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Describe the Reaction the Native Americans Had Towards the European Settlers. Pros and Cons

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Europeans and Native Americans

The Native Americans had a good reaction to the settlers, but the Europeans appeared to have a good reaction but only wanted to use the Native's. They were in search of gold and were hoping to find it with the help of the Native American's.

In Christopher Columbus's diary he describes the Natives as a handsome race and similar to the Canaries. He noticed how they were similar because they were in the same latitude. This is when he first used the Natives to his advantage. They were willing to trade anything for what the Europeans had on their ship. He was very attentive to the Natives and noticed that they had small bits of gold as jewelry. So he was very interested in where they came to acquire this gold. By using signs they found out that if they went south that they was supposed to be a king who had lots of vessels but, the Natives were not sure of the route so they did not find the king.

Christopher thought the Natives were simple and that they did not need to fortify themselves against them. He was wrong because the Natives were skilled warriors and also knew the land they were fighting on. He would find this out later the hard way when they would begin to have battles with the Natives. He also took captive seven Natives and sent them back to Spain to learn their language and then bring them back. This would be so that the Natives would be able to communicate with the Europeans. Those Natives were also to be used however the King pleased and all of them died before returning. He also wanted to take them over and govern them. He wanted to force them into Christianity. When they would try and convert them they had brutal methods of forcing them to do what they want. Many Natives would convert but would still practice some of their old religious practices.

The Natives were also very generous to the Europeans they gave them gifts that they accepted greedily. They were very pleased to receive their gifts which must have been gold as to how they acted when they received it. In "Meeting of Cortez and Montezuma" it depicts the Spaniard leader, Cortez meeting the Mexica emperor Montezuma. It appears that Cortez is approaching the emperor which denies by holding up his left hand. The holding up of the left hand was a way of respectfully denying someone. The painting is not entirely accurate either. It shows the Natives wearing feather skirts which are not known to have been worn by the natives in that area.

So the Natives had good reactions to the appearance of the Europeans although the Europeans treated them wrongly and had brutal ways of convincing them. The Europeans did find gold but it was not as they hoped.

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