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Nature volume 20, page 481 | Download Citation



I HAVE observed, in several recent numbers of NATURE, various notices of earthquakes, so frequent as to suggest the idea to me (perhaps incorrect) that for several months past they have been more numerous than usual. Since my arrival in West Java I have experienced several severe shocks. On March 28, between 7 and 8 P.M., I was startled by a peculiar shivering as I sat in my chair. At first I imagined I was seized with a terrible feverless ague, but I was soon undeceived by the increased bumping and the clashing of my bottles, &c., and the vehement beseeching of Tuhan Allah, and the loud exclamations of the natives of, “We are here!” “We are all here!” I learned in a few days that several villages lying at the base of the peccant volcano, Gedè, had suffered; in particular the town of Ijandjoer, in which numerous houses were destroyed, many bridges broken down, the telegraph apparatus entirely thrown out of gear, and six or seven persons killed. The ground also opened and emitted volumes of smoke, while the Gedè itself burst out with extra vigour, throwing out, in addition to the usual white steamy vapour, large quantities of smoke and ashes, fortunately to no great distance. Throughout the 28th and 29th there was a succession of shocks. On June 3 I experienced a second earthquake, undulatory but not very severe; and again on the 5th, undulatory, of considerable duration, and severe enough to thoroughly shake the whole house and throw down unfixed objects. These have done no damage to life, as far as I have heard, and, beyond some houses being cracked in Batavia, little to property. Since the beginning of March there have been numerous shocks, but none so violent as those of March 28 and June 5. Immediately preceding the shock of June 5 there was a sudden and heavy fall of rain, the drops being very large. The direction of the wave was from east to west.

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  1. Kosala, Bantam, July



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