Transcript Archive Item

The Petition of Francisco Nunez Melian - translation
Accession Number
An English translation of Dr. Blas González de Ribero’s ca.1630 petition to King Philip IV regarding his client Francisco Núñez Melián’s salvage of the sunken 1622 galleon Santa Margarita. The translation was made by Dr. Eugene Lyon in 2006.

Núñez Melián sent this petition to the crown, impelled by the claims of the owners of some of the silver bars he sent back to Spain from the salvage of Santa Margarita. Much of that correspondence is found in AGI Contratación 818. To represent him, Núñez Melián hired a well-known (and doubtless expensive) attorney, Dr. Blas González de Ribero, who was admitted to practice before the royal councils (including the Council of the Indies), and represented the Holy Office (the Inquisition).

In working up his petition, Gonzáles had reference to a number of classical and early modern sources, which he cited in lengthy marginal notes, often in Latin. This translation does not address those notes.

The petition gives a good description of the bronze bell used by the salvor, and of the techniques used in the salvage.