and concluded to send them presently, for many of the reasons already touched, with this additionall that wee had not above 3 weekes beene in the fleete, and searce any watter, which would neeessitate us speedily to looke out for supply, and if wee made any enterprize to doe it suddenly.
To helpe us in this want of provisions I had Wednesday Aug. 5<* ordered the fleete from 6 to 4 short allowances.
It was about noone when wee had concluded this expedicion, and imediately as the councell of warr rose a shipp was brought in to mee that came out of Bergen on Thursday last and assured us that there were 10 East India shipps come in there, which was a great satisfaction to us in our former resolution, which was persued, and Sir Thomas TiddimaM with his squadron parted from the fleete on Sunday the 9* in the evening the wind newly springing up at S. and E., and in the night blew a hard gale.
If adventuring bee a vertue I wish it were considered whether in this enterprize wee were not prodigall enough of the Kings shipps and our owne reputation, sending to meete wee knew not what opposition either of shipping in the roade, or forts and strength upon the land (though the best inquisition wee could make was made), to part with soe considerable a squadron of the fleete, expecting the whole Dutch fleete hourely to give us Battell, with the rest without; to intrust such a part of us into passages that very probably they might not cleere themselves of that place, in the time the fleete could possibly stay without to receive them (for want of subsistance), and then certainely the Dutch fleete would arrivé, and if it found our party within (whether haveing succeeded or not) doubtless they would have run great hassard in getting off for our owne country (though all this was forethought and direction given them, what course to take if the case soe happened).
But that the adventure may not appeare foolish neither : wee were ledd thereunto by the vast consequences of our successe therein, in all probability to have given an unsupportable blow to the Hollanders, all theire East and some West India shipps being lodged thereini together with theire rich shipps from Smyrna, Spaine, Portugall, the Bay of Biscay. I am apt to beleive scarce at any time in one place soe great a mass of wealth was ever heaped together.
Wee had soe farr gained knowledge of.the place that if the winde had served to carry our Fireshipps in upon them, wee doubtednotof destroying them, though together with them the Towne of Bergen must necessarily have been destroyed also. Wee had hopes the King of Denmarke (being prepared by Sir Gilbert Talbott quickened by our express) would have followed his interest to have helped the King our master and gained more wealth in this occasion then perhapps his