Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter IV >> Page 41

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History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
deliberately pacing the river bank, and permitting the negotiators to come and go at their pleasure, yet varied nothing from his first expressed resolution. He required them to surrender at discretion. He is even said to have set food and refreshments before them, while meditating a cruelty towards them like that which he had so inflexibly shown their comrades. Ribault, himself, crossed the river with several of his officers, without restraint, but without moving the stern decision of the Spaniard. He was respectfully received, conducted to the plain where the carcasses of the slaughtered party which preceeded him lay bare to the elements, was informed of the manner of their fate, and of those left in Fort Caro-line, and was still required to surrender at discretion.
It was in vain that these wretched men urged, that, as the two monarchs of their respective countries were not only at peace, but in alliance, they could not be treated as enemies. The answer was, "the catholic French are our friends and allies ; but with heretics I wage a war of extermination. In this I serve both monarchs. I came to Florida to establish the catholic faith. If you are satisfied to yield yourselves to my mercy, I will do with you as God shall inspire me. If not, choose your own course ; but do not hope from me either peace or friendship."
With this final answer Ribault returned to his comrades. It is somewhat surprising, that a commander who has been reputed so brave as himself, should have been con-tent to parley with such a monster, after so bold an avowal of his resolves, and after the unstinted revelation which he had made of the treatment of his former captives. It is still more a matter of surprise, that he should at length