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clothed with beast skins, as well the men as women, but that the women go somewhat straiter and closer in their garments, than the men do, with their waists girded. They paint themselves with certain roan colours; their boats are made of the bark of birch trees, with the which they fish, and take great store of seals. And as far as we could understand, since our coming thither, that is not their habitation, but they come from the main land, out of hotter" countries to catch the said seals, and other necessaries for their liv
From this exploratory trip, the boats returned to their newly named harbour of Brest, on the 13th. On the 14th, being the Sabbath, service was read, and the next day Cartier continued his voyage, steering southerly, along the coast, which still wore a most barren and cheerless aspect. Much of this part of the narrative is taken up with distances and soundings, and the naming of capes and islands of very little interest at the present day. 'They saw a few huts upon the cliffs on the 18th, and named this part of the coast "Les Granges," but did not stop to form any acquaintance with their tenants. Cape Royal was reached and named the day prior, and is said to be the " greatest fishery of cods there possibly may be, for in less than an hour we took a hundred of them." On the 24th they discovered the island of St. John. They saw myriads of birds upon the group of islands named "Margaulx," five leagues westward of which they discovered a large, fertile, and well-timbered island, to which the name of "Brion" was given. The contrast presented by the soil and productions of this island, compared with the bleak and waste shores they had before encountered, excited their warm admiration; and with the aid of this excitement, they here saw "wild corn," peas, gooseberries, strawberries, damask roses, and parsley, "with other sweet and pleasant herbs." They here also saw the walrus, bear, and wolf.
Very little is to be gleaned from the subsequent parts of the voyage, until they reached the gulf of St. Lawrence. Mists, head winds, barren rocks, sandy shores, storms and sunshine, alternately make up the landscape presented to view. Much caution was evinced in standing off and on an iron bound coast, and the boats were often employed in exploring along the main land. While thus employed near a shallow stream, called the "River of Boats," they saw natives crossing the stream in their canoes, but the wind coming to blow on shore, they were compelled to retire to their vessels, without opening any communication with them. On the following day, while the boats were traversing the coast, they saw a native running along shore after them, who made signs as they supposed, directing them to return towards the cape they had left. But as soon as the boat turned he fled. They landed, however, and putting a
"I underscore the word "hotter," to denote the prevalent theory They were searching for China or the East India.
Knife and a woollen girdle on a staff, as a good-will offering, returned to their vessels.
The character of this part of the Newfoundland coast, impressed them as being greatly superior to the portions which they had previously seen, both in soil and temperature. In addition to the productions found at Brion's Island, they noticed cedars, pines, white elm, ash, willow, and what are denominated "ewe-trees." Among the feathered tribes they mention the "thrush and stock-dove." By the latter term the passenger pigeon is doubtless meant. The "wild corn" here again mentioned, is said to be "like unto rye," from which it may be inferred that it was the zizania, although the circumstance of its being an aquatic plant is not mentioned.
In running along the coast Cartier appears to have been engrossed with the idea, so prevalent among the mariners of that era, of finding a passage to India, and it was probably on this account that he made such a scrupulous examination of every inlet and bay, and the productions of the shores. Wherever the latter offered anything favourable, there was a strong disposition to admiration, and to make appearances correspond with the theory. It must be recollected that Hudson, seventy-five years later, in sailing up the North River, had similar notions. Hence the application of several improper terms to the vegetable and animal productions of the latitudes, and the constant expectation of beholding trees bending with fruits and spices, "goodly trees" and "very sweet and pleasant herbs" That the barren and frigid shores of Labrador, and the northern parts of Newfoundland, should have been characterised as a region subject to the divine curse, is not calculated to excite so much surprise, as the disposition with every considerable change of soil and verdure, to convert it into a land of oriental fruitfulness. It does not appear to have been sufficiently borne in mind, that the increased verdure and temperature, were, in a great measure, owing to the advancing state of the season. He came on this coast on the 10th of May, and it was now July. It is now very well known that the summers in high northern latitudes, although short, are attended with a high degree of heat.
On the 3d of July Cartier entered the gulf to which the name of St Lawrence has since been applied, the centre of which he states to be in latitude 47° 30'. On the 4th he proceeded up the bay to a creek called St. Martin, near bay De Chaleur, where he was detained by stress of weather eight days. While thus detained, one of the ship's boats was sent a-head to explore. They went 7 or 8 leagues to a cape of the bay, where they descried two parties of Indians, " in about 40 or 50 canoes," crossing the channel. One of the parties landed and beckoned them to follow their example, "making a great noise" and showing "certain skins upon pieces of wood"—i. e. fresh stretched skins. Fearing their numbers, the seamen kept aloof. The Indians prepared to follow them, in two canoes, in which movement they were joined by five canoes of the other party, uwho were coming from the sea side." They approached in a friendly manner, "dancing and making many signs of joy, saying in their tongue Nape tondamen assuath."* The seamen, however, suspected their intentions, and finding it impossible to elude them by flight, two shots were discharged among them, by which they were so terrified, that they fled precipitately ashore, "making a great noise." After pausing awhile, the "wild men" however, re-embarked, and renewed the pursuit, but after coming alongside, they were frightened back by the strokes of twc lances, which so disconcerted them that they fled in haste, and made no further attempt to follow.
This appears to have been the first rencontre of the ship's crew with the natives. On the following day, an interview was brought on, by the approach of said "wild men" in nine canoes, which is thus described. "We being advertised of their coming, went to the point where they were with our boats; but so soon as they saw us they began to flee, making signs that they came to traffic with us, showing us such skins as they clothed themselves withal, which are of small value. We likewise made signs unto them, that we wished them no evil, and in sign thereof, two of our men ventured to go on land to them, and carry them knives, with other iron wares, and two red hat to give unto their captain. Which, when they saw, they also came on land, and brought some of their skins, and so began to deal with us, seeming to be very glad to have our iron wares and other things, dancing, with many other ceremonies, as with their hands to cast sea water on their heads. They gave us whatever they had, not keeping any thing, so that they were constrained to go back again naked, and made us signs, that the next day, they would come again and bring more skins with them."
Observing a spacious bay extending beyond the cape, where this intercourse had been opened, and the wind proving adverse to the vessels quitting their harbour, Cartier despatched his boats to examine it, under an expectation that it might afford the desired passage—for it is at all times to be observed that he was diligently seeking the long sought passage to the Indies. While engaged in this examination, his men discovered "the smokes and fires" of " wild men" (the term constantly used in the narrative to designate the natives.) These smokes were upon a small lake, communicating with the bay. An amiable interview took place, the natives presenting cooked seal, and the French making a suitable return "in hatchets, knives and beads." After these preliminaries, which were conducted with a good deal of caution, by deputies from both sides, the body of the men approached in their canoes, for the purpose of trafficking, leaving most of
* In Mr. Gallatin's comparative vocabulary, "Napew" means man, in the Sheshatapoosh or Labrador. It is therefore fair to conclude that these were a party of SheshaUpooeh Indians, whose language proves them to be of the kindred of the great Algonquin family.
except 2 or 3, to flee into the woods. 'By giving a comb and a tm bell to each of the women who had ventured to remain, the avarice of the men was excited, and they quickly caused their women, to the number of about 20, to sally from the woods, to each of whom the same present was made. They caressed Cartier by touching and rubbing him with their hands; they also sung and danced. Their nets were made of a species of indigenous hemp; they possessed also, a kind of n millet" called "kapaige," beans called "Sahu," and nuts called "Cahehya." If any thing was exhibited, which they did not know, or understand, they shook their heads saying "Nohda." It is added that they never come to the sea, except in fishing time, which, we may remark, was probably the cause of ^heir having no lodges, or much other property about them. They would naturally wish to disencumber their canoes as much as possible, in these lummer excursions, that they might freight them back with dried fish. The language spoken by these Gaspe Indians is manifestly of the Iroquois type. "Cahehya," is, with a slight difference, the term for fruit, in the Oneida.
On the 24th July, Cartier set up a cross thirty feet high, inscribed, "Vive le Roy de France." The natives who were present at this ceremony, seem, on a little reflection, to have conceived the true intent of it, and their chief complained of it, in a " long oration," giving them to understand "that the country was his, and that we should not set up any cross, without his leave." Having quieted the old chief's fears, and made use of a little duplicity, to get him to come alongside, they seized two of the natives for the purpose of taking them to France, and on the next day set sail, up the gulf. A fter making some further examinations of the gulf, and being foiled in an attempt to enter the mouth of a river, Cartier turned his thoughts on a return. He was alarmed by the furious tides setting out of the St. Lawrence; the weather was becoming tempestuous, and under these circumstances he assembled his captains and principal men, " to put the question as to the expediency of continuing the voyage." They advised him to this effect. That, considering that easterly winds began to prevail—" that there was nothing to be gotten"—that, the impetuosity of the tides was such "That they did but fall," and that storms and tempests began to reign—and moreover, that they must either promptly return home, or else remain where they were till spring, it was expedient to return. With this counsel he complied. No time was lost in retracing their outward track, along the Newfoundland coast. They reached the port of "White Sands," on the 9th of August. On the 15th, being "the feast of the Assumption of Our Lady," after service, Cartier took his departure from the coast. He encountered a heavy storm, of three days continuance, "about the middle of the sea," and reached the port of St. Malo, on the 5th of September, after an absence of four months and sixteen days.
This comprises the substance of the first voyage of discovery, of which