A Conquistador’s Regret 1589

Pained with regret and remorse, the last survivor of the original Spanish conquistadors (invaders) of Peru, wrote his last will remembering the impact of the conquest, on September 18, 1589.  Don Mancio Serra de Leguisamo wrote in his will:  “[W]e found these kingdoms in such good order, and the said Incas governed them in such [wisdom] that throughout them there was not a thief, nor a vicious man, nor an adulteress, nor was a bad woman admitted among them, nor were there immoral people. The men had honest and useful occupations. The lands, forests, mines, pastures, houses and all kinds of products were regulated and distributed in such sort that each one knew his property without any other person seizing it or occupying it, nor were there law suits respecting it … the motive which obliges me to make this statement is the discharge of my conscience, as I find myself guilty. For we have destroyed by our evil example, the people who had such a government as was enjoyed by these natives.”

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