Pagina-afbeeldingen
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In the very

The lips

the middle, from whence they gradual- arch-formed by the whalebone. It is ly dimidisb away to nothing at each incapable of protrusion, being fixed extremity, Fifteen feet is the greatest from root to tip, to the fat extending belength of the whalebone ; but 10 or 11 tween the jaw-bones. A slight beard, feet is the average size, and 13 feet is consisting of a short' scattered white a magnitude seldom met with. The hair, sormounts the anterior extremity greatest breadth, which is at the gum, of both jaws. The throat is remarkais 10 or 12 inches. The laminæ, bly strait. composing the two series of bone, are Two paps in the female, afford thie ranged side by side, two thirds of an means of rearing its young.

The milk inch apart, (thickness of the blade in- of the whale resembles that of quadrucluded,) and resemble a frame of saws, peds in its appearance. It is şaid to be in a saw.mill. The interior edges rich and well-flavoured. are covered with a fringe of bair, and Immediately beneath the skin lies the the exterior edge of every blade, ex- blubber or fat, encompassing the whole cepting a few at each extremity of the body of the animal, together with the series, is curved and flattened down, so fins and tail. Its colour is yellowishas to present a smooth sursace to the white, yellow, or red. lips. In some whales, a curious bol- young animal it is always yellowishlow on one side, and ridge on the oth- white. In some old animals, it resemer, occurs in many of the central blades bles in colour the substance of the salof whalebope, at regular intervals of 6 mon. It swims in water. Its thickor 7 inches. May not this irregularity, ness all round the body, is 8 or 10 to 20 like the rings in the horns of the ox, inches, varying in different parts as well which they resemble, afford an intima- as in different individuals. tion of the age of the whale? If so, are composed almost entirely of blubber, twice the number of running feet in the and yield from one to two tons of pure longest laminæ of whalebone in the oil each. The tongue is chiefly comhead of a whale not full grown, would posed of a soft kind of fat, that affords represent its

age
in

years. In the less oil than any other blubber ; io the youogest whales, called suckers, the centre of the tongue, and towards the whalebone is only a few inches long; root, this fat is intermixed with fibres when the length reaches 6 feet or up- of a muscular substance. The under wards, the whale is said to be size. jaw, excepting the two jaw-bones, conThe colour of the whalebone is brown- sists almost wholly of fat; and the isb-black, or bluish-black. In some crown-bone possesses a considerable animals, it is striped longitudinally with coating of it. The fins are principally white. When Dewly cleaned, the sur- blubber, tendons, and bones; and the face exhibits a fine play of colour. A tail possesses a thin stratum of blubber. large whale sometimes affords a ton and The oil appears to be retained in the a balf of whalebone. If the “sample blubber in minute cells, connected 10blade," that is, the largest lamina in the gether by a strong reticulated combinaseries, weigh 7 pounds, the whole prod- tion of tendinous fibres. The blubber, uce may be estimated at a ton; and so jo its fresh state, is without any unpleason in proportion. The whalebope is ant smell*; and it is not until after the inserted into the crown-bone, in a sort termination of the voyage, when the of rabbit. All the blades in the same cargo is unstowed, that a Greenland series are connected together by the gum, ship becomes disagreeable. in which the thick ends are inserted. Four tons of blubber by measure, This substance, the gum,) is white, generally afford three tons of oil; but fibrous, tender,and tasteless. It cuts like the blubber of a sucker contains a cheese. It has the appearance of the very small proportion. Wbales have interior or kernel of the cocoa-nut. been caught that afforded nearly thirty

The tongue occupies a large propor- tons of pure oil; and whales yielding tion of the cavity of the mouth, and the twenty tons of oil, are by no means

uncommon. The quantity of oil yield- long time down. They respire or blow ed by a wbale, generally bears a certain about four or five times a-minute. proportion to the length of its longest The usual rate at which whales blade of wbalebone.

swim, even when they are on their pasA stout whale of sixty feet in length, sage from one situation to another, selis of the enormous weight of seventy dom exceeds four miles an bour; and tons ; the blubber weighs about though, when urged by the sight of any thirty tons, the bones of the head, enemy, or alarmed by the stroke of a whalebone, fins and tail, eight or ten; harpoon, their extreme velocity may carcass thirty or thirty-two.

bo at the rate of eight or nine miles an The flesh of the young whale is of a hour: yet we fiod this speed never red colour; and when cleared of fat, continues longer than for a few minutes, broiled, and seasoned with pepper and before it relaxes almost to one-half

. salt, does not eat unlike coarse beef; Hence, for the space of a few mioutes, that of the old whale approaches to they are capable of darting through the black, and is exceedingly coarse. Ao water, with the velocity almost of the iminense bed of muscles surrounding fastest ship under sail, and of ascending the body, is appropriated chiefly to the with such rapidity as to leap entirely movements of the tail.

out of the water. This feat they someThe number of ribs, according to times perform as an amusement apparSir Charles Giesecké, is thirteen on ently, to the high admiration of the diseach side. The bones of the fins are tant spectator; but to the no small teranalogous, both in proportion and num- ror of the unexperienced fishers who, ber, to those of the fingers of the hu- even under such circumstances, are of man hand.

From this peculiarity of ten ordered, by the foolbardy barpoonstructure, the fins have been denomina- er, to “pull away” to the attack. ted by Dr. Flemming," swimming Sometimes the whales throw themselves paws.' The posterior extremity of the into a perpendicular posture, with their whale, bowever, is a real tail; ihe ter- heads downward, and, rearing their mipation of the spine or os coccygis, tails on high in the air, beat the water running through the iniddle of it almost with awful violence. In both these to the edge.

cases, the sea is thrown into foam, and The whale seems dull of hearing. A the air filled with vapours; the noise, poise in the air, such as that produced in calm weather, is beard to a great disby a person shouting, is not noticed by tance; and the concentric waves prodoit, though at the distance only of a ship's ced by the concussions on the water, length; but a very slight splashing in are communicated abroad to a considthe water, in calm weather, excites its erable extent, Sometimes the wbale attention, and alarms it. Its sense of shakes its tremendous tail in the air, seeing is acute. Whales are observed which, cracking like a whip, resounds to discover one another, in clear water, to the distance of two or three miles. when under the surface, at an amazing When it retires from the surface, it distance. When at the surface, however, first lifts its head, then plongiog it under

they do not see far. They have no voice; water, elevates its back like the segment but in breathing or blowing, they make of a sphere, deliberately rounds it away

very loud noise. The vapour they towards the extremity, throws its fail discharge, is ejected to the height of out of the water, and then disapSorne yards, and appears at a distance, pears. like a puff of smoke. When the ani. In their usual conduct, whales remals are wounded, it is often stained main at the surface to breathe, about with blood; and, on the approach of two minutes, seldom longer; during death, jets of blood are sometimes dis- which time, they “blow" eight or nine charged alone, They blow strongest, times, and then descend for an interval densest, and loudest, when“ running," usually of five or ten minutes; but when in a state of alarm, or when they sometimes, when feeding, fifteen or first appear at the surface, after being a twenty. The depth to which they

or at

commonly descend, is not known, rious species of actiniæ, cliones, sepiæ, though from the “eddy" occasionally medusæ, cancri, and belices; observed on the water, it is evidently, least some of these genera are always at times, only trifling. But, when to be seen whenever any tribe of whales struck, the quantity of line they some- is found stationary and feeding. In the times take out of the boats, in a perpen- dead animals, however, in the very few dicular descent, affords a good meas- instances in which I have been enabled ure of the depth. By this rule, they to open their stomacbs, squillæ or have been known to descend to the shrimps were the only substances disdepth of an English mile; and with covered. In the mouth of a whale just such velocity, that instances have killed, I once found a quantity of the occurred, in which whales have been same kiod of insect. drawn up by the line attached, When the whale feeds, it swims with from a depth of 700 or 800 fathoms, considerable velocity below the surface and have been found to have broken of the sea, with its jaws widely extendtheir jaw-bones, and sometimes crown- ed. A stream of water consequently bone, by the blow struck against the enters its capacious mouth, and along bottom. Some persons are of opinion, with it, large quantities of water insects; that whales can remain under a field of the water escapes again at the sides ; ice, or at the bottom of the sea, ia shal- but the food is entangled and sisted as low water, when undisturbed, for many it were, by tbe whalebone, which, from hours at a time. Whales are seldom its compact arrangement, and the thick found sleeping: yet, in calm weather, internal covering of hair, does not allow among ice, instances occasionally occur. a particle the size of the smallest grain

The food of the whale consists of va- to escape.

LETTERS FROM TRIPOLI.*

From the Literary Gazette.

the cessful attack of the fleet under occurred, or in which the manners and Lord Exmouth, bas, in addition to lib- customs described, still continue to preerating the uofortunate christian slaves, vail in all their origioal force. Such is repressed, if not entirely removed the the case with regard to the volumes besystem of piracy, which the Barbary fore us, which were written by the sispowers bad, to the disgrace of civiliza- ter-in-law of the late Mr. 'Tully, British tion, established so long ; it bas neither Consul General at the court of Tripoli; tended to produce greater confidence, between whose family and that of the nor increase to any considerable extent bashaw, the closest intimacy subsisted their commercial intercourse with the for many years. nations of Europe. Consequently no Previous to our giving any of the sinthing that is calculated to make us bet- gular anecdotes with wbich ihese letters ter acquainted with the manners and abound, our readers will perhaps be customs of the people or their govern- pleased to know something of the place ments, has by any means diminisbed, in which the author collected her matewhile the same impenetrable mystery in rials. It is thus described which religious dogmas and jealous “ Previous to entering the Bay of babits bave, hitherto concealed them, Tripoli, a few miles from the land, the only stimulates curiosity, particularly country is rendered picturesque by vatowards those works that bear internal rious tints of beautiful verdure: no obevidence of having been prepared on ject whatever seems to interrupt the

• Letters written during a Ten Years' Residence at the Court of Tripoli, &c. with coloured plates. 2 vo's. London 1820,

evenness of the soil, which is of a light to events which took place in the bashcolour, almost white, and interspersed aw's castle, we shall pass over the early with long avenues of trees ; for such is part of the first volume, descriptive of the appearance of the numerous palms the city, adjoining country, and various planted in regular rows, and kept in the traits of manners and customs, for the finest order. Their immense branches, purpose of at once introducing the readcoarse when dear, are neat and distinct er to the interior of the barem and palat a distance. The land lying low and ace, of which it forms a part. very level, the naked stems of these “ On approaching the castle of the trees are scarcely seen, and the planta- bashaw, you pass the first iotrenchtions of dates seem to extend for many ments, escorted by the bampers (the iniles in luxuriant woods and groves. On bashaw's body-guards). The castle is a dearer view, they present a more surrounded by a wall upwards of forty straggling appearance, and afford neither feet high, with battlements, embrasures, shelter nor shade from the burning at- and towers, in the old manner of fortimosphere which every where surrounds fication, and is of ancient architecture, them. The whole of the town appears much disfigured on the inside by in a semicircle, some time before reach- irregular additions made by the present ing the harbour's mouth. The extreme bashaw to contain the numerous branchwhiteness of square flat buildings cov- es of his family. Having passed thro ered with lime, which in this climate the gate, you enter the first court-yard encounters the sun's fiercest rays, is very of the castle crowded with guards, waitstriking. The baths form clusters of ing before the skiffer or hall where tbe cupolas very large, to the number of Chiah sits all day. This is the highest eight or ten crowded together in differ- officer belonging to the Basbaw, and the ent parts of the towo. The mosques most in his confidence. He is inrested have in general a small plantation of with supreme power whenever the Indian figs and date-trees growing close basbaw is absent. No subject can apto them, which, at a distance, appearing proach the bashaw on any affairs but to be so many rich gardeos in different through him. A number of guards with parts of the town, give the whole city, black slaves and Mamelukes attend him. in the eyes of an European, an aspect Through this hall is a pared square truly novel and pleasing. On entering with a piazza supported by marble pilthe harbour, the town begins to discover lars, in which is built the messeley or dilapidations from the destructive band council chamber, where the bashaw reof time, large hills of rubbish appearing ceives his court on gala days. It is finio various parts of it. The castle, or ished on the outside with Chinese tiles, royal palace, where the bashaw resides, a number of which form an entire paint. is at the east end of the towo, within the ing. A flight of variegated marble steps walls, with a dock-yard adjoining, leads up to the door of it.” where the bey, (the bashaw's eldest son, The fair author bad not been many and heir to the throne) builds his cruis- days in Tripoli, when she had the good ers. This castle is very ancient, and is fortune to be presented at court, at enclosed by a strong bigh wall which least to the female portion of it. Lilla appears impregnable ; but it has lost all Kebbiera, or Halluma, to use a more symmetry on the inside, from the innu- poetic appellation, wife to the bashaw, merable additions made to contain the is represented as being extremely affadifferent branches of the royal family ; ble, and possessing the most insinuating for there is scarcely an instance of any manners. Though at that time forty of the blo royal, as far as the

years

of

age, she was still very handbashaw's great-grandchildren, living some, having light blue eyes and flaxen without the castle walls. These build hair. She was adored by ber subjects. ings have increased it by degrees to a The appearance of Lilla Halluma and little irregular towo."

the apartment in which the author first As our extracts will frequently relate saw her, are described as follows,

Dance,

“ The Moorish habit for mourning and beautifully inlaid tables, not higher consists only in the clothes being entire. than a foot from the ground; and ly deprived of their new appearance, amongst the sherbets was fresh pomeand the deeper the mourning is meant to granate juice, passed through the rind be, the more indifferent and even shab- of the fruit, which gave it an excellent by the clotbes: therefore when she or- flavour. After the repast, slaves attendders a new cap, which is so riclily em- ed with silver filagree censers, offering, broidered that it'is like a solid plate of at the same time, towels with gold ends gold, she never puts it on till it has pass- wove in them near half a yard deep.” ed through water before her, and all the beauty of it destroyed. She weeps Though want of room prevents our over the operation, aod her tirewomen extracting some of these anecdotes which make extempore verses on the cause of succeed the above passage, we cannot her distress. The rest of her clothes omit one illustrating the wretched state were grand,and she wore costly jewels; of the females in Barbary, where their a transparent veil of many yards, Howing very lives are in the hands, and at the carelessly about her in graceful drapery, disposal of men alternately the slaves of displayed through it the whole of her caprice and jealousy. The Tripolitan rich dress; and her figure was altogeth- ambassador to Morocco bad a Circaser majestic, with the sweetest counte- sian slave who lived near the family re

The apartment she was in was sidence, and whom he suspected of infihung with dark green velvet tapestry, delity ; but after having often threatenornamented with coloured silk damasked and as often pardoned her, she at flowers; and sentences out of the Ko- length fell a victim to the rage of a Maran were cut in silk letters and neatly meluke in the service of her lord. sewed on, forming a deep border at the top and bottom; below this, the apart “ This wretch was an enemy to bis ment was finished with tiles forming master, and an unsuccessful admirer of landscapes. The sides of the doorway, the fair Circassian. Hearing that bis and the entrance into the room, were master was engaged at an entertainment marble ; and according to the custom given by the Christians, he came to him of furnishing here, choice china and late in the evening, and worked on his crystal encircled the room on a mould. imagination till the fatal teskerar was ing near the ceiling. Close beneath obtained. The Mameluke immediately these ornaments were placed large look- rode off full speed to the garden where ing.glasses with frames of gold and sil- she resided, and had departed on the ver; the floor was covered with curious wretched errand but a few moments, mattiog and rich carpeting over it; when tbe visible alteration and the loose mattrasses and cushions placed on agony in the countenance of the ambasthe ground, made up in the form of sador, led his friends soon to the supsophas, covered with velvet, and em- position of the cruel orders he had isbroidered with gold and silver, served sued, and he was easily persuaded to for seats, with Turkey carpets laid be countermand them. He sent horsemen fore them. The coffee was served in with every inducement given them to very small cups of china, placed in gold overtake the sanguinary Mameluke, and filagree cups without saucers, on a solid arrest his hand from the murder he was gold salver, of an uncommon size, rich- so eager to perpetrate. They reached ly embossed : this massive waiter was the garden a few seconds after him; but brought in by two slaves, who bore it he knowing of a breach in the garden between them round to each of the wall, bad, assassin-like, entered that company ; and these two eunuchs were way to prevent alarm, and found the the most richly habited slaves we had fair Circassian walking solitarily in the yet seen in the castle: they were entirely garden at that late hour. At the sight covered with gold and silver. Refresh- of him she fled, having long considered ments were afterwards served upon low him as her destined murderer. She, in

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