He was, however, pursued by his guardian, and his place of retreat discovered. Young Burr, one day, while busily employed, perceived his uncle coming down the wharf, and immediately ran up the shrouds, and clambered to the topgallant-mast head. Here he remained, and peremptorily refused to come down, or be taken down, until all the preliminaries of a treaty of peace were agreed upon.

To be even with him, I jumped on his shoulders, and down we slipped together, till we reached the topmast cross-trees. There I got a rope, and, lashing him to the heel of the topgallant-mast, sang out to the hands in the top that they might see what I had done. You may be sure that they were very much astonished. "I was a great favourite among the crew, and ran no slight chance of being spoilt.

While he was engaged thus, the ice, driving against the standing rigging and the fore-, main- and mizzen-masts, snapped the shrouds. The foretop and topgallant-mast came down with a run and hung in wreckage on the fore-mast, with the fore-yard vertical. The main-mast followed immediately, snapping off about 10 ft. above the main deck.

The sloop-of-war no sooner filled her maintop-sail than she drew ahead, leaving plenty of room for the brigantine to make sail on her course. Spike did not profit by this opening, however, but he sent several men aloft forward, where they appeared to be getting ready to send down the upper yards and the topgallant-mast.

He was, however, pursued by his guardian, and his place of retreat discovered. Young Burr, one day, while busily employed, perceived his uncle coming down the wharf, and immediately ran up the shrouds, and clambered to the topgallant-mast head. Here he remained, and peremptorily refused to come down, or be taken down, until all the preliminaries of a treaty of peace were agreed upon.

So we climbed up to the cap of the topgallant-mast in company; but, as far apart as the poles, though so close together. Then, each of us set about in his own fashion, without minding the other, to disentangle the fly of the pennant, which had been whipped by the wind round the halliards till it had formed itself into half a dozen granny's knots.

The brig's real lower yard was lowered on the bulwarks, while her royal yard was sent down altogether, and the topgallant-mast was lowered until the heel rested on the topsail yard, all of which, in the night, gave the gear forward very much the appearance of that of a fore-topsail schooner, instead of that of a half-rigged brig, as the craft really was.

Above the main-mast was a top-mast or topgallant-mast, called the distaff; the yards were hoisted up much as in the present day, and were secured by parrels or hoops to the mast. They were fitted with topping-lifts and braces. Each mast carried two square sails, and in after days the Romans introduced triangular sails.

Be that as it may, we had just made it noon when the quarter-master called our attention to the fact that the barque's people had loosed their main-topgallant-sail and were sheeting it home over the double-reefed topsail. It was an imprudent thing to do, however, for the sail had scarcely been set ten minutes when the topgallant-mast went over the side, snapped short off by the cap.

We were holding on to the royal lift and brace, both of us, each with one hand while with the other we tried to unloose the closely knotted bunting, our faces almost touching each other, and still without ever saying a word; when, all at once, through some one having neglected his duty when the topgallant-mast was sent aloft after the gale, the ends of the lift and brace slipped off the jack, to which they had been only loosely secured, leaving `Ugly' and I suspended in the air partly by the signal halliards and partly by the flag, which latter parted with a ripping sound that I hear now in my ears as I speak of it.