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minate the contest at once; but, Raleigh, estimating the adrantage which the enemy would have in the close encounter from the size of their ships, and the superiority of their soldiery, recommended that the English should continue to annoy them with cannon, hang upon their skirts, and wait upon fortune. This counsel prevailing, the pursuit was kept up with an occasional fight, until the Spaniards arrived in the Straights, between Dover and Calais. And now the English gentry flocked to join the feet in volunteer ships as unto a set field where • immortal fame and glory was to be attained, and faithful ser'vice performed to their prince and country.'
Off Calais, the English at midnight let loose their fireships, which struck such terror into the enemy, that they cut their cables; and thus, some ships run foul of each other, others got ashore, inany were burnt, more taken, and the whole fleet dispersed. After this, the Spaniards may almost be said to have abandoned the enterprize, though their misfortunes did not terminate here, for those that escaped the fight met with such storms in the Northern seas, as completed the disasters and defeat of this vain-glorious attempt upon the religion and liberties of England.
It has been said, that there was not a worthy or famous fa'mily in Spain, that lost not a son, a brother, or a kinsman, • in this expedition ; while among the English, only one Captain
was killed, Cock by name, whose christian name, Fuller "mightily laments the loss of.' Raleigh drew up a circumstantial and lively account of the Spanish defeat, to which he often alludes in his history. Besides the Queen's favour he obtained from her an augmentation of his wine patent. It was a tonnage and poundage upon wines; a project it seems of Raleigh's, of whom it has been observed, that though he gained much
at court, yet he took it not out of the exchequer, or merely out • of the Queen's purse, but by his wit, and the help of the prero'gative; for the Queen was never profuse in delivering out ber "treasures; but paid many and most of her servants part in money, and the rest in grace.' In fact, Sir Walter was a monopolist, and thus improved his fortune; this may account for bis unpopularity, for the people, however, they might admire his parts, were not pleased with the wit by which he found his way into their pockets. When his interest was not concerned, no one had juster views of the freedom of industry; for in Parliament, he opposed the act for sowing hemp, upon the ground,
that he did not like this constraining of men, to manure or use • their ground at our wills; but rather let every man (said he) use his ground to that which it is most fit for, and therein use
his own discretion; for halsers, cables, cordage, and the like, ! we have plentifully enough from foreign nations.' On his way from Portugal, after having served under Drake aud Norris, in the action at the Gronire and burning of Vigo, and obtained a golden chain from the Queen, he visited Ireland, where he had a seignory of 1200 acres, the fruits of the Munster rebellion; and renewed his friendship with Spenser, the poet, who resided near his own Mulla on a forfeited estate, the gift of the Queen. His friendship with the poet, was formed, wben they were both in the service of Earl Grey, in the Irish wars; the latter being the deputy's secretary. This friendship ripened into patronage, as Sir Walter's fortunes improved; and after the death of Sir Philip Sidney, Sir Walter succeeded to his place in the affections of Spencer and the care of his fortune. During the visit, they complimented each other in verse; and Spencer preserved, in a pastoral, a record of their mutual ditties. Raleigh's song was
“ All a lamentable lay
Of Cynthia the lady of the sea. Whence it is inferred, that he was under the Queen's displeasure. He, however, carried the poet from Ireland with him to court, and made his peace with the incence of The Fairy Queen; which he not only persuaded Spenser to publish, but ushered forth, with commendatory verses in a congenial strain of allegory and flattery. He had himself written a poem in praise of the Queen, called Cynthia, which he suppressed, preferring that his " little bark” should “pursue the triumph” and partake of the gale “ of The Fairy Queen." This must have been, however, from sheer modesty. For Spencer addresses him as the “ Summer Nightingale;" fears “ to unseason bis tuneful ear with his rustic madrigal;" admits that he only is fit this argument to write, and humbly submits.
“Yet 'till that thou thy poem wil't make known,
A critic of that day, after illustrating the rules of English poesy by examples drawn from Sir Walter's poems, adds, 'for * ditty and amorous ode I find Sir Walter Raleigh's vein • most lofty, insolent and passionate;' and does not hesitate to rank him with those courtly poets, who have writ excellently . well, Edward, Earl of Oxford, Thomas, Lord Buckhurst, and • Heury, Lord Paget.'
Of that poetry, which extorted such profuse praise, the only verses that will bear reading, are a song to be found in Walton's Complete Angler, if Raleigh, indeed, be the author of it. The rest is like the poetry of most patrons, all our knowledge of which is derived from the poets who commend it. However profane the offering, it is commonly all that poets have to give; and posterity ascribes to gratitude what the patron received for truth. If Raleigh failed in poetry, he was but too successful in love. That which the Queen overlooked in Leicester and Essex; in Raleigh, who was not so much of a favourite, she justly and severely punished. Having had an affair of gallantry with a maid of honour, the beautiful daughter of Sir Nicholas Throgmorton, the Queen's ambassador to Scotland; they were disinissed the court, and Raleigh was thrown into prison. He made the only reparation in his power to the Queen and the injured lady; with whom he lived in conjugal harmony, and from whom in his misfortunes, he received the most tender and faithful services.
Being iinpatient of his disgrace, and relying upon the magnanimity of his royal mistress, and his own extensive and intrepid genius, he determined to extend still further his fame, in the province of discovery, and to improve his fortunes from the treasures of the new world. In the pursuit of an object which might at once fill bis ca pacious mind, dazzle his romantic faney, exhaust his daring spirit of enterprize, and put his fortitude to the severest test, he selected the extentive, magnificent and unexplored region of Guiana. The Spaniards were under the impression, that an empire richer than either Mexico or Peru, was yet to be explored; in whose capital of El-Dorado, every thing glistened with gold, from the idols in the teniple to the utensils of the kitchen. Various expeditions had been fitted out by private adventurers, immense sums of money expended, incredible labours achieved, dreadful sufferings endured, of famine, storms, shipwrecks and pestilence, and lives prodigally expended in the vain pursuits. These accounts, with which Raleigh was familiar, only quickened his ardour and hardened his courage.
The natives upon the coast had frequently spoken of this golden region, and the better opinion seems now to be, that they had indistinct notions of the empire of Peru, rather than designed to mislead and bewilder the Spaniards, with lying accounts of an imaginary empire. Raleigh, in the contidence of his genius, or under the delusions of a romantic temperament, seems to have believed that this discovery and conquest was reserved for him, and that he was destined like Cortes, or Pizarro, to add a golden empire to his country, and to pour
into the lap of his royal mistress, those treasures which would enable her to contend with Spain on the theatre of the world; and at length from this foothold, to extend the arın of conquest over the Indies—the envy, the pride, the glory, and the strength of Spain. For Raleigh thought that the kingdoms which the 'King of Spain had endangered, the armies, garrisons and navies • he maintains, the great losses he has sustained of 100 sail of 'great ships in his Armada (after which he begins again like
a storm to threaten shipwreck to his enemies); that all these • great abilities did not arise from the trades of sack and seville
oranges, nor from ought else that either Spain, Portugal, or any of his Provinces produce, but from his Indian gold that • endangers and disturbs all the nations of Europe, creeps into • their councils, purchases intelligence, and sets bound loyalty at liberty, in the greatest monarchies thereof.'
With such views, Raleigh fitted out a fleet chiefly at his own expense, being aided only by Lord Howard the Admiral, and Sir Robert Cecil. He commanded in person, and sailed for Trinidad, where, after collecting his ships before proceeding to the continent in order to gain the hearts of the Indians, he attacked the city of St. Joseph, where he found several caciques in chains, whom he released, while he made a prisoner of the governor, who had been engaged in making inquiries about the country, and obtained from him all the knowledge in his possession.
Having manned his boats with one hundred men, he determined, notwithstanding the lateness of the season, to explore the country. He met with great difficulties at the onset from the shallows and the mazy streams, upon the coast ; but at length, he got into the great Amana, a branch of the Orinoque. Rowing against a rapid current and exposed to the fires of the line, with provisions at first stale, then corrupt, and at length totally inadequate, the ardour of his men was quite exhausted ; and it was only by the indomitable spirit of Raleigh, and his submission to every privation, and his ingenious artifices to lead them on, that they were induced to persevere, until happily they arrived at a beautiful and plentiful country, where their senses were cheered with the landscape, and their appetites gratified with the fruits of a tropical clime. Raleigh in his glowing pictures has, no doubt, indulged his fancy; but the country presented every thing that could put it into action. The sky, the forests, the streams, the flowers, the fruits, the birds, the beasts, the fish, even the reptiles and insects, of an equatorial region, had a novelty and splendour, that appeared like enchantment to a northern imagination. Instead of that VOL. IV.NO. 8.
“ burnt up zone,” which the ancients thought it unsafe even to approach, nature seemed as from a warm embrace, to have produced what eye before had not seen, nor ear heard, and which almost surpassed the conception of an European intellect. After having refreshed themselves at one of the Indian villages, they came upon the steps of some Spaniards, who had been in pursuit of gold and found some of the ore. Raleigh pursuaded himself, that he was in the neighbourhood of gold mines, and obtained some information which might afterwards be useful; but the season would not, with his limited force, allow him to explore them at this time. He, therefore, continued to ascend the river, and after a few days, passed into the waters of the great Orinoque. For many days he prosecuted his voyage up this magnificent river, and at length arrived at the Province of Aromia, at the distance of six hundred miles by the course of the river from the sea. There he was visited by the aged King Topiowary, who not only brought him provisions, but some of that fruit, the pine-apple, which King James afterwards, in his admiration of its exquisiteness, and his zeal for the palates of kings, declared was “too delicious for a subject to taste of.” When this savage king whom Raleigh extols, " for his gravity, judgment, and good discourse, without the help of learning or breeding," and other native Princes understood the cause of bis coming, which it seems was no other than to deliver them from the tyranny of the Spaniards; it is not surprising, that they should not only tell him all they knew of Guiana, but something more, and entertain him not merely with golden opinions, but with the story of a tribe or nation, who had their eyes in their shoulders, and their mouths in their breasts; and of the Amazons who differed only from the sisterhood in Asia, by preserving the right breast. Raleigh was engaged in matters of too much moment to go in quest of these monsters. He does not say that he saw any of them. Indeed, he expressly says: ' for my own part, I saw them not, but am resolved that so 'many people did not all combine or forethink to make • the report. His faith in the Amazons was confirmed by his learning; for in his History of the World, in the chapter in which " it is showed by way of digression, that such Amazons have been and are;" after citing the authorities of J. Solinus. Pomponius Mela, Ptolemy, Pliny, Claudian, Diodorus Siculus Herodotus, Ammianus Marcellinus and Plutarch, among the ancients; and Orellana as reported by Francis Lopez and Ulricus Schmidel among the moderns, he concludes; I have
produced these authorities in part to justify my own relation of these Amazons, because that which was delivered to me