The Travels of Peter Mundy, Vol-I

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Introductory notes

Peter Mundy was an East India Company factor and the son of a Cornish pilchard merchant from Penryn. He arrived in Surat on 30 Sept. 1628, and was sent to Agra in November 1630, where he remained until 17 Dec. 1631. He then proceeded to Puttana on the borders of Bengal, returning to Agra and Surat before returning to Dover on 9 Sept. 1634. He undertook further voyages to India, China, and Japan in April 1636. His travels are recorded in journals whose manuscripts are held in the Bodleian Library (Rawlinson A315) and the British Library (Harleian 2286, Add.19278-81). The Bodleian Library MS continues his narrative, including journeys to Denmark, Prussia, and Russia, from 1639 to 1648. It is written possibly by a clerk, with corrections by Mundy, including his own drawings and tracings of some of his routes. It ends in 1667 and contains miscellaneous notes made after his final return home about comets, sea-fights, accidents, and political events in London and Cornwall. The standard printed text of Mundy’s travels is Richard Carnac Temple’s edition (see below) which contains some of Mundy’s illustrations. Our selections from this text focus on his account of travelling through Gujarat and Malwa during the notorious Gujarat famine of 1630-32. But they also include sections from his other travels which deal with food, dearth of provisions during travel, encounters with plenty or excess, accounts of weather disturbances, and observations on the transport of goods and provisions. Primary Sources The Travels of Peter Mundy, in Europe and Asia, 1608-1667, 5 vols, ed. Richard Carnac Temple (Cambridge: Printed for the Hakluyt Society, 1907-1925) Suggested Reading R E Pritchard, Peter Mundy, Merchant Adventurer (Oxford: Bodleian Library, 2011). Palmira Johnson Brummett, The “Book” of Travels: Genre, Ethnology, and Pilgrimage, 1250-1700 (Leiden: Brill, 2009). Daniel Carey and Claire Jowitt, eds., Richard Hakluyt and Travel Writing in Early Modern Europe, Hakluyt Society, extra series, v. 47 (Farnham and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2012).



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Those voyages, Journeies, etts. Thatt befell mee From the tyme off my First Departure From my Parentts untill the tyme off my First arrivall from East India I did sett Downe together in one booked This Booke, att my comming home, I carried with mee in to the Country (The Coppy thereof beeing First taken and left in the Custody off the Right Honble. Sir Paul Pindar Knight), and att my comming away againe lefft itt With my Father, who promised to send itt after mee. Butt, lending itt to one or other, itt came not to hand ; Soe Went to Sea Without itt, The voyage to China, etts. From whence, beeing returned, having allsoe kept a Journall of thatt voyage in the Nature off the Former, and the Oreginall thereof not to bee procured, I have caused the Coppy afforesaid to bee coppied outt againe into this booke, [Page 3] adding and Joyning thereto this last voyage and occurrences In the reading whereof lett these Following advertisementts bee observed, beeing Divided into three generall heads, and each off these again into three braunches as Followeth:

First. That itt consists of three Manner of Writing, viz.,

1. The Most and principall is Journall Wise :- To say accidents, passages off every Daies Journey by land, and each Daies sayling by Sea, off which I took butt a Cursary and supercall Notice as a Passenger, and. To say truth, nott soe puntuall as I oughtt or Mightt have Don, Never Making accomptt to make Much accomptt off it. What I Did Was some Whatt aswell to keepe my owne remembraunce on occasion off Discourse concerning perticularities off thes voyages. As allsoe to pleasure such Freinds (who mightt come to the reading thereof) Thatt are Desirous to understand somwhatt off Forraigne Countries.

2. Sundry passages recollected by Memory, as From my First setting Forth untill my arrivall att Constantinople, and here and there some clause or other, butt Not Many, off Which I took nott presentt Notice.

3. Here are in Divers places inserted the reports and Writings off others, as the tables off lattitude, longitude, etts. throughoutt this book. For Which I was beeholding unto my Freinds, Seamen, As allsoe Sundry relationes and reports off other Men according as the tymes and places gave some occasion to speak off [Page 4] Secondly, in the Designes or Figures there is to bee considered

1. Thatt they Were nott taken att Sight (Most of them) as they oughtt to have bin, butt long after, by aprehension off such things seene.

2. Thatt I have no skill in portraicture, only I have endeavoured to expresse the Most Meteriall off the things mentioned.

3. They are all drawne on loose papers, slightly pasted in, Which may bee easily taken out againe, because I may hereafifter perchaunce cause them to bee better Don and inserted in the void spaces lefft off purpose, and in the places off the other papers Now there Fastened. Thirdly. These three pointts are to bee observed as Well in the reading off this Memoriall as off all others off this kind :

I. Thatt India Comprehends (under thatt Name) a large extentt. The people Soe Farre Differing in Religion, Customes, habitts, etts., as they are Distantt in place. And the places so various in beasts, Fowle, Fruitts, plantts, etts. as they Differ in Scituation. Therefore, to bee considered Whatt partt off India is spoken off or Meant, For India properly (as I conceave) is butt one province, Named Hindostan, Wherein (once Dilly) now Agra is the cheiffe seatt, and From Whence I conceave the Word India is Derived, or From the River Indus Butt Now under this Name is encluded From Persia even to China by sea and [Page 5] by land, there lying Many large vast kindomes beetweene, allso Inffinite Number off Hands small and greatt, as Sumatra, Java, the Mollucaes, etts. in the South Sea with others Dispersed in those Seas either to the Northward or South Ward off the lyne.

2. There may bee enquiry made off some thatt have bin in those parts and yett they know of Noe such Matter. Itt is to bee understood thatt either they have nott seene se [[? so]] not heard, or else have nott regarded. For example, a straunger May live in England Many yeares and perhapps nott know Whither there are any Otters or badgers in the Countrie or noe, because hee hath nott seene Nor enquired affter such, and soe consequently off some Customes, as pressing to Death, etts.

3. Lett any in the reading off Forraigne relationes (especially this) bee indulgentt and Deliberate in censuring, and not over hasty in reproach. I doe conffesse the Matter to bee Meane and the phrase and Decorum Suiteable, yett full off variety and such as Most part thereoff not (as I conceave) to bee Found in other Writings ; Allsoe, thatt itt is the Fruit off some vacantt houres in those long voyages by sea and on shoare, and the best end and purpose I know thereof is againe to serve to passe away tyme thatt may bee spared, Desiring No Farther estimation thereof thatt [[? than]] thatt it may bee reckoned among those recreationes Which are accompted honest and laudable (off Which sort are Musicke, painting, histories, civill [Page 6] Discours, etts.). I Doe allsoe conffesse thatt Many things are Misplaced, as some First that should bee last, and soe to the Contrary ; allsoe some things therin mought bee better lefftt outt and others omitted Were better in there place. Thus For Matter and phrase. All this allsoe I could Mend, and When I had Don, even begin againe, butt, as I said, the phrase is sutable to the Matter. Yett, however, lett this one thing breed some better liking off itt, Thatt I have endeavoured to com as Near the truth off the Matters Discribed as possibly I could attain unto by my owne experience or the Most probablest- Relation off others. I have inserted sundry Mappes in severall places of this Booke in which you may observe redd pricked lines. Those Doe shew the Countries Wee passed through, the places Wee came unto, and the Way Wee went. Only Where the Way is traced with ciffres, Oes, or nulles, those voyages and Journies Were only intended and not performed for certaine reasons, and the way putt Down Which Wee should have gon, as from Macao in Chyna to the Manillas, from thence through the South Sea unto Aquapullco on the back side of America, soe overland to Mexico, St. John d'Ullooa etts., Fol. 148, and the Mappe of the World att the beginning of the booke ; see there Allsoe from Arckangell in Russia upp the River Dweena to Vologda, thence to the Citty of Mosco, Smolensko, Vilna etts. and soe to Dantzigke in Prussia.


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I had not bene att home fifteen dayes, but I was sent away with Mr. James Wiche, bound for Constantinople in the Shipp the Royall Marchant, Captaine Josua Downinge, with whome went passengers Mr. James Wiche aforesaid my then Master, Mr. James Garroway, Mr. Bartholomew [Page 15] Abbott Mr. Roger and Mr. Charles Vivian, with five or six other Merchants. In our Passage wee made sondry Ports, vizt. Gibraltare Mallaga Alicante, Majorca [Page 16] Alcadia in Minorca Messena on Scicillia, Zante, Scandarone or Allexandretta, Scio neere Smirna, and soe to Constantinople, Att all which places (Alcadia excepted) were English Marchants, by whome wee were joyfully receaved and welcomed, our passage being very prosperous, pleasant and full of various Novelties and delights.

[...]Leghorne is the neatest, cleanest and pleasantest place that I have seene, their houses painted without side in Stories, Landskipps etc., with various Coulors, makeing [Page 17] a verie delightfull shewe.

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Zante a small Island from whence wee have Currence of which the Inhabitants reape such benefitt as that they will not affoard themselves so much ground as to Till theire Corne being supplyed from the Mayne.

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Scandarone or Allexandretta is the Sea port of Alleppo some three dayes Journie distant. It is very unwholsome by reason of the huge high hills hindringe the approach of the Sunne Beames, untill nine or ten a Clocke in the morning, lyeinge in a great Marsh full of boggs, foggs and Froggs the Topps of the Mountaines continually covered with Snowe, aboundinge with wild beasts, as Lyons, Wylde Boares, Jacalls, Porcupines, etc. [Page 20] great store of Wild fowle, haveing seene a flight of wild Swanns; aboundance of Fish.

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Lastly the famous Port and Imperiall Cittie of Constantinople, of which there beinge soe ample and elegant description else where1


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Heere the English Merchants passe verie Commodiousley with pleasure, love and Amitye amonge themselves, wearinge our owne Countrie habitt. Provision, fruite and Wyne very good varietye and plenties Heere I remained about three yeares. The second yeare after [Page 23] our arrivall, my Master died of the small pox, beinge in tyme of Pestilence, which Customarily visitts the Cittie once in fowre yeares, or five att the most I Soe remained with Mr. Lawrence Greene untill the departure of the Honourable Paule Pindar, being licensed by the Grand Signior, and Sir John Eyers arriving to supply his placed [Page 25] Constantinople standeth on seven hills containing in circuit about fifteen miles, Galata, etts., on the other side of the water not reckoned ; two thousand Mosquees or turkish Churches ; the Greek Christians have forty. Churches ; the Jewes thirty eight sinagogues. The francks or Italians have two Churches on the other side in Gallata. It hath seven hundred and forty publick fountaines. The Armenians have four Churches.

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The tribut called Charay levied on the Jewes at Constantinople, being one Chequeene for every male child, amounts to eleven Milliones three hundred chequeene (a mistake I conceive, 11 milliones for 11 Mille, in french, 1000). Every greeke here and within three miles of the Citty pay allsoe one Zequeene, amounting unto thirty eight thousand Chekeenes per annum. [Page 28] The Seraglio is the pallace of the Gran Signior inclosing as much ground as St. James parcke : Large Courts : Spacious gardeins, enbattled walles, stored with Artillerie, divers manner of Structures, which indeed seeme severall pallaces, among whome there is one called a Caska (or Cheeaskee) without the wall of the seraglio, close to the water side, where hee accustometh to take his gallie (or Kaeeck), of the delicatest and rarest presence that ever I beheld, for it is a quadrat of seven arches on a side cloisterwise, like the Rialto walk in Venice, and in the middest riseth a Core of three or four Roomes with Chimneys whose mantle trees are of silver, curiously glazed, protected with an Iron grate all guilt over most gloriously.The whole frame soe set with Opalls, Rubies, Emeralds, burnisht with gold, painted with flowers and graced with Inlaid worcke of porphiry, marble, Jett, Jasper and delicate stones, that I am perswaded there is not such a bird cage in the world.

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The walkes are shaded with Cipresse, Cedar, turpentine and trees which wee only know by their names, amongst such as afford sustenance, as figgs, almonds, olive, pomegranetts, Lemmons, Orenges, and such like, but it should seeme, they are here as it were inforced, and kept in order with extraordinary dilligence

[Mundy's route in Turkey]
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A Journey overland from Constantinople to London,

begun the 6th. May anno 1620
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The 9th. May, 1620. Wee came to Choorloo (20 miles), [Page 48] where Mr. Beamond, Mr. Wilson and Taddue overtooke us.

The l0th. May, 1620. Passinge by Caristran (15 miles). Wee came to a Towne named Bergasse (15 miles) haveinge a prettie fresh water River with a Stone Bridge by which wee pitched.

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The 12th. May, 1620. Wee Came to, and past through the Cittie of Adrianople (15 miles) where, on the other side of it, in a very faire learge Greene just before the Grand Sigrs. pallace, wee pitched; but there succeeded such a terrible shower of rayne with thunder and lightninge, that wee were forced to seeke a better harbour, which was profered us, beinge a greate howse to lodge the Gran Signiors trayne and horses, when he cometh thither, which is very seldome. Heere is also a fresh water River and a bridge.


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The 15th. May, 1620. From the place a foresaid wee came to this Towne (Armanly, 15 miles) and pitched hard by a good Cane. These [Page 53] Besistenes are faire greate buildings full of Shopps within, which open att nine in the morning and shutt att three in the affternoone. The Owners leaveinge their Shopps and goods in Custodie of the Keepers of the said place, being verye secure, where are sold none but fine and rich wares.

Bathes are places where Men resort to wash themselves, which is often used, especially by weomen, for whom there bee bathes a parte which they frequent twice a Weeke att least.

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The 16th. of May, 1620. Wee came to Uzumyova a little Towne where wee dined ; then to Cayalucke (15 miles), a poore Towne of Christians, Where their best walls were of Stakes and Bowes covered with strawe. The 17th. May, 1620. Comminge to another poore Towne of Christians (Papaslee, 18 miles) [...]


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This punnishment of Stakeinge is ordinarily inflicted on such kinde of Offenders, which is by driveinge with a great Sledge a bigge, longe, sharpe, poynted pole in att their Fundament quite through their Body, untill it come forth betwene head and shoulders. The Malefactor is first laid on the Ground flatt on his Belly with ropes tied to his feete, where divers hold on and pull, one or two kneeling on his backe to keepe him from strugglinge ; while another, att the farther end, with a Mall or sledge beateth it into his body. Then they sett the Pole an end, where the body is to remaine three dayes, and continueth alive ordinarily Eight or nine howres, sometymes more. Myself was present att one of theis Executions att Constantinople, where I heard the blowes of the Mall, and the most horrible and fearefull Crye of the Tortured wretch ; but hee sodainely left off, even as the Stake was through his Body, all though hee lived and spake many howres after. I could not well come neere to see him for the presse of people till hee was sett upp. Some are executed by Gaunchinge. Gaunches are [Page 56] great, sharpe, poynted Iron Hookes of about a yard and a halfe in Compasse, which are fastned on a high paire of Gallowes, three hookes on each side. On the two side Timbers of the said Gallowes (which goe four or five yards higher then the hookes) there is annother Beame overthwart, on which are fastned acrosse three lesser, over each paire of hookes one, haveinge litle Pullies att their ends, which lye right over the poynts of the said hookes. Soe the Offender, haveinge his hands and feete made fast together behinde his back, is by them hoysed upp, and, on a suddaine lett fall upon one of the said hookes, where hee must hange three dayes likewise lett it Catch where it will, breast, shoulders, or thighes ; but most commonly it runns in at their bellies and out att their Backe, and may remaine alive a whole day or more.

Others are hanged, although there are noe publique Gallowes nor Gibbetts, as I could see, but on Trees ; and if it bee in a Towne, upon some end of a beame stickinge out of any mans wall or howse, or any other place where they can conveniently fasten a Rope.

Women offenders are bound in a Sack, and in the night with great silence throwne in the Sea, haveing stones made fast thereto to sinck them. Theis are the punishments (amonge the rest) wherewith Malefactors are putt to Death att Constantinople.

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For smaller Crimes, they are beaten on the feete (some terme it Drubbinge) [...] One punishment more I saw inflicted on Two weomen, the youngest of them for playing the Harlott and the elder for being her Bawde. They were sett on Asses backs, their faces all besmeared with Soote, dirt and filth, their heads, necks, sholders and bosomes over layed and hung round with the Intrailes, gutts and garbidge of some Sheep or other beasts, with the Excrament adhearinge, and in this sweet pickle they were conducted through the Streets of Gallata, etts.


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The 19th. May, 1620. Departinge from Yenheekeoy, [Page 61] wee entred Mountaines deserts and thick woods, where usually repaire Troopes of robbers to the spoyle of Passengers, by reason of which my Lord caused every one to goe on foote with their Armes, to bee the more ready if occasion should offer, but God bee praised, there was none.

Att six miles end wee came to Yelkeeoy, a village of poore Christians, and four miles further, to Cappeekeoy an other poore village, where is to bee seene a great, high, ruinous Arch of brick, by reporte built by Allexander. Betwene theis two villages, wee mett a man beatinge on a drumme, sett there of purpose to advise travellers whether there bee theeves or noe, hee abideinge in the most daungerous place of all.

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The 21st. May, 1620. His Lordshipp went to visitt the Beglerbeg att a howse hee had within the Cittie, where, when hee came, after salutations on each side, there was Sherbett brought for them and the rest. It is a drincke made of Sugar, Juice of Lemmons and water, with which the better sort mingle Amber, Muske, Roses, Violetts, etts., this beinge the ordinary drincke of great men, their Lawe forbiddinge them wyne ; the poorer sort drinke only waters 3

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The said Ambassader was received into the Cittie with a very great, rich and warlike shewe of horse and foote, the latter all Janizaries, whereof some bands or Companies had each man a whole compleat Leopards Skinn over his shoulder, whereon he carried his peece or Gunn [...] The 22nd. May, 1620. Beinge two miles in our way from Sophia, wee were overtaken by a Chiawsh and twenty Jannizaries with nine waggons, bound for Buda, [Page 66] The Beglerbeg sent a Couple of Soldiers alonge with us to conducte us in our way. Att noone wee dined in the feilds nere some stony hills, haveinge gone about ten myles. After dinner wee departed, and entringe among Rockie Hills wee were overtaken with rayne, where wee had not only a dangerous passage by reason of Theeves, but very troublesome and wearisome by reason of the rockey, stony way and durtie weather.

The 23rd. May, 1620.Wee came to Zarekeeoy (8 miles), a greate Towne [...] In this Towne was a small Castle, and little river. Also, from under a Hill close by, there issueth such a Spring of Water that is imedeatly sufficient to drive a good Mill.

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[...]my Lord would not make use of it in wronging the poore Christians thereby, for the aforesaid Officers would perforce take from them what they listed, as sheepe, henns, milke, butter, etts., without giveinge anie pennie for it but blowes. Wee came to a village called Curut Chisme (15 miles), as much as to say a drye fountaine. There beinge one abandoned of water, as the village was of Inhabitants, by reason of the great tax imposed on them by the Governor of the Province, which they being not able to pay, fledd for feare of farther miserys, the Turks grindeing their verie bones, for all the benefitt poore Christians can make by [Page 68] the ground, their Cattell and Labour is hardly enough to supply the Governors impositions layed upon them, and to finde them bread, soe that they are in worse case then Slaves.

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The 25th. May, 1620. The rest of the way, although not soe dangerous and mountainous, yett altogeather soe stonie and dirtie, even to Nice it selfe. Heere is a bridge called Nicea (20 miles), and a River by that name over which the bridge lyeth A Castle none of the best, and a paire of greate old fower square ruinated Brick walls.


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The 27th. May, Anno 1620. Wee past by Paracheeno (6 miles), a small village, and from thence four miles further to a bigg river without a Bridge, soe that wee spent four howres att least in passinge our selves and necessaries , and soe came to Yagola (10 miles), where is another Palanca, or wooden fence : heere wee pitched for this night.

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The 31st. May, 1620. My Lord went to visitt the Caddee which is a Justice amongst the Turkes, where haveinge stayed one hower, hee departed, and went through the Cittie to the River side, where takeinge boate, wee past over and backe againe for recreation.

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The river is abundant in fish, as Sturgeons, Carpes, Pikes, etts., which are soe cheape as is almost incredible.

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The manner of theis poore Bulgarians as farr as I could learne, is the Men generally Labourers, cloathed in white cloth, the weomen for the most part in Russett. The Virgins goe in theire haire, which hangeth downe behinde handsomely plaited, adding thereunto other haire to increase its length, alsoe upon theire heads and about their necke they have a great many shahees and other [Page 77] peeces of silver and brasse, which, by makeinge little holes in them, they sowe and weave together ; Alsoe in theire Eares great earings of silver, whereof some weigh att least fower ounces the paire. They goe in their smocksleeves, which are very wide and wrought, although not very fine, and barefooted. The married weomen differ in this ; they weare a linnen cloth plaited which hangeth downe behinde over the tresse of theire haire. Att our passage through any village, theie would stand readie with hott Cakes, many of them, for they make noe bread but when they have occasion to use it, bakeing it in the Embers. Also milke sweete and sowre, fresh cheese, butter, Eggs, etts., being brought to us by the youngest and prettiest wenches, among them : and if wee lodge neere any of theis villages, after they had brought us of theire provisions, then would they gather together younge Weomen and Children, and holding hand in hand in a round, they would daunce [Page 78] and sing very merrily, although with noe greate melodie. Theire Language neither Turkish nor Greeke, but like the Russian, for wee had a Russe- which served for our Interpreteur hereabouts.

[...]The 9th. June, 1620. From our aforesaid feild lodginge wee came by Noone to a great Towne called Valliano (10 miles) where by a Rivers side, which had two bridges, my Lord pitched his tent. Att our entrance into the Towne were twoe men on stakes throwne downe, halfe eaten with Doggs and Crowes. The Caddee sent us twenty men to watch with us all night, the place being somewhat dangerous for Theeves. Heere wee had Cherries at a farthinge a pound. The 10th. June, 1620. Att twenty miles end wee tooke upp our lodginge in the Feilds. This dayes travell proved some what easie, in regard the day was not very hott of it selfe, and the next, our waie beinge through shadie woods [Page 79] all that dale, ascendinge and descendinge pleasant mountains which exceeded all others that ever I sawe for height and beautie, not steepie, but gentlie riseinge by degrees, the Topps being as good ground as the bottome and as firtill, these mightie Hills beinge full of prettie swellings, aboundinge with springs from the foote to the head, and Rivers in all the valleyes which run into the lowermost vallies of all.

Towards the end, wee descended a hill much more steepie then the rest, over against which was a huge mountainous Rock of an incredible height and steepienesse, betwene both which runne a River with a Stone bridge, by which wee found such quantitie of good ripe Strawburryes as none of our Companie ever sawe the like, soe that a man might gather them by handfuUs in a manner, Alsoe manie wilde [Page 80] Apple and Cherrie Trees. I doe remember that in a parcell of the Countrey wee past, the ground was neere covered with a kind of wilde redd rose of a perfect good smell and coulour, but single, growinge close to the ground on little Spriggs, Whether it was this day or noe I am not sure.

The 11th. June, 1620. Wee came to the River of Dreena (8 miles), which runneth into Saba, formerly mentioned, beinge a stones cast over, very swifte and cleire, noe bridge, soe wee were ferried over by boate.

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The 17th June, 1620. Wee came to Coneetza (8 miles) a good Towne, before which runneth a prettie River named Neretria cleire, greenish and verye swift, makeinge a great Noyse as it passeth among the Hills. [...]wee crost it by a bridge, then lefte it and began to ascend an exceedinge highe Mountaine and steepy, soe that in divers places were rayles of wood, that Horses with Carriage might not fall and perrish [...] Betwene theis twoe is a little valley, wherein is a little village (15 miles), and two little Rivers, which comeinge contrary wayes, meete, and both together sincke [Page 84] right downe among the gravell. I could not learne whereabouts they rise againe.

The 19th. June, 1620. Wee dyned by a great Lake, [Page 85] the way soe stoney and rockey that wee past with a great deale of trouble. Att night wee rested in a Cane neere a River side, of a marvelous slowe motion. Noe water from the lake to this place, heere being also a fountaine by the Cane.

[...]Wee were noe sooner past it, but wee entred into Christendome, then seeminge to bee in a new World, such was the [Page 86] alteration wee found not only in the Inhabitants, but also in the Soyle ; for, for three dayes before, wee sawe nothinge but rockey, barren, stoney ground, scarce any Corne, tree, or greene thing to bee perceived, excepting in the vallies. But heere it was otherwise. For a man hath scarcely seene, or could immagine a more fertill peece of ground or delightsome prospect, for of the very stones, of which there are aboundance, being a great hindrance to any soyle, they turned them by their Industrie to as great a furtherance and benefitt by makeinge of them pertitions, like walls, instead of hedges. And the feilds are soe well manured that it is impossible almost it could bee putt to better use that waie ; for in the Middst of their Cornefeilds (they being then reapinge), were rancks in the Furrowes of Olive trees, Pomgranett Trees, Pines and figg trees, And this even to the gates of Spalatra, beinge about three miles from the marke aforementioned. It lyeth on the Sea side, here abouts beinge many ruines of Castles and buildings, and many watch Towers on the hills alongst the sea Coast.

[Mundy's route in Italy]


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The 2nd. July, 1620. Crossinge a Gulfe wee came to the Cape of Istria (50 miles), and eighteen miles farther, wee passed betwene a little Island and the Mayne, there being a prettie harbour with a little Towne; The 3rd. July, 1620. Towards night, the wynde comeing faire, wee sett saile from Rovigno, and the next day by noone, cuttinge over a gulfe, wee came to the Cittie of Venice, and entred by St. Jno. Delio [...] [Page 91] Lastly to Canalregio where wee stayed and landed all our stufife att a verie faire howse, which John Clarke had provided, and most richly furnished with hangings, bedds, tables, all rich, and curious chaires, linnen, aboundance of plate and necessaries, the howse beinge as curious within as it was faire without, the Chimnye peeces of fine marble, beinge statues of Godds and Goddesses, all of most excellent Carved worke, which did wonderfully adorne the roomes.

[Page 97]

The Bridge of Rioalto consistinge of one Arch, haveing two rowes of dwellings on it, a faire way in the midle, and two wayes on the backsides, beinge Shopps of severall wares and trades, of which there are fowre Rowes, that is to say two rowes, on each side of the midle way one, and one on each back way. Moreover, the great number of other stone bridges throughout the Cittie, and faire Channells of hewen stone with a passage on either side, soe that you may goe to any howse or place throughout the Cittie by land or water. The multitude of Gondolls or Ferrie boats, the Curiositie of keepinge them, haveinge Tilts of black Cloth, with very curious handsome seats within, ordinarily rowed or skulled by one man, whoe standeth upright neere the Sterne of the boate, sometymes by two, three and fower [...] [Page 98] The 4th. August, Anno 1620. Wee departed from Venice in a passage boate of Padoa att i liver, or 8d. per man, which boates, after our comeinge into the River, are drawne with horses.

[Page 99]

Att three of the clock in the afternoone wee came to the Cittie of Padoa (25 miles), and lodged att the Starr in Piazza de la Paglia, at five livers per man per daye. This Cittie is seven miles in Compasse, but within are many voyd places and ruynes. It is walled about with Two walls. In the markett place is a Hall of neere 100 yards longe and about 35 broad to heere lawe suites.

[Page 101] The 7th. August, 1620. Mr. Randoll Syms tooke his leave and returned to Venice, and wee proceeded to Villa Nova, a Towne where wee dyned..Cittie of Verona and lodged att the Cavalettee. This Cittie is faire and great, very famous and auntient, where is to bee scene an Amphitheater, part of the Romaine monuments, of an Ovall forme, one third of a mile in Compasse without side.

[Page 104]

The 9th. August, 1620. Att Evening wee came to Brescia (15 miles), a faire Cittie and verye stronge, with a good Castle, which is noe more then needs ; it standing soe neare the Spanish Dominions Wee dyned att the signe of the Tower, a very faire Hosteria or Innel To bee noted, as well in this Cittie as also before wee came neere it, wee saw many people with great Wenns or swellings under their throats, as bigg as two fists, which some say is ocasioned by drinckinge the snowe water that continuallie cometh downe the mountaines. From thence [Page 105] wee came to Orsovechio, a little Towne, and lay att the Spred Eaglet The l0th. August, 1620. From Orsovechio wee past by Orsonovo (2 miles), a very strong walled and well kept Town: from thence, over the River Olio (1 1/2 miles) by boate. From Venice hither wee had extraordinary pleasaunt travellinge, the way plaine, as was all the Countrie hereabouts, Corne feilds and pleasant meadows continually on either side. Amidst their Corne, fruite trees in Rancks, and att the foote of them againe are vines which Creep upp into the said trees. Then take they the vine branches of the one tree, and twist them with the vyne branches of the next, and of that which is the next to it, soe that the Trees, through meanes of the vines, seeme to daunce hand in hand all over the feild. Other vynes then theis they have not hereabouts that I could see ; also many prettie brookes and Rilletts runninge every waie, with divers Townes That I have not named. From the River wee came to Sumseenee (1 1/2 miles), a walled Towne under the Spaniard; then to Crema (5 miles), a walled Towne of the Venetians.

[Page 107]

The 12th. August, 1620. Goeinge, wee past by the Castle, accounted one of the strongest in Christendome: Soe crossed over the River Biufalore, which runneth to [Page 108] the Cittie, wherein are great flatt bottomed Boates, which supply it with provision, fruites, etts. from the Countrye. [Page 109] The 14th. August, 1620. From Cheebas wee came to the Cittie of Turin (14 miles), the principall seate of the Duke of Savoy himselfe was now absent. Within two miles of the Cittie wee past a greate River by boate

[Mundy's route in France]


[Page 113]

The 18th. August, 1620. Wee began to ascend the Mountaine aforesaid, which wee found to be steepie and Rockey. Att three miles wee passed over a litle bridge which divideth Savoy from Piedmont, wee now entringe into Savoy. The ascent may bee about five miles. On the topp is a plaine of two miles and a halfe longe and a faire, cleire Lake of about a mile and a halfe in Compassed. [Page 117] All the Townes wee sawe among the Alpes (this and St. Johns excepted) were very poorely built and as poorely inhabited, beinge all Labourers of that little ground which lyes amonge the Rockey Mountaines, there lowe howses covered with greate Slates of stone, the poore people many of them haveing greate Wenns under their Chinns, ordinarily as bigg as two fists, but some of them as bigg as a mans headl Schamberly differs altogether, haveing faire, great, stronge buildings, comely people, beinge plentifull of all things and very populous, scituated in a valley with a pleasant peece of Countrey round about.

[Page 122]

The First September 1620. From Gean wee came to Sulitt (10 miles); from thence to San Benitt (4 miles); from thence to Chasteau Neufe (6 miles), where was a Castle, from thence to Gerseave (4 miles); and from thence to the Cittie of Orleaunce (10 miles). In this Cittie is a very faire stone bridge with shopps and buildings on it ; Alsoe the Image of the Maid of Orleaunce kneeling on the one side of the Image of our Lady, and the Kinge kneeling on the other side, all artificially cast in brasse.

[Page 123]

Heere were Coaches hyred for Paris att 4 livers 4 solz per man, and 1 solz per pound weight lumberment. The Boatemen that come downe from Rovana, as others that come downe the River, att their arrivall heere sell their boates, because they are not worth the labour to be carried backe against the streame, being but slightlie made. All the Countrey downe the River very pleasant and full of Citties, Townes, villages and buildings, meadowes, gardens, etts.

[Page 133]

The 11th. September, 1620. Unto the Towne of Marqueesa (8 miles) wee went all alonge on the Sea Coast, and in sight of England. From thence wee came to the stronge Towne of Callias (6 miles). Two miles before our arrivall, from a litle hill wee might see part of the Lowe Countries, as Grevelinge etts. Without the walls of Callaies are neere upon 1000 small Cottages standing in Ranck, though each Cottage is sepperate from th' other, servinge for labourers, Gardners and poore people. Att our entrance att the Gates our Gunns were taken from us by the Guards, but one hower after they were brought us to the Golden head, where wee lodged att an Englishmans. Heere is but one Churchy a faire Markett place, where is a Curious Towne built, guilt, and sett forth with pillars and Inventions, haveing many small bells which Chime att certaine howres, makeing also divisions of the quarters, halfes and whole howres. Wee had warning not to approach the walls or Bulwarks upon paine of Imprisonment and further punishment.

[Page 135]

The 14th. September, 1620. Mr. Lane hired a great Waggon for 3l. to Gravesend, whereon the Stuffe was Laden, and with it seaven Servants departed about eleven a Clock ; and that Evening wee came to Canterburie (12 miles), and lay att the Checker. Heere wee went to see the Cathedrall Church, being goodly to behold without side, adorned with three faire steeples, and within noe lesse beautifull, rich and curious, haveinge two galleries on high full of small pillars, multitude of windowes of coloured glasse, especially the lower great ones, noe lesse admirable and rich then the report goes of them.

[Page 137]

10. RELATION III. Other Voyages, Jotirnies, etts. occurringe since my arrival from Constantinople untill the tyme of my entertainement for East India, vizt.

March the 20th 1620. I went downe to my Freinds in the Countries, and the end of that Sommer I made a voyage to Seville in Spaine, with Pilchards (our Countrey Comoditie) for an Accompt of Mr. Richard Wyche, my Uncle, and Father. [Page 138] Wee departed London on Satterday night, and lay att Gravesend. Next day to Dover. On Monday wee crossed over to Deepe, and the Sonday following wee were att Y'ron in the kingdome of Spaine and Province of Guipiscoa or Biscay; Soe that in Seaven dayes wee went through all Fraunce from Deepe in Picardy or Normandy to Bayon in Gascony; haveing had very good way, good horses, faire weather, and short stages (of about four or five miles att the most). Soe that wee ordinarily exchaunged eighteen, nineteen, twenty horses a day, sometymes twenty-one, twenty-two, a very painfull imployment to one not accustomed for the first two or three dayes. In my opinion, there is better accomodation for post [Page 139] rideinge in this Kingdome (and more frequently used) then in any other place. In our way wee came allso to Burdeaux etts.

[Page 140]

Heere is a very faire River, many pleasant and artificiall fountaines, Groves of Trees, varieties and store of the best fruites, the fairest Place or Placa, that I have }^ett scene in Spaine, built four square with uniformitie, round about upon pillars of Stone (as are [Page 141] many of the Streets) in which, att feastivall tymes, they baite their bulls with men, run their horses, etts. publique sports and pastimes, which are performed heere with more varietye and better invention then I have scene els where, especially for Bull baiteinge, shewes and daunces on Corpus Christi day etts. And heere I remained about four monethes, and then returned to Sansebastians to take my passage in the Margett, Mr. Robert Moulton for England.

[Page 143]

Haveinge remained a while att Home, I made a voyage to St. Maloes in Brittaine, a place of very great Strength and traffique, there being the most, the fairest and biggest Shipping, that I thinck are in any other port of Fraunce. The Sea is reported heere att high springe to rise from lowe water to high Sea, about thirteen or fourteen fathum, whereas on our owne Coast att the same tyme, it doth not flowe above six or seven, which seemeth very strange, being they are but thirty-five or forty leagues distant. Also, notwithstandinge the extraordinary strength of the place, being built on a Rock, strongly walled, fortefied and guarded with great vigillancie, there are twenty-four mungrell Doggs.

This is a selection from the original text


death, departure, sustenance, travel

Source text

Title: The Travels of Peter Mundy, Vol-I

Author: Peter Mundy

Editor(s): Lt.-Col. Sir Richard Carnac Temple

Publisher: The Haklyut Society

Publication date: 1913

Original compiled c.1628-1667

Place of publication: Cambridge

Provenance/location: This text was transcribed from images available at Internet Archive: Original compiled c.1628-1667

Digital edition

Original author(s): Peter Mundy

Original editor(s): Lt.-Col. sir Richard Carnac Temple EDITOR OF 'a geographical ACCOUNT OF COUNTRIES ROUND THE BAY OF BENGAL.'

Language: English


Texts collected by: Ayesha Mukherjee, Amlan Das Gupta, Azarmi Dukht Safavi

Texts transcribed by: Muhammad Irshad Alam, Bonisha Bhattacharya, Arshdeep Singh Brar, Muhammad Ehteshamuddin, Kahkashan Khalil, Sarbajit Mitra

Texts encoded by: Bonisha Bhattacharya, Shreya Bose, Lucy Corley, Kinshuk Das, Bedbyas Datta, Arshdeep Singh Brar, Sarbajit Mitra, Josh Monk, Reesoom Pal

Encoding checking by: Hannah Petrie, Gary Stringer, Charlotte Tupman

Genre: India > non-fiction prose > travel narratives and reports

For more information about the project, contact Dr Ayesha Mukherjee at the University of Exeter.