departed, left no forwarding address
21st february 2006
The vehement persuasion and entreaty of his friends could nothing avail, to divert him from a wilful resolution of going through in his Frigate the Squirrell, which was overcharged upon its decks, with fights, nettings and small artillery, too cumbersome for so small a boat that was to pass through the Ocean sea at that season of the year, when by course we might expect much storm of foul weather . . . but when he was entreated by the Captain, Master, and other his well willers of the Hind, not to venture in the Frigate, this was his answer: I will not forsake my little company going homeward, with whom I have passed so many storms and perils.
We had brought the Islands of Azores south of us, yet we then kept much to the north, until we had got into the height and elevation of England: we met with very foul weather, and terrible seas, breaking short and high Pyramid-wise. Howsoever it cometh to pass, men which all their life-time had occupied the Sea never saw more outrageous Seas. We had also upon our main yard an apparition of a little fire by night, which seamen do call Castor and Pollux. But we had only one, which they take an evil sign of more tempest.
Monday the ninth of September, in the afternoon, the Frigate was near cast away, oppressed by waves, yet at that time recovered: and giving forth signs of joy, the General sitting abaft with a book in his hand, cried out unto us in the Hind (so oft as we did approach within hearing) We are as near to heaven by sea as by land.
The same Monday night, about twelve of the clock or not long after, the Frigate being ahead of us in the Golden Hind, suddenly her lights were out, whereof as it were in a moment we lost the sight, and withal our watch cried, the General was cast away, which was so true. For in that moment, the Frigate was devoured and swallowed up of the Sea. Yet still we looked out all that night, and ever after, until we arrived upon the coast of England.
- Hakluyt, Voyages (the death of Sir Humphrey Gilbert, 1585)