Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

the apple and other fruits of common English growth. The different compartments were enclosed by hedges of geranium bearing a full-blown scarlet blossom, in appearance particularly rich and beautiful.

An intimation from Captain Walker, that the vessel was ready for sea, precluded the possibility of extending our excursion so far into the island as we had intended, and with much regret we were compelled to return on board.

Through the zealous attention of the British Consul (Mr. Parkins) who procured for us during that day every necessary we stood in need of, the Hornby was, by five o'clock in the afternoon, cleared out, and once more ready to proceed on her voyage. About six we weighed anchor and steered a N. E. course, close by the west point of the island of Saint George's, next morning observed Gracioza, bearing E. and by N., and at eleven o'clock passed within four miles of it. Its general appearance was rather barren, presenting a brown turflike soil, and much covered with heather;

towards the S. W. end the shore bluff and rocky, against which the sea beats with much violence and breaks to an immense height; the interior of the island is mountainous. The wind continued favourable until the sixth of June, when it shifted round to the N. E., and sent us considerably out of our course to the westward. The wind still continuing adverse, we on the tenth tacked, and stood in for the Bay of Biscay, when it became variable, and gradually veering round to the N. W. we were obliged to continue beating about, occasionally trying for soundings; our longitude, from the rapid currents, baffling winds, fc., was uncertain, but we supposed ourselves in the long. of Ushant. On Saturday the thirteenth we got soundings in 80 fathoms, and next day at noon discovered Ushant, bearing E. and by N. distant about five leagues. The wind still becoming more favourable, we, at 5 P.M., cleared Ushant, stood up Channel with a fine breeze, and late on the following day (16th June) arrived in Portsmouth harbour. We

took leave of Captain Walker, with mutual feelings of friendship and regard ; his conduct and attention throughout the voyage having evinced the warm kindness of his heart, and secured our lasting and most grateful remembrance.

[ocr errors][merged small]

I HAVE endeavoured to give, in the preceding pages, a full and explicit account of every interesting and important occurrence connected with the late unfortunate enterprise; but being totally unaccustomed to literary composition, and having now, for the first, and probably for the last time, ventured to intrude upon the public attenlion, I trust indulgence will be extended to its defects and inaccuracies. in any degree, aim at the character of an Author ; should, therefore, my little Narrative, from the temporary importance of its súbject, be considered deserving of notice, it will, I trust encounter mild and lenient criticism

Had I exclusively consulted my own individual feelings, I would have cautiously

I do not,

shunned the notoriety to which a work of the kind must, more or less, give rise. My private inclinations, however, have been sacrificed to a sense of public duty, and the earnest solicitations of friends, who (aware of the flattering expectations diligently excited by the Patriot Agents in England, and the injury and sufferings to which a confidence in their sincerity and good faith has given birth) urged me in the strongest manner to publish an immediate and minute statement of every circumstance relative to the formation, history, and fate of the expedition to which I was so unfortunately attached.

Such a detail is, at this time, more peculiarly important; as the Agents, who have, by their intrigues and deception, occasioned the misery or destruction of such numbers of British officers, continue actively engaged in prosecuting similar disgraceful and unwarrantable practices; nor are these proceedings confined to the individuals who have been so long and unaccountably permitted to carry on the system of delusion in this country, under

« AnteriorContinuar »