« AnteriorContinuar »
they gave whatever the purchaser was inclined to ask them.-But because I felt this to be an unjust species of traffic, I forbid it; and gave them many useful and beautiful articles which I had brought along with me, without any return being asked that I might render them more friendly to me that I might gain them over to the christian faith-that they might be well affected towards our King, Queen, nobles, and the whole Spanish people, and might search out for those things in which themselves abound, and of which we are much in want, and Jaying up stores of them, have where-withal to enter into traffic with us. They have no idolatry amongst them;-but seem to have a firm persuasion, that all force, power, and all good things are from Heaven, from whence indeed they imagined that I had come down with my ships and sailors; as I discovered from them, after they had so far lost their apprehensions as to converse with us. They are neither sluggish, nor rude,ếon the contrary they are of an intelligent and piercing mind; and the relations which those of them who ferry across the seas give of the various particulars which they have seen, are very distinct and lively.--But none of them had ever before seen any people clothed, or ships such as ours. As soon as I had come into that sea, I carried off by force from the first island which I reached, a few of the inhabitants, who might be instructed by us, and instruct us in the course of our voyage, concerning the matters with which they were conversant; -and the plan turned out remarkably well. In a very short time, we understood them, and they us by gestures and signs, and even words;-and they were of very great use
They never, however, gave up the impression, however long they remained with us (and indeed they still are with us) that I had lighted down from Heaven;-and they spread the liotion wherever we landed-calling out with a loud voice, which was repeated from one to another-come, come and you will see a race of ethereal people!-The consequence has been, that laying aside their fears formerly entertained, vast crowds of men and women, children and adults, young and old, came round us from all quar. ters; some offering us meat, others drink, with the utmost and most incredible kindness.-All these Islands possuss many boats made of solid wood, and although very narrow, yet resembling our boats both in length and form, only considerably more rapid in their course.—They are managed by oars only. Some of them are large, others small, and others again of a middling size. With the larger ones they pass from one island to another, and carry on a traffic throughout them all, innumerable as they are. I have seen some of these boats or barges which carried seventy or eighty rowers. In all these islands there is no diversity in the appearance of the people; their manners and speech are alikeso that they all understand one another;—a circumstance pecu. liarly important for the purpose which our most Serene King had principally in view-their conversion, I mean to the holy faith of Christ. As far as I can make out, they are very far from being disinclined to it. I already mentioned how I coasted along the island Joanna 322 miles to the east; and I am persuaded, from what I saw and heard, that this island is greater than England and Scotland together. It contains two other provinces which I did not see, one of which the Indians call Anan, where there are men with tails-and that province is 180 miles long, according to the report of those Indians whom I carry along with me, and who are very well acquainted with these islands. The circumference of Hispana I take to be greater than that of all Spain, a Cologna usque ad fontem rabidum—if I may reckon as a fourth of the whole, that side, which I passed along in a right line from west to east, about 546' miles. On this island of Hispana, although I had solemnly taken possession of all these islands in the name of our invincible King--I yet fixed upon a spot more advantageous than any other for commerce, and every opportunity of wealth-with a view to the erection of a metropolis, to which I have given the name of our Lord's Nativity--and of which, in a more peculiar manner, I have taken possession for the King. There I immediately gave orders for the building a fort, which will soon be finished in which as many nien as may be necessary, with all sorts of arms, and more than a year's provision, may be left. Here likewise I shall establish a carpenter's workshop, and leave people skilled, not only in this, but in other arts, partly on account of the great friendship and kindness which I have experienced from the king of this island, the inhabitants of which have been most amiable and well-affected; and the king has even gloried in styling me his brother. If they should change their dispositions, they yet cannot hurt those who are left in the fort, however desisous they might be of doing so. They have a great dread of arms--are themselves naked, and remarkably timid--so that the possessors of the fort may in fact be said to possess the whole island, without any hazard to themselves, if they will keep within the laws and regulations which. I have prescribed for them. In all these islands, according to my information, no man has more than one wife, except the Chiefs and Kings, who may have as many as twenty. The women seem to work more than the men; and I have not been able to discover, whether there is any such thing as separate property; for I have always seen these people impart to each other whatever they had, particularly food, and things of that sort. I found no monsters aimong them, as some have imagined, but every where men of a very estimable and benign aspect. Neither are they black, like the Africans: their hair is smooth and long. Indeed, they do not live in a country where the solar rays are particularly powerful, being distant from the equator about six and twenty degrees. The cold is very severe on the tops of the mountains. Yet the Indians of these regions
prevent its most disagreeable effects, partly by the use of very high-seasoned food, of which they are extremely fond; and cuscom inures them to the climate. There are then, as I have said, no monsters, at least that I saw; and the only information I received of any such, was of the inhabitants of an island called Charis, which, tự those who are sailing for India, follows second in order immediately after the island of Hispana. This people are looked upon by their neighbours as very ferocious, so as even to eat human flesh. They have many various sorts of boats, with which they pass into all the Indian islands, and carry off whatever they lay their hands on. They differ in no respect in appearance from the other islanders, except that they have long hair like woinen. They make use of bows, and cane spears with whetted points, fixed, as I have already described, in the thicker part. From their ferocity, they are objects of great terror to the rest of the Indians; but, for my part, they do not seem to me more formidable than the others. They cohabit with a race of women who are the sole inhabitants of another island immediately succeeding Hispana, as you sail for India. These women are not employed in the common occupations of their sex, but, like their husbands, carry bows and spears, and are protected by plates of brass, with which their island abounds. I have been told that there is another island still larger than Hispana: its inhabitants have no spears—but, like all the others, are overflowing with gold. Some of the inhabitants of this, and of the other islands which I have seen, I have along with me, who confirm, by their testimony, the above particulars.
To conclude with summing up, in a few words, the advantages to be derived from this our short voyage and speedy return-I may fairly promise, that I can supply our invincible sovereigos, if I am supported by their kind assistance, with as much gold as they can have occasion for--and as great a quantity of aromatics and aloes and rhubarb, as their Majesties may think proper to require. I have no doubt that these will be collected in great abundance by the men whom I have left in the fort—for I myself made no longer stay than the winds forced me--except the time that I remained in the city of the Nativity while the fort was building, and I was providing for the safety of those who were to be left. These are very great, and, as yet, unheard of advantages; but they might he much further extended, if, as would be reasonable, a supply of ships should be given me. This great and wonderful field of discovery is far beyond our nierit, and can correspond only to the magnificence of the Christian Faith, and to the piety and religion of our Sovereigns. It is not the accomplishment of an human intellect, but is truly the gift of the Divine Mind. It is not unusual indeed with (iod to listen to the entreaties of his servants who love his precepts, even when they seem to be asking impossibilities-as appears to have been his dealing with us who have been perVOL. IX.
mitted to perform, what the powers of men had never before so much as bordered upon. For whatever may have been hinted in former times of the existence of these islands, either in writings or in discourse, it is certain that it was only by obscure conjecture, and that no one ever asserted that he had seen them; and accord. ingly, their existence appeared merely fabulous. Let then our King and Queen, their Nobles, and all their happy realms--and indeed all the nations of Christendom, return thanks to our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ; because he has magnified us with so great bounty and victory;-let solemn processions and other holy offices be celebrated; and let the temples be veiled with festive boughs. Glory be henceforth to Christ on the earth, as there is glory in the Hcavens-for he is advancing forth to bring salvation to the perishing souls of the Heathen. Let us too rejoice, both on account of the exaltation of our Faith, and of the increase of our temporal advantages, in which not only Spain but all Christendom will participate. This then is a short narration of our performances. Farewell.--Lisbon, the day before the Ides of March.
We subjoin the MS. note describing the volume from which the above letter is extracted.
• Constat foliolis novem in go vel 40 parvo. Fol. primo recto habentur insignia Regis Hispaniar. cum Inscriptione Reg. Hispaniæ; eod. verso tabula exhibens Occanicam elassem. Fol. 2do recto Epistolae initium cum titulo supra relato cui praemittuntur haec verba char. maj. De Insulis Inventis. Eodem fol. 2. verso tabula exhibens Insulam Hyspanam. Fol. 3. recto sequitur Epistola, eodem verso tabula exhibens Insulas Fernandam, Isabellam, &c. Fol. 4. sequitur textus. Fol. 5. recto iteratur tabula exhibens Oceanicam classem. eod. verso, uti et fol. 6o. sequitur textus. Fol. 70, verso tabula exhibens Insulam Hyspanam. Deinde sequitur textus usque ad gm fol. rectum quo Epistola absolvitur ab. sque ulla nota typograph. char. est Gothicus nitidus. Lineae in qualibet pag. 27. Desunt custodes et numeri paginar. Fol. 1m. 2m. 3m. et 41. prae se ferunt signaturas i, ij, iij. Tabulae ligno exculptae, sed satis elegantes. Initiales literae minio pictae.
Editionem hanc, quae Saci est XV. nullibi descriptam invenis mus. Edition. alteram Saci pariter XV. memorat Fossius (F. 1. p. 561) sed ab hac nostra plane diversam, utpote quae quatuor solumo plagulis constat, tabulis caret, &c. ART. VII.-- Intelligence in Science, Literature, and the Arts. IN a
which there was an ingenious attempt to prove, that Sir Philip Francis was the author of Junius' Letters. We attach as little importance to the question as any of our readers; but, as another still more authoritative attempt has lately been made by Mr. Chalmers, we feel ourselves under some obligation to report his success. His publication extends to one hundred and fifteen pages; and he thinks he has fastened the authorship
upon Hugh Boyd, by a concatenation of circumstances, amounting to moral demonstration. The testimony of Mr. Boyd's wife seems to be almost conclusive.
• Mrs. Boyd, who is a sensible and a discreet woman, says, 1st, That at the end of the year 1768 Mr. Boyd commenced his correspondence with the Public Advertiser; and on the 21st of January, 1769, the first letter of Junius appeared in that paper: that in 1769 and 1770 he also wrote occasionally in the same paper, under the signatures of Lucius and Brutus; and he sometimes sent communications to H. S. Woodfall, without any signature at all. Secondly, She says that in January, 1769, Mr. Boyd was at great pains in accustoming himself to disguise his hand-writing; and showing her slips of paper, he used to ask her whether she thought he had disguised his hand sufficiently; to which she said, he had su completely disguised his hand, that none but those very well acquainted with his common hand would suspect the writing to be his. Thirdly, She says, that Mr. Boyd, notwithstanding her intreaties, would not take in the Public Advertiser, while Junius was published in it, during the years 1769 and 1770; yet he himself always manifested much solicitude to see the letters of Junius, and would tell with animation, that Junius was announced for to-morrow. Fourthly, She says, that during 1769 and 1770, Boyd continued to send letters secretly to the Public Advertiser almost every week, superscribed in his disguised hand; and at this tiine he used eagerly to seek opportunities of introducing the subject of Junius; and whatever their private conversation might be, they always ended with Junius. Fifthly, After the publication of Junius's letter to the king, Boyd used to redouble his arts of secresy; and would sometimes take her out a walking, and would slily put a packet in some penny-post office, at a distance from Woodfall's office; and would at other tnnes ask her, taking his packet out of his pocket, to carry it to Woodfall's letter-box, at the corner of Ivy-lanc; and often, when they returned home from such walks, she would hint to him that she suspected he was Junius; but to this be would make no reply, but turn the conversation. Sometimes he would write under other signatures, and ask her to copy what he had written, and send such copy to the printer. Sixthly, She says, that in June, 1771, Mr. Boyd took a house at Ruston Green, near Harrow, when Junius's controversy with Mr. Horne began, and Mr. Boyd manifested the same eagerness about it; and while it lasted, he used to write every forenoon; and when he had finished what he had written, he would walk with it to London, and return the same day; and he used to say, that Mr. Horne was an able reasoner, but that Junius, notwithstanding, had the better of him. Seventhly, She further says, that in November, 1771, Boyd borrowed, from a neighbour of his at Ruston Green, several law-books and state-trials, which he daily read, with seeming much attention, for the purpose, as she thinks, of supporting the charge of Junius against Lord Mansfield for admitting Eyre to bail, the result whereof appeared in Junius's letter to Lord Chief Justice Mansfield, of the 21st of January, 1772; and that about three weeks after the publication of that letter Boyd went to Ireland, and Junius ceased to write under this signature in the Public Advertiser, when he was extremely embarrassed in his circumstances. Eighthly, She also says, that during the same year (1772) Junius's Letters were republished in a book, with a dedication, preface, and notes; which publication seemed to relieve Mr. Boyd's mind from a burden; and that, after that publication, he never was at so much pains to conceal from her the contents of the letters which he occasionally transmitted to the Public Advertiser. Ninthly, She moreover says, that on the