Argall

Argall

[ahr-gawl, -guhl]
Argall, Sir Samuel, d. 1626?, English ship captain, prominent in the early settlement of Virginia. He commanded a ship sent to Jamestown in 1609 and had charge of one of the ships Baron De la Warr brought to the failing colony in 1610. He made voyages—supposedly to Bermuda, Cape Cod, and Canada—to get needed supplies for the colonies. In 1613 on a voyage up the Potomac, Argall kidnapped Pocahontas. He commanded the Virginia Company expedition that destroyed the rival French colonial settlement on Mount Desert Island in 1613, and in 1614 he led an expedition against Port Royal (now Annapolis Royal, N.S.). As deputy governor of Virginia (1617-18), he governed autocratically, and the accusations of his opponents in the colony that he was unduly harsh with the poor have been credited by most, but not all, modern historians. He was knighted in 1623 and in 1625 as an admiral commanded a fleet off the Spanish coast.
Argall is a historical novel by American writer William T. Vollmann, which was first published in 2001. It is the third book in a planned seven-book cycle entitled Seven Dreams: A Book of North American Landscapes. (As of 2008, four of the seven books have been published.)

Argall is a retelling of the founding of the Jamestown Colony and the legend of Pocahontas and Captain John Smith. The novel is primarily written in flowery Elizabethan language, which was met with mixed critical reception; the New York Times found the language "endlessly distracting and often silly", whereas the San Francisco Chronicle found the narrative "informative and even delightful".

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