LINTH, or LIMMAT, a river of Switzerland, one of the tributaries of the Aar. It rises in the glaciers of the Tbdi range, and has cut out a deep bed which forms the Grossthal that comprises the greater portion of the canton of Glarus. A little below the town of Glarus the river, keeping its northerly direction, runs through the alluvial plain which it has formed, towards the Walensee and the Lake of Zurich. But between the Lake of Zurich and the Walensee the huge desolate alluvial plain grew ever in size, while great damage was done by the river, which overflowed its bed and the dykes built to protect the region near it. The Swiss diet decided in 1804 to undertake the "correction" of this turbulent stream. The necessary works were begun in 1807 under the supervision of Hans Conrad Escher of Zurich (1767-1823). The first portion of the undertaking was completed in 1811, and received the name of the "Escher canal," the river being thus diverted; into the Walensee. The second portion, known as the "Linth canal," regulated the course of the river between the Walensee and the Lake of Zurich and was completed in 1816. Many improvements and extra protective works were carried out after 1816, and it was estimated that the total cost of this great engineering undertaking from 1807 to 1902 amounted to about X200,000, the date for the completion of the work being 1911. To commemorate the efforts of Escher, the Swiss diet in 1823 (after his death) decided that his male descendants should bear the name of "Escher von der Linth." On issuing from the Lake of Zurich the Linth alters its name to that of "Limmat," it does not appear wherefore, and, keeping the north-westerly direction it had taken from the Walensee, joins the Aar a little way below Brugg, and just below the junction of the Reuss with the Aar. (W. A. B. C.)
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