History of the Conquest of Mexico by William H Prescott (d. 1859)
Much have I travell’d in the realms of gold,And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;Round many western islands have I beenWhich bards in fealty to Apollo hold.Oft of one wide expanse had I been toldThat deep-brow’d Homer ruled as his demesne;Yet never did I breathe its pure sereneTill I heard Chapman speak out loud and bold.Then felt I like some watcher of the skiesWhen a new planet swims into his ken;Or like stout Cortez, when with eagle eyesHe star’d at the Pacific – and all his menLook’d at each other with a wild surmise -Silent, upon a peak in Darien. – Keats.Prescott’s classic and beautifully written work describes what Cortez and his men went on to do, and how it was that they came to destroy the empire of the Aztecs –
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