Open main menu

Page:The despatches of Hernando Cortes.djvu/222

This page needs to be proofread.

200 LETTERS OF CORTES. the heir ; which I accordingly did, in the name of your Majesty, with which they were all very much pleased. When I reached this city, I found that the master workmen and carpenters employed on the brigantines had used great expedition in framing the cross-timbers and decks, and had accomplished a reasonable amount of work ; and I at once sent off to Vera Cruz for all the iron and nails that were there, together with the sails, cordage, and other things necessary for the vessels ; and as there was no tar, I set some Spaniards about making some on the adjacent mountains. Thus every provision required for the brigantines was attended to, in order that when it pleased God I should be in the provinces of Mexico and Temixtitan, I might be able to have them transported thither, a di-stance of ten or twelve leagues from the city of Tascaltecal ; and during the fifteen days that I remained in the latter city, I heard nothing else but the hurrying of the workmen, and the preparation of the arms for the purpose of giving security to our march. Two or three days before Christmas, the captain with the foot and horse that had gone against the provinces of Zacatami and Jalacingo arrived, from whom I learned that they had fought with some of the natives, and that at last the latter had sued for peace, some of them volun- tarily, and others through compulsion ; and they brought to me certain caciques of those provinces, whom I par- doned in your Majesty's name, and sent home, notwith- standing they deserved punishment for their rebellion and murder of Christians, upon their promise of good be- haviour hereafter, and that they would prove loyal vas- sals to your Majesty. Thus these difficulties were brought to a close, by means of which the service of