Edward Everett Hale

Gosnold at Cuttyhunk

American Antiquarian Society

Worcester (Mass.), 1902
bibliothèque insulaire
N.E. of America
Gosnold at Cuttyhunk / Edward E. Hale. - Worcester (Mass.) : Press of Charles Hamilton, 1902. - 7 p. ; 26 cm. - (Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society at the semi-annual meeting held in Boston, April 1902).
Après Verrazano qui n'aurait fait que passer en 1524, Bartholomew Gosnold 1 est le “ découvreur officiel ” de Cuttyhunk et de sa grande voisine Martha's Vineyard.

L'auteur s'emploie ici à démontrer que Shakespeare se serait inspiré de la relation du voyage de Gosnold — son passage à Cuttyhunk — en rédigeant “ La Tempête ”.
1. Cf. Lincoln A. Dexter (ed.), “ The Gosnold discoveries in the North part of Virginia, 1602, now Cape Cod and the islands, Massachusetts, accorded to the relations by Gabriel Archer and John Brereton ”, Brooklin (Mass.) : L.A. Dexter, 1982
EXTRAIT Any person who gave the account of the Gosnold voyage in brief would say that, « here was a small island, heavily wooded, with little brooks of fresh water where the ship could supply itself. » He would describe the arrival of the small vessel in one of those coves from which two partie of men go out, one of whom contracted a jealousy for the other, — the « gentlemen adventurers » and the seamen. What the « Gentlemen Adventurers, » who write our accounts, say of the seamen is greatly to their discredit. These parties go to work separately, and the gentlemen cut sassafras logs for the return cargo. They are lost out at night in a storm. They are obliged to feed on the products of the island, which prove to be mussels from the streams, pig-nuts dug from the ground and seamels or sea-mews from the rocks. In their description of the island they speak of it as a small island, heavily wooded, with little brooks of fresh water.

Now, when you turn to Shakespeare, you find that the vessel arrives at one of the coves of an island after the tempest, from which two parties straggle off into the island, which is small and heavily wooded, with little brooks of fresh water. One of these parties is kept out in the woods in a storm of thunder and lightning, and the food of the island appears in what Caliban says to the sailors when he is trying to persuade them to give him more liquor.
   « I'll show thee the best springs ; I'll pluck thee berries ; »
   « With my long nails I'll dig thee pig-nuts, show thee a jay's nest, and instruct thee how to snare the nimble marmoset. I'll bring thee to clustering filberts ; I'll get thee young sea-mews from the rock. »

This parallel was so close that I immediately looked up the relation of Gosnold's voyage to Shakespeare and « The Tempest. »

pp. 99-100
  • reprint as « Prospero's island » with an introduction by Henry Cabot Lodge, New York : Dramatic museum of Columbia university, 1919

mise-à-jour : 9 mars 2017
Bartholomew Gosnold Monument, Cuttyhunk (MA) : John Phelan
Bartholomew Gosnold Monument, Cuttyhunk MA (photo John Phelan)