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Amboyna Massacre





In 1623 at Amboyna (Ambon Islands) the Dutch government, in conflict with the English, committed a massacre upon the English traders on the island.

Amboyna Massacre, Wikipedia

After the hideous massacre was committed, an unknown Dutch author wrote a Placcard justifying the Dutch for the slaughter of innocent English men in the Amboyan Islands. It appears as though our own Rev. John Wing translated the Dutch Placard as a favor for a Dutch minister. Apparently after Rev. John Wing completed the translation the placard was then distributed freely everywhere, most particularly in England. The Dutch Placard only further incensed the English population who were already up in arms about the incident in Amboyna.

At some point Rev. John Wing, with the help of a Dutch minister, translated the Dutch Placard and included it in the book;

"A true relation of the vniust, cruell, and barbarous proceedings against the English at Amboyna in the East-Indies, by the Netherlandish gouernour and councell there. Also the copy of a pamphlet, set forth in dutch and then in English, by some Netherlander; falsly intituled. A true declaration of the newes that came out of the East-Indies with the pinace called the Hare, which arrived at Texel in June, 1624. together with an answer to the same pamphlet. by the English East-Inda Company. Published by authority."

"by John Skinner; Sir Dudley Diggs and John Wing, of Flushing Zealand."

This book was published in 1624 which is what must have compelled the English Ambassador to the Hague, Sir Dudley Carleton to write a letter to Rev. John Wing that he needed his help to get to the bottom of just exactly who not only perpetuated the massacre but who wrote the Dutch Placard that justified the massacre upon the English traders. It was also an upbraid because of the book that by now had circulated quite quickly among the English and the Dutch. It is evident that our ancestor, Rev. John Wing was in some great trouble.

Rev. Wing responded to Sir Carleton's letter on September 28, 1624 from Flushing. Among other things, he tells the Sir Carleton of his illness;

"Right Honorable, your lordship, letter of the 17 Sept: I received the 22 of the same from a dutiful & ----------- answer (?) whereunto, no hand but Gods, should have withholden mine (myne); but such was the infirmity of myne own body, that for diverse days I could not write at all, and such is the sorrowful dissatisfaction of a sick family, that as yet I am neither able to write so advisedly of myself as I should, nor goe abroad (word marked out) to sift out, what might be said of others so thoroughly as I would."

He also apologizes for any misunderstanding and that he does not know the author of the Dutch Placard. Rev. Wing implores Sir Dudley Carleton;

"I most humbly beseech your Lord to take that my unwise carriage in the past confrontation if can believe according to the good I intended, not the evil that hath issued, beyond my utmost jealousy and suspicion"

Calendar of State Papers, Colonial Series, by Great Britan Public Record Office, John William Fortescue







Evidently Rev. Wing was found innocent of any wrong doing because by 1627 he was appointed the Pastor to the English Church at the Hague,the Sacrament Gasthuis in Noordeinde


With deep appeciation to Michael Wing for sharing these copies with us.

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