We here found Governor Boon and others, bound for England in the London Indiaman. We had a pleasant voyage from the cape to St Helena, and thence to England, arriving off the Land’s-end towards the close of July. On coming into the British channel we had brisk gales from the west, with thick foggy weather. In the evening of the 30th July we anchored under Dungeness, and that same night some of the supercargoes and passengers, among whom I was one, hired a small vessel to carry us to Dover, where we arrived the next morning early. The same day we proceeded for London, and arrived there on the 1st August, 1722. Thus ended a long, fatiguing, and unfortunate voyage, of three years, seven months, and eleven days, in which I had sailed considerably more than round the circumference of the globe, and had undergone a great variety of troubles and hardships by sea and land.
Supplement to the foregoing Voyage.
In the Collection of Harris, besides interweaving several controversial matters respecting this voyage, from an account of it by one Betagh, who was captain of marines in the Speedwell, a long series of remarks on the conduct of Shelvocke by that person, are appended. Neither of these appear to possess sufficient interest, at this distance of time, almost a century, to justify their insertion in our collection, where they would have very uselessly occupied a considerable space. Captain Betagh appears to have been actuated by violent animosity against Captain Shelvocke, whose actions he traduced and misrepresented with the utmost malignity, the innocent cause of his having suffered captivity among the Spaniards in South America, of which some account will be found in the subsequent section. Of all these charges, we have only deemed it expedient to insert the following statement of the circumstances connected with the capture of the Conception, as related by Betagh, which Harris, I. 230, characterizes as “a very extraordinary piece of recent history, and seemingly supported by evidence;” but at this distance of time we have no means of ascertaining to which side the truth belongs.—Ed.
“This being the great crisis of the voyage, I shall be more particular in relating the affair of this last prize. This ship was named the Conception, Don Stephen de Recova commander, bound from Calao to Panama, having on board several persons of distinction, particularly the Conde de la Rosa, who had been some time governor of Pisco, and was now going to Spain, laden with flour, sugar, marmalade, et cetera. Now, be it known to all men, that the et cetera was 108,630 pieces of eight, or Spanish dollars: And Shelvocke little thought, when he took this prize, or compiled his book, that I, of all men, should have the exact state of this affair. He often said that he would give the gentlemen owners a fair account; and I have often promised to prove that he did say so. We have now both made our words good, and I have not only an authentic account, but I will also declare how I got it.