Page images
PDF
EPUB

as

nose.

with a bill or beak, which is not, like that of a bird, affixed | fishes of the same genera as exist in the southern parts to the skeleton, but is merely attached to the skin and of Asia and Africa. Of those peculiar to Australian waters muscles.

may be mentioned the arripis, represented by what is called Australia has no apes, monkeys, or baboons, and no rumi- among the colonists a salmon trout. A very fine freshnant beasts. The comparatively few indigenous placental water fish is the Murray cod, which sometimes weighs 100 mammals, besides the dingo, or wild dog—which, however, ib; and the golden perch, found in the same river, has rare may have come from the islands north of this continent, beauty of colour. Among the sea fish, the snapper is of are of the bat tribe and of the rodent or rat tribe. There are great value as an article of food, and its weight comes up four species of large fruit-eating bats, called Aying foxes, to 50 fb. This is the Pagrus unicolor, of the family of twenty of insect-eating bats, above twenty of land-rats, and Sparidæ, which includes also the bream. Its colours are five of water-rats. The sea produces three different seals, beautiful, pink and red with a silvery gloss, but the male which often ascend rivers from the coast, and can live in it

grows old takes on a singular deformity of the head, lagoons of fresh water; many cetaceans, besides the "right with a swelling in the shape of a monstrous human-like whale" and sperm whale ; and the dugong, found on the These fish are caught in numbers outside Port northern shores, which yields a valuable medicinal oil. Jackson for the Sydney market. Two species of mackerel,

The birds of Australia in their number and variety of differing somewhat from the European species, are also species (reckoned at 690) may be deemed some compensa- caught on the coasts. The so-called red garnet, a pretty tion for its poverty of mammals; yet it will not stand com- fish, with hues of carmine and blue stripes on its head, is parison in this respect with regions of Africa and South much esteemed for the table. The Trigla polyommata, or America in the same latitudes. The black swan of West flying garnet, is a greater beauty, with its body of crimson Australia was thought remarkable when discovered as and silver, and its large pectoral fins, spread like wings, of belying an old Latin proverb. There is also a white eagle. a rich green, bordered with purple, and relieved by a black The vulture is wanting. Sixty species of parrots, some of and white spot. Whiting, mullet, gar-fish, rock cod, and them very handsome, are found in Australia. The emu, a many others known by local names, are in the lists of large bird of the order Cursores, or runners, corresponds edible fishes belonging to New South Wales and Victoria. with the African and Arabian ostrich, the rhea of South Much interesting and valuable information upon

Australian America, and the cassowary of the Moluccas and New zoology will be found in a recent essay by Mr Gerard Krefft, Guinea. In New Zealand this order is represented by the curator and secretary of the museum at Sydney, and in apteryx, as it formerly was by the gigantic moa, the remains the Count de Castelnau's report on the fishes of Victoria of which have been found likewise in Queensland. Of the at the International Exhibition of 1873. same species as the birds of paradise is the graceful Mænura Aborigines.—The Papuan, Melanesian, or Australasian superba, or lyre bird, with its tail feathers spread in the aborigines exhibit certain peculiarities which are not found shape of a lyre. The mound-raising megapodes, the bower in the African negro, to which race they otherwise present building satin-birds, and several others, display peculiar some similarity. In the Australasian the forehead is habits. The honey-eaters present a great diversity of higher, the under jaw less projecting, the nose, though plumage. There are also many kinds of game birds, flat and extended compared with that of the European, is pigeons, ducks, geese, plovers, and quails.

less depressed than in the African. His lips are thick, but The ornithology of New South Wales and Queensland not protuberant; and the eyes are sunken, large, and black. is more varied and interesting than that of the other pro- The colour of his skin is lighter—of a dusky hue—than vinces.

that of the Negro. In stature he equals the average As for reptiles, Australia has a few tortoises, all of one European, but tall men are rare, except in North Queensfamily, and not of great size. The "leathery turtle,” land, his body and linibs are well shaped, strongly jointed, which is herbivorous, and yields abundance of oil, has been and highly muscular. The hind parts are not, as in the caught at sea off the Illawarra coast so large as 9 feet in African, excessively raised; and while the calf of the leg length. The saurians or lizards are numerous, chiefly on is deficient, the heel is straight. The natives of Papua have dry sandy or rocky ground in the tropical region. The woolly spirally-twisted hair. Those of Tasmania, now extergreat crocodile of Queensland is 30 feet long; there is a minated, had the same peculiarity. But the natives of the smaller one, 6 feet long, to be met with in the shallow Australian continent have straight or curly black hair. lagoons of the interior. The monitor, or fork-tongued The men wear short beards and whiskers. lizard, which burrows in the earth, climbs, and swims, is Their mental faculties, though probably inferior to those said to grow to a length of 8 or 9 feet. This species, and of the Polynesian copper-coloured race, are not contemptible. many others, do not extend to Tasmania. There are about They have much acuteness of perception for the relations twenty kinds of night-lizards, and many which hibernate. of individual objects, but little power of generalisation. One species can utter a cry when pained or alarmed, and No word exists in their language for the general terms the tall-standing frilled lizard can lift its forelegs, and tree, bird, or fish; yet they have invented a name for squat or hop like a kangaroo. There is also the Moloch every species of vegetable and animal they know. The horridus of South and West Australia, covered with tuber- grammatical structure of some North Australian languages cles bearing large spines, which give it a very strange has a considerable degree of refinement. The verb presents aspect. This and some other lizards have power to change a variety of conjugations, expressing nearly all the moods their colour, not only from light to dark, but in some parts and tenses of the Greek. There is a dual, as well as a from yellow to grey or red. Dr Gray, of the British plural form in the declension of verbs, nouns, pronouns, Museum, has described fifty species of Australian lizard. and adjectives. The distinction of genders is not marked, The snakes are reckoned at sixty-three species, of which except in proper names of men and women.

All parts of forty-two are venomous, but only five dangerous. North speech, except adverbs, are declined by terminational inflecQueensland has many harmless pythons. There are forty tions. There are words for the elementary numbers, one, or fifty different sorts of frogs; the commonest is distin- | two, three; but “four” is usually expressed by “twoguished by its blue legs and bronze or gold back; the two;" then "five" by “two-three,” and so on. They largest is bright green ; while the tree-frog has a loud shrill have no idea of decimals. The number and diversity voice, always heard during rain.

of separate languages, not mere dialects, is truly bewilderThe Australian seas and rivers are inhabited by many | ing. "Tribes of a few hundred people, living within a few

miles of each other, have often scarcely a phrase in com part, are either bowers, formed of the branches of trees, mon. This is more especially observed in New South or hovels of piled logs, loosely covered with grass or bark, Wales, a country much intersected by dividing mountain which they can erect in an hour, wherever they encamp. ranges. But one language is spoken all along the Rivers But some huts of a more commodious and substantial form Murray and Darling, while the next neighbours of the were seen by Flinders on the south-east coast in 1799, Murray tribes, on both sides, are unable to converse with and by Captain King and Sir J. Mitchell on the north-east, them.

where they no longer appear. The ingenuity of the race It is, nevertheless, tolerably certain that all the natives is mostly to be recognised in the manufacture of their of Australia belong to one stock. There appears reason weapons of warfare and the chase. While the use of the to believe that their progenitors originally landed on bow and arrow does not seem to have occurred to them, the north-west coast, that of Cambridge Gulf or Arnhem the spear and axe are in general use, commonly made of Land, in canoes drifting from the island of Timor. They hard-wood; the hatchets of stone, and the javelins pointed seem then to have advanced over the continent in three with stone or bone. The peculiar weapon of the Australian separate directions. By one route they moved, in the is the boomerang, a curved blade of wood, of such remarkcourse of ages, directly across to the south coast, near the able construction, that it swerves from its direct course, head of the Great Bight, Spencer Gulf, and the Gulf of sometimes returning so as to hit an object behind the St Vincent. Another division followed the west coast to thrower. Their nets, made by women, either of the tenSwan River, and round by King George's Sound. The dons of animals or the fibres of plants, will catch and hold third and most important body, turning eastward, crossed the strong kangaroo or the emu, or the very large fish of the head of the Gulf of Carpentaria, then split and sub- Australian rivers. Canoes of bent bark, for the inland divided itself amidst the rivers and highland ranges of waters, are hastily prepared at need; but the inlets and Queensland, while some of its tribes crossing the Upper straits of the north-eastern sea-coast are navigated by larger Darling occupied New South Wales, overspread the canoes and rafts of a better construction. Riverina, and peopled the south-eastern quarter of Aus Without claiming permanent ownership of the land, each tralia. The proofs and arguments upon which this hypo- native tribe was accustomed, till the English squatter came, thetical distribution is based are set forth by Mr Eyre in to enjoy the recognised manorial dominion of its own his interesting essay on the Australian aborigines (Dis hunting-ground, perhaps ten or twelve miles square. This coveries in Central Australia, &c., by E. J. Eyre, resident was subdivided between the chief heads of families. The magistrate, Murray River, vol. ii.) It is chiefly the pre- affairs of a tribe are ruled by a council of the men past valence of some peculiar customs, such as circumcision, or middle age who are still in full vigour of mind and body. the removal of two upper-jaw teeth at a stated age of One may be their president, but they have no hereditary adolescence, that seems to mark the common descent of prince. Their most solemn assemblies take place when the tribes, now widely distant in location, which appear to youth undergo one or other of the painful ceremonies of inihave belonged to one of the supposed main streams of tiation into manhood. In every case of death from disease population. The discontinuance of such customs among or unknown causes the sorcerers hold a public inquest, and the tribes of the other main divisions is plausibly ascribed to pretend to ask the corpse how it was killed. Such deaths are local influences. From a comparison of their languages, invariably inscribed to witchcraft practised by a hostile the diversities of which have been already referred to, it or envious neighbouring tribe. The bodies of the slain in appears that little aid is to be expected from them in ethno- battle are sometimes eaten, or the fat of the kidneys, at logical grouping.

least, is extracted for a feast of victory. But cannibalism The natives of the north-eastern quarter-a tropical in Australia is not confined to the flesh of enemies, nor is region of diversified surface, with many rivers and thick it generally associated with an insulting triumph. It is forests, as well as open highlands-are far superior in body, rather, like that reported of the ancient Scythians, a rite mind, and social habits to those of the rest of Australia. of funeral observance, in honour of deceased kindred and They bear, in fact, most resemblance to their neighbours friends. The reality of this custom is proved by the testiand kindred in the island of New Guinea, but are still mony of trustworthy English witnesses, who have watched below these in many important respects.

the revolting act. The only idea of a god known to be enterIf a general view be taken of the tribes of Australia, and tained by these people, is that of Buddai, a gigantic old man the state in which they existed independently of recent Euro- lying asleep for ages, with his head resting upon his arm, pean intercourse, two or three extraordinary defects exhibit which is deep in the sand. He is expected one day to themselves. They never, in any situation, cultivated the awake and eat up the world. They have no religion beyond soil for any kind of food-crop. They never reared any those gloomy dreams. Their notions of duty relate mostly kind of cattle, or kept any domesticated animal except the to neighbourly service and social interest; and they are not dog, which probably came over with them in their canoes. all thieves or liars, but are capable of many good deeds. The They have nowhere built permanent dwellings, but con- marriage bond is observed by the wife or wives, the penalty tented themselves with mere hovels for temporary shelter. of its violation being death. But chastity upon any other They have neither manufactured nor possessed any chattels account is a virtue beyond the native conception, though a beyond such articles of clothing, weapons, ornaments, and certain delicacy of feeling in matters of sex is not unknown. utensils as they might carry on their persons, or in the The deplorable lack of moral restraint has involved this family store-bag for daily use. Their want of ingenuity unhappy race in sufferings which may be easily underand contrivance has, however, undoubtedly been promoted stood, from their contact with the more reckless and by the natural poverty of the land in which the race settled. vicious representatives of foreign nations.

The sole dress of both sexes in their aboriginal state is The numbers of the native Australians are steadily a cloak of skin or matting, fastened with a skewer, but diminishing. A remnant of the race exists in each of the open on the right-hand side. No headgear is worn, except provinces, while a few tribes still wander over the interior. sometimes a net to confine the hair, a bunch of feathers, or Altogether it is computed that not more than about 80,000 the tails of small animals. The bosom or back is usually aborigines remain on the continent. tattoed, or rather scored with rows of hideous raised scars, Perhaps the most complete and trustworthy informaproduced by deep gashes at the age when youth comes to tion on the Australian race is to be found in works pubmanhood or womanhood. Their dwellings, for the most lished some twenty or thirty years ago, before the country

III.

- 15

114
A U STRÁLIA

[COLONIAL HISTORY. was occupied as it now is by the European settler. Mr | Geelong and Portland, reaching 12,850; while its import Eyre's work above referred to, and Captain (afterwards trade amounted to £204,000, and its exports to £138,000. Sir George) Grey's Discoveries in North-West and Western Such was the growth of infant Victoria in five years; Australia, are authorities that may be relied upon.

that of Adelaide or South Australia, in the same period, Colonial History.Of the five Australian provinces, was nearly equal to it. At Melbourne there was a deputy that of New South Wales may be reckoned the oldest. governor, Mr Latrobe, under Sir George Gipps at Sydney. It was in 1788, eighteen years after Captain Cook explored | Adelaide had its own governors, first Captain Hindmarsh, the east coast, that Port Jackson was founded as a penal next Colonel Gawler, and then Captain George Grey. station for criminals from England; and the settlement Western Australia progressed but slowly, with less than retained that character, more or less, during the subsequent 4000 inhabitants altogether, under Governors Stirling and fifty years, transportation being virtually suspended in Hutt. 1839. The colony, however, from 1821 had made a fair The general advancement of Australia, to the era of the start in free industrial progress.

gold-mining, had been satisfactory, in spite of a severe By this time, too, several of the other provinces had commercial crisis, from 1841 to 1843, caused by extravacome into existence. Van Diemen's Land, now called gant land speculations and inflated prices. Victoria proTasmania, had been occupied as early as 1803. It was an duced already more wool than New South Wales, the auxiliary penal station under New South Wales, till in aggregate produce of Australia in 1852 being 45,000,000 1825 it became a separate province. From this island, Ib; and South Australia, between 1842 and this date, had ten years later, parties crossed Bass's Straits to Port Phillip, opened most valuable mines of copper. The population of where a new settlement was shortly established, forming New South Wales in 1851 was 190,000; that of Victoria, till 1851 a part of New South Wales, but now the richer 77,000; and that of South Australia about the same. and more populous colony of Victoria. In 1827 and 1829, At Summerhill Creek, 20 miles north of Bathurst, in an English company endeavoured to plant a settlement at the Macquarie plains, gold was discovered, in February the Swan River, and this, added to a small convict station 1851, by Mr E. Hargraves, a gold-miner from California. established in 1825 at King George's Sound, constituted The intelligence was made known in April or May; and Western Australia. On the shores of the Gulf St Vincent, then began a rush of thousands,—men leaving their former again, from 1835 to 1837, South Australia was created by employments in the bush or in the towns to search for the another joint-stock company, as an experiment in the Wake ore so greatly coveted in all ages. In August it was field scheme of colonisation.

found at Anderson's Creek, near Melbourne ; a few weeks Such were the political component parts of British later the great Ballarat gold-field, 80 miles west of that Australia up to 1839. The earlier history, therefore, of city, was opened; and after that, Bendigo, now called New South Wales is peculiar to itself. Unlike the other Sandhurst, to the north. Not only in these lucky promainland provinces, it was at first held and used chiefly vinces, New South Wales and Victoria, where the aurifor the reception of British convicts. When that system ferous deposits were revealed, but in every British colony was abolished, the social conditions of New South Wales, of Australasia, all ordinary industry was left for the one Victoria, and South Australia became more equal. Pre-exciting pursuit. The copper mines of South Australia vious to the gold discoveries of 1851 they may be included, were for the time deserted, while Tasmania and New Zeafrom 1839, in a general summary view.

land lost many inhabitants, who emigrated to the more The first British governors at Sydney, from 1788, ruled promising country. The disturbance of social, industrial, with despotic power. They were naval or military officers and commercial affairs, during the first two or three

years in command of the garrison, the convicts, and the few free of the gold era, was very great. Immigrants from Europe, settlers The duty was performed by such men as Captain and to some extent from North America and China, poured Arthur Phillip, Captain Hunter, and others. In the into Melbourne, where the arrivals in 1852 averaged 2000 twelve years' rule of General Macquarie, closing with 1821, persons in a week. The population of Victoria was doubled the colony made a substantial advance. By means of con in the first twelvemonth of the gold fever, and the value of vict labour roads and bridges were constructed, and a imports and exports was multiplied tenfold between 1851 route opened into the interior beyond the Blue Mountains. and 1853. A population of 30,000, three-fourths of them convicts, The colony of Victoria was constituted a separate proformed the infant commonwealth, whose attention was vince in July 1851, Mr Latrobe being appointed governor, soon directed to the profitable trade of rearing fine wool followed by Sir Charles Hotham and Sir Henry Barkly sheep, first commenced by Mr John M‘Arthur in 1803. in succession. The more rapid increase of Victoria since

During the next ten years, 1821-31, Sir Thomas Bris- that time, in wealth and number of inhabitants, has gained bane and Sir Ralph Darling, two generals of the army, it a pre-eminence in the esteem of emigrants; but the being successively governors, the colony increased, and varied resources of New South Wales, and its greater extent eventually succeeded in obtaining the advantages of a of territory, may in some degree tend to redress the balance, representative institution, by means of a legislative council. if not to restore the character of superior importance to the Then came General Sir Richard Bourke, whose wise and older colony. liberal administi tion proved most beneficial. New South The separation of the northern part of eastern Australia, Wales became prosperous and attractive to emigrants with under the name of Queensland, from the original province of capital. Its enterprising ambition was encouraged by New South Wales, took place in 1859. At that time the taking fresh country north and south. In the latter direc- district contained about 25,000 inhabitants; and in the tion, explored by Mitchell in 1834 and 1836, lay Australia first six years (as Sir George Bowen, the first governor, Felix, now Victoria, including the well-watered, thickly- observed in 1865) its population was quadrupled and its wooded country of Gipps' Land.

trade trebled. This district, then called Port Phillip, in the time of It appears, from a general view of Australian progress in Governor Sir George Gipps, 1838 to 1846, was growing fast the last twenty years, that the provinces less rich in gold into a position claiming independence. Melbourne, which than Victoria have been enabled to advance in prosperity began with a few huts on the banks of the Yarra-Yarra by other means. Wool continues the great staple of Ausin 1835, was in 1840 a busy town of 6000 inhabitants, tralia. But New South Wales, possessing both coal and the population of the whole district, with the towns of iron, is becoming a seat of manufactures; while Queens

Estimated

Value of

Valuo of

tion at Close of

1873.

Revenue

of 1873.

Public
Debt on
Dec. 31,
1873.

for 1873.

for 1873.

land is also favoured with much mineral wealth, including tion of the provinces at a recent date, the following statis

The semi-tropical climate of the latter colony is suit- tics are appended :-
able for the culture of particular crops, needing only a
supply of other than European labour. Meantime South

Popula-
Name of Colony.

Imports Exports Australia, besides its production of copper and a fair share of wool, has become the great wheat-growing province of the continent.

The separate colonies of Australia are still in a somewhat transitional state, emigration being so continuous,

4,587,859

Queensland ......... and the country to be yet occupied so extensive. For

1,107,167 this and for other reasons, therefore, it may be more fitting

25,761

35,000 to describe the several colonies, with respect to their in Total for Austradustrial and social conditions, under their respective names.

lian Colonies... 1,825,6929,754,671 31,762,487 35,738,295 36,407,428 To enable the reader, however, to judge of the general posi

(R. A.)

Victoria
New South Wales...
South Australia .....

£ 790,492 560,275 198,257 146,690 104,217

£ 3,943,691 3,324,713

937,648 1,120,0:34 293,753 134,832

£
£

£
12,445,722 | 16,533,856 15,302,454
10,842,415 | 11,088 388 11,815,829
2,174,900 3,829,830
4,786,850 2,881,726 3,542,513
1,477,600

893,556 297,328 265,217

Tasmania..........
Western Australia..

ase III.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

AUSTRIA
A to
Oesterreich and Oesterreich-Ungarn), is an extensive between 3400 and 4500 feet above the level of the

sea,

the country in the southern portion of Central Europe, lying forests extend to 5600 or 6400 feet, and the line of perbetween long. 9° and 26° E., and lat. 42° and 51° N. It thus petual snow is from 7800 to 8200 feet. In some parts, extends through 17 degrees of longitude and 9 degrees of however, particularly in Tyrol, Styria, Carinthia, and latitude, and has an area of about 240,000 English square Carniola, the mountains appear in wild confusion, with miles. With the exception of the islands in the Adriatic, rugged peaks and bare precipitous sides, forcibly remindand the narrow projecting tract of Dalmatia, it forms a ing the traveller of Switzerland. Tyrol in particular has, compact region of country, but of an irregular shape. It like that country, its cascades, its glaciers, its perpetual is surrounded on all sides by other countries, except where snows, and its avalanches. it borders upon the Adriatic, which is about one-fifth of The Alps occupy the south-west portion of the country, the entire extent of its boundaries Of the rest, about one- and form its highest lands. They are distinguished by third on the W. and N. is formed by the German empire various names, as the Rhætian, Noric, Carnic, Julian, and (Bavaria, Saxony, and Prussia), a third on the S. and E. Dinaric Alps. The Rhætian or Tyrolese Alps enter Tyrol

from the Swiss canton of the Grisons, and are the loftiest 20 POLAR

range in the country, a number of the summits rising to the height of 12,000 feet, and the highest, the Orteler Spitze, attaining a height of 12,814 feet above the level of the sea. They divide into three principal chains, the most southern of which occupies the southern portion of Tyrol,

and contains the Orteler Spitze, and others of the loftiest GARY

points in the country. The middle or principal chain extends in an easterly direction to the borders of Salzburg and Carinthia, and has many of its peaks covered with perpetual snow. The northern chain is inferior in elevation to the others, and few of its most elevated points reach the snow-line. The Noric Alps are a continuation

of the Rhætian eastward, passing through Salzburg, Styria, TURKEY

Carinthia north of the Drave, Lower and Upper Austria,

to Hungary, where they gradually sink into the plains. 35 20

They comprise three chains, a main chain and two lesser

chains proceeding northward—the one the Salzburg, the Sketch Map of Austria.

other the Styria-Austrian Alps. The main chain, the by the Turkish empire and the Danubian Principalities, Noric Alps in a stricter sense, traverses Salzburg, Carinthia, and the remaining third by Russia on the N.E. and and Styria, and has a length of about 170 miles, some of its Switzerland and Italy on the S.W. The boundaries are peaks rising to the height of 12,000 feet. The Carnic or formed in some parts by river courses, in others by moun- Carinthian Alps are also an offshoot of the Rhætian Alps tain ranges, and sometimes they extend through an open eastward, occupying the south-east of Tyrol, Carinthia, country. As compared with France, Austria has a form and the north of Carniola. They form several branches, nearly as compact, but its frontiers are by no means so and some of the summits are over 9000 feet high. The well defined or so strongly protected by natural barriers. Julian or Carniolan Alps extend in a south-easterly direcIt ranks third in extent among the countries of Europe tion through Carniola and Croatia. They present little of (after Russia and Sweden), and fourth in point of popula- an Alpine character, and with one or two exceptions tion (after Russia, the German empire, and France). nowhere rise to the height of 5000 feet. They are for the

Austria is, after Switzerland, the most mountainous most part bare and rugged. The Dinaric Alps are a con-
country of Europe, and about four-fifths of its entire area tinuation of the preceding, extending through Croatia and
is more than 600 feet above the level of the sea. The Dalmatia, and resemble them in character. The highest
mountains are frequently covered with vegetation to a great point, Mount Dinara, from which they take their name, is
elevation. At the base are found vines and maize; on 5956 feet above the level of the sea.
the lower slopes are green pastures, or wheat, barley, and After the Alps, the most important mountain system of
other kinds of corn ; above are often forests of oak, ash, | Austria is the Carpathians, which occupy its eastern and
elm, &c.; and still higher the yew and the fir may be north-eastern portions, and stretch in the form of an arch

[graphic]
[ocr errors]

Mountains.

through Silesia, Moravia, Galicia, Hungary, and Transyl-chain abounds in iron and copper ore; and the gneiss and
vania. They have an extent of about 150 miles, and are granitic mountains of Hungary and Transylvania are rich
divided into three principal groups--the Hungarian Car- in ores of gold and silver. Numerous beds of coal are
pathians, the Carpathian Waldgebirge or Forest Moun- also found in the later formations. The Bohemian and
tains, and the Transylvanian Highlands. The Hungarian Moravian mountain system is composed chiefly of gneiss
Carpathians stretch from west to east, through Hungary, and granite. Basalt, ciinkstone, greenstone, and red sand-
Moravia, Silesia, and Galicia for about 200 miles, and stone are also common. Silver and lead mines are exten-
comprise various smaller groups, among which are the sively worked, also mines of zinc and iron. Coal is
Beskides, the Little Carpathians, and the Central Car- abundant here. The plain and hilly parts of the country
pathians or the Tatra Mountains. This last group consti- belong chiefly to the middle or Miocene period of the
tutes the highest portion of the Carpathians, having an Tertiary formation, and comprise sand, gravel, clay-marl, &c.
average elevation of over 6000 feet, and its two principal As the highlands of Austria form part of the great water- Rivers.
summits, the Eisthaler Thurin and the Lomnitzer Spitze, shed of Europe which divides the waters flowing north-
having a height of 8378 and 8222 feet respectively. In ward into the North Sea or the Baltic, from those flowing
character it resembles the Alps more than the Carpathians, southward or eastward into the Mediterranean or the Black
having rugged precipitous sides, deep chasms, snows, Sea, its rivers flow in three different directions--northward,
glaciers, cascades, &c. The Waldgebirge, or Forest Moun-southward, and eastward. With the exception of the
tains, are a series of moderate elevations, for the most small streams belonging to it which fall into the Adriatic,
part wooded, and stretching for about 160 miles through all its rivers have their mouths in other countries, and its
Hungary, Galicia, and Buckowina, with an average breadth principal river, the Danube, has also its source in another
of about 45 miles. They are in general from 3000 to country. This, which after the Volga is the largest river
6000 feet in elevation, the highest point, Pietrozza, rising of Europe, rises in the grand duchy of Baden, flows
to 7086 feet. The 'Transylvanian Highlands extend over through Würtemberg and Bavaria, and is already navigable
Transylvania, a part of Hungary, and the Military Frontier, when it enters Austria, on the borders of which it receives
into Moldavia and Wallachia. They have a length of the Inn, a river which has as large a body of water as
about 350 miles, and breadth of from 30 to 90. Several itself. It has a course of about 820 miles within the
of the summits rise to the height of 8000 feet. The sides country, which is about 48 per cent. of its entire length.
of the Carpathian mountains are generally covered with Where it enters it is 898 feet above the level of the sea,
forests to a considerable height.

and where it leaves only 132 feet. It has thus a fall The Hercynian mountain system spreads itself over within the country of 766 feet, and is at first a very rapid Bohemia, Silesia, Moravia, and the middle and northern stream, but latterly a very slow one. Its affluents, after portions of Upper and Lower Austria. It includes the the Inn, are at first generally small, the principal being the lesser systems of the Bohemian Forest, the Erzgebirge, the Traun, the Enns, and the March. In Hungary it receives Riesengebirge, and the Sudetes. The Bohemian Forest is from the Carpathians the Waag, Neutra, Gran, and Eipel; a series of wooded heights on the confines of Bohemia and and from the Alps the Drave, the Mur, and the Save. Bavaria, and extending south from the Eger to the Danube. But the principal affluent of the Danube is the Theiss, which Its highest point is 4610 feet above the sea. The Erzge rises in the Carpathians, and drains nearly the whole of birge, or Ore Mountains, commence on the left bank of the eastern half of Hungary. The country drained by the the Elbe, run eastward between Bohemia and Saxony, and Danube is formed into several basins by the mountains terminate near the sources of the White Elster. None of approaching its banks on either side. The principal of the summits rise to the height of 4000 feet. The Riesenge- these are the Linz and Krems basins, the Vienna basin, birge or Giant Mountains are on the confines of Bohemia and the little and great Hungarian basins. Between this towards Prussian Silesia, and have their highest point, last and the plains of Wallachia, it passes through the Schneekoppe or Riesenkoppe, 5330 feet above the sea. narrow rocky channels of Islach, Kasan, and the Iron The Sudetes is a name sometimes given to all the moun Door, where the fall is about 41 feet in less than half a tains of Northern Bohemia, but it inore properly belongs mile. The Dniester, which, like the Danube, flows into the to that range which runs between Moravia and Prussian Black Sea, has its source in the Carpathians in Eastern Silesia, from the March to the Oder. The highest summit, Galicia, and pursues a very winding course towards the the Spieglitzer Schneeberg, is 4774 feet high.

south-east. It receives its principal affluents from the The great central chain of the Alps consists of primitive Carpathians, and drains in Austria a territory of upwards rocks, principally gneiss, mica slate, and granite. Occa- of 12,000 English square miles. It is navigable for about sionally clay-slate, greywacke, and limestone overlie these 300 miles. The Vistula and the Oder both fall into the rocks. Iron ore is very abundant here, and gold and Baltic. The former rises in Moravia, flows first north copper are found. The northern and southern ranges of through Austrian Silesia, then takes an easterly direction the Alps are composed of limestone. In the southern along the borders of Prussian Silesia, and afterwards a range the limestone rests upon gneiss, which crops out in north-easterly, separating Galicia from Russian Poland, and some parts. Iron, copper, lead, and zinc ores, and quick leaving Austria not far from Sandomir. Its course in silver are found in some parts to a large extent. In the Austria is 240 miles, draining an area of 15,500 square northern range the limestone is in some places covered miles. It is navigable for nearly 200 miles, and its prinwith clay-slate, greywacke, and transition limestone. In cipal affluents are the Save and the Bug. The Oder has the north the limestone is covered with sandstone, which also its source in Moravia, flows first east, and then northextends in an almost continuous line from the Lake of east through Austrian Silesia into Prussia. Its length Constance to the neighbourhood of Vienna. In this dis- within the Austrian territory is only about 55 miles, no trict a number of beds of coal are found. The central part of which is navigable. The only river of this country range of the Carpathians is formed chiefly of gneiss, granite, which flows into the North Sea is the Elbe. It has its clay-slate, greywacke, and transition limestone, frequently source in the Riesengebirge, not far from the Schneekoppe, covered with extensive patches of Tertiary formations. | flows first south, then east, and afterwards north-east North and south of this are ranges of sandstone mountains, through Bohemia, and then enters Saxony. Its principal on which diluvial and alluvial deposits are also found. affluents are the Adler, Iser, and Eger, and, most important The northern sandstone range is rich in salt; the central of all, the Moldau. The last, from the length of its course,

Geology.

« EelmineJätka »