Voyage de Siam par l’Abbé de Choisy 1685-1686 XXII

Esteemed Readers, winds, wine & Southern seas are crucial points of a new turn of our voyage. We are somewhere there but not exactly in the place we must be. Prepare for new adventures near mysterious the Terra Australis (don’t mix up with Australia)! 😉🥂

Aboard the Oiseau, 2 July 1685

“The sea is quite calm but the wind rages as ever. The altitude is 34 degrees 55 minutes. We are moving to the South expecting to meet the Western winds there. We see plenty of birds from all the sides. It makes us believe that some lands are nearby…”

Aboard the Oiseau, 3 July 1685

“The sea is marvellous, the wind is good to guide our wheel. We must be approaching Terra Australis (NB: probably the Isle of Java). It will make our route direct. Does not it remind you  a story of a good man Arosca Roitelet Austral that you have read? He was well recieved by the Captain Gonneville. I suppose that the new Captain of this land is the grandson of the Captain’s grandson. There are 150 years between us, so I believe that we shall be welcomed much better. I don’t worry beforehand about things that are going to happen, however I dare to suppose that he would not be too severe to border the Terra Australis. A good man Arosca left his son to Gonneville to bring him to France agreed that he (Gonneville) would sail back with him during eighteen moons together with two pieces of Canons to make troubles for Arosca’s neighbours. Gonneville broke his word. Arosca is still waiting. What if they arrange a legal suit against us there? It’d be better to sail directly to Batavia where we shall be recieved as well as in the Cape.

I say, here are my moaning begins! We shall not reach Siam this year. It’s fifteen days we do nothing but sail back. The Southwestern wind is opposite & changeable: it has started with the New Moon & will last for some time more. So, where should we go? More than thousand lieuës separate us from Batavia. When we arrive there the monsoon of Siam will pass. What a pity! To spend the winter in the company of the Dutch who don’t love you as much as they declare! Oh, poor France, when shall we see you again? Uff…a year has been lost.

Oh, my good Messieurs, I speak too much about them but it does not mean that all is said & that you will be disappointed. Don’t you remember our route after three still days? Everything seemed to have been lost: we had no chance to see the Cape pretty in time. Keep going! Keep going! It will be all right. We shall pray God & drink our Spanish wine which, between us, I find wonderful. Good winds will come. As they brought us here, they will do to Siam for certain!…”

Dieu Vous Ait en Sa Sainte Garde,

Vostre l’Abbé de Choisy ”

Previous posts of the Voyage (I-XXI) is here.

Image: Tapestry, 17th century, France

Maria KethuProfumo


About kethuprofumo

Reconstructing the Past for the glorious Future
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9 Responses to Voyage de Siam par l’Abbé de Choisy 1685-1686 XXII

  1. Ah yes. Spanish wine. Helps us to stop complaining and forget our troubles.

  2. Ciao amica cara!
    Abbraccioni d’affetto!!❤️🌹

  3. Klausbernd says:

    Dear Maria
    These are stories about seafaring we very much like.
    Especially in the 16th and 17th c there was no clear differentiation between fiction and reality especially in the world of sailors. Therefore it’s so amusing looking at maps from these times.
    All the best from
    The Fab Four of Cley
    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • kethuprofumo says:

      ☺☺☺ I share your opinion, dear Klaus. On my behalf, I’m impressed with courage of people of that epochs. They sailed whatever happened & managed to reach the destination they needed. Thank you for your wonderful thought! 😊😊😊

      • Klausbernd says:

        Good Morning, dear Maria,
        it is amazing as they could only measure the latitude but not the longitute. Therefore a lot of sailors didn’t reach their aim or if they had been there they couldn’t find it again. Another problem were the classical concepts of the end of the world and the balance of the continents. Even up to the 17th c sailors were afraid of falling off the end of the world before they were caught by a maelstream they couldn’t escape. Besides mapping was more following concepts of believes than reality. These sailors were tough and courageous survivors but life on land was at hard if you are not born into a privileged class.
        With love xx from us all
        The Fab Four of Cley
        🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      • kethuprofumo says:

        😁😁😁 Good evening, dear Klaus! What a wonderful epoch it was no matter all its difficulties. The concept of the end of the world is not bad at all. People knew to limit themselves or at least they had something they were afraid of unlike our time of a total permissiveness.
        I wish you a wonderful spicy week! ☺
        Send to Dina, Fairies & you my warmest greetings from Paris!

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