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The geographical and historical dictionary of America and the West Indies [volume 1]
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(==CATORCE, or La Purissima ConcepcionDe Alamos de Catorce==, one of the richest minesof New Spain, and in the intendancy of San LuisPotosi. The real de Catorce, however, has onlybeen in existence since 1773, when Don SebastianCoronado and Don Bernarbe Antonio de Zepedadiscovered these celebrated seams, which yield an-nually the value of more than from 18 to ^20 mil-lions of francs, or from 730,460/. to 833,500/.sterling.)
CAUAILLON, a settlement and parish of theFrench, in their possessions in St. Domingo ; situ-ate on the coast and at the w. head, near the bayof its name, between the settlements of Torbec andLos Cayos.
CAUAIU, a small river of the same provinceand government as the former. It runs w. andenters the Parana, between the rivers Verde andYocare-mini.
Cauaiu, a bay of the same island, opposite theIsla Vaca or Cow island.
CAUASAN, San Francisco Xavier de, atown of the province of Copala, and kingdom ofNueva Vizcaya ; situate in the midst of the sierraof Topia, on the coast of the S. sea, on the shoreof the river Plastin. It has a small port for lesservessels, which has oftentimes been invaded byenemies. It is a curacy administered by the cler-gy, and to which two small settlements of MexicaaIndians are annexed.
CAUCA, a large and copious river of the pro-vince and government of Popayán, which risesin the mountains of the government of Mariquita,and running 160 leagues from s. to?i. in whichcourse it collects the ’waters of many other rivers,it passes near the cities of Popaj'iin, Buga, Cali,and Anserma ; from whence it is navigable until itenters the large river of the Magdalena. It is verynarrow where it passes through the cities of Po-payan and Antioquia, and forms the letter S, tak-ing its course through rocks, which render its na-vigation very dangerous. The Indians, however,are so dexterous in guarding their canoes fromrunning against the rocks by paddles, that it isvery seldom indeed that any accident occurs tothem. They call this strait Las Mamas de Cara-manta, from a city which was here of this name.Many make this navigation for the purpose ofavoiding a round-about journey of many days, andin a bad road through the mountains ; and it issaid that some have had the good fortune to dis-cover a route by water free from all difficulties,and that this was actually made by the pontificateof the bishop of Popayan, Don Diego de Mon-toy.
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another whose note resembles atrumpet. It aboundsin quadrupeds, as mules, horses, and cattle of thelarge and small kind, the antas, which is calledhere gran bestia^ (great beast), huanacos, vicunas,llamas, or native sheep, stags, bears, ant-eaters,wild bears, otters, tigers, mountain cats, visca-chas, (or large hares), large and small foxes, tor-toises, higuanos, and others ; all of which affordfood to tlie voracious Indians. In this provinceare also found many insects, such as scorpions,vipers, snakes of several kinds, some of two heads,and some with rattles, squirrels, mocamucas, am-palabas, or what are called in other countries owls,which are extremely deformed, and attract smallanimals to them by their screeching, quiriquinchosof various sorts, glow-worms, a great variety offlies and spiders, and of these a large kind veryvenomous, silk-worms, Avhich, if taken care of,would yield an abundance of silk, locusts, Avhichare eaten by the Indians both dry and fresh ; also ants,the beds of which are so deep as to render the roaddangerous for men and for horses to pass, theseinsects being of such an undaunted and trouble-some nature as often to attack a viper or locust inlarge bodies, and in some settlements to enter ahouse like a plundering army, devouring every in-sect and worm in their way, not leaving a singleeatable thing untouched ; scarcely shall these havefinished their operations, but they are succeeded byanother band, and indeed it is very liazardous todisturb them, since they bite very fiercely andcause much pain. This province has no mines,although it is said that formerly some were workedby the Indians ; some little time since, however,one of iron was discovered, when it was thought tohave been of gold. This extensive and pleasantcountry is inhabited by a multitude of infidel In-dians, of different nations and of various barbarouscustoms. It was casually discovered in 1586 byJuan de Banos, a native of Chuquisaca, a factorof the settlement of Yala ; he had an Indian slavewho used frequently to run away from his masterfor a time and return again, and who being askedonce whither he went, replied toChacu; this itAvas tliat led to its discovery, and to the subse-•quent attempts at several times made to conquerit; first by Martin de Ledesma, afterwards by.Tuan Manso, Don Pedro Lasarte, and lastly byD >11 Christoval de Sanabri, all of which were in-effectual. San Francisco Solano entered the coun-try, and succeeded in reducing some of the nativesto the Christian faith ; these, however, soon re-turned to their idolatry. The regulars of the com-pany of Jesuits likewise engaged themselves in thereduction of this country in 1587, the first of their
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preachers here being Father Alonzo Barzana,called the apostle of Peru ; they continued herefor a number of years, and during their stayfounded seven settlements. The inhabitants ofthe whole province are computed at 100,000.Catalogue of the nations which inhabit Chaco.
(Chaco, a large plain of the above province,in which Azara noticed a singular phenomenon,which he calls a large piece of pure iron, flexibleand malleable in the forge, but at the same timeso hard as not to be cut, though obedient to thefile. It contains about 468 cubic feet, and lieson the surface of the large plain of Chaco, on whichnot a single stone excepting this is to be found ;and what is still more curious, there is no volcanowithin 300 leagues, nor any iron mine to be heardof in that part of tho country.)