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Full text of "The Cruise of the Midge"

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TOM CRINGLE'S LOG. 



-^ 



'* I am as a weed, 
VUmg ih>m the foek on ocean's foam to sail, 
Whaiver the aurge may sweei^ the tempeAHi breath preraU.** 

CkUth 






[FRANKLIN LIBRARY EDITION.] 



NEW-YORK: 
WALLIS & NEWELL, PUBUSHERS, 

NO. 9, JOHN STRKBT. 

WOLD n TRB PRINCIPAL BOOKSBLLKRS THROUGHOUT TBB 

UNITED STATB8. 

18S5. 




'^ 






■ L 



TOM CRINGLE'S LOft 



CHAPTER L 

THB LAXTNCHINO OP TH> LOO. 

« While rapidlT the marksman's shot prevaird, 
And ajre as if for death some lonely trumpet waird.'i 

Gs&TiiiTDs orWroMiHa. 

Dazklbo by the |^onea«f Tnfii]gar» I, ThoiiiBs Ciingle^ one fine mom- 
ing in the merry ni<mi of May, in the year one thousand eight hundred 
and so and so, magnftnimouBly determioued in my own mind, that the United 
Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland shotdd no longer lang^uish under tha 
want of a suoeessor to lAie immortal Nelson, and being then of the ffl^at peiy 
pendicular altitude of four feet four inches, and of the mature age (h thirteea 
years, I thereupon betook mysdf to the praiseworthy task of tormenting, to 
the full ertent of my small ability, every man and woman who had tha 
misfortune of being in aay way connected with me, until they had agreed to 
•exert all their interest, direct or indirect, and concentrate the same in one fo- 
•€us upon the head and heart of Sk Bamably Blueblazes, vice-admiral of the 
red squadron, a lord of the admiralty, and one of the old plain K> B.'s, (for he 
Amrnhed berore tiie time when a ^dlant action or two tagged half of tha 
Setters of the alphabet to a man's name, like the tail of a paper kite,) in 
•Older that he might be gracionsly pleased to have me plaoed on the quarter* 
deck of one of his majesty's ships of war without delay. 

The stone I had set thus recklessly a-roUins, bad not been in motion 
OTor a fortnight, when it fell with unanticipatedviolence, aad crushed the 
^eart ^ my poor mother, whUe it terribly bruised that of me, Thomas ; for 
as I sat at breakfast with the dear old woman> one fine Sunday momioSy 
admiring my new blue jadtet and snow-white trousers, and shmin^ well- 
«oaped mee, and nieely brushed hair, in the pier slass over the chrnm^* 
piece, I therein saw the door behind me open, and P^icodemus, the waiting 
man, enter and deliver a letter to the old lady, with a formidable-looking 



I perceived that she first og|ed the superscription, and then the seal,, very 
OQimonsly, aiid twice made as if she would have broken the missive open^ 
but her heart seemed as often to fail her. At length she laid it down-— 
heaved a long deep sigh— took off her spectacles, which appeared dim, 
dim — wiped them, put them on again, and making a sudden efibrt, tore 
open the letter, read it hastily over, but not so rapidfy as to prevent her hot 
tears &Qing with a small tiny tap tap on the cracking paper. 

Freeently she pinched my ann, pushed the blisterea manuscript under my 



4 TOH CRIKOLX'S 1.06. 

nose, and, utteriv unable to speak to me, rose, covered her fadf with her 
hands, and left the room weeping bitterly. I could hear her praying in a 
low, solemn, yet sobbing and almost inarticulate voice^ as she crossed the 
passase to her own dressing-room, — "Even as thou wilt, O Lord — not 
mine, out thy holy will be done — vet, oh ! it is a bitter bitter tUng for a 
widowed mother to part with her only bov." 

Now came my turn — as I read the foUowing epistle three times over, 
with a most fierce countenance, before thorou^ly understanding whether 
I was dreaming or awake — in truth, pom little fellow as I was, I was fairly 
stunned. 

" Admiralty, luch a data. 

** Dbar Madam, »- It gives me very great pleasure to say that your son 
is appointed to the^ Breeze fri^te, now fitting at Portsmouth for foreign 
service. Captain Wigemwell is a most excellent officer, and a good man, 
and the schoolmaster on board is an exceedingly decent person I am inform- 
ed : so Iconmtulate you on his good fortune in beginning his career, in 
which I wishhtm all success, under such favourable auspices. As the boy 
is, I presume, all ready, you had better send him down on Thursday next, 
at latest, as the frigate will go to sea, wind and weather permitting^ posi- 
tively on Sunday morning. 

*' I remain, my dear Madam, 
** Yours very faithfully, 

'* Barnabt Blueblaxbs, K. B." 

However mudi I had been moved by my mother^ grief, my false pride 
came to my assistance, and my first impulse was to chant a verse of some 
old tane, in a most doleful manner. '* All right — all rifiht,** I then ex- 
claimed, as I thrust half a doubled-up muffin into my g<£, but it was all 
chew, chew, and no swallow — not a morsel could [ force down my parched 
throat, which tightened like to throttle me. 

Old Nicodemus had by this time again entered the room, unseen and un- 
heard, and startled me confoundedly, as he screwed his words in his sharp 
cracked voice into my larboard ear. " Jane tells me your mamma is in a 
sad taking, Master Tom. You ben't going to leave us, all on a heap like, 
be you ? Surely you'll stay until your sister comes from your undo Job's ? 
You know there are only two on ye — You wont leave the old lady all 
alone, Master Thomas, will ye ?" The wo^y old fellow's voice quavered 
here^ and the tears hopped over his old cheeks through the flour and tallow 
like peas, as he slowly drew a line down the forehead of his well-powdered 
pate, with his fore-finger. 

'*No— no — why, ves," exclaimed I, fidrly overcome: **that is — oh 
'NiCy Nic— yon old fool, I wish I could cry, man — I wish I could cry !'* 
and straightway I hied me to my chamber, and wept until I thought my 
very heart would have burst 

In my innocence and ignorance, child as I was, I had looked forward to 
several months' preparation ; to buying and fitting of uniforms, and dirks, 
and cocked hat, and swaggering therein, to my own great glory, and the 
envy of all my young relations ; and especially I desired to parade my fire- 
new honours before use large daik eyes of my darlins little Creole cousin, 
Mary Palma ; whereas I was now to be bundled on board, at a few days' 
warning, out of a ready-made furnishing shop, with lotsof ill-made, jglossy, 
hard- mangled duck trousers, the creases as sharp as the backs of knives, 
and — *'on, it never rains, but it pours," exclaimed I; "surely all this 
promptitude is a little de plus in Sir Bamaby." 

However, away I was trundled at the time appointed, with an aching- 
heart, to Portsmouth, after having endured the misery of a first parting from 
a fonq mother, and a host of kina friends ; but, misenible as I was, accord- 



TOH OEIHGLb's log. 



tng to my preconcoiyed determinatioD, I began my journal the very day I 
arnved, that nothing connected with bo great a man should be lost, and 
most weighty did the matters therein related appear to mc at the time ; but 
seen through the long vista of I won't say how many years, I really must 
confess that the Log, for long long afler 1 first went to sea in the Breeze, 
and subsequently when removed to the old Kraaken line>of-battle ship, 
both of which were constantly part of blockading squadrons, could be com- 
pared to nothing more fitly than a dish of trifle, anciently called syllabub, 
with a stray plum here and there scattered at the bottom. But when, afler 
several weary years, I got away in the dead old Torch, on a separate cruise, 
incidents came fast enough with a vengeance — stem, unyielding, iron 
events, as I found to my heavy cost, which spoke out trumpet-tongued and 
fiercely for themselves, and whose tremendous simplicity required no ad- 
ventitious aid in the narration to thrill through the hearts of others. So, 
to avoid yarn-spinning, I shall evaporate my early bogs, and blow off as 
much of the froth as I can, in order to present the residuum free of flummery 
to the reader — just to give him a taste here and there, as it were, of the 
sort of animal I was at mat time. Thus : 

Thomas Cringle, his log-book. — 

Arrived in Portsmouth, by the Defiance, at ten, a. m. on such a day. 
Waited on the commissioner, to whom I had letters, and said I was ap- 
pointed to the Breeze. Same day, went on board and took up mj^ berth ; 
stifling hot ; mouldy biscuit ; and so on. My mother's list makes it filteen 
shirtd, whereas I have only twelve. 

Admiral made the si^al to weigh, wind at S. "W^, fresh and squally. 
Stockings should be one dozen worsts, three of cotton, two of silk ; find only 
half a dozen worsted, two of cotton, and one of silk. Fired a gun and 
weighed. 

Sailed for the fleet off Vigo, deucedly Bea-9ick ; was told that fat pori( 
was the best specific, if bolted half mw ; did not find it much of a tonic ; 
— passed a terrible night, and for four hours of it obliged to keep watch, 
more dead than alive. The very second evening we were at sea, it came 
on to blow; and the night fell very dark, with heavy rain. Towards eight 
bells in the middle watch, I was standing on a gun well forward on the 
starboard side, listening to the groaning of the main tack, as the swelling 
sail, the foot of which stretohed transversely right athwart the ship's deck 
in a black arch, struggled to tear it up, like some dark impalpable spirit of 
the air striving to burst the chains that held him, and escape high up into 
the murky clouds, or a giant labouring to uproot an oak, and wondenng in 
my innocence how hempen cord could brook such strain — when just as the 
long-waited-for strokes of the bell sounded gladly in my ear, and the shrill 
clear note of the whistle of the boatswain's mate had been followed by his 
gruff voice, grumbling hoarsely through the gale. " Larboard watch, ahojr !" 
the look-out atlhe weather gangway, who haa been reheved, and beside 
whom I had been standing a moment before, stepped past me, and scram- 
bled up on the booms. — " Hillo, Howard, where away, my man ?" said I, 

" Only to feteh my ♦» 

Crack! — the maintack parted, and up flew the sail with a thunder- 
ing flap, loud as the report of a cannon shot, through which, however, I 
could distinctly hear a heavy smashf as the large and ponderous blocks at the 
clew of the sail struck the doomed sailor under the ear, and whirled him off 
the booms over the fore-yard-arm into the sea, where he perished, as heav- 
ing-to was impossible, and useless if practicable, as his head must have 
been smashed to atoms. 

This is one of the stray plums of the trifle, what follows is a whisk of 
the froth, written when we looked into Corunna, about a week after the em- 
barkation of the army : — 



MM outimx'a LOfi. 



Faraodl, ihoo piUu oflba wi 



In boDoar'i fiTmuoBJil ■ tWf 
Ai btighl aa e'er, in gloiy ML 

D*cs»ad by weak or wickni mM, 

How gailuiily thou Uood'il u bay, 
Uka J»n hunled to hia den. 

Let Ftanog laU, on thai bloodj daj. 
No boaalflil iplendow round iby bin. 

No blann'd Iropfaiea o'er tiij grim ; 
Bui Ihou had'lt mora, iba aoUierVMr, 

The lieail-wann offoiiog of the beats. 

On Luritania't roek-^irl coail, 
•" ----■-»» thyre'- '■- 



Nor o'er ihy Iand> Lb 

The laurel twined with 

Siill ihaU it liia old 



A nee oT boeei will ifftu. 
The glory of Britannia'a cUma, 

Toeawlate ibf bright career. 
And there villbe, of mania) fire, 

Thoae who >ll danger will endure ; 
Tbeir firft, beil aim, but to inapire 

To die lilJ•ie^^h~l^ledtathl)/Mler^. 



a frigate in the nortb-eut quutsr, making 
. Bay of Biscay — trenendouB BWoU — 
uadton off Cadii — irittum iquadniil — 

:b I had now served fol aorne time, was 
nf about in a fleet, I got appointed to a 

I, in wbich we sailed on mcb a day for the 

' thick and squally | but towards erening 

.rwich, it mode rated, when we made more 

>ming, in the cold, miaeiable, dretiching 

passed through a fleet of fishing-boalg at 

" and in the middle of the sea," — bat so 

Es smoking cheerily, and a Bolitary figure, 

aa broad as itwaa long, atiffiy walking to andfto on the confined deeka of the 

little vessels. It was now that I knew the value of the aaying, " A fiaher- 

uaa's walk, two steps and oveiboaid." With repaid to tbece bum fiitws- 






TOH CEnrtfLE's LOft. 7 

iqiken, I cannot oonvey a bettier notion of them, than by describing one of the 
two North Sea pilots whom we had on board. This pilot was at all, raw- 
boiked aubject, about six feet or bo, with a blue face — I could not call it red 
— and a hawk's-bill nose of the colour of bronze. His head was defended 
from the weather by v^iat is technically called a south-west — pronounced 
sow- west — cap, which is in shape like the thatch of a dustman, composed of 
canvass, well taned, with no snout^ but having a long flap hanging down 
the back to carry the rain over the cape of the Jacket. His chin was imbed' 
ded in a red comforter that rose to his ears. His trunk was first of all cased 
in a shirt of worsted stocking-net ; over this he had a coarse linen shirt, then 
a thick cloth waistcoat ; a shag jacket was the next lajrer, and over that 
was rigged the large cumbrous pea jacket, reaiching to his knees. As for 
bis lower spars, the rig was still more peculiar ; first of all, he had on a 
pair of most comfortable woollen stockings, what we call fleecy hosiery — 
•nd the hemtlies are peculiarly nice in this respect — then a pair of strong 
feamaught trousers ; over these again are drawn up another pair of stock- 
ings, thick, coarse, rig-atid-furrow as we call them in Scotland, and above 
all this were drawn a pair of long, well-greased, and liqumred boots, reach- 
ing half-way up the thigh, and altogether impervious to wet However 
laomfortaUe this costume may be in bad weather, in board, it is clear 
enough that any culprit so swathed, would stand a poor chance of bein^ 
saved, were he to fall overboard. The wind now veered round and round, 
and baflled, and checked us oS, so that it was the sixth ni^ht after we had 
taken our departure from Harwich before we saw Heligoland light. We 
then bore away for Cuxhaven, and I now knew for the first time that we 
had a government emissary of some kind or another on board, although he 
bad hitherto confined himself stricdy to the captain's cabin. 

AH at once it came to blow from the north-east, and we were again driven 
back among the English fishing boats. The weather was thick as but- 
termilk, so we had to keep the bell constantly ringing, as we could not 
see the jib-boom end from tne forecastle. Every now and then we heard a 
small, hard, clanking tinkle, from the fishine-boats, as if an old pot had 
been struck instead of a bell, and a faint h^o, " Pishing smack," as we 
shot past them in the fog, while we could scarcely see the vessels at all. 
The morning after this particular time to which 1 allude, was darker than 
any which had gone before it ; absolutely you could not see the breadth of 
the ship from you ; and as we had not taken the sun for five days, we 
bad to grope our way almost entirely by the lead. I had the forenoon 
watch, during the whole of which we were among a little fleet of fishing- 
boats, although we could scarcely see them, but being unwilling to lose 
ground by lyin§ to, we fired a gun every half hour, to give the small craft 
notice of our vicinity, that they might k6ep their bells a-going. Every three 
"orfour minutes the marine drum-boy, or some amateur performer,-^ for 
most sailors would give a glass of grog any day to be allowed to beat a 
drum for five minutes on end, — beat a short roll, and oflen as we drove 
along, under a reefed foresail, and close-reefed topsails, we could hear the 
answering tinkle before we saw the craft from which it proceeded ; and 
when we did percmve her as we flew across her stern, we could only see it. 
and her mast, and one or two well-swathed, hardy fisherman, the whole of 
the little vessel forward being hid in a cloud. 

I had been invited this day to dine with the captain, Mr. Splinter the 
first Ueutenant being also of tiie party ; the cloth had been witharawn, and 
we had ail had a glass or two of^ wine a piece, when the fog settled down 
so thickljr, altbou^ it was not more than five o^dock in tj^e afternoon, that 
the captain desjr^ that the lamp might be lit It was done, and I was 
remaiKifl^g the contmst between the dull, dusky, brown light, or rather the 
|>alpable London fog that came through the skylight, and the bright yeUow 
43-^8 



S. TOM CaUTGU^fl L0«. 

Sparkle of the lamp, whien the second lientenant, Mr. Treenail, came down 
me ladder — 

" We have shoaled our water to fire fathofltn, sir— shells and stones. — 
Here Wilson, bring in the lead.*' 

The leadsman, in his pea-jacket and shag trousers, with the rainnlTOp 
hanging to his nose, and a large knot in his cheek from a junk of tobacco 
therein stowed, with pale, wet visage, lud whiskers sparkling with moisture, 
while his long black hair hung damp and lank over his fine forehead and 
the stand-up cape of his ooat, immediately presented himself at the door, 
with the lead in his claws, an octagonal-shaped cone, lik^ the weight of a 
window-sash, about eighteen inches long, and two inches diameter at the 
bottom, tapering away nearly to a point at top, where it was flattened, and 
a. hole pierced for the line to be fastened to. At the lower end — the butt< 
end, as I wot:dd say — there was a hollow scooped out, and filled with 
grease, so that when the lead was cast, the quality of the soil, sand, or 
shells, or mud, that came up adhering to this lard, inmcated, along with the 
depth of water, our situation in the North Sea ; and W this, indeed, we 
guided our course, in the absence <of all opportunity of ascertaining our 
position by observations of the sun. 

The captain consulted the chart — ** Sand and shells ; why, you should 
have deeper water, Mr. Treenail. Any of the fishing-boats near you T** 

** Not at present, sir ; but we cannot be far off seme of them." 

** Well, let me know when you come near any of them." 

A little afler this, aa became my situation, I rose and made my bow, and 
went on deck. By this time the night had fallen, and it was thicker than 
•ever, so that, standing beside the man at the wheel, ^ou could not see 
farther forward than me booms ; yet it was not dark either, — that is, it 
was moonlight, so that the haze, thick as it was, had that silver gauze-like 
appearance, as if it had been luminous in itself, that cannot be described to 
any one who has not seen it The gun had been fired just as I came on 
deck, but no responding tinkle gave notice of any vessel being in the neigh- 
bourhood. Ten minutes, it may have been a quarter of an hour, when a 
short roll of the drum was beaten from the forecastle, where f was standing. 
At the moment I thought I heard a holla, but I could not be sure. Pres« 
ently I saw a small Ugnt, with a misty halo surrounding it, just under the 
bowsprit — 

*• Fort your helm,*! sung out the boatswain, — "port your helm, or we 
shall be over a fishhig-boat !*' 

A cry arose from beneath — a black obiect was for an instant distinguish- 
able — and the next moment a crash was neard. The spritsail-yard rattled , 
and broke off sharp at the point where it crossed the bowsprit ; and a 
heavy smashing thump against our bows told, in fearful language, that we 
had run her down. ThrSj of the men and a boy hung on by the ringing 
of the bowsprit, and were brought safely on board ; but two poor fellowA 
p^rished with their boat It appeared, that they had broken their bell ; 
and although they saw us coming, they had no better means than shout- 
ing, and showing a light, to advertise us of their vicinity. 

Next morning the wind once more chopped round, and the weather 
cleared, and in four-and- twenty hours thereafter we were off the mouth of ' 
the Elbe, with three miles of white foaming shoals between us and the land 
at Cuxhaven, roaring and hissing, as if ready to swallow us up. It was 
low water, and, as our object was to land the emissary at Cuxhaven, we 
had to wait, having no pilot for the port, although we had the signal flying 
lor one all the morning, until noon, when we ran in close to the green mound 
which constituted the rampart of the fort at the entrance. To our gteat 
surprise, when we hoisted our colours and pennant, and fired a gun to lee- 
ward, there was no flag hoisted in answer at the flag-stail^ nor was there 



•90U CftHWIift's LOfik ^ 

•07 indication of a angle living aoul on shore to welcome wk Mr. Splintev 
and the captain were standing together at the gangway — " Why, sir," 
said the former, *< this silence somewhat surprises me : what say you, 
Cheragoux ?" to the government emissary or messenger already mentionedy 
who was peering through the glass dose by. 

** Why, my lieutenant, I don't ceitain dat all ish right on- sore dere." 

** No ?'' said Captain Deadeye ; '* why, what do you see ?*' 

'< It ish not so mosh vat I sbee, as vat I no shoe, sir, dat trembles me. It 
cannot surely bepossib dat de Prussian an' Hanoverin tioop have left de 
place, and dat dese dem- Franceman ave advance so far as do EUbe aulr<» 
fmtj dat isb, once- mora 7" 

« French!" said Deadeye: *<poo, nonsense: no French hereaJl>outs ;, 
none nearer thaik those tooiped np^ in Hamburgn withr Davoust, take my 
uroidforit" 

** I sail take your vord for any ting else in de large vorld, mi capitain ; 
but I see sometiag ^ance behind dat rampart, parapd you call, dat look 
dem like de shako of de mfanteHe Ugere of dat wiUain de £mperor Na^ 
poleon. Ah ! I see de red worsted epaulet of de grenadier also ; sacre ! 
vat is dat puff of vite smoke V* 

What it was we soon ascertained to our heavy cost, for the shot that had 
been fired at us from a long 32 pound gun, tooK. e&ct right abaft the fore 
mast, and killed three men outrignt and wounded two» Several other shots 
followed, but with less sure aim. Returning the fire was of no use, as our 
carronades could not have pitdied their metal much more than half-way ; 
or, even if they had been long guns, they would merely have plumped me 
balls into the turf rampart, without hurting any one. So we wisely hauled 
ofi^ and ran up the river with the young flood for about an hour, until we 
lanchored close to the Hanoverian bank, near a gap in the dike, where we 
waited till the evening. 

As soon as the night fell, a boat vnih muffled oars was manned, to carry 
the messenger on shore. . I was in it, Mr. Treenail, the second lieutenant, 
steering. We pulled in right for a breach in the dyke, lately cut by the 
French, in order to inundate the neighbourhood ; and as the £lbe at high 
water is hereabouts much hi|^er than the surrounding country, we were 
soon sucked into the current, and had only to keep our oara in the water, 
palling a stroke now and then to give the boat steerage way. As we shot 
throu^ the gap into the smooth water beyond, we once more gave way, 
the boat's head being kept in the direction of lights that we saw twinkling 
in the distance, apparently in some village beyond the inner embankment, 
when ai| at once we dashed in amon^ thousands of wild-geese, which rose 
with a clang, and a concert of quacking, screaming, -and nissins, that waa 
startling enough. We skimmed steadily on in the same direction — 
Oara, men !" We were by this time close to a small cluster of houses, 
perched on the forced ground or embankment, and the messenger baUed 
m German. 

" QM vive /" sung out a gruff voice ; and we heard the clang of a mus- 
ket, as if some one had cast it from his shoulder, and caught it in his hands, 
as he brought it down to the char^ Our passenger seemed a little taken 
aback ; but we hailed again, still m German, '^ Parole,^* replied the man. 
A pause. ^* The watchword, or I fire." We had none to give. 

'' Pull round, men," said the lieutenant, with great quickness ; << pull 
the starboard oara ; we are in the wrong box ; l^k water the larboard* 
That's it! give way, men." 

A flash — crack went the sentry's piece^ and ping sung the ball over our 
heads. Another pause, then a volley from a whole platoon. Again all was 
dark and silent Presently a field piece was fired, ana several rockets were let 
off in 0U9 direction, by whose light we could see a whole company oi Frencl^ 



■oldiera standing to thetr armt, with sevonl cannon, but we were apeadHhf 
out of the reach of their musketry. Sereral round shots were now fired, that 
hissed, ncochetting along the water close by us. Not a word was spoken 
in the boat all this time ; we continued to pull for the opening in the dike, 
although, the current being stions against us^ we made but littW way s 
while the chance of being cut off^by the Johnny Grapemu setting round 
the top of the embankment, so as to command the gap beroie we ooutd 
reach it, became every moment more alarming. 

The messenger was in great tribulation, and made sereral bnrefaoed 
attempts to stow himself away ander the item sheets. 

The pliant fellows who composed the crew strained at their oais until 
every thmg cracked again ; but as the flood made, the current i^gainst ns 
increased, and we barely held our own. « Sleer her out of the cumnt^ 
man," said the lieutenant to the coxswain ; the man put the tiller to poft 
as he was ordered. 

<* Vat you do soch a tins for, Mr. Capitain lieutenant 7" said the emn- 
aary. << Oh ! you not pershave you are rone in onder de igh bank 1 Uow 
you sail satisfy me no France ii!fmierie Ugere dere, too, more as in de fofC, 
eh ? How you sail satisfy me. Mister Capitain Lieutenant, eh ?" 

** Hold your blasted tongue, will you," said Treenail, *< mmI the infiuitry 
ligtre be damned simply. Mind ^our eye, my fine fellow, or I shall be 
much inclined to see whether yon mU be Ugare in the Elbe or no. Hark !^ 

We all pricked up our ears, and stmin^ oar ^yta, while a iMigbt, spiU 
ting, sparkling fire of musketry opened at (he gap, but there was no ping* 
pinging of the shot overhead. 

** They cannot be firing at us, rir," said the couwain ; ** none of them 
bullets are telling hereaway.'* 

Presently a smart fire was returned in three distinct clusters from the 
water, and whereas the firing at first had only lit up the dark figures (^ the 
¥Vench soldiery, and the black outlme of the bank on whicn they were 
posted, the flashes that answered them showed us three armed boats 
attempting to force the passage. In a minute the filing ceased; thfr 
measured splash of oars was heard, as boats approached us. 

'* Who*s there 1^ sung out the heutenant 

" Torches," was the answer. 

" All's well. Torches," rejoined Mr. Treenail ; and presently the jolly- 
boat, and laundi, and cutter of the Torch, with twenty marines, and m^ 
and-thirty seamen, all armed, were alongnde. 

'* What cheer. Treenail, my boy 7" ouoth Mr. Splinter. 

''Why, not mudi; the French, wno we were told had left the £lb» 
entirely, are still here, as well as at Cuzhaven, not in force certainly, but 
Bufficiently strong to pepper us very deeently in the ovtgoing." 

"What, are any or the people hurt?" 

*' Nb," said the garrulous emissary. *' No, not hurt, hut some of ns 
frightened leetle piece — ah, very mosh, je voua assured 

*< Speak for yourself. Master Plenippo," said TreenaiL ** But, Splinter, 
my man, now since the enemy have occupied the dike in front, how the 
deuce shall we get back into the river, tell me that ?** 

** Why," said the senior lieutenant, " we roust go as we came." 

And here the groans from two poor fellows who had been hit were heard 
from the bottom of the launch. The cutter was by this time close to us, on 
the larboard side, commanded by Mr. Julius Cesar Tip, the senior mid- 
shipman, vulgarly called in the ship Bathos^ from his rather unromantte 
name. Here also a low moaning evinced the precision of the Frenchmen's 
fire. 

** Lord, Mr. Treenail, a sharp brush that was." 

** Hush !" quolh Treenail. At this moment three rockets hissed up int<^ 



mil cRuroLi's log. II 

Uie dflik sky, and for an instant the hull and rigging of the sloop of war at 
anchor in the river glanced in the blae-white glare,'and vanished again, like 
ft spectre, leaving us in more thick darkness than before. 

*< Gemini ! what is that now ?" quoth Tip again, as we distinctly heard 
the commixed rumbling and rattling sound of aitillery scampering along 
thedyLe. 

<*The ship has sent up these rockets to warn us of our danger," said 
Mr. Treenail. << What is to be done ? Ah, Splinter, we are in a scrape 
»- there, they have brought up iield-pieces, don't you hear?" 

Splinter hiad heard it as well as his junior officer. <* True eooughj Tree^ 
nail : so the sooner we make a dash tniough the opening the better." 

** Agreed." 

By some impulse peculiar to British sailors, the' men were just about 
dieering, when their commanding officer's voice controlled them. " Hark, 
my brave fellows, silence, as you value your lives." 

So away we puUed, the tide being now nearly on the turn, and presently 
me were so'ivear the opening that we could see Che signal^ights in the rig- 
ging of the sloop of war. All was quiet on the dike. 

« Thank God, they have retreated after all," said Mr. TreenaiL 

** Whoo— o, whoo — o," shouted a gruff voice from the shore. 

^ There they are still," said Splinter. '< Marines, stand by, don't throw 
away a shot ; men, pull like fury. So give way, my lads, a minute of that 
strain will shoot us alongside of the old brig — tiiat's it — hurrah !" 

*^ Hurrah!" shouted the men in answer, but his and their exclamations 
were cut short by a volley of musketry. The fierco mustaches, pale faces, 
glazed shakoes, blue uniforms, and red epaulets, of the French infantry, 
glanced for a moment, then all was dark again. 

<* Fire 1" The marines in the three boats returned the salute, and by the 
flashes we saw three pieces of field artillery in the very act of being unlim- 
bered. We could distinctly hear the clash of the mounted artillerjrmen's 
sabres against their horses' flanks as they rode to the rear, their burnished 
accoutrements glancing at every sparkle of the musketry. We pulted like 
fiends, and being the fastest boat, soon headed the launch and cutter, who 
were returning the enemy's fire brilliantly, when crack — a six-pound shot 
drove our boat into staves, and all hands were the next moment squattering 
in the water. I sank a good bit, I suppose, for when I rose to the surface, 
half drowned and giddy and confused, and striking out at random, the first 
tiling I recollect was a hard hand being wrung into my neckerchief, while 
a gruff voice shouted in my ear — 

" Rendez vousj mon cherJ* 

Resistance was useless. I was forcibly dragged up the bank, where 
both musketry and cannon were still plajring on the boats, which had, 
however, by this time got a good offing. I soon knew they were safe by 
the Torch opening a fire of round and grape on the head of the dike, a 
certain proof that the boats had been accounted for. The French party 
now ceased firing, and retreated by thcedge of the inundation, keeping the 
dike between them and the brig, all except the artillery, who had to scam^ 
per off, running the gauntlet on the crest of the embankment until they got 
beyond the range of the carronades. I wm conveyed between two- grena^ 
diers along the water's edge so long as the ship was firing ; but when that 
ceased, I was dapped'on one of the Umbers of the field-guns, and strapped 
down to it between two of the artillerymen. 

We rattled along, until we came up to the French bivouac, where, round' 
a large fire, kindled in what seemed to have been a farmyard, were assMn- 
Wed about fifty or sixty French soldiers. Their arms were piled under 
the h>w projectmg roof of an out-house, while the fire flickered upon their 
dark figures, and glanced on their bright accoutrements, and lit up the wall 

8* 



IS TOM csixalk'* log. 

•f the house that oonrooaed one side of the sqoaie. I wm mmtdaiMfy 
marched between a file of men into a small room, where the eommandiiig 
officer of the detachment was seated at a table, a Uoaing wood fire roaring 
in the chinmey. He was a genteel^ riendei^ dark man, with very large 
black mustM^ee, and fine sparkling biack eyes, and had apparently josl 
dismounted, for the mud was fresh on his boots and trousers^ The lattdlr 
were blue, with a broad ^otd laoe down the seam, and fastened by a strap 
under his boot, from which projected a long fizeid spur, which to me was 
remarkable as an unusual dress for a miMotre^ the British army beings at 
the time I write dt, still in the age of breeches and oaiters, or tali boots, 
long cues and pipeclay — that is, those troops which I had seen at hooie^ 
although I believe the great duke had already rdaxed a number of these 
absurdities in Spain. 

His single-breasted coat was buttoned up to his throat, and without an 
inch of lace except on his crimson collar, which fitted close roimd his neck, 
and was richly embroidered with gold acorns and oak leaves, as were tiie 
crimson oufis to his sleeves. He wore two immense and very handsoio^ 
gold epaulets. 

" My good boy/' said he, after the officer who hod captured me told his 
story — "So your government thinks the emperor is rotreotiBg from the 
fiUie?" 

I was a tolerable F^nch scholar as times went, and oaswered him oa 
well as I could. 

" I have said nothing about that, sir ; but, from your question I presume 
yon command the rear-guard. Colonel ?" 

*<How strong is your squadron^ the river?*' said he, parrying tbf9 
question. 

** There is only one sloop of war, sir ** — and I spoke the troth. 

He looked at me, and smiled incredulously ; ana then continued — 

*' I don't command the reaivguard, sir — but I waste time — are the boal0 
nady?" 

H^ was answered in the affirmative. 

'< Then set fire to the houses, and let off the rockets ; thev will see them 
at Cuxhaven — men, fall in— march " — and ofi*we all trunaled towards the 
river again. 

When we arrived there, we found ten Blankanese boats, two of them 
very large, and fitted with sliding platforms. The four field pieces were 
run on board, two into each ; one nundred and fifVy men embarked in them 
and the other craft, which 1 found partly loaded with sacks of corn. I was 
in one of the smallest boats with the colonel. When we were ail ready 
to shove ofl^ " Lafont," said he, *^ are the men ready with their eouitaux T^ 

** They are, sir," replied the sergeant. 

^ Then cut the horses' throats — but no firing." A few bubbling groan^ 
and some heavy falls, and a struggling splash or two in the water, snowed ' 
that the poor artillery horses had been destroyed. 

The wind was fair up the river, ^d away we bowted before it It was 
dear to me that the colonel commanding the post had overrated our strength, 
and, under the belief that we had cut him off from Cuxhaven, he hod deter- 
mined on falling back on Hamburgh. 

When the morning broke, we were close to the beautiful bank below 
Altona. The trees were beginning to assume the russet hue of Autumn, 
and the sun shone gayly on ue pretty villas and VUMmwa gmrtena on the hill 
side, while here and there a Chinese pagoda, or other fanciful pleasure- 
house, with its gilded trelUsed work, ana little bells depending from the 
eaves of its many roofs, glancmglike small golden balls, rose from out the 
^t-thinnins recesses of the w<Mds. But ttoe was no life m the scene— 



ton c&meufc's loo. 15 

H?mM ** Qreooe, but Uting Choece no more^'* — not afiilung-bont was near, 
Bcaicely a solitary figure crawled along the beach. 

<< What is that V* after we had passed Blankanese, said the colonel 
quioklj. '* Who are those ?" as a group of three or four men presented 
themselves at a sharp turning of the roaa, that wound idong the toot of the 
Inll cloM to the shore. 

*< The uniform of the Prussians," said one. 

« Of the Russians.'' said another. 

^ Poo/' said a third, '<it is a pjcket of the prince's ;" and so it was, but 
the very fact of his having advanced his outposts so far, showed how he 
trembled for hier position. After answering their hail, we pushed on, and 
as the clocks were striking twelve, we were abreast of the strong beams, 
that were clamped together with iron, and constituted the boom or chief 
water defence of Hamburgh. We passed through, and found an entire 
regiment under u'ms, close bv the custom-house. Somehow or other, I 
had drank deep of that John Bull prejudice, which delights to disparase the 
piiyaioal ooaformation of our Gallic nei^bour, and hugs itself witTi the 
absurd notion, '^that on one pair of Enghsh leas doth march liiree French- 
•men." But when I saw the weather-beaten soldier-like veterans, who form- 
ed this compact battalion, part of the 6Ute of the first corpe^ more command- 
iag in its aspect from severe service, having worn all Uie aiding and lace 
away **• '< there was not a piece of feather in the host *' — I felt 3ie reality 
before me fast overooming my preconceived opinion. I had seldom or ever 
seen so tine a body of men, tall, square, and muscular, the spread of their 
shoulders set off from their hirg^ red worsted epaulets, and Uie solidity of 
the mass increased by their wide trousers, which in my mind contrasted 
advantageously with the long gaiters and tight integuments of our own 
brave fellows. 

We approached a group of three mounted officers, and in a few words 
the officer, whose prisoner I was, explained the affair to the chefde batailhn, 
whereupon I was immediately placed under the care of a sergeant and six 
rank and file, and marched along the chief canal for a mile, where I could 
not help remarking the numberless lar^e rafts — you could not call them 
boats •» of unpainted pine timber, which had arrived firom the upper Elbe, 
loaded with grain ; with gardens, absolute gardens, and cowhouses, and 
piggeries on Doard ; while their crews of ^erlanders, men, women, and 
children, cut a most extraordinary appearance, — the men in their jackets, 
w^ buttons like pot-lids, and trousers fit to carry a month's provender ana 
a couple of children in ; and the women with bearings about the quarters, 
as if they had cut boles in large cheeses, three feet in diameter at least, and 
stuck themselves through them — such stems — and as to their costumes, 
all very fine in a Flemish painting, but the devils appeared to be awfudy 
nasty in real life. 

But we carried on until we came to a large open space fronting a beau- 
tifol piece of water, which I was told was the Alster. As I walked throush 
the narrow streets, I was struck wi^h the peculiarity of the gables of the 
tall houses being all turned towards the thoroughfare, and with the stu- 
pendous size of the churches. We halted for a moment, in the porch of 
«ne of the latter, and my notions of decency were not a litde outraged, by 
seeing it filled with a squadron of dragoons, the men being in the very act 
of cleaning their horses. At length we came to the open space on the 
Alster, a large parade, faced by a street of splendid houses on the left hand, 
with a row of trees between them, and the water on the right There were 
two regiments of foot bivouacking here, with their arms piled under the 
trees, while the men were variously employed, some on duty before the 
houses, others cleaning their accoutrements, and others again playing at all ' 
kiiidB of games. Presently we came to a crowd of soldiers clu8tere<^ 



r4 TOM CRiir&Ls's Locr. 

round a particular spot, some laua;hing, others cracking coarse jests, Imf 
none at all in the least serious. We could not get near enough to see dis- 
tinctly what was going on ; byt we afterwards saw, when the crowd had 
dispersed, three men in the dress of respectable burshers, hanging from a 
low gibbet, — so low in fact, that although their heads were not six inche» 
from the beam, their feet were scarcely three from the ground. I was here 
placed in a guard-house, and kept there until the evening, when I was again 
marched off under my former escort, and we soon arrived at the door of a 
Ikrge mansion, fronting this parade, where two sentries were walking back- 
wards and forwards before the door, while five drasoon horses, linkM toge- 
ther, stood'in the middle of the street, with one soldier attending them, but 
there was no other particular bustle, to mark the head-quarfers of the gen- 
eral commanding. We advanced to the entrance ~ the sentries carrying 
arms — and were immediately ushered into a large saloon, the massiye steir 
winding up along the walls, with the usual heavy wooden balustrade. We 
ascended to the first floor, where we were encountered by three aides-de- 
camp, in full dress, leaning with their backs against the hard-wood railing, 
laughing and joking with each other, while two wall-lamps right opposite 
cast a bright flashing light on their splendid uniforme. They were all 
dicori with one order or another. We- approached. 

** Whence, and who have we here?'' said one of them, a handsome 

oung man, apparently not above twenty-two, as I judged, with small tiny 

lack, jet-black, mustaches, and a noble countenance ; fine dark eyes, and 

carls i&rk and clustering. 

The officer of my escort answered, ** A young Englishman, enseigne de 



k 



vouseou." 



I was no such tlung, as a poor middy has no commission, bat only hie 
rating, which even his captain, without a court-martial, can take away at 
any time, and turn him betore the mast. 

At this moment I heard the clang of a sabre, and the jingle of spars on^ 
the stairs, and the group was joined by my captor. Colonel '^ * *, 

** Ah, Colonel !'* exclaimed ttie aides, in a volley, " where the devil have 
you' come from? We thought you were afBruxelles at the nearest." 

The colonel put his hand on his lips and smiled, and then slapped the 
young officer who spoke first with his glove. " Never mind, bojrs, I have 

come to help you here — you willneed help before- long ; but how is ?" 

Here he made a comical contortion of his face, and drew his ungloved hand 
across his throat. The young ofHcers laughed, and pointed to the door. 
He moved towards it, preceded by the youngest of them, who led the way 
into a very lofly and nandsome room, elegantly furnished, with some fine 
pictures on the walls, a handsome side-board of plate, a rich Turkejr carpet 
— on unusual thing in Germany — on the floor, and a richly ^t pillar, at 
the end of the room farthest from us, the h^e of which contamed a stove, 
which, through the joints of the door of it, appeared to be burning cheerily. 

There were some very handsome sofas and ottomans scattered throu^ 
the room, and a grand piano in one corner, the furniture being covered with 
yellow or amber-coloured velvet, with broad heavy draperies of ^old fringe, 
like the bullion of an epaulet There was a small round taUe near Uie 
Btove, on which stood a silver candlestick, with four branches filled with 
wax tapers ; and bottles of wine, and glasses. At this table sat an officer, 
apparently about forty-five years of age. There was nothing very peculiar 
in nis appearance ; he was a middlb-sized man, well made apparently. Hi6 
sat on one chair, with his legs supported on another. 

His toAif Mopped boots had been taken off, and replaced by a pair of slip- 
shod slippers; his splashed white kerseymere pantaloons, seamed with 
)ld, resUng on the unfrayed velvet cushion ; his blue coat, covered with 
'broidery at the bosom and coHar, was open, and the lappels thrown 



VOM CEUTftlA's LOa* 1$ 

tackt displaying a enmeoiKTelTtt fiMsng, also xiehiy tmhtMend, and an 
embroidered scariet waistcoat ; a larse solitary star slitteied on his bieaa^ 
and the grand cross of the Legion of Honour spariued at his buttonhole ; 
bis black neckerchief had been taken off; and his cocked hat lay beside 
tern on a sofa, massiveiy laced, the edges lichly ornamented with ostrich 
down ; his head was covered with a red velvet cap, with a thick gold cord 
twisted two or three tnmei round it, and ending in two large tassels of heavy 
bnlMon ; he wore very large epaulets, and his sword had been inadvertently, 
as I conjectured, piaead on tne table, so that the steel hilt rested on the or- 
namental part of the metal stove. 

His face was good, his hair dark, forehead without a wrinkle, high and 
mawive, eyes bri^t and sparkling, nose neither fine nor dumpy— >a&ir 
SDOugh proboscis as noses go. There was an ezpressioo about uie upper 
lip and mouth that I did not like ^ a constant nervous sort of ItfUng or the 
lip as it were ; and as the mustache appeared to have been recently sfaAven 
o% there was a white blueness on tne upper lip, that contrasted unplea- 
«a«Uy with the dark tinge which he had fialiantly wrousht for on the Row- 
ing sands of Egypt, ana the bmnzing ot his oeneral features from neree 
sans and parcfamg winds. His bare neck^nd hands were delicately fair, 
Aid former firm a^ muscular, the latter slender and tapering, like a wo* 
man^s. He was reading a gazette, or some printed paper, when we enter- 
ed ; and although there was a tolerable clatter of muskets, sabres, and 
spurs, he never once lifted his eye in the direction where we stood. Opp<^ 
Bite this personage, on a low chair, with his legs crossed, and eyes fixed on 
the ashes that wete dropping from the stove, with bis brown cloak hanging 
from his shoulders, sat a short stout personage, a man about thirty years m 
age^ with fair flaxen hair, a florid complexion, every fair skin, and massive 
German features. 1*he expression of his face, so far as such a countenance 
could be said to have any characteristic expression, was that of fixed sor« 
row. But before 1 could make any other observation, the aid-de-camp ap- 
proached with a good spice of fear and trembling, as I could see. 

" Colonel 'C 'C "C to wait on your highness." 

'* Ah!*' —said the officer to whom he spoke, — *' ah. Colonel, what do 
ywL here ? Has the emperor advanced again ?" 

'* Nck" said the oflicer, ^ he has not advanced ; but the rear-guard Were 
ent off by the Prussians, and the — Ught, with the — •— grenadiers, are now 
in Cnxhaven.** 

** Well," rephed the general, <* but how came you here?*' 

'* Why, Marshal, we were detached to seize a depot of provisions in a 
neighbouring village, and had made preparations to cany them oi^ when we 
were attacked through a gap in the dike, by some armed boats from an 
English squadron, and heanng a distant firing at the very moment, which 
i concluded to be the Prussian advance, I conceived all chance of rejoinins 
the main army at an end, and therefore I shoved off in the grain-boats, and 
here I am." 

'< Glad to see you, however," said the general, ** but sorry for the cause 
why you have returned — Who have we got here — what boy is that ?" 

*^ Why,*' responded the colonel, " that lad is one of the British officers of 
(he force that attacked us.*' 

** Ha," said the general a^n, *'how did you capture him ?'* 

" The boat (one of four) m which he was, was blown to pieces by a six- 
ponnd shot He was the only one of the enemy who swam ashore. The 
rest, I am inclined to think, were mcked up by the other boats." 

" Se," gramUed the general, ** British smps in the Elbe !" 

The colonel continued, " I hope. Marshal, you will allow him his p»- 
fote 9 -* he is, as you see, quite a diild." 



W TOM CRimut's 

" Parole !*' replied the marshal, — *' parole ! such a merelad catmot kiMMV^ 
the value of his promise." 

A sudden fit of rashness came over me. 

** He is a mere boy," reiterated the marshal. ** No^ no — send him t» 
prison ;" and he resumed the study of the printed paper he had been read- 
mg. 

I struck in) impelled by despair, for, young as I was, I knew the charaiv 
ter of the man before whom 1 stood, and I remembered that even a tiger 
might be checked by a bold front — '*I mn an Englishman, sir^ and inca- 
pable of breaking my plighted word." 

He laid down the paper he was reading, and slowly lifted his eyes, and 
iiuitened them on me, — " Ha," said he, *< ha -— so young — so reckless 1'^ 

(< Never mind him, Marshal," said the colonel. '* If you will grant hin^ 
his parole,! »* 

*<Take it, Colonel — take it— take his parole, .not to go beyond the 
ditch." 

*< But I decline to give any such promise," said I, with a hardihood whicb 
at the time surprised me, and has always done so.. 

**Why, my good youth," said the marshal in great surprise, "why will 
you not take advantage of the ofibr — a kinder one, let me tell you, than I 
am in the habit of making- to an enemy V* 

« Simply, sir, because I will endeavour to escape on the very first oppor- 
tunitv." 

<<Ha!" said the marshal once more, "this to myfiice? Lafontaine," 
— to the aid-de-camp, — "a file of soldiers." The handsome young offi- 
cer hesitated — hung in the wind, as we say, for a moment-— moved, as 
I imagined, by my extreme youth. This irritated the marshal ->- he roee^ 
and stamped on the floor. The colonel essayed to interfere. " Sentry — 
sentry — a file of grenadiers — take him forth, and -— •'* here he enei]geti- 
cally clutched the steel hilt of his sword, and instantly dashed it from hun— 
** Sacre ! — the devil — what is that?" and straightway he began toptrou- 
eUe on one leg round the room, shaking his ri^t hand, and blowing faia 
finoers. 

The officers in waiting could not stand it any longer, and burst into afit 
of lliughter, in which their commanding officer, after an unavailing attempt 
to look serious — I should rather write fierce — joined, and there he wasi 
the bloody Davoust — Duke of Auerstad — Prince of E^^kmuhl — the Ham* 
burgh Robespierre — the terrible Davoust — dancing al^ around the rooin, 
in a regular g^ffctu>y fike to split his sides. The heated stove had made his 
sword, whicn rested on it, nearly red-hot. 

AH this while the quiet, plain-looking little man sat stilL He now rose ; 
but r noticed that he had been fixing his eyes intently on me. I thought r 
could perceive a tear glistening in them as he spoke. 

*< Marsha], will you intrust that boy to me ?'* 

"Poo," said the prince, still laughing, "take him — do what you will 
with him ;" — then, as if suddenly recoHectbg himself, "but, Mr. ***^ yolA 
must be answerable for him — he must be at &nd if I want him." 

^ The gentleman who had so unexpectedly patronized me rose, and said 
" Marshal, I promise." 

« Very well," said Davoust. " Lafontaine, desire supper to be sentupu* 

It*was brought in, and my new ally and T were shown ouf. 

As we went down stairs, we looked into a room on the ground floor, •( 
the door of which were four soldiers with fixed bayonets. We there saw, 
for it was well lit up, about twenty or five-and-twenty respectable-looking 
men, very English in appearance, all to their long cloaks, an unusual sort 
of garment to my eye at that time. The night was very wet, and the afor^ 
said garments were hung on pegs in the waU all around the room, which 



vm canroct's uob. 17 

Mng strtingiy heated by a 0tove, the moisture rose up in a thick miat, and 
made l&e faces of the burghers indistinct. 

They were all busily engaged talking to each other, some to his nei^- 
hour, the others across the table, but all with an expression of the most m- 
tense anxiety. 

'* Who are these 7^* said I to my guide. 

« Ask no ouestions here,^ said he, and. we passed on. 

I afterwaras learned that they were the hostages seized on for the contri- 
bntion crif fifty millions of francs, which had been imposed on the doomed 
city, and that this tery night they had been torn from their families, and 
cooped up in the way! had seen them, where, they were advertised, they 
must remain until the money should be forthcoming. 

As we walked along the streets, and crossed the numerous bridges over 
^he canals and branches of the nver,we found all the houses lit up, by order, 
as I learned, ofthe French marshal. The rain descended in torrents, spark- 
ling past the lights, while the city was a desert, with one dreadful exception ; 
fijr we were waylaid at almost every turn by groups of starving lunatics, 
•their half>naked figures and pale visages glimmering in the glancing lights, 
under the dripping rain ; and, had it not been for the numerous sentries 
-scattered atoa^ the thorough fares, I believe we should have been torn to 
pieces by bands of moptnj idiots, now rendered ferocious from their suffer- 
ing, in conse<]nence of the madhouses having been cleared of their miser* 
able, helpless inmates, in order to be converted into barracks for the troops. 
At all of these bridges sentries were posted, past which my conductor and 
myself were frankra by the sereeant who accompanied us giving the coun- 
tersign. At length, civilly touching his cap, although he did not refuse the 
piece of money tendered by my friend, he iefl us, wisning us good night, and 
saying "the coast was clear. 

We proceeded, without farthw challen^, until we came to a very ma^ 
nificent house, with some fine trees before it. We approached the door, and 
Tang the door bell. It was immediately opened, and we entered a large 
desmat&ilookins vestibule, about thirty feet square, filled in the centre with 
a number of bues of g9ods,and a variety of merchandise, while a heavy 
wooden stair, with clumsy oak balustrades, wound round the sides of it. 
We ascended, and, turning to the right, entered a large well-fumished 
Toom, with a table laid out ror supper, with lights, and a comfortable stove 
at one end. — Three young officers of cuirassiers, in their superb uniforms, 
^whose breast and back pieces were glittering on a neignbouring sofa, 
and a colonel of artillery, were standing round the stove. Tiie colond, 
the moment we entered, addressed my conductor : — 

" Ah, ♦*♦, we are devilish hun^ — leh bin dem Verhungem nahe — and 
were just on the point of ordering in the provender had you not appeared." 

" A Uttle more than that,'' thought I, for the food was already smoking 
*Qn the table. 

Mine host acknowledged the speech with a slight smile. 

« Bat who have we 'here ?" said one of the young dragoons. He waited 
a moment — <* Ete$ veus Franetds V^ I gave him no answer. He then ad- 
dressed me in German — « Sfmchtn wie geUtnjifr Deuiaek V* 

** Why,'* chimed in my conductor, *< he does speak a little French indif- 
^ferently enough ; but still " 

Here I was introduced to the young officers, and we all sat down at table ^ 
the colonel, civility itself, pressing my host to drink hit own wine, and eat 
hit own food, and even rating the servants for not being sufficiently alert in 
their attendance on tKeir axon master. 

" Well, my dear •*♦, how have you sped widi the prince ?»* 

^ Why, Colonel," said my protector, in his cool, calm way, '<as well as I 
•expected* I was of some service to him when he was here bcobre, at the time 



he was takM so very SI, and he has not foifaftteii it ; «o I am dot beluded 
among the unfortunate ditentu for the payment of the fine. But that ia not 
aj) ; ^r I am allowed to go to-monrow to my faidier*8, and here is my pass^ 
port" 

" Wonders will never cease," said the colonel ; ''but who isvthat boy 1** 

** He is one of the crew of the Endnh boats which tried to cut off Colonel 
«♦« the other evening near CozhaTen. His life was saved by a very 
lau^ble circumstance certainly ; merely by the marshal's sword, horn 
lestme on the stove, having become almost rejUhot" And here he detailed 
the whole transaction as it took place, which set the party a-Uughing most 
heartily. 

I will always bear witness to the extreme amenity with which I was now 
treated by the F^wnch officers. The evening paesed ever quickly. About 
eleven we retired to rest, mv friend furnishing roe with clothes, and warn- 
ing me, that next morning he would call me at daylight, to proceed la 1^ 
fault's oountry-seat, where he intimated that I must remain in the mean 
time. 

Next morning i was roused acooidinfily) and a long, low, open caina^ 
rattled up to the door, just before dayuawn. Presently the rioHUe was 
beaten, and answered by the different posts in the city, and on the ram- 
parts. 

We drove on, merely showing our passport to the sentries at the difleraot 
bridgee, until we reached the gate, wneae we had to pull up until the officer 
on duty appeared, and had scrupulously compared our penonal appearance 
with tlie written description. All was found correct, and wedrove on. 

It surprised me very much, after having repeatedly heard of the great 
Btren^ of Hamburgh, to look out on the lai^ mound of ereen tnrfthat 
constituted its chief defence. It is all true that there was a deep ditch and 
glads beyond ; but there was no covered way, and both the scarp and 
counterscarp were simple earthen embankments ; so that, had the ditch 
been filled up with fascmes, there was no wafi to face the attacking force 
after crossing it, — ^nothing but a green mound, precipitous eoouglL certainly, 
and crownea with a low pampet of masonxy, and bristhng with batteries 
about half way down, so that the muzacles ef the guns were flush with the 
neighbouring country beyond the ditch. StiR there was Wanting, to my 
imagination, the strong of the high perpendicular wall, with its gaping 
embrasures, and frowning cannon. All this time it never occuned to me, 
that to breach such a defence as that we looked upon was impossible. Yen 
might have plumped your shot into it until vott had converted it into an iron 
mine, but no chasm could have been forced in it by all the artillery in En- 
rope ; so battering in breach was entirely out of the qoestion, and this, in 
truth, constituted the great strength of the place* 

We arrived, after pn horn's <mve, at the villa belon^g to my protee- 
tor's family, and walked into a large room, with a comfortable stove, and 
extensive preparations made for a cmnfortable breakfast. 

Presently turee young ladies appeaiod. They were his sisters ; blue- 
eyed,' fair-haired, white-skinned, round-stemed, plump Uttle partridges. 

« Habm rie geJfriUuhtelU r said the eldest. 

^ Pm eneorej^* said he in French, with a smile. ** But, sistera, I have 
brought a stranger here, a young English officer, who was recently cap- 
tured in tibe river.** 

** An En^sh officer !** exclaimed the three ladies, looking at me^ a poor, 
little, dirty midshipman, in my soiled linen, unbmshed shoes, dirty trousem 
and jacket, with my little square of wlite doth on the collar ; and I hegut 
to find the eloquent blood mantling in my cheeks, and tingling in my ears s 
but their kindly feelings got the better eta gentle propenaty to huigh, and 
the yoQDg^t said «- 



TOM CKIKGLfi's LOG. 19 

" SU rind garade zu reefUar zeU gekomnun :" when, finding that her Ger- 
man was Hebrew to me, she tried the other tack — " Vous arrivez & propose 
U dijeuni est pret," 

H!owevei\ I soon found, that the moment they were assured that I was in 
reality an Englishman, they all spoke English, and exceedingly well too. 
Our meal was finished, and I was standing at the window looking out on a 
small lawn, where evergreens of the most beautiful kinds were checkered 
with little round clumps of most luxuriant hollyhocks, and the fruit-trees in 
the neighbourhood were absolutely bending to the earth under their loads of 
apples and pears. Presently my friend came up to me ; my curiosity could 
no longer be restrained. 

** Pray, ray ^ood sir, what peculiar cause, may I ask, have you for sliow- 
ing me, an entire ^stranger to you, all this unexpected kindness ? I am 
fmiy aware that I have no claim on you." 

'< My good boy, you say true ; but I have spent the greatest part of my 
life in London, although a Hamburger born, and I consider vou, there- 
fore, in the light of a countryman. Besides, I wiU not conceal that your 
gallant bearing before Davoust riveted my attention, and engaged my good 
wishes." 

'* But how came you to have so muc^ influence with the mon— general, 
I mean ?" 

'* For several reasons," he replied. ** For those, among others, you 
heard the colonel — who has takdn the small liberty of turning me out of 
my own house in Hamburgh — mention last night at supper. But a man 
like Davoust cannot be judged of by common rules. He has, in short, 
taken a fancy to me, for which you may thank }rour stars — although your 
life has been actually saved by the pnnce having burned his fingers. — 
But here comes my father.*' 

A venerable old man entered the room, leaning on his stick. I was in- 
troduced in due form. 

<< He had breakfasted in his own room," he said, << having been ailing ; 
but he could not rest quietly, afler he had heard there was an Englishman 
in the house, until he had himself welcomed him." 

I shall never forget the kindness I experienced from these worthy people. 
For three days I was fed and clothed by them as if I had been a member 
of the family. 

Like a boy as I was, I had risen on the fourth momins at gray dawn, to 
be aiding in dragging the fish-pond, so that it might be cleaned out This 
was an annual amusement, in which the young men and women in the 
family, under happier circumstances, had been in the invariable custom ot 
joining ; and, changed as these were, they still preserved the fashion. The 
seine was cast in at one end, loaded at the bottom with heavy sinks, and 
buovant at the top with cork floats. We hauled it along the whole length 
of the pond, thereby driving the fish into an enclosure, about twenty feet 
square, with a sluice towards the pond, and another fronting the dull ditch 
that flowed past beyond it Whenever we had hunted the whole of the 
finny tribes -t- (bamng those slippery youths the eels, who,» with all their 
cleverness, were left to dry in the mucl) — into the toils, we filled all the 
tubs, and pots, and pans, and vessels of all kinds and descriptions, with 
the fat, honest-looking Dutchmen, the carp and tench, who really submit- 
ted to their captivity vrith all the resignation of most ancient and quiet fish, 
scarcely indicating any sense of its irksomeness, except by a lumbering 
slu^ish flap of their broad heavy tails. 

Atransaction of this kind couid not take place among a group of young 

folk without shouts of laughter, and it was not until we had caught the 

whole of the fish in the pond, and placed them in safety, that I had leisure 

to look about me. The city lay about four miles dbtant from us. The 

44—1 



90 TOM CBIITGLE'S I«OG. 

whole country about Hamburgh is level, except the right bank below it of 
the noble river on which it stands, the Elbe. The house whero I was do* 
miciled stood on nearly the highest point of this bank, which gradually 
sloped down into a swampy hollow, nearly level with the river. It then 
rose again gently until the swell was crowned with the beautiful town of 
Altona, ana immediately beyond appeared the ramparts and tall spires of 
the noble city itself. 

The momms had been thick and foggy, but as the »an rose, the white 
mist that had floated over the whole countiy, gradually concentrated and 
settled down into the hollow between us and Hamburgh, covering it with 
an impervious veil, which even extended into the city itself, filling the lower 
part m it with a dense white bank of fog, which rose so high that the 
spires done, with one or two of the most lofty buildings, appeared above 
the rolling sea of white fleece-like vapour, as if it had been a model of the 
stronghold, in place of the reality, packed in white wool, so distinct did it 
appear, diminished as it was in the distance. On the tallest spire of the 
place, which was now sparkling in the early sunbeams, the Brench flag 
waved sluggishly in the faint morning breeze. 

It attracted my attention, and I pointed it out to my pairon. Presently 
it was hauled down, and a series of sisals was made at the yard-arm of 
a spar, that had been slung across it. Who can they be telegraphing to ? 
thought I, while I could notice ray host assume a most anxious and startled 
look, while he peered down into the hollow ; but he could see nothine, as 
the fo^ bank still filled the whole of the space between the city ana the 
acclivity where we stood. 

<* What is that?** said I : "for I heard, or thought I beard, a low rum- 
bling rushing noise in the ravine. Mr. *** beard it as well as I appar- 
ently, for he put his finger to his lips — as much as to say, *' Hold your 
tongue, my good boy — nous verronsy 

It increased — the clattering of horses' hoofs and the clang of scabbards 
was heard, and, in a twinkling, the hussar caps of a squadron of light 
dragoons emerged from out the fog bank, as charging up the road, they 
passed the small gate of green basket-work at a han£ gallop. I ought to 
nave mentioned ^fore, that my friend's house was situated about hall 
way up the ascent, so that the rising ground behind it in the opposite di- 
rection from the city shut out all view towards the country. After the 
dragoons passed, there was an interval of two minutes, when a troop of 
flying aKitiery, with three six-pound field pieces, rattled after the leading 
squadron, the horses all in a lather, at full speed, with the guns bounding 
and jumping behind them as if they had been playthings, foUowed by theur 
caissons. Presently we could see the leading squadron file to the ri^ht — 
clear the low hedge — and then disappear over the crest of the hill. Twen- 
ty or thirty pioneers, who had been carried forward behind as many of the^ 
cavalry, were now seen busily employed in filling up the ditch, and cutting 
down the short scrubby hedge ; and presently, the .artillery coming {sup 
also, filed off sharply to the right, and formed on the very summit of the 
hill, distinctly visible between us and the ^ray cold streaks of morning. 
By the time we had noticed this the clatter m our inmiediate neighbour- 
hood was renewed, and a group of mounted officers dashed past us, up 
the path, like a whirlwind, followed, at a distance of twenty yards, by a 
single cavalier, apparently a general oflicer. These did not stop, as 
they rode at speed past the spot where the artillery were in position, but, 
dipping over the summit, disappeared down the road, from which they did 
not appear to diverge, until they were lost to our view beyond the crest of 
the hilt. The hum and buzz, and, anon, the " measured tread of march- 
ing men," in the valley between us and Hamburgh, still continued. The 
leading files of a light infantry regiment now appeared, swinging along 



TOM CRI^CTGLE's IX>6. $% 

at a round trot, with their muskets poised in their right hands — no 
knapsacks on their backs. They appeared to follow t^e route of tJb.e 
group of mounted officers, until we could see a puiT of white smoke, then 
another, and a third, from the field pieces, followed by thundering reports, 
there being no high ground nor precipitous bank nor water in the neigh- 
bourhood to reflect the sound, ana make it emulate Jove's thunder. At 
this, they struck across the fields, and forming behind the guns, lay down 
flat on their faces, where they were soon hid ^om our view by the wreaths 
of white smoke, as the slug^sh morning broeze rolled it down the hill-side 
towards us. 

<< What the deuce can all this mean — is it a review ?'' said I, in my 
innocence. 

<'A reconnoissance in force,*' groaned my friend: <'the aUied troops 
must be at hand — now, God help us !*' 

The women, like frightened hares, paused to look up in their brother's 
lace, as he kept his eye steadily turned towards the riage of the hill, and, 
when he involuntarily wrung his hands, they gave a loud scream, a fear- 
ful concerto, and ran off into the house. 

The breese at this moment *' aside the shroud of battle cast," and we 
heard a faint bugle-call, like an echo, wail in the distance from beyond the 
hill. It was instantly answered by the loud, startling blare of a dozen of 
the light infantry busies above us on the hill-side, and we could see them 
suddenly start from their lair, and form ; while between us and the clearing 
morning sky, the cavalry, magnified into ^ants in the strong relief on the 
outline of the hill, were driven in stragglmg patrols, like chaffj over the 
summit — their sabres sparkling in the level sunbeams, and the reports of 
the red flashes of their pistols crackling down upon us. 

" They are driven in on the- infantry," said Mr. * * * . He was right— 
but the light battalion immediately charged over the hill, with a loud hur- 
rah, after admitting the beaten horse through their intervsds, who, however, 
to give the devils tneir due, formed again in an instant, under the shelter of 
the high ground. The artillery again opened their fire — the cavalry once 
more advanced, and presently we could see nothing but the field-pieces, 
with thehr three separate groups of soldiers standing quietly by them, — a 
sure proof that the enemy's pickets were now out of cannon-shot, and had 
been driven back on the main body, and that the reconnoisstoK^e was still 
advancing. 

What will not an habitual exposure to danger do, even with tender 
women ? 
. " The French have advanced, so let us have our breakfast, Julia, my 
dear," said Mr. * * * , as we entered the house. " The allied forces 
would have been welcome, however ; and surely, if they do come, they 
will respect our sufferings and helplessness." 

The eldest sister, to whom he spoke, shook her head mournfully ; but, 
nevertheless, betook herself to the task of making coffee. 

"What rumbling and rattling is that?" said * * * to an old servant who 
had just entered the room. 

*^ Two wagons with wounded men, sir, have passed onwards towards 
the town." 

*' Ah!" said mine host, in great bitterness of spirit. 

But allonsj we proceeded to make the best use of our time — ham, good 
— fish, excellent — eggs, fresh — coffee, superb — when we again heard 
the field-pieces above us open their fire, and in the intervals we could dis- 
tinguish the distant rattle of musketry. Presently this rolling fixe slack- 
en^, and, aflerafew scattering shots here' and there, ceased altogether; 
but the cannon on the hill still continued to play. We were by this time 
all standing in a cluster on the porch of the villa, before which stood the 



\ 



TOM CRINOIiS's hOQs 



tubs with the finny spoil of the fish-pond, on a small paddock of velvet 
grass, about forty yards square, separated from the high-road by a low 
ornamental fence of green basket-work, as already mentioned. The firing 
from the great guns mcreased, and every now and then I thought I heard 
• a distant sound, as if the reports of the guns above us had been reflected 
from some precipitous bank. 

" I did not know that there was any echo here," said the youngest girl. 

** Alas, Janette !*' said her brother, " I fear that is no echo ;'* and he put 
up his hand to his ear and listened in brea^less Buapense. The sound was 
repeated. 

**The Russian cannon replyins to those on the hill !** said Mr. * * * ^ 
with startling energy. "God help us! it can no longer oe an affair of 
posts 'j the heads of the allied columns must be in sight, for tiie French 
skirmishers are unquestionably driven in.*' 

A French officer at this moment rattled past us down the road at speed, 
and vanished in the hollow, taking the direction of the town. His hat fell 
oS, as his horse swerved a little at the open gate as he passed. He never 
stopped to pick it up. Presently a round shot, with a loud ringing and 
hissing sound, pitchea over the hill, and knocked oiie of the fish^tubs close 
to us to pieces, scattering the poor fish all about the lawn. With the reck- 
lessness of a mere boy f dashed out, and was busy picking tiiem up, when 
Mr.* * * called to me to come back. 

'* Let us go in and await what may befall ; I dread what the ty — '*here 
he prudently checked himself, remembering, no doubt, ** that a bird of the 
air mi^t carry the matter,'* — *' I dread what he may do, if they are really 
investing the place. At any rate, here, in the very arena where the strug- 
gle will doubtless be fiercest, we cannot abide. So go, my dear sisters, 
and pack up whatever you may have the most valuable, or most necessary. 
Nay, no tears ; and I will attend to our poor old father, and get the car- 
riage ready, if, God help me, I dare use it" 

** But where, in the name of all that is fearful, shall we go ?" said his 
second sister. ** Not back to Hamburgh — not to endure anotiier season 

of such deep degradation — not to be exposed to the Oh brother, you 

saw we all submitted to our fate without a murmur, and laboured cheer- 
fully on the fortifications, when compelled to do so, by that inhuman mon- 
ster Davoust, amidst the ribaldry of a Hcentious soldiery, merely because 
poor Janette had helped to embroider a standard for the brave Hanseatic 
Le^on — you know now we bore this" — here the sweet girl held out her 
delicate hands, galled by actual and unwonted labour — ** and many other 
indignities, untilthat awful night, when — No, brother, we shall await tiie 
arrival of the Russians, even should we see our once happy home converted 
into a field of battle ; but into the city we shall not go.'* 

<' Be it so, then, my dearest sister. — Wilhelm, put up the atuM wagen,'** 

He had scarcely returned into the breakfast-room, when the door opened, 
and a very handsome young ofiicer, the aid-de-camp of the prince, whom 
£ had seen the night 1 was carried before Davoust, entered, splashed up to 
the eyes, and much heated and excited. I noticed blood on tne hilt of his 
sword. His orderly sat on his foaming steed, right opposite where I st(>od, 
wiping his bloody sabre on his horse's mane. The women ^ew pale • but 
still they had presence of mind enough to do the honours with self-posses- 
sion. The stranger wished us a good morning ; and on being asked to sit 
down to breakfast, he unbuckled his sword, threw it from him with a clash 
on the floor, and then, with all the grace in the world, addressed himself to 
discuss the comestibles. He tried a slight • approach to jesting now and 
then ; but seeing the heaviness of heart which prevailed among the women, 
he, with the go<^ breeding of a man of the world, forbore to press his atten- 
tions. 



ton ceinolb's loo» 3d 

Breakfast htan^ finished, and the ladies having retired, he rose, buckled 
itn his sword again, drew on his gloves, and taking his hat in his hand, he 
advanced to the window, and desired his men to " fall in." 

" Men — What men ?*» said poor Mr. * * .* » 

" Why, the marshal has had a company ofsapeurs for these three days 
back in the adjoining village — they are now here." 

" Here !" exclaimed * * * ; " what do the sappers here 7" Two of the 
soldiers carried slow matches in their hands, wnile their muskets were 
slung on their backs* ** There is no mine to be sprung here ?" 

The young officer heard him with great politeness, but declined giving 
any answer. The next moment he turned towards the ladies, and was 
making himself as agreeable as time and circumstances would admit, when 
a shot came crashing through the roof, broke down the ceiling, and knock- 
ing the flue of the stove to pieces, rebounded from the wall, and rolled 
harmlessly beneath the table. He was the only person who did not start, 
or evince any dread. He merely cast his eyes upwards and smiled. He 
then turned to poor * * * ^ who stood quite collected, but very pale, near 
where the stove had stood, and held out his hand to him. 

<* On my honour," said the young soldier, << it grieves me to the very 
heart ; but I must obey my orders* It is no longer an affair of posts ; the 
enemy is pressing on us in force* The allied c^umns are in sight ; their 
cannon-shot have but now penetrated your roof; we have but driven in 
their pickets ; very soon they will be here ; and in the event of their 
advance, my orders are to burn down this house and the neighbouring vil- 
lage." 

A sudden flush rushed into Mr. ***'*& face. .'< Indeed! does the 
prince really " 

The young officer bowed, and with something more of sternness in his 
manner than he had yet used, he said, '* Mr. * * * , I duly appreciate your 
situation, and respect your f^eUngs ; but the Prince of Eckmuhl is my 
superior officer, and under other circumstances — " Here he slightly touched 
the hilt of his sword. 

" For myself I don't care," said * * * , " but what is to become of my 
sisters ?" 

"They must proceed to Hamburgh." 

" Very well — let ine order the stuhl wagent and give us, at all events, 
half an hour to move our valuables." 

Here Mr. * * * exchanged looks with his sisters. 

*' Certainly," said the young officer ; " and I will myself see you safe 
into the city." 

Who says that eels cannot be made used to skinning : The poor girls 
continued their little preparations with an alacrity and presence of mind 
that truly surprised me. There was neither screaming nor fainting, and 
by the time the carriage was at the door, they, with two female domestics, 
were ready to mount I cannot better describe their vehicle, than by com- 
paring it to a canoe mounted on four wheels, connected by a long perch, 
with a coach box at the bow, and three gig 4>odies hung athwart ships, ot 
slun^ inside of the canoe, by leather thongs. At the moment we were 
starung, Mr. * * * came close to me and whispered, " Do you think your 
ship will still be in the river?" 

I answered that I made no doubt she was. 

" But even if she be not," said he, " the Holstein bank is open to us. 
Any where but Hamburgh now." And the scalding tears ran down his 
cheeks. 

At this moment there was a bustle on the hill top, and presently the ar- 
tillery began once more to play, while the musketiy breezed up again in 
the distance. A mounted bugler rode half way down the hiU| anci sounde 



34 TOM cringle's loo. 

the recaU, The young officer hesitated. The man waved his hand, and 
blew the advance. 

" It must be for us — answer it." His bugle did so. ** firing the pitch, 
men — the flax — so now — break the windows, and let the air in — set the 
house on fire ; and Sergeant Guide, remain to prevent it being extinguished 
— I shall fire the village as we pass through." 

He gave the word to face about ; and, desiring the men to follow at the 
Fame swinging run with which the whole of the infantry had originally 
advanced, he spurred his horse against the hUl, and soon disappeared. 

My host's resolution seemed now taken. Turning to the sergeant — 
" My good fellow, the reconnoiasance will soon be returning ; I smill pre- 
cede it into the town." 

The inan, a fine viettx moustoeAe, hesitated. 

My friend saw it, and hit him in a Frenchman's most assailable quarter. 

" The ladies, my good man — the ladies ! — You would not have them 
drive in peU-meU with the troops, exposed most likely to the fire of the Prus- 
sian advanced-guard, would you." • 

The man grounded his musket, and touched his cap — ** Pass on." 

Away we trundled, until, coming to a cross-road, we turned down to- 
wards the river ; and at the angle we could see thick wreaths of smoke 
curling up into the air, showing that the barbarous order had been but too 
effectually fulfilled. 

" What is that ?" said * * *. 

** A horse, with his rider entangled and dragged by the stirrup, passed us 
at full speed, leaving a long track of blood on the road. 

"Who is that?" 

The coachman drove on and gave no answer ; until, at a sharp turn, we 
came upon the bruised and now breathless body of the young officer, who 
had so recently obeyed the savage behests of his brutal commander. — There 
was a musket-shot right in the middle of his fine' forehead, like a small blue 
point, with one or two heavy black drops of blood oozing from it His pale 
features wore a mild and placid expression, evincing that the numberless 
lacerations and bruises, which were evident through nis torn uniform, had 
been inflicted on a breathless corpse. 

The stuhl toagen had carried on for a mile farther or so, but the firing 
seemed to approximate, whereupon our host sung out, " Fahrt Zu, Behica- 
ger-^ Wir Kommennicht tocWer." 

The driver of the stuhl ioagen skulled along until we arrived at the beau- 
tiful, at a mile off, but the beastly, when close to, village of Blankanese. 

When the voiture stopped in the village, there seemed to be a nonrdtutt" 
atwrif to coin a word for tne nonce, between my friend and his sisters. They 
said something very sharply, and with a aegree of determination that 
startled me. He gave no answer. Presently the Amazonian attack was 
renewed. 

" We shall go on board," said they. 

" Very well," said he ; " but have patience, have patience !" 

" No, no. Wann toird man sick einschiffen mussen ?" 

By this time we were in the heart of the village, and surrounded with a 
whole lot, forty at the least, of Blankanese boatmen. We were not long 
in selecting one of the fleetest-looking of those very fleet boats, when we 
all trundled on board ; and I now witnessed what struck me as being an 
awful sign of the times. The very coachman of the stufU wageriy after con- 
versing a moment with his master, returned to his team, tied the legs of the 
poor creatures as they stood, and then with a sharp knife cut their jugular 
veins through and throudi on the right side, having previously reined them 

-> sharp to the left, so that, before starting, we could see three of the te«tm, 



I \ 



TOM CRIKOLS'S LOG. 25 

whix^ consisted of four superb bays, level with the soil and dead ; the 
nearer wheeler only holding out on his forelegs. 

We shoved off at eleven o'clock in the forenoon ; and after having twice 
been driven into creeks on the Holstein shore by bad weather, arrived 
about two next morning safely on board the Torch, which immediately got 
under weigh for Endand. After my story had been told to the captain, 
I left my preserver, nis father, and his sisters in his hands, and I need 
scarcely say that they had as hearty a welcome as the worthy old soiri 
could give them, and dived into the midshipmen's berth for a morsel of 
comfort, where, in a twinkling, I was far into the secrets of a pork-pie. 



CHAPTER II. 

* • THB CRUISE OF THE TORCH. 

Sl^ep, gentle sleep— 
Wilt thou, upoD the high and giddy mast, 
Seal up the ship-boy's eyes, and rock his bntint 
In cradle of the rude imperioua surge; 
And in the visitation of the winds, 
Who take the ruffian billows by the top, 
Curling their monstrous heads, and hanging them 
With deaf ning clamoars in the slippery clouds, 
That, with the hurly, death itself awakes ~ 
Canst thou, O partial sleep ! give thy repose 
To the wet sea- boy in an hour so rude i 

Kino Hcnby IV. 

Heligoland light — north and by west — so many leagues — wind baf* 
fling — weather hazy — Lady passengers on deck for the nrst time. 

Arrived in the Downs — ordered by signal from the guard-ship to proceed 
lo Portsmouth. Arrived at Spithead -^ ordered to fit to receive a general 
officer, and six pieces of field artillery, and a Spanish ecclesiastic, the Canon 
of . Plenty of great guns, at any rate — a regular park of artillery. 

Received General ♦ * * and his wife, and aid-oe-camp, and two poodle- 
dogs, one white man-servant, one black ditto, and the Canon of , and 

the six nine-pound field fieces, and sailed for the Cove of Cork. 

It was blowing hard as we stood in for the Old Head of Kinsale — pilot 
boat breasting the foaming surge like a sea-gull — "Carrol Cove" in her 
tiny mainsail — pilot jumped into the main channel — bottle of rum swung 
by the lead line mto the boat — all very clever. 

Ran in, and anchored under Spike Island. A Ime-of-battle ship, three 
frigates, and a number of merchantmen at anchor -^men-of-war lovely 
craft -^ bands playing — a wood deal of the pomp and circumstance of war. 
Next forenoon, IVlr. Treenail, the second lieutenant, sent for me. 

** Mr. Cringle," said he, " you have an uncle in Cork, I believe ?" 

I said I had. 

" I am going there on duty to-night: I dare say, if you asked the captain 
to let you accompany me, he woidd do so." This was too good an offer 
not to be taken advantage of. I plucked up courage, made my bow, asked 
leave, and got it; and the evening found my friend tlie lieutenant, and 
myself, after a ride of three hours, during which I, for one, had my bottom 
sheathing grievously rubbed, and a considerable botheration at crossing the 
Ferry at Passage, safe in our inn at Cork. I soon found out that the^ object 
of my superior officer was to gain information among the crimp shops, 
where ten men who had run from one of the West-Indianien, waiting at 
Cove for convov. were stowed awav. but I was not let farther into the secret ; 



1 



36 TOM ceiitolk's loo. 

80 1 set out to pay my visit, and after passing a pleasant evening with iny 
friends, Mr. and Mrs. Job Cringle, the lieutenant dropped in upon us about 
nine o'clock. He was heartily welcomed, and under the plea of our being 
obliged to return to the ship early next morning, we soon took leave, and 
returned to the inn. As I was turning into the public room, the door was 
open, and I could see it full of blowsy-taced monsters, gUmmering and jab' 
bering, through the mist of hot brandy grog and gin twist ; with poodle ben* 
jamins, and great-coats, and cloaks of all sorts and sizes, steaming on their 
pe^s, with barcelonas and comforters, and damp travelling caps of seal- 
skin, and blue cloth, and tartan, arranged above the same. Nevertheless, 
such a society, in my juvenile estimation, during my short escapade fretn the 
middy's berth, had its charms, and I was rolling m with a tolerable swagger, 
when Mr. Treenail pinched my arm. 

" Mr. Cringle, come here, into mv room." 

From the way in which he spoke, I imagined, in my innocence, that 
his room was at my elbow; but no such ming — we had to ascend a 
long, and not over-clean staircase, to the fourth floor, before we were shown 
into a miserable little double-bedded room. So soon as we had entered, the 
lieutenant shut the door. 

*' Tom,*' said he, " I have taken a fancy to you, and therefore 1 applied 
for leave to bring you with me ; but I must expose yop to some danger, 
and, I will allow, not altogether in a very creditable way either. <' You 
must enact the spy for a short space." 

I did not like the notion certainly, but I had little time for consideration. 

'< Here,*' he continued— -<< here is a bundle." He threw it on the floor. 
** You must rig in the clothes it contains, and make your way into the 
celebrated crimp shop in the neighbourhood, and pick up all the informa- 
tion you can regarding the haunts of the pressable men at Cove, especially 
with regard to the ten seamen who have run from the West-Indiaman we 
left below. You know the admiral has forbidden pressing in Cork, so 
you must contrive to frighten the blue jackets down to Cove, by represent- 
ing yourself as an apprentice of one of the merchant vessels, who had 
run from his indentures, and that you had narrowly escaped from a press* 
gang this very night here*^ 

I made no scruples, but forthwith arrayed myself in the slops contained 
in the bundle ; in a pair of shag trousers, red flannel shirt, coarse blue cloth 
jacket, and no waistcoat" 

" Now," said Mr. Treenail, " stick a quid of tobacco in your cheek, and 
take the cockade out of your hat ; or stop, leave it, and ship this striped 
woollen night-cap — so — and come along with me," 

We left the house, and walked half a mile down the quay. 

Presently we arrived before a kind of low grog-shop — a bright lamp MCas 
flaring in the breeze at the door, one of the panes of the glass of it being 
broken. 

Before I entered, Mr. Treenail took me to one side — " Tom, Tom Crin- 
gle, you must go into this crimp shop ; pass yourself ofi* for an apprentice 
of the Guava, bound for Trinidad, the ship that arrived just as we started, 
and pick up all the knowledge you can regarding the whereabouts of the 
men, for we are, as you know, eruelly ill manned, and must replenish as 
we best may." I entered the house, after having agreed to rejoin my su- 
perior officer, so soon as I considered I had attained my object. I rapped 
at the inner door, in which there was a small unglazed aperture cut, about 
four inches square ; and I now, for the first time, perceived that a strong 
glare of light was cast into the lobby, where I stood, by a large argand 
with a brilliant reflector, that, like a magazine lantern, had been mortised 
into the bulkhead, at a height of about two feet above the door in which 

^ spy-hole was cut My first wgnal was not attended to j I rapped ogaini 



TOM cringle's loo. 27 

and looking round I noticed Mr. Treenail flitting backwards and forwards 
across the doorway, in the rain, with his pale face and his sharp nose, with 
the sparkling drop at the end on% glancing in the light of the lamp. I 
heard a step within, and a very pretty face now appeared at the wicket 

" Who are you saking here, an* please ye?" 

'' No one in particular, my dear ; but if you don't let me in, I shall be 
lodged in jail before five minutes be over." 

*' I can't help that, young man," said she ; " but where are ye from, 
darling?" 

" Hush ! — I am run from the Guava, now lying at the Cove.'* 

" Oh," said my beauty, " come in ;" and she opened the door, but still 
kept it on the chain in such a way, that although, by bobbing, I creeped 
and slid in beneath it, yet a common-sized man could not possibly have 
squeezed himself through. The instant I entered, the door was once 
more banged to, and the next moment I was ushered into the kitchen, a 
room about fourteen feet sc[uare, with a welU sanded floor, a huge dresser 
on one side, and over agamst it a respectable show of pewter dishes in 
racks against the wall. There was a long stripe of a deal table in the 
middle of the room — but no tablecloth — at the bottom of which sat a 
large, bloated, brandy, or rather whisky-faced savage, dressed in a shabby 
sreat-coat of the hoclden gray worn by the Irish peasantry, dirty swan- 
down vest, and greasy co|rduroy breeches, worsted stockings, and well- 
patched shoes ; he was smoking a long pipe. Around the table sat about 
a dozen seamen, from whose w6t jackets and trousers the heat of the 
blazing fire, that roared up the chimney, sent up a smoky steam, that cast 
a halo round the lamp, that depended from the roof, and hung down within 
two feet of the table, stinking abominably of coarse whue oil. They 
were, generally speaking, hardy, weather-beaten men, and the greater pro- 
portion half, or more than half drunk. When I entered, 1 walk^ up to the 
landlord. 

" Yo ho, my young un, whence and whither bound, my hearty ?" 

" The first don't signify much to you," said I, *' seeing 1 have where- 
withal in the locker to pay my shot ; and as to the second, of that here- 
after ; so, old boy, let's have some grog, and then say if you can't ship 
me with one of tnem coUiers that are lying alonpide the quay ?" 

'* My eye, what a lot of brass that small chap has !" grumbled mine host. 
^ Why, my lad, we shall see to-morrow morning ; but you gammons so 
bad about the ihino, that we must prove you a bit ; so, ICate, my dear," 

— to the pretty girl who had let me in — <' score a pint of rum against 

Why, what is your name ?" 

" What's that to you ?" rejoined I ; << let's have the drink, and don't doubt 
but- the shiners shall be forthcoming." 

<' Hurrah !" shouted the party, most of them now ver}' tipsy. So the rum 
was produced forthwith, and as I lighted a pipe and filled a glass of swizzle, 
2 struck in, <' Messmates, I hope you have all shipped ?" 

" No, we han't," said some of them. 

" Nor shall \re be in any hurry, boy," said others. 

" Do as YOU please, but I shall, as soon as I can, I know ; and I recom- 
mend all of you making yourselves scarce to-night, and keeping a bright 
look-out" 

"Why, boy, why?" 

*^ Simply because I have just escaped a press-gang, by bracing s|iarp up 
at the comer of the street, and shoving into this dark alley here." 

" This called forth another volley of oaths and unsavoury exclamations, 
and all was bustle and confusion, and packing up of bundles, and settling 
of reckonings. 

" Where," siud one of the seamen, — " where do you go to, my lad ?" ■ 



^ TOM crinolb's Loe. 

'< Why, if I can't get shipped to-nisht, I shall trandle down to Cove im- 
mediately, so as to cross at Passage before daylight, and take my chance 
c^ shippms with some of the outward-bound that are to sail, if the wind 
holds, the day after to-morrow. There is 4o be no pressing when blue 
Peter flies at the fore — and that was hoisted this aftemoonTl know, and 
the foretopsail will be loose to-morrow." 

"D— n my wig, but the small chap is right,'* roared one. 

** Tve a bloody great mind to go down with him," stuttered another, after 
several unavailing attempts to weigh from the bench, where he had brought 
himself to anchor. 

'< Hurrah !" yelled a third, as he hugged me, and nearly suflbcated me 
vnth his maudlin caresses, <* I trundles wid you ^oo^ my darling, by the 
piper." 

**Have with you, boy — have with you," shouted half-a-dozen other 
voices, while each stuck his oaken twig throu^ the handkerchief that held 
his bundle, and shouldered it, clapping his straw or tarpaulin hat, with a 
slap on the crown, on one side of his head, and staggering and swaying about 
under the influence of the poteen, and slapping bis thigh, as he bent double, 
laughing like to split himself, till the water ran over his cheeks from his 
drunken half-shut eyes, while jets of tobacco juice were squirting in all di- 
rections. 

I paid the reckoning, urging the party to proceed all the while, and indi- 
cating Pat Doolan's at the Cove as a good rendezvous ; and promising to 
overtake them before they reached Passage, I parted company at the cor- 
ner of the street, and rejoined the lieutenant. 

Next morning we spent in looking about the town — Cork is a fine town 
— contains seventy thousand inhabitants, more or less — safe in that — and 
three hundred thousand pigs, driven by herdsmen, with coarse gray great- 
coats. The pigs are not so handsome as those in England, where the legs 
are short, and tails curly : here the legs are long, the flanks sharp and thin, 
and tails long and strait. 

All classes speak with a deuced brogue, and worship graven images : 
arrived at Cove to a late dinner -^ and here follows a great deal of nonsense 
of the same kind. 

By the time it was half-past ten o'clock, I was preparing to turn in, when 
the master-at-arms called Sown to me,- ^ ^ ^ 

" Mr. Cringle, you we wanted in the gunroom." 

I put on my jaciLet again, and immediately proceeded thither, and on my 
way I noticed a group of seamen, standing 'on the starboard gangway^ 
dressed in pea-jackets, under which, by the light of a lantern, carried by 
one of them, I could see they were all armed wi3i pistol and cutlass. They 
appeared in great glee, and as they made way for me, I could hear one fel- 
low whisper, '* There goes the little beagle." When I entered the gun- 
room, the first lieutenant, master, and purser, were sitting smoking and 
enjoying themselves over a glass of cold grog — the gunner taking the watch 
on deck — the doctor was piping any thing but meilifluously on the double 
flageolet, while the Spanish pnest, and aid-de-camp to the general, were 
playing at chess, and wranghng in bad French. I could hear Mr. Tree- 
nail rumbling and stumbling in his stateroom as he accoutred himself in a 
jacket similar to those of the armed boat's crew whom I had passed, and 
presently he stepped into the gunroom, armed also with a cutlass and 
pistol. 

<* Mr. Cringle, get ready to go in the boat with me, and bring your aims 
with you. 

I now knew whereabouts he was, and that my Cork friends were the 
quarry at which we aimed. I did as I was ordered, and we immediately 
pulled on shore, where, leaving two strong fellows in charge of the boat, 



TOM CftlNOLfi's LOG. 99 

with instntctioiis to fire their pistols and shove ofT a couple of boat-lengths, 
shoald any suspicious circumstance indicating an attack take place, we 
separated, like a pulk of Cossacks coming to uie charge, but without the 
kourah, with orders to meet before Pat Doolan^s door, as speedily as our legs 
could carry us. We had landed about a cable's length to the hght of the 
Wgh precipitous bank — up which we stole in straggling parties — on which 
that abominable congregation of the most filthy huts ever pig grunted in is 
situated, called the Holy Ground. Pat Doolan's domicile was in a little 
dirty lane, about the middle of the village. Presently ten strapping fellows, 
including the lieutenant, were before the door, each man witH his stretcher 
in his hand. It was a very tempestuous although moonUght night, occa- 
sionally clear, with the moonbeams atone moment sparkling bnghtly in the 
email ripples on the filthy puddles before the door, and on the gem^ike water- 
drops that hung from the eaves of the thatched roof, and lighting up the 
dark statue-like figures of the men, and casting their long shadows strongly 
against the mud wall of the house ; at anomer a black cloud, as it flew 
across her disk, cast every thing into deep shade, while the only noise we 
heard was the hoarse dashing of the distant surf, rising and falling on the 
fitful gusts of the breeze. We tried the door. It was fast 

" Surround the house, men," said the lieutenant, in a whisper. He rap- 
ped loudly. *' Pat Doolan, my man, open the door, will ye?" No answer. 
"If you don't, we shall make free to break it open, Patrick, dear." 

All this while the light of a fire, or of candles, streamed through the joints 
of the door. That threat at length appeared to have the desired effect A 
poor decrepid old man undid the bolt and let us in. " Ohon a ree ! Ohon a 
ret! What make you all this bodder for— come you to help us to wake 
poor-ould Kate there, and bring you the whisky wid you ?" 

" Old man, where is Pat Doolan ?" said the lieutenant 

" Gone to borrow whisky, to wake ould Kate, there ; — the howling Mrill 
begin whenever Mother Doncannon and Misthress Conolly come over from 
Middleton ; and I look for dem every minute." 

There was no vestige of any living thing in the miserable hovel, except 
the old fellow. On two low trestles, in the middle of the floor, lay a coffin 
with the lid on, on (he top of which was stretched the dead body of ah old 
emaciated woman in her grave-clothes, the (|uality of which was much finer 
than one could have expected to have seen m the midst of the surrounding 
squalidness. The face of the corpse was uncovered, the hands were crossed 
on the breast, and there was a plate of salt on the stomach. 

An iron cresset, charged with coarse rancid oil, hung from the roof, tho 
dull smoky red light flickering on the dead corpse, as the breeze streamed 
in through the door and numberless chinks in the walls, making the cold, 
rigid, sharp features appear to move, and glimmer, and gibber as it were, 
from the changing shades. Close to the head, Uiere was a small door 
opening into an apartment of some kind, but the coffin was placed so near 
it, that one could not pass between the body and the door. 

** My good man," said Treenail, to the sohtary mourner, " I must beg 
leave to remove the body a bit, and have the goodness to open that door." 

"Door, yere honour! ifs no door o' mine — and it's not opening that 
same, that old Phil Carrol shall busy himself wid." 

" Carline," said Mr. Treenail, quick and sharp, " remove the body." It 
was done. 

<* Cruel heavy the old dame is, sir, for all her wasted appearance," said 
one of the men. 

The lieutenant now ranged the press-gang against the wall fronting the 
door, and stepping hxto the middle of the room, drew his pistol and cocked 
it " Messmates^" he sung out, as if addressing the skulkers in the other 
room, " I know you are here — the house is surrounded — > and unless you 



go TOM CBIHGLS'S L0»; 

open that door now, by the powers, but I'll fire slap into you.*' There wtJt 
a bustle, and a rumbUng tumbling noise within. , <* My lads, we are now 
sure of our game,** sung out Treenail, with great animation. '< Sling that 
clnmsy bench there.'* He pointed to an oaken form about eight feet 1^^ 
and nearly three inches thicK. To produce a two-inch rope, and jnnk it 
into three lengths, and rig tbef battering-ram, was the work of an mstant 
<* Qne, two, three,*' — anfTbans, the door flew open, and there were our men 
stowed awa]^, each sitting on me top of his ba^, as snus as could be, al- 
though looking very much like condemned thieves. We bound ei^t of 
them, and thrusting a stretcher across their backs, under their arms, and 
lashing the fins to me same by good stout lanyards, we were proceeding^to 
stump our prisoners off to the boat, when with the innate devilry ^i I have 
inherited, 1 know not how, but the original sin of which has mpte than once 
nearly cost me my life, I said, without addressing my superior officer, or 
any one else, directly, — "I should like now to scale my pistol throa^H that 
comn« If 1 miss, I can't hurt the old woman ; and f^'^eyelet hole in the 
coffin itself, will only b^ an act of civility to the wor(fi4;l*''- 

f looked towards my superior officer, who answerecf mer'Wilh a knowing 
shake of the head. I advanced, while all was sileYit aiT death — the sharp 
click of the pistol lock now struck acutely on ray own ear. I presented, 
when — crash — the lid of the coffin, old woman and all, was dashed offin 
an instant, the corpse flying up in tite air, and then' falling heavily on the 
floor, rolling over and over, while a tall, handsome fellow, in his striped 
flannel shirt and blue trousers, with the sweat pouring down over his (ace 
in streams, sat up in the shell. 

** All right," said Mr. Treenail, — " help him out of his berth." 

He was pinioned like the rest, and fortnwith we walked them all ofi* to 
the beacli. Bv this time there was an unusual bustle in the Holy Ground, 
and we could near many an anathema, curses, not loud but deep, ejacula- 
ted from many a half-opened door as we passed along. We reached the 
boat, and time it was we did so, for a number of stout fellows, who bad fol- 
Ipwed us in a gradually increasing crowd, until they amounted to forty at 
the fewest, now nearly surrounded us, and kept closing in. As the last of 
us jumped into the boat, they made a rush, so that if we had not shoved oft 
with the speed of light, I think it very likely that we should have been 
overpowered. However we reached the ship in safety, and the day fol- 
lowing we weighed, and stood out to sea with our convoy. 

It was a very large fleet, nearly three hundred sail ot merchant vessels 
-^ and a noble sight truly. 

A line-of-battle ship led — and two frigates and three sloops of our class 
were stationed on the outskirts of the fleet, whipping them in as it were. We 
made Madeira in fourteen days, looked in, but did not anchor ; superb 
island — magnifiren* mnun tains — white town —'and all very fine, but no- 
thing particular nap{)eiioi. » * hfee weeks. One fine evening, (we had by 
this time progressed into the trades, and were within three mmd red miles 
of Barbadoes,) the sdn had set bright and clear, after a most beautiful day, 
and we were bowling along right before it, rolling like the very devil ; but 
there was no moon, and although the stars sparkled brilliantly, yet it was 
dark, and as we were the sternmost of the men-of-war, we had Uie task ot 
whipping in the sluggards. It was my watch on deck. A gun from the 
commodore, who showed a- number of lights. ''What is that, Mr. Kenne- 
dy ?" said the captain to the old gunner. — " The commodore has made the 
night siornal for the sternmost ships to make more sail and close, sir." We 
repeated the signal — and stood on baiUng the dullest of the merchantmen 
in our neighbourhood to make more sail, and firing a musket shot now and 
then over the more distant of them. By and by we saw a large West India- 
man suddenly haul her wind, and stand across our bows. 



»0M e&uroLK'a iiO«. 31 

" Forward, there !^ sung out Mr. Splinter, " stand by to fire a shot at that 
leUow from the boat gun ifhe does not bear up. What can he be after ? — 
^rgeant Armstrong,'' — to a marine, who was standing close by him in 
Ae waist — ** get a musket, and fire over him," 

It was done, and the ship immediately bore up on her course again ; we 
now ranged alongside of mm on his larboard quarter. 

"Ho, the ship, ahoy!"— "HilloT was the reply.— " Make more sail, 
■tr, and run into the body of the fleet, or I shall nre into you ; why don't 
you, sir, keep in the wake of the commodore!'' "No answer. *'What 
meant you by hauling your wind, iust now, sir ?" 

*< Yesh, yesh," at length responded a voice from tlie merchantman. 

" Something wrong here," said Mr. Splinter. " Back your maintopsai!, 
nr, and hoist a light at the peak ; I shall send a boat on board of^you. 
BcNBitswahi's mate, pipe away the crew of the jolly boat" We also hove to^ 
and were in the act oSflQweang down the boaL when the officer rattled out, 
'(Keep all fast, with the bdiieit:; J can't comprehend that chap's manosuvres, 
for the soul of me. He has not Jftae to." Once more we were within pis- 
tol-shot of him. " Why don't you^Seave to, sir ?" All silent. 

Presently we could perceiTe a confiidi9n and noise of struggling on board, 
and angry voices, as it-people were trying to force their way up the hatcb* 
ways from below ; and a heavy thumping on the deck, and a creaking of 
the blocks, and rattling of the cordage, while the main-yard was first braced 
one way, and then another, as if two parties were striving for the mastery. 

At length a voice hailed distinctly — " We are captured by a ** A sudr 

den sharp cry, and a splash overboard, told of some fearful deed. 

** We are taken by a privateer or pirate," sung out another voice. This 
was followed by a heavy cmnching blow, as when the spike of a butcher's 
axe is driven through a bullock's forehead deep into the brain. 

By this time all hands had been called, and the word had been passed to 
clear away two of the foremost canonades on the starboard side, and to 
load them with ^rape. 

'' On board there — get below, all you of the English crew, as I shall 
fire with grape," sung out the captain. 

The hint was now taken. The ship at length came to the wind — we 
founded to, under her lee — and an armed boat, with Mr. Treenail and 
myself, and sixteen men, with cutlasses, were sent on board. 

We jumped on deck, and at the gangway, Mr. Treenail stumbled, and 
fell over the dead body of a man, no doubt the one who had hailed last, 
with his skull cloven to (he eyes, and .» broken cutlass-blade sticking in 
the gash. We were immediately accosted by the mate, who was lashed 
down to a ring-bolt close by the bits, with his hands tied at the wrists by 
sharp cords, so tightly that the blood was spouting from beneath his nails. 

« We have been surprised by a privateer schooner, sir; the lieutenant of 
her, and twelve men, are now in the cabin." 

" Where are the rest of the crew }" 

** Ail secured in the foiecastle, except the second mate and boatswain, 
the men who hailed you just now *, the last was knocked on the head, and 
tha former was stabbed and thrown overboard. 

We immediately released the men, eighteen in number^ and armed them 
witii boarding pikes. " What vess^ is that astern of us ?" said Treenail 
to liie mate, nefore he could answer, a shot from the brig fired at the 
privateer showed she was broad awake. Next moment Captain Deadcye- 
MJied. << Have you mastered the prize crew, Mr. Treenail?" — ''Aye, 
aye, sir." <* Then keep your course, and keep two lights hoisted at your 
mizen peak during the night, and blue Peter at the maintopsail yard-ain^ 
when ue day breaks ; 1 shall haul my wind after the suspiioioos sail in 
year wake." 



0S TOM CBIKGLIS'S LOO. 

Anollier shot, and another, firom the brig — the time betweM eadi fUA 
tnd the renort increasing with the distance. By this the fieutenant 
bad descended to the cabin, followed by his people, while the merchant crew 
once more took the charge of the ship, crowding sail into the body of the 
feet 

I followed him close, pistol and cutlass in hand, and I shall never foi^t 
the scene that presented itself when I entered. The cabin was that of a 
▼essel of five hundred tons, elegantly fitted up ; the panels filled with 
crimson cloth, ed^ed with gold mouldmgs, with superb damask hangings 
before the stern windows and the side berths, and brilliantly lighted up bj 
two large swinging lamps hun^ from the deck above, which were reflected 
from, and multiplied in, several plate glass mirrors in the panels. In the 
recess, which in cold weather had been occupied by the stove, now stood a 
aplendid grand piano, the silk in the open work above the keys correspond- 
ing with the crimson cloth of the paaels ; it was open, a Leghorn bonnet 
with a green veil, a parasol, and two long white ^oves, as if recently pidled 
off, lay on it, with the very mould of the hands m them. 

The rudder case was particulaiiy beautiful : it was a richly carved and 
gilded palm-tree, the stem painted white, ana interlaced with golden iret- 
work, like the lozenges of a pine-apple, while the leaves spread upland 
abroad on the roof. 

The table was laid for supper, with cold m^at, and wine, and a profunon 
^silver things, all sparkling bn^htly ; but it was in great disorder, wine 
■pilt, and glasses broken, and dishes with meat upset, and knives, and 
forks, and spoons, scattered all about. She was evidently one of those 
London West-Indiamen, on board of which I knew there was much splen- 
dour and great comfort. But, alas> ! the hand of lawless violence had betin 
there. Tlie captain lay across the table, with his head hanging over 
the side of it next 4o us, and unable to help himself, with his fiinds tied 
behind his back, and a gag in his mouth ; lus face pufple from the blood 
running to his head, and the white of his eyes turned up, while his load 
ateitoroos breathing but too clearly indicated the rupture of a vessel on the 
brain. 

He was a stout portly man, and, although we released him on the instant, 
and had him bled, and threw water on his face, and did alt we could for 
him, he never spoke afterwards, and died in half an hour. 

Four gentlemanly-looking men were sitting at table, lashed to their 
chairs, pale and trembling, while six of the most rufiianrlooking scoundrel* 
I ever beheld, stood on the opposite side of the table in a row fronting ua, 
with the light from the lamps ahining full on tbem. Three of them wore 
small but very square mulattoes ; one was a Sou^ American Indian, with 
the square high-boned visage, and long, lank, black glossy hair of his cast. 
These four had no clothing beside their trousers, and stood with their armv 
folded, ill all the calmness of desperate men, caught in the very fact of some 
horrible atrocity, which they knew shot out all hope of mercy. The two 
otiiers were white Frenchmen, tall, bushy- whiskered, sallow desperadoes, 
but still, wonderful to relate, with, if I may so speak, the maiiners of gen- 
flemen. One of them squinted, and had a hair lip, which mye him a dcm'- 
rible expression^ They were dressed in white trousers, ana shitts, yellow 
4ilk sasnes round their waists, and a sort of blue uniform jackets, blue 
Ghiscqn caps, with the peaks, frOm each of which depended a large bullioi> 
tastiel,* hanging down on one side of their heads. The whole party had 
apparently maae up their minds that resistance was vain, ibr their pistola 
and cutlasses, some of them bloody, had been all laid on the table, with tiio 
Ifotts and handles towards us, contrasting horribly with the glittering eq^ 
page of steel, and crystal, and silver things, on the snow-white damask tables 



TOM CKISOLX'S LOG. 33 

«loth. They were immediately seized and ironed, to which they submitted 
in silence. We next released the passen^rs, and were overpowered with 
thanks, one dancing, one crying, one laughing, and another praying. But, 
merciful heaven I what an object met our eyes ! Drawing aside the curtain 
that concealed a sofa, fitted into a recess, there lay, more dead than alive, a 
tall and most beautiful girl, her head resting on her left arm, her clothes 
disordered and torn, blood on her bosom, and foam on her mouth, with her 
long dark hair loose and dishevelled, and covering the upper part of her 
deadly pale face, through which her wild sparkling black eyes^ protruding 
flora their sockets, glanced and glared witn the me of a mamac*s. while 
her blue lips kept gmbering an incoherent prayer one moment, and the next 
imploring mercy, as if she had still been m the hands of those who knew 
not the name ; and anon, a low hysterical laugh made our veiy blood freeze 
in oar boeoms, which soon ended in a long dismal yell, as she rolled off the 
ooach opon the hard deck, and lay in a dead faint 

Alas the day ! — a maniac she was from that hour. She was the only 
dau^ter of the murdered master of the ship^ and never awoke, in her un- 
clooded reason, to the fearful consciousness of her own dishonour and b^r 
parent's death. 

The Torch captured the schooner, and we led the privateei's men at 
Barbadoes to meet their reward, and several of the merchant sailors were 
turned over to the guardship, to prove the facts in the first instance, and to 
aenre his majesty as impressed men in the second, — but scrimp measure 
of justice to the poor ship^s crew. 

Anchored at Carlisle Bay, Barbadoes. — Town seemed built of cards — 
black faces, showy dresses of the negroes — dined at Mr. C 's — capi- 
tal dinner — little breeze mill at the end of the room, that pumped a solution 
of saltpetre and water into a trough of tin, perforated ^ntn small holes, be- 
low wiiich, and exposed to the breeze, were ranged the wine and liqueurs, 
all in cotton bags ; the water then flowed into a well, where the pump was 
stepped, and thus was again pumped up and kept circulating. 

Lianded the artillery, me soldiers, officers, and the Spanisn canon — diih- 
charged the whole battery. 

Next morning, weighed at day-dawn, with the trade for Jamaica, and 
soon lost si^t of the bright blue waters of Carlisle Bay, and the smiling 
fields and taU coco8i-nut trees (^the beautiful island. In a week after we 
arrived oiTthe east end of Jamaica, and that same evening, in obedience to 
the orders of the admiral on the VVindward Island station, we hove to in 
Ball Bay, in order to land despatches, and secure our tithes of the crews of 
the merchant- vessels bound for Kingston, and the ports to leeward, as they 
passed u& We had fallen in with a pilot canoe on Morant Bay with four 
negroes on board, who requested us to hoist in their boat, and take them all 
on board, as the pilot schooner, to which they belonged, had that morning bore 
up for Kingston, and left instructions to them toiollow her in the first ve»- 
sel appearing afterwards. We did so, and now, as it was getting dariL, the 
captain came npto Mr. Treenail. 

'< Why, Mr. Treenail, 1 think we had better heave-to for the night, and 
in this case i shall want you to go in the gutter to Port Royal to deliver 
the despatches on board the fla^-ship." 

** I don*t think the admiral will be at Port Royal, sir,'* responded the 
heutenant ; ** and, if I might suggest, those black chaps have offered to 
take me ashore here on the Palitadoea, a narrow spit of land, not above one 
handrod-'yards across, that divides the harbour from. the ocean, and to 
haul the canoe across, and take me to the agent's house in Kington, who 
will doubtless frank me up to the pen, where the admiral resides, and I 
•hall thus deliver the letters, and be b&ck again by day-dawn." 



94 TOM crikole's log. 

'* Not a. bad plan,'* said old Deadeye ; **pi3t it in execution, and I will 
go below and get the despatches immediately." 

The canoe was once more hoisted out ; the three black fellows, the pilot 
of the ship continuing on board, jumped into her alongside. 

^'Had vou not better take a couple of hands with yon, Mr. Treenail?*' 
said the skipper. 

'' Why, no, sir, I don't think I shall^^ant them ; but if you will spare 
me Mr, Cringle, I will be obliged, in case I want any help." 

We shoved ofi) and as the glowing sun dipped under rortland Point, as 
the tongue of land that runs out about four miles to the southward, on the 
western side of Port Royal harbour, is called, we arrived within a hundred 
yards oi the Palisadoes. The surf, at the particular spot we steered for, 
aid not break on the shore in a rolling curling wave, as it usually does, bat 
smoothed away under the lee of a small sandy promontory that ran out 
into the sea, about half a cable's length to windward, and then slid up the 
smooth white sand, without breakitig, in a deep clear green swell, for the 
space of twenty ^ards, gradually shoaling, the colour becoming lighter 
and lighter, untd it frothed away m a shallow white fringe, that buzzed as 
it receded back into the deep green sea, until it was again propelled for- 
ward by the succeeding billow. 

'' I say, friend Bungo, how shall we manage ? You don't mean to 
swamp us in a shove through that surf, do you 1^ said Mr. Treenail, 

** No fear, massa, if you and todder leetle man-of-war buccra, only keep 
dem seat when we rise on de crest of de swell dere." 

We sat quiet enough. Treenail was coolness itself, and I aped tiim as 
well as I could. The load murmur, increasing to a roar, of the sea, was 
trying enough as we approached, buoyed on the last long undulation. 

" Now sit still, massa, bote." 

We sank down into the trough, and presently were hore forwards with 
a smooth sliding motion up on me beach— until grit, grit, we stranded on 
the cream-coloured sand, nigh and dry. 

" Now jump, massa, jump." 

We leaped with all our strength, and thereby toppled down on our noses ; 
the sea receded, and before the next billow approached, we had run the 
canoe twenty yards beyond high water mark. 

It was the work of a very few minutfis to haul the canoe across the 
'sand-bank, and to launch it once more in ttie placid waters of the harbour 
of Kingston. We pulled across towards the town, until we landed at the 
bottom of Hanover-street ; the lights from the cabin windows of the mer- 
chantmen glimmering as we passed, and the town only discernible from a 
solitary sparkle here and there. But the contrast when we landed was 
very striking We had come through the darkness of the night in com- 
parative quietness ; and in two hours from the time we had left the eld 
Torch, we were transferred from her orderly deck to the bustle of a crowded 
town. 

One of our crew undertook to be the guide to the agent's house. We 
arrived before it It was a large mansion, and we oould see lights glim- 
mering in the ground-floor ; but it was gayly lit up aloft. The house itself 
stood back about twenty feet from the street, from which it was separated 
by an iron railing. 

We knocked at the outer gate, but no one answered. At length our 
black guide found out a bell-pull, and presently the clang of a bell re- 
sounded throughout the mansion. Still no one answered. I pushed 
against the door, and found it was open, and Mr. Treenail and myself 
immediately ascended a flight of six marble steps, and stood in the 
lower piazza, witii the hdl, or lower vestibule, before us. We entered. 
A very well-dressed brown woman, who was sitting at her work at a 



TOM CmiMQLX's LOCK 35 

■mall table, along with two young giris of the same complexion, instantly 
vose to receive us. 

"Beg pardon^'* said Mr, Treenail, *< pray, i^ this Mr. ^'s house ?'* 

** Yes, sir, it is.'' 

^ Will you have the goodness to say if he be at home ?" 

*^ Oh yes, sir, he is dere upon dinner wid company,'' said the lady. 

" Well," continued the Ueutenaut, " say to him, that an officer of his 
majesty's sloop Torch is below, with despatches for the admiral." 

" Surely, sir, — surely," the dark lady continued ; — " Follow me, sir ; 
and dat small gentleman, ^ [Thomas Cringle, Esquire, no less !] — him 
will better follow me too." 

We left the room, and, turning to the right, landed in the lower piazza 
<^ the house, fronting the north. A large clumsy stair occupied the east- 
ernmost end, with a massive mahogany balustrade, but the whole affair 
bdow was very ill lighted. The brown lady preceded us ; and, planting 
herself at the bottom of the staircase, began to shout to some one above — 

" Toby I — Toby I — buccra gentlemen arrive, Toby." But no Toby 
responded to the call. 

*< My dear madam," said Treenail, ** I have little time for ceremony. 
Pray usher us up into Mr. 's presence." 

" Den follow' me, gentlemen, please." 

Forthwith we all ascended the dark staircase until we reached the first 
Landing-place, when we beard a noise as of two negroes wrangling on the 
steps above us. 

" You rascal !" sang out one, ** take dat ; lam you for teal my wittal !" 
— then a sharp crack, as if he had smote the culprit across the pate; 
whereupon, like a shot, a black fellow, in a handsome livery, trundled 
down, pursued by another servant with a large silver ladle in his hand, 
with wnich he was belabouring the fugitive over his flint-hard skull, risbt 
Against our hostess, with the drumstick of a turkey in his hand, or ratner 
in his mouth. 

"Top, you tiefl — Top, you tief! — for me piece dat," shouted the 
pursuer. 

" You dam rascal !" quoth the dame. But she had no time to utter 
another word, before the fugitive pitched, with all his weight, right against 
her ; and at the very monient another servant came trundling down with a 
large tray-full of all kinds of meats — and I especially remember that two 
large crystal stands of jellies composed part of his load — so there we 
were regularly capsized, and caught all of a heap in the dark landing- 
place, half way up the stair ; and down the other ffight tumbled our guide, 
with Mr. Treenail and myself, and the two black ies, on the top of her, 
rolling in our descent oyer, or rather into, another large mahogany tray 
which had just been carried out, with a tureen of turtle soup in it, and a 
dish of roast-beef, and platefuUs of land-crabs, and the Lord knows what 
all besides. 

The crash reached the ear of the landlord, who was seated at the head 
of his table in the upper piazza, a long gallery about fifty feet long by four- 
teen wide, and he immeoiately rose and ordered his butler to take a light 
When he came down to ascertain the cause of the uproar, I shall never 
forget the scene. 

There was, first of all, mine host, a remarkably neat personage, standing 
on the polished mahogany stair, three steps above his servant, who was a 
verr well-dressed respectable elderly negro, with a candle in each hand ; 
ana beneath him, on the landing-place, lay two trays of viands, broken 
tureens of soup, fragments of dishes, and fractured glasses, and a chaos of 
eatables and diinkusles, and table gear scattered all about, amidst which 
lay scmmbling my lieutenant and myself, the brown house keeper, and the 
2* 



S6 TOM c&ikole's 1:^6. 

two negro servants, all more or less covered with gravy and wine dregs. 
However, after a good laugh, we gathered ourselves up, and at length we 
were ushered on the scene. Mine host, after stifling his lau0;hter the best 
way he could, again sat down at the head of tiis table, sparkling with crys- 
tal and waxlights, with a superb lamp hung overhead. The company was 
composed chiefly of naval and military men, but there was also a sprinkling 
ofciviUans, or mufteest to use a West India expression. Most of them 
rose as we entered, and after they had taken a glass of wine, and had 
their lauoh at our mishap, our landlord retired to one side with Mr. Tree- 
nail, while I, poor little middy as I was, remained standing at the end of 
the room, close to the head of the stairs. The gentleman who sat at the 
foot of the table had his back towards me, and was not at first aware of 
my presence. But the guest at his right hand, a happy-looking, red-faced, 
well-dressed man, soon drew his attention towards me. The party to 
whom I was thus indebted seemed a very jovial-looking personage, and 
appeared to be well known to all hands, and indeed the life of the party, 
for, like FalstafT, he was not only witty in himself, but the cause of wit m 
others. 

The gentleman to whom he had pointed me out immediately rose, made 
his bow, ordered a chair, and made room for me besid^himself, where the 
moment it was known that we were direct from home, such a volley of 
questions was fired off at me, that I did not know wbioi to answer mrst. 
At length, after Treenail had taken a glass or two of wine, the agent started 
him off to the admiral's pen in his own gig, and I was desired to stay where 
I was until he returned. 

The whole part^ seemed very happy, my boon ally was f\in itself, and I 
was much entertained with the mess he made when any of the foreigners 
at table addressed him in French or Spanish. I waS' particularly struck, 
with a small, thin, dark Spaniard, who told very feelingly how the ni^ht 
before, on returning home from a party to his own lodgings, on passing 
through the piazza, ne stumbled against something heavy that lay in his 
grass hammock, which usually hung there. He called for alight, when, to 
ms horror, he found the body of his old and faithful valet lying in it, dead 
and cold, with a knife sticking under his fif)h rib — no doubt intended for 
his master. The speaker was Bolivar. About midnight, Mr. Treenail 
returned, we shook hands with Mr. — — , and once more shoved off; and, 
guided by the lights shown on board the Torch, we were safe home again 
by three in the morning, when we immediately made sail, and nothing par- 
ticular happened until we arrived within a day's sail of New Providence. 
It seemed that about a week before, a lar^e American brig, bound from 
Havanna to Boston, had been captured in mis very channel oy one of our 
men-of-war schooners, and carried into Nassau ; out of which port, for 
their own security, the authorities had fitted a small schooner, carrying six 
guns and twenty-four men. She was commanded by a very gallant fellow 
-^ there is no disputing that — and he must needs emulate the conduct of 
the officer who aoA haade the capture — for in a fine clear night, when all 
the officers were below rummamng in their kits for the killingthings they 
should array themselves in on the morrow, so as to smite the Fair of New 
Providence to the heart at a blow — wMss — a shot flew over our mastp 
head. 

" A small schooner lying-to right ahead, sir," sung out the boatswain 
fiom the forecastle. 

Before we could beat to quarters, another sung between our masts. We 
kept steadily on our course, and as we approached our pigmy antagonist, 
he bore up. ^ Presently we were alongside of him. 

'* Heave-to," hailed the strange sau;. ** heave-to^ or PU ednk you." 

*< Tiie devil you will, you imdge,»» thought L ^ 



toM c&iirau&'s loo. -S7 

The oaptain took the trumpet — "Schooner, ahoy'* — no answer — 
** D — n your blood, sir, if you aon't let every thing go by the run this in- 
atent, PlI fire a broadside. Strike, sir, to his Britannic majesty's sloop Torch.** 

The poor fellow commanding the schooner had by tins time found out 
his mistake^ and immediately came on board, where, instead of being laud* 
ed for his gaUantify, 1 am sorry to say he was roundly rated for hia want of 
discernment in mistaking his majesty's cruiser for a Yankee m6rchantman» 
Kext forenoon ^e arrived at I^assau. 

In a week after we again sailed for Bermuda, having taken on board ten 
American skippers, and several other Yankees, as prisoners of war. 

For the ^irst three days after we had cleared the Passages, we had fine 
weather. Wind at eastrSO«lh-east ; but after that it came on to blow ffom 
the north-west, and so continued without intermission during the whole ei^ 
the passage to Bermuda. On the fourth morning after we left Nassau, we 
descried a sail in the south-east quaiter, and immediately made sail in chase. 
We over^iauled her about noon j she hove*to, after beina ^red at repeat- 
edly ; and, on boarding her, we found she was a Swede from Charleston, 
bound to Havre-de -Grace. All the letters we could find on board were 
very unceremoniously broken open, and nothing having transpired that 
could, iden^fy the car^o as enemy's property, we were bundling over the 
nde, when a Aautical-Tooking subject, who had attracted my attention from 
the first, pot in hid oar. 

" LieatejiaoUt'^said he, << will you allow me to put this barrel of New- 
York apples intd the boat as a piresent to Captain Deadeye, from Captain 
* * * ot the iTnited States navy ?" 

Mr. Treenail bowed, and said he would ; and we shoved off and got on 
board again, and now there was the devil to pay, from the perplesdty old 
Deadeye was thrown into, as to whether, here in the heat of the American 
war, he was bound to take this American captain prisoner or not I Was 
no party to the councils of my superiors, of course, but the foreign ship was 
finally allowed to continue her course. 

The next aay I had the forenoon watch ; the weather had lulled unexpect* 
edly, nor was there muoh sea, and the deck was all alive, to take advan- 
tage of the fine blink, when the man at the mast-head sung out — " Break- 
ers right ahead, sir." 

** Breakers I" said Mr. Splinter, in great astonishment* " Breakers 1 — 
why the man must be mad *— I say, Jenkins " 

'* Breakers close under the bows," sung out the boatswain from fop> 
ward." 

** The devil," quoth Splinter, and he ran along the gangway, and as- 
cended the forecastle, while I kept close to his heels. We looked out 
ahead, and there we certainly did see a splashing, and boiling, and white 
foarainff of the ocean, that unquestionably looked very like breakers. 
Gradually, this splashing and foaming appearance took a circular wlusking 
shape, as if the clear green sea, for a space of a hundred yards m diameter, 
had been stirred aboii^ by a gigantic invisible spurt^e, until everything hissed 
again ; and the curious pa# of it was, that the agitation of the water seem- 
ed to keep ahead of us, as if the breeze which impelled us had also floated 
it onwards. At length the whirling circle of white foam ascended higher 
and higher, and then gradually contracted itself into a spinning black tube, 
which wavered about, for all the world like a gigantic locMeech, held by the 
tail between the finger %nd thumb, while it wfis poking its vast snOut about 
in the douds in search df a spot to fasten on. 

'* Is the boat gun on the forecastle loaded ?" said Captain Deadeye* 
«< It is gir.'> 

'« Then luff a bit -^ that will do » fire.*' 

The gun was discharged, and down rushed the himek wavering pillar in 



98 TOM cftnrdLs's r^o. 

a watery malanehe, and in a minute after the daik heaving billowff rolled 
over the spot whereout it arose, as if no such thing had ever been. 

This said troubling of the waters was neither more nor less than a vfBttr* 
spout, which a^n is neither more nor less than a whirlwind at sea, which 
gradually whisks the water round and round, and up and up, as you see 
straws so raised, until it reaches a certain height, when it invanably hreaks. 
Before this I had thought that a waterspout was created by some next to 
supernatural exertion oi the power of the Deity, in order to suck up water 
into the clouds, that they, like the wino-skins m Spain, may be filled with 
rain. 

The mominv after the weather was dear and beautiful, although the 
wind blew halt a ^le. Nothing particular happened until about seren 
o'clock in the evenmg. I had been invited to aine with the gunroom offi^ 
cers this day, and ever3rthing was going on smooth and comfortable, when 
Mr. Splinter spoke. " I say, mas^r, <ion*t you smell gunpowder 7" 

'* Yes, I do," said the little master, "or something deocra like iV* 

To explain the particular comfort of our position, tt may be right to men^ 
tion that the ' magazine of a brig sloop is exactly undfer the gunroom. 
Three of the American skippers had been quartered on the gunrOom mess, 
and they were all at table. Snufl^ snuff, smelled one, and another sniffled, 
— <* Gunpowder, I guess, and in a state of ignition.** 

^ Will you not send for the gunner, sir ?'' said the third? 

Splinter did not like it, I saw, and this quailed me. -^ 

Tiie captain's bell ran^ '* What smell of brimstone is that, steward ?'* 

**I really can't tell," said the inan, trembling from head to foot ; *'Mr« 
Splinter has sent for the gunner, sir." 

"The devil!*' said Deadejre, as he hurried on deck. We all followed. 
A search was made. 

" Some matches have caught in the magazine," said one. 

" We shall be up and away like sky-rockets," said another. 

Several of the American masters ran out on the Jib-boom, coveting the 
temporary security of being so far removed from the seat of the expected 
explosion, and all was alarm and confusion, until it was ascertained that 
two of the boys, little skylarking vagabonds, had stolen some pistol car- 
tridges, and had been making lightning, as it is called, by holdinv a lighted 
candle between the fingers, and putting some loose powder into the palm of 
the hand, and then chucking it up into the flame. They got a sound flog- 
ging, on a very unpoetical part of their corpusses, and once more the ship 
subsided into her usual orderiy discipline. The northwester still continueo, 
with a clear blue sky, without a cloud overhead by day, and a bright cold 
moon by night It hlew so hard for the tiiree succeeding days, that we 
could not carry more than close reefed topsails to it, and a reefed foresail* 
Indeed, towards six bells in the forenoon watch, it came thundering down 
with such violence, and the sea increased so much, that we had to hand the 
fore-topsail. 

This was by no means an easy job. **Ea8e her a bit," said the first 
lieutenant, — " there — shake the vnnd out ftf^her sails for a moment, until 
the men get the canvass " whiri, a poor fellow pitched off the lee fore- 
yard-arm into the sea. *« Up with the helm — heave him the bight of a 
rope." We kept away, but all was confbsion, until an American midship- 
man, one of the prisoners on board, hove the bight of a rope at him. The 
man got it under his arms, and afler hauling lup along for a hundred yards 
at the least — and one may judge of the veloc^ with which he was drafi^ged 
through tiie water, by the fact that it took the united strain of ten poweHul 
men to get him in — he was brought safely on board, pale and blue, when 
we found that the running of the rope had crushed in bis bioad chest below 
his arms, as if it had been a girl's waist, cutting into the very muscles of it 



TOM CSUTttLB's I.0«» $9 

and of his back half an inch deep. He had to be bled before he could 
breathe, and it was an hour before tiie circulalion could be restored, by the 
jmnt exertions of the surgeon and gunroom steward, chafing him with spirits 
and camphor, after he had been stripped and stowed away between the 
blankets m his hammock. 

The same afternoon we fell in with a small prize to the squadron in the 
Chesapeake, a dismasted schooner, manned by a prize crew of a midship- 
man and six men. She had. a si^al of distress, an American ensign, with 
the union down, hoisted on the jury-mast, across which there was rigged 
a solitary In^sail. It was blowmg so hard that we had some difficulty in 
boarding her, when we found she was a Baltimore pilot-boat-built schooner, 
of about 70 tons burden, laden with flour, and bound for Bermuda. But 
three days before, in a sudden squall, they had carried away both masts 
sliort by the board, and the only spar which they had been able to rig, was 
a spare topmast which they had jammed into one of the pumps — fortu- 
nately she was as tight as a bottle — and stayed it the best way they could. 
The captain offered to take the little fellow who had charge of'^her, and his 
crew and cargo, on board, and then scuttle her ; but no — all he wanted 
was a cask of water and some biscuit ; and having had a glass of grog, he 
tmndled over the side again, and returned to his desolate command. How* 
erer, he afterwards brought his prize safe into Bermuda. 

The weather still contmued very rough, hut we saw nothing until the 
second evening after this. The forenoon had been even more boisterous than 
any of the |^receding, and we were all fagged enough with *' make sail," 
and << shorten sail," and " all hands," the whole day through ; and as the 
night fell, I found myself, for the fourth time, in the maintop. The men 
had jttst lain in from the^main-topsail yard, when we heard the watch called 
on deck, — " Starboard watch, ahoy," — which was a cheeiy sound to us 
ef the larboard, who were thus rri^ased from duty on deck and allowed to 
go below. 

The men ware scrambling down the weather shrouds, and I was prepar- 
ing to follow them, when I jammed my left foot in the grating of tne top^ 
and capsized on my nose. I had been up nearly the whole of the previous 
night, and on deck the whole of the day, and actively employed too, as 
during the greatest part of it it blew a gale. I stooped down in some pain, 
to see what had bolted me txy the grating, but I had no sooner extricated 
my foot, than, over- worked and over-fatimied as I was, 1 fell over in the 
soundest sleep that ever I have enjoyed Before or since, the back of my 
neck resting on a cotl«f rope, so that, my head hung down within it. 

The rain all this time was beating on me, and I was drenched to the 
ricin. I must have slept for four hours or so, when T was awakened by a 
rough thump on the side from the stumbling foot of the captain of the top. 
the word having been passed to shake a reef out of the topsails, the wind 
having rather suddenly gone down. It was done ; and now broad awake, 
I determined not to be caught napping again, so I descended, and swung 
rayi»lf in on deck out of the main rigging, just as Mr. Treenail was mu8» 
tering the erew at eight bells. When I landed on the quarter-deck, there 
he stood abaft the btnnacfevwith the light shining on his face, his glazed 
hat glancing, and the rain-drop sparkling at the brim of it He had noticed 
me the moment I descended. 

"Heyday, Master Cringle, you are surely out of your watch. Why, 
idiat are you doing here, eh ?" 

I stepped up to him, and told him the truth, that, being over-fatigued, 1 
had fallen asleep in the t9p. 

** Well, well, boy," said he, " never mind, go below, and turn in ; if yon 
doHt take your rest, you never will be a sailor." 

^ Bat wmtt do you see aloft?" glancing his eye upwifrds, and all the crew 



^ TOM CftmGI.B'8 L5«. 

on deck as I passed them looked anxioudj up alio among die rigging, a« 
if wondering what I saw there, for I had been so chilled in my snooze, that 
my neck, from resting in the cold on the coil of rope, had become stiffened 
and rigid to an intolerable degree ; and although, when I first came on 
deck, I had by a strong exertion brought my caput to its proper bearingfl, 
yet the moment I was dismissed by my superior officer, I for my own com- 
fort was glad to conform to the contraction of the muscle, whereby I once« 
more staved alon^ the deck, glowering up into the heavens, as if I had seen 
some wonderful sight there. 

" What do you see alofl ?'' repeated Mr. Treenail, while the crew, greatly- 
puzzled, continued to follow my eyes, as they thought, and to stare up into 
the rigjving. 

<* Why, sir, I have thereby got a stiff neck — that's ail, sir.'* 

" Qo and turn in at once, my good boy — make haste, now — tell our 
steward to give you a glass of hot grog, and mind your hand that you don*t 
get sick." 

I did as I was desired, swallowed the grog, and turned in; but I could 
not have been in bed above an hour, when tne drum beat to quarters, and 
I had once more to bundle out on the cold wet deck, where I found all 
excitement. At the time I speak of, we had been beaten hj the Americans 
in several actions of single ships, and our discipline had improved iat pnK 
portion as we came to learn by sad experience that the enemy was not to 
be undervalued. I found that there was a ship in sight, right ahead of ua 
— apparentiv carrying all sail. A group of officers were on the foreeastia 
with night-glasses, the whole crew being stationed in dark clusters round 
fhe guns at quarters. Several of the American skippers were forward 
among us, and they Were of opinion that the chase was a man-of-war. 
although our own people seemed to doubt this. One of the skippers insisted 
that she was the Hornet, from the unusual shortness OT her lower masts, and 
the immense squareness of her yards. But the puzzle was, if it were4he 
Hornet, why she did not shorten sail. Still this might be aocoonted for, by 
her either wishing to make out what we were before she engaged us, or 
she miG^ht be clearing for action. At this moment a whole cloud of stud* 
dingsails were blown from the yards as if the booms had been carrots ; and 
to prove that the chase was keepmg a bright look-out, she immediately 
kept away, and finally bore up dead before the wind, under the impression, 
no doubt, tiuit she would draw ahead of us, from her gear being entire^ 
before we could rig out our light sails again. 

And so she did for a time, out at len^h we got within gun-shot. The 
American masters were now ordered b^ow, the hatches were clapped on, 
and the word passed to see all clear. Our shot was by this time flying over 
and over her, and it was evident she was not a man-of>war. We peppered 
away — she could not even be a privateer ; we were close under her lee«- 
quarter, and yet she had never fired a shot ; and her large swaggering 
Yankee ensign was now run up to the peak, only to be hauled down the 
neirt moment Hurrah ! a large cotton ship, from Charleston to Bour- 
deaux, prize to H. M. S. Torch. 

She was taken possession of, and proved to Be the Natdies, of four hun- 
dred tons burden, fully loaded with cotton. 

By the time we got the crew on board, and the second lieutenant, with 
a prize crew of fifteen men, had taken charge, the weather began to lour 
again ; nevertheless we took the prize in tow, and continued on our voyage 
for the next three days, without any thing particular happening. It was 
the middle watch, and I was sound asleep, when I was startled by a violent 
jerking of my hammock, and a-cry " that the brig was among the break- 
ers." I ran on deck in my shirt, where I found all hands, and a sceno of 
confusion such as I never had witnessed before. The g^e had increased, 



MM OftUrOIJB'fl LOO. 41 

yet tae prise had not l>06ii<ca8t o^ and the conseauenoe wm, tbat by sonw 
mismanagement or careleasness, the swag oT the large ship had suddenly 
hove the brig in the wind, and taken the sails aback. We accordingly 
fetched stern way, and ran foul of the prize, and there we were, in a heavy 
«ea, with our stem srindin« against the cotton ship's his^ quarter. 

The mainboom, by the nrst rasp that took place after I came on deck, 
"jras broken short off, and nearly twelve feet of it hove ri^ht in over the 
taffrail ; the vessels then closed, and the next rub ground off* the ship^s mizen , 
channel as clean as if it had been , sawed away. Offioers shouting, men 
swearing, rigging cracking, llie Teasels cnishiilg and thumping together ; I 
thought we were gone, when the first lieutenant seized his trumpet-^** Si- 
lence, men, — hold your tongues, you cowards, and mind the word of coio- 
mand !*♦ 

The ef&ct was magical. — '* Brace round the foreyard ; round witli it-«- 
set the jib — that's it — fore-topmast staysail — haul — never mind if the 
gale takes it out of the bolt rope " — a thundering flap, and away it flew in 
truth down to leewiird, like a puff of white snume— "Never mind, men, 
the jib stands. Belay all that — down with the helm, now — don't you see 
she has stern way yet? Zounds! we shall be smashed to atoms if you 
don't mind your hands, you lubbers — main-topsail sheets let fly — there 
she pays ofl^ and has headway once more, that's it <» right your helm now 
— never mind his spanker-boom, the forestay will stand it — there — up 
with the helm, sir — we have cleared him — hurrah !*' — And a near thing 
it was too, but we soon had every thing snug ; and although the gale con- 
tinued without an}[ intermission for ten days, at length we ran in and an- 
chored with our prize in five Fathom Hole, oflTthe entrance to St George's 
Harbout. 

It was lucky for us that we got to anchor at the time we did, for that 
same afternoon, one of the most tremendous gales of wind from tiie west- 
ward came on that I ever saw. Fortunately it was steady and did not veer 
about, and having good gronnd-tackle down, we rode it out well enough. 
The effect was very uncommon ; the wind was howling over our mast* 
heads, and among the cedar bushes on the cliffs above, while on deck it 
was nearly calm, and there was very little swell, being a weather shore ; 
but half a mile out at sea all was white foam, and the tumbling waves 
seemed to meet ff^ north and south, leaving a space of smooth water under 
the lee of the isl^^, shaped like the tail of a comet, tapering away, and 
gradually roughcM^ig and becoming more stormy, until the roaring billows 
once more ownea iSlfogiance to the genius of the storm. 

There we rode, with three anchors ahead, in safety through the nisht ; 
and next day, availing ourselves of a temporary lull, we ran up, and anchor- 
ed off the Tanks. Three days after this, the American frigate President 
was brought in by the Endymion and the rest of the squadrOn. 

I went on board, in common with every officer in the fleet, and certainly 
I never saw a more superb vessel ; her scantling was that of a seventy- 
four, and she appeared to have been fitted with great care. I got a week's 
leave, at this time, and, as I had letters to several families, I contrived to 
spend my time pleasantly enough. 

Bermuda, as all the world knows, is a cluster of islands in the middle of 
the Atlantic. There are the Lord knows how many of them, but the beauty 
of the little straits and creeks which divide them, no man can describe who 
has not seen them. The town of Saint Qeorge's, for instance, looks as if 
the houses were cut out of chalk : and one evening the family where I was 
on a visit proceeded to lAie main island, Hamilton, to attend a ball there. 
We had to cross three ferries, ahhough the distance was not above nine 
miles, if so far. The *Mttdian women are trnqnestionably beautiful — so 
thought Thomas Moore, a tolerable judge, before me. By the by, touching 



4t vm cKuroxA^ jj$m* 

tins 'MacHan ball, it was a very gay affair •-- the women pleasant and 
beautiful ; but all the men, when they speak, or are spoken to, shot one eye 
and spit ; — a lucid and succinct description of a community. 

The second day of my sojourn was fine — the first fine day since our 
arrival — and with several youne, ladies of the family, I was piowling 
thronsh the cedar wood above St George's, when a dark good-looking man 
pasFed us ; he was diessed in tight worsted net pantaloons and Hessiaii 
boots, and wore a blue frock-coat and two large epaulets, with rich French 
bullion, and a round hat On pswsing he touched his hat with much grace, 
and in the evening I met lum in society. It was Commodore pecatttr. 
He was very much a Frenchman in manner, or, I should rather say, in lookj 
for although very well bred, he, for one in^pedient, by no means possessed 
a Frenchman's volubility ; still he was an exceedingly agreeable and very 
handsome man. 

The following day we spent in a pleasure cruise among the three hundred 
and sixty-five islands, many of them not above an acre in extent — fancy 
an isl&nd of an acre in extent ! — with a solitary house, a small garden, a 
red-skinned family, a piggery, and all around clear deep pellucid water. 
None of the islands, or islets, rise to any grfeat height, |i)ut they all shoot 
precipitously out of the water, as if the whole group had orignally been 
one huge platform of rock, with numberless grooves subsequently chisell^d 
out in it by art. 

We^ad to wind our way among these manifold small channjelf for two 
hours, before we reached the gentleman's house where we had been invited 
to dine ; at length, on. turning a comer, with both latteen sails drawing 
beautifally, we ran bump on a shoal ; there was no danger, and knowing 
that the 'Mudians were capital sailors, I sat still. Not so Captain K- — , 
a round plump little homOf — '' Shove her ofiE) my boys, shove her ofi!" She 
would not move, and thereupon he in a fever of gallantry jumped overboard 
up to the waist in full fiv* and one of the men following his example, we 
were soon afloat The ladies applauded, and the captain sat in his wet 
breeks for the rest of the voyage, in all the consciousness of being considered 
a hero. Ducks and onions are the grand staple of Bermuda, but there was 
a fearful dearth of both at the time I speak of; a knot of young West- India 
merchants, who, with heavy purses and large credits on England, had at 
this time domiciled themselves in St George's, to batten ^n the spoils of 
poor Jonathan, having, monopolized all the good things of the place. I 
Happened to be acquamted with one of them, and thereby had less reason 
to complain, but many a poor fellow, sent ashore on duty, had to put up 
with but Lenten fair at the taverns. At length, having refitted, we sailed, 
in company with the Rayo frigate, with a convoy of three transports, 
freighted with a regiment for New Orleans, and several merchantmen, 
bound for the West Indies. 

** The still vexed Bermoothes.'* — I arrived at them in a gale of wind, and 
T sailed from them in a gale of wind. What the climate may be in the 
summer I don't know ; but during the time I was there, it was one storm 
after another. 

We sailed in the evening with the moon at full, and the wind at west- 
north-west So soon as we got from under the lee of the land, the breeze 
struck us, and it came on to blow like thunder, so that we were all soon 
reduced to our storm staysails ; and there we were, transports, merchant- 
men, and men-of-war, rising on the mountainous billows one moment, and 
the next losinv sight of eveiything but the water and sk^ in the deep trough 
of the sea, while the seething foam was blown over Us in showers from fne 
curling manes of the roaring waves. But overhead, all this while, it was 
as clear as a lovely winter moon eoold make it, and the stars shone brightly 



TOM cringle's log. 4$ 

in the deep blue sky ; there wae not even a thin fleecy shred of cloud rack- 
in^across the moon^s disk. Oh, the glories of a northwester ! 

Bttt the devil seise such glory I Glory, indeed ! with a fleet of transports, 
and a regiment of soldiers on board ! Glory ! )vhy, I dare say five hundred 
rank and file^ at the fewest, were all cascading at one and the same mo- 
ment, — a thousand poor fellows turned outside in, like so miiny pairs of 
old stockings. Any glory in that ? But to proceed. 

Next morning the gale still continued, and when the day broke, there 
was 'the frigate standing across our bows, rolling and pitching, as she tore 
her way through the boiling sea, under a close- reefed main-topsail and 
reefed foresail, with topgallant^yards and royal masts, and everything that 
could be struck with safety in war time, down on deck. There she lay with 
her clear black bends, and bright white streak, and long tier of cannon on the 
maindeck, and the carronades on the quarter-deck and forecastle grinning 
through the ports in the black bulwarks, while the white hammocks, care« 
fully covered by the hammock-cloths, croivned the defences of the gallant 
fri^ale fore and aft, as- she delved through the green sur^e, — one minute 
rolling and rising on the curling white crest of a mountamous sea, amidst 
a hissing snow-storm of spray, with her bright copper glancing from stem 
to s^rn, and her scanty "white canvass swelhng aloft, and twenty feet of 
her keel forward occasionally hove into the air clean out of the water, as if 
she had been a sea-bird rushing to take wind, — and the next, sinkuig en- 
tirely out of sight, hull, masts, and rigging, behind an intervening sea, that 
rose in hoarse thunder between us, threatening^ to ovenvhelm both us and 
her. As for the transports, the largest of the three had lost her fore-top- 
mast, and had bore up under her foresail ; another was also scudding under 
a close-reefed fore-topsail ; but the third or head-quarter ship was still lying- 
to td windward, under her storm stay-sails. None ofthe merchant vessels 
were to be seen, having been compelled to bear up in the night, and to run 
before it under bare poles. 

At length, as the sun rose, we ^ot before the wind, and it soon moderated 
so far', that we could carry reefea topsails and foresails ; and away we all 
bowled, with a clear, deep, cold, blue sky, and a bright sun overhead, and 
a stormy leaden-coloured ocean, with whitish green-crested billows, below. 
The sea continued to ^ down, and the wind to slacken, until the after- 
noon, when the commodore made the signal for the Torch to send a boat's 
crew, the instant it could be done with safety, on board the dismasted ship, 
to assist in repairing damages, and in getting up a jury fore- topmast 

The damaged ship v^as at this time on our weather-quarter ; we ac- 
cordingly handed the fore-topsail, knd presently she was alongside. We 
hailed her, that we intended to send a boat on board, and desired her to 
heavc-to, as we did, and presently she rounded to under our lee. 

One ofthe quarter-boats was manned, with three ofthe oarpentei^s crew, 
and six good-'men over and above her complement ; but it was no easy 
matter to get on board of her, let me tell you, afler she had been lowerecf, 
carefully watching the rolls, with -four hands in. The moment she touched 
thp water, the tackles were cleverly unhooked, and the rest of us tumbled 
on board, shin leather growing scarce, when we shoved ofC With great 
difficulty, and not without wet jackets, we, the supernumeraries, sot on 
board, and the boat returned to the Torch. The evening when we landed 
in the lobster-box, as Jack loves to designate a transjX)rt, was too far ad- 
vanced for us to do anything towards rentting that night ; and the confo- 
sion, and uproar, and numberless abominations ofthe crowded craft, wers . 
irksome to a greater degree than 1 expected even, after having been ac^ 
customed to the strict and orderly discipline of a man-of-war. The follow- 
ing forenoon the Torch was ordered by signal to chase in the south-east 
quarter, and hauling out from the ffeet, she was soon out of sight 

44—3 



44 TOM CRIKOLb's LOOi 

** Thdre goes my house and home," said I, and a feeling of desolateness 
came over me, that I would have been ashamed at the time to have acknow- 
ledged. We stood on, and worked hard all day in repairing the damage 
Mstained during the gale. 

At length dinner was announced, and I was invited, as the officer in 
charge of the seamen, to go down. The party in the cabin consisted of an 
old gUzened major with a brown wig, ana a voice melodious as the sharp- 
ening of a saw — I fancied sometimes that the vibration created by it set 
the very glasses in the steward's pantry a-ringing — three captains and six 
subalterns, eveiy man of whom, as the devil would have it, played. on the 
flute, and drew bad sketches, and kept journals. Most of them were very 
white and blue in the eills when we sat down, and others of a dingy sort of 
whity-brown, while they ogled the viands in a most suspicious manner. 
Evidently most of them hn^ but small confidence in their numij^liea^ ; and 
one or two, as the ship gave a heavier roll than usual, looked wistfuHy to- 
wards the door, and half rose from their chairs, as if in act to bolt Blow- 
ever, hot brandy gro^ being the order of the day, we all, landsmen and 
sailors, got on astonishingly, and numberless long yams were spun of what 
'' what's-his-name of tliis, and so-and-so of t'other, did or did not do." 

About half-past five in the evening, the captain of the'(ninsport,or rather 
the agent, an old heotenant in the navy, and our host, rang his bell for the 
steward. 

'< Whereabouts are we in the fleet, steward ?" said the ancient 

** The stemmost ship of all, sir," said the man. 

"Where is the Commodore?" 

**' About three miles ahead, sir." 

** And the Torch, has she rejoined us ?" 

'* No, sir ; she has been out of sight these two hours ; when last seen she 
was in chase of something in the south-east quarter, and carrying all the 
sail she could stagger under." 

" Very well, very well." 

A song from Master Waistbelt, one of the young officers. Before he had 
eondudcS, the mate came down. By this time it was near sun-down. 

<< Shall we shake a reef out of the main and mizen-topsails, sir, and set 
the mainsail and spanker ? The wind has lulled, sir, and there is a strange 
sail in the north-west that seems to be dodging us — but she may be one of 
the merchantmen after all, sir." 

" Never mind, Mr. Leechline," said our gallant captain. <* Mr. ilan- 
dailer — a song if you please." 

Now the youn^ soldiers on board happened to be men of the world, and 
Bandailer, who did not sing, turned off the request with ^ good-humoured 
laugh, alleging his inability with much suavity ; but the old rough Turk of 
a tar-bucket chose to fire at this, and sang out-^*' Oh, if you don't choose 
to fling when you are asked, and to sport your damned fine airs— — " 

"Mr. Crowfoot " 

<* Captain," said the agent, piqued at having his title by courtesy with- 
held. 

*< By no means,*^ said Major Sawrasp, who had spoken — '< I believe I 
am spieaking to LieiUenant Crowfoot, agent for transport No. — , wherein it so 
haTOcns I am commanding officer — so " 

Old Crowfoot saw he was in the wrong box, and therefore hove about, 
and hacked out in good time — making the amende as smoothly as his grufi 
nature admitted, and trying to look pleased. 

Presently the same bothersome mate came down again — " The strange 
•aSl is creeping up on our quarter, sir." 

« Ay ?»» said Crowfoot, "how does she lay ?" 



TOM cbikole's loo. 45 

** ^le ifl hauled by the wind on the starboard tack, fir," ooatinaed the 
mate. 

We now went on deck, and found that our easpicious friend had short- 
ened sul, as if he had made us oat, and was afraid to approach, or was 
ijing by until night-fall. 

Sawrasp had before this, with the tact and ease of a soldier and a gentle- 
man, soldered his feud with Crowfoot, and, with the rest of the lobsters, 
was full of fight The sun at length set, and the night ploeed in, when the 
old major again addressed Crowfoot 

'* My dear fellow, can't you wait a bit, and let us have a rattle at that 
chap V* And old Crowfoot, who never bore a grudge long, seemed much 
kidined to fall in with the soldier's views ; and, in fine, although the weather 
was now moderate, he did not make sail. Presently the Commodore fired 
a ^n, and showed lights. It was the signal to close. ** Oh, time enough," 
said old Crowfoot — " what is the old man afraid of?'* Another ^un — 
and a fresh constellation on board the frigate. It was *<an enemy m the 
northwest quarter.*' 

" Hah, hah,** sung out the agent, *' is it so ? Maior, what say you to a 
brush — let her close, eh ? — should like to pepper her — wouldn't you -^ 
three hundred men, eh ?" 

By this time we were all on deck —the schooner came bowling along 
under a reefed mainsail and jib, now rising, and presently disappearing be- 
hind the stormy heavings of the roaring sea, the rising moon shining bristly 
on her canvass pinions, as if she had been an albatross skimming along the 
Buiface4[>f the foaming water, while her broad white streak glanced like a 
silver ribbon along her clear black side. She was a very large craft of her 
class, long and low in the water, and evidently very fast : and it was now 
clear, from our havin^ been unable as yet to sway up our fore-topmast, that 
she took us for a disiu>led merchantman, which mignt be cut ofi" from the 
convoy. 

As she approached, we could perceive by the bright moonlight, that she 
had six suns of a side, and two long ones on pivots, the one forward on the 
forecastle, and the other choke up to the mainmast 

Her deck was crowded with aark figures, pike and cutlass in hand ; we 
were by this time so near that we could see pistols in their belts, and a 
trumpet in the hand of a man who stood in the tbre-risgin& with his feet on 
the hammock netting, and his back against the shrouds. \Ve had cleared 
away our six eighteen-pound carronades, which composed our starboard 
|>road8ide,' and loaded them, each with a round shot, and a ba^ of two 
hundred musket-balls, while three hundred soldiers in their foraging jack- 
eta, and with their loaded muskets in their hands, were lying on the deck, 
eoncealed by the quarters, while the bluejackets were sprawung in groups 
lonnd theicarronades. 

I was lying down beside the gallant old major, who had a bugler close to 
him, while Crowfoot was standing on the gun nearest us ; but getting tired 
of this recumbent position, 1 crept afl, until I could see through a spare 
port 

" Why don't the rascals fire ?" quoth Sawrasp. 

*' Oh,, that would alarm the commodore. They intend to walk quietly 
on board of us ; but they will find themselves mistaken a little," whispered 
Crowfoot 

*' Mind, men, no firing till the bugle sounds," said the major. 

The word was passed alon^. 

The schooner was by this time ploughing through it within half pistol* 
shot, with the white water dashing away from her dows, and buzzing past 
her sides — her crew as thick as peas on her deck. Once or twice she 
hauled her wind a little, and then agaift kept away from us, as if irresolute 



46 ' TOM C&lKGi.fi's I.0O. 

what to do. At length, without hailing, and all silent as the ffnyo^ •he put 

her helm a-starboard, and ranged alongside. 

"Now, my boys, give it him," shouted Crowfoot— ** Fire!'* 

* Ready, men," shouted the major, — " Present, fire !" 

The bugles sounded, the cannon roared, the musketry rattled, and th f^ 
men cheered, and all was hiKra, and firo, and fury. The breeze was strong 
enough to carry all the smoke forward, and I saw the deck of the schooner, 
where the moment before all was still and motionless, and filled «with dark 
figures till there scarcely appeared standing room, at once converted into a 
shambles. The blasting niy tempest had laid low nearly the whole mass, 
like a maize plat before a hurricane ; and such a cry arose, as if 

" Men fought on earth, 
And fiends in upper air." 

Scarcely a man was on his legs, the whole crew seemed to have been levelled 
with the deck, many dead, no doubt, and most wounded, while we could see 
numbers endeavouring to creep towards the hatches, while the black blood, 
in horrible streams, gushed and gurgled through her scuppers down her 
Bides, and across the bright White streak that glanced in th^ moonlight. 

Some one on board of the privateer' now hailed, " We have surrendered ; 
cease firing, sir." But devil a bit — we continued blazing away -~ a lantern 
was run up to his main gafi^ and then lowered again. • 

"We have struck, sir," shouted another voice ; "don't murder us — don't ' 
fire, sir, for God's sak6." 

But fire we still did ; no sailor has the least compunction at even running 
down a privateer. Mercy to privateersmen is unknown. " Give them the 
stem," is the word, the curs being regarded by Jack at the best as high* 
waymen ; so, when he found we still peppered away, and saihng two feet 
for our one, the schooner at len^h, in their desperation, hauled her wind, 
and speedily got beyond range of our carronades, having all this time nevw 
fired a shot Shortly after this we ran under the Rayo'a stem — she was 
lying to. 

" Mr. Crowfoot, what have you been after ? I have a great mind to leport 
you, sir." 

''We could not help it, sir," sung out Crowfoot in a most dolorous 
tone, in answer to the captain of the frigate ; " we have been nearly 
taken, sir, by a privateer, sir — an immense vessel, sir, that sails like a 
witch, sir." , 

" Keep close in my wake then, sir," rejoined the captain, in a^ruff tone^ 
and immediately the Rayo bore up. 

Next morning we were all carrying as much sail as we could crowd. 
By this time we had gotten our jury fore-topmast up. and the Rayo, bavins 
kept astern in the night, was now under topsails, and top-gallant sails, wiu 
the wet canvass at the head of the sails, showing that reefs had been freshly 
shaken out •- roUing wedgelike on the swell, and rapidly shooting ahead, 
to resume her station. As she passed us, and let fall her foresail, she made 
the signal to make more sail, her object being to ^et through the Caicos 
Passage, into which we were now entering, betore mghtfall. It was eleven 
o'clock in the forenoon, a fine clear breezy day, fresh and pleasant, some- 
times cloudy overhead, but always breaking away again, with a bit of a 
sneezer, and a small shower. As the sun rose there were indications of 
saualls in the north-eastern quarter, and about noon one of them was 
wnitening to windward. So '* handsAby the topgallant clew-lines " was the 
word, and we were all standing by to shorten sail, when the Commodore 
came to the wind as sharp and suddenly as if he had anchored ; but on a 
second look. I saw his sheets were let fly, haulyards let go, and apparently 
all was confusion on board of her. X ran to the side and looked over. 



TOM CRIITGLE's LOO. 47 

IThe long heaving dark blue swell had changed into a light green hissing 
ripple. 

* Zounds, Captain Crowfoot, shoal water — why it breaks — we shall 
be ashore !" 

<*Down with the helm — brace round the yards," shouted Crowfoot; 
''that's it — steady— •lufl^ my man ;" and the danger was so imminent 
that even the studding-sail haulyaj^s were not let go, and the conse- 
quence was, that the booms snapped off like carrots, as we came to the 
wind. 

*' Lord help us, we shall never weather that foaming reef there — set the 
spanker — haul out — haul down the foretopmast-staysail — so, "mind your 
Ini^ my man.** 

The frigate now be»an to fire right and lefl, and the hissing of the shot 
overhead was a fearful augury of what was to take place ; so sudden was 
the accident, that thoy had not had time to draw the round shot The 
-other transports were equally fortunate with ourselves, in weathering the 
shoal, and presently we were all close hauled to windward of the reef, 
until we weathered the easternmost prong, when we bore up. But, poor 
Henfo ! she had struck on a coral reef, where the admiralty charts laid down 
fifteen fathoms water ; and although there was some talK at the time of an 
error in judgment, in not having the lead going in the chains, still do I 
believe there was no fault lying at the door of her gallant captain. By the 
time we had weathered the reef, the frigate had swun^ off from the pin- 
nacle of rock on which she bad been in a manner impaled, and was 
making all the sail 8l\e could, with a fothered sail under her bows, and 
chain-pumps clanging, and whole cataracts of water gushing from them, 
i;lear white jets spoutmg from all the scuppers, fore and afU She made the 
signal to close. The next, alas! was the British ensign, seized, union 
down, in the main-cigging, the sign of the uttermost distress. Still we all 
bowled along together, but her yards were not squared, nor her sails set 
with her customary precision, and her lurches became more and more 
Bickeni ng, until at length she rolled so heavily, that she dipped both yard- 
arms alternately in the water, and reeled to and fro like a drunken man. 

« What is that splash ?" 

It was the larboard-bow long eighteen- pound gun hove overboard, and 
watching the roll, the whole broadside, one after another, was cast into the 
sea. The clang of the phain-pumps increased, the water rushed in at one 
side of the main-deck, and out at the other side, in absolute cascades from 
the ports. At this moment the whole fleet of boats were alongside, keep- 
ing way with the ship, in the light breeze. Her main-topsail was hove 
aback, while the captain's voice resounded through the ship. 

** Now, men — all hands — bags, and hammocks — Btarboard watch, the 
starboard side — larboard Watch, the larboard side — no rushing now — she 
will swim this hour to come.'*' 

The bags, and hammocks, and officers' kits, were handed into the boats ; 
the men were told off over the side, as quietly by watches as if at muster, 
the officers last. At length the first lieutenant came down. By this time* 
she was settling perceptibly in the water ; but the old captain still stood 
on the gangway, nolding by the iron stancheon, where, taking off his hat, 
he remained uncovered for a moment with the tears standing in his eyes. 
He then replaced it, descended, and took his place in the ship's launch — 
the last man to leave the ship ; and tliere was little time to spare, for we 
had scarcely shoved off a few yards to clear the spars of the wreck, when 
she sended forward, heavily and sickly, oii the long swell. She never rose 
to the opposite heave of the sea again, but gradually sank by the head. 
The hull disappeared slowly and dignifiedly, we ensign fluttered and van- 
ished beneath the dark ocean — I could have fancied reluctantly — as if it 

3* 



48 TOM cringle's log. 

had been drawn down through a trap-door. The topsails next disappeared, 
the foretopsail sinking fastest ; and last of all, the white pennant at the main- 
topgallantmasthead, after flickering and struggling in the wind, flew up in 
the setting sun as if imbued with life, like a stream of white fire, or as if it 
had been the spirit leaving the body, and was then drawn dowti into the 
abyss, and the last vestige of the Rayo vanished for ever. The crew, as if 
moved by one common impulse, ^ave three cheers. , 

The captain now stood up in his boat — *^ Men, the Raw is no more, but 
it is my duty to tell you, that although you are now to be distributed among 
the transports, you are still amenable to martial law ; 1 am aware, men, 
this hint may not be necessary, still it is risht you should know it." 

When the old hooker clipped out of sight, tiiere was not a dry eye in the 
whole fleet. " There she goes, the dear old beauty,'* said one of her crew. 
" There goes the blessed old black b— h," quoth another. ." Ah, many a 
merry night have we had in the clever little crafl,*' (^uoth a third ; and there 
was realTy a tolerable shedding of tears and squirting of tobacco jui^e. 
But the blue ripple had scarcely blown over the glasslike surface of the 
sea where she had sunk, when the buoyancy of young hearts, with the 
prospect of a good furlough among the lobster boxee for a time, 8e6med to 
be uppermost among the men. The officers, I saw and knew, felt very 
differently. 

'*My eye !" sung out an old quarter-master in our boat, perched well for- 
ward with his back against the ring in the stem, and his arms crossed, after 
having been busily employed rummaging in his bag, ** my eye — what a 
pi^ — oh, what a pity ! " 

Come, there is some feeling, genuine at all events, thought L 

" Why," said Bill Chestree, the captain of the foretop, " what is can't be 
helped, old Fizgig ; old Rayohas gronedown, and " 

" Old Rayo be damned, Master Bill," said the man ; " but mav I be flog- 

fed, if I han't forgotten half a pound of negrohead baccy in Dick Catgut's 
ag." 

<' Launch ahoy!" hailed, a half drunken voice from one of the boats 
astern of us. ** Hillo," responded the coxswain. The poor skipper even 
pricked up his ears. " Have you got Dick Catgut's fiddle among ye ?" 
This said Dick Catgut was the corpora) of marines, and the prime instigator 
of all the fun among the men. "No, no," said several voices, " no fiddle 
here." The hail passed round among the other boats, "No fiddle !" "I 
would rather lose three days' grog than have his fiddle mislaid," quoth the 
man who pulled the bow oar. ^ 

" Why don't you ask Dick himself?" said our coxswain. 

"Aye — true enough — Dick, Dick Catgut!" but no' one answered. 
Alas ! poor Dick was nowhere to be found; he had been mislaid as well 
as his fiddle. He had broken into the spirit room, as it turned out, and 
having got drunk, did not come to time when the frigate sunk. 

Our ship, immediately afler the frigate's crew had been bestowed, and 
the boats get in, hoisted the Commodore's light, and the following morning 
we fell in with the Torch, off the east end of Jamaica, which, aner seeing 
the transports safe into Kingston, and taking out me and my people, bore 
up through the Gulf^ and resumed her cruising ground on the edge of tiie 
Gulf stream, between 25<> and SO^ north latitude. 



TOM CAIKGLfi's LOO. 49 



CHAPTER III. 

THE QUENCHING OF THS TORCH. 

" Then rose from sea to aky (he wild farewell." 

Don Juan. 

The evening was closing in dark and rainy, with every appearance of a 
gale from the westward, and the weather had become so thicK and boister- 
ous, that the lieutenant of the watch had ordered the look-out at the mast- 
head down on deck. The man, on his way down, had gone into the main- 
top to bring away some things he had placed there in going aloft, and was 
in the act of leavmg it, when he sung out, — " A sail on the weather-bow." 

«• What does she look like V" 

"Can't rightly say, sir; she is in the middle of the thick weather to 
windward." 

" Stay whore you are a little. — Jenkins, jump forward, and see what you 
can make of her from the fore-yard." 

Whilst the topman Was obeying his instructions, the look-out again 
hailed — *• She is a ship, sir, close-hauled on the same tack, — the weather 
clears, and I can see her now." 

The wind, ever since noon, had been blowing in heavy squalls, with ap- 

E ailing lulls between them. One of these gusts had been so violent as to 
ury in the sea the lee-guns in the waist, alUiough the brig had nothing set 
but her close- reefed mam- topsail, and reefed foresail. It was now spending 
its fury, and she was beginning to roll heavily, when, with a suddenness 
almost incredible to one unacquainted with these latitudes, the veil of mist 
that had hung to windward the whble day was rent and drawn aside, and 
the red and level rays of the setting sun flashed at once, through a long arch 
of glowing clouds, on the black hull and tall spars of his Britannic majes- 
ty's slqop. Torch. And, true enough, we were not the only spectators of 
this gloomy splendour ; for, right in the wake of the moonlike sun, now 
half sunk in the sea, at the distance of a mile or more, lay a long warlike- 
looking craft, apparently a frigate or heavy corvette, rolling heavily and 
silently in the trough of the'^sea, with her masts, yards, and the scanty sail 
she had set, in strong relief against the glorious horizon. 

Jenkins now hailed from the foreyard — " The strange sail is bearing up, 
sir." 

As he spoke, a flash was seen, followed, after what seemed a long inter- 
val, by the deadened report of the gun, as if it had been an echo, and the 
sharp, half-ringing half-hissing sound of the shot. It fell short, but close 
to us, and was evidently thrown from a heavy cannon, from the length of 
Uie range. 

Mr. Splinter, the. first lieutenant, jumped from the gun he stood on — 
" (Quartermaster, keep her away a bit " — and dived into the cabin to make 
his report 

Captain Deadeye was a staid, stiff^rumped, wall-eyed, old first-lieuten- 
antish-looking veteran, witjh his coat of a regular Rodney cut, broad skirts, 
long waist, and standmg up collar, over which dangled either a queue, or a 
maninspike with a tuft of oakum at the end of it — it would have puzzled 
Old Nick to say which. His lower spars were cased in ti^ht unmention- 
ables of what had once been white kerseymere, and long boots, the coal- 
skuttle tops of which served as skuppere to carry of the drainings from Mb 



^ TOM CRINGLS'S LOG. 

coatrflaps in bad weatker ; he was, in fact, the *< last of the sea monsters,'* 
but, like all his tribe, as brave as steel, and, when put to it, as alert as 
a cat 

He no sooner heard Splinter's report, than he sprung up the ladder, brush- 
ing the tumbler of swizzle he had just brewed clean out of the fiddle into 
the lap of Mr. Saveall, the purser, who had dined with him, and nearly ez- 




** She is close to, sir j you can see her plainly without it,»» said Mr. Tree- 
nail, the second lieutenant, from the weather nettings, where he was recon- 
Boitring. > 

After a long look through his starboard blinker, (his other skylight had 
been shut up ever since Aboukir,) Deadeye gave orders to " clear away the 
weather-bow sun ; and as it was now getting too dark for flags to be seen 
distinctly, he desired that three lanterns might be got ready for hoisting 
vertically in the main-rigging. 
"All ready forward there?" 
« All ready, sir." 

*' Then hoist away the li^ts, and throw a shot across her forefoot — 
Fire !" Bang went our carronade. but our friend to windward paid no re- 
gard to the private signal ; he haa shaken a reef out of his topsails, and 
was coming down fast upon us. 

It was clear that old Blowhard had at first taken him for one of our own 
cruisers, and meant to Hgnalize him, " all regular and ship-shape," to use 
his own expression. Most of us, however, thought it would have been wiser 
to have made sail, and widened our distance a Tittle, in place of bothering 
with old-fashioned mancBuvres, which might end in our catching a tartar ; 
but the skipper had been all his life in line-of-battle ships, or heavy frigates ; 
and it was a tough job, under any circumstances, to persuade nim of the 
propriety of <* up-stick-and-away," as we soon felt to our cost. 

The enemy, for such' he evidently was, now all at once yawed, and in- 
dulged us with the sight of his teeth ; and there he was, mteen ports of a 
side on his maindeck, with the due quantum of carronades on his quarter- 
deck and forecastle ; whilst his short lower masts, white canvass, and the 
tremendous hoist in his topsails, showed him to be a heavy American fri- 
gate ; and it was equally certain that he had cleverly hooked us under his 
lee, within comfortable range of his lon^ twenty-fours. To convince the 
most unbelieving, three jets of flame, amidst wreaths of white smoke, now 
glanced from his maindeck ; but in this instance, the 8Q|pd of cannon was 
Allowed by a sharp crackle and a shower of splinters frdm the fore-yard. 

It was clear we nad got an ugly customer — poor Jenkins now called to 
Treenail, who was standing forward near the gun which had been fired — 
" Och, sir, and it's badly wounded we are here." 

The officer was a Patlander, as well as the seaman. ** Which of you, 
my boy ?" — the growing seriousness of the aflair in no way checking his 
propensity to fun, — ** wmch of you, — you, or the yard ?" 

" Both of us, your honour ; but the yard badliest." 

"The devil ! — Come down, then, or get into the top, and I will have 
you looked after presently." 

The poor fellow crawled off the yard into the foretop, as he was ordered, 
where ne was found after the brush, badly wounded by a splinter in the 
breast 

Jonathan, no doubt " calculated," as well he might, that this taste of his 
quality woidd be ouite sufficient for a little eighteen-gun sloop close under 
hiB lee ; but the nght was not to be so easily taken out of Deadeye, 
although even to his optic it was now high time to be ofil 



TOM crutgle's loo. 51 

" All hands make sail, Mr. Splinter ; that chap is too heavy for as : — 
Mr. Kelson," to the carpenter, *'jump up and see what the foreyard will 
cairy. Keep her away, my man,'^ to the seaman at the helm. — ^' Crack 
on, Mr. Splinter, shake all the reefs out, — set the fore-topsail, and loose top- 
gallant-sails ; — stand by to sheet home ; and see all clear to rig the booms 
out, if the breeze lulls.'* *■ 

In less than a minute we were bowling along before it ; but the wind was 
breezing up again, and no one could say how long the wounded foreyard 
would carry the weight and drag of the sails. To mend the matter, Jona- 
than was coming up hand over hand with the freshening breeze, under a 
press of canvass ; it was clear that escape was next to impossible. • 

"Clear away the larboard guns!" I absolutely jumped off the deck, 
with astonishment — who could have spoken it ? It appeared such down- 
right madness to show fight under the very muzzles of the guns of an ene- 
my, half of whose broadside was sufficient to sink us. It was the captain^ 
however, and there was nothing for it but to obey. 

In an instant, the creaking and screaming of the carronade slides, the 
rattling of the carriage of the long twelve- pounder amidships, the thump- 
ing and punching of handspikes, and the dancing and jumping of Jack 
himself, were heard through the whistling of the breeze, as the ^ns were 
bein^ shotted and run out. In a few seconds ail was still agam, but the 
rushing sound of the vessel going through the water, and of the rising gale 
among the rigging. 

The men stood clustered at their quarters, their cutlasses buckled round 
their waists, all without jackets and waistcoats, and many with nothing but 
their trousers on. 

'' Now, men, mind your aim ; our only chance is to wing him. I will 
3raw the ship, and as your guns come to bear, slap it ric;ht into his bows. — 
Starboard your helm, my man, and bring her to the wmd." As she came 
round, blaze went our carronades and long-gun in succession, with good- 
will and good aim, and down came his foretopsail on the cap, with all the 
superincumbent spars and gear ; the head of the topmast had been shot 
away. The men instinctively cheered. '* That will do ; now knock ofi) 
my boys, and let us run for it Keep her a^ay again ; make ail sail." 

Jonathan was for an instant paralyzed by our impudence ; but just as we 
were getting before the wind, he yawed, and let drive his whole broadside ; 
and fearfully did it transmogrify us. Half an hour before we were as gay 
a little sloop as ever floated, ivith a cr^w of 120 as fine fellows as ever 
manned a British man-of-war. The iron shower sped — ten of the hun- 
dred and twenty never saw the sun rise again ; seventeen more were 
wounded, three mortally ; we had eight shot between wind and water, our 
maintop-mast sh<||||^away as clean as a carrot, and our hull and rigging 
otherwise regular^ cut to pieces. Another broadside succeeded ; but by 
this time we had bore up — thanks to the loss of our after sail, we could do 
nothing else ; and what was better luck still, whilst the loss of our main- 
topmast paid the bri^ off on the one hand, the loss of head-sail in the fri- 
gate brought her as quicklv to the wind on the other ; thus most of her shot 
fell astern of us ; and, before she could bear up again, in chase, the squall 
struck her, and carried her maintopmast overboard. 

This gave us a start, crippled and bedevilled though we were ; and as 
the night fell, we contrived to lose sight of our large friend. With breath- 
less anxiety did we carry on through that night, expecting every lurph to 
send our remaining topmast by the board ; but the weather moderated, and 
next morning the sua shone on our blood-stained decks, at, anchor off the 
entrance of St George's harbour. 

I was the mate of the watch, and, as day dawned, I had amused myself 
with other younkers over the side, examining the shot-holes and other in- 



53 TOM csinole's log. 

juries iUBtained from the fire of the frigate, and contrastiiig the clean, sharp, 
well-defined apertures, made br)r 24*pound shot from the long guns, with the 
bruised and splintered ones from the 32-pound carronades ; but the men 
had begun to wash down the decks, and the first gush of clotted blood and 
water from the scuppers fairly turned me sick, I turned away, when Mr. 
Kennedy, our gunner, tt godd steady old Scotchman, with wnom I was a 
bit of a favourite, came up to me — ** Mr. Cringle, the captain has sent for 
you ; poor Mr. Johnstone is fast going, he wants to see you." 

I knew my young messmate had been wounded, for I had seen him caiw 
ried below after the frigate's second broadside ; but the excitement of a 
boy, who had seldom smelled powder fired in anger before, had kept me od 
deck the whole ni^t, and it never once occurred to me to ask foi; hmi, until 
the old gunner spoke. 

I hastened down to our small confined berth, where I saw a sight thfit 
quickly brought me to myself. Poor Johnstone was indeed going; a 
grape-shot had struck him, and torn his belly open. There he lay in his 
bloody hammock on the deck, pidie and motionless as if he had already de> 
p«rted, except a slight twitching at the comers of his mouth, and a convuW 
sive contraction and distension of his nostrils. His brown ringlets still 
clustered over his marble forehead, but they were drenched in the cold 
sweat of death. The surgeon could do nothing for him, and had left him : 
but our old captain — bless him for it — I little expected, from his usuu 
crusty bearing, to find him so employed — had knelt by his side, and, whilst 
he read from the prayer-book one of those beautiful petitions in our church 
service to Almignty God, for mercy to the passing soul of one so young, 
and so early cut ofif the tears trickled down the old man's cheeks, and filled 
the furrows worn in them by the washing up of many a salt spray. On 
the other side of his narrow bed, fomenting the rigid muscles of ins neck 
and chest, sate Misthress Conolly, one of three women on board -^ a rough 
enough creature. Heaven knows ! in common weather ; but her stifled sobs 
showed that the mournful sight had stirred up all the woman within her. 
She had opened Uie bosom of the poor boy's shirt, and untying the riband 
that fastened a small ^Id crucifix round his neck, she placed it in his cold 
hand. The young midshipman was of a respectable family in Limerick, 
her native place, and a Catholic — another strand of the cord that bound 
her to him. When the captain finished reading, he bent over the departing 
youth and kissed his cheek. " Your youn^ messmate just now desired to- 
see you, Mr. Cringle, but it is too late, he is msensible and dying." Whilst 
he spoke, a strong shiver passed through the boy's frame, his face became 
slightly convulsed, and all was over ! 

The captain rose, and Conolly, with a delicacy of feeling which many 
might not have looked for in her situation, spread one of our clean mese 
table-cloths over the body. ** And is it really gone you are, my poor dear 
boy !" forgetting all difference of rank in the fulness of her heart *' Who 
will tell this to your mother, and nobody here to wake you but ould 
Kate Conolly, and no time will they be giving me, nor whisky — Ochon ! 
ochon !" 

But enough and to spare of this piping work. The boatswain's whistle 
now called me to the gangway, to supenntend the handing up,firom a shore 
boat alon^ide, a supply of tne grand staples of the island — ducks and 
onions. The three Mudians in her were characteristic samples of the inhab- 
itants. Their faces and skins, where exposed, were not tanned, but abso- 
lutely burned into a fiiy-red colour by the sun. They guessed and drawl- 
ed like any buckskin from Virginia, superadding to their accomplishments 
their insular peculiarity of always shutting one eye when they spoke to 
you. They are all Yankees at bottom ; and if they could get their 365 



TOM CRIirOLB^S LOO. 53 

Ulanda — so they call the lar^ stones on which they live -.- under weigh, 
they would not he long in towing them into the Chesapeake. 

The word had been passed to get six of the larboard-guns and all the 
shot over to the other side, to give the brig a list of a streu: or two a-star- 
board, so that the stage on which the carpenter and his crew were at work 
over the nde, stopping the shot-holes about the water line, might swing 
clear of the wash of the sea. 1 had jumped from the nettings, where I was 
perched, to assist in unbolting; one of the carronade slides, when I slipped 
and capsised against a peg sticking out of one of the scuppers. I took it 
for something else, and damned the ring-bolt incontinently. Caboose, the 
cook, was passing with his mate, a Jamaica negro of the name of John, 
Crow, at tne time. *< Don't damn the /emains of your fellow-mortals, 
Master Cringle ; that is my leg." The cook of a man-of-war is no small 
hew ; he is his majesty's warrant officer, a much big^r wig than a poor 
little mid, with whom it is condescension on his part to jest. 

It seems to be a sort of a rale, that no old sailor who nas not lost a limb, 
or an eye at least, shall be eUsible to the office ; but as the kind of maiming 
is so far circumscribed that all cooks must have two arms, a laughable pro- 
portion of them have but one leg. Besides the honour, the perquisites 
are good ; accordingly, all old quarter-masters, captains of tops, &c. look 
forward to the cookdom, as the cardinals look to the popedom ; and really 
there is some analogy between them, for neither are preferred from any 
especial fitness for the office. A cardinal is made pope because he is old, 
innrm, and imAiecile, — our friend Caboose was made cook because he had 
been Lord Nelson's coxswain, was a drunken rascal, and had a wooden 
le^ ; for, as to his gastronomical aualifications, he knew no more of the 
science than just sumcient to watcn the copper where the salt junk and 
potatoes were boiling. Having been a little in the wind over-night, he had 
quartered himself, in the superabundance of his heroism, at a gun, where he 
had no business to be, and in running it out, he^had jammed his toe in a scup- 
per-hole, so fast that there was no aitricating him ; and notwithstanding 
iiis piteous entreaty ** to be eased out handsomely, as the leg was made 
out of a planiL of the Victory, and the ring at the end out of one of her bolts," 
the captain of the gun finding, after a stout pull, that the man was like 
to come " home in nis hand, toilhout the leg,'* was forced '' to break him 
short otr," as he phrased it, to get him out of the way, and let the carriage 
traverse. In the morning, when he sobered, he had quite forgotten where 
the leg was, and how he broke it : he therefore got Kelson to splice the 
stump with the but-end of a mop ; but in the hurry it bad been left three 
inches too long, so he had to jerk himself up to the top of his peg at every 
step. The Doctor, gFad to breathe the fresh air after the horrible work he 
had gone through, was leaning over the side speaking to Kelson. When 
I fell, he turned round and drew cookee's fire on himself. << Doctor, you 
have not prescribed for me yet" 

'< No, Caboose, I have not ; what is wrong ?" 

^ Wrong, sir 7 why I have lost my leg, and the captain's clerk says T 
am not in the return I — Look here, sir, had Doctor Kelson not coopered 
me, where should I have been ? — Why, Doctor, had I been looked after, 
amputation might have been unnecessary ; difiah might have done, whereas 
I have had to be spliced.*^ 

He was here cat short by the voice of his mate, who had gone forward to 
•lay a pig for the gunroom mess. ** Oh, Lad, oh ! — Massa Caboose ! — • 
Dem dam Yankee ! _ De Purser killed, massa ! — Dem shoot him troo de 
head ! ->- Oh, Lad !" 

Captain Deadeye had come on deck. *' Tou John Grow, what is wrong 
with you ?" 

•« Why, de Purser killed, Captaviy dat all.»* 



54 ' TOM cringle's r.00. 

« Purser kflled ? — Doctor, is Saveall-hurt ? » 

Treenail could stand it no longer. " No, sir, no ; it is one of the gunrooffi 
pigs that we shipped at Halifax three cruises ago ; 1 am sure I don't know 
now he survived one, but the seaman took a fancy to him, and nicknamed 
him Purser. You know, sir, they make pets of any thing, and every thing, 
at a pinch !" 

Here John Crow drew the carcass from the ho^-pen, and sure enough a 
shot had cut the poor Purser's head nearly off Blackee looked at him with 
a most whimsical expression ; they say no one can fathom a negro's affec- 
tion for a pig. " Poor Purser ! de people call him Purser, sir, because* him 
knowing chap ; him cabbage all de grub, slush, and stuff in him own cor- 
ner, and give only de small bit, and delbad piece, to de dder pig j so Cap- 
tain " 

Splinter saw the poor fellow was like to get into a scrape. f*That will 
do, John Crow — forward with you now, and lend a hand to catthe ^chor. 
— All hands up anchor !" The boatswain's hoarse voice repeated tfc# com- 
mand, and he in turn was re-echoed by his mates ; the capstan was man- 
ned, and the crew stamped round to a point of war most villanously per- 
formed by a bad drummer and a worse fifer, in as high glee as if those who 
were killed had been snug and well in their •hammocks on the berth-deck, 
in place of at the bottom of the sea, with each a shot at his feet. We 
weighed, and began to work up, tack and tack, towards fhfe island of Ire- 
land, where the arsenal is, among a perfect labyrinth of shoals, throilgh 
which the 'Mudian pilot cunned the ship with great skill, taWing his stand, 
to our no small wonderment, not at the gangway or poop, as usual, but on 
the bowsprit end, so that he might see the rocks under foot, and shun them 
accordin^lyj for they are so steep and numerous, (they look like large fish 
in the clear water,) and the channel is so intricate, that 3'ou have to go 
quite close to them. At noon we arrived at the anchorage, and hauled our 
moorings on board. 

We had refitted, and been four dafs at sea, on o«r voyage to Jamaica^ 
when the gunroom officers gave our mess a blow-out. 

The increased motion and rushing of the vessel through the water, the 
groaning of t\ie masts, the howling of the rising gale, and the frequent tramp- 
linsj of the watch on deck, were prophetic of wet jackets to some of us j 
still, midshipmanlike, we were as happy as a good dinner and some wine 
could make us, until the old gunner shoved his weatherbeaten phiz and 
bald pate in at the door. "Beg pardon, Mr. Splinter, but if yt)u will spare 
Mr. Cringle on the forecastle ^r an hour until the moon rises."" 

(" Spare, quotha, is his mgijesty's officer a joint stool?") 

"\Wiy, Mr. Kennedy, why ? here, man, take a glass of grog.*' 

** I thank you, sir. It is coming on a roughish nig^ht, sir ; the running ships 
should be crossing us hereabouts ; indeedmore than once I thought there 
was a strange aail close aboard of us, the scud is flyin^so low, and in such 
white flakes ; and none of us have an eye like Mr. Cringle, unless it be 
John Crow, and he is all but frozen.'* 

"Well, Tom, I suppose yon will go" — •^ngUcCy from a first lieutenant 
to a mid — *' Brush instanter." 

Having changed my uniform, for shag- trousers, pea-jacket, and sonth- 
west cap, I went forward, and took my station, in no pleasant humout, on 
the stow6d foretopmast-staysail, with my arm round tne stay. I had been 
half an hour there, the weather was getting worse, the rain was beating in 
my face, and the spray from the stem was flashing over me, as it roared 
through the waste of sparkling and hissing waters; I turned itty back to 
the weather for a moment, to press my hand on my strained eyes. When 
I opened them again, I saw the gunner's ^aunt hi^h-featured visage thrust 
anxiously forward ; his profile looked as if rubbed over with phosphorus. 



TOM GEuraiiC's iioa. S6 

and his whole person as if we had been pla^ng at snap-dngon. ^ What 
fasB come ovier you, Mr. Kennedy ? — who is burning tne blue light bow ?*' 

*' A wiser man than I am must tell you that ; look forward, JV&. Cringle 
— look there ; what do your books say toihat ?" 

I looked forth, and saw, at the extreme eoA of the jib-boom, what I had 
read of, certainly, but never expected to see, a pale, greenish, glow-worm 
ocdoured flame, of the size ana shape of the frosted glass shade over the 
swinging lamp in the gunroom. It drew out and flattened as Ike vessel 
pitched and rose again, and as she sheered about, it wavered round the 
pouit that seemed to attract, it, like a soapsud bubble blown from a tobacco 

Eipe before it is shaken into the air ; at the core it was comparatively bright, 
ut gradually faded into halOi It shed a bal^ul and ominous light on the 
aurroandiBg t>bject8 ; the group of sailors on the forecastle looked like 
spectres, and they shrunk together, and whispered when it began to rofl 
slowly along the spar towards where the boatswain was sitting at my feet 
At this instant something slid down the staiy, and a coU clammy hand passed 
round mv neck. I was within an ace of losing my hold, and tumbling 
orerboard. << Heaven have mercy on me, what's that ?" 

^ It's that skylarking son of a gun, Jem Sparkle's monkey, sir. You, 
Jem, yon'U never rest till that beast is made shark bait of." 

But Jacko vanished up the stay again, chuckling and grinning in the 
ghostly radiance, as if he had been the ^ Spirit of me Lamp. The light 
was rail there, but a cloud of mist, hke a burst of vapour irom a steam 
hofler, came 4lown upon the gale, and flew past, when it disappeared. I 
firilowed the white mass as it sailed down the wind ; it did not, as it ap^ 
peaied to me, vanish in the darkness, bat seemed to remain in sight to le&» 
ward, as if checked by a sudden flaw ; yet none of our «ails were takea 
aback. A thought flashed on me. I peered still more intensely into the 
ni^t. I was now certain. ** A sail, oroad on the lee bow." 

The ship was in a boss in a moment The captain answered from the 
qnavtep-deck -<- " Thank you, Mr. Cringle. How shall we steer 7" 

** Keep her away a couple of points, sir, steady." 

*< Steady," sung the man at the helm ; and the slow melancholy cadence, 
although a familiar sound to me, now moaned through the rushing of the 
wind, and smote upon ray heart as if it had been the waihnp of a spirit 

I turaed to the boatswain, who was now standing beside me — Is that 
ycMi or Dmy steering, Mr. Nipper? if you had not been here bodily at my 
elbow, I could have sworn {hat was your voice,** 

When the gunner made the same remark It startled the poor fellow ; he 
tried to take it as a joke, but could not '* There may be a laosd hammock 
with a shot in it, for some of us ere morning." 

At this moment, to my dismay, the object we were chasitis shortened, 
gradually fell abeam of us, and finally disappeared. *^he FlyinglXitchmaii.'* 

" I can*t see her at all now." 

'*She will be a fore-and-aft-rigged vessel that has tack«d, sir," said the 
gunner. And sure enough, after a few seconds, I saw the white object 
lengthen, and draw out a^ain abaf^onr beam. 

" The chase jkaa tacked, sir," I sung out ; ** put the helm down, or she 
will go4o windward of us." 

we tacked also, and time it was we did so, for the rising moon now 
showed us a large schooner under a crowd -of saiU We ^E^d down on 
her, when finding her manoeuvre dete<^ted, she brailed up her flat sails, and 
bore up before the wind. This was our best point of saving, and we 
cracked on, the captain rubbing his hands — *' Wb my turn to be the M; un 
ittDS time." Although blowing a strong north-wester, it was now dear 
moonlight, and we hammered away from our bow guns, but whenever a 
shot told among the rigging, the injoty was repaiF^ as if by magic. It 



f6 TOM CBII»«Ul'0 LOO. 

wtf 6?id«iit we hftd repeate^y hailed her, fitwi the i^meiMg wMlS 
■Ireeks thmg her ooanter and acroee her stem, occasioned by the epiinMr- 
ing of the timber, bat it teemed to prodnce do eifect. 

At length we drew well up on her quarter. She oontinoed all black hull 
and white sail, not a aoal to he seen on deck, ezoept a dark ebjecC, which 
we took for the man at the helm. " What schooner's that ?** No answer. 
** Heave-to, or PU sink yoo.'* Still all silent *< Sergeant Armstrong, do 
you think you eoold pick off that chap at the wheel ?** The raaiine jmn^ied 
on the forecastle, and levelled his piece, when a muskeUshot from the 
schooner crashed throa|^ his skull, and he fell dead. The old skippei'e 
blood was up. ** Foreoistle, there ! Mr. Nipper, clap a canister of grape 
tnrer the round shot into the boat-gun, and give it to him.'' 

- Ay, ay. sir!" gleefully rejoined the boatswsin, forgetting the angary 

and every mine elM in the excitement of the moment* In a twinkling the 

.square roresau — topsail— topgallant — royal— and studdmgpail hiaot* 

yaitis were let go by the run on board of the schooner, as if they bad beeo 

shot away, and he put his helm hard aport as if to round tot. 

** Rake him, sir, or give him the stem. He has not surrendered. I know 
their game. Give him your broadside, sir, or he is off to windwaid of yoo 

like a shot No, no ! we have him now ; heave to, Mr. Splinter, heave 

to t" We did so, and that so suddenly, that the studdingsail booms snap- 
ped like |Mpe-shanks, short off by the irons. Notwithstanding we had 
shot two hundred yards to leeward before we could lav our makitopeail te 
the mast I ran to windward. The schooner's yards and rigging were 
now black with men, dastered like bees swarmine, her square-sails were 
being doee foiled, her forfr«nd-aft sails set, and away she was, dose- 
hauled and dead to windwaid of us. 

"So much for nndervaluing our Ameriean fiienda^" grumbled Mr. 
Splinter. 

We made all sail in chase, blazing awav to litUe purpoae; we had no 
chance on a bowHne, and when our amigo had satisfied himself of his sup^ 
riority by one or two short tacks, he deUberatdy hauled down his flymg 
ub and gaff-topsail, took a reef in his mainsail, triced np the bunt of his 
tnresail, and fired lus long thirty-two at us. The shot came in at the third 
aftermost port on the starooard side, and dismounted the cammade, smash- 
ing the slide, and wounding three men. The second shot missed, and as 
it was madness to remain to be peppered, probably winged, whilst every 
one of ours fell short, we reluctantly kept away on our course, having the 
gratification of hearing a dear web-blown bugle on board the schooner 
plav up « Yankee Doodle." 

As the brig fell off, our long gun was run out to have a parting cradL at 
her, when the third and last shot from the schooner struck the sill of the 
midship-port, and made the white splinters fly from the sdid oak like bright 
silver sparks in the moonlight A sharp pierdng cry rose into the air— 
my soul identified that death shriek with the voice that I had heard, and I 
saw the man who was standing with the lanyard of the lock in his hand 
drop heavily across the breech, and diseharse the eon in his fall. Thei»- 
npcm a blood-red ^are shot up into the cold blue »y, as if a volcano had 
burst forth from TOneath the mighty deep, followed by a roar, and a shat- 
tering crash, and a mingling of unearthly cries and groans, and a concua* 
■ion of the air, and of the water, as if our whole broadside had been fiied 
at onoe. Then a solitary splash here, and a dip there, and shcMt sharp 
ydls, and low choking bubbling moans, as the hissing fragments of the 
noble vessel we had seen fell into the sea, and the last of her galUnt crew 
vaniBhed for ever beneath that pale broad moon. Wt wen alone, and once 
more all was dark, and wild, and stormy. Fearfully had that ball sped, 
filed by a dead man's hand. But what is it that clings black and doubled 



aeross that fatal oaBnoOi dripping and hoaT^, aad chokuig the «mppen 
with dottiag eoro, and swaying to and fro with the motion of the tobmI, 
fike a bloody fleece? 

«< Who is it that was hit at the gun there ?*' 
^Mr. J/iipper,th€bogt8wain,nr. The Uul ahot luu aU him in two." 
After this most melancholy incident we continued on our voyage to Jsp 
uaicay nothing particular occurring until we anchored at Port Royal^ where 
we had a reciuar overhaul of the old bark, and after this was completed^ 
we were or£red down to the leeward part of the island to affind protection 
to theooasting trade. One fine monung, about a fortnight after we had 
left Port Roval, the Torch was lyin^ at anchor in Bluefiwds Bay. It was 
between ei^ and nine ; the land-wind had died away, and the ses^breeae 
had not set in — there was not a breath stirring. The pennant from the 
masthead fell slussshly down, and clung among the rigging like a dead 
anajiey whilst the £3ds of the St Qeorge's ensign that hung from the miaenp 
peak, were as motionless as if they had been carved in marble. 

The anchorage was one unbroken mirror, except where its edasslike 
•miaoe was shivered into sparkling ripples by the gambols of a skipiad(y 
or the flashing stoop of his enemy the pelican ; and the reflection of the 
vessel was so clear and steady, that at the distance of a cable's length yos 
eould not distinguish the water-line, nor tell where the substance ended 
and shadow began, until the casual dashing of a bucket overboard for a 
few nioments broke up the nhantom ship ; but the wavering fragments 
soon reunited,>and she again noated double, like the swan of the poet The 
heat was so intense, that the iron stancheons of the awning could not be 
grasped with the hsiid, and where the dedu were not screened by it, the 
pitch boiled out from the seams. The swell rolled in from the otiog in 
long shining undulati<»is, like a sea of quicknlver, whilst everv no^ and 
then a flying fish would spark out from the unruffled bosom of the heaving 
water, and shoot away like a silver arrow, until it dropped with a flash into 
the sea again. There was not a doud in the heavens, out a quivering blue 
haze hung over the land, through which the white sugar-works and over- 
seers* houses on the distant estates appeared to twinkle like objects seen 
through a thin smoke, whilst each of the tall stems of the coooa-nut trees 
on the beach, when looked at steadfiutly, seemed to be turning roond with 
a small spiral motion, like so many endless screws. There was a dreamy 
indistinctness about the outlines of the hills, even in the imwediatft vicinity, 
which increased as they receded, until the Blue Monatains in the horiion 
melted into sky. The <»ew were listlessly spinning oakum, and meadine 
sails, under the shade of the awning; the only exceptions 4o the generu 
languor were John Grow the black, and Jacko the monkey. The former 
, (w£> was an improvisaiore of a roufh stamp) sat out on the bowsprit, 
through choice, beyond the shade of & canvass, without hat or shirt, like 
a bronze bust, busv with his task, whatever that might beu singing at the 
top of his pipe, ana between Whiles confabulating wmi his hairjr ally, as if 
he had been a meismate. The monkey was hanging by the tail from the 
dolphin-striker, admiring what John Crow called '<his own dam ogly foce 
m the water." 

** Tail like yours would be good ting for a sailor, Jacko, it would leave 
his two hands free aloft ^ more use, more homament, too, Pm sure, den de 
piece of greasy junk dat hangs from de captain's tafrril.«Now I shall 
*uig to you, how dat Conomantee rascal, my fader, was sell me on de Gold 
Coast 

" Two red nightcap, one loog knife, 
All bhn get lor ^uacko. 
For gun nest day him eell htm wife — 
Too tink dat good lODg, laeko V 



SB TOM crinolb's lo«. 

** Chocko, chocko,*' chattered the monkey, as if in answer. 

'< Ah, you tink so— sensible hominal ! — V/ hat is dat ! shark 7 — J«cko^ 
eome up, sir: don't you see dat big shoveUnosed fis looking at you 7 Poll 
your hand out of the water — Garamighty !*' 

The negro threw himself on the nimmoning of the bowB]}rit to take hol<f 
of the poor apej who, mistaking nis kind intention, and ignorant of his 
danger, shrunk from him, lost his hold, and fell into the sea. The shariiL 
instantly sank to have a'ruU) then dashed at bis prey, raising his snout over 
him, and shooting his head and shoulders three or four feet outof the water, 
with poor Jacko shrieking in his jaws, whilst his small bones crackled and 
enincned under the monster's triple row of teeth. 

Whilst this small tragedy was acting — and painful enough it was to the 
kind-hearted negro — I was looking out towards the eastern horizon, 
watching the first, dark blue ripple of the sea-breeze, when a rushing noise 
passed dver my head. I lookea up and saw a gallinaso, the large carrion- 
crow of the tropics, sailing, contrary to the habits of its kind, seaward oTer 
the brig. I followed it with my eye, until it vanished hi the distance, when 
my attention was attracted by a dark speck far out in the offing, with a little 
tiny white sail. With my glass I made it out to be a ship^s boat, but I 
•aw no one on board, and tSe sail was idly flapping about the mast. 

On making my report, I was desired to pull towards it in the gig ; and 
as we approached, one of the crew said he thought he saw some one peer- 
ing ov it the bow. We dresr nearer, and I saw nim distinctly. 

<' V/hy don't you haul the sheet afl, and come down to us, sir ?" 

He neither mov'ed nor answered, but as the boat rose and fell on the short 
sea re sed by the first of the breeze, the face kept mopping and mowing at 
ma ov ir the gunwale. 

*< I will soon teach you manners, my fine fellow ! give way, men ".— and 
I fired my musket, when the crow that I had seen, rose from the boat into 
the air, but immediately alighted again, to our astonishment, vulture-like, 
with out-stretched winss, upon the head. 

Under the shadow ofthis horrible plume, the face seemed on the instant to 
alter like the hideous changes in a dream. It appeared to become of a death- 
fike paleness, and anon streaked with blood. Another stroke of the oar — 
the chin had fallen down, and the tongue was han^ng out Another pail 
—the eyes were gone, and from their sockets, brains and blood were fer- 
menting and flowing down the cheeks. It was the face of a putrefyinv 
corpse. In this floating coffin we found the bodv of another sailor, doubled 
across one of the thwarts, with a long Spanish knife sticking between his 
ribs, as if he had died in some mortiu struggle, or, what was equally prob- 
able, had put an end to himself in his frenzy ; whilst along the bottom 
of the boat, arranged with some show of care, and covered by a piece of 
canvass stretched across an oar above it, lay the remains of a beautiful boy, 
about fourteen years of age, apparently but a few hours dead. Some bis- 
cuit, a roll of jerked beef, and an earthen water-jar, lay beside him, show- 
ing that hunger at least could have had no share in his destruction, — but 
the pipkin weu dryj and the smatt water-^ask in the bow was sta/oed^ and empty. 

We had no sooner cast our grappling over the bow, and begun to tow 
the boat to the slnp, than the abominable bird that we had scared settled 
down into it asain, notwithstanding our proximity, and be^n to peck at 
the face of the dead boy. At this moment we heard a gibbering noise, and 
saw something like a bundle of old rags roll out from beneadi the stem- 
sheets, and whatever it was, apparently make a fruitless attempt to drive 
the gallisano from its prey. Heaven and earth, what an object met our 
eyes ! It was a full-grown man, but so wasted, that one of the boys lifled 
him by his belt with one hand. His knees were drawn up to his chin, his 
hands were like the talons of a bird, while the falling in of his chocolate- 



TOM 0EIir6LE*S LOO. 59 

ix^loored and withered features gave aa unearthly relief to his forehead, 
over which the homy and transparent skin was braced so tightly that it 
seemed ready to crack. Bat in the midst of this desolation, his deep-set 
ooal-black eyes sparkled like two diamonds with the fever of his sufibrings ; 
tbere was a fearfiu fascination in their flashing brightness, contrasted with 
the death-like aspect of the face, andti^ity of the frame. When sensible 
of our presence he tried to speak, bat couldonly utter a low moaning sound. 
At length — "Jigua, agtM" — we had not a drop of water in the boat 
*' £1 muchaco esta mor%en4o de $ed — j^grwo;" 

"We got on board, and the surgeon gave the poor fellow some weak tepid 
grog. It acted hke magic He gradaall3r unccnled himself, his voice, from 
being weak and husky, became comparatively strong and clear. *' El kijo 
— .^gtia para mi PedrUlo -* A*o le hace pari nd-^Okla noehe pasado, la noehe 
pasado /'' He was told to compose himself, and that his boy would be taken 
oare of. Dexa me verlo enkmeetf oh Diost dexa me veiio,^* — and he crawled, 
arovelling on his chest, like a crushed worm, across the deck, until he got 
me head over tiie port-sill, and looked down into the boat He there behrid 
the pale fiice of his dead son ; it was the last object he ever saw -^^^^yde 
mi /" he groaned heavily, and dropped his face against the ship's side — 
He was dead. . 

After spending several months in the service already alluded to, we were 
ordered on a cnuse off the coast of Terra Firma. 

Morillo was at this time besieging Carthagena by land, while a Spanish 
squadron, under Admiral Eniilie, blockaded the place by sea ; and it 
pleased the officer who commanded the in-shore division to conceive, while 
the old Torch was quietly beating up along the coast, that we had an in- 
tention of fordne the blockade. 

The night betore bad been gusty and tempestuous — all hands had been 
called three times, so that at last, thinking there was no use in going below. 
I lay down on the stern sheets of the boat over the stem — an awkward 
berth certainly, but a spare tarpauling had that morning been stretched over 
the aflerpart of the boat to dry, and I therefore esconcS myself beneath it 
Just before daylight, however, the brig, by a sudden shift of wind, was 
taken aback, and fetching stem- way, a sea stmck her. How I escaped I 
never could tell, but I was pitched right in on deck, over the poop, and 
much bruised, where I foand a sad scene of confusion, with the captain 
and several of the officers in their shirts, and the men tambling up from 
below as fast as they could — while, among other incidents, one of our pas- 
sengers, who occupied a small cabin under the poop, having gone to sleep 
with the stem port open, the sea had sarged in through it with such violence 
as to wash him out on deck in his shirt, where he lay sprawling among the 
feet of the men. However, we soon ^t all rt^ht, and in five minutes the 
sloop was once more tearing through it on a wind ; but the boat where I 
had been sleeping was smashed into staves, all that remained of her being 
the stem and sterapost dangling from the tackles at the ends of the davits. 

At this'time it was ^y dawn, and we were virorking up in-shore, with- 
out dreaming of breakmg the blockade, when it fell stark calm. Presently 
the Spanish squadron, anchored under Punto Canoa, perceived us, when a 
eorvette, two schooners, a cutter, and eight gan-boata, got under wei^, 
tiie latter of which soon swept close to us, ranging themselves on our bows 
and quarters ; and although we showed our colours, and made the private 
international signal, they continued firing at us for about an hour, without, 
however, doin^ any dama^, as they had chosen a wary distance. At 
length some ofthe shot fallmg near us, the skipper cleared for action, and 
with his own hand fired a 32-pounder at the nearest gun-boat, the crew of 
which bobbed as if they had seen the shot coming. This opened the eyes 
«f the Dons, who thereupon ceased firing; and as a light breeze had now 

4* 



i 



iO TOM OBIKQIiK's LOG. 

set down, they immediately made sail in p«rauit of a schooner that ismd 
watched the opportunity of their being employed with us to run in under 
the walls, and was at this moment chased ay a ship and a gun-boat, who 
had got within gun-shot and kept up a brisk fire on her. So soon as the 
others came up, all hands opened on the gallant little hooker who was 
forcing the blockade, and peppered away ; and there she was, like a hare, 
with a whole pack of harriers after her, sailing and sweeping in uB(|er 
their fire towards the doomed city/r. As the wind was very light, the blodL- 
ading squadron now manned their boats, and some of them were coming 
fast up, when a rattle of musketry from the small craft sent them to the 
riffht about, and presently the chase was safely at anchor under the battery 
of Santa Catalina. 

But the fun was to come — for by this time some of the vessels that held 
her in chase had got becalmed under the batteries, which immediately 
opened on them cheerily ; and down came a topgallant mast here, and a 
topsail-yard there, and a studdiogsail t'other place -~ and such a squealins 
and creaking of blocks and rattling of the gear-— while yards braced 
hither and thither, and toppin^lifts let go, and sheets let fly, showed that 
the Dons were in a sad quandary ; and no wonder, for we could see the 
shot from the long 32-pounders on the walls, falling very thick all around 
several of thenir However, at 4 p. m. we had worked up alongside of the 
Commodore, when the'old skipper gave our friend such a rating, that I 
don't think he ever wiH ibraet it. 

On the da)r following oar being fired at, I was sent, being a §ood Span- 
iard, along with the second lieutenant — poor Treenail — to Monllo's head- 
quarters. We got an order to the officer commanding the nearest post on 
snore, to provide us with horses ; but before reaching it, we had to walk, 
under a roasting sun, about two miles through miry roads, until we arrived 
at the barrier, where we found a detachment of artillery, but the command- 
ing officer could only give us one poor broken- winded horse, and a jackass, 
on which we were to proceed to bead-quarters on the morrow ; and here, 
nnder a thatched hut of the most primitive construction, consisting simplv 
of cross sticks and palm branches, we had to spend the night, the poor fel- 
lows being as kind as their own misery would let them. 

Next rooming we proceeded, accompanied by a hussar, through dreadful 
roads, where the poor creatures we bestrode sunk to the belly at every 
flounder, until about 4 p. m., when we met two negroes, and found, to our 
great distress, that the soldier who was oar guide and escort, had led us 
out of our way, and that we were in very truth then travelling towards the 
town. We tnerefore hove about and returned to Palanquillo, a villa^ 
that we had passed through that very mcffning, leaving the hussar and his 
horse sticking fast in a slough. We arrived about nightfall, and as the 
village was almost entirely deserted, we were driven to take up our quar- 
ters in an old house, that seemed formerly to have been used as a distilleij. 
Here we found a Spanish lieutenant and several soldiers quartered, all of 
them suffering more or less from dysentery ; and after passing a very com- 
fortless night on bard benches, we rose at gray dawn, with our hands and 
faces blistered from musquito bites, and our hair full of wood ticks, or 
garrapatos. We again started on our journey to head-quarters, and finally 
arrived at TorrecUki at two o'clock in the afternoon. Both the Commander- 
in-Chief Morillo, and Admiral En rile, had that morning proceeded to the 
works at Boca Ckica, so we only found £1 Senor Montalvo, the Captain- 
General of the Province, a little kiln-dried diminutive Spaniard. Morillo 
used to call him " uno numeco CreoUo," but withal he was a gentlemanlike 
man in his manners. 

He received us very civilly ; we delivered our despatches ; and the same 
'^ening we made our bow, and having obtained fresh hones, set out ob 



ton cjiikglb's log. 61 

oar retuni, and arrived at the villag^of Santa Rosa at nine at night, where 
we slept ; and next morning continuing on oar journey, we got once mo*^ 
safely on board of the old brig at twelve o'clock at noon, in a miserable 
plight, not having had our clothes off for three days. As for me 1 was used 
to roughing it, and in my humble equipment any disarrangement was not 
particulaiiy discernible, but in poor Treenail, one of the nattiest fellows in 
thti service, it was a very different matter. He had issued forth on the 
enterprise, cased in tight blue pantaloons that fitted him like his skin, 
over which were drawn lonv well-polished Hessian boots, each with a for- 
midable tassel at top, and his coat was buttoned close up to the chin, with a 
a blazing swab on the right shoulder, while a laced cocked hat and 
driess sword completed his equipment. — But, alas ! when we were ac- 
counted for on board of the old Torch, there was a fearful dilapidation of 
his external man. First of all, his inexpressibles were absolutely torn into 
shreds by the briers and prickly bushes through which we had been travel- 
ling, and fluttered from his waistband like the stripes we see depending 
from an ancient Roman or Qrecian coat of armour ; his coat had only 
one skirt, and the bullion of the epaulet was reduced to a strand or two, 
while the tag that held the brim or flaps of the cocked hat up, had given 
way; so that, although he looked fierce enough, stem on, still,' when you 
had a stem view, the after part hung down his back like the tail of the hat 
of one of Landseer's flying dustmen. 

After this, we experienced, with little intermission, most dreadful weather 
for two weeks, until at length we were nearly torn in pieces, and the cap- 
tain was about abandoning his ground, and returning to Port Royal, when 
it came on to blow with redoubled violence. We struggled a^inst it for 
twelve hours, but were finally obliged to heave-to, the sea all the while 
running tremendously high. 

About noon on the day I speak of, the weather had begun to look a little 
better, but the sea had if anything increased. I had just come on deck, 
when Mr. Splinter sung out — '*Look out for that sea, quarter-master ! — 
Mind your starboard helm ! — Ease her, man — ease her V* 

On it came, rolling a»high as the foreyard, and tumbled in over the bows, 
green, clear, and unbroken. It filled the deep waist of the Torch in 
an instant, and as I rose half smothered in the midst of a jumble of men, 
pigs, hencoops, and spare spars, I had nearly lost an eye by a float- 
mg boarding-pike that was lanced at me by the jaugle of the water. 
As for the boats on the booms, they had all cone to sea separately, and 
were bobbing at us in a squadron to leeward, the launch acting as com- 
modore, with a crew of a d<KKen sheep, whose bleating as she rose on the 
crest of a wave came back upon us, faintly blending with the hoarse 
roaring of the storm, and seeming to cry, ** No more mutton for you, my 
boys !" 

At length the lee ports were forced out — the pumps promptly ri^^ged 
and manned — backets slung and at work down the hatchways ; and al- 
though we had narrowly escaped being swamped, and it continued to blow 
hard, with a heavy sea, the men, confident in the qualities of the ship, 
worked with glee, shaking their feathers, and quizadng each other. But 
anon a sudden and appalling change came over the sea and sky, that made 
the stoutest among us quail and draw his breath thick. The firmament 
darkened — the horizon seemed to contract — the sea became t)lack as 
ink — the wind fell to a de»d calm — the teeming clouds descended and 
filled the murky arch of heaven with their whirling masses, until they 
appeared to touch our mast-heads, but there was neither lightning nor 
rain, not one glancing flash, not one refreshing drop— the windows of 



$2 TOM CBIAGLB's LO0. 

the sky bad been sealed np by Him who had said to the storm, ** Peaces 
be stiU." 

Daring this deathlike pause, infinitely more awful than the heaviest gale, 
eveiT sound on board, the voices of the men, even the creakine of the bulk- 
heads, was heard with startling distinctness ; and the water-logeed brig, 
having no wind to steady her, faboured so heavily in the trough ot the sea, 
that we expected her masts to go overboard every moment. 

*< Do you see and hear that, sir ?'' said Lieutenant Treenail to the cap« 
tain. 

We all looked eagerly forth in the direction indicated. There was s 
white line in fearful contrast with the clouds and the rest of the ocean, 
gleaming on the extreme verge of the horizon — it grew broader— a low 
increasing growl was heard — a thick blinding mist came driving up astern 
of us, whose small drops pierced into the skin like sharp haiL 

"Is it rain?" 

*< No, no— salt salt." 

And now the fierce Spirit of the Hurricane himself, the sea Auraei, in 
storm and in darkness, came thundering on with stunning violence, tearing 
offthe snowy scalps of Uie tortured billows, and with tremendous and sheer 
force, crushmg down beneath his chariotpwheels their mountainous and 
howling ridges iiito one level plain of foaming water. Our chainplates, 
strong fastenings, and clenchea bolts, drew like pliant wires, shrouds and 
stays were torn away like the summer gossamer, and our masts and spars, 
crackFing before his fury like dry reeds m autumn, were blown clean out of 
the ship, over her bows, into the sea. 

Had we shown a shred of the strongest sail in the vessel, it would have 
been blown out of the bolt-rope in an instant ; we had, therefore, to get her 
before the wind, by crossing a spar on the stump of the foremast, with four 
men at. the wheel, one watc^ attiie pumps, and toe other clearing the wreck. 
But our spirits were soon dashed, when the old carpenter, one of the coolest 
and bravest men in the ship, rose through the forehatch^ale as a ^ost, 
Mrith his white hair streaming straight out in the wind. He did not speak 
to any of us, but dambered aft, towards the capstan, to which the captain 
had lashed himself. 

*' The water is rushing in forward like a mill-stream, sir ; we have either 
started a butt, or the wreck of the foremast has gone throu^ her bows, for 
she is fast settling down by the head.** 

" Get the boatswain to /other a sail then, man, and try it over the leak ; 
but don't alarm the people, Mr. Kelson," 

The brig was, inoeeo rapidly losing her buoyancy, and when the next 
heavy sea rose ahead of us, she gave a drunken sickening lurch, and 
pitched right into it, groaning and trembling in every plank, Uke a guilty 
and condemned thing in the prospect of impending punishment 

" Stand by to heave the guns overboard." 

Too late, too late — Oh, God, that cry ! — I was stunned and drowning, 
a chaos of wreck was beneath me, and around me and above me, and blue 
agonized gasping faces, and struggling arms, and colourless dutching 
hands, and despairing yells for help, wnere help was impossible, when I 
felt a sharp bite on the neck, and breathed again. My Nev^oundland dog, 
Sneezer, had snatched at me, and dragged me out of the eddy of the sink* 
ing vessel. 

For life, for dear life, nearly suffocated amidst the hissing spny, we 
reached .the cutter, the dog and his helpless master. 

For three miserable days, I had been exposed, half naked and bare- 
headed, in an open boat, without water or food or shade. Ttie third ^erce 



TOM crutglb's Loe. 63 

dottdless West Indian noon was long passed, and once more the dry burn- 
ing sun sank in the west, like a red-hot shield of iron. In my horrible 
extremity, I imprecated the wrath of Heaven on my defenceless head, and 
shaking my clenched hands against the brazen sky, I called aloud on the 
Almighty, '<Oh, let me never see him rise again !" 1 glared on the noble 
dog, as he lay dying at the bottom of the boat ; madness seized me, I tore 
his throat witn my teeth, not for food, but that I might drink his hot blood 
— it flowed, and, vampire-like, I would have gorged myself; but as he 
turned his dull, gray, glazing eye on me, the pulses of my heart stopped, 
and I fell senseless. 

When my recollection returned, I was stretched on some fresh plantain 
leaves, in a low smoky hut, with my faithful do^ lying beside me, whining 
and licking my hands and face. On the rude joists that bound the rafters 
of the rooftogether, rested a light canoe with its paddles, and over against 
me, on the wall, hung some Indian fishing implements, and a long-barrelled 
Spanish gun. Underneath lay a corpse, wrapped in a boat-sail, on which 
was clumsily written, with charcoal, — " The body of John Deadeye, Esq., 
late commander of his Britannic majesty^s sloop, Torch." 

There was a fire on the floor, at which Lieutenant Splinter, in his shirt 
and trousers, drenched, unshorn, and death-like, was roasting a joint of 
meat, whilst a dwarfish Indian, stark naked, sat opposite to him, squatting 
on his hams, more like a large bull-frog than a man, and fanning the flame 
with a palm leaf. In the dark comer of the hut half a dozen miserable 
sheep shrunk h^^dled together. Through the open door I saw the stars in 
the deep blue heaven, and the cold beams of the newly risen moon were 
dancing in a lon^ flickering wake of silver light on the ever-heaving bosom 
of the ocean, whilst the melancholy murmur of the surf breaking on the 
shore, came booming on the gentle ni^ht-wind. I was instantly persuaded 
that I had been nounshed during my delirium ; for the fierceness of my su& 
ferings was assuaged, and I was comparatively strong. —1 anxiously in- 
quired of the lieutenant the fate of our shipmates. 

*< All gone down in the old Torch ; and had it not been for the launch 
and our four-footed friends there, I should not have been here to have told 
it ; but raw mutton with wool on is not a mess to thrive on, Tom. All 
that the sharks have left of the captain and five seamen came ashore last 
night I have buried the poor fellows on the beach where they lay as well 
as I could, with an oar-blade for a shovel, and the bronze ornament there 
[pointing to the Indian] for an assistant." 

Here he looked towards the body ; and the honest fellow's yoice shook 
as he continued. 

** But seeing you were alive, I thought if you did recover, it would be 
gratifying to lK>th of us, afler having weathered it so long with lum through 
gale and sunshine, to lay the kind-hearted old man's head on its everlasting 
pillow as decently as our forlorn condition permitted." 

As the lieutenant spoke. Sneezer seemed to think his watch was upland 
drew off towards the fire. Clung and famished, the poor brate could no 
longer resist the temptation, but, making a desperate snatch at the joint, 
bolted through the door with it, hotly pursued by the BuU-frOg. 

"Drop the leg of mutton, Sneezer,*' roared the lieutenant, **drop the 
mutton — drop it, sir, drop it, drop it." And away raced his majesty's offi- 
cer in pursuit of the canine pirate. 

After a Uttle he and the Indian returned, the former with the joint in his 
band ; and presently the dog stole into the hut after them, and patiently 
lay down in a corner, until the lieutenant good-humonredly threw the bone 
to him after our comfortless meal had been finished. 



64 vm eaammA'n ua«. 

I waa io wMk tfatt my ihipiiMle oomidendlv nftuned fff»n pwnwag 
liit flodetjr on me; and w«^ thenfim, all bctooK awaelvea to seat lor 4i» 



CHAPTER IV. 

sonras on thb coaTA pirms. 

" Here liee a sheer hulk, poor Tom BowHne." 

I WAS awakened by the low growting and abort baik of the dbg. The ni^bC 
waa far apent ; the tiny sparks of the foe-flies that were glancing in the door- 
way began to grow pale ; the chirping of the crickets and lizards, and the 
more orthe tree-toao, waxed fainter, and the wild cry of the tiger-cat waa 
no longer heard. The temd, or land-wind^ which is nsoally stiongeet to- 
wards momin|^ moaned loocUy on the hill-aide^ and came mshing paM widi 

* A triflioff error of the preee in the foregoing ehefiter, when it irel wppeared, broagbl 
forth the following chaiaeterietie letter to the Editor of Blacl(Vood*e Magiwine t — 

" To CoMMODoaa Chbistopbu ITobth. 
" Dbab Old OsziTLaiiAM, 

<* TouB chief devil hae got me into a terrible men by a miepHnt in lent Cbaiaer— 
confound my cramp fist — regarding which old Splinter (eretof the Torch,) has ever 
aince qiiizzed me verj nearly ap to gunpowder marlc. 

" To the matter — the said imp makes me say, in page 54, atanding on the btntwprilf 
that *■ the spray from the atem was flashing over me, as fc roared through the waste of 
sparliling and hissing waters.' Now, I don't dispute the roaring of the steme — in sea- 
son. But, — — — me, if you or aoy other man sliall malce Tom Cringle's stern roar out 
of season on compulsion. I wrote stsx, the cut-water of the ship, the coulter as it 
were — the head of her, not the tail, as the devil would have it And again, when the 
privateer hauls his wind suddenly to let the Torch shoot past him, and tiiereby gain 
ue weather-gage, when old Splinter should sins out, as it was written — but, confound 
the fist once more — ' Give her the atem ' — that Is, run her down and sink her, the 
atem being the strongest part, as the atem is the weakest, he, Beelzebub, judgin/?, I 
presume, of the re^^tive strength of the two ends from his own comparative anatomy, 
makes him say, * Give her the efem,' as if he were going to let drive at her with that 
and. * Foo, nonsense — it don't eignify.' But it doea signify, old man. 

" To touch you more near — yon yourself have been known to get fou and pugisa- 
elous on great occasions — the visit of royalty, for instance — it is on record. A moun- 
tain foreigner from Ross-shfare engages you, for come unknown insult, in single combat, 
and, leagued with John Barieycom, (lee us imagine an impoesibHity,)-^^re you by a 
peg on the gnomon — the wound is in the front — your aruna is broken, hut your hon» 
our is whole. Would it be so, were the Gael to allege, that * her nainfell had coupit 
you by a nig kick on her preach .'* By all the gods, he of the laconic garment, tha 
* thousand liill man,' would have been careering on a cloud after his * freen' Ossian^ 
with the moon shining through him, within that very hour. 

" Still I would not nave bothered you ; but I know his Most Gracious Majesty King 
William, God bless him ! (who can forget poor Burn's * Tarry Breeks ?') either has 
noticed, or will notice it, the instant he comes to that part of the Log. Mow this, with- 
out explanation, is inconvenient, trousers being likely to come as high up in these days 
as pantaloons, and I have some claim on him, seeing that my uncle. Job Cringle, some 
five-and forty years ago, at Jamaica, in the town of Port Royal, had his head -rails 
smashed, the neb of his nose {atem) bitten off by a bungo, and the end of bis spina 
{atem-poat,) tliat mysteroos point, where man erMa, and monkey begina^ grievously 
shaken in a spree at Kitty Finnan's, in Prince William Henry's company. 

" * Poo, nonsense.* Indeed ! — Why the very devil himself, the author of the evil, 
shall be convinced that there is much peril in the tranapoaition of enda. J will ask hhn 
— "What is a. atemnttation V — (worda being his weapons)— * What ie a sternuta- 
tion ? He shall answer learnedly by the card — * Jl aneexe,* the noee or atem being the 
organ, Than he shall ask Jem 4parkle, * What is a atemutation ?' — Tou laugh, old 
gentleman ; but j^our devil's ' miatack^ looks every inch as queer to a sailor as our top- 
man's answer would sound to you. 

" Yours with all cordiality, notwithstanding, 

" Thomas GjuireLX.'* 



TOtf CRUrOLk's LOO. (% 

« mdnieholy scmgkf through the brushwood that stimmiided the hut; shtu 
king off the heavj dew from the palm and cocoa-nut tree, ISlo large dropf 
t>f rhbfi. 

The hollow tap of the woodpecker ; the clear flute-note of the pavo Sd 
monU ; the discoraant shriek of the macaw ; the shrill cMtr of the wild Qoinea 
fowl : and the chattering of the panxM^uets^ began to b^ beard from the 
wood. The ill-omened gallinaso was sailing andcircling round the hut, and 
the tali flamingo was stalking on the shallows of the lajgoon, the haunt of 
the disgusting alligator, that lay beneath, divided from the sea by a narrow 
mttd*>bank, where a group of pelicans, perched on the wreck of one of our 
boats, were pluming themselves before taking wing. In the east, the deep 
blue of the nrmament, from which the lesser stars were fast fading, all but 
the ** Eye of Mom,** was warming into magnificent purple, and the amber 
rays of the yet unrisen sun were shooting up, streamerJtke, with intervals 
between, through the parting clouds, as they broke awav With a passing 
idiower, that feillike a veil of silver gauze between us and toe first primrose* 
colotiieid streaks of a tropical dawn. 

** That's a musket shot," said the lieutenant The Indian crept on fais 
belly to the door, dropped his chin on the ground, and placed his opeil 
palms behind his ears. The distant wail of a bugle was heard, then three 
or four dropping shots again, in rapid succession. Mr. Splinter stooped to 
go forth, but the Indian caught him by the leg, uttering the single word 
** EsparufUs,'" 

On the instant, a young Indian woman, with a shrieking infant in her 
ftrms, rushed to the door. There was a blue gunshot wound in her neck, 
from which two or three large black clotting gouts of blood were trickling. 
Her long black hair was streaming in coarse braids, and her features were 
{yinched and sharp, as if in the agony of death. She glanced wildly behind, 
and gasped out, ** Escapa, Oreeque, escapayparami, sci mtcerto ya." Another 
shot, and the miserable creature convulstvely clasped her child, whose 
«mall shrill cry I often fancy I hear to this hour blending with its mother's 
death-shriek, and, falling backwards, rolled over the brow of the hill out of 
siglht The ball had pierced the heart of the parent through the body of 
her offipring. By this time a party of Spanish soldiers had surrounded the 
hot, one of whom, kneeling before the low door, pointed his musket into 
it The Indian, who had seen his wife and child thus cruelly shot down 
before his face, now fired his rifle, and the man fen dead. <* Si^a mi Que- 
rlda Btmdia — maldUo,'^ Then springing to his feet, and stretchmg lumself 
to his full height, with his arms extended towards heaven, while a strong 
shiver shook him like an ague fit, he yelled forth the last words he ever 
uttered, ' Venga la suerte, ya sd listo/* and resumed his squattirtg position on 
thejground. 

Half a dozen musket-balls were now fired at random through the wattles 
of the hut, while the lieutenant, who spoke Spanish well, sung out lustily 
that we were English officers who had been shipwrecked. 

** Jlfenitro," growled the officer of the party, " piraias son tuiedes.^ "Pirates 
leagued with Indian bravoes ; fire the hu^ soldiers, and bum the scouii> 
dreUi!" 

There was no time to be lost ; Mr. Splinter made a vigorous attempt to get 
out, in which I seconded him with all the strength that remained to me, but 
they beat us back again with the butts of their muskets. 

" Where are your commissions, your uniforms, if you be British officers ?** 
We had neither, and our fate appeared inevitable. 

The doorway was filled with brushwood, fire was set to the hut, and we 
heard the crackling of the palm thatch, while thick stifling wreaths of white 
maeke burst in upon us through the roof. 

« tsad a band, Tom, now or never, and kick up the daik man there ;^ 



66 TOM OAIHttLK's I.0«. 

but he mt Btill aa a statue. We laid oar Bhoulders to the end wall, and 
heaved at it with all our might ; when we were nearly at the last gasp it 
gaye way, and we rushed headlong into the middle or the party, followed 
by Sneezer, with his shaggy coat, that was full of clots of tar, blazing like 
a torch. He unceremomously seized, '* par la queue,^ the soldier .who had 
throttled me, setting fire to the skirts of nis coat, and blowing up his^ar- 
touche-box. I belieye, under Providence, that the ludicrousness of this attack 
saved us from being bavonetted on the spot It gave time for Mr. 'Splinter 
to recover his breath, when, being a powerful roan, he shook off the two sol- 
diers who had seized him, and dashed into the burning hut again. I thought 
he was mad, especially when I saw him return with his clothes and hair on 
fire, drag^ng out the body of the captain. He unfolded the sail it was 
wrappeom, and p<Mnting to the remains of the naval uniform, in which the 
mutdated and putrefying corpse was dressed, he said sternly to the ofiicer, 
« We are in your power, and you may murder us if you will ; but that 
was my captain four days ajgo, and you see, he at least was a British 
officer — satisfy yourself." The person he addressed, a handsome young 
Spaniard, with a clear olive complexion, oval face, small brown mustaches, 
and large black eyes, shuddered at the horrible spectacle, but did as he was 
requested. 

When he saw the crown and anchor, and his majesty's cipher on the 
appointments of the dead officer; he became convinced of our quality, and 
cnanged his tone — ***Es verdady son de la marina Englesa. But, gentlemen, 
were there not three jpersons in the hut?" 

There were indeed— the flames had consumed the dry roof apd walls 
with incredible rapidity, which by this time had fallen in, but Oreequc was 
nowhere to be seen. I thought I saw something move in th6 midst of the 
fire, but it might have been fancy. Again, the white ashes heaved, and a 
half-consumed hand and arm were thrust through the smouldering mass, 
then a human head, with the scalp burned from the skull, uid the flesh from 
the chaps and cheek-bones ; the trunk next appeared, the bleeding ribs laid 
bare, and the miserable Indian, with his limbs like scorched rafters, stood 
upright before us, like a demon in the midst of the fire. He made no 
attempt to escape, but reeling to and fro. like a drunken man, fell headlong^ 
raising clouds of smoke and a shower of sparks in his fall. Alas ! poor 
Oreeqae, the newly risen son was now shining on your ashes, and on the 
dead bodies of the ill-starred Bondia and her child, whose bones, ere his 
Betting, the birds of the air, and beasts of the forest, will leave as white 
and fleshless as your own. The officer, who belonged to the army invest- 
ing Carthagena, now treated us with great civility ; he heard our story, 
and desired his men to assist us in burying the remains of our late com- 
mander. 

We remained all day on the same part of the coast, but towards evcninjg 
the party fell back on the outposts to which they belong^ed — after travef 
ling an hour or ao we emergc^l from a dry river course, in which the night 
had overtaken us, and came suddenly on a small plateau, where the post 
was established on a promontory of ** Pvnto CanoaJ* There may be braver 
soldiers at a charge, although that I doubt, if they be properly led, but none 
more picturesque in a Hwmae than the Spanish. A gigantic wild cotton- 
tree, to which our largest English oaks would have been but as dwarfs, 
rose on one side, and overshadowed the whole level space. The bright 
beams of the full moon glanced among the topmost leaves, and tipped the 
higher branches with silver, contrasting strangely with the scene below, 
where a large watch-fire cast a strong red glare on the surrounding objects, 
throwing up dense volumes of smoke, which eddied in dun wreaths among 
tiie foliage, and hung in the still night air like a canopy, about ten feet from 
the ground, leaving the space beneath comparatively dear. 



SMC ^HirOLI^ L04U 07 

A temppmy gmtfd^lioiMe, witk a mde rtnaoAwh of bsmboofl and palm 
leaves, had been bwilt bet^Mrem two of the immense Bpars of the Bughty 
tree, that shel out many yaids frem-tbe parent ateisi like wooden buttresMs, 
whBat overhead there was a sort of stage, made of planks laid across the 
lower bonghs^ supporting a quantity of provisions eovered with tarpauhna. 
The aentries in the background, with their glancing arms, were seen pacing 
<m their .watch^ some ef the guard were asleep on wooden benches, and 
•n the platform among tiie branches, where a little baboon-looking old man, 
in the aresa of a dnimner, had perehed'himself, and sat playins a Biscayan 
air on a sort of ba^ipe ; others were gathered rpana the fire, cookins 
their food, or deamng. their anna. It rabne brightly on the long line m* 
Spanish transports that were moored bek>w, stem on to the beach, and on 
the white sails of the armed craft that were still hovering under weigh in 
the offing, which, as the night wore on, stole in, one after another, like 
phantoms of the ocean, and letting go their anchaia with a splash, and a 
oollow rattle ef the cable, remained stiU and silent like the rest. Farther 

* off, it fell in a<Grimson stream on the suiface of the shekercd bay, struggling 
with the -light of the gentle moon, and tinging with blood the small waves 
Chat twinkled in her stiver wake, across which a guard boat would now 
and then glide, |ike a fairy thing, the arms of the men flashing badk the red 
fight 

Beyond the influence of the hot smoky glare, the ^orious planet reas- 
sumed her . sway in the midst of her atitenaant stars, and the relieved eye 
wandered iforth mto the lovely night, where the noiseless shee^lightning 
waa glancing, and ever and anon uMiting up for an instant some fantastic 
shape in the fleecy clouds, like promgies forerunning the destruction of the 
stronghold over which they impended: while beneam, the lofty ridge of the 
eonvent-crowned Popa, the citadel of San Felipe bristling with cannon, 
the white batteries' and many towers of the fatcMl city of Caithagena, and 
tii^ Spanish blockading squadron at anchor before it, slept in the moonlight. 
We were civilly received by the captain, who apologpzed for the disoomfoit 
under which we most pass the ni^t. He gave as the best he had, an4 
that was bad enough, both of food «md wine, before showing us into the 

^ hut, where we found a rough deal oofiin l^png on the very bench that was 
to be our bed. Thi^ he ordered away with a)l the qo<4ness in the world. 
'< It was only anc of his people who had died that morning of vomtjo, or 
yellow fever." 

** Comfortable country this,*^ qooth Splinter, *< and a pleasant morning 
we have had of it, Tom T' 

Next morning, we proceeded towards the Spanish head-quarters, provided 
with horses through tbe kindness of the captain ef the outpost, ami preceded 
by a guide on an ass. He was a nurenot or man of o<4oiir, who, in place 
of bestriding his beast, ^fethered his limbs under him, and sat cross-legged 
on it'like a tailor : so thqjt when you saw the two ** end en,** the efiect was 
laughable enoaga, the flank and tail of the ass appearing to constitute the 
Tower part of the man, as if he had been a sort of composite animal, like 
the ancient satjrr. The read traversed a low swampy country, from which 

' the rank moisture arose in a hot palpate mist, and creased several shallow 
lagoons, from two to six feet deep, of tepid, muddy, b^kish water, some 
fit them half a mile broad, and swarming with wild WateMowl. On these 
occasions, our friend the satyr was signalled to make sail ahead on hia 
donkey to pilot as ; and as the water deepened, he would betake himself 
te ewimming in its wake, holding on by toe tail, and shoutings *< Cvidado 
Bwrricot CMado que no it akogas.** 

While passing through the largest of these, we noticed several calabashes 
about pistol-shot on our right ; and as we fancied one of them bobbed now 
«nd then, it struck me they might be ladiain fishing-floats. To satisfy my 

44—6 



68 lOM CRIN6Lft'« LO0. 

eurioflity, I hauled my wind, and leaving the tiack^e were onyOnram nvr 
hone towards the sroup. The two first that I lifted had nothing attached 
to them, but proved to be mere empty gourds floating before the wkid ; but 
idien I tried to seize the largest, it eladed my ^rasp in a most incompre- 
hensible manner, and slid away astern of me with a cvrious hollow gab- 
bling sort «of noise, whereupon my palfrey snorted and reared, and nearly 
capsized me over his bows. What a noble fish, thon^ht I, as I tacked io 
chase, but my Bucephalus refused to face it I therefor bore up to join 
my companions again ; but in requital of the disappointment, smashed the 
gourd in passing with the stick I held in my hand, when, to my unutterable 
surprise, and amidst shouts of laughter frem our rnvrenOf the head and 
shoulders of an Indian, with a quantity of sedges tied round his neck, and 
buoyed up by ha]f-a>dozon dead teal fastened by the legs to his siidle, started 
up before me. ** ^ve Maria fntrissima ! you have broken my head, senor.*' 
But as the vegetable helmet had saved his skull, of itself possibly none of 
the softest, a small piece of money spliced the fend between us : and aa 
he fitted his pate witn another calabash, preparatory to resuming his cruise, 
he joined in our meniment, although from a different cause, — '^What eon 
these English simpletons see so very comical in a poor Indian catchipg 
wild^aoks?»' 

Shortly after, we entered a forest of magnificent trees, whose sombre 
shade, on fitst passing from the intolerable glare of the sun; seemed absolute 
darkness. The branches were alive with innumerable tropical birds and 
insects, and were laced toother by a thick tracery of withes, along which 
a guana would occasionally dart, coming nearest of all the reptiles I had 
seen to the shape of the fabled dragon. 

But how dijibrent from the clean stems and beautiful greensward of our 
English woods ! Here, you were confined to a quagmire by impervious 
underwood of prickly pear, penguin, and speargra!ss ; and when we rode 
under the drooping branches of the trees, that the leaves might brush away 
the halo of musquitoes, flying ants, and other winged plagues that buzased 
about our temples, we found, to onr dismay, that we had made bad worse 
by the introduction of a whole colony oi garapatosf^ or Wood-ticka, into 
our eyebrows and hair. At len^h, for the second time, so far as I was 
concerned, we reached the head-quarters at Torrecilla, and were well re- 
ceived by the Spanish commander-in-chief, a tall, ^ood-looking, soldierlike 
man, whose personal qualities had an excellent foil in the captain-general 
of the provinee, an old friend of mine, as already mentioned, and who 
certainly looked full as like a dancing-master, or, at the best, perruquier en 
general to the staff, as a viceroy. 

General Morillo, however, had a great share of Sancho Panza shrewd- 
ness, and I will add kindness, about nim. We were drenched and misera* 
ble when we arrived, yet he mieht have turned us over, naturally enough, 
to the care of his stafl; No such thing ; the first thing he did was to walk 
both of us behind a canvass screen, that shut off one end of the large barn- 
like room, where a long table was laid for dinner. This was his sleeping 
apartment, and drawing out of a leather bag two suits of uniform, he riggeo 
us almost With his own hands. Presently a point of war was sounded by 
half-a-dozen trumpeters, and Splinter and I made our appearance each in 
the dress of a Spanish general. The party consisted of Morillo*s personal 
staff, the captain-geneml, the enqtdsidor general, and several colonels and 
majors of different re^ments. In all, twenty people sat down to dinner ; 
among whom were several young Spanish noblemen, some of whom I had 
met on my former visit, who, having served in the Peninsular war under 
the great duke, made their advances with gieat cordiality. Strange enough 
— Splinter and 1 were the only parties present in uniform ; all the others, 
priesta and soldlerq, were ddtbeo in gingham ooats and wlute trousers. 



TOM CRIHOLS'fl L0«. 69 

Tbe besieging force at this time was composed of about five thousand 
Spaniards, as fine troops as I ever saw, and three thousand Creoles under 
the command of th^t desperate fellow Morales. I was not long in recogniz- 
ing an old friend of mine in the person of Captain Bayer, an aid-de-camp 
of Morillo, among the company. He was very kind and attentiye, and 
rather startled me by speaking very tolerable English nowj from a kindly 
motive I make no question, whereas, when I liad known him before in 
Kingston, he professed to speak nothing but Spanish or French. He was 
a German by birth, and lived to rise to the rauK of colonel in the Spanish 
arm^, where he subsequently greatly distinguished himself^ but he at leneth 
fell m some obscure skirmish in New Granada ; and my old ally Morillo, 
Count of Carthagena, is now living in penury, an exile in Paris. 

After being, as related, furnished with food and raiment, we retired to 
our quatres, a most primitive sort of couch, being a simple wooden frame, 
with a piece of canvass stretched over it However, if we had no mat* 
tresses, we had none of the disagreeables often incidental to them, and 
fatigue proved a good opiate, for we slept soundly until the drums and 
trumpets of the troops, getting under arms, awoke us at davlight The 
sfhiy was under weigh to occupy Carthagena, which had fallen through 
famine, and we had no choice but to accompany it 

I knew nothing of the misery of a siege but by description ; the realiQr, 
even to me, case-hardened as I was by my own recent sufferings, was 
dreadfuL We entered by the gate of the ravo/, or suburb. There was 
not a living thing to be seen in the street ; the houses had been pulled down 
that the fire of the place might not be obstructed in the event of a lodgment 
in the outwork. We paswd on, t^p military music echoing moumfidly 
among the ruined walls, to the main gate, or Puerto de Tieroy which was 
also open, and tt^e drawbridge lowered. Under the archway, we saw a 
delicate female, worn to the bone, and weak a? an infant, gathering gar- 
bage of the most loathsome description, thei^oBsession of which had been 
successfully disputed by a carrion crow. A little farther on, the bodies of 
an old man and two smaU children were putrefying in the sun, while be- 
side them lay a miserable, wasted, dying negro, vainly endeavouring to 
iieep at a distance with a pahn branch a number of the same obscene birds 
that were al^ady devouring the caicass of one of the infants ; before two 
hours, the faithful servant, and those he attempted to defend, were equally 
the prey of the disgusting gaUinaso, The houses, as we proceeded, appNSaiea 
entirely deserted, except were a sohtary spectre*Iike inhabitant appeared 
at a balcony, and feebly exclaimed, *' Vvea lo^ EspanoUs ! Viva^ Fernando 
Septimo /" — We saw no doniestic animal whatsoever, not even a cat or a 
do^; but I Will not dwell on these horrible details any longer. 

One morning, shortly after our arrival, as we strolled beyond the land 
gate, we came to a place where four banqtiiUos (a sort of short bench or stool, 
with an upright post at one end firmly fixed mto the ground) were placed op- 
posite a dead wall. They were painted black, and we were not left long m 
suspense as to their use ;. for solemn music, and the roll of muffled drums 
in the distance, were fearful irrdications (^ what we were to witness. 

First canve an entire regiment of Spanish infantry, which, filing off, 
formed three sides of a square, — the wall near which the banqmllos were 
placed forming the fourth ; then eight priests, and as many choristers chant- 
mg the service for the dying ; next came several mounted officers of the 
staff, and four firing parties of twelve men each. Three Spanish American 
prisoners followed, dressed in white, with crucifixes in tneir hands, each 
supported, more dead than alive, bv two priests ; but when the fourth 
victim appeared, we could neither look at nor think of anything else. 

On inquiry we found he was an Englishman, of the name of S ; 

fingUsh, that is, in all except the place of his birth, for his whole education 



70 TOM cuvglk's loo. 

had been Ehiefisli, as were his parent»«id all hk family ; bnt ft came out; 
accklentally f believe, on his tnal, that he had been 6oni at Bvenoa Ayresy 
and having joined the patriots, this brought treason home to him, which he 
was now \ea forth to expiate. Whilst his fello w-suSerers appeared crashed 
down to the very earth, under their intense asony, so that they had to be 
supported as they tottered Awards the place of execution, he stepped firm- 
ly and manfully out, and seemed impatient when, at any time, from the 
crowding in front, the procession was obliged to halt. At length they 
reached the fatal spot, and his three eompauions in misery being placed 
astride on the banqtiUloSj tiieir arms were twisted round the upright posts, and 
fastened to them with cords, their backs being towardt the soldiers, I^r. 

S walked Brmly up to the vacant bench^ knelt down, and covering his 

fkee vnth his hands^ re»ted his head on the edge of it For a biief space 
he seemed to be engaged in prayer, during which he sobbed audibly, but 
Mon recovering himsen, he rose, and folding his arms across his breast, sat 
down slowly and delibemtely on Uie banquiUo, lacing the firing party with 
an unshrinking eye. 

He was now told that he must turn his back and submit to be tied like 
Ae others. He resisted this, but on force being attempted to be used, he 
sprung to his feet, and stretclun^ out his hand, while a dark red flush pase- 
m trannently across his pale face, he exclaimed in a loud voice, '*Thus, 
flins, and not otherwise, you mmi butcher me ; but I am an Englishman, ana 
no traitor, nor will I die the death of one.*' Moved by his gallantry, tiie 
soldiers withdrew, and left him standing. At diis time the sun was in- 
tensely hot, it was high noon, and the monk who attended Mr. 8 held 
an umbrella over his head ; but the preparations being completed, he kiss- 
ed him on both ciie^s, wlule the l^ot tears trickled down his own, and was 
stepping back, when the unhappy man said to him, with the most peifeeC 
eomposure, ** Todmia. fodrt, todovio, mucho mt pula la sombraJ* But the 
time had arrived, the kind-he»rted monk wasobhged to retire. Th^ signal 
was given, the musketry rattled, and they were as clods of the valley — 
'* Truly," quoth old Splmter, ** a num. does eemeHmes beetHne a hsrse by being 
bom in a si/Me?* 

Some time after this we were allowed to go to the villaes of Turbaeco, a 
few nules distant fivm the city, for change of tu. On Oie third morning 
after our arrival, about the dawning, I was suddenly awakened by a shower 
of dust on my face, and a violent shaking of tlie bed, accompanied by a 
low grumblin g u nearthly noise, which seemed to pass immediately under 
where I lay. iVere I to liken it to anything I had ever experiencecf before, 
it would be to the lumbering and tremor of a large wason in a tempestuous 
night, heard and felt through the thin walls oS a London house. — Like— 
yet how fearfully difierent ! 

In a few seconds the motion ceased, and the nmse gradually died away 
in hollow echoes in the distance — whereupon ensued such a crowing of 
cocks, cackling of geese, barking of doss, lowing of kine, neighing of 
horses, and shouting of men, women, and children, among the negro and 
coloured domestics, as baffles all description, whilst the various white in- 
mates of the house (the rooms, for air and coolness, being without ceiling, 
and simply divided by partitions run up about ten feet hi|n) were, one and 
all, calling to their servants and each other, in accents which did not by any 
means evince great composure. In a moment this hubbub again sank into 
the deepest silence — man, and the beaste of the field, and the fowls of the 
air, became mute with breathless awe, at the impending tremendous mani- 
festation of the power of that Almighty Being in whose hands the hills are 
as a very little thing — for the appalling voice of the earthquake was onee 
more heard growlins afar ofi*, hke distant thunder mingling with the rush- 
ing of a mij^ty wind, waxing louder and louder as it approached, and op- 



TOM CEIITGLE^S LOG. 71 

keaving the sure and fem-set earth into long undulations, as if its sorface 
had been the rolling swell of the fathomless ocean. The house rocked, 
pictnres of saints fell from the walls, tables and chairs were overturned, the 
window frames were thrown out of their embrasures and broken in pieces, 
beams and rafters groaned and screamed, crushing the tiles of the roof into 
ten thousand fragments. In several places the. ground split open into 
chasms a fathom wide, with an explosion like « cannon-snot; the very 
foundation of the house seemed td be sinkins under us ; and whilst men 
and women rushed like maniacs naked into the fields, with a yell as if the 
day of judgment had arrived, and the whole brute creation, in an agony of 
fear, made the most desperate attempts to break forth from their enclosures 
into the open air, the end wall of my apartment was shaken down ; and 
falling outwards with a deafening crash, disclosed, in the dull gr^y myste- 
nons twilight o€ morning) the huge snarled trees that overshadowed the 
building, bending and groaning amidst clouds of dust, as if they had been 
tormented by a tempest^ although the air was calm and motionless as dea^ 



CHAPTER V. 

THE PICCAROON. 

<< Ours the wild life in tttmult still to range.'* 

Thb GoasAiB. 

Some time after this, we once more returned to Carthagena, to be at hand 
should any opportunity occur for Jamaica, and were lounging about one 
forenoon on the fortifications, looking with sickening hearts out to seawaird, 
when a voice struck up the following negro ditty close to us : 

." Fader was a Corromantee, 
Moder was a Mingo, 
Blaclc picaninny buccra wantee, 
So dem sell a me Peter, by jiDgo, 

Jiggery, jiggery, jiggery." 

<*Well sung, Massa Bungo," exclaimed Mr. Splinter; "where do you 
hail from, ray hearty ?" 

« Hillo ! Bungo, mdeed I free and easy dat, anyhow. Who you youse^ 
eh?»' 

" Why, Peter," continued the lieutenant, **idon't you know me ?" 

** Cannot say dat I do," rejoined the negro, very gravely, without lifting 
his head, as he sat mending his jacket in one of the embrasures near the 
water gate of the arsenal — " Have not de honour of your acquaintance, 
sir." 

He then resumed his scream, for song it could not be called : — 

*< Mammy Sally's daughter 

Lose him shoe in an old canoe 
Dat lay half full of water. 

And den she knew not what to do. 

J>gg«'7»j»g ** 

<' Confound your jiggery, jiggery, sir 1 But I know you well enou^, my 
man ; and you can scarcely have forgotten Lieutenant Splinter of the Torch, 
one would think ?^ 

6* 



7S voM c&nrdLB's i4W. 

Howerw, it waidow that the f>oor feUow leaUy had not kaonim as ; hr 
the name so startled him, that, in his harry to unlaee his legs from under * 
him, as he sat tailw-fashion, he furly capaize4 out of lus perch, and toppled 
down on his nose — a feature fortunately so flattened by the hand of nature, 
that I question if it could have been rendered move «btns«had -he fallen out 
of the maintop on a timber head, or a marine cheer's. 

<* £h ! — no ~ yes, him sure enough ; and ^ho is 69 picanin&y hoffieer-— 
Oh ! I see, Massa Tom Cringle^ ? Garamig^y, gentleilEien, where have you 
drop from ? — Where is de old Toreh ? Many a time iuib I Peter Mao- 
grove, pilot to him Britannic majesty sqnoi^on, taken the M brig in and 
Sirough amon£ de keys at Port Koyal !** ' ' 

" Ay, and new often did you scour her copper agaisst the coral reefs^ 
Peter?" 

His majesty's pilot gave a kaowibg look, and laid his hand on his bcaast 
•— " No more of dat if vou love me, massa.*' 

" Well, weU, it don't siniify now^ my hoy : »he will never give you that 
trouble again — foundered — all hands lost, P<eter, but the two you see be- 
fore you." 

'* Worry sorry, Massa Plinter, werry sorry -^ What! de Uack cook's- 
mate and all ? — But misfortune can't be help. Stop till I put up my needle, 
and I will take a turn wid you." Hers he drew himself up with a great 
deal of absurd gravity. *' Proper dat British hoificer in distress should 
assist one anoder — * We shall consult togeder. How can I serve you ?" 

" Why, Peter, if you could help us to a passage to Port Ro^al, it would 
be serving us most essentially. When we useato be lying there, a week 
seldom passed without one of the squadron arriving from this ; but 
here have we been for more than a monta, without a sin^e pennant behing- 
ing to the station having looked in : our money is runnmg short, and if we 
are to hold on in CarSiagena for another sir weeks, we shaH not have a 
shot left in the locker-- not a edpper to tinkle on a tomb-atone," 

The negro looked steadfastly at us, then carefully around. There was 
BO one near. 

" You see, Massa Plinter, I am desirable to serve you, for one little rea^ 
son of my own ; but, beside dat, it is good for me at present to make some 
friend wid de hofficer of de squadron, being as how dat I am absent widout 
leave." 

''Oh, I perceive— a large R against your name in the master attendant's 
books, eh ?" 

" You have hit it, sir, werry close j besides I long mosh to return to 
my poor wife, Nancy Cator, dat I leave, wagabone dat I is, just about to 
be confine." 

I could not resist patting ipi my oar. 

"I saw Nancy just before we sailed, Peter, — fine child that ; not quite 
so black as you though." 

** Ohj massa," said Snowball, grinning and showing his white teeth, 
*' you know I am such a terrible black fellow — But you are a leetle out at 
present, massa — I meant, about to be confined in de workhouse, for steal- 
mg^e admiral's Muscovy ducks ;" and he laughed loud and long. — '' How- 
ever, if you will protnise dat you will stand my friends, I will put you in de 
way of gettin V a shove across to de east end of Jamaica ; and I will go 
wid ^ou, too, for company." 

** Thank you," reioined Mr. Splinter ; " but how do you mean to manage 
this ? There is no Kingston traaer here at present, and you don't mean to 
make a start of it in an open boat, do you ?" 

" No, sir, I don't ; but in de first place •— as you are a gentleman, will 
y<m try and get me off when we get to Jamaica ? Secondly, will you pro^ 
dat you will not seek to know more of de vessel you may go in. 



lOM CRUraLB's LOG. 73 

ttor of her erow, daa dey are wiUing to tell yoa, {>M>viMi you lure landed 
safe." 

** Why, Peter, I scarcely think you would deceive us, ftnr you know I saved 
your bacon in that awkward affiur, when through drunkenness you phtmp- 
ed the Torch ashore, iio — " 

' <* Forget d&t, sir, '— forget dat ! — Never shall poor black pilot forget how 
you saved him from being seized up, when de gratings, boatswain's mates, 
mad all, were ready at de gangway-^ never snail poor black rascal forget 
4at" 

** Indeed I do not think you would wittingly betray us into trouble, 
Peter ; and as I guess you mean one of the forced traders, we will venture 
in her rather than kick abont here any longer, and pay a moderate sum for 
our passage. 

** ben wait here five minutes," -« and so^ajring he slipped down through 
the embrasure into a canoe that lay beneath, and in a trice we saw lum 
Jump on board of a long low nondescript kind of craft, that lay moored 
-within pistol-shot of the walls. 

She was a lar^ shallow vessel, coppered to the bends, of great breadth 
of beam, with bright sides, like an American, so "jiaiBted as to give her a 
domsy mercantile sheer externally, but there were many things that belied 
this to a nautical eye :. her copper, for instance, was bright as burnished 
gold on her very sharp bows aiia beautiful run ; and we could see from the 
bastion where we stood, that her decks were flush and level. She had no 
cannon mounted that were visible, but we distinguished grooves on her well- 
scnibbed decks, as from the recent traveraingof carronade elides, while the 
bohs and lin^ in her hi^ and solid bulwarks shone clear and bright in the 
ardent noontide^ There waii a tarpawting stretched over a quantity of mb* 
bish, old sails, old junk, and hencoops, rather ostentatiously piled up for- 
ward, which we conjectured might conceal a long ^on. 

She was a very taut-rig»e4 hermaphrodite, or bns forward and schooner 
aft. Her foremast and bowsprit were immensely strong and heavy, 
and her mainmast was so long and tapering, that the wonder was, 
how the few shrouds and stays about it could support it : it was the hand- 
somest stick we had ever seen. EUsr upper spars were on the same scale, 
tapering away through topmast, topgallant^mast, ro}ral and skysail-masts, 
until they fined away into slender wands. The sails, that were loose to 
dry, were old, and patched, and evidently displayed to cloak the character 
of the vessel, by an ostentatious show of^ their unserviceable condition, but 
her rigging was beautifully fitted, every rOpe lyin^ in the chafe of another 
beins carefullv served with hide. ' There weie several large bushy-whis/ 
kered fellows lounging about the deck, with their' hair gathered into dirty net 
ba^, like the fishermen of Barcelona ; manjt had red silk sashes round 
their waists, through which were stuck their long knives, in shark-skin 
sheaths. Their numbers were not so great as to excite suspicion ; but a 
eertain daring reckless manner weula* at onee have distinguished them, 
independently of any thing else, from the quiet, hard-woikM, red-shirted 
merchant seaman. 

** That chap is not much to be trusted," said the lieutenant ; '* his bunt- 
ing would make a few jackets for Joseph, I take it" But we had- little 
time to be critical before our friend Peter came paddling back with another 
blackamoor in the stem, of as ungainly an exterior as could well be im- 
agined. He was a very large man* whose weight every now and then, as 
they breasted the short sea, cocked up the snout of the canoe with Peter 
Mangrove in it, as if he had been a cork, leaving Mm to flourish bis paddle 
in the air, like the weather-wheel of a steam-boat in a sea-way. The new 
comer was strong and broad-shouldered, with long muscular arms, and a 
chfist like Heicutos ; but hvi legs ud thighs weceyfor his bulk, lemaikally 



74 tote CRiiroLE^B uta* 

puny and missfaapen. A thick fell of black wool, in close tufts, tts if his 
lacfe had been stuck full of cloves, covered his chin and upper lip ; and his 
hair, if hair it could be called, was twisted into a hundred short plaits, that 
bristled out, and gave his head, when he took his hat off, the appearance of 
a porcupine. There was a large sabre-cut across his nose, and down his 
cheek, and he wore two immense gold ear-rings. His dress consisted of 
short' cotton drawers, that did not reach within two inches of his knee, leav- 
ing his thin cucumber shanks (on which the small bullet-like calf appeared 
to havo been stuck before, through mistake, in dace of abaft) naked to the 
shoe ; a check shirt, and an enormously large Panama hat, made of a sor 
of cane, split small, and worn shoveUfashion. Notwithstanding, he made 
his bow by no means ungracefully, and offered his services in choice 
Spanish, but spoke English as soon as he heard who we were. 

'* Pray, sir, are you Sie master of that vessel ?** said the lieutenant 

" No, sir, I am the mate, and I learn you are desirous of a passage Co 
Jamaica." This was spoken with a broad Scotch accent ' 

"Yes, we are," saia I, in very great astonishment; "but we will not 
sail with the devU ; and who ever saw a negro Scotchman before, the spirit 
of Nicol Jarvie conjured into a blackamoor's skin V* 

The fellow laughed. <' Lam black, as you see ; so were my father and 
mother before me." And he looked at me, as much as to say, I have resd 
the book you quote from. " But I was bom in- the good town of Port Glas- 
^w, notwithstanding, and many a voyage 1 have made as cabin-boy and 
cook, in the good ship the Peggy Bogle, with worthy old Jock Hunter ; but 
that matters not I was told you wanted to go to Jamaica ; I dare say 
our captain Will take you for a moderate passage-money. But here hie 
comes to speak for himself. —Captain Yanderbosh, here are two shipwreck^ 
ed British officers, who wish to be put on shor^ on the east end of Jamaica ; 
will you take them, and what will you charge for their passage ?»' 

The man he spoke to was nearly as tall as himself; ne was a sun-burnt, 
angular, raw-boned, iron-visaged veteran, with a nose in shape and colour 
like the bowl of his own pipe^ bat not at all, according to the received idea, 
like a Dutchman. His dress was quizzical enough — white trousers, a 
long-flapped embroidered waistcoat, that might have beloncred to a Spanish 
grandee, with an old-fashioned French-cut coat, showins me frayed marks 
where the lace had been stripped oi!^ voluminous in the skirts, but very 
tight in the sleeves, which were so short as to leave his large bony paws, 
and six inches of his arm above the wrist, exposed ; altc^ether, it fitted him 
likea purser's shirt on a handspike. 

" Yy, for von hondred thaler, I will land dem safe in Mancheoneal Bfty ; 
but how shall ve manage, Yilliamson 7 De cabin vas point yesterday^" 

The Scotch, negro nodded. "Tfever mind ; I dare say the smell of the 
paint won't signify to the gentlemen." 

The bargain was ratified, we agreed to pay the stipulated sum, and that 
same evening, having dropped down with the last of the sea-breeze, we set 
sail from Bocca Ohica, and began working up under the lee of the headland 
of Punto Canoa. When off the San Domingo Gate, we bunied a blue 
light, which was immediately a^iswered by another in shore of us. In the 
glare, we could perceive two boats, full of men. Any one who has ever 
played at snap-dragon, can inwgine the unearthly appearance of objects 
when seen by this species of firework. In the present mstancc, it was htld 
alotl OB a boat-hook, and cast a strong spectral light on the band of lawless 
ruffians, who were so crowded together, that they entirely filled the boats, 
no part of which could- be seen. It seemed as if two clusters of fiends, sud- 
denly vomited forth from hell, were floating on the surface of the midnigffat 
sea, in the midst of brimstone flames. In a few moments, our crew waff 
BtniDgtheiied by about fiorty as ugly Chiistiwis t$ I ever wt eyes ob. Th&f 



were of all a^es, oountriee, eomplexiona, and tongueB, and looked as if tbey 
had been kidnapped by a pressing, as they bad knocked off from the 
Tower of Babel. From the moment ihey came on board, Captain Vander- 
bosb was shorn of all his glory, and ssaik into the petty officer, while, to 
our amazement, the Scottish negro took the command, eyincing great cool- 
ness, ener^, and skill. He ordered the schooner to be wore, as soon as 
we had shipped the men, and laid her head off the land, then set all hands 
to shift the old suit of sails, and to bend new ones. 

'* Why did you not shift your canvass before we started.?*' said I to the 
Dutch captain, or mate, or whatever he might be. 

^* Yy Tont you be content to take a quiet passage and hax no question ?*' 
was the uncivil rejoinder, which I felt inclined to resent, until 1 remembered 
that we were in the hands of the Philistines, where a quarrel would have beea 
worse than useless. I was gulping down the infiult as well as I could, when 
the black captain came ail, ana, with the air of an equal, invited us into the 
tnhin to take a glass of grog. We had scarcely sat down before we heard 
a noise like the swaying up of guns, or some other heavy articles, from the 
hold. 

I caught Mr. Splinter's < eye— > he nodded, but said nothing. In half an 
hour afterwards, when we went on deck, we saw, by the light of the moon, 
twelve eighteen*pound.carronades mounted, six of a side, with their ae<> 
companiments oi rammers and sponges, water buckets, boxes of round, 
grape, and canister, and tubs of waddmg, while the combin^^ of the hatch- 
ways were quickly studded with round shot The tarpawhnff and lumber 
forward had disappeared, and dwre lay long Tom ready levelled, grinning 
on his pivot. 

" The ropes were all coiled away, and laid down in regular man-of-war 
fashion ; vmile an ugly gruff beast of a Spanish mulatto, apparency the 
officer of the watch, walked the wea&eivside of the quarter-deck, in the 
true pendulum style. Look-outs were placed aft, and at the gangways and 
bows, who eveiT now and then passed the word to keep a bright look-out, 
while the rest of the watch were stretched silent, but evidently broad awake, 
tmder the lee of the boat. We noticed that each man had his cutlass 
buckled round his waist — that the boarding-pikes had been cut loose from 
the main boom, lound which they had been stopped, and that about thirty 
muskets were ranged along a fixed radc, that ran athwart ships, near the 
Biain hatchway. 

By the time we had reconnoitred thus far, the n^ht became overcast, and 
a thick bank of clouds begem to rise to windward; some heavy drops of 
jain fell, and the thunder grumbled at a distance. The black veil crept 
gradually on, until it shrouded the whole firm&ment, and left us in as dark 
a night as ever poor devils were out in. By and by, a narrow streak of 
bright moonlight appeared under the lower edge of the bank, defining the 
da» outlines of the tumbling multitudinous bnlows on the horizon, as dis* 
tinctly as if they had been pasteboard waves in a theatre. 

** Is that a sail to windward, in the dear, think you ?" said Mr. Splinter 
to me in a whisper. At this moment it lightened visridly. "1 am sure it 
is," continued he — <*I could see her white canvass glance just now." 

I looked steadier, and, at last, caught the small dark speck against the 
biisht background, rising and falling on the swell of the sea like a feather. 

As we stood on, she was seen more distinctly, but, to all appearance, 
nobody was aware of her proximity. We were mistaken in this, however, 
for the captain suddenly jumped on a gun, and gave his orders with a fiery 
energy that startled us. 

** Leroux P' A small French boy was at his side in a moment <'For- 
waid, and call all hands to shorten sail ; but, dtmeemeni, you land-crab I — 
Man the lore clew-garnets.— .Hands by the topgallant clew-lines— peak 



T6 soM CBivou^ tjoa. 

■nd tfaraot famlyBirfB— >^ down-baid— nw tuitu sad eheete — I«t ffr — 
tAew op — settle away &.e main-eaff tbere ! " 

In almost as short a space as I have taken to wiile it, evdryinch of caii- 
Yass was close iiuled — every ii^t, except tlie one in the binnaele, antf that 
was eaotionsly masked, carefhUy eztingaisfaed—- a hundred and twenty 
men at qoarters, and the ship ander bare poles. The head yaids were Uien 
Moared, and we bore up before the wind. The stratagem proved suocess- 
fm ; the strange sail conld be seen through the night glasses, cracking on 
dose to the wind, evidently under the impression mat we had tacked. 

''Dere she goes, chasing de Gk>bel,'' said the Dutchman. 

She now bumeid a blue hght, by whicb we saw she vras a heavy cotter 
— without doubt our old fellow-cruiser the Spark. The Dutchman had 
Amie to the same conclusion. 

** My eye, captain, no use to dodge from her ; it is only dat footy ktde 
king's cutter on the Jamaica station.*' 

*' It is her, true enough," answered Williamson ; ^ and she is from Santa 
Martha with a freight of specie, I know. I will try a brush with her^ 
by »» 

. Splinter struck in before he could finish this irreverent exclamation. ^ If 
your conjecture be true, I know the craft — a heavy vessel of her class, and 
you may depend on hard knotka and small profit if you do take her ; while, 
if she takes you " 

<^ III be hanged if she does -> " and be grimied at the conceit — &en 8et> 
ting his teeth hard, <' or rather, I will blow the schooner up with my own 
hand before I strike ; better that than have one*B bones bleached in chains 
on a key at Port Royal. But, you see you cannot control us, ^ntlemen ; 
so get down into the cable tier, and tako Peter Mangrove with you. I 
would not willingly see those come to harm who have trusted me." 

However, there was no shot Bjiag as yet, we therefore stayed on dedu 
All sail was once more made ; the carronades were cast loose on both sides, 
and double-shotted ; the long gun slewed round ; the tack of the fore-and- 
aft foresail hauled up, and we kept by the wind, and stood after the cotter^ 
whose white canvass we couM still see through the gloom bke a snow- 
wreath. 

As soon as she saw us she tacked and stood towsrds us, and came bowl- 
ing along gallantly, with the water roaring and flashing at her bows. As 
the vessels near^ each other, they both shortened sail, and finding that 
we could not weather her, we steered close under her lee. 

As we crossed on opposite tacks her commander hailed, *<Ho^ the hiig- 
antine, ahoy !" 

'^Hillo !" sung out blackie, as he backed his naintopsait 

« What schooner is that ?" 

•* The Spanish schooner Caridad." 

" Whence, and whither bound ?'* 

" Carthagena to Porto Rico." 

*< Heave- to, and send your boat on t)oaid." 

** We have none that vrill swim, sir." 

" Very well — bring-to, and I will send mme." 

"Call away the boarders,'* said our captain, in a low stem tone ; 'Met 
them crouch out of sight behind the boat.*' 

The cutter wore,' and hove-to under our lee Quarter, within pistol-shot ; 
we heard the rattle of the ropes running through the davit blocks, and the 
splash of the jolly boat touching the water, then the measured stroke of 
the oars, as they glanced like silver in the sparkling sea, and a voice call- 
hig out, ** Give way, my lads.*' 

The character of the vessel we were on board of was now evident ; and 
the bitter reflection that we were chained to the stake on board of a pirate^ 



T»K CRoroiA's Loe» 77 

^on the eve of a fierce contoKt witk one of our owti «nibierfl, wms aggravated 
by the Gonsideration that the cutter had fallen into a snare, vby which a 
whole boat's crew would be sacrificed before a i^hot was fired. 

I '^ktchad my opportunity as she pulled up alon^ide, and called out, 
leaning well orer the nettings, << Get back to your ship ! *- treachery ! get 
back to your ship !>' 

The little French serpent was at my side with the speed of thought, his 
leng clear knife glancing in one hand, while the fingers of the other were 
laid CHI his lips. He could not have said more plainly, ** Hold jour tongue, 
or I'll cut ^oar throat ;'* but Sneeser now startled him by rushing between 
us, and giving a short anery growl. 

The ofilcer in the boat nad heard me imperfectly ; he rose up — *^ I won't 
so back, my good man, until I see what you are made of;" and as he spoke 
He sprung on board, but the instant he got over the bulwarks he- was caught 
by two strong hands, gagged and thrown bodily down the main hatchway. 

" Heare,'' cried a voice, ^ and with a will !" and four cold 33-poond shot 
wera hove at once into the boat alongside, which crashing through her bot.- 
torn, swamped her in a moment, precipitating her miserable crew into Uie 
boiling sea. Their shrieks still ring in my ears as they clung to the oars 
and some loose planks of the boat 

^ Brin<^ up the officer, and take out the gag,'' said Williamson. 

Poor Walcolm, who bad been an old messmate of mine, was now drag- 
ged to the gangway half naked, his face bleeding, and heavily ironed, wben 
the blackamoor, elapping a pistol to his head, bid him, as he feared instant 
death, hail " that the boat was swamped under the counter, and to send 
another." The poor fellow, who appeared stunned and cenfused, did so, 
frat without seeming to know what he said. 

''Good Gk>d," sara Mr. Splinter, *^ don't you mean to pick up the boat's 
crew ?" 

The blood curdled to my heart as the black savage answered in a voice 
of thunder, *<Let them drown and be damned ! fill, and stand on !" 

But the clouds by this time broke away, and the mild moon shone clear 
and bright once more upon this scene of most atrocious villany. By her 
light tlfe cutter's people could see that there was no one struggling in the 
water now, and tnat the people must either have been saved, or were past 
all earthly aid ; but the infamous deception was not entirely at an end. 

The captain of the cutter, seeing we were making sail, did the same, and 
after having shot ahead ofin, hailed once more. 

" Mr. Walcolm, why don't you run to leeward, and heave-to, sir ?" 

" Answer him instantly, and hail again for another boat," said tho sable 
fiend, and cocked his pistol. 

The click went to my heart The young midshipman turned his pale 
mild countenance, laced with his blood, upwards towards s the moon and 
stars, as one who had looked his last look on earth ; the large tears were 
flowing down his cheeks, and mingling with the crimson streaks, and a 
flood of silver light fell on the fine features of the poor boy, as he said firmly, 
** Never." The miscreant fired, and he fell dead. 

" Up with the helm, and wear across her item." The order was obeyed. 
'"Fire !*' the whole broadside was poured in, and we could hear the shot 
rattle and tear along the cilttei's deck, and the shrieks and groans of tfa« 
wounded, while the white splinters danced away in all directions. 

We now ranged alongside, and close action commenced, and never do I 
lizpect to see such an infernal scene again. Up to this moment there had 
been neither confusion nor noise cm board the pirate -^ all had been cool- 
ness and order ; but when the yards locked, the crew broke loose from all 
control — they ceased to be men — they were demons, for they threw their 
■own dead and wounded, as th^ were mown down like grass by the cut- 






tn*§ mw, iadueriiiiiiiiitely down tiM hsIdiiM^v to get Omt of Umb. 

They naa etripped thenwelTefl ilmoflt nmked ; and i^thono^ they fought with 
the most desperate courage^ yelling and enraing, each in his own toogne, 
moat hideously, yet their ver3r naraben, pent up in a small vessel^ere 
' against them. At length, amidst the fire, smoke, and Mlish npioar, we 
could see that the deck nad become a very shambles ; and unless they soon 
.carried the cutter by boaiding, it was dear that the coolness and discipline 
of my own glorious service must prevail, even agiinst such feaifbl odds, 
the superior site of the vessel, neater number of guns, and heavier metal. 
The pirates seemed aware of this themselves, for they now made a despe- 
rate attempt forward to carry their antagonist l^y boarding, led on by the 
black captain. Just at this -moment, the cutter's main-boomfell across the 
schoonei^s deck, close to where we wete sheltering oorselves-from the shot 
tho best way we could ; and while the rush forward was being made, by a 
sodden impulse Splinter and I, followed by Peter asd the dog, (who with 
wonderful sa^^acity, seeing the oselessness of resistance, had cowered qui- 
etly by my side during the whole row,) scrambled along it as the cutter^s 
people were repelling me attack on her bow, and all four of us in oar haste 
]omped down on the poor Irishman at the wheeL 

'^Muhler, fire, rape, and robbery ! it is capsiaed, stove in, sunk, burned, 
and destroyed I am! Captain, Captain, we are carried aft here — Oeh, 
hubbaboo for Patrick Donnally !** 

There was no time to be lost ; if any of the crew came aft, we were dead 
men, so we tumbled down through the cabin skylight, men and beast, the 
hatch having been knocked off by a shot, and stowed ourselves away in the" 
side berths. The noise on deoL soon ceased—- the cannon were asain 
plied — gradually the fire slackened, and. we could hear that the pirate nad 
scraped clear and escaped. Some time after this, the lieutenant commanding 
the cutter came down. Poor Mr. Douglas I both Mr. Splinter and I knew 
him well. He sat down and covered his fiuse with his hands, while the 
blood oozed down between his fingers. He had received a cutlass wound 
on the head in the attack. His right arm was bound up with his neckcloth, 
and he was very pale. 

*' Steward, bring me a light. -*- Ask the doctor how. many are killed and 
wounded ; and, do you hear, tell>him to come to me when he has done 
forward, but not a moment sooner. To have been so mauled and duped 
by a cursed bocaner ; and my poor boat's crew-—* " 

Splinter groaned. He started, but at this moment the man returned 
again. 

'* Thiiteen killed, your honour, and fifteen wounded ; scarcely one of us 
untouched.*' The poor fellow's owniskull was bound around with a. bloody 
cloth. 

" Grod help me ! Qod help me ! but they have died the death of men. 
Who knows what death the poor fellows in the boat have died?" — Hers 
he was cut short by a tremendous scufSe on the ladder, down which an 
old quarter-master wasVundled neck and crop ii^ the cabin. *" How now> 
Jones?" 

" Please your honour," said the man, as soon as he had gathered hiinself 
tlp^ and had time to turn his ouid, and smooth down his hair; but again 
the uproar was renewed, ana Donnally was lugged in, scrambling and 
stru^^ling, between two seamen—- <* this here Irish chap, your honour, has 
lostbts wits, if 80 be he ever had any, your honour. He hassone mad 
through fright" . 

'* Fright be damned !" roared Donnally ; '< no man ever frightened me : 
but as his honour was skewering them bloody tlueves fbrwafd, I was 
boarded and carried afl by the devil, your honour — pooped by BeelKebuls 
by**— ," and he rapped his fist on the table u&tU every thing on it daaoed 



«0M omnraut'flr M«. 9B 

'tt^. ^Thare were ftrar tf dMnn, reer honoar-*** hif^k ixa^ and two 
bme ones — and a piebald one, with rour legs aad a buiAiy tail — each wilh 
two homs on hia head; for all the wofild like tboae on F^atiier M<?leai7*s 
lid cow — no, she waa hiraiMed — it was Father Clannachan's I nane —4 
ao, not his neither, for his was tha paiiak b«U ; fait, I don't know what I 
msne, except that the^ had aH homa on their headiy and vomited fire, ui4 
liad each of them- a tail at his stem, twisting and twining like a conger eel^ 
with a bine light at the end ont" 

^< And dat's a lie, if ever dere. was one," exclaimed Peten Mangrove, 
jQmpm^ from the berth. <* Look at me, you Irish tief, and tell me if i have 
Ik blue light or a cdneer eel at my stem ?" 

This was too miicn for poor Donnally. He yelled out, .** You'll believe 
ycmr own eyes now, yeer tioncnir, ^en jou see one o' dam bodilv before 
you ! Let me go — let me go !" aad,Tushmg up the ladder, ha would, in all 
probability, have ended his ^rthly career in the salt sea, had hia bullet 
A/ead ^ not' encountered the broadest part of the parser, who waain the act of 
<le8Cending,with such violence, that he shot him out df the companion seva- 
rttl feet above the deck, as if he had been discharaed from a colverin ; but 
the recoil sent poor Donnally, stunned and senadess, to the bottom <jr tiie 
ladder. There was no stanchng all tins ; we laughed outright, and made 
oorselves known to Mr. Douglui^ who received uscocdiallyi and in a week 
we were landed at Port Royid. 



CHAPtER VL 

THE Cq,ni8B OF THE SPARK. 

" Oars arf the tears, though few, sincerely shed." 

T«E CoasAia. 

The only other midshipmen on board the cutter beside youns Walcafan, 
whose miserable death wchad wit>i6esed, was a slight deheatefitde fellow, 
about fourteen years old, of the name of Duncan ; he was the smallest boy 
of his age I ever saw, and had been badly hurt in repelHng the attack of 
tile pirate. His wound was a lacerated puncture in the left shoulder fmn a 
boarding-pike, but it appesMd to be healing kindly, and for some days we 
thought he was doing well However, about five o'clock in the afternoon 
on which we made Jamaica, the surgeon accosted Mr.Dou^as as we were 
walking the deck together. 

** I fear little Duncan is going to slip throikgh my fingers after alL sir.'* 

« No ! - 1 Ihoifehf lie had been better.*' 

** So he was tiliabout noon, when a twitching of the muscles came oa, 
which I fear betokens lockjaw ; he wavers, too, now and th^, a bad sign 
of itseir where there is a fretting wtyund." 

We went bebw, where, notwithstan^ins the wind*sail that was let dowit 
close to where his hammock was slung, the heat of the small vessel was 
anfibcatin^. The large coarse tallow candle in the pn>8er'8 lantern, that 
hung beside his shoulder, around which tilie loathsome cockroaches fluttered 
like moths in a summer evening, filled the between decks with a mncid 
oify smell, and #ith smoke as from a torch, while it ran down and mdted 
like fat before a fire. It cast a dull sickly gleam on the pale face of Htm 
brown-haired,' girlish-looking lad, as he lay in his narrow hammock. When 
we entered, an old quarter-master was rubbins his legs, which were jerking 
about like the limbs of a galvanized frog, whue two of the boys held his 
ums, akso violently convuSed Th« poor littla. fellow^waa crying and soIhv 



bog iDOii pteonfy, batiBMfe a atroBg^BNl to coiniHiM hi^ 
mtn " whesk he saw na. 

** This is so good tiyoa, Mr. Ciingle ! yov will take chaige of my letter 
to my aster, I Jldow yoa will ? — L say, Ansoii,'' to the qnaiter-mastar, 
<<dolift nevp a little^ till I try and finish it— UwiUbe asore heart to 
poor Sarah ; she has no mother now, nor father, and aontis ncit over kind, 
•—and agua he wept bitleily. ''ConCiMmd this jomping hand, it won't 
keep steady, all I can do. — I say, Doctor, i shanl die this time, shall 1 2" 

<" I hope not, ray fine little fellow.*' 

*^ I don't thuik I shall ; I shall live to be a man yet, in spite of that 
bloody bacaniei's pike, I know I sfaalL?^ Grod help me^ the death lattle wa^ 
alreaav in his throat, and the flame was flickering in the socket ; even as 
he spoke, the moscles of tus neck stifiened to such a deereethat I thought 
he was clioked, bat the violence of the eonvulsioa quioily subsided. *< I 
am done for. Doctor!" he could no longer open hia mouth, but spoke 
through iiis flenohed teeth — *< I feel it now I — God Alrai^ty receive my 
soul, and protect my poor sister !" The aich enemy w,aa indeed advancing 
to the final strusgle, lor he now gave a sudden and shaip cry, and stretched 
out his lees andarms, which instantly became as rigid as marble, and in 
his a^onyne turned Ins face to the side I stood on, but be was no longer 
sensible. ''Sister," he said with difficulty *~*'dont let them throw ma 
overboard ; there are sbarkA here." 

** Land on the lee bow," — sung out the man at the mast-head. 

The common life sound would not have moved any of us in the routine 
of duty, but bursting in, under such circumstances, it made us all start, as if 
it had been sometbmg unusual ; the djring midshipman heard it, and said^ 
calmly — " Land, — I will never see it But how blue all your lips look.' 
It it cold, piercing cold, and dark, dark." Something seemed to. rise in hiB- 
throat, his features sharpened stili more, and he tried /to gasp, but his 
clenched teeth prevented him — he was gone. 

I went on deck with a heavy heart, and, on looking in the direction 
indicated, 1 beheld the towering Blue Mountain pedk rising high above the 
horiion, even at the distance of fifty milts, with its outline clesr and dis^ 
tinctasainst the splendid western. skv, now. gloriously illumibed by the 
light otthe set sun. We stood on under easy sail for the night, and next 
morning, when the day broke, we were ofi* the east end of the magnificent 
island of Jamaica. The stupendous peak now appeared to rise close 
aboard of us, with a large solitary stkr sparkUns on his forehead, and reared 
his forest-crowned summit 1»^ into the col<i'bUie sky, impending over u» 
in frowning magntficence, wbiW the lon^ daik range of the Blue Moun- 
tains, with their outlines hard and clear in the gray lieht, sloped away on 
each side of him as if the^ had been the giants shoui^Sb Great masses 
of white mist hung on their sides about half-way down, but ail-the valleys 
and coast as yet slept in the datknessv We could see that the. land-wind 
was blowing strong in shore, from the darker colour of the water, and the 
speed with which me coastera, only distinguishable by their white sails. 
Slid along ; while ast«m of us^ out at sea, yet within 'a cable's length, for 
we had scarcely shot beyond its influence, the prevailing trade-wind blew 
a smart breeze, eeming up strong to a defined line, beyond which, and be* 
t#een it and the influence of the land-wind, there was a belt of dull lead* 
coloured sea, about half a mile broad, with a long heavy ground-^well roU« 
inc. but smooth as glass, and without even a ripple on me surface, in the- 
midst of which we presentlv la^ dead becalmed. 

The heavy dew was shaken in large* diops out of the wet flapping sails^ 
against which the reef points pattered like hail as the vessel rolled. The 
decks were wet and slippery, and our jackets saturated with mmsture y but 
we enjoyed the luxuiy at oM to a degret that made the sea water^ when 



TtfH CBIir€HJB'l Loe. 81 

dashed about the decki, as they were being holystoned, appear absoliitely 
warm. Presently all natare awoke in its freshness so suddenly, that it 
looked like a change of scene in a theatre. The sun, as yet set to us, rase 
to the huge pe^ and glanced like lightning on, his summit, making it 
gleam like a ruby ; piesently the clouds on his sha^y ribs rolled ujpwards, 
enveloping lus liead and shoulders, and were replalced by the tmn blue 
mists which ascended from the valleys, forming a fleecy canopy, beneath 
which appeared hill and dale, woods and cultivated lands, where all had 
been undistin^uishabte a minute before,, and gushing streams burst from 
the mocmtain sides like goiits ef froth, maiking their course in the level 
grounds by the vapours they sent up. Then breeze-niill towers burst into 
ught, and cattle-mills, wifli their cone-shaped roofs, and overseers' houses, 
and water-mills, with the white spray falling from the wheels, and su^- 
works, with long pennants of white smoke streaming from the boiling- 
house chimneys seaward in the mominv wind. Immeoaately after, gangs 
of- negroes were seen at work ; .loaded wagons, with enormous teams of 
fourteen to twenty oxen dragging Ifaem, rolled along the roads ; long strings 
of mules loaded with canes were threading the fields ; 'drogging vessds 
were seen to shove out from every^ cove ; tte monung song of the black 
fishermen was heard, while'lheir tiny canoes, like black specks, started up 
suddtoly on all sides of us, as if they had floated from the bottom of the 
sea ; and the smiling scene burst at once, and as if by mag^c, on us, in all 
its eoolness and beauty, under the cheering influence of the rapidly rising 
sun. We fired a ^un, and made the signal for a pilot ; upon which a canoe, 
with three negroes in i^ shoved off from a small schooner lying to about a 
mile to leeward. Tl^ey were soon alongside, when one of the three jumped 
en board. This was the pilot, a slave, as I knew ; and I remember the time, 
%hen, in my innocence, f would have expected to see something very 
8()ualid and miserable, but'thero was nothing of the kind ; for I never in 
my life saw a riaore spruce salt-water dandy, in a small way. He was well 
dressed, according to a seaman's -notion — clean white trousers, check 
shirt, with white lapels, neatly fastened at the throat with a black ribboo, 
smart straw hat ; and altogether he carried an appearance of comfort — I 
was going to write independence — about him, that! was by no means 
prepared for. He moved about with a swaggexing roll, grinning and 
laughing with the seamen. 

<* I say, blaekie,*' said Mr. Douglas. 

" John Ledge^ massa, if you please, iHassa ; blaekie is Hot politefhl, sir ;'' 
whereupon he showed his white teeth again. 

** Well, w^, John ^odge, you are running us in too close, surely ;" and 
the remark seemed seasonable enough to a stranger, for the rocks on the 
bold shore were now within half pistol-shot. 

** Mind yom eye," shouted old Anson. ** You will have us ashore, you 
black rascal ."» 

** You, sir, what water have you here ?'' sung out Mr. Splinter. 

'* Salt water, massa,*' rapped out Lodge, fainy dumbfounded by such a 
volley of questicMIs -^ '^ You hah mx fadom good here, massa ^" but sns* 
peeting he had gone too far — << I take de Tonnant, big ship as him is, close 
lo dat reef, sir, you might have jump ashore, so you neea not frighten for 
▼our leetle dish of a hooker ; beside, massa, my character is at take, you 
Know " -^ then another grin and bow.- 

There was no use in being>angry with the poor fellowj«o he was allowed 
to have his own way until we anchored in tTO evening at Port Royal. 

The morning after we arrived, 1 went ashore with a boat's crew to per-, 
form the magnanimous operation of cutting brooms ;' we puUed ashore foir 
Green Bay, under the guns of Uie Twelve Apostles — a heavy battery of 
twelve cannon, where there is a tombstone, with an inscription, settingforth 



88 TOM CUMOdl'f J^O. 



fittt diB paiiy over whom it was eracCady had be«a actnally swaJlaired np 
IB the gnat evthquake tfaatdestroyed tfe«ppoate town, but sobBequenUy 
d&Mni^pBd agun; beinc, parebaace, an miMenly bboimL 

W e an'i'Mehed tbe1«acfa -- '^ Cbre » ~ the men laid t)^ 

*< WMt sort ofnata be them, Peter Coaminga ?" said the coxswain to a 
new band who had been lately imprepeed, and wae new standing at the 
bow raady to fend o£ 

Peter brake c^one of the branches fiNnn the bosh ncauBst him. 

** Snute my timbera, do the trees hen bear shellfish V 

The tide in the. Oulf c/f Menco does sot ebb and flow above tWb feef^ 
except at the springs, and the ends of the drooping bmnehes of the pum- 
grore-trees, that hoe cover the sboiey are clustered, withhi the w^Uih of the 
water, with a small weil-flavonred oyster. The first thing the seamen did 
when they cotashore, was to fasten an oaknm tail-to the rump of one of 
the most (ubbeily of the cotter's crew ; they then gave him ten yards' law, 
when they etaited in chase, shouting among thebiwhes, and switching ead& 
other like the veriest schoolboys. I bad walked some distance along the 
beadi, pelting the amtrfnbioos little creatures, inif crab, half lobster, called 
soldiers, whi^ kept shouldering their large daws, and running out and in 
their httle burrows, as the smul ripple twinkled on the sand m the rising 
sun,' when two men-of-wa^' boats, each with three officers in the stem^ 
suddenly pulled round a little promontory that intercepted my view ahead. 
Being somewhat out of the line of my duty, so far fimn ray beat, I squatted 
among the brush-wood, thinking they would pe^ by ; but, as the devil 
would have it, they pidled directly for the place where I was ensconced, 
beached their boats, snd jumjped on shore. << Here's a mess," thought I. 

I soon made out that one ot the ofiiceis was Captain Pinkem of the Flashy 
and that the parties saluted each other with that etem eenrtesy which auf- 
guiednogood. 

<* So, so, my masters, not enough of fighting on the coast of America, 
but you must have a little private defacing oTCkxl^s image among your- 
selves?" 

Pinkem spoke first << Mr. Clinch," (I now knew he addressed the &8t 
lieutenant of the flag-ship,) *- ** Mr. Clinch, it is not too late to prevent uik- 
pleasant consequences ; I ask you again, at the eleventh hour, will you 
make an apology ?" 

He seemed hurried and fidgetty in bis maqner ; which rather surprised 
moj as I knew he was a seasoned- hand in these matters, and it contmsted 
unfavourably with the calm bearing of his antagonist, who by this time had 
thrown his hat on the ^ound, and stood with one foot on the handkerohief 
that marked his position, the distance, twelve paces, having already been 
measured. By the by, his position was deuoemy near in a line with the 
gray stone behind which I lay perdu ; nevertheless, die liak I ran did not 
prevent me noticing that he was veiy pale, and had muchtheair of a brave 
man come to die in a bad cause. He looked upwards for a second or two, 
and then answered, slowly and distinctly, " Captain Pinkem, I now repeat 
what I said before ; this rencontre is none of my seeking. You accuse me 
of having spoken slightingly of you seven years ago, wheni was a mere 
boy. You nave the evidence of a gallant officer that I did so; therefore I 
may not gainsay it ; but of uttering the words imputed to me, I dedare, 
upon my honour, I have no recollection." He paused* 

" That won't do, my fine fellow," said Pinkem. 

" You are unreasonable," rejoined Clinch, in -ihe same measmred l»ne, 
** to expect farther trnimde for uttering words which I have no conviction ot 
having spokeh ; yet to any other officer in the service I would not hesitate 
to make a more direct apology, but you know your credit as a ptstol-shet 
Tenders this impossiUe." 



YOM CftlHGLfi's LOO. 9$ 

•* Sorry for it, Mr. Clinch, sorry for if* 

Here the pistols were handed to the principals by their respectiTe seconds. 
In their attitudes, the proficient and the novice were strikingly contrasted ; 
^by this time l had- crept round so as to have a view of both parties, or 
rather, if the truth must be told, ttr be out of the line of fire.) iHnkem 
stood with his side accurately turned towards his antagonist, so as to pre- 
sent the smallest possible surface ; his head was, a^ it struck me, painfully 
slewed round, with his eye looking steadily tH Clinch, over his rignt shoul- 
der, whilst* his arm was bi^u^ht down close to his thigh, with the cock of 
th^ pistoHumed outwards, so that his weapon must have covered his oppo- 
nent by the ample raising of his arm below the elbow. Clinch, on the 
other Intnd, stood froritin;^ him, with the whole breadth of his chest ; hold- 
ing his weapon awkwardly across his body, with both hands. Pinkem ap- 
peared unwilling to take him at suqh advantage, for, although violent and 
headstrong, and but>too frequently the slave oi nis passions, he had some 
noble traits^ in his character. 

^ Turn your feather ed^ to me, Mr. Clinch ; tAke a fair chan<ie, man." 

The lieutenant bowed, and I thought would have spokeq, but he was 
checked by the dread of being thought to f^ar ["however, he took the ad* 
vice, and in an instant (he word was given — *« Are you both ready V* 

«Yes.« 

"Then fire." 

Clinch fired ^thout defibemtloiis ' I niw him, for my eyes were fixed on 
him, expecting to see hiip fall. He stood firm, however, which vras more 
than I did, as at the instant, a" piece of the bullion of an epaulet; at 'first 
taken for a pellet of baser metal, struck me sharply on the nose, and shook 
my equanimity confoundedly.; ai length I turned to look at Pinkem, and 
there he stood with his arm raised, and pistol levelled, but he had not fired. 
He stood thus whilst I might have counted ten, like a finger-post, then 
dropping his hand, his weapon went ofi^ but without aim, the ballet Eftrikins 
the sand near his feet, apd down he came headlong to the ground. He feU 
with his face turned towards me, and I never shall forget tihe horrible ex- 
pression of it. His healthy complexion had given place to a deadly blue, 
the eyes were wide open and straining in their socRets, the upper lip was 
drawn up, showing his teeth in a most frightful grin, the blood gushed from 
his mouth as if impelled by thi6 strokes oi a forc<$ pump, while his hands 
griped and dug into the sand. 

Befijre the sun set he was a dead man. 

" A neat momingli work, gentlemen,'* thought I, 

The two surgeons came up, opened his dress, feh his pulse, and shook 
their heads ; the boat's' crews -grouped around them — he was lifted into 
his gig, the word was given to shove off, and — ^ returned to my broom- 
cutters. 

When we got on board, the guntter who had the watch was taking his 
fisherman^s walk on the starboard side of the quarter-deck, and kept look- 
ing steadily at thj^ land, as if to avoid seeing poor little Duncan's coffin, that 
lay on a mxing near the gangway. The crew, assisted by thirty men from 
the flag-ship, were employed m twenty different-waysi repairing damages, 
arid were bustling about, laughing, joking, and singing, with small' regard 
to (he melancholy object before their eyes, when Mr. Douglas put his head 
np the ladder ^- " Now, Jackson, if you please." 

"Mle old fellow's countenance fell as if nis heart was wrung by ll» order 
he Jhad to give. 

" Aloft mere ! lie out, you Perkins, and reeve a whip on the starboard 
yard-arm to lowef Mr. " The rest stuck In his throat, but, as if asham- 
ed of his soft-heartedness^ he threw as much gruflTness as he could into his 
voice as he sung out — '* Beat^ quarten there ! — knock ofl^ men !' 

6* 



$i tOU CKUraX^'s LOO. 

The roll of the drum* stayed the coafucdoa and noise of the peoi^ at 
work in an instant, who iauoediatelY jnuiged themselves, in tli^ir dean 
firocks ai)d trousens on each side ot the quarter-deck. At a given sig- 
nal, the white deal coffin, wrapped in its befitting pall, the meteor flag ef 
England, swung hidi al^Te the hammock nettings between us and the 
bright blue sky, to uie long clear note of the boatswain^s whistle, which 
9oon endin^.in a short chirrup, told that it now rested on the thwarts of tbe 
boat alongside. . We pulled ashore, and it was a sight perchance to move a 
woman, to see the poor little' fellow's hat and bit of a dirk lying on his co& 
fin,' whilst the body was carried by four ship boys, the eldest scarcely four- 
teen, I noticed the tears stand in Anson's eyes as the coffin was lowered 
intorthe grave, — • the boy bad been woun4ed close to him, — and when we 
heard the hollow rattle of tbe ea^rth on the coffin, — an unusual souod to a 
sailor, — he shuddered. 

'* Yes, Master Cringle," he said, in a whisper, " he was as kind-hearted, 
and as brave a lad as ever trod on shoe leatner, — none' of the larkinfa «f 
the men in the clear moonlight nights ev)er readied the «abin through nim, 
— nor was he the boy to xouse the wat^h from uifder the lee of the boats in 
bad weather, to curry with the lieutAiant, while he knc wthe look-outs were 
as bright as beagles — and where was th^ man in our ^atch that wanted 
'baccy while Mr. Duncan had a shiner left ?" The poor fellow dr^w the 
back of his horny hand across his eyes, and grumbled out, as he tamed 
away, *f And here am I, Bill Anson, such a swm> as to be ashamed ofbeing 
sonr for him.*' 

We were now turned over into the receiving ship the old Shark, andior* 
tunately there were 'captains enough in port to try us for the loss of the 
Torch, so we get over our court-martial speeoily, and the very day I ^ot 
back my dirk, £e packet brought me out a lieutenant's commission. Beincr 
now my own master for a-season, I determined to visit some relation^ I had 
in the island, to whom I had never yet been introduced ; so I shook hands 
vnth old Splinter, packed my ki^, and went to the wharf to charter a wherry 
to carry me up to Kingston. The moment my object was jpercaived by tne 
black boatmen, I was surrounded by 9. mob of them, pulling and haulms 
each other, and shouting forth the various qualifications of their boats, witE 
such vehemence, that I was nearly deafened^ 

" Massa, no see Pam U Civil, sail like a witch, tack like a dolphin ?" 
'* Don't believe him, nassa ; BaUahoo is de boat dat can beat him." 
'*Dara lie dat, as I am a gentleman !" roared a ragged black vagabond. 
'* Come in de J\tonkey, massa ; no flying fis cao^b^tj^she." 
" Don't boder de gentleman," yelled a forth, — "tiiasssi. lovQ de Stanij>' 
andrgo — no so, massa ?" as he saw me make a step in the direction oi am 
boat, . " Oh yes — so g^ out of de way, you black rascals," -^ the fellow 
was as black as a sloe himself — '^ make room for man-of-war buccra ; him 
leetle just now, but will be admiral one d^y." 

So saying, the fellow who had thus appropriated me, without more ado, 
levelled his head like a battering, ram, and began to batter in breach all who 
stood in his way.. He first ran a tilt ag^nst Pom be CivHf ^d shot him 
like a rottket into the sea ; the Monkey fared no better ; the Ballahoo had to 
swim for it ; and having thus opened a way by main force, I at length got 
safely moored in the stem sheets ; but just as we were shoving ofl^ Mr« 
Callaloo, the clergyman of Port Royal, a tall yellow personage, begged for 
a passage, and was aceocdingly taken on board. As it was high wateii my 
boatmen chose the five foot channel, as the boat channel near to Gallows 
f oint is called, by whieh a loafi stretch would be saved, and we were crack* «> 
lag on ^eer^y, nay mind fulTo^ miy recent promotion, when scur, scur, 
scar, we' stuck fast on the bamk* Our black boatmen, being little enciim-* 
^'^'ed with clothesy jumped ovevboaid ia ajBoyejrlike ^o many wild-ducks* 



^ tti they dropped into the water, «* We must all ^t oot, — we must 

•H get out ;^' whereupon Mr. CaUak>o, a sort of Dominie Sampson in itb 

-wajy promptly leapea'overboard up to his waist in the water. Tiie negroes 

were thunaerstruck. 

** Massa Parson Oallaloo,.you mad surely, you mad !" 

** Children , I am not mad, but obedient — you said we must all get out — " 

" To be sure, massa, and you no see we dl did get out ?'» 

<* And did you not see that 1 got out too?'' rejoined the parson, still in 

tke water, and somewhat nettled. 

''Oh Itid, massa! we no mean you — we meant poor nigger, not white 

man, parson." 
'< You said all, children, aad thereupon I leaped,** pronouncing the last 

word m two syllabtes-— *' be more correct in your grammar next time.** 
The worthy but eccentric old chap then scrambled on board again, amidst 

the auppresaed lau^ter of the boatmen, sad kept his seat, wet clothes and 

aU, ui^ we leadiM Kingston. 



CpAPTER VIL 

SCSNIfeS IK JAMAICA* 

** Sseeltont— why this hr the beet foollog when all is done.** 

TWBLPlKr NWHT. 

I coMVBSs that I did not pnomise myself much pleasure from my cruisG 
ashore ; somehow or other I had made up my mind to believe, that in Ja- 
maica, ^nittingjudde the magnificence and natural beauty of the face of the 
country, th^ was little to interest me. I had pictured to myself the slaves 
— a miserable, squalid, half-fed, iU-dothed, over-worked race — and their 
masters^ "and the white inhabitants generally, as an unwholesome-looking 
ee&w of saffiroRNfibeeti tyrants, who wore straw hats with umbrella brims, 
wide trousers, and calico jadcets, livil^'On pepper-pot and land-crabs, and 
drinking sanearee and smoking cigars the whole day ; in a word, that all 
that Bryan fiawaids and others had written regardins the civilization of the 
West ladies was a feblci But I was agreeably unoeceived ; for although 
I did meet with some eatraoidinary characters, and witnessed not a few rum 
scenes, yet, on the whole, I gratefully bear witness to the great hospitality 
oi the inhabitants, both in the towns and in the country. In Kingston the 
society was exceedingly good, as good,^ I can freely affirm, as I ever met 
with in any provincial town anywhere ;> and there prevailed a warmth of 
heart, and a kindliness both in the males and females of those ftimilies 
to which i had the good lertune to be introduced, that I never experienced 
oui of Jamaica. 

At the period I am describing, the islaikl was in the hey-day of its pros- 
perity, and the harbour of Kinsston was full of shippings I had never be* 
fore seen so saperb a meroanule hav^n ; it is completely land-locked, and 
the whole navy of EngUuid migfait ride in it commodiously. 

On the sea face it is almost impregnable, for it would be Htfle short of a 
miracle for an invading squadron to wind its way through the labyrinth of 
shoals and reefs lying off the mouth of it, among which the channels are 
eirnairow and intricate, that at thiee or four points the sinking of a»sand 
barge would effectually block up all ingress ; hot, independently of this, 
the eatranee at Port Royal is defended by very stftmg works, the guns 
ranging the whole way across, while, a little farther on, the attacking ships _ , 



86 TOM CBUrftLs's LOO. 

would be exposed to a cross fire from the heavy metal of the Apoetlei* 
Battery ; and even assuming all these obstacles to be overcome, and tin 
passage into the harbour forced, before they conld pass the narrows to get 
up to the anchorage at Kingston, they would be blown out of the water by 
a raking fire from sixty pieces of large cannon on Fort Augusta, which is 
so situated that they would have to turn to windward for-at least half an 
hour, in a strait which, at the widest, would not allow them to reach beyond 
musket'shot of the walls. Fortunately, as yet Mr. Canning had not ctdled 
his New World into existence, and the vi^iole of the trade of Terra Firma, 
&om Porto Cavello down to Chagres, the greater part of the trade of the 
islands of Cuba and San Domingo^ and even that of Luna and San 
Bias, and the other ports of the Pacific, earned on across the Isthmus of 
Darien, centred in Kingston, the usual supplies through Cadiz being stopped 
by the advance of the French in the Peninsula* ' The result of this princely 
traffic, more magnificent than that of Tyre, was a stream of ffAd and silver 
flowing into the Bank of England, to the extmit of three myGonaof-potrnds 
sterling annually, in return for British manufactures ; thus supplying the 
sinews of war to the government at home, and, besides the advantage of so 
large a mart, employing an immense amount of British tonnage, and many 
thousand seamen, and in numberless ways opening up new outlets to Brit- 
ish enterprise and capital. AlaS I alas { where is ul this now ? The echo 
of the empty stores might answer *' where !". 

On arriving at Kingston, my first object was to seek out Mr. *** ^ the ad- 
miralfs agent, and one of the most extensive merchants in the place, in order 
to deliver some letteis to him, and get his advice aa to my future proceed- 
ings* Mn CailalOo undertook to be my pilot, striding along abeam of me, 
aira leaving in his wake two serpentine clottings on £e pavement, from the 
droppings of the water from the voluminous ooatpskirts, whidi had been 
thoroughly soaked by his^ recent ducking. 

£lvery thing appeared to. be thriving, and as we passed along, the hot sandy 
streets were crowded with drays conveying goods fipom the wharves to the 
stores, and from the stores to the Spanish Posadas. The merchants of the 
place, active, sharp-looking men, were seen grouped UDder the piazzas in 
earnest conversation with thar Spanish customeia, or peidied otx the top of 
the bales and boxes just landed, waiting to hook the ^ngham-coated, Mooiv 
ish-looking Dons, as they came along with ci^rs in their mouths, and a 
train of negro servants following them with me, buckets oh their heads, 
filled with pesos fuertes. The appearance of the town itself Mvas novel and 
pleasing ; the houses, chiefly ot two stories, lookeyi as if they had been 
built of cards, most of them being surrounded with piazzas from ten to four- 
teen feet wide, gayly painted green and white, and formed by the roofs pro- 
jecting beyond the bnck walls or shells 4>f the houses. On the ground-noor 
these piazzas are open, and in the lower part of the town, where the. houses 
are l>uilt contiguous to each other) they fdrm a covered way, aiK>rding a 
most grateful shelter froih'the sun, on each side of the streets, which last 
are unpaved, and more like dry river-courses than thoroughfares in a Chris- 
tian town. On the floor above, the balconies are shut in with^a sort of 
movable blinds, called " jalousies," like large-bladed Venetian blinds, fixed 
in frames, with here and there a glazed sash to admit hg^t in bad weather 
when the blinds are closed. In £e upper part of the town the efl[fect is very 
beautiful, every house staiAJing detached from its neighbour, in its little gar- 
den filled with vines, fruit-trees, stately palms, and cocoa-nut trees, with a ' 
court of negro houses and offices behind, and a patriarchal-looking draw- 
well i^ the centre, generally overshadowed by a magnifieent wild tamarindl 
When I arrived At the great merchant's place of business, I was shown 
into a lofty cool room, with a range of desks along the walls, where a dozen 



TOM GRIHOLJB's LOO. 87 

derks were quill-driving In the centre sat my man, a smftll sallow, yet 
perfectly genUemanlike personage. 

*< Dat is ma^sa," quota my J^lack usher. 

I accordingly walked up to him, and presented my letter. He uevtr 
lifled his head from his paper, which I had half a mind to resent ; but at 
the moment there was a bustle in the piazza, and a group of naval officers, 
amons whom was the admiral, came m. My silent friend was now alert 
enoimh, and profuse of his bows and smiles. 

** Who have we here ? Who is that boy, L ?'* said the admiral to hie 

secretary. 

^ Toung Cringle, sir ; the only one except Mr. Splinter saved from the 
Torch ; he was wst on the admiralty list t'other da;.^' ( 

i* What, th^ ad "V^illoushby spoke so well of?*' 

'' The same, sir ; he got ms promotion by last packet^' 

" I know, I know* I e&y> Mr* Cringle, you are appointed to the Fire- 
brand, do you know that?" — I did not know it, and began to fear my 
cruise on shore was all up. — *< But I don't look for her from Havana for a 
month ; so leave your address with L , that you may get the. order to 
join when she does come." 

It appeared that I had seen the worst i^ the agent, for he gave me a very 
kind invitation to stay some days with him, and drove me home in bis keto- 
reen, a sqrt of open sedan chair with the front and sides knocked out, and 
mounted on a gig body. ^ 

Before dinner we were lounging about the piazza, and lookins down into 
the street, when a negro funeral came post, preceded by asouadof drunken 
black vagabonds, sinmng and playing on gumbies, or African drums, 
made out of pieces of nollow trees, about six feet long, with skins braced 
over them, each carried by one man, while another beats it with his open 
hands. The coffin was borne along on the heads of two n^roes — *• a negro 
carries every thin§ on his head, from a bale of goods to a wine-glass or te^ 
cup. It is a practice for the bearers, when they come near the house of any 
one against whom the deceased was supposed to have had a grudge, to 
pretend that the coffin will not pass by, and iathe present ca^e, when they 
came opposite to where we stood, they began to wheel round and round, 
and to stagger under their load, while the choristers shouted at the top of 
their lungs. 

<< We beg you, snipmate, for come along — -do, broder, come away;" 
then another reeL ** What, you no wantee go in a hole, eh? You hab 
grudge 'gainst somebody lif here, eh?" — Another devil of a lurch— » 
" Massa * * * 's housekeeper, eh ?^ Ah, it must be !>' — A tremendous stag- 
ger — ** Oh, Massa ** *, dollar for drink ; someting to hold play [negro 
wak.e] in Spring-path, [the negro burying-ground;] l^diaccosay htm won't 
pass 'les^ you give it." And here they began to spin round more violently 
than before ; but at the instant iv drove of bullocks coming along, they got 
entanped amons them, and down vrent body and bearers and all, the comn 
bursting in tl)e tall, and the dead corpse, with its white ^rave-clothes and 
black face,^ rolling over and oyer in the sand among thefeet of' the cattle. 
It was immediatmy caught up, however, bundled into the coffin again, and 
away they staggered, drumming and singing aa loudly as before. 

The party at dinner was a larse one ; everything in good s^le, wines 
superb, turjtle, &c., magniQcent,and the company ezce^ngly coaopanionahle. 
A Mr. Francia Fyall,(a great planting attorney, that is, an agent for. a 
number of proprietors of estates, who preferred living in England, and pay- 
ing a commission to him for managing in Jamaica, to facmg the climate 
themselves, ) to whom I had an introduction, rather posed me, by adcin« 
me, during dinner, if I would take any thing in the Imig way with him, whi<£ 
he explained by saying he would be glad to take a ^asa of email beer 



88 TOM CBOieLS's IdOG. 

with me. This, after a deluge of madeim, ehampagne, and all manner ci 
hffA wioes, was rather trying ; bat I kept vaj countenance as well as I 
couid. One thing 1 remember struck me as remarkable ; just as we were 
Miig to go to the dnwin^room, a cloud of wiaijged ants burst in upon us 
timwgh the open windows, and had it not been for the glass shades would 
have extingoiafaed the candles ; but when they iiad once settled- on the 
tables, they deliberately wrigj^ed themselTes free of their wings, as one 
would cast off a great-coat, and crept away in their simple and more hum- 
ble capai»ty of creeping tfungs. 

Next dar I went to wait on my relation, Mrs. Palma. I had had a con- 
foundedly hot walk tiirough the burning sandy streets, and Was neatly 
blinded by the reflection from them, aa I asoended the front stairs. There 
are no carpets in the houses in Jamaica ; bat the floors, which are often of 
mahogany, are beantifnlly pohshed, and sbine like a well-kept dinner-table. 
They are, of coarse, very slippery, and reooire wary walking till one gets 
accostomed to them. The roomft are made -exceedingly dan. during the 
heat of the day, according to the prevailing practice in ul ardent climates. 
A black footman, very handsomely d re ss e d, all to his bare legs, (I thought 
fit first he had black silk stockings on,) preeeded mej and when he reached 
the drawing-room door, asked my name. I told him, ''Mr. Cringle,'' — 
whereupon he sung out, to my dismay *- '* Mwsa Captain Ringtail to wait 
pan misses.'* 

This put me out a leelle — especially as I heard some one say — <* Cap- 
tain who — what a very odd name ?" 

Bat I had no time for reflection, as I had not blundered three' steps out , 
of the glare of the piazza, into the palpable obscure of theilaikened draw- ' 
ing-room, black as ni^t from the contrast, when I capsbsed headlong ovdr 
an ottoman in the middle or the apartment, and floundered right into the 
centre of a group of young ladies, and one or two lapd<^, by whom it 
was conjointly occupied. Tr3ans to recover mvsdf,! slipped oi) the glass- 
like floor, ana came down stem foremostj and being now regularly at the 
slack end, for I cotdd not well set lower, I sat stUl, scratching my ciput in 
the midst of a gay company <h mormns visitere, enjoying the 'gratifying 
consciousness that I was distinctly visiUe to them, although my daxsled 
optics could a's yet distinguish notning. Taadd to my pleasurable sensa- 
tions, I now perceived, from the coldness of the floor, that in the catastro- 
phe of my downfall my unmentionables had been grievously rent, but I had 
nothing ror it, but sitting patiently still amidat the si^pressed laughter of 
the company, until I became accustomed to the twilight, and they, like 
bright stars, began to dawn on fl|gr bewildered senses in all their loveliness, 
and prodigiously handsome women some of them were, for the Creoles, 
so far as figure is concerned, are generally perfect, while beautiful features 
are not wanting, and my travel had reconciled me to the absence of the 
rose from their cheeks.^ My eldest cousin Mary (Where is there a^pame 
like Mary?) now approacped ; ' she and I were old friends, and imnya 
junketting we used to have in my father's house during the holydays, when 
she was a hoarding-school girl m England. IVty baraihood and self-pos- 
session returned, under the double gratification of seeing her, and the 
certainty that my blushes (for my che^s were glowing like hot iron) could 
not have been observed in the subdued green light that pervaded the room. 

'* Well, Tom, since you are no longer dazzlcn, and see us all now, you 
had better get up, hadn't you — you see mamma is waiting there to embrace 
you?" 

*< Why, I think myself 1 had better ; but when I bioached-to so sud- 
denly, I split my lower canvass, Mary, and I cannot budge until your mo- 
ther lends me a petticoat" 

** A what ? you are cnuEy, Tom -— ** 



TOM CftUGLl'S X^OO. 89 



" Kola wfait, not a whit^ why I liave 8pUt mr — ahem. This 10 
piain, anUit?» - 

Away tripped the sylph-like girl, and ia a twinkling reappeaied with 
the desired mrment, .wmch in .a convulsion of laushter she supped over 
my h^d as I sat on the floor ; and having fastened it propeijy round n^ 
waist,'! rose and paid my respects to my warm-heartod relations. But 
that petticoat — it .could not have been the old woman's, there could have 
tfeen no such virtue in an eld woman's petticoat ; no, no, it must either 
have be^n a charmed garment, (ur — or — Mary's own ; £(>r fiom that hour 
I waa^ lost man, and the devoted slave of her large black eyes, and hi^h 
pale ibrehead. '* Oh, murder — you speak of the sun daaaling ,* what is 
It to the lustre of that same eye of yours, Mary !" 

In^tbe evening I escorted the ladies to a ball, (by the way, a West India 
ball-room b^ng a perfect lantern, open to the four inmoB of heaven, is 
cooler, notwithstanding the cUmate, than a ball-room anywhere eUe^) and 
a very gay affiiir it turned out to be, although I had more treubls in getting 
admittance than 1 bargained for, and was witness to as comieal a row 
(considering the very frivdlou» origin of it, and the quality of the parties 
engaged in it) as ever took place even in tbat peppery country, where, l 
verily believe, the temp^ of the people, generous though it be in the main, 
is'hoiter than the climate, and that, God knows ! ii sudoriferous enough* 
I was walking through fha entrance saloon with my fair cousin on mv 
ann, stepping out like a kei^ to the opening crash of a fine military bandy 
towards the entrance of the splendid ball-room filled with elegant com« 
pany, brilliantly lighted op ana ornamented with the nios^ rare and beauti* 
ful shrubs and flowers, which no European conservatory could have fur- 
nished forth, and arched overhead with palm branches and a profusion of 
evergreens, while the polished floor, tike one vast mirror, lefiected the fine 
forms of the pale but lovely black^eved and black-haired West Indian 
damoA, slancing amidst the more sombre dresses of their partners, while 
the whole group was relieved by being here and there spaneled with a rich 
naval or miliary uniform. Aa wo appmached, a constable put his staff 
across, the doorway. . 
' **Beg pardon, sir, but yon are not in full dress.". 

Now this was the first night wheroon I had sported my Ueutenant*s uni^ 
form, and with my- gold swab on my shoulder, the sparkling bullion 
^ancing in the comer of my eye at the very moment, my dress-sword by 
my side, gold buckles in my noes, and spotless white trousers, I had, in 
my innocence, considered myself a deuced killing fellow, and felt propoi^ 
tbnably mortified at this address. 

^ No one can be admitted in trousers, sir," said the man. 

'^Shiver my timbers i" I could not help the exdamation, the transao* 
tions of the morning crowding on my recollection ; *< shiver my timbers I 
18 my fate in thi^ strange country to be fqr ever irrevocably bound up in a 
pair o^breecheo 7" 

My oouaia pinched my arm. ^ ^ Hush, Tom ;• go home/ and get mam- 
nia*» petticoat" 

The man was peremptory { and as there was no use in getting into a 
squabble about such a trifle, I handed my partner over to the care of a 
gentleman of the party, who was fortunately accoutred according to rale, 
and, stepping to my quarters, I equipped myself in a pair of tight nether 
integuments, and returned to the ball-room. By this time there was the 
devttto pay; the entmnce saloon was crowded with miUtaryand naval 
men, high m oath, and headed by no less a persomthan a general officer 
and a one-armed man, one of the chief civil officers in the mace, and who 
bad been a Mulor in his youth. I was just in time. to see the advance of 
the combined column to tho door of«the ball-room, through' which they 



90 worn cEiirout's Loa« 

drane Ihe pidLet of comCables like chaff, and then lialted. The (me-anned 
functionaiy, a most powerful and very handsome man, now detached him* 
aelf fimn the phaJanx, and strode up to the advanced guard of •towards 
Mastered in front of the ladies, who had shrank together into a comer of 
the room, like so many frightened hares. 

The place being now patentee me, I walked up to comfort iny party, 
and coiiid see all that passed. The champion of the excluded had taken 
the precaution to roU up (he legs of his trousers, and to tie thett tightly at 
the knee with his garters, which gave him the appearance of a Dnleh skip- 
per ; and in all the consciousness of %eing now properly arrayed, he walked 
up to one of the men in authority — a small pot-bellied genueinan, and aeC 
himself to intercede for the attacking column, the headof which was stffl 
lowegng at the deorr But the little steward speedily interrupted him. 

'' Why, Mr^ Singlefist, rules must be maintained, and let -me. see,'*—- 
here he peered through his glass at the substantial supporters of o«r fiiiifd, 
— « as 1 Uve, you yourself are inadmissible.'* 

The giant laughed. 

<« Damn the body, he must have been a bailor ! «*- Charge, my fine felp* 
lows, and throw the ooostahles out of die window, and tlM stewards after 
them. Every man his bird ; and here goes for my Cock Robin." With 
that he made a grab at his Lilliputian .antagonist, but missed him,- ss he 
•lid away among the women like an eel, white hi; pursuer, brandiahing 
lus wooden arm on high, to which I now perotived, for the 6rst time, *that 
there was a large steel book appended, exclainied in a broad Scotch accent, 
^ Ah, if I had but caught the ereatyrtj I woidd have clapped tbaa in his 
mouth, and played him like a salmon.*' ^ 

At this signal, in poured die mass of Soldiers and sailors ; the constables 
vasished in an ivstant ; the stewards were diiven back upon the ladies ; 
and such fitinting and screaming, and sweahng and threatening, and shy- 
ing of cards, and filling of time and place for a cool turn in the morning, it 
Ind never been my good fortune to witness befoce or since.. My wig ! 
thought I, a precious country, where »inan's life may be perilled hy me 
fashion of the covering to his nakedness ! 

Next day, Mr. FyaH, who, I afterwards learned, was a most estSlfeiable 
man in substantials, although somewhat eccentric in small matters, called 
and invited me to accompany him on a cruise among some of the estates 
under his management This was the veiy thing i desired, and three 
days afterwards fleft my kind fiends in Kingeton, and set forth on my 
vi^t to Mr. Fyall, virho lived about seven miles from toWn. 

The morning was fine as usual, although about noon the clouds, thin and 
fleecy and transparent at first, but gradually settling down more dense and 
heavy, began to congre^te on the summit of the Liguanea Motmtains, 
which rise about four miles distant, to a heisht of near 5000 feet,- in rear of 
the town. It thundered too a little now and then in the same direction^ but 
this was an eveiy-day occurrence in JamaicSv^at this season, and a|p Ihad 
only seven miles to go, off I istarted in a gig of miise host's,' with my port- 
manteau well secnred under a tarpawlin, in defiance of sll thi«atening 
appearances, crowding sail, and urging the nobl^ roan that h^d me in tow 
ei^ee upon thirteen knots. 1 had' not gone above three miles, however, 
when tM sky in a moment changed from the intense glare of a tropical 
moontide. to the deepest gloom, as if a bad angel bad suddenly over- 
shadowed us, and interposed his' dark wings between us and the btessed 
•un ; indeed, so instantaneous was the effect, that it reminded me ofthd 
Withdrawing of the foot-lights in>a theatre. The road now wound round 
the base of a precipitous spur from the Liguanea Mountains, whi<^, instead 
of melting into the level country by gradual decreasing undulations, shot 
boldly out nearly a mile from the main lange,^ and so abraplily, that it 



TOM OBOrOU't UMk tl 

•eemed nioitttwd into the plain, like m nigged iMomontoiy ranning into a 
fivwn lako. On looking up aiong the nelge.«f this prong, I saw the lower- 
ing mass of black clouds gradually spreadout, and detadi themselTes from 
the siunmite of the loftier mountains, to which they had dung the whole 
morning and begjufi to roll slowly down the hill, seeming to touch the tiee 
tops, wEile along their lower edges hun|( a ffingeof dark vapour, or rather 
shreds of cloud m rapid motion, that shifted about, and shot out and short- 
ened like streamers. 

As yet thenre was no li|;htning nor nin, and in the expectation of escap- 
ing the shower, as the wind was with me, I made mom sail, pashing the 
horse into a gallop, to the great dtsoonposure of the negro who sat bonde 



^ Massa, yon ean*t escape it, you are gallopptn|; intoit : don't massa hear 
de sound of de rain coming along against ae wmd, ana smell de earthy 
smell of him like one new-made grave V* 

** The sound of the rain.*' In another clime, long, long aflo, I had often 
read at my old mother's knee, *' And Elijah said unto Ahdk, Siere is a tound 
«f abundance of rain, prepavs thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain 
stop thee not ; and it came to pass, in the mean while, that the heaven was 
dark with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain." 

I looked, and so it was, lor in un instant a white sheet of the heaviest 
'nin I had ever seen (if rain it might be called, for it was more like a water- 
spout) fell from the lower edge S the black cloud, with a strong rushing 
noise, that increased as it approached to a loud roar like that of a watorfalL 
As it came along, it seemed to devour the reeks and trees, for they disap- 
peared behind the watery screen the instant it reached Chcm. We saw it 
Aead of us for more than a mile coming along the road, preceded by a 
black line from the moistening of the white dust, right in the wind's eye, 
and with such an even front, that I verily believe it was descending in 
buoketefoll on my horse's head, while as yet not one drop had reached me. 
At this moment the adjutent-general of the forces, Colonel F— — , of the 
Coldstream Quards, in his tandem, drawn by two sprightly blood bays, 
with his servant, a liebt boy, mounted Creole lasfaioD on the leader, was 
coining up in my wake at a spot where the road sank into « bellow, and was 
tmverrod by a waternsourse already running knee deep, although diy as « 
bone but the minute before. 

1 was now drenched to the skin, the water pouring <rat in cascades from 
both sides of the vehicle, when just as I reached the top of the opposite 
bank, there was a flash of lightmng so vivid, aoeompaniedby an ezptoeion 
so loud and tremendous, that my horse, trembling from stem to stern, stood 
dead still ; the dusky youth by mj^ side jmnoed eat, and buried his^snout 
ia the mod, like a poner in Spain numling for acorns, and I felt more 
<|neerish than I would willingly nave confessed tx I could have knelt and 
prayed. The noise of the thunder was a shaip eai^piereing crash, as if the 
whole vault ef heaven had been made ef glass, and had been shivered at a 
blow by the hand of the Almighty.* 

It was, I am sure, twenty seconds before the usual roar and rumbling 
nverbention of the report from the hills, and among the clouds, was 
heard. 

I drove on, and arrived just in time to dress for dinner, but I did not leant 
till next day, that the flash which paralyied me had struck dead the oolo- 
nel's servant and leading horsey as he ascended the bank of the ravine, by 
this time so much swoUen, that the body of the lad was washed off the road 
into the neighbouring guUv, where it was found, when the waten subsided, 
eatimly covered with sand. 

I found the party congregated in the piana around Mr. F]fall, who was 
(Mttng his jokes, withont much regard to the feelings of his guests, and 

44— T 



ezbifaiting as jmat a dtnegard of the oommoh cmlHisB and temiiemm of 
life as can well be imagined. One of the party was a tittle red-faced geiH 
tkmaii, Peregrine Whiffle, Esquire, by name, who, in Jamaica parlance, 
was designated an extraordmanf master in Chancery ; the overseer of the 
pen, or breeding farm, in the great hoose, as it is called, or mansion-hoiise^ 
m which Mr. frail resided, and a merry, laughing, intaUisent, round, red- 
faced man, witn a sort of Duncan &nockdiindernose,3iroi|gh the wide 
nostrils of which you could see a cable's length into his head ; he was either 
Fyall*s head den, or a sort of first lieutenant ; these personages and my- 
self composed the party. The dinner itself was excellent, ahmugh rather 
of the rough and round order : the wines and food intrinsically eood ; but 
my appetite was not increased by the exhibition of a deformed, bloated 
negro child, about ten years old, which Mr. Fyall planted at his elbow, and. 
by way of practical joke, stuffed to repletion with all kinds of food ana 
strong drink, until the little dingy brute was carried out drunk. 

The wine circulated freely, and by-and-by Fyall indulged in some 
remarkable stories of his youu, for he was the only speaker, which I found 
some difficulty in swallowing, until at leng^ on onethumper being tabled, 
invoLying an impossibility, and utteriy indigestible, I inyoluntuily ex- 
claimed, " By Jupiter !" 

« You want tfny ting, massa V* promptly chimed in the black serymnt at 
my elbow, a diminutiye kiln-dried old negro. 

** No,** said I, rather caught 

'' Oh, me tink you call for Jupiter." 

I looked in the baboon's face — « Why, if I did, what then ?*> 

**Only me Jupiter, at massa saryice, dat all." 

<^ You are, eh •— no great shakes of a Thunderer ; aad who is that tall 
square man standing TOhind your master's chair t'* 

** Daddy Cupid, massa.** 

H And the oid woman who is canying away the dishes in the piaxM. 7^ 

" Mammy Weenus." 

« Daddy Cupid, and Mammy Weenus — Shade of Homer !" 

Jupiter, to my surprise, shrunk fi^m my side, as if he had receiyed a 
blow, and the next moment I could hear him communing with Venus in 
the piasza. 

*< For true, dat leetle man-of*war buccra must be Obeah man ,* how de debil 
him come to sabe dat it was stable-boy Homer who broke de candle shade 
on massa right hand, dat one wid de piece broken out of the edge 7" and 
here he pointed towards it with his cAin— >a negro always points with his 
chin. 

I had neyer slept on shore out of Kingston before ; the night season in the 
country in dear old England, we all know, is usually one of the deepest 
stillness — here it was anything but still ; — as the evening closed in, there 
arese a loud humming none, a compound of the buning, and chirping, and 
whistling, and croaking of numberless reptiles and insects, on the earth, in 
the air, and in the water. 1 was awakened out of my first sleep by it, not 
that the sound was disasreeable, but it was unusual ; and eyefy now and 
then a beetle, the size oryour thumb, would bang in Uiroagh the open win- 
dow, cruise round the room with a noise like a humming-top, and then daaee 
a quadrille with half a dozen bats ; while the dre-ffles glanced like sparks, 
spanning the folds of the muslin curtains of the bed. The croak of the 
tree-toad, too, a genteel reptile, with all the usual loyeable properties of his 
species, about the size of the crown of your hat, sounded nom the neigh- 
bouring swamp, like some one snoring on the piazza, blendtne harmoni- 
ously with the nasal concert got up by Jupiter, and some other heathen 
deities, who were sleepiujv there almost naked, excepting the head, which 
eyeiy negro swathes auiing the night with as much flannel and as many 



¥0M CanroiA's loo. PS 

haadkevehiels as he can jcommftnd. By the way they all al^ on their 
faces — I wonder if this will account for their flat noses; 

Next moraing we started at daylight, cracking along at the rate of twelve 
knots an hour in a sort of gig, with one horse in the shafts, and another 
hooked on abreast of him to a sort of studdingsail-boom, or outrigger, 
and followed by three mounted senrants, each with a led horse andtwo 
sumpter mules. 

la the evening we arrived at an estate under Mr. Fyall's management, 

'having passed a party of maroons immediately before. I never saw finer 

EMn — tall, strapping fellows, dressed exactly as they should be and the 

climate requires ; wide duck trousers, over these a loose shirt, of duck also, 

SLthered at the waist by a broad leathern belt, through which, on one side, 
eir short cutlass is stuck, while on the other hangs a leathern pouch for 
ball, and a loose thong across one shoulder, supports, on the opposite hip, 
a lar^ powder-horn and haversack. This, with a straw hat, and a short 
gun in their hand, with a sling to be used on a march, completes their 
equipment — in better keeping with the climate, than the paaded coats, 
heavy caps, tight cross-belts, and ponderous muskets of our regulars. As 
we drove up to the door, the overseer began to bawl, **Boys, ooys !" and 
kept blowing a dog-call. All the servants in the country in the West 
Indies, be they as old as Methuselah, are called boys. In the present 
instance, half a dozen black fellows forthwith appeared, to take our lug- 
gage, and attend on ** massa " in other respects. The great man was as 
austere to the poor overseer^ as if he had been guilty of some misdemeanour, 
and after a few short, crabbed words, desired him to get supper, " do you 
hear?" 

The meat consisted of plantation fare — salted fish, plantains and yams, 
and a piece of goat mutton. Another "observe," — a South-Down mut- 
ton, after sojourning a year or two here', does not become a goat exactly, 
but he changes his heavy warm fleece, and wears long hair ; and his pro- 
geny aflter him, if bred on the hot plains, never assume the wool again. — 
Mr. "Fyall and I sat down, and then in walked four mutes, stout young 
fdlows, not over-well dressed, and with faces burned to the colour of brick- 
dust. They were the book-keepers, so called because they never see a 
book, their province being to attend Uie negroes in the field, and to super- 
intend the manufacture of sugar and rum in the boiling and distillmg- 
houses. 

One of them, the head book-keeper as he was called, appeared literally 
roasted by the intensity of the sun's rays. 

<' How is Baldy Steer ?" said the overseer to this person. 

** Better to-day, sir — I drenched him with train-oil and sulphur." 

*« The devil you did," thought I — " alas for Baldy." 

'* And Mary, and Caroline, and the rest of that lot ?" 

"Are sent to Perkins's Red Rover, sir ; but I believe some of them are 
in calf already by Bullfinch— and I have cut Peter for the lampas." 

The knife and fork dropped from my hands. ** What can all this mean ? 
is this their boasted kindness to their slaves ? One of a family drenched 
with train-oil and brimstone, another cut for some horrible complaint never 
hoi.rd of before, called lampas, and the females sent to Red Rover, some 
being in calf already !" But I soon perceived that the baked man was the 
cowboy or shepherd of the estate, making his report of the casualties among 
his bullocks, mules, and heifers. 

'* Juliet Rid^e will not yield, sir," quoth another. 

" Who is this next ? a stubborn concern she must be.'* 

'* The liquor is very poor." Here he helped himself to rum and water, 
the rum coming up about an inch in the glass, regular half and bal^ fit to 
Jkmt a mailiiispike. ^ 



§L< 



$4 90M eKlF«I«B*8 1.06. 

"It is ame than joon ib," thought I j and I a^n stared in wondter- 
ment, until I pereeiTO he spoke of roe jaice of a cane patch. 

At this tiiiie'a tali, lathy gentleman come in, weaiing a most oiiginal cat 
coatee. He was a most extraordinaiy built man ; he had absolutely do 
body, his bottom being placed between his shoulders ; but what was wanted 
in corpus was made up m less — indeed he looked like a pair of compasses, 
buttoned together at the shomders, and supportins a yellow phiz halfa yara 
long, tinitcned with a fell of sandy hair, iallins down lank and greasy on 
each side of his face. Fyall called him Buckskin, which, with some other 
circumstances, made me guess that he was neither more nor less than an 
American smuggler. 

Afler supper, a ^ass of punch was filled for each person ; the mftneer 

.▼e a rap on the table with his knuckles, and off started the book-keepers,. 

:e shots out of shorels, leaving tbe Yankee, Mr. Fyatt, the OTeiseer, and 
myself, at table. 

I was very tired, and reckoned on going to bed now — bat no such thing* 
Fyall ordered Jupiter to bring a case from his gi^-boz, containing some 
capital brandy. A new brewage of punch took place, and I founa about 
the small hours that we were all Torgin v fast towanls drunkenness, or some- 
thing very like that same. The Yankee was especially plied by Ff ail» 
evidently with an object, and he soon succeeded in making him helplessly 
drunk. 

The fun now '' grew fiist and furious,'* — a large wash-tub was ordered 
in, placed under a beam at the comer cf the room, and filled with water ; a 
sack and a three-indi rope were then called for, and promntly produced bv 
the blackies, who, apparently accustomed to FyalPs pranks, grinned wkh 
delight — Buckskin was thrust into the sack, feet foremost ; the mouth of 
it was then gathered round his throat with a string, and I was set to splice a 
bight in therope,so as to fit under his aims without running, whichmigbt have 
choked him. All things being prepared, the slack end was thrown over the 
beam. He was soused in the tub, the word was given to hoist away, and 
we ran him up to the roof, and then belayed the rope round the body of the 
overseer, who was able to sit on his chair, and that was all. The cold ba^ 
and the being hung up to dry, speedily sobered the American, but his aims 
bdng within the sack, he could do nothing for his own emancipation'; he 
kept swearing, however, and entreating, imd dancing with rage, every je^ 
drawing the cord tiditer round the waist of the overseer, who, unaware of 
his situation, thought himself bewitched as he was drawn with violence by 
starts along the floor, with the chair as it were glued to him. At length 
ti^e patient eztrieatect one of his arms, and laying hold of the beam above 
him, drew himself up, and then letting go his hold suddenly, fiuily lifted the 
drunken overseer, chair and all, several feet from the grouno, so as to brin^ 
him on a level with Idmself, and then, in mid ai^ again to pummel his 
counterpoise with right good-wilL At lengtlu fearful of the consequences, 
from the fury into which the man had worked himself, Fyal) and 1 dashed 
out the canmes, and fled to our rooms, where, afler barricading the doors, 
we shouted to the servants to let the gentleman down. 

The next morning had been fixed for duck-shooting, and the overseer and 
I were creeping along among the man^ve bushes on the shore, to get a 
shot at some teal, when we saw our fnend the pair of compasses crossing 
the small bay in Ins boat, towards his little pilot-boat-built schooner, which 
was moorea in a small creek opposite, the brushwood concealing every 
thing but her masts. My companion, as wild an Irishman as I ever knew, 
haim him, — 

<'EEiirQ, Obadia— Buckskin— you Yankee rascal, heave-to. Come 
ashore here — come ashore.** 

Obed, smoking his pipe, deliberately uneoHed himself — i thought, as lie 



TOM criholk's loo. 95 

fose, there was to be no end of him — and stood upright in the boat, Kke 
anUUriggedjaiy-mast 

**I say, Master Tummas, you bent no friend of mine, I guess, a^ter last 
night's work ; yoa hears how I coughs 1^ — and he began to wheezle and 
erow in a most remarkable fashion. 

" Never mind," rejoined the overseer ; "if you go roand that point, and 
pat up the ducks — by the piper, but Pll fire at you !'' 

Obed neighed like a horse expecting his oats, which was meant as a 
langh of dension. " Do yon think your birding-piece can touch me here 
away. Master Tummas V* And again he nickered more loudly than before. 

** Don't provoke me to try, you yellow snake, you !" 

" Try, and be damned, and there's a mark for thee," unveiling a certain 
part of kuB body, turt his face. 

The overseer, or busha, to give him his Jamaica name, looked at me and 
smiled, then cooUv lifted his long Spanish barrel, and fired. Down dropped 
the smuggler, ana ashore came the boat. 

'< I am mortally wounded. Master Tummas," quoth Obed ; and I was 
confoundly frightened at first, from the unusual proximity of the injured part 
to his head ; but the overseer, as soon as he could get on the ground where 
he had thrown himself in an uncontrollable fit of laughtw, had the man . 
stripped and laid across a log, where he set his servant to pick out the pel- 
lets with a penknife. 

Next night I was awakened out of my first sleep by a peculiar sort of tap, 
tap, on the floor, as if a cat with walnut shells had been moving about the 
room. The feline race, in all its varieties, is my detestation, so I slipped out 
of bed to expel the intruder ; but the instant my toe touched the ground, it 
was seized as by a smith's forceps. I drew it mto bed, but the annovai^ce 
followed it ; and in an agony of alarm and pain, I thrust my hand down, 
when ray thumb was instantly manacled to the other sufl^ring member. I 
now lost my wits altogether, and roared murder, which brought a servant 
in with a hght, and there I was, thumb and toe, in the clinch of a land- 
crab. 

I had been exceedingly struck with the beauty of the negro villages on 
the old settled estates, which are usually situated in the most picturesque 
spots, and I determined to visit the one which lay on a sunny bank full in 
view from my window, divided on two sides from the cane pieces by a pre- 
cipitous ravine, and on the other two by a high logwood hedge, so like haw- 
thorn, that I could scarcely tell the difierence, even when close to it 

At a distance it had the appearance of one entire orchard of fruit-trees, 
where were mingled together the pyramidal orange, in fruit and in flower, 
the former in all its stages from green to dropping ripe, — > the citron, lemon, 
and lime-trees, the stately, glossy-leaved star-apple, the golden shaddock 
and grape-fruit, with their slender branches bending under their ponderous 
yellow fruit, — the cashew, with its wpp\e like those of the cities ot the plain, 
fair to look at, but acrid to the taste, to which the far-famed nut is appended 
like a bud, — the avocado, with its brobdignas pear, as large as a purser's 
lantern, — the bread-fruit, with a leaf, one oi which would have covered 
Adam like a bishop's apron, and a fruit for all the world in size and shape 
like a blackamoor^s head ; while for underwood you had the ^en, fresh, 
dew-spangled plantain, round which in the hottest day there is always a 
halo of coolness,^ the coco-root, the yam and granadillo, with their lon^ 
vines twining up the neighbouring trees and shrubs like hop tendrils, — and 
peas and beans, in all their endless variety, of blossom and of odour, from 
the Lima bean, with a stalk as thick as my arm, to the mouse pea, three 
inches high, — the pine-apple, literally growing in, and constituting, with 
its prickly leaves, part of tne hedge-rows, — the custard apple, like russet 
bogs of cold puddingy —the eoooa and oofieo bushes^ and tne devil knowf^ 
7» 



96 TOH ciiiiroLE's loo. 

what all that is deli^tful in nature besides ; while aloft, the tall graoefaf 
cocoa-nut, the majestic palm, and the gigantic wild cotton-tree, shot up 
here and there like minarets far above tm rest, Mgh into the blue heaTens. 

I entered one of the narrow winding footpaths, where an immense variety 
of convolvuli crept along the penguin fences, disclosing their delicate flowers 
in the momins freshness, (all that class here shut shop at noon,) and pas- 
sion flowers of all sizes, from a soup plate to a thumb ring. 

The huts were substantially thatched with palm leaves, and the walls 
woven with a basket work of twigs, plastered over with clav, and white- 
washed ; the floors were of bak^ clay, dry and comfortable. They all 
consisted of a hall and a sleeping- room on each side c^it : in many of the 
former I noticed maho^ny sideboards and chairs, and glass decanters, 
while a whole lot of Afncan drums and flutes, and sometimes a good gon, 
hung from the rafters ; and it would have gladdened an Iri^mas's heart to 
have seen the adjoining piggeries* Befoie one of the houses, an old woman 
was taking care of a dozen black infants, little naked, ^osey, black suinea- 

E'gs, with party-coloured beads tied round their loins^ each squatted like a 
Me Indian pagod in the middle of a large wooden bowl, to keep it offUie 
damp ground. 

WhDe I was pursuing my ramble, a large conch-shell was blown at the 
overseer's house, and the difierent gangs turned in to dinner ; they came 
along, dancing and shouting, and playing tricks on each other in the little 
paths, in all the happy anticipation of a good dinner, and an hour and a half 
to eat it in, the men well clad in Osnaburv frocks and trousers, and the 
women in baize petticoats and Osnaborg shifts, with a neat printed calico 
short gown over aU. 

*' And these are slaves," thought I, " and thit is West Indian bondage ! Qh 
that some of my well-meaning anti-slavery friends were here, to judge from 
the evidence of their own senses I" 

The following night there was to be a grand play or wake in the negro 
houses, over the head cooper, who had died in the momins, and I determined 
to be present at it, although the overseer tried to dissuade me, saying that 
no white person ever broke in on these orgies, that the negroes were very 
averse to their doing so, and that neither he, nor any of the white people on 
the estate, had ever been present on such an occasion. This very interdict 
excited my curiosity still more ; so I rose about midnight, and let myselt 
eently down through the window, and shaped my course in the direction of 
Uie negro houses, guided by a loud drumming, which, as I came nearer, 
every now and then sunk into a low murmuring roll, when a strong bass 
voice would burst forth into a wild recitative ; to which succeeded a loud 
piercing diorus of female voices, during which the drums were beaten with 
great vehemence ; this was saceeeded by another solo, and so on. There 
was no moon, and I had to thread my way along one of the Winding foot- 
paths by star-light When I arrived witmn a stone-cast of the hut before 
which trie play was being held, I left the beaten track, and crept onwards,, 
until I gained the shelter of the stem of a wild cotton-tree, behmd which I 
skulked unseen. 

The scene was wild enough. Before the door a circle was formed by 
about twenty women, all in meir best clothes, sitting on the ground, and 
swaying their bodies to and fro, while they sung in chorus the wild dirge 
already mentioned, the words of which I eould not make out ; in the centre 
of the circle sat four men playing on gumbies, or the long drum formerly 
described, while a fifth stood' behind them, with a conch-shell, which he 
kept sounding at intervals. Other three negroes kept circling round the 
outer verge of the circle of women, naked all to their waist cloths, spinning 
about and about with thar hands above their heads, like so many aandng 
dervishes. It was <me of these three that from time to tin>e took up the io> 



/\ 



/. 



\ 



TOM'CRUIOLS's LOO. 97 

citative, the female chorus breaking in alter each line. Close to the drum- 
mers lay the body in an open coffin, supported on two low stools or tres. 
sels ; a piec« of flaming resinous wood was stuck in ^e ground at the head, 
and another at the feet, and a hump of kneaded clay, in which another 
torchlike splinter was fixed, rested on the breast. An old man, naked like 
the solo singer, was digging a grave close to where the body lay. The fol- 
lowing was the chant : — 

** I say, broder, you can*t go yet." 

THEN THE CHORUS OF FEMALE Y0ICE8. 

" When de morning star rise, den we put you in a hole.'* 

CHORUS AOAIN. 

" Den you go in a Africa, you see Fetish dere." 

CHORUS. 

" You shall nyam goat dere, wid all your fiunily." 

CHORUS. 

<( Buccra can't comie dere ; say, Dam rascal, why you no work 7" 

CHORUS. 

*< Buccra can't catch Duppy,'*' no, no." 

Three calabashes, or gourds, with pork, yams, and rum, were placed 
on a small bench that stood close to the head of the bier, and at right angles 
to it. 

In a little while, the women, singing- men, and drummers, suddenly 
gave a loud shout, or rather yell, clapped their hands three times, and then 
rushed into the surrounding cottages, leaving the old grave-digger alone 
with the body. 

He had completed the ^ve, and had squatted himself on his hams be- 
side the coffin, swinging his body as the women had done, and uttering a 
low moaning sound, frequently ending in a loud pechj like that of a paviour 
when he brings down his rammer. 

I noticed he kept looking towards the east, watching, as I conjectured, 
the first appearance of the morning star, but it was as yet too early. 

He lifteo the gourd with the pork, and took a large mouthful. 

<< How is dis ? I can't put dis meat in Gtuacco's coffin, dere is salt in de 
pork : Duppy can't bear salt," another large mouthful — " Duppy hate salt 
too much," — here he ate it all up, and placed the empty gourd in the 
coffin. He then took up the one with boiled yam in it, and tasted it also. 

** Salt here too — who de debil do such a ting? — must not let Duppy 
taste dat" He discussed this also, placing the empty vessel in the coffin 
as he had done with the other. He then came to the calabash with the rum. 
There is no salt there, thought I. 

" Rum ! ah, Duppy love rum — if it be well strong, let me see — Massa 
Ni^er, who put water in a dis rum, eh ? Duppy will never touch dat" 
— A long pull — " no, no, never touch dat" Here he finished the whole, 
and placed the empty vessel beside the others ; then gradually sunk back 
on his hams with his mouth open, and his eyes startins from the sockets, 
as he peered up into the tree, apparently at some terrible object I looked 
up also, and saw a large yellow snake, nearly ten feet long, let itself grad- 
ually down directly over the coffin, between me and the br^t elare, (the 
outlme of its glossy mottled skin glancing in the strong light, which gave 
its dark opaque body the appearance of beinp ed^ed with flame, and its 
glittering tongue, that of a red-hot wire,) with its tail round a limb of the 
cotton-tree, until its head reached within an inch of the dead man's fiMe, 
which it licked with its long forked tongue, uttering a loud hissing noise. 

♦ Duppy, ghott. 



/ 



98 TOM CHUfOLl's LOG. 

I was fascinated with terror, and could not move a muscle ; at lengtB the 
creature slowly swung itself up again, and disappeared among the branches* 

Gtuashie gained courage, as the rum began to operate, and the snake to 
disappear. *^ Come to catch Cluacco^s Dupp3r, before him get to Africa, 
sure as can be. De metody parson say de debil old sarpent — dat must be 
old sarpent, for 1 never see so big one, so it must be de debil." 

He caught a glimpse of my face at this moment ; it seemed that I had 
no powers of fascination lilie the snake, for he roared out, <^ Murder, mur^ 
der, de debil, de debil, first like a sarpent, den like himself; see him white 
face behind de tree ; see him white face behind de tree ;*' and then, in the 
extremity of his fear, he popped, head foremost, into the grave, leaving his 
quivering legs and feet sticking upwards, as if he had been planted by tiie 
head, like a forked parsnip reversed. 

At this uproar, a number of negroes ran out of the nearest houses, and, to 
my surprise, four white seamen appeared suddenly among them, who, the 
moment they got sight of my uniform, as I ran away, gave chase, and 
having overteiken me, as I stumbled in the dark path, immediately pinioned 
me. rhey were all armed, and I had no doubt were part of toe cxew 
of the smuggling schooner, and that they had a depot among the negro 
houses. 

" Yaho, my hearty, heave-to, or here goes with a brace of bullets." 

I told them who I was, and that curiosity alone brought me there. 

^ Gammon, tell that to the marines ; you^re a spy, messmate, and on 
board you go with us, so sure as I be Paul Brandy wine. 

Here was a change with a vengeance. An hour before I was surrounded 
by friends, and resting comfortably in my warm bed, and now I was a pris- 
oner to a set of brigands, who were smugglers at the best, and what might 
they not be at the worst ? I had no chance of escape by any sudden effort 
of strength or activity, for a piece of a handspike had been thrust acroes my 
back, passing under both of my arms, which were tightly lashed to It, as if 
I had been trussed for roasting, so that I could no more run, with a chance 
of escape, than a goose without her pinions. After we left the negro houses, 
I perceived, with some surprise, that 'my captors kept the beaten track, 
leading directly to, and past the overseer's dwelling. "Come, here is a 
chance, at ail events," argued I to myself; *'if I get within hail, I will 
alarm the lieges, if a deuced good pipe don't fail me." 

This determination had scarcely been framed in my mind, when, as if my 
very thoughts had been audible, the smuggler next me on the right hand 
drew a pistol., and held it close to my starboard ear. 

" Friend, if you tries to raise the house, or speaks to any niggen or other 
person we meets, I'll walk through your skull with two ounces of^lead." 

« You are particularly obliging," said I ; ** but what do you promise your- 
selves by carrying me off? Were you to murder me you would be none 
the richer ; for I have no valuables about me, as you may easily ascertain 
by searching me." 

** And do you think that freebom Americans like we have kidnapped you 
for your dirty rings, and watch, and mayhap a few dollars, which I takes 
you to mean by your waluboles, as you calls them V* 

** Why, then, tofcof , in the devil's name, have you kidnapped me for?" 
And I began to feel my choler overpowering my discretion, wnen Mr. Paul 
Brandywme, whom I now suspected to be the mate of the smuggler, took the 
small liberty of jerking the lanyard, that had been made fast to the middle 
of the handspike, so violently, that I thought both my shoulders were dislo- 
cated ; for I was fairiy checked down on my back, just as you may have 
seen a pig-merchant on the Fermoy road bnng an uproarious boar to his 
marrowbones ; while the man who had previously threatened to blow my 



TOM CBIVeiiB'S LOCk 90 

brains out, kneeled bende me, and civilly insinuated, that <*if I was tiied 
of my life, he calculated I had better speak as loud agpn." 

There was no jest in all this ; so I had nothing for it but to walk silentlv 
along with my escort, after having gathered myself up as well as I could. 
We crept so close under the windows of the overseer's house, where we 
picked up a lot of empty ankers, slung on a long pole, that I fancied I heard, 
or leally did hear, some one snore — oh how 1 envied the sleeper ! At lengTh 
we reached the beach^ where we found two men lying on their oars, in what,' 
so far as I could distinguish, appeared to be ik sharo swift-lookins whale 
boat, which they kept close to, with her head seaward, however, to he remdf 
for a start should anything suspicious appear near to them. 

The boat-keeper miiled promptly, ** Who goes there ?*' as they feathered 
their oars. 

''The tidy little Wave," was the answer. 

No more words passed, and the men who had, in the first instance, pull- 
ed a stroke or two to give the boat way, now backed water, and tailed her 
on to the beach, 'When we all stepped on board. 

Two of my captors now took each an oar ; we shoved off, and glanced 
away throu^ the darkness, along the smooth surface of the sparkhng sea, 
until we reached the schooner, by this time hauled out into the fair way at 
the mouth of the cove, where she lay hove short, with her mainsail hoisted 
up, nding to the land-wind, and apparently aU ready to cant and be cNff the 
moment the boat returned. 

As we came alongside, the captain of her, my friend Obediah, as I had 
no difficulty in guessinff, from his very outpof-tne-way configuration, dark 
as it was, caliedout, "I says, Paul, who have you got in the stain-sheets 
there?" 

*' A bloody spy. Captain ; he who was with the overseer when he pep- 
pered your sheathing t'other morning." 

'* Oho, brin^ him on board >- bring him on board. I knows there be a 
man-of-war scnooner close aboard ofthe island somewheres hereabouts. I 
sees throu^ it all, smash my eyes ! — I sees through it But what kept 
yoa, Paul ? Dont you see the morning star has risen ?" 

By this time I stood on the deck of the little vessel, which was not above 
a foot out of the water ; |ind Obediah, as he spoke, pointed to the small 
dark pit of a companion, for there wa9 no light below, nor indeed any- 
where on board, except on the binnacle, and that carefully masked, indica- 
ting by his threatening manner, that I was to get below as speedily as pos- 
sible. 

" Don't you see the morning star, sir ? Why, the sun will be up in an 
hour, I calculate, and then the sea-breeze will be down on us before weget 
anything of an offin»." 

The mention of uie morning star called vividly to my recollection the 
ecene I had so recently witnessed at the negro wake ; it seemed there was 
another person beside poor duacco, likely to be crammed into a hole be- 
fore the day broke, and to be carried to Africa too, for Mrfaat I knew ; but 
one must needs go when the devil drives, so I sUpped down into the cabin, 
and the schooner having weighed, made sail to the northward* 



MX) MM oBurauft's uHk 



CHAPTER VHL 

TBI CBA8B or TBM SMVOOLHU 

*< WoaM I wen in an alehouM in London, I would gi?« all my fiuna Ibr a poc of «!•» 
and aaftty.'* 

Kxirfl Heh&t T. 

Thb crib in which I was confined was as dark as pitch, and, as I soon 
found, as hot as the black-hole in Calcutta. I donH pretend to be braver 
than my neighbours, but I would pluck any man by the beard who called 
me coward. In my small way I nad in my time raced death in varioiis 
shapes ; but it had always been above board, with the open heaven over- 
head, and generally I had a goodlv fellowship in dangler, and the eyes of 
others were upon me. 'No wonder, then, that the smking of the heart 
within me, which 1 now experienced for the first time, was oitter exceed- 
ingly, and grievous to be borne. Cooped up in a small suffijcating cabin, 
scarcely eight feet square, and not above four feet high, with the certainty 
of being murdered, as I conceived, were I to try to force my way on deck ; 
and the knowledge that all my earthly prospects, all my dreams of promo- 
tion, were Ukely to be blasted, and for ever ruined, bv my sudden spiriting 
away, not to take into the heavy tale the misery which my poor mother 
and my fiiends must suffer, when they came to know it — ana '* who will 
tell this to thee, Mary?" rose to mv throat, but could get no farther for a 
cursed bump that was like to throttle me. Why should I blush to own it 
— when the gipsy, after all, jinked an old rich goutified cofiee-planter at the 
eleventh hour, and married me, and is now the mother of half-a-dozen httle 
Cringles -or so ? However, 1 made a strong effort to bear my misfortunes 
like a man, and, folding my arms, I sat down on a chest to abide my fate, 
whatever that might be, with as much composure as I could command, 
when half-a-dozen cockroaches flew flicker nicker against mjr face. 

For the information of those who have never seen this delicious insect, I 
take leave to mention here, that, when full grown, it is a large dingy brown- 
coloured beetle, about two inches lone, wiUi six legs, and two reelers as 
long as its body. It has a strong anti-hysterical flavour, scjething between 
rotten cheese and asafGBtida, and seldom stirs abroad when the sun is up, 
but lies concealed in the most obscure and obscene crevices it can creep 
into ; so that, when it is seen, its wings and body are thickly covered with 
dust and dirt of various shades, which any culprit who chances to fall asleep 
with his month open, is sure to reap the benefat of, as it has a great propen- 
sity to walk into it, partly for the sake of the crumbs adhering to the masti- 
cators, and also, apparently, with a scientific desire to inspect, by accurate 
admeasurement with the aiforesaid antenne, the state and condiUon of the 
whole potato trap. 

At the same time I felt something gnawing the toe of my boot, which' I 
inferred to be a rat — another agreeable customer for which I had a special 
abhorrence ; but, as for beetles of all kinds, from mv boyhood up, they had 
been an abomination unto me, and a cockroach is the most abominable of 
all beetles ; so between the two I was speediljr roused from mv state of 
supine, or rather dogged endurance ; and, forgetting the geography of my 
position, I sprung to my feet, whereby I nearly fractured my skull against 
^e. low deck above. I first tried the skylight ; it was battened down — 
-thfin the companion hatch ; it was locked— but the ladder leading up to it 



TOX cringle's I.0O. 101 

being cooler than the iioieome vmpoar bath I had left, I remained etandiiig 
in it, trying to catch a mouthful cif fresh air through the joints of the door. 
AU this while we had been slipping along shore with the land* wind on our 
beam, at the rate of five or six Knots, but so gently and silently, that I could 
distinctly hear the roar of the sorf, as the long smooth swell broke on the 
beachy which, from the loudness of the noise, could not be above a mile to 
windward of us. I peroeiyed at tiie same time that the schooner, although 
going free, did not keep away nor take all the advantage of the land-wind 
to make has easting, before the sea-breeze set down, mat he might have 
done, so that it was evident he did not intend to beat up, so as to fetch the 
Crooked Island Passage, which would have been his course, had he been 
bound for the States ; but was standing over to the Cuba shore, at that time 
swarming with pirates. 

It was now good daylight, and the terral gradually died away, and left 
us rolling gunwale imder, as we rose and fSi on tlie long seas, with our 
sails flapping, bulk-heads creaking and screaming, and matnboom jig-jig- 

8'ng, as if it would have torn every thing to pieces. I could hear my mend 
bed walking the deck, and whiaUine manfully for the se»*breeze, and 
ozdainaing from time to time in his barbarous lingo, ** Souffle, souffle, San 
Antonia" But the saint had no bowds, and there we lay roasting until 
near ten o'clock in the forenoon. During all this period, Obed, who was 
shortsighted, as I learned afterwards, kept desiring his right arm, Paul 
Brandy wine, to keep a bright look-out for the sea-breeze to windward, or 
rather to the eastward, for there was no vrind — « because he knowed it 
oftentimes tumbling down right sudden and dangerous at this season about 
the comer of the island hereabouts ; and the pride of the morning often 
bioa^lit a shower with it, fit to level a maize plat smooth as his hand.** 

" No black clouds to windward yet, Paul ?'* 

Paul could see notlung, and the question was repeated three or four 
times. 

** There is a small bladL cloud about the size of my hand to windward, 
sir, right in the wake of the sun, just now, but it won't come to any thing ; 
1 sees BO si^s of any wind." 

** And Ehjah said to his servant, ^ up now, and look towards the sea, 
and he went up and looked, and said. There is nothing ; and he said. Go 
again, seven times, and it came to pass the sevenUi time, that he siud, Be- 
- had, there ariseth a little doud out of the sea, like a man's hand.'* 

I knew what this foreboded, which, as I thought, was more than friend 
Obed did ; for he shortened no sail, and kept all his kites abroad, for no 
use, as it struck me, unless he wished to wear them out by flapping against 
the matfts. He was indeed a strange mixture of skitt and carefessness; 
but, when fairly sunvd up, one of the most daring and expert and self-pos- 
sessed seamen I had ever seen, as I very soon had an ugly opportunity of 
ascertaining 

The cloud on the horizon continued to rise rapidly, spreading over the 
whole eastern sky, and the morning began to lower very omin<mriy ; but 
there was no sudden squall, the first of the breeze coming down as usual 
in cats' paws, and frei^ening gradually ; nor did I expect there would be, 
although I was certain it would soon blow a merry capful of wind, which 
miAt take in some of the schooner's small sails, and pretty considerably 
bo&er us, unless we could better our offing speedily, for it blew right on 
shore, wluch, by the setting in of the sea-breeze^ was now close under our 
tee. 

At length the sniffler reached us, and the sharp little vessel began to 
tpeakj as Uie rushing sound tlirough the water is called ; while the wind 
sang like an Eolian harp through the taut weather-riggins. Presently I 
heani the word given to take in the two gaff-topsails and l^ing jib, which 



4fai TOM C&IHaLB'a LOO. 

WM MsaioelT done, when the moaning ■oomi loo^ieiMd into a ANtf, and the 
little TeMel began to ^jrerk at the head seas, ae if she would have cut through 
them, in place.of rismg to them^ and to lie over, as if Davy Jones himself 
had clapperclawed the mastp'h^s, and was in the act of usinff them as 
levars to capsize her, while the itails were tugging at her, a* if t&y would 
have torn the spars out of her, so that I expected every moment, either that 
she would turn over, keel up, or that the maats would snap short off by the 
deck. 

Ail this, which I would* without the smallest feeling of dread, on theoon- 
traiy with exhilaration, have faced cheerily on deck m the course of duty, 
proved at the time, under my circumstances, most alarming and painful to 
me; a fair-strae death out of the maintop, or off the weather yaid-aim, 
would to my imagination have been an easy exit comparativdv ; but to be 
choked in taia abominable hole, and drowned darkling like a blind puppy 
— the very thouf^t made me frantic, and I shouted and tumbled aboul^ 
until I missed my footing and fell backwards down the ladder, from the 
bottom of which I scuttled away to the leo-side of the cabin, quiet, throng 
absolute despair and exhaustion from the heat and closeness. * 

1 had remarked that from the time the breeze freshened, the everlasting 
Yankee drawling of the crew, and the endless confabulation of the captain 
and his mate, haS entirely ceased, and nothing was now heard on deck but 
the angry voice of the ragins elements, and at intervals a shrill piercing 
word or two from Obed, in me altered tone of which I had some difficulty 
in reoognizins his pipe, which rose clear and distinct above the roar of tM 
sea and wind, and was always answered hj a prompt, sharp, '* my, ay, sir,** 
from the men. There was no circumlocution, nor calculating, nor guess* 
ing now, but all hands seemed to be doing their duty energetically and 
well. '' Come, the vagabonds are sailors after all, we snan't be awamped 
this turn ;'* and I resumed my place on the conroanion ladder, with more 
ease of mind, and a vast deal more composure, tnan when I was pitched 
from it when the squall came on. In a moment after 1 could hear the cap- 
tain sing out, loud even above the howling of the wind and rushing of the 
water, *' There it comes at last — put your helm hard a*port — down with 
it, Paul, down with it, man — luff, and shake the wind out of her sails, or 
over we goes, clean and for ever.*' Every thing was jammed, nothing could 
be let go, nor was there an axe at hand to make short work with the sheets 
and haulyards ; and for a second or two I thought it was all over, the water 
rushing half way up her decks, and bubblin' into the companion through the 
crevices ; but at length the lively little craft came gayly to the wind, shak- 
ing her plumage like a wild duck ; the sails were got in, all to the foresail, 
which was set wiA the bonnet off and then she lay-to like a sea-gull, with- 
out shipping a drop of water. In the comparative stillness I could no^^ 
distinctly hear ^very word that was said on aeck. 

<< Pretty near it; rather close shaving that same. Captain," quoth Paul, 
with a Gongiatulatory chuckle ; ^ but I aay, sir, what is that wreath of 
smoke rising from Annotta Bay over the headland ?'* 

« Why, ll»w should I know, Paul ? Negroes buniing hrush, I euess." 

** The smoke from brushwood never rose and flew over the blim with 
that swirl, I calculate ; it is a gun, or I mistake.** 

And he stepped to the companion for the purpose, as I conceived, of 
taking out the spy-daas, which usually hangs there in brackets fitted to 
hold it ; he undid the hatch and pushed it back, when I popped my head 
out, to the no small dismay of the mate ; but Obed was up to me, and while 
with one hand he seised the glass, he ran the sliding top sharp up against 
ray neck, till he pinned me into a kind of a pillory, to nqr great annoyance ; 
so I had to beg to be rdeasad, and once more slunk back into ray hole. 



f^i CRmBiiifs uoo» tod 

^nMre wm» a long pftoie } at length Paul, to whom the skipper had handed 
the spy-glass, spoke. 

** A schooner, sir, is rounding the pwit" 

As I afterwards learned, the negroes who had witnessea m^ captore. 
«fl|>eciaUy the old man who had tuLen me for his infernal majesty, had 
Kawed the alarm, so soon as they coald venture down to the overseer's 
house, wMch was on the smuggling boat shoving ofljand Mr. Fvall imme- 
diately despatehed an express to me lieutenant commanding the Gleam, 
then lying in Annotta Bay, about ten miles distant, when she instantly 
jdipped and shoved out 

"Well, I can't help it if there be," rejoined the captain. 

Another paasew 

''Why, I don't !ike her, sir; she looks like a man*of>war — and that 
iBQst have hetsA tiie smoke of the gun she fired on wei^ng." 

** Eh V* sharply answered Obed, ** if it be, it will be a hanging matter if 
we are caught with this ]^oung splice on board ; he may belong to her for 
wiiat I know. Look again, PauL" 

A long, idtiv look. 

*' A man-4>^war schooner, sure enou^, sir ; I can see her ensigir and 
pennant, now that she is clear of the land." 

" Oh Lord, oh Lord !" cried Obed, in great perplexity, ** what shall we 
do?" 

''Why, pull foot, captain," promptly replied Paul; "the breeze has 
lolled, and in light winas she will have no chance with the tidy lit^ 
Wave." 

I could now perceive that the smugglers made all sail, and I heard the 
frequent awish-swilh of the water as ^y threw buckeffuls on the sails, to 
thicken them and make them hold more wind, while we edged away, keep> 
ing as close to tt^e wind, however, as we could, without stopping her way. 

" Starboard,'^ quoth Obed — " mp full, Jem — let her walk throu^ it, my 
boy — there, main and foresails, flat as boards ; why, she will stand the 
main-gaflf topsail yet — set it, Paul, set it ;" and his heart warmed as he 
gained confidence in the qualifications of his vessel. <*Come, weather me 
ROW, see how she trips it along — poo, I was an ass to quail, wan't I, 
Paul?" 

No chance now, thought I, as I descended once more ; '* I may as well 
go and be suffocated at once." 1 knocked ray foot against something, in 
titepping off the ladder, which, on putting down my liand, I found to he 
a tmder^box, with steel and flTnt 1 had formerly ascertained there was a 
candle in the cabin, on the small table, stuck into a bottle ; so I immediately 
struck a light, and as I knew that meekness and solicitation, having been 
tried in vain, would not serve me, I determined to so on the other tack, and 
to see how far an assumption of coolness and sel^ possession, or, it might 
bef a'dash of bravado, whether true oe fei^ed, might not at least ensure 
me some consideration and better treatment from the lawless gang into 
whose hands I fallen. 

So I set to and raftsacked the lockers, where, among a vast variety of mis- 
cellaneous matters, I was not lonff in finding a bottle of very tolerable rum, 
some salt junk, some biscuit, and a g(^let or porous earthem jar of water, 
•Wl&i some capital cigars. By this time I was like to faint with the heat 
and smell ; so I fillea a tumbler with good half-and-half, and swigged it offi 
The efieet was speedy ; I thought I could eat a bit, so I attacked the salt 
junk and made a hearty meal, after which I replenished my tumbler, lighted 
a «gar, pulled off" my coat and waistcoat, and, with a sort of desperate 
^lee, struck up at the top of my pipe, *' Ye Manners of England**' My 
joviality was soon noticed on dedi. ^ 



104 TOM CEIH0£s'8 LOG, 

" £b, what be that 7" quoth Obed, — <* that be none of our4ittie8, 1 goMV 7 
who is singing below there ?" 

** We be ttlT on deck, sir," responded Paul. 

" It can't be the spy, eh ? — sure enough it must be he, and no one dse ; 
the heat and choke must have made him mad." 

" We shall soon see," said Paul, as he removed the skylight, and looked 
down into the (^bin. 

Obcd looked over his shoulder, peering at me with his little shortsighted 
pig's eyes, into which, in my pot valiancy, I immediately chucked half a 
tumbler of very strong grog, and under cover of it attempted to bolt thiougli 
the scuttle, and thereby gain the deck ; but Paul, with his shoulder of 
mutton fist, gave me a very unceremonious rebufi^ and down I dropped 
again. . < 

** You makes yourself at home, I sees, and be hanged to you," said 
Obed, laying the emphasis on the last word, pronouncing it '* yoo— oo " in 
two syllables. ^ 

** I do, indeed, and be damned to yoo— oo,*' I replied ; '< and why should 
I not? "^the visit was not volunteered, you know ; so come down, you lon^ 
leg^d'Yankee smuggling scoundrel, or I'll blow your bloody bucaniering 
craii out of the water like the pf el of an onion. You see I have got the 
magazine scuttle up, and ther^ are the barrels of powder, and here is the 
candle, so " 

Obed laughed like the beginning of the bray of the jackass before he 
swings off into his " heehaw, neehaw." — •' Smash my eyes, man, but them 
barrels be full of pimento, all but that one with the red mark, and that be 
crackers fresh ana sharp from the Brandy wine mills." 

•* Well, well, gunpowder or pimento, I'U set fire to it if you don't be 
civil." 

'* Why, I ufiU be civil ; you are a curious chap, a brave slip, to carry it 
80, with no friend near ; so, civil 1 will be." 

He unlocked the companion hatch and came down to the cabin, doubling 
his long limbs up like foot-cules, to suit the low roof. 

<< Free and easy, my man," continued the captain, as he entered. *' Well^ 
I forgive you — we are quits now — and if we were not beyond the Island 
craft, 1 would put you ashore ; but I can't stand back now. 

« Why, may I ask ?" 

" Simply, because one of your men-of-war schooners an't more than 
hull down astarn of me at this moment ; she is working up in shore, and 
has not chased me as yet ; indeed she may save herself the trouble, for 
ne'er a schooner in your blasted service has any chance with the tidy Uttle 
Wave," 

I was by no means so sure of this. 

<* Well, Master Obediah, it may turn up as you say, and in a hght wind, 
I know you will either sail or sweep away from any one of them ; but, to 
be on the square with you, if it comes on to blow, that same hooker, which 
I take to be his Britannic majesty's schooner Gleam, will, from his greater 
beam, and superior length, outcarry and fore-reach on you, ay, and weather 
on you too, hand over hand ; so this is my compact — if he nails you, you 
will require a friend at court, and I will stand that friend ; if you escape — 
and I will not interfere either by advice or otherwise, either to get you taken 
or to get vou clear — will you promise to put me on board of the first Eng- 
lish mercnant vessel we fall in with, or, at the longest, to land me at SL 
Jago de Cuba, and I will promise you, on my honour, notwithstanding all 
that has been said or done, that I will never hereafter inform against you, 
or in any way get you into trouble if I can help it Is it done ? Will you 
give me your hand upon it ?" 

Obed did not hesitate a moment ; he clenched my hand, and squeessed it 



r 



TOM chikgle's loo. 105 

till the blood nearly spouted frotn my fingeivends ; one might conceive of 
Norwegian' bears Greeting each other eiter this fiishion, bat I trust no 
Christian will ever, m time coming, subject my digits to a similar species of 
torture. 

** Agreed, my boy, I haoe nromised, and you may depend on me ; smug- 
ger though I be, and somewnat worse on occasion mayhap, I never breaks 
my word.'* 

Xhere was an earnestness about the poor fellow, in which I thought there 
could be no deception, and from the moment we were on what I may call 
a very friendly footing for a prisoner and his jailer. 

*< Well, now, 1 beheve you, so let us have a glass of grog, and——'* 
Here tbe mate sung out, " Captain, come on deck, if you please ; quickly, 
mr, quickly." 

By this time it had begun to breeze up again, and as the wind rose, I could 
see the spirits of tiie crew fell, as if conscious they had no chance if it fresh- 
ened. When we went on deck, Paul was still peering through the tele- 
scope. 

'* The schooner has tacked, sir." A dead silence ; then giving the glass 
a swin^, and driving the joints into each 'other, with such vehemence as if 
he would have broken them in pieces, he exclaimed, ** She is after us, so 
sure as I ben't a nigger." 

*' No ! is she though ?" eagerly inquired the captain, as he at length seized 
the spy-g^ass, twisting and tummg it about and about, as he tried to hit his 
own very peculiar focus. At length he took a long, long, breathless look, 
while the eyes of the whole crew, some fifteen hands or so, were riVeted 
upon him with tiie most intense anxiety. 

*' What a gaff topsail she has got — mv eye — and a ringtail with more 
cloth in it than our squaresail — and the breeze comes down stronger and 
stronger I" 

Allthis whUe I looked out equally excited, but with a very different in- 
terest. "Come, this will do," thought I: << she w after us j and if old Dick 
Gasket brings that fiery sea-breeze he nas now along with him, we shall 
puzzle the smuggler, for all his long start" 

" There's a gun, sir," cried Paul, trembling from head to foot. 
** Sure enou^" said the skipper ; " and it must be a signal. And there 
go three flags at the fore. -^ She must, I'll bet a hundred dollars, have taken 
our tidy Utue Wave for the admiral's tender that was lying in Morant 
Bay." 

** Blarney," thought I ; « tidy as your little Wave is, she won't deceive 
old Dick — he is not the man to take a herring for a horse ; she mwt be 
making signals to some man-of-war in sight." 

** A strange sail right ahead," sung out three men from forward all at 
once. 

«* Didn't I say so ?" — I had only thought so. " Come, Master Obediah, 
it thickens now, you're in for it," said I. 

But he was not in the least shaken ; as the matter grew serious, he 
seemed to brace up to meet it He had been flurried at the first, but he 
was collected and cool as a cucumber now, when he saw everything de- 
pending on his seamanship and judgment Not so Paul, who seemed to 
have made up his mind that they must be taken. 

" Jezebel Brandy wine, you are but a widowed old lady, I calculate. I 
riiall never see the broad, smooth Chesapeake again, — no more peach 
brandy for Paul ;" and folding his arms, he set himself doggedly down on 
the low taflerel. 

Little did I think at the time how fearfully the poor fellow's foreboding 
was so soon to be fulfilled. 
*^ There again," said I, " a second puff to windward." This was another 



105 TOM CAIHaLB'l L(0«. 

si^al gi]B» I know ; and I went forward to where the captain was reeon- 
npitrins the sail ahead through the glass. <' Let me see,'* said I, « and I 
will be nonest with you, and tell you if I know her." 

He handed me the glass at once, and the instant I saw the top of her 
bourses above the water, I was sore, from the red cross in her foresail, that 
she was the Firebrand, the very corvette to which I was appointed. Sba 
was so well to windward, that I considered it next to impossible that we 
should weather her, but Obediah seemed detetramed to tiy it. After see- 
ing his little vessel snug under mainsail, foresail, and jib^ which was as much 
as she could stasger under, and eiery thine right and tight, and all clear to 
make more sail slMuld the breese lull, ne ordered the men^low, and took the 
helm himselC What queer animals sailors are ! We were rising the cor* 
^ette fast ; and on going aft again from the bows, where I had been look- 
ing at her, I cast my eye down the hatchway into the men's bcorth, and 




enemy nearly within gunshot astern, and another trying to cot thrai off 
ahead. 

At this moment the schooner in chase luffed up in the wind, and I noticed 
the foot of the foresail lift " You'll have it now, friend Obed ; there's at 
you in earnest" While I spoke, a column of thick white smoke spouted 
over the bows of the Gleam, about twenty yards to windward, and then 
blew back again among the sails and riggMig, as if a gauze veil had for aa 
instant been thrown over the little vessel^ roUing off down the wind to lee- 
ward, in whirling eddies, growing thinner and thinner, until it disappeared 
altogether. I hmrd the report tms time, and the shot fell close alongside 
of as. 

<*A good mark with that apple," coolly observed the captain; <'tbe 
Long Tom must be a tearer, to pitch its mouthful of iron this length." 

Another succeeded ; and if I had been still pinned up in the com- 
panion, there would have been no log now, for it went crash through into 
the hold. 

** G^ it, my boys," shouted I ; << a few more aa well aimed, and heigh for 
the Firebrand's gunroom !" 

At the mention of the Firebrand I thought Obed started, but he soon 
recovered himself, and looking at me with all the apparent composure in 
the world, he smiled as he said, *' Not so fast. Lieutenant ; you and I have 
not diank our last glass of swizzle yet, I guess. If I can but weather that 
chap ahead, I don't fear the schooner." 

The corvette had bv this time answered the signal from the Glea m, a nd 
had hauled ins wind also, so that I did not conceive it possible that the Wave 
could scrape clear, without coming under his broadside. 

"You won't try it, Obed, surely?" 

" Answer me this, and I'll tell you," rejoined he. " Does that corvette 
now carry long 18's or 32-pound carronades 7" 

*' She carries 32-pound corronades." 

" Then you'll not sling your cot in her gunroom this cruise." 

All this time the little Wave was carrying to it gallantly, her jib-boom 
bending like whalebone, and her long slender topmasts whipping about 
like a couple of fishing-rods, as she thrashed at it, sending the spray flash- 
ing over her mast-heads at every pitch ; but notwithstandmg her weatherly 
qinilities, the heavy cross sea, as she drove into it, headed tier off bodily, 
and she could not f>revent the Gleam from creeping up on her weather quar- 
ter, where she peppered away from her long 34-poonder, throwing the shot 
over and over us. 

To tack, therefore, would have been to run into the lion's mouth, and te 



■ 

TOM ceinolb's log. 107 

bear up was equally hopeless, as the corvette, going free, would have chased 
her under water ; the only chance rentaidins was to stand on, and trust to 
the breeze taking off, and try to weather the ship, now about three miles 
distant on our lee bow, braced sharp up on the opposite tack^ and evidently 
quite aware of our game. 

As the corvette and the Wave neared each other, he threw a shot at us 
from the boat gun on his topgallant forecastle, as if to ascertain beyond all 
doubt the extent of our insanity, and whether we were serious in our at- 
tempt to weather him and escape. 

Obed held ri^ht on his course, like gfrtm death. Another bullet whistled 
over out mast-heads, and, with^ the aid of the ^lass, I could see by the 
twinkling of feet, and here and there a busy peenng face through the ports, 
that the crew were at quarters fore and aft, while fourteen marines or so 
were all ready rigged on the poop, and the nettings were bristling through 
the whole length of the ship, witli fifty or sixty small-arm men. 

All this I tSok care to communicate to Obediah. **I say, my good friend, 
I see little to laugh at in all this. If you do go to windward of him at all, 
which I greatly doubt, you will have to cross his fore-foot within pistol- 
shot at the farthest, and then you will have to rasp along his whole broad- 
side of great and small, and they are right well prepared and ready for you, 
that I can tel] you ; the skipper of that ship has had some heoication, I 
suess, in the war on your coast, for he seems up to your tricks, and 1 don't 
doubt but he will tip you the stem, if need be. With as little compunction as 
I would kill a cockroach, devil confound the whole breed ! There, — I see 
his marines and small-arm men handling their firelocks, as thick as spar- 
rows under the lee of a hedge in a snow-storm, and the people are training 
the bull-dogs fore and aft. Why, this is downright, stark, staring lunacy. 
Obed ; we shall be smashed like aTveo;gshell, and all hands of us whipped 
ofTto Davy, from your cursed foolhardmess." 

I had made several pauses in my address, expecting an answer, but 
Obed was mute as a stone. At length T took the glass from my eye, and 
turned round to look at him, startled by his silence. 

I might have heard of such things, but I had never before seen the working 
of the spirit so forcibly and fearfully demonstrated by the aspect of the outr 
ward man. With the exception of myself, he was the only man on deck, 
as before mentioned, and by this time he was squatted down on it, with his 
long legs and thighs thrust down into the cabin, through the open skylight. 
The little vessel happened to carry a weather helm, so that his long sinewy 
arms, with their large veins and leaders strained to cracking, covered but a 
small way below the elbow by his jacket, were stretched as far as they 
could clutch the tiller to windward, and his enormous head^ supported on 
his very short trunk, that seemed to be countersunk into the deck, gave him 
a most extraordinary appearance. But this was not all ; his complexion, 
usually sallow and sunburnt, was now ghastly and blue, like that of the 
corpse of a drowned man ; the muscles of the neck, and the flesh of the 
cheeks and^chin were rigid and fixed, and shrunk into one half of their 
usaal compass ; the lips were so compressed that they had almost entirely 
disappeared, and all that marked his mouth was a black line ; the nostrils 
were distended, and thin and transparent, while the forehead was shrivelled 
into the most minute and immovable wrinkles, as if done with a crimping 
instrument, while over his eyes, or rather his eye, for he kept one closed as 
if it had been hermetically sealed, he had lashed with half a dozen turns of 
Spun-yarn a wooden socket, like the butt-end of an opera glass, fitted with 
some sort of magnifier, through which he peered out ahead most intensely, 
stoopin V down, and stretching his long bare neck to its utmost reach, that 
lie might gee under the foot ot the foresail. 

I had scarcely time to observe all this, when a round ahot came through 
8« 



,106 TOM CAUrOLl's IXM. 

tlie head of the mainsail, grazing the mast, and the reacj next insUat a 
bashel of grape, from one of the bow gons, a 32-poiud eanonade, wm 
crashed in on us amidships. I flung down the glass, and dived through 
the companion into the cabin — I am not ashamed to own it ; and any man 
who would undervalue my coun^ in consequence, can never, taking into 
consideration the peculiarities ormy situation, have known the appalling 
sound or infernal effect of a discharge of grape. Round shot in nroact 
sides is a joke to it ; musketry is a ioke to it ; but only conjure up in your 
imagination a shower of iron bullets, of the size of well-grown plumsi 
to tl^ number of from sixty to one hundred and twenty, taking effect within 
a circle not above ten feet in diameter, and that ail this tmne there was 
neither honomr nor glory in the case, for I was a miserable captive, and I 
fancy I may save myself the trouble of farCher enlargement 

I fomid that the crew had by this time started and taken up the planktf 
of the cabin floor, and had stowed themselves well down into the run, so as 
to be as much out of harm's way as they could manage, but there was 
neither fear nor flinching among them ; and altiiough totally devoid of all 

Sasconade — on the contrary, they had taken all the precautions men could 
in their situation, to keep out of harm's way, or at least to lessen the 
danger — there they sat, silent, and cool, and determined. " I diall never 
undervalue an American as an enemy asain," thought I. I lay down on 
the side of the little vessel, now nearly kvel as she lay over, aloneside of 
Paul Brandywine, in a position that commanded a view of ObecTs face 
through the small scuttle. Ten minutes might have elapsed — a tearing 
crash — and a rattle on the deck overhead, as if a shower of stones had 
been thrown from alofl on it. 

" That's through the mainmast, I expect," qnoth Paul. 

I looked from nim to the captain : a black thick stream of blood wa9 
trickhng down behind his ear. Paul had noticed it also. 

** You are hurt by one of them splinters, I see ; give me the helm now. 
Captain ;" and, crushed down as the poor fellow appeared to be under some 
fearful and mysterious consciousness of impendmg danger, he nevertheless 
addressed himself to take his captain's place. 

'*Hold your blasted tongue" — was tne polite rejoinder. 

** I say. Captain," — shouted your humble servant, *' you may as well 
eat peas with a pitchfork, as try to weather him. You are hooked, man, 
flounder as you will. Old Nick can't shake you clear — so 1 won't stand 
this any longer ;" and making a spring, I jammed myself through the sky* 
light, until I sat on ^e deck, looking ut, and confronting him, and there we 
were, stuck up like the two kings of Brentford, or a couple of smiling eher^ 
ries on one stalk. I have often laughed over the figure we must have cut, 
but at the time Uiere was that going on that would nave made Comas him- 
self look grave. I had at length fairly roused- the sleeping devil within 
him. 

'* Look out f Acre, Lieutenant — look out there," ~ and he pointed with 
his sinister claw down to leeward. I did so — whew f — what a sight for 
poor Master Thomas Cringle ! << You are booked for an outSide place. 
Master Tommy," thought 1 to myself — for there was the corvette in very 
truth — she had just ta^cd, and was close aboard of us on our lee q^uarter, 
within musket-shot at the farthest, bowling along upon a wind, with the 
^reen, hissing, multitudinous sea surging along her sides, and washing up 
m foam, like snow flakes, through the midship ports, far ail on the quarter- 
deck, to the glorification of Jack, who never minds a wet jacket, so Ions 
as he witnesses the discomfiture of his ally, Peter Pipeclay. The press m 
canvass she was carrying laid her over, until her copper sheathins, clear as 
slass, and glancing like gold, H-as seen high above tne water, tnrougbout 
Eer whole fingtfa, above whidh rode bar ^ossy jet black bends, surmounted 



TOM OfttiraLB'6 LOO. 109 

by a milk-wh^stroak, broken at regular intervalB into eleven goodl^jr ports, 
from which tiie Bikish cannon, ugly customers at the best, were grinning, 
tompion oat, open-mouthed at us ; and. above all, the clean, wefl-stowed 
white hammocks filled the nettings, from tafferel to cathead — oh ! that 1 
had beea in one of them, snug on the berth deck ! Aloft, a cloud 
of white sail swelled to the breeze, till the cloth seemed inchned to say 
eood-by to the bolt ropes, bending the masts like willow-wands, (as if the 
devil, determined to beat Paganini himself, was preparing fiddlesticks to 
play a spring with, on the cracking and straining weather shrouds and 
oackstays,) and tearing her sharp wedge-like bows out of the bowels of 
the long swell, until the cutwater, and ten jrards of the keel next to it, wera 
hove clean oat of the sea, into which she would descend again with a roaring 
plunge, burying everything up to the hause^holes, and driving the brine 
mto mist over lEe fore^'top, nke vapour from a waterfall, throng which, as 
she rose again, the bright red copper on her bows flashed back the sun* 
beams in momentary rainbows. We were so near, that I coukl with the 
naked eye distinctly see the faces of the men. - There were at least 1$0 
determined fellows at quarters, and clustered with muskets in their hands 
wherever they could be posted to most advantage. 

There they were in groups about the ports, (I could even see the cap- 
tains of the guns, examining the locks, in their clean white frocks and 
trousers, the officers of the ship and the mariens clearly distinguishable by 
their blue or red iacketd. / could ^eem the very tvarkle of the epaulet$. 

High overhead, the red cross, that for a thousana years " has braved the 
battle and the breeze," blew out strong from the peak, like a sheet of flicker* 
ing white flame, or athingintisnct with life, struggling to tear away the ensign 
haulyards, and to escape high into the clouds ; whHe, from the main-royal- 
masthead, the long white pennant streamed upwards into the azure heavens, 
like a ray of silver U^ht Oh! it was a sight '^most beautiful to see," 
as the old song hath it, — but I confess I would have preferred that plea^ 
sure from t'other side of the hedge* 

There was no hailing nor trumpeting, although, as we crossed on oppo- 
site tacks when we first weathered her, just before she hove in stays, I bad 
heard a shrill voice sing out, *' Take good aim, men —Fire ;** but now each 
cannon in thunder shot forth jts glance of flame, without a word being ut- 
tered, as she kept away to bring them to bear in succession, while the long 
feathery cloud of whining white smoke that shrouded her sides from stem 
to stern was sparkling brilliantly throughout with crackling musketry, foi 
all the world like fire -flies in a bank of night fog from the hills, until the 
breeze blew it back again through the rig^g, and once more unveiled th* 
lovely craft in all her pride and ^oiy. 
'' You see all that r said Obed. 

*< To be sure I do, and I feel something too ;" for a sliarp rasping jar was 
repeated in rapid succession three or four times, as so many shot struck 
our hull, and made the splinters glance about merrily ; and the musket-balls 
were mottling our top sines and spars, plumping into the timber, whit, whit ! 
tA thick a^ ever yoa saw schoolboys plastering a church door with clay 
pellets. There was a heavy groan, and a stir among the seamen in the 
run. 

'* And, pray, do you see and hear all that yourself^ Master Obed ? The 
iron has clenched some of your chaps down there. — Stay a bit, you shall 

have a better dose presently, jpou obstinate old " 

He waved his hand, and interrupted me with great energy — **1 dare not 
give in, I cannot give in ; all I have in the world swims in the little hooker, 
iad stnke 1 ¥rill not so long as two planks stick together. 
** Then," quoth I, *<yoa are simply a damned, cold-blooded, calculating 



HO rou cRiKfiLfi'iB Loa. 

Boouncfrel — brave I will never call you." I saW he waa now Btong to the 
quick. 

** Lieuteoant, smuggler aa 1 am, don't goad me to what worse I may 
have been ; there are some deeds done in my time, which at a moment like 
this I don't much Uk€ to think upon. I am a desperate man, Master Crin- 
gle ; don't, for your own sake, as well as mine, try me too far." 

" Well but " persisted I. He would hear nothing. 

(* Enough said, sir, enough said ; there was not an honester .Uader nor 
a happier man in all the Union, until your infernal pillaging and burning 
squadron in the Chesapeake captured and ruined me ; but ipfud it off on 
the prize-master, although we were driven on the rocks after alL I paid it 
off, and God help me I have never thiven since, enemy although he was. 
I see the poor fellow's face yet, as I — - " He checked himself suddenly, as 
if aware that he might say more than could be conveniently retracted. 
** But I d€tre not be taken ; let that satisfy you, Mast^ Cringle, so go below 
— below with you, sir" ~ I saw he had succeeded in lashing himself into a 
fury — *< or, by the Almighty God, who hears me, I shall be tempted to do 
another deed the remembrance of which will haunt m^ till my dymg day." 

All tliis passed in no time, as we say, much quicker than one can read 
it ; and I now saw that the eorrette had braced up sharp to the wind again, 
on the same tack that we were on ; so I slipped aown like an eel, and once 
more stretohed myself beside Paul> on the lee side of tits cabin. We soon 
found that she was indeed aiter us in earnest, by the renewal of the can- 
nonade, and the breezing up of the small arms again. Two round shot 
now tore right through the aeek, just beneath the larboard coamings of the 
main hatohway ; tfaie little vessel's deck, as she lav over, being aftogether 
exposed to the enemy's fire, they made her whole frame tremble again, 
smashing everything m their way to shivers, and going right out through 
her bottom on the opposite.side, within a dozen streaks of ner keel, while 
the rattling of the clustered grapeshot every now and then made us start, 
the musquetry all the while peppering away like a hail shower. Still the 
skipper, who f expected every moment to see pufied away frofn the tiller 
like smoke, held upon deck as if he had been bullet-proof, and seemed to 
escape the hellish tornado of missiles of all sorts and sizes by a miracle. 

" He is in league with the old one, Paul," said I ; '* howsoever, you must 
be nabbed, for you see the ship is forereaching on you, and you can't go on 
f other tack, surely, with these pretty eyelet-holes between -wind and water 
»nthe weather side there? Your captain is mad — why will you^ then, 
uid all these poor felloes, go down, because he dart net surrender, for some 
good deed of his own, eh ?" 

The roar of the cannon and noise of th^ musketrv made it necessary for 
me to raise my voice here, which the small scuttle, like Dionysius's ear, 
conveyed unexpectedl)r to my friend, the captain, on deck. 

^ Hand me up my pistols, Paul." 

It had struck mp before, and I was now certain, that irom the time he 
had become so intensely excited as he was now, he spoke with a pure 
English accent, without the smallest dash of Yankeeism. 

" So, so ; I see — no wonder you won't strik^, you renegade," cried I. 

*' You have tampered with my crew, sir, and abused me," he announced 
in a stem, slow tone, much more alarming than his former fierceness,^ '* so 
take that, to quiet you ; and deuce take me if he did not, the moment he re- 
ceived the pistols from his mate, fire slap at me, the ball piercing the large 
muscle of my neck, on the right side, missing the artery by the merest ac- 
cident Thinking I was done for, 1 covered m^ face with my hands, and 
commended myself to God, with all the resi^ation that could be expected 
from a poor young fellow in my grievous cucumstances, expecting to be 
cat off m the prima vera of ^ days, and to part for ever from—- Poo^ 



TOM cftnroLi's Loa. Ill 

tint there line is not my forte. Uowerer, finding the hemonlimge by no 
means great, and that the wound was in fact slight, I took the captain's 
mther strons hint to be stilly and lay auiet, untila 38-pomid diot struck 
us bang on the quarter. The subdued force with which it came, showed 
that we were widening our distance, for it did not drive through and through 
with a crash, but lodged in a timber; nevertheless it started one of the 
i^anks across which FwA and I lay, and pitched us both with extreme vio- 
lenee bodily into the run among the men, three of them lying amons the 
ballast, which was covered with blood, two badly wounded, and one dead. 
I came off with some slight bruises, however ; not so the poor mate. He 
had been nearest the end or butt that was started, which thereby struck him 
so forcibly, that it fractured .his spine, and dashed him among his ship- 
mates, shrieking piercingly in his great agony, and clutching whatever he 
could grasp with his hands, and tearing whatever he could reach with his 
teeth, while his Umbs below his waist were dead and paralyzed. 

'*Oh, Christ! water, water," he cried, '* water, for the love of God, 
water !*' The crew did all they could ; but his torments increased — the 
blood began to flow from his mouth — his hands became clay-cold and 
pulseless — his features sharp, blue, and death-like — his respiration diffi- 
cult — the choking death-rattle succeeded, and in ten minutes ne was dead. 

This was the last shot that told — every report became more and more 
faint, and the musquetry soon ceased altojgether. 

The breeze had taken oflj and the IVave^ lesoming bar superiority in 
lig^ winds, had ewi^ped. 



CHAPTER IX. 

CUBA nSBXRlfSH. 

« El Pescador de Puerto Esoondido 

Pmca mas que Pescado 
Auando la Luna redonda 
Reflexado en la mar profunda. 
Pero cuidado, 

El pobre sera el nine perdido 
SI e«ta por Jinglieman cojido. 

Ay de ml." 

It was now five in the afternoon, and the breeze continued to fall, and the 
sea to go down, until sunset, by which time we had run the corvette h«dl 
down, and the schooner neariy out of sipht Right ahead of us rose the high 
land of Cuba, to the westward of Cape Maize, clear and well-defined against 
the northern sky ; and as we neither hauled our wind to weather the east end 
of the island, nor edged away for St Jago, it was evident, beyond all doubt, 
that we were running right m for some one of the pimtical haunts on the 
Cuba coast. 

The crew now set to work, and removed the remains of their late mess- 
mate, and the two wounded men, from where they lay upon the ballast in the 
run, to their own berth forward in the bows of the little vessel ; they then 
replaced the planks which they had started, and arranged the dead body o*' 
the mate alon^ the cabin floor, close to where I lay, faint and bleeding, and 
more heavily bruised than I hsid at first thought 

The captain was still at the helm ; he had never spoken a word either to 
me or any of the erew, since he had taken the trifling Uberty of shooting 
ne throu^ the neck, and no thanks to him that the wound was not mortal ; 



112 TOM CRIirOLs's L0«. 

but he now resumed his American accent, and began to drawl out the ne> 
cessary orders for repairing damages. 

When I went on deck soortly afterwards, 1 was surprised beyond mea> 
sure to peroeive the injury the little vessel had sustained, and the uncom- 
mon speed, handinesB, and skill, with which it had been repaired. How- 
ever lazily the command, might appear to have been ^ven, the execution 
0^ it was quick as Ughtnin^. Tne crew, now reduced to ten working 
hands, had with an almost miraculous promptitude, knotted and spliced the 
rigsins, mended and shifted suls, fished the sprung and wounded spars, 
and plugged and nailed lead over the shot-holes, and all within haif an 
hour. 

After the captain had ^ven his orders,, and seen the men fairly at work,, 
he came down to the cabin, still ghastly and pale, but with none of that 
ferocity stamped on his grim features, irom the outpouring of which I had 
suffered so severely. He never once looked my way, no more than if I 
had been a bundle of old junk ; but folding his hands on his knee, he 
sat down on a small locker, against which the feet of the dead mate rested^ 
And gazed earnestly on his tace, which was immediately under the open 
skylight, through which, by this time, the clear cold rays of the moon 
streamed full on it. the short twilight having already fled, chained as it is in 
these climates to the chariotrwheeTs of the burning sun. My eye naturally 
followed his, but I speedily withdrew it I had often bent over com* 
rades who had been killed by gun-shot wounds, and always remarked, 
what is well-known, that the features wore a benign expression, bland ana 
gentle, and contented as the face of a sleeping mfant, while their limba 
were composed decently, often gracefully, like one resting after a great 
fatigue, as if nature, like an afiectionate nurse, had arranged the deathbed 
of her departing child with more than usual care, preparatory to Ms last 
long sleep ; whereas those who had died from the thrust of a pike, or the 
blow of a cutlass, however mild the living expression of their countenance 
might have been, were always fearfully contorted both in body and face. 

In the present instance, the eyes were wide open, white, prominent, and 
slazed like those of a dead fish ; the hair, which was remarkably fine, and 
had been worn in long ringlets, among which a large gold ear-ring glit- 
tered, the poor fellow having been a nautical dandy of the first water, was 
drenched and clotted into heavy masses with the death-sweat, and had 
fallen back on the deck from his forehead, which was well-formed, high, 
broad, and massive. His nose was transparent, Uun, and sharpy the tense 
skin on the bridge of it glancing in the silver Ught, as if it had been 
^ass. His mouth was puckered on one side into angular wrinkles, like a 
curtain drawn up awry, while a clotted\ stream of black gore crept from 
it sluggishly down his right cheek, and coagulated in a heap oh the deck. 
His rower jaw had fallen, and there he lay agape with his mouth full o£ 
blood. 

His le^s, indeed his whole body below his loins, where the fracture of the 
spine had taken place, rested precisely as they had been arranged after he 
died ; but the excessive swelling and pufiingout of his broad chest contrasted 
shockingly with the shrinking of the body at the pit of the stomach, by which 
the arch of the ribs was left as well defined as if the skin had been drawn 
over a skeleton, and the distortion of the muscles of the cheeks and throat 
evinced the fearful strength of the convulsions which had preceded his dis- 
solution. It was evident, indeed, that throughout his whole person above the 
waist, the nervous system had been utterly shattered ; the arms, especially^, 
appeared to have been awfully distorted, for when crossed on his breast, 
they had to be forcibly fastened down at the wrists by a band of spun-yarn 
to the buttons of his ucket His right hand was shu^ with the exception of 
the fore-finger, which was extended, pointing upwards ; but the whole arm^. 



TOM cbiholb's loo. 113 

from the shoulder down, had the horrible appearance of struggUng to get 
free from the cord which confined it 

Obed, by the time I had noticed all this, had knelt beside the shoulder of 
the corpse, and I coald see by the moonlight that flickered across his face as 
the vessel rolled in the declining breeze, that he bad pushed off fais eye the 
UQcouth spyglass which he had fastened over it during the chase, so that it 
now stood out from the middle of his forehead like a stunted horn ; but, in 
trath, ^' it was not exalted," for he appeared crushed down to the very earth 
by the sadness of the scene before him, and I noticed the frequent sparkle 
01 a heavy tear as it fell from hie iron visage on the face of the dead man. 
At length he untied the string that fastened the eye-glass round his head, 
and takmg a coarse towel from a locker, he sponged poor Paul's face and 
neck with rum, and then fastened up his lower jaw with the lanyard. Hav- 
ing performed this melancholy office, the poor fellow's feelings could no 
longer be restrained by my presence. 

'* God help me, I have not now one friend in the wide world. When I had 
neither home, nor food, nor clothing, he sheltered me, and fed me, and clothed 
me, when a single word would have gained him five hundred dollars, and run 
me up to the foreyard arm in a wreath of white smoke ; but he was true as 
steel ; and oh that he was now doing for me what I have done for him ! 
who would have moaned over me, -^ me, who am now without wife or 
child, and have disgraced all mv kin ! alack-a-day, alack-a-day !*' — And 
he sobbed and wept aloud, as if his very 'heart would have burst in twain. 
— •* But 1 will soon follow you, Paul ; I have had my warning already ; I 
know it, and I believe it»" At this instant the dead hand of the mate burst 
the ligature that kept it down across his body, and slowly rose up and re- 
mained in a beckoning attitude. I was seized with a cold shivering from 
head to foot, and would have shrieked aloud, had it not been for very shame, 
but Obed was unmoved. — "I know it, Paul I know it. I am ready, and 
shall not be long behind you." 

He fastened tne arm down once more, and having called a couple of 
hands to assist him, they lashed up the remains of their shipmate m his 
hammock, with a piece of iron ballast at his feet, and then, without more 
ado, handed the body up through the skylight ; and I h€«rd the heavy 
splash as they cast it into the sea. When tms was done, the captain re- 
turned to Uie cabin, bringing a light with him, filled and drank off a glass 
of strong grog. Yet he did not even now deign to notice me, which was 
by no means soothing ; and I found that, since Ae wouldn't speak / must, 
at all hazards. 

^ I say, Obed, do you ever read your Bible ?" He looked steadily at 
me with his lacklustre eyes. <* Because, if vou do, you may perhaps have 
fallen in with some such passages as the following : — ** Behold I am in 
your hand ; but know ye for certain, that if ye put me to death, ye shall 
surely bring innocent blood upon yourselves.'" 

" It is true, Mr. Cringle, I feel the truth of it here," and he laid his large 
bony hand on his heart ^* Yet I do not ask you to forgive me ; I don't 
expect that you can or will ; but unless the devil gets possession of me 
a^n — which so sure as ever there was a demoniac in tnis world, he had 
this afternoon when you so tempted me — 1 hope soon to place you in 
Mifety, either in a friendly port, or on board of a British vessel ; and then 
^vhat becomes of me is of Uttle consequence, now since the only living 
■oul who cared a dollar for me is at rest among the coral branches at the 
^"bottom of the deep ^een sea." 

'* Why, man," rejoined I, '< leave off this stuff; something has turned 
your brain, surely ; people must die in their beds, you know, if they b* 
not shot, or put out of the way somehow or other ; and as for my small 
•ffiur, why I forgive you, man — from my heart I forgive you ; were it only 



114 lOM CftiiroLx's L(M« 

Ibr the oddity of your waintlmg, montal and corporeal, I would 4o so ; aad' 
you Bee I am not much hurt, —so lend roe a hand, like a good fellow, to 
waah the wound with a Uttle spirits — it will stop the bleeding, and the 

•tiflness will soon go off— so " 

'* Lieutenant Cringle, I need not tell, what I know tou have fbund out, 
that [ am noi the vulgar Yankee smugger, fit only to be made a butt of by 
you and your friends, that you no doubt at first took me for ; but who er 
what I am, or what I may have been, you idiall never know — bat I wiH 
tell you this much — — '* 

** Devil confound the fellow ! — why this is too much upon the bTogtM^ 
Obed. Will you help me to dress my wound, man, and leave off your 
cursed sentimental speeches, which you must have gleaned from some M 
novel or another 7 PU hear it all by and by.'* 

At this period I was a reckless young chap, with strong nerves, and lay 
own share of that animal courage, which generally oosee out at one's fin- 
ger ends when one gets marriea and turned of thirty ; nevertheleas I did 
watch with some anxiety the e^ct which my unceremonious intermptioB 
was to have upon him. I was agreeably surprised to find that he took it 
all in good part, and set himself, with great alacrity, and kindness even, te 
put me to rights, and so successfully, that when I was washed and cleansed, 
and fairly coopered up, I found myself quite able to take my place at the 
table; and having no fear of the College of Surgeons before my eyes, I 
helped myself to a little of the needful, and in the plenitude of my heart, 
I asked Obed's pardon for my ill-bred interruption. 

" It tras not ooite the thing to cut you short in the middle of your New* 
gate Calendar, Obed— beg pardon, your story I mean , no oi^ce now, 
none in the world — eh 7 But where the deuccL man, got you this fine 
linen of Egypt 7" looking at the sleeves of the stiirt Ob^ had obliged me 
with, as I sat without my coat " I had not dreamt you had anytmng bo 
luxurious in your kit" 

1 saw his brow begin to lower again, so the devil prompted me to advert 
by way of changing the subject, to a file of newspapers, which, as it tumea 
out, might have proved to be by far the most dangerous topic I could have 
hit upon. He laid them aside, having taken them out of the locker when 
he was rummaging for the linen. "What have we here? — Kingsttm 
Chronicle, Montego Bay Gazette, Falmouth Advertiser. A great news- 
monger you must be. What arrivals 7 — let rae see ; — you know 1 am a 
week from head quarters. Let me see." 

At first he made a motion as if be would have snatched them out of my 
hands, but speedily appeared to give up the idea, merely murmuring-* 
" What can it signify now ?" 

I continued to read — "Chanticleer from a cruise — Tonnant from Bar- 
badoes — Pique from Port-au-Prince. Oh, the next interests me—- the 
Firebrand is daily expected from Havana ; she is to come through &e 
gulf, round Cape Antonio, and beat up the haunts of the pirates all along the 
Cuba shore." 1 was certain nmo that at the mention or this corvette mine 
host winced in earnest This made me anxious to probe him farther. 
" Why, what means this pencil mark — ' Firebtand^s number off the Che*> 
apeake was 1083 7' How the deuce, my fine fellow, do yon know that 7** 

He shook his head, but said nothing, and I went on reading the pencil 
memoranda — "<But this is most probably changed ; she now carries a 
red cross in the head of her foresail, and has very short lower masts, like 
the Hornet' " Still he made me no answer. 1 proceeded — "Stop, let 
me see what merchant ships are about sailing. * Loading for Liverpool, 
the John Gladstone, Peter Ponderous, master ;' " and uker it, again m 
pencil — "* Only sugar: goes through the gulf.'— 0»?y su&ar," said I, 
•till fishing; "too bulky, 1 Biippose.-^< Ariel, J^Bkins, Whitahaven;*'* 



ton CBINaLB^ L(Mk 116 

ftmtilc — << < Bugar, oofi^, afitd logwood.* * NuestntSaiioratie los DotoreB, 
to sail for Chagres on 7th proxiino ;"* refnaik — *** rich .cargo of bal« 
goods, but no chance of orertaking her.' " — ** ''£1 Ra^cO'to sail for St Jago 
ae Cuba on the 10th proximo ;' '* remark — '* '* sails fast ; aimed with a lon^ 
gun and musketry : thirty hands ; abotft ten Spanish passen^ra ; yal»* 
able cargo of dry goods ; mainmast rakes well aft; new cloth. in the fore- 
sail about half-way up ; will be off the Moio aboat the 13th.' «- And what 
is this written in ink under the above ? — > < The San Pedro from Chagres 
and Marianita from Santa Martha, although rich, have both got oonVoy.* 
— Ah, too strong for your friends, Obed — I see, I seti". — * Francis Baring, 
Loan French, niaster * -* an odd name, rather, for .a skipper ;" remark -^ 

* ** forty ceroons of cochineal and Some specie ; is to sail from Morant Bay 
on 5th proximo, to go through the windward pass&^e ; may be expected off 
Cape St Nicholas on the 12th, or thereby.' " I laid down the pitper and 
looked^ him full in the face. '* Nicholas is an ominous name. I fear the 
good ship Francis Baring will find it so. Some of the worthy saint's clerks 
to be fallen in with off the Mole, eh? Don't you think as I do, Obed 1» 
Still silent. ^ Why you seem to take ^eat delight in noting the intended 
departures and expected arrivals, my friend — merely to satisfy your curi^ 
osity, of course ; but, to come to close quarters with you. Captain, I now 
know pretty well the object of your visiting*Jamaiea now ana then, — you 
are indeed no vulgar stmigglerJ" 

" It is well for you iuia good for myself, Mr. Cringle, that sotnetbing 
weighs heavy at my heart at this moment, and that there is that about you 
whicti, notwithstanding your ill-timed jesting, commands my respect, and 
engages my good- will — had it not been so, you would have been along- 
side of poor Paul at this moment." He leaned his arms upon the table, 
aad gazed intensely on my face, as he continued in a solemn tremulous 
tone — « Do you believe in auguries, Mr. Cringle ! Do you believe that 

* coming; events cast theif' shadows before?'*'— Oh, that little Wiggy 
Campbell had been beside me to have seen the figure and face of tbo man 
ivho now quoted him ! 

'* Yes, i do, it is part of the creed of every sailor to do so ; I do believe 
that people have had forewarnings of peril to themselves or their friends.'' 

"Then what do you think of £e mate beckoning me with his dead hand 
to follow him?" 

** Why, you are raving, Obed ; you saw that he had been much con- 
vulsed, and that the limb, from the contraction of the sinews, was forcibly 
kept down in the position it broke loose from — the spun-yarn gave way, 
and of course it started up — nothing wonderful in all this, although it dm 
at the time somewhat startle me, I confess." . 

" It may be so, it may be so. I don't know," rejoined he, « but taken 

along; with What I saw before " Here his voice sank into so hollow and 

sepulchral a tone as to be almost unintelli^ble. '* But there is no use in 
arguing on the subject Answer me this, Lieutenant Cringle, and truly, so 
help you God at your utmost need, did Uu mate leave the cabin Mt any m»' 
nent afier J was wounded by the splinter ?** And he seized one or my hands 
convulsively with his iron paw, while he pointed up through the open scut- 
tle towards heaven with the other, which trembled like a reed. The moon 
shone strong on the upper part of his countenance, while the yellow smoky 
glare oi* the candle over which he bent, blending harshly and unharmom- 
ously with the pale silver light^ fell full on his uncouth figure, and on hifl 
W^ scraggy bare neck and chm and cheeks, giving altogether a most un^ 
.Mrtnly expression to his savage features, from tl£ conflicting tints and 
changing shadows cast by the flickering moonbeams streaming fitfully 
through the skylight, as the vessel rolled to and fro, and by the large torch* 
Hke candle as it wavered m the night wind. The prince of tho powers of 
45—1 



116 XOM CEIirOLB's LOOi 

the air might bare sat for his picture by proxy* It was just such a face c« 
one has dreamed of after a hot supperand cold ale, when the whisky had 
been forgotten ~^ honible, changing, vague, glimmering, and undefined ; 
and as if something was still wantins to complete the utter frightfulness ttf 
his aspect, the splinter wotmd in his head burst out afresh from his violent 
agitation, and streamed down in heavy drops from his forehead, falling warm 
on my hand. I was much shaken at being adjured in this tremendous way, 
with jLhe hot blood glewing our hands ^together^ but I returned his grasp aa 
steadily as I could, while I replied, with all the composure he had left moi 
and that would not have quite tilled a Winchester bushel, — 

" Ht never UJl my side from the time he offered to take your place qfter you 
had been wounded,^* 

He fell back asainst the locker as if he had been shot through the heart. 
Qis grasp relaxed, he drew his breath very bard, and I thought he had fainted. 

^ Then it was not him that stood by me ; I thought it might have been 
him, but I was a fool, it was impossible." 

He made a desperate effort to recover bis composure, and succeeded. 

"And, pray. Master Obediah," quoth I, " what did you see ?*' 

He answered me sharply — " Never mind, never mind — here, Potomac, 
lend us a hand to sling a cot for this sentleman ; there now, see the lanyaid 
is sound, and the lacing all tight and snug — now put that mattress into 
it, and there is linen in the chest.** 

In a trice my couch was rigged, all comfortable, snow-white linen, nice 

Eillow, soft mattress, &c.. and Obed, filUnfi; me another tumbler, helped 
imself also ; he then drank to my health, nTshed me a sound sleep, promis- 
ed to call me at daylight, and as he left the cabin he said, ** Mr. Cringle, had it 
been my object to have injured you, I would not have waited until now. 
You are quite- safe so far as depends on me, so take your rest — good night, 
once more.'' 

I tumbled into bed, and never once opened mine eyes until Obed called . 
me at daylight, that is, at five in the morning, acceding to his promise. 

By this time we were well in with the Cuba shore ; the land might be two 
miles from us, as we could see the white surf. Out at sea, although all 
around was dear as crystal, there was nothing to be seen of the Gleam 
or Firebrand, but there were ten or twelve fishmg canoes, each manned 
with from four to six hands, close aboard of us ; — we seemed to have got 
becalmed in the middle of a small fleet of them. The nearest to us haued 
in Spanish, in a very friendly way. 

" Como estamos Capitan, que hay de nuevo ; hay also de bueno, para 
loe pobres Pescadores ?" and the fellow who had spoken ^Lushed loudly. 

The captain desired him to come on board, and then drew him aside, 
conversins earnestly with him. The Spanish fisherman was a very power- 
ful man ; ne was equipped in a blue cotton shirt, Osnaburg trousers, san- 
dals of untanned bullock's hide, a straw hat, and wore the eternal greasy 
red sash and long knife. He was a bold, daring-looking fellow, and fire- 

auently looked frowningly on me, and shook his head impatiently, while 
le captain, as it seemed, was explaining to him who I was. Just in this 
nick of time my friend Potomac handed up my uniform coat, (I had previ- 
ously been performing my ablutions on deck in iny shirt and trousers,) which 
I put on, swab and all, thinking no harm. But there must have been 
mighty great offence nevertheless, for the fisherman, in a twinkling, casting 
a fierce look at me, jumped overboard like a feather, clearing the rail like ft 
flying fish, and swam to his canoe, that had shoved off a few paces. 

when he »>t on board he stood up and shook his clinched fist at Obed, 
shouting, ^'Ficaro, traidor, In^leses hay abordo, qoieres enganamos !** 
He then held up the blade of his paddle, a signal which all the canoes 
answered in a moment in the same manner, and then pulled tqwards the 



ton CEIHftliK's IjOG. 117 

iind, firom whence a felucca, invisible until that moment, now swept out, 
M if she had floated up to the surface by magic, for I could aee neither 
creek nor indentation on the shore, nor the smallest symptofn of any en- 
tnmce to a port or cove. For a few minutes the canoes olustered round this 
necronaaQtic craft, and I could notice that two or three hands from each of 
them jui^ped on board ; they then paddled off in a string, and vanished 
one by one among the mangrove bushes as suddenly as the felucca had ap- 
peared. All this puzzled me exceedingly — I looked at Obed — he was 
evidently sorely perplexed. 

I had thou^t to nave put you on board a British vessel before this, or 
failing that, to have run down, and landed you at St Jago, Mr. Cringle, as 
I promised ; but you see I am prevented by these honest men there. Get 
below, and as you value your liife, and, I may say, mine, keep your 'temper, 
and be civiL'^ 

I did as he suggested, but peeped out of the cabin skvU^ht to see what 
was going on, notwithstanding. The felucca was armed with a heavy car- 
Hmaae on a pivot, and as full of men as she could hold, fierce, half naked, 
savage-looking fellows, — she swept rapidly up to us, and dosing on our 
Isiboard quarter, threw about five-and-twenty of her genteel young people 
on board, who immediately secured the crew, and seized Obed. However, 
they, that is, the common sailors, seemed to have no great stomach for the 
job, and had it not been for the fellow I had frightened overboard, I don't 
tlunk one of them would have touched him. Obed bore all this with great ' 
equanimity. 

** Why, Francisco," he said, to this personage, in good Spanish, " why, 
what madness is this ? your suspicions are groundless ; it is as I tell you, he 
is my prisoner, and whatever he may have been to me, he can be no spy on 
you." 

''Ouchillo entonces," was the savage reply. . 

'* No, no," persisted Obediah, <* get cool, man, get cool ^ I am pledged 
that no harm shall come to him ; and futher I have promised to put Eim 
•shore at St. Jago, and I will be as good as my word." 

'* You canU if vou would," rejoined Francisco ; '* the Snake is at anchor 
mder the Moro,'' 

'* Then he must go with us." 

^ We shall see as to that," said the other ; then raising his voice, he 
cihouted to his ragamuffins,. *' Comrades, we are betrayed ; there is an 
Bndish officer on board, who can be nothing but a spy ; follow me !" 

And he dashed down the compamon ladder, knife in hand, while I sprung 
tlffough the small scuttle, like a rat out of one hole when a ferret is put in 
at the other, and crept as cloee^ to Obed as I could ; Francisco, when he 
missed me, came on deck again. The captain had now seized a cutlass in 
one hand, and held a cocked pistol in the other. It appeared he had 
greater control, the nature of which 1 now began to comprdiend, over the 
lelncca's people, than Fracisco bargained for, as the moment the latter went 
l>0low, they released him, and »went forward in a body. My persecutor 
•gun advanced close up to me, seized me by the collar with one hand, 
•od tried to drag me forward, brandishing his naked knife aloft in the 
other. 

Obed promptly caught his sword-arm — ** Francisco," he exclaimed, still 
in Spanish, '* fool, m^man, let go your hold ! let go, or by the heaven 
Above us, and the hell we are both hastening to, I will strike you dead !" 

The man paused, and looked round to his own people, and seeing one 
or two encouraging glances and gestures among them, he again attempted 
to drag me away from my hold on the tafierel. Something flashed in the 
^ and the man fell ! His left arm, the hand of which still clutched my 
wit, wlttle mine grasped iti wrist, had been shied from his body by Obed'f 



118 

OrtlML like a twig ; and, O Qod, mj bkwd eoidles to iny besit ereD now 
iHienl tUnk of it! the detd fingCTs keM the gi»Bp wiflicieBtly kng to iflow 
tbe arm to fall bcATily apaioat my nae, wlxre it hung for omdo aecondi^ 
ontil the OMisdea relaiedand it dropped on the deck. The inatant that 
Obed elmck the Mow, he caaght hold of my band, threw away hia catiaas, 
and advanced towards the group of the feiocca^s men, uglUA in hand. 

** Am I not yoar captain, ye cowards — have 1 ever deceived you yet*- 
have I ever flinched from heading yon where the danger was greatest-* 
havQ you not all that I am worth m your hands ; and will you mmderma 
iiow?'» 

*' Viva, el noble vapitan, viva ! » 

And the tide tnmec as lapidiy in our favour as it had lately ebbed against 



** As for that scoundrel, be has eot no more than he deserves,** said he, 
taming to where Francisco lay, bfeeding like a carcass in the shambles ; 
** but tte op his arm some of ye, I would oe sorry he bled to death." 

It was unavailing, the large arteries had emptied hia whole li£»>blood—- 
be had already gone to his account 

This most miserable tmnsaction, with all its concomitant horrors, to my 
astonishment, did not seem to make much impression on Obed, who now, 
taming to me, said, with perfect composure, — 

** You have there another melancholy voucher for my sincerity," pointine 
to the body } " but time inresses, and you must now submit to be blinf 
folded, ana that without farther explanation at present" 

1 did so with the best grace I could, and was led below, where two beau- 
ties^ with loaded pistols, and a drawn knife each, obliged me with thor 
aociety, one seated on each side of me on the small locker, like two deputy 
batchers ready to operate on an unfortunate veaL It had now fallen deaid 
calm, and, from what I heard, 1 conjectured that the felucca was sweeping 
in towards the land with us in tow, for the sound of the surf grew louder 
and louder. By and by we seemed to slide beyond the long smooth swell 
into brokea water, for the little vessel pitched sharp and suddenly, and 
agun all was still, and we seemed to have sailed into some land-locked 
cove. F|om the loud echo of the voices on deck, I judged that we were in 
a narrow canal, the banks of which were reflecting the sound ; presently 
this ceased, and although we skimmed along as motionless as before, I no 
longer heard the splash of the felucca's sweeps ; the roar of the sea gradu- 
ally died away, until it sounded like distant thunder, and I thought we 
touched the ground now and then, although slightly. All at once the 
Spanish part m the crew, for we still had a number of the felucca's people 
with us, san^ out « Palanka,** and we began to pole alon^ a narrow marahy 
lagoon, commg so near the shore occasionally, that our sides were brushed 
hy the branches of the manerove bushes. Again the channel seemed to 
widen, and I could hear the felucca once more my her sweeps. In about ten 
minutes after this the anchor was let go, and for a quarter of an hour, notb* 
ing was heard on deck but the bustle of tj;ie people furling sails, coiling 
down the ropes, and getting every thing in order, as is usual in coming into 
port It was evident that several boats bad boarded us soon after we 
anchored, as I could make out part of the greetings between the stranfiera 
and Obed, in which my own name recurred more than once. In a httle 
while all was still again, and Obed called down the companion to my 

Sf'l?? ^'^ ^ ^^^ ^^™® ^" ^®^*^' ~* * ^^^ ^ ^" °*^' '^8 "* availing my- 

We were anchored nearly in the centre of a shallow swampy lagoon, 
loout a mde across, as near as I could judge ; two very large schooners, 
heavily armed, were moored ahead of us, one on each bow, and anoUiv 
rattier soaaller lay doaa under our stem; tliey all had nila ben^ and eveiy 



TOM CRINOU'8 tOO. 119 

_ apparently in high order, and were full of men. The shore, to the 
distance of a bow-shot from the water all around us, was low, marshy, and 
covered with an impervious jungle of thick strong reeds and wild canes, 
with here and there a thicket ot mangroves ; a little farther oflT, the land 
swelled into lofty hills, covered to the very summit with heavy timber, but 
every thing bad a moist, green, steamy appearance, as if it had been the 
region of perpetual rain. " Lots of yellow fever here,?* thought I, as the 
heavy ranlL smell of decayed vegetable matter came off on the faint sickly 
breeze, and the slus^sh fo^ banks crept along the dull clay-coIoured mo- 
tionless surface of me tepid water. Tne sea view was quite shut out^ 
I looked all round, and could discern to vestige, of the entrance. Right 
ahead there was about a furlong of land cleared at the only spot which one 
could call a beach, —that is, a hard shore of sand and pebbles. Had von 
tried to get ashore at any other point, your fate would have been that of the 
Master of Ravenswood ; as fatal, that is^ without the gentility ; for you 
Would have been suffocated in black mud, m place of clean sea*sand. Thera 
was a long shed in the centre of this cleared spot, covered in with boards, 
and thatched with palm leaves ; it was open below, a sort 6f capstan-house, 
where a vast quantity of sails, anchors, corda^, and most kinds of sea- 
stores were stowed, carefully covered over with tarpawling. Overhead 
tkere was a floorios laid along the couples of the roof^the whole length of 
the shed, forming aloft of nearly sixty feet long, divided by bulkheaos into 
a variety of apartments, lit by sma!! rude windows in the thatch, where the 
crews of the vessels, I concluded, were occasionally lodged durinv the time 
diey might he under repair. The boat was manned, and ObecT took me 
ashorewith him. 

We landed near the shed I have described, beneath which we encoun- 
tered about forty of the most uncouth and ferocious-looking rascals that my 
eyes had ever been blessed withal; they were of every shade, from the 
woolly Negro and lon^-haired Indian, to the sallow American and fair 
Btscayan ; and as they intermitted their various occupations of mending 
auts, fitting and stretching il^ging, splicing ropes, making spun-yam, 
coopering gun-carriages, grinding pikes and cutlasses, and filling cart- 
ridges, to look at me, they grinneid and nodded to each other, ancTinade 
sundry signs and gestures which made me regret many a past peccadillo 
that in more prosperous times I little thought on or repented of, and I 
internally prayed that I might be prepared to die ai became a man, for my 
fate appeared to be sealed. The only ray of hope that shot into my mind, 
through all this sloom, came from the respect the thieves, one and all, paid 
tile captain ; and, as I had reaped the benefit of assuming an outward 
recklessness and daring, which I really did not at heart possess, I screwed 
inyself up to maintain the same port still, and swaggered along, jabbering 
ill my broken Spanish, right and left, and jesting even with the most infa- 
mous-looking scoundrels of the whole lot, whfle, Qod knows, my heart 
was palpitating like a girPs when ahe is asked to be married. Obed led 
the way up a ladder into the loft, where we found several messes at dinner ; 
and passing through various rooms, in which a number of hammocks were 
slung, we at length arrived at the eastern end, which waa boarded off into 
ui apartment eighteen or twenty feet square, lighted by a small port-hole 
in the end, about ten feet from the ground. I could see several huts from 
this window, built just on the edge of the high wood, where some of the 
coantry people seemed to be moving about, and round which a large flock 
^ pigs and from twenty to thirty bullocks were grazing. All beyond, as 
&r as the eye could reach, was one continuous forest, without any vestige 
<^ a living thing ; not even a thin wreath of blue smoke evinced the pres- 
^ee of a fellow creature ; I seemed to be hopelessly cut off from all suo- 
^OMr, and my heart again died withm me. 



ISO TOM CBiirOLS's lAO. 

" I am uony to say yop most conaider youoMlf a priaoner befe for a few 
4aj8,'' said Obed. 

1 could only groan. 

** But the moment the ooaat is dear, I will be as good as my word, and 
land yoa at St Jago." 

I i^oaned again. The man was moved. 

"I would I could do so sooner," he continned ; '' but you see by how 
jprecarious a tenure t hold my control over these people ; therefore I must 
be cautious, for your sake as- well as my own, or mey would make little of 
murdering both of us, especially as the fellow who would have cot your 
throat this morning has many Aiehds among them ; above all, I dare not 
leave them for any purpose for sonie days. I must recover my eedt; in 
which, by the necessary severity you witnessed, I have been BomemAaiX 
shaken. So good-bv ; there is cold meat in that locker, and some elatfit 
to wash it down witn. Dont, I again warn you, venture out during the 
aflemoon or night. 1 will be with you betimes in tile morning. So good- 
by so long. '1u>ur cot, you see, is ready slung.** 

. He turned to depart, when, as if recQllectinjg himself, he stooped down, 
and taking hold of a ring, he lifted up a trap door, from which there was & 
fedder leading down to the capstan>nouse. 

" I had forgotten this entrance ; it will be more convenient for me in my 
visits." 

In my heart I believe he intended this as a hint that I should escape 
through the hole at some- quiet opportunity; and he was descending me 
ladder, when he stopped and lookcNi round, greatly mortified, as it struck 
me. 

^ I forgot to mention that a sentrv has been placed, I doo^ know by 
whose orders, at the foot of the ladder, to whom I must sive orders to fire 
at you, if you venture to descend. You see how the land lies ; I cant 
help it" 

This was spoken in a low tone, then- aloud •—" There are books on 
that shelf behind the canvass screen ; if yon can settle to them, they may 
amuse you/' 

He left me, and I sat down disconsolate enough. I found some Spanish 
books, and a volume of Lord Byron^s poetry, containing the first canto pi 
Childe Harold, two numbers of Blackwood, with several other English 
books and magazines, the netmea of the owners onaU of them being ear^fidbf 
erased. 

But there was nothing else that indicated the marauding life of friend 
Obediah, whose apartment I conjectured was now my prison, if I except a 
pretty extensive assortment of arms, |Hstols, and cutlasses, and a ranse of 
massive cases, with iron clamps, which were ranged along one side or the 
room. I paid my respects to the provender and claret ; the hashed chicken 
was particularly good ; bones rather large or so, but flesh white and delicate. 
Had I known that I was dining upon a guana, or lai^ wood lizard, I 
scarcely think 1 would have made so hearty a meal. Long cork. No. S, 
followed ditto, No. 1 ; and as the shades of evening, as poets say, begaa 
to fall by the time I had finished it, I toppled quietly into my cot, said my 
prayers, such as they were, and fell aj^eep. 

It must have been towards morning, from the damp freshness of the air 
that came through the open window, when I was roused by the howling of 
a dog, a sound which always moves me^ I shook myself ; but before I 
WAS thoroughly awnJ^e, it ceased ; it appeaved to have been close under 
WJ window. 

I was turning to go to sleep agpiin, when a female, in a small suppiessed 
, iwice, suag the following saatdi of a vulgar Port Royal ditty, which t 
" isaxcely foig^e myself for introducing hflie.to paUtci aociety* 



TOM CSlirt.GS^ U>0, Itl 

** Toong hoflleer eome home «t nightj 

Him give me ring and kiaaes ; 

Nine months, one picaninny white, 

Him vrhite alnioet like missis. 
Bat mifliis fim"* my back wid switch, 

Him say de ahild for massa ; 
But massa say him ■ **■ 

The fltnger broke off suddenly, ad if disturbed by the approach of some 



*'-Hu8h, hash, you ^d foolish — ^,** said a man's voice, in the same low 
whispering tone ; ** you will waken de dronken sentry dere, when we shall 
aU be p«it in iron. Hush, he will know my Voice more better." 

It-w»8 DOW clear that some one wished to attract my attention ; besides, 
I had a dreamy recollection of having heard both the male and female 
voices before. I listened, therefore, all alive. The man began to sing in 
the same low tone. 

" Newfiiittdlaiid dog kve him master de morest 
Of all de dog ever I see : 
Let him starve him, and kick him, and cuff him the sorest, 
DiflTereBce none never makee to he.** 

There was a Muse for a minute (Mr twa 

** It no use,*' tne same voice continoed ; « him either no dere, or he won^ 
hear us.'* 

" Stop," said the female, « stop ; woman head good for someting. I 
know who he shall heac Here, fiood do^, sing ps&lm ; good dog, sins 
psalm," and thereupon a long loucT melancholy m>wl rose wailing through 
the night air. 

" If that be not my dear old dog Sneeser, it is a deuced good imitation of 
him," thought I. 

The woman again spoke -^ << Towl leetle piece more, good dog," and 
the howl was repeated. 

I was now certain. By this time I had risen, and stood at the open win- 
dow ; but it was too dark to see anything distinctly below. I conld barely 
distinguish two dark figures, and what I concluded was the dog sitting on 
end between thism. 

** Who are you ? what do you want with me ?" 

** Speak softly, massa, speak softly, or the sentry may hear us, for all de 
turn I give him." 

Here the dog recogniied me, and nearly spoiled sport altogether ; indeed 
it might have cost us our lives, for he began to bark and fnsk about, and 
te leap violently against the end of the capstan-house, in vain endeavours 
to reach the window. 

• "Down, Sneezer, down, sir; you used to be a dog of some sense; 
down." 

But Sneezer's joy had capsised his discretion, and the sound of my voice 
pienouncins his name drove him mad altogether, and he bounded against 
the end of the shed, like a battering-ram. 

** Stop, man, stop," and I held tfewn the bight of my neckcloth, with an 
end m each hand. He retired, took a noble run, and m a trice hooked his 
forepawa in the handkerchief, and I hauled bin in at the window. ^ Now. 
Bneeser, down with you, sir, down with you, or your rampaging will get all 
ear throats eat" He cowered at my feet, and was stdl as a lamb from 

s Fum— flag. 



dnt momeiit I tepped to the windov. '■Nvv, who an joa, and wlnt 
do yea want?" nid L 

''All, maaaa, 70a no knowne 7" 

''Howtbedevflshoiikll? DooH joaaeoitiaaadaikaapitcli?** 

*<Well,iiiaMa,IfrUlteUyoa; H is «m^ nnna." 

''I make no great doabt of thai; but who may yon be?" 

''Lord, 70a are de foolis peraoa now; make wu talk to him," said the 
female. " Maaaa, never mmd he, dat atopid fdlow ia my husband, and 
surely maaaa know me 7* 

** Now, my very worthy friends, I think yoa want to make yourselves 
known to me ; and if ao, pray have the goodness to tell me yonr names, 
that is, if 1 can in any way aerve yoo." 

** To be sore you can, maasa ; for dat pnrpoae I come here." 

The woman hooked the word oat of his month. ** Yes, massa, yoa mast 
know me is Nancy, and dat. old stnpid is my husband Peter Mangrove, 
him who ** 

Here Peter chimed in — " Tes, massa, Peter Mangrove is de person yon 
have de honour to address, and ~" here he lowered his voice still more, 
althon^ the whole dialogae from the commencement had been conductei 
in no higher tone than a loud whisper —>*' We have secured one big large 
canoe, near de moat of dis dam hole, which, wid yoar hdp, I tink we shall 
be able to launch troo de sorf ; and once in smoot water, den no fear but 
we shall run down de coast safely before de wind till we reach St. Jago.** 

My heart jumped against my ribs. Here's an unexpected chance, 
thooght I. " BuXj Peter, how, in the name of mnmbo jumbo, came you 

** Why, massa, you do forget a leetle, dat I am a Creole negro, and not 
a naked tattooed African, whose exploits, dat is de wonderful ting fann nertr 
do in him's own country, him get embroidered and pinked in gunpowder 
on him bjeech ; beside, 1 am a Christian gentleman like yourshef; so damn 
mumbo jumbo, Massa Cringle." 

1 saw where I had erred. ** So say I, Peter, damn mumbo jumbo paitio- 
ulariy J but how came you here, man ? tell me that." 

''why, massa, I was out in de pilot-boat schooner, vrid my wife « here, 
and five more hands, waiting for de outward bound, linking no hann, when 
dem piratical rascal catch we, and carry us ofil Yankee privateer bad 
enough; but who ever hear of pilot being cArry off? — blasphemy dat-^ 
carry off pilot ! Who ever dream of such a ting ? every skivilized peoples 
respect pilot — carry off pilot ! — O Lord — "and he groaned in spirit for 
several seconds. 

'* And the dog ?" inquired I. 

**0h, massa, I could not leave him at home { and since 'vou was good 
enough to board him wid us, he has messed wid us, ay and slept wid us ; 
and when we started last, although he showed some dislike at going on 
board, I had only to say, Sneezer, we go look for you master ; and he make 
such a bound, dat he capsize my old woman dere, heel over head { oh dear, 
what display, Nancy, you was exhibit!*' 

" Hola your tongue," Peter ; you hab no decency, you old willain." 

" Well, but, Peter, speak out ; when are we to make the attempt? where 
are the rest of your crew ?'» 

*< Oh dear ! oh dear ! dat is de worstest ; oh dear P' and he began to cry' 
and sob like the veriest child. "Oh, massa," — after he had somewhat 
recovered himself; — '' Oh, massa, deee people debits. Why, de make all 
da oder on board walk de plank, wid two ten-pound shot, (me at each foot ^ 
Oh, if you had seen de clear shining blue skin, as de became leetle and le^ 
tie, and more leetler, down far in de clear green sea .' Oh dear I oh dear ! 
Only to tink dat each wavering black spot was feUow-creature like one-shef, 



wid de hmxi*9 blood warm in his bosom at do very instant of time wo loot 
fl^t of him for ever!*' 

*' Qod bless me," said I ; ** and how did you escape, and the black dog, 
and the black — ahem — b^ pardon — your, wife I mean ; how wei^ you 
spared ?»» 

'^ Ah, massa, I can't say ; but bad as do were, de seemed to have a lik- 
ing for brttte beasts, so dem save Sneezer, and mv wife, and myshef ; wo 
were de only quadrupeds saved out of do whole jcrew^ Oh dear ! Oh 
dear !" 

^'Well, well ; 1 know enough now. I will spare you the pain of any 
farther recital, Peter ; so tell me what I am to do." 

" Stop, massa, till I see if de sentrv.be still sound. I know de fellow, 
he was one on dem ; let me see— " and I heard him through the loose flooi^ 
ing boards walk to the foot of the trap ladder leadins upto my berth. Tkw 
soliloquy that followed was very -curious of its kin£ The negro had ex- 
cited himself by a recapitulation of the cruelties exercised on his unfortu* 
nate shipmates, and the unwarrantable ca|>tiott of himself and rib, —a deed 
that in tne. nautical calendar would rank in atrocity with the murder of a 
herald or the bearer of a flag of truce. He kept murmuring to himself, as 
he groped about in the dark for the sentry—** Catch pilot ! who ever hear 
sacn a ting ? I suppose dem would have pull down li^ht-house, if dero 
had been any for pull. — Where is dis sentry rascal ?.— lum surely no sober 
yet?" 

The sentry had fallen asleep aS heleaned back on the ladder, and had 
gradually slid down into a sitting position, with his head leaning against 
one of the steps, as he reclined witli his back towards it, thus exposing his 
duoat and neck to the groping paw of the black pilot. 

*' Ah — here him is, snoring heavy as my Nancy — well, dronk still ; no 
fear of him overhearing we —nice position him lie in —quite convenient— 
could cut his throat now — slice mm like a pumpkin — de debil is surely 
busy wid me, I'eter. I find de wery clasp-knife in my starboard pocket 
beginning to open of 'himshef." 

I tapped on the floor with my foot 

** Ah, tank you, Massa Tom — de debil nearly set we all in a scrape 
just now. However, I see him is quite sound -^ do sentry dat is, for de 
Oder never sleep, you know." He had again come under the window. 
*'Now, lieutenant, in two word, to-morrow nig^t at two bells, in de middle 
watch, I will be here, and we shall make a start of it ; will you venture, 
sir?" 

'* Will I ? — to be sure I will ; but why not now, Peter ? why not now ?" 

** Ah, massa, you no smell de dayhght ; near davbreak already, sir. 
Can't make try dis night, but to-morrow night I shall be here punctual." 

'' Very well ; but the dog, man 7 If he be found in my quarters, we shall 
be blown, and I scarcely tmnk he will leave me." 

*' Garemighty ! true enough, massa ; what is io be done ? De people 
know de dog was catch wid me, and if he be found wid you, den oe will 
sospect we communication togidder. What is to be done ?" 

I was myself not a little perplexed, when Nancy whispered, " De dog 
have more sense den many Christian person. Tell him he must go wid 
08 dis one night, no tell him dis night, else him won^ ; say dia one nighty 
and dat if him don't, we shall all be deaded ; try him, massa." 

I had benefited by more extraordinary hints before now, although, well 
as I knew the sagacity of the poor brute, I could not venture to hope it 
would come up U> the expectations of Mrs^ Mangrove. But I'll tiy -^ 
'*Here, Sneezer, here, my- boy ; you must go home with Peter to-night, or 
we shall all get into a deuced mess; so hore^ my boy, here is the bight of 




If4 TOM cftnrouB's Loe. 

the handkerchief agun, and through the window yon moat go; comei 
Sneezer, come.** 

To my great joy and rarpriae, the poor dumb beait roae from where he 
had coiled nimself at my feet, and after having actually embraced me, by 

58, and 
sort of 

pot his forepawfl throng the handkerchief, and was dropped to the grouna 
a^in. I could immediately perceive the two dark figures of the pilot and 
h» wife, followed by the dog, glide away as noiselesshr as if they had been 
spirits of the night, until they were lost under the shade of the thick jungle. 

f turned in, and — what will not youth and fatigue do ? — I fell once more 
fast asleep, and never opened ray eyes nnttl Obedshook me in my cot abont 
eight o'clock in the morning. 

** Gtood morning. Lieutenant I have sent up your breakfast but yon 
don't seem inclined to eat it** 

** Don*t you believe it, my dear Obed. I have been sound asleep till this 
moment ; only stop till I have slipped on my — those shoes^ if you please 
—thank you — waistcoat — that will do. Now — e<^fee, fiish, yams, and 
plantains, and biscuit, white as snow, and short as — and eggs — and — 
zounds ! claret to finish with ? — Why, Obed, you surely don't desire that 
I should enjoy all these delicacies in solitary blessedness ?" 

*< Why, I intend to breakfast with you, if my society be not disafreeable.** 

** Disagreeable ! Not in the least, quite die contrary. That blaOL grouper 
looks remarkably beautiful. Another piece of yam, if you please. — Shall 
I fill you a cup of coffee, Obed ? For my own part, I always stow Uie 
ground tier of my cargo dry, and then take a top dressing. Wnte this down 
as an approved axiom with all thorough breakfast-eaters. Why, man you 
are off your feed ; what are you tumins up your ear for, in that incompre- 
hensible fashion, like a ducK in thunder? A little of the claret — thank 
you. The very best butter I have ever eaten out of Ireland -*=• now, some 
of that avocado pear— and as for biscuit, Leman never came up to it. 1 
say, man — hillo, where are you 7 — rouse ye out of your brown stody 
man." 

<* Did you hear that, Mr. Cringle?" 

" Hear what 7—1 heard nothing," rejoined I ; " but hand me over that 
land-crab. Thank you, and you may send the spawl of that creeping thins 
along with it ; that guana. I had a dislike to eating a lisard at first, but 1 
have got over it somehow ; — and a thin slice of ham, a small taste of the 
unclean beast, Obed -^ peach-fed, I'll warrant." 

There was a pause. The report of a great gun came booming along, 
reverberated from side to side of the lagoon, the echoes growing shorter, 
and shorter, and weaker and weaker, until they growled themselves asleep 
in a hollow rumble like distant thunder. 

** Ha, ha ! Dick Gasket for a thousand I Old Blowhard has stuck in 
your skirts. Master Obed — but Lord help me, man ! let us finish our break- 
fast ; he wont be here this half hour." 

I expected to see mine host^s forehead lowering liken thunder cloud from 
my ill-timed funning ; but to my surprise, his countenance exhibited more 
amenity than 1 thought had been in the nature of the beast, as he re- 
plied, — 

** Why, Lieutenant, the felucca put to sea last night, to keep a bright look- 
out at the mouth of our cove here. I suppose that is him overhauline some 
vessel." ^ 

« It may be so ; — hush ! therms another gun — two P* 
Obed changed countenance at the double report 



TOM crikgle's loo. Ift5 

' *'I A7, Obed, the folacca did not carry more than one gun when I saw 
her, and she has had no time to load and fire a^ain." 

He did not answer a word, bat continued, with a piece of guana on the ^ 
end of his fork in one hand, and a cup of coiiee in the other, as if he had been 
touched by the wand of a magician. Presently we heard one or two drop- 
ping shots, quickly thickening into a rattle of musketry. He threw down 
m food, picked up his hat, and trundled down stairs, as if the devil had 
lacked him. *< Pedro, que hay ?" I could hear him say to some one below, 
who appeared to have arrived in great haste, for he gasped for breath — 

'* Aqui viene lafeluca,'' answered Pedro ; " perseguido por dos Lanchas 
Canoneras llenas de Gente." 

*' Abordp entonces, abordo toda el mundo ; arma, arma, aqui vienen loa 
Engleses ; arma, arma !" 

And all from that instant was a regular hillabaloo. The drums on board 
the schooners beat to quarters, a great bell, formerly the ornament of some 
goodly ship, no doubt, which had neen slunjg in the fork of a tree, clanged 
away at a liirious rate, the crews were hurrymg to and fro, shouting to each 
other in Creole Spanish, and Yankee Ehghsh, whil« every cannon-shot 
from the felucca or the boat guns came louder and louder, and the small 
arms peppered away sharper and sharper. The shouts of the men en^ged, 
both friends and foes, were now heard, and I could hear Obed*s voice on 
board the largest schooiier, which lay full in view from my window, giving 
orders, not only to his c^wn crew, but to those of the others. I heard him 
distinctly sing out, afler ordering them to haul upon the spring on his cable, 
"Now, men, 1 need not tell vou to fight bravely, for if you are taken, every 
devil of you will be hanged, so hoist away the signal,'' and a small black 
ball flew up through the rigging, until it reached the maintopgallant^mast- 
head of the schooner, where it nun^ a moment, and in the next blew out 
\n a large black swallow-tailed flag, Tike a commodore's broad pennant 

^' Now," i^rieked he, <' let me see who dares give in with this voucher 
for his honesty flying alofl !" 

I twisted and craned myself out of the window, to get a viey of what 
was going on elsewhere ; however, I. could see nodiing but Obed's large 
Mhoonerfrom it, all the other craft were out of the range of ray dye, being 
bid by the projecting roof of the shed. The noise continued — the shout- 
ing rose higher than ever--* the other schooners opened their fire, both cannon 
and musketry ; and from the increasing vehemence of the Spanish ex- 
clamations, and the cheering on board Obed's vessels, I concluded the 
attacking party were having the worst of it My dog Sneezer now came 
ramping and scrambling -up the trap-sftair, his paws slipping between the 
oars at every step, his moutn wide open, and his tongue hanojing out, while 
he barked, and .yelled, and gasped to ^et at me, as tf his life depended oa 
it Afler him I could see the rouncT woolly pate, of Peter Mangrove, 
Esquire, as excited appai'ently as the dog, and as anxious to get up ; but 
they got jammed together in the small hatch, and stuck there, man and 
beast At length Peter spoke — 

'* Now, sir, now ! Nancy has run on before to de beach wid two paddles ; 
now for it, now for it'* 

Down trundled master, and dog, and pilot By this time there was iiq 
one in the lower part of the shed, which was full of smoke, while the in- 
fernal tumult on the water still raged as furiously as ever, the shot of all 
sorts and sizes hissing, and splashing, and ricoehetUng along the smooth 
suiface of the harbour, as if there had been a sleet of musket and cannon- 
halls and grape. Peter struck out at the top df his speed, Sneezer and I 
followed : we soon reached the jungle, dashed through a path that had been 
flatly cleared with a cutlass or bul-hook, for the twigs were freshly shred. 



mod in about ten miniites reached the faigb wood. Howem, bo i«sI for 

the wicked, although the row seemed lessening now. 

*< Some one has got tlie worst of it," said I. 

<* Never mind, massa,*' quoth Peter, *'or we shan't get de betteiest 
onraheC 

And away we gallopped again, until I had scarcely a lag an inch aqoarB 
OB my back, or anywhere else, and my skin was torn in pieces by the pnckly 
bushes and spear srass. The sound of firing now ceased entirely, althov|^ 
theie was stul loud shouting now and then. 

"Push on, massa — dem will soon miss we.'* 

** True enough, Peter — but what is that 1**'ZB we came to a bundle cf 
douts wallopping about in the morass. 

" De debii it must be, I tink," said the pilot ** No, my Nancy it is, 
•ticking in the mud up to her waist ; what shall na do 7 you tink, maasa, 
we hab time for stop to pick she out ?" 

** Heaven have mercy, Peter — yes, unquestionably.'' 

« WeU, massa, you know best" 

So we tugged at the sable heroine, and fint one leg came home oat of 
the tenacious clay, with a plopj then the other was drawn out of the aua^ 
mire. We then relieved ner of the paddles, and each taking hola oi one 
of the poor half-dead creature's hands, we succeeded in getting down to 
the beach, about half a mile to leeward of the entrance to the cove. We 
found the canoe there, plumped Nancy stem foremost in^ the bottom of it 
for ballast, gathered all our remaining energies for a grand shove, and ran 
her like lightning into the surf, till the water flashed over and over us, reach- 
ing to our necks. Next moment we were bofh swimming and the cano& 
^mough full of water, beyond the surf, rising and falling on the long swelL 
We scrambled on board, set Nancy to bale with Peter's hat, seized our 
paddles, and skulled away like fury for ten minutes right out to sea, with- 
out looking once about us, until a mudcet-shot whistled over our heads, 
then another, and a third ; and I had just time to bold up a white hand- 
ketchief, to prevent a whole platoon being let drive at us trom tfie deck of 
his Britannic majesty's schooner Gleam, lying-to about a cable's length to 
windward of us, with the Firebrand a mile astern of her out at sea. In 
five minutes we got on board of the former. 

" Mercy on me, Tom Cringle, and is this the way we are to meet again ?" 
said old Dick Gasket, as heiield out his large, bony, sunburnt hand to 
me. " You have led me a nice dance, in a vain attempt to redeem yon 
from bondage, Tom ; but I am deUghted to see yon, idthough I have not 
faiad the credit of being your deliverer — very glad to see you, Tom ^ but 
come along, man, come down with ine^ and let me rig you ; not quite a 
Stultz's GXf, you know, but a jury rig you shall have, as good as Dick 
Gasket's kit can fumiah forth, for really you are in a miserable plight, 
man." 

" Bad enough, indeed, Mr. Gasket — many thanks though — bad enou^ 
as you say ; but I would that your boat's crew were in so good a plight" 

* Mr. Gasket lodced earnestly at me — ** Why, I have my own misgivings. 
Cringle ; this morning, at day-break, the Firebrand in company, we fell in 
with an armed felucca. It was dead calm, and she was out of gunshot, 
dose in with the land. The Firebrand immediately sent the cutter oa 
board, fully armed, with instructions to me to man the launch, and arm her 
with the boat-gun, and then to send both boats to overhaul the feTocca. I 
did so, standing in as ctuickly as the lig^t air would take me, to support 
them — the felucca all this while sweeping in shore as fast as she could puIL 
But the boats were too nimble for her, and our launch had already saluted 
-her twice from the six.-^KHUider in the bow, wlien tlie sea-breeze came thun« 
dering down in a white squall, that reefod our gafl^topscil in a trxce^ an4 



TOM CRTKaLS's 1A)0, 13^ 

fci«ir.4way « wbole lot of K^ht sails, like so many paper lites. When it 
cleared away, tike devil a felucca, boat, or anything else, was to be seen. 
Capsized they coald not have been, for ail three were not likely to have gone 
ttiat way ; and 'as to any creek thev could have run into, why we could see 
Bone. That they had pulled in shore, however, was our conclusion ; but 
here have we been, the whole morning, firing signal guns every five min- 
stes withotft success.** 

'< Did yo4 Mkr no firing after thf squall ?*' said I. 

"Why, some of my people tjiought they did, but it was that hollow, trem- 
ulous, reverberating kind of sound, that it might have been thunder ; and 
die breeze blew too strong to have lulowed us to hear inusketry a mile and 
a half to windward. I did think I saw some smoke rise, and blow off now 
and then, but — '* . 

'** But me )tto bats. Master Richard Gasket ; Peter Man^ve here, afl 
well as myself, saw your people pursue the felucca into the lion's den, and 
I fear they have been crushed in his jawswV ; I briefly related what we had 
Men — Gasket was in great distressr. 

" They must have been taken. Cringle. The fools | to allow themselves 
to be trepax^ned hi this way. We must stand out and speak the corvette. 
JdriiandA make saiM" 

' 1 <30uld *n0t help, smifin^' at the grandenr of Dick's emphasis on the off, 
when We^ty lftLna§, onc^third of them boys, and the rest landsmen, scram- 
Med uf» from below, and begptn to puQ and haul in no very seamanlike 
fiishion. . He hotic^ ^. * 

" Ah, Tom, I know what you are grinning at, but t fear it has been no 
Dltighing niatter to my poor boat's pre^ — all my best hands gone, God help 
me!" 

'Presently, being under thle Firebrand's lee (quarter, we lowered down the 
boat and went on beard, where, for the first time, the extreme ludicrousness 
of my appearance and following flashed on me. There we were all in a 
fafonch, the dog, Mr. and Mrs. Mafkgrove, and Thomas Cringle, gent, such 
in appearance as I shall eihortl^ describe them. 

Old Richard Gasket, Esq. first clambered up the side and made his bow 
t6 the Hon. Captain Transom, who was standing near the gangway, on 
Ae snow-white deck,' amidst a group of ofiicers, where everything was in 
the most apple-pie order, himself, both in mind and apparel, the most 
yolished concern in ^e ship ; while the whole crew, with tne exception of 
the unfortunate absentees m the cutter, were scraihbling to get a good view 
of US. • 

I have already said, that my uniform was torn to pieces ; trousers ditto j 
noiy shoes had partsd company in the quagmire ; and as for hat, it was left 
m my cot I had a dirty bandage ti^d round hxy neck, peiformiuff the two- 
fold ofiice of a cravat and a dressing to my wound } while the blood from 
the scralches had' dried into black streaks adown and across mv face and 
paws, and I was altogether, so h^erimed with mud that myinotner would 
not have known me. Diek'made Ids dalaahi, and then took up a poeitton 




"The devil it is!" said Transom, trying in vain to keep his gravity. 
«* Why, I see it is — How do you do, Mr. Cringle ? glad to see you.** 

(< This is Peter Mangrove, branch^ilot," continued Gasket, as Fetei^ 
bowing, tried to slide past out of sight.. 

Till this instant I had not time to look at him — he was even a much 
queerer-looking figure than myself. He had been encumbered with nosu* 
ment beside his trousers when we started, and these had been reduced, in 
the scramble through the brake, to a waistband and two kneebands, from, 

46—2 



1S8 TOM CBJKaX^ft's LOO. 

wliioh » few ihredfl fluttered in the breeze, the rest of fau «aav«M lukvii||S 
been eotirel^ torn out of the bolt-ropes. For an upper dress he had bofi* 
rowed a waistcoat without sleeves irom the purser of the schooner, which 
hung loose and unbuttoned before, while behind, bei»g somewhat of the 
shortest, some very prominent .parts of his btern frame were disclosed, ■• 
even an apology for a shirt he had none. Being a deemt man, however, he 
had tied his lacge straw hat round his waist, by strings fastened to the brofti 
brims, which neaily met behind, so that the crown covered hi^ loins, before 
like a petard, while the sameness of his black naked body was relieved by 
being laced with blood from numberless laeeratibns. 

ifext came the female — "This is the pilot's wife. Captain- Transofn,** 
again sung out old Dic^ ; but decency won't let me venture on a descnpi' 
tion'of poor Nancy's ^equipment, beyond mentioning, that one of tha 
Gleam's crew had given her a pair of old trousers, wuch, as a sail^ir has 
no bottom, and Nancy was not a sailor, were mop(t ludicrously scanty at 
top, and devil another rag of &ny }^^4^ ^^^ ^c poor creature on, but a hand- 
kerchief across her bosom, 'lliere wa? no standing all tl^is ; the crew for- 
ward and in the waist were all on the broad grin, w^^^ ^® officers, a|ter 
struggling to maintain their gravity until they were pearly ^ufibcated; fairly 
gave m, and the whole ship echoed with the most uproario.uis^laii^tQr; 4' 
young villain, whether a mid or no I could not tell^ yelling o^t in the thsong,* 
" Hurra for Tom Cringle's Taij!" . - 

I was fairly beginning to lose countenance, when up julnped Sneeaer. tv 
my relief out of the boat, with an old cocked hat lashed on his head, a ma^ 
rine's jacket bnttoned round his body, and- his coal-black muzzle bedaubed 
with pipe-clay, regularly monkevficd, the momentary handiwork of sotee 
wicked httle reefers, while a small pipe stmcr out quietly, as if not inteiMlel: 
tjo reach the quarter-deck, although it did so,.'* And here comes the Uutjtmt- > 
of Mr. Cringle's Tail." The dog began floundering .and jumping about, 
and walloppmg among the people, most of whom knew him, ana iBuna> 
diately drew uieir attention from me and my party, to himself; for away 
they all bundled forward, dog and men tumbfing and scrambling about like 
80 many children, leaving the cofl^t clear to me and my attendant^ The 
absurdity of the whole exhibition had for an instant, even tinder the wery 
nose of a proverbially taut hand, led to freedoms which I had believeit. 
impossible m a man-of-war. However, there was too much serious matter 
in hand, independenfly of any other consideratioUj to allow the merrimeo^ 
created by our appearance to last long. 

Captain Transom, immediately on being informed how matters stt>od. 
with seamanlike promptitude determined to lighten the Gleam, and send 
her in with the boats, for the purpose 'of destroying the haunt of tne pirates, 
and recovering the men, if they were still alive; out before anything could 
be done, it came on tb blow, qjid for a week we had great difficulty in 
maintaining our position off die coast against the strengm of the gale and 
lee current . ' • * 

It was on the Sundjay' morning after I had escaped, that it moderated 
sufficiently for our purpose, when both vessels stood close in, and Peter and 
I were sent to reconnoitre the entrance of the port in the gig. Having 
sounded and taken the beariiiigs of the land, we returned on board, when 
the Gleam^s provisions were taken out and ner water started. The baillast 
was then shifted, so as to bring her by the head, that she mi^ht thus draw 
less water by being on an even keel, all sharp vessels of her class requiring 
much deeper water aft than forward ; the corvette's launch, with a 12-pound 
earronade fitte^d, was then manned and armed with thirty seamen and ma- 
rines, under the command of the second lieutenant ; the jolly boat and the 
two quarter boatd, each with twelve men, followed in a string, under the 
llurd lieutenant, the master, dnd the senior midshipman ^ tmrty picked 



TOM CHIVOLe's loo. 1^ 

iMUids were added to the schooner's crew, and I was desired to take the gig 
with six smart hands and Peter Mangrove, and to accompany the whole as 
pilot ; bat to pull out of danger so soon as the action commenced, so as 
la he ready to help any disablcwl boat, or to carry orders from Uie command- 
ing officer. 

At nine in the morning, we gave three cheers, and leaving the corvette, 
with barely forty hands on board, the Gleam made stSi towards the har- 
bour's rhouth, with the boats in tow ; but when we got within mnsket-shot 
of the entrance, the breeze failed us, when the order of sailing was reversed, 
the boats now takmsthe schooner in tow, preceded by your humble servant 
in ths gig. We dashed safely through thie small canal of blue ^ater, which 
divided uie suif at thehaibour's mouth, having hit it to a nicety ; but when 
about a pisjtol-shot froin the entrance, the channel narrowed to a muddy creelc 
not more than^ twenty yards wide, with high trees, and thick underwoda 
fliAe to the water*s edge. All was silent, the sun shone down upon us like 
the concentrated rays of a burning-glass, and th^ was no breeze to dissi- 
pate the heavy dank mist tha^t faoversd over the surface "of the unwholesome 
canal, nor waf there any appearance ^ a livins thing, save and except a 
few startled water-fowl, and some guanas on me trees, and n<iw and then 
ma al^Lfor, like a bfaek log t)f charred wood, would ^11 off a shmy bank 
of brown mud, with a splash, into the water. 

We rowed' on, the schooner every nowtand then tiding the ground, but 
she #as^ always ouickly warped off again by a kedge ; at leng£, after we 
had in all proceeded, it miaht be, about a mile from the beadi, we came to 
a^ boom or strong limber clamped with iron, stretching across the creek. 
We Were not unprepared for this ; one or two old 32-pound carronades, 
whidi, in anticipation of some obstruction of the sort, haa been got on deck 
from amonp the Gleam's ballast, ahd properly slung, was now made fast 
to the middle timber of the boom, and let go, when the weight of it sunk it 
to the bottom, and we passed on. We pulled on for about a half mile 
fiirther, when I noticed, high up on a sunny clifi| that shot boldly out into 
the clear blue heavens, a small: red fla^ suddenly run up to the top of a tall, 
scathed, branchless palm tree, where it flared for a moment in the breeze 
like the flame of a torch, and then as suddenly disappeared. " Come, they 
are on the look-out for us,-! see." 

The hills continued to close on us as we advanced, and that so |N«cipi- 
tonsly, that we might have been crushed to pieces had half-a-dozen active 
fellows, without any risk to themselves, for the trees would have screened 
them, simply loosened some of the fragments of rock that impended over 
us, so threateningly, it seemed, as if a little flnper could have sent them 
bounding and thundering'down the mountain side ; but this either was not 
the same of the people we were' in search of, 6r Obed's spirit and energy 
had oeen crushed out of him by the heart-depr esiiing belief that his hours 
were numbered, for no active obstruction wae offered. ' 

We now suddenly rounded an abrupt corner of the creek, and there we 
were full in front of the schooners,- who, with the felucca in advance, were 
lying in line of battie, with springs on their cables. The horrible black - 
pennant was, in the present instance, nowhere to be seen ; indeed, why 
such an impolitic step as ever to ' have shown it at ail was tiAien in the 
first attack, 1 never could understand ; for the force was too small to have 
created any serious fear of being captured, (unless indeed it had been taken 
for an advanced guard, supported by a stronger,) whife it must have ap- 
pealed probable to Obediah, that the loss of the two'boats would in all like- 
lihood lead to a more powerful attempt, when, if it were successful, the 
damning fact of having fought under such an infernal emblem must have 
ensnred a pirate's death on the gibbet to every soul who was taken, unless 
ka had iateoded to have mttdered all the ipintnesses of it Bat since proof 






IjA toil GMHaXiS's UK^ 

my iidflpient. I bad certainly promised that I womW, in »> way A«t J 
oouldhttp, be instrumental in his destruction or seiaure, provided helandea 
me at St. Jago, or pul me on board a friendly vessel. Be did neither, so 
lus part of the compact might be considered Ijroken ; but ihen it was oi^ 
of his power to have fulfilled it ; besides, he not only threiatened my lite sub^ 
scquently, but actually wounded me j. still, "however, on great provocation. 
But what •' is writ, iswrit" He has gone to his accgant, pirate as he was, 
murderer if you wiU ;• yet J had, and still have, a tear Tor his memoiy,-- 
and many a time have I prayed on mjr bare knees that his blue agonized 
dying look might be erased from my brain ; —but this can never he. What 
he had been I never learned ; but it is my deliberate omnion, that, with a deaf 
stage and opportunity, he woulihave fi^need himself out from the. surface 
qf society for good or for evil The unfortunates who survived him, hut U> 
wpiate their crimes on the gibbet at Port i^oyal, said he had ioined thein 
from a New-York privateer, but they knew nothing farther of-^km hcyond 
^e fact, that by his skill and desperate coufage, within a month he bad by 
common acclaim been elected captain of th^ inhale band. Thftre vas % 
story current.on board the corvette, of a small trading craft, wilh a persoa 
answering his description, having been captured in the Chesapeake, t>y oae 
of the squadron, and sent to Halifax for adjudication, (the master, as la 
most cases of the kind, being left on boar4») which from fhat hour bad 
never been heard of, neither -vessely nor prize, crew, nor captaiif^ until' two 
Americans were takeft out of a slay«r, oSgr the Cape de Veids, by the Fire- 
brand, about a year afterwards, aft.er a most br^^ve and dertermined attempt 
to escape, both of whom were however allowed to enter, but subsa^. 
quently deserted off Sandy Hook by swimming ashore, in consequence ol 
a pressed hand hinting that one of them, surmised to be Obed, had been tha 
master of the vessel s^ve mentioned. 

All resistance having ceased, the few of the pirates who escaped havios 
scampered into the woods, where it would have been vain to follow them, 
we secured our prisoners, and at the close of a bloody day, for fatal had.it^ 
been to friend and foe, the prizes were ^t under weigh, and before nigfat- 
^1 we were all at sea, sailing in a fleet, under coitvoy of the corv^te^aad 
Gleam. 



CHAPTER X. . ,, 

• • • » 

* This disease is be^l'ond my fH^actice.** 

Ths Doctob la MACBBnii. 

— ■ * ^ 

% 

THEiiecond and apting third' lieutenants were on board the prizes -r- th© 
purser was bujy in his vocation ^— the doctor ditto. Indeed, he and his 
mates had more on their hands than they couW well manage. The first lieu- 
tenant was engaged on deck, and the mstster ^as in his cot, suffering from a 
ievere contusion ; so whei^ I got on board the Corvette, and dived into 
the gunroom in search of some crumbs of eomfort, the deuce a living so\il 
was there to welcome me, except the gunroom steward, who speedily pro* 
auced some cold meat, and asked me if I would take a glass of swizzle. 

The food I had no great famjy to, although 1 had not tasted a morsd 
idnce six o'clock in the morning, and it, was now eight in the evening ; but 
libe offer of the grog sounded gratefully in mine ear, and I was about tack- 
Ifeg tQ^aatQUtrummer of the. same, whep asroart dandified shaver, withg^f 



¥0M CftiNoiiS'a XiOa* 190 

mother-o^^pearl buttons on his j^jeket, as thick iet as peas, pfesented haa 
tillow chc^ at the door. 

"Captain Transom desires va^ to say, that he yill be gia^ of your com- 
pany in the cabin, Mr. Crinkle*" 

** My compliments — I wiU wait on him as soon as I have had a suack. 
We have- had no dinner in'the gunroom to-day yet, you know, Mafame.*' 

** "Why, it was in the kftowledge of that the captain sent pie, sir* He has 
not had any dinner either ; but it is now on the table, and h» waits for you«'* 
' I was but Kttle in spirits, and, to 'say sooth, was fitter* for my bed than jo* 
csety ; but the captain's advances had been made with so much kindliness, 
that I got up, andihade a strong endeavour toiouse myself; and, having 
- made my toilet as* well as my slender me^ins admitted, i followed the cap^ 
tUn*s steward into the cabin.. , 

1 started — why, 1 could not- well tell ^as the sentry at the door stood 
to Ms arms when I passed in^ and, as if I had beetn actually possessed 5y 
some- wandering spirit, who had taken the small liberty of using my faculties 
and tongue without my concurrence,'i hastily asked the man if he was an 
American ? -t-'H6 started in gredt astonishment foj a short space -^ tnmed 
Ms quid — and then rapped out, as angrily as respect hx a commissiondd 
9mce(*would let him, — " No', by , sir !" , 

This -startled me as niuch as the question I had almost, unconsciously — 
and, I may say, involuntarily — put to the marine had surprised him, and I 
made a full stop, and leaned back a^inst the door-post. The captain, who 
Was walking up and down, the cabin, had heard me speak, but without 
^mprehenmng the nature of im question, and now recalled me in sonM 
measure to myself, by inquiring if X wanted anything^ I rephed,^ hurriedly, 
that f did not* 

" W^ll, Mr. Cringle, dinner is ready — so take that chair at the foot of 
the table, will you ?'*^ * 

I sat down mechanically, as it appeared to me.*- for a strange swimming 
dizzy sott of sensation had suddeply overUkeji me, accompanied by a 
whoreson tingling, tf3 Shakspeaje hath it, in my ears. I was unable to eat 
a morsel ; but I could have drunk the ocean, had it been claret or vin-de- 
grave — to both of. which I helped myself as largely as good manners 
Would allow, or a little beyond, mayhap>*i\U.this while the captain was 
ttowing his cargo with great zeal, and tifting away at the fluids as became 
an honest sailor §ifter so long a fast, interlarding his operations with a 
civil #Qrd to me now and then, without |tny especial regard as to the 
answer I^made hhn, or, indeed, «caring greatly whether I answered him 
or not *" ' ., 

-^ Sharp work yoti ianust have had, Mr..Crmgle — should have liked to 
have Seen with you myself. Help yourself, before passing that bottle-^ 
zounds, man, never talte a bottle by the bilae — grasp the neck, man, at 
least in this fervent climate — thanl^ you. Pity you bad not caught the 
captain though. What you told me of that man vecv much interested me, 
coupled with the prevailing reports regarding him in the ship r- daring dog 
he must have been — can't forget how gallantly he weathered us when we 
chased him."" 

r broke silence, for the fir^ time. Indeed, I could scarcely have done so 
s<x>n9r, even had I chosen it, for the gallant officer was rather continuous 
in his yarn«spinnins. However,, he had nearly dined, and was leaning 
back, allowing the champagne to trickle leisurely from a glass half a yard 
long, which do had applied to his lips, when I said, -^ 

'♦Well, the imagination does sometimes play one Strang tricks — I 
verily believe in sepond sight, now. Captain, for at this very instant I am 
legnlarly the fool of my senses, — but pray don^ laugh at me ;*' and I 
lay back on my chair, and pressed my hands over my shut eyes and M 






*}94 TOM criholb's Loa. 

bnniing temples, whicb were now tlirobbing u if the artexies would hare 
bant 

The captain, who was evidently much flurprised at my abruptness, said 
■omething hurriedly and rklher aliarply in' aqswer, but I could not for the 
life of me mark what it was. .1 openeq my e^es again, and looked to wants 
tbe object that had before nTet;eo my attention, « It was neither more nor 
less than the captain's cloak, a plain, unpretending, substantial blue gar- 
ment, hned with white, which, on comins below, he' had cast carelessly 
down on the locker, that ran across We auer part of the cabin behind him. 
It was about eighteen feet from mc, and as there was no light nearer it than 
the swinging lamp o?er the ^ble at which we were seated, the whole of 
the cabin thereabouts was thrown considerably into shade. The cape of the 
cloak was turned over, showine the white lining, and was rather bundled 
as it were into a round heap, uout the size ^f a man*s head. When first 
I looked a^it, there was a dreamy, glimmering indistinctness about it that I 
could not wdl understand, and I would have said, had it been possible, 
that the wrinkles and folds in it Were be^iinning to be instinct with motion, 
to creep and crawl as it were. At all events, the false impression was so 
•trong aa to jar my nerves, and make me shudder with noxror. I kndw 
there was no such thing, as well as Macbeth, but nevertheless it wa& with 
an indescribable feeling of curiosity, dashed with awe, that I stared intently 
at it, as if fascinated,, while almost unwittingly I made, the remark already 
mentioned. 

I had expected that the unaccountable appearance whioh had excited my 
attention so strongly would have vanishaa with the closing of my eyes ; 
but it did not, for when I looked at it again, the working and shifling 
of the folds of the cloth still continued, and even more distinctly than 
before. ^ 

'* Very extraordinary all this," I murmured, to myself. 

** Pray, Mr. Crinele, be sociable, man,'' said the captain; " what^t^ 
deuce do you see, that you stare over my sho^der in .that way 1 Were I 
a woman now, I should tremble to look lielund me, while you were glaring 
aft in that wild, moonstruck sort of fashion.'* 

** By all that is astonishing," I exdaimed in jgreat^agitation, " if the Mda 
of the eape have not arranged themselves into & ye^ likeness of his dyins 
face ! Mrny it t« his face, and no fanciful grouping oif my heated, brajn. Look 
there, sir — look there — I know it canH be — r hut there he Uesy — die very 
ftatures and uppor pact of the body, hth imd limb, as when he disappeared 
beneath the water when he was shiot dead." . 

1 felt the boiling blood that h^d, been rushing through my system like 
Streams of molten lead, saddenly treeze And coafulafe about my heart, im- 
peding my resnmtion to a decree that I thought 1 sbould have been 6uiK>- 
cated. I had tne feeling as itmy soul was going to take wing. It was net 
fear, nor could I say 1 was in pain, but it was so utterly unlike any thing I 
had everexperienoed before, and'So inde8cribalde,that I thou^t to mysdf^ 
*< This may be death.** 

** Why, what a dianeeable rose vou are, Master Cringle,'' said Captain 
Transom, i^ood-natoredly ; ** your mte was like the north-west moon in a 
fegbut a mmuie ago^ and now it is as pale as a lily — blue white, I declaje^ 
Why, my roan, you must be ill, and seriously too." 

His voice dissipated the hideous chimera — the folds fell, and relapsed 
iato their own shape, and the cloak iras once more a cloak, and notning 
mon— I drew a long breath. ** Ah, it is gone at last, thank God !" — and 
then aware of the stianse effect my unaccountable incoherence' most have 
had on the skipper, [ Siottght to braxen it out by trfin^ the free-and> 
May linOi which was neither mors nor less than arrant mipertinence in 
enr lelative pooilieBa. « Why, I have been beatied a little, and amusing 



r 



TOM CKUrOLS's LOO. 135 

myself witb spndiy yain imagimoj^ ; but silow me to take wine with 
you, Captain,'* fillihg a tumbler with vin-de-grave to the brim, as I spoke, 
"Success to you, sir — here's to your speedy promotion — may you soon 
ffl/t a erack frigate ; as for me I mtend to be Archbishop of Canterbury, 
or maid of hoiiaur to the Q>ueen of Sheba, or something in the heathen 
mythology." 

I drank off the wine, although I had the ^eatest difficulty in steadying 
my trembling hand^ and carrying it to my'hps:.but notwithstanding my 
increasing ^ddiness, and the buzzing i|i my ears^ and swimming in mine 
eyes, I noticed the captain^ face of amazement as he exclaimed, 

" The boy is either mad or drunk, by Jupiter !*' 

I could not stand his searching and angry look, and in turning my eye, 
it again feil.on the cloak, which now seemed to be stretched out at greater 
len^, and to be altogether more voluminous than it was before. I waa 
feicibly struck with this, for I was certain ilo one bad touched it 

* By heavens! it heaves," I exclaimed, much moved, — "how is thig? 
I never thought to have believed such things, — it stirs again — it takes 
tbe figure of a man — as if it were a pall covering.&u body. Pray, Cap- 
tain TnLn8om,»what trick is this? — Is tiiere any thing below that cloak 
there ?'* 

<' Whaet cloak do you mean?" 
. " Why, that blue one lying on the locker there •— is there any cat or dog 
in the cabin ?*' — and I started on my le^s. — " Captain Transom," I coOi* 
tmued, with great vehemence, ^' for (he love of God tell me tohal is there 
below that cloak.*' 

He looked surprised beyond all measure* 

" Why, Mr. Cringle, I cannot for the soul of me comprehend you : indeed 
I cannot ; but, Mafame, indulge him.' See if there be any tlung below my 
doak." g, 

'The servant walked to the locker, and lifted ijp the cape of it, and was 
n the act of taking it from the locker, when I impetuously desired the man 
to leave it alone. 

" I cdn't look on him again," said I ; while the faintishness increased, 
so that I could hardly Bpeak. " Don't move the covering from his face, for 
Qod*8 sake — don't remove it,", and I lay back in my chair, screening my 
eyes from the lamp with my hands, and shuddering with an icy chill from 
head to foot 

Tho captain, who had hitherto maintained the well-bred, patronizing, 
vlthongh somewhat distant^ air of a superior officer to an inferior who was 
his guest, addressed me now iA an altered ton«, an4 with a bfotherly kind- 
less. 

** Mr. Cringle, I have, soqie knowledge of you, and I know many of your 
friends ; so I must ^ke the liberty of an old acquaintance with you. This 
day's woik haa been a severe one, and your^share in it, especially after your 
past fatigues, has been very trying, and as I will report it, I hope it may 
dap a good' spoke in your' wheel ; but you are over-heated, and nave been 
over-excited ; fatigde has broken you down, knd I must really request you 
will take somethifig warm, and turn in. Here, Mafame, get the carpen- 
ter's mate to secure Uiat^cleat on the weather-side there, and sling my spare 
cot for Mr. Crins^e. Y^u will be cooler, here ^han in the gunroom." 

I heard his words without comprehendino; their meanmg. I sat and 
stared at htm, quite conscious, all the time, of the extreme impropriety, not 
•to say indecency, of my conduct ; but there was a spell on me ; I tned ta 
•peak, but could not ; and, believing that I was either possessed by some 
wtnb devil, or struck with palsy, I rose up, bowed to Captain Transom, 
•ad straigl^way hied me on deck. 

I eould hear him My to his servant, as I was going up the ladder, ** Look 



1S6 TOM CSINOLB's LdG. 

after that yooaff genUeman, Mafam^, and send laaac to die db«tor, and - 
bid him come here now;** and then; in a commiserating tone»''Poor^ 
young fellow, what a pity P' 

W^en Igot on deck all wa# qtdet The cool 6re8b air had an instao- 
taneoas eflSct on • my ehaitered 'nervep, the vi<^nt throbbing in my head 
ceased, and I besui to hug myself with the notion that my distemper, 
whatever it tnisht nave been, he^ beaten a retreat 

Suddenly I telt so collected and comfortable, as to be amte alire to the 
loveliness:of the scene. It was a beautiful moonlight nignt ; such a night 
as is nowhere to be seen toUhout the Tropics, ind not often within thcrar 
There. was gust breeze enough to set the sails to dieep, although not so 
strong as to prevent their' giving a low murmuring flap now and then, when 
the corvette rolled ahttle heavier than usual on the long swell. • There was 
not a' dond to be seen in the sky, not even a 'stray shred of thin flee^ 
Ipiuzelike vapour, to mark the direction of the upper current of the air, by 
Its course across the moon's disk, .which was now at the full, and about 
half-way up her track in the liquid heavens. 

The small twinkling lights from miHions of lesser stars, in that part of 
the firmament where she nuns, round as a silver pot-lid— shield I mean — 
were swamped in the flood ofgreenish- white radiance shed by her, and«i^ 
was onl]^ a few of the first ma^itude, with a planet here and there, that 
were visible to the naked eye, m the neighbournood of her crystal bright 
^obe ; but the clear depth, and dark translucent purity of the profotind| 
when the eye tried to pieree into it at^e zenith, where tne stars once rooro 
shone and sparkled thick and brightly, beyond the merginginfluetice of the 
pale cold orb, no man can describe nmo — one oouTd once — but, rest his 
soul, he 18 dead — and then to look forth far iqto the night, across the dark 
ridge of many a heaving swell of living water — but, *' Thomas Cringle, 
ahoy *- where the devil are you cruisiftg to 7" So, to come back to iny 
story. I went aft, and mounted the small poop, and looked towards the 
aforesaid moon, a glorious resplendent tropical moon, and not th)e paper 
lantern afiair hanging in an atmosphere of log and smoke, af>out which your 
blear-eyed poets haver so much.' By the %, Ih^se gentry are fond of sing- 
ing of the blessed sun — were they sailors they woald bless the ihoon also, 

and be to them, in place of writing much wearisome poetry regarding 

her blighting propensities. But' I have lost the end of my yam once more, 
in the strands of these parentheses. — Lord, what a word to pronounce in 
the plural ! — I can no mpre get out now, than a girl's silk wormfrom the 
innermost of a nest of pill boxes, where, to ride the simile to death at once^ 
I have warped the threild of my story so round and round' me, that I can't 
for the life of me unravel it Very odd aU this. Since. I have recovered of 
this fever, every thins is slack about' *me ; I cant set up the shrouds and 
backstays of my mina^ not to 'speak >of bobstays, if I should die for it The 
running rigging is all right enotish,- and the canvass is there ; but I either 
caa't set it, or when I do, I find 1 bav^ too little ballast, or I get involved 
among shoals, and white water, and breakers —don't you hear them roar t 
•— which I cannot weather, and crooked channels, under some lee-shore, 
through which I cannot scrape clear; 'So dowii must co the anchor, as at 
present, and there — there goed the chain-cable, rasning and rumbling 
through the hause-hole. But I suppose it will be all right by and by, as I 
get stronger. . 

" But rouse thee^ Thomas ! Wnbre if this end of your yam, that you an 
blarneying about?" 

^^ ** Ayast heaving, you swab you— ^ avast — if you had as much calomel 
in your corpus as fhave at this present speaking '— why yon would be a 
lad of more mettle than I take you for, that-is all. You would have about 
as much quicksilver in your stomadi, as I have in my pune^ and all my 



vou omjMmiA^B u», 1S7 

tilvef hiM been quiek, 9fet since I lemember, Hke the jeits of the grave-dig', 
ger in Uamlet — but, as yoU say, wnere the devil is the end of this yam W 

Ah, here it is ! so offvire go again — and looked forward towards Uie ris- 
ing moon, whose shining wake of g^ow- worm 'coloured light, sparkling in 
the small waves, that danced Jn the geittle^ind on <the heaving bosom of 
the dark bliie^ea, was right ahead of ns, like a river of quicksilver with, 
its coxsrse diminished in me distance to a ^ointy.ilowlBg towards us, firom 
the extreme verge of the horizon,- •throosh a rolliiig sea of ink, with the wa* 
ters of which for a^timejt disdained to Itlend. Concentrated, and shining 
like polished'sHveriUar off— > intense and sparklins as it streamed down 
nearer, but becbming less and less brilliant as it wideped in its approach to 
08, untH, like the stream of the great estuary of the Magdalena, losing its^ 
in the salt waste of wat0r0, it gradually melted heneat^ me and around us 
into the darkness. ' • 

I looked aloft — every object appeared sharply cut out against the itkk 
.firmament, and the swajiine of the ips^uheads to and fro, as the vessel 
rolled, was so. steady and slow, that th^ seemed stationary, while it was 
the moon and stars which appeared, io vibrate and swing from side to side, 
high over head, like the vacilhltion of the clouds in a theatre, when the scene 
is first let down. 

The masts, and yards, and standing and running rigging, looked like 
Uaek -pillars,' and bars, and wires of iron, reared against ue sky, by some 
might}! ^ipirit of the ni^ht ; and the sails, as the moon shone dimly through 
tliem, was as dark as if they, had been tarpawlings. But when I walked 
forward and looked aft, what a beauteous change ! Now each mast, with 
its gently swefling canvass, the higher sails decreasing in size, until they 
tapered away nearly to^ a point, mrough topsail, topgallant-sail, royal and 
sk^sails, showed like towers of snow, and the cordage like silver threads, 
while each dark spar seemed to be of ebony, fished with ivory, as a flood of 
cold; pale, mild li^ht streamed from the beauteous planet over the whole 
stupendous machine, Ughting up th^ sand- white depks, oq which the shad- 
ows of the men,' and ofevery object that intercepted the moonbeams, were 
aast as strongly as if'the planks had been inlaid with jet 

There was nothing moving about thef decks.' The look-outs, af^, and at 
Ihe^Bgwaysy sat or stood tike statues, h^lf bronze, half alabaster. The 
jM quarter-master, who was ounning the sqiipy and had perched himself on a 
carronade, with his arm leaning on the weather nettings, was equaUy mo- 
tbonless. The wato&^liad aU disappeard forward, or wer^ stowed out of 
sight under the leetn thd boats j the first lieutenant, as if captivated by 
the ser^ity of the scencj was leaning, with folded arms on the weather- 
gangway^i looking aWoad upon the eceanr^^d whistling now and then 
either for a wind,, or for want Qf (bought The only being who showed 
sign of life was $he maftat the wheel, and he .scarcely moved,- except now 
•and, then to give her a spolfe or two,. When the cheep of the^tillei^rope, run- 
ning through the weU-greased leading blocks, would grate on the ear as^^ 
soand x>f some importanee ; while in daylight, in the ordinary bustle of tne 
ship, no Qoe coula s^ be ever hleard it 
Three bells \ — *'Keep a bright look-!out there," sung out the lieutenant 
** Ay,\ay, sir.*' from the four Igbk-out men, in a volley. 
Then from the weather-gangWa^, ^ All's w^ll " rose shrill into the night 



The watchword was echoed by.the Atari on the forecastle, rorschoed by 
' Uie lee-gangway look-out, and- ending wit^ the response of the man on the 
Boop. My dream was dissipated — and so was the first lieutenant's, who 
Asd but tittle poetry in lyis composition, honest man. 

^ Fine nig^ Me. Cringle. LocAl aloft, how beaatifuUy set the sails are ; 



ISd , mcu imtmrnufB x.6*. 

f that miaea-topsaSl ift wffl cut, eht Sits weUy«.<l<mt it 7 Bat'— eoAfoaild 
y the lubbers ! Boatswain's mate, call the watch.** 

. Whi-whew, whi-whew, c|iirnip, chip, chip— the deck was alive in an 
r. instant, ** as bees biz out wi' angry tykel** 

" Where ia the cafrtain of the.miien»tap1''' gpx>wled the man in authoritr. 
f "Here, sir." 

''• '* Here, sir ! — look at the weather*e}ew of the' ittizen-topeail, sir, — ]o(4t 
at that sail, sir, — hoW man^ twms can yoh count ii) that dew, sir ? Spring 
k, you ncksailor yoa~^ spring it^ and set the sail again. 

How weary, stale, flat, an({ anpit>fitable all* this appeared to me at the 
time I well remember ; but the obnoxious turns were shaken out, and the 
•ail set again 'se as to plea^. -even the fastidious eye of the lieutenant, 
who, seeing noOiihg more to find fault with, addressed me once more. 

'* Have hkd no grub since morning, Mr. Cringle ; all the others are away 
in the prizes ; you are as good as one of us now, only want the order to 
join, you know — so will you obligcme, and take charge of the deck, until' 
I go below and change my clothes, aiid gobble a bit ?" 

** Unqnestionably, — with much [Measure.'*' 

He Ibrthwldi dived, and I walkeo ^ a few steps towards wherp the 6ld 
quarter-master was standing on the gun. 

** How is her head, Cluarter-master ?" 

** South-east and by south, sir. If ths wind holds, we shall wea&€# 
Morant Point, I think, sir." 

** Very like — very like. — What is that glancing backwards and fes* 
wards across the poi^-hole there, Gtuartcr-master?'* * 

"I told*]^on so, Mafame," said the man; *' what are }^ou skylariung^ 
about the mizen-chatns, for, man ? —^ Come in, will you, come in," 

The captain's caution to his servant flaiahed on me. 

" Come in, my man, and give my re9pect8 to the captain, and tell hftt 
that I am quite well now ; the fresh air kas perfectly restored mo.*^ 

*| I will, sir," said Mafame, half ashamed at'bcing detected in his o0ice 
of inspectovogeneral of my actions ;^ but the doelor, to>whora he bad bees 
sent, having now got a leisure moment from* his labour in the shamblss^ 
came up and made inquiries as to how I felt. 

^ Wny, Doctor, I thought I was in -for a fever half en hour ago,%pt it is 
ovrite gone ofl^ or neatly so — there, leel tay pulse.*' ^ It was segQlar, and 
tbere was no particular heat of skin. 

'* Why, I don't think there is much the m'attdr with vea; Mafame, tell the 
captain so ; but turn in and take' somejrest assocHi as ybe can, and"! will s^ 
you in the momin|^-^and her^," feeling. in his waistcoat pocket." here area 
couple of cape^ for *you';« take them now, will you?'**-^ (Ana he himded 
me two blue pills, whicfi 1 the next moment chucked overboard, to ewe 
some bilious dolphin ef the liver complaint) I onmiised to do qo whenever 
the lieutenant relieved the decK, whiel} weola, I made no questiei^ bB' 
.ivHhin half an hour. 

" Very well, that will do — goT)d-night . T.am regOderiy done up myself,* 
quoth the medicoj as he descended to the* guifteonK . 

At this time of ni^t, the'prizes were ail in a cluster under our lee qaar<« 
ter, like small icebergs covered 'with snow, end canying eveiy ra^g tbc? 
could set The Gleam was a good way astern, as if t6 wbkp th^m in, and 
to take care that no stray picaroon should make a dash at any 'of thcnub 
They slid noiselessly along like phanto^is 1)f the de<fp', eveiytliing in'^the 
eir a'nd'in the watSr was so still'— I crossed to the lee side 'of the deck ts 
look at them— The Wave, seeing some dne on the hammock*nettin& 
sheered close to, under the Firebrand's lee qoarte^ and some one askeS( 
*<I>o you want to speak us?" The nrna's voice, tefliMt^ fton the con- 



^OM OftTHGLlb's LOO. 1S9 

ote mufi&ee of the tcbooner'fl mainsail, had & hoUo'w, ediokig sound 
that startled me. 

" I should know that Ydtce," said I to myself, ''and' the figure steering 
tile schoon^." The throbbing in my head and the dizzy feel, whidh. had 
capsized my judgment in the cabin, again returned with increased violence 
' — ** It was no d^eptiott after all,** thought I, ** <io cheat of the senses — 
! now believe sudi things are." 

The same voice now called out, " Come away, Tom, come •way," no 
doubt fo some other seaman on board the little vessel, but my heated fancy 
did not BO construe it The cold breathless fit again oveitook me, and 1 
ejaculated, ** God have mercy upon me a sinner!"* 
** Why don*t you come, Tom?** said the voice once more. 
It was Obed^s. At this very instant of time, the Wave forged ahead ' 
into the Firebrand's shadow, so that her sails, but a moment before white 
as wool in the bri^t moonbeams, suffered a sudden e6lipse, and became 
black as ink. 

*' His dark spirit is there,'* said f, audibly, "and calls me — go I w\% 
whatever njay beftdl." 

I hailed the schooner, or rather I had GiAy to speak, and that in a Idw 
tone, ibr she was now close^under the counter — f* Send your boat, for 
since you call, I know I must come." 

A small canoe sUd off her deck ; two shipboys got into it, and pulled 
mto the starboiud mizen-cbains, which entirely concealed them, as they 
held on for a moment with a boat-hook in the dark shadow of the ship. 
^This was done so silently, tiiat neither the look-out on &e poop, who was 
father on the weather-side at the moment, nor the man at the lee gangway, 
who happened to be looking out fbrward, heard them, or saw me, as I 
slipped down unperceived. 
"Pull back again, my lads; quick now, quickv" 
In a moment, 1 was alongside, the next T was on deck, and in tins short 
space a change had come over the spirit of ray dream, for I now was again 
coascioits Chat I wis on board the Wave with a prize crew* My imagina- 
tion had taken another direction. 

"Now Mr. — ^, I beg pardon, I foiget ydur name,*^ — I had never he^rd 
it — ** make more sail, and haul out from the fieet for Mancheoneal Bay; 
I have despatches for the admiral — So, crack on." 
' The midshipnmn who was in charge of her never for an instant doubted 
but that all was right ; sail was made, and as the light breeze was the very 
thing for the little Wave, she began to snore through it like smoke. When 
she had shot a cable's length ahead of the Firebrand, we kept away a point 
Or two, so as to stand more in for 'the land, and, like most maniacs, I was 
mwardly exultii^g at the success of my manoeuvre, when we heard the 
corvette's bell struck rapidly. Her mamtopsail was suddenly laid to the 
mast, whilst a loud voice echoed amon^ the sails — " Any one see him m 
the waist — anybody see him forward mere V^ 
"No, sir, no." ^ 

** Afterguard, fire, and let go the fiffe-buoy— lower away the quarter- 
boats — jdly-boat also." 

We saw the flash, and presently the small* blue li*ht of the buoy, blazing 
Mid disappearing, as it rose and fell on the waves, m the corvette's wake, 
sailed away astern, sparkling fitfuDy, like an ignis fatuus. The cordage 
rattled through the davit blocks, as' the boats dashed into the water— the 
•plash of the oars was heard, and presently the twinkle of the life-buoy 
was lost in the lurid glare of the blue lights, held aloft in each boat, where 
the crews were standing up, looking like Mectres by the ghastly blaze^ 
tad anxiously peering about for some sign of the drowning man, 

45—3 



140 TpK osmaLB's Loa. 

<< A man overboard,** was repeated fiom one to another of the piue enw, 

''Sure enough," said t. 

** Shall we atand back, sir 7** aaid the midshipman. 

*<To what purooee?— there are enough .there witheat iif---iio^ no; 
erack on, we can do no good — carry on — carry on !'* 

We did so, and I now found aevere shooting pains, more racking than 
the sharpest rheumatism I had ever suffered, pervacUng 'my whole body. 
They increased until I suffered the most excruciating agony, as if my 
bones had been converted into red-hot tubes of iron, and thct marrow in 
them had been dried up with fervent heat, and I was obliged \o b^ that a 
hammock might be spread on deck. On which I lay down, pleading great 
fatigue and want of sleep as my excuse. 

My thirst was unquenchable ; the more I drank, the hott^ it became. 
My tongue, and mouth, and throat, were burning, as if molten lead had 
been poured down into mv stomach, while the most violent retching came 
on every ten minutes. Tne prize crew, poor fellows, did all they could — 
once or twice they seemed about standing back to the ship, but, ** make 
sail, make sail," was my only cry. They did so, and there I lay, without 
anything between me and the wet planks but a thin sailor's blanket and 
the canvass of the hammock, through the Ijprelon^ night, and with no coy« 
ering but a damp boat-cloak, raving at times during the hot fits, at others 
having my power, of utterance frozen up during the cold ones. The 
men, once or twice, ofiered to carry mie below, but the idea was horrible 
tome. 

" No, no — not there — for heaven's sake not there ! If you do take um 
down, I am sure I shall see him, and the dead mate -» No, no — overboard 
rather, throw me overboard rather.*' 

Oh, what would I not have given for the luxury of a flood of tears I — 
But the fountains of mine eyes were dried up, and seared as with a red-hot 
iron — my skin was parched, and hot, hot, as if evexy pore had been her- 
meticallv sealed ; there was a hell within me and about me, as if the deck 
on which 1 lay had been steel at a white heat, and the gushing blood, as 
under the action of a for6e-pump, throbbed through my hnd, like it would 
have burst on my brain — and such a racking, splitting headache — no lan- 

fuage can descnbe it, and yet eve( and anon in the midst of this raging 
re, this furnace at my heart, seven times heated, a sudden icy shivering 
chiU would shake me, and pierce through and through me, even when the 
roasting fever was at the hottest. 

At length the day broke on the long, long, moist, steamy Iki^t, and once 
more the sun rose to bless every thing but n^e. As the mommg wore on, 
my torments increased with the heat, and I lay sweltering on deck, in a 
furious delirium, held down foscibly by two men, who were relieved by 
others eveiy now and then, while 1 raved about Obed, and Paul, and the 
scenes I had witnessed on board during the chase, and in the attack. 
None of my rough but kind nurses expected I could have held on till night- 
fall ; but shortly after sunset I became more collected, and, as I was after- 
wards told, whenever any little office was performed fer me, whenever 
some drink was held to my lips, I would say to the gru^ sunburnt, bladL- 
whiskered, square-shouldered (opman who might be my Ganymede for the 
occasion, *< Thank you, Mary ; Heaven bless your pale face, Maiy ; bleea 
you, bless you !*' 

. It seemed my fanqy had shaken itself clear of the fearful objects that had 
so pertinaciously haunted me befoae, and occupying itself with pleasing 
recollections, had produced a conespondins calm in the animal ; but the 
poor fellow to whom I had expreseea mys^ so endearingly, was, I teamed^ 
most awfully put out and dismayed. He twisted and turned his iron fea- 
tures into ail manner of ludicroui combinations, under the laughter af hie 



TOM CRm0tM*n LOS. 141 

isates — ''Now, Peter, may J be but I would father be siiot at, than 

hear, the poor young gentleman so ouiz me in his madness." 

Then again — as I praised his Wely taper fingers — they werv more 
like bunches of frosted carrots, dipped in a tar-bucket, with the tails snap* 
ped short ofi^ were about an inch thick, orily — * 

'* My taper fingers — oh lord ! Now, Peter, I can't stomach this any 
longer — I'll give you my grog for the next two days, if you wiH take my 
spell here — My taper fin^rs — murder!" 

As the evening closed in we saw the high land of Jamaica, but it was the 
following afternoon before we were off thd entrance of Mancheoneal Bay. 
All this period, although it most have been one of great physical suffering, 
has ever, to my eUiereal part, remained a dead bluik. Tho first thing £ 
remember afterwards, was being carried ashpre in the dark in a hammock 
slung -on two oars, so as to form a sort of rude palanquin, and kud down 
at a short distance from the overseei's house where my troubles had origin- 
ally commenced. I soon became perfectly sensible and collected, but I was 
so weak I could not sp6ak ; after restinr a little, the men again lifted me 
and proceeded. The door of the dining-hall, which was the back entrance 
into the overseer's house, opened flush into the little garden throu|^ which 
we had come in — there were lights, and sounds m music^ sin^ng, and 
joviaHy within. Th^ farther end of the room, at the door of which 1 now 
i^^sted, opened into the piazza, or open verandah^ which croscted it at ri^t 
angles, and constituted me ftont of the house, forming, with this apartment, 
a figure somewhat like the letter T. I stood at the foot of the letter, as it 
were, and as I looked towards the piazza, which was gayly lit up, I could 
see it was crowded with male and female negroes in their' holyday apparel, 
with th^ wholesome clear brown-black skins, not dfve-black as they ap- 
pear in our cold country, and beautifut white teeth, and sparkling black 
eyes, among whom were several gumbie-men and flute-players, and John 
Canoes, as the- negro Jack Pudding is called ; the latter distinguldbable by 
wearing white false faees, and enormous shocks of horsehair, fastened on 
to their wooUy pates. Their character hovers somewhere between that of 
a barlequin and a clown, as they dance about, and thread through the negro 
groups, quizzing the women anid slapping the men ; and at Christmas time, 
uie grand negro carnival, they don't confine their practical jokes to their 
own colour, but take all manner of comio^ liberties with the whites equally 
with their fellow bondmen. 

The blackamoor visiters had- suddenly, to all appearance, brc^en off their 
dancii|g, and were now clustered behind a rather remarkable group, who 
were seated at supper in the dining-room, near to where I stood, forming, 
as it were, ^e fbreground in the scene. Mr. Fyall himself was there, and 
a roey-gilled, happ3(4ooking man, who I thought I had seen before ; this 
much I could discern, for uie light fell strong on them, especially on the 
fiice4f the latter, which shone like a star of the first magnitude, or a light- 
house in the red gleam — the usual family of the overseer, the book-keepers 
that is, and the worthy who hiid been the proximate cause of all my siifler- 
ings, the ovorseer himself, were t&ere too, as if they had been still sitting 
at table where I saw them now, ever, since I left them three weeks before 
—-at least my fkncy did me the favour to annihilate, for theuonee, all inter- 
mediate time between the point of my departure on the night of the cooper's 
funeral, and ^ moment when I now revisited them. 

I was lifted out of the hammock, and supported to the door between two 
seamen. The fresh, nice-looking man before mentioned^ Aaron Bang, 
Ssqwre, by nalme, an incipient planting attorney in the neighbourhood, of 
great promise, was in tiie act of singing a song, for it was during some 
holyday time, which had broken down uie stiff observances of a Jamaica 
^bnler^ life* There he sat, loliing back ofi his chair, with his feet upon 



14t ten osnrcHUi't uHh 

the tal^, and actgur, half coBsiiiiied,ia his haad. He had twisted BpUb 
mouth and mirth-prorokihg noae^ which, by an unaccountable control over 
aome muade, present in the visage of no other human being^ he made to 
describe a Bmail drele round the centre of his face, and slewing his head 
on one side, he was warbling, ore rbtvndot some melodious ditty, with infi- 
nite complacency, and, to all appearance, to the great delist of his audi- 
tory, when his eyes ligbted on me, — he was petrified in a moment, — I 
seemed to have blastecThim, — his warbling ceased instantaneously, — the 
colour faded from his clieeks, — but there he sat, with open mouth, and in 
the same attitude as if he still sung, and I had suddenly become deaf, or as 
if he and his immediate eompotators, and the gronp of blaekies beyond, 
had all been on the instant turned to stone by a slap from one of their own 
John Canoes. I must have been in truth a terrible spectacle ; my skin 
was yellow, not as saffixm, butras' the skin of a ripe lime ; th^ white of my 
eyes, to use an Irishism, ditto; my mouth and lips bad festered and broh^ 
ouij as we say in Scotland ; my head was bound round with a napkin — 
none of the cleanest you may swear ; mv dress was a pair of <firty duck, 
trousers, and my shirt, with the boat'Cleak that had been my only coim* 
terpane ^n board of the litUe vessel, han^ng from my shoulders. 

Laauirus himself could scarcely have been a more appalling object, when 

the voice of him who spoke as never man spake, said, <* Laaaros come 

* forth." ^ 

I made an unavailing attempt to cross the threshold, but could not^ I 
was spellbound, or there was an invisible barrier erected against me, which 
1 could not overieap. The buzzing in my ears, the pain and throbbing in 
my head, and raclung aches, once more bent me to the earth-* ill and 
reduced as I was, a relapse, thoueht 1 ; and* 1 felt my judgment once more 
giving way before the sweltering fiend,. who had retreated but for a moment, 
to renew his attacks with still greater fierceness. The moment he once 
more entered into me — the instant that I was possessed — I cannot call it 
by any other name — an unnatural strength pervaded my shrunken muscles 
and emaciated frame, and I stepped bolcUy into the halL While I had stood 
at the door, listless and feeble as a obild, nanging on the arms of the two. 
topmen, after they had raised me from the hammock, the whole party had 
sat silently gazing at me, with theur faculties paralyzed with terror. But 
now. When I stumped into the nom like the marble statue in Don Juan, 
and glared on them, my eyes sparKling with. unearthly brilliancy under die 
fierce distemper which hajd anew thrust its- red-hot fingers into my msw, 
and was at the moment seething my brain in its hellish caldron, the negieee 
in the piazza, one and all, men, women, and children, evanished into the 
night, and the whole party in the foregroimd started to th^ legs, as if thi^ 
had been suddenly galvanized ; the table and chairs were overset, and 
whites and blacks trimdled, and scrambled, and bundled over and over each 
other, neck and crop, as if the very devil had come to invite them to dlsRer 
m propria persona, horns, tail, and aU. 

" Duppy come ! Duppy come ! Massa Tom Cringle ghost stand for we 
at door ; we all shall dead, oh — we aU shall go dcAd, oh V* bellowed the 
father of gods, my old ally, Jupiter. 

" Guide guide us, that's an awfu' sicht !** quod the Scotch book-keeper. 

« By the hockey, speak, if you be a ghost,. ok PU exercise [exorcise] ye 
wid this butt of a musket,'* quoth the cowboy — an Irishman to be sure, 
whose round bullet head was discernible in the human mass, by his black, 
twinkline, balf-drunkenrlookiog eyes. 

'* WelT-a-day$'' gmaned ano£er of them, a Welshman, I believe, with a 
face as long as my arm, ai\4 a diawl worthy of a methodist parson ; <<and 
what can it be -^ fiesh and blood it is not —r can these dry bones live ?" 

Ul as I was, however, I coqjd peceeive that all this xew had tiow noie 



TOM OftlVGXS's LOO. 143 

«f A t>P^ frolic in it -* whatever it might have had at fictt -^ than abiolnte 
fear ; for the red-faced visiter, and Mr. Fyall, as if hatf ashamed, 8[>eedily 
extricated themselves from the diaos of chairs and living creatures, righted 
the table, replaced the candles, and having sat ^wn, looking as ^ve as 
judges on the bench, Aaron Bang exclaimed — ** FU bet a dozen, it is the 
poor fellow himself returned on our hands, half-dead from the rascally treat* 
meat he has met with at the h^ads of these smuggling thieves I" 

<* Smugglers or no," said Fyall, *' you are right fo^: once ; my peony rose, 
I do believe." 

But Aaron w^ a leetle staggered, notwithstanding, when I stumped to- 
wards him, as already desociibed, and he shifted back and back as I advanced, 
with a most laughable oast of countenance, between jest and earnest, while 
Fyall kept shouting to him-- ** If'it be his ^lost, try him in Latin, Mr. 
Bang >- speak Ltatin to him, Aaron Bang >-* nothing for a ghost like Latin, 
it is their mother tongue." 

Bang, who, it seemed, plumed luraself on his erudition, forthwith began 
— ''Glu» maribus solum tribuuntur." — Aaron's conceit of excnrcising a 
Bfurit with the fag-end of an old grammar rule would have tickled me under 
iDOet circumstances ; but I wsb mr past laughing. I had more need, Gh>d 
help me, to pray* I made another step. He -nitcli^d his chair back. ** Bam, 
Bo, Rem !" shouted the incipient planting attorney. Another hitch, which 
canied him clean out of the supper-room, and across the narrow piazza | 
but, in this last movement, he made a regular false step, the two back-feet 
of his chair dropping over the first step of the front stairs, whereupon he 
lost his balance, and topplins over, vanished in a twinkling, and rolled 
down half-a-dozen steps, he^s over head, until he lay sprawUns on the 
inanger or male-trough before the door, wherei the beatteties are ^ under 
busha*s own eye on all estates — for this excellent and most cogent reason, 
that otherwise the maiae or ^uinea-com, belon{^ng of ri^t to poor imiio, 
would generally go towards improving the condition, not of the quadruped, 
but of the biped quashie who had cwge of him — and there he lay m a 
convulsion oi laughter. 

The two seamen, who supported me between them, were at first so com* 
pletely dumbfoundered by all this, that they could not speak. At length, 
however, Timothy Tailtackle lost his patience, and found his tongue. 

« This may be Jamaica frolic, good gentlemen, and all very comical in 
its way ; but, damn me, if it be either gentlemanlike or Chnstianlike, to 
be after funning and fuddling, while a fellow-creature, and his majesty's 
commissioned officer to boot, ^ands before you, all but dead of^one of your 
blasted fevers." 

The honest fellow's straightforward appeal, far froi^ giving ofTence to the 
kind-hearted people to wnom it was maae, was not only taken in good part, 
but Mr. Fyall himself took the lead in setting the whole household immedi- 
ately to work, to have me properly care<j^for. The best room in the house 
was given up to me. I was carefully shifted and put to bed ; but during 
all that night and the following day, I was raving in a furious fever, so that 
I had to b« forcibly hel4 down in-my bed, sometimes for half an hour at a 
time. • • , . 

4^ ^ * * 41 % 4( 

1 say, messmate, have you ever had the yellow fever, the vomttoprtefo, black 
vomit, as the Spaniards call it ? — No ? ^-have you ever had a bad bilious 
fever then ? No bad bilious fever either? — Why, then, you are a most un- 
fortunate creature ; for you have never known what it was to be in Heaven^ 
nor eke the other place. Oh the delight, the blessedness of the languor of 
laoovery, when one finds himself in a large airy room, with a dreamy indis- 
tinct recollection of great past sufiering, endured in a small miserable vessel 
within Uie tropics, mere jou have baea roasted one moment by the vertical 
3* 



144 TOM CBIVtfLB't hOOm 

nfB of the fun, and the next annealed hissing hot by the salt sea spiay ;'—> 
in a broad Ivauorions bed, some cool sunny morning, with the fresh sea-breeze 
whistling throogh the open windows that look into the piazza, and rasffinff 
the folds of the clean wiie-ganze muBonito net that serves you for bedP 
curtains ; while beyond yon look forth into the sequestered court-yard, 
overshadowed by one vast umbrageous kennip-tree, that makes eveiything 
look ^reen and cool and fresh beneath, and whose branches the rushing 
wind IS raspine cheerily on the shinies of ttte roof — and oh, how passing 
sweet is the lullaby from the humming of numberless glancing bright- 
hued flies, of all sorts and siles, sparkling among tiie green leaves uke 
chins of a prism, and the fitful whirring of tl|e &iry.€tting humming- 
biroy now here, now there, like winged gems, or livins *' atoms of tM 
rainbow,*' round which their tiny wings, moving too X]ui<£ly to be visible, 
form little haloes — * and the palm-tree at the muse-comer is shaking its 
long hard leaves, making a sound for all the world like the pattering of rain ; 
and the orange^tree top, with ripe fruit, and green fruit, and white blossoms, 
is waving to and fro flush with the window-sill, dashing the frajgrant odour 
into your room at every wkish ; and the double jessamine is twining up the 
papaw (whose fruit, ifrubbed on a bull's hide, immediately converts it into 
a tender beefsteak) and absolutely stifling you with sweet perfome ; and 
then the sangaree — old Madeira, two parts of water, no more, and nut- 
meg — and not a taste out of a thimble, but a rummerfiil of it, my boy, 
that would droWn your first-bom at his christening, if he slipped into it, nnd 
no stinting in the use of this ocean ; on the contrary, the tidy old brown 
nurse, or mayhap a buxom young one, at your bedside, with ever and anon 
a *Meetle more panada," (damn panada, I had forgotten that !) *'and den 
some more sangaree ; it will do massa ^Dod, trenthen him tomack " — and 
— but I am out of breath, and must lie to for a brief space. 

1 opened my eyes late in the morning of the second day after landing, 
and saw Mr. Fyall and the excellent Aaron Bang silting one on each side 
of my bed. ANhough weak as a sucking infant, I had a strong persuasion 
on my mind that all danger was over, and that I was convalescent I had 
no feverish symptom whatsoever, but fdt cool and comfortable, with a fine 
balmy nHNsture on my skin ; as yet, however, I spoke with great difficulty. 

Aaron noticed this. 

'^Dont exert yourself too much, Tom ; take it coolly, man, and thank 
Gk>d that you are now fairly round the comer. Is your head painful ?" 

«« No— why should it 7^' 

Mr. Fyall smiled, and I put up my hand — it was all I could do, for my 
limbs appeared loaded with lead at the extremities, and when I touched any 
part of my frame, with my hand for instance, there was no concurring sen- 
sation conveyed by the nerves of the two parts ; sometimes I felt as if 
touched by the hands of another ; at others, as if I bad touched the person 
of some one else. When I raisad my hand to my forehead, my ringers 
instinctively moved to take hold of my hair, for I was in no small deg^ 
proud of some luxuriant brown corls, which the women used to praise. 
Alas and alack-a^ay ! in place of ringlets, glossy with Macassar oil, 1 
found a cool young tender plantain>leaf bound round my temples^ 

" What is aU this ?" said T. « A kaU-blade, where my hair used to be !'' 

" How came this kale-blade here, 
And bow came it here T* 

sung friend Ban^, laughing, for he had great pmoen of tangktert and I saw 
he kept his quizzical face turned towards some object at tlMnead of the bed, 
which I could not see. ' 
•*Tou may say that, Aaron, — whiere's my wig, you rogue, «h t* 



" Never mind, Tom,'' said FyaU, <' your hait will soon grow agun, won^ 
it, imas ?" 

<* Miss ! miss !'' and I screwed my neck round, and lo ! — *' Ah, Maiy, 
and are you the Delilah who have shorn my locks — you wicked young 
female lacdy you !" 

She smiled and nodded to Aaron, who was a deuced fayourite with the 
ladies, black, brown, and white, (I gjire the pu to the staple of Uie country 
•V. hope no offence,) as well as with «feiy one else who ever knew him. 

^How dare you,, friend Bang, shave and blister my head, you dog?" 
said I — <* You cannibal Indian, you have scalped me ; you are a'tegular 
Mohawk." 

"Never mind, Tom — never mind, my boy,'*' said he. <* Ay, you may 
blush, Mary Palma. Cringle there will fight, but he will have * Palmam 
qui meruit tent ' for lus motto yet. take my word for it" 

The sight of my cousin's lov^y face, and the heavenly music of her 
tongue, made me so fbrgivins, that I could be angry with no one. — ilt 
this moment a nice-looking elderiy man slid into the room as noiselessly as 
a cat 

^'How are you. Lieutenant? Why, you are positively gay this nlom* 
ing ! Preserve me ! — why have you taken <^ the dressing from your 
head ?" 

" Preserve me — you may say that. Doctor — why, you seem to have pre- 
served me, and pickled me auer a very remarkable fashion, certainly t 
Why, man, do you intend to make a mummy of me, with all your swath- 
ings ? Now, what is that crackling on my <^hest? More plantain leaves, 
as Hive I" 

" Only another blister, sir." 

"Only another blister — and my feet — Zounds ! what have you been 
doing With my feet ? The soles are as tender as if I had been bastina- 
doed:'' 

"Only cataplasms, sir; mustard and bird-pepper poultices — nothing 
more." 

"Mustard and bird-pepper poultices! — and Jray, what is that long 
fiddle-case supported on two' chairs in the piazza r' 

" What case ?*' said the good doctor, ana his eye followed mine. " Oh, 
my gun- case. I am a great sportsman, you must know — but draw down 
that Dljnd, Mr. Bang, ifyou please, the breeze is too strong." 

"Gun-case! I would rather have taken it for your game-box, Doctor. 
However, thank^ be to Heaven, you have not hinged me this bout" 

At this moment, I heard a violent scratching and Jumping on the roof of 
the house, and presently a loud croak, and a strong rushing noise, as of a 
large bird taking flight — " What is that, Doctor ?" 

" The devil," said he, laughing, " at least your evil genius, Lieutenant 
— it is the carrion crows, the large John -Crows, as they are called, flying 
away. They have been holding a council of war upon you since esfiy 
dawn, expecting (I m^y tell you, now you are so well) that it might likely 
soon turn into a coroner's inquest" 

<* John-Crows!— : Coroners inquest! — cool shavers those West India 
chaps, after all !" muttered I ; and again I lay back, and ofiered up my 
heart- warm thanks to the Almighty, for his great mercy to me a sinner. 

My auat and cousin had been on a visit in the neighbourhood, and over- 
ni^t Mr. Fyall had kindly sent for them to receive my last sish, for to all 
appearance I was fast going. Oh, the gratitude of my heart, uie tears of 
joy I wept in my weak blessedness, and the overflowing of heart that I ex- 
perienced towards that almighty and ever-merciful Being who had spared 
me, and brought me out of my great sickness, to look round on dear friends^ 
and on the idol of my heart, once more, after all my grievoas sufibiings ! : I 



146' rou ckikoIik's tj64: 

took Mary's hand! ^I could not raise it for ladc of strength, or 1 Woatf 
have kissed it ; but, as she leaned over me, Fyall came behind her ai^ 
aently pressed her sweet lips to nnne, while the dear girl bludied as redlH 
Aaron Bang^s face. By this my annt herself had come into the room, mii8 
added her warm congratulations, and last, although not least, Timothy 
Taikackle made his appearance in tiie piazKa at the window, with a clean, 
joyful, well-shaven countenance. He srinned, turned his quid, pulled up 
his trousers, smoothed down his- hair iHtn his hand, and gave a sort of halt 
tipsy shamble, meant for a bow, as he entered the bed-room. 

'* YoH have fbrereached on Davy, this time, sir. Heaten be praised for 
it ! He was close aboard of you, howsomdever, sir, once or twice.^ T^hen 
he bowed round the room again, with a sort of swing or caper, whichever 
you choose to call it, as if Ae had been the party obliged. " Kind, folk, 
these, sir," he continued, in what was ipeant for sdtto voce, and for my ear 
alon^, but it was more like the growling of a mastiff ptfppy'than anyuiing 
else. '* Kind folk, sir — bad as their mountebanking looked the first ni^fat, 
sir — why. Lord bless your honour, may they make a marine of- me, if tney 
han^t set a Bungo to wait on us, Brll and I, that is — and we has groS 
more than* does us good — and grub, my eye ! — only think, sir — Bill and 
Timothy Tailtackle waited on by a black Bungo !" and he doubled himself 
up, chuckling and hugging himself with infinite glee. 

" All now went merry as a marriage bell." I was carefully conveyed 
to Kingston, where I rallied under my aunt^s hospitable roof, as rapidly 
almost as I had sickened, and within a fortnight, all b^-past strangeness 
eixplained to my superiors, I at length occupied my berth m the Firebiand's 
gun-room, as tnird lieutenant of the ship^ 



CHAPTER XI. 



MORB SCENES m JAMAICA. 



'* There be land'-rats and water-rats — water-thievts and land-thieves ,~ I aiea» 
Itiralee.** 

Mehchart or Vxhics. 

The malady, from whose fkngS' I 6ad just escaped, was at this time 
making fearfbl ravagea among the troops and white inhabitants of Jamaica 
genenJly ; nor was. the squadron exempted from the afflicting visitation, 
although it suffered in a Smaller de^e. 

I had occasion at this time to visit Uppark camp, a militair post about 
a mile and a half from Kingston, where two regiments of infantry, aifH a 
detachment of artillery, were stationed. 

In the forenoon, I walked out in company with an officer, a relation of 
my own, whom I had gone to visit ; enioymg the fresh sea-breeze that 
whistled past us in halfa gale of wintf, althoueh the sun was vertical, and 
shining into the bottom of a pint-pot, as the saUors have it. 

The barracks were built on what appeared to me a y«ry dry situation, 
(although I have since heard it alleged that there Was a swamp to wind- 
ward of it, over which the sea-breeze blew, but this I did not see,) consid- 
erably elevated above the Imt sandy plain on which Kingston stands, and 
sloping gently towards the sea. They were splendid, latge, airy two-story 
buildings, well raised off the ^und on brick pillars, so that tn6re was a 
perfectly free ventilation of air between the surfkee of the eaith and the 
floor of the firat story,, as weft as threu^ the whole of the upper roomsr ' Ai 



TOM cringle's log. 147 

l«tff»-balcOD7, or puusst, ran alon^ the whole of the south fiK)iit, both above 
rand below, which shaded the bnck shell of the house from die sun, and 
aiiM|d|^l| cool and convenient lounge for the men. The outhouses of all 
kttMMpeB well thrown back into the rear, so that in front there waa 
nothiiig to intercept the sea-breeze. The officers' quarters stood, in ad* 
yance of the men's barracks, and were, as mipht be expected, still more 
comfortable ; and in front of all were the fiel£ofBcer's nouses, the whole 
of substantial brick and mortar. This superb establishment stood in an 
oxtensiTe lawn, not surpassed in beauty by any nobleman's park that I had 
ever seen. It was immediately after tne rains when I visit^ it ; the grass 
was luxuriant and newly cut, and the trees, which grew in detached 
olumps, wore most magnificent We blambered up into one of them, a 
large umbrageous wild cotton-tree, which cast a shadow on the ground — 
the sun being, as already mentioned, ri^bt overhead — , of thirty paces in 
diameter; but still it was but a dwarnsh plant of its kind, &r 1 have 
measured others whose gigantic shadows, at the same hour, were upwards 
of one hundred and fifly feet in diameter, and their trunks, one in particular 
that overhangs the Spanish Town road, twenty feet through of solid timber ; 
that is, not including the enormous spurs that shoot out like buttresses, an4 
ond in strong twistm roots, that strike deep into the earth, and form stays, 
as it were, to the tree in all directions. 

Our object, however — publish it not in Askalon — was, not so much to 
admire the charms of nature, as to enjoy the luxury of a real Havana cigar, 
in solitary comfort ; and a glorious perch we had selected. The shade was 
grateful beyond measure. The fresh breeze was rushing, almost roaring, 
torough the leives and groaning branches, and every^ thing around was 
green, and fragrant, and cool, and delicious ; by comparison Suit is, for the 
Siermometer would, I dare say, have still vouched for eighty degrees. — > 
The branches overhead were alive with a variety of beautiful lizards, and 
birds of the gayest plumage ; among others, a score of small chattering 
green parroquets were hoppins close to us, and playing at bopeep from the 
fower surface <^the leaves of we wild pine, (a sort of Brobdignag parasite, 
that grows, like the mistletoe, in the clefts of the larger trees,) to which they 
dttn^, as green and shining as the leaves themse^es, and ever and anon 

Sopping their little heads and shoulders over to peer at us ; while the red- 
reast^ wood-pecker kept drumming on every hollow part of the bark, 
for all the world, like old Kelson, the carpenter of the Torcn, tapping along 
the top sides for the dry rot. All around.us th^ men were lounging about 
in the shade, and sprawling on the grass in ^ir foraging caps and light 
jackeUi, with an officer here and there lying reading, or sauntering abou1| 
bearding PhoBbus himself, to wsOch for a shot at a swallow, as it skimmea 
past ; wMle goats and horses, sheep and cattle, were browsing the fresh 
grass, or sheltering themselves from the heat beneath the trees. All nature 
seemed alive and nappy — a little drowsy from the heat or so, but that did 
not much signify — when two carts, each drawn by a mule, and driven by 
a negro, approached the tree v^hereon we were perched. A solitary ser- 
geant accompanied them, and they appeared, when a bowshot distant) to 
Se loaded with white deal boxes. 

I paid little attention to them until they drove under the tree. 

"1 say. Snowdrop," said the non-commissioned officer, " where be them 
black rascals, them pioneers — where h the fateague party, my Lily-white, 
who ought to have the trench dug by this time ?" 

*« Dere now," grumbled the negro, '*dere now — easy ting to deal wid 
white -gentlemen, but debil cannot satisfy dem worsted sash." Then aloud 
— *' Mo no know, sir — me can't tell — no for me business to dig hole — I 
^mly cany what you fill him up^ wid ;" and the vampire, looking over his 



149 tOM CRuroLs'a Loa« 

ahooTder, cast his eye towards his load, and gnmed vatil his white toedt 
glanced from ear to ear. 

" Now," said the Irish sei^geanL ** I oonld hrain yon, bnf it is not n^irtb 
while !** — I question if h^ coald, howeyer, knowing as I did the tfai^Uiess 
of their skulls, — " Ah, here they coins !" — and a doien half-drunken, 
more than half-naked, bloated, Tiilanons^ookins blackamoors, with shovels 
and pick-axes on their shoulders, came along the road, ianghing and sing- 
ing most lustily. They passed.beneath where we sat, ano^ when -about a 
stonecast beyond, they all jumped into a trench Qr pit, which! had not 
noticed before, about twenty feet long, by ei^ wide. -It was atready 
nearly six feet deep, but it seemed they had instructions to sink it fiuther, 
for they first plied' their pick-axes, and then began to shovd out the earthd^ 
When they had completed their labonr, the sergeant, who'had been sapef- 
intending their operations, returned to where the carts were still stancnng 
beneath the tree. One of them • had sir coffins in if, wUti the name of the 
tenant of each» and number of his company, maikedin red dialk on die 
smallest eujd ! ^ 

** I say, Snow^hop,'' said the sergeant, '* how do youceme to have enlgr 
&fe bodies, when Cucumbershin there has six?" 

*< To be sure I hab no more as fire, and wei|dit enoasjh too. Ton ne 
see Corporal Bumblechops dere 7 Yon knows iiow big he was.'' 

" Well, but where is Sergeant Heavystem 7 why did yon not fetch him 
away with the pthers ?** 

The ne^ answered doggedly, '*Massa Sergeant, you should remember 
dem no die of consumption — cough you call him -— nor fever and ague, 
nor anyting dat waste dem — for tree nay gone -— no more -^ all were mount 
lard — ; tout and fat ; so-as fbr Sergeant Heavy8ter% him lefl^in de dead^ 
use at de hosf^tal." 

« I guessed as much; yon dingy thief^" said the sergeant, <*bnt I will 
break your bones, if you don't ^ve me a sufficing rsson wkfi you left him.** 
— . And he approached Snowdtop, with his cane raised in aet to strike. 

'*Top, massa," shouted the negro; *'me will tell yon — Dr. Plaget 
deshre oat Heavystern should be leave." 

"Confound Dr. Pfaget" — and he smote the pioneer across thepate^ 
whereby he broke his nick, althongh, as 1 anticipated, iR^thont much mnU 
ing his man — but the sergeant instantly saw his error, and with the peoe 
«fthe Imton he gave Snow(lrop a tap on the riiin-bone, that set him pimow 
ettinson one leff, with the other in his hand, like a tee»tc>>ttHn. 
" Why, sir, md you not bring as many as Gucmnbershin, sir?". 
*< Because " — screamed Showdrop, in great wratii, now aU alive md 
kicking from the smart 7- " Because Cucumbershin \^ loaded wid li^t in* 
fantry, sir, and all of mine Are grenadier, Massa Sergeant — dat dem good 
xieaeon surely!" 

" No, it is not, sir ; go back and* fetch Heafystem immediate^, or by 
the powers but I will — " 

« Massa Sergeant, you must be mad — Dr. Plaget — you won't yeeiie 
— but him say, five grenadier — especially 'wid Corporal Bumblecliop for 
one — is good load — ay, wery tif load — equal to seven tallion company 
[batailion, I presume,] and more better load, great deal, den six light in- 
fantry — beside him say, tell Sergeant Pivot to send you back at five in de 
afternoon wid four more coffin, by which tigie he would have anoder load, 
and in tnite de load was reagy prepare in de dead-house before 1 come 
away, only dem ioer« not well cold just vetJ* 

1 was mightily shocked at all this— but my chum toak it very coolly. — - 
He slightly raised one side of his mouth, and, giving a knowing wink with 

hb eye, lighted a fresh cigar, and continued to puff away with-aH the 

ponure in the world. 



«n 
noi 



TOM CKIIFOLB's LOO. 149 

At length the forenoon wore away, and the bu^es sounded for dinner, 
when we adjourned to the mese-roogi. It wae a veiy large and handsome 
Btloon, standing alone in the lawn, i&nd quite detached from all the^ other 
Iraildings, but the curtailed dimensions oi tiie table in the middle o£ it, and 
die ominous crowding together of the regimental plate, like a show-table 
ia Rundle and Bridge's back shop, gave startling proofs of the ravages of 
tke *' pestilence that.walketh in aaskness, and the destruction that wastetfa 
at noonday ;** for although the whole regiment was in barracks, there were 
k only nine covers laid, one of which was for me. The lieutenant-colonel, 
the major, and, I believe, fifteen othei>officers, had already been gathered 
to their fathers, WithiA four inonths from the day on which the re^ment 
landed from the transports, l^heir warfare was o*er» and they slept well. 
At the firsl^ when the insidious disease began to creep on apace, and to 
efince its deadly Yimlence, all was dismay and anxiety — downright, slav- 
\Af unmanly fear, even among case-hardened veterans, who had weathered 
^ whole Peninsular war, and finished off with Waterloo.-— The next 
week passed over — the mortality increasing, but the disma^r decreasing 
—and so it wore on, until it reached its horrible cUmax, at the time I speak 
0^ by which period there was absolutely no dread at all. A reckless gay- 
fl^had succeeded — not the screwing up of one's courage for the nonce, 
to mount a breach, or to lay an enemy's frigate aboard, where the substra- 
. torn of fear is present, aHhough cased over by an energetic exertion of the 
will ; but an unnatural fight-heiyrtedness, for which, account, ye philoso- 
phers, for I cannot — and this, too, among men who, although as steel in 
r the field, yet whenever a common cold overtook them in quarters, or a 
small twinge of rheumatic pain, would, under other circumstances, have 
caudled and beflannelled themselves, and bored you for your sympathy, at 
no aUowtmee, as they say. 

The major elect, that is, the senior captain, was in the chair ; as for the 
} lieutenant-colonel's vacancy, that was too high an aspiratipn for any man 
in the regiment.' A stranger of rank, aiid interest, and money, would of 
eonrse, get that step, for the two deaths in the regimental staff made but 
ene captain a major» as mj neighbour on the left hand feelingly remarked. 
All was fun and joviality ; we had a capital dinner, and no allusion what- 
ever, direct or inmrect, was made to the prevailfng mortal epidemic, until 
the surgeon came in, about eight o'clock in the evening. 

" Sit down, doctor," said the president — ;^<take some wine ; can recom- 
mend the madeira, — claret but so, so — your health." 

"The doctor bowed, and soon became as happy antl merry as the rest; 
30 we carried on, until about .ten o'clpck, when the lights began to waltz 
a little, and propagate also, and I found I had got enough, or, peradven- 
ture, a little more than enough, when the senior captain rose, and walked 
very composedly out of the room — but I noticed nim pinch the doctor's 
shoulder as he passed. 

• The medico thereupon stole .qiuetly after him; but we did not seem to 
miss either — a young sub had usurped the deserted throne,, and there we 
were all once more in full career,«8inging and , bousing, and cracking bad 
jokes to our hearts' content By-and-by, in comes the doctor once more. 

*' poctoi^" q^uoth youn^ sub, «take some wine; can't recommend the 
madeira this time," mimicking his predecessor very successfully ; *' the 
•daret, you know, has been condemned, but a little tet brandy and water, 
eh?" 

The doctor once more bowed his pate, made his hot stuff, and volunteered 
a tong.-^ After he had finished, and we had all hammered on the table to 
his honour and glory, until everything danced again as if it had been a 
matter of very trivial concern, he said, *< Sorry I was away so long ; bat 



190 tOM OKBimUb^S LO0« 

lick SpflltefdaA has g^ a damn^ tfaldL OSn, t can fc^ yao-r-eool^ 
flearcely set tiie lancet into him*- 1 diongfat I should falive to send for a 
spring i^meme — to tip him the yeterinary, yon know — and he won^ take 
poyflic t 80 1 fear he will haye bat a poor chance." 

Spatterdagh waa n<y other than mine host who had knt yacate4'! 

** what, do you really think he is in for it?" said the second oldest cm* 
tam who sat next me ; and as he spoke he drew his leg f^m beneath the 
table, and, turning out his dexter heel, he seemed to contemplate the site 
of the prospective fixed spur. 

*< I do, indeed," quoth Dr. Plaget He died wUHn three days ! 

But as I do not intend to write an essay on yellow fever^ I Will make an 
end, and get on shipboard as fast as I can, after stating one strong fiict, 
authenticated to me by many unimpeachable witnesses. It is this ; that 
this dreadful epidemic, or contagious fever — call it which toa will — has 
neyer appeared, or been propagated at or bejrood an altituae of 9000 feet 
aboye tne leyel of the sea, although people seized with it on the hot sultry 
plains, and remoyed thither, haye unquestionably died. Iff a country like 
J amaica, with a range of lolly mountains far exceeding this height, inter 
secting the isltod through nearly its whole length, might not government, 
after satisfying themselves of the truth of the fact, improve on the hint? 
Might not a main-guard suffice in Kingston, for instance, while the regi- 
ments were in quarters half-way up the Liguanea Mountains, within tweure 
miles actual distance from the town, iCnd within view of it, so that durino|^ 
the day, by a sema^ore on the mountain, and another at the barrack m 
the outpbst, a constant and instantaneous communication could be kept up, 
and, if need were, by Ughts in the night? 

The admiral, for instance, had a semaphore in the stationary flag-ship at 
Port-Royal, which communicated with another at his pen, or resid^ics^ 
near Kingston ; and this aoain rattled off the information to the mountain 
retreat, where he occasionally retired to careen ; and it is fittmg to state 
also, ^t in all the mountain distiicts of Jamaica which I yisited, there b 
abundance of excellent water and plenty of fiieL These matters are wordi 
consideration, quo would think ; however, aiUms — it is no business of 
Tom Cringle's. 

Speaking of telegraphing, I will relate an anecdote here, if you will watt 
until I mend my pen. I had landed at Greenwich wharf on duty — this 
was the nearest pcHut of communication between Port Royal and the ad- 
mirals pen — ^^ where, finding the flag-lieutenant, he drove me up in ins 
ketureen to lunch. While We wer6 regaling ourselves^ the old signal-man 
came into the piazza, and with several most remarkable obdbsances, gave us 
to know that there were fla«8 hoisted on the signal mast, at the mountain 
settlement, of which he could make nottung-^the uppermost was neither 
the interrogative^ the affirmative, nor the negative, nor m fact anything that 
with the book he could make sense of. 

** Odd enough,'* said the lieutenant j « hand me the glasd," and he peer- 
ed away forl^ a minute. " Confound me if I catt make heaas or 
tails of it either; there, Cringle, what db you thmk? How do you con- 
strue it?" 

I took the telescope. Uppennost there was hoisted on the signal-mast a 
large tablecloth, not altogether immaculate, and under it a towel, ad I 
guessed, for it was tA opaque for bunting, and too white, although I could 
not affirm that it was fresh out of the foldeither. 

" I am puzzled," said I, as 1 spied away again. Meanwhile there was ne 
acknowledgment made at oar semaphore — " There, down they go," I 
continued -^<< Why, it must be a mistake — Stop, here's a new batch soing 
up above the green trees— There goes the tameeioth osee more^ ami tiie 



%0«ei»aiiil — — dww» tohe me, if I caask/pampt.n tb> loy^nawt %• aaytigMr 
1^ a disholout— wky, it mu9t be a duhciout'' 

Tke flag0, or subatitotfls for then, streamed another miaute io the breeze, 
intt «0 thec9 was still no answer made from our end of the string, they were 
•once more hauled down — We watted another minute ^ *' Why, here goes 
<he same-sigaal up again, tabiecloth, towel, dishdout, and all — What the 
MttbU have we got here / A red ball, two pennants under— What can 
that meaa 1 — S^ **it is the bonne^ouge, or I am a DutchiaaD, with two 
abort streamers " — Another look — " A red night-cap and a pair of sUk^ 
lags, hy aU that is portentous !" -ezclaimed I. 

'* All, I see, I see4*' said the lieutenant, laughing — ''aignal-man, ao- 
iai»ipied8» k." 

It was done, and dowa came all the flags in a tricew It appeamd, on 
inquiry, that tke wasking^ cait, which ougm to have been sent up that 
moniiBg^ IkuA beeo fergotteB ; and the admiral and his secretary having 
fklden out, there was no one who could make the proper signal for it ao 
thei eld housekeeper took this singular method of luving the cart despatcb> 
«!, and it was sent efacoerdiagly. 

For the first week after I entered on my new office, I was busily engaged 
■on board ; duiin|^ which time mjr mind was quite made up, that the most 
#Mng maa in his majesty's service, bevond all compare, was Lieutenant 
Thomas Cringle, third of , the Firebrand. During this eventful period I 
never addressed a note to any friend on shore, or to a brother officer, with- 
OBt writing in the left-hand lower comer of the envelope, <* Lieutenant 
Cringe,** and dappins three dashing &c &c. kei's below the party^s name 
fat v^om it was intended. ' 

'^Mttst let 'em know that an officer of my rank in the service knows 
•emewhai of the courtesies of life, ehf > 




afterwards regularly brenzed in the sun, began to tarnish, and lose the new 
^osB, like everything else in this weary world. It was about this time, 
while sitting at bceakfast in the gunroom one fine morning, with the other 
officers of our mess, gossiping about I haxdly remember wha^ that weheaid 
the captain's voice on deck. ' 

''Call the first lieutenant." 

**He is^t breakfast, sir,^ said the maa, whoever he might have been, to 
whom the order was aiddressed. 

^ Never mind, then — Here, boatswain's mate -- Fipe away the men who 
were eaptnred in the boats ; tell them to clean themselves, and send Mr. 
— -— to me "-'(This was the officer who had been taken prisoner along 
with them in the first attack) — ** they are wanted in Kingston at the tiud 
to-day. i^Stop ^ tell Mr. Cnnsle also to get ready to go in the gig." 

The pirates, to the amount m foity-five, had been traasferred to Kings* 
ton jail some days previously, preparatoiy to their trial, which, as above 
mentioned, was fixed for this day. 

We pulled cheerily up to Kingston, and, landing at the Wherry wharf, 
naichea atons the hot dusty streets, under a broiling sun. Captain Tran* 
ton, the other Ueutenaiit, and myself, in full puff, leaduig the van, followed 
by aboot Iburteea seamen, in white straw bats, with broad black ribbons, 
vid cleaa white frocks and trousers, headed by a boatswain's soata, with 
kis siiver whisl^e hung round his neck — as respectable a tail as any Chris- 
tian eoold d^ire to swing behind him ; and, man fpr man, I would will- 
kigiy have perilled my promotioa open their walloppmg, with no ofiensive 
"W^Mipons but th^r stretckers,the/oUotoiiig:, claymores and all, of any proud, 
^greodMe, would-be>mighty noanbainser, tnat «ver turned up his 8i^»er« 



163 TOV CftlVOIA'f X.OO. 

cflioQi, wbhiky-^bloMomed snoat at Bailie Jarvie. On tiiey came, sqasre- 
ihoulderedf Darrow-flanked, tali, sttappin^ fellows, tumbling and rolling 
about tjbfi ^azzas in knots of three and mir, until, at the corner of King- 
street, they came bolt up upon a well-known large, fat, brown lady, fiimoua 
ftr faer manufacture of spruce beer. 

** Avast, avast a bit" — sung out one of tfie topmen — **let the nabs 
ktave ahead, will ye, and let's have a pulL*' 

''Here, old mother Slush," sung out another of the cutter's crew — 
^ Hand ua up a dozen bottles of spruce, do you hear?** 

''Dozen battle of pruce !" groaned the old woman — "who* shall pay 
me?* 

" Why, do you think the Firebrands ate thieves, yon old eanuy, yoo 1* 

** How muca, eh ?'* said the boatswain's mate. 

" Twelve feepennies," quoth the matron. 

*< Oh, ah !" said one of the men — *<TweAre times five is half a crown ; 
there's a dollar for you, old moUier Popandcbokem -^ now give me back five 
shillings." 

'< Eigh, oh !" whined out the spruce merchant ; ** you dem rascal, vrho 
tell you dat your d<Jlar more wort den any one else money —eh ? How 
can ffve you back five shilhng and keep back twelve feepenny — eh V 

" The culprit, who had stoidd the Cocker of the company, bad by tins 
time 'gained bis end, which was to draw the fiit damsel a step or two from 
the large tub half full of water, where the bottles were packed, and to en- 
gage her attention by stirring up her bile, or eormpHon, as they call it in 
ScoUand, while his messmates mstantly seised the opportunity, and a bottle 
a piece also, and, as I turned round to look fpr them, there they all were in 
a circle, taking me fneridian altitude of the sun, or as if they had been tak- 
ing aim at the pigeons on the eaves of the houses above than with Indian 
mouth-tubes. 

They then replaced the bottles in the tub, paid the woman more than she 
asked ; but, by way of taking out the change, they chucked her stem fore- 
most into the water among her merchandise, and then shouldered the ves- 
sel, old woman and all, ana away they staggered with her, the empty bottles 
Mattering together in the water, and the old lady swearing and bottncing 
and squattenng among them, while Jack shouted to her to hold her tongue, 
or they would let her go by the run bodily. Thus they stumped in the 
wake of their captain, until he arrived at the door of the court-house, to the 
great entertainment of the bystanders, cutting the strings that confined the 
corks of the stone bottles as they bowled uong, popping the spruce into 
each other's faces, and the faces oi the negroes, as they ran out of the stores 
to look at Jack in Ms frolic, and now and then taking a shot at the old wo- 
man's cockemony itself, as she was held kicking and spurring high above 
their heads. 

At length the captain, who was no great way ahead, saw what was going 
on, which was the signal for doucing the whole afiair, spruce-woman, tub, 
and bottles, and the party gathering themselves up, mustered close aboard of 
us, as grave as members of the general assembly. 

The regulv court-house of me city being under repair, the admiralty 
sessions were hdd in a large room occupied temporarily for the pnipose. 
At one end, raised two steps above the level of the floor, was the bencn, on 
which were seated the judge of ihe admiralty court, supported by two fkwt- 
captains in full uniform, ^ho are ex*offido judges of tms court m the col^ 
nies, one on each side. On the right, the jury, composed of merchants of 
the place, and respectable planters of the nei^bourhood, were endoeed in 
a sort of box, with a common white pine raihng separating it from the rest 
of the court There was a long table m front of the ben(£, at whic^ a lot 
of bhLck-robed deidl's limbs of lawyers were ranged— but both among 



tfamiy and on the beadi, the want of the caaliflower wigs wms tor^y felt by 
me, as well as by the seamen, who considered it little less than murdei^ 
that men in crops — black shock-pated fellows — should sit in judgment on 
their fellow-creatures, where life and death were in the scales. 

On the left hand of the bench, the motley public — white, black, and cf 
erery intermediate shade — were grouped ^ as also in front of the dock, which 
was large. It might have been made with a view to the possibility of fif- 
teen unrortnnates or so being arranged at one time ; but now there were 
no fewer than forty-three jammed and pegged together into it, like sheep in 
a Smithfied pen ue eveiung before market-day. These were the forty 
thieves — the pirates. They were all, without exception, clean, well sha- 
Tea, and deoently rigged in white trousers, linen or check shirts, and held 
their broad Panama sombreros in their, hands. 

Most of them woro the red silk sash round the waist They had gener- 
ally large bushy whiskers, aitd not a few had ear-rings of massive gold, 
(why call wearing ear-rings puppyism ? Shakspeare wore ear-rings, or the 
Chandos portrait lies,) and chains of the same metal round their neck, sup- 
porting, as I concluded, a crucifix, hid in the bosom of the shirt — A Span- 
iard can't murder a man comfortably, if he has not his crucifix about him. 

They were, collectively, the most daring, intrepid, Salvator Rosa-looking 
men I had ever seen. Most of them were above the middle size, and the 
npread of their shoulders, the grace with which their arms were hung, and 
nnely developed muscles of the chest and neck, the latter exposed con^ 
pletely by the folding back of their shirt collars, cut large and square, after 
the Spamsh fashion, beat the finest boat's crew we could muster all to nothing. 
Some of them were of mixed bloody that is, the cross between the European 
Spaniard and the aboriginal Indian of Cuba, a race long since sacrificed on 
tile altar of Mammon, the white man's god. 

Their hair, generally speaking, was long, and curled over the 'forehead 
black and glossy, or hung down to their shouldws in ringlets, that a dandy 
of the second Charles's time would have given his little finger for. The 
forehead in most was high and broad, and of a clear olive, the nose straight, 
sprin^n^ boldly from the brow, the cheeks oval, and the mouth — every 
Spaniard has a beautiful mouth, until he spoils it with the beastly cigar, a« 
fi|r as his well-formed firm lips can be spoiled ; but his teeth he generally 
does destroy early in life. Take the wnole however, and deduct for the 
teeth, I had never seen so handsome a set of men ; and I am sure no wo- 
man, had she been there, would have gainsaid me. They stood up, and 
looked forth opon their jud^s and jury Tike brave men, desperadoes tnough 
they were. They were, without exception, calm and collected, as if aware 
tiiat they had small chance of escape, but still determined not to give that 
chance away. One young man especially attracted my attention, from the 
bold, cool self-possession of his bearing. He was in the very front of the 
dock, and dresMd in no way <fiiierent firom the rest, so far as his under ^f- 
mente were concerned, unless it were that they were of a finer qfuality. lie 
wore a short ipreen velvet jacket, profusely studded with knobs and chains, 
like small chain-shot of solid ^la, similar to the shifting button lately in- 
troduced by our dandies in their waistcoats. It was not put on, but hung 
on one shoulder, being fastened across his breast by the two empty sleeves 
tied together in a knot He also wore the red silk sash, through which a 
bread gold cord ran twining like the strand of a rope. He had no ear-rings, 
but his liair was the most beautiful I had ever seen in a male — long and black, 
jet-black and glossy. It was turned up and fastened in a club on the crown 
of his head wiu a large pin, I should tather say skevfer, of silver ; but the 
oatlandi8hne88.of the fashion was net offensive, when I came to take into 
ibe account the beauty of the plaiting, and of the long raven lovelocks that 
b«iig4owii behind each of his smaH transpavnt ears, and the short Hype- 



rion-Kke enrii tbtX chutered thick and richl^jr on hif Mdi, pafe, bfovdF feff«- 
head. His eyes were larse, black, and swimming, like a woman^s ; him 
nose straight and thin ;. ana such a mouth, such anr under-kp, full and melt^ 
ing ; and teeth regular and white, and utterly free from the pollution of to* 
ftiioco ; and a beautifully moulded small chin, rounding off, and merging in 
his round, massive, muscular neck* 

I had nerer seen so fine a face, such perfection of features, and such & 
dear, dark, smooth skin. It was a finer ftice than Lord Byion's, whom- 
I had seen more than once, and wanted that hellish curt of the lip ; and, a» 
to figure, he could, to look at him, at any time have eaten up his lordship 
stoop and roop to his breakfast* It was the countenance, m a word, of & 
most beautiful youth, melandioly, indeed, aiid anxioos — evidently aaz-> 
ious ; for the large pearls that coursed each other doWn his f>reheaa and 
f heek, and the sught quivering of the under-lip, every now and then, evino 
ted the powerful stru^le thaiC was going on within. His figure was, iT 
possible, superior to his face. It was not «piite filled up, tei, as we -call it^ 
but the arch of his chest was magnificent, his shoulderv square, arms wel£ 
put on ; but his neck -* " Have you seen the Apollo, neighbour?" — *' No, 
out the cast of it at Somerset^House.'* -> ** Well, that wiU do — so yon know 
tiie sort of neck he had." His- waist was fine, hips beautifully moulded ; 
and alftough his under limbs were shrooded in nis white teousers, thej 
were evidently of a piece with what was seen and developed ; and this wa» 
Touched for by the turn of his ankle and well-shaped foot, on which he^ 
wore a small Spanish ^ss slipper, fitted with great nioet^. He was at 
least six feet two in height, ana such as I have crescribed him. There h» 
stood, with his two hands grasping the rail before him, and looking intently 
at a wigfess- law3reT who was opening the aocnsalioti, while he had o»e ear 
turned a little towards the sworn interpreter of the court, wheee province it 
was, at every pause, to explain to the prisoners what the learned gentlematt 
was stating. From time to time he said a word or two to a square-bcult^ ^'^L 
f^rocious-Iookins man standing next him, apparently abont forty years oT 
age, who, as welt as his ^How-prisoners, appeared to pay him great ie» 
spect ; and I eoutd notice the expresMon of their countenances change a» 
his rose or ftSi. 

^ The indictment had been read before I csnoe in, and, as already ineiK 
tioned, the lawyer was proceeding witbhis accusatory s|>eech, and, as it 
appeared to me, the young Spaniard had some difficulty in understanding 
the interpreter's explanation. When he saw me, he exclaimed, <*^ Ah ; aqnoa 
viene, el Senor Temente — ahora sabremos — abora, ahora ;" and he beck* 
•ned me to draw near. I did so. 

** I beg pardon, Mr. Cringle," he said in Spanish, with the ease and 
grace of a nobleman — ^ but I believe the interpreter to be incapable, and t 
am certflun that what I say is not fittin^y explained to the judges ; neither 
do I believe he can give me a sound notion of what the advocate {avocado) w 
alleging against us. May I entreat you to solicit ^e bench for permissioR 
to take his place ? I know you will expect no apology or ilhe trouble from 
a man in my situation." 

This unexf»ected' address in open eourt took me fhiilj aback, and I stop- 
ped short whil^ in the act of passing^ fhe~open space m front of the docs, 
which was kept clear by six marines in white jadkets, whose muskets, fixed 
bayonets and uniform caps, seemed out of piaee tuft my mind in a erimHial 
court. The lawyer sudoenly suspended his harangue, while the judges 
fixed their eyes on me, and so did liie audience, coiSbund then ! To be 
the focus of BO many eyes was trying to my mod^y ; for, althou^ I had 
mixed a little in the world, and was not altogether unacquainted with bet* 
termost society, still, befow any litUe manner that I had acquired, there 
was, and always wiU be, an under stratumof baahfidMss^or sbeepiiteBM^ 



TDM c&ikolb's log*. 155 

« 

lAr nuiuvaise kanU, call it which jou will ; and the torttire, the breaking on 
the wheel, with which a man of that temperament perceives the eyes of a 
whole court-honse, for instance, attracted to him, none but a bashral man 
ean understand. At length I summoned courage to speak. 

** May it please your honours, this poor fellow, on his own behalf, and on 
the part of his fellow-prisoners, complains of the incapacity of the sworn in- 
terpreter, and requests that I may be made the channel of communicatioa 
in nis stead." 

** This was a tremendous 0flR>rt, and once more the whole' blood of my 

body rushed to my cheeks and forehead, and I ** sweat extremely.** The 

judges, he of the black robe and those of the epaulet, communed together. 

"Have jou any objection to be sworn, Mr. Cringle'7»» 

''None in the least, provided the court considers me competent, and th* 

aecused are willing to trust me.** 

" Si, si !'* exclaimed the young Spaniard, as if comprehending what was 
g(Mn^ on — " Somos contentofl — todos, todos !♦* and ne looked round, like 
a pnnce, on his fellow-culprits. A low murmuring, '^ Si, si — contento^ 
oontento !** passed among the sroup. 

^The accused, pleasfi your honours, are willing'to trust to my correct- 
ness.** 

^ Pray, Mr. Cringe, don*t make yourself the advocate of these men, 
mind that,** said the lawyer, sana wig. ' 

'*I don't intend it, sir^** I said, slightly stung ; <<but it you had sufiered 
what I have done at their hands, peradvenharet such a caution to you would 
have bee.n unnecessary.** 

The sarcasm told, 1 was glad to see ; bnt remembering where I was, 1 
hauled out of action with the man of Words, simply giving the last shot, — 
''I am sure no English genUeinanj^ a Uetle emphasis on tbe word, <' will 
throw any difficulty in the way of the poor fellows being made aware of 
what is given in evidence against them, bad as they may oe." 

He was about rejoining, for a lawyer would as soon let you have the 
last word as a sweep or a baker the wall, when the officer of the court 
proached and swore me in, and the trial proceeded. 

The whole party weye proved by fifty witnesses to have been taken in 
vnns on board of the schooners in the Cove ; and farther, it was proved 
that no commission or authority to cruise whatsoever was found on booid 
•ny of them, a strong proof that they were pirates. 
" Clue dice, que dice ?*' inquired the young Spaniard already mentioned. 
I said that the court seemed to infer, and were pressing it on the jury, 
that the absence of any commission or letter of marque from a superior 
officer, or from any of the Spanish authorities, was strong evidence that 
they were marauders — in fact pirates. 

** AhV* he exclaimed ; " gracias, gracias •*» Then, with an agitated hand, 
he drew from his bosom a parchment folded like the manifest <? a merchant 
ship, and at the same moment the gruff fierce-looking, elderly man did the 
same, With another similar instrument from his own breast 

** Here, here are the commissions — here are authorities from the cap« 
taia-general of Cuba. "Read them.** 

I looked over them , they were regular to all ap]>earance ; at least as 
there were no autographs in court of the Spanish viceroy, or any of hii 
officers, whose signatures, either reed or forged^ were affixed to the instni- 
fflenls, with which to compare them, there was a great chance, I oonjectared, 
w> far as I saw, that they would be acquitted ; and in this case we, his 
majesty's officers, would have been converted into the transgressing party; 
fer if it were established that the vessels taken were hona-fde Gxwtda CotUu^ 
^« should be placed in an awkward predicament, in having captured them 
4* 



W TOM CBlKOIiV's LOOU 

bj force of amuy not to t«ke into aocoimt the having violated the senctlty 

or ft friendly port 

fiut I could see that this unexpected production of regular papers by 
their officers had surprised the pirates themselves, as mnch as it had done 
me, — whether it was a heinous ofience of mine or not to conceal this im- 
' pression from the court, (there is some dispute about the matter to this hour 
Detween me and my conpcience^) I cannot tell, but I was determined to 
stick scrupulously to the temporary duties of my office, without stating 
what I suspected, or even translating some sudden expressions overheard 
. by me, that would have shaken the credibility of the documents* 

" Comissiones, comissiones !'' for instance, was murmured by a weather- 
beaten Spaniard, with a fine bald head, from which two small tufls of gray 
hair stood out above his ears, and with a superb Moorish face — " Conoia- 
■ones es decir patentea — Si hay comissiones, el Diablo mismo, les ha, 
becho !*' 

The court was apparently nonplussed — not so the wigless man of law.. 
Hb pea-^een visage assumed a more fiendish hue, and the expression of 
Us eyes became damnable and blasting. He looked altogether like a cat 
sore of her mouse, but wiUiag tolet it play in faiicied ioy of escaping, as he 
said softly to tfie Jew crier, who was perched in a high chair above the 
heads of the people, like an ugly corbU m its dizty nest — **Cner, call Job 
Rumbletithump, mate of the Porpoise." 

** Job RumbletiUkumf, come into oonrt I" 

'* Here,'' quoth Job, as a stout blufifhonestrlooking sailor rolled into the 
vntness's box. 

*' Now, clerk of the crown, please to swear in the mate of the Porpoise.'' 
It was done. *< Now, my man, you were taken going through the CaiooA 
Passage in the Porpoise by pirates, in August last — were you not?" 

« Yes, sir." 

**Tum your face to the jury, and speak up, sir. Do you see any of the 
konest men who made free with you in that dock, sir 7 Look at them, 
air." 

The mate walked up to the dock, stopped, and fixed his eyes intently on the 
young Spaniard. I stared breathlcs^y at him also. He grows pale as death - 
— hislips quiver — the large drops of sweat once mot'e. burst firom his brow. 
I grew sick, sick. 

** Yes, your honour," said the mate. 

"Yes — ah !" said the devil's limb, chuckling -^ *' we are getting on the 
trail at last Can you swear to more than one?" 

" Yes, your honour." 

« Yes I" again responded the sant wig. How many ?" 

The man counted them off. *< Fifteen, sir. That youn^ fellow there is 
the maa who cut Captain Spurtel'a throat, after violating his wife before bla 
eyes." 

''Qod for^ve me, is it possible?" gasped Thomas Cringle. 

** There's a monster in human form ibr you, gentlemen," continued devil's 
limb.. " Go on, Mr. Rumbletithump." 

*^ That othejr man next him huns me up by the heels, and seared me on. 
the bare — — " Here honest Job had just time to divert the current of his 
speech into a loud *< whew." 

<< Seared you on the wktw /" quoth the facetious lawyer, determined to 
have his jest, even in the fkce of fortv-three of his fellow-creatures trem- 
bling on the brink of eternity* * * Explain, sic, tell the court w here vou were 
■eai)ed,.and how you were seared, and all. about your being searea." 

Job twisted and lollopped about, as if he was looking out for some open-^ 
log to bolt through^ butaU eg^^ess was shut up. 

*' Why, please your honour," the eloquent blood mantling iabis honest 



.MM Qftow&ft's urn. iB7 

sonbitnit cheeks ; whQe from my heart I pitied the poor leU#v^ hr he was 
•IMolely broiling in hia ha^hfulnem — > ^ He aeareo me on •— on — Mitiy, 
l^eaee Yoor honour, be seared me oa -*• toUk a red-hot iron ! *' 

" Wny, 1 guessed as much, if he seared you at all ; but where did be 
sear you ? Gobm now," coaxingly, '* tell the ccnirt whwe sad -how he ap- 
plied the actual cautery ." 

Job being tb«8 driven to hifl wit's end, tamed and stood at bay. ** !Now 
I will tell you, your honour, if you will hot sit down for a moment, and 
aaswer me one questioik 

** To be sure ; why, Job, you brighten on us. There, I am down ^* now 
fisr your qaeetion* 

"Now, air," quoth Rumbletithump, imitating his tormentor's manner 
much more deverly Ihah 1 expected, ** what part of your honour's body 
touches yoor ehair ?" 

*' How, sir l" said the man of words— ** how dure yon, sir, take such a 
liberty, sir ?" while a murmuring langh hummed thnragh the court. 

*' Now, sir, since you won't answer me, sir," said Job, elevated by hiflr 
Tietory, while his hoarse voice roughened into a loud growl, <* I will answer 
myseUT, I was seared, sir, where you ought to be .^— " 

'* Silence I" quoth the crier, at this instant drowaing the mate's voice, so 
that I could not catch thp word he nsed. 

" And there you have it, sir. Put me in jail, if y^ like, sir." 

The murmur was bursting cfat into a gusaw, when the judge interfered* 
But there was no longer any attempt at ul-timed jesting on U^ part of the 
W,' which was but bad taste at the best on so solemn an occasion. 

Job continu«d, '* I was burnt into the very muscle, until I told Where the 
gold was stowed away.'' 

" Aha !" screamed the lawyer, forgetting his recent discomfiture in the 
gladness of his suecesa. " And ail the rest were abetting, eh 7" 

" The rest of the fifteen were,^^ sir — — *' 

Bat the prosecutor, a gkiUon in his way, had thought he had bagged ib% 
whole forW-three, Andso he uUimately did before the evening closed in, 
as most of the others were identified by other witnesses ; and when they 
coold not actually be sworn to, the piracies were brought home to them by 
circumstantial evidence ; such, fi»r instance, as having been captured on 
board of the craft we had taken, which again was identified oa the ver^' 
Vessel which had plundered the merchantmen and. murdered seveml of their 
crews, so that by six o'clock the jury had ret^imed a verdict of guilty — 
Ukd I believe there never was a juster — against &e whole of them. The 
finding, and sentense of death following thereupon, seemed not to create. 
^ strong efiisct upon the prisoners. They had ail seen how the trial was 
gomg ; and, long oefore this, the bitterness of death seemed to be past. 

, I eould hs»r one of our boat's^csew, who was standing behind me, say to 
his neighbour, " Why, Jem, surely he is in joke. Why, he don't mean to 
condemn them to be hanged striousiy, without his wig, eh ?" 

Immediately after the judgment was pronounced, which, both as to 
import, and literally, I had translated to them. Captain Transom, who was 
sitting on the bench beside his brother officers, nodded to me, " I say, Master 
Cringe, tell the coxswain to call Pearl, if you please." 

I passed the word to one of the Firebrand's marines, who was on duty, 
who again repeated the order to a seaman who .was standing at the door. 

"I say, Moses, call the clergyman." 

Now this Pearl was no other than the seaman who milled the stroke-oas 
in the gig ; a very hsuidsome negro, and the man wno afterwards forked 
Whiffle out of tlie waters tall, powerful,, and muscuhu', and altogether 
one of the best men in the shipw Tnojrest of the boat's-crew, from his com* 
plerioBf had&stened the wilMquet of the <iergymim on him. 



158 wNf cmimwut'» isq. 

** Call the ekergymaii.*' ^ 

The saperseded interpreter, who wu etandine near, eeeiDg I took ne 
notice, immediately tradMed this literalij to the unEappy men. A mtmnor 
rose among them. 

<( due -« el padie ya I Somoa en Capillo entoncea — peeo tiempo, poco 
tiempoT' 

Tney had thon^t that, the clergyman having been aent for, the sentence 
waa immediately to be executed, but I undeceived them ; and, in ten 
minutes after they were condemned, they were marched off mder a heavy 
eacort of foot to the jaiL 

I must make a long story abort Two days aflerwarda, I waa ordered 
with the launch to Kmgston, early in the morning, to receive twenty-five of 
the pirates, who had been ordered for execution that morning at Gallowa 
Point It was a little past four in the morning when we arrived at the 
Wherry wharf, where they were aheady chiatiSed, with their hands {>in- 
ioned behind their backs, silent and aad, but all of them calm, and evincing 
no unmanly (ear of death. 

I don't know if other people have notioed it, but ttaa was one of several 
instances where I have seen forelgnerB — Frenchnaen, fUdians^ and Span- 
iards, for instance, meet' death, inevUtMe deaih^ with graater firmness than 
British soldiers or sailors. Let me explain. lit the nel^, or grapphng in 
mortal combat, on llie blood'^lippery quartep-deck of an enemy's vessel, a 
British soldier or sailor is the bravest of the brave. ^ No soldier or sailor of 
any other country, saving and excepting those damned Yankee^, can stand 
against him — they wouul be ntternr overpowered — their hearts would fail 
thenk— they would either be out down — thrust thibagh, or they would 
turn and flee. Yet those same men who have turned and fled, will meet 
death, but it must be as I said, (nemtablej Uftavoidahle deiiih, not only more 
firmly than their conquerers would do in their circumstances, but with an 
intrepidity — oh, do not call it indiflerence ! — altogether astonishing, fie 
it their rell^on, or their physical conformation, or what it may, all I have 
to do with, IS the fkct which I record as undeniable. Out of five*and-twenty 
individuals, in the present instance, not a sigh was heasd, nor a moan, nor 
a querulous word. They stepped lightly into the boats, and seated them- 
selves in silence. When told by the seamen to make room, or to shift so 
as not to be in the way of the oars, they did so with alacrity, and almost 
with an air of civility, although they knew that wHhrn half an hour their 
earthly career must close for ever. 

The young Spaniard who had stood forw^ard so conspicuously on the trial, 
was in my boat ; in stepping in, he accidentally trod on my foot in passing 
forward ; he turned ana apmogized, with much natural politeness — *< he 
hoped he had not hurt me ?" 

1 answered kindly, 1 presume — who could have done so harshly ? This 
imboldened him apparently, for he stopped, and asked leave to sit by me. 
I consented, while an incomprehensible feelinjg crept over me ; and when 
once f had time to recollect myself, I shrunk from him, as a blood-stained 
brute, with whom even in his extremity it was unfitting for me to hold any 
intercourse. When ^e noticed my repugnance to remain near him, he 
addressed me hastily, as if afraid that I would destroy the opportunity he 
seemed to desire. 

"God did not always leave tne the slave of my passions,^ he said, in a 
low, deep, most musical voice. ** The day has been when I would have 
shrunk as you do -^ but time presses. Tou have a mother T* sM he — I 
assented — " and an only s^ter r' As it happened, he was ri^t here too. 
" And — and " — here he hesitated, and his voice shook and trembled with 
the most intense and heart-crushing emotion — "y una maa cara que ani' 
hosT^ — Mary j you can tell whether m this he did not also speak truth. I 



vMi cmauMMki umt IW 



adtnowledgdd there was another httng more dear to me than eH 
*'Then/' said he, '* take this chain fioaa my neck, and the cmcifiz, and a 
small miniature from my bosom ; but not yel — >not till I leave the boat — 
Yon will find an address dBzed to the string of the latten Your ooorM 
of service may lead yon to Si Jago— if not, a brother-offieer may *— '* His 
voice became inaudible ; his hot scalding tears dropped fast on my hand, 
and the ravisher, the murderer, the pirate^ wept as an innocent and help- 
less infant. ** You wUi deliver it Promise a dying man •— promise a great 
sinner." Bat it was momentary -— he quelled the passion with a fierce a!nd 
savage energy, as he said sternly, *' PromiH t prcmite /" I did so, and I 
fulfilled it 

The day broke. I took the jewels and miniature from his neek, as be 
led the way with the firm step of a hero in ascending the long gibbet The 
halters wwe adjusted, when ne stepped towards the side i was on, as hx 
as the rope would let him, << Dexa me verla — deza me verla, una ves 
mas!** I held up the miniature. He looked -« he glared intensely at it 
"Adios, Maria, seas feliz mi querida — feliz—felu— Maria — aoioe — 
adios — Maria — Mar " 

The rope severed thy name from his heart, sweet gizl ; but not until it 
ahM> severed his soul from his body, and sent him to his tremendous 
account — young in years, but old in wickedness— to answer at that tri- 
bunal, where we must all appear, to the Grod who made him, and whose 
gifts he had so feaifiiUy aoused, for thy broken heart and early death, 
among the other scarlet atrocities of his short but ill-spent life. 

The signal had been given — the lumbering flap of the long drop was 
heard, and five-and-twenty human beines were waving in the sea-breese 
in the agonies of death ! The other ei^teen suffered on the same spot the 
week fbuowing ; and for long after, thu fearful and bloody example struck^ 
tenor into the C uba fishermen. 

'^Strange now, that the majority — ahem — of my beauties and fiivourites 
Ammgh \ne have been called Mary. There is my own Mai^ — en peupa»' 
•ez, certainly — but deil mean her, for half a dozen lit Now, Tom Crin- 
gle, dont bother with your sentimentality, but get along, do — Well, 1 will 
g^t along — but have patience, you Hottentot Yeaus — yon Lord Nugent, 
T^nt So once more we make sail." 

Next morning, soon aller ^n-firs, I landed atthe Wheny wharf in PorU 
Royal. It was barely daylight, but, to my surprise I found my fiiend 
Psre^ne WhifBe seated on a Spanish cnair, close to the edge of die 
whai^ smoking a cigar. This piece of furniture is an aim^chair, strong 
fnuned with hard- wood, over whi^h, back and bottom,- a tanned hide is 
Btretcfaed, which, in a hot climate, forms a most luxurious seat, the badL 
tumbling out to an an^e of 45 degrees, while the skin yields to every 
movement, and does not harbour a nest of bitine ants, or a litter of scor- 
pions, or any other of the customary occupants of a cuslnon that has been 
in Jamaica for a year. 

He did not know me as I passed ; but his smsil glimmering red face 
instantly identified the worthy little old man to me. 

"Good morning, Mr. Whiffle — the t&p of the mornins to you, sir." 

** Hillo,*' responded Peregrine -«<< Tom, is it you? —how d'ye do, man 
— • how d'ye do ?" and he started to his feet, and almost embraced me. 

Now, I had never met die said Peregrine Whifile but twice in my life ; 
OBce at Mr. Fyall's and once during the few days I remained in Kinflston^ 
before I set out on my travels ; but he was a warm-hearted kimfiy old fel- 
low, and, from knowing all my friends there very intimately, he, as a mat- 
ter of course, became equally familiar vrith ine. 

" Why the diable came you not to see me, man ? Have been here for 



HO MM cmnifli«'i LtOn 



change cf ur, to Mcrnit, you know, tfter thai demon, the goat, had been 
BO perplexing me, ever nnce you came to anchor — the Fiiebrand, I mean 
— as for you, you have been mad one while, and pbilandecins with thoee 
iaconTenient white ladies the oth^. Toa*U cure ojf that, my boy — you*]} 
come to the original comforts of the countiy soon, no fear !" 

** Perhaps I ma^, perhaps not" 

" Oh, your couam Mary, Ifwgot — fine girl, Tom — may do for you at 
home yonder^" (all Creoles speak of En^and as home, although they may 
nerer have seen it ;) ** but she can't make pepper-pot, nor give a dish oif 
land*crabs as land-crabs should be given, nor see to the serving up of a 
ringtail pigeon, nor rub a oeef-steak to the rotting tarn with a bruised 
papaw, nor compose a medicated bath, nor, nor — ofa^ confound it, Tom, she 
will be, when you marry her, a cold, comfortless, motionless Creole icicle!'* 

I let him have his swing. "^ Never mind her then, never mind her, my 
dear sir ; but time presses, and I must be ofi^ I nuist indeed, so good mom- 
ins ; I wish you a £ood morning, sir." 

Ue started to his feet, and caug^ hold of me. <* Shan't go,. Tom; impos> 
sible — come along with me to my lodgings, and breakfast with me. Here^ 
Pilfer, Pilfer," to Ins black valet, "sive me my stic^ and maasu'i' the 
chair, and run home and order breakfast — cold salipiver*— our Jamaica 
salmon, you know, Tom — tea and coflfee— pickled mackereL oggs, and cold 
tongue— any thing that Mother Dineychopscan mve us; so bolt,^lfer, bolt!" 

I told him that before I came ashore I had beard the gig's crew piped 
away, and that I therefore expected, as Jonathan says, that the captain would 
be after me immediately ; so that I wished at all events to get away firom 
where we were, as I had no desire to be caught gossiping about when my 
superior might be expected to pass. 

**True, ^y, true" — as he shaokled himself to me, and we be^m to 
crawl along towards the wharf-gate leading into the town. CaptainTTran- 
som by tnis time had landed, and came up with us. 

" Ah, Transom," sakl Whiffle, ** g^ad to see you. I say, why w<m*t you 
allow Mr. Cringle here to go over to Spanish Town with me for a couple 
of days, eh ?" 

" Why, I don't remember that Mr, Cringle has ever asked leave." 

" Indeed, sir, I neither did ask leave, nor have I thought of doing so^'* said L 

<*But I do for you," chimed in my friend Whiffle. ^ Come, Captain, give 
him leave, just tor two days, that's a prime chap. Why, Tom, you see 
you have got it, so off with you and come to me with your kit as soon as 
possible, I will hobble on and make the coffee and chocolate ; and, Cap- 
tain Transom, come along and breakfast with mO too. No refasal, I requite 
society. Nearly drowned yesterday, do you know that ? On Uiis same 
cursed wharf too —just here. I was lool^g down at the small fis];^ play- 
ing about the piles, precisely in this position ; one of them was as bri^ la 
the scales as a gold firii in my old grandmothei^s glass globe, and I had to 
crane over the ledge in this fashion," suiting the action to the word, <* when 
away I went — " 

And, to our unutterable surprise, sjdash went Peregrine Whiffle, Esquire, 
for the eecwid tirMf and there he was shouting, and puffing, and splashing in 
the water. We were both so convulsed with laughter that I believe he 
would have been drowned for us ; but the boat-keeper of the gig, the strong 
athletic negro before mentioned, promptly jumpea on the wharf with his 
boat^iook, and caught the dapper little old beau by the waistband of his 
breeches, swaying him up, frightened enough, with his little coatskitts flut- 
tering in the breeze, and no wonder, but not much the worse for it alL 

^Diuhlt porte Pamaut^ whispered Captain Transom. 

« Swallow^ a Scotch pint <» salt water to a certainty — run, Pilfer, bring 

• JConu — lift 



ffdM csnvacB'i iiO«. 161 

vie some bmndy— gout will be into my rtomadi, sure as (kte — feel him po# 
— run, Pilfer, run, or gout will beat you — a dead heat that will be !" And 
he keckled at his small joke very complacently. 

We had him carried by our people to his lodgings, where, after sfaifting 
and brandying to some tune, he took his place at the breakfast table, and 
did the honours with his usual amenity and warmheartedness. 

After breakfast Peregrine remembered, what the sly rogve had never for- 
eetten I suspect, that he was engaged to dine with hisiriend Mr. Pepperpot 
Wagtail, in Kingston. * 

" But it don*t signify, Wagtail will be delighted to tee you, Tom -^hos- 
mtable fellow, Wagtail — and, now I recollect m3rBelf, Fyidl and Aaion 
Bang are^ be there ; dang it, were it not for the gout, we should have a 
night on't !*» 

After breakfast, we started in a canoe for Kingston, touching at t^e Fire^ 
brand for my kit 

Moses Yerk, the unpoetical first lieutenant, was standing wdl forward 
OD the quarter-deck as I passed over the side to get into the canoe, with the 
gun-room steward following me, carrying my kit under his arm. 

*^ I say, Tom, good for you, one lark after another." 

** Don't like that fellow," quoth Whiffle ; *< he is quarrelsome in hia drink 
fw a thousand ; I know it by the cut of his jib." 

He had better have held his tongue, honest man ; for as he looked up 
broad in York's face, who was leaning over the hammocks, the scupper 
immediately overhead, thi^u^h whose mstrumentality I never knew, was 
euddenly cleared, and a rusn of dirty water, that had been lodged there 
since the decks had been washed down at da^-dawn, splashed slapdash 
ever his head and shoidder^ andintoliis month, so ast o set the dear little man 
a coughing so violently that I tiiought he would have been throttled. Before 
he hA recovered sufficiently to find his tongue, we had i>ulled fifty yards 
from the ship, and a Ktttle farther on wi» overtook the captain, who had pre- 
ceded us in the cutter, into which we transhipped ourselves. But Whiffle 
never could acquit Yerk of having been, directly or indirectly, the cli.use of 
his suffering from the impure shower. 

This day was the first of the Negro Cftmival 'of Christmas Holydays, 
and at the distance of two miles from Kingston the sound of the negro 
drums and horns, the barbarous music and yelling of the different African 
tribes, and the more mellow singing of the Set dirls, came off* upon the 
breeze loud and strong. • 

When we got nearer, the wharfs and different streets, as we successively 
opened them, were crowded with blackamoors; men, women, and children, 
dancing and singing ahd shoutins, and all rigged out in their best When 
we landed on me agents' whan we were immedii 



gro 
€ai 



.- agents' wharf we were immediately surrounded by a 

up of these merry-makers^ which happened to be the Butchers' Jcim 
anoe party, and a curious exhibition it unquestionably was. The prominent 
character was, as usual, the John Canoe or Jack Pudding. He was a light, 
active, clean-made young Creole negro, without shoes or. stockings ; he 
Wore a pair of light iean small-clothes, all too wide, but confined at the 
l^nees, below and above, by bands of red tape, after the manner that 
Malvolio would have called cross-gartering. He wore a splendid blue 
velvet waistcoat, with old-fashioned flaps coming down over nis hips, and 
covered with tarnished embroidery. His shirt was absent on leave I sup. 
pose, but at the wrists of his coat he had tin or white iron frills, with loose 
i^ieces attached, which tinkled as he moved, and set off the dingy paws 
that were stuck throuf;h these strange manacles, like black wax tapers in 
nlver candlesticks. Bis coat was an old blue artillery uniform one, with 
It small bell hung to the extreme points of the swallow-tailed skirts, and 
three tarnished epaulets ; one on each shoulder, and, O ye imnioital gods ! 



(fmfpni for t* sheep^s tail. He had an enormous cocked hat opk wlQSni 
was appended in front a white falseface or mask, of a most i^Siodiilbil 
ttpretsimi, while, Jahus-like, there was another face behind, «if j^moBt 
qmzzical deaohption, a sort of living antithesis, both being ^mi^ed aad 
overtopped with one coarae wig, made of the hair of bullocks* taiU, on 
which the ehof^ was strapped down with a broad band of gold lace. 

Ho dtipped 'up to us with a white wand in one hand and a dirty handk^iv 
chief in the other, and with sundry mappings and mowings, first wiping Mr 
•hoes with hie mondbtr, then my face, (murder, what a flavour of salt fi^ 
and onions it bad ! ) he made a smart enough mmuette, and then sprung «b 
the back of a nondesoiipt animal* that now aavanced capering and jump- 
ing about after the most grotes()ue fashion that can be imaging* Thm was 
the signal for the music to beajin. The performers were two gigantic ipen, 
dressed in calf-skins entire, head, four legs, and tail. The skin ca the 
head waa made to fit like a hood, thA two ^ora-feet hung dangling down in 
front, one over each shoulder, while the other two legs, or hind feet, and the 
tail, trailed behind on the ground ; deuce another article had they on in 
the shape of^ clothing except a handkercliief, of some. flaming pattern, tied 
mmid tne waist. There were also two flute-players in sheep^skins, 1oq]l- 
ing still raore outlandish from the horns on the animals' heads being prtt> 
served ; and three stout fellows, who were dressed in the common white 
frock and trousers, who kept sounding on bullocks' horns. These formed 
the band as it were, and mignt be considered John's immediate tail of follow- 
ing ; but he was sdsb accompanied by about fifty of the hutched negroes^ 
all neatly dressed'-- Uae .j&cKets, white shirts, and Osnaburs trousers, 
with their steels and knife-cases by their sides, as brigjit as Turkish yata- 
ghans, and they all wore clean blue and white striped aprons, I coul^ see 
and tell what thty were ; but (he thing John Canoe had perched himsdt 
upon I could make nothing of. At length I began to comprehend the 
device. 

The Mftgnvu ApoUo of the party, the poet and chief musician, the nonde- 
script already mentioned, was no less tlian the boatswain of the butcher 
gang, answering to tbe*diiver in an agricultural one. He was clothed in 
an entire buHoek's- hide, horns, tail, and the other particulars, the whole of 
the skull being retained, and the effect of the voice growling through the 
jaws of the beast was most startling. His le^ were enveloped in tlie skin 
of the hind legs, while the arms were cased m that of the tore, the hands 
protruding a uttle above the boofs, and, as be walked reared up on his hind 
legs, he used, in order to support the load of the John ^anoe who had 
perched on faieahoulders, like a monkev on a dancing bear, a strong stick, 
or sprit, with a crutch top to it, which he leaned nis breast on every now 
and then. 

Afler ihe creature, which I will call the Device for shortness, bad capered 
with its extra load, as if it had been a feather, for a minute or two, it came 
to a stand-still, and sticking the end of th^ sprit into the ground, and tuck- 
ing the erutfh of it under its chin, it motionea to one of the attendants, who 
thereupon handed, of all things in the worid, a fiddle to the ox» He then 
flhook off the John Canoe, who began to caper about as before, while the 
Device set up a deuced good pipe, and sung and played, barbarously enough, 
I will admit, to the tone of Guinea Corn, the following ditty ; — 

** Massa Boccra lob for see 
Bullock caper like monkea— » 
Dance, and ^ump, and poke him toe, 
Like one homane person — jcnt so." 

■d hirrapon the tail of tbd beast, aome fifty strong, mwie men, Jcfm 



mi ca^ma^a am. 1M 

CteiiQ6a»idaU,besantominpageabout,a8iftheyh»d been poMOBBedby 
ft dtt^ whose name was Legion : — 

"But Massa Buccra have white lore, ^ 

Qcfi and silken like one dore. 
To brown girl— hun baiely shivil — 
To black ?irl — oh, Lord, de Devil !»» 

Then a ta^mendonft gtdlopading,.in thd which Tailtackle wai nearlyeap. 
nzed over the wharf. He looked quietly over the edge of it. 

<< Boat-keeper, hand me ap that switch of a stretcher." (Friend, if thou 
be^st not naotical, tbou knowest what a raehfint something of the stouteity 
is.) 

The boy did so, and Tailtackle, after -moisteninfi well bis dexter claW 
with tobacco jtuce, sensed the stick with his left by toe middle, and balan- 
cing it fbr a second or two, he began to fasten the end of it into his rifiht fist, 
as if he had been screwing a bolt into a socket Having satisfied himself 
that his grip was secure, he let go the hold with his left hand, and crossed 
his arms on his breast, with the weapon projecting over his left shoulder, 
hke the drone of a bagpipe. 

The Detiee continued ms chant, giving the seaman a wide berths how- 
ever:— 

*< Bat wbet'him onoe two tree year here, 
Him tink white lady wery great boder, 
De cok>ured peoples, never fear, 
Ah, him lob him de merest nor any oder»" 

Then another tomblification of the whole party. 

" But top*— one time bad fever oatch hin^i. 
Ooloared peoples kindly watch him— 
In siek room, nnrse voice like music — * 
From him hand taste sweet de physic.'* 

Another trampoline. 

" So alway come — in two tree year, 
And so wid you, massa — never fear 
Brown girl for cook — for wife — for nurse : 
Buccra lady — poo — no wort a curse." 

** Get away, you scandalous scoundrel," cried I ; *< away with you^ mt I" 

Here the morrice-dancers began to circle round old Tailtackle, keeping 
him on the move|Npinning round tike a weathercock in a whirlwind, while 
they shouted, *< Oh, massa, one maeanmi* if yon please." To get quit of 
their importunity. Captain Tmnsom gave them one. " Ah, good massa, 
tank }rou, sweet massa !" And away danced John Canoe and his tail, 
careering up. the street 

In the same way all the other crafts and trades had their Gnmbi-men, 
Hon»*blowers, John Canoes, and Nondescript The Gardeners came 
nearest of any Ihi^g I had keen before to the May>day boys in London, 
with this advanti^e, that their Jack4n-the-Green was incomparably 
more beautiful, from the superior bloom of the larger flowen used in 
composing it. 

The very Wbrkhouse people, whose province it is- to guard the negro 
culprits who may be committCMd to it, and to inflict puniuiment on them 
when required} had their John Canoe and Device ; and their prime jest 
seemed to be every now and then to throw the fellow down who enacted 
the latter at the comer of a street, and to administer a sound flogging to 
him. The John Canoe, who was the workhouse driver, was dressed up in 

* A quarter dollar. 

45—— 6 



164 voM cftiiraiiB's loq* 

a lawyer's eaflt-offgbwn and bands, black silk bxeeehes, no tstoddngs nof 
shoes, but with sanaals of bullock's hide strapped on his great splay feet^a 
small cocked hat on his hesd, to which were appended a large cauliflower 
wig, and the- usual white false face, bearing ayery laughable resemblance 
to Chief Justice S , with whom I happened to be personally acquainted. 

The whole party which accompanied these two worthies, nrasicians and 
all, were dressed out so as to give a tolerable resemblance of the Bar broke 
loose, and they were alt pretty considerably well drunk. As #e passed 
along, the Device was once more laid down, and we oonld notice a shield 
of tough hide strapped over the fellow's stem frame, so as to save th^ ladies 
of the cat, which John Canoe was administering with all his force, while 
the Device wallopped about and yelled, as if he had been receiving the 
punishment on his naked flesh. Presently, as he rolled oyer and over in 
the sand, bellowing to the life, I noticed the leather shield slip upwards to 
the small of his back, leaving the lower story uncovered in reality ; but the 
driver and his tail were too drunk to observe this, and the former continued 
to lay on and laugh, while one of his people stood by in all the gravity ef 
(bunkenness, counting, as a first lieutenant does, when a poor fellow is 
polishing at the gangway, — ** Twenty — twenty-one — twenty-two ■ — » 
and so on, white the patient roared yon, an it were any thing but a nightin- 
gale. At length he broke away from the men who held him, afler rec^f- 
mg a most sufficient flogging, to revenge whidh he immediately fastened 
on the John Canoe, wrenched his cat from him, and employed it so scientifi- 
cally on him and his followers, giving them passing taps on the shins now 
and then with the handle, by way of spice to the dose, tnat the whole crew 
pulled foot as if Old Nick had held them in chase. 

The very children, urchins of five and six years old, had their Lilliputian 
John Canoes and Devices* -But the beautiful part of the exhibition was the 
Set Girls. They danced along the streets, in bands of from fifteen to thirty. 
There were brown sets, and black sets, and sets of all the intermediate 
gradations of colour. Each set was dressed pin for pin alike, and carried 
umbrellas or parasols of the same colour and size, held over their nica 
showy, well put on toques, or Madras handkerchiefs, all of the same pat- 
tern, tied round their heads, firesh out of the fold, and in the most luxurious 
attitudes. They sang as they swam along the streets, and I had never 
seen more beautiful creatures than there were among the brown sets — 
clear olive complexions, and fine faces, elegant carriages, splendid figures, 
— fuH, plump, and magnificent. 

Most of the Sets were as much of *a size as Lord 's eigMeen dauglv 

ters, sailing down Recent-street, like a charity school of a Sunday, led by a 
rum-looking old beadle — others again had lar^ l^oman matron-loj^mg 
women in the leading files, the figurantes in their tails becoming slighter 
and smaller, as they tapered away, until they ended in leetie pieaninny no 
bigger as my tumb, but always preserving the uniformity of dress, and colour 
orme umbrella or parasol. Sometimes the breeze, on opening a comer, 
would strike the stemmost of a set composed in this manner of small fry, 
and stagger the little tbings, getting beneath their tiny umbrellas, and fairly 
blowing them out of the line, and raffling their ribbons and finery, as if they 
had been tnlips bending and shaking their leaves before it. But ibe cdrnvn 
were never blended in the same set — no blackie ever interloped with the 
browns, nor did the browns in any case mix with the sables — always 
keeping in mind — black vaoman — brown lady, 

But,as if tiie whole city had been tom-fooling, a loiAl burst of military music 
was now heard, ai^ the north end of the street we were ascending, which 
leads out of the Place d'^^rmes or parade, that occupies the centre of the 
town, was filled with a cloud of dust, that rose as high as the house-tops, 
through which the head of a column of troops sparkled^ swords and bayo- 



TOM CKIVOLC'S I<00» 165 

•etSy and gaj iinifoniui glancing in the sun. This was the Kinsston regi- 
ment marching down to the court-house in the lower part of the town, to 
mount the Christmas guards, which is always carefully attended to, in case 
any of the John Canoes should take a small fancy to burn or pillage the 
town, or to rise and cut the throats of their roasters, or any little innocent 
recreation of the kind, out of compliment to Dr. Lushington, or Messrs. 
Macauley and Babington. 

First cfiune a tolerably good band, a little toodrummy,but still not amiss 
•—well dressed, only the performers being of all colours, from white, down 

I to jet-black, haid a curious hodge-podge or piebald appearance. Then 
came a dozen mounted officers at the very least — colonels-in-chief, and 
icolonels, and lieutenant-colonels, and majors — all very fine, and very bad' 
horsemen. Then the grenadier company, composed of white clerks of the 
place, very fine-loeking young men indeed — anoth^ white company fol- 
lowed, not quite so smait -looking — then came a century of the children of 
Israel, not over military in appearance — the days of Joshua, the son of 
Nan, had passed away, the glory had long departed from their house, — a 
phalanx or light browns succeeded, then a company of dark browns, or mu- 
lattoes ; the regular half-and-half in this, as well as in grog, is the best 
mixture after aU — then quashie himself, or a company of &ee blacks, who, 
with the browns, seemed the best soldiers of the set, excepting the flanj^ 
companies — and alter blaekie Uie battalion again gradually whitened 
away, until it ended in a very fine light company of buccras, smart young 
fellows as need be — all the officers were white, and all the soldiers, what- 
ever their caste or colour, free of cotirse. Another battalion succeeded, com- 
posed in the same way, and really I was agreeably surprised to find the 
mdivenous force of the colony so efficient. 1 had never seen anything more 
Boldier-Uke among ear volunteers at home. Presently a halt was called, 
and a mounted officer, evidently desirous of showing off, gallopped up to 
where we were standing, and began to swear at the drivers or a wagon, 
with a lonv team of sixteen bullocks, who had placed their vehicle, whether 
intentionally or not 1 could not tell, directly across the street, where being 
met by another wagon of the same kind, coming through the opposite lane, 
aiegiAar jam had taken plaee, as they had contrived, being redolent of new 
ram, to lock their wheels, and twist their lines of bullocks together, in much 
admired confusion. 

"Outof theway, sir, out of the way, you black rascals— don't you see 
the regiment cominv ?»» 

The men spanked their long whips, and shouted to the steers by name — 
"Back, back-^Ceesar — Antony — Crab, back, sir, back;" and they 
whistled iQud and long, but Cesar and the rest only became more and more 
involved. 

** Order arms,*' roared another officer, fairly beaten by the bullocks and 
wagons — «« Stand at ease." 

On this last si^al, a whole cloud of spruce-beer sellers started fiercely 
from under the piazzas. 

\*An insurrection of the slave population, mayhap," — thought I, but 
meir object was a very peaceable one, for presently, I verily believe, every 
man and officer in the regiment, had a tumbler of this, to me, most delicious 
of all beverages at his head — th$ drawing of the corks was more like 
Btreet-firing tnan anything else — a regular feu de joie. In the mean time, 
a council of war seemed to be holden by the mounted officers, as to how the 
obstacle in front was to be overcome ; but at this moment confusion became 
worse confounded, by the approach of what I concluded to be the white 
''Win's John Canoe party, mounted by way of pre-eminence — First came 
^trarapeter, John Canoe with a hUuk face, which was all in rule, as his 
•lack counterparts wore \BhU^ ones ; but his Device, a curious little old 



166 TOM cringle's liOG. 

man, dressed in a sort of blue nnifonn, and moonted on the skeleton, or 
fifaost, of a gi^-horae, I could make notfiing of. It carried a drawn swosd 
m its hand, with which it made various flourishes, at each one of which I 
trembled for its Rosinante's ears. The Device was followed by about "fifty 
other odd-looking creatures all on horseback ; but they had no more uat 
than so many pairs of tongs, which in truth they greatly resembled, and 
made no show, and less fun. So we were wishing them out of the way, 
when some one whispered that the Kingston Light Horse mustered strong 
this morning. I found afterwards that every man who kept a good horse, or 
could ride, invariably served in the foot — all free persons must join some 
corps or other ; so that the troopy as it was called, was composed exclusively 
of tnose who could not ride, and who kept no saddle-liorses. 

The line was now formed, and after a variety of cumbrous manoBurres out 
of Dundas, sixteen at the least, the regiment was countermarched, and filed 
along another street, where they gave three cheers, in honour of their having 
had a drink of spruce, and of having circumvented the bullocks and wag- 
ons. A little farther on we encountered four beautiful nine-pounder fielo- 
pieces, each lumbering alon^ drawn by half a dozen mules, and accompa- 
nied by three or four negroes, but with no escort whatsoever. 
" I say, Cluashie, where are the bombardiers, the artillerymen?" 

" Oh, massa, dem all gone to drink pruce " 

'< What, more spruce ! — spruce — ^ nothing but spruce !*> quoth 1. 
" Oh, yes, massa — after dem drink pruce done, aem all go to him break- 
fast, massa — left we for take de gun to de barrack -~ beg aae fetyaeniH/iff 
massa,*' as the price of the information, I suppose. 
*' Are the guns loaded ?" said I. 

" Me no sabe, massa — top, I shall see.*' And the fellow to whom I ad- 
dressed myself stepped forward, and began to squint into the muzzle of <me 
of the field-pieces, slewing his head from side to side, witlt absurd gravity, 
like a magpie peeping into a marrow-bone. " Him most beload — no day- 
light come troo ae touch-hole — ^take care — make me try hinu" And 
without more adobe shook out the red embers from his pipe right on the 
touch-hole of the gun, when the fragment of a broken tube spun up in a 
small jet of flame, that made me start and jump back. 
** How dare you, you scoundrel ?" said the captain. 
*' Eigh, massa, you no haz me to see if him be load — so I was try see. 
Indeed, I tink him is load after all yet." 

He stepped forward, and entered his rammer into the cannon, after wi 
unavailing attempt to blow with his blubber-lips through the touch-hole^ 

Noticing that it did not produce the ringing sound it would have done in 
an empty gun, but went home with a soft tAud, I sung out, <* Stand clear, 
sir. By Jupiter, the gun is loaded." 
The ne^o continued to bash at it with all his might 
Meanwhile, the fellow who was driving the mules attaohed to tho field- 
piece, turned his head, and saw what was ^ing on. In e trice he snatched 
up another rammer, and, without any warning, came crack over the fellow'^ 
cranium to whom we had been speaking, as lutrd as he could draw, making 
the histrument quiver a^in. 

** Dem you, ye, ye Jencho — ah, so you baahmj brokefast — oh ? — You 
no see me tick him into tho gUi bofore we yoke de mule^ dem, eh? — You 
tief,you, eh?" 

*< No !" roared the other — *' you Walkandnyam, yo« hab no broke&st, 
you Hard — at least I never see him." 
•* Dem lie dat !»' replied Walkandnyam — « Jook in de gun." 
Jericho peered into it again. 

« Dere, you son of a »* (I shan't say what) — « dere, I see de red 

flannin wadding over de cartridge — Your biokefast ! — TOO he dem !** 



TOM c&nrGts's log. 167 

And he made at him as if he would have eaten him alive. 

" You be dem yoiiehef r* shrieked Walkandnyam — « and de red wad- 
ding be dem !" as betook a screw and hooked out, not a cartridge certainly, 
but his own night-cap, full of yams and salt fish, smashed into a paste by 
Jericho's rammer. 

in the frenzy of his rage, he dashed this into his opponent's face, and 
the^ both stripped in a second. Separating several yards, they levelled 
their heads like two telescopes on stands, and ran butt at each other like 
ram-goats, and quite as odoriferous, making the welkin ring again as their 
flint-nard skulls cracked together. Finding each other invulnerable in this 
direction, they closed, and be^n scrambling and biting and kicking, and 
tumbling over and over in the sand ; while the skipper and I stood by 
cheering them on, and nearly suffocated with laughter. They never once 
struck with their closed fists I noticed ; so they were not much hurt It 
¥ras great cry and little wool ; and at length they got tired, and hauled off 
by mutual consent, finishing oif as usual with an appeal to u{i — " beg one 
feepenny, massa I" 

At six o'clock we drove to Mr. Pepperpot Wagtail's. The party was a 
bachelor's one, and, when we walked up the front steps, there was our host 
in person, standing to receive us at the door ; while, on each side of him, 
there were five or six of his visiters, all sitting with their legs cocked up, 
their feet resting on a sort of surbase, above which the jalousies, or mov- 
able blinds of the piazza, were fixed. 

I was introduced to the whole party serioHm — and as each of the cock- 
legs dropped his trams, he started up, caught hold of my hand, and wrung 
it as if I had been bis dearest and oldest friend. 

Were I to designate Jamaica as a community, I would call it a hand- 
shaking people. I have often laughed heartily upon seeing two cronies 
meeting m the -vtreets of Kingston after a temporary separation ; when 
about pistol-shot asunder, both would begin to ta^and rug at the right-hand 
glove, but it is frequently a mighty serious affair in that nissing hot climate 
to* get the gauntlet off; they approach, — one a smart urbane little man, 
who would notdisgrace St James's-street, being more kiln-dried and less 
moist in his corporeals than his country friend, has contrived to extract his 
paw, and holds it out in act to shake : 

" Ah ! how do you do, Ratoon ?" quoth the Kingston man. 

" Gtuite well. Shingles," rejoins the gloved, a stout red-faced sudoriferous 
yam- fed planter, dressed in blue- white jean trousers and waistcoat, with long 
Hessian boots drawn up to his knee over the former, and a span-new 
square-skirted .blue coatee, with lots of clear brass buttons : a broad- 
brimmed black silk hat, worn white at the edgo of the crown — wearing a 
very small neckcloth, above which shoots up an enormous shirt collar, the 
peaks of which might serve for winkers to a startins horse, and carrying a 
' iarse whip in his hand — " Cluite well, my dear fellow," while he persists 
in dragging at it — the other homo all the while standing in the absurd posi- 
tion of a finger-post — at length off comes the glove — piecemeal pernaps 
— a finger first, tor instance — then a thumb — r.atlength they tackle to, and 
shake each other like the very devil — not a sober pump-handle shake, but 
a regular jiggery jiggery, ^ if they were trying to dislocate each other's 
arms — and, confound them, even then they don't let go — they cling like 
sucker fish, and talk and wallop about, and throw themselves back and 
laugh, and then another jiggery, jiggery. 

On horseback, this custom is conspicuously ridiculous — I have neariy 
gone into fits at beholding two men careering along the road at a hand 
gallop — each on a goodish horse, with his negro boy astern of him on a 
mule, in clean frock and trousers, and smart glazed hat with broad gold 
l)and, with maasa's umbrella in. a leathern case slun^ across his shoul&ra^ 

5* 



168 TOM CRuraiiX's lo«. 

and his portmaoteau behind him od a mail pillion covered witii snow-white 
sheep's fleece — suddenly they would pull up on recognizing each other, 
when tucking their whips under their arms, or crossing them m their teeth, 
it may be — uiey would commence the rugging and nving Cfteration. In 
this case — Shingle's bit of blood swerves, we may assume — RaAoon rides 
at him -p- Shingle fairly turns tail, and starts eut at full speed, Ratoon thun- 
deling in his rear, with stretched-out arm ; and it does happen, I am assur- 
ed, that the hot pursuit often continues for a mile, before the desired clapper- 
claw is obtained. But when two lusty planters meet on horseback, tnen 
indeed, Greek meets Qreek. They begin the interview by shouting to eadi 
other, while fifty yards ofi| pulling away at the gloves all the while*— *' How 
are you, Canetop 7 — glad to see you, Canetop. How do you do, I hope T* 
— **How are you, Yamfu, my dear fellow?'' their horses fretting and 
jumping all the time — and if the Jack Spaniards or gadflies be rife, they 
nave, even when denuded for the shake, to spur at each other, more like a 
Knight Templar and a Saracen charging in mortal combat, than two men 
merely struggling to be civil ; and after aU they have often to get their bbudL 
servants alongside to hold their horses, for shake they must, were they to 
break their necks in the attempt Why, they won't shake hands with their 
gloves on, I am sure I can't tell. It would be much cooler and nicer — lots 
of Scotchmen in the community too. 

This hand-shakine, however, was followed by an invitation to dinner from 
each individual in the company. I looked at Captain Transom, as much 
as to say, *'Can thev mean us to take them at their word ?" Ue nodded. 

'* We are sorry, that being under orders to go to sea on Sunday mominfi 
neither Mr. Cringle nor myself can have the p&asure of accepting such kind 
invitations." 

" Well, when you come back you know —one day you must give me." 

^ And 1 won^t be denied," quoth a second. 

'* Liberty Hall, you know, so to me you must come, no ceremony," sud 
a third — and so on. ^^ 

At length, no less a man drove up to the door than Judge . When 

he drew up, his servant, who w€is sitting behind on a small projection of 
the ketureen, came round and took a parcel out of the gi^, closely wrapped 
in a blanket — ** Bring that carefully in, Leonidas," said the jad^e, who 
now stumped up stairs with a small saw in his hand. He received the 
parcel, and, laymg it down carefully in a corner, he placed the saw on it, 
and then came up and shook hands with Wagtail, ana made his bow very 
gracefully. 

" What — cantyou do without your ice and sour claret yet ?" said Wag- 
tail. 

*' Never mind, never mind," said the judge ; and here dinner being an- 
nounced, we all adjourned to the dining room, where a very splendid enter- 
tainment was set out, to which we set to, and in the end, as it will appear^ 
we did the utmost justice to it. 

The wines were most exquisite. Madeira, for instance, n^er can bo 
•drank in perfection anywhere out of the Tropics. You may have the wine 
as good at home, although I doubt it, but then you have not the cltm$kte to 
drink it in — I would say the same of most of the delicate French wines — 
that is, those that will stand the voyage — Burgundy of course not included; 
but never mind, let us get along. 

All the decanters were covered with cotton bags, kept wet with saltpete 
and water, so that the evaporation carried on powerfully by the stream of 
air that flowed across the room, through the open doors and windows, made 
the fluids quite as cool as was desirable to worthies sitting luxuriating with 
the thermometer at 80 or thereby ; yet, from the free current, I was m no 
imy made aware of this degree of heat by any oppressive sensation ; and 



¥0M CAlKftLE^^ L0G. 169 

f fooftd in the West Indies as well as in the Blast, althongfarthe wind in the 
'latter is more dry and parching, that a current of heated air, if it be moder- 
atelj dry, even with the thermometer at 95 in the shade, is really not so 
enervating or oppressive as I hate fotind it in the stagnating atmosphere on 
the sunny side of Pall Mall, with the mercury barely at 75. A cig-go of 
ice had a little befote this arrived at Kingston, and at nrst all the inhabit- 
ants who could afibrd it iced eveirythtnj^ wine, water, cold meats, fruits, 
and the Lord knows what all, tea, I believe, among other things, (by the 
way, I have tried this, and it is a luxury of itslLind ;) but the regular old 
stagers, who knew Virhat was what, and had a regard for their mteriors, 
soon began to eschew the ice in every way, saving and excepting to cool 
the wdter thej washed their thin faces and hands in ; to we we had no ice, 
nor did we miss it ; but the judge had a plateful of chips on the table before 
him, one of which he every now and then popped into his long thin bell- 
glass of claret, diluting it, I should have thought, in rather a heathenish 
manner; bat rCimporiej he worked away, sawing off pieces now and then 
from the lar^ lump in the blanket, (to save the tear and wear attending a 
fracture,) which was handed to him by his servant, so that by eleven o'clock 
at ni^t, allowing for the water, he must have concealed his three bottles of 
pure claret, besides garnishing with a lot of white wines. In fine, we all 
carried on astonishingly, some good singing was given, a practical joke 
Was tried on now and then by Fyall, and we continued mighty happy. As 
to the singing part of it, — the landlord, with a bad voice, and worse ear, 
opened the rorytoryt by volunteering a very eztraordinaiy squeak ; fortu- 
iMtel^ it was not very long, but it gave him a plea to screw a song out of 
his nght-hand neighbour, who in turn acquired the same right of compell- 
ing the person next to him to make a foot of himself; at last it came to 
Transom, who, by-the-by, sang exceedingly wdl, bat he had more wine 
than usi\al, and essayed the coquet a bit. 
" Bring the wet night-capl*' quoth our host. 

<*Oh, is it that you are at?" said Transom, and he sung as required ; 
but it was all pearls before swine, I fear. 

At last we stuck fast at FyalL Music ! there was not one particle in his 

whole composition ; so the wet nightcap already impended over him, when 

I suns; out, "Let him tell a story, Mr. Wagtail ! Let him tell a story I" 

" Thank you, Tom,'* said Pvall ; " I owe you a good turn for that, my Doy.'» 

"PyidPs story.— Mr. Fyall's story!" resounded on all hands. Pyall, 

^ad to escape the song and wet nightcap, instantly began. 

" Why, my friends, you all know Isaac Grimm, the Jew snufl^merchant 
and cigar-maker, in Harbour-street. Well, Isaac had a brother, Ezekiel 
by name, who carried on business in Cura^oa ; you may have heard of 
b^m too. Ezekiel was often down here for the purpose of laying in pxo- 
Tisions, and purchasif ^ dry goods. You all know that?" 

** Certainly !" shouted both Captain Transom and myself in a breath, 
although we had nrver heard of nim before. 

" Hah, I knew i'. ! — Well then Ezekiel was very rich ; he came down 
in August last, in the Pickle schooner, and, as bad luck would have it, he 
feU iidc of the fe/er. — * Isaac,' quoth Ezekiel, *I am wery sheek ; I tink 
1 shall tie' — * Hope note, dear proder ; you hab no vive, nor shildir ; pity 
JJu should tie, Tjzekiel. Ave you make your vill, Ezekiel ?' — * Yesh ; de 
XiU is maka I leavish every ting to you, Isaac, on von condition, dat you 
Bind my pody to be bury in Curacoa. I love dat place ; twenty years since 
I left de Minories : all dat time I cheat dere, and tell lie dere, and lif dere 
happily. Oh, you most sent my pody for its puryment to Cara9oa !» — * I 
"Will do dat, mine proder.' -- * Den 1 depait in peace, dear Isaac ; and 
the Israelite was as good as his word for onee. He did die. Isaac, aceord- 
ttg to his proraise, applied to the captains of several schooners ; nono 



170 TOM CftlKOr^'s LOO. 

of them woul4 take the dead body. < What shall I do ?* tfaou^t Isaac, * de 
monisD mosh not be loss/ So he straightway had Ezekiel ((or even a Jew 
won't keep long in that climate) cut up and packed with pickle into two 
barrels, marked, < Prime meds pork, Leicester, M'Cali and Ca, Cork.' 
He then shipped the same in the Fan Fan, taking bills of lading in accord- 
ance with the brand, deliverable to Mordecai Levi of Cura^oa, to whoof 
he sent the requisite instructions. The vessel sailed — ofi* St. Domingo 
she carried away a mast — tried to fetch Carthagena under a jury-spar 
•—fell to leeward, and finally brought up at Honduras. 

" Three months after, Isaac encountered the master of the schooner i^ 
the streets of Kingston. ' Ah, mine goot captain — how is you — you 
lookish tin — ave you been sheek ?'-^ ' No, moses — I am well enou^ 
thank you — poor a bit, but sound in health, thank God. You have heard 
of my having carried away the mainmast, and, after kicking about fifteen 
days on short allowance, liaving been obliged to bear up for Honduras? 
— ' I know noting of all dat,' said Isaac ; < sorry for it, captain — very sad 
inteed.' — 'Sad — you mav say that, Moses. But I avi honest although 
poor, and here is your bill of lading for your two barrels of provisions ; 
" Prime mess," U says — damned tough, sav I — Howsomdever,' pulling 
out his purse, * the present value on Bogle, Jopp, and Co.'s wharf is 5^ 6«. 
8d. the barrel ; so there are two doubloons, Moses, and now discharge the 
account on the back of the bill of lading, will you ?' — * Yy should I take 
payment, captain? ifde' (pork stuck in his throat like <amen' in Mae- 
beth's,) * if ae barrel ish lost, it can't be help — de act of Qod, you know.' 
— ' I am an honest man, Isaac,' continued the captain, ' although a popr 
one, and I must tell the truth — we carried on with our own as long a^ it 
lasted, at length we had to break bulk, and your two barrels being nearest 
the hatchway, why wo ate them first, that's all. Lord, what has come 
over you ?' — Isaac grew pale as a corpse. — * Oh, mine Got — mine poor 
proder, dat you ever was live to tie in Jamaic'-Oh tear, oh tear 1" 

" Did they eat the head and hands and " 

" Hold your tongue, Tom Cringle, don't interrupt me, you^ did not eat 
them : I tell it as it was told to me. So Isaac Gnmm," continued Fyall, 
" was fairly overcome ; the kindly feelings of his nature were at length 
stirred up, and as he turned away, he wept — blew his nose hard, like a 
Chaldean trumpet in the new moon ~ and while the large tears conrsed 
each other down his care-worn cheeks, he exclaimed, vnringing the dtp- 
tain's hand, in a voice tremulous and scarcely audible from extreme emo- 
tion, * Oh, Isaac Grimm, Isaac Grimm — tid not your heart mishgrve you, 
ven you vas commit te great blasphemy of invoish Ezekiel, flesh of your 
flesh, pone of your pone — as pan— de onclean peast I mean. If "you hat 
put invoish him ash pee/, surely te earthly tabernacle of him, as always 
sheet in de high places in te sinacogue, would never have peen allow to pass 
troo te powels of te pershicuting Nazareen. Ah, mine goot captain ^ mine 
very tear friend — vat — vat — vat av you done wid de cask, captain V " 

** Oh most lame and impotent conclusion," sung out the judge, who by 
this time had become deucedly prosy, and all hands arose, as if by com- 
mon consent, and agreed that we had got enough. 

So off we started m ^oup^ — Fyall, Captain Transom, Whiffle, Jimrm 
Bang, and myself, saUied forth in a bunch, pretty well inclined for a laik, 
you may guess. There are no lamps in the streets in Kingston, and as all 
the decent part of the community are in their cavies by half-past nine in the 
evening, and as it was now <* the witching time o' night," there was not a 
soul in the streets that we saw, except when we passed a solitary town- 
guard, lurking about some dark comer under the piazzas. These same 
streets, which were wide and comfortable enough in the daytime, had be> 
come unaccountably nairow and intricate since six o'clock in the evenings 



TOM cbinolb's loo. 171 

Bcndy although the object of the' party was to convoy Captain Transom 
waSA in3r8etf to our boat at the Ordnance Wkarf, it struck me that we were 
as frequsntly on a totally different tack. 

** I say, Cringle, my boy,'' stuttered ont my superior, lieutmant and 
eopCotn bein^ both drowned in and equalized by the claret — ** why, Tom, 
Tom Cringle, you dog— don't yon hear your superior officer speak, sir, eh ?*' 

My Buperior officer, during this address, was standing with both arms 
round a pillar of the piazza. 

** I am here, sir," said I. 

«*Wby, I know that; but whydoift^ou speak when I Hillo — 

Where's Aaron, and Fyall, and the refit, eh ?" 

They had been attractml by sounds of revelry in a splendid mansion in 
the next street, which we could see was lit up with great brilliancy, and 
they had at this time shot about fifty yards ahead of us, working to wind- 
vaid, tack and tack, like Commodore Trunnion. 

** Ah, I see," said Transom; "let us heave ahead, Tom — now do ye 
hear ? — stand you' with your white trousers against the next pillar." — The 
ranges supporting the piazza were at distances of about twenty feet from 
each other. — "Ah, stand there now — I see it" — So he weighed from 
the one he had tackled to, and making a sta^ering bolt of it,'he ran up to 
the pillar against which I stood, whose position was marked by my wnite 
vestments, where he again hooked on for a second or twoj-untiM had taken 
up a new position. 

^ " There, my boy, that's the way to lay out a warp— right in tiie wind's 
eye, Tom — we shall fairly beat those lubbers wno are tacking in the 
atteam — notlung like warping in the dead water near the shore — mark 
that down, Tom — never beat in a tide- way when you can warp up along 
shore in tlie dead water ~ Damn the judge's ice " — (hiccup) ■*- " he has 
pcMUoned me with that piece he plopped in my last whitewasn of madeira. 
Ue a jd^^ I He may be a good crmi — criminal judge, but no judge of 
wine — Why dont you laugh, Tom, eh ? — and then his saw — the rasp 
^ a saw I hate — wish it, and a whole nest more, had been in his legal 
stomach — full of Old saws — Shakspeara — he, he — why don't you 
lau^h, Tom? — Poisoned by the judge, by Jupiter — Now, here we aw 
Uiny abreast of them -- Hillo ! — Fyall, what Are you after ?" 

-^ Hush, hush," said Fyall, with drunken gravity. 

^ And hush, hush," said Aaron Ban^. 

*<Come here, Tom, come here," said Whiffle, in a whispec We wei« 
now directly under the piazza of the fine house, in the first floor of which 
some gay scene was enacting. " Here, Tom, here— now stand there— 
hold by that pillar there. 1 say, Transom, give me a lift. 

" Can't, Whiffle, can't, for the soul of me, Peregrine, my dear — but I 
see, I see.^' 

With that the gallant captain got down on ttH fours ; Whiffle, a small 
Bght man, got on his back, and, with the aid of Bang and Fyall, managed 
to scramble upon my shoulders, where he stood, holding by the window 
sill above, with a foot on each side of my head. His little red face was 
thns raised flush with the window sill, so that he could see into the piazza 
on the first floor, which was dark, right through into the magnificent and 
sparUing drawing-room beyond. 

" Now tell us what's to be seen," said Aaron. 

" Stop, stop," rejoined Whiffle — " My eye, what a lot of splendid 
women — no men — a regular lady party — Hush 1 a song." A harp was 
struck, and a symphony of Beethoven's played with great taste— A song^ 
tow and melancholy, from two females followed. 

« The music of the spheres!" ^uoth Whiffle. 

'We were rapt — we iiad been inspired before — and, drunk as we were, 



17d TOM CRIMGLS'S hOQ, 

there we sat or stood, as best suited us^ exlubiting the strange si^t of a 
cluster of silfiit tipsy men. At length, al one of the finest swells, I heard 
a curious gurgling sound overhead, as if some one was being gagged, and 
I fancied Peregrine became lighter on my shoulden— Another line die- 
away note — I was sure of it. 

<' Baflg, Bang — Fyall — He is evaporating with delight — no weight at 
•11 — growing more and more ethereal —lighter and lighter, as I am a gen- 
tleman — he is off — goinff , going, gone -^ exhaled into the blue heavens, 
by all that is most wondenul !" 

Puzzled beyond measure, I stept hurriedly back, and capsized over the 
captain, who was still enacting the joint^stool on all-fours oehind me, by 
which Whiffle had mounted to my cross-treesi and ^ere we rolled in the 
sand, master and man. 

'* Murdered, Tom Cringle — Burdered — you have hogged me like old 
Ramilies — broke my back, Tom — spoiled my quadrilline for ever and a 
day ! damn the judge*s ice though, and the saw particularly.*' 

'* Where is he — where is Whiffle ?" inquired all hands in a volley. 

** The devil only knows,'? said I ; ** he has flown up into the clouds, 
catch him who can. He has left this earth anyhow, that is clear.'' 

** Ha, ha!" cried Fvajl, in great glee, who had seen him drawn into the 
window by several white figures, after they had tieji a silk handkerchief 
over his moutb : "follow me, my boys;" and we all scrambled after him to 
the front door of the house, to which we ascended by a handsome flight of 
marble steps, and when there, we began to thunder away for admittance. 
The door was opened by a very respectable-looking elderly sentieman, wiA 
well-powdered nair, and attended by two men-servants m nandsome live- 
ries, carrying lights. His bearing and genUemanlike deportment had an 
immediate effect on me, and I beueve on the others too. He knew Fyall 
and Whiffle, it appeared. 

*< Mr. Fyall," he said, with much gentieness, " I know it is only meant 
as a frolic, but really I hope you will now end it. Among yourselves, 
gentiemen, this may be all very well, but considering my religion, and the 
slights we Hebrews are so oAen exposed to, myself and my family are more 
sensitive and pervious to insult than you can well understand." 

" My dear fellow," quoth Fyall, " we are all very sorry ; the fact is, we 
had some damned bad shaddock after dinner, which has made us very 
ciddy and*foolish somehow. Do you know, I coul^ almost fancy I bad 
been drinking wuie." 

**Cool anddelicioiisly impudent that same, (hiccup,") quoth the skipper. 

" But hand us back Uttie Whiffle," continued Fyall,*' and we shall be oS" 

" Here Whiffle^s voice was heard firom the drawing-room. ^ Here, 
Fyall ! — Tom Cringle ! — Here, here, or I shall be murdered !*» 

** Ah ! I see," saioMr. H., " this way, gentiemen. Come, I will deliver 
the culprit to you ;" and we followed him into the drawing-room, a most 
magnificent saloon, at least forty feet by thirty, brilliantly lit up with crystal 
lamps, and massive silver candelabra, and filled with elegant furniture, 
which was reflected, along vnth the chandeliers that hung from the centre 
of the ooach-roof, by several large minors, in rich frames, as well as in the 
hi^ly polished mahogany floor. 

Tliere, in the middle of the room, the other end of it being occupied by a 
bevy of twelve or fifteen richly-dressed females, visiters, as we conjectured, 
eat our friend Peregrine, pinioned in a large easy-chair, with shawls and 
scarfs, amidst a sea of silk cushions, by four oeautiful young women, black 
hair and eyes, clear white skins, fine figures, and little clothing. A young 
Jewess is a beautiful animal, althou^, like the \inclean — which they 
abhor — they don't improve by age, 

When we entered, the blushing girls, who had been beating Whiffle 



TOM CRlir«LE'8 UM 173 

VfOtida nuncUe Bfedns^ with their large garden fans, dashed tiuoogh a side- 
door, uDable to contain their laughter, wUeh we heard long after they had 
Tanished, echoing throngh the lof^ galleries of the house. * Our captive 
knight being restored to us, we inade our bows to the other ladies, who 
were expiring witii laughter, and took our leave, with little Whiffle on our 
shoulders^ the worthy Hebrew, whom I afterwards knew in London, 
sending his servant and gig with Captain Transom and myself to the 
wharf. There we tumblel ourselves mto the boat, and got on board the 
Firebrand abbut three in the morning. We were by this time pretty well 
sobered ; at four a gun was iired, the topsails were let fall, and sheeted 
home, and topgallant-sails set over them, the ship having previously been 
hove short ; at half-past, the cable b^ng right up and down «• another gun 
— the drums and fifes beat merrily — spin new the capstan, tramp went the 
men that manned it. We were under weigh —-Eastward, ho ! — for Sat^ 
tiagode Cuba. 



CHAPTER XIL 

THE CRUISE OF THE FIREBKAND. 

Skewing, among other pleasant matters toell worthy of being recordedt how 
Thomas communed with his two Consciences* 

*' Oh. who can tell, save he whose heart hath tried, 
* And danced in triumph o'er the waters wide, 

The exulting sense, the pulse's maddening play, 
That thrills the wanderer of that iradcless way V* 

The Corbaib* 

We had to beat up for three days before we could weather the east end 
of Jamaica, and tearing work we had of it. I had seen bad weather and 
heavy seas in several quarters of the globe — I had tumbled about under a 
close-reefed main-tepsail and reefed foresail, on the long seas in the Bay of 
Biscay -^ I had been kicked about in a seventy-four, off the Cape of Good 
Hope, as If she had been a cork — I had been hove hither and thither, by 
the short jumble of the North Sea, about Heligoland, and the shoals lying 
off the moutii of the Elbe, when everything over head was black as thunder, 
&nd all beneath as white as snow -^ l had enioyed the luxury of being torn 
in pieces by a^porth-wester, which compelled us to lie-to for ten days at a 
stretch, under storm stay-sails, off the coast of Yankeeland, with a elear, 
deep, cold, blue tky above us, without a cloud, where the sun shone brightly 
the whole tim'e^y day, and a glorious harvest moon by night, as if they 
were smiling in derision upon our riven and strained ship, as she reeled to 
and fro like a wounded Titan ; at one time buried in the trough of the sea, 
at another cast upwards towards the heavens by the throes of the tormented 
Waters, from the troubled bos6m of the bounding and roaring ocean, aitaidst 
hundreds of miniature rainbows, (ay, rahibows by night as well as by day,) 
hi a hieTsing storm of white, foaming, seething spray, torn from the curling 
and rolling bright green crests of the mountainous billows. And I have 
had more than one narrow squeak for it in the neighbourhood of the *' still 
vexed Bermoothes," besides various other small af&rs, written in this boke; 
but the devil such another tumblification had I ever experienced — not as 
to danger, for there was none except to our spars and risgins, but as to 
discomfort — as I did in that short, cross, splashing, and boiling sea, off 
Morant Point. By noon, however, on the second day, havine had a slant 
from the land-wind in the night previous, we got well to windward of the 
long sandy spit that forms the east end of the island, and were in the act 



174 TOic cftiJioLm's <.o«. 

of getting a small paU of the weather braoet. before ed'^iig svvay for St 
Jago, when the wind fell suddenly, and in half an^ hour it was stark calm 
» ** una Jimosa calnuu" as the Spahisb eailoiv quaintly enough eaU it. 

We sot rolling tackW up, and the topgallcnt-masta down^ and atnd- 
ding-Mula out of the tops, and lessened the lombeV and we^ht alolt in eveiy 
wav we could think of, but. nerertheless, we cootinaea to roll eunwaie 
under, dipping tiie main yard-arm into the water every now and tfien, and 
setting every thing adiift, b^ow^and on deck, that was not bolted down, or 
otherwise well secured. 

When 1 went down to dinner, the scene was extremely good. OM Teric, 
the first lieutenant, was in the chair — one of the boys waft jammed a« his 
side, with his claws fastened round the foot of the table, holding a tureen 
of boiling pease-soup, with lumps of pork swimming in it, which the afore- 
said YetL Was bailing forth with .great assiduity to his messmates. H)r- 
drostatics were much in vogue — the tendency of fluids to regain i^A 
equilibrium (confound them, Uiey haveoften in the shape of claret oestroyed 
mine) was beautifully illustrateo, as the contents of each carefully balanced 
soup-plate kept swaying about on the principle of the sprit leveL The 
doctor was croupier, and as it war a return dinner to the captain, all hands 
were regularly nggeid out, the lieutenants, with their epaulets and best coats, 
and the master, purser, and doctor, all fittingly attired. When I first en- 
tered, as I made my obeisance to the captain, I thought I saw an empty 
seat next him, but the matter of the soup was rather an engrossing concern, 
and took up my attention, so that I paid no particular regard to the circum- 
stance ; however, when we had' ali discussed the same, and were driink- 
ing our first glass of Tenerifle, 1 raised my eyes to hob and nob with the 
master, when '—ye gods and little fishes — who should they light on, but 
the merry phiz -^ merry, alas ! no more — 6f Aaron Bang, Esquire, who, 
during the soup interlude, had slid into the vacant chair unperceived by me. 

<* Why, Mr. Bang, where, in the name of all that is comical, w&ere tune 
you dropped from?'* Alas ! poor Aaron—- Aaron in a foiling sea was of 
no kindred to Aaron ashore. His rosy ^lls were no longer rosy — his 
round plump face seemed to be covered with parchment from an okl bass- 
drum, cut out from the centre where most bronzed by the drumstick — there 
was no speculation in his eyes that he did glare witlud— and his lips, which 
were usually firm, and open, disclosing his nice teeth, in frequent grin, were 
held together, as if he had been in grievous pain. At length he did ven- 
ture to open them — and, like the gnoet of Hamlet's<father, '< it lifted up 
its head and did address itself to motion, as it would speak." But they 
began to quiver, and he once more screwed them together,, as if he feared 
the very exertion of iUtering a word or two might unsettle his moniplies. 

The master was an odd garrulous small man, who had a certain number 
of stated jokes, which, so u>ng as thejr were endured, he unmercifully in- 
flicted on his messmates. I had come in for my sh^ure, as a new comer, as 
well as the rest ; but even with me, although [ had been but recently ap- 
pointed, they had already began to pall and wax wearysome ; and bUnd as 
the beetle of a body was, he coula not help seong this. So poor Bang^ 
unaUe to return a shot, sea-sick and crestfallen, offered a target that he 
could not resist taking aim at Dinner was half over, and Bang had not 
eaten anything, when, unseasonable as the hour was, the little pot-valiant 
master, primed- with two tumblers of grog, in defiance of the captain's 
presence, fairly fastened on him, like a remora, and pinned him down with 
one of his long-winded stories about Captain David Jones, in the Phantome, 
during a cruise ofi*Cape Flyaway, having run foul of a whale, and thereby 
nearly foundered ; and that at length, havin^^ got the mon'^ter harpooned 
and speared, and the devil knows what, but it ended in getting her along- 
side^ when they scuttled the leviathan, and then, wondenul to relate, they 



1 



YOM CBHTGLB^S LOS. ITS 

$wnA a GkeeDlandm^Lii, with rofyal yards crossed, in her maw, mid the cap- 
Uin mid mate in the cahin quarrelling about the reehonmg, 

**What 4p you think oi thai, Mr. Bang — as well they mi^ht be, Mr. 
Bang -« as well they might be V\ Saag said nothing, but at me moment 
—whether the said Aaron lent wings to. the bird or no I cannot tell — a 
goose, swimming in apple sance, which he was, wkh a mo8t>tem connte- 
nance, endeavouring to caire, fetched away right over the gunwale of the 
dish, and taking a whole boat of melted batter with it, splashed across the 
table daring a tiemendous roll, that made everything creak and groan again, 
right into the small master's lap whp was his ris-^vis* I coulAear Aaron 
grumble out somethua^ about — <^ Strange affinity — birds ^ a feather^'* 
' But his time was up, his minutes were numbered, and like a shot he bolted 
fiom the table^ skulling or mtber clawmg away towards the door, by the 
backs of the duirs, like a green parrot, until he reached the marine at the 
bottom of the ladder, at the door of the captain's cabin, found whose neck 
he immediately fetterlocked his fins. 

fie had only time to exclaim to his new aUy, ** My dear fellow, get me 
some brandy and water, for the lore of merc^ ^' -^ when he blew up, with 
an ezplodon like the bursting of a steanvboiler — ''Oh dear, oh dear,** we 
could hear him murmuring in the lulls of his agony — then another loud re- 
port—" there goes my yesterday's supper, hot grog and toasted cheese"— 
another roar, aaif the spirit was leai^ng its earthly tabernacle — "dinner 
—claret-^ madeira — all cruel bad in a second edition — cheese, teal, and 
rinjgtail pigeon *7 black crabs — calapi and turtie-soup " — as his fleshly 
indulgences of the pcerious day rose up in judgment against him, like a 
ipan'B evil deeds on his death-bed. At length the Tarious strata of his in- 
terior vf ere entirely ezcayated — " Ah ) — L nave got to my breakfast — to 
the simple tea and toast at last Bmndy and water, my dear Tmnsom, 
brandy and water, ray darlins^ hot, without sugar " — and *< brandy and 
water" died in echoes in the distance as he was stewed away into his cot 
in ^e captain's cabin. It seems that it had been all arranged between him 
and Transoin, that he was to set ojOT for SL Thomas in the East, the morn- 
ing on which we sailed, and to get a shove out in the pilet>boat schooner, 
from Morant Bay, to join ns for the cruise ; and accordingly he had come 
en board the night previous when I was below, and &mg somewhat 
^qualmish he had wisely kept his cot ; the fun of the thing depending, as it 
seemed, on all hands carefully keeping it from me that he was on boaid. 

lapprdiend most peopl^ indulge in the fancy that they have ConHitfteee 
— siiGO as they are;. I myself now ^ even 1, Thomas Cringle, Esquire, 
among sundry vain imagimngs, conceive that /have a Conidmctf >* some- 
what of the caoutchouc ^rder I wiH confess ^-stretching alitde upon oo- 
easiott, when the gale of iky passion blows high — nevertheless a highly 

> Tespactable Consciencet as thmgs go — a stalwart ondiancy customer, who 
will not be gainsaid or contradi^ed ; but he may be disobeyed, although 
new with impunity. |t is all true that a youn^ well-fledged gentlewoman, 
for ahe is furnished with a most swift pair of vi^ngs, caHed ProtperUy^ some- 
times ^s the better of Master Conseieneef and suMthers the Orim Feature 

' tor a time, under the bed of eider down, whereon you and her ladyship are 
Teposing. BiA she is a sad jilt in many instances, this same ProsperU}^ ; for ' 
eome finermomin^, with the sun elancing in through the crevices of the 
win49Wrshittters,.jttst at the nick ^en, after turning yourself, and rubbing 
your eyes, you courageously thrust forth one leg, with a determination to 
uon your gramashes without more delay — '^Tom," says she, *<Tom 
Cringleri have got tired of you, Thomas \ besides, I hear my next door 
neighbour, Madame Adversity, tirhng at the doer pin; so eve me my 
down-bed, Tom, and I'm o£" With that she bangs open we window, 
«ad before I recover from my surprise^ launches forth, with a loud %ohkr^ 

46—6 



.i. 



176 TOM criitolb's log. 

mattrens and all, leaving me, Pilgarlick, lyinjg on the paiIla8B€. Well, her 
nest is scarcely cold, wSen in comes Mistress JldvertUy^ a wee oat-spoken 
— sour — crabbit* — gizzened anatomy of an old woman — '<You ne*er- 
tl^-^eelf Tam,*' quoth she, <^is it no enough that you consort with that scar- 
let limmer, who nas just escaped through the winday, but ye maun smoor 
my first-bom, puir Conscimee, atween ye? Whar hae ye stowed him, 
man — tell me tliat?'* And the ancient damosel gives me a ihrewd clip on 
the skull with the poker. ** Thafs right, mother,*' quoth Conscience, trom 
beneath the stra^ mattress — '*Give it to htm — hell no hear me -^ another 
devel, mother." And I now found that my own weight, deserted as I was 
by that — ahem — Prosperity, was no lonjser sufficient to keep him down. 
So up he rose, with a loud peek; and while the old woman keeH^hauled me 
with a poker on one side, he yerked at me on the other, «ntil he at length 
gave me a r^ular croas-kuttock, and then between them they di#()l€Mi me 
outright When I was fairly floored, ** Now, my man,^ said Adversity, 
"I bear no spite ; if you will but listen to my boy there, we shall be good - 
firiends still. He is never unreasonable. He has no objections to your 
consorting even with Madame Prosperity, in a decent way ; but he will 
not consent to your letting her. get the better of you, nor to your doting on 
her, even to the giving her asfa^ of your bed, when she should never he 
allowed to get rarther Uian the servants* hall, for she should be kept in 
subjection, or sheUl ruin you for ever, Thomas. — Conscience is a rou^ 
lad, I grant you, and I am keen and snell also ; but never mmd, take fais 
advice, and vou'll be some credit to your freens yet, ye scoonrel." I did ■ 
so, and the old lady*s visits became shorter and shorter, and more and more 
distant, until at length they ceased altogether ; and once more Prosperiiy, 
like a dove with its neaven-borrowed hues all glowing in the morning sun, 
pitched one morning on my window-sill. It was in' June. " Tom, I am 
oome back again.'* I glowered at her with all my bir. She made a step oi^ 
two towards me, and the lesson of Adversity was fast evaporating uito 
thin air, when, lo! the sleeping lion himself awoke. "Thomas," said 
Conscience, in a voice that made my flesh creep, "not into youBbed, 
neither into your bosom, Thomas. Be civil to the young woman, but re- 
member what your best friend Adversity told you, and never let her be 
more than your handmaiden again ; free to come, free to go, but never 
more to be your mistress.** I screw mys^f about, and twist, and turn in 
great perplexity — Hard enough all this, and I am half inclined to try to 
Sirottle Conscience outright 

But to make a lonz story short — L was resolute — ** Step into the par- 
lour, my dearest — iTiope we shall never part any more ; but yon nrast not 
fst the upper hand, you know. So step into the other room, and wheaever 
get my inexpressibles on, I will come to you there.*' 

But this Conscience, about which I am now haoeringf seldom aets the 
monitor in this way, unless against respectable crimes, such as murder, 
debauching your ^i^d*s wife, or stealing. But the ehield I have to 
do with for the present, and who has led me to this rigmarole, is a sort of 
deputy Conscience, a looker-out after small affairs ^- peccadilloes. The 
grewsome carle,Conseienjce Senior, you can grapple with, for he only steps 
forth on great occasions, when he says sternly — and ,the mischief is, tmit 
what he says we know to be true — says lie, *' Thomas Cringle" — '-iie 
never calls me Tom, or Mister, or Lieutenant— "Thomas Cringle," says 
he, 'Mf you do that thing, you shall ,be damned.'* '* Lud<«-mercy,'' quoth 
I, Thomas, "I will perpend. Master Conscience" — and I set myself to 
eschew the evil deed, with all my might B^t Conseienee the Younger — 
whom 1 will take leave to call by Cluashie's appellative hereafter, Consky — 
is a funny little fellow, and another guess sort of a bhap idtogether. An 
Bistaace — ^« I say, Tom, my boy— Tom Cringle— why the deme now » 



TOM CBIirOLG's LOG. 177 

1 

— he won't say "the Devil" for the wotld — "Why the deuce, Tom^ 
donH you confine yourself to a pint of wine at dinner, eh?" quoth Consky. 
"Why will you not give up your toddy after it? Yon are ruining youi; 
interior, Thomas, my fine fellow — the gout is on tlie look-out for you«- 
your legs are spindling, and your paunch is increasing. Read Hamlet's 
speech to Polonius, Tom, and if you don't find all the marks^of premature 
old age creeping on you, then am I, Conshyf a Dutchman, that's all." Now 
0(m^% always lectures you in the watches of the night j 1 generally think 
his advice is good at breakfast time, and during the forenoon, e^ul, 1 think 
it excellent and most reasonable, and I determine to stick by it — and if 
Conshy and 1 dine alone, I do adhere to his maxims most ri^dly ; but if any 
of my old aUies should topple in to dinner, Conshy^ who is a sohtary me- 
chanic, bolft instanter. Sviti I remember him for a time — we sit down — 
the dinner is good. " I say, Jack, a §lass of wine -^ Peter, what shall we 
have ?" knd until the pint a piece is discussed, all is right between Consby 
and T. But then comes some grouse. Hook, in his double-refined non- 
fltense, palavers about the blasphemy of white wine after brmvn game — and 
he is not far wrong either ; — at least I never thought he was, so long as my 
Hermitage lasted ; but at the time I speak of, it was 'still to the fore — so 
^e moment the pint a piece was out, " Hold hard, Tom, now," cheeps 
little Conshy. " Why, only one glass of Hermitage, Conshy." Consky 
shakes his head. Cheese — after the manner of the ancients — Hook again 

— " Only one glass of port, CtmskuJ^ He shakes his head, and at length 
the cloth is drawn, and a confounded old steward of mine, who is now in- 
stalled as butler, brings in the crystal decanters, sparkling to the wax- 
tights — poor as I am, I consider mutton fats damnable — and every thing 
as it should be, tlown to a finser-glass. " Now, Mary^ where are tne chiE 
dren?" I am resolute. ** Jack, I can't drink — out of^ sorts, my boy— so 
mind yourself, you and Peter. — Now, Cimshy^ says I, "where are you 
noto, my boy 7" But just at this instant, Jack strikes out, with << Cringle, 
order me a tumbler —something hot — I don't care what it is." — " Ditto," 
quoth Peter ; and down crumbles all my fine fabric of resolutions, only te 
be rebuilt to-morrow, before breakfast again, or at any odd moment, wnen 
one's flesh is somewhat fishified. — Another instance. "1 say, Tom," 
says Ponshy, " do give over looking at that smart girl tripping it along t'other 
side of the street" — ** Presently, my dear Jittle man," says I. " Tight 
fittle woman that, Conshy ; handsome bows ; good bearmgs forward ; 
tumbles home sweetly about the waist, and tumbles out weU above the 
hips ; what a beautiful run ! and spars clean and tight ; back-stays weU 
set up." — " Now, Tom, you vagabond, give over. Have you not a wife 
of your own ?" — " To be sure f have, Cdhshy, my darling ; but toujours 
per^* — **Have done, now, you are going too far," says Conshy. — "Oh, 

you be ." — " Thomas," cries a still stern voice, from the very inmost 

recesses of my heart. Wee Conshy holds up his finger, and pricks his ear. 
"Do you hear him ?" says he. — "I hear," says I, " I hear and tremblej*^ 
Now, to apply. Conshy has been nudging me for this half hour to hold 
my tongue regarding Aaron Bang's sea-sickness. — " It is absolutely inde- 
cent," quoth he. — **. Can't help it, Conshy ; no more than the extra tumbler ; 
those who are delicate need not read it ; those who are indelicate won't be 
the worse of it"— *< But," persists Cimsky^** I have other hairs in your neckj 
Master Tonimy — you are growing a bit of a buffoon on us, and sorry am I 
to say it, sometimes not altogether, as a man with a rank imagination may 
construe you, a very decent one. Now, my good boy, I would have yoii to 
vemember that what you write is condemned in the pages of Old Christo- 
pher to an amber immortalizationy'^ (Ohon for the Piovost!) "nay, don't 
peik and smile, I mean no compliment, for you are but the straw in the 
^rnXfer, Tom, and Ae only wonder is, how the deuce you got there." 



179 TOM oaiTGLB's LOO. 

•* But, my dear Cmuhy " . 

** Hold your tonge, Tom — let me say out my say, and finish my adviee, 
—and how will you answer to my father, in your old a^e, when yoath, 
and health, and wealth may have flown, if you find any ihmg in this y<mr 
Loff calculated to bring a biush on an innocent cheek, Tom, wheii the time 
shall have for ever passed away wherein you couH have remedied the iojmfjrT 
For Conscience will speak to you then, not as I do now, in friendly confi- 
dence, ancT impeHed py a sincere regard for you, yon right-hearted, but 
thou^tless, slapdash vagabond.*^ 

Tliere must have been a great deal of absurd perplexity in my visage, as 
I sat receiving my rebuke, for [ noticed Conshy smile, which gave rae 
Courage. 

" I will reform, Conshy^ and that immediately ; but my mord is good, 
roan.'* 

** Well, well, Tom, I will take you at your word, so set about it, set 
about it.*» 

'* But, Conshy — a word in your starboard lug — why don't yon go fo tbe 
fountain-head — why don't you try your hand in a cuftain lecture on Old 
Kit North himself, the hoary sinner who seduced me ?'* 

Conshy could no longer contain himself; the very idea of Old Kit having 
a conscience of any kind or description whatever, so tickled him, that he 
burst into a most uproarious fit of laughter, which I was in great hope* 
wtMild have choked nim, and thus made me well quit of him for ever. For 
some time I listened in great amazement, but there was something so in 
fectious in his fun, that presently I began -lo laugh too, which only increased 
bis cachinnation, so there were Conshy and I roaring, and shouting, with 
the tears running down our cheeks. 

" Kit, listen to me ! — Oh, Lord " 

'* You are swearing, Conshy,"^ said I, rubbing my hands at having caug|it 
him tripping. 

'' And enough to make a Ctuaker swear," quoth ne, still laughing. ** No» 
no. Kit never listens to me -- wliy, he would never listen even to my father 
until the gout and the Catholic Relief Bill, and last of all, the.Reform BiO» 
broke him down, and softened his heart." 

So there is an allegory for you, worthy of John Bunyan. 

Next morning we got the breeze again, when we bore away for Santiag^^ 
de Cuba, and arrived off the Mora Castle on the fifth evening at sunse^ 
after leaving Port Royal harbour. The Spaniards, in their better days^ 
were a kind of coral worms ; wherever they planted their colonies, they 
immediately set to covering themselves in with stone and mortar ; applying 
their own entire energies, and ihe whole strength of their Indian captives, 
first to the erection oxa fort ; their second object (postponed to the other only 
through absolute necessity) being then to build a temple to their GocL 
Gradually vast fabric^ appeared, where before there was nothing but one 
eternal forest, or a howbog wil^erpess ; and although it does come ever 
one, when looking at the splendid moles, and firm-built bastions, and sti»> 
pendens churches of the New World — Uie latter surpassing, or at the least 
equalling in magnificence and grandeur those of Old Spain herself — tbat 
they are all cemented by the blood and sweat of millions of gentle Indians, of 
whose harmless existence in many quarters they remain the only montt* 
nents. still it is a melancholy reflection to look back and picture to end's 
self what Spain was, and to compare her 'in her high and pahny state, with 
what she is now — to compare her present condition even with what shewas, 
when, as a young midsoipman, I first visited her glorious transatlantic 
colonies. 

Until the Peninsula was overrun by the French, Buenos Ayrcs, La* 
goayra, Porto CaveUo, Maracaiboi, Santa Martha, and that atroogboM oT 



r 



TOM CRuraLc's LOO. 179 

the west, the key of the IsthmuB of Dimea, Cartagena de las Indias, with 
Porto BeUo, and Vera CniZi on the Atlantic shores of South America, were 
all prosperous and happy — *< Llenas de pUUa'j*^ and on the western coast, 
Valparaiso, Lima, Panama, and San Bias, were tbriying and increasing in 
population and wealth. England, through her colonies, was at that time 
oxiTias a lucrative trade with all of them ; but the demon of diange was 
abroad, blown thither by the pestilent ,bfeath of European liberalism. 
What a vineyard for Abb^ Sieyes to have laboured in ! Every capUama 
would have become a purchaser of one of his cut and dried constitutions. 
Indeed he could not have turned them out of hand fast enough. The 
enlightened f«io, in these countries, were as a drop in the bucket to the 
unenlightened numiif ; and although no doubt there were numbers of the 
former who were well-meaning men, yet they were one and all guUty 
of that prime political blunder, m common with our whig friends at home, 
of expecting a set of semi-barbaiians to see the beauty m*, and to conform 
to, their newfangled codes of free institutions, for which they were as 
ready as I am to die at this present moment Bolivar, in his early fever of 
patriotism, mode the same mistake, although his shrewd mmd, in his later 
career, saw that a despotism, pure or immtre — I will not qualify it ^ was 
your only government for the saoageg he nad at one time dignified with the 
name of felloW'patriots. But he came to this wholesome conclusion too 
late ; he tried baick, it is true, but it would not do ; the fiend had been nn-> 
diained, and at length hunted him broken-hearted into his grave. 

Buttho men of mind tell us, that thoso countries are now going fhiough 
the polUie4d •/ermentotton, which by and by will clear, when the sediment 
will oe deposited, and the different ranks will each take their acknowledged 
and undisputed stations in society ; and the United States are onee and 
again quoted against we of the adverse faction, as if there were the most 
remote analog between their population, originally composed of all the 
cleverest temindrels of Europe, and the barbarians of Spanish America, where 
a few master spirits, all old Spaniards, did indeed for a season stick firy 
off from the dark mass of savages among whom their lot Mras cast, like stars 
in a nooonless ni^t, but only to solier a speedy eclipse from the clouds and 
storm which they themselves had set in motion. We shall see. The scum 
as yet is uppermost, and does not seem likely to subside^ but it may bail 
over* In Cuba, however, all was at the time quiet, and still is, 1 believeL 
prosperous, and that too without having come through this said bleaaed 
political fermentation. 

During the night we stood off and on under easy sail, and next morning, 
when the dav broke, with a strong breese and afresh shower, we were 
about two miles off the Moro Castle, at the entrance of Santiago de Cuba. 

I went alofl to look around me. The sea-breeze blew strong, until it 
reached within half a mile of the shore, where it stopped short, shooting in 
cat's-paws occasionally into the smooth belt of ^water beyond, where the 
long unbroken swell relied like molten silver in the rising sun, without a 
ri^eon its-surfiuse, until it dashed its gigantic undulations against the 
face of the precipitous clifib on the shore, and fiew up in smoke. The en- 
trance to tiie harbour is very narrow, and looked from my perch like a zi^ 
zag chasm in the rock, inlaid at the bottom with polishea blue steel; so 
clear, and calm, and pellucid was the still water, wherein the frowning 
rocks, and magnificent trees on the banks, and the white Moro, rising witE 
its grinning tiers of cannon, battery above battery, were refiected vHuH in 
speetdum^ as if it had been in a mirror. 

We had shortened sail, and fired a £un, and the signal for a pilot war 
flytAg, wben the captain hailed me. '* Does the sea-breeie blow into the 
faaiboor yet, Mr. Cringle ?" 

•< Not yet, rir ; but it is creeping in fast." 

6* 



180 TOM CRIHGIfC's LOG. 

. , • . • •' 

" Very wdUL Let me know when we can ran in* Mr. Teik, back tfie 
main-topsan, and heave the rfiip ta." . f . * 

Pretently the pilot canoe, wim the Spanish flag flying in the stern, came 
alongside ; and the pilot, a tall brown man, a Jtformo, as tfete SjxBtiiianSv 
■ay, came on board. He wore a glazed cocked hat, rather an oot-of^tfe^ 
way finish to his figure, which was rigged in a mmple Osnaburg shirt, and 
pair of troasers. He came on the qwurter-deck; and made hitf bow to the 
captain with all the ease in the workl, wished him a good morning, and 
taking his place by the quarter-master at the cdnn, he took charge! of Uie 
ship* '* Senor,'' quoth he to mej ** is de harbour bk>w up yet ? I mean, 
Toa see de viento walking into him ? •— de temll^dat is land-wind — liasr 
M cease P* 

f* No," I answered ; '*the belt of smooth water is growing narrower fast ; 
but the sea-breeze does not blow into the channel yet. Now it has reached 
tJM entrance.** ^ • • ' 

o^ Ah, den make sail, Senor Capitan; fill de main-topsail.'* We stood 
in, the scene beeomtag more and more magnificent air we aptmMicfaed the 
laad. 

The fresh green shores of this glorious island lay before us, fringed with 
white surf, as the everlasting ocean in its approach to it gradually changed 
its dark blue colour, a» the water shoaled, into a Itfight jdyous sreen unSer 
the blazing sun, as if in sympathy with the genius of the fair land, befoie 
it tumbled at his feet its gently swelling billows in shaking titmnders on 
the reefs and rocky face of the coast, against which they were driven up 
in clouds, the intense of their sacrifice. The undulating hills in the 
vicinity were all, either cleared, and covered with the greenest verdure that 
imagination can picture, over which strayed large herds of cattle, or witb 
forests of gigantic trees, from among which, every now and then, peeped 
out some pafm-tbatcfaed mountain settlement, with its small thread of blue 
smoke floating up into the cahn clear morning air, while the blue hills in 
the distance rose higher and higher, and more and more blue, and dreamy, 
and indistinct, until their ruggid summits could not be^istinguished from 
the clouds through the glimmering hot haze of the tropics. 

'< By the mark seven,'' sung out the leadsman in tne starboard chains, 
— */Ctnarter less three," responded he in the larboard, showing that the 
inequalities of the surface at the bottom Qf the sea, even in the breadth of 
the ship, were at least as abrupt as those presented above water by the 
sides 01 the natural cantft into which we were now rnnaing. By this time, 
on our right hand, we were within pistol-shot of the Moro, where the chan> 
nel is not above fiifty yards across ; indeed there is a diain, made fkst to a 
rook on the opposite side, that can be hove up by a capstan until it is level 
with the water, so as to constitute an insurmountaole obstacle to any' 
attempt to foroe an entrance in time of war. As we stood in, the golden 
flag of Spain rose slowly on the staff at the Water Battery, and cast its 
large sleepy folds abroad in the breeze ; bat, instead of floating over mail- 
clal men, or Spanish soldiers m wariike array, three poor devils of half- 
naked malattoes stuck their heads out of an embrasure under its stiMulow* 
^'-Senor Capitan,** they shouted, **una BtAtlla de Mma,wfr el hmot del 
iNri#»*' We were mighf^ cHoee upon leaving the boaefli of tne old ship heie, 
Df th^ by ; for at the very instanC of entering the haibout^s mouth, the 
land-wind checked us off, and very nearlv hove us brdadside upon the rocks 
below the castle, against which the swell was breaking in thunder. 

^ Let go the am^or,** sung out the captain. 

*< AH gone, sir," promptlv responded the boatswaiii from the fbrecastler 
And as he spo^e^ we struck once, twice, and ver^ heavily the third time. 
But the braese cotmng in strentf, y^e fetched way again ; and as tkil eaUe^ 
was promptly cut, we got safely oft However, on weighing the anchor' 



TOM crikole's loo. 181 

afterwards, we found the water had been so shoal under the bows, that the 
ship, when she stranded, had Struck it, and broken the stock short oflT by 
the rin^. The only laughable part of the storj consisted in the old cook, 
an Irishman, with one leg and naif an eye, scrambling out of the galley 
nearly naked, in his trousers, shirt, and greasy nightcap, and sprawling on 
all fours after two tubsfull of yams, which the third thump had capsized all 
over the deck. " Oh you scurvy-looking tief,*> said hie, eyeing tne pilot ; 
"if it was running us ashore you were set on, why the blazes couldn't ye 
wait until the yams were in the copper, bad luck to ye — and them all 
scraped too ! I do believe, if they even had been taties, U would have been all 
the same to you,^ We stood on, the channel narrowing still more ^ ^e 
rocks rising to a height of at least five hundred feet from the water's edge, 
as sharply and precipitously as if they had only yesterday been split asun- 
der ; the splintered projections and pmnacles on one side having each their 
corresponding fissures and indentations on the other^ as if the hand of.a 
giant could have closed them together again. 

Koble trees shot out in all directions wherever they could find a little 
earth and a crevice to hold on by, almost meeting overhead in several 
places, and alive with all kinds of birds and beasts incidental to the climate ; 
parrots of all sorts, great and small, clomby and hun^, and fluttered among 
the branches ; and pigeons of numberless varieties ; and the glancing 
woodpecker^ with hid small hammerlike top, fop, tap ; and the West India 
nightingale, and humming-birds of all hues ; while cranes, black, white, 
and gray, frightened from their fishing-stations, stalked and peeped about, 
as awkwardly as a warrant-officer in his long-skirted coat on a Sunday; 
while whole nocks of ducks flew across the mast-heads and through the rig- 
ging ; and the dragon-like guana^, and lizards of many kinds, disported 
toemselves among the branches, not lazily or loathsomely, as we, who have 
only seen a lizard in our cold climate, are apt to picture, but alert, and quick 
as lightning, their colours changing with the chan^ng light or the hues of 
the objects to which they clung, becoming literally in one respect portions 
of the landscape. 

And then the dark, transparent crystal depth of the pure waters under 
foot, reflecting all nature so steadily and distinctly, that in the hollows, 
where the overhangingfoliagoof the laurel-like bushes darkened the scene, 
you could notfor your life tell where the elements met, so blended were 
earth and sea. 

** Starboard,** said I. I had now come on deck. " Starboard, or the 
Riam-topgallant-masthead toiU befoul of the limh of thai tree. Foretop, there , 
—lie out on the larboard fore-yardarm, and be ready to shove her on] if she 
sheers too close." 

"Let go the anchor," struck in the first lieutenant. 

Splash — the cable rumbled through the hause-bole. 

"Now here are we brought up in paradise,'* quoth the doctor. 

" Curukity coo — curukity coo,'* sung out a great bushy- whiskered salloir 
from the crows' nest, who turned out to be no other than our old friend 
Timothy Tailtackle, quite juvenilified by the laughing scene. "Here am 
I, Jack, a booby among the singing-birds," crowed he to one of his mess- 
nuites in the maintop, as he clutched a branch of a tree in his hand, and 
swung himself up into it But the ship, as Old Nick would have it, at the 
▼ery instant dropped astern a few yards in swinging to her anchor, and 
that so suddenly, that she left him on his perch in the tree, converting his 
iest, poor fellow, into melancholy earnest " Oh Lord, sir !** sung out Ti- 
motheus, in a great quandary. " Captain, do heave ahead a bit — Murder 
—I shall never get down again ! Do, Mr. Yerk, if you please, sir I*' And 
there he sat twisting and craning himself about, and screwing his features 
into combinations evincing the most comical perplexity. 



183 TOM criholb's loo. 

* 

The captain, by way of a bit of fun, pretended not to hear hini. 
*'Maintopf there,'' quoth he. 

The midshipman in the top answered him, '* Ay, ay, air." 
''Not you, Mr. Reefpoint; the captain of the top I want" 
" He is not in the top, our," responded little Reefpoint, chuckling like tar 
choke himself. 

" Where the de>fil is he, sir ?" 

" Herci sir," squealed Timothy, his usual gruff voice spindling, into a 
. small cheep through his great perplexity. " Here, sir." 

*'What are you doing there, sur? Come down this moment, siE. Rig 
out the main-topmast-studding'Sail-boom. Mr. Reefpoint, and toll him to 
slew himself down by that long water- withe.'' 

To hear was to obey. Poor Timothy clambered down to the fork of the 
tree, from which the withe depended, and immediately began to warp him- 
self down, until he reached within three or four yards of the starboard fore- 
topsail-yardarm ; but the Corvette stiU dropped astern, so that, after a vain 
attempt to hook on by his feet, he swung off into mid air, hanging by lu» 
hands. 

It was no longer a joke. ''Here, you- black .fellows in the pilot canoe," 
shouted the captain, as Ee threw them a. rope himself. "Pass the end of 
that line round tiie stump yonder -•- that one below the cliff, there — now 
pull like devils, pull." 

They did not understand' a word he said-; but, comprehending his ges- 
tures, did what he wished. 

"Now haul on the line, men — gently, that will do. Missed it again," 
continued the skipper, as the poor fellow once more made a fruitless at- 
tempt to swin^ himself on to toe yard. 

*^Va.y out the warp again," sung out Tailtackle — " quick, quick, let the 
ship swin^ (rom under, and leave me scope to dive, or I shall be oblig^ to 
let go, and be killed on the deck." 

" God bless me, yes," said Transom, " stick out the warp, let her swing 
to her anchor." 

In an instant alt eyes were again fastened with mtense anxiety on the 
poor fellow, whose strength was fast failing, and his* grasp plainly relaxing.- 
" See all clear to pick me up, messmates/' 

Tailtackle slipped down to the extreme end of the black withe, that . 
looked like a scorched snake, pressed his legs close together, 'pointing his 
toes downwards, and then steadying himself for a moment, with his handft- 
light above lus head, and his arms at the full stretch, he dropped, struck 
the water fairly, entiering its dark bliie depths without a splash, and instantly 
disappeared, leaving a white frothv mark on the surface. 

"Di'l you ever see anything better done?" said York. "Why he 
clipped into the water with the speed of light, as clean and clear as if he 
had been a marlinspike." 

" Thank Heaven I" gasped the captain ; for if lie had struck the water 
horizontally, or fallen headlong, he would have been shattered in pieces — 
every bone would have been oroken — he would have been as completely 
smashed as if he had dropped upoii one of the limestone rocks on the iron- 
bound shore. 

" Ship, ahoy !" We were all hreathlesslv looking over the side where he 
fell, expecting to see him rise agiun ;. but toe hail came from the water on 
t'other side. " Ship, ahoy — throw me a rope, good people — a rope,, if you 
please.. Do you mean to careen the ship, that you have all run to the star- 
Doard'side, leaving me to be drowned to port here ?" 

" Ah, Tailtackle ! well done,, old boy," sung out a volley of voices, men 
an(f officers, rejoiced to see the honest fellow aUve. He clambered on 
*^oard, in the bight of one of twenty ropes that were hove to him. 



When be came on deck tiie captain slyly said, ** 1 donH think you'U go a 
Iwrdaesting in a hurry again, Tautackle/' 

Tim looked with a most quizucal expression at his captain, all bUie and 
breathless and dripping as he was ; and then sticking his tongue slightl]^ in 
his cheek, he turned awaj, without addressing him directly, but munnurii^ 
as he went, '* A glass of grog now." 

The captain, with whom he was a favourite, took the hint " Go below 
now, and turn in till eight bells, Tailtackle. Mafame," to the steward, 
** send him a glass of hot brandy grog." 

" A northwester," whispered Tm aside to the functionary j " half and 
iudf, tallow-chops -^eh !" 

About an hour after this a very melancholy accident happened to a poor 
boy on board, of about fifteen years of age, who had already Jbecome a 
great favouiite of mine, from his modest, quiet deportment, as well as of 
all the gunroom officers, although he had not been above a fortnight in the 
ship, fie had let himself down over the bows by the cable to bathe. 
Tnere were several of his comrades standing on the forecastle looking at 
him, and he asked one of them to go out on the spritsail-yard, and look 
. round to* see if there were any sharks in Ihe neighbourhood ; but all around 
was deep, clear, green water. He kept hold of the cable, however, and 
seemed determined not to put himself m harm's way, until a little wicked 
oichin, who used to wait on the warrant-officer^ mess, a small meddling 
snipe of a creature, who ^ot flogged in well-behaved weeks cnly ence, 
began to taunt my little miJd favourite. 

** Why, you chicken-heart. Til wager a thimbleful of grog, that such a 
tailor as you are in the water can't for the, life of jou swim oat^to the buoy 

" Never you mind, Pepperbottom," said the boy, giving the imp the name 
be had ridily earned by repeated flagellations. '< Never you mind. / am 
not ashamea to show my naked hide, you know. But it is against orders 
in these seas to go overboard, unless with a sail underfoot ; solsha'n^ 
ran the risk of being tatooed by the boatswain's mate, like some one I could 
tell of.'» 

** Coward," muttered the little wasp, " you are airaid, sir ;" and ihe other 
lioys abetting the mischief>maker, the lad was goaded to leave his hold of 
. tiie cable, and strike out for the buoy. He reachcMd it, and then tamed, and 
.polled towards the ship again, when he caught laj eye. 

** Who is that overboard ? How dare you, sir, disobey the standing 
order of the ship ? Come in, boy ; come in." 

My hailing the little fellow shoved him off* his balance, and he lost his 
presence of mind for a moment or two, during which he, if anything, widen- 
ed his distance from the ship. 

At this instant the lad on the spritsail-yaid sung out quick and suddenly, 
<<A shark, a sharks" 

And the monster, like a silver pillar, suddenly shot up perpendicular^ 
Irom 0}it the dark .green depths of the sleeping pool, /With the waters 
sparkling and hissing around him, as if he had been a sea-demon rushing 
on his prey. 

" Pull, for the cable, Louis," shouted fifty voices at once-*'* pull for the 
cable." 

The boy did so — we all ran forward. . He reached the cable — grasped 
H with both handstand hone on, but before he could swing himseu out of 
Che water, the fierce fish had turned* His whitish-green belly glanced in 
the sun — the poor little fellow gave 'a heart-splitting yell, which was shat- 
tered among the impending rocks into piercing echoes, and these again 
were reverberated from cavern to cavern, until they died away among the 
hollows in the distance, as if they had been the faint shrieks of the damned 



184 TOM ckivolb's log. 

— yet he held fast for a accond or two — the Tarenrnw tyrant of tfiesca 
tug, tugging at him, till the stiff, taut cable shook again. At len^ he 
was torn from his hold, but did not disappear ; the animal continuing on 
the surface cranching his prey with his teeth, and dig^g at him With his 
jaws, as if trying to gorge a morsel too large to be swallowed, and making 
the water flash up in foam over the boats in pursuit, by the powerful strokes 
of his tail, but without ever letting jo his hold. The ooor hid only cn«l 
once more — but such a cry — O God, 1 never shall forget it! — and, 
could it be possible, in his last shriek, bis piercing ejrotring cry, hisyoung 
voice seemed to pronounce my name — at least so 1 thought at the time, 
and others thought so too. The next moment he appeared quite dead. Wo 
less than three boats had been in the water alongside when the accident 
happened, and they were all on the spot by this time. And there was the 
bleeding and jangled boy, torn along the surface of the water by the shaw, 
with the boats in pursuit, leaving a long stream of blood, mottled with white 
specks of fkt and marrow in his wake. At length the man in the bow of 
the ^g laid hold of him by the arm, another sailor caught the other aim, 
boat-hooks and oars were dug into and launched at the monster, who relm- 
quished his prey at last, stripping off the flesh, however, from the upper part 
of the rigjit thigh, until his teeth reached the knee, where he nipped the 
shank clean off and made sail with the leg in his jaws. 

Poor little Louis never once moved after we took him in. —I thouait 1 
heard a small still stem voice thrill along my nerves, as- if an echo of the 
beating of my heart had become articulate. " Thomas, a fortnight ago 
you impressed that J)oor boy — who was, and noto is not — out of a Bristol 
ship.^* Alas ! conscience spoke ho more than the truth. 

Our instructions werCkto lie at St. Jago, until three British shipei, tiien 
loading, were ready for sea, and then to convov them through the Caicos, 
or windward passage. As our stay was therefwe likely to be ten days or 
a fortnight at the shortest, the boats were hoisted ont, and we made our little 
arrangements and preparations for taking all the recreation in our power ; 
and our worthy skipper, taut and stiff as he was at sea, always enconr- 
aged all kinds of fun and larking, both among the men and the ofiicers, on 
occasions like the present Among his other prleasant qualities, he was a 
great boat-racer, constantly builJing and altering gigs and pulling boats, 
at his own expense, and matching the men against each othq{' for small 
prizes. He had just finished what the old carpetoter considered his chef- 
^tnmre, and a curious affair this same masterpiece waK In the first place 
it was forty-two feet long over all, and only three and a half feet beam — 
. the planking was notmu^ above an eighth pf an inch in iMckness, so that 
if one of the crew had slipped his foot off the stretcher, it njust have gone 
through the bottom. There was a standing order that no man was to go 
into it with shoes on. She \yas to pull si^ oars, and her crew were the cap- 
tains of the tops, the primest seamen in' the ship, and the steersman no 
less a character than me skipper himself. 

Her name, for I love to lie particular, was the Dragonfly ; die 'was 
painted out and in of a bright red, amounting to a flame colour ^ oars red 
— the men wearing trousers and shirts of red flannel, and red net night- 
caps — which common uniform the captain himself wore. I think I have 
said before, that he was a very handsome man, but if I have not, I say so 
now, and when he had taken his seat, and the gigSj all fine men, were seat- 
ed, each with his oar held upright upon his knees ready to be dropped into, 
the water at the same instant, the craft and her crew formed to my eye as 
pretty a plaything fpr grown cluldren as ever was seen. " Give way, men," 
the oars dipped as clean as so many knives, without a sparkle, the gallant 
fellows stretched out, and away shot the Dragonfly^ nke an arrow, thfr 



TOM CEIITGLS'S LOG. 186 

green water foaming into white smoke at the bows, and hissing away in her 
Wake. i 

She disappeared in a twinkling round a reach of the canal where we 
were anchored, and we, the of&cers, for we must needs have our boat alio, 
were miLkin^ ready to be oS^ to have a shot at some beautiful cranes that, 
floating on their large pinions, slowly passed us with their long legs stuck 
straight out astern, and their longer necks gathered into their crops, when we 
heard alond shouting in the direction where the captain's boat had vanished. 
Presently the Devil's Darning Needle, as the Scotch part of the crew loved 
to call tne Dragonfly, stuck her long snout round the headland, and came 
spinning along, witbf a Spanish canoe manned by four negroes, and steered 
by an elderly sentleman, a sharp acute-looking little man, in a gingtiam 
coat, in her wake, also pulling very fast ; however, the Don seemed dead 
beat, and the captain was in great glee. By this time, both boats were 
alongside, and the old Spaniard, Don Ricardp Campana, addressed the cap- 
tain, judging that he was one of the seamen". '* Is the captain on board ?'* 
said he in Spanish. The captain, who understood the language, but did 
not speak it, answered him in French, which Don Ricardo seem^ to speak 
fluently. ** No, sir, the captain is not on board ; but there is Mr. Yerk, the 
first lieutenant, at the gangway.'* -He had come for the letter bag, he said, 
and if he had any newspapers, and could spare them, it would be conferring 
a great favour on him. 

tte got his letters and newspapers handed down, and very civilly gave 
the captain a dollar, who touched his cap, tipped the monev to the men, and 
winking slightly to old Yerk and the rest of us, addressed himself to shove 
off The old Don, drawing up his eyebrows a little, (I guest he rather saw 
who was who, for all his make-believe innocence,) bowed to the officers at 
the gangway, sat down, and desiring his people to use their broad-bladed, 
clumsy-Tooking oars, or paddles, began to move awkwardly away. We, 
that is the gunroom-officers, all except the second lieutenant, who had the 
watch, and the master, now got into our own gig also, rowed by ourselves, 
and away we all went in a covey ; the purser and doctor, and three of the 
middies forward, Thomas Cringle, gent, pulling the stroke-oar, with old 
Moses Yerk as coxswain ; — and as the Dragonflies were all red, so we 
were all sea-green, boat, oars, trousers, shirts, and nightcaps. We soon 
distanced the cnmbrous-looking Don, and the strain was between the Dev* 
iPs Darning ^eedSe and our boat, the Waterspritey which was making capi- 
tal play, for although we had not the bottom of the fopmen, yet we had more 
blood, 80 to speak, and we had already beaten them, in their last gig, all 
to sticks. ,But Dragonfly was a new boat, and now in the water for the 
first time. 

We were both of us so intent on our own match, that we lost sight of the 
Spaniard altogether, and the captain and the first lieutenant were bobbing 
in the stem-sheets of tHeir respective gigs like a couple of ^ou^^ Tarns, as 
intent on the game as if all our lives had depended on it, when in an instant 
the long black dirty prow of the canoe was tiirust in between us, the old Don 
singing out, '< Dexa mi lugar, paysanosj dexa mi lugar, mis hijosJ'** We 
kept away right and left, to look at the miracle ; — and there lay the canoe, 
rumbling ana splashing, with her crew wallopping about, and grinning and 
yelling like incarnate fiends, and as naked as the day they were bom, and 
the old Don himself, bo staid apd so sedate and drawley as he was a minute 
before, now all alive, shouting " Tirot dtdblitost lira .'"f flourishing a small 
paddle, with which he steered, about his head like a wheel, and danchig 
and iumping about in his seat, as if his bottom had been a haggis with 
^uicK-sifver in it 

* " L«av« me room, countrymen'- leave me room, my childroii.'* 
t E^ijIv^leDt to « Pull, yoa devili, pall i" 



IM roM cRUraLk's loo. 

** Zound^" roared the skipper, — ** why, topmen — why, gen^ittAtk, mve 
wa^ for the honour of the ehip — GentlemeD, streteh out — Men, pull hke 
devils ; twenty pounds if you beat him.'* 

We pulled, and they pulled, and the water roared, and the men strained 
th^ muscles and sinews to cracking ; and all was splash, splash, avUf^tDhiz, 
wkiz, and peek, pech^ about us, hut it wovld not do — the canoe headed us 
like a shot, and in passing, the eool old Don again subsided into a calm as 
suddenly as he had been roused from it, and sitting onqe more, stiff as a 
poker, turned round and touched his tombrerOf " I will tell that you are 
coming, gentlemen.'' 

It was now the evening, near nightfall, and we had been so intent on 
beating our awkward*Iookmg opponent, that we had none of ns time to look 
at the splendid scene that burst upon our view on rounding a precipitous 
rock, from the crevices of which some magnificent trees shot up — their 
gpaned trunks and twisted branches overhanging the canal where we 
were pulling, and anticipating the fast-falling darkness that was creeoing 
over the fair face of nature ; and there we floated, in the deep shadow or the 
cliff and trees — Dra^onflies and Watersprites, motionless and silent, the 
boats floating so lightly that they scarcely seemed to touch the water, the 
men resting on their oars, and all of us trap with the magnificence of the 
scenery around us, beneath us, and above us. . , . * 

The left or western bank of the narrow entrance to the harbour, from 
which we were now debouching, ran out in all its precipitoueness and 
beauty, (with its dark evergreen bushes overshadowing the deep blue wa- 
ters, and its gigantic trees shooting forth high into the glowing western 
sky, their topmost branches gold-tipped in the flood of radiance shed by the 
rapidly sinking sun, while all below where' we lay was gray cold shade,) 
until it joined the northern shore, when it sloped away gradually towards 
the east ; the higher parts of the town sparkled in the evening sun, on this 
dun ridge, like golden turrets on the back of an elephant, while the houses 
that were in the shade covered the declivity with their dark masses, until U 
sank down to the water's edge. On the right hand the haven opened boldly 
out into a basin about four miles broad by seven long, in which tlie placid 
waters spread out beyond the shadow of the western bank into one vast 
sheet of molten gold) with the canoe tearing along the shining surface, her 




as 

we pulled along under the frowning brow of the clifl^ where the birds were 
fast settling on their nightly perches, with small happy twitterings, and the 
lizards ana numberless other chirping things began to send forth their even- 
ing hymn to the great Being who made them and us, and a solitary white- 
sailing owl wonla every now and then flit spectrelike from one green tuft, 
across the bald face of the cliff, to another, and the small divers around us 
were breaking up ^e black, surface of the waters into little sparkling ci^ 
des as they fished for their suppers. All was becoming brown and indis- 
tinct near us ; but the level beams of the setting sun still lingered with a 
golden radiance upon the lovely city, and the shipping at anchor be- 
fore it, making their sails, where loosed to dr^', glance like leaves of gold, 
and tiieir spars and masts and rigging like wires of gold, and gilding their 
flags, which were waving majesticluy and slow from Uie peaks, m the even- 
ing breeze ; and the Moorish-looking steeples of the churches were yet 
sparkling in the glorious blaze, which was graduallv deepening into gor- 
esotts enmson, while the large pillars of the cathedral, then building on the 
highest part of the ridge, stood out like brazen monuments, softening even 
as we looked isfto a Stonehenge of amctfajst One half of every object, 
^pping, houses, trees, and failte, wa9 ^wiottly illuminated ; but even as 



ItOVL CftUTGLK's X«06. 187 

*We fooked, the lower part of the town gradually sank into darkness, and 
^fiided from our sight — the deepening gloom cast by the high bank above 
us, like the dark shadow of a bad spirit, gradually crept on, and on, and ex- 
tended farther and farther ; the Bailing water-fowl, in rojgular lines, no longer 
mad^^ water flash up like flamed ; the russet mantle of eve was fast extend- 
ing ^Sf the entire hemisphere ; the glancing minarets, and the tallest trees, 
and the t^pgallant-vards and masts of the snipping, alone flashed back the 
td^ing effulgence oi the glorious orb, which every moiment grew fainter and 
fainter, and redder and redder, until it shaded into purple, and the loud 
deep bell of the convent of La Merced swung ov^r the still waters announ- 
cing the axrival of even-song and the departure of day. 

" Had we not better pull back to supper, sir ?*» quoth Moses Yerk to the 
taptain. We all started, ithe men dipped their oars^ our dreams were dis- 
pelled, the charm was broken — " Confound the mattePof-fact blockhead," 
or something very like it, grumbled the captain :— ** but give way, men." 
fast followed, a^d we returned towards the ship. We had not piuled fifty 
yard?, when we heard the distant rattle of the muskets of the sentries at the 
gangways, as they discharged them at sundown, and were remarking, as 
We were rowing leisurely along, upon the strange effect produced by the 
Te^tts, as fhey were frittered away amon^he overhanging cliffs in chat* 
tering reverbettitions, when the captain suddenly sung out, *« Oars !" All 
hands lay o;i them. "Look there,'* he continued — "TWiere — between 
the gigs — saw you ever any thing like that, gentjemen?" We all leaned 
over ; and although the boats, froip tBc way theyjiad. Were skiraming along 
nearer seven than five knots — there lay a lar^e shark ; he must have been 
twelve feet long at the shortest, swimming right in the middle, and equidis- 
tant from both, and keeping wmf with us n^st accurately. 

He was distin^tlv visible, fi^m the ^Ai^ and vivid phosphorescence 
excited by his rapjd motioti through the meepmg waters of the dark creek, 
"whi^ch lit up his jaws, and head, and whole bojiy ; his eyes were especially 
luminous, while a long wake of sparkles streamed away astern of him 
from the lashing of his tail. As the boats lost their speed, the luminousnesi 
of hi^ appearance faded gradually as he shortened sail also, until he dis- 
appeared altogether. He' was then at rest, and suspended motionless in 
ttte water ; and the only thing that indicated his proximity, was an occa- 
sional sparkle from the motion of a fin. We brought the boats nearer to- 
gether, after pulling a stroke or two, but he seefned to sink as we dosed, 
until at last we could merely perceive an indistinct halo^far down in the 
clear dark profound. But as we Si^parated, aiid resumed our original posi- 
tion, he again rose near the su^ace ; and although the ripple and dip of the 
oars^ rendered him invisible whilte we were pulling, yet the moment we 
again rested on them, there was the monster, like a pers^ufing fiend, once 
more right between us, glaring on us, and apparently watching every mo- 
tion. It was a terrible spectacle, and rendered still more Striking by the 
melancholy occurrence of the forenoon. 

<' That's the very identical, damnable haste himself, as murthered poor 
little Louis this mornih^, yeer honour ; I knows him from the torn flesh of 
him under hia larboard blinlter, sir —just where Wiggen's hoat-hook pun- 
ished him," quQth th& Irish captain of'^^the mizcntop. 

<< A water-kelpie," murmured another of the captain's gigs, a Scotch- 

paeg; . > 

The men were evidently alarmed. << Stretch out, men : never mind the 
shark. He can't jump into the boat, surely," said the skipper. ^^ What 
the deuce are you afraid of?". ^ 

We arrived within pistol-shot of the ship. As we approached, the sentgr 
luuled, *' Boat, ahoy P' 

'** Firebrand," sang out the skipper, in reply. * 



186 Tov osuroLx's ij>q: 

» 

. '^Mtfi the ader^gjHiigirfty Itiitems there," qjuifli the cAeer on dutY} 

and by the time we were close to, there were two sideamen over the Me 
with the mambpes ready etuck out to oar grup, and two bojs with lan- 
terns above them. We sot on deck, the officen touching their hats, and 
speedily the captain dived down the ladder, saying, as he descended, ''^Mx. 
Yeik, 1 shall be happy to see you and your Iwars-crew at sijq^r, or 
rather to a late dinner, at eight o*cIock ; but come down a moment as yon 
are. Tailtackle, bring the gigs int.o the cabin to get a glass of grog, wi& 
you?" 

<<Ay, ay, sir," responded Timothy. "Down with yon^ yon flaming 
tiueves, and see yon aon*t snort and sniffle in your grog, as if you were m 
your own mess, like so many pigs slushing at thasa^me trough." 

<< hotd love yoQ,^ Tim," rejoined one m the' topmen,, " who made yon 
master of .the ceremonies, old Ironfist, eh ? Where learnt you yo«r breed- 
ing? Among the cockatoos up yonder ?" 

Tim laughed, who^ although he ought to have been in his bed, had takes 
his seat in the thragonfly when her crew were piped over tbe side in the 
evening, and thereby subjected himself to a rap ovei; the knuckles from the 
captain ; but where the onence might be said to consist in a too assiduoiis 
discharge of hi^ duty, it was easily forgiven, unfortunate as tKe issue of the 
race had been. So down we aU trujkd&d into the cabin, masters and meiw 
It was brilliantly Ughted up — the table sparkling with crystal and vvineL 
and ^ancing with silver plate ^. and there on a sofa lay Aaron Bang in au 
his pristine beauty, and fresh from Jbue toilet, for he had just ^ot out of his 
cot after an eight-and-forty bowrs' ss^ufn therein — nice white neckcloth 
— white jean waiscoat and trousers, and span-new blue coat. He ^was 
reading when we entered ; and the captain, in his flame-coloured.costome^ 
waa close aboard of him beforelhe'raised his eyes, and rather staggered hiss 
a bit ; but when seven sea-greedfrpirits followed, he was exceedingly non- 
plussed, and then came the six red EfragoDQies, who ranged UiemselVes 
three on each side of the door, with their net-bags in their hands, smootb- 
mg down their hair, and sidling and fidgeting about at finding themselves 
80 far out of their element as the ^abin. ' 

'* Mafame," said the captain, <' a glass of grog a piece to the Dragon- 
flies " — and a tumbler of liquid amoer (to borrow from my old fhend 
Cooper) sparkled in the large bony claw of each of theni. ^ Now, drink 
Mc Bang's health." They, as in duty bound, let fly at our omigQ ina 
volley. 
' « Your health, Mr. JBang." 

Aaron sprung from his seat, and made his salaam, and'^ Dragdnflies 
bimdled out of the cabin again. 

"I say, Transom, John Canoang still ? — always some frolic in the 
wind." * . 

We, the Watersprites, had shifted and rigged, and were all mustered aft 
on the poop, enjoying the litde air there. was, as it fanned ns gently, iCnd 
waiting for Uie announcement of supper. It was a pitch-diirk nig^ neither 
moon nor stars. The murky douos seemed to have settled dowti on the 
mast-heads, shrouding eyery object in ^e thickestgloote. ' 

« Ready with the gun forwani there, Mr. Catwell?" said Yak. 

"All ridy, sir." 

"Fire!" 

Pent up a^ we were in a naoow channel, walled in on each side with 
lowing precipitous rocks, the explosion, multiplied by the eehoes ittto« 
whole broadsidb, was tremendous, and absolutely deafening. 

The cold, g^y, threateniag rocks, and 'the large over-nang^g twisted 
branches of the trees, and the clear black water, and the white Moro in 
the distance, g^ced for an in«t«iit« add th^. all was f^gain veiled in utter 



daikness, and down came a rattlins sbower of aaad and stones tmea the 
dtft, and of rotten branches, and heavy dew from the tiees, sparkling in 
the water like- a shower of diamonds ; and the birds of the air screamcid, 
and, fri^tened from their nests and perches in crevices, and on the boa<Hi8 
of the trees, took flight with a strong rushing noise, that put one in minJTof 
the riaii^ of the fallen angels from the infernal conncil in Pkmdise Lost ; 
and the cattle on the mountain-side lowed, and the fish, large and small, 
like darts and arrows of fire, spafkled up from the black abyss of waters, 
and swam in haloes of fl^me round the ship in every direction, as if they 
had been the ghosts of a shipwrecked crew, haunting the sfene of their 
destruction ; and the gu&Uas and large lizards which had been shaken fiom 
the trees, skimmed and struggled on the surface in glances of fire, like evil 
spirits watching to seize them as their prey. At len^ the screaming and 
simeking of the birds, the elans of their wings, and the bellowing of the 
cattle, ceased ; and the startled fish subsided slowly down into the oozy 
caverns of the siSa, and, becoming motionless,' disappeared ; and all was 
agilin black and undistinguishable, the deathlike silence being only broken 
by thfi-hoarse murmuring of the distant suif. 

'* Magnificent !" burst from (he captain. *' Messenger, send Mr. VoiU 
fire here.^* . The gunpowder functionary, he of the flannel cartridge, ap- 
peared. « Qiwner, send one eC year mates into the maintop, and let him 
bum a blue light.'* 

The lund glare blaied u|kbftl«foUy Bmmg the mrs and ngSW, light- 
iagup the deekia^ and blastii|g the orew into .the fikeaess oiSieliost of 
Sennacherib, when the day broke on khemi and thev were all dead corpses* 
Astern pf mm, indistinct from the distant^ the white Mere Castle reap- 
peinred, and rose frowning, tier above tier» like a Tower of Babel, with its 
SQoiD^t veiled in the, clouds, and the startled 8ea*>fowl wbeelinn above the 
higher batteries^ like snow-flakes bloiwn about in a storm ; while, near at 
hand, the ibcks on each side of us looked as if firesh splintered asunder, 
withthe 8ulphiHe<nis flames which had spUt them still burning; -the trees 
looked np loiter green, but were sicklied o*er with a pale ashy colour, as 
if sheeted ghost»were holding their midnight orgies among their branches 
-^cranes, and waterfowl, and birds of many kinds, and aHthe insect and 
raptile tribes^ their gaudy noontide colours merged' into one and the same 
fearful dea^like sameness, flitted and sailed and circled above us, and 
clMtteied, emd saeamed, and shrieked ; and the unearthly-looking gUanai^ 
aad nuoribeiless crseiung things, n^n out oi^ the bou^ to peer at us, and . 
a large snake twined itself up a scathed stump that shot out from a shatk 
tared pinnacle of rock that overhung us, with its glossy skin, glancing like 
the braaen serpent set up by Moses in the camp of the IsrHdites ; and the 
cattle on the beetling summit of the clifi'craned ever the preoifatqus ledge, to 
look down upon us ; and while eYenthing aronoj ^ ™ ftbovc us was thus 
^Mtong in tne blue and ghastly lacnanc^, the band struck up a low moan- . 
jug ab ; the light burned out, and once more we were cast, by the contrast 
into even move pa^ble darkness than before. I was entraneed,~and stood 
with folded arras, looking fortb into' the niaht, and musing intensely on the 
appalling scene which had juflt vanished aLe a feireriah cufeam— *' Pinner 
waits, sir," quoth Mafame^ / 

'''Oh { I am coming ;" and kicking all my romanoe to Old Nick, I de- 
BCAoded, and we bfltd a pleasant night of it, and some vrine and some fUn, 
•nd there ao end-^but I htm ot&n dreamed of that dark pool« and th6 
MMMt I witnessed that day and night. 



liO MM CRnroLs'i Loa. 



CHAPTER XIIL 

TnEPIRATB*8 LBMAN. 

« When hrrely woaiaa stoopi to fbllf , 
Aod finds too late that men betray, 
What charms can soothe her melancholyy 
' What art can wash her guilt away 

** Tha onlr art her guilt can cover, 
To hide her shame from eTary eye, 
To give repentance to Uar lover, 
And wring hv bosom, is to die.>* 

Vicar or Waxbfuui. 

^ Jiy Dioa, at $ern possible que he ya haUado htgar que jmeda servir de etcon* 
Mda sepulHara a la curga pesada dette cuerpo, que tan contra mi vobaUad w#- 
tengoV* 

DoK Quixote db z.a Makcba. 

Tv next morniiig after breakftst I proceeded to Santiago, Anfi landed 
at the eustom-hoase wharf, where I round erery thing basue, dndt, and 
heat : several of the'captains of the English vessels were there, who imme- 
diately made up to me, and repprted how far advanced in their lading they 
were, and inquired when we were to give theitn convoy, the latest news 
from Kingston, &c At^len^h I saw oui: friend Rieaido Campana going 
atong one of the neighbounn^ streets, and I immediately made sail in 
chase. He at once recognizea me, gave me a cordial sluKe of the iiand, 
and inquired how he could serve me. I produced two lefters which F had 
brought for him, but which had been forgotten in the hustle of the pneceding 
day ; they were intvoductory, and although sealed, I had some reason to- 
conjecture that my friend, Mr. Pepperpot Wagtail, had done me much 
more than justice. Cami>an8, with ^reat kindness, immediately invited in0 
to his house. '*We foreigners," said he, " donH keep your tiours ; I -am 
just going hooM to breakiMt" It was past eleven in the forenoon. I was 
about excusing myself on the plea of having already breakfasted, when he 
silenced me. '^Whyl guessed as much. Air. Lieutenant, but then you 
have not lunched ; so you can call it lunch, you know, if it will ease ytm 
conscience.** There was no saying nay to all this civility, so we stumped 
along the burning streets, through a mile of houses, l&rg^ massive bmld- 
ings, but very dinerent in ^externals from the gay domiciles of KingntOD. 
Aaron Bang afterwards used to say that they look.ed more like prisons than 
dwellinff-houses, and he was not m this very much out. Most of them 
were built of brick and plastered .over, with large windows, in front of each 
of which, like the houses in the south of Spain, there was erected a large 
heavy wooden balobny, mojecting far enough from the wall to allow a 
Spanish chair, such as I have already described, to be placed in it« The 
front of these verandahs was closed m with a row of heavy balustrades at 
the bottom, of a variety of shapes, and by clumsy carved woodwork above, 
which efiectnally prevented you from seeing into the interior. The whole 
had a Moorish air, and in the upper part ofthe town there was a SafabaUK 
like stillness pirevailing, which was only broken now and then by the tinkle 
of a guitar from one <m the aforesaid verandahs, or by the ratUing of a cnmr 
volante^ a sort of covered sig, drkwn by a broken-kneed and broken-wiiMK 
ed mule, with a kUn-diied ^ Spaniaro or donna in it 



* 

Tbeloirar ftat of tk»to9«a had been bwy enou^ and the rtir and fanm 
ifBdered the qtnet of the upper part of it more striking. 

A ihoveMMitted friar now suddenly accosted vs. 

•• Smor CmKpana-^ e*e pobrefamUia de CangrejS ! LasHtna ! Laatima /" 

" Cangrej^-^ Gangnj9 /" mattered 1 j " why, it is the very name attached 
te the miniatura'* 

Campana turned to the priest, and they conversed^eamestly together Tor 
some moments, when he left him, and we again held on our way. I couM 
not help asking him what family that was, whose sitaation the **padre^ 
seemeid so feelingly to bemoan* 

" Never mind,'' said he, *' never mind ; they were a proud family once^ 
bat that is all over now — comef along." 

« But,*' said I, " I have a very peculiar cause of interest with regard to 
this faimly. Vou are aware, of course, tyf the trial ttnd execution of the 

Sirates at Kingston, the most conspicuous of whom was a young man called 
'edeiieo Oan^eioy from whom " 

** Mr. Crni^,** said he^ solemaly, «at a fitting time I will hear you re- 
garding that matter ; at present I entreat you wiU not preset it.'' 

C^OfS. manners would not allow me to posh it farther^ and we trudged 
alotig together, nntU we arrived at Don Ricafdo Campana's door. It was 
a large brick fcjiiilding, ptasterad over as already desenbed, and whitewash- 
edL Tbeise was a projeetiaff stair in front, with a flight of steps to the right 
and left, wi^ a parapet Wall towards the street There were two hirse wm- 
dows, with the woocwn verandah or liittice already described, on toe first 
floor, and on the second a range of smaller windows, of the same kind. 
What answered to our gronnd floor was used as a warehouse, and filled 
with dry goods, sugar, cofiee, hid^s, abd a vast variety of kniscellaneoua 
articles. We ascended the stairs, and entered a lof^y room, cool and dark, 
and paved with large diamond-shaped bricks, and every way desirable for 
a "West India lounge, all to the furniture, which was meager enough ; tiiree 
or four chairs, A woim-eaten old leathern sofa, and a large clumsy hard- 
wood table in the midst. ^ r 

'There were several children playing at>out, little sallow devils, although, 
I ^re say, they could all of them have been furnished with certificates of 
white parentage, upon whom one or tvro nesro women were hovering in^ 
attendance beyond a large folding door that Wonted the entrance. 

When we entered, thS eldest of the children, a little girl of about eight 
years old, was sitting iii the doorway, playing with a small blue toy that I 
could make nothing of, until on a^ nearer inspection f found it to be a live 
laad^orab, which the little lady bad manacled with a thread by the foot, the 
thread beitt^ fastened to a nail driven into a seam of the floor. 

As'an article of food, { was already familiar Vith this creature, but I had 
never seen a hving one before ; it was in 'every respect like a sea>crab, only 
smaller, the body being at the widest not abovje three inches across the 
baek. It fed without any apparent fear, and while it pattered over the tiled 
floor, with its hard claws, it would now and then stop and seize a crumb of 
bread in its forceps, and feed itself like a little monkey. By the time I had 
exchanged a few words with the little lady, the large door that opened into 
ihe hall en the fisht hand moved, and mine hostess made her appearance ; 
a amall woman dressed in a black gown, very laxly fitted. Stie was the 
vety converse of o«r old ship, she never- missed slays, although I did cruelly. 

.•*ThiB is my friend, Lieutenant Cringle," said my host. 

**A laS'pi^sde ustedy senora,** responded your humble servant 

'* I am very glad to see you," said the lady ; ^ but breakfadt is ready ; 
wekioaie, sir, w^eAeomt,'* 

The food was> not amiss, the cofibe decidedly good, and the chocolate, 
wteoD, it you had ^iMited a tea-spoon, i^ would have stood upri^t, was 
7* 



19A TOM OftUrOLB^ £#«« 



excelient Whmi.we had done with subsUntmli, duke, thai is tin fnut of 
the siuiya preserved, in small wooden boxes, (tike drums of figs,) after being 
made into a kind of jam, was placed on the table, and mine host and his 

Souse had eaten a bushd of it a piece, and drank a gallon <}f that most hea- 
enish beverage, cold clear water, before the repast was considered ended. 
After a hearty meal and a pint of claret, I felt rather inclined to sit still, and 
expatiate for an hour or so, but Gampana roused me, and asked whether or 
not I felt inclined to go And look at the town. I had no apology, and 
although I would much rather have sat still,! rose to accompany him, when 
in walked Captain Transom and Mr. Bang. They were also kindly re* 
ceived by Don Ricardp^ 

(< Glaa of the honour of this visit," said he in French, with a ali|^t Uft af 
the comer of his mouth : *' i hope neither ym nor your boat** crew took 
any harm after the h$Mt of yesterday. 

Transom laughed. 

« Why, vou aid beat us very neatly, Don Ricardo. Pray, where got yon 
that canoe f But a lady »Mn. Campana, I presume? -^ Have the good- 
ness to introdace me." 

The skipper was presented in due form, the lady receiving him vrithout 
the least numvaise honte, which after all, I believe to be indigenous to our 
island. Aaron was next introduced, who, as he spoke no lingo, m I kmwt 
of, to borrow Timotheus Tailtackle's phraseology, but Englisn, was nther 
posed in the interview. 

^ I say, Tom, tell her I wish she may live a thousand years. Ah, so^ 
that will do.** 

Madame made her eongi, and hoped *< £1 smor lommia im sftfnla. 

"Mucho, mvcAo," sung out Bang, who meant by that that he was nmek 
obliged. 

At length Don Ricardo came to our eid. -He had arranged a^ party into 
the country for next morning, and invited us all to come back to a tertuKa 
in the evening, and to take peds in his house, he under)aking >to provide 
heiiias to carry us. 

We therefore strolled out, a g;o6d deal piozled what to make of ourselves 
until the evening, when we f^l in with one of the captains of the En^itk 
ships then loading, who told us that there was a sort of hotel a little way 
down the street, where we might dine at two o'clock at the table <PlufU. It 
was as yet only twelve, so we stumbled into this sMd hotel to reconnoitre, 
and a sorry amur it was. The public room was fitted with rough wooHen 
tables, at which Spaniards, Americans, and Englishmen, sat and smoked, 
and drank sangaree, hot punch, or cold grog, as best .suited them, and o 



mitted a vast variety of miscfiUaneous abominations durioe their poti^tioiis. 
We were about gjiving. up all thoughts of. the place, and had tuibed to gorto 
tiie door, when in popped our mend Don Ricardo. ~ He saw we were 
somewhat abroad. 

" Gentlemen," said he, << if I may ask, have yen any engagement (e 
dinner?" 
''No, we have none. ^ 

" Well, then, will you do me the honour of partaking of my hauir hit 
at three o'clock 7 I did not venture to invite you before, becauso I knew 
you had other, letters to deliver, and I wished to leave you masters of your 
own time." We gladly accepted his kind offer ; he had made his bow^ and 
was cruising among the smokers, and punch-drinkers, where the Uue- 
coated masten of the English merchantmen and American skippers were 
hobbimi and nobbing with the giosham-coated Dons, for the whcae Spanish 
part dfthe community were figged out in Glasgpw and Paisley ^ghaias ; 
when the priest, who had attracted 'our attention in the mormng, came qp 
to him, and drew him aside. They talked earnestly togellieri the ^erigo^ 



tou GMiraxift's loa* IflB 

•very now and then indicating bynigaificaDt noda and |{lanca8 toitaida va, 
ttiat we formed the burden ofma song, whatever, that might be. Canpana 
aeemed exceedingly unwilling to communicate, the message, which we 
gaessed he had been entreated to carry us, and made one or two attempta 
to shove the friar in propria persona towards us, that h<} might himself tell 
his own story. At len^ they advanced together to where we stood, whea ' 
, he addressed me. 

** Tou must pardon me, Lieutenant ; but as the proverb hath it, * strange 
countries, strange manners ;* my friend here, Padre Oareia, brings a mes* 
sage from El Senor Picador Gangrejo, one of our magnateis, that he will 
consider it an especial favour if you will call pn him, either- this Ibreiiooa 
or to-morrow." 

** Why, toAo U this Cans^rejo, Don Ricardo ? if he be not the father to 
the poor f^^llow I nientioned, there must be some mystery about him." 

** No mystery," chimed in^the monk ; *< no mystery, God help us, Iml 
mucha, mncha miserioj hijo mio ; much misery^ sir, ,and more impending, 

and none to help, save only '' He did not finish the sentence, but 

taking off his shovel-hat, and showing his finely turned bald head, he looked 
op tolieaven, and crossed himself) the tears trickling down his wrinkled 
cheeks. " But," continued he, " you will come, Mr. Cringle ?" 

" Certainly," said I, " to*raorrow I will call, if my friend Don Ricardo 
will be my guide.'^ This bein^ fixed, we strolled about until dinner-time, 
friend Aaron making his remarks regarding the people and their domicilefl 
with great ncAveti. 

** Strange now, Tom, I had expected to see little else among the slave 
population here than misery and starvation ; whereas, so far as I can ob- 
serve, they ate all deucedly well-oared for, and fat, and contented ; and 
from the inquiries I was making among the captains of the merchantmen" 

('^ Maalers,** kiterjected Captain Transom, *^ Master of a meibhant> 

man, Capudn of a man-of-war.") *' Well, captains of merchantmen, — 
masters, — I find that the people whom they employ are generally free ; 
and, farther, that the slaves are not more than three to one free person ; yet 
tiiey export a great deal of produce. Captain Transom — must keep my 
eyes about me.** And so he did, as will be seen by and by. But the £n- 
ner hour drew near, and we repaired to Don Ricardo's, where we found a 
party of eight assembled, and our appearance was the signal for the repast 
Dein^ ordered in. It was laid out in the entrance-hall. The table was of 
massive mahogany, the chairs of the same material, with stuffed bottoms, 
covered with a din^y-coloured morocco, which might have been red • 
once. But devil a dish of any kind was on the snow-white table-cloth 
when we sat down, and our .situations, or the places we were expected to - 
fid at the board,«w^te only indicated by a large,knife and silver fork and 
spoon laid 'down for each person. The compfmy consisted of Don Ri- 
cardo Campana, la Senora Campana, and a brother of hers, two daik 
young men, who, were t>Qn Ricardo^s clerks^ and three youn^ women^ 
ladies, or senonUf as I ought to have called them, who were sitting so far 
back into the shade, at the dark end of the room, when we entered, that 
I could not tbW what they were. Our hostess was, although a Httle 
woman, a good-looking dark Spaniard, not very polished, hut very kind ; 
and seeing that our friend Aaron was the most helpless among us, she took 
him under her especial care, and made many a civn speech to him, althou^ 
her husbaiid did not fail to advertise her, that he understood not one word 
of Spanish, that is, of all she was saying to him. Howevec, be replied to 
her kindnesses by his never-failing exclamation of ^ mucho, mueAo," and 
they appeared to be getting on extremely well. *^ pring dinner," quoth Don 
Rh»rao, " trae la ctrniids;" and four black female domestitiS entered, the 



fint witk ft luso ^h of pilkfi^, or fowla smothered ia lice and onioaB f 
the aeccMid with a nondescript melange, flesh, fish, and fowl apparentlj, 
■trongl J f)avo«red with ^rlic ; the Uiird bore a dish of jerked beef, cut 
into rang shreds, and swimming in seha or lard ; and the iburth bore a 
lar^e dish full of that indescribable thing known by those who read Doo 
Gtoizoto, as an oOn podrida. The sable 'handmaidens began to circalate 
round the table, ana every .one helped himself to the di^h that he most fan- 
cied. At length they placed them on the board, and brought massive silver 
■ahieis, with snow>wmte bread, twisted into strands in the baking like 
jtiiiks of a table ; and water jars, and yams nicely roasted and wrapped 
in pisiatain leaves. These were itf like manner handed round, and thea 
deposited on the table, and the doqaestica vanished. 

We alt g^ on cheerily enough, and both the captain and myself were 
finishing ofT with the oUa podrida^ with which, it so happened, we wore 
ftmiliar, and friend Bang, taking the time from us, took heart of grace, and 
straightway followed our example. There was a pause — rather an iik- 
some one ftom its continuance, so much so indeed, that knocking off finons 
my more immediate business of gorging the aforesaid oUapodrida^ I looked 
upland as it so happened, by accident, towards our fHend Bang — and 
there he was, munching and screwing, up his energies to swallow a large 
mouthful of the ihixture, against which his stomach appeared to rebels 
*< Smollett's feast after the manner, of the ancients," wjiispered Transom* 
At Ibngth he made a vigorous e^rt, and straightway sung out — ''X'mu 
de vi«, Don Ricardibus — some brandy, mon pmi — for the love of all th& 
respectable saints in your heathenish calendar." 

Mine host laughed, but the females were most confoundedly posed The 
yoonger ones ran for aromatic salts, while the lad^ of the house fetched 
some very peculiar distilled waters. She,^ in her kmdness, filled a glass 
and helped Ban^, bat the instant, he perceived the flavour, he thrust it away. 

Anniseed — dmnn anniseed — no, no — obliged — miusAo, mucho — 
but brandy jDJoIno, ttiat is simple of itself, if you please — that's it — Lord 
lore you, my dearmadam— may you live a thousand years though." 

The pure brandy was administered, and once more the dark Deautie» 
reappeared, the first carrying a bottle of vin-d&>grave, the second one of 
vinofcinto, or claret, and the third one of Veau de vUy lor Aaron's peculiar 
use. These .were placed before the landlord^ who helped himself to half 
a pint of claret, which he poured into a larie tumhler, and then putting a 
drop or two of water into it, tasted it, and sent ii to his wife. ' In fike 
manner, he gave a smaller ^uaritity to each ,of the other senbrasy when 
the whole female part of the mmilv drank pfir healths in a vollev. But 
all this time the devil a thing drinkable was there befpre we males, but 
goblets of pore cold water. Bang's ^* mucho, mucho '^ even failed lm% 
for he had 4)illy in his ny$desty got ;a thimbleful of brandy to' — '''- 




the dUa podrida. However, in a twinkling a beautiful Ipn^-necked bottle 
of claret was planted at each of oqr right hands, and ofcourse we lost 
ne time in letuniing the tml'ooked-fbr civility of the ladies^ Until this 
moment I had not got a proper glimpse of the three Virgins of the Sun, 
who were seated at table with •*«. They were very pretty Moorish-look- 
ing ^s, as like as peas, dark hair, black eyis, clear colourless olive com- 
pliaon, aofd no stays ; bat young and elastic as their fibres were, this- 
was no disadvantage. They w>ere all three dressed in black silk net^coats, 
over a sort off cambrfe chemise, with large frills hanging down at the bosom^ 
but gown, properly so called, they had none, their arms being unencum- 
berea with any clothing heavier than a shoulder-strap.. The eldest was & 
fiae full young woman of about nineteen ; the second was more tall and, 
slaitely, but Sightor; and tiie youngest was — 06, she was an angel 



TOM CBIHOLB's I4>0« 19d 

of hgJBA — such hftir^ such ^yes, and stteh a month; thsa lier nock and 
boeom — 

" Oh, my Norah'f gown for me, 
To riie and fall as nature pleaaes," 

when the wearer is, as in the present case she was, yoaog and beautiful. 
They all wore a long plain white gauze strap, like a brotS ribbon, (little 
Reefpoint afterwards said they wore boat pennants at their mast-heads,) I 
don*t know what Madi^m Maradon Carson would call it^ in their hair, 
which felt down from amon^ the braids nearly to their heels, and then 
the^ replied in their magnificent language, when d^ually addressed 
dnnng dinner, with so much nmoeti. We, the males of the party, had 
drank little or nothin^^ a bottle of claret or so a*piece, and a dram of 
brandy, to qualify a little yin-de-graye that we had flirted with during din- 
ner, when our landlord rose, alon^ with his brother-in-law, wished us a 
good afternoon, and departed to lus counting-house, saying he would be 
back by dark, leaying the captain and I, ana friend Bang, to amuse the 
ladies the best way we couJd, as the clerks had taken wing along with 
their master. Don Ricardo*s departure seemed to be the signal for all 
hands breaking loose, and a regular romping match took place, the girls 
producing their guitars, and we were ail mi^ty frolicsome and happy, 
when a couple of padres from the convent of La Merced, in their white 
flannel »>wn8, black girdles, and shay^ crowns, suddenly entered the 
hali We, the forei^ part of titie society, calculated on being pulled up 
by the clerigos ; but deuce a bit— on the contrary, the youngfemales clus- 
tered round them, laughing and joking, while the Senora Uampana pre- 
sented them with goblets of claret^ in which they drank our hetuths, imce 
and again, and before long they were gamboling about, all shayen and 
shorn, like a couple of three-year-olds. Bang baa a large share of thetr 
assidulty, and to see him waltzing with a fine actiye, and what I fancy to 
be a ranty, a clean-looking priest, with his ever recurring " mucho, itmckn^* 
was rather entertaining. 

The director of the poet-office, and a man who was called the ** Corrtr' 
^4frr de Tahaco^^ literally the ^ corrector of tobacco," dropped in about this 
tune^ and one or two laclies, relatiyes of Mrs. Campana, and Don Ricar&i 
returning soon after, we had sweetmeats and liqueurs, and cofiee, and choc- 
olate, and a game at monte, and maco, and wiire, in fact, yery happy. 
But Uie happiest day, as well as Che most miserable, must haye an end, and 
the merry party dropped off, one after another, until we were left all alone 
with our no'st^s family. Madama soon after took her departure, wishing us . 
& gbod-ni^ht. She had no sooner gone, than Bang began to shoot out his 
horns a bit '* 1 say, Tom, ask the Don to let us haye a drop of something 
hot, will you, a tumbler of hot 'brandy and water afler-the waltzing, eh? 
I doaH see the bedroom candles yet'* Nor would he, if we had sat there 
tiU doomsday. Campana seemed to haye understood Bang, the brandy 
Was immediately forthcoming, and we drew in to the table to fenjoy ourselyes, 
Bang waxing talkatiye. ** Wow what odd names, — why, what a strange 
office it must be for his majesty of Spain to employ at eyery port a corrector 
oft(^ace0; that his liege subjects may not be imposed on, I suppose — what 
capital dgars this same corrector must haye, eh ?*» . 

1 suppose it is scarcely necessary tp mention, that throughout -^11 the 
Spanish American possessions, to^co is a royal monopmy, and that 
the officer above alluded to is the functionary who has the management 
pf it Don Ricardo, hearing something about cigars, took the hint, and 
immediately produped a straw case from his pocket, and handed it to 
**ng. 

** J^uchOf mveho/* quoth Bang ; ** capital, real Hayana.** 



199 TOM ctnrcnueV lO*. 

1^ now. sinee w« had til gotfen fUrly into ftub ^bttds, tft^ie w«c no fl^-» 
Jug how long we should have remained in the aeventh heaven — tonA 
would have depended upon the oonturaan^of the supply of brandy — but 
two female slaves presently made their appearance^ each carryins a qutfrt. 
1 believe I have already described this easily rigged couch somen^re ; iti% 
a hard- wood frame, like what supports the loose top of a laundry tabt% 
with canvass stretched over the top of it, but in such a manner that it can 
be folded up flat, and laid against the wall when not in use, while a bed 
can be immediately constructed by simply opening it and stretching the 
canvass. The handmaidens accordingly set to worn to arrange two bed^ 
or ^uatrMt one on each side of the tab£ where we were sitting, while Bang, 
sat eyeing them askance, in a kind of wonderment as to the object of th& 
preparations, which were by no means new either to the captain or me, 
who, looking on them as matters of course, continued in close confabulation 
with Don Ricardo during the operations. . 

** 1 say, Tom,*' at length quoth Bang, " are you to be laid out on one or 
these outlandish pieces of machinery — eh ?* 

** Why, I suppose so ; and comfortable enough beds they are, I can assum 
you." , 

« Don't fkncy them mucb| however," said Bang ; ^ rather flimsy the 
framework*'* 

The servants now v^ unceremoniously, no leave asked, be^ui to clear 
away all the {passes aiid tumblers on the table. 

*< Hillo r' said the skipper, casting an inquiring glance at Campana, wbdu 
liQwever, did not return it, but, as a matter of course apparently, rose, ana 
taking a chair to the other end of the iroom. close by the door ol an. apart- 
ment which opened from it, began in cold blood to unlace and disburden 
himself of all his appeal, even unto his shirt 

This surprised us all a good deal, but our wonderment wiis lost on the 
Don, who ^t up from his seat, and in his linen garment,^ which was deu- 
«edly laconic, made his formal bow, wished us good-night,' and presentins 
tiie reverse of h» medal, which was extremely picturesque, he vanishea 
through the door. By this, the ebony ladies had deared the table of the 
crystal, and had capped it with a yellow leather mattress^ with pillows of 
the same, both embossed with large f ufts of red silk ; on this they^ placed 
one sheet, and leaving a silver apparatus i^t the head, they disappeared — 
" Suenoi nochu tenures -r- Uu eaauu estan littas.^ 

Bang had been unable to speak from exjpess of astonishment ; but tfao 
skipper and If finding there was nb help for it, had followed Campana's ex- 
ample, and kept pace with him in our peding, so that by the time he disap- 
peared, we were ready to topple into our qitSrts, which we accordii^ly did» 




end of a ci«r in the comer of his cheek. 

" Now^ Bping," said Transom, '< turn in, and let us have a snooze, wUl 
ye?" 

Bang did not seem to like it much. 

" Zounds, Transom, did you ever hear of a gentle^nan beinjg mit to bed 
on a table? Why, it must be a quiz^ Only fancy me dished out and 
served up like a great calipi in the shell ! However, here goes — But surely 
this is in sorry taste; we had our chocolate a couple of hours ago — 
capital it was by the by — in vulgar Staffordshire china, and now they give 
US silver'' " 

•< Be decent, Bang," cut in the skipper, who was by this time move thaa 
half asleep. ^ Be decan^ a^ goto bed — that's a good fellow." 

*< Ah, well "-> Aaron undressed himself and lay down ; and there h% 



I 



WM laid onV with a candle 09 each aide of hia heail, hm 1^ faee anifMiantiad 
by a redder handkerchief tied round hts head, sticking out above the white 
sheet ; »Tid supported by Captain Tfansotn a,Qd mfstl^ one on each side. 
All was now quiet. I got up and pat out the candlj^s, aod as 1 fell asleep, 
I (XMild hear Aaron laughing to himself -<<.- <* Dished, simI served up> denied 
fike. Saint Barts. I was intended for a doctor, Tooa, jroa must know. I 
hepe the Don if not a medical ai^ateur ; I trust he woo't have a touch 
at me before morning. Rum subjict I should make. Possibly he way 
want tQ practise cutting for the stone — he ! be !'* All was silent for some 
time. 

c Hillo -*- what is that 7'* said Aaron agii% as tf suddenly aroused from 
his slumbers -^ << I say, none of your fun, TransQin.'' 

A large bat was Jkjfmg about^ and I oonld hear him occasieaaUy wkk 
near our faces. 

** Oh, a bat'-'hate bats<— how the skipper snores! I hope there be no 
lesurrection-men in St^ Jago, or I shall be stolen away to a certainty he£oge 
looming. How should I look as a skeleton in a gUss-case, eh ?>' 

I heard no more, until, it mi<(ht be, about midnight, when I was awakened, 
and frightened out of my wits, by Bang rollmg off the table on to my 

rre, which he broke in hi^fall, and then we both rolled over and over on 
floor. 
*< Murder !" roared Bang. " I am bewitched and bedevilled. Murdeir ! 
a scorpion hae drepped from the roof into my mouth, and jstung me on the 
nose. Murder I Tom — Tom Cringle — Captain- Transom, my dear 
l«lloW6y awake, and. send for the doctor. Oh, my wig — oh dear ^ oh 

At this uproar 1 9ould hear Don Eicardo striking a lisht, and presently 
he appeared witii a candle in his hand, more than half naked, with la senoia 
peering' throng the half-opened door beliind him. 

"•dii« Jiiaria purisMma — ^yitb&i is the matter? Where is«Z Stnor 
Bmgr . 

*^MnekOf mtidbo," shouted Bang from below the table. << Send for a 
doctoribus, Senor Richardum. I am dead and toother thing — help I «- 
Wp!» 

" Diios guardo u^d,*^ again eiaculated Campana. " WktU ha$ befalloa 
him ?" a4are88in|^the skipper, who was by this time on his head's antipodes 
is bed, rubbing h)s eyes, and in great amazement 

^ Tell him, my dear Transom, that a, scorpion fell from the roof, and 
stung me on the nose.**^ 

** WlwU^ saya be ?** inauired the Spaniard. 

Poor Transom^et intellect was at this time none of the clearest, being 
iBorethan baJ^'ai^leep, and not quite so sober as a hermit is wont to be ; he- 
odes, he must needs speak Spanish, of which he was by no means master, 
which led to a venr cooucai .blunder. Jilacrany in Spanoh, means scorpiodi 
Md Csstmon, an alligator, npt 'very similar in sound certainly^but the tertnir 
iiittoa l^ing the same, he selected in the hurry the wrong phrase. 

^ He says," replied Transom in bad JSpanish, '' that henas swallowed aa 
alligator, or, something of that sort, sir.'' Then a loud yawn. 

"SwalloWed a what?*' rejoined Campana, greatly astonished* 

''No, no," snorted the captain -^ " I am wrong -^ he says be has been 
fHrng; by an alligator." 

^ Stung by an alli^itor ! — impossible." 

"Why, tlien," permsted the skipper, "if he be not atun^ by an aUigator, 
or if he has not really swallowed one, at all events an alhgator hofl either 
>tttng or swallowed him — so make the most of it, Don Kicaido." 

'' \lvhy,tto is vhsiudk wilh all submission^" continued Campana ; ^ how 



198 tOU <AUr«Lft'8 .UI0« 

tiie d0to^ toM Ito «wbII»w ^n alligafor, or an aJligitor get into my hoixae 
to'annoy him V* 

(* Damn it/' mtid Tmniom, half ti|>fly and very sleepy, "tiiat's his look 
eat Yea are very imreaaonable, Don Ricardo : all that is the affair of 
fiiend Bang and the alligator : my purpose is solely to convey hia meaninE 
/fl«VW/y'»—t,l<md snore. ^ 

<'Oh,'* said Campana, lauehing, <*I see, I see; I left yoor friend aobre 
mefo, [on the table,] but nowl see he is n(5 roso." 

"Help, good people, help!" roared Bang — "help, or my nose will 
reach from this to the Moro Castle — Help !'* 

We got him oiit, and were I to ttve a thousand years, winch would be a 
tolerably good spell, I don't think I could forget his appearance. His nose, 
usually the smallest article of the kind that 1 ever saw, was now swollen 
as large as my fist, and as purple as a mulberry — the distension of the 
skin, from the Tenomous sting of the reptile — for stung he had heen by a 
scorpion — made it semi-transparent, so that it looked like a larg^ blob of 
currant jelly buns on a peg in the middle of his face, or a gigantic leech, 
corded with blood, givtnghis yisage the semblance of some grotesque old- 
fashioned dial, with a fantastic gnomon. 

" A poultice — a poultice — a ponltice, good people, 6r I shall pretsently 
be all nose together,'* — and a poultice was promptly manufactured from 
mashed pam^in, and he was put to bed, with his face covered up with 
it, as if an Italian artist had been taking a cast of his beauties in plaster (rf 
Paris. 

In the application of this said poultice, however, we had nearly extin- 
guished poor AaroQ among us, by suffocating him outright ; for the skip- 
ner, who was the operating surgeon in the first' instance, with me for 
his mate, clapped a whole laaleful over his mouth <and nose^ which, besides 
being scalding hot, sealed those orifices efSictually, and mdeed about a 
couple of tablespoonfuls had actually been foi;ped down his gullet, notwith- 
standing his struggles, and exclamations of ^ Pumpkin — bad — softened 
with castor oil— ^mnit, skipper, you*ll choke me" — spurt— sputter— 
sputter — " choke me, man.'» 

" Cuidado,^ said Don Ricardo • " let me manage " — and he got a small 
tube of wild cane, which he stuck into Bang's mouth, through a hole in the 
poultice-cloth, and seta nesro servant to watch that it did not sink intohis 
gullet, as he fell asleep, and with instructions to take the poaltice off when- 
ever the pain abated ; and there he lay on his back, Whistling through this 
artificial beak, like a sick snipe. 

At length, however, all hands of us seemed to have fallen asleep, but to- 
wards the dawning I was awakened by repeated bursts of suppressed 
laughter, and upon looking in the direction from whence the sounds pro- 
ceeded, I was surprised beyond all measure to observe Transom in a comer 
of the room in his trousers and shirt, squatted like a tailor on his hams, 
with one of the sable damsels on her knees beside him fabldin^ a candle, 
while his majesty's post-captain was plying his needle in a styteand with 
adeitefrity that would have charmed our friend Stultz .exceedingly, and 
every now and then bending double over his work, and swinging his body 
backwards and forwards With the water welling from his eyes, laughing all 
the whil<B like to choke himself. As for his bronze candleMick, Ithought 
she would have expired on the spot, with her white teeth glancing like 
ivory, and the tears running down her cheeks, as she every now and then 
dapped a handkerchief on her moutii to smother the uncontrollable up- 
roanoosness of her mirth. 

" Why, captain, what spree is Ibis ?'♦ said 1. 

•• Never you mind, but come hero. I say, Mr. Cringe, do yoii see him 
piping away there " — and there he was, nre enough, aim gurgling through 



lAw nM o«o»-nwhli his bltck' gu^x^an, whose pnmiiee H was to hav« 
vemof ed thl9 piMiltice, sooiid asleep. Snoring in tbs huge ehair at Baa|^ 
tMftd, wherein he had esfabhsiieci luoMeif, while the candle nt his pati^^s 
'^leek wfts flickering in thrsecket 

Mv superior was evidenihf hent en wickednpssu . 

** CFet up and pot on yvm trousers, man." 

I did so. 

«<New, wa^ a hit tiHl«xiperhini^Here,mydaf)ing'>^to^the sable 
vifgin who yms now «n the ^ut vioe, hustling about -> <* iiere,'* said the 
captain, sticking out a leg.of Ban^ trouseiB, ''hold ^fon there, mj 
\dear " 

She happened to be a nathre ef Hayti, and comprshendad Us French. - 

<* Now hold you that, Mr. Cringle.*' 

I took held <x the otiier leg, ana held it in a fitting poiition, wlule Tran- 
som deliberateiy sewed them, both tip. 

** Now. for the coat sleeiree — " 

We sealed them in a simitar maimer, 

••So — now for his shirt." * 

** We sewed m the ftera, and theb the stem, converting it into an out- 
fellidish-looking pulow^case,' and finaUj botfi sleeves ; and last of all, we got 
two live land-crabs from the servants, by dint ef persuasion and a little plata, 
end clapped one into eabh steekinp foot ' 

We then dressed ourseivei, tod when all was ready, we got a piece oC 
tape for a lanyard. «nd made one ead fast to the hanctte of a uurge earth^i 
water-jar,-fvU to.tna* brid^ which we placed, on Bang's pillow, and> passed 
the other end rgund the neck ef the i[|eeping i^egro. 
F ** Now g^ yojD tp^bed,*' said the eaplaiii tp tfis diitg^ handmaiden, " aiid 
fltondbyto^beofi; Mr. Cringle^ * ^ 

He. stepped te Don Ilicaj^o^B bedfomn d90r, i^d tapped loudly. 

" Hillo," qttm!h to Don. . On tfaisiitnt, like men springing a mine, the 
last who leavethe sa^'we sprang into the street^ when the skipper tumsdt 
and taking aim with a iar^e*custafd apple whicl^he had armed himsetf 
with, (I have formerly described this fruit as resembling a russet bag of 
celd puddii^, he let fly. Spin flew tlite a|»ple«- hash on the blackamooi's 
■obtMse 'stiout He started badL,'ahd ia his tenor and astonishment threw 
< simertauH over the back of his chair — gu9h poured the water — smash 
IbU the pipkin — ** mnrderV idated Bang, dasfaiiigoi'the poiiltice-cast, with 
such fdiy that it lighted, in the street — and away we raced at the top ol 
«nrspeed. » » ^ ' 

We ran 9s. f^ m our legs eodd'xarrv'ua for two hundred yards, and 
th6n taming walked'd^bemtely homl again>'as i^ we had been out taking 
a walk in the cool moraitig anr. '' ' . *' 

As we approach^. We heaid AHA ^dls uf ^ aegre, and Bang high in 
<»&. ' •*•:'• 

" You black rascal,',n'othing most se|fi(e* ycrtir turn but pnctiaing your 
John Canoe tricks upon a gfeatl e m ai n — ttike that, you villain, as a sraftll 
recompense.fbr ftoatiiig ipeoutef my Iwh—ol. rather oflfthe table," and the 
ludicnousness of his couch seemed to ceme over the wortRy fellow once 
more, an^ he laudied load and long -^'^ Poor devil^ I hope I have not 
kuK yoi4? here, CEuashi, there's a pistole, go bqy a plaster rar your brokea 
ipate;" * \ 

By this time we had retnmed in fronts thehepse, and as we ascended 
tte uiont stairs, we again heard a loud raeketing within ; but blaekie's voice 
was now wanting in the row. Wherein the Bpaaiaidan^ oilrfiiend appeared 
to be the dramoHa ptrkmm ^ and sure enough there waa; Den Rieajoo end 
Bans at it, tooth and natt. 

*^ Allow me to assist you," quodi the Don.* 



J 



900 Toic CBnroLs's i^o. 

' * Oh no— nmeko'-^nmehOf^ quoth Bang, wlio wms spinnii^ round and 

Toond in hit •hirt on one leg, trains to thrust bis foot into his troasero ; but 

tiie gument vss impenrioua ; and after ^nlating Noblet in a pbouette^ 

Jbe sat down in despair. We appeared — ** Ah, Transom, glad to see you 

— some evil spirit nas Jiewitahed oie, I belieye— 'Oyernig|it 1 was stung to 
dfeath b^ a scorpion — half an hour a^ I was deluged hj an ii/visible sfHiit 

— and just now when I got up, and began to pull on my stockings. Lord! 
a land-crab was in the toe part^and see how he has scarified itte'" — fork- 
ing up his peg — "I then tried my trousers,*' he continued in a most Md^ 
fnltone -^ ** and lo ! the legs are 8eale<]. And look at my face, ^jaw you 
ever such an unfortunate? But the devil take you, Transom, I see 
through your tneks now, and %ii^ (Miy you off for this yet, take my word 
for it" 

The tr«th is, that our* amigo^ Aaron had gpt^ an awful fright on his first 
awakening after his cold bath, for he had^Vea the poor bfack fellow an 
ugly blow upon the face, before-he had gathered liis senses well about him, 
ana the next mpment seeing the blood t^treanuns from his.nos^, and mixing 
with the custard-Uke pulp of the fruit with which his face was plastered, 
he took it into his noddle mat he*had knocked the man's brdinis out How- 
ever, we righted the worthy fellbw-the best way we could, and sho^tlj after- 
wards cof¥ee was brought, and Bangliaving cot hiniiself shaven ana dress- 
ed, began to forget all his botherations.* But oefore we left the house, ma- 
dama, Don Ricardo's better bal{^ in»sted on ancnnting his nose with some 
mixture famous for reptile bites. Ht^ natural gpod-breoding made him,sub» 
roit to the application, Which. wa« neither more nte* lesothan an infusion of 
indigo andlgmger, with which the wojthy lady.paintedour'friend^s face aad 
muzzle in a most kidicrous manner — it was Aeod* And tpUs betwe^i him 
and an ancient Briton. Reefpoint at this rilbraent appeared at th^ dt>or with 
a letter from t^e merchadt ioa^ins, which ha4M>e^ sent down to the cor- 
vette, regarding the time of sailing, and aeqjiainting as woiBn they would 
be ready. While Captain Transom was perusing it, Batfg was practising 
Spairish at the ^xpen^ of Don Ricardo, whom he had boxed into a comer : 
but all his Spanish seemed to be^dcrapa of schoolboy Ua-tin, ahd I notic^ 
that Campana had the greatest dif9pulty in |||eeping hia countenance^ At 
length Don Ricardo approached ua*^ *' Gentlemen, Lhavc laid out a little 
plan for the daf ; it is my 'wife's saint's da^, ai)d a holyda^rin the family, 
so we propose' goins to a oo^e 'propefty of nfkinelabout ten nnles from Sant- 
iago, and staying tul norohig^^ What^ity yoii?'|- • * . ^ 

I chimed in — "I feai;, sia-, that I shall be unable to accompany you, 
even if Captain TraniH>ni riiould be good • enouah to giiGe me leave, as 1 
have an errand to do -for 4hat unha]^py young'feUow. tnt we spoke aboat 
last e^renirtg — B6me trinkets which 1 prdmi^.to ^de^iver ;• here they are '*- 

— and I produced the mipiatart And e'rgcifix.' 

Campana winc6d — " Unpleasant., certahily, Lieutenant "«aid he. 

<< I know it will be so myself, but I have praised -' — " 

" Then far be it from me to.induee you to breal^ your promise," said the 
worthy man. '* My son,'' said he/,^veiyf -^ the u-iar you saw yesl^ay 
is confessor db Don Picador Cangrejo's family; his reason for asking to 
obtain an interview with you was from its being known that you were activp 
in- capturing the iuif<nrtunate men with whom- young Federieo.^angrejo^ 
his only son, was leagued. Oh' that poor, poor boy ! Had,^ou known 
him, gentlemen, as I knew, 'poor, poo^iPed^nco i" / 

"He was an awful villain, however, you must Allow," said the captjiin. 

** Qranted in the fullest sens^, my dear sir," rejoined Campana ; <<^but 
we are all frail,, erring creatures) and he w^s hardly dealt by. He is now 
gone to his heavy, heavy account, and I may as well t^ you the poor boy's 



TOM ca^d^U&'s I4Kfa. ^ 90^ 

sad aixajf at oisce. Had you but seen him in his ptattGng infiwcy, in his 
■uimy boy hooi^ 1 

** He was the only son of a rich old father, an honest worldly^ man, and 
of a most peevish, irascible ten^per. PoorFederico. and his sister Fran- 
cisca, his on)y sister, were o(Ven cruelly used ; and his orphan cousin, my 
sweet god-daughter, Maria Olivera, their playmate, was, if any thing, more 
harshly treated;' for although his mother was and is a~ most excellent 
woman, aiid always stood between them and the old man's ill temper, yet at 
the time I speak of she had.retumed to Spain, where a- long period of ilV 
f health detained her for upwards of three y^ears. Federico by mis time was 
j nineteen years of a^e, tall, handsome^ and accomplished beyond all the 
' youth of his rank and time of life in Cuba ; But you have ^een lum, gentle- 
men — .in^ his extremity, it is true — yet,- fallen as he was, I mistake if 
▼ou thought him a cmnnum man. For good, or for evil, my heart told me 
he would be conspicuouSyi and I waai, alas the day ! too trUe a prophet. 
Hi^ attachment to his cousiQ, who, on the.deathof her mother, had become 
an inmate ofDon f^tcador'd house, &ad been evident to all but the purblind 
.eld mail' for a longtime ; and when he did discover* it, he imperatively fbr- 
badeall intercourse between tl^em, as, forsooth, he had projected a richer 
mateh £of him, and shut Maria up in a corner of his large mansion. Fede- 
rico, haughty and proud, could not; stomach this. He ceased to reside at 
his father's estate, which had been confided to his management, and began 
to frequent the billiard-tjible, and monte-tables,^and taverns, and in a thou- 
sand ways, gave, from less tQ more,/si\ch unendurable offence, that his 
father at lengtj^ shut his door against him, and turned him, with twenty 
doubloons in nis pocket, into the str^^ 

<< Friends itaterqeded, for the feud 6oon becanfe public, and, among others, 
I essacyed to heal it ; and with the fond, although passionate father, I easily 
succeeded; but how true it ii^ Hhat eyil comnrnnlcation. corrupts good 
manners ! ' I found Federico,by this time,linked in bands of steel with 9l junto 
of desperadoes, whose calling wasanv thing but egui vocal ; and implacable 
to a degree, that, knowing him as I had known him, I had believed impossible. 
.But, %la8, the human heut is indeed desperately wicked. I struggled long 
with the excellent Father Carera to bring abeup^ reconciliation, and thought 
we had 'succeeded, as Franco was induced to return to his father's house 
once more, and for many days and weeks we all flattered ourselves that he 
hdd reformed ; until one morning, about four mbnths ago, he wasdiscovered 
doming out of his cousin's rooin ^bout thfc dawning by his father, who inv- 
mediately charged him with seducing his ward. High words ensued. 
Poor Maria rushed out and threw, herself at her uncle^s feet The old man, 
in a transport of fury, kicked her on the face as she lay prostrate ; where- 
upon, God help me, he was fdled to the eartl\^ by his own fleshy and bone, 
and blood —^ by his abandoned son. 

< What rein can hold licentious wibkedaess. 
When down the hili he holds his fierce career ?'' 

** The rest is soon toM ; — he joined the- pirate vessels at Puerto Escon- 
dido, and, from his daring and reckless intrepidity, soon rose to command 
among them,. and was proceeding in his infernal career, when the God 
whom he had so fearfully defied, at length sent him to expiate his crimes 
on the scaffold.*' 

"But the priest '* said I, much excited. 

*' True," continued Don Ricardo, " Padre Carera brought a joint mes- 
sage from his poor mother, and sister, and -^ and, oh, my darling god-child, 

my heart- dear Maria ! • »' And the kind old man ^vept bitteriy. I was 

much moved. 



90k TOM 6BIir«IiS*S LOS. 

* Why, Mr. CnngK'* ond Tisnaooi, '^If yoa Aove prooptod t(» deliver 
the trinkets m^pnpriapertena. there^s an end, take l^ve — Aothins doin^ 
down jondAT — send TaiKackie for clothes. Mr. Reefpotnt^ g(^ to the boat, 
and dend up Tailtackle ; flH> go you must to these unfortunates^ and we 
Aall then start on our ^^nne to too cofiee estate with our worthy host.'* 

''Whj,** said Campana; *'tiie faniiiy are m the coaalry; (hey fire 
about four miles from Santiaeo^ on the verv |oad to my property, and we 
shall call on our way ; but I denH much aoraire^ these interviews -> theE» 
willbe&5e<n«, Ifear " . .' . 

** Not on my part," said I ; <> but call I must, for I solemnly prcAnised '* 
— and presenteo the mbiiatore to Don Ricarda 

Catepana looked at it It was ezqoisitely finished, and represented a 
most beautiful girl, a dark, large-eyed, sparklmg, Spanish bsauty. 'fOh, 
my dear, dear t^ild,"' munnurMl D«n Rieardo^ ^nxowjike this war to what 
you were ; how changed you are nom from What it is — aia's I alas ! fiat 
come, gen|lemen, my wife is ready, and my \w^ nieces," — the pretty giiis 
who were of our party the preTionsevenittg-^ " and here'are the horses." 

At this moment the.Iittle midshipman. Master ReefpoiA, a great faTouiite 
of mine, hj the by, reappeared, with TaiHackle behmd him, c&rrying my 
bundle. 1 was regularly caiujht, as the clothes, on the 4;Aance of a lark, 
had been broujght uora the stop, although stowed out of right under the '" 
stem-sheets ofthe boat 

^ Here are your clothes, Mr. Cringle,** qooUi middy. 

*< Devil confound your dviKty," internally' monnuied h 

The captain twined, .and smiled. Upon ^hich little Reefy stole vp (d 
me — " Lord, Mr. Uf\ngle, .coirid you but' ^t me ieaTe to go, it *woald b^ 
^ucha— -"' - 

** Hold your ton^e, boy, how caifl- ■*» 

Transoni struck in — ^ Master Reefpcnnt, I see what you are driviBg at ; 
but how shall the Hrebrand be tidien care of when 90U ato away, eh 7 be» 
sidesj you have no clothes, and we shall be away.a couple of days moiA 
^baMy.'* ' 

**Oh, yes, or. I have clothes; I have a hair-brush and a tooth-brBsh, • 
andtwoshirt-collars, in my widstcoat pocket" « • 

'< Very well, can we venture to lumber our kind friends widi this snat» 
Mr. CringleL and can yre really leavethe ship witibouthim ?" '* <Littie fiei^ 
was now all alive. <* Tailtackle^- jgs on board — say we slMdl 6e back to 
dinner the day after to-morrow,** saS the ciq)tain. 

We now made ready for the start, and certunly the caraleade was a 
remarkable one. First, there was an old l^^nbering family wtmtt, » swt 
of gig, with four posts or.upri^its sqpporting a «anopy covered with leather^ 
and with a hign dash-iron ^or splasn-boarcl in front There were cur- 
tains depending from this canopy, which on occasion coold be let down,'sf> 
as to cover in U19 sides and (rent The> whole' was of the most clumsy 
workmanship that can be. imagined, and hung by untapned leather straps 
in a square wooden frame, from the front 01 whic^ ^ain protruded 
two shafts,, straight as Corinthian pillars, and equally substantial, embra- 
dng an uneomiponly fine mule, one of the largest and handsomest of the 
species which I haa seen. The harnessing partook of the. same kind of' . 
unwieldy strengUi and s^ity, and was rioiiy embossed vnth itilyer and 
dirt. Astride on this rmdo sat a household negro, with a huge thong, of 
bullock's hide iii one hand, and the reins in the other. In this voifure were 
ensconced la Senora. Campana, a portly concern, as already mentioned, 
two of her bright black-eyed laughing nieces, and Master Reefpoint, invisi- 
ble as he lay smothered among the ladies, all to his httle^glszed cocked** 
ha^ and jabbering away in* a most unintelligible fashion, sp far as theyoump 
ladies, and eke the old one, were concemjecL However, they appeared aU 



COM o)^ir«iJft^a iM> -008 

lai^tfl^tidd^ by little Reefy, either mentally or pli^^sioally, for off they 
trundled, laughing and sicirling loud above the noise and creaking of the 
vo^tngte. Then 'came three small, ambling, stoutiah, long- tailed ponies, the 
biggest nrX kbove foiirteen hands high ; these^were the barbs intended for 
mine host, the el^I^C) and my^lf, caparisoned with high demipique old- 
iashioned Spanish saddles, mounted WUVailver stirrups, and clumsy bridles, 
^th h ton of ruBtyaron in each pQor brute's mottth for a bit^^and curbs like 
a piece of otur chain oable, alL very rich; Aod, as before mentioned with 
regard, to the vo^ante, far from clean. Their pace was a^SMi nm, a com- 
pound of walk, trot, and canter^ or rather of a trot and a canter, the. latter 
broken dov^n and frittered away through the instrumentality of a ferociOHS 
IVdfanieluke bit, but as easy as an arm;chair ; and this was, I speak it feel- 
in^y, a ^at convenience, a^ a jailor is not a Centaur, not altc^ether of 
a piece with his hprse^ as it were ; yet both. Captain Transom and myself 
"were rq^ther goodish horspmen for nauticals, although rather apt to go over 
the tioWB«dpo'n bcoachii^'to sviddenly. Don Ricardo's costume woiud have 
been thought a little out of thcway in Leicestershire ; most people put on 
their boots *< when the^^ d» a 'riding go,'^ but he chose to mount in shoes 
and white cott^ stockings, and white jean small-clothes, with a flowing 
yellG^^sttipectl'^n^ham- coat, the skirts of which fluttered in the bree^ 
behind ium,' hi^ withered face leaded "by a hUge Panama hat, and with 
enormous -silver spurs on his heels, the rowels two inches in diameter. ^ 
' Away lumbered th^ volanie, and away We pranced after it For the first 
two miles the scenery was tarne enough ;^ but after, that, tl^e gently swell- 
ing eminences^ on each si4e o^.the road rose abrupti|r into rugged moun- 
tains ; and the dell betw.e^n them, which had hitherto been verdant with 
ivaving guinea grasSj became co\(ered with, large trees, under the dark 
shade, of which we lost sight of the sun, and the contrast made every thing 
aroufid us for a time almost uiylistinguishabie. ^he forest continued to 
overshadow the high-road for two miles farther^ only broken by a smsdl 
cleared patch now aild then, where the sharp-spiked hmestoiie rock^ shot 
up like minaret?^ and the fire-sca,thed stumps of the- felled trees stood out 
among the rotten earth in the crovices, from' .which, however, sprung yams 
and cocoas, and peas of all kind^ and graoadilloes, and a profusion of herbs 
find roots, with the. greatest l-usuriance. 

At length wq came suddenly ppon a cleared space ; a most beautiful 
spot of ground, where, in the centre of a green plot of velvet 'grass, inter- 
sected with numberl(iss small walks, gravelled/ronva neighbouring rivulet, 
• stood a^ibge One^stbry wooden edifice^ built in the form of a square, with 
a court-yard in the centre. Fron^ the moistness of the atmosphere, the 
outside of the unpainted weather-bbardinghad a green damp appearance, 
and so tar as the house itself was concerned, th^e was an air of great dis- 
comfort about the place. A large open balcony ran round the whole house 
OB the outside ;' and fronting us there ^'was a .clumsy wooden porch sup- 
ported on pillars, with the open door yawhing behind it 

The hills on both sides were cleareid^ and planted with most luxuriant 
coilfee-hushes, and pi;pviaion grounds, while the house was shaded by seve- 
ral splendid star-applo and kennip-trees,' and there was a border of rich 
flowering sh^bs surroi^nding it on all sides. The hand of woman had 
been there ! 

A few half-naked negroes were' lounging about, and on hearing our ap- 
proach they immediately came up and stared wildly at us. 
** All fresh from the ship these," quoth Bang. 
** Can't be," said Transom. <* Try and see." - 

I spoke some of the commonest Spanish expressions to them, but they 
neither understood them, nor could they answer me. But Bang was more 
soocessful in Eboe and MandingOi both of which he spoke fluently —-ao* 
8» 



994 flOM «Rt«»Ul'f LM. 

eonplMifBeflta, wtidk I oeglM to hftre etceptod, byifao by, .vii0B I teefamf 
he WB8 little skilled in any toogoe lint RngiMl*- 

L»rge tMrds of cattle were gnoeing on tSe skills of die wood, fod about 
one InmdTed males were scimmblinj^ and picking their food ki a rocky 
rirei^ooarae-which bisected the yaliey. The nills; tree-eorered, roee aroam 
tins solitary residence in ill directiMis, as if it had been sitBttted in the bol^ 
torn of a pnneh^bowl ; while a small wateiiUl, abont thirty feet higlv fell 
so near one of the ooraen of the bnilding, tint when the wmd set that .wsy, 
as I afterwards found, the spny moistened my hair throng the open win- 
dow in my sleeping apartment We proceeded to the door and dismsvnted^ 
following the example of oar host, and proceed^ t» help the gentlewomen 
to alight Rom Uie voUmte. When wq were all accounted for in the poicfa, 
Don Ricardo began to shoot, " CHodM, msdew, ven «m — penilmi, vsn oca.^ 
The call was for some time onattended to ; at lebgth, two taB, good-iook- 
ing, decently'^dressed negroes' made their appeamnce, mid look charge of 
onr he$Hm uld carria^ ; bat all this tiooe Aere was no appeuaAee of any 
Irring cr eatur e b^ongine to the fomilT. 

The darkliaU, into which tibe porcn opened, was paved with th(» osoal 
diamond-shaped bricks or tiles, out was not ceiled; the la^rs of -the roef 
being exposed ; there was little or no faBiitare in it,.fha^we oanMt see, 
except a clumsy table in the centre of m inopk, and one or two of-tfae'*' 
leathem-backed reclining chsin/sach as Whiffle used to patronise.- Semo^ 
ral doors opened fiom this corafoitless flalooOy whidi #ak mpooent ef |l^nt, 
into other apaitinents, otte of which wi|s ajar. 

^^EstrwM^ nninnmbd Don Ricardo, ■* mi^'ejimlie /^ 

^^Coolish reception this, Tom," qtiodi Aaron Ban^ 

« Deucedly so,** s<id the skipper. \ ' 

But Campana, hooking his htllofat wife under his arm, while- we did the 
agreeable to the niece8,'m>w addressed biyiself Ito enter, with the constant 
prelinmiaTy ejaculation •of all weU>bred Spaniards in crossing a friends 
threshold, ^Aoe Jiaria vurissinMf** when we were checked by a load tear- 
ing fit of couching, wfach aeetned almost to sofibeate Jhe patient, and 
female voices m great alarm, proceeding from the room beyond. 

Presently a litne anatomy of a man presented himself at the door of the 
apartment, wriitsins his hands, and apparently in great misety. Campana 
and his wife, witn ul the alacnty of kmd-hearted people, immediately went 
up to him, and said something which I did not overhear, but the poor crea* 
ture to whom- they spoke appeared quite bewildered. *< What iftit, Don 
Picador ?'* at length we could hear Campana say,-^ '* what is iti Is it 
my poor dear Maria who is worse; or what — speak, man — may my wife 
enter?" 

(' Si, si — ves, ves," said the afflicted Don Picador— ''yes, yes, let her 

I in — send — for 1 am unable to. think or act — send one of my people 
ack post to Santiago for the doctor •-- haste, haste. Sangre -^ keeha aangrt 
porUibocaJ* .» • 

" Good Gk)d, why did yotf not say'^o before ?" rejoined Campana* 

Here his wife called loudly to her husband, " JBtcerdo, Jlfcordo, per enter 
it m oZmo, monda per d medico — she has burst a blood-vessel --iMaiia is 
dying!" 

"Let me Ij^}*^^ myself; I will go myself." — And the excellent man 
mshed for th^oor, when the poor heart-broken Pieadorchmg to his knees. 

'* No, no, don't leave me. Seftd some one else— ~-" • 

♦* Take care, man, let me go — — ^ " 

Transom and I volunteered in a breath — " Ko, no, 1 will so myself" 
continued Don Ricardo ; '* tet go, man — God help me, the old creatore » 
crazed, — tl tit jo no wrf e." 

" Here, here ! help, Don BScardo I" cried his wifor 



ba< 



«Mr CftiKALS's LOG. J05 

Off Gitarted TnuKMAn for the-doctor, and into tlie To<An rushed Don Hea- 
doi' and Cftdipftna, and, from the sounds in, the sick-chamber, all seemed 
Inislfe and confiiKon ; at length the former -appeared to be endeavoufing 
to lift the poor sv^rer,' saos to enable her to sit up in bed ; in the mean 
time hercQughing hod gradually abated into a low 8uffi)oating convulsive 
gaap. 

' ■* So, 90,' lift hm up, man," we could hear Compana say ; " lift her up *-r 
qiBck -^ or she will be sufiocated.'* 

At length, in a momeht of great irritation, excited on jthe one hand by 
fastf intense interest in the poQ» suffering girl, and anger at \h^ peevish, liel{>- 
'l4bB Dqn Picador, Don RnArdo, to our unutterable surprise, rapped out^ m 
gude broad "Scotch, as he brushed awirV'Senor CangKJo from the bedside 
with violence that ^pun him out of the door -^ *' Ood — the mdd daUed deevil 
is 4| fnmnUss as a dDclwn." 

My jaw dropped— I was thunderstruck — Bang's eje met mine^^ 
** MoFder !*' quoth Sang,' so soon as his astonishment let him collect breath 
e&oqgh, " and here I have been for two whole daylipractisins Spanish; to 
my great improvement no doAbt, upon a Scotchman-^ how edufied ht muist 
haTe been !'* 

* ** But the doekm, man,'* said |r- fitsUmUis as a doektn — how classic ! 
.whai an exclamation to proceed uom the mouth of a solemn Don !'* 

'* No gibes regarding the dockeo^" promptly chimed in Bang ; " it is a 
l^glily respactabM veg^ohle, let me' teH you, and useful on occasion, which 
is more.*' , . . 

The hoise in the room ceased, and presently G'ampana joined us. « We 
ttast proceect,'* said hffv " it will never do for you to deliver the jewels now, 
Mr, Cringle ^ she is too much excit^d already, even from seeing me." 

But it was more easy to determine on. proceedins4han to put it in execu- 

tion* for a heavy cloud,Jthat4iad b^n overaanging the small valley the whole 

moniing, had by this time spread out and covered the entire face of nature 

Hko a sable paU ; the birds of the air flew low, and seemed perfectly gorged 

with the superabundance of flies, which were thickly t^etaking themselves 

for shelter under the evergreen leaves of the bashes. i^U the winged creo* 

tiaii, great and small, were fast hastening to the cover of the leaves and 

1nn.ncnes of th$ trees. The cattle were speeding -to the hollows under the 

impending rocks ; negroes, men, women, and cmldren, \rere hurrying with 

^their hoes on their shoulders past the windows to their huts. Severallarge 

oloodhounds had ventured into the hall^and were crouching with a low 

whine at pur feet The huge carrion crow^ were the only' Uvin^ tiling 

. wfaiclf seegined to brave the approaching ckubascot ai^d were soariujg high up in 

the heavens, appealing to touch the black agitated fringe of the lowering 

thunder-clouds. All othpr kinds of winged creatures, parrots, and pigeons, 

' and Clones, liad vanished by this, time under the thickest trees, and into 

the deepest coverts, and the wild-ducks were shooting past in long lines, 

piercing the thick air with outstretched neck and clanging wing. 

' StDtddenly the wind.fell, and the ^ound of the waterfall increased, and 

frew rough and loud, and the undefinable rushing noisa|^at precedes a 
eavy fall of rain in the tropics* the voice of the wildemepc yeaned through 
the lugh woods, until at length the clouds sank upon tfaf «d)ey in boiling 
joists^ rolling half way down the surrounding hills ; and flHiirater of the 
stream, whose scanty rill but an instant before hissed ovei^Se precipice, 
in a small transparent ribbon of clear glass-green, sprinkled with white 
foam, and then threaded its way round the large rocks in its capacious 
channel, like a silver eel twisting through a dry desert, now changedin a 
moment to a dark turgid chocolate colour ; and even as we stood and look- 
ed, lo ! a column of water froih the mountains pitdied in thunder over the 
face of the precipice, making the earth tremble, and driving up from the 



' \ 



S06 soM ckUiolk'b I>0«. 



rugged face of th^verlasdos rooks ia smoke, and for^Bg the isar into ei" 
dies and sudden blasts, whi(£ tossed the branches of the tjrees that over- 
hung it, as they were dimly seen through clouds of dzizai^e, as if .tiiey had 
been shaken by a tempest, ailthough there wa^ ^ot a breath stirring' else- 
where out of heaven ; while little wavering spiral wreatl)s of mist rose up 
thick from the surface of the boiling pool at the bottoin of the cataract,^iike 
miniature water-spouts, until they wefQ dispersed by t)»e a^tation-of 'the 
air above. 

At length the swollen torrent rolled roaring.down the nanrow valley, fill- 
ifia the wIko|e water-course, about fifty yar(S wide,* and afava;icing with a 
solid front a fathom high — a fathom ^«<pdoes not convey the idea — like 
9. stream of lava, ok as one 0iay conceive of the Red "Sea, when, at the 
strotchii^g forth of the hand of the prophet of the Lord, its mighty waters 
rolled back and stood heaped up as a wall to the host of IsraeL The channel 

8f the stream, which but a minute before I oould.have leaped aciosSySras 
lie next mstunl filled, and utterly impassable. 

** You can't possibly move," said Don Pipador | " yop can neither go on 
nor retreat ; you must stay until the river subsides^" And the rain now 
began pattering in large drops, like scattering shot preceding an engage- 
ment, on the wooden shingles with which the nouse waa roofed, gradually 
increasing to a loud rushing noise, whiSi, as the Aoms were not ceiled, 
prevented a Word being heard. 

Don K-icardo be|^n to fret and fidget mdsjt awfully — "** Beginning of the 
seasons— why f we may not 'get awaylbr a week, and all the shipb wiU^ 
kept back in their loading.'* . 

All this time, the 0001" sufibrer's tearing cough ^as heard In the lulls of 
the rain ; but it graaually became less and less severe, and the lady of the 
house, and Senora Campana and Don f*icador)B dauj^hter, at length slid into 
the room on tiptoe, leaving one of Don Ricardo's nieces in the room with 
the sick person. 

'^She is asleep — hush.'* The weather continued as bad as ever, and 
we passed a very comfortless forenoon of it. Picador, Campana, Bang, and 
myself, perambulating tlie large dark hall, while the ladies were clustering 
together in a comer with their work. At length the -weather cleared, aiMl 
I could ^et a glimpse of mine hostess and her fair daughter. The former 
was a very handsome woman, about forty ; she was tall, and finely formed ; 
h^r ample figure set off by the very simple, yet, to my taste, very desant 
dress formerly described : it was neither more nor less tlian the plain black 
silk petticoat over a chemise, made full at. the bosom, with a great quantity 
of lace frills ; her dark glossy hair was gathered on the crown of her head 
ii^one lon^ braid, twistefl round and round, and rising up like a sn>all turret 
Over all she wore' a loose shawl of yellow silk crape. But the .daughter, I 
nevbi shall forget her ! Tall and full, and macrhificentlv shaped -^ every 
motion was instinct with grace. Her beautiful black hair hung a yard 
down her back, long and gk>ssy, in three distinct braids, while it* was 
shaded, Madonna-like, off her hi^h and commanding forehead ; her eye- 
brows — to use ^ttlc Reefy's simile -^ looked as if cut out of a moose's 
skin; and her. eyes themselves, laftge, dark, and sod, yet brilliant and 
sparkling at the sKme time, however contradictory this may read ; her nose 
was straii^ht, ated her cheeks firm and oval and her mouth, her full lips, her 
ivory teeth, heY neck and bosom, we^e perfect, the latter if anything giving 
promise of too matronly a womanhood ; but at the time I saw her, nothing 
could have been more beautiful ; and, above all, there was an inexpressible 
charm in the clear transparent darkness of her colourless skin, inta toldch 
you thoufckt you could look; her shoulders, and the upper part of her arms, 
were peculiarly beautiful. Nothing is so exquisitely lovely as the upper 
part of a beautiful woman's arm, and yet we have lived to sec this admira^ 



4 



^ . TOM CKIlTGLa'S LOO. 907 

t>le feature shrottded and lost in those abominable ^i^ots. ''Wo nnlo the 
women that sew pillows fo all armholes,'' Esekiel, zul 18. May I ToAue 
on such a quotation in such a place ? — She was «rtreniely hke her brother, 
and her fine face was overspread with tiie pale cast of thou^t — a settled 
melancholy, lil^e the shadow of a cloud in a calm day on a summer land- 
scape, lAaatlod over her fhie features ; and although she moved with the 
air of a princess, and was possessed of that natuml politeness which fiur 
surpasses all artificial polish, yet the heaviness of her heart was apparent 
in every motion, as well as in all she si^d. 

Many people labour under an unaccountable ^delusion, imagininf^ in their 
hallucination, that a Frenchwoman, Mr instance, or even an En^shwoman 

— nay, some in their madness have been heard to say that a Scotchwoman 

— has been known to walk. Egregious errors all ! An Iiisfawoman of the 
true Milesian descent can looflb a step or two sometimes, but all other wo* 
man, fair or brown, shoit or tall, stout or thin, only stump, shuffle, jig, er 
amble — none *but a Spaniaf a can walk. 

Onoe or twice she tried to enter into coiiversation with me on indifibrent 
sabjects ; but there was a constant tendency to approach (against her own 
prearranged determination) the one, all-absorbing one, the mte of her poor 
orother. > ** Oh, had you but knowaJum, Mr. Cringle -- had you but known 
him in his boyhood,' before bad company had oonmptod him !** exclaimed 
she, after having asked me if he died penitent, and she turhcxi away and 
wepk ''« Franciseot'* said albw hoarse female voice from the othier room : 
"^ FrtmeUcOf ten aea, mi querida hermantK.** The sweet girl rose, and spea 
across the floor with the grace^of Tagliont, (oh, the Uga Taglionia ! as poor 
dear Bang would have ventured to have said, if theisylphicte had then been 
kno^n,^ and presently returning whispered something to her mother, who 
rose aha drew Doh Ficador aside. The waspish M man riiook himself 
dear of his wife, as he said with indecentasperity — " No, no, she will but 
VUke a fool ^f herself.'* 

His wife drew herself up,— 

** She never made a fool of herself, Don Picador, but once ^ and God foN 
give those who were the cause of it It is not kind of you, it is not kind." 

'*' W^^l) weA," rejoined the querulous old man, *' do as you will, do as 
you will, — always crossing me, always crossing." 

His wife took no farther notice, but stepped across the room to me,— 
^Our poor dying Maria knows you are here*; and probably you are not 
aware that he wrote to her after his " — her voice quavered — '* after his 
^eoBdemnation, the night before he sufiered, that you were the only one who 
showed him kindness ; and she has also read the newspapers giving an ac- 
count of the trial. She wishes to see you — will you pleasure her ? Senom 
Campana has made her acquainted that you arelthe bearer of soide trinkets 
belonging to him, from which she infers you witnessed his last moments,* 
AS one of them', she was told, was her picture, poor dear girl ; and she knew . 
^ musthme ^oum to hi$ htart till -the latL But it will be too agitating 
^ will tiy and dissuade her from'the interview un^ the doctor comes, at 3X 
events." 

The worthy lady stepped again into Mariali apartment, and 1 could not 
Avoid hearing what passed. 

''My dear Maria, Mr. Cringlchas no objection to wait on you ; but after 
your severe attack thiis morning, I don*t think it will be wise. Delay it 
^til Dr. Bergara conges — at any rate, until the evening, Maria." 

''Mother," she said, in a weak, plaintive voice, although husky from the 
phlegm which was fast coagulating in her throat — " Mother, I afready 
have ceased to be of this world ; I am dying, dearest mother, fast dying ; 
uid oh, thou All-sood and All-merciful being, against whom I have feaiv 
&Uy sinned, woula that the last struggle were now o*er, and that my weary 



908- Tdk ckikgia's i^. 

spirit were released, and my shame hidden in the silent tomhj and my sitf* 
fjBrin||8 and very name forgotten !" She paused and gasped for breath ; I 
thought it was all over with her ; hut she rallied again and proceeded— 
** Time is rapidly ebbing from me, dearest mother, — for mottier I must caU 
y<m, more than a mother have you been to nie*— and the ocean of eternity 
IS opening to my view. If I am to see him at. all, I must see him now ; 1 
shall be more agitated by the expectation of the jjiterview than by< seeiag 
him at once. Oh ! let me see him now, let me look on one who witnessed 
his last moments." 

I 6ouid see Senora Cangiejo where she stood. She crossed her hands 
on her bosom, and looked up towards' h'eaven, and then turned mournfully 
toward9 me, and be<^ned me toapprosush. I entered the small room, which 
had l>een fitted up by the -poor 0t\ with some taste ; the furniture was better 
than any I had seen in a Spamah house before, and there was a mat on the 
floor, and some exquisite miniatures and small landscapes ojrthe wallil. It 
was her boudoir, opening apparently into a-bedw)om beyond. . It was lifted 
by a large cj/pen un^azed wmdow, with a row of wooden balustrades be- 
yond it, forming part of a small balcony. A Carmelite friar, a venerable old 
man, with hot tears fast falling from his old eyes over his wrinkled cheeks, 
whom I presently found to be the excellent "Padre Carera, sat in a large 
chair by the' bedside, with a silver cu^ in his hand, hepide which lay a large 
crucifix of the same metal ; be had just administered extreme unction, and 
the viatieumy he fondly hoped, would pvove a passport for his dear <;hild to 
another and a better world. As I entered he rose, held out his hand to^me, 
and moved round the bottom of the:bed. 

The shutter^ had been opened, and, with a^suddenness which no one can 
comprehe'hd who has not Uved in these climates^ the sun now shone brightly 
on the flowers and garden plants which grew in a range of pots on the hdr 
cony, and lighted up the pale features of a lovely girl, lovely even in the ' 
jaws of deaOi, as she lay with her face towards the light, supported in a 
reclining position on cushions, on a red morocco mattress, laid on a 60|t of 
frame or bed 

' Light was her form, and darkly dolicale 
Tluit brow, wh«reon her native aunhad set,. 
But had not marr'd.** 

She was tall, so far as I could judge, but oh, how attenuated ! Her 
lower limbs absolutely made no impression on the mattress, to which her 
frame appeared to cUng, giving a ghastly conspicuousness to the edematona 
swelling of her feet, and to her person, for, alas ! she was in a way to have 
becom0 a mother — 

" The offspring of his whywavd youth, 
When»lie betrayed Bianca's truth ; 
The maid whose folly could confide 
fn. Mm, who made her not bis bride.** 

Her hand grasping her pocket-handkerchief, drenched, alas, with blood, 
hung oyer the side ofthe bed, thin and pale, with her long taper fingers as 
transparent as if they had been fresh cut alabaster, with the blue veins 
winding through her wrists, and her bosom wasted and shrunk, and her 
neck no thicker than her arm, with the pulsations of the large arteries as 
plain and evident as if the skin Jiad been a film, and her beautiful features, 
although now sharpened by the near approaching death agony, her lovely 
mouth, her straight nose, her arched eyebrows, black, like pencilled jet lines^ 
and her small ears, — and oh, who Can describe her rich black raven hair, 
ying combed out, and i^pread all over the bed and pillow? She was 
dressed, in a long^looae gown of white crape j it looked like a windUngts^eet { 



TOM CRIKOLC'S LOG. / f09 

V 

"tut the fire of her eyes — I have purpodelytiot ventured to describe them — 
the miearthty brilHancy of her la^e, full, swimming eye ! 

When I entered, I bo^ed, and remained standing near the door. She 
said something, but in so low a voice that I could not catch. the word ; and 
when 1 8tepi>ed nearer, on purpose lo hear more distinctly, all at once te 
blood mantled in her cheeks and forehead and throat, like tiie la«t kleam of 
Ihe setting sun ; but it faded as rapidly, and once more ahe lay pafo aa her 

SIBOCk-** * 

• I 

V 

^ Tet not such blush, as mounts when health would shoif 
All the heart's hue in that delightful glow; 
^ But 'twas a hectic tint. of sacred care, 

That for a burning foment fever'd there ; 
,And the wild sparkle of her eye seem'd caught 
From high, and iighten'd with electric thought) 
. Though its black orb these long low lashes' fringe 
. Had temper'd with a melancholy tinge." 

Her voice, was becommg more and more weak, she said, eo «h6 nrast be 
prompt *<Yoa have some trinkets for me, Mr. Cringle ?" 1 presented 
them. She ktaAed the cracifix fervently, and then looked mournftiUy on her 
own mii\iatare. ," This was thought like cnce<, Mr. (iringle. — Arc the 
newspaper accounts of his trial correct W she next asked. [ answered, 
that in the main facts tb<^ veere. " And do you believe in the commission 
of all these alleged atrocities by him ?" 1 remained ailent ** Yes, they are 
bat too true. Hush, hush," said she — "look there^" 

1 did as -she requested. There, glancing bright in the sun^ine, a 
most beautiful butterfly fluttered in the air, in the* very middle of the open 
window. When we first* saw it, it wa9 flitting ^yly and happily, among 
the plants and flowers that were blooming in the balcony, but it gradually 
became more and more slow on the wing, and at last poised itself so ixn- 
mnally steadily for an insect of its class, XhaX even had Maria not spoken, it 
would have attracted my attention. Below it, on the window sill, near the 
wall, ynth head ei;ect, and its little basilisk eyes upturned toward^ the 
lovely fly, crouched a cameleon lizard: its beautiful body, when I first 
looked at it, was a bright sea-green. It moved into the sunshine, a little 
away from the shade m the laurel bush, which grew on the side it first ap« 
peared on, and suddenly the back became transparent amber, the legs and 
belly continuing green. From its breast under the chin, it every now and 
then shot out a semicircular film of a bright scarlet colour, Hke a leaf of a 
tulip stretched vertically, or tlie pect6ral fin of a fish. 

This was evidently a decoy, and the poor fly was by degrees drawn 
down towards it, either under the impression of its being in reality a flower, 
or impelled by some impulse which it could not resist. It gradually flut^ 
tered nearer and more near, the reptile remaining Hi the while steady as a 
stone, until it made a. sudden spring, and in the ntsxt moment the small 
mefldly wings were qiWering on each side of the camdeon's tiny jaws. 
While in the act of gorgmg its prey, a little fork, like a wire, was projected 
from ||ie opposite comer of the window ; presently a small round black 
snout, with a pair of little fiery blasting eyes, appeared, and a thin black 
■neck glanced in the sun. The lizard saw it. I could fancy it trembled. 
Its body became of a dark blue, then ashy pale ; the imitation of the flower, 
the gaudy fin, was withdrawn, it appeared to shrink back as far as it could, 
bat It was nailed or fasdnated to the window sill, for its feet did no move. 
The head of the 'snake approached, with its long forked tongue shooting 
out and shortening, and with a low hissing noise. By this time about two 
feet of its body was visible, lying with its white belly on the Wooden beam, 
SBo>vmg forward with a small horizontal wavy motion, the head and six 



ftO VOM CmUfGLE's XiO«« 



iaekaioftli»B«ckb«iBcaliUienused» lBhrttnkbafikfrom&eMrpcii(;M 
no one else seemed to nave any dread of it ; indeed, I afterwards leaiQedf 
tiiat this kind, being good moosers, and o&erwise quite harmless, were, if 
•nything, encooimged about houses in the country. I looked again ; iUi 
4pell moatk was bow witbiii ap iiich of the lizaid, which bj.this tisie 
soMsed utterly paralysed and motionless ; the next instant its head was 
drawn into iJhe snake's mouth, and by d«!^iees the whole bodv disappeared, 
as the reptile eorged it, and I could percenre from the lump which ^adusUy 
moved down uke snake's neck, that it had been sucked into its stomad. 
Involuntarily I raised ipy hand, when the whole suddenly disappeared 

I turned, I could scarcely telT why, to look at the dying girl. A transiait 
flush had amn lit up her pale* wasted face. She was evidently gna&j 
excited. «Can you read me that riddle, Mr. Cringle? Does no analogy 
present itself to yop between what you have seen, Mtween the mysteiioiiB 
power possessed by tiiese subtle reptUes, and— Look — look again." 

A large and stUf more lovely butterfly suddenly rose from beneath where 
the snake had vanished, all jittering in the daaraHn^ sunshine, and after 
iattefing for a moment, floated stsa&y up into the air,' and disi^ppeared in 
ll|e blue sky. My eye followed it as long as it was visible^ and when it 
onee mosa dedined to where we had seen the snake, J saw a most iqito- 
did dragonfly, about fluree inches loa& like a ^Iden bodkin, with ita gaue- 
like wings moving so quickly, m it bung steadily poised in mid* sir, like a 
hawk preparing to ttoag, that the body seemed to be sutropnded by silier 
tissue, or a bright halo« while it gbilced in the sunbeam. 

<<Can you not read it yet, Mr. Cringle 1 Can you not read my story in 
the fate of the first beautiful fly, and £e miserable end of my Fedenco, id 
that of the Uzard 7 And oh, may the last appearance of that ethereal thing, 
which but now rose, and melted into the lovely sky, be a true type of what 
I shall be * But that poor insect, that remains there suspendled betweea 
heaven and earth, shall I say hell, what'am I to think of it?" 

The dragonfly was still there. She continued — ** En pur^ttioriaf ah DkUt 
fu quedas $n ^^ffotoriOf^ as if the % bad represented me unhappy young 
pirn's soul m Umbo. Oh, let no one smile at the qui^ntness'ot the dying 
fancy of the poor heait-crushed giri. The weather began to lower agiiin, 
the wind came past us meaningly — the sun was obscured — large drops 
of rain fell heavily into the room— a sudden dazding flash of hgfatniag 
took place, and the dragonfiu was no longer there. A long low wild cry was 
heard. I started, and my flesh creeped. The cry was repeated. ^Etd 
— d mimnOf y ningun otro^ Me venga, Federieof me venga, mi queridel" 
shrieked poor Maria, with a supernatural energy, and with such piercing 
.distinctness that it was heard stuill even above me rolling thimder. 

I turned to look at Maria — another flash. - It glanced on the arudiz 
which the old priest had elevated at the foot of the bed, foil i|i her view. It 
was nearer, the thunder was louder. ** Is that the rain-drops which are 
falling heavily on the' floor through the open window ?" Ok Qod ! Oh 
God ! it is her warm hearts bloo^ which was Mibbling from her moath 
like a crimson fountain. Her pale fingers were clasped on her bosom ia 
the attitude of prayer — a gentle quiver of her frame — and the poor jj^idcea- 
heaited girl, and lier unborn babe, " sleeped the sleep that knows no wak- 
infr" 



fOM cringle's lo«. 21 i 



CHAPTER XIV. 

SOBKKd IN GVBA^ 

jBriel. ' ' ' Safely l»i harbour 

1a the king's ship ; in the deep nook, where onca 
Thou call'dst me up at midnight to fetch dew 
From the still- vexed Bermoothes — there she's hid. 

The Tempest. 

Thv spirit bad. indeed fled — the ethereal essence had departed— < and 
the poor wasted and blood-stained husk- which lay before us could no lon- 
g|er be moved by pur sorrows, or gratified by our sympathy. Yet I stood 
riveted to the spot, iintU I was aroused by the deep-toned voice of Padre 
Carera, whe$ lifitmg up his hands towards heaven, addressed the Almi^ty 
in extempore prayelr, beseeching his mercy to our erring sister who had just 
departed. The unusualness <m this startled me. <<As the tfee falls, so 
must it lie," had been the creed of my forefathers, and was mine ;^ but now 
for the first time I heard a clergyman wrestling in mental agony, and inter- 
ceding with the <jrod who hath scud, *' Repeiit before the night cometh, in 
which QO man can work,'' for a sinful creature, whose wom>out frame was 
now as a clod of the valley. . But I had little time for consideration, as pres- 
ently all the negro servantsWof the establishment set up a loud howl, as if 
tkey had lost their nearest and dearest. ** Oh, our poor dear young mis- 
tress is dead ! She has gone to the bosom of the virmn ! She is gone to 
be happy !'' — " Then why the deuce make such a yelling ?" quoth Bang 
in the other room, when this had been translated to him. Glad to leave 
the chamber of death, I entered the large hall, where I had left our friend. 

" I say, Tom — awiful work. Hear now tbe rain pours, and — murder 
— such a flash I Why, in Jamaica, we don't startle greatly at lightning, 
but absolutely I heard it hiss — there, again" — the noise of the thunder 
Btopped- farther colloquy, and the wind now burst down the valley with a 
loud roar. 

Don Ripardo joined us. "j^j good friends — we are in a scrape here 
-* what is to be done ? — a melancli^Iy affidr altogether." Bang's curiosity 
here fairly got the better of him, 

" I say, Don Ricardibus — do — beg pardon, though — do give over this 
humbugging outlandish lingo of yours — speak like a. Christian, in your 
mother tongue, and leave oS* your Spanish, which now, since I know it is 
&llafram,.seems to sit as strangely on you as my grandmother'stoup^e 
Would on TomCrinrie's Mary." 

"Now do- pray, Mr. Bang," said I, when Don Ricardo broke in — 

" Why, Mr. Bang, I am, as you now know, a.Scotchman," 

" How do 1 know any suoh thing — that is for a certainty — while you 
ke^ cruising among so many lingoes, as Tom there says ?" 

" The doeken, man," said !.. Don Ricardo smiled. 

"lam a Scotchman, my dear sir; and the same person who, in his 
youth, was neitlier more nor less than wee Richy Cloche, in the long town 
of Kirkaldy, and in his old age Don Ricardo Campana of St Jago de Cuba. 
But more of this anon, — at present we are in the house of mourning, and 
alas the day ! that it should be so." 

By this time the storm had increased most fearfully, and as Don Ricardd, 
Aaron, and myself, sat in the dark damp corper of the large gloomy hall, we 
could scarcely see each other, for the lightning had now ceased, ana the 

46—1 



913 TOM cRiireLs's loo. 

darkness was so tluck, that bad it not been for the light from the large 
funereal wax tapers, which had been instantly lit upon poor Marians death, 
in the room where she lay, that streamed through the open door, we should 
have been unable to see our very fingers before us. 
" What is that ?" said Campana ; << heard you nothing, gentlemen ?" 

' By this the storm grew loud apace, 
The water-wraith was shrieking ; 
And in the scowl of heaven each face 
Grew dark es thev were speaking.** 

In the lulls of the rain and the blast, the same long low cry was heard 
which had startled me by Maria's bedside, and occasioned the sudden and 
fatal exertion which had been the cause of the bursting out afresh of tbe 
blood-vessel. 

" Why,*' said 1, "it is little more than three o'clock in the afternoon yet, 
dark as it is ; let us sally out, Mr. Bang, for I verily believe that the hollo 
we have heard is my captain's voice, and, if I conjecture rightly, he must 
have arrived at the other side of the river, probably with'tHe doctor," 

"Why, Tom,'* quoth Aaron, "it m only three m the afternoon, as you 
say, althouj^h by the sky I could almost youcl) for its being mi^ni^t, — 
but I don't like that sho^^ting — Did you ever read of a water-kelpie, Don 

"Poo, poo, nonsense,'* said the Don; "Mr. Cringle is, I fear, right 
enough.*' At this moment the wind thundered at the door and window- 
shutters, and howled among the neighbouring H'ees and round the roof, as 
if it would have blown the house down upon our devoted heads. The cry 
was again heard, during a momentary pause. 

" Zounds !*' said Bang, " it is the skipper's voice, as sore as fate — be 
must be in dinger — let us go and see, Tom." 

" Take me with you," said Campana, the foremost always when any 
good deed was to be done, — and, m place of clapping on his great-coat 
to meet the storm, to our unutterable surprise, he began lio disrobe himself, 
all to his trousers and large straw hat He then called one of the servants, 
" TroR me un ZflW*o." The lassOf a long thong of plaited hide, was forth- 
with brought ; he coiled it up in his lefl hand. " Now Pedro," said he to 
the negro servant who had fetched it, (a tall strapping fellow,) " you and 
Gaspar follow me. Gentleman, are you ready ?" Gaspar appeared, prop- 
erty accoutred, with a long pole in one hand, and a thong similar to Don 
Ricardo's in the other, he as well as bis comrade being stark naked all to 
their waist-clothes. " Ah, well done, my sons," said Don Ricardo, as both 
the negroes prepared to follow him. So off we started to the" door, although, 
we heard the tormenta raging without with appalling fury. Bang undid 
the latch, and the next moment he was flat on his back, the large leaf hav- 
ingflown open with tremendous violence, capsizing him like an infant. 

The padre from the inner chamber came to our assistance, and by our 
joint exertions we at length got the door to again and barricaded, alter 
which we made our exit from the led-side of the house by a window. Under 
other circumstances, it would have been difficult to refrain from laughing 
at the appearance* we made. We were all drenched in an instant after we 
left the shelter of the house, and there was old Campana, naked to the 
waist, with his large sombrero and long pi^^ail hanging down his back, 
like a mandarin of twenty buttons. Next followed his two black assist* 
ants, naked as I have described them, all three with their coils of rope in 
their hands, like a hangman and his deputies ; then advanced iriend Bang 
and myself, without our coats qr hats, with handkerchiefs tied round our 



TOM cringle's loo. 218 

heads, and our bodies bent down so as to stem the gale as stfongly as we 
could. 

But the planting attorney, a great schemer, a kind of Will Wimble in 
his way, had thought fit, of all things in the world, to bring his umbrella, 
which the wind, as might have been expected, reversed most unceremoni- 
ously the moment he attempted to hoist it, and tore it from the staff, so 
that, on the impulse of the moment, he had to clutch the flying red silk and 
thrust his head through the centre, where the stick had stood, as if he had 
been some curious flower. As we turned die corner of the nouse, the full 
'force of the storm met us right in the teeth, when flap flew Don Ricardo's 
hat past us ; but the two blackamoors had taken the precaution to strap 
each of theirs down with a strong grass lanyard. We continued to work 
to windward, while every now and then the hollo came past us on the gale 
louder and louder, until it guided us to the fording which w.e had crossed, 
on our arrival. We stopped there ; — the red torrent was rushing tumul- 
tuously past us, but we saw nothing save a few wet and shivering negroes 
on the Opposite side, who had sheltered themselves under a cliff, and were 
busily employed in attempting to light a fire. The holloing continued. 

" VVhy, what can be wrong ?" at length said Don Ricardo, and he shouted 
to the people on the opposite side. 

He might as well have spared his breath, for, although they saw his ges- 
tures andthe motion of his lips, they no more heard him than we did them, 
as they very considerately in return made mouths at us, bellowing no doubt 
that they could not hear us. 

"Don Ricardo — Don Ricardo ?" at this crisis sung out Gaspar, who 
had clambered up the rock, to have a peep about him, — "*3«c Maria -^ 
JiUa son dos pohres^ que peresquem pronto^ si nosotros no pueden ayudarlosJ^ 

" Whereabouts ?" said Campana — " whereabouts ? speak, man, speak." 

" Down in the valley — about a quarter of a league, I see two men on a 
large rock, in the middle of the stream j the wind is m that direction, it must 
be them we heard." 

"God be Gracious tons! true enough -« true enough, — let us go to 
them, then, my children." And we again all cantered off afl;er the excellent 
Don Ricardo. But before we could reach the spot, we had to make a de* 
touTy and come down upon it from the precipitous brow of the beetling 
cliff above, for there was no beach nor shore to the swollen river, which 
was here very deep, and surged, rushing under the hollow bank with 
comparatively little noise, which was the reason why we heard the cries so 
distinctly. 

The unfortunates, who were in peril, whoever they might be, seemed to 
comprehend our motions, for oiie of them held out a white handkerchief, 
which I immediately answered by a similar signal, when the shouting 
ceased, until, guided by the negroes, we reached the verge of the cliff, and 
looked down from the red crumbUng bank on the foaming water, as it 
swept past beneath. It was here about thirty yards broad, divided by a 
rocky wedgelike islet, on which grew a profusion of dark bushes and one 
Wge tree, whose topmost branches were on a level with us where we , 
stood. This tree was divided, about twelve feet from the root, into two 
limbs, in the fork of which sat, like abi^ monkey, no less a personage than 
CaDtairi Transom himself, wet and dripping, with his clotnes besmeared 
with mud, and shivering with cold. At the foot of the tree sat, in rueful 
inood, a small antique beau of an old man, in a coat which had once been 
blue silk, wearing breeches, the original colour of which no man could 
^ilf and without his wig, his clear bald pate shining amidst the sur- 
rounding desolation like an ostrich's egg. Beside these worthies stood two 
Ambling way-worn mules with flrooping heads, their long ears hanging 



til TOM Ci^IKGLS's LOG. 

dow*i most disconsolately* • The moment we came in sight, the skipper 
hailed us. 

*< Why, I am hoarse with bawling, Don Ricardo, but here am I and el 
Doctor Pavo Real, in as sorry a plight as any two gentlemen need be. On 
attempting to ford two hours ago, blockheads as we were — beg pardon, 
Don Pavo" — the doctor bowed, and grinned like a baboon-^*' we had 
nearly been drowned; indeed, we should have been drowned entirely, 
had we not brought up on this island of Batataria here.. — But how is toe 
youngs lad^ ? tell me that,'* said the exceUent-hearted fellow, erven in the 
nudst of his own danger. 

" Mind yowrselff my beautiful child," cried Bang. *' How are we to get 
yoti on terra firma V^ 

<* Poo — in the easiest way possible," rejoined he, with true searaanlike 
self-possession. " I see you have ropes ^-' Tom Cringle, heave me the «id 
of the line which Don Ricardo carries, will you?" 

"' No, no — I can do that myself," said Don Ricaido, and with a swine 
he hove the l^them noose at the skipper, and wliipped it over his neck 
in a twinkling. The Scotch Spaniard, I saw, was pluming himself 
on his skill, but Transom was up to 'him, for in an instant he dropped 
out of it, while in slipping through he let it fall over a brokeh limb of 
the tree. 

** Such an eel — such an eel !" shouted the attendant negroes, both expert 
hands with ihe 2a«5o themselves. 

*^ Now, Don Ricardo, since I am not to be had, make your end of the 
thong fast round the large stone there." Campana did so. *' Ah, that will 
do." And so saying, the skipper waiped himself to the top of the diff 
with great agility. He was no sooner m safety himself, however, than the 
idea of having left the poor doctor in peril flashed on him. 

'* I must return — ^I must return ! if the river rises, the 6ody will be drowned 
out and out" 

And notwithstanding our entreaties, he did return as he came, and 
descending- the tree, began apparently to argue with the little meMw^ 
and to endeavour to persuade him to ascend, and make his escape as he 
himself had done ; but it would not do. Pavo Real --: as b^ve a little . 
man as ever was seen — made many salaams and obeisances, but move 
he would not He shook his head, repeatedly, in a very solemn - way, 
as if he had said, ^ My very excellent friends, I am much obliged to you, 
but it is impossible ; my^ dignity would be compromised by such a pro- 
ceeding." 

Presently Transom appeared to wax very emphatic, and pointed to a 
pinnacle oi limestone rock, which had stoed out like a ^mall steeple above 
the surface of the flashing dark red eddies, when we .first arrived on the 
spot, but now only stopped the water with a loud gurgle, the top rising and 
disappearing as tne stream surged past, like a buoy joug/ing* in a tideway. 
The small man still shook his head, but the water now rose so rapidly, that 
there was scarcely dry standing room for the two poor devils of mules, while 
the doctor and Uie skipper haa the gieateet difficulty in fmding a footing for 
themselves. 

Time and circumstances began to press, and Transom, after another un- 
availing attempt to persuade the doctor, began apparently to rouse himself, 
and muster his energies.. He first drove the mules forcibly into the streaih 
at the aide opposite where we stood, which was the deepest water, and the 
least broken by rocks and stones, and we had the pleasure to see them 
scramble out safe and sound ; he then put his hand to his mouth, and 
hailed us to throw him a rope — it was done — he caught it, and then by a 
ngnificaat gesture to Campana, gave him to understand that now was the 
time. The Don, comprehen^g him, hove his noose with great precisioni 



TOH cringle's loo. 315 

tight orer the little doctor's head, and before he recovered from his surprise, 
the captain slipped it under his arms, and signed to haul taut, while the 
medico kicked, and spurred, and backed like a restive horse. At one and 
the same moment, Transom made fast a ^uy round his waist, and we 
hoisted away, while he hauled on the other Ime, so that we landed the Lil- 
^ liputian Es<;ulapius safe en the top of the bank, with the wind nearly out 
<»t his body, however, from his violent exertions, and the running of the 
noose. 

a • 

It was now the work of a moment for the captain to ascend the tree and 
a^m warp himself ashore, when he set himself to apologize with all his 
imght and main, pleading strong necessity ; and having succeeded in paci- 
fying the ofTeodea dignity of. the doctor, we turned towards the house. 

'*Look out there,'' sun^ out Campana sharply. 

Time indeed, thought!, for right ahead of us, as if an invisible gigantic 

ploughshare had passed over the woods, a valley or chasm was suddenly 

opened down the hill-side with a noise Uke thunder, and branches and 

whole limbs of trees were instantly torn away, and tossed into the air like 

'Straws. 

** Down on your noses, my fine fellows," cried the skipper. We were 
.all flat in an instant except the medicOf the stubborn little brute, wlio stood 
uixtil the tornado reached him^when in a twinkling he was cast on his back, 
-with a violence sufficient, as I thought, to have driven his breath for ever 
and aye out of his .body. While we lay we heard all kinds of things 
hurtle past us through the ahr, pieces of timber, branches of trees, cofiee- 
hushes, add even stones. Presently it lulled again, and we got on end to 
. look round us. 

«* How will the old house stand all this, Don Ricardo ?" said the drench- 
ed skipper. He had to .shout to be heard. The Don was too busy to an- 
il wer, but once mpre strode on towards the dwelling, as if he expected 
something even worse than we had experienced to be still awaiting us. By 
the time we reached it, it was full of negroes, men, women, and children, 
w^hose huts had already been destroyed, poor, drenched, miserable devils, 
ivith scarcely any clothing ; and to crown our comfort, we found the roof 
leaking in many places. By this time the night began to falf, and our 
prospects were far from flattering. The rain had entirely ceased, nor was 
^ there any lightning, but the storm was most tremendous, blowing in gusts, 
and veering round from east to north with the speed of thought. The force 
of the gale, however, gradually declined, until the wind subsided altogether, 
and everything became quite still. The low murmured conversation of the 
poor negroes who environed us, was heard distinctly ; the hard breathing 
of the sleeping children could even be distinguished. But I was by no 
mean^ sure that the hurricane was over, and Don Ricardo and the rest 
seemed to think as I did, for there was not a word interchanged between us 
for some time. , 

**Do you hear that ?" at length said Aaron •Bang, as a low moaning 
sound rose wailing in the night air. It approached and ^ew louder. 

." The voice of the approaching tempest among the higher branches of 
the trees," said the captain. 

' The rushing noise overhead increased, but still all was so calm where we 
sat, that you could have heard a pin drop. Poo, thought I, it has passed 
over us after all — no fear now, when one reflects bov completely sheltered 
we are. Suddenly, however, the lights in the room where the body lay 
were blown out, and the roof groaned and creaked as if it had been the 
bulkheads of a ship in a tempestuous sea. 

** We sha>l have to cut.and run from this anchorage presently, after all," 
said I ; " the house will never hold on till morning." 

The words were scarcely out of my mouth, when, as if a thunderbolt 

1* ' 



916 VOM CRiirGLx's roo* 

. had struck it, one of the windows in the hall waa driven in with a roar, as 
if the Falls of Niagara had been pouring overhead|'and the temjpest having 
thus forced an entrance, the roof of that part of the house where we sat 
was blowq up, as if by gunpowder — ay, in the twinkling ol an eye ; and 
there we were with the bare waRa, and the angry heaven overhead, and 
the rain descending in bucketfuls. Fortunately, two large joists or couples, 
being dneply imbedded in the substance of Ihe walls, 'remained when the 
rafters and ridgepole were torn away, or we must h^ve been crashed in tlie 
ruins. 

There was again a deathlike lull, the wind fell to a small melanchoty 
sough among the tree-tops, and once nM>re, where we sat, there was not a 
breath stirrins. So complete was the calm now, that after a light had been 
struck, and placed on the floor in the middle of the room, Ishowing the sur- 
rounding group of shivering half-naked savsiges, with fearful distinctaess, 
the flame shot up straight as an arrow, clear and bright, although the dis- 
tant roar of the ^orm still thundered afar off as it rushed over the mountain 
above us. 

This unexpected stillness frightened the women even more than the fierce- 
ness of the gale^when at the loudest had diDue. 

*' We must go forth,*' said Senora Cannana ; *' the elements are only 
gathering themselves for a more dreadful hurricane than whatjwe have 
already experienced. We must go forth to the little chapel in the wood, or 
the next burst may, and will, buiy us under the wall's ;" and she moved 
towards Maria's room, where, by this time, lights had again been placed. 
** We must move the bod^," we could hear her say ; *< we musfaU proceed, 
to the chapel ; in a few minutes the storm will be raging again louder'than 
ever." 

" And my wife is very right,'* said Don Ricardo ; " so, Gaspar, call the 
other people ; htlve some mats, and quatreSf and riiattrasses carried dovm 
to the chapel, and we shall all remove, for, with half of the roof , gone, it is 
but .tempting the Almighty to remain here longer." 

The word was passed, and we were soon under weigh, four negroes lead- 
ing the van, carrying the uncoflined body of t\^e poor girl on a sofa ; while 
two servants, with lar^e splinters ora sort of resinous wood for flanibeaniL 
walked by the side of it Next followed the women of the family, covered 
up with all the cloaks and spare ^rmente that could be collected ; then 
came Don Picador Cangrejo, with Ricardo Campana, the skipper, Aaron 
Bang, and-^ myself ; the procession being closed by the household negroes, 
with more lights, which all burned steadily and clear. 

We descended through a magniflcent natural avenue of lof^y trees 
(whose brown moss-grown trunks and fantastic boughs were strongly lit 
up by the blaze of the torches ; while the fresh white sj^inter-marks, where 
the branches had been torn t>frby the storm, glanced bright and deaf)' and 
the rain drops on the dark leaves sparkled like diamonds) towards the river, 
along whose brink the bfimfiil red foaming waters rushed past us, close by 
the ed^e of the path, now ebbing suddenly a foot or so, and then surging 
up agam beyona their former bounds, as if large stones or trunks of trees 
above, were from time to time damming up the .troubled waters, and then, 
giving way. Afler walking about four hundred yards, we came to a small 
but massive chapel, fronting the river, the back part resting against a rocky 
bank, with two superb cypress trees growing, one on each side of the door : > 
we entered, Padre Carera leading the way. The whole area of the interior 
of the buildiirg did not exceed a parallelogram of twenty feet by twelve. 
At the eastern end, fronting the door, there was a small altar-piece of hard 
wood, richly ornamented with silver, and one or two bare wooden benches 
standing on the tiled floor ; but the chief security we had that the building 
would withstand the storm, consisted in its having no window or aper- 



TOM CBINGLl's tOO. $17 

ture whatsoever, excepting two small p&rtSf one on each side of the altar- 
]»ece, and the door, which Was a massive frame of hard-wood planking. 

The body was deposited at the foot of the altar, and the ladies, having 
been wrapped up in cloak ^ and blankets, were safely lodged in quatres, 
while we, the gentlemen of the comfortless party, seated ourselves, discon- 
solately enou^, on the wooden benches. 

The door was made fast, after the servants had kindled a blazing wood- 
fire on the floor ; dnd althoif^h the flickering light cast by the wax tapprs 
in the six large silver candlesticks which were planted beside the bier, as it 
^m^nded with the red glare of the fire, and fell strong on the pale uncovered 
features of the corpse, and on the anxious faces of the women, was often 
startling enough, yet beihg conscious of a certain degree of security from 
the thickness of the walls, we made vfp our minds to spend the nijght where 
we- were, as well as we dbuld. 

** I say, Tom Cringle," .said Aaron Bang, "all the females are sriug 
thero, you see ; we have a blazing fire on the nearth, and here is some com- 
fort for loe men slaves ;*' whereupon he produced two bottles of brandy. 
Don Ric^rdo Campana, with whom Bang seemed now to be absolutely in 
league, or, in vulgar phrase, as thick as pick-pockets, had brought a goblet 
of water, and a small silver drinking cup with him ; so we passed the creo- 
twre round, and tried all we could to while away the tedious night. But, 
aa if a sudden thought had struck Aaron, he here tucked the brandy bottle 
under his arm, and asking' me to cany the vessel with the water, he ad- 
vanced, cup in hand; towards the ladies — 

" Now, Tom, interpret carefully.'* 

<' Ahem -~ Madam and Senoras, this is a heavy night for all of us, but 
the chapel is damp — allow me to comfort you." 

** M\ichis\mo3 gracias,^^ was the gratifying answer, and Ban^ accordingly 
gave each of our fair friends a heart-warming taste of brandy and water. 
There was now a calm for a fiill hour, and the captain had stepped out to 
reconnoitre ; on his return he reported tiiat the swollen fltream had very 
much subsided. 

<« Well we shall get away, I hope, to-morrow morning, after all," whis- 
pered Bang. 

He had scarcely spoken when it began to pelt and nun again, as if a 
waterspout had burst overhead, but there was no wind. 

*' Come, that is the clearing up of it," said Cloche. 

At this precise moment the~ priest was sitting with folded lirms, beyond 
the body, on a stool or tressel, in the alcove or Tecess where it lay. Right 
overhead was one of the small round apertures in the gable of the chapel, 
which, opening on the bank, appeared to the eye a round black spot in the 
white- washed wall. The bright wax-Ughts shed a strong lustre on the 
worthy clerigd's figure, face, and fine bald head, which shone hke silver, 
while the deeper light of the embers on the floor was reflected in ruby .tints 
from the large silver. crucifix that hung at his waist The rashing of the 
swollen river prevented me hearing distinctly, but it occurred to nie once 
or twice, that a strange gurgling sound proceeded from the aforesaid round 
aperture. ^ The pndre seemed to hear it, also, for every now and then he 
looked up, and once he rose and peered anxiously through it ; but appa- 
rently unable to distinguish anything, he sat down again. However, m^ 
attention had been excited, and half asleep as I was, I kept glimmering in 
the direction of the clerigo. ' 

The captain's deep snore had gradually lengthened out, so as to vouch 
for his forgetfulness, and Bang, Ricardo, Dr. Pavo Real, and the ladies, had 
aH subsided into the most perfect quietude, when 1 noticed, and I quaked 
and trembled like an aspen leaf as I did so, a long black paw, thrust through 
and dowa from the dark aperture immediately over Padre Garera*8 head, 



318 TOM cringle's log. 

which, whatever it was, it appeared to scratch sharply, and then giving the 
camU a smart cuff, vanished. The priest started, put up his hand, and 
rubbed his head, but seeing nothing, again leaaed back, and was about de- 
parting to the land of no(2, like the others, once more. However, in a few 
minut'S, the same paw again protruded, and this time a peering black 
snout, with two glancing eyes, was thrust through the hole after it. The 
paw kept swinging about like a pendulum for a tew seconds, and was then 
suddenly thrust into the padre's open mouth as he lay back asleep, and 
again giving him another smart crack, vanished as before. 

" Hobble, -gobble.*' gurgled the priest, nearly choked. 

" w^oe. Marioy pKirtsnma que bocado — what a mouthful ! — What can tiiat 
be?" 

This was mqre than T knew, I must confess, and altogether I wtfs con- 
summately puzzled, but, from a disinclination to alarm the women, I held 
my tongtie. Padre Carera this time moved away to the other side from 
beneath the bole, but still within two feet of it — in fact, he couM not get in 
this direction farther for the altar-piece — and being still half asleep, he lay 
back once more against the wall to finish his nap, taking the precaution, 
however, to clap on his long shovel hat, shaped like a small canoe, cross- 
wise, with the peaks standing out from each si4e of his head, in place of 
wearing it fore and aft, as usual. Well, thought 1, a "strange party cer- 
tainly ; but drowsiness was fast settling down on me also, when the same 
black paw was again thrust through the hole, and I distinctly heard a 
nuzzling, whinin^, short bark. I rubbed my eyes and sat* up, but belbre I 
was quite awake, the head and neck of a large. Newfoundland dog was 
shoved into the chapel through the round aperture, and makiitg a long 
stretch, with the black paws thrust do\yn and resting on the wall, support- 
ing the creature, the ammal suddenly snatched the padre^s hat off his head, 
and giving it aii ans-y Worry — as much ta to say, " Confoun4.it *—- 1 had 
hoped to nave had the head in it ^ — it dropped it^on the floor, aiid with a 
loud yell. Sneezer, my own old dear Sneezer, leaped into the midst of us, 
floundfering among the sleeping women, and kicking tlie firebrands about, 
making them hiss again with the water he shook from his shaggy coat, and 
frightening all hands like the very devil. 

"Sneezer, you villain, how came j^ou. here!" I exclaimed- in great 
amazement — "How came you here, sir?" The dog knew me at once, 
and when benches were reared against him, afler the woman had huddled 
into a corner, and everything was in sad' confusion, he ran to me, and leap- 
ed on my neck, gasping and yelping ; but finding that I was an^ry, and m 
no mooa for toying, he planted himself on end so suddenly, in the middle 
of the floor, close by the fire, that all our hands were stayed, and no one 
could find in his heart to strike the poor dumb brute, he sal so quiet and 
motionless. " Sneezer, my boy, what have you 'to Bay — where have you 
come from ?" H,e looked in the direction of the door, and then walked de- 
libierately towards it, and tried to open it with his paws. 

" Now," said the captain, " thlat little scamp, who would insist on riding 
with me to St Jago, to see, as he said, if he might not. be of use in fetch- 
ing the surgeon m>m the ship in casQ I could not find Dr. Bergara, has 
come back, although I desired him to stay on board. The puppy must 
have returned in his cursed troublesome. zeal, for in no other way could your 
dog be here. Certainly, however, he did not know that 1 had fallen in with 
Dr. Pavo Real ;" and the good-natured fellow's heart melted, as he con- 
tinued — «* Returned — why he may be drowned — • Cringle, take care little 
Reefpoint be not drowned." 

Sneezer lowered his black snout, and for a moment poked it into the 
white ashes of the fire, and then raising it and sti-etcbing bis neck upwards 
to its full length, he gave a short bark, and then a long loud (lowL 



ffOM CmiNGL£'s LOG. Sift 

" My life upon it, the poor boy is gone," said 1. 
** But what can we do )" said Don Ricardo ; << it is as dark as pitch." 
And Mre again set ourselves to have a small rally at the brandy and water, 
as a resolver of our doubts, whether we should sit still till daybreak, or 
Ballr forth now and run the chance of being drowned, with but small hope 
of doing any good ; and the old priest having left the other end of tne 
chapel, where the ladies were once more reposing, now came to join our 
council of war, and to have his share o( the agtta ardiente. 

The noise df the rain increased, and there was still a little pufi* of wind 
now and then, so that the padre, taking an alfombra, or small mat, used to 
kneel on, and placing it on the step where the folding doors opened inwards, 
took a doak on his shoulders, and set himself down with his back against 
the leaves, to keep them closed, as the lock or bolt was broken, and was in 
the act of swiping off his cupful of comfort, when a strong gust drove the 
door open, as if the devil himself had kick e^ it, capsized the padre, blew 
out the lights once more, and scattered the brands if the fire all-out us. 
Transom and I started up, the women shrieked ; but before we could get 
the door to again, in rode little Reefpoint on a mule, with the doctor of the 
Firebrand' behind him, bound, or lashed, as we call it, to him by a strong 
thong. The black servants and the females took them for incarnate fiends^ 
I fkncy, for the yhWa an'd shrieks thev set up were tremendous. 

''Yo ho !". 'sung out little Reefy; donH be frightened, ladies — Lord 
love ye, I am halfdrowped, and the doctor here is altogether so — quite en- 
tirely drowned,* I assure you. — I say. Medico, an't it true ?" And the Uttle 
Irish ro^e slewed his head round, and gave the exhausted doctor a most 
comicallook. 

*'Not quite,*Vqu6th the doctor, "but deuced near it. I say, Captain, 
would you have known 4IS ? why, we are dyed chocolate colour, you see, 
in that river, flgtjving not with milk and honev, but with something miracu- ' 
lously like pease-soup — water I cannot call it." 
'< But Heaven help us, why did you try the ford, man !" said Bans. 
" You may say tuat, sir," responded wee Reefy ; " but our mule was 
knocked up, and it was so dark and tempestuous, that we should have peiv 
ished by the road if he had tried back for St Jago ; so seeing a light here, 
the only indication of a Uving thing, and the stream looking narrow and 
oomparatively quiet— confound it, it was all the deeper though -^ we shoved 
across." 

''But, bless me, if you had been thrown in the stream, lashed together 
as you are, you would have been droWned to a certain^^," said the cap- 
tain. 

'* Oh," said-little Reefy, " the doctor was not on the mule in crossing — 
no, no, Captain, I knew better — I had him in tow, sir; but afler we 
crossed he was so fount and chill, that I had to lash myself to him to keep 
him from sliding over the animal's counter, and walk he.cotild not" 

'* But, Master Reefpoint, why came you back 1 did I not desire you to 
remain en board the Ji'irebrand, sir ?" 

The midshipman looked nonplussed, "Why, Captain, I forgot to take 
my clethes with me, and — and — in truth, su*, I thought oUr surgeon 
would be of more use than any outlandish gailipot thatyou could carry 
back." 

The good intentions of the lad saved him farther reproof, although I could 
not help smiling at his coming back for his clothes, when his whole ward- 
robe on starting was confined to the two false collars and a tooth-brush. 
" But where is the young lady ?" said the doctor 

" Beyond your help, my dear doctor," said the skipper ; " she is dead-^ 
all that remains of her you see within that small railing there." 
i, « Ah, mdeed ! " quoth the medico j " poor girl — poor gurl — deep decline — 



3S0 tOM cringle's £.06. 

wajsted, teiribly wasted,*' said he, as he returned from the railing of the 
altar-piece, where he had been to look down upon the body; and then, as 
if] there never had been such a being as poor Maria Oiiveram existence, he 
continued, "Pray, Mr. Bang, what may you have in that bottle ?*» . 

" Brandy, to be sure, doctor," said Bang. 

" A thimbleful then, if you please." 

** By all means " — > and the planting attorney handed the black bottle to 
the surgeon, who applied it to his lips without more circamlocution. 

"Xiord love us ! — poisoned — On, gemini !" 

" Why, Doctor," said Transom, " what has come over you V* 

** Poisoned, Captain — only taste.*' 

The bottle contained soy. It was some time before we could get the poor 
man quieted ; and when at length he was stTetchejd along a bench, and the 
fire stirred up, and ilew wood added to it, the fresh air of early morning be- 
gan to be scented. At this time we missed Padre Carera, and, in truth, 
we all feU fast asleep jjbut in about an houf or so afterwards, I was awoke 
by some one stepping across me. The same cause had stirred Tran^som. 
It was Aaron Bang, who had been to look out at the door. 

"I say. Cringle, look here — the padre and the servants are digging a 
grave close to the chapel — are they going to bury ihp poor girl so sud- 
denly?*' . ' 

I stepped to the door ; the Wind had entirely fallen — but it rained very 
fast — the small chapel door looked out on the stitewoUen, but subsiding 
river, and beyond that on the mountain, which rose abrnptly from tiie op^ 
posite bank. On the side of the hill facing us was situated a negro village, of 
about thirty huts, where lights wei» already twinkling, as if the in^at^ 
were preparing to go forth to their work. Far above them, op the ridge, 
there was a clear cold streak towards the east, against which the outline of 
the mountain, aild the large trees which grew on it, were shstrply cut out ; 
but overhead, the firmament was as yet dark and threatening. The morn- 
ing star had just risen, and was sparkling bright and clear through the 
branches of a magnificent tree, that shot out from the highest part of ^hc 
hill ; it seemed to have attracted the captain's- attention as well as mi«e. 

" Were I romantic now^ Mr. Cringle, I Could' expatiate on that view. 
How cold, and clear, and chaste, every thing looks ! The elements have 
subsided into a perfect calm, every thing is quiet and still, but there is no 
warmth, no comfort in the scene.'* 

" What a soaking rain l*» said Aaron Bang ; ** why, the drops are as 
small as pin point£|, and so thick* ! — a Scotch mist is a joke to them. Un- 
usual-all this, Captain. You know our tain in Janaaica usually descends in 
bucketfuls, unless it be regularly set in for a week, and then j bht'then only, 
it becoihes what in England we are in th^ habit of callin'g a soaking rain. 
One good thing, however, — while it descended so quietly, the eaiQi will 
absorb it all, and that furious river will not continue swollen." 

" Probably not," said I. , ' 

*♦ Mr. Cringle," aaid the skipper, '" do you mark that tree on the ridge 
of the mountain, that large tree in such conspicuous relief against the east- 
em sky?'* 

"I do. Captain. But — Heaven help uft'.-^what necromancy is this! 
It seems to sink into the mountain- top — why, I only^see the uppermost 
branches now. It has disappeared, and yet the outline of the hill is as dis- 
tinct and well defined as ever ; I can even see the cattle on ^e ridge, 
although they are running about in a very incomprehensible way cer- 
tainly." 

" Hush !" said Don Ricardo, " hush ! — the padre is rieading the funeral 
service in the chapel, preparatorj* to the body being brought out." 

And so he was. But a low grumbling noise, gradually increasing, was 



1 



JTOM CRUrOLs's LOCK 331 

I 

now distinctly aadible. The monk hurried op^with the prcKribed form — 
he finished it -— and we. were about moving the body to cany it forth — 
Bang and I being in the very act of stooping down to lift the bier, when thd 
captain- sun^ out sharp and quick, — ^' Here Toml" — the urgency of the 
appeal abolishing the Mister — " Here ! — zounda, the whole hill-side is 
in motion I" And as he spoke I beheld the negro village, that hung on 
the opposite bank, gradually fetch away, houses, trees, and all, with aloud, 
harsh, grating sound. • 

"God defend us!" I involuntarily exclaimed. 

" Stand clear," shouted the skipper ; *' the whole hill^side opposite is 
under weigh, and we shall be bothered here presently.'* 
^ He was right — the entire face of the hill over against us was by this 
time in motion, sliding over the substratum of rock like a first-rate gliding 
along the 'well-greased ways at launching — an earlAy avalanche. Pres- 
ently the rough, rattling, and crashing sound, froiri the disrupture ojf the 
soil, and the breaking of the brancl)es, and tearing up by the roots of the 
largest trees, gave warning of some tremendous incident The lights in 
the huts still burned, but houses and all continued to slide down the decliv- 
ity ; and acnon a loud startled exclamation was heard here and there, and 
then a pause, but the low mysterious hurtling sound never ceased. 

At length a loud continuous yell echoed along the hill-side. The noise in- 
creased — ^the rushing sound c^me stronger and stronger — the river rose high- 
ei^and roared louder; i^ overleaped the lintel of the door — the fire on the 
floor hissed for & moment, and then expired in smouldering wreaths of white 
smoke — the discolpured torrent gurgled into the chapel, and reached the 
altar-piece ; and while the cries from the hill-side were highest, and bit- 
terest; and most despairing, it suddenly^lled the chapel to the top of the 
low door-post ; and although the IflR-ge tapers which had been lit near the 
altar-piece were as yet unextinguished, like meteors sparkling on a troubled 
Bea, all was misery and coyistem9.tion. 

** Have patience, and be composed, now," shouted Don Ricardo. " If 
it increases, we can Escape through the apertures 'here, behind the altar- 

f)iece, and from thence to lh# high ground beyond. The heavy rain has 
oosened the soil on the opposite bankj and it has slid into the river-course, 
negro houses and alU Bat be composed, my dears — nothing supernatural 
in all this ; and rest assured, although the river has unquestionably been 
forced from its channel, that there is no danger, if you will only maintain 
your self* possession. 

And there we were -^ an inhabitant of a cold climate cannot §o along 
with me in the description. We were all alarmed, but we were not chiUed 
—cold is a great daunter of bravery. At New Orleans, the black regi- 
ments, in the heat of the forenoon, were really the most efiicient corps of 
t^e army ; but in the morning, when the hoar-frost was on the long wire- 
grass, they were but as a broken'reed. " "H^n too 'cold tor brave to-day,*' 
said the sergeant of the grenadier company of the West India regiment 
which was brigaded in the ill-omened advance, when we attacked New 
Orleans ; but here, having heat, and seeing* none of the^women egregi- 
ously alarmed, we all took heart of grace, and really there was no quailing 
among us. 

Senora Campana and her two nieces, Sanora Cangrejd and her angelic 
daughter, had all betaken themse^s to a sort of seat, enclosing the altar 
in a semicircle, with the pease-soup coloured water up to their kne^s. Not 
a word — not an exclamation of fear escaped from them, although the gush- 
ing eddies from the open door showed that the ^il from the opposite hill 
Was fast settling down, and usurping the former channel of the river. 

** All very fine this to read of," at last exclaimed Aaron Bang. *^ Zounds, 



3^ TOM CEIir^IiS's I.0«. 

we shall be drowned. ^ItOi^L cot, TFaneom ; Tom Cringle, look ootj'lbr 
my part, I shall dive through the door, an^ take my chance.*' 

^ No use in that,'' said £on Ricardo ; *< the two round oi>enings there at 
the west end of the chapel, open on a dry shelf, from which tne ground 
alopes easily upward to the house ; let us put the ladies through them, and 
then, we males can shift for ourselves as we best may." 

At this moment the water rose so high, that the bier on which the eorpee 
of poor Maria Olivera lay stark and stiff, was floated off the treseels, and 
turning on its edge, after glancing for a moment in the light cast by the 
wax tapers, it sank into the thick brown water, and was no more seen. 

The old priest murmured a prayer, but the effect on us was electric. 
'* Sauve qui peuf " was now the cry ; and Sneezer, quite in his element, 
began to cruise all about, threatening the tapers with instant extinction. 

*< Ladies-, get through the holes,'| shouted Don Ricardo. ** Captain, get 
you out-finrt" 

"Can't desert my ship," said the gallant fellow ; <Hbe last to quit where 
danger is, my dear sir. It is my cnarter ; but, Mr. Cringle, go you, axid 
luAid the ladies out" 

"I'll be damned if I do," said I. "Beg pardon, sir; I simply mean to 
say, that I cannot usurp the pas fVom you." 

"Then," (^[uoth Don Ricardo — a more discreet personage than any one 
of us — " 1 will go myself;" and forthwith he^screwed himself through one 
of the round boles in the wall behind the altar-piece. "Give me out one 
of the wal tapers — there is no wind now," said Don Ricardo ; "and hand 
out my wife, Captain Transom." 

" ^ve Maria /" said the matron, " I shall never get throu^ that hole.** 

"Try, my dear madam," said^ang, for by this time we were all deu- 
cedly alarmed at our situation. " ' T^, madam ;" and we lifted her to- 
wards the hole— fairly entered her into it head foremost, and all was 
smooth, till a certain part of the excellent woman's earthly tabernacle stuck 
fast 

We could hear her invoking a4l the saints in the c&lendar on the outside 
to "make her tAtn;" but the flesh, and mn^le were obdurate — through 
she would not go, until — delicacy being now blown to the winds — Cap- 
tain Transom placed his shoulder to the old lady's extremity, and with a 
regular " Oh, heave oh !" shot her through the aperture into her husband's 
arms. The youn^ ladies were ejected much more easily, although Francesca 
Cangrejo did stick a little too. The priest was next passed, then Don 
Picador ; and so we went on, until in roCadon we had all made our exit, 
and were perched shivering on the high bank. God defend us ! we had 
not been a minute there when the rushing of the stream increased — the 
rain once more fell in torrents — several lar^e trees came down with a fear- 
ful impetus in the roaring torrent, and strucS: jthe comer of the chapel. '»It 
shook — we could see the si^all cross on 'the eastern gable tremble. An- 
other Mump surged against it — it gave way — ^ and in a minute afterwards 
there was not a vestige riemaining of the wnole fabric. 

" What a funeral lor thee,*Maria !" said Don Ricardo. 

JV*o( a vestige of the body was ever found. 

There was nothing now for it We all stopped, and turned, and looked 
— there was not a stone of the building to be seen — all was red precipi- 
tous bank, or dark flowing river— so we tamed our steps towards the house. 
The sun by this time had" risen. We found the northern range of roon^s 
still entire, so we made the most of it ; and, by dint of the captain's and 
my nautical skill, before dinner-time, there was rigged a canvass iury roof 
over the southern part c£ the fabric, and we were once more seated in com- 
parative comfort at our meal. But it was all melancholy work enouch. 
However, at last we retired to our beds ; and next morning, when I awoke, 



v»]t OEiiroLcfs jUMii. 338 

ibfire was tiie small streiun once more tiiektiiig over the faee of the rock, 
VFith the slight spray wafting into my bedroom, a little discolouied certaiiw 
ly, but a» quietly as if no storm had taken place. 

'We were. kept at Don Picador's for three days, as, from the shooting jsf 
tb» soil fcom>the opposite hill, the river had been damved up, and its chan* 
nei altered, so that there was no veotuiing across. Three negroes were 
unfortunately drowned, when the bank shot, as .Bang called it^ But thft 
wonder passed away ; and by nine a*clock on the fourth mdming, whea 
we moanted our mules to proceed, there was little apparently on the fair 
&ce of nature to mark that such fearful- scenes had been. HoWever,wheii 
we did get under weigh, we found that the huiricane had not passed over 
US without Leavinff^fearfiy evidences of its vidence.. 
, We had bieakmsted — the women had wept ^* Don Rieardo haa blown 
iMvnese— Aaron Bai^g had blundered and iid^eted about— and the beaiiaa 
wefs ai thedbor. We-embraced the laifies. 

** My son," said Senora Cangrejo, " we shall most likely never meet again. 
Yon have your country to go to — you have a mother. Oh, may she never 
■iiflfer the pangs which havp wmns my heart ! But I know — I know that 
ilie never wiu." I bowed. " Wq mav never —^indeed, in all likelihood 
we shall never meet again !" continued she, in a rich, deep-toned^ mellow 
voice; " but if your way .of life should ever lead you to Cordova^ you will 
be sure of having many' Visiters, and many a door will open to you, if you 
will but give out Qiat you have showh kindness to Maria OUvera, or to any 
one connected* with her.** She wept --^ and bent over me, pressing boOi 
bar hands on the aown of m3[ bead. *< May that great Goo, who carsib 
BOtfor rank or station^ fbr nation or ^ country, blMs yoo, my son •— UeM 
yon!" 

, All this was sorfy woflu She kissed me on* the forehead, and turned 
away. Her dau^ter was standing dose to her, «Uke Niobe, all tears*** 
** Farewell, Mr. Cringle — may you be happy I" I kissed her hand — she 
tbmed to the captain, ^e looked inej^pressible things, and taking her 
liind, held it to his bieast ; and the% makings ahght genuflection, pressed 
it to his lips. He appeared to be amazingly energetic, Mid she seemed U> 
iArvtggle to be r^eased. He recovered himself, however — ^otAe a solemn 
bbw — the ladies vanished: We shook hands with did Don Picador, 
mounted our mules,* and bid a last adieu to the VaUey efth$ Htarrieane* 

We ambled along for seme time in lAenee. At length the skipper drop* 
ped astern, until he get alongside of me. ** I say, Tom'* — I was well 
aware that he nev^r cane4 me Tom unless he was/ou, or his heart was full, 
honest man — " Tom,- what think, you of FranoeecaCCansrejo V* 

i)h ho; sits the wind iif that quartei^ bought I. ** Why, I don't know, 
captain — I have seen her to disadvantage — ^o much misery — fine woman 

though — rather large l&my taste ~ but " - 

<< Confound y6ur ftufo,*' quoth the captain. < <<J3«t, never mind-— push 
Oft,- posh on.** ^ I m)iy tell the gende t^er in his ear, that the worthy fel- 
low/ at the moment when 1 send this chapter to the press, has his flag, and 
tlu^ Francesea Ci;ingrejo-is no less a pefsonage than his wife. 

However, let ua get along. ^ Pocter Pavo Real,** said Bon Rlcaido^ 
**nw^ since you have been good enough to sparCsUa a day, let us get tiie 
heart of your secret out of yeu. Why, you muat have, been pretty well 
frightened on the island there." 

** Never so miieh ficigfatened m my.life, Don Rieardo ;. that English cap* 
tain is a most tempestuous man — but all has ended well ; and after having 
seen you tu the crossing, £ will bid you good-by." „ ^ 

({ Poo — nonsense. Come along — here is the Enmsh memeo, your bro- 
ther Eeculapiue; so, come along, you can return in the morning.** 
« But the sick folk m Santiagp — w." 
46—2 



. <<Willb6iMMthein^erlbryoiv«bamib^I>wtorPt?oEed 
DonRicudo. 

The little doctor Uvqriied, uid «way we all eantsred — Don Rieaido lead- 
iHjf, foUoved by lui wie and nieces, no. three stout miilesi Atting^ not on 
sile-Mddks, but oa » kind of chair, with a foot4K)ard on the laiiMMid mie 
to sapAoit the feet -^ then followed the two Gdena, and little Reefpoint, 
while me captain aftd I brought up the rear. We had not proceeded five 
hundred ▼araa, when we were brought to a slasid-stiU by a mighty teee^ 
which had been thiown down by the wind fairly ajcroae the load. On the 
^ aght hand there wda a perpendicular rock rising up tor a height of fire faun- 
died feet; and i^n tbe left an equally psecipitous descent, without .<4ther 
ledge or parapet to prevent dne from jailing, ovejr. What w«bIo be donef 
We cooM not by any eiertiop of strength remove the tree ; and if we sent 
hack for i^uiatance^ il would have been a woik of time. "So wcdismooBted, 
got the ladies to ahght, and Aaron Bang, Tmnsom, 9nd m^telf, like trot 
Eaiglits>eirant, undertook to rida the tmJoe over the stump. 

Aaron Bang led gallantly, and made a deuced ^ood jump of it — ^ Tna* 
iom followed, and made nnt quite so elever an .exhibition -^ I then ratiM 
$i it, and down came mule and rider, ilowever, we ware aoeounted for- ob 
the rightv aide. 

« But what ahaU become of us ?" shouted the Enelish doctor. 

^ And as for tke, I shall return,'' said the Spanish uMdko. • 

" Lord knre you, no," said little Red^point ; ^ here, lasn me to ifxf beast, 
and no fear.*' The doctor made him fast, as desired, round the mule's ne^ 
with a stout thong, and then drbve him at the Jsarriende, and over thev 
Uame, man and beast, althouebt to tell the truth, Utile Reefy ahgfated ww 
out on the neck, with a hano grasping each ear. .However, he was a gaU. 
tet little fellow, and in no wise diaooumged, so HejundiBrtook.to bring crter 
tke other quadrupeds ; and in little more thab a ouarter of an bouf we. wera 
aU under weigh on ths opposite> side^ in full* sail towards Don Ricaide^s 
piupeity. B& as wa proceeded up the ralley, 4ie destraction caused b^ 
Ifee storm became mom and pnore appaie^t. r Trees were, strewn alfovt m 
all directions, havn^ been torn up. by th^ roots -^ road there wan lilenilly- 
none ; and by the time we reached tne cofiee estate, after a ride, or scruiiK 
ble^ more property speaking, df three hours, we werb all pretty much tired. 
In some, places tlie road- at the b^twas but a rocky shelf of limestione not 
eKueeding twelve im^ies in width:, Vherfi, if yon had slip|>ed, down .you 
^ould have gone a thousand feeL At this time it was white and clean, an 
if it had been iiewty chiselled, all the soil and sand having, been washed 
away by the recent heavy rainau ^ . 

Tne situation was beautifnl ; the House stood on a platftrm scmped out 
of the hillside, wi& a beautiful view of the whole country jlown to St. 
Jago. The accommodation vi^as good ; more comforts, more Englirii com- 
fflits, in the mansion than I had ^t seen' in Cuba : and as it was buOt of 
solid slabs of .limestone, and roofed with* strong oard^wood tiiubers and 
rafters, and tiled, it had sustained comparatively little injury, m it ^ad th^ 
advantitffe of beins at the sUme time shelteiw by the oyerhan^C clifis. 
It Mood m tiid midal^ of a lar^ pMbrm of hard sun-dried day, .pMteied 
oyer, and as white as ehalk, wmch extended about forty feet from the eaveS' 
of the house, in everv direction, on which the coliee was eured. This 
platform was surrounded on all sides by the greenest mass I had ever seen, 
and overshadowed,, not the house alone, but the ithofe level spaoe, by one 
v»st wild fi|vtree. 

" I say, Tom, do you see that Scotchman hu^ng the Creole, eh ?^ 

« Scotchman 1" said I, looking towards Don Kicardo, who certainly did 
not appear to be particukirly amorous; on the contrary, we i»ad juft 
alighted, and the worthy 'man was enaeting groem) 



TOM cbinaub's Loa» Stt 

" Tety" contmiied Bang, *< the ScototuBwi bugging the Creole ; loe)ial 
that tree — do ^ou see the trunk of it ?" 

1 did look at it It was a maleficent cedar, with a tall Btnu^t stem, 
cove^ over with a curious sort of fretwork, wove by the braoohes of aoin^ 
flftrong parasitical plant, which had warped itself round aad round it, by 
numberless snakelike convolutions, as if it had been a vegdabfe Laocoob* 
The tree itself shot up branches to the uncommon heigBt of fifty fee£* the 
average eiith of the trunk beinjg four*and-twenty feet, or eight feetin mam- 
eter. The leaf of the. cedar is small, not Unlike the ai%; but when 1 
look;ed up^I noticed tJm^tiie feelera of this ligneous aerpent had twisted 
lonnd the largest boughs, and blended their broad leaves with those ef th6 
Ino, ao thatdt locked hke tw« trees grafM into- one: biU, as Aaron 
Bang said, in a very few ^eara the oedar would entb<dy disappear, its 
gnmih hmk& impeded, its pith extracted, and its core rotted, by the baleful 
embraces of the wild fig, of "this Scotchman hugging the CrtdeJ* After 
we had fairly shaken into our ppaees, tliere was ereiy promise of a very 
pleasant visit Our host had a toleraUe'CeUar, and althovtth there was aol 
mnd^ of stvle in his establishment, still there was a faur aS^waace of com- 
loft, evenrthing considered. The eveniiie a^r we arrived was most beau* 
tiful. The house, situated on its white plateau of hmhk»t$^ as the coffiis 
nUtfeipBS are called, where large pQes of the4»ecries in their red olierryUke 
i»psl»# had been bladtening in &e sun the whole fi^ienooB, and on which a 
gang of negroes was now emploj^ed covering them i^ with, taspawlins for 
m jught, AnoA in the eentre of an amphitheatre of mountains^ the ifoat 
box, asit were, the stage part opening on a bird's-eye view of the distant 
town and harbour, with the everlasting ocean beyond it» the cuirents und 
flaws of wind malung its surface look like ice, as we were too distant to 
diseen the heaving of the swell, or the motion of the billows. The fivt 
"^BkUing shades of evemng were deepened by the seoibrous shadow of tha 
immeoae tree overhead, and all down in the deep valley was now becoming 
dark and undi^tinfuishable, through the blue vapoort that were eiadualty 
floating up |^>wanfs us. To the' kft, on the shoulder of the Hotseahde 
HiU, the sunbeams still lingered, and the gigantic shadows of thetrees on 
the right hand prong were strongly cast across the valley on a red precipe 
tdns bank near the top of it The sun was descending beyond the wood, 
iBashing tiuou^ the branches, as if thev had been on fire. He disappeared. 
It was a most lovely still evening — the air — bat hear the skipper-^ 

^ ^ It is the hour when finm the boughs 

The nightingale's high note is beaid ; 
It is the hour when lovers' vows 
• Seem sweet in every whisper'd woid ; 
And gentle winds and waters SiMr, 
' Make music to the lonely eur. 
, Each flowu' the dews have figljitiy wet, 

Aad in the sky t^e stars are aiiel, ^ 

And wi the wave is (iedper bkie, 

And on the leaf is browner h«M, 

And in the heaven that dear obscure^ 

So softly dark and darkly pure,. 

Which Mows the decline of day, 

When tyrilight melts beneath the moon away." ., 

*< Well recited, skipper,** shouted Bang. *' Given as the noble poet's 
▼erses should be given. I did not know the extent of your aceomplii^ 
ments ; grown poetical ever since you saw Francesca Cangrejo, eh V\ 
The darkness hid the gaMant captain's blushes, if bladl he did. ^ 
''J say, Don Ricardo, who are those 1^ — half-a-dozen weU-dad negroes 



t96 TdM cmmoLB's log. 

kid appiMched the Immmo bytiiis time— <' Ask tbem, Mr. Bang; take 

your mend Mr. Cringle for an interpreter." 

•* Well, I will Tom, who are they T Aak them — doJ* 

Ipbt the qaaBtkm, « Do you belong to the property ?" 

The foremost, « handsome negro, answered me, «* No, we don't, ar j aft 

least, itot till to-morrow 7" 
* Not tiU to-moiTow.'* ' 

'' No, sir ; smnos cahaUeros Aoy," (we fcre genUemen to-day.) 
** Gentlemen to-day ; and, pray, wHat shall yon bb to-morrow ?" 
**E8elm>ot titra tts^^ (slafes again, sir,) rejoined the poor fellow, nowise 

daunted. 



*< And yoo, my dariing," iaid I |o a nice well-dressed fiirl, who seemed 
to be the sister of the epokesman, " what are you to-day,^raaT 1 ask ?" 

She laoghed — *< Esdmtk, a 8ta:ve lo-day, but to-monow i shall be free.* 

"Very strange." . *. , 

** Not at all, senor ; there are qx of oa in a family, mnd ohe of us is fines 
each day, all to father there," pointing to an old ^yheaded. negro, who 
stood by, leaning on his staff-^ « he is free twa days m the we^ ; and -as 
I am gmng to have a cMd," —a. cool admission, — « I want to bay another 
day for myself too —> but Don Rioardo will tell yon all about it** 

The Den by this time tShiined in, taOung kSnidly to tho poor creatines'; 
but we had to retire, as dinner was now announced, to whidi #e sat dewn. 
' Don Ricardo had been altogether Spaaish in'Santii^o^ beeansa (e lived 
there among Spaniards, and eyeiytfaing was SpamslMibout likn ; sawilii 
the tect of his countrymen he had ^dually been merged into the society p 
which he moved, and having manned a very high caste Spanish lady^ lie at 
'length became regularly amalgamated with the community. -But 'here, in 
bis mountain retreat, sole master, bis skvea in attendance -on him, b^ was 
once more an Englishman, in externals, as he always was at heart, and 
Richie Cloche; from the Land^ Toon of Rjrkaldy, shone for|h in all his 
clory^as the kind-hearted landlord. His head household servant was an 
En^ish, or rather a ianiaica negro ; his eaulpment, 'sO far Bf the dinner 
Hi mrt was concerned, was pore English ; be we^dd not even sp^L any- 
thing but English himself. * 

The entertainment was exceedingly fii>od, — the only thing that pu^ed 
as uninitiated subjects, was a fineasee oT Maoaca wormsy that is, the worm 
whi^ breeds in the rotten trunk of the cotton-tree, a beautiful little insect, 
as big as a miller's thumb, with a wihite trunk and a black head — in one 
word, a giganticcaterpillar. 

Bang ted thereon — ne had been accustomed to it in Jamaica in some 
Creole families where bo visited, he said — but'it was b^yvnd my compass. 
However, all this while we were havings great deal of £un, when Senora 
Campana addressed her husband — ^^my dear, you are now in your Eng- 
lish mood, so I suppose we must so.*' We bad dined at six, and it ipi^t 
now be about ei^t Don Ricaido, with all the complacency in the wond, 
bowed, ds much as to say, you are righ^ my dear, y(«i may go ; when his 
youngest niece addressed 'him. 

" Tfo — my uncle," spid she, in a low, silver-toned voice^ Juana and' I 
have brought qur guitafl »» 

*' Not another word to be said." qootli Transom -^ *< the guitars by all 
means." . ^ j 

The ^Is in aa instant without any preparatory blushing, or' other 
•tSr'**'^* rose, slipped their heads and right arms through the black 
nbbons that supported their instruments, and stepped into the middle of the 
room. "^ 

nodded^* ^^"''^ ^^ ^^ Oranada,' '» 8ai#ft.Senora Campana. They 



*(m €Mir0ui^« SMT. 1UO 



** Ym ihall take Fem&nioike milm*$ poftfi mid Seflwvi'Cuidalaiia, tlie 
Toongest sister to JmiMi '* for your vmee is deeper than miiie, and I shaU 

*^ Aglreed,'* said J«nna. wit^ a lotety smile, and an ai^ twinkle of her 
eye towards, me, and then launched forth in foil tide, ao6ompanying her 
sweet and mellow voice on that too muclVne^eeted inBtnidlent^ the guitar. 
It was a wild, ivregvlar sort <X ditty, wim one or'fwo startling arSbisfm 
btmts in it As near as may be, the following eonireys the meanings' jut 
jftot the poetiy. *• * ' ' . • 

VSS M6ORI8H y^A^ or CMUMiPDiL 



% *<Xhe8sttiBg.«o«iibaq0ioT9r thej^illy. • 

.. Oh tbe,dari( pura breast of dN» mountain lake ' 
Stj^l^^mbl^s her creenish silver wake^ 
'Aikh the blae ftaaif floats ov^ the riU, 
Andti;ii cold staeaks of ciawaing#|PpMr» ■ 
<^iyib| token t5at giMuase ia-^ear ; 
And ^^ fast.cleartng eaat is fliishin^ 
And tho Jiratei;^ cloud's p'o t^ushing^ 
And (beday-atarli sparkling on high, ^ 
^* Like the fire of ihy Anna'$ dark eyew 
, .TfieF ruby-red Viouds in the east. - 
Float like- islands upon the s^/ 
Whan (he wiods are asleqxm its breast; ^ 
Ahi would that such calm w,ere for^me \ • 

* And soe, the first streamer4i|De ray 
F/om the ninrisfui |e4 of day. 
Is. piercing the ruby-red eloodi, 
Shooting op lik« gol4ea*shrou4p ; . 
And Ukb saH^mK gauze falls the phower^ 
Leaving diamonds on bank, bush, and bower 
^. ^n^iimdMy unopened ^Y/er,'^ ^ 

Why wAw t&e darfc maid of Griutada?*' 

** At evening, when )aboiir«is dovet^ 
And oooi'd in the sea is thenar; 
- ' And the dew spaifdes elie'ar 0R the rose, 
And the flowers are begtming to close, 

-'^ich at nightfaH AgahiHn the cafin 
Their incense to God btofthe' iii balm ; > 
' And the bat flickers u^in the sky, ' 
Aiid the beeile hums moaaiqgly ^ ; 
And to rest in the brake speedf the^ deeTi' 
While the nlgflltingale sings load andf elstr. 

'it 
«Sedrehed by the heat df the sunVfiAoa ^ 
The sweetest fl sw ers are bending mest' 

"Opsk ^heir stander ttena ; 
Mere Mm are fliey thanif tettpes^tdeti 
Till «keydrhdc.of the ipaMfog gattw 
ThKt ftdl fi»Bi<|^ eye of nighb. 



I • 



1 



MB MM «JMK»a't>60« 



'H^i irottiJatt^fiMMM«retiiiUMig^ 
And U^jDnfkin'heftTea tiie* ilftn v twinUiagi 
Ko t^l-tale moon looks orer the mountain, . - 
To peer a^ ker pfele GaM.fiu9e in Ae ffniMUMll 

Ajad'Mrenadar's tteUowvoie^ * ' 
Wailing of war, or YyUiog of Iot» — 

Of love, while ihe melting* nuHd of hitdi^ito 
Leant out fiott her boWeriybovak . 

<• All is soft and yielding towarda night, * ' 

Wheii hiMdiag darlpiesi abroads «A'««n HMJOght^- 
But chaste, chaste,' is this q>1d, pure light, 
Sang t^e Moorish l^kU «f OraHadft'.** 

After ^the son&'we nUappIfttidMI, and CM Imdles hAyjn^ ma^ their 
.eongis, retired. The* captain divl I looked towards Auon Bang ind Don 
Ricardo; they were tooth and nail at something wfaini we oouUnot mi- . 
derstand. So we wisely "helcPotirtongyetf. ' **' 

« Very atrange all this," iqtfbtii Bang. ' * #r 

"Not at dl," said Ricardo. ." As I tell you, every slave here csn have 
himself or herself appraised, at anytime thJfy may oiodse^ with liberty to. 
purchase^ their freedom day by day.'* *' * * 
** But that* would be comBmsory mantrmiss^on,'' mioth 3ttag* 
" And if it be,'' said Ricardo, ^< what then t The schtm* wcxks wefi 
i^e. why should it not do sd'thefe — I mea^ with ^ou, who <hate so many 
advantages over us 7" 

Thi9 is an. tmentertaining subject to ihost |)eople, blit having no bias my- 
self, I have considered it but justice to insert in my log tlhe felTowing letter, 
^faiph Bang, honest fellow, addressed %e> me, some years after tb» time I 
S|*akof. • '• "'.♦". 

* My dkar Cringle, " - . " 

" Since I last saw you in London, it is nearly, bttt not quite, three y«ars 
ago. I considered, at the time we{)arti^d,.thal; irl lived at the ^teof 9000(. 
a year, | was not Spending one half of mv average income, and on the faith of 
this I did plead guilty to my house in r&rl( Lane,-fi^,d a Carriage for my 
wife, — and, in snort, I spent ftiy 3OO0Z. a year. Where am I xMtar ? hi 
the old shop at Mammee Gully -r-nly two eldest daughters, little rahigs, in 
the very middle of their education, h&kily ordered out; shipped as it were, 
like two bales of goods, to Jasaaicav-- my eldest, iM|)heW, whom- X Ind 

' adopted, obliged to exchange from the -— ^Li^ht I>nie|oeii9, aiild to enter a 
foot regiment,, receiving- the difiereaeef-Vhich bt^ clearfil him from his mess 
accounts. But the world says I wa#«ettiavagant. LULe- -Timon, however 
— No damn Timon. I speiit my 'money when I tnonghtJ bad it, Kpifi 
therein I did no more than th^ 0Bl|e'of.Bedfonl, or Loi^ Qrosvenor, er 
many other worthy peer ; and now wksn I no k>nger Iwve it, why, I cut 
ray coat by«ny cloth, bave m<de up-my mi«d to pei^toal btniihment here, 
and I owe no' man a farthijig. 

'* But all this is wandtringfrom the sabject ^e am now asked in direet 
terms to free our slaves. Iwill not even gknce at the injustiee of this^cleh 
raand, the horrible ^fraotidh of richts that ^ would lewd to ; all this { will 
leave untouched ; but, my dear fellow, weie men in your service or the 

• ^'py to do us justice, each in his sma^l spheM^Jki island, how much good 
might you not do^us ? Offiottv of rank are, of all o&rs, the most influen- 
tial witnesses wh could adduce^ if they, like yftn, have had opportunities of 
judgbg for themselves. Bat I am ramUinsfroBEk mjT objett You may 
semember our escapade into Gubi, a thouaancP^ears ago^ when yov w«pA a 



WM rCmmou's mo. tt9 



4i6«l«fiaat of 4ie Fkebnmdl. . W:4a,>oH Mfcy «!>• iwa b u i lmi Don Rieanlo's 

dextrine regarding the gradual etnanoipAtioB of the. negroes, and howwe 
mvw.hia plan ia ml 4spamAtn —at leaat 1 dfd, for ydn knew Httlie of th6se 
matters. Well, last year I BMMle a tiols of vhat'&en passed, «nd seit it 
tb an eminent \y'est India msrofaant in Iiotidon, who had it pifblished in tKe 
Couriar, but it did not seem to please either one party or the othef p a signal 
proo^ one would have fought, thai there was some good in it ^ At a mn 
period, I x€|(qaaBte4 the aaisa fiendeman to hare it^pobiished in Bladaoooi^ 
where it would at loast have had a fair trial on its own merits, but it was 
•Vifiised insertion. My v«ry worthy fnena, *^* wlk> acted for old Kit at 
' tbat-tine as seorsU^y.^of-state ftsr oolopial aflUn, diteot like it, i presnaae'; 
it trenched a liftte^ it ^fovld seem, on the tntsgn^ of his great onestion ; it 
«ppio«ched to eoqisthinglikie hompubonf manum^ian^ aSent woich heii^ 
rave. Why will he not ^hinfe* on this subject like^ Ghiistiai^ . man ? The 
Ci^MViy -^ t say 'SO — iMittvtr sanction the retaining in Iwniage of any sknty 
who ii iBilUng towty his master his fair apprajise^ value: ' ' 

1' Our fiieni "*> * ifljusss-m, and hilhself too, ateaile hyhis ultra notions. 
However, hear what I propo^ and what; as I have told ^nformeirly, was 
jKd>liahediatdie:0Mit^by nolessatniliteRCiord*-^^ ^ : 

M « ^he following scheme of rederaptioft for ikSa ^vee' in our coioniAi^ 
.^tida toa'pMotios tmX propsils in semeiof tl^e 8panisb ssMienients. . 

^ < WeWvte ttow bisMbsi,'^a viost^zcelleilt measnie,) and we may pii»- 
•-aoa^e that the- inferior cl^%y ^1 be mock more efficient than heretofere. 
it ia-therefofo proposed, •— That every 'ShtTO, on>attiining. the age of twen- 
ty'one years, should be, by act of parliament, competent to appdy to hfs 
^^viah 4Meq;ywui| and s l gaif yhia d^re to be appraised. The clergy- 
man's business. would then be to. select two respectable appiaisOfs fyom' 
among his parirfiioners, who 8lMNiid*val«e the slavei offing in an umpire if 
tbmr maagreed^ . / ^ . > 

" < As men e?^ of good prinqples Will often be more or less sway^ by 
)be p^uliar interests of (he body to which .they hdlohg, the rgptor should be 
iBstniCted, if he saw aa^ fla^i^adit swerving fromim* honest appmisemcnt, 
td notify the same- to his bishop, who, by applicfitioa to the governor, if 
Bind wefBi oonld ^iAf fOCitiff it When tn»-slave was thiis i^lned, the 
vliluation should be registeted^by the itk^tof, m a book to be kept fof that 
iMpoaa; av-otfefSedtaJopy ^'wfellcb shouU be annually loAgtd among the 
archives of the eokmy. . .' •' . 

« « Wr shall MSiime a caM^ where a.sla]vtB is vdlved at tIO£. Jamaica cttr- 
VBfur^ He aooii, by working fr^hows, eelKng theipro^lMce.of his provision 
yeandB,Jto^ ae^uives HOii ; and how ^easily af^Tfreqnently this is done, 
0fvy onO* knows, who is. at all acquainted with Wrotlndia^affiurs. 

',<< < He'th^ shiu hwe a right to p«y his owner this 201. as jQie price of his 
Mtmimf jir coer, and his owner shall be boundto iecei;»e it. M similar sum 
. woibi^ pnrohai^ hisii his freedom on Tuesday ; and otl^erfottr^fistalments, 
to tise a West In^ phrase, wonld 6tiy him /tve^altogeiher. Yon will no- 
tiee,.l oonsider that he is already ftee on Ihe Bnndkiy/ NoW, where is the 
iOsaimoMitahle difficultjr -here ? The planter mky pe put toinconvenience, 
Ci^tainly, flreat inconveniMice, but ke has tempen^ien^wid the isllave hois his 
Jriedan — \f ke ds$tnem4t ; and as his .emajicipation in nine cases out of 
ten would be a work of time, be would, as he approached ahsolntrfreedon^ 
become more civilised^ that is, pore fit to be free ; an\i as he became more 
civilized, new wants would spHng up, so that when he wis finally free, he 
would not be content to woUl a day or two in the week for subsistence 
-merely. He would work the whole six to buy n^any litUe'^comforts, whicb^ 
4af a flsse ntddeniy emancipated, he never waM have thmight qf. 



iUO 99M 4mmmM*9 



•r 



provi0ioQcand€k»tbiq|^deei«aMu|TaAMlIy.' - ^ 

^ ^It mfty be ofajeeted *-^<< Steppose ilaves p«tij free, to bi0 taken in exe- 
culioii, and wld lor 4«ht«'^ i aasv^/ let dMSi N tM>. ". WIk eanirat three 
dhtys of ft mib'a labeur be sold by tbe depvty-marebel m yreii ae six ? 

'<< Agam'— "Supp^ the oMig is iiiorteae6d,or liebie to 7i«%m«if* 
a||Unat tne owner ef it" . I a|p anewer, let it be io— only, in this case let 
ike alave pav hi0 ioBtakiianta into cottEt» hi plaea of paying them tq hie owb- 
«n, atfd let him apply to hirfeofw for infomiati^n'tn aocn a eaee. 

^ '^By the register ^wouM Hbanre kept, «f<0ry sue dbuld atohce se^ what 
pvapeity an owner IM in %ii gang-^that is, fapiir taany w«lle actnaliy 
«layea, and bo# many were in pmgress 0f ^ becomiii^ ftee. Thn» fteiU4hr 
jMied dnd dndHjArlou* Ibea iwyM jeoin kemmu fnemm^ But the IcBc and 
wmihUti iMi|M fiitt emkiM$ «fanwf, snd wkg the devil •AeMidi»t f i^w ? 

" . ^ <S%ned) ••«A*B-r— %»»' 

There does s^em to \ft aron|;h> /et Yigefrons ffoniKl sense m all this. Bot 
I take feave of tife sobjeot, which I do notpvofess to undeistand, oidy I im 
willing toiear witness4n fkroi^ of n^ old'^fUends; sol^as I ean eenseien- ' 
tioQsly^ ■ ^ ^ 

We retniped next day to Sariliago, and had then to undergo tbe bitter- 
asps of partfsg. With mt it wns a slight ailair, bat the ritipper 1 — How* 
ever, I will not dwell «n it* We reached the town t o ot ids evemng. The 
women wese mady to weep, I saw: '4>«t we til tnrqed m, and next morning 
at bieakftsl we. were moTe^, I wm edmit -^ soAe more, some lese. UxSter 
Re^,. peer JeHow^ wm crying Bke a c;hild ; indeed fie was Bttle moM^ 
being barely fifteen. 

<<0h 1 Mr. Cringi9, 1 wish I ha#net« seen' Miss €mi d et U de kt Jh- 
ienM ; indeed I do.^ . 

This Was Don lbiaaWo*B youngest filsee. 

. «< Ah, Keefy. Reefy," said I, " yon'tnast make haste, and be fttai^ fm^ 
•ndfAen-i »• - - ' 

« What dM be caHherf^ said Aaron. 

f*8enortt TVm^fM CmditUiriade losDok^eh Gmtxdha^VM^e^^^YAxMieittA 
out 4ittle' Reefy. " *•..*'•• 

'* What a complicseled piec^ ef machinery she mtnt be !** gmveiy KJQUMidL 
Bto& * "' ' , , 

The meal was protracted to a very nnnsiiai leBethybnt time dnd tid# 
wut for no man. We'r^se. Aarop Bang advanced to make his bei%e 'te 
om* kind hfptes#;*he h^ oot his hw4» but ^the, to -Aiuq|i's great surprise 
apparently, pUBhe4^t on an& iid^^and regularly dostnc wiUx our' Ihetfdt, 
liagved him in right emcst. ' I hi^ve before mentioned -that she was n viAJr 
smul woman* so, M me devil would faav^ it, tiie golden pin irf her hA 
wB|i thrust into Aaron*s eye, which made faim jump badk, wlierein he Jost 
his bafame^Lnd away be «^ent, dragging Madama Campana down on die 
top of him,' • Qowe^iier, none of tts coulif laugh Inoto; we partedy jnro|>ed 
into t>ur boat, and'i^oeeeded straight to the anchorage, where three Btitiri^ 
merchantmen were by thia tihie tiding all leady for sea. We got cm hfSinri, 
"Mr. Yerk,*''8a$d the'capbiin, ^ fire a^n, and hoist blue Peter at- the fbio. 
Loose the foretop8sil.H ^Oie maeteire came on board for their instrnelions^ 
we passed bik a melandudy eveninr of it, dnd next morning I took nay Inst 
hwkofSnatiagQdeCnba. T ** 



90M CRHfOLfi's LOO. 391 



• .1- 



CHAPTER 2Cy. 

'THB C&VISB OK fHE WATK — tHlT ACTION WITH THE SLATKR. 

. - '<<^0*ert1iefflad'watersof(faedark1)Iae8ea, 

' Our tlioTighta as boapdless, and our 6OUil0 as-frte 
> Far 88 the breeze can bear the billow/e foam / 

' 8urv&v our empire, and behold our hc^e. ^ 
Theseare our italms, no limita to their sway — 
Our flag the sceptre all who meet obey.»» 

' TBB OORiBAIlU 

- I 

At three o^clock next morning, about an hour aAd a Ittlf before day- 
dawn, I was roused from my cot by. the' gruff vokeof -the boatswain on 
ftfe^ — ** All hands up anchor." . ' 

''The next moment the ffunroom steward entered with a lantern, whidii 
fae^^aced on the table— ''Gentlemen, all haiids ufTaBoiier) if you please.'* 

"Botheration !*» grumbled one. 

'•*Oh dear!*' yawned another. .. 

" How merrily we live that sailors be!»' sunganotherin a most doleful 
strain, and in all the bitterness of he$rt consequent on being roused out of 
a warm nest so- unceremoniously. But no help for it; so up we altgot, 
and opening the door of my berth, I got out, ana sat me down on the bench 
that ran along the starboaid side of me table. 

For the benefit of the uninitiated, let me describe a^ gun-room on board 
of a sloop of war. Everybody knows that the captain^s cabin occupies tha 
afler part of the ship ; next^ it, on the sam^ deck, is ttie gun-room. In a 
corvette, such as the FireBrand, it is a room, as near as may be, twenty 
Teet long by twelve wide, and lighted by a long scuttle^ Or' skylight, in the 
>leck above. On each side of this room runs a lew of small diambers, 
seven feet long by six wide, boarded off from the main ealoon, or, in nauti* 
cal phrase, separated from it by bulkheads, each 'with a 'door and small 
.Wiildow opening into the same, and, generally spei^Ling, with a small 
scuttle in the side of the ship towards the sea. Tfaese-are the officers' sleep- 
ing apartments, in whikh tbey have each a chest of drawers and basin* 
stand ; while, overhead is suspended a cot, or hammock, kept asunder by a 
woodem frame, six feet long by about two broad, slung from deats nailed 
to the- beams above, by two lanyards festened to rings, one at the head, 
and the other at the foot ; from which radiate a number of smaller cords, 
which are fastened to the canvass of the oot ; while a small strip of canvass 
runs^rom head to foot on each side, so as to- prevent the'sleeper from roll- 
ing out The dimensions of the gun-room are, as will be seen, very much 
drcuihscribed by the side berths ; and when you take into acbount, that the 
centre is occupied by a lon^ table, running the whole length of the room, 
. flanked by a wooden bencn, with a high back to it^ on each side, and a 
large dumsy chair^at the heat), and another a^ the foot, not forgetting tho 
eideboartl at the'head of the table, (full of knives, forks, spoons, tumblers, 
glasses, &c. &e. i&e., stuck into' mahogany Sockets j) all ofwbich are made 
last to the deck by strong cleats and staples, aChd bands of spun-yarn, so 
as to prevent them fetching way, or moving, when the vessel pitches or 
rolls, you will understand that there is no great -scope' tO' expatiate upon, 
*free oi the table, benches, and 'butkheads of the eabms. While I sat mo> 



am TOM ckutgia's lcwi. 

nopotizmg Aedall light of the lantera, and aecooiring myself as deoenllf 
as the hurry would admit o^ I noticed the officers, in their ni^t-gowna and 
night-caps, as they extricated memselves fiom their coops; and pictn* 
CTsdoe-loolung sabjects enough there were among them, in all conscience. 
At lensth, that is in .about ten ntiinutes from the time we were called, we 
word aU at stations— a gun was firej], and we weighed, and then stood 
out to sea, running^ alons. about font knots, with the land wind right aft. 
Having made an offing of three miles or so, we outran the terrdj and sot be- 
calmed in the belt of smooth water between it an^ the sea-breeze. It was 
striking to see the three merchant ships gradually draw ojjt from the Umd, 
imtil we were all clustered together in a bunch, with half a gale of wind 
curling the blue waves within musket-shot, wMle all was long swell and 
nnooth water with us. At length the breeze reached us, and we made 
sail with our convoy to the southward and eastward, the lumbering mer- 
chantmen crowding every inch of canvass^ while we could hardly keep 
astern, under clos^reefed topsaitfl» foresail, lib, and sp«nker. 

** Pipe to breakfast," said the captain to Mr. Yerk. 

« A sail abeam of us to windward ! " 

** What is she ?" sung out the skipper to the man at the mast-head who 
hadfaailed. 

<* A small achoofter, sir; she has fired a ^n, and luHSted an ensign and 
pennant" 

** How is she steering?** 

^ She has edged away for us, sir.** 

'* Very well. -^ Mr. Terk, make t^ signal for the convoy to stand on.**" 
Then to the boatswain — "Mr. CatweU, have the men. gone to break- 
ftst?" 

'* No, sir, but they are just going." 

** Then pipe belay wifii, break&st for a miaute, will you ? All hands- 
siake sail 1** 

** Crack on, Mr. Yerk, and let us overhaul this small swaggerer." 

In a trice we had all sail set, and wese staggering along- on the larboard 
tack, close upon a wind. "W^ hauled out ^m ue meichant^ships like 
'MBoke, and presently the sdiooner was ^en from the deck. — *' Go to 
l^reakfast now**< The crew disappeared,. aU to the officers, man at the 
lelm, quarter-master at die conn, and (lignal-man. 

The first lieutenant had the l^k open on the drum of the capstan before 
'him. "Make our number,** said the captain. It was dope. *<What 
•does she answer?** 

The si^naVman answered from the foie-rig^g, where he had perched 
lunself with his glass — *^She makes the dgnal to tele^ph, sir » 3, 9, S, 
At the fore, sir" — and so on ;^ which tran£ted was amply this — %" Tli6 
Wave, wildi despatches from t^ admiral.** 

"Oh, he^»»' said Transom; "what is she sent for? Whenever the 
people have got their breakfkst, tack, and stand towards her, Mr. Yerk." 

The little vessel approached. — " Shorten sail, Mr. Yerk, and heave the 
«hip to,** said the captam to the first lieutenant 

" A V av sir ** 

"Ail'hands,'Mr.Catw^l.»* - ' 

Presently the boatsvi^ain^s whistle run^ riiarp and clear, while his gruff 
voice, to which Ua mates bore any thin^ but mellow burdens, edioed 
through the ship. — " All hands shorten sad— foie and mainsails haul up 
ohaul down the jib— in topgallant suls — Aow back the main-tot^ 

saih*' J* r» 

By heavii^-to, we brought the Wave on our weather bow^ She was 
now wiflnn a cable's leng& of the oorf ette ; the ci^[>tain was standing on 
the second foremast gun, on the larboard side, "Mafame,*'— to fab 



•Cmnid,— *<lwi« me t^ ld|r tfvmpuU** >U« buM the litOt v^fuiei-^ 
«* KLq, tbe Wave, ahoy !'» 

• presently the responding " hillo ^ came down the wind to vm fiom the 
officer in command of her, like an echo ~- " tlim under our stem, and heave 
to. to ieewaid.'^ , . 

*' Ay. ay, ar." . . - . > 

As the Wave came to the wmd, she lowered down hw boat, and Mr. 
Jigmaree^ the boatswain of the dockyard in' Jamaica, came on- board, and, 
tosching his hat, presented his despatches to th^ captain. Presently heand 
th/e skipper retired iftto the eabin, and ail hands were inspecting the Wave 
in her new character of one of tus Bdtanpic majesty's cruisers. When I 
lisbd ladt seen her she was a moait beautiful little craft, both in hull and 
rising, i|s ever delighted the eye of a sailor; but the dockyard riggers 
«na carpenters had fairly bedevilled her, at least so far as appearances went. 
fHrat, they had replaced the light rail on her gunwale, by heavy solid bul- 
warks four feet high, surmounted by hammock nettings, ai least another 
foot, so that the symmetrical little vessel, that formerly floated oni the foam 
li^ht as a seagull, now looked like a clumsy dish-shaped Dutch dogger. Her 
long slender wands of masts, whidh used to swig about, as if uiere wei^ 
neiuer shrouds nor stays to support them, were now as taiit and stiff ds 
church steeples, with four heavy shrouds of a side, and stays and Mck- 
.stays, and tne devil knows what all. 

" Now," quoth Tailtackle, <* if them heave-^emrtauts at the yard have 
not taken the speed out of the little beauty, I am a Dutchtnan." Timothe- 
u£, I may state in the by^ing, was nqt a Dutchman ; he was fundament- 
ally any thing but a Dutchman ; but his opinion was sound, and soon veri* 
fied to my cost Jigmaree now approached. 

" The captain wants you in the cabin,, sir,'* said he'. 
I descended, and found the skipper seated at a table, with his clerk be- 
-«ide him, and several open letters lying befbre>him. <* Sit down, Mr. Criiv* 
gle.'* I took a chair. *' There — read that," and he Ihrew an open letter 
across the table to me, which ran as follows : — 

"Sir. 
** The vice-admiraL commanding on the Jamaica station, deshes me to 
«ay, tKat the bearer, the boatswain of ~ihe' dockyard^ Mr. Luk^s Jigmaree, 
has instractions to cru.ise fot, and if possible to faH m with* you, before you 
weather Cape Maize, and falling in with you, to deliver up charge of the 
vessel tp you, as well as of the five negroes, and the pilot, Peter Mangrove, 
wha af^ oi> board of her. The Wave havii^g been armed and fitted 
with ev^ry thin^considered necessary, you are to man her with thirty- 
five of your crew,' including ofl&cers« and to place her under the command 
Ctf Lieut. Thomas Cringle, who is to be furnished with a cop^r of this 
*letter authenticated by your signature, aiid to whom you will give writ- 
•ten instructions, that he is first of all .to cruise in the great Cuba chan- 
iiei, until the' 14th proximo, for the prevention, of piracy, and the sup- 
pression of the slave-trade carried on between tiie island of Cuba and 
the .coast of Africa, and to detain and carry into Havana, or Nassau, 
New Providence, all vessels having slaves, on boards whicli he may 
have reason to believe have been smpped beyond the prescribed limits 
on the African coast, as specifi^ in the margin ; and after the 14th he is 
to proc^ direct to New Providence if unsuccessful, there to land Mr. 
Jigmaree, and the dockyard negroes, and await your return from the north- 
ward, after having seen the merchantmen clear of the Caicospassa^ 
When you have rejoined the Wave at Nassau, you are to proceed with 
her as yonr tender to Crooked Island, and there to await instructions from 
the vice-admiral, which shall be transmitted by the packet to sail on the 



884 9tm OAUraLs'd «o<k 

9th |m>zfmo, to tlie eare of tteyoBttttaiten* -I liate tke hfntrnt to be,^ 
yQW obedient lervant, ^ '* ' ' ,Sec;^ 

''TotheHon.Gaptaiir'rmiMMMB', " . . ' 

To sa^ sooth, I was by no means amoroos of this independent cooh 
mand, i^s an idea had^ -at the time I ^eak o^ gone abroad in Hie navy, that 
lieatenanta, commanding ^tofiXt yesseis, seldom rose higbor, unless though 
extraordinary interest, and t took the liberty of stating my r^ugnance to 
my«captain. 

He smiled, and tlirew over tnother letter to me f n was a private one 
from the admirals secretary, and was as follows : — 

• {ConfiderUidL) 
"My Dear Transom, 

«* The vice-admiral has ^t a bint from Sir -, to kick that wild 

splice, young Cringle, about a bit. It seems he is a pephew of Old Blu&> 
blazes, and as he has taken a fancy to the lad, he has promised his mother 
that he will do his utmost to ^ve him opportunities or being knocked: ea 
the head, for all of which the old lady has professed herself wonderfully in- 
debted. As' tile puppy has peculiar notions, hint, direct^ or indirectly, 
that he is not to be peritkanenny bolted down to the little Wave, and that 
if half a dozen skippers (you, my darling, among the rest) were to evapo- 
rate during the approaching hot months, he may nave some Small chance of 
toother swab. Write me, and mind the claret and cura9oa. Put no ad- 
dress on either ; and on coming to anchor, sent notice to old Peterkin in 
the lodge to' the Master Attendant's, and be will relieve you and the pUs 
de gallOf* some calm.evenuig, of all further trouble regarding them* Don't 
forget the turtle from Crooked Island, and the cigars. 

** Always, nnr dear Transom, 

* " Yours sincerely. 




^^ p»v«.«» ^-.w ~^^^ ..—^ -, J. away , — 

a crew of boys, the little scamp will get bothered, or capsized, in a ji£^. 
All this for your worship's government How do you live with your pas- 
aenser — prune follow, an't ne ? My love t» him. Lady^ — j— 10 dying tb 
9ee mn again,** ' '^» 

" Well, Mn CriAgle, what say you ?" 

*' Of coursef 1 must obey, sir j -^ highly flattered by Mfi Secretary's gpod 
opinion, any how." The captain laughed heartily. 

" It is nearly calm, I see. We must set about manmng this seven^* 
four for you, without delay. • ^o, come along, Captain Cringle." 

When we got on deck, — "Hail the Wave to close, MnYerk,** said 
TransomT . " Lower away the boat, and pipe away the yaulers, boatswain's 
mate " 

Presently the caj)tain and T weje on the Wave's deck, whefTe I was 
much surprised to find no less personages than Pep^rpot Wagtair, and 
Paul Gelid, Escjuires. Mr. Gelid, a conch, or native oithe Bahamas, wad 
the same yawning, drawFipg, long-legged Creole as ever. He had been iU 
with fever, and had asked a passage to Nassau, where his brother was es- 
tablished. At bottom, however, he was an excellent fellow, warm-hearted^ 
hiMiourable, and upright. As for little Wagtail -— oh, he was a delight ! — 

* Custom-house officers, from the resemblance of the broad arrow, or made of MisoMr 
to the impreeeion of a fefWlm fctot 



TOH. CaUTGUD's LOG. S^5 

& smaU round man, with all the Jamaica-Creole irritability of temper, but 
also all the Jamaica wanpth of heart about him — straightforward, and 
•crapulously conscienliouB in hia dealings, but devoted to good chee^ in 
every shape. He had also been ailing, and had adventured on the cruise 
ia otder to sacruit I scarcely know how to describe his figure better than 
by comparing his corpus to an egg, with his little feet stuck through th« 
bottom of the shell ; but he was amazingly active withal. 

Both the captain and myself were rejoiced to see our old friends ; and it 
iwas immediatel3r fixed that they should go on board the corvette, and sling 
their cots alongside of Mr. Bang, so long as the courses of the two vessels 
lay together. This being carried into execution, we set about our arrange- 
taents. Our precious blockheads at the dockyard had fitted a thirty-two 
pound carronade on the pivot, and stuck two long sixes, one on each side 
of the little vessel. I hate carronades. I had, before now, seen thirty-two 
pound shot thrown by them jump off a ship's side with a rebound like a foot- 
ball, when a shot from an eighteen-pounder lon^ gun went crash, at the 
same range, through both sides of the ship, whipping off a leg and arm, 
or atblum a head or two, in its transit 

** My dear sir," said I, ** don't shove me adrift with that old pot there — 
do lend me one of your long brass eighteen-pounders." 

<* Why, Master Cringle, what is your anClpaihy to carronades ?" 
<' I have no absolute antipathy to them, sir — they are all very well in 
their way. For instance, I wish you would fit me with two twelve-pound 
carronades instead of these two popgun lon^ sixes.. These, with thirty 
muskets, and thirty-five men or so, would make me very complete." 
^ A modest request,*' said Captain Transom. 

*' Now, Tom Cringle, you have overshot your mark, my fine fellow," 
thought 1 ; but it was all right, and that forenoon tl^e cutter was hoisted 
out with the guns in her, and the others dismounted and sent back in ex- 
change ; and in fine, after three days* hard work, I took the command of 
H. B. M. schooner Wave, with Timothy Tailtackle as gunner, the senior 
midahipman as master, one of the carpenter's crew as carpenter, and a 
boatswain's mate as boatswain, a surgeon's mate as surgeon, the cap- 
tain's clerk as purser, and thirty forema^men, besides the blackies^ as 
the crew. But the sailing of the little beauty had beep regulariy spoiled. 
We could still in light winds weather on the corvette, it is true, hot 
then she was a slow top, unless it blew half a gale of wind ; and as 
for going anything free, why a sand barge would have beaten us, — We 
kept company with the Firebrand until we weathered Cape Maize* It 
was near five o^clock in the afternoon, the coiVette was about half a mile 
on our lee-bow, when, while walking the deck, ailer an early dinner, Tail* 
tackle came up to me. 

" The Commodore has hove to, sir." 

" Very like," said I ; « to allow the merchant-slups to close, I presume." 
« A gun," said little Reefpoint. " Ah — what signal now ?»» — It was 
the signal to close. 

«* Put the helm up and run down to him," said I. It was done— and prea« 
entiy the comfortable feeling of bowling along before the breeze succeeded 
the sharp yerking digging motion of a little vessel, tearing and pitching 
thiough a head sea, close upon a wind. The water was buzzing under 
our bows, and we were once more close under the stem of the corvette. 
There was a boat alongside ready manned. The captain hailed, ** I send 
your orders on board, Mr. Cringle, to bear up on your separate cruise.** 
At the satire moment, the Firebrand's ensign and pennant were hoisted — 
we did the same — a gun from the Commodore — ditto from the tidy little 
Wave — and lo I Thomas Cringle, esquire, launched for the first time on 
his own bottom. 
46—3 



SS6 TOM CRIITGLB 8 LOO. 

By this thne the boat was alongside, with Messiean Aaron Bang, Pep- 
poipot Wagtail, and Paul Gelid —the fonner with his cot, and half a dozen 
cases of wine, and some pigs, and some poultry, all under the charge of his 
black servant. 

** HJllct," said I — <* Mr. Wagtail is at home hitre, you know, Blr. Bang, 
and BO is Mr. Gelid ; but to what lucky chance am I indebted for yovr so- 
ciety, my dear sir?** 

** Thank your stars, Tom — O^toin Cringle, I beg pardon— and be 
grateful ; I am sick of rumbling tumbling in company, with these heavy 
tools of merchantmen, so I entreated Transom to let me go and take a turn 
with ydn, promising to joiu the Firebrand again at Nassau.'* 

" vVliv, 1 am delighted,*' — and so I really was. ** But, my dear sir — I 
may lead you a dance, and, peradvonture, into trouble —a small vessel may 
catch a Tartar, you know." 

<< Damn the expense," rejoined my jovial ally ; ** why, the hot little epi- 
curean Wagtail, and Gelid, cold and frozen as he is, have both taken a 
fimcy to me — and no wonder, knowing my pleasant qualities as they do 
— ahem ; so, for their sakes, I volunteer on this piece of kni^it-errantrjr as 
much as " 

'* Poo — you be starved, Aaron dear," rapped out little Wastul ; <* you 
came here, because you thought you should have more fun, and escape the 
formality of the big ship, and eke the captain's sour claret** 

"Ah," said Gelid, «my fine fellow," with his usual Creole drawl, 
"you did not wait for my opinion. Ah — oh — why, Captain Cringe, a 
thousand pardons. Friend Bari^, there, swears that he can't do without you ; 
and all he says about me is neither more nor less than humbug — ah.^' 

" My lovdly vellQWsnake," quoth Aaron, '* and my amiable dumpling, 
gentlemen both, now, do hold you tonmies. —Why, Tom, here we are, 
never you mind how, after half a quarrel with the skipper — will yon take 
us, or will you send us back, like rejected addresses ?" 

" Send you back, my bovs t No, no, too happy to get you." Another 
gun from the corvette. " t'irebrands, you must shove off. My compli- 
ments, Wiggins, to the captain, and there's a trifle for -you to drink my 
health, when you get into port" The boat shoved off — the corvette filled 
her maintopsail. "J'ut the helm down — ease off the mainsheet — stand 
by to run up the squaresail. How is her head, Mr. Tailtackle ?" 

Timothy gave a most extraordinary grin at mv bestowing the Mister on him 
for the first time. 

" North-west, sir." 

" Keep her so" — and having bore up, we rapidly widened our distance 
from the Commodore and the fleet ■ 

All men know, or should know, that on board of a man-of-wiar, there 
is never any " yo-heave-oh'ing." That is confined to merchant vessels. 
But when the crew are having a strong pull of any rope, it is allowable for 
the man next the belaying pin, to sing out, in order to give unity to the drag, 
" One — two — three," uie strain of the other men increasing with the 
figure. The tack of the mainsail had got jammed somehowj and on my 
desiring it to be hauled up,'the men, whose province it was, wero unable to 
start it 

" Something foul aloft," said I. 

Tailtackle came up. " What are you fiddling at, men ? Give me hero— 
one — two — three." 

Crack went the strands of the rope under the paws of the Titan, where- 
by the head of the outermost sailor pitched right into Gelid's stomach, 
knocked him over, and capsized him headforemost into the wind-sail which 
was let down throu^ihe skylight into the little well cabin of the aehooner.' 



Ttm ORijroLB's LOfi. 337 

It 80 happened that there was a bucket fall of Spamsh brown paint ataad- 
ing on tne table in the cabin, right below the hoop of the canvass funnel, 
and into it popped the august pate of Paul Gelid, iSsquire. Bang had, in 
the mean time, caught him by the heels, and with the assistance of Pearl, 
the handsome negro formerly noticed, who, from his steadiness, had been 
spared to me as aauarter-master, the conch was once more hoisted on dedL, 
with a scalp of reo paint, reaching down over his eyes. 

** I say," quoth Bang, '* Gelid my darling, not quite so smooth as 
the real Macassar, eh 1 Shall i try my hand — can shave beautifully 
{—eh?" 

I " Ah," drawled Gtelid, ** don*t require it — lucky my head was shaved in 
that last fever, Aaron dear. Ah — let me think — you tall man — you sai- 
lor-fellow — ah — do me the favour to scrape me with yonr knife — ah — 
and pray call my servant. 

Timothy, to wh6m he had addressed himself, set to, and scraped the red 
paint off his poll ; and having called his servant, Chew Chew, handed him 
over to the negro, who, giving his arm to him, helped him below, and with 
the assistance of Cologne water, contrived to scrub him decently clean. 

As the evening fell^the breeze freshened ; and during the night it blew 
strong, so that from the time we bore up, and parted company with the 
Fir^rand, until day-dawn next morning, we had run 130 miles or thereby 
to the northward and westward, and were then on the edge of the Great 
Bahama Bank. The breeze now failed us, and we lay roasting in the sun 
until mid-day, the current sweeping us to the northward, and still farther 
on the bank, until the water shoaled to three fathoms. At this time the sun 
was blazing fiercely right overhead ; and from the shallowness of the water, 
there was not the smallest swell, or undulation of the surface. The sea, 
as far as the eye could reach, was a sparkling light green, from the snow- 
white sand at the bottom, as if a level desert had been suddenly submerged 
under a few feet of crystal clear water, which formed a cheery spectacle, 
when compared with the customary leaden or dark blue colour oi the roll- 
ing fathomless ocean. It was now dead calm. — ''Fishing lines there — 
IdTers, fishing lines," said I ; and in a minute there were forty of them down 
over the side. 

In Europe, fish in their shapes partake of the sedate character of the peo- 

rle who inhabit the coasts of the seas or rivers in which ^ey swim — at feast 
think so. The salmon, the trout, the cod, and all the other tribes of the 
finny people, are reputable in their shapes, and altogether respectable-look- 
ing creatures. But, within the tropics, Dame^ Nature plays strange vaga- 
ries; and here, on the great Bahama Bank, 'every new customer, as ne 
floundered in oa deck — no joke to him, poor fellow —elicited shouts of 
laughter from the crew. They were in no respect shaped hke fish of our 
cold climates ; some were all head — others all tail — some, so iar as shape 
went, had their heads where, with submission, I conceived their tails should 
have been ; and then the colours, the intense brilliancy of the scales of these 
monsfroti^-looking animals ! We hooked up a lot of bonitoe, 101b. a piece, 
at the least. But Wagtail took small account of them. 

** Here,*' said Bang, at this moment, *< bv all that is wonderful, look 
here !** And he drew up a fish about a foot long, with a crop like a pigeon 
of the tumbler kind, which began to make a loua snorting noise. 

** Ah," drawled Gelid, ** good fish, with claret sauce." 

" Dare say," rejoined Aaron ; " but do your Bahama fish speak, Paul, eh ? 
— Balaam's ass was a ioke to this fellow." 

I have already said that the water was not quite three fathoms deep, and 
it was so clear that [ could see down to the very sand, and there were the 
fish cruising about in great numbers. 



^g TOM CRUfOLE's LOG* 

«« Haul in, Wagtail — you have hooked him," and up came a beautiful 
black grouper, about four pounds weight. • r • ♦ -* 

« AE, there is the regular jiggcry-jiggery," sung out little Reefpomt, at 
the same moment, as he in turn began to pull up his Ime. Stond by to 
land him,*' and a red snapper, for all the world like a gigantic gold bsh, was 
hauled on board : and bo we carried on, black snappers, red snappers, and 
rock fish, and a vast variety, for all of which, however, Wagtail Imd names 
pat, until at length I caught a most lovely dolphin — a beauty to look at — - 
but dry, terrible dry to eat. I cast it on the deck, and the cameleon tints ot 
Che dying fish, about which so many lies have been said and sung, were 
just begining to fade, and wax pale, and ashy, and deathUke, when I felt 
another strong jiggery-iiggery at my line, which httle Reefpomt had, in the 
mean time, bailed afresh. " Zounds I I have caught a whale — a shark at 
the very least " -7 and I pulled him in hand over hand. 

<< A most noble Jew fish," said 1. 

"A Jew fish!" resDonded Wagtail 

" A Jew fish !*' saia Aaron Bane. 

<< A Jew fish !" said Paul GelidT 

« My dear Cringle," continued Wagtail, " when do you dine ?" 

" At three, as usual/' 

« Then, Mr. Reefpoint, wdll vou have the great kindness to cast off your 
sink, and hook that splendid fellow by the tail — only through the gnsUe 

— don't prick hiin in the flesh — and let him meander about till half-past 
two?" 

Reefy was half inclined to be angry at the idea of his majesty's officer 
being converted into a cook's mate. 

" Why," said I, *« we shall put him in a tub of water, here on deck, 
Mr. Wagtail, if you please.'* 

" God bless me, no !" quoth the gastronome. «* Why, he is strong as 
an eagle, and will smash himself to mumniiy in half an hour in a tub. No 

— no — see, he weighs twelve pounds at the very lightest. Lord ! Mr. 
Cringle, I am surprised at you." 

The fish was let overboard asain, according to his desire, and hauled in 
at the very moment he indicated by his watch, when, having seen him cut 
up and cleaned, with his own eyes — I believe I may say with his own 
hands — he betook himself to his small crib to dress. 

At dinner our Creole friend was very entertaining. Bang drew him out, 
and had him to talk on all his favourite topics, in a most amusing manner. 
All at once Gelid lay back on his chair. 

" My God," said he, " I have broken my tooth with that Confounded 
hard biscuit — terrible — really ; ah !" — and he screwed up his face, as ii 
he had been eating sourcrout, or had heard of the death ot a dear friend. 
" Poo," quoth Aaron, *' any combmaker will furnish you forth as good 
as new ; those grinders you brag of are not your own, Gelid, you know 
that." 

" Indeed, Aaron, my dear, I know nothing of the kind ; but this I know, 
that I have broken a most lovely white front tooth, ah !" 

" Oh, you be hanged," said Aaron ; " why, you have been bechopped 
any time these ten years, I know." 

•The time wore on, and it might have been half past seven when we went 
on deck. '^ 

It was a very dark night — Tailtackle had the watch. " Anything in 
sight, Mr. Tailtackle?" 

** Why, no, sir ; but I have just asked your steward for your night-filas9« 
as, once or twice — but ^t is so thick — Pray, sir, how far are we off the 
Hole in the Wall ?" 
"Why, sixty miles at the least" 



TOM ceutglb's ixn> S39 

Thie Hole in the Wall is a veiy remarkable rock in the Crooked Idand 
Passage, greatly resembling, as the name betokens, a wall breached by the 
sea, or bjr battering cannon, which rises abruptly oat of the water, to a 
height 01 forty feet 

*< Then," quoth Tailtackle sharply, ** there must be a sail close aboeid 
of US, to windward there/' 

" Where ?" said I. " Gtuick, send for my night-glass." 

** I have it here in my hand, sir.'* 

" Let me see " — and I peered through it until my eyes ached a«un. I 
could see nothing, and resumed my widk on the quarter-deck. Tautackle, 
m the mean time, continued to look through the telescope, and as I turned 
from aft to walk forward, a few minutes uler this — << Wbf, sir," said he, 
** it clears a bit, and I see the object that has puzzled me a^n." 

" Eh ? jBiTe me the glass " — in a second I caught it "j3y Jupiter, you 
Bay true, Tailtackle ! beat to quarters — quick — clear away the long gun 
forward there !" 

All was busde for a minute. I kept my eye on the object, but I could 
not make out more, than that it was a strange sail ; but I could neither 
judge of her size nor her rig, from the distance, and the extreme darkness 
of the ni^ht. At length I handed the glass to Tailtackle again. We were 
at this time standing in towards the Cuba shore, with a fine breeze, and 
goinv alon^ seven knots, as near as could be. 

" Give tne glass to Mr. Jigmaree, Mr. Tailtackle, and come forward 
here, and see all snug." 

The long gun was slewed round — both carronades were run out, all three 
bein^ loaded, double-shotted, and carefully primed — the whole crew, with 
our black supernumeraries, being at quarters. 

" I see her quite distinct now, sir," sung out Timotheus. 

** Well, what looks she like?" 

" A large brig, sir, by the wind on the same tack — you can see her now 
without the glass — there — with the naked eye." 

I looked and certainly fancied I saw some towering object rising high 
and dark to windward, like some mighty spectre walking the deep, but i 
could discern nothing more. 

" She is a large vessel, sure enough, sir," said Timothy once more — " now 
she is hauling up her courses, sir — she takes in topgallant sails — why, 
she is bearing up across our bows, sir — mind she donU rake us." 

" The deuce !" said I. I now saw the chase very distinctly bear up. 
** Put the helm up — keep her away a bit — steady — that will do — fire a 
shot across her bows, Mr. Tailtackle — and, Mr. Reefpoint, show the 
private signal.^' The gun was fired, and the lights shown, but our spectral 
friend was all darkness and silence. " Mr. Scarfemwell," said I to the 
carpenter, <' stand by the long ^n. Tailtackle, I don't like that chap — 
open the magazine." By this time the strange sail was on our quarter— 
we shortened sail, while he, finding that his mancauvre of crossing our bows 
had been foiled by our bearing up also, got the foretack on board again, and 
set his topgallant sails, all very cleverly. He was not far out of pistol shot 
Tailtackle, in his shirt and trousers, and felt shoes, now stuck his head up 
the main hatchway. 

« I would recommend your getting the hatches on, sir — that fellow is 
not honest, sir, take my word for it" 

«* Never mind, Mr. Tailtackle, never mind. Forward, there j Mr. Jig- 
maree, slap a round into him, since he won't speak or heave to—- right 
between his masts, do you hear — are you ready 7" 

« AU ready, sir." ^ 

Tire." The gun was fired, ai^ simultaneously we heard a erash on 

3» 



240 TOM criitolb's loo. 

board the strange sail, followed by a piercins yell, similar to what the 
DAgroes raise over a dead comrade, and then alon^ melancholy, howl. 

^ A slarer, and the shot has fold, sir,*' said Mr. Uandlead, the master. 

** Then we shall have some fun for it,'* thought I. I had scarcely spoken, 
when the brig once more shortened sail ; ana the instant that the roresail 
rose, he let fly his bow gun at us — then another, another, and another. 

** Nine guns of a side, as 1 am a sinner," quoth Jigmaree ; and three of 
the shot struck us, mortally wounded one poor fellow, and damaged poor 
little Reefy by a splinter in the side. 

" Stand by, men — take good aim — fire " — and ^e again let drive the 
long gun and carronade ; but our friend was too quick for us, for by thid 
time he had once more hauled his wind, and made sail as close to it as he 
could stagger. We crowded everything in chase, but he had the heels of 
us^ and in an hour he was once more nearly out of sight in the dark night, 
light to windward. 

*' Keep at him, Mr. Jigmaree ;** and as I feared he was running us in 
under the land, I dived to consult the chart. There, in the cabin, I found 
Wagtail, Gklid, and Bang, sitting smoking on each side of the small tablej 
with some brandy and water before them. 

'* Ah," quoth Gelid, *' ah 1 fighting a little? Not pleasant in the evening 
certainly.** 

*< Confound you," said Aaron, "why will you bother at this awkward 
noment ?" 

Meanwhile Wagtail was a good deal discomposed. 

•*My dear fellow, hand me over that devilled Discuit*' 

Bang handed him over the dish, slipping into it some fragments of ship 
biscuit, as hard as flint All this time I was busy poring over the chart 
Wagtail took up a piece and popped it into his moutn. 

*• Zounds, Bang — my dear Aaron, what dentist are you in league with? 
Gelid first breaks his pet fang, and now you '* 

"Poo, poo," quoth his fnend, "don't bother now— hillo — what the 
deuce — I say. Wagtail — Gelid, my lad, look there " — as one of the sea- 
men, with another following him, brought down on his back the poor fellow 
who had been wounded, and laid his bloody load on the table. To those 
who are unacquainted with these matters, it may be right to say, that the 
captain*s cabin, in a small vessel like the Wave, is often in an emergency 
used as a cockpit — and so it was in the present instance, 

"Beg pardon, Captain and {gentlemen," said the surgeon, " but I must 
I fear, perform an ugly operation on this poor fellow. I fancy you haa 
better go on deck, gentlemen." 

Now I had an opportunity to see of what sterling metal my friends were 
at bottom tiaade. Mr. Bang in a twinkling had his coat off. 

" Doctor, I can be of use, I know it — no skill, but steady nerves," — * 
although he had reckoned a leetle without his host here, — " And I can 
■wathe a bandage too, although no surgeon," said Wagtail. 

Gelid said nothing, but he was in the end the best surgeon's mate among 
them. The poor fellow, Wiggins, one of the captain's gigs, and a most 
excellent man, in quarter-deck parlance, was now laid on the table — a fine 
handsome young fellow, faint and pale, very pale, but courageous as a lion, 
even in his extremity. It appeared that a round shot had shattered his- leg 
above the knee. A tourniquet had been applied on his thigh, and there 
was not much bleeding. 

" Captain," said the poor fellow, while Bang supported him in his arms 
— " I shall do yet, sir ; indeed I have no great pain." 

All this time the surgeon was cutting ofi" his trousers, and Uien, to be 

rare, a terrible spectacle presented itself^ The foot and leg, blue and 

^ shrunk, were connected with the thigh by a band of muscle about twe 



TOM CAINQLS'S LOG. 341 

isches wide, and an inch thick ^ that fined awa j to a bunch of white ten- 
doDJi or einewB at the knee, which again swelled out as they melted into 
the muscles of the calf of the leg ; but as for the knt^-bone, it was smasb> 
ed to pieces, leaving white spikes protruding from the shattered limb above 
as well as from the shank beneath. The doctor gave the poor fellow a 
large dose of laudanum in a glass of brandy, and then proceeded to ampu- 
tate the limb, high up on the thigh. * Bang stood the knife part ot it 
▼ery steadily, but the mstant the saw rasped against the shattered bone be 
shuddered. 

'** I am goina Cringle — can't stand that — sick as a dog ** — and he was 
so faint that I had to relieve him in supporting the poor fellow. Wagtail 
had also to go on deck, but Paul Gelid remained firm as a rock. The nmb 
w^as cut off, the arteries taken up very cleverly, and the surgeon was in the 
act of* slacking the tourniquet a little, when the thread that fastened the 
largest, or femoral artery, suddenly gave way — a ^ush like the jet fron) a 
fire-engine took place. The poor feUow had just time to cry out, ** Take 
that cold hand off my heart !" when his chest collapsed, his jaw fell, and in 
an instant bis pulse stopped. 

" Dead as Julius Cssar, Captaip," said Gelid, with his usual delibera- 
tion. Dead enough, thought I ; and I was leaving the cabin to resume 
my post on deck, when I stumbled against something at the ladder foot 

"Why, what is that?" grumbled 1. 

^ It is me, sir,'* said a small faint voice. 

** You ! who are you V* 

" Reefpoint, sir." 

•• Bless me, boy, what are you doin^ here ? Not hurt, I hope ?" 

** A little, sir — a graze from a sphnter, sir — the same shot that struck 
poor Wiggins knocked it off, sir." 

" Whjr did you not go to the doctor, then, Mr. Reefpoint ?" 

'< I waited till he was done with Wiggins, sir ; but now, since it is all 
OTer with him, I will go and be dressed.'" 

His voice grew fainter and fainter, until I could scarcely hear him. I 
got him in my arms, and helped him into the cabin, where, on stripping the 
poor little fellow, it was found that he was much hurt on the ri^ht side, just 
above' the hip. Bang's kind heart, for by this time a glass of water had 
cured him of his faintness, shone conspicuous on this occasion. 

** Why, Reefy — httle Reefy —you are not hurt, my man — Surely yoq 
are not wounded — such a little fellow, — I should have as soon thought of 
firing at a musquito.'* 

" Indeed, sir, hut I am ; see here." — Bang looked at the hurt, as he sup- 
ported the wounded midshipman in his arms. 

"God help me," said the excellent fellow, "you seem to me fitter for 
your mother's nursery, my poor dear boy, than to be knocked about in this 
coarse way here." 

Reefy, at this moment, fell over into his arms, in a dead faint 

" You must take mv berth, with the captain's permission," said Aaron, 
while he and Wagtail undressed him with the greatest care, and placed 
him in the narrow crib. 

« Thank you, niy dear sir," moaned little Reefpoinfj «* were my mother 
here, sir, she would thank you too." 

" Stem duty now called me on deck, and I heard no more. The night 
was still verv dark, and I coald see nothing of the chase, but I made all 
the sail I could in the direction which I calculated she would steer, trusting 
that, l^efore morning, we might get another glimpse of her. In a little while 
Bang came on deck. 

" I say, Tom, now since Tittle Reefy is asleep — what think you — big 
craft that —nearly caught a Tartar — not very sorry he has escaped, eh ?»» 



348 TOM caivoLx's log. 

''Why, my dear air, I trust he has not. eticaped ; I hope, when the day 
breaks, now since we have less wind, that we may have a tussle with faini 
yet" 

"No, you don't wish it, do you, really and truly ?*• 

" Indeed, I do, sir ; and the only thing which bothers me is the peril that 
you and your friends must necessarily encounter.'' 

"Poo, poo, don't mind us, Tom, don't mind us ; but ant he too big for 
you, Tom ?»' 

He said this in such a comical way, that, for the life of me, I could not 
help laughing. 

^ '* Why, we shall see ; but attack him I must, and shall, if I can get at 
him. However, we shall wait till morping ; so I recommend your turning 
in, now since they have cleared away the cockpit out of the cabin ; so good 
night, my dear sir — I must stay here, I fear." 

<' Good-night, Tom ; God bless you. I shall go and comfort Wagtail 
and Paul." 

I was at this time standing well aft on the larboard side of the deck, 
close abaft of the tiller-rope, so that, with no earthly disposition to be an 
eavesdropper, I could neither help seeing nor hearing what was goin^ on 
in the cabm, as the small open skylight was close to my foot. All vestiges 
of the cockpit had been cleared away, and the table was laid for supper. 
Wa^il and Gelid were sitting on the side I stood on, so that I/^could not 
see uiem, although I heard every word they said. Presently Bang entered, 
and sat down opposite )iis allies. He crossed his arms, and leaned down 
over the table, looking at them steadily. 

** My dear Aaron," I could hear little Wagtail say, " speak, man, dtrn't 
fiighten a body so." 

"Ah, Bang," drawled out Paul, "jests are good, beins well-timed: 
what can you mean by that face of yours noto, since the fighting is all 
over ?" 

My curiosity fairly overcame my good manners, and I moved round mom 
amidships, so as to command a view of both parties, as they sat o{^pO0ite 
each other at the narrow table. 

Bang still held his peace for another minute ; at length, in a very solemn 
tone, he said, " Grentlemen, do you ever say your prayers ?" I don't know 
if I mentioned it before, but Aaron had a most musical deep mellow voice, 
and now it absolutely thrilled to my very soul. 

Wagtail and Paul looked at him, and then at each other, with a most 
absurd expression — between fear and jest — between crying and laughing 
— but gave him no answer. 

" Are you, my lads, such blockheads as to be ashamed to acknowledge 
that you sajr your prayers ?" 

" Ah," said Gelid, " why, ah no — not — that is " 

" Oh, you Catholics are all so bigoted, — I suppose we should cross our- 
selves, en ?" said Wagtail hastily. 

" I am a Catholic, Master Wagtail," rejoined Bang — " better than no- 
thing. Before sunrise, we may both have proved the truth of our creeds, 
if you have one ; but if you mean it as a taunt, Wagtail, it does discredit 
to your judgment to select such a moment, to say nothing of your heart 
However, you cannot make me angry with you, Pepperpot, you little Creole 
wasp, do as you will." A slight smile here curled Aaron's lip for an in- 
stant, although he immediately resumed the solemn tone in which he had 
previously spoken. — "But I had hoped that two such old friends as you 
both have been to me, would not altogether have made up their minds in 
cold blood, if advertised of their danger, to run the chance of dying like 
dogs in a ditch, without one preparatory thought towards that tremendous 
Being, before whom we may all stand before morning." 



TOM cringlb's log. 24S 

** Murder !" quoth Wagtail, fairly frightened ; " Are you reaXiy serious, 
Aaron ? I did not — would not, for the world, hurt your leelings in eamesty 
my dear ; why do you desire so earnestly to know whether or not I ever 
say my prayers 1" . 

" Oh, don*t bother, man," rejoined Bang, resuming his usual friendly 
tone ; '^ you had better say boldly that you do not, without any round- 
aboutation." 

" Bjit why, my dear Bang, why do you ask the question ?" persisted 
"Wagtail, in a deuced quandary. 

" Simply," — and here our Oriend's voice once more fell to the low deep 
serious tone in which he had opened the conference, —^ simply because, 
in my humble estimation, if you don't say your prayers to-night, it is three 
to one you shall never pray again." 

•* The deuce !" said Pepperpot, twisting himself in all directions, as if his 
inexpressibles had been nailed to his seat, and he was trying to escape from 
them. " What, in the devil's name, mean you, man ?» 

<* I mean neither more nor less than what I sav. I speak English, don't 
I ? 1 say, that that pestilent young fellow Cringle told me half an hour ago, 
that he was determinedy as he words it, to stick to this Guineaman, who is 
three times his size, has eighteen guns, while Master Tommy has only 
three ; and whose crew, I will venture to say, triples our number ; and the 
snipe, from what I know of him, is the very man tp keep his word — so what 
say you,'^my darling, eh ?'* 

" Ah, very inconvenient, ah, — I shall stay below," said Paul. 

" So shall I," quoth Pepperpot ; " won't stick my nose on deck, Aaron 
dear, no, not for the whole world." 

" Why," said Bang, in the same steady low tone, " you shall do as you 
plea.se, c^;" — and here he very successfully iniitated our amigo Gelid's 
drawl — " and as best suits you, ah ; but I l&iL^e consulted the gunner, an 
old ally of mine, who, to be plain with you — ah — says that the danger 
from splinter wounds below is much greater than from their mtisketry on 
deck — ah — the risk from the round shot being pretty equal — ah — in 
either situation." At this announcement you could Have jumped down 
either Wagta'd's or Gelid's throat, — Wa^ail'sfor choice, — without touch-^ 
ing their teeth. '^ Farther, the aforesaid Timothy, and be hansed to him^ 
deponeth, that the only place in a small vessel where we could have had a 
moderate chance of safety was the Run, — so called, I presume, from peo* 

fie running to it for safety ; but where the deuce this sanctuary is situated 
know not, nor does it greatly signify, for it is now converted into a spare 
powder magazine, and of course sealed to us. So here we are, m^r lads, in 
as neat a tSumg as ever three unfortunate gentleman were in, in this weary 
world. However, now since I have comforted you, let us go to bed — time 
enough to think on all this in the morninor, and I am consumedly tired." 

I heard no more, and resumed my solitary walk on deck, peering every 
now and then through the ni^ht-glass, until my eyes ached again. The 
tedious night at length wore away, and the gray dawn found me sound 
asleep, leaning out at the gangway. They had scarcely begun to wash down 
the decks, when we discerned our friend of the preceding night, about four 
miles to windward, close hauled on the same tack, apparently running in 
for the.Cuba shore, as fast as canvass could carry him. If this wp-s his ob- 
ject, we had proved too quick for him, as by casting off stays, and slacking 
shrouds, arid, in every way we could think of loosening the rigid trim of the 
little vessel, we had in a great measure recovered her sailing ; so when he 
found he was cut off from the land, he resolutely bore up, took in his top- 
^llant sails, haulfed up his courses, fired a gun, and hoisted his large Span- 
ish ensign, sdl in regular man-of-war fashion. By this .time it was broad 
daylight, and Wagtail, Gelid, and Bang, were all three on deck, performin 



a 

o 



d44 T(^ cringle's loo. 

their morning aUutions. As for myself, I was well forward, near the long 
gun. Pegtop, Mr. Bang's black valet, came up to me. 
<* Please, Massa Captain, can you spare me any muskets 1^ 
** Any muskets ?" said 1 ; ** why, half a dozen if you choose." 
** De wery number my massa told me tohax for. Tank you, Massa 
Captain." And forthwith he and the other two black servants in attend- 
ance on Wagtail and Gelid, each seized his two muskets out of the arm- 
diest, with the .corresponding ammunition, and, like so many sable Robin- 
son Crusoes, were stumping aft, when I again accosted the aforesaid 
Pegtop. 

** I say, my man, now since you have got the muskets, does your master 
really intend to fight?" The negro stopped short, and faced right round, 
his countenance expressing very great surprise and wonderment. ** Massa 
Bang fight ? Massa Aaron Bang fight ?" and he looked up in my face with 
the most serio-comic expression that could be imagined. ** Ah^ Massa," 
continued the poor fellow, — " yon is joking — surely you is joking — my 
Massa Aaron Bang fight? Oh, massa, surely you can't know he — surely 

Jou never see him shoot snipe, and wild-duck — oh dear, why him kill wild- 
uck on de wing — ah, me often see him knock down teal wid single ball, 
«ne hundred — ah, one hundred and fifty yards — and man surely more 
big mark den teal V* 

" Qranted," I said ; "but a teal has not a loaded musket in its claws, as 
a Spanish bucanier may have — a small difference, Master Pegtop, in 
that?'» 

" None at all, master," chimed in Pegtop, very energetically — **I my- 
shef, Gabriel Pegtop, Christian man as me is, am oneof de Falmouth bladi 
shot Ah, I have been in de woods wid Massa Aaron — one time particu- 
lar, when dem worry debils. Sambo Moses, Corromiintee Tom, and Eboe 
Peter, took to de bush at Crabyaw estate — after breakfast — ten black 
shot — me was one — go out. along wid our good massa, Massa Aaron. 
Oh Lord, we walk troo de cool wood, and over de hot cleared ground, six 
hour, when every body say, — * No use dis, Massa Bang — all we tired too 
much — must stop here — kindle fire— cook wittal.' * Ah, top denL who 
hab white liver,' said Massa Aaron; < you, Pegtop, take you fusee and 
cutlass, and follow me, my shild > — Massa Aaron alway call me him sJKBd^ 
and troo enough, as parson Calaloo say, him family wery much like Joseph 
coat — many colour among dem, massa — though none quite so deep as mine 
eider " — and here the negro ^nned at his own jest ** Well, I was follow 
him, or rader was so before him, opening up de p^ss wid me cutlass, troo 
de wery tangle underwood. We walk lour hour — see no one — all still 
and quiet — no breeze shake de tree — oh, I sweat too much — dem hot, 
massa — sun shine right down, when we could catch glimpse of him — yet 
no trace of de runaways. At length on turning comer, perched on small 
platform -of rock, overshadowed by plumes of bamboos, like ostrich feather 
lady wear at de ball, who shall we see but dem wery dividual dam rascail I 
was mention, standing all tree, each wid one carabine pointed at us, at him 
shoulder, and cutlass at him side ? * Pegtop, my boy,' said Massa Aaron, 
we is in for it — follow me, but don't fire.' So him pick off Sambo Moses 
— oh! cool as one cucumber. *Now,' say he, *man to man,' — and wid 
dat him tro him ^un on de ground, and drawing him cutlass, we push up— 
in one moment him and Corromantee Tom close. Tom put up him hand to 
fend him head — '^hip — ah — massa cutlass shred de hand at de wrist, like 
one earrot — down Tom go — atop of him jump Massa Aaron. T master 
de leetle one, Eboe Peter, and we carry dem both prisoners into Falmouth. 
— Massa Aaron fight ? Ah, masfia, no hax dat question again." 

« Well, but wfll Mr. Gelid fight ?" said I. 



TOM CKOIOLSS z.oa. 346 

^ I ti&k him will too — great friend of Massa Bang — good duck-shot too 
— oh yes, tink Massa Paul will fight" 

"Why,?* said I, "your friends are all heroes, Pegtop — will Mr. Wag- 
tail fight also ?" He stole close up to me, and exchanged hii smart Creole 
gibberish for a quiet sedate accent as he whispered — 

** Not so sure of he — nice little fat man, but too fond of him belly. 
When I wait behind Massa Aaron chair, Pegtop sometime hear funny ting. 
One gentleman say — < Ah. dat month we hear Lord Wellington take Saint 
Sebastian — when dat is, wnat time we hear dat news, Massa Wagtail?' 
him say. — ' Eh,' say Massa Wagtail — * oh, we hear of dem news, dat 
wery day de first of cie ringtail pigeon come to market.' Den again, *Dat 
big fight dem had at soch anoder placie, when we hear of dat, Massa Wag- 
tail V say somebody else. — < Oh^ oh, de wery day we hab dat beautiful 
grouper wid claret sauce at Massa Whiffle^s.' Oh, make me laugh to hear 
white gentleman mark great fight in him memory by what him eat de day 
de news come ; so, Massa Captain Cringle, me no quite sure weder Massa 
Wagtail will fight or no.'^ 

So saying, Fegtop,-Chew Chew, and Yampea, each shouldered two 
muskets a pi^ce, and betook themselves to the afterpart of the schooner, 
where they forthwith set themselves to scour, and oil, and clean the same, 
in a most skilful manner. I expected the breeze would have freshened as 
the day broke, but I was disappointed ; it fell, towards six o'clock, nearly 
calm. Come, thought I, we may as well go to breakfast ; and my guests 
and I forthwith sat down to our morning meal. Soon after, the wmd died 
away altogether — and **out sweeps" was the word; but I soon saw we 
had no chance with the chase at this game, and as to attacking him with 
the boats, it was entirely out of the question ; neither could I, in the pros- 
pect of a battle, affbsd to murder- the people, by pulling all day under a 
roasting sun,, a^nst one who could man his sweeps with relays of slaves, 
without one of his crew putting a finger to them ; sot reluctantly laid them 
in, and there I stood loosing at him the whole forenoon, as he gradually 
drew ahead of us. At length I piped to dinner, and the men having finish- 
ed theirs, were aj^ain on deck ; but the calm still continued ; and seeing 
no chance of its Seshening, about four in the afternoon we sat down to ours 
in the cabin. There was Kttle said ; my friends, although brave and reso- * 
lute men, were naturally happy to see the brig creeping away from us, as 
fitting could only brin^ them danger ; and my own feelings were of that 
mixed quahty, that white I determined to do all I could to bring him to ac- 
tion, it would not have broken my heart had he escaped. We had scarcely 
finished dinner, however, when the rushing of the water past the run of the 
little vessel, and the steadiness with which she skimmed along, showed 
that the bght air had freshened. 

Presently Tailtackle came down. " The breeze has set down, sir ; the 
stranse sail has got it strong to windward, and brings it aloiilg with him 
cheemy." 

" Beat to quarters, then, Tailtackle ; all hands stand by to shorten sail. 
How is she standing ?" 

" Right down for us, sir." 

I went on deck, and there was the Guineaman about two miles to wind- 
waid, evidently cleared for action, with her decks crowded with men, bowl- 
ing along steadily under hef sinffle-reefed topsails. 

I saw all clear. Wagtail and Gelid had followed me on deck, an^ were 
now busy with their black servants inspecting the muskets. But Bang still 
remained in the cabin. I went down. He was gobbling his last plantain, 
and forking up along with it most respectable slices of cheese, when I 
entered. 

I had seen before I left the deck that an action was now unavoidable^ 



•46 TOM CXIKei.B*8 LOO. 

end jndfing from the disparity of force, I had my own doubts -fts to the 
issue. I need scarcely say that I was greatly excited. It was nxy first 
command : My future standing in the service depended on my conduct 
now, — and, Grod help me, I was all this while a mere lad, not more than 
twenty-one years old. A strange indescribable feeling had come over roe, 
and an irresistible desire to disburden my mind to the excellent man before 
me. i sat down. 

"Hey day," quoth Bang, as he laid down his coiiee^cup ; "why, Tom, 
what ails you ? You look deuced pale, my boy.'* v 

"Up all night, sir, and bothered all day,** said I ; "wearied enough, I 
can tell you." 

I felt a strong tremor pervade my whole frame at this moment i and I 
was impelled to speak by some unknown impulse, which I could not ac- 
count for nor analyze. 

** Mr. Bang, you are the only friend whom 1 could count on in these 
countries ; you know all about me and mine, and, I believe, would willin^y 
do a kind action to my father's son." 

"What are you at,' Tom, my dear boy? come to the point, man.** 

" I will. I am distressed beyond measure at having led jrbu and your 
excellent friends. Wagtail and Gelid, into this danger ; but I could not 
help it, and 1 have satisfied my conscience on that point ; so I have only 
to entreat that you will stay below, and not unnecessarily expose your- 
selves. And if I should fall — may I take this liberty, my dear sirj** and I 
involuntarily took his hand, — ** if I should fall, and / doubt if I shall ever 
see the stm set aj^am, as we are fearfully overmatched " 

Bang struck in — 

" Wny, if our friend be too big — why not be off then ? Pull foot, man, 
eh ? — Havana under your lee !'* 

" A thousand reasons against it, my dear sir. I am a young man and a 
young officer, my character is to mafcc'in the service — No, no, it is impos- 
sible — an older and more tried hand might have bore up, but I must fight 
it out. If any stray shot carries fne off, my dear sir, \?ill you take — " 
Mary, I would have said, but I could not pronounce her name for the soul 
of me — " will you take charge of her miniature, and say I died as I have" 
— a choking lump rose in niy throat, and 1 could not proceed for a second; 
"and will you send .my writing desk to my poor mother, there are letters 
in — " the lump grew bigger, the hot tears streamed from my eyes in" tor- 
rents. I trembled like an aspen leaf, and grasping my excellent friend's 
hand more firmly, I sunk down on my knees in a passion of tears, and 
wept like a woman, while I fervently prayed to that great God, in whose 
almighty hand I stood, that I might that day do my duty as an English 
seaman. Bang knelt by me. Presently the passion was quelled. I rose, 
and so did he. " 

"Before you, my dear sir,, I am not ashamed to have " 

" Don't mention it — my good boy — don't mention it ; neither of us, as 
the old general said, will fight a bit the worse." 

I looked at him. " Do you then mean to fight ?" ssud I. 

" To be sure i do — why not ? I have no wife — " he did not say he had 
no children — " Fight ? To be sure I do." 

"Another gun, sir," said Tailtackle, through the open skylight. Now 
all was bustle, and we hastened on deck. Our antagonist was a laige 
brig, three hundred tons at the least,'a long I9W vessel, painted black, out 
and in, and her sides round as an apple, with immensely square yards. 
She was Apparently fall of men. The sun was getting low, and she was 
coming down fast on us, on the verge of the. daS blue water of the sea- 
breeze. I could make out ten ports and nine guns of a side. I inwardly 
prayed they might not be long ones, but I was not a little stanled to-see 



TOM CSIiriSLft's LOG. S49 

t^oc^' the glass diat there were crowds of naked negroes at quarters^ and 
<»n the forecastle and poop. That she was a contraband Gutneaman, I had 
alrteady made up my mind to believe ; and that she had some fifty hands 
of a crew, 1 also considered likely ; but that her captain should have resorted 
to Btich a perilous measure, perilous to themselves as well as to us, as arm^ 
iag the captive slaves, was quite unexpected, and not a little alarming, a» 
it evinced his determination to make the most desperate resistance. 

TffiltAckle was standing beside me at this time, with his jacket oil^ hi» 
eottasff girded on his thigh, and the belt drawn very tight. AU the reat of 
the crew were armed in a similar fashion ; the small-arm meni with muskets 
in- their hands, and the rest at quarters at the guns ; while the piked were* 
cast loose from the spars rcmnd which they had been stopped, with tubs of 
tratMing, and boxes of grape, all ready ranged, and every thing clear for 
action. 

. ^ Mf. Tailtackle,*^ said I, '* you are gunner here, and should be in the 
magazine. Cast off that cutlass ; it is not your province to lead the board- 
en." 'The poor fellow blushed, having, in the excitement of the moraenty 
for^tterl that he was any thing more than captain of the Firebrand's 
maintop. 

''Mr. Timotheus," said Bang << have you one of these bodkins to spare?" 

Timothy laughed. <* Certainly, sir; but you don't mean to head the 
boarders, sir — do you?" 

'^Who knows, now since J have learned to walk on this dancing cork 
of a craft?** rejoined Aaron, with a grim smile, while he pulled offhis coat, 
braced on his cutlass, and tied a large. red' cotton shawl round his head. 
He then took otf his neckerchief and fastened it round his waist as tight as - 
be oould draw. 

'' Stranpe that all ken in peril — on the uneasiness like^" said he^ 
" should edways gird themselves as tightly as they can." 

The slaver was now within musket-shot, when he put has helm to port, 
with the view of passing under our stern. To prevent bein^ raked, we had - 
to Itiff up sharp in the wind, and fire a broadside. I noticed the white 
splinters glance from his black wales ; and once more the same sharp yeU 
rting in our ears, followed by the long melancholy howl, already described* 

'^We have pinned some of the poor blacks again," said Tailtackle, who 
still lingered on the deck ; small space for remark, for the slaver again fired 
fais broadside at us, with the same cool precision as before. 

" Down with the helm, and let her come round," said 1 ; " that will do — 
master^ run across his stem — out sweeps forward, and keep her there — 
get the other carronade over to leeward — that is it — now, blaze away 
while be is becalmed — fire, small-arm men, and take good aim." 

We were now right across his stern, with his spanker boom within ten 
yards of us ; and although he worked his two stem chasers with gteat 
determination, and poured whole Showers of mu&ketry from his riggings 
and poop, and cabin- windows, yet, from the cleverness with whioi our 
sweeps were pulled, and the accuracy with which we were kept in our 
position, right athwart his stern, our fire, both from the cannon and muS- 
ketiry, the former loaded with round and grape, was telling I oould see, 
with ffearf uV etfect. ^ . 

CTfash — " There, my lads, down goes his main-tepmast --pepper Msft 
well, while they are blinded and confusecl among the wreck. , Fire away^— 
there goes th^ peak, shot away cleverly close by the throat,' £>oif't esase- 
firing, although his flag be down — it was none of his doing. There, laf 
lads, there he has it again ; you have shot away the weamer foretopAid 
sVieet, and he cannot get from under you." 

Tvfo men at this moment lay out on his larboard foreyaid-ann, apparently 
wHhthe intcnfidti <*F splicing Uie sheet, and getting the clew of the foretop- 

46—4 



S48 I'OM crinolk's loo. 

gail once more down to the yard ; if they had succeeded in this, the vessel 
would again have fetched away, and drawn out from under our fire. Mr. 
Bang and Paul Gelid had all this time been firing with muderous precisum, 
from where they had ensconced themselves under the shelter of the larboard 
bulwark, close to the taffrail, with their three black servants in the caiiiiiy 
loading the six muskets, and little Wagtail, who was no great shot^ atting 
on the deck, handing them up and down, 

** Now, Mr. Bang," cried I, " for the love of Heaven," — and may Heaven 
forgive me for the m-placed exclamation ~ " mark these two men -:— down 
wito them ?'» 

Bang turned towards me with all the coolness in the world — ** What^ 
9tie chaps on the end of the long stick?" 

"Yes, yes,** (I here spoke of the larboard foreyard-ann,) "yea, down 
with them." 

He Ufted his piece as steadily as if he had really been duck-ahootixig. 

*« I say, Gehd, my lad, take you the innermost." 

"Ah!»» ouoth Paul. Thev fired — and down dropped bot|i .men, and 
sqnattered for a moment in trie water, like wounded waterfowl, pnd then 
sank for ever, leaving two small puddles of blood on the surface. 

" Now, master,'' snouted I, " put the helm up and lay him alongside — 
there — stand by with the grapphngs — one round the backstay — Sie other 
through the champlate there — so, — you have it" As we raneed under 
his counter — " Mainchains are your chance, men — boarders, ficmow me." 
And in the enthusiasm of the motnent I jumped into the slaver^s main 
channel, followed by twenty-eight men. We were in the act of getting 
over the netting when the enemy rallied, and fired a volley of smallarms, 
which sent four out of the twenty-eight to their account and wounded three 
more. We gained the quarte;'-deck, where the Spanish captain, and about 
forty of fais crew, showed a determined front, cutlass and pistol in hand — we 
charged them they stood their ground. Tailtackle(who, the moment he heard 
the boarders called, had jumped out of the magazine, and followed me) at a 
blow clove the Spanish captain to the chine ; the lieutenant, or second in 
command, was my bird, and I had disabled him by a sabre-cut on the sword- 
arm, when he drew his pistol, and shot me through the lefl shoidder, 1 
fdt no pain, but a sharp pinch, and then a cold sensation, as if water had 
been poured down my neck. • 

Ji^aree was close by me with a boarding-pike, and our fellows were 
fitting with all the gallantry inherent in British sailors. For a moment 
the battle was poised in equal scales. At length* our antagonists gave 
way, when about fifteen of^ the slaves, naked barbarians, who had been 
ranged with muskets in their hands on the forecastle, suddenly jumped 
down into the waist with a yell, and came to the rescue of the Spanish part 
of the crew. 

I thought we were lost. Our people, all but Tailtackle, poor Handlead, 
and Jigmaree, held back. The Spaniards rallied, and fought with renewed 
courage, and it was now, not for glory, but for dear life, as all retreat was 
cat on by the parting of the grapplings and warps, that had lashed the 
schooner alongside of the slaver, for the Wave nad by this time forged 
ahead, and lay across the brig's bows, in place of being on her Quarter, 
with her foremast jammed against the slaver*s bowsprit, whose spiritsaU* 
ysid crossed our deck between the masts. 

We could not therefore retreat to our own vessel if we had wished it, as 
the Spaniards had possession of the waist and forecastle ; all at once, 
however, a discharge of round and grape crashed through the bridleport of 
the brig, and swept off three of the black auxiliaries before mentioned, and 
wounded as manv more, and the next moment an unexpected ally appeared 
on the field. When we boarded, the Wave had been left with only Peter 




TOM CRIROIiKS LOO. ^49 

Mangrove j tb*f five dockyard negroes ; Pearl, ofne of the captain's gigs 
the handsome black already introduced on the scene ; poor little RcefpointT 
who, as already stated, was badly hurt j Aaron Bang, Paul Gehd and 
Wagtail. But this Pearl without price, at the very moment of time when 
I thoaght the game was up, jumped on deck through the bowport, cutlass 
in hand, f<rilowed by the five black carpenters and Peter Mangrove after 
whom appeared no less a personage than Aaron Ban* himself and the three 
blackamoor valets, armed with boarding-pikes. Bang flourished his cut- 
lass for an instant. 

«* Now, Pearl, my darling, shout to them in Corromantee, — shout j" and 
forthwith the black quarter-master sung out, " Corromantee, Sheik Cocoloo. 
kockemony populoram fis ;♦' which, as I afterwards learned, being interpret- 
ed, is, " Behold the Sultan Cocoloo, the great ostrich, with a feSher in his 
{tail like a palm branch ; fight for him, you sons of female dogs." In an 
instant the blade Spanish 'auxiliaries sided with Pearl, and Bang, and the 
negroes joined in charging the white Spaniards, who were speetfily driven 
down the main hatchway 
wounded, on the blood- 
fence, by firing up the hatchway. 

" Zounds," cried Jigmarce, *« there's the clink of hammers j they are 
knocking^off the fetters of the aiaves.** 

" If you let the blacks loose," 1 sung out in Spanish, " by the Heaven 
above us, I will blow you up, although 1 should go with you! Hold your 
hands, Spaniards ! Mind whaf you do, madmen ?" 
• « On With the hatches, ifteln," shoUted Tailtackle. 
They had been thrown overboard, or put out of the way ; they could no- 
where be seen. The firing from below continued. 

" Cast loose that carronade there ; clap in a canister of grape — so — now 
run it forward, and fire down the hatchway .»* . It was done, and taking 
effect among the pent-up slaves, such a yell arose — oh God ! oh God ! — 
I never can forget it. Still the maniacs continued firing up the hatchway. 
** Load and fire again." My people were now furious, and fought more 
like incarnate fiends broke loose from hell than human beings. 

•* Rtm the gun up to the hatchwajr once more."* They ran the carronade 
so fliriously forward, that the coaming, or ledge, was split off, and down 
went the gun, carriage and all, with a crash intc^ the hold. Presently smoke 
appeared rising up tne fore-hatchway. 

"They have set fire te the bri^ ; overboard ! — regain the schooner, or 
we shall all be blown into the air like peels of onions !" sung out little Jig- 
maree. 

But where was the "Wave? She had broke away, and was now a 
cable's length ahead, apparently fast leaving us, with Paul Gelid and Wag- 
tail, and poor little Reefpoint, who, badly wounded as he was, had left his 
hammock, and came on deck in the emergency, making signs of their in- 
ability to cut away the halyards, and the tiller being shot away, the schooner 
had become utterly unmanageable. - 

"Up, and let fall the foresail, men — down with the foretack — cheerily 
now — ^et way on the brig, and overhaul the Wave promptly, or we are 
lost," cried 1. It was done with all the coolness of desperate men. 1 took 
^ehelm, and presently we were once more alongside of our own vessel. 
Time we were so, for about one hundred and fifty of the slaves, whose 
shackles had been knocked off", now scrambled up the fore hatchway, and 
we had only time to jump overboard, when they made a rush aft ; and no 
doubt, exhausted as we were, they would have massacred us on the spot, 
frantic and furious, as they evidently Were, from the murderous fire of gitipe 
that had been directed down the hatchway. 



350 TOM. ciuff co^'a I'^a- 

• But the lue was quicker than they. The amovlteing •moke ^ ymm 
riffljofi like a pillar of cloud from the fore- hatchway, waa now streaked wrth 
tongues of red 0ame, which, licking the masts and spars, ran Bp and cau^t 
the sails and riggiug. In an inatant, the fire spread to every part of the 
gear aloft, while^ other element, the sea, was also strivuig for the mastery 
m the destruction of the doomed vessel ; for owr shot, or the fall pf the car- 
ronade into the hold, had stalled some of the bottom planks, and she was 
fast settlin<r down by the head. We could heai the water wah^ng iB like a 
mill sUeam. The fire increased — her guns went off as they heeame heated 
— she gave a sudden heel —and whie ive hundr4Ml human b^ngs, ^Ht «p 
in her noisome hold, split the heavens with theiir piercing deaXh-yelle, dow« 
she went with a heavy loreh,. head foremost, right in the wake of the seU 
ting sun, whose level rays made the thick^un wrealfcs that hurst Irom her 
as she disappeared ^ow wjith the hue of the amethysit ; and while th^ 
whirling clouds, gilded by his dying radiance, curled up into the blue Ay^ 
in rolling masses, growing thinner and thinner, until they vanished tfway, 
even like the wreck whereout they rose, — and the circhii^ eddies, ereated 
by her sinking, no longer sparkled and flashed in the i?ed light, — and tk» 
stilled waters where she had gone down, as if oil had been cast on theip^ 
were spread out like polished sdver, shining fike a mirror, while all aioand 
was dark blue ripple, — a puff of fat black asfuke^ densor thao a»y wo had 
yet seen, suddenly emerged with a loud gur^ng n^e, from out the deep 
bosom of the calmed sea, and rose l^ke a balloon, rowing slowly upwards, 
until it reached a little way above our mastrheads, where it nelted and 
spread out into a dark pall, that overhung the scene of death, as if the in- 
cense of such a horrible and polluted sacrifice could not ascend into the 
pure heaven, but had been agam crushed b&ck-upon our devoted hewls, as 
a palpable manifestation of £e' wrath of Him who hath aaid — " Thou ahalt 
notlpU.** , 

For a few moments all was silent as the grave, and I felt as if the air 
had become too thick for breathing, while I looked up like another Cain. 

Presently, about one hundred and fifty of the slaves, men, women, and 
children, who had been drawn down by the vortex, rose amidst numherlee^ 

f«eces of smoking wreck, to the surface of the sea ; the strongest yelliiig 
ike fiends in their despair, while the weaker^ the women, and the helpless 
gasping little ones, were cholMng, and gurgljng, and sinling all around* 
Yea, the small thin expiring cry of the innocent sucking in^t torn from 
its siaking mother's breast, as she held it for a brief moment above the 
waters, vrhich had already for ever closed over herself, was l^re. — But 
we could not perceive one single individual of her white crew ; like des- 
perate meiK they had aU gone down with the bri& We picked up abo«t 
one half of the miserable Africans, and — my pen trembles as I write it- 
fell necessity compelled us to fire on the remainder, as it was utteiiy im- 
possible for us to take t^em on board. Oh, that I could erase such a scene 
for ever from my memory ! One incident I cannot help relating. We had 
saved a woman, a handsome clear-skinped girl, of about sixteen years of 
age. She was very faint when we got her in, and was lying with her head 
over a port-sUl, when a strong athletic young negjro swam to the part ef 
the schooner where she was. She held down her hand to him ; he was in 
the act of grasping it, when he was shot through the heart from above. 
She instantly jumped overboard, andi ffl^^spiMg bjm in her arms, they sank, 
and disappeared together. " Oh, woman, whatever naay be the eMOur ef 
your skin, your heart is of one only !" said Aaron. 

Soon all was quiet ; a wounded Uack here and there was shrieking in 
his great agony, and struggling for a moment before he sank into his 
waterygrave for ever j a few pieces of wreck were floating and sparkling on 
the surface of the deep in the blood-red sunbeams, which streamed* in a 



TOH cringle's loo. 351 

flood ofgloiioas light on the bloody deck, shattered hull, and torn rigging 
of the Wave, and on the dead bodies and mangled limbs of those who 
had fikUen ; while some heavy scattering drops oi rain fell sparkling from 
a passing clond, as if Nature had wept in pity over the dismal scene ; or 
as if they had been blessed tears, shed by an angel, in his heavenward 
course, as he hovered for a moment, and looked down in pity on the fan- 
tastic tricks played by the worm of a day — by weak man, in his little 
moment of power and ferocity. I said something ~ ill and hastily. Aaron 
was close beside me, sitting on a carronade slide, while the^ surgeon was 
dressing a pike wound in his neck. He looked up solemnly in my face, 
and then pointed to the blessed luminary, that was now sinking in the sea, 
and blazing up into the resplendent heav6ns — " Ci^ingle, for shame —for 
shame — for shame — your impatience is blasphemous. Remember this 
morning — -and thank Him" — here he looked up and crossed himself — 
"thank Him who, while he has called poor Mr. Handlead, and so many 
brave fellows^ to their last awful reckohins, has mercifully brought us to 
the end of this fearful day ; — oh, thank Him, Tom, that you have seen the 
sun set once nwrei 



CHAPTER XVI. 

THB 8BC0ND CRUISE OP THE WAVE. . 

* 

*' I longed to see the lalss that gem 
Old Ocean's purple diadem. 
I sought bf turna, and saw them all" 

Bride of Abtdos. 

The puncture in Mr. Bang's neck from' the boarding-pike was not very 
deep, stiU it was an ugly lacerated wound ; and if he had not, to use his 
own phrase, been somewhat bull-necked, there is no saying what the con- 
sequences might have been. 

"Tom, my boy," said he, after the doctor was done with him, "I am 
nicely coopered now — nearly as good as new — a little stiffish or so — 
lucky to have such a comfortable coating of muscle, otherwise the carotid 
would have been in danger. So come nere, and take your turn, and I 
will hold the candle." 

It was a dead calm, and as I had desired the cabin to be again used as 
a cockpit, it was at tlus time full of poor fellows, waiting to have their 
wounds dressed, whenever the surgeon could go below. The lantern was 
brought,' and sitting down on a wadding tub, I stripped. The ball, which 
I knew had lodged in the fleshy part of my left shoulder, had first of all 
struck me right over the collar-boAe, from which it had glanced, and then 
buried itself in the muscle of the arm, just below the sun, where it stood 
oat, as if it had been a sloe both in shape and colour. The collar-bone 
was much shattered, and my chest was a good deal shaken, and greatly 
bruised ; but I had perceived nothing of aU this at the time I was shot ; 
the sole perceptible sensation was the feeling of cold water running down, 
tind the pinch in the shoulder, as already described. I was much surprised 
(every man who has been seriously hit being entitled to expatiate) with the 
extreme smallness of the puncture in the skin through which the' ball had 
entered ; you could not nave forced a pea through it, and Ibere was 
scarcely any flow of blood. 

" A very simple affair this, sir,*' said the sur^n, as he made a minute 
indunon right over the ball, the instrument cutting into the cold dull lead 
4' 



3S^ TOM GKUiaiJBV I^. 

with a eke^ mud then prefsing his fing^ra, ooft ooetich ndt of ^ U jmp^ed 
out nearly mto Aaron's mouth. 

'* A pretty sugar-plum, Tom — if that collar-bone of yours had not been 
ail the narcier, you would have been embalmed in. a gazette^ to use yoor 
own favourite expression. But, my good boy, your brqise on the chest is 
serious ; you must go to bed, and take care ofyourself." 

Alas ! there was no bed for me to go to. Tfhe cabin was occupied by 
the wounded, where the surgeon way ^till at work. Out of our small 
crewy nine had been killed, B.Sa eleven wound^, counting passengers « 
twenty out of forty-two — a fearfql proportion. 

The night had now fallen, 

"Pearl, send spme of the people aft, and get a spare square-sail from 
the sailmaker, and '' 

** Will the awnine not do, sir ?*' 

" To be sure it ww," said I — it did not occur to me. '* Get the awning 
triced up to t|ie stancheons, and tell my steward to get the beds <m deck — 
a few flags to sliut us in witt make the thing complete." 

It was done ; and while the sharp cries of the wounded, who were im- 
mediately under the knife of the doctor, and the low moans of those whose 
wounds had been dressed, or were waiting their turn, reached our ears 
distinctly through the small skylight, our beds were arranged on deck, un- 
der ttie shelter of the awning, a curtain of flags veiling our quarters from 
the gaze of the crew. Paul Gelid and Pepperpot occupied the starboaod 
side of the little vessel ; Aaron Bans ana myself the larboard. By this 
time it was close on eight oVslock in rae evenini^ I had merely looked in 
on our friends, ensconced as they were in their temporary hurric^e house ; 
for I had more work than I could accomplish on deck in repairing 
damages. Most of our standing, and great part of our running ngging, 
had been shot, aiivay, which the tired crew were busied in spacing and 
knotting the best way they could. Our mainmast was very badly wound- 
ed d^se to the deck. It was fished as sdentificidly as our drcuinstances 
adtnitted. iThe foremast had fortunately escaped -^ it was untouched ; ^ 
but there were no fewer than thirteen round shot through our hull, five of 
them between wind and water. 

When every thing had been done which ingenuity could devise, or the 
most determine d p erseverance execute, I returned to our canvass-shed alt, 
and found Mr. Wagtail sitting on the deck, arranging with the help of my 
steward, the supper equipment to the best of his ability. Our meal, as 
may easily be imagined, was frugal in the extreme — • salt beef, biscuit, 
some roasted yams, a^ cold |mg *• some of Aaron's excellent ruiiL Butl 
mi^k it down, that I questiop if any one of the four who partook of it, ever 
made so hearty a supper before, or since* We worked away at the junk 
until we had polished the bone, clean as an elephant's tusk, and thf^roasted 
yams disappeared ip bushelfuls ; while the old rum sank in the bottle, like 
mer^iiry in th^ barometer indicating an approaching gale. 

« I say, Toip," quoth Aaron, " how do you feel, my boy 7" 

" Whyj not aa buoyant as t could wish. To me it ham been a day ot. 
fearful FespQnsibility*". 

" And w.eU it may,'* said he. . **_As fo; flnyself, 1 go to rest with the tre- 
mendous cofwoiousnef s that even I» who am not a professional butcher, 
have this bless^ day shed more than one fellow-oreature's blood — a trem- 
bli|M^ considecation — and all for wha^ Tom.? You met a big ship in &e 
dtpT, and deairtd her to step^ She said she wpuld not « — You said, * You 
shall/ -*- She. ifgoined, < I'll be damned if I do.' And thereupon you set 
about compelling her ; and certainly you have interrupted her course to 
fooifl ipurpoM, at the trivial cost ci the lives of only five or mx hundred 



tOH CRiimi.s-8 LOO. 359 

Imman besAgs, whose hearts were beating cheerily in their bosoms within 
thede last six hours, but whose bodies are now food for fishes." 

I was stung. " At your hands, my dear sir, I did not expect this, 
and »> 

" Hush,'* said he* ** I don't blame you — it is all right ; but why will not 
the government at home arrange by treaty that this nefarious trade should 
be entirely put down ? Surely all our victories by sea and land might war- 
rant our stipulating for so much, in place of hugger-muggering with do^bt* 
ittl ill-defified treaties, specifying that you Johnny CrapeaUy and you Jack 
Spaniard, shall steal men, ana deal in human tLeaik, in such and such a de- 
gree of latitude onlyt while, if yod pick up one single slave a league to the 
northward or southward of the prescribed line of coast, then we shall blow 
you out of the water whenever we meet you. Why should poor devils, 
who live in, one degree of latitudCj be allowed to be ludQapped, whilst we 
make it felony to steal their immediate neighbours V* Aaron waxed warm 
as he proceeded — ** Why vnW not Englishmen lend a hand to put down 
the slave-trade amotig our opponents in sugar growing, before they so recK" 
lessly endeavour to crtush slavery in our own worn-out colonies, utterly 
disregardless of our rights and lives ? Mind, Tom, I don't defend slavery, 
I sincerely wish we could do without it, but am I to be the only one to pay 
tha piper m compassing its extinction ? If, however, it reall v be that (Jpas- 
tree,» lender whose baleful shade every kindly feeling in the human bosom, 
whether of master or servant, withers and dies, I ask, who planted it? tf 
it possess the magical, and incredible, aiid most pestilential quality, that 
the English gentleman, who shall be virtuous ana beneficent, and just in 
all his ways, before he leaves home, and qfler he returns home, shall, during 
his temporary sojourn within its influence, become a very Nero for cruelty, 
and have his warm heart of flesh smugged out of his bosom, by some hocus 
pocus, utterly unintelligible to any unprejudiced rational bein^, or indurated 
into Ae flint *of the nether millstone, or frozen into a lump of ice — " 

'* Lord i" ejaculated Wagtail, " only fancy a snowball in a man's stom- 
ach, and in Jamaica too !" 

" H0I4 your tongue, Waggy, my Ipve," continued Aaron ; " if all this 
were so, I would a^ain ask, who planted it? — say not that we did it — I 
am a planter, but I did not plant slavery. I found it growing and flourish- 
ing, and fostei^ed by the government, and made my home among the 
branches like a respectable cc^bie crato, or a pelican in a wild-duck's nest, 
with all my pretty little tender black branr^chers hopping about me, along 
with numberless other unfortunates, and now find that the tree is being up- 
rooted by the very hands that planted and nourished it, and seduced me to 
live in it, and all " 

I laughed aloud — '* Come, come, my dear sir, you are a perfect Lord 
Castlereagh in the congndty of your figures. How the deuce can any liv- 
ing tliino; exist among ttie poisonous branches of the Upas-tree — or a wild- 
duck build »» 

"Get along with your criticism, Tom— And don't laugh, hang it, don't 
laugh — but who told you that a corbie cannot ?*' 

" Why there are no corbies in Java." 

** Pah — botheration — there are pelicans then ; but you know it is not an 
Upas-tree, you know it is all a chimera, and, like the air-drawn dagger of 
Macbeth, * that there is no such thing.' Now, that is a good burst, U-elid, 
my lad, an't it ?*' said Bang, as he drew a long breath, and agidn launchisd 
forth. 

"Our government shall -Quarrel about sixpence here or sixpence there of 
discriminative duty in a foreign port, while they have clapped a knife to our 
throats, and.- a flaming fagot to our houses, by absurd edicts and fanatical 
intermeddling with our owp colonies, where the slave-trade has notoriously, 



354 tOM tJftJNOLt's LOO* 

and to their own oonTiction,.entur«lj ceased; while, 1 say it afam* tbef 
will not put out their little finger to prevent, nay, they calmly look on, and 
permit a traffic utterly repugnant to all the best feelings of our nature, and 
oaneful to an incalculable degree to our own West Indian possessions ; pn>> 
Tided, forsooth, the slaves be stolen within certain limits, which, as no one 
can prove, naturally leada to this infernal contraband, the suppression qf 
whicn — Lord, what a thing to think of! — has nearly depriv^ the world 
of the invaluable services m me, Aaron Bong, Esquire, Member of Council 
of the Island of Jamaica, and Custos Rotulorum Populomm Jig of the 
Parish of »' 

"•Lord," said Wagtail, '* why, the yam is not half done." 

" But the rum u — ah !'* drawled Gelid. 

*' Damn the yam and the rum too,'* rapped out Bang ; " why, you belly 
gods, you have interrupted such a tprrent of eloquence !". 

I began to guess that our friends were waxing peppery. " Why,^geii-< 
tlemen, I don't Know how you feel, but JamTeguTarly done up — it is quite 
calm, and 1 hope we shall all sleep, so good, night'* 

We nestled m, and the sun had risen before I was called next moimja^ 
I hope 

** I rose a sadder and a wiser man, 
Upon that morrow's mora.** 

** On deck, there,*' said I, while dressing. Mr. Peter Swop, one of the 
Firebrand's master^s-mates, and now, in consequence of poor Hand^ead's 
death, acting-master of the Wave, popped in his head through the opening 
in the flags. ** How is the weather, Mr-. Swop ?" 

** Calm all ni^ht, sir; not a breath stirring, sir." 

" Are the sails shifted ?" said I, '* and the starboard main-shrouds re- 
placed ?" 

" They are not yet, sir ; the sails are on 'deck, and the rigging is now 
stretching, and will be all ready to get over the mast-head by breakfast- 
time, sir." 

*' How is her head ?" 

" Why," rejoined Swop, " it has been boxing all round the compass, sir, 
for these last twelve hours ; at present it is north-east." 

" Have we drifted much since last ni§ht, Mr. Swop ?" 

" No, sir — much where we were, sir," rejpined the master. " There 
are several pieces of wreck, and three dead bodies floating close to, sir." 

By this time I was dressed, and had gone from under the awning on deck. 
The first thing I did was to glance my eye over the nettings, and there per- 
ceived on our quarter three dead bodies, as Mr. Swop had said, floating, 
— one a white Spaniard, and the others the corpses of two unfortunate 
Africans, who had perished miserably when the brig went down. The 
white man's remains, swollen as they were, from the heat of the climate, 
and sudden putrefaction consequent thereon, floated quietly within pistol- 
shot, motionless and still ; but the bodies of the two negroes were nearly 
hidden by the clustering sea-birds which had perched on them. , There 
were at least two dozen shipped on each carcass, busy with their beaks and 
claws, while, on the other hand, the water in the immediate neighbourhood 
seemed quite alive, from the rushing and wallopping of numberless fishes, 
who were tearing the prey piecemeal. The view was anything but pleas- 
*'**» 3.nd 1 naturally turned my eyes forward to see what was going on in 
the bows of the schooner. I was startled from the number of black faces 
which I saw. 

" Why, Mr. Tailtackle, how many of these poor creatures have we on 
board ?" *^ 

" There are fifty-nine, sir, und erhatches in the fore-hold," said Timothy, 



TOM C&IITGLS'S XOft* 255 

**a»d thirtgr-five on deck ; but I hrae we shan't have them lon^ sir. It 
looks like a breeze to windward. We shall have it before long, sir." 

Ax this moment Mr. Bang came on deck. 

" Lord, Tom, I thought iiwas a flea-bite, last night, but, mercy, I am as 
stifi*and sore as a genUeman need be. How do you feel ? I see you have 
<»e 4>f your fins in a sling — eh ?" 

** I am a little stiff, certainly • however, that wi([ go off: but come for- 
ward here, mj dear sir ; come nere, and look at this sbot-nole — saw you 
ever anything like that r ' 

This was the smashing of one of our pumps from a round shot, the splin- 
ters from which were stuck into the bottom of the launch, which overhung 
it, forming really a figure very like the letter A. 

" Dop't take Jt to myselfj Tom — no, not at all." 

At this- moment the black savages c^the forecastle discovered our fHend, 
aj»d fidioats of '* Sheik Cocoloo " rent the skies. Mr. Bang, for a moment, 
appeared startled, so far as t could judge, he had forgotten that part of his 
ex{4oit, and did not l^now what to make of it, until at last the actual 
meaning jseemed to Bash on him, when, with a shout of laughter, he bolted 
ii» though thft opening^ of the fiags'to his former quarters below the awning. 
I descended to tne cabin, breakfast having been announced, and sat down 
toouj: meal, cckofronted by Paul Gelid and Pepperpot Wagtail. Presently 
w^ beard Aaron sing out, the smfill scuttle being right overhead, ** Pegtop. 
come here, Pegtqp, Isay, help me on with my neckcloth — so— that will 
do ; now;i «h^l go oil aeck. Why, Pearl, my boy, what do you want?** 
and before Pearl could get a word in, Aa-^on continued, " I say. Pearl, go to 
the other end of the slup» and tell your ,Corroman tee friends that it is all a 
humbug — that I am not the Sultan Cocoloo ; furthermore, that I have not 
a lleather in my tail like a palm-branch, of the truth of which I offer to give 
them ocular proof.*' 

Pearl made bis salaam. "Oh, sir, I iear that we must not say too much 
on that subject ; we have not irons for one half of them savage negirs j*^ 
(he fellow was as black as a coal himself; *< and were they to be undeceiv- 
ed, why, reduced as our -crew is, they might at auy time nse on and mas- 
sacre uie whole watch." 

«*The devil !" we could hear friend Aaron say ; "oh, then, go forward, 
and assure them that I am a bi^er ostrich than ever, and I shall astonish 
tliam presently, take my word lor it Pegtop, come here, you scoundrel," 
he continued ; " I say, regtop, get me out my uniform coat,** — our friend 
was a captain of Jamaica militia — "so — and my sword — that will do — 
and here, pull off my trousers, it will be more classical to perambulate in 
my [^irt, in case it really be necessary to persuade them that the palm 
branch was" all a figure of speech. Now, n^y hat — there — walk before 
me, and fan me with the top of that herring barrel." 

This was a lid of one of the wadding-tubs, which, to come up to Jigma- 
ree^s notions of neatness, had been fitted with covers, and forth stumped 
Bang, preceded by Pegtop doing the honours. But the instant he appeared 
from beneath the flags, the same wild shout arose from the captive slaves 
forward, and such of them as were not fettered, immediately began to bun- 
dle and tumble round our friend, rubbing their flat noses and woolly heads 
all over him, and taking hold of the hem of his garment, whereby his per- 
sonal decency.was so spriously perilled, that, after an unavailing attempt to 
shake them off, be fairly bolted, and ran for shelter, once more, under the 
awning, amidst the suppressed mirth of the whole crew, Aaron himself 
laughing louder than any of them all the while. " I say, Tom, and fellow- 
9uf!erors," quoth he, aller he had run to earth under the awning, and look- 
ing down the scuttle into the cabin where we were at breakfast," how am 
I to get into the cabin ? if I go out on the quarter-deck but otic arm- s 



35^ TOM crikgle'jb Locr. 

length, in order fo reach the companion, these barbarians will be at me 
again. Ah, I see — " 

Whereupon, without more ado, he stuck his legs down through tbe small 
hatch right over the breakfast table, with .the intention of descending, and 
the first thing he accomplished, was to pop his foot into a large dish of 
scalding hominy, or hasty-pudding, made of Indian corn meal, with which 
Wagtail was in the habii of commencing his stowage at breakfast. But 
this proving too hot for comfort, he instantly drew it out, and in his attempt 
to r^ascend^ he stuck his bespattered toe into Paul Gelid*s mouths " Oh [** 
oh !^'' exclaimed Paul, while little Wagtail lay back laughing like to die ; 
but the next instant Bapg gave over another 'struggle, or wallop, like B.pel- 
hch in shoal-water, wheseby Pepperpot borroweaa good kick on the side 
of the head, and down came the Great Ostrich, Aaron Bang, but without 
any feather in his tail, as I can avouch, slap upon the table, smashing cups, 
and saucers, and hominy, and d6Yi\ knows what all, to pieces, as he doua- 
dered on the board. This was so absurd, that we were all obliged to give 
uncontrolled course to our mirth for a minute or two, when making the best 
of the wreck, we codtrived to breakfast in tolerable comfort. 

Soon afler the meal was finishJBd, a light air enabled us once more to lie 
our course, and we gradually crept to the northward!, until twelve o*dock 
in the forenoon, after which time it fell cakn again. I went down' to the 
cabin ; Bang had been overhauling my small Hbrary, when a shelf gave 
way (the whole affair having been injured by a round shot iti the action, 
which had torn right through the cabin,) so down came several scroJls, 
rolled up, and covered with brown paper. 

** What are all these ?" I could hear our faend say. 
" They are my logs,** said 1. 
"Your what ?»' 
" My private journals.'' 

" Oh, I see," said Aaron. "I will have a turn at them, with your per- 
mission. But what is this so carefully bound with red tape, and seaW, 
and marked — r let me see, * Thomas Cringle, his log-book.' " 

He looked at me. — " Why, my dear sir, to say tSe truth, that is my first 
attempt ; full of trash, believe me ; — what else could you expect from sd 
mere a lad as I w^s when I wrote it ?" 

" ' The child is father to the man,' Tom, my boy ; so may I peruse it; 
mav I read it for the edification of my learned allies, Pepperpot Wagtail, 
and Paul Gelid, esquires?" 

« Certainly,'* I replied, <* no objection in the world, but you will laugh at 
me, I know; still, do as you please, only had you not better have your 
wound dressed first ?" ^ 

"My wound ! Poo, poo ! just enough to swear by — a flea-bite — never 
mind it ; so here goes " — and he read aloud what is detailed in the 
" Launching of the Log,*' making his remarks wifli so much naxoeti, that I 
dare say the reader will be glad to hear a few of them. His anxiety, for 
instance, when he read of the young atd-de-camp being shot and dragged 
by the stirrup,* to know " what became of the empty horse," was Very en- 
tertaining ; and when he had read the description of Davoust^s face and 
person, where I describe his nose "as neither fine nor dumpy — a fair 
enough proboscis as noses go,*' — he laid down the Log with the most 
laughable seriousness. . • 

•« Now," quoth he, " very inexplicit all this, Tom. Why, I am most cu- 
nous in noses. 1 judge of character altogether from the nose. I never lost 
sight of a man'^B snout, albeit I never saw the tip of my own. You may 
rely on it, that it is all a mistake to consider the regular Roman nose, with 
a curve like a shoemaker's paring knife, or the straight Grecian, with » 



TOM CRIKCHUS'S LOG. 257 

tkm transpftrent ridge, that yon can see tbiougb, or the DeutschmcmcAouni, 
or the Saxon pump-nandle, or the Scotch muUf or any other nose, that can 
betaken hold eft as the standard gnomon. No^ no ; 1 never saw a man 
with a large nose who was not a hlockheadr-eh ! Gelid, my love ? The 
pimple for me — the regular pimple — But all<ms.'* — And where, having 
introduced the German refugees to Captain Deadeye, I go on to say that I 
thereupon dived into the midshipmen's berth for a morsel of comfort, and 
was soon *' far into the.secrets of a pork pie."* — he lay back« and exclaimed 
with a long drawling emphasis — "A pork pie !'? 

" A pork, pie !" said Paul Gelid. 

" Why^ do you know," said Mr. Wagtail — "I — why, I never in all my 
it/esaw a poik-^ie." 

.'* My dem* Pepperpot^V chimed m Gelid, << we both forget Don't you 
remembecthe day we dined with the admtr^ at the pen, in July last?" 

'J Not,'* said Wagtail, " 1 totally forget it»" Bang, I saw was all this 
while chuckliagto himself — <' I absolutely forget it altogether." 

*' Bless me," said Gelki, '< don't you remember the beautiful caiipever 
wchadthatiJay?" 

*' Really I do not," s^d Pepperpot, ** I have had so many good feeds 
there.'* • 

** Why," continued.Gelid, " Lord love you, Wagtail, not remember that 
caUpever, so crisp in the bhuling ?" 

" No," said Wagjtail, " really I do riot." 

" Lord, man, it had a pudding in its belly,^^ 

*^ Oh, noto I remember," said Wagtail. 

Bang laughed outright, and I could not help making a hole in my manners 
9lao\ even prepared as I was for my jest by my sable crony Pegtop. ~ To 
proceed. 

Aaron looked at me with one of his quizzical grins ; *< Cringle, my dar- 
ling, do yotr keep these Lo^s still ?" 

" I do, my dear sir, invariably." 

"What," struck in little Wagtail, ."the deuce! — for instance shall I, 
and Paul, and Aaron there, all be embalmed or preserved " ('' Say pickled," 
quoth the latter) *' in these said Logs of yours ?" This was too absurd, 
and I ooidd not answer my allies for laughing. As for Gelid, he had been 
swayii^ himself backwards and forwards, 4ialf asleep, on the huid legs of 
his chair all this while, puffing away at a cigar. 

" Ahl" said he, half asleep, andjbut partly overhearing what was going 
on; "ah, Tom, my dear, you don't say that we shall all be handed •down 
to otfr poster— " a long yawn — "to our poster — " another yawn — when 
Ban*, watching lus opnortuaity as he sat opposite, gently touched one of 
the fore legs of the balanced ^ chair with his toe, while he finished Gelid's 
sentence by idterjecting» ^ tors," as the conoh fell back and floundered over 
on his stem ; Ms tormentor drawUns out in wicked mimicry — 

" Yes, dear Gelid, so 'Sure as you nave been landed down on your poste- 
nors now — ah — you shaU.be jbandpd down to your posterity hereafter, by 
that pestilent little scamp Cringle. Ah, Tom, / know you. — Paul, Paul, 
it will be jmdo po»t ^Uurum with you, my lad." 

Here we were interrupted by my steward's entering with his tallow face. 
" Dinner on the table, sir." We adjourned accordingly. 

After dinner we earned on very much as usual, although the events of 
the previous day had their natural 4f&ct ; there was litUe mirth, and no 
loud laughter. Once more we all turned in, the calm still continuing — 
the next morning after breakfast, friend Aaron took to the Log again. 

But the most amtisiag exhibition took place when he came to the de- 
scription of the fi>w in U^dark. stair at the agent's house, where the negroes 

* Faf o 8S. . 



S56 »0M cRiiroLA's too. 

fight for Htud scraps, and capmie Treenail, a^velfy and tbebrawa Uidjr,^do«ik 
the steps.* 

** Way, I say, Tom,** again qao<ii Aanm, " I never knew before that 
yoa were in Jamaica at ttie period you here "write of." 

*' Why, my dear shr, 1 scarcely can say that I was there, my visit was 
BO htrrried." 

** Hurried !*' rejoined he, "^ harried — by no means ; were yoa net on the 
island for four or fiye hoars ? Ah, long enough to have aothorised yoor 
writing an anti-slavery pamphlet of one hundred and iifty pages.^* « 

I smiled. 

** Oh, you may laugh, my boy, but it is tni^ — what a subject for an anti- 
slavery lecture — listen and be instructed.^* Here our finend shook hii»- 
self as a bruiser does to ascertiuo that all is right before he throws up las 
guard, and for the first five minntes he only jerked< hta right sfaonlder this 
wa^ and his left shoulder t'other way, wbilb his fins .waliopped dpwn 
against his sides like empf^ sleeves ; at length, as be warmad, ne stretdiad 
fwth his arms like Samt Imul in tlie Cartoon — ^ and altfaough'he now and 
then could not help sticking his tongue in his cheek, still, the ezbibition 
was so true and so exquisitely comical, that I never shall forget it^~ *■< The 
whole white inhabitants of Kingston are luxurious monsters, living in more 
than eastern splendour ; and weir universal practice, during their magni- 
ficent repasts, is to entertain themselves, bv oom^Utng their black servants 
to belabour each other across the pate with silver ladles, and to stick drum- 
sticks of turkeys down each other's throats. Mercitui heaven! — only 
picture the miserable slaves, each wfth the spaul of a turkey sticking in his 
sob ; dwell upon that, my dearly beloved hearers, dwell upon that — and 
then let those who have the atrocious hardihood to do so, speak of the kind- 
liness of the planters' hearts. Kindliness ! kindliness, to cram the leg <^a 
turkey down a man's throat, while his yoke-lisllow in bondaee ia fractoting 
his tender woolly skull — for ail negroes, as is well known, have craniums^ 
much thinner and more fragile than an egg-shell — wkh so trpmendbiis a 
weapon as a silver ladle 7 Ay, a silver ladle ! ! ! Some people make light 
of a silver ladle as an instrument of punishment — it is spoken of as a very 
slight affiiir, and that the blows inflicted by it are mere child's-play. If aay 
ofyou, my beloved hearers, labour under this delusion, and will allow bm^ 
for your edification, to hamme^ou about the chops with one of the afenv 
said silver soup-ladles of those yellow tyrants, for one little half hour, I 
pledge myself the delusion shall be dispelled once and for ever. Well 
then, after this fearful scene has continued for, I dare not say how long >^ 
the black butler — ay, the black butler, a'slave himself— eh, my fritods, 
even the black butlers are slaves — the very men Who minnter the wine-in 
health which maketh their hearts glad, and the castor oil in sickness, which 
maketh them any thing but of a cheerful countenonee— <&e veiy black 
butler is desired, on peril of having a drumstick stuck into his own gizoaid 
also, and his skuU fractured by the aforesaid iron ladles—- red hot, it may 
be — ay, and who shall say they are not full of molUn lead 7 yes, molt^ 
lead — does not our reverend brother Lachrymie Roavem say that the ladles 
might have been full of molten lead, and what evidence have we on the 
other side, that they were not fuU of molten lead ? Why, none at all, none 
— nothing but the oaths of all the liaval arid military offilcRBrs who have ever 
served in these pestilent settlements ; .andof all the>pUateiB and merchants 
in the West Indies, the interested planters -> those plantens who suborn all 
the navy and army to a man — those planters whose molasses » but another 
name for human blood. (Bere a large puff and blow, and a swabificatioD 
of the white handkerchief, wlule the congrega^on blow a flonriab of the 
trumpets.) My friends — (another poff) — my friandv-*^ we all know, nqr 

* PafsSK. 



TOM CRIK4»I4'S LOO. ^99 

fiiends, that Mlocks' blood is fargety used in the »iigaT refineries in Eno-- 
land, bat alas ! there is no bullocks* blood used in the refineries in tSe 
West Indies. This I will prove to you on the oath of six dissenting der- 
gymen. !No. What the^i is the inference ? Oh, isit notpalpablel Do 
you not every day^. as jurors, hang men on circumstanfial evidence ? Are 
not many of yourgielves hanged and transported every yea^, on the simple 
fact being proved, of your bein^ found stooping down in pity over some 
poor fellow with a brol^en head, with youp hands in his breeches pocket in 
order to help him np?. And can t/ou fail to. draw die proper inference in 
the present case? Oh, no! no! my friends,' « is the blood of the negro$s 
that is psed in these -refining pandemoniums -> of the poor negroes, who 
tLte worth one hundred pounds a-pieoe t6 their masters, and on whose healtii 
and capacity for Work these s«me plantew absolately and entt^dy depend." 

Here oqr friend gathered all his energies, and began to roar like a per- 
fect bull of Bashan, and to swing his arms about hke the sails of a wmd. 
mill, sLi^d to staAip and jump, and lollop about with his body as he went on. 

"Well, tj^is bmler, this poor black butler — this poor black slave butler 
.-^this poor black Christian slave butler — for he may have been a Chris- 
fian, apd most fikely was a Christian,' and indeed must have been a Chris- 
tian—is enforced, ^fter all the cruelties already related, on-'pain of being 
chofked with tbe leg of^ a* turkey himself, and having molten lead poured 
down his own throat, to do what 1 —who would not weep f — to — to — t«r 
chuck each of his- fellow-servants; poor miserable cssatures ! eaeh with a 
bone in his throat; and molten lead in his belly, and a fractured skull — to 
chuck them, neok and croup, one after another, down a dark staircase, 
a pitch-d&rk. staircase, amidst a chaos of plates and dishes, and the hardest 
Midmost expensive china, 'and the finest cut crystal — that the wounds 
inflicted may be the keener — and silver spodns, and knives and forks. 
Yea, my Christian brethren, carving-knives and pitchforks right down on 
the top of their brown mistresses, who are thereby invartabiy braised like 
the clown in the pantomime — at least as I am told he is, for /never go to 
such prbfane places — oh, no ! — bruised as flat as pancakes, and generally 
murdered outright on the spot Last of all the landlord gets up, and kickri 
the miserable butler himself down after his mates, into the very heart of 
the living mass ; and tWs not once and away, bat every day in the week, 
Sundays not excepted. Oh, my dear, dear hearers, can you— can you, 
with your fleshy hearts thumping and bumping against your small ribs, 
forget the black butler, and the mulatto concubines, and tl^e pitehforks, and 
the iron ladles full of molten lead ? My feelings overpower me, I must 
conclude. Go in peace, and ponder these things in your hearts, and pay 
your sixpences at the doors. — Exeunt omnes, piping their eyes and blowing 
their noses." 

Oar shouts of laa^ter interrupted oar friend, who never moved a mus- 
cle. • 

Again, where old Crowfoot asks Ws steward — "How does the priva- 
tecr%^'* ■ \ • - 

" There again now," said Aaron, with an irritable g^m, — " why, Tom, 
your style is most pestilent — you lay here and you toy there —are you sore 
that you are not a hen, Tom?"' 

. One more touch at Massa Aaron, and I have done. 'After coming to the 
description of the horrible carnage that the fire from the Transport caused 
on the privateer's deck before she sheered off, 1 1 remarked,— "I never 
recall that early and dismal scene to my recollection, — the awful havoc 
created on the schooner's deck by our fire, the stroggliAg, and crawling, 
and wriggling of the dark mass of wounded men, as* they endeavoufed, 
fn]itle88ly,to shelter themselves from our gans, even behind the- dead bodies 

* Page 44. t Flige 4& 

46—6 



900 TOM CUVCOLB's LO0» 



of their .slain whifnivitfiB — widKxit Gotgonng up a very feaifuL and haooir* 
ingimage^ 

''Were you ever at Big^eswade, my dear air 7'' 

'' To be sure 1 have,'* said Mr. Ban^ 

*< Then did you ever see an eeUpot, with the i^ater drawn off, when the 
snake-like fish were twining and twisting, and crawling, like Brobdi^nag 
maggots, in living, knots, a horrible and disgusting mass of hying abomina- 
tion, amidst the mthy sUnii& at the bottom ?** 

" Ach — have done, 'Tom.— bans your similes. €an*t you cut your coat 
by me, man ? Only observe the deUcacy of mine." ' 

« The corby craw for instance," said I, lau^^g. 

^ Ever at Biggleswade !;* struck in Paul GreUdl '< Ever at Big^edwade-l 
Lord love y^so. Cringle', we have all been at Biggleswade. jDont you 
know,'* (how he oonceived I should have known, I am sure I never cotdd 
tflUy) *^ don't you know that Waj^il and i once made a voyage to England, 
ay, in the hurricane months, too — sih^^ for the express purpose of eating, 
eehi there,?— and Lord, Tom,,my dear iellow,'* (here he sunk his voice into 
a most dolorous key,) *' let me tell you that we were caught in a hurricane 
in the Gulf^ and very nearly lost, when, instead of eating eels, sharks would 
have eaten us -c- ah— > and at length driven into Havana — ah. And w^en 
we did get home-*-** — (here 1 thought my excellent Mend would have 
cried oatrigbt) — " Lcord, sir ! wo found that the fpU was not the season to 
eat eels in after all— ,ah — that is in pei^ec^n, B^t we found out from 
Whiffle, whom we met in town, and who had learned it from the guard 
of the North mail, that one of the last season's pQts was still on hand at 
Biggleswade ; so down we trundled in the mail that very evening.^.' ' ^ 

" And don't you remember the awful c(4d I caught that night, being 
ob%^ to go outside ?'* qUoth Wa^gy. 

■ ** Ah, and so jr-o^ did, my dear £uow," continued his ally* 

** But gracious— on alighting, we found that the agent of a confounded 
gprmandi^g Lord Mayor had that very evenin^g boned the entire content^ 
af the only remaining pot, for a cursed liverv dmner — ^^ah. Eels, indeed! 
ve' got none but those of. the new catch, full of mud, ^nd tastins of mud 
sikI red worms. Wagtail was really verjr ill in consequence* — an." 

Pepperpot had all this while listened with^nute attention, as if the nar* 
rative bad been most moving, and I question not he thought so ; but Bang 
—oh, the fogtte! — looked also very grave and sympathizing^ but there 
was a laugbmg devil in his eye, that showed he was inwardly enjoying the 
beaati(Vilrt«e.of.hi8 friends* • 

■ We were here interrupted by a hail from the' lookf>out man at the mast- 
htadv -^ <« Laud right ahead.'! 

« What does it look Uke ?" said I. 

*4t mahes in- low haimnioekSy sir. Now I see bouses on ,the highest 
one." « 

** Humabr Nassau, New Providence, ho !" 

Shortly after we made the land about Nassau, the breeze died away, and 
it fell nearly <!»lnu 

' <<I say, Tho0)as," quoth Aaran> ** for this night at least we must still he 
your guests, and lumber jrou on board of your seventy.-four. No chance, 
8» fiir as I MC) of getting into port to-night ; at least if we do, it will be too 
lite togo on shore.". . r . 

He said truly, and we therefore made up our minds to sit down once 
mose to our lough and round dinner, in the small, hot, choky cabin of the 
Wave* As it happened, we were all in high glee. I flattered mysdf that 
ray conduct in the late affiur would hoist me up a step ortwo on the roster 
fev promotion^ ai4 my eaceUent firi^nds were neligbted at the idea of get- 
ting on shore. 



TDK CSnOidifB UHU M. 

-After iSke dotb hail iMen dr^mi, Mr. Bang openBd lii* Ara. 
** Tom, my lioy} I respeet ^onr service, but I have po gveat embilion to 
belong to it. i am iure no bnbe that I am a waro of oouU ever l«»pt me .to 
make « my home upon the deep,' — aad I really am ndt sure that it » * yety 
gentlemanly calling after &11 — Na^, don't look eliBi;*-what I meant 
waa, the egregious weariness of spint yoa must aU uaderso from oonsoxt^ 
ing with the same men day afUr day, heanng the same jiiEee repeated for 
the hundredth time, and, whichever way you turoy seeing the sMae iaoaa 
morning, noon, and night, and listeniag to' the same voices. Oh ! I ahoold 
die in a yeai'e tiite were I to become a sailor.** 

<< Bat,** re9eine4 1, << vou have your lan^ bores in the same ir^ that we 
have our sea bores ; and we have this advantage over you> that if the^devQ 
sfaonld stand at the door we can always escape from them sooner or 
later, and can buoy up our souls with t&e oeitainty Ibat we can eo escape 
from them at the end of the cruise aj the ^rthest ; -whereas if you Jiappen to 
have taken root amidst acolony of bores on shote, y^ you never can ee- 
eape, unless you sacri6ce all your temporalitics«for that purpoM ; ergo, my 
deaf air, our life has its advantages, mid youmbas its disadvantages.*' 

^** Too true — ^^ too true,*' rejoined Mr. £nng. ** In fact, jkidgidg ^m my 
own-smatt e:q[>erienos, ^mim is fost attaining a bead it never reached be* 
lore. Speechifying is the crying and piorainent Wee of theaoa. Why will 
the ganders net veccdiest that efcquenee is the gift ef heaven, Thomas ? A 
nian may inl^rove it umjuestionably, but the Promethean Are, the deelsi* 
eal spark, must her from on .high. No mental perseverance .or education 
eould ever have made a Demosthenes, or a Cicero, in the ages long past-; 
ner an Edmund Buike — — "^ 
" KoT an Aaron Bang in times present,** said vl. 

" Hide my roseate blushes, Thoinas,** quoth Aaron, asiie continued -« 
** Would that men would speak according to their gifts, study Shakspeaie 
and Don Ctuixote, and learn' ef me ; and that the real bkMnbead would 
content himself with speaking when he is spoken to, dnnkiog when he is 
drunken to, and gan^g to the kiik when the bell r|ngs. You never can 
goint<ra party 'nowadays, that you dont meet with seme shallow, prosing^ 
pestilent ass- of a fellow, who thmks that empty sound is eonvenation ; ai£l 
not unfrequently there is a spice of malignity in the blodrhead^ compost* 
tion ; hut a ereatoro of this caliber you can wither, for it is not worthcnish- 
ing, by withholding the supshinei^yourcoantenaiieefrom it, or by leaving 
it to drivel on, until the utter contempt of the whole oom(B.ay.cuip8 — to 
ehan^ the figure — a wet night*cap as an eztmguisheron it, and its small 
stinking flame t^tken and goes out of itself. Then them is your senti- 
mental water-fly, vrho blows in the lugs of the woomu, and' clips the KingMi 
Gnglish, and year highflying denunie body, who whuinles them outright 1 
•peak in a figuro. But aU tmse are as dust in .the balance to the wearisome 
man of ponderous acquirements, the solemn blockhead who usurps the pai, 
and if he happen to be rich, fancies himself entitled to ' prose and palaver 
Away, asrif he wero Sir Oiaclie, or as if the pence in his pvne cOiud ever 
fVuctify the could parritch in his pate into pre^ant brain. There is a plate- 
fol of P*(( for you at any ratie, Tom. Beautiful) eiempiifloalion of the art 
•Ihteretive — > an't it ? 

* Oh that Heaven the gift would gie us, 
To see ourselves as othens seems !* 

My dear boy, speechifying has extinguished conversation. Peblic meetings) 
(9ed knows, are rife enough, and why will the numskulls* not confine their 
infernal dulness to them ? why not be satisfied with splitting the ears of the 
groondlinss there? why will they net consider that convivial conversation 
■hoidd beUvely as the spaikie of mttsketiy, brtthaat, aharp, and tpnghi]^. 



9nS> VMC ouwaLu' loo. 

mnd not Hke tiMlhandering of bwTy canmm, or heavier hombs. •^But so— 
you fehall ask one of the Drawleys across the table to take. wine. ' Ah,' 
Mwshe — and hovr he makes out the concatenation, Grod only knows — 
* dnis pats me in mind, Mr. Thingumbob, of what happened when I was 
chairman of-thecoonty club, on such a day. Alarming times these were, 
and deucedJy nervous I was when I got up to return thanks. My friends, 

said I, this finezpeoted and roost ualookea>for honour — this ' Here, 

blawing all your breeding to the.winds, you fire a question across bis bows 
into the fat pleasant fellow, who speaks for^society beyond him, and expect 
to find that the dull sailor has hauled his wind, or dropped astern — (do 
yoa twig how nautica^I have bec<;[me.in my lingo under Tailtackle*s tuition, 
Tom?) — but, alas ! no sooner has the ^parUe of our fat friend's wit lit 
up the whole wondiipful society, than at the first lull down comes Draw- 
le^ again upon you, like a beavy-stemed Dutch dogger, right before the 
wind -^< Asl was saying -^this unei^pectsd and most unlooked-for honour,* 
— and there you are pinned to the stake, and compelled to stand«the fire o^ 
all his blunt bird-bolts for half an hour on end. At length his mud has all 
dribbled from him, and you hug yourself — ' Ah, < — come, here is a talking 
man openmg his fire, so we shall have some conversatiqn at last.' But 
alas and alack a day ! Pro$ey the second chimes in, and works away, 
and hems and haws, and hawks up some old scraps of schoolboy Jliatui 
and Greek, which are all Hebrew to you, honest man, until at length be 
finishes off by some solemn twaddle about fossil turnips^ and vitrified brick- 
bats ; and thus concludes Fozy No. S. Oh, shade of Edie Ochiltree ! that 
we should stand in the taunt oi such unmerciful spendthrifts of our time 
on earth ! Besides, the devil of it is, that whatever may be said of the flip- 
pant palmerers, the heavy, bores are generaltv most excellent and amiable 
men, so that one can't abuse the nmipha with any thing like a quiet con- 
scienoe." ' . 

<< Come," said I, " my dear sir, you are growing satirical." 

'' Cluarter less three," sung out the leadsman in the chains. 

We were now running in past the end pf Hog Island to the port of Nas- 
sau, where the lights were sparkling brightly. «W e* anchored, but it was too 
late to ^ on shore tiiat evening, so, after a partmg glass of swizzle, we all 
turned m for the ni^it 

To be near the wharf, for the convenience of refitting, I had run the 
schooner close in, being awajs of the complete security of the harbour, 
so that in the night I icould feel the little vessel gently take the ground. 
This awoke me and several of the crew, for accustomed as sailors are to 
the smooth bounding motion of a buoyant vessel, rising and falUn^ on the 
heaving bosom of the ocean, the least touch on the boI^ ground, or against 
any hard floating substance, thrills to their hearts with electrical quick-' 
ness. Through Sie thin bulkhead I could hear the officers speakingly each 
other. 

** We are touching the ground,^' said one. 

*< And if we be, there is no sea here — all smooth —land-locked entirely," 
quoth another. 

So all bands of us, except the jnratch on deck, snoozed away Once more 
into the land of. deep forgetfulness. .We had all for some days previously 
been over- worked, and. over-fatigued ; indeed, ever since the action had 
caused the duty of the little vessel to devolve on one-half of her original 
crew, those who had escaped had been subjected to great privations, and 
were nearly worn out. 

It might have Been four bells in the middle watch, when I was awakened 
by the dUeontwMtanee of Mr. Swop's heavy step overhead ;. but judging 
that the poor fellow might have toppled over into a slight temporary snooze, 
{ thougbt Uttle of it, persuaded as I was that the vessel was lying in the 



vox muveui's M«. 98$ 

ttflflt pAfed Mifetj. In fhis belief I was falling over once' ia<ne, when I 
heard a short etutted ^riuti from one of the men in the steerage— then Hb 
sttddeB sharp eiftclamation from another -*-.a louder ^aculation of surpiifle 
ffsn a third -^ and preaefttly Mr. Wagtail, who was. sleeping on a mattrq^a 
spread on the locker bdbw me, gave a splattering cough. A heavy splash 
followed, andf aimultaneously, several of the men shouted out, *' Ship lull c^ 
wat^ — water up to our hammocicB ;'' while Waggy, whof had roU^ of his 
narrow oouch, sung out -at the -top of his pipe, ^* I am drowned, Baq^ 
Tom Ctin^, my dear ~-t Gelid, I am drowned — we are all disowned — 
tfae^ shio is at ihn- bottom of the sea, and we shall have eels onom^ here,,if 
we had none at Biggleswade. Oh ! murder ! murder !" 

" Somid the weU," I toold hear Tailtackle, who had run on deek, sing 
out 

^ Nd use in tiaat,'* I called out, as I sptaehoilottt of my warm oot^^up^to 
my knees in water. . ** Brins a lig^ Mr. Tailtackle ; a bottom plank matHi 
have started', or "ai butt, or a hidden-end. >.Th6 schooner is fidl of water b»« 
yond doubt, and «s the, tide i» still making, stand by to hoist out the boat% 
and get the pounded into them. But doa*t be alanned, men ; the schooner 
is on the. groimd, . and it is near high water. So be cool and quiet Pon% 
bother ndw»— don^t -» ^' 

^* By the time I had finished mV extempcwe speech I was op deck, wheffe 
I soon found that, in vory truth, there' was no use in sounding the well, or 
mamitng the pumps either, as some woqnded plank had been crushed out 
hodily by the pressure of me vessel when she took the ground ; and th^m 
she lay -<.- the tidy little Wave — regularly bilged, with the tide flowing 
iii|j»her. 

Efrery one of the crew was now on the alert Bedding and bags and 
some provisions were placed in the boats of the schooner; and several craft 
firom the shore, hearing the alarm, were now alongside ; so danger thero 
was none, except that of catching cold, and I thereibro bethoumit me ef 
looking in on m^ guests in the cabin, i descended and waded into our 
late dormftory with a candle in my, hand, and the wa,teT nearly up to mf 
waist I there ibuad my steward, also with a light, splashing aboipt in tM 
water, catching a stray hat here, and fishing up a spare coat there, and 
anchoring^ chair, with a- piece of spunyarn, to the pillar of the small side- 
berth on tne starboard side, while our fnend Massa Aaron was coolly Ipo^ 
in his cot on the larboard, tbe bottom of which was by this time withm an 
inch of the surface of t^ water, and'bestirring himself in an attempt to. gfit 
his trousers on, which by some lucky chance he had stowed away under 
his pi]\^w overnight, and tiiere he was sticking ^p first one peg and then 
another, until by sidUng and shifting in his narrow lair, he contrived to rig 
himself in his. nether garment **But, steward, my good man,*' he wsfli 
saying when I entered, ** where is my coat, eh ?" Tto n^ greped for a 
moment down in the water, which his nose dipped into« with his start- 
sleeves tacked up to bis arm-ppts,, and then held up some.darl^ olnect, that, 
to me at least, looked like a piece of black cloth hooked put of a dyer's vat 
Alas ! this ^as Massa Aaron's coat ; and while the hats were bobbiilg nt 
each other in the other comer Uke seventy-fours, with a squadron of sAoes 
in their wake^, and Wagtail was sitting 4n the side-berth with his w^ 
ni^t-gown drawn about him, his muscular developmep^t in high jefi^ 
tittoagh the clinging drapery, and bemoaning his fate in the most pathetic 
manner that can be conceived, bur ally Aaron exclaimed, ** 1 say, Tom, how 
do you like the cut of my Sunday tout, eh ?" while our friend Paul Ge^ 
who it seems bad slept tfarou^ the whole row, was at len^h stwlle^ wit 
of hts sleep, and sticking one of his long shanks over jtfae .s)de of h^ ^t in 
act to descend, iipmersed it in the oeM saltbiine. * 

«' Lord ! Wagtail," he exclaimed, " my dear fellow, the **bin is full of 

6* 



964 torn cftiir«ni*8 lo«. 

water — we we iinkmg— ah ! Deucedty annoying to be dfowneft in tt» 
hole, amidst dirty water, like atabful ofitl-waelied {wtatoes — ah!" 

"Tom — Tom Oiri|le,'» shouted Mr. Bang, at this jidicture, while he 
looked over the edge othis cot on the WramiwA lielow, ** saw ever ajoy man 
the like of that ? Why, see there — there, just under your candle, Tom — 
a bird's nest floatins about with a mavh in it; as I am a gentleman." 

** Damn your bircPs nest and mavis too, whatever that may be," roared 
little Mr. Pepperpot " By Jupiter, it is my wig, with a live rat in it" 

*« Confound vow wig ! — ah/> quoth Paul, a^ the steward fished up what 
I took at first for a pair of brimfutl water-stoups. « Zounds ! lodL at niy 
boots." < 

** And emf&und both the wig and boots, say I," sunfg out Mr. Bang. 
" Look at my Sunday coat Why, who set the ship on^«, Tom ?" 

Here his eye caugnt mine, and a few words sufficed to explain how we 
were situated, and then the only bother was how to get ashore, and where 
we were to soioum, so as to hav# our clothes dried, as nofhins could now 
be done until daylight I therefore got our friends safely into a Nassau boat 
alongside, with their wet trunks andportmanteaos in charge cf their bladi 
servants, and left them to fiiQi their way tp^ir lodging house as th^ best 
could. By this, the wounded and the sound part of the crew had been; 
placed on board (>f two merdiant brigs,' that lay close to us ; apd &e mas- 
ters of them proving accommodating men, I got them alongside, ai the tide 
flowed, one ofi the starboard, the other on tlie larboard side, right /over the 
Wave ; and next forenoon. When they took the ground, -we rigged two 
spare topmasts from one vessel to another, and maiing the Man and fore- 
ngging of the schooner fast to them, as the tide once more maae, we weigh- 
ed her, and floated her alongside of the sheer-hulk, against winch we were 
enabled to heave her out, so as to get at the leak, and then by n^ins 
biige pumps, we contrived to free her and keep her dry. The damaged 

Slank was soon i^moved ; and, being in a fair way to surmouQjt all my 
ifficulties, about half- past five in the evening I equipped myself in dry 
clothes and proceeded on shore to call on our iriends at their, new domidL 
When I entered, I was show^ into the dining-hall by my ally, Pegtop. 

" Massa will be here presently, sir.'* -' 

«« Oh — tell him he need not hurry himself: — Bat hoW are Mr. Bang and 
his friends?" ' 

** Oh, deto all wery so so, only Massa Wagtail hah take soch a terrible 
oold, dat him tink he is going to dead ; him wery sorry for himahef, for 
true, massa." . " 

" But where are the gentlemen, Pegtop ?" ^ 

"All, 'every ofte on dem, i^ in him bed. Wet clothes have been dryins 
all day." J "s 

•* And when do they mean to dine ?" 

^^6 Pegtop doubled himself up and laughed like to sptit himself. 

^ Dem is all dining in" bed, Massa, ShjiH I show you to dem ?" 

!»' ^^^* ^® obliged ; but don't let me intrude. Give my oomplimenta, 
and say I have looke^ in simply to inquire after their health." , 

Here Mr. Wagtail shouted from the innfer apartment, ** Hilio I Tom, my 
Doy ! Tom Cringe ! — here, my lad, here !" . 

3** ®^°^^ ™^^ ^^ room from whence the voice proceeded, which hap- 
^ultv. *? ^^ ^^«s8a Aaron's bedroom ; and there were my three friends 
wretched on sofas, in their night-clothes, with a blanket, sheet, and counter- 
pwk^ over each, forming three sides of a square round a long table, oa 
rnr,*i."*°f *^^^ ^>nne»" ^as smoking, with wines of severalldnds, and 
Lff *J^«^^*y °^ ^^ candles, and then: sabl^ valets, in nice clewi attire^ 
«na smart^rery coats, waitiog on them. 



TOM CRINOLB'8 LOG. S65 

"Ah, Tom," quoth Massa Paul, "delighted to see you; come, you 
seem' to have dry clothes on, so take the head of the table.*' 

1 did sp ; and broke ground forthwith with great zeal. 

•*Tom, a glass of wine, my dear," said Aaron. " Dont you admire us — 
classical, afler the manner of the ancients, eh ? Wagtail's head-dress, and 
Paul's night-cap — oh, the cooxforts of a woollen one ! Ah, Tom, Tom, 
ihe Greeks had no Kilmarnock — none." ' 

VS-e all carried on cheerily, ajid Bang began to sparkle. 
i/^/Well, novi^ since you have weighed the scbooiier and found not mueh 
'Mnting, I feel my spirits rising again. — A glass <k cbamyagne, Tom, — 
]|K>(ir health, boy. — The dip the old hooker has got must have surprised the 
nits and cockroaches. Do you know, Tom, I really haye an idea of writ- 
ing a history of the cruise ; only I am deterred from the melancholy con- 
sciousness uiat every blockhead nowadays fancies hp can write." 

"Why, my dear sir, are yoii not co(]^uettiqg for a compliment? Dont 
we all know, that many of tne crack articles in Ebony's Mag r " 

** Bah,** (flapping his hand on my mouth ; << hold your tongue ; all wrong 
inthat-s — " . 

" Well, if it be not you then, 1 scarcely know to whom to attribute them. 
— Until lately, I only knew you as the warm-hearted West Indian gentle- 
man ; but now I am certain J am to " 

" Tom, holsi your tongue, my beautiful little man. For, although I must 
plead guilty t5 having mixed a little in literary society in my younger 
d«y»— ' A 

^' Alas ! my h^art, those days are gone.* 

'* Ah, Mr. Swop,'* continued Mr. Bang, as the master was ushered into 
the room, " Plate and glasses for Mr. Swop." 

JThe sailor bowed, perchpd himself on the veryed^e of his chair, scarcely 
within long arm's length of the table, and sitting bolt upright, as if he had 
swallowed a spare studdingsatl-boom, drank our healths, and smoothed 
down his hair on his brow. 

" Captain, I come to report the schooner ready to " 

" Poo," rattled out Mr. Bang ; " time for your . tale by and by ; — help 
yourself to some of that capital beef, Peter, — So— — Yes, my love," con- 
tinued our friend, resuming his yam* '* I once ooped even with John WU- 
son himself. Yea, in the fulness of my powers, I feared not even the 
professor." 

''Indeed!" said I. 

'*True, as I am a gentlemati. Why,. I onoe, in a public trial of Bkiilj 
h^t him, even kim, by eighteen measured inches, from toe to heel." 

1 stared. 

*'I was the slighter man of- the two, certainly. Still, in a flying leap, 1 
^ways had the best of it, until he astonished the world with the Isle of Palms, 
From that day forth, my springiness and elasticity left me. * Fallen was 
niy muscles' brawny vaunt.' I quailed. My eenius stood rebuked before 
him. Nevertheless, at hop^step-and'jumip I was nts matdt still. When out 
cune the City of the Plague ! From that hour, the Great Ostrich could not 
hold the candle to the Fljdng Pluloaopher. And now. Heaven hel^ me ! I 
c&n scarcely cover nineteen feet, with every advantage of ground for the 
^* It is true, the professor was always in condition, and never required 
trainiajv ; now, unless I had time for my hard food, I wds seidotn in wind." 

Mr. Peter Swop, imboldened and brightened by the wine hQ had so in- 
, ^Qfltriously swiiled, and willing to contribute his quota of conversation, 
haviuff previoosly jambled in his noddle what Mr. Bang had said about an 
<>8tnch, and hard food, asked^ across the tahle — 

"Do you believe ostriches eat iron, Mr. Bang?" 



966 TOM CRINGrjlls XiO^ 

Mr. Ban§ slowly put down his glass, and looking wHh the Vsoet imper- 
turbable senousness the innocent master ri^t in the face, exclaimed — 

" Ostriches eat iron ! — Do I believe ostnches eat iron, did you say, Mr. 
Swop ? Will you have the great kindness to tell me if this glass of nMukiim 
be poison, Mr. Swop? Why, when Captain Ciin^e there was in the Bight 
of Benin, from which 

' One comes out 
Where a hundred go in,' ^ 

oB boBidof the — whit d'ye call her? I forget her name — they had a 
tame ostrich, >ii?hich was the wonder of the wh^e squadron. At the first go* 
off it had plenty of food, but at length they had to put it on short allowaBce 
of a Winchester bushel of tenpenny nails and a pump*bolt a day ; bat 
their supplies failing, they had even to reduce this quantity, whereby the 
poor bird, after unavailing endeavours to get at the iron ballast, wa& driven 
to pick out the iron bolts of the ship in the clear mooi^g^ ^^^t when no 
one was thinking of it ; so that the craft would soon have been a perfect 
wreck. And as the commodore would not hear of the creature beine 
killed, Tom there undertook to keep it on copper bolts and sheathing untO 
they reached Cape Coast But it would not do ; t^e copper soared on its 
stomach, and.it died. Believe an ostrich eats iron, quotha ! But to'retum 
to the training for the jump — 1 used to stick to beef-steaks ^d a thimlile- 
lul of Burton ale ; and again I trifsd the dried knuckle parta*of le^ of five- 
year-old black-faced mutton ; but, latterly, t trained best, so faf as^wind 

was concerned, on birsled pease and whisky '* 

" On what?" shouted I, m great astonisAiment. " On what?" 
" Yes, my boys ; parched pease and whisky. Charge properly with 
birsled pease, and if you take a calker ju^t as you begin your run, tnereis 
the linstock to the ^un for you» and away you fly through tho. air on the 
8elf*propeilrng prinaple of the Con^reve rocket 'Well might that amialdfi,. 
and venerable, and most learned Thebap, Cockibus Bungo, wko always 
held the stakes on these great occasions, exclaim, in his astonishment, to 
Cheesey, the Janitor of many days — as 

*Like fire from flint I glanctd away,' 

disdaining the laws of giavitation — 

"Epatrithj viXtta 
HiBsVi x&dev'xiraaau 

By Meorcmry, I swear,— yea, by his winged heel, I shall have at the pfo- 
fessor yet, if I live, and whiskjr aod fai»led pease fail me not ." 

Here Paul and I laughed outright; but Mr. Wagtail appeared .oat of 
sorts, somehow ; and Swop looked first at one, and £1^ at another, with 
a look of the most ludtcrous uno^tainty as to whether Mr. Bui£ was 
quizzing him, or telUng a verity. . ^ 

« Why, Wagtail," 6aid Gelid, " what ails you, mv boy ?" 
' I looked towards our little amiable fat friend. BUs .»ce was much flushed, 
idthoogh I learned that he had been unusually abst^nious, and he ap^GtaoA 
heated and restless, and had evidently feverish symptoms abont him. 

<* Who's there?" sud Wagtail, looking towards die door with a tmatd 
look. 

It was Taikacklc, with two of the boys carrying a litter, followed by 
Peter Manffliove, as if he had been chief mourner at a funeraL Out of the 
litter a black paw, with fishes or splints whipped round* it by a band of 
spunyam, protruded, and kept swaying about hke a pendaluiD. 

" What have you got there, Mr. Tailtackie7" 



The gunner tamed round. 

** Oh, it is a vagary of Peter MangroTe*8, sir. Not contented with set- 
tmg the doctor to set Sneezer*8 starboard foreleg, he insists on bringing him 
away from among the people at the capstan-house." 

/^Tnie, Massa — Massa Tailtackle say true ; de poor dumb dog never 
sHall cure him leg none at all, *mons de men dere ; dev all love nim so 
mosh, and make of him so mosh, and stuff Bim wid salt wittal so mosh, 
till him blood inflammation like hell ; and den him so good temper, and 
80 gratify wid dere attention, dat I believe him will eat ml him kickeiiboo 
of Borefut, [surfeit, I presumed j] and, beside, I know de dog healt will in- 
stantly mend if him see yoo. Oh, Massa Aaron, [our friend was smiling,] - 
' it not like you to make ran of poor black felloW) when, him is take de part 
of Boch old friepd as poor Sneezer. De captain dere cannot laugh, dat is 
if him will only fink on dat fearful cove at Puerto Escondido, and what 
Sneezer did for bote of we dere.** 

"Well, well, Mangroye, my man," said Mr. Bang, <<1 Will ask leave of 
my friends here 1o hiaye the dog bestowed in a comer of the piazza ; so let 
the boys lay him down there, and here is a class of grog for you — so.— 
Now go back again," — as the poor fellow had drank our nealths. 

Here Snee^^er, who had been still as it mouse all this while, put his black 
nioat out of the hamtaiock, and began to cheep and whine in his gladness 
at seeinv his master, and the large tears ran dpwn his coal-black muzzle 
as he licked my hand, while every nonr and then he gaye a short fondling 
haik, as if he had saiid, *'Ahj master, I thought you had forgotten me 
altogether, ever since the action where f got my leg broke by a grape shot| 
bat 1 find I am mistaken." 
"Now, Tailtackle, what say you?" 

** We may ease off the tackles to-morrow afternoon," said the gunner, 
"and right the schooner, sir ; we have put in a dozen cashew knees, as 
tough as leather, and bolted the planks tight and fast You saw these 
he^vy quarters did us no good, sir ; I hope you will beautify her again, now 
nnce the Spaniard's shot lias pretty well demolished them already. I hope 
you wont replace them, sir. I hope Captain Transom may see her as sne 
should he, as sh^ was when your nonour had your first pleasure cruise in 
ber.** Here — but I may have dre&med it — I thought the ouid m the honest 
fellow^s cheek stuck out in higher relief than usual for a short space. 
" We shall see, we shall see," said I. 

** I say, Don Timotheus,»; quoth Bang, " you don»t mean to be off with- 
out drinking our healths ?" as he tipped him a tumbler of brandy grog of 
▼cry dangerous strength. 

The warrant officer drank it, and vanished, and presently Mr. Gelid's 
brother, who had just returned from one of the otU islands, made his ap* 
p^arance, and afler the greeting between them was over, the stranger 
advanced, and-with much grace mvited us en nuuae to his house. By this 
time Mr.^ Wagtail was so ill, (hat we could not moye that night, our chief 
concern now being to Bee him properly bestowed, and very soon 1 was con- 
^ced that his disease was a violent bihous fever. 

The old bro^n landlady, Uke all her caste, was a most excellent nurse ; 
^nd nfter the most approved and skilful surgeon of the town had seen him, 
tod, prescribed what was thought right, we all turned in. Next morning, 
before any of us were up, a whole plateful of bards were handed to us, and 
^vtnng the forenoon these were followed by as many invitations to dinner. 
We had difficulty in making our election, but that day I remember we 

^ined at the beautiful Mrs. C 's, and in the evening adjourned to a 

ball ^ a very ^ay afl^r ; and I do freely -avow, that I never saw so many 
pretty women m a community of the same nze before. Oh ! ^it was a little 



969' TOM grjhicuub'« loo. 

paradise, and not without its Eve. But sueh an Eve ! J scarcely think tiie 
old Serpent himself could have found it in his heart to have beguiled her* 

*^ I say, Tom, my dear boy," said Mr. Bang, >' do you see that darling 7 
Oh, who can picture to himself^ without a tear, that such a creature of lights 
such an ethereal-looking thin^, whoqe step ' would ne'er wear out the ever- 
lasting flint,* that floatmg gofwamer on the thin air, shall one day became 
an anxious-looking, shaip-featured, paie-faoed,iQttd-tongued, thin-bosomed, 
broad-bottomed wife !*' 

The neit dav, or rather in the same night, his majesty's ship Rabo ar> 
rrfed, and the first tidings we had of it in the morning were communicated 
by Captain Ctueuedechat himself^ an honest, uproarious sailor, who chose to- 
begin, as many a worthy ends, fay driving up to the door of the lodging in 
a cart . . 

** Is the captain of the amall schooner that was swamped, bcse ?" he 
asked of Massa Pegtop. 

'Free and easy this, tnOaght L 

*f Yes, sir, Captain Cringle is here, but him no get up vet." \ 

** Oh, never mmd, tell him not to hnny himself; but where is the table 
laid for breakfast 7*^ 

" Here, «r," iwid Pegtop, as he showed bim into the piazza. 

<' Ah, that will do — so, give me the newspap'er, ^> tol de roi," and he 
began reading and einnng, in all the buoyancy of mind consequent on 
escaping from shipboara aiier a three months' cruiae. 

I dressed and came to him aa soon as 1 could ; uid the gallant captain, 
whom I had figured to myself a fine light gossamer lad of twenty-two, 
atared me in the fiice as a fat elderly cock of forty at the least ; and as ta 
bulk, I would not have guaranteed that eighteen stone tjould have made 
him kiek the beam. 'However, he was an excellent fellow, and that day 
he and his crew were of most essential service in assisting me in refitting 
the Wave, for which I shall always be gmtefiiL I had spent the greater 
part of the fopenoon in my professional duty, but about two o'clock 1 had 
knocked <sSf, in order to make a fsw calls on the families to whom- I had 
introduction, and who wen afterwards so sienally kiild to me. ' I Uien le- 
turned to our lodgings in order to dress for dmner, before I sallied iforth to 
worthy oU Mr. N- — % where we were idl to ^ne, when I met Aaron. 

'* No chance of our removing to Peter Gelid's this evening." 

«Why?" I asked. 

*<Oh, poor Pepperpot Wagtail is heoome alanmngly ill ; inflammatory 

symptoms have appeared, and " Here the colloquy was cut short bv 

the entrance of Mrs. Peter G«lid — a pretty woman enough. She .had 
eome to learn herself from our landlady how Mr. Wagtail was, and with 
the kindliness of the country, she volunteered to visit poor little Waggy 
in his sick-bed. I did not go into the room with her ; but when she re- 
turned, she startled us all a ^ood deal^ by stating her opinion that the wor- 
thy man was really veiy ill,4n which she was corroborated by the doctoi^ 
who now arrived. • So soon as the nudim saw hiin^-he bled him, and after 

Erescribing a lot of effervescing draughts, and vanous febrifuge mixtures, 
e left a large blister with the md brown landlady, to be appfied over his 
stomach if tne wavering and fli^tiness did not leave hxnj before nmooingi 

We retdmed early after dinner ffom Mr. N 's to our lodgings, a.nd as 

I knew Gelid was expects at Ihs brother's in the evening, to meet a largs 
tt8sembla|e of kindred, and as the ni^ was rainy and ten^pestuons, I 
persuaded him to trust the watch to me ; and as our brown laiidla,dy had 
4>een up nearly the whole of -the previous night, 1 sent for Tailtackle to 
apell me, while the black valets aeted with great assiduity in their capacity 
of 8urgeon*s mates. About two in the moming Mr. Wagtail became de- 
lirious, and it was all that I could do, aided by my sable assistants, and an 



TDK o&nreuBPs soff. 

«ld bflack-XMurscj tor hold bim down in Mb bed. Now was th« time to dap 
OR the blister, but' he repeate^lT tore it off, bo' that at length we kad to give 
it up for an impracticable job ; and Tailtaokle, wfaom 1 had. oallad uoni • 
his pallet, where he had gone to lie dovfn for an hour, placed the cauttfev, 
as toe Sfmniards call it, at the side of the bed. 

**No use in trying this any more at present,** said I ; " wc must wait 
until he gets quieter, Mr. Tailtaekle ; so go to youit bed, and I shall lie 
downron this sofa here,'where Marie Paparoche ** (this was our old land- 
lady) ''has spread sheets, I see, and made all comibitable. And send 
Mr. Bang's servant, will you';»» (fHend Aaron had ridden into the country 
after dinned tb visit a friend, and the storm, as I conjectuned, had kept him 
there j) « he is fresh, and will eali me in case I be wantec^ or Mr. Wagtail 
gets worse." -- * 

I lay do\Vn, apd soon fell fast asleep, and I remembered nothing; until I 
awoke about eleven o'clock next moming, and heavd Mr. Bang speaking 
to Wagtail, at whose bedside he was standing. 

" Pepperpoj:, my dear, be thankfol — you are <juite cool — ' a fine moistuiie 
on year •skin^thidr morning — be thankful, rayliUie man — how did your 
bUetenise?" 

" My good fri^d,*' auoth"Wagtaili in a thin weak voice, "I can't teil 

— 1 don't know ;.but this I perseive, that I am unable to rise, whether it 
has- risen or no." 

' ' «* Ah — weak,** quotji Gelid, who had fiow entered the room. 

•/Nay." said Pepperpot, **not so weak as deucedly sore, and on a very 
nnfomantic spot, my dears." 

*< Why," said Aaron, «*the pit of the stomach is not a very genteel do. 
tertment, nor the abdomen neither." 

" Why," said Wagtail, ** I have no blister on either of those places, but 
if4t were possible to dream of such a thing, I would say it had been clapped 

on " 

Here his innate propriety tongue-tied him. 

- ««Eh ?" said Aaron ; " what — has the causHeothat was intended for the 
frimMers of Belgiium been clappecl by mistake on the broad PifysBos ?" 

And so m very truth jt turned out; for while we slept, the patient had 
risen, and sat down on the blister that lay, as already mentioned, on a 
chair at his bedside, and again toppling into bed, had fallen into a sound 
sleep, from which he had but a fewimoments before the time I write of 

«woke. n L -.XT L 1- J 

« Why, now," continued AaVon, to the doctor of the Wave, who had 
jtet entered — " why, here is a discovery, my dear doctor. You clan a 
hot blister on a poor fellow's head to cool it, but Doctor Oringle there has 
cooled' Master Wagtail's' brain, by blistering his stem — eh? — Make 
ttotes, and mind you report this to the College of Surgeons."* 

♦ In tb^ manuscript LogformrdeA by Mr: Bang, who klndjy andertakta lo correct 
tin pro'ofB during his frwod Cria«ie»8 absence in tha North Sea, there I3 a leaf wafered 
in here, with the followinff in Mr. Aaron's own handwriting— . ... r„^ 

** Master Tomoiy ha«« allowed his fancy some small poetical licenses m tnis his L.og. 
First of all, in Chapter xHL he lays me out on the table, and makee the «corptoa 
Sling me In the night, at^Don Eicardo Campana»8, whereas the viUaIn him«elf waa 
the hero of the story, and the roan on whom Transom played off bis tricics. wut 
not content with this, he makes a bad pun, when speaking of Francosca Cangrejo, 
wlkich he puts into ray mouth, forsooth, as if I had not sins enouch of my o^nj^J^an- 
surer for. And, secondly, in the present chapter, why he was liimself m very truth 
tlM real King of the NetJ^erlands, the integrity of whose low countries was violated, 
and not poor Wagtail— »u thus: Squire Pepperpot, in his delirium, irritated by the 
MTtthaiCriniW had good-naturedly taken In endeavouring to clap the blister on his 
Stomach, watched his opportunity, and when all hands had fallen into a sound sleep, 
faecot up and approached the sofa, where the nautical was snoozin.f Tom, honest 
fellow, dreaming uo^arm, was luxuriating in the genial cliaiate, and sleeping very 
much as we are given to believe little pigs do, as described in the old song, so that rep. 



VtO Tov csnrciLB's log. 

I cleared myielf of these imputatioiiB. Wagtail recoyered, our refittite 

' was completed ; our wood, and water, and piovisionflv npleniahed ; an^ 

• after spending, one of the happiest ftntnights of my lHe,tn one contina^ 

round of gayety, I prepared to leave, with tears in ray eyes, £ wili confess 

— the clear waters, bright blue skies, gtotious-diDiste, and warm-heaited 
community of Nassau, New Providence. Well might that old viUain 
Blackbeaid have made this sweet spot ins (afourite rendezvous, j^y the 
way, this same John Teach, or Blackboard, bad fourteen wivesjd the lively 
island ; and I am not sure bat I couikl have picked ont^^dimetfaing ap- 
proximating to the aforesaid number myself,^witb time <:Cnd opportunity 
from among such a galaxy of loveliness as then shqitf^ an(i;^sparkled in 
this dear little town. Speaking of the pirate Bla^lKiBiHird) I ou^bt to have 
related that one morning when I was at breakfast at Mrs. C-ff — 's, the 
amiabla, and. beautiful, and innocent 'giil-m9tfoti--> ay, you diigerciUnuB 
son of a soa-cook, you may turn up your not^at the expresason, fcait if yea 
could have seen the burden of mjr jK»ng'*' drt law her, and felt the efe^in- 
des of her manner and conversation a^*( telt them — but le( us stick to 
Blackboard, if you please. We were all comfortably seated at bieak&st; 
I had finished my sixth egg, had concealed a beautiful dhed snapper, be- 
fore which even a nztord naddock sank into^insiaiifioance, and waa be- 
thinking me of finishing off with a slioe of Scotch mutton-ham, when in 
slid Mr. Bang. He was received with all possible oor^ality, and ooqi- 
menced operations very vigcMWiely. 

He was an amazing favourite of our hostess, (as where was he not a 
favourite ?) so that it was somd time before he even looked my way.- We 
were in the midst of a discussion 'regarding.the beauty of New Providence, 
and the West India islands in general*; andl was remarking that nature 
had been libeiul, that the scenery was unquestionably magnificent in the 
larger islands, and beautiful in the smaller ; but there were none of tho«e 
heart-stirring reminiscences, none of those thrilling electrical associationSy 
which vibrate to the heart at visiting sceneb in Europe fan^ous in antiquity 

— famous as the spot in which recent victories had been' achieved -^ famous 
even for the very freebooters, who once held unlawful sway in the neigh- 
boarlM>od. <* Whv, there has never fTourished hereabouU, for instance, 
even one thoroao;hly melodramatic thief." Massa Aaron let me go on, 
nntil he had nearly finished his breakfast Atlenvth he fired a shot at me. 

** I say, Tom, you are expatiating, I see. Nomipg h^rt-stirring, say 
you ? In new countries it would bother you to have old associations cer-% 
tainly ; and you have had your Rob Roy, I grant you, and the old country 
has had her Robin Hood. But has not Jamaiea had her Three-fingered 
Jack ? Ay, a more gentleipanlike scoundrel than either of the former. 
When did Jack refuse a pfece of yam, and a cordial from his horn, 'to the 
wayworn man, white or black ? When did he injure a woman ? When 
did Jack refase food and a draught of 'Cold water, the greatest boon, in our 
ardent climate, that he could offisr, te a wearied cl)tra 7. Oh, there was 
much poetry in the poor fellofv ! And here,, had they not that niost melo- 
dramatic (as you chooser to word it) of thieves, B^iM;X:foQard, before whom 
BbuhetLtd must for ever hide his diminished head ? Why, Bluebeard had 
only one wife at a time, although he murdered five of them, whereas Black- 

perpot had no difficulty in applying the argoment a poateriorif and having covered np 
the sleeping man-of-war, wftn the emutico adhering to his latter end like bird-Hmfe, fie 
vetired noiseless as a cat to his own quarters. Time ran x)n, and when the blister 
should have risen next morning on Wagtall'e stomach, Gaptafn Cringle coQJd not riat, 
■ and the jest went round ; but Thomas nevertheless went anout as tifluaf, uid was tta^ 
ga^pest of the gay, dancing and singing ; but whenever he dined out,- he always car- 
ried a brechum with him. —This I vouch for. — A. B." 

* ** Burden. — Tom was right here : . she was within a week of h«r confinement.— 
A. B.'» 



Tail C&IlfGIiK> LOO. ^t 

beard had seldom fewer tfaaa a dozen, and he was never known to murder 
above three. Bat I have fallen in with such a treasure ! Oh, siich a dis- 
covery ! i have been communing with Noah himself — with an old negro^ 
who remembers this very Blackbcard — the pirate Blackbeard." 

** The deuce,*' said I ; ** impossible !" 

'' But U is true« Why it is onlj ninety-four years ago since the scoun- 
drel flourished j and. this Ad cock is one hundred and ten. I havejotted 
it dowa — worth a hundred pounds. . Read^ my adorable Mrs. C- — r, 
read." . . 

" But, ixiy dear Mr. Bang,*' said she, " had you not better read it your- 
self?" 

** Yes, if you please," quoth Aaron, who forthwith set himself to make 
the beqjt use of his time. 

1 

I 

. MBMOUl or JOHN TAAOH, ESQUUIS, VtH^OARLT CALLED BLAC^IBAIU)^ 

BT AARON 'A^O, E^^S^, F.R.8. 



-" He was ^he miUlest ibamvei^d man 



That ever scuUled ship, 6r cut a tlirokt ; 
, With such true breeding of a gentleman, 

' iTou never could discern his real thought. 
Pity he loved adventurous lifers variety, 
He was so great a loss to good society."' 

John Teach, or Blackbeard« was a very eminent man —a very handsome 
man, and a very devil among the ladies. 

He was a Welshman, and introduced the leek into Nassau, abqut the 
year 1718, and was a very |:6markable personage, although, from some sin- 
gular imperfection in his> moral constitution, ne never could distinguish 
clearly between meum and tuunu 

He found his patrimony was not sufficient to support him.; and as he 
disliked agricultural pursuits as much as mercantile, he sot together forty 
or fifty fine young men one day, and borrowtd a vessel from some mer* 
chants that was lying at the Nore, and set sail for the Bahamas. On his 
way he fell in wim several West Indiamen, and, sending a l>oat on. board 
of each, he asked th^m for the loan of provisions and wine, and aU tiieir 
gold, and silver, and clothes, which request was in every instance but one 
civilly acceded to ; whereupon, drinking their good healtns, he returned to 
his ship. In the instance where he hadbeen uncivilly treated, to show his 
forbearance^ he saluted them with twenty-gne guns ; but by some accident 
the shot had not been withdrawn,, so that unfortunately the contumacious 
ill-bred craft sank, and as Blackboard's own vessel was very crowded, he 
was 'unable to save any of the crew. He was a great admirer of fine air, 
fnd accordingly established himself on the island of New Providence, ana 
mvited a number of elegant young men, who were fond of pleasure 
cruises, to visit him, so that presentiy he found it necessary to launch forth 
in order to b&rrow more provisions. 

At this period he was a great dandy ; and among other vagaries, he allow- 
ed his beard to grow a foot long at the shortest, and then plaited it into 
three strands, indicating that he was a bashaw of no common dimensions. 
He wore red breeches, but no stockings, and sandals of bullock's hide. 
He was a perfect Egyptian in tus cunousness in fine linen, and his shirt 
was always white as tne driven snow when it was clean, which was the 
first Sunday of every month. In waistcoats he was especially select; but 
the tut of them very much depended on the fashion in favour with the last 
gentleman he had borrwoed from. He never wore anything but a full dress 
purple velvet coat, undeir which bristled three brace of pistols^ and two 
46^-6 



iTft roM cmnrciLC^ loo. 

naked stilettoes, only eighteen inches fong, and he had generally a U^ 
m^icYi fizzing in the bow of his' cocked soraper, whereat he lighted his pipe, 
or fired oiTa cannon, as pleased him. 

One of his favourite amusements, when he^ot half slewed, l^as to ad- 
ioum to the hold with his compotators, and kindlins some brimstone 
matches, to dance and roar, as it he had been the devu himself, nntil his 
allies were nearly safibcated. At another time he would blow out the 
candles in the cabin, and blaze away with his loaded pistols at randoni, 
right and left, whereby he severely wounded the feelings of some of his in- 
ttmates bv the poignancy of his wit, all of which he considered a most ex- 
cellent joke, oil he was kind to his fourteen wives as long as he was 
sober, as it is known that he never murdered above three of them. His 
horrowingf however, gave offence to our government, no one can tell how ; 
and at length two of our frigates, the Lime and Pearl, then cruising off the 
American coast, after driving him from his stronghold, hunted him down 
in an inlet in North Carolinai where, hi an eight-gun schooner, with thirty 
desperate fellows, he made a defence worthy of his honourable life, and 
fought so furiously that he killed and wounded more -men of the attacking 
paity than his own crew consisted of; and following up his success, he 
Doarded, sword in hand, the headmost of the two armed sloops, w,hich had 
been detached by the frigates, with ninety men on board, to captiire him ; 
and being followed by twelve men and his trusty Ueutenant, he would have 
earned her out, maugre the disparity of force, had he not fainted frwn loss 
of blood, when, falling on his back, he died where he fell, like a hero*^ 

* His face to the sky, and hi^ feet to the foe -«- *' 

leaving eleven foriorn widows, being the fourteen wives, minus the three 
that he had throttled. 



'<No chivalrous associations indeed! Match me such a character as 
this." 

We all applauded to the echo. Bui I must end my song, for I diould 
never tire in dwelling on the happy days we spent in tms most enchanting 
little island. The lovely blithe girls, and the hospitable kind-hearted men, 
and the children ! I never saw such cherubs, with all the sprightliness <tf 
the littie pale-faced Creoles of the West Indies, while the heaU% bloom rf 
01d £)ngland blossomed on their cheeks. 

*J I say, Tom," said Massa Aaron, on o;ie occasion when I was rather 
tedious on the subject, " all those little charubs, as vou call them, at least 
the most of them, are the offspring of the cotton bales captured in the 
American war." 
""The what ?»♦ said X. 

"The children of the American war — and I will prove it thus— taking 
the time from no less an authority than Hamlet, when he chose to follow the 
great Dictator, Julius Cesar himself, througll all the corruption of our phys- 
ical nature, until he found him stopping a beer barrel — (only imagine the 
froth of one of our disinterested friend Buxton's beer^ barrels, savouring of 
quassia, not hop, fizzing throu|h the clay of Julius Cesar the Roman !) — 
0* thus : If there had been no Yankee war, there would have been no prize 
cargoes of cotton sent into Nassau ; if there had been no prize cargoes 
sent into Nassau, there would have been little money made ; if there had 
J®5"k ^**® nwney made, there would have been fewer marriages ; if there 
nad been fewer marriages, there would have been fewer cherubs. Then 
IB logic for you, my darling. 

« Vour last is a turn sequUwr, my dear sir," said 1, laughing. « But, in 
the mam, Parson Malthus is right, out of Ireland that is, after alL" 



TQM CRINGLS'S LOG* ^8 

That evening I ^t into a small scrape, by impreaaing three apprentices 
eut of a Scotch bng, and if Mr. Bang nad ndt stood my friend, I might 
have got iato serious trouble. Thanks to him, the affiiir was soldered. 

Whan on the eve of sailing, my excellent friends, Messrs. Bans, Gelid, 
and Wagtail, determined, in consequence of letters which they haa receiv- 
ed from Jamaica, to return home in a beautiful armed brig that was to sail 
ii& a few days^ laden with floiv* I cannot well describe how much this 
moved me. Youns and enthusiastic as I was, I had grappled myself with 
hooka of steel to Mr.' Bang ; and now, when he unexpectedly communi- 
cated his intention of leaving me, I felt more forlorn and deserted than I 
was willing to plead to. 

« My dear boy,*' said he, ** make my peace with Transom. If ur^nt 
bosiness had not pressed me, I would not nave broken my promise to rejoiA 
him ; but I am imperiously called for'in Jamaica, where 1 nope soon to see 
YOU.*' He continued, with a slight tremor in his voice, which thrilled to my 
hearty as it vouched for the strong of his regard, — " If ever I am where 
you may come, Tom, and you don't make my house your home, provided 
you ha.ve not a better of your own, I will never forgive vou." He paused. 
** You'young fellows sometimes spend faster than you should do, and quar- 
terly biUs are long of icomins round. I have drawn for more money than 
1^ wanL 1 wish you would let me be your banker for a hundred pounds, 
Tom." 

I squeezed his hand. *<No, no — many, many thanks, my dear sir — 
but I never outrun the constable. Good-by, God bless you. Farewell, 
Mr. Wagtail — • Mr. Gelid, adieu." I tumbled into the boat and pulled on 
hoaxd. The first Uiing I did was to send the wine and sea stock, a most 
exuberant assortment unquestionably, belonging to my Jamaica friends, 
ashoxo ; but, to my surprise, 'the faioat was sent back, with Mr. Bang's 
card,, on which was written in pencil, " Don't affront us, , Captain Cringle.'* 
Thereupon I got the schooner under weigh, and no event worth narrating 
tiimed^up unm we anchored close to the post-office at Crooked Island, two 
day^ after. 

We found the Firebrand there, and the post-office maiUboat, with her 
ted flag and white horse, in it, and I went on board the corvette to deliver 
my official letter, detailing the incidents of the czliise, and was most gra* 
ciously received by my captaiq^ 

There was a sail in signt when we anchored, which at first we took for 
tl|e Jamaica packet ; but it turned out to be the Tinker, friend Bang's flour- 
loaded brig; and by five in the evening our friends were all three once 
more restored to us, but, alas ! so far as regarded two of them, only for a 
fHonient. Messrs. Qelid and Wagtail baa, on second thoughts, it seems, 
hauled Iheir wind to lay in a stock of turtle at Crooked Island, and I went 
ashore w