8th of September, 1522

Monday the 8th of September, we cast anchor near the mole of Seville, and discharged all the artillery.

Tuesday, we all went in shirts and barefoot, with a taper in our hands to visit the shrine of St. Maria of Victory, and of St. Maria de Antigua.

Then, leaving Seville, I went to Valladolid, where I presented to his Sacred Majesty Don Carlos, neither gold nor silver, but things much more precious in the eyes of so great a Sovereign. I presented to him among other things, a book written by my hand of all the things that had occurred day by day in our voyage. I departed thence as I was best able, and went to Portugal, and related to King John the things which I had seen. Returning through Spain, I came to France, where I presented a few things from the other hemisphere to Madam the Regent, mother of the most Christian King Don Francis.[283] Afterwards, I turned towards Italy, where I established for ever my abode, and devoted my leisure and vigils to the very illustrious and noble lord, Philip de Villiers Lisleadam, the very worthy grand master of Rhodes.

⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Chevalier,

⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠Anthoyne Pigaphete.


6th of September, 1522

At last, when it pleased Heaven, on Saturday the 6th of September of the year 1522, we entered the bay of San Lucar; and of sixty men who composed our crew when we left Maluco, we were reduced to only eighteen,[282]and these for the most part sick. Of the others, some died of hunger, some had run away at the island of Timor, and some had been condemned to death for their crimes.

From the day when we left this bay of San Lucar until our return thither, we reckoned that we had run more than fourteen thousand four hundred and sixty leagues, and we had completed going round the earth from East to West.


9th of July, 1522

Constrained by extreme necessity, we decided on touching at the Cape Verde Islands, and on Wednesday the 9th of July, we touched at one of those islands named St. James’s. Knowing that we were in an enemy’s country, and amongst suspicious persons, on sending the boat ashore to get provision of victuals, we charged the seamen to say to the Portuguese that we had sprung our foremast under the equinoctial line (although this misfortune had happened at the Cape of Good Hope), and that our ship was alone, because whilst we tried to repair it, our captain-general had gone with the other two ships to Spain. With these good words, and giving some of our merchandise in exchange, we obtained two boat-loads of rice.

In order to see whether we had kept an exact account of the days, we charged those who went ashore to ask what day of the week it was, and they were told by the Portuguese inhabitants of the island that it was Thursday, which was a great cause of wondering to us, since with us it was only Wednesday. We could not persuade ourselves that we were mistaken; and I was more surprised than the others, since having always been in good health, I had every day, without intermission, written down the day that was current. But we were afterwards advised that there was no error on our part, since as we had always sailed towards the west, following the course of the sun, and had returned to the same place, we must have gained twenty-four hours, as is clear to any one who reflects upon it. The boat, having returned for rice a second time to the shore, was detained, with thirteen men[281]who were in it. As we saw that, and, from the movement in certain caravels, suspected that they might wish to capture us and our ship, we at once set sail. We afterwards learned, some time after our return, that our boat and men had been arrested, because one of our men had discovered the deception, and said that the captain-general was dead, and that our ship was the only one remaining of Magellan’s fleet.


6th of May, 1522

At length, by the aid of God, on the 6th of May, we passed that terrible cape, but we were obliged to approach it within only five leagues distance, or else we should never have passed it. We then sailed towards the north-west for two whole months without ever taking rest; and in this short time we lost twenty-one men between Christians and Indians. We made then a curious observation on throwing them into the sea, that was that the Christians remained with the face turned to the sky, and the Indians with the face turned to the sea. If God had not granted us favourable weather, we should all have perished of hunger.


11th of February, 1522

Tuesday night (between it and Wednesday,) on the 11th of February of 1522, we left the island of Timor, and entered upon the great sea named Laut Chidol [280] and taking a west-south-west course, we left to the right and to the North, from fear of the Portuguese, the island of Zumatra, anciently named Taprobana; also Pegu, Bengala, Urizza, Chelim, where are the Malabars, subjects of the King of Narsinga: Calicut which is under the same king; Cambaya in which are the Guzeratis; Cananor, Goa, Armus, and all the other coast of India major.

In this kingdom dwell six classes of persons, that is to say: Nairs, Panicals, Franas, Pangelins, Macuas, and Poleas. The Nairs are the chiefs; the Panicals are the townspeople; these two classes live and converse together. The Franas collect the wine from the palm trees and the bananas. The Macuas are fishermen; and the Poleas sow and harvest the rice; these last always dwell in the fields, and never enter the city, and when it is desired to give them anything, it is placed on the ground and they take it. When they go along the roads they always cry out, po, po, po, that is take care of yourself; and we were told that a Nair who had been accidentally touched by a Polea, not to survive such a disgrace, had himself killed.

In order to double the Cape of Good Hope, we went as far as 42° South latitude, and we remained off that cape for nine weeks, with the sails struck on account of the Western and North-western gales which beat against our bows with fierce squalls. The Cape of Good Hope is in 34° 30′ South latitude, 1600 leagues distant from the Cape of Malacca, and it is the largest and most dangerous cape in the world.

Some of our men, and among them the sick, would have liked to land at a place belonging to the Portuguese called Mozambique, both because the ship made much water, and because of the great cold which we suffered; and much more because we had nothing but rice and water for food and drink, all the meat of which we had made provision having putrified, for the want of salt had not permitted us to salt it. But the greater number of us, prizing honour more than life itself, decided on attempting at any risk to return to Spain.


25th of January, 1522

Saturday the 25th of January, (1522), at 22 o’clock,[261] we left the island of Mallua; and the following day, having run five leagues to the south-south-east, we arrived at a large island called Timor. I went ashore alone to speak to the head man of a village named Amaban, about his providing us with victuals. He offered me buffaloes, pigs, and goats, but when it was a question of the goods which he wanted in exchange, we could not come to an agreement, because he asked a great deal, and we had got very little to give. Then as we were constrained by hunger, we took the measure of detaining on board the ship the chief of another village named Balibo, who had come there in good faith with a son of his; and we imposed upon him as a ransom for recovering his liberty, to give six buffaloes, ten pigs, and ten goats. He, being much afraid that we should kill him, quickly gave orders to have all this brought to us; and as there were only five goats and two pigs they gave us instead an additional buffalo. We then sent him ashore with his son, and he was well pleased when we not only left him free, but also gave him some linen, some Indian cloths of silk and cotton, some hatchets, some Indian knives, scissors, looking-glasses, and some of our knives.

The chief man, whom I went to speak to first, has only women in his service; all were naked like those of the neighbouring islands, and wear in their ears small gold rings with tufts of silk hanging from them; on their arms they wear many rings of gold and copper, which often cover them up to the elbow. The men are naked like the women, and wear attached to their necks round plates of gold, and on their heads reed combs ornamented with gold rings. Some of them, instead of gold rings, wore in their ears dried necks of gourds.

In this island there are buffaloes, pigs, and goats, as has been said; there are also fowls and parrots of various colours. There is also rice, bananas, ginger, sugar canes, oranges, lemons, beans and almonds.

We had approached that part of the island where there were some villages with their chiefs or head men. On the other side of the island are the dwellings of four kings, and their districts are named Oibich, Lichsana, Suai, and Cabanaza. Oibich is the largest place. We were told that in a mountain near Cabanaza, very much gold is found, and its inhabitants buy whatever they want with small pieces of gold. All the trade in sandal wood and wax, carried on by the people of Malacca and Java, is done here; and indeed, we found here a junk which had come from Lozon[262] to trade in sandal wood; for white sandal wood only grows in this country.

These people are Gentiles; we were told that when they go to cut sandal wood, the devil appears to them in various forms, and tells them that if they want anything they should ask him for it; but this apparition frightens them so much, that they are ill of it for some days.[263] The sandal wood is cut at a certain phase of the moon, and it is asserted that if cut at another time it would not be good. The merchandise most fitting for bartering here for sandal wood is red cloth, linen, hatchets, iron, and nails.

This island is entirely inhabited. It extends a long way from east to west, and little from north to south. Its south latitude is in 10 deg., and the longitude 174 deg. 30 min. from the line of demarcation.

In all these islands that we visited in this archipelago, the evil of Saint Job prevailed, and more here than in any other place, where they call it “for franki”, that is to say, Portuguese illness.[264]

We were told that at a day’s voyage, west-north-west from Timor, there was an island in which much cinnamon grows, called Ende;[265] its inhabitants are Gentiles, and have no king. Near this are many others forming a series of islands as far as Java Major, and the Cape of Malacca. The names of these islands are Ende, Tanabuton, Crenochile, Bimacore, Azanaran, Main, Zubava, Lombok, Chorum, and Java Major, which by the inhabitants is not called Java but Jaoa.

In this island of Java are the largest towns; the principal of them is Magepaher [266] the king of which, when he lived, was the greatest of all the kings of the neighbouring islands, and he was named Raja Patiunus Sunda. Much pepper grows there. The other towns are—Dahadama, Gagiamada, Minutarangam, Ciparafidain, Tuban, Cressi,[267] and Cirubaya.[268] At half a league from Java Major are the islands of Bali, called Java Minor, and Madura, these are of equal size.

They told us that in Java Major, it was the custom when one of the chief men died, to burn his body; and then his principal wife, adorned with garlands of flowers, has herself carried in a chair by four men throughout the town, with a tranquil and smiling countenance, whilst comforting her relations, who are afflicted because she is going to burn herself with the corpse of her husband, and encouraging them not to lament, saying to them, “I am going this evening to sup with my dear husband, and to sleep with him this night.” Afterwards, when close to the place of the pyre, she again turns towards the relations, and after again consoling them, casts herself into the fire and is burned. If she did not do this she would not be looked upon as an honourable woman, nor as a faithful wife.

Our old pilot related to us other extravagant things. He told us that the young men of Java …. and that in an island called Ocoloro, below Java Major, there are only women who become pregnant with the wind, and when they bring it forth, if the child is a male, they kill it, and if a female, they bring it up; and if any man visits their island, whenever they are able to kill him, they do so.

They also related to us that beyond Java Major, towards the north in the Gulf of China, which the ancients named Sinus Magnus, there is an enormous tree named Campanganghi,[269] in which dwell certain birds named Garuda,[270] so large that they take with their claws, and carry away flying, a buffalo, and even an elephant, to the place of the tree, which place is named Puzathaer. The fruit of this tree is called Buapanganghi, and is larger than a water melon. The Moors of Burné, whom we had with us in the ships, told as they had seen two of these birds, which had been sent to their king from the kingdom of Siam. No junk, or other vessel, can approach this tree within three or four leagues, on account of the great whirlpools which the water makes there. They related to us, moreover, how in a wonderful manner what is related of this tree became known, for a junk, having been carried there by the whirlpools, was broken up, and all the seamen perished, except a child who attached himself to a plank and was miraculously borne near the tree, upon which he mounted. There he placed himself under the wing of one of these birds, which was asleep, without its perceiving him, and next day the bird having taken flight carried him with it, and having seen a buffalo on the land, descended to take it; the child took advantage of the opportunity to come out from under its wing, and remained on the ground. In this manner the story of these birds and of the tree became known, and it was understood that those fruits which are frequently found in the sea came from that place.

We were told that there were in that kingdom, on the banks of the rivers, certain birds which feed on carrion, but which will not touch it unless another bird has first eaten its heart.

The Cape of Malacca is in 1 deg. 30 min. of S. latitude. To the east of that Cape are many cities and towns, of a few of which I will note the names—Singapola, which is at the Cape, Pahan, Kalantan, Patani, Bradlini, Benan, Lagon, Cheregigharan, Trombon, Joran, Ciu, Brabri, Banga, Iudia, Jandibum, Laun, Langonpifa. All these cities are constructed like ours, and are subject to the King of Siam who is named Siri Zacabedera, and who inhabits Iudia.

Beyond Siam is situated Camogia; its king is named Saret Zacabedera; next Chiempa, the king of which is named Raja Brahami Martu. There grows the rhubarb, and it is found in this manner: men go together in companies of twenty or twenty-five, to the woods, and at night ascend the trees, both to get out of the way of the lions, the elephants, and other wild beasts, and also to be able better to smell the odour of the rhubarb borne to them by the wind. In the morning they go to that quarter whence they have perceived that the odour comes, and seek for the rhubarb till they find it. This is the rotten wood of a large tree, which acquires its odour by putrefaction.[271] The best part of the tree is the root, but the trunk is also good, which is called Calama.

The kingdom of Cocchi[272] lies next, its sovereign is named Raja Seri Bummipala. After that follows Great China, the king of which is the greatest sovereign of the world, and is called Santoa raja. He has seventy crowned kings under his dependence; and some of these kings have ten or fifteen lesser kings dependent on them. The port of this kingdom is named Guantan,[273] and among the many cities of this empire, two are the most important, namely Nankin and Comlaha, where the king usually resides.

He has four of his principal ministers close to his palace, at the four sides looking to the four cardinal winds, that is, one to the west, one to the east, to the south, and to the north. Each of these gives audience to those that come from his quarter. All the kings and lords of India major and superior obey this king, and in token of their vassalage, each is obliged to have in the middle of the principal place of his city the marble figure of a certain animal named Chinga, an animal more valiant than the lion; the figure of this animal is also engraved on the king’s seal, and all who wish to enter his port must carry the same emblem in wax or ivory.

If any lord is disobedient to him, he is flayed, and his skin, dried in the sun, salted, and stuffed, is placed in an eminent part of the public place, with the head inclined and the hands on the head in the attitude of doing zongu, that is obeisance to the king.

He is never visible to anybody; and if he wishes to see his people, he is carried about the palace on a peacock most skilfully manufactured, and very richly adorned, with six ladies dressed exactly like himself, so that he cannot be distinguished from them. He afterwards passes into a richly-adorned figure of a serpent called Naga, which has a large glass in the breast, through which he and the ladies are seen, but it is not possible to distinguish which is the king. He marries his sisters in order that his blood should not mix with that of others.

His palace has seven walls round it, and in each circle there are daily ten thousand men on guard, who are changed every twelve hours at the sound of a bell. Each wall has its gate, with a guard at each gate. At the first stands a man with a great scourge in his hand, named Satuhoran[274] with Satubagan; at the second a dog called Satuhain;[275] at the third, a man with an iron mace, called Satuhoran with pocumbecin;[276] at the fourth, a man with a bow in his hand, called Satuhoran with anatpanan;[277] at the fifth, a man with a lance, called Satuhoran, with tumach;[278] at the sixth, a lion called Satuhorimau;[279] at the seventh, two white elephants called Gagiapute.

The palace contains seventy-nine halls, in which dwell only the ladies destined to serve the king; there are always torches burning there. It is not possible to go round the palace in less than a day. In the upper part of it are four halls where the ministers go to speak to the king: one is ornamented with metal, both the pavement and the walls; another is all of silver, another all of gold, and the other is set with pearls and precious stones. The gold and other valuable things which are brought as tribute to the king are placed in these rooms; and when they are there deposited, they say, Let this be for the honour and glory of our Santoa Raja. All these things and many others relating to this king, were narrated to us by a Moor, who said that he had seen them.

The Chinese are white, and are clothed; they eat on tables like us. They have crosses, but it is not known why they have them.

It is from China that musk comes; the animal which produces it is a kind of cat, like the civet cat; it eats nothing but a certain soft wood, slender as a finger, named chamaru. To extract the musk from this animal they attach a leech to it, and leave it till it is full of blood, and when they see that it is well filled, they crush it, and collect the blood in a plate, and put it in the sun for four or five days, moistening it every day with urine. In this way it becomes perfect musk. Whoever keeps one of these cats pays a tribute to the king. The grains of musk which come to Europe as musk, are only small pieces of kid’s flesh soaked in real musk, and not the blood, since though it can be made into grains, it easily evaporates. The cat which produces musk is called castor, and the leech is called Linta.

Continuing along the coast of China, many nations are met with, and they are these: the Chienchi, who inhabit the islands in which they fish for pearls, and where the cinnamon grows. The Lecchii inhabit the mainland: the entrance to their port is traversed by a large rock, for which reason all the junks and vessels which wish to enter must take down their masts. The king of this country is called Moni. He has on the mainland twenty kings under him, and he is subject to the King of China: his capital is Baranaci, and here is situated Oriental Cathay. Han is a high and cold island, where there is copper, silver, pearls, and silk; its king is named Raja Zotra. There is also Miliaula, the king of which is named Raja Quetischeniga, and Guio, the king of which is Raja Sudacali. These places are cold and on the mainland. Friagonba and Trianga are two islands which also produce copper, silver, pearls, and silk; their king is Raja Ruzon. Bassi is a low land on the continent. There come afterwards Sumbdit and Pradit, two islands very rich in gold, where the men wear a large ring of gold round the ancle. In the neighbouring mountains dwell people who kill their parents when they are old, so that they may cease from travail. All the people of these countries are Gentiles.


21st of December, 1521

Saturday, the 2lst December, day of St. Thomas the Apostle, the King of Tadore came to the ships and brought us the two pilots, whom we had already paid, to conduct us out of these islands. They said that the weather was then good for sailing at once, but, having to wait for the letters of our companions who remained behind, and who wished to write to Spain, we could not sail till midday. Then the ships took leave of one another by a mutual discharge of bombards. Our men accompanied us for some distance with their boat, and then with tears and embraces we separated. Juan Carvalho remained at Tadore with fifty-three of our men; we were forty-seven Europeans and thirteen Indians.

The king’s governor[248] came with us as far as the island of Mare: we had hardly arrived there when four prahus laden with wood came up, which in less than an hour we got on board. We then took the south-west course.

In all the above-mentioned islands of Maluco are to be found cloves, ginger, sagu, which is their bread made of wood, rice, cocoa-nuts, plantains, almonds larger than ours, sweet and bitter pomegranates, sugar-canes, oil of cocoa and of sesame, melons, cucumbers, pumpkins, comilicai,[249] which is a refreshing fruit the size of a water-melon, another fruit like a peach called guave, and other eatable vegetables. They also have goats and fowls, honey produced by bees not larger than ants, which make their hives in trunks of trees. There are also parrots of many kinds, and amongst them there are white ones called Catara, and red ones called Nori, which are the most sought after, not so much for the beauty of their plumage, as because they talk more clearly. One of these is sold for a bahar of cloves.

It is hardly fifty years since the Moors conquered Maluco and dwelt there. Before that, these islands were inhabited only by Gentiles, who did not care for the cloves. There are still some families of them who have taken refuge in the mountains, where the cloves grow.

The island of Tadore is in 0 deg. 27 min. North latitude, and 161 deg. west of the line of demarcation;[250] it is 9 deg. 30 min. distant from the first island of this archipelago, named Zamal, to the south-east and a quarter south. The island of Tarenate is in 0 deg. 40 min. of N. latitude. Mutir is exactly under the equinoctial line. Machian is in 0 deg. 15 min. S. latitude, and Bachian in 1 deg. of the same latitude. Tarenate, Tadore, Mutir, and Machian, are like four high and pointed mountains,[251] upon which the clove trees grow. Bachian is not visible from these four islands, but it is a larger island than any of those. Its clove mountain is not so high nor so pointed as those of the other islands, but it has a larger base.


(Book IV of the Milan Edition.)

Return from the Moluccas to Spain

Pursuing our voyage, after having taken in wood at the islet of Mare, we passed between the following islands:—Caioan, Laigoma, Sico, Giogi, Cafi, Laboan [252]Toliman, Titameti, Bachian, Latalata, Jabobi, Mata, and Batutiga. They told us that in the island of Cafi the people were small and dwarfed like the Pigmies; they have been subjected by force by the King of Tadore. We passed outside of Batutiga to the west, and we steered between west and south-west, and we discovered some islets to the south, on which account the pilots of Maluco said it would be better to cast anchor so as not to drift at night among many islets and shoals. We, therefore, altered our course to south-east, and went to an island situated in 2 deg. S. latitude, and fifty-three leagues from Maluco.

This island is named Sulach;[253] its inhabitants are Gentiles, and have not got a king. They eat human flesh; both men and women go naked, except a piece of the bark of a tree of two fingers’ breath before their natural parts. There are many other islands around here inhabited by anthropophagi. These are the names of some of them:—Silan, Noselao, Biga, Atulabaon, Leitimor, Tenetum, Gonda, Kailaruru, Mandan and Benaia.[254] We left to the east the islands named Lamatola and Tenetum.

Having run ten leagues from Sulach in the same direction, we went to a rather large island named Buru, in which we found plenty of victuals, such as pigs, goats, fowls, sugar-canes, cocoa-nuts, sagu, a certain food of theirs made of bananas called kanali,and chiacare, which here they call Nanga.[255]The chiacare are fruit like water-melons, but knotty on the outside; inside they have some small red fruit like plums, they have not got a stone in the middle, but instead of that have a certain pith like a white bean, but larger, they are tender to eat like chestnuts. We found here another fruit which externally is like a pine cone, and it is yellow, but white inside; on cutting, it is something like a pear, but much softer and better tasted. Here it is called comilicai. The inhabitants of this island are Gentiles, and have no king: they go naked like those of Sulach. The island of Buru is in 3 deg. 30 min. S. latitude, and seventy-five leagues from Maluco.

To the east of this island, at a distance of ten leagues, there is another one larger, and which borders on Giailolo, and it is named Ambon.[256] It is inhabited by Moors and Gentiles, but the former are on the sea shore, and the others in the interior; these are also anthropophagi. The products of this island are the same as those of Buru. Between Buru and Ambon, there are three islands surrounded by reefs named Vudia, Kailaruru and Benaia. To the south of Buru, at a distance of four leagues, is another small island named Ambalao.

At thirty-five leagues from Buru, south and a quarter south-west, is Bandan, with thirteen other islands. In six of them grow mace and nutmeg. Zoroboa is the largest of them, Chelicel, Saniananpi, Pulai, Puluru, and Rasoghin, the other six are Unuveru, Pulanbaracan, Lailaca, Mamica, Man, and Meut. In these islands nutmegs are not found, but only sagu, rice, cocoanuts, bananas, and other fruits, and they are near one another. The inhabitants of these are Moors, and have no king. Bandan is in 6 deg. of S. latitude, and 163 deg. 30 min. longitude from the line of demarcation. As this island was a little out of our course, we did not go to it.

Leaving the island of Buru in the direction south-west and a quarter west, about eight degrees of latitude,[257]we arrived at three other islands near each other named Zolot,[258] Nocemamor, and Galian. Whilst we sailed amidst these islands, a great storm fell upon us, for which we made a vow of a pilgrimage to our Lady della Guida. We put the ship before the storm and made for a rather high island, which afterwards we learned was named Mallua, but before we could reach it, we had to struggle much with the squalls of wind which descended from the mountains and with the currents. The inhabitants of this island are savages, and more beasts than men; they eat human flesh; they go naked, except the usual piece of bark to cover their natural parts. But when they go to fight they wear on the back, the breast, and the flanks, pieces of buffalo hide, ornamented with shells,[259] and boars’ tusks, and tails of goat skins, hanging before and behind. They wear the hair raised high up by means of cane combs with long teeth, which go through it. They wrap up their beards with leaves, and enclose them in cases or tubes of reed, a thing which seemed to us very ridiculous. In one word these were the ugliest men we had seen in these Indies. Both their bows and arrows are made of reeds, and they carry their food in bags made of leaves. When their women saw us they came towards us with their bows drawn, but when we had given them some presents we soon became friends.

We passed fifteen days in this island in caulking the ship whose sides had suffered. We found here goats, fowls, wax, cocoanuts, and pepper. For a pound of old iron they gave fifteen pounds of wax or of pepper.

There are two kinds of pepper here, the long and the round. The long pepper is like the flower of the hazel tree in winter; its plant is like ivy, and like it clings to trees; its leaves are like those of the mulberry tree; it is called luli. The round pepper grows like the other, but its fruit is in ears like Indian corn, and the grains are pulled off in the same manner; it is called lada. The fields here are full of pepper plants.

Here we took a man to conduct us to some island where we could find plenty of victuals.

The island of Mallua is in 8 deg. 30 min. S. latitude, and 169 deg. 40 min. longitude from the line of demarcation.

The old pilot from Maluco related to us, whilst sailing, that in this neighbourhood there was an island named Aruchete, the inhabitants of which, men and women, are not more than one cubit high, and they have ears as large and as long as themselves, so that when they lie down one serves them for a mattress, and with the other they cover themselves.[260] They are shorn and naked, their voices are shrill, and they run very swiftly. They dwell under ground, live on fish and a certain substance which grows between the bark and the wood of a tree, which is white and round like coriander comfits, and which is named ambulon. We would have gone there willingly, but the shoals and currents did not allow of it.


19th of December, 1521

He came with them early the next morning. These men dived under water with their hair loose, thinking that their hair, attracted by the water which penetrated into the ship, would indicate to them the leak, but though they remained more than an hour in the water, they did not find it. The king, seeing that there was no remedy for it, said with lamentation, “Who will go to Spain to take news of me to the king our lord?” We answered him that the “Victoria” would go there, and would sail at once to take advantage of the east winds, which had already commenced. The “Trinity,” meanwhile, would be refitted and would wait for the west winds and go to Darien, which is on the other side of the sea, in the country of Diucatan.[247] The king approved our thoughts, and said that he had in his service two hundred and twenty-five carpenters who would do all the work under the direction of our men, and that those who should remain there would be treated as his own children, and he said this with so much emotion that he moved us all to tears.

We, who were on board the “Victoria,” fearing that she might open, on account of the heavy cargo and the long voyage, lightened her by discharging sixty hundred weight of cloves, which we had carried to the house where the crew of the “Trinity” were lodged. Some of our own crew preferred to remain at Maluco rather than go with us to Spain, because they feared that the ship could not endure so long a voyage, and because, mindful of how much they had suffered, they feared to die of hunger in mid-ocean.


18th of December, 1521

Wednesday morning everything was prepared for our departure from Maluco. The Kings of Tadore, of Giailolo, and of Bachian, and a son of the King of Tarenate had come to accompany us as far as the island of Mare. The ship “Victoria” made sail and stood out a little, waiting for the ship “Trinity”; but she had much difficulty in getting up the anchor, and meanwhile the sailors perceived that she was leaking very much in the hold. Then the “Victoria” returned to anchor in her former position. They began to discharge the cargo of the “Trinity” to see if the leak could be stopped, for it was perceived that the water came in with force as through a pipe, but we were never able to find out at what part it came in. All that day and the next we did nothing else but work at the pumps, but without any advantage. Hearing this, the King of Tadore came at once to the ships, and occupied himself with us in searching for the leak. For this purpose he sent into the sea five of his men, who were accustomed to remain a long time under the water, and although they remained more than half-an-hour they could not find the fissure. As the water inside the ship continually increased, the king, who was as much affected by it as we were, and lamenting this misfortune, sent to the end of the island for three other men, more skilful than the first at remaining under water.