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and preparations were made for the campaign of the next spring. The Venetians having concluded a separate treaty with the Porte in March, 1573, the plans of the confederates were changed, and an expedition against Tunis was resolved upon. On the 24th of September, the ships sailed from Palermo, with twenty thousand men on board, among whom was Cervantes. The troops disembarked on the 8th and 9th of October, and Tunis was immediately abandoned to them. Don John returned to Spain, leaving a garrison in the city. After his departure, the Turks collected a large army to recapture the place. The ships which Don John despatched to aid the garrison were driven off the coast by storms, and he met with a similar fate when he went in person to relieve the place, being obliged to seek shelter in the ports of Sicily from the violence of the hurricanes. Meanwhile Tunis was taken, and Don John returned to Naples. Cervantes remained with his fellow soldiers in Sicily, till the summer of 1575, when he obtained permission to revisit his country. .
During the period of his service, Cervantes had visited the principal cities of Italy, Genoa, Lucca, Florence, Rome, Naples, Palermo, Messina, Ancona, Venice, Ferrara, Parma, Placentia, and Milan, --of which he has given beautiful and accurate descriptions in his works. Italy was long the emporium of science, art and literature, owing to the influence of the Greek scholars, who had taken shelter there after the fall of Constantinople. The Spaniards, who held dominion over many of its states, maintained a frequent communication with the natives. Some of them resorted to Rome to obtain benefices, some to study at the university of Bologna, founded expressly for Spaniards by Cardinal Albornoz, some to serve in the garrisons and armies, and some to obtain the patronage of the viceroys, in the paths of jurisprudence or public life. Many Italians, on the other hand, went to Spain to visit the metropolis of their government, to enter into the service of their sovereign, or to gain wealth by commerce.
The object of Cervantes in returning to Spain was to solicit a reward for his services, and on this occasion he received from Don John of Austria highly recommendatory letters to the king, requesting his majesty to confer on him the command of one of the companies raised in Spain to serve in Italy, as he was a man of courage, and distinguished for his merit and his services. The viceroy of Sicily also recommended him in high terms.
He now embarked, with his brother Rodrigo, who had also served in the campaigns above mentioned, and with many other military men, to return to Spain, but, on the 26th of September, 1575, the vessel fell in with a squadron of galliots, under the command of Arnaute Mami, an Algerine captain ; was attacked by three of the corsairs, and after obstinately maintaining an unequal combat, in which Cervantes distinguished himself, was obliged to surrender, and was carried into Algiers with all on board. It is probable that he gives the circumstances of this engagement in the fifth book of the Galatea, in which he describes an action between the ship which was carrying Timbrio from Italy to Spain, and this same Arnaute Mami, who commanded the squadron which captured him. In the division of the captives, Cervantes fell to the share of Dali Mami, captain of the vessel which had borne the principal share in the action. The Moor, on finding the letters of recommendation which Cervantes carried from Don John of Austria and the Duke of Sesa, supposed that he was a man of high rank and reputation, and that a large ransom could be obtained for him. He therefore treated his captive with great harshness, loading him with chains, keeping him under guard, and harassing him in various other ways, that the misery of his situation might induce him to urge his relations vehemently to effect his redemption. A further object of this mode of treating captives, which was common among the Barbary corsairs, was to induce them to renounce their religion ; and the temptation was considerable, as the renegades received offices and dignities which gave them a great superiority over the natives of the country. But Cervantes remained unshaken and unseduced, and labored continually to devise means of escape for himself and his fellow captives. At length he prevailed on a Moor in whom he had confidence, to undertake to conduct them by land to Oran, an enterprise which had been attempted by other captives without success. Having commenced their march, they were abandoned on the first day by the Moor, and obliged to return to Algiers and the horrors of their captivity. Cervantes in particular found the rigor of his treatment much increased.
About this time, when the year 1576 was considerably advanced, some of his fellow captives were ransomed, and he was enabled to write to his parents, describing the miserable situation of himself and his brother. His father immediately pledged all his property to obtain means for ransoming his sons, and the whole family were reduced to poverty. Cervantes, on receiving the sum thus raised, began to treat with Dali Mami for his liberation, but the hopes of the Moor had been so much excited, that he would not accept the amount offered. Cervantes, however, was able to ransom his brother Rodrigo in August, 1577, and directed him, on his arrival in Spain, to send from the coasts of Valencia, Majorca, or Ivica, an armed ship to a point designated in the neighborhood of Algiers, which might receive him and other Christian captives. To facilitate the success of his brother's commission, he procured letters from two knights of the order of St. Juan, then captives in Algiers, addressed to the governors of the province and islands just mentioned, intreating them to aid in the execution of the plan.
This project of escape had been in the mind of Cervantes for a long time, and he had taken the best measures in his power to secure its success. About three miles eastward from Algiers, and in the neighborhood of the sea, was a garden belonging to the alcayde Hassan, a Greek renegade. This garden was under the care of a slave named Juan, a native of Navarre, who had prepared a cave in the most private part of it with much care. In this cave a number of Christian captives concealed themselves under the direction of Cervantes, about the end of February, 1577. Others continued to join them, so that when Rodrigo Cervantes returned to Spain, the number of captives in the cave amounted to fourteen or fifteen, all men of respectability, several of them Spanish knights. It is difficult to conceive how Cervantes, without being missed from the house of his master, governed this subterranean republic, providing for the subsistence of all, and guarding against discovery. He was enabled to carry on his plan principally by the interest of the gardener in its success, as a means of recovering his own liberty, and by the aid of another captive, called the Gilder, who had renounced Christianity, and afterwards returned to it. The gardener watched to prevent any one from entering the garden, and the other procured provisions for the party. After all concerned had been collected, and the time for the arrival of the ship drew nigh, Cervantes left the house of his master, and took refuge in the cave about the 20th of September, 1577.
· A ship was equipped with great promptitude on the coast of Valencia or in Majorca, and put under the command of a certain Viana, who had been ransomed from captivity, and was brave, active, and acquainted with the coast of Barbary. He reached Algiers on the 28th of September, and in the night approached the part of the coast nearest the garden. While he was lying there, some Moors happened to pass by on the shore or in a fishing boat, and descrying the ship and the Christians through the darkness, began to call for aid so loudly that the crew of the ship were alarmed and put to sea. Renewing their attempt to approach the coast a short time afterwards, they were taken prisoners and the whole plan was frustrated."
Meanwhile Cervantes and his companions were consoling themselves, for the hardships of their confined situation, with the hope of liberty, but all their hopes were soon destroyed by the treachery of the Gilder, on whom they were dependent. This hypocrite resolved to renounce again the Christian religion, and on the last day of September, to ingratiate himself with Hassan, Bashaw of Algiers, disclosed to him his purpose and the hiding-place of the captives. The Bashaw was delighted with this intelligence, the captives being forfeited to him by the laws of Algiers, and immediately ordered the captain of his guard to take eight or ten mounted Turks, and twenty-four foot-soldiers with their swords and muskets, and some lancers, and to go under the guidance of the informer to the garden of the alcayde Hassan, and take possession of the Christians concealed in the cave, and of the gardener. The order was executed, and in the midst of the confusion occasioned by the entrance of the soldiers, Cervantes charged his companions to provide for their own safety by throwing the whole blame on him. While the soldiers were manacling the prisoners, Cervantes, calling the attention of all present, declared with a loud voice and a tranquil manner, that none of his comrades were to blame, for that he had persuaded them all to conceal themselves, and had arranged the whole enterprise. The Turks, surprised by so generous and high-minded a confession, made at the risk of death and torture, sent a horseman to inform Hassan of what Cervantes had said, and received orders to shut up all the other captives in his baths, but to bring Cervantes before him. He was accordingly conducted, manacled and on foot, to the presence of Hassan, suffering on the way all sorts of insults and injuries from his guard and the rabble
of Algiers. In his examination, the Bashaw had recourse alternately to artifice and threats to induce him to disclose bis accomplices. He was particularly desirous to nake him accuse an ecclesiastic named Oliver, then employed in redeeming captives in Algiers for the crown of Aragon. But Cervan-' tes steadily declared that he was the sole contriver of the plan, and neither directly nor indirectly compromised any other person. The Bashaw, wearied out by his constancy, contented himself with appropriating to his own use all the captives who had been seized Cervantes he shut up in his baths, loading him with chains, and purposing to chastise him. Nothing but avarice prevented him from putting his prisoners to death. He saved their lives with a view to their ransom. Some of them, however, he was obliged to restore to their former masters. If Cervantes was one of these, as Haedo relates, he remained but a short time in the hands of Dali Mami; since the Bashaw, either searing the attempts which his ingenuity might suggest, or hoping to procure a great ransom for him, purchased him from his master for five hundred escudos.
The Bashaw was covetous, suspicious and malignant, and withal so cruel and tyrannical, that his captives dreaded him as a fiend. Haedo gives a shocking account of his life and atrocities; and Cervantes, speaking of the labor imposed on the captives in his baths, who were about two thousand, uses these words: Although we suffered from hunger and nakedness at times, and in fact almost always, yet nothing distressed us so much as the unheard-of cruelties of our master towards the Christians. Every day he hanged one, impaled another, cut off the ears of a third, and for such trivial causes, or so entirely without reason, that the Turks admitted that it was merely from pleasure at the sight of suffering, and because nature made him for a butcher of human kind.
. In the baths of this monster, Cervantes remained chained and watched with great vigilance from the end of the year 1577, but struggling continually to shake off the yoke. He at length found means secretly to despatch a Moor with letters for Don Martin de Cordoba, general of Oran, and other persons of distinction, resident in that place, requesting them to send some spies or trusty persons, with whom he and three other gentlemen, confined in the baths of the Bashaw might make their escape. The Moor departed to execute șis com