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Page:The despatches of Hernando Cortes.djvu/165

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CONQUEST OF MEXICO. 143 without the loss of more than two men, who were killed by the discharge of a gun, all those that we wished to arrest were taken, and the rest deprived of their arms, promising obedience to your Majesty's officers of justiceĀ ; declaring that until then they had been deceived, having been told that Narvaez had orders from your Majesty, and that I had been guilty of rebellion in this country, and was a traitor to your Majesty, together with many other things of a similar character. As soon as they learned the truth, and understood the bad motives and ruinous purposes of Diego Velazquez and Narvaez, they were struck with the wickedness of the plot, and all ex- pressed their joy that God had seen fit to bring it to an end. And I assure your Majesty that if God had not mj^'Steriously interposed, and the victory had been on the side of Narvaez, there would have been a greater de- struction of life than has taken place among Spaniards for a long period in proportion to the numbers engaged. He would have without doubt executed the design that he had formed, and which Diego Velazquez had com- manded, which was to hang me and many of my com- panions, so that no one would have survived to call them to account. I was afterwards informed by the Indians, that they had reflected in case I was taken by Narvaez, as he had assured them would happen, that it could not be done without serious loss to both parties, and that many Spaniards would fall on both sides. In the mean time they resolved to destroy the men I had left in the city of Mexico, whom they had accordingly attacked. And they intended afterwards to make a united assault on all that remained in the country, so that they and their lands might be set free, and the memory of the Spaniards con- signed to oblivion. Your Highness may be assured that