페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

spread through the army, and succeeded in fighting their way up to the gate, which was eagerly thrown open to receive them.

The garrison, roused to new spirit by this unlooked-for rein. forcement, was enabled to make a more vigorous resistance. The Moors, however, who knew there was a great scarcity of water in the castle, exulted in the idea that this additional number of warriors would soon exhaust the cisterns, and compel a surrender. Pulgar, hearing of this hope, caused a bucket of water to be lowered from the battlements, and threw a silver cup in bravado to the Moors.

The garrison, in truth, suffered intensely from thirst, while, to tantalize them in their sufferings, they beheld limpid streams winding in abundance through the green plain below them. They began to fear that all succor would arrive too late, when one day they beheld a little squadron of ressels far at sea, but standing towards the shore. There was some doubt at first whether it might not be a hostile armament from Africa ; but as it approached, they descried, to their great joy, the banner of Castile.

It was a reinforcement, brought in all haste by the governor of the fortress, Don Francisco Ramirez. The squadron anchored at a steep rocky island, which rises from the very margin of the smooth sandy beach, directly in front of the rock of Salobreña, and stretches out into the sea. On this island Ramirez landed nis

men, and was as strongly posted as if in a fortress. His force was too scanty to attempt a battle, but he assisted to harass and distract the besiegers. Whenever king Boabdil made an attack apon the fortress, his camp was assailed on one side by the troops of Ramirez, who landed from their island, and on another by those of Don Francisco Enriquez, who swept down from their rock; while Hernan del Pulgar kept up a brave defence, from every tower and battlement of the castle.

The attention of the Moorish king was diverted, also, for a

RETREAT OF BOABDIL.

475

time, by an ineffectual attempt to relieve the little port of Adra, which had recently declared in his favor, but which had been recaptured for the Christians by Cid Hiaya and his son Alnayar. Thus the unlucky Boabdil, bewildered on every hand, lost all the advantage that he had gained by his rapid march from Granada. While he was yet besieging the obstinate citadel, tidings were brought him that king Ferdinand was in full march, with a powerful host, to its assistance. There was no time for farther delay: he made a furious attack with all his forces upon the castle, but was again repulsed by Pulgar and his coadjutors; whcu, abandoning the siege in despair, he retreated with bis army, lest king Ferdinand should get between him and his capital. On his way back to Granada, however, he in some sort consoled himself for his late disappointment, by overrunning a part of the territories and possessions lately assigned to his uncle El Zagal, and to Cid Hiaya. He defeated their alcaydes, destroyed several of their fortresses, burnt their villages, and, leaving the country hehind him reeking and smoking with his vengeance, returned with considerable booty, to repose himself within the walls of tl:c Alhambra.

* Palgar, Cron. p. 8, a. 131. Cura de los Palacios, cap. 97.

CHAPTER LXXXIX.

How King Ferdinand treated the people of Guadix—and now Ei Zagel

finished his regal career.

SCARCELY had Boabdil ensconced himself in his capital, when king Ferdinand, at the head of seven thousand horse and twenty thousand foot, again appeared in the vega. He had set out in all haste from Cordova, to the relief of Salobreña; but, hearing on his march that the siege was raised, he turned to make a second ravage round the walls of devoted Granada. His present forage lasted fifteen days, in the course of which almost every thing that had escaped his former desolating visit was destroyed, and scarce a green thing or a living animal was left on the face of the land. The Moors sallied frequently, and fought desperately, in defence of their fields; but the work of destruction was accomplishedand Granada, once the queen of gardens, was left surrounded by a desert.

Ferdinand next hastened to crush a conspiracy in the cities of Guadix, Baza, and Almeria. These recently conquered places had entered into secret correspondence with Boabdil, inviting him to march to their gates, promising to rise upon the Christian garrisons, seize upon the citadels, and surrender them into his power.

The

marques of Villena had received notice of the conspiracy, and suddenly thrown himself, with a large force, into

TREATMENT OF THE GUADIXANS.

477

He then per

Guadix. Under pretence of a review of the inhabitants, he made them sally forth into the fields before the city. When the whole Moorish population capable of bearing arms was thus without the walls, he ordered the gates to be closed. mitted them to enter, two by two and three by three, and take forth their wives, children, and effects. The houseless Moors were fain to make themselves temporary hovels, in the gardens and orchards about the city; they were clamorous in their complaints at being thus excluded from their homes, but were told they must wait with patience until the charges against them could be investigated, and the pleasure of the king be known.*

When Ferdinand arrived at Guadix, he found the unhappy Moors in their cabins among the orchards. They complained bitterly of the deception practised upon them, and implored permission to return into the city, and live peaceably in their dwellings, as had been promised them in their articles of capitulation.

King Ferdinand listened graciously to their complaints : “My friends," said he in reply, “ I have been informed that there has been a conspiracy among you to kill my alcayde and garrison, and to take part with my enemy, the king of Granada. I shall make a thorough investigation of this conspiracy. Those among you who shall be proved innocent shall be restored to their dwellings, but the guilty shall incur the penalty of their offences. As I wish however to proceed with mercy as well as justice, I now give you your choice, either to depart at once without further question, going wherever you please, and taking with you your families and effects, under an assurance of safety; or to de liver up those who are guilty, not one of whom, I give you my royal word, shall escape punishment."

When the people of Guadix heard these words, they com

* Zurita, lib. c. 85. Cura de los Palacios, c. 97.

[ocr errors]

muned among themselves; and as most of them (says the worthy Agapida) were either culpable or feared to be considered so, they accepted the alternative, and departed sorrowfully, they and their wives and their little ones. Thus," in the words of that excel. lent and cotemporary historian, Andres Bernaldez, commonly called the curate of Los Palacios—“ thus did the king deliver Guadix from the hands of the enemies of our holy faith, after seven hundred and seventy years that it had been in their posses. sion, ever since the time of Roderick the Goth; and this was one of the mysteries of our Lord, who would not consent that the city should remain longer in the power of the Moors :"-a pions and sage remark, which is quoted with peculiar approbation by the worthy Agapida.

King Ferdinand offered similar alternatives to the Moors of Baza, Almeria, and other cities accused of participation in this conspiracy; who generally preferred to abandon their homes rather than incur the risk of an investigation. Most of them relinquished Spain, as a country where they could no longer live in security and independence, and departed with their families for Africa; such as remained were suffered to live in villages and hamlets, and other unwalled places.*

While Ferdinand was thus occupied at Guadix, dispensing justice and mercy, and receiving cities in exchange, the old monarch Muley Abdallah, surnamed El Zagal, appeared before him. He was haggard with care, and almost crazed with passion. He had found his little territory of Andarax, and his two thousand subjects, as difficult to govern as had been the distracted kingdom of Granada. The charm, which had bound the Moors to him, was broken when he appeared in arms under the banner of Ferdinand. He had returned from his inglorious campaign with

* Garibay, lib. 13, cap. 39. Pulgar, part 3, ca) 182.

« 이전계속 »