A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 02 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 665 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 02.

[11] The centre of the mouth of the Gambia is in lat. 13 deg. 30’ N.—­E.

[12] It may be noticed, that during the whole of his narrative, Cada
    Mosto constantly speaks of Spain, and the Spanish language, as if
    forgetting that the ships and crews were Portuguese.—­Clarke.

SECTION VIII.

The Second Voyage of Cada Mosto, in 1456, to the coast of Africa, in which the Cape de Verd Islands were Discovered[1].

As I could say little or nothing about the condition of the country of Gambia, on my return to Portugal, on account of being obliged to leave it so suddenly; partly owing to the intractable and fierce disposition of the natives, and partly through the perversity of our sailors, who refused to proceed in exploring the river; the Genoese gentleman, Antonio, who had been with me in the former voyage, and I, resolved next season to fit out two caravels, in order to return to the river Gambia, and Don Henry, who was much pleased with our intentions, determined to send one of his caravels along with us.  Every thing being made ready for our voyage, we sailed from Lagos, near Cape St Vincent, with a favourable wind, in the beginning of May, and steered for the Canaries, which we made in a few days; but, as the wind continued favourable, we did not touch there, and continued our course, to the southward; and, as we were favoured by a current setting to the S. W. we sailed on at a great rate.  At last we came in sight of Cape Branco, keeping well out at sea, and on the following night we were assailed by a great storm from the S. W. which occasioned us to steer W. by N. for two days and three nights, in order to weather the tempest, rather than turn back.  On the third day, to our great joy and surprise, we descried land, being much astonished to discover land in a quarter where no person could have expected it[2].  Two men were immediately sent aloft, who cried out that two large islands were in sight.  This news was communicated through the ships, to our great satisfaction, as we were sensible these islands were unknown in Portugal.  Judging it probable that these islands might be inhabited, and eager to try our fortune, we steered towards one of them, which we soon came up with, and sailed round a part of it, till we found safe anchorage.  The weather being now much calmed, we sent our boat on shore, well manned and armed.  The men landed, and having examined some part of the island, brought back word that they could meet with no signs of inhabitants whatever.

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