were afraid of endangering his life by forming any other scheme for his relief; and though the force of the empire was still entire, no preparations were made, and no army affembla ed to avenge their own wrongs or those of their monarch. d

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

The Spaniards visit different provinces. The Spaniards remained in Caxamalca tran, quil and unmolested. Small detachments of their number marched into remote provinces of the empire, and , instead of meeting with any opposition, were every where received with marks of the most submissive respect. e)

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

Almagro arrives with a reinforcement, Inconsiderable as those parties were, and desirous as Pizarro might be to obtain fome knowledge of the interior state of the country, he could not have ventured upon any diminution of his main body, if he had not about this time (Dec. 1532.) received an account of Almagro's having landed at St. Michael with such a reinforcement as would almost double the number of his followers. f) The arrival of this long expected fuccour was not more agreeable to the Spaniards, than alarming to the Inca. He saw the power of his enemies increase; and as he knew neither the source whence they derived their

d) Xeres, 205.
f) Xeres, 204, Herrera, dec. 5. lib, jii: c. 1,9


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

fupplies, nor the means by which they were conveyed to Peru, he could not foresee to what a height the inundation that poured in upon his dominions might rise.

Huascar put to death , 1533. While .disquieted with such apprehen. fions, he learned that some Spaniards, in their way to Cuzco, had visited his brother Huascar in the place where he kept him confined, and that the captive prince had represented to them the justice of his own cause, and as an induce. ment to espouse it, had promised them a quantity of treasure vastly exceeding what Atahualpa had engaged to pay for his ransom. If the Spaniards should listen to this proposal, Atahualpa perceived his own destruction to be inevitable; and fufpecting that their insatiable thirst for gold would tempt them to lend a favourable ear to it, he determined to sacrifice his brother's life, that he might save his own; and his orders for this purpose were executed,

like all his other commands, with fcrupulous · punctuality. g)

The Spaniards make a division of the fpuil. Meanwhile, Indians daily arrived at Caxa. malca from different parts of the kingdom, loaded with treasure. A great part of the stipulated quantity was now amassed, and Atahualpa al-' . 5) Zarate , lib. iii. c. 6. Gomara Hift. c. 115. Herrera, des

5. lib. iii. c. 2.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

sured the Spaniards, that the only thing which prevented the whole from being brought in, was the remoteness of the provinces where it was deposited.

But such vast piles of gold , presented continually to the view of needy foldiers, had so inflamed their avarice, that it was impoffible any longer to restrain their impatience to obtain poffeffion of this rich-booty. Orders were given for melting down the whole, except some pieces of curious fabrick, reserved as a present for the emperor.

After setting apart the fifth due to the crown , and a hundred thousand pesos as a donative to the soldiers which arrived with Almagro, there remained one million five hundred and twenty-eight thoufand five hundred pefos to Pizarro and his followers. The festival of St. James, (July 25.1533.) the patron saint of Spain, was the day chosen for the partition of this vast sum, and the manner of conducting it strongly marks that strange alliance of fanaticism with avarice, which I have more than once had occafion to point out as a striking feature in the character of the conquerors of the New World. Though affembled to divide the spoils of an innocent people, procured by deceit, extortion, and cruelty, the transaction began with a folemn invocation of the name of God, h) as if they could have

[merged small][ocr errors]

h) Herrera dec, 6. lib. iii. c. 3,

expected the guidance of Heaven in distributing those wages of iniquity. In this division above eight thousand pesos, at that time not inferior in effective value to as many pounds Sterling in the present century, fell to the share of each horseman, and half that sum to each fooť soldier. Pizarro himself, and his officers received dividends in proportion to the dignity of their rank.

The effe& of it.

There is no example in history of such a sudden acquisition of wealth by military fervice , nor was ever a sum so great divided among so small a number of soldiers. Many of them having received a recompence for their services far beyond their most fanguine hopes, were so impatient to retire from fatigue and danger, in order to spend the remainder of i their days in their native country , in ease and opulence , that they demanded their difcharge with clamorous importunity. Pizarro, sensible that from such men he could expect neither, enterprise in action nor fortitude in suffering, and persuaded that wherever they went , the display of their riches would allure adventurers , less opulent but more hardy, to his standard, granted their fuit without reluctance, and permitted above fixty of them to accompany his brother Ferdinand , whom he sent to Spain with an account of his


[ocr errors]

success, and the

and the present destined for the emperor. i)

[ocr errors]

The Inca demands his liberty in vain.

[merged small][ocr errors]

an in.

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

The Spaniards having divided among them the treasure amassed for the Inca's ransom , he insisted with them to fulfil their promise of setting him at liberty. But nothing was farther from Pizarro's thoughts. During his long service in the New World, he had imbibed those ideas and maxims of his fellow-foldiers, which led them to consider its inhabitants as ferior race, neither worthy of the pame , nor intitled to the rights, of men, In his compact with Atahualpa , he had no other qbject than tu amuse his captive with such a prospect of recovering his liberty , as might induce him to lend all the aid of his authority towards collecting the wealth of his kingdom. Having now accomplished this, he no longer regarded his plighted faith ; and at the very time when the credulous prince hoped to be replaced on his throne, he had secretly resolved to bereave him of life. Many circumstances seem to have concurred in prompting him to this action, the most criminal and atrocions that stains the Spanish name', amidst all the deeds, of violence committed in carrying on the conquest of the New World.

[ocr errors]

i) Herrera , dec, 5. lib. iii. c, 4. Vega, p. 2. lib. i. c. 38.

« ElőzőTovább »