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The data are arranged into four spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel 2007 format (‘.xlsx’ files). These are locked (password protected) for editing by default. If a whole sheet is copied, it will remain locked; however, any portion of a sheet can be copied to a new sheet and be edited freely.

Bombay 1708-53 (Excel Spreadsheet)

China 1706-50 (Project document)

Madras 1706-53 (Excel Spreadsheet)

Fabrics Ordered by the English East Indian Company (Excel Spreadsheet)

Source Documents (Excel Spreadsheet)

For each of the spreadsheets, the type, quantity (including the unit of measurement) and quality (where specified) of the goods ordered from London each year are listed. There was frequently more than one order sent out each year, as well as years where no order was sent, or no list is available in the E/3 series. The rows at the head of each spreadsheet give the details of each Company order used to compile the database:

Name of Row Description
‘book, EAC ref’ Gives the British Library India Office Records catalogue reference (e.g. E/3/99), followed by a reference number we have used to catalogue each order.
‘pages’ Gives the page range of the volume where the letters comprising each order can be found. The page number ranges given may not necessarily include each individual page in that range.
‘date of letter’

Gives the date of the order letter/s. These have generally been rendered, identically to the records used, in Julian or ‘Old Style’ form (calendar year beginning 25 March) and years in brackets express the date using the ‘New Style’ Gregorian form (year beginning 1 January).

'ship' Gives any names of ships on which the order was sent out, where mentioned. Where likely dates of voyages are given, these are rendered in Gregorian form.


Gives the destination of the ship/s used to carry the order letter/s, where mentioned.

Any figures in italics in the spreadsheets indicate where the division between different specifications (place of origin, lengths, colours etc.) in the lists was not given precisely. Where an unspecified amount of a particular good was ordered, this is indicated as ‘unspecified’.