Up to January 1891 the Conservative forces which overthrew Sir George Grey in 1879 controlled the country in effect though not always in name, and for ten years progressive legislation was confined to a mild experiment in offering crown lands on perpetual lease, with a right of purchase (1882), a still milder instalment of local option (1881) and an inoffensive Factories Act (1886).
They are a quiet and inoffensive folk, who dwell in stockaded encampments, and preserve their ancestral language and customs. For an account of early Indian civilization in Costa Rica, see Central America: Archaeology.
The latter are peaceable, inoffensive and abstemious.
Among the inoffensive species are counted the graceful green " tree snake," which pursues frogs, birds and lizards to the topmost branches of the forest; also several species of pythons, the commonest of which is known as the carpet snake.