Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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0RDAZ, Diego de, Spanish adventurer, born in Castro Verde in 11485: died in Paria, Venezuela, in 1533. He came in his youth to South America, served under Diego Velasquez in Cuba, joined Cortes in 1518 with a ship, and took an active part in the conquest of New Spain, deciding by a timely movement the success of the battle of Ceutla, 25 March, 1519. He was the first European to ascend Popocatepetl, which feat greatly impressed the Indians, and for which he was permitted by a decree of Charles V., dated 22 October, 1523, to add to his escutcheon a burning volcano. He afterward explored the province of Oaxaca and sailed up the river Coatzaeoa, lco. He was sent in 1521 to Spain to present the emi, eror with a narrative of Cortes's discovery, mid again in 1522 to obtain for Cortes the government of New Spai, , , which was granted by decree of 15 October With this good news Ordaz returned to Mexico, but after some years he went again to Spain, where he obtained a grant of the country between Cape Vela and the Bay of Venezuela. After forming an expedition he left San Lucar in March, 1531, and sailed along the coast of South America, discovering Orinoco river, which he explored for nearly 200 miles and which he was the first to ascend. On his way to Spain to give an account of his discovery he touched at Paria, where he died suddenly.
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