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EDINBURGH LITERARY MISCELLANY,
For AUGUST 1813.
Description of the AQUEDUCT BRIDGE over the River KELVIN,
E, this month, exhibit a View, engraved after a beautiful drawing of Mr Williams, of the great Aqueduct Bridge over the Kelvin. This is a work truly stupendous, and one of those which do the greatest honour to British ingenuity. In the execution of that grand national undertaking, the Forth and Clyde Canal, the river Kelvin, crossing the tract by which it was carried, presented the most formidable obstacle. It has been overcome, however, by the construction of the present bridge, which was planned by Mr Whitwer, and executed by Mr Gibb. The foundation of it was laid June 15, 1787, and it was finished in April 1791. It is carried over a valley 400 feet long, and 65 deep. It stands upon four arches of mason work, each 50 feet wide and 37 high, the entire height from the bed of the river to the top of the bridge is about 89 feet. The length is 350 feet, and the breadth 57. The canal is about 56 feet wide at the surface, 27
your excellent correspondent Civis, in the last Number of the Magazine; for, with much pleasantry, and sly irony, he has turned to ridicule one of the most absurd and filthy plans that ever entered into the minds of Magistrates to conceive. And I conjecture that, partly in consequence of his raillery, a slight improvement is already perceptible in the aspect of the edifice in question, although I remark that the rites of the Goddess are still there'celebrated.
dred dust within that Church, where
"Downward to climb, and backward to ad-
have (truth to speak) rendered themselves at least conspicuous, if not im mortal, by the act of transforming "the House of the Lord into a den of thieves!"
So far as Civis has proceeded, he has done well. He has brought a charge of folly against certain persons, of whom I should be glad to see any defence attempted. But my object at present in obtruding on you this paper, is of a more general nature. It not only embraces the views of Civis, but arraigns the whole of that conduct which placed the Police Office under the hallowed roof of St Giles's Cathedral. I have heard that the expence attending this alteration is little less than £.1000 sterling; whilst a convenient office, long occupied and well fitted up, has been deserted. I have heard it also stated, that the present situation of the Signet-Office might have been procured in a short time, (if a change was to be desired) as the hall appropriated to that purpose in the new buildings is nearly finished.
Another circumstance, although of no great importance, must not pass unnoticed. During the preparations for founding some of the division walls, it became necessary, not only to remove the Turf stones, (on one of which, in large Saxon characters, appears the name of James Halyburton,) but to dig up the mouldering remains, doubtless, of many respectable individuals who had been interred within Edinburgh, 26 Aug. 1813.
the walls of the Cathedral,-considerable parts of which found their way to a more airy situation, by the side of
the earthen mound! Whether the bones of these persons were peacefully suffered to mingle with their kin
But turn we from a subject at once so disgusting and so melancholy, and let us hope soon to hear of an application being made public, for the best plan of a new north-façade in corresponding taste for our venerable Cathedral ;-for the removal of the Police-Office from the body of a Church ;-and let this matchless instance of absurdity in its projectors, -sink in sorrows with a tolling bell" ARCHEOPHILUS.
COMMERCIAL INTELLIGENCE. THE following is the report of the
Deputation appointed to oppose the claim of the East India Company for the renewal of their Charter.
'The deputies from the principal sea ports and manufacturing districts of Great Britain and Ireland, assembled in London, to oppose the renewal of the East India Company's com commercial monopoly, think that they are required, at this the close of their public cuties, to submit some account of the progress and ultimate result of their endeavours, in the service of their constituents.
'When the deputation was last year appointed, to convey to government those general sentiments which the commercial interests of the country have throughout this discussion expressed, with equal moderation and. perseverance, they found it was proposed to confine the trade from India to the port of London, and to the warehouses of the East India Company. They urged the injustice and impolicy of such an arrangement, and they had the satisfaction to convince the comprehensive and candid mind of the right honourable Spencer Perceval, and the members of that administration with whom he acted, of the truth and soundness of their arguments; but the further discussion of the India question was deferred, and the melancholy catastrophe which soon after took place, deprived the country of that able minister, and the advocates for a free trade of a powerful supporter.
Early in the present year, in compliance with the wishes of their constituents, the deputation again assembled, and proceeded to renew their application, on the part of the country, to government and to the legislature. It would be unnecessary here to repeat the different steps which they have since found it adviseable to take, and which have been regularly communicated to the different towns, cities, and districts, represented in the deputation.
The East India Company,and the learned counsel by whom they were assisted, brought before the select
committee of the House of Commons a great number of respectable witnesses, chiefly taken from the various departments of their service, most of them men bound by gratitude to the company, of whom it may, therefore, be supposed, without any uncandid imputation, either upon the individuals themselves or upon those who brought them forward, that they were selected from a knowledge that their opinions were peculiarly favourable to the cause which their testimony was produced to support. The evidence of these gentlemen was given with great ability; but lity; but many of the facts, to which it was directed, were irrelevant to the points at issue-others were strongly in support of the arguments for a free trade; and the predictions of danger were founded upon the supposition of an unrestricted intercourse, which was never contended for on behalf of the petitioners. Indeed the whole evidence appeared to the deputation completely to fail in making out a case of necessity strong enough to justify the renewal of so oppressive a monopoly.
'The deputation have, in the course of the last and of the present year, been long and diligently employed in collecting facts, and arranging evidence in support of the rights of the country. Of the effect which this was calculated to produce, it would not now become them to speakthey felt it to be a sacrifice to withhold what had been so laboriously collected; but when they considered the slight impression which appeared to have been made on the legislature, and on the public, by the opposite evidence the risk of protracting the question beyond the present session of parliament and the evil that would be occasioned to all the great interests concerned, if they were left another year in suspence and uncertainty, they were convinced that they should best discharge their duty by declining to call any evidence, and by resting the claims of the public on the gene
ral principles on which the petitions were founded. This resolution was unanimously adopted, after mature consideration, and it was confirmed by the high parliamentary authorities, whom the deputation had time and opportunity to consult.
The pretensions of the country, both in justice and policy, to participate in the tea trade, and intercourse with China, have been urged in every practicable way-by remonstrance to government; by representations to the different members; by the eloquence and argument of their friends in parliament; and by two divisions of the House of Commons. These attempts have, however, been unsuccessful, and the deputation can only regret that the legislature have otherwise decided.'
powers of Europe, by which the Ot toman government is compelled to adhere to the letter of her ancient concessions, far from generous, if indeed perfectly just. With regard to another complaint of the merchants, viz. the inequality of the duties imposed by the French and English tariffs, he mentions the disposition of the Turkish ministry to remedy that grievance, and as a proof, states that the difference continued to be placed to the debit of the French merchants in the custom-house books; a circumstance so disagreeable to several of the latter, that they prefer paying the same duties as the English.
By the last accounts from Constantinople, it appears that the Turkish government have imposed an additional duty on the importation of cotton twist. The merchants had memorialised the British minister, Mr Liston, upon the subject, and he accordingly remonstrated in their behalf, but the answer of the Turkish ministry was, that if the British merchants insisted on the strict letter of the tariff of 1805, according to which imports and exports on their account are subject to a rate of only three per cent. the officers of the customs should be directed to levy the duty in kind, which alternative is stipulated by the existing treaties. Mr Liston, in a letter to Mr Morier, the consul, communicating the above answer, intimated an earnest wish that the merchants would comply with the demand of the Turkish government, as otherwise it might precipitate a change of its commercial system with us, as well as all the European powers-a measure which he says has been for some time silently meditating, and which he considers to be not unreasonable, deeming the tacit combination among the principal
A Glasgow paper says, that according to the present prices, includ ing the duties to government, the following is the value of the colonial produce imported into the Clyde, by the late fleets, viz. sugar £.1,119,225; rum, £.553,394; cotton, £.170,174; coffee, £.152,600.--All other produce, £.207,015.-Total £.2,202,411.
Memoirs of the Progress of Manufac tures, Chemistry, Science, and the Fine Arts.
THAT ingenious mechanic Mr T.
Sheldrake, has been long engaged on the means of impelling vessels on the water by machinery, to be set in motion by the human arm, or by the powers of steam, as occasion may require. His design is to produce cov ered boats which will carry 50 or 60 passengers, and be impelled by two or three men with such velocity as will enable them to make an average pas sage from Richmond to London in as little time as the stages go in, if not less. This will accommodate the public with a more comfortable conveyance than a stage coach, and at two-thirds of the expense. These boats being established, larger ones may be made to be driven by steam,
to any extent that may be required. There is a peculiarity in this invention that will be of advantage in every department of inland navigation, even Supposing the steam system should not be adopted, by which it is expected that one half the labour that is now expended in every department of inland navigation may be saved, by adding this improvement to the vessels that are at present employed. We learn, too, that Steam Monthly Memoranda in Natural Hisboats are already in use on the river Aire.
A curious stoney concretion, obtained from an elm tree in Hyde Park, has lately been analyzed by Dr Thomson, and found to consist of the carbonates of potash and of lime, with a small quantity of carbonate of magnesia. This morbid matter is, no doubt, the same as that usually deposited upon the edges of the ulcers of old trees, and which was subjected to the examination of M. Vauquelin some years ago, whose report as to its composition agrees with that we have just given.
The same able British chemist has likewise discovered a new vegetable principle exuding from the trunk of the oak, the most characteristic property of which is that of precipitating zinc from its solutions of a black colour, whereas the precipitate of the same metal, when thrown down by other substances, is white. In most other respects this new substance very much resembles the peculiar exudation from the elm, to which the name of ulmin has been given, and it has therefore been denominated ulmin of the oak; although we think the term quercin might, with greater propriety, have been employed.
Dr Reid Clanny, of Sunderland, has invented a lamp for the effectual prevention of those shocking accidents which are still so frequent in coal mines, notwithstanding the advantages of ventilation. The lamp is very simple in its construction, and very strong,
while, at the same time, the flame is so completely isolated from the atmosphere, that no more air can explode at a time than the lamp contains; and the direct communication with the surrounding atmosphere being thus cut off, all chance of such accidents is prevented.
CAR-ROCK. This very dangerous rock
lies in the sea, about a mile and a half eastward from Fifeness, or the most easterly point of Fifeshire. It is thus directly in the track of vessels entering or leaving the Frith of Forth, in coming from or going to the north of Scotland. It is a remarkable fact, that on this fatal rock no fewer than four vessels were either stranded or totally lost between November and February last. The Bell Rock was formerly the dread of the mariner, and to avoid it, he kept a good offing; but from the erection of the admirable light-house on that rock, it has now become his most certain guide, (the coal light on the May island still remaining unimproved.) It is possible that the confidence thus inspired by the Bell Rock light-house, may have led some vessels incautiously to approach Fifeness, till they were unexpectedly ruined on the Car. However this may be, the Car-rock now remains the only considerable obstruction to the navigation of our Frith.
The frequent occurrence of accidents at this point, did not fail to attract the attention of the Commissioners for Northern lights, (who deserve the highest praise for the unremitting diligence with which they discharge the duties of their gratuitous offices,) several years ago; and induced them to cause a very large buoy to be moored near to it: but notwithstanding that a very strong iron chain and a