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1 had a great many discourses with them about their circumstances when they were among the savages. They told me readily that the)- had no instances to give of their application or ingenuity in that country; that they were a poor, miserable, dejected handful of people; that if means had been put into their hands,-yet they had so abandoned themselves to despair, and so sunk under the weight of their misfortune, that they thought of nothing but starving. One of them, a grave and sensible man, told me he was convinced they were in the wrong; that it was not the part of wise men to give themselves up to their misery, but always to take hold of the helps which reason offered, as well for present support as for future deliverance: he told me that grief was the most senseless, insignificant passion in the world, for that it regarded only things past, which were generally impossible to be recalled, or to be remedied, but had no views ol things to come, and had no share in any thing that looked like deliverance, but rather added to the affliction than proposed a remedy; and upon this he repeated a Spanish proverb, which though I cannot repeat in just the same words that he spoke it in, yet I remember I made it into an English proverb of my own, thus:—
In trouble to be troubled,
Is to have your trouble doubled.
He ran on then in remarks upon all the little improvements I had made in my solitude; my unwearied application, as he called it; and how I had made a condition which, in its circumstances, was at first much worse than theirs, a thousand times more happy than theirs was, even now when they were all together. He told me it was remarkable that Englishmen had a greater presence of mind, in their distress, than any people that ever he met with; that their unhappy nation and the Portuguese were the worst men in the world to struggle with misfortunes; for that their first step in dangers, after the common efforts were over, was to despair, lie down under it, and die, without rousing their thoughts up to proper remedies for escape.
I told him their case and mine differed exceedingly; thai they were cast upon the shore without necessaries, without supply of food, or present sustenance till they could provide it; that, it was true, I Had this disadvantage and discomfort, that I was alone; but then the supplies I had providentially thrown into my hands, by the unexpected driving of the ship on shore, was such a help as would nave encouraged any creature in the world to have applied himself as I had done. "Seignior," says the Spaniard, "had we poor Spaniards been in your case, we should never have got half those things out of the ship, as you did; nay,''* says he, "we should never have found means to have got a raft to carry them, or to have got the raft on shore without boat or sail; and how much less should we have done if any of us had been alone!" Well, I desired him to abate his compliment, and go on with the history of their coming on shore, where they landed. He told me they unhappily landed at a place where there were people without provisions; whereas, had they had the common sense to have put off to sea again, and gone to another island a little farther, they had found provisions, though without people; there being an island that way, as they had been told, where there were provisions, though no people; that is to say, that the Spaniards of Trinidad had frequently been there, and had filled the island with goats and hogs at several times, where they had bred in such multitudes, and where turtle and seafowls were in such plenty, that they could have been in ^no want of flesh, though they had found no bread; whereas here, they were only sustained with a few roots and herbs, which they understood not, and which had no substance in them, and which the inhabitants gave them sparingly enough; and who could treat them no better, unless they would turn catmibals, and eat men's flesh, which was the great dainty of their country.
They gave me an account how many ways they strove to civilize the savages they were with, and to teach them rational customs in the ordinary way of living, but in vain; and how they retorted it upon them, as unjust, that they, who came there for assistance and support, should attempt to set up for instructors of those that gave them food; intimating, it sterns, that none should set up tor the instructor? of others but tiiose who could live without them.
They gave me dismal accounts of the extremities they were driven to ; how sometimes they were many days without any food at all, the island they were upon being inhabited by a sort of savages that lived more indolent, and for that reason were less supplied with the necessaries of life, than they had reason to believe others were in the same part of the world; and yet they found that these savages were less ravenous and voracious than those who had better supplies of food. Also they added, they could not but see with wThat demonstrations of wisdom and goodness the governing providence of God directs the events of things in the world; which, they said, appeared in their circumstances; for if, pressed by the hardships they were under, and the barrenness of the country where they were, they had searched after a better to lire in, they had then been out of the way of the relief that happened to them by my means.
They then gave me an account how the savages, whom they lived among, expected them to go out writh them into their wars; and it was true, that as they had fire-arms with them, had they not had the disaster to lose their ammunition, they should have been serviceable not only to their friends, but have made themselves terrible both to friends and enemies; but being without powder and shot, and yet in a condition that they could n t in reason deny to go out with their landlords to their wars, ,o when they came into the field of battle, they were in a worse condition than the savages themselves; for they had neither bows nor arrows, nor could they use those the savages gave them; so they could do nothing but stand still, and be wounded with arrows, till they came up in the teeth of their enemy; and then, indeed, the three halberds they had were of use to them, and they would often drive a whole little army before them with those halberds, and sharpened sticks put into the muzzles of their muskets; but that, for all this, they were sometimes surrounded with multitudes, and in great danger from 'their arrows, till at last they found the way to make themselves large targets of wood, which they covered with skins of wild beasts, whose names they knew riot, and these covered them from the arrows of the savages; that, notwithstanding these, they were sometimes in great danger, and five of them were once knocked down together with the clubs of the savages, which was the time when one of them was taken prisoner, that is to say, the Spaniard whom I had relieved ; that at first they thought he had been killed ; but when they afterwards heard he was taken prisoner, they were under the greairst grief imaginable, and would willingly have all ventured their lives to have rescued him.
They told me that when they were so knocked down, the rest of their company rescued them, and stood over them lighting till they were come to themselves, all but him, who, they thought, had been dead; and then they made their way with their halberds and pieces, standing close together in a line, through a body of above a thousand savages, beating down all that came in their way, got the victory over their enemies, but to their great sorrow, because it was with the loss of their friend, whom the other party, finding him alive, carried off, with some others, as I gave an account before.
They described, most affectionately, how they were surprised with joy at the return of their friend and companion in misery, who, they thought, had been devoured by wild beasts c "the worst kind, viz. by wild men; and yet how more and n ore they were surprised with the account he gave them of his errand, and that there was a Christian in any place near, much more one that was able, and had humanity enough, to contribute to their deliverance.
They described how they were astonished at the sight of the relief I sent them, and at the appearance of loaves of bread, things they had not seen since their coming to that miserable place: how often they crossed and blessed it as bread sent from Heaven; and what a reviving cordial it was to their spirits to taste it, as also the other things 1 had sent for their supply; and, after all, they would have told me something of the joy they were in at the sight of a boat and pilots, to carry them away to the person and place from whence all these new comforts came, but it was impossible to express it by words, for their excessive joy naturally driving them to unbecoming extravagances, they had no way to describe them, but by telling me they bordered upon lunacy, having no way to give vent to their passions suitable to the sense that was upon them; that in some it worked one way, and in some another; and that some of them, through a surprise of joy, would burst into tears, others be stark mad, and others immediately faint. This discourse extremely affected me, and called to my mind Friday's ecstasy when he met his father, and the poor people's ecstasy when I took them up at sea after their ship was on fire; the joy of the mate of the ship when he found himself delivered in the place where he expected to perish; and my own joy, when, after twenty-eight years' captivity, I found a good ship ready to carry me to my own country. All these things made me more sensible of the relation of these poor men, and more affected with it.
Having thus given a view of the state of things as 1 found them, I must relate the heads of what I did for these people, and the condition in which I left them. It was their opinion, and mine too? that they would be troubled no more with the savages, or, it they were, they would be able to cut them off, if they were twice as many as before; so they had no concern about that. Then I entered into a serious discourse with the Spaniard, whom I call governor, about their stay in the island; for as I was not come to carry any of them off, so i would not be just to carry off some and leave others, who, perhaps, would be unwilling to stay if their strength was diminished. On the other hand, I told them I came to establish them there, not to remove them; and then I let them know that I had brought with me relief of sundry kinds for them; that I had been at a great charge to supply them with ail things necessary, as well for their convenience as their defence; and that 1 had such and such particular persons with