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xxxix. 272. — In a vessel of the age. They spent near twelve years,

§ame name, of fifty tons, Martin strangers among the Dutch, first at

Pring had in 1603 coasted along Amsterdam, afterwards at Leyden.

the shores of New England. See After having arrived to the meridian

Prince, p. 102 ; Belknap, ii. 124. of life, the declining part was to

xi. J3.


CHAP, but lifted up their eyes to heaven, their dearest country,
^-v^^ and quieted their spirits.

1620. When they came to the place, they found the ship
and all things ready ; and such of their friends as could
not come with them, followed after them ; and sundry
also came from Amsterdam ' to see them shipped, and
to take their leave of them. That night was spent
with little sleep by the most, but with friendly enter-
tainment^ and Christian discourse, and other real ex-
July pressions of true Christian love. The next dav, the
wind being fair, they went on board, and their friends
with them ; when truly doleful was the sight of that
sad and mournful parting ; to see what sighs and sobs
and prayers did sound amongst them ; what tears did
gush from every eye, and pithy speeches pierced each
other's heart ; that sundry of the Dutch strangers, that
stood on the quay as spectators, could not refrain from
tears. Yet comfortable and sweet it was to see such
lively and true expressions of dear and unfeigned love.
But the tide, which stays for no man, calling them
away, that were thus loth to depart, their reverend pas-
tor, falling down on his knees, and they all with him,
with watery cheeks commended them, with most fer-
vent prayers, to the Lord and his blessing ; and then,
with mutual embraces and many tears, they took their
leaves of one another, which proved to be their last
leave to many of them.

Thus hoisting sail, with a prosperous wind,^ they

be spent in another world, among ' The distance from Amsterdam

savages, of whom every European to Delft-Haven is about 50 miles,
must have received a most unfavor- * Prince, p. 159, reads entertain-

able, if not formidable idea. 'Tan- ing.

turn religio potuit suadere.'" — 'Edward Winslow says, in his

Hutchinson, Hist. Mass. ii. 452. Brief Narrative, " We gave them a

The term Pilgrims belongs ex- volley of small shot and three

clusively to the Plymouth colonists, pieces of ordnance."


came in a short time to Southampton,^ where they chap.

. VII.

found the bigger ship come from London,^ Ijins: ready — ^
with all the rest of their company. After a joyful 16 20.
welcome and mutual congratulation, with other friendly
entertainments, they fell to parley about their proceed-
ings. [Seven hundred pounds sterling are laid out at
Southampton, and they carry about seventeen hundred
pounds venture with them ; and Mr. Weston comes
thither from London to see them despatched.] ^

A brief Letter written by Mr. John Robinson to Mr.
John Carver, at their parting aforesaid, in which the
tender love and godly care of a true pastor appeal's.

My Dear Brother,

I received enclosed your last letter and note of in-
formation, which I shall carefully keep and make use
of, as there shall be occasion. I have a true feeling of
your perplexity of mind and toil of body ; but I hope
that you, having always been able so plentifully to
administer comfort unto others in their trials, are so
well furnished for yourself, as that far greater difficul-
ties than you have yet undergone (though I conceive
them to be great enough) cannot oppress you, though
they press you, as the Apostle speaketh. " The J^l^^i^^
spirit of a man (sustained by the Spirit of God) will

' Southampton is a seaport in " After London, Prince, p. 160,

Hampsiiire, situated at the head of inserts from Gov. Bradford's MS.,

an estuary, running up from the " Mr. Jones master, with the rest

isle of Wight, called the Southamp- of the company, who had been

ton Water. It was the rendezvous waiting there with Mr. Cushmaa

of seven of Winthrop's fleet in seven days."

March, 1630, when he was prepar- ^ The sentence in brackets is

ifig to transport his colony to Massa- from Prince, p. 160, who quotes

chusetts Bay. See Savage's Win- Bradford's MS.
throp, i. 2, 366.



CHAP, sustain his infirmity." I doubt not so will yours ;


and the better much, when you shall enjoy the pre-
16 20. sence and help of so many godly and wise brethren,
for the bearing of part of your burden ; who also will
not admit into their hearts the least thought of suspi-
cion of any the least negligence, at least presumption,
to have been in you, whatsoever they think in others.^
Now what shall I say or write unto you and your good
wife, my loving sister r Even only this ; I desire, and
always shall, mercy and blessing unto you from the
Lord, as unto my own soul ; and assure yourself that
my heart is with yon, and that I will not foreslow^ my
bodily coming at the first opportunity. I have written
a large letter to the whole, and am sorry I shall not
rather speak than write to them ; and the more, con-
sidering the want of a preacher,^ which I shall also
make some spur to my hastening towards you. I do
ever commend my best affection unto you ; which if I
thought you made any doubt of, I would express in
more, and the same more ample and full words. And
the Lord, in whom you trust, and whom you serve
ever in this business and journey, guide you with his
hand, protect you with his wing, and show you and us
his salvation in the end, and bring us, in the mean

' This sentence indicates the it seem to betoken that the burden

great confidence reposed in Carver of government was expected to rest

by the Church. His being sent as on him, as it afterwards turned out.

their first and principal agent to See Hutchinson, ii. 456.

England, shows that he was a lead- * Foreslow, — delay,

ing and trusted man among the ^ It appears from page 85, that

Pilgrims, a fact which is confirmed " Mr. Crabe, a minister, had prom-

by the circumstance of his being iscd to go." They suffered much

selected by Robinson as the indi- afterward for want of a regular

vidual to whom to address this pastor,
parting letter. Some passages in


while, together in the place desired (if such be his chap
good will) for his Christ's sake. Amen.


Yours, ij6 2 0.

John Robinson.

July 27th, 1620.

This was the last letter that Mr. Carvpr lived to see
from him.'

At their parting, Mr. Robinson ^ writ a letter to the
whole company, which, although it hath already been
printed, yet I thought good here likewise to insert it.^

Loving Christian Friends,

I do heartily and in the Lord salute you, as being
those with whom I am present in my best affections,
and most earnest longings after you, though I be con-
strained for a while to be bodily absent from you. I
say constrained, God knowing how willingly, and
much rather than otherwise, I would have borne my
part with you in this first brunt, were I not by strong
necessity held back for the present. Make account of
me, in the mean while, as of a man divided in myself
with great pain, and as (natural bonds set aside) hav-
ing my better part with you. And though I doubt not
but in your godly wisdom you both foresee and resolve
upon that which concerneth your present state and
condition, both severally and jointly, yet have I thought
it but my duty to add some further spur of provocation

' Carver died in April, 1621. the Plymouth colonists in Dec.

' Oldmixon, i. 29, errs in saying 1621, and in 1669, in the New

that " Mr. Robinson did not //ye to England's Memorial. There are

go in person " with the first colo- some variations in the text of these

nists. He lived till 1625. several copies. It is not in Neal's

^ It was printed in 1622, in the New England, as stated by Prince,

Relation, or Journal, sent over by p. 160.


CHAP, to them, that run well already ; if not because you


need it, yet because I owe it in love and duty.

16 20. And first, as we are daily to renew our repentance
with our God, especially for our sins known, and gen-
erally for our unknown sins and trespasses, so doth the
Lord call us in a singular manner, upon occasions of such
difficulty and danger as lieth upon you, to a both more
narrow search and careful reformation of our ways in
his sight ; lest he calling to remembrance our sins for-
gotten by us or unrepented of, take advantage against
us, and in judgment leave us for the same to be swal-
lowed up in one danger or other. Whereas, on the
contrary, sin being taken away by earnest repentance,
and the pardon thereof from the Lord sealed up unto
a man's conscience by his Spirit, great shall be his
security and peace in all dangers, sweet his comforts
in all distresses, with happy deliverance from all evil,
whether in life or in death.

Now next after this heavenly peace with God and
our own consciences, we are carefully to provide for
peace with all men, what in us lieth, especially wdth
our associates ; and for that end, watchfulness must be
had, that we neither at all in ourselves do give, no, nor
easily take offence, being given by others. Wo be unto
the world for offences ; for although it be necessary
(considering the malice of Satan and man's corruption)

ivUhV. that offences come, yet wo unto that man, or woman
either, by w^hom the offence cometh, saith Christ.

.^S°r And if offences in the unseasonable use of things in

IX. lo. o

themselves indifferent be more to be feared than death
itself, as the Apostle teacheth, how much more in
things simply evil, in which neither honor of God nor
love of man is thought worthy to be regarded.


Neither yet is it sufficient that we keep ourselves, chap.


by the grace of God, from giving offence, except withal
we be armed against the taking of them, when they 162 0.
be given by others. For how unperfect and lame is
the work of grace in that person who wants charity to
cover a multitude of offences,^ as the Scripture speaks.
Neither are you to be exhorted to this grace only upon
the common grounds of Christianity, which are, that
persons ready to take offence, either want charity to
cover offences,^ or wisdom duly to weigh human frail-
ties, or, lastly, are gross though close hypocrites, as
Christ our Lord teacheth ; as indeed, in my own ex- vufi-s.
perience, few or none have been found which sooner
give offence, than such as easily take it ; neither have
they ever proved sound and profitable members in
societies, which have nourished this touchy humor.
But, besides these, there are divers motives provoking
you, above others, to great care and conscience this
way. As first, you are many of you strangers, as to
the persons, so to the infirmities one of another, and
so stand in need of more watchfulness this way ; lest,
when such things fall out in men and women as you
suspected not, you be inordinately affected with them ;
which doth require at your hands much wisdom and
charity, for the covering and preventing of incident
offences that way. And lastly, your intended course
of civil community will minister contiliual occasion of

* The passage between ' and ' — the recurrence of the word of^

is omitted in Morton's copy, in fences — the eye of the transcriber

the Church Records, but is restored glancing over the intervening

from his Memorial, p. 26. It is words. This is what the critics

also contained in the Relation or calls an o/xoiOTklevToy. See Le

Journal mentioned in the Note on Clerc's Ars Critica, ii. 49; Michae-'

page 91. The cause of tliis acci- lis, Introd. N. T. i. 271, (Marsh's

dental omission is evident enough ed.); Wetstein, N. T. ii. 863.


CHAP, offence, and will be as fuel for that fire, except you


diligently quench it with brotherly forbearance. And
162 0. if taking of offence causelessly or easily at men's
doings be so carefully to be avoided, how much more
heed is to be taken that we take not offence at God
himself; which yet we certainly do, so oft as we do
murmur at his providence in our crosses, or bear impa-
tiently such afflictions as wherewith he pleaseth to
visit us. Store we up therefore patience against the
evil day ; without which we take offence at the Lord
himself in his holy and just works.

A fourth thing there is carefully to be provided for,
to wit, that with your common employments you Join
common affections, truly bent upon the general good ;
avoiding, as a deadly plague of your both common
and special comfort, all retiredness of mind for proper
advantage, and all singularly affected any manner of
way. Let every man repress in himself, and the
whole body in each person, as so many rebels against
the common good, all private respects of men's selves,
not sorting with the general conveniency. And as
men are careful not to have a new house shaken with
any violence before it be well settled, and the parts
firmly knit, so be you, I beseech you, brethren, much
more careful that the house of God, which you are,
and are to be, be not shaken with unnecessary novel-
ties, or other oppositions, at the first settling thereof.^

' " Plutarch," says Jeremy Tay- and put out of shape by many

lor, " compares a new marriage to slight accidents; but when the

a vessel before the hoops are on." materials come once to be settled

" Therefore " Plutarch adds, " it and hardened by time, nor fire nor

behooves those people who are sword will hardly prejudice the

newly married to avoid the first solid substance." See Plutarch's

occasions of discord and dissension ; Morals, iii. 17, (ed. 1694) ; Taylor's

considering that vessels newly Works, v. 260, (Heber's ed.)
formed are subject to be bruised


Lastly, whereas you are to become a body politic, chap.
using amongst yourselves civil government, and are — v-i^
not furnished ^vith any persons of special eminency 1620.
above the rest to be chosen by you into office of gov-
ernment, let your wisdom and godliness appear not only
in choosing such ])ersons as do entirely love and will
diligently promote the common good, but also in yielding
unto them all due honor and obedience in their lawful
administrations, not beholding in them the ordinariness
of their persons, but God's ordinance for your good ;
nor being like the foolish multitude, who more honor the
gay coat than either the virtuous mind of the man, or
glorious ordinance of the Lord. But you know better
things, and that the image of the Lord's power and
authority, which the magistrate beareth, is honorable,
in how mean persons soever. And this duty you both
may the more willingly and ought the more conscion-
ably to perform, because you are, at least for the pre-
sent, to have only them for your ordinary governors
which yourselves shall make choice of for that work.

Sundry other things of importance I could put you
in mind of, and of those before mentioned in more
words. But I will not so far wrong your godly minds
as to think you heedless of these things ; there being
also divers among you so well able to admonish both
themselves and others of what concerneth them. These
few things, therefore, and the same in few words, I do
earnestly commend unto your care and conscience,
joining therewith my daily, incessant prayers unto the
Lord, that He who hath made the heavens and the earth,
the sea and all rivers of waters, and whose providence
IS over all his works, especially over all his dear child-
ren, for good, would so guide and guard you in your


CHAP, ways, as inwardly by his Spirit, so outwardly by the


hand of his power, as that both you, and we also, for
16 20. and with you, may have after matter of praising his
name all the days of your and our lives. Fare you
well in Him in whom you trust, and in whom I rest
An unfeigned well-wisher of your

Happy success in this hopeful voyage,

John Robinson.

This letter, though large, being so fruitful in itself
and suitable to their occasions, I thought meet to insert
in this place.*

' There is no date to this letter ; that letter Robinson says, " I have
but it was written about the same written a large letter to the whole."
time as the one to Carver, since in



All things being got ready, and every business chap.
despatched, the company w^as called together, and -^^-
this letter read amongst them ; which had good 16 2 0.
acceptation with all, and after fruit with many.
Then they ordered and distributed their company for
either ship, as they conceived for the best, and chose
a governor and two or three assistants for each ship,
to order the people by the way, and to see to the dis-
posing of their provisions, and such like affairs ; all
which was not only with the liking of the masters of
the ships, but according to their desires.

Which being done, they set sail ' from thence about
the fifth of August.~ [But, alas, the best enterprises 5.

' Smith, in bis New England's appear in the book entitled New

Trials, printed in 1622, and Pur- England's Menioria), page 31 ; and

chas, in his Pilgrims, iv. 1840, likewise of the voyage, and how

printed in 1625, say they sailed they passed the sea, and of their

" with about 120 persons." safe arrival at Cape Cod, see New

*" But what befell them further England's Memorial, page 33."

upon the coast of England, will Mortoii's Note.




CHAP, meet oftentimes with many discourasfements. For

-^'— they had not sailed far, before Mr. Reynolds, the mas-

16 20. terof the lesser ship, complained that he found his

ship so leaky, as he durst not put further to sea. On

Aug. which they were forced to put in at Dartmouth, Mr.

Jones, the master of the biggest ship, likewise putting

in there with him ; and the said lesser ship was

searched, and mended, and judged sufficient for the

Aug. voyage by the workmen that mended her. On which

both the said ships put to sea the second time. But

they had not sailed above a hundred leagues, ere the

said Reynolds again complained of his ship being so

leaky as that he feared he should founder in the sea if

he held on ; and then both ships bore up again, and

went in at Plymouth.^ But being there searched again,

no great matter appeared, but it was judged to be the

general weakness of the ship.

But the true reason of the retarding and delaying
of matters was not as yet discerned. The one of
them respecting the ship, (as afterwards was found,)
was that she was overmasted ; which when she came
to her trim in that respect, she did well, and made
divers profitable and successful voyages. But second-
ly, and more especially, by the deceit of the master
and his company, who were hired to stay a whole

As this account of the voyage it from what is contained in the

is substantially Bradford's, as ap- Church records,
pears from comparing it with the ' Grahame, i. 190, errs in saying

extracts from his MS. in Prince, that "the emigrants were at first

and as Morton refers to his Memo- driven back by a storm, which t?e-

rial merely to save the labor of stroyed one of their vessels;" and

copying, and would undoubtedly Gorges is wrong in stating that

have inserted it had he caused his they sailed in three ships, "whereof

uncle's History to be printed, I two proved unserviceable, and so

have deemed it proper to make it a were left behind." See Mass.

part of the narrative ; enclosing it. Hist. Coll. xxvi. 73,
however, in brackets to distinguish



year in tlie country ; but now fancying dislike, and chap.

fearing want of victuals, they plotted this stratagem to — v^-

free themselves, as afterwards was known, and bvi^^o.

some of them confessed. For they apprehended that

the greater ship being of force, and in whom most of
the provisions were bestowed, that she should retain
enough for herself, whatsoever became of them and
the passengers. But so strong was self-love and de-
ceit in this man, as he forgot all duty and former kind-
ness, and dealt thus falsely with them.

These things thus falling out, it was resolved by the
whole to dismiss the lesser ship and part of the com-
pany with her, and that the other part of the company
should proceed in the bigger ship.^ Which when they
had ordered matters in reference thereunto, they made
another sad parting, the one ship, viz. the lesser, going

* Neal, in his History of New was a matter of necessity, as the

England, i. 86, says, " Mr. Cush- Mayflower could not carry the

man and his family, with some whole. Bradford, as quoted by

others that were more /frtr/H/, went Prince, p. 161, says, "they agree

ashore, and did not proceed on the to dismiss her, (the Speedwell,) and

voyage." Baylies, too, in his Me- those who are willing, to return to

moir of Plymouth, i. 25, says, London, though this was very

"about twenty of the passengers grievous and discouraging; Mr.

were discouraged, and would not Cushman and family returning

reimbark." There is no ground with them." In the text, too,

for such an imputation on the which is virtually Bradford's, we

courage or perseverance of any of are told, " it was resolved by the

the emigrants ; and it is a matter itj/to/e to dismiss the lesser ship and

of regret that Mr. Bancroft should part of the company with her."

have lent to it the sanction of bis It was the captain and crev/ of the

authority. Hesays, i. 307, " the f?7?2- Speedwell that were unwilling to

z£? and the Aes/ia/»jo- Avere all freely go, not his passengers; and the

allowed to abandon the expedition, error seems to have arisen from

Having thus winnowed their num- considering the word company, in

bersof thecoHwr(//7/and thef/i5({//(T<- the passage " by the deceit of the

ed," Sec. Yet Robert Cushman, one master and his company," as mean-

of the most energetic and resolute of ing the emigrants instead of the

the Pilgrims, "who was as their sailors; in which latter sense it is

right hand," and who came over in constantly used at the present day

the next ship, the Fortune, in Nov. by merchants and seamen. — Smith

1621, was among those thus " win- and Purchas say they discharge 20

nowed." The dismissal of a part of their passengers.


CHAP, back for London, and the other, viz. the Mayflower,'
-^-v^- Mr. Jones bemg master, proceeding on in the intended

16 20. voyage.

These troubles being blo\vn over, and now all being

Sept. compact together in one ship, they put to sea again
with a prosperous wind.^ But after they had enjoyed
fair winds for a season, they met with many contrary
winds and fierce storms, with which their ship was
shrewdly shaken, and her upper works made very
leaky ; and one of the main beams of the mid-ships
was bowed and cracked,'' which put them to some fear
that she would not be able to perform the voyage ; on
which the principal of the seamen and passengers had
serious consultation what to do, whether to return or
hold on. But the ship proving strong under water, by
a screw ^ the said beam was brought into his place
again ; which being done, and well secured by the
carpenter, they resolved to hold their voyage
And so, after many boisterous storms, in which they

' The Mayflower is a ship of re- x., and Marshall, Life of Washing-
nown in the history of the coloni- ton, i. 91, and again Hist. Amer.
zation of New England. She was Col. p. 80, err in crowding the
one of the five vessels which in whole 120 into the ship. Oldmixon,
1629 conveyed Higginson's com- i. 30, who generally outdoes all
pany to Salem, and also one of the others in his blunders, magnifies
fleet which in 1630 brought over the number to 150.
Winthrop and his Colony to Mas- ^ Prince, p. 161, reads this word
sachusetts Bay. See Savage's icracked in Bradford's MS.
Winthrop, i. 2; Hutchinson's Col- ^ Prince, p. 161, quotes Brad-
lection of Papers, p. 33; Hazard, i. ford's MS. as saying, "a passenger
278. having brought a great iron screw

' With 100 persons, besides the from Holland."
crew of the vessel, according to '" " Nov. 6, dies at sea William
Smith and Purchas — which cor- Butten, a youth, and servant to

Online LibraryAlexander YoungChronicles of the Pilgrim fathers of the colony of Plymouth, from 1602-1625 → online text (page 9 of 44)