The Sun, the great parent of mankind, pitying their degraded condition, sent two of his children, Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo Huaco, to govern and teach them. They bore with them as they advanced from the neighbourhood of Lake Titicaca a golden wedge, and were directed to take up their abode at the spot where this sacred emblem should sink easily into the ground.
We passed several Indian huts with grass-thatched roofs, and met a party of Indians travelling down the mountain in single file, each man carrying his bow and arrows. They were going down to Huaco to buy corn, the maize crop having failed around Matagalpa the last season. The mountain road, though dry, was rocky, with steep ascents, and our mules got very tired.
We got under shelter in the cottage before the tempest had reached its height. Pedro was instantly placed in bed, when, after a time, a profuse perspiration came on. Some cooling drink was given to her, and a pumpkin poultice was applied to the wound. The huaco plant grows in the woods.
"When in the dim and remote past our Lord and Father the Sun took compassion upon us his people, he sent two of his children Manco Capac and Mama Oello Huaco to earth in order that they might form us into a united and consolidated nation.
Saying this, he produced from his pocket some cake of the huaco leaves, a piece of which he put into Pedro's mouth, and spreading some more on the wound, pressed it with all his force. A litter was soon formed, on which we placed him and carried him along, for the pain was too great to allow him to walk.
Our road lay a couple of miles to the north of the village of Huaco, where much of the maize of the province is grown; the road then led over many swampy valleys, and our beasts had hard work plunging through the mud. We passed through La Puerta, a scattered collection of Indian huts; then over a river called the Aguasco, running to the east, and probably emptying into the Rio Grande.
Another tradition says that Manco Capac was accompanied by a wife named Mama Oello Huaco, who taught the Indian women the mysteries of spinning and weaving, while her husband taught the arts of civilisation to the men.
It is said that the natives discovered its qualities by observing that a bird called the huaco, which feeds on snakes, whenever it was bitten flew off and ate some of this plant. I have heard that the harmless snakes are great enemies to the poisonous ones, and will attack those much larger than themselves.
"Ah! mercy, Heaven, mercy!" cried poor Pedro. "I have been bitten by that deadly snake, and in a few minutes must die. Farewell, my friends, farewell!" "Courage, Senor, courage!" exclaimed the Indian; "I have some huaco cake with me. Eat, eat, and you may yet live."
The Sun, the great luminary and parent of mankind, taking compassion on their degraded condition, sent two of his children, Manco Capac and Mama Oello Huaco, to gather the natives into communities, and teach them the arts of civilized life.