Page:Narrative of the Proceedings of Pedrarias Davila (Haklyut, 34).djvu/27

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xi
INTRODUCTION.

things, but I will not declare tliem until I know them more fully, believing that I shall discover them with the help of God.

"That which is to be found down this coast to the westward is the province called Careta, which is twenty leagues distant. There are certain rivers in it which contain gold, according to Indian men and women who are in this town. The Spaniards have not gone there, in order not to rouse the country until we have more men, for we are now few in number. Further down the coast, at a distance of forty leagues from this city, and twelve leagues inland, there is a cacique named Comogre, and another named Pocorosa; who are at equal distances from the sea. They have many wars with each other. They each have a town inland, and another on the sea-coast, by which the interior is supplied with fish. The Indians assured me that there were very rich rivers of gold near the houses of these caciques. At the distance of a day's journey from the cacique Pocorosa's house there are the most beautiful mountains that have been seen in these parts. They are clear of forests, except some groves of trees along the banks of mountain streams.

"In these mountains there are certain caciques who have great quantities of gold in their houses. It is said that these caciques store their gold in barbacoas like maize, because it is so abundant that they do not care to keep it in baskets; that all the rivers of these mountains contain gold; and that they have very large lumps in great abundance. Their method of collecting the gold is by going into the water, and gathering it in their baskets. They also scrape it up in the beds of streams, when they are dry; and that your most Royal Highness may be more completely informed concerning these parts, I send an Indian workman of that district who has collected it many times. Your most Royal Highness must not hold this subject as one for a jest, for I am in truth well assured of it by many principal Indians and caci-