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One can arrive at certain conclusions from these tables -that Drake chose a better time of the year for reaching southern latitudes, and so was saved a prolonged halt there; that though both traversed the Straits in the same month Drake was more fortunate in the weather; that in the run across the Pacific, despite his long voyage up the west coast, Drake on the shorter route made as fast sailing as Magellan; that on the voyage home from the East Indies their times were identical to the Cape, but Drake finished more strongly; and that though he traversed about 3500 miles more in the Pacific and 1000 miles more in the Atlantic, he completed his world voyage in about two months shorter time. Yet despite Drake's achievement, and despite the fact that improvements in ship construction in the intervening half-century were negligible, one cannot forget that Magellan was the pioneer, that Drake reaped honour and wealth from his voyage, that Magellan won nothing for himself except an unknown grave in an island of savages and a strait called after his name in the loneliest spot in all the seven seas.

brought the islands within her side of the line of the Pope's donation, and Portugal was not in a position to protest. That country had spent herself, and England, the new rival, was still regarded with contempt. Instead of looking to her sea defences Spain assumed her own inviolability. Even when Thomas Cavendish in the year 1586 followed on Drake's tracks, she failed to take her lesson to heart. Cavendish had set out from Plymouth with three ships-the Desire, 140 tons; Content, 60 tons; and Gallant, 40 tons. He had reached the Straits at a time of the year when he could push through without the halt that Magellan and Drake had been obliged to make. He entered the Straits in 218 days as compared with Drake's 250 days, but took six weeks. in getting through. On the passage he met evidence of Spain's futile effort to control the outlets of the Pacific by land instead of by sea command, a migratory body of forty half-starved Spaniards and two women, the survivors of more than 300 souls who had been sent to found at the narrows of the Straits King Philip's City, and had speedily succumbed to the rigours of the climate, disease, and the entire lack of proper means of subsistence. Cavendish visited the town, and found it cumbered with corpses. He rechristened it "the Town of Famine," and in "Port Famine the name

It is worth while touching on the subsequent history of Spain in the Pacific. Possessing a monopoly of the science of map-making, she juggled the maps of these seas so as to show the Philippines twentyfive degrees more to the east than the reality. Thus she remains to-day. Cavendish's

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own expedition was anything to reach the Cape of Good but well found, and his men Hope died somewhere near had to live partly on shell- Ascension. fish and penguins till they reached warmer climes. He imitated Drake's exploits on the west coast, though through foolhardiness he lost many men on land, and had to sink one of his own vessels for lack of men to man it. A second was lost later. His captures were even more lucrative than Drake's, but he acted more ruthlessly. From near San Francisco he struck across the Pacific on 19th November 1587, and taking a more northerly route than Drake touched Magellan's Ladrones, and reached the Philippines in fifty-six days -a contrast to Drake's eightyfour. From Java to the Cape of Good Hope occupied sixtynine days, but the total run from the East Indies occupied exactly the same time as Drake's; he had completed the circumnavigation in two years fifty-one days, more than seven months faster than Drake -a remarkable achievement, for only eight years elapsed between the two performances. The time was saved mainly by running directly through the Straits and by wasting no time in the East Indies. It is no wonder that coming as it did after the defeat of the Armada, it became topic for many ballads, but tragedy followed when he renewed the attempt four years later. Halfway through the Straits he was driven back by a storm, and in an effort


Not taught by the futility of the foundation of King Philip's City, and by Cavendish's raid, Spain still attempted to defend herself by land fortifications. In the year 1611 she fortified Monterey on the Californian coast as a port of refuge for galleons coming from Manila, but this not being their terminal port, when they put to sea again for Acapulco the same danger existed. The parallel to the use made of Plymouth during the Great War for the discharge of merchant ships is evident a use dictated by the impossibility of securing immunity upChannel. Spanish America could, however, put up with occasional losses of shipping, for no continued interference could result from spasmodic attacks carried on by English ships operating so far from their base. The wealth that she was reaping was enormous. "The Asiatic trade carried out by the annual voyage of a galleon across the Pacific brought more wealth into circulation in New Spain than did the entire Atlantic trade." Manila had become the great entrepôt for the products of China and India, but New Spain was merely a conduit for the mother country, who, as exhausting European wars depleted her own exchequer, kept drawing upon her colonial possessions for gold and still more gold. The discovery and an


nexation of the Philippines by Magellan did more than anything else ultimately to bring about the revolt of Spain's American possessions: Spain failed to defend their western seaboards, and at the same time prevented them from accumulating those funds which would have enabled them to do so for themselves.

In the seventeenth century the Dutch equally with the English were busily occupied smuggling goods into New Spain from both coasts. In the the eighteenth century the buccaneers flourished exceedingly in these seas, and finally the Spanish secret charts of the Pacific routes were captured by Lord Anson on board a galleon. The Dutch and the French continued a trading penetration, and the last blow of all came when Behring the Russian discovered the Strait that bears his name, and Russians and British began to appropriate the North Pacific and its rich fur trade. Spain's circle was narrowing. She fortified as the outposts of the Pacific San Francisco, Tahiti, and the Falkland Islands, but she did not hold them by the only way in which they could

be secure-namely, sea power. Her strength had passed away long before her possessions fell, and the absorption of the last by the United States thirty years ago was really an anachronism. The Portuguese, too, had disappeared centuries before from the western side of the Pacific. They had won their ascendancy merely as traders and discoverers, not as conquerors, and the Dutch, moving seawards in their newfound liberty (a liberty which the English found developing into arrogance and rapacity in their contact with them in the Far East), gradually ousted the Portuguese from Java, Sumatra, and the islands of the East. Vasco da Gama, Magellanthey shed lustre on the countries that sent them, they possessed vision and daring greater than the English navigators who followed them, yet because the pioneer countries failed to realise or had not the inborn genius to realise the basis on which such discoveries must be consolidated, the English were to be their heirs, for England alone continued to look seawards, and was not led away by fantastic dreams of Continental conquest.



THERE used to be great rivalry among the midshipmen of the various ships of the Mediterranean squadron, and many were the matches-shooting, riding, boxing, pulling, swimming, diving, and gymnastics-got up by the supporters and backers of "young gentlemen " who excelled at any of these sports. The Undefeated, for instance, had a champion rider who fancied himself not a little at gymkhana meetings; the Gorgeous had a very fast swimmer who claimed to be unbeaten; the Pugnacious boasted of a bruiser on whom his messmates were ready to put their shirts; then the Unfathomable's were prepared to back their deep diver against all comers, and the justly famous athlete and contortionist of the Sinuous feared no rival; while the shooting team of the Argus had held the fleet gun-room shooting cup for two years running; and the Flagship held the palm only for boat-pulling, and that was due largely to her possession of the champion pulling cutter, affectionately known as Nancy Dawson. There was therefore, as may be imagined, a strong desire in every gun-room to capture the laurels held by others for themselves, and this covetousness was especially marked on board the Flagship.

Among the midshipmen in this last mentioned ship was one Sartoris. He was only fifteen years old when he joined the ship straight from the Britannia about a year before my story commences, so was still very much a a "junior midshipman "; a growing lad, thin as a lath, though with the appetite of a boa-constrictor, innocent-looking as a baby and of a quiet and retiring appearance on the surface. He was at once bitten with the spirit of emulation and determined to excel in some branch of sport, in the interest of the ship. But what line was he to take? He was not big or strong enough for the racing boat's crew (though he was getting on in height, having shot up seven inches during the year he had been in the ship); he was a poor hand at boxing; he could not afford to keep a pony, though he was a good rider; he was a first-class shot, but not a

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himself, he missed no opportunity for practice, and was in the water as often and for as long as possible on every occasion. His first summer in the ship had already shown him that he could hold his own, so far as speed went, with any one in the gun-room of the Flagship except onethe senior midshipman,-and it was a red-letter day when he overtook this fellow in the water and ducked him. Not only that, but he was able successfully to evade the inevitable reprisals, by means of superior speed which he had attained by observing the methods employed by the said senior snotty and improving upon them. In the same way he taught himself the art of swimming under water and deep diving, in which he copied the style of Brennan, another midshipman, who had been born and brought up in the West Indies and was like a fish under water. They all used to practise diving for eggs alongside the ship, and after some time Sartoris found that he could generally get an egg that some one else had failed at, he diving from the surface as soon as the unsuccessful candidate had come up to blow and had signified a miss.

One day, without saying anything to any one, he attempted to dive under the ship-down one side and up the other. This first try was made right aft, just before the propellers, where the width of the ship

was negligible, and he found it a simple matter. So he tried again a little farther forward where the beam was greater, and again succeeded without difficulty. But when he came to the broadest part of the ship, which meant a swim across of nearly a hundred feet at a depth of about thirty feet, he decided to leave it until the following day.

And when the next day came and he went down and encountered the bilge keel, he thought of the one on the other side of the ship. It was a dull day, and there was very little light down there and-andyes, he funked it and came up again the same side he had gone down on, and was thoroughly ashamed of himself and was glad he had told nobody of his intentions.

Those bilge keels worried him. It would be very awkward to barge up against one with one's head as one was coming up the other side, and the chances were that one would remain the wrong side of it, permanently. He must find some scheme of getting the better of that second bilge keel. He wouldn't be done.

And then a bright idea struck him while he was diving for an egg that two fellows had missed, one after the other. The egg had got pretty deep before the second chap-it was Brennan-had given it up, and Sartoris had gone after it in pure bravado. But having gone, he determined to get it, even if he had to go to the

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