Page:Narrative of the Proceedings of Pedrarias Davila (Haklyut, 34).djvu/24

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viii
INTRODUCTION.

the island of Española, that, united with those already here, although wc have not more than 100 fit to bear arms, I may be able to march into the interior of the land, and pass over to the other sea on the south side.

"That which I, by much labour and great hardships, have had the fortune to discover, is as follows:—In this province of Darien many very rich mines have been found, and there is gold in great quantities. Twenty rivers have been discovered, and thirty containing gold flow from a mountain about two leagues from this town, towards the south. This mountain is towards the west, and between the town and the mountain no gold bearing rivers have been seen, but I believe they exist. Following the course of the great river of San Juan for thirty leagues on the right hand side, one arrives at a province called Abanumaqué, which contains much gold. I have certain intelligence that there are very rich rivers of gold in this province, from a son of a Cacique,[1] and from other Indian men and women whom I have taken. Thirty leagues up this great river, on the left hand, a very large and beautiful stream flows into it, and two days' journey up this stream there is a Cacique called Davaive. He is a very great lord with a large and very populous land. He has great store of gold in his house, so much indeed that he who does not know the things of this land would be very hard of belief. I know this of a certainty. All the gold that goes forth from this gulf comes from the house of the cacique Davaive, as well as all that is owned by the caciques of those districts, and it is reported that they have many pieces of gold curiously worked, and very large. Many Indians who have seen them, tell me that this cacique Davaive has certain bags of gold, and that it takes the whole strength of a man to lift one of them on to his back.

"The cacique collects the gold, and this is the manner of his obtaining it.

  1. This was the son of the Cacique Comogre. See p. 11 (note).