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 form of a pear, which is very round except where the stalk grows, at which part it is most prominent.. Ptolemy, and the others who have written upon the globe, had no information respecting this part of the world, which was then unexplored: they only established their arguments with respect to their own hemisphere, which, as I have already said, is half of a perfect sphere. And, now that your Highnesses have commissioned me to make this voyage of discovery, the truths which I have stated are evidently proved. . . . I do not find, nor have ever found, any account by the Romans or Greeks, which fixes in a positive manner the site of the terrestrial paradise; neither have I seen it given in any mappe-monde,1 laid down from authentic sources. Some placed it in Ethiopia, at the sources of the Nile; but others, traversing all these countries, found neither the temperature, nor the altitude of the sun, correspond with their ideas respecting it; nor did it appear that the overwhelming waters of the deluge had been there. Some Pagans pretended to adduce arguments to establish that it was in the Fortunate Islands, now called the Canaries, &c. . . . I have already described my ideas concerning this hemisphere and its form; and I have no doubt, that if I could pass below the equinoctial line, after reaching the highest point of which I have spoken, I should find a much milder temperature, and a variation in the stars and in the water; not that I suppose that elevated point to be navigable, nor even that there is water there: indeed, I believe it is impossible to ascend thither, because I am convinced that it is the spot of
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