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93. The smoothness of the sea, and the timely assistance from the Nigna, enabled the crew to save their lives. The natives, as soon as they heard of this disaster, crowded to the shore, with Guacanahari at their head, and lamented their mis. fortune with tears of sincere condolence. But they did not rest satisfied with this -unavailing expression of their sorrow; they launched a vast number of canoes, and, under the direction of Spaniards, rendered important services in saving the property of the wreck; Guacanahari, in person, took charge of the goods as they were landed; by his orders they were all deposited in one place, and sentinels were posted to keep the mul. titude at a distance.

94. Next morning this prince visited Columbus, who was on board of the Nigna, and, in the warmth of affection, offered all he had to repair his loss. Such tender assiduity and sincere condolence in a savage, afforded Columbus that relief his agitated spirits stood in need of. Hitherto Columbus had heard no account of the Pinta, and suspected 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 entitled. But one vessel now remained, and that the smallest and most crazy of the squadron : in which they were compelled to traverse such a vast ocean, and carry so many men back to Europe.

95. 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 voluntarily offered to re. main 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 those prisoners who unhappily fell into their hands.

96. Guacanahari, as he was speaking of these dreadful in. vaders, discovered such symptoms of terror, as well as con. sciousness of the inability of his own people to resist them, that led Columbus to believe such a proposal would be very agreea; ble. 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.

97. 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 labored with inconsiderate assiduity, in erecting this first monument of their own servitude. The high opinion the natives had of the Span. iards, 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 striking idea of their power to punish and destroy such as 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

98. These rude people, unacquainted with any hostile weapons but wooden swords, javelins hardened in the fire, and reeds pointed with the bones of fishes, admired and trembled; 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 toʻresist 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 selected thirty-eight of his people to remain on the island; and the command of these was given to Diego 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 every thing requisite for this infant colony. He strongly insisted on their preserving concord amongst them. selves, a prompt and ready obedience to their commander,

and the maintenance of a friendiy 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 re. inforcement sufficient to take full possession of the country. He further promised to place their merit in a conspicuous light to the king and queen.

99. Having 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 the Pinta, after

a separation of more than six weeks. Pinzon endeavored to · justify his conduct, pretending that he had been driven from

his course by stress of weather, and prevented from returning | by contrary winds. Columbus, though no stranger to his per

fidious intentions, as well as the falsehood he urged in his defence, was sensible that it was not a proper time for exerting his authority, and was pleased with joining his consort, as it delivered him from some uneasy apprehensions : he therefore admitted the apology without difficulty, and restored him to favor. Columbus now found it necessary, from the eagerness which his men showed to visit their native country, and the crazy condition of his ships, to hasten his return to Europe.

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-DISCOVERS DESEADA. 100. On the sixteenth of January, 149 Columbus 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 different islands, on board ; and besides the të gold, which was the principal object of research, he had speci.

mens 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.

101. The voyage was prosperous to the 14th of February, at which time they had advanced fifteen hundred miles, when the wind began to rise, and blow with increasing rage, till it terminated in a violent hurricane. Columbus's naval skill and experience were severely put to the proof; destruction seemed inevitable; the sailors had recourse to prayers and to the in vocation of saints, to vows and charms, to every thing that religion or superstition suggests to the affrighted mind. No prospect of deliverance appearing, despair was visible in all countenances, and they expected 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 honor due to the author and conductor of the noblest enterprise 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.

102. Having wrapped this up in an oiled cloth, which he inclosed in a cake of wax, he then carefully put it into a cask, effectually stopping it to keep out the water, and 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 life: 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 Íslands, 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: the 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 suspi. cions 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.

103. 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. Upon application to the king of Portugal, he was allowed to come up to Lisbon; Columbus was received with all the marks of distinction due to a man who had performed things so extraordinary and unexpected. The king admitted him into his presence, treated him with great respect, and listened to the account he gave of his voyage, with admiration mingled with regret.

104. 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 ran eagerly to the shore to welcome their relations and fellow-citizens, and to hear tidings of their voyage.

105. 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 cannons fired; Columbus was received at landing with royal honors, and all the people accompanied him and his crew, in solemn procession, to church, where they returned thanks to heaven, which had so wonderfully conducted, and crowned with success, a voyage of greater length, and of more importance, than had been attempted in any former age. To add to the general joy, the Pinta, on the evening of the day, entered the harbor. Ferdinand and Isabella being at Barcelona, they were no less astonished than delighted, with the unex. pected event : they 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.

106. 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 spe. cies. Next to them were carried the ornaments of gold, fash: ioned by the rude art of the natives, grains of gold found in the mountains and rivers ; 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 country. men, by a route unknown to past ages, to the knowledge of a new country, abounding with riches, and as fertile as the best cultivated lands in Spain.

107. 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, gaye a circumstantial account of his yoyage. He delivered it with that composure

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