Published Date

May 1, 2004

Resource Type

Primary Source

This resource was developed in 2004 as part of “The Conquest of Mexico” by Nancy Fitch.

From Hernán Cortés, Cartas y relaciones de Hernan Cortés al emperador Carlos V, fifth letter.

He [the Amerindian Canec] answered that until then he had served no overlord nor knew of any whom he ought to serve, although it was true that five or six years ago people of Tabasco had passed that way and told him how a captain with certain people of our nation had entered their land and three times defeated them in battle, and afterwards had told them that they were to be vassals of a great lord, and all the other things which I was now telling him. He therefore wished to know if this great lord of whom I spoke were indeed the same. I replied that I was the captain of whom the people of Tabasco had spoken, and that if he wished to learn the truth he had only to ask the interpreter with whom he was speaking, Marina, who traveled always in my company after she had been given me as a present with twenty other women. She then told him that what I had said was true and spoke to him of how I had conquered Mexico and of all the other lands which I held subject and had placed beneath Your Majesty’s command. He appeared very pleased to learn of this and said that he also wished to be Your Majesty’s subject and vassal, and that he considered himself most fortunate to be under the sway of a prince so powerful as I told him Your Highness is.