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sleep was to perish. Mr Banks and the rest found it impossible to carry them, and there being no remedy they were both suffered to sit down, being partly supported by the bushes, and in a few minutes they fell into a profound sleep: Soon after, some of the people who had been sent forward returned, with the welcome news that a fire was kindled about a quarter of a mile farther on the way. Mr Banks then endeavoured to wake Dr Solander, and happily succeeded : But, though he had not slept five minutes, he had almost lost the use of his limbs, and the muscles were so shrunk that his shoes fell from his feet; he consented to go forward with such assistance as could be given him, but no attempts to relieve poor Richmond were successful. It being found impossible to make him stir, after some time had been lost in the attempt, Mr Banks left his other black servant and a seaman, who seemed to have suffered least by the cold, to look after him; promising, that as soon as two others should be sufficiently warmed, they should be relieved. Mr Banks, with much difficulty, at length got the doctor to the fire ; and soon after sent two of the people who had been refreshed, in hopes that, with the assistance of those who had been left behind, they would be able to bring Richmond, even though it should still be found impossible to wake him. In about half an hour, however, they had the mortification to see these two men return alone; they said, that they had been all round the place to which they had been directed, but could neither find Richmond nor those who had been left with him; and that though they had shouted many times, no voice had replied. This was matter of equal surprise and concern, particularly to Mr Banks, who, while he was wondering how it could happen, missed a bottle of rum, the company's whole stock, which they now concluded to be in the knapsack of one of the absentees. It was conjectured, that with this Richmond had been roused by the two persons who had been left with him, and that, having perhaps drank too freely of it themselves, they had all rambled from the place where they had been left, in search of the fire, instead of waiting for those who should have been their assistants and guides. Another fall of snow now came on, and continued incessantly for two hours, so that all hope of seeing them again, at least alive, were given up; but about twelve o'clock, to the great joy of those at the fire, a shouting was heard at some distance. Mr Banks, with four more, immediately went out, and found the seaman with just strength enough left to stagger along, and call out for assistance: Mr Banks sent him immediately to the fire, and, by his direction, proceeded in search of the other two, whom he soon after found. Richmond was upon his legs, bạt not able to put one before the other; bis companion was lying upon the ground, as insensible as a stone. All hands were now called from the fire, and an attempt was made to carry them to it; but this, notwithstanding the upited efforts of the whole company, was found to be impossible. The night was extremely dark, the soow was now very deep, and, under these additional disadvantages, they found it very difficult to make way through the bushes and the bog for theinselves, all of them getting many falls in the attempt. The only alternative was to make a fire upon the spot; but the snow which had fallen, and was still falling, besides what was every moment shaken in flakes from the trees, rendered it equally impracticable to kindle one there, and to bring any part of that which had been kindled in the wood thither: They were, therefore, reduced to the sad necessity of leaving the unhappy wretches to their fate; having first made them a bed of boughs from the trees, and spread a covering of the same kind over them to a considerable height:
Having now been exposed to the cold and the snow near an hour and a half, some of the rest began to lose their sensibility; and one Briscoe, another of Mr Banks's servants, was so ill, that it was thought he must die before he could be got to the fire.
At the fire, however, at length they arrived; and passed the night in a situation, which, however dreadful in itself, was rendered more afflicting by the remembrance of what was past, and the uncertainty of what was to come. Of twelve, the number that set out together in health and spirits, two were supposed to be already dead; a third was so ill, -that it was very doubtful whether he would be able to go forward in the morning; and a fourth, Mr Buchan, was in danger of a return of his fits, by fresh fatigue, after so uncomfortable a night: They were distant from the ship a long day's journey, through pathless, woods, in which it was too probable they inight be bewildered till they were overtaken by the next night; and, not baving prepared for a journey of more than eight or ten hours, they were wholly
destitute of provisions, except a vulture, which they happened to shoot while they were out, and which, if equally divided, would not afford each of them half a meal, and they knew not how much more they might suffer from the cold, as the snow still continued to fall. A dreadful testimony of the severity of the climate, as it was now the midst of summer in this part of the world, the 21st of December being here the longest day; and every thing might justly be dreaded from a phænomenon which, in the corresponding season, is unknown even in Norway and Lapland.
When the morning dawned, they saw nothing round them, as far as the eye could reach, but snow, which seemed to lie as thick upon the trees as upon the ground; and the blasts returned so frequently, and with such violence, that they found it impossible for them to set out: How long this might last they knew not, and they had but too much reason to apprehend that it would confine them in that desolate forest till they perished with hunger and cold.
After having suffered the misery and terror of this situation till six o'clock in the morning, they conceived some hope of deliverance by discovering the place of the sun through the clouds, which were become thinner, and be gan to break away. Their first care was to see whether the poor wretches whom they had been obliged to leave among the bushes were yel alive; three of the company were dispatched for that purpose, and very soon afterwards returned with the melancholy news, that they were dead.
Notwithstanding the flattering appearance of the sky, the snow still continued to fall so thick that they could not venture out on their journey to the ship; but about eight o'clock a small regular breeze sprung up, which, with the prevailing influence of the sun, at length cleared the air; and they soon after, with great joy, saw the snow fall in large flakes from the trees, a certain sign of an approaching thaw : They now examined more critically the state of their invalids; Briscoe was still very ill, but said, that he thought himself able to walk; and Mr Buchan was much better than either he or his friends had any reason to expect. They were now, however, pressed by the calls of hunger, to which, after long fasting, every consideration of fu. ture good or evil immediately gives way. Before they set forward, therefore, it was unanimously agreed that they
should eat their vulture; the bird was accordingly skinned, and, it being thought best to divide it before it was fit to be eaten, it was cut into ten portions, and every man cooked his own as he thought fit. After this repast, which furnished each of them with about three mouthfuls, they prepared to set out; but it was ten o'clock before the snow was sufficiently gone off
, to render a march practicable. After a walk of about three hours, they were very agreeably surprised to find themselves upon the beach, and much nearer to the ship than they had any reason to expect. Upon reviewing their track from the vessel, they perceived, that, instead of ascending the bill in a line, so as to penetrate into the country, they had made almost a circle round it. When they came on board, they congratulated each other upon their safety, with a joy that no man can feel who has not been exposed to equal danger; and as I had suffered great anxiety at their not returning in the evening of the day on which they set out, I was not wholly without my share.
The Passage through the Streight of Le Maire, and a further
Description of the Inhabitants of Terra del Fuego' and its Productions.
On the 18th and 19th, we were delayed in getting on board our wood and water by a swell: But on the 20th, the weather being more moderate, we again sent the boat on shore, and Mr Banks and Dr Solander went in it. They landed in the bottom of the bay, and while my people were employed in cutting brooms, they pursued their great object, the improvement of natural knowledge, with success, collecting many shells and plants which hitherto have been altogether unknown: They came on board to dinner, and afterwards went again on shore to visit an Indian town, which some of the people had reported to lie about two miles up the country. They found the distance not more than by the account, and they approached it by what appeared to be the common road, yet they were above an hour in getting thither, for they were frequently up to their knees in mud; when they got within a small distance, two of the people came out to meet them, with such state as they could assume; when they joined them, they began to halloo as they had done on board the ship, without addressing themselves either to the strangers or their companions; and having continued this strange vociferation some time, they conducted them to the town. It was situated on a dry knoll, or small hill, covered with wood, none of which seemed to have been cleared away, and consisted of about twelve or fourteen hovels, of the most rude and inartificial structure that can be imagined. They were nothing more than a few poles set up so as to incline towards each other, and meet at the top, forming a kind of a cone, like some of our bee-hives: On the weather-side they were covered with a few boughs, and a little grass; and on the lee-side about one-eighth of the circle was left open, both for a door and a fire-place; and of this kind were the huts that had been seen in St Vincent's bay, in one of which the embers of a fire were still remaining. Furniture they had none; a little grass, which lay round the inside of the hovel, served both for chairs and beds; and of all the utensils which necessity and ingenuity have concurred to produce among other savage nations, they saw only a basket to carry in the hand, a satchel to hang at the back, and the bladder of some beast to hold water, which the natives drink through a hole that is made near the top for that purpose.
The inhabitants of this town were a small tribe, not more than fifty in number, of both sexes and of every age. Their colour resembles that of the rust of iron mixed with oil, and they have long black hair : The men are large, but clamsily built; their stature is froin five feet eight to five feet ten; the women are much less, few of them being more than five feet high. Their whole apparel consists of the skin of a guanicoe, or seal, which is thrown over their shoulders, exactly in the state in which it came from the animal's back; a piece of the same skin, which is drawn over their feet, and gathered about the ancles like a purse, and a small flap, which is worn by the women as a succedaneum for a fig-leaf. The men wear their cloak open, the women tie it about their waist with a thong. But although they are con tent to be naked, they are very ambitious to be fine. Their faces were painted in various forms: The region of the eye was in general white, and the rest of the face adorned with horizontal streaks of red and black; yet scarcely any two were exactly alike. This decoration seems to be more pro