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land intended to treat them as Christian men should. They took no land from them. What land they required they bought and paid for. Nearly all of New England's soil was

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come by with scrupulous honesty. The friendship of the Indians was anxiously cultivated, — sometimes from fear, oftener from pity. But nothing could stay their progress towards extinction. Inordinate drunkenness and the gradual limitation of their hunting-grounds told fatally on their numbers. And occasionally the English were forced to march against some tribe which refused to be at peace, and to inflict a defeat which left few survivors.

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CHAPTER II.

THE GREAT DISCOVERY, A. D. 1492.

It was late in the history of the world before Europe and America became known to each other. During the first fif teen centuries of the Christian era Europe was unaware of the vast continent which lay beyond the sea.

Men had been slow to establish completely their dominion over the sea. They learned very early to build ships. They availed themselves very early of the surprising power which the helm exerts over the movements of a ship. But, during many ages, they found no surer guidance upon the pathless sea than that which the position of the sun and the stars afforded. When clouds intervened to deprive them of these uncertain guides, they were helpless. They were thus obliged to keep the land in view, and content themselves with creeping timidly along the coast.

At length there was discovered a stone which the wise Creator had endowed with strange properties. It was observed that a needle brought once into contact with that stone pointed ever afterwards steadfastly to the north. Men saw that with a needle thus influenced they could guide themselves at sea as surely as on land. The mariners' compass untied the bond which held sailors to the coast, and gave them liberty to push out upon the sea.

Just when sailors were slowly learning to put confidence in the mariners' compass, there arose in Europe a vehement desire for the discovery of unknown countries. A sudden interest sprang up in all that was distant and unexplored. The strạnge fables told by travellers were greedily received. The human mind was beginning to cast off the torpor of the Middle Ages.

As intelligence increased, men became increasingly eager to ascertain the form and extent of the world in which they dwelt, and to acquaint themselves with those unknown races who were their fellow-inhabitants.

Portugal and Spain, looking out upon the boundless sea, were powerfully stirred by the new impulse. The courts of Lisbon and Madrid swarmed with adventurers who had made discoveries, or who wished the means to make them. Conspicuous among these was an enthusiast, who during eighteen years had not ceased to importune incredulous monarchs for ships and men that he might open up the secrets of the sea. He was a tall man, of grave and gentle manners, and noble though saddened look. His eye was gray, “ apt to enkindle " when he spoke of those discoveries in the making of which he felt himself to be Heaven's chosen agent. He had known hardship and sorrow in his youth, and at thirty his hair was white. His name was Christopher Columbus. In him the universal passion for discovery rose to the dignity of an inspiration.

THE STORY OF COLUMBUS.

Christopher Columbus, or Columbo, was born at Genoa, Italy, about the year 1436 (Irving). He was of a humble family, and one of his early employments was feeding swine. But he had a high spirit and a restless religious zeal, and he engaged in the life of a mariner at the age of fourteen. He thirsted for knowledge, and studied geometry, astronomy, geography, navigation, and the Latin language, at the University of Pavia. From this time he stored his mind with knowledge, and it was this studiousness that put it in his power to so interest a good Spanish prior in his schemes for exploration as to lead to his successful introduction to the court of Spain.

1492.

The Story of Columbus.

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For, one day, hungry and weary and discouraged that no one would favor his enterprises, he stopped to rest in the shadow of an old Spanish convent. It was high noon, and he asked the prior for a cup of water. The monk brought him the draught, and stopped to talk with him while he rested. He was astonished at the schemes, visions, and learning of the weary Genoese, and he promised to use his influence in his behalf with the Spanish court; and in that chance hour the destiny of the Western World, then unknown, was in effect changed, and a new continent was added to the diadems

of Aragon and Castile. Had his mind been less stored with the acquirements of his well-spent

youth, when he stopped to rest in the shadow of the convent, the map of the world might have been different to-day. The incident affords a telling lesson to the young, and aptly illustrates the value of a well-stored mind.

Columbus was convinced by his studies that the world must be spherical in form, and that there was probably land on the western side to counterbalance that on the east. He thought this land would prove to be a continuance of Asia. Lisbon was famous for the exploits of her mariners. Columbus went to Lisbon, and there married the daughter of a famous navigator, whose charts and

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SPANISH PRIOR.

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