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Caribs

antilles american spanish

Caribs, Native American tribe encountered by the Spanish conquerors of America in the 16th century. They inhabited the islands of the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean (which was named after them) and parts of the South American mainland, notably the Guianas. The Caribs grew a variety of crops and hunted with clubs, spears, bows, and blowguns. They were strongly independent and formed no political bonds between their own groups. Their raids on other tribes—including the more peaceful Arawaks—whom they dispossessed of their land, were made in large dugout canoes, and their conquests were celebrated by killing and eating the male captives. After Spanish settlement of the Antilles in 1527, most Caribs were exterminated except for some on the island of Aruba.

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