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

The true and perfect description of a voyage performed and done by Francisco de Gualle a Spanish Captaine and Pilot, for the Vice-roy of New Spaine, from the hauen of Acapulco in New Spaine, to the Islands of the Luçones or Philippinas, vnto the Hauen of Manilla, and from thence to the Hauen of Macao in China, and from Macao backe againe to Acapulco, accomplished in the yeere of our Lord, 1584.

Chap. 1.

. . .

The tenth of March in the yeere of our Lorde 1582 wee set sayle out of the Hauen of Acapulco, lying in the countrey of New Spaine, directing our course towards the Islands of the Luçones, or Philippinas West Southwest, running in that maner for the space of twentie fiue leagues, till wee came vnder sixteene degrees, so that wee might shunne the calmes by sayling close by the shoare. From thence forward we held our course West for the space of 30 leagues, and being there, we ran West, and West and by South, for the space of 1800 leagues, to the Iland called Isla del Enganno, which is the furthest Iland lying in the South parts of the Ilands called De los Ladrones, that is, The Ilands of rouers, or Islas de las Velas, vnder 13. degrees and 1/2. in latitude Septentrionall, and 164. degrees in longitude Orientall, vpon the fixed Meridionall line, which lyeth right with the Iland of Terçera. From thence we helde our coarse Westward for the space of 280. leagues, till we came to the point called El capo de Espirito Santo, that, is, The point of the holy Ghost, lying in the Iland Tandaya, the first Iland of those that are called Philippinas, Luçones, or Manillas, which is a countrey with fewe hilles, with some mines of brimstone in the middle thereof. From the point aforesayde, wee sailed West for the space of eighteene leagues to the point or entrie of the chanell, which runneth in betweene that Iland and the Iland of Luçon. This point or entrie lieth scarce vnder 12. degrees. All the coast that stretcheth from the entrie of the chanel to the point of El capo del Spirito santo, is not very faire.

Eight leagues from the sayde point lyeth a hauen of indifferent greatnesse, called Baya de Lobos, that is, The Bay of Woolues, hauing a small Iland at the mouth thereof: and within the chanell about halfe a league from the ende of the sayd Iland lyeth an Iland or cliffe, and when you passe by the point in the middle of the chanell, then you haue fiue and twentie fathom deepe, with browne sand: there we found so great a streame running Westward, that it made the water to cast a skum as if it had beene a sande, whereby it put us in feare, but casting out our lead, wee found fiue and twentie fathom deepe.

From the aforesayd entrie of the chanell North, and North and by East about tenne leagues, lyeth the Island of Catanduanes, about a league distant from the lande of Luçon, on the furthest point Eastward, and from the same entrie of the chanell towards the West and Southwest, lyeth the Iland Capuli about sixe leagues from thence, stretching Westsouthwest, and Eastnortheast, being fiue leagues long, and foure leagues broad: and as wee past by it, it lay Northward from vs vnder twelue degrees and 3/4. and somewhat high lande. Foure leagues from the aforesayd Iland of Capuli Northwestward lie the three Ilands of the hauen of Bollon in the Iland of Luçones, stretching North and South about foure leagues, distant from the firme lande halfe a league, whereof the furthest Southward lieth vnder thirteene degrees; In this chanell it is twentie fathome deepe, with white sand, and a great streame, running Southeast: we passed through the middle of the chanell. From this chanell wee helde our coarse Southwest, and Southwest and by West, for the space of twentie leagues, vntill wee came to the West ende of the Iland of Tycao, which reacheth East and West thirteene leagues. This point or hooke lyeth vnder 12. degrees and 3/4. In the middle betweene this Iland and the Iland Capuli there lie three Ilands called the Faranias, and we ranne in the same course on the Northside of all the Ilands, at the depth of 22. fathom with white sand.

From the aforesayd West point of the Iland Tycao to the point of Buryas it is East and West to sayle about the length of a league or a league and a halfe: we put into that chanell, holding our course South, and South and by West about three leagues, vntill we were out of the chanell at sixteene fathome deepe, with halfe white and reddish sande in the chanell, and at the mouth thereof, whereof the middle lyeth vnder 12. degrees and 2/3. and there the streames runne Northward.

The Isle of Masbate. The Iland of Buryas stretched Northwest and Southeast, and is low lande, whereof the Northwest point is about three leagues from the coast of Luçon, but you cannot passe betweene them with any shippe, but with small foistes and barkes of the countrey. This shallow channell lieth vnder twelue degrees: and running thorow the aforesayd chanell betweene the Ilands Tycao and Buryas, as I sayd before, we sayled Southward about two leagues from the Iland of Masbate, which stretcheth East and West 8. leagues long, being in bredth 4. leagues, and lyeth vnder 12. degrees and 1/4. in the middle thereof, and is somewhat high land.

From the sayd chanell betweene Tycao and Buryas, wee helde our course Westnorthwest for thirteene leagues, leauing the Iland Masbate on the Southside, and the Iland Buryas on the North side: at the ende of thirteene leagues wee came by an Iland called Banton, which is in forme like a hat, vnder twelue degrees and 2/3. when we had sayled the aforesayd thirteene leagues and eight leagues more, on the South side wee left the Iland called Rebuiam, which stretcheth Northwest, and Northwest and by North, and Southeast, and Southeast and by South, for the space of eight leagues, being high and crooked lande, whereof the North point lyeth vnder twelue degrees and 2/3. and there you finde 35 fathom deepe, with white sand.

From the aforesayd Iland of Banton Southward nine leagues, there beginne and followe three Ilandes, one of them being called Bantonsilla, which is a small Iland in forme of a sugar loafe: the second Crymara, being somewhat great in length, reaching East and West about two leagues: the third Itaa, or the Ile of Goates, hauing certaine houels. By all these Ilands aforesayd you may passe with all sortes of shippes, whereof the foremost lyeth Southward vnder twelue degrees and 1/4. From the Iland of Bantonsilla, or small Banton, wee helde our course Northwest for the space of foure leagues, to the chanell betweene Ilands called de Vereies, and the Iland of Marinduque, the Vereies lying on the South side vnder twelue degrees and 3/4. (which are two small Ilands like two Frigats) and the Iland Marinduque on the North side vnder twelue degrees, and 1/4. which is a great Iland, stretching Westnorthwest, and Eastsoutheast, hauing in length 12. and in bredth 7. leagues. On the North side, with the Iland Luçon it maketh a long and small chanell, running somewhat crooked, which is altogether full of shallowes and sandes, whereby no shippes can passe through it. The furthest point Westward of the same Iland lyeth vnder thirteene degrees and 1/4. It is high lande, on the East side hauing the forme of a mine of brimstone or fierie hill, and on the West side the land runneth downewarde at the point thereof being round like a loafe of bread: in the chanell betweene it and the Vereies, there are 18. fathom deepe with small black sand.

From the aforesaid chanell of Vereies and Marinduque, wee helde our course Westnorthwest twelue leagues to the lande of Mindora, to the point or hooke called Dumaryn, lying full vnder thirteene degrees: Fiue leagues forward from the sayde chanell on the South side wee left an Iland called Isla de maestro del Campo, that is, The Iland of the Colonell, lying vnder twelue degrees and 3/4. which is a small and flat Iland: In this course we had 45 fathom deep white sand.

By this point or end of the Iland Marinduque beginneth the Iland of Myndoro, which hath in length East and West fiue and twentie leagues, and in bredth twelue leagues, whereof the furthest point Southward lyeth vnder thirteene degrees, and the furthest point Northward vnder thirteene degrees and 2/3. and the furthest point Westward vnder thirteene degrees. This Iland with the Iland of Luçon maketh a chanell of fiue leagues broad, and ten or twelue fathom deepe with muddie ground of diuers colours, with white sande. Fiue leagues forward from Marinduque lyeth the riuer of the towne of Anagacu, which is so shallowe, that no shippes may enter into it. From thence two leagues further lie the Ilands called Bacco, which are three Ilands lying in a triangle, two of them being distant from the land about three hundred cubits, and between them and the land you may passe with small shippes: And from the lande to the other Iland, are about two hundred cubites, where it is altogether shallowes and sandes, so that where the shippes may passe outward about 150. cubites from the lande, you leaue both the Ilands on the South side, running betweene the third Iland and the riuer called Rio del Bacco, somewhat more from the middle of the chanell towardes the Iland, which is about a league distant from the other; the chanell is tenne fathom deepe, with mud and shelles vpon the ground: the riuer of Bacco is so shallowe, that no ships may enter into it. From this Iland with the same course two leagues forward, you passe by the point called El Capo de Rescaseo, where we cast out our lead, and found that a man may passe close by the lande, and there you shall finde great strong streames: and halfe a league forward with the same course, lyeth the towne of Mindoro, which hath a good hauen for shippes of three hundred tunnes. Three leagues Northward from the same hauen lyeth the Iland called Cafaa, stretching from East to West, being hilly ground.

From the sayde towne of Myndora, wee helde our course Westnorthwest eight leagues, till wee came to the poynt or hooke of the sandes called Tulen, lying vpon the Iland of Luçon, which sande or banke reacheth into the Sea halfe a league from the coast: you must keepe about an hundred cubites from it, where you finde eight fathom water, muddie and shellie ground: you runne along by those sandes North, and North and by West for the space of two leagues, till you come to the riuer called Rio de Anasebo: all the rest of the coast called De los Limbones to the month or entrie of the Bay called Manilla, (which are foure leagues) is sayled with the same course. The Limbones (which are Ilands so called) are high in forme like a paire of Organs, with good hauens for small shippes, running along by the Limbones: and two leagues beyond them on the South side, wee leaue the Ilands of Fortan, and foure Ilands more, but the three Ilands of Lubao, which are very low, lie vnder 13. degrees and 1/3. and the Limbones lie in the mouth or entrie of the Bay of Manilla vnder 14. degrees and 1/4.

From thence we ranne Northwest for the space of sixe leagues to the hauen of Cabite, keeping along by the land lying on the West side, where it is shallowe, and is called Los Baixos del Rio de Cannas, The shallowes of the riuer of Reedes: all along this Bay in the same course, there is from ten to foure fathom deepe.

Being by the point or hooke of Cabite, then wee kept but an hundred paces from it, running Southwest, southsouthwest, and South, vntill we discouered the whole mouth or entrie of the Bay, where we might anker at foure fathom about two hundred cubites from the lande, and then the towne of Manilla was two leagues Northward from vs.49

49 The Philippine Islands are an archipelago of about 1400 islands, forming a dependency of Spain, lying between 4 deg. 40 min and 20 deg. N. lat., and 116 deg. 40 min. and 126 deg. 30 min. E. lon., and having the China Sea on the west, and the Pacific Ocean on the East. They are very imperfectly known at present, but are estimated to have a total area of 114,000 square miles, and a population of about 10,000,000. The principal islands of the many hundreds of large and small forming the group are — Luzon, Mindanao, Palawan, Mindoro, Panay, Negros, Zebu, Leyte, and Samar.

The Philippines were discovered by Fernando Magalhaens in 1521, in the reign of Philip II, after whom they were named; and in 1564 the Spaniards made a settlement on one of the islands, and founded Manila in 1571. They obtained the possession of this important group almost without bloodshed; and they have preserved it by the extensive diffusion of the Roman Catholic religion among the Malays, who form the greater part of the population. The Spaniards have retained the island ever since, except from 1762 to 1764, during which the English held Manila, and for the release of which the Spaniards paid a ransom of £1,000,000.

Chap. 2.

The course and voyage of the aforesayd Francisco Gualle out of the hauen or roade of Manilla, to the hauen of Macao in China, with all the courses and situations of the places.

Sayling out of the hauen of Cabite, lying in the Bay of Manilla, wee helde our course Westwarde for the space of eighteene leagues, to the point called El Cabo de Samballes: and when wee were eight leagues in our way, wee left the two Ilands Maribillas on the South side, and sailed about a league from them: the point of Samballes aforesayde lyeth vnder foureteene degrees, and 2/3. being low land, at the end of the same coast of Luçon, on the West side.

From the hooke or point aforesayde, wee ranne North, and North and by West, for the space of fiue and twentie leagues (aboue a league from the coast of Luçon) to the point called Cabo de Bullinao: all this coast and Cape is high and hilly ground, which Cape lyeth vnder sixteene degrees and 2/3. From this Cape de Bellinao we helde our course North, and North and by East, for 45. leagues to the point called El Cabo de Bojador, which is the furthest lande Northwarde from the Iland Luçon lying vnder 19. degrees.

The Cape de Bullinao being past the lande maketh a great creeke or bough, and from this creeke the coast runneth North to the point of Bojador, being a land full of cliffes and rockes that reach into the Sea, and the land of the hooke or point is high and hilly ground.

From the point of Bojador, wee helde our course Westnorthwest an hundred and twentie leagues, vntill we came to the Iland called A Ilha Branca, or the white Iland, lying in the beginning of the coast and Bay of the riuer Canton vnder two and twentie degrees, hauing foure and twentie fathom browne muddie ground.

From the Iland Ilha Branca, wee helde the aforesayde course of Westnorthwest, for the space of sixteene leagues, to the Iland of Macao lying in the mouth of the riuer of Canton, and it maketh the riuer to haue two mouths or entries, and it is a small Iland about three leagues great.

Chap. 3.

The Nauigation or course of the aforesayd Francisco Gualle out of the hauen of Macao to Newe Spaine, with the situation and stretchings of the same, with other notable and memorable things concerning the same voyage.

When we had prepared our selues, and had taken our leaues of our friends in Macao, we set saile vpon the foure and twentieth of Iuly, holding our course Southeast, and Southeast and by East, being in the wane of the Moone: for when the Moone increaseth, it is hard holding the course betweene the Ilands, because as then the water and streames run very strong to the Northwest; wee trauailed through many narrowe channels by night, hauing the depth of eight or ten fathom, with soft muddie ground, vntill wee were about the Iland Ilha Branca, yet we saw it not, but by the height we knew that we were past it.

Being beyond it, we ranne Eastsoutheast an hundred and fiftie leagues, to get aboue the sands called Os Baixos dos Pescadores, and the beginning of the Ilands Lequeos on the East side, which Ilands are called As Ilhas fermosas,50 that is to say, The faire Ilands. This I vnderstoode by a Chinar called Santy of Chinchon, and hee sayde that they lie vnder one and twentie degrees and 3/4. there it is thirtie fathom deepe: and although wee sawe them not, notwithstanding by the height and depth of the water we knew we were past them.

50 Formosa.

Being past As Ilhas fermosas, or the faire Ilands, wee helde our course East, and East and by North, for two hundred and sixtie leagues, vntill we were past the length of the Ilands Lequeos,51 sayling about fiftie leagues from them: the said Chinar tolde me, that those Ilands called Lequeos are very many, and that they haue many and very good hauens, and that the people and inhabitants thereof haue their faces and bodies painted like the Bysayas of the Ilands of Luçon or Philippinas and are apparelled like the Bysayas, and that there also are mines of gold: Hee sayd likewise that they did often come with small shippes and barkes laden with Bucks and Harts-hides, and with golde in graines or very small pieces, to traffique with them of the coast of China, which hee assured mee to bee most true, saying that hee had bene nine times in the small Ilands, bringing of the same wares with him to China: which I beleeued to bee true, for that afterwarde I enquired thereof in Macao, and upon the coast of China, and found that hee sayde true. The furthest or vttermost of these Ilands stretching Northwarde and Eastwarde, lie vnder nine and twentie degrees.

51 The Lu–Tchu (Chinese) or Liu–Khiu (Japanese) Islands are a chain of 52 Islands belonging to Japan, and stretching S.W. to Formosa.

Being past these Ilands, then you come to the Ilands of Iapon, whereof the first lying West and South, is the Iland of Firando, where the Portugals vse to traffique: they are in length altogether an hundred and thirtie leagues, and the furthest Eastward lieth under two and thirtie degrees: we ranne still East, and East and by North, vntill we were past the sayd hundred and thirtie leagues.

All this information I had of the aforesaid Chinar, as also that there I should see some mines of brimstone or fierie hilles, being seuentie leagues beyond them,52 and thirtie leagues further I should finde four Ilands lying together, which I likewise found, as hee had tolde mee: Other Ilands Eastward of Iapon. And that being in Iapon, he sayd hee had there seene certaine men of a very small stature, with great rolle of linnen cloth about there heads, that brought golde in small pieces, and some white Cangas of cotton, (which are pieces of cotton-linnen so called by the Chinars) as also salte-fish like the Spanish Atun, or Tunney, which hee sayde came out of other Ilands Eastward from Iapon: and by the tokens and markes which hee shewed mee, I gessed whereabout those Ilands should bee, and found them not farre from whence he sayd they lay. Hee sayd likewise that all the Ilands of Iapon haue good hauens and chanels, being a Countrey full of Rice, Corne, Fish, and flesh, and that they are indifferent and reasonable people to traffique with, and that there they haue much siluer.

52 This probably refers to Fusyiama, which can be seen from Tokio, 80 miles away. Its last eruption took place in 1707.

Running thus East, and East and by North about three hundred leagues from Iapon, wee found a very hollowe water, with the streame running out of the North and Northwest, with a full and very broad Sea, without any hinderance or trouble in the way that wee past: and what winde soeuer blewe, the Sea continued all in one sort, with the same hollow water and streame, vntill wee had passed seuen hundred leagues. Iapon 900. leagues distant from the coast of America in 37 degrees and an halfe. About two hundred leagues from the coast and land of newe Spaine wee beganne to lose the sayd hollow Sea, and streame: whereby I most assuredly thinke and beleeue, that there you shall finde a chanell or straight passage, betweene the firme lande of newe Spaine, and the Countreys of Asia and Tartaria. Likewise all this way from the aforesayde seuen hundred leagues, we found a great number of Whale-fishes and other fishes called by the Spaniards Atuns or Tunnies, whereof many are found on the coast of Gibraltar in Spaine, as also Albacoras and Bonitos, which are all fishes, which commonly keepe in chanels, straights, and running waters, there to disperse their seede when they breede: which maketh mee more assuredly beleeue, that thereabouts is a chanel or straight to passe through.

Read Francis Vlloa chap. 16. Being by the same course vpon the coast of newe Spaine, vnder seuen and thirtie degrees and 1/2. wee passed by a very high and faire lande with many trees, wholly without snowe, and foure leagues from the lande, you finde thereabouts many drifts of rootes, leaues of trees, reeds, and other leaues like figge leaues, the like whereof wee found in great abundance in the countrey of Iapon, which they eate: and some of those that wee found, I caused to bee sodden with flesh, and being sodden, they eate like Coleworts: there likewise wee found great store of Seales: whereby it is to bee presumed and certainely to bee beleeued, that there are many riuers, bayes, and hauens along by those coastes to the hauen of Acapulco.

From thence wee ranne Southeast, Southeast and by South, and Southeast and by East, as wee found the winde, to the point called El Cabo de Sant Lucas, which is the beginning of the lande of California, on the Northwest side, lying vnder two and twentie degrees, being fiue hundred leagues distant from Cape Mendoçino.

Hauens lately found out. In this way of the aforesayde fiue hundred leagues along by the coast, are many Ilands: and although they bee but small, yet without doubt there are in them some good hauens, as also in the firme land, where you haue these hauens following, now lately found out, as that of the Ile of Sant Augustine, lying vnder thirtie degrees and 3/4. and the Iland called Isla de Cedros, scarce vnder eight and twenty deg. and 1/4. and the Iland lying beneath Saint Martyn, vnder three and twentie degrees and 1/2. All this coast and countrey, as I thinke, is inhabited, and sheweth to be a very good countrey: for there by night wee sawe fire, and by day smoke, which is a most sure token that they are inhabited.

From the poynt or hooke of Saint Lucas, to the Southeast side of California, wee helde our course Eastsoutheast, for the space of 80. leagues, to the point called El cabo de las corrientes, that is, the Cape of the streames lying vnder 19. degrees and 2/3. And running this course, Northward about a league from vs wee sawe three Ilands called Las tres Marias, (that is to say, The three Maries) running the same course. About foure leagues from the other Ilands, there are other Ilands, reaching about two or three leagues: All this way from the mouth or gulfe of California aforesayd, for the space of the sayd fourescore leagues, there are great streames that run Westward.

From the point or Cape de las Corrientes, we ranne Southeast, and sometimes Southeast and by East, for the space of an hundred and thirtie leagues to the hauen of Acapulco. In this way of an hundred and thirtie leagues, being twentie leagues on the way, we had the hauen of Natiuidad, that is, of the birth of the Virgin Mary: and other eight leagues further, the hauen of Saint Iago, or Saint Iames; and sixe leagues further, the sea Strand called La Playa de Colima, that is, the Strand of Colima. All this coast from California to the hauen of Acapulco is inhabited by people that haue peace and traffique with the Spaniards, and are of condition and qualities like the people of the other places of new Spaine.

The conclusion of the Author of this last voyage.

All this description and nauigation haue I my selfe seene, prooued, and well noted in my voyage made and ended in the yeere of our Lord 1584. from great China out of the hauen and riuer of Canton, as I will more at large set it downe vnto your honour, with the longitudes and latitudes thereof, as God shall permit mee time and leysure, whom I beseech to send you long and happie dayes.

And the same was truly translated out of Spanish into lowe Dutch verbatim out of the Originall copy, (which was sent vnto the Viceroy of the Portugall Indies) by Iohn Huyghen Van Linschoten.

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