A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 02 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 778 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 02.
but as the ships did not bring money for their purchases, and as the goods they brought were in small request, and they could not therefore succeed in making purchases, the commander resolved to return to Cananore, where the rajah had expressed so much good will for the Portuguese, and where he bartered his merchandize for spices at a good profit.  He here left three persons, with the ships factor and a clerk, because the rajah had advanced money on credit for the spices, that they might not appear to have cheated the rajah.  Yet after all, the ships had to come away only half loaded, because they had not taken out money for their purchases, and their goods were in no request.  The conclusion from this is evident, that the Indians have no demand for our goods, and that money alone is especially desired by them, and of which they are in great need.

It has been reported since, that these kings of the Indies gave as much merchandize to our admiral without price as would load four ships, out of fear of the Christians; especially the king of Calicut, who has been told by his soothsayers to beware of the ensuing year, as the stars threaten him with a great slaughter of his men by the Christians, and that his kingdom even would be deserted, owing to dread of that people.  We have this intelligence from three men who escaped from the battle at Araschorea with the barbarians.  The same thing is reported by a native of Bergamo, who had dwelt twenty-five years at Calicut, which is likewise confirmed by a native of Valentia, who had sojourned there six years.  In the meantime the king of Calicut fitted out a large fleet to attack our ships at Cananore; but they immediately sought for safety by setting sail.  On this account the king of Portugal has ordered eight or ten ships of burthen to be fitted out by next January, of which seven are already built.  Two ships have been sent out this summer, one of which is of 700 tons burthen, and the other of 500.  There is a third in the port of Lisbon of 450 tons; two others at Madeira, one of 350, and the other of 230 tons; another is fitting out at Setubal carrying above 160 tons.  Besides these six, a caravel is to be added which lately came from the island of Chio, all of which are entirely at the royal charges; and two are to be fitted out by the king for certain merchants, one of 450 tons and the other of 350.  It is agreed between these merchants and the king, that the king shall be at the sole expence of the voyage and payment of the sailors, as in his service.  That the merchants shall carry out as much money as may suffice for all their purchases; and on the return of the ships half of the goods shall belong to the king, and the merchants shall be at liberty to sell the other half for their own behoof.  It appears evident to us that this mode of conducting business will be greatly more to the benefit of the merchants than going entirely at their own risk, as has been done hitherto; so that the king will probably find abundance of people willing to trade to India on these conditions.  We have accordingly a share in these two ships; but of the event, God alone can judge.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 02 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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