yet they ‘were commonly lords in the harbors,’ and
in the arrogance of naval supremacy, exacted payment 1578 for protection.1
It is an incident honorable to the humanity of the early voyagers, that, on one of the American
islands, not far from the fishing stations, hogs and horned cattle were purposely left, that they might multiply and become a resource to some future generation of colonists.2
While the queen and her adventurers were dazzled by the glittering prospects of mines of gold in the frozen regions of the remote north, Sir Humphrey Gilbert
, with a sounder judgment and a better knowledge, watched the progress of the fisheries, and formed healthy plans for colonization.
He had been a soldier and a member of parliament.
He was a judicious writer on navigation;3
and though censured for his ignorance of the principles of liberty,4
he was esteemed for the sincerity of his piety.
He was one of those who alike despise fickleness and fear: danger never turned him aside from the pursuit of honor or the service of his sovereign; for he knew that death is inevitable, and the fame of virtue immortal.5
It was not difficult for Gilbert
to obtain a liberal patent,6
formed according to
commercial theories of that day, and to be of perpetual efficacy, if a plantation should be established within six years. To the people who might belong to his colony, the rights of Englishmen were promised; to Gilbert
, the possession for himself or his assigns of the soil which he might discover, and the sole jurisdiction, both civil and criminal, of the territory within two