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Art. V.-Note on the River Goomtee, with a section of its bed.-By
V. TREGEAR, Esq. Jounpore. The accompanying section of the River Goomtee was taken about 20 miles (in a direct line) from its mouth, abreast of the village of Mye, at a time when the slowness and shallowness of the stream rendered the work one of neither labour nor difficulty. The depths were taken at every three feet, in a horizontal line perpendicular to the direction of the current, which runs here nearly due East. The rate on the 4th March last was one mile and 640 yards per hour-on the 13th June it was three miles an hour, and this latter I think the average velocity during the rains ;-it is however sometimes much greater, probably nearly five miles, but at others much less, and occasionally when the Ganges rises much and suddenly, there is no current at all.
I have marked the highest level in ordinary seasons, but it sometimes rises considerably higher ;- last year it overflowed both banks to some distance, destroying parts of many villages and overthrowing a number of houses in the city of Jounpore ;-there, the road at the north end of the bridge was passable only by means of boats, and a large lake was formed between the city and the cantonments.
No one remembers its having ever been so high ; but it is somewhere said, that a Aeet of boats once sailed over the bridge; the natives hereabouts have no tradition of so extraordinary an inundation, which, if it really happened, must have caused much destruction ;-in fact, I think it questionable, whether the bridge could withstand the pressure to which it must have been subjected upwards and sideways, after the arches became insufficient for the passage of the water.
The water, although in appearance extremely muddy, contains but little silt, the quantity from a large portion being exceeding small in bulk, and not likely to weigh, when dry, more than a few grains.*
This river is navigable by the largest boats from about the end of June to the end of November, and by those of smaller size to Jounpore, and some distance beyond it; during the rest of the year also small boats, not too heavily laden, can I believe go up beyond Lukhnow, but the passage is, except in the height of the rains, a most tedious one, the distance by water being about three times that by land, for the river deserves its name of Goomtee, or winding. The traffic upwards
* Eighteen ounces by measure, gave seven grains only.
Infeet. greatest depth. & feet.
greatest depth. Sfeet Ourenes.
some distance, destroying parts of many villages and overthrowing a number of houses in the city of Jounpore ;-there, the road at the north end of the bridge was passable only by means of boats, and a large lake was formed between the city and the cantonments. No one remembers its having ever been so high ; but it is somewhere said, that a fleet of boats once sailed over the bridge; the natives hereabouts have no tradition of so extraordinary an inundation, which, if it really happened, must have caused much destruction ;-in fact, I think it questionable, whether the bridge could withstand the pressure to which it must have been subjected upwards and sideways, after the arches became insufficient for the passage of the water.
* Eighteen ounces by measure, gave seven grains only.
consists of stone-slabs and sugar mills from Chunar-saul wood from Gorukbpore, and grain of all kinds from the latter place and Bengal ;downwards are sent sugar, and the indigo of numerous factories about Jounpore.
I send for the Museum* some fragments of glazed earthenware, found on a slightly elevated spot in this neighbourhood. Forty years ago the place was covered with dense jungle, and large burr and peepul trees-sufficient grounds for believing the absence of human habitations for a very long period. The Hindoos have been denied the knowledge of the art of porcelain manufacture and glazing, and I am not aware of specimens like these having elsewhere been found. Hindoo can use earthen vessels but once, it is most probable that a Moosulman village once stood where these pieces are found, and very likely the art came with those for whose service such vessels would be employed. It is, however, strange that the art should have been lost, for I believe it is no where known to the natives. The fragments are of a coarse fabric and rude workmanship, but the glaze is good, and the colours very bright, considering the time they have been exposed-probably two or three hundred years ;—the blue is very bright, and seems to have been the favourite colour—the designs are not very elegant, and evidently neither Chinese nor imitations of it.
Agates and pebbles, cut and uncut, are also found, having been used I imagine in the composition of the glaze; or it may be for beads only, numbers of which are picked up. They must have been brought from a distance, as no stream producing them is to be seen on this side the Ganges, the nearest bills being opposite Benares. Could the common clay now used have been employed for the body of the ware? I fancy not, for it vitrifies and swells at a low heat, losing its shape, and adhering to whatever it touches. It is a great pity the art is lost.
Many will doubtless laugh to see them there. I was surprised, when a boy, to see in the British Museum pieces of broken glass vessels, neither handsome nor well made; but it was explained to me, that such things were valuable as specimens of the manufacture in its early days, and not according to their price as mere glass.
Art. VI.- Memoranda relative to experiments on the communication
of Telegraphic Signals by induced Electricity.--By W.B. O'SHAUGHNESSY, M. D. Assistant Surgeon ; Professor of Chemistry, Medical College, Calcutta; and Officiating Joint-Secretary to the Asiatic Society of Bengal.
There are few projects which at first sight appear so visionary as those which promise practical benefit to mankind through the agency of electrical operations. From the dawning of knowledge in this science, pretenders of every grade have found it a free field for their speculations: and hence perhaps it arises that the sober and practical part of society generally regard with distrust, the multitudes of projects which electricians are constantly advancing.
We nevertheless find that many eminent philosophers—whose habits of cautious research, have been proved by their numerous contributions to the mass of general science—such men as Brande, Faraday, Wheatstone, and Fox--are amongst the foremost, who predict many real advantages to the community from the application of the mysterious, though readily controllable forces which electricity places at our command. I am aware that I am less entitled than many ot
to have my inferences from electrical data attended to with confidence, having at least on one occasion fallen into the error of indulging prematurely in dreams of useful results, and of reasoning unguardedly from the model to the machine. Still I believe that the experiments detailed in this paper, will be found to admit fairly of the consequences to which they seem to me to lead. They appear to me conclusive as to the perfect practicability of establishing, at a cheap rate, telegraphical communications, acting through electrical agencies, certain and infallible in their indications, perceptible alike by night and day, in all varieties of weather and season, and, lastly, so swift in their nature, that the greatest distances concerned bear scarcely any appreciable proportion to the inconceivably brief period in which the signal can be conveyed.
I was induced to institute the experiments detailed in this paper, by the statements I had read in several periodicals regarding similar attempts in England and the continents of Europe and America, and the actual patenting and adoption by the directors of the London and Birmingham railway of a similar plan by Professor Wheatstone, of the King's College, London.
Before entering into details regarding my experiments, which were carried on in the Botanical Gardens of Calcutta, during May of this