Bishop-Auckland, a town in the county, and 9 1/2 miles SW. of the city, of Durham, stands on an eminence 140 feet above the confluent Wear and Gaunless. Its abbey-like palace of the bishops of Durham was founded about 1300 by Bishop Antony Bek, and rebuilt by Bishop Cosin about 1665. There are a fine town-hall of 1863 with a spire 100 feet high, engineering-works, and large neighbouring collieries. Pop. (1851) 4400; (1891)10,527; (1901)11,969.

Bishops Castle

Bishop's Castle, a municipal borough (incorporated 1885) of Shropshire, 9 1/2 miles WNW. of Craven Arms junction by a branch line (1865). Till 1832 it returned two members. The bishops of Hereford had a castle here. Pop. 1386.


Bishop-Stortford, a town of Hertfordshire, on the Stort, 12 miles ENE. of Hertford. In Saxon times it was the property of the bishops of London. Pop. 7150.

Bishops Waltham

Bishop's Waltham, a town of Hampshire, 9 1/2 miles SE. of Winchester. It has been imrae-morially the property of the bishops of Winchester. There are remains of their castle (1135). Pop. of parish, 2309.


Bishopwearmouth. See Sunderland.


Bisigna'no, a cathedral city of South Italy, 10 miles N. of Cosenza by rail. Pop. 4255.


Biskra, a town of Algeria, 150 miles S. of Constantine by rail, in an oasis watered by the Wady Biskra and by springs. The Roman Zaba, under the Moors it became a large town - 71,000 people died of the plague in 1663. Pop. 8609.


Bisley, (1) a market-town of Gloucestershire, 3 miles E. of Stroud. Population, 2500. - (2) A common in Surrey, 3 1/2 miles WNW. of Woking, the successor in 1890 to Wimbledon as the meeting-place of the National Rifle Association.


Bismarck, a thriving town, since 1889 capital of North Dakota, U.S., stands in the centre of the state on the east side of the Missouri, here crossed by the Northern Pacific Railway on an iron bridge which cost $1,000,000. Pop. 3500.

Bismarck Archipelago

Bismarck Archipelago, the official name for New Britain, New Ireland, New Hanover, and several smaller adjoining islands in the South Pacific, since in 1884 they became a German dependency. See New Britain, etc.


Bismark, a Prussian town of 2599 inhabitants, 35 miles N. of Magdeburg.


Bissa'gos, or Bijuja Islands, a group of thirty small volcanic islands, off the west coast of Africa, opposite the mouth of the Rio Grande. Thickly wooded, and many of them densely peopled, they have several fine ports, but the climate is excessively dangerous for Europeans. The principal islands belong to the Portuguese.


Bissao, an island and Portuguese station closer to the African coast than the Bissagos.


Bistritz, a Transylvanian town on the Bistritza River, 50 miles NE. of Klausenburg. Pop. 9063.


Bisutun. See Behistun.


Bitche (Ger. Bitsch), a German town of Lor-raine, in a wild and wooded pass of the Vosges, 49 miles NNW. of Strasburg. Its citadel crowns a precipitous rock in the middle of the town. The Prussians tried vainly to surprise it in 1793; it resisted the Germans for seven weeks in 1815, and only surrendered three weeks after the close of the war of 1870-71. Pop. 3849.