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port of Bayonne. Doubting whether Columbus had survived the tempest, he had immediately written to the sovereigns, giving an account of the discovery, and requesting permission to come to court and relate the particulars in person. As soon as the weather was favourable, he again set sail, anticipating a triumphant reception in his native port of Palos. When, on entering the harbour, he beheld the vessel of the admiral riding at anchor, and learned the enthusiasm with which he had been received, his heart died within him. It is said he feared to meet Columbus in this hour of his triumph, lest he should put him under arrest for his desertion on the coast of Cuba; but this is not likely, for he was a man of too much resolution to yield to such a fear. It is more probable that a consciousness of his misconduct made him unwilling to appear before the public in the midst of their enthusiasm for Columbus, and to witness the honours heaped upon a man whose superiority he had been so unwilling to acknowledge. Whatever may have been his motive, it is said that he landed privately in his boat, and kept out of sight until the departure of the admiral, when he returned to his home, broken in health, and deeply dejected, awaiting the reply of the sovereigns to his letter. The reply at length arrived, forbidding his coming to court, and severely reproaching him for his conduct. This letter completed his humiliation; the wounds of his feelings gave virulence to his bodily malady, and in a few days he died, a victim to grief and repentance. Let no one, however, indulge in harsh censures over the grave of Pinzon. His merits and services are entitled to the highest praise; his errors should

be regarded with indulgence. He was one of the first in Spain to appreciate the project of Columbus, animating him by his concurrence, and aiding him with his purse when poor and unknown at Palos. He afterwards enabled him to procure and fit out his ships, when even the mandates of the sovereigns were ineffectual; and finally he embarked in the expedition with his brothers and his friends, staking life, property, every thing, upon the event. He had thus entitled himself to participate largely in the glory of this immortal enterprise, when, unfortunately, forgetting for a moment the grandeur of the cause, and the implicit obedience due to his commander, he yielded to the incitements of selfinterest, and was guilty of that act of insubordination which has cast a shade upon his name. Much may be said, however, in extenuation of his fault: his consciousness of having rendered great services to the expedition, and of possessing property in the ships, and his habits of command, which rendered him impatient of control. That he was a man naturally of generous sentiments and honourable ambition is evident from the poignancy with which he felt the disgrace drawn upon him by his conduct. A mean man would not have fallen a victim to selfupbraiding for having been convicted of a mean action. His story shows how one lapse from duty may counterbalance the merits of a thousand services; how one moment of weakness may mar the beauty of a whole life of virtue; and how important it is for a man, under all circumstances, to be true, not merely to others, but to himself.



Reception of Columbus by the Spanish Sovereigns at Barcelona. [1493.]

THE journey of Columbus to Barcelona was like the progress of a sovereign. Wherever he passed, the surrounding country poured forth its inhabitants, who lined the road, and thronged the villages, rending the air with acclamations. In the large towns, the streets, windows, and balconies were filled with spectators, eager to gain a sight of him and of the Indians whom he carried with him, who were regarded with as much astonishment as if they had been natives of another planet.

It was about the middle of April that he arrived at Barcelona, and the beauty and serenity of the weather, in that genial season and favoured climate, contributed to give splendour to the memorable ceremony of his reception. As he drew near the place, many of the youthful courtiers and cavaliers, followed by a vast concourse of the populace, came forth to meet him. His entrance into this noble city has been compared to one of those triumphs which the Romans were accustomed to decree to conquerors. First were paraded the six Indians, painted according to their savage fashion, and decorated with their ornaments of gold. After these

were borne various kinds of live parrots, together with stuffed birds and animals of unknown species, and rare plants supposed to be of precious qualities; while especial care was taken to display the Indian coronets, bracelets, and other decorations of gold, which might give an idea of the wealth of the newly discovered regions. After this followed Columbus, on horseback, surrounded by a brilliant cavalcade of Spanish chivalry. The streets were almost impassable from the multitude; the houses, even to the very roofs, were crowded with spectators. It seemed as if the public eye could not be sated with gazing at these trophies of an unknown world, or on the remarkable man by whom it had been discovered. There was a sublimity in this event that mingled a solemn feeling with the public joy. It was considered a signal dispensation of Providence in reward for the piety of the sovereigns; and the majestic and venerable appearance of the discoverer, so different from the youth and buoyancy that generally accompany roving enterprise, seemed in harmony with the grandeur and dignity of the achieve


To receive him with suitable distinction, the sovereigns had ordered their throne to be placed in public, under a rich canopy of brocade of gold, where they awaited his arrival, seated in state, with Prince Juan beside them, and surrounded by their principal nobility. Columbus arrived in their presence, accompanied by a brilliant crowd of cavaliers, among whom, we are told, he was conspicuous for his stately and commanding person, which, with his venerable gray hairs, gave him the august appearance of a senator of Rome. A modest

smile lighted up his countenance, showing that he enjoyed the state and glory in which he came; and certainly nothing could be more deeply moving to a mind inflamed by noble ambition, and conscious of having nobly deserved, than these testimonials of the admiration and gratitude of a nation, or rather of a world. On his approach, the sovereigns rose, as if receiving a person of the highest rank. Bending on his knees, he would have kissed their hands in token of vassalage, but they raised him in the most gracious manner, and ordered him to seat himself in their presence; a rare honour in this proud and punctilious court.

He now gave an account of the most striking events of his voyage, and displayed the various productions and the native inhabitants which he had brought from the new world. He assured their

majesties that all these were but harbingers of greater discoveries which he had yet to make, which would add realms of incalculable wealth to their dominions, and whole nations of proselytes to the true faith.

When Columbus had finished, the king and queen sank on their knees, raised their hands to heaven, and, with eyes filled with tears of joy and gratitude, poured forth thanks and praises to God. All present followed their example; a deep and solemn enthusiasm pervaded that splendid assembly, and prevented all common acclamations of triumph. The anthem of Te Deum laudamus, chanted by the choir of the royal chapel, with the melodious accompaniments of instruments, rose up from the midst in a full body of harmony, bearing up, as it were, the feelings and thoughts of the auditors to

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