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The Cruise of the Nonsuch Buccaneer   By: (1851-1922)

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The Cruise of the "Nonsuch" Buccaneer

By Harry Collingwood An excellent book by this accomplished writer of nautical stories for teenagers. The date is 1569. The young George St. Leger arrives back from a cruise in the Bonaventure, owned locally in Plymouth, and shortly after he and his mother are told that his brother has been captured by the Spaniards, somewhere in the West Indies.

A friendly shipbuilder has a new vessel, the Nonsuch, almost ready to sail, and he agrees with George that he will finance a voyage in search of the brother, in return for half of the proceedings of the voyage, for the Nonsuch has been designed as a fast sailing buccaneer.

The crew are all local Devon men, so much of the dialogue in the book is in a strong Devonian accent, still to be heard in the outlying districts of that beautiful county.

They set off as soon as possible, knowing that the Government might well requisition the Nonsuch. There are plenty of adventures and battles, but eventually the brother is found, but in very dire straits, for he might have died if found only a few minutes later.

There is an interesting and very revealing episode where we are shown how the Spanish Inquisition worked.

Makes a very nice audiobook about eleven hours in length. THE CRUISE OF THE "NONSUCH" BUCCANEER

BY HARRY COLLINGWOOD

CHAPTER ONE.

HOW GEORGE SAINT LEGER RETURNED FROM FOREIGN PARTS.

The time was mid afternoon, the date was January the 9th, in the year of our Lord 1569; and the good town of Plymouth was basking in the hazy sunlight and mild temperature of one of those delightful days that occasionally visit the metropolis of the West Country, even in mid winter, under the beneficent influence of the Gulf Stream combined with a soft but enduring breeze from the south south east charged with warm air from the Saharan desert and the Mediterranean.

So mild and genial was the weather that certain lads, imbued with that spirit of lawlessness and adventure which seems inherent in the nature of the young Briton, had conspired together to defy the authority of their schoolmaster by playing truant from afternoon school and going to bathe in Firestone Bay. And it was while these lads were dressing, after revelling in their stolen enjoyment, that their attention was attracted by the appearance of a tall ship gliding up the Sound before the soft breathing of the languid breeze.

That she was a foreign going ship was evident at a glance, first from her size, and, secondly, from the whiteness of her canvas, bleached by long exposure to a southern sun; and as she drew nearer, the display of flags and pennons which she made, and the sounds of trumpet, fife, hautboy, and drum which floated down the wind from her seemed to indicate that her captain regarded his safe arrival in English waters as something in the nature of a triumph.

By the time that she had arrived abreast of Picklecombe Point the bathers had completely resumed their clothing and, having climbed to the highest point within easy reach, now stood interestedly watching the slow approach of the ship, her progress under the impulse of the gentle breeze being greatly retarded by the ebb tide. Speculation was rife among the little group of boys upon the question of the ship's identity, some maintaining that she must necessarily be a Plymouther, otherwise what was she doing there, while others, for no very clearly denned reason, expressed the contrary opinion.

At length one of the party who had been intently regarding the craft for several minutes, suddenly flung his cap into the air, caught it as it fell, and exclaimed excitedly as he replaced it on his head:

"I know her, I du; 'tis my Uncle Marshall's Bonaventure , whoam from the Mediterranean and Spain; I'm off to tell my uncle... Continue reading book >>




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