Spandau (au as ow in now), a town and first-class fortress of Prussia, at the confluence of the Havel and the Spree, 8 miles by rail W. by N. of Berlin. The principal defence of the capital on that side, it has very strong fortifications. In the ' Julius tower' of the citadel is preserved in gold the Imperial War-fund of £6,000,000 (mainly derived from the French war indemnity) that the government, since 1871, keeps in reserve for a great war. Spandau is the seat of an arsenal, large government cannon-foundries, and factories for making gunpowder and other munitions of war. Pop. (1875) 27,630; (1900) 65,030, including a garrison of nearly 4000 men.
Spanish Main (i.e. main-land), a name formerly given to the Spanish provinces on those coasts of South and Central America, which are contiguous to the Caribbean Sea. The name, however, is often applied to that sea itself.
Spanish Town. See Jamaica.
Sparta, or LacedAemon, ancient capital of Laconia, and most famous city of the Peloponnesus, was situated on the right bank of the Eurotas, 20 miles from the sea, in a plain shut in by mountains, of which that on the west side, Mount Taygetus, rises to 8000 feet. The growth of the town of Misthra, 2 miles SW. of Sparta, in the 14th and 15th centuries a.d., led to the total desertion of the more ancient city; but the modern town of Sparti (pop. 5000), founded in 1836, occupies part of the site of old Sparta, and is again capital of the province of Laconia.
Speier. See Spires.
Spey (Spay), a river of Scotland, rising at an altitude of 1500 feet above sea-level and running 107 miles NE. through or along the boundary of Inverness, Elgin, and Banff shires, until it falls into the Moray Firth at Kingston between Lossiemouth and Portknockie. The Dulnain and Avon are its principal tributaries. The salmon-fisheries, belonging to the Duke of Richmond, at its mouth, above which comparatively few fish penetrate, have a yearly worth of from £8000 to £10,000; else the Spey is almost without value, nor can it generally be called a picturesque stream. It has the swiftest current of all the large rivers in Britain, and is subject to sudden and violent freshets, resulting at times in disastrous inundations. See Sir Thomas Dick Lauder's Moray Floods (1830); and A. E. Knox, Autumns on the Spey (1882).