She came round into the wind like a top, and the next moment struck the reef with such a dunch as threw us all flat upon the deck, and came near to shake Mr.
The reef on which we had struck was close in under the southwest end of Mull, off a little isle they call Earraid, which lay low and black upon the larboard.
Then, in desperation, I abandoned the attempt to reef
the mainsail and resolved to try the experiment of heaving to under the close- reefed
The boat was intended for the purpose of going closer to the reef of rocks than a large vessel could safely venture.
The boat's crew proceeded to the reef of rocks, and rowed round and round it a great many times.
"Second, the Martha is on the outside reef at Poonga-Poonga, looted clean of everything portable, and ready to go to pieces with the first bit of lively sea.
The Martha missed stays going in, and inside five minutes she was on the reef and in possession.
When young Winn reefed down so suddenly, he received a surprise.
He even shook out his reefs in order to rise more quickly.
To navigate a vessel through the reefs
and shoals and passages and unlighted coasts of the coral seas is a man's work in itself.
Originally these islets had been mere sand-banks and coral reefs
awash in the sea or shallowly covered by the sea.
I have myself published separate volumes on the 'Structure and Distribution of Coral Reefs
;' on the 'Volcanic Islands visited during the Voyage of the Beagle;' and on the 'Geology of South America.' The sixth volume of the 'Geological Transactions' contains two papers of mine on the Erratic Boulders and Volcanic Phenomena of South America.