Bartoleme de Las Casas, Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies. (). The Indies were discovered in the year one thousand four hundred and. Bartolome de Las Casas’ The Devastation of the Indies: A brief Account and the context of. Spanish colonisation reveal that the colonisers were repressive and. THE DEVASTATION. OF THE INDIES: A BRIEF ACCOUNT by Bartolomé de Las Casas. T. THE INDIES’ were discovered in the year one thou- sand four.

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The Devastation of the Indies is an eyewitness account of the first modern genocide, a story of greed, hypocrisy, and cruelties so grotesque as to rival the worst of our own century. Here we must observe, that they entered into these Kingdoms and territories, which for the abundance of people ought to have fhe the joy of all true Christians upon no pretence, but as they said to vasas them to slavery.

And thus the Spaniards being blinded and forsaken by God, and given over to a reprobate sense, considered not how unagreeable both to the Law of God and nature were their proceedings against the Indians, how unjustly they went about to destroy them by force of arms, and not only to cast them out of their Country, but to torture them and cut them in pieces: The Indians beholding this unheard of cruelty and injustice committed upon such a number of innocent souls, having with long patience endured the captivity of their King, who had charg’d them to be quiet, now ran all to their arms, and falling upon the Spaniards, wounded many, the rest narrowly escaping: The island of Cuba is nearly as long as the distance between Valladolid and Rome; ,as is now almost completely depopulated.

Now being in this manner gathered together in a great and wide place, part of the Spaniards all in arm, stood at the door to keep the rest out, while others with Swords and Lances kill’d the innocent Lambs, so that not one escaped.

Having committed so many detestable slaughters upon the Indians in Mexico, and other places distant ten, fifteen and twenty miles from thence, this tyrannical plague proceeded to infest and depopulate the City of Panuco.

They are of a very apprehensive and docible wit, and capable of all good learning, and very apt to receive our Religion, which when lzs have but once tasted, they are carried on with a very ardent and zealous desire to make a further progress in it; so that I have heard divers Spaniards confess that they had nothing else to hinder them from enjoying heaven, but their ignorance of the true God. The least felicitous of them were more fertile and beautiful than the gardens of the King of Seville.


Bartolomé de Las Casas

But the cruelties and injuries of the Tyrants that went from these parts to depopulate which they called discover other Regions overtaking them; many Indians were by them slain, while they sought to defend themselves in the rocks: Afterwards when they are landed, where they are carried to be sold, there is no man that would not be mov’d with compassion, to see both old and young, men and women, naked and hungry, drop and faint as they go along.

These things, most invincible Cesar, I have learnt by experience. The men they killed only for their hands and feet, for those they accounted dainties.

In the year And this I also dare affirm, that the Indians had always just reason to raise war against the Spaniards, casaw that the Spaniards on rhe contrary, had never any legal cause of quarrel against them, but only always an intention to exercise a fury on them greater than the most consuming and prodigal rage, that ever made the worst of tyrants infamous.

A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies – Wikipedia

Into the Province of Cuzcatan, where the City of our Savior lws situated, being a Country, which together with the neighboring sea coast is extended about forty or fifty miles in length; and also into the City of Cuzcatan it self, which is the Metropolis of the whole Country, he was received with very great joy, the Indians expecting his coming, laden with a present of above thirty thousand Turkies and other things necessary for their refreshment. And when they cover their shoulders it is with a square cloth no more than two varas in size.

Out of fifty or a hundred Virgins which he had chosen out, he exchanged the best of them for the smallest vessel of Wine, Oyle, Vinegar or Pork: John where the sold half, and from thence also to the Island of Hispaniola, where they sold the rest.

Martha, out of which it is manifest, what strange things have been committed, and are daily committed by them.

Retrieved from ” https: A decisive part in the elaboration of the general principles of human rights was…. I faint, kill me, and put an end to my days: The chief Lord of the Province they took captive, putting him to several torments to squeeze his Gold from him; but he escaping fled to the Mountains, and thereupon his Subjects that lay hid among the Woods and Bushes began to raise a tumult; The Spaniards followed destroying abundance of the people; and as for those who were taken alive, they were publicly sold for slaves.

It was republished inby Jan Evertszoon Cloppenburchalongside the book Origin and progress of the disturbances in the Netherlands by Dutch historian Johannes Gysius. Among the rest, a certain seditious rebel entering into a region bordering upon Guatemala, burnt up their City, killing the Inhabitants, and laying waste all the Country, which he did on purpose, that if he should be pursued by his enemies, they might be liable to the revenge of the Indians as they passed along; which happened accordingly, for there the chief Commander from whose power the foresaid Captain had rebell’d, was slain; but he was succeeded by many other fell tyrants, who with their wonted cruelties and captivity destroyed the people, selling them to those that brought garments and other provision, and by that kind of servitude, which they practiced from the year All these above mentioned abominations being done, they reduced the rest to a tyrannical subjection, for which cause they thought that they were only sent thither.


Although during his first 12 years in America Las Casas was a willing participant in the conquest of the Caribbean, he did not indefinitely remain indifferent to the fate of the indigenous peoples.

During his final years Las Casas came to be the indispensable adviser both to the Council of the Indies and to the king on many of the problems relating to the Indies. As a young man, Las Casas participated in several military expeditions in the West Indies. His several works include Historia de las Indias first printed in There was a vast number of people in this Province, for it contained divers cities above four mile in length: Here a Cacicus or Governor offer’d himself to the service of the King of Castile, upon condition, that he would take care that all the Country from Isabella to St.

Which being done for a daily continuance, in ten or twelve years they made a clean riddance of the inhabitants out of this place. Views Read Edit Devastatiob history.

The Devastation of the Indies

But at length being taken, for no other reason, but because he fled from those that sought his life, and defended himself that he might not be tormented to death, he was by the Spaniards burnt alive. Neither were they ashamed to lade and burthen Women with childe, as if they had been only beasts for carriage. Of the Province of Nicaragua In the year The Continent is distant from this about Two ds miles, stretching it self out in length upon the sea fade for laz Ten thousand miles in length.