Page:Journal of a Voyage to Greenland, in the Year 1821.djvu/216

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164

VOYAGE TO GREENLAND.

sunk nearly to the depth of one mile. On bringing it up, the enormous pressure to which it had been subjected was found to have crushed the vessel into the most irregular form, and forced the upper side into the lower. The estimated load of pressure was fifty tons, being equal to a ton upon a square inch.

Having seen several seals of late, many of which I had shot, but lost them, as they sank the moment they were killed, I was induced to try another experiment, particularly on seeing a handsome young one which I was desirous to get; I, therefore, instead of shooting it with a ball through its head, fired a charge of small shot into its nose; it sank as I expected, but soon returned to the surface perfectly stunned, and with ease I thus procured it.


August 6. 
The fog having continued extremely thick all yesterday, and our progress being still interrupted by large floes of ice, which required all possible precaution to avoid, we did not advance far. The great prevalence of foggy weather to which these seas are subject, unquestionably arises, as Captain Scoresby considers, from the damp air near the surface of the sea, being chilled by coming in contact with the ice; and it is singularly curious, that the fog frequently rests on the surface, not far exceeding the height of the ship's upper masts, while the sky above is perfectly clear. Just at mid-day the horizon began to be clear, and the sea stream of ice became visible from the mast-head.