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On Monday the 5th, it being a dead calm, we 1768.
December, weighed anchor and towed down the bay; but, a to our great astonishment, when we got abreast Monday 5• of Santa Cruz, the principal fortification, two shot were fired at us. We immediately cast anchor, and sent to the fort to inquire the reason of what had happened: our people brought us word, That the commandant had received no order from the viceroy to let us pass; and that, without such an order, no vessel was ever suffered to go below the fort. It was now, therefore, become necessary, that we should send to the viceroy, to inquire why the necessary order had not been given, as he had notice of our depar. ture, and had thought fit to write me a polite letter, wishing me a good voyage. Our messenger soon returned with an account, that the order had been written fome days, but by an unaccountable negligence not sent.
We did not get under fail till the 7th; and, Wednes. 7. when we had paffed the fort, the pilot desired to be discharged. As soon as he was dismisfed, we were left by our guard-boat, which had hovered about us from the first hour of our being in this place to the last: and Mr. Banks, having been prevented from going afhore at Rio de Janeiro, availed himfelf of her departure to examine the neighbouring islands, where, particularly on one in the mouth of the harbour called Raza, he gathered many fpecies of plants, and caught a variety of infects.
It is remarkable, that, during the last three or four days of our staying in this harbour, the air was loaded with butteflies: they were chiefly of one sort, but in such numbers that thousands were in view in every direction, and the greatest part of them above our maft-head. .
We lay here from the 14th of November to the 7th of December, something more than three weeks, during which time Mr. Monkhouse, our surgeon, was on shore every day to buy our provisions; Dr. Solander was on shore once; I was several times on shore myself, and Mr. Banks also found means to get into the country, notwithstanding the watch that was set over us. I shall, therefore, with the intelligence obtained from these gentlemen, and my own observations, give some account of the town, and the country adjacent.
Rio de Janeiro, or the river of Januarius, was probably so called from its having been discovered on the feast-day of that saint; and the town, which is the capital of the Portuguese dominions in America, derives its name from the river; which indeed is rather an arm of the sea, for it did not appear to receive any confiderable stream of fresh water: it stands on a plain, close to the shore, on the west side of the bay, at the foot of several high mountains which rise behind it. It is neither ill designed nor ill built; the houses, in general, are of stone, and two stories high ; every house having, after the
manner manner of the Portuguese, a little balcony before 1768.
December its windows, and a lattice of wood before the e balcony. I computed its circuit to be about three miles; for it appears to be equal in size to the largest country towns in England, Bristol and Liverpool not excepted; the streets are straight, and of a convenient breadth, interfecting each other at right angles; the greater part, however, lie in a line with the citadel called St. Sebastian, which stands on the top of a hill that commands the town.
It is supplied with water from the neighbouring hills, by an aqueduct, which is raised upon two stories of arches, and is said in fome places to be at a great height from the ground, from which the water is conveyed by pipes into a fountain in the great square that exactly fronts the viceroy's palace. At this fountain great numbers of people are continually waiting for their turn to draw water; and the soldiers, who are posted at the governor's door, find it very diffi. cult to maintain any regularity among them. The water at this fountain however is so bad, that we, who had been two months at sea, confined to that in our casks, which was almost al. ways foul, could not drink it with pleasure. Water of a better quality is laid into some other part of the town, but I could not learn by what means.
The churches are very fine, and there is more religious parade in this place than in any of the
Popish countries in Europe; there is a procession of some parish every day, with various insignia, all splendid and costly in the highest degree : they beg money, and say prayers in great form, at the corner of every street.
While we lay here, one of the churches was rebuilding; and to defray the expence, the parish to which it belonged had leave to beg in proceflion through the whole city once a week, by which very considerable sums were collected. At this ceremony, which was performed by night, all the boys of a certain age were obliged to affift, the sons of gentlemen not being excused. Each of these boys was dressed in a black caffock, with a short red cloak, hanging about as low as the waist, and carried in his hand-a pole about fix or seven feet long, at the end of which was tied a lantern: the number of lanterns was generally above two hundred, and the light they gave was so great, that the people who saw it from the cabbin windows thought the town had been on fire.
ots, however, may pay their devotions at the shrine of any saint in the calendar, without waiting till there is a procession; for before almost every house there is a little cupboard, furnished with a glass window, in which one of these tutelary powers is waiting to be gracious; and to prevent his being out of mind, by being out of sight, a lamp is kept constantly burning before the window of his tabernacle in
the night. The people indeed are by no means remifs in their devotions, for before these faints they pray and sing hymns with such vehemence that in the night they were very diftinctly heard on board the ship, though she lay at the distance of at least half a mile from the town. . , · The government here, as to its form, is mixa ed; it is notwithstanding very despotic in fact. It conlists of the viceroy, the governor of the town, and a council, the number of which I could not learn: without the consent of this council, in which the viceroy has a casting vote, no judicial act should be performed; yet both the viceroy andi governor frequently commit persons to prison at their own pleasure, and fometimes - send them to Lisbon, without acquainting their friends or family with what is Jaid to their charge, or where they may be found.
To restrain the people from travelling into the country, and getting into any district where gold or diamonds may be found, of both which there is much more than the government can otherwise secure, certain bounds are prescribed them, at the discretion of the viceroy, sometimes at a few, and sometimes at many miles distance from the city. On the verge of these limits a guard constantly patroles, and whoever is found beyond it, is immediately seized and thrown into prison: and if a man is, upon any pretence,