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brought the old continent to an end, I beds, in which a few trilobites and other and during the Liassic and Oolitic epoch sea forms have been found. Going back (Jurassic) the Highlands of Scotland and in time beyond this, all reasoning or deother mountain regions in the British Is- tailed geological history becomes vague lands formed, with some other European in the extreme. The faunas of the CamPalæozoic rocks, groups of islands, round brian and especially of the Lower Siwhich, in warm seas, the Jurassic strata lurian rocks, from their abundance and were deposited. These relics of an older variety show that they are far removed continent, by deposition of newer strata from the beginning of life. Looking to and subsequent gradual upheaval, began the vanishing point in the past and the to grow in extent, and at length formed nnknown future, well might Hutton dethe great continental area through which clare that in all that the known rocks tell the mighty rivers flowed that deposited us “ we find no vestige of a beginning – the strata of the Purbeck and Wealden no trace of an end." series of England and the continent of Europe.
A larger submergence at length closed this broad local terrestrial epoch, and in
From Chambers' Journal. those areas now occupied by Northern
THE CONIBOS. Europe (and much more besides), the sea, during the deposition of great part
In the course of the exploration of of the Chalk, attained a width and depth South America from the Pacific to the so great, that probably only the tops of Atlantic, whose history is being narrated our British Palæozoic mountains stood in instalments by Mr. Paul Marcoy;* the above its level.
expedition fell in with, and made careful By subsequent elevation of the land, studies of a number of Indian tribes the Auvio-marine Eocene strata of West- whose existence is hardly known to the ern Europe were formed, including in the outer world, but who offer an almost endterm Auvio-marine the whole English less variety of tribal customs and indiseries, embracing the London Clay, which vidual features to the observation of the as shown by its plant remains was de traveller. Among these there are some posited at, or not far from, the mouth of who, having in former times been brought a great river, which in size, and in the under the now long-dispelled influence of manner of the occurrence of some of the Spanish Missiones, adopted a kind these plants, may be compared to the of Christianity, and for a time, at least, Ganges. With this latter continent there had a glimmering of civilization ; while came in from some land, unknown as yet, there are others who have never suffered a great and new terrestrial mammalian the isolation of their savage life to be infauna wonderfully different from that terrupted by communications from withwhich preceded it'in Mesozoic times, and out, who have adhered steadily to their from that day to this the greater part of own ways, and whose aspect of to-day is, Europe has been essentially a continent, in all probability, precisely the same as and in a large sense all its terrestrial that of their forefathers, countless generafaunas have been of modern type.
tions before the armed heel of Pizarro One shadowy continent still remains rang upon the soil of Peru. Among the unnamed, far older than the oldest of latter are the Conibos, a very singular those previously spoken of. What and tribe, whose territory occupies two hunwhere was the land from which the 'thick dred miles of river-frontage, and may be and wide deposits that form the Silurian found upon the map of the Amazons bestrata of Europe were derived ? For all tween Paruitcha and Cosiabatay. Their sedimentary strata, however thick and country abounds in wonderful beauty, and extended in area, represent the degrada- is eminently productive. Inland, on tion of an equal amount of older rocks either bank of the gigantic river, beyond wherewith to form them. Probably, like the long stretches of sand, rise yellowthe American Laurentian rocks, that old tinted slopes, crowned with primeval forland lay in the north, but whether or not, ests, which are tenanted by the beautiful of this at all events I have more than a birds and beasts that abound in regions suspicion, that the red, so-called Cam- but little disturbed by even savage man. brian, beds at the base of the Lower Si- | The river in this part of its course is very lurian series indicate the last relics of the fresh waters of that lost continent, spar-cific Ocean to the Atlantic Occan. By Paul Marcoy.
* A Journey across South America from the Pas ingly interstratified with grey marine London, Edinburgh, and Glasgow: Blackie and Son
beautiful, winding about, studded with are singularly short of stature, never exislands ; and when, in narrow channels, ceeding, rarely ever reaching, five feet it rolls its yellow waters between the sol- three, lumpish of figure, with high cheekemn walls of verdure, which sometimes bones, small yellow eyes (the pupils toreplace the sands, there is perfect silence bacco-colour), oblique in shape, and set on its bosom, while the air beyond is filled wide apart. Their thick lips disclose with the fluttering of leaves, and the stir yellow teeth, well set, and gums dyed of birds and beasts. As the canoes of black by the use of an Indian plant called the explorers glide along, a succession yanammen. Their faces are almost of exquisite landscapes, and strange sights spherical, and Mr. Marcoy says this shape by the river-side, glorious daybreaks, "gives them a look of bonhomie and simtwilights, and moonlights, lend the scene plicity which corrects the disagreeable an inconceivable beauty. Legions of liv- impression they make at first sight.” ing creatures are there ; caymans plough Their skin is very dark, and has a pecuthe sand in furrows; seals come up to liarity which reveals at once the chief breathe, lurk under the reeds ; in the drawback to the otherwise exquisite solitary little bays, dolphins, sometimes pleasure of travelling in their beautiful four abreast, gambol and fash. All along country; "it is rough to the touch, like the shore, on trunks of fallen trees, are shagreen,” says Mr. Marcoy, “ from being wild creatures, jaguars, otters, herons, incessantly punctured by mosquitoes. storks, flamingoes, fishing; and trotting These dreadful insects are the plague of about fearless, unmolested, is the bird of the whole country; the foreigner suffers poetic name, the cultirostre or "peacock unbearably from them, and they never of the roses.” There, too, are couroucous, leave off biting the Conibos, who do not clothed in green, red, and gold; manakins, seem to mind them. Both men and with changing streaks of colour ; orioles women cut their hair like a brush to the and toucans, parrots and paroquets, and level of the eyebrows, and leave the rest the great kingfisher, with his azure back to flow over their shoulders. It is a and white wings fringed with black. peculiarity of this tribe that ornament, Then comes a strip of reeds, broad- indeed almost clothing, is reserved for the leaved, curling, thick, and strong, of men only. In the typical portraits furgreat height, close covert for countless nished by Mr. Marcoy, the women wear water and mud creatures ; and again the only a strip of brown cloth, though the broad shelving sands. A poetic voyage, mosquitoes are quite impartial in their truly, but sometimes interrupted by a attacks, while the men wear a loose garstrange sound, not to be heard without ment, like a wagoner's smock without terror even when it has been often heard. sleeves, of brown cotton, ornamented with It is the noise of the frequent landslips, a border of Greek pattern, lozenges, and when huge masses of the river-banks, zigzags, traced in black with a pencil to composed of sand and vegetable detritus, imitate embroidery. Whence came this have been undermined by the waves, and vague sense of art? They all paint their suddenly detaching themselves from the faces, but the men use more colouring firm ground for perhaps a mile in length, than the women, laying on the red very slip down into the great river, gging freely, in thick, broad stripes. Black with them the trees they have nourished, paint is used for (literally) body-colour. and the linking lianas which bind them A Conibo in full dress will have sandals together, as though with mighty cables. painted on his feet as far as the ankles, Down they rush, with all their beautiful or buskins as high as the knees, like living load, and are lost in the waters, riding-boots ; a jacket or coat painted on while the thunder of their ruin, often his body, open at the breast, and festooned heard at ten miles' distance, is like heavy round the hips; on his hands gloves or discharges of ordnance.
mittens. But besides these ordinary deBeyond the shelving sands, by the signs, they have arabesques of the most creeks and streams which branch off from complicated kind for gala-days, which the great Ucayali-Amazon, the Conibos they apply to their faces by a process of dwell; a race utterly isolated, but a branch stencilling, just as the Etruscans applied of the once great Þano nation. But for their patterns to their vases, and they the habitual expression of strangeness adorn themselves with necklaces and earand sadness which characterizes their rings of black and white beads which they countenances, in common with those of buy at Tierra Blanca. A few of the men all the Peruvian Indians, the Conibos who occasionally visit the Missions to exdiffer from the other native tribes. They change turtles, or the prepared fat of
those creatures, or wax, for axes, knives, borders, lozenges, intersecting lines, and and beads, have learned the use of straw other ornamental fancies, which they emhats, which they make for themselves ploy in the decoration of their pottery, from the young palm reeds. The toilet their painted designs include some charmof the men is a serious operation, in which ing hieroglyphics, suggested by the plua Conibo usually spends half his time ; mage of the beautiful heron of the counthe women never think of any personal try (Ardea helias). «« The fantastic adornment, and are mere slaves, toilers, markings of this bird, extremely rare, and beasts of burden. Their intelligence and nearly always solitary, have given the is, however, very remarkable, and it is Conibo women the idea of a special kind with no small surprise we learn that they of arabesques for their vases and woven possess an extraordinary talent for the stuffs, as the spatula-shaped tail of the manufacture of pottery, and for painting seal has furnished the men with the model and varnishing it afterwards. This is so for their paddles.". entirely unlike anything which has been In addition to this combination of inobserved respecting the other Peruvian dustry and art, which is a most surprisIndian tribes, that it induces a belief in ing spectacle to the traveller in that wonthe superior antiquity of the descent of derful wild land, these people, far more the Conibos, of their kinship to the orig- destitute than most of the African tribes inal race.
These women have no tools of the merest rudiments of property or but their fingers, and one of the shells mechanism, have two funny possessions, of those great mussels which are found never wanting in the cotton-cloth wallet in the lakes of the interior. With these of a Conibo: one is a pair of tweezers, they fashion water-jars, jugs, cups, and formed of the two shells of a mutilus, basins, whose forms might belong to the united by a hinge made of thread; the best period of the Ando-Peruvian ceramic other is a “snuff-taking apparatus," conmanufacture. “ They roll the clay into sisting of a snuff-box made of the shell thin cakes,” says Mr. Marcoy, “which of a bulimus, which its possessor fills to they lay one upon another, and unite with the orifice with tobacco which has been such exactness that it would be impossi- cut in the green state, dried in the shade, ble to discover in their work an equivocal and ground to the finest powder. The line or a doubtful curve. The potter's Conibos do not take snuff merely for their wheel is not more mathematically true.” pleasure, it has a medicinal value among It is in a clearing of the forest, always them. When a Conibo feels his head situated a few steps from their dwelling, heavy, or has caught cold, he begs a comand which the men use as a timber-yard rade to blow down the empty tube of his for the construction of their canoes, that snuff-taking apparatus – known by. the the women establish their earthenware suggestive name chica-chaouh, and thus manufacture. To bake and varnish their gets the powdered nicotine with which work, a clear fire is lighted on the shore. the other tube is filled forced up his nose. Whilst they overlook the progress of the That done, the Conibo, blowing, snufiling, operation, an old woman sings and dances and sneezing, exhibits his perfect satisround the pile, to prevent the evil spirit faction by a singular smacking of the lips from touching the vessels. When the and tongue, which is habitual among vessels are baked, the women varnish the these people, and is significant of a variinterior with gum-copal, and then proceed ety of meanings. When a Conibo agrees to their exterior decoration. Five simple to a plan or project, when he wishes to colours are all that these native artists express his pleasure or pride in having make use of; the art of mixing, and the overcome a difficulty, when he has the transition shades, are either unknown to food he prefers, when he is satisfied with them, or not available. Lampblack, yel- the elasticity of his bow, under all pleaslow extracted from one of the Guttiferæ, ant circumstances, indeed, the Conibo a violet-tinted blue yielded by the Ameri- smacks his lips and his tongue. can indigo, a dirty green obtained by The arms of the Conibos are the bow macerating the leaves of a capsicum, and and arrow, the club, and the shooting. a dull red procured from the arnotto, form tube. Through the last they send sharp their entire array of tints. Their pencils poisoned darts, but, unlike the other are made of three or four blades of dried tribes of the Amazon, whose war-lances grass fastened in the middle, or even of a are almost always poisoned, they use cotton wick, rolled up like those paper them solely for the destruction of animals. “ stumps” which artists make for them- The tribe live almost entirely on the turselves as they want them. Besides Greek/ tle. In vain do the forests and the waters
offer them a luxurious variety of food ;, quake rouses them to fear and piety.” nothing but the turtle, its flesh, its The Conibos believe that earthquakes grease, its eggs, its oil, has any charm for are caused by the movements of the them. They eat certain kinds of worms Great Spirit, who, anxious to satisfy himas hors-d'æuvre, and delight in fat, blood- self that the work of his hands still exists, gorged mosquitoes, which they permit to comes down from the stars to look after attain full condition upon their own skin, it. Then the Conibos run out of their undisturbed, as a bonne bouche. The dwellings, leaping and making wild gesmassacre the unlucky amphibia at all tures, and each exclaiming, as if in reply stages of their existence; but the sup- to the call of an invisible person : "Ipima, ply seems as yet to be inexhaustible. Any ipima, evira igni, papa, evira igni !” (A idea of a provision for the future appears moment, a moment, behold me, father, to be utterly unconceived by the Conibos. behold me !). Opposed to this good spirThey live from day to day, and only hunt it, there is an evil spirit, called Yunima, or fish when hunger spurs them. Their dwelling in the earth's centre. Whateagerness in turtle-fishing is rather for ever evils affect the nation are attributed the sake of selling the grease and oil at to him, and the Conibos fear him so the Missions for axes, knives, and beads, much, that they avoid, as far as possible, than for that of laying up any store for uttering his name. their own wants. They are, though Surrounded by turbulent and treacheralways poor, very hospitable. A Conibo ous tribes outside the broad extent of will offer to the friend or tộaveller who their beautiful territory, these quiet, unvisits his mud and leaf hut, the last ba- warlike, idle people dwell, with their utter nana, the last morsel of turtle, the last leg savagery on so many sides, their strange of monkey, with the utmost cheerfulness. unaccountable art, and marked by one They have acquired some notion of clear-characteristic which is totally unlike any ing and culture. Their plantations, in other Indian tribe — it is, a wonderful the middle of an island, or in the corner aptitude for training, birds and quadruof a forest, consist of perhaps a dozen peds without depriving them of their sugar-canes, two or three cotton shrubs, liberty. Peccaries and tapirs may be from which they weave a kind of cloth, seen following their masters like spansome tobacco, and earth-nuts; and these iels, and obeying their every command. little spaces are cut out in the forest, the Macaws, caciques, toucans, carassows fallen trees are left to dry, then they are all birds of beautiful plumage, come and burned, and the sowing or planting done go between the huts of the Conibos and on their smouldering ashes. A Conibo their native forests with the calmest conspade is the shoulder-bone of a seal, with fidence. But their favourite animal is a stick for a handle. Bigamy is tolerated the ape. He goes with them everywhere, among these peaceful savages, and in- and affords them incessant amusement. deed they would not object to polygamy, They are a strange people, a tribe apart only that they have made a law among among the savages of South America, themselves that a man shall not have and the account of them is an interesting more wives than he can support, and, as feature of an instructive book. they are extraordinarily idle, even for savages, this enactment practically limits the number to two. Their funeral ceremonies are very curious, resembling the ancient Scandinavian death-rites. They have an idea of an Omnipotent Being, PRINCE' BISMARCK'S POSITION IN GER
MANY. the creator of heaven and earth, whom they address indifferently, as Papa, father, A FORTNIGHT has elapsed since the and Huchi, grandfather. Their notion Reichstag was closed and Prince Bisof this Being is not without a touch of marck retired to his usual resting-place poetry. They represent him to them- of Varzin. Yet our newspapers have selves,” says Mr. Marcoy, “under the only just commenced to discuss the last human form, filling space, but concealed debates in the German Parliament and from their eyes, and say, that after hav- the possible motives of the Chancellor's ing created this globe, he fled away to temporary retreat. If we are to believe the sidereal regions, from whence he con- certain writers, Prince Bismarck has of tinues to watch over his work. They late fallen into disgrace both with the neither render him any homage, nor re- German people and the German Sovcall him to mind, except when an earth-'ereign, and has sullenly withdrawn from
From The Pall Mall Gazette.
the arena of public life. To any one fa-ground daily and hourly against those miliar with Prussian politics, such a view hostile elements combined. Thus he of the Chancellor's position can only ap- was obliged to fall back for support on pear as the result of an arbitrary combi- the Liberal party in Parliament, which, nation of circumstances coustrued after instead of easing his difficult task, the analogy of affairs in Paris or London. seemed bent on irritating his most ner
It has never been a secret amongst the vous temper on every possible occasion. well-informed that Prince Bismarck's The King, divided by the old anti-Ausinfluence upon his Sovereign has always trian traditions of the Hohenzollern polbeen as difficult to maintain as it was icy and the more recent examples of his hard to win. Its beginnings date from father and brother — wavering between that early period when the Prussian Am- the admiration and confidence with which bassador at Frankfort, so coldly sup- his great Minister inspired him, and the ported by his Government, used to go to gratitude he felt for the men who had Coblentź weekly in order to pay his re- stood by him in the days of danger – spects to the then not over-popular was no easy subject to deal with. On Prince of Prussia. No sooner had the the other hand, Prince Bismarck, whose Prince been appointed Regent than he one rule of conduct is to serve his coungave to the discontented diplomatist a try and his master under all circumstansignificant token of his favour by ap- ces, and who had taken the Liberal side pointing him to the St. Petersburg em- as he had formerly taken and was ready bassy. To him again he resorted when to take again the Conservative side, had the Old Liberals,” by a want of courage no difficulty in getting rid of his ancient and frankness still more than by want of allies. King William, who is not easily skill, had entangled themselves and the brought to dismiss even the least able of King in the question of army reorganiza- his old servants, provided they have faithtion. Prince Bismarck could undertake fully served him and the State, defended the task of cutting the Gordian knot - his Ministers obstinately against their there was no longer any hope of untying chief. Years passed before the Premier obit-on
two conditions only: it was tained the successive resignation of Count necessary to keep complete hold over his Lippe, Von der Heidt, Von Muhler, and master's mind and to be stanchly sup-finally Counts Selchow and Itzenplitz, ported by the upper branch of the Parlia- replacing them by Liberal commoners ment and by his colleagues. As he had like Dr. Leonhardt, Camphausen, Dr. chosen the latter among Conservatives Falck, and Dr. Achenbach. It took yet of the purest water he could fully rely longer, not to reform the House of Lords upon them as long as he opposed Parlia- as he wished, but to subdue it by the ment, press, and public opinion. The creation of a batch of peers. To secure Lords' support was yet more certain, for each of these small victories he was with them interest came to the help of obliged to exert his whole influence, to conviction. It was less easy to over- threaten resignation, and often to withcome the King's constitutional scruples, draw to Varzin, leaving his master to carefully kept alive, so it was said at the cope alone with the difficulties of a given time, by the Liberal element of the situation. Thus, and thus only, was it Court which gathered round the Queen possible to gain acceptance for the nuand the Crown Prince.
merous liberal measures which have been The situation changed altogether in voted during the last seven years both 1866. The leading statesman wąs aban- in the Prussian and German Parliament. doned by his fellow-Ministers, who could Much remained still to be done, hownot forgive his making peace with the re-ever, to make the Prussian Cabinet combellious Parliament. Everybody remem- pletely homogeneous. Field-Marshal bers how the Herrenhaus became more Von Roon's great merits, as well as his and more estranged from him, who had honest but stubborn character, seem to been their ideal of a statesman; and it is have hindered this as much as Count not unknown bow a numerous and influ- Eulenburg's excessive suppleness and ential section of the Court, partly moved versatility. Two survivors of the Bisby Legitimist conditions, partly by marck Cabinet of 1862 hold on, and it family considerations centered about the was they who prevented the reform of dethroned or mediatized dynasties, the House of Peers so much desired by opened a regular campaign against the the Chancellor, who, like all powerful fortunate Minister. From 1866 to natures, does not like to be hampered by 1870 Prince Bismarck had to fight his 'troublesome instruments. In the German