Page images


vere one.

certain disasters, a union of means On the 9th of June they anchored still greater than any one canton can to an iceberg, which was aground afurnish, is requisite to save the popula- bout a mile from the shore, in 38 fation of an entire district. In such cases, thoms of water, in latitude 68° 22', and the whole nation ought to unite around longitude 63° 42, and they now obthe altar of their native country, and tained an accurate measure of the of humanity. Let us not overlook, in variation, free from any irregularity this dispensation, in this urgent and in the action of the ship. The variaaffecting case, in which man receives tion was found to be 67° 39' W., and assistance from his neighbour, his fel- the dip 83° 7'. This iceberg was so low-citizen, and his country, the plan firmly moored, that the levels of the of Providence for uniting man with dipping-needle were not in the slightman, the village with its neighbour, est degree affected. In anchoring to. the valley with a whole country, and an iceberg, the boat goes ahead with every part of the nation with the whole the anchors, and fixes them before the nation. The free man respects those ship approaches. The ship then stands, sacred bonds which give unity to every in, and makes fast her bow to the ice. nation, and assures it civilization, du- An iceberg that is aground is always ration, and happiness.

preferred ; and if it is so low that the ESCHER DE LA LINTH. bowsprit can lie over it, so much the Berne, August, 1818.


On the 16th, they touched at the Whale Islands, where there is a Danish resident, who told them that the

preceding winter had been a very se-, THE NORTH POLE,

On the 15th, the Isabella anchored [The following account of the expedition to an iceberg about a mile from the to the North Pole, to the result of which all north-west coast of Waygatt, or Hare Europe is looking with anxiety, has been Island. All the astronomical apparadrawn up from original letters from Captain tus was now got ashore, a temporary Ross and Lieut. Robertson of the Isabella, observatory was erected, and the foland from other documents ; and we consider ourselves particularly fortunate in hay. lowing accurate observations on the ing had it in our power to present our reade variation and dip were obtained : ers with so full and interesting an abstract North lat. of observatory, 70° 26' 13" of its proceedings.}

West long. of ditto, 54° 51' 49"
Variation west,

71° 30' The ships under Captain Ross's com- Dip,

82° 48' 47" mand left Shetland on the 3d May, A pendulum, which vibrated 82 se. and, after a good passage across the conds more than twenty-four hours in Atlantic, they reached Cape Farewell the latitude of London, when the temon the 22d. The variation now in- perature was 52°, vibrated in Waygatt creased as they advanced to the west, Island 153 seconds more than twentyand the thermometer stood at 421. four hours, when the temperature was In latitude 58° 38', and west longitude 43°. Waygatt, or Hare Ísland, is a. 50° 54', the first iceberg was seen with bout nine miles long, and 1400 feet much loose ice floating around. high. Some of the rocks are basaltic,

On the 2d of June the main west ice and coal is found near the surface, in appeared, in latitude 65o and longitude the north-east part of it. The

latitude 56o. On the 4th they made the coast of the island is 70° 22' 15" W., and of Greenland, in latitude 65° 62'. The its longitude 54° 51' W., instead of variation this day was as follows: 50° 15', as given in the charts.

Variation. On the 20th of June the ice opened Ship’s head N. to compass, 66° 22' W. a little to the northward, and the IsaShip's head S.,

58° 23' W. bella and the Alexander attempted Ship's head E.S.E., 47° 23' W. to get to the coast of Greenland, by Ship’s head W.,

77° 34' W. warping and towing the ships through On the 8th of June the Isabella was the straits. The winds were light and hermed in with ice on all sides; and variable, with frequent calms. The Isathough a south-west gale was blowing, bella was first in the attempt, and was she was obliged to tack about where drifted about with the ice, by the she could find room.

tides, till the morning of Monday, the

[ocr errors]

22d. The Alexander, however, was the extreme being 17°, making the more fortunate, and succeeded in get- variation 64° on that tack. ting over to the land, and into clear On the 27th June, when there water, on the evening of Sunday the was the appearance of an opening, the 21st, when it anchored to an iceberg Isabella cast off from the ice, and to wait for the Isabella.

cruised about in a narrow pool for On the 26th of June, at the dis- several days. tance of only twenty miles from Way- On the 2d of July a fine fresh gatt Island, the Isabella got into a breeze opened a passage for the ships, piece of clear water that carried them and on the 3d they were in latitude to the land-ice, on the north side of 71° 30', and on the 4th in latitude Jacob's Bight, where they made the 72° 30'. The following measure of following observations.

the variation was then taken : North latitude,

71° 2

North latitude, 72° 44' West longitude.

54° 17' Variation on the ice, 78° 54' W. Variation

on the ice, 75° 29' On the 5th of July they were in The ship was now swung, and azi- 73° 15' north latitude, and 57° 14' muths taken on board at every five west longitude. Some of the Esquipoints, when the following results maux families visited both the Isabella. were obtained.

and the Alexander. The women are

Variation. dressed in the same manner as the Ship’s head, NORTH, 77° 43' W. men, only their hair is tied on the Ship’s head, NORTH EAST, 70° 30' W. crown of their head, and they have Ship’s head, EAST, 64° 56' W. a small sort of peak on the fore and Ship’s head, south EAST, 67° 7' W. after part of their jackets. These faShip’s head, south, 76° 27' W. milies reported, that the part of the sea Ship’s head, souTH WEST, 84° 38' W. where they were had been clear of ice Ship’s head, west, 93° 33' W. the whole winter; that no whales had Ship’s head, NORTH WEST, 90° 20' W. been seen during the season ; and

Captain Ross is decidedly of opinion, that, in their opinion, there would be though there is some difference of senti- plenty of clear water to the northward. ment on the subject, that the follow. This opinion was considered probaing points are established by his ob- ble ; for though the number of iceservations: 1. That the deviation oc- bergs were, in the present latitude, as casioned by the direction of the ship at Riskoll, Waygatt Island, and Black head, is not on the magnetic meridian, Hook, almost beyond belief, yet the but differs in every ship. In the Isa- field ice appeared by no means so bella, it is to the east of north, and in close as to stop their progress. One the Alexander, and the Harmony of of these icebergs, which was measurHull, to the westward of north. 2. That ed, was 123 feet above water, and there is a point of change in the de- aground in 125 fathoms, yet this viation, which may easily be found by was a very small one compared with azimuth or bearings of a distant object; some hundreds that had been seen. and that when this point of deviation Whenever the depth of water is under is found, it may in like manner be 100 fathoms, there are found immense found what proportion is to be added mountains of ice aground. In fine weaor subtracted from the true variation, ther, streams of perfectly fresh water are but only by actual observation, for the continually flowing from them. Whendeviation does not increase either in ever a fog, with a north wind, touches an arithmetical or logarithmic propor- these icebergs, it becomes ice, and adds tion. On board the Isabella, and in to their bulk. The air, during these latitude 74°, the point of change is N. fogs, is 28°, and the water 312; but 17° E. The extreme deviation is, in clear weather the temperature has when the ship’s head is N. 80° W. risen so high as 84o on an iceberg in viz. 19°, which is additive to the the sun. true variation ; so that with the ship's

“ From the 65th deg. to this, says Mr head W. and N. there is 100° of Robertson, the sea is literally covered with variation ; or by steering W. and N. bergs, and we see no end to them : Where the ship actually makes a S. by E. it is not in° 74. or to the southward on this

they are generated is yet unknown to us; On the other hand, the vari

That they are formed on the land ation decreases when the ship’s head is is certain, from the many stones of great to the east, but not in an equal ratio, size which are seen ;--some of them are





covered with sand and dirt, others have re- ice, and got to the lat. of 74° 43', gular strata of sand and stones running where they were again stopped and through them horizontally. They are of fast to a field in a thick fog which all forms-generally they have a high cleft froze as it fell, and covered every thing on one side, and shelve down to the water on the other; some exceed 200 feet perpen

with ice. The compasses were now dicular all round. Loose or stream ice con- traversing very sluggishly, owing prosists of pieces about the size of an acre and bably to the increase of the dip. under; about a foot above the surface, On the 22d of July, an opening in when it is blown together by strong winds, the ice enabled the ship to reach 75°, one piece is edged up on the top of another; of north lat. The following measure it is then called packed ice, or a pack.- of the variation was then taken : Flaws are large pieces of field ice. The North Lat.

74° 55' ice generally drifts with the wind, though a

Variation on the ice, 84° 30' West. current must set southward, or how would

The coast of Greenland now apthe bergs find their way south. We have not been able to detect any current. The peared a continued smooth ridge of flood tide sets here from southward. At snow, variegated here and there with Waygatt we had a rise and fall of seven feet the black peak of a lofty mountain.* at spring tides. Where the icebergs drift Some of the large islands on the coast into shallow water (that is to say 150 fa- appear less covered with snow. The thoms or under) they ground, and obstruct land ice extends to the distance of the passage of the smaller ice, and form

three or four leagues from the land, barriers which it is difficult to pass. In 68

so that it is impossible to approach the there is a reef, in 70, another, in 74 another, generally found full of ice by the here taken in from 2 to 400 fathoms,

coast in this latitude. Soundings were fishers; we have found it the same. standing a few leagues from land we find and soft mud and small stones were 85 fathoms here, closer on 150, 90, and so

obtained. No current could be oba The water runs in small streams from served by the lead lying at the bottom, the bergs, so we have no difficulty in get- . although the ice on the surface was in ting it. I am now more sanguine of get. motion. ting a long way north and west than I was at the first of the voyage.

On the 25th of July they reached

I am of opinion lat. 75° 21', and long. 60°. 30'. The that the ice will clear away, and that very The small ice has been for some

weather was now clearer than it had time consuming fast, and will be all dis- been for some time, and the variation solved by the end of this month, even with- was increasing so fast, that it became out wind to break it."

difficult to find out exactly how the The following measure of the varia- ship was steering by the compass.tion was taken on the 5th of July. The following measure of the variation North latitude,

73° 20' was taken, West longitude, 57° 14'

North lat.

75° 5' Variation on the ice, 80° 1' W.

West long.

60° 22 On the 7th of July, in 74', the


87° W. ships were again obstructed by the ice. Dip,

84° 25' The icebergs and the flaws were much On the afternoon of the 25th, the heavier than they had hitherto appear- Isabella was jammed between two ed. The ship now reached the Three fla of ice, and having seen a whale Islands discovered by Baffin about ship at a short distance, Captain Ross 200 years ago. They are situated in resolved to send home his despatches lat. 74° 4', and in west long. 57° 45' with her, lest he should not fall in greatly to the west of the point for- with another, and lest the ice should merly assigned to him. Captain Ross open and separate them. Just before has found, in general, that the coast the despatches were sent off, the ice of Greenland, above the lat. of 68°, is about 100 miles farther to the west The article GREENLAND, which was than in the Admiralty charts. The written for the Edinburgh Encyclopædia dip was here 84° 9'.

by Sir Charles Giesecké, who resided seven On the 9th and 10th, the ships years in that country, has been found to stood to the westward, but they found contain a very correct account of it. “The the ice quite fast. Baffin was stopped letters from on board the Isabella, given in

description of Greenland, says one of the by the ice in that very spot, and at

Dr Brewster's Encyclopædia, is so correct the same season of the year.

that no one need add any thing more on On the 17th of July, the vessels that subject, until the face of the country is took advantage of an opening in the again changed.”. Vol. IV.



[ocr errors]


closed all round them. They were land at which the expedition touched, 3 miles from a small rocky island, in and three bottles of water, one from a 270 fathoms mud; and the island, field of ice, one of the water taken from which was distant 5 miles from the the surface at the temperature of 32, main land, was connected with it by and the other at the depth of 80 faice. Land was seen bearing north thoms, as brought up by Sir H. Davy's west by west.


When this apparatus is Captain Ross states, that he has en- kept down 15 minutes at 80 fathoms, countered four burrows of ice: one in it gives the same temperature, when lat. 68°, one in 70°, one in 72° 40', and drawn up, as the self-registering theranother, which he had passed, and mometer. Some water, when taken which he hopes to be the last, in 74° up, was at 30°; and, at the same 30'. He does not venture to hazard time, the self-registering thermometer, an opinion respecting the ultimate at 200 fathoms, gave 28o. The wind success of the enterprise, but every was south, and the ice driving to the thing had hitherto been favourable, north. The specific gravity of the and there were obvious appearances of sea water, in lat. 74°, and temperature the ice clearing away.

Neither the 46°, is 1.0266, and at temperature 49°, Isabella nor the Alexander had met 1.0260, when taken from a depth of with any accident, and there had not 80 fathoms. The temperature was been a single invalid on board of either 31° when it was brought up; but it ship. The voyage had been in every could not be weighed at that temperrespect pleasant. For five or six ature, as it contained much fixed air. weeks, the first reef was taken in only The box for Dr Brewster contains

The water was in all weathers various specimens from different parts as smooth as a mill-pond. There was of the coast of Greenland, and from scarcely any rain. The sun sometimes Waygatt Island ; and likewise specishone without a cloud during the mens of the strata of stones and rocks whole 24 hours, and the only changes taken from the principal icebergs. of weather were from cloudy weather We shall now conclude this notice to thick fogs, and sometimes light with a tabular view of the variation falls of snow.

and dip of the needle at different The whale vessel which brought points of the ship’s course. Captain Ross's despatches, brought al

Variation Dip of the so several boxes, containing minerals and objects of natural history for Sir Joseph Banks, Bart. Sir Everard Home, Bart. Mr Barrow, Professor Jameson, 74 and Dr Brewster; all of which were released at the custom-house by an

From these observations it appears, order from the Lords of the Treasury.* The box for Professor Jameson contains

that the ships were approaching rapidspecimens of the mineralogy of the ly to the magnetic pole. From the different places on the coast of Green

observations on the variation, which were previously made, we are disposed

to think that there is a succession of * We regret to learn, that the boxes poles, or a magnetic ridge, as it may landed at Leith were opened by the customhouse officers, and so roughly handled, that

be called, with a diffused and movea very important part of one of the collec- able polarity, stretching to the

west tions was utterly ruined. We trust that in of Baffin's Bay. The above observa, future an order from government will pre- tions, however, do not yet enable us vent such unnecessary and absurd interfere either to confirm or overthrow this cona

N. Lat. 68 22 0 70 26 15

2 30 72 44 0

4 0 74 45 0 75 5 0

W. Lon. 539 42' 0" 51 51 49 54 17 0


on the Ice. Needle.

67° 39 W 830 71' 0
71 30 82 48 47
75 29
78 54

84 9
84 50
87 0

84 25

57 45 0

60 22

[ocr errors]





Discovery of a great Bank of Cod off the connected with the varying elasticity of the Shetland Islands. We are informed that vapour, at the upper and lower stations ; an immense bank covered with Cod has and the other with the expansion which the been discovered, extending from Papa Wes. yapour produces upon the intermediate com tra, in Orkney, along the west coast of lumn of air, Mr Anderson has derived a the Shetland Islands. Already the fishing formula, the results obtained from which has been great. Next season it is expected agree, as near as can be expected from the that this hitherto hidden treasure will af- nature of the data, with the heights deducford lucrative employment to several hun- ed from Geometrical measurement. These dred sail of fishing vessels. The fishermen corrections are exceedingly intricate, both report, that from 150 to 200 sail of vessels with regard to the manner of deriving and can fish on it, and out of sight of each other. applying them ; but this is perhaps insepaWe expect, in a future Number, to com- rable from the nature of the quantities themmunicate a full account of this important selves. discovery.

Heights of Hills in Scotland. It is Dr Hibbert.-We understand Dr Hib- somewhat singular, that the lofty hill called bert has just returned from the Shetland Benvracky, which terminates the vale of Islands, after having spent five months in Athole on one hand, and the Strath of the active and successful investigation of Garry, with the beautiful Parks of Blair, their mineralogy. He has brought with on the other, has never been classed among him a most extensive series of the rocks and the remarkable mountains of Perthshire. minerals of that remote region--and the This is more a matter of surprise, as the view descriptions he has executed are so complete from its summit is one of the most beauti. and satisfactory, that we expect, ere long, ful and extensive among the Alpine scenery from this enterprising naturalist, a complete of Scotland, presenting at once a fine asmineralogical history map of Shetland. semblage of all that is grand and interesting

Measurement of Heights by Barometer. in a landscape. Its height has lately been The method of measuring heights by the determined to be 2,756 feet above the level Barometer is about to receive a very im of the sea. This is the result of three Baroportant improvement, by introducing into metrical calculations, and one Geometrical the common formula a correction for humi. measurement, conducted with every attendity. Mr Adam Anderson, Rector of the tion to accuracy, in reference to a point in Academy of Perth, who has devoted much the parish of Moulin, near the banks of of his attention to this subject, and publish the Tummel, the height of which above the ed the results of his inquiries in the Arti- level of the sea was carefully deduced from cle HYGROMETRY in the Edinburgh En- a series of contemporaneous observations cyclopædia, conducted by Dr Brewster, has with the barometer made at the point allately ascertained, that the density of the at- luded to, and the manse of Kinfauns. On mospheric vapour diminishes as we ascend, account of the coincidence of result in all in a much faster ratio than that of air it- these cases, the height thus obtained must be self; and that the disproportionate effects extremely near the truth. Cairn-Our, the thus produced by the elasticity of the va- loftiest of the Ben Gloe mountains, situated pour, at the upper and lower stations, cause about 8 miles north from Benvracky, and a deviation from the law by which the den- overlooking Glen Tilt, has been determined, sity of the air, at different elevations, has by referring it to the same point, to be hitherto been supposed to be regulated.- 3690 feet above the level of the sea. The deviation of the density of the atmos- Limit of Congelation. It appears from inpherical strata from the condition produced formation which comes from Switzerland and by perfect elasticity, is, however, frequently other alpine districts, that an opinion has counteracted by the dilatation of the whole partly obtained, of the increase of ice general. column of air, by means of the vapour ly, and the descent of the limit of congelation. which it holds in solution ; and sometimes From the Tyrol, it is said, that " In this these disturbing causes are so nicely balanc- country an extraordinary increase of the ed, that the density of the air, as we as- glaciers is remarked in several places. A cend, differs but little from what it would mass of ice, which advanced from the Sind. be, if the air were perfectly elastic. At ner valley, has increased from the 6th of other times, the difference is considerable, May to the 30th of July, 76 fathoms. In and leads to very great errors, in the ordi- many parts of Switzerland the same remark nary formula for calculating heights, by the is made. Where, only one generation barometer, particularly when the air is very back, the most fertile alpine pastures were damp. By applying to the formula two seen, there is now eternal ice; and the line corrections, one of which is inmediately of snow seems, in the course of time, tu


« PreviousContinue »