Page:A Book of Dartmoor.djvu/36

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CHAPTER II.


TORS

Dartmoor from a distance—Elevation—The tors—Old lake-beds—"Glitters"—The boldest tors—Luminous moss—The whortleberry—Composition of granite—Wolfram—The "forest" and its surrounding commons—Venville parishes—Encroachment of culture on the moor—The four quarters—A drift—Attempts to reclaim the moor—Flint finds—The inclosing of commons.

SEEN from a distance, as for instance from Winkleigh churchyard, or from Exbourne, Dartmoor presents a stately appearance, as a ridge of blue mountains rising boldly against the sky out of rolling, richly wooded underland.

But it is only from the north and north-west that it shows so well. From south and east it has less dignity of aspect, as the middle distance is made up of hills, as also because the heights of the encircling tors are not so considerable, nor is their outline so bold.

Indeed, the southern edge of Dartmoor is conspicuously tame. It has no abrupt and rugged heights, no chasms cleft and yawning in the range, such as those of the Okement and the Tavy and Taw. And to the east much high ground is found rising in stages to the fringe of the heather-clothed tors.

Dartmoor, consisting mainly of a great upheaved mass of granite, and of a margin of strata that have

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