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7 . a.
These three subsequent voyages were made to explore and exploit the riches and resources of the Native Americans. Columbus had been granted authority by the Spanish Monarchy to claim land for Spain, begin a settlement, trade for valuable goods or gold, and explore; he was also made governor of all the lands which he found. Columbus proved to be a savage and brutal governor. He enslaved and stole from the natives, at one point threatening to cut off the hands of any native who failed to give him gold.