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DIAZ DE PINEDA, Gonzalo (deathdapena'dah), Spanish soldier, born in Torrelavega early in the 16th century; died in Peru in 1.545. He went to Peru with Francisco Pizarro on' his last expedition (1581), and in 1534 accompanied Sebastian Velalcazar in the conquest of what was afterward called the "New Kingdom of Granada." In 1535 he was sent by Velalcazar to explore the River Magdalena, the upper course of which the expedition had reached, down to its mouth, and acquire information about the adjacent country. He entered the territory of the Indians called Quijos and Canelos, which he discovered in 1586, and his glowing description of the richness of these countries gave rise, years later, to the unfortunate expedition of Gonzalo Pizarro to Canelos and Amazonas. In 1539 Diaz was appointed governor of Quito, and, by order of the judge, Lorenzo AIdana, imprisoned and sent to Lima Diego Sandoval and Cristobal Daza, friends and followers of Velalcazar, who was in a revolt against Pizarro. In the beginning of 1540 he marched with Gonzalo Pizarro in his famous expedition for the conquest of the country of the Canelos, visited formerly by Diaz, and for the exploration of the country east of the Andes. Diaz rendered valuable services to Pizarro in this unfortunate expedition by his practical knowledge of the Indian countries, as well as by his endurance of fatigues and hardships. Diaz, with only a handful of followers, went in search of the expedition of Francisco Orellana, who, after the provisions had given out, had been sent down the River Napo in search of supplies in the beginning of 1541, but, finding only a wilderness, had descended the Amazon, which he discovered to its mouth. Seeing the fruitlessness of his errand, Diaz returned in search of Pizarro, being continually harassed by the Indians, and was the principal means of extricating the half famished expedition from the wilderness and bringing it, although with heavy losses, to Peru. In 1544, when Gonzalo Pizarro rose in rebellion against Nui'iez de Vela, Diaz de Pineda, at that time in Lima, offered his services to the viceroy, and advised him to send an expedition to the interior. the viceroy sent him to Jauja at the head of a company of infantry and a force of cavalry, with his nephew, Vela Nunez, the object being to prevent the junction of a force from Huanuco, under command of Pedro Puelles, with Pizarro's army in Cuzco. But scarcely had Diaz Pinedas force entered the Andes mountains when he (being Puelles's son-in-law) pretended that he was forced by his officers to pronounce for Pizarro, and joined Puelles, young Vela Nutiez barely escaping. Oonzalo Pizarro sent Dias Pineda in 1545, with Geronimo de Villegas, to Trujillo and Piura to recruit soldiers. Meanwhile the viceroy had been set at liberty by one of the judges, and, landing at Tumbez, gathered forces to march against Diaz Pineda, at that time in Piura, who had surprised trod killed in Bracamoros Captain Heredia, of the government forces. Diaz retreated from Piura, but surprised a part of the advancing forces at Chachayoyas and defeated them. On receipt of this news, the viceroy attacked with the remainder of his forces upon Diaz and surprised him at Colliquen. Seeing his troops dispersed, Diaz sought refuge with Hernando de Alvarado, where he perished, being forced by hunger to eat poisonous plants. Garcilaso de la Vega, in his history of the conquest, re lares that Indians killed the two officers, together with Geronimo Villegas.
Editor's Note: "I wanted to correct
a mistake you have made about Gonzalo Díaz de Pineda (it sounds: "deas the
pe'nadah"). He was not born in Torrelavega (Cantabria). He was born in Infiesto
(Asturias). This places are one hundred miles of distance. Another mistake is
that the Pizarro's last expedition to th Peru was not in 1581. It was in 1531.
The last mistake I have noticed is that the name "Velalcazar" is wrong writed.
The right transcription is "Belalcazar" -- Alejandro Cantora Álvarez
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