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source four   TranscriptUseful notes
Letter about the pepper trade written in 1710 by the East India Company to the British monarch
(Catalogue ref: SP 34/30/68)
4a 4b
4a   4b                
Catalogue ref: SP 34/30/68; letter from British East India Company on pepper trade, 1710
How to use this source
Study this source carefully. Different parts of the source will contain clues about why the British became empire builders in India. As you study the source, ask yourself:
  • What are the main concerns of the British East India Company in 1710?
  • What are the Dutch East India Company doing?
  • Does it seem strange to you that the Queen should be asked to think about how to protect Britain's trade in pepper?
  • What does this suggest about the spice trade?
  • What do you think the following phrase means: the Company 'are more concerned for the Benefit of the Nation than themselves'?
  • What does this source tell historians about why the British became involved in India?
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