« НазадПродовжити »
naturally be anticipated, do not agree the place where it had disappeared. It in every minute particular, as the ap- did not seem more shy in consequence pearance of the animal would neces- of the shot, but continued playing on sarily assume various aspects, accord- the water as before. The seventh ing to its position, the extent of its witness observed it on the 17th day body visible at one time, and the ra- of the month, extended on the water pidity of its motion ; but in regard to to the length of from forty to sixty its great size and snake-like form they feet, with its head raised about a foot all agree.
above the surface. It remained still The person who makes the first de- for some time, and then started off position saw it for nearly half an hour, with great velocity. Colour very dark. at a distance of 250 yards when near- The eighth witness saw it on the est. At that distance he could not evening of the same day; he came take in the two extremes with his glass within two oars length of it, but there at one view. He saw eight different was not sufficient light to enable him portions or bunches, which he consi- to give any description. In length it ders as caused by the vertical motion was at least fifty feet, and appeared of the animal. The size is not speci- straight. The ninth witness observed fied. The second witness depones, it the next day, while in a sail boat, that on the 10th day of August he ob- coming out of a cave, and immediateserved a strange marine animal, which ly hove to. It passed under the stern he believed to be a serpent. It con- of the boat, and then turning towards tinued in sight for an hour and a half, him again, it crossed by the boat's bow. and moved through the water with He saw it fired at, and thought it great rapidity-at the rate of a mile in was hit, as it afterwards appeared more two, or at most three, minutes. He shy. The length was considered to be observed the same animal on the 23d about seventy feet. The form of the of the same month. It then lay per- curve, when it turned in the water, fectly still, extended on the water, and resembled a staple ; the head seemed shewed about fifty feet of its body. to approach towards the body for some Colour dark brown. The third wit- feet, then the head and tail appeared ness saw it in the same place, and moving rapidly in opposite directions, judged it to be between eighty and and when these were on parallel lines, ninety feet in length, with a head they appeared not more than two or formed somewhat like that of a rattle- three yards apart. The last deposisnake, but nearly as large as that of a tion contained in the American Report, horse. At one time it shewed about being one of the most detailed and fifty distinct portions of its body, and particular, we shall quote it at full appeared rough and scaly. He saw length. him on three different days, and on the 13th of August it was visible al
“ I, Elkanah Finney of Plymouth, in most the whole day. When it moved and say : That about the 20th of June
the county of Plymouth, mariner, testify on the surface of the water, its motion A. D. 1815, being at work near my house, was slow, at times playing about in which is situated near the sea-shore in Plycircles, and sometimes moving nearly mouth, at a place called Warren's Cove, straight forward. The fourth witness where the beach joins the main land; my saw it on the 14th August, when it son, a boy, came from the shore, and inshewed about forty feet. When look- formed me of an unusual appearance on the ing at it through a glass, he saw it surface of the sea in the cove. I paid little open its mouth, which appeared like attention to his story at first; but as he perthe mouth of a serpent.
sisted in saying that he had seen something The fifth
very remarkable, I looked towards the cove, and sixth witnesses also saw it on that where I saw something which appeared to day, when the latter was within a dis- the naked eye to be drift sea-weed. I then tance of thirty feet. He fired his gun, viewed it through a perspective glass, and loaded with ball, at its head, and was in a moment satisfied that it was some thought he must have hit it, as he aquatic animal, with the form, motion, and took good aim. When he had fired, appearance of which I had hitherto been unthe monster immediately turned round, acquainted. It was about a quarter of a as if it intended coming towards him, mile from the shore, and was moving with but it sunk down, and going directly appeared to be about thirty feet in length;
great rapidity to the northward. It then under the boat, made its appearance the animal went about half a mile to the gain, at about a hundred yards from northward ; then turned about, and while
I saw no
turning, displayed a greater length than I be amply sufficient to dispel the doubts had before seen ; I supposed at least an even ot' the most sceptical, and the sahundred feet. It then came towards me, tisfactory manner in which the opiin a southerly direction, very rapidly, until nions of Pontoppidan, and the writers he was in a line with me, when he stopped, who preceded him, have been thus conand lay entirely still on the surface of the water. I then had a good view of him firmei, should render us extremely through my glass, at the distance of a quar- cautious in considering such opinions ter of a mile. His appearance in this situa- as vague and hypothetical, merely betion was like a string of buoys. I saw per- cause they do not accord with the haps thirty or forty of these protuberances measure of our own experience. or bunches, which were about the size of a We shall conclude our quotation on barrel. The head appeared to be about six this subject by the following extracts. or eight feet long, and where it was connected with the body was a little larger than the Honourable Lonson Nash, one of
The first is from a letter written by the body. His head tapered off to the size the committee appointed by the Linof a horse's head. I could not
discern any næan
Society of New England; the mouth. But what I supposed to be his under jaw had a white stripe extending the other from a communication by the whole length of the head, just above the Rev. William Jenks, addressed to
While he lay in this situation, he Judge Davis, the president of the Soappeared to be about a hundred or a hun- ciety. dred and twenty feet long. The body appeared to be of a uniform size.
“ I have seen and conversed with the part of the animal which I supposed to be woman, who was said to have seen the sera tail. I therefore thought he did not dis- pent dormant on the rocks, near the water, cover to me his whole length. His colour to whom you refer in yours; but she can was a deep brown or black. I could not give no material evidence. She says that discover ans eyes, mane, gills, or breathing she saw something, resembling a large log holes. I did not see any tins or legs. The of wood, on the rocks, on the extreme eastanimal did not utter any sound, and it did ern point of Ten Pound island (a small not appear to notice any thing. It remain- island in our harbour), resting partly on ed still and motionless for five minutes or the rocks, and partly in the water. The more. The wind was light, with a clear distance was about half a mile. She took sky, and the water quite smooth. He then a glass, looked at the object, and saw it moved to the southward ; but not with so
Her attention was for a short time rapid a motion as I had observed before. arrested, by some domestic avocation, and He was soon out of my sight. The next when she looked for the object again, it had morning I rose very early to discover him. disappeared. There was a fresh breeze from the south, You request a detailed account of my obwhich subsided about eight o'clock. It then servations relative to the serpent. I saw him became quite calm, when I again saw the on the 14th ultimo, and when nearest, I animal about a mile to the northward of judged him to be about two hundred and my house, down the beach. He did not fifty yards from me. At that distance I display so great a length as the night be- judged him (in the largest part) about the fore, perhaps not more than twenty or size of a half barrel, gradually tapering tothirty feet.
He often disappeared, and was wards the two extremes. Twice I saw him gone five or ten minutes under water. I with a glass only for a short time, and at thought he was diving or fishing for his other times with the naked eye for nearly food. He remained in nearly the same si- half an hour. His colour appeared nearly tuation, and thus employed, for two hours. black_his motion was vertical. When he I then saw him moving off, in a north-east moved on the surface of the water, the track direction, towards the light- house. I could in his rear was visible for at least half a not determine whether its inotion was up mile. and down, or to the right and left. His His velocity, when moving on the surquickest motion was very rapid ; I should face of the water, I judged was at the rate suppose at the rate of fifteen or twenty miles of a mile in about four minutes. When an hour. Mackerel, manhaden, herring, immersed in the water, his speed was greatand other bait fish, abound in the cove, er, moving, I should say, at the rate of a where the animal was seen.
mile in two or at inost three minutes. When (Signed) ELKANAH FINNEY.” moving under water you could often trace There are several other affidavits him by the motion of the water on the surequally satisfactory in regard to the face, and from this circumstance I conclude occurrence of this extraordinary crea
he did not swim deep. He apparently went ture, with the whole of which, how- draw a line. When he changed his course,
as straight through the water as you could ever, we do not consider it necessary it diminished his velocity but little—the two that we should trouble our readers. extremes that were visible appeared rapidly What we have already written must moving in opposite directions, and when
they came parallel, they appeared not more to be an exaggeration. A gentleman of inthan a yard apart. With a glass I could not telligence (Rev. Alden Bradford of Wiscastake in, at one view, the two extremes of the set, now Secretary of the Commonwealth), animal that were visible. I have looked at inquired of Mr Cummings whether the ape vessel at about the same distance, and pearance might not be produced by a num. could distinctly see forty-five feet. If he ber of porpoises following each other in a should be taken, I have no doubt that his train; but Mr Cummings asserts, that the length will be found seventy feet at least, animal held its head out of the water about and I should not be surprised, if he should five feet till he got out to sea ; for when be found one hundred feet long. When I seen he was going out of the bay, and Mr saw him, I was standing on an eminence, Cummings was ascending it. The colour on the sea shore, elevated about thirty feet was a bluish green about the head and neck, above the surface of the water, and the sea but the water rippled so much over his body was smooth.
that it was not possible to determine its tint. If I saw his head, I could not distinguish The shape of the head was like that of a it from his body; though there were sea- common snake, flattened, and about the faring men near me, who said that they size of a pail
. He was seen approaching, could distinctly see his head. I believe passing, and departing. Till this, Mr they spoke truth; but not having been Cummings was as incredulous, in respect to much accustomed to look through a glass, its existence, as many of his neighbours. I was not so fortunate.
The weather was calm, and it was the I never saw more than seven or eight dis- month of August, in which month, Mr tinct portions of him above the water at Cummings remarks, that as far as he has any one time, and he appeared rough; heard, the Serpent makes his appearance on though I supposed this appearance was pro- the coast.' duced by his motion. When he disappear. I am inclined to suppose, that Mr Cumed, he apparently sunk directly down like a mings' account is that, which in one of the rock."
public papers was lately alluded to, as hav. The information conveyed by Mring been communicated to the American Jenks is extracted from manuscript Academy of Arts and Sciences, but mislaid. notes kept by him in America, and the (then of Bath, now an attorney of Boston),
Mr Charles Shaw, letter which contains them is dated informed me, that a Capt. Lillis, with whom September 17, 1817.
he had sailed, observed cursorily in conver“ • June 28th, 1809. The Rev. Mr Abra- sation, that he had seen off the coast a very ham Cummings,' who has been much em- singular fish; it appeared, said he, more ployed in missions in the district of Meine, like a snake than a fish, and was about and navigated his own boat among the forty feet long. It held its head erect, had islands, &c. in the discharge of his duty, no mane, and looked like an ordinary ser* informs me,' in conversation, which was pent. He asked Mr Shaw if he had ever immediately written from his lips, that in seen, or read, or heard of such an aniPenobscot bay has been occasionally seen mal ? within these thirty years, a Sea Serpent, About two years after hearing this, while supposed to be about sixty feet in length, on a journey to Indian Old Town, as one and of the size of a sloop's mast. Rev. Mr of the Massachusetts Commissioners to in. Cummings saw him, in company with his duce the Indians to cultivate their lands, I wife and daughter, a young lady of Belfast, had opportunity to make further inquiry, Martha Spring ; and judged he was about and find in my journal the following entry : three times the length of his boat, which is • Sept. 10, 1811. Having heard to-day twenty-three feet. When he was seen this further testimony respecting the Sea Ser. time he appeared not to notice the boat, pent of Penobscot. A Mr Staples of Prosthough he was distant, as nearly as could pect, of whom I inquired as I passed, was be ascertained, but about fifteen rods. Mr told, by a Mr Miller of one of the islands Cummings observes, that the British saw of the bay, that he had seen it; and it him in their expedition to Bagaduse ; that was as big as a sloop's boon, and about sixty the inhabitants of Fox and Long Islands or seventy feet long.' He told me also, that have seen such an animal, and that a Mr about 1780, as a schooner was lying at the Crocket saw two of them together about mouth of the river, or in the bay, one of twenty-two years since. When he was seen these enormous creatures leaped over it beby the inhabitants of Fox Island, two per- tween the masts—that the men ran into the ons were together at both times. People hold for fright, and that the weight of the also of Mount Desert have seen the mon- serpent sunk the vessel, “ one streak,' or ster. One of those which were seen by Mr plank. The schooner was of about eighteen Crocket was smaller than that seen by Mr tons.' Cummings, and their motion in the sea ap
Having, we trust,' by means of the peared to be a perpendicular winding, and not horizontal. The British supposed the length preceding extracts and observations, of that, which they saw, to be three hun. sufficiently cleared away all doubts dred feet, but this Mo Cummings imagines from the minds of such of our readers VOL. III.
SECOND LETTER FROM AN OLD IN
as have been in the habit of consider- by the Orcadians and Americans. Its ing the existence of the Great Sea Ser- appearance in the finest months of pent as little deserving of credit, we summer, during the calmest and most do not deem it necessary to encroach settled weather ; its resemblance, further upon their patience. Our while on the surface of the water, to a chief object in the preceding examina- long chain of casks or floats; the ration has been to shew, not only that pidity of its motions ; and its general certain animals, which, by a great ma- aspect and character; are described in jority of voices, have been long re- such a manner by the one, as immegarded as inseparable from the legends diately to recal to recollection the words of fable and romance, do actually ex- of the other. The existence of both ist, but also, that the proof of their these animals, we think, may be reexistence is not to be attributed solely, lied upon, although the exact nature as some have supposed, to the discov- of the former is mysterious, and that eries of recent writers; on the con- of the latter sufficiently obscure. No trary, that all the most remarkable and doubt much has been accomplished characteristic features in their forms by the assiduity of modern naturalists, and habits, may be found recorded in yet it is evident that much remains the works of the Scandinavian authors still to be done. “ There are more who flourished about and preceding things in heaven and earth than are the middle of the last century. In re- dream't of in our philosophy.”
W. gard to the Kraken, which formed the subject of our first communication, it may be observed, that it is still exceedingly difficult to form a very decisive opinion of its real nature, or to separate its genuine history from the dense mass of fiction and exaggeration MR EDITOR, with which it is at present obscured. If any of your readers (who have are At the same time, we certainly con- rived at the years of discretion) were sider the different accounts to which inclined to hesitate about adopting the we have referred, however vague and conclusions of my former letter, I ima uncertain they may be deemed, quite agine the answer to that letter, which sufficient to establish the existence of has since appeared in your Magazine, an enormous marine animal, the at- must have greatly contributed to retributes of which are of a nature suf- move their scruples. The young lady, ficiently singular to account for the who has done me the honour to be so addition of those fabulous and almost witty at my expense, was not aware, supernatural powers with which it has when she composed her smart parabeen gifted by the superstitious appre- graphs, that she was, in truth, advohensions of the vulgar. An attentive cating, with all her might, the cause consideration of such of its characters she supposed herself to be confoundas may be relied upon, seems to war- ing. How she has happened to disrant the conclusion, that the great cover me under the signature of northern animal, called the Kraken, Old Indian," I cannot exactly discover; is more nearly allied to the Colossal but it may be as well for me, before I Cuttle Fish of the Indian and African go any farther, to confess very frankly seas, than to any other creature of to you and to your readers, that the which we have ever heard ; and that hints she has given you respecting my these two species should be regarded person are, upon the whole, pretty as analagous, differing only in as far
correct. I am old and gouty, Mr Edias animals of the same genus are tor, but that is nothing to the argufound to differ from each other, the ments of Miss Alpina. It is sufficient nature of whose physical and geogra- for all the purposes of the present con, phical position is so entirely dissimi- troversy, that I can hear and see. I lar.
also have made my discoveries, but of As to the Sea Serpent, it is unne- these in the sequel. cessary to point out an agreement so There is only one thing in the letter obvious, as that which might be per- of Miss Alpina, which can be by any ceived to exist between the accounts sophistry twisted into an argument in of the Norwegian writers and those given of the same or a similar animal
. See No XI.
favour of the rout-and-ball-system. will, it was the papistry of Airtation. It is this, that so far from the oppor. He had his relics like a good Catholic, tunities of gallantry and flirtation be his fan, his glove, or his thimble ; a ing lessened by the discontinuance of miniature, if he could procure one, was small parties, they are, in fact, multi- a treasure above all price. He was a plied beyond all calculation, by means saint-worshipper, and the supremacy of the necessary bustle, confusion, ne- of some favourite Catharine or Bridget glect, and hubbub of great ones. She did not prevent him from reserving an says well, that in the thick of a rout, abundant portion of his veneration for or in the lobby of a house turned up. Cecilia, Martha, Agnes, and all the side down by a ball; or, in the chaos fair innocents of his calendar. Alpina of a supper for forty or fifty people will say that the reformation is a blesspacked into a bed-closet, there occur ing ; I doubt whether the adoption of abundant occasions for sapping, in de- a less stately ceremonial has been as tail, all the outworks of courtship, or useful in the temple of Love, as in even for popping the match destined that of Religion. to blow up the citadel itself. Alpi- I am by no means desirous of being na is herself a melancholy example, severe on matters at home, but I that, however favourable might be the must confess my conviction, that a opportunity, it is not unfrequently ne. British ball-room is a thing, the absurglected. It seems that there is nothing dities of which are in a great measure to prevent the enemy from drawing his peculiar and unrivalled. I remember line as close as he pleases; there is when things wore a very different asevery reason to suspect that he might pect; but the present mode of dancing easily gain a party within the fortress, is, I think, indeed an abomination. who would be happy, by all means in Without the airiness of French, the their power, to facilitate his entrance; sentiment of German, or the splendour -surely he is not much set upon the of Spanish execution, it is a vain and conquest, otherwise he would make fruitless attempt to ingraft the graces some use of “ the favourable hour.” . of continental dancing upon the abori
The truth is, that there is no want ginal coarseness of the reel. When I of flirtation among our young gentle- was a young man, I used to see the men and ladies ; my complaint is, that country lads and lasses dance pretty there is too much flirtation of one kind, much in the same manner at their the false, the superficial, the coxcombi- kirns, and I thought it suited them cal, the non-chalant; and very, very and their habits extremely well. As little of another kind, which I prefer for the quadrille, that is a late importthe true, the hearty, the sentimental, ation, the use of which has not yet, the Philandering, old-fashioned flirta- and I believe never will, become famition. It moves my spleen, Mr Editor, liar to us. I never see four grave, when I go into a ball-room, or a rout- gloomy, Edinburgh beaux, figuring room, to see with what a confident, in it with four stiff, prim, saddled self-satisfied, free-and-easy manner, misses, without being reminded, in the the Alpinas of the present day suffer most lively manner, of some of the themselves to be addressed by their cuts in Holbein's dance of death. beaux. When a young gentleman of The waltz is not so bad a thing abrcad my time approached a young lady, you as it is here. Foreigners continue to could read love in some one or other smile it off as a matter of a course, but of its shapes or shadings, in all the our waltzing couples seem always to workings of his countenance. His be impressed with a consciousness of general deportment was one of a fare guilt. With them it has quite the apoff, respectful, almost adoring, sub- pearance of a serious and deliberate ofmission; a smile shone upon him like a fence; but perhaps Miss Alpina may beam from above,-he received a whis- be of opinion that all this adds to the per with the veneration due to an or- gout. acle of Heaven.
The young ladies may depend upon When the humility of his devotion it, that this vile system of dancing is procured for him a moment of com- a poor substitute for the elegant and munion with his deity, his counte- stately minuets which I remember to nance glowed with the fervency of a have seen performed by their grandmore than earthly rapture. His wor- mothers, in an assembly room far ship was formal, no doubt ; if you smaller, but far more splendid, grace