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The greatest disadvantage to which Recife is subject is the want of fresh water, which is brought by canoes either from Olinda or from the Capibaribe: as no people delight more in good water than the Portugueze, it may be supposed that one of their first public works will be an aqueduct. · The place much resembles one of the provincial cities of Portugal, --unglazed windows, balconies, and lattices,--shops without windows, the houses lofty, and the ground floors occupied as warehouses, or stables, &c. Squares, churches, and convents in abundance. Olinda stands upon much ground, but contains only about 4000 inhabitants : it has never recovered the injury which it sustained during the war. The bishop resides here, and here also is the Seminary or College. The view from hence is magnificent; and justifies the exclamation of the first settlers, from which the city is said to have taken its name, O que linda situaçam para se fundar huina villa! Oh, how beautiful a situation for a town!
Increased wealth and an intercourse with strangers are producing a rapid change of manners. Articles of European manufacture, which were only obtainable at an enormous price, have, since the Emigration, been poured in upon them in such abundance, that English goods have often been sold at less than their prime cost; and the people have readily acquired new wants which are operating beneficially. There was neither inn nor lodging-house when Mr. Koster arrived at Recife; both are now to be found there. Tea, which in 1808 was only sold as a drug at the apothecary's, is now in great and increasing use ;--coffee and tobacco found their way more quickly over the civilized and semi-civilized world; but tea is now becoming more extensively used than either, and where it once prevails it is not likely to be superseded. Certain refinements are wanting which will soon be introduced: two or three knives serve for a large dinner party, the guest cutting the meat upon his plate into small pieces and passing the knise round; it is a compliment to transfer meat from your own plate to that of your
friend: and the presence of ladies at a convivial meeting does not prevent the guests from becoming riotous in their mirth, and breaking bottles and glasses. Here, as in Lisbon, the card-tables are occupied in the morning, and scarcely deserted during the day, except at the dinner hour. The state of religion is curious: the friars, by their profligate conduct, have brought themselves so completely into disrepute, that the mendicant orders, at least, seem in a fair way to be extinguished. None of the convents are full, some of them are nearly without inhabitants. Formerly at least one member of every family was a friar, but now, says Mr. Koster, children are brought up to trade,—to the army,—to any thing rather than to a monastic life. There is little hope that the Romish church will
give up the three great points which render it most injurious to society, --its Infallibility (from which intolerance follows as a necessary consequence)-its Auricular Confession--and the Celibacy of its Clergy. It may, however, easily rid itself of many minor evils and gross
abuses; and of these the mendicant orders are not the least--they are the morbus pediculosus of the Catholic church. But it must not be inferred that there is any abatement of superstition in the Brazilian people, because the cord and the scapulary are out of fashion. Mr. Koster describes the service of Good Friday, which was any thing rather than spiritual.
• The church,' he says, ' was much crowded, and the difficulty of getting in was considerable. An enormous curtain hung from the ceil. ing, excluding from the sight the whole of the principal chapel. An Italian Missionary Friar of the Penha convent, with a long beard, and dressed in a thick dark brown cloth habit, was in the pulpit, and about to commence an extempore sermon. After an exordium of some length, adapted to the day, he cried out. “ Behold him !" the curtain immediately dropped, and discovered an enormous Cross, with a full-sized wooden image of our Saviour, exceedingly well carved and painted, and around it a number of angels represented by several young persons, all finely decked out, and each bearing a large pair of out-stretched wings, made of gauze; a man, dressed in a bob wig, and a pea green robe, as St. John, and a female kneeling at the foot of the Cross, as the Magdalen; whose character, as I was informed, seemingly that nothing might be wanting, was not the most pure. The friar continued, with much vehemence, and much action, his narrative of the crucifixion, and after some minutes, again cried out “ Behold, they take him down!"when four men, habited in imitation of Roman soldiers, stepped forwards. The countenances of these persons were in part concealed by black crape. Two of them ascended ladders placed on each side against the Cross, and one took down the board, bearing the letters I. N. R. I. Then was removed the crown of thorns, and a white cloth was put over, and pressed down upon the head; which was soon taken off, and shewn to the people, stained with the circular mark of the crown in blood; this done, the nails which transfix the hands were by degrees knocked out, and this produced a violent beating of breasts among the female part of the congregation. A long white linen bandage was next passed under each arm-pit of the image ; the nail which secured the feet was removed; the figure was let down very gently, and was carefully wrapped up in a white sheet. All this was done by word of command from the preacher. The sermon was then quickly brought to a conclusion, and we left the church.'—pp. 18, 19.
The traveller also attended the festival of St. Amaro, the healer of wounds', at whose chapel are sold bits of ribbon which many of the lower order tie round their naked ancles or their wrists, and wear until they drop off. This personage is the St. Maurus, who was the friend and disciple of Benedict, and who is in great odour in Portugal, where he enjoys considerable reputation as a mender of broken bones. He has a chapel at Belem, in itself a picturesque building, and finely situated above the river; it is well represented in one of Colmenar's prints : here his annual festival is celebrated as in Brazil, and ribbons with his name in silver letters sold to the credulous crowd. Follies of this kind are not promoted by the Secular clergy, a body, says Mr. Koster, as distinct from the Regulars in their knowledge, manners and utility, as in their way of life. There are no nunneries in the province, but there are Recolhimentos or retreats, in which elderly women, who are bound by no vows, educate girls, and receive such persons of their own sex as are sent to them by their relatives, to amend ibeir morals ;such institutions are probably useful, but liable to obvious abuse. There is a Foundling Hospital at Recife: the infirmaries are in a wretched state; they may be expected to improve, for the Portugueze government is munificent in works of charity, and the science of medicine is cultivated with great ardour in Portugal.
The provincial form of government in Brazil is well contrived if the laws were duly exercised; but as the sovereigns made themselves despotic, and delegated to their governors a like despotic authority, the laws lost all their efficacy, and justice became only a
Mr. Koster speaks in the highest terms of the present governor of Pernambuco, Caetano Pinto de Miranda Montenegro, who, to the great advantage of the captaincy, bas held his office ten years, three being the regular term. Civil and military officers are multiplied without end and without use; the collective expense falls heavy upon the revenue, and yet every office is so wretchedly underpaid, that necessity becomes a ready self-justification for peculation and corruption. These crimes are regarded as things of course, and pass unpunished and even unnoticed. There are men, however, of high integrity, and the governor of Pernambuco is one. Education is not neglected as far as the means of knowledge go. The Seminary, though chiefly intended for divinity students, is not confined to them; the education here is gratuitous; and there are free schools in most of the small towns. . There is no press in Pernambuco,--there was none in Brazil till the Court took shelter there, and sent for one from England! There is no bookseller in Pernambuco.-Such a state of things is more disgraceful to the government than to the people, but it may become us to remember the state of our own islands ;-- ten years ago the only bookseller in Barbadoes was an apothecary, who sold—ruled account books! We may well be proud of our Indian empire,—the only dominion under which those nations have ever enjoyed justice and security; and we may well boast of the stores of oriental literature which our civilians, soldiers and missionaries seem to vie with each other in increasing ; but if we look to the west, it must be with very different feelings. Little as the Brazilians have added to literature, they have done ten times more than the English creoles. * Almanacks, lives of the saints, and books of devotion, (among which it must be remembered the Bible and Testament are not to be found,) are sold at the Benedictine Convent, having been brought from Lisbon. There is a theatre wretchedly conducted, and little amendment can be expected till the Portugueze have something like a drama of their own. The post-office is in the rudest state, it merely receives the bags which are brought by trading vessels, and sends others by the same accidental opportunities; no delivery is made of the letters in Recife, nor are there any means established for conveying them into the country. Some improvement in this most important branch may be looked for as one of the first consequences of an increasing commerce and advancing civilization.Criminal justice is, if possible, even more defective than in Portugal;—a white person cannot even be tried for any capital offence, but must be removed to Bahia. The execution of a man of family in that city, for the murder of his wife and daughter, is recorded by Rocha Pitta, as an extraordinary instance, not of guilt, but of punishment. The only police in Recife is a sort of intermitting volunteer establishment. When any punishment is inflicted, it is usually that of transportation to the island of Fernam de Noronha. There are no women upon this island, none are permitted to go there,-the inhabitants consist of a great number of convicts, and a garrison of about 120 men who are relieved every year. Twice a year it is supplied with clothing, &c. The Chaplain serves for a twelveinonth; those who are liable to be sent on this disgusting duty conceal themselves when the time is come, and the matter is generally settled by pressing the first young priest whom they meet. It is extraordinary that this abominable system should be pursued by a government so moral and so religious as that of Brazil !
After residing nearly a twelvemonth in Recife, Mr. Koster resolved to make a journey into the less populous and less cultivated part of the country; instead therefore of travelling southward towards Bahia, the original capital of Brazil, he set out for Goiana with a Portugueze friend who had a brother residing in that town, and who expected to proceed from thence into the country, on some objects connected with trade. Goiana, which is sixty miles from Recife, is one of the largest and most flourishing towns in the captaincy, and stands upon a river of the same name, four leagues from the sea in a direct line, seven by the course of the stream: the tide ascends above the town, and the planters have the advantage of water-carriage for their produce. The population is between four and five thousand, and the place is increasing in size, wealth,
and importance; the weekly cattle fair, which used to be held at Iguaraçú, having been removed to this neighbourhood, Iguaraçú in consequence is falling into decay, but the communication between Recife and Goiana is so considerable, that the only regular inn in the country is established there for the convenience of travellers. This road is the great way from the intericz or Sertam, as it is called, by which cattle descend from the estates upon the Açu,-and there is no other road than what the cattle have made; they beat down the underwood, but the large trees, if any grow upon the way, remain there: where any rising ground intervenes they make the path straight, the heavy rains take the same course, and soon çut the track into a ravine, so that it is very unsafe to travel such roads by night; a day or two of the usual rain renders them impassable. Here, as in Spain and Portugal, crosses are erected by the wayside wherever a murder has been committed, and they are frequent enough to evince a similar state of popular feeling, and a similar relaxation of law. At Goiana, Mr. Koster visited Dr. Manoel Arruda, author of a Flora Pernambucana, of which a specimen is given in the Appendix to the present volume. The work entities bim to a distinguished rank among botanists : he was very ill at this time, and did not survive long. From thence the traveller accom. panied a Portugueze friend to the city of Paraiba, a distance of thirteen leagues; the measured league is four miles, but there are long leagues, short leagues, and legoas de nada, or leagues that are nothing at all. Nothing indeed can be more vague than ibe computed distances in Portugal, where huma legoa bem boa will sometimes prove a full two hours' journey.
Paraiba contains from two to three thousand inhabitants. It has six churches and three convents. There are public foutains, the only works of the kind which Mr. Koster saw;, and some of the houses have glass windows,—an improvement wbich has only lately been introduced at Recife. The governor resides in what was formerly the Jesuit college, commanding a prospect of the best Brazilian scenery ;---extensive and evergreen woods, bounded by a range of hills, and watered by several branches of the river, with here and there a whitewashed cottage on the higher part of their bank's half concealed by lofty trees. • The cultivated specks are so small as to be scarcely perceptible.' The lower town is situated upon a spacious lake formed by three rivers, which there discharge their waters into the sea by one considerable stream ; the bar admits vessels of 150 tons, and the basin is so sheltered that a rope yarn,' says Mr. Koster, would keep them still.' This whole track is memorable ground in Brazilian history, having repeatedly been fought over in the long and obstinate struggle with the Dutch. The sugar produced here is equal to that of any part