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Proofs to ascertain that America was first discovered by the ancient Britons*.


ROM the testimonies of travel- most part of those he had taken with

lers and hiitorians, there are him bevind, (Sir Thomas Herbert says Itrong reasons to believe that the an- that the number he left behind was cient Britons landed on the Conti. 120,) and returned to North Wales. nent of America nearly 300 years be. Upon his arrival, he described to his fore Behaim or Columbus; lo that if friends what a fair and extensive land a first discovery gives a right of pos. he had met with, void of any inhabi. session, the whole Continent belongs to tants, whilst they employed themselves, the ancient Buitons.

and all their skill to supplant one anI cannot, in Giraldus, find any other, for only a ragged 'portion of shing upon the subject. He flourished rocks and mouótains. Accordingly, about the time when this fuppoled having prevailed with confiderable discovery was made; that is, during numbers to accompany him to that ahe reigns of Henry the II Richard country, he failed back with ten ships, th: I. and John, kings of E:gland, and bid adieu to his native land.

The firit account that I can find The next account I have met with of the discovery of America by the of this event is in Hakluyt. Britoos is in an hiftory of Wales writ “ After the death of Owen Gwyten by Caradoc of Llancaryan, Gla- nedd, his sonnes fell at debate who

morganshire, in the British language, thould inherit after him, for the eldest ! translated into English by Humphryfonne bern in matrim ny, Edward or

Llwyd, and published by Dr David Jorwerth Drwidion (Drwyndwn) was Powel in the year 1584.

counted unméet to govern because of This narrative bears the strongest the maime upon his face, and Howel sen;blance of truth, for it is plain, na that took upon him the rule, was a tural, and simple. It fays, that on the base fonne, begotten upon an Irish wodeath of Owen Gwynedd, Prince of man. Therefore David, another North Wales, about the year 1169, sonne, gathered all the power he several of his children contended for could, and came againft Howel, and his dominions; that Madog, one of fighting with him, flew him, and afterhis sons, perceiving his native country ward's enjoyed quietly the whole lands engaged, or on the eve of being en- of North Wales, until his brother Jorgaged, in a civil war, thought it beft werth's fonne came to age. to try his furtune in fime foreign Madoc, another of Owen Gwyneth's climes. Leaving North Wales in a fonnes, left the land in contention beVery unsettled flate, he failed with a twix; his brethren, and prepared cerfew ships which he had fitted up and tain Mips with men and munition, and manned for that purpose to the west- fought adventures by seas, sailing weft, ward, leaving Ireland to the north. and leaving the coast of Ireland so far He came at length to an unknown north, that he came to a laod unknown, country, where most things appeared where he saw many ftrange things. to him new and uncuítonary, and the This land must needs be some parts manners of the natives far different of the countrey of which the Spanfrom what he had seen in Europe.- yards affirm themselves to be the firft Madog having viewed the fertility and finders since Hanno's timne : where uppleafantness of the country, left the on it is manifelt that that countrey

B VOL. XIV. No. 79.

* From “ An Inquiry concerning the First Discovery of America, by the Europeans ; by John Williams, L.L. D.”


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was by Britons discovered long before to that porpose, that Arthur, fona Columbus led any Spanyards thi: her. time King of Briain, had both know

Of the royage and re'urn of this ledge of those parts (ihe New World) Madoc, there be many fables framed, and some dominion in them; for they as the common people do use in distance find (as some report) that King Arof place and length of time, rather to thur had under his government many augment than to diminish, but sure it islands and great countries towards the is, there he was. And after he had north and west, which one of fome returned home, and declared the plea- fpecial note hath interpreted to figuifant and fruitful countries that he had fy America, and the northern parts seen, without inhabitants; and upon thereof, and thereupon have gone athe contrary, for what barren and wild bout to entitle the Queen of England ground his brethren and nephews did (Elizabeth) to be the Soveraigne of murther one another, he prepared these provinces by right of descent a number of fhips, and got with him from King Arihur. But the wisdom such men and women as

were delir

of our state has been iuch as to ne ous to live in quietness, and taking glect that opinion, imagining it to be leave of his friends, touk bis journey grounded upon fabulous foundations, thitherwards again.

As many things are that are afierted of Therefore it is supposed that he and King Arthur.

King Arthur. Only this doth convey his people inhabited part of those some shew with it, thai, now some countries; for it appeareth by Francis hundred years, there was a knight of Lopez de Gomara that in Acuzamil

, Wales, who, with shipping, and some and other places, the people honour pretty company, did go to discover ed the Cross. Whereby it may be these parts, whereof, as there is some gathered that Christians had been there record of reasonable credit amor gł before the c ming of the Spanyards; the monuments of Wales, so there is but because this people were not many, nothing which giveth pregnant hew they followed the manner of the land thereunto, that in the late navigations which they came to, and the language of fome of our Menta Norumbega, and they found here.

fome other northern paris of AmeriThis Madoc arriving in that weft. ca, they found fome tokens of civility ern.countrey, unto the which he came and Chriftian religion ; but especially in the year 1179, left most of his peo- they do meet with some words of the ple there, and returning back for more Willa language, as that a bird with a of his own nation, as quaintance, and white head should be called Penguinn, friends, io inhabit that fair and large and other such like; yet becaufe we countrey, went thi' her again with ten have now invincible certainty thereof, failes, as I find poteuby Guitun Owen. and if any thing were done, it was on: I am of opinion that the land whereun: ly in the northern and worse part, to he came was


of the West and the intercourse between Wales Indies."

and those parts in the space of 700 Another writer who alludes to Ma- years, was not continued, but quite fidog's voyage is the author of a book lenced, we may go forward with that entitled "a brief description of the opinion that these Weitern Indies whole world,” edit. 5th.-- London, were no way known to former ages." Printed for John Marriott, 1620. The next account of Prince Ma

“ I am not ignorant that some who dog's adventures I have met with is make too much of vain shews, and of in Hornius De Originibus Americathe British antiquities, have given out nis. Hagæ Cummitis, 1652. What to the world, and written fune things he hath advanced is much the fame,


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and contains little more, as he himself old Britons) and took me up by the fay;, than extract; frɔm Llivyd, midlie, and told me in the British Hakluyt, and Powel.

tongue, I ihould not die, and thereIn the Gentle nåa’s Magazine, Vol. upon went to the Emperor of TuscoX. for the year 1940. p. 103, &c. rara, and agreed for my ransom, and the following narrative is inseried : the men that were with me. They

“ These prefents may certify all then welcomed us to their town, and persons whatever, that in the yeir 'entertained us very civilly and cor1665, being an inhabitant of Virgi- dially four months ; during which time nia, and Chaplain to Major General I had the opportunity of converfing Benoet of Manfoman County, the with them familiarly in the British said Major Bennet and Sir William language, and did preach to them Berkeley sene iwo ships to Port Roy. three times a week in the same lanal, now called South Carolina, which guage; and they would confer with is fixty leagues to the fouthward of me about any thing that was difficult Capcfair, and I was sent therewith to therein; and at our departure, they be their Minister. Upon the 8th of abundantly supplied us with whatever April we set out from Virginia, and was necessary to our support and wellarrived at the harbour's mɔúth of doing. They are settled upon PontiPort Royal the 19th of the same month, go River, not far from Cape Atros. where we waited for the rest of the This is a brief recital of my travels, Meet that was to fail from Barbadoes among the Doeg Indians. Morgan and Bermuda with one Mr West, who Jones, the son of John Jones of Bafatvas to be Deputy Governor of the leg, near Newport; in the county of faid place. As soon as the fleet came Monmouth. I am ready to conduct in, the smallest vessels that were with any Welshmani, or others to the counus failed up the river to a place call. try. New York, March 10, 1685-6. ed the Oylter Point. There I con This letter was sent or given to Dr tinued about 3 months, all which time Thomas Lloyd of Pensylvania, by being almost starved for want of pro- whom it was transmitted to Charles vitions, I and five more travelled thato' Llwyd Esq. of D51 y frân in Monigothe Wilderness, till we came to the meryshire; and afterwards to Dr RoTuscoiara country. There the Tuf- bert Plott by Edward Llwyd, A. M. corata Indians took us prisoners, be- Keeper of the Athmolean Museum in cause we told them that we were bound Oxford, to Roanock. That night they carried A letter written by Charles Lloyd, us to their town, and shut us up clofe Efq. of Döl y från, in Montgomeryto our no small dread. The next fhire, published in 1777, by the Rev. day they entered into a consultation N. Owen, junr. A. M. in a pamphabout 15, which, after it was over, let entitled, “ . British Remains," their interpreter told us that we must strongly confirms Mr Jones's narraa prepare ourselves to die next morn iive, and of consequence, the truta

Whereupon being very much of Madog's voyages. Mr Lloyd says, dejected and speaking to this effect in in a letter, that he had been informthe British tongue,

36. Have I escaped ed by a friend, that one Stedman of ss so many dangers, and must I now Breconhire, about 30 years before " be knocked on the head like a the date of his letter, was on the

dog;" then presently an Indian coast of America in a Dutch botcame to me, which afterwards ap- tom, and being about to 'la:d fur re. peared to be a War Captain belonging freshment, the natives kept them off to the Saciem of the Doegs, (whos. by force, till ar last this Stedman original I find must needs be from the told his fellow Dutch seamen that he B 2


understood what the natives spoke. Gwyneth, A. D. 1170, and a baf The Dutch bade him speak to them, tard having carried it from his lawful and they were thereupon very cour- fons, one of he latter, called Madog, teous ; they supplied them with the put to sea for new discoveries, and best things they had, and told Sted- failing Weit froa Spain, he discoverman, that they came from a country ed a new world of wonderful beauty called Gwynedd, (North Wales) in and fertility. But finding this uninPrydanı (Prydain fawr, Great Bri- habited, upon his return, he carried tain. It is supposed by Mr Lloyd thither a great number of people from that this place was situated between Wales. To this delightful count: y Virginia and Florida. It is farther he made three voyages, according !! faid by this Gentleman, that one Hakluyt. The places he discoverid Oliver Humphreys, a merchant, who seem to be Virginia, New England, died, not long before the dare of this and thie adjacent countries. In conletter, told him, that when he lived at firmation of this, Peter Martyr fays Surinam, he spoke with an English that the natives of Virginia and Guaprivateer or Pirate, who being near timala celebrated the memory of one Florida a careening his veífel, had Madoc as a great and ancient hero, learnt, as he thought, the Indian lan- . aisd hence it came to pass thať moguage, which his friend said was per- dern travellers have found several fect Welsh. o

My brother, Mr Lloyd old British words among the inhabiadds, having, beard this, (Mr Jones's tints of North America; Matec adventures) and meeting with this Zunga and Mat Inga as being in use Jones at New York, desired him to among the Guatimallians, in which write it, with his own hand, in his there is a plain allusion to Madoc, and house; and to please ine and my cou- that with the D softened into T, acsin Thomas Price (of Lianyyllin) he cording to the Welsh manner of prosent me the original. This Jones liv. nunciation. Nay, Bishop Nicolson, ed within 12 miles of Now. York, and seems to believe ihat the Welsh lanwas contemporary with me and my guage makes a confiderable part of fe. brother at Oxford. He was of Jesus veral of the American tongues. AcCollege, and called thea Senior Jones cording to a f:mous British anciquary, by way of distinction."

the Spaniards borrowed their double The Hight of Jones this gentleman L. (LL) from the people of Mexico, supposes to have taken place about the whù received it from the Welsh ; and. time of Bacon's Rebellion in Virginia, the Dutch brought a bird with a white and that he was with the Indians a- head' from the Streights of Magellan, bout the year 1669.

called by the natives Penguin, which The date of Mr Llyod's letter is word in the Old British (and in moDolobran, 8'm 14 D, .

dern British) fignifies “ white head ;" To these evidences must be added and therefore seems originally to what the authors of the universal hishave come from Wales. This must tory have said:

be allowed an additional argument, to is That the Welsh contributed to. omit others that occur in favour of wards the peopling of America is in- Madoc's three American expeditimated by some good authors, and tions." ought to be considered as a notion

Mr Charles Beatty, a missionary, supported by something more than from New York, accompanied by a. bare conjectures. Powel, in his his- Mr Daffield, visited some inland parts tory of Wales, informs us that a war of North America in the year 1766. happening in that country for the fuc-. If I rightly understand his journal, he cession, upon the death of Owen travelled about 400 or 500 miles, to


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ehe South West of New York. Dur. did not agree with him, or for some ing his tour he met with several per- other reason, resolved to return fons who had been among the Indians Virginia, and accordingly set out by: from their youth, or who had been land, accompanied by foine other per. taken captives by them, and lived fons : but travelling thro' the back with them feveral years. Among parts of the country which was very others one Benjamin Sutton, who thinly inhabited, fuppofing, very prohad visited different nations, and had bibly, this was the nearest way, he lived many years with them. His fell in with a party of Indian warriors account, in Mr Beatty's words, was going to attack the inhabitants of Viras follows:

ginia, against whom they had declared “ He, (Benjamin Sutton) informed us, when he was with the Chactaw The Indians, upon examining the nation, or tribes of Indians at the clerzyman, and finding that he was goMilfillipi, he went to an Indian town ing to Virginia, looked upon him

confiderable distance from New and his companions as belonging to Orleans, whofe inhabitants were of Virginia, and therefore took them all different complexions; not so tawny as prisoners, and let them know they those of the other Indians, and who mut die. The clergyman in preparfpoke Welsh. He said he saw a book ation for another world went to pray. among them, which he supposed was er, and being a Welih-man, prayed a Weith Bible, which they carefully in the Welsh language, pofibly bekept wrapped up in a skin, but they cause this language was nioit familiar could not read it, and that he heard to him, or to prevent the Indians un." fume of these Iudians afterwards in derstanding him. One or more of the the lower Sha wanaugh town' speak party of the Indians was much surWelsh with one Lewis a Welsh-man, prised to hear him pray in their lancaptive there,

This Welsh tribe now guage. Upon this they fpoke to him, live on the Welt-fide of the Misfillipi and finding that he could understand river, a great way above New Or- their speech, they got the sentence of leans.

death reversed; and this happy cirLevi Hicks—as being among the cumstance was the means of saving his Indians from his youth, told us he life. had been, when attending an embaffy They took him back with them inin a town of Indians, on the West to their country, where he found á fide of the Millisipi river, who talked tribe whole native language was Welih, (as he was told, for he did Welsh, though the dialect was a little not underitand them); and, our inter- different from his own, which he preter Jofeph faw fome Indians whom foon came to understaod. They he supposed to be of the fame ihewed him a book, which he found tribe, who talked Welsh, for he to be the bible, but which they could told us some of the words they said, not read ; and fif I m itake no, his which he knew to be Welth, as he ability to read it tended to raise their had been acquainted with some Welsh regard for him. people.

He stayed among them fome time, Correspondent hereto, I have been and endeavoured to instruct them in informed that many years ago, a

the Christian Religion. He at length clergyman went from Britain to Vir- proposed to go back to his own counginia, - and having lived some time try, and return to them with some there, went from thence to South Ca. other teachers, who would be able to roliga; but either because the climate instruct taem in their own language ;


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