A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 11 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 783 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 11.

Thus these eleven Indians, with a resolution perhaps without example, possessed themselves almost in an instant of the quarter-deck of a ship mounting sixty-six guns, and manned by near five hundred hands, and even continued in peaceable possession of this part for some time.  During a considerable space, the officers in the great cabin, among whom were Pizarro and Mindinuetta, the crew between decks, and those who had escaped into the tops and rigging, were merely anxious for their own safety, and were incapable of forming any project for suppressing the insurrection and recovering the possession of the ship.  The yells of the Indians, the groans of the wounded, and the confused clamours of the crew, all heightened by the darkness of the night, had at first greatly magnified the danger, and filled them with imaginary terrors.  The Spaniards were sensible of the dissatisfaction of their impressed hands, and were conscious of their barbarity to their prisoners, wherefore they concluded that the conspiracy was general, and considered their own destruction as infallible; insomuch, that some are said to have designed to leap into the sea, but were prevented by their companions.

When the Indians had entirely cleared the quarter-deck, the tumult in a great measure subsided; for those who had escaped were kept silent by their fears, and the Indians were incapable of pursuing them.  Orellana, when master of the quarter-deck, broke open the arm-chest, which had been ordered there a few days before, on a slight suspicion of mutiny.  He there expected to find cutlasses wherewith to arm himself and his followers, who were all well skilled in the use of that weapon, and with these it is imagined they proposed to have forced the great cabin:  But on opening the chest, there appeared nothing but fire-arms, which to them were of no use.  There were indeed abundance of cutlasses in the chest, but they were hidden by the fire-arms being laid uppermost.  This was a sensible disappointment to Orellana and his Indians.  By this time Pizarro and his companions in the great cabin had been able to communicate with those below in the gun-room and between decks, by conversing aloud through the cabin windows; by which means they learnt that the English prisoners, whom they chiefly suspected, were all safe below, and had not participated in the mutiny; and by other circumstances they were at last made sensible that Orellana and his people only were concerned in it.  Upon this information, Pizarro and the officers resolved to attack them on the quarter-deck, before any of the discontented on board had so far recovered from their surprise as to reflect on the facility of seizing the ship by joining with the Indians.  With this view, Pizarro collected what arms were in the cabin and distributed them to those who were with him.  There were no fire-arms except pistols, and for these they had neither powder nor ball; but having now a correspondence with the gun-room, they lowered a bucket from the cabin

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 11 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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