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• England we had many bond servants, until the time of her last civil wars; and I think that the laws concerning villainage are still in force, of which the latest are the sharpest. And now since slaves were made free, w bich were of great use and service, there are grown up a rabble of rogues, cut purses and other 'the like trades; slaves in nature, though not in law.'*
Warburton commends the conclusion of the history for the grandeur of its sentiments and expression. The whole would be too long for insertion, especially after so many extiacts; but it closes with this burst. O eloquent, just and mighty death! "whoin none could advise, thou hast persuaded; what none
bath dared, thou hast done; and whom all the world hath flat'tered, thou only hast cast out of the world and despised:
thou hast drawn together all the far-stretched greatness, all the 'pride, cruelty and ambition of man, and covered it all over with 'these two narrow words-llic jacet.'
It does not appear, that the publication of his history directly contributed to his release from prison. Though the King was himself an author, he might not have favoured the work. Royal authors are as subject to jealousy as others. It has been said that some of his courtiers led him to believe, that it was a secret history, and that Scotch faces were to be seen in it struck upon old Jewish, Babylonian or Assyrian shoulders.'.
His long imprisonment had softened the minds of his enenies; his great work had excited the feelings of the nation in his behalf; the Queen befriended him; Cecil was now dead; Somerset in prison; and the friends of Villiers, the new favourite, had received a bribe. These causes conspired to his discharge. He also proposed to renew his old project, and to go in quest of a gold mine in Guiana, a country which he had explored, in which King James had by a charter authorized settlements, and with which Raleigh had kept up an intercourse while in prison. Raleigh, when released from prison, raised ten thousand pounds sterling, and assisted by other adventurers, fitted out a fleet to proceed to Guiana, under the King's coinmission ; which was granted, notwithstanding the remonstrances of the Spanish Ambassador, who denounced the voyage as piratical and hostile.
By the commission, he was authorized to fit out a fleet, and appointed sole governor and coinmander of all persons under hiin, with power over them in cases capital and criminal as . well as civil;' and with authority in case of rebellion or mutiny by sea or land, to exercise martial law. Various difficul
* History of the World, b. v. c. ii. p. 585.
ties and delays impeded the voyage: he touched at several Spanish ports on the way, observing towards them the most guarded and peaceful deportment. Not long after the arrival of the fleet at Trinidad, Raleigh was seized with a fever, which brought him near to the last extremity; while slowly recovering, as the season was far advanced, he was obliged to plan the expedition which he could no longer lead. They had been received by the Indians with the greatest cordiality; who recognized Raleigh as an ancient visiter. To Keymis, who professed a knowledge of the site of the mine, was committed the command of the boats that were to ascend the river, with strict instructions to pursue steadily the discovery, and to act against any Spaniards who might oppose them, only on the defensive. Raleigh remained with the feet to meet any attack which the Spaniards might make on it by sea, and secure an asylum to the boats on their return. Raleigh's son, who had all the intrepid courage and romantic ardour of his father, went with the Keymis. They proceeded up the river in pursuit of the mine; but being attacked by the Spaniards, they not only defended themselves, but were led in the heat of the action to pursue the flying enemy, towards an inconsiderable town called St. Thomas, where young 'Raleigh being killed, they stormed the town and set it on fire. This death completely disconcerted Keymis; and though he afterwards ascended the river towards the mine, yet when he found himself impeded by the shallows in the river, the depth of the thickets, and by frequent attacks from the Spaniards, who had made some attempts at opening the mine, he abandoned.the enterprize. Keymis upon his return to the fleet, being reproached by Raleigh for the death of his son, the burning of the town, and the relinquishment of the search, in a fit of despair committed violence on himself.* Among the papers brought from St. Thomas', was
* This single fact is, we think. a sufficient answer to Hume's long vindication of James I. Raleigh was a soldier, and had been, as we have seen, not only a gallant but a rash one. He would never have reproached Keymis for the death of his son, if his life has been lost in gallantly assailing a post which he had been ordered or coun. selled to attack. If the capture of St. Thomé was, on the other hand, a rash and unauthorized measure of Keymis, the reproaches of Sir Walter Raleigh would be most keenly felt. Again, if the whole expedition had been, as Hume supposed, intended and prepared for plunder, on what ground could Keymis have been at all reproached for doing that which he had been appointed to perform, for capturing the only post the Spaniards then held on the Oronoque:-or why censured for not exploring the mountainous districts of Guiana, if the capture and plunder of cities had been his immediate object: or why, in short, should Raleigh have continued idle during the expedition of Keymis, and bave quit the coast immediately on his return, if, as Hume suggests, bis real object was to have acquired by piracy the means of purchasing a pardon at home. On the contrary, Raleigh appears to have been deeply chagrined. The mines, the mountains, at least, to which Keymis on two precediug voyages had, by his own accounts, approached within a few miles, were not
the very letter in which Raleigh had communicated in confidence to the King bis whole plan. This satished Raleigh, that the Spaniards had been too well prepared for him to authorize his making a second attempt at the present time; and dreading the fleet, which they might send to intercept his now disheartened crew, he determined to withdraw for the present, purposing at first, to refit in Virginia or Newfoundland. His crew having, however, become disorderly, and even risen into mutiny and imprisoned him for a time, he determined after quelling them, to return to England. As soon as it was known in Europe that a Spanish town had been burnt, and several Spaniards killed, the Spanish Ambassador broke into the royal presence, exclaiming with insolent familiarity, “Pirates, • Pirates, Pirates.'
Now, though the English title to Guiana, according to the laws of discovery, authorized the expedition to it; though the King well knew that Raleigh's voyage was to that country; though it had been allowed to proceed, notwithstanding the remonstrances of the crown of Spain, and after Raleigh had furnished a sketch of his project; though it was notorious that he had sailed with a considerable force; though be was authorized by his commission to defend himself; though it seems to have been understood among the European States, as a kind of law of nations for the Spanish settlements in the new world, that all differences were to be settled there by the parties on the spot, and that arms were to decide everything: yet, as the King in the mean time, was aiming at a Spanish match wbich bade fair to yield more honour and treasure than the mines of Guiana; and as the artful Gondomar had deluded the King with the fear, that Raleigh's outrage might defeat his favourite policy, it was determined, upon reasons of state, to sacrifice him to Spain.
Though Raleigh, weighed down by sickness and age, and the death of his heroic son, returned to England with a heavy heart, it does not appear that he had the remotest idea, thạt he had forfeited his life by the unhappy termination of his enterprize. He was, therefore, proceeding with all despatch for London, after having landed at Portsmouth, when it was deemed prudent at court, before he took the alarm, to despatch a visited, the party had turned aside, and young Raleigh killed in a military enterprize, which made no part of the real object of the expedition, and the commander must have felt that while every object of this voyage had been defeated, he would probably incur the censure and displeasure of his own government. Hence the bitterness of his reproaches to Keymis, reproaches which caused that gallant officer to put an end to his life. VOL. IV.NO 8.
spy with a power to apprehend him, after watching and entrapping him. It was so long before Raleigh could be induced to believe his life at hazard, that he neglected several opportunities of escape, and was, after some feeble attemps to fly, lodged in the Tower. In the mean time, the thief-taker, that had been sent after him, under the guise of friendship, taking the advantage of a mind overwhelmed by grief and sickness, had become privy to some efforts of flight and some petty artifires for delay, which were exaggerated against him, with all the zeal and malignity of a hireling. Raleigh being lodged in the Tower, it was now pretended, that his gold mine was altogether a fabrication to procure his release; and it was forgotten in the determination to sacrifice hin, that Guiana had long been a favourite object with Raleigh; that twenty years before, he had visited it at a great expense, explored it, favourably impressed the natives with his views of settlement, urged the Queen to colonize it, published a glowing account of it, and always contended that it would be found to be fruitful in gold. Nor was it adverted to, that he was not let out of prison merely' to go in search of gold, as the price of his head; and that when released by a concurrence of circumstances, he might have abandoned the enterprize if he had thought fit, or at any rate could have purchased an abandonment of it, as he had bought himself out of prison. It cannot be fairly doubted, that Raleigh, whatever might have been the faith of others, firmly believed that Guiana was a golden region, and would prove, upon a rigorous search, rich in mines; though the extent and value of them could only be ascertained by founding a colony there. This seems to have been the object which he aimed at froin first to' last; and he probably hoped by his last voyage to excite the King or private adventurers to such an undertaking; and if he had been fortunate enough to procure more undoubted evidente of golden mines there, he might have given rise to a colony, and thus restored his fame, retrieved bis fortunes, and acquired the confidence of the crown. This would appear to be a more rational account of his design, than the supposition of a bostile voyage meditated by him against Spain. The burning of the petty town of St. Thomas during his absence, seems much more like an accident in a principal action, than the object of the expedition. He could have found richer towns, and no better defended, if spoil bad been his object. He held that he had a right to penetrate into Guiana, whether he found Spaniards there or not, in pursuit of those mines, which he had discovered when he first explored the country; and the King was distinctly informed where he was going, and might have known
whether there were Spaniards there or not, and in authorizing defence implied that opposition might attend the search.
That Raleigh, knowing the pacific temper of the King, and feeling his own suspected condition, should venture upon a voyage of plunder, with the hope of making his peace with the spoils, implies a folly and audacity entirely foreign to his character.
The inevitable consequence of such a defeated project would have been immediate flight; to return to England after a piracy which had produced no 'prize-money to buy a pardon, was the last consummation of human folly. This position is so striking, that it was pretended against the notorious fact, that he had been brought back a prisoner by his crew; a •slander which he refuted with his dying breath.
The King, aware of public opinion, would not venture to bring Raleigh to trial for piracy and making war upon Spain': he knew he could not have found a jury to convict him, The old attainder was therefore resorted to. It was alleged that Ra. leigh had never been pardoned; as if a formal pardon®were necessary, when no attempt had ever been made to execrite the infamous verdict; when Cobham and Grey and Markham bad been pardoned on the scaffold; when, after fourteen years of imprisonment, Raleigh was not only released from prison, restored to his liberty, and allowed to leave the country upon a distant voyage, but entrusted by the King's commission with the command of a fleet ; appointed the governor and commander of the forces under him, and authorized to exercise martial law.
Lord Bacon had considered this commission a pardon; for when, no doubt, a formal parton, if it had been deemed necessary, could have been purchased of the Crown, Raleigh 'was told by him, "Sir, the knee-timber of your voyage is money. 'Spare your purse in this particular, for upon my life you have
a sufficient pardon for all that is passed already, the King " having under his broad seal made you admiral of your feet, and given you power of the martial law over your officers and soldiers.'
The Judges having been directed to proceed to execution against him, he was ordered to be taken from the Tower to the bar of the King's Bench. The next day he was brought into court with a fever upon him ; when the King's attorney prayed execution of the old judgment of treason, and concluded with expressing his compassion in the quaint language of the day, for (said he) the accused hath been a star at which the world have gazed, but stars may fall, nay, they must fall, when