Drunk, Diseased or Rendered Obnoxious: Vice in the East India Company’s Persian Factory

This event has finished Took place on: Monday, 23rd Oct 2017

Drink, death and disease on the shores of the Persian Gulf. Explore the lives of the East India Company’s servants in Gombroon.

Until recently, the East India Company’s factory in Persia was only of interest to scholars interested in Persian trade and its daily life remained largely unexplored. Thanks to a joint project between the British Library and the University of Essex, Peter Good’s PhD research uncovers the rich life of the factory and sheds light on the everyday experience in the Persian Gulf of the eighteenth century.

The East India Company’s factory was a small part of a huge organisation. Gombroon where the Company was established was famous as one of the more unpleasant places to be based, ranking with the isolation of St. Helena and the torrid heat of Java as a place of poor health and short life. Indeed, the deaths and diseases suffered by the Englishmen there have rightly earned it the description of being 'but an inch from hell'.  

That being said, the Company’s employees enjoyed some comforts, from the copious amounts of wine available from the city of Shiraz to the Dutch 'punch house'. The relationships between the Company’s servants and their native neighbours was by turns a pleasant distraction and a deadly game, with one man running away with his Persian lover, while another was brutally murdered at the hands of his staff.

 Through looking at the lives, loves and deaths on the fringe of the East India Company’s organisation, Peter Good will show how his research has shed light on the experiences of these men and the impact that their environment had on them.

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Cost: Free of Charge


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Europe/London Drunk, Diseased or Rendered Obnoxious: Vice in the East India Company’s Persian Factory Drink, death and disease on the shores of the Persian Gulf. Explore the lives of the East India Company’s servants in Gombroon. https://www.ianvisits.co.uk/calendar/2017/10/23/drunk-diseased-or-rendered-obnoxious-vice-in-the-east-india-companys-persian-factory-152917 The British Library,96 Euston Road, London,London,London

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