RECORD: Caldcleugh, A. 1825. Travels in South America, during the years 1819 - 20 - 21: containing an account of the present state of Brazil, Buenos Ayres, and Chile. 2 vols. London: John Murray.
REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed (single key) by AEL Data. RN1
NOTE: This work formed part of the Beagle library. The Beagle Library project has been generously supported by a Singapore Ministry of Education Academic Research Fund Tier 1 grant and Charles Darwin University and the Charles Darwin University Foundation, Northern Territory, Australia.
PRINTED BY C. BOWORTH, BELL YARD,
AN ACCOUNT OF THE PRESENT STATE
BRAZIL, BUENOS AYRES, AND CHILE.
BY ALEXANDER CALDCLEUGH, ESQ.
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET.
The Provisional Constitution of Chile.—The Director and Senate.—Provincial Intendents.—Faults of this Constitution, destroyed by the Army of Conception.—Provincial Assemblies.—Decree for the Formation of a General and Constituent Congress.—Religious Institutions.—Revenue.—Administration of Justice.—Internal and External Security.—Alliances.—Sketch of the Revolution Page 1
Departure from St. Jago.—Valparaiso.—Earthquakes, Volcanoes.—Sail for Callao.—Arrival in Lima, the Viceroy, Description of the City, the Inhabitants, Dress of the Ladies, Tapadas, Mode of Life, Population, Negros.—Indians.—Mines.—Climate, Diseases.—Vegetables and Fruits.—Departure from Lima for Callao.—Embark and proceed to the Northward.—Sail for Valparaiso from Huacho.—Outline of the late Political Occurrences in Peru.—Return to St. Jago de Chile. 43
Departure from St. Jago for Buenos Ayres.—Arrival in the Valley of Santa Rosa.—Make preparations there for crossing the Cordillera on foot by the Pass of Uspallata.—The Pass.—Meet with half-starved Travellers and Mules.—Arrive at the Summit.—Paramillo.—Arrival at Mendoza.—Politics of the Pampas, their disturbed state.—Departure from Mendoza.—Arrival at La Punta de San Luiz. 99
Departure from La Punta de san Luiz.—Head-Quarters of the Force of La Punta.—Proceed towards Cordova.—Stay at Luyaba.—Cross the Sierra de Cordova.—Arrive at Cordova.—The former College of the Jesuits.—El Pizon.—Departure.—Traverse the Guayacaru Territories by night.—Head-Quarters of Lopez, the Governor of Santa Fé.—Ramarez.—Proceed towards Buenos Ayres.—Reach the Paraná.—Señora Carrera.—Arrival in Buenos Ayres.—Sail on board a Brig bound to Rio de Janeiro 128
Preparation for a Journey to the Gold Mines.—Departure from Rio de Janeiro.—Arrival at Porto da Estrella.—Mandioca.—Serra da Estrella.—Padre Correa.—Pampulha.—Rio Paraiba.—Paraibuna.—Gold Washing.—Register of Mathias Barbosa.—Serra da Mantequeira.—Emerge from the thick Forests, and arrive on the elevated Plains devoid of Timber.—Barbacena.—Queluz. 179
Queluz.—Congonhas do Campo.—Visit to the Gold Mine of Col. Romualdo.—Proceed to Capāo d' Olanda and examine the Topaze Mine.—Arrival at Villa Rica.—Excursion to Mariana and Itacolumi of Mariana.—Visit to Mange Leguas
and the Gold Mine of Cuyaba.—Visit to the Capitāo Môr at Bandeira.—Return to Villa Rica.—Farther Description of Villa Rica.—Excursion to the Gold Mine of Passagem.—Climate and Diseases.—Geology.—Journey to Timbopeba and Antonio Perreira.—Return to Villa Rica. 223
Excursion to the Gold Mines of the Rio das Velhas.—Feiteceria.—Gold Mine of Padre Freitas at Congonhas.—Sabará.—Caeté.—St. Joāo.—Cattas Altas.—Gold Mine of Guarda Mor Innocencio.—Enficionado.—Death of Rosario.—Arrival at Villa Rica.—Return to Rio de Janeiro and to England 264
No. 1.—Meteorological Observations, made on board H. M. S. Superb, during a Voyage from Plymouth to Rio de Janeiro 292
No. 2.—The specific Gravity of the Water of Botafogo Bay. 296
No. 3.—An Account of the Number of Slaves imported into Rio de Janeiro in the Year 1823. ib.
No. 4.—An Abstract of the Project of Constitution, published in Rio de Janeiro in August, 1823. 297
No. 5.—Project of the Constitution for the Empire of Brazil. 300
No. 6.—Account of a Pampero in the Rio de la Plata. 326
No. 7.—Meteorological Observation made at Buenos Ayres, in the Year 1822, comprising the Autumn and Winter of that Climate. 327
No. 8.— 328
No. 9.—An Account of Vessels which have arrived in the Port of Buenos Ayres. 329
No. 9*.— 332
No. 10.—Register of the Parish of St. Nicholas, Buenos Ayres, Dr. Ruiz, Rector. 334
No. 11.—Summary of the Population of the Provinces of the Rio de la Plata. 335
No. 12.—Message of the Buenos Ayres Executive to the Legislative Assembly, or House of Representatives. 336
No. 13.—Contaduria General. Estado de las Entradas y Salidas en Septiembre, Octobre, Novembre, y Deciembre de 1821. 351
No. 14.—Contaduria General. Entradas Salidas y Existencias que constan del Libro Mayor de la Provincia, del Ao 1822. 352
No. 15.—Contaduria General. Estado de las Entradas y salidas desde 1° de Enero hasta 31 de Julio de 1823. 353
No. 16.—Calculos Sobre el Erario de Buenos Aires en 1823, de cada Mil Pesos que el Erario ha recaudado en el Ao proximo pasado de 1822. 354
No. 17.—D. Feliz de Azara's Account of the Pampa Indians 355
No. 18.—A List of the Governors of Buenos Ayres, from November, 1819, to January, 1821. 369
No. 19.—Tristes of Peru. 370
No. 20.—Route from Mendoza to Santiago de Chile by the Pass of the Portillo. 373
No. 21.—Chile. Convocatoria al Congreso General. 374
No. 22.—Erario de Chile. 375
No. 23.—An Account of the Heights of some of the chief spots on the road of the Great Pass of the Andes, extracted from the "Memorias Astronomicas." 376
No. 24.—Route from Santiago de Chile to Mendoza by the Pass of Uspallata. 377
No. 25.—Cordoba. 378
No. 26.—An Account of the various Loans contracted by the States of Brazil, Buenos Ayres, and Chile. 380
The Provisional Constitution of Chile—The Director and Senate—Provincial Intendents—Faults of this Constitution, destroyed by the Army of Conception—Provincial Assemblies—Decree for the Formation of a General and Constituent Congress—Religious Institutions—Revenue—Administration of Justice—Internal and External Security—Alliances—Sketch of the Revolution.
IN the month of May, 1818, the late Supreme Director, D. Bernardo O'Higgins, appointed a committee of the best informed and most patriotic men, to form a Provisional Constitution for the State. Two months afterwards, a project was submitted for his approbation, and subsequently sent to all the districts of the
VOL. II. B
State, where books were opened to receive the assents and dissents of the whole population. It was generally well received; and during my residence in the country was strictly followed. Had no change taken place in the government and system, I should have placed the project in the Appendix; but, under existing circumstances, it will be sufficient to give the heads of it, and afterwards to show in what part it proved deficient and did not work well for any order of the State. The Director, in the Decree which promulgated the Proyecto, states, that in case the opinion of the people should concur with his own, the persons destined to fill the high office of senators were already named.
The right of the citizens occupy the first seventeen articles; and man, in a social state, taken up five more. The Roman Catholic religion is declared that of the State, and any other, contrary to the doctrines of Christianity, illegal. The next subject is the legislative power. It commences with stating, that the Chilians have the right to choose their own government, and to enact the laws by which they will be ruled, which can only be accomplished by deputies assembled in Congress; but such election being likely to occupy much
time, and as the business was pressing, a Senate would make such provisional regulations as the urgency of the matters would require. It then provides, that five senators are to be named by the Director, one of whom in turn is to be President for the space of four months. Five other senators are also named in like manner by the Director, who are to act in the place of the former, if from illness, or any other cause, they should be forced to absent themselves. The senators are to enjoy salaries of 2000 dollars each, and have the style of Excellency. They are to have then privilege of appointing the officers of their chamber; their persons to be inviolate; and a Commission, named by themselves, is to examine any cause of complaint which may be made against them. The duration of the sessions is to be regulated by the President. The qualifications of the senators are to be, the attainment of thirty years of age, and a character distinguished for talents, patriotism, and integrity.
The Proyecto next recapitulates the attributes of the Senate. It is specially to watch over the Constitution, and the notice of any infraction of it is to be laid before the Supreme Director, who is responsible for attending to it. In every city or town, there is to be a Censor
appointed to see that the Constitution is properly attended to. Without the consent of the Senate, no great affairs can be undertaken—no imposts can be laid, loans contracted, or war declared—no treaties of peace, alliance, or commerce—no ministers, agents, or consuls, can be sent to foreign powers—no levies of troops can be ordered, or, when raised, permitted to leave the country—and no public works can be undertaken, or new authorities or employments created.
The Senate is empowered to limit, add to, and amend the Constitution, as circumstances shall appear to warrant. All new laws made by the Senate, all abolition of laws which may be found to militate against the independence of the country, all reforms in the various departments of state, and all additions or corrections of existing laws, must be submitted, before their publication, to the Supreme Director, who, in the space of eight days, must assent or object to their promulgation; and in case of dissent, he must state the reasons of his opposition. In case of his assent, the law is to be published under a certain form. Should he refuse his assent to the law, and it be brought a third time for his approval, it will be published, and enforced, but in a different form. In any
cases of laws badly understood, or in any case of doubt or flaw, the Director may, de proprio motu, explain them. The Senate has the privilege of calling together, at proper time, a National Congress, to be elected in such way as they shall direct. In case of the death, resignation, or crime of any of the senators, his successor is to be named by the Senate.
The executive power exists in the Supreme Director, who is to continue to receive the salary he actually enjoys, but which the Senate may increase or diminish at their pleasure. He is to enjoy no other emoluments. His style is to be Excellency, and his military honour that of Captain General of the army. The command and regulation of the armies, the fleet and militia, the public tranquillity, the collection, distribution, and management of the public funds, are under the charge of the Director. He is to have the nomination of the various ministers, consuls, or agents to foreign states, and may through them open discussions relating to treaties of peace and preliminary negociations; but nothing can be concluded without the consent of the Senate. He is to maintain the strictest alliance with the provinces of the Rio de la Plata, and to watch over the increase of population, agriculture, industry,
commerce, and the mines. The care of the roads and posts is also entrusted to him. It is his peculiar privilege to name the secretaries of state; and he is responsible for them, as they are for their respective, employs. The Director is to take especial care to extinguish those intestine divisions which ruin states, and to endeavour to render the union as firm as possible. He is to uphold public credit, and, as far as it may be possible, pay off the existing debts of the state. He is to make a monthly report to the Senate of the state of the treasury. He has the power of confirming or annulling the proceedings of courts-martial, and may at his pleasure remit the punishment of capital crimes. And the Proyecto farther provides, that in case of resignation or death, the new Director is to be named by the Senate.
The limitations to the executive power are as follow. The Director cannot interfere in any civil or criminal process, nor in any way alter the system of the administration of justice. In case of the arrest of any one, he must be brought, within the space of twenty-four hours, before a magistrate. No high ecclesiastical offices are to be filled up by any persons who have not been rectors of parishes for six years. He is to employ no foreigners in any depart-
ment of state. And lastly, he is to allow the correspondence of citizens to pass unopened.
The three Ministers or Secretaries of State are to conduct their respective departments with that fidelity, intelligence, and prudence, which the good of the state requires. They are to issue no orders, or make communications of any kind, without the express concurrence of the Director; and any order or decrees made by them contrary to the Constitution will subject them to responsibility. The appointments of these officers of state to rest entirely with the Director.
With respect to the provincial governors and lieutenants, the Constitution provides, first, that Chile is divided into three provinces, the Capital, Conception, and Coquimbo; secondly, that each governor-intendent is charged with the jurisdiction of the district, and is a judge in ordinary cases. All matters relating to the police and revenue are to be under their immediate care. The military governors of Valparaiso, Talcaguano, and Valdivia, are to be chosen by the Director, and continue in office for three years.
Such are the heads of the Constitution. The Supreme Director, being well aware that the country was not sufficiently advanced in
constitutional views, or enough enlightened, to admit of a very popular form of government, when elections by ballot or otherwise should take place throughout the state, freed himself from this difficulty by naming a senate himself, of a few men devoted, as he thought, to his interests and those of the nation. Perhaps, at the period when the constitution was promulgated, it was the best that could be devised in the feverish state of the country. In all these new constitutions, there are several things to be remarked, and which prove beyond an argument in what a degraded state the people were kept under the Spanish government. The first is, that the larger part is taken up in defining and telling the people what their individual rights are; and these new and agreeable annunciations are sometimes used as cloaks to conceal various subsequent articles, which rather tend to curtail what was before stated to be without limit. All, without exception, however, have to their credit laid down means for the gradual abolition of Negro slavery. Secondly, all the elections are indirect, which arrangement naturally offers greater opportunities for corrupt practices. I believe on this subject, however, that the advantages of forming a part of the legislative power are not yet sufficiently
distinct or understood, to create much interest among the candidates, or tempt them to make great sacrifices to obtain them.
To return, however. The Supreme Director, having obtained the assent of the people to the constitution, very naturally concluded, that his friends the senate would go hand in hand with him in all measures likely to increase the prosperity of the country. The senate, on the other side, discovering their power, and finding that they could not be displaced without a trial before a tribunal of their own nomination, soon disagreed with the Director on measures which he brought forward for the interest of the country. Forming a junction with the secretaries of the departments, the senate bid defiance to the Director, and carried on thier own contracted plan of government, without attending to the more enlightened views of O'Higgins. Heavy duties were laid on foreign merchandize, and the senators were alike regardless of the proper administration of justice, and of the various other complaints which the people were inclined to vent latterly in the publications of the day. Could the Director have quitted this government, his power would have remained with his popularity undiminished; for his patriotic feelings were never impugned.
But thinking that he could not turn round on the constitution which he had sanctioned, or that, perhaps, by doing so, a civil war would be the result, he chose to remain to the last, and endeavour, as much as it was possible, to correct the badness of the system. The national congress, which might, in these circumstances, have assisted the Director, was never assembled; and, towards the end of the year 1822, after a trial of five year, the whole government was destroyed.
It appears, therefore, that however true the assertion may be, that a nation does not become soon fitted to receive a constitution, more particularly a nation among whom learning and information are at a low ebb; and that some years and some generations must, in all probability, pass away, before the proper state is acquired; yet, in this instance, it seems that the constitution was not sufficiently liberal: and a capital error being committed in the construction, the country became subjected to the tyranny of a few ill-informed men, instead of the dominion of one. The constitution, and not the people, was in fault. They chose the director, and he, in forming the constitution, was led away by his own goodness of disposition, without supposing that ill-advised men
would avail themselves of his error of judgment.
When the approach of the revolutionary army of the south, under General Freire, convened the government, it could no longer maintain its station. O'Higgins resigned the directorship. on the 28th January, 1823, and sanctioned the nomination of a junta of governors. Subsequently a council of state, composed of thirteen members, was assembled. On the 26th February the people were called together in St. Jago, and an exposé was made to them of the resources of the state. It was represented to them, that various attempts were being made to raise the flames of civil war; and farther, that if the present governors were unpopular, that they should be changed. The junta, however, when the address was concluded, were well received, and obtained the approbation of the assembly, for what they had done; and they were empowered, in addition, to seek and chastise any person endeavouring to disturb the public peace. This junta of government being recognized in all quarters, it decreed that an election of deputies for each jurisdiction should take place, in proportion to their respective populations, in order to ascertain the wishes of the
nation, and to preserve tranquillity in the country. The military influence procured General Freire the title of commander-in-chief.
In April, the provincial assemblies were invited to send deputies to the capital, to deliberate on the system of government to be adopted, and to decide on the person to whom the direction of public affairs should be confided. The deputies soon arrived in St. Jago. They consisted of D. Juan Egaa, for St. Jago; D. Manuel Noboa, for Conception; and D. Manuel Gonzales, for Coquimbo. These plenipotentiaries formed themselves into a provisional government, and named a director, ad interim. They decreed that the constitution should be formed on the basis of union and indivisibility, under a legislative senate, composed of men named by the three provinces of St. Jago, Conception, and Coquimbo; and farther, that the executive power should be vested in the Mareshal de Campo, D. Ramon Freire.
In July last, a decree was issued for the formation of a general and constituent congress, to be installed in St. Jago, on the 16th August. It is to be formed of deputies from all the towns, freely chosen, and in proportion to their respective populations. The elections are to be direct,
and the representation formed on the principle of one deputy for every fifteen thousand inhabitants.*
Owing to the interruption in the communication between Buenos Ayres and Chile, no accounts have been received of the meeting of this congress, or whether any new constitution has been drawn up. Seeing the errors of the former and other constitutions of the New World, which have been drawn up only to be destroyed, it is to be hoped that the leading men will adopt one on liberal principles, and likely to consolidate the strength and happiness of Chile. The general desire at present seems in favour of a federal form of government, for which the country, from its compactness, may suit better than the provinces of the Rio de la Plata.
The connections between Chile and the court of Rome have been at no time entirely suspended. The sentiments of the people, indeed, would have been effectually opposed to such a proceeding. Soon after the revolution, an agent was sent to Rome, and remained there until 1823, when he was recalled, chiefly on account of the expense. The pope, at that period, offered to send a nuncio to Chile, to regulate the
* See Appendix, No. 21.
affairs of the church, but this was declined also, on account of the expense, which in such cases usually falls on the country to whom this honour is paid. The bishop of St. Jago, during the rule of the Spaniards, was a suffragan of Lima; but some of his proceedings militating against the march of the times, he was banished to Mendoza. Being, however, a man universally esteemed, he obtained permission, in 1821, to return to his diocese; and his entry into the city, which I witnessed, took place with much joy and enthusiasm. The other provinces have always envied Chile the possession of a bishop, the circumstances of the times having by degrees left them entirely destitute of high church authorities. The late government was endeavouring to obtain the consent of his holiness to erect the province of Coquimbo into a bishopric; the magnificent church being in progress of building with that view.
The religious institutions in St. Jago were numerous. There were no less than ten monasteries and seven convents. Several of the latter were chiefly taken up with the education of children. It was computed that the real property of these establishments did not amount to less than five million of dollars. Many of the regulars, moved by the documents published
in Buenos Ayres, had expressed strong wishes to secularize; and the provincial and monks of Santo Domingo even petitioned the government for the requisite permission; but the general feeling on this subject was such, that the proper authorities could scarcely listen to the proposition. The only restriction which has been imposed, was regarding the age at which it should be lawful for persons to take the vow: this has been restricted to twenty-five years. By degrees more enlightened views will find their way to Chile, and the number of the monastic establishments be considerably reduced.
It is well known that, when the Spaniards possessed Chile, they derived no revenue from it. The alcabala, the royal fifths on the precious metals, and other inland taxes, were hardly sufficient to defray the expenses of government and the support of the military force, to repress the incursions of the Indians. It was quite necessary, for the subsistence and safety of Peru, and the security of the eastern provinces, that Chile should be under the Spanish rule; but no pecuniary or fiscal advantages resulted from it. The chief source of revenue is now derived from the duty of 26½ per cent. on foreign merchandise, forming 4-5ths of the whole amount of the treasury returns. The
commerce of the country has not yet found its level, and for a short time will probably decrease; because the trade, which has been hitherto circuitous, from the length of the voyage and the uncertainty of political events, will henceforward be direct. In a few years the consumption of British goods will increase prodigiously and remain steady; but at present more are imported into the country than the population can consume. The inland and direct taxes being almost entirely abolished, and the quantity of precious metal annually raised being much diminished, the other sources of revenue are very limited. On the other side of the account, the expenses of the army and navy have been enormous, and leave a sad deficiency in the means.
In May, 1822, a loan was contracted in London, to the amount of a million sterling, for the state of Chile, upon which interest was to be received at the rate of six per cent. After deducting the amount of the early dividends, the remainder of the loan seems to have been expended in the Peruvian expedition. The last financial report will be found in the Appendix.*
In the administration of justice, little or no
* No. 22.
change has taken place since the resignation of D. Bernardo O'Higgins. It is a matter as notorious as to be regretted, that, on all occasions, that incorruptibility was found wanting, without which judicial proceedings become a mockery. In enumerating the various tribunals, the establishment will appear large for the extent of population.
The supreme tribunal of justice is composed of five members, one of whom, under the nomination of the director, presides. The judges retain their situations during good behaviour. The next tribunal is the Cámara de Apelaciones, composed of three judges and a regent. These judges are all paid by the director, and take cognizance of both civil and criminal cases. The authority of this tribunal extends through the whole country. In civil causes, where the property in dispute does not exceed the value of 1000 dollars, any sentence once confirmed admits of no farther appeal. Besides these tribunals there are several other which confine their operations to commercial, mining, and fiscal questions. To judge from this array of law, it might be supposed that the population was twenty times greater than it is, and the people much disposed to litigation, which is not in fact the case. Formerly justice was very
VOL. II. C
tardy in pursuing criminals, who were allowed to remain long periods in prison, awaiting their sentences; but the new government have acted on several occasions with great energy. Some time since an Englishman was murdered in his house by two soldiers: they had secreted themselves in his room during his absence; after having unloaded his fire-arms, and as soon as they imagined he was asleep, they attacked and murdered him. A boy, who had been previously shut up by the murderers, gave the alarm as soon as they quitted the house; and pursuit being made, they were discovered at one o'clock in the day, several leagues from the city, with some of the property of the deceased upon them. After sunset, as the remains of the unhappy foreigner were being carried out for interment, the procession met the bodies of the culprits, brought in from execution. They had, in the space of a few hours, been tried and shot.
The care of the police is entrusted to one of the officers of the Cabildo; and it cannot be said, in spite of the melancholy instance just adduced, to be on a bad footing. Few street robberies take place, and murders have become very rare, notwithstanding the unsettled state of the country. It has been already mentioned, that, the southern portion of Chile is still in a disturbed
state, and very little personal security is enjoyed there.
The exertions made by General San Martin and the late supreme director, to raise troops to embark for Peru, are, considering the resources of the country, of a most surprising nature. In the first expedition, five thousand men were equipped; and, in the last year, two thousand five hundred more have embarked from Valparaiso for the same destination. From the reports of British officers who have led them on in several actions, it appears that they are soon trained to military discipline, and in personal courage are not to be surpassed. The army in the south and the small detachments near the passes in the Cordillera, together with the bodyguard of the director, may altogether form three thousand men, which, with the army in Peru, would amount to at least ten thousand men. The officers are, in great part, foreigners. The portion of the military force left in Chile, being extremely ill paid, brought about the late change of government, as will be presently more circumstantially related.
The navy, until lately under the command of Lord Cochrane, amounts to three or four vessels of fifty guns, and several corvettes and brigs. They were considered in a worn-out condition,
having been old Indiamen and ships of war sold out of our navy, and so badly supplied, that one of the largest went on shore on the coast of Peru, from an absolute want, as it was stated, of anchors and cables. They are chiefly manned by English and Americans, but the Chilians on board are well spoken of, having distinguished themselves on several occasions. No ships have yet been built on the coast of Chile, nor am I prepared to say which port would be most convenient for laying down ships; but, perhaps, Coquimbo in the north, and Talcahuano in the south, from the protection which is afforded there from the north winds, would best suit the purpose. Under these circumstances, and the state being deprived of the great activity of Lord Cochrane, it is more than probable, that, on the cessation of hostilities, the navy will be entirely reduced. Valparaiso has been hitherto the chief port of rendezvous; but, from its insecurity from the north-west winds, other anchor-ages have been sought. A port, a little to the north of it, was considered by Lord Cochrane as affording a better shelter.
The relations of amity subsisting between Chile and other states are as yet very trifling. The good understanding with Buenos Ayres has been of long duration, and naturally better
cemented than any of the rest; but it has been in furtherance of one grand object, the extirpation of the Spaniards. Whether the two states would agree in any other matter is extremely doubtful, from the feeling which is known to exist between them. Agents have arrived from Columbia, and latterly from Peru; and in Europe some government agents reside, to carry on the commercial relations: but at this early period of independence, regular diplomatic arrangements are scarcely to be looked for. Should Peru become liberated, the commerce and friendly relations must always be great; and with the eastern provinces, for the same reasons, there will be always commerce and the interchange of ministers. After Peru and Columbia in South America, Chile will take her station, and, from her compactness and strength of frontier, will be able, in spite of a limited population, to maintain her independence without difficulty, in any ordinary case of attack.
I shall now proceed to give a short account of the changes which have occurred since this country first threw off the Spanish yoke, of the recapture by the Spaniards, and of the subsequent liberation by the arms of San Martin.
The causes of the revolution in Chile, and in all the Spanish possessions in the New World,
are too apparent to make it necessary to dwell on them. While Venezuela set the example in the north, Buenos Ayres was the head of the revolutionary movement in the south; and after the latter virtually threw off the yoke in 1810, Chile closely followed her steps and established a junta of government. These proceedings had their rise in the distracted state of the mother country, from the aggression of the French; and when minds of no ordinary character viewed the conquest of Spain by that power as an event likely to happen, it was not surprising that the South Americans should seize the opportunity of declaring they would not submit to the orders of the Spanish court, when dictated by a foreign usurper. How long, without this act of violence on the part of France, the Spanish provinces would have continued to yield obedience to the mother state, it is not easy to say; but the time was fast approaching when the Creoles would no longer submit to the restrictions on their commerce, and to entire exclusion from places of honour and profit in the administration of affairs. That the immediate cause of this revolution must be looked for in the Old World, there can be no doubt, and that it was hurried by the events of the times; but there is no reason to show, why the colonies should not have
followed the example of those of other countries, when they become too powerful for the mother stock.
The first revolutionary movement were accomplished in Chile without difficulty. There were few Spanish troops in the country, and the two parties of Independents and Loyalists were opposed to each other without that acrimony which generally exists under such circumstances. The party of the latter were few; they could not deny that the Creoles suffered great grievances, but they argued that at the moment when the mother country was oppressed and humiliated, it was acting dishonourably to abandon her. The Independent party, on the other hand, was numerous, powerful, and in the future saw nothing to fear. They were acquainted with the sentiments of England, the only power which could affect them, and they considered them perfectly just, when the nature of the connections between the two European states, at the time, were viewed in a proper light. England having early declared,* that it should discourage any steps leading to a separation from the mother country, unless under such circumstances as should place Spain in the
* Lord Liverpool's Letter to the Governor of Curaçoa, 29th June, 1810.
hands of the French. In this case, she should assist the colonies to become perfectly independent, to prove an asylum for such Spaniards as did not choose to remain in Spain, in the humiliated state to which it would be reduced. From this prudent intimation, the colonies presumed that England, except in the emergency of the French power being absolute in Spain, would allow them to follow the dictates of their own breasts, and preserve a strict neutrality.
On the 18th July, 1810, the captain-general was forced to resign, and all native Spaniards desired to quit the country in a stated period, and a junta of government was appointed. After this event, the country remained perfectly quiet until the following year, when the governor of Valdivia, a native Spaniard, gained over some troops, and endeavoured to effect a counter-revolution; he was everywhere unsuccessful, and was at last taken prisoner and executed. But this was so far from alarming the government, that it dispatched some aid to Buenos Ayres, at that time pressed by the plans of Elio, the governor of Montevideo. The ports in the Pacific were, for the first time, opened to British commerce, and a free trade permitted. During the two following years in which the junta exercised its power, the changes in its
members were frequent. The Carrera family, one of the oldest in the country, gained great influence by means of doubtful character; and contrived, notwithstanding an exposure of their conduct which was subsequently made, to keep hold of the affections of the people. The state of Chile at this period was deplorable, the public affairs being badly conducted, and loudly calling for some redress. Early in 1813, an expedition, under the command of General Osorio, was despatched from Lima, and landing near Conception, soon gained some advantages over the opposing force. Several conflicts followed, which were terminated by the intervention of Captain Hillyer, and a convention was signed by plenipotentiaries, in April, 1814. By this act, Chile consented to send deputies to the cortes, in order to sanction the constitution framed by that body, and to acknowledge the authority of Ferdinand; but she expressly stipulated, that the internal government of the kingdom should be maintained in all its powers and privileges, and a free trade permitted with all neutral nations, and more particularly with Great Britain, to whom Spain, it was stated, owed her political existence. This convention remained in force until the October following, when fresh disputes taking place, and the ani-
mosities of both parties being highly excited, they had again recourse to arms, and the Independents being deficient of resources of every description, and abandoned by some of their own party, were completely defeated at Rancagua. O'Higgins, who signalized himself on this occasion, and a few others, escaped across the Cordillera. This event placed the whole country a second time under the dominion of Spain, but it demonstrated clearly what the feelings of the people were, and that henceforward the viceroy of Peru would require a division of his forces, to repel the advances of the Buenos Ayrians on the side of Upper Peru, and to keep down the revolutionary spirit of the Chilians. Many of the leader in these affairs were banished to the island of Juan Fernandez.
For some time after this defeat, General Osorio remained governor; he was succeeded by General Marcó, a man who seems to have made himself singularly disagreeable to the Chilians, who were anxious to have another opportunity of leaving the tutelage of Spain for ever. Emissaries from the chief families passed over the Cordillera, and endeavoured to rouse the eastern provinces to an exertion in their favour; representing to them, that their own state of in-
dependence could be only ephemeral while Chile remained in the power of the Spaniards; giving them every inforamation as to the amount and disposition of the Spanish force, and assuring them that the country would powerfully assist all the generous exertions which might be made in their favour; and farther to stimulate their exertions, they stated that General Marcó intended to march across the Cordillera with eight thousand men, and after gaining possession of Mendoza march forward to Buenos Ayres. These appeals were not lost on the latter state; a young officer, who had given proofs of great devotion to the cause, and of considerable military talent, was sent to Mendoza to take the command there, and organize such troops as he might be able, to resist the threatened attack of the Spaniards. This plan did not fully suit the ardent mind of San Martin, and he conceived the idea of forming a force as rapidly as possible, and attacking General Marcó on his own territory. Twelve months were consumed in enlisting troops, preparing supplies of every description, and collecting a sufficiency of mules and horses for the passage. It was only at the commencement of the year 1817 that he felt himself sufficiently powerful to attempt the passes of the Andes, and to dispute
with Marcó on the plains of Chile, whether independence or slavery should prevail. The Spanish force in that country being eight thousand men, while the utmost San Martin could muster was only half that number, it became necessary by some ruse de guerre to compensate for this vast difference. San Martin, aware of the character of the southern Indians (Aucaes), one of whose leading characteristics is the impossibility of keeping a secret, held a meeting with some of the caciques, and after solemnly swearing them to preserve secrecy, obtained their permission to pass by the Planchon, and thus attack the country in the south. They took his bribe and directly afterwards sold the grand secret to Marcó, who putting every faith in the intelligence, despatched a large portion of his force in that direction. San Martin having completed his arrangements commenced his march in January, and without obstruction reached in thirteen days the vallies of Chile. At the foot of the pass there is an extensive plain surrounded by an amphitheatre of hills, called the plain of Chacabuco, in which the Spanish force, amounting to four thousand men, was drawn up under the command of the President. San Martin and O'Higgins immediately attacked the enemy with a force which scarcely
amounted to three thousand men, worn out with the privations and cold of the Cordillera; but such was the generalship of San Martin and the bravery of his troops, that they bore down all before them, and gained the day. General Marqueli, who commanded the Spanish infantry, many field-officers, and thirteen hundred men, were left on the field of battle, and the President Marcó was taken prisoner. The loss of San Martin was considerable, for at the commencement of the action the ground was disputed by inches. This battle was gained on the 12th February, and as the distance from the field of battle to the capital is not more than twenty leagues, it became free the same evening. The residue of the Spanish forces took refuge in Conception. The President Marcó, who fought this battle over again with me, attributed the disaster to the money that had been lavished among his troops and officers; but the route was most complete, and the immediate effects of it were to place the whole country, except in one insulated point in the south, at the disposal of the victors.
A junta of government was then formed and the directorship instantly offered to San Martin, who refused the dignity, but recommended D. Bernardo O'Higgins, who had contributed so
greatly to the cause, as a proper person to have it conferred on him.
The Director lost no time in organizing forces and consolidating the resources of the country; he foresaw that the Viceroy of Peru would not easily abandon all hope of recovering the country, and he determined that every nerve should be strained to resist the attempt. In order to drive out the remnant of the Spanish army, San Martin and O'Higgins marched to the southward, and laid siege to Talcahuano, one of the strongest places in America. Into this fortress, which has been called the Gibraltar of the south, the Viceroy Pezuela threw twelve hundred men; and early in 1818 five thousand Spaniards, under the command of General Osorio, landed also at this point. Taking the garrison of Talcahuano, and some levies made in the neighbourhood, he marched towards the capital with a body of not less than eight thousand men, and confident of success reached Talca. The patriot army, consisting of about nine thousand, chiefly formed of new levies, was badly provided with provisions and all the necessaries of war, but the partriotism of the inhabitants of St. Jago was such, that they sacrificed their plate and jewels to procure the requisite supplies. Soon after San Martin marched
into the field a number of skirmishes took place without any decisive advantage on either side, until the 19th of March, when the advanced corps under the Director drove the enemy back with considerable loss into the streets of Talca, beyond which they had advanced. Upon this, Osorio determined to make a night attack, which proved successful beyond his most sanguine hopes. The patriot army was dispersed with the loss of its ammunition, baggage, and artillery. San Martin collecting the stragglers, and being joined by the right wing, which General Las Heras had brought off with great skill, endeavoured with the utmost celerity to retrieve the misfortune. He retired to the capital, which was in every way better calculated to afford him recruits, and, in case of extremity, might have been defended. Had Osorio followed up this defeat, the cause of freedom must have been destroyed; but he did not reach the neighbourhood of the capital until fourteen days after the patriots, who had made the best use of the time in forming another army and collecting supplies. The two armies met again on the 5th of April, on the plain of Maypo, to the southward of the city, and the early part of the day was taken up with manœuvring. The force on both sides was nearly equal, and San Martin, finding his
men confident in their powers, and wrought up to the highest pitch of enthusiasm, gave the signal to advance. No ground could be better adapted for military movements, and the charges on both sides were described by an eye-witness as such as would have done credit to European tactics. The fire of the Spanish infantry and artillery was so heavy that at one period some signs of indecision were perceptible in the patriot line, but support being granted, the charge was renewed. The attacks made by the Spanish cavalry were always unsuccessful, and they were driven back under their own guns. At length the whole of the Chilian force being brought up, the Spaniards could no longer resist the attack, and began to give way on all sides; still however they disputed the ground with the greatest courage, and it was only after repeated charges that they fled. Osorio, seeing his last hope destroyed, fled almost unaccompanied to the southward. This battle, one of the most sanguinary fought for the independence of South America, cost the victors a thousand men, while the loss of the Spaniards was estimated at two thousand killed and wounded, and three thousand prisoners, and the whole materiel of the army.
Depressed as the country had been by the
former victory of Osorio, its joy now seemed to exceed all bounds, the public rejoicings lasted for many days, and the nation at length felt that it had thrown off the Spanish yoke for ever. It was on the 4th May that the news of this defeat reached the viceroy at Lima, and struck a panic in the breasts of all the native Spaniards. They foresaw that the war which they had hitherto been able to keep at a distance would be brought to their own doors, and they feared there was little chance in the reduced state of the army and navy, their deficiency of supplies, and the mixed nature of the population, of a successful resistance being made.
As if to deprive the Spaniards in Peru of their last hope, Lord Cochrane, who had been selected to take the command of the Chilian naval force, arrived at Valparaiso on the 4th December, and with that remarkable activity which he possesses, sailed down the coast with four of his largest vessels to attack two Spanish frigates in Callao Bay, an attempt which proved unsuccessful, but he harassed the whole trade of Peru, and made many valuable captures. On the 1st March, 1819, he declared the whole coast, from Guayaquil in the north, to the desert of Atacama in the south, to be in a state
VOL. II. D
of blockade. In the mean time, the residue of the Spanish force, amounting to five hundred men, were forced to capitulate and lay down their arms to General Balcarce. These troops were on their retreat to Valdivia, but the Araucanos refused to allow them to pass. They were entirely without baggage, and encumbered with a helpless train of women, among whom was a convent of nuns, with their confessor at their head.
During the year 1819, the Director of Chile and San Martin were indefatigable in organizing the force intended to be sent against the Spanish empire in Peru, and taking into account the population and resources of the country, their efforts were in every way stupendous. In order to obviate the difficulty regarding the expenses of the undertaking, a treaty was signed in Buenos Ayres on the 5th February, 1819, by which it was agreed that they should be defrayed by the Independent Government of Lima, as soon as it should be organized; and farther, the two contracting parties guaranteed the independence of the state, which should be subsequently formed in Peru.
On the 20th August, 1820, the liberating army, amounting to five thousand men, under the command of San Martin, sailed on board
the fleet under Lord Cochrane, for the coast of Peru. The first disembarkation took place at Pisco, thence a portion of the army, under the command of General Arenales, was dispatched into the sierra, to take the capital in the rear, while the commander-in-chief should threaten it with the remainder in front. For this purpose, the expedition left Pisco, and appeared off Callao: it next proceeded to Huacho, where it disembarked, and subsequently the head-quarters were established in Huara.
In the mean time, Chile, under the command of O'Higgins, remained in a state of quiet, excepting in the southern province of Conception. Colonel Freire, who held the command there, had been called to St. Jago to proceed with a thousand men to the coast of Peru with the expedition of San Martin, but in his absence Colonel Benavides crossed the Biobio, and attacked Talcahuano. This advance obliged Freire to return, and the royalist chief, after meeting with some reverses, again retreated across the river. This diversion, however well planned on the part of the viceroy, proved in fact of little service, and the successes of the liberating army were gradual and decisive. No event of importance occurred in Chile during the year 1821. The disturbances in
the south were, however, terminated by the capture of Benavides, who was brought to the capital and hanged; and Carrera, who, since the directorship had been vested in his enemy O'Higgins, had endeavoured to disturb the tranquillity of the country, was taken prisoner in the Pampas, and shot at Mendoza.
The former of these two chieftains was a native of Conception, and for some time held rank in the patriot army; but subsequently turning round to the other party, was, when taken prisoner at the battle of Maypo, sentenced to be shot. I have before related how he escaped owing to the sentence being imperfectly executed. Pezuela, led by the reports of his influence and talents, gave him a commission, under which he kept alive the Spanish cause for a short time in the south, but never accomplished any decided advantage. When unsuccessful, he was cruel, and when straightened in his means, cunning and deceitful. His character has been painted in dark colours by the Chilian authorities, and perhaps with some truth, but it cannot be denied that other chiefs on both sides have been guilty during the war of similar atrocities, without meeting with the same degree of notoriety, nor an end equally well merited.
The other chief, Jose Miguel Carrera, was born at St. Jago, of a good family, and contrived by his agreeable manners and talent to obtain a seat in the government previous to the events of 1814. He is represented (but with little foundation) to have left the patriots in a sudden manner at the battle of Rancagua, and subsequently proceeded to the United States. When the events of 1818 placed Chile a second time in a state of freedom, he returned to the Rio de la Plata, and took up his abode for some time at Montevideo, the common refuge of all the disappointed chiefs of that part of the world. He was violent in his animosity to Buenos Ayres; and it was this circumstance which contributed greatly to render him popular with the lower classes of Chilians, who viewed with abhorrence the influence of that state. There were many excuses for this feeling; his two brothers had been shot at Mendoza, and his estates and property confiscated in Chile by the other party; and his presence in that country would have been attended with every risk. In 1820, he visited Buenos Ayres at the period when Lopez and Ramirez had carried the war to her gates; and quarrelling at this time with a General Makena, they went out, and the latter fell. This affair, in which Ma-
kena was solely to blame, increased his popularity, and stopped the mouths of many who calculated on the reported character of Carrera, being deficient of personal courage. Some time afterwards, he proceeded into the Pampas, and organizing an Indian force, threatened to carry the war across the Cordillera and rouse up all his adherents in the country. In the midst of these endeavours, he met his fate in the manner before mentioned.
While Chile became free from these disturbers of her peace, a strong party inimical to the government was rising in the city and in every district of the state. The exertions made in favour of Peru, and the heavy taxes necessary to make good the expenses, and at the same time the little outlet for Chilian productions, pressed severely on all classes and made them desirous of some change. San Martin, after conquering in Peru, had retired to Chile and crossed the Cordillera, and Lord Cochrane had left the Pacific and entered into the employ of another state. The finances were so much reduced that the troops left in the country, and those filling public employs, were many months in arrear of pay. Under these circumstances it became necessary to raise a loan in Europe, which was accomplished in May, 1822, to
the amount of a million sterling. It does not appear that the proceeds of this transaction were dedicated to the payment of the troops, at least to those under the command of General Freire in Conception. The discontent among them was strongly excited, and an event which happened soon afterwards produced an open rupture between them and the government of St. Jago. An English merchant, who had resided many years in various parts of South America under difficult circumstances, and was well known for his talents and enterprize, proceeded by sea to Conception. On his arrival there he naturally fell into the company of General Freire, who was previously acquainted with him, and on hearing his grievances, and the distressed state of his army for want of their pay and allowances, suggested to the chief the grant of a license from him to load a cargo of wheat; a measure strictly forbidden by the government, in order to harass the Spanish force under La Serna, at that moment greatly suffering in Peru for want of provisions. The general was pleased with the idea, and unwilling that his troops should undergo farther sufferings while he had the means of relieving them, and, I believe, historical accuracy forces me to add, himself as well, gave the ne-
cessary license to embark a large cargo, upon which of course a handsome profit was realized. This transaction, as might be supposed, excited the greatest indignation in the government, and Freire was accused of assisting the enemy; in reply, he declared that the state of the army was such that he could not avoid the expedient of paying them; and on some farther correspondence of a warmer nature, O'Higgins on the 10th of December put some troops in march towards the southward. Two days after, General Freire issued a proclamation complaining of the proceedings of the secretaries of state, who, he declared, intended to starve the army; he made no complaint against the director, with whom, it was said, he was in correspondence. He instantly commenced his march against the capital, and demanded judgment on the secretaries, the deposition of the government, and the installation of a sovereign congress. On the 19th January, 1823, while O'Higgins assembled what forces were near the capital, General Freire obtained possession of the country between the Biobio and the Maule, and the provinces of Conception and Coquimbo declared for the new order of things. After these events it was unlikely that the remaining province would hold out, or that the director could
longer, stifle the murmurs of discontent which prevailed in the city. On the 28th January, the people assembled in groups in the Consulado, and loudly called for the appearance of the director, who refused to present himself, and to whom they subsequently sent deputies; these he threatened with the force of his power, which was nearly reduced to a name, and afterwards harangued the few troops he had collected with much warmth and eloquence; finding, however, the troops lukewarm in his cause, and the people anxious for a change, at ten o'clock at night he resigned the command. As soon as this event was notified, a junta of governors was formed, to which the ex-director gave his sanction, General Freire, a few days after, entered the capital, and being declared commander-in-chief, took upon himself the government.
I have before shown how this violent revolution effected by the soldiery was sanctioned by the states of the kingdom, and the directorship placed in the hands of General Freire. Like all governments formed on such principles, the first measures were extremely popular: the reduction of duties, and the downfall of some public men odious in the eyes of the country, were measures well calculated to please the people;
but as soon as they were accomplished, and in spite of the surprising exertions, which a few months afterwards despatched a reinforcement of 2500 men to Peru, the popularity of the government had declined, and was considered, on the departure of the last advices, to be decidedly on the wane.
The last revolutionary movement of which we have an account, took place in September, 1823, when the royal standard was hoisted near Conception, but it was soon put down. Under whose command or by what force this attempt was made is unknown; but it is more than probable that the governor of the island of Chiloe was concerned in the plot. The time for making such attempts has long since passed by, and nothing short of independence will ever satisfy the inhabitants of this country.
Departure from St. Jago.—Valparaiso.—Earthquakes, Volcanoes.—Sail for Callao.—Arrival in Lima, the Viceroy, Description of the City, the Inhabitants, Dress of the Ladies, Tapadas, Mode of Life, Population, Negroes, Indians.—Mines.—Climate, Diseases.—Vegetables and Fruits.—Departure from Lima for Callao.—Embark and proceed to the northward.—Sail for Valparaiso from Huacho.—Outline of the late Political Occurrences in Peru.—Return to St. Jago de Chile.
ON Wednesday, the 11th of April, having procured horses and a guide, I left St. Jago for the port of Valparaiso. For the first six leagues the route lay over the plain of Maypo, thinly covered with trees or vegetation; thence we proceeded over an intermediate chain of hills called the Cuesta de Prado to a small inhabited spot called Bustamente. Near this place I visited a gold mine, but the ore seemed of very poor quality; it was embedded in a greenstone rock with much carbonate of lime disseminated similar to that on which the capital stands, and the immediate matrix of the gold was sulphuret of iron. The excavation was by no means
deep, and few men were employed in it. Before the ore was sent away to the mill, it was subjected to a slight roasting, performed in the rudest manner, and used more as a test of the presence of gold than to free it from the dross. After quitting this spot the country became more wooded, and in a few hours we reached the second chain, called El Sapato. The road to the port is necessarily very much frequented and some North Americans established a coach to proceed thither three times a week for the convenience of passengers. The irregularity of the road and the hills which it was necessary to pass, and which had never seen any thing previously but ox-carts, combined with the doubtful skill of the driver, led those who had business at the port to prefer the more safe mode of travelling on horseback. Obtaining fresh horses at the Cuesta del Sapato, we arrived at seven o'clock in the evening at Casablanca, a small village where I determined to sleep. Number of a species of ground-squirrels covered the track between the Cuestas. Leaving the village, which has been subsequently destroyed by an earthquake, early the following morning, we continued our journey with rapidity, and on gaining the summit of another chain, the deep blue waters of the
Pacific at once burst on my sight. The sun, which had just broke through a thick fog, gave me all the advantages I could wish, and the bay of Valparaiso with the ships at anchor, immediately under my feet, presented a most beautiful and interesting scene, and one that remains deeply impressed on my memory. Descending the heights of Valparaiso by a zigzag road, we entered the Almendral, a long straggling village which joins the port, where we arrived at eleven o'clock, and an English merchant, who has been since unfortunately drowned on his native shore, and whose hospitality, like that of his partners in the capital, was unbounded, received me into his house. The distance from St. Jago is computed at ninety English miles.
Valparaiso, including the Almendral, forms a street of three miles long, which surrounds a part of the bay. In several places the heights approach the sea so closely that the rock (green stone) has been blown away to allow of a road between them. The houses are the generally mean, even the governor's house and the customhouse are of poor appearance; but all the symptoms of great increase of trade are visible in many new erections for warehouses. The forts built to defend the entrance of the bay have been quite dismantled for some time. The population may be estimation at 5000.
On the left of the town the hills are leas precipitous, and by various ravines there are paths which lead to the summit. These spots abound in the potatoe, growing in a state of nature; upon which Mr. Sabine has written a very interesting paper in the Horticultural Transactions.* The soil is a reddish coloured loam mixed with large water-worn pebbles.
No earthquake occurred during my residence in Chile, excepting a temblor, or gentle shake, which I experienced at St. Jago, about eight o'clock in the morning, on my return from Peru, and which is of such common occurrence as not even to form a part of the conversation of the day; I left the country without witnessing the effects of this phenomenon. An idea prevails that one extensive earthquake takes place at intervals of a century, and as one of that description occurred in the year 1730, I was led to believe by many persons, that such an event would take place before the lapse of any great length of time; and as if to corroborate this fanciful idea, had I remained some time longer in the country, I should have witnessed the earthquake of November, 1822, one of the most destructive which the country has ever experienced. From the accounts of intelligent persons, who were residing in Valparaiso, near
* Vol. v. p. 249.
which the utmost violence of the earthquake was experienced, the shock was felt from Valdivia in the south to Copiapo in the north, a distance of nearly a thousand miles; and while they describe the earth as having been raised en masse, they believe that it had also a horizontal movement, which they think is fully borne out by the appearance of buildings and trees being partly turned round. Several village were totally destroyed, and at Valparaiso it is said that upwards of two hundred persons lost their lives on this occasion. From the circumstance of the houses being built close under the heights, no place could be worse calculated to withstand the effects of such a frightful visitation. Of late years, earthquakes, very destructive in their operations, but of limited extent, have become more frequent. Copiapo and Coquimbo were almost entirely destroyed in 1818, and few years pass without damage being committed in some of the districts of the country. The shocks do not appear to be noticed beyond the eastern foot of the Andes, not at all extending into the Pampas.
While there has been an increase in the number of earthquakes, the irruptions from the various volcanic chimneys of the Andes have become more rare. Molina states that there were
no less than fourteen volcanoes in a state of activity in that part of the Andes which forms the boundary of Chile, and he particularly mentions the mountain of Peteroa, situate in 35° 5′ S. which in the year 1762 burst out with great violence. He describes as well the volcano of Villa Rica in the Araucano country, an isolated mountain eternally covered with snow and with the most luxuriant vegetation at its foot. With regard to those volcanoes said to exist in the south-eastern ridges of the Cordillera, it is now impossible, from a want of knowledge of the country, to speak as to their state; and in the more northern portion of the Chilian Cordillera there are no means of saying what proportion of the snowy peaks are hollow and might have once ejected fiery matter. In Arauco, where the chain approaches nearer the Pacific, at times irruptions have been observed by ships at sea; and it is distinctly stated that at the moment of the late earthquake the two volcanoes near Valdivia, called Chinal and Ranco, burst out with great violence, and then subsided to their usual state of quiet. Falkner the Jesuit states, that when he was in the Vulcan, below cape San Antonio, he witnessed vast clouds of ashes which darkened the sky. He adds, that they spread over the jurisdiction of Buenos Ayres and crossed to the op-
posite side of the river; they were caused by the irruption of a volcano near Mendoza, the wind carrying the lighter ashes to the distance of three hundred leagues or more.* There can be no doubt, however, that the number of volcanoes now in action in this part of the Andes has greatly decreased.
On the 14th April I embarked on board the Creole frigate for Callao, and leaving the harbour with a fresh breeze, proceeded rapidly down the coast. The extreme regularity of the trade-wind, which appears to catch the sails while it leave the sea in a state of calm, renders this voyage the most agreeable that can be conceived. On the Saturday following we came again in sight of land, and on the next day clearly made out the island of San Lorenzo, which forms one side of the bay of Callao. The lofty chain of the Andes formed an object of admiration to all on board, and more particularly to those who saw it now for the first time. In this part it approaches nearer the coast, and when distant a few leagues from the shore it remains unconcealed by the intervening chains, which in any other situation would be considered high. Under the nearest chain, which
* Falkner, 4to. Hereford Edit. p. 51. Vuulcan, in the Pampa tongue, means opening.
VOL. II. E
formed an amphitheatre, the numerous steeples and towers of Lima were visible, and presented an object at once grand and imposing. We anchored in the bay towards the afternoon.
The next morning the commander-in-chief of the British naval force, his suite, and myself, proceeded to land, and when near the jetty we were met by one of the port admiral's boats, into which we stepped and soon reached the shore. Walking through the village to the fort we paid a visit to the Governor Sanchez, and to the port admiral; and after some arrangements were made for proceeding to the city, distant about five miles, the next day, we returned to the frigate in the same way as we landed. To explain this precaution it may be necessary to state, that at the moment Lima was besieged by sea and land. Lord Cochrane was in the habit of entering the bay with his squadron, and not long before by a coup-de-main, carried off one of the Spanish frigates lying close under the batteries, which are considered by judges to be powerful and well placed, more particularly that of San Felippe. His lordship, it appeared, frequently rowed about the bay in his gig with the lead in hand, sounding with the greatest nonchalance, while shot of all shapes and sizes were directed at him from the batteries
and gun-boats. The liberating army of San Martin was only a few leagues to the northwest of Lima, and had cut off all communication excepting between the city and its port. Under these circumstances it is not suprising that every precaution should be taken by the governor to prevent the fort being surprised in the day time.
The bay of Callao is formed by the island of San Lorenzo and another smaller island which lies within it; it is considered safe and well fortified. To the right of the village there are some remains to be seen of old Callao, which was destroyed, as well as the capital, in the year 1746, by an earthquake. The village Consists of not more than two hundred houses, or more correctly huts, outside the fort, which contains the government warehouses and the residences of the chief officers. From the proximity of the city, it has never been inhabited excepting by a few fishermen and smugglers; and although a considerable trade was carried on with Cadiz, it was chiefly on government account, and the goods were warehoused either in the fort or the city. The appearance of the garrison was not calculated to give rise to the idea that the place was impregnable.
The next morning the party of the preceding
day landed with the same ceremonies, and getting into square learthern boxes on two wheels, called valençins, drawn by miserable horses, all the better ones being taken for the supply of the army, we proceeded towards Lima by a fine straight road, ascending gently at every step. The country on both sides, enclosed with low mud walls, was flat and free from timber. On arriving near the city we entered a shady avenue with seats on both sides, and passing the gate, which is neatly built and has an inscription on it, we drove to the palace of the viceroy. His excellency received us with some state and invited us to dine with him at two o'clock.
The officer holding this high situation, which had been one of the most lucrative in the gift of the King of Spain,* was D. José de la Serna, a fine looking man of about fifty years of age; he was raised to the viceroyalty by a violent act of a junta of officers, to the exclusion of D. Joaquim Pezuela, who had been invested with it for some years. The details of this change of the government are briefly these. On the 29th January, 1821, the officers of the army encamped in Aznapuquio, addressed a letter and remonstrance to the Viceroy Pezuela; they
* The Viceroy of Peru received about 65,000 dollars per annum.
stated that when they beheld the political edifice in this part of America crumbling to the ground; a rapid advance on the side of the enemy, while their own means of defence became more limited; when for want of resources the best devised plans were defeated, and that in cases where the strictest silence was required, the enemy and the public were well informed, even before the officers who were to execute them; when, said they, the government was surrounded by persons of suspicious character, if not of decidedly revolutionary principles, and when they saw the near approach of the destruction of the viceroyalty, and with it that of the whole of South America, they would be deficient in their duties to the state and to the king if they remained longer silent and did not endeavour to arrest those evils which were so well calculated to increase the dangers by which they were surounded. They stated farther, that an enemy inferior in force had landed on their shores, and trusted more to the inactivity of the government than to any feeling in the country which was favourable to them; that, an officer of little experience was placed at the head of the army drawn up to receive them, while the post demanded a commander who possessed the greatest prudence and circum-
spection. After recapitulating the defeat which had taken place in the Sierra de Pasco by the patriot general Arenales, and the general deficiency of the means the government had recourse to, the officers complained of the nomination of General Vivero to the government of Guayaquil, and of the Marquis of Torre Tagle to that of Trujillo. After producing other proofs of the incapacity of the viceroy, they concluded by stating that they saw no other mode of remedying the evils complained of than that of D. Joaquim Pezuela laying down the command and investing another person with the viceroyalty; and that the army and the people pointed out Don José de la Serna for that high dignity. The rebel officers declared that the viceroy and his family must embark in the space of twenty-four hours on board the Andromache English frigate, or some Spanish vessel bound to Panama.
This strong measure, which the times and the near approach of an enemy, scarcely warranted, was followed up, and Pezuela placed the government in the hands of D. José de la Serna, but obtained time to settle his affairs in the country. More energy was apparent after this change, but the army of San Martin still maintained its position, and even
invested the capital more closely. Thus one of the first acts of the conquerors in the New World, the dismissal of a viceroy, would seem likely to prove one of their last. La Serna arrived in Peru in 1816, charged by the king with the command in Upper Peru, and while the late viceroy distinguished himself in that quarter on many occasions, and beat the Buenos Ayrian troops in several pitched battles, no particular actions are mentioned in which La Serna appeared conspicuous.
At two o'clock we returned to the viceregal palace, and formed part of a numerous company at the dinner table, which was well served in spite of the distressed state of the city for provisions at the time. The rooms which we passed through were splendidly adorned with gilding, and the palace, which externally offers nothing to the view, seemed well and conveniently laid out. During the time of dinner a number of fowls were wandering about the room, and picking up the crumbs which fell from the table. At four o'clock we broke up; and the time of the siesta approaching, we left the palace and found the city for the next two hours as still as midnight. About half-past six o'clock the streets were again crowded, and when the bell struck the tiempo de oracion,
every one stopped and joined inwardly in prayer.
The streets of Lima are all built at right angles, they are formed of small rounded stones washed down from the mountains, which are extremely fatiguing to the feet; all those in the direction of east and west have a small stream of water running down them, and the Rimac, a mountain torrent, which flows to the sea, passes through a part of the town. The suburb on the other side of the river, to which abridge crosses, abjo de la puente, is inhabited by the less respectable part of the community.
The plaça, or great square, which is said to be five hundred feet above the Pacific, is built on two sides with shops and stalls. The cabildo occupies another side, a building very much in the Chinese style, and in front of it the cathedral, a very handsome pile. The riches which have been lavished at various times upon the interior of this edifice are scarcely to be credited any where but in a city which once paved a street with ingots of silver to do honour to a new viceroy. The balustrades surrounding the great altar, and the pipes of the organ, were of silver. It may be mentioned, as a proof of the abundance of silver ornaments, that three weeks prior to my arrival a ton and a half of silver was taken from
the various churches, without being missed, to meet the exigencies of the state. The church of San Pedro is remarkable for its architecture, and the small church built by Pizarro, which has never been totally ruined by the earthquakes, and which is situate abajo de la puente, is visited by all strangers. The monastic establishments in Lima are very numerous, and of singular extent and splendour. The convent of the Franciscans, which it is calculated covers an eighth part of the whole city, forms a small town within itself. The usual number of its inmates is 160. The other public buildings worthy of notice are the palace of the archbishop, the mint, the palace of the inquisition, when it existed in Peru, and a noble establishment for retired secular clergymen, adjoining the church of San Pedro. The former college of the Jesuits is converted into a foundling hospital. The bridge over the Rimac has nothing to recommend it; but on the right bank of the river the late viceroy Amat laid out large sums in forming a public walk called the Paseo d'Agua; at the termination of it the bull ring is seen. Another object which strangers are directed to visit is the Pantheon, but in my opinion it is taking a long walk for little gratification. It is the burial place of a part of the
city, and is surrounded and divided by walls with niches for the reception of the dead. The funeral service is performed in the church which adjoins. Many years ago a municipal regulation was published to prevent the towers of the churches being constructed of any other material than wood and painted canvas. This was in order to obviate the horrors which occurred during earthquakes, owing to the population flying thither; but latterly they have been built of clay, which in time takes the hardness of stone.
For the same reason the houses have rarely an upper story; but when they have, an overhanging wooden balcony is attached to the windows: they are all constructed of unburnt bricks, with a court and garden in the rear. The walls of the court and gateway are covered with fresco paintings; and when there is a dead wall in front of the house of any respectable person, it is decorated in the same way. The rooms are gaudily adorned with gold and silver, and the floors are generally tiled; an estrada or long narrow sofa fills up one side, and a piece of carpet covers that portion of the room. The roofs of all the houses are perfectly flat, and as it never rains they are merely composed of lath and plaster.
The nobility and higher orders of the clergy appeared to live in some style, and drove about in their caleches richly gilt, and drawn by one horse at a foot pace. The streets were at all times full of monks, the whole number of whom in the city is computed at nearly eleven hundred. They still preserve that custom of begging which, until a few years ago, distinguished the cloistered inhabitants of Europe, and proved so annoying to travellers. Latterly the viceroy, finding the army in want of recruits, threw every difficulty in the way of professing. The influence of religion is considerable; one order, that of Buena Muerte, is distinguished by the black gown and large red cross on the left arm. As these friars have the peculiar privilege of attending persons in their last moments, they are mounted on mules, and seen at all times galloping about the city and running a race with death. The convents for women consist of fourteen, with a rental of not less than one hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Independently of these there are several establishments of Beatas (sœurs de la charité) and of Casas de Exercicio, where ladies, leaving their families, shut themselves up for two or three weeks at a times, in order to submit themselves to a stricter
discipline in fasting and prayer than they can observe in their own houses.
As an university has existed in Lima since the year 1551 (the most ancient consequently of the New World), as well as many other establishments for learning, besides many private schools; and as, in addition to these reasons, the Spaniards sent to Lima were always of a better class and more educated than those who went to Buenos Ayres, Chile, and New Granada, literature has been by no means overlooked, and several works published in Lima have been much sough after. The opportunities of acquiring information in Lima are so numerous that the generality of men are well informed and polite.
The ladies have also the full benefit of the various nunneries and establishments for instruction, which abound in this capital. They are generally endowed with great beauty, and their figures boast that rice fulness of person which is the truest symptom of health in a warm country. They have very small feet and ancles, and no means are resorted to to produce this effect.* Their persons are shewn to great ad-
* Some of the most beautiful women in Lima are native of Guayaquil.
vantage in the usual walking-dress, the saya and manto. The former is composed of an elastic silk petticoat, like a stocking, which is drawn over the head down to the ancles, and then fastened round the waist with a buckle;—this is the saya. It is usually worn of a deep blue, black, or cinnamon colour. Its elasticity makes it set perfectly tight, showing the contour of the person; and some ladies wear it so contracted at the ancles that they can scarcely step over the little streams which run down the streets. The manto is formed of a large square piece of black silk, which is first placed behind, and two strings attached to the corners are tied in front, it is then brought over the back of the head down to the waist, and held there by the arms, which are enveloped in it. One eye is alone visible, and generally the left. It appears at first impossible to recognize one's acquaintance in the street in this costume, but custom soon overcomes the difficulty. This is the walking dress of all the respectable persons, indeed of every class above the menial slaves, and they may be seen occasionally with an old saya that does not fit them, which belonged to their mistress. An Englishman, who arrived at Lima during my stay there, observed a remarkably fine figure in the street,
and determined to find out her abode. He followed her down several streets, and as she entered her house she threw back her manto, and to his great regret he discovered a black face. I am informed that the ladies wear during the warm months, under the saya and manto, merely a shift finely ornamented with lace, and a neckerchief. The ladies, when concealed in this dress, are termed tapadas, and the appearance of so many in the streets is not a little extraordinary.
This custom of wearing veils or going tapada, has been abolished in Spain by repeated edicts. In 1586, a royal statute was published in Madrid upon a petition addressed to the Court. It is stated in it, that the custom of wearing veils, or going concealed, has been carried to such excess, that serious evils have arisen both to God and the nation by permitting them; no conoce el padre á la hija, ni el marido á la muger, ni el hermano á la hermona, i tienen la libertad, tiempo, i lugar á su voluntad, i dan ocasion á que los hombres se atrevan á la hija ó muger del mas principal com á la del mas vil i bajo, loque no stria si diessen lugar yendo descubiertas, a que la luz discerniesse las unas de las otras;* and after
* The father cannot recognize his daughter, nor the husband his wife, nor the brother his sister; they have time and opportunity at their command; and the men not being able to distinguish the difference between women of rank and the lowest of the sex, may fall into error which could not happen if they went exposed, and their features seen.
pointing out other inconveniences, it concludes with the prayer to his Majesty, that he would be pleased to order that henceforward no woman should go tapada, under such a penalty as he should in his royal pleasure fix, to put an end to so great an evil. His Majesty (Don Felippe Segundo de gloriosa memoria), in reply to this petition, considered the complaint well grounded and subjected every woman wearing a veil, or concealing the face, to a penalty of three thousand marevedis, equal to about twenty shillings of English money at this time. Some years afterwards, (1593,) there was a farther statute passed, para que las mugeres no anden tapadas. In 1600, a third law was enacted, and in 1639, a fourth; which, after referring to the three preceding regulations, states the inconveniences which have resulted from the former statutes being little attended to, and orders, that all women of whatever rank they may be, shall walk with the faces uncovered, in order that they may be seen and known; and that they shall not be permitted to conceal the features either entirely or in part, con manto ó otra cosa,
The penalties for the first offence, are the confiscation of the mantle and ten thousand marevedis in money; and for the second, the mantle and, twenty thousand marevedis, and at the discretion of the magistrates, banishment. By these four laws, veils were entirely prohibited in Spain; but great difficulties were encountered in putting them into execution, and they soon fell into desuetude: the inconvenience of such regulations being too severely felt in a country like Spain by all classes; this custom, which was probably introduced by the Moors, still prevails in Andalusia and other provinces. An eye-witness at the court states, that even within two days after the promulgation of the last laws, the ladies were seen passing an before under the King's windows, with the face covered. Although there was nothing in these regulations which referred to the Indies, yet the authorities of Lima; in 1609, endeavoured to obtain the consent of the Viceroy to encrease the penalties, in order to put a stop to a proceeding which, in the language of the judicial act, dello poderse sequir escandalos i pecados publicos, causes scandal and flagrant irregularities. His Excellency (the Marquis of Montesclaros) replied at length to the law officers: after stating what had been done in such
cases by his predecessors, he viewed the execution of the law as attended with great difficulties, and advised them to desist from any attempts to put it in force; accordingly the measure dropped. By an ecclesiastical council, however, held in Lima, females were forbidden, under pain of excommunication, to go tapadas in the solemn procession of Good Friday; neither were any women permitted to appear at the windows during the processions with the face concealed. This church regulation drew forth one of the same tenour two years afterwards in a council held at Mexico. Excepting on these occasions the Lima ladies walk concealed de medio ojo, and advance many substantial and unanswerable reasons, at least by gentlemen, for not changing this custom; the sun scorches their faces, and they are prevented visiting the sick and performing charitable actions without publicity. It appears, therefore, unlikely that any change will be made in the saya and manto, a style of dress so peculiarly calculated to shew off a fine figure, an advantage possessed by almost every Limenan.
In the house the costume partakes more of the ordinary fashion of Spain than of France. The hair is ornamented with flowers, and a black veil is thrown back on the head. The manners of the ladies are extremely agreeable, and they
VOL. II. F
are as kind and attentive to foreigners as the Spanish women every where show themselves. In their persons they are extremely cleanly, taking the cold bath several times a day, although occasionally take snuff. They get rid of the unpleasantness which attends the former operation by chewing paper. It is not unusual for them to smoke a little at the theatre, but they always choose small cigars, and placing their fan before them, retire to the back of the box. This custom may be thererfore considered on the wane. It proceeds in a great measure from the almost constant fogs which prevail in Lima, and from an idea, not without foundation, that it prevents stomach attacks. The habits of the people have generally a tropical turn in every thing. Dances are not so common as in Chile, nor any of those games so prevalent in that country. Cards, chess, and music, which require little exertion, and sitting tranquilly at the bull ring, are the more usual enjoyments of Lima. The people of rank rise early, and their slaves bring them directly a light breakfast of chocolate and fruit; sometimes, it must be confessed, stewed meat is added. Dinner takes place about two o'clock, and consists of excellent fish, meat dressed in a variety of ways, and
highly seasoned. The wine is either Peruvian or European. The siesta follows until six o'clock, and about nine o'clock a cup of chocolate forms their supper. At evenging parties, which are of constant occurrence, punch is the more usual beverage.
The population of Lima, amounting to about 70,000 souls, is composed of the following classes and proportions:—about 25,000 Spaniards; 2,500 monks, nuns, and secular clergy; 15,000 free mulattoes, 15,000 salves, 7,200 Mestizos, and 5000 Indians. The Spaniards are now chiefly Creoles, as the Chapitones, or those born in Old Spain, have mostly quitted the country. The monks and nuns, of whom Lima is so full, will, under a new order of things, diminish considerably, and there is little reason to doubt that the patriots have already made enquiries as to the amount of their respective revenues. Many years have elapsed since Peru has imported negros into the country, for the number was sufficiently great to raise sugar, coffee, and cocoa, the articles which grew in the situations consigned to their care. And with regard to the labour of the mines, that was performed by Indians, who could better support the cold of the mountains than the negro, who accordingly Seems to have been
little employed in them. Some of the sugar plantations near Lima are worked by five hundred negroes. But since the entry of San Martin, on which occasion he declared that all negros who should volunteer to swell his ranks, as well as all children born after that day, should become free, the numbers have very much diminished, and in a few years the pure negro will be unknown. At that time the disorders committed by the blacks in the town were revolting and chiefly directed against their former masters and mistresses. They had previously received intimation of the measures which had taken place in their favour, and had planned in consequence their particular schemes of outrage and revenge.
Of late years the race of Indians, the descendants of the subjects of the Incas, have slowly increased in numbers. In the year 1793 there were about 3,600 Indians in the city, and it is now calculated to contain about 5000. This increase is observed throughout the country, but the causes are not apparent, unless it be attributed to an increase of attention to them and the abolition of forced service. The poll-tax, which amounted to about a dollar per man annually, and, small as it was, caused some difficulties in the payment, was neve
removed by the Spaniards. San Martin has since relieved them of this tax, and made other regulations to better their condition. They are naturally a pacific race, well dispositioned, but indolent, and had they been better treated by the Spaniards, would have become faithful and attached subjects, as well as intelligent and active citizens. The system pursued by the Incas, as well as that adopted subsequently by the European conquerors, was little calculated to raise their energies or give them a correct notion of their own talents. They are copper coloured, rather inclined to a short stature (at least such as I saw), small headed, and boasting good features. The whole number of Indians in the viceroyalty amounts to nearly 800,000. Under the circumstances of their state it ceases to be a matter of wonder that they have never been reconciled to the Spaniards. The system of government and religion, which was mixed up together by the Incas, was well calculated to keep alive the recollection of the monarchy and the death of the last who swayed the sceptre. They were slaves at that period, but they had greater satisfaction in working for their God than for the Spaniards, who forced them to toil in the mines, and scarcely allowed them respite. There was no common interest, nothing
but a mutual and disguised hatred. At times, however, these secret murmurings have given way to open rebellion, and the war which was carried on with Tupac Amaru, who declared himself to be the descendant of the last Inca, in the year 1781, is well known to those who take interest in the affairs of this remote corner of the earth.* Since that rebellion, which was terminated by the execution of the leader, other disturbances have occurred, and an officer, who commanded the troops in Upper Peru for several years, informed me that he lost many of his men by the Indians rolling down large masses of rock in the narrow defiles.
The accounts we possess of this singular people are sadly deficient. The work of the Inca Garcilaso is undoubtedly the best, but much is yet to be learnt, or perhaps never can be learnt respecting them. That they were very far advanced in civilization and in the arts, there are the remains of large national undertakings to give satisfactory proof. Gold, silver, and emeralds, were worked with great skill; canals and roads were planned by the Incas through countries where more than common
* I met with a curious folio MS. account of this rebellion during my residence in Buenos Ayres: the marches and countermarches of the troops on both sides were minutely detailed.
skill was required. Even near Lima, where it has never been asserted that the great mass of the Peruvians took up their abode, the remains of cities, several leagues in extent, afford a sufficient proof that at one time the population was extensive. The great bulk appears to have dwelt on the side of the Cusco. It is on all hands agreed that they were not the indigenes of the country, and their own traditions point to the west as the quarter from which they came. Their habit of chewing the leaves of the coca mixed with natron, instead of the betle and chunam, would evidently mark their original country to be India. I am informed, nevertheless, by the best authorities, that there is not any analogy either between any of the languages of the East, or those spoken in the islands of the Southern Pacific, with the Qquichua, or language of the Incas, to warrant the assumption of a common origin. More than one dictionary and grammar* have been published of this tongue by the indefatigable Jesuits.
* The dictionary and grammar in my possession from one thick octavo volume; it was published in Lima, 1608, by Padre Diego Gonzalez, a Jesuit. An edition of the vocabulary was published separately in 1614, 12mo. I am indebted to my friend Henry Heuland, Esq. for this rare book; he procured it, through his connection in spain, from the Oidor of Cusco.
It does not appear that the latter were very successful in the conversion of the Peruvians, as I apprehend, for this simple reason, which also holds good with our East India possessions, that while on the eastern side of the continent, and in Paraguay, they conferred all the benefit on the indigenes, collected them together, fed, nursed, and protected them from the enmities of more powerful tribes; in Peru, on the contrary, the missionaries have been fed by the natives, have been taught the use of a variety of medicinal plants and herbs, and shewed themselves in fact ignorant and inferior to the native priests, who had held them in subjection until the conquest, and with whom they still offered up their private adorations. Men, who considered themselves descended from the Incas, were unwilling to be baptized, an act by which they lost consideration with their fellows. On an excursion to Magdalena, about a league from the city, to visit the ex-viceroy Pezuela, with General O'Reilly and some other officers, we came to some Indian huacas or graves, large mounds of earth raised many feet above the level. Several have been opened in different parts of the country, and the remains were found wrapped up in cotton cloth of various colours, in some instances tamboured; they had been.
deposited in a sitting posture, with their faces towards the rising sun; by their sides were placed vessels to hold water, the number of which was greater or less according to the rank of the deceased. These vessels are of a singular structure, and, as far as I know, dissimilar to any thing which we have any account of among other nations. They are made of earthenware of a black colour, one side is formed of a round vessel, which holds about a pint and a half, with a long thin tube to pour from; the other part joined to it is sometimes in the figure of a man, sometimes a bird or animal, from this a handle goes over to the part which contains the water: by a simple contrivance of two holes, a whistling noise is made by the water being poured out.* While engaged in examining the huacas at Magdalena, an Indian passed by, who was asked by General O'Reilly what the mounds were, or if they contained proceeded with sorrow and regret strongly marked on his countenance. Some days afterwards my whistling jug was shewn to one of them, who instantly said the Cacique in front
* I was so fortunate as to procure one in Lima; it was found in a huaca near Santa, as the veritable skull of an Inca.
of it was nearly related to him. That some of the Peruvians living at a distance from the capital, and who are more immediately descended from the last Inca, still continue to mourn for him, is a fact well know; and the mournful songs, or yarabiés, which lament that unhappy transaction, are chaunted at this hour. By the last accounts received from Peru, it appears that the Peruvians, who had been taken into the service of the patriots, had fled precipitately on being opposed to their old masters, and had caused the loss of the day. Without at all inferring from this that they are unfriendly to the new order, it must be rather attributed to their very unwarlike disposition, and the idea that their state will be little ameliorated. The mixture of whites and Indians has now become less common, and the progeny of the negro and Indian, called chino, is seldom met with.
The whole population of Peru, including the Indians, amounts to 1,400,000 solus.
The observations which have been already made respecting the mines of Chile apply as well to those of Peru. I am of opinion that their proceeds have diminished from the same causes within the last few years, but by no means from any want of mental. During the year 1819, two steam engines were carried to
the mines of Pasco. The man who brought them from England calculated on finding a sufficiency of wood for fuel, and he was for some time at a considerable loss for a substitute, to the no small gratification of the other miners. Going out, however, one morning, he found two seams of coal, and overcoming another difficulty of an easier description, the want of water, the engines were set to work, and the mine being cleared of water, the produce of silver was enormous, and continued so until the occupation of that sierra by the patriot troops under Arenales, when it became no longer advisable to work. All the specimens I saw from this mine were native silver in a carbonate of lime, and were rich. This mine has been worked from very early times, but the beds of metal extend so far on the surface that there is little depth in the excavations, which, until the arrival of these engines, were cleared by a common hand pump. Of the state of the other principal Peruvian mines at this time nothing is with certainty known. Every fact is carefully concealed for fear the patriots should lay on contributions. With machinery, and a few years of quiet, the produce cannot fail to exceed its former large limits.
Nothing has more excited the astonishment
of travellers in this part of the world than the climate of Lima and the neighbouring coast. In European countries rain falls in abundance, and within the tropics with remarkable violence, but here is a spot situate within twelve degrees of the equator, with a sandy poor soil, where it has not rained for fourteen years, and according to the authority of others, for a much longer time, and which nevertheless produces some of the finest fruits and heaviest crops to be met with in any quarter of the globe. The latitude of this city is 12° S. and 76° W. long., and it is built on a plain which gently slopes to the Pacific, from which it is distant five English miles. The great chain of the Andes passes within twenty leagues, but spurs from it approach within three quarters of a league of the gates, and form an amphitheatre, in which the city is built. These sierras may be on an average 2,500 feet high and keep off the northerly and easterly winds. The soil, like that of the greater part of lower Peru, is sandy. The barometer is little affected by atmospheric changes. Dr. Unanue, the worthy author of the Tratado sobreil Clima de Lima, gives its mean height at 27·4; but little dependence can be placed on this estimation, for such a fact would mark a height of 2,500 above the Pacific,
which does not accord with the reality, for it has been ascertained by other means that the great square of Lima is built on an elevation of only about 580 feet above the sea. In corroboration of this doubt Dr. Unanue proceeds to say, that Mr. Curson did not agree this mean with a barometer of Berge's made on Sir Henry Englefield's plan, so that little confidence I fear can be placed in this mean. The thermometer varies from 61° to 84°. In this part of the Pacific the usual wind is from the southward, excepting at times when it blows with extreme violence from the north. At daybreak there is a gentle breeze from the west, which, towards eleven o'clock, comes round to the southward, and at sunset to the south-east. During the winter time, from April or May to November, damp fogs continually prevail, and during the rest of the year they take place at the changes of the moon. These mists arrive with the morning breeze, and in the middle of the day, during the summer, are dissipated by the sun's power. In the evening the south-easterly breeze brings them again forward. At the other season the sun is obscured for several succeeding days, excepting on some days towards the end of autumn, when the sun is perfectly bright, and on other days in winter
when the tun is entirely concealed; the rest of the year may be considered as one perpetual change from light to dark. While the valley of the Rimac is thus kept in the most fertile state by these wet fogs, the rain falls with great violence in the neighbouring sierra, accompained with much thunder. This last phenomenon is so rare in the valley that the dates of the thunderstorms are accurately preserved. Since the year 1582, it appears that only four have occurred. I have already noticed that in the Chilean Cordillera the thunderstorms are frequent, while the plains below were perfectly free from them; and in the autumn in the Andes the snow-storms are seldom unaccompanied with lightning. These are the chief data which I can furnish respecting this singular climate. Mr. J. F. Daniell, whose authority on these subjects is very high, supposes, with great ingenuity, that as atmospheric evaporation and precipitation may be regarded as a species of constant distillation, it might be possible that a condenser existed in the neighbourhood of a place in the form of a mountain, which might determine the stream of vapour to set constantly upon itself, and convert it to rain, to the exclusion of the valley, over which it might pass, and which, upon the same supposition, would be
warmer than the natural progression of the relative height would require. In fect the great Cordillera near Lima is eternally covered with snow, and would form a condenser, such as Mr. Daniell supposes, and thus the waters of the Pacific again pour down by the Amazons and other streams, to join the Atlantic, and thereby lessen the difference in the relative heights of the two oceans, according to the received opinion in this part of the world.
It has been before stated that this peculiarity of climate is confined to the valley of the Rimac and to all those parts of lower Peru where the Cordillera approximates the Pacific. At Guayaquil, on the contrary, where the distance between the mountains and the sea is considerable, the rains are heavy and the mists of rare occurrence.
The earthquakes to which this country is so peculiarly liable are supposed to occur once in the course of fifty years, and the epochs of 1586, 1630, 1687, 1746, and 1806, when they have produced disastrous consequences, seem to favour this notion. In Lima the idea was prevalent that the shocks of late years have not been so violent as formerly. The people attribute much of the sterility of the country to their effects, and moreover assert that since the earthquake
of 1687 the ground will no longer produce wheat. The soil of Lower Peru seems little favourable to the growth of any vegetable but the prickly pear, being chiefly sandy near the shore, and the large quantities of sugar, wine, tobacco and rice are chiefly raised on the banks of ravines, where the vegetation is extremely rapid. It may be therefore easily conceived that the streams and springs have been affected by the motion of the earth, and certain situations rendered sterile for want of water which were before replete with vegetation; other situations, not yet observed, may have gained in the same ratio. This would explain the statement, but whether it is really founded on fact I have no means of saying. The climate of Lower Peru, owing to the heat, could never have been very favourable to the growth of corn. One fact, however, appears to accompany every earthquake in South America, that heavy rains follow immediately after. The earthquakes of 1687 and 1746 were succeeded by rain, and after the violent shock of 1806, the streets of Lima were almost inundated for several days, a circumstance which must have completed the terror and ruin of the inhabitants.*
* Unanue, p. 57.
Since heat and moisture are the prevailing characters of this climate, the diseases to which it is incident partake in part, if not entirely, of a tropical turn. While the complaints of all warm climates, such as fevers of various description and attacks of the liver, are the more usual complaints, asthmas, coughs, and other diseases of the lungs, which have been hitherto thought peculiar to colder regions, are experienced during the summer months; but upon the whole the climate cannot be considered unhealthy, although there are few instances to be met with of extraordinary longevity. The difference in the habits of the Lower and Upper Peruvians are nearly as marked as the respective vegetable productions, and few of the inhabitants of the sierra remain long on the coast without suffering from fevers of an intermittent or inflammatory description.
The vegetable productions of this country are numerous and of very dissimilar aspects and habits. While sugar, rice, tobacco, yams, sweet potatoes, and cocoa are raised in the warmest situation, grapes and quinoa (chenipodium) are planted in colder spots, and potatoes in the most elevated. Of this last plant there are many varieties of excellent quality,
VOL. II. G
more particularly one common in Lima, and called there the papa amarilla, or yellow potatoe; it is produced in the greatest abundance in the sierra, about thirty leagues north-east of Lima. The arracacha, about which so much interest has been excited, is unknown in Peru; I was informed, however, that the root is common in New Granada, and that it is both of a yellow and white colour, and in taste similar to a boiled chestnut. The camotes, or sweet potatoes, grow as large as in Rio de Janeiro, and seemed to be held in great estimation in Chile; it was the only commission with which I was entrusted by the ladies of that country on my departure for Peru; unfortunately the cicumstances of the country were such that it would have been more easy to have brought away any thing than articles of subsistence.
The fruits of this part of the world are varied and excellent. The grapes are highly flavoured, but the wine is of inferior quality. It has always been affirmed that the Spaniards prohibited the growth of the vine in Chile and Peru, but it is only necessary to refer to the Mercurio Peruano to observe, that, although guilty of many cruelties towards the colonies, they were on this score innocent. That in some of those
which were situate nearer the mother-country, it was the custom to destroy the vineyards and tobacco plantations, is undeniable; but it is equally true that wines and brandies have been objects of exportation for many years, both from Mendoza, Chile, and Callao. The other fruits, such as the melon and water-melon, the granadilla, of exquisite flavour, and the palta(laurus Persea), which can boast of little, are in great abundance; but one fruit, the chirimoya, is of such admirable taste that it deserves a more particular description. The term is qquichua, and is derived from chiri cold, and muhu seed, or cold seeded, an epithet to which it is fully entitled. The tree which produces this fruit is about twelve or fifteen feet high, with branches extending to the ground and large broad leaves; the flower is small, of a pink colour and remarkably sweet scented; the fruit varies in size from an orange to a large melon, and is covered with a smooth green skin; the interior or pulp is white, and either liquid or easily cut with a spoon, and enveloping a numbar of shining black pips of the size of an almond kernel, which, on exposure to the air, become of a light brown colour; the flavour is not easily described, but the suffrages of all
persons are united in its favour; it resembles the custard-apple more than any fruit I am acquainted with, but it is very far superior to it. Some persons have compared it to the small white tartlets which are seen in our best confectioners' shops; it contains, in short, that happy mixture of sweetness and acidity with delightful scent which forms after all the perfection of fruits; it may be eaten to excess without being in the least noxious, excepting when the stomach is weak, in which case, Dr. Unanue says, it must be abstained from. It is difficult to say whether it will be ever raised in our hothouses with success, but it would be a great acquisition to our tables. It is considered to be a new species of Annona.
Before quitting Lima I ought to mention that there are several manufactures to be met there, very much in request. Among the first are articles of silver filagree of exquisite work-manship, which are chiefly made in Huamanga, consisting of animals, and devices for burning pastilles, holding fruit, &c. The workmen, I understood, were of a mixed race, like the greater proportion of those exercising handicrafts in the city.
Another fabric highly esteemed in all the
Spanish possessions, is that of a species of grass, which is bleached and plaited into various articles, such as pouches and cigar cases, of extreme regularity and fineness. Hats of the same material, but coarser, are exported in large quantities, and found well adapted to warm climates. I could obtain very little information respecting the raw material, farther than that it grew on the coast to the northward in profusion. I was equally unfortunate respecting the tinder, which is carried in silver tubes in the pockets of all classes, for the convenience of lighting cigars. It is however the inner bark of a tree which grows near Quito, but of what genus or what is the common name in the country I could not ascertain. The pastilles of Lima are very celebrated and much used to drive away insects, but whether the latter have become accustomed to them I know not; these insects may be considered the only plagues of this part of the world. The mosquito is not so troublesome as in other warm countries, but fleas of more than usual size and activity try the tempers not only of foreigners but of the natives, who make war upon them in every way. I never saw such numbers of these disgusting and annoying insects in any other place; they
swarmed like flies on the sea beach. The other entomological production incident to beds, to use the expression of the worthy Doctors Hoppe and Hornschuch in their erudite travels, it must be confessed, is far too numerous. Dr. Unanue asserted that insects were not more common in Lima than in the large cities of Europe, and that in Paris alone there were upwards of seventy species of cimex; but after making every allowance for climate and want of rain, I was obliged to give him credit for a large stock of the amor patria.
No period could possibly be more unfortunate for visiting Lima; the city in a state of siege, a large portion of the old Spaniards absent with the army or returned to the mother-country, and the Creoles expecting some change and doubtful of its effects, were all circumstances which distorted the natural features of the city and made me little anxious to remain, even if it bad been advisable. The few English who remained, not exceeding three or four, were viewed with considerable jealousy, and regarded as little else than the spies of the patriot cause. In such a posture of affairs, having visited every thing that was interesting in Lima, and as there was no possibility of reaching any
of the mines, I conceived it of little use to remain longer, and thought it would be better to accept the offer of returning in the Creole.
On the following Saturday I departed in a valencin for Callao, and being much later than I ought to have been, could make out with some concern the sails of the frigate loosened, and the men straining at the capstan. When half the distance was completed, as fast as my entreaties with the driver could effect, I saw about a mile in advance the host arriving in a carriage at a foot pace, with the usual attendants, bells, &c.; there was no remedy, I was obliged to draw up on one side, and alighting from the carriage remain for some time on my knees, while I fixed my eyes on the Creole, on board of which I expected to embark, and feared that every turn of the men on the deck would be the last: to use the Spanish expression, I sang in an agony. At length the host arrived, and after it had passed a hundred yards, I jumped into the vehicle, and reaching Callao, got into a boat and was carried on board the Owen Glendower, Captain the Hon. R. C. Spencer, and with the commander-in-chief and his staff, whom I found there, proceeded with the trade-wind down the coast.
The next morning we passed the Marquesas, small uninhabited islands covered with numbers of sea birds, the reliquiæ of which (estiercol) was used by the ancient Peruvians, as well as by the Spaniards, as an excellent manure. Sometimes one of those immense birds of the Andes, the condors, was seen hovering about and looking out for prey. They are taken in two or three ways by the natives, who find them extremely destructive to the young lambs and kids, which they easily carry off in their talons; and there are not wanting instances of young children having been treated in the same manner. The more usual mode of capture is by laying the skin of an ox or horse freshly killed on the ground, under which an Indian conceals himself: another remains in ambush at a distance. The bird, attracted by the smell of the skin, perches upon it, and is instantly seized by the man, who being thus protected, holds him down, while his comrade sallies out and despatches him with a club. It is reported that the ancient Peruvians made figures of children in clay mixed up with hair and fibres of trees, upon which the bird pounced, and was afterwards unable to extricate himself. One of these immense animals was sent to England in the same
ship with me, and on several occasions shewed his carnivorous and rapacious habits. He seized a sailor by the lip, and attacked a large albitross, which had been taken on board; running his beak into the eye of the latter, he ate him up, bones, feathers, and all, usque ad unguem, to the very claws.
We arrived in Salinas Bay, where we remained some hours, and then proceeded to join the Creole, which we did off Huacho the following morning. We found several English vessels carrying on a traffic with this coast. The protection which the commander-in-chief afforded to the British trade is duly appreciated by all who had interests in that quarter. The difficulties he had to contend with, the various conflicting interests he had to compose, and the constant calls on his talents and prudence, are hardly known even by those who had the best opportunities of being acquainted with every circumstance.
I shall now return to the political events which have happened in Peru since San Martin was left with his head-quarters established in Huara. He remained there for many months in a state of inactivity; but his emissaries, despatched throughout the country, sowed with
care the seeds of freedom, and endeavoured to prepare the people to come forward in the patriot cause. Upon the whole, however, the progress of this system was slow. It is obvious that under a government such as Spain maintained in these countries, it was the higher classes of Creole miners and agriculturists who were the most depressed and humiliated, and found their wealth and talents despised and neglected, because they had the misfortune to be born Americans. The lowest classes would gain little by a change. Liberty and Constitution, like any other terms heard for the first time, were little known or ill understood. San Martin had therefore to effect his purpose with the higher ranks. These last were told that they would gain an increase of consideration by forming a part of the legislative or executive powers, and that they would obtain markets for their produce, which they were little aware of; that, in short, a free trade was all that was deficient to make Peru powerful and happy, which they would obtain, if they gave encouragement to San Martin, and declared their sentiments openly to the Spanish authorities.
These representations had decidedly considerable effect; but on several occasions the
conduct of the patriots did not accord with that disinterestedness, which at all times ought to have accompanied a war which has been termed a war of opinion. Wherever they landed on the coast, opinion. Wherever they landed on the coast, destruction and desolation appeared to be the order of the day. At Pisco, famous for its brandy manufacture; at Arica, a town of some size, the patriots left behind them in both places sad spectacles of a want of discrimination and common sense which, more than any thing else, contributed to retard the measures which San Martin was anxiously endeavouring to forward.
The system, however, pursued by that general, began to produce at length the desired effect. The viceroy, after a fruitless attempt at negociation, in which both parties appeared to advantage, found the minds of the inhabitants of Lima too strongly imbued with ideas of liberty, to offer further resistance in the capital. He accordingly withdrew his troops on the 6th July, 1821, and a few days afterwards San Martin entered and held his levees in the viceregal palace. Callao, which still remained in the hand of the Spaniards, became the next object of attention, and was blockaded by sea and land. On the 28th July, the solemn decla-
ration of the independence of Peru took place with considerable pomp, and medals were struck on the occasion. On the 3d of August San Martin took upon himself the sovereign authority under the title of Protector.
About six weeks after this event, the Spanish army, under the command of General Cantarac, which had retired to the neighbourhood of Huaja, returned towards Lima, and, marching past the gates, proceeded to and relieved Callao, or rather withdrew from it the treasures which had been placed there previous to the abandonment of the capital. The patriots made no active exertions on this occasion, and allowed the Spaniards to retreat unmolested. San Martin has been much blamed for his conduct on this occasion, but it appears to me unjustly so. His army, although numerous, was badly organized, and formed of fresh levies, and by attacking Cantarac, one of the best generals in the country, he would have risked every advantage he had gained, and placed in jeopardy the whole success of the cause. A few days after this advance, the fortress of Callao surrendered. The rest of the year 1821 was consumed by the liberators in organizing troops, and forming plans to complete the conquest of the country,
and several small forces detached against the royalists met with defeat.
San Martin, finding from the state of the Spanish armies, and the sentiments of the country, that re-inforcements would be necessary to complete the undertaking, proceeded to Guayaquil to hold a conference with Bolivar. In his absence the authorities left in Lima issued various hard and cruel decrees against the old Spaniards, and their property of course. With their wives and children they were forced to leave the country at a short notice, and to quit those scenes to which a long residence had made them attached, and embarking at Callao, proceed they knew not whither, and retrieve their fortunes they knew not how. The better part of the patriots, irritated by these and other proceedings, seized the minister Monteagudo and put him on board a ship bound to Panama.
The Protector, on his return from Guayaquil with troops furnished by Bolivar, called together a constituent and sovereign congress, and on the 20th September, 1822, in a very sensible address, placed in their hands the government of affairs, and retired as a simple individual to chile.
From that moment the affairs in Peru have
borne a very chequered appearance. The sovereign congress appointed a governing junta, perfectly unfit for their calling, and the public discontent was completed by the defeat of the patriots, on the side of Arequipa, at the commencement of the year 1823. Shortly afterwards Rivaaguero dissolved the congress, of which he was the president, and nothing but anarchy prevailed. In June, 1823, General Cantarac marched down, and again took possession of Lima. He remained there fifteen days, and levied supplies of clothing for his troops.
The affairs of the patriots looking thus unprosperously, Bolivar arrived with a force of four thousand men in september, and another re-inforcement of Chileans landing about the same period, formed conjointly a large force. The Spanish troops still maintained their positions in the sierra.
On examining the map, it will be at once seen that the war is entirely one of resources, and consequently, unless some very unlikely event occurs, must be of considerable duration, and of a chequered appearance. When the Spaniards march down from the sierra, and leave their supplies behind, they are attacked by the pa-
triots, and defeated; and on the other hand, if their adversaries advance into the mountains, they meet with the same fate.
As we must consider all the Spanish South Americans as possessed of the same temper and dispositions, the same feelings and jealousies, and the same greediness for command, there can be no reason why those in Peru should act differently from the rest, and should smother their animosities, and at once consolidate their power by a proper system of government. Upon this point the Spanish generals, and two of them, Cantarac and Valdez, are considered the best in South America, will have great advantages over the Creoles, and availing themselves of the anarchy which seems on the point of breaking out, may be able to harass the patriots, if not to accomplish something decided by coups-de-main. Taking great interest in the fate of Peru, I should be most sorry to see the Spanish power reinstated on its former basis; every one must lament such a misfortune, which happily seems impossible, from the revolution of men's minds in the country. To free Peru from the Spaniards, force was undoubtedly necessary to second the inclinations of the inhabitants; but it may be asked
whether a remedy of a milder description than what was administered, might not have had a readier and a better effect. A longer period was necessary to effect a change, because the climate, predisposing to indolence, made any exertion annoying and grievous, and the prospect afforded by the other provinces, all more or less in a state of confusion, was decidedly against any revolutionary step; but had Peru in the course of a short time beheld Chile and Columbia and Mexico settled and happy, she would undoubtedly have followed their example, and accomplished, without foreign assistance, and without the ruin of the country, that object which is still the source of contention, and likely to remain so for years. The state of the country is represented to be deplorable: agriculture, the true wealth of the nation, entirely destroyed, the mines neglected, the country without capital, and the chiefs of the people without talents to govern and without influence to control.
To return to the voyage.—We left Huacho on the afternoon of the 30th April, and on the 13th May arrived off Mas-afuera, a small elevated island covered with trees; and some
hours afterwards we passed the island of Juan Fernandez, celebrated on several accounts. It was then uninhabited, but shortly after the Chilian government collected together a number of criminals and banished them thither. They had scarcely remained three months on the island when they mutinied, murdered the guard, and, taking to the boats, had no difficulty in reaching the main land. Since that period it has been free from colonists. It is so well known from Anson's account, that there is no occasion to give any description of it. Sandal wood, one of the products of the island, is occasionally sought by some of the enterprising vessels cruizing about in the Pacific.
Two days afterwards, we arrived in Valparaiso bay, after a surprisingly quick passage of a fortnight from Huacho, an undertaking hitherto seldom accomplished in less than three weeks or a month. It was effected by running completely through the trade in the first instance, without paying the least attention to the degree of westing,* and then making the southing by means of the variables outside the regular breeze. This voyage, which exhi-
* We reached 100° W. longitude.
VOL. II. H
bited such perfect nautical skill, was a source of unbelief at first, and admiration afterwards, both to the port and the capital. To visit Lima, to stay there a week, and then proceed a degree farther north, and return to Valparaiso, in the short space of a month, appeared to all a perfect matter of necromancy
On the 21st May I left the Creole with many regrets: the great kindness I had received on board I contrasted in my mind with the severities and deprivations of passing the Cordillera covered with snow, on foot, and the dangers and difficulties of afterwards crossing the Pampas, beset as they were at the time with marauders of every description.
I arrived at St. Jago the following day.
Departure from St. Jago for Buenos Ayres.—Arrival in the valley of Santa Rosa.—Make Preparations there for crossing the Cordillera on foot by the Pass of Uspallata.—The pass.—Meet with half-starved Travellers and Mules.—Arrive at the summit.—Paramillo.—Arrival at Mendoza.—Politics of the Pampas, their disturbed state.—Departure from Mendoza.—Arrival at La Punta de San Luiz.
A FORTNIGHT previous to my return to St. Jago accounts had been received that the Cordillera was cerrada, or no longer passable for mules; so much rain had fallen in the Plains that it was imagined the snow had subsequently increased considerably in the mountains. The month of June being near, which, although not the coldest month in the year, is more subject to snow-storms than any other, it was judged expedient to lose no time in crossing over to Mendoza. During six months the only pass by which the mountains can be crossed with safety is that Uspallata, in front of Mendoza. The viceroy O'Higgins, in imitation of the Incas, ordered a
number of casuchas or brick huts to be constructed for the safety and convenience of passengers on this route.
The state of the Pampas at this period was such, from the inroads of Indians, that no courier would undertake the journey, and as the communication with Buenos Ayres had been for some time intercepted, my intention of proceeding was scarcely known before I was solicited to carry letters from all the mercantile houses of the city. I made my luggage as light as possible, leaving behind my portmanteau and mattress, and merely carrying a small valeeze on the crupper of the horse. I next engaged a guide to conduct me as far as Mendoza, and considered it better to pay him a sum, and allow him to engage peones (or labouring men) and find provisions and firewood, than lay myself at his mercy, and of many others, when we should arrive at the foot of the mountains.
28th May.—It was not without much regret that I left St. Jago; the society was on a very pleasant footing, and the prospect before me was little inviting. The passage of the Cordillera at this season of the year is attended with considerable danger; and the plains beyond, overrun by Indians and freebooters, are
yet more to be dreaded than the rigours of the pass.
I left St. Jago the afternoon of this day, and was accompanied out of the city by a number of my English friends;—proceeded to Colina, where we slept. The road lay almost entirely over a barren heath, nothing but the mimosa bushes, which prevail over the plain of Maypo. My guide and myself were much alarmed in the night by the foolish conduct of two men sent after me with letters; they gave us every reason to suppose they were robbers.
29th May.—We set off early to Chacabuco, seven leagues, over the same kind of ground as the preceding evening. The Cuesta or hill of Chacabuco, at the termination of the plain, is high, and as the road is winding it takes a long time to surmount. Our journey from the capital had been in a northerly dirction for about twenty-five leagues, but on descending the Cuesta we took an easterly turn into the valley of Santa Rosa at the entrance of the great pass. I learnt that the messenger, sent a week before to bring mules up from Mendoza to the edge of the snow on the eastern side, had engaged assistance here and gone forward, so that we had every reason to expect
to meet him as near the summit on the other side as the quantity of snow would permit.
Nothing can exceed the beauty of this valley; the mountain scenery is magnificent, and its sheltered situation and richness of soil cause it to produce the finest fruits and flowers spontaneously; grapes and figs were in great abundance, the former are chiefly cultivated en treillage: they are pruned about August, and nothing is ever put to their roots; the crops of grapes are observed to vary little. The people of the house were actively employed in making chicha. The process followed was simple: two or three hides were fastened together in the form of a broad sack, and this was suspended between posts; from the bottom of this sack there proceeded a small leathern hose, from which the juice ran in a continued stream. One man stood in the sack up to his middle, and trod the grapes, which another brought in large baskets to him. Each took it in turn to tread, which was certainly the most unpleasant part. The man who was performing this portion of the labour complained severely of the cold, from which he was protected by no article of clothing.
The villa of Santa Rosa is formed of mud
huts, and contains upwards of 2000 inhabitants, who chiefly subsist by the traffic which passes through the valley.
We remained here nearly two days, which were soon consumed in preparing charcoal and hiring peones to carry our provisions, saddles,&c. With great difficulty I made the guide, Mateo, depart from this spot on the evening of the 30th May. As soon as the party, which consisted of the guide, myself, and ten men, had reached the outskirts, we met the wives and ehildren, who began to take a mournful farewell, as if there was little chance of their ever again meeting. The Blessed Virgin was brought out in a box, and we all went on our knees and devoutly kissed her hand. We then mounted our mules, and departed amidst the lamentations of women and children. Proceeding about a league we come to some more huts, and remained for the night. My guide was now occupied in keeping the people together and collecting more provisions for the journey,— chicha, charque or dried meat, fowls, pork and bread, in sufficiency for fourteen days, travellers often being shut up for that time in a casucha; but above all the guide was careful to provide a
large quantity of aji* or Chile pepper, put into small bottle gourds, after being reduced to powder between two stones, and onions and garlick in profusion. The lower class in Chile are very partial to all these vegetables, and to mani (the flour of the underground bean, arachis hypogea), which they consider to be of a stimulating nature, as I have mentioned before.
31st May.—We set off before it was scarcely light, and crossing the river of Villanueva kept for several miles along its banks through woods of considerable thickness. We now made directly for the pass, the entrance to which lay S.E. The wind was excessively cold, and more violent every step we took towards the sierra. By directions from the guide every one left his mule to cut a stout walking stick, with a point at the end, to assist him in overcoming the difficulties of the sierra. Emerging from this wooded valley we reached the guard-house about four o'clock; and after exhibiting passports, we proceeded a league farther, to a spot where there was much firewood, and making a great fire lay down under a rock for the
* This word is considered in the West Indies of Haytian origin.
night. The situation of this valley, which was entirely free, while all around was covered with snow, was very picturesque. Immediately in front of our resting-place an immense waterfall poured down and joined the river, which we kept constantly on our right hand, and which became more shallow and inconsiderable as we advanced. The masses of rock which fell under examination were chiefly granites and detached blocks of its component parts. The wind was extremely cold.
1st June.—Rose at daylight, and collecting the mules continued our journey on the bank of the Rio Blanco. The road was extremely rugged, having been much torn up by the torrents from the heights on each side. We passed some waterfalls, which descended from a great elevation;—crossed the Rio Colorado, and soon afterwards arrived at the first casucha. There are twelve or fourteen of these receptacles, constructed of brick, with a flight of steps to the door, which is high, in order to prevent it being closed by the drift of the snow; the rocks were chiefly traps and porphyries with large masses of granite. Within an English mile of this we reached the edge of the snow, and dismounted. The guide now began to
prepare the ajotas, which is simply a sheepskin cut in a triangular form, and the foot being placed in the centre on the wool the point is brought up and with the other two sides fastened round the leg,—the shoes are previously removed. The pilliones, or sheepskins of the saddle, are then tied round the waist before and behind, in order that the body may be kept dry either when sitting on the snow or falling in it; a bordon or walkingstick is Placed in the hand, and a piece of green silk over the eyes to prevent snow blindness. Thus equipped, the various articles of provisions, clothes, and saddles were distributed among the party. The leading man was appointed by the guide, and we began the appointed by the guide, and we began the march. The mules were led and driven for nearly a league over the snow, (para romper la nieve), but I could not learn for what reason this plan was adopted. The direction lay over the sloping sides of the mountains, and as the snow was frozen hard some idea may be formed of the extreme danger which existed of falling down the precipice. We had not proceeded very far when, rounding a falda,* which rose out of a deep valley of snow, one of the mules
* The sloping side of a mountain.
slipped and was rolled with a thousand turns to the bottom. My sensations at seeing the poor animal precipitated in this manner were those of horror, but succeeded by surprise when I observed that he afterwards got up and walked about. He was left to die a more cruel death than if a rock had projected and he had been dashed to pieces in his descent; there was no way of getting him out. I prevailed on the guide to send back the rest, for I could not discover that they were of any use to us, and being without shoes they ran considerable risk of their lives. Soon after the mules left us to return to the valley, we ascended a very steep mountain where it was necessary for the two first men in the line to make steps with a pointed iron they carried with them. The ajotas and sheepskins, together with the exercise, kept me in a state of perspiration. We passed on the left a flat plain of snow, which was pointed out as the lake of the Inca frozen over. After most dangerous and laborious walking we arrived at seven o'clock at the casucha del Juncal, where it was resolved to pass the night. We lighted the charcoal inside of the casucha, and all creeping together on the floor endeavoured to keep out the cold. We had scarcely laid down when a man arrived
with some mules from the Mendoza side; he had most inconsiderately entered the Cordillera with mules at this period of the year, and had been shut up for five days by a snow-storm near the summit. During the night the three mules which he had brought with him attacked some of the bordones of the party, which had been left outside, and shortened several so much as to render them useless. They were formed of green but extremely hard wood. The poor animals had not eaten for more than five days. The elevation of this casucha above the sea is about 10,501 English feet by barometrical measurement.
2d june.—We commenced the march at an early hour, after equipping ourselves with the ajotas and pillones as on the precedeing day. The labour of the ascent now became very great, and our progress extremely slow. The snow was frozen hard, and the same plan of cutting holes for the feet became requisite. Several of the peones fell a considerable distance and saved themselves by adroitly forcing their staff into the snow. Two of the peones suffered much from a disease called puna*
* In the Quichua tongue puna signifies a cold uninhabited spot among mountains.
which attacked them soon after our departure from the casucha where we had slept. It appeared to me to be a diaphragmatic heaving, attended with great exhaustion and loss of spirits. Those attacked with it lie down, give themselves up, and frequently die before they reach the valley. Large quantities of garlic and onions are considered specifics in this disorder, and so pleasant a remedy is not left untried by the country people; but the most certain cure is to send those attacked from the elevated spot as soom as possible. It is generally remarked that such of the peones as are old and of dirty habits suffer much more from the puna than the rest, and this observation certainly held good with the two I was forced to send back. One of the men was extremely ill, and the other in whose charge he went was a little affected. To this hour I am uncertain whether he reached the valley.
Although the cold was severe, the exercise created a great thirst, and the guide, who knew when we crossed any streams, made holes with great difficulty, and obtained water to drink. We however still put lumps of snow into our mouths, and in spite of the pain which we inflicted on our lips. Our progress to the
cumbre was exceedingly slow, and at two o'clock in the day the casucha where we had slept appeared close under our feet, although we had left it seven hours before. At this time we perceived a party of mules and peones coming over the opposite mountain, and making their way to us as fast as possible. They came up, passed me, who was in advance, and attacked without ceremony the bags of provisions. They had eaten nothing for six days, having been confined close prisoners in a casucha, on account of a snow-storm; the same we had heard of the night before, and we had escaped its effects by only two days. The poor mules were in a sad condition from want of food; but as the weather looked favourable, and the pasture was nearer the summit on the eastern then western side, my guide made an agreement with the owner, and they turned back with us. Soon afterwards we reached the cumbre or summit, which is perhaps a quarter of a mile over. The height of this spot is about 12,585 English feet. On the highest part some pious persons had erected a cross. I cleared a rock of snow, and found it to consist of greenstone. The view on all sides was magnificent. The appearance of
the deep vallies of snow was beyond description. The descent now became extremely rapid, and then nearly level. We passed a casucha, called Las Cuevas, 11,065 English feet above the level of the sea. The guide, actuated by the best motives, made some of the party mount the mules, in order to reach pasturage sooner, although they were doomed to pass another day in a state of starvation. With this view we pressed on as far as possible, and in the darkness of the evening the guide, whom I closely followed, lost the track, and we were several times enveloped in the snow. We at length reached the casucha of the paramillo, where we remained for the night. The thermometer stood at 26° in the hut in the morning, in spite of the warmth of so many bodies, and the fire of the preceding evening.
3d june.—We looked out early this morning, and found the weather clear. The guide forced his bordon into the snow, and, observing, that the hole looked blue, said that there was little chance of a storm. A fire was made outside of the hut of the green wood we had brought with us from Chile, and while it was burning at one end, the mules were eating it at the other. The snow was still very deep,
and the sky of that intense blue colour which it had borne for the last three days. Our track lay by the river of las Cuevas, a small stream, which rises near the Cumbre. We afterwards reached the Inca's bridge, naturally formed of calcareous matter, with long stalactites hanging down from the arch, which was scarcely twenty feet over. I had previously heard of this bridge, and fancied that it passed over an immense torrent, and connected two mountains together, and that without it the pass would be impracticable. I was sadly disappointed, for it is much smaller, and rather on one side of the track and therefore by no means necessary to be passed. The descent was still very gradual, and after passing several casuchas, one of which, called Los Puquios, stands at an elevation of 9,418 English feet,* we reached a spot called at the Punta de las Vacas. We bivouacked at this place, and suffered severely from cold, in spite of two large fires we kept up all night. The thermometer was as low as 22°. The mules were turned out and appeared fresher in the morning.
* This height and the preceding ones are given on the authority of D. Felipe Bauza.—Appendix, No. 23.
4th June.—At la Punta de las Vacas the river of Tupungato joins that of Las Cuevas and forms the river of Mendoza. The mountain of Tupungato appeared just over our heads. Soon after leaving this place, the snow disappeared entirely, and removing the silk from my eyes, I was greatly relieved and better able to look about. Our journey through the whole of this day was either close to the edge of the Mendoza river, or mounting we passed along the ledge of the ravine which it had torn up. These spots (laderas) are justly considered the most dangerous parts in the route. They are scarcely wide enough for a loaded mule to pass, and many have fallen over into the torrent which rushes along below. Sometimes large masses of rock detach themselves from above and crush the unhappy passenger. An immense mass of granite was pointed out to me which covered the remains of two Mendozinos, and numberless are the crosses erected in commemoration of such accidents. It is in such places that the good qualities of mules are most apparent: on coming to the entrance, the first mule, called vaciano, or guide, goes on before to see if there is any other troop
VOL. II. I
approaching; and if there is, he returns, and keeps his own back until the other has passed; and if there is the least noise overhead of falling pebbles, the whole troop springs at once forward to avoid the impending danger. In a mountainous country the virtues of these animals certainly predominate.
We passed immense blocks of porphyry, clay-slate, granite, sienite, and flesh-coloured feldspar, and crossed many streams running down into the river of Mendoza. We now began to get free from the loftier ranges of the Cordillera, and proceeded on a plain covered with bushes. At nine o'clock at night we arrived at Uspallata, after having spent seventeen hours on the mules, who were scarcely more fatigued than ourselves. The people of the hut prepared us a supper of the flesh of the guanaco, which seemed to me as good as mutton.
Uspallata was once celebrated for its silver mines, but they haye been long abandoned. I was informed that large masses of scoriæ existed here, but whether they were of volcanic origin, or, what is more likely, proceeding from the operations of miners, I had no opportunity of judging.
5th June.—Departing early we soon reached
the paramillo or entrance. The wind was high and piercingly cold; little vegetation was perceptible. I observed some greyish limestone in hoizontal strata, and crossed many vallies covered with a coarse grass. I noticed some carbonate of soda on the ground. It may probably proceed from the decomposition of granites containing cleavelandite. We arrived at last at the eastern entrance into the Cordillera. The valley is narrowed to thirty feet across, and the rock on each side is at least two hundred. The appearance of this natural gateway is very imposing. The wind rushed through it with great violence. At night we reached Villavicencio. During this day's journey we saw great numbers of the guanaco. They come in parties of five or six, and then galloped away. I had previously seen many of them, both in Chile and Buenos Ayres, where some individuals keep them as rarities. They are taken by persons going in numbers, with lines covered with feathers, bells, and pieces of glass, driving them into a small inclosure. They leave the mountains as soon as the first snow falls, and retire to the plains and vallies, where the winter is less rigorous. When irritated they eject a very acrid saliva.
Some gentlemen in Buenos Ayres were forced to get rid of them, on account of their constantly attacking the females of the family. The wool of this animal is much esteemed, although it is inferior to that of the other varieties, as the vicua and llama. The guanaco is not used as a beast of burthen.
The wind was extremely high all night, rushing down from the Cordillera, and very cold.
6th june.— We mounted our mules before it was well light, and descended rapidly towards Mendoza. The wind was such that the mules could scarcely keep their feet, and, in spite of every precaution, some of the peones lost their hats; but as we descended rapidly, the wind became less boisterous and troublesome. At length we reached the plain, and began to emerge from the mountains. Our track at first lay over rounded pebbles, but we soon left them, and the latter part of the journey we travelled over a fine brown clay, which the wind rendered at times very troublesome. The jarillo bushes, of which I have before spoken, and the plant like lavender, again made their appearance; and after passing a low range of hills we obtained a view of the
steeples of Mendoza, and finally entered that town about twelve o'clock.
I had thus completed my journey across the Cordillera in the short space of nine days, a very unusual occurrence at this period of the year. I had not experienced a single snow storm, and had nothing personally to complain of but fatigue. which soon passed away. I regretted the loss of the mule; and I had no opportunity of ascertaining whether the man I was forced to send back to the valley, empunado, recovered his health*.
The accounts given me at Mendoza were very discouraging. The town was in considerable agitation from the near approach of the Carrera force, which still hovered about the Pampas. The Orientales, under Ramirez, were also in the field; and both parties were violent in their hatred to the Mendozinos. The only hope of the latter seemed placed in the army of Lopez, the Governor of Santa Fé, and in their own force, which had just sallied forth. The Cordovese, it was known, were blocked up by Carrera, who had threatened their capital more then once. The force of
* Appendix, No. 24
the latter was entirely composed of cavalry; but in these plains such a description of troops is of more use than three times the number of infantry, as it was proved in this instance. All these different armies, with the addition of those of La punta and San Juan, covered the plains, and allowed no one to pass for fear of giving information. I was assured by my friends, that it was impossible to reach the Atlantic side, and that if I attempted it I should certainly be plundered, and perhaps murdered, or fall in with a routed army, which they described, and I believe truly enough, to be the most dangerous to meet; that I should be caught by the Indians; and that if I escaped these multifarious dangers, I should find no horses to carry me on. Being, however, extremely anxious to proceed, and having made myself tolerably acquainted with the routes in the Pampas, owing to my former journey, I determined not to be detained at this spot; at the same time I thought, as I was the bearer of some despatches, that it would be more discreet not to mention which route I should pursue, farther than that I should take the accustomed road to Buenos Ayres. When, therefore, I engaged a guide,
strongly recommended to me by D. Manuel Valenzuela, I stipulated that he should proceed wherever I might direct, and that in fact he was to be guided by me. He was a very decent fellow, of the name of Davila, and very superior in manners either to my old friend Chiclana, or my later Cordillera guide, Mateo Laso. On account of the difficulties of the journey, I was obliged to pay him highly; and it was only the consideration of this, and the persuasions of D. Manuel, to whom his family were under obligations, which prevailed upon Madame Davila to allow her husband to set off on such a dangerous enterprize.
During my absence, few events of consequence had happened in Mendoza. I found the same man at the head of the government, and using his intellects to keep the discontents which were rising on every side, from bursting out into open rebellion, and sending him to seek his fortune elsewhere. The stagnation in trade, owing to the communication with Buenos Ayres being cut off, contributed not a little to this state of things. Various measures were in agitation; nay, a treaty between Mendoza and some of the opposing chiefs, abandoning thereby the coalition she
had formed with the provinces of San Juan, La Punta, and Cordova, was thought of, to put a stop to so great an evil. The negotiation was entrusted to a priest, with whom I was slightly acquainted; he was fully aware of the importance of his mission, and acted as cautiously as any man who would have endeavoured to break the coalition between the allied sovereigns in the late continental war. The basis of the negotiation was this: that the Mendozinos would take their force, amounting to 400 men, out of the field, under some pretext or other, if Carrera would permit their convoys of mules to pass unmolested to Buenos Ayres: but it did not succeed, owing, as I learnt afterwards, to the rancour of Carrera against the Mendozinos, whom he termed the gentlemen executioners of his brothers. Although I was deep in the politics of these petty states, and although I passed some days at the head quarters of several of the opposing parties, I could never learn the cause of this grand dispute, which drew forth so many forces, and firmly believe they were not themselves aware of the origin. The love of fighting, and the love of plunder, seemed the only motives by which they were actuated.
The proximity of such large masses of snow, appeared to throw a great chill over the vegetation of Mendoza. It bore a wintry appearance, and the bare stems of the vines, or the yellow leaves which were left, at once showed me that the season had changed since my former visit. Although the appearance of the place had not of course improved, I still regretted the impossibility of remaining any time. The pressing entreaties of several families, who were so obliging as to recollect me, and the uncomfortable prospect before me, added to my disinclination to proceed.
Having procured every article which I thought might be of service to me, such as yerba, sugar, tobacco, and a few trinkets, in the two days I remained at Mendoza, I left that city on the 8th June with Davila, who was accompanied for a short distance by his brother. As we quitted the city, we called at his house in the suburb, and witnessed the lamentation of his wife and children, who thought he would never return. While I was seated waiting for him, he came out and in their presence offered up a vow of four rials(about 2s. 3d. English) to our Lady of Lujan,
if he arrived safely at Buenos Ayres. I would have given her ladyship ten times as much with pleasure, for the same success; but not to appear too profuse, I made a vow to give eight rials, which these simple people heard with great satisfaction, and they expressed their conviction that Davila could meet with no harm in my company. This vow of mine was often told on the road by the guide, and had on several occasions a very good effect. With the benedictions of all parties, we set off; and what with the horse exercise, and a little raillery on my part, Davila got up his spirits, and soon forgot his wife and children. After being so long accustomed to the shaking and feverish motion of a mule, and to his stiffness of head, I was quite delighted with the elasticity and movement of the horse. If there be such a place as purgatory, and travelling in it, there can be no doubt that the modes of conveyance are mules by land, and ten gun brigs by sea. Taking the direct road to the punta de S. Luiz, we slept nat Retamo, a distance of twelve league.
9th June.—This morning we continued our journey early, and arrived about eleven o'clock at Rodeo de Chacon, where I was most kindly
received by the people of the house, to whose civility I had been so much indebted on my former visit. The daughter of the postmaster, Juana, a very superior person, reproached me gently, for not keeping my word with respect to some combs I had promised to send her from Chile; but when I expressed my sorrow and anger that my late villainous guide had carried them omn instead of leaving them with her, she was perfectly satisfied; and in order to make her assured of this, (which was perfectly true,) I gave her some trinkets I had brought with me. She made me ride on her own horse to the next stage, a distance of six leagues; and when I took leave, so far flattered my vanity as to look very sorry. She had previously used her endeavours to persuade me not to go forward, and painted in lively colours the treatment I should meet with if I fell into the hands of the Indians. proceeding onwards, we reached Pirgua, where we determined to sleep, having completed thirty-nine leagues in the course of the day.
10th June.—Rising very early, we rode the next morning very hard to Chilchitas. The weather was fine, but chilly in the early part
of the day. The jarrillo bushes, which I had observed down the course of the Andesa, were still visible now and then, although we had left the mountains so far in the rear. The grounds near the post-houses were undergoing the process of irrigation previous to the seed time. The next post we arrived at was the Coral de Cuero, where I was detained a considerable time for horses, and had much conversation with the women. They informed me, that the small-pox and vaccination were equally unknown, and that they lose many young children from severe colds; that few women had more than three years each. which they generally nursed three years each. This communicativeness was entirely produced by a handful of yerba; for I have already mentioned that the people are not fond of answering questions. At length procuring horses, I proceeded forward to the Desaguadero, where I found the men all absent from home. They had proceeded upwards of ten leagues to obtain water, all this part of the country being devoid of it; nothing but salt streams running through it. After waiting two hours, the men made their appearance; and the horses being driven into
the coral, we selected six, and proceeded on our journey. The day was excessively hot, and the track let through low mimosas, which afforded no shelter from the sun. As we had to perform a post of upwards of fifty miles, we were obliged to travel gently, and drive three horses before us half the distance. The consequence of this slow travelling was excessive fatigue; and if the sun had not descended, and the evening become cooler, I do not think we should have accomplished the undertaking. About half-past eight o'clock, we came to the lines of the Mendoza force, which had left eight days before us; and there found an old woman who acted the part of a suttler, and furnished us with some bread and brandy, which were most acceptable, as we had not eaten since the morning. After this we proceeded with more spirit; and the moon geting up, I had the gratification of observing the Salt Lake of the Beberero, the light glittering on the salt crystals with great splendour. We shortly afterwards came to the post-house of La Laguna de Chorillo, being escorted there in fact by a party of the Mendoza dragoons, who considered it their duty to take us before the Commandant. On entering the house, I
found the Colonel, with his officers, in the middle of supper. He was exceedingly polite, and gave me a seat at the head of the table, between himself and the chaplain, a young Padre of eighteen or twenty, and who combined a strange boyishness of disposition with the appearance of sanctity which he assumed. The favourite dish, carne com cuero, was on the table. The roast beef is so expensive, on account of a part of the hide being enveloped round it while dressing, that it is only met with at the first tables. The padre amused himself with keeping my cup full of wine from a goatskin under the table, and appeared to enjoy a little himself; and perhaps in part for my amusement, the Colonel submitted to him sundry difficult ecclesiastical questions, with becoming gravity, which were answered by the friar in the same tone. By this time I found the horses ready, and as the night was remarkably fine, I took my leave, and set off seven short leagues to La Punta, thinking I should be able to leave it before the Contingent come up; and moreover I was anxious to learn the state of the country beyond it, and what chance I had of being able to pursue a direct course to the Rio de la Plata. At
half-past eleven o'clock we reached the post-house of La Punta, and were obliged to knock some time at the gate before we could obtain admittance.
Map of the Country between Buenos Ayres and the Pacific Ocean, with a Specification of the different Geological Formations.
Departure from La Punta de san Luiz.—Head-Quarters of the Forces of La Punta.—Proceed towards Cordova.—Stay at Luyaba.—Cross the Sierra de Cordova.—Arrive at Cordova.—The former College of the Jesuits.—El Pizon.—Departure.—Traverse the Guaycaru Territories by night.—Head-Quarters of Lopez, the Governor of santa Fé.—Ramirez.—proceed towards Buenos Ayres.—Reach the parana.—senonra Carrera.—Arrival in Buenos Ayres.—Sail on board a Brig bound to Rio de Janeiro.
THE morning after my arrival at La Punta de San Luiz I waited on the governor and delivered letters to him. He thought I could not possibly proceed onwards to Buenos Ayres, although he was not well informed of the positions of the armies. He advised me, however, proceed to the head-quarters of the Puntana force, and gave me a letter of introduction to the commandant. All he appeared to know with certainty was, that a party of the Indians were within a few leagues of the head-quarters, and that as soon as the Mendoza force arrived, something decisive would be attempted. I
then returned to the post-house, and got my saddle, saddle-bags; &c. examined in every part in order to prevent or disasters hereafter.
Since my former visit, the town had been taken and sacked by the Indians, and although they kept possession of it for only a short time they left many marks of their talents for destruction. The inhabitants took refuge in the neighbouring mountains, which I had before traversed in the route from Estansuela.
The postmaster, in whose house I remained, was blessed with five daughters, all very good looking, and of whom, if I might judge from the great care and attention he bestowed on them, and a large portion of which I think they would have dispensed with, he had not a very favourable opinion. He read prayers to them at nine o'clock in the evening, after supper, and then escorted them to their sleeping apartment in the yard, next to his own, and locking them in put the key into his pocket. In the morning he knocked loudly at their door, and a short time after opened it and conducted them into the common apartment to morning prayers. He paid me great
VOL. II K
attention, and was always at my elbow ready to perform any thing I might require.
12th june.—At day-light I left this village for the Rio Quinto, twelve long leagues. I have before mentioned the beautiful situation of La Punta. The direction of the river is about due south, the stream rapid, and the bed full of pebbles, chiefly of quartz. Obtaining fresh horses, we proceeded towards the Morro* de San josé. twelve leagues farther;—after crossing a very extensive heath we came in sight of a long low sierra, extending south, from the south-east point of the Morro, which from its great height was visible for several leagues. We then passed between immense blocks of porphyritic granite, which had come down from the sierra, and afterwards over beds of white quartz rock, and through mimosa woods and long ravines to the post-house of the Morro; quite drenched with rain and as no horses were to be found, I was forced to remain the night. The cura or rector of this spot paid me a visit, and took me home with him to supper. His house reminded me forcibly of some of the missionary accounts: it consisted
* Morro signifies a round isolated hill.
of one room, with an earthen floor, a roof covered with grass, and a door formed of a hide. The only furniture it could boast was a hide bedstead, two stools, and a table, which having lost two of its legs was supported by the wall; a small copper pan, a drinking horn and missal were visible on a shelf. The supper was excellent and was brought in by two pretty children from a neighbouring hut. The allowance of this amiable man seemed more to consist in the liberality and attachment of his flock than in any stipulated agreement. He seemed contented and happy, and after graduating at Cordova, had taken the charge of this spot many years since. He informed me that every thing was done for him by his parishioners: one old woman brought him water for mattés in the morning, one family dressed his dinner and sent it, another his supper, and that he always received in presents the best pieces of meat, and quantities of the best maize or wheat; that in quiet times he found the muledrivers vying with each other in leaving him a little yerba, wine, and brandy. While I was collecting from him all the information and news of the Pampas, we were interrupted by a man who asked me to carry some money to
Buenos Ayres for him. I at first refused, telling him that I should certainly be robbed; however he was so pressing, and assuring me thet his wife, for whom he destined the supply, would otherwise starve, I was prevailed upon and was so fortunate as to deliver it safely. The cold after the rain was so severe that I slept little.
13th June.—We obtained horses this morning and proceeded towards Portezuelo, seven long leagues. We kept the Morro on our left hand and the Sierra de portezuelo in sight infront;—the ground was very irregular. We crossed over several heights, which exhibited whitish coloured mica-slate with much quartz rock. At Portezuelo, which is a prettily situated spot surrounded by rocks, I procured fresh horses, and with an extra guide, took the road to the Punilla, distant five leagues, in a south easterly direction, where the head-quarters of the Puntana force were then posted. The colonel commandante, Dominguez, occupied a large house, which seemed to have once been a barn, and after passing through the groups of soldiers, who shewed little appearance of discipline and still less uniformity of dress, I was presented to the colonel, who was seated at a
large table surrounded by several men, whom, I presumed were, from this circumstance, officers, and who appeared in the midst of a council of war. After presenting my letters from the governor of La Punta, I examined the countenances of the officers, and should have conceived from the general depression of spirits which appeared marked on their countenances, that either the Indians or some over-whelming force were at hand.—"Well, seor Caballero," said the commander, at last, "you wish to proceed to Buenos Ayres?" " Yes, general," I replied, "and by the shortest road too, and I must be indebted to you for the means." " You cannot possibly go forward; where will you go? if you proceed to Carrera, he cannot protect you, you will be robbed at his head-quarters; the Indians are near, in an hour you will be desnudo como nacib." The more I observed him anxious to prevent me from pursuing a direct course, the more I contested the point, and told him I had nothing to fear. He dreaded, in fact, that I should carry information of the strength of the troops and other particulars to the enemy, and to avoid this I thought it likely he would take some pains to put me on another and safer route, and it fell out as I expected.
At this time some refreshment was brought in, and I had then, by talking of other matters, an opportunity of inclining the whole party to my favour by praising the admirable discipline and appearance of the troops (little aware of what was going on at the moment outside); and, after mentioning what European troops I had seen under similar circumstances, giving of course the advantages in every way to those by whom I was more immediately surrounded, inquired whether the general had not held rank in Spain, knowing all the time that he was a good honest proprietor near the Punta, who now for the first time belted the sword in actual war. At this moment there was an uproar at the door, and prisoners were announced. They consisted of five good-looking Pampa Indians, whose bold eyes roamed round the apartments while the interpreter was receiving his orders. After a few questions respecting Carrera and the force, and disposal of his troops, they received a long harangue, in the style of Demosthenes, from the general, of which they understood not a word, and were then ordered into strict confinement. Whether these Indians had been fresh taken, or captured some time before, and now brought forward for my edifi-
cation, and to convince me of the skill of the commander and the valour of his troops, I know not, but the circumstance was suspicious. I then gave General Dominguez an account of the Mendoza force, and by a little exaggeration of its strength, raised the spirits of my listeners. To close the conference, however, I agreed to deviate from the direct road (which in fact it was impossible to pursue) and strike due north towards the west slope of the Sierra de Cordova, and, keeping those mountains between me and the Indians, afterwards pursue the course circumstances should point out. It was arranged that I should pass the night at La Guardia, a chacra belonging to the commandant. After taking my leave of him, I left the room in company with his brother, who was to proceed as far as La Guardia with me, and provide me with horses the following morning. On rejoining my guides and horses, I found that they had had the greatest difficulty in saving my saddle and effects from the rapaciousness of the soldiers; but my stock of brandy, which filled two bullocks' horns, had entirely disappeared. We reached La Guardia at nightfall, a distance of four leagues.
14th June.—Having excellent horeses provided for us, our friend from head-quarters made me a present of a small cheese, and left us. We continued our journey in a N. Westerly direction, over high ground, and nearly made the tour of the Morro. We came, at length, close under the sierra, and pursued a track which led to Estansuela. Amidst the mimosa bushes large masses of granite were lying in every direction. I then fell in with a patrol, under the command of D. Julian Martines, who very civilly gave me some advice as to the proper road to take. He strongly recommended proceeding to the house of a certain justice of peace, who would furnish me with guides across the mountains to the city of Cordova. Taking my leave of him, within half an hour afterwards I found myself in the house of my old friend, D. Pedro Mojica. The joy of this gentleman to see me was unfeigned, and, detaining me to dinner, and giving me an account of the death of General Marcó, which had happened a short time previously, he concluded by coinciding fully in the idea of D. Julian, and promised to furnish me with good horses and a guide to Luyaba, the house of the justice, making me
promise to visit his wife, who resided in Cordova. I left his hospitable abode in the afternoon. The track which I followed was close under the sierra, and nearly in a northerly direction, winding through trees of considerable size, mostly algarobas and algarobillas, crossing many little streams pouring down from the mountains, and passing occasionally large blocks of reddish granite. We arrived at Caada de Tala, a distance of five short leagues, where we determined to spend the night. When we had galloped into the village, we went from house to house without finding a single inhabitant, but seated ourselves down in one belonging to a friend of my guide. While he was occupied about the horses, an old woman made her appearance, and, fortunately recognizing him, laughed heartily, and said that we had been taken for the Indians. She then gave a call, and many women, and children made their appearance, and the looms were again taken in hand. In all the houses I had entered for the last day, I found the people engaged in this occupation. I observed that all the pastures had been freshly burnt, and understood that, for the sake of manure, they were always set fire to
in the autumn. The maize, which was of two sorts, yellow and white, was just housed. It forms the chief article of subsistence all over the province of Cordova, which I had now entered. They make from it a dish called maizamora,* by simply bruising it with a little water, by which it is deprived of the husks, and then by long continued boiling. The year being abundant, the price of the best maize was twelve reals per fanega. Wheat was considerably dearer. After I had laid down to sleep, I was disturbed by a patrol, under the command of an alferes, who took a long half hour to read my passport, but in the end expressed himself perfectly satisfied.
15th June.—I continued my journey at dawn of day, through thick woods of jarrillo and mimosas with a small leaf. I kept the whole of the morning closely under the sierra, whose sloping sides partook in a measure of the vegetation which surrounded me. The views at every step I advanced were truly magnificent, and the many waterfalls which first glistened on the side of the mountain and then rolled under my feet, rendered the vege-
* The canjica of the Brazilians.
tation luxuriant, and in every way increased the beauty of the scene.—Large masses of quartz and mica-slate lay strewed in the beds of the torrents. This beautiful valley, between the two ranges of the Cordovese and San Juan mountains, which, excepting in the depth of winter and in the more elevated parts, are free from snow, is rather more thickly peopled than the other parts of the country. We passed several villages with the roofs of the houses covered with maize to dry. At a spot called Piedra Blanca the cura sprung out of his house and threw himself before me in the path, and said I must alight and breakfast with him. He was a man of a very obliging disposition, and seemed to receive great attention from his flock; his stock of books was not quite so limited as that of the cura of the Morro, but it contained nothing interesting. Pursuing my journey, I reached at length the chacra of Luyaba, the residence of the justice, a distance of thirty leagues from Estansuela. D. Eusebio de Cabral received me with great kindness, and asked many questions about D. Pedro Mojica, to whom he did not seem attached on account of his being an old Spaniard. I was of course very guarded in my replies. He
made me take a seat at the dinner table; among other dishes there was one which seemed a favourite in the family—small slices of cheese mixed up with the treacle of grapes. My host was a man of about fifty, and from several little circumstances I soon discovered his weaker side. He complained vehemently of a chazqui* who had passed his door without calling, without exhibiting his passport, &c. to him, a juez; but setting aside this little vanity, which in such a situation was perfectly excusable, he was a kind hearted well dispositioned man; he promised to furnish me with a guide, and horses and mules to reach Cordova, which might be accomplished, he said, in two days; but he considered it impossible for me to proceed until the following day.
16th June.—The family of the judge consisted of a wife, three daughters, and two sons. The lady of the house was a very superior motherly woman, and extremely kind to me. The daughters were rather prepossessing in their appearance, but remarkably shy, and whenever I approached their looms, which in
* This is another Qquichua word, and strictly means a Foot Messenger, but it is now indiscriminately used for any Messenger bearing Letters.
this delightful climate stand under the shade of the trees, they seemed ill at their ease, and little inclined to converse. I attributed this in part to their never having left their native valley, and from never having heard of a foreigner before; still it was unaccountable, and so very unlike the women of these countries. At dinner, however, the whole business was explained, by the eldest, who put on a very serious face, asking me whether I believed there was a God, and while I reassured her on this point the eyes of the whole party were fixed on me. From that moment the young ladies were far less reserved, and when I expressed a desire to take away with me a large fresada or blanket, which was just on the point of being finished, and that, as their workmanship, I should feel too happy to pay whatever should be required, I was most completely taken into favour. The young men had a great wish to leave the valley, and I had no small pleasure in describing to them some of the wonders of other countries; but I told them that in this beautiful and sequestered sport, endowed with a climate without its equal, it appeared to me happiness had fixed her abode. As at present their great desire seemed to be.
to Visit Cordova; I offered to take them there in safety; a proposition with which they were delighted, bat their father declined the offer, alleging that the city was in too disordered a state at the moment to think of such a thing.
The females, who, I have already stated, are entirely occupied in various manufacutures of ponchos, fresadas, and other coarse cloths, dye the wool themselves, and, I can add, most durably. The yellow colour is produced by the roots of the romeiro, or rosemary, and the blue by anil or indigo; the red is obtained from annatto. The ink and all the black dyes are produced by bruising the pods of the algorabilla, and mixing them with warm water and native sulphate of iron, which is carried a great distance as an article of trade; it is termed caparrosa, whence perhaps our copperas is derived. The algoraba, which is, I believe, an acacia, is a tree of great value, particularly the algaroba blanca. The pods are made by fermentation into a kind of chicha or drink, and it serves as well to feed cattle when the maize crop is deficient.
Some few persons are afflicted with cotas or wens in this valley; but fortunately there are no evils without remedies, and the waters of a cer-
tain small stream were considered to possess a sovereign specific for the complaint; another appeared to be bruising a small spotted viper and applying it to the spot. An idea would seem to prevail, therefore, in all countries, that the application of offensive objects to the swelling had a favourable effect.
I took leave of this kind family after supper, as I intended to leave very early in the morning; the guide, with mules and horses, being in a state of readiness.
17th June.—I rose at three o'clock, and soon completed my preparations. The justice and his sons were up to see me depart, and I was invited by the ladies to enter their rooms and exchange another adios. I left Luyaba by at bright moonlight, with a careful old man as a guide, and five or six mules and horses for Davila and myself to exchange. We followed a track which led to the sierra through a thick wood; the trees became as we approached it very large and luxuriant. We continued for some time by the side of a considerable mountain stream, the banks and bed of which were strewed with masses of red granite. We now ascended at every step through large blocks of granite and gneiss, by a winding and most
rugged path, until we reached the very foot of the sierra, which appeared like a lofty wall above our heads. We now left our horses, and mounting the mules followed a very narrow and steep, but otherwise safe, path to the summit, which we gained in two hours. We mounted fresh horses at this point and began to cross the ridge; it was covered with grass, but entirely devoid of trees; here and there in the more sheltered situations, patches of snow were visible. We next arrived at the remains of some houses built by the Indians, as my guide assured me, but they were nothing but rude masses of gneiss, which the hand of nature had placed in a singular manner;—we then passed a spot, marked by a cross, where an unhappy traveller had been murdered by his two guides. After committing the deed they descended into the valley, and said they had been attacked by banditti, who had murdered their master, and that they alone had escaped. They were convicted afterwards on strong evidence, and shot. My new guide shortly after drew forth some figs, and Davila the cheese which I had accepted from the brother of general Dominguez, which formed our dinner. We had now arrived at the eastern extremity
of the plateaux, and began the descent, which in, some places was excessively abrupt and rapid. The descent lasted until sunset. On our left we passed some immense corales, or cattle-pens, which had belonged to the Jesuits; they were built of firmly cemented stone work, which will resist the elements for many years. The houses near them were in ruins. This society often possessed in these mountains alone, a hundred thousand head of sheep and cattle. About two leagues farther on we came to some habitations, and bought a little beef, and at dust arriving at a valley where there was much pasture for the cattle, and a stream, and as for the last league or two the animals were so tired we could scarcely get them on, we determined to pass the night there. I looked about the bank of the river called San Miguel, and finding part of a tree left there by the torrent, made a fire, officiated as cook, and we all laid down to sleep. The night was so severely cold, and a hoar frost so heavy, that it penetrated the coverings: it was impossible to sleep.
18th June.—Rising at one o'clock, the fire was lighted again, and we vainly endeavoured to get rid of the chill by means of it and cups of warm yerba. We determined therefore to
VOL. II. L
collect the cattle and proceed onwards, and we mounted about three o'clock. After fording several streams, and descending at every step, we entered the valley of the Yrriartes. This beautiful spot is about nine miles long, and is watered by the river of the same name. Towards its easterly extremity it contracts to a point, and it was here cut through by the Jesuits for the convenience of access, a work of no trifling extent. In the centre the village is built, and its magnificent church completes a view which is seldom met with even in these countries. The population seemed of some extent. I proceeded to one of the houses, and was very hospitably received. In return I left with the woman of the house and her grandmother all the sugar and yerba I was possessed of. The information I obtained here respecting the situation of the country about Cordova was rather disheartening. The people told us that Carrera and the Indians had ravaged all the country between them and the city, and that they had proceeded at last to an attack, in which, they believed, they had been unsuccessful. Where they had since gone to they were not aware. This intelligence subsequently proved pretty
correct. I was extremely anxious to proceed, and, departing from the valley by the excavation already mentioned, descended, through much wood, to the banks of a beautiful mountain stream. The track next wound through the hills, which were covered with a thick grass, and at length we descried the Rio Amisicate, and the small village of the same name, which was still smoking, having been set on fire five days before by the Indians. I learnt here that the road was safe to Cordova, a distance of nine leagues. After fording the river we changed horses and proceeded with all speed over a level country, and, for the most part, through uninhabited woods, towards Cordova. Every house or hut we passed was in ruins, and the mischief done by these marauders will not be soon forgotten or remedied. The animals were excessively tired, and, to obtain a moments's respite, ran on one side into the woods, by which much time was lost, and, after night set in, this became more annoying and tedious. My horse fell under me three times, and I thought that either we had missed the road, or that Cordova had sunk into the ground. My guides were so overcome with fatigue that I was obliged to use my authority and quarrel
with them to prevent their sleeping, when within two leagues of the city. At last, at the moment when even I had began to imagine we should never reach Cordova, a church bell distinctly struck nine o'clock; but as I could perceive neither church nor houses, I conceived I was mistaken, until a few feet of descent brought me into a well paved street, with houses on both sides, verifying completely the description of the guide, that Cordova was built, en un pozo, in a well. I proceeded directly to the government house, to pay my compliments to the governor, deliver some letters to him, and comply with the prescribed regulations at the time. I passed through ranks of military to the great square, which was full of cannon, and the accesses defended by ditches. The troops were mostly blacks. I could not help being amused in thinking that I had been able to enter the town unperceived with twenty horses and mules. I learned here that all communication with Buenos Ayres by the direct route was cut off, and I retired to sleep, thinking what course I should pursue.
19th June.—I occupied myself the early part of this morning in walking about, and
examining the situation of the city. The ground on three sides is much higher than the roofs of the houses, and on the other side the lofty natural wall dips down to the level of the small river Primero, from the waters of which it appears at various times to have suffered considerable damage. It would appear as if the site had heen at one time covered by a lake which had burst the natural bank on the side next the river. The governor, Cabrera, who founded this city about the year 1573, thought, perhaps, that such a situation would offer greater obstacles to the attacks of the various tribes of Indians, more powerful at that period than the European intruders.
The streets are regularly laid out, and the houses built of brick are higher than the usual style of Spanish towns; most of them are adorned with balconies. The great square has one side covered with a neat cabildo, and the other with a cathedral. There are fourteen other churches. The population is estimated at 14,000.
As soon as it was visiting time, I proceeded to the government house, and had a long interview with the governor Bedoya, who was
extremely anxious to know the state of affairs in Peru and Chile. Upon making enquiries about D. Ambrosio Funes, the contador Lozano offered to point out his house to me. When I was in Buenos Ayres, his brother, the Dean Funes, pressed a letter of introduction upon me, saying that I might perhaps visit Cordova, the beauties of which he greatly extolled. With no idea of visiting that city I accepted his offer, with the view of possessing his autograph, but I now found the letter of great service. D. Ambrosio was a very handsome old man, better looking, but still extremely like the dean. Natives of this city, they early declared their attachment to the patriotic cause, and, during the course of the revolution, have never ceased to dedicate their talents to the shrine of liberty and independence, and their excellent dispositions towards moderating the severities of the various chiefs, and towards lessening the revolutionary. calamites which assailed all parties of the state. D. Ambrosio was at this period treasurer, but he had twice filled the office of governor, and was universally esteemed. We had much conversation together. He said that hitherto Cordova had been a decided
loser by the revolution, and he painted in vivid colours the changes for the worse which had occurred in the city. The mule trade, which was the chief means of subsistence, entirely destroyed; and the university, which formerly received hundreds of youths from all parts, was now scarcely deserving of the name. literary man himself, he seemed to lament deeply the want of information and science in the city. He stated that the greatest portion of the papers and books of the Jesuits, had been carried off to Buenos Ayres, and the remainder had been taken possession of by the Franciscans, who were charged with the care of public instruction. After mentioning some of the most striking objects to arrest the attention in Cordova, and regretting the shortness of my visit, he begged the contador to dedicate as much time to me as he could, and I took my leave. I next visited a merchant, whom I found placed in arrest a few days before, on account of some suspicions of corresponding with Carrera; and afterwards Lozano shewed me the churches. Built under the eye of the Jesuits, they were all in excellent taste, and the interiors elegantly adorned. Few of the houses could boast of glazed lattices. In the
evening I completed the tour of the town, and returned fatigued to the post-house. While in Buenos Ayres, I was told of a singular phenomenon which, it was said, often occurred in Cordova after the evening had closed, called el pizon.* It is a low stamping noise, which appears to issue from the ground, not in any particular spot, but appears constantly in motion. I listened attentively for a considerable period this evening, but cannot say I heard it. On my return home I put several questions to my landlady, a most intelligent and obliging person, respecting this curious subject. She informed me that she had often listened to it, but that it had not lately occurred.
It seemed to be the custom to welcome the arrival of a stranger with music, for I had two bands playing to me during supper.
20th June.—The first part of this day was spent in returning some visits made me the day before. I next proceeded to the university, which comprised as well the ancient college of the Jesuits. Dr. Bedoya, the rector, received me very politely, and conducted me himself over what may be, in truth,
* Or the paving hammer.
considered the finest remnant of the most distinguished community which ever existed. I traced back in my mind events which had occurred long since; the names of the most celebrated and successful missionaries who had crossed the threshold, and consulted with the Provincial, in the chamber where I sat, the disposal of the force which had brought so many savage nations to reason, and taught them, with the light of the Gospel, those comforts of domestic life to which they had been hitherto strangers. All these had passed away, and of the immense possessions attached to the college, of the numerous flocks and herds, lands and houses, which it possessed, there was scarcely now left a sufficiency to repair the common dilapidations of time. The church is magnificent; rich enough to shew the wealth of the founders, and sufficiently elegant to prove, that men with enlightened minds, even without the assistance of models and designs, can possess a chastened and correct taste. The rooms are conveniently arranged, spacious, and numerous. One of the upper apartments was filled with the most expensive physical apparatus, all rapidly going to decay, and the names and
purposes of which are now unknown to every inhabitant of the city. Another smaller apartment, in the rear of the pile, had been occupied by the printing press, the only one for a century which existed in this part of the world. The press remained concealed in this retreat for many years after the expulsion of the company; but at the revolution, the government of Buenos Ayres obtained possession of it, and degraded it so far as to make that the vehicle of publishing their own foolish decrees and political squabbles, which had hitherto been the means of conveying to the world the knowledge of barbarous tongues, and information procured by the toil and the sickness, and in many instances, the lives of its former enlightened possessors. I have no wish, nor in fact powers, to extenuate the European errors of the Jesuits, but am only desirous of doing justice to their American virtues, which have been underrated and received with ridicule, because they had powerful enemies, and were obliged to be their own historians.
At present there are about a hundred students in the university.
After leaving Dr. Bedoya, I paid a visit to
Doa Rosa, the wife of my friend at Estansuela, Don Pedro Mojica. She was so pleased at hearing of her husband, that she overwhelmed me with kindness, and I had great difficulty in freeing myself from her offer of making her servants wash my linen. This is no uncommon offer, and at once shows the kind and considerate disposition of the females of these provinces.
In the evening, I again went out to the most quiet and unfrequented streets, to listen for el pizon, but was again unsuccessful. That this phenomenon does not occur, must by no means be supposed because I did not hear it. I only remained three nights in Cordova during the winter time, when it is stated to be of more rare occurrence; and it stands, besides, on too good authority; but whether it proceeds from a deception of sound, owing to the circular and basin like form of the site, or whether it arises, as Dobrizhoffer* supposes, from the differences in the temperature of the air confined in the clay fissures, I cannot take upon myself to determine.
21st June.—I rose earlier than usual, to
* Appendix, No. 25.
make preparations for my journey. The direct road to Buenos Ayres being impassable, there was but one way of proceeding, which was to cross the territory of the Guaycarus, a nation half reclaimed by the Jesuits, but who have since relapsed into their former mode of life, and are distinguished above the others by their cruel and barbarous habits. Many persons took some interest to prevail upon me to remain, and not attempt this route; but anxious to proceed, I made up my mind to attempt it, and if I found it impracticable, to return here and wait for a moment of quiet. As several of the deputies of the General Congress had assembled and called upon me, I visited Don T. Barracheria, who came from Santa Fé, and obtained several letters to commandants in that province. My hostess also took the pen in hand for me. After proceeding with the governor and his staff to the cathedral to hear grand mass, as it was the feast of the Corpus Christi, I took leave of all my acquaintances, and followed the route to Ampatacoche, a distance of seven leagues in an easterly direction. When a hundred yards out of the streets, there was not to be seen the least appearance of a city.
The plain was covered with mimosa bushes; and the soil was a reddish clay. I reached the house of Don Fabian Galende, a small proprietor and postmaster.
Whilst conversing on various topics relating to the produce of the soil, we fell upon the subject of tithes. He informed me that the diesmo, or tithe, was not felt by the proprietors; they had always been accustomed to pay it in kind, although, if they chose, they might compound for it; and they considered it no hardship. The canons of the cathedral receive the tithes, or rent them. They send waggons about in the month of February, just after the corn is harvested. They take tithe on colts, cattle, grain and fruit.
The curas, or parochial clergy, are supported by the primicias and surplice fees. The assistant, which they are obliged to have in order to perform the higher ceremonies of the church, is paid by them, like our curates in England. The primicia is half a fanega of wheat or maize, which is paid by every one who has six fanegas, or upwards. All below that quantity are exempt. The maintenance of the clergy would be, therefore, extremely limited if there were many large landed pro-
prietors. The surplice fees are twenty-one dollars for a burial, and twenty-eight for a marriage. When I mentioned the low fees which can be by right demanded by our clergy, D. Fabian said, "Why you must then have marriages every day." If the cura shews the least sign of inattention to his duties, the parishioners are absolved from payment of the primicia. Many of the curas enjoy as much as twelve hundred dollars annually.
22d June.—I left early this morning, taking with me a few lines from D. Fabian to his nephew in Tio, desiring him to afford me any assistance in his power. After quitting his house, we got on the plain, which was for two or three leagues entirely devoid of trees; but as we approached the Rio Segundo, they reappeared in considerable quantities, and of some bulk. Crossing the river, which was not above a hundred yards over, we directly afterwards entered the post-house of Los Ranchos or San Rosario. From this spot we pursued our journey through much wood, and occasionally villages, on the bank of the river, which we re-crossed to Monte Redondo; thence, through more considerable woods, to
the Posta de Rivarola, seven long leagues from Los Ranchos. Finding the proprietor and his family decent people, and that the next post was ten long leagues distant, I determined to remain the night in this spot.
The family consisted of an old man, his wife, and four daughters; the eldest of whom, widow, seemed to arrange all the domestic concerns. I say a widow, although there was so much doubt about the fact, that understanding I could write, she made me address a letter, containing various questions, to her dear departed, to elucidate the matter. When the letter was completed, she entrusted it to Davila to deliver in Buenos Ayres, where her husband was reported to have died. The scene was not unamusing, and I could scarce refrain from smiling, in spite of the tears which flowed down her cheeks.
In the house there were two or three dogs without hair, like the Turkish breed. I had met several of them before, and learned with surprise that they were much used in cases of catarrh or phlegm. Persons afflicted in this way, go to sleep with them lying on their chests, and they say derive the greatest advantage from the heat of their bodies.
In the evening we were all assembled in the house, and the old gentleman shutting the door, drew forth his rosary, (I trembled at the length of it,) and began the prayer; at the termination of it, all joined in the Amen; bead was then passed, and it was repeated, until the rosary was run through. Tired of standing, and hungry, I thought it would never conclude. The daughters told me afterwards, that their father had put on his Lent rosary out of compliment to the stranger.
As a few leagues farther would place me on the edge of the Guaycaru territory, I was advised by the old man to set off as early as possible in the morning, in order that I might reach the fort of Tio before the sun had got up high.
23d June.—In compliance with the advice of the landlord, we got on our horses and departed before three o'clock in the morning. The track led through woods of low mimosas almost the entire way. This circumstance, and the darkness of the morning, and the badness of the horses, made it ten o'clock before we reached El Tio. This fort is surrounded by a deep ditch and stacado, with four small field pieces at the gates. After some little
difficulty, we obtained admittance, and were conducted to the Governor, who examined and signed my passport. I then found out D. Pedro Duque, to whom I had a letter from his uncle. After stating his own incapacity to assist me with horses, he introduced me to an old Gaucho, called Juan José, who, after some persuasion on the part of the other, consented at last to take me as far as the Monte de José Nudo, or Socoro, for the sum of twenty-five dollars, a distance of forty leagues. He said we must travel entirely by night, in order to escape the Indians: he wished to delay a day, but getting him into good humour, he promised to set off that afternoon.
There appeared to be a population of about eight hundred souls in this village. As there was to be a dance in the evening, the men were getting their hair combed and fresh plaited by the women. I had several invitations to attend it, but I thought it more discreet to leave the fort before any Indians hovering about might learn my arrival, and lay in wait for me. The week before they had approached close to the stacado, and driven off many head of cattle. Soon after sunset, Juan José, armed with a gun and sword, Davila, and myself, passed through the gate, and pro-
VOL. II. M
ceeded to a hut belonging to him about a mile distant; here we were joined by two peones or farming servants, in the employ of my conductor, and after collecting twenty horses to ride and drive before, we waited until dusk, and then proceeded at a jog trot towards José Nudo. The fire-arms, of which we had four exclusive of my pistols, were previously put in order. The ground, for the first ten leagues, was extremely irregular, full of biscacho holes, and in places covered with salt efflorescences; —we afterwards pursued our way through grass as high as the horses middle. About midnight we came to a solitary tree, which my old guide was well pleased to see, as it proved that no error had been made in the track. We alighted here for ten minutes, and my guide, drawing out some provisions, furnished the supper. Juan José related many stories of the Indians. Six months before, he was going out to his hut when he heard a moaning in the grass, and proceeding to the spot found a young woman perfectly exhausted, and without clothing. He recognized her immediately, and carried her carefully into Tio. She had been stolen by the Indians, and had made her escape from them with great difficulty, and in a pitiable condition.—"Just under
that bush," said he, "I was attacked by several Indians, who thougth I had few persons with me, but when they sprung out of the grass, we killed five of them and drove off the rest." These stories, true or false, had an evident effect upon poor Davila, who began to think that N. Sa. de Lujan would never be four rials the better for him,—he entirely lost his gana de comer.* I contrived to change the subject.
From a variety of causes, the great nation of Guaycarus, which extended a considerable distance north, has become nearly extinct; they were considered by the Spaniards as their most cruel enemies, and in time the name became a common term for all those tribes who were more barbarous than the rest. The Guaycarus, whose country I was now traversing, maintain a constant state of warfare against the Creoles. So attached are they to a wandering and marauding life, that since the revolution they have willingly joined the armies of any one province on the point of attacking its neighbour. They are tall, good looking men, full of activity and courage, and fight to the last moment. When they lose any of their friends in battle they always return and carry off the bodies. They
* His appetite.
dwell in low huts constructed of hides, which they remove about with great facility, and constantly travel on horseback; they are well mounted. They make inroads in all the Creole possessions, and carry off the women and cattle. Their number is supposed, but upon very uncertain authority, to amount to eight or nine hundred. They speak Castillian, and some attempts have been made to settle them in towns, but hitherto without success.*
24th June.—We kept on our journey through the night as fast as we could, and day-light made its appearance when we had still ten leagues to perform before reaching Socoro. These leagues were very uncomfortable ones; the fresh tracks of the Indians, which had trod down the high rancid grass and showed us that they were not very far distant, the tired state of the horses, together with the effects of eating some bread mixed up with foal's fat, which neither agreed with Davila nor myself, all contributed to render it so. Happily, when the day broke completely, nothing was seen to break the line of the horizon: according to the Spanish expression, we all travelled with our beards on our shoulders. Atlength the long-looked-for wood of José Nudo
* Very detailed accounts of these Indians are given by Azara, De Termeyer, and Dobrizhoffer.
appeared like a black speck on the horizon; when no doubt prevailed about it, for at first the guide thought it moved, our joy was extreme, and about eleven o'clock we approached within a mile, when a detachment of soldiers came down upon us at a full gallop. We discovered them to belong to Santa Fé, and that they formed part of the advanced guard of Lopez, the governor, who was expected to arrive at the Monte that evening. In five minutes after, I entered the large straw-built rancho of D. José Santos Mendez, the commandant; I presented my letter from the Santa Fé deputy, and although both he and his wife, a nice young woman with her first child, were full of preparations for arrival of the governor, they both received me very civilly. He frankly told me that I must give him up every thing I possessed, as he could not answer for the people who surrounded him at that moment: with this I complied of coures. His excellency did not arrive that afternoon. Seeing only one hide catre, or bedstead, in the room, I naturally inquired of the lady whether it was not occupied by her or her mother, but she assured me that she slept in an adjoining hut, and that it was meant for me. After listening
to the conversation of the soldiery, and occasionally taking part in it, I was so fatigued that I soon fell asleep; under other circumstances I doubt whether I should have so soon closed my eyes, for the conversation was entirely about deeds of blood committed in combat, and revenge by the members of the party. I do not remember one who had not killed four of his fellow-creatures one way or other. My fair hostess sat by my side and shuddered.
25th June.—On opening my eyes this morning, I was surprised to find the lady sleeping on the ground by my side. I accused her of telling stories, and she confessed that, seeing me excessively fatigued, and fearing that I might have scruples about taking her bed, she had been led to say that she slept elsewhere. Her delicacy and kindness I can never forget. She protected my breakfast from the soldiery with great care, and with her needle and thread repaired my dress and saddle-bags with great skill.
About nine o'clock the governor, Lopez, made his appearance, and as soon as he was seated in an adjoining hut, I went and paid my compliments to him. I found him sucking brandy and water through a tube, no uncom-
mon way of drinking. He was tall, fairer than usual, and apparently thirty years of age. He had the mark of a dreadful sabre cut over his right eye. After the usual salutation we proceeded to talk of the war and its present appearances; of Buenos Ayres and Cordova; but of Chile and Peru he scarcely knew where they were, and cared little about them. He was extremely frank, told me he knew where Ramirez, the commander of the Orientales, was posted, and added that on Friday he should attack him and cut off his head. In conclusion I begged to know whether I could be so fortunate as to carry his Excellency's despatches to Buenos Ayres? His reply was "Tengo."*
Lopez had been for several years a private in the Santa Fé army before an opportunity occurred of showing his courage and talents for command. He soon rose, however, and whan no higher than a majar, was named by the troops Governor and Captain General. After his elevation to this rank, various disturbances on all sides afforded him the means of still further distinguishing himself; and it is but proper to state that, putting aside a slight
* i. e. I have.
tendency to harshness, he has conducted the affairs of the province with considerable skill. In the year following my interview the Santa Fecinos declared that the usual gradations of military rank were not sufficiently rapid to reward such merit, and they decreed that he be at once named General.
with regard to his threat against Ramirez, he put it into execution. On the Friday after Lopez attacked, beat, and cut off his head, which was successively sent from cordova to Santa Fé and Buenos Ayres. Nobody regretted the death of this last chief—he was a perfect untaught Gaucho, with considerable natural talents. When he marched down against Buenos Ayres, he remained outside the town, and received the visits of many who were desirous of beholding so singular a character. When matters went as he desired, he seemed to possess scarcely sufficient life to utter "Esta muy bien,"—it is all very well; but if thwarted in his schemes, his eyes flashed like a wild cat's, and nothing could restrain him. With Lopez he was for some time united in what appeared the strongest bands of friendship. Conjointly they attacked Buenos Ayres, and were successful; but the latter power, by
dint of great expense, contrived to make them implacable enemies. Ramirez preserved on this occasion the most perfect discipline among his troops; he issued the usual orders against plunder. One of his soldiers took a poncho from a woman who had approached near the head-quarters; Ramirez, observing her distress, inquired the matter, and drew up his whole force to have the soldier recognized. The woman pointed him out, and the poncho was discovered on him. "Friend," said the general, "step out and kneel down;" he obeyed, and was shot by him through the head. His method of securing the prisoners was quite novel, but after the taste of the country: he belted them round the waist and arms with a wet hide, which, contracting extremely as it dried, caused in many instances their death.
To return to the Governor of Santa Fé.—When I heard that his Excellency had a person with him who officiated as secretary, I was quite relieved, fearing that, if he took the pen in hand himself, I should not get forward until the next morning. After remaining quietly for two hours, I began to suspect that either the governor had forgotten his despatch, or intended to send it only the next day. I there-
fore walked up and down before his quarter for two hours, when at last it appeared. One thing I universally remarked in South America, that the people have no idea of time or space. They can neither distinguish one hour from four, nor a quadra from a league.
The commandante now returned me my saddle bags, &c. in safety; and taking leave of his lady and the old Gaucho guide Juan José, I proceeded to Coronda, escorted by a couple of dragoons. Before I left the encampment, two Guaycaru Indians, belonging to a party of forty then accompanying Lopez, rode up along side of me, and endeavoured to pull a blanket from under me, but on making application to my holsters they directly made off. After this, and until I was perfectly free from the stragglers, I kept close between my escort.
It was late in the evening when I arrived at Coronda, distant ten leagues from the Monte; the track led over plains abounding with partridges. We forded one salt river: the huts we passed were surrounded by ditches and stacados and look-out platforms. Coronda was fortified in this manner: it consisted of about one hundred and twenty mud buildings.
26th June.—Having procured horses I left
Coronda, and passing through a thick wood, came down to the bank of the Paraná, where we experienced a dreadful storm of thunder and lightning; we crossed a saltriver, and continued our route to Gomez, five long leagues, through the most luxuriant trefoil, which reached above the knees of the horse. Having obtained fresh horses, we continued our journey over perfectly level ground, and forded the small Rio de las Mongas. My guide caught an armadillo, which, in spite of my intreaties, was soon short of its head. We next saw a stag, which continued to proceed before us to our great inconvenience, being of the strong-scented species. At Carcaraa the postmaster refused horses, in consequence of which I was obliged to proceed two leagues farther, and then wait three hours. We then descended to the river Carcaraa, which is the name the river Terçero takes in this place, and swam our horses over it. It was much swollen with rain. The night came on, and my guide's horse fell with him, but he alighted on his feet, like all the people in these provinces; soon after my horse came down in the gallop as if he had been shot, and kept my foot under him, to the great amusement of the guides. The night set in extremely dark; the guide missed the way; it began to
rain; and we were obliged to trot: all this, combined with the wetness of our garments in fording the river, and a pain in my foot from the fall, formed a tolerable collection of petty miseries. While we talked of making ourselves comfortable in the grass for the night, we heard the bark of dogs, and at nine o'clock entered the post-house of San Lorenzo. I never spent two hours more disagreeably than the preceding. With some little trouble I obtained admittance into the dwelling of a lady whose husband had illtreated and deserted her. She was extremely attentive—examined my foot, applied some brandy to the bruise, and gave me fish for supper. She completed every thing by yielding me up her own bed, which boasted sheets, a luxury I had nearly forgotten. I thought of Mahomet's seventh heaven.
27th June.—This morning I left with my fair hostess the remains of the yerba and sugar bag—she would accept nothing else. Not leaving very early, I did not reach Rosario, five leagues distant, until 11 o'clock. It is an extensive village, with a church, but in no way fortified. I first delivered a letter from the Santa Fé deputy, to the commandant, and then another to the cura D. Pascual Braga: he was extremely kind, wishing me to remain a
week in his house. I consented to stay only until dinner time. Aware that the wife of Carera was living here, I determined to pay her a visit, and while we took yerba together I was quite enchanted with her elegance and appearance. Living a prisoner in this place, I imagined she would be glad to hear of her Chilian relations, with many of whom I was acquainted; or, perhaps, I might be able to take charge of any letter for her. Her servant called upon me afterwards at the cura's, and secretly gave me two letters for Montevideo. Her four infant children were with her. I then returned to the cura's to dinner. He placed me at the head of the table, and put himself on my left hand. The Ayudante, or assistant, sat in front, and the other seats were filled by the sexton and his boy. The dinner consisted of soup, highly seasoned with capsicums, a large dish containing six fowls, and a piece of meat roasted, some boiled pork and sausages, plenty of wheaten bread and red wine. Shortly after dinner I departed for Arroyo Seco. The track led over rich clover pastures, close to the banks of the Paraná. I could just discover the province of Entre Rios on the other side of the river. I afterwards crossed the Arroyo Pavon, and slept at the Caada de Calçada.
28th June.—We proceeded to Ramallo, seven leagues, crossing many streams which pursued a sluggish course to the Paraná, and leaving San Nicholas on the left, we hastened on to Hermanos, five leagues. The banks of the river were covered with flights of birds which appeared to me of the crane kind. After passing San Pedro I left the bank of the river. At this spot, a calcareous rock, with horizontal stratification, showed itself. Thistles now began to appear among the trefoil, which proved to me the proximity of Buenos Ayres. I observed vast numbers of birds. We departed for Arecife, six leagues; for some distance the track was very good, but on descending into a considerable hollow it was a perfect swamp. We first past the river Tala, a deep muddy stream; and shortly afterwards, the river Arecife, which was in such a swollen state, that at first we hesitated at crossing it, but as it was a clear night, and we could discern the opposite bank, we fastened our ponchos and valeezes round our necks to keep them dry, and swam over. We reached Arecife at nine o'clock; it was illuminated brilliantly in honour of San Pedro.
22th June.—Shortly after sunrise Icontinued
my journey, and reached Caada Vellaca. I observed that all the old women ride man fashion, and carry their daughters on pillions behind them. The thistles and clover seemed now to prevail equally. We reached Areco, twelve leagues. On the banks of the Rio Areco, the bones of the mastodon were discovered. Great quantities of birds. The thistles now seemed to predominate. The cattle eat the tender tops. There were very few trees, and those hombues. Early in the afternoon I arrived at Pilar. The post-house is a little to the left of the village.
30th June.—We left early in the morning, and proceeded to the Arroyo de Pinazo, four leagues. We afterwards forded the river, which was deep and dangerous, to Las Conchas, four short leagues: crossed the river of that name, famous for its muscle shells. The banks exhibited horizontal strata, of a brown stalactiform limestone. The cattle and houses now became more frequent, and after proceeding four leagues farther, I had at length the great pleasure of again entering Buenos Ayres. I instantly proceeded to the house of a most excellent man, long established in the
country as a merchant, and delivered my letters to him as well as to the other English houses. The questions put to me by all parties were innumerable; for no communication had been held with the other side for many weeks. The great wonder was, by what route I had arrived. I then called upon some officers of the government, arranged with the captain of an American brig, who was on the point of sailing to Rio de Janeiro, to take me as a passenger, and after dinner went to a tertulia, where I danced until very late.
lst July.—Rose at day-light, and made preparations for going on board. I had afterwards some difficulty about my passport; the governor wished me to delay my embarcation for twenty-four hours, which I replied I had no objection to, but rather the contrary, if he would stop the sailing of the vessel. At last he signed my passport, and I then gave him what information I could respecting the state of affairs in Chile, Peru, and the Pampas, all of which was taken in writing by the secretary. This being concluded, I stepped into the boat and went on board the brig, New Jersey. In two days time we got clear
of the river. The passengers consisted of four besides myself. One of them was an old Portuguese captain of a trading vessel, whose system of navigation was so completely different from that of the young American, that constant and not unamusing disputes were perpetually occurring. The chief source was respecting the quantity of sail; the American carried on pretty well, much in the ratio of the disappearance of the glasses of spirit, and the more representations addressed to him by the old gentleman the more sail was set. I was at last obliged to interfere, and tell the latter in Portuguese that we should be infallibly upset if he said any thing more on the subject. The rest of the voyage he did nothing but mutter Aves and pater Nosters, and I firmly belive will never again set his foot on board a vessel which is not Portuguese.—"where," said he, "not a word is allowed to be spoken on the quarter deck." The indraught on this shore from the eastward is so great, that it is fabled a large animal is driving the vessels in with his breath. Nothing worthy of note occurred during the voyage, which was terminated by the arrival of the ship in the bay of
VOL. II. N
Rio de Janeiro, on the 18th July, after an absence from it of six months to a day. The surrounding scenery appeared as beautiful as when I first saw it.
Preparations for a Journey to the Gold Mines.—Departure from Rio de Janeiro.—Arrival at Porto da Estrella.—Mandioca.—Serra da Estrella.—Padre Correa.—Pampulha.—Rio Paraiba.—Paraibuna.—Gold washing.—Register of Mathias Barbosa.—Serra da Mantequeira.—Emerge from the thick Forests, and arrive on the elevated Plains devoid of Timber.—Barbacena.—Queluz.
On my arrival at Rio de Janeiro, I was made acquainted with all the interesting political events which had occurred during my absence, and I determined to return to England by the first favourable opportunity. As it was unlikely, however, that any would immediately occur, I resolved, instead of waiting in the city, to make a short excursion to the gold mines. I commenced my preparations accordingly. The difficulties of travelling in Brazil are so numerous, that an absolute necessity exists to bo prepared with every requisite before leaving the city. In the interior, little is to be procured, and that little only in the more considerable spots. The greatest difficulty lies in procuring mules for
the journey: for unless they be well trained and in good condition, they are the source of never ending trouble, vexation, and destruction to every thing placed on their backs. Unless well broken, they will sometimes re main perfectly still and not proceed one foot further, or run wild into the wood: perhaps lie down and, rolling over, crush the boxes fixed totheir sides, or, taking fright, dash them against projecting rocks, or against the others in advance. Little dependence can be placed on them; and the mule, which to-day might be the pattern of the troop, exhibits tomorrow, in succession, all the bad qualities for which the breed is remarkable. Profiting by the experience of other travellers, and the little I had seen in a former short excursion, I determined not to leave the capital without being well prepared in this respect. I met with at last and purchased two fine mules for carrying packs; they had just come off a journey and were in excellent condition. I had previously procured a large brown riding mule for myself and a horse for the servant Rosario. The pack-saddles (cangalha) next required particular attention, for if the back of the animal is at all galled, the heat of the climate is
such that it becomes a serious business, and his services are soon terminated. The next matter which occupied my attention was to engage a tropeiro, or mule-driver, who could shoe, bleed, and attend cattle, as well as manage the loads and repair the packs. This was another cause of delay, as well as that of procuring a free negro, well recommended, to drive and collect the mules, and fulfil other offices, Some further time was lost in obtaining proper travelling canastres, or trunks, a tent, and other articles. At length, on the 28th, August, I despatched the tropeiro and Adam the black with the mules and horse, to proceed round the bay to the Porto da Estrella, and there wait for my arrival by sea. On the following day, all the baggage, which uanvoidably amounted to more than I could wish, was got in readiness, and as soon as the sea-breeze commenced, I took leave of my kind host, Colonel Cunningham, and his family, and stepped into an open boat with Rosario and the luggage. As we embarked in Botafogo bay, we called at the city and completed our purchases.
30th August.—Having finished our business in the city, we again embarked, and steered north by compass. The barometer stood at
29. 753′, and the thermometer at 76°. We passed the Ilha de Governador, the Ilha de Agua, and other beautiful islands, with which the bay is studded. Late in the afternoon we arrived at the termination of it, and entered a narrow muddy river, calld the Inhumerim, which flows from the Serra da Estrella, or Organ Mountains, to the bay, through low grounds and swamps. As we rowed up it, many alligators of considerable size showed themselves for a moment, and disappeared on receiving a few shot. One miserable hut, which stood at the point, formed by the bay and the eiver, was the only habitation we met with. An hour before dark the boat reached the Porto da Estrella, where I found Adam and the tropeiro anxiously looking out for me. Getting every thing on shore, I obtained admittance into a house for the night.
31st August.—The informatian we obtained from those persons, who had just arrived from the mines, was highly favourable. No rain had yet fallen in the upper country, and the roads were excellent.
From this spot a large proportion of the produce of the mines is embarked for the capital in large flat-bottomed covered boats; and this circumstance keeps the village in a constant
state of bustle. This trade is the main support of about five or six hundred inhabitants. I met here my old acquaintance Colonel José Victorino, (of the militia,) who soon engaged me deeply on a topic, which but a few months before he dared scarcely think about, the Portuguese constitution. It was, he said, to be a remedy for every evil, and to increase the produce of the upper country in an extraordinary degree. I inquired maliciously the meaning of the word constitution, to which he could give no answer.
Like all ports of this kind, Porto da Estrella is a most wretched place to remain in, full of noise, bustle, rats, "cauponibus atque malignis." "Dum œs exigitur, dum mula ligatur," the whole morning was passed away, and it was only about one o'clock we were able to turn our backs on it. The road for some distance, after leaving the village, lay over flat and sandy ground, in parts overflowed with water, even at this period, the driest in the year; it was bounded on both sides by an impenetrable hedge, overrun with parasitic plants of great beauty. I then struck off to the right to visit a sugar plantation belonging to a Major José whom I had
visited on my formar excursion: he seemed glad to see me, but could not sell any of his mules, the hope of which was one motive for my visiting it. As we approached the foot of the serra the scenery became more beautiful, and on leaving the swamp we naturally observed a difference in the vegetation. The lofty peaks in front of us, covered to their summits with timber, and appearing to project from the great serra, added diversity to the scene, and hurried us onwards. About six o'clock we entered the fazenda, or farm of M. Langsdorff, a name well known to all lovers of science, and were hospitably received by his factor M. Lindenburg. The farm is of considerable extent, and has materially improved under his hand, but there was an evident want of slaves. He had laid out a large portion of the best ground for plantations of coffee, and at some period hence will derive no inconsiderable gains from them. This estate is called Mandioca, from it having formerly produced large quantities of the mandioca root. M. Lindenburg had just erected a machine for the cutting and pressing of this article of subsistence. Water was the moving power.
The few fezendas in the neighbourhood were all occupied in pressing the sugar cane. It is cut and brought to the mill by slaves of both sexes. The mill worked by mules is stopped at sun set. The variety called the Canjam* is mostly in use for making sugar, which is almost entirely clayed. The clay is obtained by washing the decomposed granite which every where abounds. The other variety, called criolho, is mostly used for making spirits; it is more juicy and less sweet than the former. The Otaheiten is as yet unknown in the country. Mandioca is much cultivated, frequently alternating with the sugar cane, by which plan the ground is kept in a constant state of productiveness; otherwise not more than four crops can be obtained from the ground, when it must be allowed to lie fallow for two years to recruit.
1st September.—Rose at day light. Owing to a heavy rain which had fallen during the night, the air felt chilly, although the thermometer stood at 70°. The valley, which was between the house of Mr. Langsdorff and the mountain, presented the curious appearance of
vapour, rising like smoke form particular spots where the foliage offered no mechanical obstruction. Ateight o'clock the mules being collected and laden, we left Mandioca, and directly afterwards began the ascent of the Serra da Estrella, by a broad paved road, the only one which exists in this part of Brazil. In two hours' time we reached the summit, and on turning round enjoyed one of the most magnificent views which I ever beheld, extending over the bay and city of Rio de Janeiro, from the last of which we were distant about fifteen leagues. The mountains on either hand were clothed with the richest verdure, and completed one of nature's finest scenes, and which seem almost peculiar to Brazil. The barometer at this point stood at 27.152. Soon afterwards we lost the paved road, and pursued the track by the side of a deep precipice covered with timbar, and at the bottom of which, a mountain torrent dashed over a stony bed. Whenever the rock showed itself it proved to be gneiss of a porphyritic aspect. On the right of the road I discovered a bed of greenstone, slightly dipping to the S.W. After passing this spot we came to a small fazenda calld Corrego Secco, the road winding
through the gorges of the mountain, and offering at every turn the most splendid scenery. In some places the ground was cleared to a certain height on the flanks of the hills, and above it a mass of virgin vegetation crowned the summit. The woods abounded with the fir of the countty (Araucaria) and the sumambaya, the tree which the sloths love to frequent. In the earlier part of the morning we saw and killed many birds, but were unable to find them afterwards from the thickness of the foliage. After crossing a rapid stream, called the Rio das Mortes, to the single fazenda of Tamarati, the appearances of cultivation were more frequent. The mule track, with the exception of some spots, was very good. Towards the afternoon we arrived at the chacra of the Padre Correa, six leagues distant from Mandioca, where we remained the rest of the day.
This gentleman has a very extensive estate, which he keeps in excellent order, and annually raises large quantities of Indian corn. The mandioca root does not flourish well, on account of the temperature being too low in this elevated region. For this reason he has planted extensive tracks with the peach and
the grape; and by his proximity to the oity, is enabled to send them thither and make very considerable gains. Adjoining the house, there is a small chapel, where the Padre collects his negros and says mass. His attention to this race is most marked, and he is almost adored by them. Every night they come in and kiss his hand, which gives him an opportunity of observing whether they have washed themselves before they retire for the night. Another occupation of the priest is, shoeing the horses and mules of passengers. He informed me that he had been lately using with great success the Russian instead of the Swedish iron for this purpose. The farther part of the quadrangle was occupied by a small house dedicated to those who passed the night in this spot. Thither the Padre sent me a fowl and rice for supper. The custom usually prevails in this part of Brazil.
2d September.—This morning the riding mule was not to be found; and as she was a remarkably fine animal, I at once concluded that she had been stolen. About eleven o'clock she was brought in, and taking my leave of the Padre, I continued my route
towards the north. The most annoying circumstance in the mode of travelling is, the difficulty of setting off in the cool part of the morning, owing to the mules being absent. At night they are fed with Indian corn and then turned out to pasture; but as that is extremely scanty during the dry season, they frequently wander several leagues off in the woods before day light, and are not recovered until late in the day in a very exhausted condition. The traveller is therefore forced to proceed in the heat of the sun until the approach of the evening. No idea can be formed of the fatigue of this mode of travelling. The cold at night is severely felt; and the sun, being neither tempered by the land nor sea breezes, is absolutely scorching, and renders the day extremely oppressive.
The track wound through the gorges of the mountains with the Rio Piabanha on our right hand. We could hear it at times tumbling over some considerable precipice, which the thickness of the wood prevented the eye from penetrating. Occasionally we met troops Of mules laden with cotton or maize, or coarse cloths, the productions of the higher country. The track which we pursued was so narrow that
it would scarcely permit two laden mules to pass each other; and the plica of vegetation on each side was such, that it was impossible to turn aside. The soil was a reddish coloured clay, which exposed occasionally the underlying gneiss. Reaching Soumidouro, which consists of a single farm-house, we shortly afterwards crossed a river, in which I observed many greenstone boulders. There were no appearances of cultivation. We arrived at length at the fazenda of Padre Secretario, where we calculated on getting some refreshment; but in which we were disappointed. The reverend gentleman would give me as much of his conversation as I pleased; but he would neither give nor sell any thing else. Unwillingly I was obliged to give orders to load the mules, and proceed another league to Pampulha.
The track led over a bridge, and then ascended for half a league to the summit of a considerable mountain, and afterwards descended for the samedistance to the huts called Pampulha. We stopped at a venda, or small shop, the owner of which did all in his power to accommodate us. As the master of a merchant vessel, he had made several voyages to
England, and become tolerably acquainted with the language. When we began conversing, every one in the village came round us, and expressed a most unaccountable surprise. If one might judge from the stock of this shopkeeper, his fortunes had sadly changed. It consisted of two or three cakes of coarse brown sugar, called rapadoeira, and a little cachasse, or common spirit. Eggs and a fowl were promised, but none came; and some cabbages, which were offered for sale, proved to be only cabbage leaves. We procured at last some boiled Indian corn, and two doves I had shot in the course of the day, completed the repast. This was the last spot where I noticed rats. They were here, as at all the former stations, excessively numerous; but they extended no farther into the interior. In the course of the night, they ate the back part of my tropeiro's hat; to avoid such an accident, I always placed the. clothes I took off at night in the place occupied by the mattress. The mosquitoes had left us at Mandioca; so that in fact we had only one more torment to contend with, the carapato, a small mite, or tick, which lives in great numbers among the brushwood, and attacking the body, inserts its head, and becomes as
large and as black as a coffee bean, creating all the time a most insufferable irritation. They require great care in the extirpation; but the best remedy is by washing the part with tobacco water.
I endeavoured by means of my host to obtain another mule for the cangalha, in which I was so fortunate as to succeed. A dreadful thunderstorm prevailed during the night.
3d September.—The track, like the preceding days, led through the gorges of the mountains, with a precipice generally on one side, so thickly studded with timber and underwood, that neither its depth, nor the river which was heard dashing at its bottom could be discovered. On the other side, the bank, which extended to a considerable height, exposed a deep red coloured clay, which showed beneath it, in places, a whitish fine grained and greatly decomposed gneiss. My tropeiro, who was a native of the province of Rio Grande do Sul, showed me a congonha tree, from which he said they collected in his country the yerba matte. It grew about twelve to fourteen feet high, had white flowers, leaves rather gummy, and not unlike those of an orange. I noticed likewise, what appeared
to me fuchsias, many lillies in blossom, and some very curious parasitic plants. In the course of the morning, we shot many toucans, parroquets and doves; but the foliage was so thick we could not find half of them. After passing a habitation called Lagoa, we arrived at the Engenho do Governo. These engenhos consist of a low dwelling for the proprietor, and a large shed at a distance, where the various troops of mules house their goods for the night. The proprietor builds the shed and keeps it in repair: he is paid for this by the opportunity it affords him of selling Indian corn and mules' shoes to the tropeiros: to this is attached, in most cases, although not always, a venda or shop, most indifferently supplied with any thing for sale. Immediately surrounding these situations, there is always an appearance of cultivation Before reaching a spot called Lucas, we passed a profusion of maracujas, (Passifloras), some in fruit and others in flower, of deep purple. As we could obtain nothing to eat at Lucas, and as the rancho, or shed, was already taken by other troops, I was obliged to proceed half a league farther or more, before I could discover a space sufficiently large in the path through
VOL. II. O
the wood, to allow of pitching the tent. All through this day's journey, of about five leagues, there were numbers of copim nests, (white ants), of five and six feet high, by the side of the track. They were formed of yellow clay, and stood up like so many mile stones. An idea prevails, that every white ant's nest is frequented by a toad, a seriema, and a snake. The first to eat the ants, and afterwards to be devoured by the snake, which is the source of attraction to the bird:—thus we devour one another. In the course of the day, we heard some birds and the chattering of monkies at a distance. During the day, however, the woods are comparatively quiet; but the instant night closes in, the confusion of noises is most extraordinary. While seated in my tent with candles, the various insects, attracted by the light, formed a strange concert. Toads, frogs, crickets, beetles, fire-flies, and a host of others, mingled their peculiar sounds. We had killed in the course of the day about a dozen large doves, some toucans, and almas de gato, which afforded us all some nourishment. The toucan is not the most savoury bird, neither is the alma de gato very desirable. It bears this name, which signifies the soul of
a cat, from having a profusion of feathers and a small body, and being therefore difficult to kill. During the night, a wild pig crept in under the tent and carried off half a cheese.
4th September.—The barometer showed this morning that we had descended considerably during the preceding day.
The comfort of sleeping under a tent is much greater than remaining under the rancho; but it is attended with more trouble, and after sitting eight or ten hours on a mule in the sun, the least exertion is annoying. In consequence of the heaviness of the rains, it is absolutely necessary to form a kind of trench round the tent, to prevent unpleasant consequences; and the following morning, after the tent is taken down, the traveller is obliged to remain unprotected from the sun, while it is packed up and placed on the mule.
After many ascents and descents, over a soil of a deep brick-dust colour, we arrived on the bank of the Rio Paraiba. Near it I observed many rounded waterworn masses of greenstone, but I could discover none in situ. Some gneiss appeared very considerably inclined. On the opposite, or left bank, the registeroffice is built, where all mules and passengers
arriving from the mines are closely examined for diamonds and gold dust, two articles strictly prohibited. The commandant had a guard of twelve soldiers, and an armed boat, which rowed up and down at night, to prevent any persons crossing the river, in this place about a hundred yards across. The current is rapid, about seven miles the hour, and the water cool, being twelve degrees under the temperature of the air, which was 80°. After exhibiting my portaria, or license to travel, I left the registro of the Paraiba, and immediately commenced a long and painful ascent. The road was excessively bad, being extremely narrow, with a gulley down the centre; and the soil, being a red clay, was very insecure from the humidity. From the summit, the views on all sides were magnificent; but more particularly the one which extended along the valley of the Paraiba. Here and there, the eye caught a glimpse of the river glistening amidst the deepest and most luxuriant vegetation.
My tropeiro brought ma some pieces of the Quina or Bark, and pointed out many trees. It was extremely bitter, and is, I have no doubt, as good a febrifuge as the Peruvian.
All those who pass through these woods use it for the teeth and in cases of loss of appetite. This bark is of a higher colour than the Jesuits', and I presume of a very different species. The track now led down a descent, and afterwards ascended by a zigzag and most laborious road to nearly its former elevation. The heat was intense, and the mules suffered considerably, and drank at every stream. Large masses of undecomposed feldspar rose in places out of the deep red earth. In other spots the soil was a stiff red clay. The thick wood, although boasting of a large proportion of evergreens, showed, at least the highest trees, a wintery appearance. We had not long left the Paraiba, when an immense boa constrictor showed himself among the foliage over my head and the tropeiro's. He was playing about, and instantly retired; he was so close to me that I had a good opportunity of examining his length and the dark brown spots with which he was marked, before my mule and the tropeiro's horse descried him, when the former sprung forward, and the latter turned round, and with great difficulty was brought up again to the spot, which he passed in a trembling state. Rosario and Adam were in
advance with the mules and the gun, and had seen nothing of the monster. This was the largest boa I ever saw alive, and I should conceive measured sixteen or eighteen feet. Some skins I subsequently measured were of much greater length. They were brought from the sertāo, or country not at all traversed; and when tanned formed an excellent boot quite impervious to the wet. Many of the respectable miners wear boots of this description. The heat was so oppressive on this day that we saw few birds, they appeared to have retired to the very depths of the woods. The trees which we passed were of immense height; for although in many instances they rose from a depth of forty feet below us, they towered as many over our heads. They were chiefly the tree which produces the gum copaiba. We proceeded onwards to a rancho called Payal, and thence over the summits of many serras, ascending and descending continually, until seven o'clock in the evening, when we came in sight of and descended to the bank of the Paraibuna. The temperature of the water was 71° and of the air 78°. The distance completed this day was about six leagues, but the heat was so oppressive, and the track,
from the repeated ascents and descents, so extremely fatiguing, that the mules arrived at the river in a very exhausted state. After unloading them, we allowed them to lie down or wander about for an hour or two, before we attempted to feed them; but even then they would not touch the Indian corn, and we were at last obliged to add some handfulls of salt, to get them to eat any. Our own chase had been very unfortunate: only one large bird had been killed; but on taking off the skin for the sake of the plumage, the body was evidently too small for supper. A fortunate occurrence obtained us however an excellent repast. My man, previous to leaving Rio de Janeiro, bought the old hat of a priest, which from its very broad flaps, he conceived would be an effectual shelter from the sun. When we came down to the huts of the paraibuna, one of the inhabitants thought he recognized in Rosario a priest who had once said mass there, and knowing he could procure nothing fit to eat, had a fowl instantly killed, dressed with rice, and sent it to us. In fact, there is little or nothing to be got in these villages; the mule drivers live on feijoē;s or beans and pork, which they carry with them,
and the inhabitants have little more than is sufficient for their own consumption. The land which they take the trouble to cultivate, is cropped with Indian corn, and is entirely consumed on the spot. The inhabitants are a mixed race of blacks and mulattoes, and occasionally with a dash of Indian blood. They are chiefly free. They are excessively indolent, as it may be supposed, and do not appear even stimulated by the idea of gain. Their huts are formed of mud, with a covering of broad leaves; the better description have a ceiling formed of split canes, called taquarra
The registro of the Paraibuna is built on the opposite side of the river, and about a hundred small huts or houses surround it. The Paraibuna flows down from the back of the Serra da Mantequeira, under the name of the Rio Preto, which is in fact a mere translation of the Indian word Paraibuna.* It is here about fifty yards across, and flows with a turbid but rapid current, half a degree farther to the east, where it joins the Paraiba, and their united streams enter the sea under the name of the Southern Paraiba. Its sand is eminently auriferous,
* Para, river, and ibuna, black.
and in front of the registro many canoes were at work. By means of a windlass and an iron scoop, the gold-washers dredge up into the canoe a portion of the bed of the river, and when they have procured as much as they can carry, they move to their washing place, which is a kind of platform projecting over the river, the cascallo or gravel and sand is then shovelled into a large trough, and upon it a neighbouring stream is conducted by means of large bamboos. The canoes are very large, and formed out of a single tree. There were usually three blacks in the canoe, and two on the platform, who received a patach (320 reis) per diem each, which for five amounted to 1,600 reis; and as the daily gain was generally equal to 2,200, about ten shillings, there was a balance of 600 reis for the owners of the boat. One of the patrāos informed me, that he frequently collected with three boats five or six octavas of gold (72 grains each) in the course of the day. The gold he showed me was fine grained and of good colour. The gravel brought up with it consisted chiefly of quartz of a brilliant whiteness, appearing at first like white topazes, rounded cornelians of a yellowish tint with the red, some agates, and aquamarines of a muddy
bad colour. I obtained from the mass of refuse several specimens of this description, and a few waterworn wine-yellow topazes. On the bank of the river I observed many large masses of ferruginous quartz, destined, perhaps, when the progress of decomposition is completed, to add a small stock of gold to the sands of the stream, from which large quantities have been already obtained.
After leaving my informants, who were closing their labours for the day, I retired to the hut of the venda, which was kept by an old man and woman, and, from the avocations of the latter, was better supplied than the generality. The old woman acted as the doctress of the village, and was often sent for to the other side of the river to administer strong decoctions of plants to those persons who were suspected of concealing diamonds by swallowing them. The week before, she informed me, a boat was sent for her in the evening from the registro, and a message to bring some of her most powerful remedies with her. On reaching the opposite bank, she was introduced to a lady who had just arrived from Villa Rica, with suspicions of concealing a very large and valuable diamond. As the officers were satisfied with the correctness of
the information, and as they could by no means discover the treasure, they placed her in the hands of my hostess, who very shortly afterwards produced the diamond, and obtained a handsome present for her trouble. The lady, it appeared, had in vain endeavoured to dispose of the stone in the Minas, and therefore was taking the journey to Rio de Janeiro solely to dispose of it.
I was just on the point of lying down for the night when I was informed that a person from the opposite side had landed, and begged permission to pay his compliments to me. I at once concluded that it might be some one who brought a message from the commandant respecting the passage in the morning, and prepared to receive him with proper Brazilian form and a volley of compliments to the officer who sent him. A mulatto entered the room with a great number of bows and compliments, and I begged him to sit down by me, and began a conversation about the river and mines. He directly afterwards began to feel the flap of my coat, and admired the fineness of the cloth; all of which I received in the way a man does who expects to be asked for something he cannot part with; a situation of very
common occurrence in Brazil. At last he felt my arm, and, when I drew back, he begged ten thousand pardons, said he was the tailor of the village, and that he had just received some orders from the officers of the registro, and that his sole purport in visiting me was to obtain the pattern of my coat. I complied with his request, and received in return a profusion of compliments, partly bestowed on me and partly on my coat, which he said was much better worked than the French: most unfortunately for his judgment, it was made in Paris.
5th September.—About five o'clock this morning Adam arrived with the information that the new mule was nowhere to be found. I sent him off again in one direction, and the tropeiro in another, with orders not to return without it.
The common method of drying hides is by stretching them out on sticks, and not by pegging them down to the ground as they do in the Spanish provinces. Indeed, from the frequency of rains, it would be impossible in Brazil to follow this process. By the other plan they can be moved under shelter in a moment.
About eight o'clock a black girl arrived with a large bason of coffee and milk, and some fresh bread and butter, a present from two young ladies, the daughters of a colonel who lived in the immediate neighbourhood. After making her a small present, I begged her to obtain permission for me to visit the senhoras. When she returned for the napkin, she informed me that I might call on the colonel as soon as I pleased. I found the family, who had hitherto resided in Rio de Janeiro, extremely anxious to hear the news of the capital, and I passed an hour very pleasantly with them.
At ten o'clock the tropeiro returned quite fatigued and without any intelligence of the stray mule. I returned to gain some more information from the colonel and his daughters. I think I have before stated that every man with a little property has rank in the provincial militia; and to omit giving the title, whether Tenente Coronel, Sargento Môr, Capitāo or Alferes, at least once in each sentence, would be an irremediable fault. Latterly my people declared that unless I consented to assume some title of this kind, that both themselves and the mules would infallibly starve.
I found there was so much truth in the statement that I very unwillingly yielded, although I profited more than once by the deception. At one place I could not obtain a grain of maize for the mules, in spite of the strongest representations of the party, and in spite of my title of Senhor Tenente Coronel, which the cunning old woman declared was a mere fiction, for that she saw I had neither a dress hat with cockade, or decoration of an order. I was obliged to put on a military jacket, sword, and hat, to satisfy her scruples; and when she saw me coming up in this costume, she called all her blacks, men and women, to form a passage to her chair, which was placed at the farther end of the veranda: and after the usual compliments and many questions, which gave me an opportunity of observing that the large and fine shawl with which she was enveloped was meant to conceal a miserable dishabille, she ordered her head negro to give me as much maize as I wanted. Several other instances of the same nature occurred to me
About eleven o'clock, when the heat was becoming excessive, Adam arrived with the mule, and we lost no further time in getting ready to pass the river, which we accom-
plished in half an hour, and entered the register. Our names were entered into the book, and the fees for passing the two ferries of the Paraiba and Paraibuna were paid here; they amounted to 3,640 reis, rather more than seventeen shillings English. The secretary allowed me to examine the list of passengers; in the preceding month, 1769 persons and 7610 mules and horses had passed. He said that the number of animals varied considerably, and that during the wet season very little traffic took place: he added, that considerable diminution had taken place since the departure of the king. All the officers of the register were in high spirits, as they had seized the preceding day six hundred octavas of gold in dust on the person of a Frenchman. They were so pleased with the seizure that they allowed the delinquent to escape, instead of consigning him to prison, and finally to Angola for life.
After leaving the registro the path led up a considerable ascent, and then descended to a spot called the Rossinha da Negra, where there was a guard of soldiers. The same red ferruginous soil prevailed, with here and there a piece of reddish coloured quartz making its
appearance: thence we passed onwards to Simāo Perreira, and afterwards to the Registro de Mathias Barbosa, where I obtained shelter for the night.
The province of the Minas Geraes had commenced at the Paraibuna; and the register there, independently of preventing persons passing with gold and diamonds, and of receiving the tolls of the ferries, had the duty of examining the goods carried into the country, in order to see that they were perfectly conformable to the various royal decrees respecting the province. Foreign iron, for instance, which is in use in all other parts of Brazil, is strictly prohibited in the Minas Geraes.
The line of road this day was continually ascending or descending, although the hills were not so precipitous as the preceding one. The ascents were much longer. The nature of the wood was very different, neither so high nor so large, and much more land was cleared by burning for cultivation. Near Simāo Perreira we met with a fruit growing in profusion, called by the muleteers juan matafome, from its quality of allaying hunger: it resembled a yellow gooseberry in appearance. The
latter part of our day's journey was performed on the banks of the Paraibuna, which met with many precipices in its course.
The Registro de Mathias Barbosa consists of a large square, surrounded with buildings and guard-houses, and with two gates. The soldiers admitted me in their barrack room, and very civilly took my portaria to the commandant, and got his signature put to it.
At one of the huts I visited in the course of the day I found the people busily employed in removing the seeds of cotton in the following manner. Two children turned round in contrary directions two small cylinders of smooth hard wood, set in a little frame close together, while a third presented the cotton, which passing between, the seeds are left behind. At this place I persuaded the woman to sell a fowl, which is not an easy task, for unless sickness is used as an excuse for the demand, it is seldom complied with.
6th September.—We collected the mules in good time, and proceeded on our journey, but the road was so slippery from the rain which had fallen during the night, that the animals could scarcely keep their feet. I observed a low bush covered with berries, (like a solanum,)
VOL. II. P
which the tropeiro called a mata cavallos, from its proving excessively destructive to horses, We passed many copaiba trees: in order to obtain the gum, the inhabitants puncture the bark, and affix a gourd to the place: in three or four weeks it is removed quite full. In the course of the morning we killed many toucans and small green parroquets. Although we met with no habitations nearer than a league to each other, there were many more appearances of cultivation. The upper soil was a light coloured loam, which covered a deep red earth. Gneiss, of various aspects, but in all cases imbedding garnets, and greatly decomposed, showed itself occasionally.
We met several troops of mules proceeding towards the coast, and as they were numerous, I could not understand how it happened that they were on the point of completing their four leagues journey, in many instances about the period I was taking my departure. I now discovered, that one of the tocadors, or drivers, formed a kind of covering for himself with boughs, completely across the track, so that no mules could pass in that direction; and another tocador, half a league the other way, did exactly the same, so that the animals were
inclosed between the two, and the woods on each hand being impervious, the animals were collected with facility. After passing a rancho called Mideiras, we arrived at the morro of the same name. This hill is lofty; and the path which leads over it is excessively steep and bad. The summit is covered with crosses, as an idea prevails, that all who put up a cross on their first visit to the mines will assuredly return: there were not less, on a moderate computation, than two thousand. We failed not to place our crosses also on this spot, but only as if to prove its fallibility; for one of the party, it will be seen, never returned. The road afterwards descended to a small spot, with two or three huts, called the Juez da Fora, the chief inhabitant being a justice of the peace. It was here that I first noticed the machine called a jogo, for pounding Indian corn. A beam of wood, with a box at one end, and a pestle dovetailed into it at right angles at the other, is nearly balanced on an upright post; the pestle falls into a wooden mortar, but a stream of water is conducted to the box, which gradually raises the pestle, until the beam, losing its equilibrium, discharges the water, and the pestle descends with
violence. On the descent I remarked some large masses of quartz rock, and on the opposite hill I discovered it in situ, of a greyish colour and slaty. At some places it became ferruginous: its juncture with the sub-incumbent rock was not visible. Obtaining some rice and maize, and adding the toucans and parroquets killed in the course of the day, we contrived to find sufficient for the party.
7th September.—We began the march about half-past eight o'clock, only one of the mules being lost until that time. We seldom met with any persons on the track, excepting muleteers. This morning, however, we fell in which a black, by himself, who had erysipelas in his legs; and on conversing with him, I was amused with what he declared was a sovereign remedy for the disorder; nothing but applying the warm blood of a black fowl to the affected part—a regular Greek sacrifice to Esculapius. He added, that it must be a black fowl, which was different from any other, in having blue bones and warmer blood. It is generally thought that this description of bird is half vulture. We proceeded to Antonio Morreira, the ascents becoming much longer and therefore less precipitous in their descents, but still high.
There was little variation in the appearance of the soil. The only rock I could discover in situ was gneiss, filled with garnets, and more or less decomposed in consequence. The mule track now became better, for the woods receded a little, and were not of so dense a nature: many of the trees were firs of the country, and many appeared to me to be palms. In one place I smelt a strong musky scent, which I was informed proceeded from a snake, called, in the language of the country, suruguasu, a very venemous reptile, of about ten feet in length. Soon afterwards the tropeiro and myself shot a few more parroquets, one of which fell into a bush; when we came up we found the bird in the fangs of a snake, from which we retreated with all speed. Next the track led to a beautiful spot called Sobradinha, where there was much cultivated land; and at the next hut, called Rossinha de Chapeo d'Uvas, we procured oranges and bananas. Every step we advanced, a great improvement was perceptible. More cultivation, more civility, and, what to a traveller is of no little consequence, better food for the mules.
We arrived at Chapeo d'Uvas about half-past four o'clock, one of the prettiest and most civi-
lized spots I had met with since leaving Rio de Janeiro. The venda did not deserve what is commonly said of them, a venda ou nao véndem nada—the shop where nothing is sold. It possessed an excellent traveller's room, with a boarded floor, which saved the trouble of erecting the tent. There is a small chapel and a padre, who, on being paid 12.800, will says mass in any of the neighbouring hamlets, which are not so well provided. In descending the hill, I remarked some quartz boulders as well as some greenstone, but evidently not in situ.
8th September.—The morning was so dark from a thick fog, that we all overslept ourselves, and we did not ascend the opposite hill until nine o'clock. Shortly afterwards it began to rain, and continued raining more or less all day. This was the first rain we had experienced during the day since we quitted the coast. The number of dwellings at almost every half league increased considerably, and there was of course much more cultivation and more ground in the act of being cleared by burning. The woods were of a less luxuriant nature, and the thermometer showed that we had increased the degree of cold. The fir
trees and the sumambayas were those that occupied the largest portion of the forest. There was no variation in the soil. The under strata exhibited themselves constantly; they were formed of gneiss with granite veins, in a singular state of decomposition. On the brows of the hills there were always large quartz boulders and many considerable masses of greenstone. The rain made the path extremeiy slippery, and the mules, which had English shoes, could scarcely make their way to the summits of the hills. In the course of the day we met many troops of mules laden with cotton, coarse cotton cloths, bacon, cheese, coffee and marmelada, a sweet preparation of quinces. All the muleteers, on meeting people on the road, say, Jesu Christo, to which the proper answer to be returned is, Louvado seja Deos que faz santos—Let God be praised who makes saints: but as this sentence is found too long, the more usual reply is simply A Deos. We arrived at length at Mantequeira, about six leagues from our resting place of the preceding night. We found there a very good venda and a room to sleep in.
This spot has acquired some degree of celebrity, by having been for many years the
hiding place of a gang of banditti: it is now nearly thirty years since they were extirpated, but not until many passengers had disappeared. The method they had recourse to, in order to entrap the unsuspecting traveller was this: one of their colleagues in Villa Rica obtained information as to those persons who were proceeding with property to Rio de Janeiro, and begged them to take charge of a letter to Mantequeira. In it there were peculiar expressions, known among the gang, respecting the riches of the bearer. On reaching Mantequeira, and delivering the letter, he was murdered, and himself and his horse or mule thrown down a large natural cavity in the mountain. So many persons had disappeared on their journey to the coast, and had been always traced to this spot, that the government determined to make a vigorous search; and it is related that their den was discovered by a circumstance which affords another proof of the strength and luxuriance of the vegetation. A saddle which had been thrown into the cave was carried up among the boughs of a tree, which sprang up from its depth. On descending, the bones of men and beats were found lying in confusion, and in
another place the vast riches of these freebooters. Many of them were taken: three were executed on a high post, which was soon afterwards entirely enveloped and concealed from view by a nest of white ants.
In the evening many persons arrived from various quarters to attend the mass. They were chiefly on foot and without shoes.
9th September.—During the night the rain fell heavily, and the morning was severely cold; the thermometer stood at 58°. Immediately after leaving this fazenda we ascended a considerable hill, on the left hand of which I discovered and took specimens of the old red sandstone rock. The change in the appearance of the trees and country was most perceptible, very few trees comparatively, and those pines, On the highest part of this ridge the barometer stood at 26.601. The country on the left became quite free from trees, and on the right numbers of lofty pines allowed the turpentine to run about their roots. It was of such fine quality that I understood it was used in the churches. It might assuredly be turned to account. The upper soil now became of a deep black colour, as if entirely formed of vegetable remains, or had at one time been covered with
timber. After leaving Batalha, I saw in a cavity some dark coloured mica-slate in situ; farther on rounded fragments of greenstone and large pieces of smoky quartz. In another spot, I observed the depth of the vegetable earth to be about four feet, and covering the same deep red soil which I had traced from the coast. We arrived at length at Bordo do Campo, and completely emerged from the deep forest we had been travelling through for the last ten days. Before us and on each side was an elevated plain, containing hollows of inconsiderable depth, in whose bosom some trees and vegetation took root. The view over the plain was only broken by a few pines and by the jacaranda of poor and wretched growth. At Bordo do campo, I found small masses of white indurated talc and compact chlorite. From this hamlet there was another very considerable ascent, and the road wound round an eminence to Registro Velho, built on the Rio das Mortes. We could here discover the villa of Barbacena, where we finally arrived about nightfall, the mules and horse not fatigued by the length of the day's march, which was more than seven leagues. This small town is built on an eminence, and commands
an extensive prospect on all sides. The inhabitants have endeavoured to cultivate the banana and the orange, but, owing to the elevation, with little success.
10th September.—The town of Barbacena contains about 3,600 inhabitants, three hundred of whom are whites, the rest blacks, mulattoes and quarteroons. It is built in a straggling manner, somewhat in the form of a cross. It contains four churches, one of them, called the Sé, has the appearance of being two or three centuries old. The valley on the west of the town is well laid out in gardens.
I was engaged early this morning in buying a horse: I liked the appearance of the animal, and offered 25 mil reis, but the owner demanded thirty: while I was in the midst of the barter, a man passed me rapidly and whispered "cigano" (gipsey): I immediately withdrew my offer. Within half an hour afterwards I learned that the horse had received a kick, and was occasionally lame. Thus it is, that this wandering people, whether gold washers in Hungary and Transylvania, tinkers in England, or horse-dealers in Brazil, preserve a character for duplicity and cunning which pre-eminently distinguishes them above their fellow men.
I set off from Barbacena about nine o'clock, and travelled over the downs to corrego das Pombas; thence to Alberto Dias, two and a half leagues from the villa. These downs are covered with a wiry grass called barba de bode, or beard of the goat. Trees grow in the hollows only: among them I remarked the jacaranda, of very stinted growth; the wild guava; the white copaiba, which produces a more esteemed rosin than the yellow and is given by the country people with great effect in worm cases. I also noticed a large tree with fruit something similar to an apple, which is eaten only by wolves: it had a very pleasant scent. There were many other trees noticed in the course of this day's journey, but they were all of poor growth. The soil became again of that red greasy earth before mentioned. Sometimes a lighter yellow earth covered it. In one place near Gama the granite discovered itself: masses of ferruginous and limpid quartz were very common. I beheld on the left a small virgin wood on fire, and can never forget the spectacle it presented. The devouring element ran in currents and not in line, as I should have imagined it would. At this period, it is also common to set fire to the pastures, that they may spring afresh with
redoubled vigour after the rain. The cattle are very partial to the young shoots, but they are not permitted to eat them, as they are thought to be extremely noxious. Between Gama and Grandahy we lost the track and were benighted. We followed a path, however, and at last arrived at a farm-house, where we were most hospitably received by the lady and afterwards by her husband when he came home. We were supplied with both Indian corn and excellent pasture for the cattle.
11th September.—The morning was severely cold, the thermometer in doors standing at 58°. After breakfast I took leave of my kind hosts, and promised if possible to pay them another visit on my return. The country partook of the same features as the preceding day, with a slight increase of timber. At the bottom of a hill I observed talc-slate, and near Taipuz some sienite in situ. I subsequently endeavoured to kill some large hawks which followed the progress of a fire, but could not succeed. I met with no better fortune in the pursuit of some seriemas, birds as large as hen turkeys; they are however very indifferent eating, as they feed on snakes. After crossing
the river Paraopeba, at a place where there are four huts, we arrived at the Riberāo do Inferno, where some dark coloured gneiss appeared through the soil. After quitting the Riberāo do Inferno, we proceeded to a spot called Bandarinha; and a league and a half farther we found ourselves at the foot of the ascent to the villa of Queluz: we thought we should never reach the summit we were so fatigued. The sun had been all day most oppressively scorching, in spite of a breeze from the eastward. My mule would not touch the maize until some salt was thrown amongst it.
Queluz.—Congonhas do Campo.—Visit to the Gold Mine of Col. Romualdo.—Proceed to Capāo d' Olanda and examine the Topaze Mine.—Arrival at Villa Rica—Excursion to Mariana and Itacolumi of Mariana.—Visit to Mange Leguas and the Gold Mine of Cuyaba.—visit to the Capitāo Môr at Bandeira.—Return to Villa Rica—Farther Description of Villa Rica.—Excursion to the Gold Mine of Passagem.—Climate and Diseases.—Geology.—Journey to Timbopeba and Antonio Perreira.—Return to Villa Rica.
12th September.—THE large village of Queluz is built on the brow of a hill, and consists of two streets, the one below the other. It contains a cathedral and two inferior churches; the former is a large and neat building. The houses are regularly built, chiefly with balconies, and the walls being whitened have a very good appearance. The population varied little from what I had every where seen, being mostly composed of blacks and mulattoes; it scarcely reached three thousand. There were no manufactories, and the inhabitants appeared to do little else than raise a sufficiency of corn and beans for their subsistence.
We left Queluz about nine o'clock, and continued our route over the downs to Bom Retiro. The track led in many instances along the edge of deep clay ravines, which appear to be increasing annually in width, and which, sooner or later, must render an alteration necessary in the road. After passing a thick forest, we fell in with a concourse of people, proceeding to Congonhas do Campo, in order to keep a fête, annually celebrated at this period. I joined a cavalcade of between forty and fifty ladies and gentlemen, all in excellent spirits, and I had thus an opportunity of observing some of the characteristic features of the inhabitants of the mines. They are generally tall, thin, and well made, with a lively countenance, and very light brown complexion; they have long necks and narrow chests, with black hair and eyes. There is scarcely any race of men with features more clearly marked than these; independently of their dress, they can be at once recognized in Brazilian or from the inhabitant of St. Paul's.
The usual dress of the Mineiro, on holidays, consists of white jean or cotton trowsers, enveloped higher than the knee in boots, made either of untanned leather, or the skin of the
boa constrictor snake, a white waistcoat, ornamented with long and rudely shaped buttons made of gold, either in Villa Rica or Rio de Janeiro, and a short jacket of blue nankin; the under linen is generally clean; a large white hat with a broad brim and tassels, and a pair of massy silver spurs complete the costume. The horse he rides is decorated with many silver ornaments; the bridle, bit, and stirrups being profusely covered. Horses called pacers, which, without fatiguing the rider, proceed between five and six miles in the hour are generally preferred. I could not avoid remarking that the old people of the different families made the young people ride always close to them in front. The ladies were so completely enveloped in thick drab great coats (and this on one of the hottest days I ever felt) that I could scarcely distinguish the old from the young.
In the course of the day's journey we met many persons afflicted with goitres, chiefly mulattoes. We reached Congonhas, five leagues from Queluz, about two o'clock, and found such an immense concourse of people that we despaired at first of getting shelter any where from the sun; every house was full inside and out, and about the door of each, large straw
VOL. II. Q
mattresses were extended on the ground. We tried the first side of the town without success, but descending by a paved street we crossed the river by a wooden bridge, ascended the other side, and at last got shelter in a small hut.
At this moment it was quite impossible to form any idea of the population of the town, which was one of the most picturesque I had met with in the province of the mines. It covers two sides of a valley, at the bottom of which the Rio Maranhao with its red muddy stream pursues a winding course. This stream has produced considerable quantities of gold. Near the summits on both sides of the river a very pretty church is erected.
During the afternoon an influx of people alternately passed from one church to the other to hear sermons;—at nine o'clock the village was perfectly quiet.
13th September.—After purchasing another horse I despatched the tropeiro and Adam with the baggage to Capao d'Olanda, while Rosario and I proceeded to the gold washing of Colonel Romualdo, about a league distant, partly in the direction of the river. The colonel received me very kindly, and at once conducted me
over his works. The gold exists in a very friable quartz rock, traversing in veins a greenstone slate. These veins are porous, and in their cavities the gold, of about twenty-two carats fine, is disseminated, and distinctly visible to the naked eye. Grains of a black shining substance, which Colonel Romualdo said were cobalt, and which as far as I had had an opportunity of examining were merely oxide of iron, accompany the gold, which does not put on any geometrical figure, but seems composed of sharp angular particles. Large masses of greenstone slate, in a state of decomposition, and appearing like fuller's earth, laid on each side of the veins. Colonel Romualdo, with immense labour, has conducted a stream of water to the spot, which after laying bare the different quartz veins, rushes down the opening in the side of the hill, and then proceeds to a shed where it moves the stamping mill. The quartz is placed under the stampers, and a stream of water carries off the coarser sand in one direction while in another a number of hides, placed in the contrary direction to the lay of the hair, secures all the lighter particles of metal. I could not ascertain from the colonel what
quantity of gold he annually raised from these works; and I determined afterwards not to put this question, to which, on account of the king's fifth, which few of the miners pay with scrupulous exactitude, I had no chance of receiving a correct answer. After spending five hours in the ravines, I proposed a visit to the mine which contains the fine specimens of the chromate of lead, but I was assured that it was closed and that no possibility existed of obtaining any. Colonel Romualdo gave me many rich specimens of the gold, and promised others of the chromate. I then returned to the village, and proceeded over a very high hill, and by a most rugged path, towards a singularly shaped sierra. I left this on the right hand, and keeping on the bank of a river, reached the morro. There we lost our way, and night came on. Fortunately, however, we met a negro, who had the kindness to conduct us to Capao d'Olanda, otherwise we should not have arrived that night. I was sorry to learn that the owner of the house where I remained, who was also the owner of the topaze mine, was absent at his farm, several leagues distant, and that I could not, therefore, examine his stock of topazes.
14th September.—Early this morning the brother of the owner sent me a large crystal of quartz to examine; it contained two or three topazes of a wine-yellow and pink colour, with some plates of specular iron embedded. I subsequently purchased this specimen and another, and anxiously proceeded on foot to the mine, half a mile distant. The great mass of the hill is micaceous iron ore, which has several peculiarities, which I shall take another opportunity of mentioning. Its inclination is 51°, and the direction N. E. In this great mass there are extensive beds of talc slate, of a very decomposing nature, which are overrun by quartz veins. At the bottom of the hill a considerable stream pursues its course, and in it the first topazes were discovered. Whether this stream and the excavations of its bed caused the talc slate to sink I cannot determine; but a considerable slip took place, and more topazes being found in consequence, it was determined by the owner of the land, to conduct water from a higher hill to the summit of the talc rock; this was accordingly done, and a space of hardly less than three acres has slipped from its original situation and is now carefully examined for topazes.
These precious stones are discovered in the quartz veins before mentioned; they are generally found loose, and are frequently washed out among the decomposed talc slate, which is of red colour, and so soft that the foot sinks in half way up to the knee; this is called pisada by the miners. The quartz veins contain a finely grained white talc, which often penetrates the quartz in long narrow prisms; on exposure to the wet the talc becomes changed in colour, and more earthy. The white talc is thought to be a certain indication of topazes. By the side of these veins large masses of yellow earthy lithomarge and white indurated compact talc are usually met with.
The quartz is generally transparent, and, if not crystallized, has a tendency to being so. Topazes are frequently imbedded in it, as well as the prisms of talc, and six slided tables of green talc. Plates of specular iron are common: the veins vary considerably in thickness, being from two inches to two feet, and from the slip are very much altered from their original position. To this circumstance must be attributed the fact that the topazes which fracture so easily at right angles to their axis, are found broken and loose, and that few spe-
cimens of quartz which contain topazes have the latter projecting unbroken. Very few crystals of topaz are found with the two terminations perfectly defined. I have examined many bags without discovering one with this peculiarity; and when it does exist, one of them is perfectly smooth, while the other always takes a finely granular or sugary appearance. I apprehend that if a vein were opened in another place, the topazes would be found attached to the quartz, and also that the veins would in that case be found perfectly free from the earthly talc with which they are now found to be filled.
This extensive working has been carried on for the last twelve years, and has netted in that time about forty thousand crusados. Very little attention is paid to it during the dry season, but as soon as the rains commence many negroes are brought from the agricultural pursuits of their owner, and employed with small iron pics to search for topazes. For fine stones I was asked about 2.400 rs.; for the octava (seventy-two grains), a very high price
The euclase, which is still of such rare occurrence, is met with in the streams in the
immediate neighbourhood of this topaz work; and although it has never yet been found either attached to or embedded in quartz, there seems no reason to presume that it has any other than a common origin, and its very fragile nature will at once explain how the slip in the vein which has broken the topazes would have at once completely destroyed the other. The inhabitants for many years rejected the euclase as a stone of no value; but since travellers have been inquiring for it, they demand the same price as for topazes. In the actual topaz mine no euclases are discovered.
After spending several hours in examining the topaz mine, I proceeded well stored with specimens towards Villa Rica. At Boa Vista, a league distant from Capāo, there are. Other topaz works, and I arrived at the house one moment too late to save two topazes from being broken out of their quartz gangue. When I could not avoid expressing my regret at this circumstance, the owner told me that I reminded him of the German Baron of Villa Rica,* who, on learning that he had broken
* Baron Eswege, commanding the corps of Royal Engineers at Villa Rica, and who erected many public works of great ability in the mines.
a greenstone* of large size into several fragments, had danced round the veranda almost bereft of his senses. Bearing my disappointment as well as I could, and being promised plenty of specimens, if I would send from Villa Rica in the course of a week, I continued my journey, which now partook of a trading character, for I visited every hut and obtained every thing that was worth possessing. During this afternoon's ride I procured many interesting specimens of the talc slate, and after three leagues had been passed over, a sudden opening in the mountains afforded me the sight of a large hill covered with houses, which was pronounced to be Villa Rica. The track afterwards was on the ascent, and I finally entered the villa in the afternoon, after an unremitting journey of fifteen days from Rio de Janeiro.
15th September.—Early this morning I received a visit from a young Englishman, who had established himself in the city as a physician, and with him took a walk through some of the chief streets. We passed the palace, a large building erected on the highest part of the hill, the cadeia or prison, and I counted
twelve churches. On my return I received a visit from Captain Penna, of the Engineers, with whom I had formed an acquaintance in Rio de Janeiro: he afterwards accompanied me to the palace, and presented me to the governor, D. Manuel de Portugal e Castro, Who received me with great civility and attention. After leaving his excellency I called on the Juez de Fora, and returned to the miserable estalagem, but the best which was to be obtained, the town being full of the electors from the different commarcas, to choose the deputies for the province. I met at dinner several distinguished mineiros and padres, from whom I obtained as much local information as possible; but the most interesting subject was that which, for the first time, they had been called upon to exercise, namely, the election of deputies to proceed to Lisbon.
16th September.—I proceeded early this morning to Captain Penna's, and, after examining the large map of the Minas Geraes, partly drawn under his inspection, looked over his cabinet of minerals. On my return I received a visit in the name of the governor, requesting me to dine with him. At four o'clock I proceeded to the palace, and soon
after sat down to dinner, which the governor made extremely agreeable by his information and gentlemanly manners. The company, consisting of twenty, were chiefly military men.
17th September.—Having sent the cangalha mules to pasture, in order to recover the fatigues of the journey, I commenced preparations for a short excursion in the neighbourhood with the English gentleman before mentioned. I proceeded alone along a road formed on a ledge of the mountain, which was bored and excavated in a most extraordinary manner in search of the precious metal. My intention was to visit in the first instance the city of Mariana, and then proceeding easterly towards Piranga, make a circuit and return to Villa Rica. The road to Mariana, a distance of four leagues, is almost one entire line of houses, and, on reaching the extremity of the mountain of Villa Rica, the city of Mariana appeared in the valley, which was traversed by a small river.
I was conducted to a small inn near the bridge, in the centre of the town. The houses appeared well built, the streets wide and regular, abounding in good shops, and the
palace of the bishop and the seminario, or college, were handsome edifices. The bishop was, unfortunately for me, absent making a visitation in his diocese. A considerable portion of the population seemed occupied in the manufacture of coarse cotton articles. The banks of the river had been disturbed and turned up in a singular manner in the search of gold. At night a large wood on fire on the bank of the river illuminated the whole town.
Tuesday, 18th September.—An examination of the barometer showed that the site of the city was much less elevated than Villa Rica.
Quitting Mariana, I began to ascend the mountain immediately on the west, called Itacolumi; the most elevated point in this part of the province. The road was excessively rugged, and might be considered more as the gulley of a stream, than a regularly formed path. On turning round after an ascent of two hours, the view of the mountain of Villa Rica, and the valley of Mariana, with its winding river, was perfectly enchanting, Talc slate showed itself in many spots in the ascent. I left the mule at the point where the road crosses, and proceeded on foot to the highest part, which appeared formed of a ferro-mi-
caceous slate, traversed by quartz veins. After reaching a spot called Alto da Pedra, I was joined by the physician, and we proceeded towards Maynerte, the earth on each hand lying in heaps, from having undergone an examination for gold. We at length reached the river of Maynerte, and shortly afterwards a large fazendo with a chapel. Here we determined to remain for the night, having performed three leagues from Mariana. We spent some hours in shooting, but were not very successful. On our return to the fazenda, we found the vicar of Barbacena, as well as the commandante of that town, who contributed not a little to render the evening agreeable
19th September.—A thick fog prevailed this morning; taking our leave of the vicar and his companion, the doctor and myself proceeded through the woods towards Mange Leguas. At first, the track was nothing but the bed of a mountain stream, excessively ragged and bad, but we afterwards proceeded through a dense wood, which the light of the sun could not penetrate: clusters of unripe maracujas, (fruit of the passion-flower), over hung the path in some places, and in others
the large brilliant scarlet flowers were alone met with. After passing the fazenda of a Padre Joaquim, we hastened on to Mange Leguas, killing by the way some beautiful green parrots. As my friend the doctor was well acquainted with the owner of this fazenda, Captain Couto, and in fact attended him professionally, we determined to remain there for the night, and visit the following morning a gold mine which belonged to him, about a league distant. The captain received us very hospitably, and promised to conduct us to his lavra in the morning. After the introduction in the court, I remained on the outside while the doctor entered with his patient and heard the state of his health. The latter then insisted on my entering the room where his wife and the doctor were in consultation. I remonstrated in vain, and had great difficulty in restraining my laughter while the lady expressed her chief wish to the physician, that of possessing a son and heir; but one little likely, I should think, to be accomplished, from the sickly state of the parties. As soon as the consultation was finished, the lady conducted me over the house, which consisted of a large hall, a kind of state room, and four or five sleeping apart-
ments. The ceilings were all formed of taqurra, or bamboo cane split, and from the current of air which is able to pass, they tend much to keep the rooms cool. All the Brazilian fazendas have one large room, containing a table of the commonest workmanship with a bench, and perhaps a large old clock. The state room boasts probably of half a dozen cane chairs, and a glass case, containing a figure of our Saviour or the Virgin. The sleeping apartments contain cane bedsteads, and mattresses filled with a kind of grass, or parasitic plant. Such, with slight differences, is the interior of all the fazendas. A very small space was enclosed on one side of the house, as a kitchen garden; it contained little else than cabbages.
Towards eight o'clock in the evening, the supper was served, to the great joy of the doctor and myself; for, excepting a little mandioca flour, we had eaten nothing since the morning. It consisted of meat, (charqueado, jerked,) fried with greens; a large dish of ungu (boiled Indian corn flour); a dish of salted pork (lombo) broiled; a plate of rice; canjica (boiled Indian corn without the husk); and a dish called fubá, which is Indian corn
flour stirred up with hot water. Marmalade and Figueras wine completed the repast. Being the greatest stranger, I was placed at the head of the table, and the appetites of the host and his lady certainly did not indicate disease. My arm was fatigued with carving. After the repast, a negro with a towel hanging over his shoulder, brought in a silver basin and ewer, and poured water on our hands; we then retired for the night.
Our host and hostess deserve a few words, for they were, in common terms, a very odd couple. The captain, ruined by disease, seldom smiled or spoke. His wife, about thirty, was remarkably thin, and also unwell; but, as she said herself, had no rheumatism in her tongue, for she spoke with a volubility, which made me at first suppose her mad. Whether long continued illness had affected our poor host's reflecting faculties, I know not; but I could gain little information from him. He said, that he paid no attention to the increase of his blacks by marriage, that he left to nature: that from the moment a man became free, he worked no longer; and that as soon as the slave trade should be abolished, the Brazilian mines could be no longer worked.
20th September.—A very thick fog prevailed this morning. The thermometer 74°. Soon after seven o'clock we sat down to break-fast, which consisted of the same dishes as the supper of the preceding evening, with the addition of coffee and milk. About an hour after, we got the captain well wrapped up, and set off for the lavra. It consists of a large excavation in the side of a mountain, which is kept free from water by means of pumps, formed of a long series of wooden cogs passing up a square trough called a macácu. These pumps, in common use in all the mines, are worked both by hand and by water, and closely resemble the irrigating machines in use among the Chinese.
The gold in this mine exists in combination with arsenical and iron pyrites, and disseminated yellowish oxide of bismuth, in a vein of quartz traversing chlorite and mica slates. The dust and small fragments of the ore are carried in bowls to the washing trough, while the larger masses, raised by levers, after they have been separated by blowing,* are conveyed to the stampaing mill, and reduced to
* Sawdust in the proportion of half is mixed with the gunpowder.
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powder. This mill consisted of two stampers armed with iron, which descended on a stone, and was moved by water: it was under cover, and close to the residence of the overseer. The gold which was exhibited to me did not appear of very good quality; it was washed before me, which is perhaps more gratifying to the traveller: but as the law only permits five oitavos of gold to remain in the house in dust, the owner generally pretends that he has none to show but what is to be taken from the bowls then washing. The name of this mine is Cayubá, and it frequently yields twenty oitavos per day: it has been long worked, and the captain draws, and will long continue to draw, a considerable revenue from it. The establishment consists of thirty negros, with a white overseer. After spending several hours in the mine, and procuring many characteristic specimens, we returned to the house. Shortly after dinner, we mounted our mules, and hastened on to the fazenda of Bandeira, belonging to the capitāo môr, which we reached in the evening. The Conde de Palma having given me a letter of introduction to this gentleman, he received me in the kindest manner, and expressed regret that
my stay would not extend beyond the following day
The title of capitāo môr is conferred on the person of the most wealth and consideration in the comarca. The neighbours recommend him as a fit and proper person to be capitāo môr; and this nomination, when backed by the governor of the province, is confirmed by the king. The privileges attached to the office are inconsiderable, and no salary is granted. It is a post of honour and dignity.
This gentleman had various possessions in different parts of the capitania, from which he might draw a considerable revenue. He raised mandioca (the sweet species), coffee, sugar, rice, and Indian corn; but his chief occupation was the care and increase of his slaves. He informed me that few fazenderos used the same piece of land for more than two consecutive years; after which, it was allowed to cover itself with brush wood, until a fresh burning restored its fertility: he considered the sides of hills to be the most favourable for rice, and that upon the whole the most advantageous article to plant was coffee. From agriculture the conversation turned to the va-
rious imposts paid in the interior of Brazil; such as the decima (10 per cent. on all sales and purchases); dizimos, tithes; the fifths of gold, and the duties on various articles on their introduction into the province; all of which he seemed to consider most oppressive. We carried the news to him of his election as deputy to the Cortes for the Minas Geraes, with which he seemed much flattered, although he declared at the same time his inability to proceed to Lisbon, from the indifferent state of his health.
21st September.—After breakfast we proceeded round the farm of the capitāo môr. Our first visit was to the sugar mill, which is formed of two upright cylinders armed with cogs, through which the canes are twice passed: they are made entirely of wood, without the admixture of any metal. Much of the juice is converted into spirits. The cane requires here fifteen months to come to perfection, while in the lower and warmer situations of Brazil, nine suffice. The planting takes place in June, and the canes are cut in September.
We next saw a machine for rasping mandioca, and then passed to the huts of the slaves, on whom he dedicates the greatest part
of his time. The huts were clean and well arranged, and I think I noticed in every one a woman with an infant. The capitā môr assured me that, owing to his attention, the slaves had doubled in fifteen years. From the general system of atôa connections (chance connections) in Brazil, the increase among the slave population is very slow. Senhor D. Alvez has no slaves unmarried; he bestows a house on each couple, and requires no work from the women for five months previous to and after confinement. He has manumitted many, and he told me, that from love to him they will work; but he corroborated what Captain Couto said respecting the general conduct of free negros.
After leaving the slave houses, we came to a saw mill moved by water. The capitāo môr's woods being extensive, he cuts down some very fine timber, principally the white and red paroba, and sawing it up, places it under sheds to dry. In answer to my inquiry, he informed me, that he cut timber all the year round without distinction of season, and that he could discover no difference between that cut in the summer and winter months.
His garden abounded in the common vegetabels of Europe and in seletta oranges, which, although very good, were not equal to those of Rio de Janeiro. After seeing every thing this amiable man had to show us, we took out leave, and bent our steps towards the city. The road at first led through thick woods, where we killed some beautiful birds, and afterwards by the most rugged paths to a small inhabited spot called Chapada. In the course of the ride we noticed much mica and talc slates. Rain now commenced in torrents, and continued without cessation all night. About 7 o'clock we descended the mountain into the valley of Villa Rica, which we crossed, and ascending again we entered the town at nine o'clock. We found that the provisional government had been installed during our absence, and his excellency Dom M. de Portugal e Castro named president.
23d September.—I made a short excursion to obtain specimens of wavellite. In proceeding towards the gunpowder manufactory, I noticed some black oxide of manganese investing some quartz; and near the lake the wavellite was pointed out to me in a stalactitic form, lying under the turf in the deep
red upper stratum of clay. Nodules of ferruginous quartz accompanied it.
I attended a ball in the evening given by the officers in garrison in consequence of the late change in the government. There was a sad preponderance of gentlemen, for there were only fourteen ladies.
24th September.—I took another walk round Villa Rica, and think, upon the whole, it is unlike any place I have before seen. It is partly built on the declivity of a mountain and partly in the valley beneath. The Riberāo de Carmo, which separatee the one part of the town from the other, is crossed by four small bridges. The Rua Direita, more than an English mile in length, extends along the side of the mountain to the most elevated extremity, where the palace is erected. This point commands a most magnificent view of the peak of Itacolumi and the chains of mountains which surround the isolated hill of Villa Rica. The Riberāo do Carmo, so celebrated for the quantity of gold it has produced, and whose waters, of a deep red muddy aspect, join those of the Rio Doce, still offers to the eye of the observer a few solitary negros, with a bowl, searching for gold, and picking up a miserable
and uncertain subsistence of a few vintems daily.
From the valley of the Carmo, no object can be more striking than Villa Rica. The mountain upon which it stands appears, from the base to the summit, absolutely like a honeycomb. Even in the most precipitous sides, large holes have been bored in the veins or nests of quartz; and frequently a small hut is perched at the entrance of one of these excavations, as if to prevent the ingress of interlopers. So pierced has this mountain been, that it ceases to be a matter of wonder that some years ago a very large portion of one side slipped down, and caused a dreadful loss of life.
There are few buildings worthy of note. The churches, about fourteen in number, many of which were erected by the vast wealth and piety of the first miners, have little to recommend them. The houses are generally built of stone, with tiled roofs, and of two stories, with heavy wooden balconies. Very little glass is used, owing, perhaps, to the difficulty of conveyance. The streets are well but roughly paved; and as it is impossible to proceed in any direction without ascending
or descending, they become excessively fatiguing to the feet. The usual common trades, such as shoemakers, tailors, and saddlers, abound; but almost every manufactured article is brought from Rio de Janeiro, eighty leagues distant, two or three times a week. In exchange for which, gold, precious stones, cotton of inferior quality, and coarse cotton clothe, cheese, bacon, and a few other articles, are sent down to the coast.
As Villa Rica may be considered the emporium of the Minas Geraes, and as the thoroughfare to the diamond district, and other parts in the interior of Brazil, there is still the appearance of much bustle; but it is quite evident from the deserted houses and general appearance of neglect, that it no longer boasts the population that it once contained, nor the affluence which at one time prevailed in such an extraordinary degree. No place exhibits a more interesting spectacle to the moralist than this. A large mountain, thickly veined with gold, draws, on that account, a population of upwards of thirty thousand persons, who, in the course of sixty or seventy years, exhaust its precious riches. With nothing else
to recommend it, the soil being very unproductive, and the immediate inhabitants little inclined by love of agriculture to endeavour to improve it, the population, at the end of a century, decreases to a third of its former number, and the streets and the palace, the governor, and the establishment, are alone left as monuments of the extraordinary riches which once prevailed. Poverty has now her full sway at Villa Rica; the streets swarm with mendicants, who, if diseased, confine themselves entirely to begging; but if in health, alternately try the bowl in the streams and the charity of the more affluent in the town.
This evening I attended a ball at the palace, which was excessively crowded and warm. The English country-dance prevailed the entire evening. I had another opportunity of observing how generally thin the ladies of the Minas are.
25th September. Early this morning I proceeded with Captain Penna, of the engineers, to visit the gold mine of Passagem. As this gentleman was a native of the diamond district, and was well acquainted with the coun-
try, I gained much information from him respecting the state of the savage tribes in the neighbourhood.
The Indians, who dwell within eighteen leagues of Villa Rica on the Rio Doce, are considered the most savage of all the tribes; for while the chief of the others have been more or less reduced to civilization, this race of Boticudus have never ceased to exhibit the most decided animosity to the Portuguese. There appear to be at least two tribes of Boticudus, the one, inhabiting the banks of the Rio Doce, the other the neighbourhood of the banks of the Rio Iigitonhonha,* in the diamond district. Captain Penna thinks that, in spite of some points of resemblance, the two tribes are perfectly distinct. Both of them place pieces of wood in the under lip and ears, but it appears that when the Portuguese employed some of the Boticudus to act as interpreters for them with the other family on the Rio Doce, and to endeavour to bring them to some terms of conciliation, they could not make themselves understood. In consequence of the enmity of these Indians, the attempt to navigate the Rio
* Two individuals of this tribe were exhibited not long since in London.
Doce has been very much impeded; for in the narrow defiles through which the river winds, large masses of rock are often hurled upon the helpless Creoles. Captain Penna firmly believes, that these Indians are anthropophagi, but that they eat only their enemies; and he adduced such instances as almost shook my faith upon this subject. With respect to their population, little is known; but since they live entirely by fishing and the chase, it may be fairly presumed that their number is very limited.
The puris and the coroados, the latter so called from the hair being worn at the top of the head in the shape of a crown, have been brought into a state of civilization; more particularly the latter, who seem to have now forgotten many of their savage customs. A French officer in the Portuguese service, Captain Guido Malriere, has commanded for some time one of the divisions on the confines of the Indians; and besides treating them with much kindness, and thus obtaining a great influence over them, he has collected large materials for a work upon their languages.
The road to passagem I had before travelled on my visit to Mariana. It ran along the ledge
of the mountain, which I have already mentioned, is bored in so extraordinary a manner. The valley on the right, with the Rio do Carmo wandering through it, boasts of a few banana trees and a little cultivation. The distance to Passagem, situate on the eastern extremity of the morro of Villa Rica, is about a league.
This mine belongs to a company with a capital of 20,000 crusadoes; and the establishment consists of three overseers and thirty-eight negros. During the residence of the Baron Eswege, the superintendence was confided to him; but since his departure, my conductor, Captain Penna, had the care of it. Hitherto it has merely paid its expenses, the shareholders having divided nothing.
On entering the gate we found botryoidal manganese with octaedral crystals of magnetic iron in a ferro-micaceous rock. We then descended to the mill: there were nine stampers, which reduced the ore to a coarse powder: it was then removed, and levigated between two horizontal plates of iron, all moved by water. It was intended to erect a furnace to roast the ore, as it was thought that the gold in some instances existed in a state of chemical combination. Behind the engenho the forge and
the houses for the overseers and the slaves were erected.
Light being procured, we descended by long passages to the depth of about a hundred feet. These passages, which have been chiseled and blown through a mica slate, are in places extremely wet from the cog pumps (macácus) getting deranged, and Penna seemed of opinion that the mine would never be kept free from water until there was a passage worked through to the opposite side, where there is a narrow but deep valley, into which the water, having served the purposes of the mill, ultimately runs.
The metaliferous veins from six inches to one yard in width, run entirely through this part of the mountain; they consist of quartz, containing shorl, arsenical and iron pyrites, gold, and arseniate of cobalt. For these substances the miners have their peculiar names: they imagine the arsenical pyrites to be formed of lead, and call it as such. The vein is conveyed to the mill in bowls on the head of negros. After quitting the mine, we descended the other side of the hill to examine a new opening in the mica slate. In the quartz vein I obtained crystals of carbonate of lime in
rhombs and tables, beautiful crystals of an apple green talc, and an abundance of cyanite in four-sided prisms.
One my return to the house, the overseer showed me some of the plants, the juice of which is squeezed into the bowls containing gold, to carry down the lighter particles. There were several plants in common use for this purpose; but the one generally preferred, from its containing more juice, was called itambámba; it appeared to me to be a solanum. The leaves had a bitter taste and gummy fell, and I apprehend the juice can only act mechanically.
After packing the numerous specimens I obtained in banana leaves, we set off on our return to Villa Rica. The road was in places covered with pieces of pale blue cyanite; and the scales of the ferro-micaceous slate glistened on every side like the finest brilliants. In this rock we discovered some hematitic iron.
26th September.—I went in search this morning of some specimens of oxide of calamine, which I found encrusting the micaceous quartz slate; the specimens were not very good. Rosario, whom I had dispatched the preceding day to the topaz mine, returned
with a few specimens, which e had purchased.
In the province of the Minas Geraes the money is always calculated in oitavos, each oitavo being worth twelve hundred reis. The copper coins of Rio de Janeiro pass current with an additional value, if they are stamped with an M.; the piece of forty reis; then passes for seventy-five. There is a general want of metallic currency in the mines, which is attempted to be remedied by paper, which it is difficult to get changed.
27th September.—Having possessed some slight opportunity of examining the climate of Villa Rica, I shall now proceed to detail its peculiarities. The mean of the barometer during my residence was 26.393, and of the thermometer 69½°. From these observations the elevation of the palace square would be about 3,969 feet about the sea. The mean of the grains of vapour contained in the cubic foot was 6.577. The prevailing winds were from the south and south-east. During the winter months, a thick fog prevails until about 10 or 11 o'clock every morning, and on some occasions all day.
This elevation is too considerable for the
production of many of the fine fruits which abound in Rio de Janeiro. Bananas and oranges are cultivated; but they prove small and badly flavoured: the maracuja will scarcely ripen, and the pineapple is no longer met with. Quinces, apples, and some other European fruits, succeed tolerably well. In consequence of this, the ladies of the Minas are excessively fond of showing their skill in making preserves, to which all classes are so partial, that fruit in a crude state is seldom eaten. Nothing is more common than a present of sweetmeats from the ladies; it must however be eaten, come when it may, in the presence of their mulatto or black slaves, and praised immoderately. Whenever the governor proceeded on a tour of inspection, all sorts of fêtes were prepared for him. He told me, that at one place there was an arbour formed entirely of sweetmeats, under which himself and two of his suite could conveniently stand.
Although the Mineiros boast much of the salubrity of the climate, and complain that the heat of the coast is destructive to their health, it appeared to me that the province was unhealthy, and the English physician confirmed me in this idea. Consumption, and
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all diseases of the lungs, syphilis, a variety of diseases of the skin, and wens, were very common. I observed several goats in the streets attacked with the latter complaint. The mode of life has, no doubt, much influence on some of these diseases. Little or no fresh meat is consumed in Villa Rica. All the animal food is salted and frequently rancid when used.
28th September.—I shall now give a short account of the geological formation of the morro of Villa Rica.—This mountain stretches from east, to west about two leagues, and is surrounded on all sides by others, which exhibit, as far as I had an opportunity of examining, the same geological facts.
In the journey from Rio de Janeiro I had traced the gneiss variously modified, but finely grained, of a grey colour, and generally in a decomposing state. Excepting on the summit of the Serra da Estrella, where there existed a bed of greenstone, immediately resting on the gneiss, and in some other places, where I observed sienite and greenstone slate, on other extensive formation was met with. On approaching Villa Rica, other rocks presented themselves to view, all of
them, with the exception of the talc and mica states, more or less auriferous. Confining myself now to the mountain of Villa Rica, which, on many accounts, is highly interesting. I shall endeavour to adapt the few observations I shall make to the common reader, and will not at this time enter into those minutiæ, which would be only of consequence to a few.
The morro of the Villa Rica may be said to consist almost entirely of a primary micaceous quartz slate, resting on gneiss and mica slate. Occasionally, clay slate intervenes between the gneiss and the quartz slate, and sometimes the mica slate is entirely wanting. A regular passage appears to exist both from the gneiss and the mica slate into the overlying rock. At Passagem, the lower part of the mine is formed of a dark coloured mica slate, but on ascending, the mica changes colour, finally disappears, and the rock takes the character of a simple quartz rock.
This micaceous quartz slate puts on a variety of aspects. Very low down it contains a larger portion of mica, and the grains of silex are more regular. In this state it is called the elastic sandstone of Villa Rica. Higher up in
the mountain it partakes more of the characters of a simple rock, being tolerably compact, granular, stained in spots with iron, and devoid of elasticity. The grains are occasionally as large as small peas, and enveloped in a finer matter. This formation is intersected by veins and nests of quartz, which do not seem to have in any way disturbed the stratification of the rock. Contrary to what is generally remarked of quartz rock, this formation is eminently metalliferous, and the numerous holes and excavations made in the veins of quartz have been rewarded by the discovery of large quantities of gold. The direction of the micaceous quartz slate is rather to the northward of east, and the dip varies in different places, but generally highly inclined— about 60°.
About two hundred feet up the mountain, large masses of talc slate are embedded, and frequently cover the rock just described. This slate is of a whitish, or lead colour; and immediately in contact with it, another rock, which I have named a ferro-micaceous slate, is generally seen to rest. Sometimes this slate has only a very slight tinge of iron; at other times it exists perfectly decomposed, and puts
on the appearance of decayed wood. Frequently the mica appears completely lost, and the slate takes all the characters of micaceous iron, and is essentially an ore, and worked as such. When it assumes this form, a blow with a hammer on the strata causes a quantity of fine white sand to issue from beneath the lamina. In some spots, one or other of these beds is often wanting. In the talc slate, no gold has been found.
The beds of talc slate and ferro-micaceous slate follow, in their dip and direction, the great underlying formation of the micaceous quarts slate.
The same new formation which I have had repeatedly cause to mention, the deep red clay which envelops the wavellite, masses of clayironstone, hematite, and ferruginous quartz, and which, between the two ridges of the Estrella and Mantiqueira, lies immediately over the gneiss, covers at Villa Rica the talc slate and the ferro-micaceous slate.
29th September.—I left Villa Rica early this morning to pay a visit to Mr. Roque Shüch, librarian to Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal; at his house at Timbopeba, about three leagues and a half distant in a nor-
therly direction. After crossing the ridge on the right of the town, I came to a hill of micaceous iron ore, and, after a long and unpleasant descent over beds of brown oxide of iron, arrived at the village of Antonio Perreira. It is built on the bank of a river of the same name, which has produced large quantities of gold. I met Mr. Shüch here on his road to the Villa, but he was so polite as to turn back with me to Timbopeba, a league distant. The day was so oppressively hot that we rejoiced not a little in getting shelter in his house. This gentleman was on the point of establishing an iron manufactory. His smelting furnace was constructed out of the mica slate of the neighbourhood, which contained much cyanite. The ore which he intended to smelt was micaceous iron, some acres being covered with it to the depth of ten yards.
30th September.—After collecting a number of specimens of fibrous actynolite, magnetic iron ore, iron glance, and many specimens of granular sulphate of strontian, which formed a large hummock, lying on clay slate, I set off with Dr. shüch for Villa Rica. On our return to Antonio Perreira we fell in with primitive limestone: and some specimens of
the same substance with sulphur: dolomite in great abundance, both granular and lamellar, cupreous arseniate of iron, brown iron ore, hematite, and acicular manganese. No spot could be more abundant in mineralogical riches,* and the mule I took with me purposely, groaned under the weight. I entered Villa Rica in the afternoon.
* This is the locality of the specimen of brown iron ore, which contains in the centre of some scoratide a small dodecaedral diamond. This is the only true matrix of the diamond that has been discovered. It was purchased by Mr. Heuland from Baron Eswege.
Excursion to the Gold Mines of the Rio das Velhas.—Feiticeria.—Gold Mine of Padre Freitas at Congonhas—Sabará.—Caeté.—St. Joāo.—Cattas Altas.—Gold Mine of Guarda Mor Innocencio.—Enficionado.—Death of Rosario.—Arrial at Villa Rica.—Return to Rio de Janeiro and to England.
HAVING determined to visit as many of the gold mines as the shortness of my stay would permit, I spent the 1st of October in making preparations for a journey in the direction of Sabará. I obtained various letters of introduction to the chief mining proprietors on the route. The evening was passed with Captain Guido Malriere, of whom I have before spoken He had arrived, fortunately for me, the day before from his village.
2d October.—Owing to a variety of delays, I did not leave the praca of Villa Rica until twelve o'clock. I quitted the town by the westerly entrance, and then turning towards the north, ascended for a league and a half by a very indifferent road. The stratified quartz
rock exhibited itself beautifully in the ascent. About half a league farther, at a spot called Henrique, I found some acicular crystals of black tourmaline, with a dark coloured ferruginous quartz. The road continued on the high ground, and leading through much wood until within half a league of Casabranca, a small village where I had predetermined to pass the night. A thunder-storm commenced, but I reached the estallagem before it had descended with much violence. One of the Cangalha mules just before the storm commenced, stood still; but towards the afternoon changed its mind, arrived, and was fed with the rest.
At this house, as well as at the fazendas I had visited, the common oil used for lamps was that of the castor nut.
Supper being completed, I had just laid down for the night, when Colonel B. arrived from Villa Rica, but seeing the room pretty well filled, to my great joy, he proceeded another league. I had known him in the villa, and he had a sad character of appropriating the mules and horses of others.
3d October.—We collected the mules and took the road to Sabará: at the end of a
league we arrived, by an excellent mule track, at a spot called Pirez, where we remained a short time. After quitting this spot we passed through some thick woods, and then emerged upon hills of considerable height, merely covered with grass. The ravines exposed mica slate with veins of smoky quartz.
I had some amusing conversation in the course of the ride with my tropeiro, who wore a charm about his neck, which Rosario had shown me while he was asleep, and in which it was evident he placed considerable faith. I learned from him that every one in the country wore some charm or other, either to render the bearer fortunate in his undertakings, or as a protection from the darts of Cupid or the boa constrictor. As I conducted myself with becoming gravity, I extracted from the tropeiro the common method of making a most efficacious charm. "You must take," said he, "such a piece of iron as this, (it was magnetic iron ore,) and steep it for twenty-four hours in milk; repeating every four hours these words—Do your duty, or you shall not be fed.—Then place the iron in white wine for twenty-four hours, which it will render turbid, a satisfactory proof," added the tropeiro,
"that it has become vivified: next proceed to a blacksmith's, and obtaining some iron filings, feed the iron with them once a day. Now you possess one of the most efficacious charms, and one that I have used for many years." The tropeiro then gave me some advice about shaving; not to allow any particle of my beard to get into strange hands, for fear of the recurrence of an accident which once nearly became fatal to a gentleman he knew very well. A lady, continued he, fell in love with a gentleman who did not answer her suit: finding him inexorable, she bribed his black servant to give her some of his master's beard. The negro took the bribe, but deceived the sorceress by giving her a few black hairs from a hide which lay in one corner of the room. The same evening, to the horror and dismay of the gentleman, the hide jumped up and made a rush towards the door: the slave then made a confession of what had occurred; and the door being opened, the hide instantly departed, and was followed over two prickly pear hedges to the house of the lady. The latter, on hearing a noise at the door, concluded that she had triumphed over the obduracy of the gentleman; but on lifting the latch, found how she
had been deceived by the negro. The punishment awarded to this feiticeira was a whipping at the door of the church.
Such were the stories of the tropeiro, in which he and all the inhabitants of the country put the firmest belief, and in which I seemingly acquiesced.
We arrived about four o'clock at Coxo de Agua, having completed five long leagues; the latter part of the journey was extremely mountainous. I noticed many cashew trees during the day. The fruit was unripe; it serves here as the food of partridges.
In the evening the landlord of the fazenda brought me the rattles of a snake which he had killed the day before. He informed me that this species was very common in the neighbourhood, and that few fazendeiros lost less than two or three slaves annually from their bites. This individual was about seven feet long, and it had nine rattles on the tail, on which account he calculated its age at nine years. Observation appears to have taught the fazendeiros that the rattle-snake acquires an additional rattle every time it changes its skin.
4th October.—The landlord of the fazenda.
a free negro, carries on the occupation of a blacksmith, and thus contrives to make a good livelihood. He plants mandioca, rice and feijoē;s (beans). He has tried wheat, but found that it was always destroyed by ferrugem (smut.) This is very generally the case in the Minas Geraes. The rice requires five months to ripen; and coffee he did not plant, as it demanded too much attention. I observed at this fazenda many rats of the common breed. I had not seen any since leaving Pampulha.
A long descent conducted us, after quitting Coxo de Agua, to the bank of the Rio das Velhas, a very considerable stream, which has produced and yet produces large quantities of gold. The banks were covered with wood, and the current (like all auriferous streams) slow and muddy. The heat of this day was intense, and independently of the appearance of the barometer, it was evident, from the quality of the vegetation, that we had descended considerably since leaving Villa Rica.
We arrived at the small village of San Antonio; and on entering a house while the mules obtained some water, I very innocently seated myself on a chest. In a moment the
master, his wife and an old black woman, rushed towards me and made me rise in a moment, telling me that I ought to inquire what was inside of a box before I thought of sitting on it; for I had seated myself on a saint, on the figure of San Antonio himself. I soon convinced them how inadvertently I had acted, and then proceeded to the village of Santa Rita, where I picked up some sandstone, very prettily striped. The small villages which I had passed during the ride of this day, afforded sad proofs of the decadence of the gold mines: many of the houses were half ruined, and the churches gone to decay. The road was extremely mountainous, sometimes we crept along the edge of the river, and a mile farther on could just discover it glistening below us. We met many blacks and mulattoes with wens: few of those born on the coast of Africa are afflicted with it. We crossed at length to the left bank of the river by means of a wooden bridge, and passing an extensive lavra on the left hand, reached the village of Congonhas de Sabará. I remained here some time before I proceeded to the gold mine of Padre Antonio Freitas, to whom I had a letter of introduction. I observed some flax growing
near the village, and with some difficulty procured specimens of the thread. It appeared strong, owing perhaps to the bleaching process being unknown.
I reached at length the house of the Padre Freitas, and going to the main door, was conducted to a smaller house on one side, where I waited the arrival of the reverend gentleman. After presenting the letter of introduction, he conversed a short time, recommended me to the care of an old gentleman (a fellow traveller) and then took leave. After a short time another priest, called Padre Joaquim, made his appearance, a short pale faced young man, the nephew of my host. (I do not remember ever knowing a priest without two or three nephews and nieces, left orphans, poor things, de pay e may.) With this gentleman I proceeded to the gold works.
They are situated in an immense quebrada, or ravine, which has been worked almost through the heart of a mountain of chlorite slate, intersected by quartz veins, in which the gold exists in combination with arsenical and iron pyrites. The chlorite slate, which is highly inclined, also contains gold in the proximity of the veins, and, as well as the quartz veins,
is carried to the stamping mill. The walls of the mine are encrusted with white acicular crystals of sulphate of alumine, but I inferred from the taste, of a very impure nature; they probably contain iron or arsenic.
The Padre has erected five stamping mills at different periods: they are progressively powerful, and the ore is pounded by two before it arrives at a third and last. The larger blocks are split by means of gunpowder, but if that article is scarce, the masses are heated by fire, and water is then thrown over them.
As far as I could judge from the eye, for the great slave owners pretend they do not know how many slaves they possess, there appeared about seventy slaves employed in the various occupations of quarrying, carrying, and washing; and with these means and powerful water mills, the quantity of gold produced was large. The overseer told me that he had never deposited at night, in the dwelling house, a less quantity than twenty-five oitavos, but that it generally exceeded thirty. The expenses he calculated at one and a half oitavo per week for each slave employed. This sum was sufficient to cover every expense of
purchase, machinery, and food. The gold is considered of low toque, as it seldom exceeds nineteen carats.
The super-stratum of the chlorite slate, consisting of the debris of quartz, iron, and red earth, had been disturbed by the earlier miners.
After my return to the travellers' house, I employed myself in ticketing and arranging the specimens which Padre Joaquim had loaded me with. His uncle towards supper time sent a message to inform me that he had a bad head-ache, and was sorry he could not attend me. The old gentleman and myself did not regret his absence, for the allowance at supper was very scanty.
As several gentlemen had visited this country as naturalists, sent by various courts of Europe, and as the chief part of them had taken the degree of Doctor, it was very common to give the title of Doutor Naturalista to any foreigner who paid attention to minerals or plants. This honour had been often conferred on me, but I had hitherto escaped any practical inconvenience for allowing it to pass. This evening, however, Padre Joaquim consulted me, first respecting a disease which had manifested itself among the slaves, and secondly, regarding himself, and when I declared
VOL. II. T
that I knew nothing of medicine, and should perhaps only poison him if I assumed the character of physician, he went away evidently disappointed. Many others retired with him who had been previously lounging about the door, and I afterwards heard there were several leprous patients in attendance in the court; but finding that the doutor naturalista would neither prescribe for the young padre nor for the old padre's slaves, they departed to their homes. The specimens of gold I packed up without delay, and determined to set out the next morning.
5th October.—A dreadful thunder-storm prevailed all night. Padre Freitas came early, and his head-ache being better he breakfasted with us. The repast was not abundant; I had however much conversation with him, but he constantly reverted to politics after I had succeeded in drawing him off to more interesting topics. He did not know how many slaves he possessed, but I ascertained from him that the mine had been constantly worked since the year 1725, and that his father bought it for 150,000 crusados, which it soon repaid. The padre then entered into long disquisitions on the riches of the country, &c. in the midst of which he was interrupted by a slave, who
came with a message da senhora, from his mistress. Without the least wish to be severe, I cannot avoid remarking that the Brazilian padres in the mines lead very dissolute lives; they never admit strangers into their houses, so that their mode of life is to some extent concealed; but generally their conduct to their slaves is sensual in the extreme to one sex, and cruel to the other. It was thought proper by the Portuguese government, many years since, to prohibit the entrance of religious orders into the province of the mines, for fear they should obtain possession of extensive estates and from their mode of proceeding reduce the royal duties. The ecclesiastical offices are therefore entirely filled by secular priests, generally large owners, who undergo an examination at Mariana, and shaving the top of their heads become padres. They then pursue a system of unrestrained licentiousness, and as there is little difference between them, and as they reside in the woods at a distance from the bishop, there is no one to call them to account and inflict ecclesiastical censure.*
* My tropeiro saw the lady who drew forth these remarks, he described her as being very beautiful, with handsome black eyes, è bem gorda (and extremely fat).
About ten o'clock I left the gold mine of Congonhas da Sabará, and proceeding over some considerable hills well covered with wood, the Rio das Velhas was again skirted, and on rounding a morro, the large town of Sabará came in sight. This place, long since elevated to the rank of villa, owes its celebrity to the riches of the Rio das Velhas, and to the mineral veins in the neighbourhood. It has been termed the centre of the gold washings. It is chiefly built on the left bank of the river, over which there is a wooden bridge, and as the situation is low, and surrounded on all sides by hills, the heat is intense. There is a small manufacture carried on in rude gold ornaments.
After visiting the Juez da Fora, I examined the situation of the town. The heat was scarcely to the borne; in the cool house the thermometer stood at 87°.
6th October.—The air was cooler this morning owing to a thunder-storm which raged all night. I procured here several skins of great length of the sucuriu (boa constrictor), which are common a little farther down the river. I procured some deer-skins as well. As soon as the mules were laden, I proceeded towards Caeté, and traversed another considerable por-
tion of Sabará, which stretches along the banks of the river; a wooden bridge conducted me over to the right bank. Sabará appeared fast going to decay; many of the houses are falling down, and the grass literally covers some of the streets.
Along the banks of the Rio das Velhas there are many gold washings, but no other mines than those already described. At every turn of the river a few washers meetthe eye: it is the common employment, and when a fazendeiro has little occupation in the farm for his slaves, he sends them out in search of gold. We passed through the village of Pompeo by a long ascent to Cuyabá. Near this place the chlorite slate traversed by broad quartz veins exhibited itself beautifully. The upper soil, about six inches thick, was formed of broken fragments of quartz, lying with extraordinary regularity. In the course of the day we met many horrible objects with wens, chiefly blacks and mulattoes. On descending the hill towards Caeté, I fell in with some large masses of serpentine, lying on the surface of the soil.
We entered the villa of Caeté, with which I was more pleased than with Sabará. It is built in a valley, down which a beautiful stream
pours, and renders the banks singularly fruitful. The houses, to the number of about two thousand, are well built, and the churches are neat; one of the latter, as is generally the case in most catholic towns, unfinished. I first rode to the house of a capitāo, José d'Almeida, who directed me to an inn. I had scarcely got settled there before he sent a large plate of a fine fruit like a cherry, which is produced by a tree like a myrtle, and then came and complimented me himself. He afterwards presented me with a specimen of the deep yellow gold of Gongosoco, which contains palladium. It is raised from what is termed the formacāo preta, or black formation, which is, in fact, micaceous iron.
Within an hour after my arrival, a thunderstorm commenced, being now a circumstance of daily occurrence. Late in the evening vespers were sung in a very agreeable manner in the house adjoining.
7th October.—I departed early for Gongosoco; the track lay over hills devoid of timber, but covered with that description of grass called capim mellado. A league from Caeté I visited a gold mine, which the feitor told me was eighty fathoms deep. The gangue was
quartz traversing chlorite slate, which afterwards lost its colour and became talc slate. It appeared to me a very poor ore; I could obtain no specimens as the owner was absent, and being Sunday, the slaves were not at work. From this spot I proceeded in an easterly direction, through thick woods, to Gongosoco, situate on the banks of a river, the sands of which are perfectly black. The owner of the mine was unfortunately absent, and I obtained no more specimens of this formation; a disappointment I was not prepared to bear, after going two leagues out of the track to obtain them.
I continued my journey along the banks of this stream, the earth on each side having been turned up in pursuit of gold. When I consider the many square leagues I have passed over, which present in this particular the same aspect, I cannot help wondering that in so small a space of time as 120 years, there have been hands and industry sufficient to give the soil its present riddled appearance. I hastened on to the village of St. Joāo, which was visible at a considerable distance, on account of its very handsome and elevated church, which bore little proportion to the smallness of the
village. There were only two decent looking houses in the place, one of them of course belonged to the vigario, and I was confirmed in the idea by seeing some white ladies in the balconies, nieces or comadres,* it is to be presumed.
The weather had been so hot for the last week that the whole party was more or less indisposed. My man Rosario and Adam the black were great invalids. The tropeiro and I were less so. Such being the case, I determined to lose no time in returning to Villa Rica, where medical assistance might be procured.
8th October.—It was quite lamentable to notice the decayed state of the villages which I had passed through during the last few days, simply because the inhabitants will not forsake a pursuit which is no longer profitable, and turn their attention to the rich soil which abounds, and which would amply repay the labour bestowed on it. Agriculture seems
* The term comadre is applied to the female by those who stand sponsors with her; she is madrinha or godmother to the infant, and comadre to them. Ever after great intimacy exists between the compadres and comadres; they become related in the eye of the church, and a marriage could not be solemnized between them without much difficulty.
entirely neglected, and the consequences are extreme poverty and wretchedness. In caeté there was a general want of Indian corn; and although the richest pastures abound, no fresh meat can be procured.
I left St. Joāo as early as the invalid state of the party would permit, and continued my journey on the bank of the river, over the little mounds formed by former gold washers. The country took the features of downs, and no cultivation was apparent. We passed through Brumado, a spot in a state of decay, and a league distant from St. Joāo; thence over very high downs without wood or cultivation, but admirably adapted for sheep, to the village of Cattas Altas. It is built on the point of a range of grotesque formed mountains of mica-slate, much higher than the elevated road which we traversed.
We remained a short time in this village to refresh the mules. Sending them forward on the direct road to Mariana, I struck off to the right to examine some gold mines which were worked on the slope of the mountains. The first mine I arrived at was that of the Guarda Môr Innocencio. After presenting a few lines of introduction to him, he received me very
civilly and sent a man with me to show the works. This mine is like many I have before described, a large excavation open to the heavens in the side of the mountain. The upper stratum is red ochrey earth of about twenty feet thick; underneath follows the ferromicaceous slate, with the sand between the lamina, which exactly resembles the ore smelted at Timbopeba, and below that, compact magnetic or oxydulated iron ore. These lower beds were traversed by veins of ferruginous quartz, in immediate contract with which there was in most cases some specular iron in thin lamina. The gold existed in the quartz veins which were thin, but I understood that several nearly three feet across had been just covered up by a fall of the upper stratum. The quartz veins are alone consigned to the stamping mill. The larger masses are split by means of fire. I brought away some specimens, but they partook more of the character of iron than gold.
From this lavra I proceeded to another of exactly the same formation; the iron, however, containing a little gold, is stamped as well as the quartz.
Leaving this lavra I descended on the right to a village called Agua Quente, owing to a
warm spring which once existed there; but of late it has been covered up by a fall of earth. I found, however, an old man, who remembered persons resorting to drink the water which issued lukewarm (morne). He could not recollect whether it had any smell. Quitting Agua Quente, the road led down to the river, and thence through woods, which abounded in quantities of the most beautiful Cape jesmin and passion flowers, to the large village of Enficionado.
The estalagem was very unfortunately full, and we were forced to seek some other shelter. We went from house to house, and met with refusals, which at other times would have been rather a source of amusement, but now, with a person in a dangerous state of health, and after the fatigues of a very hot day, it became a more serious matter. Keeping Rosario in the back ground, I used all the elocution I was master of to gain an entrance, and I believe the title of Colonel, which the tropeiro gave me at the moment, prevailed on a woman to allow me to unload the mules at her door and occupy one of her rooms. The mules were extremely fatigued with the heat and would scarcely touch the corn.
Late in the evening Rosario became much
worse, and I began for the first time to despair of being able to convey him to Mariana, where medical advice could be obtained. Unknown to me he obtained some wine, which he drank with avidity, in the hope of obtaining relief, and I have no doubt it precipitated his fate. Adam and the tropeiro had perfectly recovered.
9th October.—Rosario was evidently weaker this morning. We managed to get a way from Enficionado about nine o'clock, and proceeded by a very good road and occasionally through woods, but generally over downs, as far as Bento Rodriguez. We met in the course of the day several of the inhabitants of the Minas Novas. They are dressed almost entirely in leather, and they generally wear a belt, from which are suspended two bamboos, the one containing brandy the other honey. The latter is very much in request all through the Minas, and no pains are spared to induce the bees to settle. Almost every farm-house has a log of decayed wood suspended near the roof to entice them to remain.
At Comargos I shot a bird called frango de campo, or wild hen. The head was very similar to that of the common fowl. On leaving this spot we met a troop of mules,
which left Porto d'Estrella the same day as we did, they had therefore been nearly six week on the journey. Shortly after parting with them we met a patrol, Who said he suspected I was the bearer of diamonds and gold in dust, and that he would return to the spot where I intended to remain, and then examine the trunks. After keeping by my side for ten minutes, and asking a few questions as to where I had been, he showed me his orders to search, and civilly rode off.
At seven o'clock we reached the small inhabited spot of Vamos Vamos, about half a mile from Mariana. Rosario, who had been rapidly declining all the afternoon, but who contrived nevertheless to keep his seat on the mule, was here taken excessively and alarmingly ill. I despatched the tropeiro into Mariana for a physician, and did in the mean time every thing I could think of to give him relief. It was in vain. Within a quarter of an hour after our arrival he was no more. I can hardly describe my distress at this event. He was a most excellent and obliging servant, and his loss seemed as much felt by the tropeiro and Adam as by myself.
About two hours after his decease I received
a visit from the bailiffs of Mariana to take possession of Rosario's effects. They did this by virtue of the law regarding os mortes e auzentes—the dead and absent. In every district there is an office to take charge of property coming under this description; and in some places the treasurer of such an establishment has a very lucrative post. Although the foundation of the law is excellent, as by means of it devastations on property are prevented, yet, owing to the inquisatorial nature of it, the people have strong prejudices against its exercise. In this instance the officers had no kind of right to interfere, and I represented as much to them, yet they persisted, and I ordered such articles as belonged to Rosario to be placed in their hands. Not very well myself for the last week, Rosario's death did not make me more inclined to squabble with the bailiffs about a point which they were determined to carry.
10th October.—About twelve o'clock we conveyed the remains of poor Rosario to the church of San Rosario, in Mariana. After the burial we set off for Villa Rica, where we arrived in the afternoon.
The next morning I wrote an account of
the conduct of the bailiffs to the governor, who, after submitting my letter to the Provisional Government, sent off two dragoons to bring in the delinquents. They were desired by the government to return every article to me and obtain my pardon. This was readily granted, and, on receiving a fresh lecture at the palace, they returned a good deal mortified to their homes.
As the wet season was rapidly setting in, I determined to lose no time in returning to Rio de Janeiro. I packed up my collections in boxes of a proper size for a mule's load, and, in order to obviate the annoyance of opening them at every register or patrol-house, I readily accepted the governor's offer to take a government order to dispense with this ceremony. The permission, which was also very obligingly conceded to me to visit the diamond district, I never availed myself of, as my time was so limited, and as the features of the country about the diamond washings have nothing to recommend them but that cirumstance.
I purchased five more mules at Villa Rica, and engaged another additional tropeiro and driver, and every thing else being in readiness, I left Villa Rica on the 15th October, and
retraced my steps to Rio de Janeiro. The wet season having commenced unusually early, the roads soon became nearly impassable, and there are few who can conceive the constant troubles that attend travellers at that period of the year. The loads of the mules were heavy, and the constant up-hill and down-hill work, and the frequent sloughs we had to struggle through, killed three of the mules on the road. The rain fell every day, and had a destructive influence on the healths of Adam and the new driver, whom I scarcely expected would reach the coast alive. In the beginning of November, however, I approached Rio de Janeiro, and inhaled the sea breeze with no small degree of pleasure.
It only remains for me to add that a few days afterwards the Owen Glendower, Captain The Hon. R. C. Spencer, arrived from the Pacific on her return to England. Captain Spencer most obligingly offered me a passage, and taking leave of many very excellent friends, I went on board on the 22d November, and, after a voyage of little more than two months, the Owen Glendower cast anchor at Spithead.
VOL. II. U
Made on Board H. M. S. SUPERB, during a Voyage
from PLYMOUTH to RIO DE JANEIRO.
|Lat.||Long.||Temperature of the Air.||Temperature of the Sea.||Barometer.||Winds.||Weather.||Remarks.|
|1819.||N.||W.||8 A.M.||Noon.||4 P.M.||8 A.M.||Noon.||Noon.|
|Sept. 10||48° 57′||5° 14′||No Observations were made during the first Week.|
|Sept. 11||47 54||6 45|
|Sept. 12||46 8||9 48|
|Sept. 13||42 36||12 13|
|Sept. 14||40 48||13 14|
|Sept. 15||39 28||13 32|
|Sept. 16||37 40||14 2||72||73||73||71||71½||30.09||N.N.E||Fine||Var. of Compass, 22°.|
|Sept. 17||35 3||14 41||72½||73||72||71½||71½||30.1||N.E.||Fine|
|Sept. 18||Mad||eira||73||73||71½||72||72||30.1||N.E.||Squally||Made porto Santo and Madeira.|
|Sept. 19||32° 11′||17° 8′||75||72½||73||73½||72||29.9||N.W.||Fine||Variation, 20°|
|Sept. 20||29 57||17 57||74||74||74||72||71||29.8||NNW.||Heavy Rain early||Temperature at 120
|Sept. 21||29 13||18 16||77||77||77||72½||74||30||W.||Fine|
|Sept. 22||28 26||18 43||77||78½||77||73½||74||30.1||Calm||Fine||At 120 fathoms, 58°.|
|Sept. 23||26 55||19 27||77||77||76½||73||74||30||N.W.||Fine|
|Sept. 24||24 55||21 1||79||78||77||75||75||30||N.E.||Fine|
|Sept. 25||22 36||22 47||78||77||77||75||75||30||N.E.||Fine|
|Sept. 26||20 6||24 24||79||79||79||76||76||30.1||N.E.||Fine|
|Sept. 27||17 33||25 40||79||78||78||76||76||30||N.E.||Fine||Var. of Compass, 13°.|
|Sept. 28||15 3||25 35||81||80||80||78||79½||29.9||N.E.||Fine||Some showers in the evening.|
|Sept. 29||14 10||25 26||84||84||83||79||81||29.9||Calm||Fine||Temp. at 50 fathoms,
59°, at 100 fathoms,
53°. —Var. 13° W.
|Sept. 30||12 49||24 57||83||86||83||80||81||29.9||N.E.||Fine|
|Oct. 1||11 30||24 27||83||81||83||80||81||29.9||E.N.E.||Fine|
|1819.||N.||W.||8 A.M.||Noon.||4 P.M.||4 A.M.||Noon.||Noon.|
|Oct. 2||10° 5′||24° 9′||84||82||81||81||81||29.9||Calm||Var. of Compass, 12°. In the night, heavy showers.|
|Oct. 3||9 12||23 53||84||83||83||80½||81||29.9||Variab.||Squally||Idem.|
|Oct. 4||8 43||23 44||82||82||82||80½||81||29.9||Variab.||Heavy Showers||Temp. of Sea at 4 P.M. 79½|
|Oct. 5||7 52||22 33||80||82½||81||80||81½||29.9||S.W.||Heavy showers|
|Oct. 6||6 33||21 16||81½||84||80||81||82||29.9||NNW.||At 4 A.M. temp. of water at the surface, 80°. Heavy showers.|
|Oct. 7||4 46||20 48||82||84||80||81||82||29.9||Calm||Heavy Showers|
|Oct. 8||3 10||20 35||80||82||80||81||82||29.8||S.W.||Heavy Showers||Temp. of Sea at 4 A.M. 78°.|
|Oct. 9||2 12||22 0||81||81½||80||80||81||29.9||S.||Fine||Variation of Compass, 13° 30′.—Doubtful.|
|Oct. 10||1 33||22 44||82||82¾||80||80||80||29.9||S.E.||Fine|
|Oct. 11||16′ S.||23° 39′||81||81||80||78||79||29.9||S.E.||Fine|
|Oct. 12||1° 38′||25 0||80½||81||79||77||78||29.9||SE.b.s.||Fine|
|Oct. 13||3 25||26 18||80½||81||80||78||79||29.9||SE.b.S.||Cloudy||Variation, 8° 45′.|
|Oct. 14||5 25||28 40||80½||80||80||78||79||29.9||SE.b.S.||Fine||Fresh Breeze.|
|Oct. 15||7 47||29 24||80½||80½||80||78½||79½||29.9||S.S.E.||Fine||Fresh Breeze.|
|Oct. 16||10 18||31 14||81½||82½||80||78||77||29.9||S.S.E||Fine||Idem.|
|Oct. 17||13 1||32 22||80||80||79||77||78||29.9||S.S.E||Fine|
|Oct. 18||15 53||33 33||78||78||78||77||76||30||S.E.||Fine|
|Oct. 19||18 25||35 17||78||79||79||76||75½||30||Var.S.E.||Fine—Showers|
|Oct. 20||20 28||36 58||76½||80||79||75||76||30||N.||Fine|
|Oct. 21||22 17||39 3||77||74½||75||75½||75½||29.9||Calm||Storm of Rain and Wind in the Morning.|
|Oct. 22||22 20||39 45||74½||76||74||73||75||29.9||Calm|
|Oct. 23||22 50||40 40||75||79½||76||71½||73½||29.9||Calm||In Soundings.|
|Oct. 24||Insight of Rio de Janeiro||75½||78½||75||70½||72½||29.9||Sea Breeze|
On examining the water of Botafogo Bay, the specific gravity, at 80° of Fahrenheit,
|The correction for the temperature of 60°||.0022|
I used a delicate glass bulb, holding fifty grains of distilled water.
An ACCOUNT of the Number of SLAVES imported into Rio de Janeiro in the Year 1823.
|In fifty-two vessels||20, 610 landed.|
|Died at sea||1, 437|
|22, 047 shipped.|
In 1824, to the 6th March.
|In seventeen vessels||5, 626 landed.|
|Died at sea||840|
|6, 466 shipped.|
An ABSTRACT of the PROJECT of CONSTITUTION, published in Rio de Janeiro in August, 1823.
It proposes that the constitution shall be a limited and hereditary monarchy, formed of a General Assembly, divided into a Chamber of Deputies and a Senate. That the elections shall be indirect; the electors being first chosen from the mass of the people, and the deputies from them. All Brazilians and freed men born in Brazil, and naturalized foreigners, are qualified to vote for the electors if they possess a clear annual rental of 150* alquieres of mandioca flour. Minors, servants, freed blacks not born in Brazil, cloistered monks, clerks and day labourers, are not qualified to vote in the primary or parochial assemblies. The electors who are in the actual enjoyment of a rental of 250 alquieres of
* Worth about £5 sterling.
mandioca flour, may vote for deputies, the qualification of whom is 500 alquieres. No naturalized foreigner, servants of the imperial household, nor Brazilian subjects born in Portugal, unless they shall have resided twelve years in the country, can belong to the Chamber of Deputies.
The senators are constituted for life, and formed, in the first instance, from a triple list sent by the lower chamber to the Emperor. The qualification for a senator is double in amount that of a deputy, and he must, in addition, have attained the age of forty. The number of senators is to be half that of the other chamber, which is to be fixed hereafter, in proportion to the population. Both chambers are to have a small annual salary, and their travelling expences allowed.
The peculiar attributes of the Emperor, who is to be assisted by a privy council and those of the Senate and Chamber of Deputies, are perfectly similar to those of the same orders in our own constitution, which the Assembly appears, in framing the project, to have wisely kept in view.
The Roman Catholic religion is to be the
religion of the state; but all other Christian sects are to be tolerated. Trail by jury in criminal cases is to take place, but not in civil suits, which are to be adjudicated as heretofore in the different tribunals, which are regulated by the Roman law.
PROJECT of the CONSTITUTION for the EMPIRE of BRAZIL.
OF THE EMPIRE OF BRAZIL, ITS TERRITORY, GOVERNMENT, DYNASTY, AND RELIGION.
Art. 1st.—The Empire of Brazil is the political asssociation of all Brazilian citizens; they form a free and independent nation, which admits of no other bond of union or federation, which may be opposed to its independence.
Art. 2d.—Its territory is divided into provinces, in the form at present existing, which may be subdivided, as the good of the state requires.
Art. 3d.—Its government is a monarchy, hereditary, constitutional, and representative.
Art. 4th.—The reigning dynasty is that of Senhor Don Pedro, the existing Emperor and perpetual defender of Brazil.
Art. 5th.—The Catholic Apostolic Roman religion shall continue to be the religion of the
Empire; all other religions will be permitted, with their domestic or particular worship, without any external form of temple.
OF BRAZILIAN CITIZENS.
Art. 6th.—Those shall be Brazilian citizens, 1st, who are born in Brazil, whether free born or freed men; this will be the case, though the father be a foreigner, provided he does not reside in Brazil in the service of his nation: 2d, the sons of a Brazilian father, or the illegitimate children of a Brazilian mother, born in a foreign country, who may come to establish their domicile in the empire: 3d, the children of a Brazilian father, who may be in a foreign country, in the service of the empire, even though they should not come to establish themselves in Brazil: 4th, all those born in Portugal or in its possessions, who being resident in Brazil at the time of proclaiming the independence of the provinces in which they reside, shall adhere to that independence, expressly or tacitly, by continuing their residence: 5th, naturalized foreigners, whatever their religion may be. The law shall deter-
mine the qualities necessary to obtain naturalization.
Art. 7th.—He shall lose his rights of Brazilian citizen—1st, who naturalizes himself in a foreign country: 2d, who, without leave from the emperor, shall accept employment, pension, or decoration, from any foreign government: 3d, he who is banished by judicial sentence.
Art. 8th.—The exercise of political rights is suspended: 1st, by incapacity, physical or moral: 2d, by judicial degradation.
OF POWERS AND THE NATIONAL REPRESENTATION.
Art. 9th.—The division and harmony of political powers are the conservative principles of the rights of the citizens, and the most secure means of establishing the effective guarantees which the constitution offers.
Art. 10th.—The political powers recognized by the constitution of Brazil are four—the legislative power, the moderating power, the executive power, and the judicial power.
Art. 11th.—The representatives of the Brazilian nation are, the emperor and the general assembly.
Art. 12th.—All powers in the empire of Brazil are delegations from the nation.
OF THE LEGISLATIVE POWER.
Of the Branches of the Legislative Power.
Art. 13th.—The legislative power is delegated to the general assembly, with the sanction of the emperor.
Art. 14th.—The general assembly is composed of two chambers—the chamber of deputies, and the chamber of senators, or senate.
Art. 15th.—It belongs to the general assembly: 1st, to take the oath of the emperor, the imperial prince, the regent or regency: 2nd, to elect the regent or regency, and to mark the limits of its authority: 3d, to recognize the imperial prince as successor to the throne, in the first meeting after his birth: 4th, to nominate a tutor to the emperor when a minor, in case his father shall not have nominated one in his testament; to resolve the doubts that may arise relative to the succession
to the throne: 6th, on the death of the emperor, or a vacancy of the throne, to institute an inquiry into the administration which has concluded, and to reform abuses introduced into it: 7th, to select a new dynasty in case of the extinction of the present one: 8th, to make laws, to interpret them, and to suspend them: 9th, to watch over the constitution, and to promote the general good: 10th, to fix annually the public charges, and to assess the direct contribution: 11th, to fix annually, on the report of the government, the ordinary and extraordinary forces by sea and land: 12th, to grant or to refuse an entrance to foreign troops by sea or land within the empire or its ports: 13th, to authorize the government to contract loans: 14th, to establish convenient means for the payment of the public debt: 15th, to regulate the administration of the national domains, and to decree their alienation: 16th, to create or suppress public employments, and to establish those that are ordered: 17th, to determine the weight, value, inscription, type, and denomination of money, as well as to regulate weights and measures.
Art. 16th.—Each legislature shall last four years, and every session four months.
Art. 17th.—Each of the chambers shall have the title of "The August and Most Worthy Representatives of the Nation."
Art. 18th.—The Imperial Session of Opening will every year be the 3d of May.
Art. 19th.—The session of prorogation shall likewise be Imperial; and both shall take place in general assembly, the two chambers being united.
Art. 20th.—The ceremonial, and the manner in which the emperor shall take part in the business, shall be settled by an interio regulation.
Art. 21st.—The nomination of the respective presidents, vice-presidents, and secretaries of the chambers, the verification of the powers of its members, the form of the oath, and the internal police, shall be executed according to regulations to be enacted.
Art. 22d.—In the meetings of the two chambers, the president of the senate shall preside, the deputies and senators shall occupy places promiscuously.
Art. 23d.—To constitute a chamber at the commencement of a session, it will be necessary that the half of the members, and one more, should have assembled.
VOL. II. X
Art. 24th.—The sittings of both chambers shall be public, with the exception of cases where the public good will require secret sittings.
Art. 25tn.—Business shall be decided by a plurality of votes of the members present.
Art. 26th.—The members of each of the chambers are inviolable on account of the opinions which they shall utter in the exercise of their functions.
Art. 27th.—No senator or deputy, during his deputation, can be arrested by any authority, except by order of his respective chamber, unless in flagrante delicto of a capital crime.
Art. 28th.—If any senator or deputy be denounced, the judge, suspending every ulterior proceeding, shall give an account to his respective chamber, which shall decide whether the proceeding is to go on, and whether the member shall be suspended in the exercise of his functions.
Art. 29th.—Senators or deputies may be elected ministers, or counsellors of stae; with this difference, that the senator may continue in his chamber, while the deputy must be sent to a new election.
Art. 30th.—They may enjoy the two offices,
if they exercise one of them at the moment of election.
Art. 31st.—No person can be at the same time a member of the two chambers.
Art. 32d.—The exercise of any other functions, except that of counsellor or minister of state, ceases as long as the functions of the deputy or senator continue.
Art. 33d.—In the interval of the sessions, the emperor shall not have it in his power to employ a senator or deputy beyond the empire; nor shall they exercise these employments when they would render it impossible to attend on the convocation of the chambers.
Art. 34th.—If the good of the state should render, in any unforeseen case, a breach of this rule necessary, the respective chamber shall determine on the necessity.
Of the Chamber of Deputies.
Art. 35th.—The Chamber of Deputies is elective and temporary.
Art. 36th.—The Chamber of Deputies has the initative: lst, on taxes; 2d, on recruiting; 3d, on the choice of a dynasty, in case of the extinction of the reigning family.
Art. 37th.—The Chamber of Deputies shall likewise have the initative in the following cases: 1st, an inquiry into the past administration, and the reform of abuses introduced into it; 2nd, the discussion of propositions made by the executive power.
Art. 38th.—They shall likewise decree the impeachment of ministers.
Art. 39th.—The deputies shall enjoy, during the session, a pecuniary subsidy, besides receiving the expenses of their journey to and from the chamber.
Of the Senate.
Art. 40th.—The senate is composed of members elected for life, and will be organized by a provincial election.
Art. 41st.—Every province shall elect a number of senators equal to half its deputies, if the number of deputies be an even one; if not, a number less than the half by one: thus a province which sends eleven deputies shall only elect five senators.
Art. 42d.—But if a province has only one deputy, it shall nevertheless have a senator.
Art. 43d.—The elections shall take place in the same way as for the deputies, but in triple list; and the emperor shall choose the third part of the whole list.
Art. 44th.—Vacancies shall be filled up in the same way as a first election.
Art. 45th.—To be a senator, it is required: 1st, that he be a Brazilian citizen, and enjoy political rights; 2d, that he be forty, or upwards: 3d, that he be a person of knowledge, capacity, and virtue, giving a preference to those who have performed services to their country; 4th, that he enjoys an income from land, industry, or commerce, of 800 milreas.
Art. 46th.—The princes of the Imperial House are, of right, members of the senate, and take their seats as soon as they are twenty five years of age.
Art. 47th.—It is the exclusive privilege of the senate, 1st, to take cognizance of the individual offences committed by the royal family, the ministers, and the counsellors of state, and the senators; and the offences of the deputies during the period of the legislative session; 2d, to enforce the responsilibility of the secretaries and counsellors of state; 3d, to expedite letters for the convocation of the assembly, in case the emperor has not
done so two months after the time prescribed by the constitution; 4th, to convoke the assembly on the death of the emperor, for the election of a regency, when necessary.
Art. 48th.— In proceeding against crimes, the impeachment of which does not belong to the Chamber of Deputies, the procurer of the crown shall be the accuser.
Art. 49th.—The sessions of the senate shall commence and finish at the same time as those of the Chamber of Deputies.
Art. 50th.—With the exception of the cases ordered by the constitution, every meeting of the senate beyond the time of the sittings of the Chamber of Deputies, is illicit and of no effect.
Art. 51st.—The salary of the senators shall be one half more than that of the deputies.
Of the Proposition, Discussion, Sanction, and Promulgation of Laws.
Art. 52d.—The proposing and opposing, and the approving of projects of laws, is within the power of each of the chambers.
Art. 53d.—The executive power exercises, through any of the ministers of state, the proposition of laws; but these propositions can
only be converted into projects of law after an examination by a commission of the chambers.
Art. 54th.—Ministers may assist and discuss propositions, but are not allowed to vote, unless they are members of the chambers.
(The remaining articles of this chapter relate to the form of granting or withholding the imperial sanction to the laws which have passed the general assembly.)
Of the Councils-General of the Provinces, and their Jurisdiction.
Art. 71st.—The constitution recognizes and guarantees the right of every citizen to take a management in the affairs of his province, which may have a relation to his individual interests.
Art. 72d.—This right will be exercised by chambers of districts, and councils called "Councils-General of the Provinces."
Art. 73d.—Each of these councils shall consist of twenty-one members, in the most populous provinces.
Art. 74th.—The election of the members will be made at the same time, and in the same manner, as that of the representatives of the nation, and for the same period.
Of the Elections.
Art. 90th:—The nomination of the deputies and senators for the general assembly, and of the councils-general of the provinces, shall take place by indirect elections, the mass of active citizens electing in parochaial assemblies the electors of provinces; and the latter choosing the representatives of the nation and the province.
Art. 91st and 92d.—All Brazilian citizens have a vote in the parochaial assemblies, with the exception of minors, military officers, priests, monks, servants, and a description of persons that may be called paupers.
Art. 93d.—Those who cannot vote in the parochial assemblies cannot be members of, or vote for any authority.
Art. 94th.—Fixes the qualification of a provincial elector at 200 milreas, arising from land, industry, or commerce.
Art. 95th.— Freedemen cannot vote at provincial elections.
Art. 96th.—To be eligible to the Chamber of the Deputies, a qualification of 400 milreas of net annual income is required; naturalized
foreigners, and persons not professing the religion of the state, are excluded.
OF THE EXECUTIVE POWER.
Art. 100th.—The title of the emperor shall be that of "constitutional Emperor, and perpetual Defender of Brazil."
He shall be addressed by "Imperial Majesty."
Art. 101st.—The emperor exercises the moderating power: 1st, by nominating the senators as prescribed in article 43d: 2d, by convoking the extraordinary general assembly in the interval between the sessions: 3d, by sanctioning the decress of this assembly, to give them the force of law: 4th, by proroguing the general assembly, and dissolving the chamber of deputies, in cases in which the safety of the state shall require it: 5th, by nominating his ministers: 6th, by suspending magistrates: 7th and 8th, by pardoning and granting amnesties.
Of the Executive Power.
Art. 102d.—The emperor is the chief executive power, which he exercises through his
ministers of state. The following are its principal attributes: 1st, he convokes the general assembly: 2d, he nominates bishops, magistrates, commanders by sea and land, and ambassadors: he forms alliances, and enters into political foreign negotiations; he declares war, and makes peace; he gives letters of naturalization, &c. &c.
Art. 103d.—The emperor, before being proclaimed, shall take, before the president of the senate, the following oath, "I swear to maintain the Roman Catholic Religion, the integrity and indivisibility of the empire; to observe, and to cause to be observed, the political constitution of the Brazilian nation, and the laws of the empire; and to provide for the welfare of Brazil as far as in me lies."
Art. 104th.—The emperor cannot go out of Brazil without the consent of the general assembly; and, if he does so, he is considered as abdicating the crown.
Of the Imperial Succession.
Art. 116th.—The senator Don Pedro I., by the unanimous acclamation of the people,
now Constitutional Emperor and Perpetual Defender, shall always reign in Brazil.
Art. 117th.—His legitimate posterity shall succeed to the throne, according to the regular order of primogeniture and representation, the anterior line being always preferred to the posterior; in the same line, the nearest degree to the more remote; in the same degree, the masculine sex to the feminine; and in the same sex, the person more aged to the younger.
Art. 118th.—In the case of the lines of the legitimate descendants of Don Pedro I. becoming extinct, the general assembly shall, during the life of the last descendant, elect a new dynasty.
Art. 119th.—No foreigner can succeed to the imperial crown of Brazil.
Art. 120th.—The marriage of the princess, presumptive heir of the crown, shall take place with the emperor's approbation: in case there should be no emperor at the time when such marriage is proposed, it cannot be concluded without the approbation of the general assembly: her husband can take no part in the government, and not to be called emperor until he have a son or daughter by the empress.
Relates to the Form of Regency in the case of the Minority or Physical Incapacity of the Emperor.
Art. 121st.—The emperor ceases to be a minor at the age of eighteen.
Of the Ministry.
Art. 131st.—There shall be different secretaryships of state, to which shall be referred the affairs belonging to each.
Art. 132d.—Orders shall proceed from the ministers of state, otherwise they cannot be executed.
Art. 133d.—The ministers of state shall be responsible, 1st, for treason; 2d, for corruption, subornation, or extortion; 3d, the abuse of power; 4th, for failure in the observance of the law; 5th, for acts contrary to the liberty, security, or property of citizens; 6th, for any waste of public property.
Art. 134th.—A particular law shall specify the nature of these offences, and the manner of proceeding against them.
Art. 135th.—The ministers cannot escape
from their responsibility, in consequence of any orders given by the emperor, whether verbal or written.
Art. 136th.— Foreigners, although they may be naturalized, cannot become ministers of state.
The Council of State.
Art. 137th.—There shall be a council of state, composed of counsellors for life, appointed by the emperor.
Art. 138th.—Their number shall not exceed ten.
Art. 139th.—In this number the ministers of state are not to be included; neither shall the ministers act as counsellors of state, without being expressly appointed for that purpose by the emperor.
Art. 140th.—The same qualifications are requisite for a counsellor of state as for a senator.
Art. 141st.—Before taking the oath, the counsellors of state may swear, in presence of the emperor, to maintain the Catholic Religion, to respect the constitution and the laws, to be faithful to the emperor, and to give him conscientious advice, having in view only the welfare of the nation.
Art. 142d.—The opinion of the counsellors shall be heard on all important business, and on the general measures of administration; but principally on questions of war or peace, negotiations with foreign powers, and on any occasion on which the emperor may propose to exercise any of the functions of the moderating power pointed out in article 101st, with the exception of the 6th.
Art. 143d.— The counsellors of state shall be held responsible for any advice they may give with the design of violating the laws or the interests of the state.
Art. 144th.—The imperial prince, on coming of age, shall be president of the council of state; the other princes of the imperial family cannot become members of the council, except by the appointment of the emperor: the princes are not to be included in the number specified in article l38th.
Art. 145th.—Every Brazilian is required to bear arms in defence of the independence and integrity of the empire, and to protect it against its enemies foreign and domestic.
Art. 146th.—The general assembly not hav-
ing determined on the permanent amount of the naval and military force, it shall remain at its present amount until the above-mentioned assembly shall either increase or diminish it.
Art. 147th.—The military force is essentially obedient: it can never be assembled, except by command of the legitimate authority.
Art. 148th.—It belongs to the executive power to employ the naval and military force, as may be expedient, for the security of the empire.
Art. 149th.—Officers of the army and navy cannot be deprived of their commissions, except by the sentence of a competent tribunal.
Art. 150th.—A special ordinance will regulate the organization of the Brazilian army and navy, their promotions, pay, and discipline.
OF THE JUDICIAL POWER.
Of Judges and Courts of Justice.
Art. 151st.—The judicial power is independent, and shall be composed of judges and
jurors, both in civil and criminal cases, in such manner as the law shall hereafter determine.
Art. 152d.—The jurors shall pronounce on the fact, and the judges shall apply the law.
Art. 153d.—The judges shall be perpetual, by which it is not to be understood that some may not be transferred to other offices and places, at the time and in the manner which the law shall determine.
Art. 154th.—On complaints being preferred, the emperor can suspend the judges, after giving them audience, and consulting the council of state.
Art. 155th.—Judges cannot be displaced, except by a sentence.
Art. 156th.—All judges of law and officers of justice are responsible for the abuses of power and transgressions committed in the discharge of their duties.
Art. 157th.—Judges may be prosecuted for subornation, corruption, or extortion; and the action may be instituted within a year and a day, either by the person aggrieved or by any other, the forms of process established by law being observed.
Art. 158th.— In order to the trying of causes
in the second and dernier resort, there shall be established in the provinces the tribunals necessary for public convenience.
Art. 159th.—In criminal cases the examination of the witnesses, and all the proceedings of the trial, shall be published immediately on the decision.
Art. 160th.—In civil causes or actions for civil penalties, the parties may nominate arbitrators.
Art. 161st.—Without proof of reconciliation having been attempted, no prosecution can be commenced.
Art. 162d.— For this purpose there shall be justices of the peace, who shall be elected at the same time and manner as the members of the chambers: their power and districts shall be regulated by law.
Art. 163d.—Besides the court which must exist in the capital of the empire, as well as in the provinces, there will also be a court entitled the supreme Tribunal of Justice, at which will preside judges selected from the other courts, according to their seniority.
Art. 164th. —The duties of this tribunal will be, 1st, to permit or to refuse the revision of causes in the way determined by the law:
VOL. II. Y
2d, to inquire into the abuses committed by its own officers, or those of other courts, persons connected with the diplomatic body, and the presidents of the provinces: 3d, to investigate and to decide on disputes respecting the jurisdiction and competency of the provincial courts.
OF THE ADMINISTRATION AND ECONOMY OF THE PROVINCES.
Art. 165th.—In each province there shall be a president, appointed by the emperor, who will have the power of removing him, when such a measure may be deemed expedient for the welfare of the state.
Art. 166th.—The law will determine the attributes and authority of these presidents.
Of the Councils.
Art. 167th.—In all the cities and towns now existing, and in those which may here-
after be created, there shall be councils for managing the economical and municipal government of the said cities and towns.
Art. 168th.—The councils shall be elected and composed of the number of landholders which the law may determine; and he who may obtain the greatest number of votes shall be president.
Art. 169th.—The functions of these councils, the formation of their police, the application of their revenues, and all their useful attributes, shall be decreed by a regulating chapter.
(Relates to the National Treasury.)
OF THE RIGHTS OF CITEZENS.
Art. 179th. —The inviolability of the civil and political rights of citizens is guaranteed by the constitution of the empire, as follows:
1. No citizen can be forced to act, or neglect to perform any act, but according to law.
2. No law shall be made without the public utility demands it.
3. No law shall act retrospectively.
4. Every citizen may communicate his thoughts by words, writings, and by means of a free press; but all abuses committed in the exercise of these rights must be answered for according to law.
5. No citizen can be arraigned for his religious opinions, provided he respects that of the state, and pays proper deference to public morals.
6. It is permitted to every one to remain or quit the country, taking his property with him.
7. The inviolability of the dwelling-house.
8. No arrest can take place without the charge being expressly mentiond.
14. Every citizen is qualified for civil, political and military employments.
15. Contributions to the state must be paid by every one according to his means.
18. A civil and military code, founded on the solid bases of justice and equity, will be promulgated as soon as possible.
19. All floggings, torture, brandings, and other punishments of that description, are abolished from this date.
20. The national debt stands guaranteed
27. The inviolability of letters is strictly declared.
32. The constitution guarantees early and gratuitous instruction to all classes.
33. And colleges and universities.
35. In cases of rebellion or invasion of enemy, some of the forms which guarantee the liberty of the subject may be dispensed with by particular act of the legislative power.
Rio de Janeiro,
11th December, 1823.
(Here follow ten signatures.)
on the 25th March, 1824, the Emperor took the sacrament, and, after a Te Deum, solemnly swore to keep and faithfully abide by the project of the constitution—an act in which he was followed by the empress and the ministers.
In the first volume of the Naval Chronicle the following account is given of the effects of a pampero in the Rio de la Plata. "In 1793 the waters of this river were forced, in the month of April, by a most violent current of wind, to the distance of ten leagues, so that the neighbouring plains were entirely inundated, and the bed of the river left dry. Ships which had been sunk in the river for upwards of thirty years were uncovered, and among others, an English vessel, which was cast away in the year 1762. Several persons repaired to the bed of the river, which they could walk about without wetting their feet, and returned laden with silver and other riches which had been long buried under the water. This phenomenon, which may be ranked among the grand revolutions of nature, continued three days, at the end of which the wind ceased, and the water returned with great violence to its natural bed."
METEROLOGICAL OBSERVATIONS made at BUENOS AYRES, in the year 1822, comprising the Autumn and Winter of the Climate.
In consequence of the improvements of the Baron de Born, in metallurgy, the court of Spain sent, in 1786, M. d' Elhuyer, intendent of the Mexican mines, to Vienna, to engage such expert miners as would in a short time restore the mines of South America to their former flourishing state. Helms, chief assayer at Crakow, and the Baron de Nordenflycht, a Swede, also employed there, entered into terms with the Spanish government.—Accompanied by their families, German miners, and servants, they sailed from Cadiz for Buenos Ayres, which they left on the 29th October, 1788, for Potosi and Lima. Helms had great difficulties to contend with, chiefly owing to the intrigues of those who were engaged in the mines. They derived far greater profits before his arrival than they could afterwards obtain, and they threw, therefore, every obstacle in the way of his improvements. Disgusted with the treatment he met with, his health materially affected by disappointment and the climate, he determined to return to Europe, which he did early in 1793, and some time after gave to the world an Account of his Travels.
An ACCOUNT of VESSELS which have arrived in the Port of BUENOS AYRES.
|January.||9||Belonging to the province||424|
|February.||9||Belonging to the Province||446|
|March.||11||Belonging to the Province||571|
An ACCOUNT of VESSELS which have cleared outwards
|January.||7||Belonging to the Province||424|
|February.||3||Belonging to the Province||114|
|March.||10||Belonging to the Province||676|
Darò fine a questo piccolo saggio entomologico con due brevi osservazioni, 1ma, che in quanti paesi ho veduto del Vicereinato della Plata, niuno non visitai dove le pulci più si propagassero quanto nella sua capitale di Buenos-Aires; 2da. niuno dove i tafani più molesti fossero, ed incomodi agli uomini, ed alle bestie quanto il circondario di Monte-Video. Rapporto alle prime, se è cosa avverata, che in Buenos-Aires le cimici lettuarie* siano scarse, od affatto manchino, tanto è certo, che le pulci siano moltissime, e molestissime ad ogni vivente. Vi è percio l' usanza fra i cittadini, anche fra i più cospicui, di mutarsi più volte la biancheria, o panni lini, al giorno, onde, in parte liberarsi dalla molestia di detti insetti, è chi non può tanto, di slentarsi i detti panni, e le mutande, e le calze, onde allontanarle per
* According to Azara, le cimici lettuarie are of modern introduction, being brough into Paraguay in the middle of the last century among the baggage of the Spanish governor.
qualche intervallo dalle immediazioni della vive came. Pure ciò non basta, perehe a pochi momenti non riguadagnino i primi posti, e ne seguano sitibonde a saziarsi di sangue. Io, siccome gli altri poveri figlj d'Adamo, n' era molestato, ed usavo ogni diligenza onde liberarmene. Una sera, che moltissimo mi trovavo occupato di un affare serio, ed urgente, anche elleno sembra, che contro di me se ne congiurassero, onde farmi ad ogni loro possa dissiparmi, ed alienarmi dalla dovutane attenzione. Stanco pur mi vidi, ed inquietato dalle moltiplici lor punture, sinchè la pazienza abbandonandomi, chiusi i libri, e cercando un buon cattino con della acqua fresca, al di sopra dell' acqua sciolsi le ligacce alle calze, in guisache niuna delle pulci, che vivo mi mangiavano, non saltasse che dentro l' acqua sottopostavi. Io confesso, che restai raccapricciato, nell' osservare tutta la superficie oscurata, e viemeglio nell' accertarmi che ciò fosse effetto della quantità delle pulci, che mi tiraneggiavano. Cosi le lasciai sin al seguente giorno, nel quale cercai un momento, in cui potesse saperne il numero. Mi munì di flemma, e ne vennia capo d'una ad una contarle. Ne passarono di ottocento, e ciò nel sito solo delle ligacce; quante
poi ne saranno state in altre parti del corpo! quante anche ne saranno scappate dal cattino! Quindì si potrà conchiudere a qual tormento sono soggetti i cittadini di quella città; e il peggio è senza remedio, o al più precario, e per pochi istanti.
De Termeyer, Opuscoli, tom. v. p. 570.
REGISTER of the Parish of St. Nicolas, BUENOS AYRES, Dr. Ruiz, Rector.
|BIRTHS in the month of August, 1820.|
|30 Males.||37 Females.|
|In the month of Janauary, 1821|
|17 Males.||11 Females.|
|DEATHS in the month of August, 1820|
|10 Males.||8 Females.|
|In the month of January, 1821|
|14 Males.||9 Females.|
Many of the deaths at the age of 70 and 80, and several instances of 110 and 114. The ages however are not put down in the Catholic registers.
SUMMARY of the POPULATION of the Provinces of the RIO DE LA PLATA.
|Punta de St. Luis||20,000|
|St. Jago del Estero||30,000|
Buenos Ayres, May 3, 1824
MESSAGE of the BUENOS AYRES Executive to the Legislative Assembly, or House of Representatives.
THE fourth meeting of the Legislature of the State, assembled together in the manner prescribed by the laws, will afford to those who have any regard for institutions established for the preservation of their liberties, additional confidence; and the Government, in rendering you an account of the present state of public affairs, commences by congratulating itself on that feeling which, yearly increasing, will more and more conduce to the security of the representative system.
Peace has been maintained with the nations of the continent, and every true American heart has been filled with satisfaction at the reception in our city of the first Minister Plenipotentiary of the republic of the United States, an honour which has been returned by
our appointment of a minister of corresponding rank, who has already departed for Washington. He has been instructed to suggest to the government of that republic how desirable it would be, if, in addition to those two great principles, viz. that of the abolition of piratical warfare, and that of the non-European colonization of American territory, it could also be declared that none of the new governments of this continent shall alter by force their respective boundaries, as recognized at the time of this emancipation. Thus may be destroyed the germ of future dissensions which, springing up amongst new states, might have a fatal influence upon their civilization and manners.
The same minister will establish our relations with the republic of Mexico, which, after many fearful vicissitudes, now gives us hopes corresponding with her exalted destinies.
The republic of Colombia at last sees its vast territory entirely free from enemies, and the happy state of our mutual relations induces us to expect shortly the ratification of the treaty of the 8th of March.
The minister sent to the republic of Chile and Peru has strengthened the bonds of our
VOL. II. Z
natural amity and alliance with them. The illustrious President of Colombia will shortly open the campaign against the only forces of the enemy which remain on the continent. The number and quality of his troops, the spirit which animates them, and the ability of the chief who commands them, promise the happiest results.
The base revolt of the garrison of Callao, which has at this moment thrown a temporary gloom over our expectations will soon be lost among those successes which must ere long put an end to the oppression of Peru. Time has more closely cemented our alliances with the provinces of Santa Fé, Entre Rios, and Corrientes. The remaining provinces of the Old Union continue in a state of tranquillity, and the government has not only cultivated friendly relations with them all, but its efforts for the establishment of a national representation promise to be crowned with success. Many of the provinces have already elected their representatives, whilst others are preparing to do so; and it is probable that we shall shortly see the installation of a general congress, and the re-union of one common family too long dispersed and divided.
In the intimate persuasion that nothing will so much contribute to create a national spirit above all individual prejudices, as the dissemination throughout every part of the Union of real advantages which till now have been unknown, this government has hastened its preparations for a general congress.
The public credit and connections acquired by this government have enabled it to promote the formation of powerful companies of capitalists ready to undertake to explore our mines—to facilitate the inland trade and navigation of the great rivers which traverse the provinces of the Union—to introduce in others the means of transport by steam-vessels—and, finally, to establish a national bank, which may assist these òperations, and provide for the provinces that capital which is necessary for the promotion and encouragement of their respective industry.
It is much to be lamented, Gentlemen, that the court of Brazil should have refused to listen to the first remonstrances made for the restitution of the province of Monte Video. Enough has been done to prove our moderation; for the rest, it remains with the general government to act. It is a national cause, and it is for the nation to defend it.
The government had flattered itself that the dictates of reason would have led to the ratification of the convention of the 4th of July, signed by the Commissioners of his Catholic Majesty, and the establishment of a permanent peace; but the policy which predominates in Madrid since the fall of the Spanish Constitution, and the hostile measures since renewed, incline us to believe that it may, perhaps, still be necessary to complete with the sword the work of our independence. Having given his Catholic Majesty an unlooked-for example of generosity, we shall show him that our original energy is increased with our means of defence.
For this purpose those resources are in preparation which the good state of our domestic affairs enables us to raise. To the new administration is reserved the merit of making the wisest and most efficacious use of them. Some measures will in consequence be immediately submitted for your consideration, and it will be satisfactory for you to know the means which you are possessed of for sustaining a regular warfare with more energy and fewer sacrifices than heretofore. In the mean time we have sent, and continue to send, succours to Salta, without reference to those sums of
money which will be proposed for your approbation.
Under these circumstances it must be very satisfactory to you to observe the policy adopted in a manner so dignified, as well as frank and decided, by the King of Great Britain.
The analogy of feelings and principles manifested by the cabinets of London and Washington will convince Spain that she must contend singly with the free nations of the New World. This conviction will perhaps introduce into her councils that wisdom and moderation which are of so much importance to her existence.
We have received honourably a Consul-General from his Britannic Majesty, who will reside in our city; and it has been deemed expedient in return to appoint a Consul-General to reside in London.
In the mean time the public peace has not been disturbed, and the last popular elections, joined to the quiet circumspection with which, before a free and respectful people, you have elected a new governor for the province, at the time and in the mode prescribed by the laws, all prove that good citizens will not lose their spirit in making a peaceable use of their
freedom. The establishments decreed for juvenile education in the city and in the country have been completed. These, together with the schools for poor female children, founded in the city, make a progress which cannot but serve as a stimulus to the other establishments of a similar description; they have multiplied considerably, and give us reason to look forward to the prospects of a rising generation much surpassing that which has preceded it.
The youth of this and the other provinces of the Union, who are educated in our universities, acquire fresh means of advancing in the moral and natural sciences, and are neither likely to render fruitless the exertions of the government, or the zeal of their masters. The study of political economy has been commenced this year, a knowledge of which will tend to ensure us hereafter intelligent officers.
Professorships have been established, which were necessary for the classical education of those young men who dedicate themselves to the chruch.
The schools of surgery have been provided with an abundant and excellent collection of instruments.
A laboratory of chemistry, and a most complete physical apparatus, have been brought from Europe, to serve for the instruction of the natural sciences.
To the collection of minerals which already exists will shortly be added the machinery adapted to the study of mineralogy. The school of practical agriculture has commenced the introduction into our country of trees, of which it was much in want, and will disseminate practical information which will render this branch plain to the simplest understanding. The library continues on the best footing, and has received, in the present year, valuable additions. The charitable society has completely fulfilled the public expectations. To the zeal and intelligence of the ladies who compose it, are due both the progress in the education of the girls, and the excellent appearance which the female orphan school presents. The hospitals are enlarging, and their interior arrangements are improving, with a considerable reduction of expense. The Vaccine Establishment has proved in this year of sickness its power to contend with and to overcome all the violence of the disease. Public worship is conducted with its usual splendour;
the embellishment of the cathedral of the province goes on with celerity; some churches have been repaired, others are building in the country, and the treasurer has assisted them with sums of money, which will be laid before you for your approbation. The clergy continue to do honour to the station they hold in society: in fine, the country may rest assured that, under every circumstance, it will preserve without reproach that glory which it has acquired in the cause of liberty. Reform in the administration of justice is an object of primary importance to the country; but it is at the same time one most difficult and dangerous to carry into effect. That reform must be founded on the existing codes: but it would be imprudent to apply these, until their first principles are sufficiently understood by those whose duty it may hereafter become to explain and administer the laws.
The magistracy has succeeded in gradually diminishing the existing difficulties, by an augmentation of its moral force, and an active anxiety to prevent crimes, and to discourage litigation; and it is but just to confess that it has fulfilled its duty with a laudable zeal; that it has overcome great difficulties, arising out
of the laws themselves; and that its labours have been productive of a more efficacious mode of correction of crimes, and a more correct knowledge of rights.
The system of the police has been improved with greater economy. The execution of the law of the 20th December last has placed in the hands of the citizens that duty purely civil, with which the army was formerly improperly intrusted.
The moveable property in the country, which becomes more liable to be attacked in proportion to its increase, is better secured against robbery, and the means adopted to regulate the service in the plains have produced the best effects. The streets of the town and the roads have received extraordinary improvements, and a useful spirit of enterprise in constructing bridges and other public works begins to show itself in the city. The departments of architecture and hydraulics have satisfactorily fulfilled the duties of their institution; in a short time they will be provided with those instruments which are requisite for facilitating and extending their operations, especially that of the harbour. The standing army preserves its moral discipline; it has
driven back the savages who invaded our province, recovering from them an immense booty, and it is now occupied in constructing works on the new frontiers. By the decree of the 23d of April of last year, which has been since carried into execution, the education of those young men is sufficiently provided for, who may be expected to distinguish themselves in the rank of officers. But it is necessary to declare to you that the laws appointed for recruiting and filling up the army are insufficient. The government has made every species of sacrifice to effect this object out of the province, and has only been successful in the Entre Rios. You will perhaps now be convinced that there are no other means than those laid before you in the year 1822. The military treasure is in an excellent state; the result of the examinations of the chests of the different corps just finished, has done honour to their commanders. The ordnance, which is now sufficiently provided for ordinary occasions, will be augmented to meet extraordinary emergencies. The administration of the public finances proceeds in good order. It will continue so, provided we consider as sacred this principle, viz. "that the just payment of our
debts is itself a fund of riches." Our whole debt is now consolidated. The system of public credit is becoming more intelligible even to the most prejudiced and to the least instructed; and this will best ensure its preservation. The bank has completed the capital assigned to it on its foundation. Its prosperity exceeds the most sanguine hopes, and its utility is felt by all classes.
It remains to carry into effect a coinage suited to our wants, and which may be substituted for that which Spain issued to us after the model of her own. For this object plans and measures are prepared for the establishment of a mint on the most perfect and economical footing. The public revenue has sufficed not only for the ordinary, but also for the great extraordinary expenses of the year. It is however to be regretted that experience shows us the necessity of a recourse to more efficacious measures, to obtain from the citizens those moderate direct contributions which have been decreed as indispensably necessary for the preservation of public order, since it appears that the conviction of duty and the stimulus of honour upon which they were founded are totally insufficient.
Industry in the country increases rapidly, and the amount of capital employed in agricultural pursuits becomes every day greater. The necessary means have been taken for the encouragement of an increase of agriculture; and it is to be hoped that the industrious families who are to people the rich plains of the south, will begin to arrive. In proportion as the value of land increases, the necessity is felt of adopting some decisive plan for cutting short those litigations as to the boundaries of property, which impoverish families and desolate the country. The government has adopted such as it could, and has others in preparation, as well as a general basis for the distribution of public lands, which, by encouraging industry, will become a principal source of public revenue. Commerce, assisted by institutions which legalize and encourage it, has preserved its prosperity notwithstanding political circumstances which limit the sphere of its operations. The dangers of the navigation of the river up to this city have been diminished by placing buoys on the inner banks; and it is determined to form an establishment of safe and economical vessels, which will be stationed on all the shoals from the isle of Lobas, and which will
be furnished with signals for the guidance of navigators, both by day and night. The accounts of last year, and the sums required for the ordinary service of the next, are presented on this occasion by the minister of finance for your opinion and deliberation. Finally, Gentlemen, it is impossible that you can contemplate the actual state of the affairs of this province, without directing your attention to a comparison with that in which they appeared three years ago, when a feeling of public virtue brought us together to lay the foundation of those wholesome institutions which have restored to us liberty and a prospect of peace, then lost to us. The new administrations will have to preserve those institutions from the errors and the false zeal of the well-disposed, which the disorganizing activity of bad citizens, and the artful hypocrisy of foreign tyrants, may turn to their own account. Your cordial and zealous co-operation will not be less necessary to the government to preserve than it was to create these institutions. You will not therefore disapprove that it concludes by repeating to you the words which the venerable president of the
great republic of our continent has made use of to its representatives in his last message:—
"There never was a period since the establishment of our revolution, when, regarding the condition of the civilized world, and its bearings on us, there was a greater necessity for devotion in the public servants to their respective duties, or for virtue, patriotism, and union in our constituents."
MANUEL J. GARCIA.
ESTADO de las ENTRADAS y SALIDAS en Septiembre, Octubre, Noviembre, y Deciembre, de 1821.
|El Balance original de Agosto||7½|
|Derechos de Puerto||8,407,6|
|Contribucion de Commercio||850|
|Patentes de Navegacion||102|
|50 Letras de varios Plazos no vencidos||118,056,3½|
|559 Cedulas de à cien Pesos||55,900|
|Papel Mda girado para el Rescate de Esclavos||6,300|
|Ramo de Gobierno, inclusas|
|sus ctas. Subsid||36,760,3|
|de Hacienda, id||54,637,6|
|Chancelacion de Deudas anteriores||146,823,7¾|
|Anticipado a la Policia||1,000|
|Balance en Dinero||510,7¾|
|Letra de Cambio no vencido||1,428,3½|
Buenos Ayres, y Enero 5, 1822.
Esta conforme el balance; con el que he practicado in Tesoreria, y quedo hecho cargo de la cantidad que remitta JUAN MANUEL DE LUCA.
Entradas, Salidas y Existencias que constan del Libro Mayor de la Provincia, del Ao 1822.
|A fin de 1821||7,353,5|
|RENTAS DE 1821.|
|Varias de Receptoria y Policia||229,307,5¾|
|36 Pagariē;s no vencidos||91,301,7||103,498,1¾|
|Depositos en Tesoreria, Receptoria y Policia||12,196,2¼|
|Las Existencias in favor del estado ascienda a||321,039,2|
|Los Pagariē;s y depositos que debe satisfacer, a||103,498,1¾|
|Dejando un Sobrante liquido de||217,541,¼|
|Reditos y amortizacion de las consolidadas||326,890,1||643,791,3|
|Varias no consolidadas||316,901,2|
|GASTOS DE LOS TRES DEPARTAMENTOS.|
|EXISTENCIAS PASADAS A 1823.|
|* Fondos del 6 y del 4% valor intinseco||29,737,7|
|Remesas para la Moneda de Cobre||44,680,4|
|Provincias aliadas, por balances en cuenta||16,649,6|
* A mas de estos fondos publicos, existen en la Receptoria otros en especie que se incorporan en el Libro Mayor del presente año, y se manifestaran en el Estndo de Enero: su valor actual es de 52,444,7½;lo que aumenta el sobrante a 269,985,7¾.
Buenos Ayres, Enero 23 de 1823.
Estado de las Entradus y Salidas desde 1° de Enero hasta 31 de Julio de 1823.
|1° Sobrante del ao de 1822||269,982,7¾|
|2° Rentas Aduana||955,822|
|Exceso de la Moneda de Cobre sobre las Remesas||5,319,4|
|3° FONDOS REINTEGRABLES.|
|1° Deudas redito y amortizacion de las Consolidadas||175,000|
|Otras no Consolidadas||38,527,4¼|
|Premio y Retiro Militar||86,480,2½|
|2° Gastos de Gobierno||255,567,½|
|Fondas del 6 y del 4 P%||32,367,3|
Buenos Aires, Agosto 9 de 1823.
VOL. II. A A
Sobre el Erario de Buenos Aires en 1822, de cada Mil Pesos que el Erario ha recaudado an Ao proximo pasado de 1822. Ha producido el
|Derechos de Puerto||14|
Y de cada Mil Pesos recaudados en dicha forma se han empleado en
|Gastos de 1822.||Gobierno||177||618|
|Quedando en cajas||127|
D. FELIZ DE AZARA's Account of the PAMPA INDIANs.
"CETTE nation disputa le terrein aux fondateurs de Buenos Ayres, avec une vigueur, une constance et une valeur admirable. Les Espagnols après des pertes considérables abandonnèrent la place, mais ils revinrent une seconde fois pour reprendre la fondation de la ville; et comme alors ils étaient forts en cavalerie, les Pampas ne purent leur résister et se retirèrent au sud, à l'endroit où ils sont à présent, Ils y vivaient comme auparavant de la chasse du tatou, du lièvre, du cerf, et des autruches qu' on y trouvait en grande abondance; mais les chevaux marrons ou sauvages s'étant beaucoup multipliés, ils commencèrent à en prendre et à en manger, et c'est ce qu'ils font encore aujourd'hui, qu'ils se nourrissent de la chair de ces animaux et des autres dont nous venons de parler. Les vaches sauvages se multiplièrent dans le pays après les chevaux, et comme les Pampas n'en avaient pas besoin pour vivre
A A 2
ils n'ont jamais pensé à en manger, et n'en mangent point encore aujourd'hui. Ainsi ce bétail ne trouve aucun obstacle à sa multiplication, et s'étendit jusqu'à la rivière Negro, vers le 41° degré de latitude, et à proportion vers l'ouest jusqu'aux limites de Mendoza, et jusqu'aux croupes de la Cordillière de Chile. Les Indiens sauvages de ces cantons voyant arriver des vaches dans leur pays. commencèrent à en manger; et comme il y en avait en abondance, ils vendaient leur superflu aux Araucanos et à d'autres Indiens, et même aux Présidens de cette Audience, qui faisaient cette espèce de commerce.
C'est ainsi que le nombre de ces animaux diminua dans ces contrées occidentales, et ce qui en restait courut du côté de l'Est se concentrer dans le pays des Pampas. De-là vint que plusieurs nations indiennes du côté orientale de cette grande Cordillière et d'autres de la côte Patagonienne vinrent s'établir dans les cantons où il y avait du bétail; ils se lièrent d'amitié avec les Pampas qui avaient déjà une grande quantité de chevaux de selle, et dont les nouveaux venus tirèrent un grand nombre, aussi bien que des vaches, qu'ils allaient vendre à d'autres nations de la Cordillière et
aux Espagnols du Chile. Ils achevèrent ainsi de détruire le reste des vaches sauvages. A la vérité ils furent aidés en cela par les habitans de Mendoza et de Buenos Ayres, qui de leur côté en faisaient un grand dégat pour leur nourriture et pour se procurer des cuirs et du suif.
Les Pampas et les autres nations coalisées mangeant donc du bétail, qui faisait une partie de leur nourriture et l'unique article de leur commerce, commencèrent, au milieu du dernier siècle ou un peu auparavant,* à voler le bétail apprivoisé que les habitans du district de Buenos Ayres possédaient dans leurs pâturages ou parcs. Telle fut l'origine d'une guerre sanglante, parce que les Indiens ne se bornaient pas à voler les troupeaux, et qu'ils tuèrent tous les hommes adultes, ne conservant que les femmes et les jeunes garçons qu'ils emmenèrent avec eux. Il est bien vrai qu'ils en exigent quelques services, et qu'ils en usent comme esclaves ou comme domestiques, jusqu'à ce qu'ils se marient, mais alors ils sont aussi libres que les autres.
Dans le courant de cette guerre ils ont
* In 1738, or 40, according to the Jesuit Falkner, who gives the details of this war.
brûlé beaucoup de maisons de campagne et tué des milliers d'Espagnols. Ils ont souvent ravagé le pays, interrompu pendant long tems la communication de Buenos Ayres avecle Chile et le Perou, et forcé les Espagnols à couvrir la frontière de Buenos Ayres par onze forts, gardés par sept cens vétérans de cavalerie, sans compter les milices. La même chose a eu lieu proportionellement dans les districts de Cordoue et de Mendoza. Il est sûr que dans cette guerre, il y avait plusieurs nations Indiennes coalisées; mais les Pampas en ont toujours fait la principale partie, et il est indubitable qu'ils sont pleins de courage. Le trait suivant peut en donner une idée. Dans une bataille on avait fait prisonniers cinq Pampas; on les mit sur un vaisseau de guerre de 74 canons et de six cent cinquante hommes d'équipage, pour les conduire en Espagne. Au bout de cinq jours de navigation, le capitaine leur permit de se promener dans le vaisseau, et dès l'instant même, ils résolurent de s'emparer du bâtiment en tuant tout l'équipage. Pour cet effet l'un d'eux s'approcha d'un caporal de marine, et voyant qu'il était peu sur ses gardes, il lui enleva le sabre, et dans un instant tua deux pilotes et quatorze mate-
lots ou soldats. Les quatre autres Indiens se jetèrent sur les armes, et comme la garde les défendait, ils se précipitèrent dans la mer et s'y noyèrent, ainsi que le premier qui les imita. Les Jésuites commencèrent à former deux peuplades de ces Indiens,* l'une près du
* De Termeyer, who spent some years in this part of the world, gives the following account of this attempt on the part of the Jesuits.—Rapporto poi a questa ultima nazione, cioè l'Aucae, siccome quella dei Pampas, nessun principio conosce nè di religione, nè d' educazion civile, non che d' umanità coi suoi simili. Ciò non ostante vollero i Gesuiti tentare se le loro appostoliche fatiche impressione far potessero nel duro cuore dei suoi individui. Nel 1746 ne diedero il primo passo. I PP. Giuseppe Cardiel e Tomaso Falkner congregarono con fatica alcune lor famiglie in un posto assai vantaggioso a tutti i bisogni della vita civile e cristiana, e ne fondarono un popolo sotto l'Invocazione di nostra Signora del Pilar di Saragozza. La lor primitiva sede era a 70 leghe distante da Buenos Ayres, chiamata le Serre o Parami del Volcan; non già perchè in realtà vi fossee ciò che appo noi s'intende per tal vocabolo ma perchè v' era un apertura, o restretta strada de cinque leghe di lunghezza (che tal è el significato presso loro tal parola) per cui questi Indiani venivano, e ritornavano dalle interne parti del sud, verso le città Spagnuole. Detto volcan pure distava cento, e più leghe dal lor natio paese, ch' era nella parte orientale della Cordigliera del Perù; sebbene altri della medesima nazione facessero la loro strada per la parte occidentale della medesima Cordigliera, per traficare eziandiò cogli Spagnuoli di Valdivia e della Concessione de Chile e di là ne venissero poscia a commerciar con quegli di Buenos Ayres.—De Termeyer, opuscoli, tom. 5. 258. These two Reductions were, after some years, abandoned, the Jesuits finding it a hopeless case.—Father cardiel writes to the Abbate De Termeyer, on the 25th November, 1779,—“Dopo che io sperimentai la perversa indole degli Indiani Aucaes, et la poca o niuna disposizione ad abbracciare il cristianesimo, pregai i miei superiori ad assegnarmi alla conversione degl' Indiani Taelcus sul Rio del Sauce (proprio loro istabilimento) poichè aveva io notato nelle occasioni, nelle quale famigliarmente li trattai sui Parami del Volcan, che si mostravano assai meglio disposti degli Aucaes, e dei Pampas a ricevere il battesimo, ed a ridursi a civil società. Avendo ciò ottenuto dai miei superiori, mi preparai all’ impresa, scegliendovi due guide, ed interpreti; l'uno era di nazion Pampa, I’ altro del Aucaes, entrambi infedeli, altri non essendone in allora. Malgrado che l'un e che l'altro fossero stati da me ben pagati, regalati e mantenuti, nel più critico punto m’ abbandonarono sulla strada assai perigliosa, ed allorchè appena per arrivar alle lor terre mancavano trenta sole leghe: sicchè il mio progetto vi fu sventato, sicuramente persuaso di non averne perduto il merito.”—De Termeyer, tom. 5. p. 264. The writer of this letter was one of the most distinguished missionaries of the time, and his letter gives a lively picture of the difficulties which, in common with Dobrizhoffer and other Jesuits, he had frequently to contend with. on the subject of these Indians, see Dobrizhoffer, vol. i. p. 130.
Ruisseau Salé, et l'autre plus au sud près d'une petite montagne que l'on appelle improprement le volcan; mais ni l'une ni l'autre ne
subsista. Il y a peu près treize ans que les Pampas firent la paix avec les Espagnols. Cependant ils sont si soupçonneux que, quand je parcourus leur territoire, ils examinèrent scrupuleusement toutes mes démarches, sans jamais se présenter en face, ni se laisser voir, parce que j’avais une bonne escorte. Ainsi ce que j'en ai dit ne vient que des informations que j'ai pu faire sur ceux que j'ai vu à Buenos Ayres. Ils ont une grande quantité d'excellens chevaux et ils les montent comme les charruas. Ils achètent à d’autres Indiens, qui habitent au sud de leur pays et vers la côte des Patagons, leurs habits de peau et les plumes d'autruches, et quant à leurs couvertures et à leurs ponchos ils les tirent des Indiens de la cordillière de chile. Ils joignent à toutes ces marchandises d’autres petits objets qui leur sont propres, comme des boucles, des lacets, des rênes de cheval, du sel, &c. et viennent les vendre à Buenos Ayres, d'où ils rapportent en échange de l'eau de vie, de I'herbe du Paraguay, du sucre, des confitures, des figues et des raisins secs, des éperons, des mors, des couteaux, &c. Souvent ils sont accompagnés par quelques Indiens de la côte Patagonienne et de la Cordillière du Chile;
et de tems en tems les caciques font une visite au viceroi, pour en obtenir quelque présent.
“Je pense que cette nation peut avoir tout au plus quatre cens guerriers. Son langage au plus quatre ceas guerriers. Son langage est différent de tous les autres; mais il n'a aucun son nasal, ni guttural, de sorte qu'on pourrait l'écrire avec les lettres de notre alphabet. Il me semble qu'ils sont moins silencieux que les autres nations, et que leur voix est plus sonore et plus pleine. En effet, quoiqu'ils parlent assez bas dans une conversation ordinaire, cependant lorsqu'ils font leur harangue au viceroi, l'orateur renforce sa voix; et après avoir prononcé trois ou quatre mots, il fait une petite pause, appuyant avec force sur la dernière syllabe, comme un adjudant qui commande l'exercice. Leur taille ne me paroît pas inférieure à l'Espagnole; mais en général, ils ont les membres plus forts, la tête plus ronde et plus grosse, les bras plus courts, la figure plus large et plus sévère que nous et que les autres Indiens, et la couleur moins foncée. Personne parmi eux ne se peint, ni ne se coupe les cheveux. Les hommes en relèvent tous les points en haut, et les attachent avec une courroie ou une corde dont ils se ceignent la tête sur le front. Les femmes
partagent leurs cheveux en deux moitiés égales, de chacune desquelles elles font une queue grosse, longue et serrée comme celle des soldats. Cette double queue ne leur tombe pas par derrière, mais sur les oreilles et ressemble à deux longues cornes qui tombent sur les épaules et le long des bras. De toutes les femmes Indiennes ce sont les plus propres et celles qui se lavent le plus souvent; mais je les crois aussi les plus vaines, les plus orgueilleuses et les moins complaisantes.”
”Les hommes ne font point usage du barbote, et ne se servent d’aucun habillement, quand ils vont à la guerre ou à la chasse, ni quand ils sont à la maison, à moins qu'il ne fasse très froid; mais pour entrer à Buenos Ayres, ils se couvrent d'un poncho. J'ai expliqué ce que c'était. Ceux qui sont plus riches portent un chapeau, une veste et quelque couverture attachée aux reins. Les capitaines ou caciques ont un habit et une veste, présent du viceroi, et une ceinture d’etoffe de Bagota. Mais aucun n'a ni chemises, ni culottes, et ils avertissent de ne pas leur en donner, parcequ'elles les incommodent beaucoup. Les femmes ne se peignent pas la figure, et font usage de pendans d'oreilles, de
colliers, et de bijoux de peu de valeur. Elles s'enveloppent le corps dans un poncho, qui leur couvre entièrement le sein, et ne laisse voir que la figure et les mains. Peut-être chez elles sont-elles moins couvertes. Celles qui sont mariées à des Indiens aisés et leurs filles, se parent davantage. Elles cousent à leur poncho une douzaine de plaques de cuivre, minces, rondes, de trois à six pouces de diamètre, à égale distance les unes des autres. En outre, elles portent des bottes de peau ou de cuir mince, amplement garnies de clous de cuivre, à tête conique et large de six lignes à la base. Leurs brides sont aussi chargées de plaques d'argent, comme celles de leurs maris, ainsi que leurs éperons.
Je n'ai point observé parmi d'autres nations Indiennes cette inégalité de richesses dans les vêtemens et les parures. Ils ont aussi des chefs ou caciques, qui sans avoir le droit de commander, de punir, ni de rien exiger, sont cependant très considérés des autres, qui adoptent ordinairement tout ce qu'ils proposent, parce qu'ils croient qu'ils ont plus de talent, de finesse et de valeur. Chaque chef habite un district séparé avec ceux de sa horde; mais ils se réunissent quand il s'agit de faire la guerre,
ou quand l'intérêt commun le demande. Du reste, ils ne cultivent point la terre, ils ne travaillent point; ils ignorent l'art de coudre et de faire des étoffes; ils ne connaissent ni religion, ni culte, ni soumission, ni lois, ni obligations, ni récompenses, ni châtimens, ni instrumens de musique, ni danses; mais ils s'enivrent souvent. Il y en a parmi eux quelques-uns qui ont un peu de barbe, parce qu'ils proviennent du mêlange de leur race avec celle des femmes et des garçons qu'ils nous ont enlevé à la guerre. Il me paraît que l'amitié conjugale est plus forte entr'eux que chez tous les autres Indiens; que la polygamie et le divorce y sont rares; qu'ils montrent beaucoup de tendresse pour leurs enfans, quoiqu'ils ne leur apprennent rien. Leurs tentes et habitations portatives sont vîte dressées. Ils enfoncent en terre trois pieux de la grosseur du poignet, à quatre pieds de distance, à peu près, l'un de l'autre; celui du milieu est long d'une toise, les autres moins, et tous sont terminés en haut par une petite fourche. A deux toises environ de ces pieux, ils en plantent trois autres en tout semblables, et ils placent horizontalement sur les fourches qui terminent les uns et les autres, trois bâtons ou roseaux, sur lesquels ils étendent
des peaux de cheval, et voilà une tente dressée pour une famille. Elle y couche étendue sur des peaux et toujours sur le dos. S'ils sentent le froid, ils garnissent verticalement avec d’autres peaux les côtés de leur tente. Ils se marient de la même manière que les Charruas; et jusqu'à I'époque du mariage, les enfans vivent à la charge des pères.
Ils ne connaissent ni arcs, ni flèches, et je crois qu'ils n'en ont jamais fait usage. En effet, quoique les anciennes relations en parlent, je crois que leurs auteurs se sont trompés en attribuant aux Pampas les flèches dont faisaient usage les Guaranys leurs alliés, qui faisaient alors la guerre aux Espagnols. Aucune nation sauvage n'a abandonné ses anciennes coûtumes, et elles ressemblent en cela aux quadrupèdes sauvages; elles n'ont surtout point renoncé à leurs flèches, quoique quelques-unes depuis l'arrivée des Rspagnols y aient réuni l'usage d'autres. armes. Ils se servaient anciennement d'un dard ou bâton pointu, avec lequel ils combattaient de près, et même de loin en le lançant; mais ils l'ont allongé, et l'ont converti en une lance longue qui leur est plus utile à cheval, et ils conservent leurs anciennes boules. Il y en a de deux sortes; la première est composée
de trois pierres rondes, grosses comme le poing, recouvertes de peau de vache ou de cheval, et attachées à un centre commun avec des cordons de cuir de la grosseur du doigt, et longs de trois pieds. Ils prennent à la main la plus petite des trois, et après avoir fait tourner les autres avec violence par-dessus leur tête, ils les lancent toutes les trois jusqu'à la distance de cent pas; et elles se roulent et se croisent tellement autour des jambes, du cou ou du corps d'un animal ou d'un homme, qu'il leur est impossible de s'échapper.
L'autre sorte de boule se réduit à une seule pierre, et ils l'appellent boule perdue. Elle est de la même grosseur que les autres, mais lorsqu'ils la font de cuivre ou de plomb, comme cela leur arrive quelquefois, elle est beaucoup plus petite. Elle est recouverte de cuir et attachée à une courroie ou cordon d'environ trois pieds, qu'ils prennent par le bout pour faire tourner la boule comme une fronde, et quand ils la lâchent, elle donne un terrible coup à cent cinquante pas, et même plus loin; car ils la lancent quand leur cheval court à bride abattue. Si l'objet est tout près, ils frappent le coup sans lâcher la boule. Les Pampas excellent à manier ces deux sortes de boules,
pour prendre des chevaux sauvages et d'autres animaux, et ils en portent toujours une grande quantité quand ils vont à la guerre. Au tems de la conquête, ce fut avec cette arme qu'ils enlacèrent et firent périr dans une bataille, Don Diego de Mendoza, frère du fondateur de Buenos Ayres, neuf autres des premiers capitaines qui étaient à cheval, et un beaucoup plus grand nombre d'Espagnols. En attachant des bouchons de paille enflammée à la courroie des boules perdues, ils vinrent à bout d'incendier plusieurs maisons à Buenos Ayres, et même quelques navires. Leur manière de faire la guerre est absolument la même que celle des charruas, que j'ai décrite: mais comme leur pays est plus plat, et qu'il n'a ni rivières, ni bois, ils ne peuvent pas dresser autant d'ambuscades. Ils y suppléent par la sagacité et le courage portés au dernier point, et par la supériorité de leurs chevaux et leur addresse à les manier.
A l'ouest des Pampas sont les Aucas (qui paraissent faire partie des fameux Araucanos du Chile) et beaucoup d'autres nations Indiennes à qui on donne différens noms, aux frontières de la ville de Mendoza, &c. &c.”
A LIST of the GOVERNORS of BUENOS AYRES, from November, 1891-to January, 1821.
|1||Jose Rondean, General, vice Pueyrredon,||Supreme Director ad int. of the Provinces of the Rio de la Plata.||10 Nov. 19||11 Feb. 20||13|
|Jose Saavedra,||General Commandant of the City.||10 Nov.||11 Feb.||13|
|Podro Aguirre, a civilian,||Director Sostituto||31 Jan. 20||4 Feb.||5|
|2||Cabildo||Governors of the City.||11 Feb.||12 Feb.||1|
|3||Mig. Irrygoyan, a Civilian,||Idem and Territory.||12 Feb.||16 Feb.||5|
|4||Manuel de Saraten a Civilian, & Ex-Director.||Governor of the Province.||16 Feb.||5 Mar.||2||4|
|5||Ramon Balcarce,||General||5 Mar.||11 Mar.||7|
|6||Manuel de Sarrates,||Idem.||12 Mar.||2 May||7||2|
|7||Ildefonso Ramos Mexia, a Civilian,||Governor ad interim.||3 May||7 June||5||1|
|8||Ildefonso Ramos Mexia,||Governor and Captain General||8 June||21 June||2|
|9||Cabildo,||Governors of the City.||22 June||23 June||1|
|10||Miguel Estan. Soler, General,||Governor and Captain General of the Province.||23 June||29 June||1|
|11||Cabildo,||Governors of the City.||30 June||4 July||5|
|12||Manuel Dorrego,||Colonel, Governor ad interim.||5 July||26 Sept.||12|
|Marcos Balcarce,||Colonel, Governor Sostituto.||7 July||26 Sept.||11||5|
|13||Martin Rodrigues||General, Governor and Captain General.||27 Sept.||1 Oct.||5|
|14||Cabildo,||Governors, in consequence of the rising of the Civicos.||2 Oct.||5 Oct.||3|
|15||Martin Rodrigues||Governor and Captain General of the Province.||6 Oct.|
|Marcos Balcarce,||Governor, in the absence of the Governor.|
VOL. II. B B
TRISTES OF PERU.
UN corazon afligido
Viendo tardar en esperanza
Con doloroso instrumento
Al compas de un llanto canta y dice
Todo en penas y afliciones
No hay Mengua en mi padecer
Que es esto?
Ya seran mis ojos rios
Ay de mi
The next, in a different metre, was also furnished me by the author D. Agustin Videla y Ortiz.
Dulce bien mio
Que ya el morir
En mi parece
Y antes que muera
En vuestras haras
Mi vida y alma
I cannot refrain from subjoining the following spirited translations, which have been most obligingly placed in my hands.
“Un Corazon afligido.”
With sickness of the fainting heart
(Which hope deferred can bring)
Oppressed to weariness,—apart
From all, I hear him sing,
While Music's saddest notes are heard
To lengthen every mournful word.
“To suffering woe and sorrow,
For me there is no morrow,
My eyes, that fill
With weeping still,
No light from Hope can borrow.
Oh! what is there before me,
That I should not deplore me?
B B 2
The tyrant's chain,
The martyr's pain,
Are all, my soul, before thee.
Alas for Death! for only he
Hath power now to set me free.”
So deep my sorrows, friend beloved,
So great the woes my life hath proved,
That death itself would truly be
Most dear and welcome unto me.
Sink not in thy earthly toil,
But thy spirit to console,
To the powers above a spoil
Rather give thy life and soul.
Route from Mendoza to Santiago de Chile by the Pass of the Portillo.
|Ceniza de Alvarez||4|
|Casas de Piedra||6|
|St. Jago de Chile||9 ½|
Convocatoria al Congreso General.
1. La nacion se reunira en un Congreso Constituente, que se enstalara en Santiago precisamente en 16 de Agosto de presente Ao.
2. El Congreso se compondra de Deputados de los pueblos, libremente elejidos por cada poblacion y con areglo de la poblacion de cada una.
3. La Eleccion sera directa y la base de la Representacion un Deputado por cada quinze mil almas—en las delagaciones donde resultaré una fraccion que pasé de nueve mil de eligira un Deputado mas. Por el censo hecho de las poblaciones asciende el numero de Deputados a 52.
Erario de Chile.
|El redito anual del imprestito asciendeá||400,000|
|Los gastos anuales de Santiago||1,026,948|
|Los de Concepcion||360,000|
|Los de Valdivia||180,000|
|Formando un Total de||1,966,948|
|Entre tanto que el Producto de la Aduana asciende á||1,100,000|
|Y todas los demas rentes a||200,000|
|Dejando un deficit de||666,948|
An Account of the Heights of some of the chief spots on the road of the Great Pass of the Andes, extracted from the "Memorias Astronomicas." The observations were conducted with great care and with an excellent Barometer; by D. Felipe Bauza, a distinguished officer, in the year 1794.
|Names of the places.||Bar. in. Eng. In.||Ther. Faht.||Pies de castille.||French Toises.|
|Santiago de chile||27·39||72||2·864||409·7|
|Casa de las Calaveras||20·64||61||11·590||1658·1|
|Idem de la Cumbre||19·03||45||13·892||1987·4|
|Idem de las Cuevas||20·16||54||12·241||1747·2|
|Idem de los Puquios||21·45||57||10·399||1487·7|
The height of the Pyrenees is 1763 toises, of St. Gothard 1431, and Mont Cenis 1807.
Route from Santiago de Chile to Mendoza by the Pass of Uspallata.
|The Villa de Santa Rosa||19|
|Guardia del Resquardo||13|
|Ojo de Agua||5|
|Laguna del Inca||5|
|Punta de las Vacas||3|
VOL. II. C C
“Cordoba is famous for the beauty of its houses, the number and opulence of its inhabitants, and a celebrated academy; in the richness of its pastures and the multitude of its cattle it has no superior: many thousand mules are annually exported from its estates to the Peruvian market.—Lofty rocks rise in every part of the Cordoban district. A few leagues distant, on the banks of the river Pucara, which washes the city, is a place where lime is made; coming to the place one night, when the sky was calm and the air tranquil, I heard terrible noises like the explosion of cannon, but the natives assured me that these sounds were common to the neighbouring rocks, and happened perpetually. The air confined in the cavities of the mountain, and attempting a forcible passage through the chinks, when stopped by opposing rocks, and reverberated by their windings, bellow after this fearful manner. In the city of Cordoba itself, a hollow murmur, resembling the knocks of a pestle in a wooden mortar, is frequently
heard by night. This low mournful sound runs from one street to another, and is called by the Spaniards el pison, or the paving hammer. The ignorant vulgar believe that some spectre or goblin haunts the street: as for me, I am convinced that it originates in subterraneous wind, which, forcing its way through the interstices of the earth, makes violent endeavours to find a vent, for I observed the lands near the city excavated and fissured in many places by earthquakes.”—Dobrizhoffer, vol. i. p. 40, English Translation.
An ACCOUNT of the various LOANS contracted by the STATES of BRAZIL, BUENOS AYRES, and CHILE.
Capital, £3,200,000, Money,
at 5 per cent interest—came out at 75 per cent.
Dividends, 1st April and 1st October.
at 6 per cent. interest—came out at 85 per cent.
Dividends 12th January and 12 July.
at 6 per cent interest—came out at 70 per cent.
Dividends, 31st March and 30th September.
London: Printed by C. Roworth, Bell Yard, Temple Bar.
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Citation: John van Wyhe, editor. 2002-. The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. (http://darwin-online.org.uk/)
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