21. The Island of the Shouting Birds

ONE NIGHT, soon afterwards, they heard in the distance, towards the north-east, a confused murmur of voices, as if from a great choir singing psalms or chanting.

They followed the direction of the sound, in order to find out where it came from; and at noon the next day, they came to an island, very hilly and lofty.

It was full of birds, some black, some brown, and some speckled, and they were all shouting and speaking with human voices; it was from them that the great clamour came. The tumult of chattering was so loud that they could not understand any of the speech; and the noise was so disturbing, so loud, that none of the voyagers could tolerate it.

They sailed away without landing, happy to be away from the cacophony.


Return to Index

Leave a Reply