sábado, 7 de febrero de 2009





I. A Guipuzcoan of the XVIth Century
II. The Testament of Adam
III. The Expedition of Loaysa, Antecedents
IV. The Expedition of Loaysa, The Voyage. Baptism of the Sea
V. The Expedition of Loaysa, The Battle of the Moluccas
VI. From Carlos I to Felipe II
VII. The Return Voyage, Antecedents and Preparations
VIII. The Return Voyage, It is learned that the outward trip can
be completed in a short time
IX. The Return Voyage, The return voyage can be done in a wagon.
X. The Last Voyage
XI. The Manila Galleon
Document No. 1, Narration on the Expedition of Loaysa
Document No. 2, Report for Viceroy Velasco
Document No. 3, Report regarding equipment and provisions needed for the voyage
Document No. 4, About the navigation that has to be undertaken
Document No. 5, Declaration of Urdaneta regarding sovereignty over the Moluccas

[page 7]

This book retrieves the historical memoir of a little known personage: Andrés de Urdaneta. It takes us back 500 years and his story is the history of the world and the people of the XVIth century.

Andrés de Urdaneta, seaman , astronomer and humanist, is the discoverer of the Return Voyage, the return route from the Philippines to America. It was he who proved that the world could be navigated in two directions.

But his life, in spite of the fact that we do not have much data concerning this, is inspiring not only because of his scientific contributions. Urdaneta is astonishing for his simplicity, for his spirituality, for his eagerness to learn. Definitely, he opened the gates to commercial globalization, and Urdaneta’s interest in the world transcends mere mercantile motives,

One of the objectives of this book and of the events of the Vth centenary of the birth of Andrés de Urdaneta, is to gain recognition of his scientific and diplomatic achievements. They are amazing, although his human dimension is no less so. In him, we observe the same sentiments and anxieties many of us can identify with 500 years after. Because of his attitude in welcoming his native daughter, his insistence on respect for the life and culture of the natives of the lands where he stepped… We shall relate the scientific aspect to an absolutely contemporary concept: that of globalization. At the same time, we will be able to recognize Urdaneta as a person who respects the sentiments and the identity of others.

Andrés de Urdaneta could be the superhero of any fictional book or motion picture. We can admire him for this, and forget about him shortly after. But he is a real personage. This is why he inspires and touches us as only a true person can. And because of this, we will remember him in the future.

José Miguel Santamaría Ezeiza
Ordiziako Alkatea


Ordizia, Gipuzkoa, Castilla, Sevilla, Portugal, México, Filipinas... Through the pages of this new work, José Ramón de Miguel Bosch once again gives us the opportunity to know a little more about the history of those places, so near and far at the same time, through the study of the life and works of one of the most outstanding navigators of the XVIth century, Andrés de Urdaneta.

Until very recently, Andrés de Urdaneta was only one more of the numerous Guipuzcoans who participated in the adventure of overseas discoveries, aside from emphasizing his ecclesiastic position as an Augustinian friar, and his evangelical work in the Philippine Islands over and above his importance as a scientist. The last works completed designate this Ordiziarrian to a preeminent place in the history of the world as the discoverer of the Return Voyage or the return route from Asia to America through the Pacific Ocean, which up to that time was still unknown.

Indeed, José Ramón de Miguel, in his capacity as technician and specialist in marine matters, as a captain in the merchant marine, was the one who had been able to justly measure the importance and the difficulty involved in the discovery that Andrés de Urdaneta had accomplished in 1565, with the opening of the Pacific as the return route from the Philippines up to the territories then known as Nueva España. De Miguel must be publicly acknowledged for the part he is playing in gaining [p.10] international recognition for Urdaneta as a navigator, sea man, astronomer and cosmographer, through the sponsorship of a series of cultural, academic, instructional, and athletic activities directed by the Government of Ordizia (birthplace of Urdaneta), among which is the publication of this new study.

In this work, José Ramón de Miguel accomplishes much more than a re-edition of his first monographic book about Andrés de Urdaneta published in the year 2002. On this occasion, following the same chronological-biographical reasoning, he goes deeper into the questions that had major relevance and repercussions on the life of the navigator from Ordizia. Moreover, he does not forget to present a magnificent scene of the political, economic, and social context of the epoch of Carlos I and Felipe II during which Urdaneta lived, in Castile as well as in America.

The sources utilized in the development of this study, aside from an ample range of monographic works about Urdaneta from local, national and international sources, the cosmography of the modern epoch, the arrival of the Europeans in the Philippines and the maritime history of Carlos I and Felipe II, are archival in nature. The said original documents have been located after painstaking research in the Archivo General de Indias (Sevilla), the Biblioteca de Palacio (Madrid), Archivo Historico de Loyola or the Biblioteca Nacional de Francia (París), among others.

In addition, José Ramón de Miguel has recovered a considerable part of the interesting reports that Andrés de Urdaneta sent first to Carlos I and later to Felipe II, studying them with the eyes and comprehension of an expert in the science of navigation. In the reports, Urdaneta presented in detail the routes he had followed to reach the Moluccas Islands and the Philippines, as well as the route of the important return voyage.

In this sense, if there is anything that is emphasized in this work of De Miguel about Andrés de Urdaneta, it is the advanced and complex scientific-technical knowledge that the man from Ordizierra continued acquiring throughout his life and which allowed him to successfully complete the difficult return voyage to Nueva España via the Pacific. His participation since 1525 in the expedition to the archipelago of the Moluccas led by García Jofre de Loaysa, in which [p.11] Juan Sebastián Elcano was also a part of, was for the young Urdaneta an important apprenticeship in the nautical arts and in gaining knowledge on the currents of the sea and the winds in the area of Southeast Asia, where he remained for a period of almost 10 years. On the other hand, his interest in learning the language and customs of the natives, in describing the places reached by the expeditionists, is highly illustrative of his gifts of observation, the intellectual and anthropological eagerness and curiosity of the subject of this biography.

José Ramón de Miguel very successfully reminds us that what had lead Carlos I and Felipe II to promote these voyages to the distant and unknown Asiatic continent was the desire to find the source of spices and the control of its profitable trade. The author also stresses the fact that these Castillian expeditions came into direct collision with the existence of another maritime power in the zone, the kingdom of Portugal, with whom they had continuous conflicts during the XVth century and a good part of the XVIth century. These political tensions were partially solved in theory by the different international treaties between Castilla and Portugal, which are detailed in the study, but in practice these conflicts generated actual conflicts and direct confrontations on Asiatic soil, as related by Urdaneta himself in his reports.

Within this international context, Felipe II announced to the officers of the expedition in 1565, among whom of course were Legazpi and Urdaneta, that the [p.12] final destination of the voyage was the Philippine Islands and the principal objective was the return voyage from there to Nueva España, knowing fully well that these islands were clearly within the territory which was under the dominion of Portugal, according to the Treaty of Zaragoza. The concealment, at the beginning, of the destination from the other priests, soldiers and sea men who made up the expedition, and the subsequent affirmation that the primary objective of the expedition was to evangelize the natives of the Philippines, were some of the measures that the royal power employed to consolidate its presence in said islands.

In the same sense, José Ramón de Miguel details the diverse reports that the different cosmographers submitted to Felipe II wherein they consciously misrepresented their empirical data to conform with the data they were expected to present, which determined that the Islas Filipinas were within the Castillian zone of influence. De Miguel presents a detailed critical evaluation of these reports contributed by the experts, from a technical point of view.

In the same way, the author expounds with great clarity on the technical details of the voyage of Legazpi and Urdaneta to the Philippines, and the Return Voyage to Nueva España, the fundamental reason that had prompted Felipe II to promote this expedition, after the previous failed efforts to return via the east route. It results in a great interest to gauge the extensive knowledge that Urdaneta had acquired on the seasonal changes of the monsoons, the appraisal that De Miguel carries out on the three different routes to reach the Philippines that Urdaneta presented, in relation to the date of departure from Nueva España.

But Urdaneta’s most important discovery was the completion of the return voyage to the east through the Pacific. De Miguel reconstructs the route of the Return Voyage in detail and concludes without a doubt that Urdaneta’s extensive scientific knowledge in the final years of his life allowed him to open the maritime route back to Mexico with an apparent and extraordinary simplicity and ease, knowing at every moment the latitude, and particularly, the longitude of their location.

The subsequent consequences of the opening of the Pacific route between Nuevo México and the Philippines to commerce which are defined not only by the implantation of the Manila galleon but also by the fruitful [p.13] social and cultural interchange between the different countries, are also noted at the end of the work. Undoubtedly, Andrés de Urdaneta opened a path in the Pacific which permitted a greater interrelation between the inhabitants of Asia and America as well as with the Europeans who in the beginning consisted of the Basques, Castillians, Andalucians, Portuguese… The work of José Ramón de Miguel appraises the discoveries and findings of those promoters of globalization not only economically, but also in the socio-cultural milieu in which we continue to be immersed.

Doctor in History – University of Cantabria

Ordizia, December 2007

[page 15]


Andres de Urdaneta was born at the end of 1507 or the beginning of 1508 in Villafranca de Guipuzcoa that was founded by Alfonso X the Wise, in 1256, <>. To the original walled villa, whose urban structure is still recognizable in the framework of the present Ordizia, were added on 8 April 1399 almost all the settings and places of Guipuzcoan lower Goierri, threatening in aspect because of the bands of major kinsmen. One of them, the lord of Lazcano, head of the oñacino band, established his encampments in the middle of the valley and counted on a very powerful network of family relationships, which lasted until the final crisis of 1456-57 between factions and villas. The Villafranca of Urdaneta encompassed almost all the river basin of Oria, from the villa of Segura and the territory of Areria, up to the dominions of Tolosa.

One the places that were added to Villafranca in 1399 was Legorreta, where one of the various sites found in Guipuzcoa respond to the place-name Urdaneta. Situated in the middle of the northeast slope of the Bilkoin mountain, to the south of Oria, its location is undeniable evidence of the existence of a vocation for livestock and forestry. Among the 20 residents of Legorreta who ratify the [page16] the deed of aggregation to Villafranca, together with the representatives of the rest of the principal sites of Legorreta (Oriar, Garikano, Egino, Eginobarrena, Mukurullo, Beretesagasti…) appears one Ochoa de Urdaneta, who in all probability was the owner of the site during the transition period between the XIVth and XVth century[1].

It is not possible, the way things are now, to establish the indubitable relationship between this Ochoa de Urdaneta and Juan Ochoa de Urdaneta, father of the navigator, but a probable hypothesis may be drawn. At the beginning of the XVIth century, the presence of the surname Urdaneta is documented in Ordizia as well as in Tolosa, but it is not feasible to categorically affirm that all of them pertain to the site of Legorreta (since, aside from the then important village of Aia which is adjacent to Elkano, a small village of Aldaba, Tolosa has the same name, and it is difficult to ascertain the historical date).

A tradition which is not documented, but which is firmly established in Ordizia and is commemorated in a plaque recently installed in the place, situates the house where Andres de Urdaneta was born as being on a lot in Oianguren, close to the villa, on a hill south of Oria. Without brushing this aside, it does not seem probable. A century after the birth of the navigator, Isasti provides a brief description of the existence in Villafranca of a house <>[2], different from the two in Oianguren, which is very likely to be found within the area of the villa. This is more consistent with what we know, which is also not much, about the biography of the father of Andres.

In any case, it is important to take into account the great fire that razed the town at the beginning of 1512, which would lead to the privilege issued by Reina Juana of holding a weekly market to assist in the reconstruction of the town and which would determine the socio-economic future of Villafranca up to the period of industrialization.

Juan Ochoa de Urdaneta, the father of Andres, was indeed the regular mayor of the town in 1511. The gaps in documentation, attributable in part to the fire, prevent us from knowing whether he held this same annual position some time in the past or in the future. Despite the scarcity of existing data, it is possible to surmise that he was an important personality in the locality, a member of the then powerful commercial, bureaucratic and metallurgic bourgeoisie of Guipúzcoa, which at that time enjoyed an unimpeded [page 17] access to the Spanish monarchs, through the royal secretariat and the yeomen, among whom there was always an Ordizian during that period.

In January of 1528, Juan Ochoa de Urdaneta and Juan de Isasaga, both residents of Villafranca, settled their accounts before the clerk of court of the same town, Garcia de Isasaga, on their guardianship of Juan López de Amézqueta, lord of the houses of Amézqueta, Yarza and Alzaga[3]. Upon the death of his father Martín Pérez de Amézqueta, the minor became the owner of one of the most important patrimonies of Guipúzcoa that increased in size notably because of his marriage to Magdalena de Loyola, niece of the future Saint Ignatius and heiress of Martin, brother of the saint.

Aside from establishing a curious biographical link between the two most famous Guipuzcoanos in history, this fact proves the close relationship that the father of Urdaneta maintained with his neighbors, the Isasagas, a family that was the prototype of the Guipuzcoan bureaucratic bourgeoisie, that during several generations continued to retain its important position in the royal secretariat while multiplying its interests and properties, particularly in Goierri. A result of this close relationship was the marriage of Ochoa, the older brother of Andrés, to an Isasaga.

The biographers of A. de Urdaneta are almost unanimous when it comes to connecting his mother, Gracia de Cerain, to the Oñacino lineage with that surname. As a result, her birthplace could be what is known at present as Jauregi, a manorial house-tower that was lopped off by order of Enrique/Henry IV who ruled the area of the present town of Zerain. No conclusive data is known about this, although it may be considered as probable. However, some documents give reason to consider that the site of Zabalegi could have been part of Zerain itself.

In any case, it is very probable that Gracia de Cerain could have been closely related to the powerful ironworks sector of the upper river basins of Oria and Urola. The kinship that existed between Legazpi and Urdaneta, beyond friendship and a common undertaking, or the fact that he mentions that Andres de Mirandaola (who belongs to the known Legazpi ironworks) is his nephew, according to Velasco, turns out to be more in keeping with the branching out of the lineage toward the maternal rather than the paternal side.

[p.18] The name Andres, which is so common nowadays, was not so in Guipuzcoa in the XVIth century and, unlike the countries of northern Europe, it had no special nautical connotations, but metallurgical instead. It was a very rare proper name in the northeast of the province, and more common in the east and in the south, in consonance with the presence of churches and monasteries consecrated to the saint (the patron saint of Ormaiztegi and Eibar; the ancient parish church of Segura; the monasteries in Beasain, Eskoriatza, Oñati and Soraluze).

We know practically nothing about his education, even the place where he grew up, although it can be deduced that he must have been quite conscientious, especially in the field of the exact sciences. When he goes abroad in 1525 at the age of 17, Urdaneta is already a learned person, who signs as witness in various important documents, and starting from a certain period, he would take on the tasks of a scrivener in the expedition of Loaysa, among many other duties. On his return, the manuscripts of his reports show a careful penmanship and a dignified style of great fluidity, not usual in many professionals of the pen of the time,

His writings also show a person of great intelligence who was very reserved regarding his privacy; with a great gift for diplomacy, which he was called upon to exercise on not a few occasions, and a capacity for leadership; and a religiosity that was always present but very restrained in its external manifestations, even in his subsequent writings after he joined the order of Saint Augustine.

There can be no doubt that Andres de Urdaneta was extremely bilingual. To put it simply, it could be said that he writes in Castillan what he thinks in the Basque language eusquero/euskara. His Castillan is a romance with strong Gasconian and Galician-Portuguese undertones, particularly when it concerns nautical terminology. In general, it is difficult to precisely understand without resorting to euskara, on the basis of which one can translate, often through authentic copies, through syntax construction, expressions, epigrams, etc. All these aid in converting some of his passages into difficult but intelligible phrases without an exercise in philological exegesis.

It should be added that, according to allegations, he succeeded in mastering Malay and some other languages of Southeast Asia (that of Tidor, Ternate, Chamorro, etc.), demonstrating a special aptitude for the learning of these languages. [page 19] In this regard, Urdaneta repeatedly emphasized the enormous importance of the language factor at the time when plans were being made for their incursion into those remote territories.

During his stay in the Moluccas between 1527 and 1535, Andrés de Urdaneta had a daughter with one native woman. We know of her existence through Urdaneta himself who mentions leaving the girl in Lisbon on his return in 1536. We do not know the exact date of the girl’s birth but based on Urdaneta’s own account, she must have been born around 1530.

It is very likely that Urdaneta fetched his daughter on his return to Lisbon in 1538 and when he left for Nueva España in 1539, he left her in the care of his family in Ordizia, since his older brother Ochoa de Urdaneta, who was married to Gracia de Isasaga, would later state in his testament: “Furthermore, I order that Gracia de Urdaneta, my niece, daughter of Andrés de Urdaneta, be given twenty ducats for her services to me”[4].

Gracia de Urdaneta is probably the person with that name who is mentioned as the mother with eight children, five male and three female, baptized in the Ordizian parish church between 1554 and 1556, the fruit of her union with Lope de Ayçaga; two of her sons were given the name Andrés, while the other two were baptized with the name Lope, so it can be assumed that the first ones died prematurely. The names of the rest (Mari Ochoa, Gracia, Joanes, Maria) also relate to the family’s onomastic tradition. The lack of a collection of registry records prevents us from learning more concerning the descendants of Urdaneta. In any case, it can be emphasized that the date of his religious profession was very close to the date of the marriage of Gracia de Urdaneta to Lope de Ayçaga.

The political and economic milieu of his childhood and youth must have been shaped by the special convergence of these factors which existed in Guipúzcoa between 1512 and 1525, arising from the military campaigns of the Castillian conquest of Navarra and the subsequent attempts of the house of Albret to recover their lost realm. The provisioning of the Spanish troops stationed in Navarra was mainly undertaken through the ports and channels of Guipúzcoa and created a relative economic boom, most notably in the sector of freightage, [p.20] naval construction, metal manufacture and land transport, but also more importantly in the primary sector.

After this stage of convergence passed, capital cities and men reset their sights on the sea, although they knew little about the problems of the sea. The focus was on two principal directions: the recent discovery of the West Indies and the spice trade{Especiería}; and the sea of the codfish, Terranova. Apparently, the Urdaneta family was a participant and direct beneficiary of this trend toward expansion at the beginning of the XVIth century, and the young Andrés became one of the principal protagonists, although this took place in the shadow of the succeeding period.

His writings reveal the sharp eye for trading and economics of a person used to appraising, assaying and evaluating products and merchandise, in contrast to almost all of his Castillian contemporaries who are more inclined to look at any foreign land as a territory to be conquered and a source of precious metals. His colonial and commercial perspective is defined more along the line of the Portuguese colonial enterprises that preceded him and those of the Dutch that came after him, than on the model of imperial conquest personified by men like Cortés, Pizarro, etc.

It is economics that moves the world. Andrés de Urdaneta understood this as very few men did and before hardly anyone else did at the dawn of Modernity. The world economy is indebted to him for having discovered and established/put in place the operation that would later become the principal commercial route of our present global world.

[page 23]


At the start of the XV century, the two most important maritime powers of Western Europe at that time, Castile and Portugal, in the midst of commercial and political expansion, clash in the Atlantic over fishing rights and territories, such as domination over the islands of the Azores, Canaries, Madeira and Cabo Verde, islands which the mariners/navies of both nations were discovering, conquering and colonizing.

Since 1433, the Portuguese on repeated occasions seek the arbitration of the Papacy, in its role of ultima ratio in disputes between Christian monarchs. But Castilla, who assumes that the mediation will greatly limit its aspirations, does not accept the Papal bulls, for the reason that their objectives are not practical. In 1455, Pope Nicolas V, in his bull Romanus Pontifex, grants to Portugal the exclusive right to colonize and evangelize the territories south of Cape Bojador, thus avoiding the still doubtful assignation of the Canaries. This arrangement is confirmed by Callixtus III in 1456 in his bull Inter Caetera[5], which will give rise to the emergence of Portugal as an empire.

The coexistence between the maritime expansion impelled by the monarchs of the house of Avis in Portugal and Castilla of the Trastamara, which was embroiled in civil disputes, was not especially contentious. But with the ascension [page 24] to power of Isabel and Ferdinand in Castile in 1574 and the end of the civil wars, the clashes between the two powers become more frequent and intense. This makes it necessary for a treaty to be drawn up to establish order in the sphere of navigation which is in the full process of development because of the generalization of new techniques (such as the stern-mounted rudder, the caravel, etc.) and new scientific discoveries (many of them inherited from the Islamic world).

Thus the Treaty of Alcaçovas-Toledo is drawn up and signed in 1480, which grants to Portugal the rights to <>. This will be the first of a long series of agreements through which, in a civilized manner, they would endeavor to divide the world into two areas of influence, with the succeeding popes acting as mediators.

However, on the 26th of September 1493, Pope Alexander VI issues two new bulls, the Eximiae Devotionis and the Dudum Siquidem that conceded the Indies to the Catholic kings if “their subjects would reach the eastern regions and find islands or continents that could have been or were [part of] India” expanding the area granted by the earlier bulls to “all and each one of the islands and continents discovered and to be discovered that are, or that appear to be to those who sail or proceed toward the west and even toward the south, in the western as well as the eastern regions and exist in the Indies…”. In this way, Alexander VI bestowed the East Indies to the first who would reach it, leaving the way open for Spanish navigation, thus annulling the monopoly to the discovery and conquest of this area granted to Portugal by the previous popes, particularly Nicolas V in his Romanus Pontifex.[6]

So then the Dudum Siquidem represented a great triumph for the Spanish kings, since after the voyage of Christopher Columbus, it was assumed that the Indies had been discovered.

It stands to reason that Juan II of Portugal furiously protested that the last bull seriously infringed on the treaty of Alcaçovas-Toledo. After a frenetic flurry of negotiations mixed with threats, the Catholic Kings conceded a bit and on 7 June 1494, the treaty of Tordesillas was signed. This treaty established a demarcation line 370 leagues west of Cabo Verde, reserving the eastern hemisphere for Portugal and the west for Castile, who could only pass through the Portuguese sphere and cross the boundary line to gain access to her own sphere.

[p.25] What is noticeable about this treaty is that its clauses are unable to definitely determine the boundaries of both hemispheres. The treaty states, in a broad outline, that the dividing line will be drawn between the two poles, 370 leagues from the archipelago of Cabo Verde.

In the first place, it does not clearly establish the starting point from which to count these leagues, since Cabo Verde has a difference in longitude between its extreme west and east of 2 degrees and 42 minutes. Neither does it state the equivalent of a league, when in that epoch, the measurement used was between 16-2/3 and 18 leagues per degree.

Francis I of France, who was born exactly on that year, would sarcastically call this treaty, which he never accepted, the testament of Adam. And he probably had reason to do so, because on 13 January 1750, when the Treaty of Madrid abolishing the demarcation line was signed by Portugal and Spain, it became apparent that the demarcation line had never actually been defined.

For its beneficiaries, the first major problem appeared when the time came to set the antemeridian, that is to say, the demarcation line plus 180º, since this would determine their respective possessions in Asia. What is now a matter of simply looking at a current map, at the beginning of the XVI century, was then an enormous challenge due to the problem of longitude, which would not be satisfactorily resolved until three centuries later.

Briefly stated, the problem was based on the fact that, while it was easy to determine the latitude (through the height of the sun, or the Polar star, etc.); and the measurements were already very exact in the XVIth century (although a great deal depended on the skill of the mariner or astronomer), it was very difficult to fix the longitude. The method that would finally solve this problem, which was through the use of precision watches, was very distant from the mere possibilities provided by the use of the hour-glass and the grains of sand of those times before modernization. In addition, the methods that were based on astronomical measurements clashed with identical technological barriers.

Both Castile as well as Portugal accept the treaty of Tordesillas for distinct reasons, but each one rushes out in search of the Spice Territory{Especiería} within its own demarcation. Spices, a commodity of enormously increasing value, had reached [page 26] Europe centuries earlier through the maritime and land routes of the Middle East, which linked the eastern Mediterranean with the terminals of Venetian trade. The expansion of the Ottoman empire had seriously affected this age-old trade, generating a great scarcity of these products in the end market. The sea provided a means to directly access its sources in the south of Asia, thus yielding a vastly superior profit despite the enormous costs of the undertaking.

The Portuguese, under the command of Vasco de Gama, reach India, specifically Calicut/Calcutta, in 1498; this becomes an incentive for the Castillian exploration through the west. On May 11, 1502, Christopher Columbus, with his gaze fixed toward the Asian continent, commands the first Castillian expedition, and seeks to find a passage between America and Asia, since it was already evident that what had been discovered in the earlier voyages was not Cathay (China) nor Cipango (Japan), as confirmed by Vespucius in 1501 in a voyage carried out on orders of the king of Portugal, through the coast of South America. The fourth voyage of Columbus only served to confirm that the Caribbean Sea did not provide any passageway toward Asia. With identical finality, in June of 1508, a new expedition was launched under Pinzón and Solis to explore the area north of the Gulf of Mexico, which ended in a new disaster.

In the meantime, the Portuguese continued advancing toward the east in Asia, and in 1512, a Luisitanian expedition under the command of Antonio de Abreu, reaches the Moluccas, the principal source of practically all the valuable spices. In the court of Castile, the feeling of anxiety is spreading, since interestingly, they are convinced that the Moluccas lies within their hemisphere, and a new expedition headed by Solis is launched to find the passageway that will open a way over the bothersome American continent and lead to Southeast Asia. Solís reaches the Rio de la Plata, but is killed in an ambush and the rest of the expedition returns to Spain. This disaster does not discourage the new king of Spain, Carlos I, who sends a new expedition under the command of Magellan on 10 August 1519.

Magellan, a Portuguese nobleman who is as determined as he is ambitious, had already been in the Moluccas in the service of his king, but unhappy at the way he was treated by Manuel I, he presented himself to Carlos I in Valladolid with a plan to reach the [page 27] Moluccas through the Mar del Sur, passing through a narrow channel that he was certain existed.

During the conquest of Malaca by Portugal in 1511, Magellan had received detailed reports from his friend, Francisco Serrao, about the Moluccas, indicating that in his opinion, the Moluccas was in the hemisphere pertaining to Castile, and moreover, emphasizing most eloquently the economic importance of these islands. [7]

His expedition is one of the most famous maritime exploits of all time; although we cannot dwell on his report, it is interesting to stress three facts contained in the report that relate directly to Urdaneta: Elcano, countryman and acquaintance of our hero, relates the incident when, returning to the Iberian Peninsula through the Portuguese route of the Cape of Good Hope; Gonzalo de Vito remains on the island of Guam, which we will refer to later on; and the first attempt to turn back from the Moluccas to Nueva España (Mexico) is made by the ship Trinidad, although it is doomed to fail,, since it is forced to return to Tidore where it is seized by the Portuguese.

On November 6, 1522, the ship Victoria under the command of Juan Sebastian Elcano, reaches Seville, after completing the first voyage in History to sail around the world.

Therefore, the two western maritime powers of the time had already reached the Moluccas, each one by its own route (although Castile had to invade the Portuguese demarcation to be able to return). Nevertheless, they were unable to reach an agreement concerning the issue of jurisdiction over those islands in accordance with the terms of the Treaty of Tordesillas. On 19 February 1524, representatives of both countries meet in Vitoria and only agree to meet again with some committees of experts from each side, with the assistance of Elcano, among others.

These meetings were held alternatively, between March and May, in Badajoz and Elvas, without reaching any agreement. Both parties claim their lack of knowledge to be able to establish the demarcation line with certainty. But the fundamental reason, at least on the part of the Castillians, was probably due to diplomatic concealment rather than on scientific ignorance: the navigational log book of the pilot Albo, companion of Magellan [page 28] and Elcano, prove that the Castillians already knew that the Moluccas were completely within the Portuguese demarcation.

The failure of the meetings of Elvas and Badajoz finally impel the launching of a new expedition that the Emperor had been preparing while the talks were ongoing. The new squadron sails from La Coruña on 24 July 1525 and reaches Tidore on January 1527 with only one ship under the command of Carquizano, since García Jofre de Loaysa, who was leader initially, and Elcano and T. Alonso de Salazar, who would succeed him as head, die during the voyage. Elcano had embarked on this expedition with Andres de Urdaneta. The details of this expedition, which Urdaneta reported in writing on his return in 1536, conform to the following chapter of this book.

The Treaty of Zaragoza[8], signed on 22 April 1529, implied the sale of the islands of the Moluccas to Portugal for 350,000 ducats. There was still no certainty as to whom the territory of the Spice Islands pertained to according to the treaty of Tordesillas, but Carlos I had a pressing need for money to defray his war with Italy that resulted in problematic episodes, such as the recent looting of Rome by the rebellious imperial troops. Moreover, it was very possible that the Empress Isabel, wife of Carlos I and daughter of Don Manuel I of Portugal, had influence. Due to pressure from the Cortes of Castile, who were openly against this sale, a clause was added to allow its being sold back in case there later was a change of heart.

Regarding this situation, the Moluccas had been abandoned; but interest in it still remained. Thus, in 1535, Hernando de Grijalva attempted anew to reach Southeast Asia, although the expedition ended in disaster. The return of Urdaneta and the rest of the expeditions of Loaysa and Saavedra to Castile on Portuguese vessels, far from extinguishing hopes, revived them, when first hand knowledge was gained on the feebleness of the Portuguese foothold in the territory of the Spice Islands and the wide possibilities presented by the local conflicts.

The scenario changes substantially at the start of the reign of Philip II. The idea of putting in motion a great commercial route with two large centers of commerce in its extreme west and east, the revenue from which will help alleviate the enormous cost of the wars in Flanders first, and England later, becomes apparent from the first moments of his accession to the throne. [p. 29] In 1559, Luis de Velasco, viceroy of Nueva España receives the order of Philip II to prepare a new squadron to go to the Philippines and discover a return route. Once again, the instructions not to go to the Moluccas are specific and blunt.

Yet, at that time, it was already public knowledge among the cartographers and the principal Spanish navigators that the Philippines was also within the demarcation assigned to Portugal. Urdaneta himself clearly makes this known to the king in 1560: the terms of the undertaking of 1528 were as valid for the Moluccas as well as the Philippines. Nevertheless, the Augustinian, who was as astute in diplomacy as he was in cartography, presented to the king a battery of humanitarian reasons to evade the terms of the agreement. He does not even mention the possibility to repurchase what was pawned in Zaragoza. He knows that Philip II is bankrupt and that the great incentive for the new undertaking is precisely his urgent need for new sources of income.

The King, in his response to the Viceroy and to Urdaneta, keeps silent, which can only be interpreted as his implicit consent: he attempts to carry through with a policy of fait accompli that would transform Castile into the commercial terminal of Asia, while outwardly and in writing, he scrupulously respects the terms agreed on in Zaragoza. And so, on 21 November 1564, the expedition of Miguel López de Legazpi, with Urdaneta as the navigator, sails from the port of Navidad, officially bound for New Guinea, but with all its navigational plans referring to the Philippines.

After an outward voyage that was not marked by any incident except for the desertion of Arellano, who was anxious to achieve the laurels he had only heard about for completing a return trip, and which at one point almost cost him his head because of his irresponsible adventurism, the expeditionaries establish themselves in the Philippines, initiating a period of colonization that would last until 1898, one of the longest in history. On 1 June 1565, Urdaneta, with only one ship, began his return trip toward the east. 130 days later, he disembarked in Acapulco. Crossing the Pacific Ocean in Asia to America was not only possible but relatively simple. He only needed to know how to do it. As he had asserted, he knew how to do it.

Upon the return of Urdaneta, and with Legazpi already established in the Philippines, the king convokes a council of experts to express an opinion about the undertaking of [page 30] 1529. The experts declare that, although the Philippines was a possession of Castile according to the Treaty of Tordesillas, it was included in the pledge signed by Carlos I with the King of Portugal. Evidently, these were opinions that were more political rather than scientific in nature, and meant to counteract the expected protests from the Portuguese. But through their own cunning, they denote the state of the real geographical knowledge at the time.

One of the reports was that of Urdaneta which, after establishing with great precision that the meridian of the Treaty of Tordesillas is off by 20 degrees (clearly in favor of Castile) in the antemeridian and even succeeds in proving, oh luckily, that not only the Philippines but also Canton, lie within the Castillian demarcation[9], as we shall see in detail later on.

Urdaneta estimates that the 370 leagues (based on, as was usual in Castillian navigation at that time, the real/royal league, which means about 17.5 in degrees) parallel to the island of San Antón, the westernmost island of Cabo Verde, set by the Treaty of Tordesillas, is equivalent to 22º 10’ in longitude. Taking Toledo as meridian zero and situating San Anton at 20º 58’ west, the line of Tordesillas is positioned at 43º08’ west of Toledo, with an error of only 32’. Making use of Portuguese sea-charts (and not his own measurements, that he had undoubtedly accomplished) he established the antemeridian at 113º east of Greenwich, approximately, when in reality this had to be set 20º further toward the orient. These twenty degrees were crucial. As far as it is known, the report was never utilized.

This was the final corollary to that testament of Adam recorded in Tordesillas. The following words contained in a paragraph of the second report of the cosmographer Alfonso de Santa Cruz in November 1566 could have served as the post scriptum:


[page 33]


On 8 September 1522, the ship Victoria, under the command of Juan Sebastian Elcano with 16 survivors of Magellan’s expedition, reaches Sevilla, after completing the first voyage around the world in the annals of history.

The wretched condition they were in concealed a very distinct state of high spirits. The nautical success must have combined the not inconsiderable economic achievement and some overly optimistic expectations of those involved and of the Crown. The cargo of spices, specifically cloves, brought by the Victoria, meant for the royal coffers the most respectable sum of 25.000 ducats.[11].

When the increased income generated by the spices became well known, the economic success of this expedition awakened the greed of Carlos I who, apart from solving the disputes with Portugal, began almost immediately to prepare for the conquest of the Especiaría and thus finally establish a settlement in those islands.

It is symptomatic that, without even knowing the results of Magellan’s expedition, Carlos I already sent Andrés Niño on the 13th [p. 34]of September 1520 as the commander of three galleons and one brigantine, to the Moluccas. The results of this expedition are wrapped in mystery because nothing was ever known about it.[12]

But Carlos I placed into action all possible resources and thus, on 26 June 1523, sends Hernan Cortés who at that time was in Mexico, the following order: “Eagerly, I have been informed that on the southern sector of that land, in the deep sea, where there are great secrets and things which would be of great service to our Lord and to these growing kingdoms, and I order you and request you to be careful and to send prudent and experienced persons to see and learn about it.”[13]
And in Castile, preparations began for the launching of a powerful fleet capable of conquering the whole territory of the Spice Islands once and for all.
On the 13th of November 1522, two months after the arrival of Elcano, Carlos I orders the drawing up of an agreement with ship owners who were ready to construct an armada which would proceed to the islands of the Especiería, and whose command would be given to “a leading gentleman of our kingdoms”[14] who would remain there and have wide powers as the legal representative of the Monarch.
The ship owners would be granted economic rights over the spices, and the Chamber of Commerce [Casa de Contratación] de la Coruña would be created, the result of insistent petitions along this line. The first chapter of the royal agreement states: “Firstly, for doing good and to thank said ship owners, and because we understand that in this way they are cooperating toward the objective of developing the transport and trade of spices and the profitable sale of this commodity, and the many other advantages and benefits we will attain, we promise to establish and we shall establish, a business house in our city of La Coruña for the trade of said spices and goods that will come from the Indies”.[15]
Thus in 1520, the Galician nobility and high clergy meet in Melide to ask the King to take steps that would favor Galicia, among them the creation of a Chamber of Commerce specifically for the purpose of trading with the Far East and separate from that of Sevilla. After the arrival of the ship Victoria under the command of Elcano in 1522, the Council of La Coruña once again insists on this and on the 24th of December of this year, Carlos I accedes to this petition after receiving favorable reports from his advisers.
[page 35]
The main reason for this act is logistical in nature because it was expected that most of the goods coming from the “Far East” would be re-exported to England, Holland or France. The creation of this new organization gave rise to fiery protests in Sevilla, which on the other hand was logical, given the fact that this would mean a loss of business for this port.
The ultimate objective of the expedition is plain and simple: the final conquest of the Moluccas; apart from the seamen needed to man the ships, there is an abundant presence of soldiers to consolidate the power of Castile in the islands.
It must be taken into account that the Portuguese empire when it became a maritime power, that is to say, because of their dominion of the navigational routes and their defensive installations in strategic points, still presented a sufficient number of weak flanks and they were aware of this fact in Castile.
In the appointment of García Jofre deLoaysa dated 5 April 1525[16], he is granted the authority to administer civil and criminal justice over the armada as well as over the Moluccas and its natives, and it is very clear that the plan was for him to remain there.
The expedition of Loaysa was financed through shares; the list of shareholders[17] includes bankers like the Welsers or the Fucares who contributed 2000 ducats each and even Captains like Guevara, Acuña or Carquizano who contributed smaller amounts.
In spite of the haste of Carlos I, the expedition was delayed for two years since it was necessary to complete the construction of the ships, which at the moment of launching were seven:

Santa María de la Victoria, flagship, 360 tons and commanded by García Jofre de Loaysa himself.

Sancti Spiritus, 240 tons and commanded by Juan Sebastían Elcano who is the Head Pilot and responsible for the navigation of the expedition.

Anunciada, 204 tons and commanded by Pedro de Vera, yeoman/member of the Casa Real.

San Gabriel, 156 tons, led by Rodrigo de Acuña

[p.36] Santa Maria del Parral, 95 tons, headed by Jorge Manrique de Nájera.

San Lesmes, 96 tons, headed by Francisco de Hoces.

Santiago, advice-boat {?patache}, 60 tons, headed by Santiago de Guevara.

The first four were built in Vizcaya and the other three in La Coruña.[18]

The prime mover of the expedition is Juan Sebastian Elcano himself, whose optimism is reflected by the number of direct relatives who embark on the voyage with him, three brothers and one brother-in-law. One must note the great number of Guipuzcoans who go on the expedition.
Andrés de Urdaneta sails on the Sancti Spiritus, with the position of understudy/substitute[19], which in today’s language may be translated to mean that of a student undergoing training. Based exclusively only on his young age, he is 17 years old, some biographers conclude that this Ordizian had boarded the ship as a cabin boy or page, and probably motivated by his eagerness for adventure.
These suppositions are in contradiction with the functions that Urdaneta carried out even before the embarkation since he signs as witness, together with Elcano, important economic documents of Hernando de Guevara[20], is also one of the witnesses to the testament of Elcano and appears to enjoy an enviable unlimited access to the commanders of the expedition and particularly to the numerous Guipuzcoans. The Marqués de Seoane in his book Navegantes Guipuzcoanos gives him the title of Contador {Accountant/book-keeper}, a position to which he would later rise due to the great number of vacancies that cropped up, especially after exiting the Strait of Magellan to the Pacific Ocean. The basic reason for the position that Urdaneta occupies may lie, very probably, in the economic relationships, undoubtedly powerful, of his family with one of the shippers.

[page 39]

The Voyage. Baptism of the Sea

The chronicle of this expedition, one of the most disastrous expeditions of the epoch, reaches us in three narratives of Urdaneta himself, the first one that was prepared was only about the arrival in Castile, for his direct chief Alonso de Santa Cruz, at that time Head Cosmographer[21] [see appendix of documents No. 1], a second one for the Council of the Indies[22], which was more exhaustive than the former and dated in Valladolid on 26 February 1537, and a third one[23] that was much more tedious and completed later.
There also exist log-books of the pilots Hernando de la Torre[24] and Martin de Uriarte, with very exact technical data. We also have on hand a very succinct report of Juan de Areizaga on the voyage up to the Strait of Magellan and another of Diego Solier[25] up to January of 1531 when the Moluccas was abandoned.
Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo also reports in great detail on the voyage in his Historia General y Natural de las Indias since Urdaneta had told him about this, including all its details, in 1539 during his stay in Santo Domingo; to complete the third narrative of Urdaneta, it is necessary to refer to this work because the narrative is incomplete.
[page 40]
The expedition is launched on 24 July 1525 from La Coruña, sails in a convoy as usual and without incidents, up to La Gomera, where it arrives on the 2nd of August, remaining in this port up to the 14th of this month to take on provisions and water.
Before departing from La Gomera, Loaysa calls for a meeting of officials and according to the report of Diego Solier25, he shows them the orders of Carlos I. According to these orders, they should follow the course of the Cape of Good Hope, which means, the route of Portugal, and implies violating the Treaty of Tordesillas. Nevertheless it seems, as we shall see later, that Juan Sebastian Elcano convinces them to sail through the Strait of Magellan with the intention of later touching at Cipango (Japan), which according to legend contained fabulous riches, before proceeding to the Moluccas.
The possibility of sailing through the route of the Portuguese is only mentioned by Solier, but subsequent events seem to give verisimilitude to this hypothesis. After La Gomera, to sail toward the Strait of Magellan, the correct way from the nautical point of view, would have been to navigate toward the southwest in order to make landfall on the coast of Brazil, taking advantage of the easterly winds. However, the expedition sails downward along the coast of Africa until the Gulf of Guinea which places them in the zone of equatorial calm, causing them to lose much valuable because they had to go around, either the Strait of Magellan or the Cape of Good Hope, making good use of the fair weather of the austral summer. This gives the impression that they had serious doubts about which course to follow.
On 5 September, after some mishaps, they encounter a Portuguese ship on its return voyage from Santo Tomé. This drawback was perfectly predictable because the Portuguese were already assiduous in maintaining the Portugal-Guinea limit and they found themselves in their demarcation.
Upon sighting the Portuguese vessel, Loaysa sends the advice-boat commanded by Santiago Guevara, to negotiate with it but when proceeding toward the central part of the fleet, Rodrigo de Acuña in the San Gabriel orders that shots be fired at the Portuguese. This provoked a strong verbal confrontation between Guevara and Acuña.
The incident with the Portuguese was resolved in a diplomatic way by Loaysa; Rodrigo de Acuña was relieved of his command of the San Gabriel, and was replaced by Martín de Valencia.
Starting from this time, the voyage is slow and laborious because of the need to tack the sails in the face of contrary winds and because of the periods of calm. Urdaneta laments that in one month and a half, they have only traveled 150 leagues.
On October 15, they catch sight of the island of San Mateo where they go to load provisions and overhaul the advice-boat. They remain here until November 3, when they set sail for Brazil. According to the report of Urdaneta, the expedition catches sight of the island of San Mateo from a distance of 10 leagues, which is equivalent at present to about 34 miles and implies that this island had a more than noticeable elevation of at least 1,400 meters.
Concerning its location, there is a contradiction in what Urdaneta tells us: on one hand he situates this at 12 leagues south southeast of Cape Palmas, and on the other hand, he tells us that it is 2º 30’ South. The charts of that epoch and those of subsequent centuries situate the island in the latitude indicated to us by Urdaneta as well as Hernando de la Torre; from this location up to Cape Palmas is a distance of about 450 miles or 130 leagues. We are faced with a possible error of Urdaneta, but it is very difficult to verify since this island does not exist today.
Those who, like Cook in May of 1775, searched for this unsuccessfully, ended up thinking that they were dealing with a cartographic fiction. But the reports of the expedition of Loaysa leave little room for doubt concerning its real existence. The subsequent hypothesis that the expeditionaries had inadvertently made landfall in Annobon or in one of the islands of the archipelago of Fernando de Noronha lacks technical credibility. The unresolved enigma of the island of San Mateo is, in any case, independent of the stay of Loaysa’s expedition in that island in October of 1525, since there is an abundance of cartographic records before and after that incident.
Moreover, in the log-book of Hernando de la Torre, this is in its exact position, taking as reference the Capes of Palmas and Tres Puntas, that are two perfectly known points of reference in the Gulf of Guinea and the coast of Africa.
On the other hand, Urdaneta’s report contains a meticulousness that leads one to sense intentions that are not expressed (Urdaneta knows, without any doubt, that [p. 42] the most strategic point is plainly in the hemisphere assigned to Portugal). And if an enigma is bequeathed to posterity, that of the real existence and position of the island, the report perhaps also clarifies another enigma: that of the dramatic end of almost all the commanders of that expedition and, among them, that of the first circumnavigator of the planet, Elcano.
<>, he relates. Mal de camaras is, in today’s terminology, diarrhea.
It deals, very clearly, with a case of food poisoning from ingesting a poisonous fish; in this case, picuda or picúa, which is better known today by its name in the Anglo-Saxon countries as barracuda. A species that can grow to a great size, it lives in the coral reefs in the warm tropical waters and is extremely voracious. This makes it a prize catch and places it at the top of the chain of tropical marine life, and it becomes one of the most customary carriers of the dinoflagellate Gambierdicus toxicus, whose numerous toxins have no appreciable effect on the diverse tropical fishes that may ingest it, but can cause serious harm to human beings.
Inheriting the popular name given to food poisoning since the XVIIIth century in the Hispanic Carribean because of its association with the ingestion of ciguas, crustaceans that are also regular carriers of the tropical algae, ciguatera is now one of the types of food poisoning through fish that is most common in the tropical zones. Its incidence has grown due to the increase of tourism in those zones. In recent times, the barracuda has become one of the principal agents, being one of the species preferred in recreational fishing and there do not exist feasible ways of detecting the poisonous fish beforehand. Since the middle of the XXth century, however, the treatment with manitol has reduced the effects of ciguatera in cases of food poisoning that are generally light and only require continued medication and diet.
In fact, Urdaneta’s narrative must be, because of its agent (a barracuda), its symptoms (gastrointestinal) etc., a report on the first case of ciguatera that is clearly [page 43] documented in history. The contemporary references contained in the Décadas del Nuevo Mundo of Pedro Mártir de Anglería, that tend to cite this as the first historical proof of this food poisoning, are quite vague and do not allow us to understand allusions to any of the other types of food poisoning caused by marine nutrients. The principal conclusion that can be drawn from the narrative of Urdaneta is, however, of another sphere.
Together with its immediate gastrointestinal symptoms which manifest a few hours after ingesting the poisoned fish, ciguatera {food poisoning caused by fish or crustaceans}has other side effects, principally neurotoxic (visual and psychomotor disturbance, reversed sensation of hot and cold, metallic taste in the mouth, etc.), that may last for weeks or months, depending on the treatment given and the amount of toxins ingested, that may be very variable, even in the same type of fish, depending on the part ingested. This is why, in the present treatments, it is crucial to continue receiving medical treatment during a prolonged period of time, until it can be verified that the toxins have been totally eliminated. During this period, alcohol is contraindicated and it is advisable to abstain from eating fish.
This knowledge now allows us to reasonably conclude that Urdaneta was guilty of being optimistic when he believed that, when the acute diarrhea they suffered had abated, the ill-starred diners had been healed. The later events give cause to doubt that the opposite happened. Loaysa, Elcano and the rest of those highly responsible officers and administrators of the expedition who left the Peninsula in July 1525, died or disappeared at sea between April and September of 1526, in what constitutes a historic enigma connected to the nautical and operative disaster of the expedition.
The high rates of mortality that are registered in almost all the great voyages of the epoch invariably follow a pattern in line with the incidence of the principal ailment on these voyages, scurvy. In Loaysa’s expedition, on the contrary, the pattern seems to be reversed: more commanders than mariners died earlier and in proportionally larger number. And what we know about the symptoms presented by Elcano as well as the Commander have no relation to scurvy.
The more nutritious food of the leaders, on land and particularly on board the ship, made them comparatively less vulnerable to scurvy. Nevertheless, the usual diet of persons of this rank in a vessel of the XVI century (the testament of Elcano is a valuable source of information on this), should undoubtedly help them to recover from the ciguatera, and not on the contrary.
Understandably, Urdaneta does not provide the names, not even the number, of those invited by Loaysa. But the phrase “some of the Captains and officers of the King” in the record of the expedition’s condition at the end leads to the supposition that the almost all the principal navigators and administrators of the expedition ate of the poisonous barracuda, starting with the host Loaysa and his second in command, Elcano.
After departing from San Mateo on the 3rd of November, the passage to the Atlantic is accomplished under favorable weather conditions and on 5 December, they reach the coast of Brazil 21º South, at the latitude of the present commonwealth of Espiritu Santo. The peak of Da Bandeira, 2,890 meters in elevation, is identifiable, which Urdaneta calls Montaña de San Nicolas, in reference to the date.
Sailing along the coast, they continue the voyage toward the south in search of the strait. But as they continue to gain latitude, the weather worsens and on the 28th of December, a storm separates the flagship from the rest of the fleet. Because the river of Santa Cruz was previously agreed on as a meeting place, on the 12th of January 1526, a council was held here and those present, goaded by the need to complete the passage during the austral summer, decide to continue until the entrance to the Strait without waiting for the flagship.
On January 14, Elcano mistakes the Rio Gallego for the mouth of the Strait; the fleet enters and all the ships run aground. But luckily, the tide was low, and when it rose, the ships are able to slip away.
Urdaneta refers to this occurrence with words that harbor a strong reproach for Elcano, barely concealed by his respect and his peculiar syntax that is heavily peppered with Vasquesisms: “in truth, he was very blind toward those who had first been in the strait, aside from Juan Sebastián del Cano, who knew everything there was to know about navigation”. [p.45-chart;p.46] This incident was a serious error, because this entry point is completely distinct from that of the Strait and this event would have catastrophic consequences.
After this incident, Elcano anchors the Sancti Spiritus in front of the cape of Once Mil Virgenes and a storm drives the ship to the coast. Elcano and Urdaneta, go on to the Anunciada, having given up the Sancti Spiritus as lost.
On January 17, once the crew members who had remained in Rio Gallegos had been rescued, they round the cape of the Once Mil Virgenes, but another storm from the southeast forces them to go out to the open sea in order to heaving to the storm. Two days later, they return to the strait and the next day, they encounter the Santa Maria del Parral and the San Lesmes anchored in the bay of San Felipe, past the first narrow pass. These three ships remain anchored here and Urdaneta orders a group to rescue the survivors of the shipwrecked Sancti Spiritus who had remained in the cape of the Once Mil Virgenes.
On January 24, the flagship enters the strait with the San Gabriel and the advice-boat, with the rest of the fleet remaining together. Laoysa sends Elcano to recover whatever possible from the wreck of the Sancti Spiritus, an operation that lasts until the 5th of February when another storm obliges them to change their anchoring-place.
The San Lesmes sails off to the open sea to hesving to the storm, descending/having leeway until 55º South and discovering Cape Horn. Urdaneta describes this in his second narrative: “they later said when they returned that it appeared to them that here was the end of the earth”.
On February 9, the San Gabriel heads toward them to ask help for the flagship, which had run aground and sprung a leak. The following day, the Anunciada passed in front of them, but did not respond to any signal and vanished into the horizon, disappearing forever. Apparently, the deserting ship could have been, recklessly and fruitlessly, heading toward the Cape of Good Hope.
After holding a council of officers, Loaysa decides to beach the flagship for an overhaul in the Santa Cruz River. The captain of the San Gabriel, Rodrigo de Acuña, who had already been sanctioned previously for lack of discipline after an [page 47] intense dispute with Loaysa, disobeys his orders and disappears with his ship. The crew members, in the face of the approaching austral winter and seeing that the expedition was not advancing, were starting to become completely demoralized and undisciplined.
The rest of the armada, meaning the flagship, the Santa Maria del Parral, the San Lesmes and the Santiago, go back to the Santa Cruz River where they remain until the 24th of March to repair the flagship. On April 8, they once again enter the strait and on May 26, after solving various problems they had been facing, they pass the cabo Deseado, the western exit of the Strait of Magellan which is 52º South, and they begin crossing the Pacific.
At this point in his long diary, Urdaneta includes a detailed and complete sea-chart of the entire Strait of Magellan. The exactness of the distances, bearings and soundings is notable. He explains the currents as being caused by the tides and recommends more secure anchorages.
The period of almost six months it had taken them to cross the Strait, added to the previous delays, caused the fleet to confront the difficulties inherent to the approach of winter. Urdaneta graphically relates the situation a few days after navigating through the Pacific: “and when the wind began to abate, we found ourselves in the midst of three intersecting seas and we thought our ship would be smashed”.
These storms caused the rest of the fleet to disperse, isolating the flagship on board which were Loaysa, Elcano and the other high officers, besides Urdaneta. The advice-ship Santiago would go back along the whole coast of Chile and South America to reach Nueva España of Cortés; the news that they brought triggered off the voyage of Saavedra to the Moluccas to help Loaysa. Indeed, Saavedra would find the remains of the Santa Maria del Parral on the island of Senguin in the Celebes archipelago, where only two survivors remained[26]. The San Lesmas passed on to swell the long list of ships that had vanished without a trace; recent discoveries lead to suspicions that it ended its voyage somewhere in the islands of the South Pacific.
On 30 July 1526, Captain General Loaysa dies. He is succeeded in his post, according to royal stipulations, by Juan Sebastián Elcano, who [page 48] in turn would pass away a few days later, on the 4th of August, leaving the expedition under the command of Toribio Alonso de Salazar, treasurer of the San Lesmas who at the time was under detention for suspicion of intending to desert.
It may be inferred that, aside from being one of the witnesses in the famous testament of Elcano[27], which was drawn up on 26 July 1526, Urdaneta was probably the one who actually wrote it. The calligraphy of the document bears great similarity to other documents written by the Ordizian, and from his own narrative, it may be concluded that Iñigo Cortés de Perea, accountant of the flagship, who acts as official executor of the testament, must have been in a worse state than the sick Elcano, since he passed away before Elcano did within the short period of ten days between the date the testament was written and the death of the one from Getaria.
On the 9th of August and while already in latitude 12º North, considering the large number of scurvy cases among the crew, a decision is reached in council to proceed to the Ladrones islands, now the Marianas.
Hernando de la Torre in his log book, makes the following annotation: “Thursday, the 9th of said month (August): I did not take the latitude, we proceeded 37 leagues west northwest, reaching the point in the chart in barely 12 degrees. This same day, all the officers of the ship agreed with the Captain not to sail further north, because we had lost many men, and we had to make our way to the islands of Molucca.”
At this point, Urdaneta once again expresses his opinion that Elcano had intended to go to Cipango before proceeding to the Moluccas. There already existed the precedent of Magellan’s expedition, because he, aside from knowing the exact latitude of the Moluccas, information which his friend Serrao had given him, reached much further north, specifically the island of Mindanao in the Philippines. For this reason, after leaving the Strait, they had sailed further eastward than Magellan, since it was believed that Japan was much closer to North America than it really was. In the planisphere of Waldeseemuller, Japan is between 10 and 20 degrees west of America.
On August 21, while they were in what must have been latitude 13º 35’ North, according to Urdaneta, they sighted an island on which they could not disembark and which they name [page 49] San Bartolomé. This is Taongi island[28] in the Marshall archipelago. The real location of the island is 14º 40’ North; the error of Urdaneta, approximately one degree, we can consider small.
On the 4th of September, they make landfall on the island of Guam, which the natives called Botaha. To everyone’s surprise, a seaman named Gonzalo de Viga, who had been with the expedition of Magallanes, appears. This man, who was assimilated into the expedition, would be of great use to them because of the knowledge he had acquired in the languages, customs and the potentials of the islands. Undoubtedly, he was one of the sources of knowledge of Urdaneta, who would live with him at least until their return to the Iberian Peninsula.
On September 10, they sail from Guam and on the 15th of this month, Toribio Alonso de Salazar dies. The royal directors did not anticipate the possibility of so many Captains General dying, and at the hour of selecting the new head, a definite controversy arose. Finally, Martín Iñiguez de Carquizcano was selected, a native of Elgoibar, of noble birth and closely linked to the world of ironworks, and up to that moment, General Accountant.
It may be deduced that Urdaneta played an important part in this election. He relates in great detail the first process of electing the new Captain General - it was a choice between Martín Iñiguez and Fernando de Bustamante - wherein the ballot box was hurled into the sea by the former. To avoid more controversies, it was decided that for the time being, they would share the position until reaching land. They proceed in this way until October 2 when they catch sight of Mindanao.
Martin Iñiguez de Carquizcano summons the officers and the chief constable to the cabin at the stern to lecture them, an incident described by Urdaneta in this way: “Seeing that as we were in the archipelago of Celebes and very close to the Moluccas, it was an act of cowardice on the part of all of us who were on that ship, and a great disservice to His Majesty, for us to go on without a captain or commander, and it could happen that we would run into some Portuguese ships or native junks, and not having a designated or elected captain, some disaster may befall us and we would be like men out of control and disorderly, and for this reason, we feel we are required by God and His Majesty to designate, accept and swear allegiance to said Martín Iñiguez de Carquizano”.

[p.50] On Saturday, the 6th of October, with Carquizano as head and the selection of Bustamante nullified, they drop anchor in the inlet of Lianga, island of Mindanao, presently known as Caraga[29].
Of the 145 men who remained in the flagship when they left the Strait of Magellan, only 105 arrived here[30].
Up to this point, we are dealing with the voyage, the nautical aspect of the expedition. The two accounts of Urdaneta enable us to reach some conclusions about him.
The bearings that Urdaneta indicates during the voyage are almost identical to those of the pilots, which shows he had received proper training prior to becoming a navigator and/or a great aptitude for acquiring knowledge on other subjects which were rarely presented to him in a clear or pedagogical manner, although it was obvious that his belonging to Elcano’s circle of confidants allowed him to overcome many obstacles.
In its course through the Atlantic toward the south, the expedition followed the route of Magellan, entering the Gulf of Guinea, with the loss of time it entailed. Nowadays, we know that they were committing a serious error. In complaining that in one month and a half they had only traveled 150 leagues, Urdaneta was clearly aware of that error and what its repercussions would be in the immediate future in the Strait of Magellan and in the South Pacific. Later events like the desertion of the Anunciada give rise to suspicions that one part of the expedition could have been in favor of proceeding toward the Especieria through the route of Good Hope, which was much more uncertain.
The criticism of Elcano in the Santa Cruz River, his responsibility in the rescue operations in the Cabo de las Once Mil Virgenes, his knowledge of the route that Elcano was planning through the Pacific (“I do believe that if Juan Sebastian de Elcano did not die, we would not have reached the Ladrones islands so quickly, because his intention was always to go in search of Cipango, that is why he even reached the continent of Nueva España”) and his participation in the election of the last Captain General showed that he was discharging a great responsibility, although this was not at any time clearly expressed.
[p.51] In addition to his knowledge of navigation, these two narratives show his great powers of observation. On 26 April 1526, in the middle of traversing the Strait of Magellan, he relates: “In this port, there was an abundance of good firewood and we found a red fruit like a cherry, but with no pit and we ate them. Also in this port and all throughout the Strait, oysters are plentiful and good, and have imperfect pearls inside, and there are some trees that looked exactly like cinnamon trees, the bark is somewhat thick and tastes like cinnamon”.

[page 53]

The Battle of the Moluccas

Once in Mindanao and anchored in the cove of Lianga, they attempt to take on provisions and for this purpose they try to gain the confidence of the natives, making use of the linguistic skills of Gonzalo de Vigo, but these natives had already dealt with other visitors they call “faranguis” and they are very suspicious. Urdaneta interprets this term as a synonym for Portuguese (“saying that we were ‘faranguys, thieves and robbers and wherever we went, these dogs thought we were Portuguese”), although, according to Pastells, the terms should be interpreted as stranger in general.
Urdaneta describes the natives of this island in great detail, their customs, including some unusual sexual practices, and their character “the natives of this island and some others are, in the majority, very treacherous, and whoever walked among these indians and could not speak their language, could lose himself because they are very treacherous”[31]. He also describes the existing trade between the different islands and even with China.
After 9 days in Lianga, the expedition departs on 15 October 1526 bound for Cebu, attempting to follow the steps of Magellan, but the contrary winds [page 54] prevent them from heading north and they make a half turn toward their final destination: the Moluccas.
They sail downwards along the eastern coast of Mindanao up to its extreme south, the island now known as Sarangani, to continue on to Talau where they arrive on the 20th and are very well received by the local King, who tries to involve them in their own wars.
Once they have taken on provisions, on the 27th, they sail anew and after two days, sight the island of Gilolo, the present Halmahera. On a small island at its extreme north named Rau, which they call Rabo, they find the first natives who speak Portuguese.
On November 2nd, they proceed to Zamafo, a port on the east coast of Gilolo which is 1 degree and 20 minutes latitude north, which is ruled by the King of Tidore, enemy of the Portuguese.
Zamafo would become a kind of permanent base and refuge for the Castillians until 1536, when they would finally abandon these islands.
They settle in the port of Zamafo on November 4 and through the natives, they receive news of the Portuguese, who have been in Ternate for six years, an island that is quite close by, and where they have built a well-armed fort. They are also informed that the Portuguese have some galleons and lateen-rigged boats to attack the natives who had dealt with the Castillians. Bad news, considering that at that time the expedition was comprised of only 105 men.
From Zamafo, Martín Iñiguez de Carquizano sends Urdaneta as an emissary to the local kings. The mission tries to establish a good relationship with the natives. To gain their respect, Urdaneta says that they have 7 other ships behind them and that they recognize the conflicts the natives have with the Portuguese. The young Ordiziarran begins to convert himself into the link between the expedition and the local powers of the region.
On the 30th of November, they receive a visit from a Portuguese emissary who orders them to abandon the islands since these belong to the king of Portugal. The message is rejected and a few days later, they receive news that the Portuguese are proceeding towards them with their entire fleet. The ship is made ready and quickly sets sail for Tidore.
[p.55] Due to the way events were developing, on 23 December Carquizano calls for a meeting of all the captains to decide on what to do. They unanimously resolve to remain here and fight the Portuguese, and preparations for the battle commence immediately.
On the 29th of December, the Portuguese fleet is sighted, but since the wind is in their favor, they succeed in evading a battle and continue the voyage, reaching Tidore on January 1, 1527. On this island, the king pledges his allegiance to them and they begin to construct a fort.
On January 18, the Portuguese attempt a surprise attack, but instead it is the Portuguese who are surprised; a battle ensues which lasts for two days. The Santa Maria de la Victoria sustains serious damage and sinks. It had already undergone repairs in the Strait of Magellan and it was most probably in a deplorable state, but it was the principal recourse of the expeditionary force.
From that time on, sporadic encounters take place and in March of 1527, in the course of one of these battles, Urdaneta suffers serious gunpowder burns and has to hurl himself into the water from the native parao he was on. “My being a good swimmer saved me today; I was badly burned and was confined inside a house of one of the natives of Gilolo and did not go out for twenty days”. The fact that Urdaneta knew how to swim, and to swim well, allows us to suspect that at least part of his education had taken place in a coastal area; it would have been very difficult for him to acquire this skill in his native Villafranca, given the quantity of water of the Oria.
After the sinking of his ship, the expeditionary force find themselves obliged to organize a shipyard in Gilolo, since their being without any means of communication presages an even more problematic future. And sure enough, in July, while Urdaneta was in Gilolo, two Portuguese emissaries arrive in Tidore, pretending to be on a mission of peace, and taking advantage of his trust, they succeed in poisoning Martín Iñiguez de Carquizano. He is succeeded by Hernando de la Torre, a native of the Burgos valley of Tobalina, adjacent to Alava, as stated in a letter sent to his father García Saenz de la Torre from the Moluccas on 1 March 1532. In the letter, he asks for pardon for having left the house without advising his father, and also giving some details about his situation, saying that they are in an all-out war with the Portuguese[32].

[p.56] The succession in command was quite fortuitous since Martín García de Carquizano and Fernando Bustamante had fought hard for this post, but those who had gathered for a meeting decided to give the post to De la Torre.
Nevertheless, by the middle of March 1528, to the great relief of the expeditionary forces, the caravel La Florida arrives, under the command of Alvaro de Saavedra, having been sent from Mexico by Cortés after the advice-boat Santiago reached Nueva España and hearing the report of Juan de Areyzaga. The ship remains in Tidore, taking part in some skirmishes with the Portuguese until the month of June, and after taking on provisions, with Macías del Poyo as pilot, they undertake the return voyage to Nueva España.
In November, on one of his innumerable trips with his native allies, who consider him their preferred interpreter because of his mastery of Malay, Urdaneta encounters two Portuguese from the crew of the La Florida on the island of Maquián. Suspecting them of being deserters, he arrests them. A few days later, Saavedra returns to Tidore, confirming his suspicions and bearing even worst news: forced by bad weather, they had only managed to reach the Marshall Islands.
La Florida remains in Tidore repairing its hull until the 3rd of May 1529, when they again try to return to Nueva España. This time, Saavedra makes the attempt through the north, but instead of navigating to the northeast from the Moluccas, he sails toward the eastnortheast. They reach latitude 30º North, but the weather is unfavorable and they decide to go back. In the course of this attempt, Saavedra dies. The survivors reach the Moluccas in December 1529.
Still unaware that Carlos I had sold his hypothetical rights over the Moluccas on 22 April 1529, this second disaster and the capture of Tidore by the Portuguese begin to finally undermine the morale of the survivors. They were starting to consider the possibility of negotiating with the Portuguese. In May of 1530, Urdaneta initiates talks with the lusos and the natives; in some way, these natives feel they have been betrayed by all the foreigners and in turn start to weigh the possibility of a general uprising against all Europeans.
[p.58] From this moment, incidents with the natives proliferate and the situation starts to become unsustainable. Urdaneta says that in 1532, only 27 or 28 Castillians were left. As a finishing touch to all these calamities, by these dates they receive news through the Portuguese that Carlos I has sold the islands to the King of Portugal. Fearing that this was a trick of their rivals, the expeditionaries send an emissary, Pedro de Montemanyor, to India to confirm this. Once the sale is confirmed, he returns to the Moluccas in 1533 accompanied by a Portuguese official who had been given the mission of facilitating their return.
On 15 January 1534, Hernando de la Torre sails for Spain through the route of the Portuguese, leaving Urdaneta to attend to the pending matters; although the Portuguese controlled all their movements. Urdaneta and Macias del Poyo, with some men, remain in the Moluccas until 15 February 1535. Urdaneta does not make any reference in his narratives about the last year of his stay in the Moluccas.
At the moment of his departure, an emissary of the king of Tidore asks Urdaneta to convey to the king of Castilla the loyalty of the inhabitants of those islands and at the same time, entreats him to expel the Portuguese.
From the Moluccas, they proceed to the islands of Banda where they wait until June for the passing of the monsoons. They touch Java on the way to Malaca, where they finally arrive at the end of July. On 15 November, they leave Malaca on a junk to proceed to Cochin in India, with a stopover at Ceilán.
On this island, they encounter Hernando de la Torre, who had been stuck there. In Cochin, the Portuguese split them up on various ships bound for Portugal. As Urdaneta and Macías del Poyo would depart ahead, Hernando de la Torre entrusts his diaries to Urdaneta.
Urdaneta and Macias del Poyo board the vessel San Roque on 12 January 1536 with enough misgivings: “because we were afraid that that if we were all together, it could happen that while we were at sea, they could wrap us in a sail and toss us overboard or kill us with poison”. Seeing the treatment they had received from the Portuguese there and their relations with them, and aware that they are troublesome witnesses, these fears may have been well founded. But after a voyage without [p. 59] unusual incidents and after stopping at the island of Santa Elena to take on provisions, they disembark in Lisbon on 26 June 1536.
The problems resurface on their arrival in Lisbon. The Portuguese confiscate all the papers that Urdaneta was carrying; these were documents of great technical and strategical value, including the report of Hernando de la Torre, the book of accountancy of the voyage, the sea-charts of the voyages of Loaysa and Saavedra, maps of the Moluccas and “other memoirs and written records, all of which were seized by the Head Guard without any judicial decree, or any authorization”.
Knowing the value of the documents that were seized, Urdaneta decides to proceed to Evora to complain to King Juan III of Portugal. But the Spanish Ambassador Sarmiento, who is an authority on the strained relations between the two monarchs and brothers-in-law, advises him that “the best I could do would be to be careful, and as quickly as I could, to seek refuge, and he would go to His Majesty and inform him of everything that was happening”.
The arguments of the ambassador must have been convincing, because Urdaneta immediately slipped away to Castilla “leaving a daughter, and other things, in Lisbon”. This is the only time when Urdaneta, who is always so reserved when it comes to his private life, mentions the existence of his only daughter.
Indeed, it appears that in those distant places, not everything was war and calamity; there is a Portuguese report that is quite expressive: “It dealt with 18 or 20 scoundrels who lived there as they had never lived in Spain, given to all the pleasures and surrounded by women and the many children that they had with the native women, and to top it all, being the factor a jew from Cordoba[33].
Urdaneta ends his account with a concise but comprehensive report on the economics and geography of the islands and would weigh their economic and strategic potential: “Likewise, as Your Majesty will see through this account, in the vicinity of the Moluccas, there are many rich islands worthy of conquest, and consequently many lands of great value, in addition to China, which can be reached from the Moluccas”.
[p.60] Once this report was presented, which he had reconstructed from memory after the seizure of his own documents, and after responding to questions before the Council of Indies, they order that Urdaneta be given the sum of 20 ducats in gold on the 21st of August 1536[34] as a reward for services rendered. Later, on 25 September 1536, he would collect his back wages for his excellent work in the expedition[35].
The narratives provide proof of Urdaneta’s great gift for observation, the profound knowledge he acquired about the islands of the Especiería and his open interest in the yields they could produce. The loss of his documents in Portugal certainly prevents us from knowing more about his activities there, especially during the years 1533 and 1534.
Urdaneta himself would tell Fernández de Oviedo about the characteristics of practically all the islands of the present Indonesia such as Borneo, Java or the Célebes, when they met in Santo Domingo in 1539, upon his return to America together with Alvarado. All these would be confirmed in Historia General of Fernandez de Oviedo[36].
In those lands, there already was an important volume of commercial traffic between the islands and with the continent during those years.
For this reason, it is very possible that Urdaneta might also have been in Japan. There is an article describing this country[37] that could have been written by him, if we note the writing and syntax of the document where this description is contained, and moreover, the heading says: “from the papers of Alonso de Santa Cruz of Sevilla”, a phrase that is identical to what is found in the beginning of Urdaneta’s first narrative about the expedition of Loaysa. It is the first document that describes this country, ahead by almost one decade from those of St. Francis Xavier. This voyage, taking into account the seasonal monsoons, can be completed in about twenty days for the outward trip and about the same number of days for the return. When we refer to the preparations for the Return Trip, we shall see that he mentions the possibility of stopping over in Japan.
But, undoubtedly, the tragic expedition of Loaysa had served to establish the basis for knowledge so that 30 years later, the return trip would be accomplished through the Pacific, thus consolidating the presence of Castile in the Philippines and the opening of one of the fundamental commercial routes of Modern Times.

[page 63]

Once the reports of his stay in the Especiería had been presented, first to Alonso de Santa Cruz and later to the Council of the Indies, Urdaneta becomes the “factotum” of any expedition destined to those lands.
The bishop of Plasencia Gutierre de Vargas y Carvajal, began to prepare immediately for a new expedition along the lines of Loaysa’s, with great resources and ships that were built in the same shipyards of Vizcaya, and of similar tonnage. This expedition would be headed by his own brother, Francisco de Camargo.
The destination of this expedition should have been the coasts of Chile, through the Strait of Magellan, but Gonzalo Fernandez de Oviedo says: “During that year, fifteen hundred thirty nine, another armada was being prepared which would be headed by Captain Camargo, brother of Gutierre de Vargas, bishop of Plasencia, which was very well provided with fine people, artillery and provisions, everything necessary for a voyage to the Especiería through the Strait of Magallanes, and others say, to China”[38].
We know that Urdaneta was involved in the preparations for this expedition; he himself states this in his record of “merits and service” which he sends to the [p. 64] Council of the Indies in 1548: “…and preparations were quickly completed for the ships and the Armada that Francisco de Camargo was leading to the province of Chile, which, however did not have the desired results, and he spent everything he had on this…”[39]. Only one ship of this expedition reached Arequipa in Peru.
By that time, specifically on the twenty seventh of November 1536, we have proof of the presence of Urdaneta in Ordizia since there is an existing document[40] where this is declared by a resident of la Villa who acted as a witness in one of the many disputes generated by the expedition of Loaysa.
Another important personage who is interested in the Especiería is the Adelantado Pedro de Alvarado who was in Castilla during those days. In Valladolid, he contacts Urdaneta to ask him to accompany him on his voyage, because of our hero’s knowledge of the Pacific and specifically of those lands.
On 16 October 1538, the fleet of Alvarado sails from Sevilla with a large retinue which includes Urdaneta, Martin de Islares who is another veteran of Loaysa’s expedition, and a nephew of Urdaneta named Juan Ochoa de Zavala, as well as another relative Domingo de Azcoitia.
At this point, it is right to ask one’s self why he does not go with the expedition of Gutierre de Varga but with Pedro Alvarado. We will find the answer many years later in Urdaneta’s report for the viceroy Velasco, written at the end of the decade of the 1550s, he disparages in technical terms the option to navigate directly from Castile to the Especieria: “but the route from Spain to the Strait of Magellan is very long, and if you sail in a straight line, it is a distance of almost two thousand leagues; the Strait is at a height of fifty two degrees and more, off the equinox toward the southern side, passing along the coast from one ocean to another, a distance of almost ninety leagues, and it is a populated area, with a short summer and long winter, with strong tempests and battering winds”[41].
Although it is not signed, the report could only have been written by Urdaneta, since it begins by citing his years in the Moluccas and his return to [p. 65] Portugal with the confiscation of his property, as well as his presence in the Sancti Spiritus of Elcano at the time it sank, as we shall see later. (See document No. 2 in the Appendix). When we read its contents, we can affirm that it deals with the first document on the preparation of the Return Trip, which establishes the fundamentals on how it should be undertaken, and then it starts to outline very important details such as the size of the ships or the quality of the provisions.
On the arrival of Alvarado’s fleet in Santo Domingo, as mentioned previously, Urdaneta gets to know and has dealings with Gonzalo Fernandez de Oviedo, who at that time was governor of the Island and who in his Historia General y Natural de Indias is profuse in his praises for him: “When I was writing the final clean version of the first part of these histories for the second printing, the governor general of Guatemala, Don Pedro de Alvarado showed up in this city, and in his company were Captain Andres de Urdaneta and Martin de Islares; because according to Alvarado, he was planning to fit out a fleet that same year, in the Mar del Sur, bound for China and other parts; and these noblemen, as I stated in the preceding chapter, had been in the Especiería for some time and they have a great understanding of this area, and I informed them that at that time, the Adelantado Alvarado was in the city. I took advantage of the knowledge of these persons; because this captain, aside from being skilled in the art of the sea and the heavens, he spoke well, and being a wise person, he applied himself to learning about those lands and islands of the Especiería where he had lived in those years. And undoubtedly, it is believed that the emperor will be well served by his experience; and the governor general, when he launches his armada, can receive wise counsel on where he intends to go or send his ships”[42].
From Santo Domingo, after a brief stop in Honduras, Alvarado proceeds to Guatemala, where he is governor. In August 1540, Alvarado prepares a powerful armada in Iztapa with 13 ships, manned by more than a thousand men, which proceeds to “Acaxutla, a port on the Mar del Sur, from where he should begin his voyage in search of the seven cities”[43].
The troubled relationship between Alvarado and the viceroy Mendoza leads to the suspension of the expedition. Alvarado was known to be undisciplined; [p. 66] furthermore, in marine matters, Mendoza preferred Ruy Lopez de Villalobos who was married to a niece of his. An unexpected mishap settled the dispute.
In 1541, a dangerous uprising of the natives breaks out in Nueva Galicia and its governor, Cristobal de Oñate, seeks the help of Alvarado who has the resources of the expedition at his disposal. The Adelantado comes to his rescue, and among the officers he brings with him is Urdaneta, as related in his service record[44]. In the course of events, Alvarado dies in an equestrian accident on the rocks of Nochistlan, which finally leaves Villalobos in command of the new expedition to the West although the preparations and the launching of this fleet were supervised by Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, an important man in shipbuilding and of whom we will speak of later, and how his family later declared: “he dispatched the armadas of Villalobos and Bolaños before sailing on his expedition”[45].
An idea of the interest that existed in reaching the Moluccas was the fact that in 1537, Cortes secretly sent Hernando de Grijalva there. Through Antonio Galvao, then governor of the Moluccas and author of “Tratado dos descobrimentos”, only a few details are known about what happened to this expedition. It appears that after wandering around the South Pacific, the crew mutinied and killed Grijalva and later disembarked in New Guinea where they were seized by the natives and later on, Galvao himself would rescue 7 survivors.[46]
Ruy Lopez de Villabos sails on 1 November 1542 from Puerto de Navidad[47] with 4 ships, a schooner and a brigantine, manned by 370 men, under his command. After navigating for 8 days, they pass the islands of Nublada and Rocapartida (which belong to the islands of Revillagigedo) and on Christmas day they cast anchor in the small island of San Esteban, part of the archipelago of the Marshall Islands, which they name Los Corales.
On 23 January 1543, they reach an island which they name Los Mataloles and which pertains to the Carolines. The location of this island is 9º 50’ north and 140º 30’ east. Here they are welcomed by the natives in Castillian. Because of the location of the island, it may be assumed that the expedition of Saavedra had made landfall there. [p. 67] Three days later, they catch sight of another major island of the same archipelago which they name Los Arrecifes, which at present is called Yap.
Finally, on 2 February, they reach Mindanao in the Philippines. This implies an average velocity of 4 knots for the entirety of the voyage, a very good average for that epoch.
On 4 August 1543, Villalobos dispatches the San Juan de Letran, under the command of Bernardo de la Torre, in search of the return route. He stops in Leyte to take on provisions and finally departs on 26 August. He leaves the archipelago through the San Bernardino Strait and sails toward the northeast.
After navigating for more than seven weeks, on October 18, they reach 30º north, but the strong headwinds force them to stop. At this time of the year, the winds already blow from the north in this zone; proof of this is that the return voyage to the Philippines is completed in two weeks.
Once this ship is overhauled and repaired, Villalobos once again attempts a return voyage on 15 May 1545, this time under the command of Iñigo Ortiz de Retes, who, aware of the difficulties of the route towards the north, sets a southward course. He coasts along New Guinea and some of the surrounding islands but, once again, the adverse weather conditions force him to return on 27 August.
You must bear in mind what these dates imply: at this time, we are in the middle of the austral winter. During this period of the year, the correct course should have been precisely the northern route. The Castillan expeditionaries were still unaware of the climate conditions of the Pacific.
On the return of Ortiz de Retes and given the precarious condition of the survivors, Villalobos surrenders to the Portuguese and comes to terms with them concerning the repatriation of his crew. However, a few days later, Villalobos himself dies after falling ill from fever on the island of Ambon in the archipelago of the Moluccas. The news of this new disaster reaches Spain with the 144 survivors of the expedition.
Among these survivors were four Augustinian friars who return to Castile after the death of Villalobos, through the Cape of Good Hope [p.68] in 1548. They immediately re-embark to proceed to Nueva España, and there, Urdaneta undoubtedly establishes contact with them and receives favorable news about the Far East.
Having succeeded in finding the return route, and with the consequent establishment of a settlement there, it seemed the next one to go would be Urdaneta who was being expected in 1544, according to Capitan Jorge de Castro in a letter dated 10 February 1544 to his king Juan III[48].
After a period of adventures with Alvarado which were more or less appertaining to war, Antonio de Mendoza, who is the royal representative in Nueva España, offers Urdaneta a position of responsibility on 6 February 1543, specifically in the region of Avalos which today encompasses the northeast part of Michoacán as well as the south of Jalisco and Colima.
Soon after, and seeing the merits of Urdaneta, the Viceroy promotes him to the position of Inspector, which means rising another step in the wage scale of civil servants. This post would allow Urdaneta to become familiar with the ports of Navidad and Acapulco, as well as the entire north coast of Nueva España, knowledge that would serve him well when the time came to prepare the Return Trip.
An important document exists on the activities of our hero as an Inspector during those years. It deals with the narrative that Urdaneta prepares, after listening to the survivors of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo’s expedition about the vicissitudes of this voyage[49].
This expedition sailed sometime after that of Villalobos and in a certain way, it was envisioned that they would be complimentary. In those years, it was still believed that America and Asia were connected in the north, and while Villalobos should cross the Pacific and later ascend in latitude along the Asiatic coast, Cabrillo would do so by the coast of America and at some point they were supposed to meet.
But Cabrillo also had to find in the high latitudes of North America a passage that would link the Pacific with the Atlantic, a passage whose existence had not yet been proved but already had a name: the Strait of Anian.
Because the expeditions that had sailed toward the north had succeeded, Cabrillo had received reports about the existence of “men like us” in the interior of [page 69] California. Actually, the expedition of Francisco Vazquez de Coronado that had left Mexico in 1540 had reached Rio Colorado, 240 kilometers east of San Diego[50].
We already know the fate of the expedition of Villalobos; about Cabrillo’s expedition, we can say that it reached 41 degrees latitude north, up to the present Cape Mendocino, named in honor of the Viceroy Mendoza, and that after a surfeit of calamities including the death of Cabrillo himself, the expedition returned to Puerto de la Navidad.
After the arrival of the rest of Cabrillo’s fleet, the viceroy Mendoza sends Juan de Leon, notary of the Real Audiencia of Mexico, to prepare a report on what happened to the expedition, based on the diaries and statements of the survivors. This report has disappeared, possibly fuel for the flames in Peru, where Mendoza must have brought it.
In the meantime, Urdaneta arrives in Puerto de la Navidad as Inspector during the investigations. As a superior authority, he prepares his own report[51], requesting for different testimonies. Indeed, a detailed analysis indicates that this was put together on the basis of various sources, beginning by copying the diary of Cabrillo up to the point where it ends. Later, other sources are utilized, which could have been statements of the survivors and maps: it is interesting to note that Urdaneta was mainly preoccupied with the description of the accidents that took place on the coast[52].
Strategic points such as the island Posesion will be recognized on the Return Voyage by Urdaneta and Rodrigo de Espinosa. This island had already been mentioned in his memorandum of 1559, “a record of the items I believe it would be useful to bring to the attention of our King”[53]. From all the preceding, we can deduce that in 1542, Urdaneta had already mapped out his plan for the Return Voyage.
The document is unsigned and various authors have attributed it to a certain Juan Paez, whose name is found in the front page, but this indicates that he received the document in the Court of the metropolis since he was a secretary of Carlos I, and had never been to America. The syntax as well as the handwriting are very similar to other documents of Urdaneta.

[p.70] In 1547, our hero is appointed Admiral of the fleet that the Viceroy of Nueva España sends to pacific Peru; the grand-master was Cristobal de Oñate. Shortly before sailing, they receive news that the rebels had been defeated and their leader, Gonzalo Pizarro, was decapitated which meant the cancellation of this undertaking.
After these events, in 1548, Urdaneta prepares his record of “merits and services” in which he asks for a commission: “…that in the name of His Majesty who has ordered him, he asks and pleads that they be kind enough to include him in the distribution”[54].
Only four years later, Andres de Urdaneta joins the Augustinian order in the convent of the City of Mexico. But there is no doubt that he continued with his activities, particularly those that concerned the discovery of new lands. We have proof of his distinguished participation in the ill-starred expedition of Tristan de Luna y Alvarado to Florida[55] between 1559 and 1564.
On the other hand, the “very special collection of log-books ” addressed to Philip II in 1561 and which we shall analyze in detail later, mentions Pedro Menendez de Aviles, as able a mariner as he was tough and ambitious, a protégé of the King and future conqueror of Florida, as being qualified to explore the Northeast Passage which is 70 degrees in latitude north.
The Northeast Passage, frequently mentioned these days as the cause of global warming, and the possibility of utilizing this in the near future as a way of navigating directly between Europe and Asia, and its consequent importance was already known to Urdaneta. In 1610, the Englishman Richard Hakluyt, author of an encyclopedia on discoveries, cites Urdaneta in glowing terms as one of those who had navigated through the Northeast Passage, according to accounts of a nobleman named Salvatierra who had met our hero in Mexico. More important than the issue of whether he had navigated through the Northeast Passage is the fact that he had evaluated its correct measurements and is aware of its existence and importance.
In 1548, once news is received of the failure of the expedition of Ruy Lopez de Villalobos, the Cortes of Castilla that had already expressed its opposition to the Moluccas undertaking [page 71] in accordance with the treaty of Zaragoza of 22 April 1529, requests Carlos I to recover those lands. This is mentioned by López de Gómara in his Historia General de las Indias:
“The Emperor was asked many times to redeem those islands, since with the profit of a few years the cost would be compensated, and even in 1548, the representatives of the Cortes while in Valladolid, asks the Emperor to recover the dominion of the Especiería for six years by leasing it, and that they would pay the King of Portugal three hundred and fifty thousand ducats and they would bring the treaty to la Coruña, as they were ordered to at the beginning; and that after six years His Majesty would continue to enjoy his rights over this territory, plus his dominion of Flanders where he was at that time, but he stated that if this was not authorized by an act of the Cortes, they would not speak any more about this, at which all of them marveled, some felt sorry and everyone kept quiet”[56].
During those dates, the economic potential of the Islands, and the military deployment of the Portuguese there, was already well known in Castilla. The reports of Urdaneta in this respect were very complete and were brought up to date by the survivors of the expeditions of Saavedra and Villalobos who had already returned.
At that moment, from the military point of view, it would have been relatively easy for Carlos I to establish control over the islands of the West, particularly the Philippines, where there were no Portuguese detachments. The outward route from Nueva España was perfectly known and much simpler and operative than the route of Africa utilized by the Portuguese. Nevertheless, the Emperor did nothing.
To understand this apparent disinterest of Carlos I for the Especiería, one must consider the family relations, woven over several generations, between the two crowns of the Peninsula and, specifically, the dynastic confusion regarding the Portuguese crown. Gregorio Marañon would name this the savage consanguinity:
“Doña Isabel la Católica was the daughter of Doña Isabel of Portugal; married to Don Fernando de Aragón, they married off their daughter Isabel to Don Alfonso de Portugal and, when he died, to King Don Manuel. With the death of Doña Isabel (after [p.72] giving birth to Principe Don Miguel de la Paz, who should have inherited both kingdoms but died as a child) the widower Don Manuel married Doña Maria, another daughter of the Catholic kings, with whom he had several children. Widowed once again, he married Doña Leonor, his niece, the daughter of Doña Juana la Loca and Don Felipe el Hermoso. One of the children of Don Manuel and Doña Maria, Don Juan III married Doña Catalina de Castilla, another one of the daughters of Felipe el Hermoso and Doña Juana la Loca; and another daughter, Doña Isabel, was wed to Carlos I, son of the same Don Felipe and Doña Juana. One of their children, Felipe II married his double cousin Doña María, daughter of Juan III and Catalina of Castilla; and Doña Juana, married Don Juan of Portugal (son of the same Juan III and Doña Catalina); they were the parents of the luckless Don Sebastian. Finally, when this Don Sebastian died, arrangements were being made for his possible marriage to Isabel Clara Eugenia, daughter of Felipe II and Isabel de Valois”.[57]
Having died without descendants, as it had been foreseen, the Infante Juan, who was the cousin and brother in law of the future Felipe II, since he was already married to Juana de Castilla, sister of Felipe II, on the death of Juan III (1521-1557), whose wife Catalina was the sister of Carlos I and therefore, the aunt of Felipe II, the crown of Portugal, including the Especiería, would have passed on to him by right of dynastic succession. This took place… a fourth of a century later, when the ill-fated king Sebastian, the posthumous son of the Infante Juan, passed away in Alcazarquivir in 1578.
The start of the preparations for the Legazpi-Urdaneta voyage coincides with the time of the enthronement of King Sebastian de Portugal in 1557, when he was four years old. At that time, Felipe II realizes that the annexation of Portugal through dynastic succession, if unsuccessful, could be delayed. at the very least, for decades. The bankruptcy of the royal coffers, however, made it more urgent than ever to obtain new financial resources.
On 24 September 1559, having recently returned to Castile (he had made his entry in Valladolid ten days earlier) after an absence of more than five years during which time he was in England and Flanders, Felipe II sends a royal decree to Luis de Velasco, Viceroy of Nueva España, which is the key to understanding all the subsequent events.

[page 75]

Antecedents and Preparations

Although the order issued by Felipe II to the viceroy Luis de Velasco[58] may be considered the pistol-shot that set off the final implantation of Spain in the Philippines, it is very clear that the project was being developed and was under study for the past several years.
The first study we will make use of is a report of Urdaneta for the Viceroy Velasco[59] already cited previously (see appendix of documents No. 2), which is unsigned, but its authorship cannot be doubted since it gives an account of the years spent in the Moluccas and because it gives a detailed report of the shipwreck of the Sancti Spiritus of Elcano and also states that the author was there: “And later when we reached the entry to the strait, we lost the largest and the best of our ships, after the flagship, on board which was Juan Sebastian del Cano and also myself”.
The document discusses in great detail the difficulties encountered in the voyage between Castile and “the islands of the West”, both the outward as well as the return voyage, because of the choice of making the voyage from Nueva España.
The document expresses, with a great wealth of details, the difficulties of the passage through the Strait of Magellan, because it becomes very difficult to cross at the correct time [p. 76] since one must first navigate through the calm equatorial zones with the uncertainties they present. And to undertake this passage at the wrong time is very dangerous because of the strong storms that whip through those waters. Aside from the long distances in the case of the return voyage, it mentions the difficulty of reaching the entry to the Strait of Magellan from the Pacific because of the cross current that goes from the south to the north throughout the coast of Chile and Peru. It deals with a current which Señor Humboldt names two centuries and a half later, but our hero was the first to discover and refer to it.
As a consequence of the long voyages, the problem of scurvy arises, and its solution: “in this sea of the West, the long voyage causes the men to develop a sickness which causes the gums to swell and putrefy; many die from this sickness, and on only one of our ships, forty men died during the voyage from the strait up to the islands, and even those who sailed from Nueva España for the Especería did not fall sick since the voyage was short and they had fresh provisions, and they are not as susceptible as those who travel from Spain through the strait”.
It also explains the reasons for the previous failures, attributing them to the size of the ships and to their ignorance on the proper time to undertake the voyage; the facts are conclusive: “in an ocean as vast as that which lies between the Especiaria and Nueva España where one does not have to pass through a strait or go around points of land, or avoid sand banks or currents that obstruct, there is no reason to think that there is a way to sail from Nueva España and no return route”.
The problems that could arise because of the presence of Portugal in those places are solved very diplomatically: “I do not touch here on what happened and could happen to the region of the Portuguese, because it is certain that by the time His Majesty orders the launching of an armada for the Especiaría, the issue of ownership will already be settled between His Majesty and the King of Portugal”.
The document ends with an evaluation of the yields of those islands, above all on what refers to spices.

[p.77] The second report is a complete dossier on all the aspects of the voyage[60] (see document No. 3 in appendix), such as the size of the ships, the provisions, armaments, crew and navigation, with its proper dates, and ends once again with a summary of the benefits that may be derived from those lands.
This document is undated and unsigned and it is noted that several persons were involved in its preparation, but in its most important parts, the hand of Urdaneta is evident. The final report about the economic yields of the “Especiería” is very similar to the reports that Urdaneta had written on his return from the Moluccas, and in addition, the references to navigation, as we shall see right away, reflect certain references time-bearings which he would later use and in the long run would turn out to be correct.
Undoubtedly, this is the document that Felipe II acknowledges he received in his letter to Luis de Velasco58.
This second report begins by citing criteria for the selection of the crew: “Before everything else, one must recruit pilots and seamen who are skilled at their craft, and if possible they should leave their bonds in Castile or in the Indies. This is understood to apply to everyone, but not to Portuguese or Galicians, because for the voyage, it is not advisable to bring them”.
It goes on to a subject as prosaic as armaments: “These ships must be armed with bronze weaponry because the humidity in those areas makes it toilsome to use those of iron. And if possible, they should be furnished with a dozen bronze falcons with their chambers, that the Portuguese usually provide for each of their foot soldiers. These weapons are very good for this purpose. They should also bring two dozen double versos of bronze with triple chambers”.
The dossier continues with a long list of provisions and their corresponding quantities, such as fish, salted dried meat, etc. Without forgetting the fresh provisions such as kidney beans, beans and chick peas, and as we stated earlier when we referred to the other report59, Urdaneta already leads us to conclude that he is aware of the relation between scurvy and the lack of fresh food.
He does not omit the contacts to establish in the Philippines as well as in the Moluccas, citing the names of the different local chiefs and the [p. 78] bad practices of some of them: “Thus it is advisable that each night, the small boats be placed over the cables of the ships with some alert men armed with flint-type of harquebus, because they usually try to cut the ropes so that the ship may keel over”.
But, possibly, the importance of this document lies in its description of the variety of merchandise traded between the different islands of the zone and with China and Japan, as well as its schedule of shipments, because it provides information that may be relevant for the interests of the future Galeón de Manila.
He mentions a certain Theatine cleric named Cosme de Torres who resides in Japan with some of the survivors of the Villalobos expedition and who could be of great assistance in a possible stopover there:
“And it is very important that have contacts in advance, since the business is very important and someone who could be of great help to us is a cleric named Cosme de Torres, from Valencia, a Theatine, who is in these islands of Japan converting the natives, and who was with us in the year forty two. Also in these islands are some Castillans, among them pilots and seamen, who will come with us later when they know that we are there and will provide great clarity on what exists there and what advantages that land may offer”.
Although it was usual during those first years of the existence of the Society of Jesus to confuse the regular Theatine clerics and the Jesuits, this paragraph should be emphasized: the Levantine Cosme de Torres joined the Society of Jesus at the hands of Francis Xavier in Southeast Asia, after having reached the Moluccas with the expedition of Villalobos while he was still a secular (The known reports only mention the presence of four Augustinians in the expedition). During the preparations for Alvarado’s expedition, the matrix for Villalobos’ expedition, Urdaneta, as the navigator in charge, got to know Cosme de Torres. He had accompanied Francis Xavier on his voyage to Japan in 1549 and remained there as the responsible head of the Jesuit mission, until his death in 1570, carrying out his work in Yamaguchi, Kagoshima, Bungo and Nagasaki. Those who like Urdaneta, at the end of the 1550 decade, were establishing the Spanish presence [p.79] in Southeast Asia, were aware of the potential value of Japan and the possibilities it offered as the hypothetical port of call of transoceanic voyages and also in preventing Portuguese implantation in the area.
The interest in Japan is nothing new; Elcano had already expressed his desire to go there when he was with the expedition of Loaysa and we have mentioned the possibility that Urdaneta may also have been there[61].
From a purely technical point of view, making a port of call in Japan will greatly expedite the voyage because in line with Urdaneta’s plan of navigating through the north, with a minimum deviation, they would be able to take on provisions and water, after having traversed a third part of the entire route.
Sailing from Japan on the first days of July will guarantee the arrival in Nueva España without encountering any problems: “and what His Majesty and these kingdoms have desired for so many years will be fulfilled, and for which so many men have died and so many millions of ducats have been spent”.
This dossier ends in the same way as the previous ones, citing the economic potentials of the Islands of the West.
But we shall go back to the decree of Felipe II to Velasco58, wherein the king begins to accept the different recommendations of Velasco with respect to technical questions on the voyage and the ships, “with the least possible cost to our treasury”. He continues by making it clear that this voyage is fundamentally mercantile in nature “and you must try to bring back some spices, and undertaking the voyage as a trial, you will return to Nueva España so that it may be ascertained that the return voyage is achievable and the cost of this voyage can be determined”.
The destination is definite: “and you will instruct the persons who will be sent that in no case should they enter the Moluccas Islands so as not to violate the agreement we have made with His Serene Highness the King of Portugal, but may enter other adjacent islands, such as the Philippines”.
Felipe II most probably knew that the Philippines was also within the Portuguese demarcation: the Moluccas and the Philippines are practically [p.80] on the same longitude. But he also knows that there are no Portuguese in the Philippines. In appearance, it respects the Treaty of Zaragoza, but he has no intention of complying with its terms. The plans that are already being made confirm this intention.
Moreover, Felipe II orders the inclusion of Urdaneta in the expedition and encloses a personal letter for him[62], which was written in a considerably different way from the dry bureaucratic language he uses with Velasco. Urdaneta is indispensable because what is being attempted is to find a way to return to the East through the Pacific, the only manner of consolidating the Castillan presence there. “Give all the necessary orders in order to achieve the desired objective as you have been informed and as you understand it. And the most important instructions you should give them are not to tarry on transactions or rescues, but to immediately return to Nueva España, because the principal objective of that journey is to establish the return route, since it is already known that the outward voyage is completed in a short time”.
The element of surprise is fundamental, and thus great discretion is necessary. The order ends with a severe reprimand to Velasco: “Matters of this kind should not have been revealed to many persons, as we understand has been done, since you had our authority to undertake the voyage of discoveries you desire. From this time forward, you are warned to be more secretive on similar issues, because this creates obstacles”. We do not know the exact nature of the leaks of information due to the indiscretions of Velasco, but we have reason to suspect that some details relative to the preparations for the expedition, which were just beginning, had reached the Iberian Peninsula.
Luis de Velasco receives the King’s letter on 21 April 1560, and on the 28th of May of this year, he replies to it, enclosing Urdaneta’s letter and his long technical report, which form a set of documents that are essential to gain an understanding not only the expedition but also of the future Galeón de Manila.
In his letter of reply, Velasco observes all the royal orders, gives an account of the construction of two ships in the Puerto de Navidad and, most probably, not knowing if the ambiguity of Felipe II with respect to the existing agreement with Portugal was due to technical ignorance or a calculated intention, he presents the king with a kind of ethical excuse to go to the Philippines, that [p. 81] succinctly reproduces Urdaneta’s point of view, with whom he shows a total concurrence. It discussed the necessity of rescuing the victims of shipwrecks of earlier expeditions.
Finally, Velasco humbly excuses himself from the accusations of having divulged too much about the preparations and notifies the king that, for the purpose of concealment, he ordered that the equipment of the ships as well as the armaments, be deposited in Acapulco; a bay distant from the Puerto de Navidad and at that time still unknown throughout the world. Not so for Urdaneta, who had kept his eyes on Acapulco in order to establish the oriental base of the new route there.
This conspiratorial phase of the expedition, very much a result of the actions of Felipe II, has been overlooked or ignored by many of the authors who have studied this matter. Nevertheless, it is evident when one sees the documents, and highly important in order to gain an understanding of the developments of a sufficient number of facts. Aside from this first exchange of letters, the main protagonists are able to conceal the final destination of the expedition under the generic stock-phrase of “the islands of the West” and specific references to the Philippines disappear.
Together with Velasco’s letter, Urdaneta sends his response to the king[63]. In his response, he accepts the mission and indicates his knowledge of the destination and the conditions of the expedition. “Don Luis de Velasco has informed me of the mandate of Your Royal Majesty relating to matters involving the navigation of the voyage you have ordered toward the west”. In addition, he includes a short curriculum vitae: “When Don Antonio de Mendoza was Viceroy, I was recommended for positions of responsibility, in matters concerning the war as well as in time of peace. And after I entered the Religious order, I was also occasionally given important tasks in the service of Your Majesty by your Viceroy Don Luis de Velasco”. He also indicates his age: “with regard to my age, I am over 52 years old”, which confirms that he was born not long before May of 1508.
Urdaneta attaches to this letter a report that contains a declaration of intent[64]. It is fitting to ask why this report, stripped of almost all the trappings of protocol, constitutes a different document from the formal letter accepting the mission. One of the possible reasons [p.82] is, of course, that of security: Urdaneta had personally experienced the methods of the Portuguese when he returned from the Moluccas and he probably intended to minimize the serious diplomatic problems that the document could generate in case it was intercepted. In the letter wherein he accepts the mission, he does not make any mention of the details; the report, however, is clear.
In it, Urdaneta openly acknowledges that the Moluccas, like the Philippines, are within the area covered by the pledge of Carlos I with the king of Portugal and presents the excuse that Velasco gives to Felipe II for going to the Philippines; which is, to rescue shipwreck victims, whose real existence they do not appear to be convinced of. It also recognizes the objectives: “in order to accomplish the most accurate report possible on what will be newly discovered, such as the longitude and the route between Nueva España to the Philippine Islands and the rest of its region, so that it can be ascertained up to where the 180º longitude extends in the demarcation”.
The viceroy Velasco sends a report on 9 February 1561 through a person who had his complete confidence, Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, which would be completed orally before the King. It gives an account on the status of the construction of the fleet and the designation of Miguel López de Legazpi as commander of the expedition. According to Velasco, this appointment greatly pleased Urdaneta: “a more qualified person could not have been selected and this pleased Fray Andres de Urdaneta, who will manage and guide the journey, because they are from one land, kinsmen and friends, and get along well”. The official appointment of Legazpi would take effect on 9 July 1563 although this had been decided on two years earlier. Andrés de Urdaneta must have known about this.
From the time of his arrival in Mexico, Urdaneta had established close relations with Viceroy Mendoza and later with Velasco. It can be said with certainty that it was Urdaneta who had convinced them of the possibilities of returning through the Pacific, even on a wagon, as Fray Gaspar de San Agustin quotes him as saying. It is probably Velasco who calls the attention of Felipe II to the merits of Urdaneta, since he had not returned to Castilla for the last two decades and this is why he does not know the king personally. However, the king [p.83] always wants to have first hand information and he could rely on the recommendations of various close friends of the Ordizian friar who were among his secretaries and yeomen .
Together with the cited report of Velasco, Urdaneta sends his own[65] [see document No. 4 in appendix], in which he accepts his functions to “manage and guide the journey”. This report is divided into two parts. The first discredits Puerto de Navidad, which had been founded by Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo on 25 December 1540[66] as the base for the expeditions to the West and proposes Acapulco as its alternative. The second part is a pilot book of the Pacific.
The argument presented by Urdaneta in favor of Acapulco instead of Puerto de Navidad is based on criteria identical to those that are taken into account these days when considering the location for a new port. He evaluates the salubriousness, the size, depth of the water, the logistics (possibility of planting hemp for the cordage, and trees to provide timber for the hulls) and, above all, the land transport.
You must bear in mind that during that epoch, the most sophisticated equipment, especially arms and ironworks, had to come from Castile to Veracruz in the Carribean, and from there overland to the Pacific. The distance from Veracruz to the Puerto de Navidad is more than double the distance to the port of Acapulco. The failure of subsequent administrations to convert this terrestrial link on time, as proposed by Urdaneta, into a convenient and modern route is believed by contemporary specialists as one of the major factors that limited the enormous economic potential of the transpacific route.
In the section that refers to logistics, Urdaneta does not forget the human element: “And because many of the officers/clerks, carpenters, blacksmiths, sawyers, shipwrights, rope makers and other workmen engaged in other occupations who are needed for the preparation and maintenance of the ships and the armada refuse to go to the ports on the West ocean, it is necessary that these persons, and other seamen who are needed for this purpose be compelled to go, by offering them a good compensation, each one according to his category, so that they may agree to go to where they are needed”.

[p.84] In brief, Urdaneta’s report deals with a point of view that condenses modernity and pragmatism at the time when designing the arrangement for a commercial undertaking with great objectives. An arrangement that is definitely complex, because it already envisions a regular line. For example, Urdaneta recommends that when the first expedition is launched, construction of new ships should begin, and that trees should be planted, anticipating the need for the fundamental raw material required for future naval construction. Almost certainly, he remembered the serious problems in this area that arose in Guizpúzcoa in the XVIth century.
The second part of the report is a pilot-book of the Pacific titled On the voyage that must be accomplished. In it, in relation to this age of departures, he proposes three different routes that may be followed between Nueva España and the Philippines. One must emphasize however, that the three routes end in the Philippine archipelago, because this was the destination ordered by Felipe II in his letter to Velasco dated 24 September 1559.
For Urdaneta, the first route is the most preferable. It is the best known; both Saavedra as well as Villalobos had already used this route in their voyages to the west. It is also the most direct route; it passes through low latitudes and by taking this route in winter, the danger from storms is avoided. It is undoubtedly the route closest to the wishes of Urdaneta: “It appears to me that the voyage we must undertake, with the help of God, from Nueva España to the West, should take place at the beginning of October”.
In this route and because of his strategic location, after two thirds of the voyage, Urdaneta glimpses the possibility of establishing a logistic base on the island of San Bartolome, now known as Taongi, which he had already seen and situated during the voyage of Loaysa: “it is certain that if a settlement were to be established on this island, it would be of great advantage as a port of call, even if it were to be populated by delinquents who deserve to be sentenced to death or to perpetual exile”. Once again, Urdaneta is ahead of events because in 1668, a Jesuit mission is established in Guam and in 1681, Antonio de Saravia is installed as Governor. A fort is built with a permanent garrison of 20 men[67]. Different European powers would apply these formulas centuries later in various areas of the Pacific.

[p.85] From San Bartolome, Urdaneta recommends going on to Botaha, the present Guam, which he is already familiar with; and from here, to navigate toward the west and reach the Philippines. The distance from Taongi to the Philippines is around 2,518 miles. Urdaneta gives us a figure of 690 leagues, and considering that a league converts to 17.5 leagues per degree, it would come to 2,360 actual miles. He is off by 6%. This shows a strikingly precise knowledge of the Pacific.

The second option is based on another hypothesis on dates of departure: “but if we cannot leave Nueva España until after the tenth of November and then until the twentieth of January or a few days after”. These are the dates when the weather is bad in the first zone and to avoid this, he recommends navigating toward the southwest until reaching 26 or 30 degrees south, where one can expect to find New Guinea, although he is not certain: “I have with me one of the modern charts that have come to Nueva España which shows the coast as being much longer than it is by 100 leagues”. In the charts of that time, the coast of New Guinea extends toward the southeast almost up to the Strait of Magellan.

With this route, Urdaneta attempts to kill two birds with one stone; on one hand, it escapes the winter by navigating toward the south and, on the other hand, it makes good use of the trip to explore new lands. An option that was always attractive for a man like Urdaneta, but does not make him forget the ultimate objective of the expedition: “the said coast of New Guinea, and if time will permit it, we shall later sail and discover what part that appears to us , but we must remember that we have to try to arrive in the Philippines at the latest by the start of November”.

This choice of the south route will provide a considerable margin of time for the exploration of New Guinea, which Iñigo Ortiz de Retes had already visited 18 years before in his attempt to return to Nueva España from the Philippines. But after having coasted only up to 5º South, there was no indication of the actual extent of the island. Urdaneta, as a finishing touch to this possible route, explains: “we have more than enough time to discover the said coast of New Guinea and many other islands, if there are any”.

The third option is for a departure in the spring: <
From here, it heads toward the west, passing through China and Japan, or directly to the Philippines. He points out both possibilities: “and from here, we shall sail for the islands of the Philippines without veering toward the West”, is the first possibility. And the other one: “we shall go from this point, which as I said is thirty or so degrees, in search of the Philippines, and we shall find our bearings depending on where we find ourselves”.

The plan for the departure ends here. But this should be modified for the return voyage, which is the primordial objective of the voyage. The outward route is already known, but the return has not yet been successfully put into practice; however it is the indispensable condition for the establishment of a stable dominion in the Philippines. Urdaneta tackles the plan of the return voyage, as follows:

“I have planned these voyages in this manner, in the event we cannot depart at the start of November, we must start out from Nueva España, because a late departure from here means that we will not have time to accomplish what His Majesty orders and to prepare for the return, so it is advisable that we leave as soon as we can without waiting for clear and good weather to start the voyage back, because the good weather does not last long, and for this reason we must depart from there so that when good weather comes, we could be in the Islas de los Ladrones, instead of waiting in the ports of the Islas Filipinas for the hurricanes, even if we have to make this voyage through the strength of our arms, because if we do not do this, we might experience the fate of previous voyages or we might have to wait for another year which would be very unsuitable because in the waters of the Islands, there are many maggots/worms that cause the ships to rot, and also because the Portuguese might hear about us, which would [p.87] be detrimental, and in addition, to remain for a long time with the natives of those Islands is something that should be avoided. And the Spanish as well, when they remain too long, tend to create situations that prevent friendships from lasting long. Although we must always avoid all obstacles that could be harmful to us, this is particularly important on this voyage”.

The voyage through the north had been attempted twice by Saavedra, and by Bernardo de la Torre later, but not on the correct date. In a voyage of this length, it is necessary to adjust the time of passage through each zone so that this will coincide with favorable weather. With much more reason on the west coast of the Pacific which is dominated by the monsoons, which are seasonal winds. The key lies precisely in these factors.

The rising importance of Urdaneta before the King becomes evident in the last paragraph of the letter: “And if it seems that in this connection there is some reasonable thing needed for your Royal Service, ask that it be carried out, because even the Viceroy Don Luis de Velasco will be very careful with regard to these matters, yet if it will even better serve the purpose of His Majesty, he will so order it”.

The preparations were delayed more than reasonably expected, up to the 21st of November 1564, when the expedition finally sailed. The difficulties were numerous and complex, since, as Urdaneta had already indicated in 1561, Puerto de Navidad did not have the conditions required to fit out an expedition of this magnitude.

At this point, it is necessary to carefully analyze the question of the expedition’s final destination, since there exist three documents from 1564 that could engender doubts on this matter, and in fact have given rise to diverse interpretations. These are the following: Carta de la Audiencia de México al rey, dated 12 September 1564[68]; Relación que el capitán Juan Pablo de Carrión, Almirante de la armada que va a las islas del Poniente, hace al Rey D. Felipe sobre la navegación de dicha Armada ha de llevar, that is not dated but must have also be written on September 1564;[69] and Instrucción de la Audiencia de Nueva España a Miguel Lopez de Legazpi para el descubrimiento de las islas del Poniente, dated Mexico 1 September 1564[70].

The viceroy Luis de Velasco died on 31 July 1564 and until the designation and take over of his successor, the government of Nueva [p.88] España lay in the hands of the Audiencia of Mexico, a collective judicial organization imbued with ample powers.

The letter of the Audiencia notifies the king that Luis de Velasco, on the suggestion of Urdaneta, had ordered Legazpi to proceed to New Guinea because “the Philippine islands, like the Moluccas, are also included in the pledge”; which means, they pertain to Portugal. But that they, the magistrates of the Audiencia, had revoked this order and send Legazpi to the Philippines.

However, no documental evidence is known to exist on the supposed order of Luis de Velasco to Legazpi. And what hits the eye is that this is in direct contradiction to all the correspondence exchanged between the king, Velasco and Urdaneta during the initial phase of the preparations, between 1559 and 1561, wherein the Philippines was never mentioned as the destination.

For a full understanding of the apparent confusion, it is advisable to remember that since that initial phase, the final destination of the expedition was considered a secret. It is logical to assume that very few were in on the secret, after the king had reproached Velasco in his letter of 1559. Urdaneta, exposed to the ways of devious diplomacy by the three and four sides that he had to face during his stay in the Moluccas, it may be assumed that he was used to the art of managing information, and his writings give proof of this. It seems reasonable that Velasco may have succeeded in carrying out some diversionary maneuvers, besides the loading of artillery in Acapulco. With regard to Legazpi, he necessarily had to know all the fundamental issues, in accordance with his great responsibility. In the ill-fated antecedent of the expedition of Luna to Pensacola, he had to carry his own weight against some protagonists very close to him.

The personages of the Audiencia, who almost certainly did not know the details of the genesis of the expedition, could have been victims of a secret plot which circumstances later on obliged them to act on. And although it was not radically rejected, it hardly seems probable that an organization composed of men who were absolutely ignorant on matters concerning navigation, would decide on its own and makes such an important and last-minute modification in an operation that had been planned for years and in which the king was the principal interested party.

[p.89] The account of Juan Pablo Carrión also states that Urdaneta attempted to go to New Guinea, an island that he did not find interesting. In addition, he [Carrion] considers such a destination as being very hazardous, because in making the return trip through the north, a greater distance had to be traversed. He also shows a great enmity toward Urdaneta. This paragraph is very significant: “I only state here the substance of the difference of opinions we have had, which is the reason why I believe they are leaving me here. Because Padre Fray Andres has categorically stated that he will not embark if the armada goes where I say. And since Miguel Lopez de Legaspi, who will act as General, is from his nation and land and is his intimate friend, he wants to please him in everything”.

It is possible that Carrion actually believes what he says, but the bitterness that can be observed in the letter obliges one to give credit where credit is due. On the other hand, even if he was one of the initial proponents of the expedition and would play an active part in its preparations, it seems quite evident that Velasco kept him away from the decisive core of decision making, the inner workings of which he seems to be totally ignorant of.

In all his writings, Urdaneta fixes the Philippines as the final goal, although he knows that these islands are clearly part of the pledge agreed on with Portugal and almost certainly harbors an identical certainty in what refers to the demarcations established by the Treaty of Tordesillas. The reasons presented to Felipe II to be able to dodge the conditions of the pledge signed by Carlos I show that Velasco and Urdaneta had accurately guessed what Felipe II had almost certainly intended, in the same way that the lack of any mention of a possible repurchase of the hypothetical rights of Castilla which had been pledged in Zaragoza, denotes that they are perfectly aware of the fact that the Castillan coffers were empty.

The few doubts that the viceroy and the Augustinian could possibly have about the intentions of the king must have vanished, when, after unequivocally warning him about the geographical facts concerning the plan and inviting him to have these facts confirmed by experts in the Peninsula, Felipe II responds with silence. After this moment, the only comprehensible scruples could be those of Urdaneta with respect to the violation of the Treaty of Tordesillas, which had been ratified by the Pope.
[p.90] If, to cut a long story short, both Carrión and Urdaneta intended to go to the same place, what is the real reason behind the dissension? The bottom line seems to be that Carrión, as ambitious as he was marginally qualified, was expecting to command the expedition; not only does he fail to attain this, but he would remain on land. The heading of his account is expressive: it is entitled “Admiral of the Armada who goes to the islands of the West”.

After the sharp reprimand of the king, Velasco had already taken steps to cover up the objectives of the operation, depositing armaments and equipment in Acapulco. Later on, however, with the ships already prepared and at the time of recruiting the troops and crew, it was much more difficult to maintain secrecy. The Treaties of Tordesillas, and above all, that of Zaragoza, were about to be violated: it was of prime importance that the Portuguese become aware of these occurrences after they have been accomplished. Using New Guinea as an excuse was perfectly believable and its becoming so widespread makes it more deserving of suspicion.

On 1 September 1564, the Audiencia issued sealed instructions to Legazpi for the voyage bound for the Philippines and emphasized that, being extremely secret, the notary Captain General had to open while out at sea. We shall study this document in the next chapter.

The fleet sets out for the open sea in the early hours of dawn on Tuesday 21 November 1564, initiating the longest voyage that any man had accomplished until then. On the eve of the voyage, Urdaneta writes another letter to the king[71], which clearly has the tone of a last farewell: “I am leaving with a great confidence that God our Lord and Your Majesty will be greatly served by the success of this journey”. He takes advantage of this opportunity to recommend that his nephew Andrés de Mirandaola accompany him on this voyage as Clerk of the Real Hacienda [Royal Treasury], who he seems to suggest should be the beneficiary of the gratitude that Felipe II indubitably owes him. Urdaneta asks nothing for himself.

It is evident that, convinced of the viability of the return trip, he believes it is probable that he, approaching the age of 57, will not succeed in coming back. But, inverting one month for each year spent in the adventures of the past 40 years, Urdaneta

[Page 93]

It is learned that the outward trip can be completed in a short time

There exist four log-books of the voyage from Puerto de Navidad to the Philippines: that of Esteban Rodríguez, pilot of the San Pedro and Piloto Mayor,[72] that of Rodrigo de Espinosa, pilot of the San Juan[73]; that of Pierre Plum, second pilot of the San Pedro[74] and those of the two second pilots of the San Juan, Jaime Martinez Fortún and Diego Martin[75]. In addition, there is the Report of the occurrences on the voyage and journey of the armada of His Majesty under the command of General Miguel López de Legazpi in the discovery of the islands of the West, of May 1564[76], which is anonymous but, because of the knowledge demonstrated by its author, seems to have been written by Legazpi himself or by Hernando Riquel, scrivener of the Home Office.

The expedition, as we know, was led by Miguel López de Legazpi, who is on board the San Pedro together with the head technician and navigator Andrés de Urdaneta. The San Pablo, which is the flagship, is under the command of the grand- master Mateo de Saz; the advice boats are headed by Juan de la Isla who is a brother of Rodrigo de Espinosa, pilot of the San Juan, and Alonso de Arellano, the San Lucas. In addition, the fleet carries a small brigantine that is towed by the San Pedro.

[p.94] The principal passengers are the following: Hernando Riquel, scrivener of the Home Office; Juan de Carrión, lieutenant general; Martin de Goyti, captain of the infantry; Luis de la Haya, sergeant major; Guido de Lavezares, treasurer; Juan Maldonado, captain of the artillery; Andrés de Ibarra, lieutenant major; Andres Cauchela, accountant; Andrés de Mirandaola, clerk, and a translator named Gerónimo Pacheco, native of the Philippines.

The expedition was composed of 150 seamen, 200 soldiers, 4 Augustinians (Martín de Rada, Diego de Herrera, Andrés de Aguirre and Pedro Gamboa), aside from Urdaneta. There were also some servants. All in all, 379 persons[77], although another anonymous report exists[78], which is quite succinct, that states the total as 450 expeditionaries.

At the moment of departure, Legazpi gives some instructions to the captains for the ships to sail in convoy[79]. The instructions cover the logical norms of sailing in convoy: all the ships should follow the flagship; they should approach it every morning to receive orders; it establishes the signals to be used in case of danger, passwords in case of poor visibility, and rules for security such as watching the fire. Swearing is greatly prohibited as well as games of chance, and they end with the rationing of water and food. This meticulousness is maintained throughout the outward and return voyage. Nothing is left to chance.

The armada leaves Puerto de La Navidad on Tuesday, the 21st of November 1564 at 4 in the morning on a southwesterly course. On Saturday, the 25th of November, at 1500 hours, Legazpi assembles all the commanders to open the instructions relative to the destination. At this moment, all the pilots concur on the latitude as being 15º North, the distance traversed from time of departure being approximately 320 miles or 93 leagues, although both Esteban Rodríguez and Rodrigo Espinosa cite greater distances, 108 and 116 leagues respectively.

The instructions of Legazpi are clear and concise. The expedition is proceeding to the Philippines and they should descend up to 9º North, sailing to point west to southwest; that is to say, to bearing 259º (the 360º of the mariner’s compass is divided into 32 points, and each point is 11º 15’). Based on this parallel, they should set their course due west until the destination. He indicates the meeting places in the event a ship should be lost, which are the islands already discovered on previous expeditions.

[p.95] Legazpi is complying with the instructions received from the Audienca of Nueva España to the letter, which, as already mentioned, are categorical with respect to the destination and objectives of the expedition. The outward course from Puerto de Navidad during the first four days does not encounter any appreciable delay. He sees to it that the armada loses latitude rapidly in order to avoid storms, since the season is very advanced, and in order to conceal their destination, a cover up that must be maintained until the return. The following paragraph of the instructions of the Audiencia to Legazpi is very clear:

”To the person or persons you will assign as head of any ship or ships, you will pass on the instructions I give you that upon arrival at any port or part from Nueva España, that all letters that are in the ship should be gathered, without leaving even one, and together with yours, to prepare a document addressed to this Real Audiencia, closed and sealed and placed in a safe place, so that, having seen your letter and understood what you had written, they should relay it to the others who would come, and not before, because of the disadvantages that could arise and even reveal matters concerning discoveries before reporting these to the persons who are acting in the place of His Majesty. Aside from this, you will give instructions and greatly urge the principal person you will send on said ship or ships that, until they receive advice from this Real Audiencia that they know of their arrival and have received the letters, no one should be allowed to go on land, and if he does, none of those who come with him should communicate with any Spaniard or any other person from Nueva España; nor should he speak or consent to say anything new about the lands where they had been; nor about what they brought and what happened on the voyage, in any way or manner”[80].

The document from the Audiencia does not only contain instructions concerning the voyage; it also gives directions on how to deal with the natives. The priority is that the occupation of the Philippines should be done in an absolutely peaceful way. All the instructions inspire optimism. It is assumed that this voyage would be the last one, and therefore, an attempt is made to optimize the results and the yield.

The Relación de los acontecimientos del viaje y jornada que hizo la armada de S.M. al mando de General Miguel Lopez de Legazpi en el descubrimiento de las [p.96] islas de Poniente. Mayo de 156576 confirms that the instructions of the Audiencia to Legazpi should be opened when they are 100 leagues out at sea. On this point, the Relacion states:

“This was felt strongly by the priests who were with the armada and thought they had been deceived, and said that if they had known or understood the direction of the route, they would not have gone on the journey for the reasons that Padre Fray Andrés de Urdaneta had given in México”.

We have already seen previously that very few knew about the real destination. It was a secret on which the entire operation and its final success depended on; the element of surprise is fundamental to the establishment of a settlement in the Philippines. From the paragraph cited here, it can be deduced that the four other priests were not aware of the destination, but we have also seen that Urdaneta did know, and this Relación only mentions something he had said in México, but with a great deal of ambiguity. The papal authentication of the Treaty of Tordesillas was undoubtedly a problem for some Augustinians who were quite adept in cartography and astronomy, at least in the case of Aguirre.

From the moment the instructions were opened at a point close to 15º North and 110º West, the route proceeded toward point west to southwest until descending to about 9º North. From this time, the route runs due west. It is now December 18; up to this point, the voyage has proceeded without any untoward incidents except for the desertion of Alonso de Arellano on the advice-boat San Lucas, in the evening of November 29, with the intention of taking credit for the discovery of the return route which he had heard about on the expedition. Evidently, he was ignorant of the complicated inception of the operation and his adventurism was at the point of costing him dearly.

On December 28, Pierre Plum states in his log-book that they had passed the island of Los Reyes without having seen it. Based on the distance that he mentions on his dead-reckoning in his log-book, he was still a thousand miles from there. On this same day, he tells Urdaneta that he had seen the Polar and noted the latitude of 9º 20’ North. He makes a suggestion that is not accepted. From this day, they swiftly proceed northward in order to ascend to 10º North.

[p.97] Finally, on 8 January 1564, at the hour of 6, the San Pablo fires the cannon to advise that land is sighted on the SSE. The fleet sails toward the south during the whole day but, since they lose sight of the island, after sailing for 4 leagues, they continue toward the west. The following morning, they see another island and head for it. They name it the Isla de los Barbudos, and approach it; it is part of the Mejit atoll in the Marshall Islands, positioned 10º 15’ North and 170º 52’ East. Being a very steep coast they see it is impossible to cast anchor there in spite of “finding the bowsprit on land” as the report states and a group led by Urdaneta disembarks on the brigantine. The pilots are in accord in marking out a latitude of 10º North. The party goes back on board with some provisions at 10 in the evening and they continue with the voyage.

The following day, they sight another large island, which Legazpi names San Pedro and San Pablo. It is part of the Ailuk atoll, which is composed of a multitude of small islands. The distance between Mejit and Ailuk as estimated by the pilots coincides with the real distance, about 35 miles. That afternoon, they see a small island named Jemo, which Legazpi calls Isla de Los Pájaros. It is evident that they are in the Marshall Islands. The latitude, the distance between islands, and the drawings of these islands done by Esteban Rodriguez and the pilots of the San Pablo, all coincide.

From the port of Navidad, they had covered 4,992 miles in 1,180 hours, meaning an average velocity of 4.2 knots. Undoubtedly a good speed. These 4,992 miles are 1,459.6 leagues, at about 17.5 leagues per degree called in Spanish “de pié real”, which were arrived at both by Urdaneta as well as Alonso de Santa Cruz, who by this time was chief cosmographer of the Casa de Contratación de Sevilla.

Of the four log-books, the most exact was the one of Pierre Plum, with an error of 3.5 leagues. Nevertheless, on the 28th of December, he had noted that they had already passed these islands. It seems that he adapts the log-book according to the occurrences. About the others, both Esteban Rodríguez and Espinosa state they have covered less distance, 1,354 and 1,396 leagues respectively. Only the second pilots of the San Pablo pass; according to them, the fleet had navigated 1,554 leagues.

The explanation for these differences should be found in the cartography they use. In their letters, they state that the Marshall Islands are not situated correctly. However, [p.98] Urdaneta said “that it is not very important that these islands and reefs are the Jardines and which Villalobos discovered, even though we found them farther than where we thought they were and we also had not found the route as indicated by the points/degrees, and that these seemed to in the same […] altitude as and near the Philippines, others in Matalotes”80. Urdaneta knows where it is like Pierre Plum, but our hero can locate the point in the correct chart and Plum cannot.

From the Marshalls, they continue west up to the 17th of January when, at the suggestion of Urdaneta, Legazpi orders that they gain latitude up to 13º in order to make landfall over Mindanao in the Philippines. Villalobos had already landed there and had encountered serious problems in going round the capes of this island due to the currents in that zone. In addition, Urdaneta is eager to go to the island of Guam, the largest one of the Islas de los Ladrones. We have proof of the precision of his calculations in the fact that on the 21st of January, he advises that they are near Guam, and on the 22nd at 11 in the morning, they sight it.

On this day, the pilots declare that they had reached the Philippines. Urdaneta asks the mast-men about the shape of the sails of the native boats they see on the horizon; when they reply that they are triangular in shape, his position is reaffirmed. Sure enough, they were in the Ladrones Islands.

The distance between the Marshalls and Guam is about 1,501 miles, which they undertake in 317 hours, denoting a speed of 4.7 knots. This time, all the pilots give out a lesser distance than the actual one; they try to justify the difference between their figures and Urdaneta’s by citing the occurrences between Puerto de Navidad and the Marshalls.

The expedition stays in Guam for about eleven days, up to the 3rd of February, to take on provisions and water. During their entire stay here, the natives try to deceive them with a great profusion of tricks, but the experience of earlier voyages has taught them to be alert. Even if and despite their having repeatedly shown the natives that they had come in peace, in a moment of negligence, the natives assassinate a cabin boy in a very cruel way. This creates repercussions on the part of the expeditionists and gives rise to various violent incidents.

As Urdaneta had already recommended[81], this report speaks of the possibility of establishing a logistic base in Guam. Moreover, he writes a [p.99] report on the crops cultivated there, the characteristics of the houses, fishing and minerals, even mentioning the presence of sulphur.

On the 3rd of February, they set sail to complete the last stage of the voyage. This is carried out without any incidents, and in the morning of the 13th, they catch sight of the Philippines.

They have covered a total of 7,623 miles in 1,750 hours of navigation. This means an average of 4.35 knots for the entire voyage; a speed that is not to be scoffed at for that epoch. We can say that they had mastered this outward voyage. Even Felipe II noted this in his letter to Velasco.

At the start of the voyage, during the first day’s run, the charts of the pilots showed more leagues than were actually navigated. Only Urdaneta is conscious of the real situation, and this is why he remains conservative in his estimates. The arrival in the successive islands serves to verify the exactness of the calculations of some and, having seen the results, everyone adapts to Urdaneta’s. At the end of the voyage, some have calculated a lesser figure. The 7,623 miles actually navigated are 2,229 leagues; Plum calculates a total of 2,060, and Espinosa 2,024 leagues.

The expedition enters the Philippines over the island of Samar, which Plum calls Tandaya. Based on the descriptions of the pilots and on a map drawn on their log-books by Martínez Fortún and Diego Martín, we can conclude without any doubt that the point of arrival is the island of Tubabao on the coast of Samar, situated on latitude 12º07’ and 125º33’ East. It must be emphasized that Magellan had reached the Philippines making landfall at this same point. The expedition remains here, establishing amicable relations with the natives and exploring the surroundings, until the 20th of February 1565.

On that day, they set sail at 6 in the morning, coasting toward the south. In 24 hours, they round point south of Samar so that, several hours later, they cast anchor in the gulf of Leyte, which they baptize with the name of San Pedro. They again explore the surroundings, dealing with the natives and attempting to obtain all possible information. In this zone, because of the great misgivings of the natives, some confrontations take place which result in the death of a servant of [p.100] Martin de Goyti. In his explorations, he sights the channel that separates the islands of Leyte and Samar, but thinking that it was a river, he does not enter it.

On March 5, they transfer anchorage and proceed to Cabalian, where they do not feel safe because of the currents in this bay, since it is situated in the middle of the strait of Surigao. One evening, the flagship drags its anchor in a substantial manner, producing some tense moments. Moreover, the natives appear to be very mistrustful and try to avoid selling them provisions.

Because of this state of affairs, on the 9th of March, after consulting with the officers, it is decided to go to the island of Mazagua, now called Limasawa, which is on the extreme south of Leyte. The reason for proceeding to this island lies in the fact that its king, on earlier expeditions, had been hospitable toward the Castillians. On their arrival, they attempt to cast anchor between Panay and Limasawa, but they do not find good anchoring-ground and they have to remain on watch for an opportunity the whole night.

In the morning, Legazpi sends an expedition on land; once again, Urdaneta joins the group. The only native they encounter escapes from them. Moreover, the native they see does not conform to the description given by Bernardo de la Torre who was with the Villalobos expedition, and they decide to proceed to Camiguin, after sending four natives, who had come aboard, back to their houses.

The chronicles of earlier voyages praised to the skies the hospitality of the natives of this area; on finding the opposite, Legazpi begins to worry and suspect that in some way, they have been corrupted.

On Sunday, 11 March, at 1800 hours, they cast anchor on the west coast of Camiguin. Once again, the natives flee from them and Legazpi sends Martin de Goyti and Andrés de Ibarra to go around the whole island. Once they had done so, they report that there is no port that deserves to be called a port in the island and “no proof of the existence of cinnamon was found nor any indication of it, which was the commodity greatly desired”. Economic interests prevailed at all times.

Cognizant of the situation, Legazpi orders that they proceed to Batuan, a port on the north of Mindanao, this being the center of trade where the Chinese and [p.101-chart. P.102] Malays come. The currents and the bad weather drive the fleet to the coast of Bohol where they cast anchor on its southeast coast on the 15th of March.

Once in Bohol, Legazpi sends the advice-boat San Juan to Batuan under the command of Rodrigo de Espinosa. The reason for his selection lies in the fact that his boat is more navigable in unfavorable weather conditions than the rest of the fleet. The other ships remained anchored in a small cove nearby that had been discovered by Juan de la Isla on March 19.

In this inlet of Bohol, they begin to prepare the San Pedro for the return voyage under the supervision of Urdaneta, making use of the great quantity of timber available in this place. It becomes necessary to replace the bowsprit, a large lateen yard, a mast and a jib boom. It entailed, therefore, major repairs. Moreover, they also repair the bailing and all the sterncastle.

Shortly after they had been in this anchorage, a battle breaks out between the troops of Martín Goyti and the crew of a Bornean parao. The Castillians capture the vessel and six prisoners at the cost of one death and twenty wounded.

The prisoners speak Malay and Urdaneta is able to interrogate them; the pilot of the parao, who has much experience and knowledge about these islands and its inhabitants, is among the prisoners. He tells Legazpi about a raid conducted by the Portuguese of the Moluccas in these places two years before; he describes how they had burned and sacked quite a number of villages, capturing a great number of prisoners.

The incident explains the mistrust of the natives, who very understandably confuse the Castillians with the Portuguese. Legazpi makes use of this knowledge and the stories of this man, sending him to explain to the local chiefs the misunderstanding and making him the bearer of the message that they have come in peace. Little by little, their trust is restored and Legazpi tries to secure all possible information about the resources of each island, not only about the existence of spices but also of precious metals. He also sends the head pilot to explore Cebu and deal with the natives.

[p.103] After 15 days of traveling, the patache San Juan comes back from Botuan, where they had traded amicably, with samples of gold dust, some gems and spices, mainly cinnamon.

The frigate that had gone to Cebu returns on April 21 with good news and very favorable reports about the productivity of the area and the abundance of provisions found there. A Council is immediately convened and it is decided to establish their final seat in Cebu and, since the San Pedro had already been repaired, the following day they set off for Cebu, which they reach on April 27 at 10 in the morning.

The first party to go on land is lead by Urdaneta, who has the very important mission of negotiating for their final settlement. On May 8, they begin building a fort. At the beginning, the construction goes slowly, because the main task of all the expeditionaries is to supply the San Pedro with provisions for the return voyage which should be launched without delay.

Their stay in Cebu during the first days is not easy, because in spite of the agreements with the natives, some incidents arise. On May 23, Pedro de Arana is assassinated, and the following day Martín Goyti conducts reprisal measures in the village where the murder took place. These occurrences prove to them that it is necessary to speed up the construction of the fort.

The foundation for the final settlement in the Philippines was already established. Only lacking was a permanent connection with Nueva España.

The return voyage can be done in a wagon

[Page 105]

There are two log-books of the return route from the Philippines to Nueva España made by the pilots of the San Pedro, Esteban Rodriguez, chief pilot[1] works on his log-book until Friday the 14th of September, when he falls sick (he dies on September 27); and Rodrigo Espinosa[2], the second pilot. There also exist statements made by both pilots and Petty Officer Francisco de Astigarribia[3] at the request of Felipe de Salcedo, regarding the distance traveled and the total distance of the voyage; these will be discussed later. Felipe de Salcedo, the commander, 18-year old grandson of Miguel de Legaspi, is responsible for the voyage. Andres de Urdaneta is principally responsible for navigation, and is accompanied by another Augustinian, Andres de Aguirre, the two pilots and the Petty Officer. The Grand-master is Martin de Ibarra and the purser is Asensio de Aguirre. One of the most important trips of the Modern era, it has an obviously atypical direction; only the trust inspired by Urdaneta can explain a decision that on any other occasion would have been incongruous.
[p.106] The expedition left Cebu on 1 June 1565, well stocked with provisions for eight to nine months, according to Esteban Rodriguez, and had a small cargo of cinnamon from Mindanao[4]. Legazpi himself accompanies the voyagers for approximately a league.
As they leaves the canal between Cebu and Mactan, they take a northeasterly course up to the coast of Abuyo, presently known as the island of Leyte, following its coast northward. On their way toward the strait of San Bernardino, they pass between Masbate and Samar, a dangerous zone because of the great number of jutting rocks and reefs that exist there.
Casting anchor in the island of Almagro to re-stock on water and provisions, an incident involving the natives takes place but this is solved without any untoward consequence. They proceed farther north to go around the northern part of Samar.
At this point, Rodrigo Espinosa describes in great detail the voyage between the islands of Capol and Dalupiri, giving a latitude of 12º45' North; the actual latitude at this point is 12º25' N, showing an error of 20 minutes, which will serve us as reference to determine the accuracy of the astronomical observations of the voyage.
Arriving in Luzon, they observe that the Bulusan volcano is active and send a party to search for provisions. An incident involving the natives occurs here resulting in the death of one soldier. They gather provisions, particularly coconut, and begin the great crossing of the Pacific. The exit to the open sea is done between the islands of Luzon and Balicuatro, which they christen Ascencion at midday of June 9 while heading eastnortheast.
On the 21st at 6 in the morning, on the starboard side, they catch sight of the headland; it is Okino-Tori, also known as Parece Vela, located 20º North 136º east. The distance between San Bernardino and Okino-Tori is 816 miles, which in this latitude is equivalent to 228 leagues; the pilots declare it at 245 and 240 leagues, respectively. Again they commit an error in excess.
These leagues, measured in the equator, would have been correct; 238.6 leagues, to be exact. But they did not multiply them by the [p.107] cosine of the latitude, which is the existing relation between the measure of one minute's degree in the equator and the given latitude. In navigation, this is called increased latitude and is the consequence of the cylindrical projection of Mercator. Between San Bernardino and Okino-Tori, the resulting average velocity is 2.9 knots.
Starting from here, they continue gaining latitude in a regular manner, with favorable southern winds and a few days of calm but without any mishaps. After July, they encounter the currents of the Kuro-Shivo which accompany them throughout the entire voyage.
On July 9, Felipe de Salcedo, for no apparent reason, asks both pilots and the grand-master about the distance yet to be traversed; although we suspect that Urdaneta is trying to confirm his positions through de Salcedo.
On August 4, after several days of calm and variable winds, they reach 39º North for the first time, in a longitude of almost 170º West. From here they descend in latitude for the next 12 days, sailing in a southeast direction so that, on August 16, on latitude 31º30' North, they head east northeast to gain latitude. On September 4, they reach 39º30' North, the maximum latitude of the return voyage, on a longitude of approximately 139º West. The course by going around in a great circle between San Bernardino and Acapulco reaches only 34º North and has the same meteorological conditions as that followed by Urdaneta. Why then follow a course nearly 500 miles longer?
We do not know for certain what the reasons are for these changes in direction, with the resulting increase in the distance to traverse, because the diary of Urdaneta, who issues the orders, is not known to us and it is possible that not even he can give the answer. But it can be ventured that Urdaneta is trying to verify the longitude.
The maximum latitude reached in both changes of direction is the same as that of Toledo, one of the principal points of reference of the astronomical observations of that time. Urdaneta may have been attempting to determine a triangular position whose superior vertex would be the difference in longitude [p.109] between Toledo and the point in the Pacific where the ship was located, in order to derive the longitude. A better observation of the Guardas (stars of the Ursa Major that always point to the polar star) could have been the concrete objective of the changes. On the other hand, both occasions coincide with the days immediately following the new moon, when the distance in time between the changes in the phases of the sun and moon is less.
On 4 September, Rodrigo de Espinosa writes in his journal that he is being ordered to sail southeast, although he is of the opinion that they should head east southeast because “I found myself on land at 41 degrees, 118 leagues according to the figures in my chart."
The land situated at 41º is in fact Cape Mendocino. Nevertheless, he says that he has seen in the chart of Urdaneta that the distance to the same point is 270 leagues. Making an inverse estimate from the moment they see the island of Santa Rosa (facing the present city of Los Angeles) on September 18, it is decided that the distance arrived at by Urdaneta is the correct one.
And thus, on 18 April 1565, at 7 in the morning, they sight the island which they christen La Deseada. From the nautical point of view, the first documented crossing of the Pacific from west to east has been accomplished.
From this moment on, and within viewing distance of the coast, they descend with good speed propelled by stern winds and a favorable current. On Saturday, September 22, they pass the island of Cedros and on Wednesday the 26th, Cape San Lucas, at the extreme south of Baja California. During this time, the average speed is over 5 knots.
On 29 September they pass Cape Corrientes, and on the following day, they distinguish the coast of the areas around the port of Barra de Navidad. On October 1st they pass this port. Espinosa estimates that they have traveled 1,892 leagues from Cebu to that point. Salcedo orders him to continue sailing until Acapulco, and they arrive there on 9 October 1565.
There is an existing report of Urdaneta regarding the voyage; "On the return from Cebu to Nueva España, what should be stated is that we departed from where [p.110] our men remained on 1 June 1565 and on September 18, we saw land for the first time on the coast of Nueva España, which was an island that is called San Salvador and which is at less 34º minus a sesmo , and on October 1st we arrived at the port of Navidad, and not wishing to enter it, we continued on to the port of Acapulco because it is a much better port than the other and it is closer to Mexico by more than 45 leagues. We had great difficulty on our return, having encountered bad weather and with sick men on board. Twenty six men died before we reached port and after arriving there four more died as well as a native from the island of Los Ladrones who had been sent by the General, together with three other natives, from Cebu. As Captain, Felipe de Salcedo, grandson of the General, proved himself capable. I will not dwell on how Don Alonso de Arellano was separated from us on the outward voyage with the ship San Lucas, because he himself has reported on what happened during the voyage."[5]
Up to this point, the narration of the return voyage is ordinary because there are no obstacles. There precisely lies its merit, for nothing has been left to improvisation and the result is evident.
It is note worthy and clear proof of his authority that Urdaneta allows himself to judge his leader, Felipe de Salcedo.
It is not by chance that they set sail during the first days of June, because at this time, one can still take advantage of the favorable monsoon winds to gain latitude rapidly, for once they pass latitude 30º north, the predominant winds and current come from the west. In addition, the risk of encountering a typhoon is avoided since the typhoon season is between June and October. Urdaneta knows this well since this phenomenon originated in the north of the Mar de Moluccas.
For the reconstruction of the voyage, we have made use of the latitude given by the pilots, - as they are practically exact as proven when they are verified - and the distances they estimate for each day; but by multiplying them by the cosine of the median latitude of the voyage. With this method, verified every time we have exact distances (in the San Bernardino-Okino Tori route or in the descent along the American coast, for example) the voyage coincides in an almost exact manner.
[p.111] The distance between San Bernardino and Acapulco by full or orthodromic circle is 7,644 miles; this would be the shortest distance between the two points. The expedition traveled around 8,120 miles, owing to the changes in direction during the month of August. To get the average speed of the return voyage we have to calculate from the exit to the Pacific in the strait of San Bernardino to Acapulco. The average is 2.95 knots, a speed that we consider very notable for those times.
There are 340 miles from the port of La Barra de Navidad to Acapulco, the distance between Cebu and La Navidad is 7,464 miles, which translated to leagues at 17.5 per degree in the Equator, gives us 2,182.5 leagues. If we multiply this by the cosine of the latitude, we would have a distance of 1,978 leagues. As has been stated, on July 9, Captain Salcedo asked the pilots for an estimate of the distance between Cebu and the Barra de Navidad. Esteban Rodriguez gives 2,000 leagues, Espinosa 2,030 leagues and Francisco de Astigarribia, the boatswain, 1,850 leagues3. This gives us an idea of the exactness with which navigation was conducted then.
From 1512, following the Portuguese model in the Casa de Contratacion in Sevilla, the preparation of the Padron Real is begun. It deals with a map that is being completed with the latest information that is brought by the pilots of the different voyages of exploration who are interrogated regarding this matter. The Padron Real was an official secret document that was constantly updated, and copies were made only for Spanish sailors[6].
Only persons who are absolutely trusted -and Urdaneta is one of these- can avail of this information that is completely modernized. We have seen the notes of Espinosa of September 4; others make use of different charts; only Urdaneta’s is accurate, as will be seen later.
Some authors mention a navigational chart that may have been drawn by Urdaneta upon his arrival, showing the winds and currents during the voyage; nevertheless, he himself tells us in his report to Felipe II, which we will see in the following chapter, that he had used an old Portuguese chart. Besides, there are no writings of his to be found in the list of documents that were sent to the King[7].
[p.112] The absence of important nautical incidents during the voyage has been made clear; now we will look into the conditions of sanitation.
During voyages of that era, an incidence of 33 to 40% of scurvy cases among the crew and personnel of a voyage is normal; the lack of vitamins during voyages of this kind made itself manifest after 45 days of uninterrupted sailing. Nevertheless, during this particular voyage, out of a crew of 200, only 26 deaths occurred. Perhaps it is because of the influence of Chinese navigation that European travelers in the Pacific were beginning to realize that a diet that is richer in fruits can prevent scurvy; and the store of provisions on the return voyage presents indications of this.
Esteban Rodriguez notes that the San Pedro left port with provisions good for eight or nine months. It is evident that they were never threatened by hunger or thirst, and in spite of having traveled along the coast from September 18 to October 8, they never disembarked to get supplies or water.
On October 1st, Rodrigo de Espinosa seems to lament in his journal that, despite finding themselves before the Port of Navidad with a great number of sick men on board, Salcedo orders him to proceed to Acapulco. Urdaneta had already indicated his preference for this port because of its better location to connect with Mexico and the transatlantic route and the informative quarantine, imposed on instructions of the Audiencia, on the crew of returning vessels was easier to carry out in Acapulco.
It was not only normal but inevitable that the crew would return in a physically exhausted state. They had had little time and scarce opportunities in the Philippines to recover from the wear and tear of the outward voyage, and they had just completed another four-month voyage, the longest yet made by any European ship without putting in at any port. The decision to continue sailing for seven days more indicates that there were no serious problems.
On 8 October 1565, in the Bay of Acapulco, the way was opened for the first commercial route between the two continents.

[page 115]


The arrival of the San Pedro in Acapulco, led by Salcedo and directed by Urdaneta, aside from the logical celebrations, had as its first consequence the fact that Arellano, who had arrived three months earlier from no one knows where, would be tried for desertion. It became necessary for him to give long, drawn-out explanations in a report[8] that was more than a log-book, in which concrete data about navigation is given in more or less the form of a novel, in order to save himself from being severely punished.
After a short while, together with another friar called Andres de Aguirre, who would never be separated from him again, Urdaneta leaves for the City of Mexico, and after a couple of months' rest, they proceed to Veracruz, to sail for Sevilla, accompanied by Melchor de Legaspi, son of Miguel, who at that time was a councilor of the Ayuntamiento of the Capital.
When Urdaneta arrived in Sevilla during the first days of April 1565, it was public knowledge that the Philippines had been conquered by the subjects of Felipe II, with the consequent diplomatic conflicts with Portugal and, possibly, pangs of conscience on the part of others.
[p.116] Since the King had no intention of returning the 350,000 ducats to Portugal, thus annulling the Treaty of Zaragoza signed by his father Carlos I in 1529, nor did have any intention of losing the recently conquered territories, on 8 October 1566, he called for a meeting with the best Spanish cosmographers of the era, among them Urdaneta, to try to find justification for the Spanish occupation of the Philippines.
Those called, aside from our hero, were Alfonso de Sta. Cruz (senior cosmographer) Francisco Falero, Pedro Medina, Jeronimo de Chavez and Sancho Gutierrez. They prepared a joint document[9] that was signed by all and another individual document signed by each of them, with the exception of Francisco Falero.
In a solemn meeting before the Consejo de Indias, they were all asked to answer two simple questions.
The first was: if the Philippines fell within the Spanish demarcation in accordance with the division of the world made by Alexander VI and the Treaty of Tordesillas. The second was: if it was part of the pact that Carlos I had made in 1529 with Juan III, king of Portugal, for 350,000 ducats.
Everyone replied in the affirmative, that according to the Treaty of Tordesillas, the islands belonged to Spain but had been mortgaged to Portugal.
We now know that according to the terms of the Treaty of Tordesillas the Philippines and the Moluccas did not belong to Spain, because if the demarcation line had been fixed at 46º west longitude (on this both parties are agreed); adding 180º to reach the opposite demarcation line or anti-meridian, this would be 134º east. Cebu is within 124º east, that is to say, 10º within the area that belongs to Portugal.
It must have been difficult to communicate this harsh truth to Felipe II; thus they sought a formula to placate the King, even if only partially.
A superficial study of the diverse opinions will give us a more complete view of the question of the "Islas del Poniente".
[p.117] As for the "opinion of Urdaneta", we have two versions: the final one[10], and what may be an earlier draft[11]. (See doc. Appendix No. 5), which contains the same fundamental data.
In an exhaustive declaration, the most technical of all, our protagonist states that the islands had been mortgaged to Portugal but could be regained with money.
He attempts to show in two ways that the Philippines belongs to Castile according to the Treaty of Tordesillas. The first is by measuring the longitude of Cebu that Martin de Rada had made "in order to verify through the stars with the said instrument, the longitude from said city of Toledo, or its meridian, up to the meridian of said town of Cubu” (Sic).
This measurement, taken as it is, indicates to us that Cebu is within the hemisphere of Portugal, because 216º toward the west less the longitude of the demarcation line, which is 46º West gives us 170º, which means that Cebu is 10º within the zone of Portugal, which in fact is true.
His second method consists of measuring the differences in longitude between the diverse changes of direction through the Portuguese route, which is through the Indian Ocean, in two Portuguese charts that Urdaneta says he obtained in Lisbon in 1538.
In the draft, he makes no mention of the measurements taken by Martin de Rada but repeats his second method twice, decreasing the distances until Cebu is found within the Castillian hemisphere; he gives us, for example, a difference in longitude between the Cabo de Buena Esperanza and the Cabo Comorin (south of India) of 71º18', when the real measurement is 57-1/2º.
Curiously, Urdaneta explains the problem of the projections very graphically:
“And because the world is round or spherical, since sailing and discoveries are done on flat charts, [p.118] taking into account the routes through which they sail, this can be reduced to the corresponding degrees of longitude." But later, the necessary corrections do not produce the desired results.
Alonso de Sta. Cruz[12], Chief Cosmographer, and as such the person most knowledgeable on this matter, begins to analyze the information about the argument regarding the anti-meridian, studying the past from the time of the Catholic Kings with the discovery of the Canary Islands and the other islands of the Atlantic, as well as the conquests in the north of Africa.
Like Urdaneta, he gives his opinion, calculating the distances based on two directions, through the east and through the west.
It is said that in Guadalajara in Mexico, during the term of Mendoza as Viceroy, longitude was calculated based on an eclipse that took place in 1539, finding a 105º difference in the longitude between Toledo and that city. The correct figure is 99º.
For the distances of the Pacific, based on the sea charts of the different pilots, we see that some of them extend the distances and others exclude them.
For the eastern route, or the route of the Portuguese, Alonzo de Sta. Cruz uses the same method as Urdaneta’s coming up with identical results, causing both statements to seem to have been written by the same person.
A few days later he makes a clear declaration[13] that is complementary to the former, concerning the pledge and its political circumstances: "it does not befall my profession to determine it nor is it my intention to declare that sailing and entry from said line being prohibited, entry to the Philippine islands is prohibited, as well as to those other islands discovered or to be discovered, as contained in the demarcation of His Majesty, for this is beyond my profession and contests the declarations of knowledgeable jurists."
Pedro Medina[14] had already written the "Libro de Cosmografia" in 1538, "Arte de Navegar" in 1545 and "Regimiento de Navegacion" in 1563. His book "Arte de Navegar" was the most popular manual on navigation at that time and had been translated into French and English, and was very probably [p119] the book used by Urdaneta, given the precision of the tables of deviations it contains.
Medina’s opinion is very succinct and after some long-winded disquisitions and without scientific argument he gives us a difference of 168º in longitude between Cebu and the demarcation line and for this reason, according to him, there still remain 12º for Castilian jurisdiction. The problem is that, when analyzing this quantity, he says that there are 100º between Cebu and Puerto de la Navidad, when in truth there are 121º. For a man of his knowledge and diligence, this is a blatant error.
Jeronimo de Chavez[15] also measures the differences in longitude in Portuguese charts for the hemisphere of this country and along the west traces a triangle-rectangle in the Pacific whose hypotenuse has 2,000 leagues, and according to him the leg of a right-angled triangle will be the difference in longitude; he states as a known fact what exists between the line of demarcation and Puerto de la Navidad. He strongly insists that he has not calculated 2,000 leagues to avoid responsibility. With these methods he calculates that the islands belong to Felipe II by 1.5º.
Sancho Gutierrez[16] calculates the distances toward the east, based exclusively on the maps of Ptolemy, making adjustments to obtain a perfect 180º so that the islands fall within the Castillian demarcation.
As a second argument, he uses the distances of the pilots of the Legaspi-Urdaneta expedition to conclude, as Pedro Medina did, that there are more or less a hundred degrees in a difference of longitude between Cebu and Puerto de la Navidad; we have already stated that in reality, it is 121º.
From a study of all these opinions, we see a contradiction because the only one who does not make mention of, nor makes use of, the longitude of the Pacific is precisely the one person who has sailed it and calculated it "in situ", Andres de Urdaneta.
It is difficult to know with any certainty if the errors were deliberate but it is worth noting that the errors regarding the distance in the Pacific are the same; an error of 20% is considerable, even for the parameters of the epoch. A possible explanation then would be "reasons of state."
[p.120] As the formal protests on the occupation turned to action, on 17 September 1568 a squadron of Portuguese appeared in Cebu and requested Legazpi to abandon the islands on the threat of war. For a while there were a few bombardments but they were never able to land. In the face of Legazpi’s firm refusal, the Portuguese opted to abandon the islands.
The controversy continued for many years and Portuguese diplomacy began to finally achieve some success with the creation of the diocese of Macau by Gregory XIII on 23 January 1546, with jurisdiction over the Philippines; this drew protests from Castile, whose interests were satisfied when on 13 February 1578, the bishopric of Manila was created[17].
After declaring himself in favor of the King, we may assume that Andres de Urdaneta returned to his native Ordizia for at least some time, after being granted royal permission to return to Nueva España on 28 April 1567[18], when he proceeds to Nueva España with his inseparable companion, Andres de Aguirre, on 6 June 1567; they also bring with them a servant from his own province, Andres de Zubicueta[19].
As for the last year of his life in the convent of St. Augustine in the city of Mexico, nothing is known except that he died on June 3, 1568.

[page 123]



The first consequence of the verification done regarding the possibility of returning to America from the Philippines, as shown by Urdaneta, is the consolidation of the conquest of those islands by Castile of Felipe II.
As the San Pedro departs in search of a return route, those who remain behind suffer a great shortage of human and material resources. The first period is spent in a constant search for provisions, and in the face of the reigning pessimism, there are attempts at desertion, which are settled by hanging some of the would-be deserters. One of those hanged is Pierre Plum, a pilot of French origin.
In June of 1567, in view of the lack of news from the capital, Legazpi sends the galleon San Juan to Nueva España, under the command of Juan de la Isla, with several letters asking for aid and narrating their lamentable moral and material situation[20]. This would be the second return voyage, two years after Urdaneta's departure, but without the uncertainty of returning because the route is now reliable and transit stops can be made.
On 16 October 1567, the galleon San Jeronimo arrives in Cebu, but the hopes it engenders among the expeditionaries disappear when the disastrous state of its arrival is verified.
[p.124] It has taken the ship five months to arrive from Acapulco and during this time serious incidents have taken place. Upon its departure, the pilot was Lope Martin, who had been the pilot of the San Lucas when Arellano had deserted and who was one of the survivors of the expedition of Loaysa, a man of undoubted experience. But fearing punishment from Legazpi for his desertion, Lope Martin attempts to incite the crew to mutiny, take the ship to China and there engage in piracy. The mutiny fails and Martin is abandoned with 25 of his followers in a small island of the Carolines[21].
The return of the San Pedro is good news, but the additional mouths to be fed aggravate the problem of provisions. Legazpi sends expeditions to Panay and Mindanao in search of provisions but these fail and the problem persists.
On August 20, 1567 two Spanish ships arrive in Cebu bringing 300 men and 40 pieces of artillery. Heading it is Felipe de Salcedo, the very young grandson of Legazpi who at the age of 20 has already completed three crossings of the Pacific and shows that what for Magallanes was pure fantasy is now, after half a century, a reality, even routine, although the Philippines continues to remain immensely distant from the Iberian Peninsula.
Legazpi orders Felipe de Salcedo as head of the San Lucas on June of 1569 to carry reports to the King, but a few days later they encounter the San Juan, under the command of Juan Lopez de Aguirre, on its way to Cebu to bring news of Urdaneta's death in Mexico City. Both ships return to Cebu and on July 10, the San Lucas departs again under the command of Felipe de Salcedo[22] to bring several petitions to the King.
Upon reading said communications, Felipe II signs the royal dispatches that order the organization of a new fleet for a voyage to the Philippines. Among these is the one addressed to the royal representatives of Guipuzcoa[23], ordering then to collaborate with Juan de la Isla in the gathering of supplies. He also grants commissions to the expeditionists and regulates life in the Philippines.
[p.125] Meanwhile, in July of 1569, Legazpi decides to transfer to Panay and the following year fifty married couples arrive[24]; these are the first European civilian colonizers to reach the islands.
In 1570, the first attempt to conquer the bay of Manila is launched, under the leadership of Martin de Goity but this ends in failure. From Panay, Legazpi writes to the Viceroy of Nueva España on 25 July 1579[25]; in his letter, he plants the seed of doubt on whether he should remain in Cebu permanently, because it is the most suitable port for the purpose of exploiting the spices of the Moluccas spices, or whether he should go to Manila which is more practical for trading with China.
It would not be until June 24, 1571 that Legazpi finally decides in favor of the city of Manila, thus creating the foundation of what would become a great center of commerce in the whole of Southeast Asia for more than three centuries.
During the first years of the route, galleons descended along the coast of California, but the sinking of the San Agustin near Punta Reyes (entry to the bay of San Francisco) and the dangers encountered by the Espiritu Santo and the Jesus Maria near the Mendocino cape indicate that it would be prudent to keep away from the coast and make landfall directly in Acapulco.
This meant that the Manila galleons made few discoveries along the North American coast, despite their being welcome there; we have to take into account that the Manila galleons were primarily merchant ships manned by civilian crews.
It is important to note that the bay of San Francisco would not be discovered until the 6th of December 1595, by a Portuguese called Cermenho in an expedition ordered by the Viceroy of Nueva España[26].
Between 1596 and 1602, Sebastian Vizcaino also undertook several explorations, among them he explores the present Monterrey (California) that "has everything that can be desired of a transit port for galleons."[27]. Let us remember that the possibility of stopping at ports of call during a voyage had already been noted by Urdaneta[28].
Along this vein, Andres de Aguirre writes a letter to the Archbishop of Mexico in 1584 asking permission for "the exploration of the coast [p.126] beyond the 41º latitude, since it is extremely important and necessary in connection with the return voyage of vessels from the Philippines and other parts of the west. Even if the ships come to the port of Acapulco every year, they sight land along the coast and sail without losing it from view for more than 500 leagues, and at present there are no other ports or places where repairs can be undertaken”[29].
Nevertheless, some discoveries are made on the voyage from Acapulco to Manila since some galleons that traveled south had the opportunity of exploring the Marshalls and Palaos.
The second major result of the return voyage is the creation and consolidation of a regular line which, despite some ups and downs, will continue to exist for 250 years and will unite Southeast Asia with the Chinese Empire, the Spanish colonies in America, and through these, Europe, competing advantageously in some aspects, with the routes of the Buena Esperanza (Good Hope).
Because of the harshness of the route and the distance of those islands, there was always a great shortage of professional men of the sea, sailors. In many cases the only person who knew how to navigate was the senior pilot, bringing great prestige for the qualified. We have the example of the first voyage of Urdaneta and Salcedo.
If the first galleon route was Manila-Acapulco-Manila, the ramifications of this commercial exercise were extensive on both sides of the Pacific. Manila was the advance platform for trading with the closed Ming and Qing Chinese empires, and in a lesser measure, with a Japan that was emerging from an era of feudal wars. Acapulco, on its part, became the stopover for merchandise from the Orient to Mexico, Vera Cruz and the capital, even if communication by land in Mexico never reached an optimum state.
The flow of merchandise was always greater from Manila to Acapulco; however the return voyage always had more passengers.
In 1580 a new Manila-Peru route was attempted, but because of opposition by the Augustinian Francisco Ortega, the project was banned until 1779. In compensation, a new line of coastal trade and traffic was opened between Lima and Acapulco.
[p.127] Since the galleon trade provided a means for unloading excess Mexican and Peruvian silver, which was in great demand in the Asian market, it was used to buy products manufactured in the Orient which were of great value such as porcelain or silk. This commerce generated some great increases in value, and since the monopoly of this enterprise was in the hands of the inhabitants of Manila, this city grew rich and flourished in a spectacular manner.
Aside from this, an interchange of crops between the two extremes of the Pacific took place. Products from Mexico such as tobacco, cacao, corn, coffee and potatoes were brought into the Philippines. Livestock was also imported, such as cattle, although with little success.
According to Morga, "the galleon trade is so extensive and lucrative, being easy to manage because it only takes place three months of the year, Spaniards do not attempt anything else, so there is no labor nor agriculture nor do they work on or benefit from the gold mines. They pay no attention to the land, selling their haciendas to the religious who leave them in the hands of the natives who pay rent for the use of the land. There is little agriculture and internal commerce since they prefer to be intermediaries between the Chinese and Mexicans”.
At the start the Manila Galleon trade was absolutely liberalized, but soon royal decrees began to regulate it on the excuse that all trade should be for the royal interests.
With the passing of time, shipments became monopolized by a limited number of persons. In 1586, the galleon San Martin carried shipments for 194 different persons; 200 years later the cargo of the San Andres pertained to only 28.
A decree was issued in 1598 prohibiting royal officials from engaging in commercial trading, but there are countless cases where the order is not complied with, resulting in the enrichment of these officials.
In addition, construction and repair of the ships plying the route is done in Cavite, in the bay of Manila. In 1602, we learn that the galleon Espiritu Santo had been constructed there by Juan Tello de Aguirre. During the latter part of the 17th century, only a few vessels are launched in Siam or Japan.
[p.128] Philippine wood is ideal for naval construction, "teca" was used for the frames, and "molave" and "lanang" for other parts of the ship; Manila hemp was used for the ropes and riggings, and hemp cloth from Ilocos[30] for the sails. Considering the harsh conditions of the voyage, one can conclude that the vessels were of good quality indeed.
The valuable cargo of the galleons had always been desired by the British and the Dutch, although it may be said that the route was quite safe.
During the entire existence of the galleon trade, only four ships were captured: the Santa Ana in 1587, the Encarnacion in 1709, the Covadonga in 1743 and the Santisima Trinidad in 1762.
Nevertheless, the capture of the first ship, the Santa Ana, which took place on 4 November 1587, was a painful precedent because its cargo was very valuable, and weighing 600 tons, it could not confront the Desiré and the Content of Cavendish which only weighed 120 and 60 tons respectively; since it was completely without weapons, in spite of the resistance it put up for six hours, even resorting to throwing stones, its Captain, Tomas de Alzola, had to surrender to the British crew who were battle-hardened and much better armed.
Manila prospered while the galleon trade existed. With its disappearance, the result of the emancipation of the Spanish colonies in America and the invention of steamships, the city gradually languished; "The system was disintegrating, Manila was losing its importance in the commercial structure of Southeast Asia, and the old system was replaced by new routes. After the second decade of the 19th century, ships made the crossing directly from India to Hispano America and the same was done by those who sailed from China. Other traditional shipping lines inherited part of the Manila system. Canton replaced Manila, and trading between Japan and Manila became merely an auxiliary part of the principal traffic between China and India."[31]
On October 25, 1813, Ferdinand VII, on the recommendation of the "Cortes de Cadiz" decrees the suspension of the line, and in March of 1815, [p.129] the last galleon, with the historic name Magallanes, departed from Acapulco to return to its base, Manila.
But the fruits of the return voyage of the summer of 1565 had lasted until then. And its own disappearance was merely an announcement that the key to world trade was the Pacific.
With the passing of time it became very clear that the 1565 voyage had been the most lucrative investment ever undertaken by a King in this country.

[page 131]

ABATIR The departure of a ship from the course it should follow as direction they should follow, as an effect of the wind or current.

AMARRA Name generally used in ships for cords, cables and chains used
to control a vessel.

ARRIBAR To arrive at port.

BAUPRES A thick pole that protrudes from the front of a ship.

BERGANTIN Ship of medium size with sails and two masts.

BOTALON A spar that serves for lengthening the masts of ships with sails.

CABO Any of the cords used in a ship.

CAPA (a la) Arrangement of the sails of a ship to resist storms.

CAPITULACION Agreement or pact.

CARENAR To repair the hull of a ship to make it waterproof.

CASTILLO de A structure on top of the upper cover at the back section
POPA of a ship.

[Page 132]

CEDULA An order of the King issuing some measures/ruling.

COLACION Territory or part of a neighborhood that pertains to a parish.

CUADERNA Each of the ribs that form part of a ship's skeleton.

DECLINACION Astronomical coordinates that give the height of a heavenly
body over the equator.

DERROTA Route that should be followed to go from one point to another
at sea.

DERROTERO A book that describes a coast and its oceanographic conditions.

ENCOMIENDA Territory and the income it generates.

ENTENA Spar where sails are tied.

ESTIMA Calculation of the position of a vessel, taking into account the
routes and distances sailed.

ESTOPEROL Short nail with a large, flat, round head used for nailing
mast capes.

FALCON Antique firearm with low caliber artillery.

FONDEAR To drop anchor.

FRAGATA Ship of medium size, with three masts.

FUSTA Generic name given in the 16th Century to all smaller vessels/crafts.

GALEOTA Military vessel with oars and a sail, smaller than a galley,
with 16 to 20 oars on each side.

GARREAR Motion of an anchored vessel that is caused by winds or currents.

[Page 133]

GAVIERO Sailor who is assigned to works on the masts.

GOBERNAR To direct a ship by means of the helm.

LATITUD Terrestrial coordinate that gives the height of a point
between the Pole and the equator.

LEGUA Ancient unit of longitude that had several values.
(League) Urdaneta always uses 17.5 leagues per degree or
3.42 nautical miles.

LONGITUD The arc of the equator, counting from the first meridian to the point considered.

MILLA Unit of longitude. The nautical mile is equivalent to 1852 meters.

MONZON Periodic wind that changes every six months.

PARAO Minor vessel of the China Sea similar to the junk.

PATACHE A small vessel with two masts, used as an
auxiliary boat in fleets.

TENEDERO Place suitable for dropping anchor.

TIMON DE A wheel, in the modern sense. A rigid piece that turns on its axle.

VELA LATINA Triangular sail.

VERGA Pole that rotates over its center, where sails are attached.

VERSO Antique light artillery.

ZARPA Departure of a ship to sea.

[Page 135]

Document No. 1

Narration of the Expedition of Loaysa

37 Regarding the papers of Santa Cruz de Sevilla (In the center: S.C.C.M. and cross)

Narration that I, Andres de Urdaneta, relate regarding the Armada of Loaysa that departed for the Moluccas, is the following:

We left the city of Coruña with seven vessels, on the eve of the feast of Señor St/ James in the year fifteen hundred twenty five, and we reached the Canarias in seven or eight days where we took on supplies for the armada until August 13 and within a month and a half more or less, we came across a Portuguese vessel at the equinox and the Captain General ordered the advice boat to see what ship it was. And the advance boat having returned from said vessel, Don Rodrigo de Acuna approached with his ship and ordered a lombard soldier to fire at the Portuguese ship and when the captain of the advance boat who was a Santiago de Guebara from the province of Guipizcoa saw this, he and Don Rodrigo had an exchange of bad words. Then the flagship and the other ships approached the Portuguese vessel, and the Captain General honored them much and wrote letters for Spain with the ship-master of said ship and thus we parted from the said vessel and went on our way; we met with contrary winds and sometimes great calm and we continued this way until almost mid-October. At the end of this time we sighted an island called Santuateo that is on the other side of the equinox by more or less 3º and we supplied ourselves with water and killed many birds and caught a lot of fish and the Captain General and others ate a large fish, and many of them fell sick, but recovered after a few days. The Captain General asked for an investigation regarding what had transpired between Don Rodrigo and Santiago de Guebara. After receiving the report. he had Don Rodrigo removed and appointed Martin de Balencia captain.
[p.136] We remained for about ten more days in the island after which all seven ships departed passing by the coast of Brazil before arriving at Santa Lucia. We went along the coast for a few days, and on the eve of All Saints' Day we encountered a great storm and went off course, one and all. Afterwards we were able to join each other again and on the second day we were all together save for the lead ship. So we traveled in search of it, going from one port to another but never saw it again. And this was our route to the strait, following behind Martin de Balencia, until we arrived at the river of Santa Cruz. Captain Juan Sebastian spoke with the other captains and told them that it would be a good idea to enter the river and wait there for the Captain General and de Balencia. Captains Pedro de Bera, Francisco de Ozes, Don Jorge Manrique, Santiago de Guebara and Diego (ON THE MARGIN: 1) Covarrubias the fator fator (SIC){?} general, agreed that it would be good for all the captains and officers of the King to get together in the ship of Juan Sebastian to come to an agreement as to what should be done. And thus it was agreed that it was too late to repair/rig the ships in the said river and that they could lose much time passing through the strait, so that only the advance boat should enter the river to place a letter under a cross in an island -in case the Captain General should pass there- informing him that they were going on to the strait at the Puerto de las Sardinas to service the vessels and would await him there and help him supply his ship. And on a Sunday, thinking that we were entering the strait, we ran aground at the entrance of a river where we could all have been lost. Juan Sebastian ordered his advance boat to enter the river to find out if it was the strait and before they could do so, the tide rose and we departed; and as we saw that the "escuyfe" (skiff??) did not return, we went on and arrived at the mouth of the strait of the Cabo de las Onze Mil Birehenes. While we were anchored there, a storm threw all four ships near land. And the wind and the current grew so strong that we came across the ship of Juan Sebastian where I was heading, and upon leaving the ship nine men were drowned and the rest of us were saved through the mercy of God. Another day there was such a great storm that the ship was destroyed and all the merchandise and machines were swallowed by the sea, and when this storm subsided, Juan Sebastian joined the ship of Pedro de Bera to lead the ships into the strait; I went with him and before we could go into a narrow entryway, a strong wind caught us and we thought that we would be lost again. At midnight we lost all three vessels as well as the boats and we left with the ship of Pedro de Bera, leaving the caravels and went out [p.137] to sea. When the storm passed, we turned to enter the strait and went through an opening that would be an "un tiro de pramuro" in length and two stone’s throw in width; having entered, we saw the caravels anchored in a great bay. On land we saw some twenty Patagonians; since we had joined the caravels, we sent a skiff to land and they brought a Patagonian to the ship and we fed him and gave him water, silver and gold. He did not speak or make any sign until later in the afternoon when he indicated that he wanted to be brought to land, which was done.
One morning I was told to go with half a dozen men by land to where the "fator" general and the people from the ship of Juan Sebastian were to gather all the merchandise and supplies that had been saved, to comandeer these for when the two caravels went there to receive the people and the rest that had escaped harm, and going there, I saw the homes of the Patagonians, which were tents made of zebra pelts and contained nothing but their wives and children. It took us four days to arrive where there were people, during which time we thought we would die of hunger. On the same day that we arrived, the lead ship and Martin de Balencia and the advance boat entered the Cape of the Eleven Thousand Virgins and the advance boat came to land and when he found out that the ship had been lost, he did not delay, and with the Captain General left for the strait where the other ships were and Juan Sebastian was ordered to go with the two caravels and the advance boat to where we were to gather their crew, merchandise, artillery and ammunition. And so they came to where we were and we loaded onto the caravels all that had been saved, and after we had finished loading the cargo a great wind rose and we left, leaving behind the advance boat in a stream; we went through the strait and the lead ship was almost lost and abandoned by its captain and crew, and that of Pedro de Bera left the strait as also that of Don Rodrigo. Rodrigo was already captain on orders of the Captain General, and leaving the advance boat in the stream, we all went out of the strait except Pedro de Bera whose vessel did not seem the lead ship since the crew went on land and jettisoned it, which was a relief and thus they were able to take it out to sea and the Captain General boarded again with all the crew. Once they had left the Cape of the Eleven Thousand Virgins and the ship of Pedro de Bera did not appear, the Captain General ordered us to return to Santa Cruz River and there we repaired the ships that had been damaged and ordered Don Rodrigo de Acuña to go back to where the ship of Juan Sebastian had been lost and tell the advance boat that was in the stream that we were going to Santa Cruz and that as quickly as possible it should go there; he told him also to get his boat that had ran aground; they left the caravels for fear of the great storm. [p138] Don Rodrigo de Acuna replied that how could His Mercy wish him to return and be lost in the storm. The Captain General replied that it was necessary for him to return to recover his boat, because there were no others of its kind and Don Rodrigo asked why he was being sent to where he did not wish to go, but still he had to go and he went, took the boat that was given to him by those of the advance boat and went away and we never saw him again; nor Pedro de Bera. The advance boat arrived at the river of Santa Cruz after 20 days.
And so we supplied the lead ship and {?adobamos tres brazas (a measure) de quylla?} that were brought with broken planks and lead pieces, and we subsequently rigged the others and obtained twenty casks of fish in the river to carry on board the ships. Thus we departed from this storm toward the strait; and halfway down the strait or a little before, we saw many islands. Fator Diego de Cobarrubias and others died in this strait. From here on we found very good {puer__ incomplete word} many snow-covered large sierras and thus we passed through the strait during the month of May, the flagship and Don Jorge Manrique with his caravel and Francisco de Azes with his, and the advice boat.
A few days after passing the strait we encountered a great storm and we were separated from one another and we never saw each other again. After we left the strait the accountant Texada and the pilot Rodrigo Bermejo died and on July 30 the Captain General died, and having seen the secret proviso of His Majesty, Juan Sebastian dElcano became Captain General and his nephew Loaysa was appointed Accountant/Auditor general. The accountant of the ship also died and Bustamante replaced him, and in place of Rodrigo Vermejo, Martin Peres dElcano, brother of Juan Sebastian, was appointed.
Many others died (At the margin: death of Juan Sebastian/dElcano and others /on August 4, 1526)
On August 4 of the said year of 1526, Juan Sebastian dElcano and the nephew of de Loaysa, who was Accountant General, died; a certain Salazar was made captain and he appointed Accountant General Martin Yniguez de Carpiçano (word erased) who was the senior Alguaçil, and in his stead as senior alguaçil, Gonçalo de Campo. The treasurer of the ship Luzon also died and Gutierre de Tunion replaced him; at this time we were working hard at 14º or 15º "banda" of the N in search of Çipango, and the crew were overworked {?ansy del mucho trabajar de la bonba?}, that if we were without /(erased: le) [p.139] we were giving "bonbas" for another two hours. Belabored by the sea, with little food and very little water, with many men dying, we agreed to proceed on a direct straight path. And we discovered an island which we named San Bartolome although we were not able to take it. And after leaving this island after 14 or 15 days, at 12º we came to the Islas de los Ladrones where we met a Galician called Gonzalo de Bigo who had been with Magallanes and had remained there with others who had already died, or so he said. He came on board the ship and was a great help since he spoke the dialect.
There is nothing useful in this island; neither pigs nor chickens nor goats nor other goods save rice which is available in great quantities and coconuts, fish, salt, and coconut oil. They do not have metal weapons. (ON THE MARGIN iiii) They go naked and are parrots like the other natives. We took 11 or 12 natives from this island to give to the "bonba". After leaving this place, the Captain died and we named as captain Martin Yniguez de Garcuycano, who was the senior accountant. The ship-master also died and the boatswain Ynygo de Elorriaga replaced him.
At the end of about fifteen days since our departure from the islands, we arrived at the Celebes archipelago at an island called Vendanao, in a port called Bizaya, where we conversed with the natives. It is a land of gold and is well treated and respected by the other islands and by China. The natives are warlike and are always armed with swords and steel weapons. Cinnamon, gold and pearls abound here. There are many islands around it but the people of all these islands are very sly, treacherous and warlike. Thus we were never able to take these islands or word erased) supplies, so we departed. Forty leagues from here we saw another island called Talao, where the natives were friendly; they sold us rice, pigs, chickens, goats, fish and other supplies and the men were able to rest well here and we were able to supply the ships with all that was necessary, since we were still 50 leagues away from the Moluccas.
After fifteen days we departed to head for the islands of the cloves and the natives here told us that there were islands with much gold nearby. After four days we saw the island of Batachuca near the Moluccas, and we went to a place called Çamofa where we found a negro of the Portuguese who had fled{?} who told us that there were Portuguese
[p.140] there and had a fort with much artillery, ships and a large army of moros, natives who were friendly with them when they were needed. On this same day, Captain Martyn Ynygues de Carcuyzano sent us to see the governor of the place to ask him for a barge, crew and oars to send to the kings of the Moluccas on a secret mission and he replied that he would be pleased to do so.
When we arrived at the archipelago, the Captain made Martyn Garcia de Carquyzano Treasurer General and Diego de Solier "fator" and Francisco de Soto Senior Accountant, three others and myself "cuadrilleros" and "escuadras". Francisco attempted to betray Martin Ynygues and for this reason the position of Accountant General was given to Fernando de Bustamante and I was appointed Ships' Accountant. It seems to me that this occurred in November.
When the boat had been repaired, Martin Ynygues de Carcuyzano sent me, Alonso de Ryos and four others to the kings of the Moluccas and to the kings of Tidor and Gilolo to let them know that seven ships would be going to the Moluccas on orders of Your Majesty and that only we had arrived in the port of Çamafo and that the rest would follow; that we had learned that there were Portuguese there who were waring with the King of Tidor and had destroyed him for being a friend of Your Majesty, and for treating well Your Majesty's people who had gone to load cloves on the ships of Juan Sebastian y Ysponosa who had been sent there with ships, artillery and ammunition to protect them from the Portuguese.
And so we went secretly to the King of Giliolo, who received us well; and after we gave him the message, he sent his men to accompany us to see the King of Tidor who had fled to the mountains with most of his people And when they saw us they could not believe it, and they cried with pleasure and offered us their support even unto death, and begged us to never cease going there. Captain Martin Ynygues also sent a delegation to the King of Guirolo although the latter was on friendly terms with the Portuguese; and three men remained there with two large arquebuses in case the Portuguese went there. And thus [p.141] I returned to the ship with the delegation and the Captain received them well and gave them some gifts and we set out for the Moluccas. Having stopped at an island because of contrary winds, a Portuguese, Francisco de Castro, came to us with letters from the captain of their fort warning us not to anchor there nor do business in any of the islands of the Moluccas but to go to his fort where we would be treated courteously. Captain Ynygues and the officers refused this demand. It was repeated two or three times, insisting that we do not proceed to the Moluccas. When they realized that we were determined to go on, a large armada came near us and passed by Gilolo and asked the king to give them the three Spaniards who were there, promising to destroy him after capturing us if he did not surrender the said Spaniards. The king refused to surrender the men. So they went in search of us and waited in an island some 20 leagues from the Moluccas, then came out into the open sea. We passed near them but no shots were fired. Their armada was composed of two caravels, four fustas, 1 small vessel and other boats that carried artillery and about 80 "faraos" of the moros.
On January 1, 1527 we arrived in the island of Tidor and were met by the king, his brothers and followers. They swore to be our loyal friends and agreed to sell us what we needed. We promised to favor them and then we began the construction of three fortresses on land and they helped us, including the women. We brought our artillery and supplies and observed great vigilance by day and night.
After twelve days, the Portuguese came with a large force and bombarded us, killing one man and wounding many. We also wounded many of theirs; this went on until Saturday, when our ship was hit and was badly damaged; it was leaking and we were having great difficulty trying to keep it afloat because we could not find space in the port where we were, although there was dry land in another part of the island. But we dared not go there [p.142] for fear that the Portuguese would capture the ship and burned it.
And so, after three or four months, the ship sank. During this time the king of Gilolo asked the captain for twenty men and some heavy weapons for their defense against the Portuguese, which the captain gave. During this period the war was at its height and we often met the Portuguese at sea and we attacked each other fiercely, and we sometimes killed people and burned many towns. In the month of May, the Portuguese received aid in the form of two ships that carried about a hundred men, led by the captain of the fortress, Don Jorge de Meneses; and the argument as to whom the Moluccas belonged continued. We required them to leave the land, they did the same, and we never came to an agreement. After about a month or a month and a half, we put a ship in the shipyard for repairs to send it to Spain, and in Xirol we were thinking that when the Portuguese saw this they would kill us, which is what happened. They put poison in our drinking water but by some good fortune a cleric discovered this and without any harm being done the well was sealed.
Captin Martin Ynygues sent me to Gilolo to take charge of the men who were working there and to hasten the work. When I was in Gilolo some Portuguese came to the island of Tidor and poisoned Captain Martin Ynygues de Carquyzano with a cup of poisoned wine. After his death, Lieutenant Hernando de la Torre was made captain and the war began anew; and while Fernando de la Torre was captain, a man from a place called Maquyano, which has more clove than any other island, and for favoring this man many Spaniards died.
By December, we brought the completed fusta to the island of Tidor and the Captain appointed Alonso de Rios sea captain and myself to the position then held by Benabides, which was Treasurer of all the vessels. Before we could bring the fusta, the Portuguese made some {?foxedicos} (SIC) and one of them fashioned some grenades with gunpowder and other materials and placed it in the ship; the [p.143] grenades exploded at night but the noise woke us and we were able to put out the fire. Because of this, the ship could not be put to sea and all our labors were in vain.
Before the death of Martin Ynygyes, the "fator" Diego de Solier resigned voluntarily and Diego de Salinas was appointed.
In March of 1528, while the king of Girolo and twenty Spaniards were in a place that belonged to the enemy in Batachina Island, we saw a ship at sea and we sent two men on two paraos belonging to the king of Gilolo. The ship had been sent by Hernando Cortes from Nueva España on orders of the King, to inquire about our armada. The captain was Albaro de Sayabedra. Before they could enter the Port of Gilolo, which was two miles away, a Portuguese fusta came near, and discovering who they were, attempted to sink the ship. Sayabedra had been informed by the two men who were in the fusta regarding the situation between the Portuguese and us. He asked them where the Spaniards were and which was Terrenate Island and which was Tidor, for he had been told that there were Spaniards in Tidor. They told him that there were no Spaniards in the Moluccas although it was true that a big ship had gone there but it could not be kept afloat; they said that they had helped build a ship and provided everything needed for it, and that the Spaniards had gone through the Cape of Good Hope on their way to Castilla, and that they would be given everything they needed and that they should go to the fort. Sayabedra asked them why they kept saying this when he knew for certain that there were Spaniards, and after a long discussion and much against their will the two Spaniards told Sayabedra that he should not let them come near because they would be thrown to the sea and to ask his lombard soldier to fire on the Portuguese. He refused to do this, saying that they should initiate the attack, which in fact they did, firing on the "fusta" which by good fortune did not catch fire, and this initiated the war, but the vessel was able to enter the port of Gilolo undamaged.
The king of Gilolo sent a message to the Captain informing him that the ship was arriving and to have the fusta repaired. That same night a Portuguese batel [p.143]came with some native faraos and in the morning the ship began to bombard our men who were in the ship and on land and when the "fusta" arrived with some "faraos" of the king of Tidor, the war escalated again. And it happened that on Monday the 4th of May of that same year, a Portuguese "gallira" came to the far side of the island with 14 moros "faraos" and set fire to some places. Since they were challenging us, thirty seven of us went on board our "fusta" with Alonso de Ryos, as its captain, and went to the far end of the island through which they were coming; when we had left we had no idea that there were more than the "faraos" of the natives; later we discovered that the galera was there too; we decided that since we were so near them it would be against our honor to flee and the natives would lose respect for us. Thus we commended ourselves to God and the Señor Santiago our patron, and faced the enemy, and with the help of God we were able to take them, though at a great cost. They killed four of our men and we slew eight of theirs and wounded many and took many prisoners. The "galera" had three large pieces of artillery in the prow and 2 falcones; in the "corxia" another heavy weapon, and in the poop fourteen bronze "bersos" and 30 Portuguese, most of them riflemen.
The ship was ready and Sayabedra sailed for Nueva España, taking Macias del Poyo, who belongs to my company along as pilot. Some Portuguese who had joined us and some prisoners -the leader of these being a Galician- and many others came along to inform the King personally regarding what was taking place in these islands. The ship being anchored, because of contrary winds, in some islands populated by negros called Papuas, a Portuguese gentleman called Simon de Brito and another called Fernan Romero, "patron" of the galera we had captured and a slave jumped ship and sailed off in a canoe to return to the Moluccas and we saw them some fifty leagues from where we were, along the coast of Batachina. Another time we heard news that there were some Christians who had gotten lost, in a place called Guaya Melin, The captain ordered me to go with two men to inquire after these men so that if they were Portuguese we could capture and imprison them, and thus I went with eight moro "paraos", and before we had arrived, I [p.145] learned that they were the Portuguese men who had escaped in the canoe. I arrived at night and captured them inside a house and took them to Tidor where I met Sayabedra on my return; he had arrived despite contrary winds, and having no canoe to take the time needed to take on water and firewood and other things needed for the ship, he had returned more than 900 leagues, and the Portuguese did not go with the canoe for any other reason except that this vessel could not go to Nueva España.
The two men confessed that they had done this to serve their king, for which reason Simon de Brito was beheaded, quartered and his remains placed around the island where many Portuguese passed each day. He had joined us after being captured. Fernan Romero was hanged.
We later constructed a canoe and supplied it with all we would need for a trip to the Cabo de Nueva Esperanza, but Sayavedra wanted to return to Nueva España and so he went on his way.
During this period, we had many clashes with the Portuguese and we won an island that had cloves called Ma(blank)quyan. One day, when our chaplain -accompanied by another man who was with him - was on his way to hear confession, the two were caught prisoners by a Captain Jorge Sorce and were imprisoned for a long time until we exchanged them for four of our Portuguese prisoners. And because of his long imprisonment many of our men died without being able to confess.
It would be more or less the 20th of October of 1529, when about 30 of our men, and 12 others that went with those from Gilolo left, and 40 would remain in the fort. After we left the Portuguese were informed (according to a certain Fernando de Bustamante and a Portuguese) and they wrote the names of all those who had remained as well as of those who had left. Then they came with a great army to the city of the natives, entered our fort and killed and wounded Christians and took as prisoners the wounded men and killed many natives. The captain retreated to the fort with his men and when he ordered the men to open fire on the enemy, Bustamante told him that it was not the time to fight but to join the Portuguese. The captain and other [p.146] people refused and when he ordered his lombard soldiers to fire they refused, for many of them had already talked with Bustamante. The Portuguese sent a representative to ask the captain to surrender and the captain replied that they would all rather die fighting. They asked him a second time, and this time, seeing that there was nothing he could do because of the mutiny that Bustamante had instigated he was forced to surrender. Captain Hernando de la Torre was ordered to leave the island with all his followers and was given only a small vessel and some small arms. He was ordered to proceed to a place called Çamafo in Batachina (the place where we first went) and was told that no Spaniard of the company of Fernando de la Torre could ever enter the Moluccas islands again. Fernando de la Torre and 20 followers went to the island. Bustamante joined the Portuguese, taking with him all the books, accounts, documents pertaining to the dead and the living, refusing to give them to de la Torre. This took place on the feast of Sts. Simon and Judas 1592 and this was how the Portuguese stole the entire "fatoria" and all the lands of those who had gone to sea, and they took all our artillery and razed to the ground all our properties after taking the fort.
After six days I returned with the governor of the island and 6 other companions not knowing for certain how the fort had been captured; at midnight I went in a "parao" to find out who were inside the fort and discovered that it was the Portuguese. Then we went around the island to talk to the people and were told what was happening; I went to talk with the governor and asked him to give me a boat so that I could go to the king of Girol because he had a dozen Spaniards with him and had no wish to deal with the Portuguese. He sent an uncle of his to go with me. I took two "bersos" and a "saya de malla" (mail tunic??), ammunition and arms and we proceeded to Gilolo. I also took along a "fuxido" Portuguese. The king of Gilolo received us well. Three who traveled with me joined the Portuguese.
[page 147]
At the end of a few days another group of twelve of our men arrived, eight of them joined the Portuguese and Alonso de Ryos fled to a mountain in Batachina with three men, two "bersos" and other arms and after five or six days I went there in a light boat and took them to Gilolo; we were now nineteen men. After a few days Alonso de Ryos, two others and I went to bring our captain and his men to form a group in Gilolo and wait for an armada from Your Majesty. But the captain made a lot of excuses saying that he had sworn to keep the peace with the Portuguese and never go to the Moluccas again. Thus we returned to Gilolo and brought five more men because we were told that the Portuguese were preparing to attack Gilolo; which they did, although they did not attempt to land, they bombarded us and then turned back.
I think it was in December when the caravel of Sayavedra came to port at Camafo nine months after he had departed. When Fernando de la Torre saw that the ship was not going to Nueva España, he boarded it wth all his men and came to Xilolo and our number increased to ninety. Sayabedra and some others died on this voyage. Others from the caravel joined the Portuguese; war was renewed and lasted until May of 1530.
In the meantime, some of the men fled because of the hardships suffered from walking barefoot, not having any money to spend since the money the king gave us was very little and if we did not eat pork there was not much else. Many were dying of sickness and the group grew smaller each day.
The natives of all the islands of Mollucas and Banda agreed that it was the place to make peace {among themselves??} and then rise against the Portuguese as well as against us. And while they were discussing this I learned of it and thus when we went to make peace with the Portuguese and the natives of the islands, I spoke with the captain of the Portuguese and told him of the natives' treason and he thanked me. The natives had agreed with those of Gilolo island to kill us and poison us, promising later great rewards but we had been forewarned [p.148] by certain people from Gilolo who were our friends. For this reason we went armed day and night and were always on our guard.
We were about forty men then and were waiting for the armada of Your Majesty. The Portuguese captain had spies and was able to discover after a few months how the natives planned to kill us all. So he invited the king of the island, the governors and others to the fort and once they were there he seized them and the governor, who was the brother of the king and the most feared in all the islands, was beheaded. For this reason the people of the islands revolted against them and those of Gilolo, save a few who were still our friends. Last night I went secretly to the Portuguese fort in a canoe to find out what was going on and to convey our captain's offer of help, which they offered to us in return and in this manner we became good friends.
When I returned, things were going badly. The captain and his men were armed and had their artillery and barley loaded on great "tarzanas". In the morning I went to the house of the king where the governor was, and reasoned with him and the others present, explaining to them who was making trouble for them and for us and about the problems between the Portuguese and those of Ternate, and that the latter should solve their problem by themselves and that we should remain friends as always. And the captain and the governor swore friendship again.
[page 149]
In October of the same year a new Portuguese captain arrived, and as was our custom, I went to renew our peace. Before a year had gone by, the captain was assassinated by the natives of the island inside the fort and the whole island rose against the Portuguese. We were offered friendship and rewards if we would help them against the Portuguese. We made the best possible excuses in refusing; we were few and feared that we would be their next victims and being so few we would not be able to resist them. After a month the Portuguese sent a well-armed "galera" to us asking for supplies. We helped them to obtain these and we became even better friends than before.
For this reason the natives themselves put up the fence of the Portuguese fort and we helped to make them friends. Because of this state of friendship, I told the Portuguese captain, Bizente de Fonseca, that we wished to send an ambassador to the king of the Indies of Portugal and he agreed to my request. So we sent Pedro de Montemayor with an embassy to the Indies around January of the year thirty two to inform the governor that we had been many years in the Moluccas without receiving any help from Your Majesty and that we had heard from the Portuguese that Your Majesty had given the Moluccas to the King of Portugal for three hundred thousand ducats; that we were asking for a ship to return to Spain and were borrowing one thousand ducats for our expenses as we had no more money. When our ambassador left we were about 20 men; he returned around October of the year thirty three with a captain who was headed for the fort -called Tristan de Tayde- and told us that we could proceed to the Indies where we would be given the thousand ducats, but not before we passed on to them {not before we joined them}.
When the natives of Gilolo discovered that we were passing to the Portuguese, it displeased them and they attempted to detain us by making war on the Portuguese, and the latter, thinking that we had ordered it, made threats against us. Thus we were in danger from both. The natives wanted our help, so we told them that we were willing to help, but on the other hand, we sent word to the Portuguese, also giving them our assurances. The Portuguese arrived with a great armada and when their Captain in a rowboat [p.150] to see where they could disembark when a Castillian fired a shot over them. For this reason, Tristan de Tayde thought that we did not want war with them {?the natives} and reversed what he had proposed at first, that no Portuguese should harm any Spaniard. One morning he disembarked with some 200 Portuguese and captured the place and unfortunately the "fator" Diego de Salinas was shot, and thus we passed with them to their fort and around the month of January of 1534 they sent us to the Indies. We were then only 17 men for all the rest had died.
Your Majesty knows that in the year thirty one, I (blank) had in the fortress of the Portuguese a narration for Your Majesty, of all the things that had occurred in the past until that year; it was with Anibal Çernyche, captain of a Portuguese vessel, who had sworn on his life to bring it to Your Majesty; no one else knew of this save Fernando de la Torre and for this reason we hoped that we would be helped by some armada and would wait one more year in the Moluccas, but the Portuguese captain did not consent and Hernando de la Torre had to leave. For this reason I had to remain and was authorized by the captain to gather certain (erased) of clove and other items that the Moluccas owed Your Majesty. After Fernando de la Torre had gone, and I was taking the steps to gather the things, the Captain called me and told me that if I talked to the natives or asked them for anything I would be punished; he also sent word to the kings and the people of the island who owed clove to Your Majesty that none of them should pay me anything. I asked the captain to inform me regarding the artillery and other things that remained in the fort and he refused to give me any information. Before Fernando de la Torre left, he also ordered all the Castillians who had captured anything from the Poruguese to return these things but what they had taken from us they refused to return.
On January 15, 1535 I left the Moluccas on my voyage to the Indies accompanied by the pilot Macias de Poyo, who had remained with me for fear of going with Fernando de la Torre because, being pilot, he was in danger of being poisoned.
We arrived in the India de Portugal "el Cochin por Nabidad" where I met Fernando de la Torre and some six or seven others only, as some had died and others had elected to remain in the Indies with the Portuguese. He was supposed to leave for Spain in January, but when I arrived he still had no certification. When he was told he could leave, we agreed on the we would do so on the 13th but we were worried that once we were at sea we would be killed [p. 151] and therefore I should go in another ship and for this reason he wrote a short letter to Your Majesty, a letter of recommendation for me so that I myself might make my own report on all the things that had happened since I knew the facts well. Thus I boarded ship in Cochin on January 12, 1530 with six men and the Pilot Macias, and Fernando de la Torre remained behind to prepare his ship.
We went to Lisbona and then to San Juan for 2 days where the guards of the king of Portural took my report and the letter for Your Majesty; they also took the book of accounts and the charts of the strait to the Mollucas and those of Nueva España and other documents. Since they did not want to return my papers I went to Hebora (where the Court is) and there I learned that Your Majesty’s ambassador was there, and reported to him what had happened, and he told me to continue petitioning and that he would tell Your Majesty about it.
Leaving a daughter I had brought from Molucca and some other things in Lisbona, I left Camino Real since I learned that the King of the Portuguese had sent for me; and not finding me they took the pilot Macias to court, but he fled without appearing before the king.
Before arriving in the Moluccas I was appointed accountant of the ship and then in the Mollucas Sea Treasurer, a position previously held by a certain Benebydes. I beg Your Majesty to pay my fare as I have no funds left and beg to be paid my salary also.

AGI. Paronato 37, R. 36.
Transcribed by Iosu Etxezarraga Ortuondo

[page 153]

Report for Viceroy Velasco

(Torn)Report ordered by the lawyer
that it is not con-
(Torn) Madrid April 1573 that Illustrious Sir venient to sail to the
Moluccas Islands
through the Magallanes Strait
(torn) has been given to Don
Antonio de Mendoca but through Nueva

(Torn) concerning what (torn) señor asks me to give my opinion that if sailing (torn)
from the ports of the western oceans of Nueva España (torn) with the armadas for the purpose of trading and communicating with Spice Islands (torn) of the Moluccas and where there is so much (illegible) (torn) to bring to them our Holy Catholic Faith. Granting that other (torn) will understand this better than me, for having had more than 34 years more than (torn) of Magallanes, to go to the Moluccas for more than 26 years (torn) , I left the islands where I lived for eight years in the service of the Crown of Castile. Aware of the duty I owe your illustrious person as chaplain, by telling what I know and understand.
[page 154]
To sail through the Magallanes Strait from Spain to the Spice Islands of the Moluccas in the west, which is in the demarcation of the King, and to return to Spain from there through the same strait with the spices, drugs and other merchandise, I am sure that it is every important and useful and less expensive than sailing from Nueva España, if there were no difficulties to be considered in a (torn) voyage that is long and dangerous when traveling from Spain and from there, return to Spain through the same route. For it is certain that arms sent from Spain will entail less expense than from these ports and with less expense the spices and other merchandise for Spain can go through the same route rather than by bringing them to Nueva España since they will have to go from one ocean to another, passing through land, and the cost of transporting supplies from Spain and merchandise from the west will be great.
But since the route from Spain to the Strait of Magallanes is very long, there being a distance of almost 2,000 leagues, and the strait is in a latitude of 52º and lies farther from the eqiunox line by half a day and the strait has to pass from one ocean to another for nearly 90 leagues and the land is inhabited, with a short summer and long winters, has strong tempests and winds, and in some parts does not even measure a league in width and (torn) currents of the tide since it flows with them. It is a water (torn) 30 leagues. Within the strait, from one part to another (torn) and danger of passing with a navy, specially large ships (torn) for the expedition, specially (torn) small "bastos", carrying merchandise for a long period it is not (torn) this cargo of spices. Aside from this, navigation from the strait (torn) is very long for it contains two thousand six hundred leagues per one (torn) it is still my opinion not to be deceived by the idea.
Not only is navigation from Spain to the strait long, but will take a longer time than is convenient because of the calm that is found beneath the equinox and other contrary weather, for which reason the armadas have always arrived at the strait with time to spend the summer. And if the ships arrive in the summer, there will be the need to repair some of them, supply themselves with water and firewood, winter will come and all (torn) for reverses that may cause great harm to the armadas and even having reached their destination, will not obtain the end desired.
[page 155]
Magallanes was the first to discover the strait, having waited for the summer to pass before going through it and had remain there during the winter, and this also happened to other armadas that have gone there, and since they had to cross a great gulf that is as wide as the distance from the strait up to the Spice Islands, they should not pass the strait without preparing {?"adrecar"} the ships and getting the necessary supplies for the voyage. Time and effort is spent in this exercise, as soldiers and sea men know. There is much food, but no bread. And being on land, the men apply themselves to work, make discoveries or mutiny; this situation befell Magallanes whose officers mutinied and several had to be beheaded and others exiled. And because of this, he lost the ship and its entire crew, and of five ships only three remained. He reached the strait with much effort and came near the Moluccas where he was killed by the natives. There was betrayal on the part of 30 Spaniards and of the three ships only one sailed for Spain with its load of spices and led by captain Juan Sebastian de Cano, a native of Guipyzcoa; the other ship was captured by the Portuguese.
The Commander Loaysa was the second to sail from Spain to the Spice Islands, with seven ships passing through the Strait of Magellan, and arrived late with an armada that had gone off course. And when we arrived at the mouth of the strait, we lost the largest and best ship next to the flagship where Juan Sebastian de Cano and I were. Some of our people drowned. After this story, there were other incidents and at one tine we were in danger of losing all the ships and had so many problems that we had to leave the strait and go to the Santa Cruz river which is 40 leagues from the Rio de Plata. As we left the strait, two ships were separated from us; one returned to Spain, the other was never seen again. We were now only four ships, in danger of mutiny and again buffeted by another storm which caused all four ships to be separated from one another; we never saw each other again and none returned to Spain.
[page 156]
The third armada sent from Spain was composed of three ships and was led by Simon de Alçaçaua. It arrived late at the strait and because they could not cross it he was killed by his captains. All the ships were lost save one that went to the island Española.
Another armada was sent on orders of the bishop of Plasencia On arriving at the strait, the lead ship was lost, another returned to Spain, and only one passed through the strait and went to what seems to be Peru and obtained nothing of sellable value there. This sir, is the story of the four armadas that have gone to the Magallanes strait.
One of the reasons why it is difficult to navigate through the strait is that only two ships can sail to the mouth and there are 30 leagues to be traveled up to the exit and only with good winds. But the help of the tide is also essential because the current is contrary and sailing is difficult even with good winds and as storms are frequent and the land is very elevated, there are no ports to offer shelter. Better than to sail at great risk of great danger and effort and of losing the vessels is the alternative of leading the ships to a part where, seeing the storm coming, they may exit to the open sea. And sometimes, when some ships are left behind in the strait and others go forward, they never see each other again. There is always the danger of mutiny specially when a ship is lost and its crew is added to another ship, causing a shortage of supplies, many are discouraged about going through such a great gulf to reach the Spice Islands.
And even after crossing the strait there are often great tempests of wind and sea which separate the ships, as what occurred to us and we never saw each other again. Especially since they have the (erased) guard (erased) of Peru and Nueva España, the ship arrives without any merchandise.
There is a disease in this western sea that causes men's gums to swell and putrefy, and many die; in our ship 40 men have died from the strait up to the islands; this disease has attacked even those who traveled from Nueva España to the Spice Islands, but since the voyage was shorter than the voyage from Spain through the strait, and their supplies fresh, there was less harm caused during this voyage.
[p.157] When the ships arrive, if the ship arrives alone, there aren’t any men who can converse, and since in that land, many of the people are traitorous, turbulent and vicious, in every port they attempt to (erased) to cheat them, capture them and take what they carry.
I do not speak here of what has happened or could happen in the places where the Portuguese are, as I am sure that when Your Majesty sends an armada to the Spice Islands, Your Majesty and the King of Portugal have settled what belongs to each.
And since I do not have total information regarding the voyage from the Spice Islands to the strait, from what I hear about the voyages from the coast of Peru to Chile, they are difficult; and that ships that go from Nueva España to Peru do not dare cross from here to Chile nor to
(erased) because the pilots know well that if they stray from the coast of Peru (erased) they are left (erased) without going to land, which is to say that it is more difficult to navigate from the Spice Islands because of the currents and the tide from the strait toward the equinox because of the winds in that part of the south.
Granting that the ships that travel from the Spice Islands arrive at the strait, if there is need for repairs, the cargo would have to be unloaded, they would have to take care that the merchandise is not harmed, particularly the spices. If many men arrive sick, there will have to be a decent place to put them. What I mean to say is, even if the voyage through the strait was not so dangerous, the place is not inhabited and they would still have to bring a cargo of great value. It is my opinion that a voyage by an armada should not be attempted through the strait of Magallanes to the Spice Islands, when it can be done safely from Nueva España (At the margin: it is not convenient to sail through the strait to the Spice Islands).


Granting that the armadas should be prepared in the ports of the west of Nueva España, it would be done at a greater cost because the men receive large salaries and the ships have to be supplied from Spain, with the many things [p.158] necessary for an armada (Illegible: of money). And these things have to travel from river to land in carts. It will be more useful and productive for the royal agencies if the armadas are prepared in Nueva España than in any other place.
The wood for building ships of great size is plentiful and good in the coast of Nueva España as also in Guatemala and Leon, cables and other fittings are done very well here, excellent silk can be found near the western ports, artillery that is brought will not be made (erased) as much as they wish since copper is abundant near the ports and the anchors can be made in Vera Cruz. Iron for nails will have to come from Spain; and canvas for sails although both these items can be found here. It is not too inconvenient to send wine and oil from Spain, although these will cost more, as well as other necessities. Biscuits can be supplied here as well as legumes; beef and other items abound in this land. The ports have much fish.
In the islands of the west and in those of the Spice Islands vessels{?porte} can be built there for there is good wood and there are good carpenters, and great quantities of iron.
And being aware that a great quantity of spices or drugs and merchandise that come from the west that can be passed from one ocean to another will cost much, the reply to this is that they cannot be passed from another part of this land, they can pass from ocean to ocean, unloading in the port or bay [p.159] of Quantepeque, to be transported from there to the pier of the Guaçacuolco river in drays and from there to be transported to the port of San Juan Ulna where they will be loaded on ships that will sail for Spain; since from Tegualtepeque to the Guocaçoalco river there are no more than (blank) leagues and from there to the mouth of the river (blank) leagues and from there to the port of (blank) leagues and the supplies for their needs for stops or repairs are easily available in those parts.
And I say that even if the expense to transport these items from ocean to ocean is great, the profit is so huge that with little capital they can replace everything that Spanish merchants bring from Mexico to places even farther than Vera Cruz. More so, if they bring spices, drugs, gold and other riches.
Granting the huge expenditure, these costs assure the return of not only the principal but what is gained through it and redounds to the benefit of Your Majesty's vassals, and enriches, ennobles and assures the spread of our Holy Catholic Faith bringing it to those infidels who are immersed in the perverse Mohammedan faith, and assures us that Our Lord will be served and the Royal Crown of Castile will be honored as well as the rest of Old Spain.
The greatest inconvenience for us is not having been able to shorten the return voyage from the Spice Islands to Nueva España. Perhaps the reason is that the small and old ships did not attempt to cross such a wide ocean to avoid passing the strait or to turn around land; there is no reason to think that a trip can be made by sea to the Spice Islands and not return the same way.
Because the ships were not in perfect condition, and there was lack of information regarding the weather, because the ocean had not been traversed during all the months of the year and for several years, we have reason to say that it was always the bad weather [p.160] that prevented such a return. I believe that even if the weather had delayed the return voyage from the Spice territories, if the vessels were in such bad condition, the captains would not have arrived so promptly nor hurried back because they had very few supplies and feared dying in the ocean and elected to travel a safer route.
The voyage from here to the Spice Islands is so easy that even small oared vessels can make the trip in two months, which is very helpful for those who are there.
The spices in the Moluccas are cloves and in Banda it is "nuez moscada'. It is a great truth that when we were in the Moluccas we could gather from 8,000 to 10,000 quintales {a unit of measure} of clove and sometimes 12,000 to 13,000. In the Banda about a thousand quintales of "nuez moscada" is gathered and all of it goes with (blank) of the Portuguese and they used to bring it to Malaca and from there to India, and from India they bring to Portugal no more than 8 to 10,000 quintales of clove and less of "nuez moscada" and the rest was sent to Armuz in the Persian Gulf where it is sold to the Turks, Moors, Jews and Armenians and others. From there they go to other ports, and despite the great cost everyone buys as much as he can. Since these people go to Armuz to buy these spices, so could they go to Spain; Your Majesty could give a license to Spaniards or other nationals to bring these to Alexandria and other parts and sell them there, and since in other times they were bought in India to take them to the west, buy them in the west and send them to Asia and the whole Levantine and even to India. This way all the cloves, nuez and mace brought to Spain are sold since the Portuguese can only bring these to the islands of the Moluccas and Banda. P.161] There is also cinnamon in the Celebes islands and ginger, and there is information that there is pepper in some of the islands; to carry out expeditions would bring an abundance of these items aside from the spices and drugs and other things of great value such as gold. The profits would be great since all these items brought to Spain would have an outlet. I do not mention that the expeditions (blank) in the same (blank) with the Chinese and other countries and the large profit that will be available to all contr(blank) would ennoble the lands of Your Majesty and increase Your Majesty's treasury and this, Illustrious Lord is what I believe about this business.

AGI. Patronato 46, R.10.
Transcribed by Ondare Kultur Kudaekita

[Page 163]

Report regarding equipment and provisions needed for the voyage

Illustrious Sir:

The order that I think should be followed in the discovery of the islands of the west of Nueva España is the following:
First, new cargo ships should be purchased, one of them 1,500 tons and another 120. These ships should be bought in Nicaragua or Panama, and after they have been well caulked and it should be fitted with a brace lined with lead that would extend from the keel upward and up to the water line. Only the joints where the nails reach them shall be lined with lead. The ships should be well "enxarçiados" and have "xaretas" from the main mast to the stairs [?triquete}. Each ship should carry two lighters attached (at the left margin: it is necessary to carry royal provision for those officers.)
These ships are to carry double anchors and cables, and other provisions (erased), two sails and canvas to make them and other necessities in triplicate; and there not being good nets/ropes in Spain or Nicaragua or Panama, it should be made from pita in Guatemala.
These vessels should carry bronze artillery because the humidity in those parts is bad for iron. And if possible, to have a dozen bronze "falcones" with their chambers such as the Portuguese use, one for each peon. Two dozen double bronze cradles {?versos} should be carried with triple cabins. Each ship should carry a spare sail. {?leme de respeto.}
[page 164]
From the kingdom of Castile, four foreign lombard soldiers should be sent with all their accoutrements for their trade.
And before anything else: pilots and crew that are able. And if possible to give rewards in Castile and in the Islands. It should be understood that they cannot be Galicians or Portuguese.
There should be officers, carpenters and caulkers who, besides their usual work, can serve as sailors.
A blacksmith should come along with his tools to do the necessary work in the ship.
It would be convenient to bring a surgeon, a barber with his medicines that are required in such journeys.
A priest should go with every ship.
The vessels should go to the coast of Nueva España in the port of Acapulco, because aside from being a good port it is the closest to the city of Mexico, which is 75 leagues away and has good Indian towns. And its location has everything needed for the launching of the armada, and this port and land is very healthful.
It is also convenient so that when these ships arrive at this port that is in Acamulata, the nearest town, all the necessary supplies be taken to prevent any delays.
The ovens to make the biscuits should be made in that port for they cost less there.
The corn to be carried on these ships should come from temperate or cold zones as corn that comes from the coast is from hot soil and spoils quickly.
The {?cezinas} should be done in the same port of Acapulco.
Fish should be caught with fishing nets in the port of Çigatanejo or in Asuthelan, twenty leagues from Acapulco, since these ports and coasts have much salt for this purpose. And everything being ready, the men who will be sailing with the fleet should be sent to confess and receive communion and prepare their testaments. The names and personal data of each man should be left on land and sent to the Casa de Contratación in Sevilla for its information.
[page 165]
Everything being accomplished, they should depart in November or December, because it is convenient to leave at this time for there are winds from the northeast east and southeast. Leaving the coast they should cross the Islas de los Ladrones which have greater altitude than the Islas de los Reyes or those of the Corales because these are very low and they cannot be seen until one runs into then as two ships of the three ships that were sent by the Marquis de Valle did; those two were never seen again and only one reached the Moluccas. That is why I believe that it is better to journey through higher areas as the Islas de los Ladrones, and from there proceed to the Island of the Matalotes which has an altitude of 10º where we could find out from the natives if there are some Christians there from the ships of the Marquis de Valle, and in truth some natives came out making the sign of the cross and spoke to us in a friendly manner begging us to visit their islands where it is to be believed they learned our tongue from those Spaniards who arrived there, and these natives were very important in those parts because they had learned our language. And that part of those islands should never be gone into by any Christian.
Then the chart should be followed toward the Philippine Islands which has an altitude of 13-1/3º. And if before reaching there, they should come to the island of Maçagua, which is an island of five leagues (erased) where they should ask for the lord of the place who during the times of Magallanes was baptized and called don Carlos who is a friend of the vassals of His Majesty. And if he is dead, to ask for Catanao, his son and heir from whom they could inquire regarding the Christians who were captured in the island of Mindanao, so that they might be recovered. And also to inform them that we are going with the vessels to the said Philippines, to the bay of Cobos, to buy from them what we need. And to ask if they can give us two of their boats to accompany us until we reach the bay of Cobos. It will also be a help to us to have them with us, for if the natives of that area see the men of Maçgoa with us they will be assured and will not seek trouble.
Once arrived in the Philippines, in the bay of Cobos, good ports will be found where they can be safe. All of this land is well populated with good people. And the produce of the land is abundant.
[page 166]
Once the ships are anchored it would be good to go the island of Aguyo y Tandaya, who are the friends we have there, and from whom we receive good works, and they should be shown much courtesy and be given gifts to retain their good will. And all the other natives will be assured seeing that these are friendly with us. And if the head called Tandaya were dead, because he was very old then, inquire for the leader called Duomona.
And with the aid of our friends we should call all the leaders of that area and make them understand that we want to be their friends and we came to buy from them and not make war on them and that from there we will be going to the island of Amaluco to help our friends there. It is important to give them small gifts. And if they inquire after captain Calauaça say that we have never known him because they were scandalized by him. And since these people are suspicious and sensitive special care should be taken to prevent offending then in any manner as this will cause trouble.
Since the people of this land are greedy and envious of each other, if some are given gifts and we buy what we need from them and not from others, they will come to our ships and start accusing those and asking us to go to their ports and towns. Therefore it is best to give them all some insignificant gift. It would be convenient at this time to obtain supplies of rice and other necessities, because since they are fickle and may change their minds and refuse to sell anything to us and so it is advisable to take advantage of this time.
It is also good to keep good guards in the boats because many times, when their demands are not met, they attempt to steal from us. Seeing that they remain gentle and without them we cannot make good use of that land, they should be tied to the (erased) on board the ships with their chains and the chain should be inserted in a scupper-hole of the ship.
It would be good also to tie the boats to the cords of the ship at night and have good men with arquebuses because ordinarily they try to cut the ropes so the ship will keel over.

[page 167]
It is important to obtain two light boats for the use of the ship since the batels must always remain at the side of the ship.
A warning to the men; the natives should not be allowed on the ship save in small numbers for these are traitorous people. And when they board the vessels, their crises (kris) should be removed. When they want to commit some act of betrayal they come somewhat drunk and sometimes even bring beautiful women who offer palm wine and when the Spaniards are drunk they kill them.
Care should also be taken when they make peace by getting blood from their wrists or breasts and drink this with palm wine together with the captains, because when the Spaniards are least cautious because of the peace compact, they kill them and steal from them.
It is also advisable that upon arrival at any of the ports where it seems suitable to deal with its leaders to do so from two big "calaluzes" which are light boats common to the area equipped with people, who should be well paid because they are volunteers, ready to be sent to the islands of the Moluccas. And in each one there should be a Spaniard, and they should travel along the coast of Mindanao until they come to the island of Garrangan, without saying that there are any Spaniards on the calaluzes. They should see whether we should go back and occupy the principal village where we had been. From there, they should go to the islands of Sanguin and Talao and Nuza to inquire if there are captive Spaniards so that they can be ransomed. Then they should cross to the island of Gilolo and directly from there to the port where the king resides with the habits/excuses of those famous in those islands who sell most secretly what they can, without anyone knowing that they bring Spaniards or that they remain in the Philippines. And when they arrive at the island of Gilolo, which is eight leagues from the islands of the Moluccas, they shall give the letters to the king whose name is Catarabume or to his son Aquichil Cotorati, his brother Aquichil Quidori, or his brother Aquichil Diaz. Give them gifts in behalf of the King and his letters and those of the viceroy of Nueva España and those of the captains of the [p.168] ships. Inform them of their arrival in the Philippines. And ask him to persevere in the service of His Majesty since that was his father's command and he had complied with it all the times that the Spaniards had come to their land. And because of what has happened here, we have not been able to help him with his problems with the Portuguese and were not able to return to him the lands that the latter had usurped. And that they only want to know if he is alive and how his vassals and friends are so as to be able to provide some help later. And that a great armada was being prepared in Nueva España to quickly proceed to those parts.
And in the letters they will bring from the captain of the ships they will ask to be sent clove "de cabeça" and "nuez moscada" and mace by(erased: that) the payment they brought for it. They will also ask for seedlings of clove, "nuez moscada", long pepper and tamarind trees as well to be planted in Nueva España, all of which they will do.
Some leaders from Gilolo and Tidori should be invited also to speak with the captain in order to find out what is taking place there and if there are any from that land who wish to come here, and they will do so willingly having desired this for many years.
They could also ask for a couple of "coracoras" which are the boats used in the Moluccas, to go to the island of Bandan to collect cargo of "nuez moscada" and mace to bring to the Philippines. And when the natives of the Philippines see that those from the region of the Moluccas come to see us and bring us presents, they will become loyal to us and will serve us.
These spices will be used to barter in the islands of Japan in exchange for silk thread and silk cloth, velvet, damask, taffeta, ivory, ambergris, camphor, porcelain and many other items. And whatever remains of the spices will be brought to Nueva España and will show all that is available there.
[p.169] It would be good to seek, with the aid of our friends in those places, a peace treaty with the head of Butuan which is the principal port in the island of Mindanao and where the Chinese and Bornean vessels come to buy gold, which exists her in greater quantity than anywhere else. It will also be an opportunity to make inquiries regarding the Castillians who were captured in Mindanao so that they may be ransomed and much can be learned from them that will be useful in the future.
And then the ship should be put in order, caulk it, repair it, and do whatever needs to be done, and there should always be someone on the lookout for the natives so they do not take anything, as they are wont to do. The artillery should not be removed from land through any other way than by (erased) and the less necessary items placed in a "verraça" on land with guards day and night. And as soon as one vessel is finished, the next one should be put in order.
At the end of April they should be ready, following the chart of the islands of the "lequios" or that of Japan, which is the best course to follow to return to Nueva España because aside from being a direct path, we will pass through places suited to our purpose to purchase the above mentioned merchandise. It is also at this time that the Portuguese and other merchants go in their junks from the port of Sunda in the Island of Java, loaded with pepper for China and Japan as well as those who leave Malaca, Patni and Sian. It is also at this time that those from the land of the leqios and Japan go to the land of Miaco, for this is the time of the winds from the south southeast and west. This is also the case throughout the Indies. And so we must travel during the month of May toward the island of the "lequios" and Japan and from there continue until we reach an island near the Miaco, and from there, with a wind that might favor us until we reach 40 or 45º, we will cross the coast of Nueva España. During this crossing I am certain that we will find many islands populated by natives, [p.170] from where vessels come to trade carrying no other merchandise save silver bars.
To be in the good graces of the dukes and lords of Japan and Miacos, they should be given presents in the name of the king. Some presents that could be given them would be "sillas ginetas" (saddles??), swords and other splendid things. And to help us in future transactions there is a priest called Cosme de Torres, a native of Valencia, who is here converting the Japanese to Christianity. There are also Spaniards there, among them pilots and sailors who came with us, and they can help to inform us regarding that land.
As I have previously said, being positioned along the coast of the Miaco at 40/30 or 45º and reaching as close as possible to the north, the voyage is assured. Even if we are at such a high altitude, we can descend up to 10º where the port of la Navidad is located. And the hopes of His Majesty shall be fulfilled, after so many deaths and millions of ducats have been spent. Our Lord and our Holy Faith shall be served and the patrimony of His Majesty will increase as well as that of Nicaragua, Peru, Panama and Chile and all the other provinces of the Indies. And with this path that shall be opened with the help of Our Lord, [p.171] all will become quiet and peaceful. And aside from this, it will become a very important trade when the people from those parts come in their junks to do business in the Indies when His Majesty grants them the license to do so.
It would be convenient, then, to remain in the islands of Japan for only a brief time, for they must depart from there not later than the beginning (erased) of July in order to reach Nueva España that same month or the beginning of August, and with the help of Our Lord they will not take long to arrive at the port of Navidad in Acapulco.
If it is Your Lordship's view that such a trip should not be undertaken, then they should cross from the coast, then from the coast of Nueva España toward the islands of the west, but they should continue along the length of the coast of Nueva España up to the 44º that was discovered by Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo in the year forty two. And they should proceed as closely as possible until they see the direction indicated by this coast, because it could mean turning in an arc to Miaco. And sailing along this coast could give us an idea of the more convenient ports for this voyage and expedition. From there they can cross to the land of Miaco or some island in Japan and travel along their coasts until they reach the Philippines. And after the ships have been fitted, they can run along the coasts of said islands until they reach Miaco, and from then proceed to Nueva España.

Memorandum of the ship’s stores that I think should be brought on these ships

250 quintales [1 quintal: a hundredweight]) of biscuits

500 fanegas [about 1.5 bushels] of corn

12 fanegas of beans

6 fanegas of chick peas

40 arrobas [an arroba is equivalent to about 2.5 lbs.] of oil

40 of vinegar

4 casks of wine in glass containers[?]

50 slabs of bacon

500 pieces of cheese

50 pitchers of honey

6 fanegas of lentils

50 arrobas of dried fish

6 casks of salt

[p. 172]
A list of items that can be brought from Nueva España since there is no money here
to make purchases:

A "grana" (fine scarlet cloth) from Valencia

Two scarlet tapestries

Two yellow tapestries/lengths of cloth

Two green tapestries/length s of cloth

Two blue tapestries/lengths of cloth

Six pieces of velvet

One black, one white, and six in assorted colors

Twelve pieces of "tafetanes entredobles" (taffeta) in assorted colors

Twelve inexpensive moorish gauze veils

A chest from Ruan

Seven pieces of fine Dutch linen

Two hundred brass chamber-pots

Two hundred axes

Two hundred machetes

Twenty metal bells for China. They should be cast in Nueva España, and are used by the natives for their wars and celebrations

50 dozen knives from Flanders with brass handles

20 dozen assorted figurines

Mirrors of all kinds

One hundred dozen cascabels [for cannons]

One hundred small bells

Four arrobas [about 11.5 kgs.] of glass pearls[?cuentas margaritas]

Two arrobas of glass beads

Five hundred bundles of green and yellow bugle beads

Four arrobas of beads of all kinds

Twenty brass plates

A few light and inexpensive gold items

Some lightweight items of silver

[p.173] A few trifles from Flanders

Four dozen simple hats "de grana"

A thousand ducats in "reales"

Liquidanbar in bars

Liquid liquidanbar


Copal, which is "saumedio" of Nueva España

Incense from Nueva España

"Grana de cochinila" fron Nueva España

Ten quintales of copper in "plenchuelas"

Fifty round shields from Nueva España

What should be brought from Castile are the following:

50 arquebuses of flint and wick

50 arquebuses of wick that should not be from Vizcaya

20 "vallestas" with their attachments

50 pieces of armor for the head "de caveca"

12 coats of mail

12 "coraçinas"

Fine gunpowder for the arquebuses


The items to be bought in Lisbona are the following:

Two slaves from those parts, one should be from China or Japan
and the other from the Celebes. That both speak the Malayan tongue

12 black and red "patolas" (pieces of painted silk cloth from India)

8 "chelas"

50 "muries"

20 "chaudies"
20 malay tapestries/lengths of cloth

20 rolled tapestries/lengths of cloth

20 tapestries/lengths of cloth

[p.173] As I have previously mentioned to Your Lordship it seems that once the vessels have left the coast of Nueva España and they go along the length of the coast, they will have to cross to the islands of Japan, I understand that there are many islands in that anchipelago. And finding a port in any of them, where they can do what is necessary, they should not go forward but rather turn around since what is being attempted here is to discover this return route as it is obvious it can be done. And from the figures and information we have received regarding this, the longitude between the port of la Navidad and the Philippines is about 1,300 leagues. And from the islands of Japan and this coast of Nueva España there should be about 500 leagues which represent a voyage of 15 to 20 days.
The clove that is taken in the five islands of the Moluccas should come to about 500 vaares, most of this coming from the islands of Tidori, Terrenate and Machian, because in the islands of Motil and Baan there is little clove and is of inferior quality.
Up to 400 "baares" of clove can be received from the island of Amban, each "vaar" being the equivalent of six of our "quintales" (1 quintal being equivalent to about a hundredweight). Those clove trees do not produce the same quantity each year. The clove is harvested from September to Christmastime, which are traded for patolas (erased) which are pieces of painted silk cloth that are brought to the Indies, about 7 or 8 varas (a measure of length) long and which cost about 4 or 5 ducats each. The clove is also traded for bells which are used in those parts for their celebrations and wars. This clove is also traded with porcelain from China and clothes and cotton from Vengala or exchanged for a certain kind of coin that in those parts is worth four ducats, and made in China and in the island of Porneo.
p. 175]
The king of Portugal takes a third of this clove, the other two thirds are taken to Malaca and from there to India and sold for 56 "baares" if taken by the King there. In Malaca it is sold at 30 ducats
The Chinese eat so much clove that they spend more for it in one year than they did in twenty. And the same goes for Turkey, Persia and Cambodia and India. Since the demand is much greater than before, more trees are being planted. Ships did not go to the Moluccas more often than every three every three years and were not fully loaded and would take the cargo to the island of Bondan to load "nuez moscada" and mace. But now four large ships go each year to collect the clove.
The "nuez moscada" from the islands of the Molucca are better than those from the islands of Bandan. There is also great abundance of long pepper and giinger in the Mollucas.
Around 30,000 "vaares" of "nuez moscada" and mace are gathered in Bandan each year. The "vaar" of Bandan has greater weight that that of the Moluccas.
Pepper is obtained in the island of Java and is usually loaded in the port of Sunda. It is also obtained in Patami and is traded for clothing from Vengala and the Indies. It is a better kind of pepper than that found in the island of Çamatia or in the Moluccas and is worth from 10 to 12 ducats per "vaar".
Cinnamon is found in the islands of Mindanao and Timor beyond the island of Maçgoa, close to where Magellan was killed.
Sandalwood comes from the island of Timor and has little value. It is also found in the island of Macaçar, although of inferior quality. There is also "aguila" in these islands, which is fragrant when burned, and the natives of India use this wood to burn their dead. It is also available along the coast of the Moluccas and is better than that of Macaçar.
[p. 176]
All these spice, sandalwood, "aguila" camphor and "majuy" trees are planted in the mountains. None of these lose their leaves during the entire year. Pepper is also planted in the mountains and is a vine that climbs up the trees exactly like the ivy of Spain.

AGI. Paronato 18, R. 15
Transcribed by Ondare Kultur Kudeaketa


About the voyage that has to be undertaken

Report on the things I believe should be brought to the attention of our King and Lord so that he can undertake what will serve him best, which are the following:

For the reason that the port of La Navidad, which is in the Mar del Poniente of this Nueva España and is at nineteen degree and a half more or less in elevation, and is an unhealthy land, so that the officials and people who reside in that port are frequently sick and some die. There are very few natives in the area surrounding the port and because it is one hundred fifteen leagues from this city and one hundred eighty leagues or more from the port of Vera Cruz, it appears that it would be advisable that the shipyard that is situated in that port, and where the ships are built for the voyages of discovery of the Mar del Poniente, be transferred to another more convenient and wholesome port: firstly because the officials who supervise the work on the ships, even if they are offered good salaries, refuse to go there because they fear for their health and also because the things they need for their sustenance, such as wine and oil and other items from Spain, are very expensive, and is the reason why there are few officials involved in the building of said vessels and the work has been gone on for more than two years and will take another year more or less to complete and be ready for the voyage. There are only two galleons, one with a capacity/tonnage of up to two hundred fifty tons and the other with a capacity of up to forty tons. Thus it is very important that the port where the people will embark should be a healthy place and not conducive to illness, because if the people embark from an unhealthy place, many of them will fall ill before getting on board and many will die later while out at this will cause many problems.
[ON THE MARGIN: [Port] of Acapulco]
[ON THE MARGIN IN THE COPY 2: That if the project/should advance/he should see this report/and discuss/and what should be done and advise./]
The port of Acapulco appears to have good area where a shipyard can be set up where ships can be built and where they can be loaded and unloaded, being one of the good ports there are for the discovery of the Indies, large, secure and healthful, with good sources of water, much fish and lumber for the joining/linking of ships and within five or six leagues or a little more, much wood for deck planks and pine for masts and lateen yards, and even if the planks had to be brought there from other parts, what is most important is that the port where ships can be built and for the loading and unloading should be Acapulco because aside from being good and close to populated areas and this city, it is no more than seventy or so leagues from the road , and from Vera Cruz to said port, it is more or less a hundred ten leagues. On this same road loaded wagons pass from Los Angeles without coming to this city so that from Bera Cruz to the port of Acapulco the distance is shorter than that to la Navidad which is seventy leagues more or less which is more than a third of the road. In the same way, from this city of Meco to the port of Acapulco, the road is much shorter than from la Navidad more or less by half, which is important for the transport of many things that have to be transported by land to the port of Acapulco as well as from Veracruz and this city.
In addition, for what has to be transported from one ocean to another by the river of Guaçaquoalco through Tegoantepeque, it is important that the shipyard and loading and unloading be done in the port of Acapulco because this will cut costs and reduce time because Acapulco is closer to Tegoantepeque than la Navidad, since from la Navidad to Tegoantepeque it is two hundred thirty leagues and from Acapulco a little more than a hundred ten leagues.
It is also important that the port of Acapulco be populated and that loading and unloading be done there because the merchandise and munitions can be brought in arrias[?] from one sea to another in a short time and with facing the dangers that exist if done through the river of Guaçaquoalco and crossing Tegoantepeque and I believe with no additional costs because from Veracruz to Goaçaquoalco takes sixty leagues of navigation and everything that should be brought up to said river should go on boats and should be unloaded there to be transported on canoes or on boats {echizas?}up the river.
Up to the wharf that is about twenty leagues from the shore of Tegoantepeque where embarkation and loading of all the things to be brought to [p.179] the port of Acapulco, a shore that is very dangerous for the loading and unloading of the ships, navigating from Beracruz to Guaçaqualco is also dangerous because of the northerly cross winds and if they navigate toward the north in that area, they have to go across with the boats, and everything has to be brought in arrias{?} and wagons through the twenty leagues from the wharf on the Goaçaqualco river up to the shore of Tegoantepeque. And so to avoid this situation that would arise if the merchandise and things that could be brought in arrias overland from Veracruz to Acapulco and from Acapulco to Vercruz would be transported through the river of Goaçacualco and Tegoantepeque and to avoid the dangers it is more advisable that transport of everything from one ocean to another should be done overland on arrias besides those that can be brought on wagons or carts ; only artillery and anchors should be transported through Guacaqualco and Tegoantepeque because they are very heavy.
The problem of items that are heavier than artillery and anchors and cannot be brought on arrias can be solved by sending copper and tin and other materials necessary to fabricate artillery from Spain, and by having good officers to make them. The same thing can be done about the anchors. There is copper in this land that is used to make artillery although it is not so good because it explodes quickly, but if the copper is purified well, it is believed that it could be made into good quality artillery which could be traded in the West and if those lands were populated, it would be available in great quantities and all of bronze, because those made of iron are quickly used up/worn out.
Because in this land there is a lack of personnel for all the positions and those very few of those who are born there apply for these posts that are necessary for the launching of the armadas. It appears that they work out correctly by forcing many lads who are vagabonds, particularly mestizos, mulatos and gold negros {?orros} to take those positions as carpenters, caulkers, rope-makers, turners, and blacksmiths, so that there would be an abundance of workers of all occupations. Moreover, it would be good to teach a good number of negro slaves bought by the Real Hacienda and in this way have a number of workers in the all occupations.
To transport the merchandise and munitions and most of the goods by land from one ocean to another as said, the greatest drawback would be two rivers, which could be traversed by boats on which the loaded arrias could be transported; particularly because we have news that on one of the rivers, a bridge can be easily built.
From Spain, many weapons of offense and defense such as arquebuzes/muskets, which should be available in great quantity and also some cross-bows but few in number [p.180] and of all kinds. To say there should be enough for use on the sea as well as on the land.?{Decir mas en estas dis ay para por mar como para tierra?} The same thing for gunpowder, saltpeter and sulphur, all refined, although some saltpeter and sulphur are available in this land, it is not known if they are available in large quantities. “Cofeletes”, helmets/parts of the key of the crossbow, “muriones” and coats of mail that should come loose and not made into breastplates because they tend to get lost. Chamois leather jackets are also good.
[ON MARGIN: to the others that/should be sent.] It has been experienced that hemp grows well in this land because it has been planted and harvested “en bezes”, but since those who had engaged in growing hemp had no outlet for it and stopped doing this and all the plants were lost so that not one remains. It is only necessary that two or three seeds of hemp be sent from Spain and these planted close to the ports of the West and with this, it will not be necessary to secure cables and ropes for the ships from Spain. In this land, there is a kind of plant they call pita which can be used to make cables and ropes when hemp is not available, but this plant does not exist in the Mar del Poniente, it is brought from the Mar de Lebante where it is available in greater quantity and of better quality. It is necessary to bring a good quantity of new plants to the coast of the West to plant near the ports where it will multiply quickly.
It is also necessary to secure tar and pitch from Spain, although this produced in this land in certain quantities, also canvas for the sails and lamps for the ships and oil for the lamps and other things, nails and bolts for the ships that should be made to order; and aside from this, a quantity of iron as well as nails and bolts necessary for work on the ships.
From Spain should be sent letters of maque and needles and hour-glasses/small vials and needles and thread for the sails/ It would be good to send a person who was skilled in making letters of maque and needles and other items needed in the voyage to the city of Mexico. Also needed are “estrolabios” and forestaffs which are not found here.
Lombard soldiers who are good and good sea men who will lead the ships and navigate the ships should be sent in advance from Spain. In the meantime, there is an abundance of these persons here, especially for ships with oars, also some soldiers who can be assigned to go to the West.
When the ships are ready to for the voyage to the West, it is advisable that other ships be built in the port of Acapulco, in La Navidad where His Majesty would be better served and God willing, when we are back in Nueva España, they will soon be ready to carry out His Majesty’s commands.
[p.181] And because carpenters, iron workers, sawyers, caulkers, rope makers and other workers in other occupations are necessary for the launching of the ships and armadas refuse as much as they can to go to the ports of the Mar del Poniente, it is necessary that these personnel and other sea men that are needed be compelled, by paying each one a good price for the work they will carry out. And since in this city of Mexico and its region, not enough persons with these qualifications can be found, it is necessary that His Majesty order that in whatever part of his domain in Nueva Galicia, Guatemala and other parts of the Indies where there are personnel and sea men and ‘lonbarderos’ and artillery and other important and necessary things for the proper provision of said armadas be sent and the personnel should be paid a fair salary or price.
And in the same way, if in the ships and fleets that come here from Spain, there are some personnel of whatever occupation and ‘lonbarderos’ and people of the sea and artillery or ammunition of anchors or cables and any other items that may be needed for the armadas, and even if these personnel and items be taken from said ships to provide what is needed, and paying the personnel the just price or salary.
Also, it is important that in the surroundings of the port of Acapulco and other ports and rivers near it, a nursery of trees be planted as a source of good wood for the planks so that the wood can be gathered because in a few years there will be a lack of good wood for building ships.
It is also advisable that in the area of the port of Acapulco, some sites may be set aside for livestock for the provisions of said port and armadas.

Concerning the voyage that has to be undertaken
The voyage that with the help of God I believe we should undertake from Nueva España toward the West should be done by the beginning of October this year of sixty one or the start of November and if we can [p. 182] set sail during this period, we will navigate toward the west taking the southeast course 600 leagues until we reach fourteen and a half degrees north and from the port sail straight to the West in search of Sant Bartolome which is found at fourteen to fourteen and a half decrees elevation.
We should try to explore the island to see if it is populated and in what part there is water because it is very important that in this island there should be sweet/potable water even if it is uninhabited because it is six hundred ninety leagues more or less to Nueva España than to the Moluccas and the Philippines, and if we can take on water and firewood on the way to and back if the return voyage does not require anything else, it should be that this island should be inhabited because it is of great advantage as a transit point, even if it were to be settled in by criminals who deserve the sentence of death or life imprisonment.
After taking on water and firewood in San Bartolome, the voyage should sail to the west quadrant of the southeast until descending one degree and a half which is up to three degrees and from here sail directly to the west toward the island of Botaha, which is one of the Yslas de los Ladrones and continuing at the elevation of thirteen degrees cannot be missed. From San Bartolome up to this island is a distance of three hundred and thirty leagues. The Yslas de los Ladrones are numerous and thirteen of them are said to be inhabited by people who are naked and poor, eat rice and where there are many coconut trees, and they have salt and catch fish with fish hooks made of sea shells and turtles’ carapace, they do not have any iron objects and on the canoes they sail on, they carry a counter-weight in one part of the canoe and they use sails made of mats and triangular in shape. It would be important to explore this island or any of the others to learn the distance they have traveled and when they are in the Moluccas and the Philippines because in San Bartolome, they could err in finding another island that was at the same elevation and farther away. The eleven islands of the thirteen that are inhabited are in the region of the island of Botaa toward the north.
From the Yslas de los Ladrones to go toward the Philippine Islands, the course to be taken should be toward the west quadrant of the southeast descending to eleven degrees or less and from here to proceed directly to the west until reaching the islands, which are a little less than three hundred seventy leagues from the island of Botaha.
However, if we cannot leave Nueva España until after the tenth of November and from there up to the 20th of January or a few days later, we should sail directly toward the southeast toward New Guinea until we reach the twenty five or thirty degrees on the south part of the equinox. If we are unable to find the coast of this island because it rises toward the Antartic Pole or toward the Strait of Magellan, there is hope of rising, although not by the coast which extends toward the [p.183] west, and to the southeast quadrant when we reach thirty degrees. I have modern maps with me that have come to Nueva España where that coast is drawn one hundred leagues longer that what has been discovered, but despite this, if one proceeds southeast from the last cape discovered in the west part, we will find it before we reach thirty degrees. And if the coast of New Guinea is not found, if the weather permits, we will sail from the thirty degrees point directly toward the West for two hundred leagues or more, and if we still cannot find it, two hundred leagues from this last point thirty degrees, proceed to the west northeast and west until we reach the last cape that has been discovered which is at five degrees according to the figure stated in my report on said coast.
And depending on the time we find ourselves on said coast of New Guinea and if the weather permits, we shall sail following the course that we believe leads to the Philippines, at the latest at the start of November of the year sixty two. It seems that if we leave the port of Acapulco at the latest on or before January 20 when the weather is favorable, then in a few days we shall cross the equinox which is what we should try to do so we do not experience the calm that usually takes place beneath the equinox. And this way, navigating through the south of the equinox at the proper time stated previously, we will have time to find the said coast of New Guinea and many other islands that may be there.
And if we are unable to leave Nueva España during the month of January in order to navigate toward the south, we shall wait until the month of March or earlier until there is good weather to be able to navigate through the Artic or North Pole, following the coast of Nueva España that runs toward the west northeast and if the weather permits, even if it is a little far from the coast. We shall navigate until we reach the height of thirty four degrees or more where we shall find the land discovered by Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo and take what we need from that island. The natives informed us by sign language of a large body of water that existed, which they had told Cabrillo about, and we went in search of it following the coast to see if it could be the ocean and the end of that land, and we would learn thru signs if the water was sweet or salty. And it being God’s will that we discover what that was, we turned around from there toward the West, taking the southeast direction until we descended to thirty seven or thirty five degrees. And from this point, we navigated directly toward the west, discovering what existed between this land and that of [p.184] China, even close to the islands of Japan. If at first, we do not discover anything of such magnitude we shall be contented with it and from there we shall continue our voyage toward the Philippine Islands without sailing anymore toward the West in case we cannot follow this coast west of Nueva España as stated, we shall ascend until we reach the elevation of thirty seven degrees and from there, proceed West until we reach the meridian of the Island of Botaha, which is part of the Ladrones. And from here we shall navigate to said Yslas de los Ladrones so as not to go off course {?por no herrar la nabegacion} and from there proceed to the Philippines.
I have planned these voyages so that if we are unable to leave Nueva España by the beginning of November this year, a late departure would mean that we would not reach our destination. When we lack time to accomplish what Your Mercy has ordered we shall not be able to undertake the return because it is advisable that we depart as soon as we can without waiting for fair weather because these periods do not last long. And for this reason we should depart from there so that when good weather comes, we will be much closer to the Yslas de los Ladrones and we should not wait in the ports of the Philippines for the hurricanes, even if we have to make the voyage through the strength of our arms, because if we do not do this, we might experience what befell the previous voyages or we would have to wait another year, which would be a great inconvenience, since the waters in those islands have worms that destroy the ships and also because the Portuguese may hear about us and some harmful incidents may occur and in addition, it is not good to remain among the natives for a long time because they have a bad disposition and the Spaniards as well when they are in a place for much time tend to behave in such a way so that friendships do not last long. And all these drawbacks will be disadvantageous to this voyage.
And if we have to wait in Nueva España until the beginning of the October of the year sixty two, this is also unsuitable because the ships lose much if they do not sail for a long time and the expenses will increase. And to avoid all these and take advantage of the time to discover what there is in whatever parts, it is advisable that if the ships are in danger, we should set sail if Your Mercy shall not order anything else.
[p.185] In the event that what we discover on this voyage does not fall within the pledge and we find it to be a good land and its natives ask some Spaniards to remain with them, it will be necessary for Your Mercy to advise us if it is prohibited or not that a captain with some men and priests remain there so that the wishes of Your Mercy will be carried out.
News has been received in Nueva España that the French have discovered a passage toward the Mar del Poniente of this Nueva España through the land of the {?bacallos} that goes toward the north and going around the Poniente at a height of seven degrees and more, and navigating to the West, taking the southeast, they descended to below fifty degrees and found open sea to be able to sail through it easily toward China and the Spice territories and Peru and Nueva España and all other parts which may be reached through this Mar del Poniente. And on their way back to France, the followed the coast of the land of Florida, which is on the northern part and there found a way out to the sea of Spain and France that is not at such an elevation as the place where they had first entered, because there was no more than forty something degrees and not more than fifty degrees where they disembarked. And because the Captain Pero Melendez knows all about what happened according to the news we received here, he will report on this to Your Mercy. I will say more on how important it is to that an attempt be made to find out the truth from Spain and to see and to find the passage as has been stated and since the land was populated, the narrowest part of the strait or the part that seems most suitable as a transit point should be populated so that ships that come from Spain going to the West and from the West to Spain may stop there, and from there they could obstruct all foreigners who desired to navigate through that strait to go to the Mar del Poniente, since it has been shown that from Spain, one could navigate toward China and the Moluccas and the other parts of the Mar del Poniente and much money could be saved if the trade with the Spice Islands would be done through Nueva España or any other part that the armadas would find to be populated and provided with everything necessary.
And to carry out this work, it is necessary that a person who is conversant and experienced in matters of the sea and land and zealous about doing the will of God and His Mercy, and according to what general Pero Menendez learned, he can be recommended for this work. But another who has the qualifications and although certain that this business is important to Your Mercy, I plead that in what concerns this as well as all other matters I speak about in this narrative and report, be accepted from me with the will with which I serve with my limited strength that although the Virrey Don Luis [p.186] de Velasco has ordered me to make a report to Your Majesty on some matters which appear to me concern those discoveries. The zeal for service to God and Your Majesty has given me reason to discuss this and if it appears that this report contains any item that would be useful for your service, to order it to be done and although the Virrey Don Luis de Belasco will be very careful on matters concerning this business, it would still be more effective if Your Majesty would command him to do so.

(SIGNATURE: Fai Andres de Urdaneta. SYMBOL: Cross of St. Andrew with “besantes” in the hollows.)

AGI. Patronato 23, R.15.
Transcribed by Iosu Etxezarraga Ortuondo

[Page 187]

Declaration of Urdaneta regarding sovereignty over the Moluccas

The longitude that I, Fray Andres de Urdaneta, professed friar of the Order of St. Augustin, find from the two Portuguese navigation models that I have in my possession, having taken them myself in the City of Lisbon in the year 1538, is of 370 leagues more to the west of the Island of San Anton, which is one of the islands of the Cabo Verde which is the farthermost to the west than all the others, that in its middle it has a latitude 17º (torn) until the islands of the Moluccas and the other islands of that region and the coast of the land of China, due to which declaration I presuppose is a meridian line whose extremes cross the equinox, arrive at the Arctic and Antarctic poles, being thus a semicircle, which meridian line is from the middle of the island of San Anton until the west directly through the parallel of the 17º and ? in an altitude the center of which is 370 leagues, which is 22º in longitude and 7 (minutes), and this meridian line will be the demarcation line of the discoveries and conquests that for those parts of the Indies and other new lands belong to the Royal Crown of Castile on the one hand, and that of Portugal on the other. It is convenient to know that what belongs to Castile begins at the meridian line is all that goes toward the west until a longitude of 180º, and what belongs to Portugal is all that goes toward the east for another 180º of longitude.
The major model has the coasts of Flanders, France and Spain until the strait of Gibraltar, with the islands that are near this region, specially England and Scotland and the islands of Açores, Canaria and Madera and those of the Cabo Vede and from the Strait of Gibraltar on the side of Africa that continues to the land, passing the equinox until the Cabo de Buena Esperanza that is 34º and ? in an altitude at the portion of the Antarctic or South Pole and from there [p.188] continues until the Vermejo sea or Meca strait, and from there to the sea and the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean until the Cape of Comorin which is the closest cape to the equinox of the territory of the coast of Malabar, which cape is in the model at 8º altitude in the north. Also included in this model is the island of San Lorenço and many other islands that are in this navigation, up to the island of Çeilan which is near the cape of Comorin; included also is the coast of Brazil in one portion until beyond the Rio de la Plata up to the river (illegible) and even farther .
The other model is that of dry land from the coast of Maguadazo which is 13º latitude in the northern part of the port of the same name until the Cape of Chinches which is in the Chinese coast and is 25º in altitude along the same northern portion, where part of the Rubro sea and Persian Gulf enter, the Capes of Comorin and Malaca and many other provinces of the coast of this land, and the islands of Ceylan, Camatra, Java, Burney and Timor and the islands of Bandan and Anilipa and those of Ma (torn) with those of Los Ladrones, and many others that are not named here.
And because the world is round or spherical, since the voyages and discoveries that have been made are marked in flat charts, taking into account the directions of the navigation, it can be reduced to corresponding degrees of longitude, which is what I pretend to know and have written these degrees of longitude that exist from said meridian line until the islands of Malaca (torn) [180], degrees of longitude that belong to the Royal Crown of Portugal , a navigation that has been done according to these models and as (torn).
From the island of San Anton until the (torn) 370 leagues which I declare are in the parallel of the (torn) 17º and ? (ALSO IN DOC) latitude 22º and ? (IN DOC) longitude, knowing that each degree of longitude of the (torn) are .... 57 minutes, 13 seconds and 15 "terceros" (a fraction) of those of the equinoctial, reducing the longitude to leagues, give us 16 leagues, 2 miles and 67 long steps, calculating a league at 3 miles (at the right margin: 22º 10').
Navigating from San Anton (torn), the point of the 17º and ? (QUESTION MARK IS IN DOC) latitude of the east southeast (direction) until (torn)"maginta" of (torn) 8º 48' longitude, and the end is a point 10 leagues (torn) (at right margin: 8º 48').
Navigating from said point of 14º latitude by (torn) 7º we travel 7º 7' (torn) that is at the entry of the Santa Ana river, in the coast of (at right margin: 7º 7').
Navigating from the point of (torn) degrees (torn) degrees we travel 7º 47' longitude (torn) and the end is a point that is II leagues of the Santa Ana (torn) river (at right margin: 7º 47').
Navigating from the point (torn) degrees latitude along the east (torn) 16º 44' longitude, and end at a point that is 30 leagues from the Sant River (torn) (at right margin: 16º 44') (at right margin totals: 62º 6').

Navigating from said point of 4º altitude along the southeast quarter of the south up to 1º of the southern part of the equinoctial we travel 3º 20' longitude, and end at a point that is eleven leagues of Cabo Gonçalez (at right margin: 3º 20').
Navigating from said point of 1º altitude along the south quarter of the southeast until we reach an altitude of 17º toward the same part of the south we travel 3º 14' longitude and end at a point that is 11 leagues of the Cabo Negro east west with the (at right margin: 3º 14').
Navigating from said point of 17º altitude along the southeast until we reach an altitude of 26º we travel 4º longitude, and end at a point (illegible) leagues of Angra Pequeña (at right margin: 4º).
Navigating from said point of 26º altitude along the south quarter of the southeast until we reach an altitude of 28º we travel 26' longitude, and end at a point that is 8 leagues plus the west of a port that is at the same altitude (at right margin: degrees 26 minutes),
Navigating from said point 28º along the south southeast until we reach an altitude of 35º we travel 3º 25' longitude and end at a point that is 9 leagues of the Cabo de Buena Esperanza almost north south with the (incomplete) (at right margin: 1º 25')
And it seems that this sum (illegible) from said line of demarcation until the Cabo de Buena Esperanza is 76 º31' longitude.
Continuing said navigation from the point of said 35º altitude along the east quarter of the northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 34º [p. 190] we travel 6º 6' longitude and the location is 12 leagues of land /21 (at right margin: 6º 6').
Navigating from said point 34º along (illegible) northeast until we descend to an altitude 13º we travel 2º 54' and end at a point that is 3 leagues of the Ryo del Ynfante (at right margin" 2º 54').
Navigating from said point 33º altitude along the northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 25º 9' we travel 9º 10' longitude and end at a point that is ten leagues of dry land (at right margin: 9º 10').
Navigating from said point 25º altitude along the east northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 24º we travel 2º 39' longitude and end at a point that is ten leagues more toward the east of the Cabo de Corrientes (at right margin: 2º 39').
Navigating from said point of 24º altitude along the north northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 17º, we travel 3º 6' longitude, and end at a point that is an islet ten leagues from (torn) (at right margin: 3º 6').
Navigating from said point of 17º altitude along the northeast quarter of the north until we decrease to an altitude of 13º, we travel 2º 46' longitude, and end at a point that is 15 leagues of land in front of the river (torn)) (at right margin: 2º 46').
Navigating from said point of 13º altitude along the north quarter of the northeast until we decrease by a degree of the equinoctial, we travel degrees and 24' longitude, and end at a point that is two leagues of dry land (at right margin: 2º 24').
Navigating from said point of one degree altitude on the southern part along the (illegible) until increading to 3º altitude at the northern part of the equinoctial, we travel 6 º longitude, and end at a point (illegible) (at right margin: 6º).
Navigating from said point of 3º altitude along the east northeast until we reach an altitude of 5º, we travel [4º 50' longitude and end at a point that is ] (torn) las Baxas 16 leagues (at right margin: 4º 50').
Navigating from said point of 10º altitude along (illegible) until we reach an altitude of 17 degrees, we travel 2º 59' longitude and end at a point that is (illegible) (at right margin: 2º 59') (at right margin: totals: 62º 38').
At the same time I say that, because of some Portuguese models that I have in my possession, which I myself collected in the city of Lisbon very secretly from the house of a boatswain I met in India, and I can show how not only are the islands of Malaca within the demarcation of His Majesty but that there are more that are toward their west. These models were drawn when the Portuguese were not as careful as they are today, and I have had them for over 28 years. The larger chart contains the route that the Portuguese followed from Spain to the Cabo de Comorin and the island of Ceylan, and the said Cabo is situated 8º (torn) latitude north. It is in the coast of Malabar, in the kingdom of Calicut. The other chart is smaller and contains the navigation of India from the Rubro sea until the Moluccas, the islands of Los Ladrones and the Papuas. It even contains the Cabo de Chinches that is on the Chinese coast, and is more or less 25º in altitude of the equinoctial on the north.
I say that in the larger model the meridian of the island of San Anton is 1º in the equinoctial one point, and from there 370 leagues to the west in the equinox, if a line is drawn that goes to the Artic and Antarctic Poles, according to the agreement made by our Kings and the King of Portugal, and as I said at other times that, measuring the degrees that exist along the equinoctial from said demarcation line until the meridian of said Cape of Comorin, said chart has 140º longitude, measuring them directly along the east; and in the smaller chart, placed in the meridian of the Cabo de Comorin in the equinox, there are 45º longitude from the point to said Moluccas, which, if added to the 14º degrees longitude of the larger chart, add up to 185º, and deducting from these the 180º that belong to the king of Portugal, leaving 5º and many more behind the demarcation, it is clear that said 5º longitude plus the Moluccas belong to His Majesty. But measuring the degrees of longitude from the directions of the chart there will be more degrees of longitude in His Majesty's demarcation.
The said island of San Anton is more at the east of the demarcation line, 22º 10' longitude for so many to correspond to the 370 leagues through the parallel of 17º and ? (QUESTION MARK IN DOC) (at right margin: 22º 10').
Navigating from said island of San Anton at the point of 17º and ? laitude along the east southeast until we decrease to an altitude of 14º at the same part of the north, we proceed 8º 48' longitude, and end at a point that is 10 leagues of the Cabo Verde, which is dry land (at right margin: 8º 48').
Navigating from said point of 14º latitude along the southeast until we decrease to an altitude of 7º latitude, we proceed 7º 17' longitude, and end at a point that is close to an island that is at the entrance of the Santa Ana River which is in the coast of Guynea (at right margin: 7º 7').
Navigating from said point of 7º along the east southeast until we decrease to an altitude of 4º, we proceed 7º 17' longitude, and end at a point that is 11 leagues of the San Andres River nor south with it. (at right margin: 7º 17')
Navigating from said point of 4º latitude along the east 292 leagues we proceed to 16º 44' longitude, and end at a point that is 9 leagues of the San Bartolome River north south with it. (at right margin: 16º 44').
Navigating from said point of 4º degree latitude along the southeast quarter of the south until a degree of altitude of the southern part of the equinoctial, we proceed 3º 20 longitude, and end at a point that is 13 leagues at Cabo Gonçalez (at right margin: 3º 20').
Navigating from said point of one degree altitude along the south quarter of the southeast until 17º latitude up to the Antarctic Pole, we proceed 3º 14' longitude, and end at a point that is 11 leagues of Cabo Negro eat southeast with it, (at right margin: 3º 15') (at right margin: totals 68º 40')
Navigating from said point of 17º along the south southeast until an altitude of 24º, we proceed 4º longitude, and end at a point that is a little farther above Angra Pequeña (at right margin; 4º).
Navigating from said point of 24º altitude along the south quarter of the southeast until an altitude of 28º, we proceed 26º longitude, and and at a point that is 8 leagues more to the west of a port that is at the same altitude and has no name (at right margin: degrees 26 minutes).
[p. 193]
Navigating from said point of 28º altitude along the south southeast until an altitude of 35º, we proceed 3º 25' longitude, and end at a point that is 9 leagues of the Cabo de Buena Esperanza almost north south with it (at right margin: 3
All of these added give a total of 76º 31' and we can say that there are many of longitude from the said line of demarcation until the meridian of the Cabo de Buena Espernza.
Continuing the said navigation from the point 35º altitude along the east 8 leagues are traveled 1º 57' longitude, and end at a point that is close to the Cabo de Agujas (at right margin: 1º 57')
Navigating from said point of 35º altitude along the east quarter if the northeast until we decrease to 34º longitude, we proceed 6º 6' longitude, and end at a point that is 12 leagues of land (at right margin: 6º 6').
Navigating from said point of 34º along the east northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 33º, we proceed 2º 54' longitude, and end at a point that is 8 leagues of the Ryo del Ynfante (at right margin: 2º 54').
Navigating from said point of 33 altitude along the northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 25º, we proceed 9º 10' longitude, and end at a point that is 10 leagues of dry land. (at right margin: 0º 10').
Navigating from said point of 25º altitude along the east northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 24º, we proceed 2º 39' longitude, and end at a point that is 10 leagues farther to the east of the Cabo de Corrientes. (at right margin: 2º 39')
Navigating from said point of 24º altitude along the north northeast until we decrease to an altitude of 17º, we proceed 3º 6' longitude, and at a point that is an island 10 leagues of the Ryo Angoxar which is (torn) of land. (at right margin: 3º 6').
Navigating from the said point of 17º altitude along the northeast quarter of the north until we decrease to a latitude of 1º, we proceed 2º 46' longitude, and end at a point that is 15 leagues of land in front of the San Miguel River (at right margin: 2º 46').
Navigating from said point of 13º altitude along the north quarter of the northeast until we decrease to 1º of the equinoctial of the same [p. 194] southern portion, we proceed 2º 24' longitude, and end at a point that is two leagues of dry land. (at right margin: 2º 24').
Navigating from said point of 1º altitude of the southern part and along the northeast quarter (illegible) until we reach an altitude of 3º of the equinoctial for the portion of the north, we proceed 6º/36 exact longitude, and end at a point that is at the mouth of the Cove of Madaguaxo (at right margin: 6º).
Navigating from said point of 3º altitude along the east northeast until we reach 5º latitude, we proceed 4º 50' longitude, and end at a point that is 16 leagues before the tip of the place called Las Baxas 16 leagues. (at right margin: 4º 50')
Navigating from said point of 5º altitude where the point was marked by the northeast quarter of the north, until we reach an altitude of 10º toward the Arctic Pole, we proceed 3º 22', and end at a point that is 4 leagues of dry land. (at right margin: 3º 22').
Navigating from said point of 10º altitude along the north northeast until we reach an altitude of 17º, we proceed 2º 59' longitude, and end at a point that is 5 leagues of Darfur (at right margin: 2º 59). (at right margin total 56º 4').
Navigating from said point of 12º altitude along the east northeast until we reach an altitude of 20º, we proceed 7º 38 longitude, and end at a point that is 9 leagues of the island of Meçira (at right margin: 7º 38')
Navigating from said point of 20º along the northeast quarter of the north until we reach the tropic of Cancer, we proceed 2 º 31' longitude (at right margin: 2º 31').
Navigating from said point of the tropic that is (illegible) leagues of dry land along the east 120 leagues, we proceed 6º 14' longitude, and end at a point that is within the Ryo de Diul (at right martin 6º 14').
Navigating from said point of the Ryo de Diul along the south southeast until we are at the Cabo de Comorin which is at º latitude of the north, we proceed 6º 42' longitude, and end at a point that is the same cape of Comorin, where this model ends (at right margin 6º 42').
And the longitude being totaled, which is from the Cabo de Buena Esperanza until the Cabo de Comorin, I find 71º and 18' which added to the 76º 31 longitude that exist from said demarcation until [p.196] And in accordance with the navigations of this model, there are 23º 55' of longitude from said cape of Comor until Malaca, and from the line of demarcation 171º 44', so that only 8º 16' are lacking to complete the 180º of longitude that belong to Portugal.
Navigating from the aforementioned 2º of altitude that is the entry of the port of Malaca, where the point is found, along the south quarter of the south until going down to the equinoctial, we proceed 1º 20' longitude, and end at a point that is within the equinoctial, 22 leagues east of the island of Comorin (at right margin: 1º 20').
Navigating from said point of the equinoctial which is 22 leagues of Çamatra along the east through the equinoctial 121 leagues and 1 mile, we proceed 6º 56' longitude, with which the 180º of longitude that belong to the king of Portugal are completed, which said point of 180º longitude reaches until entry through the island of Burnei where the equinoctial travels 37 leagues.From the cape of Comorin to this point there are 32º 11' longitude (at right margin: 6º 56'). (at right margin: 55º 16/ 56º 4'/ 68º 40'/180º 00).
(Illegible) 180º of longi/ (itude) (illegible) southeast one will arrive at the Arctic Pole and the other at the Antarctic Pole. From this such line it comes spherical, a circle (illegible) of the 370 leagues of the island of San Antonio, dividing the sphere (illegible) in two equal parts, for which reason all the lands and seas discovered and to be discovered toward the east of this meridian (illegible) the Royal Crown of Castile (illegible) one end of a bay that is at the northeast of said (illegible) i8 3º and? of altitude (illegible) equinox for the part of (illegible) which said bay (illegible) than that of dry land (illegible) north, and that of the Azmelano is at the southeast quarter of the south 10 leagues of said (illegible) 2º (illegible) north.
Following the said meridian line (illegible) 12 (illegible) the portion of the north (illegible) that is 20ºand ? of altitude (illegible) and is 50 leagues (ilegible) taking some/15 of the quarter of the west (illegible) of the tropic at the mouth of the river (illegible) to the part of the west of it.
And on the southern part of said island of Burnei the meridional line that goes (illegible) 48 leagues from where the equinox in the said island of Burnei enters through the part (illegible) altitude of 1º and ? (torn) the southern part of the equinox (illegible) crosses said meridian line over the island of (illegible) leagues of travel that (illegible) said meridian line that the coast (illegible) on the eastern part (illegible) 7º and ? of the southern part of the equinox (illegible) Castile 20 leagues of the coast of Java on the part (illegible).
And based on these navigations of this minor model there are 23º and 55” longitude from the Cabo de Comorin up to the Malay Peninsula and 171º 44” from the demarcation line, so that only 8º 16” are lacking for the 180º 16” longitude that pertain to Portugal.
Sailing from said two degrees of latitude where the entry to said port of the Malay Peninsula where the point remains, in the direction toward the southeast point of the south until descending to the equinox, is within 1º 20” longitude, and the point remains within the equinox, 22 leagues to the west of the island of Çamatra. (On the right margin, 1º 20
Sailing from the said point of the equinox that is 22 leagues from Çamatra in the direction of the east by the equinox 121 leagues and I mile, there are 6º 56” of longitude, which here make up the 180º of longitude that pertain to the king of Portugal, said point of 180º longitude extends up to the entry through the island of Burnei, where the equinox is at 37 leagues. From said Cabo de Comorin to said point there are 32º 11 minutes of longitude. (at right margin: 6º 56 “) (at right margin total: 55º 16”/56º 4”/68º 40”/180º 00)
(illegible) 180º of longitude (illegible) southeast one reaches the Artic Pole and the other the Antarctic Pole. From this line, it is convenient to (illegible) spherical a circle (illegible) in two equal parts, and for this reason all the lands and seas that have been discovered and will be discovered on the eastern part of this meridian (illegible) Royal Crown of Castile (illegible) a point in a bay that is toward the northeast of said (illegible) at 3º and ? of elevation (illegible) equinox for the part of the (illegible) which said bay (illegible) that of the continent (illegible) north, and that of Azmelano are toward the southeast quarter south 10 leagues of said (illegible) 2 degrees (illegible) north.
And from said line of the meridian (illegible)/12 (illegible) the part of the north (illegible) that is at 20º and ? elevation (illegible) and is 50 leagues (illegible) taking some/ 15 of the quadrant of the west (illegible) is in the tropics at the wharf of the river of (illegible) on the western part of [e]l.
And on the south part of said island of Burnei, said meridian line exits which goes (illegible) 48 leagues to where the equinox enters in the said island of Burnei through the part (illegible) elevation of one degree and ? (torn) the part south of the equinox (illegible) crosses said line of the meridian over the island of (illegible) leagues or crossing that (illegible) said line of the meridian that the coast (illegible) on the eastern part (illegible) 7 degrees and ? on the part south of the equinox (illegible) Castile 20 long leagues from the coast of Java through the part (illegible).

And from this (illegible) equinox inside the island of Burney, through which the said meridian line passes (illegible) 250 leagues along the equinox, which are 14º of longitude (illegible). From these two models there are of longitude (illegible) 370 leagues more toward the west of the island of San Anton above (illegible) which is a fourth of a degree toward the west.
So segund(ilegible) island of Burney enters with the city thus named in the demarcation of Castile (illegible) gold can be found there. The part of the island (illegible) also enters. Also part of the island of Java. As has been said, this island has gold in some parts (illegible) and there and other metals in it (illegible) and the one of Aramarran and Luçarranguete and (illegible) and likewise the island of Timor (illegible) and others within its region. Included also the large island of (illegible) a great quantity of iron, and the islands(illegible) in the northern coast of this island, which are famous for being rich in gold. Included also are the islands of (illegible). Also the islands of Bandan, where a great amount of "nuez moscada" is available and the islands of (illegible) where there is clove and the island of (torn)endanao where there is cinnamon. And there is gold in the islands of the Philippines and Celebes and pearls (illegible) and more in the island of Burney in (illegible) and many other islands (illegible) that have been discovered but which I do not name. Entry is from the coast of China until the abovementioned river which is 21º and ? in altitude, that continues along the coast until (illetible) that is up to Japan, which has many very rich provinces (illegible) where the islands of los Lequios (illegible) are included. Also included are all the islands of Los Negros, Nueva Guinea and Los Ladrones, with many others that may exist (illegible) but have not been discovered. From (illegible) enters the demarcation (illegible) of the said meridian line (illegible) through the island of (illegible) China and the island of Java toward (illegible). There is ginger in these islands.
(illegible) 18º of longitude through the equinox (illegible) 370 leagues (illegible) of the said island of San Anton toward the west near the islands (illegible) in the (illegible) 180º in longitude (illegible) of all the navigation above (illegible) degrees of longitude is through the table of number of "eretos" curvatures. Putting as an example the diameter of said curvature is 60000 parts and 90º per degree.

Fray Andres de Urdaneta (signed)

BnF. MSS. Espagnol. 325, fol. 1
Transcribed by Ondare Kultur Kudeaketa

[1] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 16, fol. 202.
[2] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 16, fol. 213.
[3] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 16, fol. 232.
[4] Mitchell, Mairin, Friar Andrés de Urdaneta, O.S.A. Mac Donald and Evans Ltd., 1964, London. Page 132.
[5] Arteche, José de, Urdaneta. Sociedad Guipuzcoana de Publicaciones S.A., 1968, Page 195.

[6] VV.AA. Tesoros de la cartografía española. Madrid 2001. Prologue, page 23.
[7] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 24, fol. 9.
[8] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 19.
[9] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 6.
[10] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 1.
[11] BnF-MSS-Espagnol. 325, fol. 1.
[12] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 2.
[13] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 7.
[14] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 3.
[15] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 4.
[16] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, fol. 5.
[17] Gil, Juan. Mitos y Utopias del Descubrimiento. 2. El Pacifico. Madrid, Alianza 1989, pp. 67.
[18] AGI. Indiferente general, 1967, L. 16, F 184V.
[19] AGI. Pasajeros, L.5, E. 542.
[20] AGI. Filipinas 6, No. 1.
[21] Schurz, William Lytle. The Manila Galleon. E. P. Dutton & Co., Inc., New York. Page 277.
[22] San Agustin, Gaspar de. Conquistas de las islas Filipinas, 1565-1616. Madrid 1698.
[23] Fernández de Navarette, Martin. Colección de los viajes y descubrimientos que hicieron por mar los españoles. Volume XVII, page 661.
[24] Hidalgo Nuchera, Patricio. Los primeros de Filipinas. Miraguano editions, Madrid, 1995. Page 53.
[25] AGI. Patronato 24, R. 9.
[26] Schurz, William Lytle, Ibidem. Page 107-126.
[27] AGI. Filipinas 329, L.2, F9R-14R.
[28] AGI. Patronato 18, R.5.
[29] Grant Keddie, Japanese Shipwrecks in British Columbia. Royal British Columbia Museum.
[30] Schurz, William Lytle. Ibidem. Page 196.
[31] Cheong, W.E., “The decline of Manila as a Spanish Entrepot”. Philippine Historical Review, V (1972). Page 205-224

[1] Echegaray, Carmelo de and Múgica, Serapio de, Villafranca de Guipúzcoa, Monografía Histórica. Irún 1908. Appendix No. 2, page 386.
[2] Isasti, Lope de. Compedio historial de Guipúzcoa. Chapter X, page 108.
[3] Deed of the settlement of accounts between Juan de Isasaga and Juan Ochoa de Urdaneta, residents of Villafranca and guardians of Juan López de Amézqueta, Lord of Amézqueta, Alzaga and Yarza. Executed before García de Isasaga, clerk of court of Villafranca. Archivo Histoórico de Loyola PP. Jesuitas. Fondo Familia Loyola and links.
[4] Archive of protocols of the University of Oñate, No. 31, folio 83
[5] Rumeu de Armas, Antonio. El Tratado de Tordesillas , rivalidad hispano-lusa por el dominio de océanos y continentes. Mapfre, Madrid 1992.
[6] Branquinho, Isabel. <>. Revista Mare Liberum Nº 8, Lisbon. December 1994.
[7] Thomaz, Luis Filipe F.R. <>. Annals of history of Além. Mar. Lisbon, Volume IV, year 2003.
[8] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 9
[9] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, folio 1.
[10] AGI. Patronato 49, R. 12, folio 2.
[11] AGI. Patronato 32, R. 23.
[12] Prieto, C. The Pacific Ocean, Spanish navigators in the XVI century. Page 58-59.
[13] León-Portilla, Miguel. Hernan Cortés and the Mar del Sur. Ediciones de Cultura Hispanica, 1985. Page 34.
[14] AGI. Indiferente general 415, folio 16-23.
[15] AGI. Indiferente general 415, folio 16-23.
[16] C. Prieto, Ibidem. Appendix No. 6, pages 173-174.
[17] AGI. Patronato 37, R. 17.
[18] Gil, Juan, Mitos y utopias del Descubrimiento, Myths and utopias of the Discovery, Volume 2, page 27. Madrid 1989.
[19] AGL Indiferente general 422, L. 17, folio 49V.
[20] Euskaltzaindia. Academy of the Basque Language. Private collection Juan Carlos Guerra. “Hernando de Guevara issues a letter of debenture [¿carta de obligación] in favor of his brother Ochoa Bañez de Artazubiaga, for 200 ducats that he gave in cash and good for the voyage that was sailing for the island of Amaluco, before the notary public Francisco de Perez and the witnesses Juan Sebastian Elcano and Andrés de Urdaneta. Valladolid, s/d 10. Both transcripts in Rodríguez, Isacio, Historia de la Provincia Agustiniana del Santisimo Nombre de Jesús; volume XIII. Manila 1978.
[21] AGI. Patronato 37, R. 36 1-34.
[22] AGI. Patronato 37, R 36 35-65.
[23] Library of the Palace. No. 432.
[24] Fernández de Navarrete, Martín. Documents concerning Fray García de Loaísa and Alvaro de Saavedra. No. XIV: Sea-charte of the voyage and navigation of the armada of Loaisa from its departure in La Coruña up to 1 June 1526; events on the ship Victoria after its separation from the armada; and description of the coasts and seas traversed: all addressed to the King by Hernando de la Torre. Imprenta Nacional. Madrid 1837.
[25] ANTT. EC 11-166-97.

[26] Fernández de Oviedo, Gonzalo. Historia General y Natural de las Indias. Book XX, Chapter XXX. Valladolid 1587.
[27] Transcribed in Fernández de Navarrete, Eustaquio. Historia de Juan Sebastián del Cano. Vitoria 1872. Apend. Doc. XX, page 321.
[28] Landín Carrasco, Amancio. Islario Español del Pacifico. ICC Madrid 1984.
[29] Pastells, Pablo. Historia general de Filipinas desde los primeros descubrimientos de los portugueses y castellanos en Oriente, Occidente y Mediodía hasta la muerte de Legazpi. Barcelona, 1925-1936. Page 130-131.
[30] Spate, O.H.K. El lago español. Casa Asía, España 2006. Page 141.
[31] Biblioteca de Palacio. No. 432, Folio 29, lines 7-10.
[32] ANTT. Cartas dos Vice-reis da India. NA 876, Doc. 20.
[33] ANTT. Letter of Tristán de Ataide to the Conde de Vimioso from the Moluccas, 20 February 1534. As gavetas de T. del T. IX p.232ss.
[34] AGI. Indiferente general 422, L.17, F 31V-32R.
[35] AGI. Indiferente general 422, L.17, F49V.
[36] Fernandez de Oviedo, Gonzalo. Historia General y Natural de las Indias. Book XX, chapter 34. Valladolid 1557.
[37] AGI. Patronato 34, R. 13.
[38] Fernandez de Oviedo, Gonzalo, Historia General y Natural de las Indias. Volume II, page 303.
[39] Cuevas, P. Mariano. Monje y Marino. Editorial Layac. Mexico 1543. Page 37.
[40] AGI. Patronato 39, R. 14.
[41] AGI. Patronato 46, R. 10.
[42] Fernandez de Oviedo, Gonzalo. Ibidem. Volume VI, chapter XV.
[43] Fernandez de Oviedo, Gonzalo. Ibidem. Volume XXI, chapter II.
[44] Cuevas, P. Mariano. Ibidem. Page 127.
[45] AGI. Justicia, 290, folio 46.
[46] Leon Portilla, Miguel. Hernán Cortés y la Mar del Sur. Ediciones Cultura Hispánica, 1985. Page 118.
[47] AGI. Patronato 46, R. 4.
[48] ANTT. As gavetas. IX, page 365.
[49] AGI. Patronato 20, No. 5, R. 13.
[50] Weber, David J., The Spanish Frontier in North America. Yale University Press, 1992. Page 67.
[51] Kelsey, Harry. Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. The Henry E. Huntington Library, 1986. Page 120.
[52] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 15.
[53] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 15.
[54] Francisco de Icaza, Diccionario autobiografico de conquistadores y pobladores de Nueva España. Madrid. Imprenta del Adelantado de Segovia, 1923, nº 1361.
[55] Priestley, Herbert Ingram. The Luna Papers. Page 75 and 131.
[56] Mentioned in Hidalgo Nuchera, Patricio. Los primeros de Filipinas, page 31.
[57] Marañon, Gregorio. Antonio Perez. Volume I, page 277.
[58] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 12.
[59] AGI. Patronato 46, R. 10.
[60] AGI. Patronato 18, R. 15.

[61] De Miguel, José R. <>. 2006. Page 245-248.

[62] AGI. Patronato 23, R.12, Folio 20.
[63] AGI. Patronato 23, R.12, Folio 22.
[64] AGI. Patronato 23, R.12.
[65] AGI. Patronato 23, R.15.
[66] AGI, Justicia, 290, fol. 51.
[67] Schurz, William Lytle. The Manila Galleon. E. P. Dutton & Co., New York 1939. Page 247.
[68] AGI. Patronato 23, R.20.
[69] AGI. Patronato 263, No. 1, R.1.
[70] AGI. Patronato 23, R.12.
[71] AGI. México 280.
[72] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 17, fol. 01.
[73] AGI. Patronato 23. R. 16, fol. 56.
[74] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 16, fol. 43.
[75] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 16, fol. 29.
[76] AGI. Patronato 23, R. 16, fol. 12.
[77] Fernandez de Navarrete, Martín. Colección de los viajes y descubrimientos que hicieran por mar los españoles. Madrid 1825-1837. Tmo 17, doc. 5.
[78] AGI. Patronato 23, R.21, fol. 1.
[79] AGI. Patronato 52, R.04, fol. 11.
[80] AGI. Patronato 23, R.12.

[81] AGI. Patronato 23, R.15.

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