Professor Davis's Lecture.
The northeastern part of France may be divided into three parts drained by the Seine, the Meuse and the Moselle respectively. The region drained by the Meuse is very narrow. The river itself is like the trimmed Lombardy poplars which grew along the roadsides in France, having a long slim trunk and few branches. Unlike the Meuse the Seine and the Moselle draw their waters from a wide area.
In its upper courses the Seine flows in broadly sweeping curves, and it continues meandering and serpenting until it gets some distance below Paris. In its lower courses it pursues a nearly straight line until it reaches the ocean, where it is tidal. The tide rushes up in a wave which is strong enough to capsize a small boat.
Professor Davis here explained the geological process by which rivers cut their beds and formed their valleys.
The Moselle, like the Seine, meanders through a flat upland. The Moselle offers a good example of a river cutting itself off by drilling through a narrow headland. Its tributaries have eaten their way back and have drawn into the Moselle waters which formerly flowed into the Meuse.
The Meuse is a very narrow stream. The valley is wide and appears to have been eaten out by a much larger stream. The reason that the Meuse is so narrow is that its waters have been robbed by the Moselle. The Meuse winds in and out among steep bluffs, the bluff being always on the outside of the curve. The valley of the Meuse is a great vineyard growing country.