100 LETTERS OF CORTES. discharged into the sea, with a wider mouth, according to the chart, than any others ; this seemed to be between the mountains called Sanmyn, which extend to a bay un- til then believed by the pilots to separate the land at a province called Mazamalco.* Muteczuma told me that I might select whom I would wish to send, and that he would provide the means for their examining and ascer- taining every thing ; I immediately designated ten men, and among them several pilots and persons acquainted with the sea. Being furnished with the provision he made for them, they departed, and proceeded along the coast from the port of Chalchilmeca, called San Juan, where I first landed,t for sixty leagues and upwards, without finding any river or bay where ships could en- ter ; although there were many large ones on the coast, which they sounded in canoes ; and in this manner they arrived at the province of Quacalco abovementioned, [Mazamalco,] where was the river represented on the chart. The governor of this province, named Tuchin- tecla, received them well, and furnished them with ca- noes to explore the river. They found two fathoms and a half of water at its entrance, in the shallowest part, and ascending twelve leagues, the least depth they found was five or six fathoms ; judging from their observations, it was thought that the river continued for thirty leagues of the same depth. There were numerous and large towns on its banks, and the whole province was level, and well fortified, rich in all the productions of the earth, and containing a numerous population, who are not vas- sals or subjects of Muteczuma, but rather his enemies.
- Nowwritten Guazacualco, or Huasasalco, south of Vera Cruz. This passage
is quoted by Humbolt, Nouv. Esp. 1. v., c. xii. t The present Vera Cruz.