Arrival of Sir Thomas Roe

In January 1615, Sir Thomas Roe presented his credentials to the emperor Jahangir as the Ambassador of the King of England. The objective of Thomas Roe was to finish what was left unfinished by Captain Hawkins.

Sir Thomas Roe was an experienced, firm, courageous, combined with management skills and clever person, who lived as a resident of Agra till 1619 and during this time, due to his manly qualities, dogged persistence and natural dignity was able to swipe out the Portuguese Influence from the Mughals despite of some opposition from Prince Khurram and Nur Jahan. He moved about the jovial ruler, sharing his pleasures, marveling at the wealth of Indians.

This great ambassador of King James tried in vain to obtain a general “treaty” enshrining the articles from the King, but it was not appropriate time as the great Mughals were too ignorant for any such comparisons between Hindustan and any of the country of rest of the world. There could not be any terms of equality, but what he could go for the “Firmans” or Royal orders to the local authorities sanctioning the English Trade at Surat at reasonable terms.

  • The English factory at Surat was set on a permanent basis with the Firman, officially recognized by the Emperor as well as the Prince-Governor Khurram.

Now, the factory was set forth with a higher degree of reputation. Some subordinate factories were started. This was the beginning of the British stronghold in India.

  • We know about the Mughal Empire as seen by Sir Thomas Roe, from his work- titled as “Journal of the mission to the Mogul Empire“. It is a valuable contribution to the history of India in the early 17th century.

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