The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume IV. Prose and Poetry: Sir Thomas North to Michael Drayton.

IV. The Literature of the Sea

§ 6. Sir John Hawkins

We now see the spirit of enterprise thoroughly aroused. English seamen were not only seeking to reach Cathay and the Spice islands by the north-east or the north-west, but were resolved to make an end of the barriers that were set up by Portuguese and Spanish monopolies and partitions. William Hawkins had broken with the old trade routes in his three voyages to Brazil and the coast of Guinea in the time of Henry VIII, and the successive voyages of his son, the celebrated Sir John Hawkins, in 1562, 1564 and 1567, made a great mark upon the history of the time and practically led, together with the actions of Drake, to the breach with Spain. Of his third voyage, Hawkins himself wrote an account, published in the year of his return, entitled A True Declaration of the Troublesome voyage of Mr. John Hawkins to the parts of Guinea and the West Indies in the years of our Lord 1567 and 1568. It is a vigorous and direct narrative of experiences, full of shrewd observations, and with a notable reflective quality. “If all the miseries and troublesome affaires of this sorrowfull voyage should be perfectly and thoroughly written,” says the author, “there should neede a paynfull man with his penne, and as great a time as hee had that wrote the lives and deathes of the martirs.” Other accounts were written by Miles Philips, Job Hartop and David Ingram, all survivors of the fight at San Juan de Ulloa, and their narratives have been printed by Hakluyt. For the record of the great navigations of Drake in 1570 and 1572 and his wonderful voyage of circumnavigation in 1577, we have to consult mostly the collection of Hakluyt and certain volumes published in the seventeenth century.