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[34] impetuosity as that of the Guadalquiver at its conflict with the sea; and this continued constantly day and night, so that it appeared to be impossible to move backwards for the current, or forwards for the shoals.

Iv.—Columbus at the mouth of the Orinoco.

In the dead of night, while I was on deck, I heard an awful roaring that came from the south towards the ship. I stopped to observe what it might be, and I saw the sea rolling from west to east, like a mountain as high as the ship, and approaching by little and little. On the top of this rolling sea came a mighty wave, roaring with a frightful noise; and with all this terrific uproar were other conflicting currents, producing, as I have already said, a sound as of breakers upon the rocks. To this day I have a vivid recollection of the dread I then felt, lest the ship might founder under the force of that tremendous sea; but it passed by, and reached the mouth of the before-mentioned passage, where the uproar lasted for a considerable time. On the following day 1 sent out boats to take soundings, and found that in the strait, at the deepest part of the embouchure,1 there were six or seven fathoms of water, and that there were constant contrary currents,—one running inwards, and the other outwards. It pleased the Lord, however, to give us a favorable wind; and I passed through the middle of the strait, after which I recovered my tranquillity. The men happened at this time to draw up some water from the sea, which, strange

1 Mouth.

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