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Captain John Smith’s Great Plea for Settlers Essay

Words: 316, Paragraphs: 1, Pages: 2

Paper type: Essay

Captain John Smith’s 1616 treatise, “A Description of New England,” calls all the youthful, adventurous, and even the timid souls of England to join Smith on the journey to the New World. There, argues, Captain Smith, awaits great fortune, gratification, and recognition for these brave entrepreneurs. In his plea for followers, he begins with the following question:
“Who can desire more content, that hath shall means; or but only his merit toadvance his fortune, than to tread, and plant that ground he hath purchased by thehazardof his life? If he have but the taste of virtue, and magnanimity, what to such a mind canbe more pleasant, than planting and building a foundation for his posterity, got from therude earth, by God’s blessing and his own industry, without prejudice to any? (54).”
Captain Smith uses his treatise to convey to prospective co-travelers how prosperous New England life will be for them. He believes that the new settlements will be an inspiration for God’s people.He persuades by saying that though one may not be qualified for wealth and prosperity in England,the New World is plentiful and fruitful and holds promise even for those who, in England, have been looked upon as powerless and feeble. As his description of New England continues, Smith speaks about the ideal comrade he seeks for the new civilization.
“What so truly suits with honor and honesty, as the discovering thing unknown? erecting townes, peopling countries, informing the ignorant, reforming things unjust,teaching virtue; and gain[ing] to our native mother country a kingdom to attend her; find[ing] employment for those that are idle, because they know not what to do: so far from wronging any, as to cause posterity to remember thee; and remembering thee, ever honor that remember with praise? (54).”
Here Smith makes plain that he wishes for men and women of youth and faith to make the voyage and to settle ‘New Engla…

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