Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

The accuracy of the data both for the Clyde and Tweed, which I aseertained from two lines of levellings quite independent of each other, are checked by a phenomenon which it might not be uninteresting to record in this place.

Both i'ivers are very nearly at the same level near Biggar, Thiş very spot exhibits the remarkable phenomenon of a bifur. cation of the two rivers--a bifurcation which differs from other lærger(and more important) examples only so far as to depend -upon the state of water in the Clyde. I give the words of the

attentive angler who describes it :*_“It is a singular circum::stance that salmon and their fry have occasionally been taken i in the upper parts of the Clyde, above its loftiest fall, which, being 80 feet in height, it is utterly impossible for fish of any kind to surmount. The fact is accounted for in this way. After passing Tinto Hill, the bed of the Clyde approaches to a level with that of the Biggar Water, which is close at hand, and discharges itself into the Tweed. On the occasion of a large flood the two streams become connected, and the Clyde actually pours a portion of its waters into one of the tributaries of the Tweed, which is accessible to and frequented by salmon.”

V. The Dee.- We have already noticed at some length the fall of this river. The results for the Dee I have based upon levels ascertained by repeated barometrical measurements by Dr. Skene Keith and Dr. Dickie of Aberdeen, which have been kindly communicated to me by the latter. This gentleman also confirms my statements by his personal knowledge of the Dee—that it does not exhibit any cataract from its mouth up to the Linn.

The Fall of the Dee.

[blocks in formation]

Engl. M. Engl Ft. Feet. From source . . . . .

Aberdeen

4,060 To affluence of Garchary. .

4.3 1,984 | 482.8 Affluence of Guisachan.

3.0 1,640 | 114.7 Affluence of Geauly · · ·

5.0
1,294

69.2 Linn of Dee . . . . . .

3.0 1,190 34.g Ballater, Bridge . ..

26.4 780 15.6 Belwade, Bridge (not in maps).

(310) Banchory Tarnen (affluence of

Kincardine

26.0

172 23.4. Drumoak . .

Aberdeen. 7.21 90 11.4 Affluence of Coulter Burn .

3.8 1 60 7.9 Sea at Aberdeen . . . . .

8.8

6.8° Total length and fall =

87.5 4,060 * Stoddart's Angler's Companion for Scotland.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Fall of the Dee-Recapitulation.

103 The source of the Dee, rising between Ben MacDhui on the E. and Braeriach on the W., is 4060 feet high, and most probably it is the highest source in the United Kingdom. The highest spring on Ben Nevis is only 3602 feet, according to my barometrical measurements—that is, 766 feet below the top of the hill; another spring, on one of the highest hills of the Grampians, Ben Aulder, reaches a height of 3650 feet.

The Fall of the entire Jordan, according to Von Wildenbruch.

[blocks in formation]

Engl. M. Eng. Feet. Feet,
From Tell el Kady, source?. .

+537:1
To Bahr el Hûleh,* entrance . .

9.0 + 100.0 48.6
„ issue . . . . 4:0
Brilge of the Sons of Jacob . .

2:
51

+ 89.9
Lake of Tiberias, entrance . . 8.01 - 845.5 116.9
issue . . .

14.0
The Dead Sea ......

80.0 1 - 1446.3 7.5 Total length and fall = 117.5 1983.4 The spring of Tell-el-Kady forms in the preceding table the source of the Jordan; it is taken as such by the natives. The ancients give the name of the source to the spring which issues from the Cave of Panias; the latter is, however, only 2 miles longer than the former, which it receives 7 miles below its

the original fountain of the Jordan has been assigned-indeed its birth-place has been almost as much contested as that of Homer.

There is a considerable fall of the Jordan between the Lake Hûleh, or more correctly the Bridge of Jacob, and the Lake of

Tiberias; viz., a fall of 116.9 feet per mile. This rate of fall, without cataracts, would certainly exhibit a “ remarkable phenomenon ;" but Von Wildenbruch expressly mentions that

from Jacob's Bridge the Jordan forms a continuous waterfall."

The above data are part of the results of laborious researches into the physical and statistical geography of the British Isles, which I hope ere long to lay before the public in a series of maps. However dry such tables may appear, they nevertheless form the only sound basis for the knowledge of physical geography; and it was only the want, or deficiency, of such

* I computed Bahr el Hûleh to be about 10 feet higher than Jacob's Bridge; Von Wildenbruch did not measure its level, but he says that the Jordan between the two points is almost stagnant: thus a fall of 10 feet for 2.5 miles will be fully enough. The difference between Bahr el Hûleh and the Lake of Tiberias, thus implied, agree satisfactorily with other barometrical measurements.

hydrographical facts that made us until now consider the fall of the Jordan as an unusual phenomenon. [NOTE.-The heights for the Shannon are taken from the Ordnance Maps, except those

of Castle Connel and Castle Troy, which are calculated from data given in Fraser's Handbook ; those for the Thames are derived from Bradshaw's Maps of Canals of the Southern and Midland Counties, and those for the Clyde are chiefly taken from Railway Plans. For the Tweed, the height of source is determined by barometrical observation (Fullarton), and the other altitudes from Railway Plans. In the accompanying diagram I have added a section to show the whole extent of the depression of the Jordan valley. It will be observed that the southern slope is much steeper than the northern, which reaches the level of the Mediterranean at a point about 1 mile below Jacob's Bridge (101 Eng. miles from the Dead Sea), while in the Wady el Arabah the same level is attained at a distance of only about 44 miles from the Dead Sea.* Thus I compute the wbole length of the depression at 190 Eng. miles-northern slope 101, Dead Sea 45, southern slope 44.]

X.Expedition to the Jordan and the Dead Sea. By Lieut.

Molyneux, of H.M.S. Spartan.

[Read March 27, 1848.) AFTER a very tedious passage from Beirout, Her Majesty's ship Spartan anchored off the town of Caiffa, at the southern side of the bay of Acre, and we immediately commenced putting into execution our project of carrying the ship's dingy, or smallest boat, overland to Tiberias; from thence to take her down the river Jordan to the Dead Sea; and, after a few days spent in exploring those interesting regions, to convey her back to the ship by way of Jerusalem and Jaffa. Our objects were to examine the course of the Jordan, as well as of the valley through which it runs, and specially to measure the depth of the Dead Sea. Captain Symonds, being anxious that the above views should if possible be carried out, did everything in his power to promote and further them; and as I was equally anxious to endeavour to fulfil his wishes, I was only too glad to volunteer my services for the purpose. Having therefore secured three good volunteer seamen from the ship (Grant, Lyscomb, and Winter), and having received every assistance from my messmates, by 3 P.m. on the 20th of August, 1847, all was prepared and ready for a start. We had brought Toby from Beirout to act as a dragoman, along with his two horses, tent, and canteen, which, with provisions, arms, and other requisites, were hoisted into one of the boom-boats; and at 4P.M.we shoved off from the ship with the dingy in tow. We made sail for Acre, at the opposite side of the bay, and 2 hours brought us under its walls, most of which have been built anew since the bombardment in 1840. We landed all the things and pitched our tent in the sand within a few yards

* Petermann's Map of Lower Egypt, Sinai, and Arabia Petræa, in Dr. Beard's *People's Dictionary of the Bible.'

[blocks in formation]

of the sea. The captain had provided me with a letter from the pasha, and another for the consul at Jerusalem; and, with the promised assistance of our worthy vice-consul, I lay down in hopes of being able to make a prosperous departure in the morning. The night was lovely, and the sea-air deliciously cool.*

Saturday, August 21.st.—Mr. Finzi, the vice-consul, had provided us with four good camels for boat and baggage, and three horses for the men. After breakfast and the altercations and harangues which unavoidably attend all dealings with the Arabs, we succeeded in making a start at 9 A.M., mounted on two fine camels– having previously sent on the little boat, so that she got considerably ahead while we were employed in striking the tent. The road was remarkably good'; for the first two hours a four-in-hand might have been comfortably driven along it. The plain through which it passed appeared well cultivated, being almost entirely covered with the stubble of Indian corn. At llh. 25m. A.M. we turned aside a little to the right, to avoid a small insulated mound, at the foot of which there was a well of good water; and there we enjoyed the first growls of the Arabs in charge of the camels, for, as we came to a slight ascent, so they began to make a greater noise in proportion. The hindermost camel with the boat came to his knees, but recovered himself well. 12h. 40m. P.M., got through an awkward pass, and came in sight of the village Abilin, which we left to the right, and proceeded down the valley of Shefat 'Amar. At 2h. 30m., the same camel having again come to the ground and commenced roaring, we exchanged him for one of the others. The hills around us were covered, as is generally the case in Syria, with rocks and short stunted trees; but here and there strips were cultivated in the bottoms of the valleys; and here the road dwindled into a mere footpath. At 3h. 50m., descending from a low range of hills, we reached a well called Bir-el-Bteder, and the ruins of a khan of the same name. The soil here appeared excellent, judging from the small specimens of cultivation visible, but covered with thistles. The Nazareth road here branched off to the right, passing through the village of Sefurieh, where there appeared to be some large buildings. At 7 we reached the village of Turan, and having journeyed 10 hours almost without cessation, pitched our tent in one of the large, open threshing-floors, which appear to be the common property of the inhabitants, and are almost invariably to be met with in the neighbourhood of the villages.t

* 10 P.M., Therm. 72o. † 11h. 50m. P.m., Therm. in tent 73o.

Sunday, 22nd.Left our encampment at Turan at 8h. 15m. A.M., the road following the foot of the hills which bound the valley of Lubieh; the direction being about east. The sun in the early part of the day was hot, but being occasionally obscured by clouds, and tempered with a light fresh air, it was far from intolerable. At Turan, as many doves were flying about near the tent, we succeeded in bagging three of them, much to the amusement of the villagers and to the improvement of the pot. At 9h. 30m. we passed Mount Tabor, leaving it to the right, and half an hour afterwards the village of Liblieh also to the right; Mount Tabor appearing to be an insulated hill of a rounded form, something resembling an inverted basin, but of no great height. The mountains on either side of the valley of the Jordan were now visible, and the gap between them, running nearly N. and S., pointed out the direction of our future course. A portion of the land appeared to be cultivated, but the hills looked barren and arid in the extreme. Passed some very large herds of camels which were quietly grazing, the property of a Bedouin tribe in the neighbourhood.

At Ilh. 30m. arrived at the top of the last ridge of hills overlooking the lake of Tiberias and the valley of the Jordan, and enjoyed a most magnificent view. Jebel Sheikh, smothered in clouds, was distinctly seen, bearing N.N.E. (by compass); before us were the blue waters of Tiberias, surrounded by fine ranges of hills; to the left the white ruins of Safed, perched on a hill; and near the northern end of the lake a gap in the mountains, with a green patch, which pointed out the spot where the Jordan discharges its waters into Tiberias, as well as the ruins of an ancient town, which stand at a short distance from its embouchure.

At 12h. 50m. a great crisis took place. We had experienced some difficulty in descending the upper part of the hills above Tiberias, but by degrees the road became so steep, that we were obliged to hold up the boat by ropes, till at length we arrived at a point beyond which the camels could not proceed, and to return was impossible; the stones, when started, rolled to the bottom; the camels began to roar; then followed the usual trembling of the legs,—the certain precursor of a fall; and, in short, to save the boat, it became necessary to cut the lashings and let her slide down on her keel to the foot of the hill. There we again harnessed the unfortunate camels, and proceeded without further mishap to Tiberias, where we arrived at lh. 50m. P.m, and passing under the walls of the town, we pitched our tent within a few yards of

« AnteriorContinuar »