Page:The life of Matthew Flinders.djvu/415

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"If it is convenient for you to call upon me at the tavern where I am at present confined, I shall be glad to see you as soon as possible."

Early in the afternoon of the following day Colonel Monistrol came to the inn to take Flinders and Aken before the General, who desired to ask certain questions. The interrogatories were read from a paper, as dictated by Decaen, and Flinders' answers were translated and written down. In the document amongst Decaen's papers the French questions and answers are written on one side of the paper, with the English version parallel; the latter being signed by Flinders. The translation is crude (the scribe was a German with some knowledge of English) but is printed below literally:—

"Questions made to the commanding officier of an English shooner anchored in Savanna Bay, at the Isle of France, on the 24th frimaire 12th year (on the 17th December, 1803) chasing a coaster, which in consequence of the declaration of war between the French Republic and Great Britain, had intention to avoid the poursuit of said shooner. Said shooner carried the next day in the harbour of Port North-West, where she anchored under cartel colours, the commanding officer having declared to the officer of the health boat that his name was Matthew Flinders, and his schooner the Cumberland.

"Demanded: the Captain's name?

"Answered: Matthew Flinders.

"D.: From what place the Cumberland sailed?

"A.: From Port Jackson.

"D.: At what time?

"A.: The Captain does not recollect the date of his departure. He thinks it is on the 20th of September.

"D.: What is the purpose of his expedition?

"A.: His only motive was to proceed on to England