« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
tions and states. We set out from the most complicated union to arrive at the most simple elements; we travel in retrogression the history of the progress of the human mind; and we find in space what is due only to the succession of time.*”. In New Spain and Peru, if we except the missions, the colonists nowhere returned to the state of nature. Fixing themselves in the midst of agricultural nations, who themselves lived under governments equally complicated and despotic, the Europeans took advantage of the preponderancy of their civilization, their cunning, and the authority they derived from the conquest. This particular situation, and the mixture of races of which the interests are diametrically opposite, became an inexhaustible source of hatred and disunion. In proportion as the descendants of the Europeans became more numerous than those sent over directly by the mother country, the white race divided into two parties, of which the ties of blood cannot heal the resentments. The colonial government from a mistaken policy wished to take advantage of these dissensions. The greater the colony, the greater the suspicion of the administration. According to the ideas which unfortunately have been adopted for ages, these distant regions are considered as tributary to Europe. Authority
* M. de Talleyrand in his Essay on Colonization.
is there distributed not in the manner which the public interest requires, but according as the dread of seeing a too rapid increase in the prosperity of the inhabitants seems to dictate. Seeking security in civil dissensions, in the balance of power, and in a complication of all the springs of the great political machine, the mother country foments incessantly the spirit of party and hatred among the casts and constituted authorities. From this
state of things arises a rancour which disturbs the enjoyments of social life.
PARTICULAR STATISTICAL Account OF THE INTENDANCIES OF WIIICH THE KINGIDOM OF NEW SPAIN IS COMPOSED.—THEIR TERRITORIAL EXTENT AND POPULATION.
Qf the political division of the Merican territory, and the propor
tion of the population of the intendancies to their territorial extent.—Principal cities.
Before giving the table which contains a particular statistical account of the intendancies of New Spain, we shall discuss the principles on which the new territorial divisions are founded. These divisions are entirely unknown to the most modern geographers; and we here repeat what we have already stated in the introduction to this work, that our general map of New Soain is the only one which contains the limits of the intendancies established since 1776. Mr. Pinkerton, in the second edition of his Modern Geography", has endeavoured to give a
* It is this moment announced (Bibliotheque Americaine, 1808, No. 9,) that M. Pinkerton boasts of having availed minute description of the Spanish possessions in North America; and he has contrived to mix several exact notions derived from the Piajero Universal, with the most vague data furnished by the dictionary of M. Alcedo. This author, who believes himself to possess a singular knowledge of the true territorial divisions of New Spain, considers the provinces of Sonora, Cinaloa, and la Pimeria, as parts of New Biscay. He divides what he calls the dominion (domaine) of Mexico into the districts of Neuva Galicia, Panuco, Zacatula, &c. &c. According to this principle we should say that the three great divisions of Europe are Spain, Languedoc, Catalonia, and the territories of Cadiz and Bordeaux. Before the introduction of the new administra
himself of my manuscripts for his work on Mexico. I communicated, with the frankness natural to me, several manuscript notes to M. Bourgoing, M. Alexander Laborde, and several other savans of equal respectability. I never communicated any thing to M. Pinkerton; and the manner in which he treated me in his Geography, before my return to Europe, was not calculated to produce an intimacy between us. A compiler as inaccurate as he is arrogant, M. Pinkerton, in the style which is peculiar to him, finds every thing which is repugnant to the ideas formed by him in his closet “ridiculous, disgusting, and absurd.” Not knowing that the map of La Cruz is drawn up from that of Father Caulin, he will allow no other course to the rivers but what he finds indicated by the former. He pushes his scepticism so far, that if we would believe him, M. Depons, the author of the Voyage a la Terre-Ferme, does not even know the name of the country in which he lived for four years! The notes of the new edition of M. Pinkerton's Geography especially contribute to diffuse the most erroneous ideas in physics and descriptive natural history.
tion by Count Don Jose de Galvez, minister of the Indies, New Spain contained, 1, El Reyno de Mexico; 2, El Reyno de Nueva Galicia; 3, El Nuevo Reyno de Leon; 4, la colonia del Nuevo Santander; 5, la provincia de Texas; 6, la provincia de Cohahuila; 7, la provincia de Nueva Biscaya; 8, la provincia de la Sonora; 9, la provincia de Nuevo Mexico; and 10, Ambas Californias, or las provincias de la vieja y Nueva California. These old divisions are still very frequently used in the country. The limits which separate la Nueva Galicia from el Reyno de Mexico, to which a part of the old kingdom of Mechoacan belongs, are also the line of demarcation between the jurisdiction of the two audiences of Mexico and Guadalaxara. This line, which I was not able to trace on my general map, does not exactly follow the contours of the new intendancies. It begins on the coast of the gulf of Mexico, ten leagues to the north of the Rio de Panuco and the city of Altamira near Bara Ciega, and runs through the intendancy of S. Luis Potosi to the mines of Potosi and Bernalejo; from thence passing along the southern extremity of the intendancy of Zacatecas, and the western limits of the intendancy of Guanaxuato, it traverses the intendancy