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under command of Ruy Lopez de Villalobos, "a man of great experience
in matters of the sea," are destined for the voyage to the Western
Islands. This fleet is to set out within three months to prosecute
its discovery, "for all this time has been and is necessary to repair
the vessels." Alvarado tells the king "that all this has been at great
labor and expense; and not only our own possessions, but those of many
of our friends are risked in it - and I especially ... as I came from
those kingdoms impoverished and in debt to so great an extent, have
remained in so great necessity that, if your majesty do not help me
with some gift and gratification, as has ever been your custom toward
those who serve you, I can not maintain myself." By the agreement made
with the king, no covenant for explorations and discovery was to be
made with any other person for seven years. Alvarado has heard that
"the Marquis del Valle [19] persists in begging ... this conquest,
and wishes to despatch people to undertake it," and the king is asked
to grant no license for this. The _adelantado_ had determined to go
upon this expedition in person, but has been dissuaded from it by
his friends. Antonio de Almaguer has been received as an official
of the fleet in place of the previous appointee, who is dead, by
virtue of a royal decree permitting Almaguer's appointment to any
office that he might desire, in case of the death or absence of the
previous appointee. The latter had given the necessary pledges which
have been sent to the India House of Trade at Seville. The king is
asked to confirm this appointment. (No. i, pp. 1-7.)

Talavera, July 26, 1541. The contract made by the king with Alvarado in
1538 and 1539, and with Mendoza in 1541, provided for the discovery,
conquest, and colonization of the islands and provinces of the
southern sea toward the west. Alvarado had offered to undertake this
expedition within fifteen months after arriving in Guatemala, sending
westward two galleons and one ship, sufficiently provisioned for two
years, with full crew and equipment, and the necessary artillery;
and other vessels for discovery about the American coasts. If lands
and islands shall be discovered, he promises to send thither, for
their colonization, "ten additional ships, eight hundred soldiers,
and three hundred of them cavalry, should the nature of the land
be such that horsemen are necessary for it." He is also to send
"ecclesiastics and religious for the instruction and Christian training
of the natives of those regions." All this is to be at Alvarado's
expense, without the king being obliged to recompense him for any
outlay, except by the privileges granted him. "Likewise you offer,
that after the discovery ... you shall keep masters, carpenters,
and other workmen, as many as thirty, in a shipyard that you own in
the said province of Guatemala, in order that what shall have been
discovered, may be aided and preserved more easily." Also he is to
employ as many men as may be necessary in building vessels for the
space of ten years. He is to be governor of Guatemala for seven years,
"and as many more as we choose; unless, the _residencia_ being taken
from you now at our order by ... our auditor of the royal _Audiencia_
and chancellery of New Spain should show crimes for which you should
be deprived of your trust although you shall be obliged to render an
account whenever I order it" Four per cent of all profits of the fifth
part of "all gold, silver, precious stones, pearls, drugs, spices,
and of all other metals and things found and produced in the said
lands, and of which the rights pertain to us," and four per cent of
all tributes, are assigned forever to Alvarado (provided that such sum
does not exceed six thousand ducats each year), and are divided in due
ratio between the provinces discovered. This is clear of all rights or
taxes. In answer to Alvarado's request for a tenth of all lands and
vassals discovered, - selected as he may see fit, and accompanied by
the title of duke, with the dominion and jurisdiction of the grandees
of Castile, - the king grants him four per cent _pro rata_ in each
part, and the title of count, "with the dominion and jurisdiction
that we shall decree, at the time when we shall order the said title
bestowed. This shall be granted after the said discovery, and after
you shall have signified what part you have selected, provided that we
shall not have to give you your said part from the best or the worst
of the said islands and provinces, or the chief city of a province,
or a seaport." Other privileges are: the life-title of governor and
captain-general of all places discovered, with an annual salary of
three thousand ducats, plus one thousand ducats over and above this
sum, to be paid from the incomes and profits accruing to the king from
these discoveries, but these shall not be paid unless the incomes and
profits reach that figure; his heir shall be governor of two hundred
leagues of land, with the same salary and gratification, and under
the same condition Stone forts may be built, at his own expense,
in such places as he may select, which he and two generations of
his heirs shall hold, with an annual salary and gratification of
one hundred and fifty thousand maravedis for each one of the forts,
to be paid under the same conditions as the foregoing. He shall have
the perpetual office of high constable in all lands discovered and
conquered. No similar agreement shall be made with others for seven
years, if he fulfil his promises. Provision will be made later as to
the natives of the lands discovered. Men and goods may pass freely from
Puerto de Caballos (conquered by Alvarado) to Guatemala, and orders
are to be given by the king that the governor of Honduras shall place
no obstacles in the way of such passage; and meanwhile Alvarado's
claims to the above port are to be investigated. The governor of
Honduras will be required to furnish Indians as porters, for whose
services the current price must be paid, as well as for all carts
and other equipment used, but as much as possible must be carried
by waterways. One hundred and fifty negro slaves may be taken from
"these our kingdoms, or from the kingdom of Portugal for the said
fleet or for the preparation of the said fleet, free of all taxes;"
but the _adelantado_ must send an account to Spain, signed by the
officials of Guatemala, that such disposition of them has been made;
if not so employed, then the sum of six thousand maravedis is to be
paid for the rights of each slave. More slaves may be taken after
the discoveries have been made. The governors of all ports, etc.,
are to be commanded to accord good treatment to the fleet, should
it anchor at their respective ports. For ten years all goods taken
to the newly-discovered lands shall be free from all taxes. For
the same length of time the colonists shall not pay the tenth to
the king, but after the tenth year, they shall pay one-ninth, and
so on each year until they shall pay one-fifth; but for trade and
booty the fifth shall be paid from the beginning. There is to be no
duty on goods taken "from these our kingdoms to the said province
of Guatemala for the preparation of the said fleet" for the first
voyage. All personal property that Alvarado takes to the islands
or provinces discovered is to be during his life free from duty,
provided it shall not exceed in any year the sum of three thousand
ducats. Those going on the expedition who take horses, may take
two Indian slaves apiece. Land is to be assigned to the colonists,
of which they are to have perpetual ownership after a four years'
residence. [20] _Encomiendas_ of the Indians may be assigned "for such
time as you wish, under the instructions and ordinances given you." The
treaties with the Portuguese crown in regard to the demarcation and
the Moluccas must be strictly obeyed. [21] The agreement with Mendoza,
viceroy of New Spain, that he shall have a one-third interest in the
fleet is confirmed. No excise duty is to be levied "for ten years,
and until we order to the contrary." A hospital is provided for by
one hundred thousand maravedís taken from fines. The hospital also
is to receive the rights of _escobilla_ [22] and the sweepings in
the founding of metals. Lawyers and attorneys are prohibited from
engaging in their callings in the lands and islands discovered. The
royal officials appointed by the king are to be taken in the fleet, as
well as ecclesiastics "for the instruction of the natives of the said
islands and provinces to our holy Catholic faith." For the latter,
Alvarado is to pay the "freight, provisions, and other necessary
supplies fitting to their persons, all at your own cost." Ransoms
for captured native princes or seigniors pertain to the king, but,
on account of the labors and expenses of the undertaking, one-sixth
shall be given to the king and the remainder shall be distributed
among the conquerors, first subtracting the king's fifth; but of the
booty falling into the hands of the conquerors after the death of a
prince or chief killed in battle, or obtained by justice or otherwise,
one-half shall be the king's, and shall be delivered to his officials,
first withdrawing his fifth. In case of doubt regarding the collection
of the king's rights in any treasure, "especially of gold, silver,
precious stones, and pearls, and that found in graves or other places
where it shall have been hidden," and in other goods, the following
order is to be observed: one-fifth of everything taken in battle, or
taken from villages, or for ransoms shall be paid the king; he shall
receive one-half of all treasure found in graves or places of worship,
or buried, and the person finding the treasure shall have the other
half; but any person not announcing his find shall lose "all the
gold, silver, precious stones, and pearls, and in addition one-half
of his other possessions." The strict observance of the contract is
ordered. This contract was first made in 1638; in 1639, a section
was inserted confirming the partnership of Alvarado and Mendoza,
in which the latter was to receive one-third of all profit; in 1541,
in accordance with the new agreement between the two men, a clause
was added to this contract, giving equal rights to each. (No. ii,
pp. 7-26.)

Mexico, September, 1542. On the fifteenth of this month Mendoza
commissions Gonzalo Davalos as his treasurer on the expedition, Guido
de La Bezaris [23] as his accountant, and Martin de Islares as his
factor. The treasurer is to receive an annual salary of seventy-five
thousand maravedis, "to be paid from the profits that shall pertain
to me in those lands, it being understood that if this amount is not
reached, I am not obliged to pay it from any other source." The usual
duties of treasurer are to be observed by him. On the eighteenth of the
month very full instructions are given to Villalobos by Mendoza. The
principal injunctions of these instructions follow: he will report
at Puerto de la Navidad, where the vessels for the expedition have
been prepared; these will be delivered to him by Mendoza's agent,
who shall make a full declaration of everything in the equipment
of the vessels "except the merchandise and articles of barter,
the slaves, the forge ... because they must be under the charge of
the treasurer and officials whom I am sending in the fleet for that
purpose; and other things I specify in their instructions, and in
those of Juan de Villareal [his agent] in regard to it." He shall
sign this declaration in the records of the notary and in the books
of the accountant and treasurer. All the "artillery, ammunition,
war supplies, and weapons, shall be given into the charge of the
captain of artillery, and all the vessels of the fleet into the charge
of the commander of the fleet, together with all their equipment,
tackle and rigging, and provisions." In each ship, a pilot, master,
boatswain, and notary shall be appointed. Each ship shall be put in
charge of its master, and the notary for that ship shall take full
notes of everything transferred to the former's keeping. The master
shall also have care of the artillery of his vessel, such charge
being imposed by the captain of artillery. For greater security
the merchandise and articles for traffic, and the officials having
them in charge, are to be apportioned among the vessels. An account
must be taken in each vessel of its captain and crew (both sailors
and soldiers), giving for each man his father's name and his place
of birth. Villalobos is to have special watch over the treasurer,
accountant, and factor. The men of the ships are to be divided into
watches, no one being excused "except for legitimate cause." "And when
you are ready to sail, you shall make full homage, . . . according
to Spanish custom, that you will exercise well and faithfully the
said office of lieutenant-governor and captain-general, . . . and
that you will deliver to me, and to no one else, the discoveries and
profits pertaining to me, according as his majesty orders in his royal
provision, and that neither directly nor indirectly will you exercise
any deceit or wrong in anything." The officers and all others shall
take oath to obey him as captain-general, "and that there will be
no mutinies or rebellions." The officials appointed by the king to
guard his interests are to be received, and the best of treatment
shall be accorded them. When a settlement has been made one or two
vessels shall be sent back, sufficiently equipped, with news of such
settlement, and of all he has accomplished. "Likewise you shall send
me specimens of all the products of the land that you can secure,
... of the manner of dressing [of the inhabitants], and their mode
of life, what is their religion or sect, the character of their life
and government, their method of warfare with their neighbors; and if
they have received you peaceably, if you have made a treaty of peace
with them, or your status among them." The spread of religion is to be
sought especially. To this end "you shall try to ensure that those in
your charge live as good Catholics and Christians, that the names of
our Lord and his most blessed Mother, as well as those of his saints,
be revered and adored, and not blasphemed; and you shall see to it
strictly that blasphemies and public sins be punished." All letters
sent in the ships returning must be assured safe delivery. Mendoza is
to be first informed of all news brought by the ships. In these ships
shall be sent also both Mendoza's and the king's profits, as well as
those of the individuals of the fleet, provided the latter shall not
prevent the sending of either his or the king's. In affairs of moment
Villalobos must consult freely with many people of the fleet, among
whom are named "father prior Fray Gerónimo, Fray [blank in manuscript],
[24] who was prior of Totonilco, Jorge Nieto, the inspector Arevalo,
Gaspar Xuarez Davila, Francisco Merino, Matias de Alvarado, Bernardo de
la Torre, and Estrada." If Villalobos should determine to return with
all the fleet, those wishing to remain shall do so, and he shall leave
them a captain and sufficient stores. Persons are to be appointed to
look after the property and belongings of the dead, and to see that
no fraud is exercised, in order that his heirs may be secured. Entry
must be made, in the method in vogue in Spain, of all things sent
back in the ships. All settlements must be made on the shore, and a
fort must be erected at some distance from the natives' habitations,
in which the articles for trade must be securely stowed. No soldier
shall be permitted, without leave, and under severe penalties "to
go to the Indian settlements or enter their houses ... and no one
shall take anything by force, in the camp or in the town, contrary
to the will of the Indians where you shall have made peace." Men are
to be appointed who shall attend to the buying of all provisions,
"because not having knowledge of the products of the land, [your
men] would buy more in accordance with appetite than with reason,
where-from much damage would ensue, because the products of the land
would be placed at a higher figure, and the value of the articles
for barter ... would be lowered;" the prices for trafficking shall
be assigned to these buyers and they must not go over them, but try
to buy at a lower figure. The trafficking of the merchandise shall
be also in charge of experienced persons. "You shall advise your men
that, whenever they speak of the emperor, Our Lord, among the natives,
they shall speak of his greatness, and how he is the greatest Lord
of the earth, and that they have been sent by one of his captains of
these regions." (Nos. ii, iii, pp. 7-46.)

Puerto de Navidad, October 22, 1542. Villalobos certifies before a
notary that he has received from Juan de Villareal, Mendoza's agent,
"four ships, one small galley, and one _fusta,_ [25] to wit: the
admiral's ship, named 'Santiago;' the 'San Jorge,' 'San Antonio,' and
'San Juan de Letran;' the galley 'San Christoval,' and the _fusta_
'San Martin' - with all equipment, ammunition, artillery, weapons,
provisions, etc.,... in the name of his lordship [Mendoza] ... in
order to go with the said vessels and with the soldiers of his most
illustrious lordship, upon the pursuit and prosecution of the said
voyage." He promises in full terms to carry out to the letter all
instructions and to give true and complete accounts of everything to
Mendoza or his agents. This oath is attested in the form prescribed
by the royal notary-public. This same day the oath of obedience is
taken by the captains and soldiers, and the pilots and seamen. The
oath taken by the captains is, in part, as follows: "Your graces,
captains Bernaldo de la Torre, Don Alonso Manrrique, Francisco Merino,
Mathias de Alvarado, Pero Ortiz de Rueda, Christoval de Pareja, and
gentlemen of this fleet, of which Rui Lopez de Villalobos goes as
general for his most illustrious lordship, swear before God, Our Lord,
and blessed Mary his Mother, on the holy words written in this book
of the holy gospels, and on this sign of the cross [on which each one
of them placed his right hand] that, as good, faithful, and Catholic
Christians, you promise and pledge your faith and word, and homage as
knights and nobles, by right, of Spain, once, twice, and thrice, to be
faithful and obedient, and to hold as your captain-general Rui Lopez
de Villalobos, here present; and you will observe the instructions
he has given you, in so far as the good of the business requires it;
and you will be obedient and will hearken to his orders. And you
shall declare and advise, each one of you, what you deem suitable
and necessary for the good of this expedition, whether he asks it
or not, although you think he may be vexed or angry at hearing what
you wish to tell him; only you shall state the fundamental reason
why your assertion is good, in everything making it a point of your
desire to come directly to the question, and not to give your advice
with passion, or servilely, but with all freedom." If he send them on
missions they must report to him alone. "And none of you shall rouse
up mutinies, scandals, seditions, or conspiracies; nor shall you talk
against your captain-general or the expedition; rather if you learn
or foresee anything of such matters, you shall tell and inform your
general thereof, so that it may be remedied." The soldiers swear to
be obedient to the commands of Villalobos and his captains, and to
follow the general's banners, day or night, holding him as chief;
they must be loyal and true in every sense of the word, both on sea
and land. The pilots (who are named) and the seamen also take like
oath to fulfil their duties completely, acknowledging Villalobos as
general. They are to obey the latter "both now on the said voyage,
and in the Western Islands." They must try to accomplish the voyage
in the shortest time possible, and must take part in no mutinies or
uprisings. In his instructions to his captains Villalobos requires
the following: No soldier is to be admitted to the fleet who does not
bear a certificate of confession and communion. If there be any such,
he must confess within three days to the religious in the fleet, or be
put on short rations of water until he does confess. Severe punishment
for blasphemy of "the name of God, our Lord, his glorious Mother, or
of any of the saints" is stipulated, varying in degree according to
the blasphemy. The religious are to receive every consideration, that
the natives may see "how we honor the ministers of the Gospel." All
weapons are to be kept in a special place in each ship and given to the
men only when necessary, and they shall be regularly inspected. Most
stringent rules are laid down as to the distribution of water, and the
water butts must be inspected each day by the "steward, master, pilot,
or boatswain," and every four days by the captain in person, to see
that the regulations pertaining thereto are strictly observed. Likewise
the amounts of food to be given are carefully stipulated, the amounts,
as in the case of the water, being different for soldiers, sailors,
negroes, and Indians. Fire is guarded against by ordering all fires,
except the lantern, out at four in the afternoon, unless to cook
something for a sick man, and then that fire shall be immediately
extinguished. Watches are to be maintained day and night. Those caught
sleeping at their posts are to be severely punished. If the culprit be
an individual who holds an office, for the first offense he shall lose
his office; for the second he shall be thrown overboard. A soldier (not
of gentle birth) for the first offense shall be made to pass under the
keel three times; and for the second be thrown overboard. The captain
must stand one watch each night. Each captain shall have a body-guard
of six men. All fire must be kept away from the powder. At the least
appearance of mutiny immediate measures are to be taken; if it is
not possible to inform Villalobos, then the captain is empowered to
execute summary justice. The captain is to keep a compass in his room,
which he shall constantly consult, and must keep close watch on the
course. In case one vessel be separated from the fleet and reach any
land, the captain must see that the natives are well treated. The men
"shall not enter their houses, towns, or temples, or talk to the women;
nor shall they take anything to eat, or any other articles, before you
appoint a man who understands trading, and he shall buy for all what
they may need. And you shall try to find out the products of the land,
and to procure specimens thereof, and ascertain the character of the
people and the land; so that, when we meet you there, you may advise me
of everything, and his most illustrious lordship may have knowledge
of it all." The captain must under no consideration disembark at
this land himself, but must send a trustworthy agent with armed men
to arrange peace and friendship with the natives. They must return
two hours before nightfall. If peace be made, then a trader will be
appointed. They are to be careful that "God our Lord be not offended
because of the Indians you take with you; and they must examine the
instructions of the pilots and see that the latter abide by these
instructions." (Nos. v-viii, pp. 46-65.)

1543. An extensive correspondence ensues between Villalobos and
Jorge de Castro, after the fleet, had reached the Philippines,
[26] in which the latter, especially in his letters of July 20 and
September 2, requests the former to leave the lands falling within the
demarcation of the Portuguese monarch; and to cease his depredations
among the natives. Villalobos replies to these letters under dates
of August 9 and September 12 respectively, justifying his expedition,
and his conduct toward the natives, and stating that the requirements
given him are to respect the Portuguese demarcation, which he has
done. (No. ix, pp. 66-94.)

Cochin, in Portuguese India, February 22, 1547. Fray Geronimo de
Santistéban writes to the viceroy of New Spain an account of the
expedition of Villalobos. He names and describes very briefly
the islands in their course; at one of these they cast anchor,
and he gives a description of its people and resources. "February
29 we saw the islands of Bindanao [Mindanao], San Juan, and San
Antonio." [27] One of the vessels had been badly damaged in a
storm before reaching the island named Matalotes. At Mazaua Bay
they began first to experience famine and sickness. As food was
refused them on the island of Sarrangan, and their men attacked,


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Online LibraryUnknownThe Philippine Islands, 1493-1803 — Volume 02 of 55 1521-1569 Explorations by Early Navigators, Descriptions of the Islands and Their Peoples, Their History and Records of the Catholic Missions, as Re → online text (page 3 of 22)