HISTORY ETHNOGRAPHY NATURE WINE-MAKING SITE MAP
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SIR SAMUEL WHITE BAKER
CYPRUS AS I SAW IT IN 1879
page 112

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daily walked over the adjoining country, and there was little difficulty in discovering the origin of M . Mattel's water sources. Upon the heights behind our camp, a plateau of many miles in extent, with an almost imperceptible inclination towards the south-east, received the rainfall, in addition to the subterranean drainage of the hills in the far distance. A great portion of this area was uncultivated, as the sedimentary limestone was generally close to the surface ; this was covered with the usual prickly shrubs that some writers have misnamed " heath, " together with the highly aromatic herbs that seem to delight in a thirsty soil ; among these is a thorny species of wild thyme, that is a favourite food for hares. In some places the soil was red, forming a strong contrast to the white surface around, and in such spots the earth had been already ploughed in preparation for the forthcoming season. The large area at a higher altitude formed an example of a principle that may be accepted as the rule throughout the island. In walking over this extensive surface, there was occasionally a hollow, drum-like sound beneath the feet, denoting subterranean cavities in the porous and soluble strata beneath the harder upper stratum. It was a natural consequence that a substratum impervious to water should form a bed at a certain level to retain the drainage : by tapping this bed at any point, the water would be discovered ; but by piercing the surface below this level, the hydraulic pressure would force the water into a running stream. This M. Mattei has accomplished, not as a new invention, but as the application of a rule well known to the Cypriotes from ancient times ; and I repeat my argument, that, " the hereditary ability of these people

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