Monday, June 10, 2013

Ruder places than these isles

The old navigators stigmatized Labrador as the place to which Cain was banished, no vegetation being produced among the rocks but thorns and moss. What a subject White Island would make for a painting of the Deluge!

A Finlander with whom I parleyed told me his country could show ruder places than these isles, and that the winters there were longer and colder. Parson Tucke used to say the winters at the Shoals were "a thin under-waistcoat, warmer" than on the opposite main-land. Doubtless the Orkneys or Hebrides equal these islands in desolateness and wildness of aspect, but they could scarce surpass them.