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The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe Of York, Mariner, Vol. 1 by Daniel Defoe

Part 4 out of 6

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that of wilful murder, if I had committed it; and I gave most humble
thanks on my knees to God, that had thus delivered me from
blood-guiltiness; beseeching him to grant me the protection of his
providence, that I might not fall into the hands of the barbarians, or
that I might not lay my hands upon them, unless I had a more clear call
from Heaven to do it, in defence of my own life.

In this disposition I continued for near a year after this; and so far
was I from desiring an occasion for falling upon these wretches, that in
all that time I never once went up the hill to see whether there were
any of them in sight, or to know whether any of them had been on shore
there or not, that I might not be tempted to renew any of my
contrivances against them, or be provoked, by any advantage which might
present itself, to fall upon them: only this I did, I went and removed
my boat, which I had on the other side of the island, and carried it
down to the east end of the whole island, where I ran it into a little
cove, which I found under some high rocks, and where I knew, by reason
of the currents, the savages durst not, at least would not come, with
their boats, upon any account whatever. With my boat I carried away
every thing that I had left there belonging to her, though not necessary
for the bare going thither, viz. a mast and sail which I had made for
her, and a thing like an anchor, but which, indeed, could not be called
either anchor or grapnel; however, it was the best I could make of its
kind: all these I removed, that there might not be the least shadow of
any discovery, or any appearance of any boat, or of any human
habitation, upon the island. Besides this, I kept myself, as I said,
more retired than ever, and seldom went from my cell, other than upon my
constant employment, viz. to milk my she-goats, and manage my little
flock in the wood, which, as it was quite on the other part of the
island, was quite out of danger; for certain it is, that these savage
people, who sometimes haunted this island, never came with any thoughts
of finding any thing here, and consequently never wandered off from the
coast; and I doubt not but they might have been several times on shore
after my apprehensions of them had made me cautious, as well as before.
Indeed, I looked back with some horror upon the thoughts of what my
condition would have been if I had chopped upon them and been discovered
before that, when, naked and unarmed, except with one gun, and that
loaded often only with small shot, I walked every where, peeping and
peering about the island to see what I could get; what a surprise should
I have been in, if, when I discovered the print of a man's foot, I had,
instead of that, seen fifteen or twenty savages, and found them pursuing
me, and by the swiftness of their running, no possibility of my escaping
them! The thoughts of this sometimes sunk my very soul within me, and
distressed my mind so much, that I could not soon recover it, to think
what I should have done, and how I should not only have been unable to
resist them, but even should not have had presence of mind enough to do
what I might have done; much less what now, after so much consideration
and preparation, I might be able to do. Indeed, after serious thinking
of these things, I would be very melancholy, and sometimes it would last
a great while; but I resolved it all, at last, into thankfulness to that
Providence which had delivered me from so many unseen dangers, and had
kept from me those mischiefs which I could have no way been the agent in
delivering myself from, because I had not the least notion of any such
thing depending, or the least supposition of its being possible. This
renewed a contemplation which often had come to my thoughts in former
time, when first I began to see the merciful dispositions of Heaven, in
the dangers we run through in this life; how wonderfully we are
delivered when we know nothing of it; how, when we are in a quandary,
(as we call it) a doubt or hesitation, whether to go this way, or that
way, a secret hint shall direct us this way, when we intended to go that
way: nay, when sense, our own inclination, and perhaps business, has
called to go the other way, yet a strange impression upon the mind, from
we know not what springs, and by we know not what power, shall over-rule
us to go this way; and it shall afterwards appear, that had we gone that
way which we should have gone, and even to our imagination ought to have
gone, we should have been ruined and lost. Upon these, and many like
reflections, I afterwards made it a certain rule with me, that whenever
I found those secret hints or pressings of mind, to doing or not doing
any thing that presented, or going this way or that way, I never failed
to obey the secret dictate; though I knew no other reason for it than
that such a pressure, or such a hint, hung upon my mind. I could give
many examples of the success of this conduct in the course of my life,
but more especially in the latter part of my inhabiting this unhappy
island; besides many occasions which it is very likely I might have
taken notice of, if I had seen with the same eyes then that I see with
now. But it is never too late to be wise; and I cannot but advise all
considering men, whose lives are attended with such extraordinary
incidents as mine, or even though not so extraordinary, not to slight
such secret intimations of Providence, let them come from what invisible
intelligence they will. That I shall not discuss, and perhaps cannot
account for; but certainly they are a proof of the converse of spirits,
and a secret communication between those embodied and those unembodied,
and such a proof as can never be withstood; of which I shall have
occasion to give some very remarkable instances in the remainder of my
solitary residence in this dismal place.

I believe the reader of this will not think it strange if I confess that
these anxieties, these constant dangers I lived in, and the concern that
was now upon me, put an end to all invention, and to all the
contrivances that I had laid for my future accommodations and
conveniences. I had the care of my safety more now upon my hands than
that of my food. I cared not to drive a nail, or chop a stick of wood
now, for fear the noise I might make should be heard: much less would I
fire a gun, for the same reason: and, above all, I was intolerably
uneasy at making any fire, lest the smoke, which is visible at a great
distance in the day, should betray me. For this reason I removed that
part of my business which required fire, such as burning of pots and
pipes, &c. into my new apartment in the woods; where, after I had been
some time, I found, to my unspeakable consolation, a mere natural cave
in the earth, which went in a vast way, and where, I dare say, no
savage, had he been at the mouth of it, would be so hardy as to venture
in; nor, indeed, would any man else, but one who, like me, wanted
nothing so much as a safe retreat.

The mouth of this hollow was at the bottom of a great rock, where by
mere accident (I would say, if I did not see abundant reason to ascribe
all such things now to Providence,) I was cutting down some thick
branches of trees to make charcoal; and before I go on, I must observe
the reason of my making this charcoal, which was thus: I was afraid of
making a smoke about my habitation, as I said before; and yet I could
not live there without baking my bread, cooking my meat, &c.; so I
contrived to burn some wood here, as I had seen done in England, under
turf, till it became chark, or dry coal: and then putting the fire out,
I preserved the coal to carry home, and perform the other services for
which fire was wanting, without danger of smoke. But this is by the
by:--While I was cutting down some wood here, I perceived that behind a
very thick branch of low brush-wood, or under-wood, there was a kind of
hollow place: I was curious to look in it, and getting with difficulty
into the mouth of it, I found it was pretty large: that is to say,
sufficient for me to stand upright in it, and perhaps another with me:
but I must confess to you that I made more haste out than I did in,
when, looking farther into the place, and which was perfectly dark, I
saw two broad shining eyes of some creature, whether devil or man I knew
not, which twinkled like two stars; the dim light from the cave's mouth
shining directly in, and making the reflection. However, after some
pause, I recovered myself, and began to call myself a thousand fools,
and to think, that he that was afraid to see the devil was not fit to
live twenty years in an island all alone; and that I might well think
there was nothing in this cave that was more frightful than myself. Upon
this, plucking up my courage, I took up a firebrand, and in I rushed
again, with the stick flaming in my hand: I had not gone three steps in,
but I was almost as much frightened as I was before; for I heard a very
loud sigh, like that of a man in some pain, and it was followed by a
broken noise, as of words half-expressed, and then a deep sigh again. I
stepped back, and was indeed struck with such a surprise, that it put me
into a cold sweat; and if I had had a hat on my head, I will not answer
for it, that my hair might not have lifted it off. But still plucking up
my spirits as well as I could, and encouraging myself a little with
considering that the power and presence of God was every where, and was
able to protect me, upon this I stepped forward again, and by the light
of the firebrand, holding it up a little over my head, I saw lying on
the ground a most monstrous, frightful, old he-goat just making his
will, as we say, and gasping for life; and dying, indeed, of mere old
age. I stirred him a little to see if I could get him out, and he
essayed to get up, but was not able to raise himself; and I thought with
myself he might even lie there; for if he had frightened me, so he would
certainly fright any of the savages, if any one of them should be so
hardy as to come in there while he had any life in him.

I was now recovered from my surprise, and began to look round me, when I
found the cave was but very small, that is to say, it might be about
twelve feet over, but in no manner of shape, neither round nor square,
no hands having ever been employed in making it but those of mere
Nature. I observed also that there was a place at the farther side of it
that went in further, but was so low that it required me to creep upon
my hands and knees to go into it, and whither it went I knew not: so
having no candle, I gave it over for that time; but resolved to come
again the next day, provided with candles and a tinder-box, which I had
made of the lock of one of the muskets, with some wild fire in the pan.

Accordingly, the next day I came provided with six large candles of my
own making (for I made very good candles now of goats' tallow, but was
hard set for candle-wick, using sometimes rags or rope-yarn, and
sometimes the dried rind of a weed like nettles;) and going into this
low place, I was obliged to creep upon all fours, as I have said, almost
ten yards; which, by the way, I thought was a venture bold enough,
considering that I knew not how far it might go, nor what was beyond it.
When I had got through the strait, I found the roof rose higher up, I
believe near twenty feet; but never was such a glorious sight seen in
the island, I dare say, as it was, to look round the sides and roof of
this vault or cave; the wall reflected an hundred thousand lights to me
from my two candles. What it was in the rock, whether diamonds, or any
other precious stones, or gold, which I rather supposed it to be, I
knew not. The place I was in was a most delightful cavity or grotto of
its kind, as could be expected, though perfectly dark; the floor was dry
and level, and had a sort of a small loose gravel upon it, so that there
was no nauseous or venomous creature to be seen, neither was there any
damp or wet on the sides or roof: the only difficulty in it was the
entrance; which, however, as it was a place of security, and such a
retreat as I wanted, I thought that was a convenience; so that I was
really rejoiced at the discovery, and resolved, without any delay, to
bring some of those things which I was most anxious about to this place;
particularly, I resolved to bring hither my magazine of powder, and all
my spare arms, viz. two fowling-pieces, for I had three in all, and
three muskets, for of them I had eight in all: so I kept at my castle
only five, which stood ready-mounted, like pieces of cannon, on my
outmost fence; and were ready also to take out upon any expedition. Upon
this occasion of removing my ammunition, I happened to open the barrel
of powder, which I took up out of the sea, and which had been wet; and I
found that the water had penetrated about three or four inches into the
powder on every side, which, caking, and growing hard, had preserved the
inside like a kernel in the shell; so that I had near sixty pounds of
very good powder in the centre of the cask: this was a very agreeable
discovery to me at that time; so I carried all away thither, never
keeping above two or three pounds of powder with me in my castle, for
fear of a surprise of any kind: I also carried thither all the lead I
had left for bullets.

I fancied myself now like one of the ancient giants, which were said to
live in caves and holes in the rocks, where none could come at them; for
I persuaded myself, while I was here, that if five hundred savages were
to hunt me, they could never find me out; or, if they did, they would
not venture to attack me here. The old goat, whom I found expiring, died
in the mouth of the cave the next day after I made this discovery: and I
found it much easier to dig a great hole there, and throw him in and
cover him with earth, than to drag him out; so I interred him there, to
prevent offence to my nose.

I was now in the twenty-third year of my residence in this island; and
was so naturalized to the place, and the manner of living, that could I
have but enjoyed the certainty that no savages would come to the place
to disturb me, I could have been content to have capitulated for
spending the rest of my time there, even to the last moment, till I had
laid me down and died, like the old goat in the cave. I had also arrived
to some little diversions and amusements, which made the time pass a
great deal more pleasantly with me than it did before: as, first, I had
taught my Pol, as I noted before, to speak; and he did it so familiarly,
and talked so articulately and plain, that it was very pleasant to me;
for I believe no bird ever spoke plainer; and he lived with me no less
than six and twenty years: how long he might have lived afterwards I
know not, though I know they have a notion in the Brazils that they
live a hundred years. My dog was a very pleasant and loving companion to
me for no less than sixteen years of my time, and then died of mere old
age. As for my cats, they multiplied, as I have observed, to that
degree, that I was obliged to shoot several of them at first, to keep
them from devouring me and all I had; but, at length, when the two old
ones I brought with me were gone, and after some time continually
driving them from me, and letting them have no provision with me, they
all ran wild into the woods, except two or three favourites, which I
kept tame, and whose young, when they had any, I always drowned; and
these were part of my family. Besides these, I always kept two or three
household kids about me, whom I taught to feed out of my hand; and I had
two more parrots, which talked pretty well, and would all call Robin
Crusoe, but none like my first; nor, indeed, did I take the pains with
any of them that I had done with him. I had also several tame sea-fowls,
whose names I knew not, that I caught upon the shore, and cut their
wings; and the little stakes which I had planted before my castle wall
being now grown up to a good thick grove, these fowls all lived among
these low trees, and bred there, which was very agreeable to me; so
that, as I said above, I began to be very well contented with the life I
led, if I could have been secured from the dread of the savages. But it
was otherwise directed; and it may not be amiss for all people who shall
meet with my story, to make this just observation from it, viz. How
frequently, in the course of our lives, the evil which in itself we seek
most to shun, and which, when we are, fallen into, is the most dreadful
to us, is oftentimes the very means or door of our deliverance, by which
alone we can be raised again from the affliction we are fallen into. I
could give many examples of this in the course of my unaccountable life;
but in nothing was it more particularly remarkable than in the
circumstances of my last years of solitary residence in this island.

It was now the month of December, as I said above, in my twenty-third
year; and this, being the southern solstice (for winter I cannot call
it,) was the particular time of my harvest, and required my being pretty
much abroad in the fields: when going out pretty early in the morning,
even before it was thorough daylight, I was surprised with seeing a
light of some fire upon the shore, at a distance from me of about two
miles, towards the end of the island where I had observed some savages
had been, as before, and not on the other side; but, to my great
affliction, it was on my side of the island.

I was indeed terribly surprised at the sight, and stopped short within
my grove, not daring to go out, lest I might be surprised, and yet I had
no more peace within, from the apprehensions I had that if these
savages, in rambling over the island, should find my corn standing or
cut, or any of my works and improvements, they would immediately
conclude that there were people in the place, and would then never give
over till they had found me out. In this extremity, I went back directly
to my castle, pulled up the ladder after me, and made all things without
look as wild and natural as I could.

Then I prepared myself within, putting myself in a posture of defence:
I loaded all my cannon, as I called them, that is to say, my muskets,
which were mounted upon my new fortification, and all my pistols, and
resolved to defend myself to the last gasp; not forgetting seriously to
commend myself to the divine protection, and earnestly to pray to God to
deliver me out of the hands of the barbarians. I continued in this
posture about two hours; and began to be mighty impatient for
intelligence abroad, for I had no spies to send out. After sitting
awhile longer, and musing what I should do in this, I was not able to
bear sitting in ignorance any longer; so setting up my ladder to the
side of the hill, where there was a flat place, as I observed before,
and then pulling the ladder up after me, I set it up again, and mounted
to the top of the hill; and pulling out my perspective-glass, which I
had taken on purpose, I laid me down flat on my belly on the ground, and
began to look for the place. I presently found there were no less than
nine naked savages, sitting round a small fire they had made, not to
warm them, for they had no need of that, the weather being extremely
hot, but, as I supposed, to dress some of their barbarous diet of human
flesh, which they had brought with them, whether alive or dead, I
could not tell.

They had two canoes with them, which they had hauled up upon the shore;
and as it was then tide of ebb, they seemed to me to wait for the return
of the flood to go away again. It is not easy to imagine what confusion
this sight put me into, especially seeing them come on my side of the
island, and so near me too; but when I considered their coming must be
always with the current of the ebb, I began, afterwards, to be more
sedate in my mind, being satisfied that I might go abroad with safety
all the time of the tide of flood, if they were not on shore before: and
having made this observation, I went abroad about my harvest-work with
the more composure.

As I expected, so it proved; for as soon as the tide made to the
westward, I saw them all take boat, and row (or paddle, as we call it)
away. I should have observed, that for an hour or more before they went
off, they went a dancing; and I could easily discern their postures and
gestures by my glass. I could not perceive, by my nicest observation,
but that they were stark naked, and had not the least covering upon
them; but whether they were men or women, I could not distinguish.

As soon as I saw them shipped and gone, I took two guns upon my
shoulders, and two pistols in my girdle, and my great sword by my side,
without a scabbard, and with all the speed I was able to make, went away
to the hill where I had discovered the first appearance of all; and as
soon as I got thither, which was not in less than two hours (for I could
not go apace, being so loaden with arms as I was,) I perceived there had
been three canoes more of savages at that place; and looking out
farther, I saw they were all at sea together, making over for the main.
This was a dreadful sight to me, especially as, going down to the shore,
I could see the marks of horror, which the dismal work they had been
about had left behind it, viz. the blood, the bones, and part of the
flesh, of human bodies, eaten and devoured by those wretches with
merriment and sport. I was so filled with indignation at the sight, that
I now began to premeditate the destruction of the next that I saw there,
let them be whom or how many soever. It seemed evident to me that the
visits which they made thus to this island were not very frequent, for
it was above fifteen months before any more of them came on shore there
again; that is to say, I neither saw them; nor any footsteps or signals
of them, in all that time; for, as to the rainy seasons, then they are
sure not to come abroad, at least not so far: yet all this while I lived
uncomfortably, by reason of the constant apprehensions of their coming
upon me by surprise: from whence I observe, that the expectation of evil
is more bitter than the suffering, especially if there is no room to
shake off that expectation, or those apprehensions.

During all this time I was in the murdering humour, and took up most of
my hours, which should have been better employed, in contriving how to
circumvent and fall upon them, the very next time I should see them;
especially if they should be divided, as they were the last time, into
two parties: nor did I consider at all, that if I killed one party,
suppose ten or a dozen, I was still the next day, or week, or month, to
kill another, and so another, even _ad infinitum_, till I should be at
length no less a murderer than they were in being man-eaters, and
perhaps much more so. I spent my days now in great perplexity and
anxiety of mind, expecting that I should, one day or other, fall into
the hands of these merciless creatures; and if I did at any time
venture abroad, it was not without looking round me with the greatest
care and caution imaginable. And now I found, to my great comfort, how
happy it was that I had provided a tame flock or herd of goats; for I
durst not, upon any account, fire my gun, especially near that side of
the island where they usually came, lest I should alarm the savages; and
if they had fled from me now, I was sure to have them come again, with
perhaps two or three hundred canoes with them, in a few days, and then I
knew what to expect. However, I wore out a year and three months more
before I ever saw any more of the savages, and then I found them again,
as I shall soon observe. It is true, they might have been there once or
twice, but either they made no stay, or at least I did not see them: but
in the month of May, as near as I could calculate, and in my four and
twentieth year, I had a very strange encounter with them; of which in
its place.

The perturbation of my mind, during this fifteen or sixteen months'
interval, was very great; I slept unquiet, dreamed always frightful
dreams, and often started out of my sleep in the night: in the day great
troubles overwhelmed my mind; and in the night, I dreamed often of
killing the savages, and of the reasons why I might justify the doing of
it. But, to wave all this for a while.--It was in the middle of May, on
the sixteenth day, I think, as well as my poor wooden calendar would
reckon, for I marked all upon the post still; I say, it was on the
sixteenth of May that it blew a very great storm of wind all day, with a
great deal of lightning and thunder, and a very foul night it was after
it. I knew not what was the particular occasion of it, but as I was
reading in the Bible, and taken up with very serious thoughts about my
present condition, I was surprised with the noise of a gun, as I
thought, fired at sea. This was, to be sure, a surprise quite of a
different nature from any I had met with before; for the notions this
put into my thoughts were quite of another kind. I started up in the
greatest haste imaginable, and, in a trice, clapped my ladder to the
middle place of the rock, and pulled it after me; and mounting it the
second time, got to the top of the hill the very moment that a flash of
fire bid me listen for a second gun, which accordingly, in about half a
minute, I heard; and, by the sound, knew that it was from that part of
the sea where I was driven down the current in my boat. I immediately
considered that this must be some ship in distress, and that they had
some comrade, or some other ship in company, and fired these guns for
signals of distress, and to obtain help. I had the presence of mind, at
that minute, to think, that though I could not help them, it might be
they might help me: so I brought together all the dry wood I could get
at hand, and making a good handsome pile, I set it on fire upon the
hill. The wood was dry, and blazed freely; and though the wind blew very
hard, yet it burnt fairly out, so that I was certain, if there was any
such thing as a ship, they must needs see it, and no doubt they did; for
as soon as ever my fire blazed up I heard another gun, and after that
several others, all from the same quarter, I plied my fire all night
long, till daybreak; and when it was broad day, and the air cleared up,
I saw something at a great distance at sea, full east of the island,
whether a sail or a hull I could not distinguish, no, not with my glass;
the distance was so great, and the weather still something hazy also; at
least it was so out at sea.

I looked frequently at it all that day, and soon perceived that it did
not move; so I presently concluded that it was a ship at anchor; and
being eager, you may be sure, to be satisfied, I took my gun in my hand,
and ran towards the south side of the island, to the rocks where I had
formerly been carried away with the current; and getting up there, the
weather by this time being perfectly clear, I could plainly see, to my
great sorrow, the wreck of a ship, cast away in the night upon those
concealed rocks which I found when I was out in my boat; and which
rocks, as they checked the violence of the stream, and made a kind of
counter-stream, or eddy, were the occasion of my recovering from the
most desperate, hopeless condition that ever I had been in, all my life.
Thus, what is one man's safety is another man's destruction; for it
seems these men, whoever they were, being out of their knowledge, and
the rocks being wholly under water, had been driven upon them in the
night, the wind blowing hard at E.N.E. Had they seen the island, as I
must necessarily suppose they did not, they must, as I thought, have
endeavoured to have saved themselves on shore by the help of their boat;
but their firing off guns for help, especially when they saw, as I
imagined, my fire, filled me with many thoughts: first, I imagined that
upon seeing my light, they might have put themselves into their boat,
and endeavoured to make the shore; but that the sea going very high,
they might have been cast away: other times I imagined that they might
have lost their boat before, as might be the case many ways; as,
particularly, by the breaking of the sea upon their ship, which many
times obliges men to stave, or take in pieces, their boat, and sometimes
to throw it overboard with their own hands: other times I imagined they
had some other ship or ships in company, who, upon the signals of
distress they had made, had taken them up and carried them off: other
times I fancied they were all gone off to sea in their boat, and being
hurried away by the current that I had been formerly in, were carried
out into the great ocean, where there was nothing but misery and
perishing; and that, perhaps, they might by this time think of starving,
and of being in a condition to eat one another.

As all these were but conjectures at best, so, in the condition I was
in, I could do no more than look on upon the misery of the poor men, and
pity them; which had still this good effect on my side, that it gave me
more and more cause to give thanks to God, who had so happily and
comfortably provided for me in my desolate condition; and that of two
ships' companies who were now cast away upon this part of the world, not
one life should be spared but mine. I learned here again to observe,
that it is very rare that the providence of God casts us into any
condition of life so low, or any misery so great, but we may see
something or other to be thankful for, and may see others in worse
circumstances than our own. Such certainly was the case of these men, of
whom I could not so much as see room to suppose any of them were saved;
nothing could make it rational so much as to wish or expect that they
did not all perish there, except the possibility only of their being
taken up by another ship in company; and this was but mere possibility
indeed, for I saw not the least sign or appearance of any such thing. I
cannot explain, by any possible energy of words, what a strange longing
or hankering of desires I felt in my soul upon this sight, breaking out
sometimes thus: "O that there had been but one or two, nay, or but one
soul, saved out of this ship, to have escaped to me, that I might but
have had one companion, one fellow-creature to have spoken to me, and to
have conversed with!" In all the time of my solitary life, I never felt
so earnest, so strong a desire after the society of my fellow-creatures,
or so deep a regret at the want of it.

There are some secret moving springs in the affections, which, when they
are set a going by some object in view, or, though not in view, yet
rendered present to the mind by the power of imagination, that motion
carries out the soul, by its impetuosity, to such violent, eager
embracings of the object, that the absence of it is insupportable. Such
were these earnest wishings that but one man had been saved. I believe I
repeated the words, "O that it had been but one!" a thousand times; and
my desires were so moved by it, that when I spoke the words my hands
would clinch together, and my fingers would press the palms of my
hands, so that if I had had any soft thing in my hand, it would have
crushed it involuntarily; and the teeth in my head would strike
together, and set against one another so strong, that for some time I
could not part them again. Let the naturalists explain these things, and
the reason and manner of them: all I can say to them is, to describe the
fact, which was even surprising to me, when I found it, though I knew
not from whence it proceeded: it was doubtless the effect of ardent
wishes, and of strong ideas formed in my mind, realizing the comfort
which the conversation of one of my fellow-christians would have been to
me.--But it was not to be; either their fate or mine, or both, forbade
it: for, till the last year of my being on this island, I never knew
whether any were saved out of that ship or no; and had only the
affliction, some days after, to see the corpse of a drowned boy come on
shore at the end of the island which was next the shipwreck. He had no
clothes on but a seaman's waistcoat, a pair of open-kneed linen drawers,
and a blue linen shirt; but nothing to direct me so much as to guess
what nation he was of: he had nothing in his pockets but two
pieces-of-eight and a tobacco-pipe;--the last was to me of ten times
more value than the first.

It was now calm, and I had a great mind to venture out in my boat to
this wreck, not doubting but I might find something on board that might
be useful to me: but that did not altogether press me so much as the
possibility that there might be yet some living creature on board, whose
life I might not only save, but might, by saving that life, comfort my
own to the last degree; and this thought clung so to my heart, that I
could not be quiet night or day, but I must venture out in my boat on
board this wreck; and committing the rest to God's providence, I thought
the impression was so strong upon my mind that it could not be resisted,
that it must come from some invisible direction, and that I should be
wanting to myself if I did not go.

Under the power of this impression, I hastened back to my castle,
prepared every thing for my voyage, took a quantity of bread, a great
pot of fresh water, a compass to steer by, a bottle of rum (for I had
still a great deal of that left,) and a basket of raisins: and thus,
loading myself with every thing necessary, I went down to my boat, got
the water out of her, put her afloat, loaded all my cargo in her, and
then went home again for more. My second cargo was a great bag of rice,
the umbrella to set up over my head for a shade, another large pot of
fresh water, and about two dozen of my small loaves, or barley-cakes,
more than before, with a bottle of goat's milk and a cheese: all which,
with great labour and sweat, I carried to my boat; and praying to God to
direct my voyage, I put out; and rowing, or paddling, the canoe along
the shore, came at last to the utmost point of the island on the
north-east side. And now I was to launch out into the ocean, and either
to venture or not to venture. I looked on the rapid currents which ran
constantly on both sides of the island at a distance, and which were
very terrible to me, from the remembrance of the hazard I had been in
before, and my heart began to fail me; for I foresaw that if I was
driven into either of those currents, I should be carried a great way
out to sea, and perhaps out of my reach, or sight of the island again;
and that then, as my boat was but small, if any little gale of wind
should rise, I should be inevitably lost.

These thoughts so oppressed my mind, that I began to give over my
enterprise; and having hauled my boat into a little creek on the shore,
I stepped out, and sat me down upon a rising bit of ground, very pensive
and anxious, between fear and desire, about my voyage; when, as I was
musing, I could perceive that the tide was turned, and the flood come
on; upon which my going was impracticable for so many hours. Upon this,
presently it occurred to me, that I should go up to the highest piece of
ground I could find, and observe, if I could how the sets of the tide,
or currents, lay when the flood came in, that I might judge whether, if
I was driven one way out, I might not expect to be driven another way
home, with the same rapidness of the currents. This thought was no
sooner in my head than I cast my eye upon a little hill, which
sufficiently overlooked the sea both ways, and from whence I had a clear
view of the currents, or sets of the tide, and which way I was to guide
myself in my return. Here I found, that as the current of the ebb set
out close by the south point of the island, so the current of the flood
set in close by the shore of the north side; and that I had nothing to
do but to keep to the north side of the island in my return, and I
should do well enough.

Encouraged with this observation, I resolved, the next morning, to set
out with the first of the tide; and reposing myself for the night in my
canoe, under the great watch-coat I mentioned, I launched out. I first
made a little out to sea, full north, till I began to feel the benefit
of the current, which set eastward, and which carried me at a great
rate; and yet did not so hurry me as the current on the south side had
done before, so as to take from me all government of the boat; but
having a strong steerage with my paddle, I went at a great rate directly
for the wreck, and in less than two hours I came up to it. It was a
dismal sight to look at: the ship, which, by its building, was Spanish,
stuck fast, jammed in between two rocks; all the stern and quarter of
her were beaten to pieces with the sea; and as her forecastle, which
stuck in the rocks, had run on with great violence, her mainmast and
foremast were brought by the board, that is to say, broken short off;
but her bowsprit was sound, and the head and bow appeared firm. When I
came close to her, a dog appeared upon her, who, seeing me coming,
yelped and cried; and as soon as I called him, jumped into the sea to
come to me; I took him into the boat, but found him almost dead with
hunger and thirst. I gave him a cake of my bread, and he devoured it
like a ravenous wolf that had been starving a fortnight in the snow: I
then gave the poor creature some fresh water, with which, if I would
have let him, he would have burst himself. After this, I went on board;
but the first sight I met with was two men drowned in the cook-room, or
forecastle of the ship, with their arms fast about one another. I
concluded, as is indeed probable, that when the ship struck, it being in
a storm, the sea broke so high, and so continually over her, that the
men were not able to bear it, and were strangled with the constant
rushing in of the water, as much as if they had been under water.
Besides the dog, there was nothing left in the ship that had life; nor
any goods, that I could see, but what were spoiled by the water. There
were some casks of liquor, whether wine or brandy I knew not, which lay
lower in the hold, and which, the water being ebbed out, I could see;
but they were too big to meddle with. I saw several chests, which I
believed belonged to some of the seamen; and I got two of them into the
boat, without examining what was in them. Had the stern of the ship been
fixed, and the fore-part broken off, I am persuaded I might have made a
good voyage; for, by what I found in these two chests, I had room to
suppose the ship had a great deal of wealth on board; and, if I may
guess from the course she steered, she must have been bound from Buenos
Ayres, or the Rio de la Plata, in the south part of America, beyond the
Brazils, to the Havanna, in the Gulf of Mexico, and so perhaps to Spain.
She had, no doubt, a great treasure in her, but of no use, at that time,
to any body; and what became of her crew, I then knew not.

I found, besides these chests, a little cask full of liquor, of about
twenty gallons, which I got into my boat with much difficulty. There
were several muskets in the cabin, and a great powder-horn, with about
four pounds of powder in it; as for the muskets, I had no occasion for
them, so I left them, but took the powder-horn. I took a fireshovel and
tongs, which I wanted extremely; as also two little brass kettles, a
copper pot to make chocolate, and a gridiron: and with this cargo, and
the dog, I came away, the tide beginning to make home again; and the
same evening, about an hour within night, I reached the island again,
weary and fatigued to the last degree. I reposed that night in the boat;
and in the morning I resolved to harbour what I had got in my new cave,
and not carry it home to my castle. After refreshing myself, I got all
my cargo on shore, and began to examine the particulars. The cask of
liquor I found to be a kind of rum, but not such as we had at the
Brazils, and, in a word, not at all good; but when I came to open the
chests, I found several things of great use to me: for example, I found
in one a fine case of bottles, of an extraordinary kind, and filled with
cordial waters, fine and very good; the bottles held about three pints
each, and were tipped with silver. I found two pots of very good
succades, or sweetmeats, so fastened also on the top, that the salt
water had not hurt them; and two more of the same, which the water had
spoiled. I found some very good shirts, which were very welcome to me;
and about a dozen and a half of white linen handkerchiefs and coloured
neckcloths; the former were also very welcome, being exceeding
refreshing to wipe my face in a hot day. Besides this, when I came to
the till in the chest, I found there three great bags of
pieces-of-eight, which held about eleven hundred pieces in all; and in
one of them, wrapped up in a paper, six doubloons of gold, and some
small bars or wedges of gold; I suppose they might all weigh near a
pound. In the other chest were some clothes, but of little value; but,
by the circumstances, it must have belonged to the gunner's mate; though
there was no powder in it, except two pounds of fine glazed powder, in
three small flasks, kept, I suppose, for charging their fowling-pieces
on occasion. Upon the whole, I got very little by this voyage that was
of any use to me; for, as to the money, I had no manner of occasion for
it; it was to me as the dirt under my feet; and I would have given it
all for three or four pair of English shoes and stockings, which were
things I greatly wanted, but had none on my feet for many years. I had
indeed got two pair of shoes now, which I took off the feet of the two
drowned men whom I saw in the wreck, and I found two pair more in one of
the chests, which were very welcome to me; but they were not like our
English shoes, either for ease or service, being rather what we call
pumps than shoes. I found in this seaman's chest about fifty
pieces-of-eight in rials, but no gold: I suppose this belonged to a
poorer man than the other, which seemed to belong to some officer. Well,
however, I lugged this money home to my cave, and laid it up, as I had
done that before which I brought from our own ship: but it was a great
pity, as I said, that the other part of this ship had not come to my
share; for I am satisfied I might have loaded my canoe several times
over with money; and, thought I, if I ever escape to England, it might
lie here safe enough till I may come again and fetch it.

Having now brought all my things on shore, and secured them, I went back
to my boat, and rowed or paddled her along the shore to her old
harbour, where I laid her up, and made the best of my way to my old
habitation, where I found every thing safe and quiet. I began now to
repose myself, live after my old fashion, and take care of my family
affairs; and, for a while, I lived easy enough, only that I was more
vigilant than I used to be, looked out oftener, and did not go abroad so
much; and if at any time I did stir with any freedom, it was always to
the east part of the island, where I was pretty well satisfied the
savages never came, and where I could go without so many precautions,
and such a load of arms and ammunition as I always carried with me if I
went the other way. I lived in this condition near two years more; but
my unlucky head, that was always to let me know it was born to make my
body miserable, was all these two years filled with projects and
designs, how, if it were possible, I might get away from this island:
for, sometimes I was for making another voyage to the wreck, though my
reason told me that there was nothing left there worth the hazard of my
voyage; sometimes for a ramble one way, sometimes another; and I believe
verily, if I had had the boat that I went from Sallee in, I should have
ventured to sea, bound any where, I knew not whither. I have been, in
all my circumstances, a _memento_ to those who are touched with the
general plague of mankind, whence, for aught I know, one half of their
miseries flow; I mean that of not being satisfied with the station
wherein God and nature hath placed them: for, not to look back upon my
primitive condition, and the excellent advice of my father, the
opposition to which was, as I may call it, my _original sin_, my
subsequent mistakes of the same kind had been the means of my coming
into this miserable condition; for had that Providence, which so happily
seated me at the Brazils as a planter, blessed me with confined desires,
and I could have been contented to have gone on gradually, I might have
been, by this time, I mean in the time of my being in this island, one
of the most considerable planters in the Brazils; nay, I am persuaded,
that by the improvements I had made in that little time I lived there,
and the increase I should probably have made if I had remained, I might
have been worth a hundred thousand moidores: and what business had I to
leave a settled fortune, a well-stocked plantation, improving and
increasing, to turn supercargo to Guinea to fetch negroes, when patience
and time would have so increased our stock at home, that we could have
bought them at our own door from those whose business it was to fetch
them? and though it had cost us something more, yet the difference of
that price was by no means worth saving at so great a hazard. But as
this is usually the fate of young heads, so reflection upon the folly of
it is as commonly the exercise of more years, or of the dear-bought
experience of time: so it was with me now; and yet so deep had the
mistake taken root in my temper, that I could not satisfy myself in my
station, but was continually poring upon the means and possibility of my
escape from this place: and that I may, with the greater pleasure to the
reader, bring on the remaining part of my story, it may not be improper
to give some account of my first conceptions on the subject of this
foolish scheme for my escape, and how, and upon what foundation I acted.

I am now to be supposed retired into my castle, after my late voyage to
the wreck, my frigate laid up and secured under water, as usual, and my
condition restored to what it was before; I had more wealth, indeed,
than I had before, but was not at all the richer; for I had no more use
for it than the Indians of Peru had before the Spaniards came there.

It was one of the nights in the rainy season in March, the four and
twentieth year of my first setting foot in this island of solitude, I
was lying in my bed, or hammock, awake; very well in health, had no
pain, no distemper, no uneasiness of body, nor any uneasiness of mind,
more than ordinary, but could by no means close my eyes, that is, so as
to sleep; no, not a wink all night long, otherwise than as follows:--It
is impossible to set down the innumerable crowd of thoughts that whirled
through that great thoroughfare of the brain, the memory, in this
night's time: I ran over the whole history of my life in miniature, or
by abridgment, as I may call it, to my coming to this island, and also
of that part of my life since I came to this island. In my reflections
upon the state of my case since I came on shore on this island, I was
comparing the happy posture of my affairs in the first years of my
habitation here, compared to the life of anxiety, fear, and care, which
I had lived in, ever since I had seen the print of a foot in the sand;
not that I did not believe the savages had frequented the island even
all the while, and might have been several hundreds of them at times on
shore there; but I had never known it, and was incapable of any
apprehensions about it; my satisfaction was perfect, though my danger
was the same, and I was as happy in not knowing my danger as if I had
never really been exposed to it. This furnished my thoughts with many
very profitable reflections, and particularly this one: How infinitely
good that Providence is, which has provided, in its government of
mankind, such narrow bounds to his sight and knowledge of things; and
though he walks in the midst of so many thousand dangers, the sight of
which, if discovered to him, would distract his mind and sink his
spirits, he is kept serene and calm, by having the events of things hid
from his eyes, and knowing nothing of the dangers which surround him.

After these thoughts had for some time entertained me, I came to reflect
seriously upon the real danger I had been in for so many years in this
very island, and how I had walked about in the greatest security, and
with all possible tranquillity, even when perhaps nothing but the brow
of a hill, a great tree, or the casual approach of night, had been
between me and the worst kind of destruction, viz. that of falling into
the hands of cannibals and savages, who would have seized on me with the
same view as I would on a goat or a turtle, and have thought it no more
a crime to kill and devour me, than I did of a pigeon or curlew. I would
unjustly slander myself, if I should say I was not sincerely thankful to
my great Preserver, to whose singular protection I acknowledged, with
great humility, all these unknown deliverances were due, and without
which I must inevitably have fallen into their merciless hands.

When these thoughts were over, my head was for some time taken up in
considering the nature of these wretched creatures, I mean the savages,
and how it came to pass in the world, that the wise Governor of all
things should give up any of his creatures to such inhumanity, nay, to
something so much below even brutality itself, as to devour its own
kind: but as this ended in some (at that time) fruitless speculations,
it occurred to me to inquire, what part of the world these wretches
lived in? how far off the coast was, from whence they came? what they
ventured over so far from home for? what kind of boats they had? and why
I might not order myself and my business so, that I might be as able to
go over thither as they were to come to me?

I never so much as troubled myself to consider what I should do with
myself when I went thither; what would become of me, if I fell into the
hands of the savages; or how I should escape from them, if they attacked
me; no, nor so much as how it was possible for me to reach the coast,
and not be attacked by some or other of them, without any possibility of
delivering myself; and if I should not fall into their hands, what I
should do for provision, or whither I should bend my course: none of
these thoughts, I say, so much as came in my way; but my mind was wholly
bent upon the notion of my passing over in my boat to the main land. I
looked upon my present condition as the most miserable that could
possibly be; that I was not able to throw myself into any thing, but
death, that could be called worse; and if I reached the shore of the
main, I might perhaps meet with relief, or I might coast along, as I did
on the African shore, till I came to some inhabited country, and where I
might find some relief; and after all, perhaps, I might fall in with
some Christian ship that might take me in; and if the worst came to the
worst, I could but die, which would put an end to all these miseries at
once. Pray note, all this was the fruit of a disturbed mind, an
impatient temper, made desperate, as it were, by the long continuance of
my troubles, and the disappointments I had met in the wreck I had been
on board of, and where I had been so near obtaining what I so earnestly
longed for, viz. somebody to speak to, and to learn some knowledge from
them of the place where I was, and of the probable means of my
deliverance. I was agitated wholly by these thoughts; all my calm of
mind, in my resignation to Providence, and waiting the issue of the
dispositions of Heaven, seemed to be suspended; and I had, as it were,
no power to turn my thoughts to any thing but to the project of a voyage
to the main; which came upon me with such force, and such an impetuosity
of desire, that it was not to be resisted.

When this had agitated my thoughts for two hours or more, with such
violence that it set my very blood into a ferment, and my pulse beat as
if I had been in a fever, merely with the extraordinary fervour of my
mind about it, nature, as if I had been fatigued and exhausted with the
very thought of it, threw me into a sound sleep. One would have thought
I should have dreamed of it, but I did not, nor of any thing relating
to it: out I dreamed that as I was going out in the morning, as usual,
from my castle, I saw upon the shore two canoes and eleven savages
coming to land, and that they brought with them another savage, whom
they were going to kill, in order to eat him; when, on a sudden, the
savage that they were going to kill jumped away, and ran for his life;
and I thought, in my sleep, that he came running into my little thick
grove before my fortification, to hide himself; and that I, seeing him
alone, and not perceiving that the others sought him that way, showed
myself to him, and smiling upon him, encouraged him: that he kneeled
down to me, seeming to pray me to assist him; upon which I showed him my
ladder, made him go up, and carried him into my cave, and he became my
servant: and that as soon as I had got this man, I said to myself, "Now
I may certainly venture to the main land; for this fellow will serve me
as a pilot, and will tell me what to do, and whither to go for
provisions, and whither not to go for fear of being devoured; what
places to venture into, and what to shun." I waked with this thought;
and was under such inexpressible impressions of joy at the prospect of
my escape in my dream, that the disappointments which I felt upon coming
to myself, and finding that it was no more than a dream, were equally
extravagant the other way, and threw me into a very great dejection
of spirits.

Upon this, however, I made this conclusion; that my only way to go about
to attempt an escape was, if possible, to get a savage into my
possession; and, if possible, it should be one of their prisoners whom
they had condemned to be eaten, and should bring hither to kill. But
these thoughts still were attended with this difficulty, that it was
impossible to effect this without attacking a whole caravan of them, and
killing them all; and this was not only a very desperate attempt, and
might miscarry, but, on the other hand, I had greatly scrupled the
lawfulness of it to myself; and my heart trembled at the thoughts of
shedding so much blood, though it was for my deliverance. I need not
repeat the arguments which occurred to me against this, they being the
same mentioned before: but though I had other reasons to offer now, viz.
that those men were enemies to my life, and would devour me if they
could; that it was self-preservation, in the highest degree, to deliver
myself from this death of a life, and was acting in my own defence as
much as if they were actually assaulting me, and the like; I say, though
these things argued for it, yet the thoughts of shedding human blood for
my deliverance were very terrible to me, and such as I could by no means
reconcile myself to for a great while. However, at last, after many
secret disputes with myself, and after great perplexities about it (for
all these arguments, one way and another, struggled in my head a long
time,) the eager prevailing desire of deliverance at length mastered all
the rest; and I resolved, if possible, to get one of those savages into
my hands, cost what it would. My next thing was to contrive how to do
it, and this indeed was very difficult to resolve on: but as I could
pitch upon no probable means for it, so I resolved to put myself upon
the watch, to see them when they came on shore, and leave the rest to
the event; taking such measures as the opportunity should present, let
what would be.

With these resolutions in my thoughts, I set myself upon the scout as
often as possible, and indeed so often, that I was heartily tired of it;
for it was above a year and a half that I waited; and for great part of
that time went out to the west end, and to the south-west corner of the
island, almost every day, to look for canoes, but none appeared. This
was very discouraging, and began to trouble me much; though I cannot say
that it did in this case (as it had done some time before) wear off the
edge of my desire to the thing; but the longer it seemed to be delayed,
the more eager I was for it: in a word, I was not at first so careful to
shun the sight of these savages, and avoid being seen by them, as I was
now eager to be upon them. Besides, I fancied myself able to manage one,
nay, two or three savages, if I had them, so as to make them entirely
slaves to me, to do whatever I should direct them, and to prevent their
being able at any time to do me any hurt. It was a great while that I
pleased myself with this affair; but nothing still presented; all my
fancies and schemes came to nothing, for no savages came near me for a
great while.

About a year and a half after I entertained these notions (and by long
musing had, as it were, resolved them all into nothing, for want of an
occasion to put them into execution,) I was surprised, one morning
early, with seeing no less than five canoes all on shore together on my
side the island, and the people who belonged to them all landed, and out
of my sight. The number of them broke all my measures; for seeing so
many, and knowing that they always came four or six, or sometimes more,
in a boat, I could not tell what to think of it, or how to take my
measures, to attack twenty or thirty men single-handed; so lay still in
my castle, perplexed and discomforted: however, I put myself into all
the same postures for an attack that I had formerly provided, and was
just ready for action, if any thing had presented. Having waited a good
while, listening to hear if they made any noise, at length, being very
impatient, I set my guns at the foot of my ladder, and clambered up to
the top of the hill, by my two stages, as usual; standing so, however,
that my head did not appear above the hill, so that they could not
perceive me by any means. Here I observed, by the help of my
perspective-glass, that they were no less than thirty in number; that
they had a fire kindled, and that they had meat dressed. How they had
cooked it I knew not, or what it was; but they were all dancing, in I
know not how many barbarous gestures and figures, their own way,
round the fire.

While I was thus looking on them, I perceived, by my perspective, two
miserable wretches dragged from the boats, where, it seems, they were
laid by, and were now brought out for the slaughter. I perceived one of
them immediately fall, being knocked down, I suppose, with a club or
wooden sword, for that was their way, and two or three others were at
work immediately, cutting him open for their cookery, while the other
victim was left standing by himself, till they should be ready for him.
In that very moment, this poor wretch seeing himself a little at
liberty, and unbound, nature inspired him with hopes of life, and he
started away from them, and ran with incredible swiftness along the
sands, directly towards me, I mean towards that part of the coast where
my habitation was. I was dreadfully frightened, I must acknowledge, when
I perceived him run my way, and especially when, as I thought, I saw him
pursued by the whole body: and now I expected that part of my dream was
coming to pass, and that he would certainly take shelter in my grove:
but I could not depend, by any means, upon my dream for the rest of it,
viz. that the other savages would not pursue him thither, and find him
there. However, I kept my station, and my spirits began to recover, when
I found that there was not above three men that followed him; and still
more was I encouraged when I found that he outstripped them exceedingly
in running, and gained ground of them; so that if he could but hold it
for half an hour, I saw easily he would fairly get away from them all.

There was between them and my castle the creek, which I mentioned often
in the first part of my story, where I landed my cargoes out of the
ship; and this I saw plainly he must necessarily swim over, or the poor
wretch would be taken there: but when the savage escaping came thither,
he made nothing of it, though the tide was then up; but plunging in,
swam through in about thirty strokes, or thereabouts, landed, and ran on
with exceeding strength and swiftness. When the three persons came to
the creek, I found that two of them could swim, but the third could
not, and that, standing on the other side, he looked at the others, but
went no farther, and soon after went softly back again; which, as it
happened, was very well for him in the end. I observed, that the two who
swam were yet more than twice as long swimming over the creek as the
fellow was that fled from them. It came now very warmly upon my
thoughts, and indeed irresistibly, that now was the time to get me a
servant, and perhaps a companion or assistant, and that I was called
plainly by Providence to save this poor creature's life. I immediately
ran down the ladders with all possible expedition, fetched my two guns,
for they were both at the foot of the ladders, as I observed above, and
getting up again, with the same haste, to the top of the hill, I crossed
towards the sea, and having a very short cut, and all down hill, placed
myself in the way between the pursuers and the pursued, hallooing aloud
to him that fled, who, looking back, was at first, perhaps, as much
frightened at me as at them; but I beckoned with my hand to him to come
back; and, in the mean time, I slowly advanced towards the two that
followed; then rushing at once upon the foremost, I knocked him down
with the stock of my piece. I was loth to fire, because I would not have
the rest hear; though, at that distance, it would not have been easily
heard, and being out of sight of the smoke too, they would not have
easily known what to make of it. Having knocked this fellow down, the
other who pursued him stopped, as if he had been frightened, and I
advanced apace towards him: but as I came nearer, I perceived presently
he had a bow and arrow, and was fitting it to shoot at me; so I was
then necessitated to shoot at him first, which I did, and killed him at
the first shot. The poor savage who fled, but had stopped, though he saw
both his enemies fallen and killed, as he thought, yet was so frightened
with the fire and noise of my piece, that he stood stock-still, and
neither came forward nor went backward, though he seemed rather inclined
still to fly, than to come on. I hallooed again to him, and made signs
to come forward, which he easily understood, and came a little way; then
stopped again, and then a little farther, and stopped again; and I could
then perceive that he stood trembling, as if he had been taken prisoner,
and had just been to be killed, as his two enemies were. I beckoned to
him again to come to me, and gave him all the signs of encouragement
that I could think of; and he came nearer and nearer, kneeling down
every ten or twelve steps, in token of acknowledgment for saving his
life. I smiled at him, and looked pleasantly, and beckoned to him to
come still nearer: at length he came close to me; and then he kneeled
down again, kissed the ground, and laid his head upon the ground, and
taking me by the foot, set my foot upon his head; this, it seems, was in
token of swearing to be my slave for ever. I took him up, and made much
of him, and encouraged him all I could. But there was more work to do
yet; for I perceived the savage whom I knocked down was not killed, but
stunned with the blow, and began to come to himself: so I pointed to
him, and showed him the savage, that he was not dead; upon this he spoke
some words to me, and though I could not understand them, yet I thought
they were pleasant to hear; for they were the first sound of a man's
voice that I had heard, my own excepted, for above twenty-five years.
But there was no time for such reflections now; the savage who was
knocked down recovered himself so far as to sit up upon the ground, and
I perceived that my savage began to be afraid; but when I saw that, I
presented my other piece at the man, as if I would shoot him: upon this
my savage, for so I call him now, made a motion to me to lend him my
sword, which hung naked in a belt by my side, which I did. He no sooner
had it, but he runs to his enemy, and, at one blow, cut off his head so
cleverly, no executioner in Germany could have done it sooner or better;
which I thought very strange for one who, I had reason to believe, never
saw a sword in his life before, except their own wooden swords: however,
it seems, as I learned afterwards, they make their wooden swords so
sharp, so heavy, and the wood is so hard, that they will cut off heads
even with them, aye, and arms, and that at one blow too. When he had
done this, he comes laughing to me, in sign of triumph, and brought me
the sword again, and with abundance of gestures, which I did not
understand, laid it down, with the head of the savage that he had
killed, just before me. But that which astonished him most, was to know
how I killed the other Indian so far off: so pointing to him, he made
signs to me to let him go to him; so I bade him go, as well as I could.
When he came to him, he stood like one amazed, looking at him, turning
him first on one side, then on the other, looked at the wound the bullet
had made, which, it seems, was just in his breast, where it had made a
hole, and no great quantity of blood had followed; but he had bled
inwardly, for he was quite dead. He took up his bow and arrows, and came
back; so I turned to go away, and beckoned him to follow me, making
signs to him that more might come after them. Upon this, he made signs
to me that he should bury them with sand, that they might not be seen by
the rest, if they followed; and so I made signs to him again to do so.
He fell to work; and, in an instant, he had scraped a hole in the sand
with his hands, big enough to bury the first in, and then dragged him
into it, and covered him; and did so by the other also: I believe he had
buried them both in a quarter of an hour. Then calling him away, I
carried him, not to my castle, but quite away to my cave, on the farther
part of the island: so I did not let my dream come to pass in that part,
viz. that he came into my grove for shelter. Here I gave him bread and
a bunch of raisins to eat, and a draught of water, which I found he was
indeed in great distress for, by his running; and having refreshed him,
I made signs for him to go and lie down to sleep, showing him a place
where I had laid some rice-straw, and a blanket upon it, which I used to
sleep upon myself sometimes; so the poor creature lay down, and went
to sleep.

He was a comely handsome fellow, perfectly well made, with straight
strong limbs, not too large, tall, and well shaped; and, as I reckon,
about twenty-six years of age. He had a very good countenance, not a
fierce and surly aspect, but seemed to have something very manly in his
face; and yet he had all the sweetness and softness of an European in
his countenance too, especially when he smiled. His hair was long and
black, not curled like wool; his forehead very high and large; and a
great vivacity and sparkling sharpness in his eyes. The colour of his
skin was not quite black, but very tawny; and yet not an ugly, yellow,
nauseous tawny, as the Brazilians and Virginians, and other natives of
America are, but of a bright kind of a dun olive colour, that had in it
something very agreeable, though not very easy to describe. His face was
round and plump; his nose small, not flat like the Negroes; a very good
mouth, thin lips, and his fine teeth well set, and as white as ivory.

After he had slumbered, rather than slept, about half an hour, he awoke
again, and came out of the cave to me, for I had been milking my goats,
which I had in the enclosure just by: when he espied me, he came
running to me, laying himself down again upon the ground, with all the
possible signs of an humble thankful disposition, making a great many
antic gestures to show it. At last, he lays his head flat upon the
ground, close to my foot, and sets my other foot upon his head, as he
had done before; and after this, made all the signs to me of subjection,
servitude, and submission, imaginable, to let me know how he would serve
me so long as he lived. I understood him in many things, and let him
know I was very well pleased with him. In a little time I began to speak
to him, and teach him to speak to me; and, first, I let him know his
name should be FRIDAY, which was the day I saved his life: I called him
so for the memory of the time. I likewise taught him to say Master; and
then let him know that was to be my name: I likewise taught him to say
Yes and No, and to know the meaning of them. I gave him some milk in an
earthen pot, and let him see me drink it before him, and sop my bread in
it; and gave him a cake of bread to do the like, which he quickly
complied with, and made signs that it was very good for him. I kept
there with him all that night; but as soon as it was day, I beckoned to
him to come with me, and let him know I would give him some clothes; at
which he seemed very glad, for he was stark naked. As we went by the
place where he had buried the two men, he pointed exactly to the place,
and showed me the marks that he had made to find them again, making
signs to me that we should dig them up again, and eat them. At this I
appeared very angry, expressed my abhorrence of it, made as if I would
vomit at the thoughts of it, and beckoned with my hand to him to come
away; which he did immediately, with great submission. I then led him up
to the top of the hill, to see if his enemies were gone; and pulling out
my glass, I looked, and saw plainly the place where they had been, but
no appearance of them or their canoes; so that it was plain they were
gone, and had left their two comrades behind them, without any search
after them.

But I was not content with this discovery; but having now more courage,
and consequently more curiosity, I took my man Friday with me, giving
him the sword in his hand, with the bow and arrows at his back, which I
found he could use very dexterously, making him carry one gun for me,
and I two for myself; and away we marched to the place where these
creatures had been; for I had a mind now to get some fuller intelligence
of them. When I came to the place, my very blood ran chill in my veins,
and my heart sunk within me, at the horror of the spectacle; indeed, it
was a dreadful sight, at least it was so to me, though Friday made
nothing of it. The place was covered with human bones, the ground dyed
with their blood, and great pieces of flesh left here and there,
half-eaten, mangled, and scorched; and, in short, all the tokens of the
triumphant feast they had been making there, after a victory over their
enemies. I saw three skulls, five hands, and the bones of three or four
legs and feet, and abundance of other parts of the bodies; and Friday,
by his signs, made me understand that they brought over four prisoners
to feast upon; that three of them were eaten up, and that he, pointing
to himself, was the fourth; that there had been a great battle between
them and their next king, whose subject, it seems, he had been one of,
and that they had taken a great number of prisoners; all which were
carried to several places by those who had taken them in the fight, in
order to feast upon them, as was done here by these wretches upon those
they brought hither.

I caused Friday to gather all the skulls, bones, flesh, and whatever
remained, and lay them together in a heap, and make a great fire upon
it, and burn them all to ashes. I found Friday had still a hankering
stomach after some of the flesh, and was still a cannibal in his nature;
but I discovered so much abhorrence at the very thoughts of it, and at
the least appearance of it, that he durst not discover it: for I had, by
some means, let him know, that I would kill him if he offered it.

When he had done this, we came back to our castle; and there I fell to
work for my man Friday: and, first of all, I gave him a pair of linen
drawers, which I had out of the poor gunner's chest I mentioned, which I
found in the wreck; and which, with a little alteration, fitted him very
well: and then I made him a jerkin of goat's-skin, as well as my skill
would allow (for I was now grown a tolerable good tailor;) and I gave
him a cap, which I made of hare's-skin, very convenient and fashionable
enough: and thus he was clothed for the present, tolerably well, and was
mighty well pleased to see himself almost as well clothed as his master.
It is true, he went awkwardly in these clothes at first; wearing the
drawers was very awkward to him; and the sleeves of the waistcoat
galled his shoulders, and the inside of his arms; but a little easing
them where he complained they hurt him, and using himself to them, he
took to them at length very well.

The next day after I came home to my hutch with him, I began to consider
where I should lodge him; and that I might do well for him, and yet be
perfectly easy myself, I made a little tent for him in the vacant place
between my two fortifications, in the inside of the last and in the
outside of the first. As there was a door or entrance there into my
cave, I made a formal framed door case, and a door to it of boards, and
set it up in the passage, a little within the entrance; and causing the
door to open in the inside, I barred it up in the night, taking in my
ladders too; so that Friday could no way come at me in the inside of my
innermost wall, without making so much noise in getting over that it
must needs waken me; for my first wall had now a complete roof over it
of long poles, covering all my tent, and leaning up to the side of the
hill; which was again laid across with smaller sticks, instead of laths,
and then thatched over a great thickness with the rice-straw, which was
strong, like reeds; and at the hole or place which was left to go in or
out by the ladder, I had placed a kind of trap-door, which, if it had
been attempted on the outside, would not have opened at all, but would
have fallen down, and make a great noise: as to weapons, I took them all
into my side every night. But I needed none of all this precaution; for
never man had a more faithful, loving, sincere servant, than Friday was
to me; without passions, sullenness, or designs, perfectly obliged and
engaged; his very affections were tied to me, like those of a child to a
father; and I dare say, he would have sacrificed his life for the saving
mine, upon any occasion whatsoever: the many testimonies he gave me of
this put it out of doubt, and soon convinced me that I needed to use no
precautions, as to my safety on his account.

This frequently gave me occasion to observe, and that with wonder, that
however it had pleased God, in his providence, and in the government of
the works of his hands, to take from so great a part of the world of his
creatures the best uses to which their faculties and the powers of their
souls are adapted, yet that he has bestowed upon them the same powers,
the same reason, the same affections, the same sentiments of kindness
and obligation, the same passions and resentments of wrongs, the same
sense of gratitude, sincerity, fidelity, and all the capacities of doing
good, and receiving good, that he has given to us; and that when he
pleases to offer them occasions of exerting these, they are as ready,
nay, more ready, to apply them to the right uses for which they were
bestowed, than we are. This made me very melancholy sometimes, in
reflecting, as the several occasions presented, how mean a use we make
of all these, even though we have these powers enlightened by the great
lamp of instruction, the Spirit of God, and by the knowledge of his word
added to our understanding; and why it has pleased God to hide the like
saving knowledge from so many millions of souls, who, if I might judge
by this poor savage, would make a much better use of it than we did.
From hence, I sometimes was led too far, to invade the sovereignty of
Providence, and as it were arraign the justice of so arbitrary a
disposition of things, that should hide that light from some, and reveal
it to others, and yet expect a like duty from both; but I shut it up,
and checked my thoughts with this conclusion: first, That we did not
know by what light and law these should be condemned; but that as God
was necessarily, and, by the nature of his being, infinitely holy and
just, so it could not be, but if these creatures were all sentenced to
absence from himself, it was on account of sinning against that light,
which, as the Scripture says, was a law to themselves, and by such rules
as their consciences would acknowledge to be just, though the foundation
was not discovered to us; and, secondly, That still, as we all are the
clay in the hand of the potter, no vessel could say to him, "Why hast
thou formed me thus?"

But to return to my new companion:--I was greatly delighted with him,
and made it my business to teach him every thing that was proper to make
him useful, handy, and helpful; but especially to make him speak, and
understand me when I spoke: and he was the aptest scholar that ever was;
and particularly was so merry, so constantly diligent, and so pleased
when he could but understand me, or make me understand him, that it was
very pleasant to me to talk to him. Now my life began to be so easy,
that I began to say to myself, that could I but have been safe from more
savages, I cared not if I was never to remove from the place where
I lived.

After I had been two or three days returned to my castle, I thought
that, in order to bring Friday off from his horrid way of feeding, and
from the relish of a cannibal's stomach, I ought to let him taste other
flesh; so I took him out with me one morning to the woods. I went,
indeed, intending to kill a kid out of my own flock, and bring it home
and dress it; but as I was going, I saw a she-goat lying down in the
shade, and two young kids sitting by her. I catched hold of
Friday;--Hold, said I; stand still; and made signs to him not to stir:
immediately I presented my piece, shot, and killed one of the kids. The
poor creature, who had, at a distance, indeed, seen me kill the savage,
his enemy, but did not know, nor could imagine, how it was done, was
sensibly surprised, trembled and shook, and looked so amazed, that I
thought he would have sunk down. He did not see the kid I shot at, or
perceive I had killed it, but ripped up his waistcoat, to feel whether
he was not wounded; and, as I found presently, thought I was resolved to
kill him: for he came and kneeled down to me, and embracing my knees,
said a great many things I did not understand; but I could easily see
the meaning was, to pray me not to kill him.

I soon found a way to convince him that I would do him no harm; and
taking him up by the hand, laughed at him, and pointing to the kid which
I had killed, beckoned to him to run and fetch it, which he did: and
while he was wondering, and looking to see how the creature was killed,
I loaded my gun again. By and by, I saw a great fowl, like a hawk,
sitting upon a tree, within shot; so, to let Friday understand a little
what I would do, I called him to me again, pointed at the fowl, which
was indeed a parrot, though I thought it had been a hawk; I say,
pointing to the parrot, and to my gun, and to the ground under the
parrot, to let him see I would make it fall, I made him understand that
I would shoot and kill that bird; accordingly, I fired, and bade him
look, and immediately he saw the parrot fall. He stood like one
frightened again, notwithstanding all I had said to him; and I found he
was the more amazed, because he did not see me put any thing into the
gun, but thought that there must be some wonderful fund of death and
destruction in that thing, able to kill man, beast, bird, or any thing
near or far off; and the astonishment this created in him was such, as
could not wear off for a long time; and I believe, if I would have let
him, he would have worshipped me and my gun. As for the gun itself, he
would not so much as touch it for several days after; but he would speak
to it, and talk to it, as if it had answered him, when he was by
himself; which, as I afterwards learned of him, was to desire it not to
kill him. Well, after his astonishment was a little over at this, I
pointed to him to run and fetch the bird I had shot, which he did, but
staid some time; for the parrot, not being quite dead, had fluttered
away a good distance from the place where she fell: however, he found
her, took her up, and brought her to me; and as I had perceived his
ignorance about the gun before, I took this advantage to charge the gun
again, and not to let him see me do it, that I might be ready for any
other mark that might present; but nothing more offered at that time: so
I brought home the kid, and the same evening I took the skin off, and
cut it out as well as I could; and having a pot fit for that purpose, I
boiled or stewed some of the flesh, and made some very good broth. After
I had begun to eat some, I gave some to my man, who seemed very glad of
it, and liked it very well; but that which was strangest to him, was to
see me eat salt with it. He made a sign to me that the salt was not good
to eat; and putting a little into his own mouth, he seemed to nauseate
it, and would spit and sputter at it, washing his mouth with fresh water
after it: on the other hand, I took some meat into my mouth without
salt, and I pretended to spit and sputter for want of salt, as fast as
he had done at the salt; but it would not do; he would never care for
salt with his meat or in his broth; at least, not for a great while, and
then but a very little.

Having thus fed him with boiled meat and broth, I was resolved to feast
him the next day with roasting a piece of the kid: this I did, by
hanging it before the fire on a string, as I had seen many people do in
England, setting two poles up, one on each side of the fire, and one
across on the top, and tying the string to the cross stick, letting the
meat turn continually. This Friday admired very much; but when he came
to taste the flesh, he took so many ways to tell me how well he liked
it, that I could not but understand him: and at last he told me, as well
as he could, he would never eat man's flesh any more, which I was very
glad to hear.

The next day, I set him to work to beating some corn out, and sifting it
in the manner I used to do, as I observed before; and he soon understood
how to do it as well as I, especially after he had seen what the
meaning of it was, and that it was to make bread of; for after that I
let him see me make my bread, and bake it too; and in a little time
Friday was able to do all the work for me, as well as I could do
it myself.

I began now to consider, that having two mouths to feed instead of one,
I must provide more ground for my harvest, and plant a larger quantity
of corn than I used to do; so I marked out a larger piece of land, and
began the fence in the same manner as before, in which Friday worked not
only very willingly and very hard, but did it very cheerfully: and I
told him what it was for; that it was for corn to make more bread,
because he was now with me, and that I might have enough for him and
myself too. He appeared very sensible of that part, and let me know that
he thought I had much more labour upon me on his account, than I had for
myself; and that he would work the harder for me, if I would tell him
what to do.

This was the pleasantest year of all the life I led in this place;
Friday began to talk pretty well, and understand the names of almost
every thing I had occasion to call for, and of every place I had to send
him to, and talked a great deal to me; so that, in short, I began now to
have some use for my tongue again, which, indeed, I had very little
occasion for before, that is to say, about speech. Besides the pleasure
of talking to him, I had a singular satisfaction in the fellow himself:
his simple unfeigned honesty appeared to me more and more every day, and
I began really to love the creature; and, on his side, I believe he
loved me more than it was possible for him ever to love any
thing before.

I had a mind once to try if he had any hankering inclination to his own
country again; and having taught him English so well that he could
answer me almost any question, I asked him whether the nation that he
belonged to never conquered in battle? At which he smiled, and said,
"Yes, yes, we always fight the better:" that is, he meant, always get
the better in fight; and so we began the following discourse:

_Master_. You always fight the better; how came you to be taken prisoner
then, Friday?

_Friday_. My nation beat much for all that.

_Master_. How beat? If your nation beat them, how came you to be taken?

_Friday_. They more many than my nation in the place where me was; they
take one, two, three, and me: my nation over-beat them in the yonder
place, where me no was; there my nation take one, two, great thousand.

_Master_. But why did not your side recover you from the hands of your
enemies then?

_Friday_. They run one, two, three, and me, and make go in the canoe; my
nation have no canoe that time.

_Master_. Well, Friday, and what does your nation do with the men they
take? Do they carry them away and eat them, as these did?

_Friday_. Yes, my nation eat mans too; eat all up.

_Master_. Where do they carry them?

_Friday_. Go to other place, where they think.

_Master_. Do they come hither?

_Friday_. Yes, yes, they come hither; come other else place.

_Master_. Have you been here with them?

_Friday_. Yes, I have been here (points to the N.W. side of the island,
which, it seems, was their side.)

By this I understood that my man Friday had formerly been among the
savages who used to come on shore on the farther part of the island, on
the same man-eating occasions he was now brought for; and, some time
after, when I took the courage to carry him to that side, being the same
I formerly mentioned, he presently knew the place, and told me he was
there once when they eat up twenty men, two women, and one child: he
could not tell twenty in English, but he numbered them, by laying so
many stones in a row, and pointing to me to tell them over.

I have told this passage, because it introduces what follows; that after
I had this discourse with him, I asked him how far it was from our
island to the shore, and whether the canoes were not often lost. He told
me there was no danger, no canoes ever lost; but that, after a little
way out to sea, there was a current and wind, always one way in the
morning, the other in the afternoon. This I understood to be no more
than the sets of the tide, as going out or coming in; but I afterwards
understood it was occasioned by the great draft and reflux of the mighty
river Oroonoko, in the mouth or gulf of which river, as I found
afterwards, our island lay; and that this land which I perceived to the
W. and N.W. was the great island Trinidad, on the north point of the
mouth of the river. I asked Friday a thousand questions about the
country, the inhabitants, the sea, the coast, and what nations were
near: he told me all he knew, with the greatest openness imaginable. I
asked him the names of the several nations of his sort of people, but
could get no other name than Caribs: from whence I easily understood,
that these were the Caribbees, which our maps place on the part of
America which reaches from the mouth of the river Oroonoko to Guiana,
and onwards to St. Martha. He told me that up a great way beyond the
moon, that was, beyond the setting of the moon, which must be west from
their country, there dwelt white bearded men, like me, and pointed to my
great whiskers, which I mentioned before; and that they had killed much
mans, that was his word: by all which I understood, he meant the
Spaniards, whose cruelties in America had been spread over the whole
country, and were remembered by all the nations, from father to son.

I inquired if he could tell me how I might go from this island and get
among those white men; he told me, Yes, yes, you may go in two canoe. I
could not understand what he meant, or make him describe to me what he
meant by two canoe; till, at last, with great difficulty, I found he
meant it must be in a large boat, as big as two canoes. This part of
Friday's discourse began to relish with me very well; and from this time
I entertained some hopes that, one time or other, I might find an
opportunity to make my escape from this place, and that this poor savage
might be a means to help me.

During the long time that Friday had now been with me, and that he began
to speak to me, and understand me, I was not wanting to lay a foundation
of religious knowledge in his mind: particularly I asked him one time,
Who made him? The poor creature did not understand me at all, but
thought I had asked him who was his father: but I took it up by another
handle, and asked him who made the sea, the ground we walked on, and the
hills and woods? He told me, it was one old Benamuckee, that lived
beyond all; he could describe nothing of this great person, but that he
was very old, much older, he said, than the sea or the land, than the
moon or the stars. I asked him then, if this old person had made all
things, why did not all things worship him? He looked very grave, and
with a perfect look of innocence said, All things say O to him. I asked
him if the people who die in his country went away any where? He said,
Yes; they all went to Benamuckee: then I asked him whether these they
eat up went thither too? He said, Yes.

From these things I began to instruct him in the knowledge of the true
God: I told him that the great Maker of all things lived up there,
pointing up towards heaven; that he governed the world by the same power
and providence by which he made it; that he was omnipotent, and could do
every thing for us, give every thing to us, take every thing from us;
and thus, by degrees, I opened his eyes. He listened with great
attention, and received with pleasure the notion of Jesus Christ being
sent to redeem us, and of the manner of making our prayers to God, and
his being able to hear us, even in heaven. He told me one day, that if
our God could hear us up beyond the sun, he must needs be a greater God
than their Benamuckee, who lived but a little way off, and yet could not
hear till they went up to the great mountains where he dwelt to speak to
him. I asked him if ever he went thither to speak to him? He said, No;
they never went that were young men; none went thither but the old men,
whom he called their Oowokakee; that is, as I made him explain it to me,
their religious, or clergy; and that they went to say O (so he called
saying prayers,) and then came back, and told them what Benamuckee said.
By this I observed, that there is priestcraft even among the most
blinded, ignorant pagans in the world; and the policy of making a secret
of religion, in order to preserve the veneration of the people to the
clergy, is not only to be found in the Roman, but perhaps among all
religions in the world, even among the most brutish and
barbarous savages.

I endeavoured to clear up this fraud to my man Friday; and told him,
that the pretence of their old men going up to the mountains to say O to
their god Benamuckee was a cheat; and their bringing word from thence
what he said was much more so; that if they met with any answer, or
spake with any one there, it must be with an evil spirit: and then I
entered into a long discourse with him about the devil, the original of
him, his rebellion against God, his enmity to man, the reason of it, his
setting himself up in the dark parts of the world to be worshipped
instead of God, and as God, and the many stratagems he made use of to
delude mankind to their ruin; how he had a secret access to our
passions and to our affections, and to adapt his snares to our
inclinations, so as to cause us even to be our own tempters, and run
upon our destruction by our own choice.

I found it was not so easy to imprint right notions in his mind about
the devil, as it was about the being of a God: nature assisted all my
arguments to evidence to him even the necessity of a great First Cause,
and over-ruling, governing Power, a secret, directing Providence, and of
the equity and justice of paying homage to him that made us, and the
like; but there appeared nothing of this kind in the notion of an evil
spirit; of his original, his being, his nature, and, above all, of his
inclination to do evil, and to draw us in to do so too: and the poor
creature puzzled me once in such a manner, by a question merely natural
and innocent, that I scarce knew what to say to him. I had been talking
a great deal to him of the power of God, his omnipotence, his aversion
to sin, his being a consuming fire to the workers of iniquity; how, as
he had made us all, he could destroy us and all the world in a moment;
and he listened with great seriousness to me all the while. After this,
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 to ruin the kingdom of Christ in the world, and the
like. "Well," says Friday, "but you say God is so strong, so great; is
he not much strong, much might as the devil?"--"Yes, yes," says I,
"Friday, God is stronger than the devil: God is above the devil, and
therefore we pray to God to tread him down under our feet, and enable us
to resist his temptations, and quench his fiery darts."--"But," says he
again, "if God much stronger, much might as the devil, why God no kill
the devil, so make him no more do wicked?" I was strangely surprised at
this question; and, after all, though I was now an old man, yet I was
but a young doctor, and ill qualified for a casuist, or a solver of
difficulties; and, at first, I could not tell what to say; so I
pretended not to hear him, and asked him what he said; but he was too
earnest for an answer, to forget his question, so that he repeated it in
the very same broken words as above. By this time I had recovered myself
a little, and I said, "God will at last punish him severely; he is
reserved for the judgment, and is to be cast into the bottomless pit, to
dwell with everlasting fire." This did not satisfy Friday; but he
returns upon me, repeating my words, "_Reserve at last_! me no
understand: but why not kill the devil now; not kill great ago?"--"You
may as well ask me," said I, "why God does not kill you and me, when we
do wicked things here that offend him: we are preserved to repent and be
pardoned." He mused some time on this: "Well, well," says he, mighty
affectionately, "that well: so you, I, devil, all wicked, all preserve,
repent, God pardon all." Here I was run down again by him to the last
degree; and it was a testimony to me, how the mere notions of nature,
though they will guide reasonable creatures to the knowledge of a God,
and of a worship or homage due to the supreme being of God, as the
consequence of our nature, yet nothing but divine revelation can form
the knowledge of Jesus Christ, and of redemption purchased for us, of a
Mediator of the new covenant, and of an Intercessor at the footstool of
God's throne; I say, nothing but a revelation from Heaven can form these
in the soul; and that, therefore, the gospel of our Lord and Saviour
Jesus Christ, I mean the Word of God, and the Spirit of God, promised
for the guide and sanctifier of his people, are the absolutely necessary
instructors of the souls of men in the saving knowledge of God, and the
means of salvation.

I therefore diverted the present discourse between me and my man, rising
up hastily, as upon some sudden occasion of going out; then sending him
for something a good way off, I seriously prayed to God that he would
enable me to instruct savingly this poor savage; assisting, by his
Spirit, the heart of the poor ignorant creature to receive the light of
the knowledge of God in Christ, reconciling him to himself, and would
guide me to speak so to him from the word of God, as his conscience
might be convinced, his eyes opened, and his soul saved. When he came
again to me, I entered into a long discourse with him upon the subject
of the redemption of man by the Saviour of the world, and of the
doctrine of the gospel preached from heaven, viz. of repentance towards
God, and faith in our blessed Lord Jesus. I then explained to him as
well as I could; why our blessed Redeemer took not on him the nature of
angels, but the seed of Abraham; and how, for that reason, the fallen
angels had no share in the redemption; that he came only to the lost
sheep of the house of Israel, and the like.

I had, God knows, more sincerity than knowledge in all the methods I
took for this poor creature's instruction, and must acknowledge, what I
believe all that act upon the same principle will find, that in laying
things open to him, I really informed and instructed myself in many
things that either I did not know, or had not fully considered before,
but which occurred naturally to my mind upon searching into them, for
the information of this poor savage; and I had more affection in my
inquiry after things upon this occasion than ever I felt before: so
that, whether this poor wild wretch was the better for me or no, I had
great reason to be thankful that ever he came to me; my grief sat
lighter upon me; my habitation grew comfortable to me beyond measure:
and when I reflected, that in this solitary life which I had been
confined to, I had not only been moved to look up to heaven myself, and
to seek to the hand that had brought me here, but was now to be made an
instrument, under Providence, to save the life, and, for aught I knew,
the soul, of a poor savage, and bring him to the true knowledge of
religion, and of the Christian doctrine, that he might know Christ
Jesus, in whom is life eternal; I say, when I reflected upon all these
things, a secret joy ran through every part of my soul, and I frequently
rejoiced that ever I was brought to this place, which I had so often
thought the most dreadful of all afflictions that could possibly have
befallen me.

I continued in this thankful frame all the remainder of my time; and the
conversation which employed the hours between Friday and me was such,
as made the three years which we lived there together perfectly and
completely happy, if any such thing as complete happiness can he formed
in a sublunary state. This savage was now a good Christian, a much
better than I; though I have reason to hope, and bless God for it, that
we were equally penitent, and comforted, restored penitents. We had here
the word of God to read, and no farther off from his Spirit to instruct,
than if we had been in England. I always applied myself, in reading the
Scriptures, to let him know, as well as I could, the meaning of what I
read; and he again, by his serious inquiries and questionings, made me,
as I said before, a much better scholar in the Scripture-knowledge than
I should ever have been by my own mere private reading. Another thing I
cannot refrain from observing here also, from experience in this retired
part of my life, viz. how infinite and inexpressible a blessing it is
that the knowledge of God; and of the doctrine of salvation by Christ
Jesus, is so plainly laid down in the word of God, so easy to be
received and understood, that, as the bare reading the Scripture made me
capable of understanding enough of my duty to carry me directly on to
the great work of sincere repentance for my sins, and laying hold of a
Saviour for life and salvation, to a stated reformation in practice, and
obedience to all God's commands, and this without any teacher or
instructor, I mean human; so the same plain instruction sufficiently
served to the enlightening this savage creature, and bringing him to be
such a Christian, as I have known few equal to him in my life.

As to all the disputes, wrangling, strife, and contention which have
happened in the world about religion, whether niceties in doctrines, or
schemes of church-government, they were all perfectly useless to us,
and, for aught I can yet see, they have been so to the rest of the
world. We had the sure guide to heaven, viz. the word of God; and we
had, blessed be God, comfortable views of the Spirit of God teaching and
instructing us by his word, leading us into all truth, and making us
both willing and obedient to the instruction of his word. And I cannot
see the least use that the greatest knowledge of the disputed points of
religion, which have made such confusions in the world, would have been
to us, if we could have obtained it.--But I must go on with the
historical part of things, and take every part in its order.

After Friday and I became more intimately acquainted, and that he could
understand almost all I said to him, and speak pretty fluently, though
in broken English, to me, I acquainted him with my own history, or at
least so much of it as related to my coming to this place; how I had
lived here, and how long: I let him into the mystery, for such it was to
him, of gunpowder and bullet, and taught him how to shoot. I gave him a
knife; which he was wonderfully delighted with; and I made him a belt,
with a frog hanging to it, such as in England we wear hangers in; and in
the frog, instead of a hanger, I gave him a hatchet, which was not only
as good a weapon, in some cases, but much more useful upon other

I described to him the country of Europe, particularly England, which I
came from; how we lived, how we worshipped God, how we behaved to one
another, and how we traded in ships to all parts of the world. I gave
him an account of the wreck which I had been on board of, and showed
him, as near as I could, the place where she lay; but she was all beaten
in pieces before, and gone. I showed him the ruins of our boat, which we
lost when we escaped, and which I could not stir with my whole strength
then; but was now fallen almost all to pieces. Upon seeing this boat,
Friday stood musing a great while, and said nothing. I asked him what it
was he studied upon? At last, says he, "Me see such boat like come to
place at my nation." I did not understand him a good while; but, at
last, when I had examined farther into it, I understood by him, that a
boat, such as that had been, came on shore upon the country where he
lived; that is, as he explained it, was driven thither by stress of
weather. I presently imagined that some European ship must have been
cast away upon their coast, and the boat might get loose, and drive
ashore; but was so dull, that I never once thought of men making their
escape from a wreck thither, much less whence they might come: so I only
inquired after a description of the boat.

Friday described the boat to me well enough; but brought me better to
understand him when he added with some warmth, "We save the white mans
from drown." Then I presently asked him, if there were any white mans,
as he called them, in the boat? "Yes," he said; "the boat full of white
mans." I asked him how many? He told upon his fingers seventeen, I
asked him then what became of them? He told me, "They live, they dwell
at my nation."

This put new thoughts into my head; for I presently imagined that these
might be the men belonging to the ship that was cast away in the sight
of my island, as I now called it; and who, after the ship was struck on
the rock, and they saw her inevitably lost, had saved themselves in
their boat, and were landed upon that wild shore among the savages. Upon
this, I inquired of him more critically what was become of them; he
assured me they lived still there; that they had been there about four
years; that the savages let them alone, and gave them victuals to live
on. I asked him how it came to pass they did not kill them, and eat
them? He said, "No, they make brother with them;" that is, as I
understood him, a truce; and then he added, "They no eat mans but when
make the war fight;" that is to say, they never eat any men but such as
come to fight with them, and are taken in battle.

It was after this some considerable time, that being upon the top of the
hill, at the east side of the island, from whence, as I have said, I
had, in a clear day, discovered the main or continent of America,
Friday, the weather being very serene, looks very earnestly towards the
main land, and, in a kind of surprise, fells a jumping and dancing, and
calls out to me, for I was at some distance from him. I asked him what
was the matter? "O joy!" says he; "O glad! there see my country, there
my nation!" I observed an extraordinary sense of pleasure appeared in
his face, and his eyes sparkled, and his countenance discovered a
strange eagerness, as if he had a mind to be in his own country again.
This observation of mine put a great many thoughts into me, which made
me at first not so easy about my new man Friday as I was before; and I
made no doubt but that if Friday could get back to his own nation again,
he would not only forget all his religion, but all his obligation to me,
and would be forward enough to give his countrymen an account of me, and
come back perhaps with a hundred or two of them, and make a feast upon
me, at which he might be as merry as he used to be with those of his
enemies, when they were taken in war. But I wronged the poor honest
creature very much, for which I was very sorry afterwards. However, as
my jealousy increased, and held me some weeks, I was a little more
circumspect, and not so familiar and kind to him as before: in which I
was certainly in the wrong too; the honest, grateful creature, having no
thought about it, but what consisted with the best principles, both as a
religious Christian, and as a grateful friend; as appeared afterwards,
to my full satisfaction.

While my jealousy of him lasted, you may be sure I was every day pumping
him, to see if he would discover any of the new thoughts which I
suspected were in him: but I found every thing he said was so honest and
so innocent, that I could find nothing to nourish my suspicion; and, in
spite of all my uneasiness, he made me at last entirely his own again;
nor did he, in the least, perceive that I was uneasy, and therefore I
could not suspect him of deceit.

One day, walking up the same hill, but the weather being hazy at sea, so
that we could not see the continent, I called to him, and said, "Friday,
do not you wish yourself in your own country, your own nation?"--"Yes,"
he said, "I be much O glad to be at my own nation." "What would you do
there?" said I: "would you turn wild again, eat men's flesh again, and
be a savage as you were before?" He looked full of concern, and shaking
his head, said, "No, no, Friday tell them to live good; tell them to
pray God; tell them to eat corn-bread, cattle-flesh, milk; no eat man
again."--"Why then," said I to him, "they will kill you." He looked
grave at that, and then said, "No, no; they no kill me, they willing
love learn." He meant by this, they would be willing to learn. He added,
they learned much of the bearded mans that came in the boat. Then I
asked him if he would go back to them. He smiled at that, and told me
that he could not swim so far. I told him, I would make a canoe for him.
He told me he would go, if I would go with him. "I go!" says I, "why,
they will eat me if I come there."--"No, no," says he, "me make they no
eat you; me make they much love you," He meant, he would tell them how I
had killed his enemies, and saved his life, and so he would make them
love me. Then he told me, as well as he could, how kind they were to
seventeen white men, or bearded men, as he called them, who came on
shore there in distress.

From this time, I confess I had a mind to venture over, and see if I
could possibly join with those bearded men, who, I made no doubt, were
Spaniards and Portuguese: not doubting but if I could, we might find
some method to escape from thence, being upon the continent, and a good
company together, better than I could from an island forty miles off the
shore, and alone, without help. So, after some days, I took Friday to
work again, by way of discourse; and told him I would give him a boat to
go back to his own nation; and accordingly I carried him to my frigate,
which lay on the other side of the island, and having cleared it of
water (for I always kept it sunk in water,) I brought it out, showed it
him, and we both went into it. I found he was a most dexterous fellow at
managing it, and would make it go almost as swift again as I could. So
when he was in, I said to him, "Well, now, Friday, shall we go to your
nation?" He looked very dull at my saying so; which, it seems, was
because he thought the boat too small to go so far: I then told him I
had a bigger; so the next day I went to the place where the first boat
lay which I had made, but which I could not get into the water. He said
that was big enough: but then, as I had taken no care of it, and it had
lain two or three and twenty years there, the sun had split and dried
it, that, it was in a manner rotten. Friday told me such a boat would do
very well, and would carry "much enough vittle, drink, bread;" that was
his way of talking.

Upon the whole, I was by this time so fixed upon my design of going over
with him to the continent, that I told him we would go and make one as
big as that, and he should go home in it. He answered not one word, but
looked very grave and sad. I asked him what was the matter with him? He
asked me again, "Why you angry mad with Friday? what me done?" I asked
him what he meant: I told him I was not angry with him at all. "No
angry!" says he, repeating the words several times, "why send Friday
home away to my nation?"--"Why," says I, "Friday, did not you say you
wished you were there?"--"Yes, yes," says he, "wish be both there; no
wish Friday there, no master there." In a word, he would not think of
going there without me. "I go there, Friday!" says I, "what shall I do
there?" He returned very quick upon me at this: "You do great deal much
good," says he; "you teach wild mans be good, sober, tame mans; you tell
them know God, pray God, and live new life."--"Alas! Friday," says I,
"thou knowest not what thou sayest; I am but an ignorant man
myself."--"Yes, yes," says he, "you teachee me good, you teachee them
good."--"No, no, Friday," says I, "you shall go without me; leave me
here to live by myself, as I did before." He looked confused again at
that word; and running to one of the hatchets which he used to wear, he
takes it up hastily, and gives it to me. "What must I do with this?"
says I to him. "You take kill Friday," says he. "What must I kill you
for?" said I again. He returns very quick, "What you send Friday away
for? Take kill Friday, no send Friday away." This he spoke so earnestly,
that I saw tears stand in his eyes: in a word, I so plainly discovered
the utmost affection in him to me, and a firm resolution in him, that I
told him then, and often after, that I would never send him away from
me, if he was willing to stay with me.

Upon the whole, as I found, by all his discourse, a settled affection to
me, and that nothing should part him from me, so I found all the
foundation of his desire to go to his own country was laid in his ardent
affection to the people, and his hopes of my doing them good; a thing,
which, as I had no notion of myself, so I had not the least thought, or
intention, or desire of undertaking it. But still I found a strong
inclination to my attempting an escape, as above, founded on the
supposition gathered from the discourse, viz. that there were seventeen
bearded men there: and, therefore, without any more delay, I went to
work with Friday, to find out a great tree proper to fell, and make a
large periagua, or canoe, to undertake the voyage. There were trees
enough in the island to have built a little fleet, not of periaguas, or
canoes, but even of good large vessels: but the main thing I looked at
was, to get one so near the water that we might launch it when it was
made, to avoid the mistake I committed at first. At last, Friday pitched
upon a tree; for I found he knew much better than I what kind of wood
was fittest for it; nor can I tell, to this day, what wood to call the
tree we cut down, except that it was very like the tree we call fustic,
or between that and the Nicaragua wood, for it was much of the same
colour and smell. Friday was for burning the hollow or cavity of this
tree out, to make it for a boat, but I showed him how to cut it with
tools; which, after I had showed him how to use, he did very handily:
and in about a month's hard labour we finished it, and made it very
handsome; especially when, with our axes, which I showed him how to
handle, we cut and hewed the outside into the true shape of a boat.
After this, however, it cost us near a fortnight's time to get her
along, as it were inch by inch, upon great rollers into the water; but
when she was in, she would have carried twenty men with great ease.

When she was in the water, and though she was so big, it amazed me to
see with what dexterity, and how swift my man Friday would manage her,
turn her, and paddle her along. So I asked him if he would, and if we
might venture over in her. "Yes," he said, "we venture over in her very
well, though great blow wind." However, I had a farther design that he
knew nothing of, and that was to make a mast and a sail, and to fit her
with an anchor and cable. As to a mast, that was easy enough to get; so
I pitched upon a straight young cedar tree, which I found near the
place, and which there were great plenty of in the island: and I set
Friday to work to cut it down, and gave him directions how to shape and
order it. But as to the sail, that was my particular care. I knew I had
old sails, or rather pieces of old sails enough; but as I had had them
now six and twenty years by me, and had not been very careful to
preserve them, not imagining that I should ever have this kind of use
for them, I did not doubt but they were all rotten, and, indeed, most of
them were so. However, I found two pieces, which appeared pretty good,
and with these I went to work; and with a great deal of pains, and
awkward stitching, you may be sure, for want of needles, I, at length,
made a three-cornered ugly thing, like what we call in England a
shoulder of mutton sail, to go with a boom at bottom, and a little short
sprit at the top, such as usually our ships' long-boats sail with, and
such as I best knew how to manage, as it was such a one I had to the
boat in which I made my escape from Barbary, as related in the first
part of my story.

I was near two months performing this last work, viz. rigging and
fitting my mast and sails; for I finished them very complete, making a
small stay, and a sail, or fore-sail, to it, to assist, if we should
turn to windward; and, which was more than all, I fixed a rudder to the
stern of her to steer with. I was but a bungling shipwright, yet, as I
knew the usefulness, and even necessity of such a thing, I applied
myself with so much pains to do it, that at last I brought it to pass;
though, considering the many dull contrivances I had for it that failed,
I think it cost me almost as much labour as making the boat.

After all this was done, I had my man Friday to teach as to what
belonged to the navigation of my boat; for, though he knew very well how
to paddle a canoe, he knew nothing what belonged to a sail and a rudder;
and was the most amazed when he saw me work the boat to and again in the
sea by the rudder, and how the sail gibbed, and filled this way, or that
way, as the course we sailed changed; I say, when he saw this, he stood
like one astonished and amazed. However, with a little use, I made all
these things familiar to him, and he became an expert sailor, except
that as to the compass; I could make him understand very little of that.
On the other hand, as there was very little cloudy weather, and seldom
or never any fogs in those parts, there was the less occasion for a
compass, seeing the stars were always to be seen by night, and the shore
by day, except in the rainy seasons, and then nobody cared to stir
abroad, either by land or sea.

I was now entered on the seven and twentieth year of my captivity in
this place; though the three last years that I had this creature with me
ought rather to be left out of the account, my habitation being quite of
another kind than in all the rest of the time. I kept the anniversary of
my landing here with the same thankfulness to God for his mercies as at
first; and if I had such cause of acknowledgment at first, I had much
more so now, having such additional testimonies of the care of
Providence over me, and the great hopes I had of being effectually and
speedily delivered; for I had an invincible impression upon my thoughts
that my deliverance was at hand, and that I should not be another year
in this place. I went on, however, with my husbandry; digging, planting,
and fencing, as usual. I gathered and cured my grapes, and did every
necessary thing as before.

The rainy season was, in the mean time, upon me, when I kept more within
doors than at other times. We had stowed our new vessel as secure as we
could, bringing her up into the creek, where, as I said in the
beginning, I landed my rafts from the ship; and hauling her up to the
shore, at high-water mark, I made my man Friday dig a little dock, just
big enough to hold her, and just deep enough to give her water enough to
float in; and then, when the tide was out, we made a strong dam across
the end of it, to keep the water out; and so she lay dry, as to the
tide, from the sea; and to keep the rain off, we laid a great many
boughs of trees, so thick, that she was as well thatched as a house; and
thus we waited for the months of November and December, in which I
designed to make my adventure.

When the settled season began to come in, as the thought of my design
returned with the fair weather, I was preparing daily for the voyage:
and the first thing I did was to lay by a certain quantity of
provisions, being the stores for our voyage: and intended, in a week or
a fortnight's time, to open the dock, and launch out our boat. I was
busy one morning upon something of this kind, when I called to Friday,
and bid him go to the sea-shore, and see if he could find a turtle, or
tortoise, a thing which we generally got once a week, for the sake of
the eggs as well as the flesh. Friday had not been long gone, when he
came running back and flew over my outer-wall, or fence, like one that
felt not the ground, or the steps he set his feet on; and before I had
time to speak to him, he cries out to me, "O master! O master! O sorrow!
O bad!"--"What's the matter, Friday?" says I. "O yonder, there," says
he, "one, two, three canoe; one, two, three!" By this way of speaking, I
concluded there were six; but, on inquiry, I found it was but three.
"Well, Friday," says I, "do not be frightened." So I heartened him up
as well as I could: however, I saw the poor fellow was most terribly
scared; for nothing ran in his head but that they were come to look for
him, and would cut him in pieces, and eat him; and the poor fellow
trembled so, that I scarce knew what to do with him. I comforted him as
well as I could, and told him I was in as much danger as he, and that
they would eat me as well as him. "But," says I, "Friday, we must
resolve to fight them. Can you fight, Friday!"--"Me shoot," says he;
but there come many great number."--No matter for that," said I, again;
"our guns will fright them that we do not kill." So I asked him whether,
if I resolved to defend him, he would defend me, and stand by me, and do
just as I bid him. He said, "Me die, when you bid die, master." So I
went and fetched a good dram of rum and gave him; for I had been so good
a husband of my rum, that I had a great deal left. When he drank it, I
made him take the two fowling-pieces, which we always carried, and
loaded 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; and my two pistols I loaded with a brace of bullets each;
I hung my great sword, as usual, naked by my side, and gave Friday his
hatchet. When I had thus prepared myself, I took my perspective-glass,
and went up to the side of the hill, to see what I could discover; and I
found quickly, by my glass, that there were one and twenty savages,
three prisoners, and three canoes; and that their whole business seemed
to be the triumphant banquet upon these three human bodies; a barbarous
feast indeed! but nothing more than, as I had observed, was usual with
them. I observed also, that they were landed, not where they had done
when Friday made his escape, but nearer to my creek: where the shore was
low, and where a thick wood came almost close down to the sea. This,
with the abhorrence of the inhuman errand these wretches came about,
filled me with such indignation, that I came down again to Friday, and
told him I was resolved to go down to them, and kill them all; and asked
him if he would stand by me. He had now got over his fright, and his
spirits being a little raised with the dram I had given him, he was very
cheerful, and told me, as before, he would die when I bid die.

In this fit of fury, I took and divided the arms which I had charged, as
before, between us: I gave Friday one pistol to stick in his girdle, and
three guns upon his shoulder; and I took one pistol, and the other three
guns, myself; and in this posture we marched out. I took a small bottle
of rum in my pocket, and gave Friday a large bag with more powder and
bullets; and, as to orders, I charged him to keep close behind me, and
not to stir, or shoot, or do any thing, till I bid him; and, in the mean
time, not to speak a word. In this posture, I fetched a compass to my
right hand of near a mile, as well to get over the creek as to get into
the wood, so that I might come within shot of them before I should be
discovered, which I had seen, by my glass, it was easy to do.

While I was making this march, my former thoughts returning, I began to
abate my resolution: I do not mean that I entertained any fear of their
number; for, as they were naked, unarmed wretches, it is certain I was
superior to them; nay, though I had been alone. But it occurred to my
thoughts, what call, what occasion, much less what necessity I was in,
to go and dip my hands in blood, to attack people who had neither done
or intended me any wrong? Who, as to me, were innocent, and whose
barbarous customs were their own disaster; being, in them, a token
indeed of God's having left them, with the other nations of that part of
the world, to such stupidity, and to such inhuman courses; but did not
call me to take upon me to be a judge of their actions, much less an
executioner of his justice; that, whenever he thought fit, he would take
the cause into his own hands, and, by national vengeance, punish them,
as a people, for national crimes; but that, in the mean time, it was
none of my business; that, it was true, Friday might justify it, because
he was a declared enemy, and in a state of war with those very
particular people, and it was lawful for him to attack them; but I could
not say the same with respect to myself. These things were so warmly
pressed upon my thoughts all the way as I went, that I resolved I would
only go and place myself near them, that I might observe their barbarous
feast, and that I would act then as God should direct; but that, unless
something offered that was more a call to me than yet I knew of, I would
not meddle with them.

With this resolution I entered the wood; and, with all possible
weariness and silence, Friday following close at my heels, I marched
till I came to the skirt of the wood, on the side which was next to
them, only that one corner of the wood lay between me and them. Here I
called softly to Friday, and showing him a great tree, which was just at
the corner of the wood, I bade him go to the tree, and bring me word if
he could see there plainly what they were doing. He did so; and came
immediately back to me, and told me they might be plainly viewed there;
that they were all about their fire, eating the flesh of one of their
prisoners, and that another lay bound upon the sand, a little from them,
which, he said, they would kill next, and which fired the very soul
within me. He told me it was not one of their nation, but one of the
bearded men he had told me of, that came to their country in the boat. I
was filled with horror at the very naming the white-bearded man; and,
going to the tree, I saw plainly, by my glass, a white man, who lay upon
the beach of the sea, with his hands and his feet tied with flags, or
things like rushes, and that he was an European, and had clothes on.

There was another tree, and a little thicket beyond it, about fifty
yards nearer to them than the place where I was, which, by going a
little way about, I saw I might come at undiscovered, and that then I
should be within half a shot of them: so I withheld my passion, though I
was indeed enraged to the highest degree; and going back about twenty
paces, I got behind some bushes, which held all the way till I came to
the other tree; and then came to a little rising ground, which gave me a
full view of them, at the distance of about eighty yards.

I had now not a moment to lose, for nineteen of the dreadful wretches
sat upon the ground, all close huddled together, and had just sent the
other two to butcher the poor Christian, and bring him, perhaps, limb by
limb, to their fire; and they were stooping down to untie the bands at
his feet. I turned to Friday--"Now, Friday," said I, "do as I bid thee."
Friday said he would. "Then, Friday," says I, "do exactly as you see me
do; fail in nothing." So I set down one of the muskets and the
fowling-piece upon the ground, and Friday did the like by his; and with
the other musket I took my aim at the savages, bidding him to do the
like: then asking him if he was ready, he said, "Yes." "Then fire at
them," said I; and the same moment I fired also.

Friday took his aim so much better than I, that on the side that he
shot, he killed two of them, and wounded three more; and on my side, I
killed one, and wounded two. They were, you may be sure, in a dreadful
consternation; and all of them who were not hurt jumped upon their feet,
but did not immediately know which way to run, or which way to look, for
they knew not from whence their destruction came. Friday kept his eyes
close upon me, that, as I had bid him, he might observe what I did; so,
as soon as the first shot was made, I threw down the piece, and took up
the fowling-piece, and Friday did the like: he saw me cock and present;
he did the same again. "Are you ready, Friday?" said I.--"Yes," says he.
"Let fly, then," says I, "in the name of God!" and with that, I fired
again among the amazed wretches, and so did Friday; and as our pieces
were now loaden with what I called swan-shot, or small pistol-bullets,
we found only two drop, but so many were wounded, that they ran about
yelling and screaming like mad creatures, all bloody, and most of them
miserably wounded, whereof three more fell quickly after, though not
quite dead.

"Now, Friday," says I, laying down the discharged pieces, and taking up
the musket which was yet loaden, "follow me;" which he did with a great
deal of courage; upon which I rushed out of the wood, and showed myself,
and Friday close at my foot. As soon as I perceived they saw me, I
shouted as loud as I could, and bade Friday do so too; and running as
fast as I could, which, by the way, was not very fast, being loaded with
arms as I was, I made directly towards the poor victim, who was, as I
said, lying upon, the beach, or shore, between the place where they sat
and the sea. The two butchers, who were just going to work with him, had
left him at the surprise of our first fire, and fled in a terrible
fright to the sea-side, and had jumped into a canoe, and three more of
the rest made the same way. I turned to Friday, and bade him step
forwards, and fire at them; he understood me immediately, and running
about forty yards, to be nearer them, he shot at them, and I thought he
had killed them all, for I saw them all fall of a heap into the boat,
though I saw two of them up again quickly: however, he killed two of
them, and wounded the third so, that he lay down in the bottom of the
boat as if he had been dead.

While my man Friday fired at them, I pulled out my knife and cut the
flags that bound the poor victim; and loosing his hands and feet, I
lifted him up, and asked him in the Portuguese tongue, what he was. He
answered in Latin, Christianus; but was so weak and faint that he could
scarce stand or speak. I took my bottle out of my pocket, and gave it
him, making signs that he should drink, which he did; and I gave him a
piece of bread, which he eat. Then I asked him what countryman he was:
and he said, Espagniole; and being a little recovered, let me know, by
all the signs he could possibly make, how much he was in my debt for his
deliverance. "Seignior," said I, with as much Spanish as I could make
up, "we will talk afterwards, but we must fight now: if you have any
strength left, take this pistol and sword, and lay about you." He took
them very thankfully; and no sooner had he the arms in his hands, but,
as if they had put new vigour into him, he flew upon his murderers like
a fury, and had cut two of them in pieces in an instant; for the truth
is, as the whole was a surprise to them, so the poor creatures were so
much frightened with the noise of our pieces, that they fell down for
mere amazement and fear, and had no more power to attempt their own
escape, than their flesh had to resist our shot: and that was the case
of those five that Friday shot at in the boat; for as three of them fell
with the hurt they received, so the other two fell with the fright.

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