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It is the aspect of these great cities which has probably given rise to the false idea generally prevailing in the colonies, that in warm climates, and consequently in all the lower regions of the torrid zone, more girls than boys are born. The few parish registers which I examined gave a directly contrary result. In the capital of Mexico there were born in five years between 1797 and 1802,
In the parishes of Male births. Female births. the Sagrario - 3705 36()3 of Santa Cruz . 1275 1 167
At Panuco and Yguala, two places situated in a very warm and very unhealthy climate, there was not one register in which the excess was not on the side of the male births". In general, the
fections, and to whom she and her children are obliged to become the slaves. The speech displays great feeling, and is no small credit to female Indian eloquence. (Id. p. 75-6-7.) This is the fate of the Indian women in the Spanish missions; it was once, no doubt, universal over the whole country; and though now, perhaps, somewhat milder among the Indios reducidos, yet a custom is often kept up long after the cause of it has ceased. We might account in this way for the smaller number of females than males among the Indians; and what appears to favour this view is, that in the great cities where the treatment of the females must be better from the influence of the whites, and consequently fewer female children will be murdered, the number of females exceeds that of the males. Trans.
* At Panuco, the parish registers give, from 1793 to 1802, proportion of male to female births appears to me in New Spain to be as 100 : 97; which indicates an excess of males somewhat greater than in France, where for 100 boys there are born 96 girls". As to the proportion of the deaths to the difference of sexes, it was impossible for me to discover the law established by nature. At Panuco, in ten years, there died 479 males for 509 females. At Mexico, there were in one parish, that of the Sagrario, during five years, 2393 female deaths, and 1951 male. According to these data, very insuf. ficient it must be allowed, the excess of men in life ought to be still greater than what it was found. But it appears that in other gountries the male deaths are more frequent than the female deaths. At Yguala and Colimaya, the former were to the latter, for ten years, as 1204 : 1191 and 1330 : 1272. M. de Pomelles has already observed, that in France even, the difference of the sexes is much more sensible in the births than in the deaths; there are one-seventeenth more males than females born, and the peaceful state of the country peasants gives only one-nineteenth more male than female deaths. From the whole of these data we may conclude that in Europe as well as the equinoxial regions, who have enjoyed a long state of tranquility, we should find an excess of males, if the sea, the wars and dangerous employments peculiar to our sex did not tend incessantly to diminish their number.
for 674 male births, 550 female births. At Yguala there were 1738 boys for 1635 girls.
* I need not caution the reader that the proportion of male and female births is one thing, and that of males and females in existence another. For instance, M. de Humboldt has just told us, that the females are to the males in France as 103 : 100, though the female births are to the male as 96 : 100. Trans.
The population of the great cities is by no means stable, and does not remain in a state of equilibrium with respect to the different sexes. The country women come in to the cities to serve in houses who want slaves; and a great number of men leave them to travel through the country as muleteers (arrieros), or to fix their abode in places where there are considerable mines. Whatever be the cause of this disproportion of sexes in the cities, it is no less certain that such a disproportion exists. The following table, which includes only three cities, exhibits a striking contrast to the table which we gave of the general population of eight Mexican provinces:
In the United States of North America the enumerations, which include the whole population, indicate, as in Europe.* and Mexico, an excess of males in life. This excess is very unequal in a country where the emigration of whites, the introduction of many male slaves, and maritime commerce, tend incessantly to disturb the order prescribed by nature. In the states of Vermont f, Kentucky, and South Carolina, there are almost one-tenth more males than females, while in Pensylvania and the state of New York this disproportion does not amount to one-eighteenth.
When the kingdom of New Spain shall enjoy an administration favourable to knowledge, political arithmetic will there furnish data of infinite importance both for statistics in general, and for the physical history of man in particular. How many problems are to resolve in a mountainous country, which exhibits under the same latitude the greatest variety of climates, inhabitants of three or four primitive races, and the mixture of these races in all the combinations imaginable ! How many researches to make regarding the age of puberty, the fecundity of the species, the difference of the sexes, and the longevity which is greater or less according to the elevation and temperature of the places, according to the variety of races, accord
* Yet he has just stated, that in the French empire the females in life are to the males as 103 to 100 ! Trans. f Samuel Blodget, p. 75.
VOL. I. IP R