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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.

The greatest want is of industrious and husbandly inhabitants, to till and improve the ground; for the common sort, if they can only provide sufficient to serve them from hand to mouth, take no farther care.  Good land was to be had here for fourpence an acre of yearly rent.  They had very small store of money among them, for which reason, perhaps, they doubled and trebled the prices of every thing we bought, in proportion to what they had been before our arrival.  They have mines of alum, tin, brass, and iron; and we saw certain natural stones, as clear as crystal, and naturally squared like diamonds.  That part of the country is full of great mountains and hills, whence run many pleasant streams of fine water.  The native hardiness of the Irish nation may be conceived from this, that their young children, even in the midst of winter, run about the streets with bare legs and feet, and often having no other apparel than a scanty mantle to cover their nakedness.  The chief officer of their town is called the sovereign, who hath the same office and authority among them with our mayors in England, having his Serjeants to attend upon him, and a mace carried before mm as they have.  We were first entertained at the sovereigns house, which was one of the four that withstood the Earl of Desmond in his rebellion.

They have the same form of common prayer, word for word, that we have, only that it is in Latin.  On Sunday, the sovereign goeth to church having his Serjeant before him, and accompanied by the sheriff and others of the town.  They there kneel down, every one making his prayers privately by himself.  They then rise up and go out of the church again to drink.  After this, they return again to church, and the minister makes prayers.  Their manner of baptising differs somewhat from ours, part of the service belonging to it being in Latin and part in Irish.  The minister takes the child on his hands, dipping it first backwards and then forwards, over head and ears into the cold water even in the midst of winter.  By this the natural hardiness of the people may appear, as before specified.  They had neither bell, drums, nor trumpet, to call the parishioners together, but wait for the coming of the sovereign, when those that have devotion follow him.  Their bread is all baked in cakes, and the bakers bake for all the town, receiving a tenth part for their trouble.  We had of them some ten or eleven tons of beer for the Victory; but it acted as a severe purge upon all who drank it, so that we chose rather to drink water.

Having provided ourselves with fresh water, we set sail from thence on the 20th December, accompanied by Sir Edward Dennie and his lady, with two young sons.  In the morning of that day, my lord went on shore to hasten the dispatch of some fresh water for the Victory, and brought us news that sixty Spanish prizes were taken and brought to England.  For two or three days after we sailed, we had a fair wind; but it afterwards scanted, so that we were fain to

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