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The Life and Times of
Edward Robins

This Time Line of the life and times of Edward Robins is designed to include His primary personal and immediate family member life events (shown below in red) along with the context of universal cultural, social, political, military, economic, and health events of those times plus the concurrent technological innovations that may have impacted the lives of Edward Robins and His immediate family members during His lifetime. It is hoped that reviewing His known personal life events within the context of these other various contemporary influences upon His life will help you better understand and appreciate life and times of Edward Robins.

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1597-1603 Hugh O'Neill led the Irish chieftains in an unsuccessful attack against the English.

1598 Boris Godunov becomes Russian czar.

Tycho Brahe describes his astronomical experiments.

1599 Outbreak of plague in Spain.


1600 Giordano Bruno burned as a heretic.

1660 British find sugar pushing so profitable it becomes a matter of national security. British pass the Navigation Act of 1660 to prevent transport of sugar, tobacco, or any product of the American Colonies to any port outside England, Ireland and British possessions.

Doughnuts in America introduced

English East India Company established.

Mathematician and astronomerJohannes Kepler becomes the assistant of Tycho Brahe, the imperial mathematician and court astronomer of Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor.

1601 Kepler (age 30) assumed his position as imperial mathematician and court astronomer to Rudolf II, Holy Roman emperor.

Essex rebellion against Elizabeth I fails.

The First, Second, & Third Virginia Charters 1601


Edward Robins born during 1602

1602 Shareholders formed The United (Dutch) East India Company, with bad consequences for Portuguese traders.

As early as 1602 Bartholomew Gosnold (who named Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard) had shipped material of the Sassafras plant to England. By 1607 Sassafras was in great demand, sold in English coffeehouses and even on the street. The tea was said to cure a wide range of diseases; the wood, thought to repel insect attack. Today we know that oil of sassafras (out of use since the early 1960s) is substantially the chemical safrole, once used to flavor root beer, but now considered carcinogenic.


His wife, Jane Cornish Robins, born during 1603

1603 Heavy outbreak of plague in England.

1603 Queen Elizabeth I, ruler of British Empire, dies

1603-1625 James I (King James VI of Scotland) inherits the throne of England. He was the first to call himself King of Great Britain (title became official with Act of Union in 1707).

Ieyasu rules Japan, moves capital to Edo (Tokyo).

Iyeyasu, a warrior and the chief deputy of the previous Japanese Emperor names himself shogun.

Shakespeare's writes Hamlet.


1604 James I of England restores Recussancy Acts, with more persecution and the expulsion of priests. Pope Clement VIII requests that English Catholics refrain from rebellion. A peace treaty with Catholic Spain is signed.


1605 Cervantes's Don Quixote de la Mancha, the first modern novel.

1605 Pope Leo XI

1605-1621 Pope Paul V

The Gunpowder plot in England is uncovered.


1606 A million black mulberry trees were imported to England, another step in an effort to start a silk industry. Production of silk in England was never successful.

Carlo Maderno redesigns St Peter's Basilica into a Latin cross

King James I of England charters the London and Plymouth companies.

Rembrant, a Dutch baroque artist, is born.


1607 Jamestown, Virginia, established-first permanent English colony on American mainland. Pocahontas, daughter of Chief Powhatan, saves life of John Smith.

Area of Virginia settled by 1607

Habana is officially named the capital of Cuba.


1608 Samuel de Champlain founds the village of Quebec.

Several Germans were among the settlers at Jamestown, VA


1609 Baptist Church founded by John Smyth, due to objections to infant baptism and demands for church-state separation

1609 Samuel de Champlain establishes French colony of Quebec.

1609-1610 Rheims-Douay Bible, first Catholic English translation, OT published in two volumes, based on an unofficial Louvain text corrected by Sistine Vulgate (1590), NT is Rheims text of 1582

Jamestown colonists planted cucumbers and carrots in their gardens.

The Relation, the first regularly published newspaper, debuts in Germany.



1610 A Dutch East India Company ship brings lacquer furniture to Holland, thus introducing a demand for it.

1610 The practice of drinking tea was first introduced to Europe, and to England in 1644.

By 1610 huge sugar plantations in the province of Bahia, Brasil were run by 2,000 white settlers, 4,000 black slaves, and 7,000 Indian slaves.

Galileo sees the moons of Jupiter through his telescope.

Maple syrup introduced

Settlement of area of New Mexico begun

Tea was imported to Europe through the Dutch East India Company. It was not until September 1658 that an advertisement appeared in England for this commodity.


1611 Galileo goes to Rome to show the Jesuits his discoveries.

1611 Gustavus Adolphus elected King of Sweden.

John Tradescant, gardener at Hatfield House (built by the First Earl of Salisbury and Chief Minister to King James I), submitted a bill for various plants purchased in Holland, including 80 shillings paid for 800 tulip bulbs. At that price, the bulbs represented a gardener's salary for about six months.

King James Bible published

Rubens paints his "Descent from the Cross".

The King James Version of the bible, which had been commissioned by the British King in 1604 is completed. It was based on Bishop's Bible of 1572 with use of Rheims NT of 1582 - included Apocropha. Alterations found in many editions through 1800, revisors accused of being "damnable corrupters of God's word"


1612 Matthias becomes Holy Roman Emperor.

1612 Tobacco planted in Virginia in American colonies.

John Rolfe is said to have introduced the Orinoco strain of tobacco from Venezuela, giving Virginia colonists their first commercially successful agricultural export crop. (The tobacco native to Virginia was not popular in Europe). The value of tobacco was so great that Virginia governor Thomas Dale was forced to require that each farmer plant 2 acres of corn also.

Kepler becomes the mathematician to the states of upper Austria.

The 225 square mile, 13 foot deep Lake Beemster in Holland was drained to create 17,000 acres of fertile land. The draining required 43 windmills. In the hundred years from 1550 to 1650, nearly 400,000 acres of Dutch land were reclaimed for agriculture.


1613-1645 Reign of Michael I Romanov. Beginning of the Romanov Dynasty which ruled for more than 300 years.

Sir Thomas Dale, the governor of Virginia, hires mercenaries to try and drive the French out of Acadia.


1614 Pocahontas marries John Rolfe.

Japanese shogun Iyeyasu orders that all Christian priests leave Japan, and that the Japanese give up Christianity.

John Napier discovers logarithms.

Settlement of New York began by 1614


Coffee introduced in Europe


1616 William Shakespeare dies.


1617 Ferdinand II becomes King of Bohemia.

Under the Peace of Stolbova Sweden becomes supreme ruler of the Baltic Sea with control of the entire Gulf of Finland.


1618 - 1648 Thirty Years' War across Europe, ends with the Peace of Westphalia.

1618 Start of the Thirty Years' War. Protestants revolt against Catholic oppression. Denmark, Sweden, and France will invade Germany in later phases of war.

Kepler proposes last of three laws of planetary motion.

Thirty Years' War devastates Germany. The country disintegrates into numerous independent principalities


1619 A Dutch ship brings the first African slaves to British North America.

1619 First representative assembly in America held in Jamestown. Also, first African slaves brought to Jamestown.

1619 The Virginia Company of London (having been founded through a land grant in Virginia in 1606) instituted the headright system, a means of granting land in 50 acre parcels to farmers. The original working arrangement had been a seven-year indenture period for settlers, with the expectation farmers would continue as share-cropping tenants. The headright system of land disposal established a precedent for other colonies in eastern North America.

By this time the Dutch had set up a whaling industry on Amsterdam Island in the Indian Ocean.

Ferdinand of Bohemia is rejected by the Bohemian nobles and replaced with Fredrick V. Ferdinand II becomes Holy Roman Emperor, and together with Bavaria and the Holy League goes to war with Bohemia. Start of the Thirty Years War



1620 The Mayflower, a small merchant vessel, sails from England to New England with 102 dissenters seeking religious liberty to found the first permanent colony settled by families. Before landing, some signed the Mayflower Compact and laid the foundation for democracy in America. After a three-month voyage in Mayflower they land at Plymouth Rock (near Cape Cod, at Plymouth, Massachusetts).

Francis Bacon's Novum Organum.

Fredrick V of Bohemia is defeated and sent into exile. Fredinand II wages war against the Hungarian Protestants.

Modern ice cream introduced

Settlement of future state of Massachusetts begun in 1620

The Mayflower Compact 1620


1621 Ferdinand II of the Holy Roman Empire becomes King of Hungary

1621-1623 Pope Gregory XV

A thanksgiving feast was held in mid-October 1621 by Plymouth Colony Pilgrims in appreciation of assistance from members of the Massasoit tribe and celebration of the first harvest.


1622 Native Americans killed a third of the Virginia population of European settlers in apparent retaliation for the encroachment of these immigrants on Indian cornfields.

Moliere (Jean Baptiste Poquelin) is born in 1622 (dies in 1673)


1623 New Netherland founded by Dutch West India Company.

1623-1644 Pope Urban VIII

Area of New Hampshire settled by 1623

Carrying through with the barbarous cruelty of Dutch Governor General Jan Pieterszoon Coen in establishing control over spice producing islands, Dutch representatives committed a brutal massacre of the British and Japanese working on Amboyna.


His daughter, Elizabeth Robins Burgess, born during 1624

1624 London Company (a company colonizing America) is dissolved due to trouble in Jamestown.

Area of Maine settled by 1624


1625-1649 Charles I Ruler of England

Charles I becomes king of Britian.

Ferdinand II of the Holy Roman Empire is victorious in wars against the Protestants in Germany.


1626 Peter Minuit, a German, came to New Amsterdam to serve as the governor of the Dutch colony, New Netherlands. Later he governed the Swedish colony in Delaware.

The Rhinelander Peter Minuit, director of the Dutch colony in America, purchases Manhattan from the Indians and builds Fort New Amsterdam


About 500,000 pounds of tobacco were produced in Virginia in 1627

Ferdinand II (of the Holy Roman Empire) outlaws all religions but Roman Catholicism in Bohemia.

France introduced registered mail.


1628 Charles I of England signs the Petition of Right promising not to collect forced loans or levy taxes without parliament's consent. However, he ignores most of the Petition of Right.


1629 Edict of Restitution allows the Roman Catholic church to recover property seized by Protestants.

The Charter of Massachusetts Bay 1629



Edward Robins married Jane Cornish Robins on April 16, 1630

1630 Kepler dies.

1630-1643 The Finnish cavalrymen, famous for their wild charges, earn the nickname "Hakkapelites" in the Thirty Years War. Their commander, general Torsten St. Alhhandske became one of the most famous Finnish soldiers of Sweden's great power era.

Massachusetts Bay Colony established.


1632 First coffee shop opens in London.

1632 Maryland founded by Lord Baltimore.

Baruch Spinoza (considered one of the great rationalists of 17th century philosophy, laying the groundwork for the 18th century Enlightenment and modern biblical criticism) is born in to a Jewish family in Amsterdam, on November 24, 1632.

Galileo published his book in defiance of Rome, who had asked him not to. He is put under house arrest.

John Locke (1632-1704) English philosopher who founded the school of empiricism (a theory of knowledge that asserts that knowledge arises from evidence gathered via sense experience) is born.


1633 Inquisition forces Galileo to recant his belief in Copernican theory.

Authorized Version of the Bible published in Scotland

First publication in Germany encouraging emigration to America

Inquisition forces Galileo to recant his belief in Copernican theory


1634 Ferdinand II (of the Holy Roman Empire) wins the Battle of Nordlingen.

1634 Until 1637 the zeal of collectors inflated values of tulip cultivars. This Tulipomania eventually fell victim to a market collapse that affected the entire Dutch economy.

Area of Connecticut settled by 1634

Area of current Maryland settled by 1634

Lake Michigan discovered by Jean Nicolet on July 4, 1634.


1635 Tobacco sale in France restricted to apothecaries by doctor's prescription only.


1636 Harvard College founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

1636 Saint Isaac Jogues, a French Jesuit missionary, goes to Canada as missionary to the Huron people.

Area of modern Rhode Island settled by 1636

The Dutch occupied Ceylon, forcing villagers to supply quotas of cinnamon, as had the Portuguese previously.


1637 Rene Decartes publishes drawings of specimens he observed under a microscope.

1637 The Japanese government has several thousand Japanese Christians massacred, and all foreign traders except the Dutch are forced out of Japan.


1638 Area of Delaware settled by 1638

1638 Peter Minuit founds the New Sweden colony


The Fundamental Orders of Connecticut 1639

1639 - 1652 English Civil War



1640 Charles I of England calls the Parliament again after years of not having it. So begins the "Long Parliament"

1640Queen Christina of Sweden establishes Finland's first university, the Swedish-language

Kirchner, a German Jesuit, builds a magic lantern (slide projector).


Edward Robins died during 1641

1641 Civil War brings the collapse of the government in Kongo.


1642 English Civil war begins. Cavaliers, supporters of Charles I, against Roundheads, parliamentary forces.

1642 The first complete Finnish translation of the Bible appears.

Galileo dies.

Montreal founded.

Rembrandt paints his Night Watch.

Samedo Alvaro recounted stories to Europeans about the Chinese healing root called jin-chen, or ginseng.


1643 Evangelista Torricelli accidentally invents the mercury barometer.

Taj Mahal completed.


1644-1655 Pope Innocent X

Descartes's Principles of Philosophy.

End of Ming Dynasty in China-Manchus come to power.

Long Parliament directed that only Hebrew canon only be read in the Church of England (effectively removed the Apocropha)


1645 Oliver Cromwell reorganizes Parliaments armies and (eventually) captures Charles I.

Alexis I second Russian czar of the house of Romanov succeeds his father Michael.


Oliver Cromwell defeats Royalists 1646.


1647 Rice was introduced into cultivation in the Carolinas. Today California, Arkansas, Louisiana, & Texas are the main rice producing states.

Massachusetts Bay Colony required an elementary school in towns of 50 families.


1648 - 1660 The Deluge/Northern War, A series of wars involving Poland, Sweden, Prussia, Russia and Transylvania and Denmark

1648 End of the Thirty Years' War. German population about half of what it was in 1618 because of war and pestilence.

1648 Sweet potatoes were in cultivation in Virginia.

Jean Baptiste van Helmont reported one of the earliest and most spectacular experiments in plant physiology and nutrition. A five pound willow tree was planted in 200 pounds of dry soil. It was watered and allowed to grow for five years. At the end of this period, the total gain in weight was one hundred and sixty-nine pounds and three ounces, while the soil had lost only two ounces. Van Helmont guessed that water is a complex substance which is changed into plant material.

Parliament demands reforms. Charles I offers concessions, brought to trial 1648

Protestant Netherlands independence acknowledged by Spain in 1648. High point of Dutch Renaissance-painters Rubens, Van Dyck, Hals, and Rembrandt

Thirty Years War pits Protestants against Catholics


1649 Charles I is executed. England is proclaimed a republic. Oliver Cromwell tried to force the Irish off their land.

Charles I beheaded 1649.



By 1650 coffee had arrived in England. Within 25 years one could drink the beverage in over 3,000 coffee houses in that country.

By around this time the kingdom of Angola was finally conquered by the Portuguese.

French philosopher, scientist and mathematics, Rene' Descartes dies.

From this time until the 20th Century the Caribbean was the world center for growing sugar cane.

Rum introduced


1651 Britain's Navigation Act required that all imports from the colonies be received on British ships.


His child, Elizabeth Robins Burgess, married William Burgess during 1652

1652 - 1654 First Anglo-Dutch War

1652 The first New England pine trees were felled for British ship masts. Before the end of the century, British warships were built in North America. By 1775 easy sources of wood for masts had been stripped from Eastern North America.

John Hull of Boston, Massachusetts was selected to establish a New England mint. His first coins bore inscription only, but his second set was ornamented with a willow, his third with an oak, and his fourth (the largest issue) with a pine. These Boston shillings are sometimes called the tree coins. John Hull grew wealthy through this process and became the subject of an apocryphal tale, which claims that the marriage of his daughter to Mr. Samuel Sewell was settled with a dowry of 30,000 shillings, the amount determined as equivalent to her weight.

Pasqua Rosée, a Greek who settled in England, opened his London coffeehouse with a printing of "The Vertue of the COFFEE Drink" summarized as


1653-1658 Oliver Cromwell dissolves parliament and takes the title of "Lord Protector" to rule as a dictator

Cromwell becomes Lord Protector 1653.


1654 Blaise Pascal and Pierre de Fermat develop the theory of probability. English chemist Robert Boyle helps found the Philosophical College (which later became the Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge).

Kosher food in the U.S. introduced


Christian Huggens discovered the rings of Saturn.


1656 Baruch Spinoza is ex-communicated by the rabbis and banished from Amsterdam. For the next five years he lives on the outskirts of the city working grinding optical lenses.


1657 Boston Measles Epidemic

1657 Chocolate drinking introduced in London.


His daughter, Elizabeth Robins Burgess, died during 1658

1658 Oliver Cromwell died of malaria, refusing to take the only known treatment (quinine from cinchona), because it was introduced by Jesuits. As a result, Amsterdam "was lighted up as for a great deliverance and children ran along the canals, shouting for joy that the Devil was dead." By 1681 cinchona was universally accepted as antimalarial.

1658-1712 Richard Cromwell Ruler of England. Puritan government collapses.



1660-1685 Charles II King of England. English Parliament calls for the restoration of the monarchy and invites Charles II to return from France restoring the monarchy in England continuing through James II. Decision of Long Parliament of 1644 reversed reinstating the Apocrypha, but reversal was not heeded by non-conformists. Charles II agrees to respect the Magna Carta and Petition of Rights

Area of New Jersey settled by 1660

Area of North Carolina settled by 1660

1661 Charles II is crowned King of England. Louis XIV begins personal rule as absolute monarch; starts to build Versailles.

1661 Louis XIV becomes absolute monarch of France and begins work on palace at Versailles

Georg Hack from Cologne settles in Maryland

The Connecticut Colony Charter 1662

1662 Moliere's troupe performs "le ecole des femmes"

Britain importing 16 million pounds of sugar per year.

1664 - 1667 Second Anglo-Dutch War including the capture of New Amsterdam, renamed New York City

1664 British take New Amsterdam from the Dutch. English limit "Nonconformity" with reestablished Anglican Church.

Isaac Newton's experiments with gravity.

1655-1667 Pope Alexander VII

1665 London swept by bubonic plague. It was noticed that people who lived without sugar escaped harm. Over 68,000 die.

1665 Robert Hooke identifies cells

Great Plague in London kills 75,000.

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