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Map of the Voyage of Córdoba (1517)


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Three Spanish caravels led by Francisco Fernandez de Córdoba left Santiago de Cuba on February 8, 1517, sailed along the north coast of Cuba, and crossed to Yucatán.  This was the first Spanish expedition to reach the mainland of Mexico, and the firsthand account of the voyage by a crew member, Bernal Díaz de Castillo,  is of primary interest.

After brief stops at Cabo Catoche, Campeche, and Champotón, the Spaniards suffered major losses in battles with coastal Mayans, and had to return to Cuba via the south coast of Florida.

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[Fig.1: Course of the voyage of Córdoba (Athena Review).]


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