Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation, by Richard Hakluyt

The voyage of M. Hore and diuers other gentlemen, to Newfoundland, and Cape Briton, in the year 1536 and in the 28 yere of king Henry the 8.

One master Hore of London, a man of goodly stature and of great courage, and giuen to the studie of Cosmographie, in the 28 yere of king Henry the 8 and in the yere of our Lord 1536 encouraged diuers Gentlemen and others, being assisted by the kings fauor and good countenance, to accompany him in a voyage of discouerie vpon the Northwest parts of America: wherein his perswaions tooke such effect, that within short space many gentlemen of the Innes of court, and of the Chancerie, and diuers others of good worship, desirous to see the strange things of the world, very willingly entered into the action with him, some of whose names were as followeth: M. Weekes a gentleman of the West countrey of fiue hundred markes by the yeere liuing. M. Tucke a gentleman of Kent. M. Tuckfield. M Thomas Buts the sonne of Sir William Buts knight, of Norfolke, which was lately liuing, and from whose mouth I wrote most of this relation. M. Hardie, M. Biron, M. Carter, M. Wright, M. Rastall Serieant Rastals brother, M. Ridley, and diuers other, which all were in the Admyrall called the Trinitie, a ship of seuen score tunnes, wherein M. Hore himselfe was imbarked. M. Armigil Wade. In the other ship whose name was the Minion, went a very learned and vertuous gentleman one M. Armigil Wade, Afterwards Clerke of the Counsailes of king Henry the 8 and king Edward the sixth, father to the worshipfull M. William Wade now Clerke of the priuie Counsell, M. Oliuer Dawbeney marchant of London, M. Ioy afterward gentleman of the Kings Chappell, with diuers other of good account. The whole number that went in the two tall ships aforesaid to wit, the Trinitie and the Minion, were about six score persons, whereof thirty were gentlemen, which all were mustered in warlike maner at Grauesend, and after the receiuing of the Sacrament, they embarked themselues in the ende of Aprill. 1526.

Cape Briton. The Island of Penguin standeth about the latitude of 30 degrees. From the time of their setting out from Grauesend, they were very long at sea, to witte, aboue two moneths, and neuer touched any land vntill they came to part of the West Indies about Cape Briton, shaping their course thence Northeastwardes, vntill they came to the Island of Penguin, which is very full of rockes and stones, whereon they went and found it full of great foules white and gray, as big as geese, and they saw infinite numbers of their egges. They draue a great number of the foules into their boates vpon their sayles, and tooke vp many of their egges, the foules they flead and their skinnes were very like hony combes full of holes being flead off: they dressed and eate them and found them to be very good and nourishing meat. They saw also store of beares both blacke and white, of whome they killed some, and tooke them for no bad foode.

M. Dawbneys report to M. Richard Hakluyt of the Temple. M. Oliuer Dawbeny, which (as it is before mentioned) was in this voyage, and in the Minion, told M. Richard Hakluyt of the middle Temple these things following: to wit, They behold the Sauages of Newfoundland. That after their arriuall in Newfoundland, and hauing bene there certaine dayes at ancre, and not hauing yet seene any of the naturall people of the countrey, the same Dawbeney walking one day on the hatches, spied a boate with Sauages of those parts, rowing down the Bay toward them, to gaze vpon the ship, and our people, and taking viewe of their comming aloofe, hee called to such as were vnder the hatches, and willed them to come vp if they would see the natural people of the countrey, that they had so long and so much desired to see: whereupon they came vp, and tooke viewe of the Sauages rowing toward them and their ship, and vpon the viewe they manned out a ship-boat to meet them and to take them. But they spying our ship-boat making towards them, returned with maine force and fled into an Island that lay vp in the Bay or riuer there, and our men pursued them into the Island, and the Sauages fledde and escaped: but our men found a fire, and the side of a beare on a wooden spit left at the same by the Sauages that were fled.

There in the same place they found a boote of leather garnished on the outward side of the calfe with certaine braue trailes, as it were of rawe silke, and also found a certaine great warme mitten: And these caryed with them, they returned to their shippe, not finding the Sauages, nor seeing any thing else besides the soyle, and the things growing in the same, which chiefely were store of firre and pine trees.

And further, the said M. Dawbeny told him, that lying there they grew into great want of victuals, and that there they found small reliefe, more then that they had from the nest of an Osprey, that brought hourely to her yong great plentie of diuers sorts of fishes. Extreme famine. But such was the famine that increased amongst them from day to day, that they were forced to seeke to relieue themselues of raw herbes and rootes that they sought on the maine: but the famine increasing, and the reliefe of herbes being to little purpose to satisfie their insatiable hunger, in the fieldes and desertes here and there, the fellowe killed his mate while he stooped to take vp a roote for his reliefe, and cutting out pieces of his bodie whom he had murthered, broyled the same on the coles and greedily deuoured them.

By this meane the company decreased, and the officers knew not what was become of them; And it fortuned that one of the company driuen with hunger to seeke abroade for reliefe found Our men eate one another for famine. out in the fieldes the sauour of broyled flesh, and fell out with one for that he would suffer him and his fellowes to sterue, enioying plentie as he thought: and this matter growing to cruell speaches, he that had the broyled meate, burst out into these wordes: If thou wouldest needes know, the broyled meate that I had was a piece of such a mans buttocke. The report of this brought to the ship, the Captaine found what became of those that were missing and was perswaded that some of them were neither deuoured with wilde beastes, nor yet destroyed by Sauages: The Captaines Oration. And hereupon hee stood vp and made a notable Oration, containing, Howe much these dealings offended the Almightie, and vouched the Scriptures from first to last, what God had in cases of distresse done for them that called vpon them, and told them that the power of the Almighty was then no lesse, then in al former time it had bene. And added, that if it had not pleased God to haue holpen them in that distresse, that it had bene better to haue perished in body, and to haue liued euerlastingly, then to haue relieued for a poore time their mortal bodyes, and to bee condemned euerlastingly, both body and soule to the vnquenchable fire of hell. And thus hauing ended to that effect, be began to exhort to repentance, and besought all the company to pray, that it might please God to looke vpon their miserable present state and for his owne mercie to relieue the same. The famine increasing, and the inconuenience of the men that were missing being found, they agreed amongst themselues rather then all should perish, to cast lots who should be killed: The English surprise a French ship, wherein they returned home. And such was the mercie of God, that the same night there arriued a French ship in that port, well furnished with vittaile, and such was the policie of the English, that they became masters of the same, and changing ships and vittailing them, they set sayle to come into England.

Haukes and other foules. In their iourney they were so ferre Northwards, that they sawe mighty Islands of yce in the sommer season, on which were haukes and other foules to rest themselues being weary of flying ouer farre from the maine. Foules supposed to be Storkes. They sawe also certaine great white foules with red bils and red legs, some what bigger then Herons, which they supposed to be Storkes. They arriued at S. Iues in Cornewall about the ende of October. From thence they departed vnto a certairie castle belonging to sir Iohn Luttrel, where M. Thomas Buts, and M. Rastall and other Gentlemen of the voyaye were very friendly entertained: after that they came to the Earle of Bathe at Bathe, and thence to Bristoll, so to London. M. Buts was so changed in the voyage with hunger and miserie, that sir William his father and my Lady his mother knew him not to be their sonne, vntill they found a secret marke which was a wart vpon one of his knees, as hee told me Richard Hakluyt of Oxford himselfe, to whom I rode 200. miles onely to learne the whole trueth of this voyage from his own mouth, as being the onely man now aliue that was in this discouerie.

The French royally recompenced by king Henry the 8. Certaine moneths after, those Frenchmen came into England, and made complaint to king Henry the 8: the king causing the matter to be examined, and finding the great distresse of his subiects, and the causes of the dealing so with the French, was so mooued with pitie, that he punished not his subiects, but of his owne purse made full and royall recompence vnto the French.

In this distresse of famine, the English did somewhat relieue their vitall spirits, by drinking at the springs the fresh water out of certaine wooden cups, out of which they had drunke their Aqua composita before.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:55