Jia-jing: Year 36, Month 12, Day 16
5 Jan 1558
Previously, the Secretary Wang Jian and others were sent to Fu-jian and Guang-dong to obtain ambergris. They sought it for a long period but none was obtained. At this time, Jian advised: "We should, in respect of the ocean-going ships which come to Guang-dong, consider arrangements by which to proportionately tax their cargoes, and only allow those who present ambergris to trade. In this way, the price will not be high and the aromatic will be easily obtained. It will then not be necessary to have special officials assigned to obtain it." The Ministry deliberated and held that this was appropriate. It requested permission to recall the various officials who had been sent and instead to have the Guang-dong grand coordinator and regional inspector establish procedures at those places on the coast at which the fan ships call, to obtain and purchase the aromatics and to make arrangements by which to levy a proportional tax on ocean-going ships. The proposals were memorialized and were approved by Imperial command.
Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 88, page 7691