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Kuj5jin»ui>i uitusuHi. y5
had no flesh, but of goats and fowls, since 1 landed Id this horrid place.
June 18. Rained all that day, and I staid within. 1 thought, at this time, the rain felt cold, and 1 was somewhat chifly; which I knew was not usual in that latitude.
June 19. Very ill, and shivering, as if the weather had been cold.
June 20. No rest all night; violent pains in my head, and feverish.
June 21. Very ill; frightened almost to death with the apprehensions of my sad condition, to be sick, and no help; prayed to God for the first time since the storm off Hull; but scarce knew what 1 said, or why, my thoughts being all confused.
June 22. A little better; but under dreadful apprehensions of sickness.
June 23. Very bad again; cold and shivering, and then a violent headache.
June 24. Much better.
June 25. An ague very violent: the fit held me seven hours; cold fit, and hot, with faint sweats after it.
June 26. Better; and having no victuals to eat, took my gun, but found myself very weak: however, 1 killed a she-goat, and with much difficulty got it home, and broiled some of it, and ate. 1 would fain have stewed it, and made some broth, but had no pot.
June 27. The ague again so violent that I lay a-bed all day, and neither ate nor drank. I was ready to perish for thirst but so weak, I had not strength to stand up, or to get myself any water to drink. Prayed to God again, but was lightheaded: and when I was not, I was so ignorant that I knew not what to say; only lay and cried, "Lord, look upon me! Lord, pity me! Lord, have mercy upon me!" I suppose I did nothing else for two or three hours; till, the fit wearing off, I fell asleep, and did not wake till far in the night. YVhen 1 awoke, I found myself much refreshed, but weak, and exceeding thirsty: however, as 1 had no water in my whole habitation, I was forced to lie till morning, and went to sleep again. In this second sleep, 1 had this terrible dream: 1 thought that 1 was sitting on the ground, on the outside of my wall, where I sat when the storm blew after the earthquake, and that I saw a man descend from a great black cloud, in a bright flame of fire, and light upon the ground: he was all over as bright as a flame, so that 1 could but just bear to look towards him; his countenance was most inexpressibly dreadful, impossible for words to describe: when he stepped upon the ground with his feet, I thought the earth trembled, just as it had done before in the earthquake: and all the air looked, to my apprehension, as if it had been filled with flashes of fire. He had no sooner landed upon the earth, but he moved forward towards me, with a long spear or weapon in his hand to kill me; and when he came to a rising ground, at some distance, he spoke to me, or I heard a voice so terrible that it is impossible to express the terror of it: all that 1 can say 1 understood, was this: "Seeing all these things have not brought thee to repentance, now thou shalt die;" at which words I thought he lifted up the spear that was in his hand to kill me.
No one that shall ever read this account, will expect that 1 should be able to describe the horrors of my soul at this terrible vision; I mean that even while it was a dream, I even dreamed of those horrors; nor is it any more possible to describe the impression that remained upon my mind, when I awaked, and found it was but a dream.
I had, alas! no divine knowledge: what I had received by the good instruction of my father, was then worn out, by an uninterrupted series, for eight years, of seafaring wickedness, and a constant conversation with none but such as were, like myself, wicked and profane to the last degree. I do not remember that 1 had, in all that time, one thought that so much as tended either to looking upward towards God, or inward towards a reflection upon my own ways: but a certain stupidity of soul, without desire of good, or consciousness of evil, had entirely overwhelmed me; and I was all that the mosc hardened, unthinking, wicked creature, among our common sailors, can be supposed to be; not having the least sense, either of the fear of God, in danger, or of thankfulness to him, m deliverances. .
In the relating what is already past of my story, this will be the more easily believed, when 1 shall add, that, through all the v.-inety of miseries that had to this day befallen me, I never had so much as one thought of its being the hand of God, or that it was a just punishment for my sin; either my rebellious behavior against my father, or my present sins, which were great; or even as a punishment for the general course of my wicked life. When I was on the desperate expedition on the desert shores of Africa, I never had so much as one thought of what would become of me; or one wish to God to direct me whither I should go, or to keep me from the danger which apparently surrounaed me, as well from voracious creatures, as cruel savages: but I was quite thoughtless of a God or a Providence; acted like a mere Drute, from the principles of nature, and by the dictates of common sense onty; and, indeed, hardly that. When I was delivered and taken up at sea, by the Portuguese captain, well used, and dealt with justly and honorably, as well as charitably, I had not the least thankfulness in my thoughts. When, again, I was shipwrecked, ruined, and in danger of drowning, on this island, I was as far from remorse, or looking on it as a judgment: I only said to myself often, that I was an unfortunate dog, and born to be always miserable.
It is true, when I first got on shore here, and found all my ship's crew drowned, and myself spared, 1 was surprised with a kind of ecstasy, and some transports of soul, which, had the grace of God assisted, might have come up to true thankfulness; but it ended wnere it began, in a mere common flight of joy; or, as I may say, being glad I was alive, without the least reflection upon the distinguished goodness of the hand which had preserved me, and had singled me out to be preserved when all the rest were destroyed, or an inquiry why Providence had been thus merciful to me; just the same common sort of joy which seamen generally have, after they are got safe ashore from a shipwreck; which they drown all in the next bowl of punch, and forget almost as soon as it is over; and all the rest of my life was like it. Even when I was, afterwards, on due consideration, made sensible of my condition, —how I vvas cast on this dreadful place, out of the reach of human kind, out of all hope of relief, or prospect of redemption,—as soon as I saw but a prospect of living, and that I should not starve and perish for hunger, all the sense of my affliction wore off, and 1 began to be very easy, applied myself to the \Vorks proper for my preservation and supply, and was far enough from being afflicted at my condition, as a judgment from Heaven, or as the hand of God against me: these were thoughts which very seldom entered into my head.
The growing up of the corn, as is hinted in my journal, had, at first, some little influence upon me, and began to alfect me with seriousness, as long as 1 thought it had something miraculous in it; but as soon as that part of the thought vvas removed, all the impression which vvas raised from it wore off also, as 1 have noted already. Even the earthquake, though nothing could be more terrible in its nature, or more immediately directing to the invisible Power which alone directs such things, yet no sooner was the fright over, but the impression it had made went off also. I had no more sense of God, or his judgments, much less of the present affliction of my circumstances being from his hand, than if 1 had been in the most prosperous condition of life. But now, when I began to ne sick, and a leisure view of the miseries of death came to place itself before me; when my spirits began to sink under the burden of a strong distemper, and nature was exhausted with the violence of the fever; conscience, that had slept so long, began to awake; and 1 reproached myself with my past 'ife, in which 1 had so evidently, by uncommon wickedness, provoked the justice of God to lay me under uncommon strokes, and to deal with me in so vindictive a manner. These reflections oppressed me for the second or third day of my distemper; and in the violence, as well of the fever as of the dreadful reproaches of my conscience, extorted from me some words like praying to God; though 1 cannot say it was a prayer attended either with desires or with hopes; it was rather the voice of mere fright and distress. My thoughts were confused; the convictions great upon my mind; and the horror of dying in such a miserable condition raised vapors in my head with the mere apprehension; and in these hurries of my soul, I knew not what my tongue mi^ht express; but it was rather exclamation, sucii as, "Lord, vvhat a miserable creature am I! If I should be sick, 1 shall certainly die for want of help; and what will become .of me'?" Then the tears burst out of my eyes, and 1 could say no more for a good while. In this interval, the good advice of my father came to my mind, and presently his prediction, which I mentioned at the beginning of this story, viz. that if 1 did take this foolish step, God would not bless me; and I should have leisure hereafter to reflect upon having neglected his counsel, when there might be none to assist in my recovery. "Now," said I, aloud, "my dear father's words are come to pass; God's justice has overtaken me, and I have none to help or hear me. 1 rejected the >oice of Providence, which had mercifully put me in a station of life wherein I might have been happy and easy; but 1 would neither see it myself, nor learn from my parents to know the blessing of it. 1 left them to mourn over my folly; and now I am left to mourn under the consequences of it: 1 refused their help and assistance, who would have pushed me in the world, and would have made every thing easy to me; and now I have difficulties to struggle with, too great for even nature itself to support; and no assistance, no comfort, no advice." Then I cried out, " Lord, be my help, for I am in great distress." Tlrs was the first prayer, if I may call it so, that T had made for many years. J3ut I return to my journal,