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a retinue of these, who are his purveyors, discovering and distinguishing his prey for him; while he in return gratefully protects them from the ravenous, hungry dolphin. They are commonly counted a very greedy fish; yet this refuses to meddle with the bait thrown out for him. "T is likely he has lately made a full meal.
Thursday, September 22d.- A fresh gale at west all this day. The shark has left us.
Friday, September 23d.-This morning we spied a sail to windward of us about two leagues. We showed our jack upon the ensign-staff, and shortened sail for them till about noon, when she came up with us. She was the Snow, from Dublin, bound to New York, having upwards of fifty servants on board, of both sexes; they all appeared upon deck, and seemed very much. pleased at the sight of us. There is really something strangely cheering to the spirits in the meeting of a ship at sea, containing a society of creatures of the same species and in the same circumstances with ourselves, after we had been long separated and excommunicated as it were from the rest of mankind. My heart fluttered in my breast with joy, when I saw so many human countenances, and I could scarce refrain from that kind of laughter, which proceeds from some degree of inward pleasure. When we have been for a considerable time tossing on the vast waters, far from the sight of any land or ships, or any mortal creature but ourselves (except a few fish and sea-birds), the whole world, for aught we know, may be under a second deluge, and we, like Noah and his company in the ark, the only surviving remnant of the human race. The two captains have mutually promised to keep each other company; but this I look upon to be only matter of course, for, if ships are unequal in their sailing, they seldom stay for one another, especially strangers. This afternoon, the wind, that had been so long contrary to us, came about to the eastward, (and looks as if it would hold,) to our no small satisfaction. I find our messmates in a better humor, and more pleased with their present condition, than they have been since they came out; which I take to proceed from the contemplation of the miserable circumstances of the passengers on board our neighbour, and making the comparison. We reckon ourselves in a kind of paradise, when we consider how they live, confined and stifled up with such a lousy, stinking rabble, in this sultry latitude.
Saturday, September 24th.— Last night we had a very high wind, and very thick weather; in which we lost our consort.
This morning early we spied a sail ahead of us, which we took to be her; but presently after we spied another, and then we plainly perceived, that neither of them could be the Snow; for one of them stemmed with us, and the other bore down directly upon us, having the weather-gage of us. As the latter drew near, we were a little surprised, not knowing what to make of her; for, by the course she steered, she did not seem designed for any port, but looked as if she intended to clap us aboard immediately. I could perceive concern in every face on board; but she presently eased us of our apprehensions by bearing away astern of When we hoisted our jack, she answered with French colors, and presently took them down again; and we soon lost sight of her. The other ran by us in less than half an hour, and answered our jack with an English ensign; she stood to the eastward, but the wind was too high to speak with either of them. About nine o'clock we spied our consort, who had got a great way ahead of us. She, it seems, had made sail during the night, while we lay by, with our mainyard down, during the hard gale. She very civilly shortened sail for us, and this afternoon we came up with her; and now we are running along very amicably together, side by side, having a most glorious fair wind.
"On either side the parted billows flow,
While the black ocean foams and roars below."
Sunday, September 25th.- Last night we shot ahead of our consort pretty far. About midnight, having lost sight of each other, we shortened sail for them; but this morning they were got as far ahead of us as we could see, having run by us in the dark unperceived. We made sail and came up with them about noon; and, if we chance to be ahead of them again in the night, we are to show them a light, that we may not lose company by any such accident for the future. The wind still continues fair, and we have made a greater run these last four-and-twenty hours than we have done since we came out. All our discourse, now, is of Philadelphia, and we begin to fancy ourselves on shore. already. Yet a small change of weather, attended by a westerly wind, is sufficient to blast all our blooming hopes, and quite spoil our present good humor.
Monday, September 26th. The wind continued fair all night. In the twelve o'clock watch our consort, who was about a league ahead of us, showed us a light, and we answered with another. About six o'clock this morning we had a sudden hurry of wind
at all points of the compass, accompanied with the most violent shower of rain I ever saw, insomuch that the sea looked like a cream dish. It surprised us with all our sails up, and was so various, uncertain, and contrary, that the mizzen topsail was full, while the head sails were all aback; and, before the men could run from one end of the ship to the other, 't was about again. But this did not last long ere the wind settled to the northeast again, to our great satisfaction. Our consort fell astern of us in the storm, but made sail and came up with us again after it was over. We hailed one another on the morrow, congratulating upon the continuance of the fair wind, and both ran on very lovingly together.
Tuesday, September 27th. The fair wind continues still. have laid a bowl of punch, that we are in Philadelphia next Saturday se'nnight; for we reckon ourselves not above one hundred and fifty leagues from land. The Snow keeps us company still. Wednesday, September 28th. We had very variable winds and weather last night, accompanied with abundance of rain; and now the wind is come about westerly again, but we must bear it with patience. This afternoon we took up several branches of gulf-weed (with which the sea is spread all over, from the Western Isles to the coast of America); but one of these branches had something peculiar in it. In common with the rest, it had a leaf about three quarters of an inch long, indented like a saw, and a small yellow berry, filled with nothing but wind; besides which it bore a fruit of the animal kind, very surprising to see. It was a small shell-fish like a heart, the stalk by which it proceeded from the branch being partly of a grisly kind. Upon this one branch of the weed, there were near forty of these vegetable animals; the smallest of them, near the end, contained a substance somewhat like an oyster, but the larger were visibly animated, opening their shells every moment, and thrusting out a set of unformed claws, not unlike those of a crab; but the inner part was still a kind of soft jelly. Observing the weed more narrowly, I spied a very small crab crawling among it, about as big as the head of a ten-penny nail, and of a yellowish color, like the weed itself. This gave me some reason to think, that he was a native of the branch; that he had not long since been in the same condition with the rest of those little embryos that appeared in the shells, this being the method of their generation; and that, consequently, all the rest of this odd kind of fruit might be crabs in due time. To strengthen my conjecture, I have resolved to
keep the weed in salt water, renewing it every day till we come on shore, by this experiment to see whether any more crabs will be produced or not in this manner.
I remember that the last calm we had, we took notice of a large crab upon the surface of the sea, swimming from one branch of weed to another, which he seemed to prey upon; and I likewise recollect that at Boston, in New England, I have often seen small crabs with a shell like a snail's upon their backs, crawling about in the salt water; and likewise at Portsmouth in England. It is likely, Nature has provided this hard shell to secure them till their own proper shell has acquired a sufficient hardness, which once perfected, they quit their old habitation and venture abroad safe in their own strength. The various changes that silk-worms, butterflies, and several other insects go through, make such alterations and metamorphoses not improbable. This day the captain of the Snow with one of his passengers came on board us; but the wind beginning to blow, they did not stay dinner, but returned to their own vessel.
Thursday, September 29th. Upon shifting the water in which I had put the weed yesterday, I found another crab, much smaller than the former, who seemed to have newly left his habitation. But the weed begins to wither, and the rest of the embryos are dead. This new-comer fully convinces me, that at least this sort of crabs are generated in this manner. The Snow's captain dined on board us this day. Little or no wind.
Friday, September 30th.-I sat up last night to observe an eclipse of the moon, which the calendar, calculated for London, informed us would happen at five o'clock in the morning, September 30th. It began with us about eleven last night, and continued till near two this morning, darkening her body about six digits, or one half; the middle of it being about half an hour after twelve, by which we may discover that we are in a meridian of about four hours and half from London, or 67 degrees of longitude, and consequently have not much above one hundred leagues to run. This is the second eclipse we have had within these fifteen days. We lost our consort in the night, but saw him again this morning near two leagues to the windward. This afternoon we spoke with him again. We have had abundance of dolphins about us these three or four days; but we have not taken any. more than one, they being shy of the bait. I took in some more gulf-weed to-day with the boat-hook, with shells upon it like that before mentioned, and three living perfect crabs, each less than
the nail of my little finger. One of them had something particularly observable, to wit, a thin piece of the white shell which I before noticed as their covering while they remained in the condition of embryos, sticking close to his natural shell upon his back. This sufficiently confirms me in my opinion of the manner of their generation. I have put this remarkable crab with a piece of the gulf-weed, shells, &c., into a glass phial filled with salt water, (for want of spirits of wine,) in hopes to preserve the curiosity till I come on shore. The wind is southwest.
Saturday, October 1st.- Last night our consort, who goes incomparably better upon a wind than our vessel, got so far to windward and ahead of us, that this morning we could see nothing of him, and it is like shall see him no more. These southwests are hot, damp winds, and bring abundance of rain and dirty weather with them.
Sunday, October 2d. — Last night we prepared our line with a design to sound this morning at four o'clock; but the wind coming about again to the northwest, we let it alone. I cannot help fancying the water is changed a little, as is usual when a ship comes within soundings, but it is probable I am mistaken; for there is but one besides myself of my opinion, and we are very apt to believe what we wish to be true.
Monday, October 3d.- The water is now very visibly changed to the eyes of all except the captain and the mate, and they will by no means allow it; I suppose because they did not see it first. Abundance of dolphins are about us, but they are very shy, and keep at a distance. Wind northwest.
Tuesday, October 4th. — Last night we struck a dolphin, and this morning we found a flying-fish dead under the windlass. He is about the bigness of a small mackerel, a sharp head, a small mouth, and a tail forked somewhat like a dolphin, but the lowest branch much larger and longer than the other, and tinged with yellow. His back and sides of a darkish blue, his belly white, and his skin very thick. His wings are of a finny substance, about a span long, reaching, when close to his body, from an inch below his gills to an inch above his tail. When they fly it is straight forward, (for they cannot readily turn,) a yard or two above the water; and perhaps fifty yards is the furthest before they dip into .the water again, for they cannot support themselves in the air any longer than while their wings continue wet. These flying-fish are the common prey of the dolphin, who is their mortal enemy. When he pursues them, they rise and fly; and he keeps close under