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Deutsche Südpolar-Expedition, 1901–1903

Nature volume 82, page 336 (20 January 1910) | Download Citation



THE German South Polar Expedition called for a few hours at the islands at St. Paul and New Amsterdam, and though in so short a visit but little fresh information was obtained, one of the valuable by-products of the expedition is a useful summary and discussion of all that is known about these islands. New Amsterdam was discovered in 1522 by Sebastian del Cano, who commanded Magellan's expedition after his death at Manila. Both islands are French possessions. They are both solely volcanic, and rise from a common base. New Amsterdam is composed only of basalt, while St. Paul consists of basalt with some rhyolite tuffs and obsidian. The memoir on the geography of the islands is by Dr. von Drygalski, on the geology by Philippi, and on the petrology and the relations of the lavas to those of Kerguelen, Possession, and Heard Islands by Reinisch. E. Vanhoffen contributes a catalogue of the flora and of the fauna, which consists only of insects, myriapods, spiders, tardigrades, Crustacea, rotifers, c. The memoir has three excellent plates illustrating the scenery and volcanic features.

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