網頁圖片
PDF

CUBA.

ranges from 28° to 29° Reaumur (95° to 97° Fahrenheit), and in those of December and January, which are the coldest, commonly between 17° and 21° of Reaumur (70° and 79° Fahrenheit) It never freezes, not even on the highest mountains. The coasts of the island are well known to be unhealthy; but this is not the case with the mountains. Among the animals indigenous in the island or the surrounding sea, are the cayman or alligator (q. v.), the manati or sea cow, the iguana (a species of lizard), the turtle, &c. Many of the domestic animals of Europe have been introduced. A great number of swine, and also of bees, are raised. Lately, the breeding of mules has been earned on to a considerable extent. Birds are numerous in the forests. Among them are the canary-bird, the linnet, also a bird resembling the nightingale, the cardinal gross-beak, the bunting, &c. The rivers, though they have but a short course, and are deficient in water, abound, at certain seasons, with excellent fish. Reptiles are extremely numerous. Among the insects, of which there are very many, are the mosquitoes, verdaderamente una plaga que infesta los cayos, costas y terrenos panlano305, to use the words of the Cuadro Estadistico mentioned below. They are divided into different species—mosquito proper, coraci, zanc-udO) rodador^jagiiey and lancctero. In the rainy season, they follow men and beasts into the interior of the island. • The gregen, which is almost invisible, is exceedingly numerous and very troublesome. Among the spiders, the peluda is the most disagreeable in appearance, and its bite produces fever, yet without danger to life. There are other kinds particularly troublesome to particular animals. The vegetable kingdom of Cuba is extremely rich. Here are to be found the mahogany-tree, the cedar, lignum-vita?, various kinds of ebony, besides numerous woods suitable for building houses, ships, <$lc.; also palm-trees, among which the palma real is remarkable for the utility of every part to man and various animals; sarsaparilla and many other plants useful in medicine; also the chestnut, the pine-apple, the annona or custard-apple, the medlar, plantain, orange, and various kinds of melons. Among the agricultural plants, maize is the most important; rice, beans, peas, garbanzos are also cultivated. The culture of wheat is abandoned. The true riches of the country consist in its great articles of export—sugar, colfee, tobacco, wax, c/ieao, molasses, rum, maize,

&c. According to a very recent and complete official publication—Cuadro Estadislico de la sicmpre fiel Ma de Cuba correspondiente al aho de 1827, fonnado par una Comission de Gefes y Oficiales de orden y bajo de la Direction del Excelgmo- SrCapitan General D. Fr. Dionisio F?m\ Habana, 1829—the export of sugar, in 1827, was 5,878,924;! arrobas (an arroba is equal to 25 pounds), or, including tare, &c, 6,300,000 arrobas. The whole, amount produced was 8,091,837 arrobas; consumed on the island, 1,791,837. Of coffee, the export, in the same year, was 2,001,5831 arrobas, and the amount consumed in the island, 881,9443. Of tobacco, the amounts have not been so well ascertained. This article pays a duty of six per cent, to the king (ordinance of Oct. 8, 1827). In 1827, there were exported 61,898 cargas, or about 500,000 arrobas, of which 79,10(1-1 were en rama [in the leaf). Of wax, the export, in 1827, was 22,402% arrobas; the whole production, 63,160. Of cotton, the export, in the same year, was 213,414 arrobas; whole quantity raised, 38,142. Of cacao, the export was only 1953 arrobas, while the whole quantity raised was 23,806 arrobas. Indigo began to be cultivated in 1795, but little has as yet been raised—in 1827, only 56 arrobas—and of wheat only 120 arrobas. The export of molasses, in 1827, was 74,083 bocoyes (hogsheads); of ruin {aguardiente de cana), 2457 pipes. Rice is raised in large quantity, but not enough to supply the great home consumption. In 1827, 520,897 arrobas were produced on the island, and 590,8204 arrobas imported. Of maize, 1,617,806 fancgas were raised (a fanega is about 100 pounds), and yet there were imported 70,497 arrobas of the corn, and 4,952 barrels of the meal. Of beans (frijolles), there were produced, in 1827, 134,185 arrobas, and imported. 58,418.1. Notwithstanding this great production, it is believed that only a seventh part of all the land suitable for cultivation is actually brought into use. The commerce of the country has increased latch very much. The island enjoys great privileges in comparison with other countries under the yoke of Spain. The trade of Cuba is carried on chiefly through llavanna, the capital. There have been times when the exports of the island amounted to $.12,000,000, and its imports were over $15,000,000. In the year 1827, 17,352,854 dollars' worth of merchandise was imported, and 3,561,887 dollars' worth exported, making the consumption

[merged small][ocr errors]

amount to $13,791,267, which, after the subtraction of articles of food imported for the slaves, leaves $12,291,267 for the value of imported articles consumed by the 337,126 white and 106,494 colored free persons, which gives §28 as the average consumption of each individual during the year. The total value of the produce of the island was lately estimated at $44,634,343. In 1827, the commerce of Havanna contributed to the royal revenue $4,383,262, whilst, in 1815, it paid only $1,726,963£. The interior administrations furnished to the revenue, in 1827, $2,272,808. The whole revenue of the island has been estimated at $7,500,000, and the expenses of the government at $6,500,000. According to the Balanza Mercantil of Havanna, for the year 1829, it appears, that the imports in American vessels from the U. States into Havanna, in 1829, amounted to the sum of . . $4,086,230 69 From the U. States in) r-in^n-y -ir* Spanish vessels, \ bl0'/97 12

[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

Of which imports, one \ fourth, at least, was f brought in American | bottoms—say J

From Spain in foreign^ bottoms,$3,097,590 38, of which two thirds, at least, were under the U. States' flag,

Making a total of imports, in 1829, under the American flag, including the imports from the U. States in Spanish vessels, of

The whole value of im- } ports for 1829, into £ Havanna, )

Supplied by the II.} States and by Ameri- > can vessels, }

Leaving, for all other) flags, including the ( Spanish, ^

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

[67,664 tons.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

The tonnage duty paid by

American vessels was, Thus, from the U. States alone (American tonnage) came One fourth of foreign tonnage from other countries, Two thirds of tonnage of foreign vessels from Spain, Total American

tonnage,

From the above notes, it seems that the U. States and her ships have supplied more than 50 per cent, of the entire imports of Havanna for the last year.—The island is subject to the king of Spain, and, for the purposes of government, is divided into two political divisions. That on the west is under the immediate control of the captaingeneral residing in Havanna. The other is under a governor appointed by the king, but subject, in many respects, to the captain-general. It is also divided into two ecclesiastical jurisdictions, the one governed by an archbishop, who resides at St. Jago, the other one by a bishop, wrho resides at Havanna. These jurisdictions have their limits 20 leagues east of the town of F«spiritu Santo. Since the beginning of 1826, the island has been divided, for the purpose of defence, into three military departments; these again into districts, and the districts into sections. The departments are commanded by a general officer. The eastern department embraces the districts of St. Jago, Baracoa, Holguin, Jibara, Jiguani, Cobre, Tiguabos, Manzanillo and Bayamo; the central, those of Puerto Principe, Nuevitas, Trinidad, Espiritu Santo, Villa de Santa Clara and St. Juan de los Remedios; the western, those, of Havanna, St. Antonio de Compostela, St. Felipe, and St. Jago del Bejucal, St. Antonio Abad de los Baiios, Guanajay, Guanabacoa, Filipina, Jarueo, Gnines, Matanzas and Guamutas. These same divisions serve as limits for the jurisdictions of the three intcmleneies which are established for the collection and administration of the public revenue, and the heads of which reside at Havanna, Puerto Principe ami St. Jago, the capital cities of the three departments. Education is in a very low state; but, according to Abbot's Letters on Cuba (Boston, 1829), it is improving. The morals of the people are loose; the

[ocr errors][merged small]

police is weak or inactive: murders are frequent. The laws are very numerous and contradictory, and much bribery and corruption prevail in the administration of justice. In 1821, the importation of slaves was prohibited by law; and, though it is yet carried on, and tolerated by the authorities of Cuba, in spite of the laws against it, there is no doubt that it has diminished a great deal, in consequence of the efforts and vigilance of the English cruisers. The emancipation of Colombia, Mexico, and the Spanish part of St Domingo, has brought to Cuba almost all the Spaniards who were settled in those countries, together with many of the Creoles. The number of the aboriginal population cannot now be ascertained. The European and African population, in 1511, did not include more than 300 persons. Within the last 52 years, the population has more than quadrupled: the colored population has increased faster than the white. According to the census of 1827, given in the Spanish report mentioned above, the population then stood thus:

Males. Females. Total.

Whites, 168,653 142,398 311,051

Free Mulattoes, 28,058 29,456 57,514 Free Negroes, . 23,904 250,76 48,980

Grand total, 704,487 of which 311,051 are white, and 393,436 are colored.

It is generally believed, that the inhabitants are not desirous of separating from the Spanish government, partly because Spain treats them tolerably well, and partly because of the distracted condition in which they behold those parts of Spanish America which have shaken off the Spanish yoke. A conspiracy was discovered, however, in 1830, the object of which was the independence of the island. A ridiculous expedition was sent from Cuba, in 1829, against Mexico, under general Barradas, who was forced to capitulate at Tampico, on September 11 of that year. The principal cities of the island are the capital, Havanna (siempre fidelisima ciudad de S. Cristobal de la Iiabana), with 237,828 inhabitants, St. Jago de Cuba, St. Salvador, St. Carlos de Matanzas, St. Maria de Puerto Principe, &c. (See these articles.)—For further information respecting the island, the reader is referred to Humboldt's Personal Narrative, and the Cuadro Estadistico already mentioned.

Cuba was discovered, in 1492, by Christopher Columbus. In 1511, don

Diego Velasquez sailed from St. Domingo, with four vessels and about 300 men, for the conquest of the island. He landed, on the 25th of July, near the bay of St Jago, to which he gave its name. The natives, commanded by the cacique Hatuey, who had fled from St. Domingo, his native country, on account of the cruelties of the Spaniards, in vain endeavored to oppose the progress of the invaders. The noise of the fire-arms was sufficient to disperse the poor Indians. Hatuey was taken prisoner and condemned to be burned alive, which sentence was executed after he had refused to be baptized. This diabolical act rilled all the other caciques with terror, and they hastened to pay homage to Velasquez, who met with no more opposition. The conquest of Cuba did not cost the Spaniards a single man. The conquerors, not finding the mines sufficiently rich to induce them to work'them, gradually exterminated the natives, whom they could not employ. After the conquest of Cuba, more than two centuries elapsed without the occurrence of any memorable incident. In 1741, the English admiral Vernon sailed, in July, from Jamaica, and entered the bay of Guantanamo, which he named Cumberland. He landed his troops 20 miles up the river, where they remained in perfect inaction until November, when they went back to Jamaica. Notwithstanding the disastrous termination of this expedition, the English government did not relinquish the idea of taking possession of Cuba. In 1762, they sent from England a formidable expedition, which, after its junction with the naval force which had been already serving in the West Indies, consisted of 19 ships of the line, 18 small vessels of war, and 150 transports, which conveyed 12,000 troops. The whole of the fleet appeared off Havanna June 6. 4000 more troops went from North America, in July, to reenforcc them. The Spaniards used every effort to defend the city. The English were several times repelled, but at last the Spaniards surrendered, August 13. The booty obtained by the English was great About three millions of dollars in specie, and a large quantity of goods, fell into their hands, besides a great quantity of munitions of war, 9 ships of the line, and 4 frigates. In 1763, the conquerors, notwithstanding the high opinion that they had of the importance of Cuba, restored it to Spain, in exchange for the Floridas. Since then, Cuba has been a Spanish island, and has been so well fortified, that it is now not in much danger from

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

any attack that can be made upon it The forces of the island consist of 9886 regular troops, and 14,560 militia. The navy contains 2 seventy-fours, 3 frigates of 50 guns, 1 of 40, 1 sloop of war, and 2 brigs of 22 guns each, 1 brig of 20, one of 16, and 6 schooners mounting 13 guns.

Cubature Of A Solid, in geometry; the measuring of the space contained in it, or finding the solid content of it.

Cube, ingeometry; a solid body, consisting of six equal square sides. The solidity of any cube is found by multiplying the superficial area of one of the sides by the height. Cubes are to one another in the triplicate ratio of their diagonals; and a cube is supposed to be generated by the motion of a square plane along a line equal to one of its sides, and at right angles thereto; whence it follows, that the planes of all sections, parallel to the base, are squares equal thereto, and, consequently, to one another.

Cube, or Cubic Number,in arithmetic; that which is produced by the multiplication of a square number by its root; thus 64 is a cube number, and arises by multiplying 16, the square of 4, by the root, 4.

Cube, or Cubic Quantity, in algebra; the third power in a series of geometrical proportionals continued; as, a is the root, a a the square, and a a a the cube.

Cube Root of any number or quantity is a number or quantity, which, if multiplied into itself, and then again by the product thence arising, gives a product equal to the number or quantity whereof it is the cube root; as, 2 is the cube root of 8, because twice 2 are 4, and twice 4 are 8.

Cubic Foot of any substance; so much of it as is contained in a cube whose side is one foot (See Cube.)

Cubit, in the mensuration of the ancients ; a long measure, equal to the length of a man's arm, from the elbow to the tip of the ringers. Doctor Arbuthnot makes the English cubit equal to 18 inches, the Roman cubit equal to 1 foot, 5.406 inches, and the cubit of scripture equal to 1 foot, 9.888 inches.

Cuckingstool; an ancient instrument of punishment, described, in Doomsday Book, as cathedra slercoris. Scolds, cheating bakers or brewers, and other petty offenders, were led to this stool, and immerged over head and ears in stercore, or stinking water.

Cuckoo (cumins, Lin.); a genus of birds, characterized by a bill of moderate size, short tarsi, and tail composed of 10 leathers. The bill is compressed, and

slightly arched. The greater number of species belonging to this genus are found on the ancient continent Only one species is a native of Great Britain, and very few belong to Europe. In America, no true cuckoos are found, for the genus coccyzus differs very essentially from them in its habits. The cuckoos are especially distinguished by their habit of laying their eggs in the nests of other, and, generally, much smaller birds. What is still more singular, it has been found, by very careful observations, that the young cuckoo, shortly after being hatched, throws out of the nest all the other young or eggs, and thus engrosses to itself the whole parental care of the bird in whose nest it has been lodged. The manner in which this ejectment is effected is thus described by Jenner, in the second part of the Philosophical Transactions for 1788, article 14:— "The little animal, with the assistance of its rump and wings, contrived to get the bird on its back, and, making a lodgment for the burden by elevating its elbows, clambered backwards with it up the side of the nest, till it reached the top, where, resting for a moment, it threw off its load with a jerk, and quite disengaged it from the nest It remained in this situation a short time, feeling about with the extremity of its wings, as if to be convinced whether the business was properly executed, and then dropped into the nest again. With these (the extremities of its wings) I have often seen it examine, as it were, an egg or nestling before it began its operations; and the nice sensibility which these parts appeared to possess seemed sufficient to compensate the want of sight, which, as yet, it was destitute of. I afterwards put in an egg, and this, by a similar process, was conveyed to the edge of the nest, and thrown out These experiments I have since repeated several times in different nests, and have always found the young cuckoo disposed to act in the same manner. In climbing up the nest, it sometimes drops its burden, and thus is foiled in its endeavors; but, after a little respite, the work is resumed, and goes on almost incessantly till it is effected. It Is wonderful to see the extraordinary exertion of the young cuckoo, when it is only two or three days old, if a bird be put in the nest with it, that is too weighty for it to lift out. In this state, it seems ever restless and uneasy. But this disposition for turning out its companions begins to decline from the time it is two or three till it is twelve days old ; when, as far as I have seen, it ceases. Indeed, the disposi

[ocr errors][merged small]

tion for throwing out the egg appears to cease a few days sooner; for I have frequently seen the young cuckoo, after it has been hatched 9 or 10 days, remove a nestling that had been placed in the nest with it, when it suffered an egg, put there at the same time, to remain unmolested. The singularity of its shape is well adapted to these purposes; for, different from other newly-hatched birds, its back, from the scapulae downwards, is very broad, with a considerable depression in the middle. This depression seems formed by nature for the purpose of giving a more secure lodgment to the egg of the hedge-sparrow or its young one, when the young cuckoo is employed in removing either of them from the nest. When it is about 12 days old, this cavity is quite filled up, and then the back assumes the shape of nestling birds in general. A young cuckoo, that had been hatched by a hedgesparrow about four hours, was confined in the nest in such a manner, that it could not possibly turn out the young hedgesparrows, which were hatched at the same time, though it was almost incessantly making attempts to effect it. The consequence was, the old birds fed the whole alike, and appeared, in every respect, to pay the same attention to the young cuckoo as to their own young, until the 13th day, when the nest was unfortunately plundered. The smallness of the cuckoo's egg, in proportion to the size of the bird, is a circumstance that hitherto, I believe, has escaped the notice of the oniidiologist. So great is the disproportion, that it is, in general, smaller than that of the house-sparrow; whereas, the difference in the size of the birds is nearly as five to one. I have used the term in general, because eggs produced at different times by the same bird, vaiy very much in size. I have found a cuckoo's egg so light, that it weighed only 43 grains, and one so heavy, that it weighed 55 grains. The color of the cuckoo's eggs is extremely variable. Some, both in ground and penciling, very much resemble the house-sparrow's; some are indistinctly covered with bran-colored spots; and others are marked with lines of black, resembling, in some measure, the eggs of the yellow-hammer." The cause of this singular habit of the common cuckoo of Europe (cuculus canorus) has been long a subject of discussion, without having been very satisfactorily determined. The opinion of the observer above cited appears to be as near the truth as we may hope to arrive. He attributes it to the short stay made by the bird in the coun

try where it is under the necessity of propagating its species. Were it not to resort to some such expedient, it would be impossible that the species could be continued. The cuckoo first appears in England about the 17th of April. Its egg is not ready for incubation sooner than the middle of May. A fortnight is taken up by the sitting bird in hatching the egg. The bird generally continues three weeks in the nest before it flies. The foster parents feed it for more than five weeks after this period; so that, if the cuckoo took care of its own eggs and young, the newly-hatched bird would not be fit to provide for itself before its parent would be instinctively directed to seek a new residence, and be thus compelled to abandon its young one; for the old cuckoos take their final leave before the first week in July. The young cuckoos forsake the nest as soon as fully fledged, and capable of providing for themselves. Their migrations from Europe are thought to be chiefly directed towards Africa; thence they regularly return with the spring, and, from some dead tree or bare bough, the male pours forth his monotonous son£, cuckoo! cuckoo !—In America, there is a bird of a veiy different genus, which resembles the cuckoo in depositing its egg in the nests of other birds, to be fostered by them. This will be described under the title Emberiga. (q. v.)

Cucumber. The genus cucumis, to which the common cucumber belongs, contains 17 species, several of which are of considerable importance. Ciicumis colocynthis, producing the medicine called coloquintida, is a native of Africa. Cucumis mxguria, the round, prickly cucumber, is a native of the West Indies, where it is used, with other vegetables, in soups. Cucumis melo, the common melon, is supposed to be a native of Persia: it was cultivated in Europe in the 16th century. Cucumis sativus, the common cucumber, is a native of the East Indies. The varieties of this, as t well as of the melon, are easily produced. Those with the smoothest rind and fewest seeds are most esteemed. Cucumis anguinus, the snake cucumber, bears fruit sometimes from three to four feet long. It is only raised as a curiosity, the flavor being bitter. Several other species produce fruits that are eaten by the inhabitants of the countries of which they are natives. The cucumber was one of the luxuries of which Tiberius was particularly fond; and, by the dexterous management of his beds, he procured one every day, at all seasons of the year.—The common cucumber (cu

« 上一頁繼續 »