De Soto

Some critics argue that De Soto should be remembered historically as a cruel Spanish conqueror, who plundered and killed wherever he went.

Some other critics, however, say that De Soto was a tragic figure. That that he started out as a sailor and adventurer who was then tutored by previous captains, and even by the King of Spain, that the use of devious and brutal methods was normal for Spanish conquistadors going to the Americas. Furthermore, in many instances, De Soto’s men applied pressure on their captain to be brutal just when he was trying to get along better with particular native kings.

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Which of these two characterizations seems to be more accurate? Defend your answer.


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