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could live without shell-Rish. It is only by attending to the accounts of respectable travellers regarding foreign countries, that the clouds of vulgar error and prejudice can be removed; and, in this way, it is now firmly believed by all sensible men that there is such a creature as a camelopard or a kanguroo in the world; and that there are some countries where oysters, and bread and milk, grow upon trees—all of which would have been set down to the credit of Aboulfouaris, and the Arabian Nights, at no very distant period. Accordingly, by way of fostering this vulgar incredulity, it is more than probable that the first accounts of the Patagonians furnished Swift with a hint for his giants in Gulliver's Travels; as the adventures of Baron de Tott, among the Turks, at a much later period, produced the memoirs of the unparalleled Baron Munchausen! Bruce's veracity regarding what he saw in Abyssinia was likewise called in question without ceremony; and it was not till a considerable time after his death, that the character of that highminded traveller was proved to be without a flaw. . With the view of removing such prejudices as these, which are almost always based on ignorance, we shall, in this and a few succeeding articles, bring forward the accounts given by some travellers of unquestionable authority, of their observations and adventures in uncivilized countries; taking care to select such as appear to be most uncommon, and such as may afford most amusement and instruction to our youthful readers in particular. What Africa was to the ancients in the
of producing novelties, America has been to the mod
Utopia, New Atlantis, El Dorado, Fairy Land, and the Painters' Wives' Islands, were all said by the wits of the sixteenth century to bc portions of this lately discovered quarter of the globe. “ The Painter's Wife's Island,” says Dr. Huelyn, “ is an island of this tract, mentioned by Sir Walter Faleigh in his History of the World; of which he was informed by Don Pedro de Sarmiento, a Spanish gentleman employed by his king in planting some colonies on the Straits of Magellan, who, being taken prisoner by Sir Walter in his going home, was asked of him about some island which the maps presented in those straits, and might have been of great use to him in his undertaking; to which he merrily replied, that it was to be called the Painter's Wife's Island, saying, that while the painter drew that map, his wife sitting by desired him to put in one country for her, that she in her imagination might have an island of her own. His meaning was, that there was no such island as the maps presented. And I fear the painter's wife hath many islands, and some countries too, upon the continent, in our common maps, which are not really to be found on the strictest search.” Of such sort, also, are what are called the Lands of Chivalry; of which the Isle of Adamants, in Sir Huon of Bordeaux; the Firm Land, in the history of Amadis de Gaul; the Hidden Island, and that of the sage Alart, in Sir Palmerin of England; as also iko Island of Barataria, of which the famous Sancho Panza was some time governor, and the kingdom of Micomicona; "which, as the ingenious author of the History of Don Quixote merrily observeth," says Dr. Huelyn, are not to be found in all the map.'
AN ULTRA-MARINER. According to father Feyjoo, in the month of June, 1674, some young men were walking by the seaside in Bilboa, when one of them, named Francis de la Vega, of about fifteen years of age, suddenly leaped into the sea, and disappeared presently. His companions, after waiting some time, and he not returning, made the event public, and sent an account of it to De la Vega's mother at Lierganès, a small town in the archbishopric of Burgos. At first she discredited his death, but his absence occasioned her fond doubts to vanish, and she mourned his untimely loss.
About five years afterwards some fishermen, in the environs of Cadiz, perceived the figure of a man sometimes swimming, and sometimes plunging under the water. On the next day they saw the same, and mentioned it as a very singular circumstance to several people. They threw their nets, and bating the swimmer with some pieces of bread, they at length caught the object of their attention, which to their astonishment they found to be a wellformed man. They put several questions to him in various languages, but he answered none. They then took him to the convent of St. Francis, where he was exorcised, thinking he might be possessed by some evil spirit. The exorcism was as useless as the questions. At length, after some days, he pronounced the word Lierganès. It happened that a person belonging to that town was present when he uttered the name, as was also the secretary of the Inquisition, who wrote to his correspondent at Lierganès, relating the particulars, and instituting inquiries relative to this very extraordinary man; and he received an account of the young man who had disappeared in the manner before related.
On this information, it was determined that the marine man should be sent to Lierganès; and a Franciscan friar, who was obliged to go there on other business, undertook to conduct him the following year. When they came within a quarter of a league of the town, the friar ordered the
young man to go before and show him the way. He made no answer, but led the friar to the widow De la Vega's house. She recollected him instantly, and embraced him, cried out, “ This is my son, that I lost at Bilboa!” Two of his brothers who were present also knew him immediately, and embraced him with equal tenderness. He, however, did not evince the least sensibility, or the smallest degree of surprise. He spoke no more at Lierganès than at Cadiz, nor could any thing be obtained from him relative to his adventure. He had entirely forgotten his native language, except the words pan, vino, tabaco, “bread, wine, tobacco;" and these he uttered indiscriminately and without application. They asked him if he would have either of these articles; he could make no reply.
For several days together he would eat large quantities of bread, and for as many days following he would not take the least food of any kind. If he was directed to do any thing, he would execute the commission very properly, but without speaking a word: he would carry a letter to where it was addressed, and bring an answer back in writing He was sent one day with a letter to St. Ander; to get there it was necessary to cross the river at Padrenna, which is more than a league wide in that spot; not finding a boat in which he could cross it, he threw himself in, swam over, and delivered the letter as directed.
At this time Francis de la Vega was nearly six
In the morning, think on what you are to do in the day, and at night think on what you have done
a variable number of roundish seeds or beans, compressed on the one side, and covered with a thin loose shell of a chestnut color; when roasted, they
country where edible fruits of indigenous growth are few, they are at least a curiosity.
feet in height, and well formed, with a fair skin, and red hair as short as a new-born infant's. He always went barefooted, and had scarcely any nails either on his hands or feet. He never dressed himself but when he was told to do it. The same with eating; what was offered to him he accepted, but he never asked for food.
In this way he remained at his mother's nine years, when he again disappeared, without any apparent cause, and no one knew how. It may be supposed, however, that the motive of feeling which induced his first disappearance influenced the second. Some time afterwards it was reported that an inhabitant of Lierganès again saw Francis de la Vega in some port of Asturias; but this was never confirmed.
When this very singular man was first taken out of the sea at Cadiz, it is said that his body was entirely covered with scales, but they fell off soon after his coming out of the water. They also add, that different parts of his body were as hard as shagreen.
Father Feyjoo adds many philosophical reflections on the existence of this phenomenon, and on the means by which a man may be enabled to live at the bottom of the sea. He observes that if Francis de la Vega had preserved his reason and the use of speech, he would have given us more instruction and information in marine affairs, than all the naturalists combined.
RAVAGES OF LOCUSTS. The various instances of voracity among insects, sink into insignificance, when compared with the terrible devastation produced by the larvæ of the locust—the scourge of oriental countries.
“ A fire devoureth before them," says the prophet Joel, " and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. The sound of their wings is as the sound of chariots, of many horses running to battle; on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle-array. Before their faces, the people shall be much pained, all faces shall gather blackness. They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one in his ways, and they shall not break their ranks; neither shall one thrust another.”—Joel ii. 2. &c.
The intelligent traveller, Dr Shaw, was an eye witness of their devastations in Barbary in 1724, where they first appeared about the end of March, their numbers increasing so much in the beginning of April as literally to darken the sun; but by the middle of May they began to disappear, retiring into the Mettijiah and other adjacent plains to deposit their eggs. ". These were hatched in June," he continues, " than each of the broods collected itself into a compact body, of a furlong or more in square; and marching afterwards directly forwards toward the sea, they let nothing escape them, they kept their ranks like men of war; climbing over, as they advanced, every tree or wall that was in their way; nay, they entered into our very houses and bed-chambers like 80 many thieves. The inhabitants, to stop their progress, formed trenchers all over their fields and gardens, which they filled with water. Some placed large quantities of heath, stubble, and other combustible matter, in rows, and set them on fire on the approach of the locusts; but this was all to no purpose, for the trenches were quickly filled up, and the fires put out, by immense swarms that succeeded each other."
Even England has been alarmed by the appearance of locusts, a considerable number having visited that island in 1748; but they happily perished without propagating. Other parts of Europe have not been so fortunate. In 1650 a cloud of locusts were seen to enter Russia in three different places; and they afterwards spread themselves over Poland and Lithuania in such astonishing multitudes, that the air was darkened, and the oarth covered with
CASTANOSPERMUM AUSTRALE This singular fruit, which may not improperly be called the chestnut bean, was lately found by Mr. Cunningham upon the banks of the Brisbane river, in Moreton Bay, New South Wales. It is the produce of a large and handsome tree, which belongs to a new and undescribed genus, though in some particulars it seems allied to Robinia. The leaves are pinnated, upon long footstalks; the leaflets entire, and there is a terminal one. The flowers, which are papilionaceous, are produced at the bases of the leaves in considerable numbers, not unlike those of the Robinia hispida. These flowers are succeeded by pods, very large, hard, and of brownish, or cinnamon color. These pods contain
their numbers. In some places they were seen lying dead, heaped upon each other to the depth of four foet; in others they covered the surface of the ground like a black cloth: the trees bent with their weight, and the damage the country sustained exceeded computation. They have frequently come also from Africa into Italy and Spain. In the year 591 an infinite army of locusts, of a size unusually large, ravaged a considerable part of Italy, and being at last cast into the sea, (as seems for the most part to be their fate,) a pestilence, it is alleged, arose from their stench, which carried off nearly a million of men and beasts. In the Venetian territory, likewise, in 1478, more than thirty thousand persons are said to have perished in a famine chiefly occasioned by the depredations of locusts.
vision descended to her family, so much discomposed as to call her father's attention. He obiained an account of the cause of her disturbance, and expressed his intention to watch in the apartment next night. He sat, accordingly, in his daughter's chamber, where she also attended him. Twilight came, and nothing appeared; but as the gray light faded into darkness, the same female figure was seen hovering on the window; the same shadowy form; the same pale light around the head; the same inclinations, as the evening before, “What do you think of this?" said the daughter to the astonished father. “Any thing, my dear, said the father, “rather than allow that we look upon what is supernatural."
A strict research established a natural cause for the appearance on the window. It was the custom of an old woman, to whom the garden beneath was rented, to go out at night to gather cabbages. The lantern she carried in her hand, threw up the refracted reflection of her form on the chapel window. As she stooped to gather her cabbages, the reflection appeared to bend forward; and that was the whole matter.- Sir Walter Scott's Demonology.
Spirit of good! on this week's verge I stand,
SASSAFRAS TEA.-A writer in the Farmer's Register, after stating the difficulty which he has experienced in subduing sassafras bushes, gives the following account of the exportation of the roots :
Upon chewing the leaves, at any time from their most tender and succulent state, to their full maturity, they will be found full of mucilage, which, it seems likely, may be of use in medicine or the arts. It is well known that every part of the sassafras tree has a delightful smell and pleasant taste. The blossoms dried, and the bark of the root, make a tea which is so agreeable that I think nothing but the abundance and cheapness of the material has prevented its being generally used for this purpose. About twenty years ago, a trade in the roots of the sassafras was commenced by sending it from James's river to England, where the use of the tea was extending among the lower classes. The roots commanded a good price, and the trade promised to be profitable to us; but the jealousy of the East India Company as it was said) caused this new trade to be quickly destroyed, by new and prohibitory duties on the article. During the few years that ihe exportation continued, the large roots of nearly all the sassafras trees in my neighborhood were dug up for that purpose; but as there was no difference of price offered, the roois of small shrubs, (though vastly superior in delicacy and strength of flavor,) were never used for sale, as they are much more troublesome to collect. If the purchasers had known the difference of value, a ton of small roots would have been sold for as much as twenty tons of whole stumps and large roots of trees, which formed nearly the whole amount of the commodity exported.-Nero York Farmer.
Greenlanders have no mode of salutation, and laugh at the idea of one person being inferior to another.
CURIOUS CASE OF DECEPTION. A very curious case of deception was communicated to me by the son of the lady principally concerned, and tends to show out of what mean materials a venerable apparition may be sometimes formed. In youth, this lady resided with her father, a man of sense and resolution. Their house was situated in the principal street of a town of some size. The back part of the house ran at right angles to an anabaptist chapel, divided from it by a small cabbage-garden. The young lady used sometimes to indulge the romantic love of solitude, by sitting in her own apartment in the evening, till twilight, and even darkness, was approaching.
One evening, while she was thus placed, she was surprised to see a gleamy figure, as of some aërial being, hovering, as it were, against the arched window in the end of the anabaptist chapel. Its head was surrounded by that halo which painters give to the catholic saints; and, while the young lady's attention was fixed on an object so extraordinary, the figure bent gacefully towards her, more than once, as if intimating a sense of her presence, and then disappeared. The scer of this striking
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The news of the safe return of Captain Ross has been received both in Great Britain and the United States with unfeigned sensations of joy. The hardy navigator, with his nephew, Commander Ross, and the whole of his party except three, two of whom died on the passage out, and one at a later period, arrived at Hull on the morning of Friday, the 18th of October, 1833.
It was in 1829 that Captain Ross fitted out his expedition to determine the practicability of a new passage, which had been confidently stated to exist, particularly by Prince Regent's Inlet, but in consequence of the loss of the foremast of his vessel, the Victory, he was obliged to refit at Wideford, in Greenland. The accounts of his departure from thence on the 27th July, 1829, formed the last authentic intelligence received of the expedition. By the subsequent details it will be perceived that he was picked up by the Isabelle of Hull,—the very ship-by a singular coincidence, in which he made his first voyage to the Arctic regions.
By Captain Ross's account it appears, that the first season (that of 1829,) was the mildest that had ever been recorded, and the sea was more clear of ice than had been experienced during any preceding voyages. On the 13th of August, Capt. Ross reached the spot where the stores of his majesty's late ship, the Fury, were landed.
“ Early in January, 1830,” says Captain Ross, “ we had the good fortune to establish a friendly intercourse with a most interesting consociation of natives, who, being insulated by nature, had never before communicated with strangers; from them we
gradually obtained the important information that we had already seen the continent of America, that about forty miles to the S. W. there were two great seas, one to the west, which was divided from that to the east by a narrow strait or neck of land. The verification of this intelligence either way, on which our future operations so materially depended, devolved on Commander Ross, whọ volunteered his service early in April, and, accompanied by one of the mates, and guided by two of the natives, proceeded to the spot, and found that the north land was connected to the south by two ridges of high land, fifteen miles in breadth, but, taking into account a chain of fresh water lakes, which occupied the valleys between, the dry land, which actually separates the two océans is only five miles This extraordinary isthmus was subsequently visited by myself, when Commander Ross proceeded minutely to survey the seacoast to the southward of the isthmus leading to the westward, which he succeeded in tracing to the ninety-ninth degree, or to one hundred and fifty miles of Cape Turnagain of Franklin, to which point the land, after leading him into the 70th degree of north latitude, trended directly; during the same journey he also surveyed thirty miles of the adjacent coast, or that to the north of the isthmus, which, by also taking a westerly direction, formed the termination of the western sea into a gulf. The rest of this season was employed in tracing the seacoast south of the isthmus leading to the eastward, which was done so as to leave no doubt that it joined, as the natives had previously informed us, to Ockulloe, and the
land forming Repulse Bay. It was also determined that there was no passage to the westward for thirty miles to the northward of our position.
“ This summer, like that of 1818, was beautifully fine, but extremely unfavorable for navigation, and our object being now to try a more northern latitude, we waited with anxiety for the disruption of the ice, but in vain, and our utmost endeavors did not succeed in retracing our steps more than four miles, and it was not until the middle of November that we succeeded in cutting the vessel into a place of security, which we named “Sheriff's Harbor.' I may here mention that we named the newly-discovered continent to the southward, ' Boothia,' as also the isthmus, the peninsula to the north, and the eastern sea, after my worthy friend, Felix Booth, Esq. the truly patriotic citizen of London, who, in the most disinterested manner, enabled me to equip this expedition in a superior style.
" The last winter was in temperature nearly equal to the mean of what had been experienced on the four preceding voyages, but the winters of 1830 and 1831 set in with a degree of violence hitherto beyond record—the thermometer sunk to ninetytwo degrees below the freezing point, and the average of the year was ten degrees below the preceding; but notwithstanding the severity of the summer, we travelled across the country to the west sea by a chain of lakes, thirty miles north of the isthmus, when Commander Ross succeeded in surveying fifty miles more of the coast leading to the northwest, and by tracing the shore to the northward of our position, it was also fully proved that there could be no passage below the seventyfirst degree.
“ This autumn we succeeded in getting the vessel only fourteen miles to the northward, as we had not doubled the Eastern Cape, all hope of saving the ship was at an end, and put quite beyond possibility by another very severe winter; and having only provisions to last us to the 1st of June, 1833, disposition were accordingly made to leave the ship in present port, which (after her) was named Victory Harbor. Provisions and fuel being carried forward in the spring, we left the ship on the 28th May, 1832, for Fury Beach, being the only chance left of saving our lives; owing to the very rugged nature of the ice, we were obliged to keep either upon or close to the land, making the circuit of every bay, thus increasing our distance of two hundred miles by nearly one half; and it was not until the first of July that we reached the beach completely exhausted by hunger and fatigue.
"A hut was speedily constructed, and the boats, three of which had been washed off the beach, but providentially driven on shore again, were repaired during this month; and the unusual heavy appearance of the ice afforded us po cheering prospect until the 1st of August, when in three boats we reached the ill-fated spot where the Fury was first driven on shore, and it was not until the first of September we reached Leopold South Island, now established to be the N. E. point of America, in latitude 73, 56, and longitude 90 west. From the summit of the lofty mountain on the promontory we could see Prince Regent's Inlet, Barrow's Strait, and Lancaster Sound, which presented one impenetrable mass of ice, just as I had seen it in 1818. Here we remained in a state of anxiety and suspense which may be easier imagined than described. All our attempts to push through were vain; at length being forced by want of provisions and the
approach of a very severe winter to return to Fury Beach, where alone there remained wherewith to sustain life, there we arrived on the 7th of October, after a most fatiguing and laborious march, having been obliged to leave our boats at Batty Bay. Our habitation, which consisted of a frame of spars, thirty-two by sixteen feet, covered with canvass, was during the month of November enclosed, and the roof covered with snow, from four to seven feet thick, which being saturated with water when the temperature was fifteen degrees below zero, immediately took the consistency of ice, and thus we actually became the inhabitants of an iceberg during one of the most severe winters hitherto recorded; our sufferings aggravated by want of bedding, clothing, and animal food, need not be dwelt upon. Mr. C. Thomas, the carpenter, was the only man who perished at this beach, but three others, besides one who had lost his foot, were reduced to the last stage of debility, and only thirteen of our number were able to carry provisions in seven journies of sixty-two miles each to Batty Bay.
• We left Fury Beach on the 8th of July, carrying with us three sick men, who were unable to walk, and in six days we reached the boats, where the sick daily recovered. Although the spring was mild, it was not until the 15th August that we had any cheering prospect. A gale from the westward having suddenly opened a lane of water along shore, in two days we reached our former position, and from the mountain we had the satisfaction of seeing clear water across Prince Regent's Inlet, which we crossed on the 17th, and took shelter from a storm twelve miles to the eastward of Cape York. The next day, when the gale abated, we crosscd Admiralty Inlet, and were detained six days on the coast by a strong N. E. wind. On the 25ih we crossed Navy Board Inlet, and on the following morning, to our inexpressible joy, we descried a ship in the offing, becalmed, which proved to be the Isabelle of Hull, the same ship which I commanded in 1818. At noon we reached her, when her enterprising commander, who had in vain searched for us in Prince Regent's Inlet, after giving us three cheers, received us with every demonstration of kindness and hospitality which humanity could dictate. I ought to mention also that Mr. Humphreys, by landing me at Possession Bay, and subsequently on the west coast of Baffin's Bay, afforded me an excellent opportunity of concluding my survey, and of verifying my former chart of that
On the foregoing page, a sketch is given which may convey some idea of the situation of the navigators. The party were not more reduced by their sufferings than might have been expected. They have now recovered from the effects of those sufferings. The circumstance that Captain Ross was rescued by the ship he commanded in 1818, is a curious and happy conclusion of the voyage, the result of which has established, that there is no new (N. W.) passage south of seventy-four degrees.
The true position of the magnetic pole has been discovered, and much valuable information obtained for the iinprovement of geographical and philosophical knowledge. Captain Ross had a good opportunity of verifying his former survey of the coast of Baffin's Bay, which every master of a Greenland ship can testify to be most correct.
On the whole, it may be truly said, that this expedition has done more than any that preceded it; and let it be remembered that Cap!ain Ross and