A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 06 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 750 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 06.

At length they arrived in the bay of Nanking, and six days afterwards to the great city of Pamor, whose bay was almost hid under three thousand vessels.  Fearing danger here they stood off and came to Tanquilem, where Similau and 36 Chinese seamen ran away for fear; because Antonio, weary of the voyage, and finding that Similau could give no good account of where they were, threatened to kill him.  Similau was not indeed ignorant, but he was so terrified by the ill usage of the Portuguese that he knew not what he said, and they were afraid that either he knew not the coast or meant to betray them.  It was a great error to believe him at Liampo, and to use him ill at Nanking where they had most need of him.  In fine the Portuguese gave themselves up for lost, not knowing where they were till some of the natives informed them that they were only ten leagues from the island of Calempluy, on which they sore repented the ill usage they had given to Similau.  Doubling Cape Guinaytarau, after a tedious voyage of two months and a half, they discovered the island of which they were in search in the middle of the river.  This island is quite plain and seemed four miles round.  Next morning Antonio sailed round it in his galliots, and found it surrounded by a wall of jasper so closely built that it seemed all one stone.  The wall rose 19 feet above the surface of the water, and was terrassed on the inside.  On the top of the wall was a massy twist, on which was a brass rail, having little columns at regular distances, on which were the statues of women having balls in their hands, all likewise of brass.  At some distance from these were figures of iron, of monstrous shapes, that seemed to give each other their hands; and further on were several curious arches of stones of various colours.  On the inside there were afterwards seen a delightful assemblage of small groves of orange trees, among which were 366 chapels dedicated to the gods of the year.  On one side was a great building, not all of a piece, but divided into seven parts, all over splendidly ornamented with gold.

In the evening Antonio entered the island by one of its eight gates, accompanied by sixty men, four of whom were Portuguese.  On entering one of the chapels, they saw a man who seemed an hundred years of age, who fell down with fear; but, on recovering, rebuked the soldiers for taking the bars of silver from the tombs.  Having received information of what was in the other chapels, Antonio went on board with a considerable quantity of silver taken from the first chapel, meaning to return next day to plunder them all.  About midnight, lights were seen on the top of the great building, and numbers of bell were heard all over the island.  Antonio went again on shore, though advised to make off as the alarm was given.  He brought away two old men with some candlesticks and a silver idol, and was informed that the island would soon be relieved, as the first hermit

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 06 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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