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THE CANADIAN ARMADA   271

hour,—for, while there were vessels in the fleet capable of doing over twenty knots, the pace had to be regulated by the capacity of the slowest ships.

The better-informed members of the Contingent looked askance at the accompanying warships. All were slow, obsolete vessels. The Diana, Eclipse, and Talbot were cruisers of the Talbot Class, which had been built in 1897-98 and had a speed of less than twenty knots. The Charybdis of the Astraca Class had been completed in 1895, and was no faster than the others. The German warships Karlsruhe and Dresden were known to be at large in the Atlantic. The former was one of the latest fast light cruisers, capable of making at least twenty-eight knots; the latter was a protected cruiser, about six years old, with a speed of 24 knots. Either of these vessels would have been more than a match for the warships convoying the Canadian Armada. But the vessels under Admiral Wemyss were merely shepherding the Canadian fleet. Great Britain had her real dogsof-war scattered over the Atlantic seeing to it that no dangerous enemy vessel approached within striking range of the transports. On the second day after leaving Gaspe Bay a cloud of smoke was seen on the horizon, and slowly a great grey battleship of the pre-dreadnought type hove in sight and took up a position on the flank of the fleet. It was the Glory of the Canopus Class, a more heavily armed and better-protected ship than any of the other vessels of the convoy. But she was even slower than any of them, having a speed of only eighteen knots; evidently the Admiralty had little fear of German attack on the American side of the Atlantic.

The fleet as it passed into the Gulf of St. Lawrence took the southern passage between Newfoundland and Cape Breton. On the 5th a steamship appeared on the left of the line and the Eclipse turned aside to examine her. It was the Bruce, plying between Newfoundland and Cape Breton. The news of the sailing of the Contingent had been kept a profound secret, but, from the


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