A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels - Volume 05 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 739 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels.

While these things were transacting in Peru, the emperor Charles V. was residing in Germany, where he had gone on purpose to overthrow the party of the Lutherans and others who had separated from the church of Rome.  The emperor was desirous to receive an account of the disturbances in that distant and valuable colony from Diego Alvarez Cueto, the brother-in-law of the late viceroy, and Francisco Maldonado the messenger of Gonzalo Pizarro, both of whom went into Germany for that purpose.  At this time, however, though acquainted with the revolt of Peru, the imprisonment of the viceroy, and the usurpation of the government by Pizarro, the court necessarily remained ignorant of the death of the viceroy.  Frequent deliberations were held for devising proper remedies to restore tranquillity to Peru; but the matter lay over for some considerable time, in consequence of the absence of the emperor from Spain, and because he was at this time frequently attacked by illness.  At length it was determined to send over into Peru the licentiate Pedro de la Gasca, at that time a counsellor of inquisition.  The prudent and intelligent character of this man was already well known, from the skill and success with which he had already conducted several affairs of consequence with which he had been entrusted, and particularly by the excellent dispositions and preparations which he had made, only a few years before, to defend the kingdom of Valencia against an expected invasion of the Turks and Moors, and in various matters respecting the new converts in that kingdom, which he took the management of while occupied in some of the affairs of the holy office on which he had been sent thither by the emperor.

The title granted to Gasca on occasion of going into Peru, was only that of president of the royal court of audience.  But, by his commision, he was invested with full powers in every thing respecting the government of the country; to pacify the troubles and restore peace; and to pardon as he might see proper all crimes, whether committed before his arrival or during his residence in the country.  Along with Gasca, the licentiates Ganas and Renteria went out to Peru, as judges or oydors of the supreme tribunal or royal court of audience.  Gasca was likewise furnished with full powers to raise troops in case of necessity, and to do every thing that the exigency of affairs might require, without waiting for orders or instructions from Spain.  His powers and orders however were kept secret, as it was wished to attempt the restoration of order by gentle means; for which reason nothing was spoken of but pardon and indemnity, and he was desired to endeavour to restore the colony to peace and tranquillity by means of clemency if possible.

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