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47

THE SHIPWRECK.

other consideration must be forgotten. The jolly-boat
was lowered from the poop, manned by the three sea-
men, and brought dexterously round to the leeward.
But it required a full half hour to take in the pas-
sengers, for the light bark was floated off on the foam-
ing crest of a wave far from the ship, then tossed back
with a force which threatened to dash it against its
side. After many attempts, which fear, as often as a
want of skill, rendered useless, the passengers were
obliged to be let down by ropes, and, suspended over
the breaking waves, must wait till the boat was again
under them. Were they then but half a minute too
late, the boat would have bounded far away from them
on the top of some mountain billow, or would be hid
from their sight in the deep, and they themselves mo-
mentarily plunged beneath the water. Mander and
Oswald, whose hope of saving their lives by means
of the boat had been completely annihilated by this
unexpected difficulty, passively followed every direction.
Idalia, terrified by these circumstances, long hesitated
to follow her father and brother, and the impatience
which her delay excited was indeed one of the causes
that when she at length ventured, the rope which was
to sustain her till she could be received into the boat,
slipped from the hands of the sailors who were holding
it on the ship, and she fell into the sea. But Godber,
who had never turned his eyes from her, sprang in-
stantly into the sea and held her up with a strong arm.
But the most powerful swimmer could not have
snatched its prey from such a raging sea. Fortunately,
however, those in the boat succeeded in getting hold
of one end of the rope, which was fastened round