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that relief his agitated spirits stood in need of. Columbus hitherto had heard no account of La Pinta, and suspected, not without cause, that his treacherous associate had set sail for Europe, that he might claim the merit of carrying the first tidings of the discoveries to Spain, and so far gain the attention of his sovereign as to rob Columbus of the glory and reward to which he was justly intitltd. Hut one f vessel now remained, and that the smallest, and most crazy of the squadron: in which they were compelled to traverse a vast ocean, with so many men back to Europe.
To remedy this last inconvenience, he proposed to his men the great advantages that would accrue by leaving some of them on the Island, to learn the language of the natives, study their disposition,examine the country, search for mines, and prepare for the commodious settlement of the colony, for which he proposed to return, and secure those advantages which it was reasonable to expect from his discoveries. To this proposal all his men assented, and many offered voluntarily to remain behind. Guacanahari was pleased with the proposition, as he conceived that with such powerful allies, he should be able to repel the attacks of a warlike and fierce people he called Caribeans, who sometimes invaded his dominions, delighting in blood, and devoured the flesh of the prisoners, who unhappily fell into their hands. Guacanahari as he was speaking of these dreadful invaders, discovered such symptoms of terror, as well as consciousness of the inability of his own people to resist them, that led Columbus to believe such a proposal would be very agreeable. Guacanahari, closed instantly with the proposal, and thought,himself safe under the protection of beings sprung from heaven, and superior in power to mortal men.
The ground was marked out for a small fort, which was called by Columbus Navidad, because it was Christmas-day when he landed there. A deep ditch was drawn around it: the ramparts were fortified, and the great guns saved out of the admiral's ship were planted upon them. In ten days the work was completed; the simple unsuspecting Indians, laboured with inconsiderate assiduity, imfljBing this first monument of their own servitude. ThfP'liigh opinion the natives entertained for the Spaniards, was increased by the caresses and liberality of Columbus; but while he wished to inspire them with confidence in their disposition to do good, he also wished to give them some Vol. i. O
.striking idea of their power to punish and destroy such provoked their just indignation. With this view, he drew up his men in order of battle, in view of a vast concourse of people, and made an ostentatious display of the force of the Spanish arms.
These rude people, strangers to any hostile weapons, but wooden swords, javelins hardened in the fire, and reeds pointed with the bones of fishes, admired and trembled, but the sudden explosion of the great guns, struck them with such terror and astonishment, that they fell flat to the ground, and covered their faces with their hands; and when they beheld the effects of the balls, they were persuaded that it was impossible to resist men who came armed with thunder and lightning against their enemies. After giving such powerful impressions of the power and beneficence of the Spaniards, Columbus chose out thirty-eight of his people to remain in the, island. The command of these was given to DiegVde Arada, a gentleman of Cordova; Columbus'investing him with the same powers which he had himself received from his royal patrons : after furnishing him with everything requisite for this infant colony. He strongly insisted on their preserving concord amongst themselves, a prompt and ready obedience to their commander, and the maintenance of a friendly intercourse with the natives, as the surest means of their preservation. That they should cultivate the friendship of Guacanahari, but not put themselves in his power by straggling in small parties from the fort. He then took his leave, after promising to revisit them soon with a reinforcement sufficient to take full possession of the country. He further promised to place their merit in a conspicuous light to the king and queen.
.Haying thus taken every precaution to secure the colony, he left Navidad on the fourth day of January, 1493, and steering towards the east on the sixth, he discovered La Pinta, after a separation of more than six weeks. Pinzon endeavoured to justify his conduct, pretending he had been driven from his course by stress of weather, and prevented from returning by contrary winds. Columbus, though no stranger to his perfidious intentions, as well as the falsehood he urged in his defence, was so sensible that it was not a proper time for exerting his authority, and was so pleased with joining his consort, as it delivered him from some uneasy apprehensions, that he admitted the apology without difficulty, and restored him to favour. Columbus now found it necessary, from the eagerness which his men shewed to visit their native country, and the crazy condi-. tlon of his ships, to hasten his return to Europe.
With this view, on the sixteenth of January, he directed his course to the north-east, and was soon out of sight of his newly discovered country. He had some of the natives whom he had taken from the different islands on board; and besides the gold which was the principal object of research, he had specimens of all the productions which were likely to become subjects of commerce, as well as many strange birds and other natural curiosities, which might attract the attention, and excite the wonder of the people.
The voyage was prosperous to the fourteenth of t'cbru-' ary, at which time they had advanced five hundred leagues, when the wind began to rise, and blow with increasing rage, till it terminated in a violent hurricane. Columbus's naval sMll .and expedience was- severely put to the proof; destruction seemed inevitable; the sailors had recourse to prayers, andto the invocation of saints, to vows and charms, to everything that religion or superstition suggests to the affrighted mind. No prospect of deliverance appearing, despair was visible in every countenance, and they expe< te'd every moment to be swallowed up by the waves. Columbus had to endure feelings peculiar to himself. He dreaded that all the knowledge of his discoveries would be lost to the world, and that his name would descend to posterity as that of a rash deluded adventurer, instead of being transmitted with the honour due to the author and conductor of the noblest enterprize, that had ever been undertaken. Reflections like these extinguished all sense of his own personal danger. More solicitous to preserve the memory of what he had achieved, than the preservation of his own life, he retired to his cabin, and wrote upon parchment a short account of the voyage he had made, the course he had taken, and of the riches and situation of the country he had discovered, and of the small colony he had left there.
Having wrapped this up in an oiled cloth, which he enclosed in a cake of wax, he then carefully put it into a cask, effectually stopping it to keep out the water, he threw it into the sea, in hopes that some fortunate accident might preserve a deposit of so much importance to the world. Providence at length interposed to save so valuable a lift." The wind abated, the sea became calm, and on the evening of the fifteenth they discovered land, which they soon knew to be St. Mary, one of the Azores, or Western Islands, subject to the crown of Portugal. There he obtained a supply of provisions, and such other things as he had need of. There was one circumstance that greatly disquieted him: La Pinta had separated from him during the hurricane; he was apprehensive that she had foundered, and that all her crew had perished: afterwards, his former suspicions revived, that Pinzon had borne away for Spain, that he might reach it before him, and give the first account of his discoveries. In order to prevent this he proceeded on his voyage as soon as the weather would permit.
At no great distance from the coast of Spain, another storm arose, little inferior to the former in violence; and after driving before it, during two days and two nights, he was forced to take shelter in the river Tagus.: Upifn, application to the king of Portugal, fie was allowed tp'c-ome up to Lisbon; Columbus was received with all the-niarks of distinction due to a man who had performed thiiig,s s& extraordinary and unexpected. The king admitted, Iiicn into his presence, treated him with great respect, and listened to the account he gave of his voyage, with admiration mingled with regret.
Columbus was now able to prove the solidity of his schemes, to those very persons, who with an ignorance disgraceful to themselves, and fatal to their country, had lately rejected them as the projects of a visionary adventurer. Columbus was so impatient to return to Spain, that he remained only five days at Lisbon, and on the fifteenth of March, he arrived at the port of Palos just seven months and eleven days from the time he set out from thence upon his voyage. The inhabitants all ran eagerly to the shore to welcome their relations, and fellow citizens, and to hear tidings of their voyage.
When the successful issue of it was known, when they beheld the strange appearance of the Indians, the unknown animals, and singular productions, of the newly discovered countries, the effusion of joy was unbounded. The bells were rung, the cannon fired; Columbus was received at landing with royal honours, and all the people accompanied him, and his crew, in solemn procession to church, where they returned thanks to heaven, which had so wonderfully sondueted, and crowned with success, a voyage of greater length, and of more importance, than had been attempted in any former age. To add tothe general joy La Pinta on the evening of the day entered the harbour. Ferdinand and Isabella were at Barcelona, they were no less astonished than delighted, with this unexpected event: sent a messenger requesting him in terms the most respectful, to repair immediately to court, that from himself they might receive a full detail of his extraordinary services^ and discoveries.
During his journey to Barcelona, the people flocked .from the adjacent country, following him with admiration and applause. His entrance into the city, was conducted, by order of Ferdinand and Isabella with extreme pomp, suitable to the great event which added such distinguishing lustre to their reign. The people whom he brought along with him, the natives of the countries he had discovered, marched first, and by their singular complexion, the wild peculiarities of their features, and uncouth finery, appeared like men of another species. Next to them were carried the ornaments of gold, fashioned by the rude art of the natives, grains of gold found in the mountains and rivers f after these appeared the various commodities of the new world and its curious productions: Columbus closed the procession and attracted the eyes of all the spectators, who could not sufficiently admire the man whose superior sagacity and fortitude, had conducted their countrymen by a route unknown to past ages, to the knowledge of a new country, abounding with riches and fertile as the best cultiTated lands in Spain,
Ferdinand and Isabella received him in their royal robes, seated upon a throne under a magnificent canopy. They stood up as he approached, and raised him as he kneeled to kiss their hands. He then took his seat on a chair prepared for him, and by their majesties orders' gave a circumstantial account of his voyage. He delivered it with that composure and dignity, so suitable to the Spanish nation, and with that modest simplicity so characteristic of great minds, that satisfied with having performed great actions, seeks not an ostentatious display of words to set them forth. When his narration was finished, the hin^ and queen kneeleddown and offered up thanks to Almigh: God, for the discovery of those new regions, from whi