By the description of one house you have an idea of all the rest. You first come into a large court, on one side of which is the stable: you then enter a hall; on one side of that is a large room, about twenty feet wide, and near forty feet long: that side next the window is the estrado, which runs the whole length of the room. The estrado is a platform, raised about five or six inches above the fioor, and is covered with carpets and velvet cushions for the women to sit on, which they do, after the Moorish fashion, cross-legged. The chairs for the men are covered with printed leather. At the end of the estrado, there is an alcove, where the bed stands; and there is always a vast deal of the sheets hanging out, with a profusion of lace to them, and the same on the pillows. They have a false door to the alcove, which sometimes is very convenient. Besides, there are generally two other rooms, one within another, and the kitchen and other offices are detached from the house, either at one side, or at the end of the garden.
The ladies are fond of having their Mulatto female slaves dressed almost as well as themselves in every respect, excepting jewels, in which they indulge themselves to the utmost extravagance. Paraguay tea, which they call matte, as I mentioned before, is always drunk twice a day: this is brought upon a large silver salver, with four legs raised upon it, to receive a little cup made out of a small calabash or gourd, and tipped with silver. They put the herb first into this, and add what sugar they please, and a little orange juice; and then pour hot water on them, and drink it immediately through the conveyance of a long