346 LETTERS OF CORTES. treated that they would look chiefly to the service of your Majesty, and endeavor to content the said Tapia, giving him no occasion for making a disturbance ; and that I was about going to meet him, and to comply with what- ever your Majesty commanded, and the most your ser- vice required. As I was now preparing to depart, the proposed expedition to the river Panuco was suspended, since it was necessary to leave a strong force here during my absence ; but the members of the Council of New Spain entreated me with many protestations not to go, as all this province of Mexico and Temixtitan, having been but a short time reduced, might revolt in my absence, whence much injury would be done to your Majesty's service, and great disturbance caused in the country. They also urged many other arguments and reasons why it was inexpedient for me to leave this city at present ; and added, that they with the authority of the Council would go to Vera Cruz, where the said Tapia resided, examine the orders of your Majesty, and perform all that the royal service demanded. As it seemed so essential to our safety that the said counsellors should go, I wrote by them to Tapia, informing him of what had passed, and that I had authorised Gonzalo de Sandoval, alguazil mayor, Diego de Soto, and Diego de Valdenebro, who were there in the town of Vera Cruz, jointly with the Council of Vera Cruz, and the members of the other town councils, to see and perform whatever the service of your Majesty, and the good of the country required ; for that they were, and still are, the persons whose duty it was to execute such orders. When they reached the place where the said Tapia was, who had already set out on his journey to this city, accompanied by the Padre Fr. Pedro, they requested him
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