The warlocks of Chiloe – known as La Recta Provincia – are another important part of the archipelago’s culture. These guys were sinister and powerful, with their headquarters in a vast cave lit by torches burning human fat and guarded by a hideously deformed human called the Invunche. Even the initiation into La Recta Provincia was gruesome – wannabe warlocks were allegedly required to kill a loved one and use their skin to fashion a bag for their spellbook. In reality, it appears as if the warlocks were a kind of mafia, who used threats of black magic to get what they wanted. They demanded tribute from villagers to ensure they would “have no accidents during the night”. If anyone refused, they could expect their crops to be destroyed or they could even be poisoned. The warlocks were not to be messed with.
Mythology and folklore is also very much in evidence on the other side of the island. Midway down the eastern coast is Muelle de las Almas or Dock of Souls. This is an installation by a Chilean artist inspired by the belief that the souls of people who died onshore sail away to the afterlife, ferried by a local version of Charon the boatman known as Tempilcahue. However, sometimes Tempilcahue would refuse to take someone, so that person’s soul was doomed to remain in permanent unrest on this stretch of coastline. These souls were known as Animas de Cucao (Cucao being the name of the closest town) and if you hear their cries, you should never reply lest you join them, trapped for eternity.
“The Righteous Province” Cult
Brujo De Chiloé – The Wild Warlocks Of The Chiloé Archipelago