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there from Panama or Porto Bello, and hereupon three were brought before him, who pretended to be very expert in all the avenues of those parts. He asked them if they would be his guides, and show him the securest ways and passages to Panama, which, if they performed, he promised them equal shares in all they should pillage and rob in that exposition, and that afterwards he would set them at liberty, by transporting them to Jamaica. These propositions pleased the Banditti very well, and they readily accepted his proffers, promising to serve him very faithfully in all he should desire, especially one of these three, who was the greatest rogue, thief and assassin among them, and who had deserved for his crimes rather to be broken alive upon the wheel than punished with serving in a garrison. This wicked fellow had a great ascendancy over the other two banditti, and could domineer and command over them as he pleased, they not daring to refuse obedience to his orders.
THE MARCH ACROSS THE ISTHMUS
HEREUPON Capt. Morgan commanded four ships and one boat to be equipped and provided with all things necessary, to go and take the castle of Chagre, seated upon a river of that name. Neither would he go himself with his whole feet, fearing less the Spaniards should be jealous of his farther designs upon Panama. In these vessels he caused to embark four hundred men, who went to put in execution the orders of their chief commander Capt. Morgan, while he himself remained behind in the Island of St. Catherine, with the rest of the fleet, expecting to hear the success of their arms.
Capt. Morgan sending these four ships and a boat to the river of Chagre, chose for ViceAdmiral thereof a certain person named Capt. Brodley. This man had been a long time in those quarters and committed many robberies upon the Spaniards when Mansvelt took the
Isle of St. Catherine. He, being therefore well acquainted with those coasts, was thought a fit person for this exploit, his action likewise having rendered him famous among the Pirates, and their enemies the Spaniards. Capt. Brodley being chosen chief of these forces, in three days after he departed from the presence of Captain Morgan, arrived within sight of the said castle of Chagre, which by the English is called St. Lawrence. This castle is built upon a high mountain, at the entry of the river, and surrounded on all sides with strong palisades or wooden walls, being very well terrepleined, and filled with earth, which renders them as secure as the best walls made of stone or brick. The top of this mountain is in a manner divided into two parts, between which lies a ditch of the depth of thirty foot. The castle itself has but one entry, and that by a drawbridge which passes over the ditch aforementioned. On the land side it has four bastions, that on the sea containing only two more. That part thereof that looks towards the south is totally inaccessible and impossible to be climbed, through the infinite asperity of the mountain.
untain. The north side 1 English rendition of the Spanish, “San Lorenzo." The remains of the castle constitute one of the interesting points in the neighborhood of Panama.