Once a Week (magazine)/Series 1/Volume 8/Mawgan of Melluach, the Cornish wrecker


Note.—Mawgan, a well-known wrecker, occupied a hut, about a hundred years agone, at Melluach, the Vale of the Lark, four miles south of Bude. Among other crimes, it is said that he once buried the captain of a wrecked vessel, whom he found exhausted on the beach, alive. At the death of the old man, it was told that a vessel came down channel and lay-to off Melluach, in a tremendous sea. At Mawgan’s last gasp, the doom-ship went to sea suddenly against the wind, and was seen no more.


’Twas a fierce night when old Mawgan died!
Men shudder’d to hear the rolling tide:
The wreckers fled far from the awful shore,—
They had heard strange voices amid the roar!


Out with the boat there!” some one cried;
Will he never come? we shall lose the tide:
His berth is trim, and his cabin stored;
He’s a weary long time coming on board!”


The old man struggled, and clutch’d the bed,
He knew the words that the voices said;
Wildly he yell’d, as his eyes grew dim,
He was dead! he was dead! when I buried him!”

Death of Mawgan of Melluach.png
The Cornish Wrecker’s Hut.


Hark yet again to the devilish roar!
He was nimbler once with a ship on shore;
Come, come, old man! ’tis a vain delay!
We shall make the offing by break of day!”


Hard was the struggle, but at the last,
With a stormy pang, old Mawgan pass’d;
And away, away! beneath their sight,
Gleam’d the Red Sail at pitch of night

R. S. H.