At the end of 1618, a blazing green star soared across the night sky over the Northern Hemisphere. From the Philippines to the Great Lakes, the comet became a sensation and a symbol, a warning of doom or a promise of salvation. Two years later, as the Pilgrims prepared to sail across the Atlantic on board the Mayflower, the atmosphere remained charged with fear and expectation. Men and women readied themselves for war, pestilence or divine retribution. Against this background, and amid deep economic depression, the Pilgrims conceived their enterprise of exile.Within a decade, despite crisis and catastrophe, they built a thriving settlement at New Plymouth, based on beaver fur, corn and cattle. In doing so, they laid the foundations for Massachusetts, New England and a new nation. Using a wealth of new evidence - from landscape, archaeology and hundreds of overlooked or neglected documents - Nick Bunker gives a vivid and strikingly original account of the Mayflower project and the first decade of the Plymouth Colony. Making Haste from Babylon tells the story of the early pilgrim settlers in unrivalled depth, from their roots in religious conflict and village strife at home to their final creation of a permanent foothold in America.