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henceforth styling himself king of the Danes and Wends. This victory led two years later to the voluntary submission of the two Abodrite princes Niklot and Borwin to the Danish crown, whereupon the bulk of the Abodrite dominions, which extended from the Trave to the Warnow, including modern Mecklenburg, were divided between them. The concluding years of Canute’s reign were peaceful, as became a prince who, though by no means a coward, was not of an overwhelmingly martial temperament. In 1197, however, German jealousy of Denmark’s ambitions, especially when Canute led a fleet against the pirates of Esthonia, induced Otto, margrave of Brandenburg, to invade Pomerania, while in the following year Otto, in conjunction with Duke Adolf of Holstein, wasted the dominions of the Danophil Abodrites. The war continued intermittently till 1201, when Duke Valdemar, Canute’s younger brother, conquered the whole of Holstein, and Duke Adolf was subsequently captured at Hamburg and sent in chains to Denmark. North Albingia, as the district between the Eider and the Elbe was then called, now became Danish territory. Canute died on the 12th of November 1202. Undoubtedly he owed the triumphs of his reign very largely to the statesmanship of Absalon and the valour of Valdemar. But he was certainly a prudent and circumspect ruler of blameless life, possessing, as Arnold of Lübeck (c. 1160–1212) expresses it, “the sober wisdom of old age even in his tender youth.”

See Danmarks Riges Historic. Oldtiden og den aeldre Middelalder (Copenhagen, 1897–1905), pp. 721-735.

 (R. N. B.) 

CANVAS, a stout cloth which probably derives its name from cannabis, the Latin word for hemp. This would appear to indicate that canvas was originally made from yarns of the hemp fibre, and there is some ground for the assumption. This fibre and that of flax have certainly been used for ages for the production of cloth for furnishing sails, and for certain classes of cloth used for this purpose the terms “sailcloth” and “canvas” are synonymous. Warden, in his Linen Trade, states that the manufacture of sailcloth was established in England in 1590, as appears by the preamble of James I., cap. 23:—“Whereas the cloths called Mildernix and Powel Davies, whereof sails and other furniture for the navy and shipping are made, were heretofore altogether brought out of France and other parts beyond sea, and the skill and art of making and weaving of the said sailcloths never known or used in England until about the thirty-second year of the late Queen Elizabeth, about what time and not before the perfect art or skill of making or weaving of the said cloths was attained to, and since practised and continued in this realm, to the great benefit and commodity thereof.” But this, or a similar cloth of the same name had been used for centuries before this time by the Egyptians and Phoenicians. Since the introduction of the power loom the cloth has undergone several modifications, and it is now made both from flax, hemp, tow, jute and cotton, or a mixture of these, but the quality of sailcloth for the British government is kept up to the original standard. All flax canvas is essentially of double warp, for it is invariably intended to withstand some pressure or rough usage.

In structure it is similar to jute tarpaulin; indeed, if it were not for the difference in the fibre, it would be difficult to say where one type stopped and the other began. “Bagging,” “tarpaulin” and “canvas” form an ascending series of cloths so far as fineness is concerned, although the finest tarpaulins are finer than some of the lower canvases. The cloth may be natural colour, bleached or dyed, a very common colour being tan. It has an enormous number of different uses other than naval.

Amongst other articles made from it are:—receptacles for photographic and other apparatus; bags for fishing, shooting, golf and other sporting implements; shoes for cricket and other games, and for yachting; travelling cases and hold-alls, letter-bags, school-bags and nose-bags for horses. Large quantities of the various makes of flax and cotton canvases are tarred, and then used for covering goods on railways, wharves, docks, etc.

Sail canvas is, naturally, of a strong build, and is quite different from the canvas cloth used for embroidery purposes, often called “art canvas.” The latter is similar in structure to cheese cloths and strainers, the chief difference being that the yarns for art canvas are, in general, of a superior nature. All kinds of vegetable fibres are used in their production, chief among which are cotton, flax and jute.

EB1911 Canvas.jpg

The yarns are almost invariably two or more ply, an arrangement which tends to obtain a uniform thickness—a very desirable element in these open-built fabrics. The plain weave A in the figure is extensively used for these fabrics, but in many cases special weaves are used which leave the open spaces well defined. Thus weave B is often employed, while the “imitation gauze” weaves, C and D, are also largely utilized in the production of these embroidery cloths. Weave B is known as the hopsack, and probably owes its name to being originally used for the making of bags for hops. The cloth for this purpose is now called “hop pocketing,” and is of a structure between bagging and tarpaulin. Another class of canvas, single warp termed “artists’ canvas,” is used, as its name implies, for paintings in oils. It is also much lighter than sail canvas, but must, of necessity, be made of level yarns. The best qualities are made of cream or bleached flax line, although it is not unusual to find an admixture of tow, and even of cotton in the commoner kinds. When the cloth comes from the loom, it undergoes a special treatment to prepare the surface for the paint.

CANVASS (an older spelling of “canvas”), to sift by shaking in a sheet of canvas, hence to discuss thoroughly; as a political term it means to examine carefully the chances of the votes in a prospective election, and to solicit the support of the electors.

CANYNGES, Canynge, WILLIAM (c. 1399–1474), English merchant, was born at Bristol in 1399 or 1400, a member of a wealthy family of merchants and cloth-manufacturers in that city. He entered, and in due course greatly extended, the family business, becoming one of the richest Englishmen of his day. Canynges was five times mayor of, and twice member of parliament for, Bristol. He owned a fleet of ten ships, the largest hitherto known in England, and employed, it is said, 800 seamen. By special license from the king of Denmark he enjoyed for some time a monopoly of the fish trade between Iceland, Finland and England, and he also competed successfully with the Flemish merchants in the Baltic, obtaining a large share of their business. In 1456 he entertained Margaret of Anjou at Bristol, and in 1461 Edward IV. Canynges undertook at his own expense the great work of rebuilding the famous Bristol church of St Mary, Redcliffe, and for a long time had a hundred workmen in his regular service for this purpose. In 1467 he himself took holy orders, and in 1469 was made dean of Westbury. He died in 1474. The statesman George Canning and the first viscount Stratford de Redcliffe were descendants of his family.

See Pryce, Memorials of the Canynges Family and their Times (Bristol, 1854).

CANYON (Anglicized form of Span. cañon, a tube, pipe or cannon; the Spanish form being also frequently written), a type of valley with huge precipitous sides, such as the Grand Canyons of the Colorado and the Yellowstone livers, and the gorge of the Niagara river below the falls, due to rapid stream erosion in a “young” land. A river saws its channel vertically downwards, and a swift stream erodes chiefly at the bottom. In rainy regions the valleys thus formed are widened out by slope-wash and the resultant valley-slopes are gentle, but in arid regions there is very little side-extension of the valleys and the river cuts its way downwards, leaving almost vertical cliffs above the stream. If the stream be swift as in the western plateau of North America, the cutting action will be rapid. The ideal conditions for developing a canyon are: great altitude and slope causing swift streams, arid conditions with absence of side-wash, and hard rock horizontally bedded which will hold the walls up.