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Voyages in Search of the North-West Passage By Richard Hakluyt Characters: 2129

Updated: 2017-12-01 00:03

The diversity between brute beasts and men, or between the wise and the simple, is, that the one judgeth by sense only, and gathereth no surety of anything that he hath not seen, felt, heard, tasted, or smelled: and the other not so only, but also findeth the certainty of things, by reason, before they happen to be tried, wherefore I have added proofs of both sorts, that the one and the other might thereby be satisfied.

1. First, as Gemma Frisius reciteth, there went from Europe three brethren though this passage: whereof it took the name of Fretum trium fratrum.

2. Also Pliny affirmeth out of Cornelius Nepos (who wrote fifty-seven years before Christ) that there were certain Indians driven by tempest upon the coast of Germany which were presented by the King of Suevia unto Quintus Metellus Celer, then Pro-Consul of France.

3. And Pliny upon the same saith that it is no marvel, though there be sea by the north, where there is such abundance of moisture; which argueth, that he doubted not of a navigable passage that way, through which those

Indians came.

4. And for the better proof that the same authority of Cornelius Nepos is not by me wrested to prove my opinion of the North-West Passage, you shall find the same affirmed more plainly in that behalf by the excellent geographer Dominicus Marius Niger, who showeth how many ways the Indian sea stretcheth itself, making in that place recital of certain Indians that were likewise driven through the north seas from India, upon the coasts of Germany, by great tempest, as they were sailing in trade of merchandise.

5. Also, whiles Frederick Barbarossa reigned Emperor, A.D. 1160, there came certain other Indians upon the coast of Germany.

6. Likewise Othon, in the story of the Goths, affirmeth that in the time of the German Emperors there were also certain Indians cast by force of weather upon the coast of the said country, which foresaid Indians could not possibly have come by the south-east, south-west, nor from any part of Africa or America, nor yet by the north-east: therefore they came of necessity by this our North-West Passage.

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