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Why flames the far summit? Why shoot to the blast,
Loch. False Wizard, avaunt! I have marshall'd
my clan :
Their swords are a thousand, their bosoms are one ! They are true to the last of their blood and their
Wiz.-Lochiel, Lochiel, beware of the day!
With the bloodhounds, that bark for thy fugitive king.
my sight: Rise! rise ! ye wild tempests, and cover his flight ! 'Tis finish'd. Their thunders are hush'd on the
Like ocean-weeds heap'd on the surf-beaten shore,
Lochiel, untainted by flight or by chains,
Journey to the Gold Mines & Lavaderos
of La Carolina.
STARTED at day-break from San Luis, to go to the Gold Mines and Lavaderos* of La Carolina, which are in the mountains on the north of the town.
Drove a set of loose horses before us, and, about twelve o'clock, stopped to change.
The horses were driven to the edge of a precipice which was quite perpendicular, and which overhung a torrent, and we formed a semicircle about them while the peons began to catch them with the lasso, which they were much afraid of. The horses were so crowded and scared, that I expected they would all have been over the precipice :
Alluvial soil, which is washed for gold.
at last the hind-legs of one horse went down the cliff, and he hung in a most extraordinary manner by the fore-legs, with his nose resting on the ground, as far from him as possible, to preserve his balance. As soon as we saw him in this situation, we allowed the other horses to escape, and in a moment the peon threw his lasso with the most surprising precision, and it went below the animal's tail like the breeching of harness. We then all hauled upon it, and at last lifted the horse, and succeeded in dragging him up : during the whole time he remained quiet, and to all appearance perfectly conscious that the slightest struggle would have been fatal to him. We then mounted our fresh horses, and although the path over the mountains was so steep and rugged, that we were occasionally obliged to jump a foot or two from one level to another, we scrambled along with the loose horses before us, at the rate of nine or ten miles an hour.
In the evening, we came to a small stream of water, which led us to the wretched hamlet of La Carolina, which is close to the mine.
A man offered us a shed to sleep in, which we accepted, and we then went into several of the huts, and conversed with the poor people, who had heard of rich English associations, and who thought we were come to give them every thing they could desire.
In the evening we got some supper, and slept on the ground in an out-house. We had observed, tied up in the yard, a large savage dog, which was constantly trying to get at us. In the middle of the night, while the moon was shining upon us through some holes in the roof, this dog walked in, and after smelling us all, he went to sleep among us.
The whole of the next day we spent in the mines and the lavederos, and in the evening I walked alone into a little garden, and looked among the soil for gold. I really was able to find a very few particles, and it was singular to collect such a commodity in the gardens of such very poor people.
On my return I called at several of the huts, to receive some gold-dust which I had promised to purchase. It happened that I had nothing but a quantity of four-dollar gold-pieces ; and although they were current all over South America, I found, to my very great astonishment, that no one here would take them. In vain 1 assured them of their value; but these poor people (accustomed to change gold for silver) all shook their fore-fingers in my face, and in different voices exclaimed, “ No vale nada," (Gold is worth nothing), and among such wild, desert mountains, the great moral truth of their assertion rushed very forcibly into my mind.
I offered them the piece of four dollars for what they only asked two and three dollars, but they would not take it; and we had scarcely silver