Εικόνες σελίδας
PDF
Ηλεκτρ. έκδοση

too often degrade the populace, as well as the higher ranks of society; but when this appearance is assumed to flatter pride, or to cover a base action, it degrades mankind below the brute.

The government of Spain is in a great degree arbitrary, it has not the happiness to experience the blessings of those mutual checks, with which Great Britain is blessed, which conduce so much to the happiness of king and subjects.

The treasures of America are, if possible, regularly imported every year to Cadiz and other ports, in vessels well known by the name of galleons, or register ships; but as the Spanish manufactures (owing greatly to the causes above assigned) have not ability to purchase them, other commercial nations have, in reality, the chief advantage; the power of justice may here be said to take place in a remarkable manner, in making their treasure circuitously to fall into other hands; all their attempts effectually to prevent this traffic have been

hitherto unsuccessful. This indolence, and negligence of the Spaniards, has hitherto made it advantageous for other enterprising nations, that such immense treasures should rather belong to Spain than to them. But to the honour of many of the Spanish merchants, be it spoken, that in consequence of their strict integrity, and justice, advan tages have been seldom taken in confiscating the property of merchants belonging to belligerent powers with whom Spain has been involved in war.

*

The city of Cadiz is built on an island connected with the continent by a bridge, it is well walled in, and has a good quay; near it I once fell overboard, and was preserved from injury, though exposed to imminent danger. The town has a handsome appearance from the harbour and bay. The inhabitants often experience the inconveniences of being obliged to obtain supplies of water from the opposite shore, where is a town of considerable note and extent, call. ed St. Mary's.

The view from the bay, in fine weather, is of the first description. From the vicinity of Sevelle, on one side, to the Streights of Gibraltar, on the other, is an extent of many leagues. The principal part between, are Rota, villages, the harbour, shipping, and city of Cadiz; the vast mountain behind the harbour, and the table land from Cadiz, towards the Streights, which, with numerous shipping at anchor, and others sailing in all directions, form prospects plea. singly contrasted, and sweetly harmonizing.

"

During my stay of three months, we were plentifully supplied with fresh beef, from Barbary; fruit and vegetables from Portugal; and fish from Spain.

177

Near the conclusion of 1797, anxious to get to England, I joined the Dolphin at Lisbon; but contrary to my wish, in the ensuing spring, we again entered the Mediterranean, and previous to our further destination, again anchored in Gibraltar Bay-took a further view of this wonderful rock-was much struck with the many

[ocr errors]

wonders of St. Michael's cave, which had escaped my former observation. New scenery, statues, buildings, and animals rose to imagination; and the solemn gloom and awful stillness which pervade every part, except where the droppings interrupt, and add to the effect of the whole; call even the thoughtless to reflection.

F 2

2

CHAP. VI.

Leave Gibraltar-Arrival at Minorca-Observations on the Coast between-Capitulation of Minorca-Description of the Island -Leave Minorca-Arrive at SardiniaReturn to Minorca-Departure for Italy.

HAVING completed stores, and provisions, we joined, in October, an expedition whose destination was supposed to be for the island of Minorca. In about a week we passed Cape Pallos, and close in with the land about Alicant, which is situated at the bottom of several mountains, of which there are several immense ridges, rising above each other, in this neighbourhood; and also about Cape Pallos, and on towards Carthagena. These mountains near the coast serve to repel the violence of the sea winds, which sometimes prevail here. Alicant is a place of considerable extent and trade; its exports are wine, fruit, and several manufactures: and it imports various

« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »