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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. IV. by Robert Kerr

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natives are manufacturers of silks and various other stuffs, and hatters,
and soap-boilers. Two trades only could never be acquired by them, which
is the art of glass blowing, and that of the apothecary; but this is not
owing to any defect of natural genius, as there are among them surgeons,
herbalists, jugglers, makers of puppets, and of violins. They cultivated
the ground before our arrival; and now they rear stock, break in bullocks
to the plough, sow, reap, manure, and make bread and biscuit. They have
planted their lands with the various fruits of old Spain, such as quince,
apple, and pear trees, which they hold in high estimation; but cut down
the unwholesome peach trees and the overshading plantains. From us they
have learnt laws and justice; and they every year elect their own alcaldes,
regidors, notaries, alguazils, fiscals, and major-domos[2]. They have
their _cabildos_, or common councils, and bailiffs, which meet twice
a-week, judging, sentencing, and punishing for smaller offences; but for
murder and higher crimes, they must have recourse to the Spanish governors
in places where there are no courts of royal audience. In Tlascala,
Tezcuco, Cholula, Guaxocinco, Tepeaca, and other large cities, gilt maces
are borne before the native magistrates when they go to hold their
cabildos, as is done before our viceroys; and they distribute justice with
much zeal and impartiality, being anxious to acquire a thorough knowledge
of our laws. All the caciques are rich, and ride on horses handsomely
caparisoned, attended by pages. In some townships likewise, they exercise
with the lance on horseback, running at the ring; and they have bull
feasts, especially on the days of Corpus Christi, St John, St James, the
Assumption, or the patron or patroness saint of the town. Many of them are
excellent horsemen, and the natives especially of Chiapa de los Indios,
will face the fiercest bull. The caciques breed horses, and use them and
mules for conveying their various commodities for sale, such as maize,
wood or lime; and many of the natives gain their living by following the
occupation of carriers.

By means of our illustrious services, our mother-country obtains gold,
silver, precious stones, cochineal, wool, salsaparilla, hides, and various
other commodities, to the great advantage of the royal revenue. Since the
time of the great and wise Solomon, neither ancient nor modern history
record the acquisition of such riches by any country, as have been derived
from New Spain. I do not now include the millions in gold and silver
derived from Peru, as that country was unknown when we conquered New Spain,
and was not conquered till ten years afterwards: Besides all which, Peru
has been involved in cruel civil wars, whereas we have ever remained
submissive in our allegiance to his majesty, and ready to devote our lives
and fortunes to his service. The numerous cities in New Spain are worthy
of consideration, but would be too tedious to enumerate. Besides the
archbishoprick of Mexico, we have ten bishopricks, with many cathedrals,
and monastaries belonging to the Dominicans, Franciscans, Augustines, and
the order of Mercy. Many hospitals, with extensive remissions and pardons
attached to them; besides the _Santa casa_ of our Lady of Guadeloupe,
where many holy miracles are performed daily. In Mexico there is an
university in which are taught grammar, theology, rhetoric, logic,
philosophy, and other sciences; and in which the students take the several
degrees of bachelor, licentiate, and doctor; having also a printing press
for books in the Spanish and Latin languages. If all I have now said be
insufficient, let the wise and learned read over this my true history with
impartial care, and they must confess that there never were men who have
gained more by their valorous achievements for their king than we the
brave conquerors, among the most valiant of whom I was considered. And I
say again, I myself, who am a true conqueror, am the most ancient of all.
Of the 550 soldiers who left Cuba along with Cortes, _five_ only are now
living in the year 1568, while I am writing this history; all the rest
having been slain in the wars, or sacrificed to the accursed idols, or
have died in the course of nature. Of 1300 soldiers who came with Narvaez,
exclusive of mariners, not more than ten or eleven now survive. Of those
who came with Garay, including the three companies which landed at St Juan
de Ulua previous to his own arrival, amounting to 1200 soldiers, most were
sacrificed and devoured in the province of Panuco. We five companions of
Cortes who yet survive, are all very old and bowed down with infirmities,
and extremely poor; having heavy charges of sons to establish, daughters
to marry off, and grand-children to maintain, with very small means to do
all this. Whereas we ought to have had the best properties in the country
allotted to us, in reward of our high prowess and transcendent services in
that country which we conquered; not indeed to the same extent with the
rewards granted to Cortes, but in just moderation in proportion to our
merits. This indeed was ordered by his majesty, but interest and
partiality gave away what we ought to have received to others, leaving
little for the royal patrimony or to be bestowed on us. Immediately after
the conquest, Cortes ought to have divided the whole country into five
shares, assigning the richest and best to his majesty, out of which to
reward those cavaliers who served him in his European wars; taking a share
and a half to himself, and for the establishment of churches, monasteries,
and municipalities; and dividing the remaining half in perpetual grants to
us the true conquerors, by which we should have all been amply provided

Our emperor was so truly a Christian monarch, that he would willingly have
granted us these favours, more especially as the conquest cost him nothing.
But we knew not then where to apply for justice, except to Cortes himself,
who did in all things as he thought fit, taking care of himself, and of
his friends and relations newly come from old Spain. We remained therefore
with the little which had been assigned to us, till we saw Don Francisco
de Montejo, who had waited on his majesty in Europe, return with the
appointment of adelantado and governor of Yucutan, estates in Mexico, and
other rewards. Diego de Ordas also, who went to court, obtained a
commandery of St Jago, and districts in New Spain. Don Pedro de Alvarado,
who likewise went to represent his services, was made adelantado and
governor of Guatimala and Chiapa, commander of the order of St Jago, and
obtained extensive grants of land. When therefore, we the conquerors saw
that those who did not reach his majesty, or had no one to speak for them,
were neglected, we transmitted a petition, by which we prayed that such
lands as fell vacant might be distributed among us in perpetuities, as had
been done by the first court of royal audience, of which Nuno de Guzman
was president; who had been directed to make the divisions more equal,
deducting in due proportions from the immoderate grants of Cortes, and
that the best districts and rents should be divided among us the true
conquerors, leaving the cities and great towns for his majesty. His
majesty likewise ordered the vassals of Cortes to be counted, leaving no
more than were specified in his patents; but I do not remember what was to
have been done with the surplus. Nuno de Guzman and the judges of his
tribunal were misled by advisers from making their grants perpetual, under
pretence that the conquerors would cease to depend upon and respect them
if independent, and that it was better to keep them under the necessity of
supplicating for subsistence, and likewise to preserve to themselves the
power of dividing the conquered lands to the advantage of their own
interest. Guzman and his oydors indeed, constantly assigned such districts
as fell vacant among the conquerors and colonists to universal
satisfaction; but were superseded in consequence of their disputes with

In 1550, when I was in Old Spain, a council was formed, consisting of
Bartholomew de las Casas, bishop of Chiapa, Vasco de Quiroga, bishop of
Mechoacan, and other cavaliers who had come as agents from New Spain and
Peru, with some gentlemen who had come on business to court; to which
council I also was called, as being the most ancient of the conquerors of
New Spain. At this time certain of the Peruvian gentlemen petitioned his
majesty to cause perpetual allotments of lands to be made in that kingdom,
and a similar petition was presented by Gonzalo Lopez and Alonzo de
Villanueva, who had come over as agents from Mexico. His majesty was
pleased to order the _rapartimiento_ or distribution of lands to be
referred to the council of the Indies, consisting of the Marquis de
Mondejar president, with the licentiates Gutierre Velasquez, Tello de
Sandoval, Gregorio Lopes de Briviesca, and the Doctor Hernan Perez de la
Fuente, oydors or judges of that court, together with the members of other
royal councils. At this meeting, it was proposed to make a perpetual
distribution of the lands of New Spain and Peru; I am uncertain if New
Granada and Popayan were to have been included. Many excellent reasons
were given for this measure being adopted, but it was strenuously opposed
by the members of the royal council of the Indies, together with Bishop de
las Casas, Fra Rodrigo his coadjutor, and the Bishop of las Charcas, who
insisted that the matter should be postponed till the return of the
emperor from Vienna, when every thing should be arranged to the
satisfaction of the conquerors: And thus the affair was dropped for the

After my return to New Spain, the conquerors then proposed to send agents
to solicit his majesty for our interest exclusively, in consequence of
which I was written to here in Guatimala, by Captain Andres de Tapia,
Pedro Morena de Medrana, and Juan Limpias Caravajal, on the subject. I
accordingly went round among the other conquerors who were settled in this
city, to raise a sum by subscription for the purpose, but this project
failed for want of money. At a subsequent period, our present invincible
king Don Philip, was pleased to command that the conquerors and their
posterity should be provided for, attending in the first instance to those
who were married. But all has been of no avail.

Two learned licentiates, to whom I communicated the MS. of this history,
observed that I had praised myself greatly in the battles of which I have
given an account, whereas I ought to have left that to be done by others.
But how is any one who was not in the wars with us to praise us as we
deserve? To compare myself, a poor soldier, with the great emperor and
warrior Julius Cesar, we are told by historians, that he used to write
down with his own hand an account of his own heroic deeds, not chusing to
entrust that office to others, although he had many historians in his
empire. It is not therefore extraordinary if I relate the battles in which
I fought, that it may be known in future ages, _thus did Bernal Diaz del
Castillo_; that my sons and grandsons may enjoy the fame of their ancestor,
as many cavaliers and lords of vassals do the deeds and blazons of their
predecessors. I shall therefore enumerate the various battles and other
warlike affairs in which I have been present. At Cape Cotoche, under
Cordova; at Pontonchan in a battle where half our number was slain; and in
Florida where we landed to procure water. Under Juan de Grijalva, I was
present in the second battle of Pontonchan. During my third voyage, under
Cortes, two pitched battles at Tabasco. On our arrival in New Spain, the
battle of Cingapacinga or Teoatzinco. Shortly afterwards three pitched
battles with the Tlascalans. The affair of Cholula. On our entry into
Mexico, I was at the seizure of Montezuma, which I do not enumerate as a
warlike exploit, but on account of its great boldness. Four months
afterwards, when with 276 men, Cortes defeated Narvaez who had 1300. The
relief of Alvarado, when the Mexicans made incessant attacks upon us
during eight days and nights, during which I reckon eight several battles,
at all of which I was present, and in the course of which we lost 870 men.
The battle of Obtumba or Otompan. A battle at Tepeaca. A battle at Tezcuco.
Two battles, in one of which I was wounded in the throat by a lance. Two
actions about the maize fields near Chalco. The rash attack on the
fortresses called the Rocks of the Marquis in our expedition round the
lake. The battle of Cuernavaca. Three battles at Xochimilco. During the
siege of Mexico, which lasted _ninety-three_ days, I find by my account
that I was engaged in upwards of eighty battles and skirmishes. After the
conquest, I was sent out on various expeditions to reduce Coatzacualco,
Chiapa, and the Zapotecans, in which we had several engagements. In
Chamula and Cuitlan, two engagements. In Teapa and Chematlan two others,
in one of which I was badly wounded in the throat. I forgot to mention,
that we were pursued for nine days in our flight from Mexico, and had to
fight four battles before the great one at Otompan. Several actions in our
expedition to Higueras and Honduras, during which in a battle at Culacotu
I had a horse killed under me which cost 600 crowns. After my return to
Mexico, I went upon an expedition into the mountains against the Zapotecas
and Mixtecas. I have on the whole been present in _one hundred and
nineteen_ battles, engagements, and skirmishes; so that it is not
wonderful if I praise myself for the many and notable services which I
have rendered to God, his majesty and all Christendom: And I give thanks
and praise to the Lord Jesus Christ, who hath preserved me in so many


[1] In this section Diaz gives a minute enumeration _of the valiant
companions who passed over to the conquest of Mexico with the most
adventurous and most magnanimous Don Hernando Cortes, Marquis of the
Valley_. This must assuredly be a most valuable document to vast
numbers of the present inhabitants of New Spain, by enabling them to
trace their honourable descent from the conquerors; but, as totally
uninteresting to the English reader, is here omitted.--E.

[2] These are the ordinary municipal officers of Spanish townships,
answerable to our mayors, aldermen, bailiffs, constables, &c.--E.

* * * * *




The present chapter, like that immediately preceding from the pen of
Bernal Diaz, although in strict language neither a journey nor a voyage,
records in every step of the conquerors a new _discovery_ of coasts,
islands, rivers, districts, and tribes, that had never been visited before.
In conformity with our uniform desire to have recourse upon all occasions
to the most authentic original authorities for every article admitted into
this collection, so far as in our power, the work of Zarate has been
chosen as the record of the discovery and conquest of Peru, in preference
to any modern compilation on the same subject. As we learn from himself,
Zarate was a person of rank and education, who went into Peru in 1543,
only _eighteen_ years after the first movements of Pizarro and Almagro
towards the discovery of that extensive country, and only _eleven_ years
after its actual invasion by Pizarro in 1532. From the illustrious
historian of America, Dr William Robertson, the work which we now offer to
the public for the first time in the English language, has the following
high character: "The history of Zarate, whether we attend to its matter or
composition, is a book of considerable merit, and great credit is due to
his testimony." Besides this general eulogy; in his enumeration of six
original authors whom he had consulted in the composition of that portion
of his History of America which refers to Peru, he clearly shews that
Zarate alone can be considered as at the same time perfectly authentic and
sufficiently copious for the purpose we have at present in view. The
substance of his account of all the six is as follows.

"_Two_ of the more early writers on the subject of the discovery and
conquest of Peru, Francisco de Xeres, the secretary of Pizarro, and Pedro
Sanchez, an officer who served under the conqueror, break off almost in
the introduction to the narrative, going no farther into the history of
the conquest than the death of Atahualpa in 1533, only one year after the
invasion of Peru. The _third_ in point of time, Pedro Cioca de Leon, only
two years earlier in his publication than Zarate, gives nothing more than
a description of the country, and an account of the institutions and
customs of the natives. Zarate is the _fourth_. The _fifth_, Don Diego
Fernandez, solely relates to the dissentions and civil wars among the
Spanish conquerors. The _sixth_ and last of these original authors,
Garcilasso de la Vega _Inca_, the son of a Spanish officer of distinction
by a _Coya_, or Peruvian female of the royal race, gives little more than
a commentary on the before mentioned writers, and was not published till
1609, seventy five years after the invasion of Peru by Pizarro[1]."

In the Bibliotheque des Voyages, VI. 319. mention is made of a Description
of Peru as published in French in 1480, and said to be a very rare work:
_Rare_, indeed, if the imprint be not an error, _fifty-two_ years before
the actual invasion and discovery. In the same useful work, the
performance of Zarate is thus characterized. "The author has not confined
his views to the history and conquest of Peru, but has given us a
statement of the natural features of the country, an account of the
manners of the inhabitants, and a curious picture of the religious
opinions and institutions of the Peruvians."

Four of the six original authors respecting Peru which are noticed by
Robertson, we have not seen; having confined our views to that of Zarate,
which is not only the best according to the opinion of that excellent
judge, but the only one which could answer the purpose of our present
collection. In preparing this original work for publication, it is proper
to acknowledge that we have been satisfied with translating from the
French edition of Paris, 1742; but, besides every attention to fidelity of
translation, it has been carefully collated throughout with the _Royal
Commentary_ of the Inca Garcilasso de la Vega, as published in English by
Sir Paul Rycaut, knight, in 1688; and with the excellent work of Dr
Robertson. It may be proper to mention, however, that the following
translation, though faithful, has been made with some freedom of
retrenching a superfluity of useless language; though nothing has been
omitted in point of fact, and nothing altered.

Having mentioned the work of Garcilasso de la Vega, which we have employed
as an auxiliary on the present occasion, it may be worth while to give a
short account of it in this place: For there never was, perhaps, a
literary composition so strangely mixed up of unconnected and discordant
sense and nonsense, and so totally devoid of any thing like order or
arrangement, in the whole chronology of authorship, or rather of
book-making, as has been produced by this scion of the Incas. No
consideration short of our duty to the public, could have induced us to
wade through such a labyrinth of absurdity in quest of information. It is
astonishing how the honest knight could have patience to translate 1019
closely printed folio pages of such a farrago; and on closing the work of
the Inca for ever, we heartily joined in the concluding pious thanksgiving
of the translator, _Praised be God_. This enormous literary production of
the _Inca_ Garcilasso, is most regularly divided and subdivided into parts,
books, and chapters; which contain here a little history, then digressions
on manners, customs, opinions, ceremonies, laws, policy, arts, animals,
vegetables, agriculture, buildings, &c. &c. &c. intermixed with bits and
scraps of history, in an endless jumble; so that for every individual
circumstance on any one of these topics, the pains-taking reader must turn
over the whole work with the most anxious attention. We quote an example,
taken absolutely at random, the titles of the Chapters of Part I. Book ix.

Chap. I. Huayna Capac makes a gold chain as big as a cable, and why. II.
Reduces ten vallies of the coast. III. Punishes some murderers. IV.-VII.
Incidents of his reign, confusedly related. VIII. Gods and customs of the
Mantas. IX. Of giants formerly in Peru. X. Philosophical sentiments of the
Inca concerning the sun. XI. and XII. Some incidents of his reign. XIII.
Construction of two extensive roads. XIV. Intelligence of the Spaniards
being on the coast. XV. Testament and death of Huayna Capac. XVI. How
horses and mares were first bred in Peru. XVII. Of cows and oxen.
XVIII.-XXIII. Of various animals, all introduced after the conquest.
XXIV.-XXXI. Of various productions, some indigenous, and others introduced
by the Spaniards. XXXII. Huascar claims homage from Atahualpa. XXXIII.-XL.
Historical incidents, confusedly arranged, all without dates.

The whole work is equally confused at best, and often much more so; often
consisting of extracts from other writers, with commentaries,
argumentations, ridiculous speeches, miracles, and tales recited by old
_Incas_ and _Coyas_, uncles aunts and cousins of the author. To add to the
difficulty of consultation, Sir Paul, having exhausted his industry in the
translation, gives no table of contents whatever, and a most miserable
Index which hardly contains an hundredth part of the substance of the work.
Yet the author of the Bibliotheque des Voyages, says "that this work is
_very precious_, as it contains the only remaining notices of the
government, laws, manners, and customs of the Peruvians."--Ed.

[1] History of America, _note_ cxxv.


After having enjoyed the office of secretary to the royal council of
Castille for fifteen years, the king was graciously pleased to order me to
Peru in 1543, as treasurer-general of that province and of the Tierra
Firma; in which employment I was entrusted with the entire receipt of the
royal revenues and rights, and the payment of all his majesties officers
in those countries. I sailed thither in the fleet which conveyed Blasco
Nugnez Vela the viceroy of Peru; and immediately on my arrival in the New
World, I observed so many insurrections, disputes, and novelties, that I
felt much inclined to transmit their memory to posterity. I accordingly
wrote down every transaction as it occurred; but soon discovered that
these could not be understood unless the previous events were explained
from which they originated. I found it necessary, therefore, to go back to
the epoch of the discovery of the country, to give a detail of the
occurrences in their just order and connection. My work might perhaps have
been somewhat more perfect, if I had been able to compose it in regular
order while in Peru; but a brutal major-general, who had served under
Gonzalo Pizarro[1], threatened to put any one to death who should presume
to write a history of his transactions, so that I was obliged to satisfy
myself with collecting all the documents I could procure for enabling me
to compose my history after returning into Spain. He was perhaps right in
wishing these transactions might fall into oblivion, instead of being
transmitted to posterity.

Should my style of writing be found not to possess all the polish that my
readers may desire, it will at least record the true state of events; and
I shall not be disappointed if it only serve to enable another to present
a history of the same period in more elegant language and more orderly
arrangement. I have principally directed my attention to a strict regard
for truth, the soul of history, using neither art nor disguise in my
description of things and events which I have seen and known; and in
relating those matters which happened before my arrival, I have trusted to
the information of dispassionate persons, worthy of credit. These were not
easy to find in Peru, most persons having received either benefits or
injuries from the party of Pizarro or that of Almagro; which were as
violent in their mutual resentments as the adherents of Marius and Sylla,
or of Caesar and Pompey of old.

In all histories there are three chief requisites: the designs, the
actions, and the consequences. In the two latter particulars I have used
all possible care to be accurate. If I may not always agree with other
authors in regard to the first of these circumstances, I can only say that
such is often the case with the most accurate and faithful historians.
After I had finished this work, it was my intention to have kept it long
unpublished, lest I might offend the families of those persons whose
improper conduct is therein pourtrayed. But some persons to whom I had
communicated my manuscript, shewed it to the king during his voyage to
England, who had it read to him as an amusement from the tiresomeness of
the voyage. My work had the good fortune to please his majesty, who
honoured it with his approbation, and graciously commanded me to have it
printed; and which I have the more readily complied with, as his royal
commands may protect my book from the cavils of the censorious readers.

* * * * *

Much difficulty occurs respecting the origin of the people who inhabited
Peru and the other provinces of America, and by what means their ancestors
could have crossed the vast extent of sea which separates that country
from the old world. In my opinion this may be explained from what is said
by Plato in his _Timaeus_, and the subsequent dialogue entitled _Atlantis_.
He says: "That the Egyptians report, to the honour of the Athenians, that
they contributed to defeat certain kings who came with a numerous army by
sea from the great island of Atlantis, which, beginning beyond the Pillars
of Hercules, is larger than all Asia and Africa together, and is divided
into ten kingdoms which Neptune gave among his ten sons, Atlas, the eldest,
having the largest and most valuable share." Plato adds several remarkable
particulars concerning the customs and riches of that island; especially
concerning a magnificent temple in the chief city, the walls of which were
entirely covered over with gold and silver, having a roof of copper, and
many other circumstances which are here omitted for the sake of brevity;
though it is certain that several customs and ceremonies mentioned by
Plato are still practised in the provinces of Peru. Beyond the great
island of Atlantis, there were other large islands not far distant from
the _Firm Land_, beyond which again was the _True Sea_. The following are
the words which Plato attributes, in his Timaeus, to Socrates, as spoken
to the Athenians. "It is held certain, that in ancient times your city
resisted an immense number of enemies from the Atlantic Ocean, who had
conquered almost all Europe and Asia. In those days the _Straits_ were
navigable, and immediately beyond them there was an island, commencing
almost at the _Pillars of Hercules_, which was said to be larger than Asia
and Africa united; from whence the passage was easy to other islands near
and opposite to the continent of the _True Sea_." A little after this
passage, it is added. "That nine thousand years before his days, a great
change took place, as the sea adjoining that island was so increased by
the accession of a prodigious quantity of water, that in the course of one
day it swallowed up the whole island; since when that sea has remained so
full of shallows and sand banks as to be no longer navigable, neither has
any one been able to reach the other islands and the _Firm Land_."

Some authors hare believed this recital to be merely allegorical, while
most of the commentators on Plato considered it as a real historical
narrative. The _nine thousand years_, mentioned by Plato, must not be
considered as an indication of this discourse being fabulous; since,
according to Eudoxus, we must understand them as lunar years or _moons_,
after the Egyptian mode of computation, _or nine thousand months_, which
are _seven hundred and fifty years_. All historians and cosmographers,
ancient as well as modern, have concurred to name the sea by which that
great island was swallowed up, the _Atlantic Ocean_, in which the name of
that ancient island is retained, giving a strong evidence of its former
existence. Adopting, therefore the truth of this historical fact, it must
be granted that this island of Atlantis, beginning from the Straits of
Gibraltar near Cadiz, must have stretched a vast way from north to south,
and from east to west, since it was larger than all Asia and Africa. The
_other_ islands in the neighbourhood must have been those now named
Hispaniola, Cuba, Porto Rico, Jamaica, and others of the West Indies; and
the _Firm Land_, that part of the Continent to which we still give the
name of _Tierra Firma_, together with the other countries and provinces of
America, from the Straits of Magellan in the south to the extreme north;
as Peru, Popayan, Golden Castille, Veragua, Nicaragua, Guatimala, New
Spain, _the Seven Cities_, Florida, _Baccalaos_, and so on along the north
to Norway. The authority of Plato is conclusive that the _New World_ which
has been discovered in our time, is the same Continent or Firm Land
mentioned by that philosopher; and his _True Sea_ must be that which we
name the _South Sea_, or Pacific Ocean; for the whole Mediterranean, and
all that was before known of the Ocean, which we call the _North Sea_, can
only be considered as rivers or lakes in comparison with the vast extent
of that other sea. After these explanations, it is not difficult to
conceive how mankind in ancient times may have passed from the great
island of _Atlantis_ and the _other_ neighbouring isles, to what we now
call the Tierra Firma, or _Firm Land_, and thence by land, or by the South
Sea, into Peru: As we must believe that the inhabitants of these islands
practised navigation, which they must have learned by intercourse with the
great island, in which Plato expressly says there were many ships, and
carefully constructed harbours. These, in my opinion, are the most
probable conjectures which can be formed on this obscure subject of
antiquity; more especially as we can derive no lights from the Peruvians,
who have no writing by which to preserve the memory of ancient times. In
New Spain, indeed, they had certain pictures, which answered in some
measure instead of books and writings; but in Peru, they only used certain
strings of different colours with several knots, by means of which and the
distances between them, they were able to express some things in a very
confused and uncertain manner, as shall be explained in the course of this

So much of the following history as relates to the discovery of the
country, has been derived from the information of Rodrigo Lozan, an
inhabitant of Truxillo in Peru, and from others who were witnesses of and
actors in the transactions which I have detailed.

[1] Even the orthography of the name of Pizarro is handed down to us with
some variety. In the work of Garcilasso de la Vega it is always spelt
Picarro: Besides which, the Inca Garcilasso, in his almost perpetual
quotations of our author Zarate, always gives the name Carate; the _c_,
or cerilla _c_, being equivalent in Spanish to the _z_ in the other
languages of Europe.--E.


_Of the discovery of Peru, with some account of the country and its

The city of Panama is a port on the South Sea, in that province of the
continent of America which is called Golden Castille. In the year 1524,
three inhabitants of that city entered into an association for the purpose
of discovering the western coast of the continent by the South Sea, in
that direction which has been since named Peru. These were Don Francisco
Pizarro of Truxillo, Don Diego de Almagro of Malagon, and Hernando de
Luque, an ecclesiastic. No one knew the family or origin of Almagro,
though some said that he had been found at a church door[1]. These men,
being among the richest of the colonists of Panama, proposed to themselves
to enrich and aggrandize themselves by means of discovering new countries,
and to do important service to the emperor, Don Carlos V. by extending his
dominions. Having received permission from Pedro Arias de Avila[2], who
then governed that country, Francisco Pizarro fitted out a vessel with
considerable difficulty, in which he embarked with 114 men. About fifty
leagues from Panama, he discovered a small and poor district, named _Peru_,
from which that name has been since improperly extended to all the country
afterwards discovered along that coast to the south for more than 1200
leagues. Beyond that Peru, he discovered another district, to which the
Spaniards gave the name of _El Pueblo quemado_, or the _Burnt People_. The
Indians of that country made war upon him with so much obstinacy, and
killed so many of his men, that he was constrained to retreat to
_Chinchama_ or Chuchama, not far from Panama.

In the mean time, Almagro fitted out another vessel at Panama, in which he
embarked with 70 men, and went along the coast in search of Pizarro as far
as the river San Juan, a hundred leagues from Panama. Not finding him
there, Almagro returned along the coast to the _Pueblo quemado_, where,
from certain indications of Pizarro having been there, he landed with his
men. The Indians, puffed up with the remembrance of the victory they had
gained over Pizarro, attacked Almagro with great courage, and did him
considerable injury; and one day they even penetrated the entrenchment he
had thrown up for defence, through some negligence in the guards, and put
the Spaniards to flight, who were forced to retreat with loss to their
vessel and put to sea, on which occasion Almagro lost an eye. Following
the shore on the way back towards Panama, Almagro found Pizarro at
Chinchama[3]. Pizarro was much pleased by the junction of Almagro, as by
means of his men, and some additional soldiers they procured in Chinchama,
they had now a force of two hundred Spaniards. They accordingly
recommenced the expedition, endeavouring to sail down the coast to the
southwards in two vessels and three large canoes. In this navigation they
suffered great fatigue from contrary winds and currents, and were much
incommoded when they attempted to land in any of the numerous small rivers
which fall into the South Sea, as they all swarmed at their mouths with
large lizards, or alligators, called caymans by the natives. These animals,
are ordinarily from twenty to twenty-five feet long, and kill either men
or beasts when in the water. They come out of the water to lay their eggs,
which they bury in great numbers in the sand, leaving them to be hatched
by the heat of the sun. These caymans have a strong resemblance to the
crocodiles of the river Nile. The Spaniards suffered much from hunger in
this voyage, as they could find nothing fit to eat along this coast except
the fruit of a tree called mangles, which grew in great abundance
everywhere along the shore. These trees are tall and straight, and have a
very hard wood; but as they grow on the shore, their roots being drenched
in sea water, their fruit is salt and bitter; yet necessity obliged the
Spaniards to subsist on them, along with such fish as they could find,
particularly crabs; as on the whole of that coast no maize was grown by
the natives. From the currents along this coast, which always set strongly
to the north, they were obliged to make their way by dint of constant
rowing; always harassed by the Indians, who assailed them with loud cries,
calling them banished men, and _hairy faces_, who were formed from the
spray of the sea, and wandered about without cultivating the earth, like
outcasts and vagabonds.

Having lost several of his men through famine and by the incessant attacks
of the Indians, it was agreed that Almagro should return to Panama for
recruits and provisions. Having procured twenty-four, they advanced with
these and the remains of their original force to a country named
_Catamez_[4], considerably beyond the river of St Juan, a tolerably
peopled country, in which they found plenty of provisions. The Indians of
this part of the coast, who were still hostile, were observed to have
certain ornaments of gold, resembling nails, inserted into holes made for
that purpose in different parts of their faces. Almagro was sent back a
second time to Panama, to endeavour to procure a larger force, and Pizarro
retired in the mean time to the small island of _Gallo_ somewhat farther
to the north, near the shore of the _Barbacoas_, and not far from Cape
_Mangles_, where he and his people suffered extreme hardships from
scarcity of provisions, amounting almost to absolute famine.

On the return of Almagro to Panama for reinforcements, he found the
government in the hands of Pedro de los Rios, who opposed the design of
Almagro to raise recruits, because those with Pizarro had secretly
conveyed a petition to the governor, not to permit any more people to be
sent upon an enterprize of so much danger, and requesting their own recal.
The governor, therefore, sent an officer to the Isle of Gallo, with an
order for such as were so inclined to return to Panama, which was eagerly
embraced by the greatest part of the soldiers of Pizarro, twelve only
remaining along with him. Not daring to remain with so small a force in an
island so near the main land, Pizarro retired to an uninhabited island
named Gorgona, about 70 miles farther north, and considerably more distant
from the coast than Gallo, in which island, which had abundance of springs
and rivulets, he and his small band of faithful associates, lived on crabs
in expectation of relief and reinforcement from Panama. At last a vessel
arrived with provisions, but no soldiers, in which Pizarro embarked with
his twelve men, to whose courage and constancy the discovery of Peru was
owing. Their names deserve to be handed down to posterity: Nicolas de
Ribera, Pedro de Candia a native of the Greek island of that name, Juan de
Torre, Alfonso Briseno, Christoval de Peraulte, Alfonso de Truxillo,
Francisco de Cuellar, and Alfonso de Molina[5]. The pilot of the vessel in
which they embarked was named Bartholomew Bruyz, a native of Moguer. Under
the guidance of this man, but with infinite difficulty from contrary winds
and adverse currents, Pizarro reached a district named _Mostripe_[6],
about equally distant from the two places since built by the Christians,
named Truxillo and San Miguel. With the very small number of men who
accompanied him, Pizarro dared not to advance any farther along the coast,
and contented himself with going a small way up the river _Puechos_ or de
la Chira[7]; where he procured some of the sheep[8] of the country, and
some of the natives on purpose to serve him as interpreters in the sequel.
Returning from thence, Pizarro went northwards to the port of Tumbez on
the south-side of the bay of Guayaquil, where he was informed that the king
of Peru had a fine palace, and where the Indians were said to be very rich.
This place was one of the most extraordinary in the country, until it was
ruined by the inhabitants of the island of Puna, as will be related
hereafter. At this place, three of his men deserted, who were afterwards
put to death by the Indians.

After these discoveries, Pizarro returned to Panama, having spent three
years in this voyage, counting from his first leaving Panama, in which
time he was exposed to many dangers fatigues and privations, by the
opposition and hostilities of the Indians, and through famine, and more
than all distressed by the discontents and mutinies of his people, most of
whom lost all hope of success, or of deriving any advantage from the
expedition. Pizarro soothed their fears and encouraged their perseverance
by every means in his power, providing for their necessities with much
prudent care, and bearing up against every difficulty with astonishing
firmness and perseverance: leaving to Almagro to provide men arms and
horses, and necessaries of all kinds for the enterprize. These two
officers, from being the richest of the settlers in Panama at the
commencement of their enterprize, were now entirely ruined and overwhelmed
in debt; yet did they not despair of ultimate success, and resolved to
prosecute the discovery of which a very promising commencement had now
been made[9].

In concert with his associates Almagro and Luque, Pizarro went to Spain,
to lay an account before the king of the discovery which he had made, and
to solicit the appointment of governor of that country, of which he
proposed to prosecute the discovery, and to reduce it under the dominion
of the crown of Spain. His majesty granted his demand, under those
conditions which used to be stipulated with other officers who engaged in
similar enterprizes. With this authority, he returned to Panama,
accompanied by Ferdinand, Juan, and Gonzalo Pizarro, and Francisco Martin
de Alcantara, his brothers. Ferdinand and Juan Pizarro were his brothers
both by father and mother, and the only lawful sons of Gonzalo Pizarro, an
inhabitant of Truxillo in Old Spain, a captain in the infantry regiment of
Navarre: Don Francisco Pizarro himself and Gonzalo Pizarro were natural
sons of the elder Gonzalo Pizarro by different mothers: Francisco de
Alcantara was likewise the brother of Don Francisco Pizarro, by his mother
only, but by a different father[10]. Besides these, Pizarro brought as
many men from Spain to assist in his enterprize as he could procure, being
mostly inhabitants of Truxillo and other places in Estremadura[11].

On his arrival at Panama in 1530, Pizarro and his associates used every
effort to complete the preparations for the enterprize; but at first a
dispute arose between him and Almagro. The latter complained that Pizarro
had only attended to his own interests when at the court of Spain, having
procured the appointments of governor and president of Peru for himself,
without making any mention of Almagro, or at least without having procured
any office for him, who had borne the far greater proportion of the
expences hitherto incurred. Pizarro alleged that the king had refused to
give any office to Almagro, though solicited by him for that purpose: But
engaged his word to renounce the office of president in his behalf, and to
supplicate the king to bestow that appointment upon him. Almagro was
appeased by this concession; and they proceeded to make every preparation
in concert that might be conducive to the success of the undertaking. But,
before entering upon the narrative of their actions, it seems proper to
give some account of the situation of Peru, of the most remarkable things
which it contains, and of the manners and customs of the inhabitants.

The country of Peru, of which this history is intended to treat, commences
at the equator, and extends south towards the antarctic pole[12]. The
people who inhabit in the neighbourhood of the equator have swarthy
complexions; their language is extremely guttural; and they are addicted
to unnatural vices, for which reason they care little for their women and
use them ill[13], The women wear their hair very short, and their whole
clothing consists of a short petticoat, covering only from the waist to
about the knees. By the women only is the grain cultivated, and by them it
is bruised or ground to meal, and baked. This grain, called maize in the
West-Indian Islands, is called _Zara_ in the language of Peru[14]. The men
wear a kind of shirts or jackets without sleeves, which only reach to the
navel, and do not cover the parts of shame. They wear their hair short,
having a kind of tonsure on their crowns, almost like monks. They have no
other dress or covering, yet pride themselves on certain ornaments of gold
hanging from their ears and nostrils, and are particularly fond of
pendants made of emeralds, which are chiefly found in those parts of the
country bordering on the equator. The natives have always concealed the
places where these precious stones are procured, but the Spaniards have
been in use to find some emeralds in that part of the country, mixed among
pebbles and gravel, on which account it is supposed that the natives
procured them from thence. The men also are fond of wearing a kind of
bracelets, or strings of beads, of gold and silver, mixed with small
turquoise stones and white shells, or of various colours; and the women
are not permitted to wear any of those ornaments.

The country is exceedingly hot and unwholesome, and the inhabitants are
particularly subject to certain malignant warts or carbuncles of a
dangerous nature on the face and other parts of the body, having very deep
roots, which are more dangerous than the small-pox, and almost equally
destructive as the carbuncles of the plague. The natives have many temples,
of which the doors always front the east, and are closed only by cotton
curtains. In each temple there are two idols or figures in relief
resembling black goats, before which they continually burn certain
sweet-smelling woods. From this wood a certain liquor exudes, when the
bark is stripped off, which has a strong and disagreeable flavour, by
means of which dead bodies are preserved free from corruption. In their
temples, they have also representations of large serpents, to which they
give adoration; besides which every nation, district, tribe or house, had
its particular god or idol. In some temples, particularly in those of
certain villages which were called _Pafao_, the walls and pillars were
hung round with dried bodies of men women and children, _in the form of
crosses_, which were all so thoroughly embalmed by means of the liquor
already mentioned, that they were entirely devoid of bad smell. In these
places also they had many human heads hung up; which by means of certain
drugs with which they were anointed, were so much shrunk or dried up as to
be no bigger than a mans fist[15].

This country is extremely dry, as it very seldom has any rain, and its
rivulets are few and scanty; so that the people are reduced to the
necessity of digging pit-wells, or of procuring water from certain pools
or reservoirs. Their houses are built of large canes or reeds. It
possesses gold, but of a very low quantity; and has very few fruits. The
inhabitants use small canoes hollowed out of the trunks of trees, and a
sort of rafts which are very flat. The whole coast abounds in fish, and
whales are sometimes seen in these seas. On the doors of the temples in
that district which is called _Caraque_, the figures of men are sometimes
seen, which have dresses somewhat resembling those of our deacons.

Near the last mentioned province, at Cape St Helena in the province of
Guayaquil, there are certain springs or mineral veins which give out a
species of bitumen resembling pitch or tar, and which is applied to the
same purposes. The Indians of that country pretend that in ancient times
it was inhabited by giants, who were four times the height of ordinary
men[16]. The Spaniards saw two representations of these giants at _Puerto
viejo_, one of a man and the other of a woman, and the inhabitants related
a traditionary tale of the descent of a young man from heaven, whose
countenance and body shone like the sun, who fought against the giants and
destroyed them with flames of fire. In the year 1543, Captain Juan de
Holmos, lieutenant-governor of Puerto viejo, caused a certain valley to be
carefully examined, in which these giants were were said to have been
destroyed, and in which ribs and other bones of prodigious size were dug
up, which fully confirmed the traditions of the Indians[17]. The natives
of this country have no knowledge whatever of writing, nor had they even
any use of that method of painting employed by the Mexicans for preserving
the memory of ancient events, which were handed down from father to son
merely by traditionary stories. In some places indeed they used an
extraordinary means for preserving the remembrance of important events, by
certain cords or strings of cotton called _Quippos_, on which they
represented _numbers_ by knots of different kinds, and at regulated
intervals, from _units_ up to _dozens_, and so forth; the cords being of
the same colours with those things which they were intended to represent.
In every province, there are persons who are entrusted with the care of
these _quippos_, who are named _Quippo camayos_, who register public
matters by means of these coloured strings and knots artificially disposed;
and it is wonderful with what readiness these men understand and explain
to others events that have happened several ages ago. There are public
buildings throughout the country which are used as magazines of these

To the south of the equator, and near the coast, is the island of Puna[18],
about twelve leagues in circumference, containing abundance of game, and
having great quantities of fish on its shores. It has plenty of fresh
water, and was formerly very populous, its inhabitants being almost
continually engaged in war, especially with the people of Tumbez, which is
twelve leagues distant to the south. These people wore shirts, above which
they had a kind of woollen garments. They went to sea in a peculiar kind
of flats or rafts, made of long planks of a light wood fixed to two other
cross planks below them to hold them together. The upper planks are always
an uneven number, usually five, but sometimes seven or nine; that in the
middle, on which the conductor of the float sits and rows, being longer
than the others, which are shorter and shorter toward the sides, and they
are covered by a species of awning to keep those who sit upon them from
the weather. Some of these floats are large enough to carry fifty men and
three horses, and are navigated both by oars and sails, in the use of
which the Indians are very expert. Sometimes, when the Spaniards have
trusted themselves on these floats, the Indian rowers have contrived to
loosen the planks, leaving the christians to perish, and saving themselves
by swimming. The Indians of that island were armed with bows and slings,
and with maces and axes of silver and copper. They had likewise spears or
lances, having heads made of gold very much alloyed; and both men and
women wore rings and other ornaments of gold, and their most ordinary
utensils were made of gold and silver. The lord of this island was much
feared and respected by his subjects, and so extremely jealous of his
women, that those who had the care of them were not only eunuchs, but had
their noses cut off. In a small island near Puna, there was found in a
house the representation of a garden, having the figures of various trees
and plants artificially made of gold and silver.

Opposite to the island of Puna on the main land, there dwelt a nation or
tribe which had given so much offence to the king of Peru, that they were
obliged as a punishment to extirpate all their upper teeth; in consequence
of which, even now, the people of that district have no teeth in their
upper jaws. From Tumbez for five hundred leagues to the south along the
coast of the south sea, and for ten leagues in breadth, more or less
according to the distance between the sea and the mountains, it never
rains or thunders. But on the mountains which bound that maritime plain,
there are both rain and thunder, and the climate has the vicissitudes of
summer and winter nearly as in Spain. While it is winter in the mountain,
it is summer all along the coast; and on the contrary, during the summer
on the mountain the coast has what may be termed winter. The length of
Peru, from the city of _St Juan de Parto_ to the province of Chili lately
discovered, is above 1800[19] leagues of Castille. Along the whole of that
length, a vast chain of exceedingly high and desert mountains extends from
north to south, in some places fifteen or twenty leagues distant from the
sea, and less in others. The whole country is thus divided into two
portions, all the space between the mountains and the sea being
denominated _the plain_, and all beyond is called the mountain.

The whole plain of Peru is sandy and extremely arid, as it never has any
rain, and there are no springs or wells, nor any rivulets, except in four
or five places near the sea, where the water is brackish. The only water
used by the inhabitants is from torrents which come down from the mountain,
and which are there formed by rain and the melting of snow, as there are
even very few springs in the mountainous part of the country. In some
places, these torrents or mountain-streams are twelve fifteen or twenty
leagues distance from each other, but generally only seven or eight
leagues; and travellers for the most part are under the necessity of
regulating their days journies by these streams or rivers, that they may
have water for themselves and cattle. Along these rivers, for the breadth
of a league, more or less according to the nature of the soil, there are
some groves and fruit-trees, and maize fields cultivated by the Indians,
to which wheat has been added since the establishment of the Spaniards.
For the purpose of irrigating or watering these cultivated fields, small
canals are dug from the rivers, to conduct the water wherever it is
necessary and where that can be done; and in the construction of these the
natives are exceedingly ingenious and careful, having often to draw these
canals seven or eight leagues by various circuits to avoid intermediate
hollows, although perhaps the whole breadth of the vale may not exceed
half a league. In all these smaller vales along the streams and torrents,
from the mountain to the sea, the country is exceedingly fertile and
agreeable. Several of these torrents are so large and deep, such as those
of Santa, Baranca, and others, that without the assistance of the Indians,
who break and diminish for a short time the force of the current, by means
of piles and branches forming a temporary wear or dike, the Spaniards
would be unable to pass. In these hazardous passages, it was necessary to
get over with all possible expedition, to avoid the violence of the stream,
which often rolled down very large stones. Travellers in the plain of Peru,
when going north or south, almost always keep within sight of the sea,
where the torrents are less violent, owing to the greater flatness of the
plain as it recedes from the mountain. Yet in winter the passage of these
torrents is extremely dangerous, as they cannot be then forded, and must
be crossed in barks or floats like those formerly mentioned, or on a kind
of rafts made of gourds inclosed in a net, on which the passenger reclines,
while one Indian swims before pulling the raft after him with a rope, and
another Indian swims behind and pushes the raft before him.

On the borders of these rivers there are various kinds of fruit-trees,
cotton-trees, willows, and many kinds of canes, reeds, and sedges. The
watered land is extremely fertile, and is kept under continual cultivation;
wheat and maize being sown and reaped all the year through. The Indians in
the plain seldom have any houses, or at best a kind of rude huts or cabins
made of branches of trees, often dwelling under the shade of trees,
without any habitation whatever. The women are habited in long dresses of
cotton which descend to their feet; while the men wear breeches and vests
which come down to their knees, and have a kind of cloak or mantle thrown
over their shoulders. They are all dressed in a similar manner, having no
distinctions except in their head-dresses, according to rank or the
different districts of the country; some wearing a tuft of wool, others a
single cord, and others several cords of different colours. All the
Indians of the plain are distributed into three orders; the first named
_Yungas_, the second _Tallanes_, and the third _Mochicas_. Every province
has its own peculiar language or dialect, different from all the rest. But
all the caciques or principal people and nobles of the country, besides
the language peculiar to their respective countries or districts, were
obliged to understand and speak the language of Cuzco. One of the Peruvian
kings, named Huana Capac, the father of Atahualpa or Atabalipa, was much
displeased that the caciques and principal people of his empire should be
under the necessity of employing interpreters when they had occasion to
speak to him; and gave orders that all the caciques and their relatives
should send their children to reside at court, to be instructed in the
language of Cuzco which was spoken by the Incas. This was the ostensible
reason of the measure; but in reality he wished to have these children in
his power, to serve as hostages for the loyalty of their parents. By this
means, all the nobles of the land came to understand the peculiar language
of Cuzco which was spoken at court; just as in Flanders all the nobles and
persons of any rank speak French. Owing to this circumstance, as the
Spaniards have learnt the language of the Incas, or of Cuzco, they are
able to converse with all the principal natives of Peru, both those of the
mountain and of the plain.

It may appear difficult to some of my readers to comprehend why no rain
should fall in the plain of Peru, considering that the country is bounded
along the whole of one side by the sea, where many vapours are constantly
ascending, and on the other side by a vast range of mountain which is
always enveloped in rain or snow. Those who have carefully considered this
singular phenomenon, allege that it is occasioned by the continual
prevalence of a strong south-west wind all along the coast and over the
whole plain of Peru, which carries off all the vapours which rise from the
sea and the land, without allowing them to rise sufficiently high in the
air to gather and fall down again in rain. From the tops of the high
mountains, these vapours are often seen far beneath on the plain in thick
clouds, while all is quite clear and serene on the mountain. By the
perpetual blowing of the same wind, the waters of the South-sea have a
constant current along the coast to the northward. Others allege a
different reason for this current; saying, that the water of the
South-sea having only a narrow outlet at the straits of Magellan, which
are only two leagues broad, and being there opposed by the Atlantic Ocean,
they are forced to return to the northward along the coast of Chili and
Peru. This constant wind and current render the navigation exceedingly
difficult, from Panama to Peru for the greater part of the year; so that
vessels are obliged always to tack to windward against wind and current.

The whole coast of Peru abounds in fish of various kinds, among which are
great quantities of sea-calves or seals, of several species. Beyond the
river of Tumbez there are no caymans or alligators, which is supposed to
be owing to the too great coolness of the sea and rivers, as these animals
delight in heat; but it is more probable that their absence from the
rivers of Peru is occasioned by their great rapidity, as they usually
frequent rivers that are very still. In the whole extent of the plain
there are only five cities inhabited by the Christians[20]. The first of
these, Puerto Viejo, about one degree south of the line, has very few
inhabitants, as it stands in a poor and unwholesome country, in which the
principal production of value is a few emeralds. Fifty leagues to the
southward, and about fifteen leagues from the coast, is the city of San
Miguel, named _Piuru_ by the Indians, in a pleasant and fruitful country,
but which has no mines of gold or silver. Most people who have occasion to
go there are liable to be afflicted with diseases of the eyes. Sixty
leagues farther along the coast, is the city of Truxillo, two leagues from
the sea, in the valley of Chimo, having a dangerous harbour of difficult
approach. This city stands on the banks of a river in a fine plain, which
is fertile in wheat and maize, and breeds great abundance of cattle,
having plenty of excellent water. Truxillo is very regularly built, and is
inhabited by about three hundred Spanish families. About eighty leagues
from Truxillo to the south, and in the valley of _Rimac_, stands the city
of _Los Reys_, or Lima, because it was founded at Epiphany, vulgarly
called the day of the kings. This city is about two leagues from the
harbour of _Callao_, an excellent and secure harbour, and is situated on a
large river in a fine plain, abounding in grain, and in all kinds of fruit
and cattle. All the streets are perfectly straight, and all of them lead
towards the country, which may be seen from all parts of the city. This is
a most agreeable residence, as the air is always temperate, being never
either too hot or too cold at any season of the year. During the four
months which constitute the summer in Spain, the air here is somewhat
cooler than for the rest of the year; and every day from sun-rise to noon
there falls a light dew, somewhat like the mists at Valladolid in Old
Spain. Far from being injurious to health, this slight moisture is
reckoned an infallible cure for headaches. This part of the country
produces the same kinds of fruit as are found in Spain, particularly
oranges, citrons, and lemons of all kinds, both sweet and sour, with figs
and pomegranates. It might assuredly have produced grapes in great
abundance, if the discords which have prevailed in this country had
allowed the colonists to plant and cultivate the vine; as it already has
several thriving vine plants which have grown from the pips of dried
raisins. The neighbouring country produces all kinds of pot herbs and
garden vegetables usually cultivated in Spain, in great perfection and
abundance. Indeed every thing conspires to assist cultivation at this
place, as every plantation has a canal from the river sufficiently large
for a mill-stream; and on the main river, the Spaniards have several
corn-mills. This city is universally reckoned the most salubrious and most
agreeable residence in all Peru; and its harbour is so convenient for
trade, that people come here from all parts of Peru to provide themselves
with necessaries of all kinds, bringing with them the gold and silver
which is so abundantly procured from the mines of the other provinces. For
these reasons, and because it is nearly central to Peru, it has been
chosen by his majesty for the residence of the royal court of audience, to
which the inhabitants of all Peru have to carry their law-suits, by which
means it is to be presumed that this place will in time become more
considerable and very populous. Lima at present, 1550, contains five
hundred houses; yet is larger than any city in Spain of fifteen hundred
houses, as the square in the centre of the town is very large, and all the
streets very wide, and because each house has a plot of eighty feet in
front by twice that in depth. The houses likewise are all of one storey,
as the country has no wood fit for joists or flooring-deals, every kind
which it produces becoming worm-eaten in three years. The houses, however,
are large and magnificent, and have many chambers and very convenient
apartments. The walls are built on both sides of brick, leaving a hollow
between of five feet, which is filled up with hard-rammed earth; in which
manner the apartments are carried up to a convenient height, and the
windows towards the street are raised considerably above the ground. The
stairs leading up are towards the interior court, and in the open air,
leading to galleries or corridors, which serve as passages to the several
apartments. The roofs are formed of some rough timbers, not even hewn
square, which are covered underneath by coloured matts like those of
Almeria, or painted canvas, serving as ceilings, to conceal these clumsy
joists: and the whole is covered over by way of roofing with branches of
trees with their leaves, which keep the rooms cool and effectually exclude
the rays of the sun. In this climate there is no call for any defence from
rain, which never falls in the plain of Peru.

One hundred and thirty leagues still farther south, is the city of
Villahermosa de Arequipa, containing about three hundred houses, in a very
healthy situation, abounding in provisions. Though at twelve leagues
distance from the sea, this place is very conveniently situated for trade,
as vessels can easily import thither by the river Quilca all sorts of
European commodities for the supply of the city of Cuzco and the province
of Charcas, which are much frequented on account of the mines of Potosi
and Porco; and from whence large quantities of silver are carried to
Arequipa, to be transported by sea to Lima and Panama, which saves a vast
expence and risk of land-carriage; now become more difficult since his
majesty has forbidden those heavy burdens upon the Indians by which they
were formerly oppressed. From this city we travel four hundred leagues by
land along the coast of the South Sea to the province of Chili, which was
discovered and in part colonized by the governor Pedro de Valdibia, or
Baldivia. In the language of the Indians the word _Chili_ signifies cold;
and it was so named by the Peruvians because of the terribly cold
mountains which were necessary to be passed on the way thither from Peru,
as will be particularly mentioned when we come to detail the perilous
enterprize undertaken by Don Diego de Almagro when he marched to discover
that distant country. Such is a rapid view of that portion of Peru which
is called _the plain_; to which must be added that the sea along its
entire coast is always smooth and tranquil, from which it has been called
the _Pacific Ocean_, being never vexed with storms, or disturbed by high
and low tides; so that vessels can everywhere ride in perfect security at
single anchor.

Those Indians who inhabit the mountainous regions of Peru are entirely
different from the inhabitants of the plain, whom they vastly exceed in
strength, courage, and mental abilities. They live in a much less savage
manner, having houses covered with earth, and being clothed in shirts and
mantles made from the wool of their sheep[21]; but their only head-dress
consists in a species of bands or fillets. The women wear a species of
vestments like shifts without sleeves, and gird their waists with several
turns of a woollen girdle, which give them a neat and handsome shape;
covering their shoulders with a mantle or plaid of woollen cloth like a
large napkin, which they fix round the neck with a large skewer or pin of
silver or gold called _topos_ in their language, with large broad heads,
the edges of which are sharpened so as to serve in some measure the
purposes of a knife. These women give great assistance to their husbands
in all the labours belonging to husbandry and household affairs, or rather
these things fall entirely to their lot. Their complexions are much fairer,
and their countenances, manners, and whole appearance, are greatly
superior in all respects to the natives of the plain. Their countries
likewise differ entirely; as instead of the sterile sands which are
everywhere interspersed over the plain, the mountain is covered through
its whole extent with verdure, and is everywhere furnished with rivulets
and springs of fine water, which unite to form the torrents and rivers
which descend so impetuously into the plain country. The fields are
everywhere full of flowers and plants of infinite varieties, among which
are many species like the plants which grow in Spain; such as cresses,
lettuce, succory, sorrel, vervain, and others; and vast quantities of wild
mulberries, and other fruit-bearing shrubs are found everywhere. There is
one particular plant with yellow flowers, having leaves like those of
celery, of most admirable virtues. If applied to the most putrid sore, it
makes it quite clean and sweet in a short time; but if laid upon a sound
place it soon eats to the very bone. There are many fruit-trees in this
country of various kinds, carrying abundant crops of fruit as good as
those of Spain without having the smallest care taken of them.

There are great numbers of sheep in the mountainous region, part of which
are domesticated by the Indians, but vast numbers of them are wild;
likewise abundance of deer and roes, many foxes and other smaller animals.
The natives often have public hunts of these animals, which they call
_chaco_, in which they take great delight. Four or five thousand natives,
more or less according to the population of the district, assemble
together, and enclose two or three leagues of country by forming a circle,
in which at first they are at considerable distances from each other, and
by gradually contracting their circle, beating the bushes, and singing
certain songs appropriated to the occasion, they drive all the animals of
every kind before them to an appointed place in the centre. The whole
company at length join in a small circle, holding each other by the hands,
and hallooing loudly, by which the beasts are terrified from endeavouring
to break through, and are easily taken in nets or even by the hand. Even
partridges, hawks, and other birds, are often so astonished by the loud
cries of the hunters as to fall down in the circle and allow themselves to
be taken. In these mountains there are lions or _pumas_, black bears, wild
cats of several kinds, and many species of apes and monkeys. The principal
birds, both of the plain and the mountain, are eagles, pigeons,
turtle-doves, plovers, quails, parroquets, falcons, owls, geese, white and
grey herons, and other water fowl; nightingales and other birds of sweet
song, many kinds of which have very beautiful plumage. There is one kind
of bird very remarkable for its astonishing smallness, not being larger
than a grasshopper or large beetle, which however has several very long
feathers in its tail. Along the coast there is a species of very large
vulture, the wings of which, when extended, measure fifteen or sixteen
palms from tip to tip. These birds often make prey of large seals, which
they attack when out of the water: On these occasions, some of the birds
attack the animal behind; others tear out his eyes; and the rest of the
flock tear him on all sides with their beaks, till at length they kill him,
and tear him to pieces. Upon the coast of the South Sea there are great
numbers of birds named _alcatraz_, somewhat like our ordinary poultry in
shape, but so large that each individual may contain three pecks of grain
in its crop. These birds feed mostly on fish which they catch in the sea,
yet are fond of carrion, which they go in search of thirty or forty
leagues inland. The flesh of these birds stinks most abominably, insomuch
that some persons who have been driven to the necessity of eating it have
died, as if poisoned.

It has been already said, that rain, hail, and snow, fall on the
mountainous region of Peru, where in many places it is intensely cold: But
in many parts of that region there are deep valleys in which the air is so
hot, that the inhabitants have to use various contrivances to defend
themselves from the excessive heat. In these vallies there is an herb
called _coca_, which is held in very high estimation by the natives: Its
leaf resembles that of the _sumach_, and the Indians have learnt from
experience that, by keeping a leaf of that plant in their mouth they can
prevent themselves for a long time from feeling either hunger or thirst.
In many parts of the mountain there is no wood, so that travellers in
those parts are obliged to use a species of earth which is found there for
the purpose of fuel, and which burns very much like turf or peats. In the
mountains there are veins of earth of various colours, and mines both of
gold and silver, in which the natives are exceedingly conversant, and are
even able to melt and purify these metals with less labour and expence
than the Christians. For this purpose they construct furnaces in the
mountains, placing always the door of the furnace towards the south, as
the wind blows always from that point. The ores are put into these
furnaces alternately with dried sheeps dung, which serves as fuel, and by
means of the wind the fire is raised to a sufficient power to melt and
purify the metal. In melting the vast quantities of silver which has been
dug from the mines of Potosi, the furnaces constructed with bellows were
found quite inefficient, while these furnaces, named _guayras_ by the
Indians, which signifies wind-furnaces, answered the purpose effectually.

The soil is everywhere extremely fertile, and gives abundant returns of
all the kinds of grain which are there sown; insomuch that from one bushel
of seed for the most part at hundred bushels are reaped, sometimes an
hundred and fifty, and even as high as two hundred. The natives employ no
ploughs, but labour the earth with a kind of hoes; and set their seed into
the ground in holes made with a dibble, or pointed stick, just as beans
are sown in Spain. All kinds of pot and garden herbs grow so luxuriantly
that radishes have been seen at Truxillo as thick as a mans body, yet
neither hard nor stringy. Lettuces, cabbages, and all other vegetables
grow with similar luxuriance: But the seeds of these must all be brought
from Spain; as when raised in the country the produce is by no means so
large and fine. The principal food of the Indians is maize, either roasted
or boiled, which serves them for bread, and venison of various kinds,
which they salt up for use. They likewise use dried fish, and several
kinds of roots, one of which named _yuca_ resembles skirret; likewise
lupines and many other leguminous vegetables. Instead of wine, they make a
fermented liquor from maize, which they bury in the earth along with water
in tubs or large jars, where it ferments. In this process, besides the
maize in its natural state, a certain quantity of maize which has been
steeped in a particular manner is used as a ferment; and there are men and
women who are versant in the manner of steeping maize, and are hired for
this purpose. When this kind of drink is made by means of stagnant water,
it is reckoned stronger and better than when running water is used. In the
West Indian islands this drink is called _chica_, but the Peruvian name is
_azua_. It is either white or red, according to the kind of maize used for
its preparation, and inebriates even more readily than Spanish wine; yet
the Indians prefer the latter when it can be procured. They make another
kind of liquor from the fruit of certain trees, which they call _molles_;
but it is by no means so well liked as _azua_ from maize.

The first city of the Christians in the mountain of Peru is _Quito_, which
is about four degrees to the south of the equator[22]. This city is
situated in an agreeable and fertile district; and particularly since 1544
and 1545, when rich mines of gold were discovered in its neighbourhood, it
has become populous, and continued to increase fast in the number of its
inhabitants; till in the destructive civil wars its people were almost
entirely cut off by Gonzalo Pizarro and his adherents, as they favoured
the party of the viceroy Blasco Nugnez Vela, who made this place his
ordinary residence. The Spaniards had no other establishment in the
mountain till the discovery of the province of _Bracamoras_[23], by the
captains, Juan Porcel and Vergara, who established some small colonies in
these parts, on purpose to continue the discovery and conquest of the
interior country; but these establishments have been since entirely ruined,
as Gonzalo Pizarro recalled these two captains and their men to assist him
in his war. This discovery was made under the orders of the licentiate
Vaca de Castro, who was then governor of Peru. The Captain Porcel was sent
by him from S. Miguel de Piura, and Vergara into the province of
_Chachapoyas_ farther to the south; but they unexpectedly met each other
in the course of their exploration of the country, and quarrelled about
the boundaries of their discoveries, in consequence of which they were
recalled by Vaco de Castro, and were at Lima at the commencement of the
civil war in the service of the viceroy; and when he was made prisoner
they entered into the party of Gonzalo Pizarro. The place which they
discovered, called Bracamoras, is a hundred and sixty leagues from Quito
by way of the mountain; and eighty leagues farther south they discovered a
province named Chacaapoyas, where there is a small Christian town named
_Levanto_[24]. This province abounds in provisions, and has mines of some
value. Its situation is peculiarly strong against an enemy, as it is
surrounded on all sides by a deep valley, in which runs a considerable
river; so that by breaking down the bridges, it may be made very difficult
of access. The Maestre de Campo Alfonzo de Alvarado, who held the command
of this province, established a colony of Christians at this place.

Sixty leagues farther to the south, in the district of _Guanuco_, Vaco de
Castro established a colony which he ordered to be called _Leon_, as he
came from the city of that name in Spain. The country of Guanuco is
fertile and abounds in provisions; and valuable mines are believed to
exist on that side which is occupied by a warlike and powerful inca in a
province of the Andes, as shall be mentioned hereafter[25]. There is no
other place in the mountains farther south which has been as yet settled
by the Christians, till we come to the province of _Guamanga_, in which is
a small town named San Juan de la Vittoria[26], which is sixty leagues
from Leon. In San Juan there are very few Spaniards, but their number is
expected to increase, if the neighbouring inca can be induced to submit to
peace; as he at present occupies the best lands belonging to that city, in
which there are many mines, and which produces the herb called _coca_ in
great abundance, formerly mentioned as of great value. The town of
Guamanga is about eighty leagues from the city of Cuzco; the road between
being exceedingly difficult, as it goes over high and precipitous
mountains, and through very dangerous passes.

Before the arrival of the Spaniards, the kings of Peru resided in the city
of Cuzco, whence they governed the whole of this great country of which I
have endeavoured to give some account, and which will be more particularly
treated of in the sequel of this history. This city served as the common
centre for all the chiefs or caciques of this vast kingdom, to which they
resorted from all quarters, to pay their tributes to the king, and to
obtain justice in case of disputes among each other. At that time Cuzco
was the only place in all Peru that had the least resemblance to a city.
It had even a strong fortress, built of such enormous dressed stones, that
it was very wonderful to conceive in what manner the Indians had been able
to transport such vast masses of stone without the aid of any animals of
draught. In fact some of these are so large that they would have required
ten yokes of oxen to have dragged them along on a fit carriage. The houses
which are now inhabited by the Spaniards are the same which were formerly
occupied by the Indians; some of which houses have been merely repaired
and others enlarged by their present possessors. This city was formerly
divided into four quarters, corresponding to the four cardinal points; and
by orders of the _Incas_, or sovereigns of Peru, all those natives who
came to the capital were obliged to lodge in the particular quarter which
was towards the direction of the province from whence they came, under
severe penalties. The south quarter of the city was named _Colla-sugo_,
from the province of _Collao_ which lay to the south. The northern quarter
was named _Chinca-sugo_, from the large and renowned province of
_Chinca_[27] in that direction. The eastern and western quarters were
respectively named _Ande-sugo_ and _Conde-sugo_. The country about Cuzco
is extremely fertile, and abounds in all kinds of provisions, and the
climate is so healthy that the inhabitants are seldom if ever sick.
Around the city there are many rich mines, whence all the gold which has
been hitherto sent into Spain was procured. These indeed have been nearly
abandoned since the discovery of the rich silver mines of Potosi; both
because much greater profit may be made from these other mines of silver,
and because the working of these are far less dangerous both to the
Indians and Spaniards who are there employed.

From the city of Cuzco to that of La Plata in the province of Charcas, the
distance is more than a hundred and fifty leagues, between which two
places there is a large flat province named _Collao_, above fifty leagues
long; the principal part of which, named _Chiquito_, belongs to his
majesty. Seeing so large an extent of country unoccupied by the Spaniards,
the licentiate De la Gasca sent some people there in 1545 to commence an
establishment. The city of La Plata is situated in the coldest part of all
the mountainous region of Peru, and has very few inhabitants, but these
are extremely rich, and spend the greatest part of the year in the mines
of _Porco_, and in those of _Potosi_ since their discovery. Towards the
left hand or the east from La Plata, a new province was explored by Diego
de Rojas and Philip Gutierez, by the order of Vaca de Castro, which was
named _Rojas_[28] from one of these captains. It is said to be fertile and
abounding in provisions, but they have not found so much riches there as
was expected. Captain Domingo de Ytala and his companions came by that way
into Peru in 1549, having remounted the Rio Plata from the Atlantic Ocean.

Such is the state and situation of all that has been hitherto discovered
of this vast country of Peru, which is chiefly known along the coast of
the South Sea, and has not been much explored in its inland parts, on
account of the vast quantity of lofty and rude mountains, by which it is
everywhere pervaded, and which are extremely difficult to pass; because of
their height and precipitous nature, the excessive cold which prevails
among them, and the scarcity of food. Yet the industry and courage of the
Spaniards would have overcome all these obstacles, if there were any hope
of finding a rich country beyond.

As the Peruvians were ignorant of writing they knew nothing respecting the
history of the creation and deluge or of their own origin. They had
however some tradition among them, which had been altered from age to age
according to the fancies of the reciters. They said that there came
anciently from the north, a man who had no bones or joints, and who was
able to shorten or lengthen the way before him as he thought fit, and to
elevate or depress the mountains at his pleasure. By this man the ancient
Indians were created; and as those of the plain had given him some cause
of displeasure, he rendered their country sterile and sandy as it now is,
and commanded that it should never rain in that district; yet sent them
the rivers and torrents which run through it, that they might have
wherewithal to quench their thirst. This person, named _Con_, who they
allege was son of the sun and moon, they esteemed and adored as a god,
pretending that he had given the herbs and wild fruits as food for the
people whom he had created. After him came another man from the south,
named _Pachacamac_, or the creator, who was likewise the son of the sun
and moon, but more powerful than _Con_, who disappeared on his arrival,
leaving the men whom he had created without chiefs or laws, and Pachacamac
transformed them all into various animals, as birds, cats, bears, lions,
and the like, giving origin in this manner to all the beasts and birds
which are now found in the country. After this Pachacamac created the
present race of Indians, teaching them the art of labouring the ground for
the cultivation of plants of various kinds for food. Pachacamac is
considered as a god, and all the principal persons among the Peruvians are
desirous of being buried in the province named from him Pachacamac, as he
resided there, which is about four leagues from the city of Lima[29].
They pretended that their god Pachacamac continued several ages among them,
even to the time of the arrival of the Spaniards, since when he has
disappeared. Hence we may presume that he was some demon by whom they were
miserably abused and misled, and who filled their minds with so many
extravagant absurd fables.

The Indians believe likewise, that even before Con and Pachacamac, there
was a great deluge, during which mankind saved themselves in great caves
in the high mountains, into which they carried a store of food, shutting
up the entries, and carefully filling up all the crevices, to keep out the
water. After a long while, they sent out some dogs, who returned to them
all wet but not dirtied with mud, from which circumstance they concluded
that the waters still remained very high, and they did not venture to
leave their caverns till the dogs came back a second time all covered with
mud. They allege that great numbers of serpents were engendered by the
moisture left in the earth by this deluge, by which their ancestors were
much distressed for a long time, till they at length succeeded to
extirpate them. From this tradition they appear to have retained some
confused notion of the deluge, although they were ignorant of the way in
which Noah and seven other persons were saved in the ark to repeople the
whole earth. Perhaps their tradition may refer to some partial deluge,
like that of Deucalion.

The have a notion that the world is to come to an end; before which there
is to be a great drought, when no rain is to fall for several years. On
this account, in former times, the caciques used to lay up large magazines
of maize to serve them during the long drought. Even yet, the more timid
among the Peruvians make a great lamentation when the sun or moon are
eclipsed, believing the end of the world to be at hand; as they allege
that these luminaries are to be extinguished at the destruction of the

The Peruvians worship the Sun and Moon as deities, and swear by these
luminaries and by the earth, which they consider as their mother. In their
temples they adore certain stones, as representatives of the sun, which
they name _guacas_, a word signifying to weep, which they do on entering
into their temples. No person is permitted to approach these guacas except
the priests who sacrifice to these idols, who are all clothed in white.
When they go up to their idols, they carry certain white cloths in their
hands, prostrating themselves and crawling on the earth, and addressing
their idols in a language which is not understood by any of the natives.
By these priests all the offerings for the idols are received and buried
in the temples, as the Indian votaries make gifts of figures in gold or
silver of those things for which they address their prayers to the guaca.
These priests likewise offer sacrifices of animals and even of men to
their gods, searching the hearts and intrails of the victims for certain
signs which they wish to find, and repeating their abominable sacrifices
until they meet with those signs which they desire; pretending that the
idols are not satisfied by the sacrifices till these appear. During all
the time that the priests are engaged in sacrificing, they never appear in
public, neither have they any intercourse with women, and employ
themselves all night in loud cries, invoking the demons near to the places
in which the guacas are kept, which are extremely numerous, as most houses
have each their own guaca. The priests prepare themselves for having
intercourse with the demons by long fasts, after which they tie up their
eyes and some even carry their superstition to such excess as to put out
their own eyes. The caciques and other great men among the Peruvians never
undertake any affair of importance without having first consulted the
idols, or demons rather, by means of the priests.

In the temples of the sun the Spaniards found several large earthen jars
containing the dried bodies of children which had been sacrificed. Among
the figures of gold and silver which were used as ornaments to the guacas,
there were several which had a strong resemblance to the mitres and
crosiers of our bishops, and some of these idols were found having mitres
on their heads. When Thomas de Verlanga, bishop of Tierra Firma travelled
through Peru, with his mitre, in which he was seen by the Indians
celebrating the mass, they asked if he was the guaca of the Christians.
When asked the reason of these mitres, they could only say that they had
been handed down from their ancestors. In every part of Peru there were
certain houses or monasteries, which were inhabited by women who were
consecrated to the sun. These women never went out, but were perpetually
employed in spinning cotton and wool, which they wove into cloth, and then
burned along with the bones of white sheep, throwing the ashes into the
air in honour of the sun. These women were consecrated to perpetual
celibacy, and were put to death if found to be with child, unless they
could swear that their child was begotten by the sun.

Every year, at the season of the maize harvest, the mountaineer Peruvians
had a solemn festival; on which occasion they set up two tall straight
trees like masts, on the top of which was placed the figure of a man
surrounded by other figures and adorned with flowers. The inhabitants went
in procession armed with bows and arrows and regularly marshalled into
companies, beating their drums and with great outcries and rejoicings,
each company in succession discharging their arrows at the dressed up
figure. After which the priests set up an idol at the bottom of the masts,
before which they sacrificed a man or a sheep, sprinkling the idol with
the blood of the victim; and having inspected the heart and entrails of
the sacrifice, they reported the signs they had discovered to the people,
who were sad or rejoiced according as these were good or bad. The whole of
this festival was usually spent in dancing and drinking, and in various
games and sports, some of which were warlike exercises, with maces, clubs,
axes and other arms.

All the caciques and other principal inhabitants of Peru are reposited
after their death in a kind of vaults, clothed in all their richest
dresses, and seated in a kind of chairs which they name _duos_. It was
customary also to bury along with them one or two of their best beloved
wives, and on this occasion the honour was frequently contested among the
wives of the deceased, unless when the husband had previously settled who
were to be chosen to accompany him in the tomb. Two or three youths of
their train, and all their gold and silver-plate used also to be buried
along with them; all of which was done in the hope of one day rising again
from the dead, and that they might then appear in proper style,
accompanied by their wives and servants. When the Spaniards broke up these
sepulchres on purpose to take possession of their buried treasures, the
Peruvians requested of them not to disturb the bones of the dead, that
they might not be hindered in their resurrection. In the burial ceremony,
the relations of the deceased used to pour some of the liquor formerly
mentioned, named _Chica_, into the grave, of which a portion was conveyed
by some hollow canes into the mouth of the dead person. On the top of the
tomb or sepulchre, wooden images were placed, representing the appearance
of the deceased; but on the graves of the lower orders, they satisfied
themselves by some painted emblems of their profession or employment, more
especially if they happened to be warriors.

In all the provinces of Peru there were certain nobles or principal
persons, of whom the chiefs or rulers were named _curacas_, similar in
every respect to the caciques of the islands. As the Spaniards who
conquered Peru had been accustomed to name many things according to the
language of Hispaniola and Cuba, and were at first ignorant of the
Peruvian language, they continued to employ the terms to which they had
been accustomed; and the Peruvians have so far accommodated themselves to
this language, especially in speaking to the Spaniards, that they mostly
use these terms. Thus they call those chiefs _caciques_, who in their own
language are named _curacas_, their bread corn and drink, which in the
Peruvian are _zara_ and _azua_, they denominate _maize_ and _chica_, which
names were brought from the islands by the Spaniards. These curacas or
caciques were the judges and protectors of their subjects in peace, and
their leaders in war against the neighbouring tribes. The whole people of
Peru lived in that manner for many years under a multiplicity of
independent chiefs, having no king or supreme chief; until at length a
warlike nation came from the environs of the great lake Titicaca named the
Incas in the language of Peru. These men had their heads close shaven, and
their ears pierced, in which they wore large round pendents of gold, by
which their ears were dragged down upon their shoulders, in consequence of
which they were called _ringrim_, or the large ears. Their chief was
called _Zapalla Inca_[30], or the only king; though others say that he was
named _Inca Vira cocha_, or the king from the scum of the lake, because
the astonished natives, not knowing the origin of their invaders, believed
that they had started into existence from the scum or mud of the great
lake. This great lake of Titicaca is about eighty leagues in circumference,
from which a large river runs to the southwards, which in some places is
half a league in breadth, and which discharges its waters into a small
lake about forty leagues from the great lake, which has no outlet. This
circumstance gives great astonishment to many, who are unable to
comprehend how so vast a body of water should disappear in so small a
reservoir. As this smaller lake appears to have no bottom, some conceive
that it discharges itself into the sea by some subterranean communication,
like the river Alphaeus in Greece.

These Incas established themselves in the first place at Cuzco, from
whence they gradually extended their sway over the whole of Peru, which
became tributary to them. The empire of the Incas descended in successive
order, but not by immediate hereditary rules. On the death of a king, he
was succeeded by his immediately younger brother; and on his demise the
eldest son of the preceding king was called to the throne; so as always to
have on the throne a prince of full age. The royal ornament worn by the
supreme Inca in place of a crown or diadem, consisted in a fringe of
coloured worsted from one temple to the other, reaching almost to the eyes.
He governed their extensive empire with much grandeur and absolute power;
and perhaps there never was a country in the world where the subjects were
so submissive and obedient. They had only to place a single thread drawn
from their diadem in the hands of one of the _ringrim_ or great ears, by
which he communicated to this deputy the most absolute delegation of power,
which was respected and obeyed over the whole empire. Alone, and without
troops or attendants, the message or order which he carried was instantly
obeyed, were it even to lay waste a whole province, and to exterminate
every one of its inhabitants; as on the sight of this thread from the
royal fillet, every one offered themselves voluntarily to death, without a
single murmur or the slightest resistance.

In the before mentioned order of succession, the empire of the Incas fell
in process of time to a sovereign named _Huana Capac_[31], which signifies
the young rich man. This prince made great conquests, and augmented the
empire more considerably than had been done by any one of his predecessors,
and ruled over the whole more reasonably and with greater justice and
equity than had ever been done by the former sovereigns. He established
everywhere the most perfect police, and exact rules for cultivating the
earth; ruling and governing among a barbarous and ignorant nation with the
most surprising order and justice; and the love and obedience of his
subjects was equally wonderful and perfect. They gave him a signal proof
of this, worthy of being mentioned, in the construction of two roads
through the whole extent of Peru for his more convenient travelling; of
which the difficulty labour and expence equal or even surpass all that the
ancients have written of the seven wonders of the world. Huana Capac, in
marching from Cuzco to conquer the kingdom of Quito, had to march five
hundred leagues by the mountains, where he had everywhere to encounter
excessive difficulties, from bad roads, rocks, precipices and ravines,
almost impracticable in many places. After he had successfully executed
this great enterprize, by the conquest and submission of Quito and its
dependencies, his subjects conceived that it was incumbent on them to do
honour to his victorious career, by preparing a commodious road for his
triumphant return to Cuzco. They accordingly undertook, and executed by
prodigious labour, a broad and easy road through the mountains of five
hundred leagues in length, in the course of which they had often to dig
away vast rocks, and to fill up valleys and precipices of thirty to forty
yards in depth. It is said that this road, when first made, was so smooth
and level that it would have admitted a coach with the utmost ease through
its whole length; but since that time it has suffered great injuries,
especially during the wars between the Spaniards and the Peruvians, having
been broken up in many places, on purpose to obstruct the invasion of the
enemy. The grandeur and difficulty of this vast undertaking may be readily
conceived, by considering the labour and cost which has been expended in
Spain to level only two leagues of a mountain road between Segovia and
Guadarrama, and which after all has never been brought to any degree of
perfection, although the usual passage of the king and court on travelling
to or from Andalusia or the kingdom of Toledo. Not satisfied with this
first astonishing labour, the Peruvians soon afterwards undertook another
of a similar and no less grand and difficult kind. Huana Capac was fond of
visiting the kingdom of Quito which he had conquered, and proposed to
travel thither from Cuzco by way of the plain, so as to visit the whole
of his extensive dominions. For his accommodation likewise, his subjects
undertook to make a road also in the plain; and for this purpose they
constructed high mounds of earth across all the small vallies formed by
the various rivers and torrents which descend from the mountain, that the
road might be everywhere smooth and level This road was near forty feet
wide, and where it crossed the sandy heights which intervene betwixt the
verdant vallies of the torrents, it was marked on each side by stakes,
forming palings in straight lines to prevent any one losing the way. This
road was five hundred leagues in length like that of the mountain; but the
palings are now wanting in many places, the wood of which they were
constructed having been used by the Spaniards for fuel during the war; but
the mounds still exist across the vallies, and most of them are yet
tolerably entire, by which the grandeur of the entire work may be judged
of. In his journeys to and from Quito, Huana Capac used to go by one of
these roads and return by the other; and during his whole journey his
subjects used to strew the way with branches and flowers of the richest

Besides the two great roads already mentioned, Huana Capac ordered to be
built on the mountain road a number of large palaces, at the distance of a
days journey from each other, having a prodigious number of apartments,
sufficient to lodge his own personal suite and all his army. Such were
likewise built along the road in the plain, but not so numerous or so near
each other as on the mountain road, as these palaces of the plain had all
to be placed on the sides of the rivers for convenience and the
procurement of provisions and other necessaries; so that they were in some
places eight or ten leagues distant from each other, and in other places
fifteen or twenty leagues. These buildings were named _tambos_, and the
neighbouring Indians were bound to furnish each of these with provisions
and every thing else that might be wanted for the royal armies; insomuch
that in each of these _tambos_, in case of necessity, clothing and arms
could be had for twenty or thirty thousand men. Huana Capac was always
escorted by a considerable body of soldiers, armed with lances, halberts,
maces, and battle axes, made of silver or copper, and some of them even of

In their armies, besides these arms, the Peruvians used slings, and
javelins having their points hardened in the fire. On such parts of their
rivers as furnished materials for the purpose, they built wooden bridges;
and where timber could not be had, they stretched across the stream two
large cables made of a plant named _maguey_, forming a kind of net work
between these of smaller ropes and masts, strong enough to answer the
purpose of a bridge. In this manner they constructed bridges of a
surprizing magnitude; some of them being thirty yards broad and four
hundred yards long[32]. In such places as did not admit of the
construction of bridges, they passed over rivers by means of a cable or
thick rope extended from side to side, on which they hung a large basket,
which was drawn over by means of a smaller rope. All these bridges were
kept in repair by the inhabitants of the districts in which they stood.

The king of Peru was always carried in a species of litter covered over
with plates of gold, and was attended by more than a thousand of the
principal native nobles, who relieved each other in carrying the royal
litter on their shoulders. All these men were counsellors, principal
officers of the household, or favourites of the prince. The caciques or
curacas of the different provinces were likewise carried in litters on the
shoulders of their vassals. The Peruvians were exceedingly submissive to
their sovereigns, insomuch that even the most powerful lord always entered
the presence barefooted, and carrying some present wrapped up in a cloth,
as a mark of homage; and even if one person had occasion to go an hundred
times in one day to speak to the king, the present had to be repeated
every time he went. To look the king in the face was considered as a
criminal disrespect; and if any one should happen to stumble while
carrying the royal litter, so as to make it fall, his head was immediately
cut off. At every half league on the public roads throughout the whole
empire, there were Indians in constant attendance to relieve each other in
carrying dispatches, which they did swifter than our post horses. When any
province or district was subdued, the natives of the place, or at least
all their chiefs and principal people, were immediately removed to other
parts of the empire, and natives from other places which had been long
subjected were sent to occupy the new conquest, by which means the
fidelity and submission of the whole were secured. From every province of
the empire, yearly tributes of the several productions of their respective
countries were sent to the king; and even some sterile districts above
three hundred leagues distant from Cuzco, had to send yearly a number of
lizards as a mark of their submission, having nothing of any value to send.
Huana Capac rebuilt the temple of the sun at Cuzco, and covered over all
the walls and the roof of that structure with plates of gold and silver.
During his reign, one Chimocappa, who was curaca or prince of a large
district in the plain, above a hundred leagues in length, chose to erect
the standard of rebellion; but Huana Capac marched against him in person,
defeated him in battle, and put him to death; after which he commanded
that the Indians of the plain should not be permitted to carry arms. Yet
he allowed the son and successor of Chimocappa to remain in the province
of _Chimo_, in which the city of Truzillo has been since built.

Peru was astonishingly full of those animals called sheep; as Huana Capac
and his predecessors had established laws for their multiplication and
preservation. Every year a certain proportion of these animals belonging
to individuals were set apart as a kind of tythe or offering to the sun,
and these consecrated animals multiplied greatly, no person being allowed
to injure them under pain of sacrilege, except the prince only for his own
use or that of his army. On such occasions, he gave orders for one of
these hunts called _chacos_, formerly mentioned, at some of which twenty
or thirty thousand sheep have been taken at one time. Gold was in great
request among the Peruvians, as the king and all the principal persons of
the empire used it for the construction of vessels for all uses, as
ornaments for their persons, and as offerings to their gods. The king had
everywhere carried along with him a kind of couch or table of gold, of
sixteen carats fine, on which he used to sit, and which was worth 25,000
ducats of standard gold. This was chosen by Don Francisco Pizarro, at the
time of the conquest, in consequence of an agreement, by which he was
authorized to appropriate some single jewel or valuable article to his own
use, besides his regular share of the plunder. When the eldest son of
Huana Capac was born, he ordered a prodigious chain or cable of gold to be
made, so large and heavy that two hundred men were hardly able to lift it.
In remembrance of this circumstance, the infant was named _Huascar_, which
signifies a cable or large rope, as the Peruvians have no word in their
language signifying a chain. To this name of Huascar was added the surname
Inca, belonging to all their kings, just as Augustus was given to all the
Roman emperors. Huana Capac had several large magazines full of gold in
various shapes, such as the figures of men and women, of sheep and animals
of all kinds, and of all the kinds of plants which are found in the
country, all accurately represented. He had also great quantities of
vestments of various kinds, and many slings, in which the fabric was mixed
with gold threads; and many bars of gold and silver made like billets of
fire wood.

Although the main object of this history is to relate the Spanish
Discovery and Conquest of Peru, it seems proper to explain the
circumstances under which they found the affairs of that empire at their
arrival; by which we shall have occasion to admire the wisdom of
Providence, in permitting that enterprize to take place at a time when
that vast country was divided into two hostile parties, which greatly
facilitated the conquest. After Huana Capac had reduced many provinces to
submission, to the extent of five hundred leagues from Cuzco, he undertook
in person to make the conquest of the kingdom of Quito, which bounded with
his empire in the north-west. Having successfully accomplished that great
enterprise, finding the country exceedingly pleasant, he continued to
reside there for a long while, leaving at Cuzco several of his children,
both sons and daughters, among whom were his eldest son Huascar Inca,
Manco Inca, Paul Inca, and several others. While at Quito, he took to wife
the daughter of the former lord of that country, by whom he had a son
named Atahualpa or Atabalipa, of whom he was very fond, and whom he left
to be educated in Quito when he returned to Cuzco. After residing for some
years in Cuzco, he made a journey back to Quito, partly because he
delighted in that country which he had subdued, and partly from affection
for his son Atahualpa, whom he loved more than all the rest of his
children. He continued to reside in Quito all the rest of his life; and at
his death, he bequeathed the kingdom of Quito to Atahualpa[33], which had
belonged to his maternal ancestors. On his death, Atahualpa secured the
affection of the army, and got possession of all the treasure which his
father had in Quito, but the far greater proportion of the treasure
remained in Cuzco, as too heavy for transportation, and accordingly fell
to Huascar, the eldest son.

Atahualpa sent ambassadors to his eldest brother Huascar, informing him of
the death of their father, and assuring him of his loyalty and obedience;
yet requesting that he might be permitted to retain the command of the
kingdom of Quito, the conquest of his father; which he alleged was beyond
the limits of the Peruvian empire, and ought not therefore to follow the
ordinary rules of primogeniture, more especially as Atahualpa was the
legitimate heir of that country in right of his mother and grandfather.
Huascar sent back for answer, that if Atahualpa would come to Cuzco and
give up the army, he should receive lands and possessions sufficient to
enable him to live according to his rank; but that he would on no account
give up Quito, a frontier province of the empire, where of course he must
keep up a body of troops for the defence of the whole. Huascar added, that
if Atahualpa refused submission to these conditions, he would march in
person against him as a declared enemy. On receiving this message,
Atahualpa consulted two of his fathers principal officers, Quiz-quiz and
Cilicuchima, brave and experienced warriors, who advised him not to wait
the invasion of his brother, but to take the field without delay and march
against him; as the army which was under his orders was sufficient to
enable him to acquire the whole provinces of the empire, and would
increase on the march by means of the provinces which intervened between
Quito and Cusco. Atahualpa followed this advice and gradually made himself
master of the country through which he marched. Huascar, on hearing of the
hostile proceedings of his brother, sent some light-armed troops against
him. The commander of these troops advanced to the province of Tumibamba
about a hundred leagues from Quito; and learning that Atahualpa had taken
the field, he sent a courier to Cuzco with notice of the state of the
affairs, and to request that he might be furnished with two thousand
officers of experience; by means of whom he could arm thirty thousand men
of the warlike province called _Cagnares_ which remained in allegiance to
Huascar. These two thousand experienced warriors were immediately sent, by
whose means, and with assistance of the curacas of Tumibamba, Chaparras,
Paltas, and Cagnares[34], in that neighbourhood, Huascars general was
enabled to collect a formidable army. Atahualpa marched against this army,
with whom he fought a battle which lasted three days, in which he was at
last defeated and made prisoner, in attempting to escape by the bridge of

While the army of Huascar was celebrating their victory with great feasts
and rejoicings, Atahualpa contrived to escape from the _tambos_ or palace
of Tumibamba in which he was confined, by digging through a very thick
wall with a bar of copper, which he procured from a woman. He returned
immediately to Quito, where he collected the remains of his defeated army,
to whom he represented that his father had changed him into a serpent, by
which means he had been enabled to escape from his prison through a small
hole; and that his father had assured him of certain victory, if they
would return along with him against the enemy. His troops were so much
encouraged by this stratagem, that they followed him with great courage,
believing themselves invincible under the protection of Huana Capac. He
again attacked the army of Huascar, which in this second battle was
entirely defeated. Such numbers were slain on both sides in these two
battles, that even to this day large quantities of human bones remain in
the places where they were fought. In pursuit of his victory, Atahualpa
marched into the provinces which adhered to his brother, which he
destroyed with fire and sword. He entirely destroyed the great city of
Tumibamba, which stood on a plain watered by three great rivers. In his
pursuing his conquests, he gave no quarter wherever he met with resistance
but granted mercy and peace to all such districts as submitted quietly to
his authority, obliging all the warriors to join his army, which by these
means, increased continually as he advanced. On arriving at Tumbez he was
desirous to take possession of the island of Puna, but as the _curaca_ of
that island defended himself courageously, Atahualpa did not think it
prudent to waste much time in the attempt, more especially as he had
intelligence of the approach of Huascar with a numerous army; for which
reason he continued his march towards Cuzco, and arrived at Caxamarca,
where he established his head-quarters. From this place he detached two of
his principal officers at the head of two or three thousand light armed
troops, with orders to reconnoitre the army of the enemy, and to bring him
word of their numbers and situation. When this party had arrived at no
great distance from the camp of the enemy, they quitted the direct road
and made a circuit among the woods and mountains, to prevent the enemy
from discovering them. Procuring intelligence that Huascar had retired to
a place at some distance from his camp, attended by seven hundred of his
principal officers and nobles, on purpose to avoid the noise and confusion
of his great army, they attacked his quarters by surprise, easily defeated
his small escort, and made him prisoner. While endeavouring to make good
their retreat to the camp of Atahualpa with their great prize, they were
surrounded on every side by the vast army of the enemy, which could easily
have exterminated them, being at least thirty to one. But the commanders
of this fortunate detachment, immediately told Huascar that they would put
him to death, if he did not instantly give orders to his army to retire:
and at the same time assured him that his brother Atahualpa had no farther
desire than to be permitted to enjoy the kingdom of Quito in peace, for
which he would do homage to him as his king and lord. Huascar, terrified
by the prospect of death, and believing their promise of restoration to
liberty and dominion, issued peremptory orders to his army to desist from
their intended attack and to return to Cuzco, which they did accordingly;
and the Atahualpan officers carried Huascar a prisoner to Caxamarca, where
they delivered him up to their master. Thus were the affairs of Peru
situated when Don Francisco Pizarro arrived in that country with the
Spaniards; which conjuncture was exceedingly favourable to his views of
conquest, of which we shall give an account in the next section, as the
great army of Huascar was entirely dispersed, and Atahualpa had dismissed
a great proportion of his troops, after this fortunate event, which had
placed his enemy in his hands.

* * * * *

_Of the Peruvian History before the arrival of the Spaniards_[35].

"Peru, like the rest of the New World, was originally possessed by small
independent tribes, differing from each other in manners, and in their
forms of rude policy. All, however, were so little civilized, that, if the
traditions concerning their mode of life, preserved among their
descendants, deserve credit, they must be classed among the most
unimproved savages of America. Strangers to every species of cultivation
or regular industry, without any fixed residence, and unacquainted with
those sentiments and obligations which form the first bonds of social
union, they are said to have roamed naked about the forests with which
their country was then covered, more like wild beasts than like men. After
they had struggled for ages with the hardships and calamities which are
inevitable in such a state, and when no circumstance seemed to indicate
the approach of any uncommon effort towards improvement, we are told that
there appeared on the banks of the lake Titicaca, a man and woman of
majestic form, and clothed in decent garments. They declared themselves to
be children of the sun, sent by their beneficent parent, who beheld with
pity the miseries of the human race, and who had commanded them to
instruct and reclaim them. At their persuasion, enforced by reverence for
the divinity in whose name they were supposed to speak, several of the
dispersed savages united together, and receiving their commands as
heavenly instructions, followed them to Cuzco where they settled, and
where they begun to lay the foundations of a city, afterwards the capital
of Peru."

"Manco Capac and Mama Ocollo, for such were the names of these
extraordinary personages, having thus collected some wandering tribes,
formed that social union which, by multiplying the desires, and uniting
the efforts of the human species, excites industry and leads to
improvement. Manco Capac instructed the men in agriculture and other
useful arts; Mama Ocollo taught the women to spin and weave. By the labour
of the one sex subsistence became less precarious; by that of the other
life was rendered more comfortable. After securing the object of first
necessity in an infant state, by providing food, raiment, and habitations
for the rude people of whom he took charge, Manco Capac turned his
attention towards introducing such laws and policy as might perpetuate
their happiness. By his institutions, the various relations in private
life were established, and the duties resulting from them prescribed with
such propriety, as gradually formed a barbarous people to decency of
manners. In public administration, the functions of persons in authority
were so precisely defined, and the subordination of those under
jurisdiction maintained with such a steady hand, that the society in which
he presided soon assumed the aspect of a regular and well-governed state."

"Thus, according to the Indian traditions, was founded the empire of the
_Incas_, or Lords of Peru. At first its extent was small; as the territory
of Manco Capac did not reach above eight leagues from Cuzco: But within
these narrow limits he exercised an uncontrolled authority. His successors,
as their dominions extended, arrogated a similar jurisdiction over the new
subjects which they acquired; the despotism of Asia was not more complete.
The Incas were not only obeyed as monarchs, but revered as divinities.
Their blood was held to be sacred, and by prohibiting intermarriages with
the people, was never contaminated by mixing with that of any other race.
The family thus separated from the rest of the nation, was distinguished
by peculiarities in dress and ornaments, which it was unlawful for others
to assume. The monarch himself appeared with ensigns of royalty reserved
for him alone; and received from his subjects marks of obsequious homage
and respect, which approached almost to adoration. But among the Peruvians,
this unbounded power of their monarchs seems to have been uniformly
accompanied with attention to the good of their subjects. It was not the
rage of conquests, if we may believe the accounts of their countrymen,
that prompted the Incas to extend their dominion, but the desire of
diffusing the blessings of civilization, and the knowledge of the arts
which they possessed, among the barbarous people whom they reduced.
During a succession of twelve monarchs, it is said that not one deviated
from this beneficent character."

"When the Spaniards first visited the coast of Peru in 1526, Huana Capac,
the twelfth monarch from the founder of the state, was seated on the
throne. He is represented as a prince distinguished not only for the
pacific virtues peculiar to the race, but eminent for his martial talents.
By his victorious arms the kingdom of Quito was subjected, a conquest of
such extent and importance as almost doubled the power of the Peruvian
empire. He was fond of residing in the capital of that valuable province
which he had added to his dominions; and notwithstanding the ancient and
fundamental law of the monarchy against polluting the royal blood by any
foreign alliance, he married the daughter of the vanquished monarch of
Quito. She bore him a son named Atahualpa, whom, on his death at Quito,
which seems to have happened about the year 1529, he appointed his
successor in that kingdom, leaving the rest of his dominions to Huascar,
his eldest son, by a mother of the royal race. Greatly as the Peruvians
revered the memory of a monarch who had reigned with greater reputation
and splendour than any of his predecessors, the destination of Huana Capac
concerning the succession appeared so repugnant to a maxim coeval with the
empire, and founded on authority deemed sacred, that it was no sooner
known at Cuzco than it excited general disgust. Encouraged by those
sentiments of his subjects, Huascar required his brother to renounce the
government of Quito, and to acknowledge him as his lawful superior. But it
had been the first care of Atahualpa to gain a large body of troops which
had accompanied his father to Quito. These were the flower of the Peruvian
warriors, to whose valour Huana Capac had been indebted for all his
victories. Atahuaipa first eluded the demand of his brother, and then
marched against him in hostile array."

"Thus the ambition of two young princes, the title of the one founded on
ancient usage, and of the other asserted by the veteran troops, involved
Peru in civil war, a calamity to which it had been hitherto a stranger,
under a succession of virtuous monarchs. In such a contest the issue was
obvious. The force of arms triumphed over the authority of laws. Atahualpa
remained victorious, and made a cruel use of his victory. Conscious of the
defect in his own title to the throne, he attempted to exterminate the
royal race, by putting to death all the children of the sun descended from
Manco Capac, whom he could seize either by force or stratagem. From a
political motive, the life of the unfortunate Huascar, who had been taken
prisoner in a battle which decided the fate of the empire, was prolonged
for some time; that, by issuing orders in his name, the usurper might more
easily establish his own authority."

"When Pizarro landed in the bay of St Matthew, in 1531, this civil war
raged between the two brothers in its greatest fury; and though the two
competitors received early accounts of the arrival of the Spaniards, they
were so intent upon the operations of a war which they deemed more
interesting, that they gave no attention to the motions of an enemy too
inconsiderable in number to excite any great alarm, and to whom it would
be easy, as they imagined, to give a check when more at leisure. By this
fortunate coincidence of events, of which he could have no foresight, and
of which he remained long ignorant from its defective mode of intercourse
with the people of the country, Pizarro was permitted to advance
unmolested into the centre of a great empire, before any effort of its
power was exerted to stop his career. During their progress, the Spaniards
acquired some imperfect knowledge of the struggle between the two
contending factions; and the first complete information respecting it was
received from messengers sent by Huascar to Pizarro, to solicit his aid
against Atahualpa, whom he represented as a rebel and an usurper."

* * * * *

Manco Capac, the first Inca of the Peruvians, is said to have reigned
about the middle of the twelfth century, as the traditionary accounts
attribute a period of about 400 years between the commencement of his
reign and the decease of Huana Capac in 1529, which would place the origin
of the monarchy about the year 1129, allowing an average of 30 years to
each of 13 successive reigns. The traditions of such ancient matters among
an ignorant people are little to be depended on; and even admitting the
series of kings to be right as to number, the ordinary average of _twenty_
years to each of the _thirteen_ successive reigns would only give 260
years for the duration of the monarchy, and would carry back the
commencement of the reign of Manco Capac only to the year 1269. The series
of these kings, as given by various Spanish writers, according to the
traditions of the Peruvians, is as follows:

1. Manco Capac. 2. Sinchi Roca. 3. Lloque Yupanqui. 4. Mayta Capac. 5.
Capac Yupanqui. 6. Inca Roca. 7. Yahuar Huacac. 8. Inca Roca, likewise
named Viracocha. 9. Pachacutec[36]. 10. Yupanqui. 11. Tupac Yupanqui. 12.
Huana Capac. 13. Huascar, or Inti-cusi-Hualpa. 14. Atahualpa. 15. Manco
Capac the Second, crowned at Cuzco by permission of Pizarro; afterwards
revolted and retired to the mountains. 16. Sayri Tupac; who resigned the
nominal sovereignty of Peru to Philip II. He died a Christian, and left
one daughter who married a Spaniard named Onez de Loyola, and from whom
are descended the marquisses of Orepesa and Alcanises.

* * * * *

As the empire of Peru was made up of many barbarous tribes, its native
inhabitants spoke many languages or dialects, which were only understood
in their own particular districts. The language of the ruling people or
tribe to which the royal family belonged, called the _Quichua_, was solely
used at court, and we have already seen that the sons of all the chiefs or
curacas of the empire were ordered to be educated at Cuzco, that they
might be all able to converse with the sovereign. In this language the
sounds of _b, d, f, g_, and _r_, are said to have been wanting; and yet
that of the _r_ occurs in the names of several of their kings. Garcilasso
says that this letter had a guttural sound, perhaps resembling the burr,
or _parler gras_ of the French: And it is alleged that this language of a
comparatively barbarous people was nearly as copious and as artificial as
the Greek. The following specimens are given in the Modern Geography, III.
585, to which are added two examples of what are called Peruvian poetry,
from Garcilasso de la Vega, p. 50. The nouns in this language are declined
by altering the terminations thus; _Runa_, a man; _Runap_, of a man;
_Runapac_, to a man, &c. The verbs have also moods and tenses, the
terminations often extending to a great length.

1. Huc 5. Chumpi, picheca. 9. Yscon.
2. Yscay 6. Zocta. 10. Chunca.
3. Quimza 7. Canchis. 100. Pachac.
4. Tahua 8. Puzac. 1000. Huaranca.

The Andes....Anti A Hog.........Cuchi
The Arm......Ricra A House.......Huaci
Bad..........Mana alli[A] A Husband.....Coza
The Beard....Zunca Iron..........Quellay
Beauty.......Zumay A King........Capac, Inca
The Belly....Vicza A Lake........Cocha
A Brother....Huauquey A Lance.......Chuqui
A Canoe......Huampu Land..........Allpa
To Die.......Huauny, pitini Little........Huchuy
A Dog........Alles Love..........Cuyay, munay
To Drink.....Upiana A man.........Runa
The Ears.....Rinri The Moon......Quilla
Eared, or having Mother........Mama
great ears...Ringrim A Mountain....Puna, acha
To Eat.......Micuni The Mouth.....Simi
An Emerald...Umina No............Maria
The Eye......Naui The Nose......Cenca
A Family.....Ayllu A Queen, or
Father.......Mayu Princess...Coya
Fire.........Nina A Sacrifice...Arpay
Many fires...Ninanina Sand..........Aco
A Fish.......Challhua The Sea.......Atun cocha[B]
Flesh........Aycha .......Mama cocha[C]
A Foot.......Chaqui A Ship........Huampu[D]
A Friend.....Cocho Silver........Collqui
Good.........Alli A Sister......Panay
Gold.........Cori Snow..........Riti
Gold dust....Chichi cori A Son.........Churi
Great........Hatun A Stone.......Rumi
A Hatchet....Avri, champi The Sun.......Inti
The Hair.....Caspa Water.........Unu, yaco
The Hand.....Maqui Woman.........Huami
The Head.....Uma Yes...........Y

_Specimen of Peruvian poetry_.

_Caylla Llapi_ To the Song
_Pununqui_ I will Sleep,
_Chaupitua_ At Midnight
_Samusac_ I will come.

[A] Not good.

[B] Great Lake.

[C] Mother Lake.

[D] Huampu likewise signifies a canoe, and probably a ship might be named
Atun huampu, a great canoe.--E.

[1] In a note of the French edition of 1742, it is said that, in the folio
edition of Zarate printed at Seville in 1677, Luque was called the
father of Almagro, and that no mention is made of that ecclesiastic
having taken any part in the expedition. Robertson, in his History of
America, II. 273, says that Pizarro was the natural son of a gentleman
of honourable family by a low woman, and that his education was so
entirely neglected that he could neither read nor write. He adds that,
after serving some years in Italy, he embarked for America, where he
greatly distinguished himself. In our last chapter, Diaz makes
frequent mention of Pizarro as serving with reputation under Cortes,
in the early part of the expedition to Mexico; but gives no account of
his quitting the service of Cortes; to whom he was probably somehow
related, as the mother of Cortes was named Catalina Pizarro Altamirano.
Almagro, according to Robertson, was a foundling, and bred like
Pizarro in the army. Luque acted as priest and schoolmaster at Panama,
and had amassed considerable riches.--E.

[2] Named Pedrarias by Robertson.--E.

[3] Chinchama, by the map in Zarate is that part of the western coast of
Tierra Firma or Darien, opposite the Isla del Rey. The poor province
of Peru, beyond or to the southwards of Cinchama, is that now called
Biruquete; and the Pueblo quemada, or Burnt People, must be looked for
in the province of Novita, perhaps Nounamas, immediately to the south
of which is the river of St Juan.--E.

[4] Tacamez, otherwise called the district of _Esmeraldas_, or of emeralds,
is in the kingdom of Quito near the equinoctial line.--E.

[5] Instead of _twelve_, the text only names _eight_ of the brave
associates of Pizarro.--E.

[6] Morope, in lat. 6 deg. 35', in the district of Sana, is in the situation
of the place mentioned in the text.--E.

[7] This river, otherwise called Amatape, runs into the bay of Payta, in
lat. 5 deg. 10' south.--E.

[8] Under the name of Peruvian sheep, five species of the Camel genus are
known to naturalists, the Glama or Llama, Guanaco, Chillihueque,
Vicugna, and Pacos. The three former were used as animals of burthen
by the native Peruvians, and domesticated, the two latter, especially
the Vicugna, are valuable for the firmness of their fleeces. The three
larger species carry loads of about a hundred pounds weight, the other
two, when domesticated, may be made to carry smaller burdens of from

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