Cortez commanding the burning of his ships, to prevent the mutiny and return of his soldiers, (painting)
Rothermel, P. F.
Appears in exhibition catalog as entry no. 15
The destruction of his fleet by Cortez is, perhaps, the most remarkable passage in the life of this remarkable man. History, indeed, affords examples of a similar expedient in emergencies somewhat similar; but none where the chances of success were so precarious, and defeat would be so disastrous. Had he failed it might well have seemed an act of madness. Yet it was the fruit of deliberate calculation. He had set fortune, fame, life itself, all upon the cast, and must abide the issue. There was no alternative in his mind but to succeed or perish. The measure he adopted greatly increased the chance of success. But to carry it into execution, in the face of an incensed and desperate soldiery, was an act of resolution that has few parallels in history.--Prescott's Conq. Mex. [P. 10.]
Vol. 1, No. 1. May. Published Monthly. Price a half dime. Record of the Western Art-Union, containing the Plan, List of Officers, and a Descriptive Catalogue of the Paintings, and other Works of Art, now on exhibition in the Gallery of the Western Art-Union. Cincinnati: 1849. Printed at the Daily Times Office.