Page images
PDF
EPUB

mit it into bottles, without which you cannot expect a preserve it sweet. You ought also to carry with you good tea, ground coffee, chocolate, wine of that sort which you like best, cider, dried raisins, almonds, sugar, capilaire, citrons, rum, eggs dipped in oil, portable soup, bread twice baked. With regard to poultry, it is almost useless to carry any with you, unless you resolve to undertake the office of feeding and fattening them yourself. With the little care which is taken of them on board a ship, they are al. most all sickly, and their flesh is as tough as leather.

All sailors entertain an opinion, which undoubt edly originated formerly from a want of water, and when it has been found necessary to be sparing of it, that poultry never knew when they had drank enough, and that when water is given them at disvretion, they generally kill themseives by drinking "eyond measure. In consequence of this opinion, they give them water only once in two days, and even then in small quantities: but as they pour this water into troughs inclining on one side, which occasions it to run to the lower part, it thence happens that they are obliged to mount one upon the back of another in order to reach it; and there are some which cannot even dip their beaks in it. Thus continually tantalized and tormented by thirst, they are unable to digest their food, which is very dry, and they soon fall sick and die. Some of them are found thus every morning, and are thrown into the sea; while those which are killed for the table are scarcely ft to be eaten. To remedy this inconvenience, it will be necessary to divide their troughs into small com. partments, in such a manner that each of them may be capable of containing water; but this is seldoin or never done. On this account, sheep and hogs are to be considered as the best fresh provisions that one can have at sea; mutton there, being in general very good, and pork excellent.

It may happen that some of the provisiors and stores, which I have recommended, may become almost useless, by the care which the captain has taken to lay in a proper stock: but in such a case you may dispose of it to relieve thc poor passengers

who, paying less for their passage, are stowed ammng the common sailors, and have no right to the caplain's provisions, except such part of them as is used for feeding the crew. These passengers are sometimes sick, melancholy, and dejected ; and there are often women and children among them, neither of whom have any opportunity of procuring those things which I have menticned, and of which perhaps they

ve the greatest need. By distributing amongst them a part of your superfuity, you may be of the great est assistance to them. You inay restore their health, save their lives, and in short render them happy; which always affcrds the liveliest sensation to a feel ing mind.

The most disagreeable thing at sea is the cookery; for there is noi, properly speaking, any professed cook on board. The worst sailoris generally chosen for that pur. pose, who forthe most part is equally dirty. Hencecomes the proverb used among English sailors, that God sends meat, and the devil sends cooks. Those, however, who have a better opinion of Providence, will thinks otherwise. Knowing that sea a'r, and the exercise or motion which they receive from the rolling of tho ship, have a wonderful effect in whetting the appe. tite, they will say, that Providence has given sailors bad cooks to prevent them from eating 100 much; or that, knowing they would have bad cooks, he has given them a good appetite to prevent thein froin dy ing with hunger. However, it you have no conti dence, in these succours of Providence, you may yourself, with a lamp and a boiler, by the help of a litlle spirits of wine, prepare somne food, such as soup, hash, &c. A small oven made of tin-plate is not ad piece of furniture ; your servant nay roast in it

piece of mutton or pork. If you are ever tempted o eat salt beef, which is often very good, you will find that cider is the best liquor to quench the thirst generally caused by salt ineat or salt fish. Sea-bis. cuit, which is too hard for the teeth of some people, Kay, be softened by stceping it; but bread double baked is best ; for being niade of good loaf-bread cut into slices, and baked a second time, it readily im. bibes water, becomes soft, and is easily digested in

ed.

consequently forms excellent nourishment, much su. ovrior to that of biscuit, which has not been ferment.

I must here observe, that this double-bakeci bread was originally the real biscuit prepared to keep at sea; for the word biscuit, in French, signifies twice baked. Peas often boil badly, and do not liecomo soft; in such a case, by putting a two-pound sto into the kettle, the rolling of the vessel, by means o his bullet, will convert the peas into a porridge, lik Dustard.

Having often seen soup, when put upon the table at sea in broad hat dishes, thrown out on every side by the rolling of the vessel, I have wished that our tin-men would make our soup-basins with divisions or compartments; forming small plates, proper for containing suup for one person only. By this disposition, the sour, in an extraordinary roll, would not be thrown out of the plate, and would not fall into the breasts of those who are at table, and scald them. Havirg entertained you with these things of little inportance. permit me now to conclude with somne general retiections upon navigation.

When navigation is employed only for transporting necessary provisions from one country, whero they abound, to another where they are iranting : when by this it prevents famines, which were so frequeni and so faial before it was invented and be. came so common; we cannot help considering it as one of those art which contribute most to the hap. piness of mankind. But when it is employed to transport things of no utility, or articles of luxury, it is then uncertain whether the advantages resultin from it are sufficient to counter-balarne the misfor unes it occasioned by exposing the lives of so man ndividuals upon the vast ocean. And when it i used to plunder vessels and transport slaves, it is evidently only the dreadful means of increasing those calamitics which afflict human nature.

One is astonished to think on the number of ves. sels and inen who are daily exposed in going to bring

• It is derived from "bio" pain, “cuit" baked.

us?

tea from China, coffee from Arabia, and sugar and tobacco from America ; all commodities which our ancestors lived very well without. The sugar trade employs nearly a thousand vessels ; and that of tobaccc almost the same number. With regard to the utility of tobacco, little can be said; and, with regard to sugar, how much more meritorious would it be to sacrifice the momentary pleasure which wo receive from drinking it once or twice a-day in our on, than 10 encourage the numberless crueltjes that are continually exercised in order to procure it for

A celebrated French moralist said, that, when he considered the wars which we foment in Africa to get negroes, the great number who of course perish in these wars: the multitude of those wretches who die in their passage, by disease, bad air, and bad provisions; and, lastly, how many perish by the cruel treatment they meet with in a state of slavery; when he saw a bit of sugar, he could not help ima. gining it covered with spots of human blood. But, had he added to these considerations the wars which we carry on against one another, to take and retake the islands that produce this commodity, he would not have seen the sugar simply spotted with blood, ne would have beheld it entirely tinged with it.

These wars make the maritime powers of Europe, and the inhabitants of Paris and London, pay mucb dearer for their sugar than those of Vienna, though they are almost three hundred leagues distant froin from the sea. A pound of sugar, indeed, costs the foriner not only the price which they give for it, but also what they pay in taxes, necessary to support he feels ar:d armies which serve to defend and one vect the countries that produce it.

Sir,
Your most obedient and
Very humble servant,

B. FRANKIJK

ON LUXURY, IDLENESS, AND

INDUSTRY.
From a Letter to Benjamin Vaughan, Esq.

written in 1784. It is wonderful how preposterously the affairs of his world are managed." Naturally one would ima. gine that the interest of a few individuals should give way to general interest : but individuals manage their affairs with so much more application, industry, and address, than the public do theirs, that general interest most commonly gives way to particular. We as semble parliaments and councils, to have the benefit of their collected wisdom; but we necessarily have, at the same time, the inconvenience of their collected passions, prejudices, and private interests. By the help of these, artful men overpower their wisilom, and dupe its possessors; and if we may judge by the acts, arrests, and edicts, all the world over, for regulating commerce, an assembly of great men is the greatest fool upon earth.

I have not yet, indeed, thought of a remedy for luxury. I am not sure that in a great state it is ca. pable of a remedy; nor that the evil is in itself always so great as is represented. Suppose we include the definition of luxury all unnecessary expense, and then let us consider whether laws to prevent such expense are possible to be executed in a great country, and whether, if they could be executed, our people generally would be a happier, or even richer.” Is not the hope of being one day able to purchase and njoy luxuries a great spur to labour and industry? May not luxury, therefore, produce more than i

onsumes, if, without such a spur, people would be, as they are naturally enough inclined to be, lazy and Indolent. To this purpose I remember a circum

• Member of parliament for the borough of Calne, in Wiltshire between whom and our author there subsisted a very close frioada thin.

« PreviousContinue »