Page:1902 Encyclopædia Britannica - Volume 26 - AUS-CHI.pdf/239

This page needs to be proofread.


B E L L U N O ■ -BENDIGO Bel IU no, a town and episcopal see and capital of the province of Belluno, Yenetia, Italy, on the river Piave, 72 miles by rail N. from Venice. It has a museum with numismatical, mineralogical, and other collections, and a technical school (1879). There are also mineral springs and a hydropathic (1483 ft.). Population (1881) 15,660, (1901) 18,649; of province (1891) 174,140, (1901) 191,400. Beloit, a city of Rock county, Wisconsin, U.S.A., situated in 42° 30' K lat., and 89° IP W. long., in the southern part of the state, on Rock river, at an altitude of 744 feet. It has two railways, the Chicago and North-Western, and the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St Paul. Beloit College, a Presbyterian institution, was founded in 1846. It has a faculty of 20 professors and about 400 students. Beloit was settled in 1835, and received a city charter in 1856. Population (1880), 4790; (1890), 6315; (1900), 10,436. Bel per, a market town and railway station, in the Mid parliamentary division of Derbyshire, England, on the Derwent, 7 miles N. of Derby. The church of St Peter has been restored, and an Anglican convent, a mission church, and a public hall erected. The nail trade has declined, but there are now large cotton mills, hosiery works, foundries, and engineering works. Area of township (an urban district), 3183 acres; population (1881), 9875; (1901), 10,934. Belvidere, a city of Illinois, U.S.A., capital of Boone county, on the Kishwaukee river and at the intersection of two lines of the Chicago and North-Western railway, in the northern part of the state. Population (1890), 3867; (1900), 6937. Benares, or Varanasi, a famous city of British India, in the North-West Provinces, which gives its name to an administrative district and a division. The city is situated in 25° 18' N. lat., and 83° 3' E. long., 421 miles N.W. from Calcutta, on the left bank of the Ganges. The area (exclusive of cantonments) is 3448 acres. The population in 1881 was 214,758 ; in 1891 it was 219,467 ; and in 1901 it was 203,095. The municipality consists of 25 members, of whom 18 are elected, with the district magistrate as ex officio chairman. The municipal income in 1897-98 was Rs.4,93,238, of which just half was derived from octroi; the incidence of taxation was R.l:12:l per head. A considerable debt has been incurred for waterworks and drainage. In 1897-98 the total quantity of water pumped into the mains was 695,000,000 gallons; and the average daily consumption was 9 gallons per head. The death-rate in 1897 was 58‘63 per 1000, comparing with a mean of 46*64 for the previous five years. In the early months of 1901 the city was visited by an outbreak of plague. The modern temples number 1454. The most conspicuous buildings are the mosque of Aurangzeb and the observatory of Raja Jai Singh. The European quarter of Benares lies to the west of the native town, on both sides of the river Barna. Here is the cantonment of Sikraul, no longer of much military importance; and the suburb of Sigra, the seat of the chief missionary institutions. Among recent buildings are the town hall, of red stone, erected at the sole cost of the Maharaja of Vizianagram, to commemorate the visit of Prince Alfred in 1870; the Carmichael Library, built mainly by the same nobleman in 1874; and the Prince of Wales Hospital, erected by public subscription to commemorate the visit of the prince in 1876. Benares conducts a flourishing trade by rail and river with the surrounding country. It is the junction between the Oudh and Rohilkhand and East Indian railways, the

207

Ganges being crossed by a steel girder bridge of seven spans each 350 feet long. The chief manufactures are silk brocades, gold and silver thread, gold filigree work, jewellery, embossed brass vessels, and lacquered toys. The Queen’s College was attended in 1896-97 by 157 students. In addition, the Sanskrit College, founded by Warren Hastings, had 370 students. This institution is active in the publication of Sanskrit texts. There are also many efficient schools, some of which are supported by missionary and native bodies. The number of printing presses is about 50, publishing 5 newspapers. There are about 15 literary societies, of which the Carmichael Library receives a grant of Rs.300 from the municipality. The district of Benares, which extends over both sides of the Ganges, has an area of 1099 square miles. The population in 1891 was 921,943, being 912 persons per square mile. Classified according to religion, Hindus numbered 831,782; Mahommedans, 88,401 ; Christians, 1364, of whom 727 were Europeans; “others,” 396. In 1901 the population was 882,972, showing a decrease of 4 per cent. The land revenue and rates were Rs.10,05,822, the incidence of assessment being R. 1:6:1 per acre; the number of police was 2450. The district is under permanent settlement. In 1896-97, out of a total cultivated area of 396,466 acres, 136,647 were irrigated from wells, &c. There are no Government canals. The principal crops are barley, rice, wheat, other food-grains, pulse, sugar-cane, and opium. The main line of the East Indian railway runs through the southern portion of the district, with two stations and a branch to Benares city; the Oudh and Rohilkhand railway through the northern portion, starting from the city, with three stations. The division of Benares has an area of 10,414 square miles. The total population in 1891 was 5,368,774, being an average of 515 persons per square mile. In 1901 the population was 5,032,699, showing a decrease of 6 per cent. The aggregate land revenue, which is permanently assessed, amounts to Rs.44,38,308, the average incidence being Rs.0:14:4 per head of population, and Rs.0:14:10 per acre of total area. Bencoolen (Dutch Benkoelen), a Dutch residency on the south-west coast of Sumatra extending from 2° 30' S. lat. to 5 8' S., and separated by the Barisan mountains from Palembang and Lampong. Its area is 9426 square miles. The bays of the coast are but slight indentations and the rivers small. The chief products are rice, pepper, tobacco, cotton, and gambier. There is considerable fishing. Since the abolition of forced labour (1878) and the substitution of taxation, the* residency has made progress. Bencoolen, the capital, is on the coast near the island of Pulu Tiku (or Rat Island). The population of the town is about 5000, of the residency 158,767, including 146 Europeans, 659 Chinese, and 43 Arabs and other Asiatic foreigners. BendigfO, the official name of Sandhurst, a city of Victoria, Australia, in the county of Bendigo, on the main line of railway between Melbourne and Echuca, 101 miles by rail N.N.W. from Melbourne. It is the centre of a large gold-mining district, which is also noted for its wines and agricultural produce. The deepest shaft in the colony is the Lazarus, which is 3424 feet in depth, and is still being sunk. There are several handsome public buildings, including the government offices, law courts, and town hall, and various industries, the manufacture of Epsom pottery being specially noteworthy. The output of gold in the district, in 1899, was 235,596 ozs. Bendigo was proclaimed a municipality in 1855, a borough in