5 Reading 4-2 Experiments in sowing varieties of maize in uncultivated ground several years in succession would perhaps show a reversion to some common form which might then be considered as the original stock, but nothing of this kind has been attempted. The varieties have only been observed to lack stability in spite of their great diversity. As to the habitation of the unknown primitive form, the following considerations may enable us to guess it. Settled populations can only have been formed where nutritious species existed naturally in soil easy of cultivation. The potato, the sweet potato, and maize doubtless, ful f lled these conditions in America, and as the great populations of this part of the world existed f rst in the high grounds of Chili and Mexico, it is there probably that wild maize existed. We must not look for it in the low-lying regions such as Paraguay and the banks of the Amazon, or the hot districts of Guiana, Panama, and Mexico, since their inhabitants were formerly less numerous. Besides, forests are unfavorable to annuals, and maize does not thrive in the
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This note was uploaded on 11/18/2011 for the course HIST 302 taught by Professor Jensic during the Summer '10 term at Purdue.