BLTC Press Titles

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The Picture of Dorian Gray

Oscar Wilde

The Souls of Black Folk

W. E. B. DuBois

Mortal Coils

Aldous Huxley

The Fairy Tale of the Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Thomas Carlyle, Rudolf Steiner

A philosophical and political history of the settlements and trade of the Europeans in the East and West Indies

by Raynal (Guillaume-Thomas-François, abbé)


lie Spaniards One day, as the conquerors were disacquire the first puting with each other about gold, with notion of Peru, a degree of warmth that- seemed tothreaten some act of violence, a young cacique overturned the scales in which they were weighing it. Why, said he to them, with an air of disdain, why c!o you quarrel for such a trifle? If it be for this useless metal that you have quitted your country, and that you massacre so many people, I will conduct you into a region ivhere it is so common, that it is employedfor the meanest purposes.. Being urged to explain himself more clearly,. he assured them, that, at a little distance from the ocean

'which washed the country of Darien, there was another ocean which led to this rich country. The opinion immediately and universally prevailed, that this was the sea which Columbus bad so earnestly sought after; and, oa the sirst of September 1513, one hundred and ninety Spaniards, attended by a thousand Indians, who were toserve

'them as guides, and to carry their provisions and toag.

"gage, set out to reconnoitre it. - . • '

. From the place whence this troop began their march, to the one they were going to, there was no more than fixty miles; but it was necessary to climb so many steep. mountains, to pass such large rivers, to traverse such deep morasses, to penetrate into such thick forests, and to disperse, perufade, or destroy so many fierce nations ; that it was not till after a march of five.and-twenty days, that men accustomed to dangers, fatigues, and wants, arrived at the place of their expectations. Without a moment's delay, Balboa, armed at all points, in the manner of the ancient chivalry, advanced some way into the South sea. Spectators of both hemispheres, exclaimed this barbarian, I call you to witness that I take possession of this part of 'i»e universe fir tbz trQVin. <f Castile. My sivord shall defend 'what my arm hath given to it. Already Was the cross planted upon the continent, and the name of Ferdinand inscribed upon the bark of some of the trees.

These ceremonies gave to the Europeans in those days the dominion of allthecountries in the New World, where they could introduce their fanguinary steps. Accordingly, the Spaniards thought they had a right to exact from the neighbouring people a tribute in pearls, metals, and provifions. Every testimony was united in confirming what had been at first faid of the riches of the empire that was called Peru; and the robbers who meditated the conquest of it, returned to Darien, where they were to collect the forces necessary for so difficult an enterprise.

Balboa expected that he should be employed to conduct this great defign. His companions had placed their confidence in him. He had thrown into the public cofsers more treasure than any ore of these adventurers. In the opinion of the public, the discovery he had just made, had put hira on a level with Columbus. But by an in*. stance of that injustice and ingratitude so common in courts, where merit cannot prevail against favour; where a great commander is superseded in the midst of his triumphs by an unfit person; where a dissipating and rapacious favourite displaces an economical minister of iniince; where the general good, and services done, are equally forgotten; and where revolutions in the great offices ot state often become objects of mirth and pleafantry; Pedrarias was cnosen in hi9 stead. The new commander, as jealous as he was cruel, had his predecessor confined; he ordered him to take his trial, and afterwards caused him to be beheaded. His subalterns, by his orders, or with his consent, pillaged, burnt, and massacred on all fides, without any distinction of allies or enemies; and it was not till after they had destroyed to the extent of three hundred leagues of the country, that in 1518 he transserred the colony of St. Mary, on the borders of the Pacific ocean, to a place that received the name of Panama. • .' .. .

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