Page:Transactions of the Geological Society, 1st series, vol. 2.djvu/43

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33
Dr. Berger on the Isle of Man.

ridge of land, formed by the gradual slope of Slieau-y-Carnane and the high land of Spanish head.

Two miles farther to the south, the narrow channel of the Calf, about two furlongs in breadth, forms the last transverse valley. The small Isle of Kitterland lies in the middle of the Strait, connected by shelving rocks discernable only at low water, both with the main of the Isle of Man, and with the Calf itself.

It is a remarkable fact that the trifling elevation of these three sections decreases southwards, down to the last which is below the level of the sea.

A fourth flat, more considerable indeed than any already spoken of, may be said to exist on the outskirt of the chain northwards, occupying that fenny plain anciently called “The Curragh,” and now transformed into one of the most fertile tracts of the whole island.[1]

The chain of mountains that forms the middle part of the Isle of Man, considered in itself, might perhaps with more propriety be denominated a group than a chain. It is a rising “en masse” of the land, a common broad basis or foundation on which rest several mountains otherwise unconnected with each other, though disposed in some regular order.

The narrow Glen of Mullin-y-Chlea, may serve to distinguish the mountainous group into two divisions, the one north, the other south. In the northern district of the group, two extensive lines of mountains and a central one, may be traced without difficulty. The

  1. Very large trees of oak and fir have been found buried in the peat of the Curragh, some two feet and half in diameter, and 40 feet long. The oaks and firs do not lie promiscuously, but where there is plenty of one sort, there are generally few or none of the other.—Wilson's History of the Isle of Man.

    Mr. J. C. Curwen seems to think that the area of the flat country comprehended between Ramsay and Kirk-MichaeI, Jurby-point and Aire-point, may be rated at 40,000 acres, that is to say, according to his above referred to calculations, to a little less than 1-6th part of the whole area of the island.

    Agricultural Report, p. 153.—Workington, 1810.

Vol. II.E