The Country Of
Peru, Between The Andes And The Western Sea Or Pacific, Is From 15 To 20
Leagues In Breadth, All Of A Hot Sandy Soil, Yet Fertile, As Being Well
Watered, And Produces Many Excellent Trees And Fruits.
It produces many
turnips, rapes, and other such herbs and roots; likewise abundance of
flags, rushes, herbs, and flowers, of so loose and tender a texture, that
the leaves drop off on the slightest touch.
Among these herbs and fresh
flowers, the natives often dwell without beds or houses, even like cattle
in the fields, and some of them have tails. These people are gross,
and wear long hair, but have no beards; and they speak divers languages.
One of the plants of this region called _aipo_, resembles rue, and bears a
yellow flower, which cures all kinds of rotten sores; yet, if applied to
sound flesh, will eat it to the bone.
They say that these mountains abound in tigers, lions, bears, wolves, wild-
cats, foxes, dantes, ounces, hogs, and deer; and with many birds, both
ravenous and others, most of them being black; while under the north, both
birds and beasts are mostly white. There are also great numbers of large
and terrible snakes, which are said to have destroyed a whole army of one
of the Incas, that was marching this way: Yet, according to report, an old
woman did so enchant them, that they became quite harmless and gentle,
insomuch that they would allow people to sit upon them.
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