Speyer. See Spires.

Spice Islands

Spice Islands. See Moluccas.


Spicheren (Spihh'er-en), or Speichern, a village on the frontiers of Prussia and Lorraine, 2 miles S. of Saarbruck. Here on 6th August 1870 the Germans defeated the French.


Spielberg. See Brunn.


Spilsby, a market-town of Lincolnshire, 19 miles by rail NE. of Boston, stands on the edge of the Wolds. The church contains interesting monuments of the Willoughby family (1348-1610), and the market-place has a bronze statue of Sir John Franklin, a native of the town. Pop. 1497.


Spinazzola (Spinat'sola), a city of Southern Italy, 30 miles SW. of Ban. Pop. 11,353.


Spitalfields, a poor district of north-east London, in the Tower Hamlets, derives its name from the hospital of St Mary, founded there in 1197. The manufacture of silk was established in Spitalfields by emigrants from France after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes (1685).


Spithead, a celebrated roadstead on the south coast of England, and a favourite rendezvous of the British navy, is the eastern division - the Solent (q.v.) being the western - of the strait that separates the Isle of Wight from the mainland. Protected from all winds except those from the south-east, it receives its name from the ' Spit,' a sandbank stretching south from the Hampshire shore for 3 miles; and it is 14 miles long by 4 miles in average breadth. Here in 1797 the sailors of the Channel Fleet mutinied for more liberal pay and allowances, which were granted to them. Spithead has been strongly defended since 1864 by fortifications completing those of Portsmouth (q.v.).


Spittal. See Berwick-on-Tweed.


Splugen (nearly Splee-gen, g hard), a pass (6946 feet) in the Swiss Grisons, connects the valley of the Farther Rhine with that of a tributary of the Adda. The existing road, 24 miles long, was made by the Austrian government in 1812-22.


Spokane (Spokan'), the third city of Washington, on the Spokane River, by the Union Pacific 481 miles NE. of Portland, Oregon, with a great lumber trade. A fire in August 1889 did §6,000,000 damage. Pop. (1880) 350; (1900) 36,850.


Spoleto (Spolay'to; Lat. Spoletium), an archi-episcopal city of ancient Umbria in the middle of Italy, is situated on a rocky hill, 75 miles by rail N. by E. of Rome. It has a citadel, dating from the days of the Goths, a Victor Emanuel monument (1892), and a fine cathedral, with frescoes by Lippo Lippi. Water is brought in by a 7th-century aqueduct, 270 feet high and 680 long. Pop. 7696.


Spondinig. See Stelvio.

Spottsylvania Courthouse

Spottsylvania Courthouse, a small village of Virginia, 55 miles N. by W. of Richmond, the scene during May 10-12, 1864, of a desperate but indecisive battle in the civil war.


Spree (Spray), a sluggish river of Prussia, rises in the east of Saxony, on the Bohemian border, and winds 227 miles N. and W. to the Havel at Spandau, passing Bautzen, Kottbus, and Berlin.