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the Tekrítís against the government, and on account of the present unsettled state of this part of the country. Fear of the Shammárs on the one side, and the 'Abeïd on the other, have prevented the townspeople from extending their cultivation to its usual limits, and the consequence is, the rich land lying between Tekrít and the Hamrín hills is now a perfect waste. The inhabitants are all Mohammedans, with the exception of one solitary Jew, who is on the staff of the governor, and whose life is not to be envied. To the question of “What have you in Tekrít?”— “ One barren date-tree and an infidel Jew," was the reply.
During the night I obtained a mer. alt. of a Scorpi, from which I determined the latitude to be 34° 35' 45" N.
Having got observations for regulating the chronometer, and despatched a messenger to Músul with letters to the Vice-Consul, and directions to communicate with Sufúk, to whom I addressed a complimentary epistle, we left Tekrít at 9h. 40m. A.M. A new pilot, or rather an old one (for I believe he is upwards of 70 years of age), was shipped as our guide above this place: in fact, he is the same individual who piloted the “ Euphrates” under Lynch seven years ago. He declared, after having been on board an hour, and witnessed the performance of the vessel against the current, that she could not pass the rapids, which the “ Euphrates” found a difficulty in ascending. Indeed, what he says will, I fear, prove true, for our progress to-day has been considerably slower than yesterday, and in many places amounted almost to a standstill. At 4h. 15m. P.M., having a long reach full of difficulties ahead, and no hope of passing them before night came on, we brought to an anchor in the only secure spot to be met with in this neighbourhood.
From Dúr the principal channels appear to be confined to the western part of the bed of the Tigris; but below that place the main body of the stream passes along the eastern cliffs. The lat. was determined this evening by a merid. alt. of Dùbhe 34° 41' 52", thus making our whole day's progress, of 61 hours' steaming, equal to 6' 7" of northing only.
Ilth.-At 6h. 14m. A.M. we weighed; but, in coasting, the stream caught our bow, and there not being room, from the narrowness of the channel, to bring the vessel's head up stream with the helm, we dropped an anchor in hope of checking her speed, but without effect, from the hardness of the bottom. We consequently drifted down a considerable distance before we could get her head round, and did not reach the place whence we started till 6h. 45m. The anchor, too, on heaving it up, was found to have lost its stock. The boats were sent with a party of men to track up while the vessel ascended the rapid, which she did with tolerable ease. We steamed up to a bluff point of the cliffs on the W. side of the river, called 'Abdul Kerím, from the tomb of an old Imám, now in ruins, standing on its summit. Hauled alongside the bank to wait for the boats, which came through an inlet or khaléj (channel). Observing a party of Shammár horsemen making towards the boats, we sent an armed detachment to prevent their molesting the trackers, on which they retreated. The boats having joined us at 9h. 20m., we steamed on. The river rose 16 inches between sunset and daylight, causing a greater rapidity in the current. It is hereabouts divided into many channels by well-wooded islands. 12h. 20m. we reached Kubar (tombs) on the left bank, near a high mound in the plain, and the first tamarisk grove met with N. of Baghdad. "The channel is very winding to Kaleh Abú Reyyásh.
At 4 P.M. the Kaleh bore W.; it is a ruined fort on the cliffs, with a fine plain, or háwi, extending eastwards from it. The edge of the river from Tekrít to Khán Kharnéinah is now entirely peopled by the Shammárs, and all communication between Tekrít and Múşúl is in consequence stopped. They have vast herds of camels and sheep, which are seen grazing with their beautiful horses on this rich plain, dotted here and there with black tents, affording a pleasing picture of pastoral life, did not the character of the tribe contrast sadly with its primitive habits..
At 5 P.m. brought to for the night near the Eastern bank. Our whole progress to-day, as deduced from the latitude determined by an altitude of Dùbhe to be 349 49' 43'', has been but 7' 51" Northwards. The river rose 3 inches during the night.
12th.—We left our anchorage at 6 a.m., and struggled hard against the rapid stream till 9, when we were opposed by a fall. The ascent of this, not 100 feet in extent, occupied us till 11h. 20m. It was only overcome at last by the aid of a South wind, and by sending our boats to track up in-shore. 12h. 30m. passed a ruined Khán named Kharnéïnah, situate under the cliffs on the W. side of the valley. These cliffs now diverge considerably more to the W., while those forming the Eastern boundary of the valley of the Tigris trend more to the E., leaving abrupt and broken angles at Kharnéïnah on the W., and at a point called Legleg Storks on the E. About 3 miles immediately N. of Legleg, the remains of the Nahr Háfí, or upper branch of Nahrawán is seen. It is said to have conveyed the waters of the Tigris under the cliffs through a tunnel, to the main branch at Kantarah el Resas; another small canal or feeder is situate about 2 miles S. of the same point. From the diverging points described above the country is more open, and undulates in gentle slopes to the foot of the Hamrín range. From Khán Kharnéinah the river is very winding, and is divided by numerous beautiful islands, covered with every species of wild plants, as well as tamarisks and
poplars, some of which have attained to a considerable size, and afford a precarious livelihood to the inhabitants of Tekrít, who carry the timber on rafts to Baghdad for sale.
After leaving Kharnéinah our progress was a little more rapid, owing to the fine southerly wind which continued till sunset, when we made fast for the night at an island about three miles below " el Fet-hah,” or the “opening,” where the Tigris breaks through the hills. The latitude here observed was 34° 56' 57", and the northern mouth of the Nahrawán bore N.E. I mile distant. The continuation of the Hamrin hills on the W. side of the Tigris, termed Jebel Mak-húl, is now end on, and bears N.N.W.JW. The eastern ridge, or that termed Jebel Hamin, extends from a little above this point S.-Eastwards, and is an incongruous heap of barren mounds, composed of sandstone and pebbles, without a blade of vegetation. Both the Hamrin and Jebel Mak-húl are of similar formation, and may be reckoned about 500 feet high at this spot, though their altitude decreases as they advance to the S.E. The rich plain at their base forms a pleasing contrast to their desolate summits. During the night the river fell 6 inches. Thermometer from 50° to 85° in the shade,
13th.—Left our station at 5h. 45m., and, not being favoured as yesterday with a S. wind, advanced at a snail's pace to our depôt of wood, which we reached at 7 A.M. It had been cut in a small tamarisk grove, just above the mouth of the Nahr Hafii, and covered in with branches, to prevent its being set on fire by the Arabs. Here we remained, writing and despatching answers to letters just received from Baghdad, till 9h. 30m., when we made a fresh start, but, as I had anticipated, with little or no success. Struggled hard against the stream, which here breaks through the hills with much force, till 11h. 20m., when we were brought to a stand-still, without any hopes of accomplishing our object; and, on considering that our success hitherto had been mainly attributable to fresh S.E. winds, while obstacles of a much more formidable nature than those hitherto encountered awaited us, besides the risk we ran of grounding and eventual detention, should the water fall after having risen to so great a height, I reluctantly determined to retrace my steps to Baghdad, and accordingly put the helm up. • The last day's journey has been through a rich country, covered with wild plants of almost every description ; undulating slopes of an emerald green, enamelled with flowers of every hue, are spread before the eye like a rich carpet at every turn of the stream; and nothing is wanting but the hand of man to turn such a profusion of nature's bountiful gifts to account. But all is a vast solitude. The silence is unbroken except by the rushing of the torrent past the time-worn cliffs, or
by the screeching of an owl awakened from his slumbers by the flap, flap, flap of our paddle-wheels. When Mr. Rich passed this spot, some twenty years ago, all was bustle and activity, Arab tribes were encamped upon the banks of the river, and the beautiful islands, rich in their spring-garments, were the abode of peaceful husbandmen. The ruthless Shammárs have since that time, through the feebleness of the Turkish government, spread devastation wherever they pitched their tents; and, thinned by the plague which assailed the Pashálik in 1841, the former inhabitants have been obliged to flee to the more secure districts in the neighbourhood of Kerkúk.
The rapidity with which we are now descending, after our hard struggle upwards, appears to gain fresh impetus every mile. Rocks and islands, steep cliffs and shingly banks, quickly succeed each other ; cattle, tents, and men are passed in a single hour, and the silent desolation of yesterday is exchanged for the noise and activity of a well-peopled country. The following table will show the rapidity with which we advanced :
Tekrit . . . . . . 3 20 thus descending in 3h. 50m. through a distance which had taken 30 hours in our passage upwards. Between 'Abd el Kerim and Kaleh Abú Reyyash a small stream or torrent falls into the Tigris on the left side. It is named Nahr Milh (Salt river), and is said to be of considerable size in the winter months, when swollen by the torrents from the Hamrín range.
14th.- Reached Sámarráh at 9h. 9m. A.M., and remained there during the day to make arrangements for sending our overplus fuel to Baghdád by rafts. In the evening I visited the Malawiyah, and from its summit obtained several bearings.
15th.- Left Sámarráh at 6h. 21m., and steamed down the river against a heavy S, wind, which in the reaches directly opposite to it raised the waters of the Tigris into a considerable swell.
Anchored off the gardens of Turumbah in a heavy squall of thunder, lightning, hail, and rain, at 6h. 20m. The next morning we took up our old berth at Baghdad, after passing through the bridge of boats.
From these observations it will be seen that the journey northward against the stream occupied 864 hours steaming, while the descent was performed in the short space of 19 hours.
I much regret the termination of our trip; for I had flattered myself that it might not only prove useful in a geographical sense, but be also both instructive and amusing. I had contemplated, Baghdad.
could I have only reached the neighbourhood of Músul, a visit to that town and the adjacent ruins of the Assyrian cities of Nineveh, Khorsábád, and Nimrud, as well as a minute examination of the interesting Al Hadhr, so graphically described by my friend Dr. Ross; and I feel the disappointment the more, as I have already been six years in this country without ever having had such an opportunity, my duties not permitting me to absent myself from the vessel for a length of time such as would be required to perform the journey by land from Baghdad.
The failure of this attempt is not to be attributed to any severe obstacles met with in the navigation of the Upper Tigris; for to a vessel possessing the power of those now running on the Thames, of an average speed of 10 knots per hour, such difficulties as the Nitocris experienced would be deemed of minor importance. The Nitocris, indeed, under the most favourable circumstances in still water, cannot exceed the speed of 8 knots per hour, having a wheel of 12 feet diameter only, and a short stroke of 30 inches. It can hardly, therefore, be deemed a inatter of surprise that she should have failed to contend against a stream of 6} geographical miles per hour, with occasional falls, when it is considered that she carried above one month's provisions and 18 tons of fuel, besides the guns, matériel, and men, on the present expedition.
When I left Baghdad I hoped for, but did not anticipate success. I am therefore not disappointed. We have at all events to congratulate ourselves on having ascended to the Hamrin, whereas our former journey, having the same objects in view, terminated at Dúr from an insufficiency of water,
The bearings throughout these notes are true, excepting where expressly mentioned by compass,
Bombay, 26th July, 1846.
11.-On the best Means of reaching the Pole.-By Adiniral
. [Read April 12tlı, 1847.] The vast aecumulation of ice--which covers the northern seas in immense fields, high hills, and small islands—subjects the navigator in these waters to incessant danger and anxiety : to struggle with the elements, to overcome obstacles, to be familiarized with dangers—all this is so habitual to the seaman, that he is sometimes even dull without it. The continual, uniform, and quiet navigation in the regions of the trade-winds excites in the sailor a desire for change : he encounters a squall with joy, welcomes even a storm in the seas beyond the tropics not without a certain