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 So, upon Saturday, in the afternoon, the 31st of August, we changed our course, and returned back for England, at which very instant, even in winding about, there passed along between us and the land which we now forsook, a very lion, to our seeming, in shape, hair, and color; not swimming after the manner of a beast, by moving of his feet, but rather sliding upon the water with his whole body—not excepting the legs—in sight; neither yet diving under, and again rising above the water, as the manner is of whales, dolphins, tunnies, porpoises, and all other fish, but confidently showing himself above water without hiding, notwithstanding we presented ourselves in open view and gestures to amaze him, as all creatures will be commonly at a sudden gaze and sight of men. Thus he passed along, turning his head to and fro, yawning and gaping wide, with ugly demonstration of long teeth and glaring eyes; and to bid us a farewell, coming right against the ‘Hind,’ he sent forth a horrible voice, roaring or bellowing as doth a lion; which spectacle we all beheld so far as we were able to discern the same, as men prone to wonder at every strange thing, as this doubtless was, to see a lion in the ocean sea, or fish in the shape of a lion. What opinion others had thereof, and chiefly the general himself, I forbear to deliver; but he took it for bonum omen,1 rejoicing that he was to war against such an enemy, if it were the devil. . . . . . Leaving the issue of this good hope unto God, who knoweth the truth only, and can at his good pleasure bring the same to light, I will hasten to the end of this tragedy, which must be knit up in the person of our
1 A good omen. This was probably a large seal, or sea-lion.
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