On This Day: 1 March 1701/02

Today in 1702 John Madder, the first mate of the Worcester, wrote to Bowrey from on board following up on his early letter when he had forgott to Satisfie Bowrey Concerning ye Woman who was on board. Madder claimed that she had come from Gravesend to visit her husband.

It is clear that Bowrey was not happy about a woman being on the ship. It is not clear what his reason was but, traditionally, it was considered to be unlucky to have a woman on a ship although this was not always the case. He may have wanted to limit the risks to the upcoming voyage. But, when Bowrey travelled home to England after nineteen years in the East Indies, one of his fellow passengers was a woman. It was more likely that he did not want there to be any distractions for the crew.

As it was, Madder reported that the woman had been very sea-sick for 3 or 4 days whilst they were in the Downs. As soon as the weather improved, she went ashore. She had only been on board for 4 days.

Madder was keen to assure Bowrey that everything was well on board.

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