LatAm Digital Edition and Gazetteer


The geographical and historical dictionary of America and the West Indies [volume 1]



tal, the settlement of this name, is 70 leagues tothe w. n. w. of Mexico.

Chilchota, another settlement of the headsettlement of Huautla, and alcaldia mayor of Cui-catlan ; situate at the top of a pleasant mountainwhich is covered with fruit trees. It contains 80families of Indians, who live chiefly by trading incochineal, saltpetre, cotton, seeds, and fruits.It is eight leagues from its head settlement.

Chilchota, another, with the dedicatory titleof San Pedro. It is of the head settlement ofQuimixtlan, and alcaldia mayor of S. Juan de losLlanos, in Nueva España. It contains 210 fami-lies of Indians.

CHILCUAUTLA y Cardinal, a settlementand real of the mines of the alcaldia mayor of Ix-miquilpan in Nueva España. It contains 215families of Indians, and in the real are 27 ofSpaniards, and 46 of Mustees and Mulattoes. Itis of an extremely cold and moist temperature,and its commerce depends upon the working ofthe lead mines. Some silver mines were formerlyworked here, but these yielded so base a metal,and in such small quantities, that they were en-tirely abandoned for those of lead, which yieldedby far the greatest emolument. Five leagues tothe e. of its capital.

CHILE, a kingdom in the most s. part of S. Ame-rica, bounded on the n. by Peru, on the s. by thestraits of Magellan and Terra del Fuego, on thee. by the provinces of Tucuman and BuenosAyres, on the n, e. by Brazil and Paraguay, andon the®, by the S. sea. It extends from n.ios.472 leagues ; comprehending the Terras Magal-lanicas from the straits and the plains or desertsof Copiapo, which are its most n. parts. TheInca A upanqui, eleventh Emperor of Peru, carriedhis conquests as far as the river Mauli or Maulle, inlat, 34° 30' s. Diegro de Almagro was the firstSpaniard who discovered this country, in the year1335, and began its conquest, which was after-wards followed up, in 1541, by the celebrated Pe-dro de Valdivia, who founded its first cities, andafterwards met with a disgraceful death at thehands of the Indians, having been made prisonerby them in the year 1551, 'These Indians are themost valorous and warlike of all in America ) theyhave maintained, by a continual warfare, their inde-pendence of the Spaniards, from whom they areseparated by the river Biobio. This is the limitof the country possessed by them ; and thoughthe Spaniards have penetrated through differententrances into their territories, and there built va-rious towns and fortresses, yet have all these beenpulled down and destroyed by those valiant de-

fenders of their liberty and their country. Theyare most dexterous in the management of the lance,sword, arrow, and w^eapons made of Macanawood ; and although they are equally so in thepractice of fire-arms, they use them but seldom,saying, “ they are only fit for cowards.” Theyare very agile and dexterous horsemen, and theirhorses are excellent, since those which run wild,and which are of the A ndalucian breed, have notdegenerated, or become at all inferior to the bestwhich that country produces. The part whichthe Spaniards possess in this kingdom extends itswhole length, from the aforesaid valley of Copiapoto the river Sinfordo, (unfathomable), beyond theisle of Chiloe, in lat. 44°-, but it is only 45 leagues,at the most, in breadth ; so that the country is, asit were, a slip between the S. sea and the cordillera ofthe Andes ; from these descend infinite streams andrivers, watering many fertile and beautiful valleys,and forming a country altogether charming andluxurious ; the soil abounds in every necessary for theconvenience and enjoyment of life, producing, inregular season, all the most delicate fruits of Ame-rica and Europe. The summer here begins inSeptember, the estio (or hot summer) in December,the autumn in March, and the winter in June.The climate is similar to that of Spain, and thetemperature varies according to the elevation ofthe land ; since the provinces lying next to ‘Peru,and which are very low, are of a warm tempera-ture, and lack rain, having no other moisture thanwhat they derive from some small rivers descend-ing from the cordillera^ and running, for the spaceof 20 or SO leagues, into the sea. In the otherprovinces it rains more frequently, in proportionas they lay more to the s. especially in the winter,from April to September ; for which reason theyare more fertile. These provinces are watered bymore than 40 rivers, which also descend from thecordillera, being formed by the rains, and the snowmelted in the summer, swelling them to a greatheight. They generally abound in fish of themost delicate flavour, of which are eels, trout, ba~gres, reyeques, ahogatos, pejereyes, and manyothers. The sea-coast is of itself capable of main-taining a vast population by the shell-fish foundupon it, of twenty different sorts, and all of the mostdelicious flavour. Other fish also is not wanting ;here are plenty of skate, congers, robalos, sienasya species of trout, viejas, soles, machuelos, dorados,pejegallos, pulpos, pampanos, corbinas, pejereyes,and tunnies, which come at their seasons onthe coast, in the same manner as in the Alraadra-bas of Andaluda. For some years past they saltdown cod-fish in these parts, which, although of a

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