Volume 8, Chapter 10, Section 5 -- Narrative by William
Hawkins, of Occurrences during his Residence in the Dominions of the Great
This and the next following section may be considered as supplementary to the one immediately preceding; as Captain Hawkins in the Dragon accompanied Captain Keeling, in the third voyage fitted out by the English Company; and Finch was in the same vessel with Hawkins, and accompanied him into the country of the Mogul. The present narrative is said, in its title in the Pilgrims, to have been written to the company, and evidently appears to have been penned by Hawkins himself, without any semblance of having been subjected to the rude pruning knife of Purchas; except omitting so much of the journal as related to occurrences before landing at Surat. Purchas gives the following account of it in a side-note.--E.
"Captain Keeling and William Hawkins had kept company all the outward-bound voyage, as already related, and therefore not necessary to be here repeated, to the road of Delisa, in Socotora, whence, on the 24th June, 1603, Captain Keeling departed in the Dragon, as before related. Captain Hawkins sailed from Delisa in the Hector, for Surat, on the 4th August, having previously built a pinnace, and having received from the general, Captain Keeling, a duplicate of the commission under the great seal."--Purch.
§ 1. Barbarous Usage at Surat by Mucrob Khan; and the treacherous Procedure of the Portuguese and Jesuits.
Arriving at the bar of Surat on the 24th August, 1608, I immediately sent Francis Bucke, merchant, and two others, on shore, to make known that I was sent by the King of England, as his ambassador to the king of the country, together with a letter and present. In answer, I received a message from the governor, by three of his servants accompanying those I sent, saying, he and all that country could afford were at my command, and that I should be made very welcome if I pleased to come on shore. I accordingly landed, accompanied by our merchants and others, equipped in the best manner I could, as befitting the honour of my king and country. On landing, I was well received after their barbarous manner, and vast multitudes of the natives followed after me, desirous of seeing a new-come people whom they had often heard of, but who had never before visited their country. When I drew near the governor's house, I was told he was not well, but I rather think he was drunk with affion [or opium], being an aged man. I went therefore to the chief customer, being the only officer to whom sea-faring causes belonged; as the government of Surat pertained to two great noblemen, one of whom, Khan-Khana, was viceroy of the Decan, and the other, Mucrob-Khan, was viceroy of Cambaya or Guzerat, who had no command in Surat except what regarded the king's customs, and with him only I had to deal.
I told him that the purpose of my coming to Surat was to establish a factory there, and that I had a letter from the king of England to his sovereign for that effect, my sovereign being desirous to form a treaty of peace and amity with his; so that the English might freely come and go, and make sales and purchases, according to the usage of all nations; and finally, that my ship was laden with commodities from our country, which, according to the intelligence of former travellers, were there in request. To this he answered, that he would immediately dispatch an express to his master at Cambaya, as he could do nothing of himself in the premises without his orders. So, taking my leave, I departed to the lodging appointed for me, which was at the custom-house. Next morning I went to visit the governor of the city, to whom I made a present, and who received me with much gravity and outward show of kindness, bidding me heartily welcome, and saying that the country was at my command. After compliments on both sides, I entered upon my main business, when he told me that my affairs were not in his department, as all sea-faring or commercial matters belonged to Mucrob-Khan, to whom at Cambaya he promised to dispatch a footman, and would write a letter in my behalf both for the unloading of my ship and the establishment of a factory. In the meantime he appointed me to lodge with a merchant who understood Turkish, who was my trucheman, or interpreter, being the captain of that ship which was taken by Sir Edward Michelburn.
In consequence of the great rains and heavy floods it was twenty days before the messenger returned from Cambaya; in which interval many of the merchants entertained me in a very friendly manner, when the weather was such that I could get out of doors; for, during almost the whole time of the messenger's absence, it rained almost continually. At the end of twenty days, the messenger came back from Cambaya with the answer of Mucrob Khan, giving licence to land my goods, and to buy and sell for the present voyage; but that he could not grant leave to establish a factory, or for the settlement of future trade, without the commands of his king, which he thought might be procured, if I would take a two months' journey to deliver my king's letter to his sovereign. He likewise sent orders to the customer, that all the goods I might land were to be kept in the custom-house till the arrival of his brother Sheck Abder Rachim, who was to make all convenient dispatch, on purpose to chuse such goods as were fit for the king's use. It may be noticed, however, that this pretence of taking some part of the goods of all men for the king, is merely for their own private gain. Upon this answer I made all dispatch to ease my ship of her heavy burden of lead and iron, which must of necessity be landed, and were placed under the care of the customer [[=customs officer]] till the arrival of the great man. The time being precious, and my ship not able to stay long, I sent on board for three chests of money, with which to purchase such commodities as are vendible at Priaman and Bantam, being those which the Guzerates carry there yearly, and sell to great profit. I then began to make purchases, to the great dissatisfaction of the native merchants, who made loud complaints to the governor and customer of the leave granted me to buy these commodities, which would greatly injure their trade at Priaman and Bantam, supposing I meant only to have bought such goods as were fit for England. At the end of this business the great man arrived from Cambaya, who allowed me to ship my purchases.
In a council of all our merchants, respecting the delivery of the king's letter and the establishment of a factory, it was concluded that these weighty matters could only be properly accomplished by me, from the experience of my former travels, and my knowledge of the language, and as it was known to all that I was the person appointed ambassador for this purpose. I therefore agreed to remain for these ends, and made all haste to ship the goods and dispatch the vessel. This done, I called Mr Marlow and all of the ship's company who were on shore, and acquainted them with my intentions, directing them all to receive Mr Marlow as their commander; and to give him all due reverence and obedience as they had done me. I then accompanied them to the water-side, and bade them farewell.
Next day, when going about my affairs to wait upon Abder Rachim, I met ten or twelve of the better sort of our men in a great fright, who told me that our two barks, with thirty men, and all our goods, had been taken by a Portuguese frigate or two, they only having escaped. I asked in what manner they were taken, and if they did not fight in their own defence? They answered me, that Mr Marlow would not allow them, as the Portuguese were our friends. They said also that Bucke had gone to the Portuguese without a pawn, and had betrayed them; but, in fact, Bucke went on the oath and faithful promise of the Portuguese captain, but was never allowed to return. I sent immediately a letter to the captain-major of the Portuguese, demanding the release of our men and goods, as we were English, and our sovereigns were in peace and amity; adding, that we were sent to the Mogul's country by our king, with letters for the Mogul to procure licence for us to trade; and that I held the king's commission for the government of the English in that country; that his restoring his majesty's subjects and their goods would be well taken at his own king's hands, but the contrary would produce a breach between the crowns of England and Spain. On the receipt of this letter, as the messenger told me, the proud rascal vapoured exceedingly, most vilely abusing our king, whom he called a king of fishermen, and of a contemptible island, whose commission he despised; and scornfully refused to send me any answer.
I chanced on the following day to meet the captain of one of the Portuguese frigates, who came on business ashore from the captain-major; which business, as I understand, was to desire the governor to send me to him as a prisoner, because we were Hollanders. Knowing what he was, I took occasion to speak to him of the abuses offered to the King of England and his subjects. He pretended that these seas belonged to the King of Portugal, and no one ought to come there without his licence. I told him, that the seas of India were as free to subjects of England as to those of Spain, and that the licence of the King of England was as valid as that of the King of Spain, and whoever pretended otherwise was a liar and a villain; and desired him to tell his captain-major that in abusing the King of England he was a base villain, and a traitor to his own king, which I was ready to maintain against him with my sword, if he dared to come on shore, whereto I challenged him. Seeing that I was much moved, the Moors caused the Portuguese to depart. This Portuguese came to my house some two hours after, and offered to procure the release of my men and goods, if I would be liberal to him. I entertained him kindly, and gave him great promises; but before he left the town, my men and goods were sent off for Goa.
I had my goods ready about five days before I could get a clearance to ship them, waiting for the arrival of Abder Rachim, which was the 3d October; and two days afterwards the ship set sail. I was now left in Surat with only one merchant, William Finch, who was mostly sick, and unable to go abroad to do any business; all the rest of my attendants being two servants, a cook, and a boy, which were all the company I had to defend us from so many enemies, who went about to destroy us, and endeavoured to prevent my going to the Great Mogul. But God preserved me, and in spite of them all I took heart and resolution to proceed on my travels. After the departure of our ship, I learnt that my men and goods had been betrayed to the Portuguese by Mucrob Khan and his followers; for it was a laid plot by Mucrob Khan and the Jesuit Peneiro, to protract time till the Portuguese frigates might come to the bar of Surat, which was done so secretly that we never heard of them till they had taken our barks.
So long as my ship remained at the bar I was much flattered, but after her departure I was most unsufferably misused; being in a heathen country, environed by so many enemies, who plotted daily to murder me and to cozen me of my goods. Mucrob Khan, to get possession of my goods, took what he chose, and left what he pleased, giving me such price as his own barbarous conscience dictated; where thirty-five was agreed, giving me only eighteen, not regarding his brother's bill, who had his full authority. Even on his own terms, it was hardly possible to get any money from his chief servant, as we only received a small part after the time appointed was expired, before Mucrob came to Surat; and after he came I was debarred of all, though he outwardly flattered and dissembled for almost three months, feeding me with continual promises. In the meantime he came three times to my house, sweeping me clean of all things that were good; and when he saw I had no more worth coveting, he gradually withdrew his attentions and pretended kindness. Most of this time William Finch was ill of the flux, but, thank God, he recovered past all hope. As for me I durst not venture out of doors, as the Portuguese were lurking about in crowds to assault or murder me, their armada being then at Surat.
Their first plot against me was thus. I was invited by Hagio [Haji] Nazam to the dispatching of his ship for Mecca, as it is the custom on such occasions to make great feasts for all the principal people of the town. It was my good fortune at this time, that a great captain belonging to the viceroy of Guzerat, residing in Amadavar [Ahmedabad], was then at Surat, and was likewise invited to this feast, which was held at the water-side, near which the Portuguese had two frigates of their armada, which came there to receive tribute for the ships about to depart, and likewise to procure refreshments. Out of these frigates there came three gallants to the tent where I was, and some forty Portuguese were scattered about the water-side, ready to join in the assault on the first signal. These three gallants that came to our tent, were armed in buff-coats down to their knees, with rapiers and pistols at their sides, and, immediately on entering, demanded who was the English captain? I presently rose, and told them I was the man; and seeing some intended mischief by their countenances, I immediately laid hand on my weapon. The Mogul captain, perceiving treason was meant against me, both he and his followers drew their swords; and if the Portuguese had not been the swifter, both they and their scattered crew had come ill off.
Another time some thirty or forty of them came to assault me in my house, having a friar along with them to animate their courage, and give them absolution. But I was always on my guard, and had a strong house with good doors. Many of the Portuguese at other times used to lurk for me and mine in the streets; so that I was forced to complain to the governor, that I could not go about my business on account of the Portuguese coming armed into the city to murder me; and represented that they were not in use at other times to come armed into the city. The governor then sent word to the Portuguese not to come armed into the city at their peril.
Mucrob Khan came to Surat accompanied by a Jesuit named Padre Peneiro, who had offered him 40,000 dollars to send me prisoner to Damaun, as I was afterwards certainly informed by Hassen Ally and Ally Pommory. On his arrival I went to visit him, giving him presents, besides those formerly given to his brother; and for a time, as already mentioned, I had many outward shows of kindness from him, till such time as I demanded my money, when he told me flatly he would not give me 20 mahmudies the vara, as had been agreed, but would rather give me back my cloth. I dissembled my sense of this unjust procedure as well as I could, entreating leave to proceed to Agra to wait upon the king; telling him I meant to leave William Finch as chief in my place, who would either receive the money or the goods, as he might please to conclude. Upon this he gave me his licence and a letter to the king, promising me an escort of forty horsemen; which promise he did not perform. After I got this licence, Father Peneiro put into his head that he ought not to allow me to go, as I would complain against him to the king; thus plotting to overthrow my intended journey. Mucrob Khan could not prevent my going, because I was sent by a king; but endeavoured to prevail on my interpreter and coachman to poison or murder me by the way; which invention was devised by the Jesuit. But God, of his mercy, discovered these plots, and the contrivances of the Jesuit took no effect.
§ 2. Journey of the Author to Agra, and his Entertainment at the Court of the Great Mogul.
William Finch being now in good health, I left all things belonging to our trade in his hands, giving him instructions how to conduct himself in my absence. So I began to take up soldiers to conduct me in safety; being denied by Mucrob Khan. Besides some shot and bowmen whom I hired, I applied to a captain of the Khan-Khana, to let me have 40 or 50 horsemen to escort me to the Khan-Khana, who was then viceroy of Deccan, and resided in Bramport. This captain did all in his power for me, giving me a party of Patan horsemen, who are much feared in these parts for their valour. If I had not done this I had surely been overthrown, as the Portuguese of Damaun had induced an ancient friend of theirs, a Rajah, who was absolute lord of a province called Cruly, situated between Damaun, Guzerat, and the Deccan, to be ready with 200 horsemen to intercept me; but I went so well provided with a strong escort, that they durst not encounter me; and for that time also I escaped.
Then at Dayta, another province or principality, my coachman having got drunk with some of his kinsmen, discovered that he was hired to murder me. Being overheard by some of my soldiers, they came and told me that it was to have been done next morning at the commencement of our journey, as we usually set out two hours before day. Upon this notice, I examined the coachman and his friends, in presence of the captain of my escort. He could not deny the truth, but would not reveal who had hired him, though much beaten; and cursed his bad luck that he could not effect his purpose. So I sent him back prisoner to the governor of Surat. My broker or interpreter afterwards told me, that both he and the coachman were hired by Mucrob Khan, by the persuasion of the Jesuit, the one to poison and the other to murder me. The interpreter said he was to receive nothing till the deed was done, which he never meant to perform, being resolved to be faithful. Thus God again preserved me. This was five days after the commencement of my journey, having left Surat on the 1st February, 1609.
Continuing my journey for Burhanpoor, some two days after leaving Dayta, the Patans who had hitherto escorted me went back, leaving me to be forwarded by another Patan captain, who was governor of that lordship, by whom I was kindly entertained. His name was Sher-Khan, and having been some time a prisoner among the Portuguese, and speaking that language fluently, he was glad to do me service, being of a nation that is in great enmity to the Portuguese. He escorted me in person with forty horsemen for two days, till we were past the dangerous places; during which time he encountered a troop of outlaws, of whom he took four alive and slew eight, all the rest escaping. Before leaving me, he gave me letters, authorising me to use his house at Burhanpoor, which was a very great courtesy, as otherwise I should hardly have known where to get lodgings, the city being so full of soldiers, which were preparing for war with the people of the Deccan. I arrived in safety at Burhanpoor, thanks be to God, on the eighteenth of February. Next day I went to court to visit the Khan-Khana, who was lord-general and viceroy of the Deccan, and made him a present, as the custom is, which he received very graciously. After three hours conference, he made me a feast; and being, risen from table, he invested me with two robes, one of fine woollen, and the other of cloth of gold; giving me a letter of recommendation to the king, which availed me much. Then embracing me, I departed. The language we spoke was Turkish, which he spoke very well.
I remained in Burhanpoor till the 2nd of March, not being sooner able to effect the exchange of the money I had with me, and waiting likewise to join a caravan. Having then got a new escort of soldiers, I resumed my journey to Agra, where, after much fatigue and many dangers, I arrived in safety on the 16th April. Being in the city, and seeking out for a house in a secret manner, notice was carried to the king of my arrival, but that I was not to be found. He presently charged many troops both of horse and foot to seek for me, and commanded his knight-marshal to bring me in great state to court, as an ambassador ought to be; which he did with a great train, making such extraordinary haste, that he hardly allowed me time to put on my best apparel. In fine, I was brought before the king, bringing only a slight present of cloth, and that not esteemed, as what I had designed for the king was taken from me by Mucrob Khan, of which I complained to his majesty.
After making my salutation, he bid me heartily welcome with a smiling countenance; on which I repeated my obeisance and duty. Having his majesty's letter in my hand, he called me to come near him, reaching down his hand from his royal seat, where he sat in great majesty on high to be seen of the people. He received the letter very graciously, viewing it for some time, both looking at the seal and at the way in which it was made up; and then called an old Jesuit who was present, to read and explain the letter. While the Jesuit was reading the letter, he spoke to me in the kindest manner, asking me the contents of the letter, which I told him; upon which he immediately promised, and swore by God, that he would grant and allow with all his heart every thing the king had asked, and more if his majesty required. The Jesuit told him the substance of the letter, but discommended the style, saying that it was basely penned, writing vestia without majestad. On which I said to the king, "May it please your majesty, these people are our enemies: How can it be that this letter should be irreverently expressed, seeing that my sovereign demands favour from your majesty?" He acknowledged the truth of this observation.
Perceiving that I understood Turkish, which he spoke with great readiness, he commanded me to follow him into his presence-chamber, having then risen from the place of open audience, as he wished to have farther conference with me. I went in accordingly, and waited there two hours, till the King returned from his women. Their calling me to him, he said he understood that Mucrob Khan had not dealt well by me, but desired me to be of good cheer, for he would remedy all. It would seem that the enemies of Mucrob Khan had acquainted the king with all his proceedings; for indeed the king has spies upon the conduct of all his nobles. I made answer, that I was quite certain all matters would go well with me so long as his majesty was pleased to grant me his protection. After this, he presently dispatched a post to Surat with his commands to Mucrob Khan, earnestly enjoining him in our behalf, as he valued his friendship, which he would lose if he did not deal justly by the English, according to their desire. By the same messenger I sent a letter to William Finch, desiring him to go with this command to Mucrob Khan, at the receipt of which he wondered that I had got safe to Agra, and had not been murdered or poisoned by the way; of which speech Finch informed me afterwards.
After some farther conference with the king, as it grew late, he commanded that I should be brought daily into his presence, and gave me in charge to one of his captains, named Houshaber Khan, ordering that I should lodge at his house till a convenient residence could be procured for my use; and that when I was in want of anything from the king, he was to act as my solicitor. According to his command, I resorted daily to court, having frequent conference with the king, both by day and by night; as he delighted much to talk with me, both of the affairs of England and other countries; and also made many enquiries respecting the West Indies, of which he had heard long before, yet doubted there being any such place, till I assured him I had been in the country.
Many days and weeks passed thus, and I became in high favour with the king, to the great grief of all mine enemies; when, chusing a favourable time, I solicited his order or commission for the establishment of our factory. He asked me, if I meant to remain at his court? to which I answered, that I should do so till our ships came to Surat, when I proposed to go home with his majesty's answer to the letter from my king. He then said, that he expected I should stay much longer, as he intended by our next ships to send an ambassador to the King of England, and he wished me to remain with him till a successor was sent to me from my sovereign: that my remaining would be of material benefit to my nation, as I should be in the way to put all wrongs to right, if any were offered to the English, as whatever I might see beneficial for them would be granted to my petitions; swearing by his father's soul, that if I remained with him, he would grant me articles for our factory to my full contentment, and would never go back from his word; and that besides he would give me ample maintenance. I answered, that I would consider of his proposal: and, as he was daily inciting me to stay, I at last consented; considering that I should be able to do good service both to my own sovereign and him, especially as he offered me an allowance of £4200 sterling for the first year, promising yearly to augment my salary till I came to the rank of 1000 horse; my first year being the allowance of commander of 400. The nobility of India have their titles and emoluments designated by the number of horse they command, from 40 up to 12,000, which last pay belongs only to princes and their sons.
Trusting, therefore, to his promises, and believing that it might be beneficial both to my nation and myself, I did not think it amiss to yield to his request; considering that I was deprived of the advantages I might have reaped by going to Bantam; and that your worships would send another in my place after half a dozen years, while in the meantime I might do you service and feather my own nest. Then, because my name was somewhat harsh for his pronunciation, he gave me the name of Ingles Khan, which is to say English lord: though in Persia khan is equivalent to duke. Being now in the height of favour, the Jesuits and Portuguese did every thing they could for my overthrow; and indeed the principal Mahometans about the king envied much to see a Christian in such favour.
Father Peneiro, who was with Mucrob Khan, and the Jesuits here at Agra, in my opinion did little regard their masses and other church matters, in studying how to overthrow my affairs. Advice being sent to Goa and Padre Peneiro at Surat or Cambaya, by the Jesuits here at Agra, of my favour with the king, they did all in their power to gain Mucrob Khan to aid the Portuguese; for which purpose the viceroy at Goa wrote to him, sending rich presents, together with many toys for the king. These presents, and many fair promises, so wrought with Mucrob Khan that he sent a memorial to the king, accompanied by the present from the viceroy, stating that permitting the English to trade in the land would occasion the loss of the maritime country about Surat, Cambaya, and other places; and that his ancient friends the Portuguese were much offended by his entertaining me, as a rumour went among them that I was now general of 10,000 horse, and was ready to assault Diu on the arrival of the next English ships. The letter of the Portuguese viceroy was much to the same effect. To all which the king answered, that he had but one Englishman at his court, whom they had no reason to fear, as he pretended to none of those things they alleged, and had refused an establishment near the sea, preferring to live at court.
The Portuguese were quite enraged with this answer, and laboured incessantly to get me out of the world. I then represented to the king the dangerous predicament in which I was, and the uncomfortable situation I was reduced to: My boy Stephen Grosvenor just dead, and my man Nicholas Ufflet extremely sick, who was the only English person with me, while I was myself beginning to fall much off. The king immediately called for the Jesuits, and assured them, if I died by any extraordinary casualty, that they should all feel it to their cost. The king was then very earnest with me to take a white maiden from his palace to be my wife, offering to give her slaves and all other things necessary, and promising that she would turn Christian; by which means, he said, my meat and drink would be properly looked after by her and her women, and I might live without fear. In answer, I refused to accept of any Mahometan woman, but said if any Christian could be found I would gratefully accept his royal bounty.
Then the king called to remembrance the daughter of one Mubarick Shah, who was an Armenian Christian, of the most ancient Christian race; Mubarick having been a captain, and in great favour with Acbar Padisha, this king's father. This captain had died suddenly, and without a will, leaving a vast deal of money, all of which was robbed by his brothers and kinsmen, or absorbed in debts due to him which could not be recovered, leaving only a few jewels to this his only child. Considering that she was a Christian of honest descent, and that I had passed my word to the king, I could no longer resist my fortune: Wherefore I took her, and, for want of a minister, I married her before Christian witnesses, my man Nicholas Ufflet acting as priest; which I thought had been lawful, till I met with the chaplain who came with Sir Henry Middleton, who shewed me the error; on which I was again married. Henceforwards I lived contented and without fear, my wife being willing to go where I went, and to live as I lived.
After the settlement of this affair, news were sent me that the Ascension was coming to Surat, which was learnt from the men belonging to her pinnaces, which were cast away near that place. I then went to the king, and told him of this circumstance, craving his leave to repair to Surat, with his commission for settling trade at that port, which he was very willing to allow, limiting me to a certain time of absence, when I was to return again to Agra. When the king's chief vizier, Abdal Hassan, heard this, who was an enemy of all Christians, he told the king that my going would be the occasion of war, and might occasion the ruin of one of his great men, who had been sent to Goa to purchase toys for the king. Upon this, the king signified his pleasure that I was to remain; but gave immediate orders to have the commission effectually written and sent off to the chief factor at Surat. In fine, the commission was written out in golden letters under his great seal, as fully, freely, and firmly, for our benefit as we could possibly desire. This I presently obtained, and sent it off to William Finch at Surat.
Before its arrival, news came that the Ascension was cast away, and her men saved, but were not allowed to come to Surat. I immediately communicated this intelligence to the king, who was much dissatisfied with the conduct of Mucrob Khan, my great enemy, and gave me another order for their good usage, and that every means should be used to save the goods if possible. These two royal orders came almost at the same time to Surat, to the great joy of William Finch and the rest, who much admired how I had been able to procure them. Thus continuing in great favour with the king, being almost continually in his sight, and serving him for half the twenty-four hours, I failed not to have most of his nobles for my enemies, who were chiefly Mahometans; for it went against their hearts to see a Christian in so great favour and familiarity with the king, and more especially because he had promised to make his brother's children Christians, which he actually caused to be done about two years after my coming to Agra.
Some time after, some of the people belonging to the Ascension came to me, whom I could have wished to have behaved themselves better, as their conduct was much pried into by the king. In all this time I had been unable to recover the debt due me by Mucrob Khan. At length he was sent for by the king, to answer for many faults laid to his charge, and much injustice and tyranny he had been guilty of to the people under his authority, having ruined many, who petitioned the king for justice. This dog now sent many bribes to the king's sons and the nobles about his person, to endeavour to make his peace, and they laboured in his behalf. When news came that Mucrob Khan was near, the king sent orders to attach his goods, which were so abundant that the king was two months in viewing them, every day allotting a certain quantity to be brought before him. What the king thought fit for his own use he kept, and returned the rest to Mucrob Khan. In viewing these goods, there appeared certain muskets, with a rich corselet and head-piece, with other things, forming the present I intended for the king; which Mucrob had taken from me under pretence that they were for the king, and would not allow me to deliver myself. At the sight of these, I was so bold as to tell the king they were mine.
After the king had viewed these goods, a Banyan made a most grievous complaint to the king against Mucrob Khan, who had taken away his daughter, pretending she was for the king; but had deflowered her himself, and gave her afterwards to a Bramin who was in his service. The man who made this charge protested, that his daughter surpassed all women he had ever seen for beauty. This matter being examined into, and the offence clearly proved against Mucrob, he was committed as a prisoner into the custody of a noble of high rank; and the Bramin was condemned to be made a complete eunuch. Before this happened I went several times to visit Mucrob, who made many fair promises that he would deal honestly by me and be my friend, and that I should have my right. After his disgrace his friends daily solicited for him, and at length got him clear; but with commandment to pay every man his right, and that no more complaints should be heard against him, if he loved his life. So he paid every one his due except me, whom he would not pay. I then entreated him to deliver me back my cloth, that I might if possible end with him by fair means; but he put me off from day to day with fresh delays till his departure shortly after; for the king restored him his place again, and he was to go to Goa about a fair ballas ruby and other rarities which were promised to the king.
§ 3. The Inconstancy of the King, and the Departure of Captain Hawkins with Sir Henry Middleton to the Red Sea, and thence to Bantam, and afterwards for England.
All my going and sending to Mucrob Khan for my money and cloth were in vain, and seeing myself so grossly abused by him, I was forced to demand justice of the king, who commanded that the money should be brought before him; yet for all the king's commands, Mucrob did as he liked, and in spite of every thing I could do or say, he finally cheated me of 12,500 mahmudies which he owed me, besides interest. The greatest man in the whole country was his friend, who with many others took his part, and were continually murmuring to the king about suffering the English to come into the country, saying that if our nation once got footing in the country we would dispossess him of it. The king, upon this, called me before him to make answer to these charges. I said, if any such matters were done or attempted, I was ready to answer with my life, for the English were in no respect that base nation that our enemies represented; and that all these things were laid to our charge merely because I demanded my due and could not get it. At this time I used to visit daily the king's chief favourites and nearest relatives, who spoke to him in my favour, so that he commanded no more such injuries to be offered me. So, thinking to use my best endeavour to recover my loss, I spoke to the chief vizier, that he might aid me; but he answered me in a threatening manner, that if I opened my mouth again on this subject, he would oblige me to pay 100,000 mahmudies, which the king had lost in his customs at Surat, to which no persons durst now trade for fear of the Portuguese, who were displeased because the king entertained me, and granted licence for the English to trade. Owing to this I was constrained to be silent, for I knew that my money had been swallowed up by these dogs.
Mucrob Khan was now ordered in public to make ready to depart upon an appointed day for Guzerat, whence he was to proceed to Goa, and was on that day to come to court to take leave, as is the custom. At this time three principal merchants of Surat came to court about affairs in which they had been employed by the king or the chief vizier. Likewise, some six days before this, a letter came to the king from the Portuguese viceroy, accompanied by a present of many rarities; in which letter the viceroy represented how highly the King of Portugal was dissatisfied at the English being admitted into the king's dominions, considering the ancient amity between him and his majesty. After many compliments, the viceroy stated that a merchant had arrived at Goa with a very fine ballas ruby, weighing 350 rotties, of which the pattern was sent.
On coming to take his leave, accompanied by Padre Peneiro, who was to go along with him, the three Surat merchants being in the presence, Mucrob Khan made his speech to the king, saying that he hoped to obtain the great ruby, and many other valuable things, for his majesty from the Portuguese, if the privileges granted to the English were disannulled; and besides, that it would occasion great loss to his majesty and his subjects, if the English were suffered any more to frequent his ports. In confirmation of this, he called upon the Surat merchants to declare to his majesty what loss was occasioned by the English, as they best knew. They affirmed that they were all likely to be undone because of the English trading at Surat, and that no toys or curiosities would hereafter come into his majesty's dominions, because the Portuguese, being masters of the sea, would not suffer them to go in or out of the ports, because of the licence granted to the English. All this was a plot concerted by the Portuguese with Mucrob Khan and the vizier, with the assistance of the jesuits; and by means of these speeches, and the king's anxiety to procure the great ruby, together with the promises of the padres to procure many rarities for his majesty, my affairs were utterly overthrown; and the king commanded Mucrob Khan to inform the Portuguese viceroy, that the English should not be suffered any more to come into his ports.
I now saw plainly that it would be quite bootless for me to make any attempt to counteract these plots, by petitioning the king, till a good while after the departure of Mucrob Khan, as my enemies were very numerous, though they had received many presents from me. When I saw a convenient time, I resolved to petition the king again, having in the mean time found a fit toy to present, as the custom is, for no man who makes a petition must come empty handed. On presenting this petition, the king immediately granted my request, commanding the vizier to make me out another commission or licence in as ample form as before, and expressly commanded that no person should presume to speak to him to the contrary, it being his fixed resolution that the English should have freedom to trade in his dominions. Of this alteration the Jesuits at Agra had immediate notice; for no matter passes in the court of the Mogul, however secret, but it may be known in half an hour, by giving a small matter to the secretary of the day; for everything is written down, and the writers or secretaries have their appointed days in turn. The Jesuits instantly sent off a speedy messenger with letters to Peneiro and Mucrob Khan, giving them notice of this new turn in my affairs; on receipt of which they immediately resolved not to proceed to Goa till I were again overthrown. Thereupon Mucrob Khan transmitted a petition to the king, and letters to his friend the vizier, stating that it was not for his majesty's honour to send him to Goa, if the promises made to the Portuguese were not performed; and that the purpose of his journey would be entirely frustrated, if the new licence given to the English were not recalled. On reading this, the king went again from his word and recalled my licence, esteeming a few toys promised him by the Jesuits beyond his honour.
Being desirous to see the final issue of these things, I went to Hogio Jahan [Haji Jehan], who was lord-general of the king's palace, and second officer of the kingdom, entreating him to stand my friend. He went immediately to the king, telling him that I was sore cast down, because Abdul Hassan, the chief vizier, would not deliver me the commission which his majesty had accorded to me. Being in the presence, and very near the king, I heard him give the following answer: "It is very true that the commission is sealed and ready for delivery; but owing to letters received front Mucrob Khan, and better consideration respecting the affairs of my ports in Guzerat, I do not now think fit that it should be granted." Thus was I tossed and tumbled, like a merchant adventuring his all in one bottom, and losing all at once by storms or pirates. In regard likewise to my pension, I was mightily crossed; as many times when I applied to Abdul Hassan, he would make answer, "I know well that you are in no such need, as your own master bears your charges, and the king knew not what he did in giving to you, from whom he ought on the contrary to receive." I represented to him that it was his majesty's pleasure, and none of my request, and being his majesty's gift, I saw no reason for being deprived of my right. Then he would bid me have patience, and he would find me out a good living. Thus was I put off from time to time by this mine enemy; insomuch that all the time I served at court I could not get a living that would yield me any thing, the vizier giving me always my living on assignments on places that were in the hands of outlaws or insurgents, except once that I had an assignment on Lahor by special command of the king, but of which I was soon deprived; and all I received from the beginning was not quite £300, and even of this a considerable portion was spent upon the charges of men sent to the lordships on which my pension was assigned.
Seeing now that the living which the king had bestowed upon me was taken away, I was past all hope; for before this, on hearing that our ships were arrived, I expected the king would perform his former promises, in hopes of receiving rare things from England. When I now presented a petition to the king concerning my pension, he turned me over to Abdul Hassan, who not only refused to let me have my pension, but gave orders that I should be no more permitted to come within the red rails, being the place of honour in the presence; where all the time of my residence hitherto I was placed very near the king's person, only five men of the whole court being before me.
My affairs being thus utterly overthrown, I determined, with the advice of my friends, to know exactly what I had to rest upon, and either to be well in or well out. I therefore made ready and presented a petition to the king, representing how I had been dealt with by Abdul Hassan who had himself appropriated what his majesty had been pleased to order for my living: That the expences of my residence at court for so long a time, at his majesty's command, and under promises to provide for me, would be my utter ruin; wherefore, I humbly entreated his majesty to take my case into his gracious consideration, either to establish me as formerly, or to grant me leave to depart. In answer to this, he gave me permission to go away, and commanded a safe conduct to be given me, to pass freely and without molestation throughout his dominions. On receiving this passport, I came to make my obeisance, and to take my leave, when I entreated to have an answer to the letters of my sovereign. On this Abdul Hassan came to me from the king, and utterly refused in a disdainful manner; saying, that it was not meet for so great a monarch to write a letter to any petty prince or governor. To this I answered, that the king knew more of the mightiness of the King of England than to suppose him a petty governor.
I went home to my house, using all my endeavours to get my goods and debts gathered together, meaning to purchase commodities with the money remaining, and exerted every diligence to get out of the country, waiting only for the return of Nicholas Ufflet from Lahor with some indigo then in charge of William Finch, who was determined to go home over land, as he had no hope of our ever being able to embark at Surat. I would willingly have gone home by the same route, but it was well known that I could not travel through Turkey, especially in company with a female. I was forced therefore to curry favour with the Jesuits, to procure me a pass or seguro from the Portuguese viceroy, to go by way of Goa to Portugal, and thence to England. But when the mother and kindred of my wife saw that I was about to take her away, and supposing they should never see her more, they were so importunate with me, that I was forced to engage that she should go no farther with me than Goa, which was in India, and where they could go to visit her; and that, if at any time I were to go to Portugal or elsewhere, I should then leave her with such a dower as is usual with the Portuguese when they die. But knowing that if my wife should chuse to go with me, all these might have no effect, I concerted with the Jesuits to procure me two seguros or passports; one giving me free permission and liberty of conscience to reside and trade at Goa, which only I meant to show to my wife's relations; while the other was to contain an absolute grant for a free passage to Portugal, and so for England, with my wife and goods, so as not to be hindered by any interference of my wife's relations; anything that I might be under the necessity of conceding to them to be void and of no effect, but that I should have liberty to stay or go when I pleased, with liberty of conscience for myself. This last seguro was desired to be transmitted to me at Cambaya by the fleet of Portuguese frigates, as at my departure our ships were not yet come.
The fathers would readily have done this and much more for me, only to get me out of the country. About this time I had notice of the arrival of three English ships at Mocha, and that they were surely to come to Surat at the proper season; which news were sent me from Burhanpoor by Nicholas Banham, who had gone from me six weeks before for the recovery of some debts, and with letters for our ships if any came, and it were possible to send them. While I was preparing to depart, news came of the return of Mucrob Khan from Goa, with many rare and fine things for the king; but he brought not the balas ruby, saying that it was false; or at least he made this excuse, lest, if he had given the Portuguese merchant his price, it might be valued much lower when it came to the king, and he be forced to pay the overplus, as had happened before on similar occasions. I likewise understood that Mucrob Khan did not receive such satisfaction from the Portuguese as he expected.
At this time my great enemy the chief vizier was thrust out of his place, owing to the complaints of many of the nobles who were in debt for their expences, and were unable to procure payment of their pensions, having their assignments either upon barren places, or on such as were in rebellion, Abdul Hassan having retained all the good districts to himself, and robbed them all. From these complaints and others he had much ado to escape with his life, being degraded from his high office, and ordered to the wars in the Deccan. One Gaih Beg, who was the king's chief treasurer, and whose daughter was chief queen or favourite, was made vizier in his stead. The new vizier was one who, in outward show at least, made much of me, and was always willing to serve me on occasion. His son and I were great friends, having often visited at my house, and was now raised to high dignities by the king. On this change of affairs, and being certified through various channels of the arrival of our ships, I determined to try what I could now do to re-establish my affairs; and knowing that nothing could be accomplished through these Moors without gifts and bribes, I sent my broker to procure me some jewels fit to be presented to the king's sister and new paramour, and to the new vizier and his son. After receiving my gifts, they began on all sides to solicit my cause.
News came to Agra, from certain Banyans at Diu, that three English ships were seen off that place, and three days afterwards other intelligence was received that they were anchored at the bar of Surat. Upon these news, the vizier asked me if I had a proper gift for the king, on which I showed him a ruby ring, and he desired me to prepare for going to court along with him, when he would present my petition to the king, who, he said, was already won over to my interest. So, once more coming before his majesty, and my petition being read, he presently granted the establishment of our factory, and that the English might come and trade in all freedom at Surat, commanding the vizier to make out my commission or licence to that effect with all expedition. The vizier made me a sign to come forwards and make my obeisance, which I did according to the custom. But mark what followed. A nobleman of high rank, and in great favour with the king, who was a most intimate friend both of the late vizier and of Mucrob Khan, having been brought up along with them from childhood as pages together to the king, made a speech to the king to the following effect: "That the granting of this licence would be the ruin of all his majesty's sea-ports and people, as his majesty had been already certified by several of his subjects: that it was not consistent with the king's honour to contradict what he had granted to the Portuguese, his ancient friends: and that whoever solicited in favour of the English knew not what they were about; or, if they knew, were not friends to his majesty."
Upon this speech my business was again quite overthrown, and all my time and presents thrown away, as the king now said he would not allow the English to trade at his sea-ports, owing to the inconveniences that had already arisen from their trading at Surat. But as for myself, if I would remain in his service, he would command that the allowance he had formerly granted me should be given to my satisfaction. I declined this, unless the English were allowed the freedom of trade according to his promise; saying that my own sovereign would take care that I should not want. I then requested his majesty would be pleased to give me an answer to the letter I had brought him from my sovereign; but after consulting some time with his viziers, this was refused.
I now took my leave, and departed from Agra the 2d of November, 1611, being in a thousand difficulties what course I had best take. I was in fear lest the Portuguese might poison me for the sake of my goods; it was dangerous to travel through the Deccan to Masulipatam on account of the wars; I could not go by land to Europe by reason of the Turks; and I was resolved not to remain among these faithless infidels. I arrived at Cambaya the 31st December, 1611, where I had certain news of our ships being at Surat, to which place I sent a foot-messenger with a letter, saying that the friars at Cambaya asserted that four large ships, with certain gallies and frigates, wore preparing at Goa to attack our ships, and that the Portuguese were contriving treachery against Sir Henry Middleton; all of which the fathers wished me to apprize him of, which I afterwards found was a political contrivance to put Sir Henry in fear, that he might depart.
As for me, my ostensible object was to go home by means of the Portuguese, as I had promised my wife and her brother, who was now with us, and to delude him and the friars till I could get away on board our ships, which I was sure to know by the return of my messenger. In the mean time I used every endeavour to get away my wife's brother, who departed two days afterwards for Agra, without once suspecting that I meant to go in the English ships. Nicholas Ufflet now went from Cambaya to examine the road; and when two days journey from Cambaya, he met Captain William Sharpey, Mr. Fraine, and Mr. Hugh Greete, who were sent to me at Cambaya by Sir Henry to my no small joy. Wherefore, making all the haste I could to prepare for my departure, I left Cambaya on the 18th January, 1612, and got to our ships on the 26th of the same month, when I was most kindly received and welcomed by Sir Henry Middleton.
We departed from Surat on the 11th February, and arrived at Dabul on the 16th, where we took a Portuguese ship and frigate, out of which we took some quantity of goods. Leaving Dabul on the 5th March for the Red Sea, with intention to revenge our wrongs both on the Turks and Moguls, we arrived there on the 3d April, where we found three English ships, whose general was Captain John Saris. Having dispatched our business in the Red Sea, we sailed from thence the 16th August, 1612, and arrived at Tecu in Sumatra the 19th October. Our business there being ended, we departed thence on the night of the 19th November, and struck that night, three leagues off, on a bed of coral, in about three fathoms water, but by the great mercy of God escaped being lost; yet we were forced to put back to Tecu to stop our leaks, for which purpose we had to unload our ship. The leaks being somewhat stopped, and our goods reloaded, we departed again the 8th December, and arrived at Bantam the 21st of that month.
As Sir Henry did not think his ship, the Trades-increase, in sufficient condition for going home that season, he was forced to remain and have her careened. Having closed accounts with Sir Henry to his satisfaction, I shipped my goods in the Solomon, which came for our voyage, for saving a greater freight, but could not be admitted in her myself; Captain Saris, however, accommodated me in the Thomas, and it was agreed that the Solomon and we were to keep company. We accordingly sailed from Bantam on the 30th January, 1613, and arrived at Saldanha bay the 21st April, having much foul weather for near 200 leagues from the Cape. We here found four ships of Holland, which left Bantam a month before us. The Hollanders were very kind to us all, and especially attentive to me, as they had heard much of my favour and high estate at Agra, by an agent of theirs who resided at Masulipatam. Some eight days afterwards the Expedition came in, and brought me a letter from your worships, which was delivered two days after. The wind coming fair, we departed from Saldanha the 21st May, 1613.
§ 4. A brief Discourse of the Strength, Wealth, and Government of the Great Mogul, with some of his Customs.
I first begin with his princes, dukes, marquisses, earls, viscounts, barons, knights, esquires, gentlemen, and yeomen; for as the Christian sovereigns distinguish their nobility by these titles, so do the Moguls distinguish theirs by the numbers of horse they are appointed to command; unless it be those whom he most favours, whom he honours with the title of Khan and Immirza; none having the title of Sultan except his sons. Khan, in the Persian language, is equivalent to duke with us in Europe. Immirza is the title given to the sons of the king's brother. These titles or ranks are of 12,000 horse, of which there are only four, being the king himself, his mother, his eldest son, Prince or Sultan Parvis, and one more named Khan Azam, who is of the blood-royal of the Usbecks. The next rank, equivalent to our dukes, are leaders of 9000 horse, of whom there are three. Then of marquisses, or commanders of 5000, there are eighteen. The others are from 2000 down to 20; of all which ranks there are 2950. Besides which there are 5000 men, called Haddies, who receive monthly pay, equal to from one to six horsemen. Of such officers as belong to the court and camp there are 36,000, as porters, gunners, watermen, lackies, horse-keepers, elephant-keepers, matchlock-men, frasses or tent-men, cooks, light-bearers, gardeners, keepers of wild beasts, &c. All these are paid from the royal treasury, their wages being from ten to three rupees. All the captains under the king are obliged, on eight days warning, to furnish the number of horsemen which belong to the rank they respectively hold, from 12,000 down to 20, for all which they draw pay, and which they are obliged to maintain; making a total of three lacks, or 300,000 horse.
The entire compass of the dominions of the Great Mogul is two years' travel for caravans; reaching from Agra, which is in a manner in the heart of all his kingdoms, in various directions, to Candahar, to Soughtare in Bengal, to Cabul, Deccan, Surat, and Tatta in Sinde. His empire is divided into five great kingdoms: Punjab, of which Lahore is the capital; Bengal, of which Sonargham is the chief place; Malwa, of which Ugam [Ougein] is the capital; Deccan, with its capital Bramport [Burhanpoor]; and Guzerat, having Amadavar [Ahmedabad] as its capital. Delhi is reckoned the chief or royal city of the great kingdom of the Mogul in India, where all the ceremonials of his coronation are performed. There are six principal fortresses or castles, Agra, Gualiar, Nerwer, Ratamboor, Hassier, and Roughtaz; in which castles his treasures are securely kept.
In all this great empire there are three arch enemies, which all his power has been unable to subdue; these are, Amberry Chapu in the Deccan, Baadur, the son of Muzafer, who was formerly king of Guzerat, and Rajah Rahana in Malwa. The present Great Mogul has five sons, Sultan Cussero, Sultan Parvis, Sultan Chorem, Sultan Shariar, and Sultan Bath. He has two young daughters, and 300 wives, four of whom, being the chief, are reckoned queens; Padisha Bann, the daughter of Kaime Khan; Nour Mahal, the daughter of Gaih Beg; the third is the daughter of Sein Khan; and the fourth is the daughter of Hakim Hamaun, who was brother to his own father the Padisha Akbar.
The daily expences of the Mogul for his own person, and for feeding his cattle of all sorts, among which are some royal elephants, and all other particular expences, as dress, victuals, and other household charges, come to 50,000 rupees a day; and the daily expences of his women amount to 30,000 rupees.
The custom of the Mogul is to take possession of all the treasure belonging to his nobles when they die, giving among the children what he pleases; but he usually treats them kindly, dividing their father's land among them, and giving great respect to the eldest son, who is generally promoted in time to the full rank of his father. In my time Rajah Gaginat, a great lord or prince among the idolaters, died, when his effects being seized to the king's use, besides jewels, silver, and other valuables, his treasure in gold only amounted to 60 mauns, every maun being 25 pounds weight.
The king has 300 royal elephants on which he himself rides; and when brought before him they appear in great state, having thirty-two men going before them with streamers. The housings or coverings of these elephants are very rich, being either cloth of gold or rich velvet; each royal elephant is followed by his female, and his cub or cubs, usually having four or five young ones as pages, some seven, eight, or nine. These royal elephants, which are the largest and handsomest, eat every day to the value of ten rupees, in sugar, butter, grain, and sugar canes. They are so tame and well managed, that I one day saw the king order one of his sons, named Shariar, a child of seven years old, to go to the elephant and be taken up by his trunk, which was so done, the elephant delivering him to his keeper, who rules him with a hooked iron. When any of these elephants are brought lean before the king, those having charge of them are disgraced unless they have all the better excuse: so that every one strives to bring his in good order, even though he may have to spend of his own funds.
When the Mogul goes out to hunt, his camp is about as much in compass as the city of London, or even more; and I may even say that at least 200,000 people follow him on this occasion, everything being provided as for the use of a large city. The elephant is of all beasts the most sagacious, of which I shall give one instance, which was reported to me as a certainty. An elephant upon a hard journey having been ill-used by his keeper, and finding the fellow asleep one day near him, but out of his reach, and having green canes brought him as food, he took hold of a cane by one end with his trunk, and reached the other end to the keeper's head, which was bare, his turban having fallen off, and twisting the cane among his long hair, drew the fellow towards him, and then slew him.
The king has many dromedaries, which are very swift, and are used for coming with great speed to assault any city, as was once done by this king's father, who assaulted Ahmedabad in Guzerat, when he was supposed to be at Agra; going there with 12,000 men in nine days upon dromedaries, striking such terror into the Guzerats by his sudden arrival, that they were easily reduced. This king has much reduced the numbers of the Rajaput captains, who were idolaters, and has preferred Mahometans, who are weak-spirited men, void of resolution; so that this king is beginning to lose those parts of the Deccan which were conquered by his father. He has a few good captains yet remaining, whom his father highly valued; but they are out of his favour, as they refused to join him in his unnatural rebellion against his own father. For this purpose, being in Attabasse, the regal seat of a kingdom called Porub, he rose in rebellion with 80,000 horse, intending to have taken Agra and got possession of his father's treasure, who was then engaged in conquering the Deccan.
Before the former emperor Akbar departed for the wars in the Deccan, he gave orders to his son Selim, who is now emperor, to go with the forces he commanded against Raja Rahana, the great rebel in Malwa, who coming to a parley with Selim, told him he would get nothing in warring against him but hard blows; and he had much better, during his father's absence in the Deccan, go against Agra, and possess himself of his father's treasure and make himself king, as there was no one able to resist him. Selim followed this advice: but his father getting timely notice, came in all haste to Agra to prevent him, and sent immediately a message to his son, that he might either come and fall at his feet for mercy, or try the chance of a battle. Considering his father's valour, he thought it best to submit to his father, who committed him to prison, but soon released him at the intercession of his mother and sisters. In consequence of this rebellion Selim was disinherited, and his eldest son Cussero was proclaimed heir-apparent; all the younger sons of Akbar having died in the Deccan or in Guzerat.
Akbar died shortly after, having restored Selim to his inheritance while on his death-bed. But Cussero raised troops against his father, and being defeated and taken prisoner, still remains confined in the palace, but blinded, according to report. Since that time he has caused all the adherents of his son to be put to cruel deaths, and has reigned since in quiet; but is ill beloved by the greatest part of his subjects, who are in great fear of him. While I was at his court, I have seen him do many cruel deeds. Five times a week he orders some of his bravest elephants to fight in his presence, during which men are often killed or grievously wounded by the elephants. If any one be sore hurt, though he might very well chance to recover, he causes him to be thrown into the river, saying, "Dispatch him, for as long as he lives he will continually curse me, wherefore it is better that he die presently." He delights to see men executed and torn in pieces by elephants.
In my time, a Patan of good stature came to one of the king's sons, called Sultan Parvis, and petitioned to have some place or pension bestowed on him. Demanding whether he would serve him, the Patan said no, for the prince would not give him such wages as he would ask. The prince asked him how much would satisfy him, on which he said that he would neither serve his father nor him unless he had 1000 rupees a-day, equal to £100 sterling. On the prince asking what were his qualifications that he rated his services so highly, he desired to be tried at all kind of weapons, either on foot or on horseback, and if any one was found to surpass him, he was willing to forfeit his life. The prince having to attend his father, ordered the Patan to be in the way. At night, the king's custom being to drink, the prince told him of the Patan, whom the king commanded to be brought before him. Just at this time a large and very fierce lion was brought in, strongly chained, and led by a dozen men. After questioning the Patan, as to whence he came, his parentage, and what was his valour, that he demanded such wages, the Patan desired the king to put him to a trial: Then, said the king, go and wrestle with that lion. The Patan replied, that this was a wild beast, and it would be no trial of his manhood to make him go against the lion without a weapon. The king however insisted upon it, and the poor fellow was torn in pieces.
Not yet satisfied, but desirous to see more sport, the king sent for ten of his horsemen who were that night on guard, whom he commanded, one after the other, to buffet with the lion. They were all grievously wounded, and three of them lost their lives. The king continued three months in this cruel humour; in which time, merely for his pleasure, many men lost their lives, and many were grievously wounded. Afterwards, and till I came away, twelve or fifteen young lions were made tame, and used to play with each other in the king's presence, frisking about among people's legs, yet doing no harm in a long time.
His custom is every year to be two months out hunting; and when he means to begin his journey, if he comes from his palace on horseback, it is a sign he goes to war; but if on an elephant or in a palanquin, his expedition will only be for hunting.
He cannot abide that any one should have precious stones of value without offering them to him for sale, and it is death for any one to possess such without immediately giving him the refusal. A Banyan, named Herranand, who was his jeweller, had bought a diamond of three meticals weight, for which he paid 100,000 rupees, yet had not done it so covertly but news of it was brought to the king; and some friend of Herrenand presently acquainted him that it had come to the king's knowledge. Upon this the jeweller waited on the king, saying that his majesty had often promised to come to his house, and that now was the proper time, as he had a fine present to make him, having bought a diamond of great weight. The king smiled, and said, "Thy luck has been good." By these and such means the king has engrossed all the finest diamonds, as no one dare purchase one from five carats upwards without his leave. All the lands of the whole monarchy belong to the king, who giveth and taketh at his pleasure. If any one, for instance, has lands at Lahore, and is sent to the wars in the Deccan, his lands at Lahore are given to another, and he receives new lands in or near the Deccan. Those lands which are let, pay to the king two-thirds of the produce; and those which are given away in fee, pay him one-third. The poor riots, or husbandmen who cultivate the land, are very hardly dealt by, and complain much of injustice, but little is given them. At his first coming to the throne he was more severe than now, so that the country is now so full of outlaws and thieves, that one can hardly stir out of doors in any part of his dominions without a guard, as almost the whole people are in rebellion.
There is one great Ragane between Agra and Ahmedabad, who commands an extent of country equal to a good kingdom, maintaining 20,000 horse and 50,000 foot; and as his country is strong and mountainous, all the force of the king has never been able to reduce him. There are many of those rebels all through his dominions, but this is one of the greatest. Many have risen in Candahar, Cabul, Mooltan, Sindy, and the kingdom of Boloch. Bengal, Guzerat, and the Deccan are likewise full of rebels, so that no one can travel in safety for outlaws; all occasioned by the barbarity of the government, and the cruel exactions made upon the husbandmen, which drive them to rebellion.
In the morning, at break of day, the king is at his beads, praying, on his knees, upon a Persian lambskin, having some eight rosaries, or strings of beads, each containing 400. The beads are of rich pearl, ballas rubies, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, aloes wood, eshem, and coral. At the upper end of a large black stone on which he kneels, there are figures graven in stone of the Virgin and Christ, so, turning his face to the west, he repeats 3200 words, according to the number of his beads. After this he shews himself to the people, receiving their salams or good-morrows; a vast multitude resorting every morning to the palace for that purpose. After this he takes two hours sleep, then dines, and passes his time among his women till noon. From that time till three o'clock he shews himself again to the people, looking at sports and pastimes made by men, or at fights of various animals.
At three o'clock, all the nobles then in Agra who are in health, resort to court, when the king comes forth to open audience, sitting in his royal seat, and all the nobles standing before him, each according to his degree. The chiefs of the nobles standing within the red rail, and all the rest without, all being properly placed by the lieutenant-general. The space within the red rail is three steps higher than where the rest stand, and within this red rail I was placed among the chiefest of the land. All the rest are placed in their order by officers, and they likewise are placed within another rail in a spacious place; and without the rail stand all kinds of horsemen and foot-soldiers belonging to his captains, and all other comers. At these rails there are many doors kept by a great number of porters, who have white rods to keep every one in order.
In the middle of the place, right before the king, stands one of the king's sheriffs or judges, together with the chief executioner, who is attended by forty executioners, distinguished from all others by a peculiar kind of quilted caps on their heads, some with hatchets on their shoulders, and others with all sorts of whips, ready to execute the king's commands. The king hears all manner of causes in this place, staying about two hours every day for that purpose; for the kings in India sit in judgment every day, and their sentences are put in execution every Tuesday.
After this he retires to his private chamber for prayer, when four or five kinds of finely-dressed roast meats are set before him, of which he eats till his stomach is satisfied, drinking after this meal one cup of strong drink. He then goes into a private room, into which no one enters but such as are named by himself, where for two years I was one of his attendants; and here he drinks another five cups of strong liquor, being the quantity allowed by his physicians. This done, he chews opium, and being intoxicated, he goes to sleep, and every one departs to his home. He is awakened after two hours to get his supper, at which time he is unable to feed himself, but has it thrust into his mouth by others, which is about one o'clock in the morning; after which he sleeps the rest of the night.
During the time that he drinks his six cups of strong liquor, he says and does many idle things; yet whatsoever he does or says, whether drunk or sober, there are writers who attend him in rotation, who set every thing down in writing; so that not a single incident of his life but is recorded, even his going to the necessary, and when he lies with his wives. The purpose of all this is, that when he dies all his actions and speeches that are worthy of being recorded may be inserted in the chronicle of his reign. One of the king's sons, Sultan Shariar, a boy of seven years old, was called by him one day when I was there, and asked if he chose to accompany him to some place where he was going for amusement. The boy answered he would either go or stay, as it pleased his majesty to command. Because he had not said, that he would go with all his heart along with his majesty, he was sore beaten by the king, yet did not cry. The king therefore asked him, why he cried not? Because, he said, his nurse had told him that it was the greatest possible shame for a prince to cry when beaten; and that ever since he had never cried, and would not though beaten to death. On this his father struck him again, and taking a bodkin, thrust it through his cheek; yet would he not cry, though he bled much. It was much wondered at by all that the king should so treat his own child, and that the boy was so stout-hearted as not to cry. There is great hope that this child will exceed all the rest.
[Footnote 185: Purch. Pilg. I. 206.]
[Footnote 186: He was only viceroy of the projected conquest of the Decan.--E.]
[Footnote 187: These frigates could only be small armed boats, otherwise the English in the barks could not have been found fault with for not fighting.--E.]
[Footnote 188: This not fighting was upbraided to our men by the Indians as much disgrace; but was since recovered with interest, by our sea-fights with the Portuguese.--Purch.]
[Footnote 189: The names of places in Hindustan are often very much corrupted in the early voyages and travels, so as sometimes to be unintelligible. Burhampoor, or Boorhanpoor, in Candeish, is certainly the place indicated in the text, about 260 English miles almost due east from Surat.--E.]
[Footnote 190: Neither Cruly nor Dayta are to be found in our best modern map of Hindostan by Arrowsmith. It may be noticed on this subject, that most places in Hindostan have more than one name; being often known to the natives by one name in their vernacular language, while another name is affixed in Persian, by the Mogul conquerors. The names of places likewise are often changed, at the pleasure of successive possessors; and the continual wars and revolutions have made wonderful changes in the distribution of dominion, since this journey of Hawkins.--E.]
[Footnote 191: She went away along with him for England; but as he died by the way, she afterwards married Mr. Towerson.--Purch.]
[Footnote 192: In a side-note at this place, Purchas says that Mr Alexander Sharpey, their general, came to Agra along with them; which is not mentioned in the text, but will be found in the narrative of Sharpens voyage in the sequel.--E.]
[Footnote 193: On some other occasions in these voyages, the mahmudy is said to be worth about a shilling.--E.]
[Footnote 194: This may appear somewhat in the spirit of prophecy, as the English are now masters of a very large portion of the Mogul empire in Hindostan. This unwieldy empire broke in pieces by its own weight, and the original vices of its constitution; after which its fragments have gradually been conquered by the India Company, whose dominions now include Delhi and Agra, two of its great capitals, and many of its finest provinces--E.]
[Footnote 195: This uncommon expression is not easily explicable, as the ships under Saris appear to have been in the employ of the same company. It probably refers to the partial subscriptions for particular voyages, in use at the first establishment of the Company.--E.]
[Footnote 196: This alludes to the twelfth voyage fitted out by the English East India Company, under the command of Christopher Newport, of which hereafter.--E.]
[Footnote 197: We have formerly seen, from a side-note of Purchas, that Captain Hawkins died before reaching England, and that his Armenian wife afterwards married Mr. Towerson. The journal here breaks off abruptly, and Purchas remarks that he had omitted many advices of the author, respecting forts, Indian factories, &c., not fitting for every eye.--E.]
[Footnote 198: This appears to have been written by Captain Hawkins, as appended to his narrative by Purchas. It is said by the author, that he had partly seen these things, and partly learnt them by information, from the chief officers and overseers of the court.--E]
[Footnote 199: The rupee, or rupia, as it is called in the original, is stated by Purchas, in a side-note, at 2s. each; while, he adds, some call it 2s. 3d. and others 2s. 6d. In fact, the rupee varies materially in its value according to circumstances, which will be fully explained in the sequel.--E.]
[Footnote 200: This name is so completely corrupted as to be inexplicable.--E.]
[Footnote 201: This name is nearly in the same predicament with Soughtare, unless Chunarghur be meant, including Oude, Allahabad, and Bahar in Bengal.--E.]
[Footnote 202: The three last names are inexplicable, unless Ruttampoor be meant for one of them. But this slight sketch of the Mogul empire is so exceedingly imperfect and unsatisfactory, as not to merit any commentary.--E.]
[Footnote 203: His name is nowhere given by Hawkins; but in the journal of Sir Thomas Rae, who went a few years afterwards ambassador to the same king, he is called Jehan-Guire.--E.]
[Footnote 204: We have here omitted a long account of the Mogul treasures in gold, silver, and jewels, and an immense store of rich ornaments in gold, silver, and jewellery, together with the enumeration of horses, elephants, camels, oxen, mules, deer, dogs, lions, ounces, hawks, pigeons, and singing birds, extremely tedious and uninteresting.--E.]
[Footnote 205: Probably an error for the royal city of the kingdom of Porus, in the time of Alexander the Great; in which case Attabasse may be what is now called Attock Benares, on the main stream of the Indus, in the Punjab, or the eastern frontier of Lahore.--E.]
[Footnote 206: Hawkins calls rebels, as the Moguls did, all those that refused subjection; though some of them were perhaps originally independent kings, as this Ragane or Ranna, supposed to have been the true successor of Porus, who was conquered by Alexander. He is now reduced, or rather, as they say, peaceably induced to acknowledge the Mogul, and to pay tribute.--Purch.]
[Footnote 207: Probably meaning the Ballogees, a people on the south-side of the Wulli mountains, bordering to the southward on Candahar.--E.]
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