This is the fifteenth of thirty-one readers used in the Veritas Press Phonics Museum program, designed for first grade.
The cutter went to furl its flag.
The buccaneers were the winners.
They swung from the brig's spars to storm onto the cutter.
They set upon the cutter's larder for supper.
In Boston in the year 1717—when piracy on the high seas was at its peak, before buccaneers and corsairs had been wrapped in romantic tales and filmed in lush, full color cinematic glory—a preacher named Cotton Mather condemned the evils of naval thievery and murder, calling these criminals to face up to God's holy standards. An autobiographical account of Mather's dealings with pirates brought in to Boston for trial is titled Instructions to the Living from the condition of the Dead. A Brief Relation of Remarkables in the Shipwreck of Above One Hundred Pirates Who Were Cast Away in the Ship Whido, on the Coast of New-England, April 26, 1717 . . . With Some Account of the Discourses Had with Them on the Way to Their Execution. And a Sermon Preached on Their Occasion.
Mather was unashamed of the Gospel of Christ and engaged even hardened seamen in their final days and hours before they would hang. One conversation he had with a condemned buccaneer went as follows:
" . . . in what state, in what frame, does thy death now within a few minutes of thee, find thee?"
"Very bad! Very bad!"
"You see yourself then a most miserable sinner?"
"Oh! Most miserable!"
"You have had a heart wonderfully hardened."
"Ay, and it grows harder. I don't know what is the matter with me. I can't but wonder at my self!"
"There is no help to be had, anywhere, but in the admirable Savior, whom I am now to point you to."
"Oh! God be merciful to me a sinner!"
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