Bass, Or Basswood. See Linden.
Bassantin, Or Bassantonn, James, a Scotch astronomer and mathematician, born about 1504, died in 1568. He was a son of the laird of Bassantin, studied at Glasgow and on the continent, acquired renown and some fortune as professor of mathematics in the university of Paris and also as an astrologer, returned to Scotland in 1562, and warmly supported the earl of Murray. His principal work on astronomy passed through several editions, and was translated by Tornaesius from French into Latin (Geneva, 1599). He had scarcely any knowledge of Latin and Greek, and is supposed to have received literary assistance in the preparation of his various writings, one of his treatises being entitled Musica secundum Platonem.
Basse-Terre. I. The chief town of the island of St. Christopher in the British West Indies, on the S. W. coast, at the mouth of a small river; pop. about 9,000. It is well built and protected by three forts. The trade is considerable. A sandy beach prevents the near approach of laden vessels, and ships are loaded and unloaded from a lighter called a "Moses," which is thrown up in the lull of the surf. II. The chief town of the French island of Guadeloupe, West Indies, situated in the W. division of the island and on its S.W. coast; pop. about 13,000. The former capital, Pointe-a-Pitre, destroyed by an. earth quake in 1843, possessed a better harbor than Basse-Terre, which however became the principal seat of commerce, on account of its proximity to the producing portion of the island.
Bassein. I. The chief town of a district of the same name in the province of Pegu, British India; pop. about 3,500. It is situated on a channel formed by an offset of the Irra-waddy, which is here called Bassein river, and further down the Negrais. The channel offers safe anchorage for the largest ships. The town was captured by the English May 19, 1852. II. A decayed town in the Poona division of the presidency of Bombay, on an island of the same name (area, 35 sq. m.), separated by a narrow channel from the mainland of North Concan, and affording a shelter for shipping, 28 m. N. of Bombay. It was once a prosperous place, with many churches and other public buildings, ruins of which form the chief attraction in the now desolate city.
Basses-Alpes, a S. E. department of France, formerly part of Upper Provence, bounded by Italy and the departments of Alpes-Mari-times, Var, Bouches-du-Rhone, Vaucluse, Drome, and Hautes-Alpes; area, 2,685 sq. m.; pop. in 1872, 139,332. It is watered by the Durance and its tributaries. In density of population it is exceeded by all the other departments of France. The greater part is covered by ranges of mountains, between which are fertile valleys. Excellent pasturage is found upon the sides of the mountains. Plums are produced in large quantities in the vicinity of Digne, which are dried and known in commerce as prunes de Brignoles. The department is divided into the arrondissements of Digne, Sisteron, Barcelonnette, Castellane, and Forcalquier. Capital, Digne.