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Voyages in the Southern Hemisphere, Vol. IVoyaging Accounts
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Streight of Magellan to the Islands of Disappointment


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Streight of Magellan to the Islands of Disappointment (continued)

to which there was a fine fall of fresh water; but near the north point, he said, he could find no anchorage. The boats brought off a great quantity of very fine fish, which they had caught with hook and line near the shore; and as soon as we had taken them on board, which was late in the afternoon, we made sail, and worked to windward in the night.

At seven o’clock in the morning, we anchored with the small bower, on the bank which the boats had discovered, in twenty-four fathom, with black sandy ground. The extream points bore from S. to N.W. and the fall of water bore S.S.W. distant about a mile from the ship’s station. This part of the island lies north and south, and is about four miles long: the soundings are very regular, from twenty to fifteen fathom, within two cables’ length of the shore. Soon after we were come to an anchor, I sent out the boats to endeavour to get some wood and water, but as I observed the shore to be rocky, and a surf to break with great violence upon it, I ordered all the men to put on cork jackets, which had been sent with us to be made use of upon such occasions. By the help of these jackets, which not only assisted the men in swimming, but prevented their being bruised against the rocks, we got off a considerable quantity of water and wood, which, without such assistance, we could not have done: there was, however, another species of danger here, against which cork jackets afforded no defence, for the sea abounded with sharks of an enormous size, which, when they saw a man in the water, would dart into the very surf to seize him: our people, however, happily escaped them, though they were many times very near: one of them, which was upwards of twenty feet long, came close to one of the boats that was watering, and having seized a large seal, instantly devoured it at one mouthful; and I myself saw another

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© Derived from Volume I of the London 1773 Edition: National Library of Australia call no. FERG 7243, page 87, 2004
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