ropes which stretch from the heads of a ship’s masts to the sides as supports (see Rigging).
SHROVE TUESDAY, the day before Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent, so called as the day on which “shrift” or confession was made in preparation for the great fast. Skeat (Etym. Dict.) derives the word “shrive,” of which “shrove” is the past tense, ultimately from the Lat. scribere, to write, to draw up a law, and hence to prescribe (cf. Ger. schreiben), through the Anglo-Saxon scrifan, to shrive, impose a penance, to judge. Shrove Tuesday is called the French Mardi gras, “Fat Tuesday,” in allusion to the fat ox which is ceremoniously paraded through the streets. The Germans know it as Fastendienstag. It is celebrated in Catholic countries, as the last day of the carnival, with feasting and merrymaking, of which, in England, the eating of pancakes alone survives as a social custom, the day having been called at one time “Pancake Tuesday.” The association of pancakes with the day was probably due to the necessity for using up all the eggs, grease, lard and dripping in stock preparatory to Lent, during which all these were forbidden.
SHRUB. (1) A bushy plant whose stem is woody and branches out thickly from the ground, not attaining sufficient height to be called a tree; this smallness of vertical growth is natural or is effected by cutting and lopping at an early stage or at stated seasons. The term is loose in application and the line between shrubs, trees and certain woody herbaceous plants is not easy to draw. The holly, the yew, the laurel, if allowed to grow from a single stem, become trees, other plants such as rhododendron, syringa, the eponymous are properly shrubs. The word is the same as “scrub,” low, stunted undergrowth, in O. Eng. scrob; the root, which is also seen in “shrimp” and “shrivel,” means to contract. Many English place-names contain the word, the most familiar being Shrewsbury (Scrobbesbyrig) and Wormwood Scrubs. (2) The name of a drink or cordial, now rarely found except in country districts. It is made of currant juice boiled with water and sugar to which some spirit, usually rum, is added. Another form of the drink is made of rum, orange and lemon juice, peel, sugar and water. The word is an adaptation of the Arabic sharb or sharab, beverage, drink, shariba, he drank, and is thus directly related to “sherbet” and “syrup” (q.v.).
SHUFFLE-BOARD, or Shovel-Board (originally “shove board ”), a game in which wood or metal disks are “shoved” by the hand or with an implement so that they shall come to a stop on or within certain lines or compartments marked on the “board ”—a table or a floor. It was formerly very popular in England, especially with the aristocracy, under the names shove-groat, slide-groat and shovel-penny, being mentioned as early as the 15th century. It was a favourite pastime at the great country houses, some of the boards having been of exquisite workmanship. That at Chartley Hall in Staffordshire was over 30 ft. long and was made up of 260 pieces. Shuffleboard enjoys considerable vogue in the United States, the board being from 28 to 30 ft. long and from 18 to 20 in. wide, of pine, poplar or white wood, with a gutter 4% in. wide extending entirely round the board. The surface is slightly sanded and sometimes oiled. About 5 in. from each end of the board is drawn a line called the deuce line. Each side, whether composed of two or four persons, used four disks of polished brass or iron, generally about 2 in. in diameter and 1 in. thick. When two persons play they shove first from one end of the board and then from the other; but when four play one of each side remains permanently at each end. The disks, four of which are marked A and four B, are shoved alternately by each side. A disk resting between the deuce line and the end of the board is in and scores two. One protruding over the end sufficiently to be lifted by the Bnger is called a ship and counts three. A disk resting on the board but not crossing the line counts one. In scoring only the best of the eight disks counts, unless one side has two that are better than any of their opponents', in which case both count. The side first scoring 21 points wins.
A variety of shufflle-board is very popular as a deck game on board steamers and yachts. It is played by pushing wooden disks by means of crutch-shaped cues, or shovels, into which the disks fit, so that they come to a stop within the lines of a large rectangle drawn with chalk on the deck and divided into squares numbered from 1 to 10 with an extra square nearest the player, numbered −10. The game is usually 21 points.
SHUKRIA, a large tribe of African nomads living in the “Island of Meroë,” i.e. the country between the Atbara and the Blue Nile. The family name of the principal, branch of this tribe is Abu Sin, and Gedaref, an important town in the centre of the Shukria country, was formerly called Suk Abu Sin.
SHUMLA (Bulgarian Shumen, Turkish Shumna), a fortified town of Bulgaria, 50 m. W. of Varna, on the railway from Trnovo to Shumla Road (a name given to a station on the Varna-Rustchuk railway by the English builders of the line). Pop. (1906) 22,290, about one-third being Moslems. The town is built within a cluster of hills, northern outliers of the eastern Balkans, which curve round it on the west and north in the shape of a horse-shoe. A rugged ravine intersects the ground longitudinally within the horse-shoe ridge. From Shumla roads radiate northwards to the Danubian fortresses of Rustchuk and Silistria and to the Dobrudja, southwards to the passes of the Balkans, and eastwards to Varna and Baltchik. Shumla has, therefore, been one of the most important military positions in the Balkan Peninsula. A broad street and rivulet divide the upper quarter, Gorni-Mahlé, from the lower, Dolni-Mahlé. In the upper quarter is the magnificent mausoleum of Jezairli Hassan Pasha, who in the 18th century enlarged the fortifications of Shumla. The principal mosque, with a cupola of very interesting architecture, forms the centre of the Moslem quarter. The town has an important trade in grain and wine, besides manufactures of silk, red and yellow slippers, ready-made clothes, richly embroidered dresses for women, and copper and tin wares.
In 811 Shumla was burned by the emperor Nicephorus, and in 1087 it was besieged by Alexius I. In 1388 the sultan Murad I. forced it to surrender to the Turks. In the 18th century it was enlarged and fortified. Three times, in 1774, 1810 and 1828, it was unsuccessfully attacked by Russian armies. The Turks consequently gave it the name of Gazi (“Victorious”). In 1854 it was the headquarters of Omar Pasha and the point at which the Turkish army concentrated (see Crimean War). On the 22nd of June 1878 Shumla capitulated to the Russians.
SHUSHA, a town, formerly a fortress, of Russian Transcaucasia, in the government of Elisavetpol, in 39° 46′ N. and 46° 25′ E., 170 m. S.E. of Tiflis, on an isolated rocky eminence, 3865 ft. above sea-level and accessible only from one side. Pop. about 25,000, consisting of Armenians and Tatars. Shusha was formerly the capital of the khanate of Kara-bagh. The town is locally renowned for its carpets, and the district for its excellent breed of Kara-bagh horses. Leather and silk are also made.
The fortress, constructed in 1789, successfully withstood a siege by Aga Mahommed of Persia in 1795, but was constrained to surrender two years afterwards. In 1805 Ibrahim Khan of Kara-bagh invoked the protection of Russia, but the annexation was not completed until 1822.
SHUSHTER, a district and town of the province of Arabistan (former Khuzistan) in Persia, S. of Dizful, and N. of Ahvaz. The district contains the town of the same name and 22 villages, and, including about 3700 nomad families of the Kunduzlu, Saad, Anafijeh and Al i Kethir tribes, has a population of about 40,000 and pays a yearly revenue of £6000. The district produces grain, opium, cotton, wool, limes (their juice, made into green extract, is exported in little earthenware jars), and manufactures gilims (woollen carpets without pile).
The town of Shuster, with a population of 15,000, is situated at the point where the river Karun, after breaking through the Fedelek hills, bifurcates into the Gerger canal, flowing E;, and the Shutait river flowing W. of it, in 32° 3′ N. and 48° 53′ E., and built on slightly elevated ground which rises gradually from the south-west to the citadel, Kalah Salasil, standing in the
- Considered to represent the Sele of Ammianus Marcellinus (xxiii. c. 6, 26), a city in Susiana, and of Ptolemy (Tab. v.).