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Cook's Descriptions of PlacesVoyaging Accounts
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Rio de Janeiro


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Rio de Janeiro (continued)

and NNW something more than one League. This brings you the length of the Great Road, and NW and WNW one League more carries you the length of the Ilha dos Cobras which lies before the City. Keep the North side of this Island close on board and Anchor above it in 5 fathom water where you see most convenient before the monestry of Benidictines which stands upon a hill at the NW end of the City: Small Ships and Vessels generaly lay between the Town and the Ilha dos Cobras but in order to get there they must come round the North side of that Island.

I shall now give the best description I can of the different Forts that are erected for the defence of this Bay; the first you meet with coming in from Sea is a Battry of 22 Guns, seated in the bottom of a Sandy Bay which is on the South side of the Sugr Loafe, and can be designed for no other use than to hinder an Enemy from landing in that Vally from whence I suppose they may march up to the town, or round by the West side of the Sugar Loafe to attack the Forts that are on that side of the entrance into the Bay, the first of which is seated under the foot of the Sugar Loafe on a low isthmus which Joines the peninsula or point of the Bay with the land of the Sugar Loafe, it appears to be a square of Stone Work, without a ditch, with Bastions and furnished with cannon. A little within this Fort are 2 Battries of 5 or 6 Guns each, they are design'd to play upon Shipping but nithir these Batterys or the Fort are out of the reach of a Ships Cannon. Hard by these batteries stands Fort Lozio it is an erregular Hexagon built of Stone upon a small rock standing at the west entrance into the Bay and is surrounded on all sides by the sea. It is mounted with 14 or 15 Guns which are place'd so as to play upon Shipping going in and out of the harbour, there is only one way to go into it which is by steps leading up to a Sally port on the NW side. Opposite this is the Fort of Santo Cruz built upon a low rocky point that forms the East entrance of the Bay, it hath the appearence of a regular fortification of stone work built upon the Slope of the rock on which account there are in some places two tier of guns, it hath no ditch but on the land side where it is cut out of the rock, in every other part the sea washes up to its walls, it seems every where to be well mounted with cannon, except on the land side where none are wanting, because they could be of no use the land being so very high above it; Yet after all neither this Fort nor those on the opposite shoar ^do not appear to be of any great strength even againest shipping for which they are wholy designed being the key to this Bay. Ships They lay low and Ships may come so near as to have them intirely within the reach of their guns, but it would require five or Six sail of the Line to insure Success. Between two and three Miles within the entrance of the Bay, on the west side is the Isle Borghleone upon the East point of which is erected a Battery of Stone and Mounted with 17 pieces of Cannon, besides this on the highest


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© Transcribed from National Library of Australia Manuscript 1 page 21, 2004
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