« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
sea-side with maize, cakes, and eggs, and barter August, 1799, at three in the morning) the temthem for fish. Eggs are the small change in Cu- perature of the salt water in the pits 32-5°, while mana, Caraccas, and other provinces of Venezuela, the air in the shade was 27.2°, and the sand on where copper coin is unknown; the smallest the coast at six inches depth 42.5o. piece in circulation being a medio-real in silver, The royal administration of the salt-works of worth twopence-halfpenny. If one goes into a Araya, dates only from the year 1792. Before shop to buy something worth less than twopence that period they were in the hands of Indian hallpenny, they give as change two or three eggs; fishermen, who manufactured salt at their pleafor a dozen of eggs there is worth only twopence- sure, and sold it, paying the government the halfpenny. That is also the price of a measure moderate sum of 300 piastres. The price of the of excellent milk, about a quart. A sheep is sold fanega was then four reals (eight of these reals for a dollar; a fine turkey for twenty or twenty- are equivalent to a piastre, or 105 sous French five pence; a fowl for fivepence; a fat capon for money, or 4s. 4fd. English); but the salt was from sevenpence-halfpenny to tenpence; a duck extremely impure, gray, mixed with earthy parat the same price; game and wild-fowl are fre- ticles, and surcharged with muriate and sulphate quently sold cheaper than butcher's meat; and of magnesia. As the manufacture or labor of the all those articles are still cheaper in the small salt-makers was also carried on in the most irtowns of the interior.'
regular manner, salt was often wanted for curing I lived,' says Lavaysse, at the best and meat and fish—a circumstance that has a powerdearest hotel in Cumana, at a dollar per day, in- ful influence, in these countries, on the progress cluding the expenses of my son and servant. of industry, as the lower class of people live on They gave us for breakfast, cold meats, fish, fish, and a small portion of tasajo. Since the chocolate, coffee, tea, and Spanish wine : an ex- province of Cumana has become dependent on cellent dinner, with Spanish and French wines, the intendancy of Caraccas, the sale of salt is coffee, and liqueurs: in the evening chocolate; under the excise; and the fanega, which the I was well lodged and lighted. I should have Guayquerias sold at half a piastre, costs a piastre expended but half that sum if I had gone to and a half. This augmentation of price is slightly board and lodge in a family. In short, there is compensated by a greater purity of the salt, and not a country in the world where one may live by the facility with which the fishermen and cheaper than in the province of Cumana. An farmers can procure. it in abundance during the excellent dinner may be had there for tenpence, whole year. The salt-works of Araya yielded not including wine, which does not cost more the treasury in 1799 a clear income of 8000 than fivepence per bottle to those who buy a piastres.'. quantity of it. Poor people drink punch, which The other towns of any note in this province is at a very low rate, for it does not cost above are Barcelona, a place of growing importance, one penny per quart.'
especially in a commercial view; Cariaco, surThe following description of the new salt-works rounded with extremely fertile plains, but of a in the neighbourhood of Araya, from the same hot and unhealthy climate; Carupano, built at pen, is worthy of attention. The new salt- the opening of two fine valleys, watered by two works of Araya have five reservoirs or pits, the large rivers ; Rio Caribe, whose valley is the largest of which have a regular form, and temple of this country; Cumanacoa, surrounded 2300 square toises surface. Their mean depth is with high mountains, and of rather a cold clieight inches. Use is made both of the rain mate, though it is not more than 104 toises above waters, which by filtration collect at the lowest the level of the sea; and several missionary part of the plain, and of the water of the sea, establishments near the rivers and on the great which enters by canals, or martellières, when plains, inhabited chiefly by Indians, who live in the flood-ride is favored by the winds. The mud-huts, and cultivate their gardens, together situation of these salt-works is less advantageous with a large plot of ground which is common to than that of the mere. The waters which fall all, and which is generally an indigo or sugar into the latter pass over steeper slopes, washing plantation. Near Cumanacon is the great mouna greater extent of ground. The natives make tain Tumiriquiri, a rast rocky wall, rising from use of hand-pumps to convey the sea-water from the forest; in one part the chain is broken by a one principal reservoir into the pits. It would precipice 900 feet wide, filled with trees, whose nevertheless be easy enough to employ the wind branches entwine completely with each other; as the moving power, since the breeze always through this crevice the Rio Jagua flows, and it blows strong on these coasts. The earth already is the abode of the jaguar, or American tiger, washed is never carried away here, as is the cus- which is here very large and ravenous. Flames tom from time to time in the island of Margarita; occasionally issue from two caverns in this prepor have wells been dug in the muriatiferous cipice that may be seen at a great distance. The clay, to find strata richer in muriate of soda. mountain is about 4400 feet abore the level of The salt men gerorally complain of want of rain; the sea; its paths are traversed on mules, which and in the new salt-works it appears difficult to are so sure footed, that an accident seldom hapdetermine what is the quantity of salt that is pens. In a valley near this ridge is the cave of owing solely to the waters of the sea. The na- Guacharo, with a river running through it nearly tives estimate it at a sixth of the total produce. thirty feet wide, and inhabited by a vast number The evaporation is extremely strong, and favored of nocturnal birds, who build their nests in its by the constant motion of the air; so that the arches. Once a-year the Indians destroy the salt is collected in eighteen or twenty days after young for the sake of a layer of fat, which cothe pits are filled. Humboldt found (the 19th of vers the abdomen, which is perfectly free from
smell, and will keep for twelve months without sists of two parts, united by an isthmus, scarcely becoming rancid. The monks purchase this oil more than from eighty to 100 paces broad, and in for the purpose of cooking. These birds, called some places not more than ten or twelve feet guacharoes, utter a mournsul cry, which the In- above the sea. There are three ports in the dians ascribe to the souls that are forced to go island, Pampetar, Puerto de la Mar, and Puerto through this cave to the other world.
del Norte; the former being the most important * They consider,' says Humboldt,“ that they are for its trade. The population is about 16,000. enabled to obtain permission to go out only when It has only three rivulets, just sufficient to turn their conduct in this life has been without re- mills; the water of the little river near Assumpproach. If it has been otherwise, they are retained cion is impregnated with sulphureted iron, magfor a shorter or longer time, according to the nesia, &c., so that the inhabitants prefer drinking heinousness of their offences. This dark, wretched, water from ponds, though it is always muddy. and mournful abode, draws from them the mourn- There is scarcely enough agriculture to maintain ings and plaintive cries heard without.
the people. Provision is cheaper here than at • The Indians have so little doubt of this fable, Cumana. supported hy tradition, being a sacred truth, com- This island is famous for pariots and other rare manding the utmost respect, that, immediately birds ; scarcely a vessel leaves its ports without after the death of their parents or friends, they carrying away some of them. The manufactures repair to the mouth of the cavern to ascertain are cotton stockings and hammocks of a pecuwhether their sonls have met with any impediment. liarly excellent quality; but the fisheries are the If they think they have not distinguished the principal objects of trade; more than 300 Indians voice of the deceased, they withdraw overjoyed, are employed in them; the quantity taken is inand celebrate the event by inebriety, and dances credible, and of innumerable kinds, the most characteristic of their felicity; but, if they imagine common being the mullet, something like a herthey hare heard the voice of the defunct, they ring. Salt is remarkably cheap; à barrel, of hasten to drown their grief in intoxicating li- about 300 pounds, selling for twelvepence-halfquors, in the midst of dances adapted to paint penny. their despair. So, whatever may be the lot of The province of Maracaibo, round the lake of the departed soul, his relations and friends give that name, extends but a little way into the land: themselves up to the same excesses : there is no it is about 100 miles in length. The soil is undifference but in the character of the dance. fruitful on the east and west shores; but, on the
* All the Indians of the government of Cumana south, it is equal to that of the finest land in and Orinoco not converted to the faith, and even South America; the climate is generally hot and many of those who appear to be so, have, not- unhealthy, except in the south, near the snowy withstanding, as much respect for this opinion mountains of Merida. It is peopled by about as their ancestors could possibly have had. It 174,000 persons, chiefly Indians; a few whites appears that it is not, like so many others of its only have settled on the borders of the lake tokind, the child of imposture or fanaticism; for it wards the west. The towns on this lake are is not accompanied with any religious ceremony, mostly built on posts of iron-wood, which bethe expense of which would increase the revenue comes like a mass of stone from the quality of of the inventor's benefice. The cavern itself the water. The city of Maracaibo stands about shows nu vestige of superstition having at any six leagues from the sea, in a dry hot climate and time obtained there the least monument of the on a sandy soil. The south wind, from its insaempire imposture might have wished to exercise lubrity, is here called the Destroyer; violent over credulity. This prejudice then is solely the storms of thunder and lightning, with deluges of effect of fear, ever ingenious in creating phan- rain, are prevalent;'but they are desirable, as, in toms, and in imagining those things which Hatter failure of them, earthquakes are experienced. the illusion. Among the Indians 200 leagues The town is built on the shore of a small gulf from the cavern, to go down into Guacharo, is near Maracaibo Point; many of the houses are synonymous with to die.'
built of lime and sand, but however cheap tiles The forests of this country abound in monkeys are, the inhabitants, from an idea of greater of every kind, the most remarkable of which is safety, obstinately adhere to the practice of cothe araqnato, about three feet high, having its vering the handsomest with a kind of reed called whole body covered with a thick coat of fur of a enea, growing on the borders of the lake. This reddish-brown color; its face is rather black, and mixture of reeds and tiles has a disagreeable efits beard long, and its eye, voice, and gait very fect, and from their combustible nature, they keep melancholy. It is not vivacious as monkeys ge- the city in constant danger. The most noble fanerally are, and the noise it makes, especially on milies are the descendants of the first conan approaching change of weather, is singularly querors; of these there are more than thirty, but dismal. The valleys and banks of the rivers most of them are poor, and the sense of their ahound in Brasil and log-wond. The population high extraction makes them ashamed of labor, of Barcelona and Cumana is about 100,000, one and remarkably indolent. There are about half of whoin arc Jadians.
25,000 inhabitants, of which 5000 are negroes, The island of Margarita forins a separate go- who are all artisans of different descriptions. vernment from that of Cumana; it is situated in · Notwithstanding the barrenness of resources 10° 56' N. lat., and 64° and 65° W. long., being which education finds at Maracaibo,' Depons about forty-eight miles long and eighteen broad. says, “we there see young persons so favored by It was famous for pearls, but the fishery has ceasec nature, that the slightest elementary instruction for more than a century past. This island con- at once developes in them all the faculties, which
in Europe do not manifest themselves until after the Caroni. The soil is fertile in the extreme, long study, and the care of the best teachers. the rirers periodically overflowing their banks, What adds to the singularity of the phenomenon and leaving behind them a slime as prolific as is, that this excess of natural genius frequently the Vile; but this fine district is nearly waste, becomes prejudicial to the tranquillity of the and a harbour for a number of cannibal tribes, of fatnilies of Maracaibo; for it is enough for many which the Caribs are the most formidable. The of these young men to know the conjugation and indigenous inhabitants are about 30,000, united government of the verbs, in order to be qualified into missions, the rest are independent Indians, to write pieces, whose subtilty would appear to who bave not embraced Christianity; in the the knavish advocate better than the productions whole, constituting a population of 52,000 perof the counsel who establishes his reasons on the sons. Cattle constitute the riches of the province, principles of the civil law. Such suits as should in the export of which, and of a little tobacco, never have been instituted, or which the tribunals cotton, and indigo, their trade consists. Angoswould instantly have decided, become intermin- tura is the chief place; it is about fifty leagues able and ruinous by the sophisms with which west of the confluence of the Caroni; when the these scribblers envelope in darkness causes the water is high, the quays are frequently overflowed, most simple and clear. This disease, very preva- and the caymans or crocodiles are sometimes seen lent at Maracaibo, is by no means a stranger in in the streets. Notwithstanding its low situation other Spanish territories. The penal laws which it enjoys a mild temperature, Reaumur's thermothe legislature has been forced to enact, to lessen meter scarcely rising to 24° in the hottest season. the number of these imps of chicane, whom they The province of Varinas divides the territories call pendolistas (quick writers), literally prove of the former government of Caraccas from those that the evil is general enough.
of Condinamarca. It is intersected by large 'In allowing that the inhabitants of Maracaibo and numerous rirers, which inundate and fertihave activity, courage, and genius,' says the same lise its extensive plains. In one of the mounwriter, 'we have nothing more to say in their tainous ridges of the country the Apure rises, favor. They are reproached with having very which, after running a course of more than 500 little regard to their word, and with thinking miles, falls into the Orinoco by several mouths, themselves not bound by their signature, until receiving on its way the waters of numerous after they have in vain endeavoured to release other streams, the largest of which are the Santo themselves from it by law. Their reputation in Domingo and Portuguese. Here also the this respect is so well established, that all strangers Aranca and the Meta are among the fine rivers whom business draws to Maracaibo, say it is that intersect this country.
Its total popumuch better to form connexions of interest with lation amounted in 1807, to 141,000. the women than with the men, because they alone most remarkable features are its extensive plains, have there that good faith and firmness which, in covered with luxuriant herbage and feeding inevery other part, is the peculiar heritage of the numerable herds of cattle. Its chiefs towns are
Varinas, San Jayme, San Fernando de Apure, Since the course of description has led me,' Pedraga and San Antonia. he adds, “to speak of the women of Maracaibo, Santa Fé lies on the west of the eastern Andes; I ought not to let it be unknown that they are in it is very mountainous, but none of the summits their youth paragons of modesty; and in mar- of the chain in this country reach the region of riage, faithful wives, and excellent mothers of eternal snows, though they are very near it. The families. Affection for their husbands, the cares lake Guatavita is one of the curiosities of this of their household, and the education of their province. The following description of it is from children, are the objects which divide all their the work entitled Colombia :moments, and occupy all their solicitude. They 'It is situate on the ridge of the Zipaquira mounknow not, however, before marriage, any other tains, north of the capital, in a wild and solitary amusement than music. Their favorite instru- spot, at the height of more than 8700 feet above ment is the harp. There are few houses in which the sea. It is a small oval piece of water, in a the harmonious sound of this instrument is not deep hollow of the same form, round which are heard every evening, and every day of festival.' cut ranges of steps, reaching to the brink of the
The other towns of this province are Truxillo, lake, having served most probably for some reGibraltar, Paruate, Las Barbacoas, and San Pe- ligious ceremonies in use among the ancient dro; Truxillo is celebrated for superior woollen possessors of this country. As it was supposed manufactures, and excellent cheese.
that a great quantity of treasure had been thrown Guiana, or Guayana, is an immense province, into this lake, when Quesadi
. conquered the the precise boundaries of which cannot be ascer- kingdom of Cundinamarca, the Spaniards attained. On the east, its shore extends to the tempted to cut a canal through the mountain of mouth of the Orinoco, about thirty leagues, and which its banks are composed, in order to drain westward it reaches to the river Yapura ; besides off the waters; but their design does not appear which, it stretches along the Orinoco 400 leagues to have succeeded, for, after considerable excato the Rio Portuguesa. Besides this vast river, vations, it has been left off at little more than it has the Caroni, the Aruy, and the Caura, on half the requisite depth.' the north; on the south, the Guaviare, the Yu- The same work thus describes two other grand ritta, and the Atalapo; and, on the west, the natural objects in this country :Suapure, the Sippapu, besides a multitude of “The cataract of the Tequendama, by which smaller streams. This province is divided into the river Funza joins the great Magdalena, is the upper and lower, one east and the other west of most noted object in the country near the capital.
The Funza, or Bogota, after receiving the waters ready mentioned-Antioquia, famous for its gold of the numerous small rivers which flow through mines, worked by 800 negroes-San Juan de the great plain, is about 140 feet in breadth, a Los Llanos—the large province of Popayan, in short distance above the fall; approaching the which is a pass of the Andes, 11,499 feet above crevice through which it dashes, its breadth is the level of the sea, and not more than a foot diminished to thirty-five, when, with accumulated and a half broad, where travellers can with the force, it rushes down a perpendicular rock at two greatest dithculty pass each other-Quixos— bounds, to the astonishing depth of 600 feet, into Jaen de Bracamoras Maynas — Quito San a dark and unfathomable gulf, out of which the Miguel de Ibavia-Otabalo—Latacunga-Rioriver again issues under the name of Rio Meta, bamba --- Chimbo — Guyaquil — Cuenca -- and and continues its course, by an immense descent, Loxa. Quito is famous for the loftiest summits ull it joins the great river of Magdalena. of the Andes, of which we have already spoken,
• The crevice of Icononzo is in the centre of and for the volcanoes of Pichincha and Cotopaxi, the valley of Pandi, and appears to have been the loftiest volcano in the world. formed by some convulsion of nature, which has "A most singular monument is observable on rent asunder the mountain. At the height of the top of the dike or chain of Tiopullo, connearly 300 feet above the torrent (which forms sisting of a tumulus, and the ruins of one of the beantiful cascades on entering and quitting the Peruvian palaces called tambos, situate in a crevice) are seated these extraordinary bridges, plain covered with pumice-stones. The tumulus, one under the other; the breadth of the upper if it be one, is upwards of 200 feet high, and is one being about forty feet, and its length up-supposed to have been the burying-place of a wards of fifty, composed of solid rock, in the chief. The palace is south-west of this hillock, form of an arch, seven or eight feet thick at its nine miles from the crater of Cotopaxi, and thirty centre. Below this, and rather advanced on one from Quito. It is in the form of a square, each side of it, at the depth of sixty feet, is another side being about 100 feet in length, with four bridge, formed still more singularly; for as the great door-ways, and eight chambers. Its walls mountain appears to have been rent away, or are more than three feet thick, formed of large drawn from the upper, the inferior one seems to stones, regularly cut and laid in courses, and the have fallen from the mountain, and three enor- whole is in tolerable preservation. It is called mous masses of rock have descended from the the palace of Callo. The great curiosity of this opposite sides of the chasm, in such a manner edifice consists in the beauty of the workmanthat the upper mass forms the key of the other ship, as all the stones are cut into parallelopipetwo. This lower bridge cannot be visited with- dons, and laid in regular courses, and so nicely out much risk, as a narrow path alone leads to joined, that were it not that each stone is conit along the brink of the precipice. In the centre vexly and obliquely cut on the outside, their is a hole, through which the abyss below can be joints would not be visible.' seen, and numberless flights of nocturnal birds Quito is about 9510 feet above the level of the are observed hovering over the water, which flows sea, having behind it the conical summit of Jathrough so dark a cavern that the sides cannot rirac, immediately under that of Pichincha. be distinguished.'
The state of society in this country is much Bogota, the capital of this province, is a large improved, and is still ameliorating. On this suband handsome city, with about 30,000 inhabi- ject we shall make a short extract from captain tants; the plain in its neighbourhood is so fer- Hall' concise and interesting work, and with tile that it yields two harvests in the year. Here this we must conclude, though much more might is one of the mints of Cundinamarca, the other be said on so fruitful a subject. is at Popayan. Besides the capital there are •Under the Spanish government the political Tocaima, La Villa de la Purification, Honda, distinctions, which separated these various classes Mariquita, Muzo, Tunja, Leiva, Velez, San Gil, of inhabitants, were almost as numerous as, and and Socorbo. This province is famed for its infinitely more odious than, their physical variegold, silver, gems, salt, and coal, and for its ties of features and complexion. By the laws of fruitful plains, which breed numbers of horses, the Indies, the Indians were not only cut off from and mules, which are exported to Peru. The every civil employment or distinction, but were woods abound with game and wild animals, and even denied the dignity of rational beings, being the rivers with fish and alligators.
held in a state of perpetual pupilage, under the After these, in their order, are the provinces authority, principally, of their curates, who would of Merida with its capital of the same name-of hardly permit them to hold any intercourse with Santa Marta, with its immense and rapid rivers, the rest of the inhabitants; the people of color crossed by bridges made of the roots of plants were little better treated : besides being rigidly twisted together into immense ropes and stretch- excluded from every employment of honor or ed over them-Carthagena, of which copious men- consideration in the state, they were subjected to tion bas been made in the article AMERICA- personal distinctions, the more painful because Darien, on the gulf of that name—Panama, con- they could have no other object than that of grasisting of abrupt and broken chains of moun- tifying the vanity of the privileged class at the tains, between two seas, being for the most part expense of their unfortunate brethren. Such was covered with thick forests—Veragua, the most the law prohibiting the women of color from northerly of the provinces of Tierra Firme, a wearing the manto, or black dress used at church, mountainous and rugged country, with vast fo- or from wearing any ornament of gold or silver; rests, interspersed with rich and fruitful valleys- custom, besides, prohibited them the use of the Choco, the peculiarities of which we have al- alfombra, or carpet, at their devotions, and that
of an umbrella to screen them from the sun in lombia reckons among her best and brares:
smell in rabbits.
COLOMNA (Fabius), a very learned botanist, COLONEL, in military affairs, the commanding
French and Spanish armies, this title is confined
camp: A colonel may put an officer of his regi-
ment in arrest, but must acquaint the general with
it. He is not allowed a guard, but only a sentry
COLONEL-LIEUTENANT, the second in com-
or other person of the first eminence, is cnionel.
the rank of colonel in the army, without having
COLONIA, in ancient geography, a town o
now Colchester in Essex, according to Camden,
Colonia EQUESTRIS, in ancient geography,
a noble colony on the Lacus Lemanus. It ap
it is supposed to have stood between Lausanne
CoʻLONELSHIP, n. s. ) originally colonialis the in Cavo Lemano, according to Lucan'sexpression,
name was Noviodunum; hence its modern name,
Noyon, or, as some suppose, Nevers.
situated on the right or west side of the Anas
Spenser on Ireland.
or Guadiana; but now on the left or east side,
from the river's shifting its bed or channel, ard
called Medelin, a town in Estremadura.
COLONIA MORINORUM, a town of Gallia Bel-
Milton. gica, thought to be Tarvenna, the capital of the
Morini; now called Terroucn.
Colonia TRAJANA, a town of Belgica, called
Swift. of the thirtieth legion; now Kellen, in Cleres