CANDIA, the ancient CRETE, a rich and extensive island in the Mediterranean Sea, lies between 231 and 261 degrees E. Long., and forms as it were a base to the Grecian Archipelago. Its length from its most western coast to Cape Samonium on the cast is about sixty leagues ; and it is nearly fifteen at its greatest breadth, front Cape Sassoso on the north to Cape Matala on the south. A chain of mountains, called the White Mountains, or the tnountains of •Sphachia, traverses the greatest part of the island. During half the year it is covered with snow, great quantities of which arc piled up by the ialtahitants in deep vales, exposed to the north, where it condenses and hardens, and is then used for cooling their liquors in smnnter. From these mountains flow numberless streams, which, during winter, are swell ed into torrents by the rains, and, in the spring, by the melting of the snow, and rushing with dreadlul impetu osity down the steep declivities, do not stop till they lose themselves in the ocean. Many of them, however, are completely dried up during the summer ; and the water with which the inhabitants then refresh their lands is drawn from the springs that issue from the bottom of the hills. The coast of Candia is indented with numerous harbours and roadsteads, which afford excellent and safe anchorages. The principal of these arc, Grabusa on the west ; the bay of Suda on the north ; and Paleo Castro on the cast. On the south, however, there are few places where a ship can ride with safety.
This island enjoys a most delightful climate, equally removed from excessive heat and violent cold. In sum mer, the rays of the sun are constantly tempered by re freshing winds from the sea; and during the short period of winter, which begins with December, and ends with January, snow never falls on the low grounds, nor is the temperature ever so low as to require artificial warmth. During this season the rains are frequent, but of short duration ; and though the sky is sometimes obscured with clouds, and the north wind blows violently, yet the sun appears almost immediately after the rain, and the at mosphere is often clear and serene. Rain never falls in summer, either in Candia, or in the islands of the Łgean Sea. Vegetation is supported by the copious dews which fall during the night, and which sufficiently refresh such plants as are indigenous to the climate ; but all others must be watered, in order to be successfully cultivated.
Though Candia is situated under the 35th degree of lati tude, yet, in the course of a year's observations, Mr Sa vary found, that from the month of March to the begin ning of November, the thermometer never varied more than from twenty to twenty-seven degrees above the freezing point. But what conduces chiefly to the salu brity of Candia, is the complete absence of those noxious vapours which rise from marshy grounds, and the abun dance of salutary plants. The waters never stand here in a state of stagnation ; and scarcely is a morass to be found in the island. "The mountains and hills," says Savary," arc overspread with various kinds of thyme, and with a multitude of odoriferous and balsamic plants. The rivulets which flow down the vallies are overhung with myrtles and laurel roses. Clumps of orange, citron, and almond trees are plentifully scattered over the fields. The gardens arc adorned with tufts of Arabian jasmine. In spring, they are bestrewed with beds of violets. Some extensive plains are arrayed in saffron. The cavities of the rocks, are fringed with sweet smelling dittany. In a word, from the hills, the vales, and the plains, on all hands, there arise clouds of exquisite perfumes, which embalm the air, and render it a luxury to breathe it." This climate has been famous from the remotest anti quity ; and Hippocrates, the father of physic, considered it the best restorer of health to his debilitated patients, whom lie sent hither to breathe an atmosphere impreg nated with such delightful emanations. Under this ge nial sky the Turks have acquired a taller stature, a more robust make, and a more majestic step, than their coun on the continent; and it has been matter of stir prise, that the natives, who enjoy the same blessings of nature, should have degenerated both in form and beauty. But the cause may be found in the yoke of that cruel slavery with which they are oppressed, and which has a tendency to degrade the body as well as the mind. They drag out their days in fear and anxiety, and are sometimes hurried by despair to put a violent end to their existence. Their countenances are disfigured with the marks of ser vility and meanness ; and the high-spirited Cretans, once the jealous guardians of liberty and the arts, are now con verted into cowardly, abject, and indolent Candians.