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      V2 which lasted but a moment. Six hundred English sailors had silently rowed into the harbor and seized the two remaining ships, the "Prudent" and the "Bienfaisant." After the first hubbub all was silent for half an hour. Then a light glowed through the thick fog that covered the water. The "Prudent" was burning. Being aground with the low tide, her captors had set her on fire, allowing the men on board to escape to the town in her boats. The flames soon wrapped her from stem to stern; and as the broad glare pierced the illumined mists, the English sailors, reckless of shot and shell, towed her companion-ship, with all on board, to a safe anchorage under Wolfe's batteries.

      "Well what's the door from that room into the hall doing locked?"

      [2] Relation de la Prise du Port Royal par les Anglois de Baston, pice anonyme, 27 Mai, 1690.

      [Pg 110]The French province of Acadia, answering to the present Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, was a government separate from Canada and subordinate to it. Jacques Fran?ois de Brouillan, appointed to command it, landed at Chibucto, the site of Halifax, in 1702, and crossed by hills and forests to the Basin of Mines, where he found a small but prosperous settlement. "It seems to me," he wrote to the minister, "that these people live like true republicans, acknowledging neither royal authority nor courts of law."[93] It was merely that their remoteness and isolation made them independent, of necessity, so far as concerned temporal government. When Brouillan reached Port Royal he found a different state of things. The fort and garrison were in bad condition; but the adjacent settlement, primitive as it was, appeared on the whole duly submissive.[43] Penhallow, 17, 18 (ed. 1859). There was a previous meeting of conciliation between the English and the Abenakis in 1702. The Jesuit Bigot says that the Indians assured him that they had scornfully repelled the overtures of the English, and told them that they would always stand fast by the French. (Relation des Abenakis, 1702.) This is not likely. The Indians probably lied both to the Jesuit and to the English, telling to each what they knew would be most acceptable.

      His charges are strange ones from a man who was by turns the patron, advocate, and tool of the official villains who cheated the King and plundered the people. Bigot, Cadet, and the rest of the harpies that preyed on Canada looked to Vaudreuil for support, and found it. It was but three or four weeks since he had written to the Court in high eulogy of Bigot and effusive praise of Cadet, coupled with the request that a patent of nobility should be given to that notorious public thief. [811] The corruptions which disgraced his government were rife, not only in the civil administration, but also among the officers of the colony troops, over whom he had complete control. They did not, as has been seen already, extend to the officers of the line, who were outside the circle of peculation. It was these who were the habitual associates of Montcalm; and when Vaudreuil 320

      The heaviest of all his tribulations now fell upon him. His son Samuel, about sixteen years old, had been kept at Montreal under the tutelage of Father Meriel, a priest of St. Sulpice. The boy afterwards declared that he was promised great rewards if he would make the sign of the cross, and severe punishment if he would not. Proving obstinate, he was whipped till at last he made the sign; after which he was told to go to mass, and on his refusal, four stout boys of the school were ordered to drag him in. Williams presently received a letter in Samuel's handwriting, though dictated, as the father believed, by his priestly tutors. In this was recounted, with many edifying particulars, the deathbed conversion of two New England women; and to the minister's unspeakable grief and horror, the messenger who brought the letter told him that the boy himself had turned Catholic. "I have heard the news," he wrote to his recreant son, "with the most distressing, afflicting, sorrowful spirit. Oh, I pity you, I mourn over you day and night. Oh, I pity your weakness that,[Pg 84] through the craftiness of man, you are turned from the simplicity of the gospel." Though his correspondence was strictly watched, he managed to convey to the boy a long exposition, from his own pen, of the infallible truth of Calvinistic orthodoxy, and the damnable errors of Rome. This, or something else, had its effect. Samuel returned to the creed of his fathers; and being at last exchanged, went home to Deerfield, where he was chosen town-clerk in 1713, and where he soon after died.[69]V1 the visitors, seemingly appeased, smiled, gave Dieskau their hands in sign of friendship, and quietly went out again. Johnson warned him that he was not yet safe; and when the prisoner, fearing that his presence might incommode his host, asked to be removed to another tent, a captain and fifty men were ordered to guard him. In the morning an Indian, alone and apparently unarmed, loitered about the entrance, and the stupid sentinel let him pass in. He immediately drew a sword from under a sort of cloak which he wore, and tried to stab Dieskau; but was prevented by the Colonel to whom the tent belonged, who seized upon him, took away his sword, and pushed him out. As soon as his wounds would permit, Dieskau was carried on a litter, strongly escorted, to Fort Lyman, whence he was sent to Albany, and afterwards to New York. He is profuse in expressions of gratitude for the kindness shown him by the colonial officers, and especially by Johnson. Of the provincial soldiers he remarked soon after the battle that in the morning they fought like good boys, about noon like men, and in the afternoon like devils. [314] In the spring of 1757 he sailed for England, and was for a time at Falmouth; whence Colonel Matthew Sewell, fearing that he might see and learn too much, wrote to the Earl of Holdernesse: "The Baron has great penetration and quickness of apprehension. His long service under Marshal Saxe renders him a man of real consequence, to be 311


      It was too late. His glittering eyes had reminded Pen of Don's phrase: a poisonous look. It was precious evidence to her heart, but unfortunately not the sort of evidence she could take into court.


      The troops were busied for two days in hacking down the maize, digging up the caches, or hidden stores of food, and destroying their contents. The neighboring tribe of the Oneidas sent a messenger to beg peace. Frontenac replied that he would grant it, on condition that they all should migrate to Canada, and settle there; and Vaudreuil, with seven hundred men, was sent to enforce the demand. Meanwhile, a few Onondaga stragglers had been found; and among them, hidden in a hollow tree, a withered warrior, eighty years old, and nearly blind. Frontenac would have spared him; but the Indian allies, Christians from the mission villages, were so eager to burn him that it was thought inexpedient to refuse them. They tied him to the stake, and tried to shake his constancy by every torture that fire could inflict; but not a cry nor a murmur escaped him. He defied them to do their worst, till, enraged at his taunts, one of them gave him a mortal stab. "I thank you," said the old Stoic, with his last breath; "but you ought to have finished as you began, and killed me by fire. Learn from me, 414 you dogs of Frenchmen, how to endure pain; and you, dogs of dogs, their Indian allies, think what you will do when you are burned like me." [1]


      [12] An excellent account of Phips will be found in Professor Bowen's biographical notice, already cited. His Life by Cotton Mather is excessively eulogistic.Pen suspected a thrust, though it was a natural enough remark. "I ordered most of the things sent by mail," she said. "It is quicker."