Volume 7 ended with the entry concerning Jan van Elserack’s departure from Nagasaki for Edo on November 8. 1643. Volume 8 contains the remaining part of the diary, concluding on November 3, 1644, the day before Elserack left Japan for the second time.
 
Visit to the Court and the Breskens Affair
 
In 1643, the chief factor left Nagasaki for Edo earlier than in the years before. This was in order to obtain the release of the ten Dutchmen led by Captain Schaep of the Breskens who were being detained in Edo.  Elserack left Nagasaki on November 8, arriving in Edo on December 1. (p. 15)  Once in Edo, he applied for the release of the detainees.
 
On December 3, Inoue Masashige examined Elserack about the Breskens’ voyage and her crew.   When it was found that Elserack’s statements tallied almost exactly with the statements of the detained crew, the bakufu’s suspicions were significantly allayed.   On December 6, Elserack was examined by three high-ranking bakufu officials in Edo castle.   On the basis of this meeting, the shogun decided to release his prisoners. (pp. 28-31)  On December 17, the bakufu issued a three point order to Elserack, including clauses that the crews of any visiting Dutch ships should not engage in unlawful behavior that invites suspicion as the men of the Breskens had done.
 
The Breskens Affair and the Passage to Japan of Dutch Ships
 
The Breskens and her sister ship the Castricum had been sent by order of the Governor General in the Dutch East Indies, Anthonio van Diemen, to search for the Gold and Silver Islands that were said to lie somewhere northeast off the coast of Japan.  They were also to investigate a route to northern Asia.  In June 1643 the Breskens, which had been separated from the Castricum in a storm, entered the bay of Yamada in Nanbu domain in the northeast of Honshu.  While searching for fresh water and food, ten crewmembers under Captain Schaep were apprehended and brought to the domain capital of Morioka. They were later sent to Edo.
 
Unhappily for the Breskens’ crew, a group of four Jesuits intent on infiltrating into Japan had been caught at around the same time in a different part of Japan. As a result, bakufu officials were extremely anxious about the problem of coastal defenses.   However after it was understood that the crew were Dutch and not Catholics, bakufu fears were calmed and the problem to be solved became one of deciding by which procedure the Dutch should be released.
 
The Events of Nagasaki and the Situation outside of Japan
 
Elserack departed Edo for Nagasaki on December 24, 1643 and reached his destination on January 24, 1644.  The following ships arrived in Nagasaki in 1644
 
Castricum arrived August 1
Swaen arrived August 30 from Siam
Swarten Beer (fluyt) arrived August 30 from Siam
Sayer arrived September 1 from Tonkin
Lillo (yacht) arrived September 17
Capelle arrived October 6
 
During 1644, a large number of Chinese junks came from all parts of East Asia to Nagasaki and brought with them news about the situation in China as well as Southeast Asia.  This included news concerning Iquan’s (Cheng Chi-lung) involvement as a general for the Ming and reports about the war between the Portuguese and the Dutch in Ceylon.
 
Texts for Transcription
 
The original manuscripts for this transcription are preserved at the Nationaal Archief.  They are found in both the Archief Nederlandse Factorij Japan (NFJ) and the Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie Archief (VOC).   Previously they were all classified under one section, the Koloniaal Archief (KA). The basic text for this transcription is:
 
Daghregister des Comptoirs Nangazackij van de jaaren 1642/43 en 1644
NFJ 57 (KA 11687)
 
A microfilm copy of the manuscript is also available in the Historiographical Institute at the University of Tokyo (6998-1-4-1, 7598-2-2~3)
 
The above text has been fully collated by the editors with other manuscript copies, namely NFJ 58 (KA 11686), VOC 1148 (KA 1055) and VOC 1150 (KA 1056).
 
Appendices
 
Ten documents are appended for the sake of reference. These include letters addressed to Jan van Elserack, instructions for Anthony van Brouckhorst in Tonkin, instructions for Pieter Antonisz. Overtwater, and a letter dealing with Elserack’s career and the state of trade in Japan.
 
Index
 
A comprehensive index is provided for this volume.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
8 November 1643 - 24 November 1644 (Volume Eight)