Jalisco, a maritime state of Mexico, bordering on Sinaloa, Durango, Zacatecas, Guanajuato, Michoacan, Colima, and the Pacific; area, 48,967 sq. m.; pop, in 1869, 924,580. This state, which in colonial times was known as the kingdom of Nueva Galicia, is divided into the nine cantons of Guadalajara, Lagos, La Barca, Sayula, Etzatlan, Autlan, Tuscacuesco, Colotlan, and Tepic. Capital, Guadalajara. The face of the country is irregular, being traversed from S. to N. by the chain of the Sierra Madre, the principal mountains being those of Tapalpa and Tigre in Sayula, and in the south the Nevado and the Volcan de Colima, which last has an elevation of about 12,000 ft. above the sea. Deep and vast ravines abound in the mountainous portions. On either side of the Sierra Madre are beautiful valleys watered by numerous rivers, the largest of which, the Lerma or Rio Grande de Santiago, flows N. W. from Lake Chapala to the sea; but it rises in Lake Lerma in the state of Mexico, and has a length of 600 m. There are numerous cascades in its course, many of which are very picturesque.
Other rivers are the Verde, Lagos, Ameca, Ayuguila, San Pedro, Tepic, Acaponeta, Jerez, and Canas. Of the lakes, that of Chapala, 90 m. long and 10 to 35 m. wide, is the largest; Sayula and Magdalena, though smaller, are notable for the quantity of delicious fish which they contain; Mescalti-tan, little inferior in size to Chapala, is rather an arm of the sea than a lake. The climate is in general cold in Lagos, La Barca, and Colotlan, mild in Guadalajara and Etzatlan, and extremely hot and unhealthy in the coast region. The soil is fertile, the arboreal vegetation luxuriant, and the varieties of useful and precious timbers very great. Wheat and barley are abundantly produced, as are also maize, the beans called frijoles, capsicum, and garbanzos; and cotton, the sugar cane, cacao, and tobacco thrive well. The fruits include those of the torrid and temperate zones. Gold, silver, iron, mercury, and copper are found. Many of the gold and silver mines are now abandoned. Education is in a prosperous condition; there is a university in the capital, and schools in all the other towns.