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The geographical and historical dictionary of America and the West Indies [volume 1]
C A R I B E.
It was formerly a very rich tract of land, si-tuate on the shore of the river Cazanare, a streamwhich crosses and stops the pass into the coun-try and for this reason there was a consider-able establishment formed here by persons whobelonged to tlie curacy of Santa Rosa de Chire.Its temperature is hot, but it is very fertile, andabounds in productions, which serve to provide forthe other settlements belonging to the same mis-sions : at present it is under the care of the reli-gious order of St. Domingo.
CARIBANA, a large country, at the presentday called Guayana Maritania, or Nueva Anda-iucia Austral. It extends from the mouth of theriver Orinoco to the mouth of the Marahon ; com-prehends the Dutch colonies of Esquibo, Surinam,and Berbice, and the French colony of Cayenne.It takes its name from the Caribes Indians, whoinhabit it, and who are very fierce and cruel,although upon amicable terms with the Dutch.Nearly the whole of this province is uncultivated,full of woods and mountains, but watered bymany rivers, all of which run for the most partfrom s. to e. and empty themselves into the sea ;although some flow from s. ton. and enter the Ori-noco. The climate, though warm and humid, ishealthy ; the productions, and the source of itscommerce, are sugar-cane, some cacao, wild wax,and incense. The coast, inhabited by Europeans,forms the greater part of this tract of country, ofwhich an account will be found under the respec-tive articles.
Caribe, Caribbee, or Charaibes, someislands close upon the shore of the province andgovernment of Cumana, near the cape of TresPuntas. [The Caribbee islands in the West In-dies extend in a semicircular form from the islandof Porto Rico, the easternmost of the Antilles, tothe coast of S. America. The sea, thus inclosedby the main land and the isles, is called the Ca-ribbean sea; and its great channel leads n. zo. tothe head of the gulf of Mexico through the sea ofHonduras. The chief of these islands are, SantaCruz, Sombuca, Anguilla, St. Martin, St. Bar-tholomew, Barbuda, Saba, St. Eustatia, St. Chris-topher, Nevis, Antigua, Montserrat, Guadalupe,Dcseada, Mariagalante, Dominica, Martinica,St. Vincent, Barbadoes, and Grenada. These areagain classed into Windward and Leeward isles bv
seamen, with regard to the usual courses of shipsfrom Old Spain or the Canaries to Cartagenaor New Spain and Porto Bello. The geographi-caltablesand maps class them into Great and LittleAntilles ; and authors vary much concerning thislast distinction. See Antilles. The Charaibesor Caribbecs were the ancient natives of the Wind-ward islands ; hence many geographers confine theterm to these isles only. Most of these were an-ciently possessed by a nation of cannibals, the ter-ror of the mild anti inotfensive inhabitants of His-paniola, who frequently expressed to Columbustheir dread of these fierce invaders. Thus, whenthese islands were afterwards discovered by thatgreat man, they were denominated Charibbeanisles. The insular Charaibs are supposed to beimmediately descended from the Galibis Indians,or Charaibes of S. America. An ingenious andlearned attempt to trace back the origin of the Ca-ribes to some emigrants from the ancient hemis-phere may be found in Bryan Edwards ; and itis to the valuable work of this author that we areindebted for the following illustrations of the man-ners and customs of this people. — The Caribesare avowedly of a fierce spirit and warlike dispo-sition. Historians have not failed to notice theseamong the most distinguishable of their qualities.Dr. Robertson, in Note X Cl II. to the first vol. ofhisHistory of America, quotes from a MS. Historyof Ferdinand and Isabella, Avrittenby Andrew Ber-naldes, the cotemporary and friend of Columbus,the folloAving instance of the bravery of the Caribes :A canoe with four men, two Avomen, and a boy, un-expectedly fell in with Columbus’s fleet. A Spanish,bark with 25 men was sent to take them; and the fleet,in the mean time, cut off their communication withthe shore. Instead of giving way to despair, theCaribes seized their arms with imdauntcd resolu-tion, and began the attack, wounding several ofthe Spaniards, although they had targets as wellas other defensive armour ; and even after thecanoe was overset, it was with no little difficultyand danger that some of them Avere secured, asthey continued to defend themselves, and to usetheir bows with great dexterity while swimmingin the sea. Herrera has recorded the same anec-dote. Restless, enterprising, and ardent, it wouldseem they considered war as the chief end of theircreation, and the rest of the human race as theirnatural prey ; for they devoured, without re-morse, the bodies of such of their enemies (themen at least) as fell into their hands. Indeed,there is no circumstance in the history of mankindbetter attested than the universal prevalence ofthese practices among them. Columbus was not]
C H A
C H A
(CHARAIBES, See Caribe.)
CHARALA, a settlement of the jurisdiction ofthe town of San Gil, in the Nuevo Reyno de Gra-nada, is, at it were, a suburb to the settlement ofMongui, and it is (being very poor and reduced)annexed to the curacy of the same. Its tempera-ture is mild, and abounds in pure good water, andin the productions of a hot climate.
CHARAPA, a settlement of the head settlementand alcaldia mayor of Periban in Nueva España ;situate in the loftiest part of the sierra, fromwhence its temperature is so cold that it is seldomany crops can be gathered from the seeds that aresown. It contains 209 families of Indians, 80 inthe wards of its district, and a convent of the reli-gious order of St. Francis : lies e. of its head settle-ment.
CHARAPOTO, a settlement of the district ofPuerto Viejo, and government of Guayaquil, in thekingdom of Quito, at a small distance from thesea-coast and bay of its name ; this title beingalso applied to the point which forms the samebay.
CHARBON, Rio del, a river of N. Carolina,which runs n. and enters the Conhaway. Thewhole of it abounds in cataracts, and its watersthrow up immense quantities of coal, which wasthe cause of its being thus named.
CHARCA, a settlement of the province and
corregimiento of Chayanta in Peru ; annexed tothe curacy of Sacaca.
CHARCAS, an extensive province of the king-dom of Peru, composed of various others. Its ju-risdiction comprehends the district of this royalaudience, which begins at Vilcanota, of the cor-regimiento of Lampa and bishopric of Cuzco, andextends as far as Buenos Ayres to the s. It isbounded on the e. by Brazil, the meridian servingas a limit ; and reaching w. as far as the corregi-miento of Atacama, which is of its district, andforms the most n. part of this province in that di-rection, and being closed in on its other sides bythe kingdom of Chile : is 300 leagues in length, in-cluding the degrees of latitude from 20° to 28° s . :is in many parts very thinly peopled, and coveredwith large desert tracts, and rugged and impene-trable mountains, and again by the elevated cordil-leras of the Andes, and the spacious llanuras orpampas, which serve to mark its size and the relativedistances of its territories. Its temperature through-out is extremely cold, although there are not want-ing parts which enjoy a moderate warmth. At thetime that this province was in the possession of theIndians, and previous to the entrance of the Spa-niards, many well-inhabited provinces went jointlyunder the name of Charcas ; and the conquest ofthese was first undertaken by Capac Yupanqui,fifth Emperor ; but he was not able to pass the ter-ritory of the Tutiras Indians and of Chaqui. Hereit was that his conquests terminated : nor did thesubjection of these parts extend farther than Col-laysuyo until after his death, when he was suc-ceeded by his son the Inca Roca, sixth Emperor,who carried on still farther the victories which hadbeen already gained, conquering all the nations asfar on as that of Chuquisaca, where he afterwardsfounded the city of this name, called also La Plata.After that the Spaniards had reduced that part ofPeru, extending from Tumbez to Cuzco, and thatthe civil wars and dissensions which existed be-tween these were at an end, they endeavoured tofollow up their enterprise by making a conquest ofthe most distant nations. To this end, in 1538,Gonzalo Pizarro sallied forth with a great force,and attacking the Charcas and the Carangues,found in them such a spirited opposition, that afterseveral battles he was brought to think this objectwas nearly impracticable : this idea was strength-ened by the reception he had met with from theChuquisacas, who in many conflicts had given himconvincing proofs of their valour and warlikespirit ; indeed it is thought, that had he not just