A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 12 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 760 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 12.

On the third of May, about four in the afternoon, we had an observation of the sun and moon, by which we found our longitude to be 96 deg.26 W. the variation by the azimuth was 5 deg.44’E. at six in the evening, and at six the next morning, it was 5 deg.58’E, Our latitude, this day at noon, was 28 deg.20’S.  At four in the afternoon, we had several observations for the longitude, and found it to be 96 deg.21’ W.; at seven in the evening, the variation was 6 deg.40’E. by the azimuth, and the next morning at ten it was, by amplitude, 5 deg.48’E.; at three in the afternoon, the variation, by amplitude, was 7 deg.40’E.  This day we saw a tropic bird.

At six o’clock in the morning of Friday the eighth of May, the variation of the needle, by amplitude, was 7 deg.11’ E. In the afternoon we saw several sheer-waters and sea-swallows.  At eight in the morning of the 9th, the variation, by azimuth, was 6 deg.34’E. and in the morning of the 11th, by azimuth and amplitude, it was 4 deg.40’E.  Our latitude was 27 deg.20’S. longitude, by account, 106 deg.W.  This day and the next we saw several sea-swallows, sheer-waters, and porpoises, about the ship.

On the 14th of May, the variation, by four azimuths, was 2 deg.E.  About four o’clock-in the afternoon, we saw a large flock of brown birds, flying to the eastward, and something which had the appearance of high land, in the same quarter.  We bore away for it till sun-set, and it still having the same appearance, we continued our course; but at two in the morning, having run eighteen leagues without making it, we hauled the wind, and at day-light nothing was to be seen.  We had now the satisfaction to find our ailing people mend apace.  Our latitude was 24 deg.50’S. our longitude, by account, 106 deg.W.  During all this time, we were looking out for the Swallow.[50]

[Footnote 50:  This is very liable to be controverted.  Captain W. well knew the bad condition and insufficiency of that vessel, and had, in consequence, promised to wait on her.  But did he so, after he cleared the streights?  Did he even appoint a rendezvous or place of meeting with her, after getting into the South Sea?—­a thing so common for vessels sailing in concert.  He has assigned his reasons for not doing the former, in Section II.  Of his neglect of the latter, no satisfactory account perhaps can be given.  The reader will have some cause of wonder and displeasure at more persons than one, when he peruses what Captain Carteret has to say as to the propriety of sending out the Swallow on this voyage.  One can scarcely help inferring from his words, that he had been intended as a mere forlorn hope, in navigating the difficult and dangerous passage betwixt the two oceans.—­E.]

At four in the afternoon of the 16th, the variation, by azimuth and amplitude, was 6 deg.E. and at six the next morning, by four azimuths, it was 3 deg.20’.

The carpenters were now employed in caulking the upper works of the ship, and repairing and painting the boats, and on the 18th I gave a sheep among the people that were sick and recovering.

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