Monthly Archives: May 2016

Shape of a Mountain

A photo of Schiehallion is an impressive thing, with great hunk with spine aloft, the mountain rises magnificently out of its surroundings. But before photography – and prior to contours – depicting a mountain and suggesting its elevation had quite … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Map Mark Making

The look of a mountain.Crucially – with neither faint (contour) lines nor numbered heights – we have illustration IX. It probably represents the stage before the invention, on it are marked the perimeter stations – where a theodolite would have … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Scaling the Mountain

Journey north: A1, A9; spent pondering scales for drawings: A3, A5? No need to curse the ‘badnef of the weather’ this time, heading for the camp site I see Schiehallion’s Western Edge for the first time; a cool pinnacle glistening … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Great lines, Faint lines

It’s not even a page in length; there is just one paragraph that makes clear Hutton is inventing a new type of line: “This method was the connecting together by a faint line all the points which were of the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Cooking with Columns (and tables)

Once Hutton had conceived his columns: “it is evident that the plan must be divided into a great number of parts, perhaps not less than a thousand for each observatory… forming about two thousand such pillars of matter…” With his … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Solid Thinking

I don’t think Hutton ever visited Schiehallion. I imagine now all his ‘travels’ occurring cerebrally; the young man strutting his stuff in his Newcastle school rooms, teaching and calculating, and the mature version based in Greenwich inventing methods of computing. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Goring Gap

Opening curtains to the morning sun mum exclaims “it’s so far down!” She has a remarkable capacity to see the world anew, including how sheer the drop is from bedroom window to garden below. On car journeys it’s often the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment