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YAMS, OR SWEET POTATOES.
And they brought unto them of the bread which they made; and behold it was dry and mouldy*. And they made of the roots of herbs which grew their countryf, unleavened cakest which were not
And the appearance of this bread was like the biscottog now made in the town of Pisa, which is in Tuscany. And the men were much astonished when they saw the Spanish weapons of war, especially when they heard the voice of their guns, and saw the burning flame of fire; and they said, “ Surely they are sons of the gods : for like unto them they give out their voice, and who will say unto them, “What do ye ?|?” And they feared
l them much, and brought them into their houses, and gave them their silver and their gold, and took for themselves of the knives and of the instruments of iron which the men of Spain had with them; for there had been seen neither iron nor copper at all in that country, from the day that they began to dwell in it. And the Spaniards took thence provision of all that they found, and departed thence, and returned to the land of Spain in joy, filled with every good thing; and they gave thanks to God, and announced to their brethren all
* Josh. ix. 5. + Rabbi Joseph probably means to describe potatoes. I Lev. viii. 26.
§ i. e. Biscuit. Il Job. ix, 12.
CRUELTY OF THE SPANIARDS.
that they had done, and all the travail with which they had met on the way. And many envied
. them. From that day forward, many of the lowest people of the country became likewise disposed to go thither to the place of gold. But some of them found nothing, save a place of briers and thorns, and died on the way of hunger and thirst, and for want of every thing. And many reached their desired haven*, and returned home with joy, and wealth, and riches, and plenty of every thing. And it came to pass, as often as the Spaniards went thither, that they took captive the inhabitants of that country to be unto them servants, and handmaidens, and tributaries, unto this day. The Spaniards took also of their daughters some to be confectioners, and cooks, and bakers; and there was none to deliver out of their hands. And the cry of the inhabitants of that country went up unto heaven.
591. And the land was widely spread before them, and blessed by the Lord. And their men were as horses and mules, they knew nothing; neither did they understand, they walked in darkness : and the Spaniards were instead of eyes unto them. [nd] And it came to pass, when the Spaniards began to multiply upon the face of the earth, that the
* Ps. cvii. 30.
AMERICANS ASTONISHED AT WRITING.
land was before them as the garden of the Lord, even as the land of Egypt; and they took possession thereof, and abode therein, and called those places by names after their own manner in their land. And they taught the inhabitants of the country statutes and laws according to their own pleasure, and they believed in their God and their king; they learned their works, and when they saw the schemes* of the Spaniards and their strength, they reckoned them to be prophets and messengers of God; and they feared them much.
592. And what was for them the greatest wonder of knowledge and too high for them, was, in their eyes, the mystery of writing and inditing, when they saw that a man spake with his neighbour from a far country, by means of a written roll, as small as the hand of a man; therefore they said, “This is the finger of God.” And the name of the man who found this country was Americo, and they called it America after his name;-but Peru and Klobikanah were the names of that country at first; and the Spaniards called it the New World until this day. And the emperor Charles sent thither many princes and honorable men, and men of valor, and horsemen, by way of the sea, in ships, and wherever they set the soles of their feet they subdued every thing
GOLD AND SILVER MINES.
with a mighty hand; the changes of time gavę every thing into their hands. And the emperor appointed there a viceroy, to whom the country then belonged. And the Spaniards warred also with the neighbouring kings, and drave them out and abode there in their stead. They found there also great cities, whose inhabitants were intelligent men, instructed in science. And they had statutes and judgments like as in this country : however, they went after Baal, and their sons they passed through the fire to Moloch unto that day.
593. They found there also a great river in which was plenty of silver and gold, and gold mines and precious stones; and nothing like this was seen until this day. And they brought also thence plenty of all sorts of spices, and cattle and beasts, fowls and cows, which were not found by us from the beginning of our existence until that day. They found there also sons of Anak* like to the height of cedars was their height; and they brought some of them to Spain bound with chains, and the Spaniards were in their eyes like grasshoppersf. And they went out again towards sunrise. And they reached the borders of the country of the Great Khan, the sultan, who had many provinces and great cities without number. And they warred
i. e. Giants.
+ Numb. xiii. 33.
MAGELLAN-A. D. 1520.
against his men, and no man could stand before them, for the fear of the Spaniards fell upon them. And they went as far as a great city, whose name was Timistitan*, whose merchants were princes, and their men the nobles of the earth ; and they took them with subtlety, and gave them over to be plundered: so the country was theirs until this day. And Timistitan was a great city full of people, and situated in the midst of a great river; and the water was like a wall unto them round about, like the great city of Venice. And there was every day war between the Spaniards and the men of the great Khan at that time. However, the king did not go in person to the great battles, for he was far off from thence; and he did set his heart to do this. And Ferdinand Magellano was a mighty man of valor, and very experienced on the sea and on land; so Charles, king of Spain, gave him five large ships in the year one thousand five hundred and twenty. He put in the same about five hundred men, and they went also to spoil all the cities of the same country, which were on the banks of the sea, whithersoever the wind should suffer them to go. And they went and found many islands; namely, the Molucca islands; and they went ashore. And the inhabitants of that country went out and put