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Thomas Falkner (1707-84), one-time pupil of both Richard Mead and Isaac Newton, was an English Jesuit missionary who lived for nearly forty years in South America until 1767, when he returned to England following the Jesuits' expulsion from Cordoba. Originally published in 1774 in the hope that it 'might be of some public utility, and might also afford some amusement to the curious', this is a first-hand description of Patagonia, believed to have been consulted by Charles Darwin on board the Beagle. Illustrated with a map drawn from the author's knowledge and experience, it is an account of the dramatic physical geography of the area as well as the customs, beliefs and language of its inhabitants. Falkner's narrative ranges from a discussion of the virtues of American tea (in certain particulars 'far excelling the tea of China') to a detailed depiction of the role of wizards and rituals involving demons.