Peaked ridges of purple mountains rose to the left of
the ship, - Finisterre and the coast of Galicia.
The sky above was
cloudless and shining; the vast dark ocean smiled peacefully round
about, and the ship went rolling over it, as the people within were
praising the Maker of all.
In honour of the day, it was announced that the passengers would be
regaled with champagne at dinner; and accordingly that exhilarating
liquor was served out in decent profusion, the company drinking the
Captain's health with the customary orations of compliment and
acknowledgment. This feast was scarcely ended, when we found
ourselves rounding the headland into Vigo Bay, passing a grim and
tall island of rocky mountains which lies in the centre of the bay.
Whether it is that the sight of land is always welcome to weary
mariners, after the perils and annoyances of a voyage of three
days, or whether the place is in itself extraordinarily beautiful,
need not be argued; but I have seldom seen anything more charming
than the amphitheatre of noble hills into which the ship now came -
all the features of the landscape being lighted up with a wonderful
clearness of air, which rarely adorns a view in our country. The
sun had not yet set, but over the town and lofty rocky castle of
Vigo a great ghost of a moon was faintly visible, which blazed out
brighter and brighter as the superior luminary retired behind the
purple mountains of the headland to rest.
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