September 30, 1659. I poor miserable Robinson Crusoe, being shipwreck'd, during a dreadful Storm, in the offing, came on Shore on this dismal unfortunate Island, which I call'd the Island of Despair, all the rest of the Ship's Company being drown'd, and my self almost dead.
All the rest of that Day I spent in afflicting my self at the dismal Circumstances I was brought to, viz. I had neither Food, House, Clothes, Weapon, or Place to fly to, and in Despair of any Relief, saw nothing but Death before me, either that I should be devour'd by wild Beasts, murther'd by Savages, or starv'd to Death for Want of Food. At the Approach of Night, I slept in a Tree for fear of wild Creatures, but slept soundly tho' it rain'd all Night.
October 1. In the Morning I saw to my great Surprise the Ship had floated with the high Tide, and was driven on Shore again much nearer the Island, which as it was some Comfort on one hand, for seeing her sit upright, and not broken to Pieces, I hop'd, if the Wind abated, I might get on board, and get some Food and Necessaries out of her for my Relief; so on the other hand, it renew'd my Grief at the Loss of my Comrades, who I imagin'd if we had all staid on board might have sav'd the Ship, or at least that they would not have been all drown'd as they were; and that had the Men been sav'd, we might perhaps have built us a Boat out of the Ruins of the Ship, to have carried us to some other Part of the World. I spent great Part of this Day in perplexing my self on these things; but at length seeing the Ship almost dry, I went upon the Sand as near as I could, and then swam ings I wanted exceedingly for this Work, viz. A Pick-axe, a Shovel, and a Wheel-barrow or Basket, so I desisted from my Work, and began to consider how to supply that Want and make me some Tools; as for a Pickaxe, I made use of the Iron Crows, which were proper enough, tho' heavy; but the next thing was a Shovel or Spade, this was so absolutely necessary, that indeed I could do nothing effectually without it, but what kind of one to make I knew not.
Nov. 18@“àoal Water, and the things being chiefly heavy, I recover'd many of them when the Tide was out.
Oct. 25. It rain'd all Night and all Day, with some Gusts of Wind, during which time the Ship broke in Pieces, the Wind blowing a little harder than before, and was no more to be seen, except the Wreck of her, and that only at low Water. I spent this Day in covering and securing the Goods which I had sav'd, that the Rain might not spoil them.
Oct. 26. I walk'd about the Shore almost all Day to find out a place to fix my Habitation, greatly concern'd to secure my self from an Attack in the Night, either from wild Beasts or Men. Towards Night I fix'd upon a proper Place under a Rock, and mark'd out a Semi-Circle for my Encampment, which I resolv'd to strengthen with a Work, Wall, or Fortification made of double Piles, lin'd within with Cables, and without with Turf.
From the 26th. to the 30th. I work'd very hard in carrying all my Goods to my new Habitation, tho' some Part of the time it rain'd exceeding hard.
The 31st. in the Morning I went out into the Island with my Gun to see for some Food, and discover the Country, when I kill'd a She-Goat, and her Kid follow'd me home, which I afterwards kill'd also because it would not feed.
November. 1. I set up my Tent under a Rock, and lay there for the first Night, making it as large as I could with Stakes driven in to swing my Hammock upon.
Nov. 2. I set up all my Chests and Boards, and the Pieces of Timber which made my Rafts, and with them form'd a Fence round me, a little within the Place I had mark'd out for my Fortification.
Nov. 3. I went out with my Gun and kill'd two Fowls like Ducks, which were very good Food. In the Afternoon went to work to make me a Table.
Nov. 4. This Morning I began to order my times of Work, of going out with my Gun, time of Sleep, and time of Diversion, viz. Every Morning I walk'd out with my Gun for two or three Hours if it did not rain, then employ'd my self to work till about Eleven a-Clock, then eat what I had to live on, and from Twelve to Two I lay down to sleep, the Weather being excessive hot, and then in the Evening to work again: The working Part of this Day and of the next were wholly employ'd in making my Table, for I was yet but a very sorry Workman, tho' Time and Necessity made me a compleat natural Mechanick soon after, as I believe it would do any one else.
Nov. 5. This Day went abroad with my Gun and my Dog, and kill'd a wild Cat, her Skin pretty soft, but her Flesh good for nothing: Every Creature I kill'd I took off the skins and preserv'd them: Coming back by the Sea Shore, I saw many Sorts of Sea Fowls which I did not understand, but was surpris'd and almost frighted with two or three Seals, which, while I was gazing at, not well knowing what they were, got into the Sea and escap'd me for that time.
Nov. 6. After my Morning Walk I went to work with my Table again, and finish'd it, tho' not to my liking; nor was it long before I learn'd to mend' it.
Nov. 7. Now it began to be settled fair Weather. The 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, and Part of the 12th. (for the 11th was Sunday) I took wholly up to make me a Chair, and with much ado brought it to a tolerable Shape, but never to please me, and even in the making I pull'd it in Pieces several times. Note, I soon neglected my keeping Sundays, for omitting my Mark for them on my Post, I forgot which was which.
Nov. 13. This Day it rain'd, which refresh'd me exceedingly, and cool'd the Earth, but it was accompany'd with ferrible Thunder and Lightning, which frighted me dreadfully for fear of my Powder; as soon as it was over, I resolv'd to separate my Stock of Powder into as many little Parcels as possible, that it might not be in Danger.
Nov. 14, 15, 16. These three Days I spent in making little square Chests or Boxes, which might hold about a Pound or two Pound, at most, of Powder, and so putting the Powder in, I stow'd it in Places as secure and remote from one another as possible. On one of these three Days I kill'd a large Bird that was good to eat, but I know not what to call it.
Nov. 17. This Day I began to dig behind my Tent into the Rock to make room for my farther Conveniency: Note, Two Things I wanted exceedingly for this Work, viz. A Pick-axe, a Shovel, and a Wheel-barrow or Basket, so I desisted from my Work, and began to consider how to supply that Want and make me some Tools; as for a Pickaxe, I made use of the Iron Crows, which were proper enough, tho' heavy; but the next thing was a Shovel or Spade, this was so absolutely necessary, that indeed I could do nothing effectually without it, but what kind of one to make I knew not.
Nov. 18. The next Day in searching the Woods I found a Tree of that Wood, or like it, which, in the Brasils they call the Iron Tree, for Its exceeding Hardness, of this, with great Labour and almost spoiling my Axe, I cut a Piece, and brought it home too with Difficulty enough, for it was exceeding heavy.
The excessive Hardness of the Wood, and having no other Way, made me a long while upon this Machine, for I work'd it effectually by little and little into the Form of a Shovel or Spade, the Handle exactly shap'd like ours in England, only that the broad Part having no Iron shod upon it at Bottom, it would not last me so long, however it serv'd well enough for the uses which I had occasion to put it to; but never was a Shovel, I believe, made after that Fashion, or so long a making.
I was still deficient, for I wanted a Basket or a Wheelbarrow, a Basket I could not make by any Means, having no such things as Twigs that would bend to make Wicker Ware, at least none yet found out; and as to a Wheel-barrow,
I fancy'd I could make all but the Wheel, but that I had no Notion of, neither did I know how to go about it; besides I had no possible Way to make the Iron Gudgeons for the Spindle or Axis of the Wheel to run in, so I gave it over, and so for carrying away the Earth which I dug out of the Cave, I made me a Thing like a Hodd, which the Labourers carry Morter in, when they serve the Bricklayers.
This was not so difficult to me as the making the Shovel; and yet this, and the Shovel, and the Attempt which I made in vain, to make a Wheel-Barrow, took me up no less than four Days, I mean always, excepting my Morning Walk with my Gun, which I seldom fail'd, and very seldom fail'd also bringing Home something fit to eat.
Nov. 23. My other Work having now stood still, because of my making these Tools; when they were finish'd, I went on, and working every Day, as my Strength and Time allow'd, I spent eighteen Days entirely in widening and deepening my Cave, that it might hold my Goods commodiously.
Note, During all this Time, I work'd to make this Room or Cave spacious enough to accommodate me as a Warehouse or Magazin, a Kitchen, a Dining-room, and a Cellar; as for my Lodging, I kept to the Tent, except that some Times in the wet Season of the Year, it rain'd so hard, that I could not keep my self dry, which caused me afterwards to cover all my Place within my Pale with long Poles in the Form of Rafters leaning against the Rock, and load them with Flaggs and large Leaves of Trees like a Thatch.
December 10th, I began now to think my Cave or Vault finished, when on a Sudden, (it seems I had made it too large) a great Quantity of Earth fell down from the Top and one Side, so much, that in short it frighted me, and not without Reason too; for if I had been under it I had never wanted a Grave-Digger: Upon this Disaster I had a great deal of Work to do over again; for I had the loose Earth to carry out; and which was of more Importance, I had the Seiling to prop up, so that I might be sure no more would come down.
Dec. 11. This Day I went to Work with it accordingly, and got two Shores or Posts pitch'd upright to the Top, with two Pieces of Boards a cross over each Post, this I finish'd the next Day; and setting more Posts up with Boards, in about a Week more I had the Roof secur'd; and the Posts standing in Rows, serv'd me for Partitions to part of my House.
Dec. 17. From this Day to the Twentieth I plac'd Shelves, and knock'd up Nails on the Posts to hang every Thing up that could be hung up, and now I began to be in some Order within Doors.
Dec. 20. Now I carry'd every Thing into the Cave, and began to furnish my House, and set up some Pieces of Boards, like a Dresser, to order my Victuals upon, but Boards began to be very scarce with me; also I made me another Table.
Dec. 24. Much Rain all Night and all Day, no stirring out.
Dec. 25. Rain all Day.
Dec. 26. No Rain, and the Earth much cooler than before, and pleasanter.
Dec. 27. Kill'd a young Goat, and lam'd another so as that I catch'd it, and led it Home in a String; when I had it Home, I bound and splinter'd up its Leg which was broke, N.B. I took such Care of it, that it liv'd, and the Leg grew well, and as strong as ever; but by my nursing it so long it grew tame, and fed upon the little Green at my Door, and would not go away: This was the first Time that I entertain'd a Thought of breeding up some tame Creatures, that I might have Food when my Powder and Shot was all spent.
Dec. 28, 29, 30. Great Heats and no Breeze; so that there was no Stirring abroad, except in the Evening for Food; this Time I spent in putting all my Things in Order within Doors.
January 1. Very hot still, but I went abroad early and late with my Gun, and lay still in the Middle of the Day; this Evening going farther into the Valleys which lay towards the Center of the Island, I found there was plenty of Goats, tho' exceeding shy and hard to come at, however I resolv'd to try if I could not bring my Dog to hunt them down.
Jan. 2. Accordingly, the next Day, I went out with my Dog, and set him upon the Goats; but I was mistaken, for they all fac'd about upon the Dog, and he knew his Danger too well, for he would not come near them.
Jan. 3. I began my Fence or Wall; which being still jealous of my being attack'd by some Body, I resolv'd to make very thick and strong.
N.B. This Wall being describ'd before, I purposely omit what was said
in the Journal; it is sufficient to observe, that I was no less Time
than from the 3rd of January to the 14th of April, working, finishing,
and perfecting this Wall, tho' it was no more than about 24 Yards in
Length, being a half Circle from one Place in the Rock to another Place
about eight Yards from it, the Door of the Cave being in the Center
During this Time, I made my Rounds in the Woods for Game every Day when the Rain admitted me, and made frequent Discoveries in these Walks of something or other to my Advantage; particularly I found a Kind of wild Pidgeons, who built not as Wood Pidgeons in a Tree, but rather as House Pidgeons, in the Holes of the Rocks; and taking some young ones, I endeavoured to bread them up tame, and did so; but when they grew older they flew all away, which perhaps was at first for Want of feeding them, for I had nothing to give them; however I frequently found their Nests, and got their young ones, which were very good Meat.
And now, in the managing my houshold Affairs, I found my self wanting in many Things, which I thought at first it was impossible for me to make, as indeed as to some of them it was; for Instance, I could never make a Cask to be hooped, had a small Runlet or two, as I observed before, but I cou'd never arrive to the Capacity of making one by them, tho? I spent many Weeks about it; I could neither put in the Heads, or joint the Staves so true to one another, as to make them hold Water, so I gave that also over.
In the next Place, I was at a great Loss for Candle; so that as soon as ever it was dark, which was generally by Seven-a-Clock, was oblig'd to go to Bed: I remembered the Lump of Bees-wax with which I made Candles in my African Adventure, but I had none of that now; the only Remedy had was, that when I had kill'd a Goat, sav'd the Tallow, and with a little Dish made of Clay, which I bak'd in the Sun, to which I added a Wick of some Oakum, I made me a Lamp; and this gave me Light, tho' not a clear steady Light like a Candle; in the Middle of all my Labours it happen'd, that rumaging my Things, I found a little Bag, which, as I hinted before, had been fill'd with Corn for the feeding of Poultry, not for this Voyage, but before, as I suppose, when nt my Wall.
The very next Day after this Wall was finish'd, I had almost had all my Labour overthrown at once, and my self kill'd; the Case was thus, As I was busy in the Inside of it, behind my Tent, just in the Entrance into my Cave, I was terribly frighted with a most dreadful surprising Thing indeed; for all on a sudden I found the Earth come crumbling down from the Roof of my Cave, and from the Edge of the Hill over my Head, and two of the Posts I had set up in the Cave crack'd in a frightful Manner; I was heartily scar'd, but thought nothing' of what was really the Cause, only thinking that the Top of my Cave was falling in, as some of it had done before; and for Fear I shou'd be bury'd in it, I run foreward to my Ladder, and not thinking my self safe there neither, I got over my Wall for Fear of the Pieces of the Hill which I expected might roll down upon me: I was no sooner stepp'd down upon the firm Ground, but I plμ-E?à nay, as our English Barley.
It is impossible to express the Astonishment and Confusion of my Thoughts on this Occasion; I had hitherto acted upon no religious Foundation at all, indeed I had very few Notions of Religion in my Head, or had' entertain'd any Sense of any Thing that had befallen me, otherwise than as a Chance, or, as we lightly say, what pleases God; without so much as enquiring into the End of Providence in these Things, or his Order in governing Events in the World: But after I saw Barley grow there, in a Climate which I know was not proper for Corn, and especially that I knew not how it came there, It startl'd me strangely, and I began to suggest, that God had miraculously caus'd this Grain to grow without any Help of Seed sown, and that it was so directed purely for my Sustenance, on that wild miserable Place.
This touch'd my Heart a little, and brought Tears out of my Eyes, and I began to bless my self, that such a Prodigy of Nature should happen upon my Account; and this was the more strange to me, because I saw near it still all along by the Side of the Rock, some other straggling Stalks, which prov'd to be Stalks of Ryce, and which I knew, because I had seen it grow in Africa when I was ashore there.
I not only thought these the pure Productions of Providence for my Support, but not doubting, but that there was more in the Place, I went all over that Part of the Island, where I had been before, peering in every Corner, and under every Rock, to see for more of it, but I could not find any; at last it occur'd to my Thoughts, that I had shook a Bag of Chickens Meat out in that Place, and then the Wonder began to cease; and I must confess, my religious Thankfulness to God's Providence began to abate too upon the Discovering that all this was nothing but what was common; tho' I ought to have been as thankful for so strange and unforseen Providence, as if it had been miraculous; for it was really the Work of Providence as to me, that should order or appoint, that 10 or 12 Grains of Corn should remain unspoil'd, (when the Rats had destroy'd all the rest,) as if it had been dropt from Heaven; as also, that I should throw it out in that particular Place, where it being in the Shade of a high Rock, it sprang up immediately; whereas, if I had thrown it anywhere else, at that Time, it had been burnt up and destroy'd.
I carefully sav'd the Ears of this Corn you may be sure in their Season, which was about the End of June; and laying up every Corn, resolv'd to sow them all again, hoping in Time to have some Quantity sufficient to supply me with Bread; But it was not till the 4th Year that I could allow my self the least Grain of this Corn to eat, and even then but sparingly, as I shall say afterwards in its Order; for I lost all that I sow'd the first Season, by not Observing the proper Time; for I sow'd it just before the dry Season, so that it never came up at all, at least, not as it would ha' done: Of which in its Place.
Besides this Barley, there was, as above, 20 or 30 Stalks of Ryce, which I preserv'd with the same Care, and whose Use was of the same Kind or to the same Purpose, (viz.) to make me Bread, or rather Food; for I found Ways to cook it up without baking, tho' I did that also after some Time. But to return to my Journal,
I work'd excessive hard these three or four Months to get my Wall done; and the 14th of April I closed it up, contriving to go into it, not by a Door, but over the Wall by a Ladder, that there might be no Sign in the Out-side of my Habitation.
April 16. I finish'd the Ladder, so I went up with the Ladder to the Top, and then pull'd it up after me, and let it down in the In-side: This was a compleat Enclosure to men for within I had Room enough, and nothing could come at me from without, unless it could first mount my Wall.
The very next Day after this Wall was finish'd, I had almost had all my Labour overthrown at once, and my self kill'd; the Case was thus, As I was busy in the Inside of it, behind my Tent, just in the Entrance into my Cave, I was terribly frighted with a most dreadful surprising Thing indeed; for all on a sudden I found the Earth come crumbling down from the Roof of my Cave, and from the Edge of the Hill over my Head, and two of the Posts I had set up in the Cave crack'd in a frightful Manner; I was heartily scar'd, but thought nothing' of what was really the Cause, only thinking that the Top of my Cave was falling in, as some of it had done before; and for Fear I shou'd be bury'd in it, I run foreward to my Ladder, and not thinking my self safe there neither, I got over my Wall for Fear of the Pieces of the Hill which I expected might roll down upon me: I was no sooner stepp'd down upon the firm Ground, but I plainly saw it was a terrible Earthquake, for the Ground I stood on shook three Times at about eight Minutes Distance, with three such Shocks, as would have overturn'd the strongest Building that could be suppos'd to have stood on the Earth, and a great Piece of the Top of a Rock, which stood about half a Mile from me next the Sea, fell down with such a terrible Noise, as I never heard in all my Life, I perceiv'd also, the very Sea was put into violent Motion by it; and I believe the Shocks were stronger under the Water than on the Island.
I was so amaz'd with the Thing it self, having never felt the like, or discours'd with any one that had, that I was like one dead or stupify'd; and the Motion of the Earth made my Stomach sick like one that was toss'd at Sea; but the Noise of the falling of the Rock awak'd me as it were, and rousing me from the stupify'd Condition I was in, fill'd me with Horror, and I thought of nothing then but the Hill falling upon my Tent and all my houshold Goods, and burying all at once; and this sunk my very Soul within me a second Time.
After the third Shock was over, and I felt no more for some Time, I began to take Courage, and yet I had not Heart enough to go over my Wall again, for Fear of being buried alive, but sat Still upon the Ground, greatly cast down and disconsolate, not knowing what to do: All this while I had not the least Serious religious Thought, nothing but the common, Lord ha' Mercy upon me; and when it was over, that went away too.
While I sat thus, I found the Air over-cast, and grow cloudy, as if it would Rain; soon after that the Wind rose by little and little, so that, in less than half an Hour, it blew a most dreadful Hurricane: The Sea was all on a Sudden cover'd over with Foam and Froth, the Shore was cover'd with the Breach of the Water, the Trees were torn up by the Roots, and a terrible Storm it was; and this held about three Hours, and then began to abate, and in two Hours more it was stark calm, and began to rain very hard.
All this while I sat upon the Ground very much terrify'd and dejected, when on a sudden it came into my thoughts, that these Winds and Rain being the Consequences of the Earthquake, the Earthquake it self was spent and over, and I might venture into my Cave again: With this Thought my Spirits began to revive, and the Rain also helping to persuade me, I went in and sat down in my Tent, but the Rain was so violent, that my Tent was ready to be beaten down with it, and I was forc'd to go into my Cave, tho' very much afraid and uneasy for fear it should fall on my Head.
This violent Rain forc'd me to a new Work, viz. To cut a Hole thro' my new Fortification like a Sink to let the Water go out, which would else have drown'd my Cave. After I had been in my Cave some time, and found still no more Shocks of the Earthquake follow, I began to be more compos'd; and now to support my Spirits, which indeed wanted it very much, I went to my little Store and took a small Sup of Rum, which however I did then and always very sparingly, knowing I could have no more when that was gone.
It continu'd raining all that Night, and great Part of the next Day, so that I could not stir abroad, but my Mind being more compos'd, I began to think of what I had best do, concluding that if the Island was subject to these Earth-quakes, there would be no living for me in a Cave, but I must consider of building me some little Hut in an open Place which I might surround with a Wall as I had done here, and so make my self secure from wild Beasts or Men; but concluded, if I staid where I was, I should certainly, one time or other, be bury'd alive.
With these Thoughts I resolv'd to remove my Tent from the Place where it stood, which was just under the hanging Precipice of the Hill, and which, if it should be shaken again, would certainly fall upon my Tent: And I spent the two next Days, being the 19th and 20th of April, in contriving where and how to remove my Habitation.
The fear of being swallow'd up alive, made me that I never slept in quiet, and yet the Apprehensions of lying broad without any Fence was almost equal to it; but still when I look'd about and saw how every thing was put in order, how pleasantly conceal'd I was, and how safe from Danger, it made me very loath to remove.
In the mean time it occur'd to me that it would require a vast deal of time for me to do this, and that I must be contented to run the Venture where I was, till I had form'd a Camp for my self, and had secur'd it so as to remove to it: So with this Resolution I compos'd my self for a time, and resolv'd that I would go to work with all Speed to build me a Wall with Piles and Cables, &c. in a Circle as before, and set my Tent up in it when it was finish'd, but that I would venture to stay where I was till it was finish'd and fit to remove to. This was the 21st.
April 22. The next Morning I began to consider of Means to put this Resolve in Execution, but I was at a great loss about my Tools; I had three large Axes and abundance of Hatchets, (for we carried the Hatchets for Traffick with the Indians) but with much chopping and cutting knotty hard Wood, they were all full of Notches and dull, and tho' I had a Grindstone, I could not turn it and grind my Tools too, this cost me as much Thought as a Statesman would have bestow'd upon a grand Point of Politicks, or a Judge upon the Life and Death of a Man. At length I contriv'd a Wheel with a String, to turn it with my Foot, that I might have both my Hands at Liberty: Note, I had never seen any such thing in England, or at least not to take Notice how it was done, tho' Since I have observ'd it is very common there; besides that, my Grindstone was very large and heavy. This Machine cost me a full Week's Work to bring it to Perfection.
April 28, 29. These two whole Days I took up in grinding my Tools, my Machine for turning my Grindstone performing very well.
April 30. Having perceiv'd my Bread had been low a great while, now I took a Survey of it, and reduc'd my self to one Bisket-cake a Day, which made my Heart very heavy.
May 1. In the Morning looking towards the Sea-side, the Tide being low, I saw something lye on the Shore bigger than ordinary, and it look'd like a Cask; when I came to it, I found a small Barrel, and two or three Pieces of the Wreck of the Ship, which were driven on Shore by the late Hurricane, and looking towards the Wreck itself, I thought it seem'd to lye higher out of the Water than it us'd to do; I examin'd the Barrel which was driven on Shore, and soon found it was a Barrel of Gunpowder, but it had taken Water, and the Powder was cak'd as hard as a Stone; however I roll'd it farther on Shore for the present, and went on upon the Sands as near as I could to the Wreck of the Ship to look for more.
When I came down to the Ship I found it strangely remov'd, The Fore-castle which lay before bury'd in Sand, was heav'd up at least Six Foot, and the Stern which was broke to Pieces and parted from the rest by the Force of the Sea soon after I had left rummaging her, was toss'd, as it were, up, and cast on one Side, and the Sand was thrown so high on that Side next her Stern, that whereas there was a beat Place of Water before, so that I could not come within a Quarter of a Mile of the Wreck without swimming, I could now walk quite up to her when the Tide was out; I was surpriz'd with this at first, but soon concluded it must be done by the Earthquake, and as by this Violence the Ship was more broken open than formerly, so many Things came daily on Shore, which the Sea had loosen'd, and which the Winds and Water rolled by Degrees to the Land.
This wholly diverted my Thoughts from the Design of removing my Habitation; and I busied my self mightily that Day especially, in searching whether I could make any Way into the Ship, but I found nothing was to be expected of that Kind, for that all the In-side of the Ship was choack'd up with Sand: However, as I had learn'd not to despair of any Thing, I resolv'd to pull every Thing to Pieces that I could of the Ship, concluding, that every Thing I could get from her would be of some Use or other to me.
May 3. I began with my Saw, and cut a Piece of a Beam thro', which I thought held some of the upper Part or Quarter-Deck together, and when I had cut it thro', I clear'd away the Sand as well as I could from the Side which lay highest; but the Tide coming' in, I was oblig'd to give over for that Time.
May 4. I went a fishing, but caught not ; and having no Victuals to eat, took my Gun, but found my self very weak; however I kill'd a She-Goat, and with much Difficulty got it Home, and broil'd some of it, and eat; I wou'd fain have stew'd it, and made some Broath, but had no Pot.
June 27. The Ague again so violent, that I lay a-Bed all Day, and neither eat or drank. I was ready to perish for Thirst, but so weak, I had not Strength to stand up, or to get my self any Water to drink: Pray'd to God again, but was light-headed, and when I was not, I was so ignorant, that I knew not what to say; only I lay and cry'd, Lord look upon me, Lord pity me, Lord have Mercy upon me: I suppose I did nothing else for two or three Hours, till the Fit wearing off, I fell asleep, and did not wake till far in the Night; when I wak'd, I found my self much refresh'd, but weak, and exceeding thirsty: However, as I had no Water bin my whole Habitation, I was forc'd to lie t?’?dàinto it, but almost full of Water and Sand.
May 8. Went to the Wreck, and carry'd an Iron Crow to wrench up the Deck, which lay now quite clear of the Water or Sand; I wrench'd open two Planks, and brought them on Shore also with the Tide: I left the Iron Crow in the Wreck for next Day.
May 9. Went to the Wreck, and with the Crow made Way into the Body of the Wreck, and felt several Casks, and loosen'd them with the Crow, but could not break them up; I felt also the Roll of English Lead, and could stir it, but it was too heavy to remove.
May 10, 11, 12, 13, 14. Went every Day to the Wreck, and got a great deal of Pieces of Timber, and Boards, or Plank, and 2 or 300 Weight of Iron.
May 15. I carry'd two Hatchets to try if I could not cut a Piece off of the Roll of Lead, by placing the Edge of one Hatchet, and driving it with the other; but as it lay about a Foot and a half in the Water, I could not make any Blow to drive the Hatchet.
May 16. It had blow'd hard in the Night, and the Wreck appear'd more broken by the Force of the Water; but I stay'd so long in the Woods to get Pidgeons for Food, that the Tide prevented me going to the Wreck that Day.
May 17. I saw some Pieces of the Wreck blown on Shore, at a great Distance, near two Miles off me, but resolv'd to see what they were, and found it was a Piece of the Head, but too heavy for me to bring away.
May 24. Every Day to this Day I work'd on the Wreck, and with hard Labour I loosen'd some Things so much with the Crow, that the first blowing Tide several Casks floated out, and two of the Seamens Chests; but the Wind blowing from the Shore, nothing came to Land that Day, but Pieces of Timber, and a Hogshead which had some Brazil Pork in it, but the Salt-water and the Sand had spoil'd it.
I continu'd this Work every Day to the 15th of June, except the Time necessary to get Food, which I always appointed, during this Part of my Employment, to be when the Tide was up, that I might be ready when it was ebb'd out, and by this Time I had gotten Timber, and Plank, and Iron-Work enough, to have builded a good Boat, if I had known how; and also, I got at several Times, and in several Pieces, near 100 Weight of the Sheet-Lead.
June 16. Going down to the Sea-side, I found a large Tortoise or Turtle; this was the first I had seen, which it seems was only my Misfortune, not any Defect of the Place, or Scarcity; for had I happen'd to be on the other Side of the Island, I might have had Hundreds of them every Day, as I found afterwards; but perhaps had paid dear enough for them.
June 17. I spent in cooking the Turtle; I found in her threescore Eggs; and her Flesh was to me at that Time the most savoury and pleasant that ever I tasted in my Life, having had no Flesh, but of Goats and Fowls, since I landed in this horrid Place.
June 18. Rain'd all Day, and I stay'd within. I thought at this Time the Rain felt Cold, and I was something chilly, which I knew was not usual in that Latitude.
June 19. Very ill, and shivering, as if the Weather had been cold.
June 20. No Rest all Night, violent Pains in my Head, and feaverish.
June 21. Very ill, frighted almost to Death with the Apprehensions of my sad Condition, to be sick, and no Help: Pray'd to GOD for the first Time since the Storm off of Hull, but scarce knew what I said, or why; my Thoughts being all confused.
June 22. A little better, but under dreadful Apprehensions of Sickness.
June 23. Very bad again, cold and shivering, and then a violent Head-ach.
June 24. Much better.
June 25. An Ague very violent; the Fit held me seven Hours, cold Fit and hot, with faint Sweats after it.
June 26. Better; and having no Victuals to eat, took my Gun, but found my self very weak; however I kill'd a She-Goat, and with much Difficulty got it Home, and broil'd some of it, and eat; I wou'd fain have stew'd it, and made some Broath, but had no Pot.
June 27. The Ague again so violent, that I lay a-Bed all Day, and neither eat or drank. I was ready to perish for Thirst, but so weak, I had not Strength to stand up, or to get my self any Water to drink: Pray'd to God again, but was light-headed, and when I was not, I was so ignorant, that I knew not what to say; only I lay and cry'd, Lord look upon me, Lord pity me, Lord have Mercy upon me: I suppose I did nothing else for two or three Hours, till the Fit wearing off, I fell asleep, and did not wake till far in the Night; when I wak'd, I found my self much refresh'd, but weak, and exceeding thirsty: However, as I had no Water bin my whole Habitation, I was forc'd to lie till Morning, and went to sleep again: In this second Sleep, I had this terrible Dream.
I thought, that I was sitting on the Ground on the Outside of my Wall, where I sat when the Storm blew after the Earthquake, and that I saw a Man descend from a great black Cloud, in a bright Flame of Fire, and light upon the Ground: He was all over as bright as a Flame, so that I could but just bear to look towards him; his Countenance was most inexpressibly dreadful, impossible for Words to describe; when he stepp'd upon the Ground with his Feet, I thought the Earth trembl'd, just as it had done before in the Earthquake, and all the Air look'd, to my Apprehension, as if it had been fill'd with Flashes of Fire.
He was no sooner landed upon the Earth, but he moved forward towards me, with a long Spear or Weapon in his Hand, to kill me; and when he came to a rising Ground, at some Distance, he spoke to me, or I heard a Voice so terrible, that it is impossible to express the Terror of it; all that I can say, I understood, was this, Seeing all these Things have not brought thee to Repentance, nom thou shalt die: At which Words, I thought he lifted up the Spear that was in his Hand, to kill me.
No one, that shall ever read this Account, will expect that I should be able to describe the Horrors of my Soul at this terrible Vision, I mean, that even while it was a Dream, I even dreamed of those Horrors; nor is it any more possible to describe the Impression that remain'd upon my Mind when I awak'd and found it was but a Dream.
I had alas! no divine Knowledge; what I had received by the good Instruction of my Father was then worn out by an uninterrupted Series, for 8 Years, of Seafaring Wickedness, and a constant Conversation with nothing but such as were like my self, wicked and prophane to the last Degree: I do not remember that I had in all that Time one Thought that so much as tended either to looking upwards toward God, or inwards towards a Reflection upon my own Ways: But a certain Stupidity of Soul, without Desire of Good, or Conscience of Evil, had entirely overwhelm'd me, and I was all that the most hardened, unthinking, wicked Creature among our common Sailors, can be supposed to be, not having the least Sense, either of the Fear of God in Danger, or of Thankfulness to God in Deliverances.
In the relating what is already past of my Story, this will be the more easily believ'd, when I shall add, that thro' all the Variety of Miseries that had to this Day befallen me, I never had so much as one Thought of it being the Hand of God, or that it was a just Punishment for my Sin; my rebellious Behaviour against my Father, or my present Sins which were great; or so much as a Punishment for the general Course of my wicked Life. When I was on the desperate Expedition on the desert Shores of Africa, I never had so as one Thought of what would become of me; or one to od to direct me whether I should go, or to keep me from the Danger which apparently surrounded me, as well from voracious Creatures as cruel Savages: But I was meerly thoughtless of a God, or a Providence; acted like a meer Brute from the Principles of Nature, and by the Dictates of common Sense only, and indeed hardly that.