The Log of Christopher Columbus


The log of Christopher Columbus's first voyage to the New World. Translated in 1903 by John Boyd Thacher. Meticulously scanned to text and proofed by Nathan Kennedy in 1998. Unfortunately, footnotes and commentary, italics, and accents were all lost.


(Literally Translated)


Because, Most Christian and very exalted and very excellent and very powerful Princes, King and Queen of the Spains and of the Islands of the Sea, our Lords, in this present year of 1492 after your Highnesses had made an end to the war of the Moors, who were reigning in Europe, and having finished the war in the very great city of Granada, where in this present year on the 2nd day of the month of January, I saw the Royal banners of your Highnesses placed by force of arms on the towers of the Alhambra, which is the fortress of the said City: and I saw the Moorish King come out to the gates of the City and kiss the Royal hands of your Highnesses, and the hands of the Prince, my Lord: and then in that present month, because of the information which I had given your Highnesses about the lands of India, and about a Prince who is called Great Khan, which means in our Romance language, King of Kings,--how he and his predecessors had many times sent to Rome to beg for men learned in our Holy Faith that they might be instructed therein, and that the Holy Father had never furnished them, and so, many peoples believing in idolatries and receiving among themselves sects of perdition, were lost;--your Highnesses, as Catholic Christians and Princes, loving the Holy Christian faith and the spreading of it, and enemies of the sect of Mahomet and of all idolatries and heresies, decided to send me, Christopher Columbus, to the said regions of India, to see the said Princes and the peoples and lands, and learn of their disposition, and of everything, and the measures which could be taken for their conversion to our Holy Faith: and you ordered that I should not go to the east by land, by which it is customary to go, but by way of the west, whence until to-day we do not know certainly that any one has gone. So that, after having banished all the Jews from all your Kingdoms and realms, in the same month of January, your Highnesses ordered me to go with a sufficient fleet to the said regions of India: and for that purpose granted me great favours and ennobled me, that from then henceforward I might entitle myself Don and should be High Admiral of the Ocean-Sea and Viceroy and perpetual Governor of all the islands and continental land which I might discover and acquire, and which from now henceforward might be discovered and acquired in the Ocean-Sea, and that my eldest son should succeed in the same manner, and thus from generation to generation for ever after: and I started from the city of Granada on Saturday, the 12th day of the month of May in the same year 1492: I came to the village of Palos, which is a sea-port, where I fitted out three vessels, very suitable for a similar undertaking: and I left the said port, well supplied with a large quantity of provisions and with many seamen, on the 3rd day of the month of August in the said year on a Friday 3 at the half hour before sunrise, and took my way to the Canary Islands of your Highnesses, which are in the said Ocean-Sea, in order to set out on my voyage from there and sail until I arrived at the Indies, and make known the message of your Highnesses to those Princes, and fulfil the commands which had thus been given me: and for this purpose, I decided to write everything I might do and see and which might take place on this voyage, very punctually from day to day, as will be seen henceforth. Also, Lords and Princes, besides describing each night what takes place during the day, and during the day, the sailings of the night, I propose to make a new chart for navigation, on which I will locate all the sea and the lands of the Ocean-Sea, in their proper places, under their winds; and further, to compose a book and show everything by means of drawing, by the latitude from the equator and by longitude from the west, and above all, it is fitting that I forget sleep, and study the navigation diligently, in order to thus fulfil these duties, which will be a great labour.--


Friday, August 3, 1492, at 8 o'clock we started from the bar of Saltes: we went with a strong sea-breeze 60 miles, which are 15 leagues, toward the south, until sunset: afterwards to the south-west and to the south, quarter south-west, which was the way to the Canaries.


We went to the south-west, quarter south.


We went on our way, more than 40 leagues between day and night.


The helm of the caravel Pinta, upon which was Martin Alonso Pinzon, broke or became disjointed: this was believed and suspected to have been caused by ones Gomes Rascon and Cristo hal Quintero, who owned the caravel, because that voyage was displeasing to them. The Admiral says that before he left, they had discovered the aforesaid men concerned in certain plots and intrigues, as they say. The Admiral was greatly disturbed there, on account of not being able to aid the said caravel without endangering himself his own vessel and says that he became less anxious from knowing that Martin Alonso Pinzon was a brave and intelligent person: finally, between day and night they went 29 leagues.


The helm of the Pinta again became disjointed and they repaired it and went in search of the island of Lanzarote, which is one of the Canary Islands, and they went 25 leagues between day and night.


The pilots of the three caravels differed in opinions as to where they were, and the Admiral came nearest to the truth and wished to go to the Grand Canary to leave the caravel Pinta, as she was getting into bad condition on account of the helm and was leaking and he wished to obtain another caravel there, if one could be found. They could not make the Grand Canary that day.


The Admiral was not able to reach Gomera until Sunday in the night, and Martin Alonso remained on that coast of the Grand Canary by order of the Admiral, because he was not able to navigate. Afterwards the Admiral reached Canaria (or Tenerife) and they repaired the Pinta very well, with much labour and great efforts on the part of the Admiral, Martin Alonso and the others: and finally they came to Gomera. They saw a great fire issue from the mountains of the island of Tenerife of which the greater part is very high. They made the sails of the Pinta round, as they were lateen sails. He returned to Gomera, Sunday, Sept 2, with the Pinta repaired.

The Admiral says that many honourable Spaniards, inhabitants of the island of Hierro, swore that they were on Gomera with Dofia Inez Peraza, mother of Guillen Peraza, who was afterward the first Count of Gomera, and that each year they saw land to the west of the Canaries {which is to the west} and others from Gomera affirmed the same thing under oath. The Admiral says here that he remembers that being in Portugal in the year 1484, a man came from the island of Madeira to the King to beg him for a caravel in order to go to this land I which he saw, which he swore he saw each year and always in the same manner: and he also says he remembers that the same was said in the Azores Islands, and that all were agreed as to the route, the appearance and size. Having then taken water and wood and meat, and the other things which the men had, whom the Admiral left on Gomera when he went to the Island of Canaria to repair the caravel Pinta, he finally set sail from the said island of Gomera with his three caravels on Thursday, Sept 6.


He started on that day in the morning from the harbour of Gomera and took his course to go on his voyage: and the Admiral learned from a caravel which came from the island of Hierro, that three caravels from Portugal were sailing about there, in order to capture him: it must have been through the envy felt by the King of Portugal, because of the Admiral's going to Castile: and he sailed all that day and night in a calm and in the morning found himself between Gomera and Tenerife.


He was becalmed all Friday and Saturday until 3 o'clock at night.


On Saturday at 3 o'clock in the night, the north-east wind commenced to blow, and he took his course and route to the west he had a heavy head sea, which obstructed his way; and he sailed that day and night about 9 leagues.


He went 19 leagues that day and resolved to reckon less than he had gone, so that if the voyage should be a long one, his people would not be frightened and discouraged. During the night he went 120 miles which are 30 leagues, at the rate of 10 miles an hour. The sailors steered badly, falling off to the north-east quarter and even half of the quarter {a la media partida} about which the Admiral many times reprimanded them.


During that day and night he went 60 leagues, at the rate of 10 miles an hour, which are 2 1/2 leagues: but he computed only 48 leagues, in order not to frighten the people if the voyage should be lengthy.


That day they sailed on their way, which was to the west, and went 20 leagues and more, and they saw a large piece of a mast belonging to a ship of 120 tons burden, and they were not able to take it. That night--about 20 leagues, but he did not count more than 16 for the said reason.


This day, pursuing his course, they went 33 leagues during the night and day, computing less for the said reason.


This day and night, going on their way which was to the west, they went 33 leagues and computed 3 or 4 less. The currents were against them. On this day at the beginning of the night, the needles declined to the north-west, and in the morning they declined a trifle.


During that day and night they sailed on their way to the west and went 20 leagues: he computed something less. Here the persons on the caravel Niña said they had seen a jay (garjao) and a ring-tail (rabo de junco) and these birds never go more than 25 leagues from land at most.


He sailed that day and night 27 leagues upon his course to the west and somewhat more, and at the beginning of this night they saw a marvellous branch of fire fall from the heavens into the sea, 4 or 5 leagues distant from them.


They sailed that day and night on their course to the west: they went 39 leagues but be computed only 36: there were some clouds that day and it rained slightly. The Admiral says here, that now and always from this time forward the air was extremely temperate, and that it was a great pleasure to enjoy the mornings and that nothing was lacking except to hear nightingales. He says that the weather was like April in Andalusia. Here they began to see many tufts of very green grass, which according to appearance had not long been detached from the land, on which account every one judged they were near some island: but not the continental land, according to the Admiral, who says, "because I make the continental land farther onward."


He sailed on his way to the west, and they went 50 leagues and more during the day and night. He did not register more than 47. The current helped them. They frequently saw a great deal of grass and it was grass from rocks, and it came from the west. They judged that they were near land. The pilots took the position of the North Star, marking it, and they found that the needles declined to the north-west a good quarter, and the sailors were afraid and were troubled, and did not say for what reason. The Admiral knew it and ordered them to take the position of the North Star again at dawn and they found that the needles were good. This was because the star which appears, moves, and the needles do not. At dawn that Monday they saw much more grass, which appeared to be grass from rivers, in which they found a live craw-fish which the Admiral kept, and he says that those were sure indications of land because they are not found 80 leagues from land. They found the water of the sea less salt since they left the Canaries, the breezes always milder. They all became very joyful and the fastest ships went onward in order to be first to see land. They saw many tunny-fish {toninas} and the people on the Niña killed one. The Admiral Says here that those indications came from the west, "where I hope in that exalted God in whose hands are all victories that land will very soon appear." This morning he says he saw a white bird which is called ring-tail {rabo de junco} which is not accustomed to sleep on the sea.


He sailed that day and night, and they went more than 55 leagues, but he only noted 48. All these days the sea was very calm, as in the River of Seville. This day Martin Alonso with the Pinta, which was a fast sailor, did not wait for the others because he said to the Admiral from his caravel, that he had seen a great number of birds go toward the west, and that night he hoped to see land, and for that reason he was sailing so fast. A large dark cloud appeared to the north, which is a sign that land is near.


He sailed on his way and during the day and night went 25 leagues, because it was very calm: he wrote 22 leagues. This day at 10 o'clock a pelican came to the ship and another came in the afternoon. These birds are not accustomed to go 20 leagues from land. There were slight rains without wind, which is a certain indication of land. The Admiral did not wish to delay, beating about in order to find out if there was land, but he was sure that toward the north and toward the south there were Some islands, as in fact there were, and he was going between them: because it was his desire to go forward toward the Indies and the weather is pleasant; as, God pleasing, in returning, everything would be Seen. These are his words...Here the pilots discovered their location. The Niña's pilot found himself 440 leagues from the Canaries. The Pinta's 420 leagues, and the pilot of the vessel, upon which was the Admiral, exactly 400.


He sailed this day to the west, quarter north-west and half the quarter {a la media partida} because the winds changed many times with the calm they went as much as 7 or 8 leagues. Two pelicans came to the ship, and afterwards another which was an indication that land was near: and they saw a great deal of grass, although the previous day they had not seen any. They took a bird with their hands which was like a jay: it was a river-bird and not a sea-bird and had feet like a gull. At dawn two or three small land birds came singing to the ships: and afterwards disappeared before sunrise. Afterwards a pelican came from the west-north-west and went to the south-east, which was an indication that it left land to the west-north-west, because these birds sleep on land and in the morning they go to the sea in search of food, and do not go 20 leagues from land.


Most of that day it was calm, and afterwards there was some wind. They went on their way and during both the day and night did not make as much as 13 leagues. At dawn they found so much grass that the sea appeared to be coagulated with it and it came from the west. They saw a pelican. The sea was very calm like a river and the breezes the best in the world. They saw a whale which is an indication that they were near land, because they always remain near it.


They sailed west-north-west, more or less, inclining to one side and the other. They went about 30 leagues. They saw almost no grass. They saw some petrels {pardelas} and another bird. The Admiral says here: "This contrary wind was very necessary to me, because my people were becoming very much excited, as they thought that on those seas no winds blew in order to return to Spain." For a part of the day there was no grass, afterwards it was very thick.


He sailed to the north-west and at times to the north quarter and at times on his course, which was to the west, and they went as much as 22 leagues. They saw a turtle dove and a pelican, and another small river-bird and other white birds. There was a great deal of grass and they found craw-fish in it, and as the sea was calm and quiet the people murmured, saying that, since there was not much sea in that region, the wind would never blow for the return to Spain: but afterwards the sea rose greatly and without wind, which terrified them, because of which the Admiral says here: "So that the high sea was very necessary to me, as it came to pass once before in the time when the Jews went out of Egypt with Moses, who took them from captivity."


He sailed on his course to the west day and night, and they went about 14 1/2 leagues. He noted 12. A pelican came to the ship and they saw many petrels.


It was very calm this day and afterwards the wind blew: and they went on their course to the west until night. The Admiral talked with Martin Alonso Pinzon, Captain of the other caravel Pinta, in regard to a chart which he had sent to Martin Alonso on his caravel three days before, where, as it appears, the Admiral had drawn certain islands in that sea, and Martin Alonso said that they were in that region, and the Admiral replied that it appeared so to him: but since they had not encountered them, it must have been caused by the currents which had continually forced the ships to the north-east and because they had not gone as far as the pilots said: and then having arrived at this conclusion the Admiral told Martin Alonso to send him the said chart and it being sent by a cord the Admiral began to mark out places upon it with his pilot and sailors. At sunset Martin Alonso mounted in the stern of his ship and with great joy called to the Admiral, begging a reward from him as he saw land: and when the Admiral heard him affirm this, he says that he commenced on his knees to give thanks to Our Lord, and Martin Alonso said Gloria in Excelsis Deo with his people: the Admiral's people did the same and the people on the Niña all ascended the mast and rigging: and all affirmed that it was land and it appeared so to the Admiral, and that it might be 25 leagues away. They all affirmed until night that it was land. The Admiral ordered that the course, which was to the west, should be changed and that they should all go to the south-west, where the land had appeared. That day they went to the west about 4 1/2 leagues; and during the night 17 leagues to the south-east which makes 21 leagues; although he told the people 13 leagues, because he always pretended to the people that he was making little headway, that the journey might not appear long to them. So that he wrote two courses for that voyage, the shorter was the false course and the longer the true one. The sea was very calm for which reason many sailors began to swim. They saw many dorados and other fish.


He sailed on his course to the west, until after mid-day. Then they went to the south-west until they learned that what they had said was land was only the sky. They went 31 leagues during the day and night and he computed for the people 24. The sea was like a river, the breezes pleasant and very mild.


He sailed on his course to the west, and went during the day and night 24 leagues: he told the people 20 leagues: they saw many dorados, killed one and saw a ring-tail.


He sailed on his course to the west. They went in a calm, 14 leagues during the day and night. He computed 13. They found little grass. They took two dorados and more were taken on the other ships.


He sailed on his course to the west. They went 24 leagues and he told the people 21. Because of calms which befell them they went only a short distance during the day and night. They saw a bird which is called a frigate-pelican which makes the pelicans yield up what they have eaten in order to eat it himself, and obtains his sustenance in that manner only. It is a sea-bird but does not rest on the sea nor go 20 leagues from land. There are many of these birds on the Cape Verde Islands. Afterwards they saw two pelicans. The breezes were very pleasing and delightful and he says that only the song of the nightingale was lacking: and the sea was smooth as a river. In three times afterwards three pelicans appeared and a frigate-pelican. They saw a great deal of grass.


He sailed on his course to the west, and went 14 leagues during the day and night on account of the calms. He counted 11. Four ring-tails came to the ship, which is a great indication of land, because so many birds of one kind together is a sign that they are not astray or lost. They saw four pelicans in two different times and much grass. Nota: that "the stars which are called the guards when night falls are near the arm in the west, and at dawn they are on the line below the arm to the north-east, as it appears that during all the night they do not go more than three lines, which are nine hours, and this each night." The Admiral says this here. Also at nightfall the needles decline to the north-west one quarter, and at dawn they are exactly in the direction of the North Star: by which it appears that the North Star moves the same as the other stars and the needles always indicate the truth.


He sailed on his course to the west. They went 25 leagues and he computed to the people 20 leagues. They had a great shower. To-day the pilot of the Admiral at the coming of day feared that they had gone from the island of Hierro, 578 leagues westward to this place. The lesser account which the Admiral showed to the people was 584 leagues; but the true account, which the Admiral judged to be correct and kept secret, was 707 leagues.


He sailed on his way to the west 39 leagues during the day and night, and told the people about 30 leagues; with the sea continually calm and favourable. Many thanks be given God, said the Admiral here. Grass came from the east to the west, contrary to what had happened before. Many fish appeared: one was killed. They saw a white bird which appeared to be a gull.


He sailed on his customary route and they went 47 leagues. He told the people 40 leagues. Petrels appeared, a great quantity of grass, some very old and some very fresh, and it bore a kind of fruit, and they saw 110 birds. The Admiral believed that the islands he had drawn on his chart lay back of them. The Admiral says here, that he did not wish to remain beating about, the past week and those days when there were so many signs of land, although he had information about certain islands in that region,--in order not to be delayed, as his object was to reach the Indies: and if he had delayed, he says it would not have been good judgment.


He sailed on his way to the west and they went during the day and night 63 leagues. He told the people 46 leagues. More than 40 petrels came to the ship together, and two pelicans, and a youth on board the caravel hit one with a stone. A frigate-pelican came to the vessel and a white bird like a gull.


He sailed on his course, going about 11 miles an hour. They went about 57 leagues during the day and night, as the wind abated somewhat at night. He counted to his people 45 leagues. The sea was pleasant and calm. Many thanks, he says, be given to God. The breeze was very soft and temperate. No grass, many petrels. Many flying-fish flew on to the ship.


He sailed on his course to the west and they went 40 leagues during the day and night. He told the people 33 leagues. This night, Martin Alonso said that it would be well to sail to the south-west, quarter west {a la cuarta del Oueste, a la parte del Sudueste}. And it appeared to the Admiral that Martin Alonso did not say this in order to go to the island of Cipango. And the Admiral saw that if they missed their way, they would not be able to find land so quickly, and that it was better to go to the continental land at once, and afterwards to the islands.


He sailed on his way to the west. They went 12 miles per hour for two hours, and afterwards 8 miles per hour, and they went 23 leagues up to one hour after sunrise: he told the people 18. On this day at sunrise, as they were all sailing as fast as possible in order to see land first and enjoy the reward which the Sovereigns had promised to whomever should first see land, the caravel Niña which was ahead on account of being a fast sailor, raised a banner on top of the mast and fired a lombard as a signal that they saw land, because the Admiral had ordered this to be done. He had also ordered that the vessels should all unite at sunrise and sunset, because these two times are more suitable for seeing a long distance on account of the disappearance of the mists. As in the afternoon the people on the Niña did not see land, which they thought they had seen and as a great multitude of birds passed from the north to the south-west, for which cause it was reasonable to believe that they were going to sleep on land or were perhaps flying from winter which must be approaching in the countries from whence they came, as the Admiral knew that the Portuguese discovered the greater part of the islands in their possession by the birds:--For these reasons the Admiral resolved to change his course from the west, and turn his prow to the west-south-west, with the determination of pursuing that course for two days. He began this course one hour before sunset. During all the night they went about 5 leagues, and 23 during the day: they went in all 28 leagues during the night and day.


He sailed to the west-south-west and they went about 11 1/2 or 12 leagues and from time to time it appears that they went 15 miles per hour during the night, if the account is not mendacious. The sea was like the River of Seville, thanks to God, says the Admiral. The breezes were very soft as at Seville in April and it is a pleasure to be there, they are so fragrant. The grass appeared very fresh. There were many small land-birds and they took one which was flying to the south-west. There were jays, ducks, and a pelican.


He sailed to the south-west and went five leagues. The wind changed and he ran to the west, quarter north-west and went four leagues. Afterwards in all he went 11 leagues by day and 20 1/2 leagues by day and night. He told the people 17 leagues. All night they heard birds passing.


He sailed to the west-south-west and they went at the rate of 10 miles per hour and at times 12, and sometimes 7, and during the day and night they made 59 leagues. He told the people 44 leagues and no more. Here the people could no longer suffer the journey. They complained of the long voyage: but the Admiral encouraged them as well as he was able, giving them good hope of the benefits they would receive, and adding that for the rest it was useless to complain since he had come in search of the Indies, and thus he must pursue his journey until he found them, with the aid of our Lord.


He sailed to the west-south-west. They had a much higher sea than they had had in all the voyage. They saw petrels and a green branch near the ship. Those on the caravel Pinta saw a reed and a stick and they took another small stick formed as it appeared with iron, and a piece of a reed and other grass which grows on land, and a small board. Those on the caravel Niña also saw other indications of land and a little branch full of dog-roses. With these signs every one breathed and rejoiced. They went 27 leagues during this day up to sunset.

After sunset he sailed on his first course to the west. They went 12 miles each hour and up to two hours after midnight they went about 90 miles which are 22 1/2 leagues. And because the caravel Pinta was the best sailor and was going ahead of the Admiral, land was discovered by her people and the signs which the Admiral had ordered were made. A sailor called Rodrigo de Traina saw this land first, although the Admiral at 10 o'clock at night being in the stern forecastle {castillo de popa} saw a light, but it was so concealed that he would not declare it to be land: but he called Pero Gutierrez Groom of the Chamber of the King, and said to him that it appeared to be a light, and asked him to look at it: and he did so and saw it. He also told Rodrigo Sanchez de Segovia, whom the King and Queen sent with the fleet as Inspector, who saw nothing because he was not where he could see it. After the Admiral told it, it was seen once or twice, and it was like a small wax candle which rose and fell, which hardly appeared to be an indication of land. But the Admiral was certain that they were near land. For this reason, when they said the Salve which all the sailors are in the habit of saying and singing in their way and they were all assembled together, the Admiral implored and admonished them to guard the stern forecastle well and search diligently for land and said that to whomever should first see land he would then give a silk doublet, besides the other gifts which the Sovereigns had promised them, which was an annuity of 10,000 maravedis to whomever should first see land. At two hours after midnight the land appeared, from which they were about two leagues distant. They lowered all the sails and remained with the cross-jack-sail, which is the great sail without bonnets, and lay to, standing off and on until the day, Friday, when they reached a small island of the Lucayas, which is called in the language of the Indians, Guanahani. Then they saw naked people and the Admiral landed in the armed boat with Martin Alonso Pinzon and Vincente Yafiez, his brother, who was captain of the Niña. The Admiral took the royal banner and the two captains had two banners of the Green Cross, which the Admiral carried on all the ships as a sign, with an F. and a Y. The crown of the Sovereigns surmounted each letter and one was one side of the + and the other the other side. Having landed they saw very green trees and much water and many fruits of different kinds. The Admiral called the two captains and the others who landed and Rodrigo Descoredo, Notary of all the Fleet, and Rodrigo Sanchez of Segovia, and told them to hear him witness and testify that he, in the presence of them all, was taking, as in fact he took possession of the said isle, for the King and for the Queen, his Lords, making the protestations which were required, as contained more at length in the depositions which were made there in writing. Then many of the people of the island gathered there. The following is in the exact words of the Admiral in his book of his first voyage and discovery of these Indies:

"That they might feel great friendship for us {he says} and because I knew they were a people who would better be freed and converted to our Holy Faith by love than by force,--I gave them some red caps and some glass beads which they placed around their necks, and many other things of small value with which they were greatly pleased, and were so friendly to us that it was wonderful. They afterwards came swimming to the two ships where we were, and bringing us parrots and cotton thread wound in balls and spears and many other things, and they traded them with us for other things which we gave them, such as small glass beads and hawk's bells. Finally they took everything and willingly gave what things they had. Further, it appeared to me that they were a very poor people, in everything. They all go naked as their mothers gave them birth, and the women also, although I only saw one of the latter who was very young, and all those whom I saw were young men, none more than thirty years of age. They were very well built with very handsome bodies, and very good faces. Their hair was almost as coarse as horses' tails and short, and they wear it over the eyebrows, except a small quantity behind, which they wear long and never cut. Some paint themselves blackish, and they are of the colour of the inhabitants of the Canaries, neither black nor white, and some paint themselves white, some red, some whatever colour they find: and some paint their faces, some all the body, some only the eyes, and some only the nose. They do not carry arms nor know what they are, because I showed them swords and they took them by the edge and ignorantly cut themselves. They have no iron: their spears are sticks without iron, and some of them have a fish's tooth at the end and others have other things. They are all generally of good height, of pleasing appearance and well built: I saw some who had indications of wounds on their bodies, and I asked them by signs if it was that, and they showed me that other people came there from other islands near by and wished to capture them and they defended themselves: and I believed and believe, that they come here from the continental land to take them captive. They must be good servants and intelligent, as I see that they very quickly say all that is said to them, and I believe that they would easily become Christians, as it appeared to me that they had no sect. If it please our Lord, at the time of my departure, I will take six, of them from here to your Highnesses that they may learn to speak. I saw no beast of any kind except parrots on this island." All are the words of the Admiral.


"At dawn many of these men came to the shore, all young men as I have said and all of good height, a very handsome people. Their hair is not curly but hanging and coarse like horsehair, and all the forehead and head is very wide, more than any other race seen until now, and their eyes are very handsome and not small. And none of them are blackish hut the colour of the inhabitants of the Canaries nor should anything else be expected since this place is on a line east and west with the island of Hierro in the Canaries. Their legs are in general very straight and they are not corpulent, but very well formed. They came to the ship with canoes, which are made from the trunk of a tree, like a long boat and all in one piece, and very wonderfully fashioned for the country, and large enough so that 40 or 45 men came In some of them, and others were smaller, some so small that only one man came in them. They rowed with a paddle {como de fornero} and go wonderfully well; and if they upset, then they all commence to swim and bail them out with gourds, which they carry. They brought balls of spun cotton and parrots and spears and other small things which it would be tedious to write about, and gave everything for whatever might be given them. And I was attentive and sought to learn whether they had gold and I saw that some of them wore a small piece suspended from a hole they have in the nose: and I was able to understand by signs that, going to the south or going around the island to the south, there was a King who had large vessels of gold and who had a great deal of it. I tried to have them go there and afterward saw that they were not interested in going. I determined to wait until afternoon of the next day and then leave for the south-west, for according to what many of them showed me, they said that there was land to the south and to tile south-west and to the north-west: and that these people from the north-west came to fight them many times and thus to go to the south-west in search of gold and precious stones. This island is very large and very level and has very green trees and many waters and a very large lake in the centre, without any mountain, and all so green that it is a pleasure to behold it. The people are very mild and on account of desiring our things, believing that they will not be given them without they give something, and they have nothing,--they take what they can. and then throw themselves into the water and swim. But they give all they have for whatever thing may be given them. They traded for even pieces of pitchers and broken glasses so that I saw 16 balls of cotton given for three ceotis of Portugal which are worth one blanca of Castile, and in the balls there would be more than an arroba of spun cotton. I forbade this and would not allow anything to be taken unless I should order everything taken for your Highnesses if there is a quantity. It cotton grows here on this island, but on account of brevity of time I could not give an account of everything: and also the gold which they wear hanging at the nose is found here. But in order not to lose time I wish to go and see it I can encounter the island of Cipango. Now, as it was night, all went to land with their canoes.


"At dawn, I ordered the ship's small boat prepared and the boats belonging to the caravels and went along the island toward the north-north-east to see the other part of it, which was the opposite part from the east and also to see the villages: and I saw then two or three, and the people all came to the shore calling us and giving thanks to God; some brought us water, others brought other things to eat. Others when they saw that I did not care to land threw themselves into the sea and came swimming and we understood that they asked us if we came from heaven. An old man came in to the boat and the others called loudly to all the men and women: Come and see the men who came from heaven: bring them something to eat and drink. Many came and many women, each one with something, giving thinks to God, throwing themselves on the ground and lifting their hands toward heaven, and afterwards they called loudly to us to go to land; but I was afraid because of seeing a great reef of rocks which encircles all that island and the water is deep within and forms a port for as many ships as there are in Christendom: and the entrance to it is very tortuous. It is true there are some shoals in it, but the sea does not move any more than in a well. And I went this morning in order to see all this, that I might be able to give an account of everything to your Highnesses and also to see where I might be able to build a fortress, and I saw a piece of land formed like an island, although it is not one, on which there were six houses, but which could be made an island in two days. Although I do not believe it to be necessary, because this people are very simple in matters of arms, as your Highnesses will see by the seven which I took captive to be carried along and learn our speech and then be returned to their country. But when your Highnesses order it, all can be taken, and carried to Castile or held captives on the island itself, because with 50 men all can be subjugated and made to do everything which is desired. Then, near the said small island, there were orchards of trees, the most beautiful that I saw, and as green and with leaves like those of Castile in the months of April and May, and there was much water. I saw all that harbour and afterward I returned to the ship and made sail and saw so many islands that I could not decide which to visit first, and those men whom I had taken, told me by signs, that there were many, and so many that they could not be numbered, and they enumerated by their names more than one hundred. Therefore I looked for the largest and determined to go to it, and this I am doing. It may be five leagues distant from this island of San Salvador, and some of the others are farther from it, some not as far. All are very level without mountains and very fertile and all inhabited, and the inhabitants make war against each other although they are very simple and fine looking men."


"I had been standing off and on this night for fear of not reaching land to anchor before morning, not knowing whether the coast was free from shoals or not, and so as to be able to hoist the sails at dawn. And as the island might be more than five leagues distant, rather it was about seven leagues, and the tide detained me, it was about mid-day when I reached the said island; and I found that the side which is toward San Salvador runs north and south a distance of five leagues, and the other side which I followed extended east and west a distance of more than ten leagues. And as from this island I saw another larger one to the west, I hoisted the sails in order to go all that day until night, because I would not have been able to go even as far as the point at the west: to this island I gave the name of the Isla de Santa Maria de la Concepcion, and almost at sunset I anchored near the said Cape to learn if there was gold there, because the natives whom I had caused to be taken on the island of San Salvador told me that the people there wore very large golden bracelets on the legs and arms. I quite believe that everything they said was a hoax in order to flee, Nevertheless my intention was, not to pass by any island of which I did not take possession, although having taken one, it could not be said that all were taken: and I anchored and remained there until to-day, Tuesday, when at dawn I went to land with the boats armed and I landed, and those people, who were many and as naked and of the same condition as those of the other island of San Salvador, allowed us to go on the island and gave us what we asked of them. And because the wind blew across strongly from the south-east, I would not remain there and left for the ship, and there was a large canoe beside the caravel Niña and one of the men from the island of San Salvador who was on board the caravel threw himself into the sea and went away in the canoe, and the night before at midnight, the other having thrown {blank in original} and went after the canoe, which fled {a medio echado el otro...y fue atras la almadia, la qual fugoi} so that there never was a boat which could overtake it, although we followed it a long way. Nevertheless he gained the land and they left the canoe, and some of my company went on land after them and all scattered like chickens, and we took the canoe which they had left, alongside the caravel Niña, where already there was coming from another point another small canoe with a man who came to barter a ball of cotton; and some sailors threw themselves into the sea and took him, because he would not enter the caravel: and I, being on the poop of the ship, saw everything and sent for him and gave him a red bonnet and some small beads of green glass which I put on his arm and two hawk's bells, which I put in his ears, and I ordered his canoe, which also was in the boat, to be returned to him and I sent him to land: and I made sail then in order to go to the other large island which I saw to the west, and I ordered the other canoe, which the caravel Niña was towing at the stern, to be loosened and I afterwards watched the shore at the time of the landing of the other Indian to whom I had given the aforesaid things and from whom I did not take the ball of cotton, although he wished to give it to me: and all the others went to him and he wondered greatly and it appeared to him that we were very good people and that the other Indian who had fled had done us some injury, and that we were taking him on this account: and it was for this purpose that I pursued this conduct with him and ordered him set at liberty and gave him the said things, in order that they should hold us in this esteem and that another time when your Highnesses send here again they may not receive your people badly: and all that I gave them was not worth four maravedis. And thus I departed, which might be at 10 o'clock, with the wind south-east and inclining toward south, in order to go to this other island which is very large and where all these men whom I am bringing from the island of San Salvador make signs that there is a great deal of gold and that they wear bracelets of it on their arms and on their legs and in their ears and in their noses and on their breasts. And it was nine leagues from this island of Santa Maria to this other island east to west, and all this part of the island runs north-west to south-east. And it appears that there might well be more than 28 leagues of this coast on this side. And it is very level without any mountain, the same as the coasts of the islands of San Salvador and Santa Maria and all the coasts are free from rocks, except that all have some rocks under water near the land, on account of which it is necessary to keep the eyes open when desirous of anchoring, and not to anchor very near land, although the waters are always very clear and the bottom can be seen. And at a distance of two lombard shots from all those islands the water is so deep that the bottom cannot be reached. These islands are very green and fertile and the breezes are very soft and there may be many things which I do not know, because I did not wish to stop, in order to discover and search many islands to find gold. And since these people make signs thus, that they wear gold on their arms and legs,--and it is gold, because I showed them some pieces which I have,--I cannot fail with the aid of our Lord, in finding it where it is native. And being in the middle of the gulf between these two islands, that is to say, the island of Santa Maria and this large one, which I named Fernandina, I found a man alone in a canoe who was going from the island of Santa Maria to Fernandina, and was carrying a little of his bread which might have been about as large as the fist, and a gourd of water, and a piece of reddish earth reduced to dust and afterwards kneaded, and some dry leaves I which must be a thing very much appreciated among them because they had already brought me some of them as a present at San Salvador: and he was carrying a small basket of their kind, in which he had a string of small glass beads and two blancas, by which I knew that he came from the island of San Salvador, and had gone from there to Santa Maria and was going to Fernandina. He came to the ship: I caused him to enter it, as he asked to do so, and I had his canoe placed on the ship and had everything which he was carrying guarded: and I ordered that bread and honey be given him to eat and something to drink. And I will go to Fernandina thus and will give him everything which belongs to him, that he may give good reports of us. So that, when your Highnesses send here, our Lord pleasing, those who come may receive honour and the Indians will give them of everything which they have."


I started from the islands of Santa Maria de la Concepcion when it was already about noon, for the island of Fernandina, which appears to be very large and is to the west, and I navigated all that day in a calm: I was not able to arrive in time to see the bottom in order to anchor in a clear place, because it is necessary to take great pains about this so as not to lose the anchors: and so I stood off and on all this night until day when I came to a village, where I anchored, and at which that man whom I found yesterday in the canoe in the middle of the gulf had arrived. He had given such good reports of us that all this night there was no lack of canoes alongside the ship, as the Indians brought us water and everything which they had. I ordered something given to each one of them, that is to say some little beads, 10 or 12 of them of glass on a thread, and some brass timbrels of the kind which are worth a maravedi each in Castile, and some leather straps, all of which they consider of the greatest excellence, and also ordered molasses to be given them that they might eat when they came on the ship: and then at the hour of tercia I sent the ship's small vessel on land for water, and they very willingly showed my people where the water was, and they themselves brought the barrels full to the vessel, and were very greatly rejoiced to give us pleasure. This island is very large and I have determined to sail around it, because according to what I can understand, in it or near it there are mines of gold. This island is eight leagues distant from the island of Santa Maria, almost east by west: and this point to which I came and all this coast extends north-north-west by south-south-east and I saw fully 20 leagues of it, but it did not end there. Now while writing this, I made sail with the wind from the south in order to endeavour to sail around all the island, and work until I find Samoat, which is the island or city where the gold is, as all those Indians who come here on the ship, say: and as those Indians from the island of San Salvador and Santa Maria told us. The people of Fernandina are similar to those of the said islands, and have the same language and customs, except that these appear to me to be somewhat more domestic, of better manners and more subtle, because I see that they have brought cotton here to the ship and other little things for which they know better how to exact payment than the others: and also on this island I saw cotton cloths made like head-dresses {mantillas} and the people are better disposed and the women wear in front a little piece of cotton which barely covers their genital parts. This island is very green and level and fertile, and I have no doubt that panic-grass {panizo} may be sown and harvested all the year, and also all other things: and I saw many trees very different from ours and among them many which had branches of many kinds and all from one trunk, and one little branch is of one kind and another of another kind and so different that it is the greatest wonder in the world, how great is the difference between one kind and another. For example, one branch had leaves like canes, and another like mastich-trees: and thus, on one tree alone, there are five or six of these kinds, and all are different: neither are they grafted, that it may he said that grafting does it; moreover are they found upon the mountains. Neither do these people take any care of them. They do not know any sect and I believe that they would very soon become Christians because they possess very good intelligence. There are fish here so different from ours that it is wonderful. There are some formed like cocks of the finest colours in the world, blue, yellow, red and of all colours, and others tinted in a thousand manners: and the colours are so fine that there is not a man who does not wonder at them, and who does not take great pleasure in seeing them. Also there are whales. I saw no beasts on land of any kind except parrots and lizards. A boy told me that he saw a large snake. I did not see sheep nor goats, nor any other beast; although I have been here a very short time, as it is mid-day, still if there had been any, I could not have missed seeing some. I will write about the circuit of this island after I have sailed around it."


"At noon I started from the village where I was anchored and where I took water, in order to go and sail around this island of Fernandina, and the wind was south-west and south: and as my wish would be to follow this coast of this island where I was, to the south-east, because it extends thus all north-north-west and south-south-east: and I wished to follow the said course of the south and south-east, because,--in that region, according to these Indians I am bringing and another from whom I had indications,--in that region of the south is the island which they call Samoet, where gold is found. And Martin Alonzo Pinzon, captain of the caravel Pinta, upon which I sent three of these Indians, came to me and told me that one of them had very positively given him to understand that he would more quickly sail around the island in the direction of the north-north-west. I saw that the wind was not helping me on the course I wished to follow and was favourable for the other. I made sail to the north-north-west and when I was near the point of the island, at a distance of two leagues, I found a very wonderful harbour with one mouth: although it can be called two mouths because it has an island in the centre. And these mouths are both very narrow and the harbour is wide enough within for 100 ships, if it were clear and deep, and deep enough at the entrance. It appeared to me right to examine it well and sound it, and thus I anchored outside of it and entered it with all the boats belonging to the ships and we saw that it was not deep. And because I thought when I saw it that it was the mouth of some river, I had ordered barrels brought in order to take water, and on land I found some eight or ten men who immediately came to us and showed us the village near there, where I sent the people for water, one part with arms, others with barrels, and so they took it: and because it wasn't a little distance, I was detained for the space of two hours. During this time I walked among those trees, which was a more beautiful thing to see than any other I had ever seen: seeing so much verdure in such condition as it is in the month of May in Andalusia, and the trees were all as different from ours as day from night and also the fruits and grasses and the stones and all the things. It is true that some trees were of the same nature as those which are in Castile, although there was a very great difference, and there were so many other trees of other kinds that there is no one who can identify them or compare them to those in Castile. All the people were the same as the others already spoken of, of the same condition, naked in the same manner and of the same stature and they gave what they had for whatever thing we might give them: and here I saw that some of the ship's boys bartered spears for some worthless little pieces of broken porringers and glass, and the others who went for the water told me how they had been in the houses of the Indians and that they were very well swept and clean within, and their beds and coverings were of things which are like nets of cotton. Their houses are all like tents and are very high with good chimneys: but I did not see any village among many which I saw, which had more than 12 to 15 houses. Here they found that the married women wore breech-cloths of cotton and the young girls none, except some who were already eighteen years of age. And there were dogs here, mastiffs and lap-dogs {blanchetes} and they found an Indian here who had a piece of gold in his nose, which might be as large as half a castellano, on which they saw letters. I scolded them because they did not trade with him for it, and give him whatever he demanded in order to see what it was, and whose money it was: and they replied to me that he did not dare to exchange it with them. After having taken the water, I returned to the ship and made sail and went to the north-west, so far that I discovered all that part of the island as far as the coast which extends east and west, and then all these Indians said again that this island was smaller than the island of Samoet, and that it would be well to return backward in order to reach it more quickly. There the wind calmed and then commenced to blow west-north-west, which was contrary for our return to the place whence we had come, and so I returned and navigated all the past night to the east-south-east and sometimes to the east altogether and sometimes to the south-east. And I did this in order to get away from the land because it was very dark and cloudy and the weather was very threatening. The wind was light and did not allow me to reach land in order to anchor. Therefore this night it rained very hard from midnight almost until day, and it is yet cloudy and ready to rain: and we are at the point of the island on the south-eastern side where I hoped to anchor until the weather clears, in order to see the other islands to which I must go: and so it has rained a little or a great deal every day since I have been in these Indies. Your Highnesses may believe that this land is most fertile and temperate and level and the best there is in the world."


"After the weather cleared I followed the wind and went around the island when I was able, and anchored when the weather was not suitable to navigate: but I did not land, and at dawn I made sail."


"At dawn I weighed the anchors and sent the caravel Pinta to the east and south-east and the caravel Niña to the south-south-east, and I, with the ship went to the south-east, having given orders that both should follow that course until mid-day, and then that both should change their courses and seek me: and then, before three hours had passed, we saw an island to the east towards which we directed ourselves, and all three ships reached it at the northern point before mid-day, where there is a rocky islet and a reef outside of it to the north, and another between it and the large island: The men from San Salvador whom I am carrying, named this island Saomete, and I named it Isabella. The wind was north and the said rocky islet was in the course of the island of Fernandina, from whence I had sailed east by west. And the coast of Isabella then extended from the rocky islet to the west 12 leagues, as far as a cape which I called the Cabo Hermoso, which is on the western side: and thus it is beautiful, round and very prominent with no shoals outside of it and at the point it is rocky and low, and farther inland there is a sandy beach, as is almost all the said coast: and I anchored here this night, Friday, until morning. All this coast and the part of the island which I saw, is almost all a beach and the island is the most beautiful thing I ever saw: for if the others are very beautiful, this is more so: it has many very green and very large trees: and the land is higher than that of the other islands which have been found. And on it there are some hillocks which cannot he called mountains, but which beautify the rest, and there appear to be many waters yonder in the centre of the island. From this side to the north-east there is a large point and there are many large thick groves. I wished to go and anchor at this point in order to land and see such a beautiful place: hut the water was shallow and I could not anchor except quite a way from land and the wind was very favourable for me to come to this cape, where I now anchored, and which I named Cabo Hermoso {Cape Beautiful} for such it is: and so I did not anchor at that point and also because I saw this cape from yonder, so green and so beautiful like all the other things and lands of these islands, so that I do not know where to go first: neither do my eyes weary of seeing such beautiful verdure so different from ours, and also I believe that there are here many herbs and trees, which are of great value in Spain for dyeing, for medicines and for spices, but I do not know them, which troubles me greatly. And on reaching this cape there came such a soft, sweet smell of flowers or trees from the land, that it was the sweetest thing in the world. In the morning before leaving here I will go on land to see what is here at this cape. There is no village except farther inland where these men I am bringing with me, say the King is and that he wears a great deal of gold. And in the morning I wish to go far enough to find the village and see or talk with the King, for according to the signs made by these Indians, he rules all these neighbouring islands and is clothed and wears a great deal of gold upon his person; although I do not put much faith in their sayings, as much because I do not understand them well, as because of knowing them to he so poor in gold that whatever small quantity this King wears it appears a great deal to them. This cape which I call Cabo Fermoso, I believe is an island apart from Saometo, and even that there is another small one midway between. I do not care to see so much thus in detail, because I could not do that in 50 years, and because I wish to go and discover the most that I can, in order to return to your Highnesses, God willing, in April. It is true that if I find where there is a quantity of gold or spices, it will detain me until I obtain as much as possible of them: and on this account I am not doing other than to go in search of them."


"To-day at sunrise, I weighed anchors from where I was anchored with the ship at this island of Saometo at the south-west cape which I named the Cabo de la laguna, as I had named the island Isabella, to navigate to the north-east and to the east from the south-eastern and southern part {of the island}, where, as I heard from these men I have with me, there was a village and also the King of the island: and I found all the water so shallow that I could not enter or sail to it, and I saw that by following the south-west route it would be a very large detour, and for this reason I determined to return by the north-north-east on the western side, the way I had come, and sail around this island in order to {lacuna: perhaps reconocerla--reconnoitre}. The wind was so light that I never could coast along the land except in the night: and as it is dangerous to anchor among these islands except in the daytime, when the eves can see where the anchor is thrown, because the bottom is all unequal, one spot suitable and another not,--I began to stand off and on all this Sunday night. The caravels anchored because they reached land early, and they thought that with the signals which they were accustomed to make, I would go and anchor, but I did not wish to do so."


"At 10 o'clock I arrived here at this point of the islet and anchored as did also the caravels: and after having eaten, I landed. There was no other village here except one house, in which I did not find any one, as I believe they had fled through fear because all their domestic utensils were in the house. I did not allow my people to touch anything but I went with them and with these captains and people to see the island. If the other islands already seen are very beautiful, green and fertile, this one is much more so and has very large green groves. There are some large lakes here and upon them and around them, there are wonderful groves. They are very green here as well as in all the island and the grass is the same as it is in April in Andalusia. And the singing of the little birds is such that it appears a man would wish never to leave here, and the flocks of parrots obscure the sun. And there are large and small birds of so many kinds and so different from ours, that it is wonderful. And then there are a thousand kinds of trees, each with its own fruit and they are all wonderfully odoriferous. I am the most troubled man in the world that I do not know them, because I am very certain that they are all valuable things and I am bringing specimens of them and also of the herbs. In walking thus around one of these lakes I saw a serpent which we killed and I am bringing the skin to your Highnesses. When it saw us, it threw itself into the lake and we followed it there, as the water was not very deep, until we killed it with spears. It is seven palms in length. I believe there are many serpents like this one here in this lake. Here I recognised some aloes and to-morrow I have determined to have ten quintals brought to the ship, because they tell me it is very valuable. Also in searching for good water, we went to a village near here, a half league from where I am anchored: and the people of this village, as they saw us, all took to flight and left their houses, and hid their clothing ropas and what they possessed in the mountain. I did not allow anything to be taken, not the value of a pin. Afterward some of the men approached us and one came quite up to us. I gave him some hawk's bells and some little glass beads and he was very much pleased and very joyful. And that the friendship might increase and that I might require something of them, I asked him for water. And after I went on board the ship, they then came to the shore with their gourds full, and were very much pleased to give it to us. And I ordered that another string of little glass beads should be given them, and they said that they would come here to-morrow. I wished to fill all the ship's butts with water here; therefore, if the weather permits, I will then start and sail around this island, until I have speech with the King and see if I can obtain from him the gold which I hear he wears. And afterward I will leave for another very large island which I believe must be Cipango, according to the indications which those Indians I am taking with me, give me, and which they call Colba. They say that at this island there are many large ships and many skilled seamen. Near this island there is another which they call Bosio, which they say is also very large. And I will see the other islands which lie between in passing, and according to whether I find a quantity of gold or spices, I will determine what must be done. But still, I have determined to go to the mainland to the city of Guisay and give your Highnesses' letters to the Great Khan, and beg for a reply and come back with it."


All this night and to-day I remained here, waiting to see if the King of this country or other persons would bring gold or anything else of substance: and many of these people came, similar to the other people of the other islands, naked like them and painted, some white, some reddish, some blackish, and in many different fashions. They brought spears and some balls of cotton to trade, which they exchanged here with some sailors for pieces of glass, broken cups, and for pieces of earthen porringers. Some of them wore pieces of gold fastened to their noses, which they willingly gave for a hawk's bell suitable for the foot of a sparrow-hawk, and for small glass beads; but it is so small a quantity of gold, that it is nothing. It is true that however little was given them for the gold, they yet considered our coming very wonderful and believed that we had come from heaven. We took water for the ships from a lake here which is near the Point of the Island {cabo del isleo} as I shall name it: and in the said lake Martin Alonso Pinzon, captain of the Pinta, killed another serpent like the one of yesterday which was seven palms in length, and here I had all the aloes taken which were found."


"I would like to leave here to-day for the island of Cuba which I believe must be Cipango {Japan} according to the description which these people give of its size and richness, and I will not remain here longer, neither {lacuna: perhaps--will I sail} around this island to go to the village, as I had determined, in order to talk with this King or Lord. For I must not delay much since I see that there is no gold-mine and it needs many kinds of winds to sail around this island, and it does not blow thus as men would like. And as I must go where great trade may be had, I say that it is not reasonable to delay, but to pursue my journey and discover much land until I encounter a very profitable country, although my understanding is that this one is very well provided with spices: but I do not know them, which causes me the greatest trouble in the world, as I see a thousand species of trees, each of which has its kind of fruit and they are as green now as they are in Spain in the months of May and June: and there are a thousand kinds of herbs the same as of flowers, and of them all I recognised only these aloes, of which I to-day also ordered a large quantity brought to the ship to carry it to your Highnesses. And I have not made nor am I making sail for Cuba, because there is no wind, but a dead calm, and it rains hard: and it rained a great deal yesterday without making it cool, but rather it is warm during tile day and the nights are temperate like those in Spain in the month of May in Andalusia."


"This night at midnight I weighed the anchors from the Cabo del Isleo on the island of Isabella, which is on the northern part and is where I bad stopped, in order to go to the island of Cuba which I heard from these people was very large and would yield much trade, and that there was upon it gold and spices and large vessels and merchants: and they showed me that a course west-south-west would lead to it and I think it is so. Because I believe that if what these Indians from these islands and those I am taking on the ships have indicated to me by signs (as I do not understand the language) is true, it is the island of Cipango in regard to which they are telling wonderful things: and according to the spheres which I saw and the drawings of mappemondes it is in this region: Thus I sailed to the west-south-west until day, and at day-break the wind calmed and it rained, and it was so almost all the night. And I remained in this condition with a slight wind until past mid-day and then it commenced to blow again very pleasingly, and I spread all my sails on the ship, the main-sail, and two bonnets, the fore-sail, the sprit-sail, the mizzen-sail the main-top-sail and the small sail in the stern. So I went on my course until nightfall and then Cabo Verde on the island of Fernandina which the southern point of the western part of the island was north-west of me, and it was at a distance from me of seven leagues. And as it was still blowing strongly and I did not know how far it might be to the said island of Cuba, and in order not to go in search of it at night because the water around all these islands is very deep so that there is no anchorage save at a distance of two lombard shots, and the bottom is all either rocky or sandy so that one cannot anchor safely without seeing,--for these reasons I decided to lower all the sails except the fore-sail and navigate with that: and after a short time the wind increased very much and I went quite a distance without being sure of my course, and it was very dark and cloudy and it rained. I ordered the fore-sail lowered and we did not go two leagues this night, etc."


After sunrise he sailed to the west-south-west until 9 o'clock and they went about five leagues. Afterwards he changed the course to the west. They went eight miles an hour until one hour after mid-day and from then until three o'clock, and they went about 44 miles. Then they saw land and there were seven or eight islands all dong from north to south. They were five leagues distant from them, etc.


He was south of the said islands. It was all shallow water for five or six leagues and he anchored there. The Indians he was carrying with him said that it was a day and a half's journey from these islands to Cuba with their canoes, which are small wooden vessels which do not carry sail. These are the canoes. He started from there for Cuba, because from the descriptions which the Indians gave him of the size of the island and of the gold and pearls on it, he thought that it was the one,--that is to say Cipango.


After sunrise he weighed the anchors from those islands which he called Las Islas de Arena, on account of the shallow water which extends six leagues to the south of them. He went eight miles an hour to the south-south-west until one o'clock and they might have gone 40 miles, and until night they went about 28 miles on the same course, and before night they saw land. They remained quiet that night, making observations during which time it rained very hard. Saturday they went until sunset 17 leagues to the south-south-west.


He went from there in search of the island of Cuba to the south-south-west, to the nearest part of the island, and entered a very beautiful river which was very free from dangerous shoals and other inconveniences. And the water all along the coast there was very deep and very clear as far as the shore. The mouth of the river was 12 fathoms deep and it is quite wide enough to beat about. He anchored inside, he says, at a distance of a lombard shot. The Admiral says that he never saw anything so beautiful, the country around the river being full of trees, beautiful and green and different from ours, with flowers and each with its own kind of fruit. There were many large and small birds which sang very sweetly, and there was a great quantity of palms differing from those in Guinea and from ours. They were of medium height without any bark at the foot and the leaves are very large, with which the Indians cover the houses. The country is very level. The Admiral jumped into the boat and went to land, and approached two houses which he believed to be those of fishermen who fled in fear. In one of the houses they found a dog which never barked and in both houses they found nets made of palm-threads and cords and fish-hooks of horn and harpoons of bone and other fishing materials and many fires (huegos) within and he believed that many persons lived together in each house. He ordered that not one thing should he touched, and thus it was done. The grass was as tall as in Andalusia in the months of April and May. He found much purslain and wild amaranth. He returned to the boat and went up the river a good distance and he says it was such a great pleasure to see that verdure and those groves and the birds that he could not leave them to return. He says that this island is the most beautiful one that eyes have seen, full of very good harbours and deep rivers and it appeared that the sea never rose because the grass on the beach reached almost to the water, which does not usually happen when the sea is rough. Until then he had never found in all those islands that the sea was rough. The island, he says, is filled with very beautiful mountains, although they are not very long but high and all the other land is high like Sicily. It is full of many waters, according to what he was able to understand from the Indians he was taking with him, whom he took in the island of Guanahani, who told him by signs that there are ten large rivers and that with their canoes they cannot go around it in twenty days. When he was going to land with the ships, two rafts or canoes came out and as they saw that the sailors entered the boat and were rowing in order to go and find out the depth of the river so as to know where they could anchor, the canoes fled. The Indians said that in that island there were mines of gold and pearls, and the Admiral saw a good place for them and for mussels which is an indication of them, and the Admiral understood that large ships belonging to the Great Khan came there, and that from there to the mainland it was a ten days' journey. The Admiral named that river and harbour San Salvador.


He weighed the anchors from that harbour and navigated to the west he says, in order to go to the city where it appeared to him from what the Indians said that the King dwelt. One point of the island projected to the north-west six leagues from there, another point projected to the east ten leagues: having gone another league he saw a river not with as wide an entrance as the other which he named the Rio de la Luna. He sailed until the hour of vespers. He saw another river very much larger than the others, and the Indians told him so by signs, and near this river he saw good villages of houses. He named the river the Rio de Mares. He sent the boats to a village to have speech with the Indians, and in one of the boats he sent an Indian from among those he was taking with him, because the Indians already understood them somewhat and showed that they were pleased with the Christians. All the men and women and children fled from these people abandoning the houses with all they had, and the Admiral ordered that nothing would be touched. He says that the houses were more beautiful than those he had seen and he believed that the nearer they approached the mainland the better they were. They were constructed like pavilions, very large, and appeared like royal tents without uniformity of streets, but one here and another there, and within they were very well swept and dean, and their furnishings were arranged in good order. All are built of very beautiful palm branches. They found many statues of women's forms and many heads like masks, very well made. it is not known whether they have them because of their beauty or whether they adore them. There were dogs which never barked. There were small wild birds tamed in their houses. There were wonderful outfits of nets and hooks and fishing implements. They did not touch one thing among them. The Admiral believed that all the Indians on the coast must be fishermen who carry the fish inland, because that island is very large and so beautiful that he could not say too much good of it. He says that he found trees and fruits of a very wonderful taste. And he says that there must be cows and other herds of cattle on this island, because he saw skulls which appeared to him to be skulls of cows. There were large and small birds and the crickets sang all the night, which pleased every one. The breezes were soft and pleasant during all the night, neither cold nor warm. But in regard to the other islands he says that it is very warm upon them and here it is not, but temperate as in May. He attributes the heat of the other islands to their being very level, and to the fact that the wind which blows there is from the south and on that account very warm. The water in those rivers was salt at the mouth. They did not know the sources whence the Indians drank although they had fresh water in their houses. The ships were able to turn around in the river to enter and to go out and they have very good signs or marks. They are seven or eight fathoms deep at the mouth and five within. He says that it appears to him that all that sea must always be as calm as the river of Seville, and the water suitable for the growth of pearls. He found large snails without taste, not like those in Spain. He described the disposition of the river and the harbour which he says above that he named San Salvador, by saying that its mountains are beautiful and high, like the Rock of the Lovers (pena de lo senamorados) and one of them has at the summit another little mount like a beautiful mosque. This river and harbour in which he was at this time, has to the south-east two quite round mountains and to the west-north-west a beautiful level cape which projects outward.


He went out of the Rio de Mares to the north-west and after having gone fifteen leagues he saw a cape covered with palms and named it Cabo de Palmas. The Indians who were in the caravel Pinta said that behind that cape there was a river and from the river to Greta it was four days' journey and the captain of the Pinta said that he understood that this Cuba was a city, and that that country was the mainland, very large, which extends very far to the north; and that the King of that country was at war with the Great Khan, whom they called Cami, and his country or city they called Fava and many other names. The Admiral determined to approach that river and send a present to the King of the Country and send him the letter from the Sovereigns, and for this purpose he had a sailor who had been in Guinea in like manner and certain Indians from Guanahani who wished to go with him, so that afterwards they might return to their country. In the Admiral's opinion he was 42 degrees distant from the equinoctial line toward the north, but the text from which this is copied is defaced; and he says that he must strive to go to the Great Khan as he thought he was in that vicinity or at the city of Cathay which is the city of the Great Khan. He says that this city is very great, according to what was said to him before he left Spain. He says all this country is low and beautiful and the sea is deep.


All Tuesday night he went beating about and saw a river which he could not enter as the mouth was shallow: and the Indians thought that the ships could enter as their canoes entered, and sailing onward he found a cape which projected very far out and was surrounded by shoals and he saw an inlet or bay where small ship could remain, and he could not reach it, because the wind had shifted entirely to the north and all the coast extended to the north-north-west and south-east and another cape which he saw ahead of him projected farther out. For this reason and because the sky indicated a strong wind he had to return to the Rio de Mares.


At sunrise the Admiral sent the boats to land to the houses which were there and they found that all the people had fled: and after some time a man appeared and the Admiral ordered that they should be left to become re-assured and the boats returned, and after having eaten he again sent to land one of the Indians he was carrying, who from a distance called to them saying that they must not be afraid because the Spaniards were good people and did no harm to any one; neither were they from the Great Khan, rather had they given of their possessions in many islands where they had been. And the Indian started to swim and went to land, and two of the Indians there took him by the arms and conducted him to a house where they questioned him. And as they were sure that no harm would be done them, they were re-assured and then there came to the ships more than sixteen rafts or canoes with spun cotton and other little things of theirs, of which the Admiral ordered that nothing should be taken that they might know that the Admiral was seeking nothing except gold which they call nucay: and thus during dl the day they went and came from land to the ships, and the Christians went to land in great security. The Admiral did not see any of them have gold but the Admiral says he saw one of them have a piece of wrought silver fastened to his nose, which be took as an indication that there was silver in the country. They said by signs that before three days there would come many merchants from the country inland to buy the things which the Christians brought there, and they would give news from the King of the country, who, according to what they could understand by the signs they made was four days journey distant from there, because they had sent many people through all the country, to tell them about the Admiral. These people, says the Admiral, are of the same quality and have the same customs as the others which have been found, without any sect that I know, as until the present I have not seen these I am bringing with me make any prayer but instead they say the Salve and the Ave Maria with the hands raised to heaven as they are shown, and they make the sign of the cross. All the language also is one and they are all friends and I believe that all these islands are friendly, and that they are at war with the Great Khan, whom they call Cavila and the province Bafan, and thus they also go naked like the others The Admiral says this. He says that the river is very deep and the ships can approach their sides to the land, in the mouth. The water is not fresh until within a league of the mouth and there it is very fresh. And it is certain says the Admiral that this is the mainland and that I am, he says, before Zayto and Guinsay, 100 leagues a little more or a little less, distant from both, and it is well shown by the sea which comes in a different manner than it has come up to the present, and yesterday as he was going to the north-west he found that it was becoming cold.


The Admiral decided to send two Spaniards, the one named Rodrigo de Jerez who lived in Ayamonte and the other one Luis de Torres, who had lived with the Adelantado of Murcia, and had been a Jew and who he says knew how to speak Hebrew and Chaldean and even some Arabic: and with these men he sent two Indians, one of those he was taking with him from Guanahani and the other from those houses situated on the River. He gave them strings of beads to buy something to eat if it should fail them and six days time in which to return. He gave them specimens of spices to see if they came across any of them. He gave them instructions as to how they must ask for the King of that country and as to what they were to say on the part of the Sovereigns of Castile, how they sent the Admiral that he might give to the King on their part their letters and a present, and in order to learn of his state and gain friendship with him that he might favour them in whatever they might need, etc.: and that they might learn of certain provinces and harbours and rivers of which the Admiral had information and how far distant they were from there, etc.

This night the Admiral took the altitude here with a quadrant and he found that he was 42 degrees distant from the equinoctial line and he says that by his computation he found that he had gone from the island of Hierro 1142 leagues, and he still affirms that that country is the mainland.


In the morning the Admiral entered the boat and as the river forms a great lake at the mouth which makes a very remarkable harbour very deep and free from rocks, a very good beach to run the ships aground in order to clean the hulls, and there is a great deal of wood,--he went up the river until he reached fresh water, which might be about two leagues and ascended a slight elevation to learn something of the country, and he could not see anything because of the large groves which were very fresh and odorous, on account of which he says he has no doubt that there are aromatic herbs. He says that everything he saw was so beautiful that the eyes could not weary of seeing such beauty nor could one weary of the songs of the birds, both large and small. That day many rafts or canoes came to the ships to barter things made of spun cotton and the nets in which they slept, which are hammocks.


Then at dawn the Admiral entered the boat and went to land to hunt some birds which he had seen the day before. After his return, Martin Alonzo Pinzon came to him with two pieces of cinnamon and said that a Portuguese he had on his ship had seen an Indian who was carrying two very large handfuls of it, but that he had not dared to trade with him for it on account of the prohibition of the Admiral that no one should do any trading. He said further that the Indian had some bright reddish things like nuts. The Boatswain of the Pinta said that he had found trees of cinnamon. The Admiral then went there and found that it was not cinnamon. The Admiral showed cinnamon and pepper to some Indians in that place--it appears that it was from that which they were carrying from Castile as a specimen--and he says that they recognised it and they said by signs that near there, there was a great deal of it toward the south-east. He showed them gold and pearls and certain old men replied that in a place they called Bohio there was an infinite quantity of gold, and that they wore it at the neck and in the ears and on the arms and on the legs, and also pearls. He understood further that they said there were large ships and merchandise and all this was to the south-east. He understood also that a long distance from there, there were men with one eye and others with dogs' snouts who ate men and that on taking a man they beheaded him and drank his blood and cut off his genital parts. The Admiral determined to return to the ship and await the two men he had sent in order to decide to start and search for those lands, unless, these men brought some good news of what he desired. The Admiral says further--"These people are very meek and very fearful, naked as I have said, without arms and without government. These lands are very fertile. They are full of 'mames' which are like carrots and taste like chestnuts and they have 'faxones' and beans very different from ours, and a great deal of cotton, which they do not sow and which grows in the mountains, large trees of it: and I believe they have it ready to gather all the time because I saw the pods opened and others which were opening and flowers all on one tree and a thousand other kinds of fruits of which it is not possible for me to write and it must all be a profitable thing." The Admiral says all this.


At dawn he ordered the small ship beached in order to clean the hull and the other ships also, but not all together: but that two should remain all the time in the place where they were for security, although he says that those people were very safe and they could have beached all the ships together without fear. Being in this condition, the Boatswain of the Niña came to beg a reward from the Admiral because he had found mastic, but he did not bring a specimen because he had lost it. The Admiral promised him the reward and sent Rodrigo Sanchez and Master Diego to the trees, and they brought a little of it which he kept to carry to the Sovereigns and also some of the tree and he says that he knew that it was mastic. Although it must be gathered at the right time: and that there was enough in that vicinity to procure 1000 quintals each year. He says that he found near there a great deal of that wood which is called aloe. He says further that the Puerto de Mares is one of the best harbours in the world and has the best climate and the quietest people and as it has a point formed by a high rocky hillock a fortress can be made, so that if rich and great things should come out of this country, the merchants would be secure there from any other nations whatever. And he says,--"May Our Lord, in whose hands are all the victories, dispose all that which is for His service." He says that an Indian said by signs that the mastic was good for pains in the stomach.


Yesterday in the night, says the Admiral, the two men whom he had sent inland to see the country came back and told him how they bad gone twelve leagues as far as a village of fifty houses, where he says there were a thousand inhabitants, as a great many live in one house. These houses are like very large pavilions. The Spaniards said that the Indians received them with great solemnity according to their custom and all the men as well as the women came to see them and lodged them in the best houses. The Indians touched them and kissed their hands and feet wondering, and believing that they came from heaven, and thus they gave them to understand. They gave them to eat from what they had. They said that on arriving, the most honourable persons of the village conducted them by the arms to the principal house and gave them two chairs in which they sat down and they all seated themselves on the floor around them. The Indian who went with them told them how the Christians lived and how they were good people. Afterwards the men went out and the women entered and seated themselves in the same manner around them, kissing their hands and feet, trying them to see if they were of flesh and of bone like themselves. They begged them to remain there with them at least five days. They showed the Indians the cinnamon and pepper and other spices which the Admiral had given them and these told them by signs that there was a great deal of it near there to the south-east: but that they did not know if they had it in that place. Having seen that there were no rich cities they returned and it they had desired to make a place for those who wished to come with them, that more than 500 men and women would have come with them, because they thought they were returning to heaven. There came with them however one of the principal men of the village and his son and one of his men. The Admiral talked with them, paid them great honour and he this Indian indicated to him many lands and islands there were in those parts and he thought to bring them to the Sovereigns: and he says he did not know what the Indian desired of him, hut it appears that because of fear and in the darkness of night he desired to land, and the Admiral says that as he had the ship dry on land, and not wishing to irritate him, he let him go, saying that at dawn be would return, but he never returned. The two Christians found on the way many people who were crossing to their villages, men and women with a half burned wood in their hands and herbs to smoke, which they are in the habit of doing. They did not find on the way a village of more than five houses, and all gave them the same welcome. They saw many kinds of trees and grasses and sweetsmelling flowers. They saw many kinds of birds different from those in Spain, excellent partridge and nightingales, which sang, and geese, and of these there is a very great number there. They saw no four-footed beasts except dogs which did not bark. The land is very fertile and very well cultivated with those "mames" and "fexoes" and beans very different from ours, that same panic-grass and a great quantity of cotton gathered and spun and worked, and they said that in one house alone they had seen more than five hundred arrobas and that there could be had there each year, four thousand quintals. The Admiral says that it appeared to him they did not sow it and that it bears fruit all the year: it is very fine, and has a very large pod. All that these people had, he says, they gave for a very miserable price and that they gave one great basket of cotton for the end of a leather strap or any other thing that was given them. They are a people, says the Admiral, very free from evil or from war. All the men and women are naked as their mothers gave them birth. It is true that the women wear a cotton thing only large enough to cover their genital parts and no more and they are of very good presence, neither very black but less so than the inhabitants of the Canaries. "I have to say Most Serene Princes (says the Admiral) that by means of devout religious persons knowing their language well, all would soon become Christians: and thus I hope in our Lord that your Highnesses will appoint such persons with great diligence in order to turn to the Church such great peoples, and that they will convert them, even as they have destroyed those who would not confess the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit: and after their days as we are all mortal, they will leave their realms in a very tranquil condition and freed from heresy and wickedness, and will be well received before the Eternal Creator, Whom may it please to give them a long life and a great increase of larger realms and dominions, and the will and disposition to spread the holy Christian religion, as they have done up to the present time, Amen.--To-day I will launch the ship and make haste to start Thursday in the name of God to go to the south-east and seek gold and spices and discover land." These are the words of the Admiral, who thought to start on Thursday. But as the wind was contrary, he could not start until Nov. 12.


He started from the harbour and river of Alares at the passing of the quarter of dawn to go to an island which the Indians he was taking positively affirmed was called Babeque, where, as they said by signs, the people on it gather gold with candles at night in the sand and afterwards with a hammer he says they make bars of it, and in order to go to this island it was necessary to turn the prow to the east, quarter south-east. After having gone eight leagues forward along the coast he found a river and then having gone another four, he found another river which appeared very rich and larger than any of the others he had found. He did not wish to stop or enter any of them on two accounts, the principal one that the weather and wind were good to go in search of the said island of Babeque, the other because if there should be any populous or famous city upon it, it would appear near the sea, and in order to go up the river small vessels were necessary, which those they had were not, and thus he would also lose much time, and the similar rivers are a thing to be discovered by one's self. All that coast was principally populated near the river, to which he gave the name of El Rio del Sol. He said that Sunday before, November 11, it had appeared to him that it would be well to take some persons from those dwelling by that river in order to take them to the Sovereigns that they might learn our language so as to know what there is in the country, and that in returning they may speak the language of the Christians and take our customs and the things of the Faith, "Because I see and know (says the Admiral) that this people have no sect whatever nor are they idolaters, but very meek and without knowing evil, or killing others or capturing them and without arms, and so timorous that a hundred of them flee from one of our people, although they may jest with them: and they are credulous and they know that there is a God in heaven, and they firmly believe that we have come from heaven: and they learn very quickly whatever prayer we tell them to say and they make the sign of the cross So that your Highnesses must resolve to make them Christians, as I believe that if they commence, in a short time a multitude of peoples will have been converted to our Holy Faith acquiring great domains and riches and all their villages for Spain: because without doubt there is a very great quantity of gold in this land, as these Indians I am bringing say, not without cause, that there are places in these islands where they dig the gold and wear it at the neck and in the ears and on the arms and on the legs and there are very heavy bracelets and also there are precious stones and pearls and an infinite quantity of spices. And in this river of Alures from whence I started last night, without doubt there is a very great quantity of mastic, and there may be more if it is desired that there should be more, because in planting the trees they grow easily and there are a great quantity and very large ones, and the leaf is like the mastic-tree and the fruit, except that the trees as well as the leaves are larger, as Pliny says, and as I have seen on the island of Scio in the Archipelago. And I ordered many of these trees tapped to see if resin would flow out in order to bring some, and as it has rained all the time I have been in the said river I have not been able to get any of it, except a very small quantity which I am bringing to your Highnesses, and also it may be that it is not the time to tap them; as for this purpose I believe that the end of the winter when the trees are about to bloom is suitable: and here they already have the fruit almost ripe it the present time. And also there will be a great quantity of cotton here, and I believe that it would he sold very well here without taking it to Spain, but to the great cities of the Great Khan which will without doubt be discovered, and to many other cities belonging to other Lords which will come to serve your Highnesses, and where other things from Spain and the lands of the east will be taken, since these are to the west of us. And here there is also an infinite quantity of aloes, although it is not a thing which will produce great riches but from the mastic much is to be expected, because there is none except in the said island of Scio, and I believe that they derive from it fifty thousand ducats, if I do not remember wrongly. And there is here in the mouth of the river the best harbour that I have seen until the present time, clear and wide and deep and a good situation and strong place to construct a village; and any ships whatever can approach their sides to the banks and the land is very temperate and high and the waters are very good. Yesterday there came to the side of the ship a canoe with six youths upon it and five of them entered the ship: these I ordered kept and I am bringing them with me. And afterwards I sent to a house which is west of the river and they brought seven women, small and large, and three children. I did this that the men might conduct themselves better in Spain by having women from their country than they would without them: as it had already happened many other times in taking the men from Guinea that they might learn the language in Portugal--that after they returned and it was thought that they might be made use of in their country on account of the good company they had had and the presents which had been given them, that they never appeared after arriving there. Others did not act in this manner. So that having their wives they will be willing to undertake what is desired of them, and also these women will teach our people their language, which is all one in all these islands of India and all understand each other and all go with their canoes, which is not the case in Guinea where there are a thousand kinds of languages so that one does not understand the other. This night there came to the side of the vessel the husband of one of these women and the father of the three children who were a male and two females and asked that I might let him come with them and it pleased me greatly, and they are now all consoled so they must all be relatives, and he is a man of already forty-five years." All these are the exact words of the Admiral. He also says above that it was somewhat cold and on this account it would not be good judgment to navigate to the north in winter in order to make discoveries. He sailed this Monday until sunset eighteen leagues to the east quarter south-east as far as a cape, which he named the Cabo de Cuba.


All this night he was "a la corda," as the sailors say, which is to beat about and not make any headway, in order to see a gap in the mountains, which is an opening as between one mountain range and another, which he began to see at sunset, where two very large mountains appeared, and it seemed that the country of Cuba was divided from that of Bohio, and the Indians he was taking with him said so by signs. Daylight having arrived, he made sail for land, and passed a point which at night appeared about two leagues distant, and entered a large gulf, five leagues to the south-south-west: and there remained another five leagues to arrive at the cape, where between two large mountains there was a cut into which he could not determine whether the sea had an entrance or not. And as he desired to go to the island which they called Babeque where he bad information, according to what he understood, that there was a great deal of gold, which island projected to the east of him and as he saw no large villages where he could place himself in shelter from the wind which increased more than ever up to that time, he decided to make for the sea, and go to the east with the wind, which was north, and he went eight miles each hour: and from ten o'clock in the day when he took that course, until sunset he went fifty-six miles from the Cabo de Cuba to the east, which are fourteen leagues. And of the other country of Bohio which remained to the leeward, commencing from the head of the aforesaid gulf he discovered, in his opinion, eighty miles, which are twenty leagues, and dl that coast extends east-south-east and west-north-west.


All the night of yesterday he went cautiously and beating about because he said that it was not reasonable to navigate among those islands at night until he had discovered them as the Indians he was carrying told him yesterday (Tuesday) that it was about three days' journey from the river of Mares to the island of Babeque, which must he understood as days' journeys for their canoes, which can go seven leagues, and the wind also became light: and having to go to the east he could not (steer in that direction), except to the quarter of the south-east, and on account of other inconveniences which he refers to he had to stop there until morning. At sunrise he determined to go in search of a harbour, because the wind had changed from the north to the north-east, and if he did not find a harbour it would be necessary for him to turn backward to the harbours he had left on the island of Cuba. He reached land, having gone that night twenty-four miles to the east quarter south-east; he went to the south lacuna miles to land, where he saw many inlets and many small islands and harbours, and as the wind was high and the sea greatly changed he did not dare to undertake to enter, but rather he ran along the coast to the north-west, quarter west, searching for a harbour, and he saw that there were many but not very clear. After having gone in this manner sixty-four miles, he found a very deep inlet, a quarter of a mile wide, and a good harbour and river, where he entered and turned his prow to the south-south-west, and afterward to the south until he reached south-east, and all very wide and deep. Here he saw so many islands that he could not count them all, of good size, and very high lands covered with different trees of a thousand kinds and an infinite number of palms. He marvelled greatly to see so many high islands, and he says to the Sovereigns in regard to the mountains which he has seen since the day before yesterday along these coasts and on these islands, that it appears to him there are no higher ones in the world nor any as beautiful and clear, without fog or snow, and at the base the sea is of very great depth: and he says he believes that these islands are those innumerable ones which in the maps of the world are placed at the end of the east: and he said that he believed there were very great riches and precious stones and spices upon them, and that they extend very far to the south and spread out in all directions. He named this place La Mar de Nuestra Senora, and the harbour which is near the entrance to the said islands he named Puerto del Principe, into which he did not enter more than to see it from outside, until another excursion which he made there the coming week, which will appear there. He says so many and such things of the fertility and beauty and height of these islands which he found in this harbour, that he tells the Sovereigns not to wonder that he praises them so much, because he assures them that he does not believe he has told the hundredth part. Some of them appeared to reach heaven and were like points of diamonds: others of great height which have a table on top, and at their base the sea is of very great depth so that a very large carack could approach them: and they are all covered with forests and are without rocks.


He decided to go among these islands with the boats from the ships and he says wonders in regard to them, and that he found mastic and a great quantity of aloes and some of them were covered with the roots from which the Indians make their bread, and he found that a fire had been kindled in some places. He saw no fresh water but there were some people and they fled. Everywhere he went he found a depth of fifteen and sixteen fathoms, and all "basa" which means that the bottom underneath is sand and not rock, which the sailors greatly desire, because the rocks cut the cables of the ships' anchors.


As in all the places, islands and lands where he entered he always left a cross planted, he entered the boat and went to the mouth of those harbours and on a point of the land he found two very large beams, one larger than the other, and the one upon the other made a cross, which he says a carpenter could not have made in better proportion: and having adored that cross, he ordered a very large, high cross made of the same timbers. He found canes along that beach and he says he did not know where they came from but he believed that some river brought them and cast them on the beach, and he was reasonable in thinking so. He went to a creek within the entrance of the harbour to the south-east (a creek is a narrow inlet where the water from the sea enters the land): there the land formed a promontory of stone and rock like a cape, and at the base the sea was very deep, so that the largest carack in the world could lie against the land, and there was a place or corner where six ships could remain without anchors as in a hall. It appeared to him that a fortress could be built there at small cost, if any notable commerce should result in that sea from those islands at any time. On returning to the ship he found the Indians he had with him fishing for very large snails which are found in those seas, and he made the people enter there and search for nacaras which are the oysters where pearls are formed, and they found many but no pearls and he attributed it to the fact that it could not have been the time for them, which he believed was in May and June. The sailors found an animal which appeared to be a "taso" or "taxo." They fished also with nets and found a fish among many others, which appeared like a genuine hog, not like a "tunny" which he says was all shell, very hard, and had nothing soft except the tail and the eyes and an opening underneath to expel its superfluities. He ordered it salted that he might take it for the Sovereigns to see.


He entered the boat in the morning and went to see the islands which he had not seen, in the direction of the south-west: he saw many others very fertile and very delightful and between them the sea was very deep. Some of them were divided by streams of fresh water, and he believed that that water and those streams came from springs which proceeded from the tops of the mountain ranges on the islands. Going onward from here he found a very beautiful river of fresh water and it flowed very cold through the dry part of the island: there was a very pretty meadow and many palms, much taller than those he had seen. He found large nuts like those of India, I believe he says, and large rats, also like those of India, and very large craw-fish. He saw many birds and smelled a powerful odour of musk {almazique}, and believed that there must be some there. To-day, of the six youths whom he took in the river of Mares and whom he ordered should go on the caravel Niña, the two oldest ones fled.


He proceeded in the boats again with many people from the ships and went to place the great cross which he had ordered made of the said two timbers at the mouth of the entrance of the said Puerto del Principe, in a sightly place and free from trees: It was very high and commanded a very beautiful view. He says that the sea rises and falls there much more than in any other harbour which has been seen in that country, and that it is not very wonderful by reason of the many islands, and that the tide is the reverse of ours, because there when the moon is to the south-west quarter south, it is low tide in that harbour. He did not start from there as it was Sunday.


He started in a calm before sunrise, and after mid-day it blew some to the east and he navigated to the north-north-east; at sunset the Puerto del Principe was to the south-south-west, and was about seven leagues from him. He saw the island of Babeque exactly to the east, about sixty miles distant. He sailed slowly all this night to the north-east; he went about sixty miles and until ten o'clock in the day, Tuesday, another twelve, which are in all eighteen leagues, and in the direction of the north-east quarter north.


Babeque or the islands of Babeque were to the east-south-east, from which direction the wind blew, which was contrary. And seeing that it did not alter and the sea was changing, he decided to make a short excursion to the Puerto del Principe, from whence he had come, which was at a distance of twenty-five leagues. He did not wish to go to the small island which he called Isabella which was at a distance of twelve leagues where he might have gone to anchor that day, for two reasons: one reason, because he perceived two islands to the south which he wished to see, the other that the Indians he was carrying, whom he had taken in Guanahani which he called San Salvador which was eight leagues from Isabella, might not get away from him, of whom he says he has need, in order to bring them to Castile, etc. They had understood, he says, that on finding gold the Admiral would allow them to return to their country. He arrived at the place of the Puerto del Principe: but he could not make it because it was night and because the currents caused him to decline to the north-west. He came back again and turned his prow to the north-east with a strong wind: it calmed and the wind changed at the third quarter of the night, and he turned his prow to the east, quarter north-east: the wind was south-south-east and it changed at dawn entirely to the south, and touched upon the south-east. At sunrise he marked the Puerto del Principe, and it was south-west of him and almost in the quarter of the west, and it was about 48 miles distant from luni, which are twelve leagues.


At sunrise he navigated to the east with the wind south. He made little headway on account of the contrary sea: until the hour of vespers he had gone twenty-four miles, Then the wind changed to the east and he went to the south, quarter south-east and at sunset lie had gone twelve miles. There the Admiral found himself forty-two degrees from the equinoctial line in the direction of the north as in the harbour of Mares: but here he says that he has abandoned the use of the quadrant until he reaches land in order to repair it. So that it appeared to him that he could not be so far distant, and he was right, because it was not possible for these islands to be only in {lacuna} degrees. He was moved to believe, he says, that the quadrant was correct by seeing that the North Star was as high as in Castile, and if this is true he had drawn very near to, and was as high as the coast of Florida: but,--where then, are now these islands which he had under consideration. He was persuaded to believe this because it was very warm: but it is clear that if he was on the coast of Florida that it would not be warm but cold: and it is also manifest that in forty-two degrees in no part of the earth is it believed to be warm without it might be for some cause per accidens, which I do not believe is known up to the present time. On account of this heat which the Admiral says he suffered there, he argues that in these Indies and in the place where he was, there must be a great deal of gold. This day Martin Alonso Pinzon went away with the caravel Pinta without the will and command of the Admiral, through avarice, he says, thinking that an Indian whom the Admiral had ordered placed on the caravel, could show him much gold, and so he went away without waiting and without its being on account of bad weather, but because he wished to do so. And the Admiral says here, "He has done and said many other things to me."


Wednesday in the night he navigated to the south quarter south-east with the wind east, and it was almost a calm: at the third quarter it blew north-north-east. He was yet going toward the south in order to see that country which lay in that direction from him and when the sun rose he found himself as far distant as on the past day because of the contrary currents, and the land was a distance of forty miles from him. This night Martin Alonso followed the course to the east in order to go to the island of Babeque, where the Indians say there is a great deal of gold, and he was going in sight of the Admiral and might have been at a distance of sixteen miles. The Admiral went in sight of land all night and he caused some of the sails to be taken in and burned a torch all night, because it appeared to him that Martin Alonso was returning to him; and the night was very clear and there was a nice little breeze by which to come to him if he wished.


The Admiral navigated toward land all day, always to the south with a light wind, and the current never permitted him to reach land, but rather he was as far from it to-day at sunset as he was in the morning. The wind was east-north-east and favourable to go to the south, but it was light: and beyond this cape there was another land or cape which also extends to the east which the Indians he was carrying called Bohio, and which they said was very large and had upon it people who had an eye in the forehead and others which were called cannibals of whom they showed great fear. And as soon as they saw that they were taking that course, he says that they could not talk, as they said cannibals ate them and they are a people who are very well armed. The Admiral says he well believes there was some truth in it, although since they were armed they must be an intelligent people, and he believed that they had captured some of the other Indians and that because they did not return to their own country, they would say that they ate them. They believed the same in regard to the Christians and the Admiral, when some of them first saw them.


He navigated all that night and at the hour of "tercia" he made land off the level island, in that same place where he had put into harbour the past week when he was going to the island of Babeque. At first he did not dare to land because it appeared to him that the sea broke heavily in that opening in the mountain ranges. And finally he arrived at the Mar de Nuestra Senora where the many islands were, and he entered the harbour near the mouth of the entrance to the islands, and he says that if he had known this harbour before and had not occupied himself in seeing the islands of the Sea of Our Lady {Mar de Nuestra Senora} that it would not have been necessary for him to turn backward although he says that he considers it time well employed in having seen the said islands. So that on arriving at land he sent the boat and tried the harbour and found it a very good bar, six fathoms deep and sometimes twenty, and clear, and all with a sandy bottom: he entered it, turning the prow to the south-west, and afterwards turning to the west, leaving the flat island toward the north, which with another near to it makes a bay in the sea, in which all the ships of Spain could be contained, and could be safe from all the winds without anchorage. And this entrance on the south-eastern part which may be entered by placing the prow to the south-south-west, has an outlet to the west, very deep and very wide: so that whoever might come from the sea on the northern part can pass between the said islands and obtain knowledge of them, as it is the direct passage along this coast. These said islands are at the base of a great mountain which extends lengthwise from east to west, and is exceedingly long and higher and longer than any of all the others which are upon this coast where there is an infinite number, and a rocky reef extends outside along the said mountain like a bar, which reaches as far as the entrance. All this is on the south-eastern part and also on the side of the flat island there is another reef, although this is small, and thus between both there is great width and great depth of water as has been said. Then at the entrance on the south-eastern side, inside in the same harbour, they saw a large and very beautiful river, and with more water than they had seen until that time and the water of which was fresh as far as the sea. It has a bar at the entrance but afterwards inside it is very deep, eight or nine fathoms. The land is all covered with palms and has many groves like ours.


Before sunset he entered the boat and went to see a cape or point of land to the south-east of the small flat island, a matter of a league and a half because it appeared to him that there must be some good river there. Then at the entrance of the cape on the south-eastern part, at a distance of two cross-bow shots, he saw a large stream of very fine water flowing, which descended from a mountain and made a great noise. He went to the river and saw in it some glittering stones with spots on them of the colour of gold, and he remembered that in the river Tejo {Tagus}, at the foot of it near the sea, gold was found and it appeared to him that there certainly must be gold here and he ordered certain of those stones to be gathered to carry them to the Sovereigns. While they were in this place the ship-boys cried out saying that they saw pines. He looked toward the mountain ranges and saw them the pines, so large and wonderful that he could not exaggerate their height and straightness, like spindles, both thick ones and slender ones. From these he knew that ships could be made and a great quantity of timber and masts for the largest vessels of Spain. He saw oak-trees and strawberry-trees and a good river and the materials necessary for saw-mills. The land and the breezes were more temperate than up to the present time, on account of the height and beauty of the mountain ranges. He saw along the beach many other stones of the colour of iron, and others which some said were from silver mines, all of which were brought by the river. There he got a lateen yard and mast for the mizzen of the caravel Niña. He reached the mouth of the river and entered a bay at the foot of that cape on the south-eastern side which was very large and deep and which would contain a hundred ships without any cables or anchors and eyes never saw such another harbour. The chains of mountains were very high, from which many delightful streams descended: and all the ranges were covered with pines and everywhere there were the most diverse and beautiful thickets of trees. There were two or three other rivers which lay behind him. He praises all this highly to the Sovereigns and shows that he experienced inestimable joy and pleasure in seeing it, and especially the pines, because as many ships as desired could be built there by bringing the necessary implements, except wood and fish of which there is an enormous quantity there. And he affirms that he has not praised it a hundredth part as much as it deserves and that it pleased our Lord to continually show him something better and always in what he had discovered up to the present time he had been going from good to better, as well in the trees and forests and grasses and fruits and flowers, as in the people and always in a different manner and in one place the same as in another. The same was true in regard to the harbours and the waters. And finally he says that when he who sees it wonders at it so greatly, how much more wonderful it will seem to those who hear of it, and that no one will be able to believe it until he sees it.


At sunrise he weighed the anchors from the harbour of Santa Catalina where he was, inside the low island, and navigated along the coast in a rather light wind south-west in the direction of the Cabo del Pico, which lay to the south-east. He reached the cape late because the wind calmed, and having arrived he saw to the south-east, quarter east, another cape which might have been sixty miles distant and near there he saw another cape which was about south-east of the ship, quarter south, and it appeared to him that it might have been twenty miles distant, which he named Cabo de Campana and which he could not reach in the day-time because the wind calmed again altogether. He went during that entire day about thirty-two miles which are eight leagues. Within that distance he noted and marked nine very distinct harbours which all the seamen considered wonderful, and five large rivers, because he went near to the land all the time in order to see everything well. All that country consists of very high and beautiful mountains and they are not dry or rocky but are all accessible and there are most beautiful valleys. And the valleys as well as the mountains were covered with tall and verdant trees, so that it was a pleasure to look at them, and it appeared that there were many pines. And also beyond the said Cabo del Pico on the south-eastern side, there were two small islands which were each about two leagues around and in them there were three wonderful harbours and two large rivers. On all this coast he saw no town whatever from the sea. It might have been that there were people and there are signs of them, because whenever they went on land they found signs of habitations and many fires. He thought that the country he now saw in the south-east direction from the Cabo de Campana was the island which the Indians called Bohio: it appears so to him because the said cape is separated from that land. All the people that he has found up to the present time, he says are in great tear of the people of Caniba or Canima, and they say they live on this island of Bohio. This island must be very large, as it appears to him, and he believes that the people on it to and take the other Indians and their lands and houses, as they are very cowardly and do not know about arms. And for this cause it appeared to him that those Indians he was taking with him were not accustomed to settle on the coast of the sea, on account of being near this country. These Indians, he says, after they saw him take the course to this country, could not speak, fearing that they were to be eaten, and he was not able to free them from fear, and they said that the people there had only one eye and the face of a dog and the Admiral believed that they lied: and the Admiral felt that they must belong to the domains of the Great Khan, who captured them.


Yesterday at sunset be arrived near a cape which he called Campana and as the sky was clear and the wind light he did not wish to go to land to anchor although he had five or six wonderful harbours to the leeward, because he was detained more than he desired by the pleasure and delight he felt and experienced in seeing and gazing on the beauty and freshness of those countries wherever he entered, and as he did not wish to be delayed in prosecuting what he was engaged upon. For these reasons he remained that night beating about and standing off and on until day. And as the rapid currents that night had taken him more than five or six leagues farther to the south-east than he was at nightfall where the country of Campana had appeared to him: and beyond that point there appeared a great inlet which seemed to divide one country from the other, and made the appearance of an island in the middle: he decided to turn backward with the wind south-west, and he arrived where the opening had appeared to him, and he found that it was only a large bay and at the head of it on the south-eastern side was a point upon which there was a high and square mountain which appeared like an island. The wind changed to the north and he again took his course to the south-east in order to go along the coast and discover all that there might be there. And he saw then at the foot of that Cabo de Campana a wonderful harbour and a large river and a quarter of a league from there another river and a half league from there another river and another half league from there another river, and a league from there another river, and another league from there another river, and another quarter of a league from there another river, and another league from there another large river, from which latter river to the Cabo de Campana it was about twenty miles, and they lay south-east of him. And the greater part of these rivers had large mouths, wide and clear, with wonderful harbours for very large ships, without rocky or sandy bars or reefs. Coming thus along the coast in the direction of the south-east from the said last river he found a large village, the largest he had found until then, and he saw a great number of people come to the sea-shore crying out loudly, all naked and with their spears in their hands. He desired to speak with them and lowered the sails and anchored and sent the boats from the ship and the caravel in an orderly manner, that the Spaniards might not do and harm to the Indians or receive any front them, commanding them to give the Indians some trifles from their articles of barter. The Indians made an appearance of not allowing them to land and of resisting them. And seeing that the boats approached nearer to the land and that the Spaniards were not afraid, they withdrew from the sea. And believing that if two or three men got out of the boats they would not be afraid, three Christians landed telling them in their language not to be afraid, as they knew something of the language from conversation with the Indians they were taking with them. Finally they all started to flee so that neither a grown person nor child remained. The three Christians went to the houses which are made of straw and of the same shape as the others they had seen, and they found no one and nothing in any of them. They returned to the ships and spread the sails at mid-day to go to a beautiful cape which lay to the east, at a distance of about eight leagues. Having gone half a league along the same bay the Admiral saw in the direction of the south a very remarkable harbour and in the direction of the south-east some wonderfully beautiful countries, similar to a hilly tract of fruitful ground surrounded by mountains, and a great quantity of smoke and large villages appeared in it and the lands were highly cultivated. On this account he determined to go down to this harbour and try and see if he could have speech and intercourse with the people. He says that if he had praised the other harbours, this one was such that he praised it more, together with the countries and their surroundings and the temperate climate and the population: he says wonders about the beauty of the land and of the trees where there are pines and palms, and about the great plain which however is not entirely level {no es llanode llano} and extends to the south-south-east, but is full of low smooth mountains, the most beautiful thing in the world, and many streams of water flow out from it, which descend from these mountains. After having anchored the vessel the Admiral jumped into the boat to sound the harbour, which is shaped like a small hammer: and when he was facing the entrance to the south he found the mouth of a river which was wide enough for a galley to enter it and so situated that it could not be seen until it was reached, and in entering it a boat's length it was five fathoms and eight fathoms in depth. In going along this river it was a wonderful thing to see the groves and verdure and the very clear water and the birds and the agreeableness, so that he says it appeared to him that he did not wish to leave there. He went on, saying to the men he had in his company that in order to make a relation to the Sovereigns of the things they saw, a thousand tongues would not be sufficient to tell it nor his hand to write it, as it appeared to him that he was enchanted. He desired that many other prudent persons and of good credit should see it, so as to be certain. He says, that they did not praise these things less than he did. The Admiral further says these words here:

"How great will be the benefit which can be derived from here, I do not write. It is certain, Lords and Princes, that where there are such lands there must be an infinite quantity of profitable things: but I do not stop in any harbour because I would like to see the greatest number of lands that I can, so as to tell your Highnesses about them, and also do not know the language, and the people of these lands do not understand me nor do I or any other person I have with me, understand them: and these Indians I am taking with me, many times understand things contrary to what they are, neither do I trust much to them because they have attempted flight several times. But now, our Lord pleasing, I will see the most that I can, and little by little I will go investigating and learning, and will cause this language to be taught to persons of my house because I see that the language is all one up to the present: and then the benefits will be known, and one will labour to make all these peoples Christians as it can be done easily, because they have no sect nor are they idolaters, and your Highnesses will order a city and fortress to be built in these regions and these countries will be converted. And I certify to your Highnesses that it does not appear to me that there can be under the sun countries more fertile, more temperate in heat and cold, with a greater abundance of good and healthy waters, not like the rivers of Guinea which are all pestilent; because, praised be our Lord, until to-day, of all my people I have not bad a person who has had the headache or has been in bed from sickness, except one old man through pain from gravel, from which he has suffered all his life, and then he became well at the end of two days. I say this in regard to all three ships. So that it will please God that your Highnesses shall send learned men here, or they shall come and they will then see the truth of everything. And as previously I have spoken of the site of a village or fortress on the Rio de Mares on account of the good harbour and the surrounding territory: it is certain that all I have said is true, but there is no comparison between that place and this, neither with the Mar de Nuestra Senora: as here there must be large villages and an innumerable population inland and things of great profit: because here and in all the other countries I have discovered and which I hope to discover before I go to Castile, I say that Christendom will enter into negotiations, and Spain much more than the rest, to which all must be subject. And I say that, your Highnesses must not consent that any foreigner set foot here or trade but only Catholic Christians, since this was the beginning and the end of the proposition that it should be for the increase and glory of the Christian religion, and that no one should come to these regions who is not a good Christian." All are his words. He ascended the river there and found some branches and going around the harbour he found at the mouth of the river there were some very pleasant groves like a most delightful orchard, and there he found a raft or canoe made of a timber as large as a fusta with twelve benches for the rowers and very beautiful, stranded under a shed made of wood, and covered with great palm leaves, so that neither the sun nor the water could injure it and he says that there was the right place to build a village or city and fortress on account of the good harbour, good waters, good lands, good surroundings and great quantity of wood.


He remained in that harbour that day because it rained and was very dark and cloudy, although he could have run along the coast with the wind, which was south-west and would be at the stern a popa, but as he could not see the land well and not being acquainted with it, it was dangerous to the ships, and he did not start. The people of the ships landed to wash their clothes and some of them went inland a little ways and found large villages and empty houses because all the people had fled. They returned down along another river, larger than the one where they were, in the harbour.


As it rained and the sky was clouded they did not start. Some of the Christians reached another village near by in the direction of the north-west, and they found nothing and no one in the houses: and on the way they encountered an old man who could not flee from them: they took him and said to him that they did not wish to do him harm, and they gave him some trifles from the articles of barter and left him. The Admiral would have liked to see him to clothe him and talk with him, because he was greatly pleased with the felicity of that land and its disposition to make a settlement in it, and he judged that there must be large villages. They found in one house a cake of wax, which he brought to the Sovereigns and he says that where there is wax there must also be a thousand other good things. The sailors also found in one house the head of a man in a little basket covered with another little basket and fastened to a post of the house and in the same manner they found another in another village. The Admiral believed that they must be the heads of some principal persons of the family, because those houses were such that many people could take refuge in one alone, and they must be relations descended from one person alone.


He could not start because the wind was east, very contrary to his course. He sent eight men well armed and with them two Indians from among those he was taking with him to see the villages within the country and to talk with the inhabitants. They reached many houses and found nothing nor any one, as all had fled. They saw four youths who were digging in their fields, but as they saw the Christians they fled and they could not overtake them. They went a long distance, he says. They saw many settlements and very fertile ground and all cultivated and large streams of water and near one they saw a raft or canoe ninety-five palms long built of one single timber and very beautiful, and it would hold one hundred and fifty persons and they could navigate in it.


He did not start as the wind was still contrary and as it rained hard. He placed a large cross at the entrance of that harbour which I believe he called the Puerto Santo, in some solid rocks. The point is the one on the south-eastern side at the entrance to the harbour and whoever is obliged to enter this harbour must approach nearer to the point on the north-west than to the other on the south-east. Although at the foot of both points, next to the rock, there are twelve fathoms of water and it is very clear, yet at the entrance to the harbour, off the south-east point there is a shoal which shows above the surface of the water, which is far enough distant from the point so that one can pass between them if necessary, because at the foot of the shoal and of the cape the water is all twelve or fifteen fathoms deep, and at the entrance the prow must be turned to the south-west.


The wind was still contrary and he could not start. He says that every night there is a land breeze and that all the ships that may come there need have no fear of all the tempests in the world because they cannot reach the ships inside, on account of a shoal which is at the entrance to the harbour, etc. In the mouth of that river he says a ship's boy found certain stones which appeared to contain gold, and he brought them to show to the Sovereigns. He says that at a distance of a lombard shot from that place there are large rivers.


As the wind continued contrary he did not start from that harbour and he decided to go and see a very beautiful cape a quarter of a league from the harbour in the direction of the south-east: he went with the boats and some armed people: at the foot of the cape there was the mouth of a good river. He turned his prow to the south-east in order to enter and it was a hundred paces in width: it was a fathom deep at the entrance or in the mouth; but inside it was twelve fathoms, or five, and four, and two, and would contain as many ships as there are in Spain. Passing a branch of that river he went to the south-east and found a small bay or inlet in which he saw five very large rafts which the Indians call canoes, like fustas, very beautiful, and carved so that he says it was a pleasure to see them and at the foot of the mountain he saw that the land was all cultivated. They were under some very thick trees and in going along a path which led to them, they came across a ship yard very well arranged and covered so that neither the sun nor the water could do injury, and in it there was another canoe made of wood like the rest, like a fusta with seventeen benches for the rowers: it was a pleasure to see how it was constructed and its beauty. He ascended a mountain and then he found it all level and sowed with many products of the land and gourds, and it was delightful to see it: and in the midst of it there was a large village. He came suddenly upon the people of the village and as they saw the Spaniards they started to flee. The Indian whom the Spaniards had with them reassured them saying that they must not be afraid as they were good people. The Admiral caused them to be given hawks' bells and rings of brass and little green and yellow glass beads, with which they were much pleased. He saw that they had no gold nor any other precious thing and that it was sufficient to leave them in security and that all the surrounding territory was populated and that at the others fled through fear: and the Admiral assures the Sovereigns that ten men cause ten thousand Indians to flee. They are such cowards and so fearful that they carry no arms except spears, and on the end of the spears they have a small sharp stick which is hardened. He decided to return. He says that he easily took all the spears away from them, trading for them so that they gave away all they had. Having returned to the place where he had left the boats he sent certain Christians to the place where he had ascended, because it appeared to him that he had seen a large apiary. Before these people whom he had sent, returned, many Indians gathered and came to the boats where the Admiral had already united all his people. One of them went forward into the water near to the stern of the boat, and made a long speech which the Admiral did not understand, except that the other Indians from time to time raised their hands to heaven and shouted loudly. The Admiral thought they were re-assuring him and that his coming pleased them; but he saw the Indian he was taking with him change countenance and become yellow like wax and tremble greatly, saying by signs that the Admiral must go away out of the river as the Indians wished to kill them: and he approached a Christian who had a loaded cross-bow and showed it to the Indians and the Admiral understood that he said to them that it would kill them all because that cross-bow went a long ways and killed. He also took a sword and drew it from the scabbard, showing it to them and saying the same thing and when they heard that, they all commenced to flee, leaving the said Indian still trembling through cowardice and lack of courage, and he was a strong man and of good stature. The Admiral would not go out of the river but rather made them row inland toward the place where the Indians were, who were in great number, all stained with red and naked as their mothers gave them birth and some of them had feathers upon their heads and other plumes, and they all had handfuls of spears. "I approached them and gave them some mouthfuls of bread and asked them for their spears and I gave them for the spears, to some a small hawk's bell, to others a cheap little brass ring, and to others some worthless little beads: so that they all became pacified and they all came to the boats and gave us whatever they had for whatever was given them. The sailors had killed a tortoise and the pieces of the shell lay in the boat and the boys gave the Indians a piece as large as the finger nail, and the Indians gave them a handful of spears. They are people like the others I have found (says the Admiral) and have the same belief, and they believe that we came from heaven and whatever they have they without saying that it is little then give for whatever may be given them, and I believe that they would do the same with spices and gold if they had them. I saw a beautiful house not very large and having two doors, as they are all built so, and I entered it and saw a wonderful arrangement like chambers constructed in a certain manner which I do not know how to describe, with shells and other things fastened to the ceiling. And I thought it was a temple, and I called them and asked by signs if they prayed in it, and they said no, and one of them went up overhead and gave me all they had there, and I took some of it."


He made sail with a light wind arid went out of that port which he named Puerto Santo: at a distance of two leagues he saw a good river of which he spoke yesterday. He went along the coast and all the land beyond the said cape extended east-south-east and west-north-west as far as Cabo Lindo which is to the east of the Cabo del Monte quarter south-east, and it is five leagues from one to the other. A league and a half from the Cabo del Monte there is another large river, somewhat crooked, and it appeared to have a good entrance and to be very deep; and three-quarters of a league from there he saw another very large river and it must flow from a long distance. It was a good one hundred paces wide at the mouth and there was no shoal in it and it was eight fathoms deep and had a good entrance, because he sent a boat to see it and sound it: and the water is fresh at some distance out into the sea and it is one of the richest he has found and must have large villages. Beyond Cabo Lindo there is a large bay which extends some distance to the east-north-east and south-east and south-south-west.


During all this night he beat about off Cabo Lindo, where he was at nightfall, in order to see the country which extended to the east and at sunrise he saw another cape two leagues and a half to the east: having passed that he saw that the coast turned to the south and inclined to the south-west and then saw a very high and beautiful cape in the said course and it was distant seven leagues from the other: He would have liked to go there had it not been that he was desirous of going to the island of Babeque which lay to the north-east according to what the Indians he was taking with him said, so he left it. Neither could he go to Babeque because the wind which was prevailing was north-east. While going along in this manner he looked to the south-east and saw land I and it was a very large island of which he says he had already been told by the Indians and that they called it Bohio and it was inhabited. He says that the inhabitants of Cuba or Juana and of all the other islands are very much afraid of these people, because he says that they eat men. The said Indians told him other very wonderful things by signs: but the Admiral does not say that he believed them, only that the natives of that island of Bohio must be more astute and intelligent in order to capture the others, as they were very much lacking in courage. Therefore as the wind was north-east and was becoming north, he determined to leave Cuba or Juana, which up to that time he had considered to be the continental land on account of its size as he had gone fully one hundred and twenty leagues on one of its coasts, and he started to the south-east quarter east; although the land which he had seen receded to the south-east this insured protection, because the wind always changed around from north to north-east and from there to the east and south-east. The wind changed a great deal and he carried all his sails, the sea was calm and the current helped him so that from morning until one o'clock he made eight miles an and that was not quite six hours, because they say there that the nights are about fifteen hours; afterwards he went ten miles an hour: and in this manner he went until sunset eighty-eight miles, which are twenty-two leagues all to the south-east. And as it was getting towards night, the Admiral ordered the caravel Niña to go onward and see the harbour by daylight, as she was a fast sailor: and on reaching the mouth of the harbour which was like the bay of Cadiz and as it was already night, the Niña sent her boat to sound the harbour which boat carried a lighted candle: and before the Admiral reached the place where the caravel was beating about and waiting for the boat to make signals to enter the harbour, the light in the boat was extinguished. As they saw no light the caravel ran out and made a light for the Admiral to see and he having reached them, they told him what had happened. While they were in this situation, the people in the boat made another light. The caravel went to the boat and the Admiral was not able to do so and remained all that night beating about.


When dawn came he found himself four leagues from the harbour. He named it Puerto Maria and he saw a beautiful cape to the south, quarter south-west which he named Cabo del Estrella, and it appeared to him that it was the last land of that island toward the south, and that the Admiral was about twenty-eight miles distant from it. Another country appeared to the east, like an island of no great size, at a distance of about forty miles. Another very beautiful cape of good shape lay to the east quarter south-east which he named Cabo del Elefante, and it was fifty-four miles distant from him. Another cape lay to the east-south-east which he named Cabo de Cinquin, and it was about twenty-eight miles distant from him. There was a large opening or arm of the sea which appeared like a river to the south-east a little on the quarter of the east and it was a matter of twenty miles distant from him. It appeared to him that between the Cabo del Elefante and Cinquin there was a very large channel and some of the sailors said it was a division of the island: he named that the Isla de la Tortuga. That great island appeared to be a very high land, not encircled by mountains but level like beautiful fields and it appeared to be all cultivated or a large part of it and the crops looked like wheat in the month of May in the country of Cordova. They saw many fires that night and by day much smoke like watch towers which appeared to be to guard against some people with whom they might be at war. At the coast of this land extends to the east. At the hour of vespers they entered the said harbour and as it was the day of St. Nicholas he named it Puerto de San Nicolao his honour, and at the entrance of the harbour they wondered at its beauty and goodness. And although he has praised the harbours of Cuba greatly, still without doubt he says that this one is not inferior hut rather surpasses them and none of them are similar to it. At the mouth and entrance it is a league and a half wide and the prow is turned to the south-south-east, although on account of the great width the prow can be turned wherever desired. It extends in this manner to the south-south-east two leagues: and at its entrance in the direction of the south it forms something like a promontory and from there it extends thus level as far as the cape where there is a very beautiful beach and a field of trees of a thousand kinds and all loaded with fruits which the Admiral believed to be spices and nutmegs but as they were not ripe he did not recognise the kind: and there was a river in the middle of the beach. The depth of this harbour is wonderful as up to arriving at land for a length of {lacuna} the lead did not touch the bottom at forty fathoms and there is, up to this stretch of water, a depth of fifteen fathoms and it is very clear, and so all the said harbour from each point up to the distance of a pace from land, is fifteen fathoms deep and clear. And in this manner all the water along the coast is very deep and clear so that not a single shoal appears: and at the foot of the land at about the distance of a boat's oar from it, it is five fathoms in depth and beyond the space of the said harbour, extending to the south-south-east, in which harbour a thousand caracks could beat about, an inlet of the harbour extends to the north-east a good half league inland, and always of the same width as if it were measured with a cord. It is so situated that being in that inlet which is twenty-five paces in width, the mouth of the large entrance cannot be seen, so that this harbour is inclosed; and the depth of this inlet from the beginning to the end is eleven fathoms and it all has a sandy bottom and it is eight fathoms deep up to where the vessels can touch land. All the harbour is very breezy and desabahado shelterless and there are no trees around it. All this island appears to have more rocks than any other which has been found: the trees are smaller and many of them are the same kind as those in Spain such as evergreen oaks and strawberry trees and others, and the same thing is true in regard to the grasses. The land is very high and all smooth and the breezes are very good, and it has not been as cold anywhere as here, although it is not to be considered as cold, but the Admiral called it so in comparison with the other countries. Opposite that harbour there was a beautiful plain and in the centre of it the aforesaid river: and in that region, he says, there must be great numbers of people since they saw the canoes in which so many of them navigate and some of them as large as a "fusta" with fifteen benches for the rowers. All the Indians fled when they saw the ships. Those Indians he was taking with him from the small islands were so desirous of going to their country, that they thought says the Admiral that after he left this place he was to take them to their homes, and that already they were suspicious because he did not take the route for their homes. On this account he says that he did not believe what they said nor did he understand them well nor did they understand him, and he says they were in the greatest fear in the world of the people of that island. So that if he had desired to talk with the people of that island it would have been necessary for him to remain there some days in that harbour, but he did not do it on account of seeing so much land and as he was doubtful that the good weather would continue. He hoped in the Lord that the Indians he was carrying would know his language and he would know theirs, and then he would return and would talk with this people, and that it would please the Lord (he says) that he should find a good trade in gold before he returned.


At the passing of the quarter of dawn he made sail and started out of that Puerto de San Nicolas and navigated with the wind south-west two leagues to the north-east as far as a point which the Carenero makes, and a small promontory lay to the south-east and the Cabe de la Estrella to the south-west and from this the Admiral was twenty-four miles distant. From there he navigated to the east along the coast as far as Cabo Cinquin, a distance of about forty-eight miles. It is true that twenty miles of this extended to the east, quarter north-east and that coast is all a very high land and the water of great depth; it is twenty and thirty fathoms up to the edge of the land and at a distance of a lombard shot from land the bottom cannot be readied. The Admiral proved all this on that day along the coast, much to his pleasure, with the wind south-west. The promontory above mentioned, he says, reaches within a lombard shot of the Puerto de San Nicolas, and if it were cut off and made an island, it would be about three or four miles around. All that country was very high and did not have large trees but only evergreen oaks and strawberry-trees the same he says, as in the land of Castile. Before he reached the Cabo Cinquin and within two leagues, he discovered a small opening like a cut in the mountain, through which he discovered a very large valley and he saw that it was all sown with barley and he thought that there must be a great many people in that valley and on the borders of it there were large and high mountains and when he reached the Cabo de Cinquin the Cabo de la Tortuga lay to the north-east at a distance of about thirty-two miles, and off this Cabo Cinquin at the distance of a lombard shot is a rock in the sea which stands high up and which can be seen very well. And the Admiral being off the said Cape the Cabo del Elefante lay to the east, quarter south-east and was at a distance of about seventy miles and all the land was very high. And at a distance of six leagues he saw a large bay and he saw in the land within very large valleys and tracts of arable land and very high mountains, all like those in Castile. And then at a distance of eight miles he found a very deep river but very crooked, although one carack could enter it very well and the mouth was free from banks or shoals. And then at a distance of sixteen miles he found a very wide harbour, and so deep that he did not find the bottom at the entrance and only at three paces from the shore, where it was fifteen fathoms and it extends inland a quarter of a league. And although it was still very early being one o'clock after mid-day and the wind was in the stern and very strong, still because the sky looked as though it would rain very hard and it was very dark and cloudy,--which if it is dangerous in a familiar country is much more so when it is unfamiliar,--he decided to enter the harbour which he named Puerto de la Concepcion, and went to land in a rather small river which is at the end of the harbour, and which flows through some plains and level tracts of arable land which were wonderful to see on account of their beauty. He took nets to fish, and before he reached land a mullet {lisa} like those in Spain, jumped into the boat and until that time no fish had been seen like those in Castile. The sailors fished and killed others, also soles and other fish like those in Castile. He went a short distance along that country which is all cultivated and he heard the nightingales sing and other small birds like those of Castile. They saw five men, but they would not wait and fled. He found myrtle and other trees and grasses like those in Castile and the country and the mountains are like Castile.


There in that harbour it rained hard with the wind in the north and very strong. The harbour is safe from all the winds except the north wind although it cannot do any damage to vessels because there is a great surf or undertow which does not allow the ship to work upon the cables nor the water from the river {que no da lugar a que la nas labore sobre las amarras ni el agua del rio}. After midnight the wind shifted to the north-east and afterward to the east. This harbour is well sheltered from these winds by the island of Tortuga which is opposite it at a distance of thirty-six-miles.


This day it rained and the weather was wintry the same as in Castile in the month of October. No village had been seen except one very beautiful house in the Puerto de S. Nicolas and which was constructed better than those which had been seen in other places. The island is very large and the Admiral says that it will not be much to say that it measures two hundred leagues around {ne sera mucho que boje doscientas leguas}. He has seen that it is all well cultivated. He believed that all the villages must be at some distance from the sea from which place they can see when he is approaching, and so the inhabitants all fled and took with them all they had and lighted signal fires as though they were war-like people. This harbour is a thousand paces at the mouth which is a quarter of a league. In it there is no bank or shoal but rather the bottom can hardly be found until you go in to the shore of the sea and inside it extends a thousand paces in length all clear and with a sandy bottom, so that any ship whatever can anchor in it without fear and enter without caution. At the head of the harbour there are the mouths of two rivers which discharge a small quantity of water. Opposite there are some of the most beautiful plains in the world and which are almost like the lands of Castile only these are better, and on this account he named the island Espanola.


The wind blew hard from the north-east and caused the anchors to drag half a cable's length at which the Admiral wondered, and he thought it was because the anchors were near land and the wind blew toward it. And having seen that the wind was contrary for him to go where he desired, he sent six men well armed on land, with orders to go two or three leagues inland to see if they could talk with anyone. They went and returned not having found any people or houses. They found nevertheless some huts and very wide roads, and places where many fires had been made. They saw the best lands in the world and they found many mastic trees and they brought some of it and said that there was a great deal, but that now is not the time to gather it because it does not now form into gum.


He did not start on account of the wind which was still east and north-east. In front of that harbour as has been said is the Isla de la Tortuga and it appears like a large island and the coast extends almost in the same direction as that of Espanola, and it may be at the most, from one to the other, ten leagues: that is to say, from the Cabo de Cinquin at the head of Tortuga, for then its coast extends to the south. He says he would like to see that place between these two islands in order to see the Isla Espanola, which is the most beautiful thing in the world, and because according to what the Indians he had with him said, one must go yonder to reach the island of Babeque. These Indians said that it was a very large island with very large mountains and rivers and valleys, and they said that the island of Bohio was larger than Juana which they call Cuba, and that it is not surrounded by water: and they appear to give it to be understood as continental land which is here behind this Espanola, and which they call Caritaba and say that it is of infinite importance and they almost make it appear reasonable that these countries may be harassed by astute people because the inhabitants of all these islands live in great fear of the people of Caniba, "and so I repeat as I have said at other times (he says) that Caniba is no other than the people of the Great Khan who must be very near here and have ships and come to capture these people, and as the captives do not return they believe they have eaten them. Each day we understand these Indians better and they understand us better, although many times they may have understood one thing for another (says the Admiral)." He sent people on land and they found a great deal of mastic not coagulated, and he says the rains must do this, and that in Xio they gather it in March and that in January they could gather it in these countries as it is so temperate. They caught many fish like those in Castile, dace, salmon, hake, doree, pampano, lisas mullet, conger eels, shrimp, and they saw sardines. They found a great deal of aloe.


They did not start on this day on account of the aforesaid contrary wind. He placed a large cross at the entrance of the harbour on the western side, on a very slight elevation, "as a sign (he says) that Your Highnesses hold the land for your own and principally as a sign of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and in honour of Christianity." Having placed the cross, three sailors started up the mountain to see the trees and grasses and they heard a large crowd of people, all naked like those they had seen, and they called to them and went after them, but the Indians fled. "And finally they took a woman who could go no farther because I (he says) had ordered them to take some of the Indians in order to show them honour and cause them to lose their fear and see if they had profitable things, as it appeared it could not be otherwise on account of the beauty of the country: and so they brought the woman, a very young and beautiful girl, to the ship, and she talked with those Indians, because they all had the same language." And the Admiral caused her to be clothed and gave her glass beads and hawks' bells and brass rings, and sent her to land again very honourably, according to his custom. He sent some persons from the ship with her; and three of the Indians he had with him, to talk with that people. The sailors who went in the boat, when they took her to land, told the Admiral that she did not wish to go out of the ship if she could not remain with the other Indian women he had caused to be taken in the Puerto de Mares de la Isla Juana of Cuba. All these Indians who came with that Indian woman, he says, came in a canoe, which is their caravel in which they navigate everywhere, and when they appeared at the entrance of the harbour and they saw the ships they turned backward and left the canoe yonder in some place, and went away on the road to their village. The Indian woman showed the location of the village. This woman wore a small piece of gold in her nose, which was an indication that there was gold in that island.


The three men whom the Admiral had sent with the woman returned at three o'clock in the night, and they did not go with her as far as the village because it appeared a long way off, or because they were afraid. They said that the next day many people would come to the ships because they must already be re-assured by the news the woman would give them. The Admiral being desirous to learn whether there was anything valuable in that country and in order to have some conversation with the people as their land was so beautiful and fertile, and that they might be disposed to serve the Sovereigns, decided to send again to the village, confiding in the news given by the Indian woman that the Christians were good people. For this purpose he selected nine men well prepared with arms and adapted for such an affair, with whom an Indian from among those he had with him went also. They went to the village which was four leagues and a hall to the south-east and which they found in a very large valley and unoccupied; because when the Indians heard the Christians coming, they all fled inland leaving whatever they had behind them. The village consisted of more than three thousand men and had a thousand houses. The Indian the Christians had with them, ran after the others calling to them, saying that they must not be afraid as the Christians were not from Cariba, but instead they were from heaven and that they gave many beautiful things to every one they found. They were so much impressed with what he said, that they were re-assured and more than two thousand came together, and all came to the Christians and placed their hands upon their heads, which was a sign of great reverence and friendship, and they were all trembling until they were greatly re-assured. The Christians said that after they were entirely freed from fear they all went to their houses, and each one brought them some of whatever they had to eat, which was bread of "niames" I which are roots like large radishes, which they sow and which grow and are planted in all their lands, and upon which they live: and they make bread of them and boil and roast them and they taste like chestnuts, and there is no one who does not believe, in eating them, that they are chestnuts. They gave the Christians bread and fish and whatever they had. And as the Indians he had in the ship had understood that the Admiral desired to have a parrot, it appears that the Indian who was with the Christians told the other Indians something of this, and so they brought the Christians parrots and gave them as many as they wished without requiring anything for them. They begged them not to come away that night and said they would give them many other things they had in the mountains. At the time when all those people were together with the Christians they saw a great multitude of people coming with the husband of the woman whom the Admiral had honoured and sent back. They were carrying this woman upon their shoulders and they came to thank the Admiral for the honour he had done her and the presents he had given her. The Christians told the Admiral that they were all a handsomer people and of better disposition than any others they had found until that time: but the Admiral says that he does not know how they can be of better disposition than the others, causing it to be understood that all those who had been found in the other islands were very well disposed. As to their beauty the Christians say that there is no comparison as well in the women as the men and that they are whiter than the others and that among the rest they saw two young girls as white as any could be in Spain. They said also in regard to the beauty of the lands that the best in Castile in beauty and goodness had no comparison with them, and the Admiral also saw it from those he had seen and from those he had before him, and they told him that those which he saw were not to be compared with the lands in that valley and that they were as much different from the field of Cordova as day is from night. They said that all those lands were cultivated and that a river flowed through the middle of that valley very large and wide, and which could irrigate all the lands. All the trees were green and full of fruit, and the grasses were all in flower and very high: the roads were very wide and good, the breezes were like those in Castile in the month of April, the nightingale and other small birds were singing as they do in Spain in the same month, so that they say it was the sweetest thing in the world. Small birds sang sweetly during the nights: many crickets and frogs were heard: there were fish the same as in Spain. They saw many mastic trees and aloes and cotton plantations: they found no gold and it is not wonderful that in such a short time they did not find any. The Admiral here ascertained the number of hours in the day and the night and from sun to sun; he found that twenty ampolletas glasses of half an hour each passed, although he says there might have been some error either because they were not turned quickly enough, or because some of the sand did not run through. He says also that he found by the quadrant that he was thirty-four degrees distant from the equinoctial line.


He started from that Puerto de la Concepcion with a land breeze, and then after a little it calmed, and thus he experienced it each day of those he remained there. Afterward the wind became east. He navigated in this wind to the north-north-east and reached the Isla de la Tortuga and saw a point on this island which he called the Punta Pierna which was to the east-north-east of the head of the island, and might be at a distance of twelve miles, and from there he discovered another point which he called the Punta Lanzada in the same route to the north-east, which was about sixteen miles distant. And thus from the head of the Tortuga as far as the Punta Aguda it would be about forty-four miles, which are seven leagues, to the east-north-east. On that course there were some long strips of beaches. This island of Tortuga is a very high country but not mountainous, and is very beautiful and well populated the same as the island of Espanola and the land is all so cultivated that one appears to see the field of Cordova. Having seen that the wind was contrary and that he could not go to the island of Babeque, he decided to return to the Puerto de la Concepcion, from whence he had started, and he was not able to reach a river which is two leagues from the said harbour in the direction of the east.


He started from the Puerto de la Concepcion again on his course, but on going out of the harbour the wind blew strongly from the east which was contrary for him, and he turned and went to the Tortuga and from there he made an excursion to see that river which he had wished to see and reach yesterday and was not able to do so, and this time he could not make it either, although he anchored half a league to the leeward on a beach,--a good and clear harbour. Having anchored his vessels he went with the boats to see the river and entered an arm of the sea which is a half league nearer and it was not the mouth. He returned and found the mouth which was not even a fathom in depth and which had a very strong current: he entered it with the boats in order to reach the villages which the people he had sent the day before yesterday had seen and he threw the line on land and by means of the sailors pulling on it the boats ascended a distance of two lombard shots and he was not able to go farther on account of the strong current in the river. He saw some houses and the large valley where the villages are, and he said that he had never seen a more beautiful thing; and that river flowed through the middle of the valley. He also saw people at the entrance to the river, but all started to flee. He says further that those people must be very much hunted since they live in so much fear, because on reaching any place they make smoke signals by means of towers throughout all the land, and they do this more in this island of Espanola and in Tortuga, which also is a large island, than in the others he had left behind. He named the valley Valle del Paraiso and the river Guadalquivir, because he says that it flows thus as large as the Guadalquivir by Cordova, and it shows very beautiful stones on its banks or edges and it is all navigable.


At midnight in a very light land breeze be made sail to get out of that gulf, and in coming from the coast of the Isla Espanola he sailed close to the wind because afterward at the hour of tercia the wind blew from the east. In the middle of the gulf he found a canoe with an Indian alone in it, upon which the Admiral wondered how he was able to keep himself upon the water when there was such a high wind. He caused him and his canoe to be placed in the ship, and to flatter him, gave him glass beads, hawks' bells and brass rings and took him in his ship to land at a village which was sixteen miles from there beside the sea, where the Admiral anchored and found a good anchorage on the beach next to the village, which appeared to be newly built because all the houses were new. The Indian then went away with his canoe to land and gave news of the Admiral and of the Christians as being good people although they already considered them so through information from the others where the six Christians had gone, and then more than five hundred men came and after a little their King came, and they all gathered on the beach near the ships for they were anchored very near the land. And then one by one and in crowds they came to the ship without bringing anything with them, although some of them wore grains of very fine gold in their ears and noses, which they then gave away willingly. The Admiral ordered that all should be treated honorably, "and (says he) because they are the best and mildest people in the world: and above all because I have great hope in our Lord that your Highnesses will make them all Christians and they will all belong to you, for I regard them as yours." He saw also that the said King was on the beach as they all showed him respect. The Admiral sent him a present which he says he received with great state, and that he must have been a young man of about twenty-one years of age, and that he had an old governor or tutor and other counsellors who counseled him and replied to him and that he spoke very few words. One of the Indians the Admiral had with him spoke with the King and told him how the Christians came from heaven and that they were going in search of gold, and wished to go to the Isla de Beneque: and he replied that it was well and that in the said island there was a great deal of gold; he showed the Admiral's Alguacil who took him the present, the course that must be taken to go there and said that in two days one could go from that place to the island, and that if the Spaniards needed anything in his country, he would give it to them very willingly. This King and all the others went about naked as their mothers gave them birth, and the women also, without any timidity and they are the handsomest men and women who had been found up to that time: exceedingly white so that if they wore clothing and were protected from the sun and the air they would be almost as white as the people in Spain, for this country is very cool and the best that language can describe: it is very high and upon the highest mountain ploughing could be done with oxen and everything could be transformed into arable lands and fields. In all Castile there is no land which can be compared to this in beauty and goodness. All this island and the island of Tortuga are entirely cultivated like the field of Cordova. They have the fields sown with "ajes" which are little branches which they plant, and at the foot of them small roots grow like carrots which serve as bread, and they grate them and knead them and make bread of them and afterward they plant the same little branch again in another place and it again produces four or five of those roots which are very palatable, and taste exactly like chestnuts. These which grow here are the largest and best he had seen anywhere, as he also says that he had them in Guinea. Those which grew in this place he says were as thick as the leg, and he says that all of the people there were strong and courageous and not feeble like the others he had found before, and they conversed very pleasantly and had no sect. And the trees there he says were so luxuriant that the leaves were not green but blackish in colour. It was a wonderful thing to see those valleys and the rivers and good waters and the lands suitable for bread-foods and for flocks of all kinds of which they had none, and suitable for orchards and for all the things in the world that a man may ask. Afterward in the afternoon the King came to the ship: the Admiral paid him the honour which was due him, and caused it to be said to him that he came from the Sovereigns of Castile who were the greatest Sovereigns in the world. But neither the Indians who were with the Admiral, who were the interpreters, believed anything of this, or the King either, but they believed the Christians came from heaven and that the realms of the Sovereigns of Castile were in the heavens and not in this world. The Christians gave the King some of the things of Castile to eat and he ate a mouthful and afterward gave all to his counsellors and to the Governor and to the others who were with him. "Your Highnesses may believe that these lands are so numerous and good and fertile and especially these of this Isla Espanola that there is no one who can describe it, and no one can believe it if he does not see it. And they may believe that this island and all the others are as much theirs as Castile as all that is necessary here is to build a town and order them to do what is desired. For I, with the people I have with me, who are not many in number, could go through these islands without any affront; as I have already seen three of these sailors go on land where there was a multitude of the Indians and they all fled without any one's wishing to do them harm. They have no arms and are all naked and have no knowledge of arms and are very cowardly, for a thousand of them would not face three Christians: and so they are suitable to be governed and made to work and sow and do everything else that shall be necessary, and to build villages and be taught to wear clothing and observe our customs."


It blew that night strongly, the wind being east-north-east but the sea did not change much, because the Isla de la Tortuga which is in front of it and makes a shelter for it, protected and guarded it. So he remained there during that day. He sent some of the sailors to fish with nets. The Indians associated with the Christians a great deal and they brought them certain arrows belonging to the people of Caniba or the Canibales, and these arrows are made of spikes of canes and they use some little sharp hardened sticks for them and they are very large. They showed the Christians two men who had lost some pieces of flesh from their bodies, and made them understand that the Cannibals had eaten them by piece-meals. The Admiral did not believe it. He again sent certain Christians to the village, and by trading some worthless little glass beads they obtained some pieces of gold beaten into the form of a thin leaf. One Indian whom the Admiral took for the Governor of that Province and who was called Cacique, they observed to have a piece of that gold leaf as large as the hand and it appeared that he wished to trade it. He went away to his house and the others remained in the plaza and he caused that piece of gold to be broken into very small pieces, and bringing a piece at a time, he traded for it. After there was no more remaining, he said by signs that he had sent for more and the next day they would bring it to him. All these things, and their manner, and their customs, and meekness and counsel show them to be a more alert and intelligent people than the others he had found up to that time, says the Admiral. In the afternoon a canoe came there from the Isla de la Tortuga with all of forty men and on reaching the beach all the people of the village who were together seated themselves as a sign of peace, and some from the canoe, and then almost all came on land. "The Cacique arose alone and with words which appeared to be threatening made them return to the canoe and threw them water and took stones from the beach and threw them in the water: and after all had very obediently placed themselves in the canoe and embarked, he took a stone and placed it in the hand of my Alguacil whom I had sent on land with the Escribano and others to see if they could bring back anything valuable,--that he might throw it, and the Alguacil would not do so." That Cacique there showed very plainly that be favoured the Admiral. The canoe then went away and they said to the Admiral after its departure that in Tortuga there was more gold than in the island of Espanola because it is nearer Baneque. The Admiral said that he believed there were no mines of gold either in the Isla Espanola or Tortuga, but that they brought it from Baneque and that they bring a small quantity because they have nothing to give for it, and that country is so rich that it is not necessary for them to work much to sustain themselves or clothe themselves as they go naked. And the Admiral believed that this was very near the fountain head and that our Lord was about to show him where the gold originates. He was informed that from there to Baneque it was four days' journey which must have been thirty or forty leagues, which he could make in one day of good wind.


He remained anchored by this beach during this day as there was no wind and also because the Cacique had said that gold would be brought not because he considered says the Admiral that much gold could be brought as there were no mines there, but in order to know better from whence it was brought. Then at dawn he ordered the ship and caravels decorated with arms and banners for the festival, as this was the day of Sancta Maria de la O, or the commemoration of the Annunciation. They fired many lombard shots: and the King of that Isla Espanola says the Admiral had arisen early from his house which must have been at a distance of five leagues from there, as well as he could judge, and he reached that village at the hour of tercia, where there were already some of the people from the ship whom the Admiral had sent to see if any gold was brought: these Christians said that more than two hundred men came with the King and that four men brought him in a litter and that he was a young man as told above. To-day as the Admiral was eating below the forecastle the King arrived at the ship with all his people. And the Admiral says to the Sovereigns: "With out doubt his state and the respect which they all show him would appear well to your Highnesses, although they are all without clothing. And as be entered the ship he found that I was eating at the table below the stern forecastle, and he came quickly to seat himself beside me and would not allow me to go to meet him or get up from the table but only that I should eat. I thought that he would like to eat some of our viands: and I then ordered that things should be brought him to eat. And when he entered under the forecastle, he signed with his band that all his people should remain without and they did so with the greatest haste and respect in the world and all seated themselves on the deck, except two men of mature age whom I took to be his counsellors and governors and who came and seated themselves at his feet: and of the viands which I placed before him he took of each one as much as may be taken for a salutation and then he sent the rest to his people and they all ate some of it and he did the same with the drink which he only touched to his mouth and then gave it to the others in the same way and it was all done in wonderful state and with very few words and whatever he said, according to what I was able to understand, was very formal and prudent and those two looked in his face and spoke for him and with him and with great respect. After eating, a page brought a belt which is like those of Castile in shape, but of a different make, which he took and gave to me and also two wrought pieces of gold which were very thin, as I believe they obtain very little of it here, although I consider they are very near the place where it has its home and that there is a great deal of it. I saw that a drapery that I had upon my bed pleased him. I gave it to him and some very good amber beads which I wore around my neck and some red shoes and a flask of orange flower water, with which he was so pleased it was wonderful; and he and his governor and counsellors were very sorry that they did not understand me, nor I, them. Nevertheless I understood that he told me that if anything from here would satisfy me that all the island was at my command. I sent for some beads of mine where as a sign I have an 'excelente' of gold upon which the images of your Highnesses are engraved and showed it to him, and again told him the same as yesterday that your Highnesses command and rule over all the best part of the world and that there are no other such great Princes: and I showed him the royal banners and the others with the cross, which he held in great estimation: and he said to his counsellors that your Highnesses must be great Lords, since you had sent me here from so far without fear: and many other things happened which I did not understand, except that I very well saw he considered everything as very wonderful." Then as it was already late and he wished to go away, the Admiral sent him in the boat with great honours and caused many lombards to be fired; and having reached land he got into his litter and went away with his two hundred men and more, and his son was carried behind him on the shoulders of an Indian, a very honourable man. Wherever he encountered the sailors and people from the ships, he ordered that something to eat should be given them and they should be paid a great deal of honour. A sailor said that he had met him on the way and had seen that all the things which the Admiral had given him were each one carried before the King by a man, who appeared to be one of the most important men. His son was following behind the King at some distance with as large a number of people as he had, and likewise a brother of the King, except that the brother was on foot and two of the principal men were leading him by the arms. This brother came to the ship, after the King came, and the Admiral gave him some things from the said articles of barter and then the Admiral learned that the King was called in his language Cacique. On this day he says he traded for only a small quantity of gold: but the Admiral learned from an old man that there were many islands in that vicinity at a distance of a hundred leagues and more, according to what he could understand, in which a great quantity of gold is found and in the others there is so much that he told him there was an island which was all gold, and there is such a quantity in the others that they gather it and sift it as with sieves and melt it and make "bars" and work it in a thousand ways: they show the manner in which this is done, by signs. This old man indicated to the Admiral the course to these islands and the place where they lay: the Admiral determined to go there and said that if the said old man had not been one of the principal persons belonging to the King that he would have detained him and taken him with him, or if he had known the language that he would have begged him to accompany him and be believed as he was on such good terms with him and with the Christians, that he would have gone with him of his own will. But as he already considered those people as belonging to the Sovereigns of Castile and it was not right to offend them, he decided to leave him. He placed a very large cross in the centre of the plaza of that village in which the Indians assisted greatly: and they said prayers, he said, and adored it, and from their actions the Admiral hopes in the Lord that all those islands are to be Christianised.


This night he made sail to get out of that gulf which the isla Espanola and Tortigo make there, and when day arrived the wind changed to the east, on which account during all that day he could not get out from between those two islands, and at night he was not able to reach a harbour I which appeared there. He saw four points of land near there and a large bay and river and from that place he saw a very large promontory, and there was a village and back of it a valley between many very high mountains, covered with trees which he judged to be pines; and upon the Dos Hermanos there is a very high and large mountain which extends from north-east to south-west and to the east-south-east of the Cabo de Torres there is a small island which he named Santo Tomas as the next day was his vigil. All around that island there are capes and wonderful harbours, according to what he could judge from the sea. In the forepart of the island on the western part there is a cape partly high and partly low which projects far out into the sea and on that account he named it Cabo Alto y Bajo. At a distance from Torres of sixty miles in the direction of the east, quarter south-east, there is a higher mountain than the other which projects into the sea and appears at a distance to be an island by itself on account of a cut which it has on the land side. He named it Monte Caribata because that province is called Caribata. It is very beautiful and covered with trees of a bright green without snow and without mists and the weather there in respect to the breezes and temperateness was the same as it is in Castile in the month of March and in respect to the trees and grasses it was like the month of May in Castile. The nights, he says, were of fourteen hours duration.


To-day at sunset he entered a harbour which was between the island of Santo Tomas and the Cabo de Caribata, and anchored. This harbour is very beautiful and all the ships there are in Christendom could be contained therein. Its entrance appears impossible from the sea to those who have not entered it, on account of some obstructing rocks which extend from the mountain almost as far as the island and which are not placed in order, but there is one here and another there, some in the sea and some by the land. On this account it is necessary to be watchful, in order to enter it by some entrances it has which are very wide and suitable to enter without fear, and the water is all seven fathoms deep and having passed the rocks it is twelve fathoms deep inside. The ship can be fastened with any cord whatever against any winds there may be. At the entrance of this harbour he says there is a channel {canal} which lies to the west of a small sandy island and there are many trees upon this island, and up to the foot of it there are seven fathoms of water: but there are many shoals in this vicinity and it is necessary to keep the eyes open until the harbour is entered: then there is no fear of all the tempests in the world. From that harbour a very large valley appeared, all cultivated, which descends to the harbour from the south-east: it is all surrounded with very high mountains which appear to reach heaven and are very beautiful and covered with green trees; and without doubt there are mountains there which are higher than the island of Tenerife in Canaria, which is held to be the highest that can be found. A league from this part of the Isla de Santo Tomas there is another small island and nearer than that, another; and in all there are wonderful harbours but it is necessary to look out for the shoals. The Admiral saw villages and the smoke which they made.


To-day he went with the boats from the ships to see that harbour: which he saw to be such that he affirms none yet seen is equal to it: and he excuses himself saying that he has praised those he has passed so much that he does not know how to rate this one highly enough: and he fears that he may be considered as magnifying the truth of things to an excessive degree. He guards against this, saying: that he is taking old sailors with him and these say, and will say the same, and so also every one of those who go on the sea: that is to say, that all his praises of the harbours he has passed are true and it is also the truth that this harbour is much better than all the others. He further says, as follows: "I have been twenty-three years upon the sea without quitting it for any time long enough to be counted, and I saw all the East and West as it is called in going to the north, which is England, and l have travelled through Guinea, but in all these regions the perfection of harbours will not he found...{lacuna of a line and a half} found always the {lacuna} better than the other. I considered what I had written very carefully and I say again that I assert I have written well and that now this harbour surpasses all the others, and all the ships in the would could be contained in it, and it is so sheltered that the oldest cable on a ship would hold it fast."

It is five leagues from the entrance to the innermost point. He saw very well cultivated lands, although they are all like that, and he ordered two men to get out of the boats and go to an elevation to see if there was a village, because none could be seen from the sea: although that night about ten o'clock certain Indians came to the ships in a canoe to see the Admiral and the Christians, as being something wonderful, and the Admiral gave them some of the articles of barter with which they were greatly pleased. The two Christians returned and told where they had seen a large village a little distance from the sea. The Admiral ordered them to row toward the place where the village was until they arrived near the land, and he saw some Indians who came to the sea-shore and it appeared that they came with fear, on which account he ordered the boats stopped and told the Indians he was carrying in the ships, to speak to them and tell them that no injury would be done to them. They then drew nearer to the sea and the Admiral drew nearer to the land, and after they became entirely free from fear, so many came that they covered the land, offering a thousand thanks, the men as well as the women and children. Some ran here and others there to bring us bread which they bake from niames, which they call "ajes," which is very white and good and they brought us water in gourds and in clay pitchers shaped like those of Castile, and they brought us all they had in the world and knew the Admiral wished for, and all so generously and joyfully that it was wonderful "and it cannot be said that because what they gave us was of little value that on this account they gave it freely (says the Admiral) because those who gave pieces of gold did it in the same way and as liberally as those who gave a gourd of water: and it is an easy thing to recognise (says the Admiral) when a thing is given very willingly and eagerly." These are his words. "These people have no pikes or spears or any other arms, neither have the other inhabitants of all this island, which I believe to be very large: they are naked as their mothers gave them birth, men as well as women; but in the other countries of Juana and those of the other islands the women wore in front, pieces of cotton something like men's breeches, with which they covered their genital parts, and especially after they had passed the age of twelve years, but here neither young nor old wore it. And in the other places all the men made the women hide from the Christians through jealousy, but here they do not, and there are some very pretty women, and they are the first who came to give thanks to Heaven and bring whatever they had, especially things to eat, bread made from 'ajes,' gonza avellanada and five or six kinds of fruits." The Admiral ordered some of the fruit cured in order to take it to the Sovereigns. The women in the other places he says did the same before they were concealed, and the Admiral ordered everywhere that all his people should he on guard not to annoy any of them in any manner, and that no one should take anything from them against their will, and so the Christians paid them for everything they received from them. Finally (says the Admiral) it cannot be believed that men have seen a people with such good hearts and so liberal in giving and so fearful that they strip themselves of everything to give all they have to the Christians, and on the arrival of the Christians, they then run to bring everything to them. Then the Admiral sent six Christians to the village to see what it was, and the people showed them all the honour they knew how and were able to show, and gave them whatever they had because they were no longer in any doubt but believed that the Admiral and all his people had come from Heaven: the Indians whom the Admiral had brought from the other islands also believed this, although what they ought to believe in respect to this matter had already been told them. After the six Christians had gone, certain canoes came bringing people to pray the Admiral on the part of a certain chief, to go to his village when he left this place. Canoa is a boat in which they navigate and some of them are large and some small. And having seen that the village of that chief was on the way, situated on a point of land, and that he was waiting for the Admiral with many people, he went there, but before he started, so many people, men and women and children, came to the shore that it was frightful and they were all crying loudly that he must not go away but must remain with them. The messengers of the other chief who had come to invite him were waiting with their canoes that he might not go away without going to see the Chief: and so he went to see him. When the Admiral arrived where that Chief was waiting for him with a great many things to eat, the Chief ordered all his people to be seated, telling them then to take whatever they had to eat to the boats where the Admiral was, near to the shores of the sea. And having seen that the Admiral had received what they had taken to him, all or the greater part of the Indians commenced running to the village, which must have been near, in order to bring him more eatables and parrots and other things which they had, with such generosity that it was wonderful. The Admiral gave them glass beads and brass rings and hawks' bells, not because they asked for anything but because it appeared to him that it was right, and above all (says the Admiral) because he already considers them as Christians and as belonging to the Sovereigns of Castile more than the people of Castile: and he says that nothing else is lacking save to know the language and to give them orders because all that they are ordered to do, they will do without any contradiction. The Admiral left that place for the ships, and the Indians, men, women, and children, cried out for the Christians not to go away but to remain with them. After the Christians left, canoes filled with the Indians followed them to the ships, and the Admiral treated them with great honour and gave them things to eat and other things they had with them. Another chief had also come previously from the west and many people even came swimming, though the ship was more than a long half league from the land. The Chief of whom I spoke, having returned, the Admiral sent certain persons to see him and question him about these islands: and he received them very well and took them with him to his village to give them certain large pieces of gold; and they arrived at a large river which the Indians swam across but the Christians were not able to do so and so they returned. In all this region there are very high mountains which appear to reach Heaven, so that the mountains of the island of Tenerife appear nothing in comparison with them in height and in beauty and they are all green and covered with forests which is a wonderful thing. In their midst are very delightful plains and at the foot of this harbour to the south there is such a great plain without an obstructing mountain, that the eyes cannot see to the end of it, and it appears that it must he fifteen or twenty leagues long: and a river flows through it and it is all populated and cultivated and is as green now as if it were in Castile in the month of May or June, although the nights are fourteen hours in length and the land is so northerly. Therefore this harbour is very good whatever winds may blow, sheltered and deep, and all the country is inhabited by a very good and mild people, and they have no arms either good or had. And any ship whatever may be free from fear in this harbour that other ships might come by night to assault it, because, although the mouth is more than two leagues wide, it is very contracted by reason of two rocky reefs which are hardly seen above the water: and there is a very narrow entrance in this reef which appears as if it could only have been made by hand, which left an opening wide enough for ships to enter. In the mouth it is seven fathoms in depth to the foot of a small level island which has a beach and trees at the foot of it: the entrance is to the west, and a ship can approach near enough to touch the rock without fear. There are three islands to the north-west and a large river a league from the head of the harbour. It is the best harbour in the world and he named it the Puerto de la Mar de Santo Tomas because this day was the day of St. Thomas. He called it a sea on account of its size.


At dawn he set sail in order to go on his course in search of the islands which the Indians said contained a great deal of gold, and that some contained more gold than land. But the weather was not favourable and he had to anchor again and sent the boat to fish with nets. The Chief of that country who had a place near there sent him a large canoe full of people, and in it one of his principal servants, to entreat the Admiral to go with the ships to his country and he would give him whatever he had. He sent the Admiral by this servant a belt which in place of a purse had a mask attached with two large ears and a tongue and nose of beaten gold. And this people are so generous that whatever is asked of them they give with the best will in the world, and it appears to them that in asking them for something a great favour is shown them. The Admiral says this. The Indians in the canoe met the boat from the ship and gave the belt to a boy and came with their canoe on board the ship to perform their errand. Before they could understand each other some part of the day passed, neither could the Indians whom the Admiral had with him understand them well, because there is some difference in the names of things: finally he finished by understanding the invitation of these Indians, by means of signs. The Admiral determined to start for that place on Sunday although he was not in the habit of leaving port on Sunday, solely on account of his devotion and not from any superstition whatever. But because he hopes, he says, that the people of those villages will he Christianised on account of their good-will, and that this will be accomplished by the Sovereigns of Spain, and because he already considers them as belonging to the Sovereigns, and that they may serve the Sovereigns lovingly he is agreeable to them and strives to please them. Before he started to-day he sent six men to a very large village three leagues from there to the west, because the Chief of that village came to the Admiral the day before and told him that he had certain pieces of gold. On the arrival of the Christians at that place the Chief took the Escribano of the Admiral who was with the Christians by the hand. The Admiral sent the Escribano to prevent the other Spaniards from doing anything unjust to the Indians because the Indians were so generous and the Spaniards so avaricious and unreasonable that they were not satisfied to have the Indians give them whatever they desired for the end of a leather strap and even for a piece of glass and earthen ware and for other things of no value; but even without giving them anything they desired to have everything and take everything, which the Admiral always prohibited, although the things they gave to the Christians with the exception of the gold were always of small value. But the Admiral, considering the generous hearts of the Indians, who would give, and in fact did give, a piece, of gold for six cheap little glass beads, on that account ordered that nothing should be received from them for which something was not given in payment. So that the Chief took the Escribano by the hand and conducted him to his house with all the people, a very great number, who accompanied him and made them give the Spaniards something to eat, and all the Indians brought them many things made of cotton and little balls of the same. Afterward in the afternoon the Chief gave them three very fat geese and some small pieces of gold. And a great number of Indians came with them carrying for them all the things for which they had traded and contending among themselves as to carrying them on their shoulders and they actually did carry them across some rivers and muddy places. The Admiral ordered that some things should be given to the Chief and he and all his people were greatly pleased, believing that the Christians had really come from heaven and they considered themselves fortunate in seeing them. More than one hundred and twenty canoes came to the ships on this day all loaded with people and all bringing something, especially their bread and fish, and water in small earthen jars and seeds of many good kinds of spices. They throw a grain of these seeds in a porringer of water and drink it and the Indians that the Admiral had with him say that it was a very healthful thing.


He could not start for the country of that Chief who had sent to entreat and invite him to come, as there was no wind: but he sent some people and the Escribano in the boats with the three messengers who were waiting there. In the meantime while they were gone, he sent two of the Indians he had with him to the villages which were near the place where the ships were, and these Indians returned with a chief to the ships, with the news that in that land of Espanola there was a great quantity of gold and that people from other places came there to buy it, and they told him that he would find as much as he desired there. Others came who confirmed there being much gold on the island and they showed him their manner of obtaining it. The Admiral understood all that with difficulty: but yet he felt certain that in those regions there was a very great quantity of gold and that in finding the place from which it is obtained he would get it very cheaply and as he imagined, even for nothing. And he repeats that he believes there must be a great deal of it, because in the three days which he remained in that harbour he had received good pieces of gold and he can not believe that it is brought there from another country. May our Lord, Who has all things in His hands assist me and give me whatever may be for His service. These are the words of the Admiral. He says that at that time he believes more than a thousand persons came to the vessel and they all brought something from what they possessed: and before they reached the ship, at a distance of half a cross-bow shot, they arose to their feet in their canoes and took what they were bringing in their hands, saying: "Take, Take." Also he says he believes that more than five hundred came swimming to the ships on account of not having canoes, and he was anchored about a league from land. He judged that five princes, sons of chiefs, with all their household, women and children, had come to see the Christians. The Admiral ordered something given to every one, because he says, it was all well employed, and he says: May our Lord in His mercy direct me until I find this gold, I say this Mine, because I have many people here who say that they know it: these are his words. The boats arrived in the night and they said that they had come from a long distance, and that at the mountain of Caribatan they found many canoes with a great many people who were coming from the place whither the Christians were going, to see the Admiral and the Christians. And he considered it certain that if he could be in that harbour for the feast of the Nativity that all the people would come from that island, which he already estimated to be larger than England, to see the Christians. The canoes returned with the Christians to the village, which, he says, they affirm to be larger and with better arranged streets than any others passed and discovered up to that time. This village, he says, is almost three leagues to the south-east of the Punta Santa. And as the canoes go rapidly with oars they went ahead to make known to the Cacique that the Christians were coming. Up to that time the Admiral had not been able to understand whether by Cacique they meant King or Governor. They also have another word for a great personage, that is to say Nitayno, and he did not know whether it meant a Hidalgo, Governor or Judge. Finally the Cacique came to them, and all the people of the village consisting of more than two thousand men, united in the plaza, which was very clean. This King paid great honours to the people from the ships and each one of the people brought them something to eat and to drink. Then the King gave to each one of them some cotton cloths such as the women wear, and parrots for the Admiral, and certain pieces of gold: the people also gave the sailors some of the same cloths and other things from their houses for the little things which they gave them, which from the manner in which they received them, it appeared they esteemed as reliques. In the afternoon when they wished to take leave the King begged them to wait until another day and all the people did the same; but having seen that they had determined to come away, many of the Indians came with them carrying on their shoulders the things which the Cacique and the others had given them as far as the boats, which remained at the entrance of the river.


Before sunrise he weighed the anchors, with a land breeze. Among the many Indians who had come to the ship yesterday and had given them indications of there being gold on that island and had named the places where it was found, he saw one, who, it appears was better disposed and more affectionate, or who spoke to him with more pleasure. The Admiral flattered him, begging him to go away with him to show him the mines of gold. This Indian brought with him another, a companion or relative and among the other places which they named where gold was found, they told of Cipango, which they call Civao, and there they say there is a great quantity of gold, and that the Cacique carries banners of hammered gold, but that is a great distance from the east. The Admiral here says these words to the Sovereigns: "Your Highnesses may believe that in all the world there cannot be better or more quiet people. Your Highnesses must be greatly pleased, because they will soon make them Christians and will teach them the good customs of their realms, because there cannot be a better people or country: and the people are so numerous and the country so great that I do not yet know how to write it, because I have spoken in the superlative degree of the people and the country of Juana, which they call Cuba; but there is as much difference between the people of this country and the people of Juana as there is between day and night. Neither do I believe that any other person who saw this, would have done or said less than I have said, and I say that it is true that the things here are marvelous and so also are the great villages of this island of Espanola, as I have named it and which they call Bohio. And all the people behave in a remarkably friendly manner and speak softly, not like the other Indians who appear to threaten when they speak, and the men and women are of good stature and are not black. It is true that they all paint themselves, some black and others in other colours, and mostly red. I have learned that they do it on account of the sun, which then does not injure them as much. And the houses and settlements are very beautiful and they are all governed by a Lord or Judge, and all obey him so that it is a marvel. And all these Lords speak very few words and have very fine manners, and their commands are given usually by a sign of the hand, and then it is understood in a wonderful manner." All these are the words of the Admiral.

Whoever is obliged to enter the sea of Santo Tome must put in a good league above the mouth of the entrance toward a small flat island which the Admiral named La Amiga which is in the middle of it, turning the prow toward it. And after he arrives within the "oto" of a stone from it, must go to the west, and leave the island to the east and must keep near it and not go to the other side, because there is a very large reef to the west, and also in the sea outside of it there are three shoals, and this reef reaches within a lombard shot of La Amiga: and he will pass in the middle and will find at the most shallow place seven fathoms of water with gravel underneath, and inside he will find a harbour for all the ships in the world where they can remain without cables. There is another reef and more shoals which extend from the east toward the said Island of Amiga and they are very large and extend far out into the sea and reach almost within two leagues of the cape; but it appeared that there was an entrance between them at a distance of two lombard shots from La Amiga, and at the foot of Monte Caribatan on its west side, there is a very good and large harbour.


Sailing in a light wind yesterday from the sea of Santo Tome to the Punta Santa, from which be was a league's distance at the passing of the first quarter, which would be at eleven o'clock at night, he decided to lie down to sleep because he had not slept for two days and one night. As there was a calm, the sailor who was steering the ship decided to go away and sleep and left the steering to a young ship's boy, a thing which the Admiral had always expressly prohibited in all the voyage, whether there was a wind or a calm: that is to say that the ships should not be steered by young boys. The Admiral felt secure from banks and rocks because on Sunday when he had sent the boats to that King, they had passed a good three leagues and a half to the east of the said Punta Santa and the sailors had seen all the coast and the shoals which extend from the said Punta Santa a good three leagues to the east-south-east and they saw where they could pass, which he had not done before on all this voyage. Our Lord willed that at twelve o'clock at night, as the crew had seen the Admiral lie down and repose and they also saw that there was a dead calm and the sea was as in a porringer {bowl}, they all lay down to sleep and left the steering in the hands of that boy, and the currents which were flowing carried the ship upon one of the banks. Although it was night they made such a noise that they were seen and heard at a good league's distance, and the ship went upon the bank so quietly that it was hardly felt. The boy who felt the helm catch and heard the noise of the sea, cried out, upon which the Admiral came out and was so quick that no one had yet felt that they were aground. Then the master of the ship who was the guard, came out: and the Admiral told them to launch the small vessel which they were carrying at the stern, and to take an anchor and cast it at the stern: and the master with many others jumped into the small vessel and the Admiral thought that they would do what he had told them: but they thought only of flying to the caravel which was a half league to the windward. The people on the caravel would not receive them, which was right, and on this account they returned to the ship, hut first the boat from the caravel reached it. When the Admiral saw that they were fleeing and they were his people, and that the waters were falling and that the ship was athwart in the sea, not seeing any other remedy, he ordered the mast cut and the ship lightened as much as they were able, to see if they could not float her; but as the waters were yet falling, and as the ship settled more and more to one side in the water, although there was very little or no sea, he could not save her. Then the seams opened but the ship remained whole. The Admiral went to the caravel to place the people from his ship in safety, and as there was a light breeze flowing from the land and also as the night was not yet much advanced, and he did not know how far the banks extended, he beat about, a la corda, until it was day and then went to the ship inside the bank. First he had sent the small vessel to land with Diego de Arana, of Cordova, Alguacil of the fleet, and Pedro Gutierrez, "repostero" of the Royal House, to inform the King who had sent on Saturday to invite and beg him to go with his ships to his harbour. The village of this King was about a league and a half beyond the said bank: and they say that the King wept when he heard of the disaster and sent all his people from the village with many large canoes to unload the ship: and so it was done and everything was unloaded from the decks of the ship in a very brief space of time, such was the great haste and diligence which that King displayed. And he in person with his brothers and relatives showed great assiduity both in the matter of unloading the ship and guarding what was thrown on land that everything might be in security.

From time to time he sent one of his relatives weeping to the Admiral to console him, saying that he must not feel troubled or annoyed, and that he would give him whatever he possessed. The Admiral certifies to the Sovereigns that in no part of Castile could things be placed in such safety without the loss of so much as a leather strap. The King ordered everything placed near the houses while some houses which he wished to give up were vacated, where everything could be stored and guarded. He ordered armed men placed around everything to watch all night. "He with all the people in the village wept a great deal (says the Admiral): they are an affectionate people and free from avarice and agreeable in everything and I certify to your Highnesses that in all the world I do not believe there is a better people or a better country: they love their neighbours as themselves and they have the softest and gentlest speech in the world and are always laughing. They go naked, men and women, as their mothers gave them birth. But your Highnesses may believe that they have very good customs among themselves and the King maintains a most wonderful state, and everything takes place in such an appropriate and well-ordered manner that it is a pleasure to see it all: and they have good memories, and wish to see everything and they ask what it is and for what purpose." The Admiral says all this as above.


To-day at sunrise the King of that country came to the caravel Niña, where the Admiral was, and almost crying told him not to feel bad because he would give him whatever he had, and that he had given two very large houses to the Christians who were on land and that he would give them more if it was necessary and as many canoes as would be needed to load and unload the ship and place the cargo on land, with as many people as he desired: and that he had done so yesterday without even a particle of bread being taken or any other thing: "They are so faithful (says the Admiral) and so little covetous of the property of others and in this respect that King was more just than all the others." While the Admiral was talking with him, another canoe came from another place bringing certain pieces of gold, which the Indians wished to give for a hawk's bell because they did not desire anything else as much as hawks' bells The canoe had not yet reached the side of the ship when they called and showed the pieces of gold, saying chuq chuq for hawks' bells, as they are in a likely state to become crazy for them. After having seen this the Indians on these canoes which were from the other places, in leaving, called to the Admiral and begged him to order a hawk's bell kept for them until the next day, for which they would bring four pieces of gold as large as the hand. The Admiral was pleased to hear this and then a sailor who came from land told the Admiral that the pieces of gold which the Christians who were on land were trading for nothing, were wonderful: for a leather strap they gave pieces which would he worth more than two castellanos, and that it was nothing then to what it would be at the end of a month. The King was delighted to see the Admiral pleased and he understood that he desired a great deal of gold and he told him by signs that he knew where there was a great amount of it near there, and that he must be of good cheer for he would give him as much gold as he wished. And the Admiral says that he gave him an account of it and in particular told him that they have it in Cipango which they call Civao, in such quantity that they do not value it at all and that they would bring it there, although also in the island of Espanola which they call Bohio and in that province of Caribata there is much more of it. The King ate on the caravel with the Admiral and afterward went with him on land where he paid the Admiral great honours, and gave him a repast of two or three kinds of "ajes" with shrimps, game and other viands which they had and their bread which they called cazavi. Then he took him to see some clumps of trees near the houses, and fully a thousand persons, all naked, went with him. The King was already wearing a shirt and a pair of gloves which the Admiral had given him, and he rejoiced more over the gloves than anything which had been given him. By his manner of eating, his honesty and his exquisite cleanliness, he showed himself to be of good birth. After having eaten, as they remained at the table some time, they brought certain herbs with which they rubbed their hands a great deal. The Admiral believed they did it to soften them, and they gave him water for his hands. After they had finished eating they took the Admiral to the beach, and he sent for a Turkish bow and a handful of arrows, and the Admiral made a man from among his company who was skilful in the exercise, shoot the arrows. And as the King did not know what arms are, as they do not possess them or use them, it appeared to him to be a great thing. Although he {the Admiral} says that the beginning was from a conversation they had about the people of Caniba, whom they call Caribs {Caribes}, who come to take them and who carry bows and arrows without iron, as in all those countries they have no knowledge of iron and of steel nor of any other metal, except of gold and copper, although the Admiral had seen but little copper. The Admiral told him by signs that the Sovereigns of Castile would order the Caribs destroyed, and that they would order them all brought to him with the hands tied. The Admiral ordered a lombard and a musket to be fired and seeing the effect of their force and what they penetrated, the King marvelled greatly. And when his people heard the shots they all fell to the ground. They brought the Admiral a large mask, which had great pieces of gold in the ears and eyes and in other places, which the King himself gave him, and which with other jewels of gold he placed on the head and around the neck of the Admiral: and they also gave a great deal to the other Christians who were with the Admiral. The Admiral derived great pleasure and consolation from these things which he saw and it tempered the trouble and affliction he had experienced and was feeling in losing the ship and he recognised that our Lord had caused him to run aground at that place that he might make a settlement there. And (he says), so many things came to hand here, that the disaster was really nothing other than a great good fortune. Because it is certain (he says) that if I had not run aground here, I should have kept out to sea without anchoring at this place, because it is situated here inside a large bay and in the bay there are two or three banks of shoals. Neither would I have left people here on this voyage, and even if I had desired to leave them I could not have given them a good enough outfit, nor enough ammunition and provisions and accoutrements for a fortress. And it is quite true that many of the people who are here have begged me that I would give them permission to remain. Now I have ordered a tower and fortress constructed and all in a very good manner and a large cellar, not that I believe this necessary with these people, because I consider it certain that with these people I have with me, I could subjugate all this island, which I believe is larger than Portugal and has double the people: but they are naked and without arms and cowardly beyond cure. But it is not that this tower should be built and it must be as it must be, being so far from your Highnesses and that they may know the people of your Highnesses and what they can do that they may obey them with love and fear, and thus they have blocks with which to construct the fortress and provisions of bread and wine for more than a year, and seeds for sowing, and the ship's boat and a calker, and a carpenter, and a gunner and a cooper and among them many men who desire greatly for the services of your Highnesses and to cause me pleasure, to learn of the mine where the gold is found. So that everything has happened much to the purpose that this beginning may be made. And more than all this when the ship ran aground it went so softly that it was hardly felt and there was neither wave nor wind." The Admiral says all this. And he further adds to show that it was a great good fortune and the determined will of God that the ship should run aground there that people might be left there,--that had it not been for the treachery of the Master and of the people, who were all or most of them from his country, in not wishing to cast the anchor at the stern to draw the ship off as the Admiral ordered them to do, that the ship would have been saved; and thus the country would not have been known (he says) as it was known during those days they remained there and as it will be known by the people he intended leaving there, as he was sailing all the time with the intention of making discoveries and not remaining anywhere more than a day unless it was because there was no wind, because he says the ship was very heavy and not fitted for the purpose of discovery. And the taking of such a ship he says was due to the people of Palos, who did not fulfil what the King and Queen had promised him, that is that he should he given ships suitable for that journey, and they did not do it. The Admiral concludes by saying that of all there was in the ship not a leather strap was lost, nor a board nor a nail, because the ship remained as sound as when she started except that she was chopped and split some in order to take out the butts and all the merchandise: and they placed all these on land, well guarded, as has been told. And he says that he hopes in God when he returns from Castile, as he intends, he will find a tun of gold for which those people he is to leave will have traded, and that they will have found the Mine of gold and the spices, and all that in such a quantity that before three years the Sovereigns will undertake and prepare to go and conquer the Holy Sepulchre (casa santa). "because (he says) I thus protested to your Highnesses that all the profit of this, my undertaking, should be spent in the conquest of Jerusalem, and your Highnesses smiled and said that it was pleasing to them, and that even without this, they had the inclination to do it." These are the words of the Admiral.


At sunrise the King of that country came to the caravel and told the Admiral that he had sent for gold and that he wished to cover him all over with gold before he went away, and he begged him not to go away before. And the King ate with the Admiral, and a brother of his and another very near relative, which two told the Admiral that they wished to go to Castile with him. At this time news came that the caravel Pinta was in a river at the head of that island. Then the Cacique, who loved the Admiral so much it was wonderful, sent a canoe there in which the Admiral despatched a sailor. The Admiral was already preparing with as much haste as possible for the return to Castile.


In order to hasten the finishing of the construction of the fortress and to establish order among the people who were to remain there, the Admiral went on land, and it seemed to him that the King had seen him when he was going in the boat. The King entered his house quickly, dissembling, and sent one of his brothers to receive the Admiral, who conducted him to one of the houses which had been given to the Christians, and which was the largest and best in that village. In this house they had prepared a raised platform of the inner bark of the palm tree where they made the Admiral sit down. Then the brother sent one of his pages to say to the King that the Admiral was there, as though the King did not know that he had come, although the Admiral believed that he was dissembling to pay him much more honour. When the page told him, the Cacique (he says) came running to the Admiral and placed around his neck a large plate of gold which he was carrying in his hand. He remained there with the Admiral until afternoon consulting as to what he was to do.


At sunrise a nephew of the King, a very young boy, of good judgment and courage as the Admiral says came to the ship: and as the Admiral always endeavoured to learn where the gold was found, he questioned each one, as he already understood something by signs. And in that manner, that boy told him that at a distance of four days journeys to the east there was an island which was called Guarionex and others which they called Macorix and Mayonic and Fuima and Cibao and Coroay, in which there was an infinite quantity of gold. The Admiral wrote down these names and a brother of the King having learned that the nephew had told this quarrelled with him, according to what the Admiral understood. Also the Admiral had understood at other times that the King was trying to keep him in ignorance of the places where the gold was found and gathered, that he might not go to trade for it and buy it elsewhere. But there is so much of it and in so many places on this island of Espanola itself (says the Admiral) that it is wonderful. Night having already come, the King sent a large mask of gold and also sent to beg of the Admiral a hand-basin and a pitcher. The Admiral believed that he asked them of him so as to order others made, and therefore he sent them to him.


The Admiral went on land to eat, and arrived at the time when five Kings had come who were subjects of this King who was called Guacanagari. They all wore their crowns and were in very good state, so that the Admiral says to the Sovereigns that their Highnesses would take pleasure in seeing their manners. On reaching land, the King came to receive the Admiral and took him by the arms and conducted him to the same house where he went yesterday, where he had a raised platform and chairs in which the Admiral sat down: and then he took off his crown from his own head and placed it upon the Admiral's head, and the Admiral took from around his neck a collar of good blood-stones and very beautiful beads of fine colours, which appeared very good in all parts and placed it upon the King: and he took off a cloak of fine scarlet cloth which he had put on that day, and clothed the King with it: and he sent for some coloured buskins which he made him put on, and placed upon his finger a large silver ring because the Admiral had been told that this king had seen a silver ring which belonged to a sailor and had made many endeavours to obtain it. The King was very joyful and contented and two of those Kings who were with him, came to where the Admiral was with Guarionex and brought the Admiral two large gold plaques, each bringing one. At this time an Indian arrived saying that two days ago he had left the caravel Pinta to the east in a harbour. The Admiral returned to the caravel and Vicente Anos, the captain, said that he had seen rhubarb and that it was on the island of Amiga, which is at the entrance of the sea of Santo Tome, which is six leagues from there and that he had recognised the leaves and root. They say that rhubarb sends small branches out of the ground and bears fruits which appear like green mulberries almost dry and the stalk which grows from the root is as yellow and as fine as the best colour which can be found to paint, and under the ground the root grows like a large pear.


This day he occupied himself in ordering water and wood taken in readiness for the departure for Spain, in order to give speedy information to the Sovereigns, that they might send ships to discover what remained to be discovered: because the affair already appeared so great and of such importance that it is wonderful (said the Admiral) and he says that he would have liked not to depart until he had seen all that land which extends toward the east, and had gone all along the coast in order to learn also (he says) the distance from Castile to that country so as to bring there herds of cattle and other things. But as there remained to him only one ship, it did not appear a reasonable thing to expose himself to the dangers which might occur in making discoveries. And he complained that all that injury and inconvenience arose from the separation of the caravel Pinta.


At midnight he despatched the boat to the island of Amiga to bring the rhubarb. It returned at vespers with a hamper of it. They did not bring more because they did not carry a spade to dig it. The Admiral carried what they brought to the Sovereigns as a specimen. The King of that country, he says, had sent many canoes for gold. The sailor, who had been sent with a canoe to learn of the Pinta returned, and they did not find her. That sailor said that at a distance of twenty leagues from there he had seen a king who wore upon his head two large plaques of gold, and when the Indians in the canoe spoke to him he took them off, and he says he saw also other persons with a great deal of gold. The Admiral believed that the King Guacanagari must have prohibited every one from selling gold to the Christians, so that it might all pass through his hands. But he had learned the places, as he said the day before yesterday, where they had gold in such a quantity that no price was attached to it. He had also learned where there were spices {as the Admiral says} of which there is a great quantity and it is worth more than pepper and "manegueta." He charged those persons who were to remain there to obtain as much as they could.


He went on land in the morning to take leave of the King Guacanagari and to depart in the name of the Lord: and he gave the King one of his shirts and showed him the force of the lombards and their effect. For this purpose he ordered one loaded and fired at the side of the ship which was aground. This happened as the result of a conversation in regard to the Caribs, with whom they were at war, and the King saw how far the lombard shot reached, and how it passed through the side of the ship and that the shot went a long way on the sea. He also had the people from the ships make a slight skirmish with their arms, telling the Cacique not to fear the cannibals if they should come. The Admiral says he did all this that the King might consider the Christians he was leaving as friends and also that he might fear them. The King conducted the Admiral and the other Christians who were with him to the house where he was lodged to eat with him. The Admiral many times charged Diego de Arana and Pedro Gutierrez and Rodrigo Escovedo, whom he was leaving as his joint lieutenants over the people who were to remain there to see that everything was well ruled and governed for the service of God and their Highnesses. The Cacique manifested much love for the Admiral and great feeling over his departure, especially when he saw them go to embark. A favourite of that King told the Admiral that he had ordered a statue of pure gold made as large as the Admiral himself and that at the end of ten days they were to bring it to him The Admiral embarked with the intention of departing then, but the wind would not allow him to do so.

He left on that island of Espanola, which the Indians say they called Bohio, thirty-nine men in the fortress, whom he says were very friendly with that King Guacanagari; and in command of these men as his lieutenants, Diego de Arana, native of Cordova and Pedro Gutierrez, "repostero de estrado" of the King, "criado del despensero mayor," and Rodrigo de Escovedo, native of Segovia, nephew of friar Rodrigo Perez, giving them all the powers which he had received from the Sovereigns. He left them all the merchandise which the Sovereigns had ordered purchased for trading, of which there was a large quantity, so that they might trade and barter it for gold, together with everything which the foundered ship carried. He also left them biscuit sufficient for a year and wine and much artillery: and the ship's boat in order that they, as they were most of them sailors, could go to discover the mine of gold when they should see that the time was favourable: so that the Admiral on his return might find much gold and a place to found a village that harbour not being to his liking: especially as the gold which was brought there he says came from the east and the more they went to the east, so much nearer were they to Spain. He also left them seeds for sowing and his officials, escribano and alguacil, and among the others a ship's carpenter and calker, and a good gunner who knows a great deal about engines, and a cooper and a physician and a tailor, and all, he says, are seamen.


He did not leave to-day because at night he says that thee of the Indians he had taken from the islands and who had remained on land, came and told him that the other Indians and their wives were coming at sunrise. The sea was also somewhat changed and the boat could not go to land. He determined to depart the next day, the grace of God permitting. He said that if he had had the caravel Pinta with him be would have been certain to obtain a cask of gold, because he would have dared to follow the coasts of these islands, which he did not dare to do because of being alone: as he did not wish anything inconvenient to happen to him and prevent his returning to Castile and informing the Sovereigns of all the things which he had found. And if he were certain that the caravel Pinta would reach Spain in safety with that Martin Alonso Pinzon, he said that he would not relinquish doing what he desired. But as he did not know about it, and as Pinzon in going would be able to tell falsehoods to the Sovereigns, to avoid the punishment which he merited for doing so much harm in going away without permission and preventing all the good which might have been done and learned at that time, the Admiral says he felt confident that our Lord would give him good weather and everything would be remedied.


At sunrise he weighed the anchors in a light wind and the boat went ahead on a course to the north-west to get outside of the bank, by another channel wider than that by which he entered. This channel and others are very suitable to go to the Villa de la Navidad and in all that channel the least depth was three fathoms up to nine fathoms, and these two channels extended from north-west to south-east along the banks which extend from Cabo Santo to Cabo de Sierpe, which is more than six leagues and out into the sea a good three leagues, and beyond Cabo Santo a good three: and a league beyond Cabo Santo the water is not more than eight fathoms in depth and inside the said cape to the east there are many shoals and channels to enter among them, and all that coast extends north-west and south-east and is all a beach, and the land is very level for a distance of four leagues island. Then there are very high mountains, and it is all well settled with large villages and good people, as had been shown to the Christians. He navigated thus to the east toward a very high mountain, which appears like an island but is not, because it connects with some very low land, which is shaped like a very beautiful "pavillion." He named this mountain Monte-Cristi and it is exactly east of Cabo Santo at a distance of about eighteen leagues. That day as there was a very light wind he was only able to arrive within six leagues of Monte-Cristi. He found four very low small sandy islets with a reef which projected well out to the north-west and extended well to the south-east. Inside there is a large gulf which extends from the said mountain to the south-east a good twenty leagues, which must all be very shallow and have many banks: and inside the gulf along all that coast there are many rivers which are not navigable although that sailor whom the Admiral sent with the canoe to learn news of the Pinta, said that he saw a river in which ships could enter. The Admiral anchored there at a distance of six leagues from Monte-Cristi in nineteen fathoms of water, having occasionally put out to sea to avoid the many shoals and banks which were found there, and he remained there all night. The Admiral says that whoever is obliged to go to the Villa de la Navidad must take his bearing from Monte-Cristi at a distance of two leagues on the sea, etc., but as the land is already known and that lying near there, he does not give all the details here. He concludes that Cipango was on that island and that there is a great deal of gold and a great quantity of spices and mastic and rhubarb.


As the sun was about to rise he made sail with a land breeze. Then it blew from the east and he saw that to the south-south-east of Monte-Cristi, between it and a small island, there appeared to be a good harbour to anchor this night and he took the course to the east-south-east and then to the south-south-east to within six leagues of the mountain: and having gone the six leagues he found the water seventeen fathoms in depth and very clear, and he went three leagues thus with the same depth. Then it was only twelve fathoms as far as the head of the mountain and beyond the head of the mountain at a distance of a league he found it nine, and clear, the bottom being all fine sand. He followed the route thus until he entered between the mountain and the small island where he found a depth of three and one-half fathoms at low tide, a very remarkable harbour where he anchored. He went with the boat to the small island where he found fire and signs that fishermen had been there. He saw there many stones tinted in colours, or a quarry of such stones, very beautiful and formed naturally he says, so that they would be suitable for church edifices and other royal works, being like those he found on the island of San Salvador. He also found on this small island many trunks of mastic trees. He says that this Monte-Cristi is very beautiful and high and accessible, and of very pretty shape: and all the country near it is low, forming a very pretty field, and it is so high that on seeing it from a distance it appears like an island which does not communicate with any land. Beyond the said mountain to the east at a distance of twenty-four miles he saw a cape which he called Cabo del Becerro: from this cape as far as the said mountain for a distance of two leagues a line of shoals appears in the sea, although it seemed to him that there were channels between them by which one could enter: but it is necessary to try it in the day-time and the boat must first make soundings. To the east from the said mountain toward the Cape of Becerro the four leagues are all a beach and the land is very low and beautiful, and the other is all a very high land with large mountains cultivated and beautiful: and a chain of mountains extends inland from the north-east to the south-east, the most beautiful that he had seen, as it appears exactly like the sierra of Cordova. Other very high mountains also appear very far toward the south and south-east and very large valleys very green and beautiful, and many rivers of water. All this is in such quantity and so pleasant that the Admiral said he did not believe he exaggerated it by the thousandth part. Then he saw to the east of the said mountain a country which appeared like another mountain, similar to Monte-Cristi in size and beauty. Then in the quarter of the east to the north-east the land is not as high, and must be about one hundred miles in extent.


That harbour is sheltered from all the winds except the north and north-west winds, and he says that they prevail very little in that country and refuge can be obtained from even these winds behind the small island: the water is from three to four fathoms in depth. After sunrise he made sail to go forward along the coast all of which extends to the east, but it is necessary to look out for many reefs of rock and sand which are on the said coast. It is true that inside them there are good harbours and good entrances through their channels. After mid-day the wind blew strongly from the east and he ordered a sailor to ascend to the top of the mast to look for shoals, and he saw the caravel Pinta coming from the east and she came up to the Admiral: and as there was no place to anchor on account of shallow water, the Admiral returned to Monte-Cristi, going back ten leagues which he had sailed, and the Pinta went with him. Martin Alonso Pinzon came to the caravel Niña upon which was the Admiral, to excuse himself, saying that he had separated from him against his will, and giving reasons for it: but the Admiral says that they were all false and that Martin Alonso Pinzon had acted with much pride and covetousness that night when he went away and left him: and that he did not know says the Admiral from whence had come the haughty actions and dishonesty he had shown toward himself on that voyage. But the Admiral wished to dissemble these actions in order not to give place to the bad deeds of Satan who wished to hinder that voyage, as he had done up to that time. An Indian from among those whom the Admiral had recommended to Martin Alonso Pinzon with others who were on his caravel, had told Pinzon that on an island which was called Baneque there was a great deal of gold, and as his ship was light and a good sailer, he wished to withdraw and go by himself, leaving the Admiral. But the Admiral wished to delay and coast along the island of Juana and the island of Espanola, since it was all on a course from the east. After Martin Alonso went to the island of Baneque he says that he found no gold, and he came to the coast of Espanola because of information from other Indians who told him that there was on that island of Espanola which the Indians called Bohio, a great quantity of gold and many mines: and through this cause he arrived near the Villa de la Navidad, within fifteen leagues, and it was then more than twenty days ago. From this it appeared that the news given by the Indians was true on account of which the King Guacanagari sent the canoe, when the Admiral despatched a sailor, and that the Niña must have been gone when the canoe arrived. And the Admiral says here that the caravel traded for a great deal of gold, and that for the end of a strap they were given good pieces of gold the size of two fingers, and at times as large as the hand, and Martin Alonso took the half and divided the other half among his people. The Admiral says further to the Sovereigns: "So that, Lords and Princes I know that our Lord miraculously ordered that the ship should remain there because it was the best place on all the island to make the settlement and is near to the mines of gold." He also says that he learned that behind the island of Juana to the south, there is another large island on which there is a larger quantity of gold than there is on this one, so that they find pieces of it larger than beans and on the island of Espanola pieces of gold were taken from the mines as large as kernels of wheat. That island, he says, was called Yamaye. He also says that he learned that yonder toward the east there was an island where there were only women, and he says that he learned this from many persons. And that the island of Espanola or the other island of Yamaye were near the mainland distant ten days' journeys in canoes which might be sixty or seventy leagues, and that the people were clothed there.


This day he caused the caravel, which was leaking, to be pumped out and calked and the sailors went on land to bring wood, and he says that they found a great quantity of mastic and aloes.


On account of the strong east and south-east wind which blew he did not start this day, so he ordered the caravel supplied with water and wood and everything necessary for all the voyage; because, although he was desirous of coasting all along the coast of Espanola which he could have done going on his course, yet as those he had placed on the caravels for captains were brothers, that is to say Martin Alonso Pinzon and Vicente Anes, and those who followed them were haughty and covetous and did not regard the honour which the Admiral had shown them and had not obeyed and did not obey his commands, but rather had done and said many unmerited things in opposition to him, and as Martin Alonso had left him from November 21 to January 6 without cause or reason but from disobedience: and all this the Admiral had suffered in silence, in order to finish his voyage successfully: on account of all this, in order to get out of such bad company, with whom he says it was necessary to dissemble, although they were a disobedient people, and although he says he had with him many good men yet it was not the time to occupy himself with matters of punishment,--he decided to return with the greatest possible haste and not stop longer. He entered the boat and went to the river which is near there, a long league from Monte-Cristi toward the south-south-west, where the sailors were going to take water for the ship, and he found that the sand at the mouth of the river which is very wide and deep, was, as he says, all full of gold in such quantity that it was wonderful, although it was in very small grains. The Admiral believed that in coming down that river it crumbled into small pieces on the way, although he says that in a short space he found many grains as large as lentils: but of the very smallest grains he says there was a great quantity. And as the sea was calm and the salt water entered with the fresh water, he ordered the boat to ascend the river a stone's throw. They filled the barrels from the boat and returning to the caravel they found caught in the hoops of the barrels little pieces of gold and the same in the hoops of the casks The Admiral named the river El Rio del Oro, which is very deep inside the entrance, although the entrance is shallow and the mouth very wide, and it is seventeen leagues from the river to the village of Navidad. There are many other large rivers between; three in especial, which he believed must have much more gold in them than that one, because they are larger although this one is almost as large as the Guadalquivir by Cordova: and from these rivers to the mines of gold it is not twenty a leagues. The Admiral says further that he would not take the said sand which contained so much gold, since their Highnesses had it all in their possession and at the door of their village of La Navidad; but that he wished to come at full speed to bring them the news, and to rid himself of the bad company which he had, and that he had always said they were a disobedient people.


At midnight he raised the sails with the wind south-east and navigated to the east-north-east: he arrived at a point which he called Punta Roja which is exactly to the east of the Monte-Cristi a distance of sixty miles, and in the shelter of this point he anchored in the afternoon, three hours before nightfall. He did not dare to go out from there in the night as there were many reefs, until they were investigated because afterward they would be useful if they had, as they must have, channels, and the water inside is very deep and forms a secure anchorage from all winds. These lands from Monte-Cristi as far as the place where he was anchored are high and smooth lands and are very pretty fields and back of them there are very beautiful mountains which extend from east to west, and are all cultivated and green, so that it is a wonderful thing to see their beauty, and they have many rivers of water. In all this land there are many tortoises, of which the sailors took a great many which came on land to lay their eggs, on Monte-Cristi, and they were very large like a great wooden shield. The day before this when the Admiral was going to the Rio del Oro, he said he saw three sirens which came up very high out of the sea: but they were not as beautiful as they are painted, as in some ways they are formed like a man in the face. He said that at other times he saw some in Guinea on the coast of Manegueta. He says that this night in the name of our Lord he will start on his journey without delaying himself further for any matter, since he had found what he had sought, and as he did not wish to have more trouble with that Martin Alonso until their Highnesses learned the news of the voyage and what he has done. "And then he says I will not suffer the bad deeds of persons without virtue, who, with little respect, presume to carry out their own wills in opposition to those who did them honour."


He started from the place where he had anchored and at sunset he reached a river which he named Rio de Gracia. it is distant three leagues to the south-east. He anchored at its mouth on the eastern side, which is a good place to anchor. On going inside, a bank is found which has but two fathoms of water and is very narrow. Within there is a good sheltered harbour but there are a great many ship-worms: and the caravel Pinta upon which was Martin Alonso, suffered very severely from them there because he says Martin Alonso remained there trading for sixteen days, and they traded for a great quantity of gold, which was what Martin Alonso desired. Martin Alonso, after he learned from the Indians that the Admiral was on the coast of the island of Espanola itself and that he could not avoid him, came to find him. And he says that Martin Monso would have liked to have all the people on the ship swear that he had been there only six days. But he says that his wickedness was so public that he could not hide it. The Admiral says, that Martin Alonso had made rules that half of the gold which was traded for or obtained should be for himself. And when he had to leave that place he took four Indian men and two young girls by force, whom the Admiral ordered given clothing and that they should be returned to their country that they might go to their houses. Which says the Admiral is for the service of your Highnesses, because men and women all belong to your Highnesses on this island especially as well as on the other islands. But here where your Highnesses already have a settlement honour and favour must be shown to the people, since there is so much gold on this island and such good lands and so much spice."


At midnight he went out from the Rio de Gracia with a land breeze, and navigated to the east as far as a cape which he called Belprado, a distance of four leagues: and from there to the south-east is the mountain which he called Monte de Plata, and he says it is a distance of eight leagues. Eighteen leagues from the cape of Belprado to the east, quarter south-east is the cape which is called Angel; and extending from this cape to the Monte de Plata there is a gulf and the best and most beautiful countries in the world, all high and beautiful fields, which extend a long distance inland, and beyond, there is a chain of mountains which extend from east to west, very high and beautiful; and at the foot of the mountain there is a very good harbour, and it is fourteen fathoms deep at the entrance and this mountain is very high and beautiful, and it is all well populated, and the Admiral believed it must have contained good rivers and much gold. Four leagues from the cape Angel to the east, quarter south-east there is a point which he named Hierro; and four leagues farther in the same direction there is a point which he named Punta Seca; and from there six leagues in the same direction is the Cape which he called Redondo; and from there to the east is the Cabo Frances and in this cape on the east there is a large bay but it did not appear to him to have anchorage. A league from there is the Cabo del Buen Tiempo: a long league from here to the south quarter south-east there is a cape which he called Tajado; toward the south from this cape he saw another cape and it appeared to him to be a distance of fifteen leagues. He made great head way to-day because the winds and the currents were favourable to him. He did not dare to anchor for fear of the shoals, and therefore he lay off and on all night.


At the quarter of the dawn he navigated to the east with a fresh wind, and went in that way all day and made twenty miles, and in two hours after that he went about twenty-four miles. From there he saw land to the south, and he went toward it and it was at a distance of about forty-eight miles and he says that after having made the ship secure he went this night twenty-eight miles to the north-north-east. When he saw the land he named a cape which he saw the Cabo de Padre e Hijo, because at the eastern point it has two small rocky points, one larger than the other. Then two leagues to the east he saw a large and very beautiful inlet between two large mountains, and he saw that it was a very large harbour, good and with a very fair entrance; but as it was very early in the morning and in order not to lose time because for the greater part of the time the wind there blows from the east and one is then carried north-north-west, he would not delay longer. He continued his course to the east as far as a very high and beautiful cape all of jagged rock, which he named Cabo del Enamorado {Lover's Cape}; this cape was thirty-two miles to the east of that harbour, which he named Puerto Sacro; and on reaching this cape he discovered another much more beautiful and higher and more rounding, all of rock like the Cabo de San Vicente in Portugal, and it was twelve miles to the east of the Enamorado. After he arrived off Enamorado he saw that there was a very large bay between it and the other cape which was three leagues wide, and in the middle of it an exceedingly small island. It is quite deep from the entrance as far as the land. He anchored there in twelve fathoms of water and sent the boat on land for water and to see if they could have speech with the people, but they all fled. He anchored to see also if all that land was one with Espanola; and what he called a gulf he suspected might be another island by itself. He was astonished to find that the island of Espanola was so large.


He did not go out of this harbour on account of there not being a breeze from land so he could get out. He would have liked to have gone out in order to go to another better harbour, because that harbour was somewhat exposed, and because he wished to observe the conjunction of the moon with the sun which he expected to take place the 17th of this month, and the opposition of the moon with Jupiter and conjunction with Mercury, and the sun in opposition with Jupiter, which is the cause of great winds. He sent the boat to land on a beautiful beach that the sailors might get "ajes" to eat and they found certain men with bows and arrows with whom they stopped to talk and they bought two bows and many arrows from them, and begged one of them to go and speak with the Admiral on the caravel: and he came and the Admiral says that he was very much more ugly in the face than the other Indians they had seen: his face was all smutted with charcoal although everywhere the Indians were accustomed to stain themselves different colours. He wore his hair very long and drawn back and tied behind and afterward placed in a "rebecilla" of parrots' feathers, and he was naked like the others. The Admiral judged that he must have been one of the Caribs who eat men and that the gulf which he had seen yesterday divided the land and that this was an island by itself. The Admiral asked him about the Caribs and he made signs to the east, near there, which the Admiral says he saw yesterday before he entered that hay: and the Indian told him that there was a great deal of gold in that country, pointing out the poop of the caravel which was very large and indicating that there were pieces as large as that. He called gold tuab and did not understand it by caona as it was called in the first part of the island nor by nozay as it is called in San Salvador and in the other islands. On Espanola they call copper or a base quality of gold tuob. That Indian told of the island of Matinino and said that it was all settled by women without men and on it there was a great deal of tuob which is gold or copper, and that it is farther to the east of Carib. He also told of the island of Goanin, where there is a great deal of tuob. The Admiral says that he had been told of these islands by many persons some days before. The Admiral says further that in the islands they had passed the inhabitants were in great fear of the Carib and in some they called it Caniba, but in Espanola they called it Carib. And that they must he a very bold people since they go to all the islands and eat the people they are able to capture. He says that he understood some words and by this he says that he learned other things, and that the Indians he had with him understood more, although he found the languages different on account of the great distances of the lands from each other. He ordered that the Indian should be given something to eat and he gave him pieces of green and red cloth and very small glass beads which they like very much, and he sent him to land again and told him to bring gold if he had it which he suspected on account of some little things which he wore. As the boat reached land there were behind the trees fully fifty-five men naked and wearing their hair very long as the women wear it in Castile. On the back part of their heads they wore head-dresses of the plumes of parrots and other birds, and each one carried his bow. The Indian in the boat went on land and made the others lay aside their bows and arrows and a piece of stick which is like a lacuna very heavy, which they carry in place of a sword These Indians then came to the boat and the people from the boat landed and began to buy the bows and arrows and the other arms, because the Admiral had ordered them to do so. Having sold two bows they did not wish to give any more, but rather they prepared to attack the Christians and capture them. They went running to get their bows and arrows where they had laid them aside, and returned with cords in their hands, he says, to bind the Christians. On seeing them come running toward them the Christians, who were ready as the Admiral always advised them to be on guard, attacked the Indians and gave one of them a great cut in the buttock and wounded another on the breast with an arrow. When they saw that they were able to gain little although the Christians were only seven and they were fifty and over, they took to flight until not one remained, one leaving his arrows here and another his bow there. The Admiral says that the Christians would have killed many of them if the pilot who went as captain of them had not prevented it. The Christians then returned to the caravel with their boat and the Admiral having learned of the affair, said that in one way it troubled him and in another it did not, that they might be afraid of the Christians; because without doubt {he says} the people in that place do evil, and he believed they were from the island of Carib and that they eat men: and if the boat which he left with thirty-nine men in the fortress and Villa de la Navidad comes to that place, they may be afraid to do them any harm. And if they did not belong to the Caribs at least they must be inhabitants of lands fronting them and they have the same customs and must be a people free from fear, not like the others on the other islands who are cowards and without arms, except reason {fuera de razon}. The Admiral says all this and that he wished to take some of them. He says that they made many fires according to the custom on that island of Espanola.


He would have liked to send this night to search for the houses of those Indians to take some of them, believing that they were Caribs, and was prevented by the strong east and north-east wind which blew and by the high sea: but when day came, they saw many Indians on land. The Admiral ordered the boat to go to land with people well prepared, and the Indians then all came to the stern of the boat and especially the Indian who the day before had come to the caravel, and to whom the Admiral had given the articles of barter. With this Indian, he says there came a King who had given the said Indian some beads {cuentas} to give to the people in the boat in sign of security and peace. This King with three of his people entered the boat and came to the caravel. The Admiral ordered that honey and biscuit should be given them to eat and he gave the King a red cap and beads and a piece of red cloth and to the others also pieces of cloth, and the King said that to morrow he would bring a gold mask saying that there was a great deal of gold there in Carib and Matinino. Then the Admiral sent them to land well pleased. The Admiral says further, that the caravels were leaking badly at the keel and he complains a great deal of the calkers who calked them very badly in Palos and says that when they saw that the Admiral had noticed their poor work, and desired to constrain them to mend it, they fled. But notwithstanding the great quantity of water which the caravels were taking, he confides in our Lord who brought him there to lead him back in his pity and mercy, for his High Majesty well knew how much controversy he had before he was able to start from Castile as no other was favourable to him except God because He knew his heart, and after God their Highnesses favoured him, and all the others had opposed him without any reason whatever. And he says further as follows: "And they have been the cause that the Royal Crown of your Highnesses does not possess one hundred millions more revenue than it has. since I came to serve them, which is now seven years ago, the 20th day of January this very month and furthermore the accumulation which would have been the natural increase. But that powerful God will remedy everything." These are his words.


He says that he wishes to depart because nothing is gained by remaining here now on account of the disagreements which have taken place. He must mean the trouble with the Indians. He says also that to-day he has learned that all the bulk of the gold was in the vicinity of the Villa de la Navidad of their Highnesses, and that on the island of Carib there was a great deal of copper and in Matinino, although it would be difficult to obtain it in Carib because he says the people eat human flesh: and he says the island of the Caribs appeared from where he was and that he had determined to go there, since it is on his course and to the island of Matinino which he says was all inhabited by women without men, and he says he wished to see both these islands and to take some of the inhabitants. The Admiral sent the boat to land and the king of that country had not come because he says the village was a long way off, but he sent his crown of gold as he had promised and many other men came with cotton and with bread and "ajes," all with their bows and arrows. After they had traded everything with the Indians he says there came four youths to the caravel and they appeared to the Admiral to give such good account of all those islands which lay toward the east on the same course that the Admiral had to follow, that he determined to take them to Castile with him: He says they had no iron or other metal there which could be seen, although in a few days much cannot be learned in regard to a country both on account of the difficulty of the language which he understood only by intuition and as the Indians did not learn what was asked of them in a short time. The bows of these people he says were as large as those of France and England: the arrows are just the same as the spears of the other peoples he had seen up to that time, which are made from the stalks of the canes when they go to seed, which are very straight and a yard and a half or two yards long, and then they put in the end a piece of sharp stick, a palm and a half long, and at the end of this little stick some insert a fish's tooth and most of them place there an herb, and they do not shoot as in other places, but in a certain manner which cannot do much harm. There was a great deal of cotton there, very fine and long and there is a great deal of mastic and it appeared to him that the bows were of yew-trees and that there is gold and copper: also there is a great deal of "aji," which is their pepper, which is worth more than our pepper, and none of the people eat without it as it is found to be very salutary. Fifty caravels can be loaded with it each year on that island of Espanola. He says that he found a great deal of grass in that bay the same as they found in the gulf when they came to make the discovery, on which account be believed there were islands to the east in a straight line from where he began to find them; because he is certain that that grass grows in shallow water near the land and he says that if it is so, these Indies were very near the islands of Canary: and for this reason he believed that they were distant less than four hundred leagues.


Three hours before day he started from the gulf which he called the Golfo de las Flechas, with a land breeze, then with a west wind, turning his prow to the east quarter north-east, to go, he says, to the Isla de Carib where were the people whom all the inhabitants of all those islands and countries feared so greatly; because, he says, they cross all those seas in their canoes without number and he says they eat the men they are able to capture. He says one of the four Indians he had taken yesterday in the Puerto de las Flechas had showed him the course. After having gone, in his opinion, sixty-four miles, the Indians indicated to him that the island lay to the south-east. He wished to follow that course and ordered the sails trimmed, and after they had gone two leagues the wind again blew, very favourably to go to Spain. He noted that the people began to grow sad on account of departing from the straight course, as both caravels were taking a great deal of water and they had no help save in God. He was obliged to leave the course which he believed was taking him to the island and he returned to the direct course for Spain--north-east quarter east, and he went thus until sunset forty-four miles, which are twelve leagues. The Indians told him that on that course he would find the island of Matinino, which he says was inhabited by women without men, and the Admiral says he would much like to carry five or six of them to the Sovereigns. But he doubted whether the Indians knew the course well or not, and he was not able to delay on account of the danger from the water which the caravels were taking. But he says he was certain there was such an island, and that at a certain time of year the men came to these women from the said Isla de Carib, which he says was ten or twelve leagues from them, and if they gave birth to a boy they sent him to the island of the men and if to a girl they kept her with them, The Admiral says that those two islands could not have been distant from where he had started, fifteen or twenty leagues, and he believed they were to the south-east, and that the Indians did not know how to point out the course. After losing from sight the cape which he called San Theramo, on the island of Espanola, which lay sixteen leagues to the west, he went twelve leagues to the east, quarter north-east. Very good weather prevailed.


Yesterday at sunset the wind calmed some. He went during fourteen ampolletas {sand glasses}, which are each a half hour or a little less, until the passing of the first quarter, at the rate of about four miles an hour, which are twenty-eight miles. Then the wind revived, and he went thus during all that quarter which are ten "ampolletas" and then another six until sunrise, at the rate of eight miles per hour, and so he went in all about eighty-four miles which are twenty-one leagues to the north-east quarter east, and until sunset he went more than forty-four miles to the east, which are eleven leagues. Here a pelican came to the caravel and then another, and he saw a great deal of grass of the kind which is in the sea.


He navigated with little wind this night to the east quarter south-east forty miles, which are ten leagues: and then to the south-east quarter east thirty miles, which are seven and one-half leagues, until sunrise. After sunrise he navigated all day with little wind east-north-east and north-east and east more and less, turning the prow sometimes to the north and sometimes to the quarter of the north-east and to the north-north-east, and thus counting both he believed he went about sixty miles, which are fifteen leagues. Little grass appeared in the sea: but he says that yesterday and to-day the sea appeared coagulated with tunny-fish and the Admiral believed that from there they must go to the tunny-fisheries of the Duke of Conil and Caliz. A fishing-bird which is called the frigate-pelican which went around the caravel and then went away to the south-south-east, caused the Admiral to believe that there were some islands near there. And he said that the island of Carib and the island of Matinino and many other islands, lay to the east-south-east of the island of Espanola.


He went this night fifty-six miles to the north, quarter north-east, and sixty-four to the north-east, quarter north. After sunrise he navigated to the north-east with a strong wind east-south-east and then to the quarter of the North, and he went about eighty-four miles which are twenty-one leagues. He saw the sea coagulated with small tunny-fish. There were pelicans, ring-tails, and frigate-pelicans.


The wind calmed this night and at intervals gusts of wind blew, and he went in all about twenty miles to the north-east. After sunset he went about eleven miles to the south-east, then to the north-north-east thirty-six miles which are nine leagues. He saw an infinite number of small tunny-fish. The breezes he says were very soft and sweet the same as in Seville in April or May, and the sea, he says, God be given many thanks, was very calm all the time. Frigate-pelicans and "petrels" and many other birds appeared.


Yesterday after sunset he navigated to the north quarter north-east, with the wind east and north-east. He went about eight miles an hour until midnight which would be fifty-six miles. Then he went to the north-north-east at the rate of eight miles an hour, and this would be in all the night one hundred and four miles, which are twenty-six leagues, to the quarter of the north inclining to the north-east. After sunrise he navigated to the north-north-east with the same east wind, and at times to the quarter of the north-east and he went about eighty-eight miles in eleven hours which was the duration of the day, which make twenty-one leagues, deducting one which he lost because he fell off to the leeward toward the caravel Pinta, to speak her. He found the winds cooler, and he expected, he says, to find them more so each day the more he went to the north, and also because the nights were longer on account of the narrowing of the sphere. Many ring-tails and "petrels" appeared, and other birds; but not as many fish, {he says} because the water was colder. He saw a great deal of grass.


Yesterday after sunset he navigated to the north-north-east with the wind east and veering to the south-east. He went eight miles an hour during five "ampolletas" and during three before the watch commenced, which were eight ampolletas: and thus he must have gone seventy-two miles, which are eighteen leagues. Then he went to the quarter of the north-east to the north six ampolletas which would be another eighteen miles. Then he went during four ampolletas of the second watch to the north-east, six miles an hour, which are three leagues to the north-east. Then until sunrise he went to the east-north-east during eleven ampolletas, six leagues an hour, which are seven leagues. Then to the east-north-east until eleven o'clock in the day, thirty-two miles. And then the wind calmed and be went no farther that day. The Indians swam. They saw ring-tails and a great deal of grass.


This night he experienced many changes in the winds, and having been on the alert for everything and having taken the precautions which good sailors are accustomed to take and must take, he says he went this night to the north-east quarter north about eighty-four miles, which are twenty-one leagues. He waited many times for the caravel Pinta which was sailing badly close to the wind because the mizzen helped her little, the mast not being good: and he says that if her captain, who is Martin Alonso Pinzon, had taken as much pains to provide himself with a good mast in the Indies, where there are so many and such good ones, as he did to separate himself from him thinking to fill the ship with gold, he would have made it good. Many ring-tails appeared and much grass: the sky was all disturbed these days: but it had not rained and the sea was very calm all the time as in a river, many thanks be given to God. After sunrise he went about thirty miles for a certain part of the day straight to the north-east, which are seven leagues and a half, and then the rest of the day he went to the east-north-east another thirty miles, which are seven and a half leagues.


He went during all this night, many changes which the wind made to the north-east considered, about forty-four miles, which were eleven leagues. From sunrise until sunset, he went to the east-north-east about fourteen leagues.


He navigated this night to the east-north-east, a part of the night which were thirteen ampolletas, nine leagues and a half: then he went to the north-north-east another six miles. The sun having risen, during all the day, as the wind calmed, he went to the east-north-east about twenty-eight miles, which are seven leagues. The sailors killed a tunny-fish tonina and a very large shark and he says that they were very necessary to him because he did not then have anything to eat except bread and wine and "ajes" from the Indies.


This night he went to the east, quarter south-east, fifty-six miles, which are fourteen leagues. After sunset he navigated at times to the east-south-east and at times to the south-east; he went about forty miles up to eleven o'clock in the daytime. Then he made another tack and then went "a la relinga," and until night he went toward the north twenty-four miles, which are six leagues.


Yesterday after sunset he went to the north-east and to the north and to the north quarter north-east, anti he went about five miles an hour and in thirteen hours that would be sixty-five miles, which are sixteen and one half leagues. From sunset until mid-day he went toward the north-east twenty-four miles, which are six leagues. and from that time until sunset he went about three leagues to the east-north-east.


All this night he navigated to the east-north-east, and went about thirty-six miles, which are nine leagues. From sunrise until sunset he went to the east-north-east twenty miles, which are five leagues. He found the winds temperate and soft. He saw ring-tails and "petrels" and much grass.


He navigated to the east-north-east and went during the night with the wind south and south-west about thirty-nine miles, which are nine and one half leagues. In all the day he went about eight leagues. The winds were very temperate as they are in Castile in the month of April: the sea was very calm. Fish which they call dorados came to the side of the ship.


During all this night he went seven leagues to the east-north-east. During the day he ran to the south quarter south-east, a distance of thirteen and a half leagues. He saw ring-tails and much grass and many tunny-fish {toninas}.


He navigated this night to the north, quarter north-east a distance of thirty miles and then to the north-east thirty-five miles, which are sixteen {sic} leagues. From sunrise until night he went to the east-north-east thirteen and a half leagues. They saw ring-tails and petrels.


He went this night to the east-north-east a distance of sixteen leagues and a half. During the day he ran on the same course a distance of twenty nine leagues and a quarter. The sea was very calm, thanks be to God.


He went this night to the east-north-east forty miles, which are ten leagues. To-day with the same wind in the stern he ran seven miles an hour: so that in eleven hours he went seventy-seven miles which are nineteen leagues and a quarter. The sea was very calm, thanks to God, and the winds very soft. They saw the sea so thickly covered with grasses that if they had not seen it, they would have feared it was shoals. They saw petrels.


This night going with the wind astern and the sea very calm, thanks be to God, they went about twenty-nine leagues. The North Star appeared to him very high, the same as on the Cape San Vicente: he could not take the latitude with the astrolabe or quadrant, because the waves would not permit it. During the day he navigated on his course to the east-north-east, and went about ten miles an hour, and thus in eleven hours he went twenty-seven leagues.


This night he navigated to the east quarter north-east, part of the time twelve miles an hour and part ten miles, and thus he went one hundred and thirty miles which are thirty-two leagues and a halt. The sky was very tempestuous and rainy, and it was somewhat cold, on which account {he says} he knew that he had not reached the islands of the Azores. After the sun rose, he changed his course and went to the east. He went during all the day seventy-seven miles, which are nineteen leagues and a quarter.


This night he navigated to the east and he went in all fifty-four miles. which are fourteen leagues less a half. During the day he ran ten miles an hour, and so in eleven hours he went one hundred and ten miles, which are twenty-seven leagues and a half. They saw petrels and some little sticks which was a sign that they were near land.


He navigated this night to the east, and went about eleven miles an hour: in thirteen hours of the night he went about one hundred and forty-three miles, which are thirty-five leagues and a quarter. They saw many birds and petrels. During the day he ran fourteen miles an hour, and so be went during that day one hundred and fifty-four miles, which are thirty-eight leagues and a half: so that they went between day and night seventy-four leagues, a little more or less. Vicente Anes said that to-day in the morning the island of Flores lay to the north, and the island of Madeira to the east. Roldan said that the island of Fayal or of San Gregorio lay to the north-north-east, and Puerto Santo to the east. Much grass appeared.


He navigated this night to the east: he went about ten miles an hour, and so in thirteen hours he went one hundred and thirty miles, which are thirty-two leagues and a half: during the day he went eight miles an hour, in eleven hours eighty-eight miles, which are twenty-two leagues. On this morning the Admiral was seventy-five leagues to the south of the island of Flores: and the pilot Pedro Alonso going to the north, passed between Tercera and Santa Maria: and in going to the east. he passed to the windward of the island of Madeira, at a distance of twelve leagues on the north. The sailors saw grass of a different kind than that they had passed, of which there is a great deal in the Azores Islands. Then they saw the same kind they had seen before.


He went this night three miles an hour to the east, for a short time, and then went to the quarter of the south-east: he went during all the night twelve leagues. From sunrise until mid-day he ran twenty-seven miles: then until sunset as many more, which are thirteen leagues to the south-south-east.


For a short time during this night he went about three leagues to the south-south-east, and then to the south, quarter south-east: then to the north-east until ten o'clock in the day a distance of another five leagues, and then until night he went nine leagues to the cast.


After sunset he navigated to the east during all the night a distance of one hundred and thirty miles, which are thirty-two leagues and a half; from sunset until night he went nine miles an hour, and thus he went in eleven hours ninety-nine miles, which are twenty-four leagues and a half and a quarter. On the caravel of the Admiral, Vicente Yanes and the two pilots Sancho Ruiz and Pedro Alonso Nino and Roldan shaped the course and they all passed much beyond the islands of the Azores to the east, according to their charts, and navigating to the north no one of them located the island of Santa Maria, which is the last of all the Azores islands: rather they would be five leagues beyond it and in the vicinity of the island of Madeira or in that of Puerto Santo. But the Admiral reckoned himself much out of his course, finding his position a long way behind that reckoned by the others, because this night the island of Flores lay to the north of him and he was going to the east toward Nafe in Africa, and he passed to the windward of the island of Madeira on the northern side {lacuna} leagues. Thus these pilots according to their reckoning were one hundred and fifty leagues nearer to Castile than the Admiral. He says that the grace of God permitting, as soon as land is seen it will be known who is calculating the surest. He says here also that on the voyage west be went two hundred and sixty-three leagues from the island of Hierro before he saw the first grass.


He went on his course this night twelve miles an hour, and so in all the night he counted thirty-nine leagues, and during all the day he ran sixteen leagues and a half. He saw many birds and on this account he believed he was near land.


He navigated to the east six miles an hour during this night, and went until day a distance of seventy-three miles, which are eighteen leagues and a quarter. Here he began to encounter a high sea and tempest: and if the caravel had not been very good and well equipped, he says he would have feared to be lost. During the day he ran about eleven or twelve leagues with much difficulty and danger.


From sunset until day he experienced great difficulty from the wind and from the high and stormy sea: it lightened toward the north-north-east three times, which he said was a sign that a great tempest was to come from that direction or from the direction contrary to his course. He went under bare masts most of the night: then he raised a little sail and went about fifty-two miles, which are thirteen leagues. This day the wind abated a little; but then it increased, and the sea became terrible and the waves crossed each other which racked the ships. He went about fifty-five miles, which are thirteen and a half leagues.


This night the wind increased and the waves were frightful, coming in contrary directions. They crossed and obstructed the ship which could not go forward or get out from between them and they broke on her: he carried the "papahigo" very low simply that it might keep him above the waves: he went in this way during three hours, and made about twenty miles. The wind and the sea increased greatly and seeing the great danger he began to run before the wind, where the wind took him, because there was no other remedy. Then the caravel Pinta, on which was Martin Alonso, commenced to run also, and disappeared, although all the night the Admiral showed lights and the other ship responded; until it appeared that the latter was not able to do so any longer on account of the force of the tempest, and because she found herself very much out of the course of the Admiral. The Admiral went this night to the north-east, quarter east, a distance of fifty-four miles, which are thirteen leagues. After sunrise the wind became stronger and the cross sea more terrible: he carried only the "papahigo" low, that the ship might get out of the waves which broke across her and not sink. He went on a course to the east-north-east and then on the quarter as far as the north-east: he went about six hours thus and during that time made seven and a half leagues. He ordered that a pilgrimage should be vowed to go to Santa Maria de Guadaloupe and a wax candle weighing five pounds should be carried and that every one should vow that whoever was elected by chance should fulfil the pilgrimage. For this purpose he ordered as many peas brought as there were persons on the ship and one was marked by a knife with the sign of the cross, and they were well shaken and placed in a cap. The first to put in his hand was the Admiral and he took out the pea marked with the sign of the cross, and thus he was selected by chance, and from that time he considered himself obliged to fulfil the vow and make the pilgrimage. Lots were again drawn to make a pilgrimage to Santa Maria de Loreto, which is in the province of Ancona, the land of the Pope, which is the house where Our Lady has performed and performs many great miracles, and chance selected a sailor from the port of Santa Maria, who was called Pedro de Villa, and the Admiral promised to give him money for the expenses of the pilgrimage. He decided that another pilgrim should be sent to watch one night in Santa Clara de Moguer and say a mass, and for this purpose lots were again drawn with the peas marked with a cross, and the choice fell to the Admiral himself. Then the Admiral and all the people made a vow that the first land they reached they would all go in their shirts in procession to pray in a church under the invocation of Our Lady.

Besides the general or common vows each one had made his vow in especial, because none of them expected to escape, all considering themselves lost through the terrible tempest they were experiencing. The danger was increased by the fact that the ship was short of ballast as the load had been lightened by the consumption of the provisions, water and wine: the Admiral had not provided these in sufficient quantity, as he hoped for the favourable weather be experienced among the islands, and proposed to order the ship ballasted on the islands of the Mugeres where he intended to go. The remedy he found for this necessity was when he was able to do it, to fill the pipes which were empty of water and wine with sea-water, and by this means the evil was remedied.

The Admiral here writes the causes which made him fear that our Lord willed that he should perish in that place, and the other causes which gave him hope that God would lead him in safety, in order that such news as he was carrying to the Sovereigns might not perish. It appeared to him that the great desire he had to carry this wonderful news and to show that he had been proved truthful in what he had said and volunteered to discover, caused him to feel the greatest fear that he would not succeed in doing so, and he says that it seemed to him that each gnat could disturb and impede it. He attributed this to his little faith and lack of confidence in the Divine Providence. He was comforted on the other hand by the favours which God had shown him by giving him such a victory, in discovering what he had discovered: and God had fulfilled for him all his desires, as after he had experienced in Castile so many adversities and contradictions, everything had been brought about as he desired. And as before, he had directed his purpose to God and had conducted his enterprise for Him, and he had heard him and given him all that be had asked, it was to be believed that God would fulfil what was commenced and deliver him in safety. Especially since he had delivered him on his departure when be had greater reason to fear on account of the difficulties he had with the sailors and people who were with him, who all with one voice determined to return and to rebel against him, making protestations, and the eternal God gave him strength and courage against them all; and because of many other wonderful things which God had manifested in him and by him on that journey, besides those which their Highnesses knew from the persons of their house. So that he says he ought not to fear the said tempest. But his weakness and anxiety he says would not allow his mind to become reassured. He says moreover, that he also felt great anxiety on account of the two sons whom he had in Cordova at school, as he had left them orphaned of father and mother in a foreign land, and the Sovereigns did not know of the services which he had rendered them on the voyage be had made and the very favourable news he was taking them, on account of which they would be moved to succour his sons. For this reason, and that their Highnesses might know how our Lord had given him the victory in everything which be desired about the Indies, and that they might know there were no tempests in those regions, which be says may be known by the fact that the grass and trees bring up and grow almost into the sea, and that if he should be lost in that tempest the Sovereigns might have information about his voyage, he took a parchment and wrote upon it all that he was able in regard to everything which he had found, earnestly beseeching whomsoever might find it to carry it to the Sovereigns. He enveloped this parchment in a waxed cloth, tied it very securely, and ordered a large wooden barrel brought, and placed the parchment in the barrel without any person knowing what it was, as they all thought it was some act of devotion, and thus he ordered it thrown into the sea. Then with showers and disturbances the wind changed to the west, and he sailed thus before the wind with only the foresail for about five hours; the sea was very rough and he went a distance of about two and a half leagues to the north-east. He had taken down the "papahigo" from the mainsail, for fear that some wave of the sea would carry it all away.


Yesterday after sunset the skies commenced to clear toward the west, and indicated that the wind was about to blow from that direction. He had the bonnet placed on the mainsail: the sea was yet very high, although it was subsiding a little. He went to the east-north-east at the rate of four miles an hour and in the thirteen hours of the night they went thirteen leagues. After sunrise they saw land: it appeared to them at the prow to the east-north-east. Some said that it was the island of Madeira, others that it was the Rock of Cintra in Portugal, near Lisbon. The wind changed and blew ahead from the east-north-east and the sea came very high from the west: the caravel must have been five leagues from land. The Admiral, according to his navigation brought himself to be off the Azores Islands, and believed that the land they saw was one of them: the pilots and sailors believed that they were already off Castile.


All this night he beat against the wind in order to gain the land, which he already recognised as an island, at times going to the north-east, at others to the north-north-east, until sunrise, when he directed his course to the south in order to reach the island which they no longer saw because of the very murky weather, and he saw at the stern another island which was distant about eight leagues. From sunrise until night he tacked about to reach land, in spite of the strong wind and high sea which it raised. At the hour of Salve which is at the beginning of the night, Some saw light to the leeward, and it appeared that it must be the island which they first saw yesterday: and all night he continued beating about and drawing as near as he was able to see if at sunset he could distinguish any of the islands. This night the Admiral rested a little, because he had not slept nor had been able to sleep since Wednesday, and his legs had become very much crippled from being always exposed to the cold and water and from having had little nourishment. At sunrise he navigated to the south-south-west and at night he reached the island and on account of the very dark and cloudy weather he could not recognise what island it was.


Yesterday after sunset he went around the island to see where he could anchor and get tidings: he anchored with one anchor and afterwards lost the anchor: he set sail again and heat about all the night. After sunrise he again approached the northern part of the island and cast anchor where it appeared best to him, and sent the boat to land: and they had speech with the people of the island and learned that it was the island of Santa Maria, one of the Azores; and the inhabitants indicated to them the harbour where they could enter with the caravel and they said they had never seen such a tempest as that which had prevailed during the past fifteen days, and that they wondered how they had escaped: they offered many thanks to God {he says} and rejoiced greatly on account of the news they heard of the Admiral's having discovered the Indies. The Admiral says that his navigation had been very true and that he had steered well, for which many thanks should be given to our Lord, although he made them a little beyond their true situation; but he had considered it sure that he was in the region of the Azores Islands, and that this island was one of them. And he says he pretended to have gone a longer distance to confound the pilots and sailors who steered, and to remain Master of the course to the Indies, as he had done, because no one of them all was certain of his course, so that none could be sure of his course to the Indies.


After sunset three men came to the shore of the island and called. He sent them the boat in which they came to the ship and brought fowls and fresh bread, and it was a Carnival Day: and they brought other things which the captain of the island sent, who was called Juan de Castaneda, saying that he knew the Admiral very well and that he did not come to see him on account of its being night: but that at dawn he would come and bring him more refreshment, and bring with him three men from the caravel who remained there, and that he did not send them back on account of the great pleasure he had with them, hearing about their voyage. The Admiral ordered that the messengers should be paid much honour and ordered beds to be given them in which to sleep that night, because it was late and the village was distant. And as on the Thursday past, when they were in the midst of the anxiety occasioned by the tempest, they made the vow and vows aforesaid, and the vow that on the first land where there was a house of Our Lady they would go in shirts, etc., he decided that half of the people should go to fulfil it at a small house which was near the sea, like a hermitage, and he would go afterward with the other half. Seeing that the country was safe, and confiding in the offers of the Captain and in the peace reigning between Portugal and Castile, he begged the three men to go to the village and send a priest to say a mass for them. Half of the people went in their shirts, in fulfilment of their vow, and being at their prayers, they were attacked by all the villagers on horseback and on foot with the Captain, who captured them all. Then the Admiral remained unsuspectingly until eleven o'clock in the day, expecting the boat, in order to go himself with the other people and fulfil his vow, and seeing that the people did not come, he suspected that they were detained or that the boat was wrecked, because all the island is surrounded by very high rocks. The Admiral could not see this affair, because the hermitage was behind a point. He raised anchor and set sail directly toward the hermitage and he saw many horsemen who alighted and entered the boat armed, and came to the caravel to take the Admiral. The Captain arose in the boat and asked for his personal safety from the Admiral and he said that it was assured to him. But: why was it that he saw none of his people in the boat? And the Admiral added that if he would come and enter the caravel that he would do all that he wished. And the Admiral tried with smooth words to get him to come so that he could take him to recover his people, not believing that he violated faith in giving him security, since he, having offered him peace and security, had broken his promise. He says that as the Captain had a bad purpose he did not trust himself to enter. Having seen that the Captain did not approach the caravel, the Admiral begged him to tell him the cause for his detaining his people, and said that it would annoy the King of Portugal and that in the land of the Sovereigns of Castile the Portuguese receive great honour and they enter it and are as safe as in Lisbon: and that the Sovereigns had given them letters of recommendation for all the Princes and Lords and men in the world, which he would show the Captain if he would approach and that he was their Admiral of the Ocean-sea and Viceroy of the Indies, which now belonged to their Highnesses, the provisions for which, signed with their signatures and sealed with their seals, he would show him and which he did show him at a distance: and that the Sovereigns felt much love and friendship for the King of Portugal and had ordered him to pay all the honour he was able to the ships of Portugal which he might encounter: and that even if he would not give him his people, he would not give up going to Castile, since he had sufficient people to navigate to Seville, and the Captain and his people would be well punished for offering them that insult. Then the Captain and the others replied that they did not know a King and Queen of Castile here, nor their letters, neither were they afraid, and rather they would have them know that it was Portugal,--almost menacing them. When the Admiral heard this he felt great resentment and he says he thought some differences had taken place between the Kingdoms after his departure, and he could not suffer that they should not reply to the Portuguese, which was right.

Then that Captain again rose at a distance he says and told the Admiral to go away with the caravel to the harbour and that all he was doing and had done, the King his Lord had sent him orders to do. The Admiral called on those who were in the caravel to witness this and the Admiral again called to the Captain and to them all and gave them his faith, and promised, by right of his authority, not to descend from or leave the caravel until he had taken a hundred Portuguese to Castile, and had depopulated all the island. And so he anchored again in the harbour where he was first, as the weather and wind were very unfavourable for anything else.


He ordered the ship repaired and the pipes filled with sea-water for ballast, because he was in a very bad harbour and he feared his cables might be cut, and it was so. For this reason he set sail toward the island of San Miguel, although in none of the Azores islands is there a good harbour for the weather which prevailed then, and he had no other safety than to put out to sea.


He started yesterday from that island of Santa Maria for the island of San Miguel to see if he could find a harbour in which to endure such bad weather as prevailed, with a great deal of wind and a high sea and he went until night without being able to see either one land or the other on account of the extreme darkness and obscurity which the wind and sea caused. The Admiral says that it was with little pleasure because he had only three sailors who knew the sea, as the most of those who were there knew nothing of the sea. He beat about all this night in a very great tempest and in great danger and difficulty; and that in which the Lord was merciful to him was that the sea or the waves, only came from one direction, because if there had been a cross-sea as in the past, he would have undergone very serious injury. After sunrise, having found that he did not see the island of San Miguel, he decided to return to Santa Maria to see if he could recover his people and the boat and the cables and anchors he left there.

He says he was astonished at such bad weather as there was in those islands and regions, because in the Indies he navigated all that winter without anchoring and it was good weather all the time, and that, for one hour alone he did not see the sea so that he could not navigate well, and in these islands he had experienced such a serious tempest and the same happened to him on his departure as far as the Canary Islands: but having passed them, he always found the winds and the sea very temperate. In conclusion the Admiral says that the sacred theologians and learned philosophers well said that the earthly Paradise is at the end of the Orient, because it is a most temperate place. So that, those lands which he had now discovered, are {he says} the end of the Orient.


Yesterday he anchored at the island of Santa Maria in the harbour or port where he had first anchored, and then a man came and called from some rocks which were facing them, telling them not to go away from there. Then the boat came with five sailors and two priests and an escribano {notary}. They asked for guarantee of security, and the Admiral having given it, they mounted upon the caravel and as it was night they slept there, and the Admiral paid them what honours he was able. In the morning they required him to show them the authority from the Sovereigns of Castile, in order to prove to them that he had made that voyage by authority of the Sovereigns. The Admiral felt that they did that in order to make it appear that they had not done wrong before, but that they were right, as they had not been able to take the person of the Admiral which they must have intended to get into their hands when, they came armed in the boat; but they saw that the game did not turn out favourably to them and they feared what the Admiral had said and threatened, which he intended to do and believed that he could carry out successfully. Finally in order to obtain the people they had, he was obliged to show them the general letter from the Sovereigns for all the Princes and Lords of High Degree, and the other provisions; and he gave them what he had and they went to land satisfied and then they let all the people go with the boat, from whom he learned that if they had taken the Admiral they would never have allowed him to go free, because the Captain said that the King, his Lord, had commanded him to do as he did.


Yesterday the weather commenced to show signs of becoming better, and he raised the anchors and went around the island in search of a good anchorage where he could take wood and stone for ballast, and he could not find an anchorage until the hour of "completas."


He anchored yesterday in the afternoon to take wood and stone, and as the sea was very high the boat could not reach land and at the passing of the first night watch the wind commenced to blow west and south-west. He ordered the sails raised on account of the great danger there is in those islands from remaining at anchor with a south wind, and a south-west wind easily shifts till it blows south. And having seen that it was good weather to go to Castile, he abandoned his purpose of taking wood and stone and ordered the course steered to the east, and he went until sunrise, which would be six hours and a half, at the rate of about seven miles an hour, which are forty-five miles and a half. From sunrise until sunset he went six miles an hour, which in seven hours was sixty-six miles and with the forty-five and a half travelled in the night, it made one hundred and eleven and a half, and consequently twenty-eight leagues.


Yesterday after sunset he navigated to the east upon his course, five miles an hour: in thirteen hours of this night he went about sixty-five miles which are sixteen leagues and a quarter. From sunrise until sunset he went another sixteen leagues and a half with the sea calm, thanks be to God. A very large bird came to the caravel which appeared to be an eagle.


Yesterday after sunset he navigated on his course to the east, the sea calm, thanks be to God: the most of the night he went about eight miles an hour, which was one hundred miles or twenty-five leagues. After sunrise there was little wind: there were showers, and he went a matter of eight leagues to the east-north-east.


This night and day he went out of his course on account of the contrary winds and the great waves and high sea and he found himself one hundred and twenty-five leagues from the Cape of St. Vincent and eighty from the island of Madeira and one hundred and six from the island of Santa Maria. He was very much troubled with such tempests, now that he was so near the end of his journey.


He went in the same manner this night with diverse winds, to the south and to the south-east and to one side and the other and to the north-east and to the east-north-east, and in this manner he went all this day.


He went this night to the east quarter of the north-east, twelve leagues: by day he ran to the east quarter north-east, twenty-three leagues and a half.


He went this night on his course to the east, quarter north-east, twenty-eight leagues, and in the day he ran twenty leagues.


After sunset he navigated on his route to the east. A hurricane came upon him which split all his sails, and he saw himself in great danger, but God willed that they should be delivered from it. They drew lots to send a pilgrim {he says} to Santa Maria de la Cinta in Huelva, who was to go in his shirt, and the lot fell to the Admiral. They all made a vow also to fast the first Saturday after, on bread and water. He went about sixty miles before the sails were split. Then they went with bare masts on account of the great tempest of wind and sea which rolled over them from two directions. They saw indications of being near to land, and found themselves quite near to Lisbon.


Last night they experienced a terrible tempest, and they thought they would be lost from the seas which came from two directions, and the winds which it appeared would raise the caravel in the air, and the water from the sky and the lightnings from many directions. It pleased our Lord to sustain them and they went thus until the first watch when our Lord showed them land, the sailors seeing it: and then in order not to approach the land until they might know it and see if there was any harbour or place to save themselves, he raised the "papahigo" as there was no other remedy and they sailed some distance although with great danger, putting to sea, and thus God guarded them until day, and he says that it was with infinite labour and fright. Day having come he recognised the land, which was the Rock of Cintra, which is near the river of Lisbon, where he determined to enter as he was not able to do anything else: so terrible was the tempest which prevailed in the village of Cascaes, which is at the entrance of the river. He says the people of the village were offering prayers for them all the morning and after he was inside the river the people came to see him, through wonder as to how they had escaped. and thus at the hour of tercia he came to stop at Rastelo, inside the river of Lisbon, where he learned from the sea-faring people, that there was never a winter with so many tempests, and that twenty-five ships had been lost in flanders, and others were there which had not been able to go out for four months. Then the Admiral wrote to the King of Portugal, who was nine leagues from there, that the Sovereigns of Castile had ordered him not to fail to enter the harbours of his Highness to ask what he might need in return for his money: and he asked the King to give him authority to go with the caravel to the city of Lisbon, as some dishonest persons thinking that he carried a great deal of gold and he being in a depopulated despoblado harbour, might undertake to commit some dishonest action: and also that his Highness might know that he did not come from Guinea but from the Indies.


To-day Bartholomew Diaz of Lisbon, the Patron of the large ship of the King of Portugal which was also anchored in Rastelo and which was better furnished with artillery and arms {the Admiral says} than any ship he ever saw, came with a small vessel armed to the caravel, and told the Admiral to enter the small vessel in order to go and give account to the factors of the King and to the Captain of the said ship. The Admiral replied that he was the Admiral of the Sovereigns of Castile, and that he did not render such accounts to such persons, nor would he get off from the ships or vessels where he was, unless he was obliged to by force of arms. The Patron replied that he might send the Master of the Caravel: the Admiral replied that he would neither send the Master nor any other person unless it was by force, because he considered it the same to allow a person to go as to go himself, and this was the custom of the Admirals of the Sovereigns of Castile to die rather than to give up their people. The Patron moderated his demands, and said that since he had formed that determination that it should be as he wished; but that he begged him to order the letters from the Sovereigns of Castile shown to him, if he had them. It pleased the Admiral to show them to him and then the Patron returned to the ship and related the matter to the Captain, who was called Alvaro Dama, who came to the caravel in great state with kettle-drums and trumpets and pipes, making a great display: and he talked with the Admiral and offered to do everything that he ordered him to do.


Having learned that the Admiral came from the Indies so many people came from the city of Lisbon to-day, to see him and to see the Indians, that it was a wonderful thing to see them and the way they all marvelled giving thanks to our Lord and saying that through the great faith of which the Sovereigns of Castile possessed and their desire to serve God, his High Majesty had given them all this.


To-day an exceedingly large number of people came to the caravel and many knights, among them the factors of the King, and they all offered infinite thanks to our Lord for such great good and increase of Christianity, which our Lord had given to the Sovereigns of Castile, which he says they attributed to the fact that their Highnesses labored and applied themselves for the increase of the Religion of Christ.


To-day the Admiral received a letter from the King of Portugal by Don Martin de Norona, in which letter the King begged him to come where he was, since the weather was not suitable for the departure of the caravel: and he did so in order to avoid Suspicion, although he did not wish to go and he went to sleep at Sacanben: the King ordered his factors to give the Admiral and his people everything they needed for the caravel without money, and that everything should be done as the Admiral wished.


To-day he left Sacanben, to go where the King was, which was at the valley of Paraiso, nine leagues from Lisbon: as it rained he was not able to reach there until night. The King ordered that he should he received with great honour by the principal persons of his house, and the King also received him with great honour, and showed him much favour, and ordered him to be seated and talked with him very well, and told him that he would order everything done which would be of use to the Sovereigns of Castile and to their service, and more fully than as if it were for his own service. And he showed that he felt great pleasure that the voyage had terminated favourably, and that it had been made; although he understood that in the capitulation between the Sovereigns and himself, that this conquest belonged to him. The Admiral replied to this that he had not seen the capitulation and did not know anything other than that the Sovereigns had commanded him not to go to the Mine nor to any part of Guinea, and that this had been proclaimed in all the ports of Andalusia before he started on the voyage. The King graciously responded that he was certain that mediators would not be necessary in this matter. He gave him as a host the Prior of Clato, who was the most important person who was there, from whom the Admiral received many honours and favours.


To-day after mass the King repeated to the Admiral that if he needed anything it would be given to him at once: and he talked with the Admiral a great deal about his voyage, and always ordered him to he seated and paid him great honour.


To-day the Admiral took leave of the King. who told him some things to say to the Sovereigns on his part, showing great kindness toward him all the time. The Admiral departed after eating and the King sent Don Martin de Norona with him, and all those cavaliers came to accompany him, and paid him honours for quite a length of time. Then he came to a monastery of San Antonio, which is near a place which is called Villafranca, where the Queen was staying; and he went to present his homage to her and to kiss her hands, because she had sent to say that he must not go away until she saw him: and with her was the Duke and the Marquis, and the Admiral received great honour. The Admiral took leave of her at night and went to sleep at Llandra.


To-day as he was about to start from Llandra for the caravel, a squire from the King arrived, who offered him on the part of the King, if he wished to go to Castile by land, to go with him, and procure lodgings and beasts of travel for him and everything he might need. When the Admiral parted from this squire, the squire sent him a mule for himself and another for his pilot, whom he had with him, and he says he learned that the squire had ordered that twenty small short swords {espadines} should be given to the pilot; and he says that it was said that this was all done that the Sovereigns might learn of it. He reached the caravel in the night.


To-day at 8 o'clock in a high sea and with the wind north-north- west, he raised the anchors and set sail to go to Seville.


Yesterday after sunset, he pursued his course to the south and before sunrise he found himself off the Cape of San Vincent, which is in Portugal. Then he navigated to the east to go to Saltes, and he went all day with a light wind until the present, when he is off Furon.


Yesterday after sunset he navigated on his course until day, with a light wind, and at sunrise he was off Saltes, and at the hour of mid-day with the tide rising, he entered by the bar of Saltes until he was inside the harbour from which he had departed August 3 of the past year; and thus he says that this writing is now finished, excepting that he intended to go by sea to Barcelona in which city he was informed that their Highnesses were staying and this was in order to make them a relation of all his voyage which our Lord had permitted him to make, and for which He had inspired him. For certainly besides that, he knew and held to it firmly and strongly without scruple, that His Exalted Majesty does all good things, and that everything is good except sin and that nothing can be estimated or thought which is not with His consent. "This voyage I know says the Admiral has miraculously proved it to be so, as can be learned from this writing by the many remarkable miracles which have been shown on the voyage and for me, who have been stick a long time in the Court of Your Highnesses, with the opposition and against the advice of so many of the principal persons of your house, who were all against me, treating this matter as a hoax. I hope in our Lord that it will be the greatest honour for Christianity, although it has been accomplished with such ease {que asi ligeramente haya jamas aparecido}." These are the final words of the Admiral Don Christopher Columbus in regard to his first voyage to the Indies, and his discovery of them.


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