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concernment, together with their families, and departed farther into the country; for such was their weakness, and disabiliry for resistance, that their number (on that part of the island) exceeded not five-hundred men, besides some negroe slaves; but, what they could not act by force of arms, they did by policy; as too soon will appear.
The English army, being possessed of the breast works, and guns that commanded the landing-place; the forlorn-hope was drawn forth, and sent towards the town, who, that night, would not adventure to enter therein, until the morrow following; at which time they found it destitute of inhabitants, or any thing else necessary for their entertainment, or accommodation, except bare walls, bedsteads, chairs, and cow-bides. Soon after, the general, with the whole army, consisting of about seventhousand men, marched up thither; where there then came in divers Spaniards, which seemed to be of quality, to treat, bringing with them, as presents for the general, wine, poultry, divers sorts of fruits
, and other rarities that the country yielded, promising also to send in beeves, sufficient for the maintenance of the army, with other large overtures, and high compliments.
This treaty being continued for certain days, the enemy had free egress and regress as well into the town, and English quarters, as elsewhere, continuing their welcomed presents, bringing cattle for the use of *the army, and behaving themselves with such civil and kind, although feigned, deportment, that they invited divers soldiers of the army to visit them in their quarters, where they had wine given them, and were much made of; by which means they gained knowledge, by some overcome with liquor, that they had been at Hispaniola, and how they were there dealt withal, as also the extremities and wants they were driven to in their marches, for want of water and other necessaries, in those hot countries, whereby they were much disabled. The Spaniards understanding this, and viewing the present weak condition of the army (by which they guessed at the future, if their wants were not supplied from time to time) were now animated to put in practice their uttermost endeavours for preservation of their goods and estates, and not to stand to any articles of agreement, to depart the island, with some few cloaths only to their backs, as was expected; notwithstanding, they fairly dissembled the matter, and, to avoid all suspicion, sent their governor, as they pretended, an old decrepid seignior, full of the French-disease, and brought in betwixt two in a hammock, to sign the articles of agreement, which he, with some others, accordingly did.
In the mean season, these subtle and sly Spaniards had conveyed far away in the woods all their riches and best goods, which, in some days after the army was possessed of the town, remained in the Spanish quarters near at hand, and might have been soon intercepted; they also gathered up all the ablest and best horses, during the treaty,as well in the English quarters, as their own; and, the time limited for their departure from the island, according to the articles signed, being near expired, they drove away most of all the cattle near the town, and, following after their goods, wives, children, and servants, which were gone before at least three days journey, swept and cleared the country, as they went, of all vital provisions, leaving their old pocky governor as a hostage for their return.
And thus were they overcome by the subtlety and deceit of the Spaniards at Jamaica, as well as they had been lately vanquished by their lances at Hispaniola; and all the redress, that could be now thought on, was to send a party in pursuit of them. Colonel Bullard, with two-thousand men, was employed on the business, part of which number were shipped in small vessels and shallops, and so conveyed by water unto a bay, seventeen leagues to the eastward of that where the heet lay, where the fleet lay, where they came in conjunction with the rest that had marched thither on foot. The politick intent of this grand design was to surprise the Spaniards and their luggage, betwixt both parties, as they were shipping off for the main, which was supposed would be at that place; but in that they deceived themselves, for the enemy had no such intent, but rather directed their passage through by-ways, thick woods, and over high hills and large mountains, of which there are plenty, having scouts and sentinels abroad, in each passable way and path, to discover the approach of any; it being almost an impossible thing for an army, except well acquainted with the country, to follow or find them out; and again, the excessive heat of the sun, the want of water in many places, with other defects and impediments, naturally incident to the place, and disagreeing to English constitutions, did more weaken and disable them in ten miles march there, than forty in their own country. But I shall now leave this pursuing party, to wander in the woods a while, and there kill cattle, if any they find, to preserve life, rather than hazard it at so great disadvantages against the Spaniards, and shew in what posture and condition those in the town were in, who, after the departure of the Spanish cators, were in so great want, that dogs and cats were the best part of their diet, with such sort of food as they had formerly tasted at Hispaniola, as horses, assnecoes, and such like; there being a strict order, that, on pain of death, none should presume to kill any cows or oxen; and, if at any time there went forth, by especial order, some small party that brought in beeves, they were distributed among
the superior officers of the army, the interior men having only inferior meai; the often use whereof made them somewhat participate of the nature of the beasts, sometimes living the life of dogs, and, at other times, bearing the burthen of asses; and what other encouragement or comfort could they have, than to ponder in their minds thus, Solamen miscris socios habaisse doloris.
Jamaica harbour, May the twenty-fourth, it was resolved, at a council of war, that the general of the navy, and rear-admiral, in the ships Swift-sure and Paragon, with most of the Flemish ships, should return for England, orders being given for their speedy fitting, and recruit with fresh water and other necessaries.
May the twenty-fifth, there happened an ill accident in the feet. The ship called the Discovery, of the States, a vessel of good force and burthen, was unhappily fired by filling brandy-wine in the steward-room; the flame of the candle, taking hold of that combustible liquor, so vehemently increased the fury of the fire, that there was no prevention. Wherefore, to avoid further danger, most of the ships boats, that could be had in readiness, towed her off on a bank of sand, some distance from the fleet, where, after she had consumed about four hours, her maCuba sixty-eight leagues, and in breadth, from those islands to the main, twenty leagues, the current there setting N. N. E. the swiftness or slackness whereof de pendeth on the falling of the rains, which about the month of August, are constantly very great; many exceeding large American rivers being augmented thereby, the spacious Bay of Mexico becomes their receptacle, and so disburtheneth its swelling floods, through this narrow streight, into the Virgivian Ocean; it is therefore of some called the Gulf of Mexico.
August 4. The fleet gained the length of the Bermudas, since when, for the generality, being favoured with fair winds and seasonable weather, the twenty-second of this instant, they had also the length of the Western islands.
August 30. They descried the English shore, near the Lizard, and having a strong gale, S. S. W. the day following the feet anchored at Spithead, near Portsmouth; three sail, having been separated from the rest by obscure weather in the night, before their entrance into the gulf, came in hither also this day, some few hours before the other.
And now for ever blessed be the divine Creator, who hath dealt thus mercifully with us, the unworthiest of his servants, giving us so large experience of his abundant goodness towards us, and bringing us once more unto the land of our nativity. The Lord in mercy so incline the hearts of this nation, that those grand sins of presumption and covetousness may no longer reign amongst them, lest, seeking after shadows, they lose the real substance; or coveting the good, or gold of other they incur the high displeasure of Almighty God upon themselves, and so become the scorn and derision of their enemies, and a by-word to other nations. Avertat Deus.
THE ENGLISH HERMIT*,
WONDER OF THIS AGE.
Being a relation of the life of Roger Crab, living near Uxbridge; taken
from his own mouth; shewing his strange, reserved, and unparalleled kind of life, who counteth it a sin against his body and soul, to eat any sort of flesh, fish, or living creature, or to drink any wine, ale, or beer. He can live with three farthings a week. His constant tood is roots and herbs; as cabbage, turneps, carrots, dock-leaves, and grass; also bread and bran, without butter or cheese : his cloathing
• This is the 125th Number in the Catalogue of Paraphlets in the Harleian Library.
is sack-cloth. He left the army, and kept a shop at Chesham, and hath now left off that, and sold a considerable estate to give to the poor, shewing his reasons from the Scripture, Mark x. 21. Jer.
xxxy. Wherefore if meat make my brother to offend, I will never eat flesh
while the world stands, 1 Cor. viii. 13. London, printed, and are to be sold in Pope's-Head Alley, and at the Ex
change, 1655. Quarto, containing twenty-two pages.
The Publisher to the Reader. Honest reader, Before you come to the author's own epistle, and narration, I shall mention some remarkable passages, which I had from his own mouth, and find them not mentioned in his writing; and, I can assure thee, this relation is no feigned stury, or fable, but thou hast it presented to thy view, as I received it from the author himself, with all the verses of his own composing.
This Roger Crab is well known to many in this city, and the county; and, while this book was printing, he staid purposely here, in the city, till it was published, and, I think, is in town still; he lodged at the Golden Anchor, in Whitecross-street, at one Mr. Carter's house, a glover, where divers people resorted to see him, where such, as doubt of it, may be satisfied. I am informed by himself, and others, how that, three years since, he was a haberdasher of hats, and kept a shop at Chesham, in Buckinghamshire; and hath since given over his trade, and sold his estate, and given it to the poor, reserving a small matter to himself, being a single man; and now liveth at Icknam, near Uxbridge, on a small rood of ground, for which he payeth fifty shillings a year, and hath a mean cottage, of his own building, in it; but that which is most strange, and most to be admired, is his strange, reserved, and hermetical kind of life, in refusing to eat any sort of flesh, who saith it is a sin, against his body and soul, to eat flesh, or to drink any beer, ale, or wine; his diet is only such poor homely food, as his own rood of ground beareth, as corn, bread, and bran, herbs, roots, dockleaves, mallows, and grass ; his drink is water; his apparel is as mean also; he wears a sackcloth frock, and no band on his neck; and this, he saith, is out of conscience, and in obedience to that command of Christ to the young man in the gospel, and in imitation of the prophets, and the Rechabites in Jer. xxxv. who neither planted vineyards, nor built houses, nor drank wine, and were highly commended by the Lord for it. I reasoned the case with him, and told him, that I conceived Christ's meaning, when he bad the young man sell all he had, and give to the poor, was, that he should part with all his dearest sins, that were as dear to him as his possessions, or else to try him for his covetousness; he answered, how can a man give that money to the poor, which he sclleth his sins for? I perceive he is well read in the Scrip
gazine of powder blew up, and did no more harm; the ship Swift-sure, being then ready to careen, had most of her best guns there on board, which were all afterwards, by industry and art, taken up, notwithstanding that they lay in above three fathom water.
June the first, Colonel Bullard, after a long march to little purpose, returned with his party to the town, bringing with him some cattle, and giving notice of great abundance that are in the more remote parts of the country; since which time there have gone forth divers parties, who have also brought in droves of cattle, and, amongst the rest, a Spanish lady, with some attendants, who, were she but as good as great, as virtuous as ponderous, and as fair as fat, certainly she would far exceed any three ladies in England, in worth, weight, and beauty.
June the sixth, the ship Cardiff set sail for England, as the harbinger of the rest of the fleet, which were to follow after.
And, the ninth following, a general muster was taken of the land army, whose number was found to be so much diminished of late, not so much by any pestilential or violent disease, as for mere want of natural sustenance, which, in common reason, may seem strange, that, of all men, soldiers should starve in a cook's shop, as the saying is, or perish for want of food in a country so abounding with flesh, fish, and other vital provisions ; but it is to be hoped, that, for the future, they may have an allowance of better and more wholsome diet than yet they have had, if the tyranny of their commanders, or slothfulness of themselves, or both, prevent not.
There lately arrived at Jamaica divers victuallers with provisions for the fleet, also arms and ammunition for the army; but hoes and hatchets were fitter for them.
June the twentieth, there came in hither three small vessels, prizes, which were taken by the Selby and Grantham frigates, who were ordered to lie plying to and again off the island of llispaniola ; some Spaniards, in them taken, reported, that, at the first appearance of the English feet before the town of Domingo, the inhabitants deserted the place, and went all into the wonds, where they continued for three days, leaving their magazine of powder behind, which they had once intended to have blown up; but, perceiving that, in that time, neither the ships approached the harbour, which they much dreaded, nor any else came to molist them, they re-entered the town; and being much encouraged and strengthened by those of the country, who daily came in thither, fortified what they might, and, blocking up the mouth of their harbour with some vessels which they there sunk, resolved to use their utterinost endeavours to maintain the place.
Oristano, June 24. There was this day a rumour that General Venables was departed this life, which was but a rumour, not real; but his excellency hath not been current, since his being at Hispaniola. The grind business, that the army is now upon, is to settle each regiment in the several quarters, where they have parcels of land, equally proportioned unto them, which being subdivided amongst the otticer's according to their respective places, some small share is like to fall unto the common soldiers; but what improvement may be made thereof, or how it will please Almighty God farther to deal with this army, let