In the opening decades of the 19th century supplies began to be drawn from Banka; in 1820 this island contributed 1200 tons; the production was increased to 12,000 tons in 1900, when a diminution set in, 9960 tons being the output during 1905.
The world's supply in 1900 was 72,911 long tons; this increased in 1904 to 97,790 tons, but in 1905, principally owing to a shortage in the supplies from the Straits and Banka, the yield fell to 94,089 tons.
Of the several commercial varieties Banka tin is the purest; it is indeed almost chemically pure.
Diamonds are obtained in Borneo, garnets in Sumatra, Bachian and Timor, and topazes in Bachian, antimony in Borneo and the Philippines; lead in Sumatra, Borneo and the Philippines; copper and malachite in the Philippines, Timor, Borneo and Sumatra; and, most important of all, tin in Banka, Billiton and Singkep. Iron is pretty frequent in various forms. Gold is not uncommon in the older ranges of Sumatra, Banka, Celebes, Bachian, Timor and Borneo.
The islands are often described as of two groups, Java and Madura forming one, and the other consisting of Sumatra, Borneo, Riouw-Lingga Archipelago, Banka, Billiton, Celebes, Molucca Archipelago, the small Sunda Islands, and a part of New Guinea-the Outposts as they are collectively named.
ments; the Arabs are nearly all traders, as are some of the Chinese, but a large number of the latter are labourers in the Sumatra tobacco plantations and the tin mines of Banka, Billiton, &c. The bulk of the natives are agriculturists.
The produce of the Eastern Islands is also collected at its ports for re-exportation to India, China and Europe - namely, gold-dust, diamonds, camphor, benzoin and other drugs; edible bird-nests, trepang, rattans, beeswax, tortoiseshell, and dyeing woods from Borneo and Sumatra; tin from Banka; spices from the Moluccas; fine cloths from Celebes and Bali; and pepper from Sumatra.
In the distribution of the rainfall, as dependent on the direction of the winds, the following parts of Sumatra must be distinguished: (r) south-east Sumatra, on which, as on Banka and Billiton, the heaviest rainfall occurs during the north-west monsoon, the annual volume of rainfall increasing from 98.4 in.
The place was formerly very unhealthy, but this has been to a large extent remedied by the establishment of water-works, a good supply of water being derived from the river Banka.
Chief rivers are the Bhagirathi, Damodar, Ajai, Banka, Kunur and Khari, of which only the Bhagirathi is navigable by country cargo boats throughout the year.
Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Celebes, Banka and Billiton, with their adjacent islands - and the Little Sunda Islands, of which the more important are Bali, Lombok, Sumbawa, Flores, Sumba and Timor.
These mountain systems are homologous in structure with those, not of Celebes or of Halmahera, but of Malacca, Banka and Billiton.
Banka (Banca, Bangka), an island of the Dutch East Indies, off the east coast of Sumatra, from which it is separated by Banka Strait, which is about 9 m.
On the east, the broader, island-studded Gaspar Strait separates Banka from Billiton.
Banka is 138 m.
Geologically, Banka resembles the Malay Peninsula, its formations being mainly granite, Silurian and Devonian slate, frequently covered with sandstone, laterite (red ironstone clay) of small fertility, and alluvium.
Banka is principally noted for the production of this mineral, which was discovered here in 1710 and is a government monopoly.
From May to August, the period of the south-east monsoon, the climate of Banka is dry and hot; but the mean annual rainfall reaches 120 in.
The chief town is Muntok at the north end of Banka Strait.
Zondervan, Banka en Zijne bewoners (Amsterdam, 1895), with bibliography; T.
Its length is about iioo m., its extreme breadth 250 m., and its area, including the neighbouring islands, except Banka and Billiton, is 178,338 sq.
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