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State Library of NSW
Ninth in the series of fourteen known Quirós' presentation memorials. Quirós wrote about fifty memorials addressed to the King Philip III of Spain describing the wonders of the lands he had discovered and requesting Royal support to organize a new expedition to the Southern hemisphere. The majority of them were manuscripts, but fourteen were printed between 1607 and 1614 at Quirós' expense for presentation at the Council of the Indies. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe after the leaking of one of the original Memorials - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana. In this ninth presentation memorial Quirós outlines his "proposed expedition to establish a settlement in the Austral Lands, restating his requirements and giving details as to the disbursement of the 500,000 ducats. Continuing the shorter version Quirós gives a résumé of the preparations for the 1605 expedition and the manner in which the monies of the royal treasury were spent, instancing economies which he introduced in order to reduce the cost of the expedition. He also adds some personal reflections on the events of the voyage and some of the difficulties encountered"--Kelly.
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, want to show Y.M. and the world how much I wish to honour and glorify God with the population settlement that Y.M. sent me to start in the Southern Territory discovered on Y.M.’s orders, to preach the Gospel and convert all the gentiles born there, and I consider that a reward for my travails. I, Sir, thank God infinitely, for I regard that great and pious cause as free of high risks as I have found it so far and I give them to Y.M. for such a great honour, which I accept with as much humility as possible and in longstanding spirits, I claim with great determination that I will continue to do my duty by God and Y.M. as much as possible, given the trust that was placed in me, with the following warnings. Y.M.’s royal letters patent received from Secretary Gabriel de Hoa on December 18th commands the Viceroy of Perú to dispatch me. I hereby notify that there is confusion and danger and I say that if Y.M. commands the Viceroy to reach an agreement with me on what is convenient on how to spend the 500,000 ducats that I requested, giving the Viceroy authority to release the funds that will be distributed as per my orders without keeping them in my possession, I will make the rough estimates and distributions, search for the goods, do the pricing, send representativesto purchase good and inexpensive items and save on freight with the ships under my command.
In short, I will look for the right men, within and without Lima, as well as whatever a good dispatch involves, always sticking to the above mentioned 500,000 ducats and saving a considerable sum. Together with the 1,000 men, I will take their wives, which was not mentioned, since they are an important aspect of settlement, together with their children and servants, and all the adventurers. For a good dispatch as instructed, a million is very little and my dispatch will be short. You can be sure, Y.M., that it will be at your best discretion, and that everything I requested is for the greater benefit of this mission, which I cannot lead or guarantee from here or there, but if Y.M. issues the documents here and dispatch is given in Perú, those documents must be to my entire satisfaction, after Y.M. gives me the title I need to appoint all the necessary officers with the authority to manage affairs from here and to firmly establish all matters concerning those locations as it is convenient for them, for Y.M. and for all those who participate in the mission. Sir, considering that I have not raised the topic of my benefits nor do I note or want them, in exchange for leading this mission as splendidly as it deserves, the least that I need and cannot do without should not be refused, for it was not refused either to Columbus or to any of the others who undertook such missions. On the contrary, they were given much more than I request, not for myself but to serve Y.M., so I do not deserve any less.
If necessary I will give examples, not only from the past but also from the present. It is known that third‐party appointed officers strike deals with the government and go ahead, and in such remote areas, even closer to home, there is a risk that such deals may happen, so there is a very good reason to avoid them from here. The above mentioned 500,000 ducats will be spent on the whole as follows: 150,000 will be destined to pay the sailors’ wages and to help some important persons; 150,000 will be used for ships, riggings and careening – 150,000 will be earmarked for two‐yearsupplies, weapons, ammunition, the sea room, tarps, oakum, riggings, cables and other supplies that cannot be avoided; 50,000 will be used for ornaments, items for divine worship and religious garments; for cords, hats, footwear and other military garments; for clothes to dress some Indians and ransom for everybody. The last 50,000 will be employed to purchase iron, steel and tools – three very important wares to build two large ships and to load them with whatever the earth can give; send one to Mexico and the other to Lima on Y.M.’s behalf to build other necessary vessels for discoveries and transport, to prepare those that I will sail in and the dispatch notes I will send – if convenient – for the discovery of the Anian strait since it can be done with ease from there; and also for the construction of churches, houses and mills; and to cultivate, sow and till the land.
In short, Sir, the strength of such a mission lies in good men, steel and iron, and not in the errorsthat I can already see. If Y.M. could arrange the purchase on credit of 600 lbs of iron, the necessary muskets and arquebuses in Seville, Sanlúcar and Cádiz, all the above mentioned goods as well as some others that I will indicate in convenient quantities will save at least a third or even more of what merchants in Perú earn, bearing in mind that they will increase the price of iron and of all the remaining necessary supplies, which will result in less goods for me to take, and the life of this cause and its men depends on surpluses. Apart from this, there will be savings in rights and freight, for Y.M.’s galleons can use cargo as ballast. From Panamá to Lima, navy ships will take the money to Puerto Bello, and 150 clerics and lay people can be easily accommodated on board with all these savings. Of all these people, some will be experienced in seafaring, campaigning and Indian mountaineering, and some others will be knowledgeable in matters of spiritual and temporal government. Some will be knowledgeable in business matters and the division of labour, and some others in all the necessary trades and crafts for the republic I believe should be settled there. All of them should be known not only for making Y.M.’s part stronger and safer, but also for any of the mattersreferred to. Should Y.M. so wish, I will reveal their names; given that they are all so well regarded in their trades, I will also reveal the names of their wives, children and servants. I ask Your Majesty to give me licence, ships and sustenance to sail to Lima in the manner referred to, for such a reasonable mission will be guided thus from here.
Behold, Y.M., that the greater good of this mission depends upon this decision as well as the greater service to Y.M. Otherwise, there should be cuts in such a way that later on I will not be charged with twice the expenditure, bad dispatch, delayed departure, errors for lack of the required gear and excess of unbalanced people, plus all the ensuing immense and irreparable damages and losses, since I unburden my conscience with Y.M.’s. In your royal letters patent, Y.M. commandsthe Viceroy of Perú to dispatch me and I see no inconvenience. Even though the Marquis of Montes Claros – being such a good minister and zealous servant of God and of Y.M.’s – will give me dispatch, it must be noted that in such an important mission there is no more serious or pernicious inconvenience than a delay, with the loss of so many souls, still for what can be offered, for the devil will not drop his guard over there, exactly as he did not here. I beg Y.M. to efficiently eliminate such an issue because doing so does not offer a major inconvenience, since it gives me major pain to see that when I went to discover unknown lands, I was given twice as much dispatch as I requested – clear,strong and to my entire satisfaction, devoid of all inconvenience and hindrance. Now, however, being the same man (and probably a bit more) that Y.M. dispatches to populate already discovered lands, I receive conditional dispatch without title or faculty to make arrangements and order whatever I do on my own, with open doors not only to one but also to several inconveniences, thus making the mission risky. Y.M., far away my life will be wasted on so much work in vain, when it could shine if I were to receive serious help.
I have been persisting for fifteen years; Y.M. would have had one or two new cities per year, that is, fifteen or thirty established cities in those territories. The fruits of such great and good plans would have been reaped and the Indies would have been unburdened of their overpopulation. Furthermore, I beg Y.M. to grant me a second Royal Charter stating that there should be no inconvenience, difficulty or contradiction against the expediency and worthiness of my dispatch. It should state that the above mentioned 500,000 ducats for expenses be disbursed from the City of Kings’ coffers, and it should also rule that I be given the above mentioned 1,000 men – many of them married – with supplies, weapons, ships and everything that I have requested and could be necessary, stating the seamen’s and the warriors’ wages, and that each one of the things that will firmly be stated in my dispatch will be clearly and distinctly expressed so as to ensure that Y.M.’s will is done and that I be allowed to take as many people as possible – apart from those previously agreed on – because that would make it possible to perform, once and for all, what otherwise would entail large financial costs and the loss of great assets, without spending more than the 500,000 ducats mentioned before. This declaration as a whole fits its purpose, considering that if in Y.M.’s eyes it has been so difficult, laborious and time‐consuming for me to find out all about this dispatch, had it not been because of my firmness, and even if I went, it still would not cost less, not only as a whole, but also in its smaller parts. Furthermore, a royal letters patent addressing all the ministers of government, justice and war, both on land and at sea, so that nobody will stand in the way of my decisions, and for the purpose of securing all the help they can give me in this great service to God and Y.M., noting that even with another similar patent that I carried with me on my discovery voyage, I found nobody either here or there willing to help me in the slightest, considering that it was as detailed and tight as it was and it will not be less so now, and I will report the causes if Y.M. so commands.
Furthermore, I request another royal letters patent stating that in the event of my death before arriving at the City of Kings, or before setting off, or while sailing to those lands, or once there, I may appoint the person who will continue this mission with all my dispatches, writings and notifications issued over a period of time, until Y.M. commands otherwise – so that the mission is not lost, for it should be neither lost nor neglected, nor should such a rightful petition be rejected. Furthermore, I beg Y.M. to help me with the costs so that I can repay the debts I incurred for this cause and to arrive at the City of Kings a bit more comfortably off, since this mission came close to failure several times because of the poverty I found myself in (you can confirm this with Alonso de Sotomayor, who knows how I fared in Panamá) due to the scarcity I experienced and to others’ terrible and long‐lasting contradictions, it is alive in Y.M.’s memory on whose account it happened, and it must be believed that it has great mysteries. Such a great construction is founded upon the Christian religion, and the firm columns upon which it will be built are God’s ministers, whose lives are as discreet as they are exemplary. Juan de Alarcón is a gentleman that Y.M. can employ as he deserves in that new Church of St. Peter, which is in dire need of such a person to establish its form of government as it should be. Such a consideration should not be disregarded because of the enormity of what is involved and there are also other greatly motivated and zealous priests ready to work in that domain of the Lord. Moreover, I am well aware that the Prior of the St. Francis Capuchins in Valencia offers 24 monks at Y.M.’s written command!
Oh Sir, it is so important that the ministers who participate in such a mission be so zealous, transparent and exemplary as we see them. For this reason I strongly beg Y.M. to appoint such a person from this order who can search for others at your convenience, giving preference to Fr. Lorenço de Pons, Fr. Ioseph de Tarraga, Fr. Lucas de Perpiñan, Fr. Ermenegildo de Monblan, Fr. Domingo de Higueras – all six of them preachers; Fr. Iuã Evangelista, Fr. Pedro de Vargas, Fr. Buenaventura de Barcelona, Fr. Severo de Tovar, who has been the driving force, all four of them priests; Fr. Vidal, Fr. Francisco de Vique, Fr. Pedro de Granolles (laymen), all of them born in these Kingdoms, whose letters I have with me where they clearly show their fervent, long‐standing wishes. I again beg Y.M. to grant me this favour, for if it is carefully considered, it seems that for such a mission God has saved such workersfor its good fortune and Y.M.’s, in keeping with my wishes. Were it possible, permission should be requested from the Nuncio or from His Holiness to administrate the sacraments, if need be. Moreover, I beg Y.M. to allow Fr. Bernardino’s participation – head nurse from St. Francis’ Convent in this village – who is in the mood to serve God in great things, together with Fr. Andres de Almeyda as his companion and for my solace. Moreover, [I request] six brothers from Iuan de Dios; first, Brs. Sebastian and Ignacio, whose words I have, so that they can found hospitals, cure the natives and our people as well in those lands. Briefly, Sir, the brothersfrom this order, whose profession is charity, serving and suffering the sick, belong in this mission. Moreover, I request Y.M. issue me with a summary certification of the account that Captain Luis Vaez de Torres sent from the Philippines to Y.M.’s State Council, reporting all his discoveries when he parted company with me, so that his contribution can be of assistance. Moreover, I request copies of Y.M.’s royal letters patent and second charter by virtue of which I made that discovery, since the Count of Monterrey kept the originals.
They can be found in the State Record dated March 31st, 1603. Moreover, for the greatest favours obtained and as payment for all the services rendered plus those I again offer myself for, I beg Y.M. to read all the documents that accompany this one and to carefully consider the great importance that I give to this mission, as well as the examples and notifications from live witnessesthat I submitted. It is my intention that God and Y.M. be truly served in all those places, as well as those peoples be truly taught and guided to the benefits that they do not know or have, and to truly defend and sustain them in peace and justice, since it is for this purpose that I suffered and persisted and I will truly work and persist until I cannot do anymore. Finally, it is befitting to consider how Our Lord and Creator gave the Western Indies to King Ferdinand the Catholic after he expelled the Jews from Spain, and how now that Y.M. has expelled the Moors, God will give Y.M. the whole unknown Southern Hemisphere, where greater extensions of land have been spotted, larger than those in the hands of all Christian Kings and Princes, the Turks and the Moors in Africa. Not only this; He promises a twofold increase in all lands, peoples, riches, and comforts from all the provinces where Y.M. rules here and there, as well as the safety of them all. For all the infinite riches of both kinds, I beg Y.M. to clearly show his greatness of spirit by sending me off, for the greatness of those missions that God puts in your hands and for other smaller ones there is strength in excess, let there be no less shown for this one; if it is as great as it sounds, it is fair; if it is famous, it is holy; if it is honourable, it is rich; if it has so much and is so convenient, its strength is to be estimated in what it deserves, which it is worthy of such means that assure the good outcomes that I desire.
Y.M., enjoy your happiness without delay, for you have so much to enjoy. May Y.M. help the cause and the man as much as he can, because searching for a man for a great cause is a necessity and sometimes cannot be found unless a great price is paid in exchange. Since Y.M. entrusts a man with the most, entrust him with the least, for the reasons I give. Accounts Tired of long roads and travails and of dealing with men and others who according to what befell me with them, it must have seemed to them that only Y.M. has power to raise them and that Y.M. does not care for anything else but the precious little that he has given them credit for and that it is only they themselves who serve Y.M. well. I arrived at this court bleating for my resources, and after I arrived here, I was asked who would report back on the funds that I received. My answer was, Sir, and still is that I have never feared nor fear them, and I report in the following manner so that they can be examined. I asked Y.M. for a small ship and Y.M.’s kindly requested the Viceroy of Perú to give me two to my entire satisfaction, and the whole dispatch to his convenience, with sailors and warriors, according to the royal letters patent. I chose two medium‐sized small ships with a small boat, and adapted them to the needs of the mission, or bettersaid, I made reasonable arrangements. I exempted warriors and sailors – who also made war – were paid the same minimum wage given to the navies in El Callao. When such discoveriestake place, it is customary to give one‐fourth and one‐ third extra pay. In that way and with such temperance I saved on expenses, and it was not for any other reason that this that it had better effects, but before it is to be believed that if the ships had been larger, dispatch would have taken longer. For that reason – leaving aside what is referred to above – it would have added to the cost and to further danger in the journey – or worse still, to being unable to set sail that year, having spent money in vain.
Because of the expense incurred to dispatch me, I did not want to lay hands on a single peso. The ships were paid by royal officials in the City of Kings, and they themselves paid people. All supplies that were delivered to me were purchased and paid by the city’s general supplier. I have decrees as well as the reports and information on discoveries, and a memorandum signed by royal officials from the port of Acapulco, to whom I handed over the ship and everything on it. God saved the other two ships and what was discovered was reported in full, with a statement that everything was prosperous and profitable, as will be seen later. Besides, they were armed in Perú to aid the Philippines, where they contributed 80 men who, had they been sent from Spain, they would have cost 80,000 ducats, and they would not have been like these – both soldiers and sailors all in one. At payment time, I had no other way out but to trust all my people and pay what they were owed in full. There was no man who was not paid. I did not receive a salary. The Chinese say that one cannot ask for anything else, and they do not deceive themselvesin money matters. I did not sell either my skills or my belongings for money. I never refused to lend what belonged to me and I supplied whatever I could without being asked. I did not provide a gambling table, nor did I allow any gambling on land and sea, and there are some that say that the devil laughs at this.
But I wonder, if the devil laughs at having evils, damages and scandals snatched off his hands – such as the fruits of gambling – will he cry for all the offences against God done by gambling day and night? I have not taken advantage of any dead or living places, nor will I be found guilty of having taken advantage of a single cent or gift worth a single maravedí. When I left Lima, I could not afford a single handkerchief and it will be seen that in that city I was recorded as having received hundreds. It was said that I received 200,000 pesos to abandon the enterprise. It will also be discovered that from the 600 lbs of pitch, only 100 were used and they cost 30 pesos on land. In that way, I left with a lot less while expenditure increased, and they want to blame it on me. In spite of having been dispatched on December 21st – the last summer day in that part of the South – I experienced bad weather. For this reason, some people grew fearful and regretful after the first squalls, and others grew anxious. I was advised that there were some who wanted to rise up in arms and much was said about it. During the journey, water was scarce, winter was coming and I was very sick during the discovery trip. At a navigators’ meeting, there was a 600‐league error in longitude that I remedied with public speeches, while the others pretended and protected me. These details should be duly noted and I should be asked about the cause, for having the authority I did not want to become my enemies’ judge before or afterwards; I did not believe myself to be fast and I defended those I considered to be courageous from the envious and helpless. I kept them busy and supported them in their tasks without showing any partiality, nor did I allow the weaker ones to be subjugated by those who pretended to be stronger than them. Regarding how I treated myself, all of those who came with me can say that a table was set twice for meals, mainly because the Admiral and members of religious orders were my guests.
I received the hardtack given to me for nine months and stowed it myself, that is why I took it all. During the whole voyage, day and night, I gave it for free to whoever wanted it, after having sorted ways to use less. It must be said that it always was healthy food and plenty of it was left over. When water was scarce, God gave us enough healthy rainwater to fill 800 earthenware jugs. When we ran out of meat, God provided an albacore shoal that followed us for 40 days and we caught over 60,000 pounds, which allowed people to eat it in abundance – both fresh and salted – until we surged between Navidad and Acapulco ports. I was the only sick person and the only person who died was an 80‐year‐old man when entering California, where a very strong Northern wind blew over four hours, exhausted the ship and produced an immense swell. On considering the events carefully, it can be seen that God gave us much more help apart from this, both on the immense empty seas and on land, which was very necessary to bring this mission to a successful end. Without all these positives, such a feat seemed impossible, in the same way as I suffered with everything that was used against me after I disembarked and which has also been used here. Back on course, I could have sailed the ship to the Philippines and to the City of Kings, clocking up more days at sea, thus increasing pays while trying to become rich myself.
It must be noted that I did not do it and that I handed the ship over at the port of Acapulco, where it departed for Manila with soldiers on Y.M.’s account. It will be found that significant savings were made and that I was solely inclined to fulfill the most important aspects to serve God and Y.M., forgoing my own wellbeing – a fact that I find incredible myself. Behold what Y.M. meant and commanded his ministersto do in his letters and what was done to heed them. Consider what Y.M. commanded me to do and what I made myself do. Behold how time and my mates behaved towards me. It must be made public that I was very much on my own and that I had very little help – not to mention the contradictions and the stumbling blocks that my aspirations encountered, plus the justified due diligence that I did, regardless of my faults. Consider carefully how far away the territoriesI went to happen to be and how much I love them, only to be questioned by this Court. Consider carefully what I gave and the hard time and dangers they will give me, more than those I experienced in 20,000 leagues of straight journey by land and sea, without my comings and goings in palaces and at the doors of Counsellors and ministers. Consider how painful and bitter it is and how I neither forget the past nor ignore the future. Look at the payments and financial help that I received in fifteen years or the loans that I received and what I owe will soon become clear. Look at the jobs or companies that I created, and the gains that many said I made will be known without even asking for the principal or the interests. Consider all I have said and how much it could have cost me in ships and journeys, in disagreements and time, in so many expensive lodgings, and what I am owed will become evident, added to the excessive numbers of people I took with me on top of those on pay, including the supplements that I contributed, when Y.M.’s royal letters patent was not heeded. Consider my truthfulness, loyalty and respect; that I am bankrupt and that I have always shown and still show zeal, and it will transpire that I have not asked for a reward in spite of so many good deeds, nor do I sell myself for the same that I offer. I was not given any instructions on what had to be done, and given such a great honour, I worked twice as much with twice as much care.
I always thought I was sent [to discover new territories] because I was credible; the truth I deal with is reassured by the authentic documents I have. If I knew that the documents I was not sent were worth so much and that, I would bring such a bundle. I offer as many documents as I am asked for, which were made by inconveniencing my friends. Y.M. can ask to check them and God’s providence will be seen. Since a lot less was said about such levels of care, everything remains unfinished, or what was done was not as good. I must advise you that I am not selling them as services and my disposition always nags me about what I can do on such matters. I also say that leaving this aside, I will not be the one to say that this mission requires hasty action, for time flies and much will be lost that will never be received, but will instead have to be paid for. What I have done in Y.M.’s name in those territories is what any good vassal would do, and as such it must be regarded and judged. It is not fair that I should stand to lose as much for those high and well founded thoughts as others have gained, for not being careful and for having applied for themselvesinflicting damage upon others. Considering these and other reasons, I would not like it if I were forced to speak more clearly, unless everything I referred to, what I will say later, what I said in other documents and what I can say in front of other men should have been exactly the opposite.
What I have to say about every matter is as much as can be believed about a cause that was tried in five tribunals and defended continuously from so many enemies – some of them heartless people – and about a man who carried everything on his shoulders to go ahead. In short, I say that if it is to be understood or believed that I made some mistakes or owe some money, or should receive physical punishment for a crime or misdemeanour or for any loss or damage I may be responsible for, or if I deserve to be reprimanded for negligence or lack of care, or for what I owe in any case, or if my hour is not lost or my truth obscured, I ask Y.M. to level charges against me, to call me to account, to find me guilty of serious or light matters, and to understand the heart of this cause and to judge each thing by itself. May Y.M. not permit it that both I and my cause be judged wholesale or that my actions remain unknown, or how I managed myself in these or other cases, or that I bear others’ enormous guilt for not disclosing names. I finally add, Sir, that what I say in my defence is everything I referred to and avoided in exchange of saying what I say about what was done in that area of Australia of the Holy Spirit, in St. Phillip and Santiago Harbours. First and with great solemnity, a Cross was erected and I took possession in the Holy Trinity’s name under the royal standard as stated in the documents in my possession.
It was there, Sir, that the Church of Our Lady of Loreto was built; twenty masses were said and the Jubilee granted on Whitsunday. It was there that the city of New Jerusalem was created in a site well worthy of its name. It was there, Sir, that there was a solemn procession on the day of Corpus Christi – the Holy Sacrament – marked by your Royal Standard, to honour those unknown lands. There, Sir, I hoisted three field flags, and in the top ones I showed the two columns by your Royal Arms – with this I can say that Plus Ultra has ended here and in the continent ahead and behind. It was there, Sir, that a very necessary order started so far away from Y.M., to such great benefit and objectives as I can show, with my eyes set on the ruins of kingdoms where principles were neglected or had no order. It is from there that I brought the two Indians, Pedro and Paulo, who died after being baptised and having become very good Christians, an event that makes me very happy because I have opened a pathway to preach Christ’s faith to such a large number of gentiles, as well as for all the benefits that this mission entail while the world exists. All of this I have done as I was told, to Y.M.’s memory and as a loyal vassal that I am. For Y.M. to claim the title of protector of that part of the world, I offer Y.M. [those territories] with what they have and what they are worth, and my only reward will be to carry [the mission] out with the utmost haste, as befits such a great service to God and Y.M., and for the good of those peoples’ souls. Y.M. will be honoured and glorified for all that and my reward will be the hard work, more than enough pay for my attempt. I finish my accounts with these very few paragraphs – even though they are not those of a great Captain. If the people who have noted them consider they are not enough, I will pay the bill for all the expenses. Then subtract one thing from the other and he who should pay must pay, or give Y.M. as much.
Sir, God’s will can be seen in this cause because it was brought into existence with almost impossible means. The Universal Vicar’s will can be seen in six briefs that he gave me in its favour. Y.M.’s will can be seen through the four royal letters patentsthat I received, with great demonstrations of the good and living wishes for it. All wise, sensible and practical men’s will can be seen and they are astonished to see its lukewarm pursuit, feeling pity that it has been risked this way, and I do not mean Satan’s will to counter mine, which I offer again with the same zeal that was always inspired in me, which should always inspire such a pious cause as this one. Believe in me, Y.M., for I do not ignore what I am owed, what the cause is worth and how much I am worth for it. Y.M., do not allow this cause to be the end of me before I can start it. The fleet is leaving.