When Thomas Roe arrived in 1616 as James I’s first ambassador to the Mughal Empire, the English barely had a toehold in India. Roe was representing a kingdom beset by financial woes, while the Mughal court was wealthy and cultured, its dominion one of the greatest empires of the world. The story of Roe’s four years in India is one of palace intrigue and scandal, lotteries and wagers that unfolds as global trade begins to stretch from Russia to Virginia, from West Africa to the Spice Islands. Nandini Das reveals Thomas Roe’s time in the Mughal Empire to be a turning point in history and challenges our understanding of Britain and its early empire.
Nandini Das is Professor of Early Modern Literature and Culture at the University of Oxford and a Tutorial Fellow in English at Exeter College.
This online lecture is presented by The British India Historical Trust. For more information and to book tickets, please visit https://www.britishinindia.org.uk/lectures.