A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 09 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 730 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 09.
was furnished with abundance of all things the country could afford, and only wanted an upright cause.  He found what he was in search of,—­four poor merchant ships, having few men, many being dead, and more sick; and these bragadocios, measuring our hearts by their own, thought we could never stand against what they esteemed so superior a force; and, seeing their intent, I baited my hook, which the fish presently ran after.

The Hope, being heavily laden, was in tow of the Hector, and being sternmost, three of the Portuguese ships, and thirty or forty of their frigates, as I had expected, boarded her with the flower of all their chivalry.  But, by the hand of God, and to their great amazement, they received such a blow that few of them escaped, and these by extraordinary chance, and three of their ships were burnt.[130] Thus it pleased God to baffle this their first assault.  Ever after, though they beleaguered us round about for many days together, with all sorts of ships, our people still in action, and sadly worn out with continual labour, even shifting goods from ship to ship in that time, yet did they never gain from us even the value of a louse in all that time, except our bullets, which we most willingly gave them roundly, their fire-boats always failing, and nothing prospering in all their efforts.  For many days together I sent the viceroy a defiance once every twenty-four hours, which must needs lie heavy on the stomach of so courageous a gentleman.  Craving pardon for this digression, I now proceed with my narrative.

[Footnote 130:  I strongly suspect this to be a mere recapitulation of what happened in Swally roads, as already related, as this second attack on the Hope by the Portuguese is entirely omitted by Elkington and Dodsworth.—­E.]

The 6th, in the morning, I sent for my master, letting him know that I proposed, when the viceroy should come up near us, to cast about and charge him suddenly, that we might strike unexpected terror in his people, who now bragged us, seeing us flee before them.  To this end I went on board all the ships, giving them directions how to act, and gave orders to the Hector, by means of her pinnace and mine, to take in an hundred bales of goods from the Hope, to lighten her, and even staid to see it done.  By this time it was mid-day, when my ship struck sail for my better getting on board; at which, the viceroy thinking it staid for him in contempt, as we imagined, be and his consorts bore up with the shore, and gave up all hope of mending their fortunes by following us any farther; which course I very well liked, as there is nothing under his foot to make amends for the loss of the worst man’s finger in all our ships.  Besides, I wished for no occasion of fighting unless for the honour of my king and country as I would rather save the life of one of my poorest sailors than kill a thousand enemies.

Having now finished with the viceroy, I set myself to write letters for the dispatch of the Hope, yet still thinking to have stood in for the bar of Goa to endeavour to have left some compliments there for the viceroy at his return.  This was my earnest desire, but we were so long delayed in dispatching the Hope, that by the time we had finished, we were far beyond Goa.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 09 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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