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the breaking spar of palm trees attracts, with the violent scent of flowers, swarms of bees; Also the Bignonias, Jacarandas, the small Centaureas of the fields,

Bignonia capreolata

Jacaranda tree


the Curatela sambaiba, Saint-Hil., and the thickets of Myrtaceas on the plateaus.

Curetela americana

Myrtus bicolor

On the contrary, the Malpighias and Banisterias, the Tingui (Phaeocarpus campestris, Mart., ”Nov. gen.", Tab. 37), the soap tree, the Paulinia and Securidacas, transmit harmful properties to the honey, and do little good.

Malphigia angustifolia

Phaeocarpus campestris

Seciridaca ovalifolia

The best species of bees is the so-called jatai sertanejos, the most diligent one, however (Note II). the intensity of their poison is sometimes higher in the backlands than in the plateau of Minas.

Brazilian bee

Cases of lacrau sting (Scorpio america nus, L.) are not rare, so we take it as an

Scorpio americanus

inviolable habit to carefully examine washed clothes and boots, before we put them on, and when we slept in beds we made sure to knock all over the place to get rid of the dangerous guests. It often happened when we opened a box, a centipede a foot long met us.

Nature, which has surrounded man here with innumerable enemies, seems to want to indemnify him, lavishing him with the necessities of a simple life, and everywhere granting him the blessing of numerous offspring. The fertility of women was remarkable, and the population growth in this district is a phenomenon. According to our illustrious host's statement, there were only three women in the region around Contendas forty years earlier, and nowadays the stretch of territory between Rio Verde Grande and Rio Sao Francisco,

Valley of the Rio Sao Francisco

which was elevated to the parish of Our Lady of the Conception of Morrinhos in the year 1795, counts almost 10,000 souls, of which some 4,000 parishioners come from time to time the Igreja de Contendas; the others, however, are parishioners far away. A 50-year-old woman living in Contendas boasts 204 living descendants; another, already seventy years old who married an old man, gave him three twin children, who still live. It is not uncommon there for a girl of only 20 years old, to already be a mother of eight or 10 children. There is almost no news of unhappy childbirth. In fact, women lose their freshness early, and the fine features of the physiognomy soon change with the tendency to fat, increased by the abundant hot showers, but only later lose the vitality and organic activities common to their sex. Among men there are old men of gigantic height who retain all the predicates of virility. Mortality is so small that only three to four people die each year, while 60 to 70 are born. As the father teaches his children