Travels of Pietro della Valle in India, Volume 2: From the by Edward Grey

By Edward Grey

The guides of the Hakluyt Society (founded in 1846) made to be had edited (and occasionally translated) early bills of exploration. the 1st sequence, which ran from 1847 to 1899, involves a hundred books containing released or formerly unpublished works by means of authors from Christopher Columbus to Sir Francis Drake, and protecting voyages to the recent international, to China and Japan, to Russia and to Africa and India. A member of a noble Roman kin, Pietro della Valle all started traveling in 1614 on the recommendation of a physician, as a substitute to suicide after a failed love affair. The letters describing his travels in Turkey, Persia and India have been addressed to this consultant. This 1664 English translation of della Valle's letters from India, republished by way of the Hakluyt Society in 1892, includes interesting ethnographic information, quite on spiritual ideals, and is a crucial resource for the background of the Keladi zone of South India.

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The Mahratta name is Hirda. It is also called Arjuna. It is used for calico-printing, but in the present day chiefly for tanning purposes. The name Myrobolan, 234 THE MYROBALANE TREE. such as are brought into Italy, preserved in Sugar. It hath leaves much like that plant which produces Gum Arabick,1 by me formerly describ'd2; different onely in this, that in that of Gum Arabick the branch, consisting of many leaves, is much less, round or oval, and seems one leaf made up of many long and narrow ones : but in this Myrobalane Tree the branch is sufficiently long, and the small leaves composing it in two rows on either side are somewhat larger; nor is the Myrobalane Tree prickly, like that of Gum Arabick.

Court, and waiting for a new Answer, many daycs would be lost, therefore it seem'd best to him that we should all put ourselves upon the way without further waiting; and that to carry his (the Ambassador's) Goods they had appointed ten Men according to his King's order; wherefore Sig. Fernandez told us he was resolv'd to go by all means, and seeing the ten men allow'd him to carry his Goods were not sufficient, they alone requiring twenty-five, besides those of the rest of his Company, he would hire the rest at his own charge and rid himself of this perplexity.

So that, Venk-tapa Naieka knowing that one of the principal businesses of this Embassie was that of the Prince of Bangkel, which little pleas'd him ; and feeling also that this year the Ships from Portugal were not yet arriv'd (which every year fetch Pepper out of his Dominions, and bring him in a great sum of money, by agreement made with the Portugals, who every year were either to take it, or pay for it), so that, neither the Ships nor the money coming this year, they could not easily pay him for the Pepper this year, nor yet for a great part of that of the last, for which, by reason of the loss of their Ships, they still owed him ; and lastly, observing the Portugals weakened and low, so that they not onely stood in need of him, but now, in some sort, began to submit themselves to him with this Embassie which they sent to him ; and remembering the disgrace of their pass'd defeat; 'twas no strange thing that, being become insolent thereupon, as 'tis the manner of the Barbarians, and designing to carry it high over them, he not onely shew'd no great liking of the Embassie, but made little account of it; and in a manner despis'd it, that so he might keep himself and his affairs in greater reputation.

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