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board for 120 men, and only forty-seven men in his ship. Another mutiny happened at St Sebastians by the treachery of an Irishman, when Mr Knivet and other six persons were left on shore.

[Footnote 65: Sir Thomas Candish seems not to have been aware, that the month of May, in these high antarctic or southern latitudes, was precisely analogous with November in the high latitudes of the north, and therefore utterly unfit for navigation.–E.]

Intending again to have attempted passing through the straits, he was tossed up and down in the tempestuous seas of the Southern Atlantic, and came even at one time within two leagues of St Helena, but was unable to reach that island. In his last letter, he declares that, rather than return to England after so many disasters, he would willingly have gone ashore in an island placed in lat. 8 deg. in the charts. In this letter, he states himself to be then scarcely able to hold a pen; and we learn that he soon afterwards died of grief. The Leicester, in which Candish sailed, came home, as did the Desire. The Black pinnace was lost; but the fates of the Roebuck and the Dainty are no where mentioned.

The miscarriage of this voyage was certainly prejudicial to the rising trade and spirit of naval adventure in England. The ruin of Sir Thomas Candish threw a damp on such undertakings among the English gentlemen; and, on the return of these ships, several able and experienced seamen were turned adrift, to gain their livings as they best might. These thorough-bred seamen went to other countries; and, as knowledge is a portable commodity, they made the best market they could of their nautical experience in Holland and elsewhere. Among these was one Mr Mellish, who had been a favourite of Sir Thomas Candish, and the companion of all his voyages. This person offered his services to the East India Company of Holland, then in its infancy; and, his proposals being accepted, he was employed as pilot in the circumnavigation of Oliver van Noort, which falls next in order to be related.

Sec. 3. _Continuation of the Voyage of the Desire, Captain Davis, after parting from Sir Thomas Candish_.

Not finding our general at Port Desire, as we had expected, and being very slenderly provided, without sails, boat, oars, nails, cordage, and other necessary stores, and very short of victuals, we were reduced to a very unpleasant situation, not knowing how to proceed. Leaving ourselves, however, to the providence of the Almighty, we entered the harbour, and, by the good favour of God, we found a quiet and safe road, which we knew not of before. Having moored our ship, by the help of the boat belonging to the Black pinnace, we landed on the southern shore of the bay, where we found a standing pool, which might contain some ten tons of fresh water, by which we were greatly relieved and comforted. From this pool we took more than forty tons of water, yet left it as full as at first. At our former visit to this harbour, we were at this very place and found no water, wherefore we persuaded ourselves that the Almighty had sent this pool for our relief. We found here such remarkably low ebbs as we had never before seen, by means of which we procured muscles in great plenty. Providence also sent such great abundance of smelts about our ship, that all the people were able to take as many as they could eat, with hooks made of crooked pins. By these means we husbanded the ship’s provisions, and did not spend any of them during our abode at this place.

Considering what was best to be done in our present circumstances, that we might find our general, and as it was obvious we could not refit our ship for sea in less than a month, our captain and master concluded to take the pinnace and go in search of the general, leaving the ship and a considerable part of the men till the return of the general, who had vowed he would return again to the straits. Hearing of this determination, two pestilent fellows, named Charles Parker and Edward Smith, secretly represented to the men, that the captain and master meant to leave them to be devoured by cannibals, and had no intention to come back; on which the whole company secretly agreed to murder the captain, master, and all those who were thought their friends, among whom I was included. This conspiracy was fortunately known to our boatswain, who revealed it to the master, and he to the captain. To appease this mutiny the captain found it necessary to desist from his intentions, and it was concluded not to depart, but to wait at Port Desire for the return of the general. After this the whole company, with one consent, made a written testimonial of the circumstances by which we had lost company of the general, and the indispensable necessity of returning home.

In this testimony or protest, dated Port Desire, 2d June, 1592, it is represented, that the shrouds of the ship are all rotten, the ropes all so decayed that they could not be trusted; the sails reduced to one shift all worn, of which the topsails were utterly unable to abide any stress of weather; the ship unprovided with pitch, tar, or nails for repairs of any kind, and no means of supplying these wants; the provisions reduced to five hogsheads of salt pork, and such quantity of meal as admitted only an allowance of three ounces for a man each day, and no drink remaining except water. This instrument is signed by John Davis and Randolph Cotton, the captains of the Desire and Black pinnace, and thirty-eight more, but the name John Jane, or Lane, does not appear among them.

After this, they proceeded to refit the ship with all expedition, for which purpose they built a smith’s forge, making charcoal for its supply, and made nails, bolts, and spikes. Others of the crew were employed in making ropes from a piece of cable; and others again in all the necessary repairs of the ship, sails, and rigging; while those not fit for such offices, gathered muscles and caught smelts for the whole company. Three leagues from Port Desire there is an island, having four small isles about it, on which there are great abundance of seals, and where likewise penguins resort in vast numbers at the breeding season. To this island it was resolved to dispatch the Black pinnace occasionally, to fetch seals for us to eat, when smelts and muscles failed, for we could get no muscles at neap-tides, and only when the ebb was very low.

In this miserable and forlorn condition we remained till the 6th of August, 1592, still keeping watch on the hills to look out for our general, suffering extreme anguish and vexation. Our hope of the general’s return becoming very cold, our captain and master were persuaded that he might have gone directly for the straits; wherefore it was concluded to go there and wait his coming, as there we could not possibly miss seeing him if he came. This being agreed to by the whole company, we set sail from Port Desire on the 6th August, and went to Penguin island, where we salted twenty hogsheads of seals, which was as much as our salt could do. We departed from Penguin island towards night of the 7th August, intending for the straits. The 14th we were driven among certain islands, never before discovered, fifty leagues or better from the shore, east-northerly from the straits.[66] Fortunately the wind shifted to the east, or we must have inevitably perished among these islands, and we were enabled to shape our course for the straits.

[Footnote 66: These are doubtless the Falkland Islands, or Malouines, but to which no name seems to have been affixed on this occasion.–E.]

We fell in with the cape [Virgin] on the 18th of August, in a very thick fog, and that same night came to anchor ten leagues within the straits’ mouth. The 19th we passed the first and second narrows, doubled Cape Froward on the 21st, and anchored on the 22d in a cove, or small bay, which we named _Savage Cove_, because we here found savages. Notwithstanding the excessive coldness of this place, yet do these people go entirely naked, living in the woods like satyrs, painted and disguised in a strange manner, and fled from us like so many wild deer. They were very strong and agile, and threw stones at us, of three or four pounds weight, from an incredible distance. We departed from this cove on the 24th in the morning, and came that same day into the N.W. reach of the straits, which is its last or most western reach. On the 25th we anchored in a good cove, within fourteen leagues of the South Sea, where we proposed to await the return of our general, as the strait at this place is only three miles broad, and he could not possibly pass unseen.

After we had remained here a fortnight, in the depth of winter, our victuals fast consuming, and our salted seals stinking most vilely, our men fell sick and died pitifully, through famine and cold, as most of them had not clothes sufficient to defend them from the extreme rigour of winter. In this heavy distress, our captain and master thought it best to depart from the straits into the South Sea, and to proceed for the island of Santa Maria in lat. 37 deg. S. on the coast of Chili, which is situated in a temperate climate, where we might find relief, and could wait for our general, who must necessarily pass by that island. We accordingly set sail on the 13th September, and came in sight of the South Sea. The 14th we were driven back into the straits, and got into a cove three leagues from the South Sea. We again stood out, and being eight or ten leagues free of the land, the wind rose furiously at W.N.W. and we were again forced to return into the straits, not daring to trust to our sails in any stress of weather. We again got into the cove, three leagues from the eastern mouth of the straits, where we had such violent weather that one of our two remaining cables broke, and we were almost in despair of saving our lives. Yet it pleased God to allay the fury of the storm, and we unreeved our sheets, tacks, halyards, and other ropes, and made fast our ship to the trees on shore, close by the rocks. We laboured hard to recover our anchor again, which we could not possibly effect, being, as we supposed, entirely covered over in the ooze.

We were now reduced to one anchor, which had only one whole fluke; and had only one old cable, already spliced in two places, and a piece of another old cable. In this extremity of trouble it pleased God that the wind came fair on the 1st October, on which we loosed our land fastnings with all expedition, weighed our anchor, and towed off into the channel; for we had repaired our boat when in Port Desire, and got five oars from the Black pinnace. On weighing our anchor we found the cable sore broken, holding only by one strand, which was a most merciful preservation. We now reeved our ropes and rigged our ship the best we could, every man working as if to save our lives in the utmost extremity. Our company was now much divided in opinion as to how we should proceed for the best; some desiring to return to Port Desire, to be there set on shore, and endeavour to travel by land to some of the Spanish settlements, while others adhered to the captain and master: But at length, by the persuasion of the master, who promised that they would find wheat, pork, and roots in abundance at the island of St Mary, besides the chance of intercepting some ships on the coasts of Chili and Peru, while nothing but a cruel death by famine could be looked for in attempting to return by the Atlantic, they were prevailed upon to proceed.

So, on the 2d of October, 1592, we again made sail into the South Sea, and got free from the land. This night the wind again began to blow very strong at west, and increased with such violence that we were in great doubt what measures to pursue. We durst not put into the straits for lack of ground tackle, neither durst we carry sail, the tempest being very furious, and our sails very bad. In this extremity the pinnace bore up to us, informing she had received many heavy seas, and that her ropes were continually failing, so that they knew not what to do; but, unable to afford her any relief; we stood on our course in view of a lee shore, continually dreading a ruinous end of us all. The 4th October the storm increased to an extreme violence; when the pinnace, being to windward, suddenly _struck a hull_, when we thought she had sustained some violent shock of a sea, or had sprung a leak, or that her sails had failed, because she did not follow us. But we durst not _hull_ in this unmerciful storm, sometimes _trying_ under our main-course, sometimes with a _haddock_ of our sail; for our ship was very _leeward_, and laboured hard in the sea. This night we lost sight of the pinnace, and never saw her again.

The 5th October, our foresail split, on which our master brought the mizen-sail to the foremast to make the ship work, and we mended our foresail with our spritsail. The storm still continued to rage with the most extreme fury, with hail, snow, rain, and wind, such and so mighty that it could not possibly in nature be worse; the seas running so lofty, and with a continual breach, that we many times were in doubt whether our ship did sink or swim. The 10th, the weather dark, the storm as furious as ever, most of the men having given over labour from fatigue and in despair, and being near the lee-shore by the reckoning both of the captain and master, we gave ourselves up for lost, past all remedy. While in this extremity of distress, the sun suddenly shone out clear, by which the captain and master were enabled to ascertain the latitude, and thereby knew what course to steer, so as to recover the straits. Next day, the 11th October, we saw Cape Deseado, being the southern point of the entrance into the straits, for the northern point is a dangerous assemblage of rocks, shoals, and islands. The cape was now two leagues to leeward, and the master was even in doubt whether we might be able to steer clear of it; but there was no remedy, as we must either succeed or be irretrievably lost.

Our master, being a man of spirit, made quick dispatch, and steered for the straits. Our sails had not been half an hour abroad for this purpose when the foot-rope of the fore-sail broke, so nothing held save the oilet-holes. The sea continually broke over our poop, and dashed with such violence against our sails, that we every moment looked to have them torn to pieces, or that the ship would overset. To our utter discomfort also, we perceived that she fell still more and more to leeward, so that we could not clear the cape. We were now within half a mile of the cape, and so near shore that the counter surge of the sea so rebounded against the side of our ship, that the horrors of our situation were undescribably awful. While in this utmost extremity, the wind and the sea raging beyond measure, and momentarily expecting to be driven upon the rocks, our master veered away some of the main-sheet: Whether owing to this, or by some counter current, or by the wonderful interposition of God, our ship quickened her way and shot past the rock, where we all thought she must have perished. Between this and the cape there was a small bay, so that we were now somewhat farther from the shore; but on coming to the cape, we again looked for nothing but instant death; yet God, the father of mercy, delivered us, and we doubled the cape little more than the length of our ship. When past the cape, we took in all our sails, and, being between the high lands, the wind _blowing trade_, or steadily in the direction of the straits, we spooned before the sea under bare poles, three men being unable to manage the helm, and in six hours we were driven twenty-five leagues within the straits.

In this time we freed our ship from water, and when we had rested a while, our men became unable to move, their sinews being stiff, and their flesh as if dead. Many of them were so covered and eaten with lice, that there lay clusters of them in their flesh as large as peas, yea, some as big as beans. In this state of misery we were constrained to put into a cove to refresh our men, where we moored to the trees as we had done before, our only anchor being to seaward. We here continued till the 20th of October; and being unable to continue longer, through the extremity of famine, we again put off into the channel on the 22d, the weather being then reasonably calm. Before night the wind blew hard at W.N.W. The storm waxed so violent that our men could scarcely stand to their labour; and the straits being full of turnings and windings, we had to trust entirely to the discretion of the captain and master to guide the ship during the darkness of the night, when we could see no shore, and the straits were in some places scarcely three miles broad. When we first passed these straits, our captain made so excellent a draught of them, as I am confident cannot in any sort be made more correct. Which draught he and the master so carefully considered, that they had every turning, creek, and head-land so perfectly in their memory, as enabled them, even in the deepest darkness of the night, undoubtingly to convey the ship through that crooked channel.

The 25th October we came to an island in the straits, named Penguine Isle, where the boat was sent ashore to seek relief, as it abounded with birds, and the weather was calm; so we came to anchor near the island, in seven fathoms. While the boat was ashore, where we got abundance of penguins, there rose a sudden storm, by which our ship was driven over a breach, and our boat sunk at the shore. Captain Cotton and the lieutenant, who were both on shore, leapt into the boat, and freed it of water, throwing away the birds, and with great difficulty got back to the ship. All this time the ship was driving upon the lee-shore; and when we got on board, we helped to weigh the anchor and make sail. Thus, in a severe storm, we got clear of the straits on the 27th October; and on the 30th we got to that Penguin Island which is three leagues from Port Desire, where we purposed to seek relief. Immediately on coming to this isle, our boat was sent ashore, and returned laden with birds and eggs, the men reporting that the penguins were so thick on the isle, that even ships might be laden with them, as they could not step without treading on these birds; at which news we greatly rejoiced.

Then the captain appointed Charles Parker and Edmund Smith, with twenty others, to go on shore, and remain on the island, on purpose to kill and dry these penguins: promising to send others when the ship was safe in harbour, not only for expedition, but to save the small store of victuals that remained in the ship. But Parker and Smith, with the rest of their faction, remembering that this was the place where they intended formerly to have slain the captain and master, thought it was meant here to leave them on shore out of revenge, and refused to land. After some altercation, these men were allowed to proceed in the ship, and ten others were left in the island. The last day of October we entered the harbour of Port Desire. The master, having at our being there before taken notice of every creek in the river, ran our ship aground in a very convenient place on the sandy ooze, laying our anchor out to seawards, and mooring her with the running ropes to stakes on shore, in which situation the ship remained till our departure.

The 3d November our boat was sent off for Penguin Island, with wood and water, and as many men as she could carry; but, being deep laden, she durst not proceed, and returned again the same night. Then Parker, Smith, Townsend, Purpet, and five others, desired that they might go by land, and that the boat might fetch them from the shore opposite the isle, being scarcely a mile across. The captain bid them do as they thought best, only advised them to carry weapons, as they might meet with savages; so they accordingly carried calivers, swords, and targets, departing by land on the 6th November, while the boat went by sea. But these nine men were never more heard of. On the 11th, when most of our men were at the island, only the captain, master, and five more remaining in the ship, there came a great multitude of savages to the shore beside the ship, throwing dust into the air, leaping and running about like so many beasts, having vizards on their faces like dogs, or else their faces actually resembled dogs. We greatly feared they would have set the ship on fire, for they would suddenly make fire, at which we were greatly astonished. They came to windward of the ship, and set the bushes on fire, so that we were enveloped in a very stinking smoke; but coming within shot of us, we fired at them, and hitting one on the thigh, they all fled instantly away, and we never heard or saw them more. Hence we judged that these savages had slain our nine men, who were the ringleaders of those who would formerly have murdered our captain and master, with the rest of their friends; so that God evidently drew just judgment upon them, and we supplicated his divine Majesty to be merciful to us.

While we lay in this harbour, our captain and master went one day in the boat to see how far the river could be penetrated, that if need enforced us, it might be known how far we might proceed by water. They found that this river was only navigable by the boat for twenty miles. On their return, the boat was sent to Penguin Island, by which we learnt that the penguins dried to our entire satisfaction, and were in infinite numbers. This penguin is shaped like a bird, having stumps only in place of wings, by which it swims under water as swiftly as any fish. They live upon smelts, which are found in vast abundance on this coast. In eating, these penguins seem neither fish nor flesh. They lay large eggs; and the bird is about as large as two ducks. All the time we remained at Port Desire, we fared well on penguins and their eggs, young seals, young gulls, and other birds of which I know not the names, all of which we had in vast abundance. In this place also we found plenty of an herb called scurvy-grass, which we eat fried in seal-oil along with eggs, which so purified the blood, that it entirely removed all kind of swellings, of which many had died, and restored us all to as perfect health as when we first left England.

We remained in this harbour till the 22d of December, 1592, in which time we had dried 20,000 penguins. In this time also the captain, with the master and I, made some salt, by filling some holes in the rocks with sea-water, which in six days was changed to salt by evaporation, it being now Midsummer in this southern hemisphere. Thus did God feed us in the desert, even as with manna from heaven. The 22d December we departed from Port Desire for Penguin island, where, with great difficulty, we got 14,000 of the dried birds on board, during which we had nearly lost our captain; and had not our master been very expert in the set of the tides, which ran in many cross directions, we had lost our ship.

We now shaped our course for Brazil, under a regulated allowance of provisions, so that our victuals might last six months, in which time we hoped we might get back to England, though our sails were very bad. This allowance was, two ounces and a half of meal for each man, two days only in the week, or five ounces for a week; three days a week, three spoonfulls of oil were allowed to each man; two days a week, a pint of peas among four men; and every day five dried penguins among four men, with six quarts of water each day to four men. With this allowance, praised be God, we lived, though weak and feeble.

The 30th January, 1593, we arrived at the isle of Placencia, or Ilha Grande, in Brazil, the first place at which we touched when outwards bound. The ship laying off at sea, the captain went aland in the boat with twenty-four men, being the whole night before he could reach the shore. He landed next day at sun-rise, hoping to catch the Portuguese in their houses, and by that means to procure a supply of casava meal; but on coming to the houses, we found them all burnt to the ground, so that we thought no one had remained on the island. The captain then went to the gardens, whence he brought a quantity of fruits and roots for the company, and returned on board. He then brought the ship into a fine creek, where she was moored to the trees on each side, at a place where we had plenty of fresh water. Our case being very desperate, we presently set to work to trim and repair our water-casks, the coopers making new hoops; while others laboured to repair the sails, keeping always a guard on shore, and every man having always his weapons ready at hand. The 3d February, thirty men well armed went to the gardens, three miles from where the ship lay, to dig cassavi-roots, to serve our company instead of bread. This was again repeated on the 5th. They laboured in quietness all the morning; and about ten o’clock, the heat being extreme, they came to a rock near the side of the wood, where they boiled cassavi-roots for dinner. After dinner, some went to sleep, and others to bathe in the sea, no one keeping watch, not a match lighted, nor even a piece charged. While in this unprovided state, and out of sight from the ship, there came suddenly upon them a multitude of Portuguese and Indians, who slew them all to the number of thirteen, two only escaping, one of these very sore hurt, and the other not touched, from whom we learnt the circumstances of this sad massacre.

We manned the boat with all speed, and went ashore, if happily we might succour our men; but we found them all slain, and laid naked in a row, with their faces upwards, and a cross set up beside them. We saw also two large pinnaces coming from Rio de Janeiro, full of men, who, as we supposed, were intended to take us. We were now much reduced, as of seventy-six persons we had on board when we left England, there were now only twenty-seven of us remaining, thirty-two having died formerly, and thirteen being slain in this place. Between those formerly slain by the savages at Port Desire, and those now in the island of Placencia by the Portuguese, all those who had conspired to murder our captain and master were now cut off, the gunner only excepted. Our casks were so greatly decayed, that we could not take in a sufficient supply of water, and what we had was exceedingly bad. Having lost several muskets on shore, which had belonged to our slain men, with good store of powder and shot, we expected to be beaten from our decks by means of our own weapons, by the Portuguese on the island, joined by those coming from Janeiro: and as we were moored to the trees, for want of cables and anchors, we were in dread of having our mooring ropes cut. In this miserable state we knew not what measures to pursue. To depart with only eight tons of bad water, and in bad casks, were to run the risk of starving at sea, and to remain seemed inevitable ruin. These were severe alternatives; but in our perplexity we preferred trusting to the hand of God than to the mercy of our enemies, and concluded to depart. Wherefore, on the 6th February, we unmoored and removed our ship into the channel, putting all our ordnance and small arms in readiness in case of an assault, and having a small gale of wind, we put to sea in deep distress.

Thus bemoaning our sad estate, and recounting our past misfortunes, we came to Cape Frio; being much crossed for three weeks by contrary winds, and our water running short, we were reduced to the utmost distress and perplexity. Some of the people were desirous of going into Bahia, and submitting to the Portuguese, rather than die of thirst; but our captain persuaded them against this measure. In this extremity, it pleased God to send us such abundant rain, that we were enabled to supply ourselves with water. On getting into the hot climate near the line, our dried penguins began to corrupt, and there bred in them many loathsome worms, an inch in length. These worms increased with astonishing rapidity, devouring our victuals so fast that we now seemed doomed to die of famine, as before of thirst We were even in danger of being eaten up by these worms, which devoured every thing except iron. They so gnawed the timbers of our ship, that we feared they would eat holes through her sides. We used every possible contrivance to destroy these noisome vermin, but they seemed only to increase so much the more, so that at last they would eat our flesh, and bite us like mosquitoes when we were asleep.

In this woeful plight, after we had passed the equator towards the north, our men began to fall sick of a most terrible disease, such as, I believe, was never before heard of. It began with a swelling in their ankles, which in two days rose up as high as their breasts, so that they could not breathe. It then fell into the scrotum, which, with the penis, swelled in a most grievous manner, so that they could neither stand, walk, nor lie; and many of them became frantic with grief and distress. Our captain, with extreme distress of mind, was in so miserable a condition, that he wished to die; yet, while scarcely able to speak for sorrow, he continued to exhort us all to patience and reliance on God, desiring us to accept our chastisement like dutiful and thankful children. In this state of misery and wretchedness, several died raving mad, and others in a most loathsome state, or in dreadful pain and agony. None in the ship remained in perfect health, except the captain and one boy; the master also, though oppressed with extreme labour and anxiety, bore up with spirit, so that his disease did not overcome him.

At length all our men died except sixteen, five only of whom were able to move. These were, the captain, who was in good health, the master indifferent, Captain Cotton and myself swollen and short-winded, yet better than the other sick men, and the boy in good health. Upon us five the whole labour of the ship rested. The captain and master, as happened to be necessary, took in and left out the topsails. The master by himself attended to the sprit-sail, and all of us the capstan, being utterly unable to work sheets and tacks. Our misery and weakness were so extreme, that we were utterly unable to take in or set a sail; so that our top-sails and sprit-sail were at length torn in pieces by the weather. The captain and master had to take their turns at the helm, where they were inexpressibly grieved and distressed by the continual and sad lamentations of our few remaining sick men.

Thus lost wanderers on the ocean, unable to help ourselves, it pleased God, on the 11th of June, 1593, that we arrived at Beerhaven in Ireland, and ran the ship there on shore. The Irish helped us to take in our sails, and to moor the ship so as to float her off next tide; for which slender aid it cost the captain ten pounds, before he could get the ship into a state of safety. Thus, without men, sails, victuals, or other means, God alone guided us into Ireland. Here the captain left the master and three or four more of the company to keep the ship; and within five days after our arrival, he and some others got a passage in a fishing-boat to Padstow in Cornwall. For the merciful preservation of this our small remnant, and our restoration to our country, be all honour and glory to God, now and for ever.–_Amen_.



* * * * *


The inhabitants of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, after their separation from the Spanish monarchy, found themselves extremely at a loss for means to supply the expences of the long and vigorous war in which they were engaged for the defence of their liberties. This gave them the more uneasiness, as their great enemy, Philip II. carried on the war against them, more by the length of his purse than the force of his arms, and because the riches, of the Spanish monarchy were derived from sources of commerce and colonization that were prohibited to them, even if they had submitted themselves to the yoke of Spain. The sense, therefore, of these difficulties, joined to the vast advantages they were likely to reap by overcoming them, induced the government and people of Holland to prosecute the advancement of trade in general with the greatest vigour, and particularly to establish a commercial intercourse with the East and West Indies, the great sources of wealth to their tyrannical oppressor and enemy, from whom they had revolted.

[Footnote 67: Harris, I. 31.–Two editions of this voyage were published in Dutch, both in folio; one at Rotterdam without date; and the other at Amsterdam in 1602. _Bib, Univer. des Voyages_, I. 115.]

Among other inducements to this course of proceeding, they were not a little encouraged by the progress made by their neighbours, the English; seeing that even private persons, and with a small force, had been able to disquiet the Spaniards exceedingly; and had at the same time acquired great riches to themselves. Another cause of attempting expeditions like the present, was their having failed in their first scheme of finding a new passage to the East Indies, than that with which the Spaniards and Portuguese were acquainted, which they had often and unsuccessfully endeavoured to explore by the north-east, with great hazard and expence. Their first voyages to the East Indies proving more fortunate even than they themselves had expected, they were tempted to proceed farther, and to distress their enemies likewise in the South Sea, which hitherto had only been done by the English.

The distressed states of Holland, however, were not hitherto so powerful at sea as to attempt acting offensively against the king of Spain on that element; but contented themselves with giving power and authority to any of their subjects who were inclined to venture upon expeditions of this nature, at their own risk and expence, so as at the same time to join their own private advantage with the public good, by fitting out squadrons for these distant and hazardous voyages. This policy, though arising in some measure from necessity, was conducted with such wisdom and address, that the king of Spain soon found himself more distressed by the armaments of the Dutch merchants, than by all the forces of the United States. This is a plain proof; that the surest way to render any government powerful, is to interest the people in general in its support: For this raises such spirit among them, and is followed by such unexpected consequences, as no art or force can withstand.

In the beginning of the year 1598, some eminent merchants in the united provinces, among whom were Peter van Bueren, Hugo Gerritz, and John Bennick, formed a design of sending some stout ships through the Straits of Magellan into the South Sea, to cruise against the Spaniards; to which design they were chiefly instigated by the reports of many English seamen, who had served in these parts, under Drake, Candish, and Hawkins, and other experienced officers. The purpose of the present expedition, was to cruise upon the coasts belonging to the Spaniards, and to force the enemy of peace to bear the expences of those wars in which he obliged other people unwillingly to engage. They also proposed by it to gain nautical experience, if it should be found practicable to continue the voyage by the Philippines, and so round by the Cape of Good Hope, circumnavigating the globe.

As the success of this important enterprise greatly depended upon the choice of a _general_, for so in those days the Dutch, and most other nations, denominated the commander in chief, whether by sea or land, the adventurers took great care to provide themselves with a person of established character, both in regard to conduct and courage. The person chosen on this occasion was Oliver van Noort, a native of Utrecht, in the flower of his age, and who had a strong passion to acquire glory. To him they communicated their scheme, which he readily embraced; and their terms being speedily adjusted, they proceeded to fit out two stout vessels one named the Maurice, and the other the Henry Frederick, together with two yachts, railed the Concord and the Hope, the whole being manned by 248 persons of all ranks and conditions.

Of this small fleet, Oliver van Noort was appointed admiral, and sailed in the Maurice; James Claas van Ulpenda was captain of the Henry Frederick, with the title of vice-admiral, Captain Peter van Lint commanded the Concord, and John Huidecoope was captain of the Hope. These were all men of experience in sea affairs, and capable of maintaining their authority on all occasions, and were all interested in the success of the voyage, by means of shares in the outfit; a proper precaution then, and ever since usual among the Dutch in all such cases, to prevent their expeditions from suffering by private views, or want of hearty concurrence in their officers: which, among other nations, is often the cause of failure, and for which this method is, perhaps, the only cure.

All things being in readiness, and crews provided for all the vessels, the proprietors presented a petition to the Board of Admiralty of Rotterdam, upon which all who were concerned were summoned to compeer: and, on the 28th June, 1598, the rules and regulations for the government of all concerned in this expedition, having been previously drawn up by the company of adventurers, revised by the admiralty and approved of by the Stadtholder, Prince Maurice, were publicly read over to them, and every man sworn to obey them. These sailing orders are called Artykelbreefs by the Dutch, and are never suffered to be put in force, till they have received this kind of sanction from the state, when they become the law of the voyage, to which all concerned are subject, and must undergo the penalties contained in them, for breach of any of the articles. This circumstance is worthy of remark and imitation by other nations, and is a strong proof of the care paid by that republic to the commercial welfare of its citizens.


_Narrative of the Voyage_.

On the 13th of September, 1598, the Maurice and Concord sailed from the port of Gocree; and, being joined by the Henry Frederick and Hope, from Amsterdam, the whole fleet proceeded for Plymouth, where their English pilot, Mr Mellish, who had been the companion of Sir Thomas Candish in his navigations, was to take in his apparel and other necessaries. They sailed from Plymouth on the 21th September, the wind then blowing a fresh gale at N.E. Next morning, being out of the channel, they perceived that the boat belonging to the vice-admiral was missing, in which were six men, which gave them considerable uneasiness, insomuch that they had some intention of returning to Plymouth in search of them. They met, however, with an English privateer, which soon made them alter their intentions; by assuring them that their men had run away with the boat, and could not be recovered, on which they resolved to proceed on their voyage. At this time considerable jealousies sprung up, respecting the capacity and conduct of the vice-admiral, which were soon increased by his losing his other boat and one man, and which could not be recovered by all their care. This carelessness occasioned much murmuring and discontent among the seamen, which the vice-admiral daily increased by his haughty behaviour, and by his contempt for advice, which no man needed more than he.

The 4th October, they met a small fleet of English, Dutch, and French ships, returning from Barbary, from whom they had accounts of a terrible pestilence then raging in that country, which had swept away 250,000 persons in a very short space of time. The 6th, they came between the islands of Teneriff and Grand Canary, and on the 3d November, they came in sight of the coast of Guinea. December 4th they were off Cape Palma, in lat. 3 deg. 30′ N.[68] and on the 10th came in sight of Princes Island, in lat. 1 deg. N.[69] Sending their boats ashore to this island, carrying a flag of truce, they were met on the shore by a negro, bearing a similar flag, from whom they demanded a supply of provisions, which was accorded on fair and friendly terms; but, while settling the terms, they were suddenly surprised by a party from an ambush, which cut off several of them, one of whom was Mr Mellish, their English pilot. The Portuguese pursued them to their boats, which they briskly attached, killing the admiral’s brother, and had nearly captured the whole party. In revenge of this outrage, it was determined in a council of war to attack the castle; but finding this enterprize too hazardous, they contented themselves with burning all the sugar ingenios. After this exploit, having provided themselves with fresh water, they set sail on the 17th.

[Footnote 68: Cape Formosa is probably here meant, which is in 4 deg. 18′ N.–E.]

[Footnote 69: The latitude of Princes Island is 1 deg. 40′ N.–E.]

They reached Cape Goncalves on the 25th, where the wind usually blows from the land all night, and from the sea all day. Here they found two Dutch ships, which informed them of the loss of Captain Sleerhagen and most of his company at Princes Island; as also of the voyage of Peter Verhagen, who had entered the river of Congo, and had afterwards buried thirty-eight of his company at Cape Goncalves, whence he had gone some time before their arrival to Annobon.

January 1st, 1589, they passed the island of Annobon, in lat. 2 deg. S. [1 deg. 30′ S.] and on the 28th of that month had the sun in their zenith. The 5th of March they reached Cape St Thomas on the coast of Brazil, in lat. 22 deg. S. [21 deg. 15′]. The 6th they passed Cape Fair, and came that evening to Cape Frio, and on the 9th reached Rio de Janeiro. After some loss of time, and having several of their men cut off by their grand enemy the Portuguese, they went to the island of St Sebastian, in lat. 24 deg. S. where the comforts of a good harbour, plenty of fresh water, and an abundant supply of wood gave them much satisfaction; but no fruits were to be had at that season.

They encountered a heavy storm on the 14th of March, by which the vice-admiral and the Hope were separated from the admiral, but they met again on the 17th. The scurvy now began to make rapid progress among the company; which, together with the approach of the antarctic winter, determined them to put in at St Helena. Missing that island, they next endeavoured to fall in with the island of Ascension, or some other island where they might procure refreshments; but their hard fortune brought them to a very barren and desolate island in the lat. of 20 deg. 30′ S.[70] where they could procure no refreshments, except a few fowls called _Malle Mewen,_[71] which they knocked down with clubs.

[Footnote 70: The island of Trinidad is nearly in the indicated latitude.–E.]

[Footnote 71: These were probably young unfledged sea-gulls, called in provincial English _Malls, Maws_, and _Mews,_ not unlike the Dutch names in the text; where perhaps we ought to read Malle _or_ Mewen.–E.]

Soon leaving this inhospitable place, they put to sea again, and on the 1st of June, while endeavouring to reach Ascension, they got back to the coast of Brazil. Not being suffered to land any where on the continent, they sailed to the isle of Santa Clara, an island of about a mile round, and as much from the continent, in lat. 21 deg. 15′ S. This island afforded little else beyond herbs, but they found here a sour fruit resembling plums, which cured all their sick men in fifteen days. They sailed from thence for Port Desire, in lat 47 deg. 40′ S. on the 16th June, and reached that place on the 20th September, after enduring much bad weather. They procured abundance of penguins and fish, at an island three miles south from Port Desire; killing to the number of 50,000 penguins, which are nearly as large as geese, and procured a vast quantity of their eggs, by which their people were greatly refreshed, and the sick restored. Going up the river on the 5th October, and landing in the country, they found animals resembling stags, together with buffaloes, and ostriches in great numbers, and even found some of the nests of these birds, in which were as far as nineteen eggs. The 20th, the admiral went ashore to view the country, leaving orders with those who were left in charge of the boats, not to leave them a moment on any account: But they, having a mind also to see the country, ventured upon a short ramble, when they fell into an ambush of the savages, who slew three of their number, and wounded the fourth. These savages were very tall portly men, painted, and armed with short bows, and arrows headed with stone.

Leaving Port Desire on the 29th September, they reached Cape Virgin at the entrance into the Straits of Magellan on the 24th November. The land here is low and plain, and from the whiteness of the coast somewhat resembles the chalk cliffs of England in the channel. In many attempts to enter the straits, they were beaten back by tempests of wind, accompanied by rain, hail, and snow. They lost their anchors, and broke their cables, and sickness, together with contention, which is worse than any disease, were added to their other calamities. All these so retarded the progress of the voyage, that it was near fifteen months after leaving Holland before they could make their way into the straits. They observed the land to trend from Cape Virgin to the S.W. and the mouth of the straits to be fourteen miles distant from that cape, and half a mile wide.[72] On the 25th November, they saw some men on two islands near Cape Nassau, who shook their weapons at the Hollanders, as in defiance. The Dutch landed, and pursued the savages into a cave, which they bravely defended to the last man, and were all slain on the spot. Going now into this dark cave, the Dutch found the women and children of the slain savages, when the mothers, expecting present death to themselves and their infants, covered their little ones with their own bodies, as if determined to receive the first stab. But the Dutch did them no other injury, except taking away four boys and two girls, whom they carried on ship board.

[Footnote 72: These must necessarily be Dutch miles, 15 to the degree, each equal to nearly 4.66 English miles. By the mouth of the straits in the text, must be understood what is called the Narrows of the Hope.–E.]

From one of these boys, after he had learnt the Dutch language, they had the following intelligence. The larger of the two islands was named _Castemme_ by the natives, and the tribe inhabiting it _Enoo_. The smaller island was called _Talche_. Both were frequented by great numbers of penguins, the flesh of which served the natives as food, and their skins for cloathing. Their only habitations were caves. The neighbouring continent abounded in ostriches, which they also used as food. The natives of these dreary regions were distinguished into tribes, each having their respective residences. The _Kemenetes_ dwelt in _Kaesay;_ the _Kennekin_ in _Karamay_; the _Karaiks_ in _Morina_: All these are of the ordinary size, but broad-breasted, and painted all over; the men tying up their pudenda in a string, and the women covering their parts of shame with the skins of a penguin; the men wearing their hair long, while that of the women was kept very short; and both sexes going naked, except cloaks made of penguin skins, reaching only to the waist. There was also a fourth tribe, called _Tirimenen_, dwelling in _Coin_, who were of a gigantic stature, being ten or twelve feet high,[73] and continually at war with the other tribes.

[Footnote 73: This absurdity might be pardoned in the ignorant savage boy, who knew neither numerals nor measures; but in the grave reporters it is truly ridiculous, and yet the lie has been renewed almost down to the close of the eighteenth century.–E.]

The 28th November, the navigators went over to the continent, or north side of the straits, seeing some whales at a distance, and observed a pleasant river, about which were some beautiful trees with many parrots. Owing to this fine prospect, they called the mouth of this river _Summer Bay_. The 29th they made sail for _Port Famine_, where the land trends so far to the south, that the main land of Patagonia and the islands of Terra del Fuego seemed, when seen afar off, to join together. They found here no remains of the late city of King Philip, except a heap of stones. The straits are here four miles wide, having hills of vast height on both sides, perpetually covered with snow. At Port Famine they cut down wood to build a boat, and found the bark of the trees to be hot and biting like pepper.[74] Not finding good water at this place, and indeed doubting if it were Port Famine, they proceeded onwards, and found a good river two miles farther west on the 1st December. Next day they doubled Cape Froward, with some danger, on account of bad anchorage and contrary winds.

[Footnote 74: The Wintera aromatica, the bark of which is called Winter’s bark, said to have been first discovered by Captain Winter in 1567, on the coast of Terra Magellanica. The sailors employed this bark as a spice, and found it salutary in the scurvy.–E.]

Passing four miles beyond this cape, they anchored in a large bay, where was a plant resembling sneezwort, which they found serviceable in the scurvy; also another plant, which rendered those who eat of it distracted for a time. They here fell in with two ships belonging to the fleet under Verhagen, which had been driven back out of the South Sea, one of which was commanded by Sebaldt de Weert, who told them he had been five months in the straits, and had only thirty-eight remaining out of 110 men, and not being able to bear up against the storms in the South Sea, had been forced to put in here, while the rest of the fleet under Verhagen held on their course.[75] These ships wished to have joined the expedition under Van Noort, but were forced to remain in the straits for want of provisions, which the others could not spare. They afterwards got back to Holland on the 13th July, 1600.

[Footnote 75: The voyage of Verhagen, or so much of it rather as relates to the adventures of Sebaldt de Weert, follows the present voyage of Van Noort in the Collection by Harris, vol. I. pp. 37-44; and is, therefore, retained in the same situation on the present occasion.–E.]

Van Noort and his ships left this bay on the 2d January, 1600, directing their course for Maurice bay, which they found to extend far to the eastwards, and to receive several rivers, the mouths of which were filled with vast quantities of ice, which seemed never to melt. It was now near midsummer of this southern clime, and the ice was so thick that they could not find its bottom with a line of ten fathoms. The land here seemed a congeries of broken islands, yet appearing like one continued mass, owing to the height of the mountains. They were here much distressed by hunger and continual rains, and two of their men were slain by the savages, while gathering muscles, which formed their chief subsistence. After weathering many storms in _Meniste_ bay, and having several encounters with the savages, they set sail on the 17th, and were driven into Penguin bay, or Goose bay, three miles from Meniste bay, and receiving its name from the vast multitude of penguins found there. At this place, James Claas van Ulpenda, the vice-admiral, was arraigned before a council of war, for various breaches of the articles sworn to before proceeding on the voyage. Having a fair trial, and sufficient time allowed him for his defence, he was condemned to be turned ashore in the straits, with a small supply of provisions, and allowed to shift for himself among the wild beasts and more savage inhabitants, which sentence was accordingly executed, so that he doubtless soon fell a prey either to hunger or the natives, who are implacable enemies to all strangers.

They entered another bay on the 1st February, which they called Popish bay, probably owing to some cross erected on its shore, and in which they were exposed to much danger. On the 27th, they saw at a distance a huge mountain of ice in Penguin bay. The 28th they passed Cape Deseado, or Desire, into the South Sea, bidding adieu to the many dismal prospects of the Straits of Magellan. Their company, originally 248 men, was now reduced to 147, but was soon still farther lessened by losing company of the Henry Frederick, which never rejoined. Waiting for that ship in vain till the 12th March, they sailed to the island of Mocha on the coast of Chili, in lat. 38 deg. 22′ S. and six miles [twenty English] from the continent. This island is remarkable by a high mountain in the middle, which is cloven at the top, and whence a water-course descends into the vale land at its foot. They here bartered knives and hatchets with the natives for sheep, poultry, maize, _bartulas_,[76] and other fruits. The town consisted of about fifty straw huts, where the Dutch were regaled with a sour kind of drink, called _cici_, made of maiz steeped in water, which is the favourite drink of the Chilese at their feasts. Polygamy is much practised among these people, who buy as many wives as they can afford to maintain; so that a man who has many daughters, especially if they be handsome, is accounted rich. If one man kill another, he is judged by the relations of the deceased, as they have no laws or magistrates among them, so that the murderer may sometimes buy off his punishment by giving a drinking-bout of _cici_. Their cloathing is manufactured from the wool of a large kind of sheep, which animal they also employ to carry burdens. They would not sell any of these, but parted freely with another kind, not very different.

[Footnote 76: This probably means battatas or potatoes, a native production of Chili.–E.]

From thence they went to the island of St Mary, in lat. 37 deg. S. eighteen miles [ninety-five English] from Mocha, where they fell in with a Spanish ship carrying lard and meal from Conception to Valdivia in Araucania, which they chased and took. The pilot of this ship informed them that they would not be able to return to the island of St Mary, owing to the south wind, and that two Spanish ships of war were waiting for them at Arica. Upon this information they resolved to sail for Valparaiso, and by that means quite lost all chance of being rejoined by the Henry Frederick, which might otherwise have got up with them. Besides, they concluded that the missing ship had failed to find St Mary’s isle, owing to its being wrong placed in the map of Plancius, in lat. 38 deg. S. which error they themselves had fallen into, had they not been set right by the observations of Mr Mellish. They were farther confirmed in the resolution of not returning to the island of St Mary, by hearing of the misfortune which had there befallen Simon de Cordes, who was there butchered with twenty-three of his men, after being invited on shore in a friendly manner by the Indians, owing to the treachery of the Spaniards endeavouring to get possession of his two ships, and sending intelligence to Lima and all about the country of the arrival of the Dutch in these seas, with a list of their ships, and the names of all their commanders. For these reasons they proceeded to Valparaiso, where they took two ships and killed some Indians, but all the Spaniards escaped on shore. Valparaiso is in lat. 35 deg. 5′ S. And about eighteen miles inland, [100 English miles] is the town of St Jago, abounding in red wine and sheep. They kill these animals merely for the sake of their tallow, with which alone they load many vessels. Here they received letters from the captain of the Flying Hart, one of the squadron under Verhagen, who had been treacherously captured by the Spaniards; owing, as he alleged, to the wrong placement of the island of St Mary in the map, by which he had been misled.

At Valparaiso they intercepted some letters giving an account of the wars in Chili between the Spaniards and the Indians, who it seems were in rebellion, had sacked the town of Valdivia, putting vast numbers of Spaniards to the sword, and carrying off many captives. They burnt the houses and churches, knocking off the heads of the popish images, crying, “Down go the gods of the Spaniards.” They then crammed the mouths of these images with gold, bidding them satisfy themselves with that, for the sake of which their votaries had committed so many barbarous massacres of their nation. They afterwards laid close siege to the city of Imperial, and had almost starved the Spanish garrison into a surrender. The valiant Indians who undertook this enterprise were about 5000, of whom 5000 were cavalry, 100 were armed with muskets, and 70 had corslets, all of which were plunder they had taken from the Spaniards. They so mortally hate the Spaniards, that they rip up the breasts of all they overcome, tearing out their hearts with their teeth, and they delight to drink their favourite liquor from a cup made of a Spaniard’s skull.

These Indians [the Araucans] are for the most part very stout, and skilful soldiers, and commit the management of all their military affairs to the direction of one supreme general, whose orders are implicitly obeyed. Their method of election to this high dignity is very singular; for he who carries a certain log of wood on his shoulders the longest, and with the smallest appearance of weariness, is saluted general by the army. In this trial several carried the log four, five, and six hours; but at length one carried it twenty-four hours on end, and this person was now general. The whole of Chili, from St Jago to Valdivia, is one of the most fertile and most delightful countries in the world. It abounds in all kinds of cattle and fruit, has many rich gold mines, and its climate is so sweet and salubrious as to exclude the use of medicine, being health and life in itself.

They entered the bay of Guasco[77] on the 1st April, where they remained till the 7th. The 11th they came into a large bay, named _Moro Gorch_, in lat. 18 deg. 30′ S. ten miles from which is _Moro Moreno_, from which the shore runs to Arica, and all this coast, up to the hill of St Francis, is very much subject to south winds, though the adjoining seas have the winds variable and uncertain. On the 20th the whole air was darkened by an _Arenal_ which is a cloud of dust, and so thick that one cannot see a stone’s throw. These are raised by the wind from the adjoining shore, and are very common in these parts. The 25th they were within view of the famous city of Lima in Peru. At this time they learnt the value of the treasure of which the Spaniards had deprived them, in the ships they took on the coast of Chili. Nicholas Peterson, the captain of one of these prizes, acquainted Van Noort that he had been informed by a negro of a great quantity of gold having been on board the ship, as he believed to the amount of three tons, having helped to carry a great part of it on board. On this information the admiral closely examined the Spanish pilot, who at first denied all knowledge of any gold; but another negro having corroborated the information, with some farther circumstances, the pilot at last owned that they had on board fifty-two chests, each containing four arobas of gold, and besides these 500 bars of the same metal, weighing from eight to ten and twelve pounds each; all of which, together with what private stock belonged to any of the company, the captain had ordered to be thrown overboard in the night, when first chased, amounting in the whole to about 10,200 pounds weight of gold; and, from its fineness, worth about two million pieces of eight, or Spanish silver dollars. Upon this the admiral ordered the ship and all the prisoners to be searched, but there was only found a single pound of gold dust, tied up in a rag, in the breeches pocket of the Spanish pilot. The prisoners owned that all this gold was brought from the island of St Mary, from mines discovered only three years before; and that there were not more than three or four Spaniards on that island, and about 200 Indians, only armed with bows and arrows.

[Footnote 77: Perhaps Huasco in lat. 28 deg. 27′ S. or it may possibly have been Guacho, in 25 deg. 50′ S.–E.]

The 5th September they came in sight of the Ladrones, and came on the 16th to Guam, one of these an island of about twenty Dutch miles in extent, and yielding fish, cocoa-nuts, bananas, and sugar canes, all of which the natives brought to the ships in a great number of canoes. Sometimes they met 200 of these canoes at one time, with four or five men in each, bawling out _hiero, hiero,_ meaning iron; and often in their eagerness they run their canoes against the ships, overturning them and losing all their commodities. These islanders were a sly subtle people, and honest with good looking after; for otherwise, they would sell a basket of cocoa-nut shells covered over with a small quantity of rice, as if full of rice. They would also snatch a sword from its scabbard, and plunge instantly into the water, where they dived like so many ducks; and the women were as roguish as the men, stealing as impudently, and diving as expertly to carry off their prizes.

The 17th of September they sailed for the Philippines; and on the 20th they met with ice, though then only in the latitude of 3 deg. N.[78] On the 16th October they came to Bayla bay, in a very fertile land, at which place they procured abundance of all kinds of necessaries for their ships, by pretending to be Spaniards. The Spaniards, who are lords here, make the Indians pay an annual capitation tax, to the value of ten single rials for every one above twenty years of age. The natives of these islands are mostly naked, having their skins marked with figures so deeply impressed, [_tatooed_] that they never wear out. Being discovered to be Dutch, but not till they had gained their ends, they sailed for the Straits of Manilla, all the coasts near which appeared waste, barren, and rocky. Here a sudden squall of wind from the S.E. carried away some of their masts and sails, being more furious than any they had hitherto experienced during the voyage. The 23d some of the people went ashore, where they eat palmitoes and drank water so greedily, that they were afterwards seized with the dysentery. The 24th they entered the straits, sailing past an island in the middle, and came in the evening past the island of Capul, seven miles within the straits, near which they found whirlpools, where the sea was of an unfathomable depth, so far as they could discover.

[Footnote 78: This surely is an error for 18 deg., Guam being in lat. 18 deg. 20′ N. yet even here, the fact of meeting ice so far within the tropic is sufficiently singular.–E.]

They now crowded sail for Manilla, which is eighty miles from Capul, but wanted both a good wind to carry them, and good maps and a skilful pilot to direct them to that place. The 7th November they took a junk from China, laden with provisions for Manilla. The master of this junk told them there were then at Manilla two great ships, that come every year from New Spain, and a Dutch ship also which had been brought from Malacca. He said also that the town of Manilla was walled round, having two forts for protecting the ships, as there was a vast trade to that place from China, not less than 400 junks coming every year from Chincheo, with silk and other valuable commodities, between Easter and December. There were also two ships expected shortly from Japan, laden with iron and other metals, and provisions. The 15th they took two barks, laden with hens and hogs, being part of the tribute to the Spaniards, but became food to the Dutch, who gave them a few bolts of linen in return.

They passed the islands of _Bankingle_ and _Mindoro_, right over against which is the island of _Lou-bou_. at the distance of two miles, and between both is another small island, beside which there is a safe passage for ships. The island of Luzon is larger than England and Scotland,[79] and has a numerous cluster of small islands round about it; yet is more beholden to trade for its riches, than to the goodness of its soil. While at anchor, in 15 deg. N. waiting for the ships said to be coming from Japan, Van Noort took one of them on the 1st December, being a vessel of fifty tons, which had been twenty-five days on her voyage. Her form was very strange, her forepart being like a chimney, and her furniture corresponding to her shape; as her sails were made of reeds, her anchors of wood, and her cables of straw. Her Japanese mariners had their heads all close shaven, except one tuft left long behind, which is the general custom of that country. The 9th, they took two barks, one laden with cocoa wine and arrack, and the other with hens and rice.

[Footnote 79: Luzon is certainly a large island, but by no means such as represented in the text.–E.]

The 14th of December they met the two Spanish ships returning from Manilla to New Spain, on which a very sharp engagement took place. Overpowered by numbers, the Dutch in the ship of Van Noort were reduced to the utmost extremity, being at one time boarded by the Spaniards, and almost utterly conquered; when Van Noort, seeing all was lost without a most resolute exertion, threatened to blow up his ship, unless his men fought better and beat off the Spaniards. On this, the Dutch crew fought with such desperate resolution, that they cleared their own ship, and boarded the Spanish admiral, which at last they sunk outright. In this action the Dutch admiral had five men slain, and twenty-six wounded, the whole company being now reduced to thirty-five men. But several hundreds of the Spaniards perished, partly slain in the fight, and partly drowned or knocked in the head after the battle was over. But the Dutch lost their pinnace, which was taken by the Spanish vice-admiral; and this was not wonderful, considering that she had only twenty-five men to fight against five hundred Spaniards and Indians.

After this action, Van Noort made sail for the island of Borneo, the chief town of which island is in lat. 5 deg. N. while Manilla, the capital of Lucon, is in lat. 15 deg. N. On the way to Borneo, they passed the island of _Bolutam_, [Palawan or Paragua,] which is 180 miles in length from N.E. to S.W. They came to Borneo on the 26th December, putting into a great bay, three miles in compass, where there was good anchorage, and abundance of fish in a neighbouring river, and the fishermen always ready to barter their fish for linen. Van Noort sent a message to the king, desiring leave to trade; but suspecting them to be Spaniards, he would come to no terms till his officers had examined them with the utmost attention, after which they had trade for pepper with a people called _Pattannees_, of Chinese origin. Both these and the native Borneans were fond of Chinese cotton cloth, but the linen from Holland was a mere drug, and quite unsaleable. In the mean time, the Borneans laid a plot to surprise the ship; for which purpose, on the 1st January, 1601, they came with at least an hundred praws full of men, pretending to have brought presents from the king, and would have come on board the ship; but the Dutch, suspecting their treachery, commanded them to keep at a distance from the ship, or they would be obliged to make them do so with their shot, on which the Borneans desisted.

Borneo is the largest of all the islands in the East-Indies; and its capital, of the same name, contains about 300 houses, but is built in a dirty marshy soil, or rather in the water, so that the inhabitants have to go from one house to another in their praws. The inhabitants all go constantly armed, from the noble down to the fisherman; and even the women are of so martial a disposition, that on receiving an affront, they instantly revenge it, either with a dagger or a javelin. This a Dutchman had nearly proved to his cost; for having offended one of these viragoes, she set upon him with a javelin, and had surely dispatched him, if she had not been prevented by main force. They are Mahometans, and so very superstitious, that they would rather die than eat of swine’s flesh, nor will they keep any of these animals about them. The better sort have a cotton garment from the waist down, with a turban on their heads; but the common people go entirely naked. They continually chew betel and areka, which is also a common practice in many other parts of India.

On the 4th January, four Borneans came to the ship, intending to have cut the cables, that she might drive on shore and become their prey; but the Dutch fortunately discovered them, and drove them away with shot, when they left their praw behind, which the Dutch took, to serve instead of their own boat, which they had lost at the Philippines. Seeing no hope of any profitable trade at this place, they now left it, intending for Bantam, not much pleased either with the country or the people. The day after leaving Borneo, they met a junk from Japan bound for Manilla, which informed them of a great Dutch ship being forced by tempests into Japan, all her company having died by sickness and famine except fourteen. They came first to _Bongo_, in lat. 34 deg. 40′ N. [Bungo in about lat. 33 deg. N.] whence the emperor of Japan ordered them to remove to _Atonza_, in lat. 36 deg. 30′ N. [Osaka in lat. 34′ 55′ N.] They alleged that they were allowed to trade, and to build a new ship, with liberty to dispose of themselves afterwards as they pleased. From this account, it was not doubted that this was the admiral of Verhagen’s fleet;[80] and dismissing the Japanese vessel, they passed the line a third time, and proceeded for Bantam, in no little fear and danger, for want of an experienced pilot and good charts.

[Footnote 80: This was the ship in which William Adams sailed as pilot, as related on a former occasion, being the Hope, commanded by James Mahu, one of five ships from Rotterdam. We have already had occasion to meet with two of these in the Straits of Magellan.–E.]

The 16th they took a junk belonging to Jor or Johor, in which they procured an experienced and skilful pilot, who came in good time to save them from shipwreck, which they had otherwise most probably suffered in these dangerous seas, so thick set with shoals and islands on every side, with which they were entirely unacquainted; and besides, they were now reduced to one anchor, and one solitary cable almost worn out. The 28th they came to Jortan in the island of Java, where they had news of several Dutch ships being at Bantam. The city of Jortan consists of about 1000 houses built of timber, and its king commands over a considerable portion of that end of the island, and had lately conquered _Balambuan_, a small island S.E. from Jortan. The people in these parts are said to be Mahometans; yet, as pagods are still in use, they seem to retain some mixture of the old Indian superstitions, or at least some remnant of paganism is tolerated among the common people. Their chief priest at this time was an old man, said to be an hundred and twenty years of age, who had a large household of wives, who fed the old man with their milk.

Sailing past Jortan, they saw a large Portuguese ship of 600 tons, sticking fast among the shoals. She was bound for Amboina, on purpose to have engrossed all the trade of that place; at least such was the report of the Portuguese; but Van Noort strongly suspected she had been sent out to cruize for the purpose of intercepting him. He was, therefore, the less concerned for her misfortune, and the less careful in assisting her crew, originally of between six and seven hundred men, many of whom were still on board, and in great danger of perishing. The 5th of February, they passed the straits between _Balambuan_ and _Bally_, leaving Java on the N.E.[81] On the 11th, finding themselves in lat 13 deg. S. they directed their course for the Cape of Good Hope. On the 18th, having the sun vertical at noon, their latitude was 11 deg. 20′ S. and here a calm began which lasted eleven days. The 11th March they were in lat. 24 deg. 45′ S. and in 28 deg. 10′ S. on the 24th.

[Footnote 81: This is an obvious error, as the Straits of Bally are at the _east_ end of Java, which they must consequently have left on the N.W. of their course.–E.]

The 19th of April, having been considerably retarded by cross winds and calms, they were under the necessity to lessen their allowance of water. At night of the 24th they observed light, as of a fire, on land, about four miles to the N.W. although they reckoned themselves 200 miles from the cape, and were not aware of having approached any other land. The 25th, being calm weather, they were enabled to mend their sails, and at night another fire was observed; and in the morning of the 26th they saw land. The 3d May they saw land between the east and north, about six miles off, resembling the end of an island, by which they reckoned themselves near the cape, and now shaped their course for the island of St Helena, where they arrived on the 26th. They here refreshed themselves with fish and some flesh, and laid in a supply of wood and water; but found goats and fowls hard to be got, and could not procure any oranges.

Leaving St Helena on the 30th May, they crossed the line for the fourth time on the 14th of June; and on the 16th met a fleet of six Dutch ships, under Admiral Heemskirk, bound for India. These had fought with thirteen Spanish ships near the island of Sal, and had lost their pinnace and vice-admiral; the former having been taken by the Spaniards, and the latter having parted company. The 8th July they were in lat. 27 deg. N. when they fell in with considerable quantities of the sea-weed called _saragossa_. By the 13th they were in lat. 32 deg. 30′ N. after which they had a calm of fifteen days, the sea being all covered with weeds. The 22d they had to go upon short allowance of bread, and that too much worm eaten. August 1st, being in lat. 40 deg. N. they passed the island of Flores, forty-five miles to the westward, by their estimation. They met three ships belonging to Embden on the 18th, from whom they procured bread and flesh, in exchange for rice and pepper; and from whom they learnt that they were so near England, that they might expect to see the Lizard next day. About noon of the 26th August, 1601, they arrived in safety before the city of Rotterdam, where they were received with the utmost joy, on their return from so long and perilous a voyage, which had occupied three years, bating eighteen days.


_Voyage of Sebald de Weert, to the South Sea and Straits of Magellan, in 1598_.[82]

“Though not a circumnavigation, it seems necessary to give an account of this voyage of Sebald de Weert, by way of supplement to that of Oliver de Noort; because De Weert was fitted out with the intention of sailing by the Straits of Magellan to India, and because it is difficult to find so good a description of these famous straits as he has given. De Weert was one of the best seamen in Holland, and lived to distinguish himself afterwards by many more successful enterprises; and I persuade myself the reader will be pleased to see the firmness of an able commander, struggling against a long series of misfortunes. This has always been esteemed one of the best written, and most curious of all the Dutch voyages, and is therefore given at large.”[83]–_Harris_.

[Footnote 82: Harris, I. 36.]

[Footnote 83: So far Harris; but on the present occasion several trivial and minute circumstances are omitted or abbreviated.–E.]

Sec. 1. _Incidents of the Voyage from Holland to the Straits of Magellan_.

The fleet fitted out for this expedition consisted of the Hope of 500 tons, with 130 men, commanded by James Mahu, admiral; the Love or Charity of 300 tons, and 110 men, commanded by Simon de Cordes, vice-admiral; the Faith of 320 tons, and 100 men, of which Gerard van Beuningen was captain; the Fidelity of 220 tons, with 86 men, captain Jurian Buckholt; and a yacht of 150 tons and 112 men, called the Merry Messenger, captain Sebald de Weert. These five ships were well provided with all manner of provisions, cannon, small arms, ammunition, money, merchandise, and stores necessary for a long voyage; and the pilot on whose knowledge and experience they chiefly depended, was an Englishman named William Adams,[84] besides whom there were three other Englishmen on board the admiral.

[Footnote 84: Of the adventures of this person in Japan, we have formerly had occasion to give an account in vol. VIII. p. 64, of this Collection, preceded by a brief abstract of the voyages of Schald de Weert.–E.]

The fleet sailed from the road of Goeree in the Maese on the 27th June, 1598; but, owing to contrary winds, had to remain at anchor in the Downs on the coast of England, till the 15th July. The wind being then fair, they set sail on that day, and on the 19th were on the coast of Barbary. Towards the end of August, they arrived in the harbour of St Jago, one of the Cape de Verd islands, where they remained till the 10th September, although the climate was very unhealthy, and the pilots, particularly Mr Adams, remonstrated against continuing there; by which the officers were so much offended, that they resolved never more to call the pilots to council, which seems to have been the source of all their subsequent misfortunes, and of that restless spirit of mutiny and discontent, which possessed the seamen in this fleet.

In the afternoon of the 11th September, they were off the desert island of Brava, and the bottom being rocky, so that they could not anchor, they stood off and on all night, and coasting along next morning they found some fresh water, which was hard to be got, as the ships could not come to anchor, on account of a bad bottom. The boats, however, of Captains Beuniugen and Buckholt, went ashore with empty casks, which they filled and brought on board, though then night and the ships under way. Captain de Ween went ashore in a small sandy bay, and looking about for fresh water, he saw some Portuguese and negroes coming towards him, who told him the French and English ships used to get fresh water near that place, but remained always under sail. They said also, that no refreshments were to be had at this island, but these might be had in the island of Fuego. After the departure of the islanders, de Weert discovered four or five ruinous small huts, the door of one being walled up, which he found full of maize. On this discovery, he remained there with three men, lest the Portuguese might carry off the maize in the night, and sent some others in the boat to give notice to the admiral of this discovery. Fortunately a small vessel belonging to the bishop of St Thomas, taken by the Dutch at Praya, arrived in the bay, to which de Weert removed all the maize. He also took two female sea tortoises, in which were above 600 eggs, of which they made many good meals. The Portuguese and negroes, finding the Dutch busied in carrying away their maize, came down the mountain, making a great noise; but de Weert, having two fusils, fired at them and made them retire.

On the return of de Weert, he found the admiral very sick, and a council assembled in the Hope. He in the first place advised them to remain no longer at the Cape Verd islands, and then resigned his command to the vice-admiral, de Cordes. On advising with the other captains, and learning the quantity of water in each ship, de Cordes gave orders that such as had most should give part to the others, and that the allowance of provisions and water should be diminished, and as fresh water was not to be expected for three or four months, they were directed to gather rain-water when that could be had. The greatest part of the men in the admiral’s ship being sick, two or three of them were removed into each of the other ships, in exchange for sound men. The fleet sailed from Brava on the 15th September, and on the 22d a signal was made from the admiral for the other captains. They found the admiral, James Mahu, beyond hope of recovery; and that night he and his supercargo, Daniel Restan, both died. He was of a mild and gentle disposition, honest, careful, diligent, and very kind to the seamen, and was much lamented by the whole fleet. Opening the letters of the directors of the expedition, which were directed to be opened in such a case, de Cordes was appointed admiral, and Benningen vice-admiral; Sebald de Weert being promoted to the command of the Faith, and Dirke Gernitsz China to that of the yacht. These alterations did not please the seamen, who were attached to their former commanders.

By the 4th October, the scurvy raged much among the seamen, especially in the Hope, on which de Cordes ordered a day of prayer to be observed in the fleet, to implore the mercy of God and a happy voyage. They were then in the lat. of 1 deg. 45′ S. At length the scurvy increased so much in the Hope, that the admiral had not men enough to work his ship, and it was resolved to steer for some island where fresh provisions might be procured. They steered accordingly for Annobon, where they hoped to get fresh meat and oranges. Towards night, the admiral, who sailed in the van, fired a gun as a signal of seeing land, though all the pilots then thought the land at the distance of 100 leagues. They accordingly approached the land, and anchored on the coast of _Manicongo_, in lat. 3 deg. S.[85] They here lost company of the small ship belonging to St Thomas, in which were eleven sound men, and some thought she had deserted, while others thought she had run aground: But they afterwards found she had gone to Cape Lope Gonzalves, where the men quitted her, going aboard the ship of Baltazar Musheron, which was bound to America.

[Footnote 85: The latitude in the text falls near Point Palmas, on the coast of Yumba, in what is called the Kingdom of Congo. Mayumba bay, perhaps the Manicongo of the text, is in lat. 4 deg. 30′ S.]

After several ineffectual attempts to procure refreshments for their men on the coast of Africa and the island of Annobon, they put to sea on the 3d January, 1599, from that island, with the intention of sailing direct for the Straits of Magellan. The 22d they passed the shelves and rocks on the coast of Brazil, called the _Abrolhos_. The 9th March, one of the seamen in the vice-admiral’s ship was hanged, for repeatedly breaking open the cupboard belonging to the cook, and stealing bread. About this time, the sick beginning to recover, got such good appetites that their allowance was not sufficient. The 12th, being near the Rio Plata, the sea appeared as red as blood, and some of the water being drawn up was found full of small red worms, that leaped out of it like fleas.

Sec. 2. _The Fleet passes through the Straits of Magellan into the South Sea, and is forced to return_.

The 6th of April, the fleet got into the Straits of Magellan, and towards evening cast anchor under the smaller of the two Penguin isles, fourteen leagues within the mouth of the straits. They here saw vast numbers of those birds called _plongeons_ or divers, because they dive into the water to catch fish. They killed there ten or fourteen of them with sticks, and might have killed as many as would have served the whole fleet, but would not lose the opportunity of a fair wind. The 9th they proceeded through the straits; and next day the admiral sent fifty men on shore, to look for inhabitants or cattle, but after travelling three leagues along shore, they found nothing. They arrived in a fine bay on the 15th, twenty-one leagues from the mouth of the straits, called _Muscle bay_ by the English, because of the great quantities of muscles found there, and here they provided themselves abundantly with fresh water and wood. The 17th they sailed between two rocky shores, so close and so high that they hardly thought to have got through. The mountains on both sides were covered with snow. On the 18th, they cast anchor in a bay on the north side of the straits, in lat. 54 deg. S. called _Great bay_, having good anchorage on fine sand. In this bay there are three small islands, the least of which is farthest east.

In these parts, there grow great quantities of trees, resembling bay trees, but somewhat higher, the bark of which is very bitter, and has a hot taste like pepper.[86] They here found abundance of muscles, some of which were a span long, and when boiled, the fish of three of them weighed a pound. The wind being contrary, they lay here at anchor till the 23d of August,[87] without taking the sails from the yards, to be ready to sail on a change of wind. In the mean while they suffered much from cold, in so much that they lost above an hundred men, among whom was Captain Buckholt, who was succeeded by Baltazar de Cordes. Storms were so frequent and violent during this time, that the ships could not ride quietly at anchor, and the seamen were forced to be continually at work to keep them right. They were also forced to go often on shore, in rain, snow, and hail, to get in fresh water, wood, muscles, and such other food as they could find, by which they were greatly fatigued. The scarcity of victuals was so great, and the climate so severe, that they were almost starved with hunger and cold, and their appetites so insatiable, that they devoured roots or any thing else they could find, raw and uncooked. Most of the seamen had no watch-coats or other warm cloathing, to enable them to support the fatigue of watching and their daily labour, having made no provision of such things, as they believed themselves bound to warm climes. To remedy this evil, the general ordered cloth to be distributed among them.

[Footnote 86: In Harris these are erroneously called _Pimento_, but they must have been the _Wintera aromatica_. The Pimento, or _Myrtus Pimenta_, is a native of the warm regions of America and the West India islands, producing Pimento, All-spice, or Jamaica pepper.–E.]

[Footnote 87: This date, here anticipated, refers to the day when they afterwards set sail.–E.]

It was found that many of the seamen, when at their meals, were in use to sell their victuals to others at high prices, and afterwards satisfied their hunger with raw muscles and green herbs, which occasioned them to fall into dropsies and other lingering sickness, of which several died: For this reason, the captains and other officers were ordered to be present at all their meals, to see and oblige them to eat their allowances.

The 7th May the vice-admiral was sent, with two boats, to an island opposite Great bay, to catch sea-dogs.[88] He found there seven small boats or canoes, with savages on board, who were of a reddish colour with long hair, and, as well as he could observe, seemed _ten or eleven feet high_. On seeing the Dutch boats, the savages went on shore and threw many stones at the Dutch, so that they did not venture to land. The savages then took courage, and came towards them in their canoes; and coming within musket-shot, the vice-admiral made his men give them a general discharge, by which four or five of the savages were slain, and the rest so frightened that they escaped again on shore. They then pulled up some trees, which appeared afar off to be a span thick; but the vice-admiral chose to let them alone, and returned to the ships. The 26th of May, as some seamen were on shore, looking for muscles, roots, and herbs, and were dispersed, expecting no danger, a number of savages fell upon them suddenly, killed three of them, whom they tore in pieces, and wounded two, who were rescued by the admiral. All these savages were naked, except one, who had the skin of a sea-dog or seal about his shoulders. They were armed with wooden javelins, which they threw with great strength and dexterity. The points of these javelins were like cramp-irons, tied to the shafts with the guts of sea-dogs, and would run so deep into the flesh, that it was almost impossible to get them out.

[Footnote 88: Seals are probably here meant.–E.]

While the fleet lay in this bay, the admiral ordered his long-boat to be put upon the stocks, to be enlarged and altered into a pinnace, which was named the Postillion, and the command of her was given to the second pilot of the Hope. Having no provisions for making broth, Captain de Weert landed on the 27th July, in order to catch seals; and while he was ashore, so great a storm arose that he was obliged to remain two days and two nights, before he could get back to his ship, and caught nothing. After enduring great hardships in this _Green bay_,[89] and which the Dutch named the Bay of de Cordes, they set sail on the 23d of August, having the wind at N.E. but next day the weather became so calm, that they were obliged to put into a great bay on the south side of the straits. Here, to perpetuate the memory of so dangerous and extraordinary a voyage into these straits, to which no nation had hitherto sent so many or such large ships, the general instituted a new order of knighthood, of which he made his six principal officers knights. They bound themselves by oath, never to do or consent to any thing contrary to their honour or reputation, whatever might be the dangers or extremities to which they were exposed, even death itself; nor to do or suffer to be done any thing prejudicial to the interests of their country, or of the voyage in which they were now engaged. They also solemnly promised, freely to expose their lives against all the enemies of their nation, and to use their utmost endeavours to conquer those dominions whence the king of Spain procured so much gold and silver, by which he was enabled to carry on the war against their country. This ceremony was performed ashore on the eastern coast of the straits, in as orderly a manner as the place and occasion would permit, and the order was named of _The Lion set free_, in allusion to the Belgic lion, the cognizance of their country, which they professed to use all their endeavours to free from the Spanish yoke. After this ceremony, a tablet was erected on the top of a high pillar, on which the names of the new-made knights were inscribed, and the bay was named the _Bay of Knights_.

[Footnote 89: This seems the same formerly named Great bay.–E.]

Leaving this bay on the 28th of August, they put into another bay a league farther on, where they were again becalmed. The admiral at this time gave orders to Captain de Weert to go back in his boat to the Bay of Knights, to remove the tablet to a more convenient situation. When about to double the point of the bay on this errand, de Weert saw eighty savages sitting on the shore, having eight or nine canoes beside them; and, as soon as the savages saw the boat, they set up a dismal noise, inviting the Dutch to land, by means of signs. But, having only a small number of men, de Weert turned back towards the ships; on which the savages ran across the woods along shore, always hallowing, and making signs for the Dutch to land. When the general was informed of this adventure, he dispatched three boats well armed on shore, but the savages were not to be seen, though they had left their marks behind them, having dug up the interred body of a Dutchman, and left his body on the ground, barbarously disfigured. On going to the knights tablet, the Dutch also found it had been broken by the savages.

Early in the night of the 3d September, they got out from the Straits of Magellan into the South Sea, with a fair wind, and continued their voyage to the W.N.W. with the wind at N.E. till the 7th, having all that time fine weather. This day, however, the sea began to swell and rise so high, that the vice-admiral had to lie to and hoist his boat on board, which was likewise done by the Fidelity. While de Weert was sailing directly in the wake of the admiral, who led the fleet, an accident happened on board the yacht, which had the wind of the Fidelity, which obliged both the Faith and the Fidelity, the former being de Weert’s ship, to furl their sails, and lie to for assisting the yacht. The admiral continued his course, thinking that the other ships continued to follow him, and that the fog prevented them from being seen by the watch. The vice-admiral also was obliged to furl his sails shortly after, the fog being so thick as to prevent them from seeing each other, though very near.

On the 8th the two yachts lost sight of the ships, but these three kept company all that day; and next day the whole fleet rejoined to their great joy. After joining, Derick Geritz sent the Postillion to the admiral, to request the assistance of his carpenters; but they were sick, and those from the Faith and Fidelity went on board the yacht. This proved afterwards a serious loss to these ships, as they never got their carpenters back. The wind shifted all of a sudden, and the sea became so rough and stormy that the yacht had to furl her sails, as was done by the vice-admiral, who was ahead of the Faith, and by the Fidelity. In the ensuing night the yacht and vice-admiral made sail again, without advertising the other two ships by signal, so that they continued to lie to. When day broke next morning, Captains Baltazar de Cordes and Sebalt de Weert, of the Fidelity and Faith, were extremely troubled at not seeing any of the other ships. De Weert, who was now the senior captain, was also much troubled by the unprovided state of his ship, having no master, only two old pilots, and a very small number of seamen, mostly sick and weak through the cold and damp weather, though they kept a fire burning night and day.

The N.E. wind became so violent on the 16th September, that the two ships were every moment in danger of sinking. The gallery of the Faith was rent open above an inch, and the sea broke so violently over the Fidelity, that her men were almost constantly up to their knees in water. She likewise sprung a leak, owing to which they were forced to keep her pumps constantly going day and night, yet could hardly keep her afloat. At last, after much search, the leak was found and stopt. In this deplorable situation these two ships remained for twenty-four hours, _spooning_ under bare poles. The seamen also became much dissatisfied, though allowed two ounces of dried fish a day to each man, with a reasonable quantity of biscuit. But they were much discontented with this scanty allowance, having been used in the straits to fill themselves with muscles, of which they could not now brook the want, so that the captains had much ado to pacify them.

In the night of the 26th September they fell in with the land to the north of the straits by mistake, thinking themselves to have been twenty leagues from the land; and in the morning the Faith was in great danger, as the wind drifted her towards the coast, on which were two rocks, which they avoided with the utmost difficulty. The Fidelity, which was a considerable way in front, had discovered the rocks in time, and had easily given them a wide birth. They were only three leagues from the straits when they fell in with the land; and as the westerly wind now blew so hard that they were unable to bear up against it, the two captains now resolved to regain the straits, and to wait there in some safe road or bay for a fair wind, when they did not doubt of rejoining the other ships, as it had been agreed to wait at the island of St. Mary on the coast of Chili for two months, in case of separation. About evening, therefore, of the 27th September, they arrived at the southern point of the straits’ mouth, and were drifted by the current six or seven leagues within the straits, where they anchored in a very good road.

Sec. 3. _Incidents during their second Residence in the Straits of Magellan_.

From the 27th to the 30th of September they had tolerably good weather, but the wind then began to blow so furiously from the S.W. that they were forced to drop three anchors a-piece to keep them from being driven on shore. As the summer of these antarctic regions was now approaching, they were in hopes of fair weather; yet during two months that they remained in the straits, they scarcely had a fair day in which to dry their sails. For twenty days that they remained in this bay, to which they gave the name of the _Bay of Trouble_, they endured incredible hardships, being forced to go on shore daily in search of a few birds, which, with muscles and snails found upon the rocks, formed their sorry subsistence. Being unable to subsist any longer in that bay, they set sail on the 18th October, and found a better bay about a league farther within the straits. The 22d they were nearly destroyed by a violent storm, but the weather became calm next day. The constant employment of the seamen was to go on shore in search of muscles for their sustenance at low water, and when the tide was in to fetch wood and fresh water, so that they had no time to dry themselves, though they kept up a good fire continually. In short, during the whole nine months spent in these straits, now and formerly, they scarcely had an opportunity once to dry their sails, so frequent were the returns of rain and storms. The men also were exposed to wet, cold, and high winds, which kept them continually uncomfortable, and always at work. The seamen now began to murmur, alleging there would not be enough of biscuit for their return to Holland, if they remained here any longer. Having notice of this, de Weert went into the bread-room, as if to examine their store; and, on coming out, he declared, with a cheerful countenance, there was enough of biscuit and other provisions for eight months, though in fact there was not more than sufficient for four.

At length, on the 2d December, the wind changed to the N.E. and they immediately weighed anchor, but could not get out into the South Sea, owing to whirlwinds rising from between the high hills and the bottom of the bay. The Faith was driven at one time so near the shore that a person might have stepped ashore from her gallery, and had certainly been lost if the wind had not abated. Next day, the storm being over, the two ships got out of Close bay, as they called it, with the ebb, but they never afterwards anchored together, and that day they cast anchor at the distance of a league from each other. The 8th of December they had a more violent storm than ever, which lasted two days, and during which the waves rose sometimes higher than the masts. The storm abating on the 10th, de Weert went in his boat, intending to go aboard the Fidelity; but on doubling the point which lay between them, was overwhelmed with grief to see no ship, nor any signs of shipwreck, so that he thought she had foundered. Going next day farther towards a gulf, he was rejoiced to see a mast behind a low point, where he found the Fidelity, with which ship he had to leave his small boat to assist in fishing for her anchors and cables, which she had lost in the late storm. He then took his leave, returning to his own ship, little dreaming he had taken his last farewell of Captain de Cordes.

The 10th, going ashore in the boat for victuals as usual, and having doubled a point, they saw three canoes with savages, who went immediately on shore, and scrambled up the mountains like monkeys. The Dutch examined the canoes, in which were only a few young divers, some wooden grapnels, skins of beasts, and other things of no value. Going on shore to see if the savages had left any thing, they found a woman and two children, who endeavoured to run away, but was taken and carried on board, shewing few signs of fear or concern. She was of a middle size and reddish colour, with a big belly, a fierce countenance, and her hair close cut as if shaven, whereas the men wear their hair long. She had a string of snail-shells about her neck by way of ornament, and a seal’s skin on her shoulders, tied round her neck with a string of gut. The rest of her body was quite naked, and her breasts hung down like the udders of a cow. Her mouth was very wide, her legs crooked, and her heels very long.

This female savage would not eat any of their boiled or roasted meats, so they gave her one of the birds they had found in the canoes. Having pluckt off the long feathers, she opened it with a muscle shell, cutting in the first place behind the right wing, and then above the stomach. After that, drawing out the guts, she laid the liver a short time on the fire, and eat it almost raw. She then cleaned the gizzard, which she eat quite raw, as she did the body of the bird. Her children eat in the same manner, one being a girl of four years of age, and the other a boy, who, though only six months old, had most of his teeth, and could walk alone.[90] The woman looked grave and serious at her meal, though the seamen laughed heartily at her strange figure, and unusual mode of feeding. She afterwards sat down on her heels like an ape; and she slept all gathered up in a heap, with her infant between her arms, having her breast in his mouth. After keeping her two days on board, de Weert set her on shore, giving her a gown and cap, with necklace and bracelets of glass beads. He gave her also a small mirror, a knife, a nail, an awl, and a few other toys of small value, with which she seemed much pleased. He cloathed the boy also, and decorated him with glass beads of all colours; but carried the girl to Holland, where she died. The mother seemed much concerned at parting with her daughter, yet went into the boat without resistance or noise. She was carried to the shore, a league west from the ship, to a place which she pointed out, where the seamen found a fire and some utensils, which made the seamen believe that the savages had run away on seeing the boat.

[Footnote 90: They had no means to ascertain his age, and must have concluded him only six months old from his small size; but from his teeth and walking alone, he was more likely to have been two years old, and his diminutive size was probably occasioned by the miseries of the climate, and wretchedness of every kind to which these outcasts of nature are subjected.–E.]

When the boat returned, a new storm arose, during which the waves often overtopped the masts, and tossed the ship so violently that they momentarily expected she would have been overset or split in pieces; but, by the blessing of God, she got out of this bay, to which they gave the name of _Unfortunate Bay_. Next day they cast anchor towards evening in the channel of the straits, but finding the anchor had no buoy attached, and the weather being too violent to allow of supplying one, they had again to weigh, and put before the wind, and at length got into the bay of Cordes, fourteen or fifteen leagues farther eastwards, near the middle of the straits. In this passage they kept as near as possible to the south side of the channel, that they might be seen by the Fidelity, and even fired a gun off the mouth of a bay in which they supposed she lay, as a signal, to which they imagined that they heard another gun in answer from their consort, and continued their course in the full belief of being followed by the Fidelity. In this passage the strength of the wind drove them so fast, that they had to fasten their boat astern with two strong hawsers to preserve her, and to diminish the velocity of their course; but the heavy rolling waves broke both hawsers, and they lost their boat, by which they were reduced to great difficulty, having now no means of getting on shore in search of provisions.

Next day, being the 16th December, they saw a boat making towards them from the westwards, which occasioned various conjectures; but at length turned out to belong to the fleet of Van Noort. This unexpected meeting gave great joy to the seamen, and the men in this boat were received with much respect by de Weert. They were all in perfect health and vigour; and, among other things respecting their voyage, told of having caught above 2000 birds at the great Penguin Island. This intelligence made the sailors in the Faith extremely anxious to get there, and several of them were bold enough to tell Captain de Weert, that it was necessary they should go there, where they might as well wait for a fair wind as in any other place, and besides, that it was only a league out of their way. But de Weert declared he would on no account part company from Van Noort. This general came in person next day to visit de Weert; and the day following, being the 18th December, the whole fleet joined him. The wind changing to S.W. on the 22d, they all set sail; and after proceeding two or three hours, de Weert requested the loan of a boat from general Van Noort, with three or four men, that he might go before to direct Captain de Cordes to get ready to sail with the fleet; but he could not find the Fidelity.

The Faith was now grown very foul, and unable consequently to keep up with the fleet; for which reason, being off the Bay of Knights, where she met the ebb current, she was forced to go in there. The 23d she was again opposed by adverse currents in a narrow channel, and unable to follow the other ships. The 24th they tried again, but were unable to get round a point, behind which the fleet of Van Noort lay at anchor; and finding it impossible to double that point with the present wind, de Weert resolved to wait till it changed, that he might not fatigue his men by persisting in vain attempts. But, although the wind was contrary, Van Noort proceeded farther on, in search of a more secure anchorage, by which de Weert lost sight of the fleet, though not far off, in consequence of an intervening high point of land.

Despairing of being able to rejoin the fleet of Van Noort, and finding it impossible to subsist his men without a boat, de Weert ordered the pieces of one which were in the hold to be taken out, that they might be put together. This was on the 25th December; but having the wind at north next day, he attempted to get next day into a small bay, a league farther on than the Bay of Knights, in which the boat might be more conveniently built: but the violence of the wind forced him back into the Bay of Cordes, five leagues farther to the east. Here, on the 26th and 27th, they endured so great a storm, that the seamen began to murmur again, as having been a whole fortnight without procuring any muscles, having nothing to subsist upon in all that time but a scanty allowance of biscuit and oil. Seeing their insolence, de Weert called them into the cabin, giving them good words, and even desired their advice as to what was best to be done in this difficult conjuncture. Some were of opinion, that they should proceed to Rio de la Plata in the boat, abandoning their ship, and give themselves up to the Spaniards. Others were for going to St Helena in quest of provisions. The pilot, John Outgetz, was for going to Guinea or the Gold Coast of Africa, where he was known, having made five voyages there. None of these opinions pleased de Weert, who told them, that he could not come to any determination without the consent of Captain de Cordes.

In the mean time, the boat being now ready, de Weert went ashore in her on the 1st January, 1600, to get her properly caulked. In the afternoon, having doubled the southerly point, two boats were seen, which belonged to Van Noort, who had put back to the Bay of Knights in search of the Faith. Next day, Van Noort returned back, promising to make search for the Fidelity. De Weert also sent his boat, with his ensign and one of his pilots, on the same search, and gave them a letter for Van Noort, requesting a supply of biscuit sufficient for two months. The boat came back on the 5th with the general’s answer, saying, That he was not sure of having enough of biscuit for his own men, neither knew he how long he might be at sea, and therefore could not spare any. This answer afflicted de Weert; and having now no hopes of being again rejoined by de Cordes, he resolved to proceed for Penguin Island, to lay in a large store of these birds, and then to follow the fleet of Van Noort, if the wind proved fair. Before sailing, he wrote a letter for de Cordes, which he left buried at the foot of a tree, and nailed a board to the tree, on which was painted, _Look at the bottom of this tree_.

On the 11th January, 1600, de Weert made sail for Penguin Islands, and next day came to anchor under the smaller of these islands, where he immediately landed with thirty-eight men in tolerable health, leaving the pilots and other seamen on board. Leaving three men to keep the boat, the rest fell to killing birds, of which there were a prodigious quantity in the island. In the mean time the wind grew nigh and the sea very stormy, by which the boat was thrown so high upon the rocks, and so filled with water, that the boat-keepers were unable to get her off, or to heave out the water, and so much tossed by the surges that they expected every minute to have her stove to pieces. In this extremity the seamen were almost in despair. Without the boat it was impossible for them to return on board. They had no carpenters, no tools, and no wood, with which to repair their boat, as there was no wood whatever on the island. They were all wet, as they had waded into the water as high as their shoulders to draw the boat from the rocks, and they were starving with cold. Fortunately, at low water, the boat being aground, they recovered an axe and some tools, with a few nails, which revived their hopes of being able to get back to the ship. But as it was impossible to get the boat drawn ashore before night for repairs, they were obliged to pass the night on shore in the open air, where they made a fire of some broken planks from the boat, and eat some birds half-roasted, without bread, and with so little water that they could not quench their thirst.

As soon as day appeared on the 13th, every one went cheerfully to work, in repairing that side of the boat which was most injured, which was quite refitted before night. Next day the other side was repaired; and having loaded her with 450 penguins, they went aboard on the evening of the 14th, having been three days on shore. While they were catching penguins on the 12th, they found a savage woman, who had hid herself in one of the holes. At the time when Van Noort landed here, there was a band of savages on the island, by whom two of his men were slain; in revenge of which Van Noort had destroyed them all but this woman, who was then wounded, and who now shewed her wounds to the seamen. She was tall and well-made; her hair cut quite close to her head, and her face painted, having a kind of cloak on her body, made of the skins of beasts and birds, neatly sewed together, and reaching down to her knees, besides which she had a skin apron; so that the savages on the north side of these straits appear to be more modest in their apparel than those on the south side. By the dead body of one of these savages, who had been slain by Van Noort, it appeared that the men wore their hair very long; besides which his head was ornamented with fine feathers, and he had others round his body. They use bows and arrows, the arrows being very neatly pointed with hard flints. De Weert gave this woman a knife, who informed him by signs, that he would find a greater plenty of birds in the larger island. They left her where she was, though she requested, by signs, to be transported to the continent. They now went to the larger island, in order to get a larger supply of birds.

The old penguins weigh from twelve to sixteen pounds, and the young ones from eight to twelve. They are black on the back, with white bellies, and some have a white ring round their necks, so that they are almost half white half black. Their skin is much like that of a seal, and as thick as the skin of a wild boar. The bill is as long as that of a raven, but not so crooked; the neck short and thick, and the body as long as that of a goose, but not so thick. Instead of wings, they have only two fins or pinions, covered with feathers, which hang down as they walk upright, and by means of which they swim with great strength. They have black feet, like those of a goose, and they walk upright, with their fins or pinions hanging down like the arms of a man, so that when seen at a distance they look like so many pigmies. They seldom come ashore except in the breeding season, and then they nestle together, three or four in one hole, which they dig in the downs as deep as those of rabbits, and the ground is so full of them, that one is liable almost at every step to sink into them up to the knees. They feed entirely on fish, yet their flesh has not that rank fishy taste which is so common in sea-fowl, but is extraordinarily well tasted. _Penguin_, the name of this bird, is not derived from the Latin _pinguedo_, fatness, as the Dutch author of this voyage would have it, and therefore spells the word _pinguin_. Neither is the conjecture of the French editor of this voyage better founded, who supposes they were so called by the English from a Welsh word signifying _white-head_; and from which it has been argued that these savages are descended from a colony of Britons, supposed to have settled in America, about the year 1170, under Madoc, prince of North Wales. The truth is, the name of penguin was given to these birds by the savages.

The ship reached the greater Penguin Island on the 15th January, that island being a league from the small one; and here they found such abundance of these birds, that many ships might have been amply supplied by them instead of one, for they procured above 900 of them in less than two hours. Next day, while busy in salting the penguins, a heavy storm came on from the N.W. by which the ship was driven out of sight of the island, and to so great a distance that de Weert lost hopes of getting back to it again; on which he reduced the men to an allowance of four ounces of biscuit daily. They got back however on the 17th; but, when going to land, a fresh storm came on with such violence, that they resolved to weigh anchor and get out of the straits: but the sea was so rough that they durst not attempt this, lest the capstan should fly round. At last the anchor lost its hold; and to save the ship from being cast away, they had to cut the cable and make sail, being in great sorrow for the loss of their anchor, as they now had one only remaining.

Sec. 4. _Voyage from the Straits to Holland_.

This sad accident constrained de Weert to quit the straits, which he did on the 21st January, having a S.W. wind, chopping sometimes round to E.N.E. having now spent nine months in those seas, in a dangerous and dismal condition. In the afternoon of that day, having got into the main sea, they allowed their boat to go adrift, being rendered quite unserviceable by the late storms. The 24th in the morning, they found three small islands to windward, not marked in any maps, which they named the _Sebaldine Islands_. These are in lat. 50 deg. 40′ S. sixty leagues from the continent,[91] and contained abundance of penguins; but they could not catch any, having no boat. On the 1st February, a seaman was condemned to be hanged, for having stolen a bottle of wine and a bag of rice from the hold; and, when just about to be turned off, he was pardoned at the intercession of the crew, on condition that they should not again beg the life of any one found guilty of stealing provisions. In the evening of the 3d the same person was found drunk, and consequently must have again stolen wine, and was convicted of having stolen both wine and victuals, for which he was now hanged, and his body thrown into the sea.

[Footnote 91: In vol. VIII. p. 68, note 3, these Sebaldines have been already noticed as the north-westermost of the Falklands.–E.]

They passed the line on the 15th March; and their wine being now reduced to one pipe, that was reserved for the use of the sick, and no more was allowed to the crew. The 28th they saw Cape Monte on the coast of Guinea, when the captain was much displeased with the pilots, for having steered a different course from what he had directed. The seamen also were discontented with the captain, who would not land, because he had no boat, and only one anchor: but, being satisfied that he had biscuit enough for four months, at a quarter of a pound daily to each man, and two ounces of rice, he made the ship’s head be turned to seawards. In the night of the 1st April, they discovered some fire at a distance, thinking it were a ship; but when day broke, it was known to have been on the shore, towards which they had been insensibly driven by the current. By this time their whole stock of penguins was expended, and they must have been reduced to a very small allowance of biscuit and rice for their whole sustenance, but during five weeks that they steered along the coast of Africa, making very little progress in consequence of calms, they caught abundance of many kinds of fish, both large and small. Being uncertain how long they might remain on the coast, and fearing the want of provisions, de Weert ordered a small boat to be built by the pilot, who had been bred a ship-carpenter. This boat was finished in twelve days; but they had no need of her, for the wind became fair on the 24th April, and they made sail in the direction of the Acores.

The 3d May was held as a day of thanksgiving and prayer; and on the 21st they passed the tropic of Cancer, catching every where such abundance of fish, that, besides supplying their immediate wants, they salted and dried a considerable store. On getting near the Acores, they found no more fish, and had to use those they had dried and salted; and by this food many distempers were produced among them, particularly the scurvy. The men became as it were parched within, and so thirsty that they could not be satisfied with drink; and their bodies were covered all over with red spots, like a leprosy. The 7th, the captain was informed that some of the men had stolen biscuit; but he durst not punish the guilty, as they were the only vigorous and healthy men in the ship, and nothing could be done without them.

The ship got into the English Channel on the 6th July, when the captain landed at Dover to purchase an anchor and cable; but not being able to procure any, he sailed again that night. On the 13th, while off the mouth of the Maese, waiting the tide, and having a pilot on board, the wind came suddenly contrary, and forced him into the channel of Goeree, where a seaman died, being the sixty-ninth who died during the voyage. The thirty-six who remained alive gave thanks to God, who had preserved them through so many dangers, and had vouchsafed to bring them home.




_Narrative of the Voyage, from Holland to the South Sea_.

As the directors of the Dutch East-India Company were still anxious to make trial of the route to India by the Straits of Magellan, they appointed George Spilberg, or Spilbergen, to make this attempt in 1614, as admiral of six ships, the Great Sun, the Full Moon, the Huntsman, and a yacht called the Sea-mew, all belonging to Amsterdam, with the Eolus of Zealand, and the Morning-star belonging to Rotterdam. Spilbergen was a person of established reputation for knowledge and experience, and was allowed to chuse most of his officers. The ships were all equipped in the best possible manner, and were ready a little after Midsummer; but as the admiral was of opinion that they would arrive in the Straits of Magellan at an improper season, if they sailed so early, the directors thought proper to postpone the commencement of the voyage till the month of August.

[Footnote 92: Harris, I. 44. Callender, II. 191.]

The fleet sailed accordingly from the Texel on the 8th of August, 1614, with a strong gale at S.E. Without any remarkable accident, except several severe storms, they reached the latitude of Madeira on the 3d October. Proceeding thence by the Canaries, they lost sight of these islands on the 10th, and came in view of Brava and Fogo, two of the Cape de Verd islands, on the 23d. Having happily passed the _Abrolhos_, dangerous shoals running far out to sea, on the 9th December, they discovered the coast of Brazil on the 12th of that month. On the 19th they were off the bay of Rio de Janeiro; and on the morning of the 20th they anchored in the road of _Ilas Grandes_, between two large fine islands covered with trees, in thirteen fathoms water. Next day they anchored at another island, about half a league distant, where they caught good store of fish, besides many crocodiles or alligators, each about the length of a man. They anchored behind another island on the 23d, where they found two small huts, and a heap of human bones on a rock. Here they set up tents on shore for their sick, which were all landed that night, under the protection of three distinct guards of soldiers, lest they might be attacked by the Portuguese, who were at no great distance.

The 28th, the boats were sent for wood and fresh water to a river about two leagues from where the ships lay, and about noon next day brought off as much as they could carry. They went back for a farther supply, and were obliged to remain on shore all night, as their boats got aground with the ebb-tide. On getting to the ships on the 29th, they reported, that they had heard a confused sound of voices, as of many people, in the woods. The 30th, three boats were sent again to the watering-place, with nine or ten soldiers to protect the seamen when on shore. Shortly after, being out of sight of the fleet, several cannon-shot were heard from the Huntsman, which had been stationed to command the watering-place, on which the admiral sent three armed boats to see what was the matter. On coming to the Huntsman, they were told that five canoes, full of well-armed Portuguese and Mestees, had attacked the three boats, and slain all their men. The Dutch armed boats pursued the canoes, of which they soon came in sight; but on following them round a point, saw two stout frigates or armed barks riding at anchor, to which the canoes retired for protection, and the boats had to return to the admiral with the dismal news of the fate of their companions.

A conspiracy was discovered on the 1st January, 1615, of certain persons who proposed to have run away with one of the ships, and for which two men were executed, several others being put in irons, and distributed among the other ships of the fleet. Before leaving this place, orders were given, if any ship lost company of the rest, that her commander was to set up a conspicuous mark in the haven of de Cordes, or some other usual landing place in the straits; and, after waiting a certain fixed time, was to proceed for the isle of Mocha on the coast of Chili, as the place of rendezvous. Having no fit provisions for the sick, they resolved also to remove from the Islas Grandes to the isle of St Vincent. Here they were delayed by the Portuguese, who appear to have captured some of their men; for, having taken a bark with eighteen Portuguese on the 26th January, the Portuguese of St Vincent refused to give a smaller number of Hollanders in exchange for these, though also offered many fair manuscripts, pictures, plate, and other things belonging to the jesuits, which had been taken in the prize.

They departed from St Vincent in the beginning of February, having first burnt their prize and some buildings on shore, and furnished themselves amply with oranges and pomecitrons. In lat. 52 deg. 6′ S. they were distressed by a severe storm on the 7th March, which continued several days, and separated the ships. On the 21st a mutiny broke out, for which several of the most notoriously guilty were capitally punished. They entered the straits on the 28th, but were forced out again, by adverse winds and currents. They entered again on the 2d of April, and saw a man of gigantic stature climbing a high hill on the southern shore of the straits, called _Terra del Fuego_, or the land of fire. They went ashore on the 7th, when they saw two ostriches, and found a large river of fresh water, beside which grew many shrubs producing sweet black-berries. Being in lat. 54 deg. S. the mountains were all covered with snow, yet they found pleasant woods, in which were many parrots. To one inlet or bay they gave the name of _Pepper haven_, because the bark of a tree found there had a biting taste like pepper.

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