Kidd was removed to the Pearl; and Captain Murray of the Tryal sloop put over us in his stead; the command of the Tryal being at the same time conferred on Lieutenant Cheap.

These alterations being over and all settled, the Commodore, on the day after, viz. November the 5th, delivered to the several Captains an order appointing Santiago, one of the Cape Verde islands, to be the first rendezvous in case of a separation, where they were to expect him; and the island of St. Catherine's for a second, if they found him not at the former; and in the afternoon we all hoisted sail, and took our leave of Madeira.

The day following, when we had got a little out to sea, the Commodore having reflected on the inconvenience that might attend our touching at Santiago, by reason of the season's being already too far advanced, and the necessity therefore of avoiding as far as possible any thing that might further delay us, changed his order about the rendezvous and appointed the Isle of St. Catherine [Santa Catarina, Ed.], on the Brazil coast, instead of the other, to be repaired [(that is) the point of rendezvous, Ed.] to first in case of separation.

On Friday the 28th of this month, about four in the morning, we crossed the Equinoctial [Equator, Ed.], in longitude 27 º 50 ' West from the meridian of London. After this nothing very material happened to us till we came to an anchor in St. Catherine's Bay on the 19th of December. The sight of such a squadron as ours could not but alarm the coast; and we were quickly sensible of


it; for we could perceive the garrisons of two forts, that were at a considerable distance, in motion. Hereupon the Commodore thought proper immediately to dispatch a boat carrying an Officer on shore, with a respectful message to the Governor, acquainting him who we were and desiring a pilot to conduct us into the Road [anchorage, Ed.]. To this an obliging answer was returned and a pilot sent, who brought us to an anchor in a fine bay on the continent side.

We stayed here till the 17th of January 1741, during which time we were sufficiently employed. The first thing done after the ships were moored was the sending of our sick ashore, where the Commodore had very prudently ordered a couple of tents to be erected, one for the accommodation of the diseased, the other for the surgeon and his assistants. The Men that were well on board were busied in scraping, caulking, and thoroughly cleansing our vessels, which were most abominably foul and nauseous; in overhauling the rigging, repairing our masts and recruiting [replenishing supplies, Ed.] our wood and water.

This island would be a most delicious spot if some pains were bestowed in clearing it. It is covered with trees, except a few plantations along the shore: the soil is so rich and luxuriant that the finest fruits grow with little or no culture. The woods are stocked with odoriferous trees and shrubs, the harbour with excellent fish, the forests with pheasants, parrots, and monkeys; the rivers afford excellent water.

But with the many pleasurable circumstances attending this place, there is one great inconvenience: for as the woods that cover it and the surrounding mountains will not allow a free circulation of the air, and a vast plenty of vapour is continually exhaling from the prodigious exuberance of


vegetables, a thick mist descends every evening, enveloping the whole island till the sun is far advanced on the ensuing day, or a wind from the ocean dissipates it. This renders the air moist and insalubrious, and thereto we attributed the fluxes and fevers that many of us were troubled with while we lay there. Another thing which made the place disagreeable was the swarms of mosquitoes that plagued us all the day, as another venomous insect did in the night; which last, though so little as scarcely to be discerned single, makes a humming noise and raises a bump and itching where it bites, as a bug does.

But besides these grounds of dislike, we had no great reason to be pleased with our treatment at this place, as a squadron. We considered it indeed as an amicable port, and looked for nothing but good offices. But notwithstanding the civilities that passed between the Governor and our Commodore at first arrival, as above-mentioned, we had no cause to boast of his Excellency's friendship afterwards. For not only did he take measures to obstruct our purchasing the refreshments we needed, but he privately dispatched a messenger to Buenos Aires, in the River Plate, where the Spanish Admiral Pizarro then lay, with a circumstantial account of our ships and force; in order, no question, to his being the better able to provide for the intercepting and destroying us. Over and above all this, he feigned a resentment on occasion of Mr. Anson's sending one of his boats on board a sail [ship, Ed.] that he had discovered in the offing and which, for ought he knew, might be a Spaniard. The ship, it is true, proved to be a Portuguese brigantine, from Rio Grande [Rio Grande do Sul, Ed.]; whereupon the English Lieutenant, whom the Commodore sent to examine her, behaved in the politest manner to the Master and declined a


present that Officer would have made him. However, the Governor affected to be insensible of all this, and to represent our visiting the vessel at all as a heinous offence, amounting even to a breach of the peace between us and Portugal. These treacherous practices and altercations, with the distempers [diseases, Ed.] we languished under, owing as we supposed to the climate, made our condition at this place sufficiently disagreeable; so that we dispatched our affairs with all possible expedition [speed, Ed.], (though they detained us much longer than we at first thought of) and took our leave of it on the 17th of January 1741, the Commodore saluting the fort with eleven guns, which were returned by an equal number.

On the day preceding our departure, the Commodore assembled the Captains and gave them orders that, in case of a separation, they should first rendezvous at Port St. Julian [Puerto San Julián, Ed.]; if, after staying there ten days, they were not joined by the Centurion, they were to proceed through Le Maire Strait, round Cape Horn, into the South Seas, in which the next rendezvous was to be the isle of Nuestra Señora del Socorro [modern-day Isla Guamblin, in the Chonos Archipelago, Ed.], where they were to continue a certain time, cruising from five to twelve leagues distance from it; but if they found themselves under a necessity of quitting this station sooner than they would choose, they were then to make the best of their way to Juan Fernández, off which island they were to continue cruising fifty-six days when, if they were not joined by the Commodore, as they might justly suppose some mishap had befallen him, the eldest Officer was to take the command and under his conduct they were to proceed, annoying the enemy every way to the utmost of their power, according to the intent of the expedition.


Nothing memorable happened to us after Sunday the 18th of January, the day we parted, as I have said, from St. Catherine's, till the following Thursday morning when, presently after seven, it blew a most violent storm accompanied with so thick a fog, that nothing could be seen at a few yards distance, so that we all disappeared to each other. About noon it cleared, and the squadron was all in view except the Pearl, which we saw not for above three weeks afterwards. On the 18th of February in the afternoon, she rejoined us; when the Lieutenant informed the Commodore of the loss of her Captain, Kidd, who died on the 31st of January, thirteen days after their separation from us. He gave an account also, that on the 10th instant [of the present month, Ed.] he had seen five large ships which at first he took for our squadron, and so suffered one of them that much resembled the Centurion to come very near him, before he discovered the mistake; but then perceiving his error, he crowded all the sail he could and escaped them. By his description we concluded them to be five Spanish men-of-war.

This last intelligence of the Lieutenant's would probably have determined us against touching at St. Julian's, and pushed us in quest of the enemy, if there had not been a necessity for our putting in there to refit the Tryal, which was in a very inform condition. For this purpose therefore we steered thither, and on the 20th in the evening, we anchored in the bay. The Carpenters were immediately set to work, and some things requisite to the repair of the said vessel were supplied from our ship.

The death of Captain Kidd having made a vacancy on board the Pearl, our Captain the Honourable George Murray was transferred thither, and his place in the Wager filled up by Captain


Cheap, in whose stead the Commodore promoted his first Lieutenant Mr. Charles Saunders to the command of the Tryal. While we lay here we saw no inhabitants on the land; but many millions in the water of a shrimp-like fish, red as a boiled lobster, so that the sea appeared as blood.

The Tryal being ready, the refitting of which was the sole occasion of our tarrying at this port, Mr. Anson summoned a council of the principal Officers on board the Centurion, when the orders given at St. Catherine's relating to our rendezvous in case of separation, were altered or regulated according to the probable apprehensions he now had of future incidents.

On Friday, the 27th of February, the squadron weighed and sailed from St. Julian. On the 7th of March towards noon we entered the Le Maire Strait. The day was as bright as possible; we had a fine gale of wind, which with a rapid tide carried us through them, about twenty three miles, in little more than two hours. We were all in high spirits; we were on the verge of the Pacific Ocean, and fancied we had nothing more to do but traverse it to those happy coasts, whose golden stores were to recompense all our labours. We were ready to reflect on our first Captain, Kidd, as a false prophet for having, a few days before his death, pronounced that this voyage would terminate in poverty, vermin, famine and absolute ruin. But alas! no hopes could be more delusive than ours; instead of realizing these flattering dreams, we were just plunging into the bitterest calamities and great part of us into utter destruction. In short, we had hardly passed these Straits when the sky, before like azure crystal, contracted a most dismal gloom, presaging that terrible storm which instantly surprised us. At the same time the tide turned


against us and the whole squadron was in distress. But our ship the Wager, and the Ann Pink, were in the most imminent danger of any; for the tide driving violently to the East, and we two being the sternmost of the fleet, it was with the greatest that we escaped being wrecked on the horrid rocks of Staten Island.

This was the beginning only of sorrows. For above three months succeeding, we had almost incessant hurricanes and such mountainous seas as the most tried Sailors on board us were amazed at. Our ships laboured to such a degree and suffered such dreadful shocks that the Men could not keep their stations, but were so violently tossed that many were maimed and several were even killed. In truth, it is impossible by any words to convey you an adequate idea of the perils we were hourly exposed to, or the disasters we continually encountered. Every vessel was miserably shattered, and thousands of waves threatened to overwhelm us; so that we were under perpetual apprehension of foundering. And though now and then during this melancholy period we had tolerable intervals, these were but few and very short, rather enhancing than alleviating our toil and danger: for sometimes, encouraged by these flattering appearances, we ventured to spread our sails, as in favourable weather; when, without the least warning, the most furious gusts would suddenly burst out, tearing all before them.

On the 10th of March we lost sight of the Ann Pink, who joined the squadron again on the 16th.

On the 30th, the Gloucester's main-yard broke in the slings. This was an unfortunate incident that affected us all, as it must protract our continuance in these boisterous climates. For the more expeditiously retrieving this ugly


accident, the Commodore ordered several Carpenters on board her from the other ships. Ours was of that number. But alas! we ourselves quickly needed him equally as the Gloucester; for on the 8th of April our mizzen-mast, breaking two feet above the awning, was carried away with our main-top-sail yard; and, upon a rowl [roll, Ed.] of the sea, all the chain-plates to windward broke likewise.

You may figure to yourself what a condition we were now in, being without a Carpenter, whose help was so necessary to us in such a juncture, and who could not come to our relief by reason of the extreme severity of the weather at that time.

The very next day after our disaster, the Ann Pink likewise made signals of distress, having broken her forestay and the gammon of the bowsprit, and being in danger of losing all her masts.

On the 10th, we lost sight of the Severn and Pearl, never to behold either of them more.

On the 12th it blew a hurricane, with a prodigious swell. About seven in the morning, there broke a sea in the ship, which carried the Gunner over the wheel, bilged [sprung a leak in, Ed.] the cutter and did us some other mischief. Our Captain was at this time ill in his cabin. On the Gunner's acquainting him with the affair he deplored his condition which disabled him from acting in his own person as his station required, and gave the best directions his prudence could suggest on the occasion for saving the cutter etc. Hereupon the Gunner set himself with all diligence to execute the Captain's orders; got the cutter righted; scuttled the longboat, which the wave had half filled; and brought in the spritsail yard and jib boom, that they might not endanger the bowsprit.

On the 13th, the Commodore, being on the weather quarter, bore down and spoke with us.


He enquired whether our Carpenter was returned from the Gloucester; and on our Captain's answering no, and complaining of his detention there so long when the circumstances we were in so urgently required his presence, he undertook to order him on board. Captain Cheap also represented to the Commodore the miserable state of the ship; that the rigging was all ruined or gone, and that almost the whole Crew were down and disabled. The Commodore was sensibly affected with our case, his own being hardly better; he desired the Captain to take the most effectual measures for remedying what was amiss and to endeavour all he could to keep up with him.

The next day our Carpenter returned, to our great joy. That he came no sooner was neither his fault, nor the Captain of the Gloucester's, but of the weather which, for a fortnight past, was such as no boat could live in; and no sooner did the violence of it abate than he seized the opportunity. The moment he arrived he set about inspecting every thing belonging to his province, gave the Captain a faithful account of the shattered condition we were in, and told him how far in the present circumstances he was able to amend it. The Captain prayed him to do all in his power; at the same time insinuating that the mast's going away was to be attributed to the ignorance or negligence of a certain Officer under whose care the vessel was in respect of such matters; and that, if he had understood or done his duty, the mast might have been yet safe notwithstanding the chain-plates failing. This the Carpenter was very sensible of; but as the exposing or blaming another's mismanagement could neither prevent nor redress the mischief, but serve only to aggravate resentment, or create fresh discontents which, God knows, prevailed


already but too much amongst us, he heard the complaint with silence and hastened to his business. He soon fitted a cap to the stump of the mizzenmast, got up a lower studding-sail-boom and did some other repairs.

On the 19th, which proved an unusually fine day, we set to work on our rigging that was in a woeful condition, and bent and reefed a new mainsail, so that we began to appear somewhat better than a mere wreck. Towards the evening several of our people on the quarterdeck discovered the Commodore's lights at a great distance ahead. They were visible to the Lieutenant at nine of the clock, after which, neither he nor any other of us saw the Centurion more. It was a little odd and surprised both the Captain and the rest, that all the while the lights were in our view the master persisted in not perceiving them at all. This night we lost one of our Men, who had the misfortune to be struck overboard in handing the foresail. Next morning we lost sight of the Gloucester and Ann Pink.

We were now quite forlorn, being separated not from the Commodore only but from all the rest of the squadron. This gave us no real cause to apprehend any distress through want of provision; and yet some insinuations were presently thrown out, as if on this account we should be curtailed of our allowance. The Gunner, a day or two after we lost the Centurion, informed the Captain that a Sailor having come to the Steward for a pound of bread and asked whether they should have the same quantity of water as heretofore, the Steward had replied, no, G_d d_mn you [God damn you, Ed.], now the Commodore is gone you shall find the difference. Such a question, and such an answer, seemed indications of a mutinous disposition arising which, if inflamed by a notion of the Steward's being


warranted to say what he did, might produce very mischievous effects. The Captain therefore, to guard against any tumult of the Crew, ordered the Gunner to furnish each Officer that was not already supplied with a brace of [two, Ed.] pistols and balls; but without dropping the least hint that any notice had been taken of this matter.

On the first of May, the Captain consulted with the other Officers about the state of the ship, and they were unanimously of opinion that it was necessary for its preservation to cut away the best bower-anchor: for the shrouds and chain-plates being all demolished, there was no retaining that anchor without utterly hazarding the foremast.

The Gunner about this time pretended to foresee our approaching fate; and to ground his prediction, not so much on the shattered condition of the vessel, the violent storms or raging seas we had to encounter, as on the infatuated conduct of some of his superiors. He observed we lay to four nights together, bearing for the land on a lee-shore, when we had a fair wind for the island of Juan Fernández, which he thought to be the rendezvous appointed in case of a separation. He ventured to speak his fears to the Lieutenant. This gentleman answered that as far as he could find the first rendezvous was altered from Juan Fernández to an island in the latitude of 44 º S. He added that he had said a great deal to the C_____n [Captain, Ed.], to dissuade him from the present course, which was manifestly a dangerous one, but to no purpose, he being unalterably bent on pursuing it.

That we must be near the land was evident, a great deal of rock-weed floating by us. Our danger was the topic of much discourse; the Lieutenant still declaring that he had strongly urged the Captain at all adventures to go Juan Fernández, but could not prevail.


At length the Captain was pleased to talk with the Gunner upon the subject, asking him what distance he reckoned they were off the land? The Gunner answered he was sure they could not be 100 miles of it; but if he might judge by certain circumstances, very apparent to him, he should doubt of their being even 30 miles from shore. The Captain reasoned on what the Gunner alleged, with all imaginable coolness, and with that good sense that was natural to him. He told him he was mistaken in supposing they ought to bear away for Juan Fernández, which he perceived he and some others on board fancied, for that the Commodore had appointed Nuestra Señora del Socorro for the first rendezvous, and therefore he was obliged and resolved at all hazards to go thither. The Gunner represented that a rapid current and a Western sea would presently drive them ashore; especially as the ship had been always under reefed courses and without a mizzenmast; and in so miserable a condition that if it were possible, in such a circumstance, to bring her to an anchor, we should never purchase the anchor again. The Captain replied that currents, being very uncertain, were of no consideration in the present case; that he had no thought of coming to an anchor, as there were no soundings till within seven leagues of the land; that his intention was to stand off and on the island Socorro twenty-four hours, and if he did not in that time see the Commodore, or some other of the squadron, he would proceed to Juan Fernández. This, as near as I can remember, was what the Gunner reported to have passed between the Captain and him at this interview. It was plain to us he imagined his judgment much superior to his Commander's in these points; but that honest, gallant Officer had not only as upright views as any one in the whole


squadron, but was at that very time pursuing a wiser scheme than his adviser knew of, though it happened to be crossed by an adverse fate.

On the 13th in the morning, the Carpenter going forward to examine the chain-plates, thought he saw the land from the forecastle, and pointed the Lieutenant to it. But that gentleman fancying it could not be so, and one or two more that stood by affirming they perceived nothing of that sort, he did not speak of it to the Captain, which was a very unhappy omission. However, about two in the afternoon the Gunner, going upon the foreyard, discerned the land very plainly and ran immediately to alarm the Captain. He was surprised and thoroughly grieved at the tidings, which plainly threatened the misfortunes that actually followed; but he immediately recovered his natural fortitude of mind and behaved, in so unlucky and unlooked-for an emergency, with all the prudence and fortitude becoming a brave Officer. His orders were suited to the present exigence [urgency, Ed.]; but alas! there were scarcely any hands to execute them. Almost the whole ship's company were confined below decks, utterly disabled by sickness; so that all the Men we could muster (including Officers) capable of doing any thing were not more than a dozen. While the Captain was exerting himself with great spirit, a mischance happened to him also that aggravated our misery. By a fall he dislocated his shoulder, and was thereupon carried into the Surgeon's cabin. He was now rendered unable to act or to excite others by his presence and example; and this gave him a greater pain than the hurt he had received. Before he would admit of the luxation's [dislocation, Ed.] being reduced, he called for the Lieutenant and Gunner; he told them they could not be insensible of the danger we were in nor of the


M____r's [Master's, Ed.] insufficiency for the duties of his post; and therefore earnestly recommended to their care whatever might be thought of or done for our preservation. Indeed they needed not any incitements. Their own imminent danger commanded their utmost efforts and attention. But on the other hand, the symptoms of inevitable destruction inspired nothing but despair. They saw the necessity of making sail, as being on a lea shore, in order to crowd the ship off. But they saw as plainly the doing it was impracticable. We had for more than a fortnight been no better than a wreck; without a mizzenmast; the standing rigging and chain-plates, afore and abaft, mostly broken and ruined; the sails too rotten to be loosed, not one in the ship fit to be used without repairing. Nor were the externals of our situation a whit more favourable: the wind outrageous, the rain violent, and the atmosphere so gloomy that all beyond twenty yards was become invisible to us.

In this dismal condition we toiled the whole day and night of the thirteenth of May 1741. It was the eve of our long expected catastrophe, which befell us about five of the clock on the ensuing morning. For at that hour our ill-fated vessel struck abaft on a sunken rock in fourteen fathom water. No words can describe the horror that seizes every soul on such occasions. Those who are deaf to the most sonorous blasts of Aeolus [in Greek mythology, the god of the winds, Ed.], or whom Neptune's utmost fury cannot terrify, are yet startled by these shocking incidents. In other cases, destruction is at some distance and possibly not inevitable; but here it is at the very throat, as we may say, and has gripped the wretched prey. We could not let go the anchor soon enough to bring up the ship, as we were on all sides environed with rocks: so that she


presently struck a second time, by which blow the tiller was broken; and quickly after a third time, which was the last, for then she bilged and grounded between two little islands. The sun was just ready to emerge as this happened, and gilding with its rays the Eastern horizon. Light, how beauteous however in itself, had brought us no consolation, if it had not enabled us to discover the gladsome shore at the distance of little more than hundred yards off us. This was a cheering view, no small abatement of our calamity. It was a circumstance of mercy towards us, requiring the sincerest acknowledgments, that our vessel was not instantly dashed to pieces, where we must all have perished, but that our unfortunate lot was cast where our lives were however saveable.

I should in vain attempt to paint the dismay of every one of us in this deplorable crisis. You will perhaps imagine it was not without a mixture of devotion, of prayers for safety, of thanksgivings for deliverance from immediate death. Some few expressions of this strain indeed were uttered; but our Crew were not void of that infernal disposition which seems almost connatural [innate, Ed.] with Sailors; so that oaths and execrations greatly prevailed; and many of these wretches spoke and acted as if their preservation had been a motive to impiety and the most flagitious [disgraceful, Ed.] excesses.

The ship no sooner grounded but the Gunner got the barge, the yawl, and the cutter to be launched, and took all the measures that could be thought on for our relief in this disastrous situation. The Mate was instantly dispatched with the barge, to try if there were any landing; and to get a glimpse of the country, to know if it afforded any means of sustenance or shelter. At his going off, the Captain enjoined him to return as


expeditiously as possible, with a report of what he had observed, it being of the greatest concernment to us to be quickly apprised of these particulars. But, neither regarding the duty he owed his superior, or caring what became of us, being got to shore, he stayed there; so that we were frustrated of our intelligence, besides being deprived of the boat he went in. This ungenerous action, this vile behaviour, deserved the contempt and abhorrence of everyone; and he had not only these, but also the hearty curses of the whole Crew, who would have rejoiced in seeing the Earth swallow him. To retrieve this disappointment, the Lieutenant was sent with the yawl on the same errand especially to reconnoitre the place, and moreover strictly charged to bring the barge along with him, if the Mate resolved to continue where he was. Nobody had the least suspicion of the Lieutenant's serving us as the other had; for he discovered not any symptom of such a design but, on the contrary, had blamed the Mate's behaviour as severely as any one. And yet his own was too much of a piece with that person's; for though he returned the yawl by the Men that rowed him, he stayed behind himself.

As soon as the yawl came aboard, all the Officers united in persuading the Captain, who continued very ill of the hurt he had received by his late fall, to suffer them to carry him ashore. He was the more easily prevailed on to comply, as the fellows who had just been there gave some favourable account of it. He was accompanied by the Land-Officers and Midshipmen. There remained with the Crew, in the ship, the Master, Boatswain, Gunner, and Carpenter. The night coming on, it blew very hard, with such a sea that all on board looked every moment for the vessel's parting, and therewith an end of their miserable


being. In so dismal a state, you will think every one must be roused to repentance, or at least, that licentiousness would be utterly banished with detestation. But alas! so amazingly brutal were several of the Sailors, that the Captain was hardly off the wreck when they ran into the most enormous excesses. They got to the wine in the lazaretto [hold for ship's stores, Ed.]; and being inebriated, and raging mad, they broke open every cabin and chest, armed themselves with swords and pistols, ransacking and plundering every place where were any money or other things of value and threatening all with destruction that any way opposed them. What a horrible idea does this imprint of human nature! How much viler is it than that of the beasts, when uncultivated or corrupted! Though it was impossible to behold a scene thus shocking without indignation, yet was there in it one piece of madness that could hardly fail of provoking laughter. These miscreants in their ravage seized on the rich apparel of the superior Officers, and clothing themselves therewith, strutted about the deck like imaginary Princes.

The next day being the 15th, the Gunner, the Carpenter and a pretty many of these gaudy fellows went ashore; the two former carrying with them some powder, ball, and a small matter of provision which they had luckily secured from the claws of those harpies [greedy persons, Ed.]. Notwithstanding I was in a very melancholy mood, I could not help smiling to see the greeting these heroes met on their landing from the Officers who were along with the Captain, and who must needs be filled with the bitterest resentment, to see such a parcel of scoundrels sporting with distress and clad in the spoils of their treasuries and wardrobes. The Lieutenant of Marines (Mr. Hamilton) and the Purser immediately accosted them with pistols at their breasts,


demanding a surrender. The poltroons [cowards, Ed.] made not the least opposition, but tamely suffered themselves to be divested of all their acquisitions. Their splendour disappeared in a minute, and was succeeded by a dejection of aspect and behaviour resembling a condemned malefactor's.

Though we had escaped the devouring sea, our lives were hardly secure on the uncomfortable shore, where the inclemency of the weather, and the absolute want of conveniences, were enough to destroy what the waves had spared. The Captain at his arrival had taken up his residence in a little hut which he found erected to his hand, the workmanship, I guess, of some Indian. Others accommodated themselves as they could. The best shelter the place afforded was a spacious tree, under which a great fire was kindled; but it rained such torrents, that those who had betaken themselves thither were almost drowned; one of the invalids, unable to bear such a complication of distresses, gave up the ghost that very evening.

On the 16th it blew a storm, with a great sea. The Boatswain was one of those yet on board. He impatiently expected a boat from shore to be sent for him; but none appearing, he,and some of his drunken comrades brought a quarterdeck gun, a four-pounder, to bear on the Captain's hut and fired two shots, which went just over it.

The tree above mentioned not proving so good a cover from the rains as we wished, some of our hands were this day employed in hauling up the cutter and raising her on props; and this was so contrived that, comparatively speaking, it made us a tolerable dwelling.

The little stock of food which the Gunner and Carpenter brought off the ship was soon consumed, so that we should have been in a famishing


condition, if we had not shot several wild fowls and gathered a variety of shellfish; all which, with a good deal of celery, (the only vegetable the place produces) afforded a very agreeable refreshment to those who had for a long time fed only on salt meats. However, on the 18th and 19th the Captain ordered some hands on board to try if they could recover any provisions. On one of these days they brought off two casks of flour and some wine, on the other they got some beef and pork out of the hold. Nor did they, in rummaging, overlook the Carpenter's room where they met with nails and tools, which in our situation were of infinite service.

On the 20th another trip was made to the wreck to get off the longboat, which was happily effected. Several Men were now found dead in the ship, some of them drowned. These latter it's most likely perished by drinking till they were unable to move out of the way of the water which flowed into the vessel.

For five or six days successively this business was carried on of scuttling the ship, and a great deal of provision of diverse sorts was brought on shore, besides wine, brandy, rum and the like, so that we had a kind of magazine established; and on the 25th of May we went to a regular allowance of half a pound of flour to each man per day, with one piece of pork for three Men.

And now, if a regular economy and discipline could have been maintained, we might in some degree have alleviated our misery; but alas! we soon fell into disorders at land, not less tumultuous, and more mischievous to the generality, considered as a body of Men, than those on board.

The Boatswain came not off the ship till the 20th instant, four days after his firing at the


Captain's hut. It is not to be wondered at if so insolent a piece of temerity procured him a very warm reception. In truth our Commander, though a good natured and generous gentleman, was of a fiery temper and could not tamely put up with affronts or injuries, even in circumstances where it would have been good policy to do so. The rebel (such he deemed him) no sooner entered his presence, but he saluted him with the titles he thought he deserved, and struck him to the ground with his cane. The bystanders imagined he was killed, for he lay as dead for a while; but in a few minutes he revived, and perceiving the Captain had a pistol cocked in his hand and verily thinking he intended to shoot him, he boldly presented his naked breast. The Captain's brave soul relented at this compound symptom of intrepidity and submission, so he turned from him without any more sign of anger, only saying he deserved what he feared.

About this time we were visited by the Indians. A canoe of them came alongside the wreck while the Men were scuttling her [(apparently) removing contents from the wreck, Ed.]. They seemed a parcel [group, Ed.] of harmless and even civil creatures. They gave us to understand they were somewhat of Christians by crossing themselves, a practice I presume they have learnt by intercourse with the Spaniards. The people on board gave then two bales of cloth, treated them with liquor and directed them to the Captain on shore. He gave each of them a hat and a soldier's coat, which highly pleased them. We endeavoured to get some intelligence from them that might be of use to us, but we obtained little or nothing. Two days after they brought us two or three sheep, with some very large and well tasted mussels. We, on our parts, regaled them as well as we could. They are of a low stature, black-haired,


wearing hardly anything but about their waists, although the country is very cold and they are almost perpetually on the water.

The ill humours of several amongst us fermented apace. Discipline was an insupportable grievance to them. They behaved as if they thought all authority had perished with the ship, as if all were now upon a level, or as if the Officers' power subsisted on the water only and expired when they came to land. On the other side, the Officers carried it as strictly as if all things were in a right train, which was certainly a great indiscretion. They appeared on the beach in arms, narrowly inspecting everyone who returned from the wreck, to see they secreted nothing but delivered whatever they brought to the Purser. And for the more effectually preventing embezzlements, they would not allow the boats going off or working by night. This last was complained of as a most irrational prohibition, it being known by experience that, beside the advantage of the moon's light, the tides and weather were after sun-setting most favourable to the purpose.

On the 3d of June, no fewer than ten of our Men deserted, among whom were the Carpenter's mate, the Armourer, and the Boatswain's Yeoman. One Buckley told the Captain this day that a plot was laid to blow him up, together with the Surgeon and Lieutenant of Marines. Whether there was any ground for this information, or whether it was not a scheme only for terrifying and disturbing those gentlemen, I won't determine; but this colour there certainly was for the report, that a train of powder was found, said to be laid by the deserters, with an intent of executing that villainy in the night before they went off. I own I ever looked upon the whole affair as a sham: for if these


renegades had formed such a conspiracy, what hindered their accomplishing it?

There was one Henry Cozens, a Midshipman, among us, of an insolent, querelous [complaining, Ed.] temper, whose misbehaviour exposed him to a tragic fate, and proved an occasion of great troubles to every one of us. In truth it had a baleful influence over all our future proceedings. I will give you a brief account of the matter. This fellow, being employed to rowl [roll, Ed.] a cask of pease [peas, Ed.] up the beach that was pretty steep, stopped in the way, complaining it was too heavy for him. On this the Captain, who stood by, told him he was drunk, as in truth he was. To this he answered very saucily, which raising the Captain's passion: he said, you scoundrel, if you can't do it yourself, get some one to assist you. Cozens hereupon bawled out for more hands; but none coming, and he not only standing still but talking rudely, the Captain struck him. This did but aggravate his audaciousness, and he poured out a deal of foul language, so that he was committed to the store-tent. The Captain going thither in the evening, this turbulent creature renewed his abuse in very opprobrious terms. On this the Captain attempted to strike him again; but was prevented by the sentinel, who said he should not strike any prisoner of his. Cozens was so incensed at this treatment from the Captain, and at being confined, that he endeavoured to stave a cask of brandy, and became so outrageous that, for fear of greater mischief, it was judged best to release him. All this fell out on the 7th day of May, being Sunday.

The fellows who deserted us on the 3d instant, when they formed the design of going off, fancied that we were on the continent, and so presumed they should easily get to some town or


village, where they might meet with a compassionate reception, and perhaps an opportunity also of being forwarded to their own home. But finding on trial that they were wretchedly mistaken, that the place we were at was an island, and that none of the good things they imagined were to be found thereon, they were not a little perplexed. They were sorely put to it for provisions, being driven chiefly to feed on seaweed and shellfish; and must have been entirely confined to this poor diet, if they had not fortunately lighted upon a cask or two of beef, and one of brandy, which floated from the wreck. Four days after their elopement [unauthorized departure, Ed.] the Gunner and Carpenter went to them, to try if they could persuade them to return to their companions and to their duty; but their advice was ineffectual; the gentlemen were determined at all hazards to pursue their intention of going Northward; and being now apprised they were not on the main [mainland, Ed.], they had come to a resolution of getting what fragments of the ship they could, and building out of them a punt to cross the channel in; and they were so elate with this project that they rejected with a very supercilious air all the persuasions of or two envoys. However, next day the Gunner went to them again, and with him the Doctor's mate; the aim of these two was principally at the reduction of William Oram, a Carpenter, and a very useful hand, who was one of the renegades. The recovering this man would not only have been directly serviceable to us, but have been a singular prejudice to the deserters, as they depended much on his abilities for effectuating their designs. The Gunner was obliged to be very secret in his solicitation of this person, for had he been suspected by the rest of seducing him, it might have cost him his life. He assured him of a pardon from the Captain, if


he would forsake his seditious party and go back; which accordingly he and two others did.

On this day, a quarrel happened between the Surgeon and Cozens. The former coming on some occasion to the tent where the other lodged, words arose between them; Cozens followed the Surgeon out, still provoking him with abusive language, till at length blows ensued, when Cozens was overpowered and his hands were tied behind him; in which condition he continued some hours, but not in the least mended by it. The very next day, when the provisions were serving, he somehow came to hear that one of the Men's allowance was stopped. This concerned him no more than it did everyone else. However, as his delight was to fish in troubled waters, he officiously ran to demand the reason of it. The Purser, knowing his restless disposition, and having been in his turn very lately embroiled with him, swore he was come to mutiny, and without more ado fired a pistol at his head; which would probably have ended him, had it not been diverted by the Cooper's striking it aside, just as it went off. It were to be wished his death had then immediately happened; for it would have been less misery to himself, and attended with far less mischief to others; but it was the will of Providence that our Commander should be the instrument of his unlucky fate, and thereby bring upon his own head an almost insupportable load of vexation. In few words, the Captain and the Lieutenant hearing in their tent the discharge of the Purser's pistol, were both of them greatly alarmed; the latter ran out with a loaded piece in his hand, and seeing Cozens with the face and gesture of a mere fury, and the Purser raging at him with the titles Rogue, Incendiary, and the like, called eagerly to the Captain, repeating


the Purser's accusation. The Captain having sufficient reason to apprehend everything of this sort from the fellow, and so taking it for certain that what the Lieutenant bawled out was the real case, he snatched up a loaded pistol, which lay on his table ready cocked, and stepping hastily out cried, where is the villain? The unfortunate wretch, perhaps conscious of his innocence, and moreover inspired by his native insolence, advanced with an audacious bravado almost to the Captain's nose; who, thinking he intended some violence, which it was necessary to prevent, let fly the pistol that was in his hand too precipitately, and shot him in the cheek. Cozens immediately dropped to the ground, where he lay a while bleeding and speechless, but sensible [conscious, Ed.]. The Captain ordered some who were by to carry him to the sick tent, where the Surgeon's Mate dressed him and probing the wound, felt a ball somewhat below the right eye. The Surgeon himself refused meddling with him, which some imputed to a revengeful ill-nature, because there had been just before a bickering between them. But we may as justly ascribe it to the Surgeon's prudence, who thought if the patient should die under his hands it might be suggested that he, bearing him a grudge, had injured him, or at least not done what he might to save him. Besides, as he saw nothing in the case above his Mate's ability, there seemed to be no pressing cause of his interfering. And, to speak plainly, the Captain's aversion to the fellow was so intense, that as nobody supposed he was very solicitous for his preservation, so no one who desired to be on good terms above [(that is) with the higher-ranked Captain, Ed.] was overforward [too keen, Ed.] to administer any relief to him. This was obvious; for the Mate, being [assigned] to extract the ball (as he did very skilfully), was desirous some more experienced person might be at the


operation to direct or assist, should any unforeseen difficulty occur; and the Surgeon having declined being at all present, that favour was requested of Dr. C____y [Oakley?], of the Land-Forces, who answered as if he would be there; but when the hour came, he refused going because, as he said, he perceived it was not agreeable to the Captain. This was the report of the Surgeon's Mate. The Carpenter gave out also that going the next morning on some business to the Captain's tent, he saw the Surgeon by the way, who asked him how that unhappy creature Cozens did? The Carpenter answered he had not seen him that day. The Surgeon then said he would have visited him, but the Captain would not give him leave. After the extraction of the ball, the wound dressed kindly, and there was a likelihood of his recovering. Hereupon he expressed an inclination of being moved to the tent where he had lodged before this mischief befell him. The Gunner and Carpenter, whose tent that was, not presuming to act in this matter without the Captain's permission, waited on him for that purpose, earnestly praying him to indulge the sick man's desire. Here was an occasion offered for discovering that humanity of temper which is supposed to be in every one towards enemies themselves in distress, and the want of which is a disreputation [discredit, Ed.] to a man's character, even in the eyes of the hard-hearted. The Captain had nothing to sacrifice but his revenge in granting the request of these petitioners; and his doing so might have been considered as some atonement for the cruelty he had exercised on the wretched object, in whose behalf they interceded. But so far was he from condescending to what they most reasonably asked that he vehemently replied, No: the scoundrel shan't be gratified. These things being reported among the Crew


and, according to the usual manner in such cases, much aggravated, provoked them greatly and made the Captain to be excessively hated. The people propagated the disaffection from one to another in their cabals [secret discussions, Ed.], muttering it would be more honourable of him to dispatch the prisoner at once, than force him thus to languish out his miserable hours, in a doleful, cold, wet place, dying as it were by piecemeal.

It's to be wished this gentleman had been of a disposition a little milder and more appeasable. Severity is sometimes necessary to answer the ends of government; but he who would rule over the hearts of men, and that surely is the most absolute and lasting dominion, must by all means shun the imputation of being inexorable. We find Mercy ascribed even to the Almighty, in Scripture, as a ground or reason for his being feared. — Yet, it's but fair to say the Captain's austerity, in respect of Cozens, might not proceed from inhumanity or mere resentment (for though warm and hasty, as aforesaid, he was of a generous, forgiving nature) but from apprehension of its being fitting at that time and in those circumstances, to behave with intrepid steadiness, and to betray no symptom of irresolution or weakness.

On Wednesday, the 24th instant this unfortunate, contentious fellow expired, after lingering fourteen days from the time of his being wounded. His shipmates buried him with all the decent formality their situation would then admit of. There were no tears shed at the funeral, for those distil but rarely from the eyes of Sailors, but several resentful speeches dropped from envenomed tongues, and the obsequies were solemnized with volleys of scandal. It was among other the like things said, that though the deceased was a


conceited, busy fellow and would be always meddling, that was not a sufficient reason for killing him; that he had never appeared in arms on any occasion since they came ashore; and that to shoot a man through the head on a mere surmise, without any inquisition or process of law at all, was something worse than manslaughter, and what the Captain's commission would not bear him out in; and that he should find if ever they returned to England.

Almost every day the boat was sent off with a competent number of hands to the wreck, in order to save and bring off al the provisions they could, and whatever else might be any way serviceable to us, for support and shelter while we were obliged to continue on this desolate spot, or to facilitate our returning home. But though the Men were industrious enough in this respect, and recovered a great many things, that would signify little unless a good economy was observed on shore. It was requisite every article should be most frugally husbanded, and that no one should be suffered, by fraud or violence, to take more than his share. But how necessary soever such a discipline must be, it was impossible to maintain it. And, notwithstanding much precaution and vigilance, there was no preventing the villainy of some among us, who evaded all our circumspection and surmounted all the obstructions to their roguery that could be contrived. Though we thought the store-tent was narrowly watched, yet every now and then it was robbed. In the night of the 10th of July half a barrel of flour was taken away; and a quantity of brandy on the 1st of August. On the 11th of the last named month, a rascal was detected as he was crawling from under the tent, with as much


flour crammed into every place about him that could hold any, as was equal to the daily allowance, at that time, of ninety Men; besides one piece of beef under his coat; and three pieces more the rascal had conveyed out before, and thrown into the bushes for concealment, to bring away when a favourable opportunity offered. It was not questioned but the sentinel, who had then charge of the tent, and was the thief's mess-mate, had a hand in, or was at least privy to the robbery. They were both Marines. As soon as they were secured, the Sailors, who were most bitterly enraged, poured upon them a very plenteous shower of hard names and execrations; and then, taking arms as if they were going to invade or repel an enemy, ran to the Gunner and Carpenter, bellowing out all that had happened; and clamouring to have the stores removed from the tent they were in to that where those two Officers lodged; that they might be safe under their inspection and guardianship; and demanded that an exemplary punishment should be inflicted on the offenders. These two gentlemen, assuming a patriot's air, expressed the highest resentment of what had fallen out, and agreed that nothing was too bad for the robbers; but with all this they urged several considerations for appeasing the complainants, and engaging them to desist from any rash or violent measures. They represented to them the heinousness and woeful effects of mutiny; and assured them, if they would but have patience, and wait a legal proceeding, nothing should be omitted on their part for procuring them justice. While they were uttering this harangue, a message came from the Captain, requiring them to repair immediately to his presence. His business was to give them a


circumstantial and full account of what they had been hearing of, according to some intelligence he had received. He enlarged on the horridness of the fact, and lamented that he and his Officers had no proper jurisdiction over the criminals, being Marines, but assured them he would apply to Captain P_____n [Pemberton, Ed.] for a Court-Martial, thinking the crime, considering its execrable tendency (which was starving the whole company) deserved no less than death; in which sentiment he had the entire concurrence of all he spoke to.

No sooner had the Gunner and Carpenter left Capt. C___p [Cheap, Ed.], but they were sent for by Capt. Pemberton, who on his part also declared his detestation of what had happened, and protested he would go as far in punishing the criminals as the Martial Law would permit, and that he was ready on this occasion to act in concert with Capt. Cheap and the other Sea-Officers. All sides being seemingly thus agreed, the Articles of War were consulted; but, alas! it appeared by them the fault was not capital, and would bear only whipping, or some such corporal chastisement. We were heartily displeased at our revenge being thus far limited; but as we durst [dared, Ed.] not go beyond our commission, we resolved to be liberal enough of what was in our power, so we judged each of the culprits six hundred lashes; to which Capt. Cheap added the shortening of their allowance, reducing them to half of what they had before. The day following, August the 15th, this sentence was partly executed, when they had two hundred stripes apiece given them. On the 16th they underwent the same number. But now truly their own Officers were touched with an unjustifiable compassion, and took upon them to excuse the remainder. This indulgence, so


contrary to Pemberton's former protestation, was very displeasing to Capt. Cheap and all the Sailors; and to testify their dislike thereof, as well as to counterbalance it as much as possible, they came to a resolution that these Sons of Rapine should have no provision at all out of the store-tent for the future.

Though the treatment of these miscreants was hardly adequate to their demerit, yet one would have thought it a sufficient example to prevent the like enormity. But we found it otherwise for, on Sunday the 23d instant, the store-tent was again robbed, of no less than twelve days' brandy for ninety Men. The rogues were discovered by the Boatswain and information given of them. They were two sentinels; and it was very remarkable, that these very fellows had seemed the most forward of any in contriving and proposing a method for preventing such depredations. Hereupon the Lieutenant, the Gunner, and the Carpenter repaired to Captain Cheap, to consult about the affair and deliberate what should be done with the offenders. They were unanimously of opinion they merited a halter [rope around the neck; (that is) a hangman's noose, Ed.]; and they would certainly have conferred the reward upon them if, unluckily, here also the rogues had not been subjects of another jurisdiction. They could neither be tried or punished but by the Land Officers or, at least, with their concurrence; and these were so unaccountably merciful or remiss, that the more prudent zeal and resolution of the other gentlemen were rendered almost wholly ineffectual: for notwithstanding all Captain Cheap could say for a due severity, the good-natured Pemberton, on whom their sentence chiefly depended, decreed them a very moderate correction. This lenity of those who, on this occasion, should have exerted


their authority to the utmost, and when the most terrifying examples were indispensably necessary, was extremely culpable; and the bad effect of it soon appeared, for on the 15th of September in the night, the store-tent was again robbed, of brandy and flour. The tidings hereof set all the people in an uproar. Indeed it might well be expected, considering their circumstances in regard to provision: for our whole stock would allow but a very scanty portion to each per day, for any length of time, though husbanded with the greatest economy; and as we knew not how long we might be detained where we were, so likewise some competency [enough to live on, Ed.] was to be reserved for subsistence in our passage, when Providence should afford us an opportunity of going off; for which purposes we lived even now on seaweed. How therefore was it possible for us, without the hottest rage, to see these miscreants, while we were submitting to the bitterest hardships for the preservation of our lives, sacrificing them, as it were, to their appetites. As the Marines were but too justly suspected to be concerned in this robbery, it was insisted that the tent belonging to them should be narrowly searched. This task was readily undertaken by the sailors and, on rummaging it, a quantity of flour and some bottles of brandy were found concealed. This brought all of that denomination into suspicion, and the whole body was looked on as a band of villains. Captain Cheap summoned his Officers on this occasion, and sent for those of the Land Forces: for it was thought good to maintain a face of business and authority, though little or nothing could be effected. Captain Pemberton was much out of order, and could not attend, but he signified that he would abide by, and act according to, the judgment of


those that did. Upon this a sort of Court-Martial was formed. Nine Marines were accused of the robbery. Five of these, dreading conviction, fled to the deserters; four appeared before our awful tribunal, and were found guilty. These last were doomed to remain confined till an opportunity offered for carrying them to the main [mainland, Ed.], there to be left to shift for themselves with the foresaid deserters. Accordingly, on Friday the 18th, they were transported to the place of their destination, together with four other delinquents, who had lain some time under sentence and who, being thus joined with a like number of their brethren, made up a decent execution. But to be serious, it was a melancholy thing to see so many, of a few creatures just preserved from the jaws of death, acting so as to deserve a worse fate than they had escaped. Miserable indeed was or condition at this time! Our wickedness merited all our misfortunes, and, to say the truth, our misfortunes seemed to keep pace with our crimes. With a little yet in hand, we were almost starving, or feeding on the sorriest trash, under a continual dread of absolute want; on a desolate, unfriendly shore, void of every domestic comfort; without any tender relatives to hear our moans, or sympathize in our afflictions; thousands of miles from our native home, and that not to be reached, if at all accessible, without traversing a sad variety of perils; plagued by bodily disorders, animosities, contentions, and dismal apprehensions of future evils. And to have all this still more embittered by the felonious practices of these Sons of Rapine [thieves (possibly repeats the phrase used by Voltaire to describe the Mongols, Ed. ], was beyond a Stoic's patience.

There was not the least prospect of our getting off this forlorn place by any ship. So our thoughts were necessarily directed to the longboat, as the


principal means under God for our deliverance and preservation. In short, we had no imagination of any other. It was concluded therefore that she should be enlarged, to put her into a condition of doing us so great a service. On Thursday the 18th of June, the Carpenter, having been several days past preparing all things requisite to this design, cut her in two, in order to the lengthening of her eleven feet ten inches and half by the keel. From thenceforth he worked at her daily, and with indefatigable industry, as far as the avocations I have been speaking of would allow him; so that by the 10th of October she was finished, to our unspeakable joy, and in a manner that bespoke the ingenuity and skill of our diligent operator.

Indeed we found the Carpenter's ability of great use to us at land, as well as on the ocean; for by his assistance, soon after coming ashore, we had erected several conveniences for our habitation; which would hardly have been done, with half the commodiousness and expedition they were, if at all, without his handicraft. One of our houses, I must tell you, deserves somewhat of a description. By way of eminence, I entitled it the Hotel. It was a superb structure, with distinct apartments for almost twenty persons. We had not, I own, any fine slate or enamelled tiles to roof it with, but it was neatly as well as substantially thatched. If it was not encrusted with Parian marble [from the Greek island of Paros, Ed.], like some palaces, or if its inside were not spread with the labours of the Tirian loom [reference to purple cloth produced in the Phoenician city of Tyre (modern-day Lebanon), Ed.], it was most richly covered, externally as well as internally, with several hundred yards of English broadcloth, besides shalloon [twilled woollen fabric, Ed.] and camblet [type of woven fabric, Ed.]; so that, to divert our melancholy, we sometimes indulged in woeful jest on the rich garniture of our lodgings, Had this fabric been of brick or stone, we should


at one time have been under great apprehension of its ruin; for on the 25th of August 1741, we felt four violent shocks of an earthquake. This concussion of the Earth was attended with heavy rains, and a very high wind at North.

I must tell you, while our house was building there arrived five canoes of Indians, who brought with them fish and a few sheep; the company consisted of men, their wives and children, in all about fifty souls. They hauled up their vessels and erected four wigwams which they sealed with bark of trees and sealskins. This induced us to think they intended tarrying with us. I have already mentioned these people as inoffensive creatures, and even courteous in their way. They live almost perpetually in smoke and burn fire continually, even in their canoes. They seem to delight also in nakedness; for as they came to us with little or no covering so, though we always clothed them yet whenever they returned, it was still in the same condition; that is, without any raiment, except a bit of woollen stuff like blanket, about their waist or above their shoulders. During their abode with us, the women went off frequently in the canoes. We at first thought their errand was to get mussels, a fish they are very fond of and eat much; but upon observing, we soon perceived them diving. We then supposed it was for pieces of beef or pork that might wash from the wreck; but when they came ashore, we found they had been in quest only of sea eggs [sea urchins, Ed.], with abundance of which they now and then came laden from these expeditions. Their manner is, to jump out of their canoes about a mile from shore in five or six fathom water, with a sort of hand-basket between their teeth


into which they put all they gather. They keep so long under water, as would scarcely be thought possible by such as have not seen it. One might almost consider them as amphibious animals. They rarely feed on any thing but what they get out of the sea. There is no deference paid to the fair sex among these barbarians. On the contrary, they are far more exposed to labour and hardships than the men; in short, they are forced to do all the drudgery. One of our folks now departing this life, we had an opportunity of observing these savages' behaviour towards the dead. They sat continually near the corpse, narrowly watching it, covering it very carefully and frequently casting their eyes on the face with much concern and gravity; at the funeral their deportment was altogether becoming. No Scythians [in antiquity, a people skilled as horsemen and warriors, Ed.] were ever abler than these creatures to resist the weather; their infants had not a rag to defend them from the rigour of it, though it was then as intensely cold as our severest winters. Their neighbourhood was not disagreeable to us, but rather of service, by the females going out a-fishing every tide and supplying us with a pleasing part of our diet. However, we had the benefit of their company but a fortnight. They came to us on the 25th of June, and left us on the 9th of July following. Some of our Men, it was said, had disgusted them by some imprudent freedoms with the women.

While these things passed, our people grew every day more and more out of humour, both with the Captain and with one another. There were two or three among us that affected to be wiser, and to know more than the Commander and all the rest. They often shook their heads, scattering infection, and insinuating in compliment to their judgments, that if the Captain would


have consulted with them and taken their advice, we should not have been in such doleful circumstances. By discourses of this nature the seeds of sedition were sown. Though perhaps they had never taken so deep a root and produced the baneful fruits that followed to this unhappy gentleman, if they had not been nourished and brought to the grievous maturity they reached by his immoderate choler. He was sufficiently apprised of the mutinous disposition and murmurings of the Crew before the affair of Cozens happened. It had been well therefore, if he could in that instance have restrained his passion, or testified a remorse for the unhappy issue of it (I mean the shooting of him) or at least a compassionate regard of the sufferer after that rash action; but this being altogether wanting, and a behaviour quite the reverse of it assumed, many of the Crew, who by no means approved of the fellow's insolence, were however on that score implacably incensed against the Captain and delighted in all opportunities of creating him vexations and mischief.

But whatever dissensions, whatever brigues [intrigues, Ed.] or cabals [plots, Ed.], were amongst the Men to his prejudice, there was still some deference towards him, at least in outward appearance, until disputes arose about the best course of getting home. The Gunner, I think, first started and was very sedulous [persistent, Ed.] in blowing up this controversy. On the 30th of July, he had borrowed of the Captain, Sir John Narborough's Voyages [an authoritative reference book to the Patagonian seas, published in 1694, Ed.]; and immediately perusing that book, he from thence pretended to learn that the only way for escaping the Spaniards in our return and safely reaching our native country, was by proceeding to the Brazil coast through the Straits of Magellan. This he suggested that evening to some of the Officers, who did not disapprove the


notion. These having reflected thereon, a company of them meeting on Monday the 3d of August following, the point came then to be warmly canvassed. Those who were more immediately concerned in navigating the ship, whose business was to work the bearings and distances, insisted much on the reasonableness of the Gunner's opinion and were earnest for moving it to the Captain as a thing which he must come into. Hereupon a paper was drawn up, to be offered him, containing the grounds on which their judgment was founded as to this matter. The inferior Crew [seamen, Ed.] no sooner heard of it, but they came pressing to sign it, with vociferous tokens of approbation and joy. Nor was there any then (I mean of the lower order) seeming to dissent from it, but the Captain's Steward; and of the Officers present, all likewise subscribed it, except one or two.

The next day about noon, the Gunner, the Carpenter and the Boatswain repaired [went, Ed.] to the Captain, and with an assuming air read to him a kind of memorial [memo, Ed.] importing [communicating, Ed.] "That they, and all whose names were underneath it did, upon mature consideration, think it the best, surest, and safest way for the preservation of the whole body of them, to proceed through the Straits of Magellan for England." The Gunner and Carpenter, who were the chief agitators in this matter and the mouths of the Company on most occasions, appeared first in the list of underwriters, after whose names came a train of forty one more. Besides Captain Pemberton's (of the Land Forces) and two Lieutenants, whose subscriptions [signatures, Ed.] appeared below those of the rest, with a line or two over them signifying that they had sufficient reasons, from the


above-mentioned of their brethren, for consenting to go Southward. Though this application must be extremely disagreeable to the Captain, he received it however without any visible emotion; only saying (very calmly, or rather indifferently) he would consider and give them shortly an answer. With this civil dismission [dismissal, Ed.] they retired, but not without a sensible [feeling of, Ed.] discontentment. On the morrow they assembled again when the Master, the Carpenter, the Master's Mates and the Midshipmen were deputed to wait on the Captain with a fresh message. Being admitted, they demanded to know whether he resolved with reference to the proposal they had made to him the day before; adding that the duty they owed to their own preservation must take place of any other interest or obligation; which he very well understood to mean, that if he did not concur with their design, they should no longer regard or obey him. This threw the Captain into great perplexity. In his heart he absolutely disapproved their scheme; but he saw the violence of their present inclinations would push them on extremities, if he testified his dislike of it. He studied therefore prudently to temporize [delay making a decision, Ed.] with them; hoping either some incident might occur to alter their views, or that their passions would by degrees subside and they might become more disposed to be influenced by his representations, and more conformable to his authority. So he repeated his former reply, desiring they would allow him a little further time to consider of the thing, after which they should have his final determination.


On this they again left him, but with such an apparently aggravated disgust that it was obvious they would continue no longer uncertain, and that it was absolutely requisite to deal with them explicitly. The next day therefore, about noon, he sent for the Lieutenant and, a while after, for the Gunner and Carpenter. When they were met, after mutual civilities, he addressed them very pathetically. He told them, "He had maturely considered their project; that his mind was so disturbed by the thoughts of it that he could not sleep; that he feared they had not weighed the affair rightly; that they should reflect on the almost insurmountable difficulties of the enterprise they were for undertaking, as they had now near a hundred and seventy leagues to the Straits of Magellan, with the wind in their teeth, and a great distance to run after passing them, with the same disadvantage, beside the additional one of finding no fresh water in all that course."

The Gunner, with his usual forwardness, instantly undertook to remove these objections, in which he could not perceive one spark of reason. He boldly assured the Captain that, however he might fancy, they were not really above ninety leagues from the Straits; that, according to an accurate calculation he had made, the boat would carry a month's water, at a quart to each Man every day; and he let him know, moreover, that it was agreed among them to insist on it, as a bargain with his honour, that when they went hence they should be allowed, without control or obstruction, to put ashore when they needed water,


wherever it was to be had and the weather permitted. He also descanted [commented, Ed.] on the inconvenience that must unavoidably attend the going a different way from that in question; and the utter improbability of meeting the Commodore, even if they should reach Juan Fernández, who had most likely, he said, shared our hard fate, or perhaps had utterly perished. Here the Captain interrupted him. "Mr. Bulkeley, said he, I no more expect to find the Commodore at Juan Fernández than you do, or any of your comrades; my intention is to seek him at Valdivia, where I hope to see him, for there he finally ordered the squadron to rendezvous when he delivered us our last instructions."

Much debate and altercation there was on this subject, managed chiefly by Mr. Bulkeley the Gunner. The Carpenter spoke less, but it was very upbraidingly [reproachfully, Ed.] when he did. He told the Captain, "It was owing to him we were brought to the sad condition we were in; that if he had conferred with his Officers, we might have avoided the misfortune; that it was obvious, and he must know, the ship was altogether unfit to come in with the land, and that he should therefore have industriously shunned it, instead of which, every step had been taken to throw us thereon, and such as could hardly fail of issuing [ending, Ed.] in our present misery." The Captain on his part declared, he was ready to agree to any thing, or to go any way, for the People's preservation and deliverance; but still pleaded for his own system, and endeavoured to convince them of the disasters or distresses they must look for in the prosecuting [pursuing, Ed.]


of that they espoused; he protested he had done nothing on board (even where his conduct was most questionable and had been, as he now found, unhappily for him, greatly mistaken) but what the orders he had from the Commodore indispensably required and what, in the sincerity of his heart, he judged best for the general interest. And as the point was beyond dispute of great consequence, he urged them to a further deliberation; which, he said, they could not reasonably object to, as they were not yet in a readiness for departing nor could be of several days, and it was time enough to determine what course to steer when they were. The Gunner replied, "There was no leaving the matter any longer in suspense, for that the People would never be easy or at quiet, nor the work on the longboat go on, while it was unsettled; and therefore there was a necessity for his resolving and explicitly signifying his mind very speedily." The Captain, desirous by all means to be rid of their importunity [persistent request, Ed.], said he designed quickly to have a consultation with all his Officers, which was the properest method of proceeding. He then, by way of a complimental dismission [polite dismissal, Ed.], asked if they had any more to offer. Yes, answered Bulkeley, one thing more, Sir, which is, "That when you go from hence, you do not come to an anchor, nor weigh, nor alter course, without the advice and consent of your Subalterns." On this speech the Captain hardly restrained his passion; but as he was sensible [aware, Ed.] how dangerous it was to irritate where he could neither curb or punish, he contented himself with replying upbraidingly [reproachfully, Ed.], "I was your


Commander, Gentlemen, till the ship parted or as long as any stores or provisions could be recovered out of her, and I know not how I came to be deprived of my commission now." The Gunner with the rest told him, "They had ever obeyed him with the strictest punctuality, and would still spend their lives for his defence and the support of his authority, so long as he acted according to reason and for the common welfare." The Captain, in return, acknowledged they had hitherto behaved dutifully, and as they were the persons in whom he had always confided, he persuaded himself they would not deviate from that character. These disputes and civilities were equally insignificant; the contending parties were neither reciprocally convinced nor reconciled.

On the 7th instant, the Navigators busied themselves in making an accurate calculation of the bearings and distances of the places along their intended course through the Straits of Magellan. These turned out so favourably as greatly encouraged the People to persist in the resolution they had formed of going no other way; and the suspicion they entertained of the Captain's secretly traversing [thwarting, Ed.] their design gave them so mutinous a turn that it was with a good deal of difficulty they were kept in any order.

On the 8th, in the morning, the Gunner went to the Lieutenant, praying him to acquaint the Captain that all his Officers were ready to give sufficient reasons for their preferring the Straits of Magellan to the way he had proposed, and that they desired he would admit some of them to a conference with him in the


afternoon for that purpose. Accordingly, after dinner, the Captain sent for the Gunner and Carpenter, the Master and Boatswain. The latter were gone out on a very pressing occasion, that is in quest of somewhat to eat, for our allowance of provision from the stores afforded us but miserably short commons [little food for meals, Ed.]: the two former therefore only appeared to the summons. The topics on which this conference turned, as well as the disposition and behaviour of the parties, were so much of a piece with circumstances of the same nature in former instances that it is needless to particularize [mention in detail, Ed.] them. The Captain still retained his opinion of the expediency of attempting a passage by the North and said all he could to reconcile them to his judgment; yet professing an entire readiness to concur with the main body and to share their fate, whichever way they determined to proceed. But Mess. Bulkeley and Cummins were not to be influenced by any thing the Captain offered. Instead of that, they repeated all the arguments they had ever urged on their side of the question. After a long and ineffectual disputation, the Captain entreated these two loquacious gentlemen to sleep once more over the affair and then to oblige him with another interview, along with their absent associates. As they promised to gratify him in this respect, so they did not fail of the appointment but waited on him the very next day, as he had desired, the Master and Boatswain going with them. Here was now a recapitulation of all that had been alleged pro and con, for and against the Straits of Magellan. In the management of this dispute


there was much vehemence on the Men's side. The Captain at length yielded so far as to agree that, in case the wind did not set in against us, at the sun's crossing the Line [on the day of the Equinox, September 22-23, Ed.], he would go as they desired. After dismissing these troublesome fellows, he took an opportunity of sounding several of the People on this head [subject, Ed.], and he found them all so prepossessed in favour of what their leaders had resolved that he might easily have foreseen they would be desperate if he refused to comply with them.

In truth it was not strange that a set of poor creatures, in such deplorable circumstances, should be excessively fond of any thing that promised an expeditious deliverance. For they were now driven almost to a famine, which occasioned the breaking open and robbing the store-tent, so frequently as I have related. Their allowance at this time was only a quarter of a pound of flour each Man a day, beside what they could procure from the rocks, (and of these spoils of the ocean they were every now and then disappointed by the violence of the weather,) so that slaw [chopped greens (like cabbage), Ed.] and seaweed, fried with the grease of candles, picked up alongshore, was esteemed a dainty repast, especially after they had improved their cookery so far as to dip these delicate fritters in a thin batter before they put them into the pan. In short, so extreme was the severity of the season [(that is) the prevailing circumstances, Ed.], and such difficulty was there for the most part in procuring even these wretched supplies I have now mentioned, that we were often in suspense whether we should stay in our tents and starve or go out in search of them.


On Thursday, the 27th of August, there happened a very high dispute among the Crew, in which some of them expressed an inclination of going Northwards in compliance with the Captain's disposition. The Gunner and Carpenter were mightily alarmed at this, supposing the Captain had spirited up a party against their scheme, which they regarded as a kind of subornation [inducement, Ed.] of treason against his Sovereign the People. Hereupon they had recourse to the Lieutenant, to consult how they should manage on this momentous occasion. This gentleman advised them to draw up a new instrument or remonstrance [protest, Ed.], declaring the resolution of the ship's Company in general, for the Straits of Magellan; and without admitting any more excuse or procrastination, peremptorily to require the Captain's signing it as a necessary means of putting a stop to any further contests on that subject, and of uniting the whole body in a vigorous prosecution [pursuit, Ed.] of the most effectual methods for obtaining a happy deliverance. Bulkeley and Cummins, the principal movers, approved of this counsel and drew up a paper accordingly, which they put into the Lieutenant's hands, desiring he would present it. Finding they were so ready to ask his advice, and to act as he counselled, he was encouraged to break his mind to them, on a point which I believe no one but he had ever yet dared to think of. In short, on undertaking to give the paper in compliance with their request, he took the opportunity of saying, "That he could not suppose the Captain would refuse the signing of it; but that if he was so weak and self-willed, the best step they could


take, was to put him under an arrest for the killing of Mr. Cozens; in which case he himself would, with their approbation, assume the command; and then their affairs would be conducted to the satisfaction of the whole Company, without being any longer liable to the obstructions they now met with from the Captain's perverseness and chicanery".

Here the Gunner and Carpenter certainly deviated from their duty: they should not have harkened to such a motion of the Lieutenant's without opposing and expressing a due abhorrence of it; whereas they received it rather with approbation. These two Men were all along, as I have already observed, the principal agitators in the project of going homeward through the Straits. I am inclined to think they were influenced by honest motives; and I own they might very justifiably endeavour to engage the Captain to act as the common interest required; and in default of his doing so they might have left him and taken their own course; but to lay violent hands on him was, in my opinion, altogether indefensible: it was undeniably an illegal, mutinous procedure. The Captain had entertained a great jealousy of the influence they both had over the People, knowing them to be active spirits and fond of being considered as persons of consequence; but they had of late so abounded in professions of duty and attachment to him that they gradually effaced those disadvantageous impressions, and insensibly instilled a confidence in their fidelity, notwithstanding their appearing so often at the head of his opposers; nor could he ever conceive, that any thing would have induced them to go those lengths against


him that we shall find they afterwards did. What helped to ingratiate Bulkeley very much with the Crew, and gave him an extraordinary ascendance over them, was a notion he industriously spread of going into danger of his life, on account of his being looked on as a most strenuous promoter of that project they fancied to be so entirely for their advantage; and the Quartermaster (one Noble) ministered [provided, Ed.] him a fine opportunity for such an insinuation by threatening to shoot him, professedly for his forwardness in that affair.

The day after Bulkeley had drawn up the aforesaid paper, and delivered it to the Lieutenant, he, the Master, the Boatswain and Carpenter, with one of the Mates, and a Midshipman went to the Captain as deputies from the People, who had all armed themselves and seemed quite ripe for sedition. When they came into his tent they found the Lieutenant with him. The Officers being seated, a consultation was held about the punishing of Smith and Butler for robbing the stores, as I have formerly mentioned. When this business was done, and the two fellows were sentenced to be transported to the Main, or to some more desolate island than that we ourselves were now on, Bulkeley opened the matter that had been yesterday concerted with the Lieutenant, and which he expected that poltroon [coward, Ed.] would have seconded with great zeal and boldness. He went on, telling the Captain, "The People were in a mighty ferment; that they had been long very uneasy; and that they were now out of all patience, as they could not but see there were contrivances hatching to prevent their going


to the Southward." This is the sum of what he uttered in a diffuse, pathetic manner. The Captain heard his harangue with great moderation, answering, "That it must appear to every considerate person very unseasonable for Men to raise disputes and foment disturbances about the way homeward, when they were in no condition of going at all; that this could serve no good end, but rather aggravate our present misfortunes; that he had before assured them, it was quite indifferent to him whether he went Northward or otherways, having no desire or design but what he thought most conducive to their welfare; and that which way soever they went, he was resolved to take his fate with them." The Gunner, as I have hinted, supposed the Lieutenant would have exerted himself on this occasion, and have delivered the paper, which had been entrusted with him the day before for that purpose, and which had been drawn up in conformity with his counsel and direction. But he sat absolutely silent, as if he were no way concerned in the subject of the discourse. The inconsistence of this behaviour surprised Mr. Bulkeley, nor could he hardly forbear breaking out into invectives against such cowardice or treachery, as he deemed it. However, instead of indulging his resentment by abusive language, or any action that might create a quarrel there, he chose to reproach tacitly, by boldly performing himself what the other had advised and had undertaken, but pusillanimously [faintheartedly, Ed.] declined when it came to the execution. So he took out of his pocket a copy of the said paper,


which he had reserved to himself (for every Officer had a copy, all having agreed in the contents of it) and read it to the Captain in a theatrical tone, requiring him, when he had done, to sign it. This, as might be expected, threw our Commander into a violent passion. Hereupon Bulkeley gravely put the paper up again without a word more of subscribing; instead of which he introduced a discourse on the most effectual means of securing a sufficient quantity of provision to carry off with us. But the Captain was so incensed against him that he would take no notice of any thing he said; and so the conference ended.

On the breaking up of the assembly, the Gunner, the Carpenter and other malcontents, having received so little satisfaction from Captain Cheap, resolved on going to Captain Pemberton to advise with him how they should behave in the present exigence [urgent situation, Ed.]. As they approached his tent they were surprised to see a flag erected on it. Coming there, they found him on the outside, seated magisterially in a chair, surrounded with a numerous levee [assembly, such as held by the King, Ed.] of people. Dazzled with this blaze of power, the good gentlemen all, except the Lieutenant, paid him a suitable respect; and acquainting him with what had just passed at Captain Cheap's, and how badly their expectations there had succeeded, they made him a tender of [offered, Ed.] their obedience, declaring they would in this conjuncture [critical situation, Ed.] punctually submit to his orders. Pemberton did not seem to be ambitious of this honour but, with a modesty that we know is peculiar to great minds, after a short consultation, agreed with them; that if Captain Cheap


persisted in refusing to sign the abovesaid paper, which he advised them to offer him once more, he should then be deposed, and the command be transferred on the Lieutenant; at the same time promising to support them in this and every other measure they took for the good of the Company, at the hazard of his life. This condescension [graciousness, Ed.] of their new patron, and a declaration that so much flattered their hopes, threw the whole Crew into an extravagance of joy, which they uttered in loud huzzas and repeated acclamations, for England — for England! The clamour immediately reached Captain Cheap who was gone to bed, but arose, being waked by the noise. Coming to the door of his tent, he called to the People to know the meaning of this uproar, and what they wanted. On his learning somewhat of the matter, he sent in haste for all the Officers who had been with him that morning, and demanded of them the reason of such a riot. He was answered, "That since he would not sign the paper they had presented him, and took no care for the security of their provisions, the People had unanimously resolved to take the Command from him and transfer it to the Lieutenant."

I need not say how such a declaration must affect the Captain. Nothing could be more unjust than the imputation cast on him of carelessness, it being evident he had done all that was in his power for the preservation of the stores, and for the punishment of those villains who had from time to time stolen them. However, though such usage might have warranted the harshest appellations [protests, Ed.], he permitted


no violent passion to break out beyond what a manly resolution required. He turned himself directly to the Lieutenant, asking with a very elevated voice, Who is he that will deprive me of my command, is it you Sir? — This question was accompanied with so stern an aspect as quite terrified the hero; in short, he was appalled to such a degree that he looked like a ghost, and could hardly answer — No, Sir. In this condition the other Officers (who could not forbear smiling at his timidity) left him with the Captain to testify, no doubt, his abhorrence of the treason they had endeavoured to bring him under the guilt of. They in the mean while repaired to Pemberton's tent, to give him an account of what had passed and to consult further with him about their proceedings, now that the Lieutenant had been frightened into a refusal of the chief command. They were not here above a quarter of an hour before Captain Cheap sent for them again. They went, and several of the common Men along with them. Bulkeley was the first called into the Captain's chamber of presence. There he saw his Honour sitting with a pistol cocked and resting on his thigh. Observing this terrible apparatus he retreated; desiring one of the Mates who was there, and on whose judgment in navigation the Captain very much relied, to tell him that the Gunner did not choose to approach him while he had that instrument of destruction in his hand. Bulkeley himself was indeed armed, had his pistol cocked, and had by him also several of the Men with muskets charged; however, with all these safeguards, he did not care to face the Captain in that hostile


posture. Not that he was so afraid of his own person, as of being obliged to commit some violence on the other's in his own defence; for knowing how obnoxious he must be to him, and reflecting at the same time on his excessive bravery, that sometimes rose even to rashness, as in the recent instance of poor Cozens, he had cause, as he judged, to fear lest the Captain might make a desperate attempt on his life, or he might be forced to obviate his own destruction at the expense of his Commander's. No sooner was the Captain apprised of his apprehensions (which in truth were groundless) but he threw his pistol aside, and came forth of the tent; and, with that humanity which ever appeared in his words and actions when he was free from passion, asked the People what their grievances were; protesting, in the name of God, that he was willing to the utmost of his power to redress them and to go with them Southward, if that was their determination. Hereupon they all roared out, as loud as boars "We are determined, that a reserve of provision for our voyage shall be effectually secured, and the residue equally distributed among us."

On this occasion Captain Cheap behaved with a calmness not so usual with him as might have been wished, and showed that prudence which should ever accompany authority, and which is most requisite to enforce it. So discreet and gentle a conduct in time past would have prevented (at least some of) the misfortunes now befalling him. With all the dignity of his office, and yet with the sweetness of a friend, he represented to them, as far as their rudeness and impetuosity would permit,


the unavoidably mischievous effects of what they required in regard to the distributing of the provisions. And with reference to the charge of his taking no care of the stores with which they had just afore loaded him, he told them he might well be surprised at so groundless an accusation, seeing he had encouraged every measure for their security, or for detecting and punishing the embezzlers. But he might almost as well have argued with the winds, or endeavoured by soothing language to calm a tempest, as plead with these creatures. They were not to be convinced of his concern for them in former instances, or of the reasonableness of his present advice. For though in this case, respecting the provisions, he had the concurring suffrage [support, Ed.] of the other Officers, yet, in truth, these had lost their authority as well as the Captain, and were as little regarded when they did not fall in with the bias of the Crew; so that all which could be offered hardly restrained them from demolishing the tent where the stores were deposited and taking them away by force. But notwithstanding that with great difficulty they were withheld from entirely executing this intention, yet they obstinately insisted on the removing them from that place. When they had obtained this, they began digging a hole for the brandy and proposed burying a certain part of it, as a reserve for their voyage home, and immediately sharing the remainder. Had their demand been fully gratified, the most pernicious consequences might have ensued; they would have rioted in spirituous liquor, and, when intoxicated, have broken out into the most shocking disorders, which must probably have issued in murders at


that time and famine afterwards. At length, with much ado, they were prevailed on to be quiet; and repair to their several quarters; but that could not be effected without a promise of allowing every common Man a pint of brandy from thenceforth per day. This concession quieted these stupid animals, though, on the least reflection, they must have seen that this indulgence might prove their misfortune: for, by computation, it was plain their liquor, at this rate, would hold out barely three weeks; and they had abundant reason to fear being detained on the place much longer. At parting, the Captain gave the whole company good words, telling the Officers, in particular, that he would comply with every thing agreed on to promote the general interest.

The temper of the People seemed for the present to be somewhat quieted, but the pacific disposition was soon expelled by the turbulent passions that were becoming habitual in them. Vexatious incidents succeeded one another daily, and gradually paved the way for that Coup d'Eclat [(French, striking event, Ed.] which soon followed, and which you will quickly have an account of.

On the 24th of September the Captain sent the Gunner with the barge on a cruise, to make the best observations he and his comrades could of the Southern coast. There went with him, for that purpose, Mr. Jones the Mate, the Hon. Mr. B___n [Byron, Ed.] a Midshipman, and Mr. Harvey the Purser; who was a good draughtsman. They returned on the 28th. According to their relation, the first evening they were out they found a good harbour. Here they went ashore, and meeting a fine large bitch ready to


litter, they killed the poor animal and made a delicious entertainment of her, roasting one side and boiling the other. Next day they proceeded on their discovery, finding the coast mostly very dangerous. Towards night, however, they found a good place to shelter, into which they ran the barge. Landing here, they shot several wild fowl, some of which they roasted, putting the rest into what we call a sea pie; so that they feasted again very elegantly. Next morning the weather proving hazy, they spent part of the day in walking up the country, Southward, from whence they returned in the afternoon and, putting out, soon got into a fine, sandy bay which Bulkeley told us he thought as commodious a harbour as he had ever seen. They went ashore here, and fared in like manner as they had done at other places on the preceding nights. The day following they found another very capacious bay, as nearly as they could judge, eighteen leagues deep and twelve over. Here they had a good view of the coast and saw green peas a-growing, as Sir John Narborough had formerly on the same spot. This expedition took up four or five days.

When they came home, as I call it, they found the longboat almost finished; whereupon the Gunner, with the Lieutenant, the Master, the Boatswain and the Mate went to the Captain, to inform him of this agreeable circumstance, and to advise with him about some orders they thought necessary to be observed on board the vessel, for preventing mutiny and maintaining a proper discipline during their voyage. The Captain having heard


what they had to offer on this head, desired a while to consider of it; giving his word, that all things should be managed for their advantage, as far as he was able to promote it.

Two days after, the Carpenter, as his custom was, sent his bottle to the Captain for his allowance of wine. The Messenger came back with it empty, saying the Captain would not suffer it to be filled, and protested he should not have any. This refusal of his, if not utterly unjust, was certainly unseasonable, considering how easily every one was then irritated, and how much cause there was for his avoiding every unpopular act. But it seems that in a late discourse among the People, concerning the Captain's behaviour (in which notice was taken of his partial favouring of some, merely through affection, or, for bye ends [other reasons, Ed.], and treating others with unmerited severity; and particularly of his allowing more provision than was their share to such as he liked) the Carpenter had said "He was above being biased, or bribed to any man's will, by a bottle of brandy or the like, and scorned being a tool to any one for the sake of his belly." These words were officiously carried to the Captain's ear, and he took them for a scandalous reflection on him, as suggesting that his favours were intended to pervert those he bestowed them on to fulfil some base and wicked designs; or that he had actually attempted to corrupt the Carpenter's integrity, and bring him over to his side in the present contest; so he was determined to lay hold on this opportunity of disobliging him, to show that he had no such unworthy view, or any sinister purpose to answer in regard to him especially.


Next morning the Lieutenant reported about, that the Captain was resolved to maintain his authority in its full extent and to govern as heretofore, according to the rules of the Navy. This threw the People into a new ferment. It was said by some of them, and not without reason, that, as their present circumstances had not been precisely foreseen, and so not provided for by any laws or instructions yet in being, it was necessary for them now to act in a manner very different from that which might have been proper in other situations; and therefore, to think of governing here by the rules of the Navy was a wild conceit, which they could have no respect to. Not through any undutiful contempt of those rules, or of their Commander, but because, in their present case, such rules could be no adequate measure of his government nor of their obedience. And for this very reason (that is, because neither the rules of the Navy nor his commission were suited to such a state as theirs) they were not obliged to acknowledge the same authority in the Captain here, or in their passage home, as he had on board till they were wrecked. Nor could they, with any safety to themselves, allow it him; being sure that if they did he would behave as arbitrarily as ever; and as his conceitedness and neglect of his Officers, whom he was above consulting, very much contributed to the distress they were in, the same power, with like opportunities of exerting it, might produce the same or worse effects in time to come.

This afternoon, those very fellows that had been so eager a little before for securing a reserve of provisions, and had dug a pit for the


safer keeping of the brandy, having devoured all they had above ground, now as impetuously insisted on the taking up and dividing that which they had buried; nor could any arguments prevail with them to be at quiet, till some of the liquor was got at, and each Man had half a pint of it given him. By this means our subterranean store was considerably diminished.

On Thursday, the 8th instant the Gunner, reconnoitring the powder, found twenty-three half barrels of it; and considering that we could not well find room in the longboat for more than six of them, or could hardly have occasion for even that quantity, he prudently thought the best way would be to start the overplus [empty the surplus, Ed.] into the sea, and fill the emptied casks with water for the voyage. Hereof he spoke to the Lieutenant, wishing he would acquaint the Captain with his project; as he did not dare to do it himself, the Carpenter and he having absolutely resolved never more to go near him. This was a commission which the Lieutenant would not accept; for though he was not influenced by the same cause as the Gunner and Carpenter in declining an interview with the Captain, yet he was under a restraint, rather more cogent. The reason of their determining to have no further intercourse with that Officer was his obstinacy which, as they pretended, rendered all their applications to him fruitless; but that which wrought upon the Lieutenant was bodily fear; for he alleged that he had sufficient ground to apprehend the Captain would surely be the death of him, if he came in his way.


But though the Lieutenant was thus out of the question as to himself, he undertook the affair immediately, by engaging the Master to go to the Captain about it. The Master easily consented, expecting a very civil audience, and could not but smile at the objections which others had made to the errand. But he was in a different mood when he came back and ready enough to declare, in his turn, that he would never approach the Captain again if he could any how avoid it. In a word, he had received from him a very short and haughty answer to his humble representation; strictly forbidding him, the Master, or any one else, to start [(that is) pour out, Ed.] a grain of powder, or destroy one individual thing without an express order from the Captain; concerning which they should know his will, after he had considered of the matter. Whether our envoy exaggerated this affair and made the Captain's behaviour worse than it really was, I cannot be positive; but this I may affirm, that the report of it greatly heightened the People's resentment and rendered them yet more susceptible of the worst impressions to his prejudice; such, indeed, as they must surely have rejected (as they ought to have done) if all regard for him had not been at last eradicated from their breasts.

Captain Pemberton (of the Land Forces) seized this opportunity of our ill humour, and coming on the beach in the afternoon made a harangue to the Seamen, setting forth the maladministration of Capt. Cheap, by which all of us had so bitterly suffered; he then required their assistance for securing his person and confining him for the murder of Cozens, which


act alone (he said) was sufficient to justify their doing it. This proposal, he assured them, did not arise from any spite or prejudice against the Captain, but purely from a sense of duty, which obliged him thereto, and for neglect of which he was liable to called to an account at his return into England. Nay, as he added, they might every Man of them be deemed as accessories to the bloody fact if they refused to concern themselves in the thing that he now required of them.

Pemberton found but too ready a compliance with this strange motion. The whole Company presently assented to do as he desired, and unanimously agreed to surprise Capt. Cheap in his bed the next morning, and to confine Lieutenant H_____n [Hamilton, Ed.] along with him.

The Captain had not the least suspicion of this dangerous conspiracy, nor did any hint of it transpire, so that he was entirely off his guard. This shows how friendless he had rendered himself by his unseasonable austerity; else it is hardly to be imagined that a confederacy should be formed by such a number of people, without some alarm being communicated to him by one or other of the parties. But as he received this kind office [service, Ed.] from no body, he became an easy prey to his enemies. For, on Friday the 9th instant, they repaired [went, Ed.] to his tent as they had concerted, in a body, before he was up, and instantly became masters of his person, his arms, and every thing they could lay their hands on belonging to him.

This outrage was committed by the common Sailors, who, at first, only appeared; the Officers staying without doors, in a readiness


to abet and support their tools [agents; (that is) the Sailors, Ed.], in case of opposition. The Captain finding he was quite overpowered, did not vainly offer to resist, as any efforts that way would have been a folly; but, with a voice and countenance that were altogether becoming both his injured authority and present unfortunate situation, loudly demanded, "What they meant by such an unparalleled insolence, and where were his Officers?" At these words the Master, the Carpenter, the Gunner and Boatswain, who overheard them, rushed in. The Captain then addressed himself to them, saying "Gentlemen, are you sensible of what you are a-doing, or aware of the consequences you must reap from so atrocious a villainy?" They answered "Yes Sir, we have done nothing here that is not the effect of sober consideration; nothing but what is our duty, as subjects of Great Britain; that is, to secure and carry you a prisoner to England, there to be tried for the murder of Mr. Cozens; and this we do at the instance of Captain Pemberton, who required our assistance herein, and it is evidently our bounden duty." "What" replied Captain Cheap, "has Pemberton to do with me? Is he your Commander, or am I not still so? There are my instructions, (taking them out of his pocket and reaching [handing, Ed.] them to the Master) read them, and then judge if my conduct has in any wise contradicted them. What then can you mean by such a proceeding?" To this they answered, in nearly the same terms as they had done before. And when he persisted with great vehemence, that Pemberton had no power over him, and upbraided


them with using him thus, in a manner he could never have expected from his own People, they frankly declared the real incentive of their behaviour. They told him "That what he exclaimed against was owing to himself; that he had shown no solicitude for their deliverance from that desolate place, or their comfortable support while they were detained there; that, so far as they could see, he minded not whether ever they had an opportunity of getting to their native country, or whether they had any provision to sustain them in the passage; so that, in short, he seemed to aim at their destruction instead of making their preservation his concern."

In these upbraiding strains, and with a deal of confused vociferation, they persecuted the poor Captain for near half an hour; while they were hardened against all the remonstrances he could make, of the impudent falsehood of their charge, and of the punishment they would certainly incur if they returned home, for their traitorous doings.

But no one's insolence was so great on this occasion as the Boatswain's. The Captain had struck him formerly in a passion, and for this he now reproached him with his peculiar bitterness and foul language. His behaviour was so provoking that we would certainly have undergone a severe chastisement if the Captain's hands had been quite at liberty.

The Captain, thus secured, was mighty desirous of continuing however in his own tent; and being absolutely in their disposal, he very respectfully requested this favour of his new Masters; but they, judging the Purser's tent


a more convenient place of confinement (as that joined Mr. Hamilton's, whom they had made a prisoner also, and so one guard might serve both) refused to gratify him in this particular; so he and his baggage were removed thither by their appointment.

On Saturday the 10th instant the Captain, being told the People were all in a hurry for going off that afternoon, sent for the Lieutenant and Gunner. Neither of these good men having the same objections to an attendance on his Honour now, as you may remember they had formerly (one through fear of his life, the other because the Captain was so perverse as not to yield in every point to his superior wisdom) they obligingly went to him. When they were come, he inquired of them concerning what he had just heard of the People's embarking. That, they assured him, could not be so quickly as he was misinformed it would. He prayed them to go to Capt. Pemberton however, to know what he intended to do with him at going off, and to bring him an answer to that message; for he found, as he added with a sneer, his fate was under the direction of that hero. These worthy friends undertook this business with the utmost seeming alacrity; but no sooner were they out of the Captain's sight than the Lieutenant was seized with a qualm, and declined it. Mr. Bulkeley was much displeased with this behaviour, and went to Pemberton alone. After a formal discharge of his errand, he expected no less than some compliment to his own importance, by a discourse perhaps on the present posture of our affairs, and acknowledgments of the mighty


hand he had in bringing about the revolution which had now happened, or advising with his deep wisdom about the subject of his commission; but, without a syllable of this nature, he no sooner asked about the Captain but he was dismissed with this positive, brief declaration, "It is my design, Sir, to carry him prisoner to England, as I am obliged." Our Gunner did not suppose the Land Officer would be so laconic, but he must be content; and so returned immediately to Captain Cheap, in no very good humour, with this peremptory resolution. The Captain, seeing him come in alone, asked what was become of the Lieutenant and whether he had been to Pemberton along with him. Bulkeley answered in the negative. At this the Captain uttered several warm expressions against the perfidy and ingratitude of the fellow, as he scornfully termed him. Nay, he seemed far more incensed by this base and pitiful behaviour of his than by the haughtiness of Pemberton; more provoked when he heard how he had served him than with the bitter determination Bulkeley had brought him.

In the evening of this same day the Captain sent again for the Gunner and Lieutenant. The latter was not over fond of seeing him; however both went. The Captain's first compliments on the Lieutenant were not, to say the truth, a grain below his merit. He then talked of their carrying him bound to England, and vented himself on this topic in so feeling a strain as would affect the most savage temper; carefully abstaining from any harsh or reproachful reflection on any one. He


thought probably, by this discourse, he might draw from these two Men a fuller discovery of the prevailing sentiments, disposition, and designs of the people in respect of him; but if this were his view he was disappointed, for they had nothing more on these heads [topics, Ed.] to impart than he had been already apprised of. The thread of their conversation naturally led to that old bone of contention, the Straits of Magellan. The sound of these words was the most grating that could be in the Captain's ear; while, on the other hand, they seemed the Gunner's most exquisite delight. The dispute on this head was as sharp as ever it had been heretofore, and Bulkeley went off as well satisfied as ever with the conquest he had gained by his arguments.

The Captain was but too sensible of this Man's influence, not only over the lower Crew, but even several of the Officers, to like of his being out of humour; and was on that account sometimes obliged, in policy, to treat him with more regard than he usually did his inferiors and with some show of confidence. So, to solder up the breach this confounded passage of Magellan had made between them over night, he sent for him again next morning. After previous civilities he spoke to him thus. "Mr. Bulkeley, I have been basely surprised here, and am under a force, but I am still, by His Majesty's commission, your Commander, and you must certainly one day, all of you, answer for this violence on my person, which is a downright invasion of the King's authority. I acknowledge you are a parcel [group, Ed.] of brave fellows, and I have a proper esteem of you as such, but you have


transgressed all bounds of duty; your courage has run up to frenzy. I hoped for better effects of your prudence, in particular; you have talents superior to many, and a capacity for leading others into wider measures. The People are bent on a most extravagant [going beyond reasonable limits, risky, Ed.] enterprise, in which I fear they will encounter insuperable dangers and perish, instead of pursuing a rational course, which I have earnestly advised and through which I would have ventured my life at the head of them. To prevent my opposing this unwarrantable proceeding, they have wrested that power out of my hands, which you know I was invested with, as your Commander, and which I had no intention of exerting but for the general good, and have made me a prisoner. In this shackled condition I tell you plainly, I will not be carried off the island unless by main force; I had rather be shot dead upon the spot. I wish you all well at England; and if ever you reach it, as I pray God you may, I conjure [appeal to, Ed.] you to make a fair and candid representation of what has happened; that is, what I have done, and how I have been used. In the mean time, I desire I may be suffered to remain here, and so I would have you tell the People."

Bulkeley was really an honest hearted fellow, and however he might disapprove the Captain's conduct in many instances, (as indeed they generally differed in opinion) he was no enemy to his person, but ready enough to pleasure [please, Ed.] him in any thing that did not clash with his favourite scheme; so that he was very well disposed to forward this motion about the


People's leaving him at liberty behind them. No sooner therefore had the Captain started it than, with great solemnity of phiz [facial expression (slang, from physiognomy), Ed.], and a low congee [parting bow (on leaving someone's company), Ed.], he immediately sallied out from his presence and went directly to the rendezvous, to lay it before the Company. "Gentlemen", says he, "I have made a long stay with the Captain, but I hope it has been to some purpose. He has dropped a hint, at parting, thought I think we ought to improve [put to advantage, Ed.]. In short, I perceive his inclination is to be left behind on the island. I think our refusing to comply with his desire in this matter will be unreasonable, unkind, and perplexing to ourselves. We cannot incur any penalty for leaving him here; we have had no writ of habeas corpus [(Latin) instruction requiring a person to be brought before a judge, Ed.] obliging us to remove him; but if we carry him home in fetters, or any ways under restraint, an action of false imprisonment may lie against us all. — And it may not be, let me tell you, in Captain Pemberton's power to excuse or indemnify us."

This speech was, I assure you, as persuasive as any that ever came from the lips of Cicero or Demosthenes [famous orators of ancient Rome and Greece, respectively, Ed.]. There was not one dissenting voice in the whole assembly. The oration was no sooner delivered, but all approved and complied with it; not only agreeing to suffer the Captain's continuance on the island, as that urged, but to leave him all the necessaries and conveniences of life they could possibly spare him; nay forsooth, they would moreover, in this fit of condescension into which Bulkeley had thrown them, resign him the barge and yawl to try his fortune with, as


he pleased, if he could persuade any of the Men to risk theirs along with him. Somebody, on this, officiously [obligingly, Ed.] put the question, Whether any there had so much complaisance [courtesy, Ed.], as to bear him company? But that was going a little too far. And now the genuine spirit of marine brutes, which Bulkeley had charmed for a few minutes, recovering itself, broke forth in a general cry, "For England — for England — let him stay behind, alone and be damned." However there were two who ventured to single themselves from the herd on this occasion, and expressed a willingness to continue on the place and share the Captain's fate, whatever that might be. These were Lieutenant Hamilton and the Surgeon. This overture of theirs was at first received with some contempt and indignation. They were considered as schismatics [guilty of divisiveness (by analogy with a religious sect), Ed.] and were falling under the odium and reproach usually bestowed on that character. But on one of the Fellows crying out very opportunely, "Sink their bodies, my Boys, if the silly sons of bitches will run to the Devil, what's that to any one?," and another answering, "Aye, by God, Jack, you're in the right," all acquiesced; and these two gentlemen were allowed, without further abuse, to stay with the Captain — to his great consolation. Although, to say the truth, they were not so much influenced in this choice by friendship to him, as by an apprehension of the dangers and distresses attending the course they declined.

The Captain had now, in our wise Folks' imagination, virtually resigned his power and in some sort submitted to their authority. On


this presumption they set about framing a new polity or constitution; by which they elevated the Lieutenant to the supreme dignity, but with certain restrictions. They then drew up an instrument of government, the preamble of which set forth the maladministration and numerous misdemeanours of the abdicated Commander; this was followed by four articles, that were to serve as a rule of the future proceedings of all ranks. There were forty-eight hands to this paper.

On Monday, the 12th of October, in the morning, the longboat was launched, with great transports of joy, and christened the Speedwell. No ceremony that could be performed on the occasion was omitted.

This same day they loaded the vessel, putting the provisions and necessary utensils on board; not forgetting, at the same time, to make a partition of the Captain's, the Surgeon's, and Mr. Hamilton's respective shares, in a due proportion; all of which were severally delivered to each person as had been promised.

On the following day a messenger was sent to the deserters, (who ever since their first going off had continued a distinct body, and with whom we reckoned those fellows who had been transported for robbing the store) to know, if they liked, to join with us now in going away, or to remain, and take their lot with the Captain. They were given to understand, that if the former was their option, they should be received, and treated in all respects on the same footing as ourselves, without any resentment of what had passed; whereas, if they preferred the other,


we would set apart, and leave a proportionate share of every thing we had, for their service after our departure. This was in all points a generous offer, and was accordingly entertained with the warmest acknowledgments. After some deliberation, and consulting among themselves, they pitched on the latter alternative; and, with many thanks to their old friends, declared their resolution of staying till another opportunity presented for removing, as that couldn't now be done without much inconvenience to themselves, and greatly incommoding those who had them this kind proposal. In the mean while, they said, they should gratefully accept any allotment of provision that we could afford them. This answer closed the negotiation, and we punctually performed all we had promised.

These matters were transacted and made an end of by eleven in the forenoon, at which time all that were determined for moving embarked, being eighty-one Persons, fifty-nine on board the Speedwell, twelve on the cutter, and ten in the barge: for Captain Cheap would not deprive the Company of the two latter, which they had offered him, foreseeing they would need them.

Just as we were going off, Bulkeley would run to take a final adieu [(French) farewell, Ed.] of that gentleman, and give him a friendly embrace. He returned seemingly much affected with the tender reception he had found, and the melting farewell at parting. Some of the circumstances we fancied were of his own invention, as they were quite unsuitable with the gallant spirit of that haughty Officer, whose genius and


disposition were formed to command, but never could descend to cringe or wheedle. To hear Bulkeley's moving account, you would have thought he was painting the last separation of David and Jonathan.

You may now fancy us embarked, entering on our important voyage, all of us stocked with eager desires, feeble hopes, and gloomy apprehensions. Danger hastily pursued and overtook us. We were not out of Wager's Bay, as we called the place of our embarkation, when the Speedwell split her topsail, and was at the brink of perishing on the rocks. However, it pleased God, by the assistance of the barge, which came to our succour, and the force of her own oars, she was recovered from this imminent hazard. At four in the evening we anchored in ten fathom water, a fine bottom. The barge and cutter went ashore; those on board them, and several from the Speedwell, choosing rather to spend the night at land, though forlorn and desolate, than in the vessels, where they were miserably straitened [restricted, Ed.]. The next day, in the afternoon, having fair weather and smooth water, we sailed again, cruising about, to try the Speedwell; she worked very well; so, after a few trips, we returned, and anchored for that night on the spot we went from.

This place we called Cheap's Bay. And here, in one of our phrensical [(perhaps) frenzied, Ed.] fits, from the returns of which we were not yet freed, an odd sort of memorial was drawn up, addressed to the Lords of the Admiralty, acquainting them with the reasons for seizing on the Captain, and afterward leaving him behind, and at


liberty, on the island. This paper was signed only by ten of the hands, in which number were included the Commander and Surgeon of the Land Forces.

The following morning, at daybreak, a signal was made for sailing; but, it being very boisterous, we were obliged presently to put into a little bay, where we had excellent shelter. About 11 in the forenoon, the storm being considerably abated, we sent the barge back to Cheap's Bay, for some canvas, of which we had left a good deal there; now apprehending we might soon and often have occasion to renew or repair our sails. This we should have thought of and provided for afore [before, Ed.], instead of leaving the necessary materials for that purpose behind us; but, to say the truth, it was easy to forget one thing, though of importance, where we had so many to consider. Nine of our People went with the barge on this errand, of whom the Honourable John Byron desired to be one. Whether they had any such design at going off, I can't say, for not the least hint that way transpired from any one of them, but certain it is, that none of these persons ever joined us any more, but rejoined themselves to, and stayed with the Captain. What their motives were to this step I never was informed; but have always surmised it was owing to the almost intolerable inconveniences we every one of us endured on board; to which they thought any other condition of life preferable. After waiting five or six days for them in vain, and wondering what was become of them, Mr. Bulkeley, with seven or eight of the Men, went overland, to the place where he expected to


find the barge, and them, if they were living. He took that number of Hands along with him, to bring away the canvas we needed, in case any accident had befallen those he went in quest of, or it was not their pleasure to come back anymore, as proved indeed the case. He neither met with them, or the barge, or the canvas: so he and his Company returned re infecta. [(Latin, literally) the business being unfinished, Ed.]

The conduct of these people surprised and vexed us not a little. They had all, except the Captain's Steward, approved of going Southward, and were ever as forward as any in urging it, and blaming our Commander for being otherwise disposed. What then could engage them to quit us for a different course? Nothing, as I can imagine, but the consideration afore suggested. This depriving us of the barge gave the utmost uneasiness: for having nothing to serve as a tender now but the cutter, we were in danger of being presently reduced to starve, should any accident befall her. However, there was no remedy; we were forced on the dreadful hazard; and it was through the mercy of Heaven that we escaped what there was so much reason to fear.

For several days, after this separation, we went on encountering every thing that was most terrible: the furious waves frequently threatening to overwhelm us; the rocks often menacing immediate destruction; and the prospect of that horridest tormenter, famine, continually before our eyes. All these impending evils were still enhanced, by the indolent, listless temper of some among us, who were, through fatigue and despair, become regardless of life, and could scarcely be moved to do any thing


towards even their own preservation; or, by the inquietude and turbulence of others, who were ready to mutiny, though they had hardly room to breathe, if their brutal demands were not instantly satisfied. Add to this, that being so closely pent up, the steams of our bodies and filthy, wet apparel infected the air about us to such a degree, that it was almost intolerable, and enough to cause a pestilence.

We made very little progress in our voyage for several days. Our opportunities of getting at all out to sea were but rare. We were generally in the evenings obliged to shelter in some bay or creek, where now and then the intemperateness of the weather confined us many hours beyond our inclination, and we were oftentimes delayed by the necessity of going on shore in quest of food, such as shellfish, wild fowl, and the like.

On Tuesday, the 3d of November, the cutter parted from us. This disagreeable incident was in great measure owing to the obstinacy of those on board her. She had the misfortune of splitting her square sail in the morning, on which we offered to take her in tow, but those in her refused it: they would in no respect follow direction, or conduct themselves according to our advice. Notwithstanding this obstinacy, whereby they justly forfeited any concern of ours for their safety, yet we followed them, desiring to afford them all the succour and assistance in our power, till we thereby run ourselves into the utmost peril. Indeed we gave not over till they disappeared. Our losing them after all this was extremely vexatious; partly, through an apprehension of so


many of our companions perishing, when we had undergone such pains and hazards for their preservation; and, partly, because our own condition was thereby rendered much worse, having nothing left us now to go ashore in, though the most urgent occasion required.

On Friday, the 6th instant, we got sight of the cutter again. This was an event that gave us in the Speedwell abundance of joy. But our pleasure, alas, was of very short duration; for having, when the night came on, made her fast astern of us, with only two Men in her, (one of which left her, at eleven o'clock, and came into our vessel) about two in the morning she broke loose, having one James Stewart in her, and was soon out of our sight, for ever! The poor fellow that on board cried out to us when she loosened, and we did all we could to recover the boat, and save him; but our efforts were ineffectual; so that most probably she was staved among the rocks, and he went to the bottom.

On Sunday following, the People were importunate [insistent, Ed.] for a distribution of provisions, though it was four days before the appointed time. No representation of the unhappy effect that might attend such a proceeding could prevail with them to forbear. No sooner was this unreasonable demand satisfied, (for they would be refused nothing they set on) but several of them offered another, far more surprising; and that was, to be put ashore, with the allowance only of a few necessaries that we could spare them, and which would be their share, of right, in case a partition was to be now made. When some of us inquired the cause of this


odd motion, those who started it answered, "That they were not without hopes of meeting with the cutter, in which, if that happened, they would go back Northward; or, if they were not so fortunate as to find her, they should have means for someway making a canoe, that might serve their intention; and, upon the whole, thought they could not run a greater risk, or be in a worse situation any how, than at present." We did all we could, by arguing, to divert their purpose; but they were not to be dissuaded; so, as they persisted, we hauled closed on shore, and landed them. They were eleven who thus left us. We furnished them with all they could in conscience ask; and they, on their part, signed an instrument that we drew up, certifying the Lords of the Admiralty, "That their parting from us and staying behind was absolutely their own choice, and that we had done the most which could be fairly required in their behalf."

Indeed, the conduct of these folks, all things considered, was not so unaccountable as it seemed to us at first sight. Our condition, in the Speedwell, was the miserablest imaginable, as I have already described; we could scarcely breathe for want of space, and were perishing through scarcity of food: so that, if their attempts failed, they would hardly be accommodated worse in any situation than that wherein they left us; whereas, if they succeeded any how in their hopes, they had a probability of mending their circumstances; and who, that may be better, and cannot be worse, is blameable, for taking a course leading to such an issue.


Four days after this separation the Gunner and a few others went ashore, in hope of getting some provisions. Here they met two of the native savages, whose sole attendant was a mangy dog. You know it is a proverb, that Hunger will break through stone walls; no wonder then if it prevailed on Mr. Bulkeley and his Comrades to violate a commandment, as it did on this occasion; for they could not refrain from coveting somewhat of these poor Indians'; and what think you that was, but the nasty, scabby animal I have now mentioned, Their faithful dog, that bore them company.

In short, their eyes and their appetites were so moved with this sweet creature, that they forced it, in a manner, from the owners; who did not quit their dear domestic without great reluctance, notwithstanding one of the Sailors presented one of them with a pair of trousers in exchange of it. No sooner had our folks gotten it into their hands, than it was slain, dressed [prepared, Ed.], and sacrificed to Comus, the god of good cheer; it was greedily devoured, as a delicious feast; and it might well be relished, when we accompanied with a full measure of the very best sauce, — as hunger is accounted.

But I must give these adventurers due praise. They were not satisfied with regaling themselves only in this little expedition; for they brought off the shore with them abundance of fine mussels, which, at their return on board, were distributed among us, to our great relief and pleasure.

Next morning, being Friday the 13th of November, most of us went ashore, a-fishing. One of us killed a large seal, which we thought


excellent food: though in a time of less necessity it would have been too coarse for our stomachs.

Such hits as these were but rare, and very far from affording supplies sufficiently extensive. They were neither frequent enough, nor, when they happened, did they answer, in any competent measure, the cravings of such a number. All we could any how get was too little to prevent several of us being famished. Hunger had by degrees got such an ascendance [domination, Ed.], as obliged many to part with every thing they had, for the appeasing it. On Sunday, the 15th, a sort of traffic, in this way, was carried on among us; those who were in greatest distress bartering their silver buckles, or any thing that would pass, for flour. This precious commodity was rated, early in the day, at twelve shillings the pound only, but soon rose to a guinea. In the afternoon of the next day, George Bateman, a youth of sixteen years old, died, a mere skeleton, purely for want of victuals. Two days after, Thomas Caple, son of the late Lieutenant Caple, aged but twelve years, underwent the same miserable fate. The guardian of this poor child was aboard, who had of its money above twenty guineas, besides a watch and a silver cup. The poor, hapless creature, with prayers and tears, beseeched him to deliver up this small inheritance, that he might purchase somewhat to save his life; but the vile savage told him, that he must keep what he had of his in hand, to buy clothes and other pretty things for him at Brazil. Alas! replied the dying victim, (for he was in truth


sacrificed to the cruelty and avarice of this vulture) "I shall never see Brazil; I am even now starving, starved almost to death; therefore, for Christ's sake, have compassion on me, and give me only the silver cup, to procure me a little food, that I may be relieved from my insufferable torture; a morsel of victuals is of more worth to me than all the apparel in the world." But his tears and solicitations to that obdurate man were in vain: Heaven only heard, and succoured him by putting a period to his breath.

Those who have never witnessed these dismal scenes, can hardly imagine, how any should be so inhuman, as to see their fellow-creatures languishing in the most doleful manner, and administer them no relief. But hunger is destitute of all compassion. Each man's calamity is so great as absorbs all his pity and concern, which cannot but centre in himself. Such was our miserable case at that time, when every one of us was on the verge of this wretched orphan's condition, and so could not part with a morsel to prolong his life, without the utmost danger of finishing our own. Nay, we may even believe the fellow, who was possessed of his effects, withheld them merely through a principle of self-preservation, and as a resource for his own extreme necessities.

Beside the aforementioned, there perished by famine, within the compass of a few days after the former, Peter Delroy, our Barber, Thomas Thorpe, Thomas Woodhead, John Turner, Marines, Mr. Thomas Harvey, the Purser, and Sergeant Ringall.


It was remarkable of these people, that, some hours before they expired, they became delirious; in this state they would joke, laugh immoderately, and play ridiculous pranks, as if they were really merry; in which temper they died. Those of us that survived, had almost ground [grounds, Ed.] to envy the deceased, who were thereby freed from the horrid circumstances under which we groaned: tortured with hunger and thirst; catching at the most nauseous things that could any way appease the rage of these cruel appetites; and an abhorrence even to ourselves, by reason of stench and vermin. Was not death, in such a case, a release or deliverance!

Had we, in this woeful state, but known our situation, and been acquainted with our course, it might have been some little alleviation of our misery; but we were in these respects under great uncertainty; we could neither tell where we were, or how we should steer. We aimed at the Straits of Magellan, and on the 10th of November, 1741, we were really at the mouth of them; as Bulkeley the Gunner rightly concluded, from the observations he made that morning of the bearings of the coast and islands then in view, (which last he conjectured to be the islands of direction Sir John Narborough has described) as well as by the latitude he had taken the preceding day. However, the opinion of the majority being against him, we were so unhappy as to deviate from the right path, and wander several days out of the way; till, at length, the Lieutenant, and the rest who had differed from him, being fully satisfied, after repeated and vain efforts, that they were


in the wrong, we were forced to return many leagues back, through the same difficulties and hazards we had passed afore, only to recover the road we should have taken, if we had wisely followed the Gunner's counsel.

Never did I behold such a sea as runs here. We expected each mountainous wave would swallow us. The shore is covered with rocks and little islands, and consequently with dangerous breakers. The boldest of our Crew were dismayed; for Death, as it were, surrounded us every moment. Our preservation could be owing to nothing but a special Providence. This was obvious to the most inconsiderate [thoughtless, Ed.], and confessed by the most impious among us, at that time. One incident in our favour had even the appearance of a miracle. It happened one day in the afternoon, that being in a hurricane, environed with rocks, but a few yards distant from us any way, and enveloped with so gross an atmosphere that we could hardly see beyond the boat, we entreated Heaven for light, as the only means to prevent our destruction; our supplication was heard, in a moment the blessing was poured on us, the weather brightened, and we discovered the paths of safety.

It was on the 10th of November, as I have before said, that we first arrived at the opening of the Straits of Magellan. However, those who had the chief sway on board, not knowing or believing this, but fancying they were still far off us, we sailed up them several days, preposterously beating about to find an entrance, through which we had already passed. This was like, not seeing the wood for trees. On the 14th we came in sight of the South shore. Its


first appearance was like that of a large island, stretching Westward, with two hummocks resembling sugar-loaves at the further end; South of which a rocky point extends into the sea. This point our Gunner affirmed to be Cape Pillar, and declared he was thereby fully assured of our being in the Straits. Next day, with little wind, we steered further up them; and, about noon, running along coast, we made two openings. Our Officers were in doubt, hereupon, which to make choice of as the right passage; for they took it for granted one of these must be it. One lay E.S.E., the other S.E. by S. Bulkeley was required to give his judgment, and he determined for the first. The rest differed from him, alleging Sir John Narborough's authority for their opinion. Bulkeley grounded his on the very same foundation; alleging, that Sir John expressly says, E.S.E. is the direct course from Cape Pillar. His advice on this prevailed, and was followed a while, that is, for some hours in the morning of the 16th, till we had sailed a few miles according to it; but then, on not seeing a certain landmark that we expected, or any outlet, and the wind blowing hard, the patience of our People was exhausted, they were deaf to all the Gunner could say for encouraging them to proceed, and would go no further. Whereas, a little perseverance, and another hour's sailing, would have given us a pleasing conviction, of our being in the place where we so earnestly wished to be. They were for immediately going back; but the wind blowing strongly against us, we were forced to put into a cove on the North shore, where we had


tolerable anchoring, but where the land afforded only a barren rocky prospect, and nothing like provision or refreshment. Next day we attempted to remove, and it being pretty calm we rowed out; but an adverse breeze springing up, when we had made but a mile, or so, we were obliged to anchor again.

We had the same sort of exercise and disappointments as these for several following days, On Tuesday the 24th, our circumstances seemed to put on a better aspect, and we got under sail; but before evening our hopes were damped, and we found ourselves again in a very perplexed situation. We had run into a narrow gut [passage, Ed.], hardly a furlong over. This put us to our wits' end. The wind just then veered, which obstructed our retreat; and the tide, which, if strong, might have helped us in this case, was so far spent that we could make no advantage of it; so we put into a small cove and cast anchor. We stayed here only two hours; for it then growing calm, we cast loose, being desirous to waste no time, or spare any pains, but apply our utmost endeavours to try if we could find any opening. All our labours that way were ineffectual. This surprised us greatly. The Lieutenant fancied we were got into a lagoon, to the Northward of the Straits, and reasoned very wisely, in his own conceit, to prove it could be no otherwise; but the Gunner treated this opinion, according to its desert, as a mere chimera, and still insisted on our being no where but in the very Straits of Magellan, and even near a hundred miles up them.


It is no wonder we were thus sadly embarrassed. Beside the Gunner and Carpenter there was not an Officer on board that would come on deck to make any observations, or would stay there longer than his watch absolutely required. If others had done their duty as became them in such a conjuncture, and been as careful in keeping a reckoning, as, to their great commendation, it must be owned these two were, we had not been exposed to so many vexations as we daily suffered, but should probably have passed through the Straits ere this, and been far advanced beyond them to the Northward.

All, except Bulkeley and two or three more, being now, unfortunately, agreed that we were quite out of our road, and should never reach it in this way; it was resolved, with united heart and voice, to retreat as expeditiously as possible, in order to rectify the mistakes we had (supposedly) committed. Accordingly, from the 25th of November to the 5th of December, 1741, eleven days, we were employed in gradually returning; till, on the morning of the day last mentioned, about four of the clock, Mr. Bulkeley once more got sight of Cape Pillar, bearing W. by N. at the distance of eight leagues. On this fresh discovery, (which gave him a double pleasure, both as it served to ascertain our situation and direct our course, and as it afforded him a subject of triumph over all the Company) he called on the Lieutenant, and showing it to him, asked, Whether he still doubted of that being the Cape? The gentleman, being now convinced, acknowledged his error, and was heartily ashamed and vexed in


reflecting on the many dangers we had encountered, and the disgrace arising to himself, by his ignorance and pertinacity. Had he believed the Gunner, when he formerly pointed out to him this landmark, or had our patience held out but long enough to have carried us a few miles farther, on Monday the 16th of November aforementioned, we had [we would have, Ed.] escaped numerous troubles, and not have spent a woeful fortnight in coming back, only to have a second view of Cape Pillar, and to repent of our folly. However, better late than never. A full conviction (as we now had) of our actually being in the Straits of Magellan, was to all of us like wine to those of a heavy heart, it made us, comparatively speaking, to forget our sorrows, as Solomon expresses it, and to remember our miseries no more [(Biblical reference) Proverbs 31:6-7, Ed.]. In short, it inspired us with that life and joy to which we had been utterly strangers for several months before — a prelude of that delight which the prospect of our native coast was afterwards to give us.

On Sunday, December 6, about seven in the morning, being abreast of Cape Quad, we discerned a smoke on the opposite shore. Soon after there appeared some Indians, on a point of land at the entrance of a little bay, hollowing [calling out, Ed.] Bona! Bona! by which, as we guessed, they intended to express a friendship. They continued making these amicable signs to us for some time. On this encouragement several of us landed, and went up to them, on which they seemed to be much pleased, and readily entered into a traffic [trade, Ed.] with us. We bartered with them for a couple of dogs, three or four brant


geese, and some dried seal: all delicate refreshments at that season, especially the dogs, which relished then as well to our palates, as the best mutton we had ever eaten in England; nay, I question if any food we ever tasted at home had so high a gout [(from French) taste, Ed.], as these four-legged animals, in that day of scarcity; so true is it, as I observed before, that hunger is the best sauce.

The Indians bordering on these Straits, if we may judge of them by the specimen we saw, are of moderate stature, and agreeably enough shaped; their colour a tawny olive; their hair of a middling length, very black; their visage round; their eyes and nose small; their teeth in all respects as beautiful as can be; they are very active, and amazingly swift; their head attire is adorned with white plumes, which look prettily; their vestments are made of the skins of seals and guanacos. Those we spied, or traded with, had women among them; but, as soon as we approached, the females fled into the woods, so that we had a very transient and imperfect view of them; however, from such a behaviour we may infer, their reservedness and virtue are not inferior to those of our most delicate European ladies.

When a disease comes to be known, say the physicians, it is half cured. And, now, by a second view of Cape Pillar, being convinced of our past mistakes, we found no great difficulty in retrieving [making amends for, Ed.] them. We were continually after this making some real and known advance in our intended course; our diligence was naturally attended with pleasure, when we knew it was rightly applied, instead of fearing, as before, that it was driving us but so


much the faster out of our way. I shall not particularize each day's progress or occurrences; that would be rather tedious than entertaining; I will specify those incidents only that are, more or less, of the latter kind.

On Wednesday, the 9th of December, having got abreast of the Sweepstakes Foreland, we steered S. S. [sic, Ed.] about twenty miles, in search of water; when, towards noon, we came in sight of a delicious country, along the shore of which, for several leagues, we beheld the guanacos feeding, in distinct herds of half a score or more together. This creature is about the size of our largest deer, and hoofed as those are, with long and slender legs; its head resembles that of a sheep; its neck is of a graceful length; it tail bushy and of a florid colour; it is covered with wool, that on the back red, that on the sides and belly white; it is excessively swift, quicksighted [sharp-sighted, Ed.], and timorous; it flies at the approach of strangers, and is not easily to be shot or taken. I suppose its flesh is the mutton of the country.

On the 11th, about twelve at night, we doubled Cape Virgin Mary. We must now take leave of the Straits of Magellan, in which we spent no less than thirty days, reckoning from that whereon we first discovered Cape Pillar. On the 16th, at noon, we came abreast of Penguin Island, about eight furlongs from the shore. It was almost covered with seals and penguins, from which last, in all probability, it was named. Mr. Bulkeley, who is a great animadverter [observer, Ed.], and is as nice and earnest in his observations as if he were collecting materials for a natural history of the globe,


desired us to take notice, how exactly the birds corresponded with Sir John Narborough's description of them, in his voyage; (which, by the way, was our Gunner's rule and oracle in respect of these parts of the world) and, in truth, they differed not, so far as I could perceive, from that excellent navigator's account. According to him, "These fowls live entirely on fish, which they dive for, and catch very nimbly. They are about the size of a brant goose. They can't properly be said to have wings, but a sort of fins in place of them. Their bodies are covered with feathers of a very particular downy kind, dark grey on the back and head, but milk white about the neck and belly. They are legged like a goose; full-necked, headed and beaked like a crow, only the point of the bill turns down a little. Though they grip very hard when they bite, they are so extraordinarily tame, that one may drive them in herds anywhere, and knock them on the head, without danger of being hurt by them."

There are prodigious numbers of these animals in other and very distant parts of the world, on the shores and islands, differing somewhat from one another, in their properties, according to the climates they are bred and live in. They are various in size, and other particularities of form, and their flesh is as differently relished. They all live entirely on fish; and some sorts of them taste strongly of that food, while others have nothing of it, but savour as agreeably as most land fowl. I scarce know what to reckon them, birds, or fish; I think they participate of both kinds.


I remember Sebald de Weert [Dutch sea-captain who visited Patagonian waters in 1598-99, Ed.] speaks of those he caught here, in this manner, "The old ones weigh from twelve to sixteen pounds, and the young ones from eight to twelve; they are black upon the back, and white under the belly; some have about their neck a white ring, so that they are almost half-white, half-black; their skin is much like that of a sea-dog [(probably) a seal, Ed.], and as thick as the skin of a wild boar; their bill is as long as the bill of a raven, but not so crooked; their neck is short and thick, and the body as long as a goose's but not so big. Instead of wings, they have two fins hanging down, and covered with feathers, with which they swim with great strength; they seldom come ashore but [except, Ed.] when they breed, and then they nestle three or four together in a hole; they have black feet like those of a swan, but not so broad; they walk upright, with their fins hanging down like a man's arm, so that, afar off, they look like pygmies; they make their holes in the downs as deep as rabbit burrows, and the ground all about is so full of them, that you can hardly walk along without falling into those holes up to the knees." Dampier says, The Penguins are to be seen all over the South Sea, on the coast of Newfoundland, and on the Cape of Good Hope.

From abreast of Penguin Island we steered for Port Desire [modern Puerto Deseado, Ed.] This is distinguishable by a high pyramidal rock, about a mile in the land, which, as you enter the harbour, has the appearance of a square steeple, and as if it had been erected on purpose for a landmark. We anchored at Seal Island a league up. Here, in a


very short time, we killed more seal than we could carry off. Our People dressed a great quantity, and eat of it so greedily, as to feel very ill effects; for, whether it proceeded only from over great and hasty repletion, or from any unwholesome quality in the food itself, many of them were presently, after feeding thereon, seized violently with feverish symptoms, from which they did not soon or easily recover.

But they were not only bodily disorders that troubled us in this place; for those malignant humours, by which we had suffered more than from shipwreck, or any external mishaps, but which had lain pretty quiet for a while, so as one might have hoped they were altogether expelled or suppressed, began here to rage afresh, and break out with their usual virulence. Nothing would serve our lawless Crew but an instant distribution of flour. We had no more on board than a single cask, nor any thing that could tolerably supply the future want of it in the long run we had yet to the Brazils. For though we had now seal and fowl enough to suffice us, we could not depend on the continuance of these advantages; and if we could, yet, even in that case, a small matter of the bread kind, to mingle with them sometimes, was very desirable. However, notwithstanding these considerations were pathetically urged, and these creatures' interest [(that is) what would be in their best interest, Ed.] was so manifestly on the side of parsimony, nothing could prevail on them to withhold their demand. They would be served, or, rather, dis-served, in spite of all reason and remonstrance. There was, moreover, a desperate faction among them, about proportioning the allowance: some insisting, that the Marine Offices should have


but half as much as those of the ship, and, in short, that those who worked the vessel should have as much again as those that did not. Accordingly the movers of this, who happened to be the stronger party, selected, or, if you please, reprobated [condemned, Ed.] twenty, whom they stinted [restricted, Ed.] to half a pound of flour each, at the same time that they challenged the double of that for themselves. The sufferers were highly incensed at this treatment, which they esteemed as a most insolent partiality [unfairness, Ed.]; exclaiming, that they were to be starved, to gratify the luxury of their villainous comrades. You, in the plenty of all things, will perhaps smile at the mention of such a luxury as this; but, on reflection, even the distant imagination, of such a condition as it must be, wherein that was so termed, which you would think a very famine, cannot fail of inspiring a melancholy idea.

On Saturday the 26th, very early in the morning, we sailed from Port Desire, steering out E. N. E. At Six Penguin Island bore S. by E. distant eighteen miles, and Cape Blanco N. W. by N. twelve. Mr. Bulkeley, who was really one of the best skilled and most useful persons among us, took our departure from the latter, which, if his observation be right, lies in the longitude 71.00 W. from London.

On the 28th the weather was in all respects favourable: much better than the temper of our brutal Company, that could not be at quiet. To prevent a mutiny, a final partition was this day made of the remaining flour, amounting to three pound and a half each Man. This was soon devoured; so that we had


nothing henceforth to subsist on, but the seal we brought from Port Desire; and that, for want of curing, was a most nauseous diet, which extreme hunger only prevailed with us to feed on. And yet, truly, it was suitable enough, both to the disposition and state of those who were forced to eat it; for as, in respect of temper, they were vile enough to deserve even worse, so were their external circumstances as filthy and loathsome as the putrefied fish; nay, of the two, I think we stunk the most, beside being overspread with vermin.

Sunday, the 10th of January, 1741-2 [January 10, 1742, according to the Gregorian calendar, Ed.], at Noon the Gunner, after some proper operations for such discovery, apprehended we were within thirteen leagues of the land, and therefore advised us to haul in N. W. that we might reach it before night. At this distance from the shore we saw a vast many butterflies and horsestingers [horseflies, Ed.]. I have often considered with admiration the prodigious strength there must be in the muscles moving the wings of some birds and insects, compared with the bulk and weight of their respective bodies, by which they are enabled for such long flights as several of them are known to make, without any apparent means of resting. It is hardly credible at what a great way from any coast we sometimes meet them. About four in the afternoon we had a joyful sight of land; an object we had not seen in a fortnight. We ran in with it, and in less than five hours anchored a league from the shore, in eight fathom water, and a fine sandy bottom.

Next morning early we weighed [hoisted the anchor, Ed.],sailing N. E. by E. within a mile of the shore,


along a delightful country, abounding with horses and great dogs, of which we could perceive all the way surprising numbers. At night we anchored in three fathom and half, fine sand, with a great swell. We called the place Shoal Water Bay.

But these circumstances, though exceedingly pleasant in their own nature, did rather tantalize than satisfy us. They were neither meat nor drink, and we were in the utmost penury of both. We had nothing at all on board to eat, and but a single cask of water, which last was barely sufficient for the present allaying our parching thirst. A supply of both must be had, or there was no going from hence without inevitably perishing by famine; and yet neither was to be procured without much difficulty and danger. There ran here a great and ugly surf, that rendered our approaches to the shore very hazardous. However, to the shore we must go, or starve. If we ran the risk of dying, it was to avoid the bitterest death. Necessity and distress produce invention; and extreme hunger and thirst, which were our solicitors [motivators, Ed.] at this time, will prompt one to the most desperate undertakings. We put in the boat then as nigh as we durst [dared, Ed.] venture, and so near, that from thence we hoped the skill and courage of some of us might avail to convey them through the breakers to land, and back again to the boat with provision. But now it was not every man that had boldness enough to engage in this perilous undertaking; so that, at first, there was rather a general backwardness. Lieutenant Eu____r [Ewers, Ed.] and two other inferior Officers seeing this,


determined to excite an emulation in the Crew, and bravely set an example, by first plunging into the briny element. These three were instantly followed by eleven of the stoutest fellows among us, who jumped overboard after them, with as bold a resolution as that of Curtius [said to have sacrificed his life to save the city of Rome from impending peril, Ed.] when he leaped into the flaming chasm. Thirteen of these adventurers, to our unspeakable joy, reached the terra firma; and one of them, a Marine, had the misfortune to be drowned in the attempt.

But these people getting ashore would have signified little, unless we had there furnished them with the means of doing themselves and us the intended service. Therefore, in order to this, we took four of our quarter casks, and fastening on the sides of each four firelocks, accompanied with a sufficient quantity of ammunition, we cast them overboard, and they happily drove where we designed [intended, Ed.] them. Our good caterers easily shot a sufficiency of seal, which they cut up, and cooked most delicately to bring on board. The fire they dressed [prepared the food, Ed.] by was made of the dung of horses, (with which species, as well as that of dogs, the coast swarmed) quickened by the timber of one of the casks, which, as they found it leaked, and so could be of no use for water, they broke up, and turned to good account in that manner.

You will now think all difficulties removed, and be ready to congratulate us on being supplied with abundance of food, and a competency [sufficiency, Ed.] of water; but though we could see enough of both provided and made ready, for us, on shore, and our Comrades there a-feasting, yet we on board were in no better a condition


than that of Tantalus [Greek mythical character who was punished by the Gods by standing in sight of fruit but unable to reach it, Ed.], starving, in the view and within the reach of plenty. You will ask, how so, what hindered us from enjoying it? What frustrated our hopes, and reduced us to a wretched situation? I answer, a cruel and perverse wind, that would neither suffer us to go to land, nor permit any person or thing to come to us from thence. And this continued, till intolerable extremity constrained us to devour some part of a stinking seal skin, that had served for a tarpaulin, and which had no further dressing than singeing off the hair: there's never a dog would have touched it, notwithstanding the proverb, that hungry curs eat dirty puddings. But at length Providence concerned itself in our favour; for, on Wednesday the 13th, the weather altered greatly for the better, and there was a fine calm. This afforded us a comfortable opportunity, which we improved to good purpose: for, thrusting the boat in, as we could now very near, and then lashing the oars to the hatches, we made a conveniency [handy device, Ed.] for hauling up those things which our friends had made ready for us. In the morning of this day they had shot a horse and a dog. The flesh of these animals was exceedingly welcome, as it made a variety of food, and rendered our diet wholesomer, or at least more grateful [pleasing, Ed.], than it might have proved, if we had been forced to live on the seal only. In the afternoon, Lieutenant E____rs [Ewers, Ed.], the Boatswain, and the Carpenter came on board, as in our present situation they could easily do, and along with them four of the Men, laden with these dainties I have been speaking of. It was happy for them,


as well as for us, that they got into the vessel as they did; for they had no sooner embarked than a sea breeze sprung up, and blowed [blew, Ed.] so hard, that we were forced to weigh; leaving part of our water and the rest of the People on land. We anchored, however, as soon as we could, and that was about a league off the shore, where we made a division of what was brought on board, among the Company. We could from hence see those poor fellows we left behind us, not without extreme regret, as we had no possible means of getting them off. Towards night the storm was so violent, that our rudder head was broken off, and we were every moment under apprehension of the vessel's parting. There was a necessity of our putting to sea, without any hopes of recovering our comrades. This grieved us exceedingly, but there was no helping it. Our thoughts therefore turned on sending them all the relief in our power. For this end we floated off, in a scuttled puncheon [large cask, Ed.], some clothes, muskets, ammunition, candles, and other necessaries, and therewith a letter to the Lords of the Admiralty, setting forth this transaction of their going ashore, with the reason of our leaving them there, as I have here described it; and which we desired them to present their Lordships, for our justification, in case they arrived in England, as we hoped they would find an opportunity of doing, and perhaps sooner than we. The preamble to this epistolary memorial [letter of record, Ed.] run thus, "In Fresh Water Bay, dated on board the Speedwell schooner, on the coast of South America, in the latitude of 37:25: S., longitude from the meridian of London 65:00: W., this 14th day of January, 1741-42.


"These are to certify the Right Honourable the Lords Commissioners for executing the Office of Lord High Admiral of Great Britain, that we, etc."

Thus we left our brethren to Providence and the wide world. To our great comfort, we saw them receive the cask, open it, and take out and read the abovesaid letter; after which they fell on their knees, (as thanking God and us for the relief we had sent them) with all the signals they could make of wishing us well.

Immediately after this we got under sail, but made little way, the four following days. On Monday, the 18th, examining our stock of water, we found we had not on board twenty gallons, for thirty three Persons. This obliged us to come to an allowance, at a pint a Man per day; and, at this rate, our whole stock was exhausted in forty eight hours. Just as we had seen it all out, we happily made the land. The moment we came to an anchor, several swam ashore to get water. They soon found that which was very good, and filled a cask or two presently to bring on board. We could see this from the vessel; and you may judge how pleasing a sight it was to us, whose thirst was now becoming intolerable. But we had like [were likely, Ed.] to have been deprived of the fruit of their friendly industry, and they of their lives, by the hasty indulgence of their own raging appetites: for being almost choked before they went ashore, and now got to the pure fountainhead, they filled their bellies thereat as full as the casks. In short, they made so immoderately free with the good liquor, that, though they could not intoxicate, they had like


to have burst themselves by drinking, so as to become hardly capable of returning to the boat; nay, one was absolutely unable to reach it, and unfortunately perished, endeavouring to swim back.

On Wednesday the 20th the Gunner and Carpenter went ashore. They met some of the inhabitants, well mounted, on horseback. Bulkeley speaking the Portuguese was able to converse with them. They told him the English and Spaniards were still at war; they gave an account of some ships of ours a-cruising on that coast, and particularly of one of seventy guns, which, but a few weeks before, was lost, by driving ashore, when the whole Crew was drowned. They said they lived at Mount de Vidia [modern Montevideo, Ed.], a town about twenty leagues distant, that they were Castilians, and only came down there a-fishing, that being their occupation, and that Buenos Ayres [modern Buenos Aires, Ed.] was the market for what they caught. Bulkeley asked if the country did not belong to the King of Portugal? They answered yes; but that, however, there were a great many Spanish settlements on this side of it, to one of which they belonged. When these folks come a-fishing, it is in large bodies [groups, Ed.], and they bring provision and all necessaries along with them on beasts of burden. Those with whom Bulkeley here talked were part of a caravan of that sort, about a mile off, to which they kindly invited him and the Carpenter. These gentlemen made no scruple of getting behind two of the Spaniards and riding to the rendezvous; where they were hospitably entertained with what is called jerk beef, very good, roasted and boiled, beside delicate white bread.


As they found themselves exceedingly refreshed by this repast, and remembering what a condition we were in, they resolved on buying, if possible, some of the same comfortable stuff as they had eaten, to bring with them on board. There was nothing however the Spaniards could be prevailed on to part with but bread; and on this they set a a most exorbitant price. They pretended to have very little of it, and that, if they parted with any, they ran a hazard of wanting themselves; and so, truly, demanded between four and five pounds sterling, for no more than equalled (in weight) five or six of our half pack loaves in England. This was a cruel extortion, and went sadly against Bulkeley and the others' stomachs. But necessity bears down all reluctance: they were themselves so enfeebled for want of food, and were so thoroughly convinced how welcome any supply would be to us in the vessel, that they complied with the demand, and brought away for their money about a quarter of a hundred of wheaten manchets [small loaf of bread, Ed.]. To soften this hard bargain a little, a Spanish priest, confessor to this gang, told the purchasers, that all his flock would be hanged, if it were discovered they had supplied us with a morsel of provision. At the same time however this padre was so kind as to offer, in case he had a gun and shot, to go kill them as much wild fowl as would serve our whole Company. On this the Carpenter sent to the Boat for his fowling piece and ammunition, which he delivered to the father. But we did not enjoy the effect of his promise; Mr. Cummins lost his artillery, and we never had the game: for the ecclesiastic not coming back by the time he appointed, and our People having observed one


of the company ride off, son after the former went out (as he pretended) a-fowling; they fancied there was some design going forward to betray (and perhaps destroy) us all; whereupon they made down to the vessel, as expeditiously as they could, without discovering [displaying, Ed.] their apprehension, got in the water, and ordered everything ready for putting off, in case of any hostile appearance. This was on the 20th of January, 1741-2.

Early on the morning of the 21st we got under sail. In the afternoon of the 24th, being Sunday, we discovered three islands. One of these is if a very singular figure. Mr. Bulkeley at first cried out it must surely be a church with a high steeple in the sea; and indeed the shape and colour (which last is white) gave some room for such an imagination. Soon after, we came in sight of three more islands. Between these and the former we steered till we came in view of the mainland. Towards nine in the evening we cast anchor, in about thirteen fathom water and a clean ground. As soon as we had settled, we proceeded to the funeral of Mr. Thomas Clark, the Master, and his son, who died within a few hours of one another, and whom we now committed with as much decency as we could to the sea.

We were again in extreme want of victuals. We had seen seal in abundance on the islands we passed yesterday, and heartily wished for some of it at this time. The wind now happened to be in our teeth [(that is) a head wind, Ed.], having chopped [changed direction, Ed.] upon us just after we cast anchor, and would not permit us to proceed forward; whereupon, after a little consideration, we resolved to turn this obstruction (as we should


otherwise have thought it) into advantage, and make use of it to carry us back to these islands, where we hoped to supply our craving appetites. Accordingly, next morning, we weighed with that design. But our expectation, when we got thither, was quite frustrated; for we found the islands so surrounded with rocks and breakers, that there was no putting ashore, or coming within reach of what we needed. Hereupon, night overtaking us, we came to an anchor, on a like ground and in the same depth of water as we had the preceding evening.

Next morning, the 26th, having good weather, we sailed, and soon got clear of the islands. Our disappointment, in respect of the provision we hoped for there, was a grievous vexation; but it would have been a terrible one indeed, had there not been one alleviating circumstance, that in some degree kept up our spirits, as a sort of cordial; and this was, that, with a brisk gale in our favour, we were not many leagues off the Rio Grand [modern-day Rio Grande do Sul, Ed.], which was our desired port.

On Thursday, the 28th, about seven in the morning, through the mercy of God, we discovered the mouth of the River Grand. The opening of this spacious stream appeared to our weary, hungry, and thirsty souls as the very gate of Heaven. There is a dangerous bar at the entrance, and several shoals to be carefully passed over, or avoided, in going up it. Mr. Bulkeley undertook to carry us in, and to pilot us to the town. This he did very judiciously and safely in a few hours. We dropped anchor abreast of it, on the East shore, in less than two fathom water. Never did any creatures come there with more joyful hearts, or more miserable, meagre countenances.


There immediately came a boat alongside of us, out of which we were boarded by two men. These were not custom-house spies, or searchers, but of the military order. They were vested with authority to carry some of us ashore, that we might certify the Governor who we were, whence we came, our business, and the like. We were become such a frightful Crew of starvelings that they could not but look on us with a mixture of horror and compassion. Our Gunner, Carpenter, Lieutenant, and Captain Pemberton went with them. As soon as these landed, they were received with all the tokens of friendship imaginable, by every rank, from the Commander of the garrison to the lowest of the vulgar. They were conducted to the best house in the place, which was the Surgeon's, and there entertained with much affection and generosity. In the afternoon, the Governor, who had been abroad, came to town. His behaviour was very human and courteous; but, however, he was equally strict in examining the Lieutenant, and then Mr. Bulkeley, about a number of circumstances. He inquired of the latter (who had been represented to him as our Pilot) if there was any chart of the coast on board our vessel; and being answered in the negative, he was greatly surprised at our venturing on it without one; but professed he was mightily pleased that we had so happily succeeded. He wondered at our hitting the bar as exactly as if we had frequented the port; and did not in the beginning forebear insinuating, that we could hardly be such absolute strangers to the place as we pretended. But when Mr. Bulkeley had set before him the means whereby he was enabled, with the


blessing of God, to effect all this, and had briefly related our case, which the other three confirmed, he not only was satisfied of our being no impostors, and considered us as real objects of pity, but he embraced those four as friends, rejoicing, as I have already hinted, in the miraculous preservation and deliverance, as he deemed it, of us all. He assured the Lieutenant and the rest, that nothing should wanting which the country afforded for our relief and refreshment. He took those gentlemen to his own habitation; and though a quantity of beef and brown bread had been sent on board to us, immediately after their going ashore, before he came to town, yet he now ordered us a further supply; and gave directions, that both Officers and People should be plenteously furnished with all conveniences, and that the sick should be carried to the hospital, and taken care of. He was pleased also to give these Persons some intelligence that was exceedingly grateful to every one of us; and this was of the Severn and Pearl, two of our unfortunate squadron, who had undergone many grievous disasters, though not quite so ruinous as those we had suffered. These ships were now, as he said, at Rio Janeiro, in a distressed condition, waiting for an opportunity of returning to England, whither they had sent for some Hands to work them home, the Crews that came out with them being so diminished by death, that there were not Men enough by far left to navigate them. They had parted from the rest of the squadron off Cape Noir and put back, as we now first understood, to the Brazils. The former was a new vessel; and that circumstance was thought to


contribute to its unhealthiness: before her departure from St. Catherine's she had thrown more of her People overboard [(that is) buried at sea, Ed.] than any other ship in company; so that the Commodore was forced to recruit her there with a good many fresh Hands; and after that, so many on board her died, that there was a necessity of refurnishing her a second time, at sea; notwithstanding all which, she was reduced to that wretched state I have mentioned, and had hardly any Men left in her. And though the Pearl was somewhat less sickly than the Severn, yet the mortality on board was so destructive, that she was well nigh depopulated. — But we'll return to our own affairs.

After the Governor had thus caressed [embraced, Ed.] and treated [spoken with, Ed.] our principal Officers, as I have said, and provided in the friendliest manner for the immediate support of us all, he desired our Speedwell might be brought as close to the shore as could be. This was presently done; and all the inhabitants of the place, men, women, and children, flocked in droves to see this little ark, in which such a disproportionate number of souls had been so wonderfully saved from the devouring waters. As soon as she was moored, the Governor, the Commander of the garrison, and the Commissary honoured us with a visit. When they had surveyed the vessel, and were informed how many first embarked therein, at our setting out, they were utterly amazed, it almost surpassing, as they said, all belief. They could not frame any idea of the manner in which she was steered; they were very curious to be informed what expedient [device, Ed.] we had made use of for this purpose; and indeed there did


not appear any place at the helm, where a person might sit to do this office [perform this function, Ed.] with safety. Bulkeley explained to them the manner however in which it was performed, and they applauded it as an excellent contrivance. At taking leave, the Governor renewed his professions of concern for our welfare. He said, our distress and miseries rendered us more welcome in his eye, than if we had brought the richest cargo or treasures; that nothing in his power should be omitted for our relief and consolation; that the making known our wants and desires would be a pleasure to him, that so he might miss no occasion of supplying the one, and gratifying the other; and that he would certainly take the first opportunity of a ship for sending us to Rio Janeiro, in order for our passage to England, where, for our own and our families' sake, he earnestly wished us.

There was not a heart on board that did not glow with respect and affection to this generous patron and benefactor. We regarded him as vested with the charming qualities of the good Samaritan. It grieved us that we were unable to make any adequate return of his bounty. We had no other way of testifying our acknowledgments than by our lips, which poured forth the real expressions of gratitude and the most deserved esteem. All we could do at his departure from our poor vessel, that he had honoured by his presence, and where, alas! we had not the least means of entertaining him as he merited, was to man her, and give him, with his honourable companions, three most cordial cheers.


We had now plenty of good diet, meat and drink. Our spirits revived, and we were as new men immediately. We soon grew jovial, and our People, with pleasure, compared their present state and situation, with the condition they were in but a while before, when at Shoal Water and Fresh Water Bays, where, if we obtained some little poor supply of food, it was with such difficulty and danger, that it was, at most, but just preferable to starving; whereas here we had the best of everything, brought to and even pressed upon us. The country, adjacent to the former of the abovesaid bays, our wags [jokers, Ed.], when calling their adventures and afflictions to mind, named the Land of Horses; and the facetious Mr. Bulkeley merrily observed, that, there, thirteen of His Majesty's English Sailors had put a thousand Spanish Horse to flight. The foundation of this witticism was, that when some of our People landed at Shoal Water Bay, on the 11th or 12th of January, as I have already related, the firing of their pieces [guns, Ed.] on the shore (which you may remember I said was almost covered for several leagues with horses) set a vast number of those animals a-scampering. One which they shot, as I told you, and brought on board, was branded upon the buttock with A R, and this gave us reason to suppose, that it and the rest belonged to inhabitants that were not far off, though none appeared at that time. On all the coast, so far as we could discern, there did not grow so much as a single shrub. We, on this account, wondered [were surprised, Ed.] to find any birds there, as the place afforded nothing of their usual haunt, or shelter; but there were a great many, notwithstanding


parrots in particular, whose lodging was among the rocks, and who lived chiefly, I suppose, on periwinkles and the like fish. And now I am again upon this spot [topic, Ed.], let me mention that our folks ashore there caught some armadillos. These odd-shaped creatures are cased with a covering in shape somewhat like that of a crab, only much deeper, or, rather, resembling the form of a travelling wig box. It is not, however, an entire shell, as that of the fish is, but composed of small moveable scales, in the shape of a purslane leaf, and of a pearly colour, sliding one under another, as you may have seen some suits of ancient steel armour. Being thus formed, they can roll themselves up like a hedgehog, than which they are commonly larger, or extend their bodies and walk. Their flesh is well tasted. We devoured four of them. They are pretty innocent animals.— I return to Rio Grand.

Being thus caressed [favourably received, Ed.] and countenanced [approved, Ed.] by the grandees [high-ranking persons, Ed.], Mr. Bulkeley took the liberty of requesting the Commandant to favour him and a few other Officers with a house on shore, where they might lie a-nights, because the boat was a very inconvenient lodging, especially in wet weather. There happened to be an empty one close by the Commandant's, with the use of which he readily complimented them [(that is) gave free use of, Ed.], and gave Bulkeley the key. As soon as he had received this warrant [assurance, Ed.], he took possession of the premises, and, with the Carpenter, the Cooper, and three or four more, whom he was pleased [chose, Ed.] to accommodate, removed thither, taking with them what little necessaries [essential possessions (such as food and money), Ed.] they had in the vessel. There was one very useful piece


of furniture indeed, which they were destitute of on board, and so could not transfer it to their new habitation, that was bedding; and this the house they had gotten was no better supplied with. However, as they were sheltered from the inclemencies [severe weather, Ed.] of the season, and from several inconveniences they must have been exposed to in the Speedwell, and moreover had been inured to extreme hardship in this very article [this same point, Ed.] during their voyage hither, they thought themselves very happy in their situation, notwithstanding a deficiency in this particular.

We were here but about three days before we could plainly perceive the affairs of the place were much embroiled [confused or disturbed, Ed.]. At our first coming we had not the least suspicion, but that those who appeared as Officers in the garrison were really such, acting by the King of Portugal's commission; but we soon found we had been deceived in this matter; and that most of those who had the military power then in their hands were mere usurpers, Private Men, put into office by the Soldiery, out of their own Corps, in the room [place, Ed.] of those who were legally vested with the royal authority, and whom they had violently expelled, in a sedition against their superiors that happened a little before our arrival. This insurrection was in truth owing to great hardships the garrison laboured under, viz. want of clothing, of provision, and of their pay; as to which last they were deeply in arrears. Of all these grievances they had long and loudly complained in vain; and at last despaired of seeing them redressed, unless, instead of fruitless prayers and


tears, the insignificant weapons of passive obedience, they took the more effectual and rational method, of righting themselves by force. They were highly incensed against the Governor, to whom they principally attributed their ill usage not, as they owned [admitted, Ed.], by any direct oppression, but by allowing or encouraging it in others whom he could have curbed, or neglecting to remedy it when he easily might. They resolved therefore he should fall a sacrifice to their resentment: I don't mean by destroying or hurting his person, but by turning him out of his post, and making him a prisoner. The Governor saw these ill humours [negative attitudes, Ed.] fermenting, and knew but too well how much reason he had to apprehend the consequence of their breaking out; so he took great pains to allay their heat or, if that could not be done, at least to divert their course from himself, that he might escape the mischief. For this purpose, he artfully affected, on all opportunities when he could be heard and observed by the Soldiers, to pity their condition and insinuate "That such and such of their own Body were the guilty causes of their misusage; that he knew some Officers had, to hide their own villainy, represented him as unconcerned for the garrison, nay, as making a gain of their necessities, by which false suggestions (he feared) several honest minds might be prejudiced against him; but that, if they could inspect his heart, they would see it bleed for their case, which he had done all that was in his power to mend by secret methods, not perhaps obvious to them, but nevertheless


real and (he hoped) effectual; and that he would never rest till he found them provided for to their own satisfaction." Such discourses as these, frequently repeated, and seconded by two or three faithful emissaries that he employed in the fort, had the desired effect, and produced the happy fruits that he wished for. The Soldiery, by degrees, came to think they were mistaken in their man, and that the person they hated as their enemy was, in truth their patron and surest friend; and so were at length brought to esteem and value him as their guardian and protector, and determined to turn the edge of their wrath against those whom he had cunningly pointed out as the proper objects of it. And, accordingly, when their discontents broke into outrage, those more innocent people felt the sharpest effects of it, while he was maintained in all the dignity and power of his station. Of the military officers, two only were allowed to continue in their posts: these were the Major and the Commissary, who found some means of stemming the torrent, and so were not overwhelmed. The fellows whom the mutineers had promoted to the places of those gentlemen who were ejected, put on the grand airs and gay apparel of their predecessors, so that we had no ground, at our first coming, as I have already said, to suspect their quality [social status, Ed.]; and, accordingly, we paid them all the reverence and duty becoming their several functions. Our mistake in this matter was no fault of ours, nor did any disadvantage arise to us merely from thence; but yet those commotions which gave occasion thereunto were very prejudicial to our interest; for they,


in great measure, prevented the Governor's intentions in our behalf from having the good effects he designed; because they hindered him from furnishing us with those provisions he promised, and which we should otherwise have been amply supplied with: so that, after being pampered with plenty for two or three days ensuing our arrival, we relapsed into a fresh danger of perishing here by famine.

I have observed that one of the garrison's complaints was scarcity of victuals, no manner of stores having been sent them of a long time. They were a thousand in number, and their stock of food was then so low that, at the short allowance they were already reduced to, it would subsist them hardly above a month. Our having a part, therefore, of this scanty portion allotted to us, created a murmur amongst the Soldiery, which the Governor was afraid to provoke; and for that reason, on our application to him for another supply, when we had consumed the first, which was indeed munificent enough, we were refused; but it was very civilly, and with an apology for the unhappy necessity that was the cause of this denial, and an assurance that as soon as ever it was in his power we should be served.

It was impossible for us however to be satisfied with this answer. The sharpness of our appetites irritated us against all repulse, and made us too importunate to be put off with empty promises. Mr. Bulkeley, knowing the extremity we should be driven to immediately, if not relieved, pleaded so earnestly, and represented our distress in so moving a strain [emotional tone, Ed.], not only to the Governor, but to the upstart Officers of the garrison, and the


Commissary, that he at last prevailed with them for as much bread out of the magazine [storehouse, Ed.] as would suffice us near a fortnight, at an equal quantity, for each man per day, as the Soldiers had on duty. This was an effect of his eloquence, for which we returned him a thousand blessings; and we had no less reason to acknowledge the generosity and compassion of those he solicited, in that instance, who ran the risk of wanting for themselves, to save us from that melancholy condition.

The difficulty we found in procuring this little supply made us the more eager to be dispatched from hence. For we considered it might be some weeks before a vessel arrived with provision; in which case, if we continued here, we must inevitably be starved. For we could not hope for a morsel of bread more from the stores; and the inhabitants of the town would likewise be so hardly pinched that their charity, beginning at home, as the proverb says, would scarcely reach us. On this score, as well as through the natural desire we had to revisit our dear country, we became very impatient to be sent away. I may add, likewise, that we had most of us a strong and very laudable inclination to get, as soon as we could, to the relief and assistance of our poor distressed brethren, remaining alive, on board the Pearl and Severn, at Rio Janeiro.

Our Lieutenant seemed to have forgotten us, from our first coming ashore here; for having an apartment then assigned him at the Governor's, which was somewhat above two miles distant from the port, he had never since come


down to see how we fared, meeting, I suppose, with pretty good entertainment for himself. But it was requisite we should now seek after him. And accordingly Mr. Bulkeley, taking with him great part of our People, waited on him at his residence, and laid before him those circumstances I have just mentioned, that rendered our speedy departure from hence so necessary; begging him to use his interest [personal influence, Ed.] with the Governor that it might be hastened. To this he answered, "That he was as much concerned for the general interest as any of us; and that though we knew nothing of his stirring in this matter, he had, however, particularly and strongly urged the Governor about it; who had assured him, we could not be dispatched yet awhile, till some ship arrived that might carry us to Rio Janeiro, for that he could never bear the thought of our venturing any more in our own wretched vehicle, and that our dismission [sending away, Ed.] should not be delayed a moment after it was in his power."

Our detention was to be sure a great uneasiness to every one of us; and yet it was so plainly owing to a motive we could not disapprove, that it would have been equally rude and imprudent to have pressed this subject any farther at that time; so that Mr. Bulkeley took leave of the Lieutenant, with only recommending the affair to his care and attention, when a fit opportunity should offer.

An incident now fell out which, as we thought, furnished us with the means of sending intelligence of our circumstances to Captain Murray, Commander of the Pearl, at Rio Janeiro. Accordingly a letter to that gentleman was


drawn up by Mr. Bulkeley, and signed by almost all of us, containing a brief account of what had befallen us, from the day of our being wrecked unto that moment.

Mr. Bulkeley's uneasiness was not altogether removed by the sending of this epistle. He was so impatient to be at Rio Janeiro, that he determined to make another push, for obtaining a conveyance thither, some how or other. So, three days after he had been at the Governor's, with the Lieutenant, as I have said, he went there again, to have another conference with that Officer, whom he now used [behaved towards, Ed.] with much freedom. He told him, "That although he and his companions had the utmost reason to acknowledge the Governor's regard for them, which would not suffer him to permit the People's going from that port in their own crazy vessel, yet that need not prevent his granting to him, viz. Bulkeley, to the Carpenter, and one Jones, a pass and horses, in order for their going to Rio Janeiro by land, that so they might be no longer prevented from contributing, as far as in them lay, to the assistance of their distressed fellow subjects there; That he (the Lieutenant) could not, without failing of his duty, refuse instantly moving the Governor on this head [subject, Ed.], and using all his influence with that worthy magistrate to obtain this favour; That, if he had been sufficiently mindful of what his station required, he would have needed no excitement [arousal, Ed.] to this; but, at his first coming hither, without delaying a single day, or regarding the cost, would have got a courier dispatched to Janeiro by land, to advise our friends there of the


condition we were in, as well as the eager desire we had to be with them, and to have procured a vessel from thence, for transporting us all thither." The Lieutenant heard this harangue with unexpected calmness, and endeavoured to excuse himself by alleging, "That he had not only thought of this very thing, and intended, almost as soon as he came ashore, to enquire about it, but resolved to have gone himself on the errand, though the journey should have lain him [that is, cost him, Ed.] in all he was worth, if he had not been assured the going by land to Janeiro was absolutely impracticable." To this Bulkeley warmly [angrily, Ed.] answered, "He wondered a man of any sense could suffer himself to be so egregiously imposed on, for that his own observation alone might have convinced him of the falsehood of such a suggestion, as there was a weekly intercourse notoriously [well-known weekly communication, Ed.] carried on over land between the places; That it must be owned that there was no travelling from hence thither without a good deal of fatigue and some danger; but that surely could be no objection to one who had already encountered and overcome so much of both, and in a far greater degree; That he could not be ignorant how expensive our maintenance in this country must be to our Sovereign, whose interest should be consulted by every loyal subject, and particularly by those who had the honour to wear his commission; that, moreover, which was a consideration of no little weight, by a delay in the present case, we might be forced to winter at Rio Grand, which would be a sad misfortune


indeed, but which must be our fate, should we loiter there, till not only our own ships, but perhaps the Spanish Flota [Fleet, Ed.] likewise, were departed from Janeiro for Europe." He insisted therefore on his strenuously urging the Governor, without any further demur, to grant what he required.

The Lieutenant thought Mr. Bulkeley as impertinent and troublesome now as Captain Cheap had formerly. We can be most sensibly pained with that which is very agreeable to us, when it is the case only of other people. Such a disposition is no credit to human nature, but it is to be found in the generality. This Officer was ready enough to cherish that Man in his opposition to the Captain, who now chides, reproaches and dictates to him in his turn. To get rid of his importunity, he promised him solemnly to press this matter on the Governor with all his force when they should be together that very day at dinner, and to acquaint him with the issue in the afternoon. Bulkeley waited impatiently for this message till night; but none coming, next morning he wrote the Lieutenant a most angry letter, "charging him with falsifying his engagement; upbraiding him with the necessity and miseries we were reduced to, which he accused him to be the cause of, by basely blackening us in the eyes of the Governor through false reports, whereby we were become hated, despised, and cut off from any further supply of provisions. He repeated all the reasons he had offered him yesterday in person for horses, a passport, and guide, adding some fresh circumstances to enforce


them. He told him he did not, in this business, ask any thing of him as a favour, but required it from him as a duty, which he once more advised him to perform, if he would be thought to have any regard to his Majesty's service."

This smart remonstrance touched the Lieutenant to the very heart. He got on horseback in less than an hour after he had read it and repaired to our quarters, where we never had the honour of his company before since we had been in them: that was at least three weeks. Indeed, he was received by us all cooly enough. We did not testify any respectful sense of his condescension in this visit, but rather gave him to understand that his absenting from us so long was highly disgusting. Most of us were assembled at the hospital, to take from thence the corpse of brother [fellow sailor, Ed.] Oram, a carpenter, who died that day, in order for its interment; so we left the Lieutenant to the compliments of Mess. Bulkeley and Cummins (such as they were). These two accompanied him to the Commandant, to solicit a further supply of victuals for us. That Officer was very humane; he readily undertook that we should have fresh beef and fish enough; but as for bread, he desired us to expect none, for none was on any terms to be had; which he assured us was a great vexation to him on our account.

In this state we rested pretty quietly for four or five days, our spirits being tolerably supported by expectation every moment of a ship's arriving with provision, the wind for some weeks having been fair, and then quickly returning with us all to Rio Janeiro. But these hopes proving


abortive, we became quite uneasy, and began to despair. To comfort us all they could, Bulkeley, Cummins, and the other adventurer, one Jones, declared, if they might only have a guide, they would travel on foot to Janeiro, and lose their lives or relieve us. The Lieutenant hearing this seemed to encourage their resolution, and went directly with them to the Governor, to obtain his consent to it. After representing to them, fairly and pathetically, the almost insuperable hardships and toils they must go through in the journey, that honourable and worthy gentleman agreed to their request, and told them they should have a guide, and all the assistance he was able to afford them; but, at the same time declared, that though he would no further oppose them, lest they should attribute any of their misfortunes to him, yet he was heartily grieved to find they were obstinately bent on so hazardous an enterprise. Captain Pemberton of the Land Forces, being present, told the Governor that with his leave he would accompany these brave, intrepid fellows in their perambulation. The Governor replied he would find too much cause to repent of his rashness, and said a great deal to dissuade him from his purpose. But Pemberton nobly persisted, saying he had a company, at least some remains of one, on board his Majesty's ship the Severn, where his obligations to his Royal Master and to his poor Men therefore called him, so that no prospect of hardships or danger should ever divert his intention, provided his Honour would be so good as to allow it. The Governor answered he would leave it to his own choice: he had nothing in view,


but to forward, as far as in him lay, every scheme that might be to their advantage; for that he ever did and ever should love an Englishman, and so long as he had any thing himself, they should have a share of it.

Having thus far engaged the Governor, our adventurers set about providing for their journey. Accordingly, on the 9th of March, two of them, viz. Jones and Bulkeley, crossed to a village on the other side of the river, to hire five or six men to go with them to St. Catherine's [modern-day Santa Catarina, Ed.] They were hardly got over the water on this errand when letters came to the Governor from St. Catherine's, which brought him the agreeable information of four vessels being on their way to Rio Grand. He had no sooner received those tidings but he instantly dispatched a messenger with them to Bulkeley and his companion; who thereupon immediately returned without proceeding any farther in the affair about which they went. At their coming back a consultation was held, wherein it was resolved they should decline, or at least suspend, the intended journey. And well was it for us all they did so; for in little more than a week after the news, the abovesaid ships from Janeiro arrived, and by them we learnt that the Severn and Pearl, which we so impatiently desired to see, and in which we hoped for a happy passage to our country, were gone from that place towards Barbados, above five weeks before.

Nothing could be more welcome than the arrival of these ships. They brought some money, store of provision and, moreover, the King of Portugal's pardon for all those who


had any hand in the late mutiny. This was committed to the Brigadier Governor of St. Catherine's, who came with it in one of the ships, and who was commissioned to publish it to the garrison at Rio Grand. He had orders to receive the revolters to mercy, on their submission and returning to their allegiance, and to reinstate the Officers whom they had riotously deposed. All this he performed with due solemnity. We were present at the ceremony, which was after the following manner.

On the 20th of march, about ten in the forenoon, the Soldiers were drawn up on the parade, with all their accoutrements. In a few minutes after, the Brigadier appeared. He began with the occasion on which they were assembled. He then expatiated largely, and in lofty terms, on the great qualities, but especially the goodness and clemency, of his Portuguese Majesty, their august Sovereign; a most gracious instance of which, he said, he would now proclaim to them. Hereupon, with a loud voice, he pronounce the Act of Grace and Indemnity: but which depended on certain terms, therein specified. When he had ended, there was an almost universal acclamation: I say almost, for it was observed of some that they did not receive it with any obvious marks of gratitude or joy, as a favour. The brigadier then told them he had another token of the Royal benignity and care for them, for which he doubted not but their hearts would overflow with thankfulness: And that was, their arrears; for the paying off a considerable part of which he had brought money along with him,


and a sufficient sum was on the way for entirely discharging the remainder; and that as what he had in hand should be immediately distributed, so the rest would be punctually paid them very shortly. This latter declaration had like to have knocked all on the head. The whole garrison, to a man, cried out — all or none — all or none, and were presently in a mighty ferment. Some said plainly, they would go over to the King of Spain, of whom they were sure they should always receive their full wages; that they were soldiers to none any longer than they received their pay; that they depended on the Commandant to see that justice were done to them; that he, not the Brigadier, was their Commander, and that they would stand by him with their lives, to the last drop of their blood.

The Commandant knew well these bravadoes would cool before long, and that their professed adherence to him, though ever so faithful, which yet he had no reason to look for or rely on, would not support him against the power of his Prince; especially, as he could see the majority of the garrison was ready to submit and acquiesce in the terms offered. He was wiser therefore than to suffer himself to be imposed on thereby, to his own destruction. So he told these mighty fellows that he regarded them above his own life, which he was ready to sacrifice in their behalf; that he had taken the command of them at their desire merely to obtain a removal of their just complaints; and as there was now a fair prospect of their grievances being effectually redressed, they must excuse him if the end of his


commission being answered, he did not choose to exercise it any longer, and therefore, as he thought himself now obliged to resign it, he wished them to join with him in this instance of resignation and loyalty, and lay hold of that pardon which their dear and dread Lord the King had so mercifully condescended to offer them. The moment he uttered these words, he clapped a firelock on his shoulder, and stepped into the rank of a common Soldier. The Brigadier seeing this, ran to him, clasped him in his arms, assuring him that he would make a true report of his behaviour to the Court, and that this gallant action of his should turn out greatly to his honour and advantage.

The rest of the mock Officers thought it was now in vain to persist. There was no resource, no hope of refuge, if they continued in their rebellion. Their submission, if it was not voluntary, would be forced; and a severe punishment would certainly revenge the refusal of unmerited favour. On these considerations they presently followed the Commandant's example. They degraded themselves, without farther delay, into private Men; they divested themselves of those usurped plumes which they would otherwise be stripped of with violence, and quietly reverted to their proper subordination.

Thus the Government recovered the right channel, from whence it had been diverted by the exorbitances of those to whom the administration of it was primarily committed. Few seditions spring from other causes: rebellions are, for the most part, extorted. There are a thousand offences against the People, for one committed


groundlessly against the Prince; a thousand encroachments on the Subject's property, for one on the prerogative of the Sovereign.— But it is a farce frequently acted on the stage of the world, in all states and kingdoms, as well as at Rio Grand: I mean the injured begging or, with professions of humblest gratitude, accepting pardon from the invaders of their rights, their insolent oppressors. Amazing stupidity of human nature!— And yet, perhaps, the temper, however mean and grovelling, is providential.— Were it otherwise; were there generally in men a quicker sensibility of wrong, a disposition more forward to resent and revenge, while there is such a propensity in rulers to defraud and tyrannize; what could there be but universal confusion, but hurting and destroying over the face of the Earth?— He that takes a strict survey of his own species will be apt to think that in the original constitution of it, some were formed only to do mischief, and others tamely to submit to them;— that these different sorts of Men were relatively framed as cats and mice, hounds and hares seem to be.— This may be thought a strange adjustment in the moral system: but [following lines from the play "Cato", by Richard Addison, 1710. Ed.]

The ways of Heaven are dark and intricate;

Our understanding traces them in vain,
Lost and bewildered in the fruitless search.

I was led to such reflections as these on beholding that ridiculous scene I have been describing.— A parcel of half-paid, half-fed, half-naked creatures admitted to Mercy, after


audaciously endeavouring to do themselves justice on the authors of their wrongs; receiving their forfeited lives, forsooth, from those whose crimes against these very culprits sufficiently merited the gallows.

The vessels that came from Rio Janeiro being to return as soon as might be, (not all at once, but singly, as they could be freighted [as soon as their cargo was loaded, Ed.]) we resolved on applying for a passage in the first of them, which we were told was intended to sail on the 27th of March. Mr. Bulkeley went to the Lieutenant on the 22d or 23d of that month to consult with him about the affair, taking it for granted no obstruction would happen therein from the Government, and much less from him. The Lieutenant said, "That, to be sure, the earliest opportunity of these ships was to be embraced; and that he hoped, for his part, to go with the soonest, and to have the company of his brother Officers, as probably there might be room for them; but as they should be greatly incommoded if all went together, he doubted the private Men must wait a second embarkation; which was a much better way than being crowded, and which only he supposed the Governor would allow of." Bulkeley, like a true patriot, fired at this: "Sir, said he, this is what I could not have expected from you. You are, by your office, under particular obligations to take care of the People; and it would become you, if any are to be left behind the rest, to be the foremost of that number, or to be the very last Man of us upon this shore. You are in the same relation to us, as a shepherd is to his


flock. But a good pastor never runs from his sheep. when they are to be conducted home; he sees them safely on their way, and then watchfully follows them. Whereas I find you, on the contrary, purpose to be neither at the head nor at the tail of your charge; but to provide for yourself, and leave them to shift as they can.— However, if you are above your duty, who are secure of half-pay from the unhappy hour in which we were wrecked; give me the security only of your hand for my pay, during the same time, and I will stay behind, and take on me the care of the People, while you dispose of your own dear self as you will. But if you don't like to enter into this engagement, if your concern is only for your own interest, life and safety, why then I will be as solicitous and as sedulous with regard to mine; so you must not think much if I strive to get home as speedily as I can, and if I try to put it out of your power to hinder my going with the foremost."

At the close of this speech Mr. Bulkeley left the Lieutenant abruptly; and taking with him the Carpenter and four or five more, went off hand [at once, Ed.] to the Governor's to see if they could obtain his leave for going. The Lieutenant was close at their heels, and got thither as soon as they. He anticipated their errand: for before any one of them could open his lips, he made the Governor a low bow, and said, "Sir, Mr. Bulkeley and the rest of these gentlemen are of opinion that all our People may go off together, in the first vessels that sails to Rio


Janeiro; I know your Honour thinks otherwise, and upon very good grounds; however, Mr. Bulkeley is mighty angry, and reproaches me severely, because I cannot come into his sentiments."

Bulkeley was all impatience; he had much ado to hear him thus far; he could no longer forbear interrupting him; and was breaking in with great emotion on the Lieutenant's discourse, when the Governor put a stop to both the disputants by saying, "Mr. Bulkeley, the Officers of the Marines, you, the Carpenter, and these others who intended going with you by land, and were five or six, if I remember, are at liberty to embark, if you like it, in the first ship that is returning to Janeiro; but as this vessel in not the King's, but the property of some particular persons, so you must all of you pay, both for your passage and provisions. I wish it were in my power to act agreeably to my inclination; but as it really is not, we must submit to the exigence of affairs, and in the present case it must be as I have acquainted you. I know you have wherewithal to furnish yourselves with what is necessary; and I am glad to find that, with respect to money, you have enough to answer all occasions. You have divers [several, Ed.] times requested my leave for going by land at your own expense, and I am pleased to think that as a conveyance by sea will be much cheaper, so you can more easily defray the charge of it."

Here he paused, and Bulkeley replied, very briskly [sharply, Ed.], "I am heartily sorry your Honour is


so greatly mistaken, in regard to our abilities, as I fear we shall suffer by that opinion. It is not to be denied that we applied to you in the manner as you say, and offered to go by land at our own charges; but it is also true that we were forced to sell our watches for advancing the money that was to maintain us in that journey. Suppose what we raised by that means may suffice to provide for a passage by sea, (and that's as much as it will) still, what must the other poor wretches of us do, who have not a farthing of cash amongst them! I presume, Sir, you need not be told that the King, our Sovereign, allows all his subjects that are in our distressed condition five vintins [unit of currency, Ed.] per day for sustenance, till they get home or have reached some English settlement. If you will be so good then to let us have as much money, or the credit of that allotment, as will answer our present exigencies, we shall be under infinite obligations, and will give you all the security we can for its reimbursement."

Just as Bulkeley had spoken this, the Governor, as if he had suddenly bethought him of something, stepped forward to the Commissary and Major, who were at a little distance, and was observed to talk pretty earnestly with one and the other of them for the space of four or five minutes; after which, returning to Bulkeley and his companions, who stood where he had left them, expecting his resolution, he said, "Gentlemen, I wish your abilities were ten times better than you represent them; but whatever they are, I can do no otherwise


than I have told you. As for what Mr. Bulkeley talks, about crediting his Britannic Majesty, it's a point out of my province; besides, the thing is so insignificant, that to open an account for it would be quite ridiculous; and therefore, without any more words, Gentlemen, you are heartily welcome to what you have had but, in what remains, you must provide for yourselves."

This finishing stroke was almost killing to Bulkeley, and the rest that joined with him; but as for the Lieutenant, he seemed to be very little affected by it; or rather, to take a pleasure in his brethren's disappointment. However, he accompanied them when they went from the Governor's presence, and pretended great sorrow to find that he would contribute nothing to their passage; although, at the same time, he endeavoured to hammer out some excuses for him. Bulkeley took him up very bluntly and told him that his apologies for the Governor, as well as his professions of regard to them, were in vain; and that it was of more importance now to contrive some scheme for forwarding the poor People to Rio Janeiro. The Lieutenant said he should be glad to hear any expedient of his for that purpose; for he found that nothing he could think or do in the affair would satisfy him. Why then, replied Bulkeley, "What if we should sell the Speedwell? I fancy she would bear all our expenses thither." With all my heart, said the Lieutenant; part with her and welcome, if you can get a chap to purchase her. On this Bulkeley and the Carpenter, mightily pleased with his concession, repaired


to the Master of the vessel that was going off, not making the least doubt of an easy agreement, to know what he would have for our passage, and diet throughout the voyage? He answered, forty shillings per head. This demand startles them a little, it being a good deal higher than they expected. Hereupon they repaired again to the Lieutenant, to inform him how the case was. He shook his head and replied, if it were so, "Selling the boat was of no signification, as she would not bring any thing like the money we should have occasion for, at that rate; and therefore, as he added, he could not on second thoughts consent to the disposal of her."

Though we were mightily chagrined at this desultory behaviour of the Lieutenant, we were not at all surprised, as instances thereof were very frequent. Bulkeley was however sadly perplexed, not conceiving it possible to get us away from Rio Grand without doing with the Speedwell as he had proposed. His ill-humour on this score caused him to pass some more of his usual compliments on the Lieutenant. He frankly told him, "He was still the man he had always been; saying and unsaying, never to be depended on. That if he went thence and left any of the People behind him, he should not only think, but make no scruple of declaring, what he thought. That he had bartered away so many of his fellow subjects, and bribed the Governor in his own favour with a present of the Speedwell."

All the Lieutenant could offer in his own vindication made no impression on his severe


accuser; whatever excuse he contrived, the other had some way of detecting its downright falsity or its insignificance. Nay, being determined to let him have no rest while he was acting a mean and illicit part, he went to him the following morning, either to persuade him into his measures, or to upbraid and plague him if he was obstinate and would not comply; and he had stored up a sufficient stock of materials for that purpose. Indeed it happened that he was prevented from disposing of these in the way he intended, by the Lieutenant's hastening to acquaint him, the moment he came into his sight, that the Brigadier had now, on his persuasion and after a mature deliberation, regulated things so as must certainly content every one. That, in brief, he had settled it thus: Mr. Bulkeley, with the others who had petitioned for going (eight or nine of them) should be sent off by the very first opportunity, and furnished with all necessaries for the voyage; whereas he (the Lieutenant) would be obliged to stay and take care of the rest of the People till a conveniency offered for their passage, and then go with them; and this latter embarkation should not fail of being on board the second ship that sailed. This account was exceedingly grateful to our Gunner, who immediately thereon became wondrously civil to the Lieutenant; especially after the latter had acknowledged that both the Governor and the Brigadier had reproved him sharply for the very thing Bulkeley was offended at; I mean, his intention of deserting the Crew, whom he should have considered as a flock, whereof he had undertaken the care and government, and getting


away before them, with only a few of the Officers. Whether the Lieutenant told Bulkeley this circumstance in the simplicity of his heart; or because he imagined he would hear it from some one else, more to his disadvantage; or purely to soften the Gunner's anger a little towards him (as nothing mollifies resentment so effectually as any evil from another hand befalling those we hate) I will not say; but certainly it produced, as I observed, this last effect; so that now they began to concert together very amicably; and Bulkeley was very well pleased to be gone with the first, seeing he had the satisfaction of leaving the majority of the People to follow, under the guardianship of so good an overseer as he now thought the Lieutenant to be.

On the 28th of March, 1742, being Sunday, the embarkation we had so long and earnestly desired took place; when Bulkeley, Cummins, the Surgeon of Marines, the two Mates, the Boatswain, the Cooper, and a few of inferior rank went on board a brigantine named the St. Catherine, with as much salt beef, coarse flour and the like necessaries as might be sufficient for the voyage.

On the 31st they set sail, the wind not serving till then, with a brisk gale and good weather. On the 8th of April, in the morning, they anchored before St. Sebastian. They left that place on the 10th, mightily pleased therewith in all respects: the harbour being capacious, safe and of easy entrance; the country charming, pleasant, fertile of many productions conducing to the delight as well as exigences of life, and abounding


with fowl. Nor does the sea fail of contributing its bounty to the advantage of the inhabitants, affording plenty of excellent fish. On the 12th, before noon, they happily arrived and dropped anchor before the great town, or city rather, of Rio Janeiro.

The next day, April the 13th, Mr. Bulkeley and the rest aforementioned were introduced to the Governor; who, after hearing the doleful story of our adventures, treated them with the utmost compassion and humanity, and gave order for their being supplied with everything that might be to their satisfaction. There fortunately happened to be a Dutch surgeon at the place, who spoke English perfectly well. He was sent for on this occasion, and served them not only as an interpreter, but the Governor was pleased to appoint him also a sort of Consul over their affairs and gave him the charge of providing for their accommodation. Immediately this new Officer, accompanied by no less than a Brazilian titulado [(perhaps) an aristocrat, Ed.], went in quest of a house for our gentry [group, Ed.] to lodge in. A very handsome one was fixed on, to which they were presently conducted and put in possession of it, with an allotment of fire and candle and a certain sum to be expended each day in victuals for their subsistence. Over and above all this, they were feasted for the first day with an elegant entertainment, dinner and supper, at the public expense; and several convenient utensils, which were not in their hired habitation, were sent them from the Governor's own palace.

In this situation even Mr. Bulkeley, who was so generally discontented, seemed to be vastly


pleased; so were the Lieutenant [apparently, others had arrived already, Ed.], the Carpenter and the rest. But this felicity was soon interrupted. The Governor, when he dismissed them from his presence, and had given orders for their being accommodated with a house and provisions, charged them to preserve a harmony when together, between themselves, and to be careful of giving any disturbance by feuds or quarrels, to a people among whom they were strangers, but who had however received them very hospitably. This was a good precaution, and grounded in part on some symptoms of disagreement between the Lieutenant and the Gunner, which could not be concealed, even while they were under his Excellency's eye, and giving him an account, as I have mentioned, of their adventures; but still more on the sour look and manifest rancour which appeared in the behaviour of the Boatswain, by which indications the Governor suspected him to be of a turbulent disposition; and so concluded from the whole that animosities and contentions were likely enough to break out in this little flock, which might not only embroil them but also create others uneasiness. He was not mistaken in his apprehensions, for it was no longer than the very next day when the event confirmed them. The Consul, as I may now call him, going in the morning with all our folks to the Treasury, in order to receive their allowance-money, the disturbance began there. It was proper that an acknowledgment of the payment of it should be given by one of our Officers at least; and that being required by the Paymaster, the Consul desired Mr. Oakley, who


had been Surgeon to the Land-Forces in the Wager, to sign a receipt for it. He thought him as fit a person as any, and he could not imagine there would be any objection thereto, for he had no particular view in proposing him as surety, nor did he intend an affront to any other of the company. However the Boatswain, who now looked on himself in no less a capacity than that of our Commander, took great offence, supposing a preference hereby given to Oakley above him. On this he swelled [(that is) full of his own importance, Ed.], put on a terribly fierce aspect, and dropped some resentful expressions. The Consul, who was unacquainted with the man's temper, did not conceive the matter; and so, having got the cash, would have given it to Oakley to distribute. But the poor Surgeon, though he had courage enough to face a wounded soldier, and could without trembling trepan a broken skull or perform an amputation, had not intrepidity sufficient for encountering the Boatswain's fury. Hereupon he prayed to be excused the office, telling the Consul the Boatswain was a quarrelsome fellow and would, if he undertook it, not only insult and fall out with him but make the whole place uneasy, and thereby greatly prejudice all our affairs. The Consul stared at this account, told the Boatswain he was sorry to hear such a character of him from a gentleman that would not, he supposed, belie [speak falsely of, Ed.] him; and that if the case was such, to render them all as easy [comfortable (at ease), Ed.] as he could, he would even make the division of their allowance himself: and so accordingly he did. However this expedient was not able to produce the desired effect for our Boatswain, if he could not find an offence ready to his


hand, would not fail to create one. The Governor had ordered our money to be distributed to us in this proportion, viz. to each common Soldier six vintins a day, to every officer ten. He was pleased to assign a very good reason for this distinction, such a one as would have satisfied any reasonable body, but the Boatswain was not pleased to approve of it at all. He was positive the private Men had an equal right with the Officers, and therefore all ought to be served alike. On this a hot dispute arose; all the rest readily acquiesced in the Governor's appointment, but he fumed and swaggered, virulently abusing the Cooper, the Gunner, and every Officer present, with most opprobrious language; so that the Consul was thoroughly convinced he had not been misrepresented by Oakley, and he was determined to check his insolence. Accordingly, though he was too much a gentleman to address him in a style like his own, he however spoke to him with such an air of contempt as mortified the bravado exceedingly; and to plague him still the more, he affected to express a favourable opinion of those towards whom he was most abusive. As for the division of the money, he told him that should be in every respect as the Governor had directed, and that those who did not choose to receive it on those terms might let it alone. This answer and deserved treatment stopped his mouth a little while, and he condescended to accept of his money along with the rest, as it was ordered; but it was no sooner in his pocket than he relapsed int his former scurrility [insulting behaviour, Ed.] and discharged a fresh load of it on all about him. When he had exhausted his spleen [anger, Ed.] for that


time, and was retired, Mr. Bulkeley, Mr. Cummins and the Cooper requested the Consul to order it so as that they might not be lodged or messed with this quarrelsome fellow: for that it would be impossible to maintain any peace if they were not separated, as they were perfectly convinced by long experience. Upon this the Consul spoke to the Boatswain, who answered, "That he scorned their company as much as they could dislike his; but to show that he had more good-nature than they allowed him, he was ready to yield them the entire possession of the apartment they were in, which he had a right to in common with them, and would take up his abode with the private Men." This concession was very pleasing to the complainants, as thinking they should now enjoy some tranquility. But the next day they found themselves disappointed: for having in the morning locked the two doors to their room, and taken a walk some miles to view the country, at their return in the evening they found the chamber broken open, and some things belonging to Bulkeley spoiled or destroyed. While he and his companions were considering of this, an Irishman with whom the Boatswain had contracted a great intimacy, and one of our own Men that sided with them, came into the room, sent as supposed by the Boatswain on purpose to make a riot, and quarrelled particularly with the Gunner and the Cooper. As they four fell to fighting Mr. Cummins called the guards. The Hibernian [Irishman, Ed.] on this made off, but East, our own Man, was secured and at Bulkeley's desire committed to prison. But this was on the latter's


consenting to be confined with him, according to the custom of that place, for there he that requires another to be sent to jail must be incarcerated also, till the magistrate allows of his release. This happened in favour of Mr. Bulkeley very soon; for he had not been in custody half an hour when the Governor, in whose palace the prison was, ordered him into his presence and, after examining him and enquiring of the Officer the circumstances of the case, discharged him with leave to go to his habitation, commanding the other to be detained till his pleasure was farther signified. When Bulkeley returned home he found all there in uproar. The Boatswain and two rascally fellows he had brought thither were abusing the Cooper; and as soon as Bulkeley entered they fell upon him also, and that so violently that he thought both he and the Cooper would have been murdered. In some time they got the riot appeased; however they did not think it advisable to lodge there that night, for fear of another assault at a season [time of day, circumstance, Ed.] when they would be in no condition for a defence. The following morning application was made to the Consul to interpose his authority, for the preventing of these intolerable disorders. He sent for us all to attend him when, addressing him to the whole company, he observed [remarked, Ed.] how scandalous it was for so small a number of men, of the same nation, comrades a long time, companions in a series of misfortunes, and in a foreign land at the courtesy of strangers, to be at mortal enmity amongst themselves; thereby adding greatly to their calamities, and exposing one another to the hatred and contempt of those to whom it


was their chief interest to be acceptable. The Boatswain, at whose behaviour this reproof was mainly levelled, was so far from being mended [corrected, Ed.] thereby that it served only to renew and increase his rage, which he let fly at every one about him. In short, his incorrigibility was so evident, and the dread of him so great, that it was resolved to separate him at any rate and get rid of him if possible. With this view, Bulkeley, Cummins, the Cooper, the Surgeon, with two or three more determined on quitting those lodgings in which the Government had placed them, and taking some apartment distant from the town at their own expense. Accordingly, finding one to their mind about a league off, they hired it by the month. They took possession that very evening, and were mighty forward in congratulating themselves on their imagined security at a retirement so remote from their disturber. But as to this they were quickly undeceived, for before the close of next day they received a very unpleasing visit: not indeed from the Boatswain, but from a couple of his trusty Trojans [tough individuals, by analogy to the warriors of ancient Troy, Ed.], who took upon them with much impertinence to make a strict inquisition [enquiry, Ed.] into the grounds and motives of their removal and to demand, in the name of their Commander, as they termed the Boatswain, a sight of Mr. Bulkeley's journal. Mr. Bulkeley was not used to receive proposals of this nature with extraordinary patience; however on this occasion, considering the untoward circumstances that he and his brethren were in, he was pleased to answer the two envoys with such prudence and moderation that though he did not comply with what they


required, they departed seemingly contented, and highly to the satisfaction of our new housekeepers [tenants (that is, Bulkeley, Cummins and companions), Ed.] who were in hope they should now rest in quiet and be troubled with them no more. But a few hours after, near midnight, there was a fresh and startling alarm. There came three fellows then to the door, and rapping on it very loudly insisted on its being opened, telling those within they were the persons who had been with them in the afternoon. Bulkeley and the rest would by no means admit them, alleging the unseasonableness [inappropriateness, Ed.] of the time and their having no business at all with them as they knew of; adding, if they had they might come and transact it in the morning. With this answer they were greatly provoked, leaving the place with some bitter execrations and menaces of forcing them out of their nest before daylight. This was only a bravado by which they thought to intimidate Bulkeley and his companions, and induce them to admit these ruffians in order to pacify them, or inquire into the reality of their threats, for we found afterwards they did not return; however our People were so terrified therewith that, fearing a number of desperados might be engaged by their enemies to murder them, and reflecting on their own defenceless condition, they made over a back wall and betook them to the adjacent fields till sunrise. As soon as they thought the Consul was stirring, Bulkeley and Cummins waited on him in the town, and represented what had happened, particularly in respect of the journal, which Bulkeley apprehended the Boatswain was determined one way or other to get possession of.


The Consul hereon advised Bulkeley to deposit the journal in his hands, or in those of some responsible citizen, where it might remain safely till an opportunity offered for their embarking homeward; and for the security of their persons in the mean time, he would provide them a place of more safety, and would recommend them to the neighbourhood for protection and assistance, in case any violence should be offered.

All this was as generous and obliging as could be wished; and in consequence of this prudent disposal of their affairs they dwelt peaceably for near a month. Yet still neither the Gunner, the Carpenter or the Cooper could be easy in their own apprehensions. The Boatswain had a mortal aversion to these three; and they on the other hand had an abhorrence of him, and thought themselves in the utmost peril while they were within reach of his malice and barbarity. The Consul perceived how miserable they were (for whenever they met him he was sure to be entertained with these dismal ideas) and was so humane as to contrive for their relief, and indeed for his own. There was a ship in the port, bound to Bahia and Lisbon, that was to sail very shortly. The Captain of this vessel he prevailed on to carry them to one of those places, on condition of the Governor's granting them a pass, and their working the voyage for their passage. This they readily agreed to do, and were very thankful to the Consul for his good office. Their pass was drawn up in a most friendly style, signed by the Governor and certified by the Solicitor of State.

On the 20th of May, 1742, in the afternoon, these three gentlemen went on board.


The vessel that was to carry them was named the St. Tubes, mounting twenty-eight guns. There happened to be in the ship a Spanish Don, returning to Europe. No sooner our People embarked but he took great offence at them, as Englishmen, and told the Captain in a harsh imperious way they should not sail in the same bottom [ship, Ed.] with him, who was a nobleman, and insisted on their being turned immediately ashore. This threw our poor adventurers into a new consternation, for they feared they should now be liable to the contempt and insults, as well as outrage of their enemy, by reason of this disappointment, on the score of which he would not fail to triumph; besides, they thought it would lessen them in the eyes of the Governor, the Consul and the inhabitants of the place to be thus turned off: all which could not but mortify them prodigiously, over and above the vexatious consideration of their being disgracefully deprived of the fairest opportunity they had any ground to hope for of getting home to their own country. But they did not long continue under these anxieties: the Captain's brave and generous behaviour soon quieted them. He gave the proud Spaniard to understand that though he were a Lord, yet he was not the Commander of that vessel, that he was no more than a passenger in her, equally as those whom he so much despised; that he himself only was master, and would therefore do as he pleased in his on ship, and carry such as he liked without being controlled by any one's directions. This rebuff abated the Don's haughtiness, and was no less a cordial to poor Bulkeley and his comrades. Nay, really, it


produced a farther and happier effect in their favour, for it humbled and even mollified their foe so far that he not only forbore insisting on their expulsion but, the ensuing day, condescended to look on them without manifesting any distaste and at last to enter into a conversation with them about their misfortunes; the relation of which moved his compassion to such a degree that, not satisfied to cheer them merely with expressions of pity and condolence, he persevered from that moment in performing all the offices of a most beneficent friend: he fed them plenteously from his own table during the whole voyage; he solaced their hearts daily with good liquors; he was hourly saying somewhat to pleasure or comfort them; and in short loaded them with incessant testimonies of his bounty [kindness, Ed.]. All this was agreeable to the noble disposition of the Spanish nation which, though with a full measure of pride, yields to no other on earth for magnanimity, or generosity of temper.

On the 17th of May, towards noon, the St. Tubes anchored before the town of Bahia. Mr. Bulkeley, Mr. Cummins and the Cooper landed presently; and being admitted to the Viceroy, showed him the pass that was given them by the Governor of Janeiro, expecting he would be induced to afford them thereupon some marks of his favour, as he would be thereby convinced of their distress and of their being subjects of a Prince in strict alliance and amity with his master. To influence him the more, they gave him a minute detail of their hospitable treatment at Rio Grand and Janeiro, at both which places they had been allowed eight vintins per man a day; and


prayed his Excellency to grant them the same provision. He assured them without any hesitation they had nothing of this nature to look for at his hands. As for their pass, he said it imported only that they should be forwarded to Lisbon; and in order thereto they need but to embark on board the vessel they came in, which would be the first that sailed to that port. M. Bulkeley, on this very unfriendly behaviour of the Viceroy, spoke to him very plainly; but his speeches, how sharp soever, made no impression. The Captain who brought us pleaded earnestly with him also in our behalf, but to as little purpose. Nay, the good man offered to be at the expense of maintaining us himself, provided only the Viceroy would give the sanction of his name to a bill of what he should imburse [pay, Ed.] for our account, that so the Consul General at Lisbon might be satisfied of the debt and repay him. But he would not even do this. In short, he peremptorily refused to make us any allowance at all. We might indeed have starved in this place, and under the very eye of this inhospitable Governor (who seemed as fond of the French as he was hard-hearted towards us) if Bulkeley had not happened to be somewhat in pocket, and to increase that little portion of money by the sale of his watch.

After a stay here of almost half a year with the worst usage imaginable, both from the inhabitants and Governor, we departed for Lisbon on board the same ship and with the same friendly Captain that brought us hither from Rio Janeiro.

I will bid a final adieu to this place when I have given you a brief description of it. Bahia


stands on a spacious bay that runs more than forty miles into the continent and is about eight miles over, interspersed with several small pretty islands producing a good deal of cotton, and has three great rivers running into it. The city is large, populous, opulent and well-built, but disagreeably situate on a very uneven ground, so that the streets, though broad and straight, are a kind of precipices not to be ascended without a deal of trouble; and there is a necessity for employing cranes and other machines for conveying of goods from the town to the port, or from the port to the town. The inhabitants are many of them very rich, and as these cannot use coaches or chairs like ours, by reason of the aforesaid steepness; instead of those, they are carried about in fine cotton beds pendent [suspended, Ed.] from a long pole which two negros carry on their heads or shoulders. These litters are covered by a canopy with curtains that may be drawn close or opened at pleasure.

The trade of this place is very considerable in all sorts of commodities. The houses, which are between two and three thousand, are mostly brick or stone, many of them spacious and sumptuously furnished. The churches and other public buildings are stately. The cathedral is a noble pile [large, imposing building, Ed.], gorgeously adorned with carving, gilding and the like, inside and out. Its furniture is of vast worth in crosses, candlesticks and lamps, all of massy [massive/solid, Ed.] silver. There is a most delightful prospect from an area before it, of the whole bay with its islands. There is a fine hospital adjoining, well endowed. The Jesuits' church is a grand edifice of marble from Europe, the utensils of


which are exceedingly valuable. The Carmelites, Benedictines, Franciscans, Augustines and Capuchins have all rich and fine houses. The palace of the Viceroy is truly magnificent; the archbishop's is little inferior, the Courts of Judicature [justice, Ed.] and other public structures are all in a grand style. The principal inhabitants are tolerably polite and courteous in their behaviour, but extremely proud, affecting extraordinary richness and gaiety in their apparel: for though they are prohibited the wearing of gold or silver lace, they make abundant amends by a load of those metals in beads, chains, little images of saints, ear-rings, crosses &c, with which they are not only profusely decked themselves but their black women slaves also are adorned.

Yet with all this grandeur and foppery there appear throughout the whole city such marks of wretchedness and misery, in one kind, as cannot but shock a Christian eye and move an humane heart at once to pity and indignation. I mean those poor creatures one meets everywhere, the slaves, who are employed either in carrying their lordly masters in the beds above-mentioned up and down the streets, or sweating under other most grievous toils and burdens imposed by their cruel tyrants with the utmost rigour, and punished with the severest cruelty on the least failure, which in their fits of ill humour proceeds often to the killing of them. These unfortunate caitiffs [captives, Ed.], both those they retain to do their drudgery as well as great numbers they traffic in and expose to sale, are all unclad, having hardly ever any covering but a clout to hide their


nudities. What an offensive contrast are these black, brawny, reeking, naked brutes to their delicate masters, reclining on velvet pillows in those luxurious vehicles I have before described.

Provisions are excessively dear all about here, particularly fish. This complaint is owing to several causes. As to fish, it might be had in plenty out as sea, but they will not go so far to take it; and in the bay it is destroyed, or kept from coming, by the multitude of whales frequenting the place. These are a smaller species than those of Greenland. Many of them are caught, cut up, and the flesh sold in small pieces like beef, at a market. Other reasons of the scarcity and high price of food are: First, the general neglect of agriculture, the people being so intent on the tobacco and sugar trade that the sowing or planting scarce anything else is minded. Secondly, the soil is infested by such infinite swarms of ants (which these folks stupidly suffer to increase till they are become a very plague) that the greens and fruits are mostly devoured before they are well sprung out of the earth. Thirdly, the commodities there imported from Europe, as wine, meal &c. are often corrupted and spoiled in the passage, and so are generally very bad or, if good, at an extravagant rate.

I now return to my narrative, from which this little account of Bahia may be considered as no unnatural digression. I said we sailed from thence in the St. Tubes which had brought us thither, and with the same honest, good-natured and beneficent Captain. We weighed anchor on the 11th of September 1742, along with a Portuguese man-of-war and two Indiamen [merchant ships operated by the Portuguese East India Company, Ed.]; but they much out-sailing us, to our great regret


we parted company in less than eight and forty hours. We had stormy weather and were twice in real imminent danger. The behaviour of the sailors and passengers both times was to the last degree ridiculous: all upon their knees offering a profusion of vows and prayers to their saints, but not one thing could they be prevailed on to attempt for their safety. We English under God, by our labour and skill preserved the vessel and the lives of all on board, again and again. But our deliverances were by the Captain and the whole Crew most devoutly ascribed to a she [female, Ed.] saint, whose name I have forgotten, and it was resolved when they arrived at Lisbon to go to this Lady's church in procession and make a considerable offering at her shrine. We landed at Lisbon on Saturday the 28th of November and, as had been vowed, the day following every soul on board (but [apart from, Ed.] three or four of us English) not excepting the honest Captain and other Officers, or even the proud Spanish Don himself, went in solemn procession to the temple aforesaid. It was a long mile that these superstitious fools walked with bare feet, in very cold weather. There was carried before them in great pomp a new foresail, bent to the yard soon after we parted from Bahia, which the Captain presently after one of our escapes in a fit of grateful piety dedicated to this Senhora, to whose intercession forsooth [indeed, Ed.] they all thought we owed our preservation. This trophy was offered up to her ladyship and then redeemed, for better service on the ship, at an expense of near ninety pounds sterling.

Mr. Bulkeley, the Carpenter and your humble servant, as soon as we came from off the vessel, repaired to Change [(perhaps) went to the Exchange, Ed.], where we made


ourselves known to some gentlemen of the British Factory [trading house, Ed.] whom we there met with. They received us at first coolly enough: for, as they told us, the Lieutenant had been there before us and had prepossessed them with [already given them, Ed.] a very unfavourable account of our behaviour. We were sorry we could not confront our accuser, but he was just gone homeward in the packet boat. However Mr. Bulkeley being personally known to some of these gentlemen exerted his usual eloquence in justifying our conduct, and recriminating upon our adversary. He told them he was sure that Officer kept no journal, nor troubled himself with making any observations since the wreck of our vessel; and that he would find it a much harder point to vindicate his own actions than to fasten any just imputation on ours. This representation had a good effect on the Factors [agents/merchants, Ed.], who at Mr. Bulkeley's request perused his journal, which he was always ready to produce and communicate on every occasion. They seemed very well pleased with it, commending his care and exactness, and treated us while we stayed in that city with much courtesy and real kindness.

I am now drawing apace [rapidly, Ed.] to an end of this narrative. I would to God I could therewith close the scene of our misfortunes, but that did not terminate even with our native shore. On the 20th of December we set out from Lisbon, and embarking for England on board the Stirling Castle, reached Spithead on New Year's Day 1742-43. You will imagine the joy we felt on sight of our dear country, where we looked for the congratulatory caresses of our affectionate relations and friends. We thought of nothing now but landing and going directly


to our respective homes to receive the embraces of our wives and children. But we had hardly cast anchor when our Captain damped all the pleasing emotion of our souls by acquainting us that, in effect, we were prisoners. For he told us (which we had not the least suspicion of, though we knew he sent off a boat with expresses [express messages, Ed.]) that he had written concerning us to the Admiralty, and that we must remain where we were till he had an answer from their Lordships. The grief we expressed at this disappointment was proportionate to the hope we had conceived — that our sorrows were come to a period [stop, Ed.], and that domestic comforts would extinguish the memory of past afflictions. But there was no remedy beside patience. We continued in this confinement, as we now thought it, a fortnight, which seemed a year to us, at the end of which the Lords of the Admiralty were pleased to order us our liberty. Their message was to us almost as joyful as a reprieve or pardon is to a condemned malefactor. It was no sooner made known to us than we poured out thanksgivings to God, and blessing on our benefactors; and immediately after taking a respectful leave of the Officers and ship's Company, we went ashore to our several habitations. When we had reposed ourselves there for a few days we repaired [went, Ed.] to London, to petition the L__ds of the Ad______y [Lords of the Admiralty, Ed.] for our wages, and farther employment. But unhappily for us our enemies had influence enough to defeat our hopes and protract our misfortunes. However, what has befallen us thereupon (being without the period of the expedition I undertook to give you an account of) shall not be any part of this relation.


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