The principal navigations, voyages, traffiques, and discoveries of the English nation, by Richard Hakluyt

The Ambassage of M. Edmund Hogan, one of the sworne Esquires of her Maiesties person, from her Highnesse to Mully Abdelmelech Emperour of Marocco, and king of Fes and Sus: in the yeere 1577, written by himselfe.

I Edmund Hogan being appointed Ambassadour from the Queenes Maiestie to the aboue named Emperour and King Mully Abdelmelech, departed with my company and seruants from London the two and twentie day of April 1577, being imbarked in the good ship called the Gallion of London, and arriued in Azafi a port of Barbarie the one and twentie day of May next following. Immediatly I sent Leonell Edgerton a shoare with my letters directed to Iohn Williams and Iohn Bampton, who dispatched a Trottero to Marocco to knowe the kings pleasure for my repaire to the Court, which letters came to their hands on the Thursday night.

They with all speede gaue the king understanding of it, who being glad thereof speeded the next day certaine Captaines with souldiers and tents, with other prouision to Azafi, so that vpon Whitsunday at night the said Captaines with Iohn Bambton, Robert Washborne, and Robert Lion, and the kings officers came late to Azafi.

In the meane time I remained a boord, and caused some of the goods to be discharged for lightning of the shippe, and I wrote in my letter that I would not lande, till I knewe the Kings pleasure.

The 22 day being Saturday, the Make-speede arriued in the roade about two of the clocke in the afternoone.

The 27 day, being Whitsunday, came aboord the Gallion Iohn Bampton, and others, giuing me to vnderstande how much the King reioyced of my safe arriuall, comming from the Queenes Maiestie, and how that for my safe conduct to the Court he had sent foure Captaines and an hundred souldiers well appointed, with a horse furnished which he vsed himselfe to ride on with all other furniture accordingly: they wished mee also to come on lande in the best order I could, as well for my selfe as my men, which I did, hauing to the number of tenne men, whereof three were trumpetters.

The ships being foure appointed themselues in the best order they could for the best shew, and shot off all their ordinance to the value of twentie Markes in powder.

At my comming a shoare, I found all the souldiers well appointed on horsebacke, the Captaines and the Gouernour of the towne standing as neere the water side as they could, with a Iennet of the kings, and receiued mee from the boate declaring how glad his maiestie was of my safe arriuall, comming from the Queenes Maiestie my Mistresse, and that hee had sent them to attend vpon me, it being his pleasure that I should tarie there on shore fiue or sixe dayes for my refreshing.

So being mounted vpon the Iennet, they conducted mee through the Towne into a faire fielde vpon the Sea-side where was a tent prouided for mee, and all the ground spread with Turkie carpets, and the Castle discharged a peale of ordinance, and all things necessarie were brought into my tent, where I both tooke my table and lodging, and had other conuenient tents for my seruants.

The souldiers enuironed the tents, and watched about vs day and night as long as I lay there, although I sought my speedier dispatch.

On the Wednesday towards night, I tooke my horse and traueiled ten miles to the first place of water that we could finde, [Marginal Note: In Barbarie they haue no Innes but they lodge in open fieldes where they can find water.] and there pitched our tents till the next morning, and so traueiled till ten of the clocke, and then pitched our tents till foure, and so traueiled as long as day light would suffer about 26 miles that day.

The next day being Friday I traueiled in like order but eight and twentie miles at the most, and by a Riuer being about sixe miles within sight of the Citie of Marocco we pitched our tents.

[Sidenote: The singular humanitie of the king to our Ambassadour.] Immediatly after came all our English marchants, and the French on horsebacke to meete me, and before night there came an Alcayde from the king with fiftie men, and diuers mules laden with victuall and banket, for my supper, declaring vnto me how glad the king shewed himselfe to heare of the Queenes Maiestie, and that his pleasere was I should be receiued into his country as neuer any Christian the like: and desired to knowe what time the next day I would come into his citie, because he would that all the Christians as also his nobilitie should meete me, and willed Iohn Bampton to be with him early in the morning, which he did.

About seuen of the clocke being accompanied with the French and English marchants, and a great number of souldiers, I passed towards the citie, and by that time I had traueiled 2 miles, there met me all the Christians of the Spaniards and Portugals to receiue me, which I knowe was more by the kings commandement then of any good wils of themselues: for some of them although they speake me faire hung downe their heads like dogs, and especially the Portugales, and I countenanced them accordingly. [Marginal Note: The Spaniards and Portugales were commanded by the king in paine of death, to meete the English Ambassadour.]

So I passed on till I came within two English miles of the Citie, and then Iohn Bampton returned, shewing me that the king was so glad of my comming, that hee could not deuise to doe too much, to shewe the good will that hee did owe to the Queenes Maiestie, and her Realme.

His counsellors met me without the gates, and at the entrie of the gates, his footmen and guard were placed on both sides of my horse, and so brought me to the kings palace.

The king sate in his chaire with his Counsell about him, as well the Moores as the Elchies, and according to his order giuen vnto me before, I there declared my message in Spanish, and made deliuerie of the Queenes Maiesties letters, and all that I spake at that present in Spanish, hee caused one of his Elchies to declare the same to the Moores present, in the Larbe tongue.

Which done, he answered me againe in Spanish, yeelding to the Queenes Maiestie great thankes, and offering himselfe and his countrey to bee at her Graces commaundement, and then commaunded certaine of his Counsellers to conduct mee to my lodging, not being farre from the Court.

The house was faire after the fashion of that countrey, being daily well furnished with al kind of victuall at the kings charge.

The same night he sent for mee to the Court, and I had conference with him about the space of two houres, where I throughly declared the charge committed vnto mee from her Maiestie, finding him conformable, willing to pleasure and not to vrge her Maiestie with any demaundes, more then conueniently shee might willingly consent vnto, hee knowing that out of his countrey the Realme of England might be better serued with lackes, then bee in comparison from vs.

[Sidenote: The king of Spaine sought to disgrace the Queene and her Ambassadour.] Further he gaue me to vnderstand, that the king of Spaine had sent vnto him for a licence, that an Ambassadour of his might come into his countrey, and had made great meanes that if the Queenes maiesty of England sent any vnto him, that he would not giue him any credit or intertainment, albeit (said he) I know what the king of Spaine is, and what the Queene of England and her Realme is: for I neither like of him nor of his religion, being so gouerned by the Inquisition that he can doe nothing of himselfe.

Therefore when he commeth vpon the licence which I haue granted, he shall well see how litle account I will make of him and Spaine, and how greatly will extoll you for the Queenes maiestie of England.

He shall not come to my presence as you haue done, and shall dayly: for I minde to accept of you as my companion and one of my house, whereas he shall attend twentie dayes after he hath done his message.

After the end of this speech I deliuered Sir Thomas Greshams letters, when as he tooke me by the hand, and led me downe a long court to a palace where there ranne a faire fountaine of water, and there sitting himselfe in a chaire, he commanded me to sit downe in another, and there called for such simple Musicians as he had.

[Sidenote: The king of Barbarie sent into England for Musicians.] Then I presented him with a great base Lute, which he most thankfully accepted, and then he was desirous to heare of the Musicians, and I tolde him that there was great care had to prouide them, and that I did not doubt but vpon my returne they should come with the first ship. He is willing to giue them good intertainment with prouision of victuall, and to let them liue according to their law and conscience wherein he vrgeth none to the contrary.

I finde him to be one that liueth greatly in the feare of God, being well exercised in the Scriptures, as well in the olde Testament as also in the New, and he beareth a greater affection to our Nation then to others because of our religion, which forbiddeth worship of Idols, and the Moores called him the Christian king.

[Sidenote: A rich gift bestowed upon our Ambassadour.] The same night being the first of Iune, I continued with him till twelue of the clocke, and he seemed to haue so good liking of me, that he tooke from his girdle a short dagger being set with 200 stones, rubies and turkies, and did bestow it vpon me, and so I being conducted returned to my lodging for that time.

The next day because he knew it to be Sunday and our Sabbath day he did let me rest. But on the Munday in the afternoone he sent for me, and I had conference with him againe, and musicke.

Likewise on the Tuesday by three of the clocke he sent for me into his garden, finding him layd vpon a silke bed complayning of a sore leg: yet after long conference he walked into another Orchard, where as hauing a faire banketting-house and a great water, and a new gallie in it, he went aboord the gallie and tooke me with him, and passed the space of two or three houres, shewing the great experience he had in Gallies, wherein (as he said) he had excercised himselfe eighteene yeeres in his youth.

After supper he shewed me his horses and other commodities that he had about his house, and since that night I haue not seene him, for that he hath kept in with his sore legge, but he hath sent to me daily.

The 13 of Iune at sixe of the clocke at night I had againe audience of the king, and I continued with him till midnight, hauing debated as well for the Queenes commission as for the well dealing, with her marchants for their traffike here in these parts, saying, he would do much more for the Queenes maiesty and the Realme offering that all English ships with her subiects may with good securitie enter into his ports and dominions as well in trade of marchandise, as for victuall and water, as also in time of warre with any her enemies to bring in prises and to make sales, as occasion should serue, or else to depart againe with them at their pleasure.

Likewise for all English ships that shall passe along his coast of Barbarie, and thorow the straites into the Leuant seas, that he would graunt safe conduct that the said ships and marchants with their goods might passe into the Leuant seas, and so to the Turks dominions, and the king of Argiers, as his owne, and that he would write to the Turke and to the king of Argier his letters for the well vsing of our ships and goods.

Also that hereafter no Englishmen that by any meanes be taken captiues, shall be solde within any of his dominions: whereupon I declared that the Queenes maiesty accepting of these his offers was pleased to confirme the intercourse and trade of our marchants within this his countrey, as also to pleasure him with such commodities as he should haue need of, to furnish the necessities and wants of his countrey in trade of marchandise, so as he required nothing contrarie to her honour and law, and the breach of league with the Christian princes her neighbours. [Sidenote: A good prouiso.]

The same night I presented the king with the case of combes, and desired his maiestie to haue special regard that the ships might be laden backe againe, for that I found litle store of saltpeter in readinesse in Iohn Bamptons hands. He answered me that I should haue all the assistance therein that he could, but that in Sus he thought to haue some store in his house there, as also that the Mountayners had made much in a readinesse: I requested that he would send downe, which he promised to doe.

The eighteene day I was with him againe and so continued there till night, and he shewed me his house with pastime in ducking with water-Spaniels, and baiting buls with his English dogges.

At this time I moued him againe for the sending downe to Sus, which he granted to doe, and the 24. day there departed Alcayde Mammie, with Lionell Edgerton, and Rowland Guy to Sus, and caried with them for our accompts and his company the kings letters to his brother Muly Hammet, and Alcayde Shauan, and the Viceroy.

The 23. day the king sent me out of Marocco to his garden called Shersbonare, with his gard, and Alcayde Mamoute, and the 24. at night I came to the court to see a Morris dance, and a play of his Elchies. He promised me audience the next day being Tuesday, but he put it off till Thursday: and the Thursday at night I was sent for to the king after supper, and then he sent Alcayde Rodwan, and Alcayde Gowry to conferre with me, but after a little talke I desired to be brought to the King for my dispatch. And being brought to him, I preferred two bils of Iohn Bamptons which he had made for prouision of Salt-peter: also two bils for the quiet traffique of our English marchants, and bils for sugars to be made by the Iewes, as well for the debts past, as hereafter, and for good order in the Ingenios. Also I mooued him againe for the Salt-peter, and other dispatches, which he referred to be agreed vpon by the two Alcaydes. But the Friday being the 20. the Alcaydes could not intend it, and vpon Saturday Alcayde Rodwan fell sicke, so on Sunday we made meanes to the King, and that afternoone I was sent for to conferre vpon the bargaine with the Alcaydes and others, but did not agree.

Vpon Tuesday I wrote a letter to the King for my dispatch, and the same afternoone I was called againe to the Court, and referred all things to the King, accepting his offer of Salt-peter.

That night againe the King had me into his Gallie, and the Spaniels did hunt the ducke.

The Thursday I was appointed to way the 300. kintals grosse of Salt-peter, and that afternoone the Tabybe came vnto mee to my lodging, shewing mee that the king was offended with Iohn Bampton for diuers causes.

The Sunday night late being the 7. of Iuly, I got the King to forgiue all to Iohn Bampton, and the King promised me to speake againe with me vpon Munday.

Vpon Tuesday I wrote to him againe for my dispatch, and then hee sent Fray Lewes to mee, and said that he had order to write.

Vpon Wednesday I wrote againe, and he sent me word that vpon Thursday I should come and be dispatched, so that I should depart vpon Friday without faile, being the twelfth of Iuly.

[Sidenote: The Emperor of Maroco his priuileges to the English.] So the Friday after according to the kings order and appointment I went to the court, and whereas motion and petition was made for the confirmation of the demaunds which I had preferred, they were all granted, and likewise the priuileges which were on the behalfe of our English marchants requested, were with great fauour and readinesse yeelded vnto. And whereas the Iews there resident were to our men in certaine round summes indebted, the Emperors pleasure and commandement was, that they should without further excuse or delay, pay and discharge the same. And thus at length I was dismissed with great honour and speciall countenance, such as hath not ordinarily bene shewed to other Ambassadors of the Christians.

And touching the priuate affaires intreated vpon betwixt her Maiestie and the Emperour, I had letters from him to satisfie her highnesse therein. So to conclude, hauing receiued the like honourable conduct from his Court, as I had for my part at my first landing, I embarked my selfe with my foresaid company, and arriuing not long after in England, I repaired to her Maiesties court, and ended my Ambassage to her highnesse good liking, with relation of my seruice performed.

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Last updated Monday, March 10, 2014 at 22:20