A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 04 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 764 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 04.

[2] These were probably the Chichimecas and Otomies, who inhabited to the
    north-west of the Mexican empire.—­E.

[3] From these slight notices, nothing certain can be gathered respecting
    these large bones:  Yet there is every reason to believe they must have
    been of the same kind with those now familiar to the learned world,
    under the name of Mammoth.  The vale of Mexico has every indication
    of having once been an immense inland lake, and the other big bones
    of North America have all been found in places of a similar
    description.  The greatest deposit of these hitherto known, is at a
    place called big-bone-swamp, near the Mississippi, in the modern
    state of Kentucky.—­E.


Expeditions of Gonzalo de Sandoval, Pedro de Alvarado, and others, for reducing the Mexican Provinces.

After the settlement with Christoval de Tapia, the Captains Sandoval and Alvarado resumed the expeditions with which they had been before entrusted, and on this occasion I went along with Sandoval.  On our arrival at Tustepeque[1], I took my lodgings on the summit of a very high tower of a temple, for the sake of fresh air, and to avoid the musquitoes, which were very troublesome below.  At this place, seventy-two of the soldiers who came with Narvaez and six Spanish women were put to death.  The whole province submitted immediately to Sandoval, except the Mexican chief who had been the principal instrument of the destruction of our soldiers, who was soon afterwards made prisoner and burnt alive.  Many others had been equally guilty, but this example of severity was deemed sufficient.

Sandoval, in the next place, sent a message to the Tzapotecas, who inhabit a mountainous district about ten leagues from Tustepeque or Tututepec, ordering them to submit to his authority; and on their refusal, an expedition was sent against them under Captain Briones, who according to his own account had served with reputation in the wars of Italy.  His detachment consisted of 100 Spanish infantry, and about an equal number of Indian allies; but the enemy were prepared for him, and so completely surprised him in a difficult pass of the mountains, that they drove him and his men over the rocks, rolling them down to the bottom, by which above a third of them were wounded, of whom one afterwards died.  The district inhabited by the Tzapotecas is of very difficult access among rocky mountains, where the troops can only pass in single file, and the climate is very moist and rainy.  The inhabitants are armed with long lances, having stone heads about an ell long, which have two edges as sharp as razors, and they are defended by pliable shields which cover their whole bodies.  They are extremely nimble, and give signals to each other by loud whistlings, which echo among the rocks with inconceivable shrillness.  Their province is named

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