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crawling upon his belly, and a second holding him by the heels, and a third him in like manner, to secure him. The storm parted the fleet; some fell in with the Weymouth, others with the Lark; and though the violence abated, yet it continued a very heavy storm for twelve or fourteen days, by which several of the fleet were much damaged, especially in their rigging. Commodore Logg was very careful and assisting the disabled ships that were with him. After the storm was over we spied three sail to leeward. The Commodore, who had made Wentwortha chasing ship, being a prime sailer, and ordered him to wear a broad pendant, now made signal for a chase. Wentworth bore away, the man-of-war after him, at more than a mile astern. Our ship outsailed the man-of-war, sparing her all our topgallant and studdingsails. By four in the afternoon, we overhauled the sternmost of the three, so as to fling a shot across her forefoot; she brought to. But the man-of-war had left us to stand for the fleet, who kept their course, and had been long out of sight; and the men-of-war now out of sight; when we spied a tall ship to windward, bearing down towards us, whose signals, which she made, we understood not; therefore concluded it was one of the French fleet sailing from Martinico, the same time we did from Barbadoes. Capt. Wentworth called his officers and men aft, and said to them, "You see, gentlemen, the fleet and man-of-war have left us; it will cost us darkness before we can take the prize under command. A tall ship, probably a French man-of-war, is coming towards us. I am shipped upon convoy ; if we needlessly leave the convoy, and any mischance should befall us, we must make good all damages. I called you together to ask your ad vice* what you would have me to do, whether we had best run all hazards, or forego the prize, and make the best of our way for the convoy." Though the men had an eager desire to the prize, (a ship of 250 tons, well loaded from Martinico,) yet they honestly answered, "Sir, since your freight is shipped under convoy, we think you cannot safely and justly lose the convoy." Away we then stood for the fleet, and Jack Frenchman rejoiced at their narrow escape. A few days before we reached the channel of England, the Lark and those of the fleet that parted from us in the storm, joined us; and I think we had no one vessel missing. When we entered the chops of the channel, in the night, we fell in with a fleet of tall ships, which, by their actions, we knew to be men-of-war, and concluded it to be De Guy's squadron, which we heard was out upon a cruise. Wentworth's ship being an excellent sailer, he slung hisyards, and got every thing ready, that, if it should prove an enemy, he might make a running fight, and possibly escape. But how were we surprised, when, in the first peep of day, we saw an eighty-gun ship, within pistol shot, upon our starboard quarter. For the men-of-war had placed themselves, by the help of a spy-boat running among the fleet in the night, close alongside of each of our fleet they took to be a ship of force. As the day came on, Capt. Norborough, in the Lark, knew the ship that was alongside of him to be an Englishman, and immediately fired a salute; which dissipated our fears, and filled us with joy. It proved to be my Lord Dursley's squadron, sent out to look for De Guy. They spared us three capital ships to guard us up channel. Going up channel we descried three French privateers lying a-hull, one of 30 guns. Our men-of-war took one of them, and recovered two prizes from them; the other escaped. We cast anchor the next day in the Downs; the day after were piloted up the river to Gravesend, where I and some passengers took boat and arrived at Billinsgate, London, that evening, the beginning of November, after a long passage. It was truly pleasant sailing up the river. Some days after our arrival, Commodore Logg came to me on the 'Change, and, in a very complaisant manner, desired me, if there was occasion, to be witness of his care of the fleet.
I had letters to Dr. Calamy, Dr. Oldfield, Mr. Fleming, and Mr. Pomfret, ministers; and I took my opportunity to wait upon them, who received me with a great deal of goodness; to Sir William Ashurst, Mr. Harrison, and Mr. Parkhurst, to whom I sent my letters. After some weeks spent in London, I first preached for Mr. Fleming, and then at Mr. Reynolds's, Mr. Ratcliff's, Mr. Mauduit's, Dr. Calamy's, Dr. Oldfield's, Mr. Anderson's, Mr. Pomfret's, Mr. Masters's, and prayed, upon a Fast-day, both at Mr. Reynolds's and Dr. Hunt's. Besides which, I was employed at a small congregation near Eltham, the chief of which were Sir Alexander Carr and Esquire Stoddard; the rest were a poor people. This was as my parish, to which I preached constantly, unless called to preach in the city, and then I sent another in my stead. When I preached one morning, by candle-light, at Dr. Calamy's, after the service was over, I was conducted into the vestry, with three or four gentlemen, to eat a piece of bread and butter, and drink a glass of sack. While I was there, came in to us an aged gentlewoman, (hearing I was of New England,) to inquire after her brother, Col. Shrimpton, whom I knew well; and she brought a young lady (properly so called) with her, who was very pleasant with me. She asked me if all the people of my country were white, as she saw I was; for being styled in the general West Indians, she thought we were all black, as she supposed the Indians to be. She asked me how long I had been in the kingdom. When I told her a few months, she said she was surprised to think how I could learn their language in so little a time; "Methinks," said she, "you speak as plain English as I do." I told her, all my country people, being English, spake the same language I did. With many such like questions she diverted me. What strangers were even the city of London to New England, excepting a few merchants who traded with us! Being invited by Dr. Calamy to dine with him, there was present the pious and excellent lady of the famous Col. Gardiner, and a young daughter of hers, about 13 or 14 years old. I was very kindly and pleasantly entertained by the Dr. and that lady. The Dr. among other things, surprised me by saying to me, "Mr. Barnard you don't think, I hope, to carry Philomela (Miss Singer)* away from us ?" which occasioned a very agreeable conversation upon that lady, and her writings. Before we broke up, Mrs. Gardiner very kindly invited me to go with her and her daughter, in her coach, down to Scotland, obligingly telling me my journey should cost me nothing. I had a strong inclination to have embraced her generous offer; but was forced to tell her, the time of the ship I came in, returning to New England, (with which I purposed to go,) was so near at hand, that I could not prudently run the risk of being absent when she sailed. But I most humbly thanked her for her obliging request, and was heartily sorry I could not gratify my own inclination so far as to comply with it. I preached for Mr. Fleming, who was taken off from his public services by the palsy, especially in his tongue. After my first preaching to them, they were fond of my continuing in their service, especially the chief of the congregation; inso
much that my friends and acquaintance in London began to congratulate me upon the prospect of my settling in as good a congregation as most in London; and indeed the people sought for no other help, until Dr. Sacheverel's mob gutted, and burnt the bowels of Mr. Daniel Burgess's meeting-house, and then he wanting a place to preach in, and they one to preach to them, they united, and I was thrown out. Preaching for Mr. Anderson, a worthy Scotch minister, at St. James's, where was a great concourse of the Scotch nobility and gentry, he, with several of his vestry-men, expressed themselves highly pleased with my public performance and private conversation, and greatly urged me to stay and spend my days in the kingdom, saying, "We very much want men of your abilities and vigor," and that "he (Mr. Anderson,) and some others he knew had a great respect for me, would use their best endeavors to procure as good a congregation for me as any in London." I told him, I could be content to spend a few years among them, but I chose to return to New England, and there improve the remainder of my life in the service of the Gospel. "Well," said he, "if you will not abide with us, we will take no further concern about you." I returned him thanks for his kind respects to me.
While I preached at Mr. Fleming's, a gentleman that was of his congregation, who had been captain of a troop under King William, at the battle of the Boyne, was pleased to persuade me very much to stay in the kingdom, saying, "I expect an insurrection shortly in favor of the Pretender, and we very much want men of your principles, knowledge, and activity. I always keep two horses ready saddled in my stable to mount at a minute's warning, and one of them, with a pair of jack-boots, shall be at your service, to mount as a chaplain with us." I smiled, and thanked him.
Having some considerable acquaintance with Mr. Ratcliff^ at Rotherhithe, for whom I preached several times, I cannot well refuse to take notice of that pious and ingenious gentleman's catechizing and instructing children, who came to him every Tuesday, from all parts round about, and from every sect; in which work he generally spent the day. His manner was to place the males and females by themselves from ten to sixteen years old, and class them according as they could say the catechism. Beginning with prayer, he then heard the girls, and then the boys, till he had gone through the catechism with them, and then dismissed the girls, giving them a reward of a farthing or half-penny, as they performed. He then called upon the upper class of the boys to analyze such a text of Scripture as he had given them the Tuesday foregoing. Some of the lads were so expert at this exercise, as it would have surprised you, as it did me, to hear how justly they gave the occasion, coherence, intention, the several parts, the points of doctrine, and propositions of the text, and inferences resulting from it. He then dismissed the boys, giving them a farthing or half-penny, as they performed; but still retained the upper class, to whom he proposed a question to be disputed by them. He asked each boy which side of the question he was for, whether yea or nay; then placed the yeas and the nays by themselves; then asked one of the yeas what he had to say in proof of his opinion; then asked one of the nays what he had to say; and so went to the yeas and nays, one after another alternately, till he had gone through the class; when, as moderator, he summed up the force of the reasoning on both sides, and gave the true solution of the question. You would have admired, and been pleased with the reasons the youth advanced for the part they held. I remember the question disputed upon, when I was present, was, "Which is best, virtue or riches?" They said many things, on both sides, which I should have thought vastly exceeded the capacity of such youths. One prompt lad, in arguing for the preference of virtue, observed, among other things, that riches would not make a man £Ood, but would tend to improve his wickedness. "There is," said he, "the Pope of Rome, who is the richest man in the world, and yet the wickedest man alive." This came from a boy of about thirteen years old, of poor circumstances, and low education, but what he received here. When the instruction was over, Mr. Ratcliflf gave to each of these boys a penny to buy them bread for their dinner, which they had gone without for the sake of the catechism; being supplied with this stock from gentlemen of substance, as well as of his own.
I contracted a very considerable friendship with Esquire Stoddard, of the small congregation I preached to near Eltham, dined often at his house, was treated by him with great civility, and by the gentlewoman his housekeeper. She treated me once with a glass of currant wine of her own making. I was greatly pleased with it, and begged a receipt