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His collections, during the three years which the voyage lasted, of objects of all descriptions, were immense, even although a part of them was lost, in consequence of an accident that befel the ship. It was for a long time hoped that Solander and himself would indulge the public with an account of them; and it is difficult to imagine what prevented them from doing so. Solander only died in 1782, and he could have employed ten years of his life in this undertaking. Besides their common journal, their notes, and all the drawings made under their inspection, still exist in the Banksian Library. The engraving of a splendid series of plates, intended to extend to two thousand, was begun; but, to the great regret of naturalists, nothing has appeared, at least under the auspices of the authors. Perhaps Mr Banks judged that his treasures would not be the less profitable to science, although he did not publish them himself. One of the most remarkable traits of his character was the generosity with which he communicated his scientific treasures to all who appeared to him worthy of perusing them. Fabricius described all his insects. He gave specimens of all his fishes to our colleague Broussonnet, for the ichthyology which he had commenced. Botanists who wished to see his plants, had free permission to consult his herbaria. Gærtner constantly. profited by this indulgence for his admirable history of fruits and seeds, and Vahl for his Eclogues; and, in these later times, the excellent work of Mr Robert Brown on the Plants of New Holland, a work composed in Sir Joseph Banks's, and in the midst of his collections, has fulfilled, and more than fulfilled, all that could have been hoped from himself. Besides, he distributed, among all the gardens of Europe, the seeds of the South Sea, as in the South Sea he had distributed ours. Lastly, he was satisfied that, in all that could regard immediate utility, the object of his voyage had been as effectually accomplished as it could be. In fact, a multitude of beautiful shrubs, which he first introduced, now ornament our groves and grounds. The Otaheitean cane, which affords more sugar, and ripens more freely, has, in part, repaired the disasters of our colonies; the bread-fruit tree, carried to the warm countries of America, will repay the services which America formerly rendered to us, when it furnished us with the potato; the New Zealand flax, the fi

other plant,

bres of which are more tenacious than those of any
is cultivated among us, and will infallibly prove, one day, an
important acquisition for our marine. Several of our ponds are
embellished with the black swan; the kangaroo and phascolome
are kept in some of our parks; and there is nothing to prevent
their becoming animals of game in our woods, as useful as the
fallow-deer or the rabbit, which were equally exotic animals.
But these are results of little importance compared with the ge-
neral knowledge which this voyage began to afford us of the Pa-
cific Ocean; of the multitude of islands which nature has spread
through it; and of the creatures, in some measure peculiar, with
which they are peopled. New Holland especially, if we except
man and the dog, (and these, without doubt, have arrived in it at a
comparatively recent period, so miserable is the condition in
which they occur there), bears no resemblance, in its organic na-
ture, so to speak, to the rest of the world. It possesses other
animals, often appearing to unite forms which are contrary to
each other; vegetables which seem destined to subvert all our
rules and systems. Within these thirty years, the English have
formed an establishment in the middle of this continent, among
this creation almost as new to Europe as that of another planet
would be. What it has already furnished to science is prodi-
gious, and is a source of general advantage to all nations. With
regard to the advantages which it gives, and will give, to the
mother country, it is not my business to detail them at length;
but every one will perceive what commercial, political, and mili-
tary importance a great European colony, in a temperate zone,
in a healthy and fertile country, placed between Asia and Ame-
rica, and communicating as easily with Peru as with Bengal,
must necessarily assume. This much is certain, that, before
many years elapse, whether it become independent, or remain
subject, it will have multiplied that race of the human species,
the most susceptible of civilization, as extensively as the English
colonies of North America have done.

Such will be, such already are, in a great measure, the results of the voyage of Cook, Banks, and Solander; and the reason is obvious, because the voyage in question, having men of ⚫ scientific attainments embarked in it, was directed with more enlightened views, and conducted with more philosophy, than any that had been made for three centuries.

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I need not say with what eagerness these new argonauts were received on their return. All classes of society were anxious to testify what they felt for them; the King, in particular, shewed them the greatest regard. Friend as he was to botany and agriculture, he received with great pleasure the seeds and plants which Mr Banks presented to him; and, from this time, conceived an affection for our young traveller, which was never afterwards interrupted.

This description of enterprize, so new and so generous, which originated in England, was so much lauded throughout Europe, that the British government could not but consider itself bound to repeat it. In 1772, Captain Cook was to set out upon his second voyage, of all nautical expeditions the most astonishing for the courage and perseverance of those who embarked in it. Mr Banks was also resolved to accompany him anew; Solander was again to be taken out; all the preparations were made; but they demanded, and it was certainly reasonable, to have the conveniency afforded them in the ship, which, without clogging the expedition, might render their exile more comfortable. It is difficult to comprehend how the Captain could resolve to deprive himself of their assistance. Was it jealousy or regret at having his glory divided by men who had so efficiently participated in his labours? Was it the remembrance of some restraints or inconveniences which the respect due to persons of their station in society had occasioned him during his former voyage? We do not pretend to decide. This, however, is certain, that he caused several arrangements which Mr Banks had made in the vessel to be destroyed; and that the latter, in a moment of irritation, renounced all his projects.

I shall not here seek to determine between them. If we reflect that Captain Cook fell out with the two Forsters, who were substituted for Mr Banks and Dr Solander,-that, on the third voyage, he refused to take any naturalist with him, that there have been none employed since in the nautical expeditions of the English and that those who have embarked in ours have very seldom been on good terms with their leaders, it will perhaps be found that the freedom of action, to which men of the closet' are accustomed, can scarcely be reconciled to the severe discipline so necessary in a ship; and then we shall neither have


to blame our two naturalists, nor the great navigator who could not agree with them.

Mr Banks, however, as he could not accompany Cook,,resolved to direct his ardour into another path. The northern countries, and especially Iceland, so remarkable for its volcanic phenomena, presented him with sufficient objects of research. In a few weeks a vessel was freighted, laden with every thing that was necessary for naturalists; and Mr Banks set out on the 12th July 1772, accompanied with his faithful Solander, a Swede, Uno de Troil, afterwards Bishop of Linkoping, and some other persons worthy of taking part in such an enterprise.

A fortunate opportunity occurred to them of visiting, in passing, the island of Staffa, so interesting for the immense mass of basaltic columns of which it is formed; and for the cave of two hundred and fifty feet in depth, entirely surrounded by these columns, the natural regularity of which equals the most surprising efforts of human art. It is singular that this wonder of nature, so near a populous country, had been so little known; but although the island had been named by Buchanan, no person had given any description of its extraordinary structure; and it may be regarded as a discovery of our voyagers.

They soon arrived in Iceland. Here they no longer met with the happy islanders of the South Sea, on whom nature had lavished her gifts. A soil, desolated alike by the fire of volcanoes, and by winters of nine months' duration, the low country bristled almost over its whole extent with naked and sharp rocks, mountains of ice floating in the sea, and which often, by their accumulation in the vicinity of the land, caused the winter to recommence; every thing seems to announce to the Icelanders the malediction of the celestial powers. They bear the impress of the climate; their gravity, their melancholy aspect, form as great a contrast with the gaiety of the South Sea Islanders, as the countries inhabited by the two nations; and yet the natives of Iceland have their enjoyments, and these enjoyments of a superior order. Study and reflection soften their lot. Those great natural edifices of basalt, and vast fountains of boiling water; the stony vegetations which this water produces; the northern lights of a thousand forms and hues, illuminating from

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time these imposing spectacles, afford them a recompence for

their privations, and excite them to meditation. Iceland is per haps the only colony in the world that has formed a more original literature than the mother country, or even modern Europe. It is asserted, that one of her navigators discovered America rrearly five centuries before Columbus; and it is only by consult ! ing her ancient annals, that documents of any authenticity have been found for the history of Scandinavia. Still at the present day, the meanest peasant is instructed in the history of his country; and it is in repeating from memory the songs of their ancient poets, that they pass their long winter evenings.

Our learned caravan employed a month in traversing the island; and Mr Von Troil published a very interesting account of what they observed. As to Mr Banks, always little solicitous about himself, he gave to Mr Pennant, for his Journey to Scot! land, the drawings* which he had caused to be made of othe island of Staffa and its cave, as well as the description which he had taken of them. In Iceland, as in the South Seas and as at Newfoundland, it was sufficient for him that his observations were not lost to the public; and this consideration appears to have satisfied all his wishes. Here, also, he did better than describe; he became to the Icelanders a not less! zealous and a more effective benefactor than to the Otaheiteans. Not only did he draw the attention of the court of Denmark sto them, but watching over their welfare himself, he twice, at his own expence, when they were afflicted with famine, sent cargoes of grain to their island. Like the personages which were deified by the ancient mythology, it might be said of him, that he became a providence to the places which he had once visited su

On his return from two enterprises, in which he had given such splendid proofs of his disinterested, love of science, Mr Banks would naturally find his place in the first ranks of those who cultivate it. Having long been a member of the Royal Society, he now took an active part in its administration and labours. His house, open with equal hospitality to men of science of his own and of other nations, became a sort of aca demy. The welcome of the master,the pleasure of seeing

These drawings are now preserved in the College Museum of Edinburgh. -EDIT.

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