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antiquity, for the tesselated pavements of the ancients The mosaic pavements discovered in Britain, which are clearly examples of mosaic-work. We are told in was long a Roman province, are so numerous that we the book of Esther, that in the palace of Ahasuerus cannot afford space to enumerate them. It must suffice was " a pavement of red, and blue, and black marble.” to say that the generality of such mosaics represent the Athenæus speaks of the rich pavements in the palace of circus-games, theatrical scenes, marine deities, tritons, Demetrius Phalereus (B.C. 312), and Hiero, king of and nereids, together with various ornamental devices. Syracuse (B.C. 270), is said by the same author to have Not only pavements, but other portions of large buildhad an extraordinary ship constructed, in which the ings also, were decorated in this manner, particularly at tesselated parements of the cabins represented the whole later periods than those to which the production of such fable of the Iliad.
objects as those just described must be referred. Justi The Romans carried the art of constructing such nian decorated the church of St. Sophia, at Constantipavements to the greatest extent, since in all parts of nople, during the sixth century, with mosaic-work, formed Europe once included within the Roman Empire, speci- partly by doublets, or pieces of glass united horizontally mens of them are from time to time discovered. One of with a coloured foil interposed. Some of the earlier the finest extant was discovered at a village near Seville, popes decorated the churches of Italy with mosaic, but in the year 1799, at the depth of three feet and a half the art declined there in about the fifth or sixth century, from the surface. It extends about forty feet in length, and appears to have been almost totally lost, until by nearly thirty in breadth, and contains a representation | Andrea Taffi learned it from a Greek artist, named of the circus-games, in a parallelogram in the centre, Apollonius, who was employed on the church of St. three sides of which are surrounded by circular com- Mark, at Venice, in the thirteenth century. From that partments, containing portraits of the Muses, inter- time the art of working in mosaic became much pracspersed with the figures of animals, and some imaginary tised, and many eminent Italians distinguished themsubjects. In the race-course are seen
a chariot over- selves by their skill therein, among whom were Giotto, turned, the charioteer thrown out of his seat, and horse- Tucca, Mancini, Calandra, Lafranco, Cristofi, Brughi, men dismounted. The charioteer, having been injured Calendrelli, and Camussi. by his fail, is supported by two men belonging to a dif- The most curious specimens of mosaic are those ferent faction or party, as may be ascertained by their which, from the small size of the pieces composing costume, which in all the figures is well represented. them, enable the artists to produce tolerable repreThe horses are of a deep brown colour; their tails are sentations of pictures, in which all the differentlycat as in the modern fashion, and they have a generally coloured portions are given by appropriately-coloured spirited appearance. Various persons interested in the pieces of enamel
. Many specimens of this kind have games appear in other portions of the course, and been preserved. . On the roof of the baptistery of the beyond it; but part of the pavement has been de- Church of St. John at Ravenna, the baptism of Jesus stroyed by time, and by the rough usage of the work. Christ is represented in mosaic, ascribed to the fifth cenmen by whom it was discovered. A double row of tury. The ceremony is represented as being performed circular compartments bound the sides of the course, partly by sprinkling and partly by immersion. A circular some of which are entire. Each is about three feet and compartment in the centre is occupied by Christ standing a half in diameter, ornamented by a broad circular bor- upright in the river, while John, holding a mis-shapen der as a frame. The whole plan is finished by an exte- cross in one hand, pours water from a shell or some vessel rior border, highly embellished. Nine of these compart- on his head. It likewise contains a human figure, inments are occupied by busts of the Muses, arranged scribed Jordann, rising out of the water, which is proafter the manner prescribed by Hesiod, and in the order bably a personification of the sacred river. This comof the books of Herodotus, but alternately, so that a partment is environed by full-length figures of the twelve compartment containing a mask or an animal, or some apostles, and the whole is surrounded by a border, conorher subject, is always interposed between two of the sisting of pulpits, altars, and other sacred emblems. Moses. The name of each Muse is inscribed in Rome has been celebrated for the production of her respective compartment, and several have their mosaic pictures. We are told of a portrait of Pope attributes, concerning which antiquaries have been fre- Paul the Fifth, in which the face alone consists of one quently at variance. The countenances of the Muses are million seven hundred thousand pieces, each no larger bandsome, deep brown, as if belonging to a southern cli- than a grain of millet! The enamel or other substances state, with regular features, and fine large animated eyes. prepared for this singular kind of portrait-painting, is All have auburn hair, artificially disposed in different tinted of a vast variety of different shades, in order to fashions, and in some instances ornamented. The other obtain the required gradations of colour in the picture. compartments which bound the circus are occupied vari- The present number of tints in mosaic is said to amount ously: a centaur, children in differently.coloured tunics, to no less than sixteen or seventeen thousand, proceeding arimals, birds, fruit, Aowers, &c., being among the objects by a nicety of gradation almost inconceivable. About represented. This elaborate specimen is supposed to have seventy years ago the tints were said to be about five belonged to the hall of the baths of a palace, and to have thousand in number, so that a considerable increase has been constructed prior to the reign of Domitian (À.D. 81). taken place since that time.
Another beautiful mosaic pavement was discovered at There is a large establishment at Rome, belonging to Lvonz, in the year 1806, and is supposed to be about the Pope, where mosaic painting is conducted on a large 1395 rears old. It is composed of small marble cubes, scale. The different materials are arranged in numerous sometimes interspersed with pastes of different colours, apartments
, from which they are removed by the artists and extends fifteen feet and a half in length, by nine and when wanted. Besides this establishment there are a half in breadth, exclusive of an ornamental border. The many artists at Rome occupied in smaller works, such sole details of the games of the circus are represented as pictures ; full-length figures, whose imensions do not tere, from which it appears that no less than eight chariots exceed two or three inches; birds, insects, and baskets started at a time : some of the chariots are represented of flowers,—all in miniature, and exquisitely finished. A a: broken, and the horses and charioteers fallen, as in the very elaborate mosaic picture was completed at Milan, 1:"n-aic at Seville, for it was a point of address among about twenty years ago, after Leonardo da Vinci's paint*e ancients to overthrow their competitors in the course. ing of the Last Supper, preserved in a convent of that Some of their horses are white, gray, or pale bay, and city. This mosaic was about 24 feet in length, by 12 : er figures are elegant and animated. A number of in breadth, imbedded in 12 slabs of marble. It was the persons, in peculiar costumes, seem to have a share in the production of Rafaelli, an artist of the Roman school, Ganes, and those presiding are mostly clothed in blue. by whom eight or ten men were employed on it daily
during eight years. This work, valued at 75001., was old rate of postage, that the extension of the system to ordered by Bonaparte, whose downfall caused it to re- the headlands was abandoned. No sooner, however, main in the possession of the artist, from whom, how- did the penny postage loosen the bonds which fettered ever, it was subsequently purchased by the Emperor of correspondence, than Lieutenant Watson appears to Austria. Other specimens of mosaic painting have cost have commenced the extension of his telegraphs. from five to six thousand pounds each. In the church
The reduction of postage, (he states,) offered such facilities of St. Peter's at Rome are many large specimens, after for transmitting intelligence to all parts of the kingdom, paintings by Raphael, Guido, Carlo Maratti, Guercino, that it was determined to extend the system to the principal and other eminent painters.
headlands round the coast. Telegraph stations are now at Caylus and Winkelmann, in the last century, described work at Flamborough Head and the North Foreland; at the two curious specimens of mosaic, made of glass, con
Needles, Isle of Wight, to Southampton, whence by the rail
road commmunications are received six times a day in sisting of coloured glass fibres fitted with the utmost
London; at Skirra Head, Pentland Firth, Peter Head, Aberexactness, so that a section across the fibres represented
deenshire; and others are in progress from the Start to Dartthe object to be delineated. The fibres, when properly mouth, and other principal headlands, including the Bristol joined together, were cemented by fusion into a solid Channel, the Clyde, and the south-west coast of Ireland.
Of these two specimens, each of which was Cutters as floating telegraphs, will be constantly cruising in about an inch long, and one third of an inch broad, one
the Downs, and off the Isle of Wight, for the purpose of exhibited, on a dark ground of variegated colours, a
communicating with vessels as they pass. duck of various lively colours. The outlines were decided
Such telegraphs when established, will enable vessels from and sharp, the colours beautiful and pure, and the effect
every quarter of the globe, to report themselves, or forward
intelligence immediately on making the British shores. very striking, from the artist having used in some parts
They may communicate to their owners, consignees, or opaque, and in others transparent glass. The most others interested, in cases of accident or distress; if out delicate pencil of the miniature painter could not have of time, or detained by adverse winds; if in want of stores traced more accu
curately and distinctly, either the circle or provisions; the state of foreign markets; notices of of the pupil of the eye, or the apparently scaly feathers
arrivals out, &c; and they may frequently save pilotage, on the breast and wings. The other specimen was
port charges, and loss of time, by calling off any of the teleabout the same size, and exhibited an ornamental device
graph stations for orders. of green, white, and yellow colours, which were traced where the service of these telegraphs has been very
It may not be uninteresting to adduce some instances on a blue ground, and represented volutes, beads, and
apparent. flowers resting on pyramidally-converging lines. On ist. The ship Consbrook, from Bombay, unable to save whichever side these specimens were viewed, a similar her tide into Liverpool, came to an anchor off the floating object was perceived, for the pictures were formed of light. She had but one anchor on board: at low water a gale very slender fibres of glass, laid side by side, according
commenced from the westward, and as the flood made, she to their colours, and afterwards exposed to a heat just
dragged towards the banks; she could not slip and claw off sufficient to fuse the whole into a connected mass, with
against wind and tide, nor could she run into port for want
of water; she therefore telegraphed as follows: out disturbing or injuring the tints of any one fibre.
1545. In want of an anchor and cable. Having thus given a brief description of the most re
1531. Weight of anchor, 16 cwt. markable specimens of mosaic, we will in another article
These were supplied, and brought the vessel up within describe the operations by which they are produced. 150 yards of that fatal spot, the North Spit Bank. The
vessel and cargo were estimated at about 65,0001., and were
underwritten in London, Liverpool, and Glasgow. COMMERCIAL TELEGRAPHS AND THE
6th. In a snow storm, a brigantine, 68 tons register, with PENNY POSTAGE.
a cargo on board estimated at about twelve thousand Improvements generate improvements oftentimes in
pounds value, liaving sailed from Hull the previous day, most unexpected directions. It seems almost absurd to
was driven ashore on that dangerous point, the Binkis, say that the reduction of the duty on salt has cheapened
off Spurn. Early in the morning, the telegraph an
nounced the fact of "A brigantine being ashore,' but as literature-it is so, nevertheless. The reduction of
the vessel had not been provided with the necessary flags this duty led to the manufacture of a very cheap bleach- for signals, her name could not then be announced. At ing liquid, whichi, acting upon coloured rags, rendered eleven o'clock, however, some means of communication them suitable for white paper, the manufacture of which having been effected between the vessel and the telegraph before this discovery was limited to white rags.
The on board the Humber float, intelligence was instantly forconsequence has been that paper is much cheapened. warded that shie was the Mary, Captain Lancaster, bound to A somewhat analogous instance is afforded by the
Dunkirk, which information might have been received
several hours earlier had the vessel possessed the signals. extension of mercantile telegraphs along the chief
On its being communicated to the parties interested, they headlands of the coast, which may be attributed to the
secured the means of rendering efficient assistance, by sendexistence of the penny postage. The establishment of ing down a steamer, and hiring lighters, which succeeded in these telegraphs is a private enterprise, quite uncon- discharging and transhipping this valuable cargo during the nected with government, and mainly established for night; and thus, in consequence of the rapid intelligence the purposes of rapid communication on subjects con- conveyed by the telegraph, placing the cargo in safety nected with mercantile shipping.
Great must be the before the time the accident could hare been known in Hull commerce, and deep its interests, to support a system fairly lay claim to the merit of having saved both vessel
Indeed the telegraph may
through the ordinary means. of telegraphs for its own use. Public attention has
and cargo, as at the time it was blowing a fresh gale, and ! been recently called to the subject by the completion heavy sea running. of a line of telegraphs between London and Dover, being a part of the general system. The system began post letter and the safety of a ship's cargo of several
There seems but little relationship between a penny sone years ago, by Lieutenant Watson (of the Royal thousand pounds in value, yet that such is the fact, these Navy), who formed a line of telegraphs at the port of Liverpool, and subsequently at Hull, and projected the telegraphs seem to prove; and we doubt not that as establishment of telegraphs at the chief headlands along loped, beneficial results
, not less remarkable, will be
post office improvement becomes more and more deve. the whole coast. Their advantages in communicating with
traced to its existence. vessels at sea, and procuring timely assistance in cases where the want of it has led to serious losses of life and
LONDON: property, were felt to be very valuable. But the cost of the necessary correspondence between the telegraphic
JOHN WILLIAM PARKER, WEST STRAND. stations and the central office, with the owners and other
PUBLISHED IN WEEKLY NUYBERS, PRICE ONE Pexxy, AND IN
MOXTILY Parts, PRICE SIXPENCE. parties interested, was found to be so great under the Sold by all Booksellers and Newsvevders in the Kingdom.
i is towards the south. Its area is estimated at 38,320 1. GEOGRAPHICAL Sketch.
square miles, but only about a ninth part is inhabited, We are accustomed to invest the arctic regions with the rest being occupied with naked mountains of ice, or the terrors of perpetual winter, and to suppose that by lava and volcanic ashes and sand. the character of the inhabitants necessarily partakes of The aspect of Iceland is most repulsive. Its dark and the sternness of their climate. But amid those tracts of rugged coasts frequently present lofty precipices which snow and mountains of ice, all is not desolation: a closer repel the advances of the ocean; but where the roc s are inspection reveals softer features, and proves that even rent asunder, long narrow fiords, or inlets of the sea, are there a kind overruling Providence has assigned to formed, in whose calm waters a safe retreat from a the animal and the vegetable kingdoms their periods of stormy ocean is often afforded to the mariner. The enjoyment and fertility; and has enabled man not only western coast is deeply indented with these fiords. The to endure the clime, but to share in its peculiar enjoy- southern coast alone is flat and sandy; but here occur ments and greatly to mitigate its terrors.
numerous shoals, quicksands and breakers, which expose The land to which we are about to invite attention, the fishermen to danger, and often render it impossible presents some of the wildest and grandest phenomena of to land in safety. Many parts of the shore are occupied nature together with gentler scenes which become more by long banks of sand, some of which are nearly two beautiful by contrast. The inhabitants, too, present miles broad, and in other places numerous rocks defend some of the gloomy characters of their country, relieved it from the action of the waves. y many of those Christian virtues which happily spring As the traveller approaches Iceland, his attention is up to adorn and to bless every region of the earth where arrested, long before the coast is seen, by certain white true religion is known. Even in a country which we specks in the horizon: these are the Jökuls, or snowy might be apt to fear was doomed to a spiritual darkness mountains. Sneefeld, one of these, is seen from a discommensurate with its natural gloom, numbers are tance of 140 miles, and Sniofell from 100 miles. On a encouraged through the merits of a redeeming Saviour, nearer approach, these mountains present themselves to to look forward to a brighter home than the most the eye as colossal piles of perennial snow, and when favoured spot in this world can afford.
reflecting the beams of a bright sun they shine forth Iceland is a large island situated in the North Atlan- with dazzling lustre, and tinge the atmosphere with a tic Ocean, between 13° 2V and 24° 31' of west longi- golden hue. The production of these jökuls is similar tude, and between 63° 23' and 66° 33' of north latitude. to that of the glaciers of the Alps and Pyrenees, but the Its most northern point scarcely touches the arctic low temperature and abundant moisture of Iceland, are circle, whilst the North Cape, usually placed in maps to more favourable to their increase. The rounded forms the north of this line, does not touch it. Its shape of the trachyte mountains allow vast quantities of snow resembles somewhat that of a heart, the point of which to rest on their tops and sides. The summer's sun Vol. XX.
melts the outer portion, and the water thus formed sinks Of the numerous volcanic cones of this island, that of far below the surface, where it is immediately converted Hekla is most familiar, on account of its position near into ice. Fogs and mists are attracted towards these the most frequented part of the island and in sight of mountains, and, condensed upon their summits, increase vessels sailing to Greenland and North America; as also and consolidate the mass. Its smooth shining surface the frequency of its eruptions and the ease with which reflects the rays of the sun, so that but little heat is it
it can be approached. Its height has been computed at absorbed, and if during the day a portion of the snow is 5110 feet, and its circumference at the base between dissolved, it freezes again at night. One consequence of fifteen and twenty miles. It stands alone in the midst this alternate thawing and freezing is the production of of a valley, and is about thirty miles from the southern rotten ice, which not offering sufficient resistance to the coast. It consists chiefly of lava and scoriæ mixed accumulating snows of many winters, the whole mass with ashes, pumice, and partially fused stones emitted slides down into the valley and lays waste the narrow by the fiery streams of numerous eruptions. It is fields and scanty pastures of the natives. It is related divided near the top into three peaks, in the sides of that the Icelander who has returned after years of which craters are formed. Mackenzie, in 1810, found absence in a foreign land to end his days in the home of steam issuing from the central peak, and the heat to be his childhood, may find it transformed into a desolate so great that on removing some of the exterior stones, wilderness of ice. The volcanic fires which lurk within those below were too hot to be handled. Its sides are many of these jökuls also hasten the castastrophe by marked by numerous ravines which discharge the winter destroying the slight hold the ice has on the mountain, cataracts, and seem to have been occasioned either by and, converting the under stratum into water, float the molten lava, or by the torrents of water or melted snow whole mass down into the valley. In this way seems to which often accompany an eruption.
The fertile plain have been formed the Breidamark Jökul, which is now which once surrounded this volcano is now buried twenty miles long by fifteen broad, and four hundred beneath the desolating streams which it has from time to feet high. It occupies a wide plain encompassed by hills, time poured forth: for nearly ten miles around no vegewhich several centuries ago was a beautiful vale adorned tation is to be seen, but only the ruined walls of numergrass-fields, woods, and farms. Most of these ice- ous farm-houses which tell a mournful tale of peace and mountains occur in chains extending across the island, prosperity for ever departed. and exert à powerful influence both on its civil and Although Hekla is better known than most of the physical character. The Klofa Jökuls are said to cover other Icelandic mountains, yet it is said to be by no a space of 3000 square miles, and to be still encroaching means equal in picturesque appearance to the Trehyrning on the land which separates them from the coast. It is or Three-Horned Mountain, situated near it, and repreeven feared that the present narrow and dangerous path, sented in our frontispiece, from a sketch by M. Gaimard. which forms the only road between East and South Ice- | The height of this niountain is only 2860 feet. land will soon be obliterated. The chain is prolonged In some of the plains surrounding Krabla, and other towards the west by a continuous plateau of ice, and ter- burning mountains in the north of the island, and someminates near the coast with the Oester Jökul. Many of times on the mountains themselves, are many fens conthe summits of this range greatly exceed 5000 feet in taining boiling pits of sulphur and mud. Olafsen elevation, and form conspicuous land-marks to travellers describes one which had the form of a huge kettle filled approaching Iceland from the south at a distance of to within thirty feet of the brim with viscid bluish water, nearly one hundred miles. Other mountain chains of visible only when the wind wafted aside the dense this description occur in various parts of the island, and vapour that ascended from the surface, and threw an stamp it with the character of barren desolation. Most of acid mud on the banks. Another of these strange caldrons, these rocky masses are of volcanic origin, as has often been described by Henderson, was about 700 feet below the fearfully proved by the concealed fire bursting forth with summit of the mountain. Its circumference measured fury through the icy covering which concealed its terrors. about 300 feet, and it contained a mixture of water, sul
The snowy chains of Jökuls inclose the great desert phur, and bluish-black mud, in a state of constant ebulof Iceland, "whose unknown regions form the scene of lition, and every few minutes casting up a jet from the many superstitious terrors to the natives; and indeed, centre. This rose at first to a height of about twelve the lonely and desolate aspect of this district can feet, increasing by jerks to thirty feet, when it quickly scarcely be exceeded by any other region on the earth. declined, and was succeeded by a smaller jet from Age after age, volcano on volcano have poured their another part of the pool. The sides, composed of red stony floods over its surface, till it has become almost earth and sulphur, were so soft that it was dangerous to one black scarified field. Immense masses torn from the approach the margin. This traveller speaks of the neighbouring mountains, and wide chasms, everywhere horrors of this pool as being absolutely indescribable; interrupt the progress of the traveller, whilst the and says that the awful impression they left upon his magnetic influence of the rocks renders the compass use- mind can never be erased. Sometimes a narrow tract less as a guide. Long tracts of volcanic sand, inter-covered with grass, has tempted man to take up his spersed with huge insulated fragments of lava, can abode near the scene of these terrible operations: the scarcely be said to diversify the scene. In these wastes internal fires growing fiercer and fiercer, the contents no springs of water refresh the traveller, who, as in the of the caldrons have boiled over, and consumed and deserts of Arabia, must carry a supply along with him. corroded every green thing they touched. No bird, no beast, scarcely even a plant or humble moss If during their periods of repose the numerous rolrelieves the tedium of the journey, or expels the feeling i canic mountains of Iceland are objects of high interest of loneliness that weighs upon his spirit. Where the to the traveller, how intensely painful does that interest internal fires have been most active, hills are tossed on become when they are aroused from the torpor perhaps hills in inextricable confusion, of which even the tem- of centuries, and discharge their magnificent artillery pestuous ocean furnishes but a faint image. In other over the devoted land around them. We have numerous quarters magnificent glaciers of green transparent ice records of these eruptions, every one of which is a tale occur, whilst the volcanic scoriæ with which they are of terror; but our space will not allow us to do more often mixed, exhibit a strange contrast, though one
than refer briefly to the eruption of the Skaptar Jökul, strikingly characteristic of this land, where fire and ice in 1783*. seemu ever conjuined, and, yet ever contending for the The winter preceding this year had been unusually mastery*
mild, but nothing seemed to foretell approaching danger, * From a skilfully compiled article on Iceland, contained in a recent * A detailed account of this, as well as several other eruptions, Fill bo volume of the Edinburgh Cabinet Library.
found in the rolume already named.
till towards the end of May, when a light bluish fog i most luxuriant herbage. Small unknown insects covered was seen floating along the ground, succeeded in the many of the fields, whilst other portions of the soil, early part of June by earthquakes, which increased daily formerly the most fertile, were changed by the ashes in violence till the 8th of that month. At nine on the into marshy wastes, overgrown with moss and equiseta. morning of that day, numerous pillars of smoke were A disease, resembling scurvy in its most malignant type, seen rising in the hill-country towards the north, attacked both men and cattle, occasioned in the former, no which, gradually gathering into a dark mass, obscured doubt, by the scarcity of food, and the miserable, often the air, and proceeding southerly, against the wind, disgusting, nature of that which alone they could obtain, involved the district of Sida in darkness, showering | Many ate of the bodies of those animals which had sand and ashes to the thickness of an inch, This cloud perished from hunger or disease, whilst others had continued to increase till the 10th, when fire-spouts were recourse to boiled skins, or substances still more nauobserved in the mountains accompanied by earthquakes. seous and unwholesome. The numerous earthquakes, Next day the large river Skaptaa totally disappeared. with the ashes and other matter thrown into the sea, On the 12th, a huge current of lava burst from one caused the fish to desert many parts of the coast, whilst side of the volcano, and rushed with a loud crashing the fishermen seldom daring to leave the land, enveloped noise down the channel of the river, which it not only in thick clouds during most of the summer, were thus filled, but overflowed, though in many places from 400 deprived of their usual stock of winter provisions. This to 600 feet deep, and 200 broad. The devastating frightful catalogue of evils occasioned the loss of 1300 progress of the fiery stream over the low country was, human beings, 19,488 horses, 6801 horned cattle, and for a few days, intercepted by a lake, but the basin was 129,937 sheep. This is the most moderate calculation. at length filled, and the burning flood proceeded onwards Stephenson, who wrote an account of the eruption, gives in two directions: one to the east, where its progress was much higher numbers, which however are thought to be for a short time interrupted by the Skalafiall, up which, exaggerated. bowever, the stream forced its way, rolling the mossy covering of the mountain before it like a large piece of cloth. The other current proceeded southward, passing
ANAMORPHOSES. ører some old laya which again began to burn. Rivers AMONG those optical phenomena which are calculated were made to boil, and these destroyed many spots which
to deceive, when considered by the aid of the eye only, the fire had spared. Here the liquid matter continued to there is one of a very curious kind called Anamorphosis, fox till the 20th of July, and, following chiefly the a term derived from two Greek words signify a distortion course of the Skaptaa, it at length poured over the lofty of figure. The phenomenon consists in this, that a cataract of Stapafoss, and filled up the enormous cavity
distorted and grotesque figure, out of all regular proporbelow. During the whole of this eruption the air was
tion when yiewed in a customary way, shall become filled with noxious vapours, or darkened with clouds of symmetrical and regular when viewed from a particular ashes, by which the sun was either concealed from the point. We shall select one example, and illustrate by its miserable inhabitants, or appeared like a blood-red globe means how such optical puzzles may be produced geomewhich increased their terror and dismay.
trically. The fury of this volcanic storm had been so long Take any subject at pleasure, say a portrait of a female confined to the Skaptaa, that the inhabitants of the head, as in fig. 1, and of small size. Divide it vertically eastern district on the Hverfisflist, though greatly in- and horizontally with parallel lines, of which the outer commoded by showers of ashes, hoped to escape its shall all form the boundary A B C D, and the whole shall be more immediate visitations. But on the 28th of June a equidistant. Then, on a separate piece of paper or cardcloud of sand and smoke caused so thick a darkness board, prepare a drawing similar to fig. 2, by the following that objects within doors could not be distinguished; means. Draw a horizontal line ab, equal to A B, and whilst red-hot stones and dust burned up the pastures, divide it into as many equal parts as the latter is divided. poisoned the waters, and threatened to set fire to the Let fall a perpendicular line e v, from the middle of a b, dwellings. On the 3rd of August, a thick vapour arose
and then draw s v parallel to a b. Both ev and s v may from the Hverfisflist, its waters entirely disappeared, and be any length at pleasure; but the longer the first is, and on the 9th a foaming fire-stream rushed furiously down the shorter the other, so will the anamorphosis be more ts bed, overflowing the country in one night to the and more deformed; the proportions in our figures are extent of more than four miles. The eruptions con
sufficiently different. tinued till the end of August, when the whole catas- After having drawn from the point v, right lines trophe closed with a violent earthquake,
v l, v 2, v 3, v 4, to the divisions of a b, draw the line The destructive effects of this volcano were not con- sb, and through each point where sb intersects the fined to its immediate vicinity: vast quantities of sand divergent lines, draw other horizontal lines paralled to and ashes were scattered over the remoter parts of the a b. We shall thus have a trapezium, ab c d, divided island, and some were conveyed to the Faroe Islands, a into as many cells as the square in fig. 1. The next distance of nearly 300 miles. The noxious vapours that step is, to fill up all the cells of fig. 2, with portions of for many months infected the air were equally per- the device proportionate to their position in fig. 1. For Dicious to man and east, and covered the whole island instance, in fig. 1, the nose is in the second vertical with a dense fog, which obscured the sun, and was division from the left, and in the third and fourth hori. perceptible even in England and Holland. The steam zontal divisions from the top; and that portion of the rising from the crater, or exhaled from the boiling waters
, face must accordingly be placed in a corresponding was condensed in the cooler regions of the atmosphere, part of fig. 2. But it will obviously be necessary to and deseended in floods that deluged the fields and con
the more solidated the ashes into a thick black crust. A fall of numerous the divisions, both horizontal and vertical, the snow in the middle of June, and frequent showers more readily will this be effected. The easiest way is, of hailstones of unusual magnitude, accompanied with to make the points of intersection, of the horizontal and tremendous thunder-storms, tearing up huge fragments vertical lines, fall on corresponding parts of the face in of rock, and rolling them down into the plains, completed the figures; after which the other portions can be filled in. the scene of desolation. The grass and other plants By these means we procure the anainorphosis seen withered, and became so brittle that the weight of a in fig. 2, which, when viewed from a particular position, Ban's foot reduced them to powder; and even where the will lose all its distortion, and assume an appearance pastures seemed to have recoyered, the cattle refused to resembling that in fig. 1. This position lies immediately touch them, dying of actual starvation in the midst of over the point v, and at a height above it equal to the
introduce great distortion of figure; and