Whenever they arrived at a town, they were sure to be expelled from it with a sound beating. They represented themselves as “poor natives of Siam,” and the falsehood of their story was probably recognised at once. At length they were sent to Nankin with other criminals, where they were condemned to lose their thumbs and to be whipped. The latter part of the sentence was immediately put in execution with such severity that two of the party died of it. Here they met a Russian, “ who,” says Pinto, “understood Chinese as well as we.” From Nankin, of which our author gives a copious description, the Portuguese were sent to Pekin, travelling the greater part of the way by canals. On the route they met with Christians, the descendants of those who had been converted more than a century before by Matthew Escaudel, a Hungarian missionary. They also met with a daughter of Thome Perez, the unfortunate ambassador who had been detained in China some years before. Pinto's observations with respect to the Chinese are lively and accurate. He remarks the multitude of those who dwell upon the rivers. Their mode of rearing water-fowl; the good order observed by the common people; the strictness with which industrious habits are enforced; the regulations of their markets; their mode of hatching eggs by artificial heat; their eating with chop-sticks; with many other particulars, are reported with the exactness of an eye-witness. In fine, he observes, “I dare boldly say, if my testimony be worthy of credit, that in one and twenty years' space, during which time, with a world of misfortunes, labour, and pain, I traversed the greatest part of Asia, as may appear by this my discourse, I had seen in some countries a wonderful abundance of several sorts of victuals and provisions which we have not in Europe; yet, without speaking what each of them may have in particular, I do not think that in all Europe there is so much as there is in China alone. And the same may be said of all the rest wherewith heaven hath favoured this climate; as well for the temperature of the air as that which con

cerns the policy, riches, and greatness of their estate: but that which gives the greatest lustre unto it is the exact observation of justice; for this country is so well ruled, that it may justly be envied by all others in the world.” This tribute of praise to Chinese justice is singularly candid in one who had so often felt its severe application. The criminals reached Pekin, chained three and three together, “ where for their welcome they had at their first dash thirty lashes apiece given them.” The nine surviving Portuguese, all chained together, were at length conducted to the hall of audience, to which they had appealed, to hear their final sentence, and were overjoyed to find that they were condemned to only a year's hard work at the reparations of Quansy. Pinto gives us a minute account of Pekin, where he resided two months and a half, and a description of which, in Chinese, he tells us he brought home with him to Portugal. He also impudently affirms that he read it. The Portuguese had served about eight months of their captivity, when news arrived that the king of Tatary, with a host of 1,800,000 men, had attacked Pekin, and that a part of the invading army was advancing against Quansy. This place was soon reduced, and the Portuguese slaves were led off by the conquerors. An accident soon brought them into notice. The castle of Nixiamcoo resisted all the efforts of the Tatars; when Jorge Mendez, the most resolute of the captives, boasted that he could take it. The Tatar general embraced his offer; and Mendez, with two other Portuguese, led a great army of Tatars to the assault. Their courage triumphed, and the Portuguese were thenceforward held in the highest honour in the camp. The Tatar general declared “ that they were almost as resolute as those of Japan.” When our adventurers were led before the king of Tatary, he began by demanding whence they came ; to which they replied that their country was called Portugal, that the king thereof was exceedingly rich and mighty, and that from thence to Pekin was at least three years' WOL. II. R

voyage. At this answer the king, not knowing that the world is so large, testified much surprise, and repeatedly asked, Pricau ? pricau ? that is, How far? how far? Being assured that it was a distance of three years' voyage, he observed, “that there either must be much ambition, or little justice, in the country of these people, since they go so far to conquer other lands.” Being frustrated in his attempt on China, he thought fit to retreat, the Portuguese still following in his train. At a town called Quanginau, the king was visited by the talapicor of Lechuna, who, Pinto informs us, is their pope. This personage granted to the inhabitants of Quanginau, in recompense for the liberal reception they gave him, that they might be all priests; and empowered them to give bills of exchange on heaven to all who were willing to pay them for that accommodation. What our author tells us of the talapicor seems to suit very well with the grand lama of Thibet. The city of Lechuna is, he informs us, “the chiefest of the religion of the Gentiles; and such it may be as Rome is amongst us.” The Portuguese, having obtained permission to depart, travelled with the ambassadors of Cochin China to the sea-side, where they hoped to find a ship ready to sail to Malacca. In this hope, however, they were disappointed, and were obliged to engage a small vessel to carry them to Liampoo. But they quarrelled among themselves on the voyage, and behaved so outrageously that the captain of the vessel abandoned them on a desolate island, from which they were afterwards picked up by a pirate; and here their lawless career commenced again. Their first adventure was an engagement with a pirate, in which five of the eight surviving Portuguese lost their lives. The junk in which the other three were embarked escaped from the fight with little injury; but a violent storm coming on, they were in momentary expectation of going to the bottom. The pirate who commanded the vessel ran for the Lequios or Loochoo Islands; but the wind drove him from his course. At length he saw land with fires on it; and running towards

the shore, found anchorage in good shelter. Some of the natives soon came aboard, and they found that they had arrived at Tanixumaa, one of the islands of Japan. The nautaquim, or governor of the island, began with interrogating the Portuguese respecting the wonders of their country. “The first thing he propounded was, how he had learned from the Chinese and Lequios that Portugal was far richer and of a larger extent than the whole empire of China; which we confirmed unto him. The second, how he had likewise been assured that our king had upon the sea conquered the greatest part of the world; which also we averred to be so. The third, that our king was so rich in gold and silver, as it was held for most certain that he had above two thousand houses full of it even to the very tops; but thereunto we answered that we could not truly say the number of the houses, because the kingdom of Portugal was so spacious, so abounding with treasure, and so populous, as it was impossible to specify the same.” One of the Portuguese, named Diego Zeinoto, gave to the governor an arquebuss, which the Japanese imitated with such skill, that in 1556, when our author visited these islands a second time, they were said to have thirty thousand stand of fire-arms. The king of Bungo, wishing to see the strangers, Mendez Pinto was sent to him; and here an accident occurred which had nearly proved fatal to our hero. He amused himself occasionally with shooting birds; and the natives, who were ignorant of the composition of gunpowder, used to ascribe the effect of the gun to sorcery. One day the son of the king of Bungo took up the gun, and charging it to the muzzle, fired at a tree; but the gun burst, and tore the prince's hand in a dreadful manner. The people, supposing that the prince had been killed by the magical arts of Pinto, called out for vengeance. Our poor adventurer had no expedient to save his life, but to play the doctor. He looked as confident as possible; and “because the hurt of the right thumb,” he says, “ was most dangerous, I began with that, and gave it seven stitches;

whereas, peradventure, if a surgeon had dressed him, he would have given it fewer.” Covering the wound with tow dipped in the whites of eggs, he bound it up close, and in twenty days the prince was quite cured. Pinto's medical reputation procured him presents to the value of 1500 ducats. The Chinese pirate, with whom they had arrived, being now ready for sea, the Portuguese set sail for Liampoo, where they arrived in safety. When Pinto and his companions told their countrymen residing there of the wealth of “the new land of Japan which they had just discovered,” and of the great market that might be found there for foreign merchandise, the money-making enthusiasm inflamed by this news was so great, that in fifteen days no fewer than nine junks were ready to sail to Japan, most of them ill provided for the voyage, and without pilots acquainted with the navigation. Seven of these vessels were lost in vhe passage, and with them perished 600 persons; and merchandise was sunk to the value of 300,000 crowns. The junk which carried our author was thrown on the rocks near the great Lequio : the greater part of the crew were drowned, only twentyfour escaping, among whom were some women. The islanders seem to have been well acquainted with the iniquities of the Portuguese. When these were brought before the governor, he demanded of them—“I would fain know why your countrymen, when they took Malacca, impelled thereto by extreme avarice, killed our people so unmercifully P” Nevertheless they were about to be dismissed, when a Chinese merchant accused them of piracy, and affirmed “ that it was the custom of the Portuguese to play the spies in a country under pretence of trading, and then to make themselves masters of it, like robbers, putting all to the sword they met withal.” This charge wrought so powerfully on the king's mind, that he ordered the Portuguese to be quartered, and their limbs to be hung up on the public roads. When this sentence was made known, the Portuguese women testified their affliction in so violent a manner as

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