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character, is their want of natural affection, an old charge against them, which Mr. Koster's unexceptionable testimony contirms;
they appear,' he says, ' to be less anxious for the life and welfare of their children than any other cast of men who inhabit that country. The cause of this must be found in their dissoluteness: where the marriage laws, which are of all laws the holiest, are disregarded, there will be little natural affection and less social virtue. The condition of the women has been improved, for they no longer perform the drudgery. Both sexes are particularly clean in their persons, and in many of their habits. They are capable of great fatigue, and for that reason are employed as letter-carriers from one province to another, walking day after day, with their goat skin wallets upon their shoulders, at a regular pace, which is not altered by rough or smooth, and with little rest, for months together.-They are short, stout, and large limbed, but with no appearance of muscular strength: the face broad, the nose flat, (this, perhaps, is an artificial deformity,-a fashion retained from their heathen state,) the mouth wide, the eyes deep and small, the hair black, coarse, and lauk;
none of the men have whiskers, and their beards are not thick. The negro character,' Mr. Koster says, is more decided; it is worse, but it is also better.' The Indian seems to be without energy or exertion, equally incapable of great evil or great good. Rich Mulattos and Negroes are not uncommon; there is no instance of a wealthy Indian, nor did he ever see an Indian mechanic. The priesthood is open to them, but to little purpose; Mr. Koster heard of only two Indians who were ordained as priests, and both died from excessive drinking. This is a melancholy picture, drawn as it is by one who would willingly think better of the race if he could. But without inclining to the preposterous system of Helvetius, it may be affirmed that all this is the effect of unfavourable circumstances, and wretched education, degrading the parents generation after generation, and thus by moral nieans producing a physical degeneracy. The fault is in the mould, not in the materials.
Some anecdotes of the late Governor of Seara will shew the state of society in this part of Brazil. He was appointed to the rank before he was twenty years of age;--absolute power should never be entrusted to any man; when entrusted to one so young the nature must indeed be excellent which is not corrupted by it; and he left behind bim the highest character for justice as well as intrepidity. The town was disturbed at night by outrages which were the work of mischief rather than malice: after endeavouring in vain to discover who the offenders were by other means, the governor cloaked himself well, and apprehended some of them with his own hands. The Feitozas were a powerful fanily, or rather clan, in the interior, and in the adjoining captaincy of Piauhi; they set the laws, civil and criminal, (such as they are,') at defiance, and put to death any person who offended them; these mura ders were committed openly and with impunity. The chief of the clair was a colonel of inilitia, and could call together, at a short notice, about a hundred men, which is equal to ten or twenty times the number in a well peopled country. He received deserters, and' men who had committed murder honourably: that is to say, for revenge and not for gain; but he would not receive a robber into his service. Joam Carlos received secret intimation to arrest this ławless chieftain. He sent him word that he should visit him on a certain day and review his regiment. The village in which he tesided is at a considerable distance from Seara, but not many leagues from the coast: the governor went there with ten or twelve persons; Feitoza received him with great courtesy; the men, who had been assembled to make the greatest possible shew, were reviewed and dismissed, fatigued with the day's exercise, many of them having travelled several leagues, and the governor went to Feitoza's house as his guest for the night. When they were all preparing to settle, ħe rose and presented a pistol to his breast, arresting him in the Prince's name; his followers did the same to Feitoza's relations and servants, who were taken by surprize; horses were ready, the chieftain was mounted and carried off with all speed to the sea side, where jungadas were in waiting to take them on board a smack. They arrived there very early in the morning, and just as they got on hoard, Feitoza's people were seen upon the beach, embarking in jangadus to overtake them. But they were too late. It is supposed that Feitoza was in prison at Lisbon when the French entered that city, and that he either died about that time, or was released by them. His people, however, still look for his return. An Englishman feels mortified at seeing a brave and honourable man compelled to have recourse to treachery; such means, however, are not thought dishonourable in a state of society which renders them necessary,--the fault belongs to the circumstances, and the intrepidity of the individual is not the less entitled to praise.
It is wholly and exclusively the fault of the government that the laws are not observed in Portugal; but in great part of Brazil it is as yet impossible that law can have its course.
A scanty population scattered over an immense territory must be in a barbarous state. A great proprietor in Brazil is, in many respects, what the head of a clan was in the Highlands half a century ago: even in cities there is little law, in the Sertain there is none. The Sertanejos therefore have all those qualities which arise from ignorance and independence, a remote government, and a profligate religion.
VOL. XVI. NO. XXXII.
The, men are licentious and yet jealous; their morals inevitably influence the female character, and hence arises a fruitful source of quarrels which usually end in murder. In any matter of trade they will outwit you if they can, and boast of the successful dishonesty; but any other kind of dishonesty is almost unknown among them; in reality there is little temptation to it: in ordinary years the land affords abundance for all, and in seasons of distress, the distress, being a visitation of nature, falls upon all alike.
all alike. With all their defects Mr. Koster thinks them a good race of people, brave, generous, sincere, and hospitable,--and he justly remarks their great superiority to the Peons of Paraguay and the Plata, men who live in the most disgusting state in which human beings have ever been known to exist. The most civilized inhabitants of Europe are not more superior to the Sertanejos, than the Sertanejo is to the Spaniards of these provinces. Indeed the difference between the Brazilians and their Spanish neighbours is almost inexplicable, so infinitely is the advantage on the side of the Portugueze Americans.' The volume before us contains a print of the Sertanejo in his out-of-door dress,-long leggings, rather than gaiters, of.undressed leather, tied tightly round the waist, over cotton drawers or trowsers; a tanned goat-skin over the breast, tied by four strings behind; a leathern jacket, generally thrown over one shoulder; a hat of the same leather, shallow in the crown, and small in the brim; slip-shod slippers of the same colour, which is a rusty brown, and iron spurs upon his naked heels. His arms are a sword, sometimes a large pistol, and always the faca, a knife which serves alike for meals and for murder, which is prohibited on pain of transportation, and which every man wears concealed in his girdle. Withiu doors every thing is cast off except the shirt and drawers. Their houses are small mud cottages, sometimes tiled, more generally thatched with the carnauba leaves. Hammocks serve for beds and for chairs. The better cottages have a table, but the family more frequently squat in a circle upon a mat, and eat their meals upon the floor. The Portugueze retained this custom from the Moors, and had not disused it when they first colonized Brazil: at this day the lower class of Portugueze women sit in the Moorish manner upon the ground; they say they keep their feet warm by this means, a valid reason in a country where, during the winter months, tires would always be desirable, and yet are not in use.
The women seldom leave home, but when they do they wear shoes, and throw a large piece of coarse white cloth over the head and shoulders; a similar fashion may still be seen in Lisbon. No women of free birth are ever seen employed in any kind of labour in the open air, except that occasionally they fetch wood and water when the men are not at home. This seclusion and these in-door habits are also relics of the old state of manners. The children run about naked till they approach the age of puberty; even in Recife boys of six or seven years go naked. Among a people 1 tin this state the pedlar is the great missionary of civilization ; i these men are now finding their way every where with English goods. Before the emigration of the Court, a dress of common printed cotton cost from two to three guineas, the merchants of Recife putting what price they pleased upon their commodities. But no sooner were the ports opened for foreign trade than our manufacturers poured in their goods with blind cupidity, and in such abundance, that every market on this side of South America was glutted, and the articles sold for, less than their prime cost. Ruinous as this was to the speculators, its after-consequences may be beneficial both to. Brazil and England; the goods, in consequence of their low price, were more widely diffused and more generally purchased, and the want having once been excited, the demand is not likely to fall off, when in the course of regular and steady trade things shall bear their fair prices. Vanity, which in a highly improved country leads so many to ruin, is a great civilizer among people in a semi-barbarous state.' Amoug savages the necklace comes before the fig-leaf,--finery goes first, but decency follows; . the half-grown Cupids and Graces will be clothed; the women 9 will go abroad, and mingle in company at home, to display their
dress, and the cotton mills which are poisoning the health and morals of the manufacturers in England, are improving the manners and morals of Brazil, and accelerating the civilization of South America. The pedlars seldom obtain money for their goods :—as in the interior of the United States, they take whatever is offered in barter,
hides, cattle of all kind, and cheese ; --these they carry to market v where they can be exchanged for goods: twelve months sometimes
elapse before the property is once turned over, but the profits are two or three hundred per cent.
Like all people among whom cattle are so abundant as to be of ! little value, the Sertanejos feed chiefly upon feat,,svhich they eat
thrice a day. The number of fast days in Portugal, and the strictness with which this part of the Catholic religion is observed,
have materially injured the agriculture of that country by rendering the demand for cattle utterly insignificant: Mr. Koster has not said in what manner the duty of fasting is observed in Brazil, but it is, most probably, very generally dispeysed with in the Sertam; a stricter observance would be useful there, for it would lead to horticulture, (of which they know nothing;) and to improved intethods of preparing
the arts, their food; gardening is one of the most trumanizing and and cookery, the abuse of which learls hot only to prodigal excess, but also to cruelties which may be called devilish, (as in the manner
now practised for enlarging geese-livers in France !) tends, in the earlier stages of society, by increasing domestic comforts, to the improvement of barbarous nian. Their cheese is excellent when fresh, but after a few weeks it becomes hard and tough ;---only a few persons make butter, and that by shaking the milk in a bottle. Had the Dutch instructed the Pernambucans in these arts, it would have been a compensation for the many evils which they inflicted upon them. The present king of Portugal wished Mr. Mawe to instruct his people in the management of the dairy upon the English system ;-a teacher better qualified for the task might have been baffled by such unwilling pupils :—but when one settler from Holland, Great Britain, or any other part of the world where this most useful branch of domestic industry is understood, shall have established a good dairy upon his own estate, the improvement must necessarily make its way, to the great benefit of Brazil. The extension of its frontier to the Plata and the Uraguay, is an object of less importance.
Having recovered from an accident which detained hiin longer than he had intended, at Seara, Mr. Koster departed, grateful for the hospitality which he had experienced there. One of his friends entrusted him with government papers in a crimson satin bag, which gave bim the power of requesting horses from the several commandants upon the road. He purchased four horses for his return, and engaged three Indians to accompany him. Seara had been saved from absolute famine by the arrival of a vessel laden with mandioc flour from the south, the cargo of which sold for exactly ten times the usual price; the news of the supply had not extended far, and on the second day's journey the Indians found it necessary to sew some hides loosely round their bags of farinha, lest they should be compelled to part with it if the contents were discovered by a starving people. At Aracati, Mr. Koster was entertained in the same munificent manner as on his former visit ;--the hospitality of this generous people was not ill bestowed,--for the English traveller acknowledges it on every occasion with proper feeling. A sailor who had been wrecked upon the coast solicited leave to join his party,—it consisted now of no less than nine persons and eleven horses. The sufferings and the danger of drought were not apprehended upon their return; several showers had fallen, and slight as they were, the effect was astonishing. Rain in the evening will by sunrise have given a greenish tinge to the earth ; if the rain continues, there will be sprouts of grass on the second day, an inch in length, and on the third the grass will be long enough to be picked up by the half-starved cattle. The first heavy rain fell while they were bivouacking for the night; they fastened two cords from shrub to shrub, laid hides upon them, and crowded under this covering for