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bundle the head of an infant appeared; a little boy, almost naked, followed her with a kettle, and two girls, one of whom could but just walk, held her hand and clung to her ragged petticoat, forming altogether a complete group of beggars. The woman stopped, and looked back after the man.
•The man was a Spanish looking figure, with gray hair, a wallet hung at the end of a stick over one shoulder, a reaping-hook in the other hand; he walked off' stoutly, without ever casting a look behind him.
" A kind harvest to you, John Dolan,” cried the postillion, success to ye, Winny, with the quality. There's a luck-penny for the child to begin with," added he, throwing the child a penny. “ Your honour, they're only poor craturs going up the country to beg, while the man goes over to reap the harvest in England. Nor this would not be, neither, if the lord was in it to give 'em employ.'--pp. 164, 165.
We wish that our limits permitted us to introduce our readers to a better acquaintance with Larry, the postillion, or, as he would be called in Ireland, the driver, and to give them some specimens of Irish posting which (we speak from experience) is most accurately described, -still more do we wish we could afford room for a few specimens of the epistolary talents of the said Larry: his letter to his brother, with which the volume concludes, is, to our judgment, quite perfect in its peculiar stile; cunning and simplicity, sense and folly, burlesque and pathos, are there mingled without incongruity or confusion, and present one of the most faithful descriptions of Irish mamers, and one of the best specimens of Irish phraseology which even Miss Edgeworth herself has produced.
The other characters, though not so broad and prominent, are imagined and executed with equal skill, perhaps indeed we should say with greater; as it undoubtedly requires a less common power of conception and expression to give interest and truth to characters not marked with the strong lights and shades of affectation, passion, or national peculiarity. The simple minded dignity of Miss Broadhurst, a great heiress, who has learned to appreciate justly and without vanity, the cause and value of the general adoration which is paid to her, is well contrasted with the modest selfrespect, and ingenuous discretion of her friend Grace Nugent, whose birth is almost obscure, and whose prospects are entirely dependant: both these characters are highly interesting, and are marked with that undefined charm that almost always accompanies portraits drawn from the life. We should here, if we had not already reached our limits, have repeated and enforced our censure of Miss Edgeworth's systematic exclusion of all religious feeling from her characters : in this point, we hope, indeed we believe, that her delineations are unnatural. Grace Nugent surely deserved to be a Christian; and the meek fortitude of Miss Sidney ought not, in consistency, and truth, to be referred to any humbler cause.
Miss Edgeworth's views of this matter are to us entirely incomprehensible, and we have only to hope that she will learn to appreciate more justly the effect which may be produced by the sublimest motives that can influence human character:
• Else wherefore breathes she in a Christian land.' But we must conclude: we opened these volumes with confident expectations of amusement and instruction, we have read them (except in the important article to which we have just alluded) without disappointment; and we now close them with anxious hopes that Miss Edgeworth by the general approbation which we have no doubt they will receive, may be encouraged to continue, and, in one point, to improve, so useful an exercise of her eminent talents.
Art. IX. Travels in the Interior of Brazil; particularly in the
Gold and Diamond Districts of that Country, including a Poyage to the Rio de la Plata. By John Mawe. London.
1812. IT may furnish amusement of no uninteresting kind to speculate
on the degree of civilization and improvement likely to be obtained respectively by the Spanish and Portugueze colonists of South America, who, after an equally long series of grievances and discouragements, may be said to begin together a new career, under circumstances altogether different. At the moment that one of these colonies is endeavouring to shake off the trammels of the parent state, the other is receiving into her bosom her expatriated monarch. The result of these two events, and their influence on so large a portion of the human race, cannot fail of being highly important. Both colonies will, no doubt, finally profit by them, but the impulse communicated by the vigour and spirit of revolutionary principles will probably give the lead to Spanish America ; while the old government of Portugal will tardily admit new regulations, however obvious their advantages may appear. Indeed, it is not at all improbable that, in the hope of reoccupying the throne of Portugal, the advisers of the Prince Regent will recommend the continuance of the present discouraging and repressive system. These men have estates in Portugal, to which they still hope to return, whatever power may ultimately possess it; and a narrow policy prevents them from seeing that, in spite of their efforts, Brazil must ultimately follow the fate of Spanish America.
There are, perhaps, no people in the world more attached to the person of their sovereign than the Portugueze : his arrival at Bahia, therefore, was hailed with the warmest and most lively feelings of joy and gratitude; as if, instead of seeking an asylum among them,
he had undertaken the voyage for no other purpose than to advance their happiness. He was received with all the magnificence which they had the means of displaying, and an immediate offer was made to subscribe a sum of money equal to half a million sterling, to build a suitable palace for the royal family, provided he would condescend to reside there. The inhabitants of Rio de Janeiro were equally well disposed to hail the arrival of the royal visitor ; and were beginning their preparations, when the impolitic and arbitrary proceedings of his ministers turned their loyal and patriotic feelings into those of disgust, even before the appearance of their prince among them. Agents had been sent forward to take forceable possession of the best houses in the town for the use of the regent's suite. The consequence of this ill-judged measure was, that many people of the first rank and respectability, thus dispossessed of their property, abandoned the town altogether, and retired to their farms, from whence the greater part never returned. Another arbitrary act was that of forestalling the narket for the use of the palace, by ordering all the daily supplies to be brought thither bęfore they were exposed to the public.
No material improvements have as yet followed the prince into America. The inquisition, it is true, has been formally abolished, but its effects were neither felt nor dreaded in the Brazils. The general condition of the people appears to be the same as before. The same wretched system of agriculture still prevails; the same difficulty of communication between the various parts of the colony still exists; and the same vexatious restrictions and impositions still continue. There is some consolation, however, in being assured, that the regent has indicated a disposition to patronize every attempt to diffuse among his transatlantic subjects a taste for useful knowledge; that he has already adopted measures for effecting a reform in the institutions for public instruetion; and that he has evinced a love of science by establishing a lectureship on chemistry, to which our countryman Doctor Gardner has had the honour of being appointed. The estination in which Mr. Mawe himself was held by the prince; the missions upon which he was employed; and the ready manner in which all his wishes were gratified, certainly bespeak, in the mind of the regent, a desire to enlarge the boundaries of knowledge, and to promote the welfare of the colonists : but he is unfortunately surrounded by men of contracted and illiberal views.
We now proceed to lay before our readers some account of the book which has given rise to the preceding observations. Mr. Mawe, it appears, undertook in 1804 a voyage of commercial experiment to the Rio de la Plata, with a British licence, and under Spanish colours. His destination was Buenos Ayres; but the
master, ignorant of the navigation of the river, put into the bay of Monte Video, where, by a blundering report made to the governor, he was discovered to be an Englishman; in consequence of which, his property was seized, his papers taken away, and himself thrown into prison. The governor, Pasqual Ruis Huidobro, and his official advisers, were particularly severe against Mr. Mawe, who, in return, consoles himself by reflecting, that they were a set of vagabonds and criminals, refugees from Old Spain, and that their associates were the officers of two Spanish privateers, all Frenchmen, who did not fail to exasperate the antipathy which the governor had imbibed against our countrymen. The consignee of the cargo joined in the persecution of Mr. Mawe, that he might be allowed to get possession of the property; the proceeds of which he afterwards withheld, on the ground that he was not authorized to pay them over to a prisoner. At length, however, he was released from confinement on the intercession of an old lady, who procured two Spaniards to become responsible for his appearance. But his troubles did not end here: in returning to his lodgings, he happened to cast his eye on a placard, which the wind and the rain bad nearly detached from the side of a wall, and which he inconsiderately tore off and put in his pocket. The same night he was seized in his bed and again hurried to prison, where he remained in close confinement for six weeks, and was then released on paying the fees, which amounted to three hundred dollars.
Being now at large, and without employment, his attention was turned to the acquirement of some information respecting Monte Video. It is situated, he tells us, on a basis of granite, rising with a gentle slope to a considerable elevation, at the extremity of a small peninsula ; its population is about 20,000 souls. The inhabitants (except the governor and the French party) are described as humane and polite, the ladies affable, fond of dress, and very neat in their persons; full of vivacity, and courteous to strangers. Provisions cheap and abundant. The environs of the town are agreeably diversified with gently sloping hills and narrow vallies, watered by delightful rivulets; exhibiting, however, few traces of cultivation, except in some small enclosures occupied as gardens by the principal merchants.
Mr. Mawe had not much time to examine the mineralogy of the peninsular mountain of Monte Video; bis evil genius still pursued bim; and, on the arrival of General Beresford's expedition, he was once more ordered into close confinement; but released on stipulating to proceed into the interior, and not to approach withiu forty leagues of the town. He took up his residence at the establishment of Don Juan Martinez, situate on the river Barriga Negra, in the midst of a mountainous country, well watered, and
not destitute of wood. In this district are several great breeding estates, some of which are said to be stocked with 60,000, and others even with 200,000 head of cattle. These herds are managed by a particular race of people from Paraguay, called peons. Sheep are very scarce, and kept merely for the
sake of their wool, which is made into flocks for bedding : their flesh is never eaten. Indeed the inhabitants subsist almost entirely on beef; and, in the midst of innumerable herds, know not the taste of milk, butter, or cheese.
The hovels of the peons consist of a few upright posts wattled with twigs, and plastered with mud : a green hide stretched on sticks serves for the door, a dried hide for a bed, and a horse's skull for a chair. A rod of wood or iron stuck in the ground, and juclining over the fire, is the only utensil for cooking; the juices of the beef keep up the blaze till they are exhausted, when the extinction of the fire is the test that the meat is sufficiently roasted.' We cannot say much in favour of this mode of cookery; nor are we sure that we should think the taste of the viands remarkably improved by the nature of the fuel employed on it, which Mr. Mawe assures us, with an air of perfect sincerity, consists of the carcasses of mares,' who are bred in great numbers for this purpose.
Nothing can be more wretched than the state of agriculture in this part of Spanish America. The few patches of arable land which the colonists hold are uninclosed; a crooked piece of wood dragged by a couple of oxen serves as a plough; the grain comes up amidst a thousand noxious weeds, which choke its growth and prevent its ripening. The whole is cut down together, and carried to a circular pen, into which a troop of mares are turned, and kept on the gallop, till the grain is supposed to be freed from the stalk. So little understood, indeed, are all the concerns of agriculture, that the proprietor of an estate worth 20,000 dollars, (a very large one in this country,) can barely subsist upon it. The consequence is, that there are few marriages. Mr. Mawe informs us, that it is not, uncommon to find estates larger than an English county with hardly more than a hundred labourers upon them, all men, who subsist on the sale of a little corn, which each is permitted to raise.
The population is composed of 1. European Spaniards; 2. Creoles, the legitimate descendants of Spaniards; 3. Mestizos, the offspring of European and Indian parents ; 4. Indians, almost all of whom have some mixture of Spanish blood; 5. Brown mixtures of Europeans and African negroes; 6. Mulattoes of various degrees. All these intermix without restraint, producing new and ever-multiplying varieties. They have all the vices of the European settlers, (who are not generally of the best description,) without any of the virtues which education confers. A rigorous government, an intolerant priesthood, and the pernicious