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occupied their homes or their beds until day-break, many did not return to them till next evening. By fortunate accident, the streets had been almost deserted on the night of the earthquake, and before the shock, at an unusually early hour; and it was equally lucky that the violenceof the concussion was in a great measare over before the people had time to crowd into them again; for so very thick was the shower of large stones which were precipitated from the chimney tops, as well as of slates and tiles, which were shaken in great numbers from the roofs of the houses, that, if the streets had not been empty, many deaths and dreadful accidents must have occurred. The thundering noise made by the stones in falling, and were the other completely across to the opposite side of the way. It is rather remarkable, that it was chiefly from the newer houses that the stones were thrown; many of the older ones having entirely escaped this dilapidation.
It was not, however, until the morning's light that the most decisive proof of the violence of the shock was displayed. No sooner had day dawned, than the beautiful spire which is attached to the county jail, was observed to have been rent through at the distance of several feet from the top; and the part which was above the fracture appeared twisted round several inches in a direction towards the north west.* This circum
Some persons have been incredulous with respect to the circumstance of the twisting of the spire. A similar fact, is however, recorded in the Philosophical Transactions. Mr. Russel, in giving an account of the earthquake of March 8, 1749, says" In my dining room there was an Indian cabinet, on which was placed some ornamental China, part of which was thrown down on the floor, and smashed. But what was most remarkable, I had two China figures placed on the cabinet, with their faces fronting the west, which were, by the several shocks, turned about, facing the north-west, which I took to be nearly one third of the circumference of a circle. In this situation I found them as soon as I arose in the morning; and I am assured nobody had been in the room before to displace them.
$ Since, I was told by some company that were at my house, that a porter was going down Chancery-lane, to call a gentleman to go to the Brentford election, and in his
istance appears to be very satisfactorily accounted for
by a gentleman at Inverness, who remarks, that "the b motion of the undulation being communicated to the
lower sooner than to the higher parts of the building,
those parts of the latter whose cohesion was not suffib ciently strong would naturally be left behind, and pro
jected in a north-west direction. It is not impossible, however, that electricity, which, if not sometimes the cause of the sensation of earthquake, at least appears very generally to accompany such convulsions, might : have had some share in producing this injury. Notwithstanding its vicinity to Inverness, and although it was agitated during the great earthquake at Lisbon, yet there is no account of Loch Ness having been af fected on the late occasion. But it is not unlikely that it may bare displayed some commotion, though from the lateness of the hour it would necessarily escape observation. Three gentlemen who at the time of the
carthquake happened to be approaching Inverness Su from the west, when at a considerable distance from
the town, distinctly heard the large bell toll twice. This circumstance was entirely unnoticed by those who were in the streets or houses of the place; people of every description having been too much alarmed, and too much occupied in providing for the safety of themselves and their families, to remark it. It appears : to have been admitted by many gentlemen of Inverness, who had resided long in foreign countries, particularly in the West Indies, where such convulsions are very
frequent, that they had never before felt so smart a "shock. ** From Tain, Dingwall, Dornoch, Wick, and all the towns to the northward of this, there were similar accounts to those given of Forres, and the other towns already mentioned. I had several very interesting and intelligent letters from Sutherland. One gentleman describes the sensation he and his party felt to have been just as if they had been all suddenly launched in a boat from dry land to sea. At first he supposed, for way, as he called it, was struck with a blast, turned round on his heel, and fell down, and has not been well since. Also, another person, that was set out on some business, was nearly turned round by the shockel-Ed. P. Mag.
e a moment, that one side of his chair, and the wall
against which he was leaning, had suddenly given way; su The hens made a prodigious nuise on their roost; and
a pointer dog bowled for a considerable time after- wards. On looking out immediately afterwards, this
gentleman remarked that the night was warm, and quite clear, but rather dark; the atmosphere heavy,
and forming one cloud, except on the eastern and south areast horizon, where it had the appearance generally observable before sun rise. Another gentleman, who
was on the road near Brora, in a gig, writes me that she was not in the least sensible of anything, and was eft quite ignorant of the shoek, until he heard of it on
reaching home, where he found his family had been
alarmed. A lad, who was standing on a rock in the my middle of the country, at the time of the convulsion, a declared that it moved up and down under him like a su quaking bog. Od aan At Aberdeen, Montrose, Dunkeld, Perth, Pitmain, i and the other places intervening between this and the river Tay, the earthquake seems to have been generally felt, with equal violence, making allowance for variety of situation. At Aberdeen, a person who had been present during the earthquake in Lisbon, on June 6, 1807, described the late shock as exactly' resembling the commencement of it. In many houses the bells were set a ringing, and the wires continued to vibrate for some time after their sound had ceased. The houses were shaken to their foundations, and the heaviest articles of furniture were moved. A second, but more slight and partial shock, was felt about half-an-hour after the first; and this was also remarked by some individuals in almost every quarter where the chief one had been experienced.
தோ At Parkhill, the seat of general Gordon, near Aberdeen, a circumstance occurred which deserves particular attention. The sluice-gate of a piece of water, weighing several tons, was raised from its foundation about twelve inches, and some large stones having accidentally rolled underneath it, kept it up in that si. tuation till most of the water escaped before it could be replaced. Several instruments have been from time to time proposed for measuring the degree of force of No, 42.
the shock of earthquakes ; but here was one perfectly fortuitous, which, i bough perhaps it did not mark the utmost extent of its energy, proved that the power of the late one had been at least equal to an elevation of twelve inches. In the neighbourhood of Montrose a very amusing occurrence happened. Two excisemen having laiu down, in concealment, on the ground, to watch for an expected party of smugglers, when the shock took place, one of then started up, exclaiming to his comrade, " Here they are! for 1 feel the ground striking under their horses' feet.'! : In the towwof Montrose the inhabitants felt their beds move, first in a horizontal direction, and then return to their former situation; after which a tremulous motion was felt, as when a body, after being agitated, settles upon its basis. Some compared it to the slight rolling of a ship at sea. The bells in houses were rung, and the furniture shaken, as in other places, and the greatest alarm prevailed. A vivid flash of lightning was observed to follow after the shock.
The article from Perth speaks of two distinct shocks, the second oceurring at an interval of a minute after the first. In other respects the effects there appear to have been similar to, and nearly as powerful as, those at Aberdeen and Montrose. At Dunkeld, a young man, who was stepping into bed at the moment of the sbock, was nearly thrown down on the floor; and in one house the liquor in the glasses was nearly spilt by the concussion. A small meteor was seen to pass from east to west just about the time of the earthquake.
A gentleman, who had been for some time on a visit to this neighbourhood, who has resided long in Italy, and who tells of himself that he has always had a kind of luck for meeting with earthquakes, asserts that, whilst sitting at breakfast, about three days before the late sbock occurred, he distinctly felt a slight concussion; which, from the recollection of what he had exu perienced abroad, gave him very coosiderable alarm, but which he did not wish to communicate to his friends at the time. This gentleman was also perfectly sensible of the second and slighter shock, which fol. lowed on August 13, at an interval of half an hour