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Hernando Cortez


Hernando Cortez (1485-1547) was the Spanish explorer who conquered Mexico and Cuba.  He was given a land grant by Christopher Columbus' son and later became major of Cuba.

"We are on a crusade.  We are marching as Christians into a land of infidels.  We seek not only to subdue boundless territory in the name of our Emperor Don Carols, but to win millions of unsalvaged souls to the True Faith." - February 10, 1519, "Stout Cortez: A Biography of the Spanish Conquest"

"It seems most credible that our Lord God has purposefully allowed these lands (Mexico) to be discovered, so that Your Majesties may be fruitful and deserving in His sight by causing these barbaric tribes to be enlightened and brought to the faith by Your hand." - July 10, 1519, "First Dispatch to Queen Juana"

"Cortez told them of their blindness and great vanity in worshipping many gods and making sacrifices of human blood to them, and in thinking that those images, being mute and soulless, made by the Indians with their own hands, were capable of doing good or harm.  He then told them of a single God, Creator of Heaven and earth and men, who the Christians worshiped and served, and whom all men should worship and serve." - 1519, Francisco Lopez de Gomara, "Cortez: The Life of the Conqueror by His Secretary"

"In short, after he had explained the Mysteries to them, and how the Son of God had suffered on the Cross, they accepted it and broke up their idols.  Thus it was that with great reverence, before a large concourse of Indians, and with many tears on the part of the Spaniards, a Cross was erected in the temple of Potonchan, and our men first, kneeling, kissed and worshiped it, and after them the Indians." - 1519, Francisco Lopez de Gomara, "Cortez: The Life of the Conqueror by His Secretary"