Sunday, March 1, 2009

Vivid History

"[They] had geared themselves for wealth, excitement, and violent combat, so they fought and played feverishly in the enervating heat, exploited the labor of white servants and black slaves, risked sudden death from mysterious diseases or the annihilation of their profits in smashing storms and buccaneering raids. The expectations the English brought with them and the physical conditions they encountered in the islands produced a hectic mode of life that had no counterpart at home or elsewhere in English experience. This is what it meant to live beyond the line."

- Historian Richard Dunn on seventeenth-century Barbados (originally quoted in Allison Games's Migration and the Origin of the English Atlantic World - now compare that to seventeenth-century Puritan New England!)


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