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DEATH OF SOBERANIS.
of Mexico was removed from office, and summoned before that tribunal. Martin de Ursúa y Arizmendi, the governor elect, was appointed to replace Soberanis, and at once made preparations to avail himself of the opportunity to carry out his favorite project— the conquest of the Itzas.
Meanwhile, however, Soberanis, acquitted in Mexico, was restored to his government, and from this time to his death on September 25, 1699,2 made all possible opposition to the schemes of his successor, notwithstanding royal orders to the contrary. Ursúa's second term lasted from 1699 to the end of 1703, when he was deposed by the viceroy of Mexico, on a charge of implication in the murder of an alcalde of Valladolid.43 Ursúa went to Spain, where he not only justified his conduct, but obtained new distinctions, and was reinstated on June 6, 1706, holding office till the 15th of September 1708, when he was promoted to the presidency of Manila.“
The services that he rendered in the expedition. against the Itzas in 1697, and which have already been related, were probably the main reason for his preferment, for during that campaign he displayed all the qualities of a cautious and capable leader.46
41 An oidor, Francisco Zaraza, sent to Mérida in December 1694 to investigate the matter, returned to Mexico in July 1695, without pronouncing sentence, the bishop having died in February 1695. Robles, Diario, ii. 159– 60, 167, 170, 172.
42 Of yellow fever, the first time the disease appeared in the country. Lara, Apuntes Históricos, followed by Castillo, Dice. Hist. Yuc., 69.
43 A visitador, Carlos Bermudez, was sent from Mexico and later a governor ad interim appointed, Alvaro de Rivaguda, who punished several of the guilty persons, but failed to discover any evidence of the complicity of Ursúa. Robles, Diario, 1st ser., ii. 468, 477, 484; Ancona, Hist. Yuc., ii. 316–25.
44 The titles of count de Lizarraga Vengoa, conqueror, perpetual governor, and captain-general of the Itza provinces, were among others given him. Elorza y Rada, Nobil., 211.
45 See Hist. Cent. Amer., ii. 681 et seq., this series.
45 In addition to the authorities already quoted, the reader is referred to Cogollvdo, Hist. Yuc., 220, 385-6, 452-752, passim; Villagutierre, Hist. Cong. Itza, 326-40, 410-17, 535-41; Guijo, Diario in Doc. Hist. Mex., 1st ser., i. 223-4, 548; Robles, Diario, i. 81, 140, 312, 343, 355, 358, 375, 399, 452, ii. 155, 183; Calle, Mem. y Not., 84-5, 87-8; Ordenes de la Corona, MS., iii. 64; Barbachano, Mem. Camp., 2-8; Castillo, Dicc. Hist. Yuc., 54, 59-61, 63, 69, 72, 93, 294–5; Juarros, Guat., i. 33; Stephens, Yuc., ii. 194; Dicc. Univ., vi. 785-6; viii. 494, x. 763–6.
FIVE MORE VICEROYS.
COUNT DE BAÑOS, THE TWENTY-THIRD VICEROY-A NEW ORDER OF THINGSINDIAN REVOLT AT TEHUANTEPEC-AN ARBITRARY RULER-CHARACTER OF THE MAN-HE IS REPLACED BY ARCHBISHOP OSORIO-THE PRELATE'S BRIEF BUT BENEFICENT GOVERNMENT-A NATIVE OF MEXICO MADE ARCHBISHOP-ARRIVAL OF MARQUIS MANCERA-HIS EFFICIENT RULE— CALIFORNIA EXPLORATIONS-THE CATHEDRAL OF MEXICO-ITS DEDICATION-MANCERA'S WISE POLICY-ERUPTION OF POPOCATEPETL AND OTHER CALAMITIES-VERAGUAS, DESCENDANT OF COLUMBUS, AS VICEROY-HIS UNTIMELY DEATH-ARCHBISHOP RIBERA SUCCEEDS - HIS CHARACTER AND GOOD GOVERNMENT-HE DECLINES NEW HONORSHIS RETIREMENT TO SPAIN, AND DEATH.
LATE in July 1660 the twenty-third viceroy of New Spain, Juan de Leiva y de la Cerda, marqués de Leiva y de Ladrada, conde de Baños,' arrived at Vera Cruz. He entered Mexico on the 16th of September, and on the same day took charge of the government. One of his first acts was the imprisonment of the castellan of the fortress of San Juan de Ulúa, without any apparent reason, and such arbitrary measures were several times repeated during his administration which was in strong contrast with that of his predecessor. During the last months of Alburquerque's reign, news was received in Mexico that the Indians of the district of Tehuantepec were in revolt and had killed the alcalde mayor. A small force sent against them was defeated, and preparations were made to assemble a larger expedition. But before this was ready it was
'Guijo calls him Juan de la Cueva Leiva y Labrada. Diario, 444, 447. 2 The cause of the outbreak was the usual extortions practised upon the natives, many of them being driven to suicide. Robles, Vida, 151-3.
learned that the troubles had been allayed by the intercession of the bishop of Oajaca, Alonso de Cuevas Dávalos.s
The count was a man utterly unfitted for the position, and soon made himself extremely unpopular among his subjects. Vain, arrogant, and selfish, he is mentioned as one of the worst rulers that was ever placed at the head of affairs. As an instance of his vanity it may be mentioned that in the second year after his arrival he used his influence to change the route of the procession of corpus christi in such a manner that it would pass by the viceregal palace. In the following year, on repeating this request, he met with energetic opposition from the new archbishop, Diego Osorio de Escobar y Llamas, who under severe ecclesiastical penalties forbade any deviation from the rule observed since the early days of Spanish dominion.
This was more than the overbearing viceroy could endure; and considering himself moreover deeply injured by the general sympathy displayed by the public, and the religious corporations, at the sudden death of the commander of San Juan de Ulúa, who had been imprisoned by his order, he resolved on revenge.
Zamacois, Hist. Méj., v., erroneously gives the date as 1661; Mayer says 1661 and 1662, Mex. Aztec, i. 208; Rivera, Hist. Jalapa, i. 95, 1664. Domenech, reversing the order, says the troubles arose in consequence of decrees issued by Dávalos, Hist. Mex., i. 275-6. A letter of the king dated October 2, 1662, thanks the bishop for his services in flattering terms and promises him the royal favor. Robles, Vida, 164-5.
*Among other instances of his incapacity it may be mentioned that when news was received of the occupation of Cuba by the English the viceroy attempted to organize an expedition, but except enlisting a number of recruits and appointing two of his sons as officers, it is not recorded that he accomplished anything.
Born in Coruña in Galicia, and in 1656 made bishop of Puebla after holding several important offices in Spain. Lorenzana, in Concilios Prov., 1555–65, 220-1, 269. In 1663 he was promoted to the see of Mexico. Lorenzana, in Id., 269-70, gives 1666 as the year, but mentions the correct date on p. 221. His mistake has been copied by Ribera, Gobernantes, i. 213.
The election of Osorio had frustrated the hopes of the bishop of Nicaragua, Juan de la Torre, then in Mexico, who was one of the viceroy's favor ites. Torre even later wrote to Spain, calumniating the character of the archbishop and of the oidores, on the other hand extolling that of his patron. By accident the affair became known, and the audiencia peremptorily ordered Torre to depart for his bishopric. Guijo, Diario, 506–7.
Failing in his efforts to undermine the influence of the archbishop, who again in 1664 denied the right of the count to change the route of the corpus christi procession, he next thought of exiling him under some pretext, which it would not be difficult to find. Meanwhile he caused all letters from Spain addressed to Osorio to be destroyed. On the 27th of June his preparations were concluded, the audiencia had already been informed, and on the following day the plan was to be executed. But at this moment an incident occurred which overthrew his projects. A vessel from Spain ran ashore near the old town of Vera Cruz. The crew and mails were saved, and even the vigilance of the spies kept by the viceroy could not prevent the agents of Osorio from securing and delivering in safety the archbishop's correspondence. The latter with surprise observed that among the letters was one, addressed to him, as viceroy of Mexico. Immediately the news spread, carrying with it no less joy than astonishment to all save the count, for he had withheld and burned six previous despatches of the same character.8
On the following day Osorio sent the official information to the viceroy and the oidores, summoning the latter to the archiepiscopal palace. Showing them two royal cédulas, which referred to him as viceroy and captain-general, he asked their opinion, whether these documents were sufficient authority for him to assume the government. The audiencia returned to the palace, there to discuss the question in presence of the count. The latter denied the right of Osorio, unless a cédula expressing the formal appointment be exhibited. The doubts were soon solved, for in the box containing the despatches another letter was
For having attempted this, the viceroy was afterward fined 12,000
When the bishop learned this, he demanded their delivery under severe penalties. An official of the government, who had witnessed the destruction of the documents, among which there had been one from the inquisition in Spain, was imprisoned by the holy office of Mexico for having concealed this fact. Guijo, Diario, 529-30.
found directing the audiencia to take charge in case Osorio should have died or resigned. Immediately the oidores returned and informed the archbishop that his authority was recognized, and two hours later he took the oath and was formally installed. Soon afterward, when again in his palace, the ex-viceroy paid him a visit, as prescribed by etiquette, and left him his guard. No sooner did the people see the count alone, than they began to shout, scoff, and throw stones at him and his companions, obliging them to hasten as quickly as possible to the viceregal palace.
Great were the demonstrations of joy at Osorio's appointment. The streets were crowded; there were festivities and illuminations, and the following day a te deum was sung in the cathedral. At the same time, in consequence of his resignation of the archbishopric, the bishop of Oajaca, Alonso de Cuevas Dávalos, had been appointed as successor. At the request of the chapter and the new prelate Osorio continued, however, to govern the see till November, when Cuevas arrived. Although the rule of the new viceroy lasted but a few months, many changes were made for the better. The people began to breathe more freely. Persons exiled by Baños, and others, who from fear had left the town, returned; justice was administered with rigor, but with impartiality; the count of Santiago Calimaya, notwithstanding his high rank, and Pedro de Leiva, son of the ex-viceroy, were both
This according to Guijo. Nevertheless many later writers represent Baños as a popular ruler. Alegre says the viceroy visited and supported the hospitals of the society, and calls him 'un virey de los mas ejemplares y justos.' Hist. Comp. Jesus, ii. 425-6. Similar though less enthusiastic praise is bestowed on him by Vetancurt, Trat. Mex., 15, Lorenzana, Hist. N. Esp., 25, Cavo, Tres Siglos, ii. 47, and others. Similar manifestations, as whistling and hissing, were repeated months afterward, when the count was present at some bull-fights arranged in honor of viceroy Mancera. In October 1664 his residencia was begun, but not concluded till 1666. Guijo, Diario, 557; Robles, Diario, i. 15. The entire property of the ex-viceroy was attached, notwithstanding royal orders to permit his return to Spain, and he was placed under bonds for 40,000 pesos. Ordenes de la Corona, MS., i. 38; Reales Cédulas, MS., ii. 148–9. In 1666 Baños returned to Spain, where after the death of his wife he entered the order of the barefooted Carmelites. Robles, Diario, i. 17-18, 223, 239.