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Thomas, in the act of launching his harpoon, lost his foothold, and pitched headlong into a living tomb! The jaws of the monster closed upon his body, leaving the legs of his victim projecting from the mouth!

The frightened mate lost his presence of mind, and omitted to give the word to back off. He held his steering oar without the power of motion. But Imbert, new as he was to the scene, seeing the opportunity to be avenged for the loss of his companion, seized the sharp lance of the mate, and plunged it to the hilt in the body of the whale, as he turned to escape. In an instant the boat and the crew were driven into the air by a stroke of the animal's tail. The frail bark was shivered into a thousand pieces; and the men, bruised and lacerated, fell into the broad ocean.

All that had thus transpired was seen from the ships; and boats were despatched forthwith to the relief of the wounded crew. Some had seized upon fragments of the wreck; while others sustained themselves with pieces of broken oars, supported beneath by the strong saline buoyancy so eminently peculiar to the unfathomable depths of the ocean.

The unfortunate crew were rescued in time to witness the last agonies of the desperate whale, which, like Samson crushing the temple in his might, dealt death and destruction on all sides, while he himself was overwhelmed in the general ruin.

The animal, blind with rage, and feeling the sting of the death-wound in his heart, whirled round the ships in irregular circles for a short time, and then descended. The crews lay upon their oars, watching where he would next appear, while the ships were hove-to, to await the result.

Suddenly a mighty mass emerged from the water, and shot up perpendicularly, with inconceivable velocity, into the air. It was the whale; and the effort was his last expiring throe! He fell dead; but, in his descent, he pitched headlong across the bows of the

Grampus, and in one fell swoop carried away the entire forepart of the vessel!

The crew escaped, by throwing themselves into the boats alongside, and rowing quickly off. The gallant ship instantly filled with water, and settled away from their sight.

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Ingloriously, and yield?—No !-

Though you were legions of accursed spirits,
Thus would I fly among you!"

No more!-Betake thee to thy task at home ;-
There guide the spindle and direct the loom.
Hector to Andromache.

A FULL year had passed since the departure of Jethro Coffin from Sherburne, and no tidings had as yet been received, intimating his intention to return. His protracted absence did not, however, create uneasiness in the minds of his friends; for it must be borne in mind by the reader, that arrivals from England were, at that time, few and far between. There were not then, as now, regular days of departure for packets, and almost as regular periods of arrival. A year intervening between the embarkation and return of an individual to the colonies was therefore almost a certainty; no matter how trivial may have been the business or the object that called the voyager from his home. It is different nowadays. The sixth part of that time is sufficient to make a passage to Europe and back again, and yet leave a reservation of a portion of the time for the transaction of business or the pursuit of pleasure. It is, with us, an age of fleet ships, skimming steamboats, and flying railroad vehicles, that almost annihilate time and

distance. It is a mechanical age-an Augustan era, prolific in the development of mechanical genius.

Soon after the ships of Jethro had doubled The Horn, hostilities cominenced between the mother country and the colonies. It was, for the time, the death-blow to the prosperity of Nantucket; and the distress which fell upon the people, as much from their isolated situation as from any other cause, was severe beyond measure. Their ships were swept from the ocean; their trade with the continent annihilated, and, consequently, their supplies cut off. They were without the power of resistance or of self-protection. They were subject alike to pillage from either party; and their flocks were carried away by both friend and foe. A fishing-smack with a single gun could at any time lay the unresisting town under contribution. Each arrival from a whaling voyage, instead of furnishing the means of support to the inhabitants, was the cause of lessening their stores, by the introduction of an additional number of consumers. Interdicted, as they were, from intercourse with the continent, without grain, without bread, and without fuel-in short, without the common necessaries of life, but with abundant pecuniary means under other circumstances, the islanders were reduced to a condition so straitened, that it was not only sad to contemplate, but appalling to think of.

It was in the midst of this general distress that the genius and cupidity of Miriam Coffin shone forth, to the unfeigned astonishment of the islanders. Foreseeing the advantages that must naturally accrue to her by the course she had almost immediately adopted, she despatched one of her husband's smaller vessels to NewYork, with a letter to Admiral Digby, who commanded the squadrons cruising on our coast. In this paper she was careful to express her devoted loyalty to King George, and, with well-turned phrase, to represent the extremities to which the people were reduced. Miriam concluded her epistle by humbly asking permission to

send her vessels to New-York, and the privilege of trading between that city and Sherburne.

To this arrangement the admiral assented, and granted a free passport, running in the name of Miriam, to trade to and fro but (as she had insinuated in her letter that by far the largest portion of the people were rank whigs in principle) he gave her to understand that the privilege was the meed of her loyalty alone, and not a boon to the people; and therefore that she, above all others, should enjoy a monopoly of the trade.

This decision was precisely what Miriam aimed at. On the other hand, in order to prevent supplies from being introduced by the Americans, she took care to have the false information spread abroad upon the neighbouring continent, that the islanders were all thoroughgoing tories, and adhered to the crown. In this posture of affairs there was, of course, no sympathy for the Nantucket people, either from whig or tory. She thus succeeded in her plans; and for a considerable time the source of supply was confined to herself alone.

In a short period after these successful arrangements had been effected, it was observed that the warehouse of Miriam was groaning, not only with substantial provisions of every sort, but even with such luxuries as the islanders had been accustomed to purchase in the days of their brightest prosperity. Her small vessels were constantly employed between the two ports; and riches without bounds flowed into her coffers. For her merchandise she would receive, in the way of barter, the oil and the candles of the island-traders, at a large and ruinous discount to those who held the commodities; and, when these were exhausted, she dealt with them for their ships at the wharves, and for their houses, until she became possessed of property, or the representatives of wealth, at least, in mortgages, to an amount exceeding her most sanguine dreams of abundance.

By-and-by, however, it came to pass that Miriam could no longer furnish the ready and tangible means

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