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Remember the Rainforest 1

 

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When we left the building, we were invited by a mulatto devote, dressed in a red cape, with the insistence of the people of his color, to attend the feast of the Church of Nossa Senhora da Conceicao, nearby.

We accompanied the man through a large crowd of onlookers and climbed the steps to the portal of this temple, which is built by the sea; its façade of European stonework is undoubtedly not all of pure grand style; but among the churches of Bahia, it deserves to be distinguished with particular mention. In the hall of the temple a strange spectacle awaited us: the walls were covered with rows of multicolored English and French copper engravings, with which it was intended to increase devotion, at least to influence the affluent among the curious. Quite unique was to see "Leda and the Swan" there, alongside "Marshal Blucher"; the "Allied Entry into Paris", next to the "Resurrected Christ"; the portraits of a great monarch and his prime minister, in front of the one of "Love and Folia" and of a "Dutch Tavern", a copy of Van Ostade. The public was not surprised by the blasphemy; and after contemplating images, they made their way in tight groups to the interior of the church and to the alms boxes.

Interior Church of Nossa Senhora da Conceicao
  
The Arsenal and the Royal Docks are also in this part of town. The first is widely supplied with all necessary supplies, and can equip and arm several warships in a short time. The gunpowder for the Brazilian squadron, is made in part on the outskirts of Bahia, east of the city, and conserved in the fortifications of Forte do Mar.

Arsenal

Royal docks of Salvador

The Royal Docks are not large, which is why there are rarely more than several boats at the same time; however, both in their careful construction and in their woodwork, the ships made here are distinguished from all the others built in Brazil. The merchant ships are armed especially in the Itapagipe Docks, located at a league and a half northeast of the city. The locality also allows the ships of greater size to launch here. (Note I).

After having traveled through these buildings, the foreigner goes with pleasure to the Upper City, escaping the filth, the trampling, and the heat of the beach. On the steep slopes, partly paved with brick, making horse riding almost impossible, the traveler finds chairs to rent, and two sturdy blacks carry him swiftly to the top, where he is welcomed to an unusual peace and quiet with cool gentle sea breezes.

Salvador old city

Most of the houses in this part of the city are built of stone, having three to five floors, and in general they are pleasant in appearance, but they almost always lack a certain comfort in the interior so there is nothing to be gained by entering them.

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