Page:Journal of a Voyage to Greenland, in the Year 1821.djvu/167

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VOYAGE TO GREENLAND.

tion of the line, occasioned, it was supposed, by its friction against the dorsal fin. Both of them escaped. Another physalis was struck, but dived with such velocity that four hundred and eighty fathoms of line were drawn from the boat in about a minute of time, and the fish was lost by the breaking of the line."


July 10. 
Having requested to be called, whenever any thing worthy of observation should occur, I arose at two o'clock a. m., on being informed that a number of seals were seen about two miles from us, on a floe of ice, and at a considerable distance from the water's edge. Being told there was no hole by which they could escape, I calculated on a good booty, and Went, like Robinson Crusoe, with my two guns, expecting that the double and single barrels, would secure three; I likewise furnished the boat's crew with seal clubs, but on our approach these sagacious animals retreated one by one through a small hole in the ice to the water, before we got within one hundred and fifty yards of them; and left us to hunt about for the ship for four hours, in very great anxiety, as a dense fog which had arisen instantaneously prevented our seeing beyond twenty yards around us. The fog clearing away about eight o'clock, we continued our course to the eastward until two o'clock, when floes of ice determined that we should proceed no further in that direction; we, therefore, sailed to the northward.

In this course a new scene was presented to us;