Image #1: Spanish Face .
Image #2: Caravel
Image #3: Tribute Scene
Image #4: Creation of Man
Image #5: Spanish Cross
The first and second images are clear evidence of early Taíno encounter with the Spanish. “Image 1: Spanish Face” is a drawing of a Spanish man wearing an armet, a helmet from a European suit of armor used in countries like Spain, Italy, France and England. “Image 2: Caravel” is regarded as the first known painting of a European ship in the Americas. The side-by-side comparison shows the Taíno cave art as a representation of a caravel, a Spanish ship used during the 15th-17th century. These drawings made by the Taíno people show a deliberate and accurate account of their encounters with the Spanish. The Spanish colonization of Hispaniola brought an increase of European ships, like the caravel, in and out of the region. Smaller merchant ships, such as the Nuestra Señora de Begoña, encountered violent storms and often sank, leaving treasures along the ocean floor.
“Image 3: Tribute Scene” is a side by side of the cave's tribute drawing and an interpretive illustration of the painting. This image was created as a memorial of the initial contact between the Taíno and Spanish. The scene shows a Taíno food-sharing tradition which depicts the making of bread for a Spanish army stationed along the coast (represented by a caravel). Reading from left to right, the tribute depicts a rectangular grater that is used on the guáyiga and yucca root imaged by an s-shaped object. The grated dough is shown to form the bread. The grid barbeque, just to the right of the root, cooked the casaba bread, represented as a circular and divided structure at the top of the image. A Taíno leader or spirit is represented between the barbeque and a tall guáyiga plant. This further demonstrates ongoing interaction between groups.
Images 4 and 5 illustrate the Taíno belief system and the impact of Christianity on their civilization. “Image 4: Creation of Man” is believed to be a cave drawing used in the telling of the Taíno creation story. The creation story says that the Taíno people emerged from caves in a sacred mountain on present-day Hispaniola. “Image 5: Spanish Cross” is one of many crosses that appear throughout the cave. This symbol represents not only the arrival of Christianity to the Dominican Republic but also the swift erasure of the Taíno belief system.