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Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 685 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 07.

[Footnote 224:  Meaning the Decades of Peter Martyr, part of which book was translated and published by Richard Eden.—­Astl I. 149. b.]

In this voyage, though they sailed to Guinea in seven weeks, they took twenty to return; owing to this cause, as they reported, that about the coast at Cape Verd the wind was continually east, so that they were obliged to stand far out into the ocean, in search of a western wind to bring them home.  In this last voyage about twenty-four of the men died, many of them between the Azores and England, after their return into the cold or temperate region.  They brought with them several black slaves[225], some of whom were tall strong men, who could well agree with our meats and drinks.  The cold and moist air of England somewhat offended them; yet men who are born in hot regions can much better endure cold, than those of cold regions can bear heat; because violent heat dissolves the radical moisture of the human body, while cold concentrates and preserves it.  It is to be considered as among the secrets of nature, that while all parts of Africa under the equator, and for some way on both sides, are excessively hot, and inhabited by black people, such regions in the West Indies [America], under the same parallels, are very temperate, and the natives are neither black, nor have they short curled wool on their heads like the Africans; but are of an olive colour, with long black hair.  The cause of this difference is explained in various places of the Decades.  Some of those who were upon this voyage told me that on the 14th of March they had the sun to the north of them at noon.

[Footnote 225:  In a side note, five blacke moors.—­E.]

SECTION IV.

Voyage to Guinea in 1555, by William Towerson, Merchant of London[226].

On Monday the 30th of September 1555, we sailed from the harbour of Newport, in the Isle of Wight, with two good ships, the Hart and the Hind, both belonging to London, of which John Ralph and William Carters were masters, bound on a voyage for the river Sestos, in Guinea, and other harbours in that neighbourhood.  Owing to variable winds, we could not reach Dartmouth before the 14th of October; and having continued there till the 20th of that month, we warpt out of the harbour, and set sail to the S.W. and by next morning had run 30 leagues.  On the 1st November, by the reckoning of our master, we were in lat. 31 deg.  N. and that day we ran 40 leagues.  The 2d we ran 36 leagues; and on the 3d we had sight of Porto Santo, a small island about three leagues long and one and a-half broad, belonging to the Portuguese, and lying in the ocean.  As we came towards it from the N.N.W. it seemed like two small hills near each other.  The east end of the island is a high land like a saddle, having a valley which gives it that appearance; while the west end is lower, with several small round hillocks[227]. 

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