Page:A Voyage to Terra Australis Volume 1.djvu/81

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
Western Coasts.]
lix
INTRODUCTION.

Vlaming.
1688.

Peak of Teneriffe, 16° 45' to the west of Greenwich); where the variation was observed to be 10° 28' west: they afterwards had 25 fathoms, on better ground. On the 29th, they anchored under the island Rottenest, which lies in lat. 31° 50', long. 134° 25';[1] and next day, a piece of wood, which had some time been fixed to the deck of a ship, was found upon the shore; but the nails were then rusted away. Fire wood was abundant here.

Jan. 5. Vlaming went on shore (to the main coast), with eighty-eight armed men, and walked inland to the eastward. There were a few large, and some small trees, from which dropped a kind of gum-lac; but they found nothing which could be used as food: the birds were small cockatoos and green parrots, and both were very shy. At the end of three hours walk they came to a piece of water, which was salt, and upon the beach were footsteps of full-grown persons and of children. No men were seen, but they observed many smokes; and found three deserted huts, so low and ill-constructed as to be inferior to those of the Hottentots.

On the 6th, they divided themselves into three parties : one took to the north, another to the south, and the third went four miles east, more into the interior; but, except one or two decayed huts, they met with nothing. Being returned to the salt lake without finding fresh water, they dug a pit near the side of it, and obtained wherewith to relieve their thirst. The lake had fallen a foot, which shewed it to have a communication with the sea; and they afterwards found the outlet, a little to the southward. No noxious animal of any kind was seen; and after remaining on shore all night,

they returned on board on the 7th. The ships were then anchored

  1. The account in Van Keulen is somewhat different. He says "we steered for the Land of Endragt; and on Dec. 28, got soundings in 63 fathoms, sandy bottom. The ensuing day we had 30 fathoms, and the coast was then in sight. The Island Rottenest, in 32° south latitude, was the land we steered for; and we had from 30 to 10 fathoms; in which last we anchored on a sandy bottom."