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de Spina of Gollipulo, an eminent Man in those parts, I was by bim prefer'd to be a Captain of a Ship of Malta, which was set out by the said Orlando, and committed to my Command against the Turks in the Arches, in afi tance to the Venetian Service : in whicb Setvice I spent about nine months, till the tempestuous Season of the Tear enforcá me to return into Harbour again. And in this time of Employment, I made five Fights at Sea, and two at Land; being cbafer by Lot to invade tbe Turks Country, with a certain Company of Sel. diers colle&ted out of our Fleet, to do some execution upon the Borders of the Enemy, and to get some Provision for our Relief; in all ppbich Pights (altho very perillows) God gave me the Vi&tory.

The whole time I spent beyond the Seas, before and after this Em ployment, w.xs almost four years, not staying long in any one place. But firji I travel'd to all the Sea-Towns of note for Merchandizing, to know the Trude of the places, and the Conveniency of their Hero bours, that I might be able to do some profitable service in Merchants Aff.lirs. Also I travel'd into several Countries, and the most eminente cities and Towns therein ; viz. Egypt, Macedonia, Dalmatia, Calabria, Apuleia, Sicilia, Affyria, Sclavonia, fome parts of Spain and Portugal; to the Islands of Cyprus, Candia, Patmos, Delphos ; to Carthage, Corinth; Troy, Conftantinople; be fides many other Towns and Places : but my longest abode was in Italy, and therein at Venice, Naples, Leghorn, Florence, Milan, Rome, Bolognia, Mantua, Genoa, &c. And at taft looking bomeward, I came into France; taking a brief view of many eminens places in that Kingdom. And at Paris I found many of my countrymen of which, tho some be Persons of great Quality, yet) God knowetb they are in a loc Condition. And now I shall give a brief Account of some of my Observations, during the time of my abode beyen the Seas

A Narrative of the Proceedings of a Great Council

of Jews, c.

T Paris our Countryinen live peaceably, and enjoy our Religion without disturbance. There is a place

allow'd them, with neceffary Accommodations for the Exercise of Religion. Dr. Steward did often preach to them; and for their Form of Worship, ic is the same that was formerly in England, with the Book of Common Prayer, and the Rites therein used; and also they continue the Innovations that were pra&tised by inany of our Clergy, as Bowing at the Name of Jesus towards the Alcar, bc. which I know giveth

ottence

Offence to the good French Protestants, who to me did often condemn those Innovations for Romith Superstitions. Doubt. less they would do our Church and our Religion more Credit there, if they did use less Ceremony. As for the French Papists, truly they are more civil to them than was expected : for the Opinion of the World, where I have been, is but mean of that Nation. And I believe the Italian may be their Cousin German, for both of them are false and faithless e. nough. And this consideration (God having taken away Orlando my noble Friend, who did always much countenance me) did lessen my Affection to continue in that Service for my Soldiers were all Italians (except a few Greeks) and Í never saw much cause to be confident in their Fidelity; but it was chiefly for fear of him, that they were fo tractable to ime.

As for Religion, in moft parts where I have heen, it is generally the same with the Church of Rome; but for the Grecians (for amongst them I was) they are neither pure Proteftants nor pure Papifts ; I mean, neither only Proteftants nor only Papifts, but their Religion is a mixture of both : For tho they hold some Fundamentals with us, yet they fol. low many of the Romißl Superftitions; and (according tó my Observation) they follow more the Religion of Rome, than the Proteftant Church ; and they are much poison'd with Heresys.

But of all Nations, according to my Observation, none are more zealous for the Religion of Rome than the Spaniards, who, I think, for this are more Romanists than the Romans themselves ; for with them there is an Inquifition, and in Rome I never heard of the same dangerous Snare: there I had as much Freedom as I could defire, and more Courtesy than I could expect, without any Temptation to apoftatize from my Religion.

As for the Occurrences that I met with, they were many : But these four were the most considerable.

First, The strangling of the great Turk by the Janizaries, at which time there was great Fear and Trouble in Constantinople; but they enthrond his Son, and this brought a peace. able settlement. And with him there were cut off divers Bafha's Heads; all whose Heads (excepting the Great Turk’s) lay three days in Chargers before the Palace-Gare, for the pub. lick View of the People; which they say is the Cuftom for the Noblemen that are beheaded.

The next thing is, The flowing of the River Nilus in Egypt ; the manner whereof is this : It beginneth to Aow about the fifteenth of June cvery year: the People know the time thereNA

of,

of, and expe&t it accordingly; and this is after their Harveft, which is usually ended about the beginning of May. As for Rain, there seldom falleth any in Egypt. During the time the River is up, all the Country appeareth like Ilands. Their Towns are seated upon Hills, and their lower Grounds are al cover'd with Waters; and the Inhabitants use small Boats to pass from place to place about their Affairs : and because they know the yearly Howing of Nilus,they provide for the Safe ty of their Cattel till the waters are wafted away again There are also certain Pillars of Stone fet up, with divers Mars upon them, by which they know the degrees of the riling, and the usual height that the Waters do ascend unto ; and if the Waters do ascend above the higheft Mark, they do expedi some strange Consequence thereof. But the greateft wonder is, the present Cessation of the Plague upon the flowing e this River. There died some thoufands of the Plague the day before the flowing of Nilus in Grandcairo, as they certify? : me; and a day or two after, not one Person more died o the Infection. This I obsery'd, that the Land is full of ushealthy. Fogs, Mists, and Vapours, which cause the Discale; and it seems the waters of Nilus do purify it again.

In the Kingdom of Grandcairo, alias Pharaob's Town, is the City, and it is greater than any elsewhere I did behold; but Memphis is the neater City: and being there, I went to let the Land of Goshen, where the Israelites did inhabit. This i a very pleasant and fruitful Land for Pafture, such as I have no where seen the like. At this time also, I had an opportunity to see the Red Sea, and the place where (as they ir form'd me) the Israelites did enter their Journy thro the fame. There also they shew'd me the great Mountains that inclosd them, when Pbaraoh pursued them with his great Army, and the Hills where the two Armies lay in sight one of another. And there. I found the true reason why it is calld the Red Sea; not because the Water is red naturally, but because the Sand is red: And this was clear to me by plain Demonftration; for I put some of the Water into a clean Vellel, and there I did see it had the same colour of other Water; 64 the Sand is reddish, and giveth the same colour to the Water.

I shall omit many other things concerning Egypt ; only chis, It is under the Turks Dominion, and the Natives are bis ma serable Slaves.

Thirdly, You may expect some News from Rome, where also I was, and did behold their great Solemnity ; it being then the Anno San&to, as they there call it, that is, the Yez of Jubilee.

There There I beheld the Pope in his Glory, and how in great State he was carried about the City: the Streets were throng'd with the People ; and as he pass'd by,they made them even ring with Acclamations and Rejoicings : He was carried by some e niinent Men, having a rich Canopy over him. He made his Crofles in the Air with his fingers, and threw his Blellings a mongft them. And truly these Delutions were so prevailing with the People, that (poor Souls) they seem'd to me to rejoice, as if Christ himself had been come to Rome, and brought them down the Felicities of Heaven.

At one time I beheld in Naples (perhaps it will seem ftrange, but it is true) about eight thousand Pilgrims going to Rome for their Abfólution; all which the Vice-Roy of Naples maintain'd three days at his own charge ; and on the fourth day, they did present themselves before him at his Palace in Pil. grim Weeds, viz. with leaden Pictures of Saints in their Hats, with leather Collars about their Necks, which fell down half way over their Arms, and their Staves in their hands; and thus they march'd away from Naples, in the posture of an Army towards Rome; and so farewel Rome. Vidi, fatis eft vidise.

I omit to recite many other Occurrences, which by conference I shall willingly communicate to my Friends, they being too many to commit to writing: only now the fourth remarkable thing remaineth to present you with; and that is,

The Proceedings of a great Council of Jews, assembled in the Plain of Ageda in Hungary, about thirty Leagues diftant from Buda, to examine the Scriptures concerning Chrift; on the twelfth of O&tober, 1650.

It hath been much defir'd by many honeft Christians, that this Narrative of the Jews Council should be publish'd, which I did intend only to communicate to private Friends. The chief Argument by which they have persuaded me to do it, is, because they do conceive it to be a Preparative and hopeful Sign of the fews Conversion, and that it will be glad Ti.

dings to the Church of Chrift; and therefore I have yielded Eto-satisfy their Desires therein. And thus it was:

At the place above-named there assembled about three hundred Rabbies, call'd together from several parts of the World, to examine the Scriptures concerning Chrift; and it seems this place was thought moft convenient for this Council, in regard that part of the Country was not much inhabited,'b:cause of the continual Wars between the Turk and the King of Hungary; where (as I was informd) they had fought two bloody Battels : yet both Princes, notwithstanding their own Differences, did give leave to the Jews to hold their Council Na 2

there.

there. And for their Accommodation there, the few did make divers Tents for their Repose, and had Plenty of Protifon brought them from uther Parts of the Country, during the time of their fitting there. There was also one large Tents built only for the Council to fit in, made almoft foursquare ; the North and the South part of it, being not altogether to large as the East and Weft part thereof. It had but one Door, and that open'd to the Eaft; and in the middle thereof ftood a little Table and a Stool for the Propounder to fit on, with his Face towards the Door of the Tent. The said Propounder was of the Tribe of Levi, and was named Zacharia; and within this Tent round about were placed divers Forms for the Consulters to fit on. It was also inclosed with a Rail, that frood at a distance from it, to prevent entrance to all Strangers, and to all such femos as could not prove themselves to be Jews by Record, or could not dispute in the Hebren Tongue, which many had forgotten, who liv'd in such Countries, where they are not allow'd their Synagogues, as in France, Spain, and those parts of Italy that do belong to the King of Spain, viz. the Kingdom of Naples, with the Province of Calabria and Apuleia ; the Kingdom of Sicilia and Sardinia; in which places if a few be found, and he deny the Popish Religion, he is in danger to be condemnd and executed for it ; and yet Profit and Benefit allureth them to dwell in those Countries, notwithstanding their Fears and Dangers: and themselves are willing to forget, and fo neglect to teach their Children their native Language, rather than they will lose their opportunity of Profit: and some have burnt the antient Records of their Tribe and Family, that they might not be discover'd by searching, or otherwise. And for this Defelt, that they could not prove their Tribe or Family, they were not permitted to come within the Rail, but were commanded to remain without, with the Strangers that remaind there, to see the Issue of their Proceeding, which were above 3000 Persons, and they were for the most part Germans, Almains, Dalma tian', and Hungarians, with some Greeks; but few Italians, and not one English-man, that I could hear of, besides my self,

I was inform'd, that the King of Hungary not favouring the Reformed Religion, did give no encouragement to any Protestant Churches to send any Divines thither; but he did allow that some Albftants should be sent from Rome : and their corring thither did prove a great unhappiness to this hopefulCouncil

When the Affembly did first meet, they spent some time in their mutual Salutations; and, as their manner is, they kissd one the other's Cheek, exprefsing much Joy for their happy Meeting. And all things being provided for their Accommo

datio,

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