Page:The Present State of Peru.djvu/75

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53
ANTHROPOLOGY.

covered in Tarija, which weighs a pound and a half[1]: consequently, the mummy from which it was extracted must have possessed a much greater bulk than the skeleton dug up by Habicot, who asserts that it measured in length twenty-five feet and a half[2]. Perhaps the Patagonians who have been

described,


  1. The very respectable person who was originally possessed of the above-mentioned tooth, and whose veracity cannot be called in question, has assured us, that the body from which it was extracted, was conveyed, at a great expence, and with infinite care, from Tarija to Cusco, by the Marquis of Valle-Umbroso, who caused it to be shipped for Madrid; but that it was intercepted on the passage by the English, by whom it was conveyed to London. If, perchance, the Peruvian Mercury should reach that Capital, we request to know, through the medium of the Philosophical Transactions, whether the giant thus intercepted wants the tooth in question. Father Francisco Gonzales Laguna possessed a tooth of the same kind, brought from the above province of Tarija, which weighed more than five pounds, notwithstanding several portions of the fangs had been broken off. It was sent to the cabinet of Madrid.

    As the spots of South America in which these relics are found are level grounds, and as they have not hitherto been discovered in the more elevated and mountainous parts of Peru, the opinion of Haller, that those who inhabit the plains are of larger stature than those by whom the mountains are peopled, seems to be confirmed. It may be urged, however, that these are not the remains of rational, but of irrational creatures, not terrestrial, there being no records of any such, of enormous bulk, before the conquest of Peru by the Spaniards, but marine, as they were left by the universal deluge. Consenting, in the first instance, to this opinion, wc shall proceed to ask, why these skeletons arc not found in the deep cavities of the mountainous territory, where it is more natural to suppose that the bodies would have been deposited, to perish and decay, on the retirement of the waters?

  2. Daubenton, in controverting the relation of Habicot, principally founds his objedlions on the disproportion of the limbs of the giant described by the latter. For instance, to a height of twenty-five feet and a half, he allows a breadth of ten feet to the shoulders. "An unheard-of disproportion," observes Daubenton: "a human skeleton of five feet in height, has not a breadth of more than thirteen inches; con-.

sequently