Thus having gotten what account I could from my man,
I plainly understood that he had been as bad as any of the rest of the cannibals,
having been formerly among the savages who used to come on shore on the farthest part of the island,
upon the same bloody occasion as he was brought hither for;
and some time after I carried him to that place where he pointed;
and no sooner did he come there,
but he presently knew the ground,
signifying to me that he was once there when they ate up twenty men,
two women and a young child;
but as he could not explain the number in English,
he did it by so many stones in a row,
making a sign to me to count them.
This passage I have the rather mentioned,
because it led to things more important and useful for me to know;
for after I had this satisfactory discourse with him,
my next question was,
how far it was from the island to the shore,
and whether the canoes were not often lost in the ocean?
to which he answered,
-there was no danger,
that no canoes were ever lost;
but that after a little way out to the sea,
there was a strong current and a wind always one way in the afternoon-.
This I thought at first to be no more than the sets of the tide,
of going out or coming in;
but I afterwards understood it was occasioned by the great-draught and reflux of the mighty river Oroonoko,
in the mouth or gulf of which I imagined my kingdom lay: and that the land which I perceived to the W. and N.W.
must be the great island Trinidad,
on the north of the river.
A thousand questions (if that would satisfy me) did I ask Friday about the nature of the country,
and what nations were nearest them: To which questions the poor fellow declared all he knew with the greatest openness & utmost sincerity.
When I demanded of him the particular names of the various nations of his sort of people,
he could only answer me in general that they were called -Carrabee-.
Hence it was I considered that these must be the Carribees,
so much taken notice of by our maps to be on that part of America,
which reaches from the mouth of the river Oroonoko to Guiana,
and so on to St. Martha.
Then Friday proceeded to tell me,
-that up a great way beyond the moon-,
as much as to say,
beyond the setting of the moon,
which must be W. from their country,
-there dwelt white-bearded men,
such as I was-,
pointing to my whiskers,
-and that they kill much mans-.
I was not ignorant with what barbarity the Spaniards treated these creatures;
so that I presently concluded it must be them,
whose cruelties had spread throughout America,
to be remembered even to succeeding generations.
you may be sure,
which the imperfect knowledge of my man had led me to,
was very comfortable to me,
and made me so curious as to ask him how I might depart from this island,
& get amongst those white men?
He told me,
I might go in two canoes-.
In two canoes,
what does my man mean?
surely he means one for himself,
and another for me;
and if not,
how must two canoes hold me without being joined,
or one part of my body being put in one,
and another in another?
And indeed it was a long time before I understood his meaning;
that it must be a large boat,
as big as two canoes,
able to bear with the waves,
and not so liable to be overwhelmed as a small one must be.
I believe there is not a state of life but what may be happy,
if people would but endeavour for their part to make it so.
He is not the happiest man that has the most riches;
but he that is content with what he hath.
Before I had my servant,
I thought myself miserable till I had him;
and now that I had enjoyed the happy benefits of him,
I still complained,
and begged a deliverance from a place of retirement,
where Providence had sufficiently blessed me.
In a word,
from this time I entertained some hopes,
that one time or other I might find an opportunity to make my escape from this island,
and that this poor savage might be a great furtherance thereto.
All the time since my man became so intelligent as to understand and speak to me,
I spared no pain nor diligence to instruct him,
according to my poor share of knowledge in the principles of religion,
and the adoration that he ought to pay to the TRUE GOD.
as I very well remember,
I asked him who made him?
At first the innocent creature did not understand what I meant,
but rather thought I asked him who was his father?
upon which I took another way to make him sensible,
by demanding from him an answer to this question.
"who is it that made the sea,
this ground whereon we walk,
and all the hills and woods which we behold?"
I did not miss my intention;
for he told me -it was Old Benamuckee- (the God whom I supposed these savages adored) -who lived a great way beyond all-.
But as to his attributes,
poor Friday was an utter stranger.
He could describe nothing of this great person;
and all that he could say was,
-that he was very old,
much older than the sea and land,
or the stars-.
said I again,
"if this great and old person has made all things in the world,
how comes it to pass,
that all things,
as you in particular,
do not adore and worship him?
upon this looking very grave,
with a perfect sweet look of innocence,
he replied: -Master all things say O to him-,"
by which it may reasonably be supposed he meant adoration.
"do the people of your country go when they die?"
He answered -to Benamuckee-.
and those people that are eaten up,
do they go there?"
me pray to Benamuckee in the canoe,
and Benamuckee would love me when dey eat me all up-.
Such discourses as these had I with my man,
and such made me sensible,
that the true God is worshipped,
tho' under imperfect similitudes;
and that the false adoration which the Heathens give to their imaginary Deity,
is as great an argument of the divine essence,
as the most learned Atheists -(falsely so called)- can bring against it;
for God will be glorified in his works,
let their denominations be what it will;
and I cannot be of that opinion which some conceive,
that God should decree men to be damned for want of a right notion of faith,
in a place where the wisdom of the Almighty has not permitted it to be preached;
and therefore cannot but conclude,
that since obedience is the best sacrifice,
these poor creatures are acting by that light and knowledge which they are possessed of,
may undoubtedly obtain a happy salvation,
though not that enjoyment with Christ,
as his saints,
and martyrs must enjoy.
But laying these determinations aside,
more fit for divines than me to discuss,
I began to instruct my servant in the saving knowledge of the true Deity,
in which the direction of God's Holy Spirit assisted me.
I lifted up my hands to Heaven,
and pointing thereto,
told him "that the great Maker of Heaven and Earth lived there;
that as his infinite power fashioned this world out of a confused chaos,
and made it in that beautiful frame which we behold;
so he governs and preserves it by his unbounded knowledge,
sovereign greatness and peculiar providence;
that he was omnipotent,
could do every thing for us,
give every thing to us,
and take every thing away from us;
that he was a rewarder and punisher of good,
and evil actions;
that there was nothing but what he knew,
no thoughts so secret,
but what he could bring to light;"
I opened his eyes,
and described to him "the manner of the creation of the world,
the situation of paradise,
the transgression of our first parents,
the wickedness of God's peculiar people,
and the universal sins and abominations of the whole earth."
When these things were implanted in his mind,
I told him "that as God's justice was equal to his mercy,
he resolved to destroy this world,
till his Son Jesus Christ interposed in our behalf;
and to procure our redemption,
obtained leave of his heavenly Father to come down from Heaven into the world,
Where he took human nature upon him,
instructed us in our way to eternal life,
and died as a sacrifice for our sins;
that he was now ascended into Heaven,
mediating for our pardon,
delivering our petitions,
and obtaining all those good benefits which we ask in his name,
by humble and hearty prayers,
all which were heard at the throne of Heaven."
As frequently I used to inculcate things into his mind.
Friday one day told me,
-that if our great God could hear us beyond the sun,
he must surely be a greater God than their Benamuckee,
who lived but a little way off,
yet could not hear them till they ascended the great mountains,
where he dwelt to speak to him.-
'What' said I,
did you go thither to speak to him too?'
they never went that were young men,
none but old men,
called their Oowakakee-,
meaning the Indian priests,
-who went to say O,- (so he called saying their prayers) -and they returned back,
and told them what Benamuckee said.- From hence,
I could not but observe how happy we Christians are,
who have God's immediate revelation for our certain guide;
and that our faith is neither misled,
nor our reason imposed upon,
by any set of men,
such as these Indian impostures.
But to clear up this palpable cheat to my man Friday,
I told him,
"that the pretence of their ancient men going up to the mountain to say O to their God -Benamuckee- was an imposture,
and that their bringing back an answer was all a sham,
if not worse;
if there was any such thing spoken to them,
surely it must proceed from an infernal spirit."
And here I thought it necessary to enter into a long discourse with him,
which I did after this manner.
"you must know,
that before the world was made,
there was an Almighty power existing,
by whose power all things were made,
and whose Majesty shall have no end.
To be glorified and adored by beings of a heavenly nature,
he created angels and archangels,
that is glorified spirits resembling himself,
to encompass his throne,
eternally singing forth his praise in the most heavenly sounds and divine harmony.
among this heavenly choir,
Lucifer bore a great sway,
as being then one of the peculiar favourites of these celestial abodes;
contrary to that duty he owed his heavenly Sovereign,
with unbounded ingratitude to his Divine Creator,
not only envied him that adoration which was his due,
but thought to usurp that throne,
which he had neither power to keep,
nor title to pretend to.
He raised a dissention and civil war in Heaven,
and had a number of angels to take his part.
to hope for victory,
and aspire above his powerful Creator!
not fearful of such an enemy,
yet justly provoked at this rebellion,
commissioned his archangel Michael to lead forth the heavenly host,
and give him battle;
the advantage of which was quickly perceived,
by Satan's being overthrown,
and the prince of the air,
for so was the devil called,
with all his fallen angels,
driven headlong into a dismal place,
which is called -Hell-."
The recital of this truth made my man give the greatest attention,
and he expressed a great satisfaction by his gestures,
that God had sent the devil into a deep hole.
And then I desired him to give great heed to what I had further to say.
"was God freed from,
and the Heaven clear of this arch-traitor,
but the Father speaks to the Son and Holy Spirit,
who belonged to his essence,
and were equal to him in power and glory,
-Come let us make man-,
said he -in our own image,
after our own likeness-,
to have dominion over the creatures of the world which we have created.
And these he intended should glorify him in Heaven,
according to their obedience in this state of probation on earth,
as it were,
to be the school to train them up for these heavenly mansions.
Satan seeing himself foiled;
yet that God had taken the power from him as prince of the air,
which power Heaven designed he should retain,
whereby his creatures might be tried;
in revenge for the disgrace he had received,
he tempts Adam's wife,
to taste of the tree of knowledge of good and evil,
which God had forbidden.
He appears to her in the shape of a serpent,
then a most beautiful creature,
and tells her that it was no better than an imposition,
which God had put upon her and her husband not to eat of that fair fruit which he had created;
that the taste thereof would make them immortal like God himself;
and consequently as great and powerful as he.
Upon which she not only eat thereof herself,
but made her husband eat also,
which brought them both under the heavenly displeasure."
Here Friday expressed a great concern: -Ah,
poor mans!- cried he,
make God not love de mans,
made mans like devil himself.-
'God still loved mankind,
and though the devil tempted human nature so far,
he would not suffer him to have an absolute power over them.
I have told you before of his tender love to his people,
disobeyed his commands and rebelled against him;
and even then,
how Jesus Christ,
his only Son,
came to save sinners.
But still every man that lives in the world is under temptation and trial.
The devil has yet a power,
as prince of the air,
to suggest evil cogitations in our minds,
and prompt us on to wicked actions,
that he might glory in our destruction.
Whatever evil thoughts we have,
proceed from him;
so that God in this our distress,
expects we should apply ourselves to him by fervent prayer for speedy redress.
He is not like -Benamuckee,- to let none come near him but -Oowakakee-,
but suffers the people as well as priests to offer themselves at his feet,
thereby to be delivered from the power and temptation of the devil.
But though at first my man Friday expressed some concern at the wickedness of Lucifer,
I found it not so easy to imprint the right notions of him in his mind,
as it was about the divine essence of God;
for there nature assisted me in all my arguments,
to show him plainly the necessity of a great first cause,
of a secret directing Providence,
and of the equity and reasonableness of paying adoration to our Creator: whereas there appeared nothing of all this in the notion of an evil spirit,
of his first beginning,
of his inclination to evil actions,
and his power to tempt us to the like.
And indeed this unlearned -Indian-,
by the mere force of nature,
puzzled me with one particular question,
more than ever I could have expected.
been talking to him of the omnipotent power of God,
and his infinite abhorrence of sin,
insomuch that the Scriptures styled him -a consuming fire- to all the workers of iniquity;
and that it was in his power,
whenever he pleased,
to destroy all the world in a moment,
the greater part of which are continually offending him.
with a serious attention,
he had listened a great while to what I said,
after I had been telling him how the devil was God's enemy in the hearts of men,
and used all his malice and skill to defeat the good designs of Providence,
and destroy the kingdom of Christ in the world,
and so forth: -Very well,
-you say God is so strong,
is he not much strong,
much mightier than the naughty devil?- "To be sure,
"God is more wise and stronger than the serpent: he is above the devil,
which makes us pray to him,
that he would tread down Satan under his feet,
enable us to resist the violent temptations;
and quench his fiery darts."
answered Friday quickly,
as you say,
has much strong,
much might as the devil,
why God no kill devil,
make no more tempt,
no more do wicked.-
You may be certain,
I was strangely surprised at this question of my man's: and,
though an old man,
I was but a young doctor,
and consequently very ill qualified for a causuist,
or a resolver of intricate doubts in religion,
and as it required some time for me to study for an answer,
I pretended not to hear him,
nor to ask him what he said;
to so earnest was he for an answer,
as not to forget his question which he repeated in the very same broken words as above.
When I had recovered myself a little,
"God will at last punish him severely,
being reserved for judgment,
and is to be cast into the bottomless pit,
to remain in fire everlasting."
But all this did not satisfy Friday,
returning upon me,
he repeated my words "RESERVE AT LAST,
-me no understand;
why not kill devil now,
not kill devil,
great while ago-?"
"Friday" said I "you may as well ask me why God does not kill you and me,
by our wicked actions,
we so much offend his divine Majesty?
He gives us time to repent of our sins,
that thereby we may obtain pardon."
At these words -obtain pardon-,
Friday mused a great while;
looking me stedfastly in the face,
-that's very well;
all wicked mans,
God pardon all.-
here I was ran down to the last extremity,
when it became very evident to me;
how mere natural notions will guide reasonable creatures to the knowledge of a Deity,
and to the homage due to the Supreme Being of God;
nothing but divine revelation can form the knowledge of Jesus Christ,
and of a redemption purchased for us,
of the mediator of the new covenant,
and of an intercessor at the footstool of God's throne;
the Gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ;
the word and Spirit of God,
promised for the guide and the sanctifier of his people,
are the most necessary instructors of the souls of men,
in the saving knowledge of the Almighty,
and the means to attain eternal happiness.
And now I found it necessary to put an end to this discourse between my man and me;
for which purpose I rose up hastily,
and made as if I had some occasion to go out,
sending Friday for something that was a good way off,
I then fell on my knees,
and beseeched God that he would inspire me so far as to guide this poor savage in the knowledge of Christ,
to answer his questions more clearly,
that his conscience might be convinced,
his eyes opened,
and his soul saved.
When he returned again,
I entered into a very long discourse with him,
upon the subject of the world's redemption by the Saviour of it,
and the doctrine of repentance preached from heaven,
together with an holy faith of our blessed Redeemer Jesus Christ;
and then I proceeded to explain to him,
according to my weak capacity,
the reason why our Saviour took not on him the nature of angels,
but rather the seed of Abraham;
and how the fallen angels had no benefit by that redemption;
that he came only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel,
and the like.
God knows I had more sincerity than knowledge in all the ways I took for the poor Indian's instruction;
I must acknowledge what I believe,
every body that acts upon the same principle will find,
that in laying heavenly truths open before him,
I informed and instructed myself in many things that either I did not know,
or had not perfectly considered before: so that,
this poor creature might be improved by my instructions,
certain it is,
that I myself had great reason to be thankful to Providence for sending him to me.
His company allayed my grief,
and made my habitation comfortable;
and when I reflected that the solitary life to which I had been so long confined,
had made me to look further towards Heaven,
by making me the instrument under Providence,
to save the life,
and for ought I know,
the soul of this poor savage,
by bringing him to the knowledge of Jesus Christ,
it caused a secret joy to spread through every part of my soul;
and I frequently rejoiced,
that ever I was brought to this place,
which I once thought the most miserable part of the world.
In this thankful frame of mind did I afterwards continue,
while I abode on the island,
and for three years did my man and I live in the greatest enjoyment of happiness.
I believe the savage was as good a Christian as I;
and I hope we were equally penitent;
and such penitents as were comforted and restored by God's Holy Spirit;
for now we had the word of the Lord to instruct us in the right way,
as much as if we had been on the English shore.
By the constant application I made to the Scriptures,
as I read them to my man Friday,
I earnestly endeavoured to make him understand every part of it,
as much as lay in my power.
on the other hand,
by his very serious questions and inquiries,
made me a much better proficient in Scripture knowledge,
than I should have been by my own private reading and study.
I must not omit another thing,
proceeding from the experience I had in my retirement: It was that infinite and inexpressible blessing,
the knowledge of God through Jesus Christ,
which was so plain and easy to be understood,
as immediately to direct me to carry on the great work of sincere repentance for my sins,
and laying hold of a Saviour for eternal life,
to a practical stated reformation,
and obedience to all God's institutions,
without the assistance of a reverend and orthodox divine;
and especially by this same instruction,
so to enlighten this savage creature,
as to make him so good a Christian,
as very few could exceed him.
And there was only this great thing wanting,
that I had no authority to administer the Holy Sacrament,
that heavenly participation of Christ's body and blood;
we rested ourselves content;
that God would accept our desires,
and according to our faith,
have mercy on us.
But what we wanted one way,
was made up in another,
and that was universal peace in our little church.
We had no disputes and wrangling about the nature and equality of the holy,
and undivided Trinity,
no niceties in doctrine,
or schemes of church government;
no sour or morale dissenters to impose more sublimated notions upon us;
no pedant sophisters to confound us with unintelligible mysteries: but,
instead of all this,
we enjoyed the most certain guide to Heaven;
the word of God: besides which,
we had the comfortable views of his Spirit leading us to the truth,
and making us both willing and obedient to the instruction of his word.
As the knowledge and practice of this are the principal means of salvation,
I cannot see what it avails any christian church,
or man in the world,
to amuse himself with speculations and opinions,
except it be to display their particular vanity and affectation.
You may well suppose,
by the frequent discourse we had together,
my man and I became most intimately acquainted,
and that their was but very little that I could say,
but what Friday understood;
he spoke very fluently,
though it was but broken English.
I now took a particular pleasure in relating all my adventures,
especially those that occurred since my being cast on this island.
I made him understand that wonderful mystery,
as he conceived,
of gunpowder and bullet,
and taught him how to shoot.
I also presented to him a knife,
which pleased him exceedingly,
making him a belt,
with a frog hanging thereto,
like those in which we wear hangers in England;
instead of a hanger to put in the frog,
I gave him a hatchet,
which was not only as good,
but even a better weapon upon many occasions.
In a word,
my man thus accoutred,
looked upon himself as great as Don Quixote,
when that celebrated champion went to combat the windmill.
I next gave him a very particular description of the territories of Europe,
and in a particular manner of Old England,
the place of my nativity.
before him the manner of our worshipping God,
our behaviour one to another,
and how we trade in ships to every part of the universe.
I then told him my misfortunes in being shipwrecked,
as near as I could the place where the ship lay,
which had been gone long before;
but I brought him to the ruins of my boat which before my whole strength could not move,
but now was a most rotten,
and fallen to pieces.
I observed my man Friday to view this boat with uncommon curiosity;
when he had done,
he stood pondering a great while,
and said nothing.
what makes you ponder so much?"
me see like boat come to place at my nation-.
It was some time,
before I understood what my man meant;
but examining strictly into it,
I plainly found,
that such another boat resembling mine,
had come up on the country where he dwelt: that is to say,
by his farther explanation,
that the boat was driven there through stress of weather.
It then came into my mind that some European ship having been cast away,
the poor distressed creatures were forced to have recourse to the boat to save their lives;
and being all,
as I thought drowned,
I never concerned my self to ask any thing concerning,
but my only inquiry was about the boat,
and what description my man could give of it.
Indeed Friday answered my demands very well;
making everything very plain to my understanding: but beyond measure was I satisfied,
when he told me with great warmth and ardour.
we save white mans from drown;- upon which I immediately asked him,
If there were any white mans,
as he called them in the boat?
-the boat full,
very full of white mans- "How many,
Hereupon he numbered his fingers,
and counted seventeen.
And when I asked him what became of them all,
and whether they lived or not?
they all live,
they be live among my nation.- This information put fresh thoughts into my head,
that these must be those very men who before I concluded had been swallowed up in the ocean,
after they had left the ship that had struck upon the rocks of my kingdom,
and after escaping the fury of the deep,
landed upon the wild shore,
and committed themselves to the fury of the devouring Indians.
The manner of their cruelties to one another,
as I thought,
must be acted with greater barbarity to strangers,
created in me a great anxiety,
and made me still more curious to ask Friday concerning them.
He told me,
he was sure they still lived there,
having resided among them above four years,
and that the savages gave them victuals to live upon:
"whence proceeded all this good nature and generosity?
How came it to pass that they did not kill and eat them,
to please their devouring appetites,
and occasion to splendid an entertainment among them?"
no,- said Friday,
-they not kilt
they make brothers with
by which I understood there was a truce between them.
And then I had a more favourable opinion of the Indians,
upon Friday uttering these words,
t'other nation no eat man,
but when mans,
make war fight:- as though he had said,
that neither those of his kingdom,
nor any other nations that he knew of,
ever ate their fellow-creatures,
but such as their law of arms allowed to be devoured;
those miserable captives,
whose misfortune it should be to be made prisoners of war.
Some considerable time after,
upon a very pleasant day,
in most serene weather,
my man and I stood upon the top of a hill,
on the east side of the island,
whence I had once before beheld the continent of America.
I could not tell immediately what was the matter,
for suddenly Friday fell a jumping and dancing as if he had been mad,
and upon my demanding the reason of his behaviour,
there see my country,
there my nation,
there live white mans gether-.
And indeed such a rapturous sense of pleasure appeared in his countenance that his eyes had an uncommon sparkling and brightness,
and such a strange eagerness,
as if he had a longing desire to be in his country again.
This made me no so well satisfied with my man Friday as before;
for by this appearance,
I made no dispute,
but that if he could get back thither again,
he would not only be unmindful of what religion I had taught him,
but likewise of the great obligation he owed me for his wonderful deliverance;
that he would not only inform his countrymen of me,
but accompany hundreds of them to my kingdom,
and make me a miserable sacrifice like those unhappy wretches taken in battle.
Indeed I was very much to blame to have those cruel and unjust suspicions,
and must freely own I wronged the poor creature very much,
who was of a quite contrary temper.
And had he had that discerning acuteness which many Europeans have,
he would certainly have perceived my coldness and indifference,
and also have been very much concerned upon that account;
as I was now more circumspect,
I had much lessened my kindness and familiarity with him,
and while this jealousy continued,
I used that artful way (now to much in fashion,
the occasion of strife and dissention) of pumping him daily thereby to discover whether he was deceitful in his thoughts and inclinations;
but certainly he had nothing in him but what was consistent with the best principles,
both as a religious Christian and a grateful friend;
I found every thing he said was ingenuous and innocent,
that I had no room for suspicion,
in spite of all uneasiness,
he not only made me entirely his own again,
but also caused me much to lament that I ever conceived one ill thought of him.
As we were walking up the same hill another day,
when the weather was so hazy at sea,
that I could not perceive the continent,
said I "don't you wish yourself to be in your own country,
among your old friends and acquaintances?"
-Yes,- said he,
-me much O glad to be at my own nation.- "And what would you do there,
Would you turn wild again,
eat man's flesh,
and be a savage as you were formerly."
no,- (answered he,
full of concern and making his head) -Friday now tell them to live good,
tell them pray God,
tell them to eat corn bread,
no eat man again.- "But surely,"
"if you should offer to do all this,
they will kill you;
and to manifest their contempt of such instruction eat you up when they have done."
He then put on a grave,
yet innocent and smooth countenance,
they no kill me,
they willing love learn-: that is that they would be very willing to learn: adding withal,
-that they had learned much of the bearded mans that came in the boat-.
said I "go back again,
He smiled at that,
and told me,
that he could not swim so far.
But said I,
I will make a canoe for you.
Master- said he,
-me go if you go,
me no go if you stay-.
why would you have them to eat me up,
and devour your kind master?"
-me make them not eat master,
and me make them much love you-;
he would tell them how I had slain his enemies,
and thereby saved his life,
for which reason he would make them love me: and then he related to me,
as well as he was able,
how exceedingly kind those his nation were to the white,
or bearded men,
as he called them,
in their great calamity,
were driven into their country.
It was from this time,
I had strong inclinations to venture over,
and use my utmost efforts,
to join these white bearded men,
who undoubtedly were Spaniards or Portuguese;
it must be certainly a better and safer way to escape when there is a good company,
than for me alone,
from an island forty miles off the shore,
and without any assistance.
Friday and I being at work,
at the same time diverting ourselves with various discourses;
I told him I had a boat which I would bestow upon him,
whenever he pleased to return to his own nation;
and to convince him of the truth of what I said,
I took him with me to the other side of the island,
where my frigate lay,
and then taking it from under the water,
(for I always kept it sunk for fear of a discovery) we went both into it to see how it would manage such an expedition.
And really never could any be more dexterous in rowing than my faithful servant,
making the boat go as fast again as I could.
"shall we now go to your so much admired nation."
But instead of meeting with that cheerfulness I expected,
he looked very dull and melancholy at my saying so;
which indeed at first surprised me,
till he made me sensible,
that his concern was about the boat's being too small to go so far a voyage.
Upon which I let him understand I had a much bigger;
the next day went to the place where the first boat lay,
which I had made,
when all the strength I had or art I could use failed me in my attempt to get it into the water: but now it having lain in the sun two and twenty years,
and no care being taken of it all that while,
it became in a manner rotten.
My man told me,
that such a boat would do very well for the purpose,
sufficient to carry -enough vittle,
for that was his manner of talking.
my mind being strongly fixed upon my design of going over with him to the Continent,
I very plainly told him that we would both go and make a boat full as big,
and more proportionable than that,
wherein he might safely return to his own nation.
These words made Friday look so very pensive that I thought he would have fallen at my feet.
It was some time before he could speak a word,
which made me ask him,
what was the matter with him?
He replied in a very soft and moving tone,
-What has poor Friday done?
why are you angry mad with poor servant?
What me done,
O what me done?- "Friday,"
"you never yet have offended me,
what makes you think I am angry with you,
when I am not angry at all."
-You no angry,
no angry,- said he several times,
-if you be no angry,
why den send Friday over great water to my own nation?- "Why from a mountain you beheld the place where you was born,
and is it not to satisfy your desires that I am willing to give you leave to return thither?"
-me wish to be there sure enough,
but then me with master there too: no wish Friday there,
no master there.- In short,
he could not endure the thoughts of going there without me.
"I go there!
"what shall I do there?"
He answered very quickly,
-O master you do great deal much good,
you teach all de wild mans to be good tame mans: you learn dem to be sober,
life good live,
to know God,
and pray God.- "Alas!
"what can I do against their priests of -Benamuckee-,
or indeed what good can I make your nation sensible of,
when I myself am but a poor ignorant man?"
master,- said he,
-you be no ignorant,
you teachee me good,
you teachee dem good.- "You shall go without me,
"for I don't care to accompany you thither;
I would rather live in this solitude than venture among such inhuman savages.
-Go your way since you desire it,
and leave me alone by myself as I was before I saved your life-."
Never was any creature more thunderstruck than Friday was at these words.
-Go me away,
leave master away,
(said he after a long silence,) no,
Friday live not master gone-,
as though he had said,
I neither can nor will live,
if my master sends me from him.
And here I cannot but take notice of the strong ties of friendship,
which many times surpass those of consanguinity: For often we find a great disagreement among kindred;
and when there is any seeming regard for each other,
it is very seldom true,
and scarce ever lasting,
if powerful interest does not bear the sway;
and that alone is often the occasion of the greatest hatred in the world,
which is to desire the death of parents and relations,
for the sake of acquiring their fortunes.
But there was no such thing between my servant and me;
instead of which there was the greatest gratitude and the most sincere love;
he found me not only his deliverer,
but his preserver and comforter;
not a severe and cruel tyrant,
but a kind,
and affable friend.
He wanted for no manner of sustenance;
and when he was ill or out of order,
I was his physician,
not only for his body but his soul;
and therefore no wonder was it,
that such an innocent creature long since divested of his former natural cruelty,
should have an uncommon concern at so cruel a seperation from me,
which pierced him to the very soul,
and made him desire even to die,
rather than live without me..
After I had told Friday,
in a very careless manner,
that he should be at his liberty as soon as the boat was made,
the language of his eyes expressed all imaginable confusion;
immediately running to one of his hatchets,
which he used to wear as a defensive weapon,
he gives it into my hand,
with a heart so full,
that he could scarcely speak.
'what is it you mean?
What must I do with this?'
-Only kill Friday-,
-Friday care not live long.-'
'But what must I kill you for?
replied I again,
what made you Friday save from eat a me up,
so keep long Friday,
make Friday love God,
and love not Benamuckee,
and now Friday send away;
never see Friday more.- As though the poor creature had said,
my dearest kind master,
how comes it to pass,
that after having ventured your precious life to save me from the jaws of devouring cannibals,
after such a tender regard to provide for me such a comfortable nourishment,
and continuing so long a kind master,
and a most sincere friend;
and after making me forsake the false notion of an Indian Deity,
and worship the true God in spirit and in truth;
and after all this how comes it now,
that you are willing to send me away to my former course of living,
by which means undoubtedly we shall be dead to each other;
but greater must be my misfortune,
that I shall never behold my best friend I have in the world any more.
And this undoubtedly,
though he could not express himself so clearly,
must be his sentiments;
for the tears ran down his cheeks in such a plentiful manner,
that I had much ado to refrain from weeping also,
when I beheld the poor creature's affection;
so that I was forced to comfort him in the best manner I could,
which I did,
by telling him,
if he was content to abide with me,
I should be ever willing to keep him.
After Friday's grief was something abated,
more fully to convince me of his affection,
me not care to be in my nation,
leave you here;
me desire nation learn good,
that's all;- meaning,
that his desire was for the conversion of that barbarous people.
But as I had no apostolic mission,
nor any concern about their salvation;
so I had not the least intention or desire of undertaking it;
and the strength of my inclination,
in order to escape,
proceeded chiefly from my late discourse with Friday,
about these seventeen white bearded men,
that had been driven upon the Barbarian coast;
whom I designed to join,
as the only means to further our escape.
To which intent my man and I went to search for a proper tree to fell,
whereof we might make a large perigua or canoe,
to undertake the voyage;
we were not long in finding one fit for our purpose,
there being enough of wood in the island to have built a fleet of large vessels,
but the thing we principally wanted was to get one so near the water,
that we might launch it after it was finished,
and not commit so horrid a mistake as I had once done before.
after a great search for what was best and most convenient,
whose judgment in such affairs was much superior to mine,
pitches upon a kind of wood the most fitting for it.
To this day I cannot tell the name of the tree,
nor describe it any other way,
than only by saying,
that it is like what we call -fustic-,
or between that and the Niacaragua wood,
being much of the same colour and smell.
But though my man exceeded me in the knowledge of the most proper tree,
yet I shewed him a much better and clearer way to make a canoe than ever he knew before;
for he was for burning the hollow or cavity of the tree,
in order to make this boat;
but I then told him how he might do it with tools,
learning him at the same time how to use them,
which indeed he did very dexterously;
so that in a month's time we finished it,
making it very handsome,
by cutting the outside in the true shape of a boat.
After this it took us a full fortnight before we could get her into the water,
which we did as it were inch by inch,
upon great rollers;
but when she was in,
she would have carried twenty men,
with all the ease imaginable.
As I was very well pleased,
you may be sure at the launching of this man of war of mine,
I was no less amazed to behold with what dexterity my man would manage her,
and paddle her along.
'what do you think of it now?
Do you think this will carry us over?
-me venture over well,
though great blow wind-.
But my design was yet farther,
which he was insensible of;
and that was to make a mast and a sail,
and to provide her with an anchor and cable.
As to a mast,
that was no difficult thing at all to procure: so I fixed upon a strait young cedar-tree;
which I found near the place,
great plenty of it abounding in the island;
and setting Friday to cut it down,
I gave him particular directions how to shape and order it;
but as to the sail,
that I managed myself.
I very well knew I had some old ones,
or pieces of sails enough,
which had lain six and twenty years by me;
but not being careful to preserve them,
as thinking I should have no occasion to use them any more,
when I came to overlook them I found them almost all rotten,
and with these I went to work,
and after a great deal of pains and aukward tedious stitching for want of needles,
at length I finished a three-cornered ugly thing,
like those which our long boats use,
and which I very well knew how to manage,
especially since it was like that which I had in my patron's fishing boat,
with my boy Xury,
I made my escape from the Barbarian shore.
It was near two months,
before I completed this work,
the rigging and fitting my mast and sails;
and indeed they were nicely done,
having made a small stay and a sail,
or a foresail to it,
if we should turn to the westward;
and what is still more,
I fixed a rudder to the stern of her,
to steer with;
and though I was but a very indifferent shipwright,
as I was sensible of the great usefulness and absolute necessity of a thing like this,
I applied myself to it with such a confident application,
that at last I accomplished my design;
but what with the many dull contrivances I had about it,
and the failure of many things,
it cost me as much pains in ordering as in making the boat.
Besides when all this was done,
I had my man to teach what belonged to its navigation;
for though he very well understood how to paddle a canoe along,
he was an utter stranger to a sail and a rudder,
and was amazed when he saw me work the boat to and again in the sea,
and how the sail gibbed and filled this way or that way,
as the course we sailed changed.
After some time and a little use,
I made all these things very familiar to him,
so that he became an expert sailor,
except in relation to the compass,
and that I could make him understand but little of.
as it happened,
there was seldom occasion for it,
there being but little cloudy weather,
and scarce any fog in those parts;
the stars were always visible in the night,
and the shore perspicuous by day,
except in the rainy season,
which confined every one to his habitation.
Thus entered in the seven and twentieth year of my reign,
which you please,
(the last three of which blessed with the company of my man Friday,
ought not to be reckoned) I kept the anniversary of my landing here with the same thankfulness to God,
for his tender mercies,
as I did before;
as I had great cause for a thankful acknowledgement for my deliverance at first,
I had much greater now for such singular and additional testimonies of the care of Providence over me,
in all my distress of both body and mind,
and the great hopes I had of being effectually and speedily delivered;
for I had a strong impression upon my mind,
that I should not be another year in this island.
I still continued on with my husbandry,
gathering and curing my grapes,
and doing all other things that were necessary.
And now the rainy season beginning to come on,
obliged me to keep the longer within doors;
but before this I brought my new vessel into the creek,
where I had landed my rafts from the ship,
and haling her up to the shore,
I ordered my man Friday to dig a dock sufficient to hold her in,
and deep enough to give her water,
wherein she might float;
and then when the tide was out,
we made a strong dam cross the end of it,
to keep out the water;
by which means she lay dry,
as to the tide from the sea;
and to keep the rain from her,
we thatched her over,
as it were,
with boughs of trees,
like a house,
so we waited for the months of November and December,
in which I designed to venture over the ocean.
No sooner did the seasonable weather begin to draw near,
but so much was I elevated with this new designed adventure,
that I daily prepared for the voyage.
The first thing I thought on was,
to lay by a certain quantity of provisions,
as a sufficient store for such an expedition,
intending in a week or fortnight's time to open the dock,
and to launch out the boat for that purpose.
But one morning as I was very busy upon something necessary for this occasion,
I called Friday to me,
and bid him go to the seashore,
and see if he could find a turtle or tortoise,
a thing which we commonly had once a week,
as much upon account of the eggs,
as for the sake of the flesh.
He had not been long gone,
but he came running back,
as though he was pursued for life,
and as if it were flew over my outer-wall,
like one that felt not the ground,
or steps he set his feet on;
and before I had time to enquire the reason of this precipitation,
he cries out,
-O dear master,
what's the matter Friday,'
yonder!- said he;
-there be one,
or three canoes!
two three!- Surely,
there must be six,
by my man's way of reckoning;
but on a stricter inquiry,
I found there were but three.
'don't be terrified,
I warrant you we will not only defend ourselves against them,
but kill the most of these cruel savages.'
But though I comforted him in the best manner I could,
the poor creature trembled so,
that I scarce knew what to do with him: ---O master-,
-they come look Friday,
cut pieces Friday,
cut a me up-.
'they will eat me up as well as you,
and my danger is as great as yours.
But since it is so,
we must resolve to fight for our lives.
What say you?
Can you fight Friday?
very faintly) me shoot,
me kill what I can,
but there come a great many number.-'That's no matter,'
said I again,
'our guns will terrify those that we do not kill: I am very willing to stand by you to the last drop of my blood.
Now tell me if you will do the like by me,
obey my orders in whatsoever I command?'
Friday then answered,
me loses life for you,
me die when you bid die.- Thus concluding all questions concerning his fidelity,
immediately I fetched him a good dram of rum,
(of which I had been a very good husband) and gave it him to comfort his heart.
After he had drank it,
I ordered him to take the two-fowling pieces,
which we always carried,
and load them with large swan-shot,
as big as small pistol bullets;
then I took four muskets,
and loaded them with two slugs and five small bullets each;
charging my two pistols each with a brace;
I hung my great sword,
naked to my side,
and gave Friday his hatchet,
as a most excellent weapon for defence.
I thought as well of myself,
as any knight errant that ever handled a sword and spear.
I took my perspective glass and went up to the side of the hill,
to see what I could discover;
and I perceived very soon,
by my glass,
that there were one and twenty savages,
and three canoes,
and that their chief concern seemed to be the triumphant banquet upon the three poor human bodies,
a thing which by this time I had observed was very common with them.
I also remarked,
that they did not land at that place from whence Friday made his escape,
but nearer to the creek,
where the shore was low,
and where a thick wood came very close to the sea.
My soul was then filled with indignation and abhorrence at such inhuman wretches,
which put a period to all my former thoughts in their vindication,
neither would I give myself time to consider their right of conquest,
as I had done before: but descending from the mountain,
I came down to Friday,
and told him,
I was resolved to go speedily to them,
and kill them all;
asking him again in the same breath,
if he would stand by me;
when by this time being recovered from his fright,
and his spirits much cheered with the dram I had given him,
he was very pleasant,
yet seriously telling me,
as he did before,
-When I bid die,
he would die-.
And now it was,
having fixed my resolution in so strong a manner,
that nothing could divest my breast of its uncommon fury.
I immediately divided the loaded arms betwixt us.
To my man Friday I gave a pistol to stick in his girdle,
with three guns upon his shoulder,
a weight too great,
to bear but what must a poor king do,
who has but one soldier in the world?
But to show I made him bear no more than what I would lay on myself,
I stuck the other pistol in my girdle,
and the other three guns upon my shoulders;
but that was like Aesop's burden,
a small bottle of rum,
which was soon lightened to our exceeding refreshment.
Thus we marched out,
under a ponderous load of armour,
like two invincible champions,
with a quantity of powder and bullets to stand our battle,
and load again,
when the pieces were discharged.
And now my orders being to be obeyed,
I charged Friday to keep close behind me,
and not to stir,
or attempt anything till I commanded him;
and in the interim,
not to speak so much as one word.
It was in this order I fetched a compass to the right hand,
of near a mile,
as well to get over the creek,
as to attain the wood;
and by this,
I thought to come within shot of them before I could be discerned,
as I found by my glass,
would not be difficult to accomplish.
But how fickle and wavering is the mind of man,
even in our greatest fury and strongest inclinations.
For while I was taking this march,
my resolution began to abate,
not through fear of their numbers,
who were a parcel of naked unarmed wretches,
but those reflections occurred to my thoughts: -what power was I commissioned with,
or what occasion or necessity had I to go and imbrue my hands in human blood,
and murder people that had neither done nor intended to do me any wrong?
They were innocent in particular as to me: and their barbarous custom was not only their misfortune but a sign that God had left them in the most immense stupidity;
but yet did not warrant me to be a judge of their actions,
much less an executioner of his righteous judgments?
on the contrary,
whenever he thought fit,
he would take vengeance on them himself,
and punish them in a national way,
according to their national crimes;
but this was nothing at all to me,
who had no concern with them.
Indeed my man Friday might justify himself,
because they were his declared enemies,
of that very same nation that went to sacrifice him before;
and indeed it was lawful for him to attack them,
which I could not say was so with respect to me,- --So warmly did these things press upon my thoughts all the way I went,
that I only resolved to place myself so as to behold their bloody entertainment,
without falling upon them,
except something more than ordinary,
by God's special direction,
should oblige me thereto.
Thus fixed in my resolution,
I entered into the thick wood,
(my man Friday following me close behind) when with all possible wariness and silence,
I marched till I came close to the skirt of it,
on that side which was the nearest to them;
for only one end of the wood interposed between me and them.
Upon which I called very softly to Friday,
and shewing him a great tree,
that was just at the corner of the wood,
I ordered him to repair thither,
and bring me word,
if he could plainly perceive their actions;
accordingly he did as I commanded him,
and came back with this melancholy story,
-that they were all about their fire,
eating the flesh of one of their prisoners;
and that another lay bound upon the sands at a little distance from them,
which they designed for the next sacrifice,
he told me was not one of their nation,
but one of those very bearded men,
who were driven by a storm into their country,
and of whom he had so often talked to me about- --You may be sure,
that upon hearing this,
my soul was ready to sink within me: when ascending into a tree,
I saw plainly,
by my glass,
a white man,
who lay upon the beach of the sea,
with his hands and feet tied with flags,
or things resembling rushes,
being covered with clothes,
and seemed to be an European.
From the tree where I took this prospect I perceived another tree and a thicket beyond it,
about fifty yards nearer to them than where I was,
by taking a small circle round,
I might come at undiscovered,
& then I should be within half a shot of these devourers.
And this consideration alone,
to be more perfectly revenged upon them,
made me withhold my passion,
though I was enraged to the highest degree imaginable;
when going back about twenty paces I got behind some bushes,
which held all the way till I came to the other tree;
and then I ascended to a little rising ground,
not above eighteen yards distance,
and there I had a full view of these creatures,
and I could perceive all their actions.
Such a fight did then appear,
as obliged me not to lose a moment's time.
No less than nineteen of these dreadful wretches sat upon the ground,
close huddled together,
expressing all the delight imaginable at so barbarous an entertainment;
and they had just sent the other two to murder this poor unhappy Christian,
and bring him limb by limb to their fire;
for they were then just going to untie the bands from his feet,
in order for death,
as fetters are knocked off the feet of malefactors before they go to the place of execution.
immediately turning to my man,
Friday' said I
'mind what I say,
fail in nothing,
but do exactly as you see me do'.
All which he promising --he would perform,
I let down one of my muskets,
and fowling-piece upon the ground,
and Friday did the same by his;
and with the other musket I took my aim at the savages,
bidding him do the like:
'Are you ready' said I: -Yes,
Master,- said he;
'why then fire at them,'
and that very moment I gave fire likewise.
I only killed one and wounded two;
but my man Friday,
taking his aim much better than I,
killed two and wounded three.
You may be sure they were in a dreadful consternation,
such an unexpected disaster,
and those who had yet escaped our penetrating shot,
immediately jumped upon their feet,
but were in such a confusion,
that they knew not which way to run or look;
not knowing from whence their destruction came.
We threw down our pieces,
and took up others,
giving a second dreadful volley;
but as they were loaded only with swan shot,
or small pistol bullets,
we perceived only two of them fall;
tho many were wounded,
who run yelling and screaming about like mad creatures.
'lay down your piece,
and take up the musket,
and follow me.'
He did so,
with great courage,
when showing ourselves to the savages we give a great shout,
and made directly to the poor victim,
who would have been sacrificed,
had not our first fire obliged the butchers,
with three others,
to jump into a canoe.
By my order,
Friday fired at them,
at which shot I thought he had killed them all,
by reason of their falling to the bottom of the boat;
he killed two,
and mortally wounded a third.
In the mean time,
I cut the flags that tied the hands and feet of the poor creature,
and lifting him up asked him in the Portuguese tongue,
-What he was?- He answered me in Latin,
-Christiantis;- but so very weak and faint,
that he could scarce stand or speak.
Immediately I gave him a dram;
and a piece of bread to cherish him,
and asked him,
What countryman he was?
-Hispaniola;- and then uttered all the thankfulness imaginable for his deliverance.
with as much Spanish as I was master of,
'let us talk afterwards,
but fight now;
take this sword and pistol,
and do what you can.'
he did so with much courage and intrepidity,
that he cut two of them to pieces in an instant,
the savages not having the power to fly for their lives.
I ordered Friday to run for those pieces we had left at the tree,
which he brought me with great swiftness,
and then I gave him my musket,
while I loaded the rest.
But now their happened a fierce encounter between the Spaniard & one of the savages who had made at him with one of their wooden swords;
and though the former was as brave as could be expected,
having twice wounded his enemy in the head,
yet being weak & faint,
the Indian had thrown him upon the ground,
& was wrestling my sword out of his hand,
which the Spaniard very wisely quiting,
drew out his pistol,
and shot him through the body before I could come near him,
though I was running to his assistance.'
As to Friday,
he pursued the flying wretches with his hatchet,
but the rest were too nimble for him.
The Spaniard taking one of the fowling pieces,
who running into the wood Friday pursued and killed;
but the other,
notwithstanding his wounds,
plunged himself into the sea & swam to those who were left in the canoe;
with one wounded,
were all that escaped out of one and twenty.
The account is as follows.
-Killed at first shot from the tree .....
3 At the second shot ... ... ... ... ... ... ....
2 By Friday in the boat ... ... ... ... ... ....
2 Ditto of those first wounded ... ... ... ...
2 Ditto in the wood ... ... ... ... ... ... .....
1 By the Spaniard ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ....
3 Killed or died of their wounds ... ... ....
4 Escaped in the boat,
whereof one wounded,
if not slain- ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ....
4 -- -- -- -- Total 21 -- -- -- --
The savages in the canoe worked very hard to get out of our reach,
and Friday was as eager in pursuing them;
and indeed I was no less anxious about their escape,
lest after the news had been carried to their people,
they should return in multitudes and destroy us.
So being resolved to pursue them,
I jumped into one of the canoes and bid Friday follow me;
but no sooner was I in,
than to my surprise,
I found another poor creature bound hand and foot for the slaughter,
just as the Spaniard had been,
with very little life in him.
Immediately I unbound him,
and would have helped him up;
but he could neither stand nor speak,
but groaned so piteously,
as thinking he was only unbound in order to be slain.
Hereupon I bid Friday speak to him,
and tell him of his deliverance;
when pulling out my bottle I made the poor wretch drink a dram;
with the joyful news he had received,
so revived his heart that he sat up in the boat.
As soon as Friday began to hear him speak,
and look more fully in his face,
it would have moved any one to tears to perceive his uncommon transports of joy;
for he kissed,
then cried again,
wrung his hands,
beat his face and head,
then sung and jumped about again,
like a distracted creature;
so that it was a great while before I could make him speak to me,
or tell me what was the matter with him;
but when he came to the liberty of his speech at last,
he told me it was his father.
Here indeed I was infinitely moved to see that dutiful and tender affection this poor savage had to his aged parent.
He would sit down by him in the boat,
open his breast and hold his father's head close to his bosom half an hour together to cherish him: then he took his arms & ankles,
which were stiff and numbed with binding,
and chaffed and rubbed them with his hands;
by which means perceiving what the case was,
I gave him some rum,
which proved of great benefit to him.
While we were busy in this action the savages had gotten almost out of sight;
and happy it was we did not pursue them: For there arose from the north-west,
which continued all night long,
such a violent storm that I could not suppose otherwise but that they were all drowned.
After this I called Friday to me,
and asked him if he had given his father any bread?
He shook his head and said,
not one bit,
me eat-a up all;- so I gave him a cake of bread out of a little pouch I carried for this end.
I likewise gave him a dram for himself,
& two or three bunches of raisins for his father.
Both these he carried to him,
for he would make him drink the dram to comfort him.
Away then he runs out of the boat as if he was bewitched,
with such an extraordinary swiftness,
that he was out of sight as it were in an instant;
but at his return I perceived him slacken his pace,
because he had something in his hand.
And this I found to be as he approached nearer,
an earthen jug with some water for his father,
with two more cakes of bread,
which he delivered into my hands.
Being very thirsty myself I drank some of the water,
of which his father had drank sufficiently,
it more revived his spirits than all the rum I had given him.
I then called Friday to me and ordered him to carry the Spaniard one of the cakes and some water,
who was reposing himself under a green place under the shade of a tree,
but so weak,
that though he exerted himself he could not stand upon his feet.
Upon which I ordered Friday to rub and bathe his ankles with rum as he did his father's.
But every minute he was employed in this he would cast a wishful eye towards the boat,
where he left his father sitting;
who suddenly disappearing he flew like lightning to him,
and finding he had only laid himself down to ease his limbs,
he returned back to me presently;
and then I spoke to the Spaniard to let Friday help him and lead him to the boat,
in order to be conveyed to my dwelling where I would take care of him.
Upon which Friday took him upon his back and so carried him to the canoe,
setting him close by his father;
and presently stepping out again,
launched the boat off and paddled it along the shore faster than I could walk,
though the wind blew very hard too,
and having brought them safe to the creek,
away he runs to fetch the other canoe,
which he brought to the creek almost as soon as I got to it by land,
when wafting me over,
he took our new guests out of the boat;
but so weak were they that I was forced to make a kind of a hand-barrow;
and when I came to my castle,
not being willing to make an entrance into my wall,
we made them a handsome tent covered with old sails and boughs of trees,
making two good beds of rice straw,
with blankets to lie upon and cover them.
Thus like an absolute king over subjects who owed their lives to me,
I thought myself very considerable,
especially as I had now three religions in my kingdom,
my man Friday being a Protestant,
his father a Pagan,
and the Spaniard a Papist: but I gave liberty of conscience to them all.
To get provisions for my poor weak subjects,
I ordered Friday to kill me a yearling goat;
which when he had done I cut off the hinder quarters,
and chopping it into small pieces,
boiled and stewed it,
putting barley and rice into the broth.
This I carried into their tent,
set a table,
dined with them myself and encouraged them.
Friday was my interpreter to his father,
and indeed to the Spaniard too,
who spoke the language of the savages pretty well.
After dinner I ordered Friday to fetch home all our arms from the field of battle,
and the next day to bury the dead bodies,
which he did accordingly.
And now I made Friday inquire of his father,
whether he thought these savages had escaped the late storm in their canoe?
and if so,
whether they would not return with a power too great for us to resist?
-that he thought it impossible they could outlive the storm;
if they were driven southwardly,
they would come to a land where they would as certainly be devoured,
as if they were drowned in the sea.
And suppose they had attained their own country,
the strangeness of their fatal and bloody attack,
would make them tell their people,
that the rest of them were killed by thunder and lightning,
not by the hand of man,
but by two heavenly spirits- (meaning Friday and me) -who were sent from above to destroy them.
-he knew because he heard them say the same to one another-.
And indeed he was in the right on't;
for I have heard since,
that these four men gave out that whoever went to that inchanted island,
would be destroyed by fire from the gods.
No canoes appearing soon after,
as I expected,
my apprehensions ceased: instead of which my former thoughts of a voyage took place,
especially when Friday's father assured me,
I should have good usage in his nation.
As to the Spaniard,
he told me,
that sixteen more of his countrymen and Portuguese,
who had been shipwrecked,
made their escape thither;
that though they were in union with the savages,
yet they were very miserable for want of provisions and other necessaries.
When I asked him about the particulars of his voyage,
he answered that their ship was bound from the Rio de la Plata to the Havannah;
that when the ship was lost,
only five men perished in the ocean;
the rest having saved themselves in the boat,
were now landed on the main continent.
'And what do they intend to do there?'
they have concerted measures to escape,
by building a vessel,
but that they had neither tools nor provisions,
for that all their designs came to nothing.
I should make a proposal,
and invite them here,
would they not carry me prisoner to New Spain?'
he answered no;
for he knew them to be such honest men,
as would scorn to act such inhuman baseness to their deliverer: That,
if I pleased,
he and the old savage would go over to them,
talk with them about it,
and bring me an answer: That they should all swear fidelity to me as their leader,
upon the Holy Sacrament;
and for his,
part he would not only do the same,
but stand to the last drop of his blood should there be occasion.
These solemn assurances made me resolve to grant them relief,
and to send these two over for that purpose;
but when every thing was ready,
the Spaniard raised an objection,
which carried a great deal of weight in it: -You know,
that having been some time with you,
I cannot but be sensible of your stock of rice and corn,
perhaps for us at present,
but not for them,
should they come over presently;
much less to victual a vessel for an intended voyage.
Want might be as great an occasion for them to disagree and rebel,
as the children of Israel did against God himself,
when they wanted to break bread in the wilderness.
my advice is to await another harvest and in the mean time cultivate and improve more land,
whereby we may have plenty of provisions in order to execute our design-.
This advice of the Spaniard's I approved extremely;
and so satisfied was I of his fidelity that I esteemed him ever after.
And thus we all four went to work upon some more land,
and against seed time we had gotten so much cured and trimmed up sufficient to sow twenty-two bushels of barley on,
and sixteen jars of rice,
which was in short all the feed we had to spare.
As we were four in number and by this time all in good health,
we feared not a hundred Indians should they venture to attack us;
and while the corn was growing,
I pitched upon some trees,
fit to build us a large vessel in case the Spaniards came over;
which being marked,
I ordered Friday and his father to cut them down,
appointing the Spaniard,
who was now my privy counsellor,
to oversee and direct the work.
I likewise increased my flocks of goats by shooting the wild dams and bringing home their kids to my inclosure.
Nor did I neglect the grape season,
but cured them as usual,
though I had such a quantity now as would have filled eighty barrels with raisins.
And thus all of us being employed,
they in working,
and I in providing for them till harvest came,
God Almighty blessed the increase of it so much,
that from twenty-two barrels of barley we thrashed out two hundred and twenty,
and the like quantity of rice;
sufficient to victual a ship fit to carry me and all the Spaniards to any part of America.
Thus the principal objection being answered,
by a sufficient stock of provisions,
I sent my two ambassadors over to the main land,
with a regal authority to administer the oaths of allegiance and fidelity,
and have an instrument signed under their hands,
though I never asked whether they had pen,
when giving each of them a musket,
eight charges of powder and ball,
and provisions enough for eight days,
they sailed away with a fair gale on a day when the moon was at full.
Scarce a fortnight had passed over my head,
but impatient for their return,
I laid me down to sleep one morning,
when a strange accident happened,
which was ushered in by Friday's coming running to me,
and calling aloud,
they are come,
they are come.- Upon which,
not dreaming of any danger,
out I jumped from my bed,
put on my clothes and hurried through my little grove;
when looking towards the sea,
I perceived a boat about a league and a half distant,
standing in for the shore with the wind fair.
I beheld they did not come from the side where the land lay on,
but from the southerhmost end of the island: So these being none of the people we wanted,
I ordered Friday to lie still,
till such time as I came down from the mountain,
with my ladder,
I now ascended in order to discover more fully what they were;
with the help of my perspective glass,
I plainly perceived an English ship,
which I concluded it to be;
by the fashion of its long boat;
and which filled me with such uncommon transports of joy,
that I cannot tell how to describe;
and yet some secret doubts hang about me,
proceeding from I know not what cause,
as though I had reason to be upon my guard.
I would have no man contemn the secret hints and intimations of danger,
which very often are given,
when he may imagine there is no possibility of its being real;
for had I not been warned by this silent admonition,
I had been in a worse situation than before,
and perhaps inevitably ruined.
Not long it was,
before I perceived the boat to approach the shore,
as though they looked for a place where they might conveniently land;
and at last they ran their boat on shore upon the beach,
about half a mile distance;
which proved so much the happier for me,
had they come into the creek,
they had landed just at my door,
and might not only have forced me out of my castle,
but plundered me of all I had in the world.
Now I was fully convinced they were all Englishmen,
three of which were unarmed and bound;
when immediately the first four or five leaped on shore,
and took those three out of the boat as prisoners;
one of whom I could perceive used the most passionate gestures of entreaty,
while the others in a lesser degree,
showed abundance of concern.
Not knowing the meaning of this,
I was very much astonished,
and I beckoned to Friday,
who was below,
to ascend the mountain,
and likewise view this sight.
said he to me,
-you see English mans eat prisoners as well as Savage mans-.
'And do you think they will eat them Friday?'
-they eat all up-.
I am much more concerned lest they murder them,
but as for eating them up,
that I am sure they will never do.'
And now I not only lamented my misfortune in not having the Spaniard and Savage with me,
but also that I could not come within shot of them unperceived,
they having no fire arms among them,
and save these three me,
whom I thought they were going to kill with their swords.
But some comfort it was to me,
that I perceived they were set at liberty to go where they pleased,
the rascally seamen scattering about as though they had a mind to see the place;
and so long did they negligently ramble,
that the tide had ebbed so low,
as to leave the boat aground.
Nor were the two men who were in her more circumspect;
for having drunk a little too much liquor,
they fell fast asleep;
but one of them waking before the other,
and perceiving the boat too fast aground for his strength to move it,
he hallooed out to the rest,
who made all possible expedition to come to him;
but as Providence ordered it,
all their force was ineffectual to launch her,
when I could hear them speak to one another,
-Why let her alone,
she'll float next tide-;
by which words I was fully convinced they were my own countrymen.
I all this while lay very quiet,
as being fully sensible it could be no less than ten hours before the boat would be afloat,
and then it would be so dark,
that they could not easily perceive me,
by which means I should be at more liberty to hear their talk,
and observe all their motions: not but that I prepared for my defence: yet,
as I had another sort of enemy to combat with I acted with more caution.
I took two fusees on my shoulder,
and gave Friday three muskets;
besides my formidable goat-skin coat and monstrous cap made me look as fierce and terrible as Hercules of old,
especially when two pistols were stuck in my belt,
and my naked sword hanging by my side.
It was my design at first not to make any attempt till it was dark;
and it being now two o'clock,
in the very heat of the day,
the sailors were all straggling in the woods,
and undoubtedly were lain down to sleep.
The three poor distressed creatures,
too anxious to get any repose,
were however seated under the shade of a great tree,
about a quarter of a mile from me.
without any more ado,
I approached towards them,
with my man following behind me,
and before I was perceived,
I called aloud to them in Spanish,
-What are ye,
At these words,
they started up in great confusion,
when they beheld the strange figure I made;
they returned no answer,
but seemed as if they would fly from me:
'don't be afraid,
perhaps you have a friend nearer than you expect.'
-He must be from Heaven-,
said one of them,
gravely pulling off his hat,
-for we are past all help in this world.-
'All help is from Heaven,'
as I have perceived every action between you and these brutes since your landing only inform me,
how to assist you,
and I will do it to the utmost of my power.'
-Am I talking with God or man-,
in melting tears.
-Are you of human kind or an angel-?
'my poor habit will tell you I am a man,
and an Englishman,
willing to assist you,
having but this servant only: here are arms and ammunition: tell freely your condition: Can we save you?'
-is too long to relate,
since our butchers are so near: but,
I was master of that ship,
my men have mutinied,
and it is a favour they have put my mate,
on shore without murdering us,
though we expect nothing but perishing here-.
'Are your enemies gone?'
pointing to a thicket,
-there they lie,
while my heart trembles,
lest having seen and heard us they should murder us all.-
'Have they fire arms?'
-They have but two pieces-,
-one of which is left in the boat.- He also told me there were two enormous villains among them,
that were the authors of this mutiny,
if they were killed or seized,
might induce the rest to return to their obedience.
'let us retire farther under the covering of the woods;'
and there it was I made these conditions with him:
[Illustration: R. Crusoe accosting the Captain,
set ashore by the Mutineers.]
while they staid in the island,
they should not pretend to any authority;
but should entirely conform to my orders,
and return me the arms which I should put in their hands.
if the ship was recovered,
they should afford Friday and myself a passage -gratis- to England.
When he had given me all the satisfaction I could desire,
I gave him and his two companions each of them a gun,
with powder and ball sufficient,
advising them to fire upon them as they lay sleeping.
The Captain modestly said,
that he was sorry to kill them;
on the other hand,
to let these villains escape,
who were the authors of his misery,
might be the ruin of us all.
-Well,- said he,
-do as you think fit;- and so accordingly I fired,
killed one of the Captain's chief enemies and wounding the other;
who eagerly called for assistance,
but the Captain who had reserved his piece,
coming up to him,
-'tis too late to call for assistance,
you should rather cry to God to pardon your villany;- and so knocked him down with the stock of his gun: three others were also slightly wounded,
who at my approach cried out for mercy.
This the Captain granted upon condition that they would swear to be true to him in recovering the ship,
which they solemnly did;
However I obliged the Captain to keep them bound.
After which I sent Friday and the Captain's mate to secure the boat and bring away the oars and sails;
at their return,
three men coming back,
and seeing their late distressed Captain,
now their conqueror,
submitted to be bound also.
And then it was,
that having more liberty,
I related the adventures of my whole life,
which he heard with a serious and wonderful attention.
I carried him and his two companions into my little fortified castle,
shewed them all my conveniences,
and refreshed them with such provisions as I could afford.
When this was over,
we began to consider about regaining the ship: he said,
that there were twenty-six hands on board,
who knowing their lives were forfeited by the law,
for conspiracy and mutiny,
were so very hardened,
that it would be dangerous for our small company to attack them.
This was a reasonable inference indeed;
but something we must resolve on,
put in execution: we,
therefore heaved the boat upon the beach so high that she could not shoot off at high water mark,
and broke a hole in her not easily to be stopped;
so that all the signals they gave for the boat to come on board were in vain.
This obliged them to send another boat ashore,
with ten men armed,
whose faces the Captain plainly descried,
the boatswain being the chief officer;
but he said there were three honest lads among them,
who were forced into the conspiracy.
Hereupon I gave him fresh courage (for I had perceived he was in concern): In the mean while securing our prisoners,
whom we took to our assistance,
we thought ourselves able enough to adventure a battle.
When the sailors landed,
and beheld their boat in that condition,
they not only hallooed,
but fired for their companions to hear,
yet they received no answer.
This struck them with horror and amazement,
thinking their companions were murdered,
they made as if they would return to the ship.
I could perceive the Captain's countenance change at this,
till of a sudden three men were ordered to look after the boat,
while the other seven leapt on shore in order to search for their companions;
they came to the brow of the hill,
near my ancient castle,
from whence they could see to a great distance in the woods,
and there shooting and hallooing till tired and weary,
they at length seated themselves under a spreading tree.
My opinion was,
that nothing could be done till night,
when I might use some artifice to get them all out of the boat;
but of a sudden they started up,
and made to the sea-side;
hereupon I ordered Friday and the Captain's mate to go over the creek,
and halloo as loud as they could,
and so decoying them into the woods,
come round to me again.
had good effect;
for they followed the noise,
till coming westward to the creek,
they called for their boat to carry them over,
and taking one of the men out of her,
left two to look after her,
having fastened her to the stump of a little tree on shore.
Hereupon immediately the Captain and our party passing the creek,
out of their sight,
we surprised them both,
by the Captain's knocking down one,
and ordering the other in surrender upon pain of death,
and who being the honestest of them all,
sincerely joined with us.
By this time it was pretty late;
when the rest returning to there boat,
which they found aground in the creek,
the tide out,
and the men gone,
they ran about wringing their hands,
crying it was an enchanted island,
and that they should be all murdered by spirits or devils.
My men would willingly have fallen upon them,
but I would not agree to hazard any of our party.
But to be more certain,
Friday & the Captain crawled upon their hands & feet,
as near as possible;
and when the boatswain approached in sight,
so eager was the Captain,
that he fired and killed him on the spot;
Friday wounded the next man,
and a third ran away.
Hereupon I advanced with,
my whole army: and,
it being dark,
I ordered the man we had surprised in the boat,
to call them by their names,
and to parley with them.
Accordingly he called out aloud,
Tom Smith!- He answered,
Robinson!- answered the other.
-For God's sake Tom,
or you're all dead men.
Who must we surrender to?- says Smith.
-To our captain and fifty men here,
who have taken me prisoner,
wounded Will Frye,
and killed the boatswain.
Shall we have quarter then?- said he.
Hereupon the Captain calls out,
you know my voice,
and you shall all have your lives granted,
except Will Atkins-.
Hereupon Atkins cries out,
-What have I done Captain,
more than the rest,
who have been as bad as me?- But that was a lie,
for he was the person that laid hold of him,
and bound him.
he was ordered to submit to the governor's mercy,
for such was I called.
laying down their arms,
we bound them all,
and seized on their boat.
the Captain expostulated with them,
telling them that the governor was an Englishman,
who might execute them there;
but he thought they would be sent to England,
except Will Atkins,
who was ordered to prepare for death next morning.
Hereupon Atkins implored the Captain to intercede for his life,
and the rest begged they might not be sent to England.
This answered our project for seizing the ship.
For after sending Atkins and two of the worst fast bound to the cave,
and the rest being committed to my bower,
I sent the Captain to treat with them in the,
offering them pardon if they would assist in recovering the ship.
Upon which they all promised to stand by him till the last drop of their blood;
and whoever acted treacherously,
should be hanged in chains upon the beach.
They were all released on these assurances: and then the Captain repaired to the other boat,
making his passenger Captain of her,
and gave him four men well armed;
and five more,
went in the other boat.
By midnight they came within call of the ship,
when the Captain ordered Robinson to hale her,
and tell them that with great difficulty they had found the men at last.
But while they were discoursing,
his mate and the rest entered,
and knocked down the second mate and carpenter,
secured those that were upon the deck,
by putting them under hatches,
while the other boat's crew entered and secured the forecastle;
they then broke into the round-house,
where the mate after some resistance,
shot the pirate captain through the head,
upon which all the rest yielded themselves prisoners.
And thus the ship being recovered,
the joyful signal was fired,
which I heard with the greatest joy imaginable: nor was it long before he brought the ship to an anchor at the creek's mouth,
coming to me unawares,
says he -my dearest friend and deliverer,
there is your ship,
and we are your servants-: a comfort so unspeakable,
as made me swoon in his arms while,
with gratitude to Heaven,
we were tenderly embracing each other.
Nothing now remaining,
but to consult what we should do with the prisoners,
whom he thought it was not safe to take on board.
Hereupon concerting with the Captain,
I dressed myself in one of his suits,
and sending for them,
that I was going to leave the island with all my people,
if they would tarry there,
their lives should be spared;
they should be hanged at the first port they came at.
They agreed to stay.
Hereupon I told them my whole story,
charging them to be kind to the Spaniards that were expected,
all my arms,
and informing them of every thing necessary for their subsistence,
I and my man Friday went on board.
But the next morning two of the men came swimming to the ship's side,
desiring the Captain to take them on board,
though he hanged them afterwards,
complaining mightily how barbarously the others used them.
Upon which I prevailed with the Captain to take them in;
and being severely whipt and pickled,
they proved more honest for the future,
and so I bid farewell to this island,
carrying along with me my money,
and goat-skin cap;
setting sail December 12,
after twenty-eight years,
and nineteen days residence,
that same day and month that I escaped from Sallee;
landing in England,
after five and thirty years absence from my own country;
which rendered me altogether a stranger there.
Here I found my first Captain's widow alive,
who had buried a second husband,
but in very mean circumstances,
and whom I made easy upon his account.
Soon after I went down to Yorkshire,
where all my family were expired,
except two sisters,
and as many of one of my brother's children.
I found no provision had been made for me,
they concluding I had been long since dead;
so that I was but in a very slender station.
Indeed the Captain did me a great kindness,
by his report to the owners,
how I had delivered their ship on the Desolate Island,
upon which they made me a present of 200L.
I next went to Lisbon,
taking my man Friday with me,
and there arriving in April,
I met the Portuguese Captain who had taken me on board on the African coast;
he had left off the sea,
and resigned all his business to his son,
who followed the Brazil trade.
So altered both of us were,
that we did not know each other at first,
till I discovered myself more fully to him.
After a few embraces,
I began to enquire of my concerns;
and then the old gentleman told me that it was nine years since he had been at Brazil,
where my partner was then living,
but my trustees were both dead;
that he believed I should have a good account of the product of my plantation;
that the imagination of my being lost,
had obliged my trustees to give an estimate of my share to the procurator fiscal,
in case of my not returning,
had given one third to the king & the rest to the monastery of St. Augustine: but if I put in my claim,
or any one for me,
it would be returned,
except the yearly product which was given to the poor.
I then desired him to tell me what improvement he thought had been made of my plantation,
and whether he imagined it was worth my while to look after it?
he did not know how much it was improved;
but this he was certain of,
that my partner was grown vastly rich upon his half of it;
that he had been informed,
that the kind had 200 moidores per annum of his third part.
that the survivors of my trustees were nervous of an ingenuous character;
that my partner could witness my title,
my name being registered in the country,
by which means I should indefensibly recover considerable sums of money,
how could my trustees dispose of my effects,
when I made you only my heir?
was true but,
there being no affidavit made of my death he could not act as my executor.
he had ordered his don,(then at Brazil),
to act by procuration upon my account,
and he had taken possession of my sugar-house,
having accounted himself for eight years with my partner and trustees for the profits,
of which he would give me a very good account.
this he performed very faithfully in a few days,
making himself indebted to me 470 moidores of gold,
over and above what had been lost at sea,
after I had left the place.
And then he recounted to me what misfortune he had gone through,
which forced my money out of his hands,
to buy part in a new ship-but says he,
-you shall not want,
when my son returns,
every farthing shall be paid you.- Upon which he put into my hand a purse of 150 moidores in gold,
as likewise the instrument,
containing the title to the ship which his son was in,
and which he offered as security for the remainder.
But really when I saw so much goodness,
and real honesty,
I had not the heart to accept it,
for fear he should straiten himself upon my account.
-It is true,- said he,
-it may be so;
but then the money is yours,
and you may have the greatest occasion for it.- However,
I returned fifty of them back again,
promising that I would freely forgive him the other hundred when I got my effects into my hands,
and that I designed to go myself for that purpose.
But he told me he could save me that trouble,
and so caused me to enter my name with a public notary,
as likewise my affidavit,
with a procuration affixed to it;
and this he ordered me to send in a letter to one of his acquaintance,
a merchant in Brazil;
nothing could be more faithfully and honourably observed;
in seven months time,
I had a very faithful account of all my effects,
what sums of money were raised,
and what remained for myself!
In a word I found myself to be worth 5000L.
and 1000 per annum.
Nor was this all,
for my partner congratulated me upon my being alive,
telling me how much my plantation was improved;
what Negroes were at work,
and how many -Ave Marias- he had said to the Virgin Mary for my preservation,
desiring me to accept kindly some presents he had sent me,
which I found showed the greatest generosity.
No sooner did the ship arrive,
but I rewarded my faithful Captain,
by returning him the hundred moidores,
and not only forgiving him all he owed me,
I allowed him yearly a hundred more,
and fifty to his son,
during their lives.
And now being resolved to go to England,
I returned letters of thanks to the Prior of St. Augustine,
and in particular to my old partner,
with very suitable presents.
By the Captain's advice,
I was persuaded to go by land to Calais,
and there take passage for England: when,
as it happened,
I got a young English gentleman,
a merchant's son at Lisbon,
to accompany me,
together with two English,
and two Portuguese gentleman: so that with a Portuguese servant,
an English sailor,
and my man Friday,
there were nine of us in number.
Thus armed and equipped,
we set out,
and came to Madrid,
when the summer decaying,
we hasted to Navarre,
where we were informed that there was scarcely any passing,
be reason of the prodigious quantity of snow;
so that we were obliged to abide near twenty days at Pamoeluria,
and at last to take a guide to conduct us safe towards Tholouse.
And now twelve other gentlemen joining with us,
together with their servants,
we had a very jolly company.
Away our guide led us by frightful mountains,
and through so many intricate mazes and windings,
that we insensibly passed them,
as we travelled along,
ushered us into the prospect of the fruitful and charming provinces of Languedoc and Galcoigne.
But now came on two adventures,
both tragical and comical.
our guide was encountered by three wolves and a bear,
who set upon him and his horse,
and wounded him in three places;
upon which my man,
riding up to his assistance,
shot one of them dead upon the spot,
which made the others retire into the woods.
But the pleasantest adventure was,
to behold my man attack the bear.
'Tis such a creature,
that if you let him alone,
he will never meddle with you,
and this my man very well knew,
and so begging leave of me in broken English,
he told us,
-he would make good laugh-.
you silly fool,'
'he'll eat you up at a mouthful.'
-Eatee me up,- replied he,
by way of scorn,
-me not only eatee him,
but make much good laugh.- Upon which,
pulling off his boots,
he claps on his pumps,
and running after the monstrous beast,
he called out,
that he wanted to discourse with him,
and then throwing stones on purpose to incense him,
the beast turns about in fury,
with prodigious strides,
shuffles after him.
But though he was not swift enough to keep up pace with Friday,
who made up to us as it were for help;
yet being angry,
'immediately take horse,
and let us shoot the creature.'
But he cried,
me make you laugh much.- And so he turned about,
making signs to follow,
while the bear ran after,
till coming to a great oak,
he ascended in a minute,
leaving his gun,
at the bottom of it.
Nor did the bear make any difficulty of it,
but ascended like a cat,
though his weight was very great.
You must consider I was not a little amazed at the folly of my man,
as not perceiving any thing to occasion our laughter,
till such time as we rode up nearer,
and beheld the bear mounted upon the oak,
on the beginning of the same branch,
to which Friday clung at the farther end,
where the bear durst not come.
Hereupon Friday cried out,
me make much laugh,
me make bear dance.- Upon which he fell a shaking the bough,
which made the creature look behind him,
to see how he could retreat.
Then as if the bear had understood his stammering English,
-Why you no come farther,
Mr. Bear- said he,
Mr. Bear come farther-;
and then indeed we all burst into a laughter;
especially when we perceived Friday drop like a squirrel upon the ground,
leaving the beast to make the best of his way down the tree.
And now thinking it the most convenient time to shoot the creature,
Friday cried out,
-O dear master,
me shoot by and by-;
when taking up the gun,
-me no shoot yet-,
said he -me make one more much laugh.- And accordingly he was as good as his word;
for the creature descending backwards from the tree very leisurely,
before he could lay one foot on the ground,
Friday shot him through the ear,
and looking to see whether we were pleased,
he burst out into a hearty laughter,
-So we kill de bear in my country,
not with the gun,
but with much long arrows.- Thus ended our diversion,
to our great satisfaction;
especially in a place where the terrible howlings struck us with a continual terror.
But the snows now growing very deep,
particularly on the mountains,
the ravenous creatures were then obliged to seek for sustenance in the villages,
were coming by surprise on the country people,
killed several of them,
besides a great number of their sheep and horses.
Our guide told us,
we had yet one more dangerous place to pass by;
and if their were any more wolves in the country,
there we should find them.
This was a small plain encompassed with woods,
to get through a long lane to the village where we were to lodge.
When we entered the wood,
the sun was within half an hour of setting: and a little after it was set,
we came into the plain,
which was not above two furlongs over,
and then we perceived five great wolves cross the road,
without taking notice of us,
and so swift as though they were pursuing after their prey.
Hereupon our guide,
believing there were more coming,
desired us to be on our guard.
Accordingly our eyes were very circumspect,
till about half a league farther,
we perceived a dead horse,
and near a dozen of wolves devouring its carcase.
My man Friday fain would have fired at them,
but I would not permit him;
nor had we gone half over the plain,
but we heard dreadful howlings in a wood on our left,
when presently we saw an hundred come up against us,
as though they had been an experienced army.
This obliged us to form ourselves in the best manner;
and then I ordered that every other man should fire,
that those who did not,
might be ready to gave a second volley,
should they advance upon us;
and then every man should make use of his pistols.
But there was no necessity for this;
for the enemy being terrified stopped at the noise of the fire;
four of them were shot dead,
several others being wounded;
went bleeding away,
as we could very plainly discover by the snow.
And now remembering what had been often told me,
that such was the majesty of a man's voice,
as to strike terror even in the fiercest creatures,
I ordered all our companions to halloo as loud as possible;
and in this notion I was not altogether mistaken;
for they immediately turned about upon the first halloo,
and began to retire;
ordering a second volley in their rear,
they galloped into the woods with great precipitation.
Thus we had some small time to load our pieces again,
and then made all the haste we could on our way;
but we had not rode far,
before we were obliged to put ourselves in a posture of defence as before,
being alarmed with a very dreadful noise in the same wood,
on our left hand,
the same way as we were to pass,
only that it was at some distance from us.
By this time the darksome clouds began to spread over the elements,
and the night growing very dusky,
made it so much the more to our disadvantage;
but still the noise increasing,
we were fully assured,
that it was the howling and the yelling of those ravenous creatures;
when presently three troops of wolves on our front appeared in sight,
as though a great number of them had a design to surround us,
and devour us in spite of fate.
But as they did not fall upon us immediately,
we proceeded on our journey in as swift a manner as the roads would permit our horses,
which was only a large trot.
It was in this manner we travelled,
till such a time as we discovered another wood,
and had the prospect of its entrance through which were to pass,
at the farthest side of the plain.
But surely none can express the terror we were in,
when approaching the lane,
we perceived a confused number of the fiercest wolves,
as it were guarding its entrance.
Nor were we long in this amazement,
before another occasion of horror presented itself;
for suddenly we heard the report of a gun at another opening in the wood and,
looking that way,
out ran a horse bridled and saddled,
flying with the greatest swiftness,
and no less than sixteen or seventeen wolves pursuing after him,
in order to devour the poor creature;
and unquestionably they did so,
after they had run him down,
not being able to hold out that swiftness with which he at first escaped them.
When we rode up to that entrance from whence the horse came forth,
there lay the carcases of another horse & two men,
mangled and torn by these devouring wolves;
and undoubtedly one of these men was the person who fired the gun which we had heard,
for the piece lay by him;
most of the upper part of his body and his head were entombed in the bowels of these ravenous creatures.
What course to take,
whether to proceed or retreat,
we could not tell;
but it was not long before the wolves themselves made us to come to a resolution;
for such numbers surrounded us,
every one of whom expected their prey,
that were our bodies to be divided among them,
there would not be half a mouthful a-piece.
very happy it was for us,
that but a little way from the entrance,
there lay some very large timber trees,
which I supposed had been cut down and laid there for sale: amongst which I drew my little troop,
placing ourselves in a line behind one long tree,
which served us for a breast work,
when desiring them to alight,
we stood in a triangle,
or three fronts,
closing our bodies in the centre,
the only place where we could preserve them.
Never certainly was there a more furious charge than what the wolves made upon us in this place: and the sight of the horses,
which was the principal prey they aimed at,
provoked their hunger,
and added to their natural fierceness.
They came on us with a most dreadful noise,
that made the woods ring again: and beginning to mount the pieces of timber,
I ordered every man to fire,
as before directed: and,
so well did they take their aim,
that they killed several of the wolves at the first volley;
but still we were obliged to keep a continual firing,
by reason they came on like devils,
pushing one another with the greatest fury.
But our second volley something abated their courage,
when stopping a little,
we hoped they would have made the best of their way,
it did not prove so,
for others made a new attempt upon us;
and though in four firings,
we killed seventeen or eighteen of them,
laming twice as many,
yet they several times successively came on,
as though they valued not their lives for the sake of their prey.
Unwilling was I to spend our last shot too suddenly,
and therefore calling my other servant,
and giving him a horn of powder,
bid him lay a large train quite along the timber,
which he did,
while Friday was charging my fusee and his own,
with the greatest dexterity.
By this time the wolves coming up the timber,
I set fire to the train,
by snapping a discharged pistol close to the powder.
This so scorched and terrified them,
that some fell down,
and others jumped in among us: but there were immediately dispatched,
when all the rest,
frighted with the light,
which the darksome night caused to appear more dreadful,
began at length to retire;
upon which ordering our last pistols to be fired at once,
giving at the same time a great shout,
the wolves were obliged to have recourse to their swiftness,
and turn tail;
and then we sallied out upon twenty lame ones,
cutting them in pieces with our swords,
which obliged them to howl lamentably,
to the terror of their fellows,
who resigned to us the field as victorious conquerors.
I question whether Alexander king of Macedonia,
in any of his conquests,
had more occasion for triumph than we had;
for he was but attacked with numerous armies of soldiers;
whereas our little army was obliged to combat a legion of devils,
as it were,
worse than the cannibals,
the same moment they had slain us,
would have sacrificed us,
to satisfy their voracious appetites.
Thus ended our bloody battle with the beasts,
having killed threescore of them,
and saved our lives from their fury.
We still had a league further to go,
as we went,
our ears were saluted with their most unwelcome howlings,
and we expected every moment another attack.
in an hour's time,
we arrived at the town where we were to lodge;
and here we found the place strictly guarded,
and all in terrible confusion,
as well they might,
for fear of the bears and wolves breaking into the village,
in order to prey upon their cattle and people.
The next morning we were obliged to take a new guide,
by reason the other fell very bad of his wounds,
which he had received as before mentioned.
After we had reached Tholouse,
we came into a warm,
and fruitful country,
not infested with wolves,
nor any sort of ravenous creatures: and when we told our story there,
they much blamed our guide,
for conducting us through the forest at the foot of the mountains,
in such a severe season,
when the snow obliged the wolves to seek for shelter in the woods.
When we informed them in what manner we placed ourselves,
and the horses in the centre,
they exceedingly reprehended us,
and told us,
it was an hundred to one,
but we had been all destroyed;
for that it was the very sight of the horses,
their so much desired prey,
that made the wolves more ragingly furious than they would have been,
which was evident,
by their being at other times really afraid of a gun;
but then being exceedingly hungry and furious upon that account,
their eagerness to come at the horses made them insensible of their danger;
if we had not,
by a continual fire,
and at last by the cunning stratagem of the train of powder,
got the better of them,
it had been great odds if their number had not overpowered us;
it was a great mercy we alighted from our horses,
and fought them with that courage and conduct,
had we failed to do,
every man of us,
with our beasts,
had been devoured: and,
this was nothing but truth;
for never in my life was I so sensible of danger,
as when three hundred,
devils came roaring upon us,
to shun whose unwelcome company,
if I was sure to meet a storm every week;
I would rather go a thousand leagues by sea.
I think I have,
nothing uncommon in my passage through France to take notice of,
since other travellers of greater learning and ingenuity,
have given more ample account than my pen is able to set forth.
From Tholouse I travelled to Paris,
from thence to Calais,
where I took shipping,
and landed at Dover the 14th of January,
in a very cold season.
Thus come to the end of my travels,
I soon discovered my new found estate,
and all the bills of exchange I had were currently paid.
The good ancient widow,
my only privy counsellor,
thought no pains nor care too great to procure my advantage,
nor had I ever occasion to blame her fidelity,
which drew from me an ample reward.
I was for leaving my effects in her hands,
intending to set out for Lisbon,
and so the Brazils;
but as in the Desolate Island I had some doubt about the Romish religion,
so I knew there was little encouragement to settle there,
unless I would apostatize from the orthodox faith,
or live in continual fear of the Inquisition.
Upon this account I resolved to sell my plantation;
for that intent,
I wrote to my old friend at Lisbon,
who returned to me an answer to my great satisfaction;
that he could sell it to good account;
if I thought it convenient to give him liberty to offer it in my name to the two merchants,
the survivors of my trustees residing at the Brazils,
who consequently knew its intrinsic value,
having lived just upon the spot,
and who I was sensible were very rich,
and therefore might be the more willing to purchase it: he did not in the least doubt,
but that I should make four or five thousand pieces of eight more of it,
than I could,
if I disposed of it in any other manner whatsoever.
You may be sure I could not but agree with this kind and ingenuous proposal;
and immediately I sent him an order to offer it to them,
which he accordingly did;
so that about eight months after,
the ship being in that time returned,
he gave me a satisfactory account,
that they not only willingly accepted the offer,
but that they had also remitted 33,000 pieces of eight to a correspondence of their own at Lisbon,
in order to pay for the purchase.
I signed the instrument of sale,
according to form,
which they had sent from Lisbon,
and returned it again to my old friend,
he having sent me,
for me estate,
bills of three hundred and twenty-eight thousand pieces of eight,
reserving the payment of one hundred moidores per annum,
which I had allowed him during life,
likewise: fifty to his son during life also,
according to my faithful promise,
which the plantation was to make good as a rent charge.
And thus having led my reader to the knowledge of the first parts of my life so remarkable for the many peculiar providences that attended it,
floating in the ocean of uncertainty and disappointment,
of adversity and prosperity,
and yet ending happily;
methinks now that I am come to a safe & pleasant haven,
it is time to cast out my anchor,
laying up my vessel,
for a while,
adieu to foreign adventures.
I had no other concerns to look after but the care of my brother's two sons,
with the good widow's persuasions,
obliged me to continue at home seven years.
One of these children I bred up a gentleman,
and the other an experienced sailor,
remarkable for his courage and bravery.
I married a virtuous young gentlewoman,
of a very good family,
by whom I had two sons and one daughter.
But my dear and tender wife leaving this earthly stage (as in the second part of my life you will hear) which rent my soul as it were asunder,
my native country became weary and tiresome to me;
and my nephew happening to come from sea,
tempted me to venture another voyage to the East Indies,
which I did in the year 1694,
at which time I visited my island,
and informed myself of every thing that happened since my departure.
One might reasonably imagine,
that what I had suffered,
together with an advanced age,
and the fear of losing not only what I had gotten,
but my life also,
might have choaked up all the seeds of youthful ambition and curiosity,
and put a lasting period to my wandering inclinations.
But as nothing but death can fully allay the active part of my life,
no less remarkable for the many various contingencies of it,
you will next perceive how I visited my little kingdom,
saw my successors the Spaniards,
had an account of the usage they met with from the Englishmen,
agreeing and disagreeing,
uniting and separating,
till at last they were subjected to the Spaniards,
who yet used them very honorably,
together with the wonderful and successful battles over the Indians who invaded,
and thought to have conquered the island,
but were repelled by their invincible courage and bravery,
having taken eleven men and five woman prisoners by which at my return,
I found about twenty young children on my little kingdom.
Here I staid twenty days,
left them supplies of all necessary things,
as also a carpenter and smith,
and shared the islands into parts,
reserving the whole property to myself.
Nor will you be insensible,
by the account of these things,
of several new adventures I have been engaged in,
the battles I have fought,
the deliverances I have met with;
in the surprising relation of such remarkable occurrences,
I shall describe many of God's kindest providences to me in particular,
no less conspicuous in the same goodness,
and majesty of our great creator,
shown one way or other,
over the face of the earth,
if duly adverted to.
THE FURTHER ADVENTURES OF
-Wherein are contained several strange and surprising accounts of his travels,
and his most remarkable transactions both by sea and by land;
with his wonderful vision of the angelic world-.
* * * * *
When we consider the puissant force of Nature and,
what mighty influence it has many times over the temper of the mind,
it will be no such great wonder to think,
that my powerful reason should be overcome by a much stronger inclination.
My late acquired kingdom ran continually in my thoughts all the day,
and I dreamed of it in the night: nay,
I made it the continual subject of my talk,
even to impertinence,
when I was awake.
I had such vapours in my head,
that I actually supposed myself at my castle;
that I not only perceived Friday's father the old Spaniard,
and the wicked sailors,
but that I talked and discoursed with them about their manner of living;
that I heard the things related to me,
which I found afterwards to be true;
& that I executed my judgments with the greatest severity upon the offenders.
this anticipating all the pleasing joys of my life,
scarcely afforded me one pleasant hour: my dear and tender wife could not but take notice of it,
which drew those affectionate speeches from her: -My dear,- said she,
-I am really persuaded that some secret impulse from Heaven occasions in you a determination to see the island again;
nor am I less sensible,
but your being engaged to me and these dear children is the only hinderance of your departure.
I know my dear,
if I were in the grave,
you would not long continue at home;
prevent not your happiness on my account,
whose only comfort centres in you.
All that I can object is,
that such an hazardous undertaking is no way consistent with a person of your years;
but if you are resolved to go,- added she,
-only permit me to bear you company,
and that is all that I desire.-
Such endearing tenderness,
graced with the most innocent and yet most powerful charms,
brought me insensibly into my right understanding;
and when I considered all the transactions of my life,
and particularly my new engagement,
that I had now one child already born,
and my wife big of another;
and that I had no occasion to seek for more riches,
who already was blessed with sufficiency,
with much struggling I altered my resolutions at last,
resolving to apply myself to some business or other,
which might put a period to such wandering inclinations.
Hereupon I bought a little farm in the county of Bedford,
with a resolution to move thither;
upon this there was a pretty convenient house surrounded with land,
very capable of improvement,
which suited my temper,
as to planting,
Nor was I long before I entered upon my new settlement,
having bought ploughs,
so that I now led the life of a country gentleman,
and as happy in my retirement as the greatest monarch in the world.
And what made me think my happiness the greater was,
that I was in the middle state of life,
which my father had so often recommended,
much resembling the felicity of a rural retirement,
which is elegantly described by the poet in these lines:
-Free from all vices,
free from care,
Age has no pain,
and youth no snare.-
in the midst of this my happiness,
I was suddenly plunged in the greatest sorrow that I could possibly endure;
for when I least expected it,
my dear and tender wife was forced to submit to the irresistable power of Death,
leaving this transitory life for a better.
It is impossible for me to express the beauties of her mind,
or the loveliness of her person;
neither can I too much lament her loss,
which my latest breath shall record;
her influence was greater over me,
than the powers of my own reason,
the importunities of friends,
the instructions of a father,
or the melting tears of a tender and disconsolate mother;
in a word,
she was the spirit of all my affairs,
and the centre of my enterprizes.
since the cruel hand of Death had closed my dearest's eyes,
I seemed in my thoughts a stranger to the world;
my privy counsellor being gone,
I was like a ship without a pilot,
that could only run before the wind.
And when I looked around me in this busy world,
one party labouring for bread,
and the other squandering away their estates;
this put me in mind how I had lived in my little kingdom,
where both reason and religion dictated to me,
that there was something that certainly was the reason and end of life,
which was far superior to what could be hoped for on this side the grave.
My country delights were now as insiped and dull,
as music and science to those who have neither taste nor ingenuity.
resolving to leave off house-keeping,
I left my farm,
and in a few months returned to London.
But neither could that great city,
so famous for its variety of entertainment,
afford me any agreeable delight;
a state of idleness I found to be the very dregs of life,
and most hurtful to body and soul.
It was now the beginning of the year 1684,
at which time my nephew (who as I before observed had been brought up to the sea,
and advanced to be captain of a ship) was returned from a short voyage to Bilboz,
the first he had made in that station.
He comes to me one morning,
telling me that some merchants of his acquaintance had proposed to him to go a voyage for them to the East Indies and China in the manner of private traders;
-and now uncle-,
-if you'll accompany me thither,
I'll engage to land you upon your old island,
to visit the state of your little kingdom-.
Just before he came in,
my thoughts were fixed to get a patent for its possession,
and then to fill it with inhabitants.
After I had paused a while,
and looked stedfastly on him.
-What devil or spirit-,
-sent you with this unlucky errand-?
He started at first;
but recovering himself,
when he perceived I was not offended;
-what I have proposed cannot I hope,
be styled unlucky,
since certainly you must be desirous to see your little territory,
where you reigned with more content,
than any of your brother kings in the universe.
-if you will leave me there,
and call for me as you came back,
I care not if I give my consent-: but he answered,
-that the merchants would not allow their vessel loaden with an infinite value,
to return there again,
which was a month's sail out of the way;
Sir- said he,
-if I should miscarry,
was your request granted,
why then you would be locked up as before-.
This indeed carried a great deal of reason in it;
but we found out a remedy,
and that was to carry a framed sloop on board,
ready to be set up in the island,
by the assistance of some carpenters,
which we should carry with us,
that might be fitted in a few days to go to sea.
I was not long in forming my resolution,
which overswayed my good friend the widow's persuasions,
and the natural affection I bore to my young children.
I made my will,
and settled my estate in such manner,
that I was perfectly sure my poor infants would have justice done them.
The good widow not only undertook to make provision,
for my voyage,
but also took the charge of my domestic affairs,
and to provide for my children's education;
and indeed no mother could take more care,
or understood that office better;
for which I lived to reward and return her my hearty thanks.
The beginning of January,
my nephew being ready to sail,
I and Friday went on board in the Downs on the 8th,
besides that sloop already mentioned,
a very considerable cargo for my new colony.
I had some servants,
whom I proposed to leave there,
as they should appear willing;
there were two carpenters,
and a very ingenuous fellow who was Jack-of-all-trades;
for he was not only a cooper by trade,
but also he was dexterous at making wheels and hand-mills to grind corn,
likewise a good turner,
and a good pot-maker.
I also carried a tailor,
who consented to stay in my plantation,
and proved a most necessary fellow in the island.
As to my cargo,
it consisted of a sufficient quantity of linen,
and English stuffs for clothing the Spaniards that I expected to find there;
as likewise gloves,
together with beds,
and household stuff,
especially kitchen utensils,
tools of all sorts,
and all other things necessary;
cost me about three hundred pounds.
Nor was this all for I carried an hundred spare arms,
besides some pistols,
a considerable quantity of several sorts of shot,
two brass cannon,
and the iron part of some pikes and halberts.
I made my nephew take with us two small quarter-deck guns,
more than he had occasion for in his ship,
to leave behind,
if there was a necessity;
so that we might build a fort there,
and man it against all opposers whatsoever.
we put out to sea;
and though I can't say this voyage was so unprosperous as my others had been,
yet contrary winds drove us so far northward,
that we were obliged to put in at Galway in Ireland,
where we lay wind-bound two and twenty days.
Here indeed our provisions were very cheap,
and we added to our ship's stores by taking several live hogs,
two cows and calves,
which I then resolved to put on shore in my island,
if our necessities did not call for them.
On the 5th of February we sailed from Ireland,
with a very fair gale,
which lasted for some days;
and I think it was about the 20th of the same month late in the evening,
when the mate informed us,
that he saw a flash of fire,
and heard a gun fired: and when he was speaking a boy came in and told us,
that the boatswain had heard another.
Upon which we all ran to the quarter-deck,
in a few moments,
we perceived a terrible fire at a distance.
We had immediately recourse to our reckonings,
we were all of opinion,
that there could be no land that way,
it appearing to be at N.N.W.
Hereupon we concluded that some ship had taken fire at sea,
and that it could not be far off by the report of the guns which we had heard.
We made up directly to it,
and in half an hour's time the wind being fair,
we could plainly perceive a great ship on fire in the middle of the sea.
Touched with this unhappy disaster,
and considering my former circumstances,
when the Portuguese Captain took me up,
I immediately ordered five guns to be fired that the poor creatures,
not seeing us,
it being dark,
(though we could perceive their flame) might be sensible there was deliverance at hand,
and consequently might endeavor to save themselves in their boat.
Nor was it long before the ship blew up in the air and the fire was extinguished in the ocean.
But supposing them all to be in their boats,
we hung out our lanterns and kept firing till eight o'clock in the morning;
when with our perspectives,
we beheld two boats full of people making towards us tho' the tide was against them then spreading out our ancient;
and hanging out a waft,
as a signal for them to come on board,
in half an hour's time;
we came up to them,
and took them all in,
there being no less than sixty-four men,
It was a French merchant ship of three hundred tons;
homeward bound from Quebec in the river of Canada.
The master informed me how,
by the negligence of the steersman,
the steerage was set on fire: that,
at his outcry for help,
the fire was,
as we thought totally extinguished;
that some sparks getting between the timber,
and within the ceiling,
it proceeded into the hold,
where there was no resisting it;
& then they got into their boats,
as creatures in the last extremity,
with what provision they had,
together with oars,
and a compass,
intending to go back to Newfoundland,
the wind blowing at S.E.
and by E. though there were several chances against them as storms to overset and founder them,
rains and colds to benumb and perish their limbs,
and contrary winds to keep them back and starve them;
-in this our great distress we heard the welcome report of your guns,
when with unspeakable joy,
taking down our masts and sails,
we were resolved to lie by till morning;
but perceiving your light,
we set our oars at work,
to keep our boat a head,
the sooner to attain your ship,
the happy instrument of our deliverance-.
Indeed no one can express the joy of these poor creatures on this occasion: fear and grief are easily set forth;
sighs and tears,
with a few motions of the hands and head,
are all the demonstrations of these passions;
but an excess of joy,
carries in it a thousand extravagancies;
among the French,
whose temper is allowed to be more volatile,
than that of other nations.
Some were weeping,
tearing themselves in the greatest agonies of sorrow,
and running stark mad about the ship,
while the rest were stamping with their feet,
wringing their hands,
with a few returning hearty thanks to the Almighty;
and crossing themselves.
if I am not mistaken,
our surgeon was obliged to let thirty of them blood.
But among the passengers,
there were two priests,
the one an old,
and the other a young man;
but what amazed me more was,
that the oldest was in the worst plight;
for no sooner did he perceive himself freed from danger,
but he dropt down as it were without life,
and to every one's appearance quite dead;
but the surgeon chasing and rubbing his arm,
opened a vein,
which at first dropped,
and then flowing more freely,
the old man began to open his eyes;
and in a quarter of an hour was well again.
But soon remembering this happy change,
the joy of which whirled his blood about faster than the vessels could convey it,
he became so feverish,
as made him more fit for bedlam than any other place.
But the surgeon giving him a sleepy dose,
he was perfectly composed the next morning.
Remarkable indeed was the behaviour of the young priest.
At his entrance on board the ship,
he fell on his face in the most humble prostration to the Almighty.
he had fallen into a swoon,
and so ran to help him up;
but he modestly told me,
-he was returning his thanks to the Almighty,
desiring me to leave him a few moments,
next to his Creator,
he would return me thanks also-.
And indeed he did so about three minutes after,
with great seriousness,
while the tears stood in his eyes,
which convinced me of the gratitude of his soul.
Nor did he less show his piety and wisdom in applying himself to his country people,
and labouring to compose them,
by the most powerful reasons,
these people had taken their night's repose,
in such lodgings as our ship would allow,
we found nothing but the best of manners,
and the most civil acknowledgements,
for which the French are eminently remarkable.
The next day the Captain and one of the priests desired to speak with me and my nephew the commander.
They told us,
-that they had saved some money and valuable things out of the ruined vessel,
which was at our service;
only that they desired to be set on shore some where in our way-.
At the first my nephew was for accepting the money;
but I (who knew how hard my case would have been,
had the Portuguese Captain served me so) persuaded him to the contrary;
and therefore told them,
-that as we had done nothing but what we were obliged to do,
by nature and humanity,
and what we ourselves might expect from others in such calamity;
so we took them up to save them,
not to plunder them,
or leave them naked upon the land,
to perish for want of subsistance,
and therefore would not accept their money: but as to landing them,
that was a great difficulty;
for being bound to the East Indies,
it was impossible wilfully to change our voyage upon their particular account,
nor could my nephew- (who was under charter party to pursue it by was of Brazil) -answer it to the freighters-.
All that we could do,
was to put ourselves in the way of meeting some ships homeward bound from the West Indies,
they might get a passage to France or England.
they were very thankful for our first kindness;
but were under great concern,
especially the passengers,
at their being carried to the East Indies.
-They begged therefore,
I would keep on the banks of Newfoundland,
they might meet with some ship,
or sloop to carry them to Canada,
whence they came.- As this was but a reasonable request,
I was inclined to grant it,
since it was no breach of charter party,
and that the laws of God and nature obliged us to do what good we could to our fellow-creatures;
and besides the danger we ourselves should be in for want of provisions: so we consented to carry them to Newfoundland,
if wind and weather would permit;
that we should carry them to Martinico in the West Indies.
as it happened,
in a week's time we made the banks of Newfoundland,
where the French people hired a bark to carry them to France.
But the young priest being desirous to go to the East Indies,
I readily agreed to it,
because I liked his conversation,
and two or three of the French sailors also entered themselves on board our ship.
Now directing our course for the West Indies,
steering S. and S. by E. about twenty days,
with little wind,
another adventure happened to exercise our humanity.
In the latitude of 27 degrees,
5 minutes north,
the 19th of March 1694-5,
we perceived a sail,
(our course S. E.
and by S.)
which bore upon us,
and then she appeared to be a large vessel,
having lost her main topmast and boltsprit;
when firing a gun as a signal of distress,
wind N. N.W.
we soon came to speak with her.
She was a ship from Bristol,
bound home from Barbadoes,
out of which road she had been forced in a hurricane to the westward,
in which they lost their masts.
They told us,
-their expectations were to see the Bahama islands,
but were driven away by a strong wind at N.N.W.
and having no sails to work the ship with,
but the main-course and a kind of square sail upon a jury foremast,
because they could not come near the land,
were endeavouring to stand for the Canaries: nay what was worse,
besides all their fatigue,
they were almost starved for want of provision,
having ate nothing for eleven all that they had aboard,
a barrel of fresh water and seven casks of rum-.
In this ship were passengers,
and a maid-servant,
who were in a most deplorable condition for want of food.
If I had not gone on board their ship,
the knowledge of their misery had been concealed from me,
and they would have inevitably perished;
their second mate who was Captain,
by reason the true Captain was not on board when the hurricane happened,
had before informed me that there was such persons on board,
whom he supposed to be dead,
being afraid to inquire after them,
because he had nothing to give them for relief.
Hereupon we resolved to let them have what we could spare,
ordering the mate to bring some of his men on board us,
which he did accordingly: as he and they looked like skeletons,
when meat was set before them,
I ordered them to eat sparingly.
however they soon fell sick;
which obliged the surgeon to mix something in their broth,
which was to be to them both food and physic.
When they were fed,
we ordered our mate to carry them a sack of bread,
and four or five pieces of beef;
but the surgeon charged them to see it boiled,
and to keep a guard on the cook-room,
to prevent the men from eating it raw,
and consequently killing themselves with what was designed for their relief.
I desired the mate to see what condition the poor passengers were in,
and the surgeon gave him a pitcher of the same broth which he had prepared for the men.
And being curious to see this scene of misery myself,
I took the Captain (as we called the mate of the ship) in our own boat,
and sailed after them.
Here was a sad sight indeed!
scarce were the victuals half boiled in the pot;
but they were ready to break open the cook-room door.
To stay their stomachs the mate gave them biscuits,
which were dipped in and softened them with the liquor of the meat,
which they call -bruise-;
it was for their own safety,
that he was obliged to give them but a little at a time;
and so feeding them gradually,
their bellies were comfortable filled,
and the men did very well again.
But when they came to the poor gentlewoman in the cabin,
who for several days had continued without food,
giving what she had to her son,
they found her as it were in the arms of death.
She was sitting upon the floor of the deck,
with her back up against the sides,
between two chairs,
which were lashed fast,
and her head shrunk,
between her shoulders,
like a senseless corpse.
Nothing was wanting in my mate to revive and encourage her;
opening her lips,
and putting some broth into her mouth with a spoon.
But not having strength to speak,
she lifted up her head with much difficulty,
intimating that it was now too late!
at the same time pointing to the youth her son,
as though she desired him to do what he could to save the lad;
and in a little time after she died.
was not so far gone;
yet lay stretched out on a cabin bed,
like one that had scarce any life.
In his mouth was a piece of an old glove,
the rest of which he had ate up.
At first he vomited what the mate had given him;
but at length began sensibly to revive,
though in the greatest concern for the death of his tender mother.
As to the poor maid,
she lay by her mistress,
like one in the last pangs of death: her limbs were distorted,
one of her hands were clasped round the frame of a chair,
which she grasped so hard,
that it was with some difficulty we separated her from it;
her other arm lay over her head,
and her feet lay both together,
set fast against the frame of the cabin table;
not only being,
starved with hunger,
but overcome with grief at the loss of her mistress,
whom she loved most tenderly.
It was a great while before the surgeon could bring her to life,
and a much longer time before she came to her senses.
After we had sailed with them some days,
we sent them five barrels of beef,
one of pork,
two hogsheads of biscuit,
and other things;
taking three casks of sugar,
and some pieces of eight as payment,
we left them,
but took the youth and maid with us,
with all their goods.
The lad was about seventeen years old,
but mightily concerned for the loss of his honoured mother,
having lost his father at Barbadoes but a few months before.
He beseeched the surgeon to intercede with me to take him out of the ship;
for that the sailors,
not sparing a small sustenance,
had starved his mother.
But hunger has no bounds,
and consequently is incapable of any compassion.
When the surgeon told him,
our voyage might put him in bad circumstances,
and farther from his friends,
he said -he did not care,
if he was delivered from that terrible crew;
that as the Captain- (meaning me) -had saved him from death,
so he was sure he would do him no harm;
as for the maid,
when she was restored to her senses,
she would be no less thankful,
let us carry them where we would-.
And indeed the surgeon so represented their case to me,
that I consented,
and took them on board with all their goods,
except eleven hogsheads of sugar;
but the youth having a bill of lading,
I made the commander oblige himself to deliver a letter and the deceased widow's goods to Mr. Rogers,
a merchant in Bristol;
but I believe the ship was lost at sea,
for we never could hear what became of her afterwards.
We were now in the latitude 19 deg.
having as yet a tolerable good voyage.
passing by several little incidents relating to wind and weather,
I shall relate what is most remarkable concerning my little kingdom,
to which I was then drawing near.
I had great difficulty in finding it,
for as I came to,
and went from it before,
on the south and east side of the island,
as coming from the Brazils,
so now approaching between the main and the island,
not having any chart for the coast,
nor land mark,
it obliged us to go on shore on several islands in the mouth of the river Oroonoko,
but to the purpose.
Thus I perceived,
that what I thought was a continent before,
was no such thing,
but a long island,
or rather a ridge of sands.
On one of these islands I found some Spaniards,
but they belonged to the isle of Trinidad,
who came hither in a sloop to make salt,
and try to find some pearl muscles.
But at length I came fair on the south side of my island,
and there I presently knew the countenance of my little kingdom;
so we brought the ship safe to an anchor,
broadside within the creek,
where stood my ancient and venerable castle.
No sooner did I see the place,
but calling for Friday,
I asked him where he was?
But when he looked a little,
he clapped his hands,
O there!- pointing to our old abode,
and then fell a dancing and capering as if he was mad,
and I had much ado to keep him from jumping into the sea,
to swim ashore.
'what do you think,
shall we go to see your father?'
at the mentioning his father's name,
the poor affectionate creature fell a-weeping: -No,
no,- says he,
-me see him no more,
never see poor father more!
he long ago die,
die long ago: he much old man.-
'You don't know that,'
'but shall we see any body else?'
He looks about,
and pointing to the hill above my house,
we see there much men and there-: which,
though I could not perceive them with my perspective glass,
by what the men themselves told me the next day.
When the English ancient was spread,
and three guns fired,
as a signal of friendship,
we perceived a smoke rise from the creek;
upon which I ordered the boat out,
taking Friday with me,
and hanging out a white flag of truce,
I went on shore,
accompanied also by the young friar,
to whom I had related the history of the first part of my life;
besides we had sixteen men well armed,
in case we had met with any opposition.
After we had rowed directly into the creek,
the first man I fixed my eye upon was the Spaniard,
whose life I had saved,
and whose face I perfectly well knew.
I ordered them all to stay in the boat for a while: but Friday,
perceiving his father at a distance,
would have jumped into the sea,
had they not let the boat go.
No sooner was he on shore,
but he flew like a swift arrow out of a bow to embrace his aged father.
Certainly it would melt a man of the firmest resolution into the softest tears to see with what uncommon transports of joy he saluted him;
he first kissed him,
then stroked his face,
took him in his arms,
laid him under a shady tree,
sat down by him,
then looked as earnestly at him as one could do at a picture,
for a quarter of an hour together.
After this he would lie upon the ground,
stroke his legs and kiss them,
then get up and stare at him,
as though he was bewitched;
but the next day one could not forbear laughter to see his behaviour,
for he would walk several hours with his father along the shore,
leading him by the hand as tho' he was a lady;
every now and then,
he would run to the boat to get something for him,
as a lump of sugar,
or something or other that was good.
His frolics ran in another channel in the afternoon;
when he set old Friday on the ground,
he would dance round him,
making comical postures and gestures;
and all this while would be telling him one story or another of his travels and adventures.
It was on the 10th of April,
that I set my foot upon the island a second time.
When my faithful Spaniard,
accompanied by one more,
approached the boat,
he little knew who I was,
till I discovered myself to him.
-don't you know me-?
He spoke never a word,
but giving his musket to his attendant,
extended his arms,
and saying something in Spanish that I did not then understand,
he came forward & embraced me,
-he was inexcusable not to know his deliverer: who,
like an angel sent from heaven,
had saved his life-;
He then beckoned to the man to call out his companions,
asking me if I would walk to my own habitation and take possession,
where I should find some mean improvements;
but indeed they were extraordinary ones: for they had planted so many trees so close together,
that the place was like a labyrinth,
which none could find out except themselves,
who knew its intricate windings.
I asked him the meaning of all these fortifications?
he told me -he would give a large account of what had passed since my departure till this time,
and how he had subdued some English,
who thought to be their murderers,
hoping I would not be displeased,
since necessity compelled them to it-.
As I knew they were wicked villains,
so I told him,
that I was not only far from finding fault with it,
but was rather heartily glad that they had subdued them.
While we were thus talking,
the man whom he sent returned,
accompanied by eleven more,
but in such habits,
that it was impossible to tell what nations they were of.
He first turned to me,
and pointing to them,
-These Sir,- said he,
-are some of the gentlemen who owe their lives to your goodness-,
then turning to them,
and pointing to me,
he made them sensible who I was;
then indeed they saluted me one by one,
not as ordinary men,
but as tho' they had been ambassadors or noblemen,
and I a triumphant conqueror;
for their behaviour not only agreed with a manlike,
but at the same time was so obliging and courteous,
as made them agreeable to the last degree.
Before I relate the history of the transactions of my kingdom,
as I had it from the Spaniard's own mouth,
I must here insert what I omitted in my former relation.
The matter is this: Just before we weighed anchor and set sail,
there happened a quarrel on board the ship,
which had like to have occasioned a second mutiny,
till such time the courageous Capitan,
taking two of the most refractory prisoners,
laid them in irons threatening,
as they were concerned in the former disorders,
so have them hanged in England for running away with the ship.
This frightened some of the rest,
as thinking the Captain would serve them in the same manner,
though he seemed to give them good word for the present.
But the mate having intelligence of this,
mad me acquainted with their fears;
so that to make them more easy,
and ourselves more safe from their conspiracies I was obliged to go down,
and pass my honour's word for it,
that upon their good behaviour,
all that was past should be forgiven;
in testimony of which,
I ordered the two men's irons to be taken off;
& themselves forgiven.
But as this had brought us to an anchor that night,
in which there was a calm;
the two men that had been in irons stole each of them a musket,
and some other weapons,
and taking the ship's pinnace,
not yet hauled up,
ran away to their brother rogues.
The next morning we sent the long-boat with men to pursue them,
but all in vain;
would have demolished my little castle,
burnt his furniture and destroyed their plantations,
but having no orders for it,
he did not put it in execution.
And thus there were five Englishmen in the island,
which caused great differences,
as my faithful Spaniard gave me a perfect account of,
in the following manner:
but remember the embassy you sent me about,
and what a disappointment we met with,
by your absence,
at our return.
There is but little variety in the relation of all our voyage,
being blessed with calm weather and a smooth sea.
Great indeed was the joy of my countrymen to see me alive,
having acted as the principal man on board,
the captain of the shipwrecked vessel dying before;
nor was their surprise less,
as knowing I was taken prisoner by the savages of another nation,
they had thought me long since entombed in their monstrous bowels.
But when I showed them the arms,
and provisions I had brought for them,
they looked upon me as a second Joseph advanced in Pharoah's court,
and immediately prepared to come along with me.
Indeed they were obliged to trespass upon their friendly savages,
by borrowing two of their canoes,
under a pretext for fishing;
and they came away the next morning,
but without any provisions of their own,
except a few roots which served them instead of bread.
After three weeks absence we arrived at our habitation.
Here we met with three English sailors,
gave us provisions,
and that letter of direction you had left for us,
which informed us how to bring up tame goats,
every thing that was necessary for our life.
I knew your method best,
so taking Friday's father to assist me,
we managed all the affairs;
nor were the rest of the Spaniards wanting in their kind offices,
dressing food for the Englishmen,
who did nothing but ramble and divert themselves in the woods,
either shooting parrots,
or catching tortoises.
But we had not been long ashore,
before we were informed of two more Englishmen,
unnaturally turned out of their common place of residence,
by the three others above mentioned;
this made my Spaniards and me (whom they now looked upon as their governor in your absence) endeavour to persuade them to take them in,
that we might be as one family;
but all our intreaties were in vain,
so that the poor fellows finding nothing to be done without industry,
pitched their tents on the north side of the island,
a little inclining to the west,
for fear of savages.
Here they built two huts,
one to lodge,
and the other to lay their stores in;
for my good natured Spaniards giving them some seeds,
they dug and planted as I had done,
and began to live prettily.
But while they were thus comfortably going on,
the three unnatural brutes,
in a mere bullying humour,
insulted them by saying,
'the governor (meaning you) had given them a possession of the island,
'em they should build no houses upon their ground,
without paying rent.'
The two honest men (for so let me now distinguish them) thought their three countrymen only jested,
and one of them invited them in,
to see their fine habitations;
while the other facetiously told them
'that since they built tenements with great improvements,
according to the custom of lords,
give them a longer lease;'
at the same time desiring them to fetch a scriviner to draw the writings.
One of these wretches swearing -he should pay for the jest-,
snatches up a fire brand,
and clapping it to the outside of their hut,
very fairly set it on fire,
which would soon have consumed it,
had not the honest man thrust him away,
and trod it with his feet.
Hereupon the fellow returns with his pole,
with which he would have ended his days,
had not the poor man avoided the blow when fetching his musket,
he knocked down the villain that began the quarrel.
The other two coming to assist their fellow,
obliged the honest man to take his musket also,
and both of them presenting their pieces bid the villains stand off;
and if they did not lay down their arms,
death should decide the dispute one way or other.
This brought them to a parley,
in which they agreed to take their wounded man and begone;
but they were in the wrong that they did not disarm them when they had the power,
and then make their complaint to me and my Spaniards for justice,
which might have prevented their farther designs against them.
And indeed so many trespass did they afterwards commit,
by treading down their corn,
shooting their young kids and goats,
and plaguing them night and day,
that they resolved to come to my castle,
challenge all the three,
and decide their right by one plain battle,
while the Spaniards stood by to see fair play.
One day it happened,
that two of my Spaniards (one of whom understood English) being in the woods,
were met by one of the honest men,
who complained how barbarous their countrymen had been in destroying their corn,
killing their milk-goat and three kids,
which deprived them of their subsistence;
and that if we did not grant them relief,
they must be inevitably starved,
and so they parted;
but when my Spaniards came home at night,
and supper being on the table,
one of them began to reprehend the Englishmen,
but in a very mannerly way;
which they resenting,
-What business had their countrymen in that place without leave,
when it was none of their ground?
said my Spaniard,
they must not starve:- but they replied,
-Let them starve and be damn'd,
they should neither plant nor build,
and damn them,
they should be their servants,
and work for them,
for the island was their's,
and they would burn all the huts they should find in the island.
By this rule-,
said my Spaniard,
-We shall be your servants too.
and so you shall- replied the impudent rascal.
Will Atkins cries,
let's have t'other brush with them;
who dare to build in our dominions?- --Thus leaving us something heated with just passion,
away they trooped,
every man having a gun,
muttering some threatening words,
that we could then but imperfectly understand.
That night they designed to murder their two companions,
and slept till midnight in the bower,
thinking to fall upon them in their sleep: not were the honest men less thoughtful concerning them;
for at this juncture they were coming to find them out,
but in a much fairer way.
As soon as the villains came to the huts,
and found nobody there,
they concluded that I and my Spaniard had given them notice,
and therefore swore to be revenged on us.
Then they demolished the poor men's habitations;
not by fire,
as they attempted before,
but pulled down their houses,
limb from limb,
not leaving stick nor stone on the ground where they stood,
broke their household stuff in pieces,
tore up their trees,
spoiled their inclosures,
quite ruined them of every thing they had.
Had these people met together,
no doubt but there would have been a bloody battle;
but Providence ordered it for the better;
for just as the three were got together the two were at our castle;
and when they left us,
the three came back again,
but in great rage,
scoffingly telling us what they had done;
when one taking hold of a Spaniard's hat,
twirls it round,
-And you Seignor Jack Spaniard,
shall have the same sauce,
if you don't mind your manners-.
a grave but courageous man,
knocked him down with one blow of his fist;
at which another villain fired his pistol,
and narrowly missed his body,
but wounded him a little in the ear.
the Spaniard takes up the fellow's musket who he had knocked down,
and would have shot him,
if I and the rest had not come out,
and taken their arms from every one of them.
"These Englishmen perceiving they had made all of us their enemies,
began to cool;
but not withstanding their better words the Spaniards would not return them their arms again,
'they would do them no manner of harm,
if they would live peaceably;
but if they offered any injury to the plantation or castle,
they would shoot them as they would do ravenous beasts.
This made them so mad,
that they went away raging like furies of hell.
They were no sooner gone,
but in came the two honest men,
fired with the justest rage,
if such can be,
having been ruined as aforesaid.
And indeed it was very hard,
that nineteen of us should be bullied by three villains,
continually offending with impunity.
"It was a great while,
before we could persuade the two Englishmen from pursuing,
and undoubtedly killing them with their fire-arms;
but we promised them
'justice should be done them,
in the mean time,
they should reside with us in our habitation.'
In about five days after,
these three vagrants,
almost starved with hunger,
drew near our grove,
and perceiving me,
& two others walking by the side of the creek,
they very submissively desired to be received into the family again.
We told them of
'their great incivility to us,
and of their unnatural barbarity to their countrymen;
but yet we would see what the rest agreed to,
and in half an hour's time would bring them word.'
After some debate,
we called them in,
where their two countrymen laid a heavy charge against them,
for not only ruining,
but designing to murder them,
which they could not deny.
But here I was forced to interpose as a mediator,
by obliging the two Englishmen not to hurt them,
being naked & unarmed,
and that the other three should make them restitution,
by building their two huts,
and fencing their ground in the same manner as it was before.
being in a miserable condition,
they submitted to this at present,
and lived some time regularly enough,
except as to the working part,
which they did not care for,
but the Spaniards would have dispensed with that,
had they continued easy and quiet.
Their arms being given them again,
they scarce had them a week when they became as troublesome as ever;
but an accident happening soon after,
obliged us to lay aside private resentments,
and look to our common preservation.
I went to bed,
perfectly well in health,
and yet by no means could I compose myself to sleep;
being very uneasy,
I got up and looked out,
but it being dark,
I could perceive nothing but the trees around the castle.
I went to bed again,
but it was all one,
I could not sleep;
when one of my Spaniards,
hearing me walk about,
asked who it was up?
-It is I-.
When I told him the occasion,
-such things are not to be slighted;
for certainly there is some mischief plotting against us.
Where are the Englishmen?- said I.
He answered -In their huts-;
for they lay separate from us,
since the last mutiny.
-Well,- said I,
-some kind spirit gives this information for advantage.
Come let us go abroad,
and see if any thing offers to justify our fears.- Upon which I and some of my Spaniards went up the mountain,
not by the ladder,
but through the grove,
and then we were struck with a panic fear on seeing a light,
as though it were a fire,
at a very little distance,
and hearing the voices of several men.
Hereupon we retreated immediately,
and raised the rest of our forces,
and made them sensible of the impending danger;
but with all my authority,
I could not make them stay where they were,
so earnest were they to see how things went.
Indeed the darkness of the night gave them opportunity enough to view them by the light of the fire undiscovered.
As they were in different parties,
and straggling over the shore,
we were much afraid that they should find out our habitations,
and destroy our flocks of goats: to prevent which,
we sent immediately an Englishman and two Spaniards to drive the goats into the valley where the cave lay;
if there was occasion,
into the cave itself: As to ourselves,
resuming our native courage and prudent conduct,
had we not been divided,
we durst venture to attack an hundred of them;
but before it was very light,
we resolved to send out Friday's father as a spy,
immediately stripping himself naked,
gets among them undiscovered,
and in two hours time brings word,
'they were two parties of two different nations,
who lately having a bloody battle with one another,
happened to land by mere chance on the same island,
to devour their miserable prisoners;
that they were entirely ignorant of any person's inhabiting here;
but rather filled with rage and fury against one another,
that as soon as day light appeared,
there would be a terrible engagement.'
Old Friday had scarce ended his relation,
when we heard an uncommon noise,
and perceived that there was a horrid engagement between the two armies.
"Such was the curiosity of our party,
especially the Englishmen,
that they would not lie close,
tho' Old Friday told them,
'their safety depended upon it;
and that if we had patience,
we should behold the savages kill one another.'
However they used some caution,
by going farther into the woods,
and placing themselves in a convenient place to behold the battle.
"Never could there be a more bloody engagement,
or men of more invincible spirits and prudent conduct,
according to their manner and way of fighting.
It lasted near two hours,
till the party which was nearest our castle began to decline,
and at last to fly from their conquerors.
We were undoubtedly put into a great consternation on this account,
lest they should run into our grove,
and consequently bring us into the like danger.
Hereupon we resolved to kill the first that came,
to prevent discovery,
and that too with our swords,
and the butt end of our muskets,
for fear the report of our guns should be heard.
"And so indeed,
as we thought,
for three of the vanquished army crossing the creek,
ran directly to the place,
as to a thick wood for shelter;
nor was it long before our scout gave us notice of it: as also,
that the victors did not think fit to pursue them.
Upon this I would not suffer them to be slain,
but had them surprised and taken by our party;
afterwards they proved very good servants to us,
being stout young creatures,
and able to do a great deal of work.
The remainder of the conquered savages fled to their canoes,
and put out into the ocean,
while the conquerors,
shouted by way of triumph,
and about three in the afternoon they also embarked for their own nation.
Thus we were freed at once from these savages and our fears,
not perceiving any of these creatures for some considerable time after.
We found two and thirty men dead in the field of battle;
some were slain with long arrows,
which we found sticking in their bodies;
& the rest were killed with great unwieldy wooden swords,
which denoted their vast strength,
and of which we found seventeen,
besides bows and arrows: but we could not find one wounded creature among them alive;
for they either kill their enemies quite,
or carry those wounded away with them.
"This terrible fight tamed the Englishmen for some time,
considering how unfortunate they might have been had they fallen into their hands,
who would not only kill them as enemies,
but also for food,
as we do cattle;
and indeed so much did this nauseate their stomachs,
that it not only made them very sick,
but more tractable to the common necessary business of the whole society,
with the greatest signs of amity and friendship;
that being now all good friends,
we began to consider of circumstances in general;
and the first thing we thought of was,
as we perceived the savages haunted that side of the island,
and there being more retired parts of it,
and yet as well suited to our manner of living,
and equally to our advantage,
we ought not rather to move our place of residence,
& plant it in a much safer place,
both for the security of our corn and cattle.
"After a long debate on this head;
it was resolved,
or rather voted,
not to remove our ancient castle,
and that for this very good reason,
that some time or other we expected to hear from our supreme governor,
Sir) whose messengers not finding us there,
might think the place demolished,
and all his subjects destroyed by the savages.
"As to the next concern relating to our corn and cattle,
we consented to have them removed to the valley where the cave was,
that being most proper and sufficient for both.
But yet when we considered farther,
we altered one part of our resolution,
which was to remove part of our cattle thither and plant only part of our corn there;
so that in case one part was destroyed,
the other might be preserved.
Another resolution we took,
which really had a great deal of prudence in it;
and that was,
in not trusting the three savages whom we had taken prisoners,
with any knowledge of the plantations we had made in the valley,
of what number of cattle we had there,
much less of the cave,
wherein we kept several arms,
and two barrels of powder you left for us at your departure from this island.
But though we could not change our habitation,
we resolved to make it more fortified and more secret.
To this end,
as you planted trees at some distance before the entrance of your palace;
imitating your example,
planted and filled up the whole space of ground,
even to the banks of the creek,
into the very ooze where the tide flowed,
not leaving a place for landing;
and among those I had planted,
they had intermingled so many short ones,
all of which growing wonderfully fast and thick,
a little dog could scarcely find a passage through them.
Nor was this sufficient,
as we thought,
for we did the same to all the ground,
on the right and left hand of us,
even to the top of the hill,
without so much as leaving a passage for ourselves,
except by the ladder;
which being taken down,
nothing but what had wings or witchcraft could pretend to come near us.
And indeed this was exceedingly well-contrived,
especially to serve that occasion for which we afterwards found it necessary.
"Thus we lived two years in a happy retirement,
all this time,
not one visit from the savages.
Indeed one morning we had an alarm,
which put us in some amazement;
for a few of my Spaniards being out very early,
perceived no less than twenty canoes,
as it were coming on shore: upon which returning home,
with great precipitation,
they gave us the alarm,
which obliged us to keep at home all that day and the next,
going out only in the night-time to make our observations;
as good luck would have it,
they were upon another design,
and did not land that time upon the island.
"But now there happened another quarrel between the three wicked Englishmen,
and some of my Spaniards.
--- The occasion was this: One of them being enraged at one of the savages,
whom he had taken prisoner,
for not being able to comprehend something which he was showing him,
snatched up a hatchet in a great fury not to correct,
but to kill him;
yet missing his head gave him such a barbarous --cut in the shoulder,
that he had like to have struck off his arm;
at which one of my good-natured Spaniards interposing between the Englishman and the savage beseeched the former,
not to murder the poor creature,
but this kindness had like to have cost the Spaniard his life,
for the Englishman,
struck at him in the same manner;
which he nimbly and wisely avoiding,
returned suddenly upon him with his shovel,
(being all at work about their corn land),
and very fairly knocked the brutish creature down.
Hereupon another Englishman coming to his fellow's assistance,
laid the good Spaniard on the earth;
when immediately two others coming to his relief were attacked by the third Englishman,
armed with an old cutlass,
who wounded them both.
This uproar soon reached our ears,
when we rushing out upon them,
took the three Englishmen prisoners,
and then our next question was,
what would be done to such mutinous,
and impudent fellows,
that they were mischievious to the highest degree and consequently not safe for the society to let them live among them.
as I was governor in your absence,
so I also took the authority of a judge,
having them brought before me;
I told them,
that if they had been of my country,
I would have hanged every mother's son of them,
but since it was an Englishman (meaning you,
kind Sir,) to whom we were indebted for our preservation and deliverance,
use them with all possible mildness,
but at the same time leave them to the judgment of the other two Englishmen who,
forgetting their resentments,
would deal impartially by them.'
"Hereupon one of his countrymen stood up: -Sir-,
-leave it not for us,
for you may be sensible we have reason to sentence them to the gallows: besides,
and the two others,
proposed to us,
that we might murder you all in your sleep,
which we could not consent to: but knowing their inability,
and your vigilance,
we did not think fit to discover it before now.-
-do you hear what is alledged against you?
What can you say to justify so horrid an action,
as to murder us in cold blood?- So far,
was the wretch from denying it,
that he swore,
-damn him but he would do it still.
But what have we done to you,
-or what will you gain by killing us?
What shall we do to prevent you?
Must we kill you,
or you kill us?
Why will you Seignor Atkins,- said I,
-put us to such an unhappy dilemma,
such a fatal necessity?- But so great a rage did my scoffing and yet severe jest put him into,
that he was going to fly at me and undoubtedly had attempted to kill me if he had been possessed of weapons,
and had not been prevented by three Spaniards.
This unparalleled and villainous carriage,
made us seriously consider what was to be done.
The two Englishmen and the Spaniard,
who had saved the poor Indian's life,
mightily petitioned me to hang one of them,
for an example to the others,
which should be him that had twice attempted to commit murder with his hatchet,
it being at that time thought impossible the poor slave should recover.
But they could never gain my consent to put him to death,
for the reasons above mentioned,
since it was an Englishman (even yourself) who was my deliverer;
and as merciful counsels are most prevailing when earnestly pressed,
so I got them to be of the same opinion as to clemency.
But to prevent them doing us any farther mischief;
we all agreed,
that they should have no weapons,
but be expelled from the society,
to live as they pleased by themselves;
that neither the two Englishmen,
nor the rest of the Spaniards,
should have conversation with them upon any account whatsoever;
that they should be kept from coming within a certain distance of our castle;
and if they dared to offer us any violence,
either by spoiling,
or destroying any of the corn,
belonging to the society,
we would shoot them as freely as we would do beasts of prey,
in whatsoever places we should find them.
"This sentence seemed very just to all but themselves;
like a merciful judge,
I called out to the two honest Englishmen,
-You must consider they ought not to be starved neither: and since it will be some time before they can raise corn and cattle of their own,
let us give them some corn to last them eight months,
and for seed to sow,
by which time they'll raise some for themselves;
let us also bestow upon them six milch goats,
four he ones,
and six kids,
as well for their present support,
as for a further increase;
with tools necessary for their work,
and other things convenient to build them huts:- all which were agreed: but before they took them into possession,
I obliged them solemnly to swear,
never to attempt any thing against us,
or their countrymen for the future.
Thus dismissing them from our society,
They went away,
sullen & refractory,
as though neither willing to go nor stay;
however seeing no remedy,
they took what provision was given them,
proposing to choose a convenient place where they might live by themselves.
"About five days after,
they came to those limits appointed,
in order for more victuals,
and sent me word by one of my Spaniards,
whom they called to,
where they had pitched their tents;
and marked themselves out an habitation and plantation,
at the N.E.
and most remote part of the island.
there they built themselves two very handsome cottages,
resembling our little castle,
being under the side of a mountain,
with some trees already growing on three sides of it;
so that planting a few more,
it would be obscured from sight,
unless particularly sought for.
When these huts were finished,
we gave them some dry goat-skins for bedding and covering;
& upon their giving us fuller assurances of their good behaviour for the future,
we gave them some pease,
and rice for sowing and whatever tools we could spare.
"Six months did they live in this separate condition,
in which they got their first harvest in,
the quantity of which was but small,
because they had planted but little land;
all their plantations being to form,
made it more difficult;
especially as it was a thing out of their element;
and when they were obliged to make their boards and pots,
they could make little or nothing of it.
But the rainy season coming on,
put them into a greater perplexity for want of a cave to keep their corn dry,
and prevent it from spoiling: and so much did this humble them,
that they begged of my Spaniards to help them,
to which the good-natured men readily consented,
and in four days space,
worked a great hole in the side of the hill for them,
large enough for their purpose,
to secure their corn and other things from the rain,
though not comparable to ours,
which had several additional appartments.
"But a new whim possessed these rogues about three quarters of a year after,
which had like to have ruined us,
and themselves too: for it seems,
being tired and weary of this sort of living,
which made them work for themselves,
without hopes of changing their condition,
nothing would serve them,
but that they would make a voyage to the continent,
and try if they could seize upon some of the savages,
and bring them over as slaves,
to do their drudgery,
while they lived at ease and pleasure.
"Indeed the project was not so preposterous,
if they had not gone farther;
but they neither did,
nor proposed any thing,
but what had mischief in the design,
or the event.
these three fellows came down to the limited station,
and humbly desired to be admitted to talk with us,
which we readily granted;
they told us in short,
that -being tired of their manner of living,
and the labour of their hands in such employments,
not being sufficient to procure the necessaries of life,
they only desired one of the canoes we came over in,
with some arms and ammunition for their defence,
and they would seek their fortunes abroad,
and never trouble us any more.- To be sure we were glad enough to get rid of such wretched plagues;
but yet honesty made us ingenuously represent to them,
by what we ourselves had suffered,
the certain destruction they were running into,
either of being starved to death or murdered by the savages.
To this they very audaciously replied,
-that they neither could nor would work: and consequently that they might as well be starved abroad as at home: & neither had they any wives or children to cry after them: nay,
so intent were they upon their voyage,
that if the Spaniards had not given them arms,
so they had but the canoe they would have gone without them.-
"Though we could not well spare our fire arms,
rather than they should go like naked men,
we let them have two muskets,
and three hatchets,
which were thought very sufficient: we gave them also goat's flesh,
a great basket full of dried grapes,
a pot of fresh butter,
a young live kid,
and a large canoe sufficient to carry twenty men.
with a mast made of a long pole,
and a sail of six large goat-skins dried,
having a fair breeze,
and a flood-tide with them,
they merrily sailed away,
the Spaniards calling after them,
no man ever expecting to see them more.
"When they were gone,
the Spaniards and Englishmen would often say to one another,
-O how peaceably do we now live,
since these turbulent fellows have left us!- Nothing could be farther from their thoughts than to behold their faces any more;
and yet scarce two and twenty days had passed over their heads,
but one of the Englishmen,
being abroad a planting,
perceived at a distance,
three men well armed,
approaching towards him.
Away he flies with speed to our castle,
and tells me and the rest,
that we were all undone,
for that strangers were landed upon the island,
and who they were he could not tell;
but added that they were not savages but men habited,
-Why then,- said I,
-we have the less occasion to be concerned,
if they were not Indians,
they must be friends;
for I am sure there is no Christian people upon earth,
but what will do us good rather than harm.- But while we were considering of the event,
up came the three Englishmen,
whose voices we quickly knew,
and so all our admiration of that nature ceased at once.
And our wonder was succeeded by another sort of inquiry,
what could be the occasion of their returning so quickly to the island,
when we little expected,
and much less desired their company?
But as this was better to be related by themselves,
I ordered them to be brought in,
when they gave me the following relation of their voyage.
"After two days sail,
or something less,
they reached land,
where they found the people coming to give them another sort of reception than what they expected or desired;
as the savages were armed with bows and arrows,
they durst not venture on shore,
but steered northward,
six or seven hours,
till they gained an opening,
by which they plainly perceived,
that the land that appeared from this place,
was not the main land,
but an island.
At their entrance into the opening of the sea,
they discovered another island,
on the right hand northward,
and several more lying to the westward;
but being resolved to go on shore some where or other,
they put over to one of the western islands.
Here they found the natives very courteous to them,
giving them several roots and dried fish;
even their women too were as willing to supply them with what they could procure them to eat,
bringing it a great way to them upon their heads.
Among these hospitable Indians they continued some days,
inquiring by signs and tokens,
what nations lay around them;
and were informed,
that there were,
several fierce and terrible people lived every way,
accustomed to eat mankind;
but for themselves they never used such diet,
except those that were taken in battle,
and of them they made a solemn feast.
"The Englishmen inquired how long it was since they had a feast of that kind?
-about two moons ago-,
pointing to the moon,
and then two fingers;
-at this time,
their king had two hundred prisoners,
which were fattening up for the slaughter-.
The Englishmen were mighty desirous of seeing the prisoners,
which the others mistaking,
thought that they wanted some of them for their own food: upon which they beckoned to them,
pointing to the rising,
and then to the setting of the sun;
that by the time it appeared in the east next morning,
they would bring them some: and indeed they were as good as their word;
for by that time they brought eleven men & five women,
just as so many cows & oxen are brought to sea-port towns to victual a ship.
But as brutish as these Englishmen were,
their stomachs turned at the sight.
What to do in this case,
they could not tell: to refuse the prisoner,
would have been the highest affront offered to the savage gentry;
and to dispose of them,
they knew not,
in what manner;
they resolved to accept them,
and so gave them,
one of their hatchets,
an old key,
and six or seven of their bullets;
tho' they were wholly ignorant of,
yet of seemed entirely contented with;
& dragging the poor wretches into the boat,
with their hands bound behind them,
delivered them to the Englishmen.
But this obliged them to put off as soon as they had these presents,
lest the donors should have expected two or three of them to be killed,
and to be invited to dinner the next day;
and so taking leave with all possible respect and thanks,
though neither of them understood what the others said,
they sailed away back to the first island,
and there set eight of the prisoners at liberty.
In their voyage they endeavoured to comfort,
and have some conversation with the poor captives;
but it was impossible to make them sensible of any thing;
and nothing they could say or give,
or do for them,
could make them otherwise persuaded,
but that they were unbound only to be devoured: if they gave them any food,
they thought it was only to fatten them for the slaughter;
or looked at any one more particularly,
the poor creature supposed itself to be the
and even when we brought them to our island,
and began to use them with the greatest humanity and kindness,
yet they expected every day that their new masters would devour them.
did these three strange wanderers conclude their unaccountable relation of their voyage,
which was both amazing and entertaining.
I asked them,
where there new family was?
They told me -they had put them into one of their huts,
and they came to beg some victuals for them-.
made us all long to see them;
and taking Friday's father with us,
leaving only two at our castle,
we came down to behold these poor creatures.
"When we arrived at the hut,
(they being bound again by the Englishmen,
for fear of escaping) we found them stark naked,
expecting their fatal tragedy: there were three lusty men,
with straight and good limbs,
between thirty and five and thirty years old;
and five women,
two of them might be from thirty to forty,
two more not above four and twenty;
and the last,
a comely tall maiden of about seventeen.
all the women were very agreeable,
both in proportion and features,
except that they were tawny,
which their modest behaviour,
and other graces,
made amends for,
when they afterwards came to be clothed.
"This naked appearance,
together with their miserable circumstances,
was no very comfortable sight to my Spaniards,
for their parts,
I may venture,
are men of the best behaviour,
and sweetest nature,
that can possibly be;
for they immediately ordered Friday's father to see if he knew any of them,
or if he understood what they could say.
No sooner did the old Indian appear,
but he looked at them with great seriousness;
as they were not of his nation,
they were utter strangers to him,
and none could understand his speech or signs,
but one woman.
This was enough to answer the design,
which was to assure them they would not be killed,
being fallen into the hands of Christians,
who abhorred such barbarity.
When they were fully satisfied of this,
they expressed their joy by such strange gestures,
and uncommon tones,
as it is not possible for me to describe.
But the woman their interpreter,
was ordered next to enquire,
whether they were content to be servants,
and would work for the men who had brought them hither to save their lives?
(being at this time unbound) they fell a capering and dancing,
one taking this thing upon her shoulders,
and the other that,
that they were willing to do any thing for them.
having women among us,
and dreading that it might occasion some strife,
if not blood,
I asked the three men
'what they would do,
and how they intended to use these creatures,
whether as servants or women?'
One of them very pertly and readily answered,
'they would use them as both,'
said I -as you are your own masters,
I am not going to restrain you from that;
for avoiding dissentions among you,
I would only desire you to engage,
that none of you will take more than one for a woman or wife,
and that having taken this one,
none else should presume to touch her;
for though we have not yet a priestly authority to marry you,
yet it is but reasonable,
that whoever thus takes a woman,
should be obliged to maintain her,
since nobody has any thing to do with her-;
appeared so just to all present,
that it was unanimously agreed to.
The Englishmen then asked my Spaniards,
'whether they designed to take any of them?
but they all answered,
some declaring they had already wives in Spain;
and others that they cared not to join with infidels.
On the reverse,
the Englishmen took each of them a temporary wife,
and so set up a new method of living.
As to Friday's father,
and the three savage servants we had taken in the late battle,
they all lived with me in our ancient castle;
and indeed we supplied the main part of the island with food,
as necessity required.
But the most remarkable part of the story is,
how these Englishmen,
who had been so much at variance,
should agree about the choice of those women;
yet they took a way good enough to prevent quarreling among themselves.
They let the five women in one of their huts,
and going themselves to the other,
drew lots which should have the first choice.
he that had the first lot went to the hut,
and fetched out her he chose;
and it is remarkable,
that he took her that was the most homely and eldest of the number,
which made the rest of the Englishmen exceedingly merry;
the Spaniards themselves could not help but smile at it;
but as it happened,
the fellow had the best thought,
in choosing one fit for application and business;
and indeed she proved the best wife of all the parcel.
"But when the poor creatures perceived themselves placed in a row,
and separated one by one,
they were again seized with an unspeakable terror,
as now thinking they were going to be slain in earnest;
and when the Englishmen came to take the first,
the rest set up a lamentable cry,
clasped their arms around her neck,
and hanging about her,
took their last farewell,
as they thought,
in such trembling agonies,
and affectionate embraces,
as would have softened the hardest heart in the world,
and made the driest eyes melt into tears;
nor could they be persuaded but that they were going to die,
till such time as Friday's father made them sensible that the Englishmen had chosen them for their wives,
which ended all their terror and concern upon this occasion.
the Englishmen went to work,
and being assisted by my good natured Spaniards,
in a few hours they,
erected every one of them a new hut or tent for their separate lodging,
since those they had already were,
filled with tools,
They all continued on the north shore of the island,
but separate as before;
the three wicked ones pitching farther off,
and the two honest men nearer our castle;
so that the island seemed to be peopled in three places,
three towns beginning to be built for that purpose.
And here I cannot but remark,
what is very common,
that the two honest men had the worst wives,
(I mean as to industry,
and ingenuity) while the three reprobates enjoyed women of quite contrary qualities.
"But another observation I made was,
in favour of the two honest men,
to show what disparity there is between a diligent application to business,
on the one hand,
and a slothful negligent,
and idle temper,
on the other.
Both of them had the same parcel of ground laid out,
and corn to sow,
sufficient either in their cultivation or their planting.
The two honest men had a multitude of young trees planted about their habitations,
so that when you approached near them,
nothing appeared but a wood,
very pleasing and delightful.
Every thing they did prospered and flourished: their grapes,
planted in order,
seemed as though managed in a vineyard and were infinitely preferable to any of the others.
Nor were they wanting to find out a place of retreat,
but dug a cave in the most retired part of a thick wood,
to secure their wives and children,
with their provision and chiefest goods,
surrounded with innumerable stakes,
and having a most subtle entrance,
in case any mischief should happen either from their fellow countrymen,
or the devouring savages.
"As to the reprobates,
(though I must own they were much more civilized than before) instead of delightful wood surrounding their dwellings,
we found the words of King Solomon too truly verified: -I went by the vineyard of the slothful,
and it was all overgrown with thorns-.
In many places their crop was obliterated by weeds: the hedges having several gaps in them,
the wild goats had got in,
and eaten up the corn,
and here and there was a dead bush to stop these gaps for the present,
which was no more than shutting the stable door after the steed was stolen away.
But as to their wives,
they (as I observed before) were more diligent,
and cleanly enough,
especially in their victuals,
being instructed by one of the honest men,
who had been a cook's mate on board a ship: & very well it was so,
for as he cooked himself,
his companion and their families lived as well as the idle husbands,
who did nothing but loiter about,
fetch turtle's eggs,
catch fish and birds,
and do any thing but work,
and lived accordingly;
while the diligent lived very handsomely and plentifully,
in the most comfortable manner.
I come to lay before your eyes a scene quite different from any thing that ever happened to us before,
and perhaps ever befel you in all the time of your residence on this island.
I shall inform you of its original in the following manner.
there came five or six canoes of Indians on shore,
indisputably upon their old custom of devouring their prisoners.
All that we had to do upon such an occasion,
was to lie concealed,
not having any notice of inhabitants,
might depart quietly after performing their bloody execution: whoever first discovered the savages,
was to give notice to all the three plantations to keep within doors,
and then a proper scout was to be placed to give intelligence of their departure.
But notwithstanding these wise measures,
an unhappy disaster discovered us to the savages,
which was like to have caused the desolation of the whole island;
after the savages were gone off in their canoes,
some of my Spaniards and I looking abroad;
and being inflamed with a curiosity to see what they had been doing,
to our great amazement beheld three savages fast asleep on the ground,
either being gorged,
could not awake when the others went off,
or having wandered too far into the woods,
did not come back in time.
"What to do with them as first,
we could not tell;
as for slaves we had enough of them already;
and as to killing them,
neither Christianity or humanity would suffer us to shed the blood of persons who never did us wrong.
We perceived they had no boat left them to transport them to their own nation;
by letting them wander about,
they might discover us,
and inform the first savages that should happen to land upon the same bloody occasion,
which information might entirely ruin us;
and therefore I counselled my Spaniards to secure them,
and set them about some work or other,
till we could better dispose of them.
"Hereupon we all went back,
and making them awake,
took them prisoners.
It is impossible to express the horror they were in,
especially when bound,
as thinking they were going to be murdered and eaten,
but we soon eased them of their fear as to that point.
We first took them to the bower,
where the chief of our country work lay as keeping goats,
&c and then carried them to the two Englishmen's habitation,
to help them in their business;
but happy it was for us all we did not carry them to our castle,
as by the sequel will appear.
found them work to do;
but whether they did not guard them strictly,
or that they thought they could not better themselves,
I cannot tell;
but certainly one of them ran away into the woods,
and they could not hear of him for a long time after.
"Undoubtedly there was reason enough to suppose he got home in some of the canoes,
the savages returning in about four weeks time,
and going off in the space of two days.
You may be certain,
this thought could not but terrify us exceedingly,
and make us justly conclude,
that the savage would inform his countrymen of our abode in the island,
how few and weak we were in comparison to their numbers & we expected it would not be long before the Englishmen would be attacked in their habitations;
but the savages had not seen their places of safety in the woods,
nor our castle,
which it was a great happiness they did not know.
"Nor were we mistaken in our thoughts upon this occasion: for,
about eight months after this,
with about ten men in each canoe,
came sailing by the north side of the island,
which they were never accustomed to do before,
and landed about an hour after sunrise,
near a mile from the dwelling of the two Englishman,
had the good fortune to discover them about a league off: to that it was an hour before they could come at them.
And now being confirmed in this opinion that they were certainly betrayed,
they immediately bound the two slaves which were left,
causing two of the three men,
whom they brought with the women,
and who proved very faithful to lead them with their wives,
and other conveniences,
into their retired care in the wood,
and there to bind the two fellows hand and foot till they had further orders.
They then opened their fences,
where they kept their milch goats,
and drove them all out,
giving the goats liberty to ramble in the woods,
to make the savages believe that they were wild ones;
but the slave had given a truer information,
which made them come to the very inclosures.
The two frighted men sent the other slave of the three,
who had been with them by accident,
to alarm the Spaniards,
and desire their assistance;
in the mean time they took their arms and ammunition,
and made to the cave where they had sent their wives,
and securing their slaves,
seated themselves in a private place,
from whence they might behold all the actions of the savages.
Nor had they gone far,
when ascending a rising ground,
they could see a little army of Indians approach to their beautiful dwelling,
and in a few moments more,
perceive the same,
and their furniture,
to their unspeakable grief,
burning in a consuming flame,
and when this war done,
they spread here and there,
searching every bush and place for the people,
of whom it was very evident,
they had information.
Upon which the two Englishmen,
not thinking themselves secure where they stood,
retreated about half a mile higher in the country,
that the farther the savages strolled,
there would be less numbers together: upon which they next took their stand by the trunk of an old tree,
very hollow and large,
whence they resolved to see what would offer: but they had not stood long there,
before two savages came running directly towards them,
as though having knowledge of their being there,
who seemed resolved to attack them;
a little farther were three more,
and five more behind them again,
all running the same way.
It cannot be imagined the perplexity the poor men were in at this sight,
thinking that if assistance did not speedily come their cave in the wood would be discovered,
and consequently all therein lost;
so they resolved to resist them there,
to ascend to the top of the trees,
where they might defend themselves as long as their ammunition lasted,
and sell their lives as dear as possible to those devouring savages.
Thus fixed in their resolution,
they next considered,
whether they should fire at the first two,
or wait for the three,
and so take the middle party,
by which the two first & the five last would be separated.
In this regulation the two savages also confirmed them,
by turning a little to another part of the wood: but the three,
& the five after them,
came directly towards the tree.
Hereupon they resolved to take them in a direct line,
as they approached nearer,
because perhaps the first shot might hit them all three;
and upon this occasion,
the man who was to fire,
charged his piece with three or four bullets.
And thus while they were waiting,
the savages came on,
one of them was the runaway,
who had caused all the mischief;
so they resolved he should not escape,
if they both fired at once.
though they did not fire together,
they were ready charged;
when the first that let fly,
was too good a marksman to miss his aim;
for he killed the foremost outright,
the second (-who was the runaway Indian-) fell to the ground,
being shot through the body,
but not dead and the third was a little wounded in the shoulder,
sitting down on the ground,
fell a screaming in a most fearful manner.
The noise of the guns,
which not only made the most resounding echoes,
from one side to the other,
but raised the birds of all sorts,
fluttering with the most confused noise,
so much terrified the five savages behind that they stood still at first,
like so many inanimate images.
But when all things were in profound silence,
they came to the place where there companions lay;
not being sensible that they were liable to the same fate,
stood over the wounded man,
undoubtedly inquiring the occasion of this sad calamity;
'tis as reasonable to suppose he told them,
that it came by thunder and lightning from the gods,
having never seen or heard of a gun before,
in the whole course of their lives.
By this time the Englishmen,
having loaded their pieces,
fired both together a second time,
when seeing them all fall immediately on the ground,
they thought they had killed every creature of them.
This made them come up boldly before they had charged their guns,
which indeed was a wrong step;
when they came to the place,
they found four alive,
two of them very little wounded,
and one not at all,
which obliged them to fall upon them with their muskets: they first knocked the runaway savage on the head,
and another that was but a little wounded in the arm,
& then put the other languishing wretches out of their pain: while he that was not hurt,
with bended knees and uplifted hands,
made piteous moans,
and signs to them to spare his life;
were they unmerciful to the poor wretch,
but pointed to him to sit down at the root of a tree hard by;
one of the Englishmen,
with a piece of rope twine he had in his pocket,
by mere chance,
tying his two feet fast together,
and his two hands behind him,
they left him there,
making all the haste they could after the other two,
fearing they should find out their cave;
but though they could not overtake them,
they had the satisfaction to perceive them at a distance,
cross a valley towards the sea,
a quite contrary way to their retreat: upon which they returned to the tree,
to look after their prisoner;
but when they came there,
he was gone,
leaving the piece of rope-yarn,
wherewith he was bound,
now they were as much concerned as ever,
as not knowing how near their enemies might be,
or in what numbers.
Immediately they repaired to the cave,
to see if all was well there,
and found every thing safe,
except the women,
who were frightened upon their husbands account,
whom they now loved entirely.
They had not been long here,
before seven of my Spaniards came to assist them;
while the other ten,
and Friday's father,
were gone to defend their bower,
in case the savages should have rambled so far.
There accompanied the seven Spaniards,
one of the three savages that had formerly been taken prisoner;
and with them also that very Indian whom the Englishmen had,
a little before,
left under the tree;
for it seems,
they passed by that way where the slaughter was made,
and so carried along with them that poor wretch that was left bound.
But so many prisoners now becoming a burthen to us,
and fearing the dreadful consequence of their escaping,
most of the Spaniards and English urged the absolute necessity there was of killing them for our common preservation;
the authority I bore,
as a governor,
over-ruled that piece of cruelty;
and then I ordered them to be sent prisoners to the old cave in the valley,
bound hands and feet,
with two Spaniards to guard them.
"So much encouraged were the Englishmen at the approach of the Spaniards,
and so great was their fury against the savages for destroying their habitations,
that they had not patience to stay any longer;
taking five Spaniards along with them,
armed with four muskets,
and a quarter staff,
away they went in pursuit of their enemies.
As they passed by the place where the savages were slain,
it was very easy to be perceived that more of them had been there,
having attempted to carry off their dead bodies,
but found it impracticable.
From a rising ground our party had the mortification to see the smoke that proceeded from their ruins;
when coming farther in flight of the shore,
they plainly perceived that the savages had embarked in their canoes,
and were putting out to sea.
This they were very sorry for,
there being no coming at them to give them a parting salute,
they were glad enough to get clear of such unwelcome guests.
"Thus the two honest,
but unfortunate Englishmen,
being ruined a second time,
and their improvements quite destroyed,
most of my good natured Spaniards helped them to rebuild,
and we all assisted them with needful supplies;
what is more remarkable,
their three mischievous countrymen,
when they heard of it -(which was after all these disasters were over,
they living more remote eastward)- very friendly sympathised with them,
and worked for them several days;
in a little,
their habitations were rebuilt,
their necessities supplied,
and themselves restored to their former tranquility.
"Though the savages had nothing to boast of in this adventure,
-(several canoes being driven ashore,
followed by two drowned creatures,
having undoubtedly met with a storm at sea that very night they departed)- yet it was natural to be supposed,
that those whose better fortune it was to attain their native shore,
would inflame their nation to another ruinous attempt,
with a greater force,
to carry all before them.
so it happened: for about seven months after,
our island was invaded with a most formidable navy,
no less than eight and twenty canoes full of savages,
armed with wooden swords,
bows and arrows,
and such like instruments of war,
landing at the east end of the island.
"You may well,
imagine what consternation our men were in upon this account,
and how speedy they were to execute their resolution,
having only that night's time allowed them.
They knew that since they could not withstand their enemies,
concealment was the only way to procure their safety;
they took down the huts that were built for the two Englishmen,
and drove their flocks of goats together with their own at the bower,
to the old cave in the valley,
leaving as little appearance of inhabitants as possible;
and then posted themselves,
with all their force,
at the plantation of the two men.
As they expected,
so it happened: for early the next morning,
leaving their canoes at the east-end of the island,
came running along the shore,
about two hundred and fifty in number,
as near as could be guessed.
Our army was but little indeed;
and what was our greatest misfortune,
we had not arms sufficient for them.
as to the men,
is an follows: viz.
the three savages,
taken with the five women,
who proved faithful servants,
and three other slaves,
living with the Spaniards.
To arm these they had- 11 -muskets-,
3 -old halberts-,
taken from the sailors whom you reduced.
As to the slaves,
we gave three of them halberts,
and the other three long staves,
with great iron spikes at the end of them,
with hatchets by their sides;
we also had hatchets sticking in our girdles,
besides the fire-arms: nay,
two of the women,
inspired with Amazonian fortitude,
could not be dissuaded from fighting along with their dear husbands,
and if they died,
to die with them,
Seeing their resolution,
we gave them hatchets likewise;
but what pleased them best,
were the bows and arrows (which they dexterously knew how to use) that the Indians had left behind them,
after their memorable battle one against another-.
"Over this army,
which though little,
was of great intrepidity,
I was constituted chief general and commander: and knowing Will Atkins,
though exceedingly wicked,
yet a man of invincible courage,
I gave him the power of commanding under me: he had six men with their muskets loaded with six or seven bullets a-piece,
and were planted just behind a small thicket of bushes,
as an advanced guard,
having orders to let the first pass by;
when he fired into the middle of them,
making a nimble retreat round a part of the wood,
and so come in the rear of the Spaniards,
who were shaded by a thicket of trees: for though the savages came on with the fierceness of lions,
yet they wanted the subtility of foxes,
being out of all manner of order,
and straggling in heaps every way: and,
when Will Atkins,
after fifty of the savages had passed by,
had ordered three of his men to give fire,
so great was their consternation,
to see so many men killed and wounded,
and hear such a dreadful noise,
and yet knew not whence it came,
that they were frightened to the highest degree: and when the second volley was given,
they concluded no less but that their companions were slain by thunder and lightning from Heaven.
In this notion they would have continued,
had Will Atkins and his men retired,
as soon as they fired,
according to order: or had the rest been near them,
to pour in their shot continually,
their might have been a complete victory obtained: but staying to load their pieces again,
discovered the whole matter.
They were perceived by some of the scattering savages at a distance,
who let fly their arrows among them,
wounded Atkins himself,
and killed his fellow Englishman,
and one of the Indians taken with the women.
Our party did not fail to answer them,
and in their retreat killed about twenty savages.
Here I cannot but take notice of our poor dying slave,
tho' stopt from his retreat by a fatal arrow,
yet with his staff and hatchet,
desperately and gallantly assailed his pursuers,
and killed five of the savages,
before his life submitted to a multiplicity of wounds.
Nor is the cruelty or malice of the Indians to be less remarked,
in breaking the arms,
and heads of the two dead bodies,
with their clubs and wooden swords,
after a most wretched manner.
As Atkins retreated our party advanced,
to interpose between him and the savages: but after three vollies,
we were obliged to retreat also: for they were so numerous and desperate,
that they came up to our very teeth,
shot their arrows like a cloud,
and their wounded men,
enraged with cruel pain,
fought like madmen.
They did not,
think fit to follow us,
but drawing themselves up in a circle,
they gave two triumphant shouts in token of victory,
though they had the grief to see several of their wounded men bleed to death before them.
"After I had,
drawn up our little army together,
upon a rising ground,
wounded as he was,
would have had us attack the whole body of the savages at once,
I was extremely well pleased with the gallantry of the man: but,
how their wounded men fight;
let them alone till morning,
when they will be faint,
and then we shall have fewer to combat with-.
To which Atkins,
-That's very true,
so shall I too;
and that's the reason I would fight them now I am warm-.
We all answered,
-Seignor Atkins for your part you have behaved very gallantly;
if you are not able to approach the enemy in the morning,
we will fight for you,
till then we think it convenient to wait-,
and so we tarried.
"By the brightness of the moon that night,
we perceived the savages in great disorder about their dead and wounded men.
This made us change our resolution,
and resolve to fall upon them in the night,
if we could give them one volley undiscovered.
This we had a fair opportunity to do,
by one of the two Englishmen leading us round,
between the woods and the sea-side westward,
and turning short south,
came privately to a place where the thickest of them were.
Unheard and unperceived,
eight of us fired among them,
and did dreadful execution;
and in half a minute after,
eight more of us let fly,
killing and wounding abundance of them;
and then dividing ourselves into three bodies,
eight persons in each body we marched from among the trees,
to the very teeth of the enemy,
sending forth the greatest shouts and acclamations.
The savages hearing a different noise from three quarters at once,
stood in the utmost confusion;
but coming in sight of us,
let fly a volley of arrows,
which wounded poor old Friday,
yet happily it did not prove mortal.
We did not,
give them a second opportunity;
but rushing in among them,
we fired three several ways,
and then fell to work with our swords,
and the butt-end of our muskets,
with a fury not to be resisted;
so that with the most dismal screaming and howling they had recourse to their feet,
to save their lives by a speedy flight.
Nor must we forget the valour of the two women;
for they exposed themselves to the greatest dangers,
killed many with their arrows,
and valiantly destroyed several more with their hatchets.
"In fighting these two battles,
we were so much tired,
that we did not then trouble ourselves to pursue them to their canoes,
in which we thought they would presently put to the ocean;
but their happening a dreadful storm at sea,
which continuing all that night,
it not only prevented their voyage,
but dashed several of their boats to pieces against the beach,
and drove the rest so high upon the shore,
that it required infinite labour to get them off.
After our men had taken some refreshment and a little repose,
they resolved early in the morning to go towards the place of their landing,
and see whether they were gone off,
or in what posture they remained.
This necessarily led them to the place of battle,
where several of the savages were expiring,
a sight no way pleasing to generous minds,
to delight in misery,
though obliged to conquer them by the law of arms;
but our own Indian slaves put them out of their pain,
by dispatching them with their hatchets.
coming in view of the remainder of the army,
we found them leaning upon their knees,
which were bended towards their mouth,
and the head between the two hands.
coming within musket shot of them,
I ordered two pieces to be fired without ball,
in order to alarm them,
that we might plainly know,
whether they had the courage to venture another battle,
or were utterly dispirited from such an attempt,
that so we might accordingly manage them.
the prospect took very well;
no sooner did the savages hear the first gun,
and perceive the flash of the second,
but they suddenly started upon their feet in the greatest consternation;
and when we approached towards them,
they ran howling and screaming away up the hill into the country.
"We could rather,
that the weather had permitted them to have gone off to the sea;
but when we considered,
that their escape might occasion the approach of multitudes,
to our utter ruin and dissolution;
we were very well pleased the contrary happened;
and Will Atkins (who,
would not part from us all this while) advised us not to let slip this advantage,
but clapping between them and their boats,
deprive them of the capacity of ever returning to plague the island: -I know-,
-there is but on objection you can make,
that these creatures,
living like beasts in the wood,
may make excursions,
rifle the plantations,
and destroy the tame goats;
we had better to do with an hundred men whom we can kill,
or make slaves of at leisure,
than with an hundred nations,
whom it is impossible we should save ourselves from,
much less subdue-.
and these arguments being approved of,
we set fire to their boats;
and though they were so wet that we could not burn them entirely,
yet we made them incapable for swimming in the seas.
As soon as the Indians perceived what we were doing,
many of them ran out of the woods,
in fight of us,
and kneeling down,
piteously cried out,
if we would but spare their canoes,
they would never trouble us again.
"But all their complaints,
were in vain;
for self-preservation obliging us to the contrary,
we destroyed every one of them that had escaped the fury of the ocean.
When the Indians perceived this,
they raised a lamentable cry,
and ran into the woods,
where they continued ranging about;
making the woods ring with their lamentation.
Here we should have considered,
that making these creatures,
at the same time to have set a sufficient guard upon the plantations: for the savages,
in their ranging about,
found out the bower,
destroyed the fences,
trod the corn down under their feet,
and tore up the vines and grapes.
It is true,
we were always able to fight these creatures;
as they were too swift for us,
and very numerous,
we durst not go out single,
for fear of them;
though that too was needless,
they having no weapons,
nor any materials to make them;
their extremity appeared in a little time after.
[ILLUSTRATION: The Spaniard,
burning the Indian canoes.
-Dr. & Eng.
by A. Carse,
"Though the savages,
as already mentioned,
had destroyed our bower,
and all our corns,
yet we had still left our flock of cattle in the valley,
by the cave,
with some little corn that grew there,
and the plantation of Will Atkins and his companions,
one of whom being killed by an arrow,
they were now reduced to two: it is remarkable that this was the fellow who cut the poor Indian with his hatchet,
and had design to murder me and my countrymen the Spaniards.
As our condition was low,
we came to the resolution to drive the savages up to the farther part of the island,
where no Indians landed,
to kill as many of them as we could,
till we had reduced their number;
and then to give the remainder some corn to plant,
and to teach them how to live by their daily labour,
accordingly we pursued them with our guns,
at the hearing of which they were so terrified,
that they would fall to the ground.
Every day we killed and wounded some of them,
and many were found starved to death,
so that our hearts began to relent at the sight of such miserable objects.
with great difficulty,
taking one of them alive,
and using him with kindness,
we brought him to Old Friday,
who talked to him,
& told him how good we would be to them all,
giving them corn and land to plant and live in,
and present nourishment,
provided they should keep within such bounds as should be allotted them,
and not do prejudice to others: -Go then-,
-and inform your countrymen of this;
if they will not agree to,
every one of them shall be slain-.
"The poor creatures,
being reduced to about thirty-seven,
joyfully accepted the offer,
and earnestly begged for food;
hereupon we sent twelve Spaniards and two Englishmen well armed,
together with Old Friday,
and three Indian slaves were loaded with a large quantity of bread and rice cakes,
with three live goats: and the poor Indians being ordered to sit down on the side of the hill,
they ate the victuals very thankfully,
and have proved faithful to the last,
never trespassing beyond their bounds,
where at this day they quietly and happily remain,
and where we now and then visit them.
They are confined to a neck of land about a mile and a half broad,
and three or four in length,
on the south-east corner of the island,
the sea being before,
and lofty mountains behind them,
free from the appearance of canoes;
and indeed their countrymen never made any inquiry after them.
We gave them twelve hatchets,
and three or four knives;
have taught them to build huts,
make wooden spades,
breed tame goats and milk them,
as likewise to make wicker work,
in which I must ingenuously confess,
they infinitely out do us,
having made themselves several pretty necessaries and fancies,
as also stools,
beds and couches,
no less useful than delightful;
and now they live the most innocent and inoffensive creatures that ever were subdued in the world,
wanting nothing but wives to make them a nation.
have I given you,
according to my ability,
an impartial account of the various transactions that have happened,
in the island since your departure to this day;
and we have great reason to acknowledge the kind providence of Heaven in our merciful deliverance.
When you inspect your little kingdom,
you will find in it some little improvement,
your flocks increased,
and your subjects augmented,
so that from a desolate island,
as this was before your wonderful deliverance upon it,
here is a visible prospect of its becoming a populous and well governed little kingdom,
to your immortal fame and glory."
There is no doubt to suppose but that the preceeding relation of my faithful Spaniard was very agreeable and no less surprising to me,
to the young priest,
and to all who heard it: now were these people less pleased with those necessary utensils that I brought them,
such as the knives,
with which they now adorn their habitations.
So much had they addicted themselves to wicker-work,
prompted by the ingenuity of the Indians,
who assisted them,
that when I viewed the Englishmen's colonies,
they seemed at a distance as though they had lived like bees in a hive: for Will Atkins,
who was now become a very industrious and sober man,
had made himself a tent of basket-work round the outside;
the walls were worked in as a basket,
in pannels or strong squares of thirty-two in number,
standing about seven feet high: in the middle was another,
not above twenty-two paces round,
but much stronger built,
being of an octagonal form,
and in the eight corners stood eight strong poles,
round the top of which he raised a pyramid for the roof,
I assure you,
and joined very well together,
with iron spikes,
which he made himself;
for he had made him a forge,
with a pair of wooden bellows and charcoal for his work,
forming an anvil cut of one of the iron crows,
to work upon,
and in the manner would he make himself hooks,
After he had pitched the roof of his innermost tent,
he made it so firm between the rafters with basket-work,
thatching that over again with rice-straw,
and over that a large leaf of a tree,
that his house was as dry as if it had been tiled or slated.
The outer circuit was covered as a lean-to,
quite round this inner appartment,
laying long rafters from the thirty-two angles to the top posts of the inner house,
about twenty-feet distant,
so that there was a space like a wall between the outer and inner wall,
near twenty feet in breadth.
The inner place he partitioned off with the same wicker-work,
dividing it into six neat apartments every one of which had a door,
first into the entry of the main tent,
and another into the space and walk that was round it,
not only convenient for retreat,
but for family necessaries.
Within the door of the outer circle,
there was a passage directly to the door of the inner house;
on either side was a wicker partition,
and a door,
by which you go into a room twenty-two feet wide,
and about thirty long,
and through that into another of a smaller length;
so that in the outer circle were ten handsome rooms,
six of which were only to be come at through the apartments of the inner tent,
serving as retiring rooms to the respective chambers of the inner circle,
and four large warehouses,
which went in through one another,
two on either hand of the passage that led through the outer door to the inner tent.
nothing could be built more ingeniously,
kept more neat,
or have better conveniences;
and here lived the three families,
their wives and children,
and the widow of the deceased.
As to religion,
the men seldom taught their wives the knowledge of God,
any more than the sailors' custom of swearing by his name.
The greatest improvement their wives had,
they taught them to speak English,
so as to be understood.
None of their children were then above six years old;
they were all fruitful enough;
and I think the cook's mate's wife was big of her sixth child.
When I inquired of the Spaniards about their circumstances while among the savages,
they told me,
-that they abandoned themselves to despair,
reckoning themselves a poor and miserable people,
that had no means put into their hands,
and consequently must soon be starved to death.- They owned,
that they were in the wrong to think so,
and for refusing the assistance that reason offered for their support,
as well as future deliverance,
confessing that grief was a most insignificant passion,
as it looked upon things as without remedy,
and having no hope of things to come;
all which verified this noted proverb,