mixture of Jewish or Mahometan blood, and Bever disgraced by any censure of the inquisition, e) In such pure hands, power is deemed to be fafely lodged, and almost every publick function, from the viceroyalty downwards, is committed to them alone. Every person, who by his birth, or refidence in America, may be fufpected of any attachment or interest adverso to the mother-country, is the object of distrust to such a degree, as amounts nearly to an ex. clufion from all offices of confidence or authority. f) By this confpicuous predilection of the court, the Chapetones are raised to such pre-eminerice in America, that they look down with disdain on every other order of men.

Creoles the second.

The character and state of the Ceroles, or descendants of Europeans settled in America , the second class of subjects in the Spanish colonies, have enabled the Chapetones to acquire other advantages, hardly less considerable than those which they derive from the partial favour of government. Though some of the Creolin race are descended from the conquerors of the New World; though others can trace up their pedigree to the noblest families in Spain; though many are pofleffed of ample fortunes, yet, by the enervating influence of a fultry climate, by

the c). Recopil. lib. ix. tit. xxvi, 1, 15, 166 f) See NOTE L.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

the rigour of a jealous government, and by their despair of attaining that distinction to which mankind naturally aspire, the vigour of their minds is so entirely brokep, that a great part of them waste life in luxurious indulgencies, mingled with an illiberal fuperftition ftill more debafing. Languid and uninterprising, the operations of an active extended commerce would be to them so cumbersome and oppressive, that in almost every part of America they decline engaging in it. The interior traffick of every colony, as well as its trade with the neighbouring provinces, and with Spain itself, are carried on chiefly by the Chapetones; g) who, as the recompence of their industry, amass immense wealth, while the Creoles , funk in floth, are satisfied with the revenues of their paternal estates,

Riyalship between these.
From this stated competition for power and
wealth between those two orders of citizens,
and the various passions excited by a sivalship
so interesting, their hatred is violent and im-
placable. On every occasion, fymptoms of
this aversion break out, and the common appel-
lations which each bestows on the other, are
as contemptuous as those which flow from the
moft deep-rooted national antipathy, h) The

g) Voy. de Ulloa, i. 27. 251. Voy, de Frezier , 227.
h) Gage's Survey. p. 9. Frezier, 226.


court of Spain , from a refinement of distrustful policy, cherishes thofe feeds of discord, and foments this mutual jealousy which not only prevents the two most powerful classes of its subjects in the New World from combining against the parent state, but prompts each, with the most vigilant zeal, to observe the motions and to counteract the schemes of the other

A mixed raco forms the third order of citizens.

[ocr errors]

The third class of inhabitants in the Spanifh colonies is a mixed race, the offspring either of an European and a negro, or of an European and Indian, the former called Mulattoes, the latter Mestizos.

As the court of Spain, folicitous, to incorporate its new vaffals with its ancient subjects, early encouraged the Spaniards settled in America to marry the natives of that country, several alliances of this kind were formed in their infant colonies. i) But it has been more owing to licentious indulgence, than to compliance with this injunction of their fovera eigns, that this mixed breed has multiplied fo greatly, as to constitute a considerable part of the population in all the Spanish settlements. The several stages of descent in this race, and the gradual variations of shade until the African black, or the copper colour of America, brighten into an European complexion, are accurately

Herrera , dec. I. lib. V. C.

i) Recopil. lib. vi. tit. i. 1. 2.

12. dec, 3. lib. vii. c. 2.


mord, :

not only Tes of 1 combini each, w

e motios other.

marked by the Spaniards, and each distinguished by a peculiar name. Those of the first and second generations are considered, and treated as Indians and Negroes; but in the third descent, the characteristick hue of the former disappears; and in the fifth, the deeper tint of the latter is fo entirely effaced, that they can no longer be distinguished from Europeans, and become entitled to all their privileges. k) It is chiefly by this mixed race, whose frame is remarkably robuft and hardy, that the mechanick arts are carried on, and other active functions in fociety are discharged, which the two higher classes of citizens, from pride, or from indolence, disdain to exercise. 1)

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

Negroes form the fourth order.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

The negroes hold the fourth rank among the inhabitants of the Spanish colonies. The introduction of that unhappy part of the human fpecies into America, together with their fervices and sufferings there, shall be fully explained in onother place; here they are mentioned chiefly, in order to point out a peculiarity in their fituation under the Spanish dominion. In several of their settlements , particularly in New Spain , negroes are chiefly employed in domestick service. They form a prin

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

T 2

k) Voy. de Ulloa, i. p. 27. 1) Voy. de Ulloa, i. 29. Voy. de Bouguer, p. 104. Me.

lendez, Tesoros Verdaderos, i. 354.

cipal part in the train of luxury, and are che rished and caressed by their fuperiors, to whose vanity and pleasures they are equally subfervient.. Their dress and appearance are hardly less fplendid than that of their masters, whose manners they imitate , and whose passions they imbibe. m) Elevated by this distinction, they have affumed such a tone of fuperiority over the Indians, and treat them with fuch infolence and fcorn, that antipathy between the two races has become implacable. Even in Peru where negroes seem to be more numerous, and are employed in field-work as well as domestick service, they maintain their afcendant over the Indians, and the mutual hatred of one to the other fubfifts with equal violence. The laws have industriosly fomented this aversion, to which, gecident gave rise, and, by moft rigorous injunctions, have endeavoured to prevent every intercourse that might form a bond of union between the two races. Thus, by an artful policy, the Spaniards derive strength from that circumstance in population which is the weak. nefs of other European colonies, and have secur, ed as affociates and defenders, those very perfons who elsewhere are objects of jealousy and terror, n)

in) Gage, p. 56. Voy. de Ulloa , i. 451.

.) Recopil. lib. vii. tit. V, 1. 7. Herrern, des, 8. lib. y ii.

c. 12, Frezier, 244.

[ocr errors]
« ElőzőTovább »