n one the early seventeenth- century Jesuit annual letters, a
woman recounts a telling vision to her confessor. Twenty
years earlier she had been seriously ill and sought the services of a sha-
man (jeque) who asked her to make an offering of a parrot and a mon-
key to a temple that the local encomendero had destroyed:
Already at the end, a woman whom he visited and knew sent for
a jeque, a priest of idolatry. The evil old man entered the house of
the sick woman, bringing what he needed for his task. He chewed
coca, drank tobacco, and began in a low voice to intone certain
chants that are like consevios [?]. He called the demons by name,
spoke with them, and when he finished all of his ceremonies in
the presence of the sick woman he then informed her, telling her,
“You should know that the ancestors of this native woman made
in a certain place a temple of idolatry that was destroyed by the
cursed encomendero of that town and for this great sin the gods
punished the innocent native woman. But there is an easy remedy
if she obeys what the idol demands, which is that the sick woman
buys a parrot and a monkey and raises them during two years and
at the end takes them to the jeque to offer in that temple. And if she
promises this, she will not only get well but will be very rich and of
good fortune.” (agcg/r 1611–12, 67v–68r)1
When the woman refused to comply with the jeque’s demands, he be-
came furious. Suddenly, she fell into a deathlike state and was placed
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