- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
72

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - IV. Open sea, eastward to the Yenisei

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THROUGH SIBERIA
72
side, and often quite close to it. The exceptions to this
rule are places where the river makes a sudden bend.
Where it turns sharply to the right, the stream, owing
to the inertia, makes for the left bank, and has there dug
the deepest channel. But one does not have to go far on
to find the strongest current and deepest channel on the
right again, that is, the east side.
There can be no doubt that this is an effect of the
earth’s rotation, which causes all water flowing in a hori
zontal direction to have a tendency to go to the right in
the northern hemisphere, as mentioned before, and this
tendency becomes stronger the farther north we go.
This effect is particularly apparent in such broad rivers
as the Yenisei, where the waters within its bed may
flow at very different rates of rapidity. It must natur
ally lead to the river digging out its channel deeper on
the right side of its bed, and also to its wearing away
the right bank more than the left. In this way the
whole river-bed has a tendency to move gradually to
the right. Now it is clear that, when a great river
flows through a flat country like northern Siberia, the
effect of this must be that the river-bed is constantly
on the move towards the right, until it comes upon
obstacles which check this movement. The result must
then be that in the course of ages the river leaves on its
left side a flat country, where it formerly had its bed
and where it has left its deposits, and on its right it will
have higher land, into which it has not yet dug its way.
If we look at the Yenisei, we may thus expect that in
remote times its bed lay far to the west of the present
bed, and it will have left behind it a very low, flat plain.
This is just what we find. But on the right of it, that
is, the east, there should be higher land, which it has
not yet reached, and from which most of its tributaries
flow into it.

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