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as to render it impracticable to cross them. In the
road they usually take lies the steep declivity of
San Antonio, extremely difficult to be passed.
The mules however are so well versed in the man
ner of letting themselves slide down it, that there
has never been an instance of these animals falling.
The 'vegetable productions of this province are
confined to bark, and from this no emolument is
derived, although it was discovered, after much
search and solicitude, by the Lieutenant-colonel
Don Miguel de Santistevan. It accordinglj'- pro
vides itself with all that it may require in this way
from the adjoining provinces of Riobamba and
Tacunga. It is of a very cold temperature, from
its being so near to the mountainous desert of
Chimborazo. Its natives amount to 2000 souls,
the greater part of them being Mustees, and the
■whole are divided into seven settlements, of which
the capital bears the same name ; and although
this was formerly the residence of the corregidor,
yet has it of late been deserted for the settlement
of Guaranda. The seven settlements are,
San Lorenzo, Guaranda,
CHIMBORAZO, a very
lofty mountain or desert of the cordillera of the
province and corregimiento of Riobamba, in the
kingdom of Quito; which, in the language of
the country, signifies mountain of the other side.
It is covered with everlasting snow, and is the
loftiest mountain in the known world, since its
height, taken by the academicians of the sciences
of Paris, is 3220 toises from the level of the sea
to its top, which terminates in a cone or truncated
pyramid. Its sides are covered with a kind of
white sand or calcined earth with loose stones,
and a certain herb called pajon, which affords pas
ture for the cattle of the neighbouring estates.
The warm streams flowing from its n. side should
seem toAvarrantthe idea that within it is a volcano.
From its top flow down many rivers, which take
different winding courses; thus the Guaranda
runs 5. the Guano s. e. and the Machala e. On
its skirt lies the road which" leads from Quito to
Guayaquil ; and in order to pass it in safety, it is
requisite to be more cautious in choosing the proper
season than were the Spanish conquerors of this
province, who were here frozen to death. North
of the town of Riobamba, in lat. 1° 21' 18" s. ac
cording to the observations of M. La Condamine.
fThis mountain was visited, on the 23d of June
1797, by Humboldt; who with his party reached
its €. slope on that day, and planted their instru-
ments on a narrow ledge of porphyritie rock Avhich
projected from the vast field of unfathomcd snow.
A chasm, 500 feet wide, prevented their further
ascent. The air was reduced to half its usual
density, and felt intensely cold and piercing.
Respiration was laborious and blood oozed from
their eyes, their lips and their gums. They stood
on the highest spot ever trod by man. Its height,
ascertained from barometrical observation, was
3485 feet greater than the elevation attained in
1745 by Condamine, and 19,300 feet above the
level of the sea. From that extreme station, the
top of Chimborazo was found, by trigonometrical
measurement, to be 2140 feet still higher.
CHIMBUZA, a large lake of the province and
government of Barbacoas, of the kingdom of
Quito, to the s. w. of the river Patia, formed by a
narrow canal, through ■which the Avater of this
river enters, and so forms the same lake into a
sheet of water of an oblong figure, two leagues in
length, and half a league in breadth. This lake
has another narrow canal, through which the wa
ter issues, and re-unites itself with the same
CHIMICA, a small province of the government
of Santa Marta in the Nuevo Reyno de Gra
nada. It is almost as it were desert and aban
doned, notwithstanding that it produces a good
quantity of maize. The climate is hot and un
healthy ; and although it was formerly peopled by
the Chimicas Indians, none of these are now found
to reside here.
CHIMILAS, a barbarous nation of Indians of
the Nuevo Reyno de Granada, in the province of
Santa Marta. They inhabit the Avoods to the e.
of the large river Magdalena, go naked, and have
no fixed abodes. They are cruel and treacherous,
and are bounded by the nation of the Guaxiros.
CHIMIRAL, a river of the province and
corregimiento of Copiapo in the kingdom of Chile.
It rises in the SnoAvy sierra, runs w. and enters the
sea in the point of its name. It in many parts
runs in so inconsiderable a stream as frequently to
be in all appearance lost before it enters the sea.
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