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Page:The despatches of Hernando Cortes.djvu/35

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INTRODUCTION. 17 some swine. He sailed from that port to Trinidad, where he bought another ship, three horses, and a thousand bushels of corn. While at this place he received information of the pass- ing of a ship laden with provisions for the mines, and despatch- ed a caravel well armed under the command of Diego de Ordas, with orders to intercept the ship and carry her to Point St. Antonio. Ordas succeeded in overtaking the vessel in the channel of the Gardens, and took her to the place appoint- ed, but the master, whose name was Juan Nunez Sedeno, went to Trinidad with the register or manifest of his cargo, which consisted of 4000 arrobas of bread,* 1500 hams, and a large number of fowls. For these Cortes paid him in part, and gave his note for the balance ; when Sedeno joined the expe- dition. At Trinidad about two hundi'ed men were enlisted, most of whom had accompanied Grijalva, and belonged to that place, Matanzas, Carenas, and other settlements on the island. Sending forward the ships, Cortes himself with some of the men proceeded by land across the island to the Havana, where out of respect to the governor the inhabitants would sell him no provisions ; but two functionaries of the church, one of whom was the collecter of tithes for the bishop, and the other receiver of the Pope's bulls, supplied him with two thousand hams and as many more cargas of maize, cassava and yams. Thus the fleet was comfortably provided with stores, and Cortes began to distribute the men and provisions amongst the different ships. At this port, Cortes was joined by Pedro de Alvarado, Cris- tobal de Olid, Alonso de Avila, Francisco de Moutejo, and others of Grijalva's expedition, who arrived in a caravel, having been on a visit to Diego Velasquez. Amongst these came one Garnica, with letters from Velasquez to Cortes, desiring him to wait until he could come or send to him on matters of import- ance to both of them ; at the same time, he wrote to Diego Ordas and others, requesting them to arrest him. Oi'das accordingly invited Cortes to an entertainment on board of his caravel, think- ing to take him to St. Jago ; but Cortes understanding the diesign,, pretended to have a sickness at his stomach, and declined the

  • An arroba is 25 lbs.