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fired Columbus, in terms the most respectful and flattering, to repair immediately to court, that from his own mouth they might receive a full detail of his extraordinary services and discoveries. During his journey to Barcelona, the people crowded from the adjacent country, following him every where with admiration and applaufe. His entrance into the city was conducted, by order of Ferdinand and Isabella, with pomp suitable to the great event, which added such diftinguished luftre to their reign. The people whom he brought along with him from the countries which he had discovered, marched first, and by their singular complexion, the wild peculiarity of their features, and uncouth finery, appeared like men of another species. Next to them were carried the ornaments of gold, fashioned by the rude art of the natives, the grains of gold found in the mountains, and dust of the same metal gathered in the rivers. After these, appeared the various commodities of the new discovered countries, together with their curious productions. Columbus himself closed the procession, and attracted the eyes of all the spectators, who gazed with admiration on the extraordinary man, whose fuperior fagacity and fortitude had conducted their countrymen, by a route concealed from pást ages, to the knowledge of a new world. Fer. dinand and Isabella received him clad in their royal robes, and feated apon a throne, under a magnificent canopy. When he approached they ftood up, and raising him as he kneeled to kiss their hands, commanded him to take his feat upon a chair prepared for him, and to give a circumftantial account of his voyage.
He delivered it with a gravity and composare no less suitable to the disposition of the Spanish nation, than to the dignity of the audience in which he fpoke, and with that modest fimplicity which characterises men of fuperior minds; who, fatisfied with having performed great actions, court not vain applause by an of ţentatious display of their exploits. When he had finished his narration, the king and queen, kneeling down, offered up folemn thanks to Almighty God for the discovery of those new regions, from which they expected so many advantages to flow in upon the kingdoms subject to their government. Every márk of honour that gratitude or admiration could suggest was conferred upon Columbus.
Letters patent were issued, confişming to him and to his heirs all the privileges contained in the capitulation concluded at Santa Fé; his family was ennobled; the king and queen, and, after their example, the courtiers, treated him, on every occafion, with all the ceremonious respect paid to persons of the highest rank. But what pleased him most, as it gratified his active mind, bent continually upon great objects, was, an order to equip, without delay, an armament of such force, as might enable him not only
to take poffeffion of the countries which he had already discovered, but to go in search of those more opulent regions, which he still confidently expected to find.
While preparations were making for this expedition, the fame of Columbus's successful voyage spread over Europe, and excited general attention. The multitude, ftruck with amazement when they heard that a new world had been found, could hardly believe an event so much above their conception. Men of science, capable of comprehending the nature, and of discerning the effects, of this great discovery, received the account of it with admiration and joy. They spoke of his voyage with rapture, and congratulated one another upon their felicity, in having lived in the period when, by this extraordinary event, the boundaries of human knowledge were so much extended, and such a new field of inquiry and observation opened, as would lead mankind to a perfect acquaintance with the structure and productions of the habitable globe. Various opinions and conjetures were formed concerning the new-found countries, and what division of the earth they belonged to. Columbus adhered tenaciously to his original opinion, that they should be reckoned a part of those vast regions in Asia, comprehended under the general name of India. This sentiment was confirmed by the observations which he made concerning the productions of the countries he had discovered. Gold was known to abound in India, and he had met with such promising samples of it in the islands which he visited, as led him to believe that rich mines of it might be found. Cot, ton, another production of the East Indies, was common there. The pimento of the islands he imagined to be a species of the East-Indian pepper. He mistook a root, somewhat resembling rhubarb, for that valuable drug, which was then supposed to be a plant peculiar to the East Indies. The birds brought home by him were adorned with the fame rich plumage which distinguishes those of India. The alligator of the one country appeared to be the same with the crocodile of the other. After weighing all these circumstances, not only the Spaniards, but the other nations of Europe, seem to have adopted the opinion of Columbus. The countries which he had discovered were considered as a part of India. In consequence of this notion, the name of Indies is given to them by Ferdinand and Isabella, in a ratification of their former agree. ment, which was granted to Columbus upon his return. Even after the error which gave rise to this opinion was detected, and the true position of the New World was ascertained, the name has remained, and the apo pellation of Weft Indies is given by all the people of Europe to the couns try, and that of Indians to its inhabitants,
The name by which Columbus diftinguished the countries which he had discovered was so inviting, the specimens of their riches and fer. tility, which he produced, were so considerable, and the reports of his companions, delivered frequently with the exaggeration natural to travellers, fo favourable, as to excite a wonderful spirit of enterprise among the Spaniards. Though little accustomed to naval expeditions, they were impatient to set out upon
Volunteers of every rank solicited to be employed. Allored by the inviting prospects which opened to their ambition and avarice, neither the length nor danger of the navigation intimidated them. Cautious as Ferdinand was, and averse to every thing new and adventurous, he seems to have catched the fame spirit with his subjects. Under its influence, preparations for a second expedition were carried on with a rapidity unusual in Spain, and to an extent that would be deemed not inconsiderable in the present age. The fleet consisted of seventeen ships, some of which were of good burden. It had on board fifteen hundred persons, among whom were many of noble families, who had served in honourable stations. The greater part of these being destined to remain in the country, were furnished with every thing requisite for conquest or settlement, with all kinds of European domestic animals, with such seeds and plants as were most likely to thrive in the climate of the West Indies, with utensils and instruments of every fort, and with such artificers as might be most useful in an infant colony.
But, formidable and well provided as this fleet was, Ferdinand and Ifabella did not rest their title to the possession of the newly-discovered countries upon its operations alone. The example of the Portuguese, as well as the superstition of the age, made it necessary to obtain from the Roman pontiff a grant of those territories which they wished to occupy. The Pope, as the vicar and representative of Jesus Christ, was supposed to have a right of dominion over all the kingdoms of the earth. Alexander VI. a pontiff infamous for every crime which disgraces humanity, filled the papal throne at that time. As he was born Ferdinand's subject, and very solicitous to secure the protection of Spain, in order to facilitate the execution of his ambitious schemes in favour of his own family, he was extremely willing to gratify the Spanish monarchs. By an act of liberality which cost him nothing, and that served to establish the jurisdiction and pretensions of the papal see, he granted in full right to Ferdinand and Isabella all the countries inhabited by Infidels, which they had discovered, or should discover; and, in virtue of that power which he derived from Jesus Christ, he conferred on the crown of Caftilo valt regions, to the poffeffion of which he himself was so far
from having any title, that he was unacquainted with their situation, and ignorant even of their existence. As it was necessary to prevent this grant from interfering with that formerly made to the crown of Portugal, he appointed that a line, supposed to be drawn from pole to pole, a hundred leagues to the westward of the Azores, should serve as the limit between them; and, in the plenitude of his power, bestowed all to the east of this imaginary line upon the Portuguese, and all to the west of it upon the Spaniards. Zeal for propagating the Christian faith was the confideration employed by Ferdinand in foliciting this bull, and is mentioned by Alexander as his chief motive for issuing it, In order to manifest some concern for this laudable object, several friars, under the direction of Father Boyl, a Catalonian monk of great reputation, as apoftolical vicar, were appointed to accompany Columbus, and to devote themselves to the instruction of the natives. The Indians whom Columbus had brought along with him, having received some tincture of Chriftian knowledge, were baptized with much folemnity, the king himself, the prince his son, and the chief persons of his court, standing as their godfathers. Those first fruits of the New World have not been followed by such an increase as pious men wilhed, and had reason to expect.
Ferdinand and Isabella having thus acquired a title, which was then deemed completely valid, to extend their discoveries, and to establikk their dominion over such a considerable portion of the globe, nothing now retarded the departure of the fleet. Columbus was extremely impatient to revisit the colony which he had left, and to pursue that career of glory upon which he had entered. He fet sail from the bay of Cadiz on the twenty-fifth of September, and touching again at the island of Gomera, he steered farther towards the south than in his former voyage. By holding this course, he enjoyed more steadily the benefit of the regular winds, which reign within the tropics, and was carried towards a large cluster of islands, situated considerably to the east of those which he had already discovered. On the twenty-fixth day, Nov. 2, after his departure from Gomera, he made land. It was one of the Caribbee or Leeward islands, to which he gave
the name of Deseada, on account of the impatience of his crew to discover some part of the New World. After this he visited successively Dominica, Marigalante, Antigua, San Juan de Puerto Rico, and several other islands, scattered in his way as he advanced towards the north-west, All these he found to be inhabited by that fierce race of people whom Guacanahari had painted in such frightful colours. His descriptions appeared not to have been exaggerated. The Spaniards never at
tempted to land without meeting with such a reception, as discovered the martial and daring spirit of the natives; and in their habitations were found relics of those horrid feasts which they had made upon the bodies of their enemies taken in war.
But as Columbus was eager to know the state of the colony which he had planted, and to supply it with the necessaries of which he supposed it to be in want, he made no stay in any of those illands, and proceeded directly to Hispaniola. When he arrived off Navidad, the station in which he had left the thirty-eight men under the command of Arada, he was astonished that none of them appeared, and expected every moment to see them running with transports of joy to welcome their countrymen. Full of solicitude about their safety, and foreboding in his mind what had befallen them, he rowed instantly to land. All the natives from whom he might have received information had fled. But the fort which he had built was entirely demolished, and the tattered garments, the broken arms and utensils scattered about it, left no room to doubt concerning the unhappy fate of the garrison. While the Spaniards were shedding tears over those fad memorials of their fellowcitizens, a brother of the cazique Guacanahari arrived. From him Columbus received a particular detail of what had happened after his departure from the island. The familiar intercourse of the Indians with the Spaniards tended gradually to diminish the superstitious veneration with which their first appearance had inspired that simple people. By their own indiscretion and ill conduct, the Spaniards speedily effaced those favourable impressions, and soon convinced the natives, that they had all the wants, and weaknefies, and paflions of men. As foon as the powerful reftraint which the presence and authority of Columbus imposed was withdrawn, the garrison threw off all regard for the oficer whom he had invested with command. Regardless of the prudent inftructions which he had given them, every man became independent, and gratified his desires without controul. The gold, the women, the provisions of the natives, were all the prey of those licentious oppressors. They roamed in small parties over the island, extending their rapacity and insolence to every corner of it. Gentle and timid as the people were, those unprovoked injuries at length exhausted their patience, and rouzed their courage.
The cazique of Cibao, whose country the Spaniards chiefly infested on account of the gold which it contained, furprised and cut off several of them, while they itraggled in as perfect security as if their conduct had been altogether inoffensive. He then assembled his subjects, and surrounding the fort, fet it on fire. Some of the Spaniards were killed in defending it, the rest perished in attenpting