CONQUEST OF MEXICO. 126 of the nobles always preceded him on these occasions, carrying three slender rods erect, which I suppose was to give notice of the approach of his person. And when they descended from the litters, he took one of them in his hand, and held it until he reached the place where he was going. So many and various were the ceremo- nies and customs observed by those in the service of Muteczuma, that more space than I can spare would be required for the details, as well as a better memory than I have to recollect them ; since no sultan or other infi- del lord, of whom any knowledge now exists, ever had so much ceremonial in their courts. 17
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