« السابقةمتابعة »
On reason build misrule, or justly bind
Christ. Licentious traitor! thou canst talk it largely,
Gust. Mistaken man!
Christ. Profane, and alien to the love of Heaven!
Gust. Yes, I know,
Of avarice and ambition. Soft and sweet,
Ye hallow'd men,
Christ. No more of this.
Gust. Imperial spoiler !
Christ. Yes, on terms
Gust. Ha! with thee!
NARRATIVE OF THE EXTRAORDINARY ADVENTURES OF FOUR
SAILORS, WHO WERE CAST AWAY ON THE DESART ISLAND OF SPITSBERGEN.
HESE northern seas, owing to the excessive cold of the climate, are frequently so full of ice, as to render it exceedingly hazardous to ships, which are thereby exposed to the danger of being crushed between two bodies of immense ice, or of being so completely surrounded, as to deprive them of every power of moving from the spot.
2. In this latter alarming situation were the crew of a Russian ship. A council was immediately held, when the mate mentioned what he recollected to have heard, that a ship's crew from Mesen, some time before, had formed a resolution of passing the winter upon this island, and for that purpose had carried timber proper for building a hut at a little distance froin the shore.
3. This information led the whole company to form the resolution of wintering there, should the hut be foriunately remaining. They were induced to adopt this measure from the certainty of perishing should they remain in the ship. They therefore deputized four of their crew to go in search of the kut, and make whạt further discoveries they could,
4. As no human creature inhabited the shore on which they were to land, it was absolutely necessary for them to carry some provisions with them for their support. They had to make their way, for nearly two miles, over loose heaps of ice, which the water had raised, and the wind had driven against each other; and this made it equally difficult and dangerous.
5. From this consideration, they avoided loading themselves too much with provisions, lest their weight might sink them between the pieces of ice, where they must in. evitably perish.
6. Having previously considered all these matters, they provided themselves only with a musket and powder horn, containing twelve charges of powder aod ball, an axe, a small kettle, a bag with about twenty pounds of four, a
knife, a tinder box and tinder, a bladder filled with tobacco, and every man his wooden pipe.
7. Thus poorly equipped, these four sailors reached the island, little thinking what they were to endure while they remained on it. After exploring some small part of the country, they discovered the hut they were in pursuit of, at the distance of about an English mile and a half from the shore.
8. Its length was thirty-six feet, and its height and breadth eighteen. It consisted of a small antichamber about twelve feet broad, having two doors, the one to exclude the outer air, and the other to form a communica. tion with the inner room. This contributed not a little to keep the larger rooin warm when it was once heated.
9. They found in the large room an earthen stove, constructed in the Russian manner. They rejoiced exceedingly at this discovery, though they found the hut had suffered very much from the severity of the weather, it baving been built a considerable time. However, they con trived to make it supportable for that night.
10. The next morning early they repaired to the shore, in order to acquaint their comrades, with their success, and also to get from the vessel such provisions, ammunition, and other necessaries, as might in some measure enable them to struggle with the approaching winter.
11. But what pen can properly describe the terrible situation of their minds, when, coming to the place at wbich they landed, they discovered nothing but an open sea, clear of all ice, though, but a day before, it had covered the ocean! During the night a violent storm had arisen, which had been the cause of this change of appearance in the ocean.
12. Whether the ice, which had before surrounded the vessel, being put in motion by the violence of the windo and waves, had crushed the ship to pieces, or whether she had been carried by the current into the main ocean, it was impossible for them to determine.
13. However, they saw the ship no more; and as she was never afterwards heard of, it is most likely that she went to the bottom with every soul on board. This dread.
ful event deprived the poor unhappy wretches of all hopes of ever again seeing their native country.
14. They returned to their hut, and there bewailed their deplorable lot, more perhaps to be pitied, than those who were buried in the bosom of the deep. Their thoughts were, of course, first directed to procure subsistence, and to repair their hut.
15. Their twelve charges of powder and shot soon produced them as many rein deer of which there fortunately happened to be many on the island. They then set about repairing their hut, and filled up the crevices, through which the aic found its way, with the moss thai
there in plenty
16. As it was impossible to live in that climate without fire, and as no wood grew upon the island, they were much alarmed on that account. However, in their wanderings over the beach, they met with plenty of wood, which had been driven on shore by the waves.
17. This principally consisted of the wrecks of ships; but sometimes whole trces with their roots came on shore, the undoubted produce of some more hospitable clime, which were washed from iheir native soil by the overflowing of rivers, or some other accident.
18. As soon as their powder and shot were exhausted, they began to be in dread of perishing with hunger; but good fortune, and their own ingenuity, to which necessity always gives a spur, removed these dreadful apprehensions. In the course of their iraversing the beach, they one day discovered some boards, in which were large hooks and nails in abundance
19. By the assistance of these, they made spears and arrows, and from a yew tree, which had been thrown on shore by the waves, they formed plenty of bows. With these weapons, during the time of their continuance on the island, they killed upwards of two hundred and fifty rein deer, besides a great number of blue and white foxes.
20. The flesh of these animals served them for food, and their skins were equally useful in supplying them with warm clothing. The number of white bears they killed were only ten; for these animals being very strong, defended themselves with great vigor an
fury, and even ventu