Page:The life of Matthew Flinders.djvu/451

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356
LIFE OF MATTHEW FLINDERS

life was despaired of. In May, 1805, having somewhat recovered, he applied to be allowed to depart with several other prisoners of war who were being liberated on parole. Very much to his surprise the permission was accorded. Aken left on May 20th in an American ship bound for New York, the captain of which gave him a free passage; taking with him all the charts which Flinders had finished up to date, as well as the large general chart of Australia, showing the extent of the new discoveries, and all papers relating to the Investigator voyage. There was at this time a general exchange of prisoners of war, and by the middle of August the only English prisoners remaining in Ile-de-France were Flinders, his servant, who steadfastly refused to avail himself of the opportunity to leave, and a lame seaman.