Knickerbocker's History of New York, Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 356 pages of information about Knickerbocker's History of New York, Complete.
world around him began to grow more shallow and confined, the current more rapid and perfectly fresh—­phenomena not uncommon in the ascent of rivers, but which puzzled the honest Dutchman prodigiously.  A consultation was therefore called, and having deliberated full six hours, they were brought to a determination by the ship’s running aground—­whereupon they unanimously concluded that there was but little chance of getting to China in this direction.  A boat, however, was despatched to explore higher up the river, which, on its return, confirmed the opinion; upon this the ship was warped off and put about with great difficulty, being, like most of her sex, exceedingly hard to govern; and the adventurous Hudson, according to the account of my great-great-grandfather, returned down the river—­with a prodigious flea in his ear!

Being satisfied that there was little likelihood of getting to China, unless, like the blind man, he returned from whence he set out, and took a fresh start, he forthwith recrossed the sea to Holland, where he was received with great welcome by the Honorable East India Company, who were very much rejoiced to see him come back safe—­with their ship; and at a large and respectable meeting of the first merchants and burgomasters of Amsterdam it was unanimously determined that, as a munificent reward for the eminent services he had performed, and the important discovery he had made, the great river Mohegan should be called after his name; and it continues to be called Hudson River unto this very day.

FOOTNOTES: 

   [22] True it is, and I am not ignorant of the fact, that in a
        certain apocryphal book of voyages, compiled by one Hackluyt, is
        to be found a letter written to Francis the First, by one
        Giovanni, or John Verazzani, on which some writers are inclined
        to found a belief that this delightful bay had been visited
        nearly a century previous to the voyage of the enterprising
        Hudson.  Now this (albeit it has met with the countenance of
        certain very judicious and learned men) I hold in utter
        disbelief, and that for various good and substantial reasons: 
        First, because on strict examination it will be found that the
        description given by this Verazzani applies about as well to the
        bay of New York as it does to my nightcap.  Secondly, because that
        this John Verazzani, for whom I already begin to feel a most
        bitter enmity, is a native of Florence, and everybody knows the
        crafty wiles of these losel Florentines, by which they filched
        away the laurels from the brows of the immortal Colon (vulgarly
        called Columbus), and bestowed them on their officious townsman,
        Amerigo Vespucci; and I make no doubt they are equally ready to
        rob the illustrious Hudson of the credit of discovering

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Knickerbocker's History of New York, Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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