A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 09 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 730 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 09.
monastery of Misericiordia was untouched, as were all the church-yards and burying-places; but now, by order of the emperor, all is destroyed, all the graves and sepulchres of the Christians opened, and the bones of the dead taken out by their parents and kindred, to be buried elsewhere in the fields.  Streets have been built on the scites of these churches, monasteries, and burying-grounds, except in some places, where pagodas have been erected by command of the emperor, who has sent heathen priests to occupy them, thinking utterly to root out Christianity from Japan.  There were certain places near Nangasaki where several jesuit fathers and other Christians were martyred, in the reign of Ogosha Same, and where their parents and friends had planted evergreen-trees, and erected altars near each tree, where many hundreds went daily to say their prayers; but now, by command of the emperor, all these trees are cut down, the altars destroyed, and the ground all levelled, it being his firm resolution utterly to root out the remembrance of all matters connected with Christianity.

[Footnote 67:  The Dairo was formerly the sovereign of Japan, uniting the supreme civil and spiritual power, committing the military affairs to a kind of generalissimo, who usurped supreme authority, and reduced the Dairo to be a kind of sovereign pontiff or chief-priest.—­E.]

In the months of November and December, 1618, there were two comets seen all over Japan.  The first, rising in the east, was like a great fiery beam, rent to the southwards, and vanished away in about the space of a month.  The other rose also in the east, like a great blazing star, and went northwards, vanishing quite away within a month near the constellation of Ursa-Major or Charles-waine.  The wizards of Japan have prognosticated great events to arise from these comets, but hitherto nothing material has occurred, excepting the deposition of Frushma-tay, already related.

I am almost ashamed to write you the news which the Spaniards and Portuguese report, though some of them have shewn me letters affirming it to be true, of a bloody cross having been seen in the air in England; and that an English preacher, speaking irreverently of it from the pulpit, was struck dumb:  On which miracle, as they term it the king of England sent to the pope, to have some cardinals and learned men brought to England, as intending that all the people of England should become Roman catholics.  I pray you pardon me for writing of such nonsense, which I do that you may laugh; yet I assure you there are many Spaniards and Portuguese here who firmly believe it.  I know not what more to write you at this time:  But I hope to come to England in the next shipping that comes here; and I trust in God that I may find your worship in good health.

RICHARD COCKS.

SECTION XVI.

Ninth Voyage of the East India Company, in 1612, by Captain Edmund Marlow.[68]

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 09 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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