A Story about the East Indies


Treats of the Dominions of Johore, its ancient and present State occasioned by a Revolution.

THE Territories of Johore reached from to Point Romano, which is the southernmost Promonotory on the Continent of Asia, it lying but one Degree to the Northward of the AEquator, about three Leagues from Johore River, in Length about 100 Leagues, and in the broadest Place about 80.

THE Inhabitants are lazy, indolent, perfidious and cruel. . . .[p.94]

In Religion they are heretical Majometans, and are supplied with Priests from Surat; but the Seids are in most Esteem among them. They are great Lovers of Praying and Preaching, and frequent their Mosques very often, and look very devout; but their Practices are the most irreligious and immoral of any People I know.

In Anno 1695, their King was a Youth of twenty Years of Age, and being vitiously inclined, was so corrupted by Adulation and flagitious Company, that he became intolerable. I went to Johore Lami at that Timne, to traffick with this Subjects, and some China Men, with a Cargo proper for their Turn, and, according to Custom, went to compliment his Majesty with a Present, in which was a Pair of screw-0barrelled Pistols. He desired me to prove them with a Shot, to try how far it would penetrate a Post that was at the Gate, which I did, and he much admired how so little Powder should have Strength to force a Ball so far in the Wood, and begged some Powder and Ball, which I gave him, and the next Time he went abroad, he tried, on a poor Fellow on the Street, how far they could carry a Ball into his Flesh, and shot him through the Shoulder.

He was a great Sodomite, and had taken many of his Orankays or Nobles Sons, by Force into his Palace for that abominable Service. A Moorish Merchant, who was a Freighter on board my Ship, had an handsome Boy to his Son, whom the King one [p.95] Day saw, and would needs have him for a Catamite. He threatned the Father, that if he did not send him with good Will, he would have him by Force. The poor Man had taken an House close by our Ship, and immediately came with his Son on board, imploring my Protection, which I promised him. He had not been half an Hour on board, till a Guard came in a Boat to demand him. I would suffer none to enter by the officer, and an Interpreter for the Portugueze Language. The Officer told me his Errance, and, in an huffing Manner, threatned me, if I protected him. I made him no Answer, but taught him to leap into the River, and bid the Interpreter tell the King, that, if he offered the least Violence to any that belonged to me, I would fire down his Palace about his Ears. He had never been contradicted before, much less threatned, and he sent for his Orankays to know if I was a King or no. They told him that I was on board of my Ship, and that I would prove a dangerous Enemy, if provoked, and begg'd, that his Majesty would remove to a Village about twenty Miles up the River, and stay till our Ship was gone, which Favour he willingly granted us, and so we traded with some more Security, but were continually in Arms for fear of a Surprize.

He continued his insupportable Tyranny and Brutality for a Year or two after I was gone, and his Mother, to try if he could be broke off that unnatural Custom of converse [p.96] with Males, perswaded a beautiful young Woman to visit him, when he was a Bed, which she did, and allured him with her Embraces, but he was so far from being pleased with her Conversation, that he called his black Guard, and made them break both her Arms, for offering to embrace his royal Person. She cried, and said it was by his Mother's Order she came, but that was no Excuse.

Next Morning he sent a Guard to bring her Father's Head, but he being an Orankay did not care to part with it, so the Tyrant took a Lance in his Hand, and sware he would hae it; but, as he was entring at the Door, the Orankay past a long Lance through his Heart, and so made an End of the Beast. . . . [p.97]

SOURCE: A New Account of the East Indies, Being the Observations and Remarks Of Capt. Alexander Hamilton, Who spent his Time there From the Year 1688 to 1723. Edinburgh, 1727. Volume II, pp. 94–97.

CITATION: If you cite this Web page, please use the following citation:
Rictor Norton (Ed.), "A Story about the East Indies" Homosexuality in Eighteenth-Century England: A Sourcebook. 12 July 2013 <http://rictornorton.co.uk/eighteen/indies.htm>.

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