Indian zoology [book]

Thomas Pennant, John Aikin, Hugh Davies, Johann Reinhold Forster, John Latham, John Latham, Peter Maxell
1790 unpublished
Jlreetj bookfeller, applied to me for permiffion to reprint this very imperfed performance. nan in China, from India. All the above rivers, the Bahramputter excepted, take their courfe dirough large vallies, enclofed on each fide by ridges of hills. On the approach of the fun to the tropic of Cancery the fnow on thefe mountains is difTolved, and all thefe vallies are overflowed, lilce Egypt by the Nile. When die rivers return into their channel, the moiftened countries are fown chiefly with
more » ... wn chiefly with rice, which yields a very rich increafe. The kingdoms of Cochinchina, and 'Tonquin, are bounded to the eaft by the fea, and to the wefl by a ridge of mountains feparating them from the kingdoms of Cambodia, and Laos. From this ridge many rivers defcend, which, after they have watered the country for a fl^ort trad, mingle with the fea. The foil of all India hitherto defcribed is rich; and, by the Soil. cultivation of the populous nations, which from the remoteft ages have inhabited thefe regions, and addidled themfelves to agriculture, is rendered extremely fertile. And, by reafon that fo many nations, and fuch various fpecies of animals, have for fuch a courfe of ages putrefied with the vegetables of this fruitful land, the foil, lixiviated with water and mixed with afhes, affords to Europe a great quantity of nitre, the principal ingredient of its gunpowder. Rice is chiefly fown in moift fituations, and fupplies thefe people, who live a Pythagorean life, with a food of eafy preparation, and extremely cheap. There is another kind of rice, which grov/s even on the hills, and fpares the cultivators the labor of watering. The marfhes are covered with thick beds of reeds; and, near Marshes. the mouths of the largefl rivers, overgrown with impenetrable groves of mangles. Among the cultivated trafts, here and there dry ANESSAYONINDIA, dry fpots are obfervcd, covered with briars and thickets. The parts negleded by human culture are full of woods, which abound with the moft beautiful and fingular birds, efpecially parrots, peacocks, pigeons, and others infinitely diverfified with the gayefl and moft varied plumage; together with herds of antelopes, tribes of monkeys, and numbers of lions and tygers. The elephant, and rhinoceros, alfo inhabit thefe forefts, which fcarcely ever lofe their leaves, but are always verdant, and perpetually loaded with fruits of one kind or another. Islands. Nature wears a different form in the iflands of the Indian fea. But, that we may the better underftand the nature of the climate, and the temperature of the atmolphere, it will be of particular ufe to confider the courfe of the winds which prevail in thefe feas. Wjnds. Between both tropics the wind almoft conftantly blows from the eaft ; and at the equinoxes, about the line, the courfe of the wind is direftly from eaft to weft. For the fun in the day-time heats the air; and about noon, when it is vertical, die atmofphere glows with heat, and therefore is rarefied ; at the fame time, the fun, feeming rapidly to move from eaft to weft, on account of the diurnal revolution of the earth, caufes noon fuccefiively ia different regions. , on the contrary, the eafl-fouth-eaft, and fouth-eaft fcarcely reach farther than the equinodlial line. And when the fun recedes to the tropic of Capricorn, the eaft wind follows it there too J but the eaft-north-eaft, and north-eaft fcarcely reach beyond the line, rarely to the tropic ; while the eaft-fouth-eaft, and foutheaft fpread far into the fouthern hemifphere. Thefe obfervations are generally true concerning the winds within the tropics, and efpecially in the great Atlantic and Pacific oceans. * Sir Joseph Banks did me the favor of communicating the drawing of the common Bird of Paradife, brought alive to England, drawn from the life. T. Po enabled,.
doi:10.5962/bhl.title.44872 fatcat:pr5lymcqjnejvms3oiilj5sh34