Printed for the Hakluyt Society,
Text on page 22
MEETING WITH SPILBERG.
advances out into the sea further than that of Good Hope by-fifteen leagues, and is situate under the altitude of 35 degrees of Southern latitude. It is named the Cape of the Needles, because at this place the compasses or needles remained fixed, pointing directly to the north, without any declination to the east or the west; when it is doubled, they begin to decline to the north-east. On this day we sighted two Hollander ships and a pinnace coming out of a bay that is by the Cape des Aguilles, called Baya Sardeigna,1 where they had gone for refreshment. It was, however, impossible for us to approach one another all the day long, because of the wind and of the sea, which was running high and tempestuous ; nevertheless, their smaller ship, with great difficulty, ran down the wind toward us and told us who they were. On the morrow we came together, and for two days visited each other and gave mutual entertainment with all friendliness. They were very small ships from Camfer,2 in Zeeland, their General by name Spilbert.3 They told us it was them we had sighted on the Guinea coast, and that had our General waited until they had sent their pinnace after us, the misfortune that befell us at the island of Anabon
As to the non-variation of the compass, see Davis (Voyages, Hakl. Soc., p. 136): aWe doubled Cape das Agulios, which is the most southerly promontorie of Africa, where the compasse hath no variation.a
1 Saldanha bay, called after Antonio de Saldanha, who went to India in 1503. Baya Sardeigna is a misnomer, which Rivara accepts by his translation, Bahia das Sardinhas (Viagem de Pyrard, i, p. 18). As pointed out by Mr. Corney (Middleton's Voy., Hakl. Soc., p. 6) and Mr. Clements Markham (Lancaster's Voy., Hakl. Soc., p. 62), the Saldanha Bay of the Portuguese, Dutch, and English voyagers of this period is our Table Bay. Pyrardas statement that the Dutch were met coming out of a bay near the Needles Cape is incorrect; Spilberg had put into Table Bay and nowhere else, and the two fleets met off the Cape of Good Hope (Spilberg, Rect des Voy., ii, 438-44).
2 Veer, Terveer, or Campveer, a small town and fort commanding the Yeergat, on the north side of the island of Walcheren. It was taken by the British during the ill-fated expedition of 1809.
3 Joris van Spilbergen, generally called Spilberg.3 Joris van Spilbergen, generally called Spilberg.