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the detection which caused all my present misfortunes. It will be recollected that I mentioned my being seen writing by the white man; he seemed much surprised at it, and I observed that in his communications with me afterwards he was not so free as before. He once asked me what I had been writing; ; I told him it was a memorandum which I kept of my journey, and showed some parts of it; this rendered him still more gloomy, and for some time before my being taken up lie had avoided visiting me, alledging that he was unwell. His gloomy and suspicious temper had led him to imagine that I was making observations for the purpose of doing him an injury; he therefore resolved to give information to the natives of my haring discovered their mines, knowing that the consequence of my detection would be immediate death. Althougb I did not see him after my being brought from the nine, yet I had reasons for believing that he directed all their councils; and the discovery of the ore which I had buried sufficiently proved it, as it was secreted in such a manner as to elude the most rigid scrutiny.

In the evening two of the brothers of my benefactress came to the hut, ready to conduct me on my journey. My horses having been brought up by Edom, and all things being in readiness, we started as soon as the moon arose. They conducted me a considerable distance on my way, and when they were ready to leave me I made them presents of beads and some other articles, with which they were highly satisfied.

I now determined to steer a west southwesterly course, as I wished to reach the confines of Mexico, from which I was still a considerable distance. It was now the 12th of October, and I calculated it would take me at least two months to reach the place of my destination, as in many places the ways were almost impassable.

Before I proceed I will give a more particular account of the Mnacedeus Indians than I have hitherto done: the country they inhabit is situated about 350 miles southeast from Mexico; the extent of their tribe I was never able to ascertain, which was partly owing to my ignorance of their language, and partly to a jealousy which they have imbibed against all strangers. That part of the country which I saw was fertile, the soil being very rich. The growth of the forest is black and white oak, hickory, walnut, white pine, cedar,* spruce pine, and a variety of others which I did not particularly notice. The lofty magnolia rears its magnificent head far above all others; it is the most beautiful tree which grows, and is deservedly celebrated by travellers and naturalists.

• The cedars are very majestic; I measured one which was our diet in dam ter ajo opwards of aborty-eight leer clear of limbs

These Indians have two towns wbich I saw, one containing about 150 huts, and the other about twice that number. The huts are constructed in a neaten manner than any I had before seen; they consist of poles driven into the ground a proper distance, in proportion to the size of the hut; these are fastened at the top with strong thongs of buffalo bide, or twigs of trees: they are then interlaced with strips of bark, which are rubbed smooth, and some of them stained with the juice of berries, which gives them a very neat appearance. They have a raised bench of earth all around their huts, on which they sleep at night. Their cooking utensils are few in number, as they dry the principal part of their provisions in the air.

Their arms, marriages, burials, &c. I have already described, and shall therefore conclude with a few observations on the tribe in general. They are honest, and as far as the nature of a savage life will admit, are industrious; their dispositions are naturally mild, and on the whole they are far from being so savage as many tribes who are situated on the borders of the Red river. They are jealous of admitting white men among them, although I have reason to think they have been visited by very few; their jealousy is principally on account of their mine of

v platina, which is encouraged by the white man who is settled

among them.

Platina is a metal which has been but recently discovered, but is very valuable, and well worthy the attention of government. I estimated that the mine would yield upwards of a million of pounds sterling worth of platina ; for the veins are so rich, that without any proper tools, I got more than a hundred and twenty ponnds of pure metal, in the three visits I made to the nine; and that under, every disadvantage, and without remaining more than an hour each time.


Natural History of the Earth and of the effects of the Deluge.

The Earth or terraqueous globe is a congeries of many different bodies. It contains sand, clay, various sorts of earth, stones, salts of various kinds, sulphur, bitumen, metals, minerals, and other fossils almost innumerable. Upon the earth are the waters, and on or near its surface animals or vegetables of all kinds. But how was this whole mass formed into a sphere or globe, containing mountains, valleys, seas, rivers, and islands ? Đes Cartes advances one hypothesis, Dr. Burnet another, Dr. Woodward again another, Mr. Whiston, also M. Buffon, and of late Dr. Hutton and Mr. Whitehurst, have each presented us with a new Theory. And each world-builder advances various reasons for his own hypothesis. But none of those reasons are demonstrative : vay several of them have been shewn to be very improbable.

That the earth is round, manifestly appears from the eclipses of the moon, in all which the shadow appears circular, which way soever it be projected. The natural cause of its roundness is supposed to be the great principle of attraction, which the Creator, it seems has stamped on all the matter of the universe, whereby all bodies and all the parts of bodies continually attract cach other. Through this, as all the parts of bodies tend naturally to their centre, so they take a globous figure, unless some other more prevalent cause interpose. Hence drops of quicksilver put on a spherical form, the parts strongly attracting each other : drops of water have the same form when falling in the air, but are only half round when they lie on a hard body, because their gravity overpowers their attraction. Yet the earth is not exaetly round, but swells out towards the equator, and is flatter towards the poles, as has been undeniably proved by the observations of modern mathematicians. Now the question here is, Why the natural cause which gave the earth so much of a spherical figure, did not make it a complete and exact sphere?

We know it has been usual to account for this spheroidal figure of the earth from its diurnal rotation on its axis, produeing a greater centrifugal force of the equatorial than of the polar parts; but this explication can by no means be deemed sufficient. The globe we inhabit is composed of two very different kinds of matter, earth and water. The former has a very considerable power of cohesion, besides the gravitating power : The latter has very little cohesion, and its parts may be separated from each other by whatever will overcome its weight. It follows, therefore, that the solid parts of the earth, resisting, by their cohesion, the centrifugal force more than the vater, ought not to dilate so much. The waters of the ocean, therefore, abont the Equator, according to this hypothesis, ought to swell up and overflow the land : and this they ought to do at this present moment as much as at the first creation.That this ought to be the case is evident from the phenomena of the tides. It is not to be doubted but that the attraction of the moon affects the solid earth as well as the sea : But because of the greater cohesion of the parts of the former, it cannot yield as the ocean does, and therefore the waters are raised to some height above it. Mr. Whitehurst and some others, solve

this difficulty by supposing ihe earth to have been originally fluid. But this is arguing in a circle : for if we desire them to prove this original fluidity, they will do it by the spheroidal figure of the earth : and if the cause of the spheroidal figure is required, they refer us to the original fluidity. This difficulty, therefore, is inexplicable on this Theory, and probably on any other. It must, no doubt, be referred to the Will of God. It may be observed here, that what the earth loses of its spherical or globous figure by mountains and vales, is nothing considerable : The highest eminence upon the earth being scarce equivalent to the smallest protuberance on the surface of an orange. The diameter of the earth is supposed to be 7967 miles, the greater diameter, viz. that at the Equator, exceeding the less, which is from pole to pole, about thirty four miles.

There are many other difficulties, which no theory yet invented can account for. For instance, in many places, such as the isthmus of Darien, a narrow neck of land is interposed betwixt two vast oceans. These beat upon it on either side with vast force : yet the isthmus is never broke down or diminished. The case is the same with the isthmus of Suez, which joins Asia and Africa, and with that which joins the Morea or ancient Peloponesus to the continent. The difficulty is by what natural power, or law, are these narrow necks of land preserved amidst the waters, which threaten them on both sides with destruction ?

Again : the surface of the earth is by no means smooth and equal; but in some places raised into enormous ridges of mountains, and in other's sunk down in such a manner as to form deep valleys. These mountains, though they have been

. exposed to all the injuries of the weather for many thousand years, exhibit no signs of decay. They still continue of the same size as before, though vast quantities of earth are frequently washed down from them by rains, which, together with the force of gravity, tending to level and bring them on an equality with the plains on which they stand, we might reasonably think, ought by this time to have rendered them smaller than before. Now, what Theory can assign any proper, natural cause whereby the mountains were originally formed, and through which they preserve their size without any remarkable diminution ?

Further : The internal parts of the earth are still more wonderful than the external. The utmost industry of man, indeed, can penetrate but a little way into it. As far as we can reach, however, it is found to be composed of dissimilar strata, lying obe upon another, not commonly in an horizontal direction,

but inclined to the horizon at different angles. These strata seem not to be disposed either according to the laws of gravity, or acording to their density, but, as it were, by chance. Besides, in the internal parts of the earth are vast chasms and vacuities. By what means were these strata originally deposited, the fissures and chasms, &c. made?

Once more : In many places of the earth, both on the surface, and at great depths under it, vast quantities of marine productions, such as shells, &c. are to be met with. Sometimes these shells are found in the midst of solid rocks of marble and limestone. In the very heart of the hardest stones, also, small vegetable substances, as leaves, &c. are to be found. The question is, by what means were they brought thither?

These are some of the most striking difficulties which present themselves to one who undertakes to write a Natural History, or Theory of the Earth.

In the terraqueous globe are 1. The external part, from which vegetables grow, and animals are nourished. 2. The middle part, which is possessed by fossils, and extends further than human labour can penetrate. 3. The internal, of which we know nothing, the deepest cavities, natural or artificial, known to us, scarce penetrating a mile below the surface.

In the external part we meet with various strata, formed, as is generally supposed, by the deluge. The exterior parts of the earth were then dissolved, and mixed with the water, in one common mass. Afterwards they sunk; but not always according to the laws of gravity, for which very suflicient reasons may be assigned. Every one who has had an opportunity of seeing the effects of a violent land flood, will be ready to own, that it has performed things which he would not before-hand have thought it possible it could have done. But how infinitely must these effects have been exceeded by one vasi deluge, in which not only the dry land was softened, and even dissolved, by an incessant rain of six weeks and that so violent, that Moses describes it by saying "the windows of heaven were opened ;" but all the fountains of the great deep were broken up" from beneath, and the immense collection of waters, then in the bowels of the earth, issued forth, while the sea rose on all sides, and poured in upon it, with all its moveable contents, which the waters carried along with them. That great numbers of shells, already formed, would be brought along with the waters of the ocean cannot be doubted; and we shall be inclined to lock on this number as exceeding great, if we consider that, by the waters issuing from the bottom of the ocean, as well as from every pore of the earth : all the light bodies at the bottom of the sea, must have been turned topsy-turvy, and carried up no one can

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