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CARACAS.

305

[their Ures in the exercises of devotion, and they arc
tondof forming themselves into religious societies;
indeed there are few churclies that have not one or
two of these fraternities, composed entirely of en
franchised slaves. Every one has its uniform,
differing from the other only in colour.

23. University. — The education of the youth of
Caracas and ot the whole archbishopric is entirely
in a college and an university united together.
The foundation of the college preceded that of the
university by more than 60 years. This institu
tion originated in the piety and care of bishop A.
Gonzales de Acuna, who died in 16S2. At first
nothing was taught here but Latin, with the ad
dition of scholastic philosophy and theology. It
has now a reading and a writing school ; three Latin
schools, in one of which they profess rhetoric ;
two professors of philosophy, one of which is a lay
or secular priest, and the other a Dominican ; four
professors of theology, two for school divinity, one
for ethics, and another for positive divinity, the
last of which ought always to be a Dominican ; a
professor of civil law ; a professor of canon law ; a
professor of medicine. The university and col
lege of Caracas have only a capital of 47,748 dol
lars and 6\ reals, put out at interest, and produc
ing annually 2.387 dollars, 3| reals: this sum
pays the 12 professors. All the ranks of bachelor,
licentiate, and doctor, are granted at the univer
sity. The first is given by the rector, the two
others by the chancellor, who is also endowed with
the quality of schoolmaster. The oath of each
rank is to maintain the immaculate conception, not
to teach nor practise regicide or tyrannicide, and
to defend the doctrine of St. Thomas. In this col
lege and university there were, in 1802, 64 boarders,
and 402 students not boarders, viz.

In the lower classes, comprising rhetoric, 202

Philosophy - - . 140

Theology - - - 36

Canon and civil law - - 55

Physic - - - 11

la the school of sacred music - 22

466

24. Police . — The Spaniards of Caracas, of all
people in the world, stand least in need of a police
to preserve public tranquillity. Their natural so
briety, and more especially their phlegmatic dis
position, render quarrels and tumults very rare
among them. Here there is never any noise in the
streets ; every body in them is silent, dull, and
grave ; 300 or 400 people coming out of a

church make no more noise than a tortoise moving
along the sand. But if the magistrate has nothing

to fear from open crimes, he has so much the more
to apprehend from assassinations, thefts, frauds,
and treachery. The Spaniard is far from exempt
from that vindictive spirit, which is the more
dangerous as it seeks its revenge only in the
dark ; and from that rancour which veils itself
with the mask of friendship to procure an oppor
tunity of gratifying its vengeance. A person who
from his station and condition has no chance of
revenging himself, save by his own hands, exhi
bits very little or no passion when he receives the
offence ; but from that instant he watches the op
portunity, which he seldom suffers to escape him,
of plunging a poniard in the heart of his enemy.
The Spaniards from the province of Andalucia are
particularly branded with this criminal habit. We
are assured that these unfortunate events were un
known here before the year 1778, at which time
the liberty of trading with the province ofYene
zuela, which was belbre exclusively granted to the
company of Guipuscoa, was extended to all the
ports of Spain, and drew a number of Spaniards to
Caracas Irom every province, and particularly
from that of Andalucia. It is true that almost all
assassinations that happen at Caracas are perpe
trate by the Europeans : those that can be laid to
the charge of the Creoles are most rare. But all
the thefts are committed by the whites or pre
tended whites of the country, and the enfranchised
persons. False measures, false weights, changing
of commodities and provisions, are likewise fre
quent practices ; because they are looked upon
less as acts of dishonesty than as proofs of an ad
dress of which they are proud. HoAvever great
may be the occupation of the police, it is certain
many things call loudly upon their attention. It
will hardly be believed that the city of Caracas,
the capital of the province, and able to supply
horned cattle to all the foreign possessions in
America, is many days in the year itself in want
of butcher’s meat. The residence of a captain
general, the seat of an archbishop, of a royal audi
ence, and of the principal tribunals of appeal, with
a population of more than 40,000 souls, and, in
short, with a garrison of 1000 men, experience
famine in the midst of abundance. If filth does
not accumulate in the streets, it is owing t6 the
frequency of the rains, and not to the care of the
police ; for they are never washed but in honour
of some procession. Such streets as procession*
do not pass through are covered with an herb
like the weed on ponds, the pnnicum dactylum of
Linnaeus. Mendicity, which is in almost every
other country the province of the police, appears
to be unnoticed by it in Caracas. The streets arc]

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