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commanded them to send speedily two persons to seek and procure the sum he demanded, which amounted to one hundred pieces of eight. To this effect, two men were sent to the President of Panama, who gave him an account of all these tragedies. The President having now a body of men in readiness, set forth immediately towards Porto Bello to encounter the Pirates before their retreat. But these people, hearing of his coming, instead of flying away, went out to meet him at a narrow passage through which of necessity he must pass. Here they placed an hundred men very well armed; who at the first encounter, put to flight a good party of those of Panama. This accident obliged the President to retire for that time, as not being yet in a posture of strength to proceed any farther. Presently after this encounter he sent a message to Capt. Morgan to tell him: That in case he departed not suddenly with all his forces from Porto Bello, he ought to expect no quarter for himself nor his companions when he should take them, as he hoped soon to do. Captain Morgan who feared not his threats, knowing he had a secure retreat in his ships which were near at hand, made him answer: He would not deliver the castles, before he had received the contribution-money he had demanded. Which in case it were not paid down he would certainly burn the whole city, and then leave it; demolishing beforehand the castles, and killing the prisoners.

The Governor of Panama perceived by this answer that no means would serve to mollify the hearts of the Pirates, nor reduce them to reason. Hereupon he determined to leave them; as also those of the city, whom he came to relieve, involved in the difficulties of making the best agreement with the enemies. Thus, in a few days more, the miserable citizens gathered the contribution wherein they were fined, and brought the entire sum of one hundred thousand pieces of eight to the Pirates, for a ransom of the cruel captivity they were fallen into. But the President of Panama, by these transactions, was brought into an extreme admiration, considering that four hundred men had been able to take such a great city, with so many strong castles; especially seeing that they had no pieces of cannon, nor other great guns, wherewith to raise batteries against them. And what was more, knowing that the citizens of Porto Bello had always great repute of being good soldiers themselves, and who had never wanted courage in their own defence. This astonishment was so great, that it occasioned him, for to be satisfied herein, to send a messenger to Capt. Morgan, desiring him to send him some small pattern of those arms wherewith he had taken with such violence so great a city. Capt. Morgan received this messenger very kindly, and treated him with civility. Which being done, he gave him a pistol and a few small bullets of lead, to carry back to the President, his master, telling him withal: He desired him to accept that slender pattern of the arms wherewith he had taken Porto Bello, and keep them for a twelvemonth after which time he promised to come to Panama and fetch them away. The Governor of Panama returned the present very soon to Capt. Morgan giving him thanks for the favor of lending him such weapons as he needed not, withal sent him a ring of gold with his message: That he desired him not to give himself the labour of coming to Panama as he had done to Porto Bello; for he did certify to him, he should not speed so well here as he had done there.

After these transactions, Capt. Morgan (having provided his fleet with all necessaries, and taken with him the best guns of the castles, nailing the rest which he could not carry away) set sail from Porto Bello with all his ships. With these he arrived in few days at the Island of Cuba, where he sought out a place wherein with all quiet and repose he might make the dividend of the spoil they had got. They found in ready money two hundred and fifty thousand pieces of eight, besides all other merchandizes, as cloth, linen, silks, and other goods. With this rich booty they sailed again thence to their common place of rendezvous, Jamaica. Being arrived, they passed here some time in all sorts of vices and debauchery, according to their common manner of doing, spending with huge prodigality what others had gained with no small labour and toil.

1 The coin “pieces of eight " had the value of eight Spanish reals. Equivalent to 40 cents gold.

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