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THE INFIDEL S TEST.--In the United States of America infidelity found an active champion in the well-known Colonel Allen, who made an open profession of his dis belief in revealed religion. It happened that a daughter of the Colonel's, to whom he was much attached, fell sick During the progress of her illness, Dr. Elliot was one day dining with the Colonel, and after dinner, having adjourned to the Colonel's library, some infidel and deistical publi cations were introduced by the Colonel, to the Doctor's notice. While they were occupied in looking at them, a servant came to announce to the Colonel, that an alarming change had taken place in his daughter, and that his presence was required in her bed-room. Thither he went accompanied by Dr. Elliot. As he approached her bedside, she took his hand and said, "Father! I feel that my end is drawing near. Tell me, I entreat you, am I to believe what you have taught me, or what I have learnt from my mother." Her mother was a sound and sincere Christian, and had spared no opportunity of instilling Christian truths into the mind of her child. The father paused for a moment; he fixed his eyes on his dying child; his countenance changed; his frame was observed to be convulsed to its very centre; while his quivering lips could scarce give utterance to the words, "Believe, my child! what your mother has taught you!" The struggle was too great; the conflict between the pride of human reason, and the swelling of parental affection in the heart, was more than he could bear, and even over his stubborn mind, the truth prevailed.

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in a curious manner the roots of the plantain, in his grass-walks with their upper mandible, which is much shorter than their lower, they bored under the plant, and so ate off the root upwards, leaving the

tuft of leaves on the surface untouched.

THE HEDGE-HOG, OR URCHIN.

We have dwelt the longer on the habits of this mild, timid, and in many respects very useful race of animals, because an ignorance of their real mode of living has led to the unnecessary destruction of many of them, and to much wanton cruelty being practised towards them. In many parishes in England, overseers, still under an ignorant prejudice, give a premium on all Hedge-hogs brought to them. The Hedge-hog has been accused of sucking the milk from cows, which, as Pennant justly observes, from the smallness of its mouth, is impossible to be true.. It has been supposed, too, that it ascends trees, and eats the fruit; but those who have had them in their gardens, and watched them closely, have never had cause to suppose such to be the fact. The Hedgehog is sometimes introduced into houses, to destroy beetles; and has been so far tamed as to turn a spit, by means of a small wheel, and to answer to its name. By the Calmuc Tartars it is much esteemed, and kept in a domesticated state in their huts, instead of cats, for the purpose of driving away vermin; but its smell is so powerful and disgusting, as to render it an unpleasant inmate in a house.

Hedge-hogs live in pairs, and the females usually produce four or five young in the spring: their nest is large, and composed chiefly of moss and grass.

The flesh is often eaten by gipsies and tramps, who skin the animal before they dress it. Those who have tasted it describe it as delicate, and of a good flavour. Formerly, the skin of the Hedge-hog was employed instead of a brush, for clothes, and was used in France in the dressing of hemp. The farmers, on some parts of the Continent, fix the skin of a Hedge-hog on the muzzle of a calf that they wish

to wean.

Most nocturnal animals, from their habits being less known than those which move about in the daytime, were, in times less enlightened than the present age, the subjects of many strange and superstitious stories; and parts of them were often believed to possess medicinal virtues the most ridiculous and improbable that it was possible to imagine. Dr. Shaw mentions two curious absurdities of this kind, in regard to the Hedge-hog. "According to Albertus Magnus, a very ancient writer, the right eye of a Hedge-hog, fried in oil, kept in a brass vessel, and used as an ointment to the eyes, will enable a person to see as well by night as by day! And Pliny affirms that its gall, mixed with the brain of a bat, is a good application for the removal of superfluous hairs." Of such worthless applications as these did a great part of the medical art in former times consist! T.

THE object of a good and wise man, in this transitory state of existence, should be to fit himself for a better, by controlling the unworthy propensities of his nature, and improving all its better aspirations; to do his duty, first to his family, then to his neighbours, lastly to his country and his kind; to promote the welfare and happiness of those, who are in any degree dependent upon him, or whom he has the meanest thing that lives; to encourage, as far as he may means of assisting, and never wantonly to injure the have the power, whatever is useful and ornamental in society, whatever tends to refine and elevate humanity; to store his mind with such knowledge as it is fitted to receive, and he is able to attain; and so to employ the talents committed to his charge, that when the account is required, he may hope to have his stewardship approved. It should not seem difficult to do this: for nothing can be more evident than that men are and must be happy, in proportion as their lives are conformed to such a scheme of Divine philosophy-SOUTHEY.

ANNIVERSARIES IN DECEMBER.
MONDAY, 2nd.

1796 Mungo Park departed from Pisania, on the River Gambia, to
pursue his researches in the interior of Africa.
1804 Napoleon crowned Emperor of the French.
TUESDAY, 3rd.
1823 Belzoni died at Gato, on his road to Timbuctoo.
WEDNESDAY, 4th.

1722 Three hundred captives, redeemed from slavery in Africa, returned thanks in St. Paul's Cathedral, for their deliverance from captivity. 1755 The Eddystone Lighthouse nearly consumed by fire. THURSDAY, 5th.

1808 Dr. Hawes, inventor of the method of restoring suspended animation adopted by the Humane Society, died. FRIDAY, 6th.

ST. NICHOLAS, BISHOP.-This holy person lived in the time of Constantine, and was highly reverenced by him, and made head of the such marvellous instances of his early conformity to the observances church, or Bishop of Myra. The legends of St. Nicholas relate of the Roman Church, as entitled him to the appellation of the Boy-Bishop. The choice of his representative in every cathedral church in this country continued till the reign of Henry VIII., and in many, large provision of money and goods was made for the annual observance of the festival of the Boy-Bishop, which lasted from this day until Innocents' Day, during which the utmost misrule and mockery of the most solemn rites was practised and enjoined. St. Nicholas was also the Patron of Sailors, and most of the churches in this island, situated on the coast, are dedicated to him. 1670 Henry Jenkins, a native of Yorkshire, died at the age of 169. 1711 Mrs. Jean Scrimshawe died, at the age of 127. SATURDAY, 7th.

1683 Algernon Sydney beheaded on Tower-hill.

SUNDAY, 8th.
SECOND SUNDAY IN ADVENT.

1512 Mary Queen of Scots born at Linlithgow

LONDON:

JOHN WILLIAM PARKER, WEST STRAND. PUBLISHED IN WEEKLY NUMBERS, PRICE ONE PENNY, AND IN MONTHLY PARTS PRICE SIXPENCE, AND Sold by all Booksellers and Newsvenders in the Kingdom.

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UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE COMMITTEE OF GENERAL LITERATURE AND EDUCATION,

APPOINTED BY THE SOCIETY FOR PROMOTING CHRISTIAN KNOWLEDGE.

SOME ACCOUNT OF THE ARCTIC REGIONS, AND OF THE VOYAGES UNDERTAKEN FOR THE DISCOVERY OF A NORTH-WEST PASSAGE FROM THE

ATLANTIC TO THE PACIFIC.

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а

THE NORTH WEST PASSAGE.

practicable routes by which such communication is main

tained. The one is, by the southern extremity of the Old The existence of a North-West Passage, or of a navigable World, or the Cape of Good Hope, the other, by the communication between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans southern extremity of the New World, through the round the northern coast of America, is a question which Straits of Magelhaens, or round Cape Horn. They may has exercised the ingenuity of the learned for the last be termed respectively the South-East Passage and the three centuries; and the return of our adventurous country- South-West Passage, from the Atlantic into the Pacific. man Captain Ross, from his renewed efforts to aid in its Each of these passages, however, implies the necessity of determination, has once again created a lively interest upon sailing to the southern end of the Atlantic, before either the subject among all classes. Its object inay be brietly the eastern or the western turning into the Pacific can be explained thus.

reached; and as the chief maritime nations of the world The greater part of the land contained on the surface of are placed much nearer to its northern end, it has occurred our globe, is collected into two great masses; the one of to them, that if they were to sail to the northern instead which is situated in its eastern hemisphere, and is called of the southern extremity, and then turn to the east or to the Old World; the other in its western hemisphere, and the west, they would reach the Pacific much sooner; in termed the New World. The former, which is composed other words, that a North-East Passage (round the northern of the united continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa, coast of Europe and Asia,) or a North-West Passage (round presents one unbroken mass of land, stretching from the the northern shores of America,) would be a much shorter Cape of Good Hope in the south, to the Arctic Sea in the route than the existing South-East or South-West Passage. north. The New World, or the continent of America, But obstacles exist to the accomplishment of either forms a similarly uninterrupted barrier, extending a nearly of these northern passages, which do not exist in the equal length, from the Straits of Magelhaens in the southern routes. The northern shores of both the Old South, to a point yet undetermined in the North. The and the New World are situated in much higher latitudes Atlantic Ocean, is interposed between these two masses, than their southern limits, and are therefore subject to a on one side of the globe, and the Pacific Ocean sepa- much more intense degree of cold; so that while the rates them on the opposite side. Previous to the close waters that bound the latter are at all times open to the of the fifteenth century, it was not known that any seaman, those which encircle the former, are during the communication existed between these oceans; in other greater portion of the year frozen into a vast icy barrier, words, the countries situated on the Atlantic, (including of entirely obstructing all 'navigation. Another circumstance course the principal nations of Europe,) had no maritime also operates to the same effect

. In accomplishing either connexion with those washed by the Pacific, (of which the of the southern passages, the navigator has merely to East Indies forms a part.) There are at present two round a jutting promontory in a high latitude; but in you. III.

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attempting either of the northern routes, he has to pass form an immense rampart, which presents to the mariner a long line of coast extending above 100° or 180° of a sublime spectacle, resembling at a distance whole groups longitude under the same frozen parallel.

of churches, mantling castles, or fleets under full sail. The question of a North-East Passage has long since ceased to excite much interest. It is certain, indeed, that HISTORY TO THE CLOSE OF THE a sea extends from Behring's Strait to the Spitzbergen

EIGHTEENTH CENTURY. Seas; but the passage has never yet been performed, and may be fairly assumed to be impracticable. A North-West The first navigator whose efforts appear to have inspired a Passage would be a much shorter route; but a shorter reasonable hope of finding the North-West Passage, was than all has been suggested, which is termed the North Gaspar de Cortereal, a Portuguese, who, in the year 1500, Polar Passage. It consists in sailing through the Spitz- discovered the country called Labrador. Coasting thence bergen Seas direct into the Polar Basin, or the region to the northward, and reaching the wide opening of Hadimmediately surrounding the North Pole, and emerging son's Strait, he concluded that he had found the so-muchat Behring's Strait; its track thus forming, as it were, the desired passage into the Pacific, which he named the diameter of the circle presented by the northern shores of Strait of Anian. He returned to Portugal and in the Europe and Asia on ihe one side, and those of America following year embarked on a second expedition, with two on the other. We shall now give a brief sketch of the yessels; but having been separated from his consort by various attempts that have been made to effect the remain- bad weather, he was never heard of more. His brother, ing two passages, the North-West and the Polar; remark-Michael de Cortereal, who sailed in quest of him, shared a ing on the obstacles that have frustrated their accomplish- similar fate; and it was only the positive order of the king, ment, and the desiderata yet remaining for that purpose.

Manuel, which restrained a third brother from continuing

the fruitless search. The two Cabotas had previously OBSTACLES TO THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF engaged in the same enterprise; but their efforts had terTHE NORTH-WEST PASSAGE.

minated only in the discovery of Newfoundland.

Cortereal was succeeded by Aubert and Jacques Cartier The difficulties which impede the navigation of the Arctic on the part of France, and by Estevan Gomez on that of Seas, arise, as we have before observed, from the extreme Spain; but all the endeavours of these navigators to discold to which their high latitude exposes them. Owing to cover any opening in the northern coast, that held out the the spherical form of the earth's surface, and the obliquity least hope of a passage in that quarter, were in vain. of its axis, the sun is, for a considerable portion of the About the same period, the idea of a voyage to the year, entirely withdrawn from these regions. Throughout North Pole was first suggested by Master Robert Thorne, this long and dreary night, an intense frost prevails. As of Bristol, who is said to have exhorted King Henry VIII. early as the month of August, snow begins to fall; a rapid “ with very weighty and substantial reasons, to set forth a formation of ice ensues ; along the shores and bays, the discoverie, even to the North Pole." Among other advanfresh water, poured from rivulets, or drained from the tages that were held out as the probable results, was the thawing of former collections of snow, becomes quickly discovery of a shorter passage to China and the East congealed ; the surface of the sea is spread over with ice, Indies: but although an expedition was sent out for this and its waters are firmly bound up into one solid mass. purpose, the proceedings connected with it are scarcely at The gloomy darkness of impenetrable winter now reigns all known. The voyage of The Trinitie and the Minion," throughout; occasionally, indeed, relieved or aggravated, to the north-west, followed in 1536, but without any further by the moon's feeble rays.

success: and between the years 1553 and 1556, Sir Hugh At length the sun reappears; but it is long before his Willoughby, Richard Chancelor, and Stephen Burough, faint and languid beams impart much warmth to the performed three several voyages in quest of a North-East dreary waste. Gradually, however, their power increases; Passage, but could not, on account of immense shoals of the snow begins to melt, the ice slowly dissolves, and the ice, proceed further than the Strait of Weigats. ocean is once again set free. The massy sheet which its Notwithstanding the failure of so many attempts, the surface lately formed is now broken into a thousand fray- belief that America was to be passed somewhere on the ments, of various size and thickness: these, impelled by north-west still remained unimpaired among the merchants the violence of winds and currents, are dispersed in all and navigators of England, and was supported by the directions, sometimes meeting with fearful shock, and writings of the most learned men in the nation. Under the shivering each other into atoms. This disruption of the ice auspices of Queen Elizabeth, Martin Frobisher made three generally happens about the month of June; and a few successive voyages, in 1576, 1577, and 1578; but his proweeks are commonly sufficient to disperse the floating fields. gress was exceedingly small. Yet their promoters were

The sea is at last open, for a short and dubious interval, still satisfied “ of the likelihood of the discovery of the to the pursuits of the adventurous seaman; but the navi- North-West Passage," and they accordingly resolved on a gation is accomplished only with great dilliculty to him, new expedition. The conduct of this was intrusted to the and at the imminent hazard of his being crushed by these celebrated John Davis, who, in 1585, succeeded in passing floating fields of ice. Another obstacle, not less formidable, up the strait, which now bears his name, as high as latitude impedes his progress; namely, the icebergs, or insulated 66° 40', and discovered the inlet called Cumberland Straits mountains of ice, which float like lofty towers upon the He performed two subsequent voyages in the succeeding two ocean, threatening to overwhelm with instant destruction years, in the second of which he stood sixty leagues up the frail bark thai sails beneath. These are formed by the Cumberland Strait. congelation of the fresh water that pours annually into No further attenipt was made, until the commencement the ocean, and are collected along the indented shores and of the seventeenth century, when George Weymouth dein the deep bays enclosed by precipitous rocks. Every parted on an expedition, fitted out at the joint expense of successive year adds to their size, till at length, by the the Muscovy and Turkey Companies ; but his voyage was action of their own accumulated weight, and the under- a complete failure. mining of the sea, the enormous blocks are broken off, and In the years 1605, 1606, and 1607, the King of Denprecipitated into the ocean below. These mountains of mark despatched Henry Hall thre several times, but all hard and perfect ice are probably the gradual production of his attempts were fruitless. many years. Their substance is clear, compact, and solid; As neither the passage by the north-east, nor that by and their tint of a fine green, verging to blue. Its clearness the north-west, seemed now to hold out much hope of is generally interrupted by numerous small air-bubbles ; success, it was resolved again to try the route across the but large pieces may be occasionally obtained, possessing North Pole. Accordingly Henry Hudson, an experienced a degree of purity and transparency, equal to that of the and intrepid seaman, was selected for this enterprise ; and, most beautiful crystal. Captain Scoresby states that, with a in the year 1607, he set sail from England, and stood lump of ice, of by no means regular convexity, used as a directly for the east coast of Greenland, which he reached burning lens, he has frequently burnt wood, fired gunpowder, in latitude 73°, naming the point Hold with Hope ; thence melted lead, and lit the sailors' pipes, to their great astonish- continuing northward, he advanced to about latitude 81°, ment; the ice itself remaining, in the mean while, quite firm when he was compelled by the ice to return. In the foland pellucid. The salt-water ice, on the ot| · hand, is porous, lowing year he was employed, without success, in search of incompact, and only imperfectly transparent; and is an- a North-East Passage; and, in 1609, by the Dutch, in an nually formed and destroyed. The appearance of a nume- expedition of very dubious object. In 1610 he embarked rous collection of icebergs is described as interesting in the on his last and fatal voyage once again to the north-westextreme. Along the western coast of Greenland, they ward. Keeping to the westward, he passed the strait

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which now bears his name; but, soon afterwards, his crew The ill success of this attempt did not cause the hopes mutinied, and, turning him adrift in a boat, abandoned him of discovering a northern navigable communication between to a miserable fate.

the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, to be abandoned. The Sir Thomas Button followed next, in 1612, and, passing Act of Parliament, granting the reward of 20,0001., was through Hudson's Strait, reached the main land of Ame- altered so as to include his Majesty's ships, and to extend rica in latitude 60° 40'. Having wintered, he advanced as the condition of a passage through Hudson's Bay, to that high as latitude 65°, on the east coast of Southampton of every northern passage; and a sum of 50001. was also Island, and returned to England in the summer of 1613. awarded to any ship that approached within one degree of

Robert Bylot, in 1615, proceeded about half a degree | the North Pole. further north, and, in the following year, embarked with In 1776, Lieutenant Pickersgill was sent in the brig Lion, Batlin, to examine the sea lying north and west of Davis' to examine the western shores of Baffin's Bay; but the Strait. In this voyage, one of the most remarkable and result was unsuccessful. important ever accomplished in the same quarter of the In the following year the same vessel was despatched, globe, they traced the west coast of Greenland up Davis' under Lieutenant Walter Young, on a similar service, and Strait, as far as the northern extremity of the sea now also to examine the practicability of a passage into the named after Baffin; then, turning to the westward, they Pacific, in the hope of meeting Captain Cook, who was followed it round, and descended the opposite shores to the expected to be about that time engaged in attempting to south, passing, in their way, several large openings, which pass from the Pacific into the Atlantic; but he returned they neglected to examine, apparently assuming them to without having accomplished any thing, be merely Sounds.

The narrative of Hearne, whose journey down the Luke Fox followed in 1631, and explored Hudson's Bay; Copper-mine River to the Arctic Sea, we have already menand, in 1668, Zachariah Gillam was sent out by Prince tioned, was long regarded with mistrust; but a similar exRupert, to examine the same quarter ; and the results of pedition, undertaken by Alexander Mackenzie, in 1789, in this voyage appear to have led to the formation of the which he descended the river that now bears his name, and Hudson's Bay Company.

reached the Arctic Ocean, considerably to the westward of No further attempts were made on the western coast of the point at which Hearne arrived, served to give a stronger America, until the unfortunate voyage of Knight, Barlow, appearance of truth to this latter traveller's statements, and, and Vaughan, in 1719, on the part of the Hudson's Bay by proving the existence of a sea to the north of America, Company, in search of “the Strait of Anian, in order to to increase the probability of a North-West Passage. But discover golil, &c., to the northward ;" when, of two ships the long and disastrous war which soon afterwards conthat were sent out, neither returned.

vulsed the whole of Europe, directed the skill and resources John Scroggs was sent in search of them in 1722, but of the nation into another channel, and put an effectual he returned without accomplishing any thing of the stop to the progress of northern discovery. smallest note.

In 1737, a similarly unsuccessful attempt was made hy EXPEDITIONS OF CAPTAINS ROSS AND the Hudson's Bay Company, at the suggestion of Mr.

BUCHAN. Arthur Dobbs, who afterwards prevailed on the Government to appropriate two vessels for this service, under the No sooner, however, had peace been restored, than the orders of Captain Middleton, who left England in 1741, and attention of the British Government was again drawn to wintered in Churchill River; and, in the summer of 1742, this long-agitated question. The possibility of effecting a proceeded up Sir Thomas Roe's Welcome to Wager River, North-West Passage, became once more a fruitful source of and sailed round what is called Repulse Bay. The offer by debate, and was discussed with a keenness, and a regard Parliament, in 1743, of a reward of 20,0001. to whomsoever to the results of former experience, in estimating the of His Majesty's subjects should discover a North-West probability of its success, that had rarely been evinced Passage through Hudson's Strait, seemed to evince that the before. The reasons assigned in its favour were many and public opiniga still remained decidedly in favour of its cogent. A perpetual current setting down from the northpracticability. A subscription of 10,0001. was entered ward, along the eastern shores of America and the western into, and two ships were sent out, in 1746, under Captains coast of Greenland, was said to afford a strong presumption, Moor and Smith, who merely, however, ascertained that that between Davis Strait and the Great Polar Basin, there Wager River was a deep bay or inlet.

was an uninterrupted communication. The vast quantities On the failure of this expedition, the public ardour of drift-wood floated down by this current, whose appearseems to have been somewhat dampel; and for nearly ance frequently indicated that it had recently been in a thirty years, no attempt at northern discovery by sea was growing state, and in a warmer climate, and whose submade, either by the government or by private individuals ; stance denoted the produce of milder latitudes, was adduced but, in 1772, Samuel Hearne accomplished a land-journey as another powerful argument to the same effect. A third, from the Prince of Wales's Fort, Hudson's Bay, to the on which equal stress was laid, was derived from the fact, termination of the Copper-mine River, in the Arctic Sea. well known to those engaged in the Greenland fisheries,

About the same time, the question of the practicability that whales which had been harpooned in the Spitzbergen of approaching the North Pole was revived by the Hon. Seas and Davis' Strait, have been caught in the Pacitic Daires Barrington, who presented to the Royal Society a Ocean, on the western coast of America. The general trendseries of papers on the subject, which induced the Presi. ing of the northern coast of that continent, as indicated dent and Council to apply to the Earl of Sandwich, then by the three points then known, Icy Cape, and the mouths First Lord of the Admiralty, to obtain His Majesty's sanc- of the Mackenzie and Copper-mine Rivers; the testimony tion for the fitting out an expedition for that service. The of the native Indian maps; and the occurrence, in Greenproposal meeting with the countenance of his Majesty, land, of a species of heath, which had never been found in two ships, the Race-horse and the Carcase bombs, were America; were all regarded as additional grounds of the equipped accordingly; the former under the orders of same supposition. Captain Constantine Jolin Phipps, (afterwards Lord Mul- The disappearance of a large quantity of ice from the grave,) who was appointed commander of the expedition; Arctic Regions, and the removal of the icy barrier which the latter under those of Captain Skeffington Lutwidge. was supposed to have, for four centuries, blocked up the They sailed from the Nore on the 10th of June, 1773, and eastern coast of Greenland, seemed to present an opportuon the evening of the 27th, reached the latitude of the south nity peculiarly favourable for the resumption of those part of Spitzbergen. On the fifth of July, they fell in with labours which had been interrupted only by the political the main body of the ice, which stretches across from Spitz- disturbances of Europe. It was resolved, therefore, that bergen to Greenland, and commenced looking for an open- two distinct expeditions should be fitted out and despatched; ing by which they might pass through. The ice was the one to proceed up Davis' Strait, for a considerable disexamined, from east to west, for above ten degrees, but tance to the northward, and then, rounding the northwithout success; and Captain Phipps now began to con- east point of the continent of America, to hold a westerly ceive that the ice was one compact impenetrable body." | course, with the view of reaching Behring's Strait; the After repeated further attempts, the ships were beset in other, to proceed in a direction as due north as might be the ice, which soon began to press in fast, being, in many found practicable, through the Spitzbergen Seas, and, in places, forced higher than the main-yard, by the squeezinthe event of finding an open Polar Basin, to pass across together of the pieces. With the assistance of the wind they the Pole, and make for Behring's Strait, also. were at length extricated; and, the season being now far Accordingly, four merchant-ships were hired and comadvanced, they returned home.

missioned for this purpose ; two of which, the Isabella,

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of 385 tons, commanded by Captain John Ross, and the latitude 75° 54', were surprised to observe a party of Alexander, of 252ļ tons, by Lieutenant William Edward Esquimaux approaching the ships over the ice, as they Parry, were destined for the North-West Passage; and the had passed the limit of what had been usually considered remaining two, the Dorothea, of 382 tons, commanded by the inhabited part of Greenland. A parley was with Captain David Buchan, and the Trent, of 2494 tons, by difficulty effected ; and an opportunity of closer exaLieutenant John Franklin, for the Polar route.

mination was afforded. Such was the ignorance of these These vessels, having been most completely repaired and savage beings, that they conceived themselves to be the strengthened, so as to enable them the better to resist the only human inhabitants on the face of the earth; and yet pressure of the ice, and having been fitted with stores of they were acquainted with the use of iron, of which they every description for two years, dropped down the river on had contrived to fashion themselves knives, the material the 18th of April, 1818, and started for their respective being procured, they said, from a mountain composed endestinations, with the most sanguine anticipations of suc- tirely of it, probably a meteoric mass. They appear to be cess on the part of all on board, and with a confident ex- the ugliest of their race, and were named by Captain Ross pectation of obtaining the reward which the munificence the “ Arctic Highlanders.", " The habits,” he says, “ of of Parliament held out to them, in the event of a fortunate these people, appear to be filthy in the extreme; their faces, issue. Nor were the hopes of the public less eager ; for hands, and bodies, are covered with oil and dirt, and they never had an expedition departed from our shores, for the look as if they had never washed themselves since they discovery of a northern communication between the At.

were born." lantic and Pacific Oceans, fitted out on so extensive a scale, Proceeding on their enterprise, our navigators were or so completely equipped in every respect.

astonished at the sight of cliffs covered with red snow, Early, however, in the month of October, the expedition which, when thawed, resembled muddy Port wine. A porunder Captain Buchan had returned unsuccessful. The tion of it was brought home, and submitted to the exaships under his command had proceeded to about latitude mination of chemists and naturalists; and the colouring 80° 30', when they were overtaken by a tremendous gale, matter was supposed to result from the vegetation of an exwhich drove them direct into the ice, and so disabled the tremely minute lichen, or moss, upon the snow. Several of Dorothea, as to render it necessary for her to be sent home; the inlets, which preceding adventurers had placed in Baffin's and, as she was deemed unsafe to proceed alone, the Trent Bay, were now passed and recognised ; and, after reaching was obliged to accompany her.

the great inlet on its northern coast, named by Baffin “ Sir The issue of the expedition under Captain Ross was less Thomas Smith's Sound," the course of the expedition was disastrous. The ships left Lerwick, in the Shetland Isles, shaped to the west, and then to the south. A remarkable on the 30th of April, and, passing Cape Farewell at a con- alteration in the character of the bay soon took place; the siderable distance to the south, fell in with the first iceberg navigation became open, the sea was more free of ice than it on the 26th of May. Entering Davis' Strait about mid- had yet been, and extremely deep; and, on the 30th of way between its opposite shores, they found the ice more August, they entered a wide channel, nearly fifty miles in abundant as they advanced ; and their progress was soon breadth, which was soon recognised as the Sir James Lanimpeded by firm masses of this substance, which compelled caster's Sound of Baffin. Much interest was excited by the them to seek a course nearer to the eastern coast. The appearance of this strait. “ As we knew," says the author of a navigation now became remarkably intricate and dangerous; brief narrative, published in one of the monthly journals, and and some idea of the difficulties attendant upon it may be which Captain Sabine pronounced to be a faithful account of formed from the above copy of a sketch made by Captain the proceedings of the expedition, “as we knew that Baffin Ross, which represents a remarkable passage through the had not entered this sound, but stood away from it to the ice, on the 16th of June. Nevertheless, these obstacles were south-eastward, its appearance inspired hope and joy into all surmounted by the skill and perseverance of our enter. every countenance; and every officer and man, on the inprising navigators; and on the 17th they reached Waygat stant, as it were, made up his mind that this must be the Island, where the observatory and instruments were North-West Passage ; the width of the opening, the extralanded, and several observations made. From hence, ordinary depth of water, the increased temperature, and they continued coasting to the northward ; and when in the surrounding sea, and the strait so perfectly free from

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