- Historic Sites
Another eyewitness takes us on another voyage, three and a half centuries earlier—this one around the world …
October 1969 | Volume 20, Issue 6
Of the dead Christians and Indians cast into sea
On Wednesday the ninth of July we arrived at one of these islands, named Santiago, where we immediately sent the boat ashore to obtain provisions, under pretext and color of telling the Portuguese that our foremast had broken under the equinoctial line (although it had been at the Cape of Good Hope) and that, while we were refitting our ships, our captain-general with the other two ships had gone before to Spain. So with our merchandise and these good words we obtained two boatloads of rice. And we charged our men in the boat that, when they were ashore, they should ask what day it was. They were answered that to the Portuguese it was Thursday, at which they were much amazed, for to us it was Wednesday, and we knew not how we had fallen into error. For every day I, being always in health, had written down each day, without any intermission. But, as we were told since, there had been no mistake, for we had always made our voyage westward and had returned to the same place of departure as the sun, wherefore the long voyage had brought the gain of twenty-four hours, as is clearly seen.…
Our men arrived at Seville
On Saturday the sixth of September, one thousand five hundred and twenty-two, we entered the Bay of San Lucar, and we were only eighteen men, the most part sick, of the sixty remaining who had left Molucca, some of whom died of hunger, others deserted at the island of Timor, and others had been put to death for their crimes.
From the time we departed from that Bay until the present day we had sailed fourteen thousand four hundred and sixty leagues, and completed the circuit of the world from east to west.
On Monday the eighth of September we cast anchor near the Mole of Seville, and there we discharged all the artillery. And on Tuesday we all went, in our shirts and barefoot, and each with a torch in his hand, to visit the shrine of Santa Maria de la Victoria and that of Santa Maria de Antigua.…