GRAN CHACO, an extensive region in the heart of South America, which stretches from 20° to 29° of S. lat., and belongs partly to Bolivia and partly to the Argentine Republic, the boundary between the two states coinciding with the parallel 2-2°. The area is estimated at about 425,000 square miles, or more than twice the area of -France, and the greater portion is still unexplored. It all belongs to the La Plata basin and in general terms may be described as a plain inclining towards the S.E. and watered by the Pilcomayo, the Vermejo, and other tributaries of the Paraguay. The northern portion, lying within the region of tropical rains, has a profusion of marshes and lakes, while the southern portion is ta, dry cactus-growing steppe, except in the neighbourhood of the rivers, which annually submerge large areas with the surplus water they bring from the north. The whole of the Gran Chaco is still in the hands of the Indians, who are just beginning to learn a little agriculture, - to grow pumpkins, water melons, and maize; but the richness and extent of its forests and pastures will certainly secure the country a prosperous future. It possesses more timber suitable for every purpose than the whole of Europe; it already exports large numbers of cattle to the neighbouring states ; and, according to Major Host, it will be able to furnish abundant supplies of petroleum. "At the foot of the western slope of the Santa Barbara range, 25 leagues from the confluence of the San Francisco river and the Vermejo, there is an extensive petroleum basin called the Laguna de la Brea de San Miguel del Rastro, capable of yielding 2000 gallons per day."
See Von Reden, " Die Staaten im Strom-Gebiet des La Plata," in Petermann's Nita., 1856; Petermann and Burmeister, Die Siid• wmerikanischen R'publiken, Argentina, kc., 1875 ; Major Host in Da Plata Nonalschrift, 1873.
GRA.ND'COMBE, a town of France, in the department of Gard and arrondissement of Alais, is situated on the Gardon, 35 miles N.W. of Nimes, In the neighbourhood there are very extensive coal-mines, and the town possesses manufactures of zinc, lead, and glass. The population in 1876 .was 5342.