Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books

The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe (1808) by Daniel Defoe

Part 9 out of 11

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 1.3 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

whom I so entirely loved and valued, and who, indeed, so well deserved
it, I thought myself not only justifiable before God and man, but would
have been very glad if I could have overset every canoe there, and
drowned every one of them.

I can neither tell how many we killed nor how many we wounded at this
broadside, but sure such a fright and hurry never were seen among such a
multitude; there were thirteen or fourteen of their canoes split and
overset in all, and the men all set a-swimming: the rest, frightened out
of their wits, scoured away as fast as they could, taking but little
care to save those whose boats were split or spoiled with our shot; so I
suppose that many of them were lost; and our men took up one poor
fellow swimming for his life; above an hour after they were all gone.

Our small shot from our cannon must needs kill and wound a great many;
but, in short, we never knew any thing how it went with them; for they
fled so fast that, in three hours, or thereabouts, we could not see
above three or four straggling canoes; nor did we ever see the rest any
more; for a breeze of wind springing up the same evening, we weighed and
set sail for the Brasils.

We had a prisoner indeed, but the creature was so sullen, that he would
neither eat nor speak; and we all fancied he would starve himself to
death; but I took a way to cure him; for I made them take him, and turn
him into the long-boat, and make him believe they would toss him into
the sea again, and so leave him where they found him, if he would not
speak: nor would that do, but they really did throw him into the sea,
and came away from him; and then he followed them, for he swam like a
cork, and called to them in his tongue, though they knew not one word of
what he said. However, at last, they took him in again, and then he
began to be more tractable; nor did I ever design they should drown him.

We were now under sail again; but I was the most disconsolate creature
alive, for want of my man Friday, and would have been very glad to have
gone back to the island, to have taken one of the rest from thence for
my occasion, but it could not be; so we went on. We had one prisoner, as
I have said; and it was a long while before we could make him understand
any thing; but in time, our men taught him some English, and he began to
be a little tractable: afterwards we inquired what country he came from,
but could make nothing of what he said; for his speech was so odd, all
gutturals, and spoken in the throat, in such a hollow and odd manner,
that we could never form a word from him; and we were all of opinion
that they might speak that language as well if they were gagged, as
otherwise; nor could we perceive that they had any occasion either for
teeth, tongue, lips, or palate; but formed their words just as a
hunting-horn forms a tune, with an open throat: he told us, however,
some time after, when we had taught him to speak a little English, that
they were going, with their kings, to fight a great battle. When he said
kings, we asked him, how many kings? He said, there were five nation (we
could not make him understand the plural _s_,) and that they all joined
to go against two nation. We asked him, What made them come up to us? He
said, "To makee te great wonder look."--Where it is to be observed, that
all those natives, as also those of Africa, when they learn English,
they always add two _e_'s at the end of the words where we use one, and
place the accent upon the last of them; as _makee, takee_, and the like;
and we could not break them of it; nay, I could hardly make Friday leave
it off, though at last he did.

And now I name the poor fellow once more, I must take my last leave of
him; poor honest Friday! We buried him with all decency and solemnity
possible, by putting him into a coffin, and throwing him into the sea;
and I caused them to fire eleven guns for him: and so ended the life of
the most grateful, faithful, honest, and most affectionate servant that
ever man had.

We now went away with a fair wind for Brasil, and, in about twelve days
time, we made land in the latitude of five degrees south of the line,
being the north-easternmost land of all that part of America. We kept on
S. by E. in sight of the shore four days, when we made the Cape St.
Augustine, and in three days came to an anchor off the bay of All
Saints, the old place of my deliverance, from whence came both my good
and evil fate.

Never did a ship come to this part that had less business than I had;
and yet it was with great difficulty that we were admitted to hold the
least correspondence on shore. Not my partner himself, who was alive,
and made a great figure among them, not my two merchant trustees, nor
the fame of my wonderful preservation in the island, could obtain me
that favour; but my partner remembering that I had given five hundred
moidores to the prior of the monastery of the Augustines, and three
hundred and seventy-two to the poor, went to the monastery, and obliged
the prior that then was, to go to the governor, and beg leave for me
presently, with the captain, and one more, besides eight seamen, to come
on shore, and no more; and this upon condition absolutely capitulated
for, that we should not offer to land any goods out of the ship, or to
carry any person away without licence.

They were so strict with us, as to landing any goods, that it was with
extreme difficulty that I got on shore three bales of English goods,
such as fine broad-cloths, stuffs, and some linen, which I had brought
for a present to my partner.

He was a very generous, broad-hearted man, though (like me) he came from
little at first; and though he knew not that I had the least design of
giving him any thing, he sent me on board a present of fresh provisions,
wine, and sweetmeats, worth above thirty moidores, including some
tobacco, and three or four fine medals in gold. But I was even with him
in my present, which, as I have said, consisted of fine broad-cloth,
English stuffs, lace, and fine Hollands. Also, I delivered him about the
value of 100_l_. sterling, in the same goods, for other uses: and I
obliged him to set up the sloop which I had brought with me from
England, as I have said, for the use of my colony, in order to send the
refreshments I intended to my plantation.

Accordingly he got hands, and finished the sloop in a very few days, for
she was already framed; and I gave the master of her such instruction as
he could not miss the place; nor did he miss it, as I had an account
from my partner afterwards. I got him soon loaded with the small cargo I
had sent them; and one of our seamen, that had been on shore with me
there, offered to go with the sloop, and settle there, upon my letter
to the governor Spaniard, to allot him a sufficient quantity of land for
a plantation; and giving him some clothes, and tools for his planting
work, which he said he understood, having been an old planter in
Maryland, and a buccaneer into the bargain.

I encouraged the fellow by granting all he desired; and, as an addition,
I gave him the savage which we had taken prisoner of war, to be his
slave, and ordered the governor Spaniard to give him his share of
everything he wanted, with the rest.

When we came to fit this man out, my old partner told me, there was a
certain very honest fellow, a Brasil planter of his acquaintance, who
had fallen into he displeasure of the church: "I know not what the
matter is with him," says he, "but, on my conscience, I think he is a
heretic in his heart; and he has been obliged to conceal himself for
fear of the Inquisition;" that he would be very glad of such an
opportunity to make his escape, with his wife and two daughters; and if
I would let them go to the island, and allot them a plantation, he would
give them a small stock to begin with; for the officers of the
Inquisition had seized all his effects and estate, and he had nothing
left but a little household stuff, and two slaves; "And," adds he,
"though I hate his principles, yet I would not have him fall into their
hands, for he will assuredly be burnt alive if he does."

I granted this presently, and joined my Englishman with them; and we
concealed the man, and his wife and daughters, on board our ship, till
the sloop put out to go to sea; and then (having put all their goods on
board the sloop some time before) we put them on board the sloop, after
she was got out of the bay.

Our seaman was mightily pleased with this new partner; and their stock,
indeed, was much alike, rich in tools, and in preparations, for a farm;
but nothing to begin with, but as above. However, they carried over with
them (which was worth all the rest) some materials for planting
sugar-canes, with some plants of canes; which he (I mean the Portugal
man) understood very well.

Among the rest of the supplies sent my tenants in the island, I sent
them, by this sloop, three milch-cows and five calves, about twenty-two
hogs, among them, three sows big with pig, two mares, and a stone-horse.

For my Spaniards, according to my promise, I engaged three Portugal
women to go; and recommended it to them to marry them, and use them
kindly. I could have procured more women, but I remembered that the poor
persecuted man had two daughters, and there were but five of the
Spaniards that wanted; the rest had wives of their own, though in
another country.

All this cargo arrived safe, and, as you may easily suppose, very
welcome to my old inhabitants, who were now (with this addition) between
sixty and seventy people, besides little children; of which there were a
great many: I found letters at London from them all, by way of Lisbon,
when I came back to England, being sent back to the Brasils by this
sloop; of which I shall take some notice in its place.

I have now done with my island, and all manner of discourse about it;
and whoever reads the rest of my memorandums, would do well to turn his
thoughts entirely from it, and expect to read only of the follies of an
old man, not warned by his own harms, much less by those of other men,
to beware of the like; not cooled by almost forty years misery and
disappointments; not satisfied with prosperity beyond expectation; not
made cautious by affliction and distress beyond irritation.

I had no more business to go to the East Indies, than a man at full
liberty, and having committed no crime, has to go to the turnkey at
Newgate, and desire him to lock him up among the prisoners there, and
starve him. Had I taken a small vessel from England, and gone directly
to the island; had I loaded her, as I did the other vessel, with all the
necessaries for the plantation, and for my people; took a patent from
the government here, to have secured my property, in subjection only to
that of England, which, to be sure, I might have obtained; had I carried
over cannon and ammunition, servants, and people to plant, and, taking
possession of the place, fortified and strengthened it in the name of
England, and increased it with people, as I might easily have done; had
I then settled myself there, and sent the ship back, loaded with good
rice, as I might also have done in six months time, and ordered my
friends to have fitted her out again for our supply; had I done this,
and staid there myself, I had, at least, acted like a man of common
sense; but I was possessed with a wandering spirit, scorned all
advantages, pleased myself with being the patron of these people I had
placed there, and doing for them in a kind of haughty majestic way, like
an old patriarchal monarch; providing for them, as if I had been father
of the whole family, as well as of the plantation: but I never so much
as pretended to plant in the name of any government or nation, or to
acknowledge any prince, or to call my people subjects to any one nation
more than another; nay, I never so much as gave the place a name; but
left it as I found it, belonging to no man; and the people under no
discipline or government but my own; who, though I had an influence over
them as father and benefactor, had no authority or power to act or
command one way or other, farther than voluntary consent moved them to
comply: yet even this, had I staid there, would have done well enough;
but as I rambled from them, and came thither no more, the last letters I
had from any of them, were by my partner's means, who afterwards sent
another sloop to the place; and who sent me word, though I had not the
letter till five years after it was written, that they went on but
poorly, were malecontent with their long stay there; that Will Atkins
was dead; that five of the Spaniards were come away; and that though
they had not been much molested by the savages, yet they had had some
skirmishes with them; that they begged of him to write to me to think
of the promise I had made to fetch them away, that they might see their
own country again before they died.

But I was gone a wild-goose chase indeed, and they who will have any
more of me, must be content to follow me through a new variety of
follies, hardships, and wild adventures; wherein the justice of
Providence may be duly observed, and we may see how easily Heaven can
gorge us with our own desires, make the strongest of our wishes to be
our affliction and punish us most severely with those very things which
we think it would be our utmost happiness to be allowed in.

Let no wise man flatter himself with the strength of his own judgment,
as if he was able to choose any particular station of life for himself.
Man is a short-sighted creature, sees but a very little way before him;
and as his passions are none of his best friends, so his particular
affections are generally his worst counsellors.

I say this with respect to the impetuous desire I had from a youth to
wander into the world, and how evident it now was that this principle
was preserved in me for my punishment. How it came on, the manner, the
circumstance, and the conclusion of it, it is easy to give you
historically, and with its utmost variety of particulars. But the secret
ends of Divine Providence, in thus permitting us to be hurried down the
stream of our own desires, are only to be understood of those who can
listen to the voice of Providence, and draw religious consequences from
God's justice and their own mistakes.

Be it had I business or no business, away I went. It is no time now to
enlarge any farther upon the reason or absurdity of my own conduct; but
to come to the history--I was embarked for the voyage, and the voyage
I went.

I shall only add here, that my honest and truly pious clergyman left me
here; a ship being ready to go to Lisbon, he asked me leave to go
thither; being still as he observed, bound never to finish any voyage
he began. How happy had it been for me if I had gone with him!

But it was too late now; all things Heaven appoints are best. Had I gone
with him, I had never had so many things to be thankful for, and you had
never heard of the Second Part of the Travels and Adventures of Robinson
Crusoe; so I must leave here the fruitless exclaiming at myself, and go
on with my voyage.

From the Brasils we made directly away over the Atlantic sea to the Cape
de Bonne Esperance, or, as we call it, the Cape of Good Hope; and had a
tolerable good voyage, our course generally south-east; now and then a
storm, and some contrary winds. But my disasters at sea were at an end;
my future rubs and cross events were to befal me on shore; that it might
appear the land was as well prepared to be our scourge as the sea, when
Heaven, who directs the circumstances of things, pleases to appoint
it to be so.

Our ship was on a trading voyage, and had a supercargo on board, who was
to direct all her motions after she arrived at the Cape; only being
limited to a certain number of days for stay, by charter-party, at the
several ports she was to go to. This was none of my business, neither
did I meddle with it at all; my nephew the captain, and the supercargo,
adjusting all those things between them as they thought fit.

We made no stay at the Cape longer than was needful to take in fresh
water, but made the best of our way for the coast of Coromandel; we were
indeed informed that a French man of war of fifty guns and two large
merchant-ships were gone for the Indies; and as I knew we were at war
with France, I had some apprehensions of them; but they went their own
way, and we heard no more of them.

I shall not pester my account, or the reader, with descriptions of
places, journals of our voyages, variations of the compass, latitudes,
meridian distances, trade-winds, situation of ports, and the like; such
as almost all the histories of long navigation are full of, and which
make the reading tiresome enough, and are perfectly unprofitable to all
that read, except only to those who are to go to those places

It is enough to name the ports and places which we touched at, and what
occurred to us upon our passing from one to another. We touched first at
the island of Madagascar, where, though the people are fierce and
treacherous, and, in particular, very well armed with lances and bows,
which they use with inconceivable dexterity, yet we fared very well with
them awhile; they treated us very civilly; and for some trifles which we
gave them, such as knives, scissors, &c. they brought us eleven good fat
bullocks, middling in size, but very good in flesh, which we took in,
partly for fresh provisions for our present spending, and the rest to
salt for the ship's use.

We were obliged to stay here for some time after we had furnished
ourselves with provisions; and I that was always too curious to look
into every nook of the world wherever I came, was for going on shore as
often as I could. It was on the east side of the island that we went on
shore one evening, and the people, who by the way are very numerous,
came thronging about us, and stood gazing at us at a distance; as we had
traded freely with them, and had been kindly used, we thought ourselves
in no danger; but when we saw the people we cut three boughs out of a
tree, and stuck them up at a distance from us, which, it seems, is a
mark in the country not only of truce and friendship, but when it is
accepted, the other side set up three poles or boughs also, which is a
signal that they accept the truce too; but then this is a known
condition of the truce, that you are not to pass beyond their three
poles towards them, nor they come past your three poles or boughs
towards you; so that you are perfectly secure within the three poles,
and all the space between your poles and theirs is allowed like a market
for free converse, traffic, and commerce. When you go thither you must
not carry your weapons with you; and if they come into that space they
stick up their javelins and lances all at the first poles, and come on
unarmed; but if any violence is offered them, and the truce thereby
broken, away they run to the poles and lay hold of their weapons, and
then the truce is at an end.

It happened one evening when we went on shore, that a greater number of
their people came down than usual, but all was very friendly and civil.
They brought with them several kinds of provisions, for which we
satisfied them with such toys as we had; their women also brought us
milk and roots, and several things very acceptable to us, and all was
quiet; and we made us a little tent or hut, of some boughs of trees, and
lay on shore all that night.

I know not what was the occasion, but I was not so well satisfied to lie
on shore as the rest; and the boat lying at an anchor about a stone's
cast from the land, with two men in her to take care of her, I made one
of them come on shore, and getting some boughs of trees to cover us also
in the boat, I spread the sail on the bottom of the boat, and lay on
board, under the cover of the branches of the trees, all night.

About two o'clock in the morning we heard one of our men make a terrible
noise on the shore, calling out for God's sake to bring the boat in, and
come and help them, for they were all like to be murdered; at the same
time I heard the firing of five muskets, which was the number of the
guns they had, and that three times over; for, it seems, the natives
here were not so easily frighted with guns as the savages were in
America, where I had to do with them.

All this while I knew not what was the matter; but rousing immediately
from sleep with the noise, I caused the boat to be thrust in, and
resolved, with three fusils we had on board, to land and assist our men.

We got the boat soon to the shore; but our men were in too much haste;
for being come to the shore, they plunged into the water to get to the
boat with all the expedition they could, being pursued by between three
and four hundred men. Our men were but nine in all, and only five of
them had fusils with them; the rest, indeed, had pistols and swords, but
they were of small use to them.

We took up seven of our men, and with difficulty enough too, three of
them being very ill wounded; and that which was still worse was, that
while we stood in the boat to take our men in, we were in as much danger
as they were in on shore; for they poured their arrows in upon us so
thick, that we were fain to barricade the side of the boat up with the
benches and two or three loose boards, which to our great satisfaction
we had by mere accident, or providence rather, in the boat.

And yet had it been daylight, they are, it seems, such exact marksmen,
that if they could have seen but the least part of any of us, they would
have been sure of us. We had, by the light of the moon, a little sight
of them as they stood pelting us from the shore with darts and arrows,
and having got ready our fire-arms, we gave them a volley, and we could
hear by the cries of some of them, that we had wounded several; however,
they stood thus in battle array on the shore till break of day, which we
suppose was that they might see the better to take their aim at us.

In this condition we lay, and could not tell how to weigh our anchor, or
set up our sail, because we must needs stand up in the boat, and they
were as sure to hit us as we were to hit a bird in a tree with small
shot. We made signals of distress to the ship, which though she rode a
league off, yet my nephew, the captain, hearing our firing, and by
glasses perceiving the posture we lay in, and that we fired towards the
shore, pretty well understood us; and weighing anchor with all speed, he
stood as near the shore as he durst with the ship, and then sent another
boat with ten hands in her to assist us; but we called to them not to
come too near, telling them what condition we were in; however, they
stood in nearer to us; and one of the men taking the end of a tow-line
in his hand, and keeping our boat between him and the enemy, so that
they could not perfectly see him, swam on board us, and made the line
fast to the boat, upon which we slipt our little cable, and leaving our
anchor behind, they towed us out of the reach of the arrows, we all the
while lying close behind the barricade we had made.

As soon as we were got from between the ship and the shore, that she
could lay her side to the shore, we ran along just by them, and we
poured in a broadside among them, loaded with pieces of iron and lead,
small bullets, and such stuff, besides the great shot, which made a
terrible havoc among them.

When we were got on board and out of danger, we had time to examine into
the occasion of this fray; and indeed our supercargo, who had been often
in those parts, put me upon it; for he said he was sure the inhabitants
would not have touched us after we had made a truce, if we had not done
something to provoke them to it. At length it came out, viz. that an old
woman, who had come to sell us some milk, had brought it within our
poles, with a young woman with her, who also brought some roots or
herbs; and while the old woman (whether she was mother to the young
woman or no they could not tell) was selling us the milk, one of our men
offered some rudeness to the wench that was with her, at which the old
woman made a great noise. However, the seaman would not quit his prize,
but carried her out of the old woman's sight, among the trees, it being
almost dark. The old woman went away without her, and, as we suppose,
made an outcry among the people she came from; who, upon notice, raised
this great army upon us in three or four hours; and it was great odds
but we had been all destroyed.

One of our men was killed with a lance that was thrown at him, just at
the beginning of the attack, as he sallied out of the tent we had made;
the rest came off free, all but the fellow who was the occasion of all
the mischief, who paid dear enough for his black mistress, for we could
not hear what became of him a great while. We lay upon the shore two
days after, though the wind presented, and made signals for him; made
our boat sail up shore and down shore several leagues, but in vain; so
we were obliged to give him over; and if he alone had suffered for it,
the loss had been the less.

I could not satisfy myself, however, without venturing on shore once
more, to try if I could learn any thing of him or them. It was the third
night after the action that I had a great mind to learn, if I could by
any means, what mischief he had done, and how the game stood on the
Indian side. I was careful to do it in the dark, lest we should be
attacked again; but I ought indeed to have been sure that the men I went
with had been under my command before I engaged in a thing so hazardous
and mischievous, as I was brought into it without my knowledge
or desire.

We took twenty stout fellows with us as any in the ship, besides the
supercargo and myself; and we landed two hours before midnight, at the
same place where the Indians stood drawn up the evening before. I landed
here, because my design, as I have said, was chiefly to see if they had
quitted the field, and if they had left any marks behind them, or of the
mischief we had done them; and I thought if we could surprise one or two
of them, perhaps we might get our man again by way of exchange.

We landed without any noise, and divided our men into two companies,
whereof the boatswain commanded one, and I the other. We neither could
hear nor see any body stir when we landed; so we marched up, one body at
a distance from the other, to the field of battle. At first we could see
nothing, it being very dark; but by and by our boatswain, that led the
first party, stumbled and fell over a dead body. This made them halt
there awhile; for knowing by the circumstances that they were at the
place where the Indians had stood, they waited for my coming up. Here
we concluded to halt till the moon began to rise, which we knew would be
in less than an hour, and then we could easily discern the havoc we had
made among them. We told two-and-thirty bodies upon the ground, whereof
two were not quite dead. Some had an arm, and some a leg, shot off, and
one his head; those that were wounded we supposed they had carried away.

When we had made, as I thought, a full discovery of all we could come at
the knowledge of, I was for going on board again; but the boatswain and
his party often sent me word, that they were resolved to make a visit to
the Indian town, where these dogs, as they called them, dwelt, and
desired me to go along with them, and if they could find them, as they
still fancied they should, they did not doubt, they said, getting a good
booty, and it might be they might find Thomas Jeffrys there, that was
the man's name we had lost.

Had they sent to ask my leave to go, I knew well enough what answer to
have given them; for I would have commanded them instantly on board,
knowing it was not a hazard fit for us to run who had a ship and a
ship's loading in our charge, and a voyage to make, which depended very
much upon the lives of the men; but as they sent me word they were
resolved to go, and only asked me and my company to go along with them,
I positively refused it, and rose up (for I was sitting on the ground)
in order to go to the boat. One or two of the men began to importune me
to go, and when I still refused positively, began to grumble, and say
they were not under my command, and they would go. "Come, Jack," says
one of the men, "will you go with me? I will go for one." Jack said he
would; and another followed, and then another; and, in a word, they all
left me but one, whom, with much difficulty too, I persuaded to stay; so
the supercargo and I, with one man, went back to the boat, where, I
told them, we would stay for them, and take care to take in as many of
them as should be left; for I told them it was a mad thing they were
going about, and supposed most of them would run the fate of
Thomas Jeffrys.

They told me, like seamen, they would warrant it they would come off
again, and they would take care, &c. So away they went. I entreated them
to consider the ship and the voyage; that their lives were not their
own; and that they were entrusted with the voyage in some measure; that
if they miscarried, the ship might be lost for want of their help; and
that they could not answer it to God and man. I said a great deal more
to them on that head, but I might as well have talked to the main-mast
of the ship; they were mad upon their journey; only they gave me good
words, and begged I would not be angry; said they would be very
cautious, and they did not doubt but they would be back again in about
an hour at farthest; for the Indian town, they said, was not above half
a mile off; though they found it above two miles before they got to it.

Well, they all went away as above; and though the attempt was desperate,
and such as none but madmen would have gone about, yet, to give them
their due, they went about it warily as well as boldly. They were
gallantly armed, that is true; for they had every man a fusil or musket,
a bayonet, and every man a pistol; some of them had broad cutlasses,
some of them hangers, and the boatswain and two more had pole-axes;
besides all which they had among them thirteen hand-grenadoes. Bolder
fellows, and better provided, never went about any wicked work in
the world.

When they went out their chief design was plunder, and they were in
mighty hopes of finding gold there; but a circumstance, which none of
them were aware of, set them on fire with revenge, and made devils of
them all. When they came to the few Indian houses, which they thought
had been the town, which were not above half a mile off, they were under
a great disappointment; for there were not above twelve or thirteen
houses; and where the town was, or how big, they knew not. They
consulted therefore what to do, and were some time before they could
resolve; for if they fell upon these they must cut all their throats,
and it was ten to one but some of them might escape, it being in the
night, though the moon was up; and if one escaped he would run away, and
raise all the town, so they should have a whole army upon them. Again,
on the other hand, if they went away, and left those untouched (for the
people were all asleep), they could not tell which way to look for
the town.

However, the last was the best advice; so they resolved to leave those
houses, and look for the town as well as they could. They went on a
little way, and found a cow tied to a tree: this they presently
concluded would be a good guide to them; for they said the cow certainly
belonged to the town before them or the town behind them, and if they
untied her they should see which way she went: if she went back they had
nothing to say to her, but if she went forward they had nothing to do
but to follow her; so they cut the cord, which was made of twisted
flags, and the cow went on before them. In a word, the cow led them
directly to the town, which, as they reported, consisted of above two
hundred houses or huts; and in some of these they found several families
living together.

Here they found all silent; as profoundly secure as sleep and a country
that had never seen an enemy of that kind could make them. Upon this
they called another council to consider what they had to do, and in a
word they resolved to divide themselves into three bodies, and to set
three houses on fire in three parts of the town; and as the men came
out, to seize them and bind them; if any resisted, they need not be
asked what to do then, and so to search the rest of the houses for
plunder; but resolved to march silently first through the town, and see
what dimensions it was of, and consider if they might venture upon it
or no.

They did so, and desperately resolved that they would venture upon them;
but while they were animating one another to the work, three of them
that were a little before the rest called out aloud, and told them they
had found Thomas Jeffrys; they all ran up to the place; and so it was
indeed, for there they found the poor fellow, hanged up naked by one
arm, and his throat cut. There was an Indian house just by the tree,
where they found sixteen or seventeen of the principal Indians who had
been concerned in the fray with us before, and two or three of them
wounded with our shot; and our men found they were awake, and talking
one to another in that house, but knew not their number.

The sight of their poor mangled comrade so enraged them, as before, that
they swore to one another they would be revenged, and that not an Indian
who came into their hands should have quarter; and to work they went
immediately, and yet not so madly as by the rage and fury they were in
might be expected. Their first care was to get something that would soon
take fire; but after a little search they found that would be to no
purpose, for most of the houses were low, and thatched with flags or
rushes, of which the country is full: so they presently made some
wildfire, as we call it, by wetting a little powder in the palms of
their hands; and in a quarter of an hour they set the town on fire in
four or five places, and particularly that house where the Indians were
not gone to bed. As soon as the fire began to blaze, the poor frighted
creatures began to rush out to save their lives, but met with their fate
in the attempt, and especially at the door, where they drove them back,
the boatswain himself killing one or two with his pole-axe; the house
being large, and many in it, he did not care to go in, but called for an
hand-grenado, and threw it among them, which at first frighted them; but
when it burst made such havoc among them, that they cried out in a
hideous manner.

In short, most of the Indians who were in the open part of the house,
were killed or hurt with the grenado, except two or three more, who
pressed to the door, which the boatswain and two more kept with the
bayonets in the muzzles of their pieces, and dispatched all who came
that way. But there was another apartment in the house, where the
prince, or king, or whatsoever he was, and several others, were; and
they kept in till the house, which was by this time all of a light
flame, fell in upon them, and they were smothered or burnt together.

All this while they fired not a gun, because they would not waken the
people faster than they could master them; but the fire began to waken
them fast enough, and our fellows were glad to keep a little together in
bodies; for the fire grew so raging, all the houses being made of light
combustible stuff, that they could hardly bear the street between them,
and their business was to follow the fire for the surer execution. As
fast as the fire either forced the people out of those houses which were
burning, or frighted them out of others, our people were ready at their
doors to knock them on the head, still calling and hallooing to one
another to remember Thomas Jeffrys.

While this was doing I must confess I was very uneasy, and especially
when I saw the flames of the town, which, it being night, seemed to be
just by me.

My nephew the captain, who was roused by his men too, seeing such a
fire, was very uneasy, not knowing what the matter was, or what danger I
was in; especially hearing the guns too, for by this time they began to
use their fire-arms. A thousand thoughts oppressed his mind concerning
me and the supercargo, what should become of us; and at last, though he
could ill spare any more men, yet, not knowing what exigence we might be
in, he takes another boat, and with thirteen men and himself comes on
shore to me.

He was surprised to see me and the supercargo in the boat with no more
than two men, for one had been left to keep the boat; and though he was
glad that we were well, yet he was in the same impatience with us to
know what was doing, for the noise continued and the flame increased. I
confess it was next to an impossibility for any men in the world to
restrain their curiosity of knowing what had happened, or their concern
for the safety of the men. In a word, the captain told me he would go
and help his men, let what would come. I argued with him, as I did
before with the men, the safety of the ship, and the danger of the
voyage, the interest of the owners and merchants, &c. and told him I
would go, and the two men, and only see if we could, at a distance,
learn what was like to be the event, and come back and tell him.

It was all one to talk to my nephew, as it was to talk to the rest
before; he would go, he said, and he only wished he had left but ten men
in the ship, for he could not think of having his men lost for want of
help; he had rather, he said, lose the ship, the voyage, and his life,
and all: and so away went he.

Nor was I any more able to stay behind now than I was to persuade them
not to go before; so, in short, the captain ordered two men to row back
the pinnace, and fetch twelve men more from the ship, leaving the
long-boat at an anchor; and that when they came back six men should keep
the two boats, and six more come after us, so that he left only sixteen
men in the ship; for the whole ship's company consisted of sixty-five
men, whereof two were lost in the first quarrel which brought this
mischief on.

Being now on the march, you may be sure we felt little of the ground we
trod on, and being guided by the fire we kept no path, but went directly
to the place of the flame. If the noise of the guns were surprising to
us before, the cries of the poor people were now quite of another
nature, and filled us with horror. I must confess I never was at the
sacking of a city, or at the taking of a town by storm; I have heard of
Oliver Cromwell taking Drogheda in Ireland, and killing man, woman, and
child; and I had read of Count Tilly sacking the city of Magdebourg, and
cutting the throats of 22,000 of both sexes; but I never had an idea of
the thing itself before, nor is it possible to describe it, or the
horror which was upon our minds at hearing it.

However, we went on, and at length came to the town, though there was no
entering the streets of it for the fire. The first object we met with
was the ruins of a hut or house, or rather the ashes of it, for the
house was consumed; and just before it, plain now to be seen by the
light of the fire, lay four men and three women killed; and, as we
thought, one or two more lay in the heap among the fire. In short, these
were such instances of a rage altogether barbarous, and of a fury
something beyond what was human, that we thought it impossible our men
could be guilty of it; or if they were the authors of it, we thought
that every one of them ought to be put to the worst of deaths: but this
was not all; we saw the fire increased forward, and the cry went on just
as the fire went on, so that we were in the utmost confusion. We
advanced a little way farther, and beheld to our astonishment three
women naked, crying in a most dreadful manner, and flying as if they had
indeed had wings, and after them sixteen or seventeen men, natives, in
the same terror and consternation, with three of our English butchers
(for I can call them no better) in the rear, who, when they could not
overtake them, fired in among them, and one that was killed by their
shot fell down in our sight: when the rest saw us, believing us to be
their enemies; and that we would murder them as well as those that
pursued them, they set up a most dreadful shriek, especially the women,
and two of them fell down as if already dead with the fright.

My very soul shrunk within me, and my blood ran chill in my veins, when
I saw this; and I believe had the three English sailors that pursued
them come on, I had made our men kill them all. However, we took some
ways to let the poor flying creatures know that we would not hurt them,
and immediately they came up to us, and kneeling down, with their hands
lifted up, made piteous lamentations to us to save them, which we let
them know we would do; where upon they kept all together in a huddle
close behind us for protection. I left my men drawn up together, and
charged them to hurt nobody, but if possible to get at some of our
people, and see what devil it was possessed them, and what they intended
to do; and in a word to command them off, assuring them that if they
staid till daylight they would have a hundred thousand men about their
ears: I say, I left them and went among those flying people, taking only
two of our men with me; and there was indeed a piteous spectacle among
them: some of them had their feet terribly burnt with trampling and
running through the fire, others their hands burnt; one of the women had
fallen down in the fire, and was almost burnt to death before she could
get out again; two or three of the men had cuts in their backs and
thighs, from our men pursuing, and another was shot through the body,
and died while I was there.

I would fain have learnt what the occasion of all this was, but I could
not understand one word they said, though by signs I perceived that some
of them knew not what was the occasion themselves. I was so terrified in
my thoughts at this outrageous attempt, that I could not stay there, but
went back to my own men: I told them my resolution, and commanded them
to follow me, when in the very moment came four of our men, with the
boatswain at their head, running over the heaps of bodies they had
killed, all covered with blood and dust, as if they wanted more people
to massacre, when our men hallooed to them as loud as they could halloo,
and with much ado one of them made them hear, so that they knew who we
were, and came up to us.

As soon as the boatswain saw us he set up a halloo, like a shout of
triumph, for having, as he thought, more help come; and without bearing
to hear me, "Captain," says he, "noble captain, I am glad you are come;
we have not half done yet: villains! hell-hound dogs! I will kill as
many of them as poor Tom has hairs upon his head. We have sworn to spare
none of them; we will root out the very name of them from the earth."
And thus he ran on, out of breath too with action, and would not give us
leave to speak a word.

At last, raising my voice, that I might silence him a little, "Barbarous
dog!" said I, "what are you doing? I won't have one creature touched
more upon pain of death. I charge you upon your life to stop your hands,
and stand still here, or you are a dead man this minute."

"Why, Sir," says he, "do you know what you do, or what they have done?
If you want a reason for what we have done, come hither;" and with that
he shewed me the poor fellow hanging upon a tree, with his throat cut.

I confess I was urged then myself, and at another time should have been
forward enough; but I thought they had carried their rage too far, and
thought of Jacob's words to his sons Simeon and Levi, "Cursed be their
anger, for it was fierce; and their wrath, for it was cruel." But I had
now a new task upon my hands; for when the men I carried with me saw the
sight as I had done, I had as much to do to restrain them, as I should
have had with the others; nay, my nephew himself fell in with them, and
told me in their hearing, that he was only concerned for fear of the men
being overpowered; for, as to the people, he thought not one of them
ought to live; for they had all glutted themselves with the murder of
the poor man, and that they ought to be used like murderers. Upon these
words away ran eight of my men with the boatswain and his crew to
complete their bloody work; and I, seeing it quite out of my power to
restrain them, came away pensive and sad, for I could not bear the
sight, much less the horrible noise and cries of the poor wretches that
fell into their hands.

I got nobody to come back with me but the supercargo and two men, and
with these I walked back to the boats. It was a very great piece of
folly in me, I confess, to venture back as it were alone; for as it
began now to be almost day, and the alarm had run over the country,
there stood about forty men armed with lances and bows at the little
place where the twelve or thirteen houses stood mentioned before, but by
accident I missed the place, and came directly to the sea-side; and by
that time I got to the sea-side it was broad day: immediately I took the
pinnace and went aboard, and sent her back to assist the men in what
might happen.

I observed that about the time I came to the boat-side the fire was
pretty well out, and the noise abated; but in about half an hour after I
got on board I heard a volley of our men's fire-arms, and saw a great
smoke; this, as I understood afterwards, was our men falling upon the
forty men, who, as I said, stood at the few houses on the way; of whom
they killed sixteen or seventeen, and set all those houses on fire, but
did not meddle with the women or children.

By the time the men got to the shore again with the pinnace our men
began to appear; they came dropping in some and some, not in two bodies,
and in form, as they went out, but all in heaps, straggling here and
there in such a manner that a small force of resolute men might have cut
them all off.

But the dread of them was upon the whole country. The people were amazed
and surprised, and so frighted that I believe a hundred of them would
have fled at the sight of but five of our men. Nor in all this terrible
action was there a man who made any considerable defence; they were so
surprised between the terror of the fire, and the sudden attack of our
men in the dark, that they knew not which way to turn themselves; for if
they fled one way they were met by one party, if back again by another;
so that they were every where knocked down. Nor did any of our men
receive the least hurt, except one who strained his foot, and another
had one of his hands very much burnt.

I was very angry with my nephew the captain, and indeed with all the
men, in my mind, but with him in particular, as well for his acting so
out of his duty, as commander of the ship, and having the charge of the
voyage upon him, as in his prompting rather than cooling the rage of his
men in so bloody and cruel an enterprise: my nephew answered me very
respectfully, but told me that when he saw the body of the poor seaman
whom they had murdered in such a cruel and barbarous manner, he was not
master of himself, neither could he govern his passion; he owned he
should not have done so, as he was commander of the ship, but as he was
a man, and nature moved him, he could not bear it. As for the rest of
the men, they were not subject to me at all, and they knew it well
enough, so they took no notice of my dislike.

The next day we set sail, so we never heard any more of it. Our men
differed in the account of the number they killed; some said one thing,
some another; but according to the best of their accounts, put all
together, they killed or destroyed about a hundred and fifty people,
men, women, and children, and left not a house standing in the town.

As for the poor fellow, Thomas Jeffrys, as he was quite dead, for his
throat was so cut that his head was half off, it would do him no service
to bring him away; so they left him where they found him, only took him
down from the tree where he was hanged by one hand.

However just our men thought this action to be, I was against them in
it, and I always after that time told them God would blast the voyage;
for I looked upon the blood they shed that night to be murder in them:
for though it is true that they killed Thomas Jeffrys, yet it was as
true that Jeffrys was the aggressor, had broken the truce, and had
violated or debauched a young woman of theirs, who came to our camp
innocently, and on the faith of their capitulation.

The boatswain defended this quarrel when we were afterwards on board. He
said, it was true that we seemed to break the truce, but really had not,
and that the war was begun the night before by the natives themselves,
who had shot at us, and killed one of our men without any just
provocation; so that as we were in a capacity to fight them, we might
also be in a capacity to do ourselves justice upon them in an
extraordinary manner; that though the poor man had taken liberty with a
wench, he ought not to have been murdered, and that in such a villanous
manner; and that they did nothing but what was just, and that the laws
of God allowed to be done to murderers.

One would think this should have been enough to have warned us against
going on shore among heathens and barbarians; but it is impossible to
make mankind wise but at their own experience; and their experience
seems to be always of most use to them when it is dearest bought.

We were now bound to the Gulf of Persia, and from thence to the coast of
Coromandel, only to touch at Surat; but the chief of the supercargo's
design lay at the Bay of Bengal, where if he missed of the business
outward-bound he was to go up to China, and return to the coast as he
came home.

The first disaster that befel us was in the Gulf of Persia, where five
of our men venturing on shore on the Arabian side of the Gulf were
surrounded by the Arabs, and either all killed or carried away into
slavery; the rest of the boat's crew were not able to rescue them, and
had but just time to get off their boat. I began to upbraid them with
the just retribution of Heaven in this case; but the boatswain very
warmly told me, he thought I went farther in my censures than I could
show any warrant for in Scripture, and referred to the thirteenth of St.
Luke, ver. 4, where our Saviour intimates that those men on whom the
tower of Siloam fell, were not sinners above all the Galileans; but that
which indeed put me to silence in this case was, that none of these five
men who were now lost were of the number of those who went on shore to
the massacre of Madagascar (so I always called it, though our men could
not bear the word _massacre_ with any patience:) and indeed this last
circumstance, as I have said, put me to silence for the present.

But my frequent preaching to them on this subject had worse consequences
than I expected; and the boatswain, who had been the head of the
attempt, came up boldly to me one time, and told me he found that I
continually brought that affair upon the stage, that I made unjust
reflections upon it, and had used the men very ill on that account, and
himself in particular; that as I was but a passenger, and had no command
in the ship, or concern in the voyage, they were not obliged to bear it;
that they did not know but I might have some ill design in my head, and
perhaps call them to an account for it when they came to England; and
that therefore, unless I would resolve to have done with it, and also
not to concern myself farther with him, or any of his affairs, he would
leave the ship; for he did not think it was safe to sail with me
among them.

I heard him patiently enough till he had done, and then told him that I
did confess I had all along opposed the massacre of Madagascar, for such
I would always call it; and that I had on all occasions spoken my mind
freely about it, though not more upon him than any of the rest; that as
to my having no command in the ship, that was true, nor did I exercise
any authority, only took the liberty of speaking my mind in things which
publicly concerned us all: as to what concern I had in the voyage, that
was none of his business; I was a considerable owner of the ship, and in
that claim I conceived I had a right to speak, even farther than I had
yet done, and would not be accountable to him or any one else; and began
to be a little warm with him: he made but little reply to me at that
time, and I thought that affair had been over. We were at this time in
the road to Bengal; and being willing to see the place, I went on shore
with the supercargo, in the ship's boat, to divert myself; and towards
evening was preparing to go on board, when one of the men came to me,
and told me he would not have me trouble myself to come down to the
boat, for they had orders not to carry me on board. Any one may guess
what a surprise I was in at so insolent a message; and I asked the man
who bade him deliver that errand to me? He told me, the coxswain. I said
no more to the fellow, but bid him let them know he had delivered his
message, and that I had given him no answer to it.

I immediately went and round out the supercargo, and told him the story,
adding, what I presently foresaw, viz. that there would certainly be a
mutiny in the ship; and entreated him to go immediately on board the
ship in an Indian boat, and acquaint the captain of it: but I might have
spared this intelligence, for before I had spoken to him on shore the
matter was effected on board: the boatswain, the gunner, the carpenter,
and, in a word, all the inferior officers, as soon as I was gone off in
the boat, came up to the quarter-deck, and desired to speak with the
captain; and there the boatswain making a long harangue, (for the fellow
talked very well) and repeating all he had said to me, told the captain
in a few words, that as I was now gone peaceably on shore, they were
loath to use any violence with me; which if I had not gone on shore,
they would otherwise have done, to oblige me to have gone. They
therefore thought fit to tell him, that as they shipped themselves to
serve in the ship under his command, they would perform it faithfully;
but if I would not quit the ship, or the captain oblige me to quit it,
they would all leave the ship, and sail no farther with him; and at that
word All, he turned his face about towards the main-mast, which was, it
seems, the signal agreed on between them, at which all the seamen being
got together, they cried out, "One and All, One and All!"

My nephew, the captain, was a man of spirit, and of great presence of
mind; and though he was surprised, you may be sure, at the thing, yet he
told them calmly he would consider of the matter, but that he could do
nothing in it till he had spoken to me about it: he used some arguments
with them, to shew them the unreasonableness and injustice of the thing,
but it was all in vain; they swore, and shook hands round, before his
face, that they would go all on shore unless he would engage to them not
to suffer me to come on board the ship.

This was a hard article upon him, who knew his obligation to me, and did
not know how I might take it; so he began to talk cavalierly to them;
told them that I was a very considerable owner of the ship, and that in
justice he could not put me out of my own house; that this was next door
to serving me as the famous pirate Kid had done, who made the mutiny in
the ship, set the captain on shore in an uninhabited island, and ran
away with the ship; that let them go into what ship they would, if ever
they came to England again it would cost them dear; that the ship was
mine, and that he would not put me out of it; and that he would rather
lose the ship, and the voyage too, than disoblige me so much; so they
might do as they pleased. However, he would go on shore, and talk with
me there, and invited the boatswain to go with him, and perhaps they
might accommodate the matter with me.

But they all rejected the proposal; and said, they would have nothing to
do with me any more, neither on board nor on shore; and if I came on
board, they would go on shore. "Well," said the captain, "if you are all
of this mind, let me go on shore, and talk with him:" so away he came to
me with this account, a little after the message had been brought to me
from the coxswain.

I was very glad to see my nephew I must confess, for I was not without
apprehensions that they would confine him by violence, set sail, and run
away with the ship; and then I had been stripped naked, in a remote
country, and nothing to help myself: in short, I had been in a worse
case than when I was all alone in the island.

But they had not come to that length, it seems, to my great
satisfaction; and when my nephew told me what they had said to him, and
how they had sworn, and shook hands, that they would one and all leave
the ship, if I was suffered to come on board, I told him he should not
be concerned at it at all, for I would stay onshore; I only desired he
would take care and send me all my necessary things on shore, and leave
me a sufficient sum of money, and I would find my way to England as well
as I could.

This was a heavy piece of news to my nephew; but there was no way to
help it, but to comply with it. So, in short, he went on board the ship
again, and satisfied the men that his uncle had yielded to their
importunity, and had sent for his goods from on board the ship. So the
matter was over in a very few hours; the men returned to their duty, and
I begun to consider what course I should steer.

I was now alone in the remotest part of the world, as I think I may call
it, for I was near three thousand leagues, by sea, farther off from
England than I was at my island; only, it is true, I might travel here
by land, over the Great Mogul's country to Surat, might go from thence
to Bassora by sea, up the Gulf of Persia, and from thence might take the
way of the caravans, over the deserts of Arabia, to Aleppo and
Scanderoon, and from thence by sea again to Italy, and so overland into
France; and this, put together, might be, at least, a full diameter of
the globe; but, if it were to be measured, I suppose it would appear to
be a great deal more.

I had another way before me, which was to wait for some English ships,
which were coming to Bengal, from Achin, on the island of Sumatra, and
get passage on board them for England: but as I came hither without any
concern with the English East India Company, so it would be difficult to
go from hence without their licence, unless with great favour of the
captains of the ships, or of the Company's factors; and to both I was an
utter stranger.

Here I had the particular pleasure, speaking by contrarieties, to see
the ship set sail without me; a treatment, I think, a man in my
circumstances scarce ever met with, except from pirates running away
with a ship, and setting those that would not agree with their villany
on shore: indeed this was the next door to it both ways. However, my
nephew left me two servants, or rather, one companion and one servant:
the first was clerk to the purser, whom he engaged to go with me; and
the other was his own servant. I took me also a good lodging in the
house of an English woman, where several merchants lodged, some French,
two Italians, or rather Jews, and one Englishman. Here I was handsomely
enough entertained; and that I might not be said to run rashly upon any
thing, I stayed here above nine months, considering what course to take,
and how to manage myself. I had some English goods with me of value, and
a considerable sum of money; my nephew furnishing me with a thousand
pieces of eight, and a letter of credit for more, if I had occasion,
that I might not be straitened, whatever might happen.

I quickly disposed of my goods, and to advantage too; and, as I
originally intended, I bought here some very good diamonds, which, of
all other things, was the most proper for me, in my circumstances,
because I might always carry my whole estate about me.

After a long stay here, and many proposals made for my return to
England, but none falling to my mind, the English merchant, who lodged
with me, and with whom I had contracted an intimate acquaintance, came
to me one morning: "Countryman," says he, "I have a project to
communicate to you, which, as it suits with my thoughts, may, for aught
I know, suit with yours also, when you shall have thoroughly
considered it.

"Here we are posted," says he, "you by accident, and I by my own choice,
in a part of the world very remote from our own country; but it is in a
country where, by us who understand trade and business, a great deal of
money is to be got: if you will put a thousand pounds to my thousand
pounds, we will hire a ship here, the first we can get to our minds; you
shall be captain, I'll be merchant, and we will go a trading voyage to
China; for what should we stand still for? The whole world is in motion,
rolling round and round; all the creatures of God, heavenly bodies and
earthly, are busy and vibrant: why should we be idle? There are no
drones," says he, "living in the world but men: why should we be of
that number?"

I liked this proposal very well; and the more because it seemed to be
expressed with so much good will, and in so friendly a manner. I will
not say, but that I might, by my loose and unhinged circumstances, be
the fitter to embrace a proposal for trade, and indeed for any thing
else; or otherwise trade was none of my element; however, I might,
perhaps, say with some truth, that if trade was not my element, rambling
was; and no proposal for seeing any part of the world, which I had never
seen before, could possibly come amiss to me.

It was, however, some time before we could get a ship to our mind; and
when we got a vessel, it was not easy to get English sailors; that is to
say, so many as were necessary to govern the voyage, and manage the
sailors which we should pick up there. After some time we got a mate, a
boatswain, and a gunner, English; a Dutch carpenter, and three
Portuguese foremast-men: with these we found we could do well enough,
having Indian seamen, such as they are, to make up.

There are so many travellers who have written the history of their
voyages and travels this way, that it would be but very little diversion
to any body, to give a long account of the places we went to, and the
people who inhabit there: those things I leave to others, and refer the
reader to those journals and travels of Englishmen, many of which, I
find, are published, and more promised every day. It is enough for me to
tell you that we made the voyage to Achin, in the island of Sumatra,
first; and from thence to Siam, where we exchanged some of our wares for
opium, and for some arrack; the first a commodity which bears a great
price among the Chinese, and which, at that time, was very much wanted
there: in a word, we went up to Susham; made a very great voyage; were
eight months out; and returned to Bengal: and I was very well satisfied
with my adventure.

I observe, that our people in England often admire how the officers,
which the Company send into India, and the merchants which generally
stay there, get such very good estates as they do, and sometimes come
home worth sixty, seventy, and a hundred thousand pounds at a time. But
it is no wonder, or, at least, we shall see so much farther into it,
when we consider the innumerable ports and places where they have a free
commerce, that it will then be no wonder; and much less will it be so,
when we consider, that at all those places and ports where the English
ships come, there is so much, and such constant demand for the growth of
all other countries, that there is a certain vent for the return, as
well as a market abroad for the goods carried out.

In short, we made a very good voyage, and I got so much money by the
first adventure, and such an insight into the method of getting more,
that, had I been twenty years younger, I should have been tempted to
have stayed here, and sought no farther for making my fortune: but what
was all this to a man on the wrong side of threescore, that was rich
enough, and came abroad more in obedience to a restless desire of seeing
the world, than a covetous desire of getting in it? And indeed I think
it is with great justice that I now call it a restless desire, for it
was so: when I was at home, I was restless to go abroad; and now I was
abroad, I was restless to be at home. I say, what was this gain to me? I
was rich enough already; nor had I any uneasy desires about getting more
money; and therefore, the profits of the voyage to me were things of no
great force to me, for the prompting me forward to farther undertakings:
hence I thought, that by this voyage I had made no progress at all;
because I was come back, as I might call it, to the place from whence I
came, as to a home; whereas my eye, which, like that which Solomon
speaks of, was never satisfied with seeing, was still more desirous of
wandering and seeing. I was come into a part of the world which I never
was in before; and that part in particular which I had heard much of;
and was resolved to see as much of it as I could; and then I thought I
might say I had seen all the world that was worth seeing.

But my fellow-traveller and I had different notions: I do not name this
to insist upon my own, for I acknowledge his was most just, and the most
suited to the end of a merchant's life; who, when he is abroad upon
adventures, it is his wisdom to stick to that, as the best thing for
him, which he is like to get the most money by. My new friend kept
himself to the nature of the thing, and would have been content to have
gone, like a carrier's horse, always to the same inn, backward and
forward, provided he could, as he called it, find his account in it: on
the other hand, mine, as old as I was, was the notion of a mad rambling
boy, that never cares to see a thing twice over.

But this was not all: I had a kind of impatience upon me to be nearer
home, and yet the most unsettled resolution imaginable, which way to go.
In the interval of these consultations, my friend, who was always upon
the search for business, proposed another voyage to me, viz. among the
Spice Islands; and to bring home a load of cloves from the Manillas, or
thereabouts; places where, indeed, the Dutch do trade, but the islands
belong partly to the Spaniards; though we went not so far, but to some
other, where they have not the whole power as they have at Batavia,
Ceylon, &c. We were not long in preparing for this voyage; the chief
difficulty was in bringing me to come into it; however, at last, nothing
else offering, and finding that really stirring about and trading, the
profit being so great, and, as I may say, certain, had more pleasure in
it, and more satisfaction to the mind, than sitting still; which, to me
especially, was the unhappiest part of life, I resolved on this voyage
too: which we made very successfully, touching at Borneo, and several
islands, whose names I do not remember, and came home in about five
months. We sold our spice, which was chiefly cloves, and some nutmegs,
to the Persian merchants, who carried them away for the Gulf; and,
making near five of one, we really got a great deal of money.

My friend, when we made up this account, smiled at me: "Well now," said
he, with a sort of an agreeable insult upon my indolent temper, "is not
this better than walking about here, like a man of nothing to do, and
spending our time in staring at the nonsense and ignorace of the
Pagans?"--"Why truly," said I, "my friend, I think it is; and I begin to
be a convert to the principles of merchandising. But I must tell you,"
said I, "by the way, you do not know what I am doing; for if once I
conquer my backwardness, and embark heartily, as old as I am, I shall
harass you up and down the world till I tire you; for I shall pursue it
so eagerly, I shall never let you lie still."

But to be short with my speculations: a little while after this there
came in a Dutch ship from Batavia; she was a coaster, not an European
trader, and of about two hundred tons burden: the men, as they
pretended, having been so sickly, that the captain had not men enough to
go to sea with, he lay by at Bengal; and, as if having got money enough,
or being willing, for other reasons, to go for Europe, he gave public
notice, that he would sell his ship; this came to my ears before my new
partner heard of it; and I had a great mind to buy it. So I went home to
him, and told him of it: he considered awhile, for he was no rash man
neither; but musing some time, he replied, "She is a little too big;
but, however, we will have her." Accordingly we bought the ship; and,
agreeing with the master, we paid for her, and took possession; when we
had done so, we resolved to entertain the men, if we could, to join them
with those we had, for the pursuing our business; but on a sudden, they
not having received their wages, but their share of the money, as we
afterwards learnt, not one of them was to be found. We inquired much
about them, and at length were told, that they were all gone together,
by land, to Agra, the great city of the Mogul's residence; and from
thence were to travel to Surat, and so by sea to the Gulf of Persia.

Nothing had so heartily troubled me a good while, as that I missed the
opportunity of going with them; for such a ramble, I thought, and in
such company as would both have guarded me and diverted me, would have
suited mightily with my great design; and I should both have seen the
world, and gone homewards too; but I was much better satisfied a few
days after, when I came to know what sort of fellows they were; for, in
short, their history was, that this man they called captain was the
gunner only, not the commander; that they had been a trading voyage, in
which they were attacked on shore by some of the Malaccans, who had
killed the captain and three of his men; and that after the captain was
killed, these men, eleven in number, had resolved to run away with the
ship, which they did; and had brought her in at the Bay of Bengal,
leaving the mate and five men more on shore; of whom we shall
hear farther.

Well; let them come by the ship how they would, we came honestly by her,
as we thought; though we did not, I confess, examine into things so
exactly as we ought; for we never inquired any thing of the seamen, who,
if we had examined, would certainly have faltered in their accounts,
contradicted one another, and perhaps have contradicted themselves; or,
one how or other, we should have seen reason to have suspected them: but
the man shewed us a bill of sale for the ship, to one Emanuel
Clostershoven, or some such name, (for I suppose it was all a forgery)
and called himself by that name; and we could not contradict him; and
being withal a little too unwary, or at least having no suspicion of the
thing, we went through with our bargain.

However, we picked up some English seamen here after this, and some
Dutch; and we now resolved for a second voyage to the south-east, for
cloves, &c. that is to say, among the Philippine and Malacca isles; and,
in short, not to fill this part of my story with trifles, when what is
yet to come is so remarkable, I spent, from first to last, six years in
this country, trading from port to port, backward and forward, and with
very good success; and was now the last year with my partner, going in
the ship above-mentioned, on a voyage to China; but designing first to
go to Siam, to buy rice.

In this voyage, being by contrary winds obliged to beat up and down a
great while in the Straits of Malacca, and among the islands, we were no
sooner got clear of those difficult seas, but we found our ship had
sprung a leak, and we were not able, by all our industry, to find out
where it was. This forced us to make for some port; and my partner, who
knew the country better than I did, directed the captain to put into the
river of Cambodia; for I had made the English mate, one Mr. Thompson,
captain, not being willing to take the charge of the ship upon myself.
This river lies on the north side of the great bay or gulf which goes
up to Siam.

While we were here, and going often on shore for refreshment, there
comes to me one day an Englishman, and he was, it seems, a gunner's mate
on board an English East India ship, which rode in the same river, up at
or near the city of Cambodia: what brought him hither we knew not; but
he comes up to me, and, speaking English, "Sir," says he, "you are a
stranger to me, and I to you; but I have something to tell you, that
very nearly concerns you."

I looked stedfastly at him a good while, and he thought at first I had
known him, but I did not. "If it very nearly concerns me," said I, "and
not yourself, what moves you to tell it me?"--"I am moved," says he, "by
the imminent danger you are in; and, for aught I see, you have no
knowledge of it."--"I know no danger I am in," said I, "but that my ship
is leaky, and I cannot find it out; but I propose to lay her aground
to-morrow, to see if I can find it."--"But, Sir," says he, "leaky or not
leaky, find it or not find it, you will be wiser than to lay your ship
on shore to-morrow, when you hear what I have to say to you. Do you
know, Sir," said he, "the town of Cambodia lies about fifteen leagues up
this river? And there are two large English ships about five leagues on
this side, and three Dutch."--"Well," said I, "and what is that to
me?"--"Why, Sir," says he, "is it for a man that is upon such adventures
as you are, to come into a port, and not examine first what ships there
are there, and whether he is able to deal with them? I suppose you do
not think you are a match for them?" I was amused very much at his
discourse, but not amazed at it; for I could not conceive what he meant;
and I turned short upon him, and said, "Sir, I wish you would explain
yourself; I cannot imagine what reason I have to be afraid of any of the
Company's ships, or Dutch ships; I am no interloper; what can they have
to say to me?"

He looked like a man half angry, half pleased; and pausing awhile, but
smiling, "Well, Sir," says he, "if you think yourself secure, you must
take your chance; I am sorry your fate should blind you against good
advice; but assure yourself if you do not put to sea immediately, you
will the very next tide be attacked by five long-boats full of men; and,
perhaps, if you are taken, you will be hanged for a pirate, and the
particulars be examined into afterwards. I thought, Sir," added he, "I
should have met with a better reception than this, for doing you a piece
of service of such importance."--"I can never be ungrateful," said I,
"for any service, or to any man that offers me any kindness; but it is
past my comprehension," said I, "what they should have such a design
upon me for; however, since you say there is no time to be lost, and
that there is some villanous design in hand against me, I will go on
board this minute, and put to sea immediately, if my men can stop the
leak, or if we can swim without stopping it: but, Sir," said I, "shall I
go away ignorant of the reason of all this? Can you give me no farther
light into it?"

"I can tell you but part of the story, Sir," says he; "but I have a
Dutch seaman here with me, and, I believe, I could persuade him to tell
you the rest; but there is scarce time for it: but the short of the
story is this, the first part of which, I suppose, you know well enough,
viz. that you were with this ship at Sumatra; that there your captain
was murdered by the Malaccans, with three of his men; and that you, or
some of those that were on board with you, ran away with the ship, and
are since turned pirates. This is the sum of the story, and you will all
be seized as pirates, I can assure you, and executed with very little
ceremony; for you know merchant-ships shew but little law to pirates, if
they get them in their power."

"Now you speak plain English," said I, "and I thank you; and though I
know nothing that we have done, like what you talk of, but I am sure we
came honestly and fairly by the ship; yet seeing such work is a-doing,
as you say, and that you seem to mean honestly, I will be upon my
guard."--"Nay, Sir," says he, "do not talk of being upon your guard; the
best defence is to be out of the danger: if you have any regard to your
life, and the lives of all your men, put out to sea without fail at
high-water; and as you have a whole tide before you, you will be gone
too far out before they can come down; for they will come away at high
water; and as they have twenty miles to come, you'll get near two hours
of them by the difference of the tide, not reckoning the length of the
way: besides, as they are only boats, and not ships, they will not
venture to follow you far out to sea, especially if it blows."

"Well," said I, "you have been very kind in this: what shall I do for
you to make you amends?"--"Sir," says he, "you may not be so willing to
make me amends, because you may not be convinced of the truth of it: I
will make an offer to you; I have nineteen months pay due to me on board
the ship ----, which I came out of England in; and the Dutchman, that is
with me, has seven months pay due to him; if you will make good our pay
to us, we will go along with you: if you find nothing more in it, we
will desire no more; but if we do convince you, that we have saved your
life, and the ship, and the lives of all the men in her, we will leave
the rest to you."

I consented to this readily; and went immediately on board, and the two
men with me. As soon as I came to the ship's side, my partner, who was
on board, came on the quarter-deck, and called to me with a great deal
of joy, "O ho! O ho! we have stopped the leak!"--"Say you so?" said I;
"thank God; but weigh the anchor then immediately."--"Weigh!" says he;
"what do you mean by that? What is the matter?" says he. "Ask no
questions," said I, "but all hands to work, and weigh without losing a
minute." He was surprised: but, however, he called the captain, and he
immediately ordered the anchor to be got up; and though the tide was not
quite done, yet a little land breeze blowing, we stood out to sea; then
I called him into the cabin, and told him the story at large; and we
called in the men, and they told us the rest of it: but as it took us up
a great deal of time, so before we had done, a seaman comes to the cabin
door, and calls out to us, that the captain made him tell us, we were
chased. "Chased!" said I; "by whom, and by what?"--"By five sloops, or
boats," said the fellow, "full of men."--"Very well," said I; "then it
is apparent there is something in it." In the next place, I ordered all
our men to be called up; and told them, that there was a design to seize
the ship, and to take us for pirates; and asked them, if they would
stand by us, and by one another? The men answered, cheerfully, one and
all, that they would live and die with us. Then I asked the captain,
what way he thought best for us to manage a fight with them; for resist
them I resolved we would, and that to the last drop. He said, readily,
that the way was to keep them off with our great shot, as long as we
could, and then to fire at them with our small arms, to keep them from
boarding us; but when neither of these would do any longer, we should
retire to our close quarters; perhaps they had not materials to break
open our bulk-heads, or get in upon us.

The gunner had, in the mean time, orders to bring two guns to bear fore
and aft, out of the steerage, to clear the deck, and load them with
musket-bullets and small pieces of old iron, and what next came to hand;
and thus we made ready for fight; but all this while kept out to sea,
with wind enough, and could see the boats at a distance, being five
large long-boats following us, with all the sail they could make.

Two of these boats, which, by our glasses, we could see were English,
had outsailed the rest, were near two leagues a head of them, and gained
upon us considerably; so that we found they would come up with us: upon
which we fired a gun without a shot, to intimate that they should bring
to; and we put out a flag of truce, as a signal for parley; but they
kept crowding after us, till they came within shot: upon this we took in
our white flag, they having made no answer to it; hung out the red flag,
and fired at them with shot; notwithstanding this, they came on till
they were near enough to call to them with a speaking, trumpet, which we
had on board; so we called to them, and bade them keep off at
their peril.

It was all one, they crowded after us, and endeavoured to come under
our stern, so to board us on our quarter: upon which, seeing they were
resolute for mischief, and depended upon the strength that followed
them, I ordered to bring the ship to, so that they lay upon our
broadside, when immediately we fired five guns at them; one of them had
been levelled so true, as to carry away the stern of the hindermost
boat, and bring them to the necessity of taking down their sail, and
running all to the head of the boat to keep her from sinking; so she lay
by, and had enough of it; but seeing the foremost boat still crowd on
after us, we made ready to fire at her in particular.

While this was doing, one of the three boats that was behind, being
forwarder than the other two, made up to the boat which we had disabled,
to relieve her, and we could afterwards see her take out the men: we
called again to the foremost boat, and offered a truce to parley again,
and to know what was her business with us; but had no answer: only she
crowded close under our stern. Upon this our gunner, who was a very
dexterous fellow, run out his two chase-guns, and fired at her; but the
shot missing, the men in the boat shouted, waved their caps, and came
on; but the gunner, getting quickly ready again, fired among them a
second time; one shot of which, though it missed the boat itself, yet
fell in among the men, and we could easily see had done a great deal of
mischief among them; but we, taking no notice of that, weared the ship
again, and brought our quarter to bear upon them; and, firing three guns
more, we found the boat was split almost to pieces; in particular, her
rudder, and a piece of her stern, were shot quite away; so they handed
their sail immediately, and were in great disorder; but, to complete
their misfortune, our gunner let fly two guns at them again; where he
hit them we could not tell, but we found the boat was sinking, and some
of the men already in the water. Upon this I immediately manned out our
pinnace, which we had kept close by our side, with orders to pick up
some of the men, if they could, and save them from drowning, and
immediately to come on board with them; because we saw the rest of the
boats began to come up. Our men in the pinnace followed their orders,
and took up three men; one of which was just drowning, and it was a good
while before we could recover him. As soon as they were on board, we
crowded all the sail we could make, and stood farther out to sea; and we
found, that when the other three boats came up to the first two, they
gave over their chase.

Being thus delivered from a danger, which though I knew not the reason
of it, yet seemed to be much greater than I apprehended, I took care
that we should change our course, and not let any one imagine whither we
were going; so we stood out to sea eastward, quite out of the course of
all European ships, whether they were bound to China, or any where else
within the commerce of the European nations.

When we were now at sea, we began to consult with the two seamen, and
inquire first, what the meaning of all this should be? The Dutchman let
us into the secret of it at once; telling us, that the fellow that sold
us the ship, as we said, was no more than a thief that had run away with
her. Then he told us how the captain, whose name too he mentioned,
though I do not remember it now, was treacherously murdered by the
natives on the coast of Malacca, with three of his men; and that he,
this Dutchman, and four more, got into the woods, where they wandered
about a great while; till at length he, in particular, in a miraculous
manner, made his escape, and swam off to a Dutch ship, which sailing
near the shore, in its way from China, had sent their boat on shore for
fresh water; that he durst not come to that part of the shore where the
boat was, but made shift in the night to take in the water farther off,
and swimming a great while, at last the ship's boat took him up.

He then told us, that he went to Batavia, where two of the seamen
belonging to the ship had arrived, having deserted the rest in their
travels; and gave an account, that the fellow who had run away with the
ship, sold her at Bengal to a set of pirates, which were gone a-cruising
in her; and that they had already taken an English ship, and two Dutch
ships, very richly laden.

This latter part we found to concern us directly; and though we knew it
to be false, yet, as my partner said very well, if we had fallen into
their hands, and they had such a prepossession against us beforehand, it
had been in vain for us to have defended ourselves, or to hope for any
good quarters at their hands; especially considering that our accusers
had been our judges, and that we could have expected nothing from them
but what rage would have dictated, and ungoverned passion have executed;
and therefore it was his opinion, we should go directly back to Bengal,
from whence we came, without putting in at any port whatever; because
there we could give an account of ourselves, and could prove where we
were when the ship put in, whom we bought her of, and the like; and,
which was more than all the rest, if we were put to the necessity of
bringing it before the proper judges, we should be sure to have some
justice; and not be hanged first, and judged afterwards.

I was some time of my partner's opinion; but after a little more serious
thinking, I told him, I thought it was a very great hazard for us to
attempt returning to Bengal, for that we were on the wrong side of the
Straits of Malacca; and that if the alarm was given, we should be sure
to be waylaid on every side, as well by the Dutch of Batavia, as the
English elsewhere; that if we should be taken, as it were, running away,
we should even condemn ourselves, and there would want no more evidence
to destroy us. I also asked the English sailor's opinion, who said, he
was of my mind, and that we should certainly be taken.

This danger a little startled my partner, and all the ship's company;
and we immediately resolved to go away to the coast of Tonquin, and so
on to China; and from thence pursuing the first design, as to trade,
find some way or other to dispose of the ship, and come back in some of
the vessels of the country, such as we could get. This was approved of
as the best method for our security; and accordingly we steered away
N.N.E. keeping above fifty leagues off from the usual course to
the eastward.

This, however, put us to some inconvenience; for first the winds when we
came to that distance from the shore, seemed to be more steadily against
us, blowing almost trade as we call it, from the E. and E.N.E.; so that
we were a long while upon our voyage, and we were but ill provided with
victuals for so long a run; and, which was still worse, there was some
danger that those English and Dutch ships, whose boats pursued us,
whereof some were bound that way, might be got in before us; and if not,
some other ship bound to China might have information of us from them,
and pursue us with the same vigour.

I must confess I was now very uneasy, and thought myself, including the
last escape from the long boats, to have been in the most dangerous
condition that ever I was in through all my past life; for whatever ill
circumstances I had been in, I was never pursued for a thief before; nor
had I ever done any thing that merited the name of dishonest or
fraudulent, much less thievish. I had chiefly been mine own enemy; or,
as I may rightly say, I had been nobody's enemy but my own. But now I
was embarrassed in the worst condition imaginable; for though I was
perfectly innocent, I was in no condition to make that innocence appear:
and if I had been taken, it had been under a supposed guilt of the worst
kind; at least a crime esteemed so among the people I had to do with.

This made me very anxious to make an escape, though which way to do it I
knew not; or what port or place we should go to. My partner, seeing me
thus dejected, though he was the most concerned at first, began to
encourage me; and describing to me the several ports of the coast, told
me, he would put in on the coast of Cochinchina, or the bay of Tonquin;
intending to go afterwards to Macao, a town once in the possession or
the Portuguese, and where still a great many European families resided,
and particularly the missionary priests usually went thither, in order
to their going forward to China.

Hither we then resolved to go; and accordingly, though alter a tedious
and irregular course, and very much straitened for provisions, we came
within sight of the coast very early in the morning; and upon reflection
upon the past circumstances we were in, and the danger, if we had not
escaped, we resolved to put into a small river, which, however, had
depth enough of water for us, and to see if we could, either overland or
by the ship's pinnace, come to know what ships were in any port
thereabouts. This happy step was, indeed, our deliverance; for though we
did not immediately see any European ships in the bay of Tonquin, yet
the next morning there came into the bay two Dutch ships; and a third
without any colours; spread out, but which we believed to be a Dutchman,
passed by at about two leagues distance, steering for the coast of
China; and in the afternoon went by two English ships, steering the same
course; and thus we thought we saw ourselves beset with enemies, both
one way and the other. The place we were in was wild and barbarous, the
people thieves, even by occupation or profession; and though, it is
true, we had not much to seek of them, and except getting a few
provisions, cared not how little we had to do with them; yet it was with
much difficulty that we kept ourselves from being insulted by them
several ways.

We were in a small river of this country, within a few leagues of its
utmost limits northward, and by our boat we coasted north-east to the
point of land which opens to the great bay of Tonquin: and it was in
this beating up along the shore that we discovered as above, that, in a
word, we were surrounded with enemies. The people we were among were the
most barbarous of all the inhabitants of the coast; having no
correspondence with any other nation, and dealing only in fish and oil,
and such gross commodities; and it may be particularly seen that they
are, as I said, the most barbarous of any of the inhabitants, viz. that
among other customs they have this one, that if any vessel had the
misfortune to be shipwrecked upon their coast, they presently make the
men all prisoners; that is to say, slaves; and it was not long before we
found a spice of their kindness this way, on the occasion following:

I have observed above that our ship sprung a leak at sea, and that we
could not find it out: and however it happened, that, as I have said, it
was stopped unexpectedly, in the happy minute of our being to be seized
by the Dutch and English ships, near the bay of Siam; yet, as we did not
find the ship so perfectly tight and sound as we desired, we resolved,
while we were in this place, to lay her on shore, take out what heavy
things we had on hoard, which were not many, and to wash and clean her
bottom, and if possible to find out where the leaks were.

Accordingly, having lightened the ship, and brought all our guns, and
other moveable things, to one side, we tried to bring her down, that we
might come at her bottom; for, on second thoughts, we did not care to
lay her dry aground, neither could we find out a proper place for it.

The inhabitants, who had never been acquainted with such a sight, came
wondering down to the shore to look at us; and seeing the ship lie down
on one side in such a manner, and heeling towards the shore, and not
seeing our men, who were at work on her bottom with stages, and with
their boats, on the off side, they presently concluded that the ship was
cast away, and lay so very fast on the ground.

On this supposition they came all about us in two or three hours time,
with ten or twelve large boats, having some of them eight, some ten men
in a boat, intending, no doubt, to have come on board and plunder the
ship; and if they had found us there, to have carried us away for
slaves to their king, or whatever they call him, for we knew not who was
their governor.

When they came up to the ship, and began to row round her, they
discovered us all hard at work, on the outside of the ship's bottom and
side, washing, and graving, and stopping, as every seafaring man
knows how.

They stood for awhile gazing at us, and we, who were a little surprised,
could not imagine what their design was; but being willing to be sure,
we took this opportunity to get some of us into the ship, and others to
hand down arms and ammunition to those that were at work to defend
themselves with, if there should be occasion; and it was no more than
need; for in less than a quarter of an hour's consultation, they agreed,
it seems, that the ship was really a wreck; that we were all at work
endeavouring to save her, or to save our lives by the help of our boats;
and when we handed our arms into the boats, they concluded by that
motion that we were endeavouring to save some of our goods. Upon this
they took it for granted they all belonged to them, and away they came
directly upon our men, as if it had been in a line of battle.

Our men seeing so many of them began to be frighted, for we lay but in
an ill posture to fight, and cried out to us to know what they should
do? I immediately called to the men who worked upon the stages, to slip
them down and get up the side into the ship, and bade those in the boat
to row round and come on board; and those few of us who were on board
worked with all the strength and hands we had to bring the ship to
rights; but, however, neither the men upon the stage, nor those in the
boats, could do as they were ordered, before the Cochinchinese were upon
them, and with two of their boats boarded our long-boat, and began to
lay hold of the men as their prisoners.

The first man they laid hold of was an English seaman, a stout, strong
fellow, who having a musket in his hand, never offered to fire it, but
laid it down in the boat, like a fool as I thought. But he understood
his business better than I could teach him; for he grappled the Pagan,
and dragged him by main force out of their own boat into ours; where
taking him by the two ears, he beat his head so against the boat's
gunnel, that the fellow died instantly in his hands; and in the mean
time a Dutchman, who stood next, took up the musket, and with the
but-end of it so laid about him, that he knocked down five of them who
attempted to enter the boat. But this was little towards resisting
thirty or forty men, who fearless, because ignorant of their danger,
began to throw themselves into the long-boat, where we had but five men
to defend it. But one accident gave our men a complete victory, which
deserved our laughter rather than any thing else, and that was this:--

Our carpenter being prepared to grave the outside of the ship, as well
as to pay the seams where he had caulked her to stop the leaks, had got
two kettles just let down into the boat; one filled with boiling pitch,
and the other with rosin, tallow, and oil, and such stuff as the
shipwrights used for that work; and the man that tended the carpenter
had a great iron ladle in his hand, with which he supplied the men that
were at work with that hot stuff: two of the enemy's men entered the
boat just where this fellow stood, being in the fore-sheets; he
immediately sainted them with a ladleful of the stuff, boiling hot,
which so burnt and scalded them, being half naked, that they roared out
like two bulls, and, enraged with the fire, leaped both into the sea.
The carpenter saw it, and cried out, "Well done, Jack, give them some
more of it;" when stepping forward himself, he takes one of their mops,
and dipping it in the pitch-pot, he and his man threw it among them so
plentifully, that, in short, of all the men in three boats, there was
not one that was not scalded and burnt with it in a most frightful,
pitiful manner, and made such a howling and crying, that I never heard a
worse noise, and, indeed, nothing like it; for it was worth observing,
that though pain naturally makes all people cry out, yet every nation
have a particular way of exclamation, and make noises as different from
one another as their speech. I cannot give the noise these creatures
made a better name than howling, nor a name more proper to the tone of
it; for I never heard any thing more like the noise of the wolves,
which, as I have said, I heard howl in the forest on the frontiers of

I was never pleased with a victory better in my life; not only as it was
a perfect surprise to me, and that our danger was imminent before; but
as we got this victory without any bloodshed, except of that man the
fellow killed with his naked hands, and which I was very much concerned
at; for I was sick of killing such poor savage wretches, even though it
was in my own defence, knowing they came on errands which they thought
just, and knew no better; and that though it may be a just thing,
because necessary, for there is no necessary wickedness in nature; yet I
thought it was a sad life, when we must be always obliged to be killing
our fellow-creatures to preserve ourselves; and, indeed, I think so
still; and I would, even now, suffer a great deal, rather than I would
take away the life even of the worst person injuring me. I believe also,
all considering people, who know the value of life, would be of my
opinion, if they entered seriously into the consideration of it.

But to return to my story. All the while this was doing, my partner and
I, who managed the rest of the men on board, had, with great dexterity,
brought the ship almost to rights; and, having gotten the guns into
their places again, the gunner called to me to bid our boat get out of
the way, for he would let fly among them. I called back again to him,
and bid him not offer to fire, for the carpenter would do the work
without him; but bade him heat another pitch-kettle, which our cook, who
was on board, took care of. But the enemy was so terrified with what
they met with in their first attack, that they would not come on again;
and some of them that were farthest off, seeing the ship swim, as it
were, upright, began, as we supposed, to see their mistake, and gave
over the enterprise, finding it was not as they expected. Thus we got
clear of this merry fight; and having gotten some rice, and some roots
and bread, with about sixteen good big hogs on board two days before, we
resolved to stay here no longer, out go forward, whatever came of it;
for we made no doubt but we should be surrounded the next day with
rogues enough, perhaps more than our pitch-kettle would dispose of
for us.

We therefore got all our things on board the same evening, and the next
morning were ready to sail. In the meantime, lying at an anchor some
distance from the shore, we were not so much concerned, being now in a
lighting posture, as well as in a sailing posture, if any enemy had
presented. The next day, having finished our work within board, and
finding our ship was perfectly healed of all her leaks, we set sail. We
would have gone into the bay of Tonquin, for we wanted to inform
ourselves of what was to be known concerning the Dutch ships that had
been there; but we durst not stand in there, because we had seen several
ships go in, as we supposed, but a little before; so we kept on N.E.
towards the isle of Formosa, as much afraid of being seen by a Dutch or
English merchant-ship, as a Dutch or English merchant-ship in the
Mediterranean is of an Algerine man of war.

When we were thus got to sea, we kept on N.E. as if we would go to the
Manillas or the Philippine islands, and this we did, that we might not
fall into the way of any of the European ships; and then we steered
north again, till we came to the latitude of 22 degrees 20 minutes, by
which means we made the island of Formosa directly, where we came to an
anchor, in order to get water and fresh provisions, which the people
there, who are very courteous and civil in their manners, supplied us
with willingly, and dealt very fairly and punctually with us in all
their agreements and bargains, which is what we did not find among
other people, and may be owing to the remains of Christianity, which was
once planted here by a Dutch mission of Protestants, and is a testimony
of what I have often observed, viz. that the Christian religion always
civilizes the people and reforms their manners, where it is received,
whether it works saving effects upon them or not.

From hence we sailed still north, keeping the coast of China at an equal
distance, till we knew we were beyond all the ports of China where our
European ships usually come: but being resolved, if possible, not to
fall into any of their hands, especially in this country, where, as our
circumstances were, we could not fail of being entirely ruined; nay, so
great was my fear in particular, as to my being taken by them, that I
believe firmly I would much rather have chosen to fall into the hands of
the Spanish Inquisition.

Being now come to the latitude of 30 degrees, we resolved to put into
the first trading port we should come at, and standing in for the shore,
a boat came off two leagues to us, with an old Portuguese pilot on
board, who, knowing us to be an European ship, came to offer his
service, which indeed we were very glad of, and took him on board; upon
which, without asking us whither we would go, he dismissed the boat he
came in, and sent it back.

I thought it was now so much in our choice to make the old man carry us
whither we would, that I began to talk with him about carrying us to the
gulf of Nanquin, which is the most northern part of the coast of China.
The old man said he knew the gulf of Nanquin very well; but smiling,
asked us what we would do there?

I told him we would sell our cargo, and purchase China wares, calicoes,
raw silks, tea, wrought silks, &c. and so would return by the same
course we came. He told us our best port had been to have put in at
Macao, where we could not fail of a market for our opium to our
satisfaction, and might, for our money, have purchased all sorts of
China goods as cheap as we could at Nanquin.

Not being able to put the old man out of his talk, of which he was very
opinionated, or conceited, I told him we were gentlemen as well as
merchants, and that we had a mind to go and see the great city of Pekin,
and the famous court of the monarch of China. "Why then," says the old
man, "you should go to Ningpo, where, by the river that runs into the
sea there, you may go up within five leagues of the great canal. This
canal is a navigable made stream, which goes through the heart of all
that vast empire of China, crosses all the rivers, passes some
considerable hills by the help of sluices and gates, and goes up to the
city of Pekin, being in length near two hundred and seventy leagues."

"Well," said I, "Seignior Portuguese, but that is not our business now;
the great question is, if you can carry us up to the city of Nanquin,
from whence we can travel to Pekin afterwards?" Yes, he said, he could
do so very well, and there was a great Dutch ship gone up that way just
before. This gave me a little shock; a Dutch ship was now our terror,
and we had much rather have met the devil, at least if he had not come
in too frightful a figure; we depended upon it that a Dutch ship would
be our destruction, for we were in no condition to fight them; all the
ships they trade with in those parts being of great burden, and of much
greater force than we were.

The old man found me a little confused, and under some concern, when he
named a Dutch ship: and said to me, "Sir, you need be under no
apprehension of the Dutch; I suppose they are not now at war with your
nation."--"No," said I, "that's true; but I know not what liberties men
may take when they are out of the reach of the laws of their
country."--"Why," said he, "you are no pirates, what need you fear? They
will not meddle with peaceable merchants, sure."

If I had any blood in my body that did not fly up into my face at that
word, it was hindered by some stop in the vessels appointed by nature to
circulate it; for it put me into the greatest disorder and confusion
imaginable; nor was it possible for me to conceal it so, but that the
old man easily perceived it.

"Sir," said he, "I find you are in some disorder in your thoughts at my
talk; pray be pleased to go which way you think fit, and depend upon it
I'll do you all the service I can."--"Why, Seignior," said I, "it is
true, I am a little unsettled in my resolution at this time, whither to
go in particular; and I am something more so for what you said about
pirates. I hope there are no pirates in these seas; we are but in an ill
condition to meet with them; for you see we have but a small force, and
but very weakly manned."

"O Sir," said he, "do not be concerned; I do not know that there have
been any pirates in these seas these fifteen years, except one, which
was seen, as I hear, in the bay of Siam, about a month since; but you
may be assured she is gone to the southward; nor was she a ship of any
great force, or fit for the work; she was not built for a privateer, but
was run away with by a reprobate crew that were on board, after the
captain and some of his men had been murdered by the Malaccans, at or
near the island of Sumatra."

"What!" said I, seeming to know nothing of the matter, "did they murder
the captain?"--"No," said he, "I do not understand that they murdered
him; but as they afterwards ran away with the ship, it is generally
believed they betrayed him into the hands of the Malaccans, who did
murder him; and, perhaps, they procured them to do it."--"Why then,"
said I, "they deserved death, as much as if they had done it
themselves."--"Nay," said the old man, "they do deserve it, and they
will certainly have it if they light upon any English or Dutch ship; for
they have all agreed together that if they meet that rogue they will
give him no quarter."

"But," said I to him, "you say the pirate is gone out of these seas;
how can they meet with him then?"--"Why, that is true," said he, "they
do say so; but he was, as I tell you, in the bay of Siam, in the river
Cambodia, and was discovered there by some Dutchmen who belonged to the
ship, and who were left on shore when they ran away with her; and some
English and Dutch traders being in the river, they were within a little
of taking him. Nay," said he, "if the foremost boats had been well
seconded by the rest, they had certainly taken him; but he finding only
two boats within reach of him, tacked about, and fired at these two, and
disabled them before the others came up; and then standing off to sea,
the others were not able to follow him, and so he got away. But they
have all so exact a description of the ship, that they will be sure to
know him; and where-ever they find him, they have vowed to give no
quarter to either the captain or the seamen, but to hang them all up at
the yard-arm."

"What!" said I, "will they execute them, right or wrong; hang them
first, and judge them afterwards?"--"O Sir!" said the old pilot, "there
is no need to make a formal business of it with such rogues as those;
let them tie them back to back, and set them a-diving; it is no more
than they rightly deserve."

I knew I had my old man fast aboard, and that he could do me no harm; so
I turned short upon him. "Well, Seignior," said I, "and this is the very
reason why I would have you carry us to Nanquin, and not to put back to
Macao, or to any other part of the country where the English or Dutch
ships came; for be it known to you, Seignior, those captains of the
English and Dutch ships are a parcel of rash, proud, insolent fellows,
that neither know what belongs to justice, or how to behave themselves
as the laws of God and nature direct; but being proud of their offices,
and not understanding their power, they would get the murderers to
punish robbers; would take upon them to insult men falsely accused, and
determine them guilty without due inquiry; and perhaps I may live to
call some of them to an account of it, where they may be taught how
justice is to be executed; and that no man ought to be treated as a
criminal till some evidence may be had of the crime, and that he is
the man."

With this I told him, that this was the very ship they had attacked; and
gave him a full account of the skirmish we had with their boats, and how
foolishly and coward-like they had behaved. I told him all the story of
our buying the ship, and how the Dutchmen served us. I told him the
reasons I had to believe that this story of killing the master by the
Malaccans was not true; as also the running away with the ship; but that
it was all a fiction of their own, to suggest that the men were turned
pirates; and they ought to have been sure it was so, before they had
ventured to attack us by surprise, and oblige us so resist them; adding,
that they would have the blood of those men who were killed there, in
our just defence, to answer for.

The old man was amazed at this relation; and told us, we were very much
in the right to go away to the north; and that if he might advise us, it
should be to sell the ship in China, which we might very well do, and
buy or build another in the country; "And," said he, "though you will
not get so good a ship, yet you may get one able enough to carry you and
all your goods back again to Bengal, or any where else."

I told him I would take his advice when I came to any port where I could
find a ship for my turn, or get any customer to buy this. He replied, I
should meet with customers enough for the ship at Nanquin, and that a
Chinese junk would serve me very well to go back again; and that he
would procure me people both to buy one and sell the other.

"Well, but, Seignior," says I, "as you say they know the ship so well, I
may, perhaps, if I follow your measures, be instrumental to bring some
honest innocent men into a terrible broil, and, perhaps, be murdered in
cold blood; for wherever they find the ship they will prove the guilt
upon the men by proving this was the ship, and so innocent men may
probably be overpowered and murdered."--"Why," said the old man, "I'll
find out a way to prevent that also; for as I know all those commanders
you speak of very well, and shall see them all as they pass by, I will
be sure to set them to rights in the thing, and let them know that they
had been so much in the wrong; that though the people who were on board
at first might run away with the ship, yet it was not true that they had
turned pirates; and that in particular those were not the men that first
went off with the ship, but innocently bought her for their trade; and I
am persuaded they will so far believe me, as, at least, to act more
cautiously for the time to come."--"Well," said I, "and will you deliver
one message to them from me?"--"Yes, I will," says he, "if you will give
it under your hand in writing, that I may be able to prove it came from
you, and not out of my own head." I answered, that I would readily give
it him under my hand. So I took a pen and ink, and paper, and wrote at
large the story of assaulting me with the long-boats, &c. the pretended
reason of it, and the unjust, cruel design of it; and concluded to the
commanders that they had done what they not only should have been
ashamed or, but also, that if ever they came to England, and I lived to
see them there, they should all pay dearly for it, if the laws of my
country were not grown out of use before I arrived there.

My old pilot read this over and over again, and asked me several times
if I would stand to it. I answered, I would stand to it as long as I had
any thing left in the world; being sensible that I should, one time or
other, find an opportunity to put it home to them. But we had no
occasion ever to let the pilot carry this letter, for he never went back
again. While those things were passing between us, by way of discourse,
we went forward directly for Nanquin, and, in about thirteen days sail,
came to anchor at the south-west point of the great gulf of Nanquin;
where, by the way, I came by accident to understand, that the two Dutch
ships were gone that length before me, and that I should certainly fall
into their hands. I consulted my partner again in this exigency, and he
was as much at a loss as I was, and would very gladly have been safe on
shore almost any where. However, I was not in such perplexity neither,
but I asked the old pilot if there was no creek or harbour, which I
might put into, and pursue my business with the Chinese privately, and
be in no danger of the enemy. He told me if I would sail to the
southward about two-and-forty leagues, there was a little port called
Quinchang, where the fathers of the mission usually landed from Macao,
on their progress to teach the Christian religion to the Chinese, and
where no European ships ever put in: and, if I thought proper to put in
there, I might consider what farther course to take when I was on shore.
He confessed, he said, it was not a place for merchants, except that at
some certain times they had a kind of a fair there, when the merchants
from Japan came over thither to buy the Chinese merchandises.

We all agreed to go back to this place: the name of the port, as he
called it, I may, perhaps, spell wrong, for I do not particularly
remember it, having lost this, together with the names of many other
places set down in a little pocket-book, which was spoiled by the water,
on an accident which I shall relate in its order; but this I remember,
that the Chinese or Japanese merchants we correspond with call it by a
different name from that which our Portuguese pilot gave it, and
pronounced it as above, Quinchang.

As we were unanimous in our resolutions to go to this place, we weighed
the next day, having only gone twice on shore, where we were to get
fresh water; on both which occasions the people of the country were very
civil to us, and brought us abundance of things to sell to us; I mean of
provisions, plants, roots, tea, rice, and some fowls; but nothing
without money.

We came to the other port (the wind being contrary) not till five days;
but it was very much to our satisfaction, and I was joyful, and I may
say thankful, when I set my foot safe on shore, resolving, and my
partner too, that if it was possible to dispose of ourselves and effects
any other way, though not every way to our satisfaction, we would never
set one foot on board that unhappy vessel again: and indeed I must
acknowledge, that of all the circumstances of life that ever I had any
experience of, nothing makes mankind so completely miserable as that of
being in constant fear. Well does the Scripture say, "The fear of man
brings a snare;" it is a life of death, and the mind is so entirely
suppressed by it, that it is capable of no relief; the animal spirits
sink, and all the vigour of nature, which usually supports men under
other afflictions, and is present to them in the greatest exigencies,
fails them here.

Nor did it fail of its usual operations upon the fancy, by heightening
every danger; representing the English and Dutch captains to be men
incapable of hearing reason, or distinguishing between honest men and
rogues; or between a story calculated for our own turn, made out of
nothing, on purpose to deceive, and a true genuine account of our whole
voyage, progress, and design; for we might many ways have convinced any
reasonable creature that we were not pirates; the goods we had on board,
the course we steered, our frankly shewing ourselves, and entering into
such and such ports; even our very manner, the force we had, the number
of men, the few arms, little ammunition, and short provisions; all these
would have served to convince any man that we were no pirates. The
opium, and other goods we had on board, would make it appear the ship
had been at Bengal; the Dutchmen, who, it was said, had the names of all
the men that were in the ship, might easily see that we were a mixture
of English, Portuguese, and Indians, and but two Dutchmen on board.
These, and many other particular circumstances, might have made it
evident to the understanding of any commander, whose hands we might
fall into, that we were no pirates.

But fear, that blind useless passion, worked another way, and threw us
into the vapours; it bewildered our understandings, and set the
imagination at work, to form a thousand terrible things, that, perhaps,
might never happen. We first supposed, as indeed every body had related
to us, that the seamen on board the English and Dutch ships, but
especially the Dutch, were so enraged at the name of a pirate, and
especially at our beating off their boats, and escaping, that they would
not give themselves leave to inquire whether we were pirates or no; but
would execute us off-hand, as we call it, without giving us any room for
a defence. We reflected that there was really so much apparent evidence
before them, that they would scarce inquire after any more: as, first,
that the ship was certainly the same, and that some of the seamen among
them knew her, and had been on board her; and, secondly, that when we
had intelligence at the river Cambodia, that they were coming down to
examine us, we fought their boats, and fled: so that we made no doubt
but they were as fully satisfied of our being pirates as we were
satisfied of the contrary; and I often said, I knew not but I should
have been apt to have taken the like circumstances for evidence, if the
tables were turned, and my case was theirs; and have made no scruple of
cutting all the crew to pieces, without believing, or perhaps
considering, what they might have to offer in their defence.

But let that be how it will, those were our apprehensions; and both my
partner and I too scarce slept a night without dreaming of halters and
yard-arms; that is to say, gibbets; of fighting, and being taken; of
killing, and being killed; and one night I was in such a fury in my
dream, fancying the Dutchmen had boarded us, and I was knocking one of
their seamen down, that I struck my double fist against the side of the
cabin I lay in, with such a force as wounded my hand most gievously,
broke my knuckles, and cut and bruised the flesh, so that it not only
waked me out of my sleep, but I was once afraid I should have lost two
of my fingers.

Another apprehension I had, was, of the cruel usage we should meet with
from them, if we fell into their hands: then the story of Amboyna came
into my head, and how the Dutch might, perhaps, torture us, as they did
our countrymen there; and make some of our men, by extremity of torture,
confess those crimes they never were guilty of; own themselves, and all
of us, to be pirates; and so they would put us to death, with a formal
appearance of justice; and that they might be tempted to do this for the
gain of our ship and cargo, which was worth four or five thousand
pounds, put all together.

These things tormented me, and my partner too, night and day; nor did we
consider that the captains of ships have no authority to act thus; and
if we had surrendered prisoners to them, they could not answer the
destroying us, or torturing us, but would be accountable for it when
they came into their own country. This, I say, gave me no satisfaction;
for, if they will act thus with us, what advantage would it be to us
that they would be called to an account for it? or, if we were first to
be murdered, what satisfaction would it be to us to have them punished
when they came home?

I cannot refrain taking notice here what reflections I now had upon the
past variety of my particular circumstances; how hard I thought it was,
that I, who had spent forty years in a life of continued difficulties,
and was at last come, as it were, at the port or haven which all men
drive at, viz. to have rest and plenty, should be a volunteer in new
sorrows, by my own unhappy choice; and that I, who had escaped so many
dangers in my youth, should now come to be hanged, in my old age, and in
so remote a place, for a crime I was not in the least inclined to, much
less guilty of; and in a place and circumstance, where innocence was not
like to be any protection at all to me.

After these thoughts, something of religion would come in; and I would
be considering that this seemed to me to be a disposition of immediate
Providence; and I ought to look upon it, and submit to it as such: that
although I was innocent as to men, I was far from being innocent as to
my Maker; and I ought to look in, and examine what other crimes in my
life were most obvious to me, and for which Providence might justly
inflict this punishment as a retribution; and that I ought to submit to
this, just as I would to a shipwreck, if it had pleased God to have
brought such a disaster upon me.

In its turn, natural courage would sometimes take its place; and then I
would be talking myself up to vigorous resolution, that I would not be
taken to be barbarously used by a parcel of merciless wretches in cold
blood; that it was much better to have fallen into the hands of the
savages, who were men-eaters, and who, I was sure, would feast upon me,
when they had taken me, than by those who would perhaps glut their rage
upon me by inhuman tortures and barbarities: that, in the case of the
savages, I always resolved to die fighting to the last gasp; and why
should I not do so now, seeing it was much more dreadful, to me at
least, to think of falling into these men's hands, than ever it was to
think of being eaten by men? for the savages, give them their due, would
not eat a man till he was dead; and killed him first, as we do a
bullock; but that these men had many arts beyond the cruelty of death.
Whenever these thoughts prevailed I was sure to put myself into a kind
of fever, with the agitations of a supposed fight; my blood would boil,
and my eyes sparkle, as if I was engaged; and I always resolved that I

Book of the day: