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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.

Finding ourselves in a country where our interpreters were of no use, and considering therefore that it would be to no purpose for us to proceed any farther, we determined to return.  We stayed two days in the mouth of this large river, which we therefore named Rio Grande[8], and where we found the north pole very low[9].  In this place we found great irregularity in the tides; for, whereas at Venice, and all other places in Europe, the flux and reflux are each of six hours continuance, the tide here only flows four hours, and ebbs eight, and the violence of the flowing tide is quite incredible, insomuch that we had great difficulty to stem it with three anchors a-head.  Nay, such was its impetuosity, that we were sometimes obliged to hoist our sails, and even then it exceeded the force of the wind.

Taking our departure from the mouth of this vast river, on our way back to Portugal, we directed our course to two large islands and some small ones, which lay about thirty miles distance from the continent, which we found quite low, yet full of large and beautiful green trees, and inhabited by Negroes[10].  Encountering here the same difficulty of intercourse, for want of knowing their language, we made no stop, but took our departure for Portugal, where we arrived in safety.

[1] At this place Grynaeus calls him Batrinense; though he had named him
    rightly Bati-mansa before.—­Astl.

[2] This is now called Cape St Mary.—­E.

[3] This seems to allude to what is now called Bald Cape, about twenty
    miles south from Cape St Mary, and stretching somewhat farther west;
    from which there extends breakers or sunken rocks a considerable
    distance from the land.—­E.

[4] Between the mouth of the Gambia and that of the Casamansa, there are
    three inlets, which appear to be smaller mouths of the latter river. 
    The most northern of these is named St Peter, the most southerly
    Oyster river; the intermediate one has no name.—­E.

[5] The actual distance is barely a degree of latitude, or less than
    seventy English miles.  Cada Mosto probably estimated by the log, the
    more circuitous track by sea.—­E.

[6] Cada Mosto does not mention the remarkable change which takes place
    here in the direction of the coast.  From the Gambia to Cape Rosso, the
    coast runs direct south; after which its direction is E.S.E. to the
    mouth of the river St Ann.—­E.

[7] Called in modern charts, Rio S. Dominica.—­E.

[8] According to de Faria, Rio Grande was discovered by Nunez Tristan in
    1447, nine years before it was visited by Cada Mosto.—­Astl.

[9] Cada Mosto is exceedingly superficial in his account of the Rio Grande;
    and it even seems dubious if he ever saw or entered this river, as he
    appears to have mistaken the navigable channel between the main and
    the shoals of the Rio Grande for the river itself; which channel
    extends above 150 English miles, from the island of Bulam in the E.S.E.
    to the open sea in the W.N.W.  This channel agrees with his description,
    in being twenty miles wide, whereas the real Rio Grande is greatly
    smaller than the Gambia.—­E.

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