text 1 Extract from the Fragments of Voyages and Travels by the Captain Basil Hall, published in 1831; passage from the chapter VI. Rockall, in which there is also written about the fist expedition on Rockall. (During that expedition a thick fog came and thus the ship (HMS Endymion) could not be seen from the boats sent to the rock. When the boats managed, at twilight, to reach the ship and when they asked why it was not shot from the board to localize it, the crew answered: Why, we have been doing nothing else but blaze away every ten minutes for these last five or six hours.):
In a fine autumnal morning, just a week after we had sailed from Lough Swilly, to cruise off the north of Ireland, a sail was reported on the leebeam. We bore up constantly, but no one could make out what the chase was, nor which way was she standing at least, no two of the knowing ones could be found to agree upon these matters. Here various opinions, however, presently settled into one, or nearly so for there were still some of the high-spyers who had the honesty to confess they were puzzled.
The general opinion was, that it must be a brig with very white sail aloft, while those below were quite dark as if these royals were made of cotton, and the courses of tarpaulin, a strange anomaly in seamamship, it is true, but still the best theory we could form to explain the appearances. A short time served to dispel these fancies; for we discovered, on running close to our mysterious vessel, that we had been actually chasing a rock not a ship of oak and iron, but a solid block of granite, growing, as it were, out of the sea, at a greater distance from the mainland than, I believe, any other island, or islet, or rock of the same diminutive size, is to be found in the world.