Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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CARVAJAL, Gaspar de, missionary, born in Extramadura, Spain, early in the 16th century; died in Lima, Peru, in 1584. He entered the Dominican order in Spain, went to Peru in 1588, and devoted himself to the conversion of the natives. In 1538 he accompanied the expedition of Gonzalo Pizarro to the countries east of Quito as chaplain. The army, deceived by Indians, was drawn into a country destitute of provisions, and reduced to great suffering. Gonzalo Pizarro ordered Francis Igrellana, one of his best officers, to descend the Napo with Father Carvajal and fifty men, to find the place where that River enters a larger one, and to return with whatever provisions they could get on board their little vessel. Orellana reached the junction of the Napo and the Marafion, but found no provisions. He then resolved to abandon himself to the course of the river, and, as Father Carvajal protested against his treachery, he put him ashore and sailed away. Here the missionary was reduced to the last extremity, when Gonzalo, impatient at the delay of Orellana, set out in search of his vessel and discovered him. The expedition then returned to Quito, having suffered a loss of 320 out of 400 men. Father Carvajal was elected sub-prior of the convent of San Rosario in Lima, and while in this place he was chosen to arbitrate between the viceroy, Blasco de Nunez, and the auditors of the royal audience in 1554, but was unsuccessful. After the pacification of the country, he was sent by his superiors to the mission of Tucuman, and appointed protector of the Indians in this country. He labored for years in this ira-meuse territory and converted most of the natives to Christianity. In 1553 he was instituted preach-or-general of the convent of Huamanga, and vicar-national of the province of Tucuman. He introduced several bodies of Dominicans into his province, and by their aid founded Indian towns and nine Spanish colonies. He was elected provincial of Peru in 1557, and devoted the next two years to the organization of his province, and the two following to the visitation of remote districts and the founding of new convents. In 1565 he was selected to represent his province at Rome and at the court of Spain, but it is probable he did not make the journey, as he held a chapter at Lima in 1569.
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