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CHAPTER XX.

Indian population of the country lying between the great lakes of

Nicaragua and the Pacific-Discovery and conquest of Nica-

ragua by the Spaniards-Cruelties of the Spaniards- The

Indians of Western Central America all belonged to one

stock-Decadence of Mexican civilisation before the arrival

of the Spaniards—The designation “Nahuatls " proposed to

include all the Mexican, Western Central American, and

Peruvian races that had descended from the same ancient

stock-The Nahuatls distinct from the Caribs on one side

and the Red Indians on the other-Discussion of the ques-

tion of the peopling of America

· 358

CHAPTER XXI.

Return to Santo Domingo, The birds of Chontales—The insects

of Chontales-Mimetic forms—Departure from the mines-

Nicaragua as a field for emigration-Journey to Greytown-

Return to England

· 374

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MACHINERY OF CHONTALES GOLD-MINING COMPANY
SECTION OF MINE SHOWING METHOD OF EXTRACTING THE

ORE.

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SECTION OF SAN ANTONIO LODE
HUMMING-BIRDS (Florisuga mellivora, Linn.)
TONGUES OF HUMMING-BIRD AND WOODPECKER
PITCHER-FLOWER (Marcgravia nepenthoides)
FLOWER OF THE “PALOSABRE”
ADVENTURE WITH A JAGUAR
PEÑA BLANCA

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SKETCH MAP OF NICARAGUA

at the end.

THE

NATURALIST IN NICARAGUA.

CHAPTER 1.

Arrival at Greytown — The river San Juan-Silting up of the

harbour-Crossing the bar-Lives lost on it-Sharks—Christopher Columbus-Appearance of the town—Trade—Healthiness of the town and its probable cause- -Comparison between Greytown, Pernambuco, and Maceio-Wild fruits-Plants—Parrots, toucans, and tanagers—Butterflies and beetles-Mimetic forms - Alligators — Boy drowned at Blewfields by an alligatorTheir method of catching wild pigs.

At noon on the 15th February 1868, the R.M.S.S. Solent, in which I was a passenger, anchored off Greytown, or San Juan del Norte, the Atlantic port of Nicaragna in Central America. We lay about a mile from the shore, and saw a low flat coast stretching before us.

It was the delta of the river San Juan, into which flows the drainage of a great part of Nicaragua and Costa Rica, and which is the outlet for the waters of the great lake of Nicaragua. Its water-shed extends to within a few miles of the Pacific, for here the isthmus of Central America, as in the great continents to the north and south of it, sends off by far the largest portion of its drainage to the Atlantic. In the rainy season the San Juan is a noble river, and even in the dry

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