Open main menu

Page:The despatches of Hernando Cortes.djvu/295

This page needs to be proofread.


CONQUEST OF MEXICO. 273 shots, when they came to another bridge, near a square occupied by some of the principal buildings in the city. This bridge had not been removed, nor had any en- trenchment been made upon it ; for the enemy had not imagined that we should gain that day any part of what had already fallen into our hands, nor had we ourselves expected to accomplish more than one-half as much. I placed a piece of ordnance at the entrance to this square, from which the enemy received much annoyance, al- though they were so thronged that none could be seen to fall. When the Spaniards discovered that there was no water there, from which danger was wont to arise, they resolved to enter the square ; and as soon as the enemy saw this determination carried into effect, and perceived the great multitudes of our allies, although without us they would have had no great fear of them, they turned their backs, and the Spaniards and our allies pursued them, until they took refuge within the enclo- sure of the temple, surrounded by a wall of stone and lime. This enclosure, as described in my former rela- tion, possesses an extent equal to a town containing four hundred families ; it was soon, however, abandoned by -the enemy, and the Spaniards with our allies took pos- session of it, and remained for some within it, and in the towers. When the inhabitants saw that there was no cavalry with the party, they rallied and returned to attack the Spaniards, whom they forcibly expelled from the towers, the court, and the whole enclosure, placing them in cir- cumstances of great danger and difficulty ; and as they ■continued to retreat, they took refuge under the gateways leading to the court. But the enemy annoyed them so much, that, abandoning this position, they retreated