Page:Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of London, Volume 1 (2nd edition).djvu/291

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Account of the Volcanic Island. a small hillock, of a dark colour, a few feet above the sea. This was soon hidden again, and was only visible through the smoke at the intervals between the more violent eruptions. ' The volcano was in a constant state of acfi?ity, and appeared to be discharging dust and stones with vast columns of steam. At 7, 30, the rushing noise of the eruptions was heard. At 9, being distant from it about two miles, and the water being much disco- loured with dark objects at the surface in various place. s, I hove to, and went in a boat to sound round and examine ?t. [ rowed towards it, keeping on the weather side and sounding, but got no bottom till within twenty yards of the western side, where I had 18 fathoms soft bottom; this was the only sounding obtained, ex- cept from the brig, one mile true north from the centre of the island, where the depth was 130 fathoms soft dark brown mud. The crater (for it was now evident that such was its form) seemed to be composed of fine cinderst and mud of a dark brown colour; within it was to be seen, in the intervals between the eruptions, a mixture of muddy water, steam, and cinders, dashing up and down, and occasionally running into the sea over the edge of the crater, which I found, on rowing round, to be broken down to the level of the sea on the W.S.W. side, for the space of ten or twelve yards. Here I obtained a better view of the interior, which appeared to be filled with muddy water violently agitated, from which showers of hot stones or cinders were constantly shooting up a few yards, and falling into it again, but the grea. t quantity of steam that constantly rose from it prevented my seeing the whole crater. ' A considerable stream of muddy water flowed outward through the opening, and, mingling with th?/t of the sea, caused the disco- 1oration that had been observed before. -I could not ?appreach near enough to observe its temperature, but that of the sea, within ten or twelve yards of it, was only one degree higher than the average, and to the leeward of the island, in the direction of the current (which ran to the eastward), no difference could be per- ceived, even where the water was most discoloured; however, as a "mirage" played above it near its source, it was probably hot there. The dark objects on the surface of the sea proved to be patches of small floating cinders. The island, or crater, ap- peared to be seventy or eighty yards in its external diameter,. and the lip as thin as it could be consistent with its height, which might be twenty feet above the sea in the highest, and six feet in the lowest part, leaving the rest for the diameter of the area within. These details could only be observed in the intervals between the great eruptions, some of which I witnessed from the boat. words cau describe their sublime grandeur; their progress was generally as follows :mAfter the volcano had emitted for some sg