The Voyage of the Beagle - Study Guide Chapter 4 Summary & Analysis

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Darwin sails with the Beagle from Maldonado to the principle river in the area, the Rio Negro, about 300 miles to the south. He finds the land to be parched and inhospitable as he travels 18 miles up the river to a small settlement known either as El Carmen or Patagones. Having come upon the ruins of a few ranches, he asks a local what happened and learns wild natives attacked and destroyed the ranches. The local man was involved in one of the attacks. He barely escaped alive. He attributes this to a small cannon that delivered grape shot, decimating the attacking hoard and turning it away. The local is sure a massacre would have otherwise taken place because the ranchers' ammunition had almost run out.

About fifteen miles from the settlement, Darwin explores a large salt lake. Two and one half miles long and one...

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This section contains 652 words
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