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The Voyage of Francois Pyrard of Laval to the East Indies, the Maldives, the Moluccas and Brazil
Francois Pyrard de Laval
1611
translated into English in 1887 from the third French edition of 1619 by Albert Gray assisted by H.C.P. Bell

Vol. 3 Appendix B

Notices of the exiled kings of the Maldives
by Albert Gray

In the course of his narrative, Pyrard makes reference on several occasions to the family of titular Kings of the Maldives who resided in India under Portuguese protection.

By the aid of the Portuguese archives at Lisbon and Goa, supplemented by other authorities, we are enabled to follow the fortunes of these exiled royalties during the century which elapsed between the revolution that cost them their throne and the death of the last representative of this legitimist line.

Conversion excludes Hassan from throne
They were in no sense Portuguese captives, for the first exile lost his throne fairly enough in an internal revolution, and threw himself upon the protection of the Portuguese. When he afterwards became a christian and married a Portuguese wife, he forfeited any chances of restoration that might have been hoped from a counter-revolution. The Portuguese, after one endeavour to replace him, saw that it was impossible to impose a christian king upon the Maldivians, and thereafter merely used the family claims as a lever to enforce the necessary supply of coir for their fleets.

The individual princes on their part eked out inglorious, and not always reputable, lives as pensioners in the foreign land of which by intermarriages they became half-citizens. Somewhat similar cases have occurred in the history of British India; and the despatches quoted before would probably find their counterpart in many filed in the foreign departments of our Indian presidencies.

Pyrard, whose account is founded upon the tradition of his time, relates that about fifty years before, a certain king Hassan, being hard pressed by a rival, was 'inspired of God to quit all', and secretly departed to Cochin with his wife and certain of his family.

From the date of his conversion, which took place in 1552, we shall be not far wrong in assuming that the revolution occurred in 1550 or 1551. When he became a christian, he was twenty years of age, a fact which seems to indicate that youth may have been his chief incapacity.

Hassan (Dom Manoel) baptised by St. Francis Xavier
However that may be, he was baptised a christian under the name of Dom Manoel, and it is noteworthy that he was received into the Catholic Church by no less a personage than the Apostle of the Indies, St. Francis Xavier.

The Jesuit historian Bartoli, one of the people of importance in their day with whom Mr. Browning has 'parleyings', thus relates the conversion (Asia, iii, 201-2):
'There sprang up, I know not why, between the Maldivians and their Lord, a youth of twenty years, discord and war, and he, finding himself unable to withstand the force of the conspiracy, saved his life, though he could not his kingdom, by flight to Cochin, where he trusted to obtain his reinstatement by aid of the Portuguese arms.

'The fathers received him into their house; and, by the example of their living, which is ever a more potent influence than words, and by that which St. Francis Xavier, who opportunely arrived there, told him of God - and more, that which the saint told God of him, praying Him to give him that spirit whereby a new realm would be gained to the Church - at length the saint conquered, and having instructed him as far as needful in the divine mysteries, solemnly baptised him.'

Padre Lucena says that this conversion 'filled with joy the whole of India, exciting hopes that after the head, all the members would be converted.' The Rev. H. Coleridge adds that 'this king was a witness to one of Francis's miraculous elevations in the air while saying Mass' (Life and Letters of S. Franc. Xav., ii, 65).

Jesuit support for the converted king
It would seem that the king submitted to conversion as a means of gaining Portuguese support, the Jesuits of Cochin promising their aid. 'Some of the fathers,' continues Bartoli, 'were then ready to sail with a Portuguese armada, and with the converted king, to the Maldives, and, as soon as he should be reinstated, to reduce the inhabitants to the Faith. But because, in the interests of the Crown of Portugal, it was not worth while to have these islands tributary, being poor in spices and gold, the governors of India were not inclined to give the king effectual aid.'

The expedition was, nevertheless, sent, but on terms, as Pyrard states, that Dom Manoel should not accompany it. The first expedition was, as Pyrard relates, disastrous to the Portuguese: but in the second, probably about 1554, they took Male', after a battle in which the rival king Ali was slain.

Treaty with Portuguese
Experiencing the difficulties attending the subjection of the whole of the scattered kingdom, they prudently assembled the chiefs for a conference, at which it was arranged that the islands should be governed by a native regent, who should be subject to the control of the Portuguese commandant, and who should rule in the name of the exiled king, Dom Manoel. This condition of affairs was adhered to for upwards of ten years.

Rebellion of Mohamed and Hassan from Utheem
At this period the Maldivians again rose in rebellion, and, under the leadership of the two noble brothers, the elder of whom was the father of the sultan of Pyrard's time, succeeded, with the aid of a party of Malabars, in taking the Portuguese fort and putting its occupants to the sword.

Dom Manoel grants trading rights in Maldives
During the ten years of Portuguese occupation it seems that Dom Manoel was enabled, by the treaty arrived at with the native chiefs, to exercise to some extent his sovereign rights. In the archives of Goa is still preserved a copy of certain letters patent granted by him to Manoel da Silveira d'Araujo, bestowing upon him the privilege of three voyages to the Maldives as chief captain.

The document, including the titles of the grantor, is couched in the approved language of Portuguese officialism:

'Dom Manoel, by the grace of God King of the Maldive islands, and of the three patanas of Suvadhu, and of the seven islands of Pullobay (Chagos), of the conquest and navigation of all the coasts of Sumatra, and of the Strait of Manacuma, etc. - To all to whom this my letter shall be shown, I make known and give to understand that as of right I think fit and am hereby pleased to grant unto Manoel da Silveira d'Araujo, Cavalier fidalgo of the household of the King of Portugal, three voyages as chief captain to my Maldive islands, in like manner as to preceding chief captains, with the customary gains and profits thereof, which voyages he may enter upon after Jorge de Sousa Pereira, now captain of this city of Cochin, shall have made and concluded the two voyages which he purchased for money from Janebra de Torres, formerly wife of Bastiao Rebelo, and now with God, and which he shall have in precedence of all others.

I think fit, therefore, that the said Manoel da Silveira shall have these three, which I now grant, before any other person to whom the like grant shall be made (saving only the two purchased by Jorge de Sousa from the said widow, the same being within my grant), having respect to the fact that he slew the robber of Baara, 'who assumed the title of king of the islands, and dispossessed me of my realm and estate, to which I should hardly have been restored, had not the said Manoel da Silveira killed him and dealt with him so valiantly as he did, as also all the rest concerned in the rebellion, whom also he slew: all which deeds cost him much trouble and blood of his own body with five deadly spear wounds which crippled him, and which he received in battle with the said king and rebels: - as also for other services which he has done me and which I hope he may still in the future do...'

[He then proceeds to say that these three voyages and the two of Jorge de Sousa are to come at the end of the lease of the island trade which he has granted to one Anrique de Sousa, and concludes :]

'And I hereby command my regents and officers in the said islands that they receive and obey this letter without the exaction of any duty or tax whatever. Given in the city of Santa Cruz of Cochin under my seal. Ruy Correa wrote this the twenty-fifth of June, in the year of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ one thousand five hundred and sixty years (1560).'

The document is approved, sealed, and registered by the Viceroy at Goa, under date 24th Sept. 1561.

Pyrard states that when Dom Manoel fled to Cochin he took his Maldive wife with him, and that she too became a christian. According to Bartoli, he married 'a noble Portuguese lady', whose name does not transpire. Nothing more is heard of the Maldive wife, and, whether she had any children or not, it is probable that the only children recognised by the Portuguese were those of the second marriage.

His family consisted of three sons, Dom Francisco, Dom Joao, and Dom Pedro, and some daughters.

Eldest son, Dom Francisco
The eldest son, Dom Francisco, seems to have resided at Cochin with his father till about the year 1581. We learn from a despatch of the king of Spain to the viceroy, date 15th Feb. 1583, that the prince had written to request that his servants, Pero and Joao Garces, should be appointed respectively clerk of the factory and accountant of orphans at Cochin. The king directs that they should be so appointed for the space of three years from the next vacancies of those offices; but this is to be done only if the appointments do not of right belong to the town, and in that case some similar offices my be given to the applicants.

It was probably soon after that letter to the king of Spain, or about the year 1582, that Dom Francisco proceeded to Europe, where he was stabbed to death in a street brawl at Lisbon, but, owing to the loss of most of the royal despatches prior to 1585, we are without information as to the circumstances.

Dom Manoel dies after futile requests to conquer Maldives
Dom Manoel seems to have made repeated requests to the king of Spain for his reinstatement, but the viceroys set their faces against any further expeditions to the islands, and seem not to have communicated to him the king's replies to his letters. Thus, 'ever hoping to regain his own, he lived and grew old in privacy at Cochin; and finally, after the disgraceful end of his son, who was stabbed to death at the Court of Spain, in great affliction died.' The death of Dom Manoel can only be approximately fixed as having taken place in 1583. Assuming that Bartoli and Pyrard are right as to his age when he came to Cochin, he was but little over fifty at his death.

Whatever be the exact date of Dom Manoel's death, the news of it had reached Lisbon by the beginning of 1585, for on the 11th February of that year the king of Spain directs the viceroy, Dom Duarte de Menezes, to condole with the queen on the death of her husband, and to make proper provision for her and her daughters.

Second son, Dom Joao, inherits title
The heir-apparent, Dom Francisco, having been killed at Lisbon, Dom Manoel was now succeeded in the titular sovereignty of the Maldives by his second son, Dom Joao. This prince gave the Portuguese much trouble.

In a despatch dated the 10th Jan. 1587, the king thus addresses the viceroy: 'I regret to be informed by your letter of the unruly behaviour of the king of the Maldives, and the trouble he has given in the city of Cochin, where he is. I recommend you to correct his follies as they may display themselves, and to give orders that he may gather his revenues, provided he pays into my treasury 500 bahars of coir, as his father always did.

'And as you say that it would be convenient for my service to collect the revenues of these islands through the controller of the treasury at Cochin, and for me to pay to the king his share, you will inform me what amount of coir you have taken into my treasury for the use of the navy, as well as for the ships repaired there, for which compensation should be made to him.'

Again, on the 28th Jan. 1588: 'The king of the islands, in a letter he has written to me, complains of the inhabitants of the city of Cochin as not paying him due respect; and as I am informed of his follies and unruly conduct, which perhaps may be the cause of his treatment, I recommend you to remedy this in such manner as may leave no ground for complaint, and to warn him as to his follies, so that he shall demean himself according to his duties. As to his applications, I gave orders last year, as well as this, that he must send them to you, that so, aided by your information, I may send such replies as may be conducive to my interests.'

As time went on the young prince did not improve his conduct, and on the 6th February 1589, the king writes as follows: 'I am informed by you that the king of the Islands (Dom Joao) has married a sister of Antonio Teixeira de Macedo, who went from this kingdom in your company with the orphans, and that he has done so against your opinion: further, that owing to his excesses and misconduct in the married state, you did not give him the letter I directed to him by the armada of 1587, and that you thought it would be prejudicial to my service to correspond with him, unless he greatly mended his ways. In view of what you write I think it well done on your part not to have delivered my letter, and that you ought to endeavour to train this king, who, as you know, is very young, in all the affairs of my service, and also in those which will be serviceable to himself, in order that he may know how to govern well.'

On the 22nd February of the same year, 1589, the king again writes: 'The king of the Islands wrote by the ships of the past year, complaining that the Moors of Cannanor are absolute lords of the said islands, and that they gather their whole produce: and that Nicollao Petro, the Controller of the Treasury of Cochin, did not answer his protests with becoming respect, and in general complained that he was treated with scant courtesy.

'To this letter I thought it not fit to reply, seeing that you had informed me by letter of 23rd of November 1587 that he had married a sister of Antonio Teixeira de Macedo, who had gone from this kingdom in your company with the orphans, and was behaving in such manner and with such excesses that you had not thought it to my service to deliver to him the letter which I wrote to him that year. Wherefore I do not write to him by these despatches. And since I have already caused a despatch to be written to you requesting you to endeavour to train him in the affairs of my service, and the duties incumbent upon one in his position and of his name, I desire again to recommend this to you, and to request you to favour him when any reasonable opportunity occurs, at the same time giving him to understand that, owing to the bad reports which I have had of him, I do not think fit to reply to him, yet that I have given you instructions as above.'

This letter of paternal instruction is followed by another on the 8th March of the same year: 'Dom Joao, king of the Maldive islands, has sent me a message to the effect that you have, in my name, awarded to Dona Francisca de Vasconellos, his wife, who proceeded from this kingdom as one of the orphans in the year 1584, a pension of 500 pardaos annually for her life, to be received by her out of the tribute of the islands, which he is obliged to pay into my treasury, with a declaration that you will get this award confirmed by me within three years. He begs me that, having respect to his marriage with the said Dona Francisca, I shall be pleased to confirm the same, and further to increase the pension by 200 cruzados annually, in order to enable his wife to maintain herself suitably to her position.

'Inasmuch as in your letters of the past year, 1588, you do not mention the letter which I directed to be written to you, as to his misconduct towards his said wife, and as to his behaviour not being conformable to his duties and to the obligations of his rank, I deem it undesirable to yield to his request without information from you as to his present conduct; on receipt of such information I shall reply as befits my service. Until then, I think he should have the 500 pardaos which you have ordered to be paid for his wife's provision.'

'Great crimes' of Dom Joao and Dom Pedro
There is no further reference to the Maldive family in the despatches until the 12th January 1591, by which time it seems the young princes had removed from Cochin to Goa. The king now writes to the viceroy, Mathias d'Albuquerque: 'He (i.e. the preceding governor, M. de Sousa Coutinho) also writes that he had recently caused to be arrested at Goa the king of the Islands [Dom Joao] and the prince his brother [Dom Pedro] for the commission at Cochin and elsewhere of great crimes, meriting exemplary punishment, wherewith he has scandalized the whole of India; and that for a long time that king had quitted his wife; and that when he [the governor] sought to proceed against them, and to carry into execution such judgment as the High Court (Rellacao) of Goa should award, the judges intervened, saying that he could not do so before first giving me notice thereof, and that he therefore suspended proceedings until I gave such order as befitted my service: which was proper in consideration of the quality of the persons, - on which account, and on others, I approve of the suspension of execution on that king and his brother, although their misdeeds merit natural death, and I ordain that they be kept in prison separately and securely until my further pleasure be known, and that their indictments and the sentence upon them be sent to me with the despatches, that so I may see them and give such order as befits my service.

'I also confirm to the wife of the said king the 500 pardaos which the Viceroy Dom Duarte gave in my name, and direct you to give her as pension 200 more, making in all 700 pardaos a year on my account. This I direct out of respect to the information which I have of her necessities and upon other grounds.'

Dom Joao and Dom Pedro under 'honorary confinement' at Goa
What decision the Court of Spain, or, rather, the Casa da India, came to upon the case does not appear. By the next despatch referring to the princes, namely, that of 13th February 1597, it appears that during the intervening years they had been kept in honorary confinement at Goa, and that they were constantly demanding their freedom, and leave to return to Cochin. The king of Spain, however, directs that they be kept at Goa under the immediate surveillance of the viceroy.

The same orders are repeated in the despatch of 21st November 1598, addressed to the viceroy, Dom Francisco da Gama, wherein the king refers to the misdeeds of the brothers, formerly committed at Cochin, as having been 'so outrageous and scandalous that it were better not to speak of them'.

Death of Dom Joao
Owing, perhaps, to the hiatus which exists between the royal despatches contained in the Goa collection (Archivo Portuguez Oriental) and the Lisbon collection (Livro das Moncoes), now in course of publication, which commences with the year 1605, we cannot fix the date of the death of the titular king, Dom Joao.

Dom Filippe
It had occurred before the beginning of 1606, when the Portuguese, Dom Adrian de Gouveia, went to the Maldives: as we learn from Pyrard that this personage was the ambassador of the young king, Dom Filippe, whom our traveller afterwards, 1608-9, met at Goa as a youth of fifteen.

Gouveia's embassy bore no fruits, and its failure probably led the young king to write to the king of Spain a letter bearing date 18th December 1606, the contents of which we learn from the recital in the king's reply of 10th December 1607. He complains that the revenues from the islands, which in the time of his grandfather, Dom Manoel, and his father, Dom Joao, had amounted to 18,000 xeraphins, were now, owing to the negligence of the viceroys, reduced to 5,000; he begs the king to give him an honorary office, with the pay thereof, in order to maintain his position, and asks for his retainers four habits of the Order of Christ, with such pension as may seem fit to the king; for a marriage portion to his sister Dona Inez, he asks one of the fortresses, Sofala or Ormuz.

He further seeks that orders be given that no captain or 'vedor da fazenda' or other officials of Cochin, or elsewhere in Malabar, 'under pain of chastisement and suspension from office', be permitted to enquire into the merchandise brought from the islands by his vassals, and that the viceroy should equip an armada to bring the islands into greater obedience, that so he may acquire a greater revenue, and otherwise that he may be excused from further paying tribute under the treaty made with his grandfather.

His mother, at the same time, in consideration of the services of her father, Jeronymo Teixeira de Macedo, asks for a voyage (i.e. the privilege of sending a ship on private account) from China to Japan.

It is characteristic of the failure of the Portuguese to administer India effectively from Lisbon in those days, that the king's reply, dated a whole year after the petition, is simply a request for information as to the facts and for the viceroy's opinion as to the best course to adopt, and an instruction to keep the exiled prince quiet in the meantime.

Dom Filippe receives an honorary christian knighthood
The petition referred to was ultimately answered by the despatch of 4th November 1609, after the receipt of the requisite information from the Archbishop Menezes, then governor of India. Dom Filippe is to get one habit of Christ, and therewith a pension of 150 pardaos, payable out of the Courts of Ceylon. Dona Inez, his sister, is to be married to a fidalgo of quality, and to have as her portion one of the Canara fortresses, that is to say, her appointed husband is to have the captaincy of such fortress for three years.

As to his complaints about the revenue, the king recommends that the vedor da fazenda at Cochin be directed to take from the Maldive consignments only so much coir as is required for the public service, and to leave all the rest to the king, Dom Filippe, and that the viceroy should write to Adar-rajao (Ali Raja of Cannanor) not to meddle with the islands and property belonging to Dom Filippe, and that if the viceroy thinks proper he may send two or three 'fustas' to induce greater obedience on the part of Filippe's vassals, who at the same time are to be coaxed to do their duty rather than punished, as the latter course would only have the effect of estranging them.

Lastly, the pension of the queen mother, Dona Francisca, is to be raised from 700 pardaos per annum to 1,000, but without the grant of a voyage.

Legal dispute with Dom Pedro
As has been said, Pyrard made the acquaintance of Dom Filippe and his mother while at Goa (1608-10). They were then lodged in a fine house near the Jesuits' College, where he frequently visited them and entertained them with his talk about the Maldives. At that time, he says, there was a lawsuit pending in the courts of Goa between the young king and his uncle, Dom Pedro, who resided at Cochin. This prince was married to a half-caste lady of good birth and considerable property; so that he was well off, irrespective of his share of the Maldive tribute, which seems, however, to have been the subject of the litigation.

The king's despatch of November 1609 would, in ordinary course, arrive at Goa in May or June 1610, some months after Pyrard left. On being communicated to the young prince and his mother its terms were not acquiesced in. She pressed for the voyage to China, and he for a powerful armada to be sent to the Maldives.

On these demands being made to Lisbon, the king replies on the 28th March 1612, that Dom Filippe is to have 200 milreis pension with his habit of Christ; that the fortress of Daman, instead of one of Canara, is to be given for three years to the man who marries his sister, Dona Inez; that the pension of Dona Francisca is to be paid in silk, as she requests; that further pressure be put upon the Raja of Cannanor not to meddle with Dom Filippe's affairs; and that a trustworthy agent be sent to the de facto king of the Maldives to induce him, by threats of invasion, to a better fulfilment of the treaty; and, finally, that the captains and officials of Cochin and Malabar are not to issue passports on their own account for trade to the Maldives, as, by the queen mother's complaint, has been done.'

The forthcoming volumes of the Livro das Moncoes may give some further particulars of the life of the young halfcaste king.

Dom Filippe meets Pietro della Valle at Goa 1623
Meantime, the next notice of him at present available is found in the letters of the Roman traveller, Pietro della Valle, who, while at Goa in 1623, thus describes the feast of St. John the Baptist:
'The 24th June. For the feast of St. John, according to annual custom, the viceroy issued forth with many other Portuguese gentlemen on horseback, in masquerading dress, but without masques, two and two attired alike, or three and three.

'After hearing Mass at the Church of St. John, they proceeded down St. John's Street, which they are wont to call La Carriera de Cavalli, it being the finest open space in Goa. Here, after many companies of Canarin christians had passed with their banners, drums, and arms, many of them leaping and playing along the street, with their naked swords in their hands, all being on foot, at length all the cavaliers on horseback ran two careers, one downwards from St. Paul's Church toward the city, the other upwards; running matches, two and two or three and three, according to their similar attire, with their Moorish lances, and at last all came marching down from St. Paul in order. Which done, they all proceeded to the piazza of the viceroy's palace, where the festival ended.

'I went to see this sight in the said street of St. Paul, at the house of one whom they call the king of the Maldiva or Maladiva islands, which are an innumerable number of very small islets, almost all in one long, wide belt, joined together on the western side, not very far from the coast of India.

'Of these islands an ancestor of this man was actually king, but being driven from his country by his own people, he betook him to the Portuguese, and became a christian, in the hope of getting back to his own country and reigning there with their aid. But the Portuguese taking no steps in his behalf, he and his descendants remained thenceforth deprived of their kingdom, and with the empty title alone, which the Portuguese, having formed connections with them, still preserve to them; and since a number of merchant vessels come from these islands to the Portuguese ports, they compel them to pay a little tribute, as it were, to their legitimate lord, who thus (albeit the harbour officials, through whom the transaction is necessarily conducted, appropriate more than one half) draws at the present day about 3,000 crowns, and therewith supports himself.

'Similar fortune has befallen many other princes in India, who, trusting to the Portuguese, have found themselves deluded. In this matter, good policy has been but little observed by the Portuguese, because by this mode of conduct they have discouraged all the rest from having confidence in them; whereas, had they assisted and protected them in earnest, as they ought and might easily and cheaply have done on many fair opportunities, they would at this day have had the fealty and love of all India; while they themselves would in consequence, with the strength and aid of their friends, have been much more powerful than they are, and would have been incomparably more dreaded by their enemies.'

Attack on Maldives 1631 or 1632
Dom Filippe seems to have gone on demanding from the Court of Spain active support towards, not his reinstatement, but the more punctual and full payment of his revenues. At length, in 1631, according to Resende, or more probably in 1632, according to the letters which, prior to the despatch of the armada, passed between the Maldive prince and the viceroy, the Spanish government ordered the viceroy to send a force to the islands.

Fifteen ships attack Male', Maldives, with their guns, 1631/32
Ships attack Male', Maldives, with their guns, 1631/32.


The armada, consisting of fifteen ships, under the command of Domingos Ferreyra Belliago, the chief captain of Canara, was despatched in the month of April, and sailed direct for Male'.


Male' defends itself from attack by Domingos Ferreyra Belliago in 1631/2
Male' defends itself from attack by Domingos Ferreyra Belliago in 1631/2. Illustration from a drawing by one of the attackers.


'But,' writes Resende, 'the king of the Maldives was advised of the coming of the armada, and when it arrived he was well fortified, and the only entrance to the island was stopped up with ships filled with stones, so that it was impossible for ships to enter by it, and more impossible to enter by any other way, because the whole island is encircled by rocks and reefs, as may be seen by the plan with the mode of the fortification. The said armada, for some days, fired upon it with cannon, and then seeing it was impossible to force an entrance, and that the time spent was all wasted, returned to Goa.'

Some member of the force made a drawing at Resende's request, and from that he prepared the coloured plan of which a copy is given here.

Dom Filippe fears battle
Leave had been given to Dom Filippe to accompany this expedition, but he made various excuses, such as that he objected to be under the control of the chief captain, and that he could not bear to see the havoc that would be made among 'his subjects' by the Portuguese soldiery.

The last mention of Dom Filippe is made by the barefooted Carmelite monk, Philippus a Sancta Trinitate, who was at Goa, 1631-1639: 'He was of a middling colour, that is, somewhat dark and tanned, after the black skin of his father, with some of the whiteness of his mother. I have often visited and talked with him, and it was arranged that he should come to Europe with me, for he believed that by his presence he could obtain of the king of Spain what he failed to get by letters, seeing, as he saw, that either the commands were not efficacious or that he was mocked in India.

'He had not much revenue, for only some of the islands persevered in acknowledging his sovereignty. He also died while yet young and unmarried, leaving as his successor a nephew on his sister's side; though his father's brother, in reliance upon the laws and customs of the kingdom and the acceptance of the people, claimed the throne as rightfully his. When I left Goa the lawsuit was still afoot, and there was no settled king of these islands.'

The end of the christian kings of Maldives
The end of the family of exiled Maldive kings is related by F. de Sousa: 'The last king of the Maldives was Dom Luis de Sousa, who, on the 22nd October 1653, attempted, with other fidalgos, to depose the viceroy, Dom Vasco Mascarenhas, Conde de Obidos; for which cause he was imprisoned at Mormugao until the 10th November 1655, in the viceroyalty of Dom Rodrigo Lobo da Silveyra, Conde de Sarzedas.

'For the same cause he was sent a prisoner to Portugal in the ship Nossa S. da Graca, in the year 1656. The ship was dismasted in a storm off the Cape of Good Hope; it put back to Mozambique, but, before reaching port, the king was dead. He left no legitimate successor, and named the king of Portugal as his heir to the 11,000 islands.'

As has been stated above, we are without knowledge of the exact terms of the original treaty with the Maldives after the war described by Pyrard, and how far the Portuguese bound themselves to active support of the exiled king; but it would seem from the foregoing summary that the treatment of the exiled family at Cochin and Goa, for more than a century, was on the whole marked with forbearance and humanity.


Footnotes 1887:

King Hassan (Dom Manoel)
According to tradition, still current, this Hassan, whose Maldive name was Hassan Dobulha Faruna (Fashana), was the son of a Sultan Yusub; his rival's name was Ali.

St Francis Xavier at Cochin
St. Francis arrived at Cochin from Malacca on the 24th January 1552, and left for Goa at the beginning of February, and probably had little to do with the conversion and catechising of the Maldive king, which were managed by Padre Antonio Heredia (F. N. Xavier, Res. Hist., p. 175). Bartoli and other Jesuit writers, however, claim for the Apostle of the Indies the lion's share of the credit. Crétineau-Joly goes so far as to say that St. Francis succeeded where Heredia had failed.

The thief of Baara
King Dom Manoel's rival Ali was a native or chief of the island Baara, in Thiladhunmati atoll.

Death of Dom Joao
F. de Sousa gives 1581 as the date of his death; but this must be an error, as the India Office at Lisbon evidently believed him to be alive in Feb. 1583.

Dom Filippe's brother-in-law Antonio Teixeira de Macedo
This captain arrived at Goa in command of the Santa Cruz in September 1591; he returned in command of the same ship on the 10th January 1592, but was attacked at the Azores by the English; his ship was burnt and the crew escaped on shore.

He came out to India again in 1593, in command of the S. Christovao, and left in her again early in 1594. She reached Mozambique with great difficulty, but being unable either to proceed or put back to India, she was abandoned, the crew being saved by another ship.

Teixeira was then put in command of a new ship, built at Bassein, the Madre de Dios, wherein he left Goa on the 15th January 1595: this was probably his last voyage, for this ill-fated vessel was lost near Cape Delgado, on the coast of Mozambique, all except sixteen hands perishing in the sea or on the inhospitable shore.

Pyrard meets Dom Filippe at Goa
(from Vol.2 pp.138-9)
There was also a king of the Maldives that became a Christian at Cochin, and was baptised, as I have already said in treating of the Maldives: he even brought his wife there and they were received in great honour.

This king afterwards wished to constrain his subjects, who had revolted, to recognise him; to that end, he sent an army of Portuguese, who built a fort on those islands, and warred against them in such wise by tile space of ten years, that they made the majority of the islanders tributary.

But at length the Portuguese were betrayed, and being surprised in their fortress were all slain. After that they have not been able to regain a footing, but the moslem king of the Maldives has agreed to pay a certain sum of money every year to this christian king, and to his children and posterity. Under this treaty they are at peace, for no christians reside amongst these people.

I have seen at Goa the grandson of that christian king, aged fifteen years, with his Portuguese mother; he is named Don Philippe. The Portuguese give him the title of Majesty, calling him king of the Maldives, and honour and respect him greatly. The king of Spain gives a pension both to him and to his mother: they were lodged near the Jesuits' college, in a very handsome house.

I have often been to see them, as indeed they begged me on account that I had lived at the Maldives, whereof they were glad enough to hear me gossip. I saw also in his house that gentleman named Adrian de Gouya, whom he had sent upon an embassy to the moslem king of the Maldives, as I have said: he welcomed me with much courtesy, having been my warm friend.

This little king has a suit against his uncle, named Dom Pedro, who resides at Cochin, and is married there, for that he also calls himself king of the Maldives. This uncle is married to a Metice lady, nobly born and vastly rich, who maintains him in comfort; for without her he has only his pension from the king, which is small, and very often, indeed usually, but badly paid.

Petition to the Crown
The Casa da India at Lisbon had endeavoured to introduce the system maintained even in these more rapid times, in our India and Colonial offices, of requiring all letters and petitions to the Crown to come through the local government, by which they are forwarded home with all materials necessary for coming to a decision.

But the Portuguese officials of those days, as indeed the correspondence shows, could not be trusted as a channel of communication. Petitioners were obliged to send their requests direct, or as best they could, and the chances were that some eighteen months afterwards a despatch would arrive at Goa, asking for information.

Dom Filippe's 'habit of Christ'
It appears from the documents directing the investiture at Goa, that the prince was not admitted to the order of Christ till June 1618.

Attack on Male' 1631 or 1632
The year given by Resende, both at fol. 377 and in the writing upon the Maldive plan, as 1631. On the other hand, there can be no doubt that the letters given in the Livro das Moncoes are correctly dated, and in them there is no mention of any expedition in the previous year.

The documents given in the Liv. das Monc., i, 147, are as follows:
20 Jan. 1632 (Dom Filippe to the Viceroy); same date (Viceroy's reply);
24 Jan. 1632 (Dom Filippe to the Viceroy); same date (Viceroy's reply); same date (certificate of Izidoro de Lemos da Mesquita, Secretary of State, to the effect that permission to accompany the expedition had been given under proper conditions).

Last christian king, Dom Luis de Sousa
Probably the son of the fidalgo who married Dom Filippe's sister, Dona Inez.




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