Carmen Ariza
801 Pages
English
Downloading requires you to have access to the YouScribe library
Learn all about the services we offer

Carmen Ariza

-

Downloading requires you to have access to the YouScribe library
Learn all about the services we offer
801 Pages
English

Description

The Project Gutenberg EBook of Carmen Ariza, by Charles Francis Stocking This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org Title: Carmen Ariza Author: Charles Francis Stocking Release Date: October 24, 2009 [EBook #30312] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1 *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK CARMEN ARIZA *** Produced by Roger Frank and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net In the name of the Church he would serve these humble people. ––Book 2, Page 77. CARMEN ARIZA BY CHARLES FRANCIS STOCKING, E. M. Author of THE DIARY OF JEAN EVARTS, THE MAYOR OF FILBERT, Etc. CHICAGO THE MAESTRO CO. 1921 COPYRIGHT 1915 BY CHARLES FRANCIS STOCKING ISSUED JANUARY 1916 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED TWENTY-FIFTH EDITION PRINTED IN U. S. A. CARMEN ARIZA BOOK 1 Doth this offend you?––the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. ––Jesus. 3CARMEN ARIZA CHAPTER 1 The tropical sun mounted the rim of the golden Caribbean, quivered for a moment like a fledgeling preening its wings for flight, then launched forth boldly into the vault of heaven, shattering the lowering vapors of night into a myriad fleecy clouds of every form and color, and driving them before it into the abysmal blue above.

Subjects

Informations

Published by
Published 08 December 2010
Reads 62
Language English
Document size 1 MB

Exrait

The Project Gutenberg EBook of Carmen Ariza, by Charles Francis Stocking
This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org
Title: Carmen Ariza
Author: Charles Francis Stocking
Release Date: October 24, 2009 [EBook #30312]
Language: English
Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1
*** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK CARMEN ARIZA ***
Produced by Roger Frank and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net
In the name of the Church he would serve these humble people.––Book 2, Page 77.
CARMEN ARIZA
BY
CHARLES FRANCIS STOCKING, E. M.
Author of THE DIARY OF JEAN EVARTS,
THE MAYOR OF FILBERT, Etc.
CHICAGO
THE MAESTRO CO.
1921
COPYRIGHT 1915
BY
CHARLES FRANCIS STOCKING
ISSUED JANUARY 1916
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
TWENTY-FIFTH EDITION
PRINTED IN U. S. A.
CARMEN ARIZA
BOOK 1
Doth this offend you?––the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and
they are life.
––Jesus.3CARMEN ARIZA
CHAPTER 1
The tropical sun mounted the rim of the golden Caribbean, quivered for a
moment like a fledgeling preening its wings for flight, then launched forth
boldly into the vault of heaven, shattering the lowering vapors of night into a
myriad fleecy clouds of every form and color, and driving them before it into the
abysmal blue above. Leaping the sullen walls of old Cartagena, the morning
beams began to glow in roseate hues on the red-tiled roofs of this ancient
metropolis of New Granada, and glance in shafts of fire from her glittering
domes and towers. Swiftly they climbed the moss-grown sides of church and
convent, and glided over the dull white walls of prison and monastery alike.
Pouring through half-turned shutters, they plashed upon floors in floods of
gold. Tapping noiselessly on closed portals, they seemed to bid tardy sleepers
arise, lest the hurrying midday siesta overtake them with tasks unfinished. The
dormitory of the ecclesiastical college, just within the east wall of the city,
glowed brilliantly in the clear light which it was reflecting to the mirror of waters
without. Its huge bulk had caught the first rays of the rising sun, most of which
had rebounded from its drab, incrusted walls and sped out again over the
dancing sea. A few, however, escaped reflection by stealing through the
slanting shutters of a window close under the roof of the building. Within, they
fell upon a man kneeling on the tiled floor beside a rude cot bed.
In appearance the man was not more than twenty-five years of age. His black,
close-curling hair, oval face, and skin of deep olive tint indicated a Latin origin.
His clerical garb proclaimed him a son of the Church. The room was a small,
whitewashed cell of stone, musty with the dampness which had swept in from
the sea during the night. It was furnished with Spartan simplicity. Neither
image, crucifix, nor painting adorned its walls––the occupant’s dress alone
4suggested his calling. A hanging shelf held a few books, all evidently used as
texts in the adjoining college. A table, much littered; a wooden dressing stand,
with a small mirror; and an old-fashioned, haircloth trunk, bearing numerous
foreign labels, eked out the paucity of furnishings.
If the man prayed, there was only his reverent attitude to indicate it, for no
words escaped his lips. But the frequent straining of his tense body, and the
fierce clenching of his thin hands, as he threw his arms out over the unopened
bed, were abundant evidence of a soul tugging violently at its moorings. His
was the attitude of one who has ceased to inveigh against fate, who kneels
dumbly before the cup of Destiny, knowing that it must be drained.
With the break of day the bells awoke in the church towers throughout the old
city, and began to peal forth their noisy reminder of the virility of the Holy
Catholic faith. Then the man raised his head, seemingly startled into
awareness of his material environment. For a few moments he listened
confusedly to the insistent clatter––but he made no sign of the cross, nor did
his head bend with the weight of a hollow Ave on his bloodless lips while the
clamoring muezzins filled the warm, tropical air with their jangling appeal.
Rising with an air of weary indifference, he slowly crossed the room and threwwide the shutters of the solitary window, admitting a torrent of sunlight. As he
did this, the door of the cell softly opened, and a young novitiate entered.
“With your permission, Padre,” said the boy, bowing low. “His Grace summons
you to the Cathedral.”
The man made a languid gesture of dismissal, and turned from the lad to the
rare view which greeted him through the open window. The dusty road below
was beginning to manifest the city’s awakening. Barefooted, brown-skinned
women, scantily clad in cheap calico gowns, were swinging along with
shallow baskets under their arms to the plaza for the day’s marketing. Some
carried naked babes astride their hips; some smoked long, slender cigars of
their own rolling. Half-clad children of all ages, mixtures of mestizo, Spaniard,
and Jamaican negro, trotted along beside them; and at intervals a blustering
cochero rattled around the corner in a rickety, obsolete type of trap behind a
brace of emaciated horses.
The lively gossip of the passing groups preluded the noisy chaffering to follow
their arrival at the market place.
“Caramba, little pig!” shrilled a buxom matron, snatching her naked offspring
away from a passing vehicle. “Think you I have money to waste on Masses for
your naughty soul?”
“Na, señora,” bantered another, “it will cost less now than later to get him out of
purgatory.”
5“But, comadre, do you stop at the Cathedral to say a Pater-noster ?”
“To be sure, amiga, and an Ave, too. And let us return by way of the Hotel
España, for, quien sabe? we may catch a glimpse of the famous matador.”
“Señor Varilla?”
“Yes. He arrived from Barranquilla last night––so my Pedro tells me––and will
fight in the arena this Sunday. I have saved fifty pesos to see him. Madre de
Dios! but I would sell my soul to see him slay but a single bull. And do you
go?”
“God willing!”
The soft air, tempered by the languid ocean breeze, bore aloft the laughter and
friendly bantering of the marketers, mingled with the awakening street sounds
and the morning greetings which issued from opening doors and windows.
The scent of roses and the heavier sweetness of orchids and tropical blooms
drifted over the ancient city from its innumerable patios and public gardens.
The age-incrusted buildings fused in the mounting sun into squares of
dazzling white, over which the tiled roofs flowed in cinctures of crimson. Far off
at sea the smoke of an approaching vessel wove fantastic designs against the
tinted sky. Behind the city the convent of Santa Candelaria, crowning the hill of
La Popa, glowed like a diamond; and stretching far to the south, and merging
at the foot of the Cordilleras into the gloom-shrouded, menacing jungle, the
steaming llanos offered fleeting glimpses of their rich emerald color as the
morning breeze stirred the heavy clouds of vapor which hung sullenly above
them.
To all this the man, looking vacantly out across the city walls to where the sea
birds dipped on the rippling waves, was apparently oblivious. Nor did hemanifest the slightest interest in the animated scene before him until a tall,
heavy-set young priest emerged from the entrance of the dormitory below and
stopped for a moment in the middle of the road to bask in the brilliant sunlight
and fill his lungs with the invigorating ocean breeze. Turning his eyes
suddenly upward, the latter caught sight of the man at the window.
“Ah, amigo Josè!” he called in friendly greeting, his handsome face aglow with
a cordial smile. “Our good Saint Claver has not lobbied for us in vain! We shall
yet have a good day for the bulls, no?”
“An excellent one, I think, Wenceslas,” quickly replied the man addressed,
who then turned abruptly away as if he wished to avoid further conversation.
The priest below regarded the empty window for a moment. Then, with a short,
dry laugh and a cynical shrug of his broad shoulders, he passed on.
6As the man above turned back into the room his face, wearing the look of one
far gone in despair, was contorted with passion. Fear, confusion, and
undefined soul-longing seemed to move rapidly across it, each leaving its
momentary impression, and all mingling at times in a surging flood that
swelled the veins of his temples to the point of rupture. Mechanically he paced
his narrow cell, throwing frequent furtive glances at the closed door, as if he
suspected himself watched. Often he stopped abruptly, and with head bowed
and brows furrowed, seemed to surrender his soul to the forces with which it
was wrestling. Often he clasped his head wildly in his hands and turned his
beseeching eyes upward, as if he would call upon an invisible power above to
aid him, yet restrained by the deadening conviction of experience that such
appeal would meet with no response, and that he must stand in his own
strength, however feeble.
Hours passed thus. The sun gained the zenith and the streets were ablaze.
Belated marketers, with laden baskets atop their heads, were hurrying
homeward, hugging the scanty shade of the glaring buildings. Shopkeepers
were drawing their shutters and closing their heavy doors, leaving the hot
noon hour asleep on the scorching portals. The midday Angelus called from
the Cathedral tower. Then, as if shaken into remembrance of the message
which the boy had brought him at daybreak, the man hurriedly took his black
felt hat from the table, and without further preparation left the room.
The stone pavements and narrow brick walks, above which the intense heat
hung in tremulous waves, were almost deserted as he hastened toward the
Cathedral. The business of the morning was finished; trade was suspended
until the sun, now dropping its fiery shafts straight as plummets, should have
sunk behind La Popa. As he turned into the Calle Lozano an elderly woman,
descending the winding brick stairway visible through the open door of one of
the numerous old colonial houses in the lower end of this thoroughfare, called
timidly to him.
“Marcelena,” the priest returned, stopping. “The girl––is she––?”
“She is dying,” interrupted the woman in a voice broken with sobs.
“Dying! Then the child––?”
“Yes, Padre, born an hour ago––a boy. It lives. Ah, Santa Virgen, such
suffering! Pray for us, Mother of God!” murmured the weeping woman, bending
her head and repeatedly making the sign of the cross.“Who is with her now?” the priest continued hurriedly.
7“Only Catalina. The doctor said he would return. He is good to the blessed
child. And Padre Lorenzo came––but he would not shrive her little white
soul––”
“And the father––?”
“He does not know,” the woman sobbed. “Who would dare to tell him! Think
you he would come? That he would own the babe? He would not give one
blessed candle to set beside the little mother’s poor sweet body! Ah, Santa
Maria! who will buy Masses for her little soul? Who––?”
“But he shall know!” cried the priest, his face livid. “And he shall acknowledge
his child and care for it! Dios––! But wait, Marcelena. I can do nothing now.
But I will return.” Leaving the woman sobbing prayers to the Virgin Mother, the
priest hurried on.
Within the Cathedral the cool atmosphere met him with a sweet calm, which
flowed over his perturbed soul like a benediction. He drew a chair from a pile
in a corner and sat down for a moment near one of the little side chapels, to
recover from the stifling heat without and prepare his thought for the impending
interview with the Bishop. A dim twilight enveloped the interior of the building,
affording a grateful relief from the blinding glare of the streets. It brought him a
transient sense of peace––the peace which his wearied soul had never fully
known. Peace brooded over the great nave, and hovered in the soft air that
drifted slowly through the deserted aisle up to the High Altar, where lay the
Sacred Host. A few votive candles were struggling to send their feeble glow
through the darkness. The great images of the suffering Christ, of the Saints
and the Virgin Mother had merged their outlines into the heavy shadows which
lay upon them.
The haunting memory of years of soul-struggle with doubt and fear, of
passionate longing for the light of truth in the gloom of superstition and
manmade creeds, for guidance among the devious paths of human conjecture
which lead nowhither––or to madness––seemed to fade into the darkness
which wrapped him in that holy calm. After all, what had he won in his lifelong
warfare with human beliefs? What had he gained by his mad opposition to
Holy Church? There she stood, calm, majestic, undisturbed. Had not the
Christ himself declared that the gates of hell should not prevail against her?
Was not the unfoldment of truth a matter, not of years, but of ages? And were
the minds of men to-day prepared for higher verities than those she offered?
Did not the Church plant the seed as rapidly as the barren soil of the human
mind was tilled and made fallow? True, her sons, whom he had so obstinately
8opposed, were blindly zealous. But were they wholly without wisdom? Had
not his own zeal been as unreasoningly directed to the forcing of events? And
still, through it all, she had held her indulgent arms extended to him, as to all
erring mankind. Why not now, like a tired child, weary of futile resistance, yield
to her motherly embrace and be at last at peace? Again the temptation which
he had stubbornly resisted for a lifetime urged upon him with all its mesmeric
insistence.
He looked up, and his glance fell upon a small, glass-covered case, dimly
visible in the uncertain light at one side of the little altar. The case was filled
with tiny images of gold––milagros. Each had received priestly blessing, andeach was believed to have worked a miraculous cure. The relaxed lines of the
priest’s care-worn face instantly drew into an expression of hard austerity. Like
the ebb of the ocean, his recalcitrant thought surged back again in a towering
flood.
“What a spectacle!” he murmured. “Holy Church, assuming spiritual leadership
of the world, sunken in idolatry, and publicly parading her fetishism in these
lingering echoes of primitive demon-worship!”
Ah, the Master taught the omnipotence of God, whose ways he declared as
high above the blind grovelings of man as the dome of heaven swings above
earth. But how long, gentle Master, shall such as this be declared thy Father’s
ways? How long shall superstition and idolatry retain the power to fetter the
souls of men? Is there no end to the black curse of ignorance of Truth, which,
after untold centuries, still makes men sink with vain toil and consume with
disease? And––are those who sit about Peter’s gorgeous tomb and approve
these things unerring guides to a right knowledge of God, to know whom, the
Christ has said, is life eternal?
A step behind him broke the flow of his dark revery.
“Our good Josè dreams below, while His Grace bites his nails above,” said a
soft, mellifluous voice. “Qué chiste! It is––”
The priest sprang to his feet and faced the speaker. For a moment the men
regarded each other, the one uncertain as to the impending event, but
supremely confident of his ability to meet it; the other sick in soul and torn with
mental struggle, but for the moment fired anew with the righteous wrath which
his recent brief interview with the woman, Marcelena, had kindled.
“Wenceslas––” The priest spoke in a strained, uncertain tone, striving to hold
his emotions in leash. “I have learned to-day––The girl, Maria––”
“Caro amigo,” interrupted Wenceslas smoothly, “what you have learned
today, or any other day, of the girl, Maria, is a lie.”
9“Hombre!” The priest turned livid. Stepping closer to Wenceslas––
“Do you think, inhuman! that I have not long known of your relations with this
girl? Who has not! And, further, I know––and Cartagena shall know––that
today she lies dying beside your child!”
Wenceslas recoiled. His face flushed, and the veins of his forehead swelled
with a purple flood. Then a pallor spread over his features, and beads of
perspiration started from his pores.
It was but momentary. Recovering himself, he laid a large hand on the priest’s
shoulder, and, his face assuming its wonted smile, said in his usual low tone,
“Amigo, it seems that you have a penchant for spreading gossip. Think you I
am ignorant of the fact that because of it Rome spewed you out for a
meddlesome pest? Do you deceive yourself that Cartagena will open her ears
to your garbled reports? The hag, Marcelena, lies! She has long hoped to gain
some advantage from me, I have told you–– But go now above and learn from
His Grace, whom you have had the impudence to keep waiting all morning,
how tongues that wag too freely can be silenced.” He checked himself
suddenly, as if he feared he had said too much. Then, turning on his heel, he
quickly left the Cathedral.The priest’s head sank upon his breast, and he stood, infirm of purpose and
choking with words which he could not voice. The whirl in which his confused
brain had revolved for months––nay, years––had made the determination of
conduct with him a matter of hours, of days, of weeks. Spontaneity of action
had long since ceased within his fettered mind, where doubt had laid its
detaining hand upon his judgment. Uncertainty of his steps, fear of their
consequence, and dread lest he precipitate the calamity which he felt hung
always just above him, had sapped the courage and strength of will which his
soul needed for a determined stand, and left him incapable of decisive action,
even in the face of grossest evil. The mordant reply of Wenceslas only
strengthened his conviction of the futility of massing his own feeble forces
against those of one so thoroughly entrenched as this man, who had the ear of
the Bishop––nay, whose resourceful mind was now said to be actually
directing the policies of the feeble old ecclesiastic who held the bishopric of
Cartagena.
As if groping through the blackness of midnight, he moved slowly down the
deserted nave of the Cathedral and mounted the winding stairs to the
ambulatory above. Pausing at the door of the sanctum for a moment to gather
up his remnant of moral strength, he entered and stood hesitant before the
waiting Bishop.
10
CHAPTER 2
The long War of Independence which destroyed the last vestige of Spanish
control over the Peruvian colonies of South America was virtually brought to a
close by the terrific battle of Ayacucho, fought on the plains between Pizarro’s
city of Lima and the ancient Inca seat of Cuzco in the fall of 1824. The result of
this battle had been eagerly awaited in the city of Cartagena, capital of the
newly formed federation of Colombia. It was known there that the Royalist
army was concentrating for a final stand. It was known, too, that its veterans
greatly outnumbered the nondescript band of patriots, many of whom were
provided only with the arma blanca, the indispensable machete of tropical
America. This fact lent a shred of encouragement to the few proud Tory
families still remaining in the city and clinging forlornly to their broken fortunes,
while vainly hoping for a reëstablishment of the imperial regimen, as they
pinned their fate to this last desperate conflict. Among these, none had been
prouder, none more loyal to the Spanish Sovereign, and none more liberal in
dispensing its great wealth to bolster up a hopeless cause than the ancient
and aristocratic family at whose head stood Don Ignacio Josè Marquez de
Rincón, distinguished member of the Cabildo, and most loyal subject of his
imperial majesty, King Ferdinand VII. of Spain.
The house of Rincón traced its lineage back to the ferocious adventurer, Juan
de Rincón, favorite lieutenant of the renowned Conquistador, Pedro de
Heredia. When the latter, in the year 1533, obtained from Charles V. theconcession of New Andalusia, the whole territory comprised between the
mouths of the Magdalena and Atrato rivers in what is now the Republic of
Colombia, and undertook the conquest of this enormously rich district, the
fireeating Juan, whom the chroniclers of that romantic period quaintly described
as “causing the same effects as lightning and quicksilver,” was his most
dependable support. Together they landed at the Indian village of Calamari,
and, after putting the pacific inhabitants to the sword––a manner of disposal
most satisfactory to the practical Juan––laid the foundations of the present city
of Cartagena, later destined to become the “Queen of the Indies,” the pride, as
it was the despair, of the haughty monarchs of Spain.
For his eminent services in this exploit Juan received a large tract of land in
the most fertile part of the Magdalena valley––which he immediately staked
11and lost at the gaming-table. As a measure of consolation, and doubtless with
the view of checking Juan’s gambling propensities, Pedro de Heredia then
bestowed upon him a strip of bleak and unexplored mountain country adjacent
to the river Atrato. Stung by his sense of loss, as well as by the taunts of his
boisterous companions, and harassed by the practical conclusion that life’s
brevity would not permit of wiping out their innumerable insults singly by the
sword, the raging Juan gathered together a few blood-drinking companions of
that ilk and set out to find diversion of mind on his possessions.
Years passed. One day Juan again appeared on the streets of Cartagena, and
this time with gold enough to buy the city. The discovery of rich auriferous
sands on his estates adjoining the Atrato, which were worked extensively for
him by the natives whom he and his companions had forced into subjection,
had yielded him enormous wealth. He settled in Cartagena, determined to
make it his future home, and at once set about buying great blocks of houses
and erecting a palace for himself. He began to acquire lands and mines in all
directions. He erected a sumptuous summer residence in what is now the
suburb of Turbaco. He built an arena, and bred bulls for it from famous stock
which he imported from the mother-country. He gave fêtes and public
entertainments on the most lavish scale imaginable. In short, he quickly
became Cartagena’s most influential and distinguished citizen, as he was
easily her richest.
But far more important to mention than all these dry details was the undoubted
change of character which had come over the man himself. Perhaps it was the
awful heat of the steaming Atrato valley that drew the fire from his livid soul.
Perhaps it was a dawning appreciation of the opportunities made possible by
his rapid acquisition of wealth that had softened his character. Some said he
had seen a vision of the Virgin Mary. Others laid it to a terrible fever, in which
for days he had lain delirious in the shadow of death. Be that as it may, the
bloodthirsty Conquistador, who a few years before angrily shook the dust of
Cartagena from his feet, had now returned a changed man.
At once Juan began to manifest in an ever increasing degree an interest in
matters religious. In this respect his former character suffered a complete
reversal. He assiduously cultivated the clergy, and gave large sums for the
support of the Cathedral and the religious orders of the city. The Bishop
became a frequent guest at his sumptuous table; and as often he in turn
sought the Bishop for consultation anent his benefactions and, in particular, for
12consolation when haunted by sad memories of his devilish exploits in earlylife. When the great-hearted Padre Bartolomé de las Casas, infirm but still
indefatigable in his work for the protection and uplift of the Indians, arrived one
memorable day in his little canoe which his devoted native servants had
paddled through the dique from the great river beyond, Juan was the first to
greet him and insist that he make his home with him while in the city. And on
the night of the Padre’s arrival it is said that Juan, with tears streaming down
his scarred and wrinkled face, begged to be allowed to confess to him the
awful atrocities which he had committed upon the innocent and harmless
aborigines when, as was his wont, his breath hot with the lust of blood, he had
fallen upon them without provocation and hewed them limb from limb.
In his old age the now gentle Juan, his former self almost obliterated,
expressed a desire to renounce the world, bestow his great wealth upon the
Church, and enter a monastery to pass his remaining years. Despite the
protestations of his numerous family, for whom his religious zeal would permit
him to leave but scanty provision, he was already formulating plans toward
this end when death overtook him, and his vast estates descended intact to
the family which he had founded.
So complete had been the transformation of Juan de Rincón during the many
years that he lived after his return to Cartagena that the characteristics which
he transmitted to his posterity were, in general, quite the reverse of those
which he himself had manifested so abundantly in early life. Whereas, he had
formerly been atrociously cruel, boastingly impious, and a scoffer at matters
religious, his later descendants were generally tender of heart, soft of manner,
and of great piety. Whereas, in early manhood he had been fiery and
impulsive, quick of decision and immovable of opinion, his progeny were
increasingly inclined to be deliberate in judgment and vacillating of purpose.
So many of his descendants entered the priesthood that the family was
threatened with extinction, for in the course of time it had become a sacred
custom in the Rincón family to consecrate the first-born son to the Church.
This custom at length became fixed, and was rigidly observed, even to the
point of bigotry, despite the obliteration of those branches where there was but
a single son.
The family, so auspiciously launched, waxed increasingly rich and influential;
and when the smoldering fires of revolution burst into flame among the
oppressed South American colonies, late in the year 1812, the house of
Rincón, under royal and papal patronage, was found occupying the first
13position of eminence and prestige in the proud old city of Cartagena. Its wealth
had become proverbial. Its sons, educated by preceptors brought from Paris
and Madrid, were prominent at home and abroad. Its honor was
unimpeachable. Its fair name was one of the most resplendent jewels in the
Spanish crown. And Don Ignacio epitomized loyalty to Sovereign and Pope.
With the inauguration of hostilities no fears were felt by the Rincón family for
the ultimate success of the royalist arms, and Don Ignacio immediately
despatched word to his Sovereign in Madrid that the wealth and services of
his house were at the royal disposal. Of this offer Ferdinand quickly availed
himself. The Rincón funds were drawn upon immediately and without stint to
furnish men and muniments for the long and disastrous struggle. Of the family
resources there was no lack while its members held their vast possessions of
lands and mines. But when, after the first successes of the patriots, reprisals