Remember the Rainforest 1
General Charte von Sud-America 1825
at the mouth of the Para River, and thus, to some extent, on the largest river on earth, the Amazon, whose southern mouth should be considered as part of the Amazon’s width. The sea was calmer and we were out of danger. Our pilot continued to steer the ship with marvelous skill, guided by some evidence on the
Coast of Marajo Island
low, uniform, south-eastern coast and the Marajo Island to the west, and with the murky color of the river becoming more noticeable. We sailed at night, with few sails, upstream to the vast bay, existing on the eastern bank of the river, bordering the village of Vigia, where we lay anchor, waiting for the return of the full tide.
Amazon delta and its islands
When the sun of July 25 rose on the clear horizon, it illuminated around us a maze of large and small islands, and, at the bottom of the panel, the edge of the mainland and the Marajo Island border. Marajo boasted tall, green, thriving woods around it, youthful and quiet, as if it had just sprung from the creative waters. Fish in shoals were rapidly evolving in the current, and birds of varying plumage, resting on flowering branches, seemed to be the only inhabitants of that great solitude; columns of blue smoke rising from the bosom of the woods meant the existence of the landlords in their happy retreat. The creative force of the earth had never been so majestic to us as here, where, in exuberant fullness, the world of plants springs up on all sides, fertilized by the rays of the equatorial sun above the fecund waters. This scenario of the planet's creative force was continually renewed in our eyes as we neared the city. As the tide did not favor us much, we anchored again so that we would not be damaged by any of the river's various shoals. Around noon, we came to a view of a small fortress on the bank of the river, Forte da Serra;
Fort da Serra
Caetano Square, Belem
and shortly afterwards the city of Para appeared, with its clean houses, the cathedral and the palace, amidst the dark green of the cocoa trees and the resplendent green border of countless islands.
City of Para, Belem
Coast of Belem today
Right after the landing we went to visit the Governor-General, Count of Vila-Flor, who gave us the most cordial welcome, not only in consideration of the royal letters of recommendation, but also for his own sentiment and scientific contribution; During our long sojourn in his province, he honored us with the most flattering tests of goodwill and trust. At his instigation, that very afternoon, we lodged in the pleasant villa of Mr. Colonel Ambrosio Henriques, a quarter of an hour from the city, and who offered his hospitality.