Spice At Any Price Howard Gray
Spice at Any Price - Howard Gray
The life and times of Frederick de Houtman 1571-1627
Sixty kilometres off the Batavia Coast of Western Australia lies an archipelago composed of three groups of low islands surrounded by shallow reefs. We find them shown for the first time on an early 1620's chart, labelled as F.Houtmans Abrol hos
In researching the history of these islands, i sought to discover just who F.Houtman was and why his name became so indelibly attached to these stories. What emerged was a remarkable character whose life spanned a transformative period of Dutch history, the beginnings - for them - of their golden age.
The 'Golden age' was underpinned not by gold but by the acquisition of just three spices: Pepper, cloves and nutmeg. So significant were they that nothing could stand in the way of their procurement. It was indeed spice at any price and Frederick was 'in the thick of it'.