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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 03 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 652 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 03.
new commander.  When he received intelligence of Juan Aguado coming in search of him, the admiral thought proper to return to the town of Isabella; where he received the letters of their majesties before all the people, with the sound of trumpets, and all the demonstrations of profound respect.  Aguado, however, did not the less continue to shew his indiscretion, behaving disrespectfully to the admiral, and interfering with many things, by which he gave a bad example to others, and encouraged them to despise the admirals authority; who, on the other hand, honoured and entertained him generously, and bore his contumelious behaviour with great modesty.  Among other things, Aguado pretended that the admiral had not received their majesties letters with becoming respect; and about four months afterwards he sent for the notaries to his house, requiring them to make out affidavits to that effect.  When they desired him to send the vouchers on which this charge was grounded, he alleged that he could not trust them in their hands:  At length, however, affidavit was made on this subject; but it was entirely favourable to the character of the admiral.  The conduct and example of Aguado were very prejudicial to the authority of the admiral, and the inhabitants of Isabella were at the same time much dissatisfied with their condition; They were mostly sick, and had no other provisions beyond their allowances from the royal stores.  Each man was allowed a small measure of wheat, which he had to grind for his own use in a hand-mill, though many used it boiled:  Besides which they had rations of rusty bacon, or rotten cheese, and a few beans or peas, without any wine.  As they were all in the royal pay, the admiral compelled them to work on the fort, his own house, or the other public structures, which reduced them almost to despair, and induced them to complain of their intolerable hardships to Aguado.  Such of the colonists as were in health fared much better, as they were employed in going about the island keeping the natives in subjection.  Having collected as he thought a sufficient number of complaints against the admiral, Aguado prepared to return into Spain; but his four ships were wrecked in the port, by one of these great storms which the Indians call Hurrancans, so that he had no vessel to return in except one of the two caravels belonging to the admiral.

Taking into consideration the disrespectful behaviour of Aguado, and being also informed of all that Friar Boyle and Don Peter Margarite had reported to his prejudice at court, where he had no other support but his own virtue, the admiral resolved to appear in person before their majesties, that he might clear himself of the many calumnies which had been invented by his enemies, and might acquaint them with the discoveries he had made respecting Cuba, and give his advice respecting the line of partition of the ocean between the crowns of Spain and Portugal.  Before leaving the island,

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