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nevertheless divided into four different classes.
ounces and a halfi and at Colipa, from nine to
ten ounces. The chica jina is five =ceI1;timet1'€S
POLITICAL ESSAY on ‘rust’ [noon 1v.
the Levant 7;“-‘but as its odour is different from the vanilla called grande jina it has never
hitherto had any sale. i
We see from what has been state'd respecting the vanilla, that it is with the goodness of this commodity as with that of the quinquina, which not only depends on the species of cinchona from which it proceeds, but also on the height of the ‘country, the exposure of the tree, the period of the harvest, and the care employed in drying the bark. The commerce of both the vanilla and quinquina, is in the hands of a few persons called habilitadores, because they advance money to the cosecheros, i. e., to the Indians employed in the harvest, who are in this way under the direction of undertakers. The latter draw almost the whole profit of this branch of Mexican industry. The competition among the purchasers, is so much less at Misantla and Colipa; as a long experience is necessary to guard against deception in the purchase of prepared vanilla. A single stained pod (manchada) may occasion the loss of a whole chest, in the passage from America to Europe. The blemishes which are thus discovered either in ‘the pod or thestalk (gargzmta) are designated by particular names (mojo negro, mojo blanco, garro.) A prudent purchaser examines over and over the pacquets, which he sends in the same chest.
can. x.] KINGDOM lOF'NEW SPAIN. . '35
last twelve-years, the thousand of » vanilla of the
first class at an average price of 25 or 85
The district of Papantla, formerly an Alcal-
36 POLITICAL ESSAY ON TI-IE [soon iv.
threads of the Pite ,- but it weighs less by nearly a ninth than that of Misantla. I know not the quantity of vanilla produced in the province of Honduras, and annually exported from the small port of Truxillo ; but it appears to be very inconsiderable.
The forests of Quilate yield, in very abundant years, 800 millares of vanilla; a bad harvest in very rainy years amounts only to 200. The mean produce is estimated thus
Millares. Misantla and Colipa, - - - - - - 700 Papantla - - - - - - - - 100 Teutila - - - - - - - -, I I0
The value of these 910 millares is, at Vera Cruz, from 80 to 40,000 piastres. We must add the produce of the harvests of Santiago and San Andres Tuxtla, for which I am in want of sufliciently accurate data. It frequently happens that the harvest of one year does not pass all at once into Europe, but that a part of
it is reserved to be added to that of the follow
ing year. In 1802, 1798 millares of vanilla left the port of Vera Cruz. Itis astonishing, that the total consumption of Europe is not greater. ' , .The same eastern slope of the Cordillera,.on which the vanilla is produced, produces also the sarsaparilla (zarza) of which there was exported
from Vera Cruz, in 1803, nearly 250,000 ° kilogrammes ’r, and the Jalap (Purga de Xalapa) which is the root, not of the mirabilis jalapa, of the M. longiflora, or of the M. dichotoma, but of the convolvolusjalapa. This convolvolus vegetates at an absolute height of from 18 to 14- hundred metres i on the whole chain of mountains extending from the Volcan d’Orizaba, to the Cofre de Perote. We did not meet with it in our herborizations around the town of Xalapa itself; but the Indians who inhabit the neighbouring villages brought us some excellent roots of it collected near Banderilla, to the east of San Miguel el Soldado, This valuable remedy is procured in the Subdelegacion de Xalapa, around the villages of Santiago, Tlachi, Tihuacan de los Reyes, Tlacolula, Xicochimalco, Tatatila, Yxhuacan, and Ayahualulco; in the jurisdiccion de San Juan de los Llanos, near San Pedro Chilchotla. and Quimixtlan; in the partidos of the towns of Cordoba, _0rizaba, and San Andres Tu.z'tla.'s ‘The -true, Purga de Xalapa delights onlyrin a" temperate climate, or rather an almost
'* 551,750 lb. avoird. Trans.
1' The sarsaparilla employed in commerce proceeds from several species of smilax, very different from the S. Sanaparilla. See the description of the ten new species, brought by us in the species of M. Willdenow. T. iv. p. i. p. 773. "
1 From 4264 to 4592 feet. Trans. _