previous next

A report of the voyage and successe thereof, attempted in the yeere of our Lord 1583 by sir Humfrey Gilbert knight, with other gentlemen assisting him in that action, intended to discover and to plant Christian inhabitants in place convenient, upon those large and ample countreys extended Northward from the cape of Florida , lying under very temperate Climes, esteemed fertile and rich in Minerals, yet not in the actuall possession of any Christian prince, written by M. Edward Haie gentleman, and principall actour in the same voyage, who alone continued unto the end, and by Gods speciall assistance returned home with his retinue safe and entire.


MANY voyages have bene pretended, yet hitherto never any thorowly accomplished by our nation of exact discovery into the bowels of those maine, ample and vast countreys, extended infinitely into the North from 30 degrees, or rather from 25 degrees of Septentrionall latitude, neither hath a right way bene taken of planting a Christian habitation and regiment upon the same, as well may appeare both by the little we yet do actually possesse therein, & by our ignorance of the riches and secrets within those lands, which unto this day we know chiefly by the travell and report of other nations, and most of the French, who albeit they can not challenge such right and interest unto the sayd countreys as we, neither these many yeeres have had opportunity nor meanes so great to discover and to plant (being vexed with the calamities of intestine warres) as we have had by the inestimable benefit of our long and happy peace: yet have they both waies performed more, and had long since attained a sure possession and setled government of many provinces in those Northerly parts of America , if their many attempts into those forren and remote lands had not bene impeached by their garboils at home.

The first discovery of these coasts (never heard of before) was well begun by John Cabot the father, and Sebastian his sonne, an Englishman borne, who were the first finders out of all that great tract of land stretching from the cape of Florida unto those Islands which we now call the Newfoundland : all which they brought and annexed unto the crowne of England . Since when, if with like diligence the search of inland countreys had bene followed, as the discovery upon the coast, and outparts therof was performed by those two men: no doubt her Majesties territories and revenue had bene mightily inlarged and advanced by this day. And which is more; the seed of Christian religion had bene sowed amongst those pagans, which by this time might have brought foorth a most plentifull harvest and copious congregation of Christians; which must be the chiefe intent of such as shall make any attempt that way: or els whatsoever is builded upon other foundation shall never obtaine happy successe nor continuance.

And although we can not precisely judge (which onely belongeth to God) what have bene the humours of men stirred up to great attempts of discovering and planting in those remote countreys, yet the events do shew that either Gods cause hath not bene chiefly preferred by them, or els God hath not permitted so abundant grace as the light of his word and knowledge of him to be yet revealed unto those infidels before the appointed time.

But most assuredly, the only cause of religion hitherto hath kept backe, and will also bring forward at the time assigned by God, an effectuall and compleat discovery & possession by Christians both of those ample countreys and the riches within them hitherto concealed: whereof notwithstanding God in his wisdome hath permitted to be revealed from time to time a certaine obscure and misty knowledge, by little and little to allure the mindes of men that way (which els will be dull enough in the zeale of his cause) and thereby to prepare us unto a readinesse for the execution of his will against the due time ordeined, of calling those pagans unto Christianity.

In the meane while, it behooveth every man of great calling, in whom Is any instinct of inclination unto this attempt, to examine his owne motions: which if the same proceed of ambition or avarice, he may assure himselfe it commeth not of God, and therefore can not have confidence of Gods protection and assistance against the violence (els irresistable) both of sea, and infinite perils upon the land; whom God yet may use an instrument to further his cause and glory some way, but not to build upon so bad a foundation.

Otherwise, if his motives be derived from a vertuous & heroycall minde, preferring chiefly the honour of God, compassion of poore infidels captived by the devill, tyrannizing in most woonderfull and dreadfull maner over their bodies and soules; advancement of his honest and well disposed countreymen, willing to accompany him in such honourable actions; reliefe of sundry people within this realme distressed: all these be honorable purposes, imitating the nature of the munificent God, wherwith he is well pleased, who will assist such an actour beyond expectation of man. And the same, who feeleth this inclination in himselfe, by all likelihood may hope, or rather confidently repose in the preordinance of God, that in this last age of the world (or likely never) the time is compleat of receiving also these Gentiles into his mercy, and that God will raise him an instrument to effect the same: it seeming probable by event of precedent attempts made by the Spanyards and French sundry times, that the countreys lying North of Florida, God hath reserved the same to be reduced unto Christian civility by the English nation. For not long after that Christopher Columbus had discovered the Islands and continent of the West Indies for Spaine, John and Sebastian Cabot made discovery also of the rest from Florida Northwards to the behoofe of England .

And whensoever afterwards the Spanyards (very prosperous in all their Southerne discoveries) did attempt any thing into Florida and those regions inclining towards the North, they proved most unhappy, and were at length discouraged utterly by the hard and lamentable successe of many both religious and valiant in armes, endevouring to bring those Northerly regions also under the Spanish jurisdiction; as if God had prescribed limits unto the Spanish nation which they might not exceed: as by their owne gests recorded may be aptly gathered.

The French, as they can pretend lesse title unto these Northerne parts then the Spanyard, by how much the Spanyard made the first discovery of the same continent so far Northward as unto Florida , and the French did but review that before discovered by the English nation, usurping upon our right, and imposing names upon countreys, rivers, bayes, capes, or headlands, as if they had bene the first finders of those coasts; which injury we offered not unto the Spanyards, but left off to discover when we approched the Spanish limits: even so God hath not hitherto permitted them to establish a possession permanent upon anothers right, notwithstanding their manifolde attempts, in which the issue hath bene no lesse tragicall then that of the Spanyards, as by their owne reports is extant.

Then seeing the English nation onely hath right unto these countreys of America from the cape of Florida Northward by the privilege of first discovery, unto which Cabot was authorised by regall authority, and set forth by the expense of our late famous king Henry the seventh : which right also seemeth strongly defended on our behalfe by the powerfull hand of almighty God, withstanding the enterprises of other nations: it may greatly incourage us upon so just ground, as is our right, and upon so sacred an intent, as to plant religion (our right and intent being meet foundations for the same) to prosecute effectually the full possession of those so ample and pleasant countreys apperteining unto the crowne of England : the same (as is to be conjectured by infallible arguments of the worlds end approching) being now arrived unto the time by God prescribed of their vocation, if ever their calling unto the knowledge of God may be expected. Which also is very probable by the revolution and course of Gods word and religion, which from the beginning hath moved from the East, towards, & at last unto the West, where it is like to end, unlesse the same begin againe where it did in the East, which were to expect a like world againe. But we are assured of the contrary by the prophesie of Christ, whereby we gather, that after his word preached thorowout the world shalbe the end. And as the Gospel when it descended Westward began in the South, and afterward spread into the North of Europe: even so, as the same hath begunne in the South countreys of America , no lesse hope may be gathered that it will also spread into the North.

These considerations may helpe to suppresse all dreads rising of hard events in attempts made this way by other nations, as also of the heavy successe and issue in the late enterprise made by a worthy gentleman our countryman sir Humfrey Gilbert knight, who was the first of our nation that caried people to erect an habitation and government in those Northerly countreys of America . About which, albeit he had consumed much substance, and lost his life at last, his people also perishing for the most part: yet the mystery thereof we must leave unto God, and judge charitably both of the cause (which was just in all pretence) and of the person, who was very zealous in prosecuting the same, deserving honourable remembrance for his good minde, and expense of life in so vertuous an enterprise. Whereby neverthelesse, least any man should be dismayd by example of other folks calamity, and misdeeme that God doth resist all attempts intended that way: I thought good, so farre as my selfe was an eye witnesse, to deliver the circumstance and maner of our proceedings in that action: in which the gentleman was so infortunately incumbred with wants, and woorse matched with many ill disposed people, that his rare judgement and regiment premeditated for those affaires, was subjected to tolerate abuses, & in sundry extremities to holde on a course, more to upholde credit, then likely in his owne conceit happily to succeed.

The issue of such actions, being alwayes miserable, not guided by God, who abhorreth confusion and disorder, hath left this for admonition (being the first attempt by our nation to plant) unto such as shall take the same cause in hand hereafter not to be discouraged from it: but to make men well advised how they handle his so high and excellent matters, as the cariage is of his word into those very mighty and vast countreys. An action doubtlesse not to be intermedled with base purposes; as many have made the same but a colour to shadow actions otherwise scarse justifiable: which doth excite Gods heavy judgements in the end, to the terrifying of weake mindes from the cause, without pondering his just proceedings: and doth also incense forren princes against our attempts how just soever, who can not but deeme the sequele very dangerous unto their state (if in those parts we should grow to strength) seeing the very beginnings are entred with spoile.

And with this admonition denounced upon zeale towards Gods cause, also towards those in whom appeareth disposition honourable unto this action of planting Christian people and religion in those remote and barbarous nations of America (unto whom I wish all happinesse) I will now proceed to make relation briefly, yet particularly, of our voyage undertaken with sir Humfrey Gilbert, begun, continued, and ended adversly.

When first Sir Humfrey Gilbert undertooke the Westerne discovery of America , and had procured from her Majesty a very large commission to inhabit & possesse at his choice all remote and heathen lands not in the actuall possession of any Christian prince, the same commission exemplified with many privileges, such as in his discretion he might demand, very many gentlemen of good estimation drew unto him, to associate him in so commendable an enterprise, so that the preparation was expected to grow unto a puissant fleet, able to encounter a kings power by sea: neverthelesse, amongst a multitude of voluntary men, their dispositions were divers, which bred a jarre, and made a division in the end, to the confusion of that attempt even before the same was begun. And when the shipping was in a maner prepared, & men ready upon the coast to go aboord: at that time some brake consort, and followed courses degenerating from the voyage before pretended: Others failed of their promises contracted, and the greater number were dispersed, leaving the Generall with few of his assured friends, with whom he adventured to sea: where having tasted of no lesse misfortune, he was shortly driven to retire home with the losse of a tall ship, and (more to his griefe) of a valiant gentleman Miles Morgan.

Having buried onely in a preparation a great masse of substance, wherby his estate was impaired, his minde yet not dismaid, he continued his former designment & purpose to revive this enterprise, good occasion serving. Upon which determination standing long, without meanes to satisfy his desire; at last he granted certaine assignments out of his commission to sundry persons of meane ability, desiring the privilege of his grant, to plant & fortifie in the North parts of America about the river of Canada , to whom if God gave good successe in the North parts (where then no matter of moment was expected) the same (he thought) would greatly advance the hope of the South, & be a furtherance unto his determination that way. And the worst that might happen in that course might be excused without prejudice unto him by the former supposition, that those North regions were of no regard: but chiefly a possession taken in any parcell of those heathen countreys, by vertue of his grant, did invest him of territories extending every way two hundred leagues: which induced sir Humfry Gilbert to make those assignments, desiring greatly their expedition, because his commission did expire after six yeres, if in that space he had not gotten actuall possession.

Time went away without any thing done by his assignes: insomuch that at last he must resolve himselfe to take a voyage in person, for more assurance to keepe his patent in force, which then almost was expired, or within two yeres.

In furtherance of his determination, amongst others, sir George Peckam knight shewed himselfe very zealous to the action, greatly aiding him both by his advice & in the charge. Other gentlemen to their ability joyned unto him, resolving to adventure their substance & lives in the same cause. Who beginning their preparation from that time, both of shipping, munition, victual, men, and things requisit, some of them continued the charge two yeres compleat without intermission. Such were the difficulties and crosse accidents opposing these proceedings, which tooke not end in lesse then two yeres: many of which circumstances I will omit.

The last place of our assembly, before we left the coast of England , was in Causet bay neere unto Plimmouth: then resolved to put unto the sea with shipping and provision, such as we had, before our store yet remaining, but chiefly the time and season of the yeere, were too farre spent. Neverthelesse it seemed first very doubtfull by what way to shape our course, and to begin our intended discovery, either from the South Northward, or from the North Southward.

The first, that is, beginning South, without all controversie was the likeliest, wherein we were assured to have commodity of the current, which from the cape of Florida setteth Northward, and would have furthered greatly our navigation, discovering from the foresayd cape along towards cape Briton, and all those lands lying to the North.

Also the yere being farre spent, and arrived to the moneth of June, we were not to spend time in Northerly courses, where we should be surprised with timely Winter, but to covet the south, which we had space enough then to have attained; and there might with lesse detriment have wintred that season, being more milde and short in the South then in the North where winter is both long and rigorous.

These and other like reasons alleged in favour of the Southerne course first to be taken, to the contrary was inferred: that forasmuch as both our victuals, and many other needfull provisions were diminished and left insufficient for so long a voyage, and for the wintering of so many men, we ought to shape a course most likely to minister supply; and that was to take the Newfoundland in our way, which was but seven hundred leagues from our English coast. Where being usually at that time of the yere, and untill the fine of August, a multitude of ships repairing thither for fish, we should be relieved abundantly with many necessaries, which after the fishing ended, they might well spare, and freely impart unto us.

Not staying long upon that Newland coast, we might proceed Southward, and follow still the Sunne, untill we arrived at places more temperate to our content.

By which reasons we were the rather induced to follow this Northerly course, obeying unto necessity, which must be supplied. Otherwise, we doubted that sudden approch of Winter, bringing with it continuall fogge, and thicke mists, tempest and rage of weather; also contrariety of currents descending from the cape of Florida unto cape Briton and cape Rase, would fall out to be great and irresistable impediments unto our further proceeding for that yeere, and compell us to Winter in those North and colde regions.

Wherefore suppressing all objections to the contrary, we resolved to begin our course Northward, and to follow directly as we might, the trade way unto Newfoundland : from whence after our refreshing and reparation of wants, we intended without delay (by Gods permission) to proceed into the South, not omitting any river or bay which in all that large tract of land appeared to our view worthy of search. Immediatly we agreed upon the maner of our course and orders to be observed in our voyage; which were delivered in writing unto the captaines and masters of every ship a copy in maner following.

Every shippe had delivered two bullets or scrowles, the one sealed up in waxe, the other left open: in both which were included severall watch-words. That open, serving upon our owne coast or the coast of Ireland : the other sealed, was promised on all hands not to be broken up untill we should be cleere of the Irish coast; which from thencefoorth did serve untill we arrived and met altogether in such harbors of the Newfoundland as were agreed for our Rendez vous. The sayd watch-words being requisite to know our consorts whensoever by night, either by fortune of weather, our fleet dispersed should come together againe; or one should hale another; or if by ill watch and steerage one ship should chance to fall aboord of another in the darke.

The reason of the bullet sealed was to keepe secret that watch-word while we were upon our owne coast, lest any of the company stealing from the fleet might bewray the same: which knowen to an enemy, he might boord us by night without mistrust, having our owne watch-word.


Orders agreed upon by the Captaines and Masters to be observed by the fleet of Sir Humfrey Gilbert.

  1. FIRST the Admirall to cary his flag by day, and his light by night.
  2. 2 Item, if the Admirall shall shorten his saile by night, then to shew two lights untill he be answered againe by every ship shewing one light for a short time.
  3. 3 Item, if the Admirall after his shortening of saile, as aforesayd, shall make more saile againe: then he to shew three lights one above another.
  4. 4 Item, if the Admirall shall happen to hull in the night, then to make a wavering light over his other light, wavering the light upon a pole.
  5. 5 Item, if the fleet should happen to be scattered by weather, or other mishap, then so soone as one shall descry another, to hoise both toppe sailes twise, if the weather will serve, and to strike them twise againe; but if the weather serve not, then to hoise the maine top saile twise, and forthwith to strike it twise againe.
  6. 6 Item, if it shall happen a great fogge to fall, then presently every shippe to beare up with the admirall, if there be winde: but if it be a calme, then every ship to hull, and so to lie at hull till it be cleere. And if the fogge do continue long, then the Admirall to shoot off two pieces every evening, and every ship to answere it with one shot: and every man bearing to the ship, that is to leeward so neere as he may.
  7. 7 Item, every master to give charge unto the watch to looke out well, for laying aboord one of another in the night, and in fogges.
  8. 8 Item, every evening every ship to haile the admirall, and so to fall asterne him, sailing thorow the Ocean: and being on the coast, every ship to haile him both morning and evening.
  9. 9 Item, if any ship be in danger any way, by leake or otherwise, then she to shoot off a piece, and presently to hang out one light, whereupon every man to beare towards her, answering her with one light for a short time, and so to put it out againe; thereby to give knowledge that they have seene her token.
  10. 10 Item, whensoever the Admirall shall hang out her ensigne in the maine shrowds, then every man to come aboord her, as a token of counsell.
  11. 11 Item, if there happen any storme or contrary winde to the fleet after the discovery, whereby they are separated: then every ship to repaire unto their last good port, there to meet againe.

Our course agreed upon.

THE course first to be taken for the discovery is to beare directly to cape Rase, the most Southerly cape of Newfound land; and there to harbour our selves either in Rogneux or Fermous, being the first places appointed for our Rendez vous, and the next harbours unto the Northward of cape Rase: and therefore every ship separated from the fleet to repaire to that place so fast as God shall permit, whether you shall fall to the Southward or to the Northward of it, and there to stay for the meeting of the whole fleet the space of ten dayes: and when you shall depart, to leave marks.


A direction of our course unto the Newfound land.

BEGINNING our course from Silley, the neerest is by Westsouthwest (if the winde serve) untill such time as we have brought our selves in the latitude of 43 or 44 degrees, because the Ocean is subject much to Southerly windes in June and July. Then to take traverse from 45 to 47 degrees of latitude, if we be inforced by contrary windes: and not to go to the Northward of the height of 47 degrees of Septentrionall latitude by no meanes: if God shall not inforce the contrary; but to do your indevour to keepe in the height of 46 degrees, so nere as you can possibly, because cape Rase lieth about that height.


Notes.

IF by contrary windes we be driven backe upon the coast of England , then to repaire unto Silley for a place of our assembly or meeting.

If we be driven backe by contrary winds that we can not passe the coast of Ireland , then the place of our assembly to be at Beare haven or Baltimore haven.

If we shall not happen to meete at cape Rase, then the place of Rendez vous to be at cape Briton, or the neerest harbour unto the Westward of cape Briton.

If by meanes of other shipping we may not safely stay there, then to rest at the very next safe port to the Westward; every ship leaving their marks behinde them for the more certainty of the after commers to know where to finde them.

The marks that every man ought to leave in such a case, were of the Generals private device written by himselfe, sealed also in close waxe, and delivered unto every shippe one scroule, which was not to be opened untill occasion required, whereby every man was certified what to leave for instruction of after commers: that every of us comming into any harbour or river might know who had bene there, or whether any were still there up higher into the river, or departed, and which way.


Orders thus determined, and promises mutually given to be observed, every man withdrew himselfe unto his charge, the ankers being already weyed, and our shippes under saile, having a soft gale of winde, we began our voyage upon Tuesday the eleventh day of June, in the yere of our Lord 1583, having in our fleet (at our departure from Causet bay) these shippes, whose names and burthens, with the names of the captaines and masters of them, I have also inserted, as followeth:

1 The Delight alias The George, of burthen 120 tunnes, was Admirall: in which went the Generall, and William Winter captaine in her and part owner, and Richard Clearke master.

2 The Barke Raleigh set forth by M. Walter Raleigh, of the burthen of 200 tunnes, was then Vice-admirall: in which went M. Butler captaine, and Robert Davis, of Bristoll master.

3 The Golden hinde, of burthen 40 tunnes, was then Reare-admirall: in which went Edward Hayes captaine and owner, and William Cox of Limehouse master.

4 The Swallow, of burthen 40 tunnes: in her was captaine Maurice Browne.

5 The Squirrill, of burthen 10 tunnes: in which went captaine William Andrewes, and one Cade master.

We were in number in all about 260 men: among whom we had of every faculty good choice, as Shipwrights, Masons, Carpenters, Smithes, and such like, requisite to such an action: also Minerall men and Refiners. Besides, for solace of our people, and allurement of the Savages, we were provided of Musike in good variety: not omitting the least toyes, as Morris dancers, Hobby horsse, and Maylike conceits to delight the Savage people, whom we intended to winne by all faire meanes possible. And to that end we were indifferently furnished of all petty haberdasherie wares to barter with those simple people.

In this maner we set forward, departing (as hath bene said) out of Causon bay the eleventh day of June being Tuesday, the weather and winde faire and good all day, but a great storme of thunder and winde fell the same night.

Thursday following, when we hailed one another in the evening (according to the order before specified) they signified unto us out of the Vizadmirall, that both the Captaine, and very many of the men were fallen sicke. And about midnight the Vizeadmirall forsooke us, notwithstanding we had the winde East, faire and good. But it was after credibly reported, that they were infected with a contagious sicknesse, and arrived greatly distressed at Plimmoth: the reason I could never understand. Sure I am, no cost was spared by their owner Master Raleigh in setting them forth: Therefore I leave it unto God.

By this time we were in 48 degrees of latitude, not a little grieved with the losse of the most puissant ship in our fleete: after whose departure, the Golden Hind succeeded in the place of Vizadmirall, and remooved her flagge from the mizon unto the foretop.

From Saturday the 15 of June untill the 28, which was upon a Friday, we never had faire day without fogge or raine, and windes bad, much to the West northwest, whereby we were driven Southward unto 41 degrees scarse.

About this time of the yere the winds are commonly West towards the Newfound land, keeping ordinarily within two points of West to the South or to the North, whereby the course thither falleth out to be long and tedious after June, which in March, Apriell & May, hath bene performed out of England in 22 dayes and lesse. We had winde alwayes so scant from West northwest, and from West southwest againe, that our traverse was great, running South unto 41 degrees almost, and afterward North into 51 degrees.

Also we were incombred with much fogge and mists in maner palpable, in which we could not keepe so well together, but were dissevered, losing the companie of the Swallow and the Squirrill upon the 20. day of July, whom we met againe at severall places upon the Newfound land coast the third of August, as shalbe declared in place convenient.

Saturday the 27 of July, we might descry not farre from us, as it were mountaines of yce driven upon the sea, being then in 50 degrees, which were caried Southward to the weather of us: whereby may be conjectured that some current doth set that way from the North.

Before we come to Newfound land about 50 leagues on this side, we passe the banke, which are high grounds rising within the sea and under water, yet deepe enough and without danger, being commonly not lesse then 25 and 30 fadome water upon them: the same (as it were some vaine of mountaines within the sea) doe runne along, and from the Newfound land, beginning Northward about 52 or 53 degrees of latitude, & do extend into the South infinitly. The bredth of this banke is somewhere more, and somewhere lesse: but we found the same about 10 leagues over, having sounded both on this side thereof, and the other toward Newfound land, but found no ground with almost 200 fadome of line, both before & after we had passed the banke. The Portugals, and French chiefly, have a notable trade of fishing upon this banke, where are sometimes an hundred or more sailes of ships: who commonly beginne the fishing in Apriell, and have ended by July. That fish is large, always wet, having no land neere to drie, and is called Corre fish.

During the time of fishing, a man shall know without sounding when he is upon the banke, by the incredible multitude of sea foule hovering over the same, to pray upon the offalles & garbish of fish throwen out by fishermen, and floting upon the sea.

Upon Tuesday the 11 of June, we forsooke the coast of England . So againe Tuesday the 30 of July (seven weekes after) we got sight of land, being immediatly embayed in the Grand bay, or some other great bay: the certainty whereof we could not judge, so great hase and fogge did hang upon the coast, as neither we might discerne the land well, nor take the sunnes height. But by our best computation we were then in the 51 degrees of latitude.

Forsaking this bay and uncomfortable coast (nothing appearing unto us but hideous rockes and mountaines, bare of trees, and voide of any greene herbe) we followed the coast to the South, with weather faire and cleare.

We had sight of an Iland named Penguin, of a foule there breeding in abundance, almost incredible, which cannot flie, their wings not able to carry their body, being very large (not much lesse then a goose) and exceeding fat: which the French men use to take without difficulty upon that Iland, and to barrell them up with salt. But for lingering of time we had made us there the like provision.

Trending this coast, we came to the Iland called Baccalaos, being not past two leagues from the maine: to the South therof lieth Cape S. Francis, 5 leagues distant from Baccalaos, between which goeth in a great bay, by the vulgar sort called the bay of Conception. Here we met with the Swallow againe, whom we had lost in the fogge, and all her men altered into other apparell: wherof it seemed their store was so amended, that for joy and congratulation of our meeting, they spared not to cast up into the aire and overboord, their caps & hats in good plenty. The Captaine albeit himselfe was very honest and religious, yet was he not appointed of men to his humor and desert: who for the most part were such as had bene by us surprised upon the narrow seas of England , being pirats and had taken at that instant certaine Frenchmen laden, one barke with wines, and another with salt. Both which we rescued, & tooke the man of warre with all her men, which was the same ship now called the Swallow, following still their kind so oft, as (being separated from the Generall) they found opportunitie to robbe and spoile. And because Gods justice did follow the same company, even to destruction, and to the overthrow also of the Captaine (though not consenting to their misdemeanor) I will not conceale any thing that maketh to the manifestation and approbation of his judgements, for examples of others, perswaded that God more sharpely tooke revenge upon them, and hath tolerated longer as great outrage in others: by how much these went under protection of his cause and religion, which was then pretended.

Therefore upon further enquiry it was knowen, how this company met with a barke returning home after the fishing with his fraight: and because the men in the Swallow were very neere scanted of victuall, and chiefly of apparell, doubtful withall where or when to find and meete with their Admiral, they besought the captaine they might go aboord this Newlander, only to borrow what might be spared, the rather because the same was bound homeward. Leave given, not without charge to deale favorably, they came aboord the fisherman, whom they rifled of tackle, sailes, cables, victuals, & the men of their apparell: not sparing by torture (winding cords about their heads) to draw out else what they thought good. This done with expedition (like men skilfull in such mischiefe) as they tooke their cocke boate to go aboord their own ship, it was overwhelmed in the sea, and certaine of these men there drowned: the rest were preserved even by those silly soules whom they had before spoyled, who saved and delivered them aboord the Swallow. What became afterward of the poore Newlander, perhaps destitute of sayles and furniture sufficient to carry them home (whither they had not lesse to runne then 700 leagues) God alone knoweth, who tooke vengeance not long after of the rest that escaped at this instant: to reveale the fact, and justifie to the world Gods judgements inflicted upon them, as shalbe declared in place convenient.

Thus after we had met with the Swallow, we held on our course Southward, untill we came against the harbor called S. John, about 5 leagues from the former Cape of S. Francis: where before the entrance into the harbor, we found also the Frigate or Squirrill lying at anker. Whom the English marchants (that were & alwaies be Admirals by turnes interchangeably over the fleetes of fishermen within the same harbor) would not permit to enter into the harbor. Glad of so happy meeting both of the Swallow and Frigate in one day (being Saturday the 3. of August) we made readie our fights, & prepared to enter the harbor, any resistance to the contrarie notwithstanding, there being within of all nations, to the number of 36 sailes. But first the Generall dispatched a boat to give them knowledge of his comming for no ill intent, having Commission from her Majestie for his voiage he had in hand. And immediatly we followed with a slacke gale, and in the very entrance (which is but narrow, not above 2 buts length) the Admirall fell upon a rocke on the larboord side by great oversight, in that the weather was faire, the rocke much above water fast by the shore, where neither went any sea gate. But we found such readinesse in the English Marchants to helpe us in that danger, that without delay there were brought a number of boates, which towed off the ship, and cleared her of danger.

Having taken place convenient in the road, we let fall ankers, the Captaines and Masters repairing aboord our Admirall: whither also came immediatly the Masters and owners of the fishing fleete of Englishmen, to understand the Generals intent and cause of our arrivall there. They were all satisfied when the General had shewed his commission, and purpose to take possession of those lands to the behalfe of the crowne of England , and the advancement of Christian religion in those Paganish regions, requiring but their lawfull ayde for repayring of his fleete, and supply of some necessaries, so farre as conveniently might be afforded him, both out of that and other habors adjoyning. In lieu whereof, he made offer to gratifie them, with any favour and priviledge, which upon their better advise they should demand, the like being not to bee obteyned hereafter for greater price. So craving expedition of his demand, minding to proceede further South without long detention in those partes, he dismissed them, after promise given of their best indevour to satisfie speedily his so reasonable request. The marchants with their Masters departed, they caused foorthwith to be discharged all the great Ordinance of their fleete in token of our welcome.

It was further determined that every ship of our fleete should deliver unto the marchants and Masters of that harbour a note of all their wants: which done, the ships aswell English as strangers, were taxed at an easie rate to make supply. And besides, Commissioners were appointed, part of our owne companie and part of theirs, to go into other harbours adjoyning (for our English marchants command all there) to leavie our provision: whereunto the Portugals (above other nations) did most willingly and liberally contribute. Insomuch as we were presented (above our allowance) with wines, marmalads, most fine ruske or bisket, sweet oyles and sundry delicacies. Also we wanted not of fresh salmons, trouts, lobsters and other fresh fish brought daily unto us. Moreover as the maner is in their fishing, every weeke to choose their Admirall a new, or rather they succeede in orderly course, and have weekely their Admirals feast solemnized: even so the General, Captaines and masters of our fleete were continually invited and feasted. To grow short, in our abundance at home, the intertainment had bene delightfull, but after our wants and tedious passage through the Ocean, it seemed more acceptable and of greater contentation, by how much the same was unexpected in that desolate corner of the world: where at other times of the yeare, wilde beasts and birds have only the fruition of all those countries, which now seemed a place very populous and much frequented.

The next morning being Sunday and the 4 of August, the Generall and his company were brought on land by English marchants, who shewed unto us their accustomed walks unto a place they call the Garden. But nothing appeared more then Nature it selfe without art: who confusedly hath brought foorth roses abundantly, wilde, but odoriferous, and to sense very comfortable. Also the like plentie of raspis berries, which doe grow in every place.

Munday following, the General had his tent set up, who being accompanied with his own followers, sommoned the marchants and masters, both English and strangers to be present at his taking possession of those Countries. Before whom openly was read & interpreted unto the strangers his Commission: by vertue whereof he tooke possession in the same harbour of S. John, and 200 leagues every way, invested the Queenes Majestie with the title and dignitie thereof, had delivered unto him (after the custome of England ) a rod & a turffe of the same soile, entring possession also for him, his heires and assignes for ever: And signified unto al men, that from that time forward, they should take the same land as a territorie appertaining to the Queene of England, and himselfe authorised under her Majestie to possesse and enjoy it. And to ordaine lawes for the governement thereof, agreeable (so neere as conveniently might be) unto the lawes of England : under which all people comming thither hereafter, either to inhabite, or by way of traffique, should be subjected and governed. And especially at the same time for a beginning, he proposed & delivered three lawes to be in force immediatly. That is to say: the first for Religion, which in publique exercise should be according to the Church of England. The 2. for maintenance of her Majesties right and possession of those territories, against which if any thing were attempted prejudiciall, the partie or parties offending should be adjudged and executed as in case of high treason, according to the lawes of England . The 3. if any person should utter words sounding to the dishonour of her Majestie, he should loose his eares, and have his ship and goods confiscate.

These contents published, obedience was promised by generall voyce and consent of the multitude aswell of Englishmen as strangers, praying for continuance of this possession and governement begun. After this, the assembly was dismissed. And afterward were erected not farre from that place the Armes of England ingraven in lead, and infixed upon a pillar of wood. Yet further and actually to establish this possession taken in the right of her Majestie, and to the behoofe of Sir Humfrey Gilbert knight, his heires and assignes for ever: the Generall granted in fee farme divers parcels of land lying by the water side, both in this harbor of S. John, and elsewhere, which was to the owners a great commoditie, being thereby assured (by their proper inheritance) of grounds convenient to dresse and to drie their fish, whereof many times before they did faile, being prevented by them that came first into the harbor. For which grounds they did covenant to pay a certaine rent and service unto sir Humfrey Gilbert, his heires or assignes for ever, and yeerely to maintaine possession of the same, by themselves or their assignes.

Now remained only to take in provision granted, according as every shippe was taxed, which did fish upon the coast adjoyning. In the meane while, the Generall appointed men unto their charge: some to repaire and trim the ships, others to attend in gathering togither our supply and provisions: others to search the commodities and singularities of the countrey, to be found by sea or land, and to make relation unto the Generall what eyther themselves could knowe by their owne travaile and experience, or by good intelligence of English men or strangers, who had longest frequented the same coast. Also some observed the elevation of the pole, and drewe plats of the countrey exactly graded. And by that I could gather by each mans severall relation, I have drawen a briefe description of the Newfound land, with the commodities by sea or lande alreadie made, and such also as are in possibilitie and great likelihood to be made: Neverthelesse the Cardes and plats that were drawing, with the due gradation of the harbors, bayes, and capes, did perish with the Admirall: wherefore in the description following, I must omit the particulars of such things.


A briefe relation of the New found lande, and the commodities thereof.

THAT which we doe call the Newfound land, and the Frenchmen Bacalaos, is an Iland, or rather (after the opinion of some) it consisteth of sundry Ilands and broken lands, situate in the North regions of America , upon the gulfe and entrance of the great river called S. Laurence in Canada . Into the which, navigation may be made both on the South and North side of this Iland. The land lyeth South and North, containing in length betweene three & 400 miles, accounting from cape Race (which is in 46 degrees 25 minuts) unto the Grand bay in 52 degrees of Septentrionall latitude. The Iland round about hath very many goodly bayes and harbors, safe roads for ships, the like not to be found in any part of the knowen world.

The common opinion that is had of intemperature & extreme cold that should be in this countrey, as of some part it may be verified, namely the North, where I grant it is more colde then in countries of Europe, which are under the same elevation: even so it cannot stand with reason and nature of the clime, that the South parts should be so intemperate as the brute hath gone. For as the same doe lie under the climats of Briton, Anjou , Poictou in France, betweene 46 and 49 degrees, so can they not so much differ from the temperature of those countries: unlesse upon the outcoast lying open unto the Ocean and sharpe windes, it must in deede be subject to more colde, then further within the land, where the mountaines are interposed, as walles and bulwarkes, to defend and to resist the asperitie and rigor of the sea and weather. Some hold opinion, that the Newfound land might be the more subject to cold, by how much it lyeth high and neere unto the middle region. I grant that not in Newfound land alone, but in Germany , Italy and Afrike, even under the Equinoctiall line, the mountaines are extreme cold, and seeldome uncovered of snow, in their culme and highest tops, which commeth to passe by the same reason that they are extended towards the middle region: yet in the countries lying beneth them, it is found quite contrary. Even so all hils having their discents, the valleis also and low grounds must be likewise hot or temperate, as the clime doeth give in Newfound land: though I am of opinion that the Sunnes reflection is much cooled, and cannot be so forcible in the Newfound land, nor generally throughout America , as in Europe or Afrike: by how much the Sunne in his diurnall course from East to West, passeth over (for the most part) dry land and sandy countries, before he arriveth at the West of Europe or Afrike, whereby his motion increaseth heate, with little or no qualification by moyst vapours. Where, on the contrarie he passeth from Europe and Afrike unto America over the Ocean, from whence it draweth and carieth with him abundance of moyst vapours, which doe qualifie and infeeble greatly the Sunnes reverberation upon this countrey chiefly of Newfound land, being so much to the Northward. Neverthelesse (as I sayd before) the cold cannot be so intollerable under the latitude of 46 47 and 48 (especiall within land) that it should be unhabitable, as some doe suppose, seeing also there are very many people more to the North by a great deale. And in these South parts there be certaine beastes, Ounces or Leopards, and birdes in like maner which in the Sommer we have seene, not heard of in countries of extreme and vehement coldnesse. Besides, as in the monethes of June, July, August and September, the heate is somewhat more then in England at those seasons: so men remaining upon the South parts neere unto Cape Rece, untill after Hollandtide, have not found the cold so extreme, nor much differing from the temperature of England . Those which have arrived there after November and December, have found the snow exceeding deepe, whereat no marvaile, considering the ground upon the coast, is rough and uneven, and the snow is driven into the places most declyning as the like is to be seene with us. The like depth of snow happily shall not be found within land upon the playner countries, which also are defended by the mountaines, breaking off the violence of winds and weather. But admitting extraordinary cold in those South parts, above that with us here: it can not be so great as in Swedland, much lesse in Moscovia or Russia : yet are the same countries very populous, and the rigor of cold is dispensed with by the commoditie of Stoves, warme clothing, meats and drinkes: all which neede not to be wanting in the Newfound land, if we had intent there to inhabite.

In the South parts we found no inhabitants, which by all likelihood have abandoned those coastes, the same being so much frequented by Christians: But in the North are savages altogether harmelesse. Touching the commodities of this countrie, serving either for sustentation of inhabitants, or for maintenance of traffique, there are & may be made divers: so yt it seemeth Nature hath recompenced that only defect and incommoditie of some sharpe cold, by many benefits: viz. With incredible quantitie, and no lesse varietie of kindes of fish in the sea and fresh waters, as Trouts, Salmons and other fish to us unknowen: Also Cod, which alone draweth many nations thither, and is become the most famous fishing of the world. Abundance of Whales, for which also is a very great trade in the bayes of Placentia & the Grand bay, where is made Traine oiles of the Whale: Herring the largest that have bene heard of, and exceeding the Malstrond herring of Norway : but hitherto was never benefit taken of the herring fishing. There are sundry other fish very delicate, namely the Bonito , Lobsters, Turbut, with others infinite not sought after: Oysters having pearle but not orient in colour: I tooke it by reason they were not gathered in season.

Concerning the inland commodities, aswel to be drawen from this land, as from the exceeding large countries adjoyning: there is nothing which our East and Northerly countries of Europe doe yeelde, but the like also may be made in them as plentifully by time and industrie: Namely, rosen, pitch, tarre, sopeashes, dealboord, mastes for ships, hides, furres, flaxe, hempe, corne, cables, cordage, linnen-cloth, mettals and many more. All which the countries will aford, and the soyle is apt to yeelde.

The trees for the most in those South parts, are Firretrees, Pine and Cypresse, all yeelding Gumme and Turpentine.

Cherrie trees bearing fruit no bigger than a small pease. Also peare trees, but fruitlesse. Other trees of some sorts to us unknowen.

The soyle along the coast is not deepe of earth, bringing foorth abundantly peason small, yet good feeding for cattel. Roses passing sweet, like unto our muske roses in forme, raspases, a berry which we call Hurts, good and holesome to eat. The grasse and herbe doth fat sheepe in very short space, proved by English marchants which have caried sheepe thither for fresh victuall and had them raised exceeding fat in lesse then three weekes. Peason which our countreymen have sowen in the time of May, have come up faire, and bene gathered in the beginning of August, of which our Generall had a present acceptable for the rarenesse, being the first fruits comming up by art and industrie in that desolate and dishabited land.

Lakes or pooles of fresh water, both on the tops of mountaines and in the vallies. In which are said to be muskles not unlike to have pearle, which I had put in triall, if by mischance falling unto me, I had not bene letted from that and other good experiments I was minded to make.

Foule both of water and land in great plentie and diversitie. All kind of greene foule: Others as bigge as Bustards, yet not the same. A great white foule called of some a Gaunt.

Upon the land divers sorts of haukes, as faulcons, and others by report: Partridges most plentifull larger then ours, gray and white of colour, and rough footed like doves, which our men after one flight did kill with cudgels, they were so fat and unable to flie. Birds some like blackbirds, linnets, canary birds, and other very small. Beasts of sundry kindes, red deare, buffles or a beast, as it seemeth by the tract & foote very large in maner of an oxe. Beares, ounces or leopards, some greater & some lesser, wolves, foxes, which to the Northward a litle further are black, whose furre is esteemed in some Countries of Europe very rich. Otters, bevers, marternes: And in the opinion of most men that saw it, the Generall had brought unto him a Sable alive, which he sent unto his brother sir John Gilbert knight of Devonshire : but it was never delivered, as after I understood. We could not observe the hundreth part of creatures in those unhabited lands: but these mentioned may induce us to glorifie the magnificent God, who hath superabundantly replenished the earth with creatures serving for the use of man, though man hath not used a fift part of the same, which the more doth aggravate the fault and foolish slouth in many of our nation, chusing rather to live indirectly, and very miserably to live & die within this realme pestered with inhabitants, then to adventure as becommeth men, to obtaine an habitation in those remote lands, in which Nature very prodigally doth minister unto mens endevours, and for art to worke upon.

For besides these alreadie recounted and infinite moe, the mountaines generally make shew of minerall substance: Iron very common, lead, and somewhere copper. I will not averre of richer mettals: albeit by the circumstances following, more then hope may be conceived thereof.

For amongst other charges given to inquire out the singularities of this countrey, the Generall was most curious in the search of mettals, commanding the minerall man and refiner, especially to be diligent. The same was a Saxon borne, honest and religious, named Daniel. Who after search brought at first some sort of Ore, seeming rather to be yron then other mettall. The next time he found Ore, which with no small shew of contentment he delivered unto the General, using protestation, that if silver were the thing which might satisfie the Generall & his followers, there it was, advising him to seeke no further: the perill whereof he undertooke upon his life (as deare unto him as the Crowne of England unto her Majestie, that I may use his owne words) if it fell not out accordingly.

My selfe at this instant liker to die then to live, by a mischance, could not follow this confident opinion of our refiner to my owne satisfaction: but afterward demanding our Generals opinion therein, and to have some part of the Ore, he replied: Content your selfe, I have seene ynough, and were it but to satisfie my private humor, I would proceede no further. The promise unto my friends, and necessitie to bring also the South countries within compasse of my Patent neere expired, as we have alreadie done these North parts, do only perswade me further. And touching the Ore, I have sent it aboord, whereof I would have no speech to be made so long as we remaine within harbor: here being both Portugals, Biscains and Frenchmen not farre off, from whom must be kept any bruit or muttering of such matter. When we are at sea proofe shalbe made: if it be to our desire, we may returne the sooner hither againe. Whose answere I judged reasonable, and contenting me well: wherewith I will conclude this narration and description of the Newfound land, and proceede to the rest of our voyage, which ended tragically.

WHILE the better sort of us were seriously occupied in repairing our wants, and contriving of matters for the commoditie of our voyage: others of another sort & disposition were plotting of mischiefe. Some casting to steale away our shipping by night, watching oportunitie by the Generals and Captaines lying on the shore: whose conspiracies discovered, they were prevented. Others drew togither in company, and caried away out of the harbors adjoyning, a ship laden with fish, setting the poore men on shore. A great many more of our people stole into the woods to hide themselves, attending time and meanes to returne home by such shipping as daily departed from the coast. Some were sicke of fluxes, and many dead: and in briefe, by one meanes or other our company was diminished, and many by the Generall licensed to returne home. Insomuch as after we had reviewed our people, resolved to see an end of our voyage, we grewe scant of men to furnish all our shipping: it seemed good therefore unto the Generall to leave the Swallowe with such provision as might be spared for transporting home the sicke people.

The Captaine of the Delight or Admirall returned into England , in whose stead was appointed Captaine Maurice Browne, before Captaine of the Swallow: who also brought with him into the Delight all his men of the Swallow, which before have bene noted of outrage perpetrated and committed upon fishermen there met at sea.

The Generall made choise to goe in his frigate the Squirrell (whereof the Captaine also was amongst them that returned into England ) the same Frigate being most convenient to discover upon the coast, and to search into every harbor or creeke, which a great ship could not doe. Therefore the Frigate was prepared with her nettings & fights, and overcharged with bases and such small Ordinance, more to give a shew, then with judgement to foresee unto the safetie of her and the men, which afterward was an occasion also of their overthrow.

Now having made readie our shipping, that is to say, the Delight, the golden Hinde, and the Squirrell, and put aboord our provision, which was wines, bread or ruske, fish wette and drie, sweete oiles: besides many other, as marmalades, figs, lymmons barrelled, and such like: Also we had other necessary provisions for trimming our ships, nets and lines to fish withall, boates or pinnesses fit for discovery. In briefe, we were supplied of our wants commodiously, as if we had bene in a Countrey or some Citie populous and plentifull of all things.

We departed from this harbour of S. Johns upon Tuesday the twentieth of August, which we found by exact observation to be in 47 degrees 40 minutes. And the next day by night we were at Cape Race, 25 leagues from the same harborough.

This Cape lyeth South Southwest from S. Johns: it is a low land, being off from the Cape about halfe a league: within the sea riseth up a rocke against the point of the Cape, which thereby is easily knowen: It is in latitude 46 degrees 25 minutes.

Under this Cape we were becalmed a small time, during which we layd out hookes and lines to take Codde, and drew in lesse then two houres, fish so large and in such abundance, that many dayes after we fed upon no other provision.

From hence we shaped our course unto the Island of Sablon, if conveniently it would so fall out, also directly to Cape Briton.

Sablon lieth to the sea-ward of Cape Briton about 25 leagues, whither we were determined to goe upon intelligence we had of a Portugal , (during our abode in S. Johns) who was himself present, when the Portugals (above thirty yeeres past) did put into the same Island both Neat and Swine to breede, which were since exceedingly multiplied. This seemed unto us very happy tidings, to have in an Island lying so neere unto the maine, which we intended to plant upon, such store of cattell, whereby we might at all times conveniently be relieved of victuall, and served of store for breed.

In this course we trended along the coast, which from Cape Race stretcheth into the Northwest, making a bay which some called Trepassa. Then it goeth out againe toward the West, and maketh a point, which with Cape Race lieth in maner East and West. But this point inclineth to the North: to the West of which goeth in the bay of Placentia . We sent men on land to take view of the soyle along this coast, whereof they made good report, and some of them had wil to be planted there. They saw Pease growing in great abundance every where.

The distance betweene Cape Race and Cape Briton is 87 leagues. In which Navigation we spent 8 dayes, having many times the wind indifferent good: yet could we never attaine sight of any land all that time, seeing we were hindred by the current. At last we fell into such flats and dangers, that hardly any of us escaped: where neverthelesse we lost our Admiral with al the men and provision, not knowing certainly the place. Yet for inducing men of skill to make conjecture, by our course and way we held from Cape Race thither (that thereby the flats and dangers may be inserted in sea Cards, for warn ing to others that may follow the same course hereafter) I have set downe the best reckonings that were kept by expert men, William Cox Master of the Hind, and John Paul his mate, both of Limehouse .


Reckonings kept in our course from Cape Race towards Cape Briton, and the Island of Sablon, to the time and place where we lost our Admirall.

August 22. West, 14. leagues.
West and by South, 25.
Westnorthwest, 25.
Westnorthwest, 9.
Southsouthwest, 10.
Southwest, 12.
Southsouthwest, 10.
August 29. Westnorthwest, 12. Here we lost our Admiral.
Summe of these leagues, 117.


The reckoning of John Paul Masters mate from Cape Race.

August 22.West, 14. leagues.
23 Northwest and by West, 9.
24 Southwest and by South, 5.
25 West and by South, 40.
26 West and by North, 7.
27 Southwest, 3.
28 Southwest, 9.
Southwest, 7.
Westsouthwest, 7.
29 Northwest and by West, 20. Here we lost our Admirall.
Summe of all these leagues, 121.

Our course we held in clearing us of these flats was Eastsoutheast, and Southeast, and South 14 leagues with a marveilous scant winde.


The maner how our Admirall was lost.

UPON Tewsday the 27 of August, toward the evening, our Generall caused them in his frigat to sound, who found white sande at 35 fadome, being then in latitude about 44 degrees.

Wednesday toward night the wind came South, and wee bare with the land all that night, Westnorthwest, contrary to the mind of master Cox: neverthelesse wee followed the Admirall, deprived of power to prevent a mischiefe, which by no contradiction could be brought to hold other course, alleaging they could not make the ship to worke better, nor to lie otherwaies.

The evening was faire and pleasant, yet not without token of storme to ensue, and most part of this Wednesday night, like the Swanne that singeth before her death, they in the Admiral, or Delight, continued in sounding of Trumpets, with Drummes, and Fifes: also winding the Cornets, Haughtboyes : and in the end of their jolitie, left with the battell and ringing of dolefull knels.

Towards the evening also we caught in the Golden Hinde a very mighty Porpose, with a harping yron, having first striken divers of them, and brought away part of their flesh, sticking upon the yron, but could recover onely that one. These also passing through the Ocean, in heardes, did portend storme. I omit to recite frivolous reportes by them in the Frigat, of strange voyces, the same night, which scarred some from the helme.

Thursday the 29 of August, the wind rose, and blew vehemently at South and by East, bringing withal raine, and thicke mist, so that we could not see a cable length before us. And betimes in the morning we were altogether runne and folded in amongst flats and sands, amongst which we found shoale and deepe in every three or foure shippes length, after wee began to sound: but first we were upon them unawares, untill master Cox looking out, discerned (in his judgement) white cliffes, crying (land) withall, though we could not afterward descrie any land, it being very likely the breaking of the sea white, which seemed to be white cliffes, through the haze and thicke weather.

Immediatly tokens were given unto the Delight, to cast about to seaward, which, being the greater ship, and of burden 120 tunnes, was yet formost upon the breach, keeping so ill watch, that they knew not the danger, before they felt the same, too late to recover it: for presently the Admirall strooke a ground, and had soone after her sterne and hinder partes beaten in pieces: whereupon the rest (that is to say, the Frigat in which was the Generall and the Golden Hinde) cast about Eastsoutheast, bearing to the South, even for our lives into the windes eye, because that way caried us to the seaward. Making out from this danger, wee sounded one while seven fadome, then five fadome, then foure fadome and lesse, againe deeper, immediatly foure fadome, then but three fadome, the sea going mightily and high. At last we recovered (God be thanked) in some despaire, to sea roome enough.

In this distresse, wee had vigilant eye unto the Admirall, whom wee sawe cast away, without power to give the men succour, neither could we espie any of the men that leaped overboord to save themselves, either in the same Pinnesse or Cocke, or upon rafters, and such like meanes, presenting themselves to men in those extremities: for we desired to save the men by every possible meanes. But all in vaine, sith God had determined their ruine: yet all that day, and part of the next, we beat up and downe as neere unto the wracke as was possible for us, looking out, if by good hap we might espie any of them.

This was a heavy and grievous event, to lose at one blow our chiefe shippe fraighted with great provision, gathered together with much travell, care, long time, and difficultie. But more was the losse of our men, which perished to the number almost of a hundreth soules. Amongst whom was drowned a learned man, an Hungarian, borne in the citie of Buda , called thereof Budaeus, who of pietie and zeale to good attempts, adventured in this action, minding to record in the Latine tongue, the gests and things worthy of remembrance, happening in this discoverie, to the honour of our nation, the same being adorned with the eloquent stile of this Orator, and rare Poet of our time.

Here also perished our Saxon Refiner and Discoverer of inestimable riches, as it was left amongst some of us in undoubted hope.

No lesse heavy was the losse of the Captaine Maurice Browne, a vertuous, honest, and discreete Gentleman, overseene onely in liberty given late before to men, that ought to have bene restrained, who shewed himselfe a man resolved, and never unprepared for death, as by his last act of this tragedie appeared, by report of them that escaped this wracke miraculously, as shall bee hereafter declared. For when all hope was past of recovering the ship, and that men began to give over, and to save themselves, the Captaine was advised before to shift also for his life, by the Pinnesse at the sterne of the ship: but refusing that counsell, he would not give example with the first to leave the shippe, but used all meanes to exhort his people not to despaire, nor so to leave off their labour, choosing rather to die, then to incurre infamie, by forsaking his charge, which then might be thought to have perished through his default, shewing an ill president unto his men, by leaving the ship first himselfe. With this mind hee mounted upon the highest decke, where hee attended imminent death, and unavoidable: how long, I leave it to God, who withdraweth not his comfort from his servants at such times.

In the meane season, certaine, to the number of foureteene persons, leaped into a small Pinnesse (the bignes of a Thames barge, which was made in the New found land) cut off the rope wherewith it was towed, and committed themselves to Gods mercy, amiddest the storme, and rage of sea and windes, destitute of foode, not so much as a droppe of fresh water. The boate seeming overcharged in foule weather with company, Edward Headly a valiant souldier, and well reputed of his companie, preferring the greater to the lesser, thought better that some of them perished then all, made this motion to cast lots, and them to bee throwen overboord upon whom the lots fell, thereby to lighten the boate, which otherwayes seemed impossible to live, offred himselfe with the first, content to take his adventure gladly: which nevertheles Richard Clarke, that was Master of the Admirall, and one of this number, refused, advising to abide Gods pleasure, who was able to save all, as well as a few.

The boate was caried before the wind, continuing sixe dayes and nights in the Ocean, and arrived at last with the men (alive, but weake) upon the New found land, saving that the foresayd Headly, (who had bene late sicke) and another called of us Brasile , of his travell into those Countreys, died by the way, famished, and lesse able to holde out, then those of better health. For such was these poore mens extremitie, in cold and wet, to have no better sustenance then their owne urine, for sixe dayes together.

Thus whom God delivered from drowning, hee appointed to bee famished, who doth give limits to mans times, and ordaineth the manner and circumstance of dying: whom againe he will preserve, neither Sea, nor famine can confound. For those that arrived upon the Newe found land, were brought into France by certaine French men, then being upon that coast.

After this heavie chance, wee continued in beating the sea up and downe, expecting when the weather would cleere up, that we might yet beare in with the land, which we judged not farre off, either the continent or some Island. For we many times, and in sundry places found ground at 50, 45, 40 fadomes, and lesse. The ground comming upon our lead, being sometimes oazie sand, and otherwhile a broad shell, with a little sand about it.

Our people lost courage dayly after this ill successe, the weather continuing thicke and blustering, with increase of cold, Winter drawing on, which tooke from them all hope of amendement, setling an assurance of worse weather to growe upon us every day. The Leeside of us lay full of flats and dangers inevitable, if the wind blew hard at South. Some againe doubted we were ingulfed in the Bay of S. Laurence, the coast full of dangers, and unto us unknowen. But above all, provision waxed scant, and hope of supply was gone, with losse of our Admirall.

Those in the Frigat were already pinched with spare allowance, and want of clothes chiefly: Whereupon they besought the Generall to returne for England , before they all perished. And to them of the Golden Hinde, they made signes of their distresse, pointing to their mouthes, and to their clothes thinne and ragged: then immediately they also of the Golden Hinde, grew to be of the same opinion and desire to returne home.

The former reasons having also moved the Generall to have compassion of his poore men, in whom he saw no want of good will, but of meanes fit to performe the action they came for, resolved upon retire: and calling the Captaine and Master of the Hinde, he yeelded them many reasons, inforcing this unexpected returne, withall protesting himselfe, greatly satisfied with that hee had seene, and knew already.

Reiterating these words, Be content, we have seene enough, and take no care of expence past: I will set you foorth royally the next Spring, if God send us safe home. Therefore I pray you let us no longer strive here, where we fight against the elements.

Omitting circumstance, how unwillingly the Captaine & Master of the Hinde condescended to this motion, his owne company can testifie: yet comforted with the Generals promises of a speedie returne at Spring, and induced by other apparant reasons, proving an impossibilitie, to accomplish the action at that time, it was concluded on all hands to retire.

So upon Saturday in the afternoone the 31 of August, we changed our course, and returned backe for England , at which very instant, even in winding about, there passed along betweene us and towards the land which we now forsooke a very lion to our seeming, in shape, hair and colour, not swimming after the maner of a beast by mooving of his feete, but rather sliding upon the water with his whole body (excepting the legs) in sight, neither yet diving under, and againe rising above the water, as the maner is, of Whales, Dolphins, Tunise, Porposes, and all other fish: but confidently shewing himselfe above water without hiding: Notwithstanding, we presented our selves in open view and gesture to amase 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 ougly demonstration of long teeth, and glaring eies, and to bidde us a farewell (comming right against the Hinde) he sent forth a horrible voyce, roaring or bellowing as doeth a lion, which spectacle wee all beheld so farre as we were able to discerne the same, as men prone to wonder at every strange thing, as this doubtlesse was, to see a lion in the Ocean sea, or fish in shape of a lion. What opinion others had thereof, and chiefly the Generall himselfe, I forbeare to deliver: But he tooke it for Bonum Omen, rejoycing that he was to warre against such an enemie, if it were the devill.

The wind was large for England at our returne, but very high, and the sea rough, insomuch as the Frigat wherein the Generall went was almost swalowed up.

Munday in the afternoone we passed in the sight of Cape Race, having made as much way in little more then two dayes and nights backe againe, as before wee had done in eight dayes from Cape Race, unto the place where our ship perished. Which hindrance thitherward, and speed back againe, is to be imputed unto the swift current, as well as to the winds, which we had more large in our returne.

This munday the Generall came aboord the Hind to have the Surgeon of the Hind to dresse his foote, which he hurt by treading upon a naile: At what time we comforted ech other with hope of hard successe to be all past, and of the good to come. So agreeing to cary out lights alwayes by night, that we might keepe together, he departed into his Frigat, being by no meanes to be intreated to tarie in the Hind, which had bene more for his security. Immediatly after followed a sharpe storme, which we overpassed for that time. Praysed be God.

The weather faire, the Generall came aboord the Hind againe, to make merrie together with the Captaine, Master, and company, which was the last meeting, and continued there from morning untill night. During which time there passed sundry discourses, touching affaires past, and to come, lamenting greatly the losse of his great ship, more of the men, but most of all of his bookes and notes, and what els I know not, for which hee was out of measure grieved, the same doubtles being some matter of more importance then his bookes, which I could not draw from him: yet by circumstance I gathered, the same to be ye Ore which Daniel the Saxon had brought unto him in the New found land. Whatsoever it was, the remembrance touched him so deepe, as not able to containe himselfe, he beat his boy in great rage, even at the same time, so long after the miscarying of the great ship, because upon a faire day, when wee were becalmed upon the coast of the New found land, neere unto Cape Race, he sent his boy aboord the Admirall, to fetch certaine things: amongst which, this being chiefe, was yet forgotten and left behind. After which time he could never conveniently send againe aboord the great ship, much lesse hee doubted her ruine so neere at hand.

Herein my opinion was better confirmed diversly, and by sundry conjectures, which maketh me have the greater hope of this rich Mine. For where as the Generall had never before good conceit of these North parts of the world: now his mind was wholly fixed upon the New found land. And as before he refused not to grant assignements liberally to them that required the same into these North parts, now he became contrarily affected, refusing to make any so large grants, especially of S. Johns, which certaine English merchants made suite for, offering to imploy their money and travell upon the same: yet neither by their owne suite, nor of others of his owne company, whom he seemed willing to pleasure, it could be obtained.

Also laying downe his determination in the Spring following, for disposing of his voyage then to be reattempted: he assigned the Captaine & Master of the Golden Hind, unto the South discovery, and reserved unto himselfe the North, affirming that this voyage had wonne his heart from the South, and that he was now become a Northerne man altogether.

Last, being demanded what means he had at his arrivall in England , to compasse the charges of so great preparation as he intended to make the next Spring: having determined upon two fleetes, one for the South, another for the North: Leave that to mee (hee replied) I will aske a pennie of no man. I will bring good tidings unto her Majesty, who wil be so gracious, to lend me 10000 pounds, willing us therefore to be of good cheere: for he did thanke God (he sayd) with al his heart, for that he had seene, the same being enough for us all, and that we needed not to seeke any further. And these last words he would often repeate, with demonstration of great fervencie of mind, being himselfe very confident, and setled in beliefe of inestimable good by this voyage: which the greater number of his followers nevertheles mistrusted altogether, not being made partakers of those secrets, which the Generall kept unto himselfe. Yet all of them that are living, may be witnesses of his words and protestations, which sparingly I have delivered.

Leaving the issue of this good hope unto God, who knoweth the trueth only, & can at his good pleasure bring the same to light: I will hasten to the end of this tragedie, which must be knit up in the person of our Generall. And as it was Gods ordinance upon him, even so the vehement perswasion and intreatie of his friends could nothing availe, to divert him from a wilfull resolution of going through in his Frigat, which was overcharged upon their deckes, with fights, nettings, and small artillerie, too cumbersome for so small a boate, that was to passe through the Ocean sea at that season of the yere, when by course we might expect much storme of foule weather, whereof indeed we had enough.

But when he was intreated by the Captaine, Master, and other his well willers of the Hinde, not to venture in the Frigat, this was his answere: I will not forsake my little company going homeward, with whom I have passed so many stormes and perils. And in very trueth, hee was urged to be so over hard, by hard reports given of him, that he was afraid of the sea, albeit this was rather rashnes, then advised resolution, to preferre the wind of a vaine report to the weight of his owne life.

Seeing he would not bend to reason, he had provision out of the Hinde, such as was wanting aboord his Frigat. And so we committed him to Gods protection, & set him aboord his Pinnesse, we being more then 300 leagues onward of our way home.

By that time we had brought the Islands of Acores South of us, yet wee then keeping much to the North, until we had got into the height and elevation of England : we met with very foule weather, and terrible seas, breaking short and high Pyramid wise. The reason whereof seemed to proceede either of hilly grounds high and low within the sea, (as we see hilles and dales upon the land) upon which the seas doe mount and fall: or else the cause proceedeth of diversitie of winds, shifting often in sundry points: al which having power to move the great Ocean, which againe is not presently setled, so many seas do encounter together, as there had bene diversitie of windes. Howsoever it commeth to passe, men which all their life time had occupied the Sea, never saw more outragious Seas. We had also upon our maine yard, an apparition of a little fire by night, which seamen doe call Castor and Pollux. But we had onely one, which they take an evill signe of more tempest: the same is usuall in stormes.

Munday the ninth of September, in the afternoone, the Frigat was neere cast away, oppressed by waves, yet at that time recovered: and giving foorth signes of joy, the Generall sitting abaft with a booke in his hand,. cried out unto us in the Hind (so oft as we did approch within hearing) We are as neere to heaven by sea as. by land. Reiterating the same speech, well beseeming a souldier, resolute in Jesus Christ, as I can testifie he was.

The same Monday night, about twelve of the clocke, or not long after, the Frigat being ahead of us in theGolden Hinde, suddenly her lights were out, whereof as it were in a moment, we lost the sight, and withall our watch cryed, the Generall was cast away, which was too true. For in that moment, the Frigat was devoured and swallowed up of the Sea. Yet still we looked out all that night, and ever after, untill wee arrived upon the coast of England : Omitting no small saile at sea, unto which we gave not the tokens betweene us, agreed upon, to have perfect knowledge of each other, if we should at any time be separated.

In great torment of weather, and perill of drowning, it pleased God to send safe home the Golden Hinde, which arrived in Falmouth, the 22 day of September, being Sonday, not without as great danger escaped in a flaw, comming from the Southeast, with such thicke mist, that we could not discerne land, to put in right with the Haven.

From Falmouth we went to Dartmouth , & lay there at anker before the Range, while the captaine went aland, to enquire if there had bene any newes of the Frigat, which sayling well, might happily have bene before us. Also to certifie Sir John Gilbert, brother unto the Generall of our hard successe, whom the Captaine desired (while his men were yet aboord him, and were witnesses of all occurrents in that voyage,) It might please him to take the examination of every person particularly, in discharge of his and their faithfull endevour. Sir John Gilbert refused so to doe, holding himselfe satisfied with report made by the Captaine: and not altogether dispairing of his brothers safetie, offered friendship and curtesie to the Captaine and his company, requiring to have his Barke brought into the harbour: in furtherance whereof, a boate was sent to helpe to tow her in.

Neverthelesse, when the Captaine returned aboord his ship, he found his men bent to depart, every man to his home: and then the winde serving to proceede higher upon the coast: they demanded money to carie them home, some to London , others to Harwich , and elsewhere, (if the barke should be caried into Dartmouth , and they discharged, so farre from home) or else to take benefite of the wind, then serving to draw neerer home, which should be a lesse charge unto the Captaine, and great ease unto the men, having els farre to goe.

Reason accompanied with necessitie perswaded the Captaine, who sent his lawfull excuse and cause of his sudden departure unto sir John Gilbert, by the boate of Dartmouth , and from thence the Golden Hind departed, and tooke harbour at Waimouth. Al the men tired with the tediousnes of so unprofitable a voiage to their seeming: in which their l