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and distress, which carry us with them as the narrative advances. These, while they interest the feelings, invigorate the mind. They convince the understanding, also, that although, in this world of vicissitudes, clouds and darkness involve the operations of Providence, yet is its power, not infrequently, evidently exerted in the preservation of individuals : and, exerted too, in a manner wholly unexpected, as well as incomprehensible by human wisdom. Such, we have no doubt, will, with few exceptions, be the truly rational conclusions of those who peruse this well-chosen selection, the avowed object of which is, to encourage the distressed sailor in every situation, to emulate the noble conduct of St. Paul, who, thrice shipwrecked, yet against hope, believed in hope ; and to trust in that benevolent power which “ rides in the whirlwind, and directs the storni." ' In the beginning of the volume, a notion is started, that the well known History of Robinson Crusoe, was written by Robert Harley, Earl of Oxford, while imprisoned in the Tower, in the early part of the reign of George I. and that it was given by him to De Foe, its hitherto supposed author. The reasons adduced in support of this opinion, do not appear to us conclusive; the strongest internal evidence in their favour is, the striking difference of style between the first and second volumes of the work. The popularity of this history has not been confined to Britain : for Mr. C. observes, that in 1792 he found it, in the original, by the bedside of the Archduke of Austria. The character of De Foe is cleared up satisfactorily respecting a charge of having made undue advantage of Selkirk's papers, whose residence during four years on the desolate island of Juan Fernandez, is believed to have furnished the first idea of Robinson Crusoe. Selkirk returned to England with Captain Woodes Rogers, in 1711; who, the year following, published his voyage round the world, including the story of Selkrik's adventures; whereas Ros binson Crusoe did not appear till seven years afterwards, viz. in 1719.- From the preşent volume it is omitted ; in consideration, probably, that it is already in every hand.
Of the early voyages included in the volume before us, among those which will be read with interest, that of Sir Humphry Gilbert, to Newfoundland ; and the Shipwreck of Sir Thomas Gates, on the islands of Bermudas, are particularly striking. This group of rocks and keys, the terror of navigators, was dis. tinguished by the epithet of “ Devil's islands.” Dangerous they certainly are, in a very high degree; nevertheless, the fears of our ancient mariners exceeded the truth, on one hand, no less than, on the other hand, the pompous eulogium of Waller, on their imagined excellence, in his well-known poem, beginning
e Bermudas, wall'd with rocks! who does not know,
“ That happy island where huge lemons grow?" The description of the isles in their primitive state of desolation, forms a strong contrast with what we know of their present im- proved condition ; notwithstanding which, we do not comprehend the reasons of the benevolent Berkeley for selecting this secluded and dangerous spot as the site of his proposed college. The nearest land is Charlestown: and the distance is 900 miles from the Continent of America.
The almost incredible relation of Monsieur Viaud's adventures and sufferings, equally excites horror and compassion ; and the dreadful anguish of hunger, which impelled him to murder his faithful and affectionate negroe, is recited in a detail most painfully minute. Indeed, we doubt much the propriety of such recitals; as the recollection of them may, on some occasions, issue in deeds at which humanity shudders. This observation becomes censure, and proportionately severe, if the narrative, though true in the main, yet is liable in parts to a warrantable degree of scepticism; which we cannot but suspect it is. We'turn with pleasure from this tale of woé, to a story which has afforded instruction as well as amusement to thousands, both in their boyish days and in their riper years: the adventures of Capt. Richard Falconer, written in an easy and natural style, and though not destitute of hair-breadth escapes, from fire, and flood, and famine, and sometines approaching to the marvellous, yet never exceeds the bounds of probability, The ideas and descriptions of this history, are those of a man who has actually experienced what he describes. It has also a distinguishing--feature that in the greatest dangers it inculcates a becoming dependance upon, and resignation to, Divine Providence. We heartily wish that in the writing of sea adventures, this principle was more prevalent: nor is it to the honour of the present age, that the more remotely we ascend from our own times, in perusing the accounts of our early voyagers, the more we may discern of piety and humility. We think Mr. Clark's work would not have suffered in the estimation of the public, had he increased the number of those notes, which avowedly have for their object, to call the attention of our brave seamen to the necessity of fearing God, and living their appointed space of hardship, suffering, and danger, to their great Creator's praise.
The loss of the Cato and Proserpine, employed in the service of government, on a coral reef, 700 miles to the eastward of Port Jackson, is prefaced by an observation, that it would have 'been sooner laid before the public, but for the inhuman conduct of the governor of the Isle of France, in detaining the ship
wrecked wrecked officers as prisoners of war. The ships were both totally lost on the reef in a very dark night, but the men escaped on an adjacent sand bank, with the exception of three of their number who were drowned. One of the commanders sailed for Port Jackson, in a small boat, leaving eighty-four men on this forlorn spot, situated in lat. 22°. 11. So. Long, 155o. 38'. E. with such of the provisions, water, and sails, as were saved from the wrecks of the two, ships. During the absence of the boat, they built a schooner out of the wrecks, intending her as their last resource, by which name she was called. Soon after they had landed, they found on the bank the sternpost of a large ship, not much inferior in size to that of a frigate, which had lain long exposed to the weather. This, it is conjectured, and with great probability, belonged to one of the ships of the unfortunate Perouse; and Mr. Westall, the original relator, adds in his narrative
If we refer to the concluding part of that navigator's last letter from New South Wales, we shall find that his intended track would probably carry him towards the reef on which the above remains of a wreck were found. It was therefore our general opinion, that we were cast away on the very same bank, upon which poor Perouse perished.'
We conclude with observing, that after a stay of forty-nine days on this dismal place, and having laid the keel of a second vessel, they were happily released from their state of painful suspense, by the arrival of ships sent for them from Port Jackson. Mr. Westall's account will give our readers a clear idea of their dangers and sufferings. He says,
"We were all assenabled in the cabin, when I suddenly heard the crew in great confusion, and hurrying on deck, beheld breakers on our larboard bow. The coral reef showed itself in a long line of foam, seen indistinctly through the gloom of the approaching night.
"When the ship struck, one general groan resounded throughout, for not a possibility appeared that any one could be saved. The night was unusually dark, and for those latitudes remarkably. so. Come, my lads, said Lieutenant Fowler, whose accustomed calmness and serenity experienced no abatement, I have weathered worse nights than this : Come! put a good face upon it. Cut away the mizen shrouds and stays !--The mainmast not going, he then ordered it to be cut down, in order to ease the ship.
During this dreadful scene, after the first confusion had subsided, all was coolness, and prompt obedience : nor did the smallest disposition for drunkenness, or plunder, appear amongst the crew. It was then that the superiority of British seamen, and their animated reliance upon Providence, was impressed on my mind in a manner that can never be effaced. Many of them, though drenched with the sea, and exhausted with fatigue, would only accept with moderation the spirits served out to recruit their strength.
For :? For about a quarter of an hour after the ship struck, it was doubts ful whether we should be burnt, or drowned ; for a candle which had been left in the gun room, had set some curtains on fire, and the fame quickly increasing, was rapidly gaining ground. Amidst this double death, if I may use the expression, immediate precautions were adopted, and with success. The whole of my attention was then divided, between many an anxious glance after the lights of the Bridgewater, and then listening, with dread of the ship's parting, to every crash I heard. The crew laboured incessantly; and what is hardly credible, at least to landsmen, after our men had done all they could, many of them had the resolution to go to sleep, and that soundly, in the gaping wreck of their vessel. Their example was contagious : for after some time, having jammed myself into a secure place, I also was rocked by the tempest into forgetfulness.
As the day broke, the horrid situation of the Cato, without the surf, was disclosed to the crew of the Porpoise : when our men, who had hitherto borne all their sufferings with firmness, were now overcome with apprehension for the fate of the other crew, and burst into tears: whilst they, poor wretches, rejoiced to find, that we were so much better off than themselves, nobly gave us three distinct cheers! There was an awful sublimity in this act of heroism which I cannot describe. I watched their fate with peculiar solicitude : every sea that broke over the wreck of the poor Cato, seemed to be their grave; and, to my agitated mind, their numbers appeared gradually to diminish.
One man, more resolute than the rest, after continued exertions, and being overwhelmed repeatedly by the waves, at length reached a part of the reef, that was formed between the coral breakers and the sand bank; and with faultering steps, naked, and bleeding, gained the wreck of the Porpoise, within the surf. Great God! with what sensations did I behold him immediately extend his hands towards Heayen, and with uplifted eyes pour forth the fervent piety of a shipwrecked mariner. We immediately procured him refreshments, and covering : but it was many minutes before he could inform us, that after Mr. Park had made two fruitless attempts to get through the surf, this seaman who was reckoned the best swimmer on board the Cato, had determined to perish, or surmount the thireatening obstacles : yet he declared it to be his firm opinion, that few, or none of his shipmates could escape. However, towards poon the surf abated : and, with the exception of three, as mentioned in Lieutenant Fowler's account, the crew of the Cato left their perilous situation, and received support from the stores of the Porpoise.
pp. 385–388. Mr. Clarke knows somewhat of a sailor's perilous life; and has proved himself to be not insensible to their mental wants. To The latter we sincerely hope he will pay attention in the future volumes of the Naufragia, as well in respect to selection, as in directing their views to objects which may induce them to think seriously and act virtuously. All affect to lament the too obvious depravity of British sailors, but what benevolent hand contributes its aid to promote their amendment and reformation?
From the former exertions of this Divine for the religious instruction and improvement of “ those who go down to the sea in ships," we are led to hope that he will meet our wishes: which assuredly will be not only a satisfaction to himself, but a lasting benefit to his country.
We recommend this work to our readers, as instructive and entertaining: and wish both it and its benevolent editor every success.
Art. X. Specimens of scarce Translations of the Seventeenth Century,
from the Latin Poets. To which are added, Miscellaneous Translations from the Greek, Spanish, Italian, &c. By Robert Walpole, Esq. B. A. of Trinity College, Cambridge. Small 8vo. pp. 164. Mawman,
Poultry. Price 4s. 1805. W E heartily wish that the art of book-making were some
' what less thriving among us: or that every artist in this line, before he dipt his « grey goose quill” into the yet innocent ink, would seriously ask himself the obvious question, cui bono? What good am I likely to do? For, not only if mischief, in any shape, but if no good be likely to result from the labours of a writer, he had much better, both on his own account, and on that of his readers, remain quiet. We confess that we speak feelingly on this subject: destined, as we are, to be readers of books, which sometimes neither find, nor deserve, any readers beside Reviewers.
Emboldened by the signal success and popularity of some of our Elegant Exiracters, a swarm of ephemeral compilers are, without scruple, obtruding their useles miscellanea on the public, though neither solicited, nor needed. Hence we are continually offended by the literary limbs of Dryden, Pope, Thomson, Gray, and Mason, absurdly strung together, without connexion, or meaning.
velut ægri somnia, vane
Reddatur forma. Nor do we confine our disapprobation to random and incoherent compilations from modern poets; the same may be said in respect to the ancient classics : a good edition of any of these writers would be welcome; but why should our patience be put to the proof by extracts?
We conceive the above censure falls not unfairly on the writer before us. When, too, we enumerate the chief of these translations, we have reason to wonder, why Mr. W.calls them scurce. Among smaller twigs, he has collected Byblis and Caunus from Ovid, by Oldham.-Ovid, Eleg. 1, 2, by Creech.-Horace, Ode :. 4; by Rochester. Ovid, Elegy 3, 4, by Sir C. Sedley E 4