Barrie St. Clair McBride introduces Charles-Marie de la Condamine, a soldier-scholar, and one of the first European travellers to investigate South America in a genuinely scientific spirit.
John Lomax recounts how, for nearly two centuries, a priestly protectorate ruled over the native tribes of Central South America. In an age of slavery and merciless exploitation, the Jesuit fathers established a government based on justice, peace and harmony. Their subjects began the working day, and marched homewards again, to the sound of music, preceded by the Mayor and his officers wearing gold-trimmed uniforms and plumed hats.
George Woodcock describes how the destruction of the Inca economy brought untold suffering to their former subjects; and there were many Indian revolts, brutally crushed by the Spaniard, during the course of the next two centuries.
In the 1860s the Republic of Paraguay, under its dictator, Francisco Solano López, and his Irish consort, Eliza Lynch, became engaged in a desperate seven-years war with its neighbours. The memoirs of a small group of British doctors and engineers provide the basis for this account of the struggle.
C.R. Boxer recalls “the time of the Flemings” (Tempo dos Flamengos), as the period of the Dutch occupation of Pernambuco province in Brazil used to be called.