Page:Armatafragment00ersk.djvu/16

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impetuosity was three times greater, at the least, than even the Rapids above the American Niagara, so that nothing but its almost incredible smoothness could have prevented our ship, though of five hundred tons burthen, from being swept by it under water, as our velocity could not be less, at the lowest computation, than twenty-five or rather thirty miles an hour. The stream appeared evidently to owe its rapidity to compression, though not wholly to the compression of land, its boundary on one side, if boundary it ought to be called, appearing rather like Chaos and Old Night; and what was most striking and extraordinary, we could see from the deck, not above two ships’ length from us, another current running with equal force in the opposite direction, but separated from our’s by pointed rocks, which appeared all along above the surface, with breakers dashing over them. Neither of the channels, as far as my eye could estimate their extent, were above fifty yards wide, nor at a greater distance from each other, and they were so even in their directions, thatwe