Page images
PDF
EPUB

sed to contain 10,000 inhabitants. Its chief manufactures are ropes and candles. Sterling, Dumfries, Ayr, Dunkeld, Berwick, and some other towns, are places of considerable population, trade and manufactures.

146. Canals. The principal canal, and one of the noblest in Europe, is that which connects the Forth and Clyde, bearing boats and small vessels across the island. The bredth of this canal at the surface is 56 feet, the depth, 7 feet; the locks are 75 feet long and the gates 20 feet wide. It begins at the river Carron, and in the course of ten miles rises, by 20 locks, to the highth of 155 feet-then proceeds 18 miles on a level is carried over a river, and a public road on arches, and ends at the Clyde. The whole length is 35 miles. It was begun in 1768, and finished in 1790, when a hogshead of water from the Forth was conveyed and poured into the Clyde as a symbol of the junction of the two seas.

147. Manufactures. The manufactures of Scotland experience a rapid growth during the last century. The principal articles are linen of various kinds, cottons, musiins, gauze, lawn, thread; stockings, carpets, iron, glass, lether, ropes and candles. The manufacture of cotton in Glasgow, occupies 15,000 looms, and the goods produced annually are valued at a million and a half sterling. The goods made at Paisley are of near half the value.

148. Commerce. The commerce of Scotland is chief- . ly carried on by Edinburgh and Glasgow, from the har. bors of Leith and Grenock; but the trade of Perth, Dundee and Aberdeen is also considerable. The chief exports are linen, iron, glass, lead, woollen stuffs, cottons of all kinds, stockings, earthern ware, cordage, soap, lether and candles. The imports are wines, brandy, rum, sugar, tobacco, cotton, rice, indigo, Irish beef, butter and linens. The amount of exports is something more than a million sterling.

149. Fisheries. The rivers and adjacent seas of Scotland abound with herring, salmon and various other kinds of fish, which furnish large quantities of food to the inhabitants. Great efforts have been made to establish the herring fishery, and liberal bounties offered by govern:

ment, but these efforts have not been attended with complete success.

IRELAND. 150. Name. Ireland was known to the Phenicians and Greeks, long before the invasion of England by Julius Cesar. The Greeks called it Juverna; the Romans, Hibernia, which are the same name, differently modified, and both formed from a Celtic word, signifying west, or the western island. After the Romans became well acquainted with the island, they discovered the ruling people to be the Scots, and called the country Scotia ; which name was, in the eleventh century, transferred to Scotland, where the Scots had settled. Ireland then resumed its ancient name, which was Erin, with the Belgic term lanı, Erin land, which has been softened into Ireland.

15!. Situation. Ireland lies in the Atlantic, west of England, from which it is separated by a channel called the Irish Sea and St. George's Channel. This strait varies in width from 20 to more than 100 miles. The longitude of Ireland is from 5 to 10 degrees west of London, and its latitude from 51 to 55 degrees north.

152. Extent and population. This island is about 300 miles in length, and from 120 to 160 miles in bredth. It contains about 27,500 square miles, and three millions of inhabitants, or nearly 110 to a square mile. Some writers estimate the inhabitants at four millions ; but it is probable this estimate is too high.

153. History of Ireland. Ireland was originally peopled by the Celts, from Gaul and Britain. Afterwards the Scots, a tribe of Goths, established themselves in the morth and east parts of the island, and the Romans called the country Scotia. But many of the Scots migrated to the west of Scotland, and the remainder were incorporated with the original inhabitants. In the year 1171, Henry II. of England reduced Ireland under the sovereignty of England; the English laws were introduced, and many English inhabitants. The conquest however was not completed, till the reign of Henry VIII. or r'ather of James I. In 1641, the Irish revolted and massa

cred 40,000 English inhabitants ; but this insurrection was finally crushed by Cromwell. Ireland was governed as a dependent kingdom, by a Lord Lieutenant, untill the year 1800, when it was united to England, and it now sends a hundred representatives to the Imperial Parliament.

134. Mountains. The mountains of Ireland are nei. ther numerous, nor high. There is however a ridge of high lands, lying in the direction of south west and north east, near the center of the island, which cast the waters to the east and west. The mountains are mostly in short lines or detached groops. The highest of these, Mangerton, near the lake of Killarney; and Donard, in the county of Down, rise not more than 2600, or 3000 feet above the level of the sea.

155. Rivers. The Shannon. The largest river in Ireland is the Shannon, whose source is the lake Allen, and which, passing through two lakes, the Ree and the Derg, spreads into an estuary from 3 to 10 miles wide, which extends 60 miles from the sea. The whole course of the river is about 160 miles, and it affords navigable water nearly to its source ; but the navigation is impeded by a ridge of rocks below Killaloe.

156. Smaller Rivers The Lee on the south, enters the harbor of Cork; the Blackwater, a large river on the south also, discharges its waters into Youghall Bay. The Barrow, à stream of 100 miles in length, in conjunction with the Nore and Suir, forms the harbor of Waterford in the south east; the Slaney, a smaller stream, forms the harbor of Wexford. The Liffy is a small stream, rendered worthy of notice, by having the metropolis upon its banks. The Boyne, a stream on the east, of 50 miles in length, is famous for the battle fought between King William and James in 1690. The Banna and Foyl, in the north, are rivers of considerable magnitude.

157. Bays and Harbors. Ireland is remarkable for the number of spacious bays which indent its shores, and form excellent harbors. Of these the principal are Carrickfergus, Strongford, Carlingford, Dundalk, Dublin, Wexford, Waterford, Cork, Kinsale,

Baltimore, Bantry, Kenmare, Dingle, the Shannon, Galway, Sligo, Donegall, Swilly and Foyl. Many others might be mentioned, which are of less importance.

158. Lakes. Ireland contains many lakes, some of which are of considerable extent. The word Lake is pronounced by the Irish Lough, as by the Scots, Loch; but the Irish sometimes apply it to an estuary or broad inlet of the sea, such as the Swilley and the Foyl, which in America, we should call a bay, of which the Delaware furnishes an example.

159. Chief Lakes. The Earn in the north west, is the largest lake in Ireland, being 30 miles long, and 12 broad, but composed of two parts connected by a strait of four miles wide. The Neagh, in the north east, is 22 miles in length, and 12 in width. These lakes contain many small islands. Corrib, in the county of Galway, is 20 miles in length, but narrow. The Ree and the Derg, which are expansions of the Shannon, are less considerable. The lake of Killarney, in the south west, is of secondary magnitude, but its borders furnish romantic views and delightful scenery.

160. Moors and Bogs. The bogs and moors of Ireland are proverbial, and form a singular feature of the country. They are of different kinds; some being covered with grass, but so soft as to endanger the unwary traveller. Others are shallow lakes, studded with bogs, or tufts of rushes. Others are peat-moors, which furwish fuel for the people. Others are pools of water and mire. These bogs are rarely level, but varied with hills and dales.

161. Forests. Scarcely the semblance of a forest reinains in Ireland; the wood being long since consumed, and not replaced by the hand of industry. Turf and coal are the fuel used by the inhabitants.

162. Climate and Soil. Ireland like England, has a mild climate, but very humid, by reason of the vapors wafted upon the land by westerly winds. The summers are not excessively warm, and the winters exhibit little or no frost, in ordinary years. But Ireland, like England, sometimes experiences severe frost, in winters of unusual severity. The soil is a stony clay or loam, or a · gravelly sand ; but is remarkably fertile, and furnishes a rich herbage for innumerable cattle.

163. Division of Ireland. The most usual division of Ireland is into four provinces-Leinster, Ulster, Connaught and Munster. Leinster contains 12 counties; Ulster, 9; Connaught, 5; and Munster, 6; in the whole, 32 counties.

164. Government. In primitive ages, Ireland was subject to a number of petty princes and chieftains. After it became subject to the crown of England, the government was formed upon the plan of that of England, with a Parliament, consisting of a House of Peers and a House of Commons; and a Lord Lieutenant appointed by the King of England, represented the power of the crown. In 1800, Ireland was united to Great Britain, and is now represented in the Imperial Parliament.

165. Army and Revenues. The Irish form no inconsiderable part of the regular army of Great Britain. In addition to which, Ireland in 1780 raised 40,000 volunteers, and has recently equipped a considerable body of militia. The revenues are estimated at a million sterling. · 166. Religion. The established religion of Ireland is that of the Church of England; but two thirds or three fourths of the people are Roman Catholics ; and the Presbyterians are supposed to be as numerous as the Episcopalians. There are four archbishoprics ; those of Armagh, Dublin, Cashel and Tuam. The Archbishopric of Armagh contains seven Bishoprics and that of Dublin, three; that of Cashel, five, and that of Tuam, three.

167. Language. In the west of Ireland, the old Irish language, which is the Celtic, with some intermixture of Gothic words, is still in use. In other parts of Ireland, the English tung has been introduced with the government and inhabitants of England, and the Irish is nearly extinct.

168. Literature. Trinity College at Dublin is the only University in Ireland.' It consists of 33 buildings of 8 rooms in each, arranged in two squares, and is governed by a Chancellor, and Proyost, with their deputies, 22

« PreviousContinue »