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The third voyage of Captaine Frobisher, pretended for the discoverie of Cataia, by Meta Incognita, Anno Do. 1578.

THE Generall being returned from the second voyage, immediately after his arrivall in England , repaired with all hast to the Court being then at Windsore, to advertise her Majestie of his prosperous proceeding, and good successe in this last voyage, & of the plenty of gold Ore, with other matters of importance which he had in these Septentrionall parts discovered. He was courteously enterteyned, and hartily welcommed of many noble men, but especially for his great adventure, commended of her Majestie, at whose hands he received great thankes, and most gracious countenance, according to his deserts. Her Highnesse also greatly commended the rest of the Gentlemen in this service, for their great forwardnes in this so dangerous an attempt: but especially she rejoyced very much, that among them there was so good order of governement, so good agreement, every man so ready in his calling, to do whatsoever the General should command, which due commendation gratiously of her Majestie remembred, gave so great encouragement to all the Captaines and Gentlemen, that they, to continue her Highnesse so good and honourable opinion of them, have since neither spared labour, limme, nor life, to bring this matter (so well begun) to a happie and prosperous ende. And finding that the matter of the golde Ore had appearance & made shew of great riches & profit, & the hope of the passage to Cataya, by this last voyage greatly increased, her Majestie appointed speciall Commissioners chosen for this purpose, gentlemen of great judgement, art, and skill, to looke thorowly into the cause, for the true triall and due examination thereof, and for the full handling of all matters thereunto appertaining. And because that place and countrey hath never heretofore beene discovered, and therefore had no speciall name, by which it might be called and knowen, her Majestie named it very properly Meta Incognita, as a marke and bound utterly hitherto unknowen. The commissioners after sufficient triall and proofe made of the Ore, and having understood by sundrie reasons, and substantiall grounds, the possibilitie and likelyhood of the passage, advertised her highnesse, that the cause was of importance, and the voyage greatly worthy to be advanced againe. Whereupon preparation was made of ships and all other things necessary, with such expedition, as the time of the yeere then required. And because it was assuredly made accompt of, that the commoditie of Mines, there already discovered, would at the least countervaile in all respects the adventurers charge, and give further hope & likelyhood of greater matters to follow: it was thought needfull, both for the better guard of those parts already found, and for further discovery of the Inland and secrets of those countreys, & also for further search of the passage to Cataya (whereof the hope continually more & more increaseth) that certaine numbers of chosen souldiers and discreet men for those purposes should be assigned to inhabite there. Whereupon there was a strong fort or house of timber, artificially framed, & cunningly devised by a notable learned man here at home, in ships to be caried thither, wherby those men that were appointed to winter & stay there the whole yere, might aswell bee defended from the danger of the snow and colde ayre, as also fortified from the force or offence of those countrey people, which perhaps otherwise with too great multitudes might oppresse them. And to this great adventure and notable exploit many well minded and forward yong Gentlemen of our countrey willingly have offered themselves. And first Captaine Fenton Lieutenant generall for Captaine Frobisher, and in charge of the company with him there, Captaine Best, and Captaine Filpot, unto whose good discretions the government of that service was chiefly commended, who, as men not regarding peril in respect of the profit and common wealth of their countrey, were willing to abide the first brunt & adventure of those dangers among a savage and brutish kinde of people, in a place hitherto ever thought for extreme cold not habitable. The whole number of men which had offered, and were appointed to inhabite Meta Incognita all the yeere, were one hundreth persons, wherof 40 should be mariners for the use of ships, 30 Miners for gathering the gold Ore together for the next yere, and 30 souldiers for the better guard of the rest, within which last number are included the Gentlemen, Goldfiners, Bakers, Carpenters, & all necessary persons. To each of the Captaines was assigned one ship, aswel for the further searching of the coast & countrey there, as for to returne & bring backe their companies againe, if the necessity of the place so urged, or by miscarying of the fleet the next yere, they might be disappointed of their further provision. Being therfore thus furnished with al necessaries, there were ready to depart upon the said voyage 15 saile of good ships, wherof the whole number was to returne again with their loding of gold Ore in the end of the sommer, except those 3 ships, which should be left for the use of those Captains which should inhabite there the whole yere. And being in so good readinesse, the Generall with all the Captaines came to the Court, then lying at Greenwich , to take their leave of her Majestie, at whose hands they all received great incouragement, and gracious countenance. Her highnesse besides other good gifts, and greater promises, bestowed on the Generall a faire chaine of golde, and the rest of the Captaines kissed her hand, tooke their leave, and departed every man towards their charge.

The names of the ships with their severall Captaines.

1 In the Aide being Amirall, was the Generall Captain Frobisher.
2 In the Thomas Allen Viceadmirall Yorke.
3 In the Judith Lieutenant generall Fenton .
4 In the Anne Francis Best.
5 In the Hopewell Carew.
6 In the Beare Filpot.
7 In the Thomas of Ipswich Tanfield
8 In the Emmanuel of Exceter Courtney.
9 In the Francis of Foy Moyles.
10 In the Moone Upcot.
11 In the Emmanuel of Bridgewater Newton .
12 In the Salomon of Weymouth Randal.
13 In the Barke Dennis Kendal .
14 In the Gabriel Harvey .
15 In the Michael Kinnersley.

The sayd fifteene saile of ships arrived and met together at Harwich , the seven and twentieth day of May Anno 1578, where the Generall and the other Captaines made view, and mustred their companies. And every several Captaine received from the Generall certaine Articles of direction, for the better keeping of order and company together in the way, which Articles are as followeth.

Articles and orders to be observed for the Fleete, set downe by Captaine Frobisher Generall, and delivered in writing to every Captaine, as well for keeping company, as for the course, the 31 of May.

  1. 1 INPRIMIS, to banish swearing, dice, and card-playing, and filthy conmunication, and to serve God twice a day, with the ordinary service usuall in Churches of England, and to cleare the glasse, according to the old order of England .
  2. 2 The Admiral shall carie the light, & after his light be once put out, no man to goe a head of him, but every man to fit his sailes to follow as neere as they may, without endangering one another.
  3. 3 That no man shall by day or by night depart further from the Admirall then the distance of one English mile, and as neere as they may, without danger one of another.
  4. 4 If it chance to grow thicke, and the wind contrary, either by day or by night, that the Admirall be forced to cast about, before her casting about shee shall give warning, by shooting off a peece, and to her shall answere the Viceadmirall and the Rereadmirall each of them with a piece, if it bee by night, or in a fogge; and that the Viceadmirall shall answere first, and the Rereadmirall last.
  5. 5 That no man in the Fleete descrying any sayle or sayles, give upon any occasion any chace before he have spoken with the Admirall.
  6. 6 That every evening all the Fleete come up and speake with the Admirall, at seven of the Clocke, or betweene that and eight, and if the weather will not serve them all to speake with the Admirall, then some shall come to the Viceadmirall, and receive the order of their course of Master Hall chiefe Pilot of the Fleete, as he shall direct them.
  7. 7 If to any man in the Fleete there happen any mischance, they shall presently shoote off two peeces by day, and if it be by night, two peeces, and shew two lights.
  8. 8 If any man in the Fleete come up in the night, & hale his fellow knowing him not, he shall give him this watch-word, Before the world was God. The other shal answere him (if he be one of our Fleete) After God came Christ his Sonne. So that if any be found amongst us, not of our owne company, he that first descrieth any such sayle or sayles, shall give warning to the Admirall by himselfe or any other that he can speake to, that sailes better then he, being neerest unto him.
  9. 9 That every ship in the fleete in the time of fogs, which continually happen with little winds, and most part calmes, shall keepe a reasonable noise with trumpet, drumme, or otherwise, to keepe themselves cleere one of another.
  10. 10 If it fall out so thicke or mistie that we lay it to hull, the Admiral shall give warning with a piece, and putting out three lights one over another, to the end that every man may take in his sailes, and at his setting of sayles againe doe the like, if it be not cleere.
  11. 11 If any man discover land by night, that he give the like warning, that he doth for mischances, two lights, and two pieces, if it be by day one piece, and put out his flagge, and strike all his sailes he hath aboord.
  12. 12 If any ship shall happen to lose company by force of weather, then any such ship or ships shall get her into the latitude of , and so keepe that latitude untill they get Frisland. And after they be past the West parts of Frisland, they shall get them into the latitude of , and , and not to the Northward of ; and being once entred within the Streites, al such ships shal every watch shoote off a good piece, and looke out well for smoke and fire which those that get in first shall make every night, untill all the fleete be come together.
  13. 13 That upon the sight of an Ensigne in the mast of the Admirall (a piece being shot off) the whole fleete shall repaire to the Admirall, to understand such conference as the Generall is to have with them.
  14. 14 If we chance to meete with any enemies, that foure ships shall attend upon the Admirall, viz. the Francis of Foy, the Moone, the Barke Dennis, and the Gabriel: and foure upon my Lieutenant generall in the Judith, viz. the Hopewel, the Armenal, the Beare, and the Salomon: and the other foure upon the Vizadmirall, the Anne Francis, the Thomas of Ipswich, the Emmanuel, and the Michael.
  15. 15 If there happen any disordred person in the Fleete, that he be taken and kept in safe custodie untill he may conveniently be brought aboord the Admirall, and there to receive such punishment as his or their offences shall deserve.
By me Martin Frobisher.

Our departure from England .

HAVING received these articles of direction we departed from Harwich the one and thirtieth of May. And sayling along the South part of England Westward, we at length came by the coast of Ireland at Cape Cleare the sixth of June, and gave chase there to a small barke which was supposed to be a Pyrat, or Rover on the Seas, but it fell out indeede that they were poore men of Bristow, who had met with such company of Frenchmen as had spoiled and slaine many of them, and left the rest so sore wounded that they were like to perish in the sea, having neither hand nor foote hole to helpe themselves with, nor victuals to sustaine their hungry bodies. Our Generall, who well understood the office of a Souldier and an Englishman, and knew well what the necessitie of the sea meaneth, pitying much the miserie of the poore men, relieved them with Surgerie and salves to heale their hurtes, and with meate and drinke to comfort their pining hearts; some of them having neither eaten nor drunke more then olives and stinking water in many dayes before, as they reported. And after this good deede done, having a large wind, we kept our course upon our sayd voyage without staying for the taking in of fresh water, or any other provision, whereof many of the fleete were not throughly furnished: and sayling towards the Northwest parts from Ireland , we mette with a great current from out of the Southwest, which caried us (by our reckoning) one point to the Northeastwards of our sayd course, which current seemed to us to continue it selfe towards Norway , and other the Northeast parts of the world, whereby we may be induced to beleeve, that this is the same which the Portugals meete at Capo de buona Speranza, where striking over from thence to the Streites of Magellan, and finding no passage there for the narrownesse of the sayde Streites, runneth along into the great Bay of Mexico, where also having a let of land, it is forced to strike backe againe towards the Northeast, as we not onely here, but in another place also, further to the Northwards, by good experience this yeere have found, as shalbe hereafter in his place more at large declared.

Now had we sayled about foureteene dayes, without sight of any land, or any other living thing, except certaine foules, as Wilmots, Nodies, Gulles, &c. which there seeme onely to live by sea.

The twentieth of June, at two of the clocke in the morning, the General descried land, & found it to be West Frisland, now named west England. Here the Generall, & other Gentlemen went ashore, being the first knowen Christians that we have true notice of, that ever set foot upon that ground: and therefore the Generall tooke possession thereof to the use of our Sovereigne Lady the Queenes Majestie, and discovered here a goodly harborough for the ships, where were also certaine little boates of that countrey. And being there landed, they espied certaine tents and people of that countrey, which were (as they judge) in all sorts, very like those of Meta Incognita, as by their apparell, and other things which we found in their tents, appeared.

The Savage and simple people so soone as they perceived our men comming towards them (supposing there had bene no other world but theirs) fled fearefully away, as men much amazed at so strange a sight, and creatures of humane shape, so farre in apparell, complexion, and other things different from themselves. They left in their tents all their furniture for haste behind them, where amongst other things were found a boxe of small nailes, and certaine red Herrings, boords of Firre tree well cut, with divers other things artificially wrought: whereby it appeareth, that they have trade with some civill people, or else are indeede themselves artificiall workemen.

Our men brought away with them onely two of their dogs, leaving in recompense belles, looking-glasses, and divers of our countrey toyes behinde them.

This countrey, no doubt, promiseth good hope of great commoditie and riches, if it may be well discovered. The description whereof you shall finde more at large in the second voyage.

Some are of opinion, that this West England is firme land with the Northeast partes of Meta Incognita, or else with Groenland . And their reason is, because the people, apparel, boates, and other things are so like to theirs: and another reason is, the multitude of Islands of yce, which lay betweene it and Meta Incognita, doth argue, that on the North side there is a bay, which cannot be but by conjoyning of the two lands together.

And having a faire and large winde we departed from thence towards Frobishers Streites, the three and twentieth of June. But first wee gave name to a high cliffe in West England, the last that was in our sight, and for a certaine similitude we called it Charing crosse. Then wee bare Southerly towards the Sea, because to the Northwardes of this coast we met with much driving yce, which by reason of the thicke mistes and weather might have bene some trouble unto us.

On Munday the last of June, wee met with many great Whales, as they had bene Porposes.

This same day the Salamander being under both her corses and bonets, happened to strike a great Whale with her full stemme, with such a blow that the ship stoode still, and stirred neither forward nor backward. The Whale thereat made a great and ugly noyse, and cast up his body and taile, and so went under water, and within two daies after, there was found a great Whale dead swimming above water, which wee supposed was that which the Salamander strooke.

The second day of July early in the morning we had sight of the Queenes Foreland, and bare in with the land all the day, and passing thorow great quantity of yce, by night were entred somewhat within the Streites, perceiving no way to passe further in, the whole place being frozen over from the one side to the other, and as it were with many walles, mountaines, and bulwarks of yce, choked up the passage, and denied us entrance. And yet doe I not thinke that this passage or Sea hereabouts is frozen over at any time of the yere: albeit it seemed so unto us by the abundance of yce gathered together, which occupied the whole place. But I doe rather suppose these yce to bee bred in the hollow soundes and freshets thereabouts: which by the heate of the sommers Sunne, being loosed, doe emptie themselves with the ebbes into the sea, and so gather in great abundance there together.

And to speake somewhat here of the ancient opinion of the frozen sea in these parts: I doe thinke it to be rather a bare conjecture of men, then that ever any man hath made experience of any such sea. And that which they speake of Mare glaciale, may be truely thought to be spoken of these parts: for this may well be called indeede the ycie sea, but not the frozen sea, for no sea consisting of salt water can be frozen, as I have more at large herein shewed my opinion in my second voyage, for it seemeth impossible for any sea to bee frozen, which hath his course of ebbing and flowing, especially in those places where the tides doe ebbe and flowe above ten fadome. And also all these aforesayd yce, which we sometime met a hundreth mile from lande, being gathered out of the salt Sea, are in taste fresh, and being dissolved, become sweete and holesome water.

And the cause why this yere we have bene more combred with yce then at other times before, may be by reason of the Easterly & Southerly winds, which brought us more timely thither now then we looked for. Which blowing from the sea directly upon the place of our Streites, hath kept in the yce, and not suffered them to be caried out by the ebbe to the maine sea, where they would in more short time have bene dissolved. And all these fleeting yce are not only so dangerous in that they wind and gather so neere together, that a man may passe sometimes tenne or twelve miles as it were upon one firme Island of yce: but also for that they open and shut together againe in such sort with the tides and sea-gate, that whilest one ship followeth the other with full sayles, the yce which was open unto the foremost will joyne and close together before the latter can come to follow the first, whereby many times our shippes were brought into great danger, as being not able so sodainely to take in our sayles, or stay the swift way of our ships.

We were forced many times to stemme and strike great rockes of yce, and so as it were make way through mighty mountaines. By which meanes some of the fleete, where they found the yce to open, entred in, and passed so farre within the danger thereof, with continuall desire to recover their port, that it was the greatest wonder of the world that they ever escaped safe, or were ever heard of againe. For even at this present we missed two of the fleete, that is, the Judith, wherein was the Lieutenant generall Captaine Fenton; and the Michael, whom both we supposed had bene utterly lost, having not heard any tidings of them in moe then 20 dayes before.

And one of our fleete named the Barke Dennis, being of an hundreth tunne burden, seeking way in amongst these yce, received such a blow with a rocke of yce that she sunke downe therewith in the sight of the whole fleete. Howbeit having signified her danger by shooting off a peece of great Ordinance, new succour of other ships came so readily unto them, that the men were all saved with boats.

Within this ship that was drowned there was parcell of our house which was to bee erected for them that should stay all the winter in Meta Incognita.

This was a more fearefull spectacle for the Fleete to beholde, for that the outragious storme which presently followed, threatned them the like fortune and danger. For the Fleete being thus compassed (as aforesayd) on every side with yce, having left much behinde them, thorow which they passed, and finding more before them, thorow which it was not possible to passe, there arose a sudden terrible tempest at the Southeast, which blowing from the maine sea, directly upon the place of the Streites, brought together all the yce a sea-boorde of us upon our backes, and thereby debard us of turning backe to recover sea-roome againe: so that being thus compassed with danger on every side, sundry men with sundry devises sought the best way to save themselves. Some of the ships, where they could find a place more cleare of yce, and get a little birth of sea roome, did take in their sayles, and there lay a drift. Other some fastened & mored Anker upon a great Island of yce, and roade under the Lee therof, supposing to be better guarded thereby from the outragious winds, and the danger of the lesser fleeting yce. And againe some where so fast shut up, and compassed in amongst an infinite number of great countreys and Islands of yce, that they were faine to submit themselves and their ships to the mercy of the unmercifull yce, and strengthened the sides of their ships with junckes of cables, beds, Mastes, plankes and such like, which being hanged over boord on the sides of their ships, might the better defend them from the outragious sway and strokes of the said yce. But as in greatest distresse, men of best valour are best to bee discerned, so it is greatly worthy commendation and noting with what invincible minde every Captaine encouraged his company, and with what incredible labour the painefull Mariners and poore Miners (unacquainted with such extremities) to the everlasting renowne of our nation, did overcome the brunt of these so great and extreme dangers: for some, even without boord upon the yce, and some within boord upon the sides of their ships, having poles, pikes, pieces of timber, and Ores in their handes, stoode almost day and night without any rest, bearing off the force, and breaking the sway of the yce with such incredible paine and perill, that it was wonderfull to beholde, which otherwise no doubt had striken quite through and through the sides of their ships, notwithstanding our former provision: for plankes of timber of more then three inches thicke, and other things of greater force and bignesse, by the surging of the sea and billowe, with the yce were shivered and cut in sunder, at the sides of our ships, so that it will seeme more then credible to be reported of. And yet (that which is more) it is faithfully and plainely to bee prooved, and that by many substantiall witnesses, that our ships, even those of greatest burdens, with the meeting of contrary waves of the sea, were heaved up betweene Islands of yce, a foote welneere out of the sea above their watermarke, having their knees and timbers within boord both bowed and broken therewith.

And amidst these extremes, whilest some laboured for defence of the ships, and sought to save their bodies, other some of more milder spirit sought to save the soule by devout prayer and meditation to the Almightie, thinking indeede by no other meanes possible then by a divine Miracle to have their deliverance: so that there was none that were either idle, or not well occupied, and he that helde himselfe in best securitie had (God knoweth) but onely bare hope remayning for his best safetie.

Thus all the gallant Fleete and miserable men without hope of ever getting foorth againe, distressed with these extremities remayned here all the whole night and part of the next day, excepting foure ships, that is, the Anne Francis, the Moone, the Francis of Foy, and the Gabriell, which being somewhat a Seaboord of the Fleete, and being fast ships by a winde, having a more scope of cleare, tryed it out all the time of the storme under sayle, being hardly able to beare a coast of each.

And albeit, by reason of the fleeting yce, which were dispersed here almost the whole sea over, they were brought many times to the extreamest point of perill, mountaines of yce tenne thousand times scaping them scarce one ynch, which to have striken had bene their present destruction, considering the swift course and way of the ships, and the unwieldinesse of them to stay and turne as a man would wish: yet they esteemed it their better safetie, with such perill to seeke Sea-roome, than without hope of ever getting libertie to lie striving against the streame, and beating amongst the Isie mountaines, whose hugenesse and monstrous greatnesse was such, that no man would credite, but such as to their paines sawe and felt it. And these foure shippes by the next day at noone got out to Sea, and were first cleare of the yce, who now enjoying their owne libertie, beganne a new to sorrow and feare for their fellowes safeties. And devoutly kneeling about their maine Mast, they gave unto God humble thankes, not only for themselves, but besought him likewise highly for their friendes deliverance. And even now whilest amiddest these extremities this gallant Fleete and valiant men were altogither overlaboured and forewatched, with the long and fearefull continuance of the foresayd dangers, it pleased God with his eyes of mercie to looke downe from heaven to sende them helpe in good time, giving them the next day a more favourable winde at the West Northwest, which did not onely disperse and drive foorth the yce before them, but also gave them libertie of more scope and Sea-roome, and they were by night of the same day following perceived of the other foure shippes, where (to their greatest comfort) they enjoyed againe the fellowship one of another.' Some in mending the sides of their ships, some in setting up their top Mastes, and mending their sayles and tacklings; Againe, some complayning of their false Stemme borne away, some in stopping their leakes, some in recounting their dangers past, spent no small time & labour. So that I dare well avouch, there were never men more dangerously distressed, nor more mercifully by Gods providence delivered. And hereof both the torne ships, and the forwearied bodies of the men arrived doe beare most evident marke and witnesse. And now the whole Fleete plyed off to Seaward, resolving there to abide untill the Sunne might consume, or the force of winde disperse these yce from the place of their passage: and being a good birth off the shore, they tooke in their sailes, and lay adrift.

The seventh of July as men nothing yet dismayed, we cast about towards the inward, and had sight of land, which rose in forme like the Northerland of the straights, which some of the Fleete, and those not the worst Marriners, judged to be the North Foreland: howbeit other some were of contrary opinion. But the matter was not well to be discerned by reason of the thicke fogge which a long time hung upon the coast, & the new falling snow which yeerely altereth the shape of the land, and taketh away oftentimes the Mariners markes. And by reason of the darke mists which continued by the space of twentie dayes togither, this doubt grewe the greater and the longer perilous. For whereas indeede we thought our selves to be upon the Northeast side of Frobishers straights, we were now caried to the Southwestwards of the Queenes Foreland, and being deceived by a swift current comming from the Northeast, were brought to the Southwestwards of our said course many miles more then we did thinke possible could come to passe. The cause whereof we have since found, and it shall be at large hereafter declared.

Here we made a point of land which some mistooke for a place in the straightes called Mount Warwicke: but how we should be so farre shot up so suddainely within the said straights the expertest Mariners began to marvell, thinking it a thing impossible that they could be so farre overtaken in their accounts, or that any current could deceive them here which they had not by former experience prooved and found out. Howbeit many confessed that they found a swifter course of flood then before time they had observed. And truely it was wonderfull to heare and see the rushing and noise that the tides do make in this place with so violent a force that our ships lying a hull were turned sometimes round about even in a moment after the maner of a whirlepoole, and the noyse of the streame no lesse to be heard afarre off, then the waterfall of London Bridge.

But whilest the Fleete lay thus doubtfull amongst great store of yce in a place they knew not without sight of Sunne, whereby to take the height, and so to know the true elevation of the pole, and without any cleere of light to make perfite the coast, the Generall with the Captaines & Masters of his ships, began doubtfully to question of the matter, and sent his Pinnesse aboord to heare each mans opinion, and specially of James Beare, Master of the Anne Francis, who was knowen to be a sufficient and skilful Mariner, and having bene there the yere before, had wel observed the place, and drawen out Cardes of the coast. But the rather this matter grew the more doubtfull, for that Christopher Hall chiefe Pilot of the voyage, delivered a plaine and publique opinion in the hearing of the whole Fleete, that hee had never seene the foresayd coast before, and that he could not make it for any place of Frobishers Streits, as some of the Fleete supposed, and yet the landes doe lie and trend so like, that the best Mariners therein may bee deceived.

The tenth of July, the weather still continuing thicke and darke, some of the ships in the fogge lost sight of the Admirall and the rest of the fleete, and wandering to and fro, with doubtfull opinion whether it were best to seeke backe againe to seaward through great store of yce, or to follow on a doubtfull course in a Sea, Bay, or Streites they knew not, or along a coast, whereof by reason of the darke mistes they could not discerne the dangers, if by chance any rocke or broken ground should lie of the place, as commonly in these parts it doth.

The Viceadmirall Captaine Yorke considering the foresayd opinion of the Pylot Hall, who was with him in the Thomas Allen, having lost sight of the Fleete, turned backe to sea againe, having two other ships in company with him.

Also the Captaine of the Anne Francis having likewise lost company of the Fleete, and being all alone, held it for best to turne it out to sea againe, untill they might have cleere weather to take the Sunnes altitude, and with incredible paine and perill got out of the doubtfull place, into the open Sea againe, being so narrowly distressed by the way, by meanes of continuall fogge and yce, that they were many times ready to leape upon an Iland of yce to avoide the present danger, and so hoping to prolong life awhile meant rather to die a pining death.

Some hoped to save themselves on chestes, and some determined to tie the Hatches of the ships togither, and to binde themselves with their furniture fast thereunto, and so to be towed with the ship-bote ashore, which otherwise could not receive halfe of the companie, by which meanes if happily they had arrived, they should eyther have perished for lacke of foode to eate, or else should themselves have beene eaten of those ravenous, bloodie, and Men-eating people.

The rest of the Fleete following the course of the Generall which led them the way, passed up above sixtie leagues within the saide doubtfull and supposed straights, having alwayes a faire continent upon their starreboorde side, and a continuance still of an open Sea before them.

The Generall albeit with the first perchance he found out the error, and that this was not the olde straights, yet he perswaded the Fleete alwayes that they were in their right course, and knowen straights. Howbeit I suppose he rather dissembled his opinion therein then otherwise, meaning by that policie (being himselfe led with an honourable desire of further discoverie) to induce the Fleete to follow him, to see a further proofe of that place. And as some of the companie reported, he hath since confessed that if it had not bene for the charge and care he had of the Fleete and fraughted ships, he both would and could have gone through to the South Sea, called Mar del Sur, and dissolved the long doubt of the passage which we seeke to find to the rich countrey of Cataya.

1 Of which mistaken straights, considering the circumstance, we have great cause to confirme our opinion, to like and hope well of the passage in this place. For the foresaid Bay or Sea, the further we sayled therein, the wider we found it, with great likelihood of endlesse continuance. And where in other places we were much troubled with yce, as in the entrance of the same, so after we had sayled fiftie or sixtie leagues therein we had no let of yce, or other thing at all, as in other places we found.

2 Also this place seemeth to have a marvellous great indraft, and draweth unto it most of the drift yce, and other things which doe fleete in the Sea, either to the North or Eastwards of the same, as by good experience we have found.

3 For here also we met with boordes, lathes, and divers other things driving in the Sea, which was of the wracke of the ship called the Barke Dennis, which perished amongst the yce as beforesaid, being lost at the first attempt of the entrance overthwart the Queenes forelande in the mouth of Frobishers straights, which could by no meanes have bene so brought thither, neither by winde nor tyde, being lost so many leagues off, if by force of the said current the same had not bene violently brought. For if the same had bene brought thither by tide of flood, looke how farre the said flood had carried it, the ebbe would have recarried it as farre backe againe, and by the winde it could not so come to passe, because it was then sometime calme, and most times contrarie.

And some Mariners doe affirme that they have diligently observed, that there runneth in this place nine houres flood to three ebbe, which may thus come to passe by force of the sayd current: for whereas the Sea in most places of the world, doth more or lesse ordinarily ebbe and flow once every twelve houres with sixe houres ebbe, and sixe houres flood, so also would it doe there, were it not for the violence of this hastning current, which forceth the flood to make appearance to beginne before his ordinary time one houre and a halfe, and also to continue longer than his naturall course by an other houre and a halfe, untill the force of the ebbe be so great that it will no longer be resisted: according to the saying, Naturam expellas furca licet, usque recurrit. Although nature and naturall courses be forced and resisted never so much, yet at last they will have their owne sway againe.

Moreover it is not possible that so great course of floods and current, so high swelling tides with continuance of so deepe waters, can be digested here without unburdening themselves into some open Sea beyond this place, which argueth the more likelihood of the passage to be hereabouts. Also we suppose these great indrafts doe growe and are made by the reverberation and reflection of that same current, which at our comming by Ireland , met and crossed us, of which in the first part of this discourse I spake, which comming from the bay of Mexico, passing by and washing the Southwest parts of Ireland , reboundeth over to the Northeast parts of the world, as Norway , Island, &c. where not finding any passage to an open Sea, but rather being there encreased by a new accesse, and another current meeting with it from the Scythian Sea, passing the bay of Saint Nicholas Westward, it doth once againe rebound backe, by the coastes of Groenland , and from thence upon Frobishers straights being to the Southwestwardes of the same.

5 And if that principle of Philosopie be true, that Inferiora corpora reguntur a superioribus, that is, if inferior bodies be governed, ruled, and caried after the maner and course of the superiors, then the water being an inferior Element, must needes be governed after the superior heaven, and so follow the course of Primum mobile from East to West.

6 But every man that hath written or considered any thing of this passage, hath more doubted the returne by the same way by reason of a great downefall of water, which they imagine to be thereabouts (which we also by experience partly find) than any mistrust they have of the same passage at all. For we find (as it were) a great downefall in this place, but yet not such but that we may returne, although with much adoe. For we were easlier carried in one houre then we could get forth againe in three. Also by another experience at another time, we found this current to deceive us in this sort: That wheras we supposed it to be 15 leagues off, and lying a hull, we were brought within two leagues of the shore contrarie to all expectation.

Our men that sayled furthest in the same mistaken straights (having the maine land upon their starboord side) affirme that they met with the outlet or passage of water which commeth thorow Frobishers straights, and followeth as all one into this passage.

Some of our companie also affirme that they had sight of a continent upon their larboord-side being 60 leagues within the supposed straights: howbeit except certaine Ilands in the entrance hereof we could make no part perfect thereof. All the foresaid tract of land seemeth to be more fruitfull and better stored of Grasse, Deere, Wild foule, as Partridges, Larkes, Seamewes, Guls, Wilmots, Falcons and Tassel gentils, Ravens, Beares, Hares, Foxes, and other things, than any other part we have yet discovered, and is more populous. And here Luke Ward, a Gentleman of the companie, traded marchandise, and did exchange knives, bels, looking glasses, &c. with those countrey people, who brought him foule, fish, beares skinnes, and such like, as their countrey yeeldeth for the same. Here also they saw of those greater boats of the countrey, with twentie persons in a peece.

Now after the Generall had bestowed these many dayes here, not without many dangers, he returned backe againe. And by the way sayling alongst this coast (being the backeside of the supposed continent of America ) and the Queenes Foreland, he perceived a great sound to goe thorow into Frobishers straights. Whereupon he sent the Gabriel the one and twentieth of July, to proove whether they might goe thorow and meete againe with him in the straights, which they did: and as wee imagined before, so the Queenes foreland prooved an Iland, as I thinke most of these supposed continents will. And so he departed towardes the straights, thinking it were high time now to recover his Port, and to provide the Fleete of their lading, whereof he was not a little carefull, as shall by the processe and his resolute attempts appeare. And in his returne with the rest of the fleete he was so intangled by reason of the darke fogge amongst a number of Ilands and broken ground that lye off this coast, that many of the shippes came over the top of rockes, which presently after they might perceive to lie dry, having not halfe a foote water more then some of their ships did draw. And by reason they could not with a smal gale of wind stemme the force of the flood, whereby to goe cleere off the rockes, they were faine to let an anker fall with two bent of Cable togither, at an hundred and odde fadome depth, where otherwise they had bene by the force of the tydes caried upon the rockes againe, and perished: so that if God in these fortunes (as a mercifull guide, beyond the expectation of man) had not carried us thorow, we had surely perished amidst these dangers. For being many times driven hard aboord the shore without any sight of land, untill we were ready to make shipwracke thereon, being forced commonly with our boats to sound before our ships, least we might light thereon before we could discerne the same; it pleased God to give us a cleare of Sunne and light for a short time to see and avoyde thereby the danger, having bene continually darke before, and presently after. Manie times also by meanes of fogge and currents being driven neere upon the coast, God lent us even at the very pinch one prosperous breath of winde or other, whereby to double the land, and avoid the perill, and when that we were all without hope of helpe, every man recommending himselfe to death, and crying out, Lord now helpe or never, now Lord looke downe from heaven and save us sinners, or else our safetie commeth too late: even then the mightie maker of heaven, and our mercifull God did deliver us: so that they who have bene partakers of these dangers doe even in their soules confesse, that God even by miracle hath sought to save them, whose name be praysed evermore.

Long time now the Anne Francis had layne beating off and on all alone before the Queenes foreland, not being able to recover their Port for yce, albeit many times they dangerously attempted it, for yet the yce choaked up the passage, and would not suffer them to enter. And having never seene any of the fleete since twenty dayes past, when by reason of the thicke mistes they were severed in the mistaken straights, they did now this present 23 of July overthwart a place in the straights called Hattons Hedland, where they met with seven ships of ye Fleete againe, which good hap did not onely rejoyce them for themselves, in respect of the comfort which they received by such good companie, but especially that by this meanes they were put out of doubt of their deare friends, whose safeties long time they did not a little suspect and feare.

At their meeting they haled the Admirall after the maner of the Sea, and with great joy welcommed one another with a thundring volly of shot. And now every man declared at large the fortunes and dangers which they had passed.

The foure and twentieth of July we met with the Francis of Foy, who with much adoe sought way backe againe, through the yce from out of the mistaken straights, where (to their great perill) they prooved to recover their Port. They brought the first newes of the Vizadmirall Captaine Yorke, who many dayes with themselves, and the Busse of Bridgewater was missing. They reported that they left the Vizeadmirall reasonably cleare of the yce, but the other ship they greatly feared, whom they could not come to helpe, being themselves so hardly distressed as never men more. Also they told us of the Gabriel, who having got thorow from the backside, and Western point of the Queenes foreland, into Frobishers straights, fell into their company about the cape of Good hope.

And upon the seven and twentieth of July, the ship of Bridgewater got out of the yce and met with the Fleete which lay off and on under Hattons Hedland. They reported of their marvellous accidents and dangers, declaring their ship to be so leake that they must of necessitie seeke harborow, having their stem so beaten within their huddings, that they had much adoe to keepe themselves above water. They had (as they say) five hundreth strokes at the pump in lesse then halfe a watch, being scarce two houres; their men being so overwearied therewith, and with the former dangers that they desired helpe of men from the other ships. Moreover they declared that there was nothing but yce and danger where they had bene, and that the straights within were frozen up, and that it was the most impossible thing of the world, to passe up unto the Countesse of Warwicks sound, which was the place of our Port.

The report of these dangers by these ships thus published amongst the fleete, with the remembrance of the perils past, and those present before their face, brought no small feare and terror into the hearts of many considerate men. So that some beganne privily to murmure against the Generall for this wilfull maner of proceeding. Some desired to discover some harborow thereabouts to refresh themselves and reforme their broken vessels for a while, untill the North and Northwest windes might disperse the yce, and make the place more free to passe. Other some forgetting themselves, spake more undutifully in this behalfe, saying: that they had as leeve be hanged when they came home, as without hope of safetie to seeke to passe, and so to perish amongst the yce.

The Generall not opening his eares to the peevish passion of any private person, but chiefly respecting the accomplishment of the cause he had undertaken (wherein the chiefe reputation and fame of a Generall and Captaine consisteth) and calling to his remembrance the short time he had in hand to provide so great number of ships their loading, determined with this resolution to passe and recover his Port, or else there to burie himselfe with his attempt.

Notwithstanding somewhat to appease the feeble passions of the fearefuller sort, and the better to entertaine time for a season, whilest the yce might the better be dissolved, he haled on the Fleete with beleefe that he would put them into harborow: thereupon whilest the shippes lay off and on under Hattons Hedland, he sought to goe in with his Pinnesses amongst the Ilandes there, as though hee meant to search for harborowe, where indeede he meant nothing lesse, but rather sought if any Ore might be found in that place, as by the sequele appeared.

In the meane time whilest the Fleete lay thus doubtfull without any certaine resolution what to do, being hard aboord the lee-shore, there arose a sodaine and terrible tempest at the Southsoutheast, whereby the yce began marvellously to gather about us.

Whereupon every man, as in such case of extremitie he thought best, sought the wisest way for his owne safety. The most part of the Fleete which were further shot up within the straights, and so farre to the leeward, as that they could not double the land, following the course of the Generall, who led them the way, tooke in their Sayles, and layde it a hull amongst the yce, and so passed over the storme, and had no extremitie at all, but for a short time in the same place.

Howbeit the other ships which plyed out to Seaward, had an extreme storme for a longer season. And the nature of the place is such, that it is subject diversly to divers windes, according to the sundry situation of the great Alps and mountaines there, every mountaine causing a severall blast, and pirrie, after the maner of a Levant .

In this storme being the sixe and twentieth of July, there fell so much snow, with such bitter cold aire, that we could not scarce see one another for the same, nor open our eyes to handle our ropes and sayles, the snow being above halfe a foote deepe upon the hatches of our ship, which did so wet thorow our poore Mariners clothes, that hee that had five or sixe shifts of apparell had scarce one drie threed to his backe, which kind of wet and coldnesse, togither with the overlabouring of the poore men amiddest the yce, bred no small sicknesse amongst the fleete, which somewhat discouraged some of the poore men, who had not experience of the like before, every man perswading himselfe that the winter there must needes be extreme, where they found so unseasonable a Sommer.

And yet notwithstanding this cold aire, the Sunne many times hath a marvellous force of heate amongst those mountaines, insomuch that when there is no breth of winde to bring the colde aire from the dispersed yce upon us, we shall be wearie of the bloming heate and then sodainely with a perry of winde which commeth downe from the hollownesse of the hilles, we shall have such a breth of heate brought upon our faces as though we were entred within some bathstove or hote-house, and when the first of the pirry and blast is past, we shall have the winde sodainely a new blow cold againe.

In this storme the Anne Francis, the Moone, and the Thomas of Ipswich, who found themselves able to hold it up with a saile, and could double about the Cape of the Queenes foreland, plyed out to the Seaward, holding it for better policie and safetie to seeke Sea roome, then to hazard the continuance of the storme, the danger of the yce, and the leeshoare.

And being uncertaine at this time of the Generals private determinations, the weather being so darke that they could not discerne one another, nor perceive which way he wrought, betooke themselves to this course for best and safest.

The General, notwithstanding the great storme, following his own former resolution, sought by all meanes possible, by a shorter way to recover his Port, and where he saw the yce never so little open, he gate in at one gappe and out at another, and so himselfe valiantly led the way thorow before to induce the Fleete to follow after, and with incredible paine and perill at length gat through the yce, and upon the one and thirtieth of July recovered his long wished Port after many attempts and sundry times being put backe, and came to anker in the Countesse of Warwicks sound, in the entrance whereof, when he thought all perill past, he encountred a great Iland of yce which gave the Ayde such a blow, having a little before wayed her anker a cocke bill, that it stroke the anker flouke through the ships bowes under the water, which caused so great a leake, that with much adoe they preserved the ship from sinking.

At their arrivall here they perceived two ships at anker within the harborough, whereat they began much to marvell and greatly to rejoyce, for those they knew to be the Michael, wherein was the Lieutenant generall Captain Fenton, and the small Barke called the Gabriel, who so long time were missing, and never heard of before, whom every man made the last reckoning, never to heare of againe.

Here every man greatly rejoyced of their happie meeting, and welcommed one another after the Sea manner with their great Ordinance, and when each partie had ripped up their sundry fortunes and perils past, they highly praysed God, and altogither upon their knees gave him due, humble and hearty thankes, and Maister Wolfall a learned man, appointed by her Majesties Councell to be their Minister and Preacher made unto them a godly sermon, exhorting them especially to be thankefull to God for their strange and miraculous deliverance in those so dangerous places, and putting them in mind of the uncertainetie of mans life, willed them to make them selves alwayes readie as resolute men to enjoy and accept thankefully whatsoever adventure his divine Providence should appoint. This maister Wolfall being well seated and setled at home in his owne Countrey, with a good and large living, having a good honest woman to wife and very towardly children, being of good reputation among the best, refused not to take in hand this painefull voyage, for the onely care he had to save soules, and to reforme those Infidels if it were possible to Christianitie: and also partly for the great desire he had that this notable voyage so well begunne, might be brought to perfection: and therefore he was contented to stay there the whole yeare if occasion had served, being in every necessary action as forward as the resolutest men of all. Wherefore in this behalfe he may rightly be called a true Pastor and minister of Gods word, which for the profite of his flocke spared not to venture his owne life.

But to returne againe to Captaine Fentons company, and to speake somewhat of their dangers (albeit they be more then by writing can be expressed) they reported that from the night of the first storme which was about the first day of July untill seven dayes before the Generals arrivall, which was the sixe and twentith of the same, they never saw any one day or houre, wherin they were not troubled with continuall danger and feare of death, and were twentie dayes almost togither fast amongst the yce. They had their ship stricken through and through on both sides, their false stemme borne quite away, and could goe from their ships in some places upon the yce very many miles, and might easily have passed from one Iland of yce to another even to the shore, and if God had not wonderfully provided for them and their necessitie, and time had not made them more cunning and wise to seeke strange remedies for strange kindes of dangers, it had bene impossible for them ever to have escaped: for among other devises, wheresoever they found any Iland of yce of greater bignesse then the rest (as there be some of more then halfe a mile compasse about, and almost forty fadome high) they commonly coveted to recover the same, and thereof to make a bulwarke for their defence, whereon having mored anker, they road under the lee therof for a time, being therby garded from the danger of the lesser driving yce. But when they must needes forgoe this new found fort by meanes of other yce, which at length would undermine and compasse them round about, and when that by heaving of the billow they were therewith like to be brused in peeces, they used to make fast the shippe unto the most firme and broad peece of yce they could find, and binding her nose fast thereunto, would fill all their sayles whereon the winde having great power, would force forward the ship, and so the shippe bearing before her the yce, & so one yce driving forward another, should at length get scope & searoome. And having by this meanes at length put their enemies to flight, they occupyed the cleare place for a prettie season among sundry mountaines and Alpes of yce. One there was found by measure to be 65 fadome above water, which for a kind of similitude, was called Salomons porch. Some thinke those Ilands eight times so much under water as they are above, because of their monstrous weight. But now I remember I saw very strange wonders, men walking, running, leaping and shooting upon the mayne seas 40. myles from any land, without any Shippe or other vessell under them. Also I saw fresh Rivers running amidst the salt Sea a hundred myle from land, which if any man will not beleeve, let him knowe that many of our company leapt out of their Shippe upon Ilandes of yce, and running there up and downe, did shoote at Buts upon the yce, and with their Calivers did kill great Seales, which use to lye and sleepe upon the yce, and this yce melting above at the toppe by reflection of the Sunne, came downe in sundry streames, which uniting together, made a pretie Brooke able to drive a Mill.

The sayde Captaine Fenton recovered his Port tenne dayes before any man, and spent good tyme in searching for Mine, and hee found good store thereof. He also discovered about tenne Miles up into the Countrey, where he perceived neither Towne, Village, nor likelihoode of habitation, but it seemeth (as he sayeth) barren, as the other parts which as yet we have entred upon: but their victuals and provision went so scant with them, that they had determined to returne homeward within seven dayes after, if the Fleete had not then arrived.

The Generall after his arrivall in the Countesses sound, spent no time in vaine, but immediatly at his first landing called the chiefe Captaines of his Councell together, and consulted with them for the speedier execution of such things as then they had in hand. As first, for searching and finding out good Minerall for the Miners to be occupyed on. Then to give good Orders to bee observed of the whole company on shore. And lastly, to consider for the erecting up of the Fort and House for the use of them which were to abide there the whole yeere. For the better handling of these, and all other like important causes in this service, it was ordeined from her Majestie and the Councell, that the Generall should call unto him certaine of the chiefe Captaines and Gentlemen in Councell, to conferre, consult and determine of all occurrents in this service, whose names are as here they follow.

Captaine Fenton. Captaine Carew.
Captaine Yorke.
Captaine Best. Captaine Philpot.

And in Sea causes to have as assistants, Christopher Hall and Charles Jackman, being both very good Pilots, and sufficient Mariners, whereof the one was chiefe Pilot of the Voyage, and the other for the discoverie. From the place of our habitation Westward, Master Selman was appointed Notarie, to register the whole maner of proceeding in these affaires, that true relation thereof might be made, if it pleased her Majestie to require it.

The first of August every Captaine by order, from the Generall and his councell, was commanded to bring ashoare unto the Countesses Iland all such Gentlemen, souldiers, and Myners, as were under their charge, with such provision as they had of victuals, tents, and things necessary for the speedy getting together of Mine, and fraight for the shippes.

The Muster of the men being taken, and the victuals with all other things viewed and considered, every man was set to his charge, as his place and office required. The Myners were appointed where to worke, and the Mariners discharged their shippes.

Upon the second of August were published and proclaymed upon the Countesse of Warwicks Iland with sound of Trumpet, certaine Orders by the Generall and his councell, appoynted to be observed of the company during the time of their abiding there.

In the meane time, whilest the Mariners plyed their worke, the Captaines sought out new Mynes, the Goldfiners made tryall of the Ore, the Mariners discharged their shippes, the Gentlemen for example sake laboured heartily, and honestly encouraged the inferiour sort to worke. So that the small tyme of that little leisure that was left to tarrie, was spent in vaine.

The second of August the Gabriel arrived, who came from the Vizeadmirall, and beeing distressed sore with Yce, put into Harborough neere unto Mount Oxford. And now was the whole Fleete arrived safely at their Port, excepting foure, besides the Shippe that was lost: that is, the Thomas Allen, the Anne Francis, the Thomas of Ipswich, and the Moone, whose absence was some lette unto the workes and other proceedings, aswell for that these Shippes were furnished with the better sorte of Myners, as with other provision for the habitation.

The ninth of August the Generall with the Captaynes of his counsell assembled together, and began to consider and take order for the erecting up of the house or Fort for them that were to inhabite there the whole yeere, and that presently the Masons and Carpenters might goe in hande therewith. First therefore they perused the Bils of lading, what every man received into his Shippe, and found that there was arrived onely the Eastside, and the Southside of the house, and yet not that perfect and entier: for many pieces thereof were used for fenders in many Shippes, and so broken in pieces whilest they were distressed in the yce. Also after due examination had, and true account taken, there was found want of drinke and fuel to serve one hundreth men, which was the number appoynted first to inhabite there, because their greatest store was in the Shippes which were not yet arrived. Then Captaine Fenton seeing the scarcitie of the necessary things aforesayd, was contented, and offred himselfe to inhabite there with sixtie men. Whereupon they caused the Carpenters and Masons to come before them, and demanded in what time they would take upon them to erect up a lesse house for sixtie men. They required eight or nine weekes, if there were Tymber sufficient, whereas now they had but sixe and twentie dayes in all to remayne in that Countrey. Wherefore it was fully agreed upon, and resolved by the Generall and his counsell, that no habitation should be there this yeere. And therefore they willed Master Selman the Register to set downe this decree with all their consents, for the better satisfying of her Majestie, the Lords of the Counsell, and the Adventurers.

The Anne Francis, since shee was parted from the Fleete, in the last storme before spoken of, could never recover above five leagues within the streights, the winde being sometime contrary, and most times the Yce compassing them round about. And from that time, being about the seven and twentieth of July, they could neither heare nor have sight of any of the Fleete, until the 3. of August, when they descryed a sayle neere unto Mount Oxford, with whom when they had spoken, they could understand no newes of any of the Fleete at all. And this was the Thomas of Ipswich, who had layne beating off and on at Sea with very fowle weather, and contrary windes, ever since that foresayd storme, without sight of any man, They kept company not long together, but were forced to loose one another againe, the Moone being consort alwayes with the Anne Francis, and keeping very good company plyed up together into the streights, with great desire to recover their long wished Port: and they attempted as often, and passed as farre as possible the winde, weather, & yce gave them leave, which commonly they found very contrary. For when the weather was cleare and without fogge, then commonly the winde was contrary. And when it was eyther Easterly or Southerly, which would serve their turnes, then had they so great a fogge and darke miste therewith, that eyther they could not discerne way thorow the yce, or els the yce lay so thicke together, that it was impossible for them to passe. And on the other side, when it was calme, the Tydes had force to bring the yce so suddenly about them, that commonly then they were most therewith distressed, having no Winde to cary them from the danger thereof.

And by the sixt of August being with much adoe got up as high as Leicester point, they had good hope to finde the Souther shore cleare, and so to passe up towardes their Port. But being there becalmed and lying a hull openly upon the great Bay which commeth out of the mistaken streights before spoken of, they were so suddenly compassed with yce round about by meanes of the swift Tydes which run in that place, that they were never afore so hardly beset as now. And in seeking to avoyde these dangers in the darke weather, the Anne Francis lost sight of the other two Ships, who being likewise hardly distressed, signified their danger, as they since reported, by shooting off their ordinance, which the other could not heare, nor if they had heard, could have given them any remedie, being so busily occupied to winde themselves out of their owne troubles.

The Fleeboate called the Moone, was here heaved above the water with the force of the yce, and received a great leake thereby. Likewise the Thomas of Ipswich, and the Anne Francis were sore brused at that instant, having their false stemmes borne away, and their ship sides stroken quite through.

Now considering the continuall dangers and contraries, and the little leasure that they had left to tarie in these partes, besides that every night the ropes of their Shippes were so frozen, that a man could not handle them without cutting his handes, together with the great doubt they had of the Fleetes safety, thinking it an impossibilitie for them to passe unto their Port, as well for that they saw themselves, as for that they heard by the former report of the Shippes which had prooved before, who affirmed that the streights were all frozen over within: They thought it now very hie time to consider of their estates and safeties that were yet left together. And hereupon the Captaines and masters of these Shippes, desired the Captaine of the Anne Francis to enter into consideration with them of these matters. Wherefore Captaine Tanfield of the Thomas of Ipswich, with his Pilot Richard Cox, and Captaine Upcote of the Moone, with his master John Lakes came aboorde the Anne Francis the eight of August to consult of these causes. And being assembled together in the Captaines Cabin, sundry doubts were there alledged. For the fearefuller sort of Mariners being overtyred with the continuall labour of the former dangers, coveted to returne homeward, saying that they would not againe tempt God so much, who had given them so many warnings, and delivered them from so wonderfull dangers: that they rather desired to lose wages, fraight, and all, then to continue and follow such desperate fortunes. Againe, their Ships were so leake, and the men so wearie, that to amend the one, and refresh the other, they must of necessitie seeke into harborough.

But on the other side it was argued againe to the contrary, that to seeke into harborough thereabouts, was but to subject themselves to double dangers: if happily they escaped the dangers of Rockes in their entring, yet being in, they were neverthelesse subject there to the danger of the Ice, which with the swift tydes and currents is caryed in and out in most harboroughs thereabouts, and may thereby gaule their Cables asunder, drive them upon the shoare, and bring them to much trouble. Also the coast is so much subject to broken ground and rockes, especially in the mouth and entrance of every Harborough, that albeit the Channell be sounded over and over againe, yet are you never the neerer to discerne the dangers. For the bottome of the Sea holding like shape and forme as the Land, being full of hils, dales, and ragged Rockes, suffreth you not by your soundings to knowe and keepe a true gesse of the depth. For you shall sound upon the side or hollownesse of one Hill or Rocke under water, and have a hundreth, fiftie, or fourtie fadome depth: and before the next cast, yer you shall be able to heave your lead againe, you shall be upon the toppe thereof, and come aground to your utter confusion.

Another reason against going to harborough was, that the colde ayre did threaten a sudden freezing up of the sounds, seeing that every night there was new congealed yce, even of that water which remayned within their shippes. And therefore it should seeme to be more safe to lye off and on at Sea, then for lacke of winde to bring them foorth of harborough, to hazard by sudden frosts to be shut up the whole yeere.

After many such dangers and reasons alledged, and large debating of these causes on both sides, the Captaine of the Anne Francis delivered his opinion unto the company to this effect. First concerning the question of returning home, hee thought it so much dishonorable, as not to grow in any farther question: and againe to returne home at length (as at length they must needes) and not to be able to bring a certaine report of the Fleete, whether they were living or lost, or whether any of them had recovered their Port or not, in the Countesses sound, (as it was to bee thought the most part would if they were living) hee sayde that it would be so great an argument eyther of want of courage or discretion in them, as hee resolved rather to fall into any danger, then so shamefully to consent to returne home, protesting that it should never bee spoken of him, that hee would ever returne without doing his endevour to finde the Fleete, and knowe the certaintie of the Generals safetie. Hee put his company in remembrance of a Pinnisse of five tunne burthen, which hee had within his Shippe, which was caryed in pieces, and unmade up for the use of those which should inhabite there the whole yeere, the which, if they could finde meanes to joyne together, hee offered himselfe to proove before therewith, whether it were possible for any Boate to passe for yce, whereby the Shippe might bee brought in after, and might also thereby give true notice, if any of the Fleete were arrived at their Port or not.

But notwithstanding, for that he well perceived that the most part of his company were addicted to put into harborough, hee was willing the rather for these causes somewhat to encline thereunto. At first, to search alongst the same coast, and the soundes thereabouts, hee thought it to be to good purpose, for that it was likely to finde some of the Fleete there, which being leake, and sore brused with the yce, were the rather thought likely to be put into an yll harborough, being distressed with foule weather in the last storme, then to hazard their uncertaine safeties amongst the yce: for about this place they lost them, and left the Fleete then doubtfully questioning of harborough.

It was likely, also, that they might finde some fitte harborough thereabouts, which might bee behoovefull for them against another time. It was not likewise impossible to finde some Ore or Mine thereabouts wherewithall to fraight their Shippes, which would bee more commodious in this place, for the neerenesse to Seaward, and for a better outlet, then farther within the streights, being likely heere alwayes to loade in a shorter time, howsoever the streight should be pestered with yce within, so that if it might come to passe that thereby they might eyther finde the Fleete, Mine, or convenient harborough, any of these three would serve their present turnes, and give some hope and comfort unto their companies, which now were altogether comfortlesse. But if that all fortune should fall out so contrary, that they could neyther recover their Port, nor any of these aforesayde helpes, that yet they would not depart the Coast, as long as it was possible for them to tary there, but would lye off and on at Sea athwart the place. Therefore his finall conclusion was set downe thus, First, that the Thomas of Ipswich and the Moone should consort and keepe company together carefully with the Anne Francis, as neere as they could, and as true Englishmen and faithfull friends, should supply one anothers want in all fortunes and dangers. In the morning following, every Shippe to send off his Boate with a sufficient Pylot, to search out and sound the harboroughs for the safe bringing in of their Shippes. And beeing arrived in harborough, where they might finde convenient place for the purpose, they resolved foorthwith to joyne and sette together the Pinnesse, wherewithall the Captaine of the Anne Francis might, according to his former determination, discover up into the streights.

After these determinations thus set downe, the Thomas of Ipswich the night following lost company of the other Shippes, and afterward shaped a contrary course homeward, which fell out as it manifestly appeared, very much against their Captaine Master Tanfields minde, as by due examination before the Lordes of her Majesties most honourable privie Counsell it hath since bene prooved, to the great discredite of the Pilot Cox, who specially persuaded his company against the opinion of his sayd Captaine, to returne home.

And as the Captaine of the Anne Francis doeth witnesse, even at their conference togither, Captaine Tanfield tolde him, that he did not a little suspect the sayd Pilot Cox, saying that he had opinion in the man neither of honest duetie, manhoode, nor constancie. Notwithstanding the sayde Shippes departure, the Captaine of the Anne Francis being desirous to put in execution his former resolutions, went with his Shippe boate (being accompanied also with the Moones Skiffe) to proove amongst the Ilands which lye under Hattons Hedland, if any convenient harborough, or any knowledge of the Fleete, or any good Ore were there to be found. The Shippes lying off and on at Sea the while under Sayle, searching through many sounds, they sawe them all full of many dangers and broken ground: yet one there was, which seemed an indifferent place to harborough in, and which they did very diligently sound over, and searched againe.

Here the sayde Captaine found a great blacke Iland, whereunto hee had good liking, and certifying the company thereof, they were somewhat comforted, and with the good hope of his wordes rowed cheerefully unto the place: where when they arrived, they found such plentie of blacke Ore of the same sort which was brought into England this last yeere, that if the goodnesse might answere the great plentie thereof, it was to be thought that it might reasonably suffice all the golde-gluttons of the world. This Iland the Captaine for cause of his good hap, called after his owne name, Bestes blessing, and with these good tydings returning aboord his Ship the ninth of August about teene of the clocke at night, hee was joyfully welcommed of his company, who before were discomforted, and greatly expected some better fortune at his handes.

The next day being the tenth of August, the weather reasonably fayre, they put into the foresayde Harborough, having their Boate for their better securitie sounding before their Shippe. But for all the care and diligence that could bee taken in sounding the Channell over and over againe, the Anne Francis came aground upon a suncken Rocke within the Harborough, and lay thereon more then halfe drye untill the next flood, when by Gods Almighty providence, contrary almost to all expectation, they came afloat againe, being forced all that time to undersette their Shippe with their mayne Yarde, which otherwise was likely to overset and put thereby in danger the whole company. They had above two thousand strokes together at the Pumpe, before they could make their Shippe free of the water againe, so sore shee was brused by lying upon the Rockes. The Moone came safely, and roade at anchor by the Anne Francis, whose helpe in their necessitie they could not well have missed.

Now whilest the Mariners were romaging their Shippes, and mending that which was amisse, the Miners followed their labour for getting together of sufficient quantitie of Ore, and the Carpenters indevoured to doe their best for the making up of the Boate or Pinnesse: which to bring to passe, they wanted two speciall and most necessarie things, that is, certaine principall tymbers that are called Knees, which are the chiefest strength of any Boate, and also nayles, wherewithall to joyne the plancks together. Whereupon having by chance a Smyth amongst them, (and yet unfurnished of his necessary tooles to worke and make nayles withall) they were faine of a gunne chamber to make an Anvile to worke upon, and to use a pickaxe in stead of a sledge to beate withall, and also to occupy two small bellowes in steade of one payre of greater Smiths bellowes. And for lacke of small Yron for the easier making of the nayles, they were forced to breake their tongs, grydiron, and fireshovell in pieces.

The eleventh of August the Captaine of the Anne Francis taking the Master of his Shippe with him, went up to the toppe of Hattons Hedland, which is the highest land of all the streights, to the ende to descry the situation of the Countrey underneath, and to take a true plotte of the place, whereby also to see what store of Yce was yet left in the streights, as also to search what Mineral matter or fruits that soyle might yeeld: And the rather for the honour the said Captaine doeth owe to that Honourable name which himselfe gave thereunto the last yeere, in the highest part of this Hedland he caused his company to make a Columne or Crosse of stone, in token of Christian possession. In this place there is plentie of Blacke Ore, and divers pretie stones.

The seventeenth of August the Captaines with their companies chaced and killed a great white Beare, which adventured and gave a fierce assault upon twentie men being weaponed. And he served them for good meate many dayes.

The eighteenth of August the Pinnesse with much adoe being set together, the sayd Captaine Best determined to depart up the streights, to proove and make tryall, as before was pretended, some of his company greatly persuading him to the contrary, and specially the Carpenter that set the same together, who sayde that hee would not adventure himselfe therein for five hundreth pounds, for that the boate hung together but onely by the strength of the nayles, and lacked some of her principall knees and tymbers.

These wordes somewhat discouraged some of the company which should have gone therein. Whereupon the Captaine, as one not altogether addicted to his owne selfe-will, but somewhat foreseeing how it might be afterwards spoken, if contrary fortune should happen him (Lo he hath followed his owne opinion and desperate resolutions, and so thereafter it is befallen him) calling the Master and Mariners of best judgement together, declared unto them how much the cause imported him in his credite to seeke out the Generall, as well to conferre with him of some causes of weight, as otherwise to make due examination and tryall of the goodnesse of the Ore, whereof they had no assurance but by gesse of the eye, and it was well like the other: which so to cary home, not knowing the goodnesse thereof, might be as much as if they should bring so many stones. And therefore hee desired them to deliver their plaine and honest opinion, whether the Pinnesse were sufficient for him so to adventure in or no. It was answered, that by carefull heede taking thereunto amongst the yce, and the foule weather, the Pinnesse might suffice. And hereupon the Masters mate of the Anne Francis called John Gray, manfully and honestly offering himselfe unto his Captaine in this adventure and service, gave cause to others of his Mariners to follow the attempt.

And upon the nineteenth of August the sayd Captaine being accompanied with Captaine Upcote of the Moone, and eighteene persons in the small Pinnesse, having convenient portion of victuals and things necessary, departed upon the sayd pretended Voyage, leaving their shippe at anchor in a good readiness for the taking in of their fraight. And having little winde to sayle withall, they plyed alongst the Souther shore, and passed above 30. leagues, having the onely helpe of mans labour with Oares, and so intending to keepe that shore aboord until they were got up to the farthest and narrowest of the streights, minded there to crosse over, and to search likewise alongst the Northerland unto the Countesses sound, and from thence to passe all that coast along, whereby if any of the Fleet had bene distressed by wrecke of rocke or yce, by that meanes they might be perceived of them, and so they thereby to give them such helpe and reliefe as they could. They did greatly feare, and ever suspect that some of the Fleete were surely cast away, and driven to seeke sowre sallets amongst the colde cliffes.

And being shotte up about fortie leagues within the Streights, they put over towardes the Norther shore, which was not a little dangerous for their small boates. And by meanes of a sudden flawe were dryven, and faine to seeke harborough in the night amongst all the rockes and broken ground of Gabriels Ilands, a place so named within the streights above the Countesse of Warwicks sound: And by the way where they landed, they did finde certaine great stones set up by the Countrey people as it seemed, for markes, where they also made many Crosses of stone, in token that Christians had bene there. The 22. of August they had sight of the Countesses sound, and made the place perfect from the toppe of a hill, and keeping along the Norther shore, perceived the smoke of a fire under a hils side: whereof they diversly deemed. When they came neere the place, they perceived people which wafted unto them, as it seemed, with a flagge or ensigne. And because the Countrey people had used to doe the like, when they perceived any of our boats to passe by, they suspected them to be the same. And comming somewhat neerer, they might perceive certaine tents, and discerne this ensigne to be of mingled colours, blacke and white, after the English fashion. But because they could see no Shippe, nor likelihood of harborough within five or sixe leagues about, and knewe that none of our men were woont to frequent those partes, they could not tell what to judge thereof, but imagined that some of the ships being carried so high with the storme and mistes, had made shipwracke amongst the yce or the broken Islands there, and were spoyled by the countrey people, who might use the sundry coloured flagge for a policie, to bring them likewise within their danger. Whereupon the sayd Captaine with his companies, resolved to recover the same ensigne, if it were so, from those base people, or els to lose their lives, and all together. In the ende they discerned them to be their countreymen, and then they deemed them to have lost their Ships, and so to be gathered together for their better strength. On the other side, the company ashoare feared that the Captaine having lost his Shippe, came to seeke forth the Fleete for his reliefe in his poore Pinnisse, so that their extremities caused eche part to suspect the worst.

The Captaine now with his Pinnisse being come neere the shoare, commanded his Boate carefully to be kept aflote, lest in their necessitie they might winne the same from him, and seeke first to save themselves: for every man in that case is next himselfe. They haled one another according to the manner of the Sea, and demaunded what cheere? and either partie answered the other, that all was well: whereupon there was a sudden and joyfull outshoote, with great flinging up of caps, and a brave voly of shotte to welcome one another. And truely it was a most strange case to see how joyfull and gladde every partie was to see themselves meete in safetie againe, after so strange and incredible dangers: Yet to be short, as their dangers were great, so their God was greater.

And here the company were working upon new Mines, which Captaine Yorke being here arrived not long before, had found out in this place, and it is named the Countesse of Sussex Mine.

After some conference with our friends here, the Captaine of the Anne Francis departed towards the Countesse of Warwicks sound, to speake with the Generall, and to have tryall made of such mettall as he had brought thither, by the Goldfiners. And so he determined to dispatch againe towards his ship. And having spoken with the General, he received order for all causes, and direction as well for the bringing up of his Shippe to the Countesses sound, as also to fraight his Ship with the same Oare which he himselfe had found, which upon triall made, was supposed to be very good.

The 23. of August, the sayd Captaine mette together with the other Captaines (Commissioners in counsell with the Generall) aboorde the Ayde, where they considered and consulted of sundry causes, which being particularly registred by the Notarie, were appoynted where and how to be done against another yeere.

The 24. of August, the Generall with two Pinnisses and good numbers of men went to Beares sound, commanding the sayde Captaine with his Pinnesse to attend the service, to see if he could encounter or apprehend any of the people: for sundry times they shewed themselves busie thereabouts, sometimes with seven or eyght Boates in one company, as though they minded to encounter with our company which were working there at the Mines, in no great numbers. But when they perceived any of our Shippes to ryde in that roade (being belike more amazed at the countenance of a Shippe, and a more number of men) they did never shewe themselves againe there at all. Wherefore our men sought with their Pinnisses to compasse about the Iland where they did use, supposing there suddenly to intercept some of them. But before our men could come neere, having belike some watch in the toppe of the mountaines, they conveyed themselves privily away, and left (as it should seeme) one of their great dartes behinde them for haste, which we found neere to a place of their caves and housing. Therefore, though our Generall were very desirous to have taken some of them to have brought into England , they being now growen more wary by their former losses, would not at any time come within our dangers. About midnight of the same day, the captaine of the Anne Francis departed thence and set his course over the streights towards Hattons Hedland, being about 15. leagues over, and returned aboord his Shippe the 25. of August, to the great comfort of his company, who long expected his comming, where hee found his Shippes ready rigged and loden. Wherefore he departed from thence againe the next morning towards the Countesses sound, where he arrived the 28. of the same. By the way he set his Miners ashore at Beares sound, for the better dispatch and gathering the Ore togither: for that some of the ships w