Biography of Jofre García de Loaysa (¿-1526)

Military Spanish, captain general of the Spanish second beloved to the Moluccan Islands, born in Ciudad Real in date unknown, and died at sea, somewhere in the Pacific Ocean, in 1526. He/She crossed the Strait of Magellan and sailed for the Pacific Ocean, where he/she died on Board of the nao Victoria.

He was born in Ciudad Real in a large Spanish family. His brother Francisco García de Loaysa was provincial of the Dominicans, Bishop of Osma, and confessor of Carlos V. Jofre had a Knight's own education and entered the order of San Juan, which became Commander of Barbales. Become freyle, he/she held several important positions in the service of the Emperor and in 1524 he/she was chosen as captain general of the loved one that should go to the Moluccan Islands (where had returned Elcano after giving the world the first round) to establish the Spanish domination in these islands. García de Loaysa had great prestige and according to Fernández de Oviedo was "good Knight and person's experience in the war of the sea and the Earth". The Emperor appointed him Governor and most of the islands of the Maluco justice; a kind of viceroy of the oceanic territory.

He sailed from Sanlúcar de Barrameda on July 24, 1525 in front of 450 men embarked in six naos and a patache. The naos were Santa María de la Victoria (Captain, of 300 tons), Sancti Spiritus (of 200), the announced (of 170), San Gabriel (of 130), Santa María de el Parral (of 80), San Lesmes (of 86), and the patache Santiago (of 50 tons), taking as his Deputy and successor in the event of death to Juan Sebastián Elcano. Frey Jofre travelled on Captain and Elcano in Sancti Spiritus.

The Navy went to la Gomera, to take water, firewood and food, and then went to the Gulf of Guinea, from where was heading to Brazil. On 4 December they saw the Brazilian coast (between the cabo de San Agustín and the cabo Frio) from where singlaron to the South. The captain and the San Gabriel were lost in a storm. Elcano followed with the rest and January 5 reached the cabo Blanco, where it fell to the port of Santa Cruz. Continued to the South and they believed discover pass, penetrating into the same, but they had the wrong place. At the end of the eleven thousand virgins faded the nao Sancti Spiritus. The Navy returned to meet on January 26 at the entrance of the Strait, when the three announced, Santa María de el Parral and San Lesmes saw to get the victory, the San Gabriel and the patache. When you try to cross the Strait emerged another storm that caused major damage to the Santa María de la Victoria, so they decided to return to Santa Cruz to repair it. Once arranged, he/she returned to head the Straits, disappearing in the San Gabriel and the Anunciada. The Navy was thus reduced to the ship captain, the Parral, San Lesmes and patache Santiago, who managed to cross the Strait after 51 days. Went out to the Pacific Ocean from May 26, 1526, when undertook ocean cruise, during which the San Lesmes was lost, and the Santiago, which went to Mexico and the Santa María de el Parral, which followed directly to Oceania is despistaron. Left alone the Santa María la Victoria, which sailed more than 350 miles. Killed 35 sailors and sick from scurvy most of the remaining.

On 26 July the ship crossed the Equator and 30 of the same month reached the 4 degrees north of the equator, where the captain general Jofre García de Loaysa died. His corpse was wrapped in linen and placed on deck. After the recitation of some of our fathers and Hail Marys stood on a table, jumped on board and was launched into the water. The remote control then went to Juan Sebastián Elcano, who also died of scurvy a few days later; August 4, 1526. His corpse was thrown into the water in the same way. The nao Victoria thus reached its destination without any of the two captains General. The survivors arrived in Tidore, where erected a Fort to defend against the Portuguese.


FERNÁNDEZ DE OVIEDO, G. history General and native of the Indies. Madrid, Atlas, 1959, t. II. Lopez DE GOMARA, F. General crónica de Indias, historians primitive de Indias, Madrid, t. I, Atlas publishing, 1946.

MELON, TO. The early days of colonization. Madrid, Salvat, 1952.