Trial of four British seamen at Canton, 1 October 1807: scene inside the Court
A scene showing the Chinese Court of Justice held at the British factory of Canton, 8 March 1807. The court was convened after a Chinese man was killed by rioting sailors from the East Indiaman 'Neptune'. While on shore leave at Canton, sailors from the ship became involved in a disturbance resulting in the death of one and the wounding of several Chinese. Trade by English ships was stopped and an investigation was held. In the presence of the British authorities there was an inquiry into a charge of homicide laid against a seaman from the 'Neptune'. The Chinese magistrate found one seaman guilty of accidental homicide and ordered that he be detained in the English factory. The rest of the 52 men were acquitted.
- Image reference: BHC0581
- National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
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