Josias van Bengale1

M, #15434, b. circa 1655

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Last Edited06/03/2016
BirthOrigin*Josias was from Bengal and perhaps born there circa 1655. The toponym 'van Bengale' or from Bengal was a term loosely applied during the period of VOC dominance to enslaved or formerly enslaved people from any of the countries bordering the Bay of Bengal. I estimated his year of birth (loosely) based on the price paid, suggesting he was fit, strong and perhaps also qualified in a trade.1 
Slave TransactionsOn 23 May 1675 Josias van Bengale was sold by Jan Cornelis Swart to Steven Jansz Botma, for Rds 100.2,3


  1. [S418] Anna J. Böeseken, Slaves and Free Blacks at the Cape 1658-1700 (Cape Town: Tafelberg, 1977), p. 131. Hereinafter cited as Slaves and Free Blacks at the Cape 1658-1700.
  2. [S418] Anna J. Böeseken, Slaves and Free Blacks at the Cape 1658-1700, p.131. 23.5.1675: Josias from Bengal, sold by first mate Jan Cornelis Swart to Steven Jansz for Rds. 100. [I have assumed the purchaser was Steven Jansz: Botma - corrections welcome.]
  3. [S607] J.L. (Leon) Hattingh, "Kaapse notariële stukke waarin slawe van vryburgers en amptenare vermeld word (II), Die tweede Dekade 1671-1680", Kronos (Die notariële stukke II) 15 (1999): 23.5.1675          [Verlore]
    Opperstuurman Jan Cornelis Swart verkoop aan Steven Jansz die slaaf Josias van Bengale vir 100 Rds.. Hereinafter cited as "Die notariële stukke II."

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