« PreviousContinue »
Henry Benedict Medlicott, M.A., F.R.S., F.G.S., late Director of the Geological Survey of India, retired on the 27th of April last, after a continuous service of over thirty years in India. He became Superintendent (the title was altered in 1885 to Director) after the retirement of the late Dr. T. Oldham in 1876; and the Annual Administration Reports of this Department, published in the "Records of the Geological Survey of India," speak clearly as to the manner in which he has conducted a Department which was founded and left in complete working order by his predecessor. In collaboration with Mr. W. T. Blanford (then Senior Deputy Superintendent), he produced the first and second parts of the "Manual of the Geology of India," now unfortunately out of print. It is to be regretted that he did not bring out a second edition, or even a new form of the work altogether; but as he has already truly said in his last Annual Administration Report, "to re-write the whole while carrying on the manifold current duties of the Survey has been more than I could attempt in India with any justice to either."
Besides his part in the Manual, Mr. Medlicott wrote five of the Memoirs of the Geological Survey of India, which are works on special formations or districts: but his peculiar genius for conducting a Department like this, and for treating the many and varied questions which came before him as Director of the Survey, is more specially displayed in the Records of the Survey, to which he contributed 44 papers in all. The complete list of his non-official writings, as far as we can ascertain, is as follows :—
"On the Geology of Portraine, county of Dublin. " Jour. Dub. Geol. Soc. V. 265, 1850
"On the Sub-Himalayan rocks between the Ganges and the Jumna." J. A. S. B. XXX,
"Note relating to Sivalik Fauna.” J. A.¡S. B. XXXIV, pt. 2, 63.
"On the action of the Ganges." P. A. S. B., 1868, 232.
"On a celt from the ossiferous' Pliocene' deposits of the Narbada Valley." P. A. S. B., 1873, 138.
"Record of the Khairpur Meteorite of 23rd Sept. 1873. J. A. S. B., XLIII, pt. 2, 33. "Exhibition of a Meteorite from Raipur. P. A. S. B., 1876, 115. "Exhibition of Meteorites recently fallen in India, with remarks upon them." P. A. S. B.; 1876, 221.
"Remarks on Himalayan Glaciation." P. A. S. B., 1877, 3.
"Note on Mr. J. F. Campbell's remarks on Himalayan Glaciation." J. A. S. B. XLVI, pt. 2, 11.
"Exhibition of the new Geological Map of India." P. A. S. B., 1878, 124.
"Exhibition of some Geological specimens from Afghanistan." P. A. S. B., 1880, 3. "Exhibition of a specimen of rock-salt from the Chakmani Territory." P. A. S. B., 1880, 123.
"Note on Chloromelanite." P. A. S. B., 1883, 80.
"Note on the Reh efflorescence of North-Western India and on the waters of some of the rivers and canals."
'Lithological Nomenclature." Geol. Mag. IV, 83, 1867.
"The Alps and the Himalayas: a Geological comparison." Quar. J. Geol. Soc. XXIII, 322, 1867: XXIV, 34, 1868; Phil. Mag. XXXIV, 396, 1867.
"On faults in Strata." Geol. Mag. VI, 341, 1869: VII, 473, 1870.
The bald record of his services, as is the custom, is thus given in the official list of officers in the Survey Department of India:
Engaged by Dr. Oldham from the Geological Survey of Great Britain; joined appoint. ment in India on 24th March 1854; in August 1854 appointed by Court of Directors as Professor of Geology, Roorkee College; re-attached to Geological Survey for the field season; 1854-55, Narbada Valley; 1855-56, Sub-Himalayas; 1856-57, Bundlekhand; 1857 to 1862, Sub-Himalayas; in October 1862 left Roorkee and re-joined the Geological Survey as Deputy Superintendent for Bengal; 1862-63, South Rewah; 1863-64, Behar; 1864-65, Assam; officiated as Superintendent from 21st August to 13th November 1864; leave on private affairs from 10th May to 9th November 1865; 1865-66, Central India and Rajputana; 1866-67, Chota Nagpur, Chhattisgarh, Sumbalpur; placed in the 1st grade on the introduction of grading in May 1866; 1867-68, Garo Hills; 1868-69, Hazaribagh, Sirgujah, Sohagpur, Chanda, Mohpani; 1869-70, Satpuras; 1870-71, Bundelkhand, Narbada Valley; officiated as Superintendent from 20th July to 5th September 1870; sick leave, 13th June to 2nd December 1871; 1871 to 1873, Satpuras; officiated as Superintendent from 16th July 1873 to 15th December 1874; 1873-74, Garo Hills; 1874-75, Betul coal-field, Nimar, Nepal; 1875-76, Nimar, Jamu Hills; appointed Superintendent on 1st April 1876; 1876-77, Mohpani and Satpura coal-borings; 1877-78, Reh Committee, and Nahan; 1878-79, Office, Calcutta ; 1879-80, Office, Calcutta ; 1880-81, Nahan, and Office, Calcutta ; 1881-82-83-84, Office, Calcutta; special leave from 9th May to 8th November 1884; 1884-85, Office, Calcutta; designation changed to Director of the Geological Survey of India; 1885-86-87, Office, Calcutta; permitted to retire on 27th April 1887.
Previous to his retirement, and in acknowledging the receipt of his last Annual Report, his long and valuable services were thus acknowledged by the Government:
"As this is the last occasion on which the Annual Report will be submitted by you, the Government of India desires to take the opportunity of placing on record its appreciation of your long and valuable services, and to recognise the zealous manner in which you have discharged the duties of Superintendence and Direction and the devotedness with which you have supported the cause of Geological Science in India. I am to add that the marked advance which has been made in the investigation of the geological conditions of India during your tenure of office is most creditable to yourself, and that it is undoubtedly leading to the development of the mineral resources of the Empire, as well as the material extension of scientific knowledge."
Notice of J. B. Mushketoff's1 Geology of Russian Turkistan. Compiled from translation and notes from Professor F. Tovla of Vienna, by C. L. GRIESBACH, C.I.E., Geological Survey of India.
The first volume of this work is arranged in two parts: the first part (pages 1-311) being devoted to a review of the results of former explorations, while the second part, from the 9th Chapter, is descriptive of the geological and orographical features of Turán and of the Aral drainage-system.
9th Chapter: From Orenburg to Samarkand. The crystalline rocks of the high steppe between Orsk and Irgis, and in the neighbourhoods of Tashkent, Khojent, and Samarkand, are discussed.
10th Chapter: Treats of the city of Samarkand; the loëss deposits and the nephrite. 11th and 12th Chapters: The western spurs of the Tian-Shán; the paleozoic island Urda-Bashi, the paleozoic chain of the Kara Tásh, the cretaceous and tertiary deposits on the Sassik and Ak-Tash, the Kaspikúrt range (crystalline rocks and carboniferous limestone), and the valley of the Keless (cretaceous, tertiary, and post-tertiary) are described.
13th Chapter: This is devoted to the valley of the Fergana river (Narin-SirDariya): Jurassic-beds with coal-seams (Uch Kúrgán) are described overlaid by oil-bearing cretaceous strata (Rishtán) and gypsum and rock-salt bearing tertiary deposits. Two directions of disturbance and flexuring prevail: one from northeast to south-west (the Alai system), and a second from north-west to southeast (the Fergana system). Post-tertiary formations (conglomerates, loëss, bedded sand and drift sand) overlie the tertiary and cretaceous deposits. Permo-carboniferous (Nebraska horizon) underlie the cretaceous formation in Issfara.
14th Chapter: The western spurs of the Pamir-Alai.
15th and 16th Chapters: The Amú Dariyá valley between Chaharjui and Termez, and between Chaharjui and Petro-Alexandrovosk.
17th and 18th Chapters: The deserts of Kizilkum between the Amú and SirDariyá are described.
19th Chapter: A summary of the observations contained in the preceding chapters.
Turan presents the appearance of perfect uniformity of geological deposits in spite of the great variety of rocks which have been proved to exist; and this is mainly owing to the fact that the older formations quite disappear amidst the largely developed
Uniformity of geolo⚫ gical structure.
cretaceous, tertiary, and recent deposits.
'NOTE.—"Turkistan, Geological and Orographical descriptions, from observations made during journeys in the years 1874 to 1880." With a Geological Map of Turkistan, St. Petersburg, 1886 (in Russian).
? The present notice comes in as a fitting supplement to the several papers on Turkistan which have appeared from time to time in these Records as the preliminary result of Mr. Griesbach's late Journeying with the Afghan Boundary Commission. The paper is also of interest as referring to country which along its southern boundary just touched on the northern edge of Mr. Griesbach's work along the Khilif course of the Oxus.-(See map ante. p. 93 This of first volume of the Records.)
Most of the patches of metamorphic and older formations occur in the Kizilkúm in Central Turán, which forms the watershed between the Sír-Dariyá and the Amú Dariyá or Oxus.
Structure of the eastern margin of Turán.
Beyond the metamorphic and crystalline rocks of the Múgodshár desert, the dioritic island of the Chegana river, and the palæozic limestones of the Karatan; Mushketoff again met these rocks along the eastern margin of Turán, forming small and quite isolated promontories in the Urda-Bashi mountains, which are built up of devonian limestones and granites, while they are flanked by tertiary red conglomerates. In the Karatash range and in Badam carboniferous limestone occurs with the devonians; and the granite of the Urda-Bashi is represented by orthoclase and felsite-porphyry with tufa. Kasikúrt is stratigraphically the most interesting island; for besides largely developed carboniferous limestone with numerous fossils, there occur igneous rocks. The isolated hill Monzar is formed of carboniferous limestone. In the Mogoltan range near Hodjénd, coarsely crystalline syenite is largely developed; also porphyritic syenite, diabase, and porphyrite. In Ferghána, Mushketoff found the Karatásh or Kashkaratá hills formed of metamorphic schists and dense diabase.
Further southwards, metamorphic rocks are found near Uratyuba and Jissuk. The Karnak range near Samarkand is formed of slate and diorite; and palæozoic limestones appear in Busgala.
Comparison with the Tian-Shán.
When comparing these rocks with those of the Tian-Shán, a great difference between them becomes at once apparent. The former are much more metamorphosed than the latter, For instance, the minor range of Sultanis-Dagh shows a remarkable diversity of slates, often highly metamorphosed and with many mineral veins; whereas in the Tian-Shán such rocks can only be observed at great intervals and at very few localities. In the SultanisDagh occur rocks, which are entirely wanting in the Tian-Shán, as for instance typical talcose and pistacite slate and eklogite. In the former range, the granites, diorites, and porphyrites show unmistakable traces of metamorphism; whereas in the Tian-Shán this is never the case. The granites too are more closely allied to the Ural granites than to that of the Tian-Shán. Veins of coarsely crystalline granite, containing fine crystals of almandine, beryl, and red schorl, are common in the former area, but quite unknown in the Tian-Shán; on the other hand, the Ural, as for instance, near Múrsinka in the Hinen range, has been long celebrated for its precious stones.
Western margin of Turán.
Similar metamorphic and palæozoic rocks are met with along the western borders of Turán. According to the researches of Messrs. Felkner, von Koshkul, G. Sieners, E. Tietze, and others, crystalline rocks, chiefly granite with porphyrite veins, are developed in the Kure and Kuremin-Dagh hills near Krasnovodst., which may be looked upon as a continuation of the Balkhán range.
A few unimportant localities of useful minerals are found within the crystalline and metamorphic areas. Besides almandine and beryl, traces of gold and copper ores are found in the granites of the Sultanis-Dagh. In the syenites of Mogoltán, some
Useful minerals in Turán,