HISTORY ETHNOGRAPHY NATURE WINE-MAKING SITE MAP
Selected and rare materials, excerpts and observations from ancient, medieval and contemporary authors, travelers and researchers about Cyprus.
 
 
 
 
uses Google technology and indexes only and selectively internet - libraries having books with free public access
 
  Previous Next  

SIR SAMUEL WHITE BAKER
CYPRUS AS I SAW IT IN 1879
page 62

View PDF version of this page

must have prevailed during several centuries, even durine the Venetian rule. It is difficult to determine the age of an olive-tree, which is almost imperishable; it is one of those remarkable examples of vegetation that illustrates the eternal, and explains the first instincts of adoration which tree-worship exhibited in .the distant past. I spent some hours with the olivetrees of Dali; they were grand old specimens of the everlasting. One healthy trunk in full vigour measured twenty-nine feet in circumference ; another, twentyeight feet two inches. Very many were upwards of twenty feet by my measuring-tape ; and had I accepted the hollow or split trees, there were some that would have exceeded forty feet. There can be little doubt that these olives throve at the period when Idalium was the great city in Cyprus ; they may have exceeded two thousand years in age, but any surmise would be the wildest conjecture. It may not be generally known that the olive, which is of slow growth and a wood of exceeding hardness, remains always a dwarf tree ; a tall olive is unknown, and it somewhat resembles a pollard ilex. When by extreme age the tree has become hollow it possesses the peculiar power of reproduction, not by throwing up root-shoots, but by splitting the old hollowed trunk into separate divisions, which by degrees attain an individuality, and event ually thrive as new and independent trees, forming a group or " family-tree, " nourished by the same root which anchored the original ancestor. The gnarled, weird appearance of these ancient groves of such gigantic dimensions contrasted sadly with the treeless expanse beyond, and proved that Cyprus had for very many centuries been the victim of neglect. The olive is indigenous to the island, and

View PDF version of this page


  Previous First Next  
 
 
 
 
 
Our banners   Bibliography   Global Folio
All materials from this site are permitted for non commersial use unless otherwise indicated.
If you reduplicate documents from here you have to indicate Cyprus Explorer as a source and place link to us.
Created at June 2008
              Яндекс.Метрика