Слике страница
[blocks in formation]

and affording small opportunities for any literary superstructure, (similar to that of Mr. Croker's edition of Bassompiere's Embassy) unquestionably deserves notice from one singular circumstance connected with the observations upon it; namely, that any work respecting Ireland should be free from party spirit and religious rancour, especially one relative to a period which involves such remarks. Of my three able and amiable associates in commenting on M. le Gouz's tour, two are Roman Catholics, and the notes and illustrations supplied by the gentlemen whose names appear on the title page, bear their respective initials. The notes marked T, are such comments from the original as were considered worth preserving. It is therefore with sincere pleasure that I feel myself called upon to submit to the English reader a work which must be esteemed a literary as well as a political curiosity ; and I trust is the harbinger of more auspicious times.

Could the spirit of M. le Gouz, which appears to have been a benevolent one, behold the present little volume, it might be pleased at the knowledge that his impartial statement has been the means of combining in perfect harmony, observations upon the distracted country which he beheld, from men professing different creeds, and it might apply to itself

[blocks in formation]

the words of a poet of that land in which his bones

repose :

“ With pride I feel that I alone

Have joined these varied gems in one,
For they're a wreath of pearl, and I

The silken cord on which they lie.” The narrative opens, not inappropriately, by the vagaries of a drunken Irish captain. Horace recommends an author to enter at once “in medias res,” a hint which our Gascon traveller seems to have adopted in describing men and matters in Ireland.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]




A. D. 1644.


The sixth of May (1644), we sailedi at ten o'clock at night. Our captain was drunk, and knew not what he did ;. we had lost our passage two or three times by his fault, for in the mornings the wind being contrary, he used to go to the public-house, and when the wind would chop round, he was then incapable of giving orders to the pilots. This drunkard set sail on a sudden and left many respectable passengers ashore, without giving them any notice, who having lost all hope of his weighing anchor so late, were asleep at their inns.

The next morning we met two French vessels from Kinseelle 2 (Kinsale) in Ireland bound to Bristol. About noon we were chased by a vessel of the Par

1 From Mignard (Minehead).-T.

2 A marginal note on the original explains Kinseelle as "voyle (voile) Royal.”—T.

The name is probably derived from two Irish words, ceañ (head) and saille (sea). The sea headland. “The old head of Kinsale,” is a point nearly as well known to seamen as Cape Clear.-C.

liament of forty guns,3 and experienced much apprehension, for it was rumoured that the Parliamentarians threw into the sea all the Irish and those of their party, owing to the massacre the Irish had made in their country of the English Protestants, by a zeal for religion, and of which the list registered is, according to the calculation of the Protestants, 145,000 persons.4

We escaped from them under cover of the night.

On the 14th of the month, a sailor being aloft, cried, “chore, chore,(shore, shore,)5 we discovered the Coast of Wachefort (Wexford), in the 53rd degree of latitude, 6 and bearing away north, we saw to the west a small castle called Wiclos? (Wicklow), in the latitude 55 degrees 40 minutes.8 The captain of the vessel, instead of consulting the compass to avoid the head of a sand bank, the most dangerous on this coast of Ireland, kept in conversation with the pilot uselessly, and after half an hour's sail perceived his error, and began to cry, “Lord God have pity on us, we are lost!-have the anchors ready ;-furl the sails; we are on the head of the bank.- We are only six feet from it.— The skiff! the skiff! - To the long boat.— The oars!—0 God be merciful to us ;by the grace of Jesus Christ, our Lord !—”

3 This ship was either the Lyon of 42 guns, Captain William Smith, or the Bonaventure of 36 guns, Captain Richard Swanley.-C.

4 Why not oppose to this assertion that of the Catholics of the day?--R. See Note I. in Appendix.-C.

5 A marginal note on the original, says “ Chore en Anglois, terre, terre.”—T.

6 Should be to the south of the 53o. The north part of the County of Wexford is in latitude 530g north.-C.

7 The Black Castle, built upon the site of a structure of the twelfth century, by William Fitz William, in 1375, in consideration of which he was appointed Governor of this part of the country. It is urged as a matter of complaint against Lord Castlehaven (Cox. ii. 135), that during the cessation of hostilities between the English and Irish forces, from the 15th September, 1643, to 15th September, 1644, his Lordship should in violation thereof, have seized the Black Castle of Wicklow, and murdered its Protestant garrison.-C.

8 Should be 53° nearly.-C.
The author or printer is very careless of his geography.-R.

We all put our hands to work; and the sailors having taken a rope from the bow of the vessel, fastened it to the skiff and the long boat, and drew us from this danger with much labour and by force of oars. In the evening, certain vapours rising from the

made me believe that it was the land which I saw at the distance of one, two, or three miles. I imagined that I could distinguish trees in great numbers, and even cattle. Looking at this land and wishing to learn its name and what towns it contained, I addressed myself to a Dutch pilot, married in Doublin (Dublin), who undeceived me, and made the following remarks to me. " You are not the first who has erred in the supposition of these things ; the most expert navigators are often deceived by them. That which to us appears land is only a dense vapour which cannot be raised higher in consequence of the season and the absence of the sun.

Those apparent trees and animals are a part of that miasma which


« ПретходнаНастави »