Friday, August 14, 2009
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Contemporary records indicate that the Police Office at this period (1800-1850) was located in the Fort ; the court of the -Senior Magistrate of Police was housed in a building in Forbes Street, and the court of the Second Magistrate in a house in Mazagon. The powers of both Magistrates were limited, and all cases involving sentences of more than six months' imprisonment, or affecting property valued at more than Rs. 50, had to be sent to the Court of Petty Sessions or committed to the Recorder's, subsequently the Supreme Court. The Court of Petty Sessions was composed of the two Magistrates of Police and a Justice of the Peace (the Superintendent-General of Sir J. Mackintosh's draft Regu- lation), and sat every Monday morning at 10 a. m. at the Police Office in the ForT
which is the name familiarly applied to the junction of Grant Road and Duncan Road near the Northbrook Gardens.
Here some years ago one Pilaji Ramji occupied a corner house, in which he used to place an enormous figure of the god Ganesh during the annual Ganpati festival. Large crowds of Hindus used to visit the house to see the idol, and hence gave the name " Pilaji's post " to the locality.
It is quite possible that the name first came into use in the eighteenth century.
colonial administrator of USA and then india!!!
The Earl Cornwallis between 1762 and 1792, was a british armyofficer and colonial administrator. In the united states and Britain, he is best remembered as one of the leading generals in the american war of independance. His 1781 surrender to a combined American-French force at the siege of york town is often incorrectly considered the end of the war; in fact, it continued for a further two years
Monday, June 29, 2009
Bombay single deck Tram
BOMBAY DOUBLE DECKER TRAM
OLDER TYPE -KARACHI
Now known as esplanade mansions is India's oldest surviving cast iron building,fabricated in England ,shipped to India,fabricated on site 1867 ,JOHN WATSON opened this whites only hotel with 130 guest rooms,bar,restaurant,employed English waitresses in ball room.famous guests included Mark twain.The first movie film by the Lumiere brothers in India was shown here ,seen only by white people.Rumours that industrialist TATA was denied entrance into the white only hotel and he retaliated by opening the TAJ hotel in 1903 .IN 1960 the building was sold to private owner and now in bad condition
Sunday, June 28, 2009
RUINS OF THE FORT AND CHURCH WAITING FOR RESTORATION
Baçaim (Vasai): fortified town ruins, town walls (1550-1582) with 10 bastions well preserved (ruins of : Nossa Senhora da Vida (1535), Franciscan Church and Convent of Santo Antonio, Augustinian Church and Convent, Jesuits Church and Convent (1561), Church and Convent of the Dominicans, Church Matriz of St. Jose (1546), Camara, Senado, Chapel of St. John Baptist), fortress or citadel of Sao Sebastiao (1536-1539).
The Jesuit Church is currently (1/2007) under renovation and will soon be the first complete church of Bassein.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
In the 16th century
See also the document on the Northern Suburbs.
In the 16th century Versova was a Portuguese port. Although small and narrow, the harbour was deemed attractive because of the depth, which allowed even very heavily loaded ships access to the docks.
In 1694 Arabs raiders from Muscat sacked the port and massacred all the inhabitants. The island remained in Portuguese possession till 1739, when the Marathas took control of it. Five years later, during the First Maratha War, the British won the island. Although they were forced to return all their mainland conquests through the Treaty of Salbai (1782), the British retained Versova. The island became a training ground for military cadets.Further development took place only in the 1930's, when, along with Bandra and Juhu, Versova was declared a suburban district. Bungalows set in large open spaces were allowed to be built. The Seven Bungalows area of Versova takes its name from these long-vanished dwellings. was a Portuguese port. Although small and narrow, the harbour was deemed attractive because of the depth, which allowed even very heavily loaded ships access to the docks.
In 1694 Arabs raiders from Muscat sacked the port and massacred all the inhabitants. The island remained in Portuguese possession till 1739, when the Marathas took control of it. Five years later, during the First Maratha War, the British won the island. Although they were forced to return all their mainland conquests through the Treaty of Salbai (1782), the British retained Versova. The island became a training ground for military cadets.
Further development took place only in the 1930's, when, along with Bandra and Juhu, Versova was declared a suburban district. Bungalows set in large open spaces were allowed to be built. The Seven Bungalows area of Versova takes its name from these long-vanished dwellings.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Cleland, Portuguese Secretary, Overseer of the OarIn 1736to1707-in the service of the East India Company Bombay
Portuguese Secretary, Overseer of the Oarts,
Collector of the Pension,
arrived in India October 1st, 1729.
— Forrest's Selections, He is said by Allibone to have been the son of Colonel Cleland, i.e., Will Honeycomb of the Spectator's Club.
From records in the Bombay Gazetteer, I find that on October 4th, 1734, John Cleland was required to take the oath of fidelity to the East India Company. Bombay Consultation of November 1st, 1735, has the following : — " The correspondence with the country Governments growing very large and proving a great trouble to the President, and the present Secretary lor the Portuguese affairs being infirm, a proper person is wanted for this branch.
— Mr. John Cleland being well versed in the Portuguese language and other- wise well qualified for the post is accordingly placed iu that office."
In 1736 he was in the service of the East India Company at Bombay, He left Bombay in a destitute condition, some- what hurriedly, and for unknown reasons connected with a quarrel he had with members of Council there.
For many years he wandered in obscurity over the cities of Europe. An infamous book was published in 17 — . It is said he received £10 for it, the publishers making £10,000 by the sale thereof.
For some service, secret or otherwise, he received from Lord Granville a pension of £100 a year. It is stated that " Grose's Travels," 1750-64, in two volumes, which deal mostly with the Bombay Presidency, were written out by him from notes received from Grose. It may interest the reader to learn that John Henry Grose, the Bombay Civilian, was a brother of the celebrated antiquarian Captain Francis Grose, immortalised by Burns.
Sir John Gayer was Governor of Bombay, and assumed charge of office May 17th, 1694, making it over November, 1704
Under Gayer, Waite, and Aislabie, that is from 1694 to 1715, Bombay Governors held the title of General.
During the last three years (1701 to 1704) of his nominal command Gayer was in confinement at Surat.
In 1711 he made his will in Bombay Castle.
He left £5,000 for the benefit of young ministers of the same principles as Kichard Baxter. Non- conformists might do well to inquire what has become of this benefaction.
Sir John Gayer was a nephew of the Sir John*Gayer who was Lord Mayor of London in 1646, a remarkable man, who had travelled a great deal, and, for aught we know, may have been in India.
When he was in Africa a lion passed without injuring him. For this deliver- ance he founded " The Lion Sermon," which is still preached annually in London.
Elihu Yale, Governor of Madras, 1687-92, Educationist.
Yale University is a name authorised by law, and is one of the four principal Universities of the United States. Founded in 1701, it received the name of its benefactor in 1718. It has been the alma mater of a great many distinguished men, among others of Calhoun, Fenimore Cooper, Dwight, Jonathan Edwards, Dana, and Silliman. It has seventy professors and 1,500 students.
It is stated by Alexander Hamilton that Yale hanged his butler for leaving his service without giving him notice ; but I have no doubt this is a skipper's yarn.
We find in the Indian Gazetteer that, being a Welshman, he probably gave the Fort of St. David's its name.
The epitaph on Yale's tombstone states that he was born in America, but he must have had Welsh proclivities, having been buried in Wales. He lies buried in the churchyard of Wrexham, North Wales, ten miles from Hawarden. His tomb in front of the church door is inscribed with the lines : — "Born in Ameiicn, in Europe bri.d. In Africa travelled and in Asia wed; Where long he lived and thrived, ia London dead, Much good, some ill he did, so hope all's even, And that his soul through mercy's gone to heaven."
The tooth of Time had almost effaced the quaint lines when a party of Yalensians visited the church a few years ago, and, seeing the state of things, caused the lettering to be re-cut. The church itself is more than five centuries old, and the curfew is rung by its bell every evening
For 20 years, Yale was part of the British East India Company, and he became the second governor of a settlement at Madras (now Chennai), India, in 1687, after Streynsham Master. He was instrumental in the development of the Government General Hospital, housed at Fort St. George. Yale amassed a fortune in his lifetime, largely through secret contracts with Madras merchant, against the East India Company's directive. By 1692, Elihu Yale's repeated flouting of East India Company regulations and growing embarrassment at his illegal profiteering resulted in his being relieved of the post of governor.
In 1718, Cotton Mather contacted Yale and asked for his help. Mather represented a small institution of learning that had been founded as the Collegiate School of Connecticut in 1701, and it needed money for a new building in New Haven, Connecticut. Yale sent Mather a carton of goods that the school subsequently sold, earning them 560 pounds sterling, a substantial sum in the early 1700s. In gratitude, officials named the new building Yale; eventually the entire institution became Yale College.
Monday, February 23, 2009
following document has been recently unearthed at Welbeck Abbey by the Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts.
Everybody knows " Kidd, the Pirate,"
and he knew us English when we were struggling for existence in Western India.
Times of India, 17ih Sept., 18b7.
Lord Bellamont was Governor of 'New York and Massa- chusetts, and we need not remind the reader that
New York then belonged to En^i^land.
Livingston was presumably the progenitor of that great clan of the name which dominated New York society early in the nineteenth century, and of which Chancellor Livingstone, once Kesident at the Court of France, was the most conspicuous member.
The letter is dated May 12th, 1701. There is no date to the "petition."
Kidd was executed on May 23rd, his trial and condemnation having taken place in the interval. There was short shrift in those days.
The £100,000, though believed in, was never discovered.
£6,472, being the only property of his that Government could lay its hands on, was given by Queen Anne to Greenwich HospitaL William Kidd to Robert Harley.
"May 12th, 1701, Newgate.
— The long imprisonment I have undergone, or the trial I am to undergo, are not so great an affliction to me as my not being able to give your Honourable House of Commons such satisfaction as was expected from me. I hope I have not offended against the Law, but if I have it was the fault of the others who knew better and made me the tool of their ambition and avarice, and who now perhaps think it their interest that I should be removed out of the world. I did not seek the Commission I undertook, but was partly cajoled and partly menaced into it by the Lord Bellamont and one Eobert Livingston of New York, who was the projector, promoter, and chief manager of that design, and who only can give your House a satisfactory account of all the transactions of my owners. He was the man admitted into their closets, and who received their private instructions, which he kept in his own hands, and who encouraged me in their names to do more than I ever did, and to act without regard to my Commission.
I would not exceed my authority and took no other ships than such as had French passes, which I brought with me to New England and relied upon for my justification, but my Lord Bellamont seized upon them together with my cargo, and though he promised to send them into England, yet has he detained part of the effects, kept those passes wholly from me, and has stripped me of all the defence I have to make, which is suck barbarous as well as dishonourable usage, as I hope your honourable House will not let an Englishman suffer, how unfortunate soever his circumstances are, but will intercede with his Majesty to defer my trial until I can have those passes,
and that Livingston may be brought under your examination and confronted by me. " I cannot be so unjust to myself as to plead to an indictment till the French passes are restored to me unless I would be accessory to my own destruction, for though I can make proof that the ships I took had such passes, I am advised by counsel that it will little avail me without producing the passes them- selves.
I was in great consternation when I was before that great assembly, your Honourable House, which, with the dis- advantages of a mean capacity, want of education, and a spirit cramped by long confinement, made me incapable of representing my case, and I have, therefore, presumed to send your Honour- able a short and true statement of it, which I humbly beg your Honourable's perusal and communication of to the House, if you think it worthy their notice
. I humbly crave leave to acquaint your Honour that I was not privy to my being sent for up to your House the second time, nor to the paper lately printed in ray name, both which may justly give offence to the House, but I owe the first to a Coffeeman in the Court of Wards, who designed to make a show of me for his profit, and the latter was done by one Newy, a prisoner in Newgate, to get money for his support at the hazard of my safety. The sense of my present condition (being under condemna- tion), and the thoughts of having been imposed on by such as seek my destruction, thereby to fulfil their ambitious desires, make me incapable of expressing myself in those terms as I ought, therefore do most humbly pray that you will be pleased to represent to the Honourable House of Commons that in my late proceedings in the Indies I have lodged goods and treasure to the value of one hundred thousand pounds,
which I desire the Government may have the benefit of. In order thereto I shall desire no manner of liberty, but to be kept prisoner on board such ship as may be appointed for that purpose, and only give KIDD, THE PIIJATE. the necessary directions, and in case I fail therein I desire no favour but to be forthwith executed according to my sentence.
If your Honourable House will please to order a committee to come to me, I doubt not but to give such satisfaction as may obtain mercy, most humbly submitting to the wisdom of your great assembly."
This petition of William Kidd brings to mind the fact that exactly two hundred years ago (1697) this man's name was in the mouth of every English colonist in Western India.
" The terror of the merchants of Surat and of the villagers of the coast of Malabar," are Macaulay's words.
And no wonder ! His name had been heralded as bearing the mandate of leading members of the English Cabinet to destroy and wipe out from the Indian seas the curse of piracy for ever. And, lo and behold, he turns pirate himself, and on such a grand scale that the maritime and commercial world stand aghast!
His capture of the QuedaJi, merchant, and a dozen others was followed by reprisals of the Mogul Government of Aurungzebe
. And if the old American ballad be true, all this was done with a show of religion. " My name is Captain Kidd, And I sailed, and I sailed. My name is Captain Kidd And so wickedly I did God's laws I did forbid, As I sailed, as I sailed. I had the Bible in my hand, As I sailed, as I sailed, And I buried it iu the sand As I sailed.
" In 1698-9 news leaked out in London ; complaints reached Government. Bellamont was asked to arrest Kidd on his arrival. He returned to Boston in July, 1699, when he was put in gaol, and sent to England in the spring of 1700, His crowning act of boldness in this buccaneering crusade was the capture and plunder of an English ship at Rajapore, in 1697.
I think the daring and audacity of this deed is without a parallel.
Kidd had only escaped from capture himself at the hands of a united Dutch and English squadron which was acting as convoy to the Pilgrim Fleet from the Eed Sea. One would have thought that he would at once, having got out of their clutches, have trimmed his sails to the wind and made for the open sea. Nothing of the kind. He ran in to Rajapore, under the battlements of Jinjheera, boarded an English ship, and with a wild halloo, his motley crew no doubt singing out, "Up and waur them a' Willie," snatched away Bombay property to the value of two lakhs.
This was " to beard the lion in his den," for as I take it the Admiral of the Mogul fleet was " at home." Kidd got off scot-free, which was the best or worst of the business, good for Kidd pro tern.,
and bad for Bombay,
as insurance did not protect her against the King's enemies, of whom Kidd was the biggest. This I say was an act of great daring, for Jinjheera was the strongest droog or seaport in the whole of Western India. Jinjheera had defied the world, at all events defied Sivaji, who was a world in himself, and had battered away at its walls a mile across the water with his big guns for nine successive years, and could not take it.
Kidd is described as living on a competence in Boston, America, when in 1695, in an evil hour, Livingston, a man of some importance, got hold of him and introduced him to Lord Bellamont, Governor of New York and New England. The great store-houses of the pirates in Madagascar had been supplied from New York, and William, King of England, had asked Bellamont to do what he could in suppressing the buccaneering business, which looked as if it would drive the English out of India.
The English Govern- ment, having plenty on its hands, could not commission its ships on this business, but as an alternative Bellamont and four members of the Cabinet, and Kidd, subscribed each £1,000, by which means the Adventure, galley, of thirty guns, with a crew of 200 Europeans, was fitted out. Men could not be got in London, and she was manned in New York. She finally left Plymouth in May, 1696. I can scarcely imagine a more exciting life than the pirate's.
The land-lubber who delved, wove, or span was the meanest of God's creatures. So Kidd swings himself into his hammock to dream of the gold of the Indies. "I'm afloat, I'm afloat On the wild raging sea, My brieve is my bark. And my home is the sea. Up, up with my flag As it floats on the sea. I'm afloat, I'm afloat. And the Eover is free
." Kidd's destination was Madagascar and the mouth of the Red Sea. Being unsuccessful in accomplishing the end he had been sent on, i.e., the destruction of the pirates and their settle- ments, or from whatever other reason, he made for the coast of India, Cochin and Calicut, and throwing off" all trammels, he attacked the ships he had come out to protect, and gave up the role of privateer ! He spared no nationality. All was fish that came to his net, and his appetite grew on what it fed, until gorged with the plunder, as he admits himself, of £100,000 (£250,000 nowadays).
In 1697, when Kidd was at Jinjheera,
itwas the stronghold of Sidi Kassim, the same man who eight years before
(1689) had landed at Mazagon 20,000 men, and a ghastly freight of human heads, driving the English, nolens volens, to the shelter of their castle walls, and leaving the marks of their bullets on its gates, which remain visible to the present day.
Did Kidd know about all this ? Of course he did. He had been years on these waters before he had heard the name of Bellamont, knew every inlet, and doubtless the Eajapore and Bassein Creeks were as familiar to him as the Kyles of Bute.* He must have known also that this piratical act was an insult to Aurungzebe, whose Admiral the Sidi was, and a still greater insult to Bombay and the English, whose goods he had stolen.
Was Kidd ever in Bombay ? asks the reader, I have no doubt he was in some of his former voyages, as he was a veteran sea- dog when Bellamont got hold of him, and though his " logs " have been lost, we are safe in saying that in 1697 he could have made his way to a Punch-house in Dongri Killa, or Moodi Khana, without difficulty.
The place where this exploit of He was born in Greenoc. Kidd's occurred is recorded " off Eajapore." Kajapore is on the mainland, and twenty-five miles south of Bombay, opposite "to whi(^, at about a mile distance, is the fortified Island of Jinjheera. The present Nawab, who is a gentleman, is the ruler of the oldest existing dominion in Western India. The creek, the island, and the surrounding hills make up a picture of rare beauty.
Jinjheera looks like a bit cut out of Valetta. It is about a mile broad, and every inch is packed with houses, which rise tier above tier, until, at an altitude of 200 feet, you reach the Ballakilla, where, oh a miniature maidau, a huge cannon stretches out its lazy length — presiding genius of the place. The sea-walls are not of the " roughTand-tumble " kind which round Khenry, but are well built, and at full tide rise forty feet sheer out of the water.
You can promenade the whole circumference. The great gateway is something to see — slimy with " glaur " and seaweed, it looms high overhead, and gives you an eerie feeling when you think that many a man here took his last look of the world as he stepped from his tony to his funeral pyre. Melrose Abbey, Scott says, is best seen by moonlight. What a weird sight Jinjheera must be then ! But there is no use thinking about it ; though the Dewan was with us, the sun was set, and the guardians refused to break the ancient custom, which is not to allow anyone to enter after sundown.
I dare say Kidd saw as much of this place as he wanted. One look would be enough. " Sir Ralph the Rover sail'd awa)', He scoured the sea for many a day, And now grown rich with plundered store He steers his ur. for Scotland's shore.
" We cannot give the reader a portrait of Sidi Kassim, other- wise Yakut Khan, the man who was here in Kidd's time, but we can introduce him to his tomb.
Here you may sit awhile, or sleep o' night, if you care to rough it on a charpoy, cheek by jowl with his sarcophagus. Here he rests after the hurly-burly of stormy times (1670-1707). Other chiefs also— "Their bones are dust And their swords are rust, And their souls are with the saints, we trust." TJie place Khokari is on the mainland, only a mile or two away, and, on a rising ground on the sea margin, among trees, is of uncommon beauty. There is an Arabic inscription on Yakut's tomb ; they all remind one of the grand tombs at Eosa, above EUora. The Koran is recited every Thursday, and the Nawab sees to it that the tombs are all kept in good repair.
, a small fortified island which guards the Eajpoori Creek, was formerly used for political prisoners, who were executed by being chained to the rocks at low water and the tide allowed to rise gently over them. Tiiis would have been Kidd's punishment — had he been taken. There is a splendid passage in Carlyle's French Bevolution on the state funeral decreed by the French Government to Paul Jones, ending with " six feet in his native kirkyard would have been better," or words like these
. Kidd's death and funeral were public enough, and paid for by the State. He was hung in chains after being executed at Tilbury. These two Scoto-Americans, though the dates of their birth are divided by one hundred years, had much in ccmmon, I mean in their passion for distinguished patrons and in the grief and trouble they found on the ocean wave. The question arises. Is Kidd going to be whitewashed? His latest biographer, Laughton, the eminent naval writer, has these words : " Whatever may have been Kidd's crimes, it is clear that he had not a fair trial, and was found guilty on insufficient evidence." . The East India Company wrote to Surat that they hoped he would be " hung, drawn and quartered."
Had he come into, and been caught in Bombay in 1697
he would have been hanged first and tried afterwards. I may add that he was not the pirate of whom Byron wrote, " He was the mildest-mannered man that ever scuttled ship or cut a throat."
william kidd the pirate
c. 1645 – May 23, 1701
Place of birth: Greenock, Scotland
Place of death: Wapping, England
Allegiance: Kingdom of England
William "Captain" Kidd (c. 1645 – May 23, 1701) was a Scottish sailor remembered for his trial and execution for piracy after returning from a voyage to the Indian Ocean. Some modern historians deem his piratical reputation unjust, as there is evidence that Kidd acted only as a privateer. Kidd's fame springs largely from the sensational circumstances of his questioning before the English Parliament and the ensuing trial. His actual depredations on the high seas, whether piratical or not, were both less destructive and less lucrative than those of many other contemporary pirates and privateers.
Captain William Kidd was either one of the most notorious pirates in history, or one of its most unjustly vilified and prosecuted privateers in an age typified by the rationalization of empire. Despite the legends and fiction surrounding this character, his actual career was punctuated by only a handful of skirmishes followed by a desperate quest to clear his name.
To this day, rumors say he left behind a great treasure.
Since records were not kept of people of common birth in the 1600s, his early years are undocumented. He was born a Scot around 1645. He was the son of a Presbyterian minister. The town he lived in was near the docks, and Kidd soon found the life of a sailor more interesting than that of a minister. There is some information that suggests he was a seaman's apprentice on a pirate ship much earlier than his own more famous pirating.
The first records of his life date from 1689, when he was about 44 years old and a member of a French-English pirate crew that sailed in the Caribbean. Kidd and other members of the crew mutinied, ousted the captain of the ship, and sailed to the English colony of Nevis. There they renamed the ship the "Blessed William." Kidd became captain, either the result of an election of the ship's crew or because of appointment by Christopher Codrington, governor of the island of Nevis. Captain Kidd and the "Blessed William" became part of a small fleet assembled by Codrington to defend Nevis from the French, with whom the English were at war. In either case, he must have been an experienced leader and sailor by that time. As the governor did not want to pay the sailors for their defensive services, he told them they could take their pay from the French. Kidd and his men attacked the French island of Mariegalante, destroyed the only town, and looted the area, gathering for themselves something around 2,000 pounds Sterling.
Recent genealogical research suggests that Kidd was born in Dundee, despite his 'death-row' claim to be from Greenock. He is also said, in the book American folklore and Legend, to be from a family of Cornish gold-miners. According to myth or other stories, his "father was thought to have been a Church of Scotland minister". After the death of his father, when he was five-years old, Kidd moved to the colony of New York. It was here that he befriended many prominent colonial citizens, including three governors.
During the War of the Grand Alliance, on orders from the province of New York, Massachusetts, Kidd captured an enemy privateer, which duty he was commissioned to perform off of the New England coast. Shortly thereafter, Kidd was awarded £150 for successful privateering in the Caribbean. One year later, "Captain" Culliford, a notorious pirate, had stolen Kidd's ship while he was ashore at Antigua in the West Indies. In 1695, William III of England replaced the corrupt governor Benjamin Fletcher, known for accepting bribes of one hundred dollars to allow illegal trading of pirate loot, with Richard Coote, Earl of Bellomont In New York City, Kidd was active in the building of Trinity Church, New York.
Preparing his expedition
On December 11, 1695, Bellomont, who was now governing New York, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire, asked the "trusty and well beloved Captain Kidd" to attack Thomas Tew, John Ireland, Thomas Wake, William Maze, and all others who associated themselves with pirates, along with any enemy French ships. This request preceded the voyage which established Kidd's reputation as a pirate, and marked his image in history and folklore.
Four-fifths of the cost for the venture was paid for by noble lords, who were among the most powerful men in England: the Earl of Orford, The Baron of Romney, the Duke of Shrewsbury and Sir John Somers. Kidd was presented with a letter of marque, signed personally by King William III of England. This letter reserved 10% of the loot for the Crown, and Henry Gilbert's The Book of Pirates suggests that the King may have fronted some of the money for the voyage himself. Kidd and an acquaintance, Colonel Robert Livingston, orchestrated the whole plan and paid for the rest. Kidd had to sell his ship Antigua to raise funds.
The new ship, the Adventure Galley, was well suited to the task of catching pirates; weighing over 284 tons, she was equipped with 34 cannons, oars, and 150 men. The oars were a key advantage as they would enable the Adventure Galley to maneuver in a battle when the winds had calmed and other ships were dead in the water. Kidd took pride in personally selecting the crew, choosing only those he deemed to be the best and most loyal officers.
As the Adventure Galley sailed down the Thames, Kidd unaccountably failed to salute a Navy yacht at Greenwich as custom dictated. The Navy yacht then fired a shot to make him show respect, and Kidd’s crew… responded with an astounding display of impudence — by turning and slapping their backsides in disdain
Because of Kidd's refusal to salute, the Navy vessel's captain retaliated by pressing much of Kidd's crew into naval service, this despite rampant protests. Thus short-handed, Kidd sailed for New York City, capturing a French vessel en route (which was legal under the terms of his commission). To make up for the lack of officers, Kidd picked up replacement crew in New York, the vast majority of whom were known and hardened criminals, some undoubtedly former pirates.
Among Kidd's officers was his quartermaster, Hendrick van der Heul. The quartermaster was considered 'second in command' to the captain in pirate culture of this era. It is not clear, however, if Van der Heul exercised this degree of responsibility because Kidd was nominally a privateer. Van der Heul is also noteworthy because he may have been African or of African-American descent. A contemporary source describes him as a "small black Man." However, the meaning of this term is not certain as, in late seventeenth-century usage, the phrase "black Man" could mean either black-skinned or black-haired. If van der Heul was indeed of African ancestry, this fact would make him the highest ranking black pirate so far identified. Van der Heul went on to become a master's mate on a merchant vessel, and was never convicted of piracy.
Hunting for pirates
In September 1696, Kidd weighed anchor and set course for the Cape of Good Hope. However, more bad luck struck, and a third of his crew soon perished on the Comoros due to an outbreak of cholera. To make matters worse, the brand-new ship developed many leaks, and he failed to find the pirates he expected to encounter off Madagascar. Kidd then sailed to the Strait of Bab-el-Mandeb at the southern entrance of the Red Sea, one of the most popular haunts of rovers on the Pirate Round. Here he again failed to find any pirates. According to Edward Barlow, a captain employed by the British East India Company, Kidd attacked a Mughal convoy here under escort by Barlow's East Indiaman, and was beaten off. If the report is true, this marked Kidd's first foray into piracy.
As it became obvious his ambitious enterprise was failing, he became understandably desperate to cover its costs. But, once again, Kidd failed to attack several ships when given a chance, including a Dutchman and New York privateer. Some of the crew deserted Kidd the next time the Adventure Galley anchored offshore, and those who decided to stay behind made constant open-threats of mutiny.
Howard Pyle's fanciful painting of Kidd and his ship, the Adventure Galley, in New York Harbor.Kidd killed one of his own crewmen on October 30, 1697. While Kidd's gunner, William Moore, was on deck sharpening a chisel, a Dutch ship hove in sight. Moore urged Kidd to attack the Dutchman, an act not only piratical but also certain to anger the Dutch-born King William. Kidd refused, calling Moore a lousy dog. Moore retorted, "If I am a lousy dog, you have made me so; you have brought me to ruin and many more." Kidd snatched up and heaved an ironbound bucket at Moore. Moore fell to the deck with a fractured skull and died the following day.
While seventeenth century English admiralty law allowed captains great leeway in using violence against their crew, outright murder was not permitted. But Kidd seemed unconcerned, later explaining to his surgeon that he had "good friends in England, that will bring me off for that."
Accusations of piracy
Acts of savagery on Kidd’s part were reported by escaped prisoners, who told stories of being hoisted up by the arms and drubbed with a naked cutlass. In truth, many of these acts were committed by his disobedient and mutinous crew. On one occasion, crew members ransacked the trading ship, Mary and tortured several of its crew members while Kidd and the other captain, Thomas Parker conversed privately in Kidd's cabin. When Kidd found out what had happened, he was outraged and forced his men to return most of the stolen property.
Kidd was declared a pirate very early in his voyage by a Royal Navy officer to whom he had promised "thirty men or so". Kidd sailed away during the night to preserve his crew, rather than subject them to Royal Navy impressment.
On January 30, 1698, he raised French colors and took his greatest prize, an Armenian ship, (the 400 ton Quedagh Merchant), which was loaded with satins, muslins, gold, silver, an incredible variety of East Indian merchandise, as well as extremely valuable silks. The captain of the Quedagh Merchant was an Englishman named Wright, who had purchased passes from the French East India Company promising him the protection of the French Crown. After realizing the captain of the taken vessel was an Englishman, Kidd tried to persuade his crew to return the ship to its owners, but they refused, claiming that their prey was perfectly legal as Kidd was commissioned to take French ships, and that an Armenian ship counted as French if it had French passes. In an attempt to maintain his tenuous control over his crew, Kidd relented and kept the prize. When this news reached England, it confirmed Kidd's reputation as a pirate, and various naval commanders were ordered to "pursue and seize the said Kidd and his accomplices" for the "notorious piracies" they had committed.
Kidd kept the French passes of the Quedagh Merchant, as well as the vessel itself. While the passes were at best a dubious defence of his capture, British admiralty and vice-admiralty courts (especially in North America) heretofore had often winked at privateers' excesses into piracy, and Kidd may have been hoping that the passes would provide the legal fig leaf that would allow him to keep the Quedagh Merchant and her cargo. Renaming the seized merchantman the Adventure Prize, he set sail for Madagascar.
On April 1, 1698, Kidd reached Madagascar. Here he found the first pirate of his voyage, Robert Culliford, (the same man who had stolen Kidd’s ship years before) and his crew aboard the Mocha Frigate. Kidd, unaware that the Culliford had only about 20 crew with him, felt ill manned and ill equipped to take the Mocha Frigate until his two prize ships and crews arrived. However, when they did arrive, Kidd's mutinous crew exhibited more of a desire to shoot Kidd than Culliford. Most of Kidd's men now abandoned him for Culliford. Only 13 remained with the Adventure Galley.
Deciding to return home, Kidd left the Adventure Galley behind, ordering her to be burnt because she had become worm-eaten and leaky. By burning the ship, he was able to salvage every last scrap of metal, for example hinges. With the loyal remnant of his crew, he returned to the Carribean aboard the Adventure Prize.
Prior to Kidd returning to New York City, he learned that he was a wanted pirate, and that several English men-of-war were searching for him. Realizing that the Adventure Prize was a marked vessel, he cached it in the Caribbean Sea and continued toward New York aboard a sloop. He is alleged to have deposited some of his treasure on Gardiners Island, hoping to use his knowledge of its location as a bargaining tool.
Bellomont (an investor) was away in Boston, Massachusetts. Aware of the accusations against Kidd, Bellomont was justifiably afraid of being implicated in piracy himself, and knew that presenting Kidd to England in chains was his best chance to save his own neck. He lured Kidd into Boston with false promises of clemency then ordered him arrested on July 6, 1699. Kidd was placed in Stone Prison, spending most of the time in solitary confinement. His wife, Sarah, was also imprisoned. The conditions of Kidd's imprisonment were extremely harsh, and appear to have driven him at least temporarily insane.
He was eventually (after over a year) sent to England for questioning by Parliament. The new Tory ministry hoped to use Kidd as a tool to discredit the Whigs who had backed him, but Kidd refused to name names, naively confident his patrons would reward his loyalty by interceding on his behalf. Finding Kidd politically useless, the Tory leaders sent him to stand trial before the High Court of Admiralty in London for the charges of piracy on high seas and the murder of William Moore. Whilst awaiting trial, Kidd was confined in the infamous Newgate Prison and wrote several letters to King William requesting clemency.
Kidd was tried without representation, and was shocked to learn at his trial that he was charged with murder. He was found guilty on all charges (murder and five counts of piracy). He was hanged on May 23, 1701, at 'Execution Dock', Wapping, in London. During the execution, the hangman's rope broke and Kidd was hanged on the second attempt. His body was gibbeted — left to hang in an iron cage over the River Thames, London — as a warning to future would-be pirates for twenty years.
His associates Richard Barleycorn, Robert Lamley, William Jenkins, Gabriel Loffe, Able Owens, and Hugh Parrot were convicted, but pardoned just prior to hanging at Execution Dock.
Kidd's Whig backers were embarrassed by his trial. Far from rewarding his loyalty, they participated in the effort to convict him by depriving him of the money and information which might have provided him with some legal defense. In particular, the two sets of French passes he had kept were missing at his trial. These passes (and others dated 1700) resurfaced in the early twentieth century, misfiled with other government papers in a London building. These passes call the extent of Kidd's guilt into question. Along with the papers, many goods were brought from the ships and soon auctioned off as "pirate plunder." They were never mentioned in the trial. Nevertheless, none of these items would have prevented his conviction for murdering Moore.
Mythology and legend
The belief that Kidd had left a buried treasure somewhere, contributed considerably to the growth of his legend. This belief made its contributions to literature in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Gold-Bug", Washington Irving's The Devil and Tom Walker , Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island and Nelson DeMille's Plum Island. It also gave impetus to the never-ending treasure hunts conducted on Oak Island in Nova Scotia, in Suffolk County, Long Island in New York where Gardiner's Island is located, Charles Island in Milford, Connecticut; the Thimble Islands in Connecticut and on the island of Grand Manan in the Bay of Fundy.
Captain Kidd did bury a small cache of treasure on Gardiner's Island in a spot known as Cherry Tree Field; however, it was removed by Governor Bellomont and sent to England to be used as evidence against him.
Kidd also visited Block Island around 1699, where he was supplied by Mrs. Mercy (Sands) Raymond, daughter of the mariner James Sands. The story has it that, for her hospitality, Mrs. Raymond was bid to hold out her apron, into which Kidd threw gold and jewels until it was full. After her husband Joshua Raymond died, Mercy moved with her family to northern New London, Connecticut (later Montville), where she bought much land. The Raymond family was thus said to have been "enriched by the apron".
On Grand Manan in the Bay of Fundy, as early as 1875, reference was made to searches on the West side of the island for treasure allegedly buried by Kidd during his time as a Privateer. For nearly 200 years, this remote area of the island has been called "Money Cove".
There is also a mention of Kidd attacking one of the Japanese islands of the Tokara archipelago, south of Kagoshima. It is the most southern island, named Takarajima, which translates literally as "Treasure Island." The legend says that the pirates requested food and cattle from the inhabitants of the island. Their offer was refused and so 23 of the pirates landed and burned the inhabitants alive in a lime cave. Afterwards, Kidd hid his treasure in one of the caves, never coming back for it due to his execution in England.
The Dominican Republic's small Catalina Island, in the Caribbean, is being studied since December 13, 2007, by a team of underwater archeologists from Indiana University, after an Italian tourist announced the discovery of an old wreck at just 10 feet under the clear-blue waters, at a distance of no more than 70 feet off shore. There was no evidence of looting at the site, despite its remains being believed to have been buried since the 17th century. It has proved to be the Quedagh
In Wildwood, New Jersey, the third weekend in May is known as "Captain Kidd's Weekend". During this weekend, children dig up small candy-filled plastic treasure chests buried on the beach. Here, the name 'Kidd' is a pun to the word 'kid', a slang term that has come to mean 'child'.
There is a public house, The Captain Kidd next to the Thames in the Wapping area of London, close to Execution Dock where Kidd was hanged.
Kidd's Beach, a holiday town just southwest of East London on South Africa's east coast is reputedly named for the pirate who is said to have landed there.
Quedagh Merchant Ship Found
For years, people and treasure hunters have tried to locate the Quedagh Merchant ship. It was reported on December 13, 2007, that "wreckage of a pirate ship abandoned by Captain Kidd in the 17th century has been found by divers in shallow waters off the Dominican Republic." The waters in which the ship was found were less than ten feet deep and were only 70 feet off of Catalina Island, just to the south of La Romana on the Dominican coast. The ship is believed to be "the remains of Quedagh Merchant". Charles Beeker, the director of Academic Diving and Underwater Science Programs in IU Bloomington's School of Health, was one of the experts leading the Indiana University diving team. He said that it was "remarkable that the wreck has remained undiscovered all these years given its location", and given that the ship has been the subject of so many prior failed searches.
Richard Zacks "The Pirate Hunter: The True Story of Captain Kidd". "Captain Kidd (1645-1701)"]. "Captain Kidd Ship Found"]. Yahoo News. December 13, 2007. http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20071213/sc_livescience/captainkiddshipfound. Retrieved on 2007-12-13.
Campbell, An Historical Sketch of Robin Hood and Captain Kid (New York, 1853)
Dalton, The Real Captain Kidd: A Vindication (New York, 1911)
Gilbert, H. (1986). The Book of Pirates. London: Bracken Books.
Howell, T. B., ed. (1701), "The Trial of Captain William Kidd and Others, for Piracy and Robbery", A Complete Collection of State Trials and Proceedings for High Treason and Other Crimes and Misdemeanors, XIV, London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown (published 1816), pp. 147–234, http://books.google.com/books?id=JENPSU6dlqoC, retrieved on 2008-08-27
Ritchie, Robert C. (1986). Captain Kidd and the War against the Pirates. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Zacks, Richard (2002). The Pirate Hunter : The True Story of Captain Kidd.
Captain Kidd Pirate's Treasure Buried in the Connecticut River
Types of pirate Pirates :-· Privateers · Buccaneers · Corsairs · Frisian Pirates · Raiders · Barbary pirates · Wōkòu · Vikings · Ushkuiniks · Neretva pirates · Cilician pirates · Slavic pirates
Areas of piracy Piracy in the Caribbean :-· Piracy in the British Virgin Islands · Piracy in the Strait of Malacca · Piracy in Somalia
Port Royal · Tortuga · Saint-Malo · Barbary Coast · Lundy · Lagos · Salé
Famous pirates:- Black Bart · Pier Gerlofs Donia · Blackbeard · Stede Bonnet · Anne Bonny · Calico Jack · Sir Francis Drake · Alexandre Exquemelin · Captain Kidd · Ned Low · Redbeard · Wijerd Jelckama · Roberto Cofresí · Captain Morgan
Pirate ships:- Adventure Galley · Batavia · Fancy · Ganj-i-Sawai · Queen Anne's Revenge · Whydah Galley
Pirate hunters:- Pedro Menéndez de Avilés · Angelo Emo · Richard Avery Hornsby · Robert Maynard · Chaloner Ogle · Pompey
MOGUL AKBAR'S COURT
A PORTRAIT OF RODOLFO AQUAVIVA
. In the year 1583, or about the time
when Mary Queen of Scots lay a prisoner in Eotheringay, five Jesuit priests were murdered at a place called Coucolim, in the Salsette of Goa.
One of them was Rudolph Aquaviva, known in after times as " Akbar's Christian."
The reader will note that there are two Salsettes, the one near Bombay, sometimes called the Salsette of Bassein, and the other the Salsette of Goa, which was the scene of the catastrophe to be narrated.
Aquaviva was a son of the Duke of Atri, a town five miles from the Adriatic and about sixty miles south of Ancona.
The family of the Emperor Hadrian hailed from this quarter, and the guide-books tell us that the town is situated on the summit of a hill, from which is obtained a splendid view of the surrounding country, with the open sea beyond.
The name Aquaviva (" living water ") is said to have been originally derived from the streams which gush down the mountains and which add so much to the beauty of the landscape.
The fortunes of the Atri family seemed to culminate when two of Rodolph's brothers became cardinals, and his uncle, Claude Aquaviva, was chosen the fifth general of the Jesuits.
This last event took place in 1583, and Claude Aquaviva held that great office for a period of thirty-four years, until his death.
D'Alembert says that of all men, during two hundred years, Claude Aquaviva did more than any other to enhance the position and greatness of the Order of Jesus
. The Atri family became extinct in 1760.
The salient points in the life of Rodolph Aquaviva are that he was born in 1550
, joined the Order of Jesus in 1568,
and set sail for Goa in 1578
that he remained tliree years at Akbar's Court
that he returned to Goa in 1583 ;.
When he left Rome in the end of 1577,
in taking leave of Gregory XIII., the Pope observed to him that he would have liked to accompany him,
just as Dr. Wilson exclaimed, when bidding adieu for the last time to Dr. Livingstone, " Had I been ten years younger I would have gone with you to the sources of the Nile."
Travelling was slow in those days.
To Leghorn by sea, then to Genoa — wrecked on the voyage — thence to Lisbon, his mile-stones on the way being Carthagena, Murcea, and Toledo. The journey from Rome to Lisbon took him two months.
On March 24th, 1578
, he put himself on board the Santo Gregoiro. This vessel carried 500 passengers and five priests,
and touched at the Cape. After leaving Mozambique her deck was littered with Kaffirs, purchased there.
Religious instruction was Aquaviva's ruling passion, and he had ample opportunity for its exercise during the voyage.
He arrived in Goa on September 13th, 1578,
after nearly a six months' passage. He remained in Goa until November 17th, 1579,
Their journey thither was full of dangers.
The sea was swarming with pirates,
the land with dacoits.
that when Akbar sent to Goa for some Christians to expound their law, he and two other padres were deputed to hig Court at Fatepur Sikri in 1580 ;
To Damaun and Surat he went by sea, for he, like Linschotten, does not mention Bombay, which evidently had not then scratched its name on Aquaviva's map.
At Surat he joined a caravan, via Indore to Sikri,
seven days before reaching which a cloud of dust announced the arrival of a grand corps, mounted on horses, camels and elephants, which had been sent by Akbar to welcome his guests.
He arrived at Sikri February 27th, 1580, having taken more than three months on the journey from Goa
. He had been forty-three days en route from Surat to Sikri.
It is matter of history beyond all doubt that Akbar gave to the fathers a most hearty welcome, and, short of becoming a Christian himself, did everything he could to make their stay in Fatepur Sikri agreeable.
Was it not a great thing to eat the bread and drink the water — Ganges water — of the Great Mogul ? Doubtless they were pleased with this — who would not be so ? It is human nature.
However, it was not all plain sailing. There was a fly in the amber. Akbar had a long arm that reached from Ahmedabad to Afghanistan, but even he could not be everywhere at the same time. So when he uttered, " I'm off to the wars again," the countenances of his visitors fell, for when he was away the lick-spittles who had salaamed them down to the ground, and who dwelt in the precincts of the palace, reviled the Christian dogs. The children also vented their doggerel — " Nasarani Kelb i ani,"
. Akbar gave permission to his people to embrace Christianity, but he did not wish to proclaim this officially.
There were reasons for this. " If I did this I should be no longer Akbar."
So he might have ruminated. There was a power behind the throne greater than the throne itself. Had this not been so, Akbar might have been the Constantine of Asia.
Aquaviva was not a foolish man, and, if he hoped at all, did not hope overmuch. As early as September 28th, 1580, he wrote these Words, They are letters of fire and proclaim him quite the reverse of Noer's estimate in his Akbar, where he terms Aquaviva " a visionary." His words are these, written six months only after his arrival in Sikri : — " The conversion of the King is very uncertain."
These are not the words of a visionary. The conferences at the Ibadat-khana were attended by Aquaviva, who, according to the testimony of Akbar himself, was agile enough to baffle, nay even to demolish, the arguments of his skilful opponents, Moslem and Hindu.
Which is the true religion ?
Oh, Akbar, find out that if you can, and in the end make a god of thyself, to be worshipped and cast aside as the veriest scum. I have no doubt that long ere this Akbar had his face under control. Under those shaggy eyebrows of his was a religion altogether unexplored by the outside world.
So, when this monk, pale of face, and spent with frequent prayer and fasting, narrated that a child was born in Bethlehem in a stable, and lay in a manger, and that this child was the Son of God, his coun- tenance remained immobile and impassive before the great mystery.
He did not wear his heart on his embroidered sleeve for the ulemas to peck at.
He retired, and in some dim recess of the Palace tried his alchemy on all religions, to weld, if he could, or amalgamate them into one whole,
which should be the creation of his genius. Futile enough and pinchbeck at the best. The reader may wish to know of some of the acts of Aqua- viva at Sikri and Agra.
Kinglake, in Eoihen, says : " The Oriental is not a contriving animal."
So Aquaviva may be credited with some share of the philanthropic enterprises in Sikri and Agra in Akbar's time
. His refusal to accompany Akbar to a sati may have influenced that great man in his endeavours to put a stop to the rite.
He built at Agra what may be regarded as the first Christian Church in India,
Hither came Akbar alone, where he offered prayers and knelt in the fashion of Christians. When Akbar offered him a khilat of many thousand crowns, he politely declined it as contrary to his vow of poverty.
Was he the founder of Medical Missions ? He built a hospital, because " heathen and Moslem in many places are disposed to the acceptance of the Christian religion by the sight of a work of mercy."
Such is the contemporary reason for the building. If Aquaviva was the apostle of water-drinking he would not belie his name.
It might be worth while examining what part, if any, he took in the temperance movement, when Akbar opened a shop in Sikri " where wine was to be sold at a fixed price and only for medicinal purposes."
From all we know he may have been the Father Mathew of those besotted times. If so, Akbar would join heart and hand with him in this movement, from the mortal dread he had of that curse which eventually descended on his family and tore away from him two of his children by delirium tremens.
The effigy of the third, Jehangier, as a royal drinker, cup in hand, is preserved on the coins of the period.
In 1582 Murad was ten and Jehangier fourteen years of age.
We know that Jehangier's apartments were within earshot of Aquaviva's, for the boy, hearing strange noises proceeding from his room, crept unobserved, and witnessed with horror the spectacle of flagellation,
Akbar gently detained Aquaviva a year after the other padres left.
I dare say that it was with a heavy heart that Aquaviva set out for Goa, and as the last view of Agra disap- peared from his vision I doubt not he heaved a sigh.
Did he ever dream of converting Akbar?
I wot not. But if he did, no more noble sentiment could animate the human breast, and it would have been a colossal capture for Christendom, before which the triumphs of Loyola and Xavier might well appear insignificant.
To see tliese three years apparently wasted, to see such a magnificent dream like some superb porcelain vase shattered to pieces, none of us, even the straitest Presbyterian, can refuse him sympathy, and that homage which is always the meed of heroism in the hour of disappointment.
In any case his hour of agony was brief, and I gather from his words that some pre- venient grace came to his aid, and showed him a loftier ideal (to wit, his own martyrdom) than even the conversion of Akbar.
He believed that it had been registered in heaven, that he on earth, by suffering and death, in the footsteps of his Divine Master, should awake to immortality.
And so it came to pass that afcer three years with Akbar, years of sickness of heart, and not without sickness of body, Aquaviva came back to Goa.
We can well believe that he still looked on that palm-fringed isle as the goal of all his aspirations, and that he still trod its white and sandy shore believing that God would work out his destiny, to the ultimate good of man, by giving him his dearest wish — the martyr's crown.
He reached Goa from Agra on May, 1583.
and finally, in that year, when on a missionary tour in Salsette of Goa, he and four others were attacked and brutally murdered by the pagans at a place called Coucolim
The circum- stances which led up to the catastrophe at Coucolim were deplorable.
There were Aquaviva and four young priests, none of them over thirty-five years of age, engaged in the work of planting crosses, and places of Christian worship.
One of their party had killed a cow and polluted a Hindu temple with its blood.
On approaching the village of Coucolim they found the natives in a ferment, wild and exasperated with this untoward occurrence.
That mischief was brewing against the missionaries there seemed little doubt, for, on ap proaching the gate, a naked yogi rushed out with wild gesticu- lations and contortions, and made it all too evident that the lives of the party were in imminent danger.
However, after his disappen ranee, a headman came out and reported that, though the village was divided, a welcome would be given them, which, in a measure, lulled their suspicions.
He was a traitor. Small time elapsed, a calm before the storm, when the sorcerer again made his appearance with dishevelled hair, and cast sand and dirt in the air in his frenzy and paroxysm, as is usual in the East on such occasions
. He was followed by a wild and furious multitude armed with spears, scimitars, clubs and hatchets, and bow and arrow also (very much used then ; an ancient picture represents Aquaviva with an arrow in his breast).
They soon made short work of the strangers and literally hacked them to pieces, casting their dishonoured remains into a deep well.
In 1893 he was canonized by the Pope, to the great joy of all his admirers throughout the Roman Catholic world.
The same fate was meted out to a multitude of Christian men and women at Cawnpore,
and in both cases a monumental memorial was placed on the spot.
Though ten generations intervened between the two massacres, it may be said that in death these martyrs are not divided. All that a man hath will he give for his life,
as we are now (1897) seeing every day
in this season of plague and famine
. Not so, thought Aquaviva. Thrice he could have saved himself. " Fly ! " said an Indian.
He spurned the suggestion. " Take this musket," said Gonzalo.
"lam not sent to kill, but to save alive," was the reply, and when the circle of death was gathering round him, a native Christian offered him his horse,
but all in vain. He did not seek death, but met it with, " Into Thy hands I commend my spirit."
At this supreme moment Divine grace came to his aid and showed him a loftier ideal than even the conversion of Akbar. And so, with steady gait and un- faltering tongue, he found himself on the borderland, face to face with his destiny at Coucolim — not craven or despairing, but full of Divine hope, radiant if you will, at the joyful issue out of all his troubles.
The event took place on July 25th, 1583
. I gather from the narrative that it was no surprise to Aquaviva, and that his hour of agony was short. Agony ! Yes, as far as flesh and blood had the making of it ; of ecstasy rather, in following in the steps of his Divine Master. Hints are dropped here and there in his letters and conversations from his earliest years that some measure of grace, vouchsafed on rare occasions to the favourites of God (such was then Presbyterian and Papal belief), had been granted to him, so that the blow when it came was not unexpected.
Goa, we may remind our readers, was then in the acme of its glory, though the Church of Bom Jesus was not yet built.
It was the Goa of Linschotten's time (1583), and her people were a proud, licentious race, quick to resent an injury and to punish the doers of it.
What the vengeance was I do not know, or how it was executed, for on this point history is silent. I gather from the following facts, and I exclude the miraculous, that it was short, sharp and decisive.
" In retaliation for these murders the Viceroy sent Yanez de Figueyrodo, the commander of Eachol, to punish the people of Salsette, which he effected in a most ruthless manner. He made a promiscuous slaughter of the inhabitants, destroyed their dwellings, and levelled to the ground every temple in the neighbourhood. Having discovered the leaders, amongst those who had killed the Friars, he made such horrible examples of them that many of the natives fled in terror from the island. After this, Figueyrodo erected a number of new churches and set up crosses on the summits of all the hills around."
. Two years after the event, a little chapel, under the name of Notre Dame des Martyrs, was built over the well, and a monu- mental cross adjacent to it. Within one year after the martyr- dom, 1,500 pagans of Salsette were baptised.
In '1586-87 five villages requested baptism. During the celebration of mass at Coucolim, a troop of zemindars prostrated themselves before the altar.
Salsette counted in, 35,508 converts.
Verily, in this instance, the blood of the martyrs was the seed of the Church, though it may have come roughly about. Many legends have gathered round the martyrs of Salsette. . Ex uno disce omnes. One of the priests had made his escape, and had totally disappeared when the pagans let a bloodhound out ofcthe leash after him. It tracked the fugitive to his doom. Tlie owner of that dog came to no good, and appropriately died a howliDg maniac.
In the same manner, the descend- ants of the man who pushed the drowning women under the Sol way have been pointed out web-footed, and crawling crab-like on the ground.
The idea that judgment, following in the wake of crime, should be accompanied by some of its con- comitant features stretches, you see, from the Balla Ghaut to the Blednoch. The one thing Aquaviva did not bring away with him from Sikri was the doctrine of toleration — had he done so it might have saved his life.
The Ibadat-khana was not the only place where Akbar exhibited toleration;
he put it in practice throughout his immense dominions.
His Minister, Todar Mall, was a Hindu;
he adopted the Parsee Calendar;
he put his son Murad under a Christian tutor.
Had Aquaviva become the apostle of toleration, and carried the authorities with him, he might have saved the Portuguese dominion in Asia.
This was not to be. No doubt the methods of the Church seem to us hard and unintelligible ; but they were the methods of the age.
The belief was almost universal that you could compel men by force and fear to worship God as you dictated. Ancient faiths had been rooted out, and nations compelled to accept new beliefs, by what the Bible emphatically calls " the power of the sword." It seems so strange.
Albuquerque versus the Moslem was the incarnation of this doctrine
. It was not cofined to Spanish or Portuguese;
Scotland burned Patrick Hamilton.
England, by turns, Romanist or Protestant, showed the same intolerant spirit.
Whoever had the upper hand showed no mercy.
Church or stake — there's your choice.
Hence you read on Goa tombstones of one,
" Captain of this fortress, who destroyed the pagodas of these territories, 1577."
Hence, the killing of the sacred cow, and the pollution of the holy places of the Hindus with its entrails. These were among the meritorious works of the time. From all such deeds I am bound to say, as far as I know the records, that Aquaviva was totally free. The slaughter of the cow, and the desecration of a holy place with its blood was indefensible,
and I am glad Aquaviva had no hand in it. Would Loyola have done it ? Or Xavier ? I trow not.
A greater than he had said : " Behold, I send you forth as sheep among wolves. Be ye therefore wise as serpents and harmless as doves."
Pierre Berna that morning had evidently not read with profit these words of the Great Commission, and had founded his act upon the Commentaries of Albuquerque, and not on the words of Jesus.
That Bombay did not burn mosques or pagodas was owing to her being one hundred years nearer our time in the march of civilisation ;
and that the men here who had the grasp of affairs at the time, notably Aungier, having imbibed in England the principle of free inquiry and private judgment,
. upheld that principle in the interest of humanity, and put an end to all interference with religious beliefs,
" as long as they did not sap the foundation of morality or involve a violation of the eternal and immutable Laws of Eight." When the question of the beatification of Rodolph came before his uncle, the General of the Jesuits, he felt that he was too near a relation to give an impartial decision. The great Bellarmine was appealed to, and affirmed that the martyrs of Salsette were worthy of canonisation. At a congregation held in 1741, under Benedict XLV., to settle this business. Cardinal Bellaga uttered a bon mot, or something like it. " If two miracles," said he, "are necessary for beatification, we have already one in the unanimous vote of so numerous a body of Cardinals." This, however, was not enough, for the matter trailed its weary length over another century and a half, until Pope Leo XIII. enrolled him among the Saints. By this time the outside world, except his co-religionists, had completely for- gotten, after the lapse of three centuries, that there was an Aquaviva of Salsette.
I dare say the impression left by this holy man on Akbar was never effaced. He called him an angel, and so he was, for doing good and hating ill is angel's work.
Akbar wore the image of the Virgin next his heart, if I am not mistaken.
You may still see the remnants of a sketch in fresco portraying the Annunciation on the walls of Sikri.
When the Emperor heard of his death he was overwhelmed with grief: "Would that I had not let him go!" And years after . (it was in 1695), when Jerome Xavier, the nephew of the Apostle, visited Agra, Akbar showed him the Bible, and the picture of the Madonna, which Aquaviva had presented to him, and the Agnus Dei which he wore from his neck.
Is it only a legend or echo of the martyr's labours that Mary Mackany was the Christian wife of Akbar?
And that the last words of Shah Jahan's daughter were, a hundred years later, " Je ne veux sur ma tombe aucun monument. L'herbe modeste recouvrira mieux les restes de I'ephemere Jehanara, la pauvre servante des disciples du Christ, la fille de I'Empereur Shah Jahan " ? -
Tomb Of Jehanara.
translation-[I do not want on my gravestone monument no. The grass cover more modest remains of I'ephemere Jehanara, the poor servant of Christ's disciples, the fille of I'Empereur Shah Jahan?]
The bare facts of Aquaviva's career, his heroism, his devotion, his self-denial and his early and violent death, suffice to constitute an exalted character, and have long attracted and fascinated the attention of that great body of religionists to which he belonged, and Aquaviva's story may still be read with profit by every branch of the Christian Church. He is one of the few Europeans who met and conversed intimately with Akbar, and left a record of the same. Every scrap of his writing, every word of his M'hich has been handed down, his form, his face, his features, his habits, his prayers, his mortifications and his flagellations, are recorded and brought before us. Tradition, legend, and even miracle have gathered round his bones and clothed his august personality, even as the moss clothes the mighty oak, or other monarch of the forest, until the admiration of his panegyrists burst forth into loud acclaim — Aquaviva ! Living Water ! Springing up into ever- lasting life !