But a more terrible disaster occurred in October 1899, when a series of landslips carried away houses and broke up the hill railway.
Here the clay of which the hill is formed is gradually giving way, causing landslips and the collapse of buildings, notably of the abbey church of S.
(From Photographs by C. Evans.) In a very few years, however, the open pit mining was rendered impossible by the mud rushes, by the falls of the masses of barren rock known as " reef," which were left standing in the mine, and by landslips from the sides, so that in 1883, when the pit had reached a depth of about 400 ft., mining in the Kimberley crater had become almost impossible.
These interior landslips, besides choking the pipes and breaking the communication, often produce sinkings at the surface.
In the hills there were terrible landslips, which wrecked the little Cherrapunji railway and caused 600 deaths.
Torrential rains caused a series of landslips, carrying away houses and breaking up the hill railway.
They are liable to be suddenly swollen by rains, and floods and landslips often cause considerable damage.
The Lower Lias appears at intervals under the scarp of the basaltic plateaus, and contributes, as in Dorsetshire and Devonshire, to the formation of landslips along the coast.
The greater part of the Maremma now affords pasture to large herds of horses and half-wild cattle, but on the drier parts corn is grown, the people coming down from the hills to sow and to reap. The hill country just inland, especially near Volterra, has poor soil, largely clayey, and subject to landslips, but is rich in minerals.
The place where the acropolis was entered was believed to have been overlooked by the mythical Meles when he carried the lion round his fortress to make it invulnerable; it was really a path opened by one of the landslips, which have reduced the sandstone cliff of the acropolis to a mere shell, and threaten to carry it altogether into the plain below.