Page:Journal of a Voyage to Greenland, in the Year 1821.djvu/159

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VOYAGE TO GREENLAND.

hensions for the fate of the Baffin. If these fears were not consolatory, I was cheered by a religious thankfulness to God, that we were yet safe and with health to exert ourselves in case of necessity. To strengthen the general opinion which was formed of the undertaking, the four ships which had been in company kept lying to, not daring to follow. Notwithstanding the terrific nature of this navigation, I afterwards learned that Captain Scoresby did not attempt the enterprise until he had satisfied himself that the motion of the ice was favourable to his wishes, and such as with the prudent measures he had adopted, would, by the blessing of God, ensure our safety.

Among the subjects that in these regions are extremely interesting to the philosopher, one of a particular nature occurred this day, in the extraordinary effect and power of refraction. By phenomenon, the exact representation of vessels at a distance, at which the convexity of the earth would prevent the possibility of their being seen, was presented to us above the horizon in an inverted form. The details of this curious subject will probably be given to the public by the able pen of Captain Scoresby, whose attainments in science so pre-eminently distinguish him; and the result of his observation may therefore be looked for with great interest.

While we were passing between two floes that had formed a neck, and just opened a passage wide enough for the ship to move through, I observed