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THE third William Hawkins laid the foundation of our Indian Empire. He was the eldest son of William Hawkins, the elder brother of Sir John, by his first wife, and therefore first cousin and contemporary of Admiral Sir Richard Hawkins.
He was born at Plymouth about 1565, and educated to a sea life. After making some yoyages to the Straits of Magellan and the West Indies in 1582, on July 21st he sailed with Fenton (who had married Tomasine, sister of Katherine Gonson, Sir John Hawkins's first wife) as Lieutenant-General of his fleet. During this voyage Hawkins and Fenton did not agree, and there were frequent disputes between them.
The following extracts are taken from the journal* of William Hawkins during this voyage, 1582:
"16th May we departed from . . .
"The 2 June we departed out of . . . into which port we came by means of a contrary . . (wind?) there the General . . . (Fenton?) would have left behind him Mr. T . . Blackoller Pilot with Capt. Drake, William (Hawkins?) and the bark Francis; saying that he had better ma. . . (mariners?) with inboard that any of those, and that if needs were . . . put in with Falmouth for as good as they."
"Because," says William Hawkins, "I left Kyrkman. . . me for quarelling I had not from that tyme till my coming . . . any good countenance."
* This manuscript is in the British Museum, and is much damaged by fire. Captain William Hawkins, jun., left three journals: I. Journal of the voyage under Captain Fenton, 1582 (MS., Otho, E. Viii.). II. Journal. in the Hector, in the third E.I.C. voyage, 1606 (MS., Egerton, 2100). III. Relation of occurrences during his residence in India, 1608 (Purchas).
[The Hawkins Family. 143]
It seems evident that Fenton wanted at an early period to abandon the voyage and that most of the officers protested against it.
Letter from John Walker to the Earl of Leicester (A FRAGMENT DAMAGED BY FIRE.)
All the men in the whole fleet, (God be praised!) are in health, only in the Calys 8 or 9 are sick of a fever, but all like to recover. I doubt not but you have heard of the great inconvenience which was like to have happened at Plymouth, by reason that the generall upon . . . set sail, and left Mr Captayne Hawkyns and divers there on shore, and would not stay for them, but by the persuasion of Captain Warde and some one or two others, he cast about, after we had sailed five leagues, and met them at the Land's End in the Francis, which matter was like to have bred great mischief; but that we appeased it in the beginning. But now there is among us as great concord and friendly amity as may be among any people, and all things go well with us, and no doubt but God will bless us, for our people are wonderfully reformed, both in rule of life and religion towards God. In the Edward we have daily morning and evening prayers, besides other special prayers at other times of the day
The 14th June 1582, in latitude 35 deg.
Your hon: Lordship's humble servant and chaplain
"The 16th. June we had sight of the Canaries and the 20th July we fell in with the coast of Guinea and on 10th August anchored off Sierra Leone." Mr. Walker now told William Hawkins that the officers were disputing as to continuing the voyage as first intended, but to make another voyage of their own devising which should be more profitable. After this controversy it was decided to return to Cape de Verde to fetch some wine, which, says William Hawkins, "was only a device to pick and steal."
The bark Francis was wrecked in the river Plate, and the crew were saved and kept among the savages for more than a year.
The two remaining ships -the Calys and the Leicester -entered the port of St. Vincent in Brazil, where on the 24th January, 1583, they fought an action with a Spanish fleet of three ships and 670 men, which had been sent to surprise and take the English vessels. The fight "continued very extreme till noon next day. Their vice-admiral we did sink: there were of our men slain in both ships six or eight and more than 20 hurt. They had of theirs slain above 100 men and many wounded."
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The English then made the best of their way home, and the Leicester arrived at Kingsale on the 14th June, 1583.*
William Hawkins is next mentioned in 1607, and in the meantime he appears to have been in the Levant and to have learnt Turkish, for he could converse in that language.
The following narrative of his residence at the Court of the Great Mogul puts one in mind of the stories told in the Arabian Nights. The wonders and wealth of the Great Mogul; his extreme kindness to Hawkins; how the envy of his enemies, jealous of their king's favours showered upon an Englishman, gradually worked upon the mind of the Mogul, until the emperor listened to their false reports, and was persuaded by them to work the overthrow of Hawkins's project.
On the 16th April, 1607, William Hawkins sailed with a fair wind from Plymouth, bound for the East Indies, as Captain of the Hector, accompanied by Captain Keeling with the Dragon, as Admiral. Hawkins kept a journal of this voyage.
On the 30th April they sighted the Canary Islands, and continued their course for Sierra Leone, where they anchored. From thence directing their course to S.S.W., on October 28th they were nearing a colder climate and the men complaining, a pack of clothes was opened and served out. In the morning of 12th December they put into and anchored in Saldania Bay, where they found Captain Middleton's name, who had been there a few months previously, graven upon a stone. Again setting sail on the 18th February, they next anchored in the bay of St. Augustin, Madagascar, and here took in victuals and water. Afterwards proceeding on their voyage, they touched at Socatora, and arrived at Daman, where on the "28th August I embarked myself;" says William Hawkins, "for Surat in our pinnace." Captain Keeling had kept company with Hawkins until 24th June to the road of Delisa in Socatora, whence he departed in the Dragon. Hawkins had built his pinnace at Socatora, and received a duplicate from the General of the Commission under the Great Seal.
Arrived at the Bar of Surat, being the 24th August, 1608, William Hawkins sent Francis Buck, merchant, to make known to the Governor that the King of England had sent Hawkins as his ambassador to his King, with his letter and present. The Governor replied, that he and what the country
* "Written by me Wm Hawkins this vi.. . 1583 which do not desire of myself to be justi . . do willingly reserve myself to the report of the Companies of the Gallion, and of the other two ships."
[The Hawkins Family. 145]
afforded were at Hawkins's command, and that he should be very welcome if he would vouchsafe to come on shore.
"I went accompanied with my merchants, in the best manner I could, befitting for the honour of my King and country. At my coming on shore, after their barbarous manner I was kindly received, and multitudes of people following me, all desirous to see a new-come people, much nominated, but never came in their parts. Near the Governor's house, word was brought me that he was not well, so I went to the Chief Customer, the only man that seafaring causes belonged unto. After many compliments I told him that my coming was to establish and settle a Factory in Surat, and that I had a letter for his King from His Majesty of England, tending to the same purpose, who is desirous to have league and amity with his King; that his subjects might freely go and come, sell and buy, as the custom of all nations is: and that my ship was laden with the commodities of our land, which by intelligence of former travellers, were vendible for these parts. His answer was that he would dispatch a Foot-man for Cambaya, unto his master; for he could do nothing without his order. So taking my leave I departed.
"In the morning I went to the Governor, and after a Present given him, he entertained me with great outward show of kindness; also promising to dispatch a messenger to Cambaya, and would write in my behalf. In the meantime appointed me to lodge in a Merchant's House, being at that time my Tronch-man, the Capt. of that ship which Sr Edward Michelborne took.
"It was twenty days before the answer came, by reason of the great waters and rains that men could not pass. The messengers brought answer from Mocreb-chan, with licence to land my goods, and buy and sell but for a future trade, and setting of a Factory, he could not do it without the King's commandment, which he thought would be effected, if I would take the pains of two months travel, to deliver my King's letter. And further be wrote unto his Chief Customer, that all I brought should be kept in the Custom House till his brother, Abder Rachim, came, to choose such goods as were fitting for the King. The goods being landed, and kept in the Customer's power, till the coming of the great man, my ship not being able long to stay, I thought it convenient to send for three chests of money, and with that to buy commodities that were vendible at Priaman and Bantam, which the Guzerats carry yearly thither, making great benefit thereof. I began to buy against the will of the merchants, who grumbled and complained of the leave granted me. The great man came and gave me licence to ship it . . . . making what haste I could, and this done I called Master Marton, and all the company, willing
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them to receive him as their commander. This done, and seeing them embark, I bade them farewell.
"The next day, I met some ten or twelve of our men very much frightened, telling me the heaviest news, as I thought that ever came unto me, of the taking of the Barks by a Portugal frigate or two; and all goods and men taken, only they escaped. I demanded in what manner, and whether they did not fight, their answer was 'no,' Mr Marton would not suffer them, for that the Portugals were our friends. I presently sent a letter unto the Capt Maior, that he release my men and goods, for that we were Englishmen, and that our Kings had peace and amity together, etc. At the receipt of my letter the proud rascal braued so much most vilely abusing his Majesty, terming him a King of Fishermen, and of an Island of no import, and a fig for his Commission, scorning to send me any answer.
"It was my chance next day, to meet a captain of the Portugal frigates who was sent by Capt Maior to say that the Governor should send me as prisoner unto him, for that we were Hollanders. I took occasion to speak with him of the abuses offered to the King of England and his subjects, 'and so tell your Captain, that he is a base villain and a traitor to his King in abusing the King of England and that I will maintain it with my sword, if he dare come ashore.' The Mores [Moors?] perceiving I was moved, caused the Portugal to depart; who soon after came and promised me that he would procure the liberty of my men and goods. I entertained him kindly, but before he departed the Town, my men and goods were sent for Goa.
"The great man came on the 3rd Oct. and two days after, the ship set sail; I remaining with Wm Finch merchant who was sick, and not able to stir abroad, and two servants, a cook and my boy. These were the company I had to defend ourselves from so many enemies lurking to destroy us: aiming at me for the stopping of my passage to the Great Mogol. After the departure of the ship I understood that my goods and men were betrayed unto the Portugal by the Jesuit Peniero and Mocreb-chan (the great man's brother) for it was a plot laid to protract time till the Frigates came, and then to dispatch me.
"So long as my ship was at the Bar I was flattered but after her departure I was so misused that it was insufferable. Invironed with enemies, who daily did plot to murder me and cosen me out of my goods. First by Mocreb-chan, taking what he pleased, and leaving what he pleased, giving me such price as his own barbarous conscience afforded, although for three months feeding me with fair promises. All this time Wm Finch was extreme sick, and I could not
[The Hawkins Family. 147]
peep out of doors for fear of the Portuguese who in troups lay lurking to murder me.
"The first plot laid was; I was invited by Hogio Nazam to the freighting of his ship when three gallant fellows came to the tent where I was, and forty Portuguese scattered themselves along the sea shore, ready to give an assault when the word was given. The three gallants, well armed, demanded for the English captain. I rose and told them that I was the man, and perceiving an alteration in them, laid my hand on my weapon; as did also the Captain Mogul and his followers; and if the Portuguese had not been the swifter both they and their shattered crew (in returning to their frigate) had come short home.
"Another time they came to assault me in my house with a Friar to animate and give the soldiers resolution. But I was always wary, having a strong house with good doors. The Portuguese were always coming armed into the city to murder me, which was not the custom for them to come armed as they now did, and the Governor sent them word that if they came armed again, it was at their own peril. At the coming of Mocreb-chan, with a Jesuit named Padre Pineiro, I went to visit him and for a time had many outward shows of him. After his dissembling was past he told me he would not pay for my goods but would return them. I entreated leave to go to Agra to the King, telling him that Wm Finch would remain, to receive either money or wares. After license received, he gave me a letter to the King promising forty horsemen to go with me which he did not accomplish. Then the Father put it into his head that it was not good to let me pass for I would complain of him to the King. And they plotted with my Trenchman and Coachman, to poison or murder me, if one should fail, the other to do it.
"Now find!ng Wm Finch in good health I left the trade of merchandise in his power: giving him order, what he should do in my absence. So I began to take up soldiers to conduct me, being denied of Mocreb-chan. For my better safety, I went to one of Chanchanna his captains, to let me have forty or fifty Horsemen to conduct me to Chanchanna, being then Viceroy of Decan, Resident in Bramport, who did to all in his power that I demanded, giving me valiant Horsemen Patans, a people much feared in those parts: for if I had not done it, I had been overthrown. For the Portuguese of Daman had agreed with a friend, a Raga who was absolute lord of a Province called Cruly, to stay my passage with 200 Horsemen. But I went so well provided that they durst not incounter us. That time I escaped.
"Then at Dayta, another Province, my Coachman being drunk, discovered the treason that he was hired to murder me: he being overheard by some of
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my soldiers, who came and told me how it should be done in the morning following when we began our travel. Upon which notice I called and examined the Coachman before the Captain of the Horsemen; who could not deny, but he would never confess who hired him, although he was very much beaten, cursing his fortune that he could not effect it: so I sent him prisoner to the Governor of Surat. But afterwards by my Broker or Trenchman, I understood that both he and the Coachman were hired by Mocreb-chan, by the Jesuit Father Peniero, the one to poison, and the other to murder me: but the Trenchman received nothing till he had done the deed, which he never meant to do, for in that kind he was always true to me: thus God preserved me.
"This was five days after my departure from Surat which was on the 1St Feb. 1608. Some two days beyond Dayta, the Patans left me to be conducted by another Patan Captain, Governor of that lordship, by whom I was most kindly entertained. His name was Sherchan. Being some time a prisoner of the Portuguese, he was glad to do me any service, for that I was of the nation of their enemies; going in person two days journey with me till he had freed me from the dangerous places; at which time he met with a troup of Outlaws, and took four alive, and slew and hurt eight: the rest escaped. He wrote a letter for me to have his house at Bramport, which was a great courtesy, the Town being full of soldiers : for then began the Wars of the Decans. The 18th of Feb. I came in safety to Bramport, and the next day I went to Court to visit Chanchanna, then the Viceroy of Decan, with a present, who kindly took it, and made me a great Feast: giving me his most kind letter to the King. This done he embraced me, and so we parted. We spoke Turkish."
After remaining a few days to exchange his money, and wait for a caravan, Hawkins took some fresh soldiers, and continued his journey to Agra, "where after much labour, toil, and many dangers, I arrived in safety on the 16th April, 1609. Seeking for a house in a very secret manner, notice was given to the King, the Emperor Jehangir, that I was come, but not to be found. He presently charged both Horsemen and Footmen not to leave before I was found, commanding his Knight Marshall to accompany me with great state to the Court, as an Ambassador of a King: which he did with a great train, making such extraordinary haste that I admired much: for I could scarce obtain time to apparel myself in my best attire. In fine I was brought before the King, with a slight present, having nothing but cloth, and that not esteemed; what I had for the King, Mocreb-chan took from me, wherewith I acquainted his Majesty. After salutation, with a most kind and smiling
[The Hawkins Family. 149]
countenance, he bade me most heartily welcome. Having His Majesty's [King James I.] letter in my hand he called me to come near, stretching down his hand from the Seat Royal, where he sat in great majesty to be seen of the people. Receiving very kindly the letter and viewing a pretty while, both the seal and manner of making it up, he called for an old Jesuit to read it. In the mean space he spake unto me, in the kindest manner, demanding the contents of the letter, which I told him. Upon which presently promising me by God, that all the King had written he would grant. The Jesuit likewise told him the effect of the letter, but saying it was basely penned. My answer was, 'If it please your Majesty these people are our enemies: how can this letter be ill written when my King demandeth favour?' He said it was true. Perceiving that I had the Turkish tongue, which he well understood, he commanded me to follow him into his Presence Chamber, desiring to have further conference with me. The first thing he said was that he understood that Mocreb-chan had not dealt well with me, bidding me be of good cheer for he would remedy all. It seems that his enemies had acquainted the King with his proceedings, for he hath spies upon every nobleman. I answered, that all would go well on my side, so long as his Majesty protected me. Upon which he sent a post for Surat with his command to Mocreb-chan to deal well with the English. I sent my letter to Wm Finch. According to command I had daily conference with the King. Both night and day, his delight was very much to talk with me of the affairs of England and other Countries, also of the West Indies.
"Many weeks passed, and I now in great favour, to the grief of mine enemies, I demanded the King for his Commission with Capitulations for the establishing of our Factory to be in my power. His answer was whether I would remain with him, I replied till shipping came; then my desire was to go home, with the answer of his Majesty's letter."
The King answered that he meant Hawkins to stay longer, while an Ambassador was sent to England. That his remaining would be beneficial to the English nation; and if Hawkins remained he would grant articles for his factory to his heart's desire. Thus daily enticing him that he would serve his own King, and that he, the Emperor, would allow him £3200 a year with increase till he came to 1000 horse.
"So my first should be 400 Horse. For the nobility of India have their titles by the number of their Horses from 40 to 12,000, which pay belongeth to Princes. I trusting his promise, and seeing that it was beneficial to my nation and to myself; and that after six years your Worships would send another man to my place: further perceiving great injuries offered us, as the
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King is so far from the Ports, I did not think it amiss to yield to his request. Then because my name was hard for his pronunciation, he called me English Chan [Inglis Khan], in Persia the title for a Duke."
Hawkins being in the highest favour, "the Jesuits and Portuguese slept not," but by all means sought his overthrow. Also the chief Mahometans were envious of a Christian being near the King. "The Jesuit Peneiro, being with Mocreb-chan, and other Jesuits, did little regard their masses and church matters, for studying how to overthrow my affairs." They sent presents to Mocreb-chan, who advertised the King that suffering the English in his land would be the loss of his seaports, as Surat, Cambaga, etc.; in any case not to entertain Hawkins, for his ancient friends the Portuguese murmured at it, and that he was only laying a great stratagem.
The King replied that he had but one Englishman in his Court, and him they need not fear. At this answer the Portuguese were like "mad dogs." So I told the King what dangers I had passed, and the present danger I was in - my boy Steven Gravoner instantly departing this world, my man Nicholas Ufflet extreme sick, myself beginning to fall down too.
"The King called the Jesuits and told them that if I died they should all rue for it. This past the King was very earnest with me to take a white maiden out of his Palace, who would give her all things necessary, with slaves, and he would promise me that she should turn Christian: and by this means my meats and drinks should be looked into by them, and I should live without fear. I refused if she was a Moor, but if so be there could be a Christian found, I would accept it. At which my speech, I little thought a Christian daughter could be found: So the King called to mind one Mubarique Sha, his daughter, who was a Christian Armenian, and of the race of the most ancient Christians, who was a Captain, and in great favour with Ekbar Padasha, this King's father. This Captain died suddenly and without will, with a mass of money, all robbed by his kindred; leaving the child only a few jewels. I seeing she was of so honest a descent, having passed my word, could not withstand my fortunes. Therefore I took her, and for want of a Minister, before Christian Witnesses, I married her: the priest was my man Nicholas which I thought had been lawful, till I met with a Preacher that came with Sir Henry Middleton, and he showing me the error, I was new married again: for ever after I lived content and without fear, she being willing to go where I went, and live as I lived.
"After these matters ended, news came that the pinnace Ascention was cast away near Surat, upon which I told the King, having his licence and
[The Hawkins Family. 151]
commission for the settling of our trade; which he was willing to do, limiting me a time to return. But the chief Vizier Abdal Hassan, told the King that my going would be the occasion of war and thus harm might happen to a great man who was sent for Goa to buy toys for the King. Upon which the King's pleasure was that I should stay, and sent his Commission to my chief factor at Surat, William Finch. Now the news came that the Ascention was cast away, and her men saved, but they were not supposed to come into Surat. I told the King, who was much discontented with Mocreb-chan my enemy: and gave me commandment for their good usage and for the saving of the goods if possible; to the great joy of Wm Finch and the rest at Surat
"And now these great favours with the King, being continually in his sight, serving him day and night: it went against the hearts of the Mahometans mine enemies to see that a Christian should be so great and near their King, the more because he had promised to make his brother's children Christians. In all this time I could not get my debts of Mocreb-chan, till at length he was sent for up to the King, to answer for many faults and tyrannical injustice to all people in those parts who petitioned the King for justice.
"To make his peace Mocreb-chan sent many presents to the King's sons, and nobles, who laboured in his behalf; but the King sent to attach all his goods, which were in that abundance, the King was two months viewing them, what he thought fitting he kept, and the rest delivered again to Mocreb-chan. Among the things were the presents that he took from me. Now being in this disgrace his friends at length got him clear, but that he pay every man his right, and that no more complaints be made of him if he loved his life. So he paid every one his due; but he put me off, delaying time till his departure, which was shortly after. For the King had restored him his place again.
"I was forced to demand justice of the King but for all the King's command he did as he listed, and do what I could he cut me off 12,500 mahmudis (a gold coin of Gujrat). For the greatest man in the Kingdom was his friend and many others, murmuring to the King, of the English being in his Country for we were at Nabion, that if once we set foot, we should take his Country. The King called me to make answer. I replied that I would answer it with my life that we were not so base a nation as these mine enemies reported.
"There were favourites nearest the King whom I daily visited and kept in with, who spoke in my behalf: and the King on my side commanded that no more wrongs be offered me. I entreated the head Vizier that he would see
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that I did not receive so great a loss, who answered me in a threatening manner; that if I opened my mouth any more, he would make me pay 100,000 mahmudis, which the King had lost in his Customes, by entertaining me, and no man durst adventure by reason of the Portuguese. So I was forced to hold my tongue, for I knew this money was swallowed by both these dogs. Now Mocreb-chan, being ready to depart, coming to take his leave in public; three of the principal merchants of Surat were sent for (and come to the Court about affairs wherein the King or his Vizier had employed them) to be present when Mocreb-chan was taking leave, this being a plot laid by himself; the Portuguese, and the Vizier. For some six days before, a letter came to the King from the Portuguese viceroy, with a present of many rare things. The letter saying how highly the King of Portugal took in ill part the entertaining of the English, etc.: and withal how that a merchant had arrived with a fair Ballace Ruby weighing 350 Ratis, of which stone the pattern was sent. Mocreb-chan together with Padre Pineiro saying that this and many other things he hoped to obtain of the Portuguese, so that the English were disannulled; also that it would redound to great loss if they were allowed to come into his Majesty's country. He called the merchants, who affirmed, that they were like to be all undone because of the English, nor hereafter any toy could come into the country, as the Portuguese were so strong at sea, and would not suffer them to go in and out of their ports. These speeches now and formerly, lucre of the stone, and promises by the Fathers of rare things, were the causes the King overthrew my affairs, giving Mocreb-chan his command to the viceroy to that effect that he would never suffer the English to come any more into his ports.
"I now saw that it booted me not to meddle upon a sudden, my enemies were so many, although they had eaten of me many presents. When I saw my time I petitioned unto the King, who granted my request, and commanded that it was his pleasure that the English should come into his ports. So this time I was again afloat. Of this alteration, at that instant the Jesuit had notice, for nothing passes in the Mogul's Court in secret, but it is written, and writers appointed by turns. So the Jesuit sent the most speedy messenger with his letter to Mocreb-chan and Padre Pineiro. At receipt of which they agreed not to go on to Goa till I was overthrown again. Mocreb-chan writing to the King and Vizier how that it stood not with the King's honour to send him, if he performed not what he promised the Portuguese. Again the King went from his word, esteeming a few toys which the father promised more than his honour. Now I went to Hogio Tolian, the second man in the
[The Hawkins Family. 153]
kingdom, who very kindly went unto the King but without success. Thus was I dallied withall by mine enemies, that all the time I served in Court, I could not get a living that would yield anything; all that I received, was not fully £300, a great part whereof was spent upon charges of men sent to the Lordships. When I made petition unto the King he turned me over to Abdall Hassan; who not only denied my living, but also gave order that I was not to enter within the red rails; a place of honour where all my time I was placed near unto the King, in which place there were but five men in the Kingdom before me. Now perceiving my affairs overthrown I determined with the counsel of those who were to be trusted, either to be well in or well out.
"Upon this I had my petition made ready, which made known unto the King how Abdall Hassan had dealt with me having himself taken what his Majesty gave me, how that my charges were so heavy (being desired by his Majesty to stay in his Court) that I besought his Majesty that he would establish me as formerly, or give me leave to depart. His answer was, to give me leave, commanding his safe conduct to be made me, to pass freely without molestation through his kingdom. As the custom is, I came to do my obeisance, and to take my leave, intreating an answer to my King's letter. Abdall Hassan coming from the King, utterly denied me: saying it was not the custom of so great a Monarch, to write unto a petty Prince. I answered that the King knew more of the mightiness of the King of England, than to be a petty Governor. Well, this was mine answer, together with my leave taken. I went to my house, to get all my goods, using all speed to clear myself out of the country, staying only for Nicholas Ufflet, to come from Lahore. William Finch determined to return overland for England, being past all hope of embarking at Surat: which course I also would have taken but that for some causes I could not travel through Turkey, and especially with a woman. So I was forced to curry favour with the Jesuits to get me a safe conduct from 'the Viceroy, to go to Goa, Portugal, and thence to England. But my wife's kindred when they saw that I was to carry her away, suspecting they would never see her again I was forced to yield that my wife go no further than Goa, where they could visit her, and if at any time I went away, that I leave her that portion that is the custom, to which to prevent mischief I consented. But knowing that if my wife would go with me, all would be of no effect, I got the Jesuits to send for two safe passes. This and much more the Fathers would have done to get me out of the country. In the meantime news came of the return of Mocreb-
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chan with many things for the King, but not the Ballace Ruby, and besides he had not his full content of the Portuguese as he expected. And at this time the Vizier, my enemy, was thrust out of his place and sent to the wars of Decan. Ghiyas was made chief Vizier and his daughter married the King [the celebrated Nur Jehan.) The Vizier's son and myself were great friends, so that this alteration, and, being sure of the ships comming, I sent for jewels fitting for the new Queen, and also for the Vizier and his son.
"Now after they had my gifts they began on all sides to solicit my cause; at which time news came to Agra that three English ships were at Surat. Upon which news the Vizier asked me what I had for his Majesty, and I showed him a ruby ring, who bade me go with him, and that the King was already won. So once more coming before his Greatness, my petition read he granted me the establishment of our Factory and English trade for Surat. But now what followed? A great man, nearest favourite of the king, and the dearest friend that Mocreb-chan and, Abdall Hassan had, interfered, and my business was again overthrown. But for myself if I would remain in his service he would command that what he had allowed me should be given me to my content. Which I declined, unless the English might come unto his ports according to promise, and as for my particular maintenance, my King would not see me want. Again desiring answer of my King's letter, he consulted with his Viziers, and sent me denial.
"So I took my leave and departed from Agra 2. Nov 1611. Being of a thousand thoughts what course to take; for I still had a doubt of being poisoned by the Portuguese for lucre of my goods, and by reason of the war it was dangerous to travel through Decan unto Masulipatan; by land, by reason of the Turks, I could not go; and stay I would not amongst these faithless Infidels. I arrived at Cambaya 30th Dec 1611, where I had certain news of the English ships at Surat, and departing from there 18th Jan I came unto the ships the 26th of the month where I was most kindly received by Sir Henry Middleton. He departed and arrived at Dabull the 16th Feb. in the Red Sea we found three English ships commanded by Capt. John Saris."
On the 8th December, 1612, they arrived at Bantam, where Hawkins left Sir Henry Middleton, who was not returning to England, and went home in the Thomas with Captain Saris, arriving at Saldanha Bay on 21st April, 1613. Here the report of Hawkins to the Company abruptly ends; for he died on the passage home, and was buried in Ireland.*
*Calendar of State Papers, Colonial (East India), 1608- 1616.
[The Hawkins Family. 155]
His young wife, left alone amongst strangers, did not at once return to her own people at Agra. Possessed of one diamond worth £2000, and others to the value of £4000, in the following year she became the wife of Gabriel Towerson,* who had been in the voyage of Captain Saris, and brought home the Hector. In 1617 Captain and Mrs. Towerson went out to India again, and visited Agra, where the lady remained with her relations. Towerson went home, and in 1620 was appointed Principal Factor at the Moluccas, where he was the chief victim in the massacre of Amboyna.
*The Company presented Mrs. Hawkins with a purse of 200 Jacobuses, as a token of their love, upon a general release being given by her.
A BRIEF DISCOURSE OF THE STRENGTH, WEALTH, AND GOVERNMENT,
WITH SOME OF THE CUSTOMS, OF THE GREAT MOGUL.
By WILLIAM HAWKINS.
"As Christian Princes use their degrees by titles, they have their titles by their number of horses, except favoured by the King and honoured with the title of Chan. There are 12,000 Horsemen. Dukes 9,000, Marquises 5,000, Earls 3,000, etc. etc. The yearly income of his Crown Land is fifty Cror of Rupias, every Cror is a hundred Leckes, and every Leck is a hundred thousand Rupiae. The compass of his country is two year's travel with Carravan. His Empire is divided into five great Kingdoms and there are five especial castles. The chief city is Delhi where he is established King. His treasure is an immense amount of gold and silver in coin. 82 1/4 lbs weight of rough diamonds great and small, but none less than 2 1/2 carats. Of Ballace rubies 2,000, pieces of pearl of all sorts 600 lbs, rubies of all sorts 100 lbs, of emeralds 250 lbs, of Eshime, which comes from Cathaya 100 lbs. Of stones of Emen, a red stone 5,000 pieces. Of other sorts as coral, topasses, etc. there is an infinite number. Of the jewels wrought in gold. Of swords of Almaine blades, with hilts and scabbards set with stones of the richest sort 2,200. Of Saddle Drums used for Hawking 500; brooches for their heads, wherein their feathers be put 2,000. Saddles of gold and silver set with stones 1,000. Of Teukes 25; a great lance which instead of colours, are carried, when the King goeth to the wars. Of Quilasoles - state umbrellas - for to shadow him 20. None in his Empire dareth have any of these carried for his shadow but himself. Five chairs of state; three of silver, and two of gold: of others 100 of silver and gold. Of rich glasses 200; vases for wine very rich set with jewels 100;
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500 drinking cups but 50 very rich, made of one piece of Ballace ruby, and other stones. Of chains of Pearl and precious stones, rings with jewels an infinite number which only the keeper knoweth. Of all sorts of Plate of silver wrought 100,000 lbs. of wrought gold plate 50,000 lbs. weight.
"There are 12,000 horses, whereof 4,000 are Persian, 6,000 Turkish, and 2,000 of Kismire. Of elephants there are 12,000, camels 2,000, oxen for carts and other service 10,000, mules 1,000. Of deer for sport 3,000, of dogs for hunting 400. Tame lions 100. Of buffaloes 500. All sorts of hawkes 4,000. Pigeons for sport of flying 10,000, and 4,000 singing birds.
"Of armour of all sorts, at an hour's warning, in readiness to arm 25,000 men.
"His daily expense for his own person, feeding his cattle, apparel, victuals, and house amount to 50,000 Rupias a day. The daily expenses for his women is 30,000 rupias. All this written concerning his treasure, expenses, and monthly pay is at his Court or Castle of Agra; and all his Castles have their several treasure, especially Lahore, which was not mentioned above. The custom of this Mogul Emperor is to take possession of his Noblemens' Treasure when they die, and to bestow on his children what he pleaseth; but commonly he dealeth well with them. Also his custom is, that all his treasures and things are divided into 360 parts so that he daily seeth a certain number; for what is brought to him to-day is not seen. again, till that day twelvemonth. He hath 300 Elephants Royal which he rideth; when they are brought before him they come with great iollitie [jollity] with 30 or 40 men before them with small Stremers. These elephants eat 10 rupias every day in sugar, butter, grain, and sugar canes: they are tame, and so well managed, that I saw with mine eyes, when the King commanded one of his young sons (a child of seven years of age) to go to the Elephant to be taken up by his snout: who did so, delivering him to his keeper that commanded him with his hook: and having done this to the King's son, he afterwards did the like to many other children. When he rideth on Progress of Hunting the compass of his tents is as large as London and more for of all sorts of people that follow the camp, are 200,000 for he is provided as for a city. This King is thought to be the greatest Emperor of the East. As for elephants of his own, and those of his nobles there are 40,000, of which one half are trained for war; they are of all beasts the most understanding; and many strange things are done by them. He hath also infinite numbers of Dromedaries, which come with great speed to give assault to any city, which the King uses to unexpectedly surprise his enemies. Myself at the time I was one of his Courtiers have
[The Hawkins Family. 157
seen many cruel deeds done by him. Five times a week, his Elephants fight before him, during which many men are killed; but if a man be badly hurt that man is cast into the river, the King commanding it, saying: dispatch him, for as long as he liveth he will curse me. Again he delighteth to see men torn in pieces by Elephants. In my time he put his Secretary to death only upon suspicion, with his sword giving him a deadly wound. Likewise it happened to a nobleman and a great friend of mine, that a fair China dish which cost 90 rupias was broken by a mischance being packed amongst other things on a camel, which fell and broke the whole parcel. The nobleman knowing how dearly the King loved this dish sent a trusty servant overland to China to seek for another. Two years after the King remembered the dish but the messenger had not come back. Now when the King heard that the dish was broken, he was in a great rage, commanding the nobleman to be brought before him and almost beaten to death. After two months, he was reasonably recovered; when he was commanded to depart the Court and go to China in search of a such like dish. In my time a Pattan, a man of good stature, proudly demanded 1000 rupias a day for his services of one of the king's sons. The Prince asked him the reason of so great a demand: he replied make trial of me with all sorts of weapons, and if I do not perform as much, let me die for it. At night the King's custom being to drink the Prince seeing his father merry told him of this man and he was brought before him. Now while he was sent for, a wild lion was brought in, a very great one, and strongly chained. The Pattan came in, and the King asked what valour was in him that he should demand so much wages. He asked the King to make trial. That I will, said the King, go wrestle with this lion. The Patton answered that it was a wild beast and to go upon him without weapon, would be no trial of his manhood. The King again
commanded him to wrestle with the lion which he did for some time: and then the lion got the poor man between his claws, and tore his body and the one half of his face, so that this valiant man was killed. The King not contented sent for ten of his horsemen being that night on the watch: who one after another, were to buffet with the lion; all were badly wounded, and it cost three of them their lives. The King continued in this vein, for whose pleasure many men were killed and hurt. Also he cannot abide that any man should have any precious stone of value, for it is death if he know it, not to have the refusal thereof. Every day he weareth a diamond of great price, also a chain of pearls, another of Emeralds, and ballace rubies: and another jewel in his turban, he does not wear the same again for a year: all his things are divided
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into proportions for every day of the year. It is not to be wondered that he is so rich in jewels, gold, and silver when he hath heaped together the treasure and jewels of so many Kings as his forefathers have conquered. Again all the money and jewels of his nobles when they die come unto him. India is rich in silver, for all nations bring coin, and carry away commodities: the coin is buried in India, and every 20 years it is thought comes into the King's power. All the lands are at his disposing, who giveth and taketh at his pleasure.
"The manner of the praying of the Great Mogul is first, in the morning about break of day he is at his Beades which are of precious stones, at the upper end of the Jet is a picture of our Lady and Christ.
"The custom of the Indians is to burn their dead and at their burning many of their wives will and voluntarily burn alive with them because they will content themselves to live no longer than their husbands."
Judith, eldest daughter of Captain William Hawkins, of Plymouth, by his first wife, married Henry Whitacre, of Westbury, co. Wilts, and had issue William and others. "Judith Whitaker widowe . . . tennte . . . etc. of the. heirs and assignes of William Hawkins Esq. deceased." So named in the indenture of composition of the Plymouth Water Act, July 5th, 34th year of Elizabeth (1592).
[The Hawkins Family. 159]
Clare, second daughter of William Hawkins by his first wife, married Robert Michell, July 3rd, 1587, at St. Andrew's, Plymouth.
Mary, third surviving daughter and co-heir of William Hawkins by his second wife, married (at Modbury, in 1601) Thomas Risdon, of Sandwell, near Totnes, a learned Bencher of the Inner Temple in Elizabeth's reign. He is the Thomas Risdon mentioned in the Plymouth Receivers' Accounts (1637-8) as handing over to the Corporation "such writings as concerned Vauters Fee lately bought by the Town of M~ John Hawkyns "-John Hawkins being Sir Richard Hawkins's eldest son, then living at Poole, in Slapton.
Thomas Risdon died at the advanced age of 100 years, in 1641 (?), without children, leaving his estates, which were very considerable, to his nephew, Francis Risdon, of Bableigh.
Thomas Risdon, of Sandwell, was a younger son of Thomas Risdon, of Bableigh, near Bideford, by Wilmot, daughter of Gifford, of Halsbury. The Risdons lived at Bableigh temp. Edward III., and were descended from the Risdons of Risdon, in Gloucestershire.
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Frances, fourth daughter and co-heir of William Hawkins by his second wife, married (about 1608) John Newton, of Crabaton, in Deptford, Deyon (age 36 in 1620). He was son of William Newton, of Somerset (died at Crabaton 1618), and Grace, daughter of Philip Sture, of Bradley, North Huish.
William Newton, son and heir of John and Frances, was aged 11 in 1620; and had six sisters: Maria, aged 10; Grace, 9; Francisca, 8; Judith, 7; Philippa, 6; Elizabeth, 5. The last-named married Walter Fursland; and Elizabeth Fursland, their daughter, in 1660 married Francis Calmady, fourth son and heir of Sir Shilston Calmady. Anna, her sister, died unmarried.
[Book converted for the Web © Paul Welbank, 1997]