Bush Negroes (Maroons), Suriname, ca. 1831


Pierre Jacques Benoit, Voyage a Surinam . . . cent dessins pris sur nature par l'auteur (Bruxelles, 1839), plate xlv, fig. 92. (Copy in the John Carter Brown Library at Brown University)


Benoit gives a lengthy discussion of the Bush Negroes or Maroons. This illustration shows a delegation, led by the granman. To his left is the major fiscal and to his right, the under captain granman; following the three leaders are the captains of all the villages (p. 59). Benoit (1782-1854), a Belgian artist, visited Suriname around 1831 and apparently stayed for several months. The 100 lithographs in his book (hand colored in the John Carter Brown copy), accompanied by textual descriptions of varying detail, are derived from drawings he made during his visit, which included time in Paramaribo, the capital, as well as trips into the interior visiting Maroons and Amerindians. Forty of his lithographs, with our translations from the French text, are shown on this website.


Benoit, Pierre Jacques

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