Page:Men of the Time, eleventh edition.djvu/214

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197
BURTON.

the coast and in the interior. He thoroughly explored his own province, which is larger than France, the gold and diamond mines of Minas Geraes, canoed down the great river San Francisco, 1500 miles, visited the Argentine Republic, the Rivers La Plata and Paraguay, for the purpose of reporting to the Foreign Office the state of the Paraguayan War. He crossed the Pampas and the Andes to Chili and Peru, and visited all the Pacific Coast. Returning by the Straits of Magellan, Buenos Ayres, and Rio to London, he found himself appointed to Damascus. While holding that position he explored various parts of Syria. In 1871 the consulate of Damascus was reduced to a vice-consulate, and Captain Burton was recalled. In 1872 he set out for Iceland, and thoroughly studied and explored it, returning the same year to find himself posted at Trieste. In 1876 Captain Burton visited Midian, and wrote an account of his travels in that country. At the close of the year 1877 he started again for Midian, purposing to organise a new exploration and partial exploitation of the mines which he discovered there. The second expedition left Suez, Dec. 10, 1877, and returned there on April 10, 1878. During four months of hard travelling and voyaging they lost only one soldier, who died of fever. They brought home some twenty-five tons of geological specimens to illustrate the general geological formation of the land; six cases of Colorado and Negro ore; five cases of ethnological and anthropological collections—such as Midianite coins, inscriptions in Nabathean and Cufic, remains of worked stones, fragments of smelted metale, glass and pottery; upwards of 200 sketches in oil and water colours, photographs of the chief ruins, including catacombs, and of a classical temple, apparently of Greek art; and, finally, maps and plans of the whole country, including thirty-two ruined cities, some of whose names can be restored by consulting Strabo and Ptolemy, besides sketches of many ateliers where perambulating bands like the gipsies of ancient and modem times seem to have carried on simple mining operations. The caravan consisted of eight Europeans, three Egyptian officers of the staff and two of the line, twenty-five soldiers and thirty miners, ten mules, and about one hundred camels. In 1882 Captain Burton and Commander V. L. Catneron undertook a journey of exploration in the country lying at the back of the Gold Coast Colony. Captain Burton has written some thirty volumes, which describe his travels. Among them are: "The Lake Regions of Central Africa;" "Abeokuta; or, an Exploration of the Cameroon Mountains," 1863; "A Narrative of a Mission to the King of Dahomey," 1864; "Explorations of the Highlands of the Brazil, with a full account of the Gold and Diamond Mines;" also, "Canoeing down 1500 miles of the great river São Francisco, from Sabarà to the Sea," 2 vols., 1868; "Vikram and the Vampire, or tales of Hindu Devilry," 1869; "Zanzibar, City, Island, and Coast," 2 vols., 1872; and (in collaboration with Mr. Charles F. Tyrwhitt Drake) "Unexplored Syria: Visits to the Libanus, the Tulúl el Safá, the Anti-Libanus, the Northern Libanus, and the 'Aláh;" "Two Trips to Gorilla Land and Cataracts of the Congo," 2 vols., 1875; "Ultima Thule, or a Summer in Iceland," 2 vols., 1875; "Etruscan Bologna: a Study," 1876; "Sind Revisited; with Notices of the Anglo-Indian Army; Railroads, Past, Present, and Future, &c.," 2 vols., 1877; "The Gold Mines of Midian and the Ruined Midianite Cities. A Fortnight's Tour in North Western Arabia," 1878; a translation of "Camoens's Lusiads," 1880; "Camoens: his Life and his Lusiads; a Commentary;" 2 vols., 1881;