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CORTÉS, Hernán (1485-1547), and GUZMÁN, Nuño de (c. 1485-1558). Letter signed ("Fernando Cortes" with double rubric) to García de Llerena in Santiesteban del Puerto, Tenochtitlán, 12 June 1527.
PROPERTY FROM THE ROGER D. JUDD COLLECTION OF HISTORICAL LETTERS, DOCUMENTS & MANUSCRIPTS
CORTÉS, Hernán (1485-1547), and GUZMÁN, Nuño de (c. 1485-1558). Letter signed ("Fernando Cortes" with double rubric) to García de Llerena in Santiesteban del Puerto, Tenochtitlán, 12 June 1527.

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CORTÉS, Hernán (1485-1547), and GUZMÁN, Nuño de (c. 1485-1558). Letter signed ("Fernando Cortes" with double rubric) to García de Llerena in Santiesteban del Puerto, Tenochtitlán, 12 June 1527.

In Spanish. One page, 192 x 188mm, single sheet; addressed on verso to García de Llerena. Matted and framed with engraved portrait of Cortés.

Cortés, conqueror of Mexico, advises his personal envoy and servant García de Llerena to cooperate with Nuño de Guzmán. The royal appointment in 1525 of Nuño de Guzmán as governor of the autonomous territory of Pánuco on the Gulf Coast of northeastern Mexico threatened Cortés’ power base in the area, so he sent his servant García de Llerena to Santiesteban del Puerto, the capital of the territory of Pánuco (modern-day Pánuco in the state of Veracruz, Mexico) to look after his personal interests and report back. Guzmán did not reach Santiesteban to take up his appointment until May 1527 because of illness. Soon after Guzmán arrived, Cortés advised García de Llerena to work with him to the extent possible, since his royal mandate and motives were still not clear: “Sr. Nuño de Guzmán is a very noble person who is always eager to serve His Majesty, never giving credit to rumors nor slander, and he shall have you as my servant to favor you with justice in all that you request … be sure you are very careful to please Sr. Nuño de Guzmán, because if you do not, I will be very angry.” Relations between the two conquistadors quickly deteriorated as Guzmán’s power grew to rival that of Cortés. Over the next few years, Guzmán would also serve as governor of Nueva Galicia in central Mexico and President of the first Real Audencia (high court) in Mexico. But power corrupted Guzmán: in 1537 he was tried for treason, abuse of power, and the inhumane treatment of indigenous inhabitants of territories under his control, and he was sent back to Spain in chains. See D.E. Chipman, Nuño de Guzmán and the Province of Panuco in New Spain, 1518-1533 (Glendale, Calif., 1967), pp. 143-154; F.M. Tamayo, Nuño de Guzmán (Mexico City, 1992), pp. 43-47.

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