Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation, by Richard Hakluyt

A letter of directions of the English Ambassadour to M. Richard Forster, appointed the first English Consull at Tripolis in Syria.

Cousin Forster, these few words are for your remembrance when it shall please the Almighty to send you safe arriuall in Tripolis of Syria. When it shall please God to send you thither, you are to certifie our Nation at Tripolis of the certaine day of your landing, to the end they both may haue their house in a readinesse, and also meet you personally at your entrance to accompany you, being your selfe apparelled in the best manner. The next, second, or third day, after your comming, giue it out that you be crazed and not well disposed, by meanes of your trauell at Sea, during which time, you and those there are most wisely to determine in what manner your are to present your selfe to the Beglerbi, Cadi, and other officers: who euery of them are to be presented according to the order accustomed of others formerly in like office: which after the note of Iohn Blanke, late Vice-consull of Tripolis for the French, deliuered you heerewith, is very much: and therefore, if thereof you can saue any thing, I pray you doe it, as I doubt not but you will. They are to giue you there also another Ianizarie according as the French hath: whose outward procedings you are to imitate and follow, in such sort as you be not his inferour, according as those of our Nation heeretofore with him resident can informe you. Touching your demeanour after your placing, your [sic — KTH] are wisely to proceede considering both French and Venetian will haue an enuious eye on you: whome if they perceiue wise and well aduised, they will feare to offer you any iniurie. But if they shall perceiue any insufficiencie in you, they will not omitte any occasion to harme you. They are subtile, malicious, and disembling people, wherefore you must alwayes haue their doings for suspected, and warily walke in all your actions: wherein if you call for Gods diuine assistance, as doth become euery faithfull good Christian, the same shall in such sort direct you as he shall be glorified, your selfe preserued, your doings blessed, and your enemies confounded. Which if contrarywise you omit and forget, your enemies malice shalbe satisfied with your confusion, which God defend, and for his mercies sake keepe you. Touching any outlopers of our nation, which may happen to come thither to traffike, you are not to suffer, but to imprison the chiefe officers, and suffer the rest not to traffike at any time, and together enter in such bonds as you thinke meete, that both they shall not deale in the Grand Signiors dominions, and also not harme, during their voyage, any his subiects shippes, vessels, or whatsoeuer other, but quitely depart out of the same country without any harme doing. And touching those there for the company, your are to defend them according to your priuiledge and such commandements as you haue had hence, in the best order you may. In all and euery your actions, at any hand, beware of rashnesse and anger, after both which repentance followeth. Touching your dealings in their affaires of marchandise, you are not to deale otherwise then in secret and counsell. You are carefully to foresee the charge of the house, that the same may be in all honest measure to the companies profit and your owne health through moderation in diet, and at the best hand, and in due time to prouide things needfull to saue what may be: for he that buyeth euery thing when he needed it, harmeth his owne house, and helpeth the retailer. So as it is, in mine opinion, wisdome to foresee the buying of all things in their natiue soile, in due time, and at the first hand euery yeere, as you are to send the company the particular accounts of the same expenses. Touching your selfe, your [sic — KTH] are to cause to be employed fifty or threescore ducats, videlicet, twenty in Sope, and the rest in Spices, whereof the most part to be Pepper, whereof we spend very much. The Spices are to be prouided by our friend William Barrat, and the Sope buy you at your first arriuall, for that this shippe lading the same commodity will cause it to amount in price. From our mansion Rapamat, the fift of September 1583.

Last updated Friday, March 7, 2014 at 19:52