Page:A Picturesque Tour of the Island of Jamaica.djvu/19

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to replace it; and its recapture became, towards the end of 1657, an object of great national concern. Its defenceless state, the dissatisfaction of the English troops, and the exertions making by Cromwell to afford them relief, as well as to augment their numbers, led the Governor of Cuba to believe, that the juncture was then arrived for retrieving the honour of his country, by the restoration of this island to its dominion. Having communicated to the Viceroy of Mexico a scheme built on this idea, and received the sanction and support of that officer, he made preparations for a formidable invasion, and appointed Don Christopher Sosi Arnoldo, who had been governor at the time of its capture, to take the command of the enterprize. On the 8th of May, 1658, thirty companies of Spanish infantry landed at Rio Nuevo, a small harbour on the north side of the island. They were provided with eight months’ provision, ordnance, and ammunition. Twelve days elapsed before D’Oyley, the governor, knew of their landing, and six weeks more intervened before he was able to approach them by sea. During this interval, the Spaniards had established themselves in great force; but D’Oyley at length reaching Rio Nuevo, with seven hundred and fifty of his best soldiers, attacked them in their intrenchments, carried by assault a strong fortress which had been erected on an eminence over the harbour, and compelled the late unfortunate governor to get back as he could to Cuba, after the loss of all his stores, ordnance, ammunition, and colours, and of one-half of the soldiers he had brought with him. After so signal a defeat, the Spaniards made no effort of consequence to reclaim Jamaica. A party of the ancient Spanish inhabitants, however, still lurked in the woods, and Sosi, their governor, had returned to share their fortunes; but a body of their fugitive negroes having surrendered to D’Oyley, informed him where their late masters were sheltered, and joined some troops that were in pursuit of them: thus the Spaniards were entirely routed, and the few that survived, by escaping to Cuba, took their last farewell of a country, their fond attachment to which it is not possible to reflect upon without emotions of pity. The island has remained ever since under the quiet dominion of Great Britain, and must be considered as the most valuable of her Colonies.

The Island of Jamaica is situated about 4,000 miles southwest of England, ninety to the west of St. Domingo, about the same distance to the south of Cuba, and 435 to the north of Carthagena, on the great continent of South America. The centre of Jamaica lies in 18° 12′ north latitude,