Life and adventures of Robinson Crusoe (2)

For other versions of this work, see Robinson Crusoe (Defoe).
Life and adventures of Robinson Crusoe (c. 1855)
by Daniel Defoe

Daniel Defoe is bibliographic antecedent, not author

4210984Life and adventures of Robinson Crusoec/1855Daniel Defoe


NEW AND IMPROVED SERIES,
No. 40.
------
THE LIFE AND ADVENTURES
OF
ROBINSON CRUSOE.



GLASGOW:
PRINTED FOR THE BOOKSELLERS.
1855.
------
Price One Penny.



THE LIFE AND ADVENTURES OF
ROBINSON CRUSOE.

I was born of a good family in the city of York, where my father, who was a native of Bremen, had settled after his having got a handsome estate by merchandise. My brain was early filled with rambling thoughts, and when I grew up, my father often persuaded me to settle to some business, and my mother used the tenderest entreaties; yet nothing could prevail on me to lay aside my desire of going to sea, notwithstanding the extreme uneasiness which my father and mother always showed at the thoughts of my leaving them. I hardened myself against the prudent and kind advice of my indulgent parents: and being one day at Hull, I met with one of my companions, who was going to sea in his father's ship, he easily persuaded me to go with him.

On the 1st of September, 1651, I went on board this ship, which was bound for London, and without letting my father know the rash and disobedient step I had taken, set sail; but no sooner was the ship out of the Humber, than the wind began to blow, and the sea to rise in a most terrible manner. Having never been at sea before, I was extremely sick, and my mind was filled with terror. I then began to grow sensible of my wickedness, in disobeying the best of parents.

The next day the wind abated, and the sea grew calm; I was no longer sick, and my companion laughed at my fears. The weather continued calm for several days, and we at length came into Yarmouth Roads, where we east anchor to wait for a wind. On the eighth day, in the morning, the wind inereased, and we bad all hands at work to strike our top-masts, and to cast our sheet-anchor. I now began to see terror and amazement in the faces even of the seamen themselves; and as the master passed by me, I could hear him say softly to himself, “Lord be merciful to us, we shall be lost.” When I heard this I was terribly frightened; such a dismal sight I never before saw, the sea ran mountains high, and broke upon us every three or four minutes. The storm still increased, and I saw (what is but too seldom seen) the master, the boatswain, and several others at prayers, expecting that every moment the ship would go to the bottom. The storm, however, began to abate, the master fired guns for help, and a light ship which hade rode it out just a-head of us, ventured a boat out to help us. It was with the utmost hazard that it came near us; and our men casting a rope over the stern with a buoy, they after much labour and hazard got hold of it, and we, hauling them close under the stern, got all into the boat. But we had hardly left the ship a quarter of an hour, when we saw her founder. My heart seemed dead within me, with fright, horror of mind, and the thoughts of what was yet before me. As it was impossible for the boat to get up with the ship to which she belonged, we endeavoured to reach the shore; and partly by rowing and partly by being driven by the waves, we at last with great difficulty got to land, and walked to Yarmouth.

Had I now had the sense to return home, my father would have received me with tenderness; but a weak and foolish shame opposed all thoughts of it. I remained some time in doubt what course to take, but having money in my pocket, I travelled to London by land.

On my arrival in that city, I happily contracted an acquaintance with the master of a ship who had been on the coast of Guinea: taking a fancy to me, he told me, that if I would go the voyage with him, I should be at no expense; and if I would carry any thing with me, I should have the advantage of trading for myself. Encouraged by this offer, by the assistance of some of my relations, with whom I still corresponded, I raised forty

pounds, which I laid out in such toys and trifles, as he directed me to buy. But though in this voyage I was continually sick; yet under my worthy friend, I got a competent knowledge of the mathematics, and the rules of navigation; learned how to keep an account of the ship’s course, and to take an observation: this voyage made me both a sailor and a merchant; for I brought home five pounds nine ounces of gold dust for my adventure, which yielded me in London, at my return, almost £300.

I was now set up for a Guinea trader; but my friend, to my great misfortune, dying soon after his arrival, I resolved to go the same voyage again, and having left £200 in the hands of my friend’s widow, I embarked in the same vessel. This was one of the most unhappy voyages that ever man made; for as we were steering between the Canary islands and the Afriean shore, we were surprised in the grey of the morning hy a Moorish rover of Salee, who gave ehase to us, with all the sail she could make. Finding that the pirate gained upon us, and would eertainly eome up with us in a few hours, we prepared to fight; our ship having twelve guns, and the pirate eighteen. About three in the afternoon he came up with us, and a very smart engagement ensued; but after having twice cleared the decks of the Moors, and lost three of our men, and had eight wounded, we were obliged to submit, and we were all earried prisoners into Salec, a port belonging to the Moors.

I was kept by the captain of the rover as his own prize, and made his slave.

My master having the long-hoat of our English ship, had a little state room or cabin built in the middle of it, like a barge, with a place hehind it to steer, and haul home the mainsheet, and another hefore, for a hand or two to staud and work tho sails. In this pleasure boat we frequently went out a-fishing; and one day he had appointed to go out with two or threo Moors of distinction, and had therefore sent over night a larger store of provision than usual, and ordered me to get ready two or three fusces with powder and shot, which were on board his ship, for that they designed to have sport at fowling as well as fishing. But in the morning he came on board, telling me that his guest had deelined going, and ordered me, with the man and boy, to sail out with the hoat, and catch somo fish, for his friends were to sup with him.

At this moment tho hopes of deliverance darted into my thoughts; every thing being prepared, we sailed out of tho port to fish; hut purposely catching none, I told Muley that this would not do, aud that we must stand farther off, whieh he agreeing to, we set the sails, and I having the helm, ran tho boat out near a league farther, and then brought her to, as if I would fish; when giving the hoy the helm, I stepped forward, and stooping behind the Moor, took him by surprise, and tossed him overboard into the sea; he arose immediately, for ho swam like a cork, and called to me to take him in; but fetching out one of the fowling pieces, I presented it at him, and told him, that if he came near the boat, I would shoot him, so he turned about and swam towards the land; and as he was an excellent swimmer, I made no doubt but he reached the shore with ease.

When he was gone, I turned to the boy, whom they called Xury, and said to him, “Xury, if you will be faithful to me, I will make you a great man: but if you will not stroke your face to be true to me,” (that is, swear by Mahomet and his

father's beard,) “I must throw you into the sea too.” The boy smiled in my face, and spoke so innocently, that I eould not mistrust him: he swore to he faithful to me, and go all over the world with me.

While I was in view of Muley, I stood out to sea, but it no sooner grew dark, than I changed my course, and steered to the south, I made such sail, that before the end of the next day, I believe, I was beyond tho Emperor of Morocco’s dominions. Yet so dreadful were my apprehensions of falling again into my master's hands, that I would not stop to go on shore, till I had sailed in that manner five days; and then the wind shifting to the southward, I ventured to come to an anchor at the mouth of a little river.

The principal thing I wanted was fresh water. But though I was no less afraid of the savages than of the wild beasts, our necessities obliged us to land, for we had not a pint. The next morning Xury asked for one of the jars, and said he would go and seek for water. I asked him why he would go. The boy answered with so much affection, that I could not help loving him. “If wild man comes, they will eat me, you go away.” “Well, Xury,” said I, “we will both go, and if the wild men come we will kill them; they shall eat neither of us.”

The boy seeing a low place about a mile up the country, rambled thither; and by-and-by I saw him come running towards me, when, thinking he might be pursued by some savage or frightened by a wild beast, I ran to meet him, but when I came nearer I saw something hanging over his shoulder, which was a ereature he had shot like a hare, and we found it very good meat; but the great joy that Xury came with was to tell me he had found good water, and seen no wild mans. We therefore filled our jars, feasted on our hare, and then set sail.

About ten days after, as I was steering out to sea, in order to double a cape, I had the view of some islands, which I supposed to be those of Cape Verd. I was afraid of venturing so far from the shore, for if I should be taken with a fresh gale of wind, I might never be able to reach again the one or the other. In this dilemma I sat down in the cabin, when on a sudden Xury cried out in a fright, “Master! Master! a ship,” foolishly imagining that it was his master’s ship, come so far in pursuit for us: I jumped out of the cabin, and saw that it was a Portuguese vessel, and instantly stretched out to sea with all the sail I could make; they perceived me by the help of their glasses, and shortened sail to let me come up. A Scots sailor on board called to me, and I answered that I had made my escape from tho Moors at Salee. They very kindly took me in and all my goods.

We had a very good voyage to the Brazils, and arrived at All Saint’s Bay, in about twenty-two days. The captain recommended me to an honest man who had a plantation, with whom I lived till I had learnt the manner of planting and making sugar, after which I purchased a piece of land, and became a planter. I had lived here about four years, and had contracted an acquaintance among several merchants. I had frequently talked to them of the method of purchasing negroes on the Coast of Guinea, and they being pleased with the project, easily prevailed on me to make a voyage for that purpose. We fitted out a ship of about 120 tons burden, which carried six guns and fourteen men, besides the master, his boy, and myself.

In this vessel I set sail. We had very good weather for about twelve days; but soon after we had crossed the line, a violent hurricane drove us quite out of our reckoning, and for many days together not any in the ship expected to save their lives. In this distress, one of our men early one morning cried out, “Land!” and we had no sooner run out of the cabin, in hopes of seeing where we were, but the ship struck upon a shoal. It is not easy to conceive our consternation; for as

the rage of the sea was great, we supposed that the ship would, in a few minutes, break to pieees. We had a boat on board, whieh the mate laid hold of, and with the help of the rest of the men flung her over the ship’s side, and getting all into her, committed ourselves to God’s mercy. We steered towards land, but after we had rowed, or rather been driven about a league and a half, a wave, mountain high, came rolling astern of us with such fury, that it overset the boat at once, and separated us from one another. This wave carried me a vast way towards the shore, and having spent itself, went back, and left me upon the land almost dry, but half dead. I stood still a few moments to recover breath, till the waters went from me, and then took to my heels; and with all the strength I had left me, ran towards the shore. I got to the main land, clambered up the clifts of the shore, and sat me down upon the grass. Having rested myself, I walked along the shore in seareh of fresh water: having found some and quenched my thirst, I put some tobaceo in my mouth, to prevent hunger, and having climbed a tree, rested myself till morning.

I then found the sea ealm, and the tide ebbed so far out, that I eould come within a quarter of a mile of the ship. The weather being extremely hot, I pulled off my elothes, and took to tho water; but when I came to the ship, I found no means of getting on board, she lying so high, that I could find nothing within my reach: I swam round her twice; at last observing a small piece of rope hanging down, I got hold of it, and got into the foreeastle. Here I found that the ship was bulged, and a great deal of water in the hold; but to my great joy I saw that all the ship’s provisions were dry, and being well disposed to eat, I went into the bread room, and slipped on a waistcoat, filled my pockets with biseuits, and eat as I went about other things; I also found some rum in the great cabin, of which I took a dram.

As I found several spare yards, I let them down with ropes by the ship’s sides, and going down to them, tied them together, and made a raft, plaeing several pieces of plank upon them erossway, and laid upon it all the pieees of board that came to hand. I next emptied three of the seamen’s chests: then lowered them down upon the raft, and filled them with bread, some dried goat’s flesh, and three Duteh cheeses. I found several eases of bottles, in which were some cordial waters, and about five or six gallons of arrack; these I stowed by themselves, thero being no room for them in the ehests. I also let down the carpenter’s ehest, which was worth more to me than a ship load of gold. I next found two good fowling-pieces, and two pistols, with some powder horns, two barrels of powder, and two old rusty swords, all of which I placed on the raft, and with this invaluable eargo resolved to put to sea.

My raft went very well, and with it I entered a creek, where I thrust it on a flat piece of ground, over which the tide flowed, and there fastened it by stieking a broken oar into the ground. Thus I stayed till the water ebbed, when I placed my cargo safe on land.

The next day I resolved to make a second voyage. My raft being too unwieldy, I swam to the ship, and made another, on

which I placed two or three bags of nails and spikes, some hatchets, a grindstone, two or three iron erows, seven muskets, and another fowling picee, two barrels of powder, a large bag of small shot, and all the men’s clothes I could find, a square foretopsail, a hammock and some bedding; all of which I brought safe to land.

I now went to work to make a little hut with the sails and some poles, which I cut for that purpose; and into it I brought every thing that I knew would spoil either with the sun or rain: I piled all the empty chests and easks in a circle round the hut to fortify it from any sudden attempt from man or beast; I blocked up the door with boards; and spreading one of the beds upon the ground, laying my two pistols just at my head, and my gun by me, I went to bed, and slept very quietly all night.

Every day at low water I went on board, and brought away something. On my seventh voyage I brought away a great hogshead of bread, three large runlets of rum, a box of fine sugar, and a barrel of fine flour.

I had been thirteen days on shore, and had been eleven times on board the ship, but in one of these excursions I had the misfortune to overset my raft; but it being in shoal water, and the things being chiefly heavy, I recovered many of them when the tide was out. Indeed, had the calm weather continued, I believe I should havo brought away the wholo ship, piece by piece; but preparing the twelfth time to go on board, I found the wind began to rise; however, at low water I went; rummaging the cabin, I discovered a locker with drawers in it, in one of which I found two or three razors and a pair of large scissors, with ten or a dozen good knives and forks: and in another about thirty-six pounds in value of gold and silver coin. At the sight of this money I smiled to myself, and said, “O drug! what art thou good for? One of these knives is worth all this heap; I have no manner of use for thee: e’en remain where thou art, and go to the bottom.” However, upon second thoughts, I took it away, and wrapping it all in a piece of canvas, began to think of making another raft; but while I was preparing it, the wind began to rise, and blow off shore: I then found that it was time to be gone, lest I should not be able to reach the shore; accordingly I let myself down into the water, and swam to land, which I performed with great difficulty, from the weight of things I had about me, and the roughness of the water.

It blew very hard all night, and in the morning when I looked out, no more ship was to be seen. I now went in search of a place where I might fix my dwelling, endeavouring to chooso one where I might have the advantage of a healthy situation, fresh water, and security from being surprised by man or beast. I found a little plain on the side of a rising hill, which was there as steep as the side of a house, so that nothing could come down to me from the top. On the side of this rock was a hollow place, like the entrance of a cave, before which I resolved to fix my tent. This plain was not above 100 yards broad, and twice as long, descending to the sea.

Before I set up my tent, I drew a half eircle before the hollow place, which extended twenty yards; and in this half circle pitched two rows of strong stakes, driving them into the ground like piles. Then I took the pieces of eable I had cut in the ship, and laid them in rows one upon another at the top; and this fence was so strong, that neither man nor beast could well enter it. Tho entrance I made by a short ladder to go over the top, which when I was in I lifted over after me. Into this fence, I by degrees carried all my riches, all my provisions, ammunition and stores, and made me a large tent to secure myself and them from the weather. When I had done this, I began to work my way into the rock, laying all the earth and stones I dug out within my fence, in the manner of a terrace; and thus I had a cave just behind my hut.

But before the above works were eompleted, a sudden storm of thunder and lightning filled me with the greatest terror; for my powder suddenly darted into my mind, and my heart sunk within me at the thought that at one blast it might all be destroyed; on which not only my defence, but the providing of

my food entirely depended. No sooner was the storm over, than I laid aside every other work to make boxes and bags, in order to separate my powder, and put them in holes up and down the rocks, in such a manner, that ono parcel could not fire another.

While all this was doing, I walked out at least once every day with my gun, to see if I could kill any thing fit for food, and to acquaint myself with what the island produced. The first time I went out, I had the pleasure to find that there were goats in the island, but they were so shy, that it was the most difficult thing in the world to come up with them; but observing that they did not easily see objects above them, I killed them by climbing the rocks, and shooting at those in the valley.

After I had been about ten or twelve days on shore, it came into my thoughts, that I should lose my reckoning of time, and should not be able to distlnguish the Sundays from the working days. To prevent this, I set up a large square post on the shore where I first landed, and cut upon it with a knife, “I came on shore here the 30th of September, 1659, R. C.” Upon the sides I cut every day a noteh, and every seventh noteh was as long again as the rest, and every first day of the month as long again as that long one, and thus I kept my weekly, monthly, and yearly reckoning.

I had got from the ship some pens, ink, and paper; some mathematical instruments, and three good Bibles, with several other books, which I carefully secured. I also brought to shore with me two cats, and a dog swam on shore, which was a trusty servant to me many years; nay, he was so good a companion to me, that I was at a loss for nothing that ho could fetch me; and he only wanted power of speech to become a most agreeable friend.

When my habitation was finished, I found it far too small to contain my moveables, I had hardly room to turn myself, so I set about enlarging my cave, and laboured till I had worked sideways into the rock farther than my outside pale, and hewing a way through, made a back door to my store-house. I then made mo a table and chair, which were great conveniences; shelved one side of my cave, and kuocked up pieces of wood into the rock, to hang my things on. When my cave was set to rights, it looked like a general magazine of all necessary things.

In tho rummaging among my things, I found a little bag with some husks of corn in it; and wanting it, I shook it out by the side of my fortifieation. This was just before somo heavy rain; and about a month afterwards, I saw green stalks shooting out of the ground; but how great was my astonishment, when some time after I saw about ten or twelve ears of barley, and a few stalks of riee: these were worth more than fifty times their weight in gold; and I carefully preserved them for seed.

When I had been about a year in the island, I was taken extremely ill. This fit of illness proved a violent ague, which made me so weak, I could hardly carry my gun. One night as I was ruminating on my sad eondition, expecting the return of my fit, it oeeurred to my thoughts, that the Brazilians took no physic but tobacco; and I went, directed by Heaven no doubt, to search for some in the chest; and there I found a Bible! I brought that and the tobacco to my table; some I burnt in a pan, holding my head over the fume, and some I chewed. I opened my book, and the first words on which I cast my eyes were, “Call upon me in the day of trouble, and I will deliver thee.” The words struck me; but I eould read no more, for the tobaeeo made me exeessively sleepy. I thereforo went to bed, and falling into a sound sleep, I believe I slept two days; and awoke perfectly recovered.

I now took a survey of the island; and at about two miles distant from my habitation, found some fine savannahs, and a little further a variety of fruit, melons upon the ground, and vines covered with clusters of grapes. I carried some grapes and a few limes back with me; but the grapes were spoiled before I got home. I went the next day and gathered a large quantity of grapes and hung them upon the out branches of the trees, that they might cure and dry in the sun, and they soon became fine raisins.

The rainy and dry seasons now appeared quite regular to me. I dug a piece of ground as well as I could, with a wooden spade of my own making, and began to sow my grain, and my crop amounted to about half a peck of each kind.

In one of the dry seasons I took another ramble, armed with my gun and a hatchet, and guarded by my faithful dog. When I had passed the valley in which stood my bower, I camo within view of the sea; and it being a clear day, I plainly discovered land; but whether island or continent I could not tell; I guessed that it could not be less than twenty leagues off. I imagined it was some savage coast, and such indeed it proved. In this journey I caught a parrot, having knocked it down with a stick, brought it home with me, and taught it to speak.

In another of my journies, my dog seized a young kid, and I saved it alive, highly pleased with the hopes of having a breed of tame goats; and it soon became one of my domestics, and would never leave me.

My thoughts often ran upon the land I had seen; and I began to make myself a canoe. I felled a great cedar, but when the impossibility of launching this heavy thing camo into my mind, I gave myself this foolish answer, “Let mo but once make it, and I warrant I’ll get it along when it is done.” But all my devices to get it into the water failed me, and I therefore gave it over. I also made an umbrella, which I could shut up and take abroad with me, which secured me from the heat and the rain.

I now built a small boat, intending to go round my little kingdom; but after being at sea three days and nights, and nearly losing my life I got safely to land; and on the fourth day, almost dead with fatigue, I at length arrived at my little castle. I got over the fence, and laid mo down to sleep; but judge my surprise, when I waked by a voice calling me by the name, “Robin, Robin Crusoe, where are you? where have you been?” I was so dead asleep at first, that I thought I dreamt somebody spoke to me; but as the voice continued to repeat “Robin Crusoe,” I awaked dreadfully frightened; but no sooner were my eyes open, than I saw Poll sitting on a hedge, and immediately knew that it was he that spoke to me. I immediately called him, and the poor creature came as he used to do, and sat on my thumb, crying, “Poor Robin Crusoe,” as if glad to see me.

It would have made a Stoic smile to see me and my family sit down to dinner. There was my majesty all alone like a king, attended with my servants. Poll, my favourite, was the only one permitted to talk to me. My dog was grown very old sat always at my right hand, and my two cats, one on one side of the table, and the other on the other, expecting now and then a bit from my hand, as a mark of special favour.

I had at length a great mind to go to the point of the island to see how the shore lay, and resolved to travel thither by land. And now reader, I will give you a short sketch of the figure I made. I had a great high shapeless cap, made of a goat’s skin, a jacket with the skirts coming down to the middle of my thighs, and a pair of open knee’d breeches of the same, with the goat's hair hanging to the middle of my legs. Stockings and shoes I had none; but I had a pair of somethings, I scarce knew what to call them, to flap over my legs like spatterdashes, but of a most barbarous shape; and so indeed were the most of my clothes. My beard was cut short, except what grew on my upper lip, which I had trimmed into a pair of large Mahometan whiskers. But as for my figure, I had so few to observe me, that it was no manner of consequence.

In this figure I went my new journey, and was out five or six days. I was exccedingly surprised with the print of a man’s naked foot on the shore, which was plainly to be seen in the sand. I listened, I eould hear nothing, I went upon a rising ground to look farther, hut I could see only that one impression. There was plainly a foot, toes, heel, and every part very distinct. I hurried homo to my fortifications, looking hehind me every two or three steps, and fancying every tree, bush, and stump, to he a man. I had no sleep that night, but my terror gradually wore off; however, I strengthened my fortifieation, and planted a numbcr of stakes on the outside of my wall, which growing, bccame a thick grove.

After having secured my habitation in the strongest manner possible, I sought for a place of security for my live goats; and at length found a piece of ground almost inaccessihle hy nature; and then removed the she-goats and two he-goats into it.

After I had thus sccured one part of my live stock, I rambled more to the western point of the island than I had ever done before. I was prescntly eonvinced that the seeing the print of a man's foot was not such a strange thing in the island, as I had imagined, for on my approaching the shore, I was perfeetly eonfounded; nor is it possible to express the horror I felt at sccing the shore spread with skulls, hands, and feet, and other bones of human bodies; and partieularly a plaee, whcre, as I supposed, there had been a fire made, and a eircle dug in the earth for tho savage wretches to sit down to their inhuman feasts. I turned my faee from the horrid spcctacle, and left the placo as soon as possible.

Some time after, in tho midst of a very stormy night, I was startled at the firing of a gun: I hastened up to tho top of my hill, and heard another. I imagined that these were the signals of a ship in distress; and such it proved, as I discovered the next day. I eannot explain the emotion I felt at the sight of this wreck. O that there had been hut one saved! cried I, that I might have had one companion — one fellow creature to have spoken to, and have comforted in his affliction!

One morning very early, I clambered up my hill, and discovered savages landing from five canoes. I soon after saw two miserable wretehes dragged out of the boats; one of whom was immediately knocked down; but the other starting from them, ran with ineredible swiftness towards me. I was frightened when I saw him come my way, imagining he would be followed by the whole hody; however, I kept my station, and quite lost my apprehensions when I found but three followed him. I hastily fetched my gun; and having a short cut down the hill, I clapped myself in the way between the pursuers and the pursued, crying aloud to him that fled, and beckoning then my hand for him to stop: then rushing at once upon the foremost, knocked him down with the stock of my piece, and then shot him dead. The poor savage who had fled was so terrified at the noise of my gun, that he stood stock still, but seemed rather inclined to fly than to come towards me. However, when I gave him signs of encouragement, he came nearer,

kneeling down every ten or twelve steps; on his coming close again, he laid his head upon the ground, and placed my foot upon it.

He was a well-made handsome fellow, of about twenty-six years of age, of an olive coloured complexion, with long black hair. He had a small nose, that was not flat; and fine teeth, as white as ivory. After he had slept about half-an-hour, he awaked again, and came running to me in the enclosure just by, where I had been milking my goats; then falling down again, he laid his head flat upon the ground, and set my other foot upon it, as before; and after this made all possible signs of thankfulness, subjection, and submission. I began to speak to him, and to teach him to speak to me; and first I made him know that his name should be Friday, which was the day whereon I saved his life. I taught him to say Master, and let him know that was to be my name. The next day I gave him clothes, at which he seemed pleased.

Having now more courage, and consequently more curiosity, I took my man Friday with me, giving him the sword in his hand, with his bow and arrow at his back, which I found he could use very dexterously. I also gave him a gun to carry; and taking two for myself, away we marched to the place where his enemies had been. When I came there my blood ran cold in my veins; the place was covered with human bones, and the ground dyed with blood; great pieces of flesh were left here and there, half eateu, mangled, and scorched. I saw three skulls, five hands, and the bones of three or four legs and feet; and Friday, by his signs, made me understand that they brought over four prisoners to feast upon; that three of them were eaten up, and he, pointing to himself, was the fourth; and that they had been conquered, and taken prisoners in war. The next day I made a little tent on the outside of my fortification, and at night took in my ladder, that he might not be able to get at me while I slept. But there was no need of this precaution, for never man had a more faithful servant; he had the same affection for me as a child has for a father: and I dare say he would have sacrificed his life to save mine.

I took him out with me one morning to the woods, in order to take a kid from my herd; but as I was going, I saw a she-goat lying down in the shade, and two young kids sitting by her: when making signs to Friday not to stir, I shot one of the kids. Poor Friday, who had at a distance seen me kill the savage his enemy, but did not see how it was done, trembled, and looked so amazed, that I thought he would have sunk down: he did not see the kid I had shot, but ripped up his waiscoat to feel if he was not wounded, and thought I was resolved to kill him. But taking him by the hand, I laughed at him; and pointing to the kid I had killed, beckoned him to run and fetch it, which he did.

The next day I sent him to beat out some corn, and sift it; and in a little time Friday was able to do all the work for me, as well as I could do it myself. In short, this was the pleasantest year I had led upon the island: for as my man began to talk pretty well, I had some use for my tongue again.

I was now entered into the twenty-seventh year of my captivity, and intended soon to sail, when one morning I bid Friday go to the sea-shore to see if he eould find a turtle; but ho had not long been gone, when he came running back, and cried, “O Master! O Master! O sorrow! O bad!” “What’s the matter, Friday?” said I. “O yonder, there,” said he, “one, two, three; canoe! one, two, three! ” “Well, Friday,” said I, “do not be frightened.”

I then took my perspective glass, and went up the side of the hill, and saw twenty-ono savages, three prisoners, and three canoes. I bid him see what they were doing: he did so, and told me, that they were all about the fire, eating the flesh of one of their prisoners; and that a bearded man lay bound upon the sand, whom he said they would kill next.

I had not a moment to lose, for two were stooped down to untie the Christian, in order to murder him. “Now,” said I, “Friday, do as you see me do. I laid the muskets down, and took one, and then we both fired. Three were killed, and five wounded. The rest jumped up immediately on their feet, but they knew not where to run.

I resolved to pursue them, and ran to the canoe, calling to Friday to follow me; but I was no sooner in the canoe, than I found another poor creature lie there alive, bound hand and foot. I immediately cut the twisted flags; and seeing that he had been bound so tight, that he was almost dead, I gave him a dram, and ordered Friday to tell him of his deliverance; but when the poor fellow looked in his face, and heard him speak, it would have moved any one to tears, to have seen how he kissed, embraced, hugged him, cried, danced, sung, and then cried again. It was some time before I could make him tell me what was the matter; but when he came a little to himself, he said he was his own dear father. He then sat down by him, held the old man's head close to his bosom, and chafed his arms and ancles, which were stiff with binding.

The Spaniard having expressed to me the utmost gratitude for his deliverance, gave me an account of his shipwreck, and the situation of his companions; and it was resolved that Friday’s father and the Spaniard, should go in the boat to fetch them over.

About eight days after they were gone, Friday wakened mo one morning, by crying out, “Master, they are come!” I dressed, and hastened to the top of the hill, and plainly discovered an English ship lying at anchor.

They then ran the boat ashore on the beach, and eleven men landed, three of them unarmed; who by their gestures, seemed to be prisoners: and one of them I could perceive using the most passionate gestures of entreaty, affliction, and despair, while the two others, though their grief seemed less extravagant, appeared pleading for mercy.

At this instant I saw a villain lift up his arm to kill one of the prisoners, but he did not strike him. The men having left the prisoners, and gone up into the woods, I went up to them with my man Friday, and said to them, “What are you, gentlemen?” they startled at the noise; but prepared to fly. I then said in English, “Gentleman, perhaps you may have a friend near you, whom you little expect. Tell me your case.’

“I was commander of that ship, (replied one of the prisoners) my men have mutinied against me; and if they do not murder me, they intend to leave me and these two gentlemen ashoro in this dcsolato place; they are but in that thicket, and I tremble for fear they have seen you.” Having concerted matters with the captain, and armed ourselves, we went to the sailors, and the captain reserving his own piece, the two men shot one of the villains dead, and wounded another. He who was wounded cried out for help, and I coming up, gave orders for sparing their lives, on eondition of their being bound hand and feet while they staid in the island.

A little after another boat came. We formed an ambuscade, but one of the principal ringleaders of the mutiny, with two of the crew coming towards us, the captain was so eager that he let fly, killed two on the spot, and the third ran for it. I immediately advanced with my whole army, upon which Will Watkins, one of the ringleaders, called out, “For God’s sake, captain, spare my life.” The captain told him he must lay down his arms at discretion, and trust to the governor’s mercy; upon which they all submitted, and with their assistance, we seized the ship.

Having brought the prisoners before me, I asked them what they had to say in their defenee, telling them I had power to execute them there. They pleaded the captain's promise of mercy. I then told them that I intended to go passenger in the ship, with all my men; but that they could only go as prisoners; observing, however, that they might, if they chose it, stay in the island. This they gladly accepted. The captain returning to the ship, got every thing ready for my reception.

When he was gone, I talked to the men, told them my story, and how I managed all my household business; left a letter for the fifteen Spaniards, and made them promise to treat them in common with themselves. The next day I went on board the ship, taking Friday with me: thus I left the island, after being on it twenty-eight years, and arrived safely in England.


This work was published before January 1, 1929, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

Public domainPublic domainfalsefalse