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

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 664 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 10.

By the 27th of February they were in lat. 40 deg.  S. with fair weather, continuing their course to the north; but on the 28th, they determined to sail for the island of Juan Fernandez, to give some rest and refreshment to their sickly and wearied company.  That day their latitude at noon was 35 deg. 53’ S. In the evening they shortened sail, fearing to fall in with the land in the night.  Next day, being the 1st of March, they saw the islands of Juan Fernandez to the N.N.E. and got up to them at noon, being in the lat. of 35 deg. 53’ S.[110] The smaller of these islands is that to the westwards, [Masafuero,] which is very barren and rocky.  The greater [Juan Fernandez,] to the eastwards, though also very high and mountainous, is yet fruitful and well shaded with trees.  This island affords plenty of hogs and goats; and there is such excellent fishing all round, that the Spaniards come hither for that purpose, and transport vast quantities of fish from hence to Peru.

[Footnote 110:  The latitude of Juan Fernandez is only 33 deg. 42’ S. The two islands mentioned in the text under this name, are Juan Fernandez and Masafuero; the former in long. 77 deg. 80’, the latter in 79 deg. 40’, both W. from Greenwich.  Or perhaps, the second island may be the Small Goat’s or Rabbit Island, off its S.W. end, called Isola de Cabras, or de Conejos.—­E.]

The road or haven of Juan Fernandez, [named la Baia, or Cumberland Harbour,] is at the east end of the island; but they shaped their course to the west end, where they could find no place in which to anchor.  The boat being sent in search of an anchorage, brought an account of a beautiful valley, full of trees and thickets, and refreshed by streams of water running down from the hills, with a variety of animals feeding in this pleasant spot.  The boat brought also great store of fish on board, being mostly lobsters and crabs, and reported having seen many sea wolves.  Finding the island inaccessible, they took a considerable quantity of fish, and procured a supply of fresh water, after which they determined to pursue their voyage.

The 11th March they passed the tropic of Capricorn to the north, the wind in general being E.S.E. and they held their course N.N.W. till the 15th, when being in lat. 18 deg.  S. they changed their course to W. The 3d April they were in 15 deg. 12’ S. being then much afflicted with the flux, and that day they saw a small low island which they got up to at noon.  Finding no bottom, they could not come to anchor, but sent some men ashore in the boat.  They found nothing here fit for refreshment, except some herbs which tasted like scurvy grass, and saw some dogs which could neither bark nor snarl, and for which reason they named it Dog Island.  It is in lat. 15 deg. 12’, and they judged it to be 925 leagues west from the coast of Peru.[111] The interior of this island is so low, that it seemed mostly overflowed at high water, its outskirt being a sort of dike or mound, overgrown with trees, between which the salt water penetrates in several places.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 10 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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