East Indies: September 1631

Pages 181-205

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, East Indies and Persia, Volume 8, 1630-1634. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1892.

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September 1631

Sept. 5.
207. Consultation held in Bantam by Jno. Skibbowe, Wm. Hoare, Ant. Verneworthy, John Banggam, Lawr. Henley, John Russell, Wm. Mathewe, and Gerald Pinson. Resolved that the President and Council's orders of the 29th Sept. 1630 and 22nd April 1631 should be duly observed in the repartition of house expenses, charges of merchandize, and that what had been contrary thereto charged to account by George Willoughby should be rectified in the books now in action. And further, that in regard the Second Joint Stock stands much in debt in Surat, and that divers creditors have called for their monies which the second general voyage hath been constrained to satisfy, the moiety of the 50 tons of cloves remaining in this factory be transported to the said voyage for satisfaction of said debts at the price of 80 Rs. of 8 p pecul, and the rest sent for England upon the next ships. Endorsed, "About the sale of cloves from the Joint Stock to the second Persia voyage." 1 p. [O. C., Vol. XIII., No. 1372.]
Sept. 6.
208. Peter Mundy to John Skibbowe in Surat. Perceives by a letter received from Mr. Glascocke the 2nd current, what he has done for him, not only in paying Glascock Ms. 409·13 which were in his hands belonging to Mundy, but also impresting him Ms. 500 more, which could never come him better to pass, and for which he renders many humble and hearty thanks. Understands he is gone for Bantam and that on his return he is resolved for England, on which occasion will make bold to trouble him again with a letter to Job. Harby. Prays the Almighty to prosper his voyage and bring him to that good land where they all hope to arrive at length. ½ p. [O. C., Vol. XIII., No. 1373.]
Aug. 29.
209. John Skibbowe, Wm. Hoare, Ant. Vernworthy, and John Banggam, to Capt. Matthew Morton. Have been informed of some sinister courses taken by George Willoughby, now prisoner aboard him by order of the President and Council of Surat, and for that the same may prove prejudicial to their Masters affairs, require him to appoint Willoughby a cabin under the half-deck, and not suffer him to speak with any person that comes aboard without their warrant. 1 p. [O. C., Vol. XIII., No. 1371.]
Sept. 8.
210. President Thomas Rastell and Council to the Agent and Factors at Bantam. Have received, since their last of 22nd April by the James and Blessing, theirs of 13th April, subscribed by George Willoughby and others, and another of the 14th by Agent Hoare alone, to which will reply as proceeding from one pen. Their advices of the Abigail and Jude's return full fraugh with pepper from Jambi, the pinnace John's disposure that way and disastrous success through the Master's improvidence, and the Dove's arrival from the coast and dispatch for Macassar, commend their diligence, and reserving sorrow for the Company's loss, yield good satisfaction. Commend their industry and wisdom in filling and dispeeding the Swallow for England to advise their want of shipping; though out of the advices by the London, the Company discerned encouragement enough to prepare the Palsgrave and London for the southwards, which, with another ship, they conceived sufficient for a final clearing of the Old Stock's remains out of India; but if the Charles and Jonas, which departed "Cape Hope" 16th Nov. last, should arrive in England, as most probably they might, ere those are set out, are strong in opinion that, induced by the noise of the rumoured forces of the Portugal, and this enthralling debt in India with it's consuming canker of interest, the Company would alter their resolution by diverting the course of their ships immediately for Surat, first here to redeem their business out of slavery and peril. Where in answer to the President's letter of 29th Sept. they take knowledge of the superintendence of all the Company's affairs in India conferred on Mr. Rastell, though on Mr. Hoare's part they find willing conformity, yet observing a sly reservation, as formerly in the same words from the Coast, in Mr. Willoughby's lines, have sent by Mr. Skibbowe the Company's letter for more ample satisfaction to such who are scrupulous, and to prevent cavil in any sinisterly minded. But presume that unquiet spirit is ere this justly removed, and Mr. Hoare deservedly resettled in his room. If the Company were, through misinformation, misled in subjecting his employment to the direction of a man inferior both in service and ability, when they discover their misguidance it will add to his repute. Their opinions, concurring with those of all the Company's most experienced servants, have confirmed them in the resolution of continuing both factories of Armagon and Masulipatam, and completing the yet improperly called fortifications at the former place and the rather in respect of the Company's late forward inclination to maintain their rights there, by establishing a Capt. and consenting to the charge of its continuance, which by the projection of John Hunter will be easily defrayed by the constant employment of a small ship and pinnace on that coast. Find much disagreement between Mr. Willoughby's letter, confirmed by their joint subscriptions, and the agents, in the rate of pepper, the first accounting but 7½ Rs. per pecul for cost and custom, and the latter 9¼, which on the whole quantity of 12,000 peculs will amount to Rs. 21,000 more than Willoughby assigns to the purchase, and he exceeds them again in the conceipted gains upon India clothing. Let this be reconciled in their next. Beg them to take notice that if 70,000 Rs. in Surat and coast goods will produce but 130,000 Rs., and that the prime cost of 12,000 peculs of pepper with 200 bahars of cloves shall amount to 160,000 Rs., there appears a manifest want of 30,000 Ryals, inasmuch as the 30,000 Rs. which they also demand in specie must run out they say in Custom and factory charges, which mistake rectify in their next. Meantime, in providing India goods, intend to hold to the greater proportion (we should not call it Willoughby's, for he filched that and other advices from Mr. Sill by intercepting his letters), whereby they will be better furnished for procuring gold at Jambi and Japara to be returned to Surat in lieu of such Rs. as we must spare out of the weak supply of 30,000l. intended by the shortly expected fleet, which with as much means more as will purchase only 600 bales of silk in Persia, the Company assign for the lading home of the Mary, Exchange, and Speedwell, only the Speedwell they ordain for Sumatra to procure her own belly full of pepper, but seem wholly to exclude Bantam this year, except for the coarse coast goods appointed by the Hopewell. Which has doubtless proceeded from a more than ordinary dullness in the vend of that drug pepper, else the charge of the southern factories would have been considered too great a weight for so weak a prop, when the cavidal does little more than double its charge in India. But God has provided otherwise for them, for resolving to set an earlier commencement to their southern investments, so as not to lose the monsoon for Macassar. Were too far engaged before receipt of the Company's letters to fall off; and t'was happy it fell out so, considering the misery of these parts, Guzerat especially, Serquez indigo being at excessive rates, all manner of India cloth too dear by much to render it profitable in England, and there are no other goods, except Agra indigo, to be had for money; so it came well to pass to have gleaned up the remains of old stores in Ahmedabad and Cambaya to procure their chief lading from the southwards. But they will find them extremely dear, and being the Dutch, for want of means, have sat still this year, they may, if provident in managing, improve their sales in some answerable proportion. The great diligence of Mr. Hoare in perfecting the Old Stock's accounts sent home by the London and Swallow will sufficiently plead for him at home. Expect the final clause by the James, praying them to conform therein to the course prescribed in their last for transport of remains from one account to another and division of the general charges, disallowing the unsolid and too partial reasons of Mr. Willoughby. Their opinion "oppugning ours" proposing some after course, as they think, touching the loan of spices from the Old Stock remaining to the second general voyage; answer, that to take the pepper at Surat at prices current would be only to transfer the debt from the Old Stock to the other, and in no way ease their thraldom, it being impossible to convert such a bulk of pepper into money, Persia being glutted already. Would prefer the conversion of pepper into silk before its sending into England, but the King's warehouses are full and he has lately revoked his agreement to take any more from the Dutch. Some small quantity may yearly sell to benefit at the port, which in part begat their demand of 300 or 400 ts. above the James's lading, therewith in part to extinguish the Old Stock's debts; but the main inducement was their own fear to fall short of lading for the homebound William and Blessing. But the Persian, more benignant to the English than the Dutch, may be hereafter drawn to contract with the English when his pepper burden is a little lightened. Yet in this, as in all things else, will be ever encountering difficulties, so long as the trade is divided thus into voyages, wherein every general good is either utterly crossed or neglected. Understand the condition of their present shipping, and will aim henceforth to furnish them with the vessels they require. Note the disposure of the Simon and Jude for Jambi, and the Falcoln for Japara, with the necessity of that factory's continuance; and are so fully persuaded of "their prevalency" with Mr. Hoare for his longer stay, so earnestly pressed by them by the James, that they pass over his request for licence of return for his country, and proceed to Mr. Willoughby's advices. He said Bantam affords little stores of rice and sugar, leaving them ignorant from whence to be furnished and the quantities procurable, let their next inform them that their supplies for Persia may be proportioned accordingly. He insists often on the beneficial trade of Sumatra, where it seems the Dutch have an ample trade, but whether by the King of Acheen's permission or at the charge of constant residences he advises not, however its trial by the Speedwell's enjoined coasting voyage will shortly ascertain them. A better gloss than he imports is set by this Dutch Commodore on their ill-thriving affairs at Taywan and in Japan, especially in the latter trade, which he pretends was fairly accommodated, though in respect of the monsoon their estate not yet returned. By the Hopewell from the coast, besides her own cargo, will be sent them the fag end of the Old Joint Stock's estate there, which goods must not be transported to the succeeding voyage if they may possibly be converted into spices before the fleets departure in April, but sent home on freight, their proportion of charges first deducted, for the Old Stock's own account. In his confused discourse of the Star's disposure for Jambi and Macassar, labouring to excuse his own miscarriage in the loss of that monsoon, Mr. Willoughby tells what benefit it would have been to the second and third voyages in procuring cheap cloves of the following harvest to be turned over from the former to the latter account, not rightly understanding their commission, where ordaining a borrowing there was appointed as well a repaying in goods of the same kind and quantity. Confess it is a promiscuous confusion, and such will be the condition of every voyage till contracted again into one, which jealousy in the Generality most powerfully opposeth. Their resolution of sending the Dove with the James will aptly suit both their occasions, by her return in Nov. next with southern investments to answer their requiries; only fear their greatest fail will be money, for their expected means by the Mary, &c. will not be so soon arrived as exhausted, and to engage themselves for a particular voyage beyond the extent of its own cavidall, were to assume the adventure on themselves. Much less then may they, at Bantam, expect relief in that kind for the Old Joint Stock, which will be sent by the Palsgrave and London. How the Hopewell is designed the copies of instructions sent them from the Cape will inform; but know not by what mistake the Armagon accounts are subjected to the approval of Bantam, the Company therein swerving from their last year's resolutions maturely debated. That it is most improper is easily manifest, for where they are subordinate reason would they should account, and the rather in respect of conveniency of trade, nearness, and, if need be, weekly advices, which Bantam can have but once a year, and has been a principal cause of the disorderly performances so much complained of by the Company. The premises considered resolve to dispense with that clause, till their opinions hereon receive answer out of England, and meantime expect conformity with the first letters received by the President. Thos. Robinson is by the Company appointed second at Macassar, and to be settled there with the first opportunity. Pray that the Company's recommendation of Mr. Reeve, likewise consigned to their disposure on the Hopewell, be duly regarded. Mr. Bix, at his earnest request, has licence to return for his country. The war with Deccan is at a pause, and a peace in treaty; the King still in Brampore, which, with the rains and bad government, is the cause of the highest extreme of scarcity, wheat and rice being risen to 2½ sere for a Mamoodee, butter a sere and ¼, a hen 4 or 5 Ma., and rare it is to see one [in margin, the prices of victuals, rice 12d. for 30 oz., butter 12d. for 1 lb., hen at 4s. and 5s.], and not a family here or at Baroach that has not been visited with agues, fevers, and pestilential diseases. Endorsed, "Recd 27th Jan. 1631(–2). Rd in London 4 September 1632 by the ship London." 11 pp. [O. C., Vol. XIII., No. 1374.]
Sept. 12.
Aboard the Great James (Bantam).
211. George Willoughby to the East India Company. Wrote at large from Masulipatam in the beginning of November, and in brief from Armagon last Jan., intending to have been large from Bantam by the first ship, but was large to the President and Council; cannot send copies because of "my present abridgment." 1st Feb. the Star departed from Armagon, and on her himself, Henry Sill, William Matthewe, Thomas Grove, Christopher Reade, and Thos. Tempest, Factors, and arrived at Bantam 27th March. Henry Sill's many misdemeanours on the coast, especially at Masulipatam and Pettapoli, who to enrich himself intended to have taken their junks, to the extermination of the Company's trade there, and his hindering the second general voyage's investment, constrained Willoughby to remove him and Christopher Reade, and to sequester his estate towards the Company's damages; therein attending the President's and Council's order, all which was effected by consultation. Transported the remains of the Second Joint Stock on the coast to the second general voyage, excepting the housing at Armagon, which was referred to the President; 4,414 ryals merchandize, military stores, and moveables, 1,996 ryals, for which he intended to have passed bills of exchange, to be paid by the adventurers of the second general voyage to those of the Second Joint Stock, at 7s. 6d. per R. for the former sum and 5s. for the latter, as per a clause from the President and Council; the desperate debts were not transported. On the second general voyage's account were few or no debts left, but all the Star's investments were laden on her, except some lead and alum left at Armagon and a small quantity of gold for that factory's charge. John Hunter, in regard of his former experience, was left chief at Armagon, Nicholas Bix second, and Ralph Cartwright third, the latter by order from Surat. Of English commodities by the Star only four pieces and two remnants of broadcloth were brought to Bantam, reds being most vendible at the coast. The Star was dispeeded for Jambi 7th April, with 27,000 ryals cargazoone of the second general voyage; whence she was long since expected, but the Falcon being too rotten to go to lade her, she has been forced to attend her lading by prowes, both dangerous and chargeable. The rest of the Star's cargazoone was intended in July for Macassar and Japara on the pinnace Dove, which being sent to the James with provisions is not yet returned. Found the pepper trade at Bantam near lost, through their former chief's neglect thereof the last three years, and helping the Dutch with provisions, contrary to the King's edict; one or two of whose Ministers being Chinas lost their heads. "I write not this to lay open others faults, but the truth." The neglect of the Bantam trade was in not buying up all the remainder of old pepper on their last return, which by report exceeded not 1,200 tons, which disheartened the cherishing of the pepper trees and ruined that trade, and caused the Javas to suspect the English as secret enemies, but the Company's former chiefs, as seems likely for furthering their own private trade, diverted their means to the coast, sending the Falcon and Dove with near 50,000 ryals, and thereon Henry Sill and Christopher Reade; whilst to have brought up the Bantam pepper had been of more profit, and animated the King and people to replant their pepper trees, who being hopeless of their pepper trade, for the Dutch buy not any there of purpose to ruin the trade, plant these two years rice to be provided against the Materan's wars. Thus Bantam does not now yield above 200 tons yearly, though in his letter to Surat was mentioned a greater quantity. Visited the young King on his arrival, to whom the father has delivered over the government to try his comportment therein, and intended in May to have visited the father with his Majesty's letter expected by the James; and the young King sent some of his principal nobles, Keaywansadipa, his tutor, and others several times to know to what purpose the English had removed to Bantam, being they did not trade as in former times; to whom his answer gave content, saying that it was the Company's desire to trade as formerly. Finding that 3,000 peculs of pepper were embarking to sell to the China junks at Batavia, he called a consultation for buying up all the pepper in Bantam, but perceiving that through the treacherous conduct of one Gittinge, a China, nominated by Mr. Hoare, who rules the rest, to have the only buying thereof, nothing was done in two months, he sent to the King to say that if he would forbid the export of pepper he would buy it all for part cloth and part money; which was done and he dealt for 1,000 peculs at 5¼ Rs. per pecul. But Mr. Hoare was much against the bargain, as against buying pepper in Bantam, so that if the Company intend the restoration of their Bantam trade they must send some one free from Surat's subjection, who will prefer their affairs before his own, without which they may have Bantam become a place of residence only, but no trade. Was on treaty last month to buy all the remainder of old pepper in Bantam, about 400 tons, and 7 tons cloves; which he intended to have laden on the James, and with the aforesaid 1,000 peculs and the Star's lading expected from Jambi (in the interim of whose arrival so much might have been borrowed of the Second Joint Stock) would have been 900 tons; but his displacing has ended those intendments and prejudiced the Company's affairs. Received on the coast in October from Surat copy of their letter sent on the Great James, with instructions to all the Factors on that coast, and in regard George Muschamp was in the Feb. before departed for England on the London, which the Star met near the Cape, that government of Bantam with its subordinate factories, of which the coast was one, was Willoughby's as Muschamp's successor, would accordingly have perfected their business there, but was hindered by Henry Sill, &c., who opened the Company's packet. Transcript of their letter and instructions by the Hopewell was sent hither by the Dutch from the Cape, whereby he understood of her voyage on account of the third general voyage and their sending the Palsgrave and London to fetch the remains of the Second Joint Stock, whereof is ready at Bantam 800 tons [of pepper] and 95 bahar cloves, and at Jambi 800 tons of pepper; with the former intended in Nov. next in company with the Star to have dispeeded the Palsgrave, and with the latter the London so soon as she should return from Jambi, which may be in Jan. The Star's cargazoone from the coast was calculated to produce 1,000 tons pepper and 80 tons cloves, the cloves to be procured next monsoon at Macassar; and the James' cargazoone may produce "acento profit" and provide 800 tons of pepper and 60 tons of cloves (for last year came no Surat goods into these parts, and therefore now the more in request); of all which, the James carrying 900 tons for Surat and the Star 350 tons for England, there will remain 600 tons and 140 tons cloves to be transported for England next year for the second general voyage, if not turned over to the third voyage. Has caused to be sent to the ships and factories the Company's instructions for the weights, measures, and marks of invoices to be entered in the journals of accounts of each factory, and for all Pursers to receive and deliver all lading by weight and measure. For this southern trade, as now limited by the President and Council's advice, 100,000 Rs. yearly would be sufficient quick-stock for providing 100 tons cloves and 1,300 tons pepper, viz., in Surat goods 36,000 Rs., and coast goods 36,000 Rs., producing 132,000 Rs., which with 28,000 Rs. amounts to 160,000 Rs.; whereof 200 bahar cloves at 270 Rs. is 54,000 Rs., and 1,300 tons pepper (being 13,000 picul) at 7s. per picul is 91,000 Rs., leaving 15,000 Rs. for factory and ship charges. This trade will require at least two ships of 400 tons, of such draught that they may pass over the bar of Jambi laden, one of which, besides going to Jambi, may yearly make a voyage to the west coast of Sumatra, where if they leave Jambi, which place is both chargeable and, now by the death of the King, dangerous, they must in future provide the greatest part of their pepper, if Bantam trade be not bettered. One ship of 200 tons to follow the trade at Macassar, of reasonable strength to oppose the Portugals there; and one pinnace of 100 tons to send to Jambi, Japara, or Macassar on occasion; one of which two vessels may be yearly sent in June to Surat with pepper and sugar for Persia, which will yield good profit, and returned thence in November or sooner with Surat goods, by which means pepper and cloves may be timely provided for transport to Surat, if as this year required, against May, or to England in November following. And in place of the ship necessarily sent yearly from England to the coast, and thence to be dispeeded for Bantam in Sept. with those goods, one of the pre-mentioned may yearly be returned for England, whereby the excessive charge of trimming the ships in these parts may be avoided. Intended this year to have gone to Macassar to settle the trade, turn those streams that carry away the cloves to private uses, and if possible by some agreement with that King put the Danes and free Dutchmen from using that port, that the Company might have all the cloves annually brought there; to which Messrs. Hoare, Sill, and Vernworthy said they would not consent. Is informed that Henry Sill, Chr. Reade, and others carried great store of private trade to the coast, not only for English but also Dutch, amounting to 40,000 Rs., whereof one Vesterman, a Dutchman, sent by Henry Sill China silk and gold amounting to 4,000 Rs. Sill made a contract with Vaga Chetty, Governor of Armagon, the chief merchant, and others, for coasting voyages to Gingelly, Pegu, Racan, and Tenasserim, whereto three junks were to be bought at Gingelly, whither Sill had sent for his particular 1,000 Rs. in money and 3,600 Rs. in gold. His behaviour was very haughty to the Governor and Chiefs at Masulipatam, where on suspicion of theft he tortured to death, by the Amboyna torture of water, a freeman, notwithstanding the entreaties of Willoughby, the Governor, and others. The Governor entreated in policy when he might have commanded, to give him cause of advantage, and the Company's estate was seized till the matter had proceeded to judgment; which would have lost them the monsoon, besides a fine, as they were advised, of not less than 10,000 Rs. in regard of the quality of the offender, but with the assistance of many well-wishers of the English, especially Meirquimaldin, he took up and ended the matter for 200 pagodas distributed to the petty officers of justice, and a letter the Governor had dispatched with news thereof to the King was recalled, and another sent relating that the deceased had poisoned himself. In the time of Mr. Duke when chief of Masulipatam for such like business one of the Factors in Masulipatam was carried prisoner to Hyderabad, and a fine put on him after a month's imprisonment, how much more would have been put on Henry Sill who was chief and came thither in great pomp; a former Governor of the Dutch was also cruelly handled there for such another business. Sill many times said that if the ship Star had not been on the coast he would take all their junks, for what cause more than to enrich himself knows not, and to extirpate the Company from that trade, the only places for providing the white cloth in these south factories most requested. As Sill had almost broken the peace at Masulipatam so he endeavoured at Pettapoli, by proffering forceable detention of 100 pagodas due to that Governor in lieu of a debt which the Governor had seemed to pass his word for, in spite of Willoughby's persuasions; by which act the second general voyage's cloth then whiting in the washer's hands was seized and they beaten. Sill forced with shame to the English nation to pay the money before he could depart thence, and the Star kept near a month longer, and like to have lost her voyage to Bantam. Sill formerly in many passages hindered the Star's investment, especially at Viraacheron, where he covertly bought out of the hands of the Factors, John Hunter and Thomas Grove, what they had agreed for, causing them to stay there near a month to provide those sorts again; which hindrances caused the second general voyage to lose the Macassar cloves by her late departure, because the winds had turned a month when they arrived at Bantam. Was in no kind acquainted with any of the Second Joint Stock's affairs till he had removed Sill, so that the Falcon for want of six days' enlargement in her commission returned from Gingelly with little or no lading as Richard Langham can inform. When in October last the President and Council sent to Masulipatam the Company's letter sent on the James to the Agent and Council at Bantam, Sill would not suffer Willoughby to order any of the business of the Second Joint Stock, alleging that he (Sill) was chief for that stock, notwithstanding also the President's letter ordering Willoughby to perfect the same; whereupon it was put to a consultation of all the Factors and officers then in Masulipatam. Sill and himself as "supposed parties" were exempted, the rest being Lawrence Henley, John Hunter, Wm. Mathewe, Christopher Reade, John Carter, Pilot of the Falcon, and Benj. Owen, Purser, and Philip Bearden, Purser of the Star, and Laurence Henley, Christopher Reade, John Carter, and Benjamin Owen, the major part (it seems for private trade sake) confirmed the opinion and power of Henry Sill over the Second Joint Stock, but would not assign to the consultation or their own opinions; by which disobedience of the Company's and President's orders Willoughby's intent of ordering the general affairs was wholly frustrate, for a timely supply by the Star or Falcon to Macassar and Jambi would have been no less beneficial to both stock and voyage; for the timely lading of the Great James for Surat and Star in seasonable time for England. For the pinnace Dove departed the coast Sept. before was appointed for Jambi but going through the Straits of Sunda as doubting the Portugal forces of Malacca, and so touching at Bantam, was contrary to expectation sent to Macassar with Ant. Vernworthy and Malachi Martin, and procured 95 babarr of cloves out of 400 that arrived. The case of pattollaes sent forth on the Star being both rich, and then by scarcity much requested at Macassar and Jambi, they were sent to Bantam on the Dove, and by Ant. Vernworthy's relation if sent to Macassar would have yielded a double cent profit and procured 10 tons of cloves; but Mr. Hoare neither sent nor sold them, being unwilling, as he said, to mix the voyages and Second Joint Stock's goods; by which and other proceedings it is apparent that the second general voyage was disrespected and also at Bantam; the pattollaes were afterwards sent to Jambi. Messrs. Hoare, Vernworthy, Sill, &c. are very unwilling the Second Joint Stock should cease, saying that if the first, second, and third voyages fail of expectation then the Second Joint Stock will revive again. Of the returns of the great private trade sent to the coast one man sent 15 bales to Jambi, besides to other places which were consumed by fire with many of the Company's, of which it seems the second voyage has one-seventh part, but all particulars were omitted in the Factor's letter; but has required each particular, and by the first ship intended to have sent one of the Council to examine that business; but knows not what the new agent will do in this or other businesses. Supposes Sill hindered the Star's investments at the coast as knowing that towards the end of the monsoon she must with what was ready depart for Bantam, of purpose to make use of those remaining for his contracted private trade for a year or two, being that coast and English goods are in very good request at Pegu, Recan (Arracan), and Tenasserim. For all which causes Sill was by consultation removed from Armagon to Bantam, and his estate sequestered to the Company's use, and inventory taken where only appeared 100 odd Rs. in plate, and his said adventure to Gingelly, which the Governor, his partner, promised to see delivered to Jno. Hunter; his apparel also was sequestered, attending the President's order expected in May. Many plots and mad proceedings were practised by Sill, Reade, Ralph Cartwright, and Thos. Tempest to re-establish Sill, and protest were delivered to Willoughby, Jno. Barnes, Master of the Star, and Osmond Smith, Lieutenant, by Ralph Cartwright, whose uncivil and mutinous proceedings deserved punishment. The manner of Sill's remove from Armagon was as follows: it having been concluded by consultation of the Star's Factors alone to remove Sill, Willoughby, Jno. Barnes, Wm. Mathewe, and 10 of the Star's company landed betime in the morning without any arms except sword or rapier as was fit and usual, went into the fort and up to the house leaving half their men below, in regard Sill's seconds were rash young men who seemed to much depend on him. After friendly salutations Willoughby acquainted him that affairs required his remove, and called a general consultation at which were John Barnes, John Hunter, Nicholas Bix, Wm. Mathewe, Ralph Cartwright, Thos. Grove, Thos. Tempest, Osmond Smith, Philip Bearden, Edward Hall, and Robt. Wade, but Henry Sill and Christopher Reade his second were kept in their chambers for quietness sake, and having seen by the Company's letter that they had appointed Willoughby to succeed Geo. Muschamp acknowledged Willoughby to be Commander over the Company's affairs there; after which removed Sill to the Star, where he had all the freedom the ship could afford, and was accommodated in the Round House. Sill's malicious practises extended to Bantam, for he made means to withstand Willoughby's acceptance there, and on news of Mr. Skibbowe's coming directed a writing to all the Factors and officials requiring them to question Willoughby for his proceedings against him, which properly belongs to the Company and none other except the President. Willoughby's departure from Masulipatam Pettapoli, and Armagon was in very friendly manner, the chiefs used him courteously and much desired his return as the Company's continued resident there. If the private trade planted by Henry Sill on the coast had not been rooted up in its infancy by Willoughby, it would have spread as the Surat contract has done, even overspreading the Company's profit; for which Willoughby and as many of his Council as were for removing Sill or acknowledging Willoughby chief on the coast are displaced and disgraced, whither Mr. Norris is sent to be chief. William Mathewe, who was intended for Macassar, goes on this ship for Surat, and it is reported that John Barnes, Master of the Star, and his chief mate are sent for. But himself endures the greatest misery, for coming aboard the 24th Aug. to welcome Mr. Skibbowe, was next morning arrested on a warrant from President Rastell and Council, commanding him to submit to the disposure of Messrs. Skibbowe and Banggam, and take passage in that ship for Surat; whereon his keys were taken, and all his accounts and writings seized, without suffering him orderly to deliver over the Company's estate, wherefore desires the Company will for their own satisfaction detain the estates of Messrs. Skibbowe and Hoare and the rest of the Council. The contractors to blot Willoughby's best actions would fain make him faulty to the adventurers of the Second Joint Stock, as leaning more to the second general voyage, saying that he recovered all the debts of the voyage in Armagon, but left those of the said Second Joint Stock still owing, to which Willoughby answers that both were alike to him, and that the 2,000 pagodas debt of the Second Joint Stock was for rotten sandal wood, sold by Lawrence Henley, for which the merchants promised to pay in goods by ult. Feb., but the goods the merchants brought in were, they said, for the gold and goods received from Willoughby. Has been constrained to keep the accounts of the Second Joint Stock since the 20th July, as well as those of the second general voyage, being Mr. Hoare desired respite until his departure for England, Anthony Vernworthy the Company required home, Lawrence Henley would also go home, intended to have sent Henry Sill home, and William Mathewe was appointed for Macassar, and Gerald Pinson, Purser of the factory and assistant to Christopher Reade, who for want of others was warehouse keeper and petty cashier. Kept the accounts at the coast, John Hunter being necessarily employed, with Wm. Mathewe and Thos. Grove, on buying cloth in the country near Masulipatam, being Mr. Duke was deceased. Left the Company's business in Bantam with all accounts and writings perfect, in double copies, having neither disbursed any of their moneys nor sold any of their goods, as being neither petty cashier nor warehouse keeper, and therefore no part of their estate can be wanting wherein he has recovered many more debts than he made, of which not any desperate. Christopher Reade, Ralph Cartwright, and Thomas Tempest would not assist the Factors of the Star in the settlement of affairs at Armagon, but were so troublesome by their cavillings and denial to give any opinion, seeming distracted by the disjointing of their private trade, that they were by consultation exempted that they might not hinder the well settling of the Company's affairs. Sill was supposed to be very rich, but no estate of his being found at Armagon; Reade, who had the keeping thereof when Sill was sick at Masulipatam, was required to declare the same, and affirmed that he knew of no more of Sill's estate than his adventure to Gingelly and some plate, and that, with his apparel valued at 1,500 Rs., he could not on his arrival at the coast make account of 7,000 Rs., whereof 1,500 Rs. he had spent there, having always been a great spender. The Company will find that Sill when principal at Jambi very much prejudiced them by incurring many desperate debts and by defeating the Company of three years' custom there, which the King at first granted towards the charge of three ships sent by President Hawley and Council to help the King against Palembang, in which Sill joined with the Dutch, as informed by that King's favourite and interpreter, thereby to continue their own yearly benefit of stealing the greatest part of the custom; whereby Sill has gained the greatest part of his always melting estate without trouble, being only out of the Company's chests of ryals, and lavishly spending the same; by his liberality has gained the good respect of the common people, who think him exceeding rich, as by his profitable sales of the contractors' goods he has caused the well wishes of the principals of these parts and Surat to be tied to him. Is thus large about Sill's estate because in a protest at Armagon he taxes Willoughby and Council of felony, alleging that he had in a chest under his apparel diamonds in a white ivory box, which he wanteth; but those that perused his estate found no such thing, and 1,500 Rs. spent, 3,600 Rs. sent to Gingelly, and 1,500 Rs., at which he values his apparel, make between 6,000 and 7,000 Rs., said by Reade to be all the estate he brought to that coast. His own sufferings imposed by these private traders are great. Is pinned up in a close cabin between decks because he shall neither see nor hear of the great private trade this ship brings, the new Bantam agent feigning Willoughby would run away; may not take the air on the deck, but only at night, and there are watchmen to keep him from conference with Java, Chinee, English, or Dutch, several of whom Capt. Morton, adding to his cruel usage, have beaten or threatened because he says they suffer Willoughby to speak with any. The names of his keepers. May wonder at the cause but for his integrity in the Company's service, having but done his duty, which, if the Almighty lends him life to come to them, he will make apparent. Departed his country on three days' notice, and his whole endeavour has been to do the Company service, having neither wife nor child and no kindred on his charge, but only himself and reputation to maintain; nor did he bring any kinsmen whose preferment might anyway wrong his integrity, nor estate to drive private trade. Does not so much grieve for his own imprisonment, present indignities, and wound to his reputation as for the deep wound the Company's affairs will receive by the "disaninvation" of their true servants and encouragement of those who only endeavour their own advantage. Which act by any other than the President would have done less harm, but understands this violent proceeding is only because the President has taken Willoughby's removal of Sill as a notable disparagement to his greatness, which, report says, he will extremely punish. By which cruel proceedings the contractors have as much feared all from giving even intelligence of their actions as the Dutch by murdering the Company's servants at Amboyna have fastened those people and trade to themselves; but still trusts the Company will redeem his own dearly loved reputation, assuring them that only his true service has brought this misery on him. Desires a favourable construction may be made of his letters to the Company and the President from Masulipatam and Armagon, being then very sick of a fever. Has written with as much indisposition of body, caused by his strict usage, as grief of mind, yet free from having inserted anything from envy; is disabled by being seized from sending the consultations and other needful proofs, but hopes they will come to the Company's perusal. Heartily wishes the Dutch may never reap that which the Company with so much cost and pains have sowed. Endorsed, "George Willoughby prisoner aboard the Great James at Bantam bound for Surat 12 Septemb. 1631. Recd by the Palsgrave 1 July 1632." 20½ pp. [O. C., Vol. XIII., No. 1375.]
Sept. 23.
212. Henry Sill and Christopher Reade to John Skibbowe, William Hoare, and the Council in Bantam. Whereas they stand charged with certain accusations by George Willoughby, John Hunter, Wm. Mathew and Thos. Grove in their letters to the East India Company and to President Rastell and Council in Surat, request they will convent before them all persons belonging to the Falcon and Dove during their employ for the coast of Coromandel, or any other the Company's servant's there, and examine them on the 30 interrogatories following. Endorsed, "Answered le pr. October 1631." Annexed,
212. I. Examination of Lawrence Henley, Nicholas Norber, Jno. Carter, Tho. Fletcher, James Birkdall, Rich. Harrison, and Benjamin Owen on above-mentioned interrogatories, in behalf of the East India Company and for their own discharge of George Willoughby's false accusations both for England and Surat from coast Coromandel. (1.) The Second Joint Stock's house in Masulipatam was able to contain both stock and voyage, and for want of people goods were stolen out of it. (2.) Carter and Henley received order from Armagon to provide a house apart in Masulipatam for the second general voyage. (3.) Hunter would have hired the Governor's house at Armagon. (4.) Know of no private trade that Sill or Reade carried for the coast; (5.) but Henley knows of two bales sent from the coast sent on the Dove by Sill, but no more. (6.) The six bales of Sallampores were bought for the Company. (7.) Henley received certain sums of money at Pettapoli from Sill to be invested for the Company. (8.) The second general voyage had embaled at Pettapoli by the 18th Nov. 1630, 14 bales and no more. (9.) Sill's demeanour to the Governor of Pettapoli was no prejudice to the Company or detention of the Falcon. (10.) The detention of money and washers might have been but was not prejudicial, though the Second Joint Stock lost 100 pagodas. (11.) Pettapoli is acknowledged by all seamen to be a better road than Masulipatam in November and December. (12.) Sill and Reade never to their knowledge had any private trade or dealing with the Dutch. (13.) The two leagers of silk belonging to Sir Vesterman were licenced by the President and Council for transport to Masulipatam. (14.) Willoughby licenced the two Danes Factors with four bales to take passage for Bantam on the Falcon. (15.) Sill neither used nor intended any violence towards the junks on the coast. (16.) The English formerly at Masulipatam have inflicted corporal punishment upon native servants, but how warrantable they know not. (17.) The porter of the Company's house there, if faulty of what accused, deserved punishment. (18.) None of the examined were present at his punishment, but it is generally conceived not to have been done with any intent of his death. (19.) His death was no hindrance or charge to the Company. (20.) None of the examined ever heard of any intent to bury him in the English yard. (21.) Sill and Reade delivered to Willoughby in October several lists of good befitting the several factories. (22.) Henley also delivered a list of English commodities which might yearly vend in Masulipatam and Armagon. (23.) Henley and Reade delivered an abstract of the Second Joint Stock's estate on that coast. (24.) The general letter for Surat, in answer to the President's of 29th Sept. 1630, written by Henley in Sill's sickness, was finished in October. (25.) Sill sent several times in Oct. and Nov. to Willoughby and Henley and Reade to know whether Willoughby's writings for Surat were finished, whose answer was not yet. (26.) That Willoughby said he would not endanger his health for the Company's estate. (27.) Willoughby did not, to any man's knowledge, acquaint Sill with his dispeed for Surat of the 2nd Nov. (28.) Sill detained Henley a week from his employment at Pettapoli only to subscribe Willoughby's letters for England and Surat. (29.) Willoughby always seemed invective to the Second Joint Stock's estate on the coast, many times saying it had been better drowned in the sea than their remaining. (30.) He also reported that the adventures of the second general voyage had rather it should perish than their voyage should not prosper. Examined and firmed in the presence of us the Agent and Council at Bantam, John Skibbowe, Will. Hoare, Ant. Vernworthy, and John Banggam. Bantam, 1631, Oct. 1. Together, 10 pp. [O. C., Vol. XIII., Nos. 1376 and 1381.]
Sept. 24.
Bantam Road.
Aboard the Great James.
213. Declaration signed by George Willoughby, John Barnes, Master of the Star, and seven others, of the manner in which Henry Sill was removed from the fort in Armagon on board the ship Star, similar to the account in Willoughby's letter of 12th Sept. [see ante, No. 211] that he had the freedom of the ship, and was not restrained from public or private conference with any person, or from receiving, writing, and delivering letters at any time. Endorsed, "Re 1° July 1632." 2 pp. [O. C., Vol. XIII., No. 1377.]
Sept. 26.
214. Ed. Heynes and Wm. Gibson to the East India Company. Send transcripts of their last of 17th March, with invoices, bills of lading, and other advices sent on the Discovery and Reformation towards England in company with the James, William, Blessing, and Pinnace. Received 25th April at Shiraz on their way to Spahan the Company's first and second letters of 14th and 18th June 1630, by way of Smyrna and Aleppo, and a third copy at Spahan 26th May. Answer as follows: Their formers as well as Mr. Burt's, showed their endeavours to find out the cause and reform the abuse of want in weight of silk; but being "parrontarylie" denied silk by the King's Treasurer if they would not receive it from the King's scale as all other men did, Mr. Burt procured the Vizier of Spahan to be joined with Mullaymbeage, with a firman to both for right dealing; hope they will find that abuse reformed in the 790 bales sent on these two ships. If they will make trial by the weight of 210 Rs. of 8, how many lbs. English it makes, which is the weight of a maundshawe by Mr. Burt's affirmation, peradventure they may find a want of 12½ lb. which they have ever accounted to be the maundshawe of this place, and so the error will appear. Their respects so worthily given would have been a great comfort to Agent Burt had he lived to enjoy it, and to themselves it is a great encouragement that their Worships will censure all unjust detractors, who merit the Company's high displeasure. Mr. Rastell succeeding as President at Surat will be no small comfort to them, whose worth cannot be paralysed by the returned. Take notice of the Company's intention to dispeed them by the next fleet the like cavidal of goods and treasure for a third voyage as they did on the James's fleet. They shall not have cause to doubt of the security of their estate in these parts; if this King should break contract which they have been very fearful of, the worst that could happen would be but forbearance a year or two. Such a cargazoon of cloth and tin cannot be vended in many years, if the King leave them, especially as the like commodities are supplied from Turkey and Russia by Armenian and Aleppo Merchants at the like price. Their advices overland may peradventure give the more encouragement than at present they should wish; but to direct the fleet to make Persia their first port in such a season as August or September is a project delivered by one ignorant of the country. Gombroon in that season of heats is unpeopled, Governor, Shabandar, and Merchants all fled in fear of contagion, save poor fishermen; camels not to be procured on any terms, nor water nor feeding found for man or beast; of the Company's servants attending at port not one in 10 escapes with life; last year the two English and one Dutch left till June all died, and another Englishman journeying up, viz., Loftus, Baker, and Saddock; this year John Antill, Bard (?), and Mills are all dead, and at least 40 Merchants, Moors, and Armenians that stayed but till the end of April for want of camels to transport their goods; the Portugal lies at advantage with 20 frigates to burn the Company's house and goods when the fleet is departed and the town unpeopled; the silk is not received in Spahan till November and is 40 days at least in transport to Port, so that the ships may not find it at Gombroon before January. Have persuaded the President at Surat to divert the expected fleet out of England by advice on the fleet appointed to meet them at the islands, and have themselves advised them of the danger and their unpreparedness till January by the pinnace; yet lest they should fail of meeting, they have left two young men and sent two others down with 300 bales of silk to Port to meet them, who but for the necessity would have rather refused the Company's service than be exposed to such apparent danger. By command of great persons they got camels to transport these bales to Lar, 10 days' journey short of Gombroon, but further they and the Company's servants will not go until they hear of the ship's arrival. It is a vain hope to procure silk from the King's ministers timely to meet the ships at all seasons; it is gathered in Ghilan in July and August, arrives at Spahan in October and November, where a month is spent before its delivery to them, and it is half January past before it can arrive at Port in case it meet with no impediments, which are not usually wanting in a transportation of 700 miles between Spahan and Gombroon. These travels are no delightful employment, and the more when twice a year they be undertaken in the heats up and rain and snow down. What duty obliges and their bodies may enable, the Company may command; impossibilities, if required, answer themselves; the conclusion may be the Company's loss of able servants to give accounts of their affairs, and the loss of their lives, of which nature teaches the best preservation. Such as have induced their Worships to think it possible that silk can be brought down and merchants induced to repair to Port in August want both experience and judgment; it is their integrity which makes them thus plain, assuredly they shall be found faithful and industrious in the Company's service without gilding or obsequious compliments. Have not been wanting by all occasions to give timely advice of their proceedings by Aleppo. The present wars and troubles might be some impediment, yet understand that Mr. Burt's packet arrived with Consul Wanderford 1st Feb. last, and their own with Consul Potton some few days before his embarking for England. Hear not of a third copy sent by the Julfayleys; hope they will arrive timely. Trusty express messengers will not go with letters to Aleppo for 30, 40, or 50 Rs.; this conveyance could not be procured under 6 tomds., the letters to be delivered to the Consul in 50 days on forfeiture of one half; another may be expected in a few days by reason of some passages with the King not yet concluded. Mr. Burt's last letter will give some reason of the great quantity of silks arriving in Turkey and Russia above former years. The opinion held in Christendom that all the silk made in Ghilan, Mazanderan, Shirwan, and other places in Persia belongs to the King is altogether erroneous. The Emperor Shah Abbas prohibited all men of what nation soever to buy any silks unless from his own hands, and sent his servants with ready money to all places where silks grew to buy them from the country people; with this silk he "complied" yearly with the English and Dutch, sold part to the Jullfaleyne Armenians at 10 tomds. the load profit, which was transported by way of Aleppo, adventured some with them on his own account, and hoarded up the rest in his magazines, doubting silk might fail in some years. In this matter it continued until the last year of his reign, when one Moora, a renegade Prince of Georgia, whom the Shah had made general of a great army to conquer his brother's kingdom Georgiastone, revolted to his brother, treacherously slew 8 or 10 chous or dukes, and seized all the Shah's store of silks, being near 3,000 bales, and accidentally burnt as much more, the whole store of the Emperor, which silks were divided amongst his soldiers, and by them sold at mean rates and transported to Aleppo, Russia, Smyrna, &c., which is the cause of such a glut and cheap silks in Christendom. The Emperor's successor, being taken young out of prison, ignorant of his grandfather's provident courses, gave license to buy silks in all parts of his kingdom without restriction, which brought him into want, and now he seeks fairly to break off his contract with us and the Dutch till he can better accomplish it, silk being not to be bought this year by his ministers but at dearer rates than he is to deliver it to them; and the faction of the Jullfaleyn Armenians, and other merchants who have their trade to Aleppo, by extreme bribes to his dukes, nobles, and ministers prevent the King's prohibiting the buying of silk as his grandfather did, regarding more their particular profit than their King's house and the benefit of their commonweal. Beg leave now to relate the occurrents of the Company's business from the ships' departure, with their many disputes with the Emperor and his nobles to continue the trade, and how at present affairs stand. It was the fine of May last before they arrived with all their goods and treasure at Spahan, except 1,000 chests of tin, which for want of carriage they were forced to leave at Gombroon till next year, and omitted no opportunity in solicitation of Mullaymbeage and the Vizier of Spahan, upon whom their business was conferred, by the King's firmans, to receive their goods and moneys, and deliver them silks according to the contract procured by Mr. Burt last year [see ante, No. 79], to which was replied they had dispeeded messengers to the Emperor, giving him to understand of their arrival, and waited his further pleasure, being blamed last year for their forwardness. Supposing this to be a delay to draw from us the annual bribes, presented the Company's letter to Mullaymbeage, with a diamond ring and other things to the value of 44 tomds., likewise presented the Vizier, all which was received with many comfortable promises, but produced no effects; therefore sent their linguist and other servants to the King in complaint of this neglect, and prepared themselves to follow, but heard to their great comfort of the King's certain resolution to come to Spahan. The King arrived the 22nd June, met him a league out of town, "who then took notice of us"; and two days after he sent for us to a banquet prepared for all Ambassadors and strangers of note to eat and drink in his presence. Gave the King notice they had a letter and a present from his Majesty, but he wished us to expect a fitter time for that purpose, this being a time of mirth unfit for such ceremonies. Were sent for on 1st July to Court, and presented with all due ceremony his Majesty's letter, accompanied with a present of 60 tomds, which was received with much majesty and content, and ourselves with favourable acceptance. At that time moved for confirmation of last year's contract, but were answered by the Emperor himself, that by wants of silks this year by reason of the mortality of worms in Ghilan and Shirwan he was not able to perform it, and that silks by scarcity were not to be bought but at dearer rates than he had contracted with them; that our broadcloth was so coarse and bad conditioned that his people refused to receive it for their pay as was usual; that by reason of the quantity of tin remaining on his hands with what arrived from other parts the price in the bazaar was 10 or 15 shahees the maund better cheap than he received from them; and that unless they abated the price of their goods and advanced the price of his silks to 45 tomds. the load Ghilan, and 50 tomds. the load Shirwan, he could not hold commerce with them, but if they would carry their goods and money to Ghilan, Shirwan, and Mazanderan, and there sell their goods and buy silks as other merchants, they should have his protection and more liberties and freedoms granted than his own subjects, which would be more beneficial to them and free him from an unavoidable loss. Many of his dukes and nobles sided with him. Replied punctually to his proposition, but mainly insisted upon his contract, confirmed by his letter to his Majesty, which had induced the Company at great charge to direct these cavidals of goods and money within these two years to comply with him; that it could not but appear some dishonour to his Highness now to break with them; notwithstanding if it should be his pleasure hereafter not to hold commerce with them, yet he would comply with them for the goods already come and this year to come, and then give them his license to depart the country under writing to his Majesty in testimony that it was his pleasure and not by any misdemeanour of theirs. This appeared somewhat reasonable to them, but were dismissed his presence without comfort or hope of a good issue, when the Julfaylene Armenians and other merchants that yearly traded for silk to Aleppo had the greatest part of the nobles in faction with them to oppose strongly our proceedings. It would be tedious to relate all their disputes singly with the great persons about the King in at least six weeks, and their particular bribes to procure another day of audience, which at last brought forth this issue: Applied to the Duke of Shiraz, who was in the mountains with his army seven days from Spahan, as their best friend and last hope to reconcile this difference, who being more zealous of the Emperor's honour than the rest of the dukes in Court, wrote to his Majesty and to the nobles in their behalf, which caused them again to be sent for to the King, and the business was referred to be concluded between them and Cortha Bashaw, the Emperor's father-in-law, and his High Chancellor Ettomon Dowlett, and what they concluded the King would ratify. After much time spent, obtained a day of hearing by means of the Duke's Vizier, Coja Cossom, whom he appointed their solicitor, and after many disputes were brought to this strait, either to leave commerce with the King with all their goods on their hands, which could not be vended in many years, or else content themselves to deliver their broadcloth at 33 sha. the covitt, kersies at 16 sha., and tin at 56 sha. the maund shaw, to the amount of 32,000 tomans, whereof 10,600 to be in ready money, to be paid in two years, for satisfaction whereof they are to receive clear of all charges with allowance of ¾ md. per load in Spahan, 250 loads next year, 250 the second year, and 300 the third year, at the rate of 40 tomans the Ghilan and 43 the Shirwan silk per load; to this they consented as of two evils the least, and in regard the ready money is advanced 2,600 tomans. The King has granted his firman for such quantities of silks as shall clear all former accounts betwixt them, which may amount to 7,000 tomans, and will produce 250 bales, which, with the 300 already sent to Port, the Company may expect laden on the next returning ships, besides what they shall advance at Port with ready money. Have received this contract enclosed under seal of the Emperor and his principal nobles, which will assuredly be performed without further delays; hope bribes and extreme charges in travelling to Court in annual confirmation of contracts, as in former times, will be now avoided. The Emperor promises in a few days an answer to his Majesty's letter [see No. 222 I.], and will certify the reason of this new contract and the breach of the old, and the better to perform with us he has, though to his loss as he pretends, prohibited all transport of silks by way of Turkey, and not any man to buy a bale but from his hands, making Spahan his mart and Gombroon his port for all silks in his empire; and will offer propositions for a further contract when this of three years is expired, which if the Company like not they may fairly leave him. When they have delivered the contracted proportion of goods to the King, will have remaining of the cavidal sent upon the James 295 broadcloths, 1,000 chests of tin, and 100 pieces of kersies, and the like they suppose next year, too great a quantity, unless they procure the King to take it, as they hope to do, to be vended in many years, for last year they could not vend above 60 cloths in Shiraz and 30 in Spahan, and not a chest of tin. The reason is the poverty of the soldiers, who receive their pay in broadcloth at 42 sha. the covett, and tin at 70 sha. the maundshawe, and are forced to sell them at 24 and 40, by which means the bazaars are overcharged with quantities of those mean prices. Would therefore wish the Company to be sparing in supplies till they give further encouragement, which they hope will be before the expiration of the new contract, for the trade by way of Turkey being prohibited, the King's necessities will be such that he will be glad to accept of theirs on any reasonable terms; meantime the Company may yearly supply 500 broadcloths, 100 kersies, and 20,000l. sterling, which, if the King leave them, may be put off for silk better cheap than they have it from the King, for it is not to be doubted that silks will be cheaper and more plentiful when none are to be transported but by themselves and the Dutch, especially if the Russian trade for silks proceed not, which is now in agitation with the Emperor. Hope their diverting the streams of silk from Turkey will not be displeasing to their Worships; have had strong opposition therein from the Armenians Jullfalayns, and others, and it may be taken ill by some who are not of the Company. The Dutch by their bad carriage are absolutely denied further contract with the Emperor; their former principal Visneck fled these parts pretending for Holland, and left his accounts unfinished or cleared with Mullaymbeage, by whose conveyance he made his escape; his successor finds the Emperor indebted to them 12,000 tomans, which he cannot clear by the loss of one half; they may receive this year 300 or 400 bales of silk, and then to expect no further trade with the King; and are now fallen on contract with the Armenians to receive silks at Gombroon at 50 tomans the load in half money, half broadcloth, and India commodities. The continuance of this is doubtful, but there is great probability to find silks at Port both plenty and cheap, and if the Company enable them with an overplus of ready money and India commodities, doubt not to advance their returns to greater benefit than by the Company's contract with this Emperor. This has always been their opinions as formerly advised. Pray them to forbear sending any more tin as yet, or any perpetuanys at all, and let their broadcloth be better in goodness than this last sent, which is worse by much than that sent by the Charles; never saw coarser. Cannot but doubt the Company are falsely dealt with by the clothworkers by trusting them without examining the goodness of their cloths, or else they are exchanged by them in dressing; find many cloths that never cost 5l. the pack white, rated in the invoice at 10l. and 11l., and conceive their Worships would not invest their money on such base cloth to supply this factory, especially when its goodness is the main continuance of this commerce. It is generally complained of, and that of the Dutch deservedly preferred. This year the Company will receive much damage for having not as yet delivered to the King above 300 cloths, and 50 of them returned stained and rotten clean through, and in some bales the middle cloth only rotten and stained. Conceive it is the clothworkers fault by bad dyeing and dressing, and not damage in the ship altogether. If the Company send not better it will be left on their hands; Mullaymbeage in his letter has somewhat touched on that point; receive many bitter curses from the poor soldiers as they pass the streets, who are forced to take their bad cloth for payment of their long service. Maps, globes, and mastiffs are not esteemed by these people, nor presents acceptable either by King or nobles; for such purposes scarlet, purple, and violet cloth, rich satins, best colours, rich cloth of gold and silver, "fair knives," curious jewels set with emeralds and rubies in gold as "carkanetts," bracelets, are fit for these great persons, and four or five chests of principal strong waters, in place of ready moneys they are forced to disburse, without which the trade cannot proceed or ourselves pass injuries, as in the time of the old King, Shah Abbas, notwithstanding they have this King's firman in confirmation of their former privileges, for every Chan or Duke about the King expects yearly bribes, and so base they are that they will return with contempt any present if in value not to their liking, and will cross any business depending on their favour. This year some crossed their proceedings by whom presents to the value of 40 or 50 tomans had been scornfully returned and their business stopped till they had advanced their presents. This is a custom amongst themselves. The Dutch and Armenians are more sensible, and have bribed this year 1,000 tomans apiece, the Dutch to procure their own, and cannot obtain it with the loss of one half, and the Armenians to oppose the English trade with the King, and prevail not. If their Worships mean to continue this trade by a further contract after this is expired, they must set apart at least 500 tomans to procure it, and near as much yearly to maintain it. The charge of transport of goods to and from Port is not less than 1,000 tomans a year; housekeeping, with the charge of 40 horses at least, with servants' wages, not less than 30 tomans a month with their best husbandry; towards which they may happily receive some years 1,000 tomans for custom, and some, as this last, not above 500; so that if, notwithstanding these disbursements, their Worships will proceed in this trade, dare presume to promise a procurement upon the present if not upon better terms. The transport of silks from Ghilan to Spahan has by the Emperor's command been charged to their account at least to the amount of 2,000 tomans, but with much trouble freed themselves of that charge, and are now in dispute for tare, which by the old King's firmand was one maund on a load, but now but ¾. Are in some hope to procure one maund again, to make some amend for the loss of weight in the silk, notwithstanding many of the King's ministers strongly oppose them. The delivery of silk and receipt of their ready moneys is conferred upon Mirza Tuckie, Governor of Ghilan, and their goods on Mullaymbeage; would be glad both might be settled on him as formerly. Have found him many degrees better affected to them than to others or the Vizier of Spahan. The best of them is bad enough, perfidious and deceitful; they are Persians, and better fruit cannot be expected from them towards Christians. By much "opertunity" have at last brought Mullaymbeage to pass account with them, who for Mr. Burt's two first years makes him debtor 883 tomans, as by the enclosed translation of his account witnessed by the Dutch and Venetians will appear. Mullaymbeage affirms he never cleared account with Mr. Burt all this time, nor have they any writing of Burt to disprove any particular, but he shows Burt's acknowledgment for 228 tomans owing, and also that of Mr. Loftus for 21 tomans; Wooder makes Mullaymbeage indebted in the third year's account 63 tomans for money disbursed for him, but mentions no particulars, which Mullaymbeage requires, denying any such matter, so that he cuts them off from their due, owing by the King 967 tomans in all, which must be satisfied out of each man's estate. Presume Burt's estate here will answer his debt, and Loftus his, but Wooder's account having been balanced by Gibson and sent to Surat, the Company must satisfy themselves out of his wages in England. Burt and Loftus' accounts shall be sent on the next ships, and as many else as they may, but the mortality amongst them has been so much that as they finish one man's account another happens. The accounts for the First Joint Stock sent on the Charles's fleet shall be sent balanced this year, but they must have patience for those of the Second, for all goods are not yet delivered to the King, nor can they receive any silks this year upon that account, so that of necessity it must stand open until next year. Would send yearly double copies of their accounts had they penmen able to perform it. Have written earnestly to the President of Surat for able Factors; of those he sent last year Joseph Trottman and William Beard are dead, must return Edward Wadeson and John Lee as not for the Company's service, John Jones and Richard Calley they continue, and of those they were forced to take out of the Charles's fleet, Messrs. Mountfortt, Watts, and Carpenter, all honest and well-governed men, are to be returned, especially Mountfortt, to whose share has fallen the charge of the warehouse, and he travels up and down to Port with goods; the others, Nicholas Cove, Samuel Greene, and Henry Manox, the first Steward of the House, the other two writers, cannot spare for their abilities and language until better furnished. Are left with but three to govern the business, and either failing it would suffer greatly. It is not imperfect young men they require, but such as in case of mortality may be able to take charge of their business; others serve but to be employed with Caphiloes, which might be performed with less expense by Armenian servants. Hope the Company will not conceive amiss their detaining the Surat letter till now, presuming that had they sent it in the bad and distracted occurrents of their business with the King, it would have staggered them in the further prosecution of the trade, which being now finished hope it will be both pleasing and contentful. Second copies of these they propose to dispeed in 10 days by an express to the Ambassador at Constantinople, so that one or both may arrive before setting forth the next fleet. The country is reasonably quiet, and the Emperor fortunate by two great victories against the Turk and Usbeg; he yet sits quiet at Spahan, but in a month or two determines to remove to Farrabatt towards the Caspian Sea, there to make his residence in expectation of the Turks' advance next year, against whom he has in readiness a royal army to bid him welcome. P.S.—Signed by Ed. Heynes. Doubting their ship will not arrive this year, have sent these by the Dutch ship Amboynoe, Commander Phillepe Lu Cas. Endorsed, "Transcript of our Genl letters sent to the Company overland by the way of Aleppo & Constantinople. Dated in Spahan the 26th Septr & 10th Octr 1631.—This received by the Blessing in the box." Enclose,
214. I. "Translation verbatim of the King's contract made with the English for the continuance of three years to come, to say for Anno 1632, 33 & 34." "Commandment from him whom the world obeys is given," That Mahmud Tuckeybeage, Vizier of Ghilan, be given to understand, that whereas for the past and present years called Youtell and Covell a contract was made with Capt. Burt for delivery of Ghilan silks to him at 40 tomans per load of 36 md. shaw, for quarter moneys and the rest in commodities; the King has commanded that from the present year Covell, 1631, to the year Eteell, 1634, 800 loads of silk be delivered in three years to the value of 32,000 tomans to be paid one-third in ready money and two-thirds commodities, viz., in the year Beechell, 1632, 250 loads, in Taha Covell, 1633, 250 loads, and in Eteell, 1634, 300 loads for which the English are to deliver this year 16,000 tomans, and the next year, the same in specified proportions of moneys, broadcloth, kersies, and tin, but for this present year, 1631, Mr. Heynes, the English Captain, shall not demand any silks. And if he have not so much silk in Spahan, he is to send to Ghilan to buy it there, and cause it to be delivered to the English at Spahan free of all charges whatsoever, they paying only the price agreed on. 1631, Sept. 5.
214. II. "Translation of Mullaymbeage's letter to the Hon. the English Company."
Right Honorable Sublime and Illustrious Governor. Moved with clemency, wisdom, and prudence, with whom all love dwelleth, and from whom all good works springeth, and those who are the honor of all Christians in the world, and the best beloved of Jesus Christ, the right worshipful Sir Morris Abbott, Mr. Christopher Clitherowe, Mr. Kirbie, Mr. Andrews, Mr. Harvey [? Harby], Mr. Millward, Mr. Spurstow, Mr. Cokayne, Mr. Garway, Mr. Abdi, Mr. Langham, Mr. Perry, Mr. Cordell, Mr. Martyn, Mr. Williams, Mr. Kerridge, with all the rest of that honble. Company. Be pleased to take notice that a servant of yours salutes you with all possible love that a true heart is able to express, and although our remoteness will not suffer us to have any real knowledge of each other by speculation, yet believe me I am inspired with a fervent zeal of love towards you that glad I am, and shall think myself highly graced thereby to do you any service you shall please to command me, and for the letter and token you were pleased to honor me with, I rest obliged thankful entreating you will excuse my omission in that I have not remembered you in like manner in this so long time as it behoved me, but hereafter God willing by some trusty friend I will endeavour to correspond with your undeserved love, and for present will crave pardon for my neglect therein, desiring you will accept of this mean utterance, yet from a true heart which never shall be wanting to do you service as witnesseth (from that never dying fame of Shah Abbas to this at present no ways inferior) in all business that I have and had with your substitutes here residing, there hath always been a mutual love and good correspondence between each other, and daily it doth increase. For their parts I cannot complain of any omission in that kind, and for my own particular I hope their honest and good natures in which I have had much trial and experience will plead as much as I would say myself. Many at present are extant can witness of the grace and favour I brought Mr. Burt in with the old King and all his nobles and whatsoever I stood him in my own particular were he alive he could not choose but acknowledge it, but it hath been God's will to call him from us, and in his stead to institute that far exceeding Capt. Heynes and Wm. Gibson, from whom I have and do receive as much love and content as ever I did of any that preceded them, and for your business of merchandise I can no ways blame them of the least omission.
Now let it appear to your wise understanding that coming to account to know your rest due from me since Mr. Burt's arrival, your people complain of a great difference which I know not from whence it should arise, wherefore for what was delivered and received in the first two years, which I perceive they here at present are ignorant of. I have sent you an account apart whereby you may plainly see how business hath been past, and believe me on my religion whatsoever is therein inserted is truth.
Again let me entreat you that if by way of advice from a friend I put you privately in mind of your tresspass you will not blame my integrity and good meaning. Your cloth both of the last year and this now come, is so coarse and bad that there is cent. per cent. difference of that you used to send in former years, and it is grown so much in general dislike that I can scarce get any to receive it, although I much bate of the price you deliver it me at. I conceive the fault in those you put in trust to make your provision of this commodity, for else it were impossible (yourselves having had the right thereof) you would let such trash be bought. In fine, if you mean to hold trade you must send better, else will you be forced to keep it, or sell it at some base rates which I know will much redound to your loss. So farewell. Together, 15 pp. [O. C., Vol. XIII., Nos. 1378–1380.]