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either of eggs or orange marmalade. The surprise express-
ed by his master at their sumptuous repast, gave great de-
light to the servant, who seemed to let no opportunity slip
of making himself useful, or agreeable. On their return to
Mull, a vessel was hired to take them on to the isle of Skye,
one of the best cultivated of the Western Isles. Here they
were hospitably entertained by an old friend of the Doctor,
who undertook to shew them the basaltic cave, at the east
end of the island, in which the unfortunate and ill-advised
Pretender found shelter with his faithful guide, after his dis-
astrous defeat at Culloden. This island abounds in deer
and black cattle; and though in many parts mountainous,
it contains many fine tracts of level country. It also pro-
duces limestone, marble, and so forth. The narrow chan-
nel which divides it from Inverness, to which it belongs, is
so shallow at low water, that the cattle are made to swim
'across it. It was the intention of our travellers to have
visited Lewes, but having learnt that it contained nothing
particularly attractive, that the country was wild, barren of
wood, and but little cultivated, they resolved on sailing im-
mediately for the Orkneys. Upon arriving at Pomona, they
resolved on making some stay in these islands. The ancient
Gothic cathedral at Kirkwall, which is now converted into
a paristi church, is a particularly fine butiaing: Ito ruot to
supported by 14 pillars on each side, and its steeple, in
which is a good ring of bells, by four large pillars; the
three gates of the church are chequered with red and white
ateros, emhossed and elegantly flowered. While they were
in Pomona, they heard that a vessel, pouna ror Iceland and
Greenland, had been obliged to put into one of the Orkneys
to refit.

“ I do not say this is a fortunate circumstance for the cap. tain of that vessel or his passengers, but it is so for us, Edward,” said Dr. Walker, when he heard this intelligence. “ You know the old saying, 'It is an ill wind that blows nobody any good:' now, if you have any inclination to see the wonders of Iceland, we will be off immediately."

“ With all my heart, Sir,” replied his pupil, “I am ready to attend

you wherever you will go.”
“ And what says Colin ?” added the Doctor.

Colin will gang a’ the world o’er wi' ye,” replied the Highlander.

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As we are all agreed then," resumed his master, pack up our goods, Colin, and for fear of accidents, let us pay our reckoning and depart.”

The captain of the vessel very willingly consented to take them on board. They were not provided with furs and particularly warm clothing, but the master of the vessel having a good store on board, he said he could supply them as they advanced towards the arctic regions.

CHAPTER V.

VOYAGE TO ICELAND.

SECTION I.

INTRODUCTION-AURORA BOREALIS-SEASONS AND

CLIMATES.

Every thing being thus amicably arranged, and the wind setting fair, thay quitted the Orknoyo, and preparod to en. counter the piercing cold of Iceland. 6. You of course know," said Doctor Walker to his pupil, “ that Iceland ex. tends as far north as the sixty-seventh degree of N. lat. that it belongs to Denmark, and that it is only accessible at one season of the year. nuout the ninth century, a Norwegian colony settled in this island; upon their arrival they found it inhabited by Christians, whom they called Papas ; it is also said that these Norwegians found among the inhabitants Irish books, bells and crosiers; and it is therefore conjeotured, that Iceland was peopled by the inhabitants of the British isles. The Icelanders are an honest well-informed people; industrious, and very faithful and obliging. Thus you see, Edward, that although the climate we are about to visit is cold and inhospitable, yet the human beings who inhabit it, are not deficient in those points of character, which tend to the comfort and well being of society. Their chief employment is that of fishing and taking care of their cattle, and the women prepare the fish, and sew and spin. Some of the men work at mechanic trades, and a very few in gold

and silver. Their love of their country is so great that the most advantageous offers will not tempt them to settle at Copenhagen. They are also most religiously inclined, and never cross a river, or any dangerous place, without taking off their hats, and imploring the Divine protection. They are extremely fond of the study of history, and in their social' meetings, the master of the house begins, and when he is tired another continues the reading. They also play chess remarkably well, and one of their pastimes consists in reciting verses. The dross of the lower order is composed of a coarse black cloth, called Wambol, that of superior classes of fine broad cloth, ornamented with silver."

About the third evening of their voyage, as they were upon deck, Edward was surprised and delighted with an extraordinary illumination in the heavens, which darting in various directions from the horizon up towards the centre of the vast concave above them, presented a scene totally new to our youthful traveller. “ See, Sir," said he, « what beautiful colours, and how rapidly they change their hue, and dart in such fantastic forms over that calm deep blue ether!” « Why,” said the Doctor smiling, “the aurora borealis appears to have given you a new language. You have heard of the Northern Lights ?”

“Yes,” replied his pupil, “ but I had formed no idea of their exquisite beauty." Pray, Sir, will you have the goodness to explain the cause of them ?”

Dii. WALKER.—" The aurora borealis is that shining light which is often seen by night in the heavens, and which the vulgar call northern lights, or streamers.

“ This phenomenon was thought to be the result of certain nitrous and sulphureous vapours, thinly spread through the atmosphere above the clouds, where they ferment, and taking fire, the explosion of one portion kindles the next, and the flashes succeed one another, till all the vapour is set on fire, the streams whereof seem to converge towards the zenith of the spectator, or that point of the heavens which is immediately over his head. But the aurora borealis is now supposed to be an electrical phenomenon ; and its flashes of light seem to proceed from the electric fluid, while it is condensed in passing in the columns of elevated vapour.

“ The spectacle has vanished, Sir, with your description,”! observed Edward, as the Doctor concluded his remarks.

“ Yes," replied his tutor, “ and as I begin to feel rather colder than is agreeable, we will retire to our cabin if you please.”

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DR. WALKER." You are aware that no vessel has ever yet penetrated to the north or south poles, but you are not perhaps aware that the oqulliern latitudes are considerably rolder than those of the same latitude in the north. For in. stance, Glasgow is situated just about the same latitude north, as that in which Cape Horn is found in the south, And yet, the winter days of the former are not, in general, so cold as the summer days of the latter. This difference is hardly to be accounted for, unless we attribute the intense cold of the south frigid zone to the entire absence of land, at least as far as we know, in those regions, or even in the south temperate zone, compared to the vast continents which are found in the northern hemisphere. One other reason may contribute, in some degree, to this difference. The north pole from the eccentricity of the earth's orbit, is turned towards the sun eight or ten days longer than the south pole. But this reasoning is little better than an hypothesis. But it may not be amiss, as we are about to visit the different regions of the earth, to take a more accurate survey of its climates and seasons.

“ The axis of the earth makes an angle of 23° 28' with a perpendicular to the plane of its orbit; and keeps always the same oblique direction throughout its annual course; hence it follows, that during one part of its course, the north pole is turned towards the sun, and, during another part of its course, the south pole' is turned towards it in the same proportion ; which is the cause of the different seasons, as spring, summer, autumn, and winter.

“ The seasons in the torrid zone are very different from what we observe in the temperate zone.

“ As it is summer with us when the sun is nearest our zenith, it has by some been imagined that the inhabitants of the torrid zone have double seasons; namely, two summers, because the sun is twice vertical to them,-two autumns, when he is returning, &c. But in many places a torrent of rain follows the course of the sun, and the worst season is

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when the sun is vertical ; the only distinction of seasons within the tropics, therefore, is from hot and dry, to hot and rainy; most countries in the torrid zone having six months inclining to a wet, and six months inclining to a dry air.

“ On the western coast of Africa, at Sierra Leone, the dry season is from September to June, and the wet from June to October. About the end of June the rains increase, accompanied with dreadful storms of thunder and lightning

6. On the gold coast, the rainy seasons last from April to October; and in the kingdom of Congo, from the end of March to the middle of September. The greatest quantity of rain generally falls about mid.day.

66 The seasons on the eastern coast are the reverse of those on the western : the winter, or rainy season, in Sofala, Mozambique, and Zanguebar, is from September to February. In Egypt rain is a very uncommon phenomenon, yet a large portion of Grand Cairo was lately (1817) washed away by a dreadful torrent of rain.

“ In Abyssinia, the climate, though hot, is tempered by the mountainous nature of the country. From April to September there are heavy rains. These rains, added to the melting of the snows on the mountains, occasion the overflowing of the Nile.

“ In Bengal, the hot or dry season begins with March, and continues to the end of May: the intense heat is sometimes interrupted by violent thunder storms. The rainy season continues from June to September ; the three last months of the year are generally pleasant, but excessive fogs prevail in January and February. By the latter end of July, all the lower parts of Bengal are overflowed, and form an inundation of more than a hundred miles in width, nothing appearing but villages and trees, excepting, very rarely, the top of an elevated spot appearing like an island.

“ The chains of the Gauts, running from north to south along the western peninsula of India, intercept great masses of clouds, and produce opposite seasons on the coasts of Malabar and Coromandel. The rainy season, on the coast of Coromandel, is with the N. E. monsoon, or from October to April; and on that of Malabar with the S. W. monsoon, or from May to September. In the month of September the navigation on the Malabar coast is open, and ships begin to sail from the Malabar shore to all parts of the world.

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