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While tbe groat Faoama Otnal is pro. a'owly rod painfully towards a hn t el for, bo*. etlH.dlntait and eren doubtful complot'on, ano'her wcrk of ft similvr kin 1 not so mooh hoard of, bat of considerable Interest and Importance la bsing prosiouted with more certain pros-p-ots ofBoo?ess. Wenfpr to tho Ship Oanal whloh U being on*, through the Corinthian Isthrau'. Everybody, or at ' leant "every schrolboy." known that the Gol'b of L9p%nto and iE^lna nearly out the kingdom o£ Greece Into two, their heads within three or four mllon of each other at the Istbmat of Oorlnth. The tffeot Is something th« same as If the Finns of Forth and Clyde had nearly met somewhere botwsen Grantoa and Dambarton. Though tht distance between the two Firths Is muoh grta'er we have long had them joined by a o »nal, but the conneotlon by a waterway of the two Greoiau golfs Is a feat only yet belDg accomplished. The great advantage whloh euoh a oonneotlon would be wu often thoaght of ia ancient timer, by the Greeks themselven end by tbe J&omtoi when they oarae Into power. The Greeks were a maritime people doiag a good deal m the aalliap way roand their own shores —as well as farther a-field— md It mast have been provoking to thorn when, voyaging, between points on the East and West coisffl that they had ti make anoh* tremendous detour round the far stretching aoutbero prnmootorlos of the Peloponnesus, while a straight path jvm ■o nearly open to them. They did, ' Indeed, often haul their boats »oros* the l<t mm, »B the Soo'B oaod to do across the neok of land batweon the Salt and West Looh Tarbert And had even a sort of traok constructed to faoilltata tbe paaaage. One of the Roman Emperora ("Nero tho wretch," if we mistake not) gave orders that a oanal should be oat, and the work was actu *lly began bat was soon aban* doned on aonount of lta difficulties. It seems, indeed, that the oattlo? of this oanal Is rather a tough job, and the difficulties of the task are not to be met* snred by the few miles In ext nt. The ronk which cpnneots tbe PeloponoeßUS with the mainland Is a vary hard kind of aoblat or granite. It fa not a matter of digging out sand a* In' tho oaso of the SmzOma), but borlog and bhattng solid rook. At tho highest central part the rook rises to 315 feet above sea level» and the intention Is to carry the eattlog downwards to 25 feet beneath set level* A. (ough and tedious work, no doabt, bat It Is apparently progrpgilne atuadlly, If slowly. It was began ir» 1882, and wm not expected to be finished before 18fl or 1892. The work ia being; carried on by a French company — the French seem' to be the canal builders of the age— with a capital of £1,200,000, and the president Is General Tarr, a Pole by birth, whose n»mo may be remembered Ia oonneotlon with Garibaldi and the ItalUa war of Independence and . nnlfioktlon* . Among the 2000 raea at work "on the canal there no very few natives, the Greek* preferring to have the work done forthW by Monteoegrlos, Italians and other' " barbarians/ bellevlog tbat thehr fortft llea In another dlreotlon than that of manual labor. It Is the Grdeka, how* ■.. ever, who will reap the msln benefit. Thtf.\ oanal will be of Immense ooramerottT advantage to them, end will ■tlmqlaW not only looal bat foreign .trade. AU. oross traffio betwoen Italy and the Bask will pass through it, and seeing that tba voyage between ItalUa' porta «od Oon* stantlnople and other muoh visited localities' !n the East will bo shortened by about eighteen hours the proapeot,. of lta early and saooeaoful oompletlon Is s> matter of Interest to tourists and travellers as well as ttaders.

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Bibliographic details

THE CORINTH CANAL, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2025, 31 December 1888

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THE CORINTH CANAL Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2025, 31 December 1888