The earlier flows were probably contemporaneous with those of Greenland, the Faeroes, the western islands of Scotland and the north-east of Ireland.
Seen from Strathmore or the Firth of Clyde the Highlands present well-defined masses of hills abruptly rising from the Lowland plains, and from any of the western islands their sea front resembles a vast rampart indented by lochs and rising to a uniform level, which sinking here and there allows glimpses of still higher summits in the interior.
Thus, the species inhabiting Sumatra, Java and Borneo are almost always much smaller than the closely allied species of Celebes and the Moluccas; the species or varieties of the small island of Amboyna are larger than the same species or closely allied forms inhabiting the surrounding islands; the species found in Celebes possess a peculiar form of wing, quite distinct from that of the same or closely allied species of adjacent islands; and, lastly, numerous species which have tailed wings in India and the western islands of the Archipelago, gradually lose the tail as we proceed eastward to New Guinea and the Pacific.
They inhabit the Black Sea littoral from Varna to the Bosporus, the shores of the Sea of Marmora and the Aegean, the Aegean archipelago, the mainland of Greece, Epirus and the western islands as far north as Corfu.
What we can alone describe as a literature, first the early Eddic verse, next the habit of narrating sagas: these things the Norsemen learned probably from their Celtic subjects, partly in Ireland, partly in the western islands of Scotland; and they first developed the new literature on the soil of Iceland.
The genuineness of these so-called translations from the works of a 3rd-century bard was immediately challenged in England, and Dr Johnson, after some local investigation, asserted (Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland, 1775) that Macpherson had only found fragments of ancient poems and stories, which he had woven into a romance of his own composition.
In the southern and western islands the fauna is restricted mainly to foxes, bats, rats, mice, the sea otter, the penguin and other aquatic birds, and various cetaceans in the surrounding waters.