n. d. Provisions are here very dear; flour at present sells at 40 dollars per barrel, potatoes are selling at 3d. per pound, shoes sell at 14s. per pair bespoke; ready made English shoes sell at 12s. per pair, there is a duty on them. Clothes are not so dear as I expected; silks are cheaper than in England. Wines are cheap although ale is very dear compared with home; it is all imported from England. Porter sells 2S. per bottle. Beef sells at the rate of 2s. 6d. for 25 lbs. Mutton sells at 3s. for a whole sheep. Peaches will shortly be plentiful as the summer has commenced. Cheese and butter sell at about 2S. per pound, occasionally varying. All kinds of cabinet work sell high. Card tables sell at £ 12 each'. By July 1824 he was rapidly losing patience, having had no word from his family and having seen nothing of sixty tons of coal ordered from Britain. He wrote home in savage terms complaining that their failure to send the coal had robbed him of more than £ 500 profit. Coal which had arrived as recently as May had sold at enormous prices but now it was too late. He concluded a bitter letter 'I am much too grieved at my misfortune in not receiving the coals to enquire about friends or acquaintances'. Thwarted for the time being in the commercial field, in October 1825 he took up the position of superintendant of an Academy which paid a salary of £ 120 a year exclusive of board and lodgings. Unfortunately, the clothes which he had brought with him from Wales were wearing out from the frequent washings necessary in the climate and in order to keep up appearances in his new position he was forced to buy new ones at some expense. In March 1826 he wrote home 'I have received your letter and may say without undue exaggeration of its contents, it is the first letter I ever received from my relatives which contained either the indication of kindly feeling or the expression of evident anxiety for my welfare'. Despite the frigidity of his tone, he was obviously hungry for news of Wales and his reply set the pattern of those to follow-long, rambling and verbose but with a command of words which was a tribute to his early education. To a rather disdainful enquiry from his sister about the ladies of Buenos Aires he replied with some spirit, 'It is true that females here arrive at maturity earlier and decline quicker than in the more northern regions of Europe, but that they lose all appearance of youth at 25 is unfounded. I could exhibit to you females-some the parents of a round dozen of brats-who retain not only some but much of the appearance of youth at 28 or 30; a female here is marriageable at 14 and at that age possesses the size and womanship of an English lady at 20'. In 1825, however, the long rivalry between Spaniards and Portuguese for possession of the Banda Oriental (now Uruguay) had broken out in war and for three years the Province of Buenos Aires stood virtually alone against the Brazilian Empire. Jones writing in March 1826 and again in the following September provided some first-hand impressions of the struggle and its effects on the Province. 'This city has been blockaded nearly three months by the Brazilian Squadron; everything is consequently much dearer and we may thank the cowardice of the enemy and the shallowness of the river Plate that we have not a few shots whistling about our ears. I had the pleasure on