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The Project Gutenberg EBook of A Brief Account of the Destruction of the
Indies, by Bartolome de las Casas

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever.  You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at

Title: A Brief Account of the Destruction of the Indies
       Or, a faithful NARRATIVE OF THE Horrid and Unexampled
       Massacres, Butcheries, and all manner of Cruelties, that
       Hell and Malice could invent, committed by the Popish
       _Spanish_ Party on the inhabitants of _West-India_, TOGETHER
       With the Devastations of several Kingdoms in _America_ by
       Fire and Sword, for the space of Forty and Two Years, from
       the time of its first Discovery by them.

Author: Bartolome de las Casas

Release Date: January 9, 2007 [EBook #20321]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


[Preparer's notes:
  1) Though the original title does not appear in this version, this
     is (apart from the preface) a translation of:
    "Brevisima relacion de la destrucc�on de las Indias", by
    Bartolome de las Casas, originally published in Seville in 1552.
  2) The original archaic spelling and punctuation has been retained]

                   Truly Display'd in its
                       Bloody Colours:
                       Or, a faithful
                          OF THE
Horrid and Unexampled Massacres, Butcheries, and all manner of
Cruelties, that Hell and Malice could invent, committed by the Popish
_Spanish_ Party on the inhabitants of _West-India_
With the Devastations of several Kingdoms in _America_ by Fire and
Sword, for the space of Forty and Two Years, from the time of its first
Discovery by them.

_Composed first in_ Spanish _by_ Bartholomew de las Casas, _a Bishop there,
and Eye-Witness of most of these Barbarous Cruelties; afterward Translated
by him into_ Latin, _then by other hands, into_ High-Dutch, Low-Dutch,
French, _and now Taught to Speak Modern English_.
_London,_ Printed for _R. Hewson_ at the _Crown in Cornhil,_
          near the _Stocks-Market._  1689.

                   OF THIS NARRATIVE
                       By way of
                         TO THE

_The Reverend Author of this Compendious Summary was_ Bartholomaeus de las
Casas _alias_ Casaus, _a Pious and Religeous person, (as appears by his
zealous Transports in this Narrative for promotion of the Christian
Faith) elevated from a Frier of the_ Dominican _Order to sit in the
Episcopal Chair, who was frequently importuned by Good and Learned Men,
particularly Historians, to Publish this Summary, who so prevailed with
him, that he Collected out of that copious History which might and
ought to be written on this subject, the contents of this concise
Treatise with intention to display unto the World the Enormities,_ &c.
_the_ Spaniards _committed in_ America _during their residence there, to
their eternal ignominy; and for the author finding that no Admonitions
or Reprehensions, how mild soever could operate upon or sink into the
rocky-hearted Tyrants in those Occidental parts; he therefore took up a
firm resolution, being then about 50 years of age (as he himself
declares) to run the Hazards and Dangers by Sea, and the Risque of a
long voyage into_ Spain _there to acquaint and Certifie the most
Illustrious Prince_ Phillip _the Son and Heir of his Imperial Majesty_
Charles _the Fifth of Blessed Memory, with the Horrid crimes,_ &c.
_perpetrated in those countries, part whereof he had seen, and part
heard from such as boasted of their Wickedness. Whereupon his_
Caeserean _Majesty moved with a tender and Christian compassion
towards these Inhabitants of the Countries of_ America, _languishing
for want of redress, he called a Council at_ Valedolid, _Anno Dom.
1542. consisting of Learned and Able Men,  in order to the reformation
of the_ West-Indian _government, and took such a course, that from that
time their Tyranny and cruelty against those_ Barbarians _was somewhat
repressed, and those Nations in some measure delivered from that
intolerable and more then_ Aegyptian _Bondage, or at least the_
Spaniards _ill usage and treatment of the_ Americans _was alleviated
and abated.  This Book mostly_ Historical, _part_ Typographical, _was
Published first by the Author in_ Spanish _at_ Sevil, _after that
Translated into_ Latin _by himself; and in process of time into_ High
Dutch, Low Dutch, French _and now_ English; _which is the Sixth
Language it has been taught to speak, that anyone of what Nation soever
might in this Narrative contemplate and see as in a mirror the dismal
and pernitious fruits, that lacquey and attend unlimited and close
fisted Avarice, and thereby Learn to abhor and detest it,_ Cane pejus &
angue: _it being the predominant and chiefest motive to the comission
of such inexpressible Outrages, as here in part are faintly, not fully
represented.  Which sin the Pagan_ Indians _themselves did exprobate in
the_ Spaniards _with all Detestation, Ignominy and Disgrace: for when
they had taken some of them Prisoners (which was rarely) they bound
them hand and foot, laid them on the ground, and then pouring melted
Gold down their Throats, cried out and called to them aloud in
derision,_ yield, throw up thy Gold O Christian!  Vomit and spew out
the Mettal which hath so inqinated and invenom'd both Body and Soul,
that hath stain'd and infected they mind with desires and contrivances,
and thy hands with Commission of such matchless Enormities.  _I will
then shut up all this, being but an Extract of what is in the Prefatory
part of the Original.  I earnestly beg and desire all Men to be
perswaded, that this summary was not published upon any private Design,
sinister ends or affection in favor or prejudice of any particular
Nation; but for the publick Emolument and Advantage of all true
Christians and moral Men throughout the whole World._



                          THE CRUELTIES
                              OF THE
                          Committed in

America was discovered and found out _Ann. Dom._ 1492, and the Year
insuing inhabited by the _Spaniards_, and afterward a multitude of them
travelled thither from _Spain_ for the space of Nine and Forty Years.
Their first attempt was on the _Spanish_ Island, which indeed is a most
fertile soil, and at present in great reputation for its Spaciousness
and Length, containing in Circumference Six Hundred Miles: Nay it is on
all sides surrounded with an almost innumerable number of Islands,
which we found so well peopled with Natives and Forreigners, that there
is scarce any Region in the Universe fortified with so many
Inhabitants: But the main Land or Continent, distant from this Island
Two Hundred and Fifty Miles and upwards, extends it self above Ten
Thousand Miles in Length near the sea-shore, which Lands are some of
them already discover'd, and more may be found out in process of time:
And such a  multitude of People inhabits these Countries, that it seems
as if the Omnipotent God has Assembled and Convocated the major part of
Mankind in this part of the World.

Now this infinite multitude of Men are by the Creation of God
innocently simple, altogether void of and averse to all manner of
Craft, Subtlety and Malice, and most Obedient and Loyal Subjects to
their Native Sovereigns; and behave themselves very patiently,
sumissively and quietly towards the _Spaniards_, to whom they are
subservient and subject; so that finally they live without the least
thirst after revenge, laying aside all litigiousness, Commotion and

This is a most tender and effeminate people, and so imbecile and
unequal-balanced temper, that they are altogether incapable of hard
labour, and in few years, by one Distemper or other soon expire, so
that the very issue of Lords and Princes, who among us live with great
affluence, and fard deliciously, are not more effminate and tender than
the Children of their Husbandmen or Labourers: This Nation is very
Necessitous and Indigent, Masters of very slender Possessions, and
consequently, neither Haughty, nor Ambitious.  They are parsimonious in
their Diet, as the Holy Fathers were in their frugal life in the
Desert, known by the name of _Eremites_.  They go naked, having no
other Covering but what conceals their Pudends from publick sight.  An
hairy Plad, or loose Coat, about an Ell, or a  coarse woven Cloth at
most Two Ells long serves them for the warmest Winter Garment.  They
lye on a coarse Rug or Matt, and those that have the most plentiful
Estate or Fortunes, the better sort, use Net-work, knotted at the four
corners in lieu of Beds, which the Inhabitants of the Island of
_Hispaniola_, in their own proper Idiom, term _Hammacks_.  The Men are
pregnant and docible. The natives tractable, and capable of Morality or
Goodness, very apt to receive the instill'd principles of Catholick
Religion; nor are they averse to Civility and good Manners, being not
so much discompos'd by variety of Obstructions, as the rest of Mankind;
insomuch, that having suckt in (if I may so express my self) the the
very first Rudiments of the Christian Faith, they are so transported
with Zeal and Furvor in the exercise of Ecclesiastical Sacraments, and
Divine Service,  that the very Religioso's themselves, stand in need of
the greatest and most signal patience to undergo such extream
Transports.  And to conclude, I my self have heard the _Spaniards_
themselves (who dare not assume the Confidence to deny the good Nature
praedominant in them) declare, that there was nothing wanting in them
for the acquisition of Eternal Beatitude, but the sole Knowledge and
Understanding of the Deity.

The _Spaniards_ first assaulted the innocent Sheep, so qualified by the
Almighty, as is premention'd, like most cruel Tygers, Wolves and Lions
hunger-starv'd, studying nothing, for the space of Forty Years, after
their first landing, but the Massacre of these Wretches, whom they have
so inhumanely and barbarously butcher'd and harass'd with several kinds
of Torments, never before known, or heard (of which you shall have some
account in the following Discourse) that of Three Millions of Persons,
which lived in _Hispaniola_ itself, there is at present but the
inconsiderable remnant of scarce Three Hundred.  Nay the Isle of
_Cuba_,  which extends as far, as _Valledolid_ in _Spain_ is distant
from _Rome_, lies now uncultivated, like a Desert, and intomb'd in its
own Ruins.  You may also find the Isles of St. _John_, and _Jamaica_,
both large and fruitful places, unpeopled and desolate.  The _Lucayan_
Islands on the North Side, adjacent to _Hispaniola_ and _Cuba_, which
are Sixty in number, or thereabout, together with with those, vulgarly
known by the name of the Gigantic Isles, and others, the most infertile
whereof, exceeds the Royal Garden of _Sevil_ in fruitfulness, a most
Healthful and pleasant Climat, is now laid waste and uninhabited; and
whereas, when the _Spaniards_ first arriv'd here, about Five Hundred
Thousand Men dwelt in it, they are now cut off, some by slaughter, and
others ravished away by Force and Violence, to work in the Mines of
_Hispanioloa,_ which was destitute of Native Inhabitants: For a certain
Vessel, sailing to this Isle, to the end, that the Harvest being over
(some good Christian, moved with Piety and Pity, undertook this
dangerous Voyage, to convert Souls to Christianity) the remaining
gleanings might be gathered up, there were only found Eleven Persons,
which I saw with my own Eyes.  There are other Islands Thirty in
number, and upward bordering upon the Isle of St. _John_, totally
unpeopled; all which are above Two Thousand miles in Lenght, and yet
remain without Inhabitants, Native, or People.

As to the firm land, we are certainly satisfied, and assur'd, that the
_Spaniards_ by their barbarous and execrable Actions have absolutely
depopulated Ten Kingdoms, of greater extent than all _Spain_, together
with the Kingdoms of _Arragon_ and _Portugal_, that is to say, above
One Thousand Miles, which now lye wast and desolate, and are absolutely
ruined, when as formerly no other Country whatsoever was more populous.
Nay we dare boldly affirm, that during the Forty Years space, wherein
they exercised their sanguinary and detestable Tyranny in these
Regions, above Twelve Millions (computing Men, Women, and Children)
have undeservedly perished; nor do I conceive that I should deviate
from the Truth by saying that above Fifty Millions in all paid their
last Debt to Nature.

Those that arriv'd at these Islands from the remotest parts of _Spain_,
and who pride themselves in the Name of Christians, steer'd Two courses
principally, in order to the Extirpation, and Exterminating of this
People from the face of the Earth.  The first whereof was raising an
unjust, sanguinolent, cruel War.  The other, by putting them to death,
who hitherto, thirsted after their Liberty, or design'd (which the most
Potent, Strenuous and Magnanimous Spirits intended) to recover their
pristin Freedom, and shake off the Shackles of so injurious a
Captivity:  For they being taken off in War, none but Women and
Children were permitted to enjoy the benefit of that Country-Air, in
whom they did in succeeding times lay such a heavy Yoak, that the very
Brutes were more happy than they:  To which Two Species of Tyranny as
subalternate things to the Genus, the other innumerable Courses they
took to extirpate and make this a desolate People, may be reduced and

Now the ultimate end and scope that incited the _Spaniards_ to endeavor
the Extirptaion and Desolation of this People, was Gold only; that
thereby growing opulent in a short time, they might arrive at once at
such Degrees and Dignities, as were no wayes consistent with their

Finally, in one word, their Ambition and Avarice, than which the heart
of Man never entertained greater, and the vast Wealth of those Regions;
the Humility and Patience of the Inhabitants (which made their approach
to these Lands more facil and easie) did much promote the business:
Whom they so despicably contemned, that they treated them (I speak of
things which I was an Eye Witness of, without the least fallacy) not as
Beasts, which I cordially wished they would, but as the most abject
dung and filth of the Earth; and so sollicitous they were of their Life
and Soul, that the above-mentioned number of People died without
understanding the true Faith or Sacraments.  And this also is as really
true as the praecendent Narration (which the very Tyrants and cruel
Murderers cannot deny without the stigma of a lye) that the _Spaniards_
never received any injury from the _Indians_, but that they rather
reverenced them as Persons descended from Heaven, until that they were
compelled to take up Arms, provoked thereunto by repeated Injuries,
violent Torments, and injust Butcheries.


Of the Island HISPANIOLA.

In this Isle, which, as we have said, the _Spaniards_ first attempted,
the bloody slaughter and destruction of Men first began: for they
violently forced away  Women and Children to make them Slaves, and
ill-treated them, consuming and wasting their Food, which they had
purchased with great sweat, toil, and yet remained dissatisfied too,
which every one according to his strength and ability, and that was
very inconsiderable (for they provided no other Food than what was
absolutely necessary to support Nature without superfluity, freely
bestow'd on them, and one individual _Spaniard_ consumed more Victuals
in one day, than would serve to maintain Three Families a Month, every
one consisting of Ten Persons.  Now being oppressed by such evil usage,
and afflicted with such greate Torments and violent Entertainment they
began to understand that such Men as those had not their Mission from
Heaven; and therefore some of them conceal'd their Provisions and
others to their Wives and Children in lurking holes, but some, to avoid
the obdurate and dreadful temper of such a Nation, sought their Refuge
on the craggy tops of Mountains; for the _Spaniards_ did not only
entertain them with Cuffs, Blows, and wicked Cudgelling, but laid
violent hands also on the Governours of Cities; and this arriv'd at
length to that height of Temerity and Impudence, that a certain Captain
was so audacious as abuse the Consort of the most puissant King of the
whole Isle.  From which time they began to consider by what wayes and
means they might expel the _Spaniards_ out of their Countrey, and
immediately took up Arms.  But, good God, what Arms, do you imagin?
Namely such, both Offensive and Defensive, as resemble Reeds wherewith
Boys sport with one another, more than Manly Arms and Weapons.

Which the _Spaniards_ no sooner perceived, but they, mounted on
generous Steeds, well weapon'd with Lances and Swords, begin to
exercise their bloody Butcheries and Strategems, and overrunning their
Cities and Towns, spar'd no Age, or Sex, nay not so much as Women with
Child, but ripping up their Bellies, tore them alive in pieces.  They
laid Wagers among themselves, who should with a Sword at one blow cut,
or divide a Man in two; or which of them should decollate or behead a
Man, with the greatest dexterity; nay farther, which should sheath his
Sword in the Bowels of a Man with the quickest dispatch and expedition.

They snatcht young Babes from the Mothers Breasts, and then dasht out
the brains of those innocents against the Rocks; others they cast into
Rivers scoffing and jeering them, and call'd upon their Bodies when
falling with derision, the true testimony of their Cruelty, to come to
them, and inhumanely exposing others to their Merciless Swords,
together with the Mothers that gave them Life.

They erected certain Gibbets, large, but low made, so that their feet
almost reacht the ground, every one of which was so order'd as to bear
Thirteen Persons in Honour and Reverence (as they said blasphemously)
of our Redeemer and his Twelve Apostles, under which they made a Fire
to burn them to Ashes whilst hanging on them: But those they intended
to preserve alive, they dismiss'd, their Hands half cut, and still
hanging by the Skin, to carry their Letters missive to those that fly
from us and ly sculking on the Mountains, as an exprobation of their

The Lords and Persons of Noble Extract were usually expos'd to this
kind of Death; they order'd Gridirons to be placed and supported with
wooden Forks, and putting a small Fire under them, these miserable
Wretches by degrees and with loud Shreiks and exquisite Torments, at
last Expir'd.

I once saw Four or Five of their most Powerful Lords laid on these
Gridirons, and thereon roasted, and not far off, Two or Three more
over-spread with the same Commodity, Man's Flesh; but the shril
Clamours which were heard there being offensive to the Captain, by
hindring his Repose, he commanded them to be strangled with a Halter.
The Executioner (whose Name and Parents at _Sevil_ are not unknown to
me) prohibited the doing of it; but stopt Gags into their Mouths to
prevent the hearing of the noise (he himself making the Fire) till that
they dyed, when they had been roasted as long as he thought convenient.
I was an Eye-Witness of these and and innumerable Number of other
Cruelties: And because all Men, who could lay hold of the opportunity,
sought out lurking holes in the Mountains, to avoid as dangerous Rocks
so Brutish and Barbarous a People, Strangers to all Goodness, and the
Extirpaters and Adversaries of Men, they bred up such fierce hunting
Dogs as would devour an _Indian_ like a Hog, at first sight in less
than a moment: Now such kind of Slaughters and Cruelties as these were
committed by the Curs, and if at any time it hapned, (which was rarely)
that the _Indians_ irritated upon a just account destroy'd or took away
the Life of any _Spaniard,_ they promulgated and proclaim'd this Law
among them, that One Hundred _Indians_ should dye for every individual
_Spaniard_ that should be slain.

_Of the Kingdoms contained in_ Hispaniola.

This Isle of _Hispaniola_ was made up of Six of their greatest
Kingdoms, and as many most Puissant Kings, to whose Empire almost all
the other Lords, whose Number was infinite, did pay their Allegiance.
One of these Kingdoms was called _Magua,_ signifying a Campaign or open
Country; which is very observable, if any place in the Universe
deserves taking notice of, and memorable for the pleasantness of its
Situation; for it is extended from South to North Eighty Miles, in
breadth Five, Eight, and in some parts Ten Miles in length; and is on
all sides inclosed with the highest Mountains; above Thirty Thousand
Rivers, and Rivulets water her Coasts, Twelve of which prodigious
Number do not yield in all in magnitude to those famous Rivers, the
_Eber, Duer,_ and _Guadalquivir;_ and all those Rivers which have their
Source or Spring from the Mountains lying Westerly, the number whereof
is Twenty Thousand) are very rich in Mines of Gold; on which Mountain
lies the Province of rich Mines, whence the exquisite Gold of Twenty
Four Caracts weight, takes denomination.  The King and Lord of this
Kingdom was named _Guarionex,_ who governed within the Compass of his
Dominions so many Vassals and Potent Lords, that every one of them was
able to bring into the Field Sixteen Thousand Soldiers for the service
of _Guarionex_ their Supream Lord and Soverain, when summoned
thereunto.  Some of which I was acquainted with. This was a most
Obedient Prince, endued with great Courage and Morality, naturally of a
Pacifick Temper, and most devoted to the service of the _Castilian_
Kings.  This King commanded and ordered his Subjects, that every one of
those Lords under his Jurisdiction, should present him with a Bell full
of Gold; but in succeeding times, being unable to perform it, they were
commanded to cut it in two, and fill one part therewith, for the
Inhabitants of this Isle were altogether inexperienced, and unskilful
in Mine-works, and the digging Gold out of them.  This _Caiu_ proferred
his Service to the King of _Castile,_ on this Condition, that he would
take care, that those Lands should be cultivated and manur'd, wherein,
during the reign of _Isabella,_ Queen of _Castile,_ the _Spaniards_
first set footing and fixed their Residence, extending in length even
to _Santo Domingo,_ the space of Fifty Miles.  For he declar'd (nor was
it a Fallacie, but an absolute Truth,) that his Subjects understood not
the practical use of digging in Golden Mines.  To which promises he had
readily and voluntarily condescended, to my own certain knowledge, and
so by this means, the King would have received the Annual Revenue of
Three Millions of _Spanish_ Crowns, and upward, there being at that
very time in that Island Fifty Cities more ample and spacious than
_Sevil_ it self in _Spain_.

But what returns by way of Remuneration and Reward did they make this
so Clement and Benign Monarch, can you imagine, no other but this?
They put the greatest Indignity upon him imaginable in the person of
his Consort who was violated by a _Spanish_ Captain altogether unworthy
of the Name of Christian.  He might indeed probably expect to meet with
a convenient time and opportunity of revenging this Ingominy so
unjuriously thrown upon him by preparing Military Forces to attaque
him, but he rather chose to abscond in the Province _De los Ciquayos_
(wherein a Puissant Vassal and subject of his Ruled) devested of his
Estate and Kingdom, and there live and dye an exile.  But the
_Spaniards_ receiving certain information, that he had absented
himself, connived no longer at his Concealment but raised War against
him, who had received them with so great humanity and kindness, and
having first laid waste and desolate the whole Region, at last found,
and took him Prisoner, who being bound in Fetters was convey'd on board
of a ship in order to his transfretation to _Castile,_ as a Captive:
but the Vessel perished in the Voyage, wherewith many _Spaniards_ were
also lost, as well as a great weight of Gold, among which there was a
prodigious Ingot of Gold, resembling a large Loaf of Bread, weighing
3600 Crowns; Thus it pleased God to revenge their enormous impieties.

A Second Kingdom was named _Marien,_ where there is to this day a
Haven, upon the utmost Borders of the Plain or open Countrey toward the
North, more fertil and large than the kingdom of _Portugal;_ and really
deserving constant and frequent Inahbitants: For it abounds with
Mountains, and is rich in Mines of Gold and _Orichalcum,_ a kind of
Copper Mettal mixt with Gold; The Kings name of this place was
_Guacanagari,_ who had many powerful Lords (some whereof were not
unknown to me) under his subjection.  The first that landed in this
Kingdom when he discovered _America_ was an Admiral well stricken in
years, who had so hospitable and kind a reception from the aforesaid
_Gracanagari,_ as well as all those _Spaniards_ that accompanied him in
that Voyage, giving them all imaginable help and assisstance (for the
admiral's vessel was sunk on their Coasts) that I heard it from his own
mouth, he could not possibly have been entertained with greater
Caresses and Civilities from his own parents in his own Native Country.
But this King being forced to fly to avoid the _Spanish_ slaughter and
Cruelty, deprived of all he was Master of, died in the Mountains; and
all the rest of the Potentates and Nobles, his subjects, perished in
that servitude and Vassalage; as you shall find in this following

The Third Kingdom was distinguished by the Appellation of _Maquana,_
another admirable, healthful and fruitful Region, where at present the
most refined sugar of the Island is made. _Caonabo_ then reigned there,
who surmounted all the rest in Power, State, and the splendid
Ceremonies of His Government.  This King beyond all expectation was
surpriz'd in his own Palace, by the great subtilty and industry of the
_Spaniards,_ and after carried on board in order to his transportation
to _Castile,_ but there being at that time six Ships Riding in the
Haven, and ready to set Sail such an impetuous storm suddenly arose,
that they as well as the Passengers and Ships Crew were all lost,
together with King _Canabao_ loaded with Irons; by which judgement the
Almighty declared that this was as unjust and impious an Act as any of
the former.  This Kind had three or four Brothers then Living, Men of
strength and Valour, who being highly incensed at the Captivity of
their King and Brother, to which he was injuriously reduc'd, having
also intelligence of the Devastations and Butcheries committed by the
_Spaniards_ in other Regions, and not long after hearing of their
Brothers death, took up Arms to revenge themselves of the Enemy, whom
the _Spaniards_ met with, and certain party of Horse (which proved very
offensive to the _Indians_) made such havoc and slaughter among them,
that the half of this Kingdom was laid waste and depopulated.

_Xaraqua_ is the Fourth Kingdom, and as it were the Centre and Middle
of the whole Island, and is not to be equalled for fluency of Speech
and politeness of Idiom or Dialect by any Inhabitants of the other
Kingdoms, and in Policy and Morality transcends them all.  Herein the
Lords and Peers abounded, and the very Populace excelled in in stature
and habit of Body: Their King was _Behechio_ by name and who had a
Sister called _Anacaona,_ and both the Brother as well as Sister had
loaded the _Spaniards_ with Benefits and singular acts of Civility, and
by delivering them from the evident and apparent danger of Death, did
signal services to the _Castilian_ Kings.  _Behechio_ dying the supreme
power of the Kingdom fell to _Anacaona:_ But it hapned one day, that
the Governour of an Island, attended by 60 Horse, and 30 Foot (now the
Cavalry was sufficiently able to unpeople not only the Isle, but also
the whole Continent) he summoned about 300 Dynasta's, or Noblemen to
appear before him, and commanded the most powerful of them, being first
crouded into a Thatcht Barn or Hovel, to be exposed to the fury of the
merciless Fire, and the rest to be pierced with Lances, and run through
with the point of the Sword, by a multitude of Men: And _Anacaona_ her
self who (as we said before,) sway'd the Imperial Scepter, to her
greater honor was hanged on a Gibbet. And if it fell out that any
person instigated by Compassion or Covetousness, did entertain any
_Indian_ Boys and mount them on Horses, to prevent their Murder,
another was appointed to follow them, who ran them through the back or
in the hinder parts, and if they chanced to escape Death, and fall to
the ground, they immediately cut off his Legs; and when any of those
_Indians,_ that survived these Barbarous Massacres, betook themselves
to an Isle eight miles distant, to escape their Butcheries, they were
then committed to servitude during Life.

The Fifth Kingdom was _Hiquey,_ over whom Queen _Hiquanama,_ a
superannuated Princess, whome the _Spaniards_ Crucified, did preside
and Govern.  The number of those I saw here burnt, and dismembered, and
rackt with various Torments, as well as others, the poor Remnants of
such matchless Villanies, who surviving were enslaved, is infinite.
But because so much might be said concerning the Assassinations and
Depopulating of these people, as cannot without great difficulty be
published in Writing (nor do I conceive that one fragile part of 1000
that is here contained can be fully displayed) I will only add one
remark more of the prementioned Wars, in lieu of a Corollary or
Conclusion, and aver upon my Conscience, that notwithstanding all the
above-named Injustice, profligate Enormities and other Crimes which I
omit, (tho sufficiently known to me) the _Indians_ did not, nor was it
in their power to give any greater occasion for the Commission of them,
than Pious Religioso's Living in a well regulated Monastic Life did
afford for any Sacrilegeous Villains to deprive them of their Goods and
Life at the same time, or why they who by flight avoided death should
be detain'd in perpetual, not to be ransom'd Captivity and Slavery.  I
adde farther, that I really believe, and am satisfied by certain
undeniable conjectures, that at the very juncture of time, when all
these outrages were commited in this Isle, the _Indians_ were not so
much guilty of one single mortal sin of Commission against the
_Spaniards_, that might deserve from any Man revenge or require
satisfaction.  And as for those sins, the punishment whereof God hath
reserved to himself, as the immoderate desire of Revenge, Hatred, Envy
or inward rancor of Spirit, to which they might be transported against
such Capital Enemies as the _Spaniards_ were, I judge that very few of
them can justly be accused of them; for their impetuosity and vigor I
speak experimentally, was inferior to that of Children of ten or twelve
years of age: and this I can assure you, that the _Indians_ had ever a
just cause of raising War against the _Spaniards_, and the _Spaniards_
on the contrary never raised a just was against them, but what was more
injurious and groundless then any undertaken by the worst of Tyrants.
All which I affirm of all their other Transactions and passages in

The Warlike Engagements being over, and the Inhabitants all swept away,
they divided among themselves the Young Men, Women, and Children
reserved promiscuously for that purpose, one obtained thirty, another
forty, to this Man one hundred were disposed, to the other two hundred,
and the more one was in favor with the domineering Tyrant (which they
styled Governor) the more he became Master of, upon this pretence, and
with this Proviso, that he should see them instructed in the Catholick
Religion, when as they themselves to whom they were committed to be
taught, and the care of their Souls instructed them were, for the major
part Idiots, Cruel, Avaritious, infected and stained with all sorts of
Vices.  And this was the great care they had of them, they sent the
Males to the Mines to dig and bring away the Gold, which is an
intollerable labor; but the Women they made use of to Manure and Till
the ground, which is a toil most irksome even to Men of the strongest
and most robust constitutions, allowing them no other food but Herbage,
and such kind of unsubstantial nutriment, so that the Nursing Womens
Milk was exsiccated and so dryed up, that the young Infants lately
brought forth, all perished, and females being separated from and
debarred cohabitation with Men, there was no Prolification or raising
up issue among them.  The Men died in Mines, hunger starved and
oppressed with labor, and the Women perished in the Fields, harrassed
and broken with the like Evils and Calamities: Thus an infinite number
of Inhabitants that formerly peopled this Island were exterminated and
dwindled away to nothing by such Consumptions.  They were compelled to
carry burthens of eighty or one hundred pound weight, and that an
hundred or two hundred miles compleat: and the _Spaniards_ were born by
them on the Shoulders in a pensil Vehicle or Carriage, or kind of Beds
made of Net-work by the _Indians_; for in Truth they made use of them
as Beasts to carry the burthens and cumbersom baggage of their
journeys, insomuch that it frequently happened, that the Shoulders and
Backs of the _Indians_ were deeply marked with their scourges and
stripes, just as they used to serve a tired Jade, accustomed to
burthens.  And as to those slashes with whips, blows with staves, cuffs
and boxes, maledictions and curses, with a Thousand of such kind of
Torments they suffered during the fatigue of their laborious journeys
it would require a long tract of time, and many Reams of Paper to
describe them, and when all were done would only create Horror and
Consternation in the Reader.

But here is is observable, that the desolation of these Isles and
Provinces took beginning since the decease of the most Serene Queen
_Isabella_, about the year 1504, for before that time very few of the
Provinces situated in that Island were oppressed or spoiled with unjust
Wars, or violated with general devastation as after they were, and most
if not all these things were concealed and masked from the Queens
knowledge (whom I hope God hath crowned with Eternal Glory) for she was
transported with fervent and wonderful zeal, nay, almost Divine desires
for the Salvation and preservation of these people, which things so
exemplary as these we having seen with our eyes, and felt with our
hands, cannot easily be forgotten.

Take this also for a general Rule, that the _Spaniards_ upon what
_American_ Coasts soever they arrived, exercised the same Cruelties,
Slaughters, Tyrannies and detestable Oppressions on the most innocent
_Indian_ Nation, and diverting themselves with  delights in new sorts
of Torment, did in time improve in Barbarism and Cruelty; wherewith the
Omnipotent being incensed suffered them to fail by a more desperate and
dangerous lapse into a reprobate state.

_Of the Isles of St._ John _and_ Jamaica.

In the Year 1509, the _Spaniards_ sailed to the Islands of St. _John_
and _Jamaica_ (resembling Gardensa and Bee-hives) with the same purpose
and design they proposed to themselves in the Isle of _Hispaniola_,
perpetrating innumerable Robberies and Villanies as before; whereunto
they added unheard of Cruelties by Murdering, Burning, Roasting, and
Exposing Men to be torn to pieces by Dogs; and Finally by afflicting
and harassing them with un-exampled Oppressions and torments in the
Mines, they spoiled and unpeopled this Contrey of these Innocents.
These two Isles containing six hundred thousand at least, though at
this day there are scarce two hundred men to be found in either of
them, the remainder perishing without the knowledge of Christian Faith
or Sacrament.


_Of the Isle of _Cuba.

In the Year of our Lord 1511. They passed over to _Cuba_, which
contains as much ground in length as there is distance between
_Valledolid_ and _Rome_, well furnished with large and stately
Provinces and very populous, against whom they proceeded with no more
humanity and Clemency, or indeed to speak truth with greater Savageness
and Brutality. Several memorable Transactions worthy observation,
passed in this Island.  A certain _Cacic_ a potent Peer, named
_Hathney_, who not long before fled _Hispaniola_ to _Cuba_ for Refuge
from Death, or Captivity during Life; and understanding by certain
_Indians_ that the _Spaniards_ intended to steer their course thither,
made this Oration to all his People Assembled together.

 You are not ignorant that there is a rumor spread abroad among us of
 the _Spaniards_ Arrival, and are sensible by woeful experience how such
 and such (naming them) and _Hayti_ (so they term _Hispaniola_ in their
 own language) with their Inhabitants have been treated by them, that
 they design to visit us with equal intentions of committing such acts
 as they have hitherto been guilty of. But do you not know the cause and
 reason of their coming?  We are altogether ignorant of it, they
 replied, but sufficiently satisfied that they are cruelly and wickedly
 inclined:  Then thus, he said, they adore a certain Covetous Deity,
 whose cravings are not to be satisfied by a few moderate offerings, but
 they may answer his Adoration and Worship, demand many unreasonable
 things of us, and use their utmost endeavors to subjugate and
 afterwards murder us.  Then taking up a Cask or Cabinet near at hand,
 full of Gold and Gems, he proceeded in this manner: This is the
 _Spaniards_ God, and in honour of him if you think well of it, let us
 celebrate our _Arcytos_ (which are certain kinds of Dances and caprings
 used among them); and by this means his Deity being appeas'd, he will
 impose his Commands on the Spaniards that they shall not for the future
 molest us; who all unanimously with one consent in a loud tone made
 this reply.  Well said, Well said, and thus they continued skipping and
 dancing before this Cabinet, without the least intermission, till they
 were quite tired  and grown weary: Then the Noble _Hathney_ re-assuming
 his discourse, said, if we Worship this Deity, till ye be ravished from
 us, we shall be destroyed, therefore I judge it convenient, upon mature
 deliberation, that we cast it into the River, which advice was approved
 of by all without opposition, and the Cabinet thrown in to the next

When the Spaniards first touched this Island, this _Cacic_, who was
thoroughly acquainted with them, did avoid and shun them as much as in
him lay, and defended himself by force of Arms, wherever he met with
them, but at length being taken he was burnt alive, for flying from so
unjust and cruel a Nation, and endeavuoring to secure his Life against
them, who only thirsted after the blood of himself and his own People.
Now being bound to the post, in order of his Execution a certain Holy
Monk of the _Franciscan_ Order, discours'd with him concerning God and
the Articles of our Faith, which he never heard of before, and which
might be satisfactory and advantagious to him, considering the small
time allow'd him by the Executioner, promising him Eternal Glory and
Repose, if he truly believ'd them, or other wise Everlasting Torments.
After that _Hathney_ had been silently pensive sometime, he askt the
Monk whether the _Spaniards_ also were admitted into Heaven, and he
answering that the Gates of Heaven were open to all that were Good and
Godly, the _Cacic_ replied without further consideration, that he would
rather go to Hell then Heaven, for fear he should cohabit in the same
Mansion with so Sanguinary and Bloody a Nation.  And thus God and the
Holy Catholick Faith are Praised and Reverenced by the Practices of the
_Spaniards_ in _America_.

Once it so hapned, that the Citizens of a Famous City, distant Ten
Miles from the place where we then resided, came to meet us with a
splendid Retinue, to render their Visit more Honourable, bringing with
them delicious Viands, and such kind of Dainties, with as great a
quantity of Fish as they could possibly procure, and distributing them
among us; but behold on a sudden, some wicked Devil possessing the
minds of the _Spaniards_, agitated them with great fury, that I being
present, and without the least Pretence or Occasion offered, they cut
off in cold Blood above Three Thousand Men, Women and Children
promiscuously, such Inhumanities and Barbarisms were committed in my
sight, as no Age can parallel.

Some time after I dispatch Messengers to all the Rulers of the Province
of _Havana_, that they would by no means be terrified, or seek their
refuge by absence and flight, but to meet us, and that I would engage
(for they understood my Authority) that they should not receive the
least of Injuries; for the whole Country was extremely afflicted at the
Evils and Mischiefs already perpetrated, and this I did with the
advice of their Captain.  As soon as we approached the Province, Two
and Twenty of their Noblemen came forth to meet us, whom the Captain
contrary to his Faith given, would have expos'd to the Flames,
alledging that it was expedient they should be put to Death, who were,
at any time, capacitated to use any Stratagem against us, but with
great difficulty and much adoe, I snatcht them out of the fire.

These Islanders of _Cuba_, being reduc'd to the same Vasselage and
Misery as the Inhabitants of _Hispaniola_, seeing themselves perish and
dy without any redress, fled to the Mountains for shelter, but other
Desperado's, put a period to their days with a Halter, and the Husband,
together with his Wife and Children, hanging himself, put an end to
those Calamities.

By the ferocity of one _Spanish_ Tyrant (whom I knew) above Two Hundred
_Indians_ hang'd themselves of their own accord; and a multitude of
People perished by this kind of Death.

A certain Person here in the same Isle constituted to exercise a kind
of Royal Power, hapned to have Three Hundred _Indians_ fall to his
share, of which in Three Months, through excessive labour, One Hundred
and Sixty were destroy'd, insomuch that in a short space there remained
but a tenth part alive, namely Thirty, but when the number was doubled,
they all perisht at the same rate, and all that were bestow'd upon him
lost their lives, till at length he paid his last Debt to Nature and
the Devil.

In Three or Four Months time I being there present, Six Thousand
Children and upward were murder'd, because they had lost their Parents
who labour'd in the Mines; nay I was a Witness of many other stupendous

But afterward they consulted how to persecute those that lay hid in the
Mountains, who were miserably massacred, and consequently this Isle
made desolate, which I saw not long after, and certainly it is a
dreadful and depolorable sight to behold it thus unpeopled and laid
waste, like a Desert.



In the Year 1514, a certain unhappy Governour Landed on the firm Land
or Continent, a most bloody Tyrant, destitute of all Mercy and
Prudence, the Instrument of God's Wrath, with a Resolution to people
these parts with _Spaniards_; and although some Tyrants had touched
here before him, and Cruelty hurried them into the other World by
several wayes of Slaughter, yet they came no farther than to the Sea
Coast, where they comitted podigious Thefts and Robberies, but this
Person exceeded all that ever dwelt in other Islands, though execrable
and profligate Villains: for he did not only ravage and depopulate the
Sea-Coast, but buried the largest Regions and most ample Kingdoms in
their own Ruins, sending Thousdands to Hell by his Butcheries.  He made
Incursions for many Miles continuance, that is to say, in those
Countries that are included in the Territories of _Darien_ and the
Provinces of _Nicaraqua_, where are near Five Hundred Miles of the most
Fertil Land in the World, and the most opulent for Gold of all the
Regions hitherto discover'd. And although _Spain_ has bin sufficiently
furnished with the purest Gold, yet it was dig'd out of the Bowels and
Mines of the said Countries by the _Indians_, where (as we have said)
they perished.

This Ruler, with his Complices found out new inventions to rack,
torment, force and extort Gold from the _Indians_.  One of his Captains
in a certain Excursion undertaken by the Command of his Governeur to
make Depraedations, destroy'd Forty Thousand Persons and better
exposing them to the edge of the Sword, Fire, Dogs and variety of
Torments; of all which a Religious Man of the Order of St. _Francis,
Franciscus de S. Romano_, who was then present was an Eye-Witness.

Great and Injurious was the blindness of those praesided over the
_Indians_; as to the Conversion and Salvation of this People: for they
denyed in Effect what they in their flourishing Discourse pretended to,
and declar'd with their Tongue what they contradicted in their Heart;
for it came to this pass, that the _Indians_ should be commanded on the
penalty of a bloody War, Death, and perpetual Bondage, to embrace the
Christian Faith, and submit to the Obedience of the _Spanish_ King; as
if the Son of God, who suffered Death for the Redemption of all
Mankind, had enacted a Law, when he pronounced these words, _Go and
teach all Nations_ that Infidels, living peaceably and quietly in their
Hereditary Native Country, should be impos'd upon pain of Confiscation
of all their Chattels, Lands, Liberty, Wives, Children, and Death
itself, without any precedent instruction to Confess and Acknowledge
the true God, and subject themselves to a King, whom they never saw, or
heard mention'd before; and whose Messengers behav'd themselves toward
them with such Inhumanity and Cruelty as they had done hitherto.  Which
is certainly a most foppish and absurd way of Proceeding, and merits
nothing but Scandal, Derision, nay Hell itself.  Now suppose this
Notorious and Profligate Governour had bin impower'd to see the
Execution of these Edicts perform'd, for of themselves they were
repugnant both to Law and Equity; yet he commanded (or they who were to
see the Execution thereof, did it of their own Heads without Authority)
that when they phansied or proposed to themselves any place, that was
well stor'd with Gold, to rob and feloniously steal it away from the
_Indians_ living in their Cities and Houses, without the least
suspicion of any ill Act.  These wicked _Spaniards_, like Theives came
to any place by stealth, half a Mile off of any City, Town or Village,
and there in the Night published and proclaim'd the Edict among
themselves after this manner:

 You _Cacics_ and _Indians_ of this Continent, the Inhabitants of such
 a Place, which they named; We declare or be it known to you all, that
 there is but one God, one hope, and one King of _Castile_, who is Lord
 of these Countries; appear forth without delay, and take the oath of
 Allegiance to the _Spanish_ King, as his Vassals.

So about the Fourth Watch of the Night, or Three in the Morning these
poor Innocents overwhelm'd with heavy Sleep, ran violently on that place
they named, set Fire to their Hovels, which were all thatcht, and so,
without Notice, burnt Men, Women and Children; kill'd whom they pleas'd
upon the Spot; but those they preserv'd as Captives, were compell'd
throughTorments to confess where they had hid the Gold, when they found
little or none at their Houses; but they who liv'd being first
stigmatized, were made Slaves; yet after the Fire was extinguisht, they
came hastily in quest of the Gold.  Thus did this Wicked Man, devoted to
all the Infernal Furies, behave himself with the Assistance of Profligate
Christians, whom he had lifted in his Service from the 14th to the 21. or
22. Year, together with his Domestick Servants and Followers, from whom he
received as many Portions, besides what he had from his Slaves in Gold,
Pearls, and Jewels, as the Chief Governor would have taken, and all
that were constituted to execute any kind of Kingly Office followed in
the same Footsteps; every one sending as many of his Servants as he
could spare, to share in the spoil.  Nay he that came hither as Biship
first of all did the same also, And at the vory time (as I conjecture)
the _Spaniards_ did depraedate or rob this Kingdom of above Ten Hundred
Thousand Crowns of Gold: Yet all these their Thefts and Felonies, we
scarce find upon Record that Three Hundred Thousand _Castilian_ Crowns
ever came into the _Spanish_ King's Coffers; yet there were above Eight
Hundred Thousand Men slain: The other Tyrants who governed this Kingdom
afterward to the Three and Thirtieth year, depriv'd all of them of Life
that remain'd among the Inhabitants.

Among all those flagitious Acts committed by this Governour while he
rul'd this Kindom, or by his Consent and Permission this must by no
means be omitted: A certain _Casic_, bestowing on him a Gift,
voluntarily, or (which is more probably) induced thereunto by Fear,
about the weight of Nine Thousand Crowns, but the _Spaniards_ not
satisfied with so fast a Sum of Money, sieze him, fix him to a Pole;
extended his Feet, which being mov'd near the Fire, they demanded a
larger Sum; the _Casic_ overcome with Torments, sending home, procur'd
Three Thousand more to be brought and presented to them: But the
_Spaniards_, adding new Torments to new Rage and Fury, when they found
he would confer no more upon them, which was because he could not, or
otherwize because he would not, they expos'd him for so long to that
Torture, till by degrees of heat the Marrow gusht out of the Soles of
his Feet, and so he dyed; Thus they often murder'd the Lords and Nobles
which such Torments to Extort the Gold from them.

One time it hapned that a Century or Party of One Hundred _Spaniards_
making Excursions, came to a Mountain, where many People shunning so
horrid and pernicious an Enemy conceal'd themselves, who immediately
rushing on them, putting all to the Sword they could meet with, and
then secur'd Seventy or Eighty Married Women as well as Virgins
Captives; but a great Number of _Indians_ with a fervent desire of
recovering their Wives and Daughters appear'd in Arms against the
_Spaniards_, and when they drew near the Enemy, they unwilling to lose
the Prey, run the Wives and Maidens through with their Swords.  The
_Indians_ through Grief and Trouble, smiting their Breasts, brake out
into these Exclamations.  O perverse Generation of Men! O Cruel
_Spaniards_!  What do you Murder _las Iras_?  (In their Language they
call Women by the Name of _las Iras_ as if they had said: To slay Women
is an Act of bloody minded Men, worse than Brutes and Wild Beasts.

There was the House of a Puissant Potentate scituated about Ten or
Fifteen Miles from _Panama_, whose name was _Paris_, very Rich in Gold;
and the _Spaniards_ gave him a visit, who were entertained with
Fraternal Kindness, and Courteously received, and of his own accord,
presented the Captain with a Gift of Fifteen Thousand Crowns; who was
of opinion, as well as the rest of the _Spaniards_, that he who
bestow'd such a quantity of Money _gratis_, was the Master of vast
Treasure; whereupon they counterfeit a pretended Departure, but
returning about the Fourth Night-Watch, and entring the City privily
upon a surprize, which they thought was sufficiently secur'd,
consecrated it with many Citizens to the Flames, and robb'd them of
Fifty or Sixty Thousand Crowns.  The _Dynast_ or Prince escaped with
his Life, and gathering together as great a Number of Men as he could
possibly at that instant of time, and Three or Four Days being elapsed,
pursued the _Spaniards_, who had depriv'd him also by Violence and
Rapine of a Hundred and Thirty or Forty Thousand Crowns, and pouring in
upon them, recover'd all his Gold with the destruction of Fifty
_Spaniards_, but the remainder of them having receiv'd many Wounds in
that Rencounter betook them to their Heels and sav'd themselves by
flight: but in few days after the _Spaniards_ return, and fall upon the
said _Casic_ well-arm'd and overthrow him and all his Forces, and they
who out-liv'd the Combat, to their great Misfortune, were expos'd to
the usual and frequently mention'd Bondage.

_Of the Province of_ NICARAQUA.

The said Tyrant _An. Dom._ 1522. proceeded farther very unfortunately
to the Subjugation of Conquest of this Province.  In truth no Person
can satisfactorily or sufficiently express the Fertility, Temperateness
of the Climate, or the Multitude of the Inhabitants of _Nicaraqua_,
which was almost infinite and admirable; for this Region contain'd some
Cities that were Four Miles long; and the abundance of Fruits of the
Earth (which was the cause of such a Concourse of People) was highly
commendable.  The People of this place, because the Country was Level
and Plain, destitute of Mountains, so very delightful and pleasant,
that they could not leave it without great grief, and much
dissatisfaction, they were therefore tormented with the greater
Vexations and Persecutions, and forced to bear the _Spanish_ Tyranny
and Servitude, which as much Patience as they were Masters of: Add
farther that they were peaceable and meek spirited.  This Tyrant with
these Complices of his Cruelty did afflict this Nation (whose advice he
made use of in destroying the other Kingdoms) with such and so many
great Dammages, Slaughters, Injustice, Slaver, and Barbarisme, that a
Tongue, though of Iron, could not express them all fully.  He sent into
the Province (which is larger than the County of _Ruscinia_) Fifty
Horse-Men, who put all the People to the Edge of the Sword, sparing
neither Age nor Sex upon the most trivial and inconsiderable occasion:
As for Example, if they did not come to them with all possible speed,
when called; and bring the imposed burthen of _Mahid_ (which signifies
Corn in their Dialect) or if they did not bring the Number of _Indians_
required to his own, and the Service or rather Servitude of his
Associates.  And the Country being all Campaign or Level, no Person was
able to withstand the Hellish Fury of their Horses.

He commanded the _Spaniards_ to make Excursions, that is, to rob other
Provinces, permitting and granting these Theiving Rogues leave to take
away by force as many of these peacable People as they could, who being
iron'd (that they might not sink under the Burthen of Sixty or Eighty
Pound weight) it frequently hapned, that of Four Thousand _Indians_,
Six only returned home, and so they dyed by the way; but if any of them
chanced to faint, being tired with over-weighty Burthens, or through
great Hunger and Thirst should be siezed with a Distemper; or too much
Debility and Weakness, that they might not spend time in taking off
their Fetters, they beheaded them, so the Head fell one way, and the
Body another: The _Indians_ when they spied the _Spaniards_ making
preparations for such Journeys, knowing very well, that few, or none
returned home alive, just upon their setting out with Sighs and Tears,
burst out into these or the like Expressions.

 Those were Journeys, which we travelled frequently in the service of
 Christians, and in some tract of time we return'd to our Habitations,
 Wives and Children: But now there being no hope of a return, we are for
 ever depriv'd of their Sight and Conversation.

It hapned also, that the same President would dissipate or disperse the
_Indians de novo_ at his own pleasure, to the end (as it was reported)
he might violently force the _Indians_ away from such as did infest or
molest him; and dispose of them to others; upon which it fell out, that
for the space of a Year complete, there was no sowing or planting: And
when they wanted Bread, the _Spaniards_ did by force plunder the
_Indians_ of the whole stock of Corn that they had laid up for the
support of their Families, and by these indirect Courses above Thirty
Thousand perished with Hunger.  Nay it fortun'd at one time, that a
Woman opprest with insufferable Hunger, depriv'd her own Son of his
Life to preserve her own.

In this Province also they brought many to an untimely End, loading
their Shoulders with heavy planks and pieces of Timer, which they were
compell'd to carry to a Haven Forty Miles distant, in order to their
building of Ships; sending them likewise unto the Mountains to find out
Hony and Wax, where they were devour'd by Tygers; nay they loaded Women
impregnated with Carriage and Burthens fit for beasts.

But no greater pest was there that could unpeople this Province, than
the License granted the _Spaniards_ by this Governour, to demand
Captives from the _Casics_ and Potentates of this Region; for at the
Expiration of Four or Five Months, or as often as they obtain'd leave
of the Governour to demand them, they deliver'd them up Fifty Servants,
and the _Spaniards_ terrified them with Menaces, that if they did not
obey them in answering their unreasonable Demands, they should be burnt
alive, or baited to Death by Dogs.  Now the _Indians_ are but slenderly
stor'd with Servants; for it is much if a _Casic_ hath Three or Four in
his Retinue, therefore they have recourse to the Subjects; and when
they had, in the first place, seized the Orphans, they required
earnestly and instantly one Son of the Parent, who had but Two, and Two
of him that had but Three, and for the Lord of the place satisfied the
desires of the Tyrant, not without the Effusion of Tears and Groans of
the People, who (as it seems) were very careful of their Children.  And
this being frequently repeated in the space between the Year 1523, and
1533, the Kingdom lost all their Inhabitants, for in Six or Seven Years
time there were constantly Five or Six Ships made ready to be fraighted
with _Indians_ that were sold in the Regions of _Panama_ and
_Perusium_, where they all dyed; for it is by dayly Experience prov'd
and known, that the _Indians_ when Transported out of their Native
Country into any other, soon dye; because they are shortned in their
allowance of Food, and the Task impos'd on them no ways dimished, they
being only bought for Labour.  And by this means, there have been taken
out of this Province Five Hundred Thousand Inhabitants and upward, who
before were Freemen, and made Slaves, and in the Wars made on them, and
the horrid Bondage they were reduc'd unto Fifty or Sixty Thousand more
have perished, and to this day very many still are destroy'd.  Now all
these Slaughters have been committed within the space of Fourteen years
inclusively, possibly in this Province of _Nicaraqua_ there remains
Four or Five Thousand Men who are put to Death by ordinary and personal
Opressions, whereas (according to what is said already) it did exceed
other Countries of the World in multitude of People.

                      _Of new_ SPAIN.

New _Spain_ was discovered _Anno Dom._ 1517. and in the detection there
was no first or second Attempt, but all were exposed to slaughter.  The
year ensuing those _Spaniards_ (who style themselves Christians) came
thither to rob, kill and slay, though they pretend they undertook this
Voyage to people the Countrey.  From this year to the present, _viz._
1542. the Injustice, Violence and Tyranny of the _Spaniards_ came to
the highest degree of extremety: for they had shook hands with and bid
adieu to all fear of God and the King, unmindful of themselves in this
sad and deplorable condition, for the Destructions, Cruelties,
Butcheries, Devastations, the Domolishing of Cities, Depradations,
_&c._ which they perpetrated in so many and such ample Kingdoms, are
such and so great, and strike the minds of Men with so great horror,
that all we have related before are inconsiderable comparatively to
those which have been acted from the year 1518 to 1542, and to this
very month of _September_ that we now live to see the most heavy,
grievous and detestable things are committed, that the Rule we laid
down before as a Maxim might be induputably verified, to wit, that from
the beginning they ran headlong from bad to worse, and were overcome in
their Diabolical acts and wickedness only by themselves.

Thus from the first entrance of the _Spaniards_ into _New Spain_, which
hapned on the 18th day of _April_ in the said month of the year 1518,
to 1530, the space of ten whole years, there was no end or period put
to the Destruction and Slaughters committed by the merciless hands of
the Sanguinary and Blood-thirsty Spaniard in the Continent, or space of
450 Miles round about _Mexico_, and the adjacent or neighboring parts,
which might contain four or five spatious Kingdoms, that neither for
magnitude or fertility would give _Spain_ her self the pre-eminance.
This intire Region was more populous then _Toledo, Sevil, Valedolid,
Saragoza,_ and _Faventia_; and there is not at this day in all of them
so many people, nor when they flourisht in their greatest height and
splendor was there such a number, as inhabited that Region, which
embraceth in its Circumference, four hundred and eighty Miles.  Within
these twelve years the Spaniards have destroyed in the Said Countinent,
by Spears, Fire and Sword, computing Men, Women, Youth, and Children
above Four Millions of people in these their Acquests or Conquests (for
under that word they mask their Cruel Actions) or rather those of the
Turk himself, which are reported of them, tending to the ruin of the
Catholick Cause, together with their Invasions and Unjust Wars,
contrarty to and condemned by Divine as well as Human Laws; nor are
they reckoned in this number who perished by their more then _Egyptian_
Bondage and usual Oppressions.

There is no Tongue, Art, or Human knowledge can recite the horrid
Impieties, which these Capital Enemies to Government and all Mankind
have been guilty of at several times and in several Nations; nor can
the circumstantial Aggravations of some of their wicked Acts be
unfolded or display'd by any manner of Industry, time or writing, but
yet I will say somewhat of every individual particular thing, which
this protestation and Oath, that I conceive I am not able to comprehend
one of a Thousand.


_Of_ New Spain _in Particular_.

Among other Slaughters this also they perpetrated in the most spacious
City of _Cholula_, which consisted of Thirty Thousand Families; all the
Chief Rulers of that Region and Neighboring places, but first the
Priests with their High Priest going to meet the Spaniards in Pomp and
State, and to the end they might give them a more reverential and
honourable reception appointed them to be in the middle of the
Solemnity, that so being entertained in the Appartments of the most
powerful and principal Noblemen, they might be lodged in the City.  The
Spaniards presently consult about their slaughter or castigation (as
they term it) that they might fill every corner of this Region by their
Cruelties and wicked Deeds with terror and consternation; for in all
the Countries that they came they took this course, that immediately at
their first arrival they committed some notorious butcheries, which
made those Innocent Sheep tremble for fear.  To this purpose therefore
they sent to the Governours and Nobles of the Cities, and all Places
subject unto them, together with their supream Lord, that they should
appear before them, and no soner did they attend in expectation of some
Capitulation or discourse with the Spanish Commander, but they were
presently seized upon and detained prisoners before any one could
advertise or give them notice of their Captivity.  They demanded of
them six thousand _Indians_ to drudge for them in the carriage of their
bag and baggage; and as soon as they came the _Spaniards_ clapt them
into the Yards belonging to their Houses and there inclosed them all.
It was a thing worthy of pity and compassion to behold this wretches
people in what a condition they were when they prepared themselves to
receive the burthens laid on them by the Spaniards.  They came to them
naked, their Privities only vail'd, their Shoulders loaden with food;
only covered with a Net, they laid themselves quietly on the ground,
and shrinking in their Bodies like poor Wretches, exposed themselves to
their Swords: Thus being all gathered together in ther Yards, some of
the Spaniards Armed held the doors to drive them away if attempting to
approach, and others with Lances and Swords Butcher these Innocents so
that not one of them escaped, but two or three days after some of them,
who hid themselves among the dead bodies, being all over besprinkled
with blood and gore, presented themselves to the Spaniards, imporing
their mercy and the prolongation of their Lives with tears in their
Eyes and all imaginable submission, yet they, not in the least moved
with pity or compassion, tore them in pieces: but all the Chief
Governours who were above one hundred in number, were kept bound, whom
the Captain commanded to be affixed to posts and burnt; yet the King of
the whole Countrey escaped, and betook himself with a Train of thirty
or forty Gentlemen, to a Temple (called in their Tongue _Quu_) which he
made use of as a Castle or Place of Defence, and there defended himself
a great part of the day, but the Spaniards who suffer none to escape
out of their clutches, especially Souldiers, setting fire to the
Temple, burnt all those that were there inclosed, who brake out into
these dying words and exclamations.  O profligate Men, what injury have
we done you to occasion our death!  Go, go to _Mexico_, where our
supream Lord _Montencuma_ will revenge our cause upon your persons.
And 'tis reported, while the Spaniards were engated in this Tragedy
destroying six or seven thousand Men, that their Commander with great
rejoycing sang this following Ayre;

 _Mira_ Nero _de_ Tarpeia, Roma _como se ardia,
  Gritos de_ Ninos _y Vieyot, y el de nadase dolia._

 _From the_ Tarpeian _still Nero espies_
 Rome _all in Flames with unrelenting Eyes,_
 _And hears of young and old the dreadful Cries._

They also committed a very great Butchery in the City _Tepeara_, which
was larger and better stored with Houses than the former; and here they
Massacred an incredible number with the point of the Sword.

Setting sail from _Cholula_, they steer'd their course to _Mexico_,
whose King sent his Nobles and Peers with abundance of Presents to meet
them by the way, testifying by divers sorts of Recreations how grateful
their arrival was and acceptable to him: but when they came to a steep
Hill, his brother went forward to meet them accompanied with many
Noblemen who brought them many gifts in Gold, Silver, and Robes
Emboidered with Gold and at their entrance into the City, the King
himself carried in a golden Litter, together (with the whole Court)
attended them to the Palace prepared for their reception; and that very
day as I was informed by some persons then and there present by a grand
piece of Treachery, they took the very great King _Montencuma_, never
so much as dreaming of any such surprize, and put him into the custody
of eighty Soldiers, and afterward loaded this Legs with irons; but all
these things being passed over with a light pencil of which much might
be said, one thing I will discover acted by them, that may merit your
obervation.  When the Captain arrived at the Haven, to fight with a
Spanish Officer, who made War against him, and left another with an
hundred Soldiers, more or less as a Guard to King _Montencuma_, it came
into their heads, that to act somewhat worth remembrance, that the
dread of their Cruelty might be more and more apprehended, and greatly

In the interim all the Nobility and Commonality of the City thought of
nothing else, but how to exhilarate the Spirit of their Captive King,
and solace him during his Confinement with varity of diversions and
Recreations; and among the rest this was one, _viz._, Revellings and
Dances which they celebrated in all Streets and Highways, by night and
they in their Idiom term _Mirotes_, as the Islanders do _Arcytos_; to
these Masques and nocturnal Jigs they usually go with all their Riches,
Costly Vestments and Robes, together with any thing that is pretious
and glorious, being wholly addicted to this humor, nor is there any
greater token among them then this of their extraordinary exultation
and rejoycing.  The Nobles in like manner, and Princes of the Blood
Royal every one according to his degree exercise these Masques and
Dances, in some place adjoyning to the House where their King and Lord
is detained Prisoner.  Now there were not far from the Palace about
2000 Young Noblemen who were the issue of the greatest Potentates of
the Kingom, and indeed the flower of the whole Nobility of King
_Motencuma_, and a _Spanish_ Captain went to visit them with some
Soldiers, and sent others to the rest of the places in the City where
these Revellings were kept, under pretence only of being spectators of
the solemnity.  Now the Captain had commanded, that, at a certain hour
appointed they should fall upon these Revellers, and he himself
approaching the _Indians_ very busie at their Dancing, said, _San Jago_
(that is St. _James_ it seems that was the Word) _Let us rush in upon
them_, which was no sooner heard, but they all began with their naked
Swords in hand to pierce their tender and naked Bodies, and spill their
generous and Noble blood, till not one of them was left alive on the
place, and the rest following his example in other parts, (to their
inexpressible stupefaction and grief) seized on all these Provinces.
Nor will the Inhabitants till the General conflagration ever
discontinue the Celebration of these Festivals, and the Lamentation and
Singing with certain kind of Rhythmes in their _Arcytos_, the doleful
ditty of the Calamity and Ruin of this Seminary of the antient Nobility
of the whole Kingdom, which was their frequent Pride and Glory.

The _Indians_ seeing this not to be exampled cruelty and iniquity
executed against such a number of guiltless persons, and also bearing
with incredible patience the unjust Imprisonment of their King, from
whom they had an absolute Command not to take up Arms against the
_Spaniard_, the whole City was suddenly up in Arms fell on the
_Spaniards_ and wounded many of them, the rest hardly escaping; but
they presenting the point of a Sword to the Kings Breast, threatned him
with death unless he out of the Window commanded them to desist; but
the _Indians_ for the present disobeying the Kings Mandate, proceeded
to the Election of a Generalissimo, or Commander in Chief over all
their Forces; and because that the Captain, who went to the Port
returned Victor, and brought away a far greater number of _Spaniards_
then he took along with him, there was a Cessation of Arms for three or
four days, till he re-entred the City, and then the _Indians_ having
gatherered together and made up a great Army, fought so long and so
strenuously, that the _Spaniards_ despairing of their safety, called a
Council of War and therein resolv'd to retreat in the dead time of
night and so draw off their Forces from the City: which coming to the
knowledge of the _Indians_ they destroyed a great number Retreating on
the Bridges made over their Lakes in this just and Holy War, for the
causes above-mentioned, deserving the approbation of every upright
Judge.  But afterward the _Spaniards_ having recruited and got together
in a Body, they resolved to take the City and carried it at last,
wherein most detestable Butcheries were acted, a vast number of the
people slain, and their Rulers perished in the Flames.

All these horrid Muders being commited in _Mexico_ and other Cities
ten, fifteen and twenty miles distant.  This same Tyranny and Plague in
the abstract proceeded to infest and lay desolate _Panuco_; a Region
abounding with Inhabitants even to admiration, nor were the slaughters
therein perpetrated less stupendous and wonderful.  In the same manner
they utterly laid wasate the Provinces of _Futepeca, Ipilcingonium_ and
_Columa_, every one of them being as large as the Kingdoms of _Leon_,
and _Castile_.  It would be very difficult or rather impossible to
relate the Cruelties and Destruction there made and committed, and
prove very nauseous and offensive to the Reader.

'Tis observable, that they entred upon these Dominions and laid waste
the _Indian_ Territories, so populous, that it would have rejoyced the
hearts of all true Christians to see their number upon no other title
or pretense, but only to enslave them; for at their first arrival they
compel'd them to swear the Oath of Obedience and Fealty to the King of
_Spain_, and if they did not condescend to it, they menace them with
death and Vassalage, and they who did not forthwith appear to satisfie
the unequitable Mandates, and submit to the will and pleasure of such
unjust and Cruel Men were declared Rebels, and accu's of that Crime
before our Lord the King; and blindess or ignorance of those who were
set over the _Indians_ as Rulers did so darken their understanding that
they did not apprehend that known and incontrovertible Maxim in Law,
_That no Man can be called a Rebel, who is not first proved to be a
subject_.  I omit the injuries and prejudice they do to the King
himself, when they spoil and ravage his Kingdoms, and as much as in
them lies, diminish and impair all his Right and Title to the
_Indians_, nay in plain English invalidate and make it null and void.
And these are the worthy Services which the Spaniards do for our Kings
in those Countries, by the injust and colourable pretences aforesaid.

This Tyrant upon the same pretext sent two other Captains, who exceeded
him in impiety and cruelty, if possible to the most flourishing and
Feril (in Fruits and Men) Kingdoms of _Guatemala_, Situate toward the
South, who had also received Orders to go to the Kingdoms of _Naco,
Hondera_, and _Guaymura_, verging upon the North, and are Borderers on
_Mexico_ three hundred miles together.  The one was sent by Land and
the other by Sea, and both well furnished with Horse and Foot.

This I declare for a Truth, that the outrages committed by these two,
particularly by him that went to _Guatimala_ (for the other not long
after his departure died a violent Death) would afford matter
sufficient for an entire Volume, and when completed he so crouded with
slaughters, injuries, butcheries and inhuman Desolations, so horrid and
detestable as would Ague-shake the present as well as future ages with

He that put out to Sea vexed all the Maritime Coasts with his cruel
Incursions; now some inhabitants of the Kingdom of _Jucatan_ which is
seated in the way to the Kingdoms of _Naco_ and _Naymura_, to which
places he steered his course, came to meet him with burthens of
Presents and Gifts: and as soon as he approacht them, sent his Captains
with a party of Soldiers to depopulate their Land, who committed great
spoils and made cruel slaughters among them; and in particular a
Seditious and Rebellious Officer who with three hundres Soldiers entred
a Neighboring Country to _Guatimala_, and there firing the Cities and
Murdering all the Inhabitants, violently deprived them of all their
goods, which he did designedly, for the space of an hundred and twenty
miles; to the end that if his Companions should follow them, they might
find the Country laid wast, and so be destroyed by the _Indians_ in
revenge for the dammage they had received by him and his Forces which
hapned accordingly: for the Chief Commander whose order the abovesaid
Captain had disobey'd and so became a Rebel to him, was there slain.
But many other bloody Tyrants succeeded him, who from the year 1524 to
1535. did unpeople and make a Desert of the Provinces of _Naco_ and
_Hondura_ (as well as other places) which were lookt upon as the
Paradise of delights, and better peopled then other Regions; insomuch
that within the Term of these eleven years there fell in those
Countries above two Millions of Men, and now there are hardly remaining
Two Thousand, who dayly dye by the severity of their Slavery.

But to return to that great Tyrant, who outdid the former in cruelty
(as hinted above) and is equal to those that Tyrannize there at
present, who travelled to _Guatimala_; he from the Provinces adjoyning
to _Mexico_, which according to his prosecuted journey (as he himself
Writes and testifies with his own hand in Letters to the Prince of
Tyrants) are distant from _Guatimala_ four hundred miles, did make it
to his urgent and dayly business to procure Ruin and Destruction by
slaughter, Fire and Depopulations, compelling all to submit to the
Spanish King, whom they lookt upon to be more unjust and cruel then his
inhumane and bloodthirsty Ministers.

_Of the Kingdom and Province of_ GUATIMALA.

This Tyrant at his first entrance here acted and commanded prodigious
Slaughters to be perpetrated: Notwithstanding which, the Chief Lord in
his Chair or Sedan attended by many Nobles of the City of _Ultlatana_,
the Emporium of the whole Kingdom, together with Trumpets, Drums and
great Exultation, went out to meet him, and brought with them all sorts
of Food in great abundance, with such things as he stood in most need
of.  That Night the _Spaniards_ spent without the City, for they did
not judge themselves secure in such a well-fortified place.  The next
day he commanded the said Lord with many of his Peers to come before
him, from whom they imperiously challenged a certain quantity of Gold;
to whom the _Indians_ return'd this modest Answer, that they could not
satisfie his Demands, and indeed this Region yeilded no Golden Mines;
but they all, by his command, without any other Crime laid to their
Charge, or any Legal Form of Proceeding were burnt alive.  The rest of
the Nobles belonging to other Provinces, when they found their Chief
Lords, who had the Supreme Power were expos'd to the Merciless Element
of Fire kindled by a more merciless Enemy; for this Reason only,
becauase they bestow'd not what they could not upon them, _viz._ Gold,
they fled to the Mountains, (their usual Refuge) for shelter,
commanding their Subjects to obey the _Spaniards_, as Lords, but withal
strictly and expressly prohibiting and forbidding them, to inform the
_Spaniards_ of their Flight, or the Places of their Concealment.  And
behold a great many of the _Indians_ addrest themselves to them,
earnestly requesting, they would admit them as Subjects, being very
willing and ready to serve them: The Captain replyed that he would not
entertain them in such a Capacity, but instead of so doing would put
every individual Person to Death, if they would not discover the
Receptacles of the Fugitive Governours. The _Indians_ made answer that
they were wholly ignorant of the matter, yet that they themselves,
their Wives and Children should serve them; that they were at home,
they might come to them and put them to Death, or deal with them as
they pleas'd.  But the _Spaniards_, O wonderful! went to the Towns and
Villages, and destroy'd with their Lances these poor Men, their Wives
and Children, intent upon their Labour, and as they thought themselves,
secure and free from danger.  Another large Village they made desolate
in the space of two hours, sparing neither Age, nor Sex, putting all to
the Sword, without Mercy.

The _Indians_ perceiving that this Barbarous and Hard-hearted People
would not be pacified with Humility, large Gifts, or unexampled
Patience, but that they were butcher'd without any Cause, upon serious
Consultation took up a Resolution of getting together in a Body, and
fighting for their Lives and Liberty; for they conceiv'd it was far
better, (since Death to them was a necessary Evil) with Sword in Hand to
be kill'd by taking Revenge of the Enemy, then be destroy'd by them
without satisfaction.  But when they grew sensible of their wants of
Arms, Nakedness and Debility, and that they were altogether incapable
of the management of Horses, so as to prevail against such a furious
Adversary, recollecting themselves, they contriv'd this Strategm, to
dig Ditches and Holes in the High-way into which the Horses might fall
in their passage, and fixing therein purposely sharp and burnt Posts,
and covering them with loose Earth, so that they could not be discern'd
by their Riders, they might be transfixed or gored by them.  The Horses
fell twice or thrice into those holes, but afterward the _Spaniards_
took this Course to prevent them for the future; and made this a Law,
that as many of the _Indians_ of what Age or Sex soever as were taken,
should be cast into these Ditches that they had made.  Nay they threw
into them Women with Child, and as many Aged Men as they laid hold of,
till they were all fill'd up with Carkasses.  It was a sight deserving
Commiseration, to behold Women and Children gauncht or run through with
these Posts, some were taken off by Spears and Swords, and the
remainder expos'd to hungry Dogs, kept short of food for that purpose,
to be devour'd by them and torn in pieces.  They burnt a Potent
Nobleman in a very great Fire, saying, _That he was the more Honour'd
by this kind of Death_. All which Butcheries continued Seven Years,
from 1524, to 1531.  I leave the Reader to judge how many might be
Massacred during that time.

Among the Innumerable Flagitious Acts done by this Tyrant and his
Co-partners (for they were as Barbarous as their Principal) in this
Kingdom, this also occurs worthy of an Afterism in the Margin.  In the
Province of _Cuztatan_ in which S. _Saviour's_ City is seated, which
Country with the Neighbouing Sea-Coasts extends in Length Forty or
Fifty Miles, as also in the very City of _Cuzcatan_, the Metropolis of
the whole Province, he was entertain'd with great Applause: For about
Twenty or Thirty Thousand _Indians_ brought with them Hens and other
necessary Provisions, expecting this coming. He, accepting their Gifts,
commended every single _Spaniard_ to make choice of as many of these
People, as he had a mind to, that during their stay there, they might
use them as Servants, and forced to undergo the most servile Offices
they should impose on them. Every one cull'd out a Hundred, or Fifty,
according as he thought convenient for his peculiar service, and these
wretched _Indians_ did serve the _Spaniards_ with their utmost strength
and endeavour; so that there could be nothing wanting in them but
Adoration.  In the mean time this Captain requir'd a great Sum of Gold
from their Lords (for that was the Load-stone attracted them thither)
who answered, they were content to deliver him up all the Gold they had
in possession; and in order thereunto, the _Indians_ gathered together
a great Number of Spears gilded with _Orichalcum_, (which had the
appearance of Gold, and in truth some Gold in them intermixt) and they
were presented to him.  The Captain ordered them to be toucht, and when
he found them to be _Orichalcum_ or mixt Metal, he spake to the
_Spaniards_ as followeth.  Let that Nation that is  without Gold be
accursed to the Pit of Hell.  Let every Man detain those Servants he
Elected, let them be clapt in Irons, and stigmatiz'd with the Brand of
Slavery, which was accordingly done, for they were all burnt, who did
no excape with the King's Mark.  I my self saw the Impression made on
the Son of the Chiefest Person in the City.  Those that escap'd, with
other _Indians_, engaged the _Spaniards_ by Force of Arms, but with
such ill success, that abundance of them lost their Lives in the
Attempt.  After this they return'd to _Gautimala_, where they built a
City, which God in his Judgement with Three Deluges, the First of
Water, the Second of Earth, the Third of Stones, as big as half a score
Oxen, all concurring at one and the same time, laid Level with its own
Ashes.  Now all being slain who were capable of bearing Arms against
them, the rest were enslav'd, paying so much _per_ Head for Men and
Women as a Ransom; for they use no other servitude here, and then they
were sent into _Pecusium_ to be sold, by which means together with
their slaughters committed upon the Inhabitants, they destroy'd and
made a Desert of this Kingdom, which in Breadth as well as Length
contains One Hundred Miles; and with his Associates and Brethren in
Iniquity, Four Millions at least in Fifteen or Sixteen Years, that is,
from 1524, to 1540 were murdered, and dayly continues destroying the
small residue of that People with his Cruelties and Brutishness.

It was the usual Custom of this Tyrant, when he made War with any City
or Province, to take along with himas many of those _Indians_ he had
subjugated as he could, that they might fight with their Country-men;
and when he had in his Army Twenty, or sometimes Thirty Thousand of
them, and could not afford them sustenance, he permitted them to feed
on the Flesh of other _Indians_ taken Prisoners in War; and so kept a
Shambles of Man's Flesh in his Army, suffered Children to be kill'd and
roasted before his Face. They butcher'd the Men for their Feet and
Hands only; for these Members were accounted by them Dainties, most
delicious Food.

He as the Death of many by the intolerable Labour of Carrying Ships by
Land, causing them to Transport those Vessels with Anchors of a vast
weight from the _Septentrional_ to the _Mediterranean_ Sea, which are
One Hundred and Thirty Miles distant; as also abundance of great Guns
of the largest fort, which they carried on their bare, naked shoulders,
so that opprest with many great and ponderous Burthens, (I say no more
than what I saw) they dyed by the way: He separated and divided
Families, forcing Married Men from their Wives, and Maids from their
Parents, which he bestow'd upon his Marriners and Soldiers, to gratifie
their burning Lust.  All his Ships he freighted with _Indians_, where
Hunger and Thirst discharg'd them of their Servitude and his Cruelty by
a welcome Death.  He had two Companies of Soldiers who hackt and tore
them in pieces, like Thunder from Heaven speedily. O how many Parents
has he robb'd of their Children, how many Wives of their Husbands, and
Children of their Parents?  How many Adulteries, Rapes, and what
Libidinous Acts hath he been guilty of?  How many hath he enslav'd and
opprest with insufferable Anguish and unspeakable Calamities?  How many
Tears, Sighs and Groans hath he occasion'd?  To how many has he bin the
Author of Desolation, during their Peregrination in this, and of
Damnation in the World to come, not only to _Indians_, whose Number is
numberless, but even to _Spaniards_ themselves, by whose help and
assistance he committed such detestable Butcheries and flagitious
Crimes?  I supplicate Almighty God, that he would please to have Mercy
on his Soul, and require no other satisfaction than the violent Death,
which turn'd him out of this World.


_A farther Discourse of_ New Spain: _And some Account of_ Panuco
_and_ Xalisco.

After the perpetration of all the Cruelties rehearsed in _New Spain_
and other places, there came another Rabid and Cruel Tyrant to
_Panuco_, who acted the part of a bloody Tragedian as well as the rest,
and sent away many Ships loaden with these _Barbarians_ to be sold for
Slaves, made this Province almost a Wilderness, and which was
deplorable, Eight Hundred _Indians_, that had Rational Souls were given
in Exchange for a  Burthen-bearing-Beast, a Mule, or Camel.  Well, He
was made Governour of the City of _Mexico_, and all _New Spain_, and
with him many other Tyrants had the Office of Auditors confer'd upon
them:  Now they had already made such a progress toward the Desolation
of this Region, that if the _Franciscans_ had not vigorously opposed
them, and that by (the King's Council, the best and greatest Encourager
of Vertue) it had not speedily bin prevented, that which hapned to
_Hispaniola_ in Two Years, had bin the Fate of _Hispania nova_, namely
to be unpeopled, deferred, and intomb'd in its own Rules.  A Companion
of this Governour employed Eight Thousand _Indians_ in Erecting a wall
to inclose his Garden, but they all dyed, having no Supplies, nor Wages
from him, to support themselves, at whose Death he was not in the least

After the first Captain before spoken of had absolutely profliaged and
ruin'd the _Panuconians_, Fifteen Thousand whereof perished by carrying
their Bag and Baggage: At length he arriv'd at the Province of
_Machuacan_, which is Forty Miles Journey from _Mexico_, and as Fertile
and Populous: The King to honour him in the Rencounter, with a Multiple
of People, marcheth toward him, from whom he had received One Thousand
Services and Civilities very considerable, who gratefully requited him
with Captivity, because Fame had nois'd it abroad, that he was a most
Opulent Prince in Gold and Silver; and to the end he might export from,
and purge him of his Gold, he was cruciated with Torments after this
manner; his Body was extended, Hands bound to a Post, and his Feet put
into a pair of Stocks, they all the while applying burning Coals to his
Feet at a tormenting distance, where a Boy attended, who by little and
little sprinkled them with Oyl, that his Flesh might roast the better:
Before him there stood a Wicked Fellow, presenting a Bow to his Breast
charged with a Mortal Arrow, (if let fly) behind him, another with Dogs
held in with Chains, which he threatned to let loose at him, which if
done, he had bin torn to pieces in a moment; and with these kind of
Torments they racked him to extort a Confession, where his Treasures
lay; till a _Franciscan_ Monk came and deliver'd him from his Torments,
but not from Death, for he departed this miserable Life not long after:
And this was the severe Fate of many _Cacics_ and _Indian_ Lords, who
dyed with the same Torments which they were expos'd to by the
_Spaniards_, in order to the engrossing of their Gold and Sliver to

At this very time, A certain Visiter of Purses rather than Souls hapned
to be here present, who (finding some _Indian_ Idols which were hid;
for they were no better instructed in the Knowledge of the true God by
reason of the Wicked Documents and Dealings of the _Spaniards_)
detain'd Grandees as Slaves, till they had deliver'd him all their
Idols, for he phancied they were made of Gold or Silver, but his
Expectation being frustrated, he chastised them with no less Cruelty
than Injustice; and that he might not depart bubbled out of all his
hopes, constrain'd them to redeem their Idols with Money, that so they
might, according to their Custom, Adore them.  These are the Fruits of
the _Spanish_ Artifices and Juggling Tricks among the _Indians_, and
thus they promoted the honour and worship of God.

This Tyrant from _Mechuacam_ arrives at _Xalisco_, a Country abounding
with People very fruitful, and the Glory of the _Indians_ in this
respect, that it had some Towns Seven Miles long; and among other
Barbarisms equal to what you have read, which they acted here, this is
not to be forgotten, that Women big with Child, were burthen'd with the
Luggage of Wicked Christians, and being unable to go out their usual
time, through extremity of Toil and Hunger, were necessitated to bring
them forth in the High-wayes, which was the Death of many Infants.

At a certain time a profligate Christian attempted to devirginate a
Maid, but the Mother being present, resisted him, and endeavouring to
free her from his intended Rape, whereat the _Spaniard_ enrag'd, cut
off her Hand with a short Sword, and stab'd the Virgin in several
places, till she Expir'd, because she obstinately opposed and
disappointed his inordinate Appetite.

In this Kingdom of _Xalisco_ (according to report) they burnt Eight
Hundred Towns to Ashes, and for this Reason the _Indians_ growing
desperate, beholding the dayly destruction of the Remainders of their
matchless Cruelty, made an Insurrection against the _Spaniards_, slew
several of them justly and deservedly, and afterward fled to the
insensible Rocks and Mountains (yet more tender and kind than the
stony-hearted Enemy) for Sanctuary; where they were miserably Massacred
by those Tyrants who succeeded, and there are now few, or none of the
Inhabitants to be found.  Thus the _Spaniards_ being blinded with the
Lustre of their Gold, deserted by God, and given over to a Reprobate
Sense, not undrestanding (or at least not willing to do so) that the
Cause of the _Indians_ is most Just, as well by the Law of Nature, as
the Divine and Humane, they by Force of Arms, destroying them, hacking
them in pieces, and turning them out of their own Confines and
Dominions, nor considering how unjust those Violences and Tyrannies
are, wherewith they have afflicted these poor Creatures, they still
contrive to raise new Wars against them: Nay they conceive, and by Word
and Writing testifie, that those Victories they have obtain'd against
those Innocents to their ruine, are granted them by God himself, as if
their unjust Wars were promoted and managed by a just Right and Title
to what they pretend; and with boasting Joy return Thanks to God for
their Tyranny, in imitation of  those Tyrants and Robbers, of whom the
Prophet _Zechariah_ part of the Forth and Fifth Verses. _Feed the Sheep
of the slaughter, whose Possessors slay them, and hold themselves not
guilty, and they that sell them say, Blessed by the Lord, for ye are


_Of the Kingdom of _JUCATAN.

An Impious Wretch by his Fabulous Stories and Relations to the King of
_Spain_ was made praefect of the Kingdom of _Jucatan_, in the Year of
our Lord 1526; And the other Tyrants to this very day have taken the
same indirect Measures to obtain Offices, and screw or wheedle
themselves into publick Charges or Employments, for this praetext, and
Authority, they had the greater opportunity to commit Theft and Rapine.
This Kingdom was very well peopled, and both for Temperature of Air,
and the Plenty of Food and Fruits, in which respect it is more Fertile
than _Mexico_, but chiefly for Hony and Wax, it exceeds all the
_Indian_ Countries that hath hitherto bin discover'd.  It is Three
Hundred Miles in Compass.  The Inhabitants of this place do much excel
all other _Indians_, either in Politie or Prudence, or in leading a
Regular Life and Morality, truly deserving to be instructed in the
Knowledge of the true God.  Here the _Spaniards_ might have Erected
many fair Cities, and liv'd as it were in a Garden of Delights, if they
had not, through Covetousness, Stupidity, and the weight of Enormous
Crimes rendred themselves unworthy of so great a Benefit.  This Tyrant,
with Three Hundred Men began to make War with these Innocent People,
living peaceably at home, and doing injury to none, which was the ruine
of a great Number of them: Now because this Region affords no Gold; and
if it did the Inhabitants would soon have wrought away their lives by
hard working in the Mines, that so he might accumulate Gold by their
bodies and Souls, for which Christ was Crucified: For the generality he
made slaves of those whose lives he spared, and sent away such Ships as
were driven thither by the Wind of report, loaden with them, exchanging
them for Wine, Oyl, Vinegar, Salt Pork, Garments, Pack Horses and other
Commodities, which he thought most necessary and fit for his use.  He
proposed to them the choice of Fifty Virgins, and she that was the
fairest or best complexioned he bartered for a small Cask of Wine, Oyl,
Vinegar or some inconsiderable quantity of salt Pork, the same exchange
he proferred of Two or Three Hundred well-disposed Young Boys, and one
of them who had the Mind or presence of a Princes Son, was given up to
them for a Cheese, and One Hundred more for a Horse.  Thus he continued
his flagitious courses from 1526 to 1533, inclusively, till there was
news brought of the Wealth and Opulence of the Region of _Perusia_,
whither the _Spaniards_ marcht, and so for some time there was a
Cessation of this Tyranny; but in a few days after they returned and
acted enormous Crimes, robbed, and imprisoned them and committed higher
offences against the God of Heaven; nor have they ye done, so that now
these Three Hundred Miles of Land so populous (as I said before) lies
now uncultivated and almost deserted.

No Solifidian can believe the particular Narrations of their Barbarism,
and Cruelty in those Countreys.  I will only relate two or three
Stories which are fresh in my memory. The _Spaniards_ used to trace the
steps of the _Indians_, both Men and Women with curst Currs, furious
Dogs; an _Indian_ Woman that was sick hapned to be in the way in sight,
who perceiving that she was not able to avoid being torn in pieces by
the Dogs, takes a Cord that she had and hangs her self upon a Beam,
tying her Child (which she unforunately had with her) to her foot; and
no sooner had she done, yet the Dogs were at her, tearing the Child,
but a Priest coming that way Baptiz'd it before quite dead.

When the _Spaniards_ left this Kingdom, one of them invited the Son of
some _Indian_ Governour of a City or Province, to go along with him,
who told him he would not leave or desert his Native Countrey,
whereupon he threatned to cut off his ears, if he refus'd to follow
him: But the Youth persisting resolutely, that he would continue in the
place of his Nativity, he drawing his Sword cut off each Ear,
notwithstanding which he persever'd in his first opinion, and then as
if he had only pincht him, smilingly cut off his Nose and Lips.

This Rogue did lasciviously boast before a Priest, and as if he had
merited the greatest applause, commended himself to the very Heavens,
saying, "He had made it his chief Trade or Business to impregnate
_Indian_ Women, that when they were sold afterward, he might gain the
more Money by them."

In this Kingdom or (I'm certain) in some Province of New _Spain_, A
_Spaniard_ Hunting and intent on his game, phancyed that his Beagles
wanted food; and to supply their hunger snatcht a young little Babe
from the Mothers breast, cutting off his Arms and Legs, cast a part of
them to every Dog, which they having devour'd, he threw the remainder
of the Body to them.  Thus it is plainly manifest how they value these
poor Creatures, created after the image of God, to cast them to their
Canibal Curs.  But that which follows is (if possible) a sin of a
deeper dye.

I pretermit their unparallel'd Impieties, _&c._ and only close all with
this one Story that follows.  Those haughty obdurate and execrable
Tyrants, who departed from this Countrey to Fish for Riches in
_Perusia_, and four Monks of the Order of St. _Francis_, with Father
_James_ who Travelled thither also to keep the Countrey in Peace, and
attract or mildly perswade by their Preaching the remnant of
Inhabitants, that had outlived a septennial Tyranny, to embrace the
knowledge of Christ.  I conceive these are the persons who in the year
1534, Travelling by _Mexico_ were sollicited by several Messengers from
the _Indians_, to come into their Countrey, and inform them in the
knowledge of one God, the true God, and Lord of the whole World: to
this end they appointed Assemblies and Councils to examine and
understand what Men they were, who called themselves Fathers and
Friers, what they intended and what difference there was between them
and the _Spaniards_, by whom they had been so molested and tormented:
but they received them at length upon this condition that they should
be admitted alone, without any _Spaniards_, which the Fathers promised;
for they had permission, nay an express Mandate from the President of
New _Spain_ to make that promise, and that the _Spaniards_ should not
do them the least detriment or injury. Then they began, to Preach the
Gospel of Christ, and to explicate and declare the pious intention of
the King of  _Castile_, of all which they had notice by the _Spaniards_
for seven years together, that they had no King nor no other but him,
who oppressed them with so much Tyranny.  The Priests continued there
but forty days, but behold they bring forth all their Idols to be
committed to the flames; and then their Children which they tendred as
the apple of the Eye, that they might be instructed.  They also erected
Temples and Houses for them and they were desired to come to other
Provinces and Preach the Gospel, and introduce them into the knowledge
of God, and the Great (as they stiled him) King of _Castile_: And the
Priests perswasions wrought so effectually on them, that they
condescended to that which was never done in _India_ before (for
whatsoever those Tyrants who wasted and consumed these large Kingdoms
and Provinces, did misrepresent and falsifie, was only done to bring an
odium and disgrace upon the _Indians_).  For Twelve or Fifteen Princes
of spatious and well-peopled Regions assembled, every one distinct and
separate from the rest, with his own subjects, and by their unanimous
consent upon Council and Advice, of their own accord sumitted
themselves to the Government of the _Castilian_ Kings and accepted of
them as their Prince and Protector, obliging themselves to obey and
serve them as subjects to their Lawful Liege Lord.

In Witness whereof I have in my custody, a certain Instrument Signed
and Attested by the aforesaid Religioso's.

Thus to the great joy and hope of these Priests reducing them to the
knowledge of Christ they were received by the Inhabitants of this
Kingdom, that surviv'd the heat and rage of the Spanish Cruelties: but
behold eighteen Horse and Twelve Footmen by another way crept in among
them, bringing with them many Idols, which were of great weight, and
taken out of other Regions by Force.  The Commander in chief of these
_Spaniards_ summoned one of the Dynasts or Rulers of that Province
which they entred into, to appear before him, and command him to take
these Idols with him, distribute them through his Countrey and exchange
every single Idol for an _Indian_ Man or Woman, otherwise he would make
War against him.  The abovesaid Lord compelled to it by fear did so
accordingly with a command, that his Subjects should adore Worship and
Honour them, and in compensation send Indians Male and Female into
servitude. The terrified People delivered up their Children, and by
this means there was an end made of this Sacrilegious Merchandize, and
thus the _Casic_ satisfied the greedy desires of the (I dare not say
Christian) _Spaniards_.  One of these Sacrilegious Robbers was _John
Garcia_ by name, who being very sick and at the point of dath, had
several Idols hid under his Bed, and calling his _Indians_ that waited
on him, as a Nurse, commanded her not to part with those Idols at a
small rate for they were of the better sort, and that she should not
dispose of them without one _Indian_, for each Idol by way of Barter.
Thus by this his private and Nuncupative last Will and Testament
distracted with these carking cares, he gave up the Ghost: And who is
it that will not fear his being tormented in the darkest and lowest
Hell?  Let us now consider what progress in Religion the _Spaniards_
made, and what examples of Christianism they gave, at their first
arrival in _America_, how devoutly they honoured God, and what expence
of sweat and toil they were at to promote his Worship and Adoration
among the Infidels.  Let it be also taken into serious consideration,
whose sin is the greater, either _Joroboam's_, who made all _Israel_ to
sin, and caused two Golden Calves to be erected, or the _Spaniards_ who
traffick and Trade in Idols like _Judas_, who was the occasion of such
great scandals.  These are the good Deeds of the Spanish _Dons_, who
often, nay very often to feed their Avarice, and accumulate Gold have
sold and still do sell, denied and still do deny Jesus Christ our

The _Indians_ now findint the Promises of the Religious, that the
_Spaniards_ should not enter into this Countrey, null and void; nay
that the Spaniards brought Idols from other places to be put off there;
when as they had delivered up their own to the Priests to be burnt,
that there might be only Worship of the true God established among
them; they were highly incensed against these Friars, and addressed
themselves to them in these Words following: Why have you deceived us,
binding your promises with false protestations, that the Spaniards
shoudl not be admitted to come hither?  And why have you burnt our
Gods, when others are brought from other Regions by the Spaniards?  Are
the Gods of other Provinces more sacred than ours?  The Friers as well
as they could (though they had little to return in answer) endevour'd
by soft Language to appease them; and went to these Thirty Spaniards,
declaring the evil actions they were guilty of, humbly supplicating
them to withdraw themselves from that place.  Which they would by no
means condescend to, and what is most flagitious and wicked perswaded
the _Indians_, that they were introduc'd by those Priests;  Which being
made known to them, These _Indians_ resolved to be the death of these
Monks, but having notice thereof by some courteous _Indians_, they
stole away from thence by night, and fled; but after their departure
the truth of the matter and the Spanish Malice being understood; they
sent several Messengers who followed them fifty Miles distant
beseeching them in the name of the _Indians_, to return and begging
pardon for that ignorant mistake.

The Priests relying on their words, returned, and were caress'd like
Angels sent from Heaven; and continued with them, (from whom they
received a Thousand kindnesses) four or five months.  But when the
Spaniards persisted in their resolution not to quit the place, although
they Vice-Roy did use all endeavours and fair means to recall them,
they were Proclaim'd Traitors, guilty of High Treason; and because they
continued still exercising Tyranny and perpetrated nefandous Crimes,
the Priests were sensible they would study revenge, though it might be
some considerable time before they put it in execution, fearing that it
might fail upon their own heads, and since they could not exercise the
function of their Ministry securely and undisturbed by reason of the
continual Incursions and Assaults made by the Spaniards, they consulted
about their departure, and did leave this Kingdom accordingly which
remain'd destitute of all Christian Doctrin and these poor Souls are at
this day involv'd in the obscurity of their former Misery and
Ignorance, they being deprived by these accursed Spaniards, of all
hopes of remedy, and the irrigatioon of Divine knowledge, just like
young withering Plants for want of Water: for in that very juncture of
time, when these Religioso's took leave, they embraced the Doctrine of
our Faith with the greatest Fervency and Eagerness imaginable.


_Of the Province of St. _MARTHA.

The Province of St. _Martha_ was rich in the Neighbouring Golden Mines,
and a fruitful Soil, nay the People were very expert and industrious in
those Mine-works: Upon this Account, or Temptation it was, that from
the Year 1540, to 1542, abundance of Tyrants sailed thither, laying
waste the whole Country by their Depredations, slaughtering the
Inhabitants at a prodigious and bloody rate; and robbing them of all
their Gold, who dayly fled to their Ships for Refuge, moving sometime
to one place, and sometime to another. And thus those Provinces were
laid waste, the greatest Outrages being committed on the Sea-shore,
which lasted till the Year 1523, whither the _Spaniards_ then came to
seat themselves, and fis their intended Habitation.  And becuase it is
a plentiful Region and Opulent withal; it was subjected to several
Rulers, who like Infernal Fiends contended who should obtain the Palm,
by out-staining the Sword of his Predecessor in Innocent Blood;
insomuch, that from the Year 1529 to this very day, they have wasted
and spoiled as much good ground as extended Five Hundred Miles, and
unpeopled the Countrey.

If I design'd to enumerate all the Impieties, Butcheries, Desolations,
Iniquities, Violences, Destructions and other the Piacula and black
Enormities committed and perpetrated by the _Spaniards_ in this
Province, against God, the King, and these harmless Nations; I might
compile a Voluminous History, and that shall be compleated, if God
permit my Glass to run longer, in his good time.  It may suffice for
the present to relate some passages  written in a Letter to our King
and Lord by a Revernd Bishop of these Provinces, Dated the 20th of
_May, An. Dom._ 1541. wherein among other matters he thus words it.

 I must acquaint your Sacred Majesty, that the only way to succour and
 support this tottering Region is to free it from the Power of a Father
 in Law, and marry it to a Husband who will treat her as she ought to be,
 and lovingly entertain her, and that must be done with all possible
 Expedition too, if not, I am certain that she will suddenly decay and
 come to nothing by the covetous and sordid Deportment of the Governours,
 _&c._  And a little after he writes thus, By this Means your Majesty
 will plainly know and understand how to depose the Prefects or Governours
 of those Regions from their Office if they deserve it, that so they may
 be alleviated and eas'd of such Burthens; which if not perform'd, in
 my Opinion, the Body Politick will never recover its Health.  And this I
 will make appear to your Majesty that they are not Christians, but Devils;
 not Servants of God and the King, but Traitors to the King and Laws,
 who are Conversant in those Regions.  And in reality nothing can be more
 obstructive to those that live peacably, then Inhumane and Barbarous
 Usage, which they, who lead a quiet and peacable Life, too frequently
 undergo, and this is so fastidious and nauseous to them, that there can
 be nothing in the World so odious and detestable among them, as the
 Name of a Christian: for they term the Christians in their Language
 _Yares_, that is, Devils; and in truth are not without reason; for
 the Actions of those that reside in these Regions, are not such as
 speak them to be Christians or Men, gifted with Reason, but absolute
 Devils; hence it is, that the _Indians_, perceiving these Actions
 committed by the Heads as well as Members, who are void of all Compassion
 and Humanity, do judge the Christian Laws to be of the same strain and
 temper, and that their God and King are the Authors of such Enormities:
 Now to endeavour to work upon them a contrary perswasion is to no purpose;
 for this would afford them a greater Latitude and Liberty to deride
 Jesus Christ and his Laws.  Now the _Indians_ who protect and defend
 themselves by force of Arms, think it more eligible, and far better to
 dye once, than suffer several and many Deaths under the _Spanish_ Power.
 This I know experimentally, Most Invicible _Casar_, &c.  And he adds
 farther, Your Majesty is more Powerful in Subjects and Servants, who
 frequent these Kingdoms, then you can imagin. Nor is there one Soldier
 among them all, who does not publickly and openly profess, if he robs,
 steals, spoils, kills, burns His Majesties Subjects, 'tis to purchase
 Gold: He will not say that he therein does your Majesty great Service,
 for they affirm they do it to obtain their own Share and Dividend.
 Wherefore, Most Invincible _Casar_, it would be a very prudential Act
 for your Majesty to testifie by a rigid Correction and severe Punishment
 of some Malefactors, that it is disservice to you for your Subjects to
 commit such Evil Acts, as tend to the Disobedience and Dishonour of the

What you have read hitherto is the Relation of the said Bishop of St.
_Martha_, Epitomized and Extracted from his Letters, whereby it is
manifest, how Savagely they handle these mild and affable People.  They
term them Warlike _Indians_, who betake themselves to the Mountains to
secure themselves from _Spanish_ Cruelty; and call them Country
_Indians_, or Inhabitants, who by a dreadful Massacre are delivered up
to Tyrannical and Horrible Servitude, whereby at length they are become
depopulated, made desolate, and utterly destroy'd; as appears by the
Epistle of the praementioned Bishop, who only gives us a slight Account
or Essay of their persecution and Sufferings.  The _Indians_ of this
Country use to break out into such Words as these, when they are
driven, loaded like Brutes through the uncouth wayes in their Journeys
over the Mountains, if they happen to faint through Weakness, and
miscarry through extremity of Labour, (for then they are kicked and
cudge'd, their Teeth dasht out with the Pummels of their Swords to
raise them up again, when tired and fallen under weighty Burthens, and
force them to go on without Respiration, or Time to take Breath, and
all this with the following increpation, or upbraiding and taunting
words, _O what a wicket Villain art thou?_)  I say they burst out into
these Expressions, I am absolutely tir'd, kill me, I desire to dye,
being weary of my Life as well as my Burthen and Journey: And this not
without deep Heart-breaking Sighs, they being scarce able to draw or
breathe out their words, which are the Characteristical Notes, and
infallible of the Mind drowned in Anguish and Sorrow.  My it please our
Merciful God to order the discovery of these Crimes to be manifested to
those Persons, who are able and oblig'd to redress them.


_Of the Province of_ CARTHAGENA.

This Province is distant Fifty Miles from the Isle of St. _Martha_
Westward, and situated on the Confines of the Country of _Cenusia_,
from whence it extends One Hundred Miles to the Bay of _Uraba_, and
contains a very long Tract of Land _Southward_.  These Provinces from
the Year 1498 to this present time were most barbarously us'd, and made
desert by Murder and Slaughter, but that I may the sooner conclude this
brief summary.  I will not handle the particulars, to the end I may the
better give an Account of the detestable Villanies that ruin'd other


_Of the _Pearl-Coast, PARIA, _and_ TRINITY-ISLE.

The _Spaniards_ made great Spoils and Havock from the _Parian_ Coast to
the Bay of _Venecuola_, exclusively, which is about Two Hundred Miles.
It can hardly be exprest by Tongue or Pen how many, and how great
Injuries and Injustices, the Inhabitants of this Sea-shore have endur'd
from the year 1510, to this day.  I will only relate Two or Three
Piacular and Criminal Acts of the First Magnitude, capable of
comprehending all other Enormities that deserve the sharpest Torments,
Wit and Malice can invent, and so make way for a deserved Judgment upon

A Nameless Pirate of the Year 1510, accompanied with a parcel of Sixty
or Seventy, arriv'd at _Trinity-Island_, which exceeds _Sicile_, both
in Amplitude and Fertility, and is contiguous to the Continent on that
side where it toucheth upon _Paria_, whose Inhabitants, according to
their Quality, are more addicted to Probity and Vertue, than the rest
of the _Indians_; who immediately published an Edict, that all the
Inhabitants should come and cohabit with them.  The _Indian_ Lords and
Subjects gave them a Debonair and Brotherly Reception, serving them
with wonderful Alacrity, furnishing them with dayly Provisions in so
plentiful a manner, that they might have sufficed a more numerous
Company; for it is the Mode among _Indians_ of this New World, to
supply the _Spaniards_ very bountifuly with all manner of Necessaries.
A short time after the _Spaniards_ built a stately House, which was an
Appartment for the _Indians_, that they might accomplish their
praemeditated Designs, which was thus effected.  When they were to
thatch it, and had rais'd it two Mens height, they inclos'd several of
them there, to expedite the Work, as they pretended, but in truth that
they who were within, might not see those without; thus part of them
surrounded the House with Sword in Hand that no one should stir out,
and part of them entred it, and bound the _Indians_, menacing them with
Death, if they offered to move a Foot; and if any one endeavoured to
escape, he was presently hackt in pieces; but some of them partly
wounded, and partly unwounded getting away, with others who went not
into the House, about One Hundred and Two Hundred, betook themselves to
another House with Bows and Arrows; and when they were all there, the
_Spaniards_ secur'd the Doors, throwing in Fire at another place, and
so they all perished.  From hence they set Sail to the Island of St.
_John_ with near upon One Hundred and Eighty Slaves, whom they had
bound, where they sold one half of them, and thence to _Hispaniola_,
where they dispos'd of the rest.  Now when I taxed this Captain with
Wickedness and Treachery in the very Isle of St. _John_, he dismist me
with this Answer; _Forbear good Sir._  I had this in commission from
those who sent me hither, that I should surprize them by the spetious
pretense of Peace, whom I could not sieze by open Force, and in truth
this same Captain told me with his own Mouth, that in _Trinity-Isle_
alone, he had met with a Father and Mother in Civil usage, which he
uttered to his greater Confusion and the aggravation of his Sins.  The
Monks of our Order of St. _Dominic_ on a certain time held a Consult
about sending one of their Fraternity into this Island, that by their
Preaching they might instruct them in the Christian Faith, and teach
them the way to be sav'd, of which they were wholly Ignorant.  And to
this end they sent thither a Religious and Licentiate in Theologie, (or
Doctor in Divinity, as we term it among us) a Man Famous for his Vertue
and Holiness with a _Laic_ his Associate, to visit the Country,
converse with the Inhabitants, and find out the most convenient places
for the Erection of Monasteries.  As soon as they were arriv'd
according to custom, they were entertain'd like Coelestial Messengers,
with great Affection, Joy and Respect, as well as they could, for they
were ignorant of their Tongue, and so made use of signs, for the
present.  It hapned that after the departure of that Vessel that
brought these Religious Men, another came into the Port, whose Crew
according to their Hellish Custom, fraudulently, and unknown to the
Religious brought away a Prince of that Province as Captive, who was
call'd _Alphonsus_, (for they are ambitious of a Christian Name,) and
forthwith desire without farther Information, that he would Baptize
him: But the said Lord _Alphonsus_ was deceitfully overperswaded to go
on board of them with his Wife and about Seventeen more, pretending
that they would give hime a Collation; which the Prince and they did,
for he was confident, that the Religious would by no means suffer himo
be abus'd, for he had no so much Confidence in the _Spaniards_; but as
soon as they were upon Deck, the perfidious Rogues, set Sail for
_Hispaniola_, where they were sold as Slaves.  The whole Country being
extreamly discompos'd, and understanding that their Prince and Princess
were violently carried away, addressed themselves to these Religioso's,
who were in great danger of losing their Lives: But they being made to
understand this unjust Action, were extraordinarily afflicted, and 'tis
probable would have suffered Death, rather than permit the _Indians_ to
be so injuriously dealt with, which might prove an Obstruction to their
receiving of, and believing in God's Word.  Yet the _Indians_ were
sedated by the promises of the Religious; for they told them, they
would send Letters by the first Ship that was bound for _Hispaniola_,
whereby they would procure the Restitution and Return of their Lord and
his Retinue.  It pleased God to send a Ship thither forthwith, to the
greater confirming of the Governours Damnation, where in the Letters
they sent to the Religious of _Hispaniola_, Letters containing repeated
Exclamations and Protestations, and protest against such Actions, but
those that received them denyed them Justice, for that they were
partakers of that Prey, made of those _Indians_ so injustly and
impiously captivated.  But when the Religious, who had engag'd to the
Inhabitants, that their Lord _Alphonsus_ should be restor'd within Four
Moneths, and found that neither in Four, nor Eight Moneths he was
return'd, they prepar'd themselves for Death, and to deliver up their
Life to Christ, to whom they had offer'd it before their departure from
_Spain_: Thus the Innocent _Indians_ were revenged on the Innocent
Priests; for they were of Opinion, that the Religious had a hand in the
Plot, partly, because they found their Promises that their Lord should
return within Four Moneths, ineffectual, and partly because the
Inhabitants made no difference between a Religious Frier and a
_Spanish_ Rogue.  At another time it fell out likewise, through the
Rampant Tyrrany and Cruel Deeds of evil-minded Christians, that the
_Indians_ put to Death two _Dominican_ Friers, of which I am a faithful
Witness, escaping my self, not without a very great Miracle, which
Transaction I resolve silently to pass over, lest I should terrifie the
Reader with the Horror of the Fact.

In these Provinces, there was a City seated on the Bay of _Codera_,
whose Lord was call'd _Higueroto_, a Name, either proper to Persons or
common to the Rulers of that Place.  A _Cacic_ of such signal Clemency,
and his Subjects of such noted Vertue, that the _Spaniards_ who came
thither, were extraordinarily welcom, furnished with Provisions,
enjoying Peace and Comfort, and no Refreshment wanting: But a
perfidious Wretch got many of them on board, and sold them to the
Islanders of St. _John_.  At the same time I landed upon that Island,
where I obtained a sight of this Tyrant, and heard the Relation of his
Actions.  He utterly destroy'd that Land, which the rest of the
_Spaniards_ took very unkindly at his Hands, who frequently playd the
Pirate, and rob'd on that shore, detesting it as a wicked thing,
because they had lost that place, where they use to be treated with as
great Hospitality and Freedom, as if they had been under their own
Roof: Nay they transported from this place, among them, to the Isles of
_Hispaniola_ and St. _John_ Two Millions of Men and upward, and made
the Coast a Desert.

It is most certainly true, that they never ship off a Vessel freighted
with _Indians_, but they pay a third part as Tribute to the Sea,
besides those who are slaughter'd, when found in their own Houses.  Now
the Soarce and Original of all this is the ends they have propos'd to
themselves.  For there is a necessity of taking with them a great
number of _Indians_, that they may gain a great sum of Mony by their
Sale, now the Ships are very slenderly furnished with Provisions and
Water in small Quantity, to satisfie few, left the Tyrants, who are
term'd Owners or Proprietors of Ships should be at too great expence in
Victualling their Vessels, nay they scarce carry Food enough with them
to maintain the _Spaniards_ that manage the Vessel, which is the reason
so many _Indians_ dye with Hunger and Thirst, and of necessity they
must be thrown over-board: Nay one of them told me this for a Truth,
that there being such a Multitude of Men thus destroy'd, a Ship may
sail from the Isle of _Lucaya_ to _Hispaniola_, which is a Voyage of
Twenty Leagues and upward, without Chart or Compass, by the sole
Direction or Observation of dead fluctuating Carkasses.

But afterward, when arriv'd, and driven up into the Isle whither they
are brought to be sold, there is no Person that is in some small
measure compassionate, but would be extreamly mov'd and discompos'd at
the sight; _viz._ to spie old Men and Women, together with Naked
Children half starv'd.  Then they separate Parents from Children, Wives
from their Husbands, about Ten or Twenty in a Company, and cast lots
for them, that the Detestable Owners of the Ships may have their share;
who prepare Two or Three Ships, and equip them as a Fleet of Pirates,
going ashore ravaging and forcing Men out of their Houses, and then
robbing them: But when the lot of any one of them falls upon a parcel,
that hath an aged or diseased Man; the Tyrant, whose Allotment he is,
usually bursts out, as followeth. Let this old Fellow be Damm'd, why do
you bestow him upon me; must I, think you; be at the charge of his
Burial?  And this sickly Wretch, how comes he to be one of my alloted
portion must I take care for his cure?  Not I.  Hence you may guess
what estimate and value the _Spaniards_ put upon _Indians_, and whether
they practise and fulful that Divine and Heavenly precept injoyning
mutual Love and Society.

There can be nothing more cruel and detestable then the Tyrannical
usage of the _Spaniards_ towards the _Indians_ in their Pearl-Fishing;
for the Torments undergone in the unnatural Exenteration and tearing
out with Paracidal hands the richer bowels of our common Mother, or the
inward cruciating racks of the most profligate, Heaven daring
_Desperado_ can admit of no comparison with these, although the
extracting or digging for Gold is one of the sharpest subterranean
Drudgeries, they plunge them down four or five ells deep under Water,
where swimming about without breathing, they eradicate and pull up
Oisters, wherein the Pearls are engendred.  Sometimes they rise up to
the superfities of the Water with Nets full of Oisters for respiration
and Air, but if these miserable Creatures stay but a little more then
is Ordinary to rest themselves the Hangman is immediately upon them in
a _Canow_ or small Boat, who beating them with many stripes drag them
by the hair of the head under Water, that they may drudge again at
their expilcation or Pearl Fishing.  Their Food is Fish, and the same
which contains the Pearls and _Cassabus_ made of Roots with a few
_Mahids_, the Bread of that Countrey; in the former there is little or
no nutriment or substance, and the other is not made without great
trouble, nor for all this have they a sufficient allowance thereof to
support nature.  Their Lodging or Bed is the Earth confined to a pair
of Stocks, for fear that they should run away: And it frequently
happens that they are drown'd with the toil of this kind of Fishing and
never more seen, for the _Tuberoms_ and _Maroxi_ (certain Marine
Monsters that devour a complete proportioned Man wholly at once) prey
upon them under Water.  You must consider withall, that it is
impossible for the strongest constitution to continue long under Water
without breathing, and they ordinarily dye through the extream rigor of
the Cold, spitting Blood which is occasioned by the too great
compression of the Breast, procreated by a continued holding breath
under Water, for by too much cold a profluvium of blood follows.  Their
hair naturally black is changed into a combust, burnt or Sun-colour
like that of the Sea Wolves, their shoulders and backs covered, or
overspread with a saltish humor that they appear rather like Monsters
in humane shape then Men.

They have destroy'd all the _Lucayans_ by this intolerable or rather
Diabolical exercise, for the accustomary emolument or gain of lucre,
and by this means gain'd the value of fifty, sometime one hundred
Crowns of every individual _Indian_.  They sell them (though it is
prohibited) publickly; for the _Lucayans_ were excellent Swimmers, and
several perished in this Isle that came from other Provinces.


_Of the River_ Yuya Pari.

This River washeth the Province arising from its head or fountain in
another Region, Two Hundred miles off and better, By this a wretched
Tyrant entred it and laid waste the Land for the space of many miles,
and murder'd abundance of them by Fire and Sword, _&c._ At length he
died violently, and all his Forces moldred away of themselves, many
succeeded him in his iniquity and cruelty and so dayly destroy them,
sending to Hell the Souls redeemed by the blood of the Son of God.


_Of the Kingdom of _Venecuela.

Our Sovereign Lord the King in the Year 1526, over-perswaded by
fallacious appearances (for the _Spaniards_ use to conceal from His
Majesties knowledge the dammages and detriments, which God himself, the
Souls and state of the _Indians_ did suffer) intrusted the Kingdom of
_Venecuela_ longer and larger then the Spanish Dominions, with its
Government and absolute Jurisdiction to some _German_ Merchants, with
power to make certain Capitulations and Conventions, who came into this
Kingdom with Three Hundred Men, and there found a benign mild and
peaceable people, as they were throughout the _Indies_ till injured by
the _Spaniards_.  These more cruel then the rest beyond comparison,
behav'd themselves more inhumanely then rapacious Tygres Wolves and
Lyons, for they had the jurisdiction of this Kingdom, and therefore
possessing it with the greater freedom from controul; lay in wait and
were the more vigilant with greater care and avarice to understand the
practical part of heaping up Wealth, and robbing the Inhabitants of
their Gold and Sliver, surpassing all their Predecessors in those
indirect ways, rejecting wholly both the fear of their God and King,
nay forgetting that they were born men with reasonable Faculties.

These incarnate Devils laid waste and desolate Four Hundred miles of
most Fertile Land, containing vast and wonderful Provinces, most
spatious and large Valleys surrounded with Hills, forty Miles in
Length, and many Towns richly abounding in Gold and Silver.  They
destroy'd so many and such considerable Regions, that there is not one
supernumerary witness left to relate the Story, unless perchance some
that lurkt in the Caverns and Womb of the Earth to evade death by their
inhumane Swords embrew'd in Innocent _Indian_ blood, escaped.  I judge
that they by new invented and unusual Torments ruinated four or five
Millions of Souls and sent them all to Hell.  I will give a taste of
two or three of their Transactions, that hereby you may guess at the

They made the supream Lord of the Province a Slave, to squeeze his Gold
from him, racking him to extort his confession who escaping fled into
the Mountains, their common Sanctuary, and his Subjects lying absconded
in the Thickets of the Woods, were stir'd up to Sedition and Tumult or
Mutiny.  The _Spaniards_ follow and destroy many of them, but those
that were taken alive and in their power were all publickly sold for
Slaves by the Common Crier.

They were in all Provinces they came into entertained and welcomed by
the _Indians_ with Songs, Dances and Rich Presents but Rewarded very
ungratefully with bloodshed and Slaughter.  The German Captain and
Tyrant caused several of them to be clapt into a  Thatcht House, and
there cut in pieces; but some of them to avoid falling by their bloody
and merciless Swords, climb'd up to the beams and Rafters of the House,
and the Governour, hearing it (O cruel Brute?) commanded Fire to be put
to it and burnt them all alive, leaving the Region desert and desolate.

They also came to another stately Province, bordering on St. _Martha_;
whose inhabitants did them many egregious and notable services,
bestowing on them innumerable quantities of Gold besides many other
gifts, but when they were upon departure, in retribution of their Civil
Treating and Deportment the German Tyrant, commanded that all the
Indians, with their Wives and Children if possible, should be taken
into Custody; inclosed in some large capacious place, and that there it
should be signified unto them, whosoever desired to be set at Liberty
should redeem himself at the Will and Pleasure (as to price;) of the
unjust Governour, or at a certain rate imposed upon himself, his wife
and every Childs head; and to expedite the business prohibited the
administration or allowance of any food to them, till the Gold required
for Redemption was paid down to the utmost grain.  Several of them sent
home to discharge the demanded price of their Redemption, and procur'd
their Freedom, as well as they could by one means or other, that so
they might return to their Livelihood and profession, but not long
after he sent other Rogues and Robbers among them to enslave those that
were Redeemed.

To the same Gaol they are brought a second time, being instigated or
rather constrained to a speedy Redemption by hunger and thirst; Thus
many of them were twice or thrice taken, captiv'd and Redeedmed; but
some who were not capable of Depositing such a sum, perished there.
Farthermore this Tyrant was big with an itching desire after the
discovery of the _Perusian_ Mines, which he did accomplish.  Nay should
I enumerate the particular Cruelties, Slaughters, _&c._ committed by
him though my discourse would not in the least be contrariant to the
Truth, yet it would not be beleived and only stupifie and amaze the

This course the other Tyrants took who set sail from _Venecuela_ and
St. _Martha_ (with the same Resolution of detecting the _Perusian_
Golden, Consecrated Houses as them they esteemed) who found the
fruitful Region so desolate, deserted, and wasted by Fire and Sword,
that those Cruel Tyrants themselves were smitten with wonder and
astonishment at the traces and ruins of such prodigious Devastations.

All these things and many more were prov'd by Witness in the _Indian_
Exchequer, and the Records of their Testimony were entred in that
Court, though these execrable Tyrants burnt many of them that there
might be little or nothing prov'd as a cause of those great
Devastations and Evils perpetrated by them.  For the Minister of
Justice who have hitherto lived in _India_, through their obscure and
damnable blindness, were not much sollicitous about the punishment of
the Crimes and Butcheries which have been and are still committed by
these Tyrants, only they may say possibly because such a one, and such
a one hath wickedly and barbarously dealt with the _Indians_, that is
the reason so great a summ of Crowns in Money is diminished already or
retrenched from His Majesties Annual Revenue, and this general and
confused proof is sufficient (as they worthily conceive) to purge or
repress such great and hainous Crimes.  And though they are but few,
are not verified as they ought to be, nor do they attribute and lay
upon them that stress and weight as they ought to do, for if they did
perform their Duty to God and the King; it could not be made apparent
as it may be, that these _German_ Tyrants have cheated and rob'd the
King of Three Millions of Gold and upward; and thus these Enemies to
God and the King began to depopulate these Regions and destroy them,
cheating his Majesty of Two Millions of Gold _per Annum_, nor can it be
expected, that the Detriment done to his Majesty can possibly be
retriev'd, as long as the Sun and moon endures, unless God by a Miracle
should raise as many Thousands from Death to Life, as have bin
destroy'd.  And these are the Temporal Dammages the King suffers.  It
would be also a Work worthy the inquiry into, to consider how many
cursed Sacriledges and Indignities God himself hath been affronted with
to the dishonour of his Name.  And what Recompence can be made for the
loss of so many Souls as are now tormented in Hell by the Cruelty and
Covetousness of these Brutish _German_ Tyrants.  But I will conclude
all their Impiety and Barbarisme with one Example, _viz._  That from
the time they entred upon this Country to this very day, that is,
Seventeen Years, they have remitted many Ships fraighted with _Indians_
to be sold as Slaves to the Isles of St. _Martha, Hispaniola, Jamaica,_
and St. _John_, selling a Million of Persons at the least, I speak
modestly, and still do expose to Sale to this very Year of our Lord
1542, the King's Council in this Island seeing and knowing it, yet what
they find to be manifest and apparent they connive at, permit and
countenance, and wink at the horrid Impieties and Devastations
innumerable which are committed on the Coasts of this Continent,
extending Four Hundred Miles in Length, and continues still together
with _Venecuela_ and St. _Martha_ under their Jurisdiction, which they
might easily have remedied and timely prevented.

_Of the Provinces of_ FLORIDA

Three Tyrants at several times made their entrance into these Provinces
since the Year 1510, or 1511, to act those Crimes which others, and two
of these Three made it their sole business to do in other Regions, to
the end, that they might advance themselves to higher Dignities and
Promotions than they could deserve, by the Effusion of Blood and
Destruction of these People; but at length they all were cut off by a
violent Death, and the Houses which they formerly built and erected
with the cement of Human Blood, (which I can sufficiently testifie of
these three) perished with them, and their memory roten, and as
absolutely washed away from off the Face of the Earth, as if they had
never had a being. These Men deserted these Regions, leaving them in
great distraction and confusion, nor were they branded with less notes
of infamy, by the certain Slaughters they perpetrated, though they were
but few in number than the rest.  For the Just God cut them off before
they did much Mischief, and reserv'd the Castigation and Revenge of
those Evils which I know, and was an Eye-Witness of, to this very Time
and Place.  As to the Fourth Tyrant, who lately, that is, in the Year
1538, came hither well-furnished with Men and Ammunition, we have
received no account these Three Years last past; but wer are very
confident, that he, at his first Arrival, acted like a bloody Tyrant,
even to extasie and madness, if he be still alive with his Follower,
and did injure, destroy, and consume a vast Number of Men (for he was
branded with infamous Cruelty above all those who with their Assistants
committed Crimes and Enormities of the first Magnitude in these
Kingdoms and Provinces) I conceive, God hath punished him with the same
Violent Death, as he did other Tyrants: But because my Pen is wearied
with relating such Execrable and Sanguinary Deeds (not of Men but
Beasts) I will trouble my self no longer with the dismal and fatal
Consequences thereof.

These People were found by them to be Wise, Grave, and well dispos'd,
though their usual Butcheries and Cruelties in opressing them like
Brutes, with heavy Burthens, did rack their minds with great Terror and
Anguish.  At their Entry into a certain Village, they were welcomed
with great Joy and Exultation, replenished them with Victuals, till
they were all satisfied, yielding up to them above Six Hundred Men to
carry their Bag and Baggage, and like Grooms to look after their
Horses: The _Spaniards_ departing thence, a Captain related to the
Superiour Tyrant returned thither to rob this (no ways diffident or
mistrustful) People, and pierced their King through with a Lance, of
which Wound he dyed upon the Spot, and committed several other
Cruelties into the bargain.  In another Neighboring Town, whose
Inhabitants they thought, were more vigilant and watchful, having had
the News of their horrid Acts and Deeds, they barbarously murdered them
all with their Lances and Swords, destroying all, Young and Old, Great
and Small, Lords and Subject without exception.

The Chief Tyrant caused many _Indians_ (above Two Hundred as 'tis
noised abroad) whom he summon'd to appear before him out of another
town, or else, who came voluntarily to pay their Respects to him, to
have their Noses and Lips to the very Beard, cut off; and thus in this
grievous and wretched Condition, the Blood gushing out of their Wounds,
return'd them back, to give an Infallible Testimony of the Works and
Miracles wrought by these Preachers and Ministers baptized in the
Catholick Faith.

Now let all Men judge what Affection and love they bear to
Christianity; to what purpose, or upon what account they believe there
is a God, whom they preach and boast of to be Good and Just, and that
his Law which they profess (and indeed only profess) to be pure and
immaculate.  The Mischiefs acted by these profligate Wretches and Sons
of Perdition were of the deepest die.  At last this Captain devoted to
Perdition dyed impenitent, nor do we in the least question, but that he
is overwhelmed and buried in Darkness Infernal, unless God according to
his Infinite Mercy and boundless Clemency, not his own Merits, (he
being contaminated and poison'd with Execrable Deeds,) be pleas'd to
compassionate and have Mercy upon him.

_Of the_ Plate-River, _that is, the _Silver-River.

Some Captains since the Year 1502 to 1503 undertook Four or Five
Voyages to the River of Plate, which embraceth within its own Arms
great Kingdoms and Provinces, and is peopled by rational and
well-temper'd Inhabitants.  In the general we are certified, that they were
very injurious and bloody to them; but they being far distant from
those _Indians_, we frequently discourse of, wer are not able to give
you a particular account of their Transactions.  Yet beyond all
Controversie, they did, and still do go the same way to work, as others
in several Regions to this present time do, and have done; for they are
the same, (and many in number too) _Spaniards_ who went thither, that
were the wicked Instruments of other Executions, and all of them aim at
one and the same thing, namely to grow Rich and Wealthy, which they can
never be, unless they steer the same Course which others have followed,
and tread the same paths in Murdering, Robbing and Destroying poor

After I had committed to Writing what I have prementioned, it was told
me for a great Truth, that they had laid waste in those Countreys great
Kingdoms and Provinces, dealing Cruelly and Bloodily with these
harmless People, at a horrid rate, having a greater Opportunity and
Convenience to be more Infamous and Rigid to them, then others, they
being very remote from _Spain_, living inordinatly, like Debauches,
laying aside, and bidding farewel to all manner of Justice, which is
indeed a Stranger in all the _American_ Regions, as is manifest by what
hath been said already.  But among the other Numerous Wicked Acts
following this is one that may be read in the _Indians_ Courts.  One of
the Governours commanded his Soldiers to go to a certain Village, and
if they denyed them Provisions, to put all the Inhabitants to the
Sword: By Vertue of this Authority away they march, and because they
would not yield to them above Five Thousand Men as Enemies, fearing
rather to be seen, then guilty of Illiberality, were cut off by the
Sword.  Also a certain number of Men living in Peace and Tranquillity
proffered their services to him; who, as it fell out, were call'd
before the Governour, but deferring their appearance a little longer
than ordinary, that he might infix their minds with a remark of
horrible Tyranny, he commanded, they should be deliver'd up, as
Prisoners to their Mortal _Indian_ Enemies, who beg'd with loud
Clamours and a Deluge of Tears, that they might be dispatcht out of
this World by their own Hands, rather than be given up as a prety to
the Enemy; yet being resolute, they would not depart out of the House
wherein they were, so the _Spaniards_ hackt them in pieces Limb by
Limb, who exclaim'd and cryed aloud, "We came to visit and serve you
peaceably and quietly, and you Murder us; our Blood with which these
Walls are moistned and sprinkled will remain as an Everlasting
Testimony of our Unjust Slaughter, and your Barbarous Cruelty.  And
really this _Piaculum_ or horrid Crime deserves a Commemoration, or
rather speak more properly, the Commiseration of all Persons."

_Of the vast Kingdoms and Spatious Provinces of _PERUSIA.

A notorious Tyrant in the Year 1531, entred the Kingdoms of _Perusia_
with his Complices, upon the same Account, and with the same pretences,
and beginning at the same Rate as others did; he indeed being one of
those who were exercised, and highly concern'd in the Slaughters and
Cruelties committed on the Continent ever since the Year 1510, he
increased and heightned the Cruelties, Butcheries, and Rapine;
destroying and laying waste (being a False-hearted Faithless Person)
the Towns and Villages, and Murdering the Inhabitants, which occasion'd
all those Evils, that succeeded in those Regions afterward: Now to
undertake the Writing of a Narrative of them, and represent them lively
and Naturally to the Readers view, and perusal, is a work altogether
impossible, but must lie concealed and unknown until they shall more
openly and clearly appear, and be made visible to every Eye, at the day
of Judgement.  As for my part, if I should presume to unravel, in some,
measure the Deformity, Quality and Circumstances of those Enormities, I
must ingenuously confess I could by no means perform so burthensom a
Task, and render it compleat and as it ought to be.

At his first admission into these parts, he had laid waste some Towers,
and rob'd them of a great quantity of Gold, this he did in the Infancy
of his Tyrannical Attempts, when he arriv'd at _Pugna_ a Neighbouring
Isle so called, he had the Reception of an Angel; but about Six Months
after, when the _Spaniards_ had spent all their Provisions, they
discover'd and opened the _Indians_ Stores and Granaries, which were
laid up for the sustenance of themselves, Wives and Children against a
time of Dearth and Scarcity, brought them forth with Tears and
Weepings, to dispose of at pleasure: But they rewarded them with
Slaughter, Slavery and Depopulation as formerly.

Thence they betook themselves to the Isle _Tumbala_, scituate on the
firm Land, where they put to Death all they met with.  And because the
People terrified with their abominable Sins of Commission, fled from
their Cruelty, they were accused of Rebellion against the _Spanish_
King.  This Tyrant made use of this Artifice, he commanded all that he
took, or that had bestowed Gold, Silver and other rich Gifts on him,
still to load him with other Presents, till he found they had exhausted
their Treasures, and were grown naked and incapable of affording him
farther supplies, and then he declared them to be the Vassals and
Subjects of the King of _Spain_, flattering them, and proclaiming twice
by sound of Trumpet, that for the future he would not captivate or
molest them any more, looking upon it as lawful to rob, and terrifie
them with such Messages as he had done, before he admited them under
the King's protection, as if from that very time, he had never rob'd,
destroy'd or opprest them with Tyrannical Usage.

Not long after _Ataliba_ the King and Supreme Emperor of all these
Kingdoms, leading a great Number of Naked Men, he himself being at the
Head of them, armed with ridiculous Weapons, and wholly ignorant of the
goodness of the _Spaniards_ Bilbo-Blades, the Mortal Dartings of their
Lances, and the Strength of their Horse, whose Use and Service was to
him altogether unknown, and never so much as heard of before, and that
the _Spaniards_ were sufficiently weapon'd to rob the Devils themselves
of Gold, if they had any, came to the place where they then were;
saying, Where are these _Spaniards_? Let them appear, I will not stir a
foot from hence till they give me satisfaction for my Subjects whom
they have slain, my Towns they have reduc'd to Ashes, and my Riches
they have stoln from me.  The _Spaniards_ meet him, make a great
Slaughter of his Men, and seize on the Person of the King Himself, who
was carried in a Chair or Sedan on Mens Shoulders.  There was a Treaty
had about his Redemption, the King engaged to lay down Four Millions of
Crowns, as the purchase of his Freedom, but Fifteen were paid down upon
the Nail: They promise to set him at Liberty, but contrary to all Faith
and Truth according to their common Custom (for they always violated
their promises with the _Indians_) they falsly imposed this upon him,
that his People were got together in a Body by his Command; but the
King was made answer, That throughout his Dominions, not so much as a
Leaf upon a Tree durst move without his Authority and Pleasure, and if
any were assembled together, they must of necessity believe that it was
done without his Order, he being a Captive, it being in their power to
deprive him of his LIfe, if any such thing should be ordered by him:
Notwithstanding which, they entred into a Consultation to have him
burnt alive, and a little while after the Sentence was agreed upon, but
the Captain at the intreaty of some Persons commanded him first to be
strangled, and afterward thrown into the fire.  The King understanding
the sentence of Death past upon him, said; Why do you burn me?  What
Fact have I committed deserving Death?  Did you not promise to set me
free for a Sum of Gold.  And did I not give you a far larger quantity
than I promised?  But if it is your pleasure so to do, send me to your
King of _Spain_, and thus using many words to the same purpose, tending
to the Confusion and Detestation of the _Spanish_ Injustice, he was
burnt to Death.  And here let us take into serious Consideration the
Right and Title they had to make this War, the Captivity, Sentence, and
Execution of this Prince, and the Conscience wherewith these Tyrants
have possessed themselves of vast Treasures, which they have
surreptitiously and fraudulently taken away from this King, and a great
many more of the Rulers of these Kingdoms.  But as to the great number
of their Enormities committed by those who stile themselves Christians
in order to the extirpation of this People, I will hear repeat some of
them, which in the very beginning were seen by a _Franciscan_,
confirm'd by his own Letters, and signed with his Hand and Seal,
sending some of them to the _Perusian_ Provinces, and others to the
Kingdom of _Castile_: A Copy whereof I have in my Custody, Signed with
his Hand, as I said before; the Contents whereof follow.

 I Frier _Marcus de Xlicia_, of the _Franciscan_ Order, and Praefect
 of the whole Fraternity residing in the Perusian Provinces, one of
 the first among the Religious, who arriv'd with the _Spaniards_
 in these parts.  I decalre with incontrovertible and undeniable
 Testimony, those Transactions, which I saw with my own Eyes, and
 particularly such as relate to the usage of the Inhabitants of this
 Region.  In the first place I was an Eye-Witness, and am certainly
 assur'd, that these _Perusians_ are a People, who transcend all other
 _Indians_ in Meekness, Clemency, and Love to _Spaniards_; and I have
 seen the _Indians_ bestow very liberally on them Gold, Silver, and
 Jewels, being very serviceable to them many other wayes.  Nor did the
 _Indians_ ever betake themselves to their Arms in an Hostile manner,
 till by infinite Injuries and Cruelties they were compell'd thereunto:
 For on the contrary, they gave the _Spaniards_ an amicable and
 honourable Reception in all their Towns, and furnished them with
 Provisions, and as many Male and Female Servants as they required.

 I can also farther testifie, that the _Spaniards_, without the least
 provocation on their part, as soon as they entred upon these
 Territories, did burn at the Stake their most Potent _Caciq Ataliba_,
 Prince of the whole Country, after they had extorted from him above Two
 Millions of Gold, and possessed themselves of his Province, without the
 least Opposition: and _Cochilimaca_, his Captain General, who with
 other Rulers, came peaceably into them, follow'd him by the same fiery
 Tryal and Death.  As also some few days after, the Ruler of the
 Province of _Quitonia_, who was burnt, without any Cause given, or
 Crime laid to his Charge.  They likewise put _Schapera_, Prince of the
 _Canaries_ to the same Death, and in like manner, burnt the Feet of
 _Alvidis_, the greatest of all the _Quitonian_ Lords, and rackt him
 with other Torments to Extract from him a discovery of _Ataliba's_
 Treasure, whereof as appear'd after, he was totally ignorant.  Thus
 they treated _Cocopaganga_, Governour of all the Provinces of
 _Quitonia_, who being overcome with the Intreaties of _Sebastian
 Bernalcarus_, the Governours Captain, went peaceably to pay them a
 Visit; but because he could not give them as much Gold as they
 demanded, they burnt him with many other _Casics_ and Chief Persons of
 Quality.  And as I understnad, did it with this evil Intention, that
 they might not leave one surviving Lord or Peer in the whole Countrey.

 I also affirm that I saw with these Eyes of mine the _Spaniards_ for no
 other reason, but only to gratifie their bloody mindedness, cut off the
 Hands, Noses, and Ears, both of _Indians_ and _Indianesses_, and that
 in so many places and parts, that it would be too prolix and tedious to
 relate them.  Nay, I have seen the _Spaniards_ let loose their Dogs
 upon the _Indians_ to bait and tear them in pieces, and such a Number
 of Villages burnt by them as cannot well be discover'd: Farther this is
 a certain Truth, that they snatched Babes from the Mothers Embraces,
 and taking hold of their Arms threw them away as far as they would from
 them: (a pretty kind of barr-tossing Recreation.) They committed many
 other Cruelties, which shook me with Terror at the very sight of them,
 and would take up too much time in the Relation.

 I likewise aver, That the _Spaniards_ gathered together as many
 _Indians_ as fill'd Three Houses, to which, for no cause, (or a very
 inconsiderable one) they set fire, and burnt every one of them: But a
 Presbyter, _Ocana_ by Name, chanced to snatch a little baby out of the
 fire, which being observ'd by a _Spaniard_, he tore him out of his
 Arms, and threw him into the midst of the Flames, where he was with the
 rest, soon burnt to Ashes, which _Spaniard_ the same day he committed
 that Fact, returning to his Quarters, dyed suddenly by the way, and I
 advised them not to give him Christian Burial.

 Farthermore I saw them send to several _Casics_ and Principal
 _Indians_, promising them a protecting Passeport to travel peaceably
 and securely to them, who, no sooner came, but they were burnt; Two of
 them before my Face, one at _Andonia_, and the other at _Tumbala_, nor
 could I with all my perswasions and preaching to them prevail so far as
 to save them from the Fire.  And this I do maintain according to God
 and my own Conscience, as far as I could possibly learn, that the
 Inhabitants of _Perusia_ never promoted or raised any Commotion or
 Rebellion, though as it is manifest to all Men, they were afflicted
 with Evil Dealings and Cruel Torments: And they, not without Cause, the
 _Spaniards_ breaking their Faith and Word, betraying the Truth and
 Tyrannically contrary to all Law and Justice, destroying them and the
 whole Country, inflicting on them great Injuries and Losses, were more
 reay to prepare themselves for Death, than still to fall at once into
 such great and irrecoverable Miseries.

 Nay I do declare, according to Information from the _Indians_
 themselves, that there are to this day far greater Quantities of Gold
 kept hid and concealed than ever were yet detected or brought to light,
 which by means of the _Spanish_ Injustice and Cruelty, they would not
 then, nor ever will discover so long as they are so barbarously
 treated, but will rather chose to dye with the Herd.  Whereat the Lord
 God is highly offended and the King hath very ill Offices done him, for
 he is hereby defrauded of this Region, which was sufficiently able to
 furnish all _Castile_ with Necessaries, the Recovery whereof can never
 be expected without great difficulty and vast Expenses.

Thus far I have acquainted you with the very words of this Religious
_Franciscan_, ratified by the Bishop of _Mexico_, who testifieth that
the said Frier _Marc_ did affirm and maintain what is above-mentioned.

Here it is to be observ'd what this said Frier was an Eye-Witness of;
for he travelled up in this Countrey Fifty or a Hundred Miles, for the
space of Nine or Ten Years, when as yet, few _Spaniards_ had got
footing there, but afterward, at the noise of Gold to be had there in
great plenty, Four or Five Thousand came thither, who spread themselves
through those Kingdoms and Provinces the space of Five or Six Hundred
Miles, which they made wholly desloate, committing the same, or greater
Cruelies than are before recited; for in reality they destroyed from
that time to these very days, above an Hundred Thousand poor Souls more
than he gives an Account of, and with less fear of God and the King,
nay with less Mercy have they destroyed the greatest part of Mankind in
these Kingdoms, above Four Millions suffering by violent Death.

A few days after they darted to Death with Arrows made of Reeds a
Puissant Queen, the Wife of a Potentate, who still sways the Imperial
Scepter of that Kingdom, whom the _Spaniards_ had a design to take,
which instigated him to raise a Rebellion, and he still continues a
Rebel.  They seized the Queen his Consort, and contrary to all Law and
Equity murdered her, as is said before, who was then, as report, big
with Child, only for this Reason, that they might add fresh Affliction
and Grief to her Husband.


_Of the New Kingdom of_ Granada

Many Tyrants there were, who set Sail from _Venecuela_, St. _Martha_,
and _Carthagena_, hastening to the Conquest of _Perusia_, Anno Dom.
1539. and they accompanied with many more going farther from this
Region, endeavored to penetrate into the Heart of this Countrey, where
they found about Three Hundred Miles from _Carthagena_ and St.
_Martha_, many admirable Provinces and most fruitful Land, furnished
with an even-tempered or meek-spirited People, as they are in other
parts of _India_; very rich in Gold and those sorts of precious Stones
known by the name of Emralds: To which Province they gave the Name of
_Granada_, upon this account, because the Tyrant who first arrived in
these Regions, was born in the Kingdom of _Granada_ belonging to these
parts; now they that spoiled these Provinces with their rapine being
wicked, cruel, infamous Butchers, and delighting in the effusion of
Humane Blood, having practically experimented the piacular and grand
Enormities perpetrated among the _Indians_; and upon this account their
Diabolical Actions are so great, so many in number, and represented so
grievously horrid by circumstantial aggravations, that they exceed all
the villanies committed by others, nay by themselves in other Regions,
I will only select and cull out a few out of so great a number which
have bene transacted by them within these three years, for my present

A certain Governour, because he that went to commit depredations and
spoils in the Kingdom of _Granada_, would not admit him, as a Companion
in his Robberies and Cruelties, set up an Inquisition, and produced
proofs confirmed by great evidence, whereby he palpably lays open, and
proves the Slaughters and Homicides he committed, and persists in to
this very day, which were read in the _Indian_ Courts of Judicature,
and are there now Recorded.

In this Inquisition the Witnesses depose, that when all these Kingdoms
enjoy'd Peace and Tranquillity, the _Indians_ serv'd the _Spaniards_,
and got their living by contstnat day-labour in Tilling and Manuring
the Ground, bringing them much Gold, and many Gems, particularly
Emeralds, and what other Commodities they could, and possessed, their
Cities and Dominions being divided among the _Spaniards_, to procure
which is the chiefest of their care and pains; and these are the proper
measures they take to obtain their proposed ends, to wit, heaping and
treasuring up of Gold and Riches.

Now when all the _Indians_ were under their accustomed Tyranny: A
certain Tyrant, and Chief Commander, took the King and Lord of the
whole Countrey, and detain'd him Captive for six or seven moneths,
demanding of him, without any reason, store of Gold and Emeralds. The
said King, whose name was _Bogoca_, though fear, promised him a House
of Gold, hoping, in time, to escape out of his clutches, who thus
plagu'd him, and sent some _Indians_ for Gold, who frequently, and at
several times, brought him a great quantity of Gold, and many Jewels;
but because the King did not, according to his promise, bestow upon him
an Apartment made of pure Gold, he must therefore forfeit his Life.
The Tyrant commanded himto be brought to Tryal before himself, and so
they cite and summon to a Tryal the greatest King in the whole Region;
and the Tyrant pronounced this Sentence, that unless he did perform his
Golden Promise he should be exposed to severe Torments.  They rackt
him, poured boiling Soap into his Bowels, chain'd his Legs to one post,
and fastened his Neck to another, two men holding his Hands, and so
applyed the scorching heat of the Fire to his Feet; the Tyrant himself
often casting his eye upon him, and threatning him with death, if he
did not give him the promised Gold; and thus with these kind of horrid
torments, the said Lord was destroy'd; which while they were doing, God
being willing to manifest how displeasing these Cruelties are to His
Divine Majesty, the whole City, that was the Stage on which they were
acted, was consumed by fire; and the rest of the Captains following his
example, destroy'd all the Lords of that Region by Fire and Faggot.

Once it fell out, that many _Indians_ addressed themselves to the
_Spaniards_ with all Humility and Simplicity, as they use to do, who
thinking themselves safe and secure, behold the Captain comes into the
City, where they were to do their work, and commands all these
_Indians_, sleeping and taking their rest, after Supper, being wearied
with the heavy drudgery of the day, to be slain by the Sword: And this
stratagem he put in practice, to make a greater impression of fear on
all the minds of the Inhabitants; and another time a certain Captain
commanded the _Spaniards_ to declare upon Oath, how many _Casics_ and
_Indians_ every individual person had in his Family at home, who were
presently lead to a publick place, and lost their Heads; so there
perisht, that bout, four or five hundred Men.  The Witnesses depose
this of a particular Tyrant, that by beating, cutting off the Hands and
Noses of many Women as well as Men, and destroying several persons in
great numbers, he exercised horrid Cruelties.

Then one of the Captains sent this bloody Tyrant into the Province of
_Bogata_, to inquire who succeeded that Prince there, whom he so
barbarously and inhumanely Murder'd, who traveling many miles in this
Countrey, took as many _Indians_ as he could get, some of which,
because they did not tell him who was Successor of this Deceased
Prince, had their Hands cut off, and others were exposed to hunger-
starv'd Currs, to be devour'd by them, and as many of them perished

Another time about the fourth Watch, early in the morning he fell upon
several _Casics_, Noblemen and other _Indians_, who lookt upon
themselves to be safe enough, (for they had their faith and security
given, that none of them should receive any damage or injury) relying
upon this, they left the Mountains their lurking places, without any
suspition or fear, and returned to their Cities, but he seized on them
all, and commanding them to extend their hands on the ground, cut them
off with his own Sword, saying, that he punished them after this maner,
because they would not inform him what Lord it was, that succeeded in
that Kingdom.

The Inhabitants of one of these Provinces, perceiving that four or five
of their Governours were sent to the other World in a fiery Vehicle or
Chariot, being terrified therewith, took to the Mountains for
Sanctuary, there being four or five thousand in number, as appears by
good Evidence; and the aforesaid Captain sends a Tyrant, more cruel
than any of the rest after them.  The _Spaniards_ ascend the Mountains
by force (for the _Indians_ were naked an unarm'd) Proclaiming Peace,
if they would desist and lay down their Arms, which the _Indians_ no
sooner heard, but quitted their Childish Weapons; and this was no
sooner done but this Sanguinary _Spaniard_ sent some to possess
themselves of the Fortifications, and they being secur'd, to attaque
the _Indians_.  Thus they, like Wolves and Lyons, did rush upon this
flock of Sheep, and were so tired with slaughter, that they were forced
to desist for a while and take breath, which done, the Captain commands
them to fall to it again at the same bloody rate, and precipitate all
that survived the Butchery, from the top of the Mountain, which was of
a prodigious height; and that was perform'd accordingly.  And the
Witnesses farther declare upon Oath, that they saw the  bodies of about
seven hundred _Indians_ falling from the Mount at one time, like a
Cloud obscuring the Air, who were all broken to pieces.

This very Tyrant came once to the city _Cota_, where he surprized
abundance of Men, together with fifteen or twenty Casics of the highest
rank and quality, whom he cast to the Dogs to be torn Limb-meal in
pieces, and cut off the Hands of several Men and Women, which being run
through with a pole, were exposed to be viewed and gaz'd upon by the
_Indians_, where you might see at once seventy pair of hands,
transfixed with Poles; nor is it to be forgotten, that he cut off the
Noses of many Women and Children.

The Witnesses farther depose, that the Cruelties and great Slaughters
committed in the aforesaid new Kingdom of _Granada_, by this Captain,
and other Tyrants, the Destroyers of Mankind, who accompany him, and
have power still given them by him to exercise the same, are such and
so hainous, that if his Majesty does not opportunely apply some remedy,
for the redress and prevention of such mischiefs for the future, (since
the _Indians_ are daily slaughtered to accumulate and enrich themselves
with Gold, which the Inhabitants have been so rob'd of, that they are
now grown bare, for what they had, they have disposed to the
_Spaniards_ already) this Kingdom will soon decay and be made desolate,
and consequently the Land being destitute of _Indians_, who should
manure it, will lye fallow and incultivated.

And here is to be noted, how pestilential and inhumane the cruelty of
these Tyrants hath been, and how violently exercised, when as in two or
three years space, they were all slain, and the Country wholly desolate
and deserted, as those that have been Eye-witnesses can testifie; they
having acted like Merciless Men, not having the fear of God and the
King before their Eyes, but by the instigation of the Devil; so that it
may well be said and affirmed, not one Person will be left alive,
unless his Majesty does retard, and put a stop to the full career of
their Cruelties, which I am very apt to believe, for I have seen with
these very eyes of mine, many Kingdoms laid waste and depopulated in a
small time. There are other stately Provinces on the Confines of the
New Kindgom of _Granada_, as _Popayan_ and _Cali_, together with three
or four more above five hundred miles in length, which they destroyed,
in the same manner, as they have done other places, and laid them
absolutely waste by the prementioned Slaughters, who were very
Populous, and the Soil very Fruitful.  They who came among us from
those Regions report, that nothing can be more deplorable or worthy of
pity and commiseration, then to behold such large and great Cities
totally ruinated, and intombed in their own Ashes, and that in a City
adorn'd with 1000 or 2000 Fabricks, there are hardly now to be seen 50
standing, the rest being utterly demolished, or consum'd and levelled
to the ground by Fire and in some parts Regions of 100 miles in length,
(containing spacious Cities) are found absolutely destroyed and
consumed by Fire.

Finally many great Tyrants who came out of the _Perusian_ Kingdoms by
the _Quitonians_ Travelled to the said new Kindgom of _Granada_ and
_Popayan_, and by _Carthagena_ and the _Urabae_, they directed their
course to _Calisium_, and several other Tyrants of _Carthagena_ assault
_Quito_, who joyn'd themselves in an intire Body and wholly depopulated
and laid waste that Region for the space of 600 miles and upward, with
the loss of a prodigious number of poor Souls; nor as yet do they treat
the small remnant of so great and innocent a people with more humanity
then formerly.

I desire therefore that the Readers who have or shall peruse these
passages, would please seriously to consider whether or no, such
Barbarous, Cruel and Inhumane Acts as these do not transcend and exceed
all the impiety and tyrrany, which can enter into the thoughts or
imagination of Man, and whether these _Spaniards_ deserve not the name
of Devils. For which of these two things is more eligible or desirable
whether the _Indians_ should be delivered up to the Devils themselves
to be tormented or the _Spaniards_? That is still a question.

Nor can I here omit one piece of Villany, (whether it ought to be
postpon'd or come behind the cruelty of Brute Animals, that I leave to
decision).  The _Spaniards_ who are conversant among the _Indians_ bred
up curst Curs, who are so well instructed and taught that they at first
sight, fly upon the Inhabitants tearing them limb by limb, and so
presently devour them.  Now let all persons whether Christians or not
consider, if ever such a thing as this reacht the ears of any Man, they
carry these Dogs with them as Companions where ever they go, and kill
the fettered _Indians_ in multitudes like Hogs for their Food; thus
sharing with them in the Butchery.  Nay they frequently call one to the
other, saying, lend me the fourth part of one of your Slaves to feed my
Dogs, and when I kill one, I will repay you, as if they had only
borrowed a quarter of a Hog or Sheep.  Others, when they go a Hunting
early in the morning, upon their return, if you ask them what sport had
you to day at the Game?  They will answer, enough, enough, for my Dogs
have killed and worried 15 or 20 _Indian_ Vassals.  Now all these
things are plainly prov'd upon those Inquisitions and Examinations made
by one Tyrant against another.  What I beseech you, can be more horrid
or barbarous?

But I will desist from Writing any longer at this time, till some
Messenger brings an account of greater and blacker Impieties (if
greater can be committed) or else till we come to behold them again, as
we have done for the space of forty two years with our own Eyes.  I
will only make this small addition to what I have said that the
_Spaniards_, from the beginning of their first entrance upon _America_
to this present day, were no more sollicitous of promoting the
Preaching of the Gospel of Christ to these Nations, then if they had
been Dogs or Beasts, but which is worst of all, they expressly
prohibited their addresses to the Religious, laying many heavy
Impositions upon them, dayly afflicting and persecuting them, that they
might not have so much time and leasure at their own disposal, as to
attend their Preaching and Divine Service; for they lookt upon that to
be an impediment to their getting Gold, and raking up riches which
their Avarice stimulated them so boundlessly to prosecute.  Nor do they
understand any more of a God, whether he be made of Wood, Brass or
Clay, then they did above an hundred years ago, New _Spain_ only
exempted, which is a small part of _America_, and was visited and
instructed by the Religious.  Thus they did formely and still do perish
without true Faith, or the knowledge and benefit of our Religious

I Frier _Bartholomeas de las Casas_ or _Casaus_ of the Order of St.
_Dominick_, who through the mercy of God am Arriv'd at the _Spanish_
Court, Cordially wishing the expulsion of Hell or these Hellish Acts
out of the _Indies_; fearing least those Souls redeemed by the pretious
Blood of Christ, should perish eternally, but heartily desiring that
they may acknowledge their Creator and be saved; as also for the care
and compassion that I ever had for my Native Countrey _Castile_,
dreading least God should destroy it for the many sins committed by the
Natives her Children, against Faith, Honour and their Neighbours: I
have at length upon the request of some Persons of great Quality in
this Court, who are fervently zealous of the Honour of God, and moved
with pitty at the Calamities and Afflictions of their Neighbours
(though I long since proposed it within my self, and resolved to
accomplish it, but could not, being distracted with the avocations of
multiplicity of constant Business and Employment, have leisure to
effect it) I say I have at length finished this Treatise and Summary at
_Valencia, Decemb._ 8. _An. Dom._ 1542, when they were arrived at the
Height, and utmost Degree of executing Violences, Oppressions, Tyrrany,
Desolations, Torments, and Calamities in all the aforesaid Regions,
Inhabited by the _Spaniards_ (though they are more Cruel in some places
than other) yet _Mexico_ with its Confines were more favourably treated
than the rest of the Provinces.

And indeed no Man durst openly and publickly do any injury to the
Inhabitants; for there some Justice, (which is no where else in
_India_) though very little is done and practiced; yet they are
grievously opprest with intolerable Taxes.  But I do really believe,
and am fully perswaded that our Sovereign Lord _Charles_ the Fifth,
Emperour and King of _Spain_, our Lord and Prince, who begins to be
sensible of the Wickedness and Treacheries, which have been, and still
are committed against this Miserable Nation, and distressed Countries
contrary to the Will and Pleasure of God, as well as His Majesties that
he will in time, (for hitherto the Truth hath been concealed and kept
from his Knowledge, with as great Craft, as Fraud and Malice) totally
extirpate and root up all these Evils and Mischiefs, and apply such
proper Medicines as may purge the Morbifick and peccant Humours in the
Body Politick of this New World, committed to his Care and Government
as a Lover and Promoter of Peace and Tranquility.  God preserve and
bless him with Renown and a happy Life in his Imperial State, and
prosper him in all his Attempts, that he may remedy the Distempers of
the Christian Church, and Crown him at last with Eternal Felicity,

After I had published this Treatise, certain Laws and Constitutions,
enacted by his Majesty then at _Baraclona_ in the Month of _December,
An. Dom._ 1542, promulgated and published the Year ensuing in the City
of _Madera_, whereby it is provided, (as the present Necessities
requir'd) that a period be put to such great Enormities and Sins, as
were committed against God and our Neighbours, and tended to the utter
Ruine and Perdition of this New World.  These Laws were published by
his Majesties Order, several Persons of highest Authority, Councellors,
Learned, and Conscientious Men, being assembled together for that
purpose, and many Debates made at _Valedolid_ about this weighty
Affair, at length by the unanimous Consent and Advice of all those who
had committed their Opinions to Writing, they were made publick who
traced more closely therein the Laws of Christ and Christianity, and
were judged Persons pure, free from and innocent of that stain and
blemish of depriving the _Indians_ of their Treasures by Theft and
Rapine, which Riches had contaminated and sullied the Hands, but much
more the Souls of those who were enslav'd by those heaps of Wealth and
Covetousness, now this obstinate and hot pursuit after Wealth was the
Original of all those Evils committed without the least Remorse or
Check of Conscience.

These Laws being thus promulgated, the _Courtiers_ who promoted these
Tyrants, took care that several Copies should be transcribed, (though
they were extremely afflicted to see, that there was no farther hopes
or means to promote the former Depredations and Extortions by the
Tyranny aforesaid) and sent them to several _Indian_ Provinces. They,
who took upon them the Trouble and Care of Extirpating, and Oppressing
by different ways of Cruelty, as they never observed any Method or
Order, but behav'd themselves most inordinately and irregularly, having
perused these Diplomata or Constitutions, before the new made Judges,
appointed to put them in Execution, could Arrive or be Landed, they by
the assistance of those (as 'tis credibly rumour'd, nor is it repugnant
to truth) who hitherto favour'd their Criminal and Violent Actions,
knowing well that these Laws and Proclamations must necessarily take
effect, began to grow mutinous, and rebel, and when the Judges were
Landed, who were to Execute these _Mandates_, laying aside all manner
of Love and Fear of God, were so audacious as to contemn and set at
nought all the Reverence and Obedience due to their King, and so became
Traytors, demeaning themselves like Blood-Thirsty Tyrants, destitute
and void of all Humanity.

More particularly this appear'd in the _Perusian_ Kingdoms, where _An.
Dom._ 1542, they acted such Horrid and Stupendous Enormities, that the
like were never known or heard in _America_, or throughout the whole
World before that time: Nor were they only practised upon the
_Indians_, who were mostly destroy'd, but upon themselves also, God
permitting them by his just Judgement to be their own Executioners, and
sheath their Swords in one anothers Bowels.  In like manner the other
parts of this New World being moved by the Example of these Rebels,
refused to yield Obedience to those Laws.  The rest pretending to
petition his Majesty turn Rebellious themselves; for they would not
voluntarily resign those Estates, Goods and Chattels they have already
usurped, nor willingly manumit those _Indians_, who were doomed to be
their Slaves, during Life; and where they restrain'd the Murdering
Sword from doing Execution, they opprest them gradually with personal
Vassalage, injust and intolerable Burthens; which his Majesty could not
possibly hitherto avert or hinder, because they are all universally,
some publickly and openly, others clancularly and secretly, so
naturally addicted to Rob, Thieve and Steal; and thus under pretext of
serving the King, they dishonour God, and defraud his Imperial Majesty.

Here the Author having finished the matter of Fact in this Compendious
History, for Confirmation of what he has here written, quotes a tedious
and imperfect Epistle (as he styles it) beginning and ending anonymous
withal, containing the Cruelties committed by the _Spaniards_, the same
in effect as our Author has prementioned, now in regard that I judge
such reiterated Cruelties and repeated Barbarisms are Offensive to the
Reader, he having sailed already too long, and too far in an Ocean of
Innocent _Indian_ blood: I have omitted all but Two or Three Stories
not taken notice of by the Author.  One of the Tyrants, (who followed
the steps of _John Ampudia_, a notorious Villain) gave way to a grat
Slaughter of Sheep the chief Food and Support of the _Spaniards_ as
well as _Indians_, permitting them to kill Two or Three Hundred at a
time, only for their Brains, Fat, or Suet, whose Flesh was then
altogether useless, and not fit to be eaten; but many _Indians_, the
_Spaniards_ Friends and Confederates followed them, desiring they might
have the hearts to feed upon, whereupon they butchered a great many of
them, for this only Reason, because they would not eat the other parts
of the Body.  Two of their gang in the Province of _Peru_ kild Twenty
Five Sheep, who were sold among the _Spaniards_ for Twenty Five Crowns,
merely to get the fat and brains out of them: Thus the frequent and
extraordinary Slaughter of their Sheep above a Hundred Thousand Head of
Cattel were destroy'd.  And upon this Account the Region was reduced to
great penury and want, and at length perished with Hunger.  Nay the
Province of _Quito_, which abounded with Corn beyond Expression, by
such proceedings as these, was brought to that Extremity that a
Sextarie or small Measure or Wheat was sold for Ten Crowns, and a Sheep
at as dear a rate.

This Captain taking leave of _Quito_ was followed by a poor _Indianess_
with loud Cries and Clamours, begging and beseeching him not to carry
away her Husband; for she had the charge of Three Children, and could
not possibly supply them with Victuals, but they must inevitably dye
with hunger, and though the _Captain_ repulsed her with an angry brow
at the first; yet she approacht him a second time with repeated Cries,
saying, that her Children must perish for want of Food; but  finding
the Captain inexorable and altogether unmov'd with her Complaints, and
her Husband not restor'd, through a piquant necessity wedded to
despair; she cut off the Heads of her Children with sharp Stones, and
so dispatcht them into the other World.

Then he proceeded farther to another City, and sent some _Spaniards_
that very Night, to take the _Indians_ of the City of _Tulilicui_, who
next day brought with them above a Hundred Persons; some of which (whom
he lookt upon to be able to carry burthens) he reserved for his own and
his Soldiers service, and other were chain'd, and perished in their
Fetters: but the little Infants he gave to the _Casic_ of _Tulilicui_,
abovesaid to be eaten up and devoured, whose skins are stuft with Ashes
and hung up in his House to be seen at this very day.  And in the close
of this Letter he shuts up all with these words, 'tis here very
remarkable and never to be forgotten, that this Tyrant (being not
ignorant of the Mischiefs and Enormities executed by him) boastingly
said of himself, _They who shall travel in these Countreys Fifty years
hence, and hear the things related of me, will have cause to say or
declare, that never such a Tyrant as I am marched through these
Regions, and committed the like Enormities._

Now not to quit the Stage without one Comical Scene or Action whereon
such Cruelties have been lively personated, give me leave to acquaint
you with a Comical piece of Grammatical Learning in a Reverend
Religioso of these parts, sent thither to convert the _West-Indies_
Pagans, which the Author mentions among his Reasons and Replications,
and all these I pass by as immaterial to our purpose, many of them
being repeated in the Narrative before.

The weight and burthen of initiating the _Indians_ into the Christian
Faith lay solely on the _Spaniards_ at first; and therefore _Joannes
Colmenero_ in _Santa Martha_, a Fantastic, Ignorant, and Foppish
Fellow, was under Examination before us (and he had one of the most
spatious Cities committed to his Charge as well as the Care and Cure of
the Souls of the Inhabitants) whether he understood how to fortifie
himself with the sign of the Cross against the Wicked and Impious, and
being interrogated what he taught, and how he instructed the _Indians_,
whose Souls were intrusted to his Care and Conduct; he return'd this
Answer, _That if he damn'd them to the Devil and Furies of Hell, it was
sufficient to retrieve them, if he pronounced these Words,_ Per Signin
Sanctin Cruces.  A Fellow fitter to be a Hogherd than a Shepherd of

This Deep, Bloody _American_ Tragedy is now concluded, and my Pen
choakt up with _Indian_ Blood and Gore.  I have no more to say, but
pronounce the Epilogue made by the Author, and leave the Reader to
judge whether it deserves a Plaudite.

The _Spaniards_ first set Sail to _America_, not for the Honour of God,
or as Persons moved and merited thereunto by servent Zeal to the True
Faith, nor to promote the Salvation of their Neighbours, nor to serve
the King, as they falsely boast and pretend to do, but in truth, only
stimulated and goaded on by insatiable Avarice and Ambition, that they
might for ever Domineer, Command, and Tyrannize over the _West-
Indians_, whose Kingdoms they hoped to divide and distribute among
themselves.  Which to deal candidly in no more or less intentionally,
than by all these indirect wayes to disappoint and expel the Kings of
_Castile_ out of those Dominions and Territories, that they themselves
having usurped the Supreme and Regal Empire, might first challenge it
as their Right, and then possess and enjoy it.


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