National Geographic : 1948 Apr
In Little Gidding Churchyard, Huntingdonshire, Lie Two Champions of Virginia After dissolution of the Virginia Company, the brothers Nicholas and John Ferrar retired to a religious community here and prayed for the New World colony which they had helped to guide. John's daughter, born in Little Gidding, was named Virginia that she might remind him of the Jamestown endeavor. Parlia ment disbanded the Ferrar community in 1647. Its old farm cottages are no more, but the church, one of England's smallest, remains a shrine to American pilgrims (pages 458 and 461). information concerning the countries of con tinental Europe, "for of Virginia there be so many tractates, divine, human, historical, po litical, or call them as you please, as no further intelligence I dare desire." Matthew Page Andrews draws our attention to the fact that the famous Virginian charter was borne to America by the expedition that sailed in 1609, and that the "Charter Ship," the Sea Venture, was wrecked on the coast "of the still vex'd Bermoothes," immortalized in The Tempest. William Strachey's narra tive is supposed to have provided Shakespeare with material for the play. The name of Sir George Somers will always be associated with the great chapter of coloni zation, as, with Christopher Newport, he com manded the fleet of nine vessels that sailed from Plymouth in 1609. The ship which Somers was aboard was the one wrecked on Bermuda. Certainly Virginia, if she had had the choos ing of her sponsors, could hardly have brought together a more remarkable group of men and women. We have the wayward, volatile, and yet fundamentally sagacious Elizabeth; Raleigh, the man of vision, whatever his personal ambitions and shortcomings; Hakluyt, the consecrated man of letters; John Smith, the "venturer"; Christopher Newport, the master mariner; George Somers, "a lamb on shore, a lion on sea"; Edwin Sandys, one of the great figures in man's march toward freedom; George Herbert, the "Saint of Bemerton"; Nicholas Ferrar, mystic and man of affairs; Southampton, courtier and patron of literature; and, in the background, the elusive shadow of the mighty Shakespeare.* * For additional articles on Great Britain, London, Virginia, etc., see "NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE Cumulative Index, 1899-1947."