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ANDES. form, it passes through the provinces of Chaco, Chiqui- ing from 0°, 13'to the 3d degree of S. latitude, or more ANDES.
tos, and Moxos, and unites the towering summits of properly, a succession of vallies, varying in their altitude Peru and Chili with the mountains of Brazil and Para- from 10,600 to 13,900 feet. Here the temperature is the plain guay.
delightful, and the whole aspect of the country agree- of Quito. These subordinate arms of the Andes, according to ably contrasted with the desolate regions that must be irmed by the enlightened traveller who first suggested this ar- traversed in approaching the plain, and that surround
rangement of them, divide that part of the continent of it on every side. It presents, indeed, altogether a most America over which they stretch, into three immense interesting scene; walled in from every other by its plains, called the valley of the Oronoco, that of the mountains, covered with everlasting snow, and overMaragnon, and the Pampas of Buenos Ayres; which are spread with towns and villages of the most picturesque all enclosed on the western side by the great chain of beauty. The city of Quito crowns the prospect norththe Andes, but are open on the east, and towards the ward, but the buildings of the entire province are Atlantic ocean. The valley of the Oronoco, consisting usually of stone, or a peculiar kind of brick, which is of level tracts covered with reedy herbage and palms, dried in the shade. A large square forms the central is the most northern plain. Here the primitive rock part of each town, and one side is generally occupied of the sub-soil is covered with lime-stone, gypsum, and with a church. The streets, in general, proceed in calcareous formations; while in the plain of the Marage right angles from this square, and give the whole the non, the soil is remarkably thin, and though it every- appearance of an extensive garden. The climate, acwhere abounds in wood, the granite, unmixed with any cording to Humboldt, has experienced a considerable allavial deposit, frequently appears. The most southern variation since the last earthquake with which it was valley, or Pampas of Buenos Ayres, is a dead flat of afflicted. Previous to which, the thermometer stood great extent, clothed like the valley of the Oronoco, at 15° or 16°; but it now stands, on an average, from with a coarse species of herbage, and generally occu- 4o to 10° of Reaumur.
pied by herds of wild cattle, which are killed in vast The enormous mountains of Casitagua, Pichincha, Mountains ature of numbers for the sake of their hides. It contains beds Atacazo, Corazon, Ilinissa, Carguirazo, Cunambay, and on cach
of secondary formation to an enormous depth ; in which, Chimborazo, rear their lofty heads to the west of this side. under the rays of a tropical sun, the most luxuriant plain. On the east are the mountains of Guamani, fruits are found in perfection.
Cayambe, Antisana, Passuchoa, Ruminavi, Quelendama, In the neighbourhood of Quito, the approach to the Cotopaxi, Tunguragua, and Capa Urcu, or El Altar; Andes from the western coast, merits particular ad- the latter of which (according to the tradition of the miration. The road lies through the most beautiful Indians) was originally more elevated in its summit than forests; the foliage of which is agreeably diversified by even Chimborazo. a thousand varieties of colour; the rugged precipices of The appearance of these mountains is not so imposing the mountains are softened by distance; and the scenery as might justly be anticipated from their amazing height, in general wears an air of harmony and regularity. But on account of the elevation of the plain on which they as we hasten onward, the natural wildness and sub- rest. Thus the Chimborazo and the Cotopaxi, which are, limity of the scene gradually engross our view, and the in reality, 6,000 feet higher than Mont Blanc, scarcely tremendous interstices of the mountains; and the ca appear more sublime than that monarch of the Alps taracts which shelve down their sides, and force their from the vale of Chamouni; if, indeed, the comparing way into the plains beneath, are calculated to remove power of travellers that have visited both, is in such every impression of serenity, and fill the mind with extraordinary scenes to be supposed to possess much tumultuous agitation.
accuracy. The actual path of the traveller, too, must now be Chimboraso, or Chimborazo, which has been geo- Chimbofrequently cleared by the axe; the ground beneath his metrically ascertained to be 21,441 feet in height, razo. feet assumes a totally different character to what the is of the form of a dome, and is usually considered the first promise of the scenery would induce him to sup« highest point of elevation in the globe. It rears its lofty pose; equinoctial torrents render it everywhere swampy summits from the plain of Tapia, which in itself is 9,481 and dangerous, while the rays of the sun very feebly feet above the level of the sea. It narrows toward the top penetrate the overhanging foliage. As the path as into a conical shape, and has been the frequent object cends, and the opening of the woods relieve him of these of unsuccessful enterprizes. Humboldt, undismayed difficulties, impetuous torrents rush from the surround by the failures of his precursors, succeeded in scaling ing heights, and are crossed by the most frail and pre- a ridge of volcanic rocks to within 240 toises of the sumcarious bridges, formed of the matted grasses of these mit; but the extreme tenuity of the air, and the fissures regions; the best roads lead along the edge of awful by which he was surrounded, impeded all further asprecipices, and are frequently inaccessible, except to a cension. Here the blood streamed from his lips and single mule, well-accustomed to them, and to whose various parts of his face; and the dense fogs rendered discretion the life of man must be wholly com the whole journey at once dismal and unsatisfactory. mitted.
The traveller only appears, in this instance, to have acandes of all the portions of the Andes that have become complished a higher feat of daring than his predefuito. known to us by the observations of successive travellers, cessors, for beyond observing a small kind of moss to
none appear to exceed in interest, or in grandeur, the abound all the way, and every living creature (even the magnificent central group in the province of Quito. condor) to have been left far below, he seems to have We return to particularize the great features of this been incapable of making any other discovery. The line group, and some of the most remarkable mountains it of congelation is marked on this and all the neighbourcontains. These form, as we have intimated, two pro ing heights with a surprising uniformity. On the northern digious ridges, which enclose an immense plain, extend- declivity of Chimborazo, the road from Guayaquil to
ANDES. Quito is situated, and leads through the most grand Cayambe Ureu, whose summit is crossed by the Ann scenery, approaching nearly to the region of perpetual equatorial line, is the highest mountain of this range
with the exception of Chimborazo. It rises to an ele- Caraiso Cotopaxi. Cotopaxi is, perhaps, the next most remarkable vation of 19,386 feet from the level of the sea, and is l'reu
mountain of the Andes, and the most elevated volcano of the shape of a truncated cone.
vered with cinders. The river Sangay rises in this Pichincha. Pichincha, though inferior in elevation to Coto- desert; and, after a junction with the Upano, flows
paxi, rising only to 15,939 feet from the level of the into the Maragnon, under the appellation of the
Northward of this, about seven leagues, is the rol
ANDES. cano Tunguragua, remarkable for the hot springs which tempests, ascended from all sides with amazing dis- ANDES.
issue from its sides, and which have caused warm tinctness, and lightnings were seen to stream from ingura baths to be erected in the neighbourhood. The town every part of the horizon, while the spectators enjoyed
of Riobamba was once entirely overwhelmed by an the invigorating sun-beams, and a delightfully serene eruption from this mountain, which is 16,500 feet in sky. At these welcome intervals, our mathematicians altitude. Carguirazo is to the N. W. of Tunguragua, would exercise their limbs in every possible mode to
and rises 15,540 feet above the level of the sea. preserve them from the most fatal numbness, and were isit of the
In the years 1734, &c. M. Bouguer, and other ma- glad to enjoy the sports of childhood in a scene that reach and thematicians of France and Spain, were engaged in a dwindled man into a child, by rolling fragments of zaislima- commission from their respective governments, to make rock down the mountain, and attentively listening to emati.
certain observations on the figure of the earth in this the reverberations produced. In a few minutes, howpart of the Andes, a circumstance which has supplied ever, the rising clouds would disperse every attraction some of the most interesting particulars respecting the of the scene; the difficulty of respiration would reclimate in high altitudes that has hitherto been given. turn; and overwhelming sheets of snow and hail comOn their arrival at the kingdom of Quito, it was deter- pel them to retire within. While pursuing their calmined that they should continue the series of the culations, and at all hours of the night, frequent contriangles for measuring an arch of the meridian south cussions of the entire precipice would be felt, occaof that city. The company accordingly divided into sioned by the fall of enormous fragments of rocks, and two separate bodies, attended by their respective as- resounding from below with a more appalling noise, as sistants in the enterprize. To Don George Juan and they were the only earthly sounds that disturbed the M. Godin were assigned the superintendance of one silence of these regions. party, which selected the mountain of Pambamarca for The door of their hut was closed on the outside Precantious their observations; while M. Bouguer, himself, M. de la by thongs of leather, and every precaution adopted to taken. Condamine, and Don Ulloa, ascended the highest point make it air-tight within. To repel the full effects of of Pichincha. An abridgment of the narrative of the shivering blasts, however, or indeed to alter in any their proceedings, particularly that of the latter party, very considerable degree the temperature of the atwill be acceptable to the reader, and supersede any mosphere, even in this closely-crowded spot, seemed general description of the characteristic storms of these alike impossible. As their days were sometimes renheights.
dered nearly as dark as the night by the mist, lamps tir abode in order to make their temporary abode in these were kept continually burning, and every individual Pichin- wintry regions as tolerable as possible, and convenient was supplied with a chafing-dish of coals for his own
for their mathematical pursuits, both companies sup- use; but when the rigour of the climate was thus renplied themselves, in the first instance, with field tents; dered for a while supportable, the fear of being blown but as they ascended the summit of Pichincha, it was over the precipice compelled them, after each succeedfound utterly impossible to use them, both from the ing storm, to encounter the inclemencies of the air, narrowness of the points on which they were obliged to and free their hut from the masses of snow and ice fix for their observations, and the violence of the winds which would accumulate on the top. Their attendant Desertion of continually roaring over them. On the top of this Indians were so benumbed by the cold, that they were
the Indians. mountain they could only erect a single hut, and that with difficulty persuaded, for the first day or two, to so small as with difficulty to contain them when they stir from a small tent where a considerable fire was had crept into its low door. This point was 100 fa- kept up, so that the mathematicians themselves were thoms above the desert of Pichincha, and it cost the obliged to undertake the principal share of every kind party four hours of incessant labour and danger to of labour. After this period, the Indians had nearly reach it on foot, after they had brought their mules to jeoparded the lives of the entire party, by a determinathe highest altitude possible. With the most indefa- tion not to remove the snow from their door on a certigable perseverance did the members of the commis- tain morning; and but for intelligence of the conspiracy sion endure all the bitterness and privations of their being furnished by one of them who performed the task
precarious lodgement on this craggy rock for three and on this occasion himself, our adventurers had been en, fogs
, twenty days. From their first ascent, the subtlety of tirely abandoned without warning. So general, indeed, of the the air rendered respiration exceedingly difficult during was the desertion of their attendants from the scene of
any exertion; and the severity of the cold at this these severities, that the mathematicians were com-
These circumstances compelled the The general food of the party during their stay on Food, and party to remain generally within the hut; but whenever this desolate spot was a small quantity of rice boiled final effects the fog and clouds retired downwards, and the wind with flesh meat, or fowl, procured from Quito. These
abode here. was calm, the scene is represented as having been provisions were kept with difficulty from freezing while highly beautiful. The clouds far beneath assumed the they were eating them. On their first arrival, they tried appearance of a circumambient ocean, in which their the use of strong liquors, with the hope of alleviating the
a central island. Occasionally, the effects of the cold, but the experiment was entirely indeep murmur of whirlwinds, or the distant sound of effectual; and for the purpose of procuring any abiding
of rock rose
ANDES. warmth, or quickening the circulation of the blood, is more or less hard. The order of the beds is not always ANDE
declared to have been as unavailing as cold water. the same; and I have often observed considerable de The final effects of the cold on all parts of the system rangements - a superior bed in one mountain being inwere almost intolerable. Their feet became swelled ferior in another; and in these derangements the laws and tender, especially when exposed to the heat, while of gravity are by no means observed. Nevertheless, all to move about for the sake of exercise was attended the beds, in general, affect a kind of regularity in their with scarcely less anguish. Their hands were knotted direction, which is from S. to N.; and as they incline with chilblains; their lips chopped and swelled; and a little to the W. according to the fall of the sea, the very effort of articulation constantly drew blood. they seem to have followed the current of the ocean, Humboldt, as we have seen, describes similar mo which, on account of the position of the country, is mentary effects of the cold in these regions, which suf- from S. to N. Besides the mountains composed of
ficiently corroborates this interesting narrative. different beds, there are some of uniform structure; or Mineralogy The mineralogy of the Andes has been but little homogeneous beds of lime-stone, gypsum, talc, cos, or -of the explored. From the travellers who preceded Hum- whet-stone; of granite, of simple and primitive rocks, Andes.
boldt we shall endeavour to gather a few particulars, of basalt, lava, and other volcanic substances; and especially of the Chilian Andes; but to the conclusion some of shells, little or not at all decomposed, as menof the labours of that interesting traveller must we look tioned by Ulloa in his voyage. But all these homofor the completion of any lucid statement on this geneous mountains are barren, only producing some subject.
languishing shrubs, while the mountains disposed in The precious metals of Peru and Lima are deposited, beds, which are always covered with a crust of good according to Helms, in veins of quartz or alluvial soil, present a vigorous and agreeable vegetation. The layers of sand-stone and iron-sand, resting in the ar exterior form of all the stratified mountains furnishes gillaceous schistus, of which the great chain of the another palpable proof of the incumbence of the ocean, Andes is, according to this author, principally com- their bases, which are almost always extensive, enposed. At Potosi, the principal silver mine abounds in larging gradually, form gentle vales, whose inflexions ferruginous quartz, bedded in a fine yellow argillaceous and inclinations impress, in a lively manner, the long slate. In the neighbourhood of the lake of Titicaca, abode and direction of the ocean. Their salient and he describes the basis of argillaceous schistus as co- retreating angles also correspond. On descending into vered with alluvial deposits of marl, gypsum, and lime- these vales, it may be perceived, without difficulty, stone; sand, porphyry, and even rock-salt. Near that the organization is the same with that of the Guancavilica the mountains are composed almost en- stratified mountains, as the same materials and distirely of sand-stone and lime-stone; northward of this position appear throughout, with this difference, that portion of the Andes they are more calcareous, yet almost all the substances are decayed, or even reduced rich in metallic ore.
to earth." Molina, Molina, in his Saggio Sulla Storia Naturale del Chili, Humboldt found the whole of his second subordinate fundit i
describes the enormous masses of the Chilian Andes branch of the Andes, as we have intimated, composed as consisting of “ a quartzose rock, of a composition of primitive rock, principally granite, which seems to almost uniform, and in which marine bodies are never be the probable base of the entire chain. Comparing found, as they are in the secondary mountains. On this branch with the cordillera of the coast in the the summit of Descabesado," he says, “a most ele- Journal de Physique, he thus gives us the order in which vated mountain in the midst of the principal chain of the primary rocks appear. 1. Massive granite, occathe Andes, and which in height does not appear to be sionally mixed with jad and plumbago; 2. Foliated inferior to the famous Chimborazo of Quito, a number granite and mica slate, interspersed with garnets; 3. of marine shells has been observed, either petrified or Primitive slate, with beds of native alum ; 4. Slate, calcined, and probably deposited by water. The sum- mixed with hornblende, green-stone, amygdaloid, and mit of this mountain, which is flat, bears marks of a great quantities of porphyry-slate. The usual arrangevolcanic eruption : it is now a square plain, each side ment, or inclination of the primitive rocks, is to the being about six miles in length; and in the middle is a N. W. In what he calls the secondary rocks, which lake of extreme depth, which, so far as can be judged compose the Andes of the coast of Venezuela
, the by appearances, was the crater of the volcano. All granite is succeeded by gneiss and beds of primitive the ridges on the sides of the Andes, as well as those lime-stone; the mica slate is covered with hornblende more maritime, or more inland, are of secondary for- and lime-stone, and this again with beds of Lydianmation. Their summits are commonly more rounded; stone, gypsum, petrisolen, and calcareous free-stone. and they are formed in horizontal beds of various sub- The granite is often stratified in beds from two to three stances and thickness. In all these beds marine bodies feet thick, and contains large crystals of felspar. abound; and even impressions of plants or animals Red garnets and sapphire are frequently mixed with are often discovered. I have observed in the exca- mica slate in the primitive rocks; and in the gneiss of vations which have been made, and in the courses of the secondary rocks a few green garnets are found. the rivers, that the lowest visible bed of all these In the cordillera of the cataracts of the Oronoco, large mountains is a kind of cos, or whet-stone, of a reddish masses of a glowing yellow talc also appear, a subcolour, and sandy grain; but sometimes a quartz of stance which gave such celebrity to the El Dorado in sand, or a pretty compact tufa of a dark brown colour. the centre of the Anues, as a golden mountain, The other beds are clays of different colours, marls, Chlorite slate sometimes occurs in this cordillera, and marbles of several kinds, schistus, spars, gypsum, the most beautiful hornblende occasionally penetrates fossile coal; after which appear metallic veins, ochre, the streets of St. Thome and Guaiana. quartz, granite, porphyry, sand-stone, and other rocks Petrifactions do not frequently appear in the Andes ;
the sun Date
ve cleva. n of the
ANDES. but patches of gypsum are not uncommon; and Hum or border of the same materials. Over this frail path- ANDES.
boldt found, in the calcareous free-stone of the coast, way the Indian darts with alacrity, when unloaded; or, Petifac
vast numbers of recently petrified shells, at nine leagues swung to and fro by the blast, hums his national tunes Modes of jors rarely distance from the sea. In Peru, fossil-shells have been as he conveys the trembling traveller on his back, and passing
found at the extraordinary height of 12,800 feet above contemplates, unmoved, the awful abyss below. Humthe level of the ocean; and near Guancavilica, mixed boldt crossed the Quebrada of Chota, on his apwith the lime-stone noticed by Helms, at the height of proach to Quito, and found it of the enormous depth 14,120. In Europe they have never been found higher of 4,950 feet.
In the interior it was very sultry. than the top of the Pyrenees, or at an altitude of That of Cutaco, at the bottom of which runs a river of empara. 11,700 feet. Basalt is found on Pichincha, at 15,500 the same name, is 4,300 feet in perpendicular descent.
feet above the sea, upwards of 10,000 feet beyond the These regions have their travelling porters, or cargueros, condary highest altitude at which it occurs in the Old World. generally blacks, or mulattoes, who devote themselves to tuations. Beds of coal rise in Peru to the enormous height of the assistance of passengers over the mountains, and will
14,700 feet; and at Santa Fe, to 8,650 feet; while sometimes carry and climb with them for miles. They granite, on the other hand, which is found in the will bear from 15 to 18 stone, for eight or nine hours highest elevations of Europe, never reaches beyond in the day, without complaining; or convey the traveller those of from 11,000 to 12,000 feet in America. in a chair, on their naked back, until it is worn and
Porphyry, green-stone, basalt, and phonolite, every- chafed through the skin, like that of an over-worked where abound on the summits of the great chain of the beast of burden. The remuneration expected by these Andes, broken into a thousand fantastic shapes. Of poor wretches is trifling in the extreme. the first of these, the entire summit of Chimborazo, In particular places the rocks approach to an incon- Natural according to Humboldt, is composed, as well as those siderable distance; and at Icononzo, in the new king- bridges. of Cayambe and Antisana; while masses of 10,000 or dom of Granada, is a natural bridge over one of these 12,000 feet in depth commonly flank the chain. Near clefts, which is 50 feet long, by about 40 feet broad, the bottom of this chain two different sorts of lime-stone and rising nearly 300 feet above the fine river Summa occur, one with a silicious base, enclosing in some Paz, which occupies its bottom. Sixty feet down is places cinnabar and coal; the other generally cal- another arch, formed of three sloping blocks of stone careous, and cementing the secondary rocks. It is that seem to have been dislodged from above, and stated, as a remarkable fact, that the porphyry of wedged together in their fall. The thickness of the these mountains never contains quartz, and rarely mica, upper arch is about eight feet. though it is commonly mixed with hornblende. There The most difficult passage in the whole of the Cor. Pass of the is a mass of pure quartz west of Caxamanca, of the depth dilleras of the Andes is, according to Humboldt, that mountain of of 9,600 feet, and a rock of sand-stone, near Cuenza, of the mountain of Quindiu, in New Granada; and his Quindiu. of 5,000 feet. Every operation of nature in these re own account of this memorable part of his journey will gions seems conducted on their own magnificent scale. give the reader a lively impression of the scene: One of the most remarkable metallic substances in the “ It is a thick uninhabited forest,” says he, “ which Humbolt's bowels of these mountains, is the pacos, a compound in the finest season cannot be traversed in less than narrative. of clay, oxyd of iron, and the muriate of silver, mixed ten or twelve days. Not even a hut is to be seen, nor with native silver. Their inexhaustible mines are but can any means of subsistence be found. Travellers at too well known to the world ; and, managed with a all times of the year furnish themselves with a month's liberal policy, under the guidance of scientific know- provision, since it often happens that, by the melting of ledge, might unquestionably be made far more pro- the snows, and the sudden swell of the torrents, they ductive than at present. For several interesting par- find themselves so circumstanced, that they can deticulars respecting these, see the article AMERICA, scend neither on the side of Carthago, nor that of p. 462 of this vol.
Ibague. The highest point of the road, the Garito del On the whole, the mineralogical facts and character Paramo, is 11,500 feet above the level of the sea. As of these stupendous mountains are but too partially the foot of the mountain, towards the oks of the known to furnish any correct hypothesis of the process Cauca, is only 3,150 feet, the climate there is generally of nature in their formation; and it will be well if, as mild and temperate. The path-way which forins the these facts increase upon us, the immaturity of the passage of the Cordilleras is only 12 or 15 inches in science of mineralogy itself does not appear more disc breadth, and has the appearance, in several places, of a tinctly than ever.
gallery dug, and left open to the sky. In this part of • Que Abrupt precipices, similar to those which mark the the Andes, as almost in every other, the rock is covered das
, or southern face of the cordillera of the cataracts of the with a thick stratum of clay. The streamlets which Andin Oronoco, occur in every part of the parent chain of the Aow down the mountains have hollowed out gullies
Andes near the equator, and diversify its appearance with about 20 feet deep. Along these crevices, which are the most horrid chasms, or rents, here called Quebradas, full of mud, the traveller is forced to grope his
pasvarying from 100 feet to 4 or 5,000 feet in depth. sage; the darkness of which is increased by the thick The natives of Peru and Chili have several expedients vegetation that covers the opening above. The oxen, for crossing these glens; and dangers at which every which are the beasts of burden commonly used in this European shudders involuntarily, custom has taught country, can scarcely force their way throngh these them to regard with indifference. One of their most galleries, some of which are more than a mile in length; common methods is to throw a sort of hanging bridge and if, perchance, the traveller meets them in one of these from mountain to mountain, composed principally of passages, he finds no means of avoiding them but by the strongest fibres of the agave, strengthened with turning back, and climbing the earthen wall which borreeds and cane, and protected with a slight rail-work, ders the crevice, and keeping himself suspended by