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Not only have [the native Americans] shown themselves to be very wise peoples and possessed of lively and marked understanding, prudently governing and providing for their nations . . . but they have equaled many diverse nations of the world, past and present, that have been praised for their governance, politics and customs; and exceed by no small measure the wisest of all these, such as the Greeks and Romans, in adherence to the rules of natural reason (Bartolomé de Las Casas, Apologetic History of the Indies).

New World Writings


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