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some of the Kinge's gard for one Abbas, the fellow sayed he would ; soe when the Kinge came to the court he gave order with his guard when such a fellow came to speake with one Abbas the next morninge they should bringe him to him; well, the next morninge the man came accordinge to his promise, who demanded of some of the gard for one Abbas, soe they brought him presently to the Kinge's bed-chamber; when the Kinge heard that he was come, he caused him to be brought in unto him; when the man did perceave that it was the Kinge, he fell downe on his knees, asking him forgivenes; the Kinge comanded him to stand up, and sent for aperele for him, and gave him the comand of fifty men, charginge him first to bring the governor to him, which he did within three dayes after, who presantly lost his head; then the Kinge charged him to bringe him twelve heads of those villaines which robbed in the countrey the next weeke followinge, or else he should lose his owne. Soe he tooke his leave of the Kinge for that time, and within foure days after he brought the Kinge twenty heads; when the Kinge sawe that, he gave him the comand of fifty men more, and made him governor of that place, and he behaved himselfe soe well that he brought the countrey in one monthe's space to such quietnesse, that a man might walke with a rod in his hand without hurt; the Kinge, after a small time, did take such a likinge of him, that he made him captaine of his guard, and gave him the comand of a thousand men to keepe the borders of his countrey.
“ It happened upon a time, that the Kinge being in progresse, for this is his custome, he doth never trouble his countrey with carrages, but hath carrages of his owne for that purpose, and all his nobilitie ; the Kinge in the waye did overtake some carrages of this newe made governor, whereof were six moyles laden; the middle moyle havinge
carrage covered with a carpitt wrought with silke and gould; he demandinge of the men whose carrage it was; one made answere that it was the Lord Mustriffa's captaine of his gard, for soe the Kinge had created him; the Kinge that night did lodge in his tents; this new made lord came to the court somewhat late, but when the Kinge did heare of his cominge be presantly did calle for him, and tould him that he did overtake his carrages, whereof there was one moyle that was covered with a gould carpitt, which ladinge, sayde the Kinge, I must have; he presantly did fale on his knees, and intreated the Kinge to take all the reste; for that was all the wealth he had, the Kinge presently was in greatt rage against him, and caused him to be laden with irones, and went presantly where his carrage was; there findinge it to be a chest, he caused it to be broken open, and there he found nothinge but his ould cloeths and his milke-payles, which he used to sell his milke with ; when the Kinge sawe it he presantly wept, because he had done him soe much wronge; then he asked him why he did keepe those soe safe; he answered, that the favors of princes sometimes are lost for a small falt, and his fortune may in time proove soe bad, in regard there weare manie in the court which did envie his honor and fortunes he had receaved, which made me reserve those if such a chance should happen to gett me my livinge; the Kinge presantly caused them to be burnt, and created him a duke, addinge four thou
sand tomannes a year to his livinge, which is eight thousand pounds English, and at oure beinge there he was most in favoure with the kinge; was absolutely a man of the bravest courage in the court, and did use Sir Anthony verie kindly and all his company, but espetially myselfe, for I did receive manie kindneses from him, and in this fashion hath this Kinge exalted manie poore men to honoure since his cominge to the crowne; the Kinge’s disposition is noted by his aparell which he wears that day, for that daye which he weareth blacke he is comonly melancoly and civell; if he weare white or greene, yellowe, or any other light color, he is comonly merrie; but when he weareth red, then all the court is afrayed of him, for he will be shure to kill some bodie that day, I have offtimes noted it; they have marshall lawe in the countrey, for if a man be found to steele the worthe of sixpence, he is presantly hanged at the next tree, by order of the governor of that place wherein he is taken; for everie little town or village hath his governor, or as they call them, cadees, and comonly where the Kinge is he will give justice himselfe; the Kinge doth ever ride with a greate trayne, to the number of five or six hundred men in his companie; they are verie expert in there peeces or musketts; for allthough there are some who have writtan now of latte, that they had not the use of peeces untill our cominge into the countrey, thus much I must wright to their prayse; that I did never see better barralles of musketts than I did see there; and the Kinge hath hard by his court at Ispahane about two hundred men att worke only makinge of peeces, bowes and arrowes, swords and targetts; and thus concerninge the fashion, maner, and custome of the Pertians.
Now to the former matter; I shewed you before howe the Kinge sent us fourteen horses att Casbeene, with other provision to attend him from thence to Ispahane, leavinge the rest of our companie behind us under the conduct of Mr. Abell Pinson, who was then steward to Sir
Anthony, which were to the number of twenty-four persones, English, French, Greekes, and Pertians, who were gallantly furnished by the viceroy of the whole kingdome, everie man his horse and furniture accordinge to his vocation, and were conducted by one of his owne gentlemen from Casbene to Ispahane, where after their cominge to us we stayed there six months, without anie remove, spendinge our time in hauckinge, huntinge, and other sports; in the which time the Kinge was resolved to send Mr. Robert Sherley to the Queene of England with a verie rich presant, only to shew how much he honored her, but Sir Anthony altered the Kinge's mind, perswadinge him to send all the the princes in Christendome, which he was assured the Queene would like well of, and to be in league with them all,'and he would undertake to accomplish the embassage, and moreover that he would maintaine wars against the Turke, on that side of him, and he would worke soe with the Christian princes, that they should maintainc warrs on the other side, and soe by that meanes overthrowe him; to which matter the Kinge was exceedinge glad of, givinge Sir Anthony manie thankes for his good invention, and presently he sent away the Turke's ambassador, who was come thither to renewe the league betweene the greate Turke and the Kinge of Persia, commandinge him to tell his master that he would never reste untill he were in the field against him; at which answeare of the Kinge, the Persians did much rejoyce, for there was an ould proverb in Persia, that there should come a Christian from farr into their countrey, by whose advise they should gaine all their right from the greate Turke, which the Persians in former times had lost; yet after all this was concluded upon, the Kinge was verie loth to part from Sir Anthony, and offered him to be lieutenant-generall of all his forces against the Turke ; which offer Sir Anthony did highly imbrace, yet in regard he was a man of greater note than his brother was, did make choyce to goe of this embasseye, and to returne againe with as much speede as he possible could; but (mala fortuna) did happen on him by the waye. Then Sir Anthony did request the kinge to send a Persian alonge with him, some man of account, to witness with him how much the kinge did imbrace the love of the Christiane princes; the kinge did verie well like of his motion, and made choice of one which had followed him longe whose name was Seane Olibege;* the kinge created him a lord, and allowed him sixteen men to attend on him; moreover, the kinge promised Sir Anthony that he would send presents to everie prince of a greate vallue. Well, after all these matters were concluded on, there came to us a Franciscan frier to Ispahane, and tould Sir Anthony in regard he was a Christian he was the more boulder to come to him, and tould him moreover that there was another frier cominge, a Dominican frier, who was bishop of Antioch, a Portingall born, and he was goinge of greate busines to the Kinge of Spaine: his request was this, that Sir Anthony would gett him that favore from the kinge that he might goe aparelled in his owne weed or habit, which favore Sir Anthony did obtaine of the kinge, and the next day Sir Anthony did goe and meete him four miles forth of Ispahane, with one hundred horse to attend him, and soe he brought him into the cittie and lodged him in his owne house: the next day after he brought him to the kinge, who received him for Sir Anthony's sake verie royally, and the kinge gave him a crucifix of gould sette with diamonds, turkes, and rubies, which crucifix was sent the kinge from Presbiter Jhan, as the kinge himselfe did shewe unto us. The kinge asked the frier where he had travelled -the frier answeared, that he was sent from the Pope, as his deputie, into those parts amongst the Christians : the Pope! saide the king, what is he? allthough he did knowe verie well what he was, yett did he make as though he had never heard of him; the frier made answeare that the Pope was Christ's vicar upon earth to pardon and forgive sinnes : then, quothe the kinge, he must needs be a verie ould man if he have beene here on earth ever since Christ was crucified by the Jewes : nay, said the frier, there hath beene manie popes
since that time, for when one dieth another cometh into his place : what, said the kinge, are they earthly men born in Italie or in Rome? yes, saide the frier; but have they att anie time talked with Christ or God the father, sayed the kinge; no, quothe the frier: then the kinge made
* Cuchin Allibi. --Sherley.
this answeare;-I doe not believe that anie man on earth can pardon or forgive sines but God the father; and for Christe, said the kinge, I doe hould him to be a greate prophete, yea, the greatest that ever was, and I doe thinke verily that if anie man could forgive sins it was hee; for I have read that he did great miracles when he was upon the earth; he was born of a woman, but as I have read the angel of God came to her and breathed on her, and soe was he conceived. I have read, likewise, of his crucifyng by the Jewes, which doth make me hate them, for to this houre there is none suffered to live in my countrey. The frier, was stricken mute, and we all did wonder to heare the kinge reason soe exceeding well, in regard he was a heathen; but he tould Sir Anthony he was allmost a Christian in heart since his cominge unto him. Soe after we had stayed there two weekes longer the kinge's letters were readie to all the Christiane princes, which Sir Anthony received from the kinge; soe we tooke our leaves of Ispahane, and the kinge brought us two dayes journey, and did take his leave of Sir Anthony verie sorrowfull; and did take his brother Mr. Robert Sherley by the hand, whom we left behind us, and the kinge saide to Sir Anthony that he would use him as his owne sone, and that he should never want soe longe as he was kinge of Persia. Then he gave Sir Anthony a seale of gould, and saide, Brother, whatsoever thou dost seale unto, be it to the worth of my kingdome and I will see it paide: soe the kinge kissed Sir Anthony three or four times, and kissed us all, and saide that if we did returne againe we should receive greate honore. Soe we departed from the kinge accompanied by the false frier, who in the end, as you shall hear hereafter, would have betrayed us with his villanie; but Seane Olibeg, that was to come along with us, stayed behind for the presents, because theye were not ready, and he was to come to us at [
] where we were to take shippinge; and soe much for that part.”
Here Manwaring's narrative breaks off, and we can discover no traces of his having afterwards resumed it. Sir Anthony Sherley's relation, also, concludes at the same period. We regret exceedingly that we are unable to give any farther account of the particular circumstances attending this unexampled mission, unless any reliance can be placed on the play to which the romantic adventures of the three brothers gave birth, entitled, The three English Brothers—Sir Thomas, Sir Anthony, and Mr. Robert Shirley ; London, 1607; written by John Day, William Rowley, and George Wilkins. The authors, indeed, in the prologue, profess to have adhered to the facts
Clothing our truth within an argument,
It is manifest, however, that they have, for the sake of the drama, mixed a considerable degree of fiction with actual fact. In some particulars, however, the play is probably more accu
It represents Sir Anthony as having arrived at the court of Russia, and being imprisoned through the machinations of his colleague, and afterwards released, and the latter disgraced; that he next went to Rome, and was well received by the Pope, and thence proceeded to Venice, but, in every place, was thwarted and impeded by Cuchin-Allibi. The failure of the embassage is attributed, by Sherley, to this person; and he also obscurely hints at the injury done him by the ungrateful friar, mentioned in the text.
Sir Anthony's subsequent movements are enveloped in considerable obscurity; but there is reason to believe, that, feeling acutely the unfortunate result of his embassy, he never ventured to return to Persia. It appears, from Wadsworth’s English and Spanish Pilgrim, that, amongst the English resident at the court of Spain, about the year 1625, “ the first and foremost is Sir Anthony Sherley, who stiles himselfe Earle of the sacred Roman Empire,* and hath, from his Catholic majesty, a pension of 2000 duckets per annum, all which, in respect of his prodigality, is as much as nothing. This Sir Anthony Sherley is a great plotter and projector in matters of state, and undertakes, by sea-stratagems, to invade and ruinate his native country, a just treatise of whose passages would take up a whole volume.”+ The King of Spain, also, made him admiral of the Levant.
The honors thus showered upon a subject excited the displeasure or jealousy of James the 1st, who ordered him to return to England, a mandate which Sherley did not think fit to obey. According to Grainger, he died in Spain, in the year 1630.
* There is some difficulty in ascertaining whether Sir Anthony or Robert Sherley, or both, were created Counts of the Roman Empire. Baker states, that Sir Robert Sherley was made an Earl of the Empire by Rodolphus, the Roman emperor. Wadsworth, although of less authority than Baker, was himself, in 1623, at Madrid, where he lived for two years; and he asserts, that Sir Anthony assumed this title. Baker, on the other hand, would hardly state a fact of this kind without some foundation, and that he meant Sir Robert, is evident from what follows.—Baker's Chronicles, 412. The late Lord Orford meant to have cleared up these mistakes respecting the two brothers, and had made many notes on the subject.-Aikin's Biog. Dict. Art. Sherley.
† Wadsworth's English and Spanish Pilgrim, Lond. 1630.