Travels of the Jesuits, Into Various Parts of the World, Volume I
About this text
Travels of the Jesuits was published in 1743. It was written by John Lockman. It is a series of writings related to the travel of Jesuit priests to several countries. Lockman was born in 1698. He was a scholar as well as a translator of various French works. He died in 1771. Selections have been made from Volumes One and Two of Travels of the Jesuit. One gets to know of the point of view of the Jesuit priests regarding India and its facets. Primary Reading Lockman, J., Travels of the Jesuits, Volume One, John Noon. Secondary Reading Carre, Abbe, The Travels of Abbe Carre, Volume One, Asian Educational Services. Carre, Abbe, The Travels of Abbe Carre, Volume Two, Asian Educational Services.
TRAVELS OF THE JESUITS, INTO Various Parts of the WORLD: Compiled from their LETTERS. Now first attempted in ENGLISH. Intermix'd with an ACCOUNT of the Manners, Government, Religion, &c. of the several Nations visited by those Fathers : WITH EXTRACTS from other Travellers, and mis- cellaneous NOTES. By Mr. LOCKMAN Illustrated with Maps and Sculptures. VOL. I
Printed for JOHN NOON, at the White Hart near
Mercer's Chapel, Cheapside.
M DCC XLIII.
The falubrious Air of the Island of Anjovan, and the abundant Refreshments which are met with in it, recovered our sick Men, almost as soon as they were put ashore. But a great many of those who enjoyed the finest Health fell sick, some for having drunk to Excess of the Liquors of that Country, which are exceedingly strong; others, for eating too greedily of cooling Fruits, and drinking immo derately of the Water which runs from the Rocks. They were seized with a malignant fever, together with a Purging and Vomitings and were light-headed. Being afraid of these Distempers, as they afterwards might grow infectious, we left this agreeable and fruitful Island much sooner than otherwise we should have done. We weighed Anchor the 14th of August with a favourable Wind, which however was not lasting; for scarce had we made seven or eight Leagues but we were becalmed. The Currents carried us towards the Island of Moali, and forced us to steer to the West of Comora or Angasia , the largest belonging to that little Archipelago.
During our Course from Angasia to Surat many of our People fell sick, who had all the Assistance they wanted. Father Petit my Companion, attend ing dassidously upon them, and endeavouring to inspire them with Sentiments suitable to their several Conditions, was himself soon after seized with a Fever of a very malignant Nature. On this Occasion I was no less edified by the Patience and Resignation he discovered during his Sickness, than by the Courage and Love he shewed whilst he visited such as wanted his [...]. If we except these last Sicknesess, which took off seven or eight of our Ship's Company, we had the happiest and smoothest passage, in every Respect, I ever heard of. There was not so much as the least: Storm, nor were we once becalmed ; and so perfect a Harmony subsisted always between the Officers and passengers, that 'twas with real Grief they seperated.
After sailing some Days, we arrived at Termepe tan, a small Town standinng on a fine River, where we cast Anchor. Here we met with the Ponchar train, a Ship belonging to the French East-India Company, which having sailed from the Island of Mascarin, had met with an English Privateer, a forty [Page 167] forty Gun Ship, off Cape Comerin. As this Privateer had a great Number of Men on board, and all their Cannon were drawn out, they had very much alarmed Mr. Du Bosco Captain of the Pontchartrain, the Privateer, having come up within half the Length of Cannon-fliot, but observing that the whole Crew of the Pontchartrain were upon Deck, and seemed resolved to make a stout Defence; the Privateer steered off, and cast Anchor at a Leagues Distance from them.
The first Conquest the Portuguese made in India was the taking of Calicut which they kept till such Time as the Nairs who are the Gentlemen and best Soldiers of the Country, seeing the Dutch attack the Portuguese on every Side, and disposess them of their best Fortresses, embraced this Op portunity for taking up Arms, and possesing themselves of Calicut, They there found above an hundred Pieces of Brass Cannon, part of which they threw into a neighbouring Lake, and carried the rest (being about Thirty or Forty) half a League up the Country, in order to secure them, and they are still there.
As the Coasts of Malabar, of Travancor, and the Fishing-Coast:, are inhabited chiefly by Chris tians, and under the Direction of the Jesuits, we had the holy Satisfaction of visiting, in our Course, most of the Churches in those Parts. Twas im possible for any Persons to receive more honourable Testimonies of Friendship, than were shewn us by the Missionaries and their several Converts. Here follows the Manner in which we were brought into Periapatam, which was much the same with the Recep tion we were favoured with in other Places. With in half a League from the church we were met by the Children, carrying Streamers and small Bells; whilst others were beating Drums, and sounding Trumpets. The Moment they saw us, they all shouted, and drove who should get first, in order to receive our blessing.
During this Voyage, which was ever along the Coasts of Malabar and Trevancor we had an Op portunity of observing the true Situation of the Lands and Towns, which are set down very erro neously in all our Maps and Charts. As soon as Bro ther Moricet, whom I left in Manaper, shall come hither, I'll do myself the Honour to send you an ac curate Map of this whole Country, which is vastly populous, we scarce coasting two Leagues without discovering Villages and large Settlements. Our Maps take Notice of some Islands on the Coast of Travancor
The City of Cotale is large and populous, tho like most other Cities of India, it is not surrounded either with Ditches or Walls. It stands up the Country, within four Leagues of Cape Comorin, at the Foot of Mountains, which makes this Cape fa mous for the Wonders told concerning it; several affirming that in this Neck or Land, the Extent of which is not above three Leagues, we find, at one and the same Time, the two most opposite Seasons of the Year, Summer and Winter, and that, in a Garden not five hundred Paces square, a Person has sometimes the Pleasure of seeing these two Sea sons united, the Trees, on one Side, being adorned with Fruits and Flowers; whilst those on the other are stript of all their Foliage. I myself had not Time to be an Eye-Witness of the Truth or Falsity [Page 177] of this ; but 'tis certain that, on the different Sides of the Cape, the Winds are always in contrary Points, and blow as tho' they were combating, so that when the Winds are Westerly, on the western Side of Cape Comororin, they are East on the eastern Side, as we ourselves found by Experience in this Voyage. From Calicut to Cape Comorin, the Wind blew almost always South-east, or South-west; but the Moment we had past the Cape, it blew North east. As therefore the Diversity of Winds, especi ally when lading, contributes very much to the Difference of Seasons, 'tis not impossible but that there may be, about the Point of the Cape, in a small Tract of Land, particular Spots so much ex posed to one of the Winds, and screen'd so fully from the other, that either Cold or Heat, and the Impressions which arise from them, may be felt at the same Time, in Places pretty near one another, as strongly as in other Places, at a much greater Distance. But I leave to our Literati the searching into the Physical Cause of this Contrariety of Winds which is not found elsewhere, tho' one would na turally imagine, that as the Principles are the same, like Effects should be produced in other Countries. Here, Reverend Father, would be the proper Place [Page 178] for one to present you with an accurate Description of the whole Country lying between Cotate and Pondicherryy since I myself visited it in the present Voyage, but to do this, more Time would be re quisite, and I am desired to conclude my Letter, for which Reason, I must omit, till another Oppor tunity, the rest of the curious Particulars I intended to mention. I shall only observe, that the Christi ans at Tanjaour have lately laboured under a dreadful Persecution.
In my former Letters, I observed that our Superiors were resolved to settle a new Mission in the Kingdom of Carnata in the Neighbourhood, and after the Model of that of Madura and had made Choice of me for that Purpose. As the Manners and Customs of these People are very extraordinary and it is proper for a Missionary to acquaint himself with them, I thought it necessary for me to go and study them in Madura, under Father Francis Lainez, and Father Joseph Carvaho; and accordingly laboured about six Months with them in that Mission. I afterwards went, at the Command of my Superiors, to Cangivaron the Capital of the Kingdom of Carnata and resided there some time. I am to observe that Catechists of a lower Caste, cannot be employed in instruding such Indians as are of a higlier Caste. The Bramins and Shootres, who are the principal and most extensive Castes, have a much greater Aversion to the parias who are under them, than any Prince in Europe could entertain for the Dregs of the People. These Bramins and Shootres would be dishonoured in their native Place, and lose all the Privileges of their Caste, should they listen to the Instructions of a Person whom their Countrymen consider as an abominable Wretch, We [Page 421] We therefore are obliged to appoint Parias-Cate chists for the Parias, and Bramin-catachists for the Bramins, a Circumstance which gives us no little Trouble, it not being easy to procure such, especially of the latter. Nothing is more difficult than to convert the Bramins; for these being naturally haughty, and puffed up with Notions of their exalted Birth, and their Superiority over the rest of the Castes, they thence are found less tractable, and more strongly attached to the Superstitions of their Country.