Sunday, July 16, 2017

The search is on for the lost ships of Hernán Cortés, conqueror of Central America

The lost fleet is thought to lie at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico.

The Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés landed in Yucatan, Mexico, in 1519, eventually to conquer the Aztec empire of Central America. Now, 500 years later, Mexican researchers plan to find these lost shipwrecks and explore them to see what artefacts they might hold.

Popular accounts suggest that Cortés burnt his ships to prevent his men from attempting to flee. But Cortés himself claimed in a letter to the Spanish king Charles V that he sank, or 'scuttled', the fleet off the coast of Veracruz.

About a dozen ships are thought to remain at the sea bed in the Gulf of Mexico, where he left them. They have never been found or explored by archaeologists.

Staff writer from International Business Times