Monday, 22 January 1565

Around ten in the morning, land was discovered which seemed to be at the turn northwest around ten leagues. Its coast seemed northeast southwest and at the south southwest there was a round headland across the sea and on top of it 2 or 3 cliffs with a flat crown; at the turn north, there was a ravine and on it a cliff a little bigger than the others, then there was a highland and from there the land was lower and looked like a galley on the high seas. And beyond the north there were low lands and high lands in some parts; and at the land and headland which seemed to be on the high seas, at the turn south emanated a plain, low and inhabited, 1/4 of a league long. And then there was an island at the turn south-southwest about a league away from the land protruding from the headland; and from the island to this land there was a reef surrounded by the sea, on which were small stones. And this island, as far as I could see was small, around 9 leagues away. Then after going two leagues, we saw 45 canoes sailing which looked like lateen boats on each of which there were 6 or 8 men; in some, 12 and others 12 or 13 and more. Each one told us to anchor in their land where they lived which was along the seashore. Tonight, we reached southwest of this small island and the flagship was able to anchor past midnight, between 3 and 4 in the morning. And the galleon San Juan and almiranta anchored later on a bay at the back of the islet. From this islet, to a point three leagues going north-northwest, south-southeast; at the part north-northwest, there was an islet about a quarter of a league which was all stone, and from this islet to the land there was a reef with big stones on top.

This same day, Tuesday, at dawn, with the flagship and the rest of the ships anchored, around 250 paraos or more came alongside to trade. They had plenty of coconuts and bananas, rice and fish and other produce of the land. The people of the armada bartered these with playing cards. Some soldiers tied a cord around their necks and hung kerchiefs of all colors from it. When the Indios saw these, they gave whatever they had for these fabrics. I saw a seaman put a cord around his neck and hang a cow’s horn from it and when the Indios saw this, they gave 6 or 7 coconuts for it. And when the Indios had this on hand, they did nothing but look at it and this gave everyone a big laugh. Others bartered with old shoes and did as the others and with this bartered for what was brought. These Indios said that they did not want anything but nails and knives. These Indios are such great shameless cheats that the rice they brought in baskets had sand or coconut shells under and a little rice on top that made it appear that the baskets were full. They are so shameless that they offered us their women and brought them on their canoes and asked us if we wanted them and this gave both them and the women a big laugh.

And they are such thieves that they left us without any buoys for our anchors, For, because of their greed for nails, they took all they could; many of them jumping into the water so shamelessly to get the nails of the rudder. This, I know, because on the galleon on which I was pilot, they robbed us of two handfuls of nails from the rudder. And they threatened us and got their slingshots and shot us with some pebbles and others got small lances, all of these which are the firearms they usually use.

They are very capable and strong people, some men, bearded, and their women pleasant looking though very immodest. This island is densely populated, all of the people living by the sea which is full of coconut trees. The land is high, unbroken, uneven and clear of woodland; and seems very fertile and productive. They have ginger. the canoes are narrow at the bottom and have their keel, and towards the top, they are wider and on one side they are 2 or 3 yards in length and a braza and a half in depth. And across the end there is a pole which serves as a counter-balance and so, having this, the Indios can go from one place to another without fear or worry. They have sails and long beams; the sails are of palm and well made; they sail like brigantines. And the counter-balance at the windward side moves because it has neither prow nor stern. Where the prow is usually located, sometimes they have the stern. Because the counterbalance moves with the direction of the wind so that they only have to unfurl or let go of the main sail and pull the other because the masthead falls over the prow. They are so swift that with the wind across the prow no galley nor any other kind of boat can overtake them.

We asked them by signs what they used to carve their canoes and they brought us adzes of stone and of oyster shell. And so they stopped bartering with the things they had accepted and accepted only nails and knives for their merchandise. I measured the sun o this island two or three times at 13 1/4. The Father Prior Fray Andres de Urdaneta had the declination of the sun taken at the meridian of Mexico with which I measured the sun at 13 2/5 degrees in this port. Before reaching the islet of stone at northwest, there is another bay in which the ship can anchor and get water. Beyond the islet of stone, at the turn north, there is a big bay and two islets full of woodland and then, at the turn northwest, there is a cliff which looks like the Cabo de San Vicente. Above this, there is a plain. All these above said bays are good anchorage spots with the land breeze which pervades in all of this land.

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