Pedro Fernandes de Queirós was a navigator best known for his voyages of discovery in search of the great south land. He was born in Portugal in 1563 and became a Spanish subject when the countries were temporarily united in 1580.
In 1595 Queirós (Quirós is the Spanish form of his name) was appointed chief pilot of an expedition under Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira, setting out from Peru to colonise the Solomon Islands. Mendaña had previously discovered the islands in 1567 and believed they were an indicator of the great south land, but he was unable to locate the islands again during his return voyage. Instead he located the Marquesas and established a short-lived settlement on an island he named Santa Cruz. Following the death of Mendaña and many of the crew in Santa Cruz, the settlement was abandoned, and Queirós is credited with safely bringing the ships back to the Philippines despite difficult circumstances, arriving in 1596, and then returning to Spain.
In 1605, Queirós sailed from Callao, Peru, in command of his own expedition to discover Terra Australis Incognita, the great southern continent thought to exist in the Pacific. Queirós, commanded the San Pedro y San Pablo, with Luis Vaez de Torres as his second in command on the San Pedrico.
In 1606 the expedition landed on a large island which Queirós believed to be part of the southern continent. He named it Austrialia del Espiritu Santo, honouring Philip III's Austrian royal house, and claimed it for Spain, together with all of the Pacific region to the South Pole. The island, now called Espiritu Santo, is part of today’s Pacific island nation of Vanuatu.
It is not clear why the fleet then split up. Queirós returned to Mexico in one ship, and Luis Vaez de Torres sailed to Manila along the south coast of Papua New Guinea through the strait which now bears his name.
Following his return to Madrid in 1607, Queirós wrote at least 50 petitions to King Philip III of Spain describing the wonders of the land he had discovered and requesting royal support to organise a new expedition to the Southern Hemisphere.
'I say that this must be another new world that promises to be larger and populated by better peoples than America, rich for very good reasons, considering the reports and the silver , pearl samples and mother-of-pearl conches that I saw in many places during this and two other voyages, given the land 's disposition within the parallels of Peru, with a climate like that of Potosi.' Queirós memorial, 1607
Most of these petitions or 'memorials' were manuscripts, but at least 14 were printed between 1607 and 1614 at Queirós’ expense for presentation to the King and his councils.
These 'presentation' memorials - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe after the leaking of one of the original memorials – are the first, and possibly the rarest of all printed Australiana, printed in Spain in very small numbers by unknown printers. The State Library holds the largest number of printed Quirós Memorials known to exist in a single public collection - including the first memorial, printed in December 1607, acquired in 2019.
Tragically, after finally being granted permission for another expedition, Queirós died in Panama in 1615 before he could carry out his 'divine mission'.
About this item:
Second in the series of fourteen known Quirós' presentation memorials. It describes his 1605-1606 expedition in search of Terra Australis, gives a short description of his discoveries and sets forth requirements to form a settlement in the new land. 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court, the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. The Eighth Memorial 'escaped' the Spanish borders and was translated into various languages. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana.
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quiy explorationós, say: that in order to discover the unknown Southern hemisphere, as ordered by Y. Majesty, I set sail from Callao, the City of Kings’ port, on the day of St. Tome Apostle, December 21st, 1605, with two ships (150 and 120 tonnes), a landing craft, 130 people for all trades and another 22 without pay, and 6 monks from the Order of St. Francis. On October 9th, 1607, I arrived at this Court, and on December 14th, I submitted a memorial to Y. Majesty about the same trip requesting from Y. Majesty a new hasty dispatch to continue with the mission to be served to the Count of Lemos and Andrada, President of the Royal Council of the Indies. The Council appointed Francisco de Tejada as commissioner, Judge from said Council, who after listening to me carefully, instructed me to write the following summary. The substance of what I discovered consists of three parts of land with high mountain ranges, which are understood to be part of one great land mass, where we found a harbour that was twenty leagueslong from head to head, with a good port and two rivers. One of them was considered to be as big as the Guadalquivir in Seville, and we had news that there is a larger river nearby. The harbour was named San Filipe (St. Philip) and Santiago (James), because it was discovered on his day. The port was called Veracruz, for it was on that day that the ships sailed in. The whole land mass was called Australia of the Holy Spirit because that was the day it was taken possession of, under the Royal Standard whose edicts I have with me. We stayed here for thirty‐six days. We found several good supplies, and very good roots of three kinds which are eaten as very nutritious bread, many pigs, hens, wood pigeons and other birds, many coconuts, bananas, sweet canes,
and two different kinds of almond, lots of earth nuts, oranges, obos, very good large and sundry other fruits. The fish are soles, red mullets, kingfish, mullets, dogfish, pargos, other species and good waters. The people from this harbour are dark‐skinned, and before we sailed in, in the same land and nearby we saw other whiter Indians, and both groups are Gentile. A common characteristic is their large body structure; all of them cover their private parts and do not eat human flesh. Judging by the large number of bonfires and smoke that could be seen all around, we believe there are many people who are partial and not very friendly with one another. Their weapons are bows and arrows, truncheons and darts, all of them made of hard timbers; we believe there is no grass. Houses have two‐slope roofs, are constructed on timber boards and covered excessively with palm leaves, and this is where they have their meals. We did not see many towns, but we did see houses here and there. There are several fenced farms. The soil is black and soft as bread. They use earthenware pots. They have small looms and plenty of fishing nets. They castrate pigs and chicken. They trap birds, which they have in abundance, and many of them are songbirds. They carve granite and ebony, an indication that the outskirts are large extensions of land and of people policing the vicinity. They do not use large ships, which lead us to understand that is the reason why they do not need to resort to other lands. There are neither mosquitoes nor caymans, and poisonous bugs were not spotted. We saw small dogs like ours and learned about the existence of larger ones, as well as of a larger kind of cat, and of the existence of cows and buffalos. There are many nutmegs, which is a valued spice, and their pulp is valuable to make sugar. It is possible to make silk with the leaves of a tree called obo. Silver has also been spotted, though not in large amounts. It is said there are many metals. This is a land where industries can prosper because there are good spaces and many people, and it is feasible to hire from Chile, Perú, Panamá, New Spain and the Philippines. As far as I can see, I may reasonably say that such gentle, healthy and fertile soil will bear fruit. There is a range of large stones and timbers to found a very large city by the sea, by the port and by a river, on a plain and near mountain ranges and ravines, well designed to breed, plant and sow everything produced in Europe and the Indies. Judging by the disposition mentioned before, there is no livelier or more open port, with all the requisites to be considered as such, without any known disadvantage, with good space for a shipyard and deep enough to launch many ships in different directions, near a forest full of strong timbersfor curved ribs, breast hooks, high and thick masts, straight trees for planks and masts, and poles. There is no land that by itself can later sustain so many people so generously – if what has been written is considered – or has everything that this land has so close together at hand, in front of a port and so close to seven populated islands that cover two hundred leagues of apparently the same quality, or has such large and good signs to be searched for and found, without hollow spots or other accidents, almost half way to known populated islands and an apt port of call. I have not seen any in my voyages or had any such news. This land is 1,700 leagues away from the City of Kings, 1,300 from Acapulco and 1,100 from the Philippines. Its height is between 15 and 17 degrees, and we may expect twice as much at 20, 30 and 40 degrees. I say that even if it is no better than what has been seen, it mainly is worth populating; otherwise it would be impossible to discover the remaining territories, or gain any insight into so many varied things. Without considering the above mentioned territories,sixteen other islands were discovered at 10, 12, 13 and 14 degrees, and at different distances. Five of them are populated and it is assumed that another four we could not sail to are populated as well. The remaining seven are desert islands, and the first one was discovered from El Callao after thirty‐six days of navigation. The Indians from Taumaco Island gave us news of more than 60 major and minor islands populated by black people, by whites with very long and very blond hair, by mulattos and by Indians – people like the one we saw now. In a large part of those territories, there are fifteen islands where pearls can be found, where mother‐of‐pearlshells were seen both in this and another trip, as well as some pearls. It is to be believed that they did not create themselves, nor did those men – that land, that silver or the rest of the things I saw. They also mentioned there is a mainland, and it is understood to be the same as what we saw. After he learned how to make himself understood in our language, Pedro, the Indian that I brought from those areas, corroborated what was said, and gave us news of very large pearls and of large shells capable of housing them, and of very beautiful white women that cover themselves with thin cloaks. He also gave us news of that large land and of a very good port, of great rivers, high mountain ridges, many people, many kinds of food, and a large number of nutmegs. I say that even if Pedro and the other Indians had not given us such news, by necessity there have to be many large populated territoriesto the East and West of those I saw, as well as an unknown five‐thousand league long territory at eighty degrees of latitude. In short, there is a quarter of the whole Globe to be discovered there. I refer to documents on all this, and to a committee of mathematicians and practical people, for apart from what was said before, there is a lot to be said and noted, and we can find out there.
It should be mentioned that experience has shown that in low‐lying areas – both in the North and South – abound all kinds of riches, and that these can and should be expected from the lands I am writing about, not only from the news and clear indications but also because that area is parallel to Perú, with the good disposition of its high mountain ridges. In His secret judgment, I suppose that God has shown us so many good lands in order to speak, to do and to venture into, and that in Perú there is an excess of men and this is a very good opportunity for them. In many places, there are many great soldiers, and they are people who can sustain themselves on very little and can make use of very much. There are also many ships equipped with what is necessary for sailing, and there are many good supplies from different sources whose durability I have experimented. The weather, the wind and the journey from El Callao to those lands is known to us, and for this reason I say (always from the best point of view on everything) that at present it is convenient to organise this journey from the City of Kings and nowhere else, because its port is two leagues long – greatly convenient for what is required – and the most that can be offered at the time of dispatch. After this is understood, Sir, the first thing that has to be done is to raise a thousand men because there is plenty to assign them to, plenty to sustain them with and plenty to accommodate them in. Many of them should be married and all of them will go without earning a wage, with the sole exception of sailors, who will receive pay for eight or more months. A hundred sailors that will remain on land will be paid for a year and there will also be ship carpenters and caulkers. Ships will be needed to take these one thousand men with enough supplies for a year, increasing the need of hardtack and flour for longer. Two small boats to lead the way at nighttime whenever necessary, and after reaching port they may be sent out to make discoveries. Some artillery, a few muskets and several reinforced arquebuses with gunpowder for two or three years, and as much rope as necessary for a year, for there is plenty that can be used to make more over there. Also, some spears, spiked sticks and a few round shields, because it is possible to make more over there. Many one‐hand axes, butcher knives and mountain machetes, plus hats, screens (mosquito nets) and rope‐soled sandals for the soldiers. A large amount of iron planks and every kind of tool for factories, plants, sown fields and mines; sets of nails, oakum, tar and sails to build two large ships later and load them with everything the earth offers, later to be sent to Lima and to Mexico for the purpose of building other ships and brigs to start the transport. Some cattle and thoroughbred stock. Two mills or stills in case it becomes necessary to desalinate seawater in the way I have already done it. On land they will serve the purpose of extracting wine out of palms, and they can also be used to make salt if need be. Two copper ovens and other implements made of this metal, and more iron for ordinary service. Vests, underpants and taffeta skirts in the colours of China. Bells, necklaces and other garmentsto wear and to please the Indians, as well as for bartering with them. Twelve or more discalced monks from the Order of St Francis, four of them well learned in church wardrobe and ornaments, and four small bells. A doctor and two surgeons so that one of them can go to what is on offer, pharmacy medications and John of God brothers to cure the sick and to start hospitals. Y.Majesty’sroyal letters patents to perform all the above mentioned must be very clear, strongly worded and unlimited, for whatever else that can be offered for a good dispatch. There must be other patents addressed to all the ministers in Y. Majesty’s government, justice and war, both on land and at sea, from East to West, both for coming and going, and for other events that may occur in this mission. They should stipulate punishments to pay for all the damages befalling due to delays or other causes, be it in the service of God, Your Majesty, Royal and private assets, plus everything that is my part and right. They should state a manner and form on how the punishment should be executed. They should be free and respond to this Royal Council, and should include other points to protect me against the dangers I have run so many times on the good service of Y. Majesty, because none of them have been greater or more ordinary. Once the service of God has been done, and that the ships and people have arrived at that St. Philip and Santiago (St. James) Harbour, later on and always with mature counsel in every respect, a square and strong house will be built, surrounded by a fence, by one of the two rivers, so that people can take shelter in it. The necessary supplies should be available for sustenance. A large area should be sown with corn and rice, and many other of our pulses, seeds and roots, which are very good. Burning such sown area should not be allowed, nor pruned with the same ease as the others. For this purpose, there is excellent cleared land near the Indians’ own. We will rescue as many pigs as possible and breed them on our own. Then we will use very soft and diligent methods over and over again to secure the Indians’ friendship – in the first place that of their leaders – and once they are happy, and having experienced fair, faithful and lasting treatment from us,
impressing upon them that it is a serious crime to slay one of us, I am certain that we will achieve what we aspire to and desire: to attract them to the knowledge of God, and to obey the Holy See and Y. Majesty. Other important matters: to feel the pulse of the seasons, to soak the earth through, to unravel its secrets and greatnesses, to understand the inhabitants’ way of life, to tour the coasts and the nearby islands from East to West. After having achieved a deep understanding and relationship, using the news given by the Indians as well as the current state and form of government, all the samples that can be searched for and found with diligence, and one of those natives, different notices will be sent at different times to Lima and Mexico, so that Y. Majesty remains fully informed and can order to remove or add whatever is convenient, so that this mission can be continued and finished in such a way that the present becomes magnificent and that the future can be expected to be substantially better. I remind Y.M. that the most insignificant things were discovered little by little, that this factory is very big, and that nothing can be built all at once, and that what will be done over there cannot be dictated from here if everything is under control. Supposing that the service to God has been done, should this mission achieves the state described before, and should there be a just manner – though this cannot be stated in the present – for how much these people could or should contribute to our people as fief for all the due obligations on our part towards them, it seems that such benefits will befell later than expected without this means. In each of the cities to be founded, it is possible to divide revenue and lands in such a way that God Our Lord and Lord of everything receives the largest share. What I mean is that in the present and the future there will be churches, convents, hospitals, widows, orphans and maidens to marry off, poor inhabitants to sustain, many other needs to meet and many affairs to direct, help, preserve and increase – in other words, the fourteen works of mercy. It can be of great help owed to the natives if we looked for the most effective way to help them leave behind the blindness they live in, without the divine light of the Holy Gospel, so as to make sure that entering such a sea of compassion does not drown them and they can navigate it smoothly and prosperously until they surge into such a life and death that the Church prays for them, and Y.M. is honoured and glorified for what was done, and the way they will assure their temporal part in such a manner as it has never been theirs, and for which they were speedily taught how to work and for us not to stay idle, nor can it later be said that we are trying to make someone tired in order to rest ourselves, and to make sure that they will not die of sadness or mistreatment, nor of the haste that our greed can give them. In short, how to hastily become second Spaniards in all policy related matters and in the enjoyment of another thousand advantages. It can be made public that all the people who want to go and become deserving of that population by being honourable, and to make use of their consciousness and mine securely, since I am the one who persuades and considering that this will be the basis of such a mission, I limit myself to what I can say or write. It can be made public that in order to make Y.M. a greater lord there and to make use of his Royal monies in such a way that Y.M. will never have to pay a salary to any of his ministers, nor to anyone in the Republic, to facilitate agreement I finally say that I would like three different occurrences, as follows: shutting the doors completely to idleness and being rigorous against it (in the same way as there will be openness and frankness to virtue) with great prizes, in the same way as works of charity will be abundant and performed with fervour. The City of Kings and Mexico should be looked at with great attention. Both of them are said to have more than 150,000 inhabitants including the natives. It should be noted that these natives could be called outsiders and that the ten or twenty‐thousand Spaniards are rich and have secured a good or at least reasonable standard of living. Then, those 130,000 (or as many as they were) should be considered. They have neither a leg to stand on nor guidance. One should rightly wonder on whose account are the dangers that so many people run, without any assets, controls or moderating influences, to whose faults do the ones go while the others rush. They are a force to be stopped, or else it will crash against a hard wall, either today or tomorrow, and this, either in a dissolute life, or in a life at fault, or in a sick life, where everybody runs the risk of losing either their soul, or their insight, or of earning their suffering, or of dying of pure hardship, or if such hardship damagestheir health, added to all these damages that disfigure a Republic, born from disorder, with the possibility of there being less damages and more benefits when we seek to do good by means of good order. This mission is the greatest in the present and in the future. I advise Y.M. that I fear it will end before it even starts. I mean to say that Y.M.’s greatness would increase so long as he becomes the ruler of more well acquired and governed peoples sustained in peace and justice. I note that those who know well say that the decline in the Western Indies stemmed mostly from the fact that the system of granting land and native inhabitants to a settler was discontinued, and that such settlers took advantage of it too hastily. I also concur that if Y.M. had those thirty million natives that were found at the beginning, there would be twice as much wealth and that the potential fortunes would be assured, and the warning that if Indians are wanted, there are no monies; that there are no Indians for ten years and that silver and gold are not the worst losses, for there have been innumerable others, that those existing today are priceless and that the future can only be remedied by God.
I remind Y.M. that a good, fulfilled and very timely dispatch is of the essence to start such a great mission, that true help will secure what was done, and that with just laws and holy institutions it is possible to open a brief and secure pathway to create a Republic in those territories (which can be called concerted) and that it will be created by real and substantial men, so that they can think ahead and leave their secure possessions here in order to populate, pacify, defend and sustain others’ territories, great favours and honours. Generosity and freedom are very necessary, based on the granting of land and natives to individual settlers, all the while preventing their owners from saying that they are masters of Indians, for it is possible to give every one of them their due by banishing forced personal service and allowing voluntary service. With all these favours, Y.M. will earn everybody’s goodwill, both Spaniards and Indians, in a way that later it may be said that such a great part of the world was acquired for such a small price, securing both the spiritual and temporal good, as many as there are and can be in this mission, on which there is so much to say, to consider and to organise, rather than otherwise. Without much objection, it should be said that this mission will not exist with all that has not been believed in or helped for so many years and that Our Lord, to whom we owe our thanks, removed it from Satan’s claws. For all of that, and with the utmost humility and trust, I beg Y.M. to organise my dispatch to sail in the first galleons, and to hasten the settlement of such great and worthy territoriesthat Y.M. sent me to discover. I remind Y.M. that lives are short and that time flies, that much can be lost in riches, and that a loyal, faithful, truthful and diligent man who understands what I request is highly worthy and cannot be found every day, is even more worthy if he has nothing to hide, loves the mission, and can suffer, persist and seek justice. There is a handwritten note on the left margin of the page: "(...) and of service of the relationship of the new discovery and things that the ( ...)for its population."
About this item:
Third 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. The Eighth Memorial 'escaped' the Spanish borders and was translated into various languages. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana. This third presentation memorial provides five reasons rebutting objections against settling in the Austral Lands. They being defence needs of the Spanish empire, financial resources, money already spent, focus of conversions on South America and the lack of Spanish migrants. A very rare foundation document of Australia.
My Lord, After I discovered the unknown Southern territories, mainly since I wanted them to be populated, being one thing and the other very convenient and necessary, an obligation in the service of God and Y.M., and for the good of the natives’ souls, I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, always heard certain reasons against them, especially the following five, which are of such nature that it seems that Satan looked for them so surreptitiously for his purposes that a war was declared against them on a continuous basis. The first one, Sir, is that Y.M.’s monarchy is very extended and it is not possible that being its dependence upon this Court so necessary, it could be easy to rule, therefore it would be more appropriate to increase the possessions in the Indies to preserve whatever is left – and that would not happen if new lands were discovered, putting all of them in danger. On this I can only say, Sir, that if the small extension of our Spain is measured, what will be found is that if we consider its totality, it will amount to the same as comparing a little fingernail to a whole human body, and for this reason it is worth considering how such a small portion of land with so very few natives worked so many and such great wonders in so many far away lands. It should be pointed out that now when the government – lifeblood of all possessions – is questioned, it appears that Our Lord desires to show how much can be done with so little, and that by force He wants Y.M. to rule and sustain more than two-thirds of the world, because He is showing the new and I am pleading for that great territory of yours that was concealed, hence the increased obligation to accept that so much was lost through delay, but that so much can be gained through promptness. I beg Y.M. to make use of what God gives you through my industriousness and faithfulness, remembering the many benefits. Even earthly Princes may feel angered if the rewards they grant are not considered, and if the favours they do – however small – are not willingly received.
For all these reasons, as well as for those I do not say, I effectively implore Y.M. to forgive my insolence and receive my good will if I bring to your attention that it would be unimaginable to let go of the smallest part of the lands conquered in the Indies, for the mere utterance of such a thought is frightening and offensive, considering that all Y.M.’s vassals must give their assets and lives to defend and preserve such a gift from God, who could have given it to others; and at the same time that the lands I discovered are estimated as much as their excellencies deserve, who are as deserving as my suffering and insistence on not deserting those lands that deserve the strength of my pursuits and persuasions, born from the certainty that it is of the highest importance to populate them before others do. Were that to happen, it must be said that the damages and the losses would be incalculable and would have no remedy, as I have expressed before, as well as the great love I offer myself in their service for free, warning and reminding that if Columbus’s proposals and others of a similar nature had not been admitted or executed and that everything that was done were still to be done, including the service to God, and Y.M. were not king in so many parts of the world, and now without adding the one mentioned before which has so much promise both for heaven and earth, and without giving men of letters a reason to sing to such greatnesses that illustrate Spain so much and make it so enviable. I also remind you that millions of inconveniences and difficulties that I experienced so often did not wear me down, even though I was always so lonely and contradicted, devoid of means and short of money, and if only one of them defeated me, I did not defeat so many, nor did I say what was done, which I estimate even more than if I owned the two richest provinces in Asia, China and Persia. In short, Sir, I went ahead, trusting God, and for this very reason I even conquered bad will. If Y.M. dares to attempt such a great feat, for all that Y.M. is worth, all your kingdoms and possessions are very few, and for my spirit what is not known about the world is not too much in order to discover and to disentangle it and to give it to Y.M. so that he can give it to God, who is the owner of everything, and for God it would be very possible from a smaller place than Spain and further away to govern a million worlds, had He created them as He would have been able to, than to leave those lands deserted, for it sounds like mistrust, which is what should be feared the most, and it must be believed that Y.M.’s monarchy will not end by rendering such an extreme and unique service to God, but it is to be expected that it will be doubled this time and redoubled later, and everything will last together till the end of the world, but God can do much more. Sir, the second reason is that it is said that Y.M. is very poor, and that is why it is not possible to go to the expense required by the population in those great, good and rich territories that I discovered, therefore they should stay as they were in their darkness – it would be a great pity if that were the case, God forbid that would happen because of my sins.
My response to this is that God Our Lord made Y.M. the richest King and Lord in the world. I can prove it because in the Provinces of America, Y.M. has more than two thousand leagues of mines that fill so many fleets, navies and galleons with gold, silver, pearls, emeralds and other valuables, and so many large ships come from the East laden with the most precious goods that nature has created there, as well as with others of great value. Africa, Brazil and the islands in the ocean give all the wealth in them. I do not include what the Kingdoms of Spain, Naples, Sicily, Sardinia and the provinces of Lombardy and Flanders yield, as well as others where Y.M. is the lord. I plead with whom it may concern to consider that such a rich and powerful King and Lord such as Y.M. to ensure that with all the surpluses from riches such as those that God bestowed upon Perú only to spend a minimum amount of money to justify your cause, for based on what I saw I promise returns of one hundred by one, two hundred and double based on the news and on what I presume. My intention is not to persuade or obligate Y.M. with this, but only by remembering the King Our Lord in heaven when it was suggested you should let go of the Philippines because their stateliness produces more expense than benefit. You replied that if there was a shortfall in Mexico, the most fortunate in Spain would cover it so that the conversion of those peoples would not stop or be lost. Besides, with the most active charity at the expense of so much wealth, you endeavoured to impose the preaching of the Gospel and the teaching of the copious number of peoples discovered. Those whom I request teaching for, and many more that live in the unknown part, also fall within the protection of Y.M., and Y.M. sent me to discover them and they have been discovered, and without either ministers of God or the knowledge of who their Divine Majesty is, given that the remedy is so far away, it may be too late if this occasion is missed with the obligation that Y.M. has of not deserting them, because if God lead us there, it is not without a cause, and there could be no powerful cause that forces Y.M. to let go of them, and it is for a reason that my will is so strong after having been so ill-treated. In short, Sir, God’s providence is limitless and it has never deserted those who trust His Divine Majesty rather than human means. Considering who you are, Y.M., and whatever is convenient for Your Royal Greatness, mainly at the hour of God’s glory, you will aid those infinite peoples as you can and must, because of who you are and for your possessions.
I believe that the briefest, the longest and the clearest this favour is, which I request only once, the greatest, fastest and surest the benefits that can be expected from it, both in those places as much as here. When Y.M. becomes as poor as it is rumoured, I say that in the manner I described before, Y.M. will become very rich and that the sun will never set in Y.M.’s lands, and it is not fair that strength is lacking only to acquire kingdoms and to help my wishes. It is said that the Indies did not cost a single royal peso: I say that this is the greatest damage that they have suffered, suffer and will continue to suffer, the reason why the first ones set their hearts on financial benefits without scruples; gold and silver are earth and they are mortal men who would have done the right thing if they had had any knowledge and if they had settled their three due accounts: with God, with themselves and with their fellow men. In that way, there was an excuse for the violent and disarrayed principle that brought them to the Indies and that brought the Indians to their current pitiful state. As an example, I tightly note that to populate those great and important territories, this time no resources should be spared, nor should Y.M. trust other people’s expenditure, so that the fate of these Southern Indies will not be like that of the Western ones. The third reason is, Sir, the feeling stirred by the fact that Y.M. spent one hundred and eighty-four thousand ducats to dispatch me. My answer is that even though this small sum that Y.M. ordered to spend on such a general and illustrious mission may seem excessive, what was spent must seem meagre, for the extra two-thirds that I was allowed to spend without going beyond Y.M.’s orders, as can be seen in them. The money spent was supposed to arrive from Spain in the galleons that were lost with Luys Fernandez de Cordova. It must be pointed out that it should not be called expenditure but a loan granted to vassals, so that they would be of service in the same way as they were of service to Y.M. I say loan because when soldiers and sailors receive their pay, they take those monies to merchants, and merchants to customs, and after two round trips, they find their way back to the coffers. It remains to be established how many royal resources were squandered in the Indies – a loss to regret – but not in those days because they acquired the vast territories I discovered.
How many thousands of men and millions in gold were lost at sea, and how many millions and men were spent on attempts or on conquering small posts? How much silver and gold is spent on so many things that are not of the same value as this one? How many riches find their way out of these kingdoms and never return to them? How much is the most I can fairly say, for I can only see weeping for such a small sum that was better spent than others; if it came to Spain, it would also be spent, and the one I am asking for is about to come from the Indies. In short, I say that in order to reap, one must sow and benefit, and in order to gain, one must spend and risk. Y.M., I beg you to risk very little to gain millions in honourable, profitable and glorious things. After dealing with this mission, it would not be excessive if I attempted to acquire and own [riches] in the same manner that others have profited from the Philippines race, the benefits of which I have seen, tried and given up this time. For this reason I am so aware that he who lacks money has faults in excess and more, that I persuade Y. Majesty to spend on his work. The fourth, which is where the devil makes his mark because the main profit pursued is, Sir, the conversion of these peoples. Many were discovered in Perú, New Spain and other places, with more living obligations to be led to the heavens than those others that have been recently discovered or are yet to be discovered. I say, Sir, to all those persons that have said what I referred to before, who know where those lost souls are, and whose sense of charity is such that pain oozes from their perdition, that they should take their remedy on your account, acting as their Guardian Angel, that I assure you it will not weigh heavily upon my shoulders, nor will I stop helping them, nor will it look wrong to the rest of the world and many more will leave mine, so much farther away than I saw there and are there, and they are all in danger and experiencing the same harm until they receive the news of Christ’s law, upon which their greater good starts. Since I, with twice as much joy, always accept the search of all of them, no matter how far away and isolated at sea they are. In this way and persistent others, each one of us will show the piety we preach as much as possible, and we will make the Almighty the known, believed in, adored and served Lord of the peoples, and He so commands and wishes – and it should be done. I fervently beg that it will hurt to learn that they will be lost and that their price is minimal, and it should be remembered that it is the work of Charity not to be content with very little, and that so long as there is matter, it will always want to act, for I confess that with all the opposition I find, together with my own faults, that if I gave up on defending my cause or did not follow it, or if I delayed it for a day, I should understand that the morning after I can expect a very bitter retribution, both physical and spiritual.
The Preachers who are to convert those peoples will not become (as I have heard) lambs thrown to the wolves to be killed, but with mature counsel and great trust in God they will be shepherds with greyhounds and faithful mastiffs to guide and defend so many tame sheep from the infernal wolves that their souls carry, keeping a watchful eye so that what I have seen does not happen there: dead sheep, its keepers left with nobody to care for, and shepherds without a trace of sorrow for this. The fifth reason is, Sir, what many say: if God had never wanted the Indies to be discovered, because only for the love of them Spain is losing inhabitants, and has become poor and expensive, and that in bygone days one of her Greatest would be pleased to wear honest cloth and that now he wears silks and brocades, and costly jewellery, serves with gold and silver, and that with the money that is brought from them [the Indies] they rise and many of them who were not men before become such, and they cry their misfortunes when they could easily return to rough sackcloth. My reply to this is that it was not without a cause that many foreigners say that all the Spanish Indies hurt their eyes, which can be seen in their works. There are some who say that they should be used properly [the Indies] and treated as they deserve, for it is no reason to feel bad to have discovered such a great multitude of peoples and riches, and to have found goods of both genders in such remote and well understood Provinces, whose worst ill has been that Y.M. has not lived in any of their two centres to put them both in the reason they do not have, whose past and present ruin, as well as what lies ahead for their natives is what should have been cried for. The rest can be avoided and such a great part of the world can be secured now in order not to miss out. If not, in two years – and one has already gone – without any monies, and later on it will be decided whether Spain can live without the Indies, or the Indies without Spain, or if all the silver and gold ingots that for so many years they have paid were counted, it would be discovered that all Y. Majesty’s palaces could all be made of silver and gold, and the patios and plazas could be paved in those metals and filled as well. The territories in question do not promise less, nor can I see others that could redeem Spain, for all the rest are about to be laid bare.
Our Lord created more lands and peoples than those in Spain, and if those that I saw there and that I wish would receive the benefits of the Catholic Church that Y. Majesty defends, God having given so many men, monies, comforts and whatever is necessary to render such service, promising great returns in spiritual and temporal gifts, and having me as a vassal who pleads so much, there is no desire to rescue them for any of the suggested reasons or for others (whatever they may be), I say that God has created all those souls that cost the redemption of Christ’s blood, passion and death – Christ Our Lord, Man and God, who knows and can do what He wants – it may be that for not losing one of them, He will look for a shepherd to entrust all of them with, to feel for them and to do whatever it takes, and not only to spend monies to look for them but also to protect them from the wolves, as the Gospels say. My Lord, I finally say that there are merchants who content themselves only by earning a ten or twenty percent only from their work, and once they recoup their investment they are glorified, and many who consider themselves well served even if they lose all they have. There are also others who even if they see an increase in their gains flee from them, and several others who, fearing their whims, do not dare to employ their coins, and some others who spend them all when in doubt. There are also hungry merchants who never tire of earning thousands and millions. Likewise, in the worst of cases there are contractors who are happy to cause small damage, whereas others would employ all their strength and that of others that cannot be numbered, as it happens in this case, and I am not horrified by what I said, but by what has not been done, as I have experienced, and even more so, because from long ago in this miserable world there have been those who knew much and erred much, and had infinite regrets while others reaped the benefits of what they did not want to do. It is not for this that I give up hope, Sir, but it actually increases when I read, hear, see and consider that the great good deeds have always had powerful enemies who were proud of it, and I feel reassured that the holier, more courageous and greater they are, the bigger the web that the Devil creates, and the more resources he creates to finish them, or at least to sever the largest possible part.
I am also certain that the higher this mission is in the service of God, the lowest miseries I have encountered and I always encounter wherever I go – or to express it better, the terrible and outrageous storms that both of us have weathered and that God has delivered us from. I expect that your great power will secure what is missing, though most of the ports have been seized by the devil. The less of my strength has been employed to win so many battles, the greater the proof that God loves this mission. May Y.M. believe in me who only wants the greater good, and that if I had wanted money from this mission, or from anything else, I would not have spent what I had, or let go of such good chances as those I let go of, so as not to owe you a single hour and not to risk the smallest of your possessions, without growing tired of persuading and pleading, or asking my due great prize, or taking charge of the expedition as was pointed out, or profited from the goods, which I do not seek, because I am aware of how false they are, and even more so, without doing much if I had made attempts and had continued this great mission with plenty of gold ingots, or with great favours from men, or if I had been so well received and helped by them, or if I had had high hopes that not only did I forget the past and present hardships, but also dared to fight against those awaiting me, nor if it were now a great fact that, on the beaches of the lands I discovered, God had given me millions in gold, silver, pearls, and in their benefit I did not spend a single resource. It is resources that I am asking for – that Y.M. spend only once, on account of all the benefits that God will provide in those territories, as well as of the many that he has given before and continues to give in Perú, to render such a great service. It is all too little for what such a mission deserves. If I could (whatever it takes, including my life), Sir, I would be privileged to do it on my own. I ask Y.M. to be dispatched, and I remind you that the fleet will soon set sail.
About this item:
Fourth 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. The Eighth Memorial 'escaped' the Spanish borders and was translated into various languages. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana. In the fourth Presentation Memorial "Quirós makes 5 points in favour of establishing a settlement in the Austral Lands: (i) their great extent, population, fertility, fruits, etc.; (ii) the innumerable native population, whose conversion to the Christian faith should be a first carte; as also the untold wealth in gold; (iii) that from the Indies and especially from Peru, where there is a superfluity of people, a sufficient number could be secured to form a settlement; (iv) that the possession of all these lands and the propagation of the Christian Faith belongs by right to the king; and (v) that the Austral Lands form a quarter part of the world - and he adduces the testimony of the letter of Luis Váez de Torres to support his arguments..." (Kelly).
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, who on Your Majesty's command went and discovered lands in the unknown Austral part, say that having just arrived from them to this Court, I gave Your Majesty a brief that Your Majesty committed to the Count of Lemos, President of the Council of the Indies, and that appointed Francisco de Tejada, Esq., from the same council, who after granting me all the Audiences I asked him for, and having listened to me with great attention, commanded me to summarise and to put down as I did the second brief that I submitted to Your Majesty, and that was in turn submitted to the very same Count of Lemos, and up until now he has taken no resolution about my case. This delay has made me suffer greatly, and each wait adds a century to each cause, all of which are very just ones and request brevity. I thought that in order to justify myself, I should organise the accompanying brief below. I plead Your Majesty to read it, so that no part of it will remain inadvertently overlooked, and Your Majesty shall see how important my dispatch is, in the form that I have requested it, and I remember that it has been over a year since I stepped into this Court having brought in the most joyous news to this day, with the promise of riches, for there are no more quarters in the whole Globe to be discovered than the one I have discovered myself. Firstly, since Your Majesty sent me to discover the lands that God had the grace to show me, such enormous and populated fertile zones, and with so many comforts for human life and also of great promise, as can be seen on its coasts in passing, and considering the news that their natives gave on its wealth – gold, silver and pearls, in more abundance and quality than has been seen so far, together with spice nuts, pepper, cinnamon, ginger, sugar, indigo, silkworm, and all the others that your disposition assure – plus the ones that industry can give since there are so many more things that I do not mention, as well as so many kinds of timber which are so necessary in Perú for ships that cost Your Majesty so much. To sum up, these are the kind of lands that can be spoken highly of, redeemed and rested in. Secondly, since they need a degree or force to be populated by Spaniards before they become so by the enemies of the Church, and since Your Majesty has been informed of their existence, together with all that has been pointed out, including one of the best stopover and ports, fit for inhabiting as well.
Your Majesty rules over the provinces of Perú, New Spain, the Philippines and others, in all of which a round trip can be made infinitely. I warn that there is no navigation that can be said to be too far or too difficult for those who look for the best comfort, as has been shown by the English and the Dutch, for without fear of any danger or weather inclemency, they have cut across the Arctic Circle and have come very near the pole, and with thick and costly naval power they have populated islands and outskirts, and have evidently perpetrated what in Your Majesty’s service would be deemed totally unsuitable. It could very well be that those and other smaller and poorer nations – if they were to see those land extensions and riches – would not love them as they would deserve, and that for this and other causes, we should set foot in them, as well as protect them with such strength that they will never be taken from Your hands, even though thousands of men and millions in gold are not spared to secure them, and for other reasons that it is not convenient for me to write as I feel them. Thirdly, and not less strongly, My Lord, if such population were occupied by the very many Spaniards that overpopulate the Indies – especially in Perú – that would cut the thread of certain damage that is feared for a very good reason: because it has been attempted so many times, and I warn that even if it were to take place, the very first thing that would befell is that Spain would lose its millions in gold that came from there, for one, two and as many years as such damage would last. In the second place, the remedy would not be as costly and impossible as we are led to understand, and I would like to remind you that it is worthwhile to earn with very little expense, once and for all, those new and immensely big lands to keep the Americas safe and to accommodate Spain, because as it appears – according to the present state – that on peace and on war depends their preservation, that the Indies are preserved, and because of this, it is not convenient for Your Majesty to lose such a good opportunity as the one you have within your reach, and allow me remind you that what is looked for and not found counts as a loss that cannot be purchased at a high price, and how little regret and repentance are worth afterwards.
Fourthly, since Your Majesty holds all the rights to those lands for the administration of faith, and in all conscience Your Majesty cannot leave the newly discovered peoples without any ministers of God, for in their absence all those souls will be lost on Your Majesty's account, and even more so because it seems that these are the ones about whom Christ Our Saviour said that there were other sheep that He had who did not belong to His flock, and that it would be convenient to bring them in so that they may hear His Voice, and so that they will become a flock with a shepherd. Since the joyously remembered Roman Pontiff Clement VIII approved of and encouraged said cause on his part, and in order not to lose such glorious triumph for the Catholic Church, if Your Majesty accepts this proposal, considering it is not to His dislike or against His greatness and royal authority to continue a deed of such piety and mercy, and of so many other highnesses and excellencies, to spend some monies once on God's work, such as what God has given in Perú, or wherever the work starts, since God has put it in Your Majesty’s hands. May I say that to such mercy and faith we owe all good tidings, and with it all the peoples will confess that even though there would not be such good convenience, there would be more than a million greater difficulties represented by the Devil, and in spite of them, it is Your Majesty's wish to render such great services, whose return is to populate, penetrate and enjoy the benefits of such a good portion of the Globe, and once there, to start up so many beneficial and willing things – as well as others that are so necessary and inescapable – that in the documents granted by Your Majesty it means the highest honour and glory to the Almighty Lord, the salvation of so many millions of souls and so many public benefits, and in short, the avoidance of so many and such immense damages while making such copious profits from the infinite spiritual and temporal benefits that in this case would be contained within the duration of this world, of all which will earn Your Majesty fame on earth and a prize in heaven, and bring uncertainty upon all those who have said that there would be a decline at this time, with God showing that Your Majesty can double the monarchy and add the title of the Indies and part of Australia of the Holy Spirit later. Fifthly, since it cannot be comprehended within either the Christian or political state – having the possibility to make such a win – to experience such a loss, as well as that of a man of such good will, practical and proven in all the cases related to what I ask for. I have known how to fight and persist trusting only in God, with so very many dangerous and rigorous things that I will not mention.
I have been represented in twenty thousand leagues of land and sea, during almost fourteen uninterrupted years, to end the disputes with men's wills – so difficult to win and to reduce – with the sole purpose of liberating forgetfulness and bringing to such good condition as it is part and parcel of such a great cause of which I am not only not the owner, but also I have not received or asked for pay. I should warn that without it I aspire to achieve its due accomplishment with soft and justified methods. And finally, and considering who Your Majesty happens to be, you would be good enough so as to make sure that I receive an order to go back to work in the service of God and of Your Majesty, until the very end of my life. All that I have referred to regarding greatness, population, riches and goodness of the lands I am informing you about consists of samples and information that I have, as well as of news I received, of speeches that I have made and of those that can be made. Since Captain Luys Báez de Torres wrote to Your Majesty from the Philippines that he contributed to having explored a great number of islands and more than eight hundred leagues of coast that I have also seen with the ship Almiranta and with the Zabra I am in charge of, having experienced the loss of only one man. In that way, it must be believed that even if that long coast does not extend further than the eye can see, its body must have a shape, triangular, square or any other, and for this reason it must be worth three to four, or more than a thousand leagues, without the islands. And it should be noted that everything that has been said goes from fifteen to less degrees, and that the Captain says that it would take over ten years to explore as much land as he saw along that way only: I say that considering the hidden part so worthy, and for other reasons, it should be believed that there can be twice as much, or even four times as much, and perhaps more land extensions which are within the confines of the Torrid and Temperate Zones in the Southern Hemisphere, and that they have not been forgotten by their Creator, with all their very many creatures, for when circumstances became dire and I became disconsolate due to the dark dangers in which I found myself, God sent a joyous and important new light in my direction.
I would like to remind Your Majesty that of all the battles that I have won among friends, I have so far only acquired live enemies, continuous hard work and regrets, serving and suffering without pay, my property and life totally spent, and my soul two thousand and seven hundred pesos in debt incurred for supplying all the necessary things to serve Your Majesty, and which I had to pay for because such were the conditions stated in a document issued by Your Majesty that was given to me for such purpose. I never found anybody who wanted to comply with it, and I would not want to be forced to show Your Majesty how laborious my history was, and to make my complaints, with the warning that the most important – that which really itches and hurts me – is to learn how many possessions would be lost while this case takes place, and how little it is that hurts so much to lose. For all of the above, I implore Your Majesty to inform the Council of the Indies and to take a resolution regarding my case as soon as possible, since I deserve it on account of my patience and constancy, and – apart from this – for the main reason, which is what is due to God and to so many souls, and because Kingdoms, riches and glories do matter to Your Majesty. And in order to put an end to my demand, I beg Your Majesty to consider what the discoverers of the past were worth and to adjust the prizes that they received for their hard work to what mine is worth, and that I receive what I deserve, and the rest – my industry and my life – I will gladly give without any expectation of reward, and I will surely sign it. I will do more if that is required of me, even though that may involve selling myself for a price: I request a small ship be bought with my part and that it be handed over to me with twelve Capuchin monks, for they are moving, and in the name of those from Barcelona, the friar Father Severo de Tobar has been offered, as stated in a letter that was written on this matter to the Chief Officer of Castile, and another one addressed to me.
I will show them the very rich mines of souls I have seen there, and who have been there for such a long time expecting the mercy of God. Otherwise, I beg you to give me the light of all that it is doubted or repairs against what I have asked, so that I can find the way to proceed and reach a solution to this case, of which it is possible to speak and write in such a manner that those alive today or the coming generations will not ask how Your Majesty has left such immense and worthy lands deserted, even more so having me as vassal, because of all I have said and done and I am saying, I intend to act upon with the good intention and wish that so many good souls are won and not lost. Otherwise, I request Your Majesty's permission to write to the Pontiff or to go to Rome in order to implore him to intercede with Your Majesty for the expediency of my dispatch, or tell me clearly what will not be granted, so that I can give up the pain of such denial. If not, I will take it that my case was held in low esteem, and that such a great and bare offer, with everything that I added on my part, so visible, so palpable and so lasting. I was made to endure all of that, having said ten times that I have walked into this Court without a single maravedí1 , but I will go ahead, because all the suffering for such a cause is of very little significance to me, for it is God who in His Divine Majesty will justify and command, and will aid my insufficient strength in the manner that he always has, so that I may reach the same glorious outcome that I wish for Your Majesty's memory. Lastly, I would like to say that whoever has given as much as he has, and has done as much as he could, and offers whatever it is, and whatever he has, as well as his life, would give millions if he had them. This is only the truth and I plead for justice
About this item:
Fifth 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. It could be this edition that was "leaked" and printed unofficially elsewhere in Spain, and subsequently translated and published in numerous editions overseas, abridged and anthologised. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, have submitted eight memorials (including this one) to Y.M., regarding the manner of populating the lands that Y.M. has commanded me to discover in the unknown Southern hemisphere, on which so far no decision was taken about my person, nor any response given, nor a hope regarding the certainty of my dispatch, having spent fourteen months at this Court and fourteen years fighting for this cause without pay, and without having been given any reward, I continue on my own, with infinite contradictions I have covered twenty thousand leagues by land and sea, and spent all my assets, upset my person, and suffered so many and such terrible things that I find them incredible myself, and all of this has been in order not to abandon this deed of such piety and mercy, in whose name and for all the love of God, I very humbly implore Y.M. not to desert me and all of my continuous travails and vigils, and with such a notable and well founded persistence I will not be able to reap the benefits that I very much wish and aspire to, being as much as they are to the honour and glory of God, the service of Y.M. and unnumbered benefits for as long as the world lasts and for eternity. The bigness of the newly discovered lands, according to what I saw, and to what Captain Luis Váez de Torres – the Admiral under my charge – informed Y.M. with good reason is such that its longitude is as much as that of the whole of Europe, Asia Minor, to the Caspian Sea and Persia with all the Mediterranean Islands and Ocean that fall within its contour, including England and Ireland, that hidden part is a fourth of the whole Planet, so large that in it there could be twice as many Kingdoms and provinces as Y.M. is currently the master of, all of it without bordering with Turks, Moors or any other nation that is used to worry and to disturb others. All the lands seen fall within the Torrid Zone, and part of them touches the Equinoctial, whose latitude can be ninety degrees, and in some cases a little less, and if they rise up as it appears to be, they can be on the Antipodes of Africa, the whole of Europe, and of most of Asia. I notify that the lands I saw at fifteen degrees are better than Spain – as shall be seen later – than others opposed in altitude, which must be in themselves a Paradise on earth. There are many people in those lands; their colours are white, dark brown, mulatto and indigenous, as well as a mix of one and the others. Some of them have black, long and loose hair; others have frizzy and curly hair; others are fair and thin and their differences are signs of big businesses and competition.
For that reason, because of the goodness of their lands, the lack of fire sources to kill each other, and also because they do not work in silver mines, and for many other reasons, it is to be believed that there is a fairly large number of people about whom we do not know any major or minor art, any walls, any armed forces, any Kings or law. They are no more than a number of simple gentiles divided into factions and not very friendly between them. Their weapons are ordinary bows and arrows, truncheons, staffs, spears and wooden darts. These people cover their private parts, are clean, happy, rational and very pleasant – as I have experienced in person. Considering all of this, it can be expected – with God’s Divine help – that they will be easy to pacify, to indoctrinate and to please – three conditions that are very necessary on principle, so that they can be directed towards all those holy purposes that have to be aspired to at the very least and at the very most, with the utmost of truths. Their houses are made of timber and covered with palm leaves. They use earthenware pots, have looms, fishing nets and other netting. They carve granite flute, drums and varnished wooden spoons. They have oratories and funerals, and their farms are reasonably set up and fenced. They make the most of mother‐of‐ pearl shells and use them to make chisels, gouges, saws, hooks and patens – both big and small – and wear them around their neck. Islanders have well crafted boats, in enough quantity to navigate from one island to the other, and all of this indicates that these peoples perform some policing, and it is not less to castrate boars and chickens. The bread they have consists of three different roots that exist in abundance, and need no more work than to roast and to cook them. They are tasty, healthy, provide good sustenance, and last long. They are a yard long and half a yard thick.
Fruits are abundant and there are six kinds of banana, a great number of almonds of four kinds, large obos, which is a fruit almost the size and the taste of peaches. There are many earth nuts, oranges and lemons that the Indians do not eat, and other extremely big fruit, and others that are not less good, which we saw and tasted, together with many tall sweet canes, and notice of apples. There are infinite palms that can be turned into pipes which can be used to make wine, vinegar, honey and solutions, and hearts of palms are very good. Coconuts are the fruit from these very same palms. When they are green, they are useful for combing and their flesh can be used as cream; when they are mature, they can be used as food and drink on land and at sea; when they become old, they are a source of lighting oil, as well as healing balm, and as food when they are new. Their husks make good drinking vessels and bottles. Their cocoons can be used as oakum to caulk the ships, to make ropes and riggings, ordinary and arquebus strings. The best leaves are used as sails for small boats, and as fine mattings, as well as for sleeping mats that are used as floors and to cover houses that are made of straight and high tree logs. They can also be used to make planks and spears, as well as other weapons and oars, and many more things for ordinary use. It must be noted that these palm groves are perennial, can be harvested all year round and do not need any tending, thus making it unnecessary to spend money or time. The vegetablesthat we saw are pumpkins, plenty of very big amaranths, pigweed, and we heard about the existence of broad beans. Meat can be obtained from domesticated pigs like ours, hens, capons, earth partridges, peacocks, turtledoves, wood pigeons and goats that were spotted by the other Captain. The Indians reported the existence of cows or buffalos. When it comes to fish, there are many red snappers, king fish, mullets, soles, red mullets, shads, dogfish, pompanos, sardines, rays, harvest‐fish, viejas, eels, hogfish, cowfish, red river fish, clams, shrimps, and other kinds whose name I cannot remember. There must be a lot more because these were captured near the ships.
If we consider all of the above, apart from so many excellent supplies, it is possible to enjoy many great gifts such as marzipans and preserves from different sources, all of them without bringing anything from other sources. To store aboard, apart from what was mentioned before, there will be no shortage of legs of pork, bacon and earthenware jugs full of lard, and the rest – which can be obtained from large pigs – without lacking agricultural produce or spices. It should be noted that many of these goods are similar to ours, and that there could be many more, and from this point of view the earth appears to be favourable to grow all the others that are produced in Europe. Wealth comes as silver and pearls that I have seen, and gold that the other Captain saw, as he says in his report, which are the three richest commodities from nature. There are several spice nuts, pepper and ginger that both of us have seen. We have heard there is cinnamon, and there could be clove because there are other spices and more, for those are parallel lands with only a small difference from Terrenate and Bachan. There is more to make silk, pita thread sugar and indigo with. There is good ebony and infinite other timbers to make as many ships as one wishes, with all their sails and riggings in three materials: one very similar to our hemp, and with coconut oil it is possible to make the galagala that would make it unnecessary to use pitch. We also spotted a certain resin that the Indians use to tar their canoes. Since there are goats and possibly cows, there may be cordovans, hides, candle fat and plenty of meat. Bees were also spotted, so there may be honey and wax.
Apart from these riches, the news is quite certain of others, and the location and disposition of the lands – which together with industrial production, considering there is so much gear apart from your things to create ours – the ones that I later want to take together with the better and more profitable products from Perú and New Spain, it seems that everything put together will make the land so rich that it will be able to sustain itself, and together with that of South America, it will make Spain greater and richer – exactly as I have demonstrated, if I am well and truly helped to make it happen. Because of what we have seen, given the fact that this is all on the shores, I say, My Lord, that from the inland we must expect so many greatnesses and riches and good things as those we have sampled. It is to be noted that my main attempt was only that of finding such a great land as the one I found, and that because of my diseases and other causes I do not talk about, I was not able to see as much as I would have wanted to, nor were we able to see in one month – considering that there are twelve in a year – to see the qualities and the fruits produced by all the lands that were created, and that the Indians living in them should not be judged from the point of view of our needs, tastes, greed and estimation of things, but as men who aspire to do as little work as possible in order to spend their lives without exhausting themselvesin the same way as we do. The comfort and good life is as much as can be seen in such cultivated, joyous and fresh land – black and rich and with enough potential, with heavy clay deposits that can later be used to make pottery, bricks and tiles, as well as any other product that can be made from it, and in all the very many nearby marble quarries that can be used to erect sumptuous and curious buildings, and in all those all‐purpose timbers, and in that location full of plains, valleys, hills, ravines, and redoubled highlands, and in those steady trickle rivers and springs where there could very easily be windmills, olive oil presses, sugar mills and irrigation work.
In the saltwater estuaries and reed beds that bear witnessto the fertility of the soil, whose canes can reach approximately five and six spans and thick in proportion, with a smooth‐faced thin and hard edge, and flints are as good as those in Madrid. The Bay of San Felipe (St. Phillip) and Santiago (St. James) has a twenty‐league long coastline which is all clear and free to sail in and out during the day and at nighttime. There are several settlements around it, and during the day one can see plenty of smoke, and during the night there are plenty of bonfires. Its port of Veracruz is so large that it offers enough space for a thousand anchored ships. Its bottom is clean black sand; no shipworm was found; it can possibly surge at any depth (from forty to half a fathom between two rivers, one of them as wide as the Guadalquivir in Seville, with an over two‐fathom sandbank) where large frigates and flat‐bottom boats can sail through, and from them we can obtain water, which is absolutely beautiful everywhere. The quay is a three‐league beach that mainly consists of a small extension covered in black pebbles, which would make excellent ballast. The beach sports no ruins or breaks and looks green: it is understood that the vegetation on the coast has not been beaten by the seas, and all the trees grow straight, without any damage or breakage, thus leading us to believe that there are probably no big storms. Apart from being such a spacious port, it boasts another advantage for recreation, for since daybreak in the nearby forest there is a great harmony of different birds – some of them seem to be nightingales, blackbirds, calandra larks, goldfinches and countless swallows; I have seen small parakeets and a large parrot, and leaving these aside there are many species of birds. The crickets and cicadas sing loudly, and every morning we would enjoy the soft perfumes coming from so many different flowers, such as orange blossom and basil. For all of this, as well as other beneficial effects, we concluded that the weather is benign and that nature keeps its order. This port and its bay owe their excellence to the proximity of so many good islands, in particular seven of them that cover two hundred leagues: one of them is very fertile and populated, has an extension of fifty leagues and is at a distance of twelve leagues.
To sum up, My Lord, I say that in this fifteen‐degree bay and port, a third higher than the Antarctic Pole, it will be possible to build a big and populated city, and its inhabitants will enjoy all the riches and benefits mentioned before, and those that my limited understanding cannot point out plus those that will be discovered and that time will tell, and which will be connected to the provinces of Chile, Perú, Panamá, Nicaragua, Guatemala, New Spain, Terrenat and the Philippines – all of them Y.M.’s possessions. If Y.M. were to become King of these others that I am offering and that I deem so important that more than becoming the key to those I have mentioned before, in all their curiosity and benefit, I leave the greatness of China and Japan, and more provincesfrom that coast of Asia with their islands, which would be an understatement on my part, I believe, and I can prove it in front of a gathering of mathematicians. I do not think I exaggerate by saying that these territories can house and sustain two hundred thousand Spaniards. Briefly, My Lord, that is the world where Spain is the centre, and it should be noted that its body is the nail. My Lord, the air is exactly as good as can be seen in what I stated above, and considering that all of us are foreigners there, nobody fell sick with so much work, sweat and drenching, never forgetting to drink water before breakfast and at odd times nor going without the fruits of the earth, under the Moon and the Sun, which was not very hot during the day. Woollens were tolerable, and considering that the natives are burly and strong, and some of them very old, and since they live in houses built directly on the soil, which suggests good health, for if the soil were sick, the natives would not build their houses on it as it is done in the Philippines and other locations I have been to. Consequently, fish and meat cured with salt would last more than two days, and the fruit that we brought from there – in the same way as these two I have here with me – is well preserved even after being picked from the trees.
We did not see sandy spots, or giant cacti, or thorny trees, or uprooted trees, or easily flooded mangroves, or marshes, or snow on the highlands, or crocodiles in the rivers, or venomous bugs in the mountains, or ants that damage houses, or chigoes, or ticks, or mosquitoes – a number of positive facts above all other positive facts to suit our wishes, which cannot be underestimated considering that there are areas in the Indies that have been rendered uninhabitable by such pests, and other where there is so much suffering for this reason, as far as I have witnessed. My Lord, these are the greatnesses and the benefits of the lands that I have discovered and of which I took possession in your name, under your Royal standard, as it is stated in the documents in my possession. In the first place, My Lord, a cross was erected and the Church of Our Lady of the Oreto was built; twenty masses were said; the Jubilee granted on Whitsunday was reached and there was a solemn procession on the day of Corpus Christi, in other words, the Holy Sacrament, marked by your Royal Standard to honour those unknown lands where I hoisted three 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. I have done all this and more as a loyal vassal to Y.M. and so that Y.M. can later add the title of Australia of the Holy Spirit with all its greatness, for the glory of God that took me there and showed it to me, and brought me to Y.M.’s presence, in which I stand with the same good will that I have always had for this cause that I created, and for your highness who deserves so much and I love infinitely.
I believe in Y.M.’s sensible counsel, greatness of spirit and Christian piety, the great care that you will certainly give to the population in those lands as much as it is convenient, being the main reason for not leaving them empty, and in that way making the name of Our Lord known, believed, adored and served instead of that of the Devil. Moreover, this will be the gateway for so many peoples in Y.M.’s care to receive all His goodness and remedy, as well as the extra care that should be given if enemies of the Roman Church were to saw their false doctrines and to convert all the good I represent in greater evils, and to call themselves lords of the Indies and ruin them all. I also believe that Y.M. must be aware that such pernicious damage or any other disaster – should it happen in the present or future – would cost millions in gold and thousands of men of dubious remedy. Go ahead, Y.M., because with only a small sum of money spent in Perú once, you will be able to win Heaven, eternal fame and that new world with all its promise. And since there is nobody who asks Y.M. for the gift of such a great gift from God, saved for your blessed time, I request them, and for them I request to be sent off; the galleons are ready, and there is plenty that I have to chase, to sort out and to do, and there is plenty in the Spiritual and Temporal that is lost every hour and that will never be recovered. If Christopher Columbus became stubborn through his suspicions, what I have seen and touched makes me so annoying, and I offer to tell Y.M. that of all the means available, I am aware of one that will aid the achievement of what I suggest, and I promise I will give entire satisfaction in everything. My Lord, this is a great deed, for the Devil wages deadly war, and it is not fair that he should be so powerful when Y.M. is its defender.
About this item:
Sixth 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. The Eighth Memorial 'escaped' the Spanish borders and was translated into various languages. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana. According to Kelly this sixth Presentation memorial is: "Memorial (printed later in 1609 at Barcelona) enumerating 23 island-discoveries (including La Austrialia del Espiritu Santo) and referring to the interrogatory made at Mexico with the testimonies of ten witnesses. It states that many other lands still remain to be discovered in the region of La Austrialia, and that Tomai, cacique of Taumaco, knew more than 60 islands in the neighbourhood, one of which called Manicolo was very extensive; also that Pedro (died 8 April 1607 in Mexico), a native seized at Taumaco, gave information about the islands of Chicayana, Guaytopo, Pilen, Nupan, Fonofono, Macaraylay, Manicolo, Tucopia and Pouro, and that he had seen pearls and silver ore in some of them (the other native, Pablo, a boy of 8 years, died on 24 May 1607). Finally it gives a description of the ceremonies at the Bay".
Copy of some remarkable notices submitted to the Honourable Court and to His Royal Majesty King Philip, as well as in a memorial presented in the current year 1609, by Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós. The aforementioned Captain notifies Your Majesty about the existence of many lands that he has discovered in the Indies, as well as of many others that are to be discovered. With Ordinary licence in Barcelona, at Gabriel Graells and Giraldo Dotil printing press, Year 1609.
My Lord I have reported to Your Majesty that one‐fourth of the globe lies hidden in the Southern Hemisphere, and that I have discovered twenty‐three islands whose names are La Encarnación, San Juan Bautista, Santelmo, las Cuatro Coronadas, S. Miguel, la Conversión de S. Paulo, la Dezena, la Sagitaria, la Fugitiva, la del Peregrino, Nuestra Señora del Socorro, Monterrey, Tucopia, San Marcos, el Vergel, las Lágrimas de S. Pedro, los Portales de Belén, el Pilar de Zaragoza, S. Raimundo, and Isla de la Virgen María. And jointly the three portions of land called Australia of the Holy Spirit, where the Bay of San Felipe, Santiago and the Port of Vera Cruz were discovered, was where we spent thirty‐six days with our ships. These three portions are believed to be one big land mass, and the greatness of their high and twisted mountain ridges and that River Iordan seem to guarantee that, as well as evidence of the rest as per my report made in Mexico with ten witnessesthat came with me and that I refer to. Your Majesty may request to see it at any time, as well as create a committee of mathematicians, pilots and religious authorities, since there are many of them at your Court now; the cause is worthy and Your Majesty greatly cares for it. Therefore I say, My Lord, that on the island called Taumaco – which appears to lie at a distance of one thousand, two hundred and fifty leaguesfrom Mexico – we were anchored for ten days. The Ruler of that island and other islands, whose name is Tumay – a reasonable man who has a fit body and size, a dark complexion, beautiful eyes, a sharp nose, grown curly hair and beard – in his grave manner helped us to obtain a water supply and timber that we were in dire need of at the time, together with his people. He came to my ship to see me, and once on board I examined him as follows. The first thing I showed him was his island, the sea, our ships and people, and I pointed in all directions towards the Horizon. I made other gestures, and with those I asked him whether he had seen other ships and men like ours, to which he replied he had not. I asked him whether he knew about other faraway or nearby lands, populated or not, and once he understood me, he mentioned more than sixty islands, as well as a large extension of land called Manicolo.
I, My Lord, made a note of all of them looking at the compass to learn where each one of them is – which one is towards the South, Southeast, West and Northeast of your island. In order to help me understand which were the small ones, he drew small circles and pointed to the sea with his finger, leading me to understand that the land was close. For the larger ones, he drew larger circles with the same gestures, and to refer to that great land he opened both arms without closing them again, in an attempt to show its extension. In order to explain which were farthest or closest, he would point to the sun from east to west, he would lean his head on one of his hands, close his eyes, and using his fingers he would count the nights. Based on their resemblance, he said which peoples were white, black, Indians and mulattos, as well as which ones were mixed, and who were his friends and enemies. He explained that on some islands the natives ate human flesh by pretending he was biting his arm, making it clear that he did not love these people well; in this way and in others he made himself understood, and I repeated (my questions) so many times that he seemed tired of them. He expressed his wish to return to his home (…) and said goodbye to me with a kiss on my cheek and with other manifestations of love. On this island, the quay is a three‐league beach, most of it consisting of small black heavy stones – excellent to be used as ballast for the ships. Apart from being very open, this port has another advantage: since daybreak, there are thousands of different birds, some of them apparently nightingales, blackbirds, calandra larks and infinite swallows, small parrots, and many more kinds of bird, until the cicadas and crickets start chirping. Each morning we would enjoy the soft perfumes emanating from so many different kinds of flower such as orange blossom and basil – because of this, the sky was deemed without inclemency and nature was deemed to be in order.
When I left the island of Taumaco, I took four very fine Indians. Two escaped swimming and the other two stayed on board. On the way back, in the port of Acapulco and in Mexico City – where he passed away after the Marquis of Montesclaros saw him – he made the following report without changes, even though he was asked on different occasions by several people and in different ways, and his words were denied and contradicted. The first thing that Pedro said was that he was a native from an island called Chicayna which is larger than Taumaco – where we found him – and that both of them are four days away from each other. Chicayna is flat, and we understood there is abundant water, and that its people are of a good Indian complexion, long loose hair, and that they slightly paint their faces, shoulders and chests – as he did. He told us there are white men with long fair hair as well, and that he was a weaver and an archer. In his own language, his name was Luca, his wife was called Layna, and his son’s name was Ley. He also mentioned that in his island there are many oysters, such as the ones whose shell I saw, and I brought some that I have here with me, of three different sizes. The first one is common in Margarita, the second one is twice as large, and the third one was approximately a few inches wide. They call all these oysters Totofe, and pearls can be found in them, which they call Futiquilquil. For this reason I showed him the shells, he took them in his hands, and holding them he showed us where they grow. When asked how many there were and of what size, he said that in some of them there are more and in others there are less. In order to explain the size, he would say that some of them are like sand and salt, like pebbles and rosary beads, like the button that he had on his jerkin. There were some larger ones as well, which can be caught from the stony seabed, and he himself would pick them by hand and put them in his canoe.
They only want them for their meat, called Canofe, and the shells can be used to make hooks, spoons and other things, but pearls are not used for any purpose. Pedro mentioned other details about what can be found in his island, such as much larger pearls than those already mentioned, silvery stones, and infinite other things that I brought to this Court for whoever cares to see. Pedro said that they call the Devil Tetua, and that he speaks to the Indians without being seen and sometimes would touch their faces and chests during the night. When they attempted to find out what it was, they found nothing. He mentioned that with some shyness and fear, leaving no doubt that he was talking about something evil and abhorrent to them. He told others – but not to me – that before we went to his land, the Devil had warned them that we were going to kill them. He appeared very eager to go back to his land, in order to inform the Lord of Taumaco of all the good we had done to him, and that his Indian companions had abandoned our ships freely, that we had not done them any wrong, what a good thing it is to be a Christian and that once he became one, the Devil did not speak to him, nor did he hear him or felt his touch. He wanted to bring his son and wife to live with us. Pedro seemed to be twenty‐five years of age, and when he spoke to us, he did not know much about the Castilian language, and that was why his statement was hard work, because he was denied and repeated several times. It seems that if he had lived, he would have given more reasons than he had, and what he did not say was not because he was cunning. Consequently, I as well as those who spoke to him regarded him as a truthful man with a sense of shame.
One day he entered the Church of S. Francisco in Mexico, and as he saw so many crucifixes in it he asked why there were so many gods when he was told there was only one God. The question was answered by showing him all the portraits of the real Christ, and with this as well as with the rest of what was answered, he appeared satisfied. The friars who were listening to him felt happy, for his question was that of a man who can think. Finally, on Palm Sunday he passed away. I trust God’s mercy, which in such a strange manner brought him to baptism and to passing away after confession and anointment, on such an outstanding day after having proved himself as a good Christian (…) The other Indian was called Paulo. He was a boy of no more than eight years of age, dark brown complexion and frizzy hair. He had beautiful eyes and was of a good build and better disposition, to such an extent that all of those who treated him loved him very much for being so docile and pleasant. Like Pedro, he had learned the four prayers and crossed himself with great joy. Like the good Christian he was, God took him on Ascension Day. He spoke about the Devil called Hadanua, and said that he spoke to the Indians without being seen. He talked about smaller and larger dogs and about a catlike animal, and mentioned a great river close to his people. He said that in his land there are many warlike people who fight each other, and that human flesh is not eaten, a fact that can be explained by the amount of pork, poultry and other food that they have, for among these peoples it appears that eating human flesh is a consequence of their barren lands or the brutality of their inhabitants.
Being only a child who was sick, it was not possible to learn as much as we would have liked. I have gathered a small vocabulary from Pedro and Paulo’s tongues, and what I have learned is easy to pronounce. These (and some others), My Lord, are the greatnesses and goodnesses of the lands I discovered, of which I took possession in Your Majesty’s name under our Royal Standard, as it is recorded in the edicts in my possession. My Lord, once there, we erected a Cross and we built the Church of Our Lady of Loreto, we celebrated twenty masses, we won the jubilee conceded on Whitsunday and we made a solemn procession on Corpus Christi day, that is, the Holy Sacrament guided by Your Majesty’s Standard. Those mysteriouslands were honoured and I hoisted three field flags. On the higher ones I showed the two columns side by side your Royal Weapons, and with this I can say that this is the end of Plus Ultra and in whatever is a continent in front and behind. All of this and the rest is because I am Your loyal vassal and so that Your Majesty can later add to your title “Australia of the Holy Spirit”, for the glory of the same Lord who led me there and showed it to me, and then brought me to Your Majesty’s presence, where I am with the same will I devoted to the cause, and for your highness whom I love infinitely. If Christopher Columbus’s suspicions made him stubborn, what I saw, touched and offered make me so annoying. All my means are at Your Majesty’s disposal so that you may continue with what I have proposed, to your entire satisfaction. Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, Your Majesty’s vassal.
About this item:
Seventh in the series of fourteen known Queirós' 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 seventh Presentation memorial Quirós specifically compares his discoveries and their potential with those of Columbus.
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, in order to do my duty by my conscience and to serve Y.M., respectfully ask Y.M. if he would be so kind as to read and consider this memorial as a whole, on the commencement of such a pious and important cause such as the one I am dealing with here. It is an accepted fact that when the West Indies were discovered, there were 30 million natives in them. Therefore, I say that if such topic is of interest, and the inadvertence which such an amazing mission was started with led to finding the right strategy to attract and teach those people how to enjoy the good of both genders, and by way of convenience each one of them donates one ducat as fief, having contributed and still contributing today between four and eleven – without counting on what is taken by different methods – and many take advantage of the personal service, Y.M. could have an income of 30 million. Spending 10 [million] on accommodating the settlers and ministers, and to their spiritual and temporal benefit as it is understood, they used to give Y.M. 20 million every year which were lost long ago and will be lost in the future without remedy. The above mentioned figure should not be considered excessive, for I saw the writing myself in a Franciscan convent located in Suchimilco1 , five leagues away from Mexico City, which said that only the friars from their order baptised 16 million in that region, and these – together with those who were baptised by all the other priests, plus those who were not baptised – added to the 14 million that were said to be on the islands, Hispaniola, Cuba, Xamayca [Jamaica], Puertorrico [Puerto Rico] and others, in addition to those in Perú.
It is said that when Pizarro met up with the Inca King, he [the King] had brought so many people with him that they covered the fields of Caxamalca [Cajamarca], and that since they were so many, he made the men cart earth for his gardens and orchards for many leagues, as well as large stones for palaces and fortresses. He also had them build over 300 league‐long roads, walls and footpaths, and he kept them busy in other enormous and unnecessary construction work, only to keep them entertained, and that only in the civil war of Pizarro and Almagro, 7 million succumbed, added to the Indians from Chile, Césares, Paraguay, Tucumán, all the tributaries of the River Plate, Santacruz [Santa Cruz] de la Sierra, Moxos, Chunchos, Chiriguanais, Andes, Chachapoyas, Quito, Popayán, New Kingdom of Granada, Venezuela, plains and ridges between the Orinoco and the Marañón rivers, the whole of Brazil, Tierrafirme [Province of Tierra Firme], Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras, Campeche, Florida, and the three new provinces of Galicia, Vizcaya and México, as well as many others; adding the hidden Indians, there could be 60 and many more millions of them, because between those that were baptised by the Franciscans and the ones living in the above mentioned islands, they come to 30 million – a figure that should be considered true, for it is said that China has 60 million live inhabitants, even though it is a considerably smaller province.
The discovery of these Indies took place 117 years ago, and according to natural order (leaving care aside) there should be more than 100 million of those Indians nowadays since the land is 1 TN: present day Xochimilco (Mexico). large enough for them to spread out and it can sustain them all. Considering this, Y.M. could well receive one ducat a year from each inhabitant – one hundred million ducats without including the one‐fifth payments from the mines where they work, as well as the contractual and transportation rights, and the alms from the Crusade papal bull at four, six, eight and more reales and pesos. I am not counting the substantial tithes coming from plantations, sown lands, stockbreeding and other visible and tangible profits; if a good method is looked for, it will be found. These millions should not seem too much, for it is said that the King of China has an annual income of 150 million in gold – others say it is 170 million – of which he spends 100 and accumulates the rest, and it is not known whether his land has more than 1,000 leagues of silver mines as the Indies, without the gold, pearls, emeralds and all the other riches that it has, added to those that may come from industry, considering that there is so much of the necessary gear for what is mentioned before. America is a territory with a coastline of 8,000 or 9,000 leagues, with no neighbours of the kind that upset other nations or disturb good attempts. Given this, and if the natives were indoctrinated as best as possible, making them good Christians, they would be so disciplined and knowledgeable in all arts and sciences, that they would be able to defend themselves against any aggressor and persecution attempt against them,something that they did not know, nor were able to or would be able to do for lack of eyes, hands and committed heart, with the proviso that however the latter were guided, it would involve them and the common good on Y.M.’s account. I have said much and could say much more, since the lack of teaching, armoury and forms of preservation has been the cause that brought so many millions to an end as both they and we attested, as well as the deserts in their immense territories where nowadays there are only ruined towns to be seen; their houses are used by nesting birds, full of spider webs and covered in weeds.
I will not say more because it is a pity, and on what I said before, by using simple logic we can conclude that the offence against God, against Y.M. and against those people cannot be compared with anything else. Those kingdoms could well be at their peak of abundance, as I have explained, and their natives could be much more political than I have described them. More clothing and goods than are produced in Europe would be necessary for their management and expense, thus involving a continuously increasing number of fleets and royal rights – leaving aside those that were stated before – better couriers and such a great power by land and sea that no nation, however fierce and courageous, would dare attack a Spanish ship, having secured several million in gold for several years by land and sea. Nor would there be anybody who would dare to attempt or to offend any Spanish property. It could well be that if Y.M. were to see such greatness, such goods and riches, both spiritual and temporal, that not only Y.M. would treasure the Indies, but also for reasons of state he would like to repair and secure his extended provinces. Y.M.’s great distance and long absence has been the cause for losing such infinite assets and the ruin of future ones. King Croesus’s riches have been regarded as wonders, and to the world’s surprise the 1,250,000 men under Xerxes in his army, that by comparison to what these chapters say, it can be compared to what a shadow is to the body that projects it.
Not only could those people have been good for themselves as stated, but also with a few leftovers from such great power and riches, and with the great gear they have on both seas they could build and arm a large number of ships to avenge Spain, its provinces, kingdoms and crown on so many enemies; it is under siege and under threat waiting for the occasion to deal a blow, and that would not be necessary because with all its many millions in gold, in excess of what the Indies could yield, it would not only be enough to take up arms against all its enemies – however powerful they may be – but also to capture what the Turks and the Moors have and to liberate the Holy Land, bearing in mind that everything that men can do is achieved with money. Those peoples could defend God’s Church and make it possible that with your great glory you could defeat those who persecute it furiously, and not only that but also to make it grow in such a way that in the whole of the known and unknown Earth, God Our Lord will be known, believed in, adored and served by all His creatures, and all of this would be better done under our guidance and leadership and with our help, or to be more precise by God, who is so powerful that he can do much more than I say through those peoples, in the same way as He has done and does and is expected to do through the very few Spaniards who will be followed by such great glory, having been their masters, in the same way as St. James and his disciples, for they have been the Spaniards’. In the past, Spain was the Indies of the Phoenicians and the Romans, and the injury and use of force that that its natives endured happened because they were not as wise or practical as they are now.
This point and the following ones should be especially noted. The Chichimeco Indians from New Spain were so spirited and courageous that our troops could never conquer them, even using good weaponry and horses, and so they were appeased. The Guajiro Indians from the Orinoco savannah around the River of the Axe defended themselves so courageously from our troops that it was inevitable to grant them peace with the freedom they requested. In order to liberate themselvesfrom mistreatment, the Araucanos2 or Chilean Indians defend themselves with so much effort and damage to us as has been experienced. The same may be said about the Pixaos, Cumana, Gotos and Nirgua Indians, who cannot be pacified, even though they lack fire and iron weapons, as well as military discipline and other things that are convenient nowadays for defensive and offensive action. What I mean is that all of them are men who could benefit from good discipline, since they know how to be soldiers and sailors in their own way, as 2 T.N.: I have respected the name used in the original. However, the word “Araucano” is considered pejorative and nowadays they are known by their real name of “Mapuche”. well as sculptors, painters, silversmiths, lawyers, musicians, lower ministers and all the other professions that were shown to them. I finally say, My Lord, that even if those peoples were only the thirty million referred to, it would be possible to do what was said very well, and the advantage of the benefits mentioned when there are only less than 2 million domesticated Indians alive today, and their number does not come anywhere near the 30 million that were there at the time of their discovery, who would have spent as politicians, and even if that were not the case that would be as great as it sounds. It seems that the number of Indians that America and its islands used to have at the time of discovery is well represented, and the great growth and good condition that they could have had and did not have, and the bad one they have today, which has barely been remedied, and this damage – present, past and future, in their souls and bodies, as well as the monetary loss – is countless, and to emphasise this topic I say that if those territories were discovered nowadays and they received the proper love and care, there would have been more fruit for heaven and earth than in the past 118 years, and they would last with increasing advantage for as long as the world exists, and this would serve as punishment.
My Lord, what has been said could be worth so much, even if it is a half, a third or a quarter, and it is so patently clear to me that the loss of so much good and the acquisition of so many ills, as well as the living care in which I live; the fear I feel and I am aware of that the greatness, goodness and value of my cause will not come to such an end, that for this reason I would like to remind you that well‐founded causes last very long and they are not easy to thwart, and that the badly founded ones are very difficult to reform and always run the risk of ending badly. It concerns me that if foundations do not occur in an organised manner, the current foundation will meet the same fate of all the others, where the population had no hope of anything good and that immense harm was done to a large number of people, and that what in America has been lost must and can be recovered (by means of love and no force) in Australia of the Holy Spirit, where I very humbly beg you to defend those great and good lands and to guide the people in them, in such a way that nobody loses their way and that we all do the right thing for their honour and glory, as well Y.M.’s, and this is the target I am aiming at and firing, whether it is believed or not. On careful consideration, it will be discovered that God kept the best lands to be discovered last – great, fertile, healthy, with many comforts for human life and populated by many and very good peoples, where gold, silver, pearls, spices and other riches were found, and I consider that if it is not these lands, I cannot see any other that can redeem Spain and last, considering the good methods expected from their government. I warn you, My Lord, that the more the smallest thing among several is worth, it is said in this and other documents, with all the advantages that make it compelling to preserve all the other territoriesthat Y.M. rules upon, helped a man of good will who can notice what can be heard and wants to do more with God’s help, all of it for free, and who deserves the prize of his services and does not ask for more than to do such a service to God and to give those souls what they lack, with 500,000 ducats that will be spent only once in Perú, where there is a surplus of many millions and men, the two species I request which can be used for that population whose return can later happen in such a way that Spain breathes and receives encouragement.
Y.M. can earn so many thousand spiritual and temporal goods and gifts, with as little as 500,000 ducats from Perú. Sixty‐two hundred thousand to be precise, for it is estimated that a ducat is worth the same as a real, and whenever there is a shortage of cash there, it must be sent from here, as Your Majesty said about Our Lord, who is in heaven, that whenever there was a cash shortage in México to continue with the Philippine conversion, you would send the money from Spain, and it must be said that there has always been enough. Y.M. should realise the seriousness of my work, for the jewellery must be sold and with what is left it is possible to do such a great service to God and to Y.M. with the conversion of infinite numbers of people and goods. My Lord, My Lord, if it comes to greatness, what could be greater than populate a new world? If it comes to riches, what is better that the promised ones to remove the scum both on land and sea? If it comes to fame and glory, what is more eternal? If it comes to public benefit, what is more universal or beneficial? If it comes to give jobs to the surplus population of Perú, what better preparation? If it comes to an occasion, none is more proper or better, for I went, saw, returned and I know where the lands I discovered are, and ask Y.M., who is such a powerful king and lord, to populate them? If it comes to the love of God, we must risk as much as He has given and will give us, what better or more magnificent service than to bring a considerable number of creatures to the knowledge of their Creator, with the just means mentioned and with those that will be looked for, all the more just when doing the work? I remind Y.M. of how many navies and fleets have gone to the Indies and come back after I have been to this Court, and how much I have lost with this delay, and how much more can be lost if the delay is longer; the Tierra Firme fleet has departed, and how much do I have to prepare, walk and do, and no time is brief for whoever suffers and knows that if the mission that I love so much and that has cost me so much, and will cost so much more, is lost, even more so knowing the danger it runs by visible and invisible enemies. For all of this, I beg Y.M. to give me dispatch, as required by the greatness of this cause, with the haste called by all its needs and my wishes, because it is time for me to receive it, even if only considering Y.M.’s interests.
About this item:
Eighth 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. The Eighth Memorial 'escaped' the Spanish borders and was translated into various languages. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana. According to Kelly this eight Presentation memorial is: "...Memorial ... pointing out that the cédula for the Viceroy of Peru given him by Gabriel de Hoa on 18 Dec. 1608 is cast only in general terms and lacks the clarity and force necessary to ensure the carrying out of the preparations in Peru. ... For the success of the enterprise he requests a number of cédulas to reinforce his dispatch. He refers to his extreme poverty since he has spent everything in the furtherance of this cause and asks a grant-in-aid to meet his debts."--Kelly.
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, showing the world how Y.M. wishes and tries to honour and glorify God, Our Lord, in the population attempt that Y.M. commands me to do in the Southern territoriesthat I discovered on Y.M.’s orders, to preach the Gospel and to convert all their native gentiles. I consider it a reward for my hard work. Sir, I infinitely thank God, for I can see such a great and pious cause is as free from dangers as I have seen it develop so far, and I thank Y.M. for such a high favour that I accept with as much humility as possible, and going back in time a long way to pursue such an objective, I will do as much as I possibly can to fulfill my duty to God and to Y.M. in response to the trust that was put in me. First, I start with the following. I received Y.M.’s royal letters patent from secretary Gabriel de Hoa on December 18, and in it Y.M. commandsthe Viceroy of Perú to dispatch me. Based on its wording, I alert you on the confusion and danger, and I say that if Y.M. commands the Viceroy to reach an agreement with me on the 500,000 ducat expense, being the Viceroy who releases those funds to be distributed according to my instructions, but without laying my hands on a single peso, I will perform the rough estimates and distributions, look for the commodities, set the prices, send parties where such commodities can be purchased – good quality at a reasonable price – and I will save on freight with the ships under my authority.
In short, I will look for the right men – within and without Lima – and whatever else involved in good management, always sticking to the above mentioned 500,000 ducats and saving a large sum in commodities. With all this, apart from the granted one thousand men, I will take the married men’s wives, whom have not been mentioned and are of high importance to increase population numbers together with their children and servants, as well as all the adventurers. Since I will be properly dispatched in the manner indicated, a million will be a small number and my dispatch will be short. Be aware, Y.M., that I am giving you a range of options and that everything I have requested is to the greater benefit of this mission that I cannot guide or assure from here or there solely on my part, but if the royal letters patent that Y.M. issues – as well as the dispatch in Perú – are at my entire satisfaction, and if Y.M. grants me title that I cannot do without to appoint the necessary officers, the faculty to manage affairs from here and to firmly state any aspect of relevance to all parts – to their convenience as well as Y.M.’s, and all the members of the expedition’s. Considering, Sir, that I do not speak to my advantage – nor do I note it or want to – in exchange for ensuring that this mission is guided as magnificently as it deserves, at least I expect that what I cannot avoid is not denied to me, for it was denied neither to Columbus nor to any of the others who undertook such missions. On the contrary, they received much more than what I request, which is not for me but to serve Y.M. and I do not deserve any less. If I must, I will give examples, not only from the past but also from the present. It is known that officers appointed by a third party receive favours from those in power and go ahead. In those remote places, even around here, there is a risk that it may happen, and it is convenient to prevent those issues from here. The above mentioned 500,000 ducats will be spent in large amounts.
In that way, 150,000 ducats will be used for the sailors’ wages and to aid some distinguished people. One hundred and fifty‐ thousand ducats will be used for ships, riggings and careening; from that sum, 100,000 will be destined for two‐year supplies, arms, munition, sea rooms, tar, oakum, ropes, and other unavoidable gear. Fifty‐thousand ducats will be used for ornaments and all the necessary vestmentsfor divine worship as well as for religious ministers’ 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 waresto build two large ships and to load them with whatever the earth can give; send one of them to Mexico and the other to Lima on Y.M.’s behalf to build other necessary ships for discoveries and transport, and to prepare the ships that I will sail in and the dispatch notes that I will send. If it is convenient, for the discovery of the Anian strait – since it can be done with ease from there; 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 of 600 lbs of iron, the necessary muskets and arquebuses on credit in Seville, Sanlúcar and Cádiz, all the above mentioned goods as well as some others that I will indicate in convenient quantities, that 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 depend on the surpluses. Apart from this, there will be savings in rights and freight, for Y.M.’s galleons can use the 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 all matters of spiritual and temporal government.
Some will be knowledgeable in business matters and division of labour, and some others will be knowledgeable 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 matters referred 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 all the names of their wives, children and servants. I beg 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 consists of this decision, as well as the greaterservice 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. commands the 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 notable 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 do it here. I beg Y.M. to efficiently eliminate such an issue, since doing so does not offer a major inconvenience, for 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 permission, without title or faculty, to make arrangements and order whatever I will 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 lands.
The fruits of such great and good plants 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 one thousand men – many of them married and with supplies, weapons, ships and everything that I have requested and that could be necessary – mentioning 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 big 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 that addresses 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 is as detailed and tight as it is and it will not be less so now, and I will report the causes if Y.M. so commands it. 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, for this mission came close to failure several times because of the poverty I found myself in several times (you can confirm this with Alonso de Sotomayor, who knows how I fared in Panamá) due to extreme poverty, to the scarcity I experienced, to others’ terrible and long‐lasting contradictions, it is alive in Y.M.’s memory on whose account it happened, 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 included, 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 to 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 and 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 to administrate the sacraments, or from His Holiness 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 Y.M.’s State Council from the Philippines, 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 this mission, as well as the examples and notifications from live witnessesthat I submit. 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 nor have, and to truly defend and sustain them in peace and justice, since it is for this end 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 to increase twofold all lands, peoples, riches, and comfortsfrom 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, it is strength to be estimated in what it deserves, and that it is worthy of such means that assure the good ends 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. And since Y.M. entrusts a man with the most, entrust him with the least, for the reasons I give. May Y.M. not allow that this cause become the end of me before I start it. The fleet will soon depart.
About this item:
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.
About this item:
Tenth 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. Circulation of all memorials was restricted to the King, ministers and Councils of State, of War and the Indies. When it was learnt in 1610 he was distributing them beyond the court the King ordered all memorials to be recalled. The Eighth Memorial 'escaped' the Spanish borders and was translated into various languages. These so-called "presentation memorials" - to be distinguished from later derivative printings which appeared throughout Europe - are among the most valuable of all printed Australiana. This tenth Presentation memorial is the most substantial of the memorials, summarising earlier petitions, including an important letter by Luis Vaez de Torres written from Manila 15 June 1607. Kelly described it as the 'Composite Memorial', since it incorporates the "Eighth" Memorial (No 5 in the Presentation memorials series), commencing with "La grandeza ..." , 'Relación sumaria' from information given to him at the Court by the Lic. Hernando de los Ríos, Procurador of the Philippines, ' Relación sumaria' extracted from a report by Ruy Gonzalez de Sequeira, Capitan mayor of the Moluccas, and the Sixteenth Memorial along with substantial excerpts from others of the fifty Memorials already presented during Quirós' three years at Court̀.
My Lord Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós. Y.M. instructs and commandsthe Council of the Indies to give me dispatches to my entire satisfaction, so that the Viceroy of Perú can give me whatever I need to populate the Southern Territories where Y.M. has sent me. I always considered it true that the claims about the peoples I discovered and are yet to be discovered, my good faith and just petitions, would reach pious ears and motivate Y.M.’s Christian disposition to the greatness of these two liberal favours I humbly accept, and I thank Y.M. infinitely. I promise to devote my life to serve such a great mission with the same love and truth as I have done so far. Sir, the greatest good or evil for those territories and peoples stem from a good or bad beginning. For this reason I must resubmit two memorials – number eight and number sixteen from the fifty that [I submitted] in a period of three yearssince I expressed my aspirations to this court – the same ones I gave Y.M. so that they will stand as full proof of my good will, and of what I could have done and what is owed me for not having helped me [before]. In case I am gone, they will serve as a wake‐up call and a guide to those who continue this great mission.
The first one is about the greatness and riches of those lands with all the connections given to Y.M. Based on this I have shown the world in three colours to Y.M.: all the known territories appear in gold and the known seas in blue; the unknown area is shown in black as well as what has been discovered so far. Sir, there is only one world and after I tried to discover what is left, I have painted more than 200 [islands] in many forms and sizes. In the second [memorial] I mention the perils those territories are in, as well as their inhabitants and the Indies. I also mention how convenient it is for Y.M. to spend his funds only once, as well as how many goods of both genders such an investment will bring and secure at all times. I explain what must be done on arrival. I show the city map and explain how to avoid civil lawsuits and how to manage criminal ones. I explain how to teach, defend, finance and sustain the natives in peace and justice, how to manage government for them and for us including very important and fruitful advice I have written on 600 pages and more, and that as the current work was asked of me, I will stick to two basic topics. The first one: if Y.M. would be so kind as to give me instructions on what I should and can do to serve God and Y.M. to secure my conscience. The second: a dispatch, plus ecclesiastic and secular persons for Y.M. to lead and secure whatever he wishes in that part of the world, both spiritually and temporally, in whose name and as payment for my services, I humbly ask Y.M. to read and consider these writings and to address whatever he can. The enormous size of the newly discovered territories, according to what I saw and to what Captain Luis Váez de Torres – the Admiral under my charge – informed Y.M. is such that with good reason its longitude is as much as that of the whole of Europe including Asia Minor to the Caspian Sea, and Persia with all the Mediterranean Islands and Ocean that fall within its borders, including England and Ireland.
That hidden part is a fourth of the whole Planet. [It is] so large that it could accommodate twice as many Kingdoms and provinces as Y.M. is currently the master of, all of them without bordering with Turks, Moors or any other nation used to worrying and disturbing others. All the spotted lands fall within the Torrid Zone, and part of them touches the Equinoctial [Zone]. They may be at a latitude of ninety degrees, in some cases less, and if they rise up as it appears to be, they can be on the Antipodes of Africa, the whole of Europe, and of most of Asia and Florida. I hereby notify that the lands I saw at fifteen degrees are better than Spain – as it will be shown later – [and] than others that differ in altitude, which must be in themselves a Paradise on earth. There are many peoples in those lands; their colours are white, dark brown, mulatto and indigenous, as well as a mix of one and the others. Some of them have black, long and loose hair; others have frizzy and curly hair; others are fair and thin and their differences are signs of big businesses and competition. For that reason, because of the goodness of their lands, the lack of fire sources to kill each other, and also because they do not work in silver mines, and for many other reasons, it is to be believed that there is a fairly large number of people about whom we do not know any major or minor art, any city walls, any armed forces, any Kings or law. They are no more than a number of simple gentiles divided into factions and not very friendly between them. Their weapons are ordinary bows and arrows, truncheons, staffs, spears and wooden darts. These people cover their private parts, are clean, happy, rational and very pleasant – as I have experienced in person. Considering all of this, it can be expected – with God’s Divine help – that they will be easy to pacify, to indoctrinate and to please – three conditions that are very necessary on principle, so that they can be directed towards all those holy purposes that have to be aspired to at the very least and at the very most, with the utmost of truths. Their houses are made of timber with double slope roofs covered with palm leaves. They use earthenware pots; have looms, fishing nets and other netting.
They carve granite flutes, drums and varnished wooden spoons. They have oratories and funerals, and their farms are reasonably set up and fenced. They make the most of mother‐of‐pearl shells and use them to make chisels, gouges, saws, hooks and patens – both big and small – and wear them around their neck. They are not aware of their riches and hold our rescue objects in high esteem: knives, bells, mirrors and similar stuff. They have well crafted boats, in enough quantity to navigate from one island to the other, and all of this indicates that these peoples perform some policing. The bread they have consists of three different roots that they sow and exist in abundance, and needs no more work than roasting and cooking. They are tasty, healthy, provide good sustenance and last long. They are a yard long and half a yard thick. Fruits are abundant and there are six kinds of banana, a great number of almonds of four kinds and others that are almost the size and the taste of peaches. There are many earth nuts, oranges and lemons that the Indians do not eat, and other extremely big fruit, and others that are no less good, which we saw and tasted, together with many tall sweet canes, and notice of apples. There are infinite palms that can be turned into pipes which can be used to make wine, vinegar, honey and solutions, and hearts of palms are very good. Coconuts are the fruit from these very same palms.
When they are green, they are useful for combing and their flesh can be used as cream; when they are mature, they can be used as food and drink on land and at sea; when they become old, they are a source of lighting oil, as well as healing balm, and as food when they are new. Their husks make good drinking vessels and bottles. Their cocoons can be used as oakum to caulk the ships and to make ropes and riggings, ordinary and arquebus strings. The best leaves are used as sails for small boats, and as fine mattings, as well as for sleeping matsthat are used as floors and to cover houses that are made of straight and high tree logs. They can also be used to make planks and spears, as well as other weapons and oars, and many more things for ordinary use. It must be noted that these palm groves are perennial, can be harvested all year round and do not need any tending. Meat can be obtained from domesticated pigs like ours; there are hens, capons, earth partridges, peacocks, turtledoves, wood pigeons and goats that were spotted by the other Captain. The Indians reported the existence of cows or buffalos. When it comes to fish, there are many red snappers, king fish, mullets, soles, red mullets, shads, dogfish, pompanos, sardines, rays, harvest‐fish, viejas, eels, hogfish, cowfish, red river fish, clams, shrimps, and other kinds whose name I cannot remember. There must be a lot more because these were captured near the ships.
If we consider all of the above, apart from so many excellent supplies, it is possible to enjoy many great gifts such as marzipans and preservesfrom different sources, all of them without bringing anything from others. To store aboard, apart from what was mentioned before, there will be no shortage of legs of pork, bacon and earthenware jugs full of lard, and the rest – which can be obtained from large pigs – without lacking agricultural produce or spices. It should be noted that many of these goods are similar to ours, and that there could be many more, and from this point of view the earth appears to be favourable to grow all the others that are produced in Europe. Wealth comes as silver and pearls that I have seen, and gold that the other Captain saw, as he says in his report to Y.M., which are the three richest commodities from nature. There are several spice nuts, pepper and ginger that both of us have seen. We have heard there is cinnamon, and there could be clove because there are other spices and more, for those are parallel lands with only a small difference between Tidore and Terrenate. There is more to make silk, pita thread sugar and indigo with.
There is good ebony and infinite other timbersto make as many ships as one wishes, with all their sails and riggings in three materials: one very similar to our hemp, and with coconut oil it is possible to make the galagala that would make it unnecessary to use pitch. We also spotted a certain resin that the Indians use to tar their canoes. Since there are goats and possibly cows, there may be cordovans, hides, candle fat and plenty of meat. Bees were also spotted, so there may be honey and wax. Apart from these riches, the news is quite certain of others, and the location and disposition of the lands – which together with industrial production, considering there is so much gear apart from their things to create ours – the ones that I later want to take together with the better and more profitable products from Perú and New Spain, it seems that everything put together will make the land so rich that it will be able to sustain itself, and together with that of South America, it will make Spain greater and richer – exactly as I have demonstrated, if I am well and truly helped to make it happen. Because of what we have seen, given the fact that this is all on the shores, I say, My Lord, that from the inland we must expect so many greatnesses and riches and good things as those we have sampled. It is to be noted that my main attempt was only that of finding such a great land as the one I found, and that because of my diseases and other causes I do not talk about, I was not able to see as much as I would have wanted to, nor were we able to see in one month – considering that there are twelve in a year – the qualities and the fruits produced by all the lands that were created, and that the Indians living in them should not be judged from the point of view of our needs, tastes, greed and estimation of things, but as men who aspire to do as little work as possible in order to spend their lives without exhausting themselves in the same way as we do.
The comfort and good life is as much as can be seen in such cultivated, joyous and fresh land – black and rich and with enough potential, with heavy clay deposits that can later be used to make pottery, bricks and tiles, as well as any other product that can be made from it, and in all the very many nearby marble quarries that can be used to erect sumptuous and curious buildings, and in all those all‐purpose timbers, and in that location full of plains, valleys, hills, ravines, and redoubled highlands, and in those steady trickle rivers and springs where there could very easily be windmills, olive oil presses, sugar mills and irrigation work. In the saltwater estuaries and reed beds that bear witnessto the fertility of the soil, whose canes can reach approximately five and six spans and thick in proportion, with a smooth‐faced thin and hard edge, and flints are as good as those in Madrid. The Bay of San Felipe (St. Phillip) and Santiago (St. James) has a twenty‐league long coastline which is all clear and free to sail in and out during the day and at nighttime. There are several settlements around it, and during the day one can see plenty of smoke, and during the night there are plenty of bonfires. Its port of Veracruz is so large that it offers enough space for a thousand anchored ships. Its bottom is clean black sand; no shipworm was found; it can possibly surge at any depth (from forty to half a fathom between two rivers, one of them as wide as the Guadalquivir in Seville, with an over two‐fathom sandbank) where large frigates and flat‐bottom boats can sail through, and from them we can obtain water, which is absolutely beautiful everywhere. The quay is a three‐league beach that mainly consists of a small extension covered in black pebbles, which would make excellent ballast.
The beach sports no ruins or breaks and looks green: it is understood that the vegetation on the coast has not been beaten by the seas, and all the trees grow straight, without any damage or breakage, thus leading us to believe that there are probably no big storms. Apart from being such a spacious port, it boasts another advantage for recreation, for since daybreak in the nearby forest there is a great harmony of different birds – some of them seem to be nightingales, blackbirds, calandra larks, goldfinches and countless swallows; I have seen small parakeets and a large parrot, and leaving these aside there are many species of birds. The crickets and cicadas sing loudly, and every morning we would enjoy the soft perfumes coming from so many different flowers, such as orange blossom and basil. For all of this, as well as other beneficial effects, we concluded that the weather is benign and that nature keeps its order. This port and its bay owe their excellence to the proximity of so many good islands, in particular seven of them that cover two hundred leagues: one of them is very fertile and populated, has an extension of 50 leagues and is at a distance of 12 leagues.
In short, My Lord, I say that in this 15‐degree bay and port, a third higher than the Antarctic Pole, it will be possible to build a big and populated city, and its inhabitants will enjoy all the riches and benefits mentioned before, and those that my limited understanding cannot point out plus those that will be discovered and that time will tell, and which will be connected to the provinces of Chile, Perú, Panamá, Nicaragua, Guatemala, New Spain, Maluku Islands and the Philippines – all of them Y.M.’s possessions. If Y.M. were to become King of these others that I am offering and that I deem so important that more than becoming the key to those I have mentioned before, in all their curiosity and benefit, I leave the greatness of China and Japan, and more provinces from that coast of Asia with their islands, which would be an understatement on my part, I believe, and I can prove it in front of a gathering of mathematicians. I do not think I exaggerate by saying that these territories can house and sustain two hundred thousand Spaniards. Briefly, My Lord, that is the world where Spain is the centre, and it should be noted that its body is the nail.
My Lord, the air is exactly as good as can be seen in what I stated above, and considering that all of us are foreigners there, nobody fell sick with so much work, sweat and drenching, never forgetting to drink water before breakfast and at odd times nor going without the fruits of the earth, under the Moon and the Sun, which was not very hot during the day. Woollens were tolerable, and considering that the natives are burly and strong, and some of them very old, and since they live in houses built directly on the soil, which suggests good health, for if the soil were sick, the natives would not build their houses on it as it is done in the Philippines and other locations I have been to. Consequently, fish and meat cured with salt would last more than two days, and the fruit that we brought from there – in the same way as these two I have here with me – is well preserved even after being picked from the trees. We did not see sandy spots, or giant cacti, or thorny trees, or uprooted trees, or easily flooded mangroves, or marshes, or snow on the highlands, or crocodiles in the rivers, or venomous bugs in the mountains, or ants that damage houses, or chigoes, or ticks, or mosquitoes – a number of positive facts above all other positive facts to suit our wishes, which cannot be underestimated considering that there are areas in the Indies that have been rendered uninhabitable by such pests, and other where there is so much suffering for this reason, as far as I have witnessed. My Lord, these are the greatnesses and the benefits of the lands that I have discovered in God’s honour and glory who took me there and brought me to Y.M.’s presence, where I stand with the same infinite love and determination that I always felt for this cause.
I believe in Y.M.’s sensible counsel, greatness of spirit and Christian piety, the great care that you will certainly give to the population in those lands as much as it is convenient, being the main reason for not leaving them empty, and in that way making the name of Our Lord known, believed, adored and served instead of that of the Devil. Moreover, this will be the gateway for so many peoples in Y.M.’s care to receive all His goodness and remedy, as well as the extra care that should be given if enemies of the Roman Church were to sow their false doctrines and to convert all the good I represent into greater evils, and to call themselves lords of the Indies and ruin them all. I also believe that Y.M. must be aware that such pernicious damage or any other disaster – should it happen in the present or future – would cost millions in gold and thousands of men of dubious remedy. Go ahead, Y.M., because with only a small sum of money spent in Perú once, you will be able to win Heaven, eternal fame and that new world with all its promise. And since there is nobody who asks Y.M. for the gift of such a great gift from God, saved for your blessed time, I request them, and for them I request to be sent off; the galleons are ready, and there is plenty that I have to chase, to sort out and to do, and there is plenty in the Spiritual and Temporal [realms] that is lost every hour and that will never be recovered. If Christopher Columbus became stubborn through his suspicions, what I have seen and touched makes me annoying, and I offer to tell Y.M. that of all the means available, I am aware of one that will aid the achievement of what I suggest, and I promise I will give entire satisfaction in everything. My Lord, this is a great deed, for the Devil wages deadly war, and it is not fair that he should be so powerful when Y.M. is its defender.
Account given by the Indians ‐ a chapter from the second memorial that I submitted to Your Majesty: The Indians from Taumaco Island gave us news of more than 60 major and minor islands populated by black people, by whites with very long and very blond hair, by mulattos and by Indians – people like the one we saw now. In a large part of those territories, there are fifteen islands where pearls can be found, where mother‐of‐pearlshells were seen both in this and another trip, as well as some pearls. It is to be believed that they did not create themselves, nor did those men – that land, that silver or the rest of the things I saw. They also mentioned there is a mainland, and it is understood to be the same as what we saw. After he learned how to make himself understood in our language, Pedro, the Indian that I brought from those areas, corroborated what was said, and gave us news of very large pearls and of large shells capable of housing them, and of very beautiful white women that cover themselves with thin cloaks. He also gave us news of that large territory and of a very good port, of great rivers, high mountain ridges, many people, many kinds of food, and a large number of nutmegs. I say that even if Pedro and the other Indians had not given us such news, by necessity there have to be many large populated territoriesto the East and West of those I saw, as well as an unknown 5,000‐league long territory at 80 degrees of latitude. In short, there is a quarter of the whole Globe to be discovered there. I refer to documents on all this, and to a committee of mathematicians and practical people, for apart from what was said before, there is more to be said and noted, and we can find out there. It should be mentioned that experience has shown that all kinds of riches abound in low‐lying areas – both in the North and South – and that these can and should be expected from the lands I am writing about, not only from the news and clear indications but also because that area is parallel to Perú, with the good disposition of its high mountain ridges.
Summary account from what Hernando de los Ríos Esq., Attorney‐General of the Philippines, reported to me: Miguel Roxo de Brito, a Portuguese navigator, departed from Maluku and took the King of Bayseo and some of his people with him, on 12 of his ships. Sailing from island to island he arrived at one that was unpopulated due to a serpent that ate all the natives. He ended up at New Guinea, called Botan by the locals (it means “mainland”). He said that the natives are black, wear gold on their ears and neck, are merchants and organise a great fair in a town located in the province they call Segat, where slaves can be purchased. They are later taken to a rich island like Sardinia, and there is an inhabitant there who has 1,000 slaves. He also mentioned another province called Hugar, famous for its gold, and another one called Sufia, inhabited by black people and mulattos who spoke about some islands in the area with fair‐haired, white and freckled inhabitants. He referred to another province called Apaa; its natives go naked and some important people wear black and red cloaks.
They do not pay attention to gold because they say iron is better due to its availability and usefulness. There are many coastal rivers; the earth is temperate, healthy and fertile, with large quantities of rice, meadows, coconuts, honey, pigs, goats, buffalos, hens, and he saw many mother‐of‐pearlshells, sandalwood, certain bells and several vessels, as well as people who use darts and arrows as weapons without venom and use vermillion. They spoke about three Spaniards who got married in that territory, which they call the mainland, and there were more who died. Afterwardsthey returned to an island called Noton, where it was heard that the natives use lighting at night produced by stones from the forehead of a cat‐like animal – in the same way as in certain islands to the North East and around the Island of Ievé. The natives of Baiseo worship their ancestors as gods, and when they sail they carry their bones in boxes, as well as sticks to change the direction of the winds.
Copy of what Luis Báez de Torres wrote to me from Manila on June 15th, 1607, received at the end of August 1609. I have the original with me: He says that he sailed along the San Felipe (St. Phillip) and Santiago (St. James) Harbour coast towards the West, where he found other smaller harbours and large rivers, and that the mountain ridges that I saw constitute one large ridge. He says that he found a large land mass at 11.5 degrees and that he followed the coastline towards the West, a quarter North West, and that 2, 4 and 6 leagues away there is a large reef with a channel, several islands and the mainland. He adds that there are several ports and harbours and that it is possible to drop anchor almost along the whole coast in highly sheltered parts. He found a harbour of less than 100 leagues where the heads are separated by a gunshot distance. During the low tide, it loses a powerful flow volume. There are several islands and he has plenty to say about them, as well as about the other harbours.
He says that when he sailed up to 7.5 degrees, he found a 3 to 9 fathom spot with several islands, where he sailed for 40 days from 7.5 to 11 degrees. It is a full archipelago where countless islands, large and small, have black inhabitants whose body frame is larger than that of the San Felipe and Santiago inhabitants. Their weapons resemble those of giants, and both weapons and people look different from those on the mainland. He heard about other territories and other peoples. He says that he returned to the 7.5 degree coast which runs into a corner towards the North East called Canbaru, close to the Papuas’ land, with several other islands and low‐lying areas. They all seem to be part of the same land mass that ends up at 1.5 degrees near Maluku. On the southern strip, he found many islands, both large and smaller, and the last people that he saw, as well as the Maluku inhabitants, were the most despicable that he saw. There is plenty of gold in that land, but he was under orders not to make use of it. He sailed from there to Terrenate, where he left his smallest vessel with 20 men on board to service that position. From Terrenate he sailed to Manila in the Philippines, where he sent Y.M. the account that the State Council has, which both he and I refer to, the account he sent to the Terrenate Field Marshall Esquivel, and the Audience of Manila to the Council of the Indies. He finishes by saying that he departed from the coast at 50 leagues from Maluku Islands and that it would take at least 10 years to finish exploring what he saw. In spite of the confusing manner in which the account has been written, the continuous land strip that is mentioned is real, with its highs and lows, showing over 800 leagues, excluding the multitude of different sized islands. It should be noted that what the Taumaco Indians signalled to us, what Pedro the Indian said, added to what I say in my writings – as can be seen in the first and second memorial – fits with what this letter about the mainland says. Many islands, men of different coloured skins, greatness. Because of this and other facts, what the Indians have said about the pearls and the silver must be expected to be true, as well as the rest. For this reason I say, Sir, that it is necessary to stay in those populated areas to explore, to sight very many territories and to find out what there is in each of them, for it will not be possible otherwise to make several large gains from both men and women, with the promise of so many discovered territories and of many more to be discovered.
Summary account from Ruy González de Sequeira’s account (Maluku Mayor Captain), on what he saw as well as what he heard about those territories during his time in government, given in Madrid: He says that many vessels arrived at Tidore from New Guinea, full of dark skinned people with loose hair, beautiful eyes and common disposition similar to ours, who told him that there is a large territory there with thousands of large and small islands populated by people like them and some others who are very white and fair. He had a a young girl from that area, as white and fair as the Flemish, and he said there is plenty of gold in those territories which the natives use to make chains. He had plenty of them and he also had chokers that women wear around their necks and bracelets, and men have them on their sword pommels. They have silver, which they do not esteem, and pearls, which they do not pay attention to, but they grill and eat oyster meat. Some of them are as large as the giant clams, which they call via and whose meat can feed three men for a whole day. There is amber and civet, but they do not know how to obtain it from cats and they kill them to eat.
There is iron, copper, tin, lead and sulphur; there are plenty of hens, pigs, long‐ fleece sheep; goats, buffalos and cows are as large as Andalusian ones. There are rabbits and other fox‐like animals; there is a certain kind of cat with wings from their shoulders to their breasts that allow them to fly long distances. There are so many elephants that they use their tusks to make corrals to keep small cattle. There is white tar, honey, wax, rice, and it is true that there is highly nutritious, long‐lasting hardtack. There are inames and other edible roots, bananas of different kinds, several coconuts and sweet canes, but they do not know how to obtain sugar. There is salt and there are garlics, onions and some giant trees that give a kind of cabbage and lettuce. There is pepper, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg, which the Indians do not esteem. There are infinite earth almonds, oranges, limes, lemons and many other fruit sources, as well as several species of fish and tortoiseshells, a highly valuable merchandise. They obtain wine from certain palm trees and they use the leaves to cover houses and vessels. There is a herb called Gamuto, used to make ropes and riggings that do not rot in the rain or sun. There are many red and white parrots, large turtledoves and partridges and many other bird genera, both large and small, as well as certain birds of unknown origin which were never seen alive and they are found dead. Their feathers are of different beautiful colours which the Indians wear as plumes. There is sandalwood, ebony, large canes and good timbers. There is an abundance of all the mentioned species. There are neither mosquitoes nor venomous animals, only some large and foolish non‐venomous snakes.
It has been mentioned that there are animals with a lighting stone on their forehead, living on a North Eastern island. He says that the inhabitants are nice‐to‐deal‐with real people (sic), recognised, pleasant, liberal and easy to please. They become very sensitised if someone lays their hands on their heads and if their women are taken away from them. They travel as merchants with slaves, gold, amber, wax, iron and many more of the merchandises mentioned above. They exchange the most valuable ones for cotton clothing in blue, red and other colours. They value glass beads, mirrors, scissors, combs, bells and similar items. It is likely that a ransom was paid for small 50 real items and they exchanged them for 1,800 ducat items. If they had known, they would have cost 5,000 or 6,000. He also says that from Maluku to New Guinea there are several large and small islands ruled by a king that does not recognise the others. None of them is powerful. Their natives are dark‐skinned and most of them are good‐looking and with long hair. They go naked, but some of them wear garments made from a certain fibre that they bring in from Maluku. They are Gentile and they live as they please; they have neither worship places nor adore anything. Their weapons are arrows and cane darts with wooden tips, swords, crises and bucklers. They are spirited and their vessels have sails and oars. They are great fishermen and self‐styled musicians.
They have plenty of netting, looms and earthenware, and make a living on what the earth gives them. It should be noted that New Guinea is the top end of the Southern Territories that I am talking about, and that the people and their customs referred to are symbolic. I note that the further away one goes from the Philippines, where gold and other valuables are held in high esteem, the less that those Indians are aware of what they have. That way, we can leave aside the 33 islands discovered by pioneering Governor Álvaro de Mendaña, which he called Solomon Islands, added to Santacruz (Holy Cross) Island and Mendoza’s four Marquesas Islands, which he discovered in the second trip where I took part. Leaving aside the 300 leagues of coastline in New Guinea discovered in the past, the valid discovery as such consists of 500 leagues of mainland and the large number of islands referred to. My point is that of the very many territories that can be found in the hidden part, I saw good peoples on islands between 10 and 18 degrees in the 700 leagues eastward from San Felipe and Santiago Harbour, and these cannot be here without others in the vicinity. Considering this account, their number adds up to eight [spots] where the riches and greatness of the Southern part have been mentioned at different times and in diverse locations, as shown in my writings. It should be noted how careful the Almighty God was with those creatures, for the longer we take to go in their help, the more our Divine Majesty hurries us, with new and real relationships, making them more certain, though the early ones are shorter. For these and other reasons I have given so many times, we should expect twice as many spiritual goods, mainly because that is the way it seems, though due to their condition and providence God has kept the best territories from us to conquer the spirit of those who populate them, which will be followed by all the natives’ conversion in the honour and glory of God and for what was suggested to Y.M.
Copy of the above mentioned memorial number 16, where there are some added chapters, to declare what I succinctly suggested: Regarding the case that I have suggested to Y.M. more than a year and a half ago, I told Y.M. that I have submitted 16 memorials – adding this one – and retold my memories. I say that in order to carry out what I owe God and Y.M. and with the difficulties I experienced trying to bring it to its current good condition, with my great love and wishes to carry out the discovery of unknown territoriesthat Y.M. happily entrusted me with, and God showed them in all their greatness, richness and fertility, exactly as I have described them. Their natives are Gentile and I remind you of the eternal penalty that awaits them and that they are under Y.M.’s care, whose Christian piousness assures me that he can hear their pitiful clamours, and my continuous and humble requests. He will do me the favours that I expect for my dispatch today, with efficient means to go to their help in Y.M.’s name, with the claim of what I aspire to do there and the belief that God is looking, and that there is death, judgement, hell and glory for whoever does the right or the wrong thing to humanity, as well as if Y.M. were looking at me with reward or punishment in his hand. First, considering the danger that those territories and peoples are in, it is good to note and to fear what could happen with or without the arm or a powerful king because pirates, who sail all the seas looking for vessels that they can rob, can gather with all the expense, hard work and risks that we know, looking for places they cannot find, in order to populate them. They can go to San Felipe and Santiago Harbour and populate a settlement there, remembering that it is a known fact all over the world that they have been discovered and that they are to be coveted and adapted.
There, My Lord, they will mean to all those peoples the same evils and damages that these days affect all the Indians from all the Indies, so that they will not accept or believe, and in order to be accepted and believed, to step in giving rather than forcing or offending them as it happens elsewhere, preaching the long and wide life, measuring themselvesto suit both parties’ taste, and in other worse mannersthat they will easily find, they will use those spirits to hear, receive and follow the preaching of their errors, which is what should be felt the most, and they will teach them to navigate and to fight our way as well, and will give them offensive and defensive weapons. Since they are many and highly spirited, these are enough reasons, leaving aside others, that will make it impossible to preach the Gospel to them as Y.M. expects. Since they are under Y.M.’s care, if they condemn themselves as Gentile, they will also condemn themselves as heretic, and apart from losing all these souls, Y.M. will lose those great territories and millions in gold that promise to last long, and the enemies could very well wreak havoc from there in all the other provinces where Y.M. is the lord. On their perimeter, Y.M. will have to build fortresses in all the Southern seas to address the issue, to equip and sustain their requests, which will mean high expenses, or at least that Y.M. will not be able to spare a naval fleet to defend the coasts, which will be as costly as the profits obtained in Perú with the added inconvenience that friendly vessels will not sail because they may be robbed as well. For this reason, sea transportation will be lost and Y.M. will lose his rights, his vassals and his assets, and the provinces will lose their best advantages. These [friendly] ships will be certainly boarded to make use of them or sink them, making [pirates] the masters of the seas. The harbour will turn into La Rochelle, full of thieves who will be able to come and go as they please. It must be noted that in the same way as Cortés and Pizarro did, with very few people and weapons, they started the American monarchy. In the year 1600, 14 vessels travelled through the Strait of Magellan. Since they did not have a known port for them to make a stop or stay, they just sailed on.
It will be possible for 100‐200 [ships] to enter, and should the Aniam Straight exist – which they have been looking for – 1,000 will gain that position. In order to recover it, it sounds as though it will be possible for [pirates] to inflict damagesfrom there upon all the kingdoms in the Eastern and Western Indies, and in all the territoriesI discovered, which are North and South of that strait, with very favourable winds to come and go. Besides, it is possible to establish connections with China, Japan, Cathay and other Asian provinces and to deprive Spain of all – or a large share – of its commerce. For these and other reasons, Sir, I say that it is convenient to make it known that if that strait exists, the Indies or the other [territories] that currently cannot be reached cannot experience the above mentioned damage. If it is convenient to discover that [Aniam]strait, I offer myself to discover it from the South, relinquishing the 20,000‐ducat lifelong pension requested for its discovery, added to the 60,000 ducats that would cost to dispatch people and vessels. It must be warned that there is no difficult navigation or hard work for nations that are on the quest for riches or their better advantage, and that Southern nations do not ignore what good sailing is. In the same way as they go to the Indies to load salt from the Araya salt‐pan, they would be much better off going to the New World, to rob and to hurt the Old one, and either of them would start a new monarchy for themselves. There are beautiful white women there or of any other colour they want whom they can marry. Sir, the importance of all the damages mentioned here lies in the fact that they will require a remedy, that is, taking care of the straits, or the coasts of America, or of the new territories, and this cannot be achieved without spending several million in gold and thousands of men. Victory will be dubious, as well as the relationships among those natives, for the above mentioned reasons.
The longer the remedy takes, their resistance will be greater and so will the expenses, the losses and the damage between both genders, as well as for ourselves. It must be noted as well that these enemies can cause damage on a round trip because it would take place over Y.M.’s territories and weakened ports. Such damages – added to what Spain will endure, not having the silver from the Indies – appear to be unnumbered and [the enemies] will be even more so by becoming rich and powerful while impoverishing all Y.M.’s kingdoms. Y.M., I ask you to consider that everything I have referred to here, added to the vicinity of peoples who live in freedom of conscience and [who are easy] preys, and who aspire to what is known and what is secret – both in the present and future – is not good for the Indies, where ill‐treated natives want to escape subjugation and a large number of slaves want their freedom, and where there are so many spirited mulattos, so many lost white people, many who sing their grievances and bad rewards, others who are obligated and some more that do not want riches to be removed from their land. In short, Sir, wherever work makes people bitter and is frowned upon cunningly and unfairly, whoever digs and leaves fallow land and [makes] the new inhabitants cry, I want to say that idleness will be widespread and loved and there will be someone who will act upon threatening news. If I have said too much, I still have much more to say [about] everything that Y.M. can and must remedy, without wasting any more time, by populating that harbour, for it will cost only 500,000 ducats spent once in Perú, where the journey will start, which will be of great benefit for those territories, as well as for the good ones where sowing will take place, in order to reap everything that God gives at all times. It seems that the strength of my words lies upon Y.M.’s acquisition of the kingdoms I offer, so that he can preserve those he already has.
Second, Y.M. is very interested in settling, pacifying, converting, teaching and securing so many high resources by spending 500,000 ducats only once, noting that if it is done once, it will be possible to pacify the Kingdom of Chile and there would be no need of having a prison there at a cost of 250,000 ducats per year, nor would there be so many consumed and busy Spaniards or other inflicted and feared damages, or so much unquietness in that Kingdom, or the need of so much care. Sir, considering that there are monies for Chile, and there have been millions in gold for other smaller parts and thousands of men to employ, I beg Y.M. to show those great and rich territoriesthat I discovered with my hard work a bit of love, some money and a few of the very many men that overpopulate Perú, which will help to start the foundation of many cities of concerted government in due course. Many great islands that have been already discovered will be populated. More new territories will be discovered so that from all of them it will be possible to choose and seize all the riches they have as well as the comforts and safety that are promised to all Y.M.’s Kingdoms. Believe me, Y.M., that when it comes to spending your revenue, it will only be on the bricks and mortar that the mission needs in order to build, shine, last, fill and satisfy Y.M.’s Christian zeal and what will give the most aspired and expected honour and glory in this life and in the next, [not to mention] that persuading you to spend these monies is the greatest of my services. If I aspired to honour, profit or downtime, or other benefit, that is, my own interests instead of the greater good of this mission, I would have already shown my colours, both on the occasions that I travelled to those territories or in this Court, requesting great favours of Y.M. and paperwork for others and going with them to Perú or New Spain, where there would be no shortage of people to associate with, in order to pursue what is explained in the next chapter. When a private individual offers to go by himself requesting a financial advantage, he himself should say what motivates him. I say that divine work does not mix with some of the human work I have seen, forged in a fleshy heart with no spirit.
If neither healthy means nor the length of the mission are observed, but only personal benefit is considered and evils are sought and wanted, though through others’ hatred, scandals and losses of kingdoms, apart from this one, and since they cannot meet costs with their own resources, others’ are sought after. In this way, there is bad company with similar intentions. Everybody looks for others at the same time who do not have a place where they depart from for causes that are now well understood, and the hope that such workers will certainly do as they must, where only insolence resounds and disturbs a whole kingdom and dissipates great works, St. Peter’s miracles become necessary to repair the damage that is done. Apart from this, it is the power that governs suffering and conceals others where malice does its best, as well as the reports on expenses, dangers and their importance, the great feats that were done, the big rewards requested and how little they are deserved. Since there will be many complaining parties, they are all easy to group together with the same resolve that is more than enough to create a thousand disconcerts in a body made up of several talking heads who are so different in their opinions, tastes and ideas, in the belief that theirs should reign supreme or at least that the one that actually is supreme should not dare punish, refrain, upset or give the slightest indication of ill‐will. On the contrary, for the simple purpose of being ill‐ preserved, improved, fertilised,sustained, it would defend those that through this and more will take the licence to ask (as they do) what has the King put here? And the others will not answer anything.
Everything that the eye can see and is expected from those territories has been set up and supported with our money, industriousness and shoulders, and that is the way we send Spain everything it has, in exchange for what we are sent, to visit and to govern one and many who treat us as badly as they want without considering our merits as well as the very few they have, and for pointing them out for other their other objectives, their most certain mistakes, and as a finishing touch on their return, a big danger of squeezing resources. Not fully satisfied yet, they take from [those resources] without scruples because next year it will be a new year and we are the columns upon which such machinery operates and which they may shatter in any case. It may fall later or on the way down to their ruin, with the discord they saw, and not stopping at anything to their memory. Loss of love and fear is very near; Y.M. is far away, and after indifference, hatred and ill‐ will become certain, and with such feelings a whole revolution can be feared, and it all starts by weighing up, or as it is said, if there is one who can start the hunt. There have been several examples of what I said, and a bit more to say as well. If Y.M. spends 500,000 ducats, he will completely shut the door to the above mentioned perils, as well as to those mentioned below, and to the obligation of supporting perpetual governmentsrun by those who think that because of their expenses they are free lords, owing no pay to anybody.
Even though they, and their nearest and dearest, may claim the opposite of what it seems, they say it in a loud voice, which in my view constitutes a loss of royal revenue, a damage to new peoples, the loss of so many souls, the kingdoms’ ruin, care without remedy and the enormous offences against God, which is what should be felt the most. If this were to be tried on Y.M.’s account and similar enterprises, or by a private individual, I cannot see any difference whether it finishes well or badly, nor is there any more difficulty or distance than to know or not to know, or to wish or not to wish. In short, it is all about making such a correct choice that it secures the case, or throwing it to the wolves. If Y.M. is going to spend his own finances, the best results will come from choosing people from all states and occupations, taking only those who are necessary, following Y.M.’s Christian instructions, having some help at hand. Y.M.’s strongest suit is to walk in the light, so that what the natives from the Indies say will not be said later: that they were all measured with the same yardstick, or that a fence was painted and made of people from all states with scissorsto shear each other, or if others said that God told Adam to eat by the sweat of his brow, that it was good for him and all of his town to sweat so that he would eat one of us, or another one who was collecting monies to buy some justice, or another one whose theme was to say Spaniards and two of mine, what do you want in my territory that I do not see you taking a rest and giving orders; and considering the worst of our crimes, and judging from the smallest of your complaints, we do very little for you.
It would be more than enough if you were our pure governors and not your absolute and dissolute lords; if you use seniority as yardstick, you are the foreign upstarts; if you look for owners, we are the owners of everything you are looking for; if you want reason and justice, you have none to remove our land from us; if you want advantage, we are as naked and barefoot as we used to be; if you want people growth, we have almost finished with your chaotic greed; if you want a good government, at the time of our Inca King there was no idleness, homicide, adultery, robbery, cheating, force, grievance, injustice, cruelty, or tyranny that was not diligently or faithfully found out, abruptly ended with no respect and rigourously punished. We lack plenty of this and we also have it in excess. [Another Indian’s lord] advised him not to allow deceit. The Indian said that he could not be deceived because he was already a Christian. His lord asked him how that could be understood. The Indian replied: “Because I learned how to gamble, swear, lie, deceive, argue, steal and kill”, to which his lord replied: “So is that what being a Christian means?”, and the Indian said: “Yes, because you have taught us; and someone else said that if you praise humility, how can you be so arrogant that it defies reason and confuses all of us; if you say that poverty is very good, how can you attempt to become rich with such might and against the fairness you owe us, build houses, dress and eat without measure, suit yourself and not tire of anything that appears to be good, for you chase it until you obtain it.” Another one said: “If we owe you, as you say, give us money, for you are like holm oaks that have to be shaken for their fruit; if we ask for what you owe us, you say ‘these Indians, they are drunk’; since we became Christians you do not honour us any more; for the many benefits you receive from us, you afflict us; so long as you are in charge, you do not give us anything in return; I do not understand you, nor do I know less because you said you will go to heaven and we to hell, with more suffering.”
I say that if a man does not know others, he will tell them to eat something he has never seen, even if it is only for the benefits they will supposedly receive, and he tells them to save whoever gives it to them and they can see that he does not want it, that he has doubts, or does not want to eat it. To those who say that Indians have their faults, I also say that we are not saints here, having a greater obligation to live honestly, and that of the wrongs that are talked about they inflict as much as they can to our people, who started before thousands of them did and continue to do in such a way that they can be found guilty, in the same way an Indian was (as I heard) by the Governor of Santa Marta, Mancio de Contreras, who asked “How is it possible that being in charge, you have ended peace and given us war?” He replied that among his people it was neither words nor finished peace, after having been deceived by us so many times. They say that the very few Indians that come to Spain do not find honour, riches, relief, whereas the very many Spaniards that go to their territories find at least someone who breaks bread with them. I say that whatever was said needs to be seen, that those Indians are not as ignorant as they are painted, and that if we had honoured, taught and given them time to rest, they would have learned how to see, perfect, refine, say and do as gladly and usefully. I also say that they have not made the most of the many tight royal letters patents that Y.M. granted them, and the remedy has to be applied hastily. However, Sir, all the journeys made in the Indies on other parties’ account were as badly planned as it has been seen, or they were ineffectual and did not escape losses and damages.
Most of the time (as an example) I saw Y.M. give instructions for the journey organised by pioneer Álvaro de Mendaño (where I participated in 1595), bankrolled with royal resources. Thirty‐eight years of spiritual benefit would not have been lost from past to present in all the unknown territories, a loss that has been as big as it sounds, nor would I have worked and suffered for so many years to free them from oblivion, which was no small loss for them, for Y.M. and for me. In the end, the good adelantado (pioneer) spent his finances, did whatever he could and ended up losing his life; I am giving mine as well after having spent my finances; I keep my counsel about the rest just by saying that whatever can be happen and can be seen should be prevented, mainly on principle. What I mean is that good management can go far, and for execution it is important to look for and attract good men. In order to correctly understand how valuable the goods of both genders are, I give an example: I say that if disorder eliminated several million Indians referred to in a memorial that I submitted to Y.M., when it comes to the Western Indies a good [royal] order would have left us with several millions of them today, and even if there were only these, it would be as great a gain for the heavens and the earth as it sounds. If only less than two million who are alive today have produced from eight to fourteen million in gold, with my example there would be one‐hundred and fifty millions in gold coming every year. This could have happened and had it been half; out of this half [Spain would have received] half. It remains to be seen who will pay God, the Indians and Y.M. for all the past damages, as well as for those that will occur until the end of the world, which are those innumerable damages that astonish those that consider them. If we go in greater depth, we would lose insight and count and this should be well understood and not imitated.
I confess my share of the guilt and my share of what I am responsible for, and pay for such infinite damage as I might have for not having acted preemptively there. I have no shoulders to carry that weight, nor am I of the opinion that others should shoulder it, and these speeches and advice obligate Y.M. to spend his finances generously, so that there will be nothing to regret or to pay later. I give Y.M. tokens of my care, wishes and preventions towards the population for the good administration of the Southern territories where Y.M. wishes to send me. I will go with the determination to introduce all good Christian, political and military discipline among us, with God’s favour. To achieve this I seek Y.M.’s help, and within my possibilities scientific, experienced and conscientious persons that I can find in Spain, for in Spain they can be easily found, since it is convenient for me to receive their advice and to agree – as required in such a case – on what should be done for those peoples along spiritual and temporal lines in our trip to their territories, so that they will make steady progress, which they should say in their own words and all other nations in the world should sing to. Together with warriors, sailors and businesspeople, work should be divided and help should be offered should they so require, both when present or absent, but either way it is very important. I also require artists and all kinds of tradespeople who are very necessary there, so that both can build the first city, which will be a model for all those on that side of the world, and they will not be mud wall cities or republics of disconcert which could bring several major evils without remedy for both genders.
If we consider both ecclesiastic and secular persons, the number I referred to is eighty. I have already shown Y.M. how such fundamental foundational rocks can be taken from Spain without paying more than what Y.M. wants to. I asked for 1,000 men – the smallest number required in such faraway territories. There is plenty to sustain them with, to make them comfortable and to allocate them to fortresses, shipyards and sugarcane mills, to indigo, silver and gold mines, pearling, cement factories and breeding, and also to make discoveries by land and sea, to send warnings and treaty ships, to found the first city, to erect the second, to populate. Those who fall sick or become unavailable will be sent back for not being the right people. Since many will be officers, it is important to save time, with the proviso that I do not ask for such power in order to kill or mistreat the natives, whom I want and aspire to rigorousjustice for – the same treatment I want and do not want for myself, but power is an efficient means to carry out the attempt easily and in a short time. The reason is that if they see that we are strong, they will not dare seize the occasion, and if [such occasion] does not present itself, they will not be hurt in a necessary defence operation. What I mean is that those peoples neither speak our language nor can guess what we attempt to do, nor are aware of all the mysteries of faith that they will be taught.
It is true that they will not consider bad works against them as good, regardless of the reason, and it is good works that will open their eyes, oblige them, reassure them and make them love and believe in us. With all this, religious people will very well arrange their ministry, and if that is not the case in any way, they group themselves against the Devil should he want to destroy their good work. We can defend ourselves without offending [the natives], defend them against their enemies – if they have any – protect those who already are or want to become Christian – should there be someone to prevent it – and to defend the land against the enemies of God’s Church and of Y.M.’s that appear there, as well as to defend ourselves from ourselves. This is what power can do, under penalty if the right thing is not done, unless it were by miracle. I remind Y.M. that a good, fulfilled and very timely dispatch is of the essence to start such a great mission, that true help will secure what was done and that with just laws and holy institutions it is possible to open a brief and secure pathway to create a Republic in those territories (which can be called concerted). It will be created by real and substantial men, so that they can think ahead and leave their secure possessions here in order to populate, pacify, defend and sustain others’ territories, great favours and honours. Generosity and freedom are very necessary, based upon granting land and natives to individual settlers, all the while preventing landowners from saying that they are masters of Indians, for it is possible to give every one of them their due by banishing forced personal service and allowing voluntary service.
With all these favours, Y.M. will earn everybody’s goodwill – both Spaniards and Indians – in such a way that later it may be said that great part of the world was acquired for such a small price, securing both spiritual and temporal goods, as many as there are and can be in this mission, about which there is so much to say, to consider and to organise, rather than otherwise. This mission is the greatest in the present and in the future. I advise Y.M. that I fear it will end before it even starts. I mean to say that Y.M.’s greatness would grow as long as he becomesthe ruler of more well acquired and governed peoples, sustained in peace and justice. I note that those who know say that the decline in the Western Indies stemmed mostly from discontinuing the system of granting land and native inhabitants to a settler and from such settlerstaking advantage of it too hastily. I also concur that if Y.M. had those thirty million natives that were found at the beginning, there would be twice as much wealth and that potential fortunes would be assured, with a warning that if more Indians are wanted, there are no monies, that there will be no Indians for twenty years and that silver and gold are not the worst losses, for there have been countless others, that those existing today are priceless and that the future can only be remedied by God. The Brothers of John of God that I requested will be in charge of all the hospitals that will be founded, so that they can cure all the natives in them comfortably. With such a significant benefit, the natives will feel obligated to love us, and for this reason they will believe in and follow us. [The Brothers] will also cure our people of any diseases in separate quarters, in short, they will perform the Fourteen Works of Mercy, which may be their responsibility as people who practice charity under the local government (Cabildo), which they would be accountable to, will help them and supply whatever they require.
In each one of these hospitals, there will be four or more priests in separate quarters who will administer the sacraments, bury the dead, say masses and in all quarters will look after and give consolation to the sick and help the dying both in hospitals and cities – a necessary and meritorious deed. Care should be taken not to take older soldiers, or sick people, or notorious lowlives, or the self‐ entitled and arrogant from Perú – those who believe that nothing is enough for them – least of all those who believe that nothing is enough for them, and even less so those who only think of their self‐interest or those who say that God never gives peace. Officers should be practical and careful to train their soldiers in modesty and dexterity. If possible, they should be sailors and artillerymen who run whenever there are no soldiers who say what one of them who used to rob and kill Indians said – that after dead he would put his soul on a hill so that whoever owned it could come and fetch it. If God conceded me the favour of choosing the most convenient people for such an honourable and glorious enterprise, I would request your whole Apostolic Council to be sent.
If the Roman Pontiff had not said “You can ask for as much as you can, for your request is just” (such as the happily remembered Clement VIII did), I would have asked for those priests and monks who work miracles. If Y.M. asked me who are the best people to start such a mission, which is so important for Y.M., I would ask you to send your whole State Council, for it is very Christian, wise and cautious. The three things I can assure you of are great love, great wishes to do the right thing in this mission, great care, diligence and watchfulness to look for God’s means – the most convenient [strategy] to convert such a large number of people. Remember, Y.M., I said that if my person did not serve the purpose of this mission, Y.M. should send someone more convenient, since the several million present and future souls of those peoples should not stand to lose if I am not deserving enough or for any other reason. Should it be necessary, I would serve you in any capacity you wished me to, and I would sign my name on it. I would thus reach the three titles I aspire to, of which I already have two, that is, eye witness, applicant for this cause and guide to those who travel to lead those peoples. The reasons I give to start the journey in the City of Kings in Perú are that, since the port of El Callao is only two leagues away, there are many ships from many places and several sailors plus whatever is necessary for sailing, and there is a large amount of hardtack, flour, pulses, wine, oil, fish, salt and many good supplies which in my experience are very long‐lasting. From San Felipe and Santiago harbour, I am familiar with the winds, the timing and the course because I have sailed the seas in those regions; I am very knowledgeable and efficient in that city and its divisions.
There are plenty of honourable people in that kingdom, and it is easy to sail from Lima to Callao, where families can come aboard with all the supplies that will be shipped. With God’s help I will arrive at the above mentioned harbour where I will make a stop for the following purposes: first, a fortress will be erected to accommodate and protect people from the natives or from other enemies that may appear. Second, a large area will be sown with our corn and rice, and many other of our pulses, seeds and roots. Burning or pruning that sown plot of land will not be allowed as easily as the others. Hardtack, flour, wine and oil will be stored with the rest of the spare supplies, both for return trips and for people to sustain themselves while sowing and food gathering takes place, while we use the ransom items that will be shipped for that purpose, to keep the Indians happy and to obtain whatever valuable items are in their possession. Even though the soil is extremely fertile, it is not wise to arrive without food supplies, since their use cannot be delayed for a single day and it would not be fair to seize the Indians’ – this will shock them and thwart our intentions. In the third place, smaller frigates and brigs will be built, which can be used with sails or oars, to set off on discovery voyages and for transport. Fourth, the goodwill of elders will be gained with deeds as a means to attract the younger, as well as the inhabitants of neighbouring and faraway territories, and the islands in the area.
By using soft methods, we will attempt to bring as many Indians as possible to our company, in order to treat them well and clothe them, and to send them back to their land so that they can inform the others. Some will stay so that they can teach their languages and learn ours, as well as give news and answersto our questions, and having reassured them with our kind, faithful, informed and long‐lasting treatment, I am certain (considering what I learned from them) that we will attract them to the existence of God, and to obey the Holy Apostolic See and Y.M. Fifth, we will feel the pulse of the seasons, till the land, discover its greatness and secrets, understand the natives’ way of life, explore the coasts from East to West, as well as the nearby and faraway islands. After learning as much as possible, a description will be written, adding all the information given by the natives about the current state, including settlements and the form of government, with great diligence. Some of those natives – young boys and adult men – can be useful here and there. When they go back, messages will be sent to Lima and México at different times, so that Y.M. will be kept thoroughly informed, and can agree with, add or delete whatever is convenient so that the mission will be run in such a way that the present is excellent and the future will be greatly improved. In short, Sir, I want to perpetuate three features, which are the manner in which idleness – scourge of the world – will be uprooted and judged very rigorously, while doors will be frankly open to virtue, with great rewards, and how charity will be practised with fervour. Sixth, priests and monks will teach the soldiers how big an offence against God it is to kill the souls and bodies of those peoples who will now have Gospel preachers in their territories and at their doorstep, so that they can listen to, believe in and follow them. The offence against Holy Mother Roman Church will be enormous if they disturb their holy attempt.
If those peoples are well guided, they will triumph with eternal glory and God will appreciate being thus respected, and that his power and providence will be more trusted than our weapons and industriousness. In short, they will be told that their mission is purely to be at the service of His Divine Majesty, whom their work will shine for, and rewards are certain. This way, it will never be said that in God’s name we are going to dispossess those peoples of what God himself has given them. At least, if it is plentiful and very good, what we are going to teach them is that we will sell it expensively, and that without any price fixing we will pay out of our own pockets and leave little or nothing to others. V.M., rest assured that you will be well served there; if there are no attempts to truly serve God Our Lord, those who have served will be given millions of spiritual rewards in heaven and earth, which is all that can be sought after. On the contrary, for grave crimes there will be immense punishment both ways. At war, the pusillanimous will meticulously become stronger, and the novices’ eyes will be opened, as well as the eyes of those who have limited understanding, for even though they may see the greater good, I do not know if all of them can see it, and they can inflict damage even if they do. There will be a conversation with all the people together representing them,so that they will be obligated to uphold the standards and flags that other Spanish settlers raised and upheld in so many parts of the world that are not as kind and hopeful as those territories, with the innumerable triumphs and riches that were won for both majesties in heaven and earth; the honour and fame that they earned overcoming difficulties, scorning dangers, tackling tasks and anything else that could have had them lose their rewards and the great name of their homeland – Spain, which is more deserving that life itself. If God has taken them to such good territories, where they can gain what others have not lost with great advantage, they should not forget the little esteem deserved by whoever behaves less courageously than others do, even more so where honour, advantage and fame will cost so little. Eighth, attempts will be made to discipline all people well; they will receive good treatment, if there are fallouts, they will make peace and avoid point scoring, siding and challenging; duel laws will remonstrate and cast aside the affronting party. Those who affront will be affronted back and punished for having left their own honour aside, and that will bring in reparation and avoid the evils created by laws that are against God.
Life will be lived with care and with whatever else is explained. Ninth, to conclude, it will be agreed that for everybody in general there is a God, a world, an Adam, a sin, a redemption, a Church, a Pastor, a King, good and evil, a reward, a punishment, a death, a trial, a glory, a hell and an eternity. After that, the foundation of a city will start on the river bank and by the sea; as it has been said, its blocks and streets will be flat, and as wide and long as necessary. There will be five plazas; in four of them there will be convents without any other buildings [nearby],so that they will be comfortable and in good command of the area. Twelve streets will start at the middle plaza; the main church will be there; Y.M.’s house and the Town Hall will be in the other four, as can be seen in the plan. There will be four parishes and all the nine plazas will be at the same distance; the five larger ones will be on two perpendicular streets. In this way, all the city inhabitants will have a church and a plaza nearby. Houses will be designed according to position and trade. Since walls will be the same size on all four sides and all streets will be main thoroughfare, there will be gardens or corralstowards the centre of a block; castles will be built in the most convenient areas to defend the city and the port, and all the buildings will be erected at the same time so that it will not be necessary to make renovations or to move city later on. As desired, México’s heights and Lima’s port, all of this and much more can be built comfortably there because of the abundance of materials and the inhabitants’ good disposition – I do not mean in one day or one month, but once the government is well set up and the design and construction of the city are well under way, sanely and correctly, they will be finished once God is fully served. His power and will are to be trusted and all favour and help should be expected, both for what was explained as well and for whatever else is aspired to. If Y.M. agrees, it would be convenient to set up three other populations: one on that harbour, another one as close to Perú as possible, and a third one on the way to the Philippines, so that all these provinces can connect with each other easily as well as with those areas between them, to receive what is brought in and to distribute it, giving what they have in exchange.
To benefit all natives in general over a shorter period of time, it must be ensured that no city has less than 400 inhabitants, not only to preserve and increase our population but also theirs. If it were convenient to add Indian population to towns, they should first be taught how to build their houses with stone or bricks, with large enough corrals, kitchens, beds, tables, chairs, boxes, and whatever else is necessary, helping them to understand little by little how good these arrangements are for them and requesting their consent. Proceeding in any other way would mean killing them, dispossessing them of their home ground and leading them to build houses by themselves wherever they can, sawing and reaping, and they will die of sadness, scarcity and work in excess. There will be seminars where children will be gathered and taught with their parents’ consent, all under the zealous care of priests and monks. If this were not enough, other methods will be sought to teach the subjects and to guide them to whatever they show an inclination towards. The most hopeful ones will be guided towards priesthood and once ordained will be sent elsewhere to preach their parents and other natives, which as far as I understand can yield many great effects upon the souls, for it must be believed that the son or father who becomes aware that father or son will be condemned will force love upon pain; both of them will tirelessly do more than the usual, and everybody in general will be well listened to and even better believed.
An example of tears and insistence, living witnesses of St. Monica’s pain and love, but remembering that we neither cry nor perspire. It should be noted that in those territories we will find elderly and young people, children and unborn babies and that exercising all our power to reduce them to our holy Catholic Faith, if we cannot finish with the old, we will with the young, and if not, with the children. When they become men, the unborn will become young people taught in seminaries and the old will not be walking the world, so the Christian Faith will be introduced at an early age and there is no reason to doubt the conversion of well‐treated Gentiles taught by example. In short, Sir, everything comes down to good sowing, good benefit, diligence to reap, keep, preserve and increment as much as possible, not contenting ourselves with little, for it is only in good deeds that excesses seem good, in the same way as temperance for other things. What I say, Sir, can be proved, since there is no reason to question the cause without testing it with the passing of time because in the Western Indies there have never been nor are any Indigenous Clerics or friars, nor Indian nuns, and I would like them to respond: “They do not want us as Clerics or friars, but as dressed‐up slaves, nor do they want us as nuns, but to carry cushions and similar objects to churches”. Considering the little growth that faith has experienced among those Indians, I say that I do not know whether it was their fault or ours, and I want to do the right thing by others whose conversion I seek, according to their needs and our service, for God will give what those Gentile creatures should have.
I remember that all Christians were Gentile and we owe it to those twelve great disciplinarians that they had and we have as teachers. I want more, for in order to learn, believe in, love and serve God, pray to Him with faith and to expect all that is fair to ask from His great kindness, it is necessary to eradicate those peoples’ ignorance. This is possible and feasible with good will on our part and trust in God, who has been so kind as to give life to our memory, light to understanding, sharpness to will, and everything so that a Kingdom, a people, a whole lineage cannot be judged from the good or bad of only one Indian, and disciples will be as good as their masters. There will be an order to build schools so that [the Indians] can learn to read, write and count; Universities will be founded to read all the allowed arts and sciences. I will take the best masters at the necessary trades so that they can build houses, beds and tables; wear our dress and shoes, and forget their past lives, dress and language; plant all their and our fruit trees; sow our and their seeds; breed all cattle and beasts, and with all this there will be good tithes that benefit mining and pearling; [natives] will become contractors, which will allow them to acquire fifths and rights; they will learn what honour and shame are, and it is certain that if they learn these two jewels, they will appreciate them as they deserve, and for this and other reasons they will wear and spend all the things that go from Spain on larger fleets – whether they go for four, ten‐thousand Spaniards or millions of Indians – and politicians who have gold, silver, pearls and many other valuables already referred to, as well as others that industry gives, considering that the land has so many riches, and from my perspective they are greedy enough to go and explore; from their perspective they have so much good disposition to learn, and from the point of view of reason, their strength is their motivation.
It must be noted that for both genders it is enough to make a Kingdom rich, and each of the above mentioned benefits will make Y.M. rich as well as the land and sea, which have shown so many advantages on their coastlines; the natives are not greedy and do not promise great riches in the hinterland and vicinity, and it is more certain that such riches will be found according to location and disposition, even more so since [the land] is fertile and healthy and has very many comforts to live there and to make deals with the richest kingdoms in the world, where their advantages and rights will be such and so many in the first years, and with good governance and good understanding they will be even greater with the passing of time. If God and Y.M. help me, all this will become a reality. I note that most of the natives I have seen in faraway lands have had to look for clothing forced by need, and natives from dry, lean and poor territories use benefits and industry in the best way they can, so that they can support themselves with some ease, and are happy with very little, whereasthe natives from territories where conditions are benign do not get dressed, and since their land is fertile, they do not attempt to work it, but enjoy what nature gives them for free. It must be also noted that it is better to have less good land than too much bad one, that people who have been mistreated become extinguished quickly, and that the few well treated ones grow substantially in a short time. Such are large and good territories, and their peoples are many and good; the space takes up a quarter of the planet, and we do not know what we will find in it. This is as much as we can wish in this case, both in greatness and in riches.
The peoples from China are rated as wise for their form of government, industry and letters. I say that having heard about the roughness in treatment that has taken place in other territories, for fear that their land and assets be removed from [the inhabitants], or because they do not want new customs and laws, or for any other reason whatsoever, their knowledge hurts them so much that they do not trust any foreign nation. For this reason, the Spanish clergy has not found an alternative road to teach them the Gospels – that is their greatest loss – and to many in Asia, who live politically, appreciate wisdom, it is only a matter of exchanging their clothing and drugs for silver and reales, and they all stay there. Being so simple and docile, these other peoples will be easy to pacify, and for this reason they will be easy to indoctrinate, teach and please without giving them money. Nevertheless, among such ignorant people as those I refer to, there will not be a purposefully created trading post, but a founded settlement with everything referred to [above] and far more organisation if possible, so that the greater good spreads as fast as possible all over those territories and is not confined to the shores, nor should it be understood that we go there on a temporary basis, but with the strong wish to find efficient ways to hastily help those people leave behind the blindness they live in. Without the Holy Gospels’ divine light and at the entry of this sea of mercy, they will not drown but sail smoothly and prosperously until they resurface in such a life and death that the Church will pray for them.
Since their temporal lives will be secured in such a way that it will always be theirs and since they will be taught how to work at the right pace, let us not slack off, for it will be said that we are looking for someone to sell, or to exile, or to afflict and tire, just for us to repose. Since they will not die either of pain or mistreatment, nor of a sense of urgency caused by our greed, they will soon quit their barbarous lives and the dangers their souls run in order to enter polity. Sir, I wish that Y.M. would be honoured and glorified for everything that has been done in his royal name and that there would be someone exclaiming “long live all of us” in those territories, for we have all been created by God and there is something for all of us in moderation. These Indians have large extensions of very good land that they do not make use of, and together with what was said in the previous chapter, I would like to know if our people can use their vacant land without resorting to force or aggravation. If it can be granted as a fief or as conveniently as possible, or since there will be a committee made up of religious and non‐religious legal counsellors, it seemsthat this matter can be aimed at preserving their own good as well as God and Y.M.’s service and the security of other people’s conscience as well as mine, who persuades four, six or ten each year teaching them how to earn 100, 200 or more, as it has been stated.
It should be noted that only by themselvesthese Indians cannot achieve their greater good if Y.M. does not help them as their protector by sending preachers,ships, people, weapons and whatever else is convenient to secure this mission in enough numbers. To the best of my knowledge, either without these or without finding common ground, this mission cannot be secured; God can potentially do it and if that is the case, I say that this money has to be kept in a safe box with three locks and its contents should be divided by three: one share should go to those who require it; the second share should be for those settlers who prove themselves as the best administrators of land and Indians; the third share will always be available as extra funding for Church factories, convents, hospitals, worship and all common necessities, as it has been shown in these writings and in the one below. Please note that two of the shares can be allocated in different ways, a fact that must be clearly borne in mind, since one [share] will be used to give leeway to those who intend to deserve and gain honours and benefits and the other is earmarked for budget blowouts, which will surely exist after a while. Consider the City of Kings and México City, who are said to have over 150,000 inhabitants including natives, and the latter can be called foreigners. Of the 10,000 or 12,000 Spaniards, some are rich and some others are affluent or moderately affluent.
However, there are 130,000 who have no financial resources or guidance. Consequently, it is fair to ponder on whose account are the dangers that so many non‐landed and unhinged inhabitants run and whose behaviour has to be countered by the others. These inhabitants have to be either stopped or else they will collide against a hard wall, either today or tomorrow, ending up in a dissolute and debilitated life of misconduct that entails the loss of soul and desire to live, with nothing to gain but suffering or death as a consequence of their misbehaviour. Thus, their health will be damaged and further affliction will ensue as a consequence of the misrule that disfigures a Republic, which can be avoided if we seek the greater good through a new order. Each block that a city will be divided into will either have one or two owners, or four if convenient. Vacant land will be allocated to individuals so that they can start farming, with the obligation to sow, grow and breed whatever is more suitable and gives the best fruit in convenient quantities. The amount of available funds will be stated in the above mentioned safe box, and it will be paid either in a lump sum or in three instalments. Apart from what has been said, an encomendero (settler in charge of a group of natives) can profit from mining gold, silver and other metals, pearling, growing,sowing or by signing land and sea trade agreements, as long as they are honest dealings for the common good. Settlers would be allowed to market their produce. All this is considered without turning our people into the Indians’ masters, which will free them from forced personal service and from being beaten up in the way it is currently done.
The clergy will not have any disagreements with anyone on this, nor will they be disturbed or worried about what they should faithfully do. With the freedom they will enjoy, the Indians will be masters of their time and with their assets they will be able to study and learn whatever they are taught at ease and with pleasure. In short, Sir, none of us will have absolute authority over the Indians. It is not fair that the inherent good of so many peoples’ souls and bodies should be entrusted to just one man without a proven track record of his zeal, charity and transparency and that one such individual may destroy or help destroy the common good, while those who feel the pain cannot remedy it, even though they may try and persevere to use the means they deem more proper to that end, as can be seen now in the Indies. However, that trust should come from many that could be enchained and forced in such a way that even though they may not want it, they should defend the Indians at all levels. Sir, even when it may be so as not to lose their [i.e. The Spaniards’] current and future advantages, what I say can be regarded as true. In this way and others that God will give, those peoples will be able to acquire the three treasuresthat I propose: the knowledge of [God’s] Divine Majesty, political life and great riches. Our people will be able to live among them easily and comfortably (holding them at arms’ length through reason) and if they want to make use of population surpluses that will surely exist as in Europe (and they will), our people will persuade them with good pay and better treatment, doing without the evil ones that spoil and raze everything to the ground. Let us not forget what happened in the Indies and that those who were involved and their descendants are the ones who will bear the responsibility for the damages upon their shoulders, as heavy as they are, for they are responsible and must therefore pay later.
Sir, practical people cannot show what they will do unless they are given the occasion. Help me, Y.M., to carry out your good work, which is excessively large, and since it is in the honour and glory of God and so important for Y.M., it is good for Y.M. to start once and for all and very hastily, for arts last long and lives are brief, practice is difficult to acquire and even more so the disposition to learn. If good chances and time are wasted, damage will have no remedy. I want such an order to be issued because even though territorial possessions may grow immensely with time’s passing, in order to preserve them it would be necessary to have twice as many ministers of government, justice, war and finance, as it currently happens in Americas, and Y.M. should not pay them a salary. This should be heeded because – apart from the several million that will be saved – the greater good lies upon pursuing such high Christian objectives, guaranteeing the long life of those territoriesthat Y.M. is so far away from, and I expect that the people who go there keep Y.M. in mind, which is entirely possible. In that way, with this order that I can show in theory and practice, and opposition, no undeserving person will be appointed to royal or public office. Since justice will work secretly to investigate lives, it will rigorously punish crimes and will have debts paid; everybody will adjust themselvesto reason and if the state of affairs degenerates, they will be deprived of what they own and everybody will live cautiously. Sir, bearing in mind how Republicans are represented and considering that they will have all they need and that lack thereof makes it unworthy, a Republic will be set up.
In the same way as in many others we can find ignorant, dissolute and idle people, in this one there will be wise, virtuous and hard working people in excess who will protect as much as the former will attempt to damage. The false hopes of those who want to take advantage of other people’s work, negotiations and purchases will be eradicated this way. It must be warned that whoever leads during elections will allow others to manage government wisely and cautiously in those provinces they love, where they grew up and gained experience and which they must strive to preserve and not destroy. In order not to lose a second time, they will strive to refine themselves, in the understanding that the only worthy efforts are to work in order to learn and to live a deserving life. They will inspire themselves to do good that way. Some will not consider siding with those that lead them to success and the rest will clearly see that their studies, work and good characteristics will be of use to them. It is my sincere wish, Sir, to have my intentions believed in, and remind you that the current situation can barely be controlled – having experienced it in practice – let alone an absent, unseen, unexperienced world, and what has not been experienced or known cannot be ruled upon wisely, no matter how good intentions may be and whoever knows about right and wrong can trust God and Y.M., whom I ask not to allow the truthfulness of my zealous attempt to be challenged. In short, in to start a new world where there is a Christian and political government with the highest intentions that require more than the ordinary, whatever is in doubt must be set aside, for I trust God to vouch for me. There will be a universal reference to all natural and artificial entities with their names and differences, to all the most influential people and to all notable deeds, cases and causes that should be known so that students can study, learn and come to know them, and give them a fresh look. Thus, they will be able to choose the right course of action according to their nature. Such is the way to understand the difference between these truths and of studying such useful things as opposed to reading litigation procedures, damaging books or at least fiction.
To ensure that encomenderos will be of any use, two of them will be appointed yearly,so that they can become judges on their street or their district and hear the possible legal claims. In order not to turn to the registry mentioned below for mediation and to finalise outstanding situations similar to those below, to unburden the population from smaller matters; also to inquire into and find out how their neighbours live, what sort of enmities they have, the distress they are in, who is poor, sick, widowed, orphaned, and who is in a bad marriage or unmarried, together with everything else that needs to be known in order to give an account to the higher tribunal on the most important matters and to find a remedy for everything. In the Cabildo royal houses (local government house) in each city or village, there will be a large hall with a separate chamber with large and triple‐lock strong cupboards on one of its walls. Their keys will be kept by the two city mayors and a third person to be mentioned below. These cupboards will be used to keep all the existing registry books with alphanumeric indexes, and signed and sealed pages, for convenient and important good governance matters expected in such a Republic in order to maintain its peace and concord. A person of proven Christian faith and honesty will be appointed. Even if it is not the case, it does not matter, as it will be shown below.
Such person will become the legal – i.e. the man that will be in the highest position of confidence to be created there – for it is his truthfulness that will be entrusted with the lives, honours, properties and possessions of living people – both in the present and future – in that southern area. He will hold the third key and will have the obligation to attend the hall every morning for three hours after having opened and closed the cupboards to take the books out and put them back in their place, taking the keys [with him]. In that hall there will be assistants as well as senior and junior officials, one or two bailiffs, and the necessary [staff] to do their work. The legal will receive a good pay and the rest will receive enough so that they will not require anything else in keeping with their high office, and all of them will have the obligation of not stopping their work for an hour or for one day at the most, under severe penalties, the worst of them being the loss of their position. Nor will he curtail the rights of any person, whoever it may be, or receive a bribery – no matter how much. If he were found lying – to any extent – he will be given the death penalty.
This hall will be attended by the biannual Lord Mayors and by two aldermen if need be, to ensure that what is said above is enforced and to preside over whatever is laid down as faithful eye witnesses. They will be given entire credit and since the Lord Mayors will hear lawsuits, they will be there to hear them as well. There will be firm legislation so that no person or persons, regardless of their standing and condition, will be allowed to sell, buy, donate, lend, bail or enter any other agreement for a high or low amount of money, unless it is pronounced lawful and in the presence of the Lord Mayors, under the penalty that before a court they will not be allowed to request whatever was agreed with other parties, and that what was laid down is precisely valid and enforced with what is deemed to be in good faith. Entries in the registry books will be done by year, month and day, including names, why they were summoned, and both or all parties concur on a certain day, month and year. The legal will read aloud so that all parties and both Mayors can hear. Once the parties give their consent, they will sign it together with the Mayors and aldermen; the legal and all parties concerned will receive a copy of the entry and the in‐folio; they will only give a one‐real alms which will go into a sealed box for the souls in Purgatory, whom I am a devotee of because [I know] how hard it is to wait in pain.
Once the waiting period is over, whoever must pay will pay, and should he refuse, his assets (if any) will be seized. Otherwise, he will be jailed until he pays or makes amends with the other party. For this purpose, both parties (or as many parties as there may be) will seek the means for an agreement and everybody will mind their own business. I believe that more paper will be wasted in an ordinary lawsuit than in ten years of such agreements. This would be the way to avoid double‐dealings, usury, disregard, deceit, enmity, revenge, capital expenditure and timing, and the deceit of such a large number of people who are busy with litigation and who make a living out of it. The greatest pity is that in order to discover the truth between Christians, it is necessary to go through impossible confusions that produce paperwork here and hidden facts there, with a favourable ruling as outcome for those who do not deserve it, for today it looks more like craftinessthan justice itself. In short, all the damages that follow lawsuits will be avoided, as well as the many offences against God that take place as a consequence.
Please consider, Y.M., that if God Our King and Lord (who is in heaven) promised great rewardsto those who find a way to shorten lawsuits –which I have found – how could they not be used in those territories and even in these, except for those that are pending, and the only reward I ask for myself is that Y.M. agrees and puts [such system] into practice. Since litigation also occurs when inheritances are contested – and finding proof is difficult in those cases due to absences – there will be another indexed book in that hall, numbered,signed and sealed with the names of all men – unmarried and married, with their wives and children, and whatever else God givesthem – so that there is no deceit here, and when someone leaves this earth, it will be compulsory to register who or whose child they are – including their skin and hair colour, scars and moles – and their age. In that way the Registrar will keep a copy of the entry signed by both Mayors and the legal, with day, month and year, to attest the fact. If a person cannot be registered for any given cause, it will be done by whoever is in charge, and even if either one or the other did not do it, they will be liable for damages. It is not fair that due to their lack of care, as well as due to those mentioned in the previous chapter, the Republic will experience turmoil. There must be another record book for all virtuous and advantageous deeds that occur including the names of anyone who goes to live in those territories first.
Those who inflict pain upon all will be deleted from the book and exiled to Perú, as stated in the following chapter. All the good deeds of the past are not appreciated in the present, nor do those good deeds reach the whole world today – which needsthem badly. Nor do the present times need good deeds any less. Neithershould only those living in the present be satisfied with what the dead have done, nor are the dead the only ones whom we owe our success and reward to; neither should the present and future generations be under no obligation to work wonders for what they are worth, nor should those who did the great and good deeds lose rewardsfor a second time or more. In that way, nobility will not be founded in vanity but in pure virtue, nor will riches or favours or any other kind of passion choke virtue and nobility. This should be heeded – as well as anything else deserving of justice – as a whole and in a timely manner, with God’s grace, whose glory and honour it serves, and who must be loved, served and worshipped forever. The Cabildo is supposed to erect temples, sustain the clergy, lead and help the peoples and cater for their needs.
Those who pass away will have the obligation to instruct their executors to include the Cabildo itself in their last will and testament. Bequests and alms will be distributed fairly and assets will be entrusted to faithful and wealthy persons so that they can take care of them. Monies will be either deposited in a box or employed without risk, in such a way that minors can either increase or at least maintain their assets, and they can also be indoctrinated and taught in Seminaries, where they will be surely guided, and if the deceased have not made a will, the Cabildo will charge their wives, children and assets, and all the good considered convenient will be done for the deceased’ssoul. Once we do away with mourning laws, litigation, gambling (i.e. playing dice or cards) and very many more disconcerting things that I do not but can actually show, with the above mentioned vigilance, it is true that there will be less criminal cases, and for those that do occur there will be witnesses appearing before judges who will ask them with a questionnaire in their hands and see what is actually recorded. [Judges] will not accept any notorious lowlifes, Indians or black spokesmen, for all of them answer questions affirmatively in every situation. Such witnesses will be examined with goodwill, with detailed reporting, plenty of attention and due diligence, and with Christian skill, to discover the truth and always bearing in mind that what is written without help, on foot, on one’s knees and too fast, and is given to an ignoramus or to an illiterate person or to someone who does not know what they are saying, in order to sign it, is not worth less than several men’s honour, lives or possessions.
If the judge who passes sentence takes a writing at face value, he must realise the danger it has, and it is well known that neither negligence nor trust will be excused if an innocent person is condemned, and that even if they are punished for someone’s passing or unfair suffering, it will neither remedy nor satisfy such a damage, nor will it exempt them from paying in both lives. But over there, Sir, ordinary judges will only be allowed to prosecute and pass sentence, but not to execute it without the supreme court, where the process will be revised and justice will be given with clemency even though the parties may not lodge an appeal. If the judges executed such a sentence, damages must be paid as they should, either with loss of life or of possessions, or both. There is plenty to say on this topic as well as on torture, since very often it is used to find a culprit, to torment a hundred innocents who blame four, and these four will blame one hundred, and with even more harassment they will blame a whole kingdom. I refer to what I have written about this. Since parishes will not have only one priest in charge, nor will they be poor and badly served as we see in many places, there will be houses built with all comforts in whatever is left of a block where parish churches are built, so that the twelve prebend priests in them can stay free of charge paid by the parishioners’ tithes and a contribution from the bishops, whom they must recognise as their head.
In that way they will be together and the Church will enjoy greater authority. Since [priests] have become students first to deserve them, prebends will be granted by assessment of their merits. Each parish will have preachers, confessors, masses, choir and music, and they will accompany the Holy Sacrament,so it will go with more brevity and decency since our very same Lord is present both in the poorest parish and in the richest cathedral, and the souls of both groups of parishioners are worth the same and can have their Cabildo meeting on church government affairs and how to help their parishioners because work must be shared, and on such mattersthere will be agreements on whatever is more convenient. Each parish will have the obligation to shroud and bury [their parishioners], say four masses and to give exequies to all the poor who die. Thus it will be not be necessary to stand at the church door begging for alms to bury the poor. It should be forbidden to take money or any other elements used for any of the sacraments, whether it is done by rights, by habit or for alms. I advise that I can give examples about this. Each parish will have its own [funds] so that it can cover all its expenses, such as supplying wax and oil to light up the Holy Sacrament and images. In that way there will be no need [for priests] to walk the streets day and night, begging for alms for that purpose.
There is no shortage of opinions that using the methods I describe there will be no poor or people in need. I ask the opinionated whether they want to be poor or want hundreds to suffer so that they can shine when giving to the poor and I also say it seems that lack of piety has given charity a cold and that when there is a pitiful case, those that are not used to seeing them will feel sorry and give better help with whatever they can. I promise those who fear that they will be unable to give to charity in order to give them an opportunity to prove themselvesfully, that if their works do not fulfil my wishes, no matter how passionate they are, it seemsthat the rest is boundless and very many dire needs have no remedy. Many offences against God are born of such needs, as well as losses of honour, lives and even souls – not to forget grave dangers against them. There will be order because none of the independent priests will live in extreme poverty, for this is not for everyone and it would make some exemplary ones change their minds if only they had bread on the table. Among Christians it is shameful that there should be such ministers of God walking cap‐in‐hand, following women and begging on the streets, and it is even more shameful that there should be many who do not take it away from them or pay any attention to this, or to see them walking around badly dressed and badly treated and for all other reasons lacking [basic] comforts. Exemplary priests will give effective sermons and the laity’s good deeds will be the hallmark of religious teachings. The laity is to honour and revere priests so that the Indians will do the same; it will be up to them to serve their own well with one hand and send them to beg every day for sustenance, as well as for anything else they cannot do without. When priests walk or sail with permission, they will be given whatever they need in sufficient quantities. Apart from either ship captains or the towns they visit, all priests’ expenditures will be covered with Cabildo cheques. In that way, they will not look for what they need in any other way, nor will they have to depend on persons that lose their respect or look down on them in the same way I have seen before.
The clergy will not need to please any specific men or wait until they die, so that they bequeath them property after years of such aspirations, and even less so seek others who could build everything or part of it, and others who will give them whatever they need or bequeath assets so that they can support themselves. The clergy will thus not have to visit courts to learn their rights, nor will they have to divert themselvesto cater for their needs and to seek footwear and clothing. In short, God must not be the poorest among us in a manner of speaking, nor should His holy houses pay hundreds to men (as I have seen in some places). I finally say that if these priests devote themselvesto God, they should have all their time to themselvesso that they can do it with ease, and at the same time they can teach the natives and others in seminaries they will hold in their convents separately, and will be able to preach, administer confession and the Eucharist, as well as the rest of their obligations. We beg, do, spend, suffer and persevere for what we say. Our attempts are known and for this reason mine should be believed in. I have had to represent them so many times. In Rome Cardinal Pedro Aldrobandino asked me what it was that I wanted. I replied “To discover a new world that is new in everything”. Monsignor Peña, Auditor of the Roman Rota, asked me what language I spoke to make myself understood among those peoples. I told him I knew the general one: to do good, not wrong, by them. In order to understand our people, whose language is the strangest and most remote of all, I say, than to demean good, consistent deeds and that I will resort to other methods that life has taught me, and if what I make myself do is too much, God can do even more in many ways. I have so many reasons to complain to Y.M. as I do because I find myself in need here in Madrid, wasting the life I want to spend settling the lands that I discovered; [I want] to discover the remaining ones and to bring them to reason as much as possible. I have so much to say about each and every thing that this cause entails – as well as about my wishes – that I do not know how to express it in its totality or in part, except by screaming that my spirits cannot suffer any more for those innumerable men and women who have been lost. Those territories are lost and I want to exclaim “Y.M., take them because God is giving them to you through my hard work and persistence, before others seize and damage them together with their surrounds”.
In order to defend them, it is impossible not to create the navies [I] referred to, nor can I give up looking for ways that can force this truth to become known in the same way as others that I have said so many times. In short, I shout so that I will be allowed to go ahead. Sir, I do not see any reason whatsoever that can force Y.M. to lose what has been mentioned before, which will last as long as the world and then will spring eternal. Y.M., justify this cause by what you owe to God and honour such a great Lord in the same way by doing such a great service, so that the Catholic Church will triumph gloriously this time, as combated as it is by all its deadly enemies. Y.M., defend those great territories and its peoples together with the rest because they are in danger; God will help and pay one‐thousand to one in this life and the next. Believe me, Y.M., that if I could, I would have conquered them all long ago to given them to Y.M., and that my spirits can do more, more and more. Y.M., I want you to appreciate the favour that God has bestowed upon you, the services I have rendered, how ready I am to serve you again and how much I wish to serve you faithfully all my life for nothing. Some say that Flanders cost Y.M. 244,000,000 in gold and 300,000 men. I say that if there is a revolution, many more million and men will be spent and that part cannot recompense what was spent, let alone what will be spent. Y.M., you must spend – the only means in those territoriesthat may bring returnsto Spain and help her against her enemies, but even more so in the conversion of those innumerable Gentiles that do not know how to contradict the truths of our Catholic faith.
Trust me, Y.M., since I trust God, who took me and brought me back twice and who will help me in such a way that the third time I will be lucky. I gave Y.M.’s confessor, Fr. Luys de Aliaga, part of these Chapters and I added the following one. When I entered this Court I was asked about the rights we have to claim those territories. I replied our right is exactly the same we have to take possession of all the others and that it seems likely that Y.M. bears it in mind because he sent me to discover them according to briefs given to me by Roman Pontiff Clement VIII and Christ Our Redeemer tells us to preach his Holy Gospel to every human creature, which is what I ask for. His Holiness is Y.M.’s conscience judge and for this reason he is the judge that will pass a perdition or salvation sentence to all those millions of Gentiles who were born and are yet to be born, in whose name I beg His Holiness not to let them suffer the consequences of delaying what is so immediately important to him, even more so when I pursue this cause to my cost in God’s honour and may lose mine; His Holiness comes to the remedy and hastily gains glory in this and in the next life granted to those who are faithful to their God, to souls, to their King and their homeland. In short, [as if I were] the judge who is in favour of the petitioner, in the same way I plead for justice for this cause in whose favour Our Lord has humiliated the most damaged wills, and for this reason and the rest I should not fear for its ruin, even less so being aware (as I certainly am) of His Holiness’ Christian zeal for the cause and the favours I receive, that I have to serve all my life. It will only cost to send the following goods Pedro and others to whom the 10,000 peso payment is not owed since they are Indians who are said to be free from work, a master or a property, will receive such payment exactly in the same way in all the Indies. The required copy should be applied to these and others that I will mention, so that in Salamanca – or wherever it is more convenient – a Seminary will be founded with the income required for sustenance from the Indians. Then, four young men should be brought in to be taught all the good disciplines from each province and borders, and from all the warrior groups.
They will come to study not only because of the distance and long absence from their homeland and its customs, but also because of their young age and continuity. Once the subjects are known, those with more potential will study until they become Theologians; the most satisfactory ones will become Priests, and after having received convenient training, will be sent to teach their parents and all the natives in their own language, and the results in all those Indies are clearly understood, both in divine and human policing. Y.M. should not believe in everything said against this people and should not trust common procedures that were followed in their teaching and conversion at the beginning, given the state in which we see them and what we know about the past bears witness of. Sir, the twelve holy and zealous Apostles are currently not among us and what was needed in their heyday is still necessary nowadays in different areas of the world. Maintaining the order they kept so that they are visible is still necessary as well, as we can see in the fruits of what they did: God is as powerful now as he was then. I believe that exactly in the same way they were forced to work for others, they had been forced to sow, breed and work mines for themselves instead, and teaching them arts and crafts, and how to work as merchants on land and sea. If they had become rich, they would have been sought wherever they were by peoples who would have built not just one but several well designed and appointed Seminaries where good teaching and doctrine would have worked so well that the Indians from those Indies would fly into the sky – in the same way as others from this Europe – and I truly say it would not be too bad for those who have not been taught how to fly not to fly.
I refer to a speech I have written about the Indians. After they have arrived, young men of all languages should be sought among the very many black people brought from Guinea to Spain, so that once sent to convents, schools and seminaries, or in the above mentioned Indian seminary, they can teach them with the same love that their white counterparts and the rest are taught until they become Theologians and ordained [priests]. Given that training (as it was said about the Indians) they will be sent on board the Guinea contract ships to preach to their parents and fellow natives, whom I understand will receive them well and believe in them even more, and will quickly be of use to all men and women who need them. I can say this because of the good opinion that I have about those dark skinned peoples from my long trips. An example would be that of Fr. Juan’s stateliness among the Ethiopians, whom are said to have stayed in the Faith since the days that St. Matthew preached to them, and those in Congo where they firmly follow the Holy Roman Church because it was preached to them, as well as to many other coloured ones who are great gentlemen, neither lesser in virtue nor bad with weapons.
The same must and can be expected from all of them if the same care is taken, for in order to finish the work with haste, no matter how big, love is very powerful when the means are available, as they are here. I refer to a speech I have written about the dark peoples. The Constable has mentioned the shortage of navigators that Spain currently experiences. For this reason I will explain to Y.M. to what extent the following is necessary for the purpose of navigation. To artfully become aware of the needle variation and remedy every day, which requires absolute fidelity since it is what guides a ship and it can lead it astray if it is ignored or kept in a fixed position. To become aware of the latitude, which is self‐evident, and the longitude, which allows the navigator to ascertain where his ship is, but without it he would not be able to, because there would be only an approximate estimate full of contradictions. Navigation chart point. A navigator calls the spot where his ship appearsto be in order to ascertain the distance between his departure point, where he is and what remains to be sailed, and the remaining estimated distance.
Based on the latitude, that point is known using the quadrant astrolabe and the star height measurement instrument with its rulers. Once this point is measured, he must mark it on his chart and name it using the height and direction used, or set square. In order to determine [the point] according to the longitude, there are no poles on the East or West, nor are there any instrumentsthat indicate it while navigating. Rough estimation can replace their nonexistence and such procedure may be called “the navigators’ confusion” due to the long distances and proximity to dangers and damages that may occur very often when the ship hits sandbanks or land, and when [navigators] believe they are close, but are in fact many leagues away. A nautical day is a complete one‐day journey sailed by a vessel. Navigators give their best shot at estimating the rough distance in leaguesthat they have covered, in whole or in part, which is ruled by the direction they have followed and call “fantasy”. Against the two, except for the height, the following inconveniences may ensue. Thus according to the longitude, the point is deemed impossible. For this reason, I can say that only half the navigation is known. Winds have unequal strength because they sometimes are very strong and some other times not so; duration can vary because they can blow for an hour, two or three, or a day, two or even more.
Sometimes they may be tailwinds when they blow from the stern; they may be crosswinds or bowline [winds], or sometimes blow from the opposite direction which may make the ship spin. There are periods of dead calm as well. Ships may carry all their sails, which may be assisted by bonnets, or lateen and topgallant sails. When these are all up, navigation is said to be in full sail, but sails can be up half a third or higher on the masts, or lower. They may be on high or low antennas, or on higher or lower masts, loosely or close‐woven; they may be dry or drenched by rain or dew. They may have long sheets, tallied or drawn sails, or [may be] running without sailing. Undersea rivers may bring spring tides at short intervals that produce knocks, and slower streams, which are continuous waves, and wind hits may produce rudder yaws to both sides with their fury; ships may then go adrift or winds may be blowing. How light or heavy ships may be for sailing; if they are heavier at stem, stern, starboard or larboard; if they take the load or not, or if they are half loaded; if they are in deep waters, have a lighter load or are buoyant; how much this matters or damages the ships; how much they lighten every day. If ships are clean, or have mud or conch; if keels or sides are dirty; if they support the sails or not; if they run through, sling or rise well; if they keep step or not; if masts and riggings are in or out of step; if tacks are open or in place; if [ships] are flat or let water in and if they do, how much is it; if they experience delays to speed up. The damage or advantage produced by people’s quietness or unquietness; going leeward or windward; if ships are delayed or speedy when called, as well as other wiles and if they are favourable or not.
Navigators’ impression – unless it is on the Equinoctial Zone where they sail in a smaller circle – or modifications when they amend the uncertainty of recorded locations, which are represented on flat charts that are so different from the roundness where ships do in fact sail, as well as their awareness of these and other false impressions produced by badly manufactured or broken instruments, by quantities, hours, days, weeks or longer periods, or ratios; each thing that navigatorssail past and how it waxes or wanes. All of these may produce considerable damage, which may work in the navigators’ favour and be judged should there be any damages or otherwise. Given all this I do not know what kind of trial would be sufficient to do justice to what was said in order to have any navigator disclose his ship’s exact location. With this it has been adequately proved that when navigation meetings take place or when participating navigators are asked their opinions, it is impossible to agree, in the same way a lone navigator may not attempt an imaginary point on any given route correctly, whether it is North, South, East or West or any other course, even if it is done respectfully. Sailing the globe or being knowledgable on how to reduce such a shape to a flat surface, considering that a ship sails a shorter distance than what appears on the chart due to the fact that meridians are parallel and they make parallels as long as the Equinoctial, [so] navigators believe in what they see and many do not understand how far they are from the truth. Measuring the Sun at any time and moment of the day when it is hidden under cloud coverage. Leaving this aside, there are many other reasons that make it imperative to measure [the sun] height from the poles to determine different facts. Becoming aware of the hour and minutes, [which will allow to apply] necessary mathematical rules for navigation whenever necessary. Learning [the position of] stars so that they can be used at nighttime to measure heights with reference to them because impediments and shortages are not measured through the navigators’ needs. Putting another cross‐staff in place of the one being used, since it may have unknown manufacturing flaws.
Learning whether a bright looking Sun or star are what they seem because navigational movements do not allow navigatorsto ascertain this, thus rendering their observation more or less inaccurate. Becoming aware of stream or current directions because if they are not, navigators cannot take a decision with certainty and this leads them astray very often, but if they are, they can continue sailing or wait for a better occasion. Learning how tides work in order to sail into sandbanks or channels, so as not to become stranded in ports where the ship can run aground if there is a low tide, and also to become aware when they can continue safely. Being able to measure distances from the ship at first sight, so that when [navigators] spot two ports, they can head for the nearest one, and by using the needle they can learn how coasts, capes, points and islands run without reaching them, bearing in mind that there may be sandbanks and powerful crisscrossing winds, and it may become dark. [In that way, navigators do not waste] their time and route in order to describe them in new discoveries and [can] amend them in old ones, and learn which ships are closer and further away in order to operate their own artillery without becoming a target for others’. On short courses or at nighttime, or when it is dark, when estimation is necessary, even more so when winds change briefly or when ships are close to firm land or between islands and bars, a needle movement on the logbook cover with twelve holes and numbers in each direction, in order to note how many watch‐glasses were sailed through them and in that way [navigators] will become as aware as possible about the actual positioning of their ship in order to continue sailing or to take shelter.
An accurate map of the courses, winds, timings, depths and landings, in three and four directions, with copious notes and warnings. Pumping water out as a different way to remove water using an alternative method because one or two sailors can replace fifteen and the rest, and many times when it is impossible to bail out or replace [the sailors], ships sink to the bottom. Separating fresh from saltwater because failure to do so can make many people suffer and die in misery, which is a constant threat. Caulking ships, because it prevents water leakage and damage, and it prevents oakum and planks from rotting, deteriorating, shipworm and the effects of bombing, with the added benefit that the ship will have a longer lifespan. If it were possible, making an attempt to sail the ship without wind, which would be very important in the event of dead calm so as not to run aground, and to tie a rope, save men and women’s lives, enter ports or channels, to get windward from obstacles, to flee faster and reach less, to aid mates, to avoid currents, to save time and circumstances, and if it were necessary it would help to sail with all sails set.
I mention this because many things that were deemed impossible were achieved and this could be one of them. Understanding how to make, examine and use all forced sailing instruments securely when sailing with all their rules, for two reasons. First, because many times it is necessary to use them. Second, because in case of errors, they will give wrong readings, and it is a must to command [a ship] without them, as well as to build vessels and any other objects that have always been used in navigation. In short, Navigators should find solutions and do without, Boatswains should distribute and store and Captains should govern and defend. When navigators set sail together, their instruments should be examined so thoroughly that all of them may be said to work as one because if they do not work in the same way, it is impossible to navigate without determining where errors come from and how many of them occur, and what remains [to be done] is to exactly decide when [a navigator] gets lost at sea, which is impossible if the above mentioned conditions are considered. The navigational charts used nowadays have been based only on the information given by other navigators;some have been wiser than others; the wise ones cannot see everything and many details are overlooked at night; their observations were made with instruments that were not fully accurate, with inconsistent sun declinations.
Those who issue a notice do not do so in doubt and descriptions through comparisons cannot be certain if navigators give exact locations according to longitude, latitude and shape, and they may estimate two or more leagues of width only by taking ten or twenty steps. This may also happen with points and capes and the East or West coast may be considered too many leagues longer. I can prove these two uncertainties, therefore if four navigators – even on land – observe the Sun or star height with the same instrument, they will find differences and will agree very few times; when they try again, they will find new differences and they will find errors in height and course measurements using all the charts that they are accustomed to. In short I say, Sir, that if all charts are false, and they will be so long as Y.M. does not send a person with scientific knowledge and expertise with accurate instruments in order to observe and describe all the navigated seas whom all navigators will follow. I say that without this it will be impossible to find what is exactly sought and it makes the current and future confusions more likely. With all this, navigators, who are always talked about, can call themselves wise men in their art, well proven in all the seas that they have crossed so often, using their dexterity to compensate for so many faults and excesses, so many inconveniences and annoyances, and totally impossible feats that astonish those who understand them, even more so because their art is not affected by ignorance or carelessness and their feats are miraculous in spite of their limited means. The very many and common advantages that we enjoy as by‐products of the art of navigation are very evident – more in the present than in the past – and our Spain bears witness of this truth, for the Western and Eastern Indies and their annexes have continuously received so many navies and large fleets, as well as many other vessels of different capacities, and their treasures seem so incredible because of their high price: gold, silver, precious stones, pearls, drugs, balms, fragrances and large amounts of clothing, as well as many other unusual and curious objects, all of them very necessary for people’s livelihood.
Therefore [the Indies] are full of so many goods as they have and they have become so well known and feared, envied and sought because there are ships going there that commonly and frequently carry loads full of their products to other foreign provinces, and they in turn bring and leave their own products to barter. Our European Spain is sucked dry being the richest, the most prosperous and the most bountiful province in the world as it is today, and it will continue that way so long as it lasts through God’s power. It is for this reason that I can say that there is hardly a known city or small corner, or dwelling – no matter how lonely and hidden it may be in the depths of the Earth, that has not received any benefitsfrom the art of navigation, which also helps to defend the homeland, seeks the enemy in their own home and keeps their greedy attempts at bay. It is [navigation] that has found large and hidden provinces far away, as well as tiny islands in the most remote and confusing gulfs, and has taken, still takes and will take the preachers of God’s word that have manifested themselvesin them and will continue to manifest themselvesin the remaining ones. [Navigation] has transported so many people from very remote kingdoms, at four, six and ten thousand leagues, who (after God) only trust the art of navigation that allows them to see the new works and wonders of the Lord, so that He will be known and well served by His creatures.
All of this greatness and riches, known in every corner of the world, are the by‐product of many navigators’ achievements whose importance is not known and nor are their watchfulness and paid work, for in order to be one only their wish suffices, together with their spirit on a slim vessel laden with other lives and their own in increasing isolation and removed in the distance. They enter a struggle where death is always nearby, with two powerful and courageous opponents such as the wind and the sea when they are enraged, not to mention ordinary hunger and thirst, and among enemies the most present of are human beings themselves. I leave aside the absence from their homeland, their fears and astonishments, their infinite inconveniences, their problems as a whole, adding the low esteem of people who can be considered courageous and their lack of a reward, which is what enables and spoils it all. Some are generally happy with the little they know; some others have nobody to teach them;some others give up pursuing this art and many flee from it to seek a way in which they can make a living with more certainty and security.
This, Sir, is the reason why our Spain does not have many unique navigators. If Y.M. holds their science in the high esteem it deserves – for it is one of the three columns of this Monarchy: letters, arms and navigation – Y.M. will have many more navigators who choose not to become one even when they have what it takes, who would serve Y.M. as befits him so that he can become Lord of the Seas because it is important. As far as I am concerned, so long as I have my strength, I refer to a set of instructions and a navigation treatise that I have written with my eyes set on my duty, and such are the navigators I want in those territories who can be found easily using the methods I discovered. A certain person of cold will towards my cause and myself wanted to topple and demolish me and since Columbus’s struggles were immense and more acknowledged than mine, I have commissioned the following memorial to find out if [Y.M.] would be inclined to consider me and my cause with pious eyes and I did not succeed, exactly in the same way as he did not succeed in destroying me or my faith in God and in Y.M. with the very many disfavours he did me.
The persistence of a courageous gentleman such as Christopher Columbus, whose memory should be honoured by erecting a gold statue, for it was on his bones that the Council of the Indies was set up, which in turn created a Patriarch, many Archbishops and Bishops, many church dignitaries and secular persons, Viceroys, Audiences, provincial governors and their necessary ministers, for such great kingdoms and so many peoples that fit in them, with financial returns such as those of Mt. Potosí (as it is said) worth over a thousand million, it must be noted that all these past, present and future riches and greatness, together with others that are there, have come without being seen in such great numbers, were bought by the great Columbus from Madeira Island, where he heard the news from Portuguese navigator Ruy Falero, who was shown those hidden territories by the power of the wind, over a period of eight years and months along 3,000 leagues, when he noticed the first territories he saw (in the same way as I have now) and it will be fair to understand (and also compelling to say) that I went from Perú to the unknown hemisphere, and from the unknown hemisphere to the Philippines, and from the Philippines to the City of Kings to make a proposal on my attempt, and from the City of Kings to Rome, and from Rome I came straight to this Court, and from the Court to the unknown hemisphere, and from there to New Spain, and I went acrossfrom sea to sea, and from there I came here where I am, and can say that I will not leave my cause aside for a day and that my persistence has clocked up sixteen years; I have covered 20,000 leagues and in the Indies I have left many things that are not easy to navigate because they are so difficult to acquire.
I request that contradictory detours be judged, as well as the threats, lawsuits, travails, misery, nakedness, justifications, pleading and assisting my King without wavering, together with the rest that I refer to, both the histories and all my petitions, and to a sign that will later be seen, with the importance of some cases, and I say to those who proclaim their most obscure aspirations, times of poverty and of war, that for the same reason I have had more to contend with considering that my demand is clear, that times are peaceful, that Perú is rich and that monies can be counted by the millions, and surplus population can be counted by the thousands, which is everything I need to succeed in my attempt. In order to start his own attempt, Columbus was dispatched from Moguer and his cries from there could almost be heard by the Monarchs, and on the way back he disembarked in Spain after having knocked on all doors, and he was received with love here and dispatched with a large float, many people and all the necessary supplies. Their great estimation is source of immense pride, the greatest reward and lancet of wills. I must confess that when I went and came back via the Northern and Southern seas, I went past seven governments, which is the same as seven kingdoms away from this one, and that I was so badly received here that I can truly say that I have proven my love, for nobody has died so far of such great love.
To Columbus I confess those magnificent and rich Provinces of America, with a reminder that everything that is left of them, which is surrounded and crossed in different parts, must be behind some mountains and valleys, and it seems as though all the gold and silver paid to Spain had never been there. If not, let Spain say how many millions in gold it has in excess and let the Indies say how many of their natives are missing, and I say that those who are about to be pacified or retired have been scalded as a consequence of the mistreatment that they and their neighbours received, and for this reason they do not want to believe us or submit themselves; they would rather die fighting in the same way as those in Chile and other regions do, as Chichimecos have, and [to deal with] some of them it is necessary to send as many of us. This should be duly considered, and if we reduce America to only the good territories or to a reasonably comfortable lifestyle, it will be seen that many of its areas are unpleasant due to excessive heat and humidity, and in some cases [the weather] is extremely cold due to snowfalls and wastelands; there are very large deserts, long sandy spots, many confined mountains, flood plains, marshes, rocky ground, hills and areas where since it rains too much or too little, added to the rest, there is too much worthless and sick land full of mosquitoes and alligators, poisonous herbs and animals, and leaving aside a small number of provinces, I say that if there are four or ten contiguous leagues of good land, in some areas there are between 100 and 500 almost completely underused or wasted [leagues] where many Indians have lived and now live and where there is no space for a Spaniard with four heads of cattle and a plough.
If we leave aside all the above mentioned decreases, there is very little good land left in contrast with America’slarge extension, where the natives are savage and cruel in excess, go completely naked, eat human flesh, snakes, lizards, fleas, use sorcery, and drink in excess, which is the root of enormous evils. Regarding Christianity, that is for priests to comment on because they have taught them. Generally I understand that these shortcomings started way back when [the natives] were disciples of Satan and for this reason it was our obligation to show more care and compassion than we did, an obligation we still have. In short, I say, Sir, that the remaining peoples, even all of them, have shown little faith, and their present condition does not do justice to God, to them and to Y.M. I understand that if they were asked, they would name that the cause, or more precisely the reason they do not mine gold and silver, clothe themselves, become greater or build housing, which many of them do not own.
In other words, what is the purpose of so much work if everything will be seized from their hands. The peoples I discovered are mostly ready and willing, of good size and features; among the whites many of them are very beautiful; they are energetic and courageous, which is just as well to understand that they will become good and pious men. I found most of those that I spoke to and brought were friendly, accepting, pleasant, and above all else truthful, bashful and respectful, which brings in hope that they will gladly receive and perpetuate the Faith if we do our duty. Together with me there were Spaniards and people of other nationalities that have seen the newly discovered parts of the world and all of them said in unison that these peoples are better than those from America, and the lands are the best they have seen. I say so as well on both peoples and territories and if these were not the way they are, large, populated, fertile, healthy, rich and with many comforts to live in them as I have described them, no matter how much I speak for them or persist, I would not be able to persuade the most convenient people to settle there. The following features should be noted.
First, the goodness and the riches of the territoriesI discovered. Second, they have not had a government yet and it is my wish that it becomes established. Third, many natives are alive and they can all be initiated in the one and only Faith, because of their predisposition and our awareness, as well as the recommended means and the zeal displayed by God’s ministers. Fourth, the land and sea have not been exploited yet and I cannot see any other riches that can redeem and replenish Spain but these. Fifth, thank God I am alive, knowledgeable and realistic, and have the same instincts that I have always had to serve this mission that God gave us, at a time in which all these gifts are priceless, even more so after having lived for so many years in spite of being mistreated so much. There are many people who will pass blind judgement and say that the discovery I made is of little importance and that I am worth even less, but I say what a terrible blow of ignorance, or of envy, or from the devil, who is skilled in dealing [calamities] like this. To do strict justice I say, Sir, may we add to my leagues and years another two [men] so that there will be three distinguished navigators – Columbus, [da] Gama and Magellan – if we consider their first trips, and if we add Cortés and Pizarro to the final count of leagues and time, it is more than enough, and if it were necessary to add more to the five, I can easily do it, and if I had received more help, I believe I would have achieved greater feats. With God’s help I aspire to conquer only the hearts. Thus it seems, Sir, that God saved places to be discovered later, the best territories, and even though it was through His help that this truth was unveiled so slowly and He showed it by miracle, I request that whatever I have said in this and other writings be reduced to weight or to numbers and subtract from what Columbus found in the islands he brought news about. I conclude by saying that Columbus made his findings helped by a Queen, a Cardinal, a priest, a Royal Secretary and two brothers whom he shared his workload with, and that his suffering and persistence, his prison and shackles, and the enormous value of what he did and what he wanted for himself with his reward and his end, has all been seen.
What I aspire to, not for myself but for others, is not believed, even less so what I will achieve if I am accepted and stay alive, or what else I will suffer or the ending I will meet. I leave the reward aside because I only expect it from God and I say that it has only escaped the two of us who have pleaded and persevered without judging each other. I would only consider the integrity and the good will of the great Columbus, and how far he reached with his three caravels, and if it were not for my great tenacity or where I went and arrived with three little vessels, and with this I think it has been amply proved that Columbus will be front runner, but I only honour and glorify God who owns everything and I have nothing. I thank His Divine Majesty infinitely, for exactly in the same way he showed us such a magnificent part of the world through Columbus, it was also his great goodness that showed me the way (even though I am unworthy) and speaking fairly [He was] no less great and useful to Y.M.’s good fortune. I only need to know if any of the very many interested parties have prayed a Hail Mary for Columbus’ soul.
If his soldiers and sailors wanted to throw Columbus overboard when he was on his journey, I will remain silent honouring my two mothers, Rome and Spain, on what happened on the journey, both by land and sea, and the causes and who and how many are those that I saw and that I know of, how far the finesse of their actions and wishes has gone and promised, how they feel very little fear, how they complain without cause, and that contradicted what they said in Lima on departure: that the only reward they wanted was to die during that journey, thus achieving the Jubilee that was conceded. However, I suspect (and believe that I am not deluding myself) that they did not want to gain souls but to find heaps of gold, silver and pearls on the beaches, without realising that these and other riches are to be found in the bowels of the Earth and sea, that Seville was not built in a day, let alone México and Lima or the mills that mines have in their provinces, or that those Indians were not going to learn our language in two days or guess the attempts, or how much is read in Paris, nor would they receive what God gave them in three days including freedom, nor would it be possible in four days to appear in Spain with all the wealth they had dreamt of. All this would require space and rolling up their sleeves, for the sane were not awarded their gains with any less than what is needed to start Kingdoms. They wanted to be the great lords of all the discoveries, or second in government and first in all the maritime and military outposts, without considering that each deserving man can be given only one and they are not for those who ignore them and take them for granted.
They expected to find a large provision every fifty leagues, with set tables, and after sitting at them they would promise themselvesto rule the world, which is only a necessary servant for all of us, and if it cost one day of hard work without water – I leave dangers aside – it is astonishing to see the lack of spirits and the very little love for the mission. [They do not want] either heaven, or honour, or advantage, or fame; they only want many othersto work for them while they have a holiday because of their eagernessto avoid bitter efforts for others (even for their children) in months and years. Lives are very short and come to an end – no matter how artfully – and those who understand this still suffer when they could do the exact opposite so as not to allow the most immense rigours to stop them, but for this and other reasons I cannot but say that those who are unable to take much suffering do not know much at all and that those who are knowledgeable are aware that they must do their duty.
Those who succumb to passions do not know much either, even less so if they become excited for no reason at all and are intent on revenge with or without cause, not to mention those who did not make themselves useful for a single day in the whole journey, and there were those who were not useful for a single hour. It was embarrassing to see those who had the barest minimum sense of duty, the most malcontent, who could not be trusted for a moment but through their trickery they stole a march on others and were still paid for the day. I paid them; these are truths and there is more that I keep my counsel on. They have said that they rendered greatservices to God and to Y.M. and that they have honoured and favoured me, who had to suffer for their actions when that could have been avoided, and benefitted them as much as I could, treating them like brothers. I leave aside all the ingratitude that I experienced there, for I do not know what sort of wrong the ungrateful may do and I ask them to point out the disorder I created, or the advice they gave me, or what sort of aggravations or violence I exerted upon them, or how much due diligence and finenessthey were so zealous about, or what evidence they can show against me in this and other cases, so that they can be believed against me, whose intentions are well proved, nor would I believe that such men existed if there was not so much proof, but it could well be that it was convenient to send them on that trip.
For this reason it is recommended to carefully consider who can be taken there. Even though many of them are deceitful – they are those that Satan takes on similar journeys with him to reap what he sows – I advise that I took certain men only to do the right thing, whom I found and felt for their honour and lives, and did what others would not have done, and it was said that all of them were at risk. I argue that if mercy for the account and reasons I had deserves enormous punishment, I am here, ready to receive it, and to remember how good it has been and will be to build upon mercy. All this will be easy to understand in order to judge a man that does his best to make everybody under his authority happy, even though he may feel devastated and struggle to achieve it with great effort. I also say that if those in government would allow those who want to live an unbridled life to do so, what would become of those who have always been good, and if the former are stopped in their tracks, I will become the villain. If Diogenes did not find a wise, prudent, courageous, stoic and persevering man, it is not surprising that I have not found the very many that I looked for carefully, especially an honest thinker, nor is it a mean feat that some of those who participated in the journey would guide (as they did) all my new aspirations to conclude this mission in such a way that the lesser of my losses would be that of the judgement I do not have.
If that were the case for other missions, apart from this one, I would have already lost it; I do not mean only my sound judgement, but had I been hurt as well, I would have been dead for a long time already, and it is dead that I look good in the eyes of those who know that whoever does not feel cannot love, and whoever loves great and honourable deeds and sees their ruin has a strong obligation to feel all this proportionately and a man who is capable of loving will suffer, dissimulate and repair even more and as many times as it was offered here and there with such zealous care every time; let us hope that all the greatness that he works on does not come to an end, or at least does not become entangled and delayed. This, Sir, is in my name and others’: I say that I do not know of any way to force wills, even more so considering that the most certain fact about the human condition is that it is changeable. It must be believed that since I did not want to give up on my persistence, I suffered companies that only soul and body could keep. It is also fair to understand that there are people who came from the journey who regret not having had more travails so that they could prove their courage, as well as how they could become hardened and admired and again they are being challenged and despised while they love danger and death in the service of their God, their King, their homeland and for the benefit of the peoples from those countries, whom this mission is dedicated to, so that they could truly say that they were born for a purpose, not only to appear exhausted after such a joyous and happy trip as the one they are coming from.
Everything that has been repeated here is for the purpose of defending my cause and my part, for I find myself forced to do the impossible and to say that I am alone and highly contradicted by people who should help me, and ask what is it that I should have discovered so that a small sum of money is spent at once, hoping that for each real spent there would be a one‐thousand soul profit, and God will give these two thousand men and women as reward, or is it that by doing more than what was done at once so that my actions seem reasonable to those that bite them, for I have done as much as I say I have and have served without pay, and so far without profit, and it will not be found that I never flaunted it but that I have made the most concerted effort I was capable of, and that I give as much as God has given me to free all the territories and peoples I discovered from oblivion and from present and future danger, as well as those about to be discovered, as shown in my writings, my petitions, my assistance, my persistence and my patience (even though this is not to anybody’s liking), when there should have been an ending to those occasions that resent me and make me complain, for I can see that I am more likely to be killed than dispatched. I ask those who belittle my work to show their great actions, and to those that say I am in the wrong, to teach me how to do the right thing, since this is what I pursue.
To those who doubt my attempt: if you want to show your zeal, come with me, all of you, that I offer myself to point millions of lost people from centuries ago to you, who are expecting God’s mercy for all of them. That is what really mattersto them, not the words I hear, and if what I said is not of your liking, graciously accept from me all the profits you say I made, at the cost the job was done, adding six months of sickness without medical attention on top of the journey’s eleven months, sometimes up and about and sometimes bedridden, in the wrong care, deprived of the basics and in excessive pain. Added together, I experienced twenty‐ two life risks, leaving aside the usual ones, as well as those experienced by my friends. Otherwise take what is left over at its minimum price, for after confession I offer it myself. In order to err, all it takes is someone’s wish, and to believe what I believe, that having fought for this cause so well, I despair immensely, study deeply and want to learn, but do not know three quarters of it. Sir, so many necessary things may come together (as they do) and I may lack so many of them (as I do) that all my best efforts on a continuous basis will not be enough to lay a small rock for this marvellous building, and there could be so many arguments and counter‐argumentsthat will not allow me to move forward, as it has been happening for a while, or mow me down to the ground and render me unable to stand up again, unless this, together with the rest, is what will hurt less in payment for the good faith which I have worked in and offer to work in for this pious and holy cause.
I beg Y.M. not to let me and this cause become less fortunate than Columbus and his cause, since mine is no less important, nor is the love and the cost involved in saving it from oblivion with God’s help. I ask how much is a Columbus worth and I also want to know the reason, or is it that my cause stands to lose because of me, or do I stand to lose because of it? Alexander and Ulysses, the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Carthaginians and the Romans, as well as all the others that in past times deserved laurels, triumph, monuments and to have their names eternally remembered on roads, I understand they did not go beyond the Ganges in India to the East, or Hibernia to the West, or Tanais to the North, or Meroe Island on the Nile in the centre. I can excuse the goals they aimed at and their different causes and forces and I say that I can see myself walking all over Spain and Italy on my own, supporting myself with a cane, following my desires and eating mainly unripe wild fruit, fennel and other country herbs, many times without finding them either here or elsewhere. The cause will have neither a beginning nor a valid end, and with so many difficulties encountered after each step that it seems unbelievable that I persevered and triumphed (thank God). I shall not discuss the three yearsin this court, where I stepped in without a single maravedí, forced to sustain this great cause and to estimate how much it costs me and the hardships I endured and still endure for not abandoning it. I say, Sir, that I bear witness to God’s power in the same way I experienced it, as well as of Y.M.’s zeal for the souls of all those peoples, for only on their conversion does Y.M. spend his revenue.
I am aware of how much it damages the world to believe that those in government are interested, passionate, trustworthy and inclined, and I am aware of many wills since my demand is their great discoverer. I remember that when I requested the Church’s help in Rome, I said that I would justify both my cause and my part, and that by not denying the truth to me, my demand would not be denied. I was asked to give an example and I replied asking them to point out who else did what I did, and if it were now I offer Y.M. kingdoms, riches and glory; I point out the justified manners and means of the value that all sound; I give means, warnings and advice that are worth millions in gold, without one or the other, not even if I gave my life would I request anything for me but for the greater good of this cause that has always been only one: the obligation to help me for three reasons, my truth, importance and honesty to serve. This has always been my justice, Sir; I have always been pleading in its favour for three years; this much should be given to me, this is what I expect to receive from Y.M. as soon as possible to continue my services. Please note, Y.M., that you are worth everything you could have gained in this mission, which is a lot, and that the mission and those peoples are owed all the benefits they have lost, and I am owed everything I could have done, which is priceless, and the more I am held back, the more I will be owed, and that everything will be paid to me and to the peoples who should be benefitted. I also remember that when I found myself in need in Rome, I asked His Holiness Clement VIII’s permission to read him a document; he listened and asked me what I wanted; I replied that I wanted one of three things.
First, that I wanted him to hear about my cause the way I wanted to present it, to learn its value. Second, that I wanted to be believed in all I said and requested. Third, that if he did not want either the former or the latter, that I should be sent away, and right then and there he conceded me all I asked for. Again, with all my heart I ask Y.M. to consider everything I have outlined and promised in this memorial so that this mission gets under way and is saved from such enormous evils and damages that threaten it as I can see, evils that are now plaguing the Indies for lack of a good start. Sir, in this good start that I request for such a remote part of the world I remind you that if there are errors, there is no other where we can get it right and that regrets have no place afterwards, but it is all about the remedy right now, and this remedy lies with the favours that Y.M. does to the mission and to me, that is, to arrange all the necessary dispatches to my satisfaction so that the Viceroy of Perú will give me whatever I need for such an enterprise. I remind Y.M. that my satisfaction lies in securing this mission in all its benefits and for this to occur it is convenient for Y.M. to be so kind as to instruct the Viceroy to spend 500,000 ducats from the City of Kings’ coffers without excuse or delay, and to give me 1,000 men, as many married men as possible, and enough ships to take them, with supplies, weapons, ammunition, respect, ransoms and whatever else is necessary for a proper dispatch, each item expressed in your royal letters patent as clearly and firmly as possible so that the Viceroy understands Y.M.’s determination not to exceed the above mentioned sum. [The letter]should also mention why I go and what for, in other words, Y.M. will grant me a title (that I cannot do without) and instructions on what I am to do, and a letter that addresses all his ministers so that they help me and not hinder me, nor do they hinder the people that volunteer along the way and in Lima, and another letter so that in the event of my death I can appoint the most convenient person for the role, as well as 80 known clergymen and laymen that Y.M. allows me to take from Spain to my satisfaction for no other reason than Y.M.’s esteem for the cause, and for my goodwill Y.M. should grant this favour to [the mission] and to me, even more so because in order to go to Japan and to other areas in the Indies, clergymen were sent in droves, as well as whole armies were sent to the Philippines, and since the Southern Hemisphere is so large and there are so many needs, for it lacks all kind of benefits. Considering how expensive it is to start great enterprises with little strength and even less organisation, I offer my help to take these people and 3,000 ducats from the 6,000 that Y.M. has granted me for my expenses.
I would offer the remaining 3,000 were it not that I need them to pay part of my debts, but should Y.M. ask, I will give them. The people I request are the following: six priests; one of them is Mancio de Ureña, Canon and Treasurer of the Holy Church of Astorga; twelve Spanish Capuchins whom I received 102 lettersfrom and who are learned men, and even if they were not, it is now far more important to teach the natives by example than knowledge, but knowledge and virtue are always necessary. I want their help because of the fervour I see in them and the devotion I have towards St. Francis’ Order, and because they will give strength to our people. I am aware of the movement in the Dominican Order and Fr. Bernardino stands firm in his good purposes as does Fr. Andrés de Almeyda. I request Y.M.’s permission to take them with me, for I need them for great feats.
Two brothersfrom John of God; six war and sea captains that have offered themselves and six standard bearers; twelve good business experts to allocate tasks and to secure Y.M.’s share. Arquebus masters, blacksmiths, quarrymen, labourers, carpenters, oakum experts, grippers, riggers, coopers, dispensers, pot makers, a smelter, an architect, a painter, a sculptor, a silversmith, a mathematician to observe, describe and teach, an engineer, a physician, a surgeon, a pharmacist and all the many other trades that cannot be disregarded for the creation of a new world. It must be noted that all these people will be within the allowable numbers and that it would be more difficult to take the ten from Perú because it is not certain there would be any there than to take the 80 from here, which is as important as it sounds and as it is to take soldiers for whatever they are needed. It must be noted as well that they should not cost more than the allocated funds, as I have shown with the iron management and in those that follow below. I remind Y.M. that in the main dispatch it is necessary to support and preserve the mission by sending a large consignment of hardtack, flour, wine, oil, vinegar and other products to sustain people.
For return trips, new ships will be necessary to send back the old ones, [and the former require] a consignment of sails, riggings, caulk, lard, oakum, pitch apple, sets of pins, wicks, lead sheets, anchors, small anchors and achote resin for lamps. In order to train soldiers it is necessary to take a large batch of grogram, embroidery canvas, Rouen linen, or shirts, hats, rope‐soled sandals, swords, knives, tomahawks and machetes to tear vegetation down and to open up trails when marching. For the church it will be necessary to take an image of the Saviour, another of the Virgin Mary, a canopy, a pallium, a custody, chalices, ornaments, sculpted wax, bells, taffeta straps or embossed leather, organs and music with other items used in divine worship, its decency and authority to attract the Indians, as well as religious attire. It will be necessary to take a large batch of dresses, taffetas and coloured cotton clothes, cloth caps, footwear, mirrors, combs, scissors, knives, small bells, horns, ornamental necklaces and other eye‐pleasing glass items, and other exchangeable items to please male and female Indians and to rescue valuable items from them, as well as their food. It will be necessary to take a large stock of iron and steel to carve and to hold all tools from all kinds of factories, to work the land, plants and mines, and take a few ready made ones to use later. Four copper instruments with their ranges will be necessary, as well as iron ovens to extract freshwater from saltwater at sea and to extract palm wine on land, as well as for other uses. Pots, cauldrons for sugar and indigo, saucepans, frying pans, funnels to obtain a water supply, baking ovens to cover shortages and for sick people, as well as other copper pieces that come in handy when navigation is resumed. Artillery will be necessary for the fortress, versesto discover, muskets, arquebuses, gunpowder, lead, ropes, pike iron, bucklers and other weapons, and a good medicine chest.
I remind Y.M. that by purchasing the goods that will travel from Spain to Perú to continue the journey with the funds that Y.M. allows for expenses, and by purchasing all the necessary earth products for the trip in Trujillo, Saña, Ica, Sierra Valleys, and in other areas, it will be possible to save over 100,000 ducats according to best of my estimates, and with only 15,000 it will be possible to take all the people I request from here, hence ensuring that the mission is well organised and secured from beginning to end. Sir, all the batches mentioned before, that is, those for the main dispatch as well as the spares, the ships and their riggings, people’s wages, plus all the items I will take from Lima, which would be too long to enumerate, will not cost more than a one‐off disbursement of 500,000 ducats spent both here and there, of which I will not touch a single maravedí, ensuring that I supervise the pricing and the articles so that the dispatch is to my entire satisfaction.
I am happy to undertake this task to better serve Y.M. and so that the Viceroy will not be inconvenienced. You must believe that I want to take good people, good ships, good supplies, good weapons, good rations, good protection. I want to set sail on time and to bring good fortunes to God and Y.M. within my possibilities. I note that when I went on my discovery trip, it cost 184,000 ducats and I took 130 people; this time I offer to take 1,000 men, the married men’sfamilies and adventurers with the above mentioned 500,000 ducats. It must also be believed that I bear Y.M.’s finances in mind and that I proved it by declining to receive a salary and I do not ask for payment now, and that I will zealously guard the spiritual and temporal possessions of those peoples along the way. I have persisted for I do not feel pity for myself. Instead, it is my intention that the mission will not perish. For all this I beg Y.M. again to do me the favour I request,since it is convenient and unavoidable and my spirit is that of succeeding in this immense service to God and Y.M. I finally say, Sir, that if millions of greatly valuable persons have died while pursuing minimal ventures, that it is not much, that I am worth nothing, I spent my life suffering and persisting to bring the greatest of all missions to life and out of danger. I will die for it or in it. I offered it, Sir, many years ago, without taking heed of why or when, or how or at which stage it will be. Everything will be as Y.M. commands it. Everything boils down to actions.
About this item:
Eleventh 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. According to Kelly in this eleventh presentation memorial Quirós, after having spent 50 months at Court, argues again the benefits of a settlement in the Austral Lands, both in the spiritual and temporal spheres, the necessity of having administrative personnel and pleads for a dispatch to his satisfaction, reminding the King that the fleet for Tierra Firme leaves in December.
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, have been in this Court for 50 months, begging Y.M. to send me back on a journey to populate the territoriesthat Y.M. sent me to discover. I mentioned their greatness, their diverse peoples and riches of different kinds that are very necessary for Spain, and how within the Torrid and Temperate areas (I exclude the Frigid) its extension may accommodate many more lands, peoples and riches than those that seem within reach, which is proved by samples, speeches and the news. I demonstrated the dangers that they run in the present and future in matters related to Evangelical doctrine, as well as in mattersrelated to Y.M.. I warned that if the enemiesthat come and go from Terrenate in fifty‐league span fleets of twelve and more ships populate the area first, either Y.M. will have to expel them or leave them there, and that the former will cost a large sum in silver and men and the latter will result in their loss. I said that by spending only five hundred thousand ducats in Perú, Y.M. will win and secure all the goods of both gendersthat this great mission involves, and will avoid all possible evils, damages, losses and scandals that could ensue and spread over the two Indies (East and West) reaching Spain and lasting very long, perhaps for ever, completely or partially. I stated how important it is to establish that population hastily, with royal funds rather than from other sources.
My reasoning was that whoever spends 500,000 ducats will take 1 million in profits for themselves and will start 100 million evils without remedy, and if this expenditure were made by four or more parties, each one of them will want as much, and perhaps all of them will force Y.M. to spend on tempering their greed and cruelty; I mean more money and men than what I request should be spent only once in the mission. I said that even though those territories may be as extended as they appear to be, Y.M. should not pay any salaries in them – as is done in the Indies – to spiritual and temporal government ministers of justice, finance and war, soldiers and sailors, or others to whom Y.M. usually pays. If royal monies are not spent on foundations, building and decorating churches, convents, colleges, seminaries, hospitals, royal houses and castles, or on supporting their inhabitants and servants, and because of all these and other factories on land and sea, Y.M.’s obligations will be many, well built and finished more hastily, in the same way as those belonging to the community. I stated that public office will be Y.M.’s reward for great services performed by persons who – due to the good methods employed in their selection – will receive sufficient income to support themselves without rights. With secret care to gain knowledge about the lives, and certain and hasty punishment to those who misuse them, it should be believed that they will not only be wise at exercising their duties, but will also stay faithful and diligent as required. Moreover, the sale of such positions will be prevented, which is one of the greatest evils that Kingdoms can have, and one of the greatest benefits that the latter can receive, thus preventing Y.M. from losing anything.
On the contrary, so much will be gained as I can prove later. I showed how in those territories, in the Indies, in Spain and in all the states ruled by Y.M., and even in the rest of the world, there may be no civil lawsuits of any sort because they are not uncommon, and since there will be less criminals with such manner of investigation, that the truth will be discovered promptly. If it cannot, no innocents should suffer or die, nor should the peoples be scandalised at how easily lives, honour, freedom and assets are taken, nor at how human beings are tormented, which is so contrary to Y.M.’s Christian mercy, not only for what they are in themselves, but also for the many enormous and continuous offences against God and the poor. A certain person told me that it would subvert the whole Canon and Civil Law machine. I say that there should be a way for the law to stay straight, so that it can be neither tilted nor twisted, a way in which the peoples will secure their part and traps will be avoided, as well as the evils born from them, which we see that very few escape from. I stated how offences against the law and vices will be punished in those territories, mainly idleness without reserve or respect; how virtue will be greatly rewarded, all common needs will be addressed and peoples will be helped and guided. Since this is currently not the case, there is infinite loss and damage. In short, charity will become the norm and will be fervently exercised in equal share.
I stated that it is convenient that ecclesiastic and secular people be sent from Spain, the former to help the conscience and the latter to contribute their science and experience at war, sea and business, people whom I can seek advice from and whom I can entrust the first positions and cases that will be offered in the discourse without suspicion, of such importance and consideration as it is explained; and if I were missing, the work will thus be set on firm ground on such good columns that can support it in peace and justice until Y.M. decides on a different course of action, considering that such work will be worthy of prevention and repair, for it is only on such an endeavour that the greater good of those territories rests upon, and the greatest evils would be brought about by its absence – with the addition of the most needed experts and skilled workers. I warned that since those are such fertile, healthy and rich lands, I fear vices will take over, and I summon virtue, its foil, and I look for the good of others in the event of my death, whether this is believed or not. I mentioned the great benefit that Perú will receive by removing the surplus population, and how I could not choose the heads that I took when I went on my discovery voyage, and how expensive this will be if God does not fix it. It was of great value that all the people were not from the one nation. I spoke about the quantity of ships of all capacity that can be built in those lands for their own transport and trade in all the Southern seas, with great comforts, advantages, defence and security for all of them, and exactly as I want, there may be several distinguished navigation officers who are worthy of honours and prizes for their ingenuity and subtlety, and for their hard work and advantage – a detail that mattersimmensely to Y.M.
From those territories, I offered to discover the Anian strait in secret, because if it exists, the situation requires a solution, and if it does not, we will know for certain that via that territory the Indies cannot experience potential damage from the enemiesthat have looked for them five times. This will be done without having to pay the 20,000 ducats of perpetual rent that were requested from Y.M. for having discovered it with four completely prepared and armed ships and people on long‐term pay – briefly, without cost to Y.M. I demonstrated that if the population in the Indies could guide their government as appropriately as possible, Y.M. would receive an income of more than 150 million nowadays, and it would be possible to enjoy other infinite blessings from heaven in them and for them, and that if Y.M. received only an eighth of such income, it would still be more than what Y.M. receivesfrom all his kingdoms from here and there – a detail worth noting and considering, even weeping for, and last but not least to learn from. I demonstrated how to reform the Indies easily, at no cost to Y.M., and how to start an inestimable service to God and great increases in revenue, and how the Indians will become good Christians, political and rich – a highly convenient and necessary thing – so that the revenue will always be there and the Indians will become self‐sufficient and obtain the goods that they do not have, and of the very many that will generally be obtained Spain will receive its part. I also demonstrated how this could well be extended and directed all over Guinea, and I will demonstrate what I have written on the matter, as well as on how to take black population to the Indies.
I said and still say that everything that was stated is convenient for those Southern Indies because they will become the key, the relief and restoration for the Eastern and Western Indies, and all three of them will spur Spain, which is the firmest column of the Catholic Church, and this will suffice. Moreover, in that way all their fifths1 and royal rights will come to Y.M. from them cleanly and by just means, and I have shown how they will be many and lasting. In short, Sir, I demonstrated that Y.M. needs to acquire those kingdoms to preserve the current possessions and to avoid the represented, warned and reminded dangers. 1 The Spanish word is quinto, and it refers to the tax that was paid on crops or income, equivalent to one-fifth of the total. I have demonstrated that Y.M. is the richest and most powerful King and lord in the world, and I have proved it, for I have heard and still hear that so much poverty abounds that if I had not experienced the opposite as I had, this would have been enough to speak out of turn and to drop a great load that I have been carrying upon my slim shoulders for seventeen years, for the necessary credit with friends and foes, as well as for many other causes that are convenient for me to speak about and for Y.M. to listen. Many other things have I demonstrated, and many more can I demonstrate, and each one of them is priceless. I wonder, how much are they worth all together?
I said and still say that I was able to put them into practice, and can put them into practice still because God gave me the good fortune of Y.M.’s mission, and had I been helped from far back and in the Court given the dispatch I requested so many times and that Y.M. commanded, those peoples would be now enjoying God’s mercy and Spain a great return; I want the lands secured. Y.M., without the great precautions that should be taken against their dangers, and if not, let one enemy ship sail there (if there are not many close by or already in there). For this reason, I see disturbances, losses, damages and great expense for them as well as for us, and all of these should be paid by whoever caused them. I finally said and say that whatever Y.M. commands shall be and that I am a vassal to Y.M. and Y.M. is King and Lord of this vassal. The substance of this cause, its justification in general and in particular, I refer to the many memorials and reminders that I submitted, to my connections, to written history, to what I can say, to words, to authentic information and certifications, to lettersfrom ministers, to Y.M.’s letters patent, to the Papal Pontiff’s brief documents, to what common people say, to the favours that God did to the cause and to me in particular, to a gathering of mathematicians and pilots and of practical people, and to anything else that was sent for, asked for and wished.
This I say, for all that was raised and paid in small and large amounts for the good of this mission was not enough to let it go its course, and it sufficed that someone – I do not know who could dare do it, without any trace of love, fear or pain towards those souls that have been lost – made it stop for no reason, maintaining that if there were a reason, I would not come to this Court, and ever since I came that I would not stay for fifty months of continuous penury, but only for a day, because it is here that I discovered the thread against me. However, my truth does not fear. On its account and on that of the mission of founding many cities of Christian and political government, there is a continuous practice of charity which stems from converting infinite souls, even from the rescue of those in Purgatory. All in all, it was in God’s honour, glory and triumph of His Holy Church that I did what has been, can be and will be seen in its just defence. To this conformity I gave Y.M. the above mentioned memorials, and their copies to ministers and religious dignitariesso that they would entrust this cause to God and would beg him to extricate it from the confusion and danger it was in and is still in, as well as for other reasons that are convenient for me to speak and for Y.M. to listen. Y.M. has ordered me to be dispatched to my satisfaction, and what I have always wanted and still want is the mission to be well guided and secured from here.
The dispatches I received are two unclear royal letters patents that lack the necessary power for Y.M.’s will to be carried out and for the mission to receive all that it deservesto its convenience. I replied and what was said in Y.M.’s name was that I had to wait for another year, which was the main reason – among others – that I ordered the current and penultimate memorial that I will submit to Y.M., together with the accompanying map of the world that I have drawn so that Y.M. can proclaim that – by understanding where its hidden quarter is located – he can claim against the loss of its inhabitants’ souls, born and unborn, and to remind them that while this monarchy declines, in the same way others have, God will show them how Y.M. can double his holy Church and secure it against greater damagesthat may loom ahead – a very good reason for Y.M. to suit himself and to agree to the dispatch that my humble and inopportune requests could not reach. I beg Y.M. to note and consider the thoughts of an incomparable King, the onslaught of Royal spirits, works of greater importance such as these. Such great satisfactions that reach the Imperial heavens from the earth and harass hell, when they are compared with all the riches from this world, were of no use and no purpose, no matter how the money earned on such a job, possibly lent for one year – or two at the most – would yield returns of several million in goods and gold, for centuries. In short, with the forgotten in Y.M.’s Royal house, and even with the crumbs from your Royal table, they can be purchased and there will be a surplus, and Y.M.’s honour and glory will be doubled, as well as the Empire.
Time and time again, I request Y.M. to gain what is given in heaven and earth to those who are jealous of God Almighty’s honour temporally and eternally, with God and the peoples and for the good of all souls. You may feel regret from the very same service and risk losing what was gained, and remember that by delivering benefits that take so long to those peoples, I never had nor have any regrets, nor is it my obligation only. Moreover, I volunteered to forfeit my rights and serve whoever Y.M. wishes to send as my master for free, an offer that to the best of my knowledge was never made before. I prove my great faith with this mission that I always served with love and no money, and without asking what I would receive for what I gave, and I never asked for anything except for what was essential to continue, in the certain knowledge that past discoverers were never denied what they wanted for themselves, nor did they employ others for what they worked in. It is true that I have not been less faithful or industrious; that I do not want any other prize but the work that is denied to me and that only this work can satisfy me; and I certify that if I knew other ways to force, I would use them, or a higher cause to represent. Y.M. can estimate from me what I have already given willingly, which was not half a cloak but all my assets, with disregard of what I could earn. I gave my efforts, 20,000 leagues of journey, 17 years of my life, everything in order to liberate the territories and peoples that I discovered from oblivion and danger, whose rescue I have argued for five times and defended thousands, being this one the most expensive and the one that must be conquered.
Finally, I ask whether my work is worth less because it was I who did it? And are the things I offer worth less because I am perceived as ignorant of their great value? Or is it because I forget how much some of them cost me, and how much others can cost me? Or is it because I give them graciously, beg and bother with them,suffer and say nothing? Or is it assumed that I do not deem myself a man to whom God gave such gifts that only one of them suffices to build, enlarge and perpetuate not only houses, lineages and homelands, but also Provinces, Kingdoms and Empires? It is no fable or dream, and it is acknowledged as true that I am right, and that I am owed clear and firm justice that is not given to me, and it is not fair that I should stand to lose for being loyal and for having given everything that God gave me. Y.M., please do not spurn what I offer again, which is no less than the protection of a new world, populated, rich and at its best. It is the security for all the Kingdoms that Y.M. has. It is my industriousness, my solicitousness, my thoughts – which are not shortsighted or wrongly founded – and finally my life, which is as much as I can give. If this seemstoo little, I will give half of what I am worthy of from God and will give it whole, and I will lastly sell myself so that a little mud can be purchased with my last monies to make a brick and a tile, and use it in such a pious edifice, and if I had more, I would offer more. I beg Y.M. to receive such bribes from me, which could be taken without scruple. I cannot lose such a mission within reason; a man that can give and offer and remember so much; those rich innocent do not deserve the avarice, the lack of care or the mistrust that I see, or the great evils they have, but living benefits of piety and help soon, otherwise they will be dammed and they do not understand. All I have said hereby and in all my writings is or is not true; it is or is not of importance; it is or is not convenient to the intended population; and it is to be done well or badly, early or late; and if Y.M. never intends it to be done, I beg Y.M. to open my eyes, for it is justice I ask for, so that it becomes mine or someone else’s. If what I ask for will be carried out, I want it to be quick and correct, for if it is bad it should not be started, and much has been done for the worse already.
But may God not allow it that I become the murderer in the infinite deaths of lives and souls, and of all the other innumerable temporal and eternal good, which would amount to a sure bad start, nor that my soul owes and pays to the extent of such enormous sin, such enormous pain and such enormous damage, for I do not ignore what is necessary to do good, nor is this what I seek to end several kinds of torment. In short, My Lord, what I say is what Augustus Caesar said: well done is quickly done, why wait? And offering to do it with only 500,000 ducats spent once in Perú, without keeping a single maravedí, to set up and continue this great work in the manner that I have explained, and also because I found and showed ways and means, such as setting up a government in those lands by means of God’s power that will secure everything possible, the natives’ spiritual and temporal affairs, with great advantage, and how Y.M. can gain, to a greater or lesser extent, what was lost in the Indies, which is infinite. I beg Y.M. to notice and consider this service well because it is worth as much as any of the others mentioned before, and as a prize for all of them, I beg Y.M. to summon the people whose names I will say, so that in their presence and in Y.M.’s Royal presence they will explain why they treated it so badly, that if the knowledge of how valuable this mission is were not alive in me as well as my love, with the wish to secure a great and firm beginning, a good middle and a better end, whatever it costs, it would be dead and buried, I would be forgotten and Y.M. badly served. Moreover, they should give the reasons that motivate them not to dispatch me as Y.M. commanded to my justified and convenient satisfaction, so that they can answer my questions and I can answer theirs.
In that way, the truth will be known and Y.M. will not be deceived, or I will not be deceived, and punishment will be given if deserved. Again I beg Y.M. to give me such a favour, at least to speak the way I speak, with the just feeling that will have served my good spirits, so much endless work, so many precautions and vigils, an unbending loyalty, a plain truth, such evident fineness, so much suffering and perseverance, with all the other things used, purchased, represented and wished for; if everything is to end here and the mission is deserted – a mission that pleases God, who will not let that happen – the conscience that bites and itches, people’s voices crying, the common good lost, the religious orders’ zeal, the wise and the pragmatists’ astonishment, the great conveniences and their strength, together with my justice – and this is no mean part. In short, My Lord, I say that I have not started so seriously to end up a laughingstock. Again, I beg Y.M. to help me so that I can carry out this mission that Y.M. started and to return to God what He gave me, before my life ends in pretence. Help me, Y.M., in these thousands of works of piety and mercy, and do not allow me to lose all these and other favours that God granted me in his great kindness, particularly what I deserve, having played a part in the conversion of those infinite souls, for with due respect I say that I do not want to lose them but advocate for them, in the same way I ask Y.M. for justice against those who do not do it and prevent me from giving the greatest service to God and Y.M. His Majesty Lord Manuel, King of Portugal, discovered Eastern India by land and the Coast of Africa by sea, reaching the Cape of Good Hope.
Then he armed ships, searched, begged and promised the favours that Vasco da Gama carried out to finish his discovery. My Lord, I do not have the same knowledge that Da Gama had, but I was fortunate to have had seventeen years of live experiencesin the mission I am dealing with, and I beg with the fruit of my soul’s power and hard physical work, and I am stopped. I do not say I am not loved, but it is possible that to win over the will of one man – if he exists – who experiencesthe satisfaction that I can give, should cost so much since I sell myself cheap, meaning no offence to reason or justice if I ask for what I am owed for my travails, and to sell myself for what I am worth for what is left, and if the mission falls into the hands of someone who ignores it and does not love it more than he loves himself, there can be no more damaging thing than the regret it will inevitably breed, and if I am not available, I do not know if Y.M. can find someone else even for millions in gold. When the Catholic Monarchs attempted to discover the Indies, there was war and so much poverty in Spain that it was necessary to borrow the money used to dispatch Columbus on a venture to find out if the lands he thought really existed.
It is to be noted that his determination paid off and indeed there were infinite treasures of both genders, with the added result of the current peace and the riches in Perú, and that with only a small part from them Y.M. can carry out this mission that was already started, in whose name and considering God’s stake in it, I beg Y.M. to let me know what will happen both to the mission and to me, so that I can truthfully say that I am as faithful to God as I am to Y.M. Considering Y.M.’s obligation to heaven and my obligation to Y.M., I did not do as much as I could have, looking for the monies to redeem everything for Y.M. and nothing for me on my way to the Philippines – in the same way as others did – in two trips (with the possibility of having done at least twelve). My Lord, in short I say that if I have given all I had and done all I could, I offer to sacrifice my life, and I cannot go any forward. Consider your obligations, My Lord, those souls, the enemies, my justice, and the fact that this mission has the potential to double God’s Church and Y.M.’s monarchy, securing the two. For all this, and considering what people will say in the present and future, Y.M. must decide by himself, and dispatch me under his own authority, measured by reason, as I have requested. Finally, I would like to point out that if I started this mission wrongly, I would like to do good, and that the smallest service I wish to give God, I believe that if all earth riches were mine, and if all those who owe me remembered what they owe me and ought to pay, and to find the persons that have the obligation and yet delay my attempt. The Tierrafirme fleet is leaving in December; what must be prepared, sailed and performed is too much; lives are short, and what has been lost and will be lost is countless and will never be recovered. This is the justice that I have been asking Y.M. for in the past fifty months
About this item:
Twelfth in the series of fourteen known Quiros' 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. According to Kelly in this twelfth presentation memorial Quirós states "that the year which his Majesty ordered him to postpone his pretensions and projects and to await his pleasure had now passed. It deals with the extent of his discoveries in the Austral region, his proposals for a settlement there, the arms and ammunition required, the hope of founding a city which would require artists and skilled labourers, the building of small ships for further exploration, the mining of gold and silver, the spiritual and temporal benefits to be gained, the missionary friars who had volunteered, and the strategic value of communications between the Austral Lands and the Philippines, Peru, and New Spain".
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, say that the unknown southern part is exactly a quarter of the planet, and it is not known whether it is land, or water, or how much there is of both. It seems that it is too large to be only water and too disproportionate to have a good shape. The two habitable zones could easily contain ten Europes; depending on whether there is half, one third or a quarter, there would be five, three and a third, or two and a half; and if there were no more territoriesthan the ones we have seen, their length would be as the distance from here to the Caspian Sea, which could hold a Roman Pontiff, the German Emperor, Y.M. with all his States, the Most Serene House of Austria, and the Kingdoms of Hungary and Bohemia. There would be space for the Kings of France, England, Denmark, Poland, Norway and the Great Duke of Moscow.
The Great Turk and his possessions would also fit in, as well as Venice the Most Serene and all the other princes, and republics that contain infinite nations, including the Precopense Tartars. In short, the newly discovered territories with their islands at fifteen degreesto half, cannot be less than Europe, or six or seven Spains, and it could well be that they are twenty, fifty and more than seventy, as I showed Y.M. who kindly requested an explanation to estimate the great gift given to him by the Lord, and to consider the one that He kindly gave me, for in a world full of his servants and of wise, practical, prudent and rich men, he entrusted me with the value of such a great mission that I did and do as much as I was and am able for, and I say what I have said so many times, mostly in the latest memorial that I promised.
2.‐ It has already been a year since Y.M. told me to wait, and the way I see it, he does not seem about to dispatch me. I have not been given assurances that I may be dispatched one day.
3.‐ Should Y.M. be so kind as to conveniently dispatch me (as he owes it to God and to his own regal persona) at his quickest convenience, as I did not travel in the past and present years’ galleons, I can prepare myself to sail in next year’s galleon, with the necessary clergy and lay people that I requested to travel with me, to establish a certain and firm foundation for such great work. Once in Lima, I will search for and select people, rig out vessels, take different supplies for healthcare, clothing gear and sustenance, defence weapons, munition, tools, iron and copper, with all the navigational supplies. In short, whatever is necessary for divine worship, to win the Indians over in a Christian and prudent manner and to keep them happy.
4.‐ It is necessary to set sail at the proper time for such a voyage where Satan will not ease off from the start, but God will prevail and will be joyfully served with our arrival at the port of Veracruz in St. Phillip and St. James Harbour – 900 leagues shorter and a far safer round trip than sailing from México to the Philippines, where we will later need to build a lime kiln and a brick and tiles oven, to break stones, to cut trees, to fasten logs, to build a sturdy fortress and to keep it well protected with artillery to defend ourselves against the enemies of Europe or of the land, as well as sundry other attackers.
5.‐ It is convenient to breed, to sow, to plant, to reap and to look for food, for the need of sustenance is a continuous common enemy that cannot be killed with anything but bread.
6.‐ To build small vesselsso that it is possible to row short distances between islands and shallows, as well as larger and smaller ships, with all their riggings and sails, timber and clay, supplies and whatever else may be needed for future voyagesto the Philippines, Lima and México, where profitable trade will be focused, with the added benefit of security and protection both here and in those seas, with all the very many galleons that can be built there.
7.‐ To look for gold mines – which have already been spotted – and silver mines, which I have seen myself, and for their benefit build mills, employ divers and rakes for pearling, a practice we are aware of occurs in fifteen spots and have seen in two. To deal in all other precious, natural and artificial products, in short what industry can produce, which is what enriches the world after God sustains it.
8.‐ To lay the real foundations for a city that will become the head and the model for those that will exist in those territories. To ensure that God’s temples, their beauty, adornments, and service will be such that they will captivate and interest Gentiles, so that the practice of charity and the spiritual and temporal government will ensure that there will be nothing to repent for or to reform, owe or pay, but to achieve increasing gains.
9.‐ Based on all of the above and on what is said below, it is clearly necessary to take a large number of artists and of practical people for all other hands‐on jobs, as well as others who can set up a council which – after God – will keep dangers at bay, avoid evils and damages and – in short – will make it possible to achieve fair gains. Others will discipline warriors and seamen in the manner I intend to and is convenient. Others will teach everybody and reconcile them and others can later be sent to the hinterland and to understand how to communicate wisely, piously and bravely with the natives. Others will be able to make discoveries observing the sun and the stars, to mark the land, to search the seas, to chase the news, to write, to describe and even to paint what happens and is contained in whatever they see, so that once and for all what was not done in other discoveries is done well. Others will be asked to set up the second and third populations and to bring in others with great awareness and knowledge,so that they can add their bit. Other intelligent and diligent persons will be sent to this Court to keep Y.M. informed on what has happened and what has been agreed on the present and hoped‐for conditions so that they can faithfully record what is owed to those territories, to their natives, to God and to Y.M.’s service for the good of vassals and the universe. This matters as a whole under penalty of the opposite, on whom it is possible to trust the novelties of profit that will be sent to Y.M. with good will, making sure they are in good quantity.
Some captains that can make themselves understood and who have other necessary resources will travel to México and Lima to take the forced aid people so that they can continue their work learning how to come and go and how to manage themselves on firm ground and at sea for the common good. Besides, we do not know whether the Indians will greet us without weapons, welcome us in a friendly manner, trust us, understand whatever is said to them about the heavens in Romance language and in Latin, or whether they will believe and learn it quickly, or whether we will learn their language or they ours, least of all whether the soldiers will live as it is owed to God, Y.M. and the natives. In short, Sir, I say that all this and whatever else is done in that part of the world – both in the present and future – will demand money, well‐intentioned persons and a man with enough strength of spirit and skill to repair, compose and content himself with everything that is offered to him both here and there, and everything can be done with God’s help and the minimum outlay I mention. According to what is said, Ostend cost several million in gold and 100,000 men on both sides which purchased each one of the plazas at this price in the rebel states.
There are not enough people in Europe or gold and silver in both Indies, not even after those securely earned and costed that will be worth to Spain as much as the Southern territories will be worth in one year. I say this because I can see it becomes expensive to populate with only a thousand men, considering that there is a population surplus in Madrid of 150,000, and 500,000 ducats for a very rich Perú, where all the great Kingdoms will be discovered from, thus doing a great service to God and to Y.M., enjoying all the wealth all over the world with all its comforts and conveniences, losing 2,000 each, and 10,000 if there is a delay, and even more if there are further delays, in which case everything will be lost and everything must be paid to God, to those souls, to Y.M. and to the thousands who are the cause of such perditions. I must point out that when I was sent on my discovery trip, I could not make the riches from different areas underground and underwater manifest themselves somehow and come to Madrid all together in one month (even more so since I was sick and alone and with certain evil correspondences in the service of Y.M., as well as other opponents to defeat and appease), for two would be too late as I understood it here, and its delay took years and years.
10.‐ I have represented this mainly to show the importance of such an undertaking, how much must be prepared, sailed and laboured for its benefit, together with the need to keep a fast pace to achieve its completion. I remind you how short lives are, as well as how convenient it is to have a well agreed and preventive start, which all its greatest and longer lasting advantages consist of, while it would be just the opposite with a bad start. With all this, and refreshing one’s memory with the following reasons, I deem it impossible that Y.M. would delay my dispatch, not even for a single day.
11.‐ When it comes to greatness, nothing is greater than populating so many good discovered territories with Christians, and to remember that the area is full of promise. What is it that God created in all of them?
12.‐ If [the territories] are abandoned because it is said that Y.M. would not be able to support them, I say that they will be self‐supporting and they will in turn support all of those where Y.M. is master in those areas as well as in these. To preserve some of them, it is convenient to acquire others – exactly as I have shown – and such deeds should be based upon God’s power and wisdom rather than human judgement and strength.
13.‐ When it comes to riches, which ones are greater than those that bear some promise whether they are discovered on the ground or at sea? Whatever there may be in those territories, parallel to Monomotapa and Potosí, which are the two richest sites in gold and silver known in the world, could be enough to redeem and to relieve Spain, who has the need of newer Kingdoms and greater revenue, for it is true that the current ones will not provide or secure it as well as it is necessary.
14.‐ When it comes to public benefit, there is nothing more universal or with more commodities.
15.‐ When it comes to fame and glory, there is no better or more everlasting cause.
16.‐ When it comes to enjoyment, there is nothing like it. I went there and saw the place with my own eyes. I know where the lands I discovered are, and I ask Y.M. to keep them out of harm’s way. Y.M. is a King and powerful lord and has the obligation of doing so.
17.‐ When it comes to cheap labour, I will sign that I do not want anything from what has been done and what will be done, so that the mission is less costly and my share becomes one of its biggest assets, as well as of those who are going to work on it.
18.‐ When it comes to zeal, I can truthfully assure you that I wish to God that His Holy will may be fulfilled there for whatever Y.M. commands me and for the natives, so that not even one of them will be offended in the least and of them will be rightly indoctrinated, taught and assured about your justice for our people, that both they and I will adjust ourselves to reason, making use of the means that time shows, or better say God will provide.
19.‐ When it comes to keeping the worthy surplus population in Perú, what better preparation or part in which there is more to gain, or greater and necessary relief for those Kingdoms, for two different causes? One of them concerns the Indians and the other concerns Y.M.
20.‐ When it comes to a [historical] time, there is no better one than the current one, with all its similarity to Octavianus’ peace for Y.M.
21.‐ When it comes to God’s honour and glory – which is everything – and for whose love riches, honour and lives should be spent and risked, there is no greater or splendid service than to rid those peoples of their devil worship and to attract them to their Creator and Redeemer in infinite numbers. If all of them, Sir, were kneeling in Y.M.’s presence, representing their perdition, alleging their rights, tearfully begging the remedy that Y.M. gives to others, remembering that what will be mentioned in the present and future is where their their souls’ salvation or damnation lie. I believe that the greatness of Y.M.’s Royal spirits and Christian piousness would be greatly damaged, therefore it becomes convenient to give me a good, clear and firm dispatch as I asked, to attend to those living needs and just relief.
22.‐ When it comes to the security of all the spiritual and temporal goods involved in such a great cause, what is firmer than populating? If it came to happen that the enemies of our Holy Mother Church have populated those nearby territories(considering that the further away from Spain they are, the more they should be taken into account, as I have shown) and (God forbid!) have sown the seeds of Martin Luther and Calvin and have reaped large numbers of souls for hell, under Y.M.’s protection they can resurge in heaven. How many millions in gold would Y.M. have paid without delay so that it will not be said in the present and future that the Holy Gospels heresy was preached in the first place? I am certain that since Y.M. is the Catholic King, Defender of the Faith, who supports the Church in many different places, and under whose responsibilities are those that I referred to, he would feel for them in the extreme.
23.‐ All the causes I have given and the reasons I give for Y.M. to sow (for whoever does not sow will not reap) are so fixed that the smallest of them would involve a much higher expense. I have noticed that what I am owed is nobody’s concern; I do not ask either what I am worth or not, and I do not want either the complete mission’s price, which is infinite, or what I offer to gain and to preserve Y.M.’s wealth given my services’ value is worth millions in gold, the only means is my request for Y.M. to spend once, for God and the Kingdoms, and to secure his possessions.
24.‐ I would wish to know what would be the least I would receive for my services if I were to ask today, and the least that should be given to me for the service I offer myself for, if I were to ask tomorrow, being able to make use of many examples from the past and present, and to rightfully say that if those rewards were justly given, my justice is worth more than twenty‐four carats.
25.‐ If I have mentioned such expense several times, it is because a certain minister told me that in order to dispatch the fully equipped 1,000 men that I have requested with all they need, it would cost a million and a half, even more so in Perú because of the substantial salaries and the lack of preparation, and how right he was if such an expense were made the ordinary way and if I were not the distributor, purchaser and overseer who does not receive a single maravedí, but because such an undertaking does not require a higher amount. Again I say, Sir, that only with those 500,000 ducats I will make it happen as well as it has been represented,so help me God.
26.‐ If such sum of money seems excessive, Y.M. can give instructions to spend much less, for in any case I will obey as I must and I will continue to serve as always.
27.‐ If there is a shortage of funds, it is possible to borrow some for a short time from what the Indians in Perú have in their coffers, which they call community coffers and they do not make use of them. Otherwise, they can be borrowed or exchanged from other Kingdoms or from private individuals living in them, or mint copper maravedís in Segovia. These will suffice to redeem those infinite innocent people and their territories and without question they will pay 1,100 for 1 in gold, silver, pearls and other riches that were spotted and that we are aware of. It may be that diamonds, rubies and other precious stones can be found as well, for God gives to those who endeavour to pledge themselves in works that honour Him. One such example is that of the Catholic Monarchs. When they were determined to discover the Indies, they were so engaged in warfare and were so poor that it was necessary for them to borrow the funds to dispatch Christopher Columbus the stubborn, and not to populate 3,500 leagues of land – those I am talking about – without taking into account what that quarter of the planet promises, but in full doubt whether any of those that he supposed would be there actually existed. It was the great Lady Queen Isabel who helped him and she sold her dresses just for that purpose. A noteworthy resolution based on love! And was it not a noteworthy new world that Our Lord gave them, and to redeem so many fleets laden with gold, silver, pearls, emeralds and all the very many other riches, and everything that was done with them until the present day and what will continue to be done – God willing – for He can also take away! It is true that the love Y.M. will show will not be less noteworthy, nor will the favours that He will promise and that we expect if we work quickly, for charity does not suffer space, even less so those who need it.
28.‐ Or, would Y.M. be so kind as to send twenty‐four Franciscan monks and twelve Capuchins (whom I have received 250 letters from and I have never met any of them – I only know that they are driven by God) to beg in Spain and in the Indies, in the same way as the Trinitarians and the Mercenaries do to rescue captives from the Moors, and there are innumerable Southern peoples whose rescue I seek who are held captive by the demons. For this reason, once the gold and silver mines in Perú have dried out and if there were no ships or such a large surplus population, it would be fair to the same extent as it would be pious and great to let the rest go from Spain, for it is known that for the same that seven leagues in the Isle of Terrenate have cost in money and men in the past six years, I would have populated those Kingdoms seven times as much and made them prosper and rich – the same Kingdoms that Y.M. sent me to discover – in the same way he commanded Terrenate, and it has not given any results nor will it give any in a thousand years, not in the same way as the Southern territories can in just one spending two on its garrison – and that would have been enough to populate that quarter of the world over thirty times with what was spent on trifles since I have been in this Court, where I have seen how much attention was paid to California and its counter‐coast, as well as the esteem given to the person that went there, with the goodness and brevity of his dispatch and the little that was felt for all the monies spent, considering that it promises very little, which is not much and cannot become much. However, I would like to say, but I will not, since there were reports that cannot be denied on what I have been accused of and it pains me to say so, and what I have done with love and what I persuade with fear, not of men, and wish to perform with courage, was not plain and straight in the service of God and Y.M., inestimable and without comparison, without intending any honours, profit or rest for myself, but immense travails apart from what I have been through, as well as the constant risks, distresses and dangers that I can see from here and that I request as a favour. Text in italics on the margin: There is a monk in the Monastery of St Antonio de la Cabrera who offers his help when needed, plus other fifty monks who want to preach those peoples and to sacrifice themselves for God. There are also three clerics that have been here for four years awaiting execution.
29.‐ The same charity can be exercised by city and town governments, by Cathedrals, Archbishops, Bishops, Abbeys, rich convents and people of high standing, and even lesser and poorer ones would give their share gladly for such a praiseworthy deed. I give my industry, my life and 3,000 ducats from the 6,000 that Y.M. granted me, for I need the remaining 3,000 to pay my debts. If all 6,000 were necessary, I would donate them gladly and would seek an agreement with my creditors to inform them how good this mission will be, in case there is no other solution but to rely on charity. I believe that only in Madrid it will be possible to raise a much higher amount than what is said. God’s purse is large, his Divine Majesty will provide, and there has been and will be nobody who does not trust his infinite kindness. I have experienced this to such an extent that I have become a witness and chronicler of God’s power.
30.‐ If Your Majesty wishes, you could help with two or three ships, artillery, weapons, munition and other things that can be found in the port of El Callao, where the journey will start.
31.‐ If Y.M. will not dispatch me in any of the above mentioned ways, or in a fairer, less expensive and safer one – should there be one – would Y.M. be so kind as to give me the necessary papers so that I can search among Y.M.’s vassals both in Spain and in the Indies, in order to start the mission before it becomesthe end of me? With this I would do as much as I can, so that the mission is not lost in its entirety.
32.‐ The cuts and reductions I offer are to the best of my ability, but under‐expenditure in the service of God or of Y.M. is not the right thing to do, particularly for such a venture, because it will be said that due to the unavailability of such a small amount for such a venture, the greatest, most powerful and richest Monarch ever to have existed – as I have shown – purchased a new world of goods that are nothing but evils. For example, in the Indies it is not fair that there should be those who only want a universal reparation which is so profitable for Y.M., so necessary to infinite numbers of people and an obligation in God’s honour, there are neither monies nor valid means, and I could say much more. To ease my conscience, nothing would be firmer or longer‐lasting, or more honourable and lucid, or worthy of laurels, or of certain reward in both lives than for Y.M. to spend his funds from the City of Kings’ coffers, from what is available to eat here and there, for the reasons I have already outlined and for others that I can give, all of them very powerful indeed; considering that the best service I can render Y.M. is to deal with the present and to secure the future – both of which are not to be confused.
33.‐ In short, Y.M., together with your vassals, shut those open doors to the enemies of the Catholic truth. Acquire more honour and glory for God where repugnant demons who receive so much help are adored and take souls with them by the millions. If accounts are managed well, it will be discovered that rescuing one hundred of them does not cost two maravedís, nor does each island cost three, nor can each Kingdom be rescued for four, given on loan for one year to obtain millions in gold in return after a very short time and for ever. I fail to understand how that does not entail pain or how to express what I feel about this mission, which – all things considered – is the greatest of all missions after our redemption, but to shout “look, Y.M., it will be snatched from your hands, with the eternal fame that venture and quills offer you”. Y.M., enjoy your happiness and look at the many men and financial gains that will come in handy, either to recover what is lost or to defend the Kingdoms that enemies will attack, as well as plunder land and sea and disturb trade on both, and to become their sole rulers – at least in part. If such massive losses were to follow, together with damages, evils and scandals, how many will time show, and it is time itself that will disillusion you regarding all I have said, warned you, demonstrated and reminded you several times with healthy zeal. It is true that I have made God my witness, together with Mr. Luis Belasco, President of the Indies, former Viceroy of Perú and first minister of Y.M. whom I suggested this venture to, and he will say whether I entertain myself in Lima as soon as he learns what Y.M.’s will is, I said he did not want to trust my absence for such an important venture; he held my determination in high esteem, which speaks volumes about his and my good will.
34.‐ I beseech Y.M. to give me permission to ask those who contradict, deviate or slow down the dispatch that Y.M. instructed to be given to me, the second time to my entire satisfaction or better say to Y.M.’s, who does not want errors to be made, what they think about this mission and this man. It appears that, without question, they judge both the mission and the man. I want them to say whether this mission should be given up because it is either too big or too small, considering that in big missions they must show great spirits and the fineness of zeal. Or is it because I am small and skinny, and God chose to entrust it to my shoulders for two months? What do they feel about my request and my aspirations? Or is it that it is too expensive for them to afford the bargain that I have made of my industriousness and my life, with all the rest on my part? What will they say about my finely proven loyalty? Or if I have what it takes to satisfy them? Speak clearly to me, for I cannot guess, or bear a torch that I can use to search in a manner which they can regard this cause piously. I believe, if I am not mistaken, that they must do what I do, what I did and what I aspire to for this cause. Otherwise, they must let me do it, for all your [future] gains involve so many precious things that it is unfair for Your Majesty to lose having such good vassals, or for God to lose those souls that He created and loves, even though there are those who say that their time has not arrived yet and 1612 very good years have gone by. I would like to be a Saint Paul to have full knowledge of what I am saying.
35.‐ There is no shortage of voices that say that since God does not influence the will of those whose turn it would be to dispatch me, except Y.M. and the State Council, that maybe Your Divine Majesty does not want me to do such a great service to you. To this I reply that it is not only I who deservesto finish such a mission in which not only the whole of Chirst’s College will be fully busy, but also that I should not have started it and that I am fully unworthy of it, not only to put both my hands on it but also my eyes and tongue. I also say that I deserve now a big punishment because I am still alive and the mission dies, for if God entrusted it to me up to now, judging his divine will from the start did not trust others but me, and it maybe that God will not move his not because others do not deserve what they indeed do deserve, if only they were destined to continue such a mission. Sir, I cannot accept the fact that it is probably that God does not want me because I can see that it is them who do not want me, and if not, they should change their mind and they will see whether God wants me or not. That is the way I did it, without waiting for Him to send an Angel to reveal or to send me thousands, but to spend the maravedí that I had. In short, I gave what I had and handed over profits, assuaged doubts, dealt with harshness, and it was God who triumphed, not me.
36.‐ To those who say that if this is God’s work, it will be done, I say that I have followed it from God and that is the way I consider it, in the same way as the rest of the world, and will continue to do so until I die for it. Also, the worst sign I can see is that it does not hurt, and for this reason they do not complain the way I complain to God and I complain to Y.M., to whom I humbly beg not to allow or consent or suffer such innumerable heaven and earth losses, nor should I lose my fair share for all the souls that can be saved from the present to the Day of Atonement, nor should I become the most unfortunate son of Spain considering that I am not the one who has lesser thoughts and wishes, nor am I the one who has suffered and struggled the least to free the mission that I was entrusted to start from oblivion and danger.
37.‐ With this last memorial, it seems I have fulfilled my duty, having God entrusted me with this cause, His cause, to show those peoples their remedy, my solicitousness and truth, which I deal with now. What I ask for is the justice of a good dispatch or plain disappointment. Y.M. should give me either one thing or the other in good conscience, for I have been at this court for seventeen years and a half, and it will soon be five that I have been at this Court, waiting and wishing that God in his kindness will win those souls and that Y.M. does not lose all the precious things that I have represented and remembered so many times. If I am not granted any of the favours mentioned, or if my demand is not taken for what it is and for the greatness that it will bring, even though it may be reduced, or if my person, whose loyalty cannot be questioned, whose actions cannot be taken away, or whose rights and desires cannot be destroyed, or the thoughts that God gave me cannot be taken away from me or where to show them, it is not for its purpose or for anything else, for delivering my speeches.
I have not found anything (such as this paper shows) that can persuade me that for want of such a small sum of money such an important and necessary mission for Christianity will be discontinued. In short, if both the mission and myself are worth very little or nothing, I beg Y.M. – as painful as it is for me – to allow me to leave this Purgatory, where I am suffering in vain, with no certainty to retire to a cave as Saint Peter, not because I denied Y.M. what I served with love and no interest in more important things, and what I offered and begged, and the means I used for Y.M. to double and secure the Holy Church and his own Monarchy, and in order not to lose all his other infinite blessings from heaven and earth that God sent his way through me, the price of which, as well as that of thousand costly and painful things, has tormented me here and for which I have been mistreated and I have been sailing against the wind and wasting my time in suspense and delay, and have suffered (if it had happened in Sierra Morena, I would at least be able to defend my cloak and the honour I earned the way I should), that I should be dispossessed before Y.M.’s eyes as well as of all the great favours that Our Lord has granted me, thus offering them for nothing, and that God’s enemies will enjoy them and that Y.M.’s will be avenged and that those I have will triumph, because I defended and still defend a just universal cause, and for a thousand other reasons that nobody wanted to know, even though I have mentioned them and even though I clearly requested to be brought face‐to‐face with those who felt or said the opposite of what I said, felt or feel.
I do not know, Sir, what the mystery of not granting me this favour and to estimate minimal things is, and to despise such a great one that has been so costly to me. I return to the cave and will spend my life crying for those infinite souls that have been condemned to eternal death for not spending 500,000 ducats when it costs more to build a house. If I had millions in gold, Sir, I would give them all just to save only one, with the same love which I have offered my life with for all of them, having met continuous formalities without being able to do anything for them. I do hope God will take care of them and of me because there is nobody who can shout from the rooftops what I have given up for my love of them. Behold, Y.M., what is lost and what you stand to lose. It is not fair for me to lose what I have said in this and other writings. Behold, Y.M., how much I can be satisfied for what I did and for what I was prevented from doing, and the least I can do for God in what I have suggested is of greater value for me than all earthly riches. Behold, Y.M., you are my King to defend me, my lord whom I served, my judge to give me justice and who can and must give a remedy to everything. With this I finish, neither deceitfully nor ungratefully, for it is well known how clear I have been, and it is not because of me that God’s new vineyard is lost. I leave it to His hands to plant, to benefit, to fence, to guard, to enjoy and to all the comings and goings and dangers it is in simply because that is the way some want it, and I kneel down at His holy feet feeling so small and lonely as I am regarded, as full of grievances of the worst sort as I am, because I did much more than I could for my King and country in the greatest mission ever attempted in this world.
38.‐ I justified this, God’s cause, as much as I could, on his Holy Church’s part, on behalf of those peoples’ souls, born and unborn, on behalf of Y.M.’s and my country’s soul, on behalf of every man’s soul who deservesto participate in such a cause, as well as on my own. There is some handwritten text: [illegible text] 100 ducats well paid here, and six‐thousand [illegible] of great understanding [illegible]
About this item:
Thirteenth 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. According to Kelly this thirteenth presentation memorial Quirós reminds "the king that he has twice ordered his dispatch - the second time to his satisfaction, on the understanding that he would leave the matter in abeyance for a year, but now two years had gone by. He had already spent 18 years in an endeavour to bring the Christian faith to the natives and had now spent 72 months at Court to secure an acceptable dispatch. He points out again the greatness of his discovery and urges that the justice of his claims be recognised - in this cause he has already navigated 20,000 leagues. He also proposes various possible ways by which the expedition could be financed."
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quirós, was sent for by Your Majesty twice – the second time to my satisfaction – then told to wait for one year and almost two have passed. I should remind Your Majesty of two things, both of them worthy of living memory and to be mourned eternally for the little esteem in which they are held. The first one is that what I have represented so many times, and so many times has been put on hold, is worth no less than starting many Kingdoms of concerted government, founding cities, opening businesses, communicating riches, accommodating vassals, assuring states, discovering the remaining lands, teaching all their peoples to leave bestial life and to enter politics, together with other useful skills, all of them for Y.M. and nothing for me, except for the travails I will endure with twice as much joy, for what it is said in the next chapter, which is about the second promise – for which I represent my justice and remind you of my obedience.
My justice is based on the very strong and firm principles of God Our Lord’s hour, upon which I intend to base it, and that His Church will spread all over the rest of the world, and in the glorious triumphs that will ensue from the effects of Catholicism in the conversion of infinite numbers of people who expect it, with their right to universal Redemption, and in the salvation of their condemned souls, on Ecclesiastical and secular people’s merits, both from here and there, who in value of the Southern hemisphere, both known and unknown, temporally and eternally for God and men. For this reason I spent my poverty and despised profits, sailed and walked twenty‐ general and in particular by any means will favour them and help them to leave their miserable and pitiful state, preaching the Gospel, exalting the Catholic faith or to die a martyr for it, in the hundreds of temples, convents, seminaries, schools and hospitals that will be founded and dedicated to God, Lord of the heavens, earth, sea and of the men who will go and live in them, each one to his ministry, the natives participating in the aspect of justice owed to them, and in the continuous services of different kinds that all at once will be rendered to the same Lord, on the thousands of altars to be erected and in the millions of masses that will be celebrated, being the most acceptable sacrifices to His Divine Majesty in the use of the holy sacraments and all their fruit, in the divine services, praises and gratitude given to God for being who He is, and for all the received and expected benefits from his goodness and providence, and in the prayers, petitions, rogations, processions, solemn and double celebrations that will be given to the honour and glory of Christ, Our God and human Saviour, of his Holy Mother Our Lady the Virgin Mary and of all the celestial Court Angels and Saints, in all the alms and goodness, piety, mercy, charity and justice deeds, and in all other virtuous acts that in general will be infinitely performed in all those lands, and to banish the old possession from them as well as the continuous adoration that those simple peoples under Y.M.’s rule bestow upon the devil (the worst of all miseries) because they do not have anybody who teaches them all about their Maker and Saviour, whom they must adore, serve and love all their lives with all their strengths, and in my eighteen years of great travail and persistence, and in the wishes I have that everything is exactly as represented, and does not stop there but continues further and further, from improvement to improvement, to the possible perfection and to the end of the world.
Sir, this is my justice. My justice is in all that was said and in what I do not know how to say: the current and future dispatch me in some way, with or without money, or be upfront with me. Y.M., I have been at this court for seventy‐two months, weaving like a silkworm, whom I envy for sparkling while making thousand leagues, risked my life and honour many times, and endured suffering for what I leave to God. Behold, Y.M., if my justice is good, or if its truth and clarity can be denied to me, or if it is reasonable that I should lose it being Y.M.’s vassal, because I say with the respect I owe that I do not want to lose it. Again I say, Sir, that I do not want to lose such high favours as those that Our Lord has bestowed upon me, and that since He helped me, and since nobody wants to lose what God has bestowed upon them, I do not mean all of mine, nor his great greatnesses, but the smallest share, and I offer all of them together to Y.M., with such great love that by itself it would be enough for Y.M. not to reject them. To sum up, my justice is the charity for this deed, with a solemn vow to the eternal God to represent it as many times as I can and in as many ways as I know, and wherever Y.M. happens to be, until Your Majesty says yes or no to me. I say that by keeping so silent, even the stones would scream.
I ask for justice, and I remember that what is already owed to me cannot be satisfied, but if what I have referred to is considered with attention, as well as at the eighteen years that from start to finish I wasted arguing for a remedy without stopping for a day and a few hours, and it will be seen that if I spent all of them, or even twelve (years) in your benefit, that my work would have produced fruits for heaven and earth, the loss of which represent a continuous torment for me, without remedy or relief. Y.M. should pursue such a venture on your own and with promptness, or ask me to make an attempt at achieving it on God’s account, whose divine providence I have pledged. Y.M. must the best out of his work; Y.M. please consider that I have been pining, persisting and waiting, and that even hope is denied to me. Y.M., be aware that this deed will be lost, and that your smallest part is priceless, and if you wish to find a remedy, it is as simple as the following. I have always been firm in my conviction, giving more than enough reasons for Your Majesty to spend five hundred thousand ducats only once to set it all up, in the way I have explained, and it is convenient to apply the remedy – lest there should greater evil, damage and loss, as well as no less financial and human expense.
Since the monies that Y.Majesty organised to be given to me were not given to me, and the greater good of those peoples awaiting for it is delayed, I considered it my duty to come up with a decision with haste – a brief, non prejudicial one that would not cost Your Majesty’s coffers a single maravedí1 , of good credit because Y. Majesty spends and can spend, and will not allow the loss of such a great venture that Your Majesty started due to a small shortage of monies. To sum up, I have no excuse in front of God, Y.M. and the peoples. In Perú’s City of Kings there is copper that was brought from Chile, what is more, it is possible to request as much as it is necessary. Close to this city, there are many mines full of this metal that were discovered by a Xerez born there. In each vacant mint, it is possible to create another in the fashion of that from Segovia, and for this purpose there is a river next to the village, and an irrigation ditch full of water both within and without the city. If Your Majesty wishes, it is possible to mint seven hundred thousand or more ducats, one hundred to buy the copper, another one hundred for all the expenses and labour involved in minting the ducats, and the remaining five hundred thousand to send me off.
To speed up the process, it is possible to take two hundred and fifty, or one hundred and twenty‐ five thousand old or new ducats with a countermark, and doubling their value, they will be used for funding the trip, taking into consideration that increasing their value twofold is financially sustainable in that city, for a real2 is the same as a cuarto3 , thus eight maravedísfrom here would become thirty‐two there, making it possible to mint a lower amount – either here or there – and from a good estimate, if they are taken from Spain, they will not cost more than twenty‐thousand ducats in the new world, and if they are minted in Perú, they will not cost more than a sheet of paper. These monies will not be excessive in that city, where they are very necessary to trade vegetables and the like which are sold by indigenous and mulatto women, in whose hands they will be as if they were deposited in a bank, until the above mentioned seven hundred ducats are sent from the first silver, gold or pearls from the Southern lands, to recover the monies and stop their circulation. Your Majesty will not have to use his own or other people’s funds; he will have rescued his own service to God as well as those magnificent lands, all their very many peoples and the possibility that they can rescue themselves. I beg Y.M. not to deny them such a brief and inexpensive remedy, or such a favour to me as a reward to my (former) services and to my wishes of being of further service. I believe that those citizens who would provide the funds with good will may be able to clearly see the unique service that they will render to God and Y. Majesty, without any cost to them, together with the glory of becoming the main agents of a deed of such greatnessin new lands, as well as for the great comforts and benefits that they will reap from the trade, and because they certainly know through what they have experienced themselvesthat they can send their children without dowry to marry and to live there, and because the sooner that such a venture is carried out, the greater the promised benefits.
And since it will be a two‐year loan, together with other good reasons I can show, I again say that there are so many benefits and interests that will result from such a good deed that I understand that if they were to lend the above mentioned amount – or even more – they will provide it later, even if they undertook such a venture by themselves, I am of the idea that if Your Majesty spends his own funds promptly and spends them with good will, the returns will be prompter, more certain, more secure and more substantial. I beg Your Majesty to kindly agree to any of these strategies. Another plan could be that the Franciscans or Capuchins beg for alms in Spain and in the Indies for the same purpose, or grant me letters empowering me to search for Y.M.’s vassals in the Indies and in Spain with whom I could undertake such an honourable and necessary journey, which would be so profitable for Y.M., and to estimate the care, generosity and spirit with which I am willing to undertake the dangers that are not unknown to me, as well as the certainty of hard work and thousands of other unbearable things, so that Y.M. can make his empire twice as large and secure and enjoy all the certain promise of the Southern lands.
And if in order to dispatch me, if it were necessary to sell the fountains, large candlesticks, braziers and cups – I do not mean the gold and silver ones that are of no use – but those made of brass, tin and copper, as well as iron grilles and door knockers, half of the bells and even more, it would look excellent in God’s eyes and in the eyes of the zealous, and if for want of something much better, the flints from Madrid were to be used for minting, or if money could be made from lead or soles – as it was done on other occasions of greater poverty and scarcity, so as not to charge a quarter of the world – this would become a deed worthy of praise and celebration for generations to come. If Your Majesty will spend neither a lot nor a little money, nor agree to any of the above mentioned suggestions, nor persuade some to help the rest, nor unite all into one, nor confirm with certainty that I will be sent in Março’s galleons, it is a fact that Your Majesty is not interested in the Southern venture, a fact that will astonish the world, as well as your great courage and dignity, since I have shown Y.M. how to achieve such a venture for the cost of a sheet of paper. It is also certain that Your Majesty does not want my person at his service, for this reason Y.M. must give me the permission that I requested and request to leave this Court. It is enough to repress my wishes, enough to have suffered in a thousand different ways, more than enough to be in debt to sustain Y.M.’s service and to suffer for them, and what I do not say is also enough.
I have the spirit to give Y.M. everything I have worked for and acquired all my life, as well as to offer the rest of it for nothing, and the protection of a new world, populated, rich, splendid, full of different things – the smallest of them incalculable – and that there is someone who does not have them so that Y.M. can receive them all, someone who knows how a loss feels as well as I know how suffering feels. All of these grave burdens I leave on the shoulders of Your Majesty’s Royal conscience, advising that the best of my services is that of speaking clear truths to Y.M., and that the best I can do for such an incalculable venture is to die in it or for it.
About this item:
Fourteenth (and apparently previously unrecorded) in the series of known Quiros' 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 fourteenth presentation memorial Quirós begs Phillip III to respond to his repeated requests to back a missionary expedition to the lands he had earlier discovered. He expresses his frustration with the Crown for ignoring him and notes that the king has even refused to see him in person.
My Lord I, Captain Pedro Fernández de Quiróz, ask permission of Your Majesty to complain at least a bit about all the years that I have suffered, attempting to establish that in the unknown Austral part there could be lands inhabited by people, and of how hard it is for me now to convince others that I have seen them, and that they exist, and how much they mean to me, having gone there and seen them on my own, and how worthy they are of being populated, and how convenient it is for the good of both not to be uncaring with them, nor to waste my life in vain, a life I also wish to invest in such a venture. Please, Your Majesty, allow me to say that such a loyal vassal to the King, who is a soldier of the truth and who has also been at its service, who offers you such great things and who has been so little taken into consideration and given such little help, so that he can only breathe, I do not need to utter such grievances and make such pernicious attempts, nor have I been affected by the memories of such painful words, for I am being called to God's tribunal to be held accountable. I would wish those who deserve so to be present, so that they can bear witness to my loyalty – without prejudice to Yourself – as well as to others to whom I proved my submission, my humility and my gratitude. It would not mean much, according to what is known, and to those others with whom I spoke little and plenty, and keep hurriedly silent.
In such events I harden myself up, as well as in others that with all justification I present myself, and for whom I apply and work as much as they are worth, and having given so much and asking for nothing, being unable to find – as much as I tried – whatever pleases or displeases you, to measure myself at your level, I do not know if someone like this has ever lived in the past or in the present. And this is true; it is neither a fable, nor a dream, nor does it overrate how much such level of patience and such perseverance are worth and deserve, having undergone such torment only for having wished to do good by force. Is it not an honest price – that of seeing so many expected glories for the principle of the common good – that costs less purgatory, for considering their lesser price, it seems to be twice as crazy, not being able to leave hell with so many false testimonies, so many reckless judgements, so much injustice, injury and uneasiness, in short, with as many tribulations as some men force upon me without having seen, or asked me, or attempted to become capable of, no matter how much I persist – being the present torment such an enormous stoppage – without letting me know about the state of such cause, or where the doubts and objections lie, so that I may satisfy them; and together with those who want to demolish me and to deprive me of the sweat of my brow in order to base their attempts – as well as those of others – without fearing the retribution that awaits them from the heavens, for there are only a few that fear what may come their way on earth.
Your Majesty, please grant me the licence I am beseeching, since time is running for many different reasons, and because I have not found anyone who wants to pursue such a deed, and also because I have become the target that so many and such diverse shooters have aimed and shot at, and all of them say that they have hit the mark, or when they barely think about it with what is left over to wage war unreasonably against us, and against me in particular without any consideration on whether I am hurt or not – honour, life and soul –without forgiving me for their whims, or whatever else. Nor do I know how to say how many lords I have bowed to and still bow to as a serf, or in any other capacity. Considering that I am a man of pious deeds, being such deeds so few and far between, and for that reason how well the title of Captain of Advantageous Work befits me, as well as that of enemy of myself because it was voluntarily that I wanted to subject myself to such travails, forced to ten years in galleys and stripped of my civil rights, without having found neither here nor there someone to protect me. Protect me, Your Majesty, and listen to my rightful complaints, for you are my King and Natural Lord, with the truth that so many times, in absence, and with such effort and risk I have defended, and aspired to the highest levels at your service. Thus I state that that there would be no person who would dare pass a death sentence against God's honour, and against the salvation of millions of souls and of other infinite good involved in this case that I argue for, and against Your Majesty’s becoming the protector of so much and perhaps of more Kingdoms and riches than Your Majesty is currently the lord of, with the fame and glory of finishing such high and Christian work, and against my part and my justice, both for what I have done and for what I intend to do.
To sum up, considering this cause were not what it is, as well as my pure love of you, will not concede me the licence to stop defending it against anything that opposes it as much as I can; leaving it as it is, and only aspiring to find myself free from men for all my earthly happiness, because it seems that the payment for such constancy on my part is to stone me, to cast the cause aside as well as my person, erase it from the memory of so many people, while I have it engraved on mine in big gilded letters. But I have asked and ask for justice, and of justice I must die, and that I would not say a single word in my benefit or in its benefit; I would rather be laughing at the whole world and its rewards, which are not for me, and crying for its confusion and its scourge, and proclaiming that I have escaped not only one but several deceptions that I have lived in so far, and I wish to make it known about me. May God defend such great cause and our enemies, those small men, who are not aware of why they are so, or who they are, all of whom I would like to see in my current plight, and ask them whether it is against all reason or justice, with the supreme authorities' permission, won by the truth, hard work, that I discovered the lands that discovered, and to aspire with all due justification to populate them, to convert their peoples, and to reap the benefits of what they sow, and to take from this land until their world ends.
Or if this is unworthy of its due price, such an honest deed, and want to work again, and work themselves to death for whatever I mentioned before, and for all my very wishes, that it will be worth to mention those that have been turned into actions, warning you as well that if what I have done does not justify what I demand, I want to be proved wrong, and that any wrongdoing on my part in any circumstance, in short, any small or big amount that I owe – including monies – let me receive four times the punishment, were there anyone to speak to who can boast of at least as much as I have done for their God, their King and their country. Or if they believe that they epitomise perfection and purity, or great self‐satisfaction, and are capable of pleasing all the men that they deal with, or govern, or if their truth is indirectly opposed, even more so if they can manage to be as strong as those who consider me strong, or if they are conceited enough to believe that they are far better than I am and can be, that it would be easier said than done; I give them what remains to be done as many times as they want it. They should understand that this will be at a lower price than I have paid and offered, and in that manner and in many others they will be able to show their fineness, and there will be no lack of writers, nor of great prizes for them in this life and in the afterlife, if they so aspire. And I also warn that for the time being, I cannot give up what I have done, nor will I keep to myself how well I can serve my King without pay.
It is an enormous crime that I have committed, and for that I pay dearly, and I have run and am running the greatest risks that in all honesty I am not afraid of, and that I have advised and I can now show all these witnesses of as proof of what I have endured in the Indies, and in many other places, and if not I will content myself with disclosing how I fare at this Court, where they will not even look at me, and this proves such a step. I only need to know how long will such cruelty be used against such a pious cause, and to such good will as mine, and considering what is worthwhile at the present time, or will be worthwhile in the future, may God be with both of us – He who knows how valuable this case is – and that I am neither made of bronze nor was born sanctified in order to endure so much suffering for no reason. I therefore ask, and since I will not be allowed to transport such great and rich cargoes, of so many divine and human merchandises, rightfully carrying their weight and unloading it at their own homes, without even asking me how heavy that weight is, nor how much it is worth, nor even to find someone who can say how heavy that weight is, so that we may divide it by three, and also into smaller parts.
I reply that immense is the bitterness produced by the toils, the discomforts, the property expenses, and by depriving oneself of one's own assets to the benefit of others', and in short, that wanting and knowing plenty about suffering is not for everybody, not even for those who tell me that they would not want to set foot in my labyrinths but try to save themselves, as if the salvation of many were to deprive them of the salvation they desire, being certain financial expense aid for higher levels of glory. This I say, speaking to those that understand me, and I ask them again: who are those who would take up this challenge, or whose turn is it to command my permission, or release me from my very many burdens, and to see that after having struggled against what is being said and what is being unsaid? Here I am in need of having to argue and to write as a great Theologian, Canonist and Philosopher, being only a mere sailor and soldier.
And I also ask, who are those who shall bear God's justice, so many souls, and so many assets that are lost each day in all those provinces, in whose name, and of its peoples. From the Empire to the centre shall I later submit a tight protest memorial, and speak so clearly that a yes or a no would immediately come my way, so that I will know what I am supposed to do with this Godly cause that I bear on my slim shoulders, with those many orphans left without a guardian or a defender, but I would like to remind you that my lack of opportunity is not just for any reason I know, because financial means are not lacking, being so much available for such minimal causes, even more so in Perú, where the journey will start. So many souls under the care of Your Majesty – both in the present and in the future – will lose their natural right to see and experience the joy of God for the rest of their eternity, not even if there were mistrust worthy of fear, for God can do as much as He wants, and God has discovered the lands, and Your Majesty leads them conveniently, and all and every hundred thousand commanders there would be, you can well sustain them from such a very small Spain. And I would also like to know, sir, the reason why I am not being informed on the state of this cause, so that I can attempt to request and ask, answer, reply and persist, until I receive some meagre help to spread the word of God: twelve Capuchin monks – a petition that cannot be denied, nor contradicted, nor conscientiously halted.
Above all, having done and said as much as has been noted down, and on such a great offer on such a great cause, with as many consequences as a thousand speeches would show, not including those that would not merit writing about, and every one of them lends itself to the defence of its pros and cons, and with more than a thousand strong reasons, I am not aware, sir, of what you will say, nor of the treatment I will receive, but it is all my consideration, loyalty and suffering that has been very necessary for this, and for all the worsening rest, I very humbly beg Your Majesty not to let me die of sadness in front of Your Majesty, to whom I have been and can still be a humble servant, or at least to prevent my career from coming to an end, considering how big a loss it would be for the cause. For Your Majesty and for me if everything comes to an end and Your Majesty allows me to leave this Court feeling so disdained and lost, without the honour that my fists brought in, advising that the height of faith is worthy of love, as well as a labourer deserves his pay, and that for me that pay would mean working my whole life in this very same cause that I love, because I know how much it is worth, and how much pain these delays inflict upon me, and for this reason dots become months, and days thousands of years.
For all of this I beg Your Majesty again and again, as much as I can, to incline Your ears and give all Your support to such a noble cause and to such a stubborn vassal, and to ensure that I would be dispatched – as I have requested so many times – with documents bearing Your Majesty's will clearly and strongly, in all its power, because this will be the means by which the name of their author will become known in such a great part of the world, and that their peoples may attain salvation. It is to be noted that in the fourteen years that I have been arguing for this cause, for seven years I have lacked ink, pens and paper to write my concepts, as well as bread, a warm fire and time to sleep, comforts to heal my ailments – in short, the means to provide for my immediate needs, big and small, as my history shows. Together with what I owe, who and how many persons have lent me money, I am adding this so that it will never be said that I made a living by miracle, having entered this Court without a single maravedí. I shall not continue now, but will briefly say that you can ask Ana Márquez, the owner of the inn where I stay, as well as the caretaker of San Felipe, and to the knowledge of the providence of God, to whom I leave everything.