Chapter

Of a Portuguese youth who, while traveling on a ship under full sail in fine weather, dove into the water wearing a balaclava to swim to another ship of the fleet; and how, by god's mercy, he was picked up by a ship following a quarter of a league behind.

Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo

in Misfortunes and Shipwrecks in the Seas of the Indies, Islands, and Mainland of the Ocean Sea (1513–1548)

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780813035406
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038377 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5744/florida/9780813035406.003.0006
Of a Portuguese youth who, while traveling on a ship under full sail in fine weather, dove into the water wearing a balaclava to swim to another ship of the fleet; and how, by god's mercy, he was picked up by a ship following a quarter of a league behind.

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This chapter relates the incident of a rash youth from Portugal who demonstrated his foolishness and God showed His mercy in the face of that youth's vanity. In the year 1514 Governor Pedrarias Dávila crossed over to Tierra Firme with seventeen or eighteen caravels and ships by order of the Catholic Monarch, don Ferdinand, fifth of that name in Castile. On a ship from the village of Palos in which Treasurer Alonso de la Puente and some other soldiers were traveling there was a Portuguese youth. Because his command of Spanish was somewhat shaky, his fellow soldiers and some sailors began to make fun of him to pass the time. That day he had enough of their jibes and said to them that he swore on the body of Deus that if they made him too angry he would jump off the boat and swim to another ship of the fleet.

Keywords: youth; Portugal; God; Pedrarias Dávila; Tierra Firme; caravels; ships; don Ferdinand; Alonso de la Puente; Deus

Chapter.  1600 words. 

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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