Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter I >> Page 15

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History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
courage the rival monarchs, no less than their subjects,
from prosecuting adventures which had hitherto been
attended by nothing but disaster.
At length, in 1561, the eye of the celebrated Hu-
guenot leader, Coligny, Admiral of France, was turned
upon the shores of the new world, as a place of refuge
to which the Protestants might fly and be secure from
those persecutions which they suffered at home, and
from the worse evils which he saw awaited them.
With this object in view, he succeeded in obtaining
from Charles the Ninth, permission to plant a colo-
ny on the borders of Florida. This expedition was
entrusted to the command of John Ribault, of Dieppe,
an experienced seaman, a brave soldier, and a staunch
Protestant. He was attended by some of the young
nobility of France, and his troops were mostly- vete-
rans. These were all, most probably, voluntary adven-
turers. Charles was too bigoted a Catholic to contribute
to the prosperity of a colony which he did not protect,
and refused to avenge. His commission to the colonists,
which was sufficiently ample, was simply intended to
rid himself of a portion of his subjects, who had shown
themselves as stubborn as they were intelligent, and for
whom he subsequently devised a more summary mode
of removal, on the dreadful day of St. Bartholomew.
With two ships, Ribault set sail from France on the
18th of February, 1562. His aim was to reach the
river Combahee, called " the Jordan," to a knowledge
of which the French had been already introduced
by the discovery and disaster of Velasquez. Sailing
too far to the south, he first made land in the lati-