next arrow
previous

Remember the Rainforest 1

 

Home

Expedition Index

Itinerary

Etchings

Maps

Plants

Animals

People / Scenes

Lessons

Green Girl's Eco Club

Eco SuperHeroes RTR2

Free Posters

Authors / Artists

Contact us

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We collected some of these skulls, as did His Highness the Prince von Wied who reproduced a copy, belonging to Mr. Blumenbach.

It is said that the Mundurucus, in order to acquire their great muscular strength, abstain from eating the cassava, which I have seen used by all the other Indians. They also do not practice the vice of parica, peculiar to their neighbors the Muras

and Mauhes,

or the singular custom of the Mauhes: the strict fast of the girls, when they reach puberty, and their exposure to smoke, suspended from the ceiling.

Much of what I observed here for five days, or what I learned from the well-informed priest, made me guess that the Mundurucus belong to a large bunch of Tupi, but, in order not to interrupt the thread of the narration, I will leave to the notes anything else in this regard. (Note II).

The rock formations on the outskirts of Canoma were no different from the ones I had noticed along the Amazon and Solimoes. Greyish, fine-grained, sometimes very hard and crystalline gypsum,

Crystalline gypsum

similar to that of Cupati, forms the foundation for widely scattered brown ferruginous stoneware,

which, in coarse or finer layers, alternately contains a lot of brown jasper

encased. There is much talk here of gold abundant in a land which the Jesuits knew through the Indians; and particularly the headwaters of Canoma and its next tributaries are considered as bearers of gold, an opinion that is accepted.

At present, however, the true opulence of this territory consists exclusively in the fertility and profusion of its noble plants, such as Maranho's carnation

Maranho's carnation for fevers

and sarsaparilla.

Both are abundant in the steep slopes between Canoma and Madeira, and in groves, which, in thickness, variety and quantity of palm trees, resembles the groves of the Amazon, but lower.

The banks of the Canoma, stretched like a lake, are covered with pure white sand, and its numerous woods of mirtaceas, guava trees and remote mountain peaks have the most pleasing aspect.

Dr. Spix

It was only on the night of March 24 that my companion arrived in Canoma, coming in the big canoe. He had to fight continuously against the current, and he was in such a frightening state of health, that we resolved to hasten the journey up the river as far as possible. We set out from Canoma early in the morning, and I went on, in my own boat again, to the mission of the Mauhes, which we reached that night.

Etching 18

Although there was little variation, between the shores then covered with dense forest, yet the voyage afforded me a rare pleasure, the sight of the beautiful and happy state of the Indian colonies scattered in the Iraria, particularly the village of the Mauhes.

The founder and former director of this populous village, Capitan Jose Rodrigues Preto, an

293