A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 10 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 762 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 10.
four months, at a quarter of a pound daily to each man, and two ounces of rice, he made the ship’s head be turned to seawards.  In the night of the 1st April, they discovered some fire at a distance, thinking it were a ship; but when day broke, it was known to have been on the shore, towards which they had been insensibly driven by the current.  By this time their whole stock of penguins was expended, and they must have been reduced to a very small allowance of biscuit and rice for their whole sustenance, but during five weeks that they steered along the coast of Africa, making very little progress in consequence of calms, they caught abundance of many kinds of fish, both large and small.  Being uncertain how long they might remain on the coast, and fearing the want of provisions, de Weert ordered a small boat to be built by the pilot, who had been bred a ship-carpenter.  This boat was finished in twelve days; but they had no need of her, for the wind became fair on the 24th April, and they made sail in the direction of the Acores.

The 3d May was held as a day of thanksgiving and prayer; and on the 21st they passed the tropic of Cancer, catching every where such abundance of fish, that, besides supplying their immediate wants, they salted and dried a considerable store.  On getting near the Acores, they found no more fish, and had to use those they had dried and salted; and by this food many distempers were produced among them, particularly the scurvy.  The men became as it were parched within, and so thirsty that they could not be satisfied with drink; and their bodies were covered all over with red spots, like a leprosy.  The 7th, the captain was informed that some of the men had stolen biscuit; but he durst not punish the guilty, as they were the only vigorous and healthy men in the ship, and nothing could be done without them.

The ship got into the English Channel on the 6th July, when the captain landed at Dover to purchase an anchor and cable; but not being able to procure any, he sailed again that night.  On the 13th, while off the mouth of the Maese, waiting the tide, and having a pilot on board, the wind came suddenly contrary, and forced him into the channel of Goeree, where a seaman died, being the sixty-ninth who died during the voyage.  The thirty-six who remained alive gave thanks to God, who had preserved them through so many dangers, and had vouchsafed to bring them home.




Narrative of the Voyage, from Holland to the South Sea.

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