John R Tudor.

The Orkneys and Shetland; their past and present state online

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stantly during summer and autumn do you hear them
^ Hibberl's Shetland Lies, p. 408.



SHETLAND. 421

littering their peculiar note, when you are fishing in any of
the out-of-the-way lochs. In the Orkneys too, Baikie and
Heddle say, that they are far more numerous, than, either the
great northern diver, or the black-throated diver. In addition
to the ordinary members of the Laridce^ the Ivory, Iceland, and
Glaucous gulls are regular winter visitors. The Great Skua or
Bonxie, as it is generally termed, and the Richardson's Skua, on
the other hand, only come for the breeding season. Full de-
scriptions of these birds will be iound. post (pp. 520-22). Saxby
states that the Fulmar Petrel, or AfaUimoke, though constantly
seen at the haaf fishing, never breeds in Shetland. The writer,
however, was told when in Foula that a ie\y viallimokes bred
under the Kaim, but will not vouch for his authority. The
Manx Shearwater, or Lyrie, though common, is not looked upon
as the tit-bit it is in the Orkneys — a fact Low was rather struck
with. The Stormy Petrel, or Mother Carey's chickens, are said
to be very numerous. According to Saxby, with the single
exception of one specimen of the Black Tern, Sterna Fissipes,
only the Arctic Tern has been seen in Shetland. The writer,
however, believes he killed at the Loch of Sung near Walls,
on the 5th of September, 1879, a specimen of the Little Tern,
Sterna Minuta, as the bird tallied completely with the descrip-
tion in Macgillivray, which he had with him. The Gannet or
Soland Goose, is constantly seen at sea, but it is doubtful whether
it ever breeds in the group ; if it does so, it is supposed to be at
the Out and North Stacks. Both of the Cormorants, the
Common Guillemot, or Lotigie, the Black Guillemot, or Tystie,
the Ringed Guillemot, the Little Auk, or Rotchie, the Pufifin,
or Tammy Norie^ and the Razor-bill, or IVillock, are very abun-
dant or common. One curious fact about the Shetland fauna
is noticed by Brand, that neither frogs nor toads, which are
abundant in the Orkneys, are to be found in Shetland.



CHAPTER XXXII.

NOTES ON 'I'HE FLORA OF SHETLAND.

r,V rETF.R WHITE, L.R.C.S.E.

The Botany of Shetland cannot be undertaken by the
botanist without niucli travelling, as the rarer plants are very
much scattered over the islands which compose the group.
Beginning at Unst, on the Utsta, or Out Stack, the Cochkaria
Officinalis gxows in great luxuriance. It is interesting as being
the plant which grows in the most northern part of Her
Majesty's dominions. On the serpentine hills on the north
side of Balta Sound is found the Areiiaria Norvegica ; the
only other British station for this plant being North Ronaldsay
in the Orkneys. On the same serpentine hills grow Draha
Incana, Molinia Depauperata, Triodia Decinnbens, Arabis
Fetrcea, Thalictriim Alpiimm, Carex Pulicaria. On the south
side of Balta Sound, w^est of Ordale House, is found in abun-
dance the OpJiioglossum Viilgatum ; and in the same neighbour-
hood the Polypodijnn Dryopteris ; the only station in Shetland
where it is to be found.

In a burn near Skaw is found the IIy7)ie7iophylhim Wilsoni.

On the pebbly sand of Burra Fiord the '■'■Lathyrus Marifii?ius"
a rare British plant, was at one time said to grow. It may
still, but we failed to discover it. The Trientalis Eiiropo'.a is
found at Hermaness.



NOTES ON THE FLORA OF SHETLAND. 423

In Yell and Fetlar the flora is much the same as found
commonly over Shetland.

On Rooeness Hill, on the Mainland, are to be found the
following : — On the north-western slopes of the hill the Loi'se-
leuria Frociwibens, ArctostapJiylos Alpina, Arctostaphjlos Uva-
Urst, Alchemilla Alpina, Gnaphalhim Alpiiium, Sedinii
Rhodiola, &c. Above Sand Voe is found the beautiful bright
purple Saxifraga Oppositifolia growing abundantly on the green
slopes ; the only other Shetland station for this plant being
F'itful Head, Dunrossness.

In a small loch at the base of Rooeness Hill, on the north
side, is found the Nymphcca Alba}

We will not detail any other habitats of the Shetland flora —
the brevit}' of this article will not admit of it.

We cannot, however, pass on to the enumeration of the
plants generally to be found, without stating that there is much
to be done in the elucidation of the Botany of Shetland.
There are many plants which are found that are doubtless
introduced by seeds from the seedsman in the south. These
appear in the gardens and cornfields now and again, but the
botanist at once discerns that they are not indigenous to
the soil.

The most attractive of all the Shetland wild plants is the
beautiful blue Scilla Verna. It is found everywhere; in some
places casting a most brilliant blue mantle over the green
sward in the early spring.

There is nothing that can be dignified with the title of a
tree, indigenous to Shetland. Meagre and stunted specimens,
of Fyrus Aaiparia, Populus Nigra, occur, these, probably,
representing the only native trees. The country is virtually

^ Low, in his Tour, p. 119, mentions li.iving, in J-onfja Water, near
Walls, found *' Nytiiphera Alba, or Great Water Lily, Fl. Succ. 470, in
great j^lenty, the only time I have seen it in Orkney or Shetland, nor do
I think it is to be found anywhere else through them. The flowers very
large, equalling a small Tulip ; the petals most nu-nerous, approaching to
a full flower ; the only instance that 1 know of this in our Island
Catalogue." — J. R. T.



434 THE ORA'A-EVS AND SHETLAND.

treeless. The only notable exception of trees growing to any
size are those around Busta House, which were planted more
than a hundred years ago. The Horse Chestnut, Mountain
Ash, Sycamore, and common Ash, grow there in wonderful
kixuriance. That Shetland was well covered with wood at
one time there cannot be a doubt. The evidence of this is
seen ever3'where ; in the roots and trunks of trees which are
constantly being exposed in the digging of peats, &c.

The ferns to be found in Shetland are namely : — ■

Hymenophylliim Wilioni. rare, Skaw, Unst.

Fteiis Acpdlino, common.

BIcchnum Borcale, abundant.

Asplenium Ruta-mui-aria, rare.

Asplenium Marinnm, frequent.

Asplenium Adiantuni Nigrum, cliffs near Busta and Nortli-
maven generally.

Asplenium Felix Fxmina, Island of Linga, at the mouth of
Olna Firth.

Scolopendrium Vuigare, Sanday-banks, Scalloway, rare, if
not now extinct.

Nephroditwi Filix Mas, abundant.

Nephrodium Thelypteris, frequent.

Nephrodinm Oreopteris, North Rooe.

Polypodium Vuigare, common.

Polypodiuvi Phegopteris, rare, Brae, Delting.

Polypodium Dryopieris, rare, Ordale, Balta Sound.

Foirychium Liinaiia, common.

Gphioglossum Vulgatum, rare, Ordale, Balta Sound.

Osfjiunda Fegalis, probably now extinct, through the
vandahsm of fern hunters, but once found at Sandwick, Unst.

The following plants are common or pretty frequent in
Shetland : —

Armeria Maritima, Anchusa Arvensis, Authriscus Sylvestris,
A. Vulgaris, Achilk-ea Plarmica, A. Millefolium, Arenaria Pep-
loides, A. Subulata, Anthyllis Vulneraria, Apargia Autumnalis,
Atriplex Patula, A. Deltoidea, A. Rosea, Arctostaphylos Uva-



NOTES ON THE FLORA OF SHETLAND. 425

Ursi, Angelica Sylvestris, Artemesia Vulgaris, Bellis Perennis,
Carex Ovalis, C. Pulicaris, C. Dioica, C. QEderii, C. Flava,
C. Arenaria, C. Binervis, C. Speirostachya, C. Precox, C.
Goodenovii, C. Recurva, C. AmpuUacea, Cackile Maritima,
Capsella Bursa-Pastoris, Cochlearia Officinalis, C. Danica, C.
Greenlandica, Cardamine Pratensis, Calluna Vulgaris, Carduus
Palustris, C. Lanceolatus, C. Arvensis, Chrysanthemum Leu-
canthemum, C. Segetum, C. Inodorum, Caltha Palustris, Cal-
litriche Verna, C. Autumnali, C. Platycarpa, Cherleria Sedoides,
Cerasteum Glomeratum, C. Triviale, Chenopodium Album,
Drosera Longifolia, D. Rotundifolia, Daucus Carota, Eleocharis
Palustris, E. Cffispitosa, Eriophorum Vaginatum, E. Poly-
stachion, E. Angustifolium, Epilobium Palustre, Erica Cine-
rea, E. Tetralix, Euphrasia Officinalis, Euphorbia Helioscopia,
Equisetum Arvense, E. Palustre, E. Limosum, E. Sylvaticum,
Fumaria Officinalis, Gnaphalium Dioicum, Gentiana Cam-
pestris, Glaux Maritima, Gymnadynia Conopsia, G. Albida,
Galeopsis Tetrahit, Galium Verum, G. Palustre, G. Saxatile,
G. Boreale, G. Witheringii, G. Uliginosum, Geranium Molle,
Habenaria Viridis, Hedera Helix, Hydrocotile Vulgaris, Hera-
cleum Spondylium, Hypericum Pulchrum^ Hippuris Vulgaris,
Juncus Effiasus, J. Compressus, J. Lamprocarpus, J. Bufonius,
J. Squarrosus, J. Uliginosus, J. Acutiflorus, Jasione Montana,
Iris Pseudo-acorus, Juniperus Communis, J. Nana, Littorella
Lacustris, Lithosi)em"ium Maritimum, Linum Catharticum,
Lamium Purpureum, L. Incisum, L. Intermedium, L. Album,
Lonicera Periclymenum, Leontodon Taraxacum, Lycopodium
Selago, L. Selaginoides, L. Alpinum, Lychnis Floscuculi, L.
Dioica, Lathyrus Pratensis, Luzula Sylvatica, L. Pilosa, Mer-
tensia Maritima, Menyanthes Trifoliata, Myosotis Palustris,
M. Versicolor, M. Arvensis, M. Collina, Narthecium Ossi-
fragum. Orchis Latifolia, O. Mascula, O. Maculata, Primula
Vulgaris, Parnassia Palustris, Polygonum Hydropiper, P.
Aviculare, P. Persicaria, P. Amphibium, P. Viviparum, Pin-
guicula Vulgaris, Pedicularis Sylvatica, P. Palustris, Plantago
Major, P. Lanceolata, P. Maritima, P. Coronopus, Potamogeton



426 THE ORKNEYS AND SHETLAND.

Natans, Polygala Vulgaris, Potentilla Anserina, P. Comarum,
P. Tormentilla, Papaver Dubium, Rosa Canina, R. Tomentosa,
Ranunculus Acris, R. Repens, R. Ficaria. R. Flammula, R.
Reptans, Rumex Crispus, R. Aquaticus, R. Acetosa, R. Aceto-
sella, Rhinanthus Crista Galli, Raphanus Raphanistrum, Scilla
Verna, Scabiosa Succisa, Senecio Jacoboea, S. Vulgaris, S.
Aquaticus, Stachys Sylvatica, S. Palustris, Statice Limonium,
Sinapis Arvensis, Salix Repens, S. Argentea, S. Aurita, Spirsea
Ulmaria, Schoberia Maritima, Salicornia Herbacea, Sagnia
Procumbens, S. Maritima, Solidago Virgaurea, Stellarea Media,
S. Uliginosa, S. Graminea, Selene Acaulis, S. Maritima, Spergula
Arvensis, S. Marina, Sedum Rhodiola, S. Anglicum, Sonchus
Oleraceus, S. Arvensis, Schoenus Nigricans, Triglochin Mariti-
mum, T. Palustre, Trifolium Repens, T. Pratense, T. Medium,
Tanacetum Vulgare, Thalictrum Alpinum, Urtica Urens, U.
Dioica, Vicia O. Cracca, V. Sativa, Viola Canina, V. Tricolor,
V. Arvensis, A^accinium Myrtillus, Veronica Ser]^)yllifolia, V.
Beccabunga, V. Anagallis, V. Chamaedrys, V. Hederifolia,
V. Arvensis, V. Officinalis, Zostera Marina.

The rarer plants are :- —

Anagallis Tenella, %\\oxt?, of Loch of Cliff, Unst ; Sound,
Lerwick.

Arahis Petrcea, hills north side of Balta Sound.

Ardostaphylos Alpina, abundant near top of Rooeness Hill.

Arenaria Norvegica, serpentine hill on tlie north side of
Balta Sound.

Arctiuvi Lappa, Dunrossness.

Artemisia Absitithium., Muckle Rooe, &c.

Beta Maritima, Bressay.

Carex Inctirva, Dunrossness.

Campanula Rotimdifolia, Laxfirth, Tingwall.

Draba Jncana, Fetlar, North Rooe.

Erythrcea Littorales, SuUam Voe.

Eryngiian Maritimum, Tangwick, Northmaven ; Bressay.

Epilohium Montanum, Laxfirth, Tingwall ; Belmont, Unst.

Epilohium Angustifolium, Rooeness Hill ; Burra Fiord, Unst.



JVOTES ON THE FLORA OF SHETLAND. 427

Fragaria Vesca, Busta; Sanday-banks, Scalloway.

Glaticiitm Liiieum, SuUam Voe.

Gentiana Ainarilla, Dunrossness.

Galium Borcale, North Rooe,

Gnaphaihem Supinum, Rooeness Hill.

Gnaphalhwi Uliginosum, Upper Sound, Lerwick.

Hieraceum Denticulatum, Burra Fiord, Unst.

Hieraceum Mu7vni»i, Northmaven.

Hypericum Perforatum, Ollaberry.

Junciis Triglumis, Rooeness Hill.

Loiseleuria Procumbeiis, slopes near the summit of Rooeness
Hill.

Mollinia Depaiipcrata, Rooeness Hill.

Populus Nigra, Walls ; Busta.

Potamogeton Lucens, P. Crispus, Tingwall Loch; Loch of Cliff.

Potainogeton Heteivphyllus, Burra Fiord, Unst.

Potamogeton Pecti/iaius, Dales Voe, Delting.

Pyrola Media, Walls.

Petasites Vulgaris, near Ollaberry.

Lathyrus Maritimus,^ViXXd>. Fiord, Unst, probably now extinct.

Raphamis Maritimus^ Bressay.

Rtipia Maritima, Mossbank.

Rubus Saxatilis, Voe Burn, Olna Firth ; Ollaberry, Nortli-
maven.

Sparganium Natans, Loch near Symbister House, Whalsay :
near Heylor, Rooeness Voe.

Saxifraga Oppositifolia, Fitful Head, Dunrossness ; Sand
Voe, Northmaven, on the northern slopes of the Voe.

Scirpus Lacustris, Sandwater Loch ; Loch of I^und, Unst.

Sibbaldia Procu7nbens, Rooeness Hill.

Triodia Dccumbens.

Trolleus Europceus, Quendale, Dunrossness,

Irientalis Europcea, Herman Ness, Unst.

Tussilago Farfara, Ollaberry ; Hillswick ; Tresta, Sandsting.

Utricularia Vulgaris, Rooeness Voe ; Walls, &c.
, Vacciiiium Uliginosum, North of Unst.



42S THE ORKNEYS AND SHETLAND.

As already stated, there are many plants found in Shetland
besides those we have tabulated, but as they are evidently
introduced they cannot claim to be indigenous. Thus there are
the beautiful scarlet Anagallis Arvensis, Veronica Buxbaumii,
Scilla Nutans, Aquilegia Vulgaris, Doronicum Pardalianches,
Lapsana Communis, Agrostemma Githago, Onopordon Acan-
thium, Centaurea Cyanus, Geranium Phaeum, Ulex Europrea,
and many others.

There are no rare grasses, and what are found are ver\'
much similar to what are to be got in other parts of the British
Islands.




(rto^ *" Esiab^



CHAPTER XXXIII.

SHETLAND. — FAIR ISLE.

" A lonely isle

"Twixt HetlanJ and the Orkneys there looms forth,

Uprearing high to Heaven its bold, proud heat),

The Fair Isle — to Shetland appertaining,

And of like origin, and by like race

Inhabited at first. A mere insect

It seemeth, from a thick swarm disjoin'd.

And here alone into the wave cast dow n.

Scarce to one hundred count the souls who dwell

Upon the south side of this desert spot,

Like earth's last habitants, or like to men

Forgotten by the world, strange to the age.

Unmoved by other change than the raindrops

Of birth and death which variation make,

And grave themselves into their life's hard soil."

" Fair Isle," from the German
by Jensen.

It all depends on the state of tide and clearness of the
atmosphere, whether the steamer proceeds from Kirkwall down
the String, and through Auskerry Sound, or runs down through
Spurness Sound to the Start, whence you take your leave of the
Orkneys. Four hours or so, in fine weather, from the time you
leave Kirkwall will bring you abreast the southern end of Fair
Isle. Any one, who contemplates spending a few days on this
Patmos in the wild North Sea, had better write a month or so
beforehand to Mr. Laurence, who, as one of Her Majesty's



430 THE ORKNEYS AND SHETLAND.

Justices, looks after law and order, as Catechist of the Church
of Scotland looks after the spiritual wants of such of the
natives as cling to the Old Kirk, as registrar sees to the num-
bering of the people, as schoolmaster attends to the " skelping "
the bairns, and as Lloyd's agent and the representative of the
Board of Trade sees to the lifeboat, cliff ladders, and rocket
apparatus, and the " welcomin' o' strangers " whom wind, tide,
or fog may throw on the shores of his dominions. He may be
able to find accommodation. When the writer was there, in
i8So, a new schoolhouse was being erected in accordance with
the requirements of My Lords of the Education Department,
and, perhaps, the old schoolhouse may be available in future as
a hospice. Mr. Laurence would arrange to send a boat out to
meet the steamer, in which you could disembark in comfort.
However, by asking the captain to hoist a flag at the foremast
head, as he approaches the island, you are almost certain of a
boat, as " boat hires " are not to be picked up every day by the
Fair Islanders, by whom they are considered quite as much
" God sends," as they were all over Shetland in Hibbert's day.
It might be as well to take some meat with you from Kirk-
wall, and, of course, what liquids you are in need of in the
shape of wine, beer, or spirits.

Here a word of caution. No one should land on any of these
islands, where there is a chance of being storm-stayed for several
days, or it might be, though rarely in ordinary summers, weeks,
without a pocket enema, as alteration in diet, and what not, are
apt to bring on violent constipation, which purgatives seem at
times to increase instead of dispersing. One or two lives
might have been saved here, and in Foula, had this simple
means of relief been within reach.

Fair Isle, the Fridarey of the Saga, should, properly speaking,
be known as either Faroe, or Faerey, or, if its Scandinavian
name must be Anglicised, as Sheep Isle.

To the present day the Orcadian and Shetland smacksmen,
when going to the cod fishery, say they are going to the North
Faroes, thus suggesting, that this and the Orcadian Faras must



SHETLAND. 431

once have been known as the South Faroes. Situated some
twenty-six miles from North Ronaldsay, and twenty-four from
Sumburgh Head in the full swirl of the Gulf Stream, as it
forces its way between the Orkneys and Shetland, Fair Isle
is a conspicuous example of matter in the wrong place.
Prominent enough in fair weather, it becomes during fogs, in
snowstorms, or during the dark winter nights, owing to the
strong sets of tide which sweep down on all sides of it, one of
the most dangerous spots in the North Sea, and its wreck
register if it could be compiled, even for this century only,
would be something appalling.

It has been proposed — though whether it will ever be carried
out is doubtful — -to place a couple of lighthouses on the island,
one at each end, and a steam syren or fog-horn in the centre.
About three miles and a quarter in length from Teind Point in
the S.S.W. to the Skroo in the N.N.E., the island in its broadest
part from the Holm of Borrowster on the west to Bu Ness on
the east, is about a mile and a half across. Hedged round by
precipitous cliffs on almost all sides, it is everywhere fissured
with geos, few of which, however, are available for landing,
though, thanks to the South and North Harbours, it has anchor-
ages, that, though not completely land-locked, are better than
none. Till somewhere about the middle of the last century
the island belonged to the Sinclairs of Quendale, by one of
whom, according to tradition, it was lost at cards to the Stewart
of Brugh of the day. On the death of the last male Stewart of
that ilk, Fair Isle, with his other property, was sold, and the
proceeds devoted — in accordance with a will, which has already
given rise to a good deal of litigation, and, if all accounts are
true, might have furnished the groundwork for a cmise cHehre
as interesting in its way as any that have yet been tried — partly
to hospital purposes and partly ad pios usiis or superstitious
nonsense, whichever way you look at it. On the sale the
island was purchased by Mr. Bruce the Yr. of Sumburgh, in
whose possession it still remains.

The great historical incident connected with Fair Isle, and



432 THE ORKNEYS AND SHETLAND.

which furnished the subject for Jensen's Poem, was the wreck
in Sivars Geo, not far from the landing-place, of one of the ships
of the Spanish Armada. For a long time it was believed, that the
vessel in question was the flagship of the Spanish Commander-
in-Chief, the Duke de Medina Sidonia, but the publication in
1829 by the Bannatyne Club of the diary (1556 — 1601) of the
Rev. James Melvill, Minister of Anstruther, has given us the
name of the admiral and so enabled us to find the name of
his vessel.

l^Ielvill's description ^ of the landing of the survivors at
Anstruther is very quaint. He begins, " 15S8. That wintar the
king was occupied in commenting of the Apocalypse, and in
setting out of sermontes thervpon against the Papists and
Spainyarts. And yit by a piece of grait owersight the Papists
practeised neuer maier bisselie in the land and maid graitter
preparations for receaving of the Spainyards nor that yeir. For
a lang tyme the newes of a Spanish Nauie and armie had bein
blasit abrode ; and about the Lambes tyde of the 1588, this
Yland had fund a feirfuU eft'ect therof to the vtter subuersion
bathe of Kirk and policie gifif God haid nocht wonderfullie
watched ower the sam, and mightalie fauchten and defeat that
armie be his Souldiours the Elements, quhich he maid all four
maist fiercely to afflict tham till almost vtter consumption.
Terrible was the fair, persing war the pretchings, ernest,
zealous, and fervent war the prayers, sounding was the siches
and sobbes, abounding was the teares at that Fast and Generall
Assemblie keepit at Edinburche when the newes was crediblie
tauld " &c.

The worthy minister does not seem to have heard, or, per-
haps, like a patriotic Scot, affected ignorance, of that running
fight from the Lizard to Calais, and thence to Firth of Forth,
when Papist and Puritan, forgetting for a time the cardinal

duty of

" Fighting like devils for conciliation,

And hating each other for the love of God,"

1 Melvill's Diary, p. 1 74.



SHETLAND. 433

went forth together to do or die for their native land ; when
Howard of Effingham, Drake, Cumberland, Sheffield, Hawkins,
Frobisher, Fenner, and scores of other dauntless Englishmen
rushed gaily out of every port and creek on the south coast to
teach the Grandees of Spain such a coranto as they had never
dreamed of in the sunny south ; when the Arke Ratvleghc^ the
Raynbowe., the Golden Lyon, the Victory, the Antelope, the Bull,
and the Tyger, sailed out to salute, in most hearty fashion, the
S. Martin, the S. Jiian, the S. Alarcos, the S. Lnys, the
S. Mateo, the S. /ago, the S. Christoual, and all the other saints
in the Spanish calendar; and when the "God and St. George
for merrie England," of the crews of the nimble English
vessels, was, as the fight drifted slowly up Channel, answered
defiantly back, from the top-gallant forecastles and castellated
poops of the lumbering Spanish galleons, by the " St. Jago y
Corapostella " of the haughty Dons, who were finding, that the
sheep, they had come to shear, had cruelly sharp horns, and
that they knew how to use them.

Luckily, at that supreme crisis in the national history, the
statesmen of England were men of action, not drifting dreamers
hankering after a hopeless Utopia, and England's stingy
monarch, with all her faults, and they were many, was not given
to '' commenting of the Apocalypse," and " setting out of
sermontes," and, though she had '' but the body of a weak and
feeble woman," had " the heart of a King, and of a King of
England too."

Amongst the many valuable documents, relating to the
Armada, preserved in the British Museum, one of the most
valuable is a copy of the official Spanish list of the vessels
comprising that huge flotilla, which King Philip so unluckily
christened "La Felicissima Armada."

This list, which contains full particulars of every vessel,
its crew, armaments, &c., was probably obtained for Lord
Burghley by his agent or spy in Spain, who wrote under the
initials "B. C." '

It is largely annotated, not only in Spanish and French, by
^ See Ellis's Original Letters, vol. iii. p. 136.

F F



434 THE ORKNEYS AND SHETLAND.

" B. C." or some one he employed, but also in Lord Burghley's
own handwriting.

From this official list we find, that the eighth division of the
Armada consisted of twenty-three transports, hulks, and store
ships, and was termed the " Armada de Vrcas." This squadron
was commanded by Juan Gomez de Medina, whose flag was
flown on board £/ Gran Grifon, a chartered vessel from
Rostock, of 650 tons. In addition to her crew of forty-three
'' gente de mar," or mariners, she carried 243 "gente de
guerra," or soldiers, who were commanded by Capitana Patricio
Antolinez, and Esteuan de Legoretto. Against Juan Gomez
de Medina's name is a note in Lord Burghley's writing, ••' This
man's ship was drowned 17 Sept. in ye He of Furemare,
Scotland j " and again, in the general summary of the Armada
is a note against de Medina's name, " This man cam in by
Scotland and passed into Spain." Now Melvill, when
describing their arrival ai Anstruther, mentions not only " Jan
Gomes de Medina, Generall of twentie houlkes," whom he
describes as " a verie reuerend man, of big- stature and graue
and stout countenance, gray beared and verie humble lyk,"
" Capitan Patricio," and " Capitan de Legoretto," but also
" Capitan de Luffera, Capitan Mauritio, and Seingour Serrano,"
and states that " threttin score" landed, "for the maist part
young, berdless, sillie, trauchled and houngered." Now we
have seen, that the total complement of El Gran Grifon was,



Online LibraryJohn R TudorThe Orkneys and Shetland; their past and present state → online text (page 36 of 59)