Water-Bug, the name for a number of aqueous insects inhabiting the streams and ponds of the United States. They belong to the order of true bugs, that is, they have the mouth-parts in the form of a sharp stylet or beak for sucking. The water boatman is one form, swimming on its back. The water-stick is a long, slim, water-bug. Water-bugs are interesting to study in aquaria and may be collected with an insect net, sweeping the bottom of a pond and the submerged plants. The water scorpion, also sometimes called the electric light bug, is the most formidable of all the water-bugs. It is about two inches long, with sharp, pointed forelegs with which it catches small fishes and frogs and sucks their blood. It flies from pond to pond at night, and is attracted by strong lights. See Electric-Light Bug.
Wa′terbury, Ct., in New Haven County, 33 miles southwest of Hartford. It is on the Naugatuck River and surrounded by hills. It has a fine public park, a free library and other public buildings. It is known as the center of the brass manufacturing business of the United States, which began in 1802 with the making of gilt buttons. Electric wire, student-lamps, hinges, match-safes, clocks, watches, pins, hooks and eyes and percussion-caps are made by the million. Waterbury was settled in 1667. Population 73,141.
Wa′terfall or Cat′aract, a break in the slope of the bed of a river so abrupt that the water falls from the higher to the lower level. They usually occur in mountainous regions, where the streams flow from the mountain sides into valleys. The channel of the river must be rocky to form a fall, as the quantity of water would otherwise soon wear out a side channel. Some of the finest waterfalls are Orco Falls at Monte Rosa, 2,400 feet; Staubbach Falls in Switzerland, 1,000 feet; Zambezi Falls in Africa, 360 feet; Niagara Falls, 163 feet; and among the most wonderful in the world for their great width and the enormous volume of water which pours over them are the Falls of the Yosemite in California, 2,526 feet, the highest in the world.
Water-Lily, a general name applied to all members of the family Nymphceaceæ. They are aquatic herbs, native to all temperate and tropical regions. The stems are submerged, and the broad leaf-blades (lily-pads), on long petioles, float on the surface of the water. The true water-lilies are a species of Nymphæa or Castalia, the flowers being showy and of various colors. In the common species the petals are numerous and beautifully white and fragrant. The yellow pond-lily or spatter-dock is a species of Nuphar.
Wa′terloo′, a village in Belgium, nine and a half miles southeast of Brussels, which owes its fame to the great battle fought in its neighborhood between Napoleon and Wellington, June 18, 1815. The French army numbered about 72,000 men, and Wellington's army numbered about 67,000, made up of British, German and Dutch troops. Napoleon supposed he had only Wellington's army to fight, as the Prussians had retreated before Ney on the 16th. But their retreat was toward Waterloo, and their arrival on the battlefield on the afternoon of the 18th turned the battle against the French, who, finding themselves hemmed in between the British and Prussians, fled in disorder. The roads southward were crowded with fugitives fleeing from the pursuing cavalry. One regiment of the guard which had covered Napoleon's retreat was surrounded and ordered to surrender; but their general, making the well-known answer: "The guard dies; it does not surrender," charged upon the enemy, and they perished almost to a man. The combined losses of this battle were about 50,000 men. Victor Hugo says the defeat of Napoleon was brought about by a rain the night before, which delayed the attack in the morning, thus giving the Prussian troops time to reach Waterloo; while others ascribe it to Grouchy's failure to obey orders. For a description of the battle see Hugo's Les Miserables. See Napoleon and Wellington.
Waterloo, Ia., capital of Black-Hawk County, on both banks of the Cedar River, which furnishes water-power for its industries, northeastern Iowa, 94 miles west of Dubuque and 105 miles northeast of Des Moines. It is on the Waterloo, Cedar Falls and Northern, the Illinois Central, the Chicago and Great-Western and the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific railroads. It is the center of a productive agricultural country and the shipping-point for large supplies of grain and produce. Besides the repair shops of the Illinois Central Railroad, the city's industries include flour-mills, foundries, carriage and machine shops, sash, door and blind factories, agricultural implements, gas engine and automobile works and refrigerators. It has admirable parochial and public schools, two high schools, a business college, Our Lady of Victory Academy (R. C.) and school libraries. Population 26,693.
Wa′termel′on, the fruit of Citrullus vulgaris, a species of the gourd family, and native to Asia and Africa. Over 60 varieties have been produced and catalogued.
Wa′terspout′, a phenomenon frequently observed in calm, warm weather at sea or on inland lakes, appearing under overhanging clouds, which, under certain influences, send downwards a funnel-shaped cloud, charged with vapor condensed from the atmosphere; and by its rotary indraught, on reaching the surface of lake or sea, it