Narrative of a Voyage to Senegal in 1816 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 230 pages of information about Narrative of a Voyage to Senegal in 1816.

INTRODUCTION

[Transcriber’s Note:  These notes are put in the text with the numbering Axx or Bxx]

The following Notes were communicated to the Authors, when the second edition was already so far advanced, as to render it impracticable to incorporate them with the body of the work, and they are therefore placed at the end.  Some of them are extracted from the Journal of Mr. Bredif, who belonged to the expedition, and were communicated by his uncle, Mr. Landry; the others are by an officer of merit, whose modesty prevents the publication of his name.

The Translator has thought it would be more convenient to place these notes in one series, referring to the pages to which they belong.  Those of Mr. Bredif, are signed (B) the others (A).

NOTES.

[A1] I.—­On the Route to Africa.

In going from Europe to the western coasts of Africa, situated to the north of the line, it is better still, to pass between the Azores and Madeira, and not to come within sight of the coast, till you have nearly reached the latitude of the point where you desire to land.  Nothing but the necessity of procuring refreshments can authorise vessels, bound to the Cape of Good Hope, or to the south of America, to touch at the Canaries, or at the Cape Verd Islands.  Notwithstanding the depth of the channels between the first of these islands, these seas, which are subject both to calms and hurricanes are not without danger.  By keeping at a distance, there is also the advantage of avoiding the current of Gibraltar, and of not running the risk of meeting with the north west winds, which generally prevail along the desert, (and hitherto insufficiently known.) Coasts of Zaara, along which the Medusa sailed to no purpose, and which winds also tend to impel vessels upon the dangerous bank of Arguin. (A)

[A2] II.—­On the Manoeuvres before Funchal.

The usual indecision, which the commander of the frigate displayed in all his resolutions, joined to a little accident, made him change the intention which he had expressed of presenting himself before Funchal.  From a singularity which nothing justified, he appeared to have more confidence in one of the passengers, who had indeed, frequented these seas, than in any of his officers, in respect to the management of the vessel.  As they approached Madeira, the vessel was worked almost entirely according to the advice of this passenger; but suddenly the breeze, which is always strong in the neighbourhood of these mountainous countries, fell when they got too near it, the sails flagged, the current seemed rapid; but after some hesitation in the manoeuvring of the vessel, which the officers soon put into proper order, they recovered the wind, and it was resolved to steer for Teneriffe. (A)

[A3] III.—­On the Islands of Madeira and Teneriffe.

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