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Wesley's Letters and Friends

1773. Friday, January 1.--We (as usual) solemnly renewed our covenant with God.

Monday, 4.--I began revising my letters and papers. One of them was written above a hundred and fifty years ago (in 1619), I suppose, by my grandfather's father, to her he was to marry in a few days. Several were written by my brothers and me when at school, many while we were at the University, abundantly testifying (if it be worth knowing) what was our aim from our youth up.

Thursday, 7.--l called where a child was dying of the smallpox and rescued her from death and the doctors; they were giving her saffron, etc., to drive them out! Can anyone be so ignorant still?

We observed Friday, 8, as a day of fasting and prayer, on account of the general want of trade and scarcity of provisions. The next week I made an end of revising my letters; and from those I had both written and received, I could not but make one remark--that for above these forty years, of all the friends who were once the most closely united and afterwards separated from me, every one had separated himself! He left me, not I him. And from both mine and their own letters, the steps whereby they did this are clear and undeniable.

Wednesday, February 24.--A very remarkable paragraph was published in one of the Edinburgh papers:

"We learn from the Rosses, in the county of Donegal, in Ireland, that a Danish man-of-war, called the North Crown, commanded by the Baron D'Ulfeld, arrived off those islands, from a voyage of discovery toward the Pole. They sailed from Bornholme, in Norway the first of June, 1769, with stores for eighteen months, and some able astronomers, landscape painters, and every apparatus suitable to the design; and steering N by E half E, for thirty- seven days, with a fair wind and open sea, discovered a large rocky island, which having doubled, they proceeded WNW, till the seventeenth of September, when they found themselves in a strong current, between two high lands, seemingly about ten leagues distant, which carried them at a prodigious rate for three days when, to their great joy, they saw the mainland of America that lies between the most westerly part of the settlements on Hudson's River and California. Here they anchored in a fine cove and found abundance of wild deer and buffaloes, with which they victualed; and sailing southward, in three months got into the Pacific Ocean, and returned by the Straits of Le Maine and the West India Islands. They have brought many curiosities, particularly a prodigious bird, called a contor [condor], or contose, about six feet in height, of the eagle kind, whose wings, expanded, measure twenty-two feet four inches. After bartering some skins with the country people, for meal, rum, and other necessaries, they sailed for Bremen, to wait the thaw, previous to their return to Copenhagen.

"February 24, 1773."

If this account is true, one would hope not only the King of Denmark will avail himself of so important a discovery.

I came to Liverpool on Saturday, March 20.

Monday, 27.--The captain was in haste to get my chaise on board. About eleven we went on board ourselves, and before one, we ran on a sand bank. So, the ship being fast, we went ashore again.

Tuesday, 23.--We embarked again on board the Freemason, with six other cabin passengers, four gentlemen, and two gentlewomen, one of whom was daily afraid of falling in labor. This gave me several opportunities of talking closely and of praying with her and her companion. We did not come abreast of Holyhead till Thursday morning. We had then a strong gale and a rolling sea. Most of the passengers were sick enough, but it did not affect me at all. In the evening the gentlemen desired I would pray with them, so we concluded the day in a solemn and comfortable manner.

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