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EL DORADO-THE GILDED KING.
The face was apparently beautiful by nature, but ren
BY D. P. KIDDER.
Two centuries and a half ago, the fable of El Dorado filled the public mind of Europe. Especially were the maritime nations of that day excited by its lure. The new world had been discovered. Specimens of its treasure had been deported. The leaven of desire for its undiscovered possessions had spread from court to camp, from princes to beggars, till the whole mass of society seemed in commotion.
dered still more interesting by the silent beauty of death. EL DORADO-THE GILDED KING. The smile of innocence was on the lips-the smile that death could not remove-the smile that appeared as if some angel had had a hand in forming it-the smile that spoke of heaven. On the monument was simply inscribed the name, EMILY. I know not when I have met with any thing that so touched my heart. The scene brought up before me the image of many a lovely one whom I had seen in youthful beauty deposited in the grave. The emotions, the thoughts of that hour cannot soon be forgotten. I lingered over the picture,|| nor minded the lapse of time, till the sun of a long summer day was gone down, and the shades of evening were falling around me. I looked up and found that the numerous visitors who had been wandering, as well as myself, among these haunts of melancholy interest, had all departed, and the gates were shut.
"I felt like one who treads alone
Some banquet hall deserted;
Whose lights are fled, whose garlands dead,
Slowly and sadly I retired. The keeper observed me ap-
Indiana Asbury University, October, 1841.
CHRIST THE SOUL OF MUSIC. ALL the music on carth which is not made by Christ and for him, is discordant in his ear, and as the raven's croak. As it was He who gave to David's harp so sweet a sound, vibrated its strings upon the hills of Bethlehem, inspired the royal bard with his own voice, and directed it in those lovely Psalms to personate himself; so it is no other than he, who still to the present day, opens the lips of them that sing with the spirit and with the understanding also. He opens their lips to show forth His praise; he gives harmony to their voices, and cheerful melody to their hearts. He lodges the psaltery in their bosoms, and plays upon the hidden chords of their inmost soul, with the breath of his mouth. He lives in their sighs of sorrow, and in their shouts of joy; in their longing plaints of love, and in their hymnings of praises; in their cries at the cross, and in their exultation upon that delectable hill, where, upon their foreheads, they find themselves sealed with the Spirit unto the day of redemption. In every breathing of the renewed nature, whether it be of a groan or of a hosanna; in every act of homage, and in every hailing of holy joy; in the great temple choir of the waiting Church militant, who all harmonize in that one ejaculation, "Amen, even so, come, Lord Jesus, come quickly!" there, even there is he, the Lord and his Spirit, present, as the life and inspiration of all, however poorly fitted such persons and things may seem for a glorious presence and habitation like his.-Krummacher.
Avarice personified, under the garb of adventure, bestrode the ocean. Her footsteps in the new world were bathed in blood. She paused not to complete her work of desolation in the fair islands of the Caribbean, till after she had disturbed the sacra penetralia of the continent. She caused the din of arms to resound alike in the primeval forest and the aboriginal city. She scaled the Andes and laid waste savannahs of both the Atlantic and the Pacific shores; while the price of her relentless tributes, the blood of the native inhabitants, was mingled with the waters of many an inland river. Not only was the fiery genius of the Spaniards and the Portuguese excited by these golden dreams, but even the drowsy Hollanders were aroused to strike for a share of the spoil; while the French and the English mingled in the strife, as their respective expeditions to the coast of Brazil, Guiana and the Islands, testify. It may be instructive to embody the more striking features of this "cunningly devised fable," of which every one has heard something, but of which few historians give particulars. It was told chiefly of South America, and perhaps the most satisfactory data respecting it are found in Southey's History of Brazil.
Wherever the early adventurers landed, their first inquiries were for the precious metals. Being themselves as ignorant of the native dialects as were the poor savages of European tongues, their intercourse for a long time must have been exceedingly vague. Not finding what they so eagerly coveted upon the coast, expectation pointed them inland, and they naturally interpreted the rude signs of the Indians to mean precisely what they wished. Perchance, also, when the natives were able to comprehend what was wanted, from their desire to please the strangers, which they could accomplish in no other way, they narrated to them as well as they might, some ill-defined traditions of a better land toward the setting sun. Thus there originated along the whole Spanish main, rumors of an inland country abounding with gold. These rumors may have related to the kingdoms of Bogota and Tunja, now New Granada. But in that country there were also rumors of a rich land at a distance, applicable to Peru; while in Peru similar accounts were gathered referring back to Granada. Thus adventurers from both sides were allured to continue pursuit long after the game was taken.
"An imaginary kingdom was soon shaped out as the object of their quest, and stories concerning it were not
EL DORADO-THE GILDED KING.
more easily invented than believed. It was said that a younger brother of Atabalipa fled after the destruction of the Incas, took with him the main part of their treasures, and founded a greater empire than that of which his family had been deprived. Sometimes this imagined emperor was called the great Paytiti; sometimes the great Moxo, (pronounced Mo-sho;) sometimes the Enim or great Paru. In Mexico the great Quivira was what the Enim was to Peru, the imaginary successor of the fallen dynasty. An impostor at Lima affirmed that he had been in his capital, the city of Manoa, where not fewer than three thousand workmen were employed in the silversmiths' street: he even produced a map of the country, in which he had marked a hill of gold, another of silver, and a third of salt. The columns of the palace were described as of porphyry and alabaster, the galleries of ebony and cedar, the throne was of ivory, and the ascent to it was by steps of gold.
“When D. Martin del Bareo was writing his Argentina, a report was current in Paraguay that the court of the great Moxo had been discovered. Don Martin communicates it as certain intelligence, and expresses his regret that Cabeza de Vaca had turned back from the Xarayes, for had he proceeded in that direction he would have been the fortunate discoverer.
"This palace, says he, stood in a lake island. It was built of white stone; at the entrance were two towers, and between them a column of five-and-twenty feet in height; on its top was a large silver moon, and two living lions were fastened to its base with chains of gold. "Having passed by these keepers, you came into a quadrangle planted with trees and watered by a silver fountain, which spouted through four golden pipes. The gate of the palace was of copper; it was very small, and its bolt was received into the solid rock. Within, a golden sun was placed upon an altar of silver, and four lamps were kept burning before it day and night. Manifestly as such fictions were borrowed from || the romances of Almadis and Palmerin, they were not too gross for the greedy avarice of those to whom they were addressed. This imaginary kingdom obtained the name of El Dorado, from the fashion of its lord, who had the merit of being in a savage costume. His body was anointed every morning with a certain fragrant gum of great price, and gold-dust was then blown upon him through a tube, till he was covered with it: the whole was washed off at night. This the barbarian thought a more magnificent and costlier attire than could be afforded by any other potentate in the world, and hence the Spaniards called him EL DORADO, or THE GILDED ONE."
Thus we have, in brief, the fable which has cost Spain a greater expense of life and treasure than all her conquests in the New World. A history of all the expeditions that were undertaken for the conquest of El Dorado, would form a volume not less interesting than extraordinary. In connection with one of them, it becomes necessary to introduce the name of Sir Walter Raleigh, which is more honorably associated with the discovery and early settlement of our own country.
This enterprising knight, after several voyages to North America, was sent out in an expedition against the Spaniards at Panama. Having thus gained some knowledge of the northern regions of South America, he undertook in 1595, the discovery and conquest of Guiana. Anxiety to excite the greatest possible interest in his enterprise, seems to have prompted him to appeal at once to the cupidity and marvelousness of his countrymen, by publishing among other stories the following, which he must have known to be chronologically impossible, from the fact that Diogo de Ordas ascended the Oronoco the same year that Pizarro conquered Peru.
"A brother of Atabalipa fled after the destruction of the Incas, taking with him so great an army of the Orejones, that he conquered the interior of Guiana. When Diogo de Ordas was attempting the conquest of the Oronoco, and had advanced some three hundred miles up the river, his whole stock of powder was blown up. Provoked at the master of the munition, named Juan Martinez, for this negligence, he condemned him to death. Entreaty was made for his life; but the utmost mercy which Ordas would grant, was that he should be set adrift in a canoe without food. The stream carried him down, and in the evening a party of Guianians fell in with him. They had never seen a white man before; and having thus caught one, blind-folded him, and led him a journey of fourteen or fifteen days through the country, to be wondered at from town to town, till they arrived at Manoa, the great city of the Inca. At the entrance of this city they took the bandage from his eyes. It was noon when they entered it. He traveled along the streets till night, and the next day from sun-rise till sun-set, before he came to the palace. Here he was detained seven months, and not permitted to go without the walls. Leave was then given him to return, and a party of Guianians, laden with as much gold for him as they could carry, were ordered to re-conduct him to the Oronoco. When they drew near the river, the savages fell upon them and robbed them of all the treasure, except two calabashes full of golden beads, which they suffered him to keep, supposing them to contain food. He got to Trinidad, and from thence to Porto Rico. There he died, and at his death gave the beads to the Church for the good of his soul, leaving this account of his discovery."
The court dress, according to his description, was of gold-dust, conformably to the usual fable of El Dorado. This bait was rather too coarsely gilded, and Raleigh's expedition to Guiana appears never to have gained much eclat, notwithstanding his prediction that "the common soldier should there fight for gold and pay himself, instead of pence with plates of half a foot broad."
His book closes with a singular piece of flattery to his distinguished patroness, Queen Elizabeth. He desired that the very Amazons should "hear her virgin name;" and this was merely introductory to his prayer, "that he who is King of all kings, and Lord of lords, would put it into her heart, who is Lady of ladies, to conquer El Dorado."
EL DORADO-THE GILDED KING.
Reasons why the English were less attentive to these View him in the onward progress of sin, swaying representations appear to have grown out of their sad the sceptre over his blinded followers. How often is experience on a similar errand in the northern seas. In he not worshiped as a god, and enthroned upon the 1577, a stone which had been brought from the frozen || very altars of Jehovah. At one time he stoops to beregions of America was pronounced by the refiners of come a beast in the hands of Aaron; at another he London to contain gold. "The news excited the wake-stands erect as the image of the proud Nebuchadnezzar; ful avarice of the city, and there were not wanting those who endeavored to purchase of the Queen a lease of lands, whose loose minerals were so full of the precious metal." A fleet was immediately fitted out under the command of Martin Frobisher, for the express purpose of penetrating the Arctic El Dorado.
and in either case prostrate nations worship before him. Such is the peculiar nature of his monarchy that it seems equally perfect in the heart of an individual and in the sway of a community.
The idol temple is not erected merely on the shores of India, neither are its votive offerings accumulated, nor its incense fires kindled merely by the hand of Pagan priests.
The creations of that modern genius, Speculation, whether based upon the water lots of the Atlantic coast, or the paper cities of the west, have formed a chosen shrine at which thousands have offered sacrifices, and where the king has been present to "snuff the incense" of the licensed idolatry.
The ships, after encountering innumerable perils amid the icebergs of the polar sea, were at length freighted with fragments of earth, which to the credulous seemed plainly to contain the coveted treasure. Immediately hereafter occurred the first attempt of the English, under the patronage of Elizabeth, to plant an establishment in America. A magnificent fleet of fifteen sail was fitted out in part at her expense. "The sons of the English gentry embarked as volunteers, and one Enter the closet of the miser, unlock his chest of hundred persons were chosen to form the colony, which gold, and you behold his god. There every coin is was to secure to England a country more desirable than || guarded as sacredly as though it embodied the person Peru; a country too inhospitable to produce a tree or a of his proper sovereign. The prodigal worships the shrub, yet where gold lay not charily concealed in mines, same treasure in the shape of its purchased products— but glistening in heaps upon the surface. Twelve ves- the perishing pleasures of sense. sels were to return immediately with cargoes of the ore; three were ordered to remain and aid the settlement. The northwest passage was now become of less consideration; Asia itself could not vie with the riches of this hyperborean archipelago." The disastrous and mortifying results of such an expedition can easily be conjectured, and might well serve as lessons of experience for subsequent years.
Thus as idolatry is confined to no liturgy or form, but triumphs equally in the moody mysticism of fire worship, and the bloody rites of human sacrifice; so covetousness is equally at home in high places and in low, under the shade of the banyan and in the marble palace; while of all its Protean shapes, either may fitly serve as prime minister to the golden king.
Thus far we have only dwelt upon the willing homage of which "the gilded one" seems the passive object. Turn we now to behold him as the acting, moving spirit of his own wide empire. Like the serpent
Happy would it have been for our race, if these baseless vagaries had constituted either the first or the last vision of gold that has been seen in the day-dreams of But alas! the tale of El Dorado is too true an epit-in a bed of roses, his lothsome coils may sometimes be ome of the history of mankind. What age has not exhibited equal folly in similar pursuits, although fortunately most often on a smaller scale.
discovered beneath the very flowers of piety. Now he whispers in the ear of the prophet's servant, and sends Gehazi upon the infamous errand which doomed him to inherit the leprosy of Naaman. Again he superintends the bargain of Judas with the chief priests, and the Savior is bartered for thirty pieces of silver. Anon
Who can say that much of the strength of the first temptation, which brought "death into the world with all our woe," did not consist in this, that the forbidden fruit presented a golden hue? "It was pleasant to the || he plots the scheme for Ananias and Sapphira, and as eyes."
"A goodly tree far distant to behold,
Laden with fruit of fairest colors mixed,
It would at least appear that the tempter, from that pe
riod, chose the color of gold for his own adorning. It has thenceforth been at once the livery and the court dress
of the Prince of this world. He himself has been the great El Dorado, dwelling in "the palace of great Lucifer," which Milton represents as standing
"High on a hill far blazing as a mount, Raised on a mount with pyramids and towers, From diamond quarries hewn and rocks of gold." The dust that has glittered on his body has been sufficient, in the eyes of the world, to hide its Satanic deformity.
the father of lies teaches them, for the sake of gold to lie unto the Holy Ghost. Who but himself could have ever suggested to man, that the gifts of heaven could be purchased with money? Who has more profited by the traffic in which the pretended indulgences and graces of the Gospel have been dispensed-bought and sold like things of trade? Yet, as though neither content with this great gain, nor with the mad ambition to "rule in hell," a middle world has been invented, on the ground of whose imagined tortures to the dead, new taxes might be levied on the living. Can any one doubt its author? While thus disguised under the mantle of religion, the same spirit has not been idle in a different sphere. The very trappings of his royalty have been hung around the avenues of perdition, while
EL DORADO-THE GILDED KING.
his personal influence has not been withheld from the || agonies. In the siege of Mexico alone, no less than a support of any vice. At one moment he has rode aloft hundred thousand fell by the sword, besides those who on the black rolling fumes of the distillery, which have perished by famine, and other causes incident to war. served him as a car of triumph; at the next he has descended in the form of a menial to minister at the bar of alcohol. His mysterious agency has pervaded the resort of mirth and dissipation, while his majestic presence has often been witnessed at the haunts of the gamester. What dignitary could more fitly preside over an earthly hell!
Notwithstanding the rapid and relentless destruction of life in the West India Islands, yet an intelligent Portuguese writer represents it to have been insignificant compared with what was accomplished by the gold and slave hunters of Brazil. Yet Peru, under the conquest of Pizarro, was witness to the greatest atrocities. The Incas, or native emperors of that region of South America, were at once the most wealthy and the most refined of all the aboriginal sovereigns. The ruling monarch at this period extended to the strangers hospitality and kindness, commanding his attendants to offer them no injury.
The solid land has not been the only scene of his power. He has invaded the domains of ocean. Not content with a ceaseless tribute from the gains of commerce, he has freighted the smuggler's bark, has fitted out the slaver, has stowed away her cargo of human beings to endure the horrors of a middle passage, some- The perfidious wretches seized upon their benefactimes casting them overboard to lighten the vessel in a tor, put to death his alarmed subjects by thousands, and chase, at others selling them into a hopeless bondage. having extorted from the survivors "as many vessels His hand has been on the helm of the pirate ship, and of gold as would fill an apartment twenty-two feet long, his death-flag has waved at her peak, while the work sixteen wide, and eight high," as the purchase money of destruction has been done to many an innocent vic-of his freedom, they then burned alive the captive Inca. tim. Again he has stood by the highway robber, and In such facts we have the moral of the fable above pointed out the place of secret assassination. Gilded though he may be, this king is a heartless tyrant; for when his subjects have done their appointed work, and gained its reward, he turns their gold into corruption, and their pleasure to poison, conniving at their selfdestruction.
As though his greatness were in danger of being impeached from his descent to the meaner branches of common iniquity, his chief glorying has ever been to gather the laurels of war. By the promise of power he has promoted civil dissension. He has made interest the pretense of anarchy, and caused brother to spill a brother's blood. Under the flag of conquest he has led nation against nation. In his desolating track, cities have been made the bon-fires of victory, and hecatombs of living men have been offered to appease his Moloch vengeance.
narrated. Yet how many in both worlds are still in pursuit of El Dorado! Not only men, but maidens are chasing the phantoms by which this scheming monarch decoys them onward to the anticipated possession of a mimic kingdom, over which they may rule. Fortunately the pursuits of the many, though nearly as fruitless, are not so desperate as those of the early adventures.
Many republicans, however unwittingly, glory in their allegiance to the gilded king. What is worse, Christians sometimes so far mistake their calling as to court his favor. Then they become "most zealous when religion puts on her silver slippers, and they love to walk with her in the street, when the sun shines and the people applaud her." But how careless do they appear of her when in rags or bound in irons! Alas, how often and how soon do they become like the veritable characters of Bunyan, Mr. Hold-the-world, Mr. Moneylove, and Mr. Save-all, of the town of Love-gain, in the county of Coveting. These persons, after various discourse with the faithful pilgrims, Christian and Hopeful, were decoyed by Demas, who loved this present world, across the plain Ease, to the hill Lucre, to examine a silver mine. There they perished either by falling into the pit, having gone too near the brink thereof, or having gone down to dig, being smothered by the damps that commonly arise there. Ah, when shall we learn
This brings us to the point whence we started. For among all the wars described in history, none have been more inhuman than those enacted in the conquest of the New World. Even conquerors before, had shown some disposition to establish a character for magnanimity and personal greatness, although their notions of virtue were grossly perverted. But the desperadoes who now sought for the kingdom, and strove for the spoils of a monarch, whose only existence was in the capacity of their proper master, dead as they were to human feeling, seemed to think that the infamy of their deeds would be overlooked amid the glare of their illgotten treasure. To prepare the way for the plunder they had in view, Cortez and his followers butchered the unoffending Indians by thousands, and laid their towns in ruins. On one occasion sixty caciques, or chiefs of the Mexican empire, and four hundred nobles, were burned alive with the utmost coolness and deliberation; and to complete the horror of the scene, the children and relations of the wretched victims were assembled, and compelled to be spectators of their dyingery thing from God.
"Where our true treasure? Gold says, 'Not in me,'
WE should act with as much energy as those who expect every thing from themselves; and we should pray with as much earnestness as those who expect ev