Sil'chester, a village in the extreme north of Hampshire, 7 miles N. of Basingstoke, famous for the remains of the ancient Romano-British town of Caer Segeint, called by the Romans Calleva, and by the West Saxons Silceastre. The chief visible remains are the amphitheatre, 50 yards by 40, and the walls, 2760 yards in length; excavations have shown the foundations of a basilica, the forum, a temple, baths, etc.; and coins, seals, rings, an ogam inscription, and much broken pottery have been found. See a work by Plummer (1879).
Silistria (anc. Durostorum), a town of Bulgaria, on the right bank of the Danube, here 1 1/2 mile wide, 70 miles NW. of Varna. Long a formidable Turkish fortress, it has been repeatedly besieged by the Russians (as in 1828-29). On the outbreak of the Crimean war the Russians laid siege to it with 60,000 to 80,000 men, but were compelled to retreat after thirty-nine days. In 1877 again it successfully defied the troops of the czar. Pop. 12,500.
Sil'loth, a seaport and watering-place of Cumberland, on the Solway Firth, 20 miles W. of Carlisle. Prior to the opening of the railway in 1856 it was a mere hamlet, but it is now of growing importance, with good docks opened in 1857-85. Silloth, which commands a fine view, is much resorted to for sea-bathing, the climate being mild and salubrious, with a mean annual temperature of 49° 1', the same as Worthing, and only 1° below Torquay. Pop. 2600.
Sil'verton, a mining centre in the extreme west of New South Wales, only 18 miles from the border of South Australia, and 822 W. by S. from Sydney. It is connected with the railway system of South Australia. Silver, copper, tin, and gold are mined. Broken Hill, one of the largest silver mines in the world, is 17 miles SE.
Simbirsk', a town of Russia, on the Volga's right bank, 350 miles SE. of Nijni-Novgorod. • Rebuilt since its destruction by fire in 1864, it has two Greek cathedrals, a large trade, and a famous annual fair. Pop. 43,300. - Area of government, 19,100 sq. m.; pop. 549,460.
Simla, since 1864 the summer headquarters of the British government in India, stands on the southern slopes of the Himalayas, in a beautiful situation, 170 miles N. of Delhi. Its first house was built in 1819, and it was first visited officially by the Indian government in 1827. There are two viceregal residences (the newer one built in 1886), handsome government buildings (1884), and a fine town-hall (1886). Pop. 14,848 in winter, and considerably more in summer. - The name Simla Hill States is given to twenty-three small native states (area, 6569 sq. m.; pop. 502,853).