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place called Hondsbossche, the worst defended and most dangerous spot along the whole Dutch coast, where the sea is constantly gaining upon the land. As there are no dunes here, the ocean is only kept out by artificial means, by building breakwaters, and throwing up jetties at right angles with the beach, which require unremitting care and attention. It is probable that one of the ancient mouths of the Rhine entered the sea at this point, previous to the formation of the Zuider Zee. (§ 9.)
Among the villages seen on the way to Sand is Camperdown, off which was fought Admiral Duncan's action, in which he gained a complete victory over the Dutch in 1797.
The dunes (§ 12.) near Camperdown are composed of sand, so very fine, and so extremely pure and white, that it is exported in large quantities to England, to supply some of our glass manufacturers.
Het Zand.. Inn kept by Hout. The name of the place will give the best idea of its situation; it lies in a dreary waste, all sand, in many places so loose as to be moved about by the wind.
The road beyond traverses a complete desert, very wearisome to the eye, covered with scanty heaths intermixed with pools of water. The isthmus over which the road is carried is not more than 2 miles broad, and commands a view over the German Ocean on one side, and the Zuider Zee on the other. Here may be observed in summer large numbers of the sea-fowl (Anas tadorna), which builds its nest and lays its eggs in rabbit holes.
21. Het NIEUWE DIEP, or Willemsoord. Inn, Burg, close to the canal, near the place whence the Amsterdam barge sets off: clean and comfortable. Heerenlogement, comfortable and moderate. Fine view over the harbour. Provisions are dearer here than anywhere else in Holland. Though in the midst of the sea, fish are very scarce, but Bordeaux wine is cheap and good.
The Port of Nieuwe Diep, the Ports
mouth of Holland, about a mile from the Helder, has been entirely formed, by artificial means, within 80 years. It affords protection by means of piers and jetties stretching out from the shore, to all vessels entering the great canal, even to men-of-war, and merchantmen of large burden. There is a steam-engine for emptying the dry dock; and the entrance of the basin is closed by a kind of sluice-gate, called Fan Sluices, from their shape; by an ingenious contrivance, the force of the rising tide is directed against them in such a manner as to shut them, and effectually to exclude itself. The North Holland Canal terminates in the sea at Nieuwe Diep. A row of small houses more than a mile long by the side of a canal extends from it to
4. The Helder ( Inns: Prinsen's: Heerenlogement) is a strongly fortified town, with 10,000 inhab., opposite the island of the Texel. The view from the extremity of the fortifications, looking towards it and over the Mars Diep, or entrance into the Zuider Zee, is fine. Down to the end of the last century the Helder was little more than a fishing village. Napoleon converted it into a fortress of first rank capable of containing 10,000 men in its bombproof casemates, at an expense of many millions of francs. He called it his Northern Gibraltar, but left the fortifications in a very unfinished state. Its batteries defend the roads of the Mars Diep, and the entrance of the harbour and grand canal, On the highest point of the dunes is Fort Kykduin, out of the midst of which rises the lighthouse.
The extremity of the tongue of land which forms North Holland, being more exposed to the fury of tempests and the encroachments of the ocean than almost any other, is defended on all sides by a dyke of the very largest dimensions: within this rampart lies the town and fortress of the Helder. "The great dyke of the Helder, which is nearly 2 leagues in length, is 40 ft. broad at the summit, over which there is a very good road. It descends into the sea by a slope of 200 ft., inclining
about 40 degrees. The highest tides | although they were successful at Egare far from covering the top; the mont op Zee, and in several other lowest are equally far from showing important actions against the enemy, the base. At certain distances enor- having fruitlessly endeavoured to excite mous Groynes of timber piles and fas- the Dutch to rise, and throw off the cines, covered with stone, averaging in yoke of France. length 200 yards, project into the sea. This artificial and gigantic coast is thus composed of blocks of granite and limestone, brought from Norway or Belgium; and these masses, which look as if it were impossible to move them, are levelled and squared like a pavement. The number of rocks which are seen at one view are sufficient to confound the imagination; how much more when we think on the quantities buried beneath the waves to serve as the foundation of such mountains."-Journey in N. Holland.
The Helder is almost the only spot on the coast of Holland where there is deep water close in-shore. The rush, or race," of the tide from the ocean into the Zuider Zee, through the narrow strait between Helder (Hels-deur hell's door) and the island of the Texel, constantly scours out the passage and keeps it deep. The passage of the Texel, called De Witt's Diep, was first laid open to Dutch commerce by the Grand Pensionary De Witt, 1665; when, after using the most extraordinary efforts to equip a fleet against England, its sailing was prevented by the assertion of all the Dutch pilots and commanders, that the wind was unfavourable, and the passage out to sea impracticable. In the teeth of this opinion of practical seamen, he proceeded in his long boat to this channel, took the soundings with his own hand, found the depth double that which had been set down, and, on his own responsibility, weighed anchor in the largest ship of the squadron, and put to sea through the dreaded gut in spite of the wind, himself leading the
The British forces sent to Holland, under the command of Sir Ralph Abercrombie and the Duke of York, in 1799, landed here, and took possession of the Helder, but were compelled to re-embark a few weeks afterwards,
There is a wild dreariness and dull monotony in the aspect of this district which would render a residence in it hardly endurable. It is a sand-bank, which man appears to have usurped from the sea-gulls, who have not yet abandoned their ancient territory, but flock to it in swarms, breaking the solitude by their incessant screaming cries. It is only when contrasting the barrenness of nature, and the threats of the sea, with the perseverance and successful ingenuity of man, that an interest is thrown over the whole scene, such as no other spot in Europe can be said to possess.
The island of the Texel is inhabited by myriads of sea-birds, and by a primitive race of shepherds, whose flocks produce fleeces of remarkable length and fineness, which are highly prized. They are of a breed peculiar to the island: a sort of green-coloured cheese is made here of the ewes' milk. In 1845, 32,000 lbs. of ewe-milk cheese were sold here.
In returning by land from the Helder to Amsterdam, the old road must he retraced as far as het Zand; there a bye-road, in the very worst possible condition after rain, diverges to the east through Schâgen, a beautiful village, situated in a drained lake, called the Zype, the oldest drained land in North Holland. Flax of a very
fine quality is cultivated in the neighbourhood, and Schâgen is the market where it is sold.
The country hereabouts, and all the way to Amsterdam, is the very opposite to that which has been left behind. It is clothed with the richest verdure, and supports numerous herds of cows, and large flocks of sheep, whose wool is famous, and the mutton highly prized: it abounds in old trees, and is sprinkled over with houses, affording by their neatness a sure indication of the owner's prosperity. The district is intersected
in all directions by canals; and it is curious sometimes to observe the sails of the barges overtopping the roofs of the houses, and slowly moving along, to all appearance over the fields, as the canal itself is concealed from view.
The road continues upon elevated dykes, and, after coasting along the Hugowaard Polder, passes through the village of Rustemburgh, by the side of another polder, the Schermermeer. "In going along the Schermermeer, we arrive at the point where the 3 polders (§ 11.), the Hugowaard, the Schermermeer, and the famous Beemster, meet. In the centre of this kind of triangle is built the pretty town of Schermeer Horn, the steeples of which, shining amidst the trees, command the superb basins which surround it. The streets extend along the high land in the 3 directions which are open to them, so as to give it a most singular form. In order to reach it, we had travelled along the course of the dyke half way up. On the left, 10 or 15 ft. above our heads, was the great canal common to all these polders, and the sails (of boats?) appearing above the trees every instant hid the sun from us. On the right, at the same distance below us, we saw similar canals and windmills, the sails of which were hardly on a level with us, and in a hollow extending further than we could see, the herds concealed in the tufted grass of the polder. It was completely the world turned upside down. In some countries we are accustomed to see the sails of the windmills higher than the rudders of the ships, and the goats perched above the crags; but in North Holland we must be contented to see every thing different from what it is elsewhere.". - Journey in North Holland.
The Beemster is one of the largest, most fertile, and best drained lake beds or polders. It took 4 years to drain it: the undertaking was commenced in 1808. The finest mutton in all Holland is fed upon its pastures. It abounds in large trees, the trunks and lower branches of which are actually painted over with various colours; whether to
Inn, Valk, not good, and dear; 2000 inhab.; an old decayed town, containing the Royal Naval Academy, through which young sailors must pass before they can enter the Dutch navy as midshipmen.
About 10 m. E. of Medemblik, on the Zuider Zee, is Enkhuisen, another decayed town, which once sent out 400 vessels to the deep sea herringfishery every year: at present it does not employ 50; and its population is diminished one-half. Paul Potter was born here. A plan has been drawn out for draining the Zuider Zee, by throwing a dyke across from between Medemblik and Enkhuisen to Stavoren, leaving a wide canal for the passage of the tides and the exit of the rivers Yssel, Vecht, &c., and communicating with the Y at Amsterdam. The cost is estimated at 5 millions sterling. (See Ed. Rev. vol. lxxxvi. p. 442.) Hoorn. Inn: The Oude Doelen is the only tolerable one;-in it are some remarkable pictures of the old schuttery (militia), in the Spanish times, by Rottiers, a pupil of Van der Helst. In the Stadhuis is shown the sword of the Spanish Admiral De Bossu, who was taken, after a severe engagement, by the Dutch, commanded by Admiral Derks. This is the native place of the mariner William Schouten, who in 1616 first doubled the southernmost cape of America, which he named after his birthplace, Cape Hoorn, or Horn. Abel Jansz Tasman, who discovered Van Diemen's Land and New Zealand, was also born here. Hoorn, like many other towns of North Holland, is sadly fallen off in trade and prosperity. Its present trade consists chiefly in its exports of butter and cheese, pro
visions and fish. Its manufactures, shipbuilding, and even its herring-fishery, are of little value compared with their former magnitude. The great fleet of Ad. de Ruyter was built here. From the Helder to Hoorn is a journey of 6
From Hoorn to Purmerende in a carriage takes 3 hours, and thence to Buiksloot (p. 64.) 4 hours.
Purmerende (Inn, Heerenlogement, the only tolerable inn between the Helder and Amsterdam), situated at the S. angle of the Beemster, on the banks of the Great Canal, and between the 3 polders, the Beemster, the Purmer, and the Wormer. No one should pass through Purmerende or the Beemster without making trial of the produce of the dairies; the cream, butter, and cheese here are excellent. The quantity of cheese sold in 1845 in Purmerende was 1,300,000 Dutch pounds. Travellers returning by the canal to Amsterdam should leave the barge at Purmerende, and take coach to Broek, and so to Buiksloot. The road from Purmerende to Broek by Monnikendam is very curious.
Monnikendam. A village of 2000 inhab. From this place travellers may proceed to Broek, and view that curious village; then to Buiksloot, where they may cross by the ferry to Amsterdam, or, taking the road along the dykes, lengthen their journey to Zaandam; and, after seeing there the cabin of Peter the Great, embark in the steamer for Amsterdam, as described in Rte. 3.
A trip may be made from Monnikendam to the island of Marken, where the manners and the mode of living of the inhabitants are far more curious, because they preserve their primitive simplicity, than in the dull village of Broek.
The country forming the W. shore of the Zuyder Zee is so populous, that the line of villages, towns, and gardens is almost uninterrupted. The neatness, the order, and active industry displayed at every step is highly interesting. In short, the excursion in North Holland is capable of affording much gratifica
tion to a traveller.
AMSTERDAM, BY UTRECHT AND ARNHEM (RAILWAY), TO NYMEGEN.
Amsterdam to Utrecht 23 miles; to Arnhem 56 miles.
Arnhem to Nymegen. 2 Posts = 9 Eng. miles.
Railway. Amsterdam to Utrecht. Trains 3 or 4 times a-day, in 1 hour to Utrecht. Stations, Abcoude, Vreeland, Nieuwersluis, Breukelen, Maarsen. Terminus at Amsterdam outside the Weesper gate.
The immediate neighbourhood of Amsterdam may be said to consist of an aggregation of polders. (§ 11.) The most remarkable is that called the Diemer Meer, one of the deepest of those drained lakes in all Holland: its bottom lies 16 ft. below the level of the sea, which is sometimes augmented to 30, at very high tides.
The country through which the rail. road passes is not very interesting. Both sides of the old road and of the river Vecht, between Nieuwersluis and Utrecht, are lined with villas, summerhouses, and gardens (§ 13.), belonging principally to merchants of Amsterdam. It is almost an uninterrupted garden all the way, and the taste of the Dutch for horticulture is here seen to perfection. Several very pretty villages are passed; the most remarkable are Abcoude, Loenen, Breukelen, Maarsen, and Zuilen.
On approaching Utrecht there are various indications that the traveller is about to bid adieu to the flat land: the country presents partial undulations, and a slight current becomes perceptible in the canals. About 3 miles N. W. of Utrecht, on the Vecht, is the old castle of Zuylen, the residence of Francis Borselen, to whom Jacqueline was married.
UTRECHT. Inns H. des PaysBas, excellent, one of the best inns in Holland :-'TKasteel van Antwerpen (Castle of Antwerp), on the Oude Gracht, good:- Bellevue: many diligences start from this house. Utrecht,
called by the Romans Trajectum ad Rhenum (ford on the Rhine), and in monkish Latin, Ultra Trajectum, whence comes its modern name, is situated at the bifurcation of the branch of the Rhine, called the Old Rhine, and the Vecht. It contains about 50,000 inhab. (20,000 R. Catholics). There is a considerable descent from the houses to the surface of the river -a circumstance which distinguishes this from other Dutch towns already described; the cellars under the quays by the waterside are inhabited, and are large enough to serve as storehouses and manufactories. Before a great inundation, which occurred 839, the main stream of the Rhine, which was then turned into the Lek, flowed past Utrecht.
In the Stadhuis, built 1830, are a few very old pictures from suppressed convents, curious rather than beautiful; the best are by Schoreel. The Treaty of Utrecht (1713), which gave peace to Europe, by ending the war of the Spanish Succession, was signed at the residence of the Bishop of Oxford, the British Minister, in a house now pulled down, and replaced by a barrack called Willemskasern. Many of the preliminary conferences were held in a back room of the old Stadhuis, still remaining. The act of confederation (1579), which formed the foundation of the freedom of Holland, and which declared the Seven United Provinces independent of Spain, was signed in the Public Hall (auditorium) of the University. An inscription intended for it ran thus: Atrium sapientiæ, incunabula libertatis.
The tower of the Cathedral, 321 ft. high (b. 1382.), detached from the main building, has a very beautiful top story, and deserves to be ascended on account of the view from it, extending over almost all Holland, a part of Gueldres and North Brabant, and comprehending, it is said, 20 large towns; among them Hertogenbosch, Rotterdam, Oudewater, Montfort, Amsterdam, the Zuider Zee, Amersfort, Rheenen, Breda, Gertruidenburg, Gouda, and the Lek. Midway in the steeple
is the dwelling of the sexton, or koster. The nave of the church was thrown down by a storm in 1674, when the wind carried off the roof, and twisted the solid stone pillars like willow wands; and the public street now passes over its site. The lofty choir is a fragment of a noble Gothic edifice; but it has suffered much from fanatic iconoclasts, and from modern pewing and high wood-work, in the conventicle style, which hide its beautiful clustered Gothic pillars, of great height and lightness. They have, too, been sadly cut away to admit the upper seats, which are arranged like those of a lecture theatre. It contains a monument to Admiral van Gent, who fell in the fight of Solebay, 1672, by Ver Hulst, and also a very large and very fine organ.
The first Bp. of Utrecht was St. Willebrod, an Englishman, who left his own country, in the 7th cent., to convert the heathen Frisons, who then possessed the land. He baptized many thousands of them; and the Pope ordained him bishop over them; while Charles Martel presented to him the castle of Utrecht for his residence, and the surrounding district for his see.
The University, close to the Cathedral, founded in 1636, has about 450 students; and, as many of the Dutch aristocracy reside at Utrecht, the greater number of pupils are of the upper classes. There are collections of natural history, minerals, &c. belonging to it.
The Mint of Holland is situated
Adrian Floriszoon, afterwards Pope Adrian VI., the tutor of Charles V., was born at Utrecht, in a house still standing on the Oude Gracht: a house built by him still goes by the name of the Pope's house, and now serves as the residence of the Governor.
One of the latest improvements here has been the transformation of the ramparts into Boulevards, so as to render them an agreeable promenade.
The Mall, called Maliebaan, is an avenue of 8 rows of lime-trees, half a mile in length on the E. side of the city.