River

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RIVER. A natural collection of waters, arising from springs or fountains, which flow in a bed or canal of considerable width and length, towards the sea.
     2. Rivers may be considered as public or private.
     3. Public rivers are those in which the public have an interest.
     4. They are either navigable, which, technically understood, signifies such rivers in which the tide flows; or not navigable. The soil or bed of such a navigable river, understood in this sense, belongs not to the riparian proprietor, but to the public. 3 Caines' Rep. 307; 10 John. R. 236; 17 John. R. 151; 20 John. R. 90; 5 Wend. R. 423; 6 Cowen, R. 518; 14 Serg. & Rawle, 9; 1 Rand. Rep. 417; 3 Rand. R. 33; 3 Greenl. R. 269; 2 Conn. R. 481; 5 Pick. 199.
     5. Public rivers, not navigable, are those which belong to the people in general, as public highways. The soil of these rivers belongs generally, to the riparian owner, but the public have the use of the stream, and the authors of nuisances and impediments over such a stream are indictable. Ang. on Water Courses, 202; Davies' Rep. 152; Callis on Sewers, 78; 4 Burr. 2162.
     6. By the ordinance of 1787, art. 4, relating to the northwestern territory, it is provided that the navigable waters, leading into the Mississippi and St. Lawrence, and the carrying places between the same, shall be common highways, and forever free. 3 Story, L. U. S. 2077.
     7. A private river, is one so naturally obstructed, that there is no passage for boats; for if it be capable of being so navigated, the public may use its waters. 1 McCord's Rep. 580. The soil in general belongs to the riparian proprietors. (q.v.) A river, then, may be considered, 1st. As private, in the case of shallow and obstructed streams. 2d. As private property, but subject to public use, when it can be navigated; and, 3d. As public, both with regard to its use and property. Some rivers possess all these qualities. The Hudson is mentioned as an instance; in one part it is entirely private property; in another the public have the use of it; and it is public property from the mouth as high up as the tide flows. Ang. Wat. Co. 205, 6.
     8. In Pennsylvania, it has been held that the great rivers of that state, as the Susquehanna, belong to the public, and that the riparian proprietor does not own the bed or canal. 2 Binn. R. 75; 14 Serg. & Rawle, 71. Vide, generally, Civ. Code of Lo. 444; Bac. Ab. Prerogatives, B 3; 7 Com. Dig. 291; 1 Bro. Civ. Law, 170; Merl. Repert, h.t.; Jacobsen's Sea Laws, 417; 2 Hill. Abr. c. 13; 2 Fairf. R. 278 3 Ohio Rep. 496; 6 Mass. R. 435; 15 John. R. 447; 1 Pet. C. C. Rep. 64; 1 Paige's Rep. 448; 3 Dane's R. 4; 7 Mass. Rep. 496; 17 Mass. Rep. 289; 5 Greenl. R. 69; 10 Wend. R. 260; Kames, Eq. 38; 6 Watts & Serg. 101. As to the boundaries of rivers, see Metc. & Perk. Dig. Boundaries, IV.; as to the grant of a river, see 5 Cowen, 216; Co. Litt. 4 b; Com. Dig. Grant, E 5.

References in classic literature ?
Six hours the waters run in, and six hours they run out, and the reason is this: when there is higher water in the sea than in the river, they run in until the river gets to be highest, and then it runs out again.
In the decline of the day, near Kentucke river, as we ascended the brow of a small hill, a number of Indians rushed out of a thick cane-brake upon us, and made us prisoners.
I trust that we shall be more imaginative, that our thoughts will be clearer, fresher, and more ethereal, as our sky--our understanding more comprehensive and broader, like our plains--our intellect generally on a grander seale, like our thunder and lightning, our rivers and mountains and forests-and our hearts shall even correspond in breadth and depth and grandeur to our inland seas.
We was four days getting out of the "upper river," because we got aground so much.
Marsh End had belonged to the Rivers ever since it was a house: and it was, she affirmed, "aboon two hundred year old--for all it looked but a small, humble place, naught to compare wi' Mr.
So much more wicked and distracted had the Revolution grown in that December month, that the rivers of the South were encumbered with the bodies of the violently drowned by night, and prisoners were shot in lines and squares under the southern wintry sun.
There is this to choose," I answered; "perish on the spears of our people or try the river.
It rolls away from its source with so inconsiderable a current, that it appears unlikely to escape being dried up by the hot season, but soon receiving an increase from the Gemma, the Keltu, the Bransu, and other less rivers, it is of such a breadth in the plain of Boad, which is not above three days' journey from its source, that a ball shot from a musket will scarce fly from one bank to the other.
We can imagine with what feelings of awe and admiration he must have contemplated the Wind River Sierra, or bed of mountains; that great fountainhead from whose springs, and lakes, and melted snows some of those mighty rivers take their rise, which wander over hundreds of miles of varied country and clime, and find their way to the opposite waves of the Atlantic and the Pacific.
I am of the blood of the river Axius--of Axius that is the fairest of all rivers that run.
Thompson had pushed on his course with great haste, calling at all the Indian villages in his march, presenting them with British flags, and even planting them at the forks of the rivers, proclaiming formally that he took possession of the country in the name of the king of Great Britain for the Northwest Company.
As she swam, her mind, filled with the terrors of the night, conjured recollection of the stories she had heard of the fierce crocodiles which infest certain of the rivers of Borneo.

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