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were born here at Yanovka.’ ‘Then why did Mother say

library 2023-12-02 02:59:0831969

The triumph of the Jesuits in Asuncion was but momentary, following the general rule of triumphs, which take their way along the street with trumpets and with drums amid the acclamations of the crowd, and then, the pageant over, the chief actors fall back again into the struggles and the commonplace of ordinary life.

were born here at Yanovka.’ ‘Then why did Mother say

Between the years 1728 and 1730 the people of Asuncion had been more eager in pursuit of liberty* than was their usual wont. The citizens were divided into camps, and daily fought amongst the sandy streets and shady orange-bordered lanes which radiate from almost every quarter of the town. The rival bands of madmen were styled respectively the `Communeros' and the `Contrabandos', and to the first Antequera throughout his residence in Lima gave all the assistance in his power. Neither of the two seems to have had the most elementary idea of real patriotism, or any wish for anything beyond the momentary triumph of the miserable party to which each belonged. One doctrine they held in common -- a hatred of the Jesuits, and of the influence they exercised against the enslaving of the Indians, which was the aim of `Contrabandos' and of `Communeros' alike. One of the rival chieftains of the factions having fled for refuge to the missions, the people of Asuncion assembled troops to take him from his sanctuary by force. Arrived upon the frontier of the Jesuit territory, they found themselves opposed by an army of the Indians, who looked so formidable that the troops retired to Asuncion, and the leaders, foiled in the field, and not having force to attack the Jesuits in their own territory, set vigorously to inflame the minds of the people against them.

were born here at Yanovka.’ ‘Then why did Mother say

-- * Liberty is commonly only attained by blood. It is, I think, quite legitimate in playing the liberty game to kill all who disagree with your party, or to banish them. In these degenerate times, lovers of liberty have to stop short at calumny, just as if they were mere tyrants. --

were born here at Yanovka.’ ‘Then why did Mother say

They worked with such success that when, in 1732, the news of Antequera's death reached Paraguay, the people, inflamed with the idea that he was sacrificed to the hatred of the Jesuits, rose and expelled them once again. The constant expulsions of the Jesuits from Asuncion, the turmoils in the State, and the fact that every now and then the Indians had to take arms to defend their territory, acted most mischievously on the reductions, both in Paraguay and in those between the Parana and Uruguay. Whole tribes of Indians, recently converted, went back to the woods; land was left quite untilled, and on the outskirts of the mission territory the warlike tribes of Indians, still unsubdued, raided the cattle, killed the neophytes, and carried off their wives as slaves. But still, in spite of all, the Indians clung to their priests -- as they said, from affection for the religious care they had bestowed, but quite as possibly from the instinctive knowledge that, between the raiding Portuguese and the maddening patriots in Asuncion, their only safeguard against slavery lay in the Jesuits. Most fortunately for Paraguay at the time (1734), Don Bruno de Zavala, perhaps the most energetic of the Spaniards in the King's service in America, was Viceroy in the River Plate. Having received orders to quiet the dissensions in Asuncion, in spite of being nearly seventy years of age, and having lost an arm in the Italian wars, he marched at once, taking but forty soldiers in his train, as, war being imminent with Portugal, it was not safe to deplete the slender forces in the River Plate. Arrived in Paraguay, he entered the Jesuit missions at the Reduction of San Ignacio Guazu,* and, having appealed to the provincial of the Order for his aid, speedily found himself at the head of a large army of the Indians. After some skirmishes he was in a position to enter Asuncion and force the people to receive him as their Governor. By one of those revulsions so frequent in a crowd of reasonable men, the people begged him to invite the Jesuits to return. They did so (1735), and were received in state, the Governor, the Bishop, and the chief clergy and officials of the place attending Mass in the Cathedral with lighted candles in their hands. His duty over, Don Bruno de Zavala set off for Chile, where he had been appointed Governor, and on his journey, at the town of Santa Fe, died suddenly, exhausted with the battles, marchings and countermarchings, rebellions, Indian incursions, the turbulence of the people in the towns, and the other cares which formed the daily duties of a Spanish officer in South America at the middle of the eighteenth century.** The next ten years were on the whole peaceful and profitable for the Indians of the missions and for the Jesuits. The Indians followed quietly their Arcadian lives, except when now and then a contingent of them was required to assist in any of the wars, which at that time were ceaseless throughout the eastern part of South America. The Jesuits pushed out their spiritual frontiers, advancing on the north amongst the Tobatines of the woods, and on the west endeavouring to spread their colonies amongst the Chiriguanas and other of the Chaco tribes.

-- * `Guazu' = `great' in Guarani. It is frequent in place-names both in Paraguay and Corrientes. ** Dean Funes, vol. ii., cap. xii., p. 372, says of Zavala: `Por caracter era manso, pero uso/ algunas veces de severidad, porque sabia que para servir bien a los hombres es preciso de cuando en cuando tener valor de desagradarlos. . . . La pobreza en que murio despues de tantos an~os de mando, es una prueba clasica de que no estaba contagiado con esa commun flaqueza de los que gobieran en America.' --

From the conquest of Peru, when those Indians who had been but recently brought under the empire of the Incas retreated into the Chaco, it had been the refuge of the fiercest and most indomitable tribes. The Spanish colonists, the ardour of the first conquest spent, had settled down mainly to agricultural pursuits. Few had efficient firearms, and on the whole, though turbulent amongst themselves, they had become unwarlike.* The very name of the wild Indians (Los Indios Bravos) spread terror up and down the frontiers. This terror, which I remember still prevalent both in Mexico and on the pampas of the Argentine Republic, not more than five-and-twenty years ago, was keener upon the confines of the Chaco than anywhere in South America, except, perhaps, in Chile, upon the frontiers of Araucania.

-- * In the long and interesting letter of Jaime Aguilar, the provincial of the Jesuits in Paraguay, to the King of Spain (Philip V., 1737), occurs the following passage:

`Y si alguna vez, que no son muchas, se animan los Espan~oles a perseguir y castigar los Indios, muchos huyen de la tierra, o se esconden, por no ir a la entrada. . . . Otras (vezes) quando llegan alla/, el Enemigo les quitan la Cavallada, dexandolos a pie y se vuelven a casa como pueden.'

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