East Indies, China and Japan: March 1617

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, East Indies, China and Japan, Volume 3, 1617-1621. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1870.

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'East Indies, China and Japan: March 1617', in Calendar of State Papers Colonial, East Indies, China and Japan, Volume 3, 1617-1621, (London, 1870) pp. 19-23. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/colonial/east-indies-china-japan/vol3/pp19-23 [accessed 19 April 2024]

March 1617

March 1. Whitehall. 43. Sec. Winwood to Sir Dudley Carleton. The King complains of the froward proceeding of the States for breaking the solemn promise made by their Ambassador both to himself and to some of his principal ministers, to send over commissioners into England to treat and compound the differences now in question between our merchants and theirs. [Extract from Holland Correspondence.]
March 1. Surat. 44. John Crouther to the East India Company. Left Rich. Steele at Ispahan in October 1615 ; no sufficient excuse for his remaining there so long afterwards. Much troubled with heat outwards and with cold storms, ice, and snow homewards. Was from 17th Oct. to 13th March past travelling from Ispahan to Ajmere. His journal with the King of Persia's phirmaund he delivered to Sir Thos. Roe, copies of which he sent to the Factory at Surat. Report of his death. Was sent with Joseph Salbancke to Agra with cloth, but "such is the misery of that place" that he could sell none. Fras. Fetiplace and Robt. Younge also sent to Agra. Cloth bartered for indigo. Left Agra 17th Nov. and arrived at Surat 20th January. Report of contention in the Factory in Persia. Fit to have a Factory in Agra with a good stock of money to buy indigo where there is infinite store. Is appointed to go to Burrampoor with elephants' teeth and other commodities to assist Banggam. [Two pages. Indorsed, Received by the Globe, 5 Sept. 1617. O. C., Vol., IV., No. 453.]
March 4. Swally Road. 45. James Bickford to Sir Thos. Smythe, Governor of the East India Company. Indigo bought at Ahmedabad, the old store swept away and the price of the new much improved by the purchases of the Queen, Mocrob Khan, the Portuguese, Persians and others, some for Goa, but most for the Red Sea to Mocha and those places. Little of anything vendible at Ahmedabad. Strong waters only serve for presents, without which nothing can be done, the people being generally all so base and thieves from the beggar to the King ; they live as fishes in the sea, the great eating up the little ones ; the farmer robs the peasant, the gentleman robs the farmer, and the King robs all. The King has three grown up sons ; the eldest, whom he loves most but fears because of the affection of the people for him, is in prison, though the King swears he shall succeed him ; danger of the second son, Governor of all Guzerat, coming to the throne ; report that he means to possess himself of the kingdom on the death of his father ; he is now preparing with the King's whole army to go against the King of Deccan. Until these things come to pass sword blades will be worth little or nothing. Commodities which are likely to meet with a sale. His services and wages. [Three pages. O. C., Vol. IV., No. 454.]
March 5. Aboard the Charles. 46. Consultation held aboard the Charles. Concerning a difference in the amount of the money delivered to the factors at Surat ; certain disorders committed by Rich. Weekes and John Byrd ; and pilots for ships sailing to the port of Jask. Signed by Henry Pepwell, Thos. Kerridge, John Browne, Thos. Mitford, Wm. Methwold. [Two pages and a quarter. O. C., Vol. IV., No. 455.]
March 7. Aboard the Charles, at sea. 47. Capt. Henry Pepwell to the East India Company. The three condemned men were put ashore at the Cape, contrary to his wish, for not finding any of those formerly left there by Capt. Keeling, it was to expose these men to apparent destruction, either to perish by famine, to be devoured by wild beasts, or slain by savages, which he believed to be far different from the Company's meaning. Complaints against Connok. Account of a fight with a Portuguese carack in which the English Admiral was slain, and Capt. Pepwell dangerously wounded ; the carack making for the shore, refused to surrender and was afterwards discovered to be on fire, but whether done purposely or no, he does not know ; the new Vice Roy supposed to be on board. Valour of the Portuguese and unwonted skill of the gunners ; believes they were English and Dutch. Number of men slain and hurt. Anchored at one of the islands of Gomera, in their plots called Castro but by the Portuguese Gazidia, where they took in cattle and other provisions in exchange for paper, nothing else being had in the like reqnest ; some paper sold for a ryal of eight a quire ; gold and silver little esteemed in the island. Had sight of Diu on 18th Sept., and arrived at Surat 23rd Sept. Kerridge urges him to send a ship away to Jask, but he disapproves of it, owing to letters he had received from the Lord Ambassador and for other reasons which are stated. Found by his instructions that he could not avoid their determinations, so Alexander Childe, an honest and resolute man, was sent Master of the James thither on 8th November ; names of the factors. Complains of the abridgement of authority heretofore committed to the Chief Commander of the Fleet in all matters of merchandise. Argument with Kerridge about moneys to lade the ships at Bantam. Quarrel between the natives of Surat and the English ; Kerridge beaten and imprisoned. Proceedings of the Portuguese. Arrival of a Dutch ship at Surat from the Red Sea, laden with spices ; the Dutch have established a factory at Surat ; they grow very powerful in the Indies, searching out every place of trade with their multitude of shipping ; and have lately besieged Malacca, assisted by the King of Acheen, and destroyed three Portuguese galleons. Only one carack arrived this year at Goa. The Portuguese publish fabulous reports of their prowess to maintain their declining reputation among the natives. Complain of the arming and the scarcity of victualling the ships ; better and cheaper to victual them in England ; also against the surgeons and their medicines, and the practice of giving passage to lewd and dissolute fellows. No more Dutchmen should be entertained in the Company's ships ; their evil practices. The relading of the ships from Surat. The Guzerats generally faithless, without truth or honesty, exceeding subtle and covetous, begging most impudently and admitting trade with the English for fear and not for love. Inconvenience of the port holes for ordnance. Account of the Persian voyage ; the James returned the 7th February ; mutiny aboard the ship ; it was feared the mutineers would run away with her. News of an English boy sold in Arabia ; also of the wreck of the Samaritan on the island of St. Lawrence, the passengers and goods saved. Danger of the great delay in lading the ships for England, one which began to lade 22nd November was not laden before 28th February. Commendation of Henry Rickman, though he loveth wine more than water. Promises to intercept Sir John Fearne's ships if he meets with them, and to mar and spoil his voyage. Intends touching at Masulipatam at the request of Lucas Antheunis. [Eleven pages. Indorsed, "Received 5th Sept., 1617, by the Globe ; Read." O.C., Vol., IV. No. 456.]
March 7. Aboard the James. 48. Capt. Alexander Childe to the East India Company. Account of a mutiny on board his ship in Jask Road, and of the conduct of the ringleaders, Richard Weekes and John Byrde. [One and a quarter pages. Indorsed, "Received 5th Sept., 1617, by the Globe." O.C., Vol. IV., No. 457.]
March 8. Succadana. 49. George Cokayne to George Ball or the chief at Bantam or Jacatra. Large sale of cloth by the Dutch at less than its cost ; thinks they "do it of purpose to pick occasions," for there has since been such a trade in their factories of all sorts of people, both rich and poor. They bribe the Governor to persuade the Landak men to sell all their [precious] stones to the Dutch. Refusal of the Dutch to let Cokayne pass in their ship to Bantam ; their threats to him and tricks "to weary us out of this place." His accounts. [One page. Indorsed, "Received 22nd April." O.C., Vol. IV., No. 458.]
March 10 Laure. [Lar.] 50. George Pley to Edward Connok at Ispahan. Acknowledgments of his assured love towards him. Hopes shortly to be with him. Promises all possible service in the many difficult and treacherous oppositions they are likely to meet with. [One page. O.C., Vol. IV., No. 459.]
March 20. In the Factory of Tecoe. 51. Henry Pattesonn to Wm. Nicolls at Acheen. Arrival of, a Dutch ship ; earnest suitors for trade at Tecoe or Priaman, but did not obtain their desire in the least and departed somewhat discontented. Many wrongs require to be redressed ; the old Pollema is called upon to answer his misdemeanours to the English and the country people. Has written three letters to Benjamin Joseph, the Commander of the Fleet. In want of goods, having little or none left which are vendible. If the ship bring not a letter, they can have no trade, notwithstanding the King's grant to General Keeling. Cannot load the pepper unless money is received. The King's trade has very much hindered them, the country people not suffered to buy of them, but must also buy of the King's decayed and over priced goods. It would be well to procure more ground for the purposes of their trade. In favour of the bearer, a poor distressed Christian who has lost his junk and most of his estate. [Three pages. O.C., Vol. IV., No. 460.]
March 21. Masulipatam. 52. Lucas Antheuniss to Sir Thos. Roe, Ambassador at the Court of the Great Mogul in Ajmere. Glad to understand that his wrongs have been redressed and that he is more contented and greatly favoured. Suggestions for obtaining privileges for the coast of Bengal. Robert Jones apprehended and kept in safe custody. Death of Peter Mutton through riotous living and, drunkenness. Has been longer at Masulipatam than he expected. Ships arrived and departed ; disorders caused by the death of John Gourney. [Geo.] Barkeley, Principal at Bantam, and Capt. Castleton coming from the Moluccas, deceased. General decline of trade through the strivings of the English and Dutch against each other ; it cannot long continue but will be forced to come to an union. Rumour of a large Spanish fleet coming from the Manillas, their General Don Juan de Silva before Malacca ; the Dutch assemble all their forces to encounter them, and are making preparations with the King of Acheen, to besiege Malacca again. [One and a half pages. O.C., Vol. IV., No. 461.]
March 22./April 1. Lisbon. 53. Hugh Lee to [Sec. Winwood ?]. Ships preparing for the East Indies. The Conde Rodondo going as Viceroy ; report that the Hollanders have had a great hand against the Portugals and have taken Malacca or brought it into great distress, with which news the Portugals are much affrighted. [Extract from Correspondence, Portugal.]
March ? [On board the Globe.] 54. William Lesk, "Minister of God's Word," [late Chaplain of the Surat Factory], to the East India Company. Safe arrival of the Globe, after a dangerous fight with a Portugal carack ; death of the General. Request of Lucas (Antheuniss) for a small ship to be sent to Masulipatam to take himself and some goods to the southward ; Capt. Pepwell resolved to go with the Charles and the James, understanding how beneficial in regard of private gain a voyage from thence to Bantam might prove. In the Mogul country the Lord Ambassador lives as he can ; his entertainment is nothing answerable to his worth. Detention of the presents by the factors of Surat, from the end of September to the beginning of February. Aldworthe's messenger from the King of Persia returning with an answer rather of suit for than licence to trade there ; encouraged Connok to despatch a ship for the discovery of Jask. Merchants sent to reside in the country who were unable any longer to endure the insolence, outrages, and indiscreet government of the Factory of Surat, and had resolved rather than live another year so hellish a life to have gone home. The Armenians drive a rich trade between India and Persia. Sottish negligence of the Surat factors in not vigorously prosecuting that trade. The Unicorn might have been laden from Surat for England. The untimely death of Aldworthe and sudden departure of Edwardes greatly to be lamented, the factory being left without grave and discreet government ; evils of leaving the whole business in the hands of a company of young, wanton, riotous lads, who have brought both themselves and the nation to stink in the sight of the people of the land ; the heathen again and again earnestly suing the Lord Ambassador for some person of gravity and discretion to reside as chief factor. Complaint against Thos. Mitford. Private trade of Thos. Keridge and hindrance to the lading of the Unicorn. Conduct of Browne and Polhill. Capt. Pepwell's insufficiency. Lesk's admonitions to check disorders disregarded ; "the foul mouths of luxurious and hairbrained youths by hook and crook seeking the patronage and defence of their evil courses deserve rather disdain, neglect, and contempt than any seat or lodging in a wise breast." Great resort of merchants to Surat from all parts last year. Motion of the Ambassador for dissolving the needless multiplication of factories and reducing all into one. The best minded factors sent away from Surat. A native of Mesopotamia gone for England in the Globe, who will inform the Company of all the secrets of the Persian trade, having for 12 years traded between India and Persia. [Five pages, O. C., Vol. V., No. 462.]
March 28. Jacatra. 55. Nich. Ufflete to Geo. Barkeley, Agent at Bantam. For money to pay for "boards" if he approves of the purchase. [Half a page. O. C., Vol. V., No. 463.]