A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 07 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 785 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 07.

Other authors will write the actions of the new viceroy, Juan de Silva Tello, for he begins his task where I end mine.[22]

[Footnote 22:  Manuel de Faria rightly thought proper to close his work at this period, which was immediately followed by the expulsion of the Portuguese from Malacca and Ceylon, and many other of their Indian possessions; where, except a few inconsiderable factories, they now only hold Goa, Diu, and Macao, and even these possess very little trade, and no political importance.  From their subjection to the crown of Spain, the Dutch, who had thrown off the iron yoke of the Austrian princes of Spain, revenged their own injuries upon the Portuguese in India:  And in the present age, at the distance of 160 years, having themselves fallen under the heavy yoke of the modern French Caesar, they have been stripped by Britain of every foreign possession in Asia, Africa, and America.—­E]


Occurrences in Pegu, Martavan, Pram, Siam, and other places.[23]

We here propose to give some account of the exploits of the black king of Siam, in whose character there was a strange mixture of virtues and vices.  In the year 1544, the king of the Birmans [24] besieged the city of Martavan by sea and land, being the metropolis of the great and flourishing kingdom of that name, which had a revenue of three millions of gold. Chaubainaa was then king of Martavan, and fell from the height of fortune to the depth of misery.  The Birman fleet, on this occasion, consisted of 700 sail, 100 of which were large gallies, in which were 700 Portuguese, commanded by one Juan Cayero, who was reputed a commander of courage and conduct.  After a siege of some months, during which the Birmans lost 12,000 men in five general assaults, Chaubainaa found himself unable to withstand the power of his enemy, being reduced to such extremity that the garrison had already eaten 3000 elephants.  He offered, therefore, to capitulate, but all terms were refused by the enemy; on which he determined to make use of the Portuguese, to whom he had always been just and friendly:  But favours received from a person in prosperity, are forgotten when the benefactor falls into adversity.  He sent therefore one Seixas, a Portuguese in his service, to make an offer to Cayero, if he would receive himself, his family, and treasures, into the four ships which he commanded; that he would give half the treasure to the king of Portugal, to whom he would become vassal, paying such tribute as might be agreed on, being satisfied that he could recover his kingdom with the assistance of 2000 Portuguese troops, whom he proposed to take into his pay.  Cayero consulted with his principal officers on this proposition, and asked Seixas, in their presence, what might be the amount of treasure belonging to the king of Martavan.  Seixas said, that he had not seen the whole, but affirmed that he had seen enough in gold and jewels to load two ships, and as much silver as would load four or five.  Envious of the prodigious fortune that Cayero might make by accepting this offer, the Portuguese officers threatened to delate him to the Birman sovereign, if he consented, and the proposal was accordingly refused.

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