Open main menu

Page:The despatches of Hernando Cortes.djvu/288

This page needs to be proofread.


266 LETTERS OF CORTES. Indians of Tlascala, our allies, and the Spaniards pur- sued the enemy, made great havoc amongst them and cast them into the water on the side of the causeway- opposite that approached by the brigantines. In this manner they proceeded victoriously more than a long league on the causeway, until they reached the spot where I had hove to with the brigantines, as I shall hereafter relate. We proceeded with the brigantines full three leagues in chase of the canoes ; of which those that escaped us took refuge amongst the houses of the city, and as it was after vespers, I ordered the vessels to be called in, and sailed with them to the causeway, where I resolved to land with thirty men to take two small towers of idols, that were enclosed by a low wall of stone and mortar ; and when we had landed, the enemy fought very spiritedly in defence of the towers, which at length after a long and perilous struggle we succeeded in taking. I then immediately caused three heavy iron pieces of ordnance which I had brought with me, to be mounted on the causeway. As the rest of the causeway as far as the city, a distance of half a league, was covered with crowds of the enemy, and both sides of it thronged with canoes full of warriors, I caused one of the guns to be levelled, which raked the causeway, makiag great havoc amongst them. Owing to the carelessness of the gunner at the place where we fired, all the powder we had there was burnt ; the quantity, however, was not large. I immediately sent the same night a brigantine to Izta- palapa, where the alguazil mayor was, about two leagues off, to bring all the powder he had. Although it had been my intention at first, as soon as I embarked in the brigantines, to go to Cuyoacan, and place it in a strong