#27 Forest on Monte Corcovado near the head of the aqueduct of the Carioca spring, city of Rio de Janeiro
Latin translation by Ben Hennelly
In etching #26 we presented to the kind reader a view of the outlines of all of Mt. Corcovado; in this one, also copied from a picture by Thomas Ender, we are sent down into a valley of this most beautiful mountain. The position of the artist should be estimated at about a third of the way up the mountain, not far removed from the place where the aqueduct of the Carioca spring, a square-sided granite structure that bestows the waters' sweetness upon the city of Rio de Janeiro, comes forth from the deep shadow of the forests to descend along the mountain-side with slow step, as it were, down into the plain. You are situated in a spot already
On the wall of the aqueduct, Carioca spring, above Rio de Janeiro
high enough for you to see part of both the bay named after the city of Rio de Janeiro, and of the opposite shore. The areas that lie closest remain for the most part untouched by the axe's violence, and gleam with the fullness characteristic of the vegetation that shades the lower zone of the mountain.
Here to the left you will see tall trees, Ficus doliaria Martius (1) and Couratari rufescens St. Hillary, connected by numerous vines; more to the right, a Spondia bearing edible fuit, which I designate with the name Spondia venulosa (2); and in just about the middle of the etching, a pleasant Huberia ovalifolia, a tree adorned with innumerable white panicles when in flower. To the front, you have a multitude of the most magnificent plants, which in our greenhouses we never see cloaked in such a wealth of foliage and flowers as they grow with in their native land; tall clumps of Cyperaceae and ferns, various Bromeliaceae and Anonaceae and Aroideae with simple or digitate leaves, which in some places shoot up from the moist, lively soil, and in others encircle fallen, rotting trunks with new life. To the right, near the edge of the etching, the lovely form of a certain Theophrasta L. or Clavija Ruiz, which from afar seems to imitate the shape of a small, branching palm.
As well as other remarkable plants, I collected in these regions a beautiful tree of Mimusops subsericea Mart. (Synarrhena Fisch.), Schmidelia levis St. Hil. (the Fruta de parao of the inhabitants), Machaerium brasiliense Vog., Myrodia penduliflora St. Hil., Picramnia ciliata Mart., Combretum variabile (3), Lagetta Funifera, etc. When you have climbed higher, an path cut with an axe will lead you through a low-growing grove that no longer excels with that great fullness, but contains smaller trees with many branches. It is what is called Capoeira, a forest of the second order, which arises where primeval forest has been destroyed; we have already treated this matter in etchings #6 and 16.
Etching commentary #27