Online Encyclopedia

MERGUI

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V18, Page 165 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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MERGUI, the southernmost district of Lower Burma, in the Tenasserim division, bounded on the W. by the Bay of Bengal and on the E. by Siam. Area 9789 sq. m. Two principal ranges cross the district from north to south, running almost Hybrids between, as is presumed, M. albellus and Clangula IIaucion, the common golden-eye, have been described and figured (Eimbeck, Isis, 1831, 300, tab. iii.; Brehm, Naturgesch. aller Vog. Deutschlands, p. 930; Naumann, Vog. Deutschlands, xii. 194, frontispiece; Kja'rbolling, Jour. fete Ornithologie, 1853, Extraheft, p. 29, Naumannia, 1853, p. 327, Ornithol. danica, tab. lv., suppl. tab. 29) under the names of Mergus anatarius, Clangula angustirostris, and Anas (Clangula) mergoides, as though they were a distinct species; but the remarks of De Selys-Longchamps (Bull. Ac. Sc.-Bruxelles, 1845, pt. ii. p. 354, and 1856, pt. ii. p. 21) leave little room for doubt as to their origin, which, when the cryptogamic habit and common range of their putative parents, the former unknown to the author last-named, is considered, will seem to be still more likely. this remained in his family till 1726, when, after a great fire that destroyed most of the books in stock, it came to an end. In 1625 Merian became a burgher of Frankfort, then the great centre of the book trade in Germany, and lived there till his death on the 22nd of June 1650. Among his many works two deserve to be specially mentioned. The first is the long series of works, each entitled Topographia, which contained descriptions of various countries, illustrated by copper plates, largely done by Merian himself, while the accompanying text was due to Martin Zeiller (1589-1661), an Austrian by birth. The first volume was published in 1642 and described Switzerland, with the Grisons and the Valais; it contains the first known view of the glaciers of Grindelwald. " Austria " appeared in 1649, but the volume relating to Upper Saxony and Bohemia (1650) was the last issued by Merian himself. " France " appeared in 1655–1656, while in 1688 the series (extending to 30 parts, in 18 vols.) came to an end with " Italy," the volume as to Rome having appeared in 168x. The other great enter-prise of Merian was the series entitled Theatrum Europaeum, which appeared in 21 parts between 1635 and 1738—it is a historical chronicle of events in Europe from 1617 onwards. In 1625–163o Merian published a series of illustrations to the Bible, and in 1649 a Dance of Death. But he is best remembered by his views of towns, which have very considerable historical value. His best pupil, Wenceslaus Hollar (1607-1677), of Prague, settled in London (1635–1643, 1652–1677), and worthily carried on the Merian tradition. (W. A. B. C.) See Life, by H. Eckardt (Basel, 1887).
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