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THE INTERNATIONAL CYCLOPEDIA.
DRAZIL, the largest state of South America and equal in size to the United States, exB clusive of Alaska, occupies the northeastern angle of the continent, extending from
lat. 4° 30' n. to lat. 33° S., and from long. 35° to long. 73° w. Its length is estimated at 2660 miles and its extreme breadth at 2705 miles. Towards the interior it borders on all the other states of South America except Chili. Its coast line is nearly 4000 miles in extent, and its total area, according to official accounts, 3,288,000 square miles ; according to other and more trustworthy computations, 3,219,110 square miles.
History.-In 1500, January 26, Vicente Yañez Pinçon, a companion of Columbus, landed at Cape Augustine, near Pernambuco, and from thence sailed northward along the coast, as far as the Orinoco. In the same year another Portuguese commander, Pedro Alvarez Cabral, driven by adverse winds to the Brazilian coast, landed at Porto Seguro, and taking possession in the name of his monarch, named the country Terra da Vera Cruz. In 1501 and 1503 expeditions were sent thither under Amerigo Vespucci, who on the second voyage reached Brazil and built a fort, remaining there about five months, and then returned with a cargo of Brazil-wood, which gave the vast region its name. The Spaniards of Buenos Ayres founded Montevideo to control the Plata, but in 1509 Portugal, then at war with France, wrested from the latter more territory on the Amazon than she was to lose on the Plata. In 1531 the first permanent settlement was made by the Portuguese, on the island of S. Vincente, lat, 24° 30's. The hostility of the natives and the lack of means led to the abandonment of many settlements subsequently made, and a Huguenot colony, established on the bay of Rio de Janeiro in 1555, was broken up by the Portuguese in 1567, who then founded Rio, the present capital. In 1578 Brazil, as a dependency of Portugal, became a Spanish possession, but in 1630 the Dutch captured Pernambuco and held it, with other places, for twenty years. In 1654 Portugal regained Brazil, and in 1679 founded Colonia, opposite Buenos Ayres, in order to hold the eastern shore of the La Plata. This gave rise to a dispute with Spain, lasting until 1827, when the independence of Banda Oriental, as the territory was called, was recognized by Brazil. The discovery of gold toward the end of the 17th century, and of diamonds, in 1710, resulted in the rise of a number of mining towns, and in the removal of the capital from Bahia to Rio de Janeiro, but the arbitrary and exclusive colonial system under which Brazil had been settled, together with the lack of order, education, and internal communication kept the country in a backward state. In 1807, under the pressure of French invasion, the royal family of Portugal fled to Brazil, which remained the virtual seat of government until 1821, when Dom João VI. returned, leaving his eldest son, Dom Pedro, as Prince Regent. During this period, the ports of Brazil were opened to commerce, foreign artisans were welcomed, various restrictions on domestic industries were removed, and schools, public institutions, and new courts were established, but the popular desire for free government increased ; the Prince Regent, himself ambitious, willingly encouraged the movement, and directing the revolution that ensued, proclaimed the independence of Brazil, September 7, 1822, and on October 12 was crowned Emperor, as Dom Pedro I. Early in 1825 the constitution was ratified and sworn to, and in 1835 it received some amendments. The arbitrary measures of Dom Pedro made him unpopular, and in 1831 he abdicated in favor of the Leir-apparent, then a child, and returned to Portugal. Under the regencies which followed Brazil was vexed by disorders and political intrigues, and the reaction against republicanism ended in 1840 in the declaration of the young Prince's majority, and in his coronation in 1841, at the age of fifteen, as Dom Pedro II. (q.v.). The only wars which occurred during his reign-omitting a few insignificant revolutionary outbreaks were in 1852 and 1865–70, the first having for its object the overthrow of the Rosas dictatorship in Buenos Ayres, and the second being the contest waged against Paraguay by Brazil aided by Uruguay and the Argentine Republic. The centralizing system of the empire and the maladministration of the provinces gradually excited a widespread feeling of discontent, especially in the army, and the attempt in 1889 to form a Garde Nationale to be entirely under imperial control, hastened the crisis. On November 15 intelligence that Rio was in the hands of insurgents reached the Emperor at his country seat, and on hastening to the capitol he found that the ministry had been deposed. Later in the day a provisional yovernment, headed by General da Fonseca (q.v.), was organized, which issued a manifesto proclaiming a republic. All these changes met with little opposition ; indeed, it had been long and widely believed that the empire would not outlive the Emperor. Dom Pedro attempted to form a new ministry, but was prevented, and a new decree ordered him to leave the country with his family within twenty-four hours. The same decree continued the imperial dowry and granted the Emperor a subsidy of $2,500,000, both of which he refused. On the following day, November 16, the Emperor and his family embarked for Portugal, and the proclamation, November 21, of universal suffrage to all Brazilians who could read and write, was followed by the appointment of a commission to draft a federal constitution. September 15, 1890, was fixed as the date for electing delegates to the constitutional assembly, and November 15 as the date for the first session of said assembly. On January 10, 1890, the separation of church and state was decreed by the provisional government. The new constitution (subject to further revision) was promulgated, June 23.
Topography.-Extending as it does over about 30° of latitude, Brazil comprises every variety of surface, and although much of it is still unexplored, the country as a whole is known to be less mountainous than was formerly supposed, and to consist in great part of elevated plateaus from 1000 to 3000 feet in height, crossed here and there by ridges and intersected by broad valleys. The principal mountain chains, the Serra da Mantequeira and Serra do Espinhaço, contain the sources of the São Francisco and Paraná rivers and the first-named range has one peak, called Pico do Itatiaiossú, over 8000 feet high. A nearly parallel range on the west forms the mountains of Goyaz, the highest portion of which, the Montes Pyreneos, has peaks 9000 feet high. A series of high plateaus, the Serra das Vertentes (range of the water-shed) extends westward from the Goyaz mountains nearly or quite to the Madeira river, dividing the tributaries of the Amazon from those of the Paraguay and Paraná. Of the eastern ranges, the most important is the Serra do Mar, extending from the province of Rio de Janeiro nearly to the 30th parallel, and there dividing into two branches, one of which passes westward into the Argentine Republic. The highest portion of the Serra do Mar is that known as the Organ mountains, north of the bay of Rio, whose singular peaks rise to a height of 7500 feet. The valley of the Amazon is described as a lowland plain, and the banks of that river as nowhere more than 250 feet above sea level. The greater part of the coast is sandy and low.
The Amazon (see article on that river), with its tributaries, drains fully one-half of the country, varies in width from half a mile to a mile where it enters Brazil, and is about 150 miles wide at its mouth. Its largest branch, east of the Madeira, is the Tocantins, formed by the junction of the Almas and Maranhão, which, flowing north for 900 miles, unites with the Araguaya to form the Pará branch of the Amazon. The Araguaya divides in its course into two branches, which, after flowing 220 miles reunite, forming in this manner an island called the Ilha Bananal. The Araguaya is navigable, but the other rivers east of the Madeira descend rapidly from their table-lands and few can be navigated by vessels for long distances. The streams west of the Madeira have a sluggish current and can be freely navigated for long distances. Of the northern tributaries of the Amazon the longest (1000 miles) is the Rio Negro. This is connected with the Orinoco by a natural canal called the Casiquiare. The eastern coast rivers are mostly small, but the São Francisco, a powerful stream, is 1800 miles in length, and is freely navigable by vessels for 150 miles from the Atlantic, where passage is obstructed by the Paulo Affonso falls. Its tributaries are unimportant, but one of them rises in the same lake with a branch of the Tocantins, thus making northeastern Brazil practically an island. The three branches of the La Plata system,-the Paraguay, Paraná, and Uruguay, drain, it is estimated, nearly one-fifth of the country. Large steamers ascend the Paraguay for about 1000 miles above Buenos Ayres, and lighter vessels 300 miles further. The eastern provinces have many lakes, and numerous islands lie along the coast, the most important being Fernando Noronha, a penal settlement.
The rock formation of the coast, from the province of Maranhão southward and the southeastern and southern mountains are of gneiss, which appears also along the rivers flowing northward to the Amazon and even north of the Amazon itself. Metamorphosed clay slates occur in Minas-Geraes and Matto-Grosso. The carboniferous strata are chiefly found along the coast south of Rio. Cretaceous rocks have been traced from the coast at about 18° 8. northwestward as far as the Purus river, and are believed to underlie the tertiary deposits of the Amazon valley. In the province of Sergipe the cretaceous rocks are underlaid by triassic red sandstone. Tertiary clays and ferruginous sandstones overlie the cretaceous rocks of the coast plains unconformably. Drift, ascribed to the agency of glacier ice, covers the Amazon valley and southeastern and southern Brazil. True coral reefs are found along the northeastern coast. Hot wells and springs of saline or alkaline character abound. There are remarkable limestone caverns on the São Francisco river, where have been found remains of the mastodon, mylodon, megatherium, and other extinct animals mingled with human remains.
Mineralogy.-Brazil is very rich in minerals and precious stones. There are coal basins of large extent ; the provinces of Goyaz, Matto-Grosso, and Rio Grande do Sul have rich copper mines ; lead, iron, manganese, mercury, sulphur, and salt petre abound. Salt is extensively produced in saline marshes by the alternate processes of inundation and evaporation. Gold, always accompanied with silver, is found in many of the provinces, but is especially abundant in Minas-Geraes. Diamonds are obtained in MinasGeraes, Paraná, and Bahia, and the ruby, emerald, sapphire, topaz, tourmaline, amethyst, opal, and other stones are more or less common. There are valuable phosphate deposits on some of the islands, and petroleum is obtained in one or two of the provinces.
Fauna and Flora.—The most formidable and common beast of prey is the onça or jaguar. Besides, there are found the puma or cougar, ocelot, tiger-cat, red wolf, Brazilian dog or wild fox, wild hog, tapir, capybara or water hog, paca, three species of deer, numerous sloths, ant-eaters, armadillos. opossums. coatis, water-rats, otters, and porcupines. Rabbits, hares, and squirrels abound, and there are many species of monkeys and several kinds of bats, including the vampire. Large herds of wild horses and of half-wild oxen are seen on the southern plains. One derives some idea of the immense number of birds from Wallace's statement that he found 500 species in the Amazon valley alone, and reckoned thirty distinct species of parrots and twenty varieties of humming-birds. The largest birds are the ouira, a large eagle, the rhea or American ostrich, and the variama (q.v.). Toucans, snowy herons, ducks, frigate birds, wild peacocks, turkeys, geese, and pigeons, are met with along the coasts or in the forests. The uraponga or bell-bird (q.v.) oriole and whippoorwill are among the smaller birds. The most venomous of the many serpents are the jararaca and the rattlesnake. The jiboia or boa-constrictor and anaconda attain great length, and at least three species of cobra are noted as dangerous. Alligators, turtles, and lizards are numerous, and along the Amazon is seen the singular juruá or cowfish, an herbivorous cetacean. The rivers, lakes, and coast-waters literally swarm with fish. In the Amazon and its tributaries Agassiz found nearly 2000 species. The pira rucú, one of the largest taken in the Amazon, is a staple article of food. The piranha, a voracious fish, inhabits the São Francisco ; the garou pa, a sea-fish, is of excellent flavor ; the vermelho and curvina are not unlike the red-snapper of more northern waters ; the dourado, a river fish, resembles the shad, and the mero, badejo, roballo, and others are highly esteemed for food. The insects include beautiful butterflies, large beetles, scorpions and spiders, bees of many kinds, musical crickets, destructive ants, the cochineal insect, sandflies and mosquitoes, and the pium, a minute fly whose bite is poisonous and sometimes dangerous.
Vegetation is of the inost luxuriant description, and the forests of the Amazon valley are believed to be the most extensive in the world, producing fully 400 species of trees. The botanical families most numerously represented are the Compositæ, Leguminose, Rubiaceae, Aroider, and Filices. In marshy places and along streams, reeds, grasses, and water plants grow in tangled masses, and in the forests trees crowd each other in the struggle for life, and are draped with parasitic vines or bound together by a network of lianas (q.v.). Along the coast mangroves, mangoes, cocoas, dwarf palms, and the Brazil-wood (q.v.) are noticeable. The southern province of Santa Catharina produces more than 40 different kinds of trees valuable for timber. Mallows and mimosas abound along the São Francisco, and among the innumerable trees of the Amazon and its affluents are the itauba or stonewood, so named from its durability, the cassia, the cinnamon-tree, the lime, the banana, the myrtle, the guava, the bertholletia, which yields “ Brazil nuts" (q.v.), the jacaranda or rosewood (q.v.), the pao d'arco or bowwood, the Brazilian bread-fruit, whose large seeds are used for food, the euphorbia, the copaiba, the myrtle, the macaranduba, with a bark rich in tannin and yielding a milky sap resembling india rubber, when coagulated, the large and lofty cotton-tree, the tall, white-trunked seringa or rubber-tree, which furnishes the gum of commerce, and the numerous palms (300-400 species), chief among them the carnauba palm, every part of which is useful, from the wax of its leaves to its edible pith, and the piassaba palm, the bark of which is clothed with a loose fiber used for coarse textile fabrics and for brooms. Orchidaceous plants, including several species of vanilla and showy epidendrums, rhexias, bignonias, etc., adorn the forests, while the southern campos or prairies are covered with coarse grasses and scattered clumps of small trees or cacti. The eucalyptus and other Australian trees and shrubs have been successfully introduced. There are several kinds of nutritious native grasses which furnish grazing throughout the year. Among indigenous fruits are the pine-apple, fig, custard-apple, mango, banana, guava, and grape (v. sycoides), and orange. European grapes, olives, and watermelons of fine flavor are cultivated.
Climate.—This is as varied as the surface of the vast country, but is in general healthful. The Amazon valley and the coast from about lat. 20° northwards are subject to great heat, and have a winter season lasting from the end of November until the middle of May, and characterized by violent rains with thunder and lightning. At Pará, on the coast, the thermometer ranges from 98° F. to 68o. Along the Amazon showers frequently occur during the “dry season.” In the inland, central provinces rainy periods occur from late October to March or April. The southeastern coast, between parallels 150 and 25°, and the valley of the São Francisco are subject to rains between October and May. In the province of São Paulo the principal rains fall between November and April. Farther south the seasons are less abruptly divided. The mean
annual temperature at the falls of the Madeira is estimated at 77', while in the vicinity of Rio de Janeiro the thermometer ranges from 75° in January to 65° in July. The extremes are still lower in Paraná and Rio Grande do Sul. The northern coast is visited by easterly trade-winds during much of the year, the central coast by northeasterly or southeasterly winds, and the interior by southerly or northerly winds. In the moun: tains and on the uplands of the central and southern provinces frosts not infrequently occur in the “ winter months' of June and July, and snow often falls during this period even in Paraná and Rio Grande do Sul. Brazil is exempt from the disasters produced by volcanoes and earthquakes, to which the Pacific coast is subject. Intermittent fevers prevail in the mountain valleys and marshy districts, and there are occasional epidemics of cholera and yellow fever, due largely to lack of sanitary precautions.
Agriculture.-It has been estimated that not more than one acre in 200 is cultivated. This is in great measure due to the unfertile character of the country as a whole, large tracts being wholly unproductive or subject to long-continued droughts. Again, the agricultural population is small, as a rule, and the farms and plantations are tilled in a very slow and primitive manner, and in many parts the gathering of forest products is preferred. The profitable crops, coffee and sugar, naturally have the largest areas devoted to them ; tobacco and cotton coming next. The coffee-plant is most extensively grown in the provinces of Rio de Janeiro, Minas-Geraes, and São Paulo, but can be grown in nearly every part of Brazil. Nearly all the coffee used in the United States comes froin Brazil, over 300,000,000 pounds being annually imported. The Atlantic provinces yield the sugar supply, especially Bahia and Pernambuco. Cotton of excel. lent quality is produced in every province, but Pernambuco and Maranhão are said to be best fitted for it. The average yield is two and one-half bales per acre. Tobacco, raised chiefly in Bahia, São Paulo, Pará, and Minas-Geraes, is inferior to that of the West Indies. The greater part of the tobacco exported is grown in Bahia. Maize is one of the leading products of Minas-Geraes and São Paulo, but not enough is raised for home consumption, and the same is true of rice. The small grains do not flourish. Among the more common food products are sweet potatoes, yams, beans, and the farina prepared from the root of the manioc (q.v.) or cassava. Cocoa is grown in northeastern Brazil, and the holly or ilex, which yields the maté (q.v.) or Paraguay tea, is cultivated to some extent in the extreme southern provinces, where it is indigenous. Pumpkins, squashes, cabbages, okra, tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, and other vegetables are raised.
Industries.—Manufactures, long occupying a subordinate place as compared with agriculture, mining, and the collecting of forest products, are becoming more important. In the provinces of Bahia and Pernambuco and elsewhere the refining of sugar is extensively carried on by the diffusion process, or in remote districts by somewhat primitive methods. Several kinds of rum are distilled in the sugar districts, and cigar-making is an important industry. In 1887 sixty-two cotton spinneries and weaving factories were reported. The smelting of metals, the manufacture of steam-engines and agricultural tools, the tanning of leather and working of hides, and the manufacture of salt, straw hats, soap and candles employs many hands, and within recent years the list of artificial products has been lengthened by the addition of paper, calicoes, powder and dynamite, glass, wines, beer, cotton-seed oil, castor oil, wax matches, and sulphuric acid. The raising of cattle and the breeding of horses give occupation to many in the southern province of Rio Grande do Sul. Although Brazil has so many kinds of durable woods, timber for making railroad cars is imported from India, and large quantities of salt fish are brought from the United States when Brazil might easily supply her needs by improving her own fisheries. The scarcity of coal and labor, and the unfavorable character of the mining laws operate against the production of precious metals. Shipbuilding is carried on at several ports.
Commerce.—Coffee furnishes about two-thirds of the total exports, from six to seren million bags being shipped annually, followed in importance by sugar and rubber. The principal exports to the United Siates, besides the articles just mentioned, are cocoa, horse-hair, wool, and hides. Other exports are cotton, tobacco, nuts, maté or Paraguay tea, dye and cabinet woods, gold-dust, diamonds, drugs and medicinal plants, tallow, horns, etc. From the United States are imported flour, cotton goods, iron ond steel manufactures, petroleum, lard, soap, lumber, wooden ware, boots and shoes, etc. From Europe are obtained wines and iron, and from England the chief supply of cotton goods. The chief centers of foreign trade, and, together with São Paulo, in the interior, the principal cities, are Pará or Belem, Maranhão, Bahia, Pernambuco, and Rio de Janeiro, or Rio, the capital and the favorite halting-place of the outward-bound vessels for India, China, and Australia. In 1867 the Amazon was opened to all nations. Twenty-three steamship lines are subsidized by the government, including two from Santos to Hamburg and Genoa. Of six lines between Brazil and the United States four are British and one is German. The annual exports average $96,000,000, and the imports $80,000,000. The exports to the United States in 1888 amounted to $55,259,228; the imports from that country to $8,160,523. Export duties are levied on domestic products and heavy import duties on foreign goods. In 1895 custom house duties on exports will be abolished. The sugar exported from Pernambuco in 1889 amounted to 117,185 tons, and the india-rubber shipped from Pará, in 1888, to 15,032 tons. In 1887, 748,937 bbls. of flour were imported from the United States. About 30,000 ships annually enter