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Beard, John, Principles of Animal Development ..... 131 

Bordas, L., The Anal Glands of the Aphodiinae ..... 458 

Buckman, S. S., The Development of Rivers ; and particularly the Genesis of the 

Severn (nine figures in text) ....... 273 

Bulman, G. P., A Note on Telegony, Xenia, and "Hybrid Oology" . . 392 

,, G. W., Bees and the Origin of Flowers ..... 128 

Cunningham, J. T., Professor Weldon's Evidence of the Operation of Natural 

Selection ......... 38 

Hartog, Marcus, Weismann's "Regeneration" ..... 455 

Headley, F. W., Evolution and the Question of Chance .... 357 

Henslow, George, Mimetic Resemblances in Animals and Plants . . . 121 

Herrera, A. L., Protoplasmic Currents and Vital Force . . . . . 232 

Jones, T. Rupert, The Great Glacial Moraine of Permian Age in South Africa 

(map in text) . . . . . . . . .199 

Keegan, P. Q., The Red and Blue Colouring Matters of Flowers . . . 143 

Levier, E., The Case of Doctor Otto Kuntze ...... 296 

Licorish, R. F., The True Interpretation of Lamarck's Theories: A Plea for their 

Reconsideration ........ 290 

M'Intosh, W. C, A Recent Research on Epitokus Forms of Annelids . . 375 

Maslen, Arthur J., Some Recent Work on the Anatomy of Fossil Plants . . 364 

Masterman, A. T., Animal Symmetry (twelve figures in text) . . .50 

Newbigin, M. I., The Colours and Pigments of Butterflies .... 138 

Pocock, R. I., The Geographical Distribution of the Arachnida of the Orders 

Pedipalpi and Solifugae (three maps in text) ..... 213 

Scourfield, D. J., Fresh-Water Biological Stations : America's Example . . 450 

Smith, Robert, On the Study of Plant Associations ..... 109 



Sollas, W. J., Funafuti : The Study of a Coral Atoll (thirteen figures in text) . 17 

Thomson, J. Arthur, The Penycuik Experiments : An Appreciation (three figures 

in text) ....... 203 

,, ,, Mehnert's Principles of Development .... 385 

The Study of Natural History . . . . .437 

Weismann, August, Regeneration : Facts and Interpretations . . . 305 

Wilson, John H., Vegetable Animation (eleven figures in text) . . .193 

Wyld, Henry Cecil, Biological Analogy and Speech-Development . . .46 


Natural Science 

A Monthly Review of Scientific Progress 

January 1899 

Pure Science. 

The debt of the world to pure science was the subject of Prof. 
J. J. Stevenson's (retiring President's) address to the New York 
Academy of Sciences on February 28, 1898, and the lecture is now 
available in the last volume of the Annals (xi. (1898) pp. 177-192). 
The thesis is an interesting one — "That the foundation of industrial 
advance was laid by workers in pure science, for the most part 
ignorant of utility and caring little about it," and the evidence should 
give pause to those impatient utilitarian spirits who would weigh all 
scientific work on the balance of " practical results." From the 
history of astronomy and geology, physics and chemistry, botany and 
zoology, examples are taken which show that what might have seemed 
out-of-the-way investigations — prompted by the curious or con- 
templative spirit — have had the most unlooked-for and far-reaching- 
results in practice. It is not, indeed, to be forgotten that the converse 
thesis is also true, — that practical lore has in hundreds of cases reacted 
upon theory. The investigator prepares . for the inventor, but the 
inventor in turn stimulates the investigator. Yet is there not a danger 
lest even this eloquent address may suggest that " pure science " 
requires an apology — a heresy which Bacon long ago confuted in his 
distinction between experiments which are " lucifera " and those which 
are " fructifera " ? Is there not reason to recall his words : " Just as 
the vision of light itself is something more excellent and beautiful than 
its manifold uses, so without doubt the contemplation of things as they 
are, without superstition or imposture, without error or confusion, is in 
itself a nobler thing than the whole harvest of inventions " ? 

A Contribution to the Biology of Cock-Fighting. 

E. Bordage, who has previously made some interesting observations 
on various cases of regeneration, has recently turned his scientific eye 
upon cock-fighting. It is one of the pastimes of Eeunion, where the 
pugnacity of the cocks is such that the premaxillae and the anterior 
parts of the mandibles are sometimes torn away in the fury of combat. 
1 — nat. sc. — vol. xiv. no. 83. 


In two or three months they are regenerated, alike as regards bony and 
horny tissue. The regeneration of the mandibular portion proceeds 
more slowly than that of the upper parts. The author entitles his 
paper " Cas de regeneration du bee cles oiseaux explique par la loi de 
Lessona" (C. B. Soc. Biol., July 1898), but as Lessona's law is hardly 
as familiar as Boyle's we may be allowed to state it. In 1868, the 
illustrious Italian naturalist formulated the conclusion that in animals 
the parts which are capable of regeneration are those which run most 
risk of mutilation. This conclusion has been restated by Darwin and 
by Weismann (whose name the author spells in the usual French 
fashion) in the thesis that regeneration is an adaptive phenomenon. 
Weismann found some difficulty in regard to a stork which repaired 
the terminal half of its mandibles. But Bordage points out that male 
storks fight furiously. After this who can deny that cock-fighting- 
has its utility ? 

A Delicate Operation. 

In a short paper entitled " Embryons sans noyau maternel " (C. B. 
Ac. Sci. exxvii. (1898), pp. 528-531) Professor Yves Delage describes 
a remarkable experiment. He divided the egg of a sea-urchin under 
the microscope into two parts, one containing the nucleus and the 
centrosome, the other simply cytoplasmic. Beside them he placed an 
intact ovum, and then let spermatozoa in. All the three objects 
showed equal " sexual attraction," all were fertilised, and all 
segmented, the intact ovum most rapidly, the nucleated fragment 
more slowly, the non- nucleated fragment more slowly still. 
In one case, the development proceeded for three days ; the 
intact ovum had become a typical gastrula, the nucleated fragment a 
smaller gastrula, and the non-nucleated fragment also a gastrula, but 
with very much reduced cavities, " presque virtuelles." All the cells 
showed nuclei. The experimenter concludes that fertilisation and some 
measure of development may occur in a fragment of ovum without 
nucleus or ovocentre. It is probably by these indirect paths that we 
shall eventually discover the real nature of fertilisation. According to 
Delage, two things must be distinguished — (a) the stimulus given to the 
ovum by a specially energetic kinoplasm brought in by the sper- 
matozoon, perhaps in its centrosome ; and (b) the mingling of heritable 
characteristics, or amphimixis. It must, of course, be observed that 
while the fertilised cytoplasmic fragment in Delage's clever experiment 
segmented, it did not really develop. 

Birds and their Surroundings. 

The British Museum (Natural History) has recently placed on ex- 
hibition a model by the American ornithologist, Mr. A. H. Thayer, 


which shows in a striking manner the value of coloration harmonis- 
ing with the surroundings. This model consists of a box lined with 
light gray felt, but open at the top and front. In the middle of the 
box are two rough figures of birds, each identical in size, and sitting 
upon a perch. One is covered with the same gray felt as lines the 
box, and the other is darker in shade above than the felt and lighter 
than the felt below. A spectator standing close to the box sees both 
birds clearly, but three or four feet away the darker bird is almost 
invisible, and at six or eight feet entirely disappears from sight. The 
reason for this is that the lighter under-colour of the darker bird 
counteracts the shadow thrown by the top light, and makes the bird 
appear an uniform colour at a little distance, while in the case of the 
bird of the same colour as the surroundings a shadow throws it into 
strong relief. This exhibit, which strikingly demonstrates colour 
values, will be found in the small gallery leading from the central 
hall to the British birds. 

The Skin and Fins of Ichthyosaurus. 

Dr. Eberhard Fraas, to whom we are indebted for our first informa- 
tion concerning the outward form of the body in the extinct marine 
reptile Ichthyosaurus, has just published a description of another 
specimen from the Upper Lias of Wurtemberg, now in the National 
Museum at Buda Pesth (Foldtani Kbzlbny, 1898, vol. xxviii. pp. 169- 
173, pi. ii.). It is now absolutely certain that this dolphin-shaped 
reptile had a small triangular fin on its back, and that the vertebral 
column turned downwards into the lower lobe of the laterally-com- 
pressed forked tail. It seems probable, however, that the newt-like 
crest of skin supposed to extend along the back behind the dorsal fin, 
was a deceptive appearance in the first specimen described. Four 
examples of Ichthyosaurus, showing the outline of the body, are now 
known from the Upper Lias of Wurtemberg — the first in the Stutt- 
gart Museum, the second in a private collection at Brussels, the third 
at Buda Pesth, and the fourth probably destined for the Museum of 
the University of Tubingen. There is also a well-preserved detached 
tail from the Bavarian Lithographic Stone in the Palaeontological 
Museum, Munich. Thus rapidly, has our knowledge of the subject 
progressed since Dr. Fraas first communicated his original drawing of 
the Stuttgart specimen to Natural Science in September 1892 (vol. i. 
p. 515). 

Books and the Customs. 

Jn a note on the dates of publication of Temminck and Laugier's 
"Planches coloriees," that wonderful collection of illustrations of birds 
first issued by Buffon, which has just appeared in the Ibis, Mr. Davies 
Sherborn calls attention to a publisher's notice of much interest. 


Quoy, who reviewed the parts as they appeared in the Bulletin des 
Sciences Naturelles, says in one of his notices that the authors had 
abstained from giving any text to the first twenty parts for fear of 
increasing the price of the book, and above all from their delicacy of 
writing after the illustrious Buffon. They were, however, compelled 
to do so because the foreign Customs rejected a collection of plates 
without text, considering them as the product of the arts of France 
rather than as a scientific work destined to be circulated all over 
Europe. This was in 1824. Times have changed since then, but 
we can recall an instance of stupidity on the part of British Customs 
officials even within the past decade, connected with a book on " Greek 

A Thorny Subject. 

Mr. C. E. Beecher has published an interesting study on the " Origin 
of Spines " (Am. Journ. Sci. 1898, vi. pp. 1-20,125-136,249-268,329- 
359, 73 figs.). He points out that the suggestion of protective 
function, so freely made, is not always valid ; but although the elimina- 
tion value of spines and related structures may be slight, yet the 
spinose condition itself can, he says, be shown to be of much import- 
ance. " It represents a stage of evolution, a degree of differentiation 
in the organism, a ratio of its adaptability to the environment, a result 
of selective forces, and a measure of vital power." 

Mr. Beecher emphasizes the fact that spines or equivalent structures 
are rarely present in young forms, but appear during the process of 
growth, and he seeks to distinguish two types of spine-development. 
One type, well exemplified in the Barberry, shows that spines may 
develop from the degeneration of organs, as in plants from leaves, in 
animals from appendages, e.g. the spurs of the python, and so on. In 
the other, the ornamental type, well seen in the shell of Spondylus, the 
spines do not arise from a check to growth, but from an excessive 
development of functional parts. Further, just as in ontogeny spines 
of both types develop late, so phylogeny proves that spinose or orna- 
mented forms have behind them a long history of simple unadorned 
ancestors. This is well seen in Spondylus itself, which is descended 
from forms with simple smooth shells ; in many Brachiopods, which 
became spinose just before extinction ; in the history of the whole 
phylum of Echinoderma, whose members have become increasingly 
spinose in geological time. Phylogenetic studies of this kind show 
also that the " maximum of generic, family, and ordinal differentiation 
is found at an early period, while the greatest specific differentiation 
occurs at a later period." That is, variation first affects physiological 
and internal structures, while later the changes are mainly physical 
and peripheral. In other words, in any developing group " the more 
important physiological and structural variations are the first to be 
subjected to heredity and natural selection, which tend to fix or hold 


them in check. Features of less functional importance, as peripheral 
characters, are the last to be controlled, and therefore present the 
greatest diversity, while in this diversity spinosity is the limit of 
progress." As to the causation of the two types of spines, Mr. 
Beecher refers to the "general laws of organic change," — that is, the 
stimulus or restraint of the environment, and the energy or deficiency 
of growth force. Of these four causes two tend to produce spines like 
those of Berbcris, two to produce the ornamental type as in Spondylus. 
As no one of these causes is simple, and the action of each may 
be assisted by secondary causes such as sexual selection, mimetic 
influences, and so on, there are in all eleven causes of spine production, 
all of which are discussed in detail with illustrative examples. 

The conclusions reached are, as indicated above, that on the one 
hand spinosity represents the limit of morphological variation, and on 
the other the decline or paracme of vitality. That is to say, alike in 
ontogeny and in phylogeny spines increase until maturity, and there is 
then in old age an " extravagant differentiation followed by a decline 
of spinous growth, and ending in extreme senility with their total 
absence." In other words, the great development of spinose organisms 
in a group represents the beginning of the decadence of the group. 

Philosophy of Evolution. 

We cannot but welcome a paper of this type, more especially when, as 
in Mr. Beecher's case, the evidence brought forward is largely palaeonto- 
logical. No one who has toiled through pages of controversy as to the 
probable action of natural selection in hypothetical cases, can fail to 
appreciate a genuine attempt to discover what natural selection has 
actually done in the past. But while recognising to the full the value 
and excellence of Mr. Beecher's work, it is difficult to avoid criticism 
of the frequent want of precision and clearness in his use of words, 
especially in the treatment of the philosophical aspects of the subject. 
The habit must, we think, lead sooner or later to much confusion of 
thought. For example, is any good end attained by the introduction 
of sentences like the following into a discussion of the question as to 
whether variation is limited or unlimited : " As far as can be seen, the 
limitations of the forms of species of animals and of plants end only 
with the aggregate number of possibilities within the functional scope 
of the organism. Beyond in either direction is death, and a passage 
from the organic to the inorganic " ? The difficulty of comprehending 
this statement is in no way diminished by finding that the author 
seems to mean that variation is definite and orderly. Again, the author 
states that certain types of spines have been produced by the "law of 
repetition," which is " similar to induction in electrical physics, or to 
the force or stimulus of example in human conduct." Is not this merely 
biological mysticism ? We also hear much of the " forces of sexual 


selection, environment, and growth," as if all acted after a precisely 
similar fashion. Horns, we are told, may arise as the direct result of 
the action of the environment, but if they are confined to one sex it is 
"evidently a case of sexual selection." We do not suppose that Mr. 
Beecher regards this " force " as a kind of " Eed Queen," whose fiat 
" Off with his head," or her horns, can be relied upon to assist the other 
" forces and laws " when they get into difficulties, but it is surely 
unfortunate that his language should lend itself so readily to such 

Eyes in Bivalve Mollusca. 

The Acephala, or headless Mollusca, as the Pelecypoda have been- 
termed, whilst possessing eyes in the normal position near the mouth 
when in the larval condition, have hitherto been supposed to be quite 
devoid of such organs when adult. Some of them, it is true, have 
developed organs of vision elsewhere, for instance, in the mantle-margins 
(Pecten, etc.), or at the extremities of the siphons (Cardium), but these 
have no connection with true cephalic eyes. 

Dr. Paul Pelseneer has, however, recently discovered the existence 
of true cephalic eyes in certain groups (C. B. Ac. Sci. cxxvii. (1898), 
pp. 735 and 736). Since his account is short we give a full trans- 
lation : — 

There exists in adult Lamellibranchs a pair of distinct and well-formed 
cephalic eyes. They consist of pits with pigmented walls filled by a cuticular 
lens, and they are thus intermediate in their structure between those of Trochus 
and Patella. 

These organs appear to be peculiar to most of the Mytilidae (Mytilus, Liiho- 
domns, Modiolaria) and to the allied genus of Avicula proper (exclusive of 

They occur both in the larva and the adult, but only do not make their 
appearance in the former (Mytilus) after the formation of the first branchial 

They are situated at the base and on the axial face of the first filament of 
the internal branchial lamella, and are innervated from the cerebral centre. In 
the larva they are situated outside the posterior margin of the velum. 

They appear to be homologous to the larval eyes of Chitons, which are also 
outside the velum and at the sides of the cephalic region, but they are not 
homologous to the cephalic eyes of Gasteropods, which arise within the velar 

Those Cretaceous Gryphaeas. 

The extreme variability of the Gryphaeas has always rendered them 
difficult of study, and in no place has this difficulty been more fully 
understood than in the Texan Eegion. It is therefore with considerable 
satisfaction that we call attention to the lolst Bulletin of the United 
States Geologiccd Survey, in which Messrs. E. T. Hill and T. Wayland 
Vaughan have attacked the Lower Cretaceous Gryphaeas of the 
Texan Eegion and evolved some order out of chaos. These mollusca 


occur in countless thousands, form extensive masses of indurated strata, 
the outcrop of which can be traced for many miles ; they are some- 
times used for road metal, or collected and burned for lime. They 
have been named and renamed, until their specific identity is hidden 
under a mountain of literature, and this mountain Messrs. Hill and 
Vaughan have at last removed. The authors find that certain forms of 
these Ostreidae possess very distinct specific characters, have definite geolo- 
gical horizons, and are of the greatest value in stratigraphic work. And 
this conclusion seems to be quite an usual one when people take the 
trouble to collect a sufficient number of individuals of any species, and 
do not content themselves by describing a single specimen or every 
minute variation as of specific value. 

The Gryphaeas of the Texan Region are now reduced to six species, 
and of these six the authors give no less than 231 figures, thus affording 
an excellent opportunity for every one to see the variability among the 
species. The figures are excellent, and the paper may be recommended 
as a specimen of what is wanted in palaeontology in this country — 
namely, a careful and critical study of important types rather than 
mere descriptions of a jumble of more or less fragmentary and doubtful 

The San Jose Scale. 

This insect, the source of considerable loss and trouble in the United 
States, has apparently been localised as an inhabitant of Japan. At 
least Mr. Cockerell, Mr. Alexander Craw, and Mr. F. M. Webster have 
by careful search found it several times on trees received direct from 
that land. The latter of these authors has written a short paper in the 
Canadian Entomologist for July, in which he asks that a competent 
entomologist may now be sent to Japan to locate it, and to find the 
natural enemies of the insect so as to import them into America. As 
Mr. Webster points out, the expenses connected with such an investiga- 
tion would be a mere nothing compared with the amount spent in 
trying to exterminate the scale in those localities in the United States 
where it has obtained a foothold. 

A Warlike Entomostraean and a Decrepit Trilobite. 

Fkom the Chemung group of New York — that is, from strata of late 
Devonian age — Mr. John M. Clarke, the well-known palaeontologist, 
describes and figures a new Phyllocarid crustacean (\Wi Ann. Rep. 
State Geologist, N.Y.). He names it the bristling shrimp horrent with 
javelins {Pcphricaris TiorrvpUatd). Each valve is fringed with some 
two dozen spikes, which make a truly imposing show. There is, how- 
ever, nothing unusual in the development of striking armature upon 
crustaceans and their allies. Witness, for example, the headpiece of 
Hemiaspis horridus, Woodward, the tailpiece in various species of the 


trilobite genus Cheirurus, or the carapace of the modern Zithodes arctica. 
Among the terrestrial Isopoda, usually so smooth, Otibaris acideatus, 
Budde Lund, breaks out into spikes all over its body. Sometimes the 
soft abdomen of a spider becomes a regular fortress of obdurate angles. 
The new Phyllocarid would look rather less formidable were its valves 
closed, in what one may suppose to have been their normal position. 
External pressure may account for their being spread so widely open. 
A sign and result of this pressure is probably to be seen in the strong 
diagonal groove which each valve in the fossil exhibits. 

From the same group Mr. Clarke is now able to re-describe another 
important crustacean, if a trilobite be a crustacean. In' 1888 he 
founded the species Bronteus senescens on " a very imperfect fragment 
of a pygidium." Now, he has had at command " two essentially entire 
specimens." As so often with trilobites, the entirety refers only to the 
dorsal view, but this enables Mr. Clarke to enter upon an interesting 
discussion of the structural variations within the genus Bronteus, as 
compared with the times of appearance of its several species. B. senes- 
cens is said to be noteworthy, not alone for the rarity of all trilobites 
at the horizon indicated, but as in all probability the latest representa- 
tive of the genus. The specific name, therefore, must be understood 
to refer rather to the genus than to the species itself as " growing old." 
Tor the species is regarded by Mr. Clarke as " a survival, with appro- 
priate time modifications, of the proper expression of the genus." 
Evidently the representative of Bronteus was doing its best to march 
with the times, but there must have been some revolutionary spirit 
abroad ruthlessly bent on ending the dynasty of the Trilobites. The 
Phyllocarids are still with us. 

More North American Fresh- Water Copepods. 

"We have lately received two further instalments of the Bulletin of the 
Illinois State Laboratory of Natural History (vol. v. 1898), a publica- 
tion to which the attention of our readers has been called on several 
previous occasions. The first (pp. 225-270) contains a paper by F. 
W. Schacht upon the comparatively rare fresh-water Copepods belong- 
ing to the genera Osphranticum, Limnocalanus, and Bpischura. In a 
notice of a previous paper by the same author on the closely allied 
but much commoner genus Biaptomus (Natural Science, xii. p. 300), 
it was pointed out that America possesses, so far as that genus is con- 
cerned, a very characteristic fauna — not a single one of its species, for 
instance, being known on this side of the Atlantic. It appears that 
the same phenomenon is almost equally true of the remainder of the 
forms included in the family Ccntropacjiclae, now under consideration, 
for of the five American species dealt with, only one, Limnocalanus 
macrurus, Sars, is known to occur outside North America. In this 
case the animal is capable of living in both fresh and salt water, so 


that the Atlantic probably presents no barrier to its passage from 
Europe to America, and vice, versa. 

The paper gives keys and descriptions of the very peculiar and 
interesting forms coming within its scope, but unfortunately it is not 
accompanied by any figures. It may be perfectly true, as stated, that 
" the species treated may be identified by figures already published," 
but this information is more tantalising than useful. 

The Biology of the Victorian Era. 

That the Liverpool Biological Society is as vigorous as ever is evident 
from the twelfth volume of its Proceedings and Transactions, which is 
full of interesting material. It begins with an inaugural address by 
Mr. Isaac C. Thompson on "Advances in Biological Science during the 
Victorian Era." This was a large order for one lecture, and Mr. Thomp- 
son's courage cannot be doubted. The result is a very delightful 
retrospect, though it lacks that completeness of outlook which we find, 
for instance, in Huxley's masterly sketch of an even wider subject — 
the Science of the Victorian Era. The bulk of Mr. Thompson's address 
is devoted, as is just, to evolution doctrine, and Darwin's work fills up 
so much of the picture that many great achievements have been 
crowded out. We miss, for instance, any recognition of such dis- 
tinctive advances as the study of the cell, the conception of germinal 
continuity, the "protoplasmic movement" in physiology, the beginnings 
of physiological embryology, and many more. We sometimes wonder if 
there is not a hint of megalomania in much of our talk about " evolu- 
tion," when even the foundations of the doctrine are still so far from 
secure. But the picture given in this address is so pleasant and vivid 
that it seems ungracious to complain that there are not more figures 
in it. There are visible figures, too — an interesting innovation — for 
the paper is illustrated by photographs of Charles Darwin, Erasmus 
Darwin, Cuvier, Edward Eorbes, Wyville Thomson, Huxley, Pasteur, 
Spencer, Haeckel, Wallace, Weismann, Lister, and Herdman. 

A Half-Century of Evolution. 

As the wonderful century draws near its end we shall be deluged with 
retrospects, and truly these arbitrary time-boundaries may have their 
use in stimulating a feeling for history. It is to be hoped, however, 
that the note of jubilation which has already been loudly sounded by 
some will be softened by criticism, and that more will follow Mr. 
Wallace in recording the century's failures alongside of its successes. 
In his address to the section of zoology on the occasion of the fiftieth 
anniversary of the American Association for the Advancement of 
Science (August 1898), Prof. Alpheus S. Packard seems to have 
sought the via media, but we are not sure that he has always kept to 

io NOTES AND COMMENTS [janttary 

it. The first part of the address is entitled " A Half-Century of Evolu- 
tion." He says that " a reasonable and generally accepted solution 
has been reached " of the problem " How did living beings originate ? " 
" the evolution doctrine is based on the inductive method," though 
" biology is not an exact science " ; " every department of intellectual 
work and thought has been rejuvenated and rehabilitated by the em- 
ployment of the modern scientific method," and so on. Yet after this 
optimism, as it seems to us, he goes on to give a luminous sketch of 
the present conflict of opinions in regard to the very fundamentals of 
evolution doctrine, and he sums up : " With all these theories before us, 
these currents and counter-criticisms in evolutional thought bearing us 
rapidly along, at times perhaps carrying us somewhat out of our depth, 
the conclusion of the whole matter is that in the present state of 
zoology it will be wise to suspend our judgment on many theoretical 
matters, to wait for more light and to confine our attention meanwhile 
to the observation and registration of facts, to careful experiments, and 
to repeated tests of mere theoretical assumptions." This may be very 
sound advice, but it is rather a cold douche after the warmth of con- 
gratulation in which the author elsewhere indulges. 

Prof. Packard seems to us to make a mistake in his historical 
summary, when he says " a third school or sect has arisen under the 
leadership of Weismann, who advocates what is in Its essence ap- 
parently a revival of the exploded preformation, encasement, or ' evolu- 
tion ' theory of Swammerdam, Bonnet, and Haller, as opposed to the 
epigenetic evolutionism of Harvey, Wolff, Baer, and the majority of 
modern embryologists." Our reading of the history would lead us 
rather to say that Weismann differs as thoroughly from Bonnet as 
Hertwig from Harvey. The modern epigenesis differs toto coelo from 
that of the ancients. Are Prof. Whitman's essays not read in 
America ? 

Is Telegony a Mare's Nest? 

For some years Professor Cossar Ewart has been making experiments 
which bear upon the vexed question of telegony, or the supposed 
influence of a previous impregnation upon subsequent offspring. As 
may be remembered, he started with the colt Eomulus, the offspring of 
a Pium pony mare (Mulatto) by a Burchell zebra stallion (Matopo). 
Romulus has markings quite different from those of his sire, and rather 
resembling the Somaliland zebra. In 1897, Mulatto had a grey colt 
foal to a grey Arab stallion, and this foal showed at first some subtle 
markings slightly suggestive of zebra-influence. More careful exam- 
ination of the skin after death showed that the hints of stripes were 
merely due to dispositions of the hair. In short, the experiment 
furnished no evidence in support of the hypothesis of telegony. In 
another case, a skewbald pony mare had, by the zebra, a hybrid which 
was fairly well marked, and by a bay Shetland pony a second foal 


which almost exactly resembled its dam. In other cases similar 
negative results were obtained, any remarkable peculiarities that oc- 
curred being interpretable rather as reversions provoked by hybridism, 
than as furnishing any evidence of telegony. 

In a paper on " Reversion in Birds and Mammals," read before the 
Royal Society of Edinburgh on December 5 th, of which no adequate 
report has yet reached us, Professor Ewart summed up the results of a 
long series of experiments in crossing. He showed that reversion does 
not invariably follow crossing ; thus the offspring of Galloway and 
Highland breeds of cattle might be indistinguishable from pure-bred 
Galloways, while a cross between a pure white fantail pigeon and a blue 
pigeon resulted in an intermediate form, with the colour of the fantail 
and the build of the pouter. On the other hand, he showed that 
crossing is often followed by reversion, as in the case of a cross between 
an Archangel and a White Fantail, which resulted in a bird exceedingly 
like a Blue Rock. But we wait impatiently for something better 
than a newspaper report of these experiments, which are as important 
as they are interesting. 

A Study in Hybridism. 

It is a far cry from horses to sea-urchins, but the phenomena of 
hybridism in the two sets of cases seem to be in some respects very 
similar. In his paper on " The Relations between the Hybrid and 
Parent Forms of Echinoid Larvae " {Phil. Trans. Series B, vol. cxc. 
(1898), pp. 465-529), Mr. H. M. Vernon shows that various species — 
Strongylocentrotus lividus, Sphacrcchinus granularis, and Echinus micro- 
tuberculatus — are not separated by any rigidly-fixed physiological 
barrier. In fact, there is a general capacity for hybrid-fertilisation. 
In one case (viz. Echinus ? —Strongylocentrotus (?) cross -fertilisation 
takes place with greater ease, and produces larvae of larger size than 
does direct fertilisation. 

In most cases the larvae are of the maternal type, but paternal and 
intermediate types also occurred. But the most interesting result is 
the evidence of a connection between the relative maturity of the 
germ-cells and the characteristics which find expression in the hybrid 
larvae. "The Strongylocentrotus" ^ — Sphaerechinus 6 hybrid is only 
formed at the time when the Strongylocentrotus ova have reached their 
minimum of maturity ; whilst in the case of the reciprocal hybrid it 
is shown that as the maturity of the Strongylocentrotus sperm increases, 
it is able to transmute first a portion and then the whole of the hybrid 
larva from the Sphacrcchinus to its own type. In other words, the 
characteristics of the hybrid offspring depend directly on the relative 
degrees of maturity of the sexual products." It seems as if we might, 
through such admirable researches as Mr. Vernon's, be able some day to 
invest with some reality the subtle conception of intra-germinal struggle. 


Variation in a Sea- Anemone. 

Mr. G. H. Parker has sent us a note on " The Mesenteries and 
Siphonoglyphs of Metridium marginatum" extracted from the Bulletin 
of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard (xxx. No. 5). 

A second title for this important little paper might have been " A 

The more we learn about the fixed or sedentary forms of animal 
life the more difficult does it become to separate the species by 
characters which can be relied upon as being tolerably constant. 
Many new species, new genera, and indeed some new families must 
inevitably be unmade again, when we know more about the limits 
of possible variations which may occur among the zoophytes. The 
results of Mr. Parker's observations on the single species of sea- 
anemone {Metridium marginatum) bring home to us more emphatically 
than any previously published papers the hazardous nature of the risk 
we run in proposing a new specific name for an anemone on the strength 
of the examination of a single specimen or indeed of half a dozen. 

The group Hexactinia to which Metridium belongs was until 
recently supposed to possess two of the ciliated grooves, termed 
siphonoglyphs; but in Metridium only 41 per cent were diglyphic 
while 59 per cent were monoglyphic. Again, the name Hexactinia 
implies a certain constancy in the number of the pairs of mesenteries, 
but in Metridium there may be any number from three to eleven pairs, 
and one indeed was found with as many as fourteen pairs. 

It is not necessary to follow Mr. Parker further into his statistics. 
It is an important contribution to the study of variations he has sent 
to us, and may have arrived in time to serve as a useful warning to 
those engaged in the systematic study of the sea-anemones. 

Sensitive Protoplasm in Plants. 

The streaming movement of the protoplasm in the internodal cells of 
Chara with which botanical students are familiar, is the subject of a 
recent paper by Dr. Georg Hormann, issued in book form by Mr. G. 
Fischer of Jena, under the title " Studien iiber die Protopiasmastromung 
bei den Characeen " (79 pp., with 12 figures; price 2 marks). Dr. 
Hormann has studied the arrangement of the currents in the various 
parts of the plant — leaf, root, and cortical cells— their relation to cell- 
division and their behaviour under various external stimuli — mechanical, 
thermal, electrical, and others. From its behaviour to electrical stimuli 
and comparison with the behaviour of muscle and nerve fibres, the 
author concludes that the stimulus-conducting substance in a cell of 
Nitella, and in a fibre of nerve or muscle, contains a common fundamental 
structural item. The nerve fibre substance is purely conductive ; that 
in the Nitella cell is associated with a streaming mechanism, that in 
the muscle fibre with a contractive mechanism. 


A New Species of Revolving Alga. 

In his studies on the Plankton of the Illinois river (Bull. Illinois Lab. 

Nat. Hist. v. 1898, pp. 273-293, 2 pis.), Br. C. A. Kofoid deals very 

fully with a new species of alga (Pleodorina illinoisensis) belonging to 

the Volvocineae. This form consists of an ellipsoidal coenobium, about 

1 inch in long diameter, containing normally thirty-two bifiagellate 

cells arranged in five rings around the periphery of the hyaline 

gelatinous matrix. In common with most if not all the genera of 

the Volvocineae, e.g. Pandorina, Eudorina, Volvox, one pole of the 

colony is practically always directed forward in locomotion. The cells 

at this anterior end, however, not only differ from those towards the 

posterior pole, in that, as in the genera just mentioned, they are 

provided with larger red pigment spots, but four of them, the so-called 

vegetative cells, are much smaller than the remaining twenty-eight 

gonidial cells. The species, therefore, is especially interesting on 

account of its well-developed structural and physiological polarity. It 

also confirms the opinion expressed by "W. E. Shaw, who founded the 

o-enus, that Pleodorina occupies an intermediate position between 

Eudorina and Volvox, although nearer the former. 

The Corundum of India. 

In these days of the manufacture of artificial rubies it is satisfactory 
to get reliable information upon the existence and mode of occurrence 
of the natural stone. 

The well-known "Manual of the Geology of India" being out of print, 
a new edition of the portion dealing with general geology was. issued 
in 1893. The portion descriptive of the economic minerals was not 
at that time re-edited, but is now to be issued in the form of a series 
of separate papers, each dealing with a single mineral. The first of 
these is a most elaborate and exhaustive memoir by Mr. T. H. Holland, 
Deputy Superintendent of the Geological Survey of India, entitled 
Corundum (Calcutta, 1898, sold at the office of the Geological Survey). 

This paper tell us all that is known about the geological occurrence 
and geographical distribution of Indian Corundum, and gives much 
information also about the uses to which it is applied. The most 
important section is that relating to the geological history of the 
mineral ; special attention is called to the fact that it is found 
associated both with basic and with acid rocks. The author is dis- 
posed to the view that in not a few instances it was an original 
constituent of the rock, just like spinels and other oxides, and not 
necessarily an alteration-product or a metamorphic mineral. In 
particular, a felspar rock in the Coimbatore District, Madras, con- 
tains unaltered corundum which shows no evidence of secondary 
origin. It is well known that corundum can be crystallised out from 
certain slags which contain an excess of alumina. 


Mr. Holland's memoir is a remarkably complete and thorough 
piece of work, and we hope that the Director of the Geological Survey 
of India will be able to issue a number of monographs worthy of 
association with this the first of the series. 

Abstracts of Papers before reading. 

It is a frequent complaint that the title of a paper to be read before 
a society, as issued in the circular convening the meeting, affords but 
little clue to the subject matter. This not infrequently keeps away 
many who, did they know the subject of the paper, would endeavour 
to attend and help forward a discussion. Some societies make it a 
rule to print the paper in advance, and circulate the full paper, or an 
abstract, to those likely to be interested in the subject, and these 
societies invariably secure a good discussion, at once useful to the 
author and to the society. We are glad to note that in the circular 
issued by the Geologists' Association of London for their December 
meeting, this course has been followed for the first time. The paper 
is entitled Contributions to the Geology of the Thames Valley, by A. M. 
Davies, and the abstract of contents of the paper, no doubt supplied by 
Mr. Davies, is as follows : — 

This is a stratigraphical paper dealing mainly with the beds within the 
Kimeridge Clay and the Gault in Bucks and Oxon. The most important new 
observations recorded are (i.) the Presence of Purbeck Beds N. of Haddenham 
and INT. of Towersey ; (ii.) the Non-existence of the Gault Outlier mapped N.E. 
of Haddenham ; (iii.) the Presence of Portlandian Beds between the Shotover 
Ironsands and Kimeridge Clay at Littleworth, near Wheatley. The Author 
will exhibit maps, sections and specimens, and Mr. J. H. Pledge will exhibit 
photographs in illustration of the paper. 

It is often quite impossible for an author to describe his paper in 
his title, though such a course is obviously to be desired, and we hope 
the Association will see its way to continue the abstracts, whenever 
such a course seems desirable to the Secretary. There are many other 
societies which might well follow suit. 

A Slight Misunderstanding. 

In a recently published volume on " Degeneracy " (Contemporary Science 
Series, 1898), of which we shall have more to say afterwards, Dr. 
E. S. Talbot says that "Weismaun has practically abandoned the 
essential basis of his position by admitting that maternal nutrition 
may play a part in determining variation. He now asserts that the 
origin of a variation is equally independent of selection and amphi- 
mixis, and is due to the constant occurrence of slight inequalities of 
nutrition in the germ-plasm. As acquired characters affecting the 
constitution of the parents are certain to affect the nutrition of the 
germ-plasm, it is therefore obvious, according to Weismann's admission, 


that acquired characters or their consequences will be inherited. This 
is an emphatic though concealed abandonment of the central position 
of Weismann." But surely this misunderstanding of Weismann's 
position is inexcusable, and to slump " acquired characters or their 
consequences " is quite illegitimate. The illustrious author of the 
" Germ-Plasm " has made it quite clear that there is a very great 
difference between admitting that the germ-plasm has no charmed 
life, insulated from somatic influences, and admitting the transmis- 
sibility of a particular acquired character, even in the faintest degree. 
The point is this : Does a somatic modification, induced by functional 
or environmental change, influence the germ-plasm in such a way that 
the modification, or even a tendency towards it, is transmitted to the 
offspring ? Far from abandoning his position in the " Germ-Plasm," 
Weismann made it stronger than ever. The. first condition of criticism 
is to understand what one criticises. 

Photography in National Museums. 

In connection with our note on this subject last month, it will be of 
interest to our readers to quote the following remarks from the Times 
of November 24th, in regard to the remarkable collection of facsimile 
Tudor proclamations now on exhibition at the British Museum : — 

These facsimiles have been beautifully executed at the photographic 
establishment attached to the University Press, Oxford, which would have been 
unnecessary if the Museum had possessed a photographic department of its own. 
Great as is the historical interest of the collection, even this is second to the 
importance of its exhibition as an object-lesson of the value of photography to 
great libraries and repertories of archives. There is nothing, from the priceless 
books and MSS. down to parish registers, which . cannot by photography be re- 
produced and ensured against destruction and decay. With an efficient inter- 
national system every country might possess every document illustrative of its 
history or its national life in the past. To this end, however, it is essential 
that the photographic atelier should be national, and connected with some 
public institution, for then, and then only, can the photographer be a salaried 
officer, and expense thus be reduced to a minimum. The trifling public outlay 
would be nearly, if not altogether, covered by public patronage. It is a matter 
for much congratulation that the first important step to demonstrate the utility 
and practicability of so great an object should have been made by the British 

These remarks apply equally well to " types " or other subjects in 
Natural History. 

Physiology of Reproduction. 

The experimental examination of the physiology of reproduction in 
the lower members of the cryptogamic series is a study of compara- 
tively recent date, opening a wide field of important investigation. 
Most of the definite knowledge we as yet possess of this complex 
and difficult subject we owe to the labours of Professor Klebs, who, 

1 6 NOTES AND COMMENTS [january 

continuing his well - known researches on the conditions which 
determine the reproductive processes in thallophytes, has recently 
published (Jahrb. f. wiss. Botanik, Bd. xxxii.) a paper describing 
the effect of environment on the formation of sporangia and 
zygotes respectively in Sporodinia, one of the Mucorineae. This 
mould is peculiar, in that both reproductive organs arise from 
similar primordia, and, according to Professor Klebs, the determining 
factor, other conditions being equal, is to be found in the amount of 
transpiration taking place from the surface of the plant, and this in 
its turn depends naturally on the amount of moisture present in the 
surrounding air. So rigidly is this the case that in less than twenty- 
four hours he was able to determine at will whether sporangia or zygotes 
should be formed, simply by opening or closing the flasks in which the 
fungus was cultivated on discs of carrot, or on plumjuice-agar, both of 
which are soils suitable for its growth, though its natural habitat is 
the decaying cap of the larger toadstools. So long as the relative 
moisture within the culture chamber does not exceed 65 per cent, 
sporangia alone are formed, while if it rises above 70 per cent zygotes 
appear in increasing numbers till absolute saturation is reached. The 
most favourable conditions for the formation of zygotes are found 
in the stagnant layer of saturated air which always hangs over the 
plants in a still atmosphere, and in which any evaporation taking 
place from the surface of the hypha must be due solely to the 
temperature of the living substance being slightly higher than that of 
the surrounding medium. A current of air, even when nearly saturated 
with moisture, disturbs this layer, and thus tends to promote the 
formation of sporangia quite apart from any consideration of an im- 
proved oxygen supply, which indeed appears to exert but little influence. 

The formation of zygotes seems to be unaffected by changes of 
temperature between a minimum of 6° and a maximum of 26° C, so 
long as the relative moisture remains constant, but above the higher 
limit the increasing transpiration induces sporangial development at 
the expense of zygote formation. 

The nutrition of the fungus also influences the formation of 
reproductive organs. Thus starvation promotes the development of 
sporangia, not as might be expected of zygotes, and the same result 
follows the employment of such purely nitrogenous food materials as 
peptone, albumin, etc. On the other hand, certain carbohydrates 
such as cane-sugar, maltose, glycerine, dextrine, etc., favour the 
production of zygotes, while other substances belonging to the same 
series, like arabinose, lactose, inuline, etc., promote the formation 
of sporangia alone. The addition of peptone to the above-mentioned 
carbohydrates does not in most cases influence the result. The acid 
salts of certain organic acids, especially acid malate of ammonia, tend to 
the production of zygotes, while the neutral salts of the same acids 
promote only vegetative growth. 


Funafuti : The Study of a Coral Atoll. 1 

By W. J. Sollas, M.A., LL.D., D.Sc, F.E.S., Professor of Geology and 
Palaeontology in the University of Oxford. 

By far the largest portion of the untrodden surface of our planet is 
formed by the floor of the Pacific Ocean. Submerged at an average 
depth of over 1000 fathoms, it lies out of reach of the geologist's 
hammer for all time, and for the present at least is inaccessible to the 
diamond drill. 2 The geology of an almost entire hemisphere is thus 
the secret of the Pacific. 

" It is the nature of a God," Bacon quaintly remarks, " to conceal 
a thing, it is the glory of a man to find it out," and certainly there 
would seem to be few secrets in Nature to which a clue has not some- 
where been left for those who have virtue to discover it. 

The mountainous margins of the ocean, still young and actively 
moving, may doubtless furnish us with many precious hints, but it is 
to the multitudinous islands, which in serried rows like the tops of 
submerged mountain-chains extend across it, that we must turn in 
search of the true guiding thread. 

Some of these islands, like New Zealand and New Caledonia, are in 
many important respects similar to our own, and seem to be the sur- 
viving fragments of a lost continent, which has fallen into ruins and 
sunk beneath the waves. Others, such as the Sandwich Isles and Fiji, 
are also of a kind long since familiar to us, clusters of volcanic cones 
which, like Stromboli and Vulcano of the Mediterranean, rise from the 
depths of the sea. 

In addition to these, however, there exists a third and strange 
kind of islands, restricted to the torrid zone, and known to the daring 
mariners of the Elizabethan period as " low " islands, a name well 
deserved, since few of them attain a greater elevation than many of the 

1 Being the Friday evening discourse delivered before the British Association at Bristol, 

2 Professors John Joly and Edgeworth David think it may be possible by suitable 
machinery to bore a hole in the floor of the deep sea. 

2 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 83. I J 


pebble beaches which fringe our own coasts : few indeed so great, the 
loftiest summits of most not exceeding the insignificant height of 10 
feet. Owing to this fact they are scarcely visible till a ship is close 
upon them, and the first glimpse of a low island presents itself as a 
thin dark-green band, which separates the deep azure of the sky from 
the still deeper blue of the sea : with nearer approach a cream-coloured 
streak inserts itself below the green and is instantly followed by a line 
of dazzling snowy white, which is soon recognised as the fringe of surf 
which marks the boundary of the sea. Sailing nearer, the streak of 
cream-colour becomes the island beach, and the zone of green resolves 
itself into a mass of luxuriant vegetation, over which the feathery 
crowns of the graceful cocoa-nut palms, towering to a height of 80 
feet, wave indolently in the sea-breeze. 

As the details of this gracious scene, rising like an apparition from 
the deep, unfold before the eyes, one seems to gaze on some island of 
enchantment, and with the music of the surf thundering in one's ears 
one thinks of the Tritons sounding the loud conch, and half expects to 
" see old Proteus rising from the lea ! " 

If it be with surprise that we first make the acquaintance of these 
islands the feeling is in no degree abated with closer familiarity ; from 
beginning to end their whole story is a chapter of surprises. 

Mariners soon learned to dread the surf-beaten shores, for they 
could find no anchorage within a safe distance of the breakers, the sides 
of the island descending precipitously to great depths within a few 
hundred yards of the coast ; and within this distance a reef of rough 
and rugged rocks forms the shelving floor of the sea. A barque once 
driven on to this heels over, with its deck facing the pitiless waves, 
and is swept clean from stem to stern. 

Bristling with dangers on the outside, the island conceals within 
itself a spacious inner sea or lagoon, into which, through dangerous 
passages, a ship may make its way, and once there securely ride out 
the most destructive storm. The island thus differs from most others 
in being hollow in its midst : a mere rocky rim to a sea-lake, which 
may be as much as GO or even 100 miles across, and 60 fathoms 
deep, though 20 fathoms is more usual. From this feature the 
islands are known, not only as " low " islands, but as " lagoon " 
islands. The shores of the lagoon are bordered by a smooth, gently 
sloping beach of flesh-coloured sand, over which the wavelets fall 
faintly : and palms and laurel-like shrubs growing down to the 
water's edge are reflected in its crystal margin. 

When the voyager first set foot on this strange new land it was a 
fresh surprise to him to find it peopled. The inhabitants, usually 
graceful and prepossessing in appearance and amiable in manners, 
came timidly forth to welcome him, speaking a language full of soft 
vowel sounds, which has been aptly styled the Italian of the Pacific. 
In some cases, particularly when the natives were not red men but 


black, they showed less favour to strangers, and the islands sometimes 
became the theatre of bloody strife. 

Besides man, whose presence is an additional problem of the 
islands, no other mammals are indigenous, their place being taken by 
various land crabs and spiders of many kinds. 

An examination of the rocks of a low island reveals another 
singular feature : save for a few fragments of pumice, brought from 
distant volcanoes by sea-currents and cast by the waves upon the 
strand, they present us with but one kind of material, carbonate of 
lime, which has been extracted from solution in the sea, and built up 
into a diversity of solid forms by the agency of organisms, — plants and 
animals, of which the most conspicuous are corals. Thus but one 
kind of rock enters into the constitution of the island, — and this is 
limestone : of granite, slate, sandstone, clay, such as we are familiar 
with at home, there is none : all is limestone, whatever you see ! 

The interest of this fact is enhanced by another. Repeated investi- 
gation has proved that the island is not merely a residuum, a mortuary 
of calcareous organisms, but that it is still alive and in active growth. 
A profusion of gaily tinted corals forms reefs within the lagoon, and 
the whole of the shelving platform, which descends from the surf to 
a distance of 20 or 30 fathoms below the sea, is alive with them: 
this platform is indeed the true growing surface of the island. 

Corals, by reason of their considerable size and brilliant colours, 
first attract the attention of the observer, and hence, although numerous 
other kinds of creatures collaborate with the corals in the construction 
of the reef, these islands are known not only as " low " islands and 
" lagoon " islands, but also as " coral " islands, or more particularly as 
" coral atolls." 

The remarkable discovery that coral atolls consist of the re- 
mains of animals and plants of precisely the same kinds as those 
which are at present adding to its substance, excited general interest, 
and led to many fantastic speculations, which need not now be re- 
called. The state of opinion at 
the beginning of this century 
may best be learned from the 
works of the poet - naturalist, 
Chamisso, who may probably 
be more widely known as the 
author of Peter Schlemihl's wun- 
derbare Geschichte (The Story of 
the Man who sold his Shadow) than as an investigator of coral reefs. 
In a description, which even in the light of the most recent research 
must still be pronounced excellent, Chamisso (Fig. 1) speaks of atolls as 
table-mountains which rise steeply from great depths. The summit of 
the table-mountain is always under water, and is covered by the living 
reef, which surrounds its margin as a broad platform, and rises to the 


Fig. 1. 


level of low tides. Sandbanks resting on this form the dry land. 
Since, he observes, every particle of the atoll which lies within the 
reach of observation consists of coral, it is only just to conclude that 
the whole structure, including the table-mountain, is formed of the 
same material. Not perhaps a strictly logical conclusion, yet, as 
events have proved, in the main correct. 

Chamisso's opinion was not destined to remain long unchallenged, 
for two famous French naturalists — Quoy and Gaimard — asserted, as 
the result of their observations, that the coral-rock of an atoll is only 
skin-deep, i.e. it forms, according to them, a mere superficial crust, not 
more than about 2 5 feet in thickness ; the rest — Chamisso's " table- 
mountain " — being, on this view, of volcanic, or at all events of inor- 
ganic, origin. 

Tew of the arguments by which it was attempted to sustain this 
erroneous conclusion strike one as being very satisfactory, but they include 
one highly important observation, viz. that reef-building corals do not 
live at greater depths than 25 feet below the level of low tides. Sub- 
sequent inquiry, while fully confirming the existence of a limit, has at 
the same time extended it down to a depth of as many as 25, or 
perhaps even 40, fathoms. Yet, even with this modification, the un- 
expected discovery of Quoy and Gaimard seems to stand in flagrant 
contradiction to the views of Chamisso. If corals cannot grow below 
a depth of 25 fathoms, how could they possibly have built up islands 
of over 100 fathoms in thickness ? 

The answer to this question, as is well known, was given by 
Charles Darwin. If we admit the truth of both the apparently con- 
flicting statements, it is obvious that the corals at the base of a reef 
100 fathoms in thickness must have been situated within the limit of 
25 fathoms at the time they were alive. But in order to bring them 
within this limit it is only necessary to suppose that the foundation 
on which they grew originally stood 75 fathoms nearer the sea-level 
than it does now ; or, in other words, that since the lower layers of the 
reef were alive and flourishing, the ground which supported them has 
sunk 75 fathoms deeper in the sea. No fact is better established than 
the rise and fall of islands situated in mid-ocean, and thus there is 
nothing antecedently improbable in this supposition. But once grant 
it and Darwin's explanation of atolls naturally follows. Thus let a 
be an island with its summit rising 100 fathoms above the sea; let 
its shores become peopled with corals, which extend seawards down 
to the limit of 25 fathoms, beyond which, as we admit, they cannot 
proceed : a reef is thus started, which will continue to grow, rising 
upwards till it reaches the level of low tides : when this is attained 
upward growth will cease, and the reef will begin to pass into decay, 
from the shore-edge outwards. So long as the island remains stationary, 
neither rising nor falling with respect to the sea-level, this is practically 
all that will happen, and the final result is a reef not much exceeding 




r rin ciMc Ree» 



25 fathoms in thickness (Fig. 2, first stage). But let us next suppose 
that the island begins slowly to sink into the sea, carrying the reef with 
it ; the upward limit to the 
growth of the corals will be 
displaced; they will commence 
to flourish afresh, and the reef 
will continue to extend up- 
wards till the level of the low 
tides is once more encountered, 
and growth again arrested. 
This process of submergence 
and upward growth may of 
course be repeated indefinitely, 
and by the time the island has 
descended 50 fathoms below 
its original position, the reef will have acquired a corresponding 
thickness. In such a case the unfavourable conditions to coral growth 

which prevail on the inner side 

Fig. 2.— First Stage. 

Encircling reef 

Fig. 2. — Second Stage. 

of the reef, together with the re- 
treating slope of the flanks of the 
island, will have led to the forma- 
tion of a channel of sea -water 
between the reef and the shore 
(Fig. 2, second stage). Finally, 
let the submergence of the island 
continue till it is completely 
swallowed up by the sea, not a 
vestige of its summit remaining 
to mark its place ; the upward 
growth of the corals, constantly proceeding, will bring them once more 
to the level of low tides, and the result will be the formation of a 
ring-shaped reef surrounding a 

•I / -1 -1 ATOLL 

central lagoon, or, m other words, 
of an atoll (Fig. 2, third stage). 

If this hypothetical scheme 
of the progress of events corre- 
spond to the facts, we may expect 
to find its various stages still 
represented among the numerous 
islands of the Pacific ; and this, 
as Darwin endeavoured to show, 
is clearly the case. The first 
stage, in which the reef is no 

more than 25 fathoms thick, and forms a selvage accurately following 
the margin of the land, is represented by that numerous class known 
as " fringing " reefs. The second, in which a comparatively thick reef 

Fig. 2.— Third Stage. 





surrounds an island with an intervening saltwater channel, is illustrated 
by another class, known as " encircling " or " barrier " reefs. In these, 
as we might expect, the form of the reef is only remotely related to 
the contour of the enclosed island, the valleys of which present that 
fiord-like character so suggestive of sunken land. The last stage is 
that of the atoll itself. 

The excellence of Darwin's theory lies in this, that it explains all 
the essential features of an atoll on one simple assumption. It is 
inconsistent with no known fact, and as additional discoveries have 
been made it has not required to be supplemented by fresh hypotheses. 
It is not like a Gothic structure, supported by flying buttresses and 
other tours de force, but rather resembles some noble Italian tower, 
which rises from its base, straight, simple, and self-sufficing. It was no 
sooner given to the world than it commanded almost universal assent. 

Nevertheless it has never been without a rival : even before 
Darwin published his celebrated work, Ainsworth 1 had suggested a 
different explanation. He rightly pointed out that Quoy and Gaimard 
had not established a limit for all reef-building organisms, and that 

although certain corals, such 
as they had observed, might 
be restricted to shallow 
waters, there might yet be 
others capable of flourishing 
at greater depths. If so, 
these deep-water organisms 
might be engaged in laying 
the foundations of an atoll on which the shallower-water forms might 
erect the superstructure (Fig. 3). This suggestion seems to have fallen 
still-born, but the notion of " laying the foundation " of an atoll was 
not destined to perish : it has been revived of late years by Sir 
John Murray, who, guided by his observations made when on board 
the " Challenger," was led to suppose that the submerged summits of 
deeply-sunken islands 
might be raised to within 
the limit of 25 fathoms, 
not by the upward growth 
of corals but by the in- » 
cessant downward rain of 
minute organisms from the 
surface of the sea. The 

same agencies which were supposed to be spreading out a layer of chalky 
mud or ooze over the abyssal floor of the ocean were also imagined as 
engaged in piling a Pelion of mud on every submarine Ossa (Fig. 4). 

1 G. W. Ainsworth, "Analysis of a Voyage to the Pacific and Behring's Straits, to co- 
operate with the Polar Expedition, performed in H.M. Ship Blossom, under command of 
Capt. F. W. Beechey, R.N., in the years 1825-28," Gcog. Jour. vol. i. 1831. 

Fig. 3. 

S' W John Mu pray 


The publication of Sir John Murray's views was followed by a 
long controversy, in which Darwin's theory was subjected to a most 
searching criticism. An impartial summary of the arguments arrayed 
on both sides of the question is given by Professor Bonney, in the last 
edition of Darwin's " Coral Reefs," and the general subject is treated in 
the fullest manner by Langenbeck, in a work entitled " Die Theorieen 
ueber die Entstehung der Koralleninseln und Korallenriffe " (Leipzig, 

So far as the opposition to Darwin's views has come to count 
among its adherents a number of distinguished thinkers, it can only 
be regarded as having achieved a certain measure of success : a result 
not, to my thinking, to be wholly accounted for by the nature of the 
arguments employed ; possibly in this as in similar cases, the ostensible 
objections are mere weapons of combat, while the real power has lain 
in the strong and subtle influence exercised by some general current 
of thought. Such a current is indicated in the tendency to a belief 
in what is spoken of as the Permanence of Continental Areas and 
Oceanic Basins. 

According to Darwin, every atoll marks the site of a vanished 
island, but the atolls of the Pacific are so numerous that if one 
imagines all the islands they represent as summoned back from the 
" vasty deep " and restored to their original position above the sea, 
they will constitute a very considerable tract of land, and this situated 
in the very middle of the Pacific Ocean. Such a prospect could not 
fail to be unpleasing to those who believed in the immutability of the 

Of late years, however, this doctrine of "permanence" has. begun 
to look a little threadbare. In a theoretical restoration of the dis- 
tribution of land and sea during the Jurassic times, Neumayr has 
treated it with scant consideration, since he represents the North and 
South Atlantic, as well as the Indian Ocean, as then to a great extent 
occupied by land, and it is now very generally supposed that this land 
did not disappear to make way for existing seas till a comparatively 
late period in the history of the earth. Bold as Neumayr showed him- 
self in the treatment of these oceans, he had not the temerity to take 
liberties with the Pacific. This he and geologists in general are disposed 
to regard as having maintained its existing features from a very early 
period : of this ocean, and of it alone would they exclaim, " Such as 
Creation's dawn beheld, thou rollest now." 

Darwin's theory, as we have seen, does not hesitate to recall to 
existence land in the middle of even this ocean ; this is its unforgiv- 
able offence — it lays sacrilegious hands on the Pacific, and thus attacks 
the doctrine of " permanence " in its stronghold. 

While the recent controversy on Darwin's theory was at its 
fiercest, and both sides seemed equally persuaded that the truth was 
theirs and must prevail, it occurred to me that a simple solution 





Mur Ray 


Coral. Fragments 

Cma.l«^ Ooze. 

might be obtained by sinking a bore-hole through some well-character- 
ised atoll, and thus obtaining specimens of the material of which it is 
composed, clown to a depth considerably greater than that at which 
corals are supposed to build. How would this illustrate the question ? 
Allow me to employ a homely illustration : buyers of cheese are not, 
I presume, naturally more suspicious than other persons engaged in 
trade, but they are unwilling to trust too much to mere outward 
appearance ; they are not inclined to adopt the argument which com- 
mended itself to Chamisso in a parallel case, that because there is good 
cheese on the surface it must be good cheese all through : consequently 
by means of a boring instrument, called a scoop, they make a hole 
through the cheese and bring out a core or cylindrical rod, in which 
the several strata of the material, if there be more than one, are dis- 
played in their true thickness and natural position. The atoll is our 

cheese, which we propose to sample 
with a complicated kind of scoop 
called a diamond drill. This should 
provide us with a core in which the 
various layers of the coral reef should 
be faithfully represented. Should 
Darwin's theory prove correct, the 
core will contain the remains of reef- 
building corals as far down as the 
reef extends ; if, on the other hand, 
Sir John Murray's explanation make 
a nearer approach to the truth, layers 
of chalky ooze will be present at 
depths greater than that of the limit 
of coral growth (Fig. 5). 
No one who has any notion of the extraordinary thoroughness with 
which Darwin attacked this as every other problem that he investigated, 
will be at all surprised to learn that the same solution had already 
occurred to him, and in a letter to A. Agassiz (May 5, 1881) he 
sighs for " some doubly rich millionaire, who would take it into his 
head to have, borings made in some of the Pacific and Indian atolls, 
and bring home cores for slicing from a depth of 500 or 600 feet." 
As the wished-for millionaire did not appear to be forthcoming, it ap- 
peared to me that the boring might be achieved in another way, by a 
method very familiar to this Association, I allude of course to a "Com- 
mittee." On approaching Professor Bonney with a suggestion to this 
effect he warmly entertained the proposal, and in 1891 a strong Com- 
mittee, including the most distinguished supporters and opponents of 
Darwin's theory, was formed, having for its object the investigation of 
an atoll by boring and other means. 

Through the kind offices of Professor Stuart of Sydney we obtained 
from the Government of New South Wales the offer of the free loan of 

Fig. 5. 


a diamond drill. Our next step was to select an island for investiga- 
tion. This was rendered an easy task through the invaluable assistance 
afforded by Admiral Wharton, whose extensive knowledge of coral- 
reefs renders him the most formidable of Darwin's opponents. At his 
suggestion our choice fell on Funafuti, one of the Ellice or Lagoon 
Islands, situated in the middle of the Pacific (lat. 8^° S.), seven days' 
sail northwards of Fiji. No better selection could possibly have been 
made. Not only is Funafuti an atoll of unexceptional character itself, 
but it belongs to a family of atolls all of equally unexceptional 
character ; and these again to a system which includes the Gilbert and 
Marshall Islands, all of them excellent atolls. So far as these are all 
distinguished by the same characters, whatever may be found true of 
Funafuti will apply to all the rest. 

The labours of the Committee of the British Association were then 
taken over by a Committee of the Royal Society, at whose request the 
Admiralty generously assigned to our assistance the " Penguin," one of 
H.M. gunboats, commanded by Captain Field, and stationed in the 
Pacific for exploring purposes. The Royal Society furnished funds to 
defray expenses, and the direction of the expedition was placed in my 
hands : two volunteers, Mr. Gardiner of Cambridge and Mr. Hedley 
of Sydney, were with my permission to accompany me. 

We joined the " Penguin " and left Sydney on 1st May 1896, taking 
with us a boring party which had been selected for the work by Mr. 
Slee, the Government Inspector of Mines and Drills. Its foreman, 
Ayles, had acquired great reputation in the colony by his success 
in conducting boring operations of exceptional difficulty. On 21st 
May, after three weeks' voyage, we heard the welcome cry " Land 
ho ! " and Funafuti was seen on the horizon. The ship was steered 
for the southern entrance ; this was safely made, and we steamed into 
the noble lagoon. Flying-fish spurted from under our bows, and zig- 
zagged in their darting flight around us ; here and there in the midst 
of the blue waters green and purple shallows marked the site of 
growing coral patches. On the starboard side lay the beautiful island 
of Funafuti proper, its pale sands ablaze in the light of the tropical 
sun, its groves of palms cool with a refreshing green. A boat put off 
from the beach manned by a crew of copper-coloured natives, their 
black hair crowned with wreatlis of Gardenia and Hibiscus flowers. 
They were soon swarming over our sides, bringing with them the 
solitary white trader of the island, who safely piloted us to anchor 
within a mile of the shore. Captain Field and a party immediately 
landed, and we went at once to pay our respects to the king, who, 
notwithstanding the narrow limits of his realm and the smallness 
of his nation, which numbers only some 240 souls, we found to 
be every inch a king. His Majesty received us with gracious dignity, 
led us into his palace, one of the few stone huts on the island, and 
seated us by his side on the dais, which consisted of packing-cases. 


The chief men sat round the walls on the floor, and smiling damsels, 
with large black eyes, ivory white teeth, and long black tresses floating 
loose, shyly presented us with freshly opened cocoa-nuts to drink, a 
civility which as inevitably attends a call in Funafuti as the afternoon 
cup of tea at home. "We told our errand, and received permission to 
choose a site for boring operations. We then requested that a house 
should be built for us, and were promised that this should be done for 
the modest sum of £6. The reception ended, we proceeded to choose 
a site for the boring and for landing gear, and marked out the plan of 
our house; it was to measure 15 by 20 feet. We were anxious 
to have the building of this put in hand at once, and were assured 
that it should be ready for us by the afternoon of the next day. The 
East is supposed to be more fertile in promise than performance, and 
our expectation was that we should see this house when we did see it. 
Judge, therefore, of our surprise when on passing the same spot the day 
after we found a substantial structure already standing there. It had 
grown up like Aladdin's palace in a single night ! The whole popula- 
tion had been employed on the work ; the men had cut down trees and 
shaped them into poles, sunk these in the ground, and bound them 
together into a solid framework ; the children had been set to gather 
palm leaves from the forest, and the women had woven these into 
mats, which were used to form both the walls and thatch of our 
dwelling. The result was an excellent house which served all our 
needs, protecting us from sun and storm during our residence of nearly 
three months. Not a nail was driven in its construction, all the joints 
being firmly made with cocoa-nut cord. 

After contemplating the work with great satisfaction I left for a 
stroll, and returning an hour after was aghast to find our new house 
surrounded with smoke and flames ! To my great relief it turned out 
that the conflagration proceeded from the surrounding bush, which the 
thoughtful natives had purposely set alight to prevent its taking fire 
by accident. 

The work of landing gear and erecting machinery was set about 
vigorously; the crew of the Penguin toiled all day heroically in the burn- 
ing sun, refreshing themselves at sunset in swimming matches with the 
natives ; progress was so rapid that by 3rd June, not quite a fortnight 
after landing, the boring party were already at work (Fig. 6). So far all 
our plans had been carried out with expedition and success, and since 
" things done well and with a care " are said to " exempt themselves 
from fear," we may now safely leave our miners industriously boring 
while we take a walk across the island. Standing on the shore of the 
lagoon near the site of our boring, it is just possible to catch a glimpse 
of the palms on the opposite side, some ten miles away. The beach 
slopes so gently, that although the tide falls only about five feet 
it leaves a wide expanse of sand uncovered ; this is a perfect warren 
of shore crabs (Calajqxz), which scurry along like blown thistle-down 


and vanish into holes with mysterious suddenness. It is at night that 
these are most active, when they dig deep burrows in the sand, casting 
up conical hillocks at the entrance nearly a foot high, which give the 
beach the appearance of a miniature encampment. The sand is the 
famous " coral " sand ; but on picking up a handful for nearer inspec- 
tion we are surprised to find that it contains scarcely any coral ; and 
so far from consisting of detrital material, it is almost entirely com- 
posed of the shells of Foraminifera, two species predominating, Tin- 
oporus baculatus and Orbitolites complanata. From specimens collected 
on other atolls by the late Professor Moseley, and preserved in the 
University Museum at Oxford, it would appear that the sand at Funafuti 

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Fig. 6. — The Site of the First Boring, with Derrick and Machinery. 

is by no means singular in this respect, and the term " coral " sand is 
only another instance of the " lucus a non." 

The lagoon beach ends in a tiny cliff about a foot in height, 1 to 
the very edge of which sparse turf and vegetation of a larger growth 
extends ; the land to which this cliff is boundary consists chiefly 
of small fragments of coral and shells of Foraminifera ; it rises a little 
so as to attain a maximum height of 3 or 4 feet above high-water 
mark. In breadth it varies considerably, and where broadest the 
native village stands, with the church, large enough to contain the whole 
population, all church-goers, the school, mission-house, and palace. 
A row of graves, made tomb-like with slabs of coral, runs down the 
middle of the main street. The whole of this sandy flat is covered 

1 This applies to that part of the islet on which our house was built : in some places 
more considerable cliffs are met with, e.g. on one of the northern islets of Funafuti called 
Amatupu, where a conglomerate of coral pebbles forms steep faces some six feet or more in 




with rich forest growth (Fig. 7), cocoa-nut palms in all stages, from the 
young plant just sprouting from the shell to the ancient of the groves, 
80 feet in height, hearing heavy clusters of ripe fruit beneath its 
crown of feathery fronds ; pandanus, with its strange adventitious roots 
and truculent sword-shaped leaves, broken in the middle ; the laurel- 
like Nono (Morinda citrifolia) ; and the "Nya" tree (Pcmphis), with its 
heavy stem of hard red wood, and delicate foliage. Ferns abound, and 
some brightly coloured flowering plants ; an Abutilon, which puts forth 
fresh blossoms day by day ; and a handsome bean, which trails through 
the forest, bearing large heart-shaped leaves and heavy racemes of lilac 

The great robber-crab (Birgus), which feeds on cocoa-nuts and 

Fig. 7. — Forest scene in Funafuti. 

pandanus fruit, is at home here, and may be seen climbing the cocoa- 
palms by night. Other land crabs scramble through the fallen palm 
leaves which thickly strew the ground. Many of these are of 
the hermit kind, and one of them has a curious habit of croaking like 
a frog when captured. But no part of the island is free from land 
crabs ; like rats and mice they are the universal scavengers ; they 
undermined our house, attacked our tinned provisions, and one could 
not sit down to eat a cocoa-nut without some of these weird creatures 
gathering round to pick up the fallen crumbs. 

As we continue our passage across the sand, the scene rapidly, even 
abruptly, changes its aspect ; the place of the forest so rich and varied 
is taken by a grotesque growth of " Xya " trees, whose stubborn 
contorted trunks, strangely at variance with their dainty foliage, bar 
the way ; struggling through these, one enters upon a savage plain, 
" horrid " with rugged fragments of blackened coral, and cumbered here 




and there with huge boulders of coral rock some tons in weight. 1 At 
low water this desolate region is dry and burns in the sun, but as the 
tide rises sea- water oozes up through holes in the ground and covers 
it with shallow pools. Few animals live in this desert ; spiders, 
that infest the " Nya " trees, and mosquitoes, that lie greedily in wait 
by day as well as night, are the chief that I bear in mind. Pro- 
ceeding lengthwise along this plain, which lies in the middle of the 
island, it broadens out and passes into a muddy swamp, planted by 
the natives with taro, a delicious substitute for potatoes, and bananas, 
which one still reflects upon with pleasure ; their fruit was our 

Fig. 8. — Hdiopora in the foreground, Forties beyond the Mangrove Swamp, Funafuti. 

chief luxury, and we willingly paid for it at the somewhat exorbitant 
price of four fathoms of calico a bunch. 

Farther on beyond the plantation, the depression becomes still 
wider, forming an extensive flat, partly margined by mangrove trees 
and Hibiscus; this was known to us as the mangrove swamp (Fig. 8). 
It is an interesting corner of the-island. The floor represents the upper 
surface of a deal coral reef, composed partly of great masses of Porites ; 
their flattened summits, standing some 8 or 10 inches above the floor, 
give them the appearance of a row of stepping-stones, and mark what 
was the level of low tide at the time the reef was living. 2 Eadiating 
from these blocks as from a nucleus are vertical plates of the " blue 

1 One of these measured 6 feet by 5 feet by 4 feet. 

2 The last episode in the history of the island appears to have been a slight elevation of 
some four or five feet : at least I was led to this conclusion from evidence furnished by the 
"dead reef" of the mangrove swamp, by the "sea-stacks" or pinnacles of coral-rag of the 
tidal platform, and by the steep cliffs which in some of the islets border the lagoon. 

So W. J. SOLLAS [januauy 

coral " (Heliopora coerulea) which extend outwards, branching as they 
go, for a distance of 3 yards or more. Overlapping the reef lies a layer 
of consolidated coral breccia ; it has suffered much from erosion by the 
sea, and bounds the inner side of the depression in cliffs 3 or 4 feet in 
height. A sheet of clear green water covers the swamp at high tide, 
converting it into a shallow lake, which as the tide falls empties itself 
through deep holes in the floor into subterranean passages, which freely 
communicate with the outer sea. The northern end of this depression 
is closed by coral breccia, and overgrown with mangroves ; but farther 
on it recommences and extends through the remainder of the island, 
almost as far as its northernmost extremity, forming a discontinuous 

Fig. 9. — A Raised Pinnacle of Coral. 

narrow trough bordered by steep cliffs. This trough, aud the 
depression to which it belongs, owes its origin in some degree to 
solution by sea-water. 

We have deviated from our walk across the island to follow the 
course of its central depression, let us now return and resume our 
traverse. The blackened fragments of coral, resembling nothing so 
much as the clinkers of lava which cumber the slopes of Etna, continue 
seawards, and are loosely piled to form a gently rising ascent ; so 
loosely piled that they often topple over at a touch, and afford very 
uncertain or even dangerous foothold. 

Walking circumspectly, therefore, up the slope we soon reach the 
summit of a long ridge, and find ourselves looking towards the Andes, 
some thousands of miles away over the broad waters of the Pacific 
Ocean. We stand on the top of the " storm-beach," the loftiest region 
of our island, at the imposing altitude of 1 or even 1 5 feet, according 


to the state of the tide. On the seaward face the storm-beach descends 
somewhat rapidly, and near its foot a sheet of hard consolidated coral- 
rag emerges from under it, to form a gently sloping platform, over which 
the tide ebbs and flows. In places this tidal platform rises in low cliffs, 
ridges, and pinnacles 1 of fantastic shape (Fig. 9), but for the most part 
it presents itself as a sheet of limestone, smoothed and polished by the 
wearing action of the waves. For about fifty yards from its seaward 
edge it is hollowed into a broad shallow depression (Fig. 10), not deep 
enough to be called a channel, and finally swells into a narrow rounded 
rim formed by the growtli of a pink-coloured calcareous seaweed known 
as Mclobesia. Beyond this rim, which projects above the sea at low 

Fig. 10. — Funafuti on the Ocean Side. 

tide, lies the growing surface of the reef, which is constantly submerged, 
so that under no circumstances are the corals which thickly cover it at 
any time exposed to the air. 

Deep chasms gash the edge of the tidal platform, the continuation 
inland of the lanes of clear sea which wander through the growing 
reef; in these chasms a few corals may generally be found, their 
polypes sometimes brilliantly coloured and in full expansion. 

The calcareous alga, previously alluded to as Mclobesia, forms the 
lips of these chasms, and by its luxuriant growth may more or less 
completely roof them over, generally leaving one or more apertures, 
which act as blow-holes. 

The ocean side of the reef is one of the pleasantest parts of the 
island : a cool breeze almost always blows there ; and, under the 
welcome shelter of the palms and pandanus which crowd the summit 
of the storm-beach, one may watch the beautiful and impressive spectacle 

1 See note 1, p. 29. 

3 2 



below (Fig. 11): the ocean, of a deep majolica blue, rolls inwards in 
majestic waves, which suddenly grow gigantic as they approach the shore, 
towering in a wall of water above the reef ; and then spring with a 
furious roar into a confusion of white foam, which seethes about the 
madder-tinted margin of Mdobcsia, rushes through the chasms of the 
tidal platform, and often spouts up through the blow-holes with sudden 
and explosive violence, like a kind of marine geysers. It is only on 
calm clays that the extreme margin of the reef can be approached with 
safety. Such is the violence of the breakers that the tidal platform 
presents the appearance of an almost lifeless desert ; a few green and 
brown seaweeds, little fish darting in the pools, occasional sea-snails 
with dense shells, and a few hermit-crabs heavily armoured, are all that 

Fig. 11. — Tidal platform and margin of reef. 

is seen at first glance. All the inhabitants of the tidal platform seem 
to stand in dread of the sea ; even the active shore crabs {Grapsus) are 
afraid of it, and only venture in when inspired by their greater terror 
of the human form ; even then they cling tenaciously with their many 
legs close to the sides of the rocky shore, and sidle off to land directly 
they fancy the enemy's back is turned. 

The observer who trusted to first impressions, and judged the plat- 
form by its outer aspect, would fall into grievous error ; it is by no 
means so dead as it seems. On breaking off a fragment with a 
hammer a new world of life is revealed ; the rock is tunnelled through 
and through, as closely as it can be mined, by a variety of animals, 
which have taken to an underground life as a protection against the 
sea : worms, shell-fish, crabs, sea-squirts, and barnacles are to be 
found in these subterranean dwellings ; they constitute a specialised 


fauna of marine troglodytes, which might, if we wished to add to the 
burden of nomenclature, be designated the " Cryptone." 

After this brief description of the superficial features of the atoll, 
we may next endeavour to trace the history of that part of it which 
rises above the sea and properly constitutes the land. The sheet of 
hard coral-rock, which we mentioned as cropping out beneath the 
storm-beach, can be traced into the interior of the island, where it forms 
the floor of the central depression ; and again to the lagoon side, where 
it emerges to form the floor of the lagoon, and in many places the 
beach, or as well even a low line of cliffs. In the little islet of Pava, 
north of Funafuti, it is seen to extend continuously from one side of 
the land to the other — from the ocean to the lagoon. 

We may therefore fairly conclude that this sheet of rock forms the 
solid base on which the land above it rests. It is composed mainly of 
slabs of coral, lying not quite horizontally, but overlapping like the tiles 
of a roof, with a slight inclination towards the ocean side of the reef. 

These fragments have evidently been derived from the outer zone of 
growing coral. Before the land, as it now exists, was formed, the waves 
were incessantly engaged in tearing off fragments from the coral zone, and 
driving; them across the reef into the lagoon, till a thick sheet of debris was 
the result. This became consolidated as it formed, partly by the growth 
of incrusting calcareous algae, and now forms the solid floor of the island. 

Masses of broken corals, torn up and driven inland by the breakers, 
continued to accumulate after the formation of the floor ; and thus that 
great pile of coral clinkers, which forms the storm-beach, has been and 
is still being built up. 

On the other side, the wavelets of the lagoon have washed up 
smaller fragments of coral and foraminiferal shells, and thus the strip 
of land which borders the lagoon, and on which the village of Funafuti 
stands, has been produced. 

The middle of the island — the great central depression including the 
taro ground and the mangrove swamp — is the remains of the original 
solid platform left exposed between the storm-beach on the one hand and 
the lagoon land on the other. Thus all that portion of Funafuti which 
stands above high tide has been cast up from the ocean and the lagoon, 
and this beautiful island, like another Aphrodite, has been born with the 
foam from the waves of the sea. 

If this be the true history of the island, how then did it acquire its 
inhabitants ? (Fig. 12). Did they climb upwards, like the corals, as the 
island was submerged, or did they arrive as flotsom and jetsom of the sea. 
As regards the natives there can be but one answer — they came by 
boat. In former clays the Polynesians possessed excellent sea-going 
craft, in which they were accustomed to make long voyages, steering 
by the stars and other signs in the sky. They well knew how to 
preserve food by drying, and thus had no difficulty in provisioning for 
a cruise. The routes they followed in passing from island to island are 

3 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 83. 




gradually becoming known to us ; and have been indicated on a chart 
by Professor Haddon. Considering the remarkable similarity of 
language which characterises all Polynesia, from New Zealand on the 
south to the Sandwich Isles on the north, there can be little doubt 
that the migrations of these peoples must have taken place com- 
paratively recently, and judging from tradition one might conjecture 
within the last seven or eight hundred years. 

Thus long before the illustrious townsman of this city, John Cabot, 
had anticipated Columbus in his famous voyage to America, these navi- 
gators, whom we libel with the name of savages, were venturing on 
equally arduous explorations, with still more imperfect means at their 

Fig. 12. — A Group of Natives, Funafuti. 

command. It was not often, however, that long voyages of over a 
thousand miles were made of set purpose ; too frequently they were the 
result of accident, as when frail canoes were overtaken by a sudden 
storm and driven at the mercy of the winds, sometimes to perish 
miserably, sometimes by good hap to land on undiscovered shores. 

The Funafuti people seem some of them to have entered the 
island with intent, others are mere waifs and strays cast away by 
shipwreck on the reef. The prevailing stock is Samoan, with an 
admixture of Tongan. In bygone times the Tongans used to make 
periodical descents upon the island, after the fashion of the Vikings in 
early English history. The Tongans, however, came not only to kill 
but to eat their foes, a proceeding not wholly unintelligible among a 
people who knew absolutely of no other kind of meat. In justice to 
the copper-coloured races of Polynesia I hasten to add that cannibalism 


was seldom the custom of this folk ; wherever it is met with it may be 
taken to indicate the influence of black blood. So far as we know 
cannibals are almost always black people. 

Returning to the boring party, which we left busily engaged. For 
nearly three weeks they worked by shifts continuously night and day, but 
at the end of that time, when the bore-hole was only 105 feet deep, their 
most arduous efforts failed to advance it further. The difficulties 
opposed by the nature of the ground — a mixture of flowing sand and 
obdurate boulders — were such that neither the good-will of the workmen 
nor the ingenuity of Ayles, the foreman, could contend against them, 
and there was no alternative but to abandon the undertaking. 

Thinking that there might be a better prospect of success on the 
ocean side of the reef, we determined to make a fresh attempt there, 
and in two days, without the help of wheels and in a country without 
roads, we succeeded in transporting the bulk of our twenty-five tons of 
machinery across the island to a fresh site. The new boring commenced 
in hard rock and at first deepened rapidly. Before long, however, it 
entered a mixture of sand and boulders similar to that we had previously 
encountered, and after attaining a depth of 72 feet further progress be- 
came impossible. We left the island on 30th July, and on reaching Fiji 
had the mortification to learn that we had passed on the way a ship coming 
to our assistance with a fresh supply of machinery, which our friends 
in Sydney had promptly despatched on hearing of our difficulties. 

Our attempt to penetrate the reef had proved a failure, but it 
was not wholly without result. It had revealed the nature of the 
material with which any subsequent attempts at boring would have to 
contend, and it had added one more surprise to the history of atolls, 
for no one had suspected that for a depth of over 100 feet the island 
would be found to consist of more sand than coral, or in other words, 
that the organisms which play the chief part in the construction of a 
coral reef are not corals, but Foraminifera ! 

The expedition had other objects in view besides boring. The 
next in importance was the investigation of the atoll by sounding. 
This was accomplished with complete success by Captain Field. Other 
atolls had been sounded before, but never before had an atoll been 
sounded with such accuracy and completeness as was Funafuti on this 
occasion. The form of the floor of the lagoon was made more exactly 
known than that of most lakes in the British Isles. The slopes of the 
flanks of the atoll were determined in four different directions, approxi- 
mately at right angles to each other and running about N., S., E., and W. 
A study of these enables us to frame a clear picture of the general 
form of the atoll. It is a conical mountain with an oval base situated 
at a depth of about 2000 fathoms, measuring 30 miles in length by 
28 in breadth. It rises at first with a very gentle slope but gradually 
grows steeper as it ascends (Fig. 13), till at a depth of 400 or 500 fathoms 
it begins to present precipitous faces, and above 130 to 140 fathoms is 




crowned by the almost vertical cliffs of Chamisso's " table-mountain," 
which, as he rightly divined, is of a similar nature from base to 
summit. All this is coral reef; how much more may be so it is 
impossible in the present state of our knowledge to say. 

The general feeling of disappointment with which our failure to 
bore through the reef was received was fully shared by our friends in 
Sydney. Determined not to be put off with a first rebuff, they 
promptly commenced to make arrangements for a second attempt, and 
last year (1897) an expedition again left Sydney for Funafuti, this 
time under the direction of Professor Edgeworth David of the University 
of Sydney. Under his leadership the boring proved a complete success. 
The reef was penetrated to a depth of 697 feet, or 116 fathoms. 
Thus Darwin's wish has now been more than satisfied. The core 


Fig. 13. 

brought up was sent over to this country, and is now in the hands of 
Professor Judd for investigation. Till he has completed his report it 
would be premature to enter into details, but from a general examina- 
tion, made without the aid of the microscope, I think I may fairly 
venture to say this much, that the material brought up from the 
boring, and of which the reef is composed, presents much the same 
general character throughout, and so far supports Darwin's theory ; 
that layers of chalky ooze, such as on Sir John Murray's hypothesis 
we might have expected to find in the lower parts, are conspicuously 
absent ; and finally that it presents no trace of volcanic material. 

On whatever side judgment may ultimately be given in this 
question, the thanks of the scientific world must undoubtedly be conceded 
to Sir John Murray for having disturbed a decided opinion from its 
slumber, for having awakened a fresh interest in Darwin's theory, and 
in thus leading to renewed investigation, which is both adding to our 
knowledge and suggesting fresh inquiry. 

The sand showing little trace of consolidation which was noticed in 
our boring down to 100 feet is maintained in Professor David's boring- 
down to about 100 fathoms, and it is not a little remarkable that 


material so loosely aggregated should be able to sustain itself in slopes 
of as much as 80°, such as characterise the flanks of Funafuti. It is im- 
portant, however, to observe that none of the borings yet made have been 
sunk through the true growing substance of the atoll. They have com- 
menced on the lagoon side of the true coral reef, and the deeper they have 
descended the more remote they have become from the ocean flanks. The 
possibility exists, and should not be overlooked, that a great part of the 
material passed through in the bore-holes represents deposits of the 
lagoon and of the fragmentary debris driven towards it by the breakers. 

It will be observed that Professor David's bore -hole does not 
traverse the whole thickness of the table-mountain ; judging from the 
soundings, it would have to descend 20 or 30 fathoms deeper to do 
this, and it would seem likely that the material obtained from this last 
20 or 30 fathoms might surpass in interest all the rest. Our friends 
in Sydney fully appreciate this, and are so bent on probing this question 
to the utmost, that they have already despatched, at great pecuniary 
risk, an expedition to make a third attempt on Funafuti, and this time 
to carry the bore-hole right through the table-mountain. 

The boring party is at this moment at work on the island, and 
before many weeks have elapsed we may expect to receive tidings of 
their success. A crreat stride will then have been taken towards a final 
determination of the long-standing controversy on the origin of atolls. 1 

We eagerly await the result, which will inform us whether these 

central oceanic islands are ancient remains of land which have plunged 

beneath the sea and are renewing their youth, or whether they are among 

the latest products -of our planet, aspiring mountains which have scarcely 

yet succeeded in their struggle upward to the light of day ; whether 

they are, as has been said, " a garland laid by the hand of Nature on 

the tomb of a sunken island," or whether they may not be a wreath of 

victory crowning a youthful summit on its first conquest of the main. 

1 The critical point has been passed. (See Nat. Sci. xiii. p. 362.) According to the 
news from Funafuti (Sept. 6) the boring attained a depth of 987 feet, or 147 feet below the 
base of the steepest cliff. The material passed through was coral limestone. It is of 
interest to observe that, soon after passing the bottom of Professor David's bore-hole, loose 
unconsolidated deposits ceased to be encountered, and the drill passed with comparative 
facility through a hard limestone containing numerous well-preserved corals. A crux of 
all theories of atolls is the lagoon. On Darwin's theory its explanation follows naturally 
from the fundamental assumption. Sir John Murray has to supplement his hypothesis by 
a separate explanation, and proposes to account for the lagoon by solution. In this connec- 
tion the success which has attended an attempt of the present expedition to bore into the 
bed of the lagoon is most welcome. The boring was made from the deck of H.M.S. 
" Porpoise," commanded by Capt. Sturdee, and after passing through 101 feet of water sank 
144 feet into the deposits of the floor. The first 80 feet were found to consist of the calcareous 
alga Hcdimeda mixed with shells ; the remaining 64 feet of the same material, mingled 
with coral gravel. This alga is universally distributed over the floor of the lagoon, as 
proved by an examination of the material obtained by Capt. Field in sounding, and since 
it contains a certain percentage of magnesium carbonate we are led to expect that the 
formation of dolomite will be found to stand in some connection with the transformation of 
lagoon deposits. 

169 Woodstock Road, Oxford. 

Professor Weldon's Evidence of the Operation of 

Natural Selection. 

By J. T. Cunningham, M.A. 

In his Presidential Address before Section D of the British Association, 
at its last meeting, Professor Weldon gave an account of his investiga- 
tions of the variation of the shore crab in Plymouth Sound. The 
Address is printed in the number of Nature for September 22, 1898. 
The evidence it contains is considered by the author to prove, firstly, 
that a certain change has taken place in one character of the animals 
in question in the period of five years, and secondly, that the change 
has been caused by a selective destruction of individuals, due to the 
increasing turbidity of the water in which they live. These con- 
clusions, if correct, would be of very great importance, and for this 
reason it is necessary to examine and consider carefully the evidence 
on which they are based. I have examined the evidence, and it does 
not seem to me to furnish the proof required. I propose to state here 
the reasons why I am unable to accept Professor Weldon's conclusions. 

He gives, in the first place, three determinations of the mean frontal 
breadth of the crabs, expressed in terms of the carapace length taken 
as 1000. In other words, he measures the frontal breadths of in- 
dividual crabs, and expresses them as so many thousandths of the 
length of the carapace. The three determinations are one for each of 
the years 1893, 1895, and 1898. It is important to observe that the 
mean frontal breadth in crabs collected at the same time varies very 
rapidly with the length of the carapace. The mean was therefore 
determined for every *2 mm. of carapace length in crabs from 10 to 
15 mm. lono-. The larger the crabs, the less is the mean relative 
frontal breadth. For example, in crabs 10"! mm. long in 1893, it 
Was 816 thousandths of the length; in crabs 14 - 9 mm. long, it was 
751 thousandths — a decrease of 65, omitting decimal fractions. 

For groups of the same carapace length the mean frontal breadth 
was less in 1895 than in 1893, and less in 1898 than in 1895, but 
the numbers measured in 1898 were admittedly very small. Here 
arises the first objection to the argument. The dimension was less in 
crabs of the same size, but every dimension observed in one year was 



present in the other years, in crabs of a different size. The character 
investigated is in a state of transformation during growth. Crabs of a 
given size, say 12*1 mm., were narrower in 1895 than those of the 
same size in 1893, but crabs of 1895, a little smaller, had the same 
frontal breadth as those of 12*1 mm. in 1893. In other words, a given 
mean frontal breadth was never wanting in any of the three years, but 
was found associated with a different size of the crab. From this fact 
alone it is impossible to base any argument concerning selection on the 
variations observed and recorded in Professor Weldon's Address. The 
variations investigated are variations of the mean frontal breadth in 
proportion to carapace length, and it is not even suggested that any 
particular variations were absent, or less frequent, less common, in one 
year than another. It is merely stated, and may be accepted as a 
fact, that each degree of the dimension was found in smaller crabs in 
the later years. It does not matter whether we say that crabs of a 
given size were found to be narrower in frontal breadth, or that crabs 
of the same frontal breadth were found to be of smaller size. In 
consequence of the diminution of the frontal breadth with increase of 
size both statements are equally true. 

Before proceeding to the explanation given of the cause of the 
change, it may be noticed that in a footnote a previous hypothesis put 
forward by Prof. Weldon concerning the selective destruction of varia- 
tions in this character is now abandoned, and we are informed that it 
is to be replaced by the results contained in the Presidential Address. 
That previous hypothesis was that the narrowest as well as the broadest 
fronted crabs were killed off, so that the range of variation in the older 
and larger crabs was reduced. Of this previous conclusion a very eminent 
Darwinian said at the time, in a letter to Nature, that its demonstration 
"deserved to rank among the most remarkable achievements in connection 
with the theory of evolution." It is evident now that this admiration was 
premature ; the process was hypothetical, had never been demonstrated 
at all, and the hypothesis is now abandoned in favour of a kind of 
selection which is quite inconsistent with that formerly suggested. 

The measurements, to which I have referred above, all relate to 
male crabs ; the change in females during the same time is said to be 
less in amount though in the same direction. 

Prof. Weldon is confident that the change is due to a selective 
destruction caused by increase in the amount of sediment in Plymouth 
Sound. According to his argument the turbidity of the water in the 
Sound is increasing because the breakwater obstructs the scour of the 
tide and removal of the silt, while china clay is brought down by the 
rivers from Dartmoor, and the increasing population, dockyard, and 
shipping imply the passage of more sewage and refuse into the Sound. 

In order to ascertain whether the broader fronted crabs were killed 
by sediment, a number of specimens were put into a large vessel of 
water in which fine china clay was placed and kept suspended by an 

4 o / T. CUNNINGHAM [january 

agitator. After various periods of time the dead crabs were separated 
from the living, and the mean frontal breadth of those that died was 
distinctly greater than that of the survivors. 

A similar result was obtained when crabs were treated in the same 
way with fine mud obtained from the shore on which they were found. 
Professor Weldon concludes that the action of mud on the beach is 
the same as in the experiment, and that here we have a case of natural 
selection acting with great rapidity because of the rapidity with which 
the conditions of life are changing. 

Lastly, there is another experiment in which some hundreds of 
crabs were kept, each in a separate bottle until it moulted, when of 
course it became larger. At first some crabs died and these were 
found to be those with broadest frontal regions. This was therefore 
a selective destruction without the influence of mud, and was proved 
by a separate experiment to be due to the putrefaction of the particles 
of food with which the crabs were fed. So that organic putrefaction 
and bacteria have the same effect on the crabs as inorganic sediment. 
The surviving crabs moulted, and after they had hardened their new 
shells they were killed and measured, and their dimensions compared 
with the dimensions they had before the moult, as ascertained from 
the cast shells. Before the moult the mean frontal breadth was below 
the normal for the size, afterwards it was above the normal for the 
new size, and some specimens were very remarkably broad. The 
reason for this is stated to be that the same crabs were measured at 
the two sizes, while in nature during the interval the broadest speci- 
mens had been killed off. 

With regard to the experiments with china clay and mud, I 
would point out that the smallest and youngest crabs are the broadest 
fronted, and that the result might easily be explained on the 
hypothesis that the smallest and youngest crabs succumbed first. 
Professor Weldon believes that death occurs because a narrow frontal 
breadth renders the filtration of the water entering the branchial 
chamber more efficient. But filtration would depend on the absolute 
size of the apparatus, and this is getting larger as the crab grows 
larger ; therefore the larger crabs ought to be killed first, and in nature 
all the adults ought to be killed. On the other hand, if relative 
frontal breadth has the importance supposed, the selective destruction 
ought to be greatest on the very young crabs, and if it kills the 
broadest fronted of those between 10 and 15 mm. long, it ought to 
kill all those under 10 mm. in length, since these are all broader. In 
this case there would be no crabs over 10 mm. in length. 

In fact, Professor Weldon argues that selective destruction has in 
five years produced a diminution of not more than 18 units in 
the frontal breadth of crabs of the same size, while his observations 
show that there are living on the same shore at the same time 
multitudes of crabs of different sizes whose frontal breadths differ by 


as much as G5 units. If we took into account crabs less than 10 mm. 
long and adults, the difference in their relative frontal breadths would 
be much more than 65 units. As a proof that the cause of death in the 
experiments with fine clay or mud was the entrance of the latter into 
the gill chamber, Professor Weldon states that the gills of the crabs 
which died were generally covered with the sediment, while those of the 
survivors were not. But the dead crabs were taken out at the end of the 
experiment, so that they had been in the muddy water some time after 
death, while the survivors were taken out alive. It is possible, there- 
fore, that the sediment found its way in after death, and the evidence is 
no proof that filtration was more efficient in one case than in the other. 

From Professor Weldon's own point of view the result of the 
moulting experiment does not bear the interpretation he puts upon it. 
He states that the crabs measured before the moult were on the 
average narrower than those on the shore. Therefore, immediately 
after the moult these same crabs would still have been narrower than 
their fellows on the shore which were of the same size before the 
moult, and moulted at the same time. Consider 500 crabs, say all 
10 mm. in length, in the bottles, and 500 of the same size on the 
shore. The former have narrower frontal regions. Both undergo 
a moult at the same time ; if there is no difference in the growth 
of the two groups the crabs in the bottles must be still narrower, 
for they are the same crabs in another stage. But those on 
the shore are exposed to selective destruction after the moult. This 
cannot well reduce the mean frontal breadth below that of those in the 
bottles, for it now has a narrower breadth to act upon, and in the 
previous stage it was not able to reduce the frontal breadth so low as 
that of those in the bottles. Of course I understand that after the 
moult some of those on the shore are supposed to be killed off, and 
none of those in the bottles. But the 500 on the shore were broader 
to start with by actual observation, and if they could survive with this 
greater breadth at the size before the moult, I fail to see why many 
should be killed off when they reach a larger size and a narrower relative 
frontal breadth. Moreover, there are, in fact, multitudes of crabs on 
the shore a little smaller than those in the bottles after the moult, and 
of the same mean frontal breadth. 

It seems to me, as I suggested in a letter to Nature, that all 
Professor Weldon's observations may be completely explained by varia- 
tions in the amount or rate of growth. The difference in different years 
would be at once explained if the amount of change in frontal breadth 
was constant for each moult, while the amount of growth was variable. 
The fact is, that in 1893 crabs of a given frontal breadth were larger 
than in 1895 and 1898 ; and I have shown that the summer of 1893 
was exceptionally fine and warm. Either the warmth alone, or warmth 
and food together, very probably made the crabs grow more in that year 
for the same number of moults. On this view the broad-fronted crabs 

42 J. T. CUNNINGHAM [januaky 

died in the experiments with clay and mud because they were younger 
and weaker. In the same way the crabs that moulted in the bottles 
possibly grew more than those in the sea, because they were kept in 
warmer water and supplied with more food. Therefore they were, after the 
moult, larger than those in the sea of the same relative frontal breadth. 

My suggestion is also in accordance with the fact stated by Professor 
Weldon that there was less change in female crabs than in male. If 
the difference of frontal breadth was the cause of selective destruction, 
it is difficult to see why it should act on one sex more than on the 
other. On the other hand, it is known that male crabs are larger when 
adult than females, therefore they grow faster, and their growth would 
be more affected by changes in the conditions of life in different years. 

Professor Weldon states, in reply to my letter in Nature, that he 
has tested my suggestion and found that it is not in accordance with 
the facts. Apparently he has examined the measurements of the 
crabs which moulted in his experiment, and found that those which 
increased most in size at the moult did not differ in frontal breadth 
from the mean of those of the same size on the shore, more than those 
which grew least. According to Professor Weldon's original statement, the 
crabs that moulted were on the average broader than those of the same 
size on the shore. According to my suggestion, the broadest individuals 
should be those that grew most at the moult. This my opponent denies. 
I have asked him to produce the figures, but he declines to do so 
until all the figures relating to the matter are ready for publication. 

As a proof that in the experiments with mud or clay the youngest 
crabs did not die first, he has instanced an experiment in which, out of 
many crabs 10 to 15 mm. long, only four survived, all under 13 mm. 
But he does not say that these four were the narrowest, as they ought 
to have been on his own hypothesis. If they were, they may also have 
been the oldest, or they may have been, if my second suggestion (see 
below) is correct, those which had grown fastest and were therefore the 
most vigorous. If they were not narrower than all the others which 
died, the experiment does not support Professor Weldon's conclusions. 

Mr. Walter Garstang has challenged my suggestion in another 
way. In a letter to Nature he contends that exuviation is essentially 
connected with the process of growth in Crustacea, and that " in 
assuming similarity of size in young shore crabs to indicate an equal 
number of moults, Professor Weldon is quite in accord with our 
present knowledge of the subject." It would take up too much space 
to enter here upon a discussion of the question whether ecdysis is 
essentially related to increase in size or not, but I may refer to certain 
facts as to the relation between size and the number of moults. 

In 1884 the late Mr. George Brook published a paper on the 
" Eate of Development of the Common Shore Crab " {Ann. and Mag. 
Nat. Hist. vol. xiv. pp. 202-207). He recorded a number of observa- 
tions and measurements of young crabs kept alive for various periods in 


captivity. Some of the specimens grew at nearly the same rate, that 
is to say, the increase in size was nearly the same after the same 
number of moults. But in other specimens this was not the case. 

In August 1883 he obtained five specimens in the Megalopa stage. 
He gives the dates of the moults of two of these, and the sizes after 
each moult. These specimens he distinguishes as A and B. The 
latter, B, was later in moulting than A ; its fifth moult (after it had 
attained to the crab-form) occurred on April 23, 1884, while A 
moulted for the fifth time on March 8. The crab, after the fifth 
moult, was in the case of B 5*7 mm. long, in the case of A 4 - 44 mm. 
long, a difference of 1*3 mm. In February both of these crabs had 
moulted four times, and there was a difference of *34 mm. between 
them. This proves that crabs of different sizes on a given date in 
some cases have moulted the same number of times. Supposing the 
change in relative frontal breadth to be constant, or to be less variable 
than the increase in size, then these two crabs of different sizes would 
have nearly the same relative frontal breadth. To take another case 
from the same paper. A crab N was 12-5 mm. long in July 1882. 
After five moults, in the following May, ten months, it was 37 mm. 
long. Another crab Y was 12 mm. long in September 1882; after 
five moults, in the following June it was 45 mm. long, the moults 
having only occupied nine months. Here we have a difference of no 
less than 8 mm. in the carapace lengths of two crabs after the same 
number of moults, although their original difference was "5 mm. In 
one case the increase was 24'5 mm., in the other 33 mm., a difference of 
8 '5 mm. in the increment. This shows how great may be the difference 
in the amount of growth after a given number of ecdyses. Supposing 
the larger crab did not cast its shell again for a month, we have the 
above difference of growth after not only the same number of moults, 
but after the same interval of time. If we look at the measurements 
recorded, we find that after four moults the crab Y was nearly of the 
same size as the crab N after five moults. Supposing then that the 
change in frontal breadth at each moult is nearly constant, is not 
proportional to the change in size, then the crab Y, though of the same 
size as N, was one moult behind it, and therefore of distinctly greater 
frontal breadth, since the relative frontal breadth decreases at each 
moult. Thus, if the crabs in 1893 in Plymouth Sound grew as much 
in a given moult as Y, while in 1895 they grew at the rate of X, then 
the crabs of the same size in the two years would represent different 
numbers of moults. Unfortunately Mr. Brook did not measure the 
frontal breadths, and therefore I cannot carry the argument further, but 
it seems to me extremely probable that the change in the frontal 
breadth of crabs which reached a given size in four moults, would not be 
the same as in those which reached it in five moults. If that is correct, 
all Professor Weldon's evidence proves is that the crabs grew more at 
each moult in 1893 than in 1895, and the evidence he has produced 

44 / T. CUNNINGHAM [januaky 

has no bearing on natural selection at all. Of course I admit that some 
of the crabs in Mr. Brook's experiments grew nearly the same amount 
in the same number of moults, but the point is that others did not. 

Another curious point brought out by Brook's records is that, when 
a given number of moults results in greater growth, the time occupied 
by those moults may be more or less than in the case when the growth 
was less. Thus, in the second of the above cases the larger crab took 
less time for the same number of moults than the smaller crab, in the 
former case the larger crab took longer time than the smaller for the 
same number of moults. It is evident that the relation of the growth 
of a crab to age and ecdysis is very complicated. 

Professor Weldon has however informed me privately that he finds 
the abnormality of frontal breadth to be very nearly independent of the 
growth-rate during a moult, but that the difference, such as it is, shows 
that the crabs which grow most are on the whole very slightly narrower 
after their moult than those which grow least, in comparison with those of 
the same size in the sea. In consequence of this it has occurred to me 
that perhaps my first suggestion was wrong, and that the effect of con- 
ditions on growth is exactly opposite to that described above. It is 
certain that both the frontal breadth and the carapace length are 
growing, and that the carapace length grows faster, since the larger 
crab has an absolutely greater but relatively narrower frontal breadth. 
Now, if any circumstance such as temperature or food increases the 
growth, it may affect the carapace length more than it affects the 
frontal breadth. In that case the crab that grew most in one moult 
would be the narrowest. For example, suppose that a crab has a 
carapace length of 1000 units, and a frontal breadth of 800 units. 
Suppose that under ordinary circumstances in two moults the carapace 
length increases to 1050 and the frontal breadth to 820, then the crab 
is of course larger and relatively narrower. Now, suppose that the 
growth is so hastened that it reaches the same carapace length in one 
moult. The effect on the growth of the frontal breadth may not be so 
great, and thus this dimension may only increase in the one moult to 
815 ; thus the crab of the same carapace length is narrower because it 
has grown twice as fast. Perhaps this view of the law of growth is 
more probable than the other. 

But it will be said this new suggestion could not fit the same facts 
as the other. It would fit the same facts of observation, though of 
course the supposed conditions of life must be different. The con- 
ditions on this hypothesis were more favourable to growth in 1895 
and 1898 than in 1893. In the experiment when the narrowest 
fronted crabs of those of the same size survived, it would have been 
because they were younger but more vigorous than those which had not 
grown so fast, the rapidity of growth being a sign not of weakness but 
of strength. In the moulting experiment the amount of growth would 
on this hypothesis be less than in crabs on the shore, and therefore the 


crabs would be broader than those of the same size on the shore. 
Whatever the influences of conditions on growth may be, I feel convinced 
that the facts observed by Professor Weldon are due to such influence, 
and for the reasons I have given, not to selective destruction. I have 
shown that either of my two hypotheses would explain the facts better 
than the selective destruction which Professor Weldon believes to be 
the cause. 

In 1895 Professor Weldon stated that his statistical results could 
not be considered to be established until the law of growth of the 
crabs had been experimentally investigated. Yet he now publishes 
with equal confidence quite different results from statistical data, 
although in the meantime he has produced no evidence whatever 
concerning the relation between variations of growth and change in 
the relative frontal breadth. 

In reply to my letter in Nature Professor Weldon urged that, if 
my suggestions were correct, crabs gathered in January would be 
narrower in the frontal region than those of the same size gathered in 
August, and he had found that those gathered last January were not 
narrower than those gathered last August. But such a result does 
not follow from my view. According to Mr. Brook's experiments 
crabs above 10 mm. in length would be at least a year old, and 
therefore had been under the influence of all seasons of the year, and 
shore crabs hatch their eggs from February or March till late in 
summer. Therefore crabs taken in January have not necessarily grown 
under more unfavourable conditions. On the other hand, the observa- 
tion of Professor Weldon that the crabs taken in January were not 
narrower than those taken in August shows that there had not been a 
continuous diminution in frontal breadth from August 1893 to August 
1898, as he stated in his Address. 

Whether either of my suggestions in explanation of the observed 
facts be correct or not, I think I have shown that the evidence on 
which Professor Weldon bases his conclusions is quite inadequate to 
establish them. The change described is not, if terms are used 
correctly, a change in the character of the species, but merely a change 
in the rate of development. The variations investigated are not 
individual differences, since each individual in the course of its growth 
passes through each one of the variations in its own person. It has 
not been shown that the change has gone 011 continuously for five 
years, or that it has taken place only in waters where there is much 
mud. If tadpoles of the same size were found to have shorter tails in 
one year than in another, few biologists would draw the conclusion that 
the result was clue to the selective destruction of those with the longest 
tails. The more probable explanation would be that those with the 
shorter tails were in a more advanced stage of their metamorphosis. 

1 Moerae Terrace, Penzance. 

Biological Analogy and Speech-Development. 

By Henry Cecil Wyld. 

Professor Paul, in the chapter headed " Sprachspaltung " of his 
luminous book " Die Principien der Sprachgeschichte " (2 te Aufi : Halle 
1886), places on record his astonishment that students of the science 
of language do not oftener seek analogies for the phenomena of speech - 
development from the processes of development which obtain in organic 
nature. It is indeed to be lamented that philologists do not often 
make themselves familiar with biological method, and with the main 
results attained for evolutionary thought in this domain of science. 
For, indeed, did students of language possess an organised system of 
thought upon lines of evolution, as applied to speech, there can 
be small doubt that not only would linguistic science be placed upon a 
broader and more philosophic basis than it rests on at present, but from 
the nature of the field of inquiry evolutionary thought as a whole would 
receive a most suggestive contribution. It is indeed possible that many 
general questions, upon which at the present moment the minds of 
biologists are clouded with a doubt, would be set at rest one way or the 
other, and this or that theory of the modes of evolution would be either 
exploded or firmly established. For, whereas biologists have to trust 
to an imperfect geological record for a large part of their evidence, the 
philologist may observe in the course of five hundred years a change 
in language, much more significant and considerable than the same 
number of millenniums could effect upon species of animals or plants. 

Professor Paul then ventures upon an analogy, and a fascinating 
one it is, between the factors and conditions which determine the 
evolution of species and those which govern change in language. 

Unfortunately not only does this analogy share with others the 
fate of containing a fallacy, but the whole passage is, in my opinion, 
fraught with no small confusion of thought and phrase. His case is 
briefly this — 

Development in animal life depends upon two main factors : first, 
the characters of the parents ; second, the environment to which the 
organism is subjected after its birth. The results of these factors are : 
from the first (the hereditary group) similarity with the parents, and 



therefore adherence to the general characters of the type ; from the 
second, the possibility, within certain limits, of departure or divergence 
from the ancestral type. 

With regard to speech, we find likewise two main factors of develop- 
ment : on the one hand, the speech of each individual is acquired from 
and moulded by the commerce of his associates, whom we are to con- 
sider as his linguistic parents as it were, while on the other hand, it is 
modified by his independent personal peculiarities and idiosyncrasies. 

For speech, as for species, the former of these two factors, or groups 
of factors, is by far the more important, and that because every modifica- 
tion of the nature of the individual (speech or organism) which diverges 
from the originally inherited tendency, determines the direction of varia- 
tion for the succeeding generation. 

But we must not forget, says Professor Paul, that there are import- 
ant differences between the conditions under which an animal on the 
one hand, and a language on the other, is born. For whereas the direct 
influence of the parents ceases for the animal from the moment of its 
birth ; the speech-parents of an individual exert their influence from 
his first infant babblings down to the latest moment of his life, although 
in a varying degree. 

Again, whereas the animal or plant has but two, sometimes only 
one parent, the speaking individual learns from hundreds of different 
speakers, and has therefore an almost infinite number of " strains " 
infused into his speech. This I believe to be an accurate statement of 
Professor Paul's suggestive comparison. 

But if we examine it closely, and endeavour to use it as a starting- 
point from which to think out the process of speech-development, the 
analogy fails us at every turn, and appears, in fact, to lead us into one 
blind alley after another. In the first place, it is surely a confusion of 
terms to speak of an inherited character as a " factor " of development. 
It is rather a fact of life. The factors which may modify the inherited 
characters are left untouched and unnamed. If we were to say that 
an organism inherits tendencies to change in a certain direction, we 
might then, I conceive, talk of this inherited tendency as a " factor " in 
evolution or development ; but Professor Paul seems to take for granted 
that all inherited characters make for a conservation of type, so that 
they are thus, strictly speaking, hot factors of development at all. In 
passing, we may note that it is scarcely biologically conceivable that 
characters acquired in the lifetime of the individual, mere modifications 
of structure from the action of the environment, should form a starting- 

7 o 

point for permanent variations in the species, or, as Professor Paul puts 
it, that " every modification of the nature of the individual which 
diverges from the originally inherited tendency determines the direc- 
tion of variation for the succeeding generation." But we need not 
pause here to discuss the moot question of whether acquired characters 
are inherited, but may pass on to criticise the justness of the rest of 

4 8 HENRY CECIL WYLD [janttary 

the above comparison between language and species. It appears that 
we are to consider the speakers from whom we learn our language 
as corresponding to the parents on the biological plane, and the 
speaker's own individual temperament of mind and body as corresponding 
to environment. Now, as a matter of fact, the great majority of speakers 
with whom we come in contact must, as regards their influence, be 
divided into at least two classes : the persons who, in the first place, 
teach us the beginnings of speech, and the persons who afterwards 
modify in one way or another the speech which we already possess. 
The first class are all those speakers who help to build up our mode of 
speech down to the moment when, so to speak, our speech crystallises 
and becomes characteristic of ourselves. This moment is, of course, an 
abstraction, but there comes a time in the life of each individual 
speaker when his habit of speech is to all intents and purposes 
formed, and after which he practically ceases to " learn." Until this 
happens, we may, if we choose, consider our associates as our speech- 
parents. This is, as it were, the period of gestation, and when it is 
over our independent life begins ; independent, that is to say, just as far 
as any life can be independent of its environment. The associates of 
this second period of life, in which we are independent of parents, must 
be considered rather as part of the linguistic environment. Professor 
Paul's contention that the animal has only two parents is, of course, 
without weight, since the individual organism is the product, not of a 
single pair, but of millions of ancestors, any one of whom, remote or 
near, may assert his supremacy in the building up of his descendant. 
In this way the physical structure of an animal is the result of factors 
certainly no less numerous, complex, and varied than those which go to 
the making of a man's manner of speech. 

It seems to me improper to drag the mental and physical con- 
stitution of the speaker into this analogy, because to do so is to go off 
into the domain of biology and psychology, and we are comparing 
linguistic facts with facts of organic life, and not these with themselves. 
But, it may be asked, are we to leave these facts altogether out of con- 
sideration as regards language and its development ? The answer is, 
certainly not, and the whole difficulty arises from having made a false 
analogy at the outset. There is an unfortunate habit amongst students 
of language, of considering this as if it had an existence apart from the 
speakers. Professor Paul in his brilliant book has done more, perhaps, 
than any other philologist to break through this mode of thought, but 
he has apparently lapsed into it again in the chapter on " Sprach- 

The safest way to think of language is as a habit of body express- 
ing a habit of mind. Sounds, which are the external side of speech, 
are due to certain modes of movement of the vocal organs. Vocabulary, 
or system of nomenclature, is the association of sounds with emotions 
and ideas. Grammar, a further mental process, is the expression of 


the perceived relations of emotions and ideas with other emotions and 
ideas. The very articulation of sounds, as Professor Paul admirably 
and clearly points out, is due to certain psychological processes. Thus 
each division of language depends upon mental states, and the sounds 
themselves which body these forth are the direct results of organic 
movements. It becomes clear then that speech, like other habits, and 
perhaps in a more subtle and complex manner than any other habit, is 
learnt in the beginning by imitation, and is modified and moulded by 
each individual in the mint of his mental and bodily personality. 
According to this view, therefore, the factor which makes for conserva- 
tion of speech type is the necessity for intelligibility : that which 
makes for variation is divergency of temperament, psychological and 
physiological, among the speakers. But although the dominating func- 
tion of these two factors is respectively change, and a hindering of 
change, they each contain the potentialities of the converse. For, since 
there is undoubtedly an objective tendency on the part of a community 
as a whole to slowly change their speech in the same direction, it is 
clear that a wilful conservatism on the part of the individual would defeat 
his object of being intelligible to his fellows. So, again, the tendency 
of the individual to vary in habits of body and mind will have a limit 
set to it by conditions of life, of climate, of race, of education, of ideals, 
and of morals, which he will undergo in common with the other 
members of the society to which he and they belong. 

It is these cross currents of tendency which complicate the whole 
problem of the evolution of speech, and make it difficult to state the 
question with clearness and completeness. Still, these difficulties must 
some day be met, and it cannot be denied that so far nobody has. made 
an adequate attempt to meet them. It were devoutly to be wished 
that some scholar of sufficient courage and learning would rend the 
veil, and light up the darkness beyond. The archives of the Science of 
Language are at this moment like a magnificent collection of stuffed 
animals and carefully-preserved beetles, most of them indeed roughly 
classified and ticketed. "We contemplate them with no little enthusiasm, 
we have numbered the hairs on the heads of many of the larger 
mammals, have gathered the dust from the wings of the butterflies ; 
but if you ask us whence they came, or question us as to their life, 
their growth, and death, we cannot tell. Like the learned ancients who 
beheld the flies in amber, " we wonder how the devil they got there " ; 
in fact, our philosophy of origins is that of Topsy. In the meantime 
philologists must watch and pray for the coming of their Darwin and 
their Weismann. 

Corpus Christi College, Oxford. 

4 — XAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 83. 

Animal Symmetry. 
By A. T. Masteeman, B.A, D.Sc, F.R.S.E. 

The least attention to the subject of the symmetry of organisms will 
serve to convince one that the present state of our knowledge, or, to 
speak more accurately, our present method of expressing the facts, is 
far from satisfactory. In most modern text-books professing to deal 
with animal morphology the subject is either left severely alone or is 
dismissed with a few remarks upon so-called " radial " and " bilateral " 
symmetry, illustrated by one or two well-known examples. Thus 
Hatschek 1 divides the Metazoa into Protaxonia and Heteraxonia, relyiug 
mainly upon the position of the blastopore ; and if we go further back 
we find that the heterogeneous group Eadiata owed its name to the 
emphasis of a particular prevalent form of symmetry. 2 Standard works 
upon botany devote more attention to this branch of morphology, as 
must needs be the case when the structure of flowering -plants is 

As to a correct definition of the term " symmetry," when applied 
to organisms, there appears to be a considerable divergence of opinion. 
Thus, many botanists regard the symmetry of a flower as meaning the 
similarity of its constituent parts about one or more axes or planes, the 
term polysymmetrical being, from this point of view, regarded as 
equivalent to " actinomorphic," or, in other words, symmetry about a 
median axis, whereas " zygomorphic " implies a symmetry about a plane. 
Sachs draws distinctions between monosymmetry and polysymmetry 
on the one hand, and between bilateral and multilateral symmetry on 
the other, pointing out that the former are special cases of the latter. 
His term " monosymmetrical " alone corresponds to bilateral symmetry 
as usually accepted amongst zoologists. Geddes, in his suggestive 
article on " Morphology," 3 remarks in this connection that " botanists 
since Schleiden " have contented " themselves with thro wins: organisms 
into three groups- — first, absolute or regular; second, regular and 
radiate; third, symmetrical bilaterally or zygomorphic. . . . Burmeister, 
and more fully Bronn, introduced the fundamental improvement of 

1 "Lehrbuch der Zoologie." 2 Cuvier, " Regne animal." 

3 Geddes, P., "Encyclopaedia Britannica," 1885, p. 843. 


January 1899] ANIMAL SYMMETRY 51 

defining the mathematical forms they sought not by the surfaces but 
by axes and their poles." 

By certain French and English botanists the terms " symmetry," 
"symmetrical," and "asymmetrical" have been employed in a very 
different connection, namely, to express the numerical correspondence 
or otherwise between the constituent elements of concentric whorls. 

A definition which would include all these ideas would have to 
express merely a vague order of some kind, involving repetition, as 
existing between the parts of an organ or organism. 

The term is used commonly amongst zoologists in a sense resembling 
the wider usage amongst botanists. Thus the acknowledged distinction 
of radially and bilaterally symmetrical organisms rests upon this inter- 
pretation of the term symmetry. But the so-called " zonal symmetry " 
instituted a fresh conception of the term " symmetry," which, if accepted, 
would again require a vague definition. In the former case we deal 
with the definite arrangement of the parts of an organism about a 
median geometrical centre; in the latter is introduced the idea of 
a serial repetition of certain parts along an axis, thus leading to 
a confusion between the terms " segmentation " and " symmetry." 
Haeckel 1 has recognised this distinction by applying the term " antimere " 
to the unit of so-called " radial " symmetry, and " metamere " to the 
segment or " zoonite." 

Gedcles 2 clearly shows how the study of symmetry implies the 
attempt to force mathematical or mechanical conceptions upon the 
organic world, and indicates that the attempts of Moseley and Goodsir in 
this direction were based upon many analogies which, " savouring more 
of the IVatwyhilosophie than of sober mathematics, could only serve to 
discourage further inquiry and interest." 

The analogy drawn from time to time between the organism and 
a crystal and the parallel between Haeckel's " promorphology " and 
crystallography have an underlying basis of truth, but they are liable 
to be misconstrued if carried too far. The material basis of vital 
phenomena, namely protoplasm, is essentially amorphous (or truly 
asymmetric, see later) as regards any properties inherent in itself; and 
the form assumed by any mass of it, constituting for the time being an 
individual, must depend entirely upon the particular environment at 
that time. In highly differentiated individuals the exact extent of the 
direct effect of environmental changes is a disputed question, but by 
whatever particular path the process may be effected it may be taken 
as a truism that an organism tends to change its form in relation to 
changes of environment, and that while in the lower types the change 
is effected many times in the history of the individual, in the higher 
types it is with equal certainty effected in the history of the species. 
These considerations do not apply to the crystal. 

On the other hand, the crystal and the organism are each isolated 

1 Haeckel, " Generelle Morphologie, " Berlin, 1866. 2 Loc. cit. 

52 A. T. MASTERMAN [januaey 

masses of matter, and hence have similar stereometric relationships. 
Here the analogy ends. 

Haeckel's classification of animal symmetry has not received the 
amount of recognition it deserves from zoologists, partly because 
it is encumbered with a copious and somewhat unwieldy nomen- 
clature. Jaeger's text-book of zoology may be noted as one of the 
very few which give anything like an adequate discussion of the 

The other classic work dealing with the subject is Spencer's 
" Principles of Biology " (vol. ii. chaps, vi. and xiv.), which appeared at 
about the same time as Haeckel's work. It is difficult to understand 
why his classification of symmetry has not been more widely adopted, 
though it is regrettable that a classification equally applicable to 
both plants and animals, if anything rather more to the latter, should 
be more or less hidden in a chapter on the Morphological Differentiation 
of Plants. His classification, differing little from that proposed below, 
is followed by a characteristic attempt to show the inter-relation 
between the symmetry of an organism and its environment. Though 
written over thirty years ago, there is scarcely a sentence that does 
not apply with equal force at the present time. His three types 
of spherical, radial, and bilateral symmetry are equivalent to the 
centro-symmetry, axo-symmetry, and piano-symmetry, the first three 
types instituted below. The justification for alteration in the nomen- 
clature will be there stated. 

Amongst smaller works we may mention the essays of Dr. Amans, 1 
dealing with the form of animals exhibiting aquatic locomotion. He 
follows up the " ovoid " form from the sphere through circular, 
elliptical, unisymmetrical, and asymmetrical ovoids, the bilaterally 
symmetrical ovoid being correlated with the highest form of locomo- 
tion. He thus recognises the great importance, previously pointed 
out by Spencer, of the form of locomotion in determining the form 
of symmetry. 

Haeckel, twenty years after his former work (in 1887), returned 
to the question of animal symmetry in his " Eadiolaria." 2 He points 
out that text-books such as those of Claus and Sachs give an 
insufficient treatment of the subject, and whilst recognising the 
difficulty of the nomenclature, he adheres to the principles formerly 
stated. He here gives four principal types of ground-forms which 
correspond to those of Spencer; and the first three are very nearly 
equivalent to the three types proposed below, with centres composed 
of a point, a straight line, and a plane respectively. His main sub- 
divisions, the Homaxonia and Polyaxonia in the first group, and 
Monaxonia and Stauraxonia in the second group, do not appear to me 
to differ sufficiently in kind nor in degree to warrant the subdivisions, 

1 Comptes Rcnchis, cv. 1887, and Ann. Sci. Nat. vi. 
2 Challenger Report, vol. xviii. 


as the sphere and the circle are usually treated geometrically as 
a polyhedron and a polygon respectively, but with an infinite number 
of bounding sides. Other differences will be noticed by a detailed 

In comparing the various meanings attached to the term "symmetry" 
the only really consistent definition must be somewhat as follows : — 
Symmetry of an organism is the system of arrangement of its constituent 
parts in relation to each other and to a certain geometrical centre, which 
may be called the centre or nucleus of symmetry. 

Animal symmetry is therefore merely a particular character of 
form, and as such it must be in the same direct relation to environ- 
ment as any other morphological character. In order to illustrate this 
relation to its greatest extent one must adopt a classification of symmetry 
which will bear direct comparison with the different grades of environ- 
ment. Only in so far as it enables us to correlate form and environment 
can a classification be regarded as " natural," just as a classification of 
species can be regarded as " natural " only when it expresses the true 
history of the changes of correlated form and environment, or the course 
of evolution, in the genus or family. 

Our conceptions of space being based upon the three dimensions, we 
naturally turn to the geometrical conceptions and their classification in 
order to find a "natural" classification. In the inter-relation of 
organism and environment and its determining influence, we find 
that the three dimensional axes correspond to the lines of develop- 
ment, and hence they are never inclined to each other. In other 
words, we find no true " clinometric " forms, and we have only to 
deal with the " orthometric." The stereometrical representatives of 
the types will, therefore, all belong to the "right" series, and to this 
extent there is a marked difference from the types of crystallography. 

Scattered throughout modern zoological literature we may find 
statements that " radial " symmetry is correlated with or induced by 
a sedentary or pelagic habitat, and others to the contrary, the latter 
mainly relying upon the fact that there are, at the present state 
of evolution, some sedentary or drifting organisms which show 
little if any " radial " symmetry. It should not be necessary to 
furnish proof that the symmetry of an organism tends to conform 
to the symmetry of environment. Assuming this statement, it is 
necessary to seek for a classification of environmental as a preliminary 
to that of organismal symmetry. 

The widest division of symmetry of environment must depend upon 
the three dimensions, and this consideration leads us to the following 
divisions of animal form : — 

1. Centro-symmetry. — This consists essentially of repetition of parts 
in three dimensions, hence the centre of symmetry is a point, the point 
of intersection of the three dimensional axes (Fig. 1). The minimum 
number of secondary centres of symmetry will be four, and the 


54 A. T. MASTER MAN [ January 

predominant number will be six, corresponding to twice the number 
of dimensions. The geometrical representatives of these two conditions 

are the tetrahedron and the octahedron respec- 
tively, and the other possible numbers are re- 
presented by the cube, dodecahedron, and the 
,--'' icosahedron. An absence of secondary centres 

'. a, results in the sphere, hence the term " spherical 

symmetry," as used by Spencer. All truly centro- 

symmetric organisms should conform to the types 

of the regular polyhedron or the sphere, but are 

A " not necessarily confined to the latter. This type 

" [6 A °j" symme ry " agrees also with the centro-stigma or sphaero- 

typic group of Haeckel. 

The organisms exhibiting this form of symmetry consist of a great 

number of Protozoa, such as the Heliozoa, and a large proportion of 

the Eadiolaria and Eeticularia. In addition to these, we may include 

certain of the Flagellata, as Uroglena, Syncrypta and Pandorina, and 

Acinetaria. A great number of the Protozoa also assume this form of 

symmetry as a transitory phase in their life -history (encystment). 

Apart from adult organisms, the great majority of the eggs of higher 

types conform more or less closely to this type, as also do the so-called 

blastula larva of the Metazoa, and the gemmules of Porifera, e.g. 


We thus notice that the animal organisms which exhibit centro- 
symmetry are confined to the adult phases of the Protozoa and to 
the early ontogenetic phases of many higher Metazoa. It is evident 
that, with the form and constitution of the earth as it is at present, 
it is impossible to conceive of an environment in itself which is 
centro-symmetric, that is, symmetrical round a point. The fact that 
organisms dwell upon the surface of a sphere (oblate spheroid, to 
be more accurate), causes a constant heterogeneity in one dimension 
which, through the physical factors of gravity, and in most cases light, 
will be a constant factor in the induction of a certain amount of 
heterogeneity in organisms. Hence, in the attempt to correlate structure 
and environment, the existence of centro-symmetric organisms would 
appear to be a difficulty. This, however, is only apparent, for the 
effect of environment upon the organism is dependent not only upon 
the environment, but upon the manner in which the organism, so to 
speak, allows itself to be subjected to it. Thus Spencer points 
out that centro-symmetric organisms are usually free to rotate 
about their centre, either actively or passively, thus eliminating the 
effect of axo-symmetry in the environment. 

Again, if the organism be for a time removed from the influence of 
its environment by the formation of a coat, a cyst, or a shell, the influ- 
ence being reduced to zero in all directions, the centro-symmetric form 
will be assumed. 


Thus we may connect the occurrence and origin of centro- 
symmetry in organisms with two special conditions of existence : — 
Firstly, the free rotation, active or passive, of an organism about a 
central point ; secondly, the free encysted or encased condition in which 
the living matter is more or less removed from the influence of its 
environment. The spherical form implies homogeneity, whereas the 
polyhedral types imply heterogeneity, as limited by certain definite 
numbers of secondary centres of symmetry. 

Haeckel, taking the geometrical types of the sphere and the regular 
polyhedra as enumerated above, shows how each type is represented 
by certain of the Eadiolaria. A similar classification could probably 
be effected in each group of the Protozoa, though perhaps not quite so 

The experiments of Quincke, Butschli, and others with emulsion 
" foams," and of Roux with oil-drops, tend to emphasise the great 
importance of the physical environment in determining the mor- 
phology of the asymmetric and centro-symmetric Protozoa, and the 
early ontogenetic stages of Metazoa respectively. 

2. Axo-symmetry. — This consists essentially of repetition of parts 
in two dimensions, and hence the centre of symmetry is formed by 
the third dimension, which is the axis of symmetry. 

The minimum number of secondary centres of symmetry is reduced 
to three, and the dominant number will be four, corresponding to twice 
the number of the like dimensions. Above this the number is 
practically unlimited, as represented geometrically, from an equilateral 
triangle and a square through any regular polygon to the circle. 

This type of symmetry is called " radial " by Spencer, but the term 
has been applied generally to include both this type and the preceding, 
as according to the meaning it might. On the other hand, if 
"spherical" symmetry is retained for the preceding, the equivalent 
term for " axo-symmetry " would be " circular symmetry." Haeckel 
classed this type with the next as Protaxonia, whilst Hatschek limits 
this term to the present type. Haeckel's later term is Centraxonia. 
Haeckel's types do not exactly correspond to axo-symmetry, for he 
includes those forms in which the two transverse axes differ from each 
other, whilst these are here included in the Piano-symmetric. 

There are two conceivable types of axo-symmetry, namely, true 
or mon-axo-symmetry, and di-axo-symmetry (see Figs. 2 and 3). 

In true axo-symmetry there is heterogeneity between the two 
poles of the dimension of symmetry ; in di-axo-symmetry they are 

True axo-symmetry is geometrically represented by a right regular 
pyramid and cone, di-polar by a right regular prism and cylinder. 

The di-axo-symmetry is a rare phenomenon, mainly because 
axo-symmetric animals have their dimensional axis perpendicular, and 
hence this axis is subjected to the perpetual heterogeneity of environ- 







Fig. 2. — I)i-axo-symmetry. 
(4 A + 2 B.) 

merit already referred to. The conditions for the acquirement of 
di-axo-symmetry are a horizontal position of the main axis of the 

organism with free rotation about this axis. 

Certain Eadiolaria, such as the Acantharia, 
^a. according to Haeckel, present this ground-form, 

and the Amphistomina, certain of the Ciliata, 
—A, and to some extent the Thaliacea, may serve as 

further examples. 

True axo-symmetry is exhibited by a great 

number of animals, besides nearly all the plant 

kingdom. It is found in many of the Protozoa. 

It is the fundamental type of all the Porifera, 

Coelentera, and Echinoderma. Traces of it are 
found in the Polyzoa, Cirripedia, sedentary Annelida, and Tunicata. 
The Cuvierian group of Eadiata depended 
mainly for its institution upon the presence of 
this type of symmetry. We have only to add 
that, in the ontogeny of many of the above, 
and in that of higher Metazoa, this type is A 
represented by the gastrula. 

A study of the above phyla will show that 
this axo - symmetry occurs in precisely the 
environmental conditions in which, from a 
theoretical point of view, we should expect to 
find it. They fall into three groups : — 






Fig. 3. — Axo-symmetry. 
(4 a + b + b'.) 

1. Sedentary. 

2. Pelagic floating (plankton in restricted sense). 


Free pelagic with axial rotation. 

(1) Sedentary. — It is usually granted that axo-symmetry is 
correlated with a sedentary existence. This statement is in no way 
invalidated by the instances of Cirripedia and others in which a very 
evident bilateral symmetry is still in evidence. That the " cirri " of 
Balanus tend to present an axial arrangement is readily seen by an 
examination of the living animal from above ; and that the shells and, 
again, the stalk of L&pas are axo-symmetric in their arrangement is 

The modification from one type of symmetry to another will be 
proportional in completeness to the time during which the new environ- 
ment has been effective, and, in addition, to the degree of differentia- 
tion to which the organism has already attained. Thus, Amoeba will 
adapt its form almost immediately to a change of environment, a 
Coelenterate more slowly, and a Cirripede more slowly still. 

If an axis be drawn from the point of fixation of a sedentary 
organism at right angles to the plane of fixation, the environment on 
all sides of this axis will be similar (except in special cases, e.g. 


currents of the medium) whilst the two ends of the axis will have 
dissimilar environments. This axis corresponds to the axis of 
symmetry of the axo-symmetric animals which are sedentary. 

(2) Pelagic plankton. — If a perpendicular axis be drawn downwards 
from the surface of the medium of notation, the environment on all 
sides of this axis will be similar whereas its two ends will be very 
dissimilar. Hence a floating (drifting) organism will have an axis 
parallel to the above and with similar properties. According to the 
principles of correlation, we find that the drifting plankton 
(Medusae, Arcella, Pyrosoma, etc.) are axo-symmetric about an axis 
which is at right angles to the surface. It may be noted that move- 
ment along this axis, i.e. the axis of symmetry, does not in any way 
affect the conditions of symmetry (Medusae, Ctenophora). It is quite 
irrelevant to the argument that Medusae may be descended from 
sedentary forms. They are axo-symmetric and pelagic drifters, 
agreeing thereby with an enormous number of other forms. 

(3) Free-swimming with axial rotation. — If an organism move in 
one definite direction there is an evident dissimilarity in environmental 
conditions between the two terminal points of the axis of direction. If 
this direction correspond with the axis perpendicular to the surface it does 
not affect the axo-symmetry, for it only accentuates a dissimilarity which 
already existed, but if it be at any angle to the perpendicular there will be 
produced two axes of dissimilarity, and unless other factors intervene an 
axo-symmetric organism will be out of harmony with such conditions. 
If, however, the organism rotates about its axis of locomotion, the dis- 
similarity due to the physical conditions will be nullified, and the parts 
on all sides of the axis of direction will, in response to the similar 
environment, tend to become symmetrical, so that the axis of locomotive 
direction will be converted into the axis of symmetry and the organism 
will become axially symmetric. 

Those who have observed the locomotion of gastrula-larvae speak 
of a spiral motion due to a movement forward along the main axis, 
combined with a rotation about the same. It is also quite possible 
that in many of the more active members of the pelagic plankton, in 
which the locomotion often brings the axis of symmetry at an angle 
with the perpendicular to the surface, a free capacity for axial rotation 
tends to perpetuate the axial symmetry. 

In brief, the axo-symmetric organisms occur principally in the 
Protozoa, Porifera, Coelentera, and Echinoderma, and they are typically 
pelagic drifters, sedentary forms, or free-swimmers which rotate about 
the axis of locomotion, all of which habitats correspond to the 
theoretical conditions. In a great number of the axo-symmetric 
Coelentera there are two phases in the life -history (medusoid and 
hydroid) corresponding to the two principal conditions of existence in 
this type of symmetry, i.e. drifting and sedentary. 

3. Piano -symmetry (Heteraxonia of some morphologists). — This 

58 A. T. MASTERMAN [january 

type, corresponding almost exactly with the " bilateral symmetry," 
is repetition of parts in only one dimension, so that the centre of 
symmetry is a plane formed by the two remaining dimensional axes. 
In this case the minimum number of secondary centres of symmetry is 
reduced to two, and, as there is but one dimension of symmetry, this 
corresponds to the predominating number. 

Piano-symmetry occurs in a few of the Protozoa and Coelentera, 
and is found almost universally in the Metazoa above the Coelentera, 
though it may be more or less disguised in certain groups {e.g. Echino- 
derma, Tunicata), by a secondary superposed axo-symmetry. The 
environmental conditions for the production of this form of symmetry 
are not many. A primary physical environment fulfilling the desired 
conditions is not common nor easy of attainment. Locomotion of the 
organism in a definite direction, but forming some angle with the 
perpendicular to the surface or to the bottom, will supply the requisite 
dissimilarities of environment in two dimensions, provided that rotation 
about the locomotive axis be prevented. In other words, the motion 
is limited to one dimension, which, for the greatest effect, should be 
horizontal. Nevertheless, although this is the prevalent origin of 
piano-symmetry, a physical environment of an organism at rest is con- 
ceivable in which the necessary conditions are fulfilled. Thus fixation 
at one end will cause, as already shown, axo-symmetry if the axis is 
parallel with the perpendicular to the plane of fixation, but if they 
intersect at an angle, a factor of dissimilarity is produced, which, like 
the last, will be more potent the greater the angle. Examples of this 
type without locomotion- in one direction are rare, but are probably 
exemplified in Taenia, Loxosoma, etc. In some text-books it is stated 
that " bilateral " symmetry is confined to animals with locomotion in 
one direction, but, as pointed out here, the necessary conditions are 
attained in a sedentary habit. 

There are three possible sub-types of piano-symmetry, which are 
defined according to the heterogeneity in the dimensional axes. The 
first or tri-plano-symmetry (Fig. 4) has all three axes formed of similar 
component radii ; and hence three planes of symmetry are present, 
intersecting each axis respectively. The geometrical expression of this 
type is the right rhombic prism or octahedron. It is included by 
Haeckel in a sub-group of his Centraxonia. Di-plano-symmetry 
(Fig. 5) has two planes of symmetry, as the radii of one axis differ. It 
is represented by the right rhombic pyramid. Piano-symmetry (or 
monoplano-symmetry) has only one plane of symmetry (Fig. 6) as the 
radii of two axes differ, and hence the plane of symmetry must pass 
through these two. It is represented by the right pyramid with a 
rhomboidal base. Spencer distinguishes these three as single, double, 
and triple bilateral symmetry (Figs. 4, 5, and 6). 

The true piano-symmetry is by far the commonest, though instances 
of the others can be easily found. The typical Hexactinia, taking into 




account the siphonoglyphs and mesenterial muscles, give a good example 
of di-plano-symmetry, whilst tri-plano-symmetry is found in certain 
Acantharia (Haeckel), and more or less perfectly i n some of the 

There are several points to notice with regard to these three types 
of symmetry. These bear out our argument that they represent a 
natural classification. 

Firstly, it has been already shown that a great number of the 
organisms which in other respects take their position at the bottom of 






■A A: 







Fig. 4. — Tri-plano-symmetry. 
(2a + 2b + 2c.) 

Fig. 5. — Di-plano-symmetry. 
(2a + b + b' + 2c.) 


Fig. 6. — Piano-symmetry. 
(2a + b + b' + c + c'.) 

the animal scale belong either to no type of symmetry whatever or 
exhibit at one stage of their career a centro-symmetry (see Fig. 9). 

Again, others of the Protozoa and almost all of the Coelentera, 
together with other groups showing degeneration, exhibit the second or 
axo-symmetry ; and lastly, the great majority of the Metazoa exhibit 
the third or piano-symmetry more and more .markedly as the highest 
types are reached. 

This classification, therefore, clearly indicates the phyletic progress 
in course of time from forms with no symmetry and ever-changing 
shape, through symmetry in all dimensions, to that in two, and finally, 
the successive types of symmetry. 

In this connection we may look at the increasing influence of 
locomotion in the determination of an animal's symmetry. The 
locomotion in centro-symmetric forms is quite indefinite, with freedom 
to rotate about the centre and nothing more. That of axo-symmetric 
forms is in a definite direction in a considerable number, but may be 
in many cases entirely absent (sedentary). At most it is definite in 
only one dimension. In piano-symmetric forms the vast majority have 
definite locomotion, with a definite direction, in two dimensions. The 
gradual development of symmetry from a lower to a higher type 
is therefore in agreement with the general facts of evolution (see 
Fig. 7). Similarly in ontogeny the same history is recapitulated. With 
exceptions mainly traceable to secondary coenogenetic modifications, the 
ontogeny of a piano-symmetric organism commences with the centro- 
symmetric egg, which in the most primitive forms retains its centro- 
symmetry up to the free swimming centro-symmetric blastula-larva. The 




presence of yolk may, in certain cases, enable the embryo to, as it were, 
take a short cut to axo-symmetry (unequal segmentation), otherwise 
the blastula in due course becomes the gastrula, a typical axo- 
symmetric organism, with locomotion in one direction and rotation 
about the axis so defined. Whilst the lower forms (Coelentera) remain at 
this stage, the higher pass on to the type of piano-symmetry, and thus 
the phyletic history is repeated (Fig. 7). 

Eeference has been made above to the secondary centres of symmetry 
and the predominant number of these in the three types of symmetry 
was stated to be six, four, and two respectively. Any organs in an 
organism must be centric or peripheral. If they are in the former 














./— s 






=> s 




*-z => 


>- cc 

> t±) 

CO > 


co «s: 

o s 

3 o 



o — ' 









Fig. 7. — Diagram to indicate the relative predominance of each main type of symmetry in 
the chief divisions of the animal kingdom, and the gradual advance of type botli in 
phylogeny and ontogeny. 

category and conform to the symmetry of the organism, they must be 
single, and must be conformable to the centre of symmetry, whether a 
point, an axis, or a plane. If they are peripheral they must, in order 
to conform to the symmetry of the whole organism, be repeated a 
certain number of times round secondary centres of symmetry, and the 
primary numbers corresponding in each case to twice the number of 
symmetrical dimensions, work out as six, four, and two. 

This subject is intimately connected with the theory of "metameric 
segmentation " and its attendant phenomenon and will be more fully 
dealt with later. 

4. Stereo- Symmetry. — We have discussed in turn the three forms of 
symmetry, and the question remains — Is there not yet another ? Our de- 
finition of the symmetry of an organism reads as follows : — The system 
of arrangement of its constituent parts in relation to each other and to a 


certain geometrical centre. In the former three systems the units were 
arranged with respect to (1) a point, (2) a straight line, (3) a plane. Each 
of these two last geometrical expressions is formed by the motion of the 
former, thus conferring upon the centre of symmetry an additional dimen- 
sion, and lastly, the motion of the third centre of symmetry, or the plane, 
results in a centre of symmetry of three dimensions. In the same way, in 
centro-symmetry we found that organs with secondary centres were re- 
peated in three dimensions (6), those in axo-symmetry in two dimensions 
(4), and those in piano-symmetry were repeated in one dimension (2). 
Similarly in this last type (stereo-symmetry), as 
the centre of symmetry is tri-dimensional, the 
organs will not be repeated at all (Fig. 8). This y C.' 

is evidently an entirely different condition from 

asymmetry, in which there is no " system of a. ? 

arrangement of the parts " found in the amorphic 
Protozoa and others (Fig. 9). c ■'' 

In the first three forms of symmetry one 
can notice how the organism, by its gradual B - 

differentiation, becomes as it were the deter- F f-j ^7^71^7' 

(A + A+B + B+C + C.) 

mining factor in its relations to the environment. 

Thus it is mainly the mode of locomotion which is adopted (or the 
introduction of voluntary movement) that results in the production of 
a piano-symmetric organism, and in a precisely analogous manner in 
stereo -symmetry the organism becomes more independent and pre- 
dominant over its own fate in determining the way in which its 
environment shall affect it. 

The gradual evolution in the animal kingdom results in a graduated 
succession of organisms becoming more and more independent of their 
environment, in so far as that environment has power to mould the 
organismal form into harmony with itself. 

In the preceding cases the organisms exhibiting those types of 
symmetry are to that extent in equilibrium with the same type of 
environment, and in asymmetry the organism rapidly changes its form 
to adapt itself to a change of environment, but in a stereo-symmetric form 
the organism has so far brought itself to be partially equilibrated to 
any change of environment without actual change in general form on 
its own part, that it may be said practically to have released itself from 
its environmental thraldom, as far as symmetry is concerned. Hence its 
organs will never be repeated in cases where the pair are not absolutely 
inter-dependent (e.g. the paired eyes), and the form of the organism will be 
determined solely by the inter-relations of its parts. This ideal is not as 
yet reached in the animal kingdom, for all the piano-symmetric animals 
still show marked traces of their " paired " condition. On the other 
hand, stereo-symmetry is continually being evolved in them by a division 
of labour between the two " paired " elements, so that in the highest 
types the " bilateral" or paired arrangement is to some extent effaced. 

62 A. T. MASTERMAN [januaey 

Perhaps the most recent example of this type, in the highest of 
animals, is the universal tendency to right or left-handedness in man. 

This fourth type of symmetry must be carefully distinguished from 
the cases of peculiar arrangement of parts due to the superposition of 
one type of symmetry upon another, or even of one type upon itself 
but in a different relation to the organism. Thus, in the majority of 
the Echinoderma the " plane " type has probably been impressed upon 
the " axial " of the Coelentera, only to be in its turn " covered " by the 
axial type of the sedentary period. Lastly, some species, such as 
Spatangus, have early traces of a " plane " type again superposed upon 
the " axial," and a further reversion to the " axial " is found in Pclago- 
thuria. Again, in the Pleuronectida? the so-called asymmetry is 
evidently due to a second piano-symmetry superposed upon the first, 
with the two planes of symmetry perpendicular to each other. In all 
these cases the transition will involve an apparent asymmetry or stereo- 

The four types of symmetry and their sub-types may be shown dia- 
grammatically as in Pigs. 1-6, and Pig. 8, in which each of the three dimen- 
sional axes is indicated, 
' z: y^ J*- and their resemblances 

/ \) A - / 3-") A ' / >^ C * / ^1 ^ or differences are shown 

^_\/ /- V /^ \l by letters. The increas- 

A. a. A. A. D. • heterogeneity as the 

Fig. 10. Fig. 11. Fig. 12. °. o J 

various types are passed 

Fig. 9. — Centro-symmetry. (4a.) ] . A 

Fig. 10.— Axo-symnietry. (3a + b.) through IS shown clearly 

Fig. 11.— Piano-symmetry. (2a + b + c.) by t j ie f ormu l ae below 

Fig. 12.— Stereo-symmetry, (a + b + c + d.) j 

the figures. Again, 11 a 
regular tetrahedron be taken instead of an octagon, because it is the 
simplest possible solid figure, then the four main types of symmetry 
are indicated as in Pigs. 9-12, whilst in this case the sub-types can 
only be shown by a reference to the planes of symmetry of a tetra- 
hedron, into which it is not necessary to enter. 

The term " asymmetry " should be strictly confined to the absence 
of all definite " arrangement," and in this sense it has been used by 

The " asymmetry " of the chemists and physicists is, however, 
exactly analogous to stereo-symmetry as here defined, and both pheno- 
mena are alike due to the highest possible " arrangement " of the mass 
in each case. Pasteur's conclusions with regard to the intimate con- 
nection of molecular stereo-symmetry and organic phenomena have been 
recently brought forward with renewed emphasis by Professor Japp. 1 
The ascertained fact that the molecular stereo-symmetry is a characteristic 
feature of " organised " matter, pointed out by him, is interesting in 
view of the fact that the evolution of symmetry in the animal kingdom 
indicates a gradual transference of stereo-symmetry from the molecule 

1 President's Address, Chemical Section, British Association, Bristol 189S. 

A. A 

Fig. 9. 


to the entire individual, although the latter end of the series has not 
yet been completely attained. There is also this parallel, that in the 
formation of the stereo-symmetric individual only one " form " is evolved, 
just as occurs in vital molecular phenomena in contradistinction to 
purely chemical. 

Thus we do not find any human body with a liver on the left side, 
with stomach and spleen on the right, a right aortic arch and a left 
azygos vein, and so on, though it would be hard for an anatomist to 
pronounce that such an enantiomorph of the human subject is an 
impossibility, and harder still to say why such is not in existence. 

Could an experimental morphologist immensely hasten the processes 
of evolution there should be no difficulty in subjecting any given 
organism to a special environment, and, by the inter-action of the two, 
producing an organism exhibiting any of the three types of centro-, axo- 
or piano-symmetry. By having recourse to a special environment 
(separation of the blastomeres) he may even to some extent produce 
stereo-symmetric organisms, but in equal quantities of right and left- 
sided individuals, unless one enantiomorph is destroyed purposely in the 
making. By no process could he produce a single stereo-symmetric 
" form " without its enantiomorph, because the origin of such lies in the 
molecular constitution of the organism and has no connection with the 

Though not expressed in chemical language, the analogy of the 
above to molecular stereo-symmetry is complete. 

The asymmetric lowest type of organism changes its form continu- 
ally and is the " sport " of its environment ; the centro-symmetric, 
axo-symmetric, and piano-symmetric form gradations in which the 
organism becomes more definite and permanent in shape, as it becomes 
less dependent on its environment and more voluntary in its actions. 
Lastly, a purely stereo-symmetric organism (with a stereo-symmetric 
ontogeny), the possible product of future evolution, will have so far 
freed itself from the effect of its environment that changes in the 
latter will no more affect its morphological plan (complete heterogeneity). 
The homogeneity of structure will then have passed from the three 
dimensions of space to the so-called " fourth dimension " of time. 

The study of animal symmetry points to no conclusion more clearly 
than the future development and predominance of the stereo-symmetric 
individual, in which the fundamental stereo-symmetry of the physical 
unit has extended itself to the morphological stereo-symmetry of the 

The University, 

St. Andrews. 


A New Amoeba in Man. J. Ijima. — -"On a new Rhizopod Parasite of 
Man — Amoeba miuria, n. sp." (Annot. Zool. Japon. ii. (1898), pp. 85-94). This 
parasite was found in abundance in the serous fluid-accumulation of the peri- 
toneal and pleural cavities in a case of peritonitis and pleuritis endotheliomatosa, 
but probably had its headquarters in the tumour tissue. Its nearest allies seem 
to be A. viltosa, Wallich, and A. fiuida, Gruber. 

-<0 "Qy "v^y 

Respiratory Trees of Holothuroids. L. Bordas. — " Anatomie et 
fonctions physiologiques des organes arborescents ou poumons aquatiques de 
quelques Holothuries " (C. R. Ac. Sci. cxxvii. (1898), pp. 568-570). At the 
marine laboratory of Endoume (Marseille), Bordas made a number of observations 
and experiments on Holothuria impatiens, Gmelin, H. Poll, Delle Chiaje, H. 
tubulosa, Gmelin, and Stichopus regalis, Selenka, and succeeded in showing that 
the arborescent organs, which develop as diverticula of the gut, have at least 
four important functions. They are respiratory, as most zoologists have recog- 
nised ; they have a hydrostatic function when the body expands ; they produce 
numerous amoebocytes ; and they are excretory, as is shown by the presence of 
uric acid and urates. _ _ _ 

'\> '>0' / >o* 

Mud from Jerusalem. E. Atkinson. — " Extraordinary Vitality of Ento- 
mostraca in Mud from Jerusalem" (Ann. Nat. Hist. ii. (1898), pp. 372-376). 
Forty years ago Mr. Atkinson took some samples of mud from the ancient pool 
of Gihon, outside the Jaffa Gate of Jerusalem, which at that time contained 
water during only two months of the year. The dry mud was sent to England 
and moistened, with the result that six new species of living Entomostraca were 
detected by Dr. Baird. For eight years in succession, at the Leeds Philosophical 
Society's Museum, the mud was dried up in summer and moistened again in 
spring, and its tenants still persisted. In one case a small sample was left dry 
in a pill box for nine years, and then moistened, with the result that in a fort- 
night a single specimen of Estheria gihoni made its appearance. In another 
case, the alternation of drought and moisture was kept up artificially for twenty- 
four years, with unvarying success as regarded persistence of vitality. 

"v> /< vi>' /< v> 

Grafting Insects. Henry E. Crampton, Jun. — " An Important instance of 
Insect Coalescence" (Ann. New York Ac. Sci. xi. (1898), pp. 219-223). In about 
twenty cases out of nearly two hundred experiments, Mr. Crampton succeeded 
in effecting a grafting or coalescence of lepidopterous pupae, similar to that 
obtained by Born with the embryos of Amphibia. He has proceeded to inquire 
whether in such coalescence the colours of one moth could be made to replace 
those of another by a transfusion of haemolymph. In a series of over 750 
experiments one case of exceptional interest occurred. A pupa of Callosamia 
promethea was united "in tandem " anteriorly to a pupa of Samia cecropia, the 


1899] FRESH FACTS 65 

two being kept together by means of melted paraffine applied to the edge of the 
common wound. The result, as regards coloration, was that while the cecropia 
exhibited, as far as could be determined, the normal specific colours, portions of 
the promethea wings presented the colours characteristic of only the wings of 
cecropia. <^ <^ <^ 

Mosquitoes and Malaria. B. Grassi. — " La malaria propagata per mezzo 
•di peculiari insetti " (Atti R. Accad. Lincei (Rend.) vii. (1898) pp. 234-240). 
Prof. Grassi has published a second preliminary note in support of his important 
theory that various "mosquitoes" (Anopheles claviger, Cidex penicillaris, and 
■Cidex malariae) are agents in spreading malaria. He takes account of other 
workers who have suggested this. 

•<0 -Q> "s^y 

Pearl-Making. Louis Boutan. — " Production artificielle des perles chez 
les Haliotis"(C. R. Ac. Sci. cxxvii. (1898) pp. 828-830). By "trepanning" 
the shell and introducing minute spherules of nacre, Boutan was able to induce 
the formation of "really fine pearls," which cannot be called false. 

<^> *^ *o 

Pigmentation of the Mussel. Victor Faussek. — " Ueber die Ablagerung 
des Pigmentes bei Mytilus" (Z. wiss. Zool. lxv. (1898) pp. 112-142). A 
number of experiments show that the formation and deposition of pigment in 
the mantle, gills, and other parts of the common mussel is not at all affected by 
alterations in the light, but is in part regulated by the variable degree of 
•exposure to oxygenated water, taken in connection with the distribution of the 
blood-vessels. „ _ _ 

-^y ^>- 'Qy 

Kespiration of the Lamprey. E. Couvreur. — " Etude sur la respiration 
•des poissons. Mecanisme respiratoire chez les Cyclostomes " (Arm. Soc. Linn. 
Lyon, xliv. (1898) pp. 105-109, 2 figs.) In the young lamprey, in the 
Ammocoete stage, the respiratory movements occur about eighty times a minute, 
mounting up to a hundred during excitement, but are occasionally sus- 
pended for a considerable period. During inspiration the lingual piston is 
projected, the body-walls expand, the spiracula (external apertures) are opened 
'by the relaxation of the sphincters, and the oscula (apertures into the respira- 
tory tube) are opened by the forward movement of the piston. The water 
rthen enters the branchial sacs by the spiracles and oscula simultaneously. 
During expiration the piston retracts, the spiracles are slightly open, the oscula 
;are closed. The water then passes out by the spiracula. When the lamprey 
is fixed by its mouth it expires and inspires only by the spiracula, as Dumeril 
observed long ago. Couvreur adds the interesting note that the retraction of 
the piston corresponds to the systole, and its projection to the diastole of the 


"0> *^ "C^. 

Syncytia in Development. W. His. — " Ueber Zellen- und Syncytien- 
bildung. Studien am Salmonidenkeim " (Abh. K. Sachs. Ges. Wiss. xxiv. (1898) 
pp. 401-468, 41 figs.) In this important and beautifully illustrated paper, Prof. 
His discusses syncytia, i.e. "complexes of mutually connected histological units 
or plasmochores, which are distinctly separated from one another by limiting 
areas or diastemas." Their primary origin is from incomplete processes of 
division, but they may also arise secondarily by the marginal coalescence of 
previously distinct cells. Both types occur abundantly in the blastoderms of 
fishes. The paper ends with the weighty statement that syncytia and pluri- 
polar nuclear divisions, and giant -nuclei or syncaryoses, are associated 
phenomena, always implying the occurrence of intense plasmic activity and 
favourable nutritive conditions. 

5 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 83. 

66 FRESH FACTS [ JA >\ 1899 

One in the Eye. Frank Finn. — "Note on the Long-Snouted Whip-Snake" 
{Dryophis mycterizans) {J. Asiat. Soc. Bengal, lxvii. (1898) pp. 66-67). Mr. 
Finn had two of these (harmless ?) snakes in his hands, and was holding them 
gently, when the larger one, which had previously struck at his hand, made a 
sudden dart at his eye. As he instinctively closed the threatened organ, the 
snake only succeeded in making two small bites on the upper eyelid and one on 
the lower. It left one of its teeth, rather over ■£$ inch in length, but this proved 
not to be a grooved one. No inconvenience was felt. Mr. Finn thus unexpect- 
edly verified what is a common belief in India that the whip-snake strikes 
deliberately at the eye, an interesting trait which, as the author notes, is not 
alluded to by either Dr. Giinther or Mr. Boulenger in their accounts of the 
Indian Reptilia. ^ ^ _ 

A Problem of Sex. R. W. Shufeldt. — -"On the Alternation of Sex in a 
Brood of Young Sparrow-Hawks " (Amer. Nat. xxxii. (1898) pp. 567-570, 1 fig.) 
In a brood of Falco sparverius Dr. Shufeldt found that the oldest of the five 
was a male, the next a female, and so on in regular alternation. He inquires, 
whether the alternation is the rule, and, if so, what the correct interpretation 
of it can be. _ _ ^ 

The Kangaroo's Vocal Cords. Johnson Symington. — "The Marsupial 
Larynx " (Journ. Anat. Physiol, xxxiii. (1898) pp. 31-49, 8 figs.) From among 
the many interesting facts stated in this paper we select one — that the 
vocal cords of pouch specimens of Macropms bennettii are well developed, while 
the adult vocal cord must be regarded as a degenerated structure. " This is 
interesting in connection with the well-known fact that these animals are voiceless, 
and it suggests the theory that they are descended from a stock which 
possessed a voice." 



De Danske Barkbiller (Scolytidae et Platypodidae Danicae). By E. A. 
L0VENDAL. 4to, pp. xii. + 212 with figs, and 5 pis. Copenhagen, 1898. 

From the earliest period of modern natural history research the Bark-beetles 
have attracted much attention. Their importance as widespread destroyers of 
trees (rarely of other plants, as in the case of Xyleborus morigerus, an exotic 
species now only too common among Dendrobiums in European hot-houses), 
and the singularity of their burrows in bark or wood have given rise to a 
literature, beginning with the last century tracts on the " Wurmtrockniss " or 
destruction inflicted on conifers by various species of Ips (Tgmicus), which is of 
surprising extent, and with which, concealed as much of it is in obscure period- 
icals on Forestry, etc., it is difficult to obtain a competent acquaintance. For 
all but historical purposes, however, it may be said to begin with Batzeburg's 
" Forst-Insekten," a work which laid the foundation for the scientific study of 
forest entomology. 

With entomologists not concerned with economic work the study of this- 
family has not proved popular, and it is only in the last thirty years or so that 
anything has been known about extra-European species. This is not surprising, 
for the insects are small and obscure, and often so alike in appearance, that 
they cannot be satisfactorily determined except after prolonged study, not only 
of the simpler external features, but of the mouth-parts, antennae, and legs, a 
task requiring much tedious and exacting microscopical work. 

They are nevertheless well deserving of study by every one who is prepared! 
not to measure the importance of systematic work by the showiness of the 
collections on which he is engaged. Accurate determination is the first necessity 
in the case of many economic problems presented by these beetles ; indeed,, 
without it divers of them are incapable of solution. And even if the European 
species present no great variety of structure, the exotic forms sometimes exhibit 
a singularity that is scarcely exceeded by any family of Coleoptera. 

The habits of the ordinary bark-burrowing Scolytids are peculiar among 
beetles ; still more strange are those of the wood-borers, who, though they tunnel, 
do not feed on wood but on fungus growths, which, as Habbard has lately 
shown, are artificially propagated by the insects themselves. 

In Xyleborus, one of the best known of the wood-boring and " ambrosia- 
feeding " genera, the males are sub-apterous, dwarfed, and often of bizarre form 
(in X. morigerus the male is relatively so minute that it might be mistaken 
for an insect of a different genus or even family from the female). Moreover, 
they are very much the rarer sex, their numbers varying from one in four to 
one in fifty, or thereabouts ; the species are therefore polygamous, and must 
in most cases inbreed, a fact which does not prevent the genus from being one 
of the richest and most widely-distributed of the Scolytidae. 


68 SOME NE IV BOOKS [january 

One other peculiarity of the family may be selected for mention. In about 
a half of it, certain deviations from the normal type of structure, such as great 
antennal development, excavation of the forehead or its decoration with hair- 
tufts, are, so far as is known, diagnostic of the males ; in the other half pre- 
cisely similar characters when present occur in the females. The line of demar- 
cation between these halves appears to be arbitrary, and this counter-change of 
sexual characters in different portions of the same family has given rise to some 
little confusion, and is not the least interesting of the many biological problems 
provided by the Bark-beetles. 

To the late Wilhelm Eichhoff, more than to any one else, is due the present 
state of our knowledge of these insects. By profession a forester, he supple- 
mented his necessary familiarity with their economy by careful systematic 
study, and was the first to make a thorough investigation of their oral and 
antennal structure, and, together with Chapuis, to compile really competent 
descriptions of exotic species. Eichhoff's Ratio, cfcc, Tomirinorum, published 
in 1879, is a model of accurate diagnosis, and it is surprising with what ease 
and certainty the species of the very difficult Tomicinaj are to be identified 

Two years later Eichhoff published " Die Europjiischen Borkenkiifer," an 
account written on less technical lines of the habits, economy, and characters 
of the European species, and indispensable to the worker at forest entomology. 

In the handsome quarto before us Mr. Lflvendal, of the Copenhagen Museum, 
has done on a more extensive scale for the bark-beetles of Denmark what 
Eichhoff did for those of Europe ; and we can but regret that the utility of the 
book is restricted by the comparatively little known language in which it is 
entirely written. Mr. L0vendal has aimed at exhaustiveness of treatment both 
in his descriptions of the insects, at least so far as their external characters are 
concerned (for he does not follow Lindeman of Moscow far in that writer's 
elaborate and not very productive researches on internal anatomy), and in his 
accounts of their life-histories and economic relations. So far as we can judge, 
he has fully succeeded ; and the labour devoted to the book may be estimated 
by the fact that the list of works cited numbers close on two hundred, in which 
we have not detected any important omission. 

The book, like that of Eichhoff, is furnished with full, perhaps even unduly 
elaborate, tables of generic and specific characters, and for identification of the 
species by means of their galleries and the kinds of tree attacked. In its plan 
it closely follows its predecessor, so that those who know that useful work 
will know what to expect here, though they will probably be surprised at the 
scale on which it is earned out. 

Not its least valuable part is the full information given as to distribution 
both within and without Denmark, the author having consulted all papers 
throwing any light on this subject. We notice however, that, though he 
records the existence of X. saxeseni, Batz., in North America, he, like most 
European entomologists, is unaware that it was first described there, and should 
bear the name of X. xylographus, Say. 

The number of species recorded from Denmark is fifty-one ; this is about 
equal to the number in the British Isles, about a dozen species in each fauna 
not being found in the other. It is likely that further research will increase 
the number known from Denmark, as several species not recorded by L0vendal 
may be expected to occur there. One species only is peculiar, Ips elongatus, 
Liav. ; this has been treated by Beitter as synonymous with Ips austriacus, 
WachtL, an identification which Ltfvendal does not accept. 

The text is illustrated with numerous pictures of burrows in bark and wood, 
partly original, and partly copies. The galleries of several species are, we 
believe, illustrated for the first time. 

But perhaps the most striking feature of the whole work is that of the five 
plates, drawn and engraved by the author in a manner now rarely to be seen in 


entomological works, but familiar to those who know Lflvendal's plates to his 
countryman Schitfdte's " De Metamorphosi Eleutheratorum." No more beauti- 
ful or accurate illustrations of these insects, so hard to delineate successfully, 
have ever been made, and they alone entitle the book to distinction. 

To write a discriminating notice of a work in a language that one can read 
but slowly and laboriously is impossible. But, so far as we have been able to 
form an opinion, we cannot say less than that we regard this work as one of 
the most thorough and perfect faunistic monographs it has ever been our good 
fortune to examine. It furnishes the Danish entomologist with everything he 
can require to know on these interesting and important little beetles. It may 
be added that its publication has been rendered possible by a State subsidy 
from the Carlsberg Fund. W. F. H. Blandford. 


An Elementary Text-Book of Botany. By Sydney H. Vines, M.A., D.Sc, 
F.R.S. 8vo, pp. xv. and 611, with 397 illustrations. Sonnenschein 
and Co., London, 1898. Price 9s. 

Those of us who remember the old " Prantl and Vines " which, fifteen years 
ago, was perhaps the most generally used elementary text-book in medical 
schools and colleges, will scarcely recognise any resemblance to it in the present 
volume. This is not a new edition of the old translation from the German of 
Prantl, but a new text-book brought almost as nearly up to date as is possible 
for an elementary work. It vividly recalls the Students' Text-Book of 1894-95, 
and is, so to say, a carefully edited abridgment of the latter. Difficult and 
debatable topics have been omitted, the more fundamental recent discoveries 
have been incorporated, and there has also been some rearrangement of the 
subject matter. The result is a diminution in bulk by one quarter, and a pre- 
sentation of the elementary facts of botany in so complete a manner as to place 
the Students' Text-Book at 16s. in the position merely of an edition de luxe. 
In fact, the author has created the necessity for the more advanced and larger 
edition of the latter which he contemplates in his preface, and which we shall 
hope to review at no very distant period. 

As Natural Science has already noticed at some length the Students' Text- 
Book (see vol. iv. p. 376, and vol. vi. p. 424), and the present work is on the 
same lines, it will be sufficient to note here the main points of difference between 
the two. Modern tendency is to bring as nearly together as possible the stories 
of form and function. Van Tieghem, in his most recent text-book on Botany, 
has incorporated them in one section, and discusses seriatim the morphology 
and physiology of the various plant-members. This mode of treatment, though 
doubtless the most scientific, has many disadvantages. Professor Vines does not 
attempt it, but we are glad to see that the section on Physiology is brought from 
the end of the book, and follows that on Morphology and Histology. These 
first three parts, dealing respectively -with general form, anatomy and histology, 
and physiology, leave little to be desired. The confusion over the Stelar theory, 
which has bothered so many students in the larger work, is here avoided, doubt- 
ful points relating to the minute structure of the cell are omitted, and a tangible 
physical explanation is given of the ascent of the sap, based on the recent work 
of Messrs. Dixon and Joly. In Part IV. (Classification) we are a little disap- 
pointed to find no revision of the sub-classes Algae and Fungi, and in Group II., 
Bryophyta, we should like to have seen a fuller description of at least one 
typical thalloid and foliose member of the class Hepaticae. 

In the treatment of the Seed-plants, account is taken of the recent discovery 
of motile male cells in the Cycads and Conifers, and two distinct groups, each 
comparable with Bryophyta or Pteridophyta, are now recognised under the 
old class-names Gymnospermae and Angiospermae. The general introduction to 

7 o SOME NEW BOOKS [january 

these groups is excellent, but the arrangement of the sub-classes and cohorts of 
the Monocotyledons and Dicotyledons is open to criticism. The author has 
" thought it desirable to follow, in the main, the classification laid down in the 
Genera Plantar ■um of Bentham and Hooker," one of the classics of Systematic 
Botany, but a work which occupied half a lifetime, and was completed fifteen 
years ago. As in Morphology and Physiology, so in the study of the affinities 
of the families of seed-plants, much has been done in the interval, and some 
expression of this should find place in an elementary text-book. 


Lehrbuch der gesammten wissenschaftlichen Genealogie. Stammbaum und 
Ahnentafel in ihrer geschichtlichen, sociologischen nnd naturwissen- 
schaftlichen Bedeutung. By Dr. Ottokar Lorenz, Professor der 
Geschichte. 8vo, pp. ix. and 489. Berlin: Hertz, 1898. 

More than a hundred years ago, as Dr. Lorenz tells us, Gatterer of Gottingen 
wrote a text-book of genealogy for the use of his students. And, strangely 
enough, this old book has remained until now the only systematic treatise on 
the subject. It was high time that there should be a new " Gatterer," and 
this our author has supplied, to the gratification of a wide circle of students, 
whether of history, or heraldry, or heredity. Dr. Lorenz discusses "genealogy 
as a science," "the theory of the genealogical tree," "tables of ancestry," and 
" the bearing of genealogical studies on heredity." He deals very judiciously with 
modern theories of heredity, inclining on the whole to agree with Weismann ; 
and makes a strong case for the advantage of genealogical studies to supplement 
those which are purely statistical. In our judgment he does not fully appreciate 
the importance of Mr. Galton's work, especially as regards " the law of ancestral 
inheritance." X. 


Aids in Practical Geology. By Grenville A. J. Cole. Third edition. 
8vo, pp. xvi. and 432, with coloured frontispiece and numerous illus- 
trations. London: C. Griffin and Co., 1898. Price 10s. 6d. 

Good wine needs no bush, and Professor Cole's excellent adjunct to the 
text-book and the laboratory, having now reached its third edition, requires 
little further commendation from us. The first edition was published in 
December 1890; the second in April 1893. The present edition is enlarged by 
several pages, and is revised throughout. New inventions of apparatus 
are introduced in the text, and the more recent literature referred to in 
the footnotes. A good deal of improvement and extension is visible in 
the palaeontological part, which is better than most English text-books of 
equal size. Nevertheless we are not sure that we understand the reason 
for this section. It would not really be of much use in the field ; and it is 
certainly not a guide to laboratory practice or to original investigation. Still we 
have little fault to find with it, except that the true scale of the various figures 
is not indicated. On the whole we should recommend Professor Cole to reduce 
those portions of his book that cover ground which is, or ought to be, covered 
by the ordinary text-book, and to amplify the strictly practical chapters, which 
already are admirable. 

Dr. John Anderson has completed his researches on the Beptilia and 
Batrachia of Egypt, and the results form volume one of the Zoology of Egypt, 
which has just been announced by Bernard Quaritch. Only 100 copies 
have been printed, and the price is £12 : 12s., which is quite prohibitive. Some 
1500 specimens were collected, the greater part of which are now in the British 

1899] SERIALS 71 

Students of the Foraminifera will be glad to learn that the Societe de 
Naturalistes de Kieiv (Kieff), Russia, have decided to publish a continuation of 
Sherborn's Bibliography of the Foraminifera, from 1888-98. The compilation 
has been undertaken by Dr. Paul Tutkovski, whose work on the "Russian 
tertiary and cretaceous Foraminifera is well known, and who has been in frequent 
communication with Mr. Sherborn and other workers. We may therefore look 
forward to a full and complete additional list which will be of much service and 

The fifth year of the Bibliography and Index of North American Geology, 
Palaeontology, Petrology, and Mineralogy, that for 1897, has just appeared. It 
forms the 156th Bulletin of the United States Geological Survey and is compiled 
by Fred Broughton Weeks. There are 742 separate titles which are placed in 
alphabetical order under authors, and these titles are analysed in 40 pages of 
index. The whole forms a compact and handy Bibliography in an inexpensive 
and practically useful form. 

Science Progress : a Monthly Review of current Scientific Investigation, 
changed some time ago into a quarterly, and now, to the considerable loss of 
its writers and readers, disappears from the scene. Instead, there enters 
Science Work : a Monthly Review of Scientific Literature, published by Robert 
Aikman and Company, Manchester, and edited by Waller Jeffs. This is to 
afford a practical guide to publications in the English language on all branches 
of natural and social science. The subscription is three shillings a year ; if 
prepaid, half-a-crown, post free. It will doubtless prove useful to those who 
wish to know what is appearing in the magazines. May we express a hope 
that our next fellow-worker in this held will choose a title less reminiscent of 
Natural Science : a Monthly Review of Scientific Progress ? 

Mr. Wilfrid Mark Webb has given up the editorship of the Journal of 
Malacology, as well as his position under the Essex County Council, and has 
removed from Brentwood to 2 The Broadway, Hammersmith. He is tem- 
porarily engaged on work at the museum of Eton College. The Journal of 
Malacology passes again into the hands of Mr. W. E. Collinge and also becomes 
in part the organ of the Midland Malacological Society, which was founded on 
July 7, 1898, with Mr. Collinge as president, and Mr. H. Howard Bloomer 
as secretary. The first number of vol. vii. of the Journal was issued on 
December 2. It contains " Descriptions of a New Species of Cryptosoma (C. 
austeni)," by W. E. Collinge ; a reprint of the description, with figures, of 
"Species of Plectopylis recently described in Science Gossi])," which does not 
give the dates of the original publication, an unfortunate omission considering the 
vagaries that have from time to time affected the issue of our estimable contem- 
porary. The Bibliography of current Malacological literature is now restricted 
" to books and papers sent in by their respective authors, and those of special 
interest in the current magazines, etc." There is much virtue in an "etc." 

We have received Volume xi. of the Memorias y Revista de la Sociedad 
Cientifica Antonio Alzate, including a new theory of respiration, by Prof. 
A. L. Herrera and Dr. D. Vergara Lope ; a description of the volcanoes 
Colima and Ceboruco, by E. Ordonez ; a case of pulmonary tuberculosis 
cured by the action of rarefied air, by D. Vergara Lope; Metamorphoses 
of Papilio daunus and note on the staminal dimorphism of Solarium cornutum, 
with a plate, by L. G. Seurat ; seismic observations made at Orizaba in 
1895, by C. Mottl ; albinism in the squirrel, with plate, by A. Duges ; the 
origin of individuals : the construction of the organism through internal 
conditions, by A. L. Herrera ; seismic study of Central and South America, 
by F. de Montessus de Ballore. 

Mr. F. H. Perry-Coste publishes in the December number of Nature Notes 
an interesting account of Philip Miller, " Gardener to the Worshipful Company 

72 SOME NEW BOOKS [jan. 1899 

of Apothecaries at their Botanical Garden at Chelsea, and F.R.S.," and of his 
views on the circulation and nature of sap, as published in the second edition 
of his "Gardener's Dictionary," 1733. 

The Society Carlos Eibeiro at Porto, Portugal, has changed the title of its 
organ from Revista de Sciencias Naturaes e Sociaes to Portugalia: Materiaes para 
o Estudo do Povo Portuguez. It will be devoted entirely to the anthropology and 
ethnography of the Portuguese race. 

Vestnik slovanshych starozytnosti means " Review of Works on Slavonic Anti- 
quities," and is a journal of which the first part has just been published at 
Prague, under the editorship of Prof. L. Niederle ; most of the reviews are in 
French and German. 

Mr. G. W. Bulman contributes to the December number of the Westminster 
Review a criticism of the late Professor G. H. T. Eimer's theory of organic 

The American Anthropologist is to be succeeded by a new Journal, in 
quarterly numbers of about 200 octavo pages, published by G. P. Putnam's 
Sons, and conducted by the following editorial board : — F. Baker, F. Boas, 
D. G. Brinton, G. M. Dawson, G. A. Dorsey, W. H. Holmes, J. W. Powell, 
F. W. Putnam, with F. W. Hodge as secretary and managing editor. The 
first number is to appear in January. The annual subscription is $4. 

No. 137 of vol. xviii. of Johns Hopkins University Circulars is devoted to 
"Notes from the Biological Laboratory," edited by Prof. W. K. Brooks, and 
"Notes from the Geological Laboratory," edited by Prof. W. B. Clark. The 
contents include the following papers : — " Some Ectosarcal Phenomena in the 
Eggs of Hydra" by E. A. Andrews, dealing with filose and amoeboid activities. 
"The Echinoids and Asteroids of Jamaica," a systematic list, with general 
notes, by H. L. Clark ; no new species are described, but if Ave are to judge from 
the mode of printing the names, all the species are referred to genera other than 
those in which they were placed by the original describers. " Embryology of 
Ophiocoma echinata, Agassiz," by C. Grave ; the abundance of apparently normal 
larvae having two anterior coelomic sacs, each communicating with the exterior 
by a dorsal pore-canal, is a point of much interest. "Notes on the 
Ophiurids collected in Jamaica during June and July 1897," by C. Grave; 
this resembles Dr. Clark's list, but all the species appear to be left in 
their original genera. E. W. Berger abstracts the late " Dr. F. S. Conant's 
[MS.] Notes on the Physiology of the Medusae." L. E. Griffin publishes 
" Notes on the Tentacles of Nautilus pompilius" preliminary to a complete 
account of the anatomy of the nautilus. The chief article in the geological 
section is entitled "An Episode during the Terrace Cutting of the Potomac," 
by Cleveland Abbe, jun. The price of this number is 10 cents, post free. 

A Catalogue and price-list of the papers of the late Professor Edward D. 
Cope, arranged chronologically, also price-list of Plaster Casts, has been sent to 
us by Mrs. E. D. Cope, Haverford, Pa., U.S.A. The papers are to be had for 
very moderate prices, and the complete set costs seventy-five dollars. The casts 
may be ordered white, or carefully coloured after the originals. 

The list of papers is a useful bibliography, but it is naturally far from 
complete, and it is marred by an excessive number of reprints. A writer so 
voluminous as Cope, making his important contributions to knowledge in a 
multitude of small scattered papers and notes, deserves a special bibliography 
prepared by an expert. We commend the suggestion to the notice of the 
Smithsonian Institution, which has already issued several valuable bibliographies 
of this kind. 


Born 1813; Died 26th June 1898. 

The Hon. William Guybon Atherstone, M.D., F.R.C.S., F.G.S., and Hon. Vice- 
President of the Geological Society of South Africa, died in the 85th year of 
his age, at his residence in Beaufort Street, Grahamstown. Cape Colony. In 
1839, after settling in medical practice at Grahamstown, Dr. Atherstone met 
Staff-Surgeon Jameson, who was studying local geology, and he became in- 
terested in the science. A year or two afterwards Mr. A. G. Bain brought his 
wonderful reptilian fossils to Grahamstown, and Dr. Atherstone took up the 
subject earnestly. Bain states, in a lecture at that city in 1856 (reprinted in 
the Trans. Geo/. Soc. S. Africa, vol. ii. part 5, 1897, p. 66) — "He said he was 
now determined to study geology, and should begin forthwith ; and well has he 
kept his word, for I never met with one who made such astonishing progress in 
such a short time. From that day an intimacy began between us, which soon 
ripened into a friendship which, I trust, may never cease while we live." He 
goes on to say — " My friend Bochards [of Fort Beaufort] and myself had now 
added to our ranks the transcendent talents of Dr. Atherstone, wdiich soon 
imbued our minds with elevated ideas, and gave fresh vigour and stimulus to 
our pursuits." 

Grahamstown also supplied, in Mr. W. Ogilvie, another friendly sympathiser 
for Mr. Bain ; and indeed this city has been termed the birthplace of South 
African geology ; for the hearty recognition given to Mr. Bain's geological 
researches by the Geological Society of London stimulated others to collect 
fossils and examine sections throughout the country. Thus one geological 
society was started at Grahamstown by Dr. Atherstone, and one at Graaf- 
Reynet by Dr. R. N. Rubidge (afterwards of Port Elizabeth). For many 
years, both in the prime of life and in old age, when afflicted with blindness, Dr. 
Atherstone not only willingly, but enthusiastically, gave all the help he could 
to the establishment and well-being of the Albany Natural History Museum 
and the Public Gardens in Grahamstown. 

Soon after their first meeting, Atherstone joined Bain in a geological visit to 
the Gamtoos, Bushman, Sunday, and Zwartkop Rivers, where Jurassic and Tertiary 
fossils were found in plenty. Interesting notes of the journey appeared in the 
Eastern Province Monthly Magazine, and the fossils have been described in 
the Transactions and Journal Geo/. Soc. London. Further, a systematic account 
of the Uitenhage series of strata and their fossils in the district traversed by 
the above-mentioned rivers was published in the Quart. Journ. Geo/. Soc. vol. 
xxiii. (1867), pages 149-171. He became a Fellow of the Geological Society 
of London in 1864. 

Atherstone and Rubidge visited Namaqualand to examine the copper- 
bearing rocks, and reported on them in 1857. The Kasonga and the Alum Caves 
in the Eastern Province were also visited by Atherstone in or about 1858. In 


74 OBITUARIES [january 

1875 he came to England, having been officially requested to gather information 
about lunatic asylums, in view of the erection of a new one in the Colony. 

With reference to his many presentations of good reptilian fossils to the 
British Museum, a well -deserved tribute of praise has been given to Dr. 
Atherstone by Sir Richard Owen in his Descript. and Illustr. Catal. Foss. 
Reptilia S. Africa, 1876, p. vi., where he says: "It will be seen how largely 
Science and the British Museum are indebted to W. Guybon Atherstone, Esq., 
M.D., who has devoted the leisure of a long and successful medical practice at 
the Cape to the study and acquisition of evidences of the palaeontology of that 
part of the globe." 

Through Dr. Atherstone's intelligent interest, in response to those who knew 
him as a geologist, the accidental occurrence of the now historic diamond at 
De Kalk, in the Hopetown Division of the Cape Colony, was brought to light 
in 18G7. He was the first to determine its characters as a real diamond. 
Fully recognising the importance to the Colony of such a discovery, he sug- 
gested that it should be sent to the Paris Exhibition, and the Governor of the 
Colony secured it by purchase. The enormous wealth accruing to South Africa 
from this fortunate application of mineralogical knowledge and common sense 
is now too well known to be further dwelt upon. 

In 1871, when he made his first visit to diamond fields, he noticed that 
Jagersfontein was being deserted by the diggers. He assured them it would be 
a good mine ; and, when it was again worked eight years afterwards, it 
proved to be very productive. He also indicated the diamantiferous neck at 
" De Beer's New Rush," afterwards called Cole.sberg Kopje, and ultimately 
Kimberley. Subsequently, after he had become a Member of the Cape Parlia- 
ment, he again visited the diamond mines — that of Kimberley in particular, 
with its deep shafts and numerous galleries ; and he contributed many interest- 
ing notes to the local publications on the possible origin of the diamonds, and 
the causes of the disastrous " mud-rushes " deep clown in the mine, as well as 
on some of the physical phenomena of the surface. 

In the meantime he had visited the Gouph and the reported gold-bearing 
rocks of that and other localities, as far as Lydenberg, everywhere bringing 
his long experience and mature judgment to bear upon geological difficulties 
with more or less advantage. Dr. Atherstone took a warm interest in estab- 
lishing the Geological Society of South Africa at Johannesburg in 1895 ; and 
he was elected an Hon. Vice-President at their first meeting. 

We may well regard our old friend as one of those prominent geological 
worthies who have given their best energies to the elucidation of South African 
geology and to the benefit of their fellow-men. T. R. J. 


Born 1812; Died 24th November 1898. 

The last of the brilliant band of Professors who, under the Chancellorship 
of Lord Brougham, the Rectorship of Mr. Gladstone, and the Principalship of 
Sir David Brewster, a galaxy of talent unrivalled, made the scientific and 
medical sides of the great Scottish University everywhere known and esteemed, 
— the cultured and refined George James All man passed away on the 24th 
November, at the age of 86. He was born in Cork, and spent his school days 
in Belfast ; and his original intention was to study for the Irish Bar. But the 
natural bent of his mind was towards botany and zoology, and he graduated in 
Arts and Medicine in the University of Dublin in 1844. His earlier papers 
were partly botanical, and this led to his appointment (1844) as Regius 
Professor of Botany in the University in which he had studied. He also at 
this time gave much attention to the fresh-water Polyzoa, though there is con- 
siderable variety in his first fifty papers. Amongst the memoirs which his 


fertile pen produced at the time, was that on the Anatomy and Physiology of 
C ordylophora, in which he gave an indication of his masterly treatment of the 
Tubularian Hydroids. When the somewhat sudden and lamented death of 
Edward Forbes took place, in the midst of his enthusiastic labours in his new sphere 
of action in the University of Edinburgh — surrounded as he was by congenial 
colleagues, and with a great future before him, Dr. Allman had sufficient 
influence in 1885 to obtain the appointment, Though, at first, opinions as to 
the successor of the brilliant Forbes were divided, yet Allman, by the publica- 
tion of his volume on the Fresh-Water Polyzoa (Ray Society, 1856), a model 
of its kind in text and illustrations, at once gained support and disarmed 
criticism. His genial and courteous bearing, and the elocpience he displayed 
in his lecture-room, made his courses on Natural History exceedingly 
popular, and he, besides, occasionally conducted dredging excursions on 
Saturdays in the Forth with his students, a steam vessel being hired at Leith 
for this purpose. He was ever ready to explain and instruct as the dredge or otter- 
trawl came up, and many a young student of the "fifties" must retain pleasant 
memories of these delightful expeditions. Nor were his sympathies — with those 
who retired from active service as the trawl settled into action — more likely to be 
forgotten. Moreover, he devoted a short part of the next lecture to the most 
instructive forms met with in the excursion, illustrating his remarks by sketches 
on the blackboard. No professor, indeed, was more welcomed by the student of 
the day, and many still recall his once familiar figure as he hastened — not much 
before time — from Manor Place through the Grassmarket to the high class 
room in the Old University. Besides his University and more purely zoological 
work, he took much interest in the Scottish Fisheries, and was appointed a 
Commissioner to inquire into various subjects connected with the department. 
One of them was the investigation, along with Prof. Lyon Playfair, of the 
spawning-ground of the herring at the " Old Hake," near Crail. While 
pursuing this inquiry, he hatched the eggs of the herring quite easily in a 
simple apparatus. He also took an active part in transferring the zoological 
collections of the Old University Museum (so dear to many an old student) 
to their new quarters in the Museum of Science and Art. At the meetings 
of the Royal Society in Edinburgh he worthily upheld the traditions of 
the chair of Walker, Jamieson, and Forbes, his wide and accurate zoological 
knowledge and his fluent and graceful style combining to render him as 
trenchant as agreeable. Not a few regretted Ins somewhat early retirement 
from a post in which he was so fitted to distinguish himself, but considerations 
of health compelled him to resign his chair in 1870. 

The comparative leisure which he enjoyed after his departure from Edin- 
burgh enabled him to devote his whole energies to his favourite studies, while 
also advancing the general interests of science by his able Presidency of the 
Linnean Society, and by his occupation of the Presidential Chair of the British 
Association at Sheffield in 1879. 

As a zoologist Prof. Allman brought to bear on his subject a cultured 
intellect, keen observation, philosophic spirit, and sound deduction, while his 
gifts in artistic delineation of the beautiful forms to which he specially devoted 
himself give his works a solidity and a charm all their own. These features, 
for instance, are prominent in his beautiful monograph of the Tubularian 
Hydroids for the Ray Society (1871-72), a work at once an honour to British 
zoology and an enduring monument to the talents and refined artistic touch of 
a master in the department. Marine zoology, indeed, has lost in him its fore- 
most investigator and its most dignified expounder in our country. Himself a 
graduate in medicine, he fully appreciated, as shown in his introductory lecture in 
Edinburgh, the brotherhood of zoology and medicine, a feature the late Univer- 
sities (Scotland) Commissioners have apparently misunderstood. 

Of a somewhat delicate constitution, he shrank from those combats in which 
men like Prof. Huxley flourish, but in general society there were few so genial 

76 OBITUARIES [januahy 

and kindly, so full of sparkling Irish hum our, and so refined and engaging in 
conversation. He was the last but one of the band of those older naturalists which 
included Edward Forbes, George Johnston, George Busk, W. Thompson, J. S. 
Bowerbank, J. Gwyn Jeffreys, P. Gosse, John and Harry Goodsir, Thos. Bell, 
Joshua Alder, Albany Hancock, Spence Bate, Thos. Hincks (still living), and 
others, who, by their genius and perseverance, have done so much to bring British 
marine zoology to its present position. Of all these none were closer friends 
than George Busk and James Allman, and they were worthy of each other. 

W. C. M'Intosh. 


Born February 11, 1823, at Dannenfels on Donnersberg in the 
Rheinpfalz; Died June 18, 1898, at Munich. 

After half a century of active work in all branches of geological science, this 
eminent naturalist has passed away at the age of 75. After receiving a school 
education at the Gymnasium in Zweibriicken, he studied the art and science of 
mining at Munich and Heidelberg, and in 1848 received his first appointment 
at the collieries of St. Ingbert. His first scientific paper, however, was on his 
native Donnersberg. In 1851 he was called to the direction of the Land-Survey 
at Munich, and in 1879 was made " Oberbergdirektor " of Bavaria. To this 
kingdom his chief energies were devoted, and he received the reward of nobility 
in 1882. In addition to his civil posts, Von Guembel was honorary professor 
at Munich University and teacher at the Technical College. 

The list of his scientific works is too large even for abstraction here. He is 
best known for his " Geognostiscbe Bescbreibung des Konigreichs Bayern," which 
was begun in 1861, and developed into the memoirs of the geological survey 
of Bavaria, His "Geologie von Bayern," 1884-93, served as a geological text-book 
for the students of that country, as well as a summary most useful to foreign 
geologists. In addition to writing papers on mineralogical and petrological 
subjects, he invented instruments of precision for crystallographic optics, and 
Von Kobell perpetuated the memory of his labours in this field by the mineral 
name " Guembelite." The name Guembelina, applied to a fossil dactylopore, 
further recalls Guembel's extensive researches on fossils of obscure lower 
organisms, and his numerous papers on the Foraminifera. 

The death was also announced early in December of William Colchester, 
formerly of Dovercourt, near Harwich, a well-known collector of Tertiary fossils. 
He it was who discovered the JIacactis eocaenus described by Owen in 1839, 
and now in the Ipswich Museum. This was afterwards shown to be Ilyra- 
cotherium. Didetyhis colchesteri was another important find of Mr. Colchester's, 
and came with the Macacus from the Eocene sands of Kyson, Essex. Mr. 
Colchester became a Fellow of the Geological Society of London in 1857, and 
was of advanced age at the time of his death, which occurred at his residence, 
Burwell, Cambridge. 

Dr. James Ingraham Peck, Assistant Professor of Biology in Williams 
College, and since 1896 Sub-Director of the Marine Biological Laboratory of 
Wood's Holl, Mass., LT.S.A., died suddenly on November 4. He was born at 
Seneca Castle, Oneida Co., N.Y., August 10, 1863, and studied at Williams 
College and Johns Hopkins University. He worked chiefly on the food of 
marine fishes, also on the pteropods and heteropods collected by the "Albatross." 
His loss is deeply felt by his American colleagues. 

The deaths have also been announced of : — On September 16, at St. Gallen, 
the Swiss Geographer, Prof. R. C. Amrheim, aged 53 ; the French Geographer, 
J. V. Barbier ; on July 28, the Peruvian Geographer, Luis Carranza, M.D. ; 
Dr. Hermann Endres, Privat-Docent in Anatomy at the University of Halle, 


on July 30, aged 32; on December 11, Sir William Jenner (b. 1815), who 
has been Her Majesty's physician for upwards of thirty years ; John W. 
Keely, of Keely Motor notoriety, in Philadelphia, on Nov. 18; Dr. Wilhelm 
Kochs, Docent in Physiology at Bonn-am-Rhein, on Oct. 1 5 ; Edmond 
Mollerat, Conchologist, at Saint Raphael, France; on December 24, 1897, 
in Thorshavn (Faeroe Islands), the ornithologist, Hans C. Muller, aged 79 ; 
Alexander Pilliet, Curator of the Anatomical Museum of the University of 
Paris (Musee Dupuytren) and a writer on morbid anatomy, on Nov. 2, at Paris, 
aged 38 ; George Vestal, Professor of Agriculture and Horticulture at the 
New Mexico Agricultural College, on Oct. 24, aged 41 ; Dr. David A. Wells, 
a writer on economics, and founder of The Annual of Scientific Discovery (1849- 
1886, Cambridge, Mass.), also author of a "First Principles of Geology." 



Sir, — The letter of " U " in Natural Science for October gives one very 
striking exception to the rule laid down in Natural Science for September, that 
" no level-headed person with any capacity for weighing evidence doubts that 
vaccination, efficiently performed, affords an almost absolute protection against 
small-pox for a term of five to ten years according to the natural susceptibility 
of the individual." May I be allowed to pillory a few more? 

Dr. William Gayton, giving evidence before the recent Vaccination Commis- 
sion, in answer to Question 1755, expressed the opinion that "primary vaccina- 
tion is a very fleeting protection indeed. As to the time that primary vaccina- 
tion lasts I do not know, but I think it is a very short time." 

Dr. R. A. Birdwood, whose experience of small-pox covers 12,000 cases, in 
answer to Question 31,191, stated that vaccination cannot be relied upon as an 
absolute protection up to any age whatever. 

In addition to those who are not anti-vaccinationists, be it noted there are 
no less than four M.D.'s on the general Committee of the Anti- Vaccination 
League, one of whom is Dr. Charles Creighton, author of the article 
''Vaccination" in the "Encyclopaedia Britannica " (9th eel.), "The Theory and 
Practice of Vacci no-Syphilis," and other works. 

Another is Dr. W. S. Tebb, whose recent work on "A Century of Vaccina- 
tion" is full of facts marshalled in a masterly manner. 

How many M.D.'s there may be as private members I have no means of 
knowing, but the recent addition of Dr. W. J. Collins, one of the Royal Com- 
missioners and a signatory of the minority report, was recently published, and 
very naturally made much of. 

Dr. Alfred Russel Wallace is another of those exceptions, every one of whom 
conscientiously objects in a greater or lesser degree to vaccination, and I for 
one hesitate to say that they do so " in strict proportion to " their " ignorance 
and inability to weigh evidence." 

I quite agree that " were the money necessary to secure compulsory vaccina- 
tion spent in a reasonable system of education of the masses as to the value of 
vaccination, it is possible that a larger percentage of vaccinations might be 
secured than under the present system," but it is very improbable. 

One good would accrue from such a course, viz. the impossibility of gaining 
entrance into a scientific magazine of high standing, such as Natural Science, of 
a sentence like this — " The recognition of the fact that vaccinia is merely attenuated 
small-pox — proved again and again — only brings vaccination into line with 
what we know of other protective inoculations." — Yours truly, E. G. B. 

[We have inserted the above from a sense of fair-play, but Natural Science 
is not the place for carrying on a discussion on the subject, and we must draw 
the line after alluding to two points : — (1) The duration of the protection 
afforded by primary vaccination is not to be settled by giving the opinion of 



Dr. This or Mr. That, but by a study of attack-rates and death-rates at 
different age periods in definite epidemics amongst vaccinated and unvaccinated 
respectively (see Statistics of Sheffield Outbreak, by Barry, and of Gloucester 
Outbreak, by Bond) ; (2) as regards the identity of variola and vaccinia, see 
Klein's experiments recorded in Medical Officer's Report to the Local Govern- 
ment Board for 1892-93.— Ed. Nat. Sc] 


In Novitates Zoologicae, v. p. 374, ff. (1898) I published an account of the 
structure of the antennae of butterflies as a first instalment of my " Contribu- 
tions to the Morphology of Lepidoptera." I am carrying out these researches 
on Lepidoptera in order to reach a basis of fact which will enable us to under- 
stand the various structures of the exoskeleton of Lepidoptera, and will thus 
also furnish a better basis for classification. As the number of species to be 
examined is so very great, oversights are likely to occur ; but I hoped that, by 
inviting criticism of my paper, such oversights would be corrected by others, 
and thus our knowledge of the morphology and relationship of Lepidoptera be 
advanced. Criticisms in which errors as to facts are pointed out, or in which 
it is shown where and why my conclusions are fallacious, will have my earnest 

Professor Grote, in the last issue of Natural Science, p. 440, does not give 
any reason why, in his opinion, the characters of the antennae are "valueless 
for taxonomy and phylogeny," and hence I have nothing to reply to this strange 

As regards Professor Grote's classification of Butterflies I merely say that it 
remains for Professor Grote to show that what he styles in Papilionidae vein ix. 
(absent from the other Butterflies, according to Grote) is not homologous of what 
he calls in the other Butterflies vein viii. (absent from Papilionidae, according to 
Grote). This fundamental question can be answered by a study of the develop- 
ment of the respective veins in the chrysalis. Karl Jordan. 

Zoological Museum, Thing, December 6, 1898. 

In reply to Mr. Quail's criticism (Natural Science, p. 395, December 1898) 
of my conclusions as to the position of the Papilionides, a criticism based upon 
his reading of the characters of Anosia, I take up these one after another. The 
"structural blotch A" on the cubitus of Anosia may or may not be homologous 
with the cross vein of the Papilionidae. It is a slight extension at the extreme 
base, and is more prominent in Heliconius, where it really assumes the aspect 
of the remnant of a cross vein between cubitus and vein vi. In both cases it is 
situated much nearer the base of the wing than in the Papilionidae. Mr. Quail 
is correct that I had overlooked it (I.e. p. 394). But its exact nature and mean- 
ing are unimportant to my classification. I do not base my separation of the 
Papilionides upon the presence of a cross vein between cubitus and vein vii., 
but upon the existence of vein ix. in the latter group. There is no trace of 
vein ix. in Anosia, indeed there is no room for it. Again, the homology of the 
" structural blotch " of Anosia, of the Limnads, and Heliconians with the cross 
vein of the Papilionides would favour my theory that this structure is a part of 
a former general system of cross veins of the lepidopterous wing, as explained 
in the Proc. Am. Phil. Society. A cross vein would then have run in the 
Lepidoptera generally between v. and vii., intersecting vi., which latter vein has 
faded out ; and thus the action by which the media has disappeared would have 
been repeated with variations in the region below the cubitus. The cross vein 
gradually fades out in the Papilionides themselves and is lost entirely in the 
higher forms, so I could not have placed any reliance upon its presence in the 
classification which I proposed. This, I think, disposes of objection "A." As 
to " B," the " rudimentary nervure," this is equivalent to my vein viii., and does 


not touch ix. ; with regard to " C," the position of vein i. in Anosia and the 
Limnads, I have especially alluded to this feature of the hind wings, and it 
again does not meet my point as to ix. of primaries. The main point I make, 
as against Scudder, Reuter, and others, is that they cannot logically interpolate 
Papilio with its vein ix. between the Blues and Skippers, as they attempt to do, 
because both these groups are without this vein ix., and, moreover, I have shown 
that the pattern of neuration of the two, thus violently separated, groups 
authorises the supposition that they are really related. The assumed dichotomy 
of the butterflies is another matter. It will be solved when we find vein ix., or 
when its traces are found in any other butterfly, of which neither Mr. Quail nor 
any one else has brought forward any evidence. I do not doubt that traces of 
vein ix. may be found in Lagoa or Megalopyge or Cossus ; these are all Tineides 
(Grote), and I look for the origin of the Papilionides in this group. My theory 
of the movement of the veins in the wings of the butterflies and Lepidoptera 
generally is based upon the discoveries of Spuler and Comstock that the media 
is three-branched and the cubitus two-branched, while the radius is primarily 
five-branched. Some seeming discrepancies between Mr. Quail's interesting 
paper and my own communications may arise from a different point of view in 
this respect. But these are all side issues and do not affect the main issue, 
which cannot be decided in Mr. Quail's favour, I think, until he produces 
evidence that the other great group of butterflies, the Hesperiades, possess, 
or indeed ever possessed, vein ix. of the primary wings. It will not do merely 
to say that they have lost it ; they may have sprung from an ancestry which 
had equally lost it, while the Papilionides must have sprung from an ancestry 
which had retained it. A. Radcliffe Grote. 

Roemer Museum, Hildesheim, December 5, 1898. 

[As our space for correspondence is very limited, this discussion cannot be 
prolonged here. — Ed. Nat. *S'c] 


Thanking you for the honour done me by the publication of my paper in 
your review (November and December 1898), I venture to ask you to append 
the following note : — 

Some vibrations of the neuroplasma might be explained by the osmotic 
currents of Butschli, increased by the heat afforded by oxidations. Remak has 
observed that the axis-band has a reticular structure. In that case the theory 
of carbon dioxide should be rejected, but it would be profitable to make new 
experiments with an artificial protoplasm, obtained by a combination of 
the microscopic foam of Butschli, which presents a physical analogy to the 
natural cytoplasm, and my own, which has a chemical analogy to the same, 
being formed by a mixture of the components of the plasmodium of Fuligo 
septicLm, according to Reinke's analysis. 

Perhaps the separation of the absorbed substances is effected by the 
partitions of the protoplasmic alveoli, and if that be true, the protoplasm itself 
might be compared to a gland, and even induced to grow (?) in a nutritive 
solution. In support of my position, I would refer to Dr. Loeb's address, the 
gist of which was published in Nat. Sci. xii. (1898) pp. 1-4G-1-48. May I also 
correct two errata in my paper ? 

Page 336, instead of "negative variation of carbon dioxide" read " negative 
variation of nerve." 

Instead of "Milne Edwards, I.e. vol. xiii. p. 5" read "Milne Edwards, I.e. 
vol. xiii. p. 58." A. L. Herrera. 



The following appointments have recently been made : — Dr. Cleveland 
Abbe, jun., to be professor of geology in Western Maryland College ; Drs. J. L. 
Ames, F. A. Woods, R. T. Atkinson, and F. R. Stubbs, to be assistants in the 
department of histology and embryology at Harvard Medical School, conse- 
quent on the resignations of Drs. H. P. Quincey and Elisha H. Gregory, jun. ; 
R. T. Baker, assistant-curator of the Technological Museum, Sydney, N.S.W., 
to be curator of that institution ; Dr. F. J. Becker of Prague to be professor of 
mineralogy at Vienna University ; Dr. Boehmig as professor extraordinarius of 
zoology at Graz, Austria ; Dr. A. Biihler to be privat-docent in anatomy at 
Wiirzburg ; Dr. Capitan to succeed Gabriel de Mortillet as professor of pre- 
historic anthropology at the School of Anthropology, Paris ; Dr. R. H. Chittenden 
to be director of the Sheffield Scientific School at Yale University, in succession 
to Prof. G. H. Brush resigned ; Dr. Friedrich Dahl to be assistant in the 
Zoological Museum, Berlin ; Dr. G. P. Eaton to be assistant in osteology in 
the Peabody Museum ; Dr. H. Eggeling to be privat-docent and assistant in 
anatomy at Strassburg University ; Dr. Marcus S. Farr to be curator of the 
zoological collection of the New York State Museum, Albany ; F. G. Hopkins, 
late demonstrator in physiology at Guy's Hospital, to the new lectureship in 
chemical physiology at Cambridge University ; Dr. Georg Karsten as professor 
extraordinarius of botany at Kiel University ; Gregorius A. Kogevnikov as 
privat-docent in zoology at Moscow University ; Dr. Fr. Kopsch as privat-docent 
in anatomy at Berlin University ; Dr. Kriechbaumer to be curator of the 
zoological collections at Munich ; Dr. W. Kulczycki as privat-docent in zoology 
at Lemberg University ; Dr. Ernst Mehnert of Strassburg to succeed the late 
Prof. Endres as privat-docent in anatomy at Halle University; Dr. Heinrich 
Monke of Breslau to the Geological Survey at Berlin ; Dr. Lubor Niederle to the 
newly-founded chair of Slavonic archaeology and ethnology at the Bohemian 
University, Prague ; C. Sauvageau as professor of botany to the Faculty of 
Sciences, Dijon ; Dr. Ernst Vanhoeffen to be assistant in the Zoological Institute 
at Kiel ; Swale Vincent to be Sharpey physiological scholar and chief assistant 
in the physiological laboratory at University College, London ; Dr. Franz 
Werner, well known for his work on " Coloration and Regeneration in Lizards," 
as privat-docent in zoology in Vienna University ; Dr. A. Zalevski, as privat- 
docent in botany at Lemberg University. 

Professor DArcy Thompson, C.B., of University College, Dundee, has been 
appointed scientific member of the Fishery Board for Scotland, vacant by the 
resignation of Sir John Murray. 

Prof. Ray Lankester has resigned the Linacre Professorship of Comparative 
Anatomy in the University of Oxford. The past students of Prof. W. F. R. 
Weldon, of University College, London, are signing a testimonial to their former 
teacher in view of his candidature for the vacant chair. Among others whose 
names we have heard mentioned as candidates are Mr. F. E. Beddard, prosector 
to the Zoological Society of London ; Mr. G. C. Bourne, who for many years 

6 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 83. 8 1 


has been demonstrator and lecturer at Oxford ; and Mr. W. Baldwin Spencer, 
formerly demonstrator to Prof. Moseley and now professor of zoology at 
Melbourne. The last mentioned is now visiting "the old country." The field, 
it will be seen, is a strong one. 

Prof. Ch. Deperet has been elected a member of the Paris Academy of 
Sciences, in the Section of Mineralogy, in succession to the late N. A. Pomel. 

The Special Board for Biology and Geology of Cambridge University, has 
adjudged the Walsingham Medal for 1898 to J. Graham Kerr, B.A., Fellow of 
Christ's, for his essay entitled " Notes upon a Research into the Life-History of 
Lepidosiren." Proxime accessit : A. C. Hill, B.A., Trinity, for his essay 
entitled : " Enzymes and Assimilation." 

Dr. O. Seydel, lecturer on Osteology at Amsterdam University, has resigned 
and returned to Germany. 

Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain. — Isaac Bayley Balfour, 
M.D., F.R.S., Regius Professor of Botany in the University of Edinburgh ; 
Leonard Dobbin, Ph.D., Lecturer on Chemical Theory in the University of 
Edinburgh; Alexander Davidson, Montrose; James Laidlaw Ewing, J. P., Edin- 
burgh ; James Jack, F.L.S., Arbroath ; George Lunan, Edinburgh ; Thomas 
Maben, Hawick ; and John Nesbit, Portobello, have been appointed members of 
the Board of Examiners for Scotland for 1899, under the provisions of the 
Pharmacy Acts, 1852 and 1868. 

As a result of the litigation consequent on the Nobel bequest, a compromise 
has been effected by which the relatives of the deceased will receive about 
£211,000, while a sum of nearly £1,400,000 remains for the prizes. The 
interest on this will make five annual prizes of £8300 each. The subjects of 
the prizes are given in Natural Science for February 1897, vol. x. p. 139. 

The subject of the first competition for the Nansen prize is some original 
research in embryology. The prize, which amounts to about £83, will be 
awarded at the annual meeting of the Christiania Academy of Science, on 
May 3, 1900. 

The scientific staff proposed for the University of Birmingham, which is 
intended to absorb and expand the Mason College, includes professors of mathe- 
matics, physics, chemistry, metallurgy, zoology, botany, geology and physio- 
graphy, mining, engineering, anatomy, physiology, bacteriology, and the usual 
medical subjects. In most cases there is to be a lectureship associated with 
each professorship. Mr. Chamberlain insisted at the preliminary meeting in 
November that a provincial University should be in some sense distinctive, 
" redolent of the soil and inspired by the associations in which it exists," and 
while recognising the prestige of the medical school and the necessity for giving 
science a prominent place, maintained that the special feature to be developed 
should be an organised commercial education. Another of his conclusions will 
also command sympathy — " that no University will be anything in which the 
teaching staff is insufficient or is starved." 

A hearty response has been given to Lord Kitchener's appeal for £100,000 
to found a college at Khartoum as a memorial to General Gordon. But con- 
sidering the enthusiasm of the public and the amount of idle money in the 
country, it seems surprising that the money was not at once subscribed many 
times over. The nobler aspect of the temper of the hour was well expressed in 
Mr. Rawnsley's "Farewell to Lord Kitchener," in The Outlook of Dec. 10. 

Under the bequest of the late A. W. G. Allen, the General Board of Studies 
of Cambridge University proposes to establish a research studentship of the 
value of £250, tenable for one year, and allotted alternately for scientific and 
for literary study. 

1899] NEWS 83 

At Cambridge University a John Lucas Walker Studentship in Pathology 
will shortly fall vacant. Candidates, who may be of either sex, should send in 
their names by January 19. The studentship is worth £200 per annum 
for three years. 

On November 29th the University of Edinburgh conferred the degree of 
LL.D. on Lord Kitchener of Khartoum, and the University of Oxford conferred 
the degree of Master of Arts by diploma upon His Royal Highness Prince 
Christian Victor of Schleswig-Holstein, G.C.B., Magdalen College, Major in the 
King's Royal Rifle Corps. 

The Maryland Geological Survey, the first Report of which was recently 
reviewed by us, has, during the past year, considerably enlarged its activities. 
It systematically collects statistical data concerning the mineral products of the 
State, which have an annual value of six to seven million dollars. The work 
of the Survey has been divided as follows : — Geology of the Piedmont Plateau, 
under the direction of Dr. E. B. Matthews ; Geology of the Appalachian Region, 
under Professor C. S. Prosser ; Geology of the Coastal Plain, under Dr. G. B. 
Shattuck ; Highways, under Dr. H. F. Reid ; Terrestrial Magnetism, under Dr. 
L. A. Bauer. Among the assistants are : A. N. Johnson, for highway engineer- 
ing ; Cleveland Abbe, jun., for physiography ; B. Sollers and B. W. Barton, for 
botany. Topographic surveying is carried on in co-operation with the United 
States Geological Survey, one of whose officers, Mr. H. Gannett, has furnished an 
elaborate treatise on the aims and methods of topographic work for the report 
on the cartography of the State. Professor G. P. Merrill of the United States 
National Museum has reported on the building and decorative stones of Mary- 
land. Extensive areal and economic work has been conducted in the western 
and central counties. The agricultural conditions, among others, have been 
considered, and the soils classified in co-operation with Professor Milton Whitney 
of the United States Department of Agriculture and with the Maryland Experi- 
ment Station. The connection of botany with geology is studied in co-operation 
with the newly organised State Horticultural Bureau. 

The State geologist, Professor W. B. Clark, is also Director of the State 
Weather Service, and proposes to issue a series of reports, in co-operation, with 
many of the United States Government officials. These promise to be of great 
practical value to the inhabitants of Maryland. 

By the connection of the Geological Department of Johns Hopkins University 
with the Maryland Geological Survey, a great impetus has been given to the 
study of this science, and the laboratory has been much enlarged. Though 
Mr. G. K. Gilbert, who used to lecture on physiographic geology, has withdrawn, 
there are now at least five regular lecturers — namely, Professor W. B. Clark, 
Drs. Shattuck, H. F. Reid, E. B. Matthews, and Mr. Willis. Lectures have 
also been delivered during the academic year by Mr. H. M. Wilson, Mr. Fassig, 
Professor Hans Reusch, and Professor G. P. Merrill. Besides numerous short 
excursions around Baltimore, a permanent camp was established near Cumber- 
land in the Appalachian Mountains, and, besides the regular instructors, special 
lecturers from the scientific bureaus in Washington were secured. It is note- 
worthy that attendance at the meetings of the Geological and Geographic 
Societies of Washington is considered an important part of the students' work. 
Members of this very active geological staff also give a course of lectures, with 
examination papers, to a hundred and ninety-seven teachers of Baltimore. 

The multifarious activity, the broad-minded conception of the science, and 
the intelligent co-operation with all possible sources of help, that mark the 
geological institutions connected with Johns Hopkins University, reflect the 
greatest credit on the authorities of the University, especially Professor W. 
Bullock Clark, and may serve as a lesson to those Universities in this country 
that seem to have forgotten how essential growth and development are to a 
continued existence. 


The Government of Natal lias decided to undertake a complete Geological 
Survey of the Colony, mainly for the purpose of developing coal and other 
mineral resources of the country. The services of Mr. W. Anderson have been 
engaged as Government Geologist to superintend the Survey. Mr. Anderson 
has for some years been employed on the Indian Geological Survey, and 
previously served in a similar capacity in New South Wales. 

The biological laboratory of the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences, at 
Coldspring Harbor, Long Island, has now been established for nine years, and 
has recently begun a systematic biological survey of the locality. The general 
outlines of the fauna and flora are sketched by Prof. C. B. Davenport in Science 
for November 18, 1898 (vol. viii. pp. 685-089). 

Since her return from Cuba, the U.S. Fish Commission steamer "Fish Hawk" 
has been working under the command of Lieut. -Commander R. G. Davenport, 
U.S.N., and the scientific direction of Prof. H. C. Bumpus, in Narragansett 
Bay and around Block Island. Various problems presented by the marine fauna 
have been studied, especially those connected with the breeding and distribution 
of star-fi.-h. 

The Swedish Government has approached Her Majesty's Government in 
connection with a hydrographical conference, for the purpose of considering 
questions affecting the fishing interest. The Swedish Government is understood 
to be negotiating also with other powers. 

Mr. Alfred L. Jones, says the British Medical Journal, has offered £350 a 
year to found and maintain in Liverpool a laboratory for the study of tropical 
diseases. This will be associated with the Royal Southern Hospital and Uni- 
versity College, Liverpool. 

Hyderabad is to have a Pasteur Institute adjoining its hospital and medical 
school. It is expected to be open for patients before June. 

Nature learns from the Trinidad Bulletin of Miscellaneous Information that 
Dr. Morris, whose appointment as superintendent of the Botanical Department for 
the Lesser Antilles we recently announced, will have the control of the follow- 
ing stations : Barbadoes, Grenada, St. Vincent, St. Lucia, Dominica, Montserrat, 
Antigua, and St. Kitts. The Jamaica, Demerara, and Trinidad stations will at 
present remain independent, and a new station, under the control of Trinidad, 
is to be founded at Tobago. 


At a meeting in Edinburgh on November 8th, a committee was appointed 
to consider the feasibility of establishing a Scottish Zoological Garden. The 
idea of a " Zoological Society " was mooted, but did not, we are pleased to 
learn, find support. There are already three or four societies in Edinburgh 
which have to do with Zoology, and any attempt to insinuate another would 
simply alienate the sympathies of those who would be glad to see a well-con- 
sidered Zoological Garden instituted. A committee, including Prof. Cossar 
Ewart, Dr. Ramsay Traquair, Prof. A. E. Mettam, Mr. Fairgrieve, Mr. W. S. 
Bruce, Mr. Hope Findlay, and others, was appointed ; and we wish them 
success. We venture to predict that a successful site is to be found in the 
direction where holidayers do most resort. Proximity to the sea would also lie 
a great advantage. We hope the enthusiasts and the capitalists may come to 
terms, and that more may soon be heard of this excellent scheme. 

The Brighton Ac]uarium, which has long failed in promoting its original 
objects, is now in liquidation. We understand that negotiations are in 
progress for the purchase of the property by a Winter Garden syndicate. At 
the same time, some energetic citizens of Brighton are promoting a scheme 
for the establishment of a Zoological Garden on one of the hills behind the 

1899] NEWS 85 

In reference to our note last month (xiii. p. 368) on the Frank Buckland 
collection, we are pleased to learn that a memorial has been prepared for 
presentation to the Lord President of the Council and the President of the 
Board of Trade protesting against the removal and distribution of what was 
brought together after many years of laborious work. 

With the view of rescuing the museum from oblivion, and raising it from its 
present abject position to one of usefulness, it is proposed that it should be made 
part of the duties of the inspectors of fisheries to preserve and deposit in the 
Museum of Economic Fish Culture any objects of permanent interest which may 
come under their notice, together with models of improvements in fish passes, 
fish-culture apparatus, etc., which may be useful for reference or record. It is 
also suggested that the secretary and the inspectors of the Fisheries Department, 
together with the representatives of the Fishmongers' Company, should be 
appointed visitors to advise on and aid in the efficient management and develop- 
ment of the museum. 

The memorial has already been signed by the chairmen of the leading fishery 
boards throughout the country, and other associations and individuals interested 
in the fisheries, including the Duke of Richmond, Sir Edward Birkbeck, Sir W. 
Priestley, Sir Thomas Walpole, Sir George Macpherson-Grant, Lord-Justice A. 
L. Smith, the prime warden of the Fishmongers' Company, the president of the 
Fly-Fishers' Club, and representatives of all the leading fishing clubs. 

Professor Trail, of Aberdeen University, has set on foot a movement for the 
formation of a Society and the institution of a Natural History Museum at 
Aberdeen. The following are amongst the objects of the Society : — (a) Collec- 
tions from the district to illustrate with the utmost possible completeness the 
local natural history, and history of man from his earliest appearance within 
the district to the present time. (6) Series of types carefully selected to 
illustrate the leading features of natural history and of man's progress in their 
wider relationships elsewhere than in the locality ; these series to be made of 
use for teaching, (c) Specimens and preparations mounted in boxes, con- 
structed for easy and safe transport; these specimens, etc., to be selected as 
suitable for instruction in schools, and to be lent to teachers desirous to use 
them in teaching in their schools, the borrowers defraying carriage both' ways, 
and making good any damage done to objects while in their custody. 

Apropos of the Lithographic Exhibition at the South Kensington Museum 
it is interesting to note that for some time past experiments have been made 
which seem to show that similar results can be obtained by the use of prepared 
plates of aluminium. The importance of the discovery will be readily seen 
when one considers the relative weight and cost of Solenhofen stone and plates 
of aluminium. It has got to be shown whether the extreme delicacy of the 
work done of the process of Aloys Senefelder can be produced by the use of 
the metal. 

Mr. John Morgan, of Hastings, who has for many years been engaged in 
collecting corals, has recently arranged his museum and made it accessible to 
the public in a suitable building connected with the Hastings Public Baths at 
White Rock. The hall, we understand, was originally intended for an aquarium, 
and Mr. Morgan uses some of the tanks for exhibiting various marine organisms. 
The collection is well labelled, and illustrated both by diagrams and Saville 
Kent's well-known photographs of the Great Barrier Reef. Mr. Morgan arranges 
for a weekly lantern lecture or demonstration, and has also secured the services 
of Mr. Connold, secretary of the Hastings Natural History Society, to conduct 
visitors round the museum. 

In the museum of the Royal Agricultural and Commercial Society of British 
Guiana, at Demerara, various changes have recently been introduced. The 
exhibited series of birds has been revised according to the British Museum 
Catalogue, and over 200 specimens have been remounted by Gerrard and Son of 

86 NE WS [.TAxuAr.Y 

London. Other groups have been partially revised, so far as is possible in the 
absence of modern literature. It is hoped that the issue of a revised edition of 
the British Museum Catalogue of Fishes will enable the curator to work up 
those animals as completely as the birds ; meanwhile a comprehensive collection 
of British Guiana fishes is being made, and preserved for the most part in for- 
malin. Exhibition space in this museum has been extended by the addition of 
an upper gallery. Chief among recent acquisitions is a large series of rocks 
collected in the N.W. District by J. B. Harrison and H. I. Perkins, to illustrate 
a Government report. The chief ditficulty in the curatorial work of this 
museum is presented by atmospheric changes and over much moisture. It is 
satisfactory to learn that many inquiries are made at the museum both person- 
ally and by correspondence, and that it is becoming more and more a general 
educating force in the colony. 

Mr. Th. Masui reports to Baron van Eetvelde, (Secretary of State for 
the v Congo Free State, on the progress of the Congo Museum at Brussels. Over 
two thousand plants have been collected, of which about five hundred are new 
to science. Zoological and geological collections are also accumulating, and are 
being worked up already. Much is expected from the expeditions con- 
ducted by Major Cabra in the province of Mayomba, by Lieutenant Lemaire en 
route for Katanga, and by Commander Weyns to the Cataracts and Mid-Congo ; 
and many other enterprises both scientific and practical are contemplated, or 
have actually begun. The practical side of the museum has two purposes in 
view — to present a complete collection of the products which the Congo 
furnishes, and to exhibit the materials which may be advantageously imported 

Mr. J. G. Robertson has presented to the Edinburgh Museum of Science 
and Art the unique Skeleton of a Carboniferous Labyrinthodont, Keraterpeton 
galvani, from the Jarrow Colliery, Kilkenny, described and figured by Mr. 
A. S. Woodward in the Geological Magazine for 1897, p. 293. 

The Toynbee Record for December 1898 gives some account of the excellent 
work which has been done by Miss Hall, Curator of the Whitechapel Museum, 
in rendering the collection available for the purposes of elementary education. 
Parties of school children, under the charge of their teachers, visit the museum, 
and have demonstration lessons. "Such an elementary museum," Sir William 
Flower said, " should be in every district in London. It should be the nucleus 
of the Natural History teaching in the schools, and a stepping-stone to the 
understanding of our larger museums." 

A number of valuable donations have just been made to Dundee Museum by 
the Egypt Exploration Fund. These consist of an outer and inner mummy 
case, found in the necropolis of Ha-Khenensu, five tablets from Dendereh, and 
a large number of interesting archaeological objects illustrating the religious and 
domestic life of ancient Egypt. 

Miss Anna T. Jeanes has presented the Philadelphia Academy of Natural 
Sciences with $20,000, the income to be used for museum purposes. 

Four large cases of manufactured Russian antiquities were recently de- 
spatched from Warsaw to this country for the benefit of English antiquaries. 
There is a regular trade in such objects at Kazan. Verb. sap. 

The scientific societies of Plumstead and Woolwich have formed a committee 
to urge upon the Library Commissioners the formation of a museum or museums 
for the locality. The secretary is Mr. T. R. Marr, 6 Russell Place, Woolwich. 

In our last number we gave a short account of the proceedings at the 
International Conference on Scientific Literature convened by the Royal 
Society. We did not think it necessary to say that we had abstracted this 
account from our highly valued contemporary Nature, since we assumed that 

1899] NEWS 87 

the proces-verbaux were public property, and that copies would be distributed 
to the press, especially the scientific press, in due course. No copy has yet 
reached us, and we gather from Science, as well as from other sources, that no 
attempt has been made by the Royal Society to furnish the scientific public 
with any account of the work carried on by this Congress. We now recall the 
strange fact that the elaborate " Report of the Committee of the Royal Society 
of London, with Schedules of Classification," though bearing date March 30, 
1898, was never heard of by many of those most interested until late on in the 
year (vide articles in Science, and by Rrof. Victor Cams in Zoologischer 
Anzcii/er). It seems to us that the Royal Society does not realise its respon- 
sibilities. Why this shrinking from the public gaze 1 Are the members of the 
Committees so afraid of criticism 1 This is a scheme that appeals to the whole 
world of science ; it will have to be supported by money ; it will require the 
ardent co-operation of numerous individuals. To say the very least, it is not 
wise of the Royal Society to put on its usual airs of superiority and indifference 
in a matter of this kind. We have excellent reason for believing that the 
eminent and courteous Secretaries of the Royal Society are not responsible for 
this darkness where there should be light. Who, then, is the culprit ? 

In changing their treasurer the Royal Society of London has made an im- 
portant alteration in its arrangements. From time immemorial the treasurer 
has been the deputy of the president in the latter's absence, but in the future 
the deputy of the president will be one of the vice-presidents, as is the custom 
in the majority of other societies. 

The Report of the Council of the Palaeontographical Society adopted at the 
Annual General Meeting on 17th June, was issued on 21st November, so that 
the news contained in it is somewhat musty. It is pleasing, however, to learn 
that the accessions to the ranks of the Society have more than balanced the 
losses that had arisen from death and resignations ; also that £40 : 14 : has 
been obtained through sale of back stock. Within the next ten years the stock 
will, it is anticipated, be exhausted. Members can procure at a reduced rate 
publications more than ten years old ; and separate parts, where a sufficient 
supply exists, can be bought for a sum dependent upon the number of plates. 
The new members of the council are W. Hill, J. Hopkinson, F. W. Rudler, and 
D. H. Scott. The president is still Dr. Henry Woodward, and the secretary 
Rev. T. Wiltshire, 25 Granville Park, Lewisham, London, S.E. The annual 
subscription is one guinea. 

At the meeting of the Geologists' Association, London, on 2nd December, 
A. M. Davies read "Contributions to the Geology of the Thames Valley." (See 
p. 14.) 

The opening conversazione of the Dublin Naturalists' Field Club was held 
on October 18; that of the Belfast Club on November 2. At each 
function Dr. R. F. Scharff and Mr. R. Welch exhibited specimens of My sis 
relicta, a fresh-water shrimp recently dredged in Lough Neagh. Among the 
numerous other exhibits, testifying to the activity of both societies, we note 
Elatine Hydropiper, recently discovered in the Lagan Canal, and exhibited by 
J. H. Davies and W. Gray ; new species of foraminifera from the Pleistocene 
clay of St. Erth, Cornwall, by Joseph Wright ; land and fresh-water shells col- 
lected in Kerry, and living specimens of the Kerry slug, Geomcdctcs maadosus, 
by R. Welch. 

At the second ordinary meeting of the Scottish Microscopical Society on 
December 16, a communication was read on "Changes occurring in some cells 
of the newt's stomach during and after activity," by Dr. E. Wace Carlier, B.Sc. 

The officers of the Swedish Geological Society for 1899 are: — President, 
Prof. A. E. Tornebohm ; Secretary, Dr. E. Svedmark ; Treasurer, Dr. G. 
Holm ; with G. de Geer and E. Erdmann as Members of Council. At the 


meeting on 1st December P. J. Holmqvist read a paper on the Rapakivi Granite 
of Eodo, near Sundsvall. This district shows numerous variations and inter- 
minglings of acidic and basic eruptive rock of post-archaean age . G. Gellerstedt 
exhibited sections of clay-pits at Ekeby, near Upsala ; these were drawn on a 
natural scale, and showed that the distortions in the clay could not be due to 
any slipping, but might be ascribed to the pressure of land-ice. 

The Society for the Protection of Birds (3 Hanover Square, London, W.), 
has issued a leaflet, copies of which may be had from Mrs. F. E. Lemon, Hon. 
Sec, giving a summary of the jjroceedings at a conference held on Oct. 7, 
1898. Mr. John Colan and Mr. W. B. Gerish dealt with imperfections in the 
Protection Acts ; Mr. J. H. Allchin discussed the recent decrease of swallows 
and martins ; Mr. Ernest Bell spoke of the value of birds of prey ; and there 
were other papers. 

In future the annual gathering of the learned societies of France is to take 
place alternately in Paris and the provinces. At Easter next it will be held at 

The Economic Society of Mohrungen, near Konigsberg, offers a prize of 
four thousand marks for the best work on the relations of electricity to living- 

We regret to see announced in Lafeuille des jeunes naturalistes the dissolu- 
tion of the Societe des Naturalistes de Provence. 

At a meeting of the Boyal Physical Society, Edinburgh, on December 21st, 
the following communications were made : — On results of feeding Drosera with 
various chemical foods, by Miss L. H. Huie ; on the age of the Shetland old red 
sandstone, by Dr. J. S. Flett ; exhibition of and remarks on the eggs and embryos 
of Omithorhynchus, Echidna, and Ceratodus, by Dr. Gregg Wilson ; exhibition 
of eggs of Xanthophilus bojeri from Witu, British East Africa, by J. B. Dobbie. 

At the meeting of the Geologists' Association, London, on January 6, Mr. 
H. W. Monckton will lecture on the glaciers and fjords of the Bergen district, 

On December 15 Mr. J. G. Goodchild gave an address to the Edinburgh 
Geological Society on some recently exposed rock sections in Edinburgh, and 
gave approximate estimates of the thickness of the various series : — -lower red 
sandstone, 1000 feet; Craigmillar sandstone, 500 feet; Balagon rocks, 350 
feet; volcanic rocks of Arthur Seat, 750 feet; Abbeyhill series, 500 feet; the 
limestone series, 2000 feet. 

On 6th December, Professor G. B. Howes lectured at the Free Public 
Museum, Whitechapel, on "The Story of a Thigh Bone." Forthcoming lectures 
are: — 10th January, Dr. E. Starling, "How we digest our Dinner"; 7th 
February, F. A. Bather, " A Piece of Limestone " ; 7th March, Miss Cora B. 
Sanders, " The ways in which Animals warn their Enemies and signal to their 
Friends"; 11th April, P. Chalmers Mitchell, "Brain." Lecturers at this 
Museum are sure of a good audience, and the curator, Miss Hall, is always glad 
to hear of anyone willing to help in this good work. 

Several series of Lectures have been delivered during the past autumn at 
the Manchester Museum. Prof. F. E. Weiss had for his subject "Darwin's 
Botanical Work on Movement in Plants, Insectivorous Plants, and Fertilisation in 
Flowers." Prof. S. J. Hickson discussed the " Extinction of Species." Mr. Hoyle 
begins a Bank Holiday course on " Aquatic Mammals " on Boxing Day, including 
a special lecture for children, entitled " Water Babies," on January 7th. On 
January 21st, 28th, and February 4th, Prof. Boyd Dawkins is to lecture on the 
" Physical Geography of Britain in the Tertiary Period." He is also giving 
short addresses in the Museum on various Saturday and Sunday afternoons. 

1899] NEWS 89 

On December 3rd Mr. J. Arthur Thomson lectured to the Edinburgh Health 
Society on "Facts of Inheritance" ; on December 11th Dr. Richard J. A. Berry 
lectured on " The Nervous System, its Uses and Abuses " ; and the course closed 
on December 17th with a lecture by Dr. George R. Wilson on "Rational 
Enjoyment." The previous lectures in this (the fifteenth) course were on the 
following subjects: — "Crime," by Lieut.-Col. M'Hardy, Chairman, Prison 
Commissioners for Scotland ; " Corpulence," by Dr. J. C. Dunlop ; " Lord 
Lister and his Work," by Mr. Alexander Miles ; " Milk as a Vehicle for the 
Spread of Disease," by Dr. James Foulis. The last-named has been the 
subject of a prolonged and animated discussion in the Scotsman. 

On the 28th November, Mr. C. W. Andrews of the Natural History 
Department, British Museum, gave a lecture before the Royal Geographical 
Society on his recent exploration of Christmas Island, the lovely islet which 
lies in the Indian ocean about 190 miles south of Java, It rises from the 
summit of a submarine ridge separating two great abysses, the western ex- 
tremity of the ridge forming the Keeling or Cocos Islands. The climate is 
delightful, the vegetation luxuriant, the fauna fairly rich, including some new 
birds and mammals. But it is in its rich deposits of phosphate of lime that the 
wealth of the island chiefly consists. 

The following are among the lecture arrangements at the Royal Institution 
before Easter : — Sir Robert Ball, 6 lectures (adapted to young people) on 
Astronomy ; Professor E. Bay Lankester, 10, on " The Morphology of the 
Mollusca " ; Mr. A. Henry Savage Landor, 3, on " Tibet and the Tibetans " ; 
Dr. Allan Macfadyen, 4, on " Toxins and Antitoxins " ; The Bt. Hon. Lord 
Bayleigh, 7, on the " Mechanical Properties of Bodies." The Friday evening 
meetings will begin on January 20, when a discourse will be delivered 
by Professor Dewar on Liquid Hydrogen. 

The year 1899 is the Centenary year of the Royal Institution, and arrange- 
ments are being made with a view to its celebration in a fitting manner. 

Mr. P. W. Christian, who has spent much time in Samoa and other Pacific 
islands, and has made a study of Polynesian dialects, lectured at Eton College 
on October 29. That which most took the fancy of his hearers was his account 
of how he introduced cricket into several of the islands. The population takes 
such an interest in the matches that the partisans of the losing side try to loot 
the houses of the winners. Result, a free fight. Another feature of the game 
is that every able-bodied man has an innings. Hence a match lasts for many 
weeks, which, considering its usual termination, may be considered fortunate. 

Sven Hedin is classifying his geological specimens, which he will present to 
the High School of Stockholm, and is preparing a detailed account of his journey 
from Kathgar to Khotan for Petermann's Mittlteilungen. His archaeological 
collection and manuscripts will be arranged by Professor Grunwedel, and 
exhibited in the Berlin Museum, whilst Dr. Ekholm is dealing with the meteoro- 
logical notes. The maps and charts, covering 552 sheets, have been confided 
for enlargement and reproduction to Justus Perthes, of Gotha. Dr. Hedin 
proposes to start on his next journey of Asian exploration about the middle of 
1899. He intends to cross the Taklamakan desert twice, thoroughly explore 
one of the largest rivers of Turkestan, and again study the interesting Lob Nor 
problem. The most important part of the work will, however, be explorations 
in the north and interior parts of Tibet. Dr. Hedin hopes to be able to spend 
a winter in some of the highest alpine regions of Tibet at a height of about 
15,000 feet. Then he will pay a visit to the new Viceroy of India, and will 
return over Himalaya, Karakoram, and Kashgar. Dr. Hedin will again go 
alone, and he calculates that his three years' travel will cost no more than 


Dr. Clias. F. Millspaugh, of the Field Columbian Museum and of Chicago 
University, is now undertaking a fourth expedition to Yucatan to study the 
flora of the interior. 

The German Deep-Sea Expedition has already obtained some interesting- 
results. In some of the deep-sea deposits, as well as in samples of water from 
the greater depths, many forms of bacteria have been observed. By the use of 
closing nets it has been shown that many crustaceans and fishes, supposed by 
earlier expeditions to live on the bottom, really belong to the intermediate 
Avaters. North of the Canaries the Josephine and Seine Banks rise steeply to 
within 100 fathoms of the surface. Soundings and temperatures were taken 
around the Seine Bank, and large numbers of hydroids, antipathids, and the 
crinoid Antedon phalangium were dredged. The last-mentioned was previously 
well known from the same locality, having been dredged there by the s.s. "Dacia" 
in 88 fathoms. Continuous observations have been made on temperature, 
on specific gravity of surface, and when possible of deeper, waters, as well as 
on density, colour, and transparency of the water, on ocean currents, and on 
atmospheric changes. 

The Prince of Monaco's new yacht, the "Princesse Alice," which left Havre 
on June 23, made a successful voyage in high northern latitudes and returned 
to Havre on September 20. Dredgings at great depths were poor, but at lesser 
depths rich and varied. 

Messrs. Chevalier, botanist, and Pejeal, geologist, have accompanied General 
de Trentinian on an expedition to explore French possessions in the Soudan. 

Science informs us that Dr. W. J. M'Gee, of the Bureau of American 
Ethnology, and Prof. W. H. Holmes of the U.S. National Museum, have 
returned from explorations in the southern sierra region of California, where 
important collections were obtained for the museum and observations made on 
the surviving Indians of the district. Dr. J. Walter Fewkes of the same 
bureau is now carrying on researches among the Hopi Indians. 

News has been received that Dr. H. O. Forbes, of the Liverpool Museum, 
and Mr. W. R. Ogilvie Grant, of the British Museum, safely landed on the island 
of Socotra on December 6. 

Dr. Donaldson Smith, the American traveller, well known for his journey to 
Lake Rudolph, and more recent travels in Mongolia, proceeds to Somaliland to 
collect " big game " and birds for the Gaekwar of Baroda, who is desirous of 
adding to his already fine Museum of Natural History. He is accompanied in his 
trip by Mr. Carlile Eraser, of Paisley, who has had long experience of African 
travel in Nyassaland and Uganda. 

In connection with Sir Clement Markham's appeal for subscriptions to a 
National Antarctic Expedition, there seems some hope of an important nest-egg. 
When Baron Oscar Dickson made offer of £5000 towards an Antarctic 
expedition, which was to be under the leadership of the elder Nordenskjold, Sir 
Thomas Elder offered a similar sum. The project fell through at the time, but 
it is said that before his death Sir Thomas, deposited the above sum in an 
Adelaide bank, there to wait till the times were ripe. 

Mr. F. H. Knowlton, of the U.S. National Museum, communicates the 
following note to The Plant World for November 1898 :—-" While collecting 
fossil plants in the State of Washington during the past season I discovered, 
about one mile north of the town of Liberty, a deposit nearly a foot in thick- 
ness made up almost entirely of gigantic palm-leaves. They are of the ordinary 
palmate or palm-leaf fan shape, with a petiole nearly an inch in diameter, and 
although no absolutely perfect specimen could be obtained, from the leaves 
beino 1 so matted together, there is evidence that the leaves must have been from 
four to six feet in diameter. It represents an undescribed species of Sabal," 

1899] NEWS 91 

The Council of the Marine Biological Association reports that the equip- 
ment of the laboratory and boats is now sufficiently complete to allow of a very 
much larger amount of scientific work being done, if the services of more 
naturalists could be retained for lengthened periods ; but such development 
demands increased income. Twenty-one naturalists carried on research work 
at the laboratory during the year 1897-98. From the Director's report we 
gather that an Anglo-French Committee has been formed to investigate the 
physical and biological conditions of the English Channel during 1899, that 
£100 has been granted towards this by the British Association, and that Mr. 
H. N. Dickson will help in the physical part of the work. Dr. Allen gives a 
list of twenty naturalists who have worked at the laboratory ; eight of these 
are not mentioned in the Council's report, owing, we suppose, to the difference 
of date. More attractions have been introduced in the. aquarium, and an iron 
shed for storage has been added at the back of the laboratory. 

On 10th December, Sir John Gorst addressed a large meeting of agri- 
culturists at Cambridge, on the necessity of reform in the educational .system of 
our agricultural districts. He referred to the evidence gathered by the Dublin 
Recess Committee as to what was being done in France, Belgium, Holland, 
Switzerland, and Denmark. The reports of the Commissioners showed that the 
chief reason of the agricultural prosperity of those countries, which so success- 
fully competed with Great Britain, was the education of all classes, both adults 
and children, in the technical knowledge appertaining to their industry. He 
then sketched a system to effect the necessary reforms essential to the establish- 
ing of sound agricultural education in this country. 

Attempts have been made more than once to utilise the thread of the 
spider in the same way as that of the silkworm, and about a century ago 
stockings were woven from it. The latest application is to balloon ropes for use 
by the military aeronauts of France, and a factory is in successful operation at 
Chalais-Meudon, near Paris. According to the Board of Trade Journal, the 
spiders are arranged by dozens above a reel, upon which the threads are wound. 
Each spider has to furnish 30 to 40 yards. The reddish and sticky outer cover 
is washed from the threads, which are then twisted by eights into yarn. This 
is both stronger and lighter than silk cords of the same thickness ; but it is also 
much more expensive. The chief difficulty in these experiments has always 
been the feeding of the spiders. 

The Government of New Zealand has issued an order protecting the eggs as 
well as the young of the interesting Tuatara lizard. 

Caen Museum thought it was going to buy a fine meteorite weighing 750 
kilos, and said to have fallen at Vierville (Manche) in April 1897. Alas ! the 
meteorite never fell. It was the brilliant invention of a newspaper man. 

The Feuille des Jeunes Naturalistes (35 Rue Pierre-Charron, Paris) proposes 
(from November 1, 1898) to lend the, books of its scientific library to those 
subscribers who live in neighbouring countries. 

A catalogue of these works is being issued, and up to this date twenty-four 
parts, comprising 33,000 numbers, have been published. 

It is intended to add to the General Catalogue special catalogues on definite 
branches of Natural History, completing these by the acquisition of the various 
works issued on the subject. That on Collembola and Thysanura (anatomy, 
biology, systematic) was published on November 30. Those on the Tertiaries of 
Europe (1st part) and Cecidiology (study of galls from a botanical and an 
entomological standpoint) will be issued shortly. Other subjects are being- 
worked out. The annual subscription to the Library, including the Magazine 
and the Library Catalogues, has been fixed at 16s. for English subscribers. 
Pamphlets can be borrowed for their postage (English stamps taken), and kept 

9 2 NEWS [JANUARY 1899 

for two months. The idea is novel, and should prove useful to those not 
connected with any large library. We hope that our colleague, Mr Adrien 
Dollfus, will meet with success. 

The use of the globes, at one time a polite accomplishment, has of late been 
set aside in consequence of the great improvement in cartography and increased 
cheapness of maps. But the last year has witnessed a return to favour of the 
more natural method of representation, and interest in globes has been stimu- 
lated by the gigantesque proposals of Elisee Reclus. It is therefore an oppor- 
tune announcement of Dietrich Reimer, Berlin, that he has now on sale a 
geologically coloured globe of the Earth, prepared by M. Piitz under the direc- 
tion of Professor W. Dames. This shows not only the solid geology of the 
land, but also the deposits now forming in the seas, such as red clay and 
Globigerina ooze ; this part of the work is based on the maps of Murray and 
Renard in the "Challenger" Reports. The diameter of the globe is 34 centimetres 
(21^ inches). The price is 25, 32, or 40 marks, according to the method of 

The Government of British Guiana recently attempted to introduce the 
Indian buffalo {Bos bubalus) into that colony, but the experiment is likely to be 
a failure, since the animals cannot get enough water wherein to cool themselves 
at some seasons. Buffaloes from Indo-China have thrived and bred in Surinam 
for about four years, while in Cayenne they have done equally well for over ten 

The friends of the late well-known Warwickshire geologist, the Rev. P. B. 
Brodie, have decided to place a window to his memory in Rowington Church, 
of which he was Vicar for forty-five years. The Hon. Secretary to the fund is 
Mr. J. Booth, Rowington Hall, Warwick, i, 

In reference to a remark which we made {Nat. Sci. xiii. p. 435), Mr. George 
Abbott, Hon. Sec. of the S.E. Union of Scientific Societies, has informed 
us that the institution of a Postal Magazine Club has been attended by an 
increase in the number of periodicals bought by the members, and not by a 
decrease. This, from our point of view, is indeed a consummation devoutly to 
be wished. 

The London School Board has taken a practical step to further the study of 
botany. Arrangements have now been made, which will come into operation 
in April next, whereby a gardener will forward to the schools botanical speci- 
mens required for teaching botany or for object lessons, or for the combination 
of drawing and object lessons. 

The total output of gold ore in the United Kingdom in 1897 was, according 
to Dr. Le Neve Foster, 4517 tons, the total value at the mines being £6282. 
Copper mining is a decaying industry. The output of lead ore is also declin- 
ing ; last year it was only 35,338 tons, the smallest recorded during the last 
half century. The output of zinc ore, 19,278 tons, does not reach the average 
of the last quarter of a century. On the other hand, the output of coal last 
year was 202,129,931 tons, the highest hitherto recorded, while the output of 
iron ore reached 13| million tons.jj 

The Entomologist of the United States Department of Agriculture has 
issued an appeal for separate authors' copies of papers on insects, so that these 
may be filed under their appropriate heads in the Library of his division. The 
publications of the division are very liberally distributed, but authors' copies are 
usually sent to individuals, and so become private property. Any that are sent 
in response to this very justifiable request should be marked " For the Library 
of the Division of Entomology." The valuable publications of this department, 
to which we so often refer, will prove a rich return to the senders. 

Natural Science 

A Monthly Review of Scientific Progress 

February 1899 


Distribution and Morphology. 

Ix an essay of 6 pages, entitled " Grundziige der geographisch-morpho- 
logischen Methode der Pilau zensystematik," (G. Fischer, Jena,) Dr. 
Wettstein of Prague University has made a useful and suggestive 
contribution to the literature of systematic botany. The scientific 
systematist is no longer satisfied with adding new species or genera 
to the roll of names ; he aims at establishing affinities between 
those already known, in a word, the study of their phylogeny. 
But there is great danger of losing oneself in theory and speculation, 
and any objective method of comparison is welcome. Palaeontology 
and ontogeny have proved of service in delimiting and deter- 
mining the relationships of larger groups, as, for instance, the Fern 
allies (Pteridophyta), and the Gymnosperms and the Angiosperms. 
But in dealing with the higher subdivisions, genera, and species, 
these are useless, and it is here that Dr. Wettstein steps in with 
his geographic -morphological method. Morphology, though an 
excellent guide to affinities, is not always trustworthy, as, for 
instance, in the cases of seasonal dimorphism, which the author 
has described in certain Gentians, and species of Euphrasia, where 
late-flowering and early-flowering forms of the same species have 
quite differently shaped leaves, and show also differences in stem- 

The object of the essay is to show how facts of geographical 
distribution may be used as a guide to the systematic arrangement 
of the members of a polymorphic group of species. As examples, 
Dr. Wettstein selects a group of European Gentians and Euphrasias. 
Thus the range of fourteen European species of Gcntiana, section 
Endotricha, is depicted on one map, and the result is confusion. 
When, however, separate maps are devoted to each set of species, 
the distribution areas of which adjoin, it is seen that there are 
three distinct sets. As each set has, moreover, certain morpho- 
logical characters in common, the author maintains that this combina- 
tion of geographical and morphological considerations has elucidated 
three natural groups, and emphasises this conclusion by subordinating 

7 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 84. 93 


the members of each group as sub-species of one species, which he 
regards as the archetype. 

It is obvious that a satisfactory application of this method 
is possible only in cases where the geographical distribution has 
been approximately worked out, and, like any other method, its 
operation must not be pushed too far. It should at any rate prove 
of service to those who are working at floras of limited areas, 
and to such especially we would commend a careful perusal of Dr. 
Wettstein's essav. 

Irrelevant Generalities. 

The biological inquirer of to-day is like the fisherman of the old 
story who tapped a flask on the sea-shore and let loose a cloudy 
genie ; he explores a concrete object, it may be the sperm-cells 
of a snail or the wings of an insect, and forthwith there emerges 
upon him and upon us a looming cloud of " allgemeine Betrachtungen," 
the genie of general biology, who will in nowise return to his 
flask. So far, doubtless, it is well that every research should 
have a wide horizon ; but anyone who has read, say, the papers 
of the last five years relating to spermatogenesis, will surely agree 
with Mr. Bernhard Kawitz {Arch. f. mikr. Anat. 1898, liii. p. 20), 
that the generalising tendency is often as irrelevant as it is tedious. 
It is not necessary that everyone should point out every time 
how the often small item of new fact which has been securely 
established by his research bears upon the problems of cell-division, 
fertilisation, heredity, and the like, " okne dass dabei ein erkleklicher 
wissenschaftlicher Gewinn abfiel." " Very many authors," says 
Rawitz, and he has our sympathetic concurrence, " seem to me 
like a geographer who describes the province of Brandenburg and 
hangs on to that a discussion of the whole physical geography 
of the northern hemisphere." We know of irrelevant detail, like 
that of the venerable geologist who could not discuss graphite 
without bringing in the life-history of the Faber family ; but 
there are irrelevant generalities as well, and it is hard to say 
which are most exasperating. 

The Chinch Bug. 

In volume viii. of Natural Science (p. 376) reference was made 
to Mr. F. M. Webster's studies on the distribution of the Chinch Buo' 
(Blissas leucopterus, Say) in North America. An exhaustive monograph 
on the insect by the same naturalist has just been issued as Bulletin 
15 (N.S.) of the Entomological Division of the U.S. Department 
of Agriculture. Though intended primarily for the farmer's use — 

1899] THE CHINCH BUG 95 

the Chinch Bug; being- one of the six most destructive insects in 
the States — this work contains much to interest the general student 
of insect life. The severity of the attacks by the bugs on corn 
and grasses is largely clue to their gregarious habits. They have 
but few natural enemies, but high mortality is at times caused 
among them by certain fungi, notably Sporotrichium globuliferum. 
Eeference to the attempted utilisation of this fungus-disease for 
their destruction has already been made in Natural Science (vol. ix. 
pp. 6-7). Mr. Webster believes that artificial inoculation could 
only be worked successfully if the bugs were excessively numerous 
in wet weather or in damp situations. 

With regard to the origin and diffusion of the species, Mr. 
Webster brings forward evidence to show that there have been 
three principal northward lines of migration from tropical America : 
a western, along the Pacific coast to California ; a central, from 
the Gulf coast of Texas northward to Winnipeg ; and an eastern, 
along; the Atlantic seaboard to Nova Scotia. All the adults of 
the central migration have fully developed wings, but among the 
eastern race forms with vestigial wings are common. These latter 
have spread eastward and north-eastward, and in their progress 
through the New England States have acquired a habit of ravaging 
grass meadows, which is rarely practised by the bugs of the central 

Several species of Blissus inhabit Europe and Africa, but we 
can hardly accept Mr. Webster's suggestion that the ancestors of 
the American Chinch Bug were carried across the ocean by. the 
equatorial currents. 

Formation of a Human Race. 

In his treatise on in -breeding and crossing in man (" Inzucht 
and Vermischung beim Menschen," Leipzig, 1897), Dr. Albert 
Reibmayr brings much erudition to bear upon an old problem, the 
respective roles of in -breeding and crossing. Close in -breeding 
is necessary to fix and ennoble a race, but when it is prolonged, or 
if the material be poor, there is continual risk of weakness, infertility, 
and degeneration. But it is through in-breeding that a national 
character is evolved, and the problem of national eugenics is to 
watch for the crisis when crossing becomes necessary to obviate 
degeneracy. Thus in history there have been and must be alternating 
periods of dominant in-breeding and dominant cross-breeding. In 
America, the author indicates, a new race is being formed by complex 
cross-breeding, a new race which will lead mankind to new ideals in 
spite of the reactionary doctrine " America for the Americans." And 
behind this prophecy — which is always rather gratuitous — there is no 
.small amount of solid anthropological measurement and statistic. 

96 NOTES AND COMMENTS [febeuauy 

Do Salmon feed in Fresh Water? 

In the Report of Investigations on the Life-History of Salmon (Fishery 
Board for Scotland, 1898), edited by Dr. Noel Paton, there are two 
papers — by Dr. G. Lovell Gulland and by Dr. A. Lockhart Gillespie — 
which bear directly on the long-dispnted question whether salmon feed 
while in fresh water. The Edinburgh workers agree with Miescher- 
Eeusch (1880) in answering the question in the negative, thus differing 
from a well-known Scottish authority — Prof. W. C. MTntosh. The 
evidence adduced in the Eeport is threefold : — (a) During the salmon's 
stay in fresh water the mucous membrane is in a state of desquamative 
catarrh which suggests a cessation of function. This is corroborated 
by the absence of zymogen granules in the pancreas, the fatty condition 
of the liver, the emptiness of the gall bladder, and the absence of all 
trace of food. (b) Experiment showed that the proteolytic and 
diastatic action of the digestive secretions was extremely low. (c) The 
number of bacteria in the gut is very great, especially during the warm 
months, and this is interpreted as probably due to the diminished 
acidity of the gastric fluids. This is, of course, merely a hint of the 
nature of the actual evidence, which seemed to us so convincing, when 
we first read it, that we were rash enough to think that the question 
was settled at last. 

It seems that this is not so. In a paper in the Zoologisclier 
Anzeiger, 1898, xxi. pp. 514, 515, 517-523, Dr. Alex. Brown, 
Lecturer in Zoology in the University of Aberdeen, who has had great 
facilities in studying salmon, maintains that though the river fish are 
not in a condition to feed voraciously as in the sea, they do feed 
occasionally, much depending on external conditions, such as the 
temperature, density, and volume of the water. He does not find any 
trace of the catarrhal conditions observed by Dr. Gulland, except as. 
the result of post-mortem changes ; but he finds microscopic foreign 
particles and crystals of carbonate of lime in the intestine, which are the 
indigestible remains of ingested food. Moreover, the presence of leucin 
crystals in abundance and of tyrosin in the intestine point to the 
decomposition of proteid by the pancreatic juice ; and the pyloric and 
intestinal contents have a strongly active digestive character. Two 
more contradictory sets of results it would be hard to find ; and we 
look with eagerness for a reply from the Edinburgh laboratory. It is 
difficult to believe that an expert histologist was deceived by post- 
mortem changes. 

None of the investigators have as yet thrown light upon the fact 
that the salmon, alleged to be fasting, will still rise to the fly, or 
accept a prawn. We suspect that the explanation will be found to be 
psychological rather than physiological. 


The Mackerel and its Variations. 

Number 3 of volume v. of the new series of the Journal of the 
Marine Biological Association was published at Plymouth towards the 
end of November. It contains an important article on the " Variation, 
Eaces, and Migrations of the Mackerel (Scomber scomber)" by Walter 

This is an attempt to determine whether there are any racial 
peculiarities in groups of mackerel taken in different localities. Such 
peculiarities have not hitherto been recognised, even as between 
American and British representatives of the species ; but it is clear 
that the establishment of such peculiarities would affect to a consider- 
able degree our ideas concerning the migrations of this fish. 

Mr. Garstang has determined the peculiarities of more than 1600 
mackerel from various localities, in regard to ten chosen characters of 
which the following are the chief: — 

A. The number of black transverse bars or stripes on one side (the 
left) of the fish. B. The number of transverse bars on one side (the 
left) which cross or meet the lateral line. C. The presence or absence 
of round black spots (" intermediate spots ") between the bars of series 
A. The variation of this character is tabulated under two heads : — 
(1) The number of fish per centum which possess one or more of these 
intermediate spots, and (2) the total number of such spots per hundred 
fish (the left side only of each fish being considered). D. The number 
of rays in the first dorsal fin. E. The number of rays in the second 
dorsal fin, including any incipient finlets which are still partially 
connected with the fin by a low web or ridge, or which are merely 
closely approximated to the fin and erectile with it. F. The number 
of dorsal finlets, including all incipient finlets described under E. 

The American mean values for several of the characters, especially 
A, B, C, and F, differ to such an extent from the British means, that 
there can be no further doubt as to the existence of racial peculiarities 
which distinguish American from British specimens of the mackerel. 
As compared with the British mackerel, the American fish possesses 
the following racial characteristics 2 — (1) A higher number of transverse 
bars, (2) much greater spottiness, (3) a smaller number of fin-rays in 
the second dorsal fin, and (4) a greater number of dorsal finlets. 
These characteristics are average distinctions, and do not suffice to 
distinguish every individual. 

With regard to the Britisli fish, the range of variation is very 
limited, especially in the case of the second dorsal fin, the greatest 
deviation from the general mean value of which does not amount to 
T L of a fin-ray in any sample of 100 fish. The total number of fish 
from the various localities is seen to be insufficient in this case to 
afford a basis for the establishment of racial differences. In the case 


of the first dorsal fin the variation is greater, but here the difficulty of 
accurately determining in all instances the exact number of fin-rays 
present (owing to the extreme minuteness of the posterior rays) has 
also provided an obstacle to very definite results. Nevertheless 
Mr. Garstang comes to tin's " paramount conclusion " : — That the 
mackerel which frequent British waters are not exactly alike in all 
localities, but possess certain average peculiarities which distinguish 
one local race from another. These peculiarities are greatest between 
the races of localities which are geographically remote, and least 
between those which occupy areas that are geographically contiguous. 
Between the mackerel of the North Sea and English Channel there 
are no differences at all ; but the Irish race is distinctly divisible into 
two stocks, one of which is restricted to the west coast, the other to 
the south. A considerable amount of mixture takes place between 
the southern Irish stock and the fish which frequent the mouth of the 
English Channel. The western Irish stock represents more closely 
than any other race the primitive type of mackerel from which all, 
whether British or American, have been derived. 

If these results be accepted or confirmed, the problems of the 
migrations of the mackerel and of its winter home are considerably 
simplified. The Irish fish in winter must remain off their own coasts, 
or they would lose their peculiarities by mixture with other races. 
The North Sea and Channel fish probably have the same winter haunts 
off the mouth of the English Channel — not too far to the westward, or 
they would mix with the Irish fish. That the North Sea fish migrate 
into the Channel in winter is rendered probable by the enormous con- 
centration of mackerel in the southern part of the North Sea in autumn, 
and by the prolongation of the mackerel fishery far into the winter off 
the Devon and Cornish coasts of the Channel, long after the fish have 
disappeared from the North Sea and the Irish coasts alike. 

The paper is one of the highest importance to both systematists 
and practical fishermen. 

The Plymouth Laboratory. 

Othek papers contained in the same number of the Journal of the 
Marine Biological Association are: — "Report on Trawling in Bays on the 
South Coast of Devon," by E. W. L. Holt, with an Appendix by F. B. 
Stead. " Notes on Pontobdella muricata, the Skate-leech," by Hon. 
Henry Gibbs. " Notes on the Reproduction of Teleostean Fishes in 
the South-Western District," by E. W. L. Holt and L. W. Byrne. 
" The Great Silver Smelt, Argentina silus, Nilss. An addition to the 
List of British Fishes," by E. W. L. Holt, who gives the correct locality 
as 50° 20' N. and 8° 25' W., or about 75 miles true S. of the Old Head 
of Kinsale; depth 74 fathoms. This sensibly extends the range of 


A. mhis in a southerly direction ; the specimen is now in the British 
Museum. Other occurrences recorded in this number are: — The 
Gobiid fish, Callionymus maculatus, near Plymouth ; the Teleostean, 
Phrynorhombus unimaculatus, four miles S. of Plymouth Mewstone ; 
the Gadid fish, Motella cimbria, from the stomach of a hake in the 
Bristol Channel ; Sepia elegans, on trawling-grounds inside the Eddy- 
stone ; Mysis longicornis, in Start Bay, S. Devon, not previously known 
outside the Mediterranean ; Mysidopsis angusta, from the same locality, 
previously not farther S. than the Dogger Bank, but lately also re- 
corded by A. 0. Walker from Valencia Harbour, on the west coast of 

Colours of Cowries. 

To Knowledge, for December, Mr. E. Lydekker contributes an article 
upon the colours of cowries, illustrated by a full-page photographic 
plate. The interesting way in which the shells under consideration 
change during their growth from a thin-lipped form with a spire, as 
well shown by a series of skiagraphs in Science Gossip for June of last 
year, is briefly touched upon ; while the alterations in colour, rendered 
so easy by the hiding of the older by the more recently formed whorls 
and the application of pearly matter to the outside of the latter, is 
discussed in some detail. 

Mr. Lydekker is unable to throw any new light upon the object 
served by the colouring of adult cowries, nor does he suggest why 
the dark longitudinal bandings (which he calls transverse) of immature 
shells, presumably primitive and laid down by the edge of the mantle, 
should often be replaced by spots or uniform pigmentation derived 
from the pallial surface. 

Nevertheless, the remarks show that many interesting problems 
remain to justify a further study of cowries, and the paper affords a 
useful illustration of the more striking types of coloration. Perhaps 
the most striking of the spotted series is not dwelt upon, to wit, the 
form with, for instance, a brown ground colour broken by white spots, the 
larger of which in turn have a very dark brown dot on their centre. 

The plate would have been better entitled the markings of cowries 
seeing that it is not coloured, and it is hoped that it will not be taken 
as the best that photography can do for the conchologist. One is 
constrained to say conchologist, for the article ends with an uncalled 
for outburst against the biological method of studying molluscs. At 
the beginning of the change for the better about which Mr. Lydekker 
is not correctly informed, attention was naturally turned to the " so- 
called animal," our ignorance of the habits of which is so well brought 
out in the " colours of cowries," rather than to the points in connection 
with the shells which have been known for generations. 


The Fishes of Lake Tanganyika, 

Considering the remarkable remnants of a Jurassic marine fauna dis- 
covered by Mr. J. E. S. Moore among the mollusca of Tanganyika, the 
collection of fishes made by him at the same time is of a very 
disappointing nature. According to Mr. Boulenger's detailed and 
beautifully illustrated report just issued (Trans. Zool. Soc. xv. pp. 1-30, 
pis. i-viii.), all these fishes are typical modern freshwater forms such as 
might be found in any part of tropical Africa. The most abundant 
and varied species belong to the well-known family universally de- 
scribed in standard works under the name of Chromidae, but here termed 
Cichlidae in accordance with the latest fad of literary " research." The 
Tanganyika types of this family, indeed, are so varied that they have 
necessitated the establishment of nearly as many new genera as were 
previously known from the whole of Africa. There are three species 
of the spiny eel-shaped fish, Mastacembclus, six siluroids, three chara- 
cinoids, and one representative of each of the families Serranidae, Cypri- 
nidae, and Cyprinodontidae. There is also an undetermined species of 
Polypterus ; and Mr. Boulenger adds that Protoptcrus cmnectens has 
been recorded by Sir H. H. Johnston. In an appendix, however, Mr. 
Moore points out that his collection probably gives as inadequate an 
idea of the fish-fauna of Lake Tanganyika as would a haul on the 
rocky coast of the Isle of Wight in reference to the fish-fauna of the 
English Channel. Most of the interesting molluscs, sponges, and so 
forth, inhabit only the deeper waters of the lake ; and the fishes lying 
at these depths are still entirely unknown. Moreover, large fishes 
which bite the paddles of canoes have been seen in the open water 
away from land, but none of these have yet been captured. Ichthy- 
ologists, therefore, look forward with great interest to the results of 
Mr. Moore's projected second expedition, when he will be equipped 
with more effective means of netting and dredoins; this and some of 
the other great lakes. Meanwhile, it is necessary to suspend judgment 
and postpone speculations as to the meaning of the remarkable fauna 
in question. 

Zoological Notes from Japan. 

Volume II. Part III. of Annotationes Zoologicae Japoncnscs was pub- 
lished on October 10, 1898. The first paper is by Seitaro Goto and 
Shinkichi Hatai, on Japanese earthworms of the genus Perichaeta. It 
describes sixteen new species ; but to European workers the most in- 
teresting point will be the statement that all previous describers of P. 
sieboldi, from Horst to Rosa, have been mistaken as to the position of 
the spermathecae. A renewed examination of the specimens in Euro- 
pean museums is called for. 

Seitaro Goto, in the following paper, claims to prove that in the 


star-fish Asterina gibbosa the various divisions of the adult body-cavity 
are derived from portions of the larval body-cavity, different to some 
extent from those portions that give rise to them in Asterias pallida. 
In so far as this is proved, we might infer that the development of the 
species in question cannot be utilised in constructing a morphology for 
the Asteroidea as a class. Professor Goto incidentally corrects certain 
observations and conclusions by E. W. MacBride. Unfortunately the 
paper still lacks complete illustration and proof from sections. This 
we are promised in a paper to be published in the Journal of the 
College of Science, Tokyo. In the third paper Professor Isao Ijima 
describes Amoeba miurai, a new Bhizopod parasite of man. 

Nucleus and Cytoplasm. 

In a paper read at the December meeting of the Eoyal Physical Society, 
Edinburgh, Miss L. H. Huie supplemented her previous observations 
(Quart. Jour. Micr. Sci. 1897, xxxix. pp. 387-425, 2 pis.) on the 
changes in the tentacles of the sun-dew produced by feeding. She 
finds that substances applied to the tentacles of Drosera affect either 
the cytoplasm alone, or both cytoplasm and nucleus. The cytoplasm 
reacts to physical irritation, and also to chemical substances which serve 
as foods. The nucleus is only affected by substances acting as food, the 
rate and amount of changes in the nuclein depending on the facility 
with which the food is absorbed. This agrees with Dr. Gustav Mann's 
view that the cytoplasm should be regarded as a specific environment 
secreted by the nucleus of each cell for the purpose of selecting and 
modifying potential food-stuffs which come into contact with it, and 
within physiological limits protecting the nucleus against detrimental 

The Natural History of the Congo. 

Naturalists will learn with great interest that the Government of 
the Congo Free State has arranged to investigate the botany, zoology, 
anthropology, ethnology, and geology of the vast region of Africa under 
its jurisdiction, and proposes to issue a series of exhaustive monographs 
detailing the results. The series is to bear the general title, Annales 
du Mush du Congo, the nucleus of the Museum being the collection 
displayed at the Antwerp exhibition in 1894. E. de Wildeman 
and Th. Durand, of the Botanical Garden of Brussels, are occupied 
with the study of the flora. The zoologists who have already begun 
the task are G. A. Boulenger, Ph. Dautzenberg, Alph. Dubois, Seel- 
drayers, and Vincent. Anthropology is entrusted to Dr. Victor Jacques 
and Professor Stainier ; while ethnology will be undertaken by 
Th. Masui, director of the whole work. The geology will be investi- 


gated by Dr. Cornet of Mods and Professor Stainier. There will also 
be special monographs descriptive of different districts of the territory. 
The first instalment of this great and important work has just 
appeared, and further issues are promised at intervals of about three 
months. The part now before us is the first fasciculus of Bou- 
lenger's description of the fishes of the Congo, a handsome quarto with 
nine plates, most of them folded and representing the animals of the 
natural size. The extraordinary fishes of the family Mormyridae are 
here treated with a wealth of illustration hitherto unattained, greatly 
extending our knowledge both of genera and species. No less than 
three genera and nineteen species are added to those already known. 
These fishes seem to seek their food either in mud or in crevices 
between rocks (unfortunately Mr. Boulenger gives us no information 
as to the circumstances of life of any of them) ; hence they exhibit 
most remarkable modifications of the curved and elongated rostrum 
which bears the small mouth at the tip. The preliminary labelling of 
these strange animals having been accomplished, biologists will now 
await with great interest some scientific observations on the phenomena 
they present for study. The other fasciculus published is botanical. 

The Evolution of Immunity. 

Accoeding to Dr. Albert Eeibmayr, it is one of the functions of the 
physician to exorcise the evil spirits of anxiety and pessimism, and 
this is the aim of his last pamphlet, " Die Immunisirung der Familien," 
Leipzig und Wien, 1899. It is " ein Wort zur Beruhigung," a 
protest against " ghosts." His argument is not a novel one, but it is 
powerfully stated. It is this. Morbid conditions and tendencies are 
inherited, but relative immunity is also inherited, and the struggle is 
between them. In the course of natural selection, keenest during the 
early years of life, the less immune tend to be eliminated, and the 
standard is thus raised. But in this struggle the most momentous 
factor is in the external conditions of function and environment, for 
if these favour the morbid inheritance the organism has to fight a 
battle with two fronts which is seldom hopeful. The families which 
lay themselves open to this double struggle tend to be eliminated, 
especially on the male side, for the females, who often live a more 
natural life, and are more enduring, may keep up the strain of immu- 
nity. It may be recalled that in Ehrlich's experiments on immunity 
to ricin poisoning in mice, it was only through the females that 
any hint of inherited (?) immunity was detected, the relative large size 
of the ovum, with its affectable non-idioplasmic material, having perhaps 
to do with this. 

It may be said, then, that there are two main prophylactic pro- 
cesses — (a) the increase of constitutional immunity in the course of 


natural selection, and (6) the living of a healthy life, along with which 
may be included the hygienic devices which make for the elimination 
of microbes. Our author believes that carefully discriminated statistics 
show a decrease in the number of severe and fatal attacks. The cry 
" Back to a more natural life " is, he says, an instinctive one, which is 
becoming more and more general, and it is the voice of reason. It is 
plain, however, that there is another side to the question, which Hay- 
craft emphasised in his " Darwinism and Eace Progress " — If the race 
eliminates its own eliminators (the disease germs) which have at least 
helped to make it what it is, if it becomes no longer susceptible to 
their eliminative action, what selective agents — even more discrimi- 
nating, let us hope — are to take their place ? But how the human 
race is to get along when bacteria have ceased from troubling is not a 
pressing problem, and Dr. Eeibmayr does not raise it in his " Wort zur 

Photographic Process Colour Printing. 

The publication of the well-known series of coloured photographic 
process views of scenery made it evident that similar processes would 
be soon employed for the illustration of zoological books, and we have 
just seen what we believe to be the first application of this method of 
illustration to birds. The pictures in question appear in " Birds that 
Hunt and are Hunted," by Neltje Blanchan, which was published in 
1898 by Doubleday and M'Clure, of New York. Forty quarto plates 
of birds, with 360 pages of text, are issued at the low price of two 
dollars. The illustrations leave little to be desired, and some of them 
are perfectly lifelike, notably the Pintail Duck and the Teal, while the 
coloration of the Passenger Pigeon is perfect. These plates are pro- 
duced by the Nature Study Publishing Company of Chicago, and are 
well worthy the attention of those who publish similar books in this 
country. All the exquisite pencilling of the feathers is shown in a 
way far superior to that produced by lithography, while the cost is 
infinitesimal as compared with that of an artist. We are sorry that 
the lithographic artist will have to go, but we are glad that birds can 
at last be presented with an accuracy that renders their identification 

A Noble Gift. 

The Annual lieport of the Curator of the Museum of Comparative 
Zoology at Harvard College has just come to hand. It is impossible 
to scan its pages without feelings of sadness and of admiration. For 
the last time in his official capacity as Director, Prof. Alexander 
Agassiz, the worthy son of an illustrious sire, renders account of his 
stewardship. This alone would make for sadness were it not lightened 

io 4 NOTES AND COMMENTS [February 

by the knowledge that resignation was not intended to mean retirement 
from active research. On the contrary, as was announced some time 
ago, Prof. Agassiz has taken this step in order to devote his energies 
and talents, not to speak of means, to the pursuit of zoological investi- 
gation in distant and difficult fields. Zoologists must congratulate him 
on this resolution, deeply as they regret the severance of his official 
connection with the world-renowed museum which he has been so 
largely instrumental in creatine;. For all time the Museum of Com- 
parative Zoology will be a noble monument to the name of Agassiz. 
But the parting act and the parting gift ! These, indeed, command 
our admiration. As we read the deed of gift, its pathos and nobility 
seems to us indeed worthy of an Agassiz: — "I, Alexander Agassiz, of 
Cambridge, in consideration of one dollar and other valuable considera- 
tions to me, paid by the President and Fellows of Harvard College, 
the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged, do hereby give, grant, and 
convey to the said President and Fellows the following described 
articles of personal property now belonging to me, and contained in 
or used in connection with the Museum of Comparative Zoology." 

There then follow T s in the space of half a page a list of most of the 
contents of this museum and teaching institution. 

The " valuable considerations " chiefly relate to permission being 
granted to Prof. Agassiz and his private assistants to use certain rooms 
of the museum for purposes of research, and as a storing-place for — 
later on to be made the permanent home of — his future collections. 
Many of us who have come in contact with Prof. Agassiz have ex- 
perienced his liberality and self-sacrifice for the cause of science. 
What greater praise of this, his most recent act, can one give than 
this, that it is worthy of the man ? 


The alleged connection between Mosquitoes and Malaria has led to a 
special interest in the collection of various forms of Culicidae, and in 
this matter the authorities of the British Museum have printed a seven 
page tract of instructions how to collect. The chief points in the col- 
lection of Culicidae to be borne in mind are, not to use spirit, to pin 
specimens directly they have been killed, and to send specimens home 
as soon as possible, because they are liable to go mouldy if kept after 
death in tropical countries. One of the chief objects of this investiga- 
tion is the determination of the various kinds of Mosquitoes, since the 
species belonging to the family are at present but little known. The 
tract, which applies to all species of Diptera, can be obtained by appli- 
cation to the Director of the British Museum (Natural History), 
London, S.W. 


The Hull Club Commences Author. 

The Hull Scientific and Field Naturalists' Club is one of those local 
societies to whose energy, directed as it is into the most appropriate 
channels, we have often had pleasure in alluding. Therefore, although 
we are accustomed to deprecate the multiplication of minor publica- 
tions in natural history, we are half inclined to welcome the appear- 
ance of the first of a series of annual Transactions which the com- 
mittee has decided to issue. Indeed, our welcome becomes almost 
whole-hearted when we read that the aim is " to publish original 
papers and notes of local interest." For in these matters it is just 
those accurately-made local observations that have an abiding value 
for naturalists at large, whereas the general, even cosmical, lucubrations 
that fill up some publications of the kind are of interest chiefly, if not 
solely, to the writers themselves. 

The contents of the present number coincide to such an extent 
with the aspirations of the founders that our welcome becomes actually 
a warm one. We entertain no doubt that these Transactions, if they 
continue as they have begun, will materially advance the scientific 
study of natural history in Hull and its neighbourhood. The first 
paper is by Thomas Bunker, on " The Natural History of Goole Moor 
and the Immediate Vicinity"; this is historico-pastoral, botanico-orni- 
tholouical, zoolosnco- economical, and shows that the marshland of 
Goole and Thorn e Moor is a happy hunting-ground for many kinds of 
naturalists. H. M. Foster gives a useful and interesting account of 
" The Fishes of the Paver Hull," which are of twenty-one species. An 
exceptionally fine pair of antlers of the red deer (Cervus elaphus), from 
the peat at Hornsea, is illustrated and described by T. Sheppard. 

Extracts from the Secretary's Eeport are published, and from 
these we learn that the Club now numbers 127 members. Several of 
them are country members, residing more than ten miles from Hull, 
and admitted at a reduced fee. A good scheme recently carried out 
by the Club consists in practical demonstrations on such subjects as 
taxidermy, microscope preparations, preservation of larvae, and local 
fossils. J. F. Robinson, the recorder for botany, has compiled a Flora 
of the East Biding ; while the entomologists have in preparation a list 
of the Macrolepidoptera collected within eight miles of Hull. These 
will be published in future numbers of the Transactions. 

The present number is, correctly considered, a cpiarto, but measures 
22x14 centimetres (8|- x 5|- inches). It contains viii. + 2 8 pages, 
and one plate. The date of publication, December 14, 1898, is 
printed on the wrapper ; if it were also on the last page it would be 
still better. The price to non-members is Is. We congratulate the 
anonymous editor on the general appearance of the number; at the 
same time, we would suggest that each annual issue should form an 
independent part, with fresh pagination. 


Stone Implements from Swaziland. 

A fine series of stone implements has recently been sent to England 
by Mr. Sidney Ryan. They were found near Darkton, in the tin-bearing 
gravels of the M'Babaan, or Embabaan, Biver, West Swaziland. The 
thirteen consists of siliceous schist, black fine-grained quartzite or chert, 
and of quartzites composed of grit and breccia of quartz, lydite, and 
jasper. There is also one of crystalline quartz. The large forms vary 
in length from 4^ x 3^ to 8x4| in., and weigh from 13^ oz. up to 
2 lb. 7jf oz. Their shape corresponds to weapons found in England and 
France, being of a long-ovate, sharper at one end than at the other. 
Professor Rupert Jones has described and figured these interesting 
implements in the Journal of the Anthropological Institute, New Series, 
vol. i. It is not possible at present to assign any age to these 
implements, as the age of the gravel in which they were found has 
not yet been determined by geologists. 

Danish Bonlders. 

The investigation of the age of the boulders, as determining the 
existence of rocks intermediate in age between the Senionian of 
Jutland and the Lower Palaeozoic of Norway and Sweden, was first 
begun by Forchhammer about 1820. Of recent years Miss Ethel G. 
Skeat, of Cambridge, and Mr. Victor Madsen, of Copenhagen, have 
undertaken the investigation, and the results of their labours are now 
before us under the title of " On Jurassic, Neocomian, and Gault 
Boulders found in Denmark." The paper, which forms Part 8 of the 
second volume of Danmarks Geologishe Undersogelse, consists of 214 
pages, 8 plates, and a map. Forty-three boulders have been examined, 
and their fossil contents carefully described by the authors. They 
have been determined as follows: — 11 from the Lias, 1 from the 
Callovian, 24 from the Kimeridge-Portland series, 2 from the Neo- 
comian, and 4 from the Gault. The general conclusion supports 
Forchhammer's theory, and the boulders are considered evidence of 
former deposits to the north of Jutland and in the Skager Rack region. 

Coccospheres and Rhabdospheres. 

The nature of these bodies has been referred to in Natural Science from 
time to time, and we now have to record the appearance of the results 
of researches by Messrs. G. R. Murray and V. H. Blackman during a 
voyage to the West Indies in 1897. The authors agree with Haeckel 


in regarding these bodies as Algae, but consider that all Coccospheres 
belong to one genus only, the same applying equally to the Ehabdo- 
spheres. Both are now described as " free unicellular algae, provided 
with an outer covering of calcareous plates, free from, overlapping, or 
readily separable from each other, the plates characterised by sym- 
metrical excrescences or markings." Both are referred to the family 
Coccosphaeraceae, the Coccospheres being divided into two species — 
C. pclayica, Wallicli, and C. leptopora, n.sp. ; while the Bhabdospheres 
form JR. tubifera, n.sp., and JR. claviger, n.sp. Some beautiful figures 
by Mr. Highley accompany the paper, which is published in the Philo- 
sophical Transactions of the Royal Society, volume 190b. 

No Freaks. 

It is recorded in the daily press, whether accurately or otherwise con- 
cerns us little, that the divergent members of Barnum and Bailey's 
recently held a meeting, and drew up a memorial protesting against 
being called freaks. There are discontinuous variations among them, 
and some strange modifications, but no freaks. It is interesting to 
find that Dr. Hans Gadow of Cambridge has also been saying " no 
freaks." The original slight change in pigmentation which started the 
greenness of the tree-frog is not a spontaneous freak, as the Neo- 
Darwinians say ; it was caused, Dr. Gadow assures us, by the direct 
influence of the sunlight. But no experimental evidence of this is 

It seems late in the day to point out, as the author does,' that 
there is nothing spontaneous in the sense of being causeless ; or to 
emphasise against the "Neo- Darwinians the universally recognised 
truism that environmental stimuli must be antecedents of all varia- 
tions. But as the Neo-Darwinians include in their ranks not a few 
believers in definite variation — see even Weismann's "Germinal 
Selection,"- — we rather resent being told that we must choose between 
believing in the inheritance of modifications, which we should gladly 
do if we could find evidence, and believing that the raw material of 
evolution may be summed up in the word freaks. 

Dr. Gadow maintains that variations are as such •adaptive, that 
variation and adaptation are fundamentally the same — an interesting- 
antithesis to the equally extreme position of Virchow, that all varia- 
tions are pathological. The author reproaches the Neo-Darwinians 
for simply taking variations for granted, as if there had not been many 
attempts (in Cambridge and elsewhere) to find out something about 
their occurrence, their nature, and their possible origin. And the 
strange thing is, that after making this reproach, he himself goes one 
better in postulation, for he begs the question, as it seems to us, by 
assuming adaptation as a cause, and not a result. 

10S NOTES AND COMMENTS [fee. 1899 

More Misunderstandings of Weismann's Position. 

It seems as if we should do well to stereotype this heading. For the 
name of these misunderstandings is indeed legion, though Weismann's 
position is as clear as sunlight. In Haeckel's little book, entitled 
" The Lost Link," Dr. Hans Gadow returns to the charge against those 
who find themselves unable to discover any evidence of modification- 
inheritance. In his notes, which form almost half of the book, and 
no small part of its interest, the erudite morphologist of Cambridge 
champions Lamarckism. "The inheritance of acquired characters 
becomes very obvious," we read, "in the following example"; and 
being most open to conviction we hurry on breathlessly, to find that 
the offspring of Protomyxa aurantiaca (one of the simplest of the 
Myxomycetes, or slime-organisms) is as orange as its parent. Does 
Dr. Gadow really believe that this " example " has any bearing what- 
ever on the problem at issue ? Why not also cite the case of the 
orange-tree ? There is no evidence that the orange colour is an 
acquired character, and it is only with great difficulty that the con- 
ception can be applied to any unicellular organisms, where the dis- 
tinction between soma and germ-plasm is only incipient. 

Variation in Sea- Anemones. 

In continuation of our note in last number (p. 12) on variation in a 
sea-anemone (Metridium marginatum), it is of interest to record Mr. 
H. B. Torrey's observations (Proc. California Ac. Sci., 1898, i. pp. 345- 
360, 1 pi.) on M. fimhriatum, which is " practically identical " with the 
first-named species. Among 1971 specimens collected at random 48 
showed asexual reproduction (monogenesis), some being at the same 
time sexually mature. Three modes occur — longitudinal fission, basal 
fragmentation, and budding from oesophageal and foot regions. 
Parker's suggestion that the monoglyphic and diglyphic types of 
Metridium may be of the value of varieties, " the products one of the 
sexual, the other of the asexual mode of reproduction," is not corrobo- 
rated, for both types reproduce by fission, and both may result from 
fission. Indeed, of two buds which arose independently from a single 
basal fragment, one was monoglyphic, the other diglyphic. The 
variants are not varieties. 


On the Study of Plant Associations. 

By Eobert Smith, B.Sc. 

It has long been recognised that a close connection exists between 
the kind of vegetation of a country and the prevailing conditions of 
climate and soil, and that changes in the one, either in space or in 
time (phenology), bring about corresponding changes in the other. 
Thus many works on the flora of a region have been supplemented by 
a general account of the conspicuous vegetation in the landscape, the 
chief trees, the nature of the stations, etc., correlating this with the 
general climatic conditions of the region. This general account, at 
first vague and unmethodical, has gradually become more and more 
organised into a definite survey of the " Vegetation," as contrasted with 
the " Flora." Tor long it remained hardly more than a branch of 
descriptive geography, employed as indicative of the climate and 
economic wealth of a country, but within recent years the subject has 
assumed an important biological position, and now may be taken to 
represent a description of the relations which exist between the plant- 
coverino; of a region and the conditions of life. 

The floristic method of study, on the one hand, is more directly 
concerned with the historical development of the " flora." It attempts 
to answer the questions, How have these species originated ? or whence 
have they come ? It studies phylogeny and migration ; and the 
botanical characters to which it directs attention are those on which 
we chiefly rely for indications of racial affinity, namely, those of the 
floral organs. 

In considering the "vegetation," on the other hand, the essential 
characters of the species are those indicating adaptation to the environ- 
ment, and are to be found mainly in the vegetative organs. Hence 
groups of similar adaptational form, " Lebensform " of German authors, 
need by no means coincide with natural families or groups of species. 
For example, Empetrum and Erica, or Aloe and Agave, possess similar 
" life-forms," and could be grouped as Ericoid-forms and Aloe-forms 

8 NAT. St'. VOL. XIV. NO. 84. IOQ 

no ROBERT SMITH [february 

respectively, yet their floral characters indicate widely separate genetic 

Warming (1896) has recently subdivided the study of Plant Geo- 
graphy into two main branches based upon these two different points 
of view, flora and vegetation : — ■ 

(1) Floristic Plant Geography, which considers questions relating to 

origin, to past and present lines of migration — in short, to 
the distribution, past and present, of the species ; 

(2) Oecological Plant Geography, which considers the life-forms of 

species, their association, and their relations to the life-con- 
ditions (heat, light, moisture, food, etc.). 

The vegetation of any region is to be considered then as an associa- 
tion of plants bound together by the fact that they are all adapted to 
life in this region. The region may not be uniform throughout its 
whole area, but may include a great number of sub-associations, each 
characterised by certain forms of vegetation and determined by par- 
ticular conditions of life. 

Within each association there are various grades of successful 
adaptation, and accordingly we find that the plants group themselves 
as dominant, secondary, and isolated species. 

The study of the vegetation has thus become a study of plant 
associations — the life-forms which constitute them, the conditions 
which determine them, and the relations between them. 

The methods for this study are at present by no means well- 
defined, and probably from the nature of the subject will always remain 
more or less arbitrary. The differences in the methods employed by 
the various workers are largely due to the different standpoints from 
which they view the subject ; whether they regard the vegetation as 
a term in the description of the scenery, as an index to the meteoro- 
logical and soil conditions of the country, or as an association of living- 
organisms. This last aspect is the true biological one, and has steadily 
gained ground within recent years. 

The first attempt to organise the study of " vegetation " was made 
by Humboldt in 1806. Before his time travellers had employed 
the dominant features of vegetation in describing the landscapes they 
had viewed. Humboldt tried to make these descriptions systematic. 
From the experience he gained in his wide travels he enumerated the 
following plant-forms as dominant in different landscapes^: — palm, 
banana, cactus, orchid, mallow, bamboo, mimosa, aloe, grass, fern, lily, 
willow, myrtle, melastoma, and laurel. He further noted the variations 
in the proportions of the individuals of different species, how some 
were social and some isolated (1807, p. 15); and in his definition of 
the scope of plant geography he says, " C'est cette science qui considere 
les vegetaux sous les rapports de leur association locale dans les differens 


cliraats" (1807, p. 14). In his classical essay (1807), where he 
treats of the vegetation of Chimborazo, he shows how the differences in 
the plant-life at different elevations are dependent upon corresponding- 
differences in temperature, humidity, barometric pressure, etc. 

A. Pyr. de Candolle (1820) recognised the importance of noting 
all these facts of association. In his scheme for a flora of the valley 
of the Lake of Geneva he indicates the following amongst the facts 
which should be ascertained : — 

"5°, La station, c'est-a-dire, la nature speciale des localites 
relativement a la nature du sol, a son inclinaison, a son arrosement ; 
la nature et la temperature des eaux ; l'eclairement ou l'obscurite, etc. 

6°, Ses varietes locales, c'est-a-dire, les changemens de formes 
observees dans les limites adoptees et leurs rapports s'il en est avec 
les localites. 

8°, L' indication du degre de sa rarete" ou de son abondance, le role 
qu'elle joue comme support, appui, ou ennemi des autres vegetaux, la 
designation de la plante comme eparse ou sociale ; enfin, l'indication 
des especes avec lesquelles elle a coutume a vivre." 

This attempt to include all the observations on the distribution of 
the species in a flora has, so far as we know, not been carried out, 
since it was soon recognised, that many of the facts could from their 
nature be more conveniently recorded and studied apart from the 
" flora." 

Grisebach (1838) more fully organised the methods for describing 
the physiognomy of the landscape, and for this purpose introduced the 
new term " pnanzengeographische Formation." A plant " formation," 
according to him, is a group of plants, such as a wood or a meadow, 
which forms a distinct and complete feature of the landscape. It may 
be characterised by one social species (a pine wood), by a group of 
similar social species (a pasture), or by an aggregate of species of 
manifold organisation, but having one general and conspicuous 
characteristic (an alpine meadow where all the plants are perennial 

Thurmann (1849, p. 22) distinguishes between the flora and the 
vegetation of a country ; after discussing the scope of each method of 
study he sums up as follows : " La Flore s'entend surtout du nombre 
des formes vegetales distinctes qu'on y observe, la Vegetation de leurs 
proportions et de leur association." He and other contemporaneous 
students of the relations between the plants and the subjacent soil 
(such as Unger, von Mohl, Sendtner, etc.) were well aware of the 
fact that slight differences in the soil conditions give corresponding 
differences in the frequency of the species growing there, and they 
employed a series of terms from social to isolated to indicate this. 

Alph. de Candolle (1855) attempted to answer the question 
why some species are social and others not. This, according to him, 
is due to two causes : — 

H2 ROBERT SMITH [February 

(1) The constitution of each species, some being able to crush out 
their neighbours in virtue of certain characteristics such as rapid 
growth, long duration, quick germination, shade, etc. 

(2) The particular conditions of each station. He remarks, too, 
how many species have the social habit, even to the limits of their 
area of distribution, where they disappear suddenly and new forms 
take their place. He reasons that purely local causes seem to be 
of much more importance than general climatic conditions in 
determining the abundance of the individuals of a species at any 
particular point. It is owing to this fact that the study of social 
species is valuable in topographical botany. He also calls attention, 
as Humboldt had done before, to the difference between such a case 
as that of a northern pine forest, where one species is dominant, even 
to the exclusion of others, and such a case as a tropical forest, 
where a certain normal character is given by a mixture of many 
associated species. 

Thus the scope of the subject had been foreseen and discussed by 
the middle of the century, but as yet its interest was almost purely 
geographical, and the biological element was hardly touched upon. 

With Darwin a new period in natural science began. He directed 
attention upon organisms in nature, how they are adapted to their life, 
and how they struggle for existence. Since 1859 a steady stream of 
works have appeared treating of the anatomical and physiological 
characters of plants in relation to their habitat. In the bibliography 
at the end of this paper a few only of the chief of these have been 
mentioned as representative oecological works, dealing with such marked 
forms of vegetation as strand plants, acuiatic plants, halophytes, desert 
plants, etc. (see List B). Such close associations as exist between 
symbions, and between parasites, epiphytes, and climbing plants and 
their hosts, have already an extensive literature devoted to them. The 
associations of plants and animals, especially plants and insects, have 
occupied the time of many investigators, even to the neglect of the 
more general study of plant association. 

The first to apply the new ideas to the description of the vegeta- 
tion of a particular region was Kerner (1863) in his work on the 
plant-life of the basin of the Danube. After describing the general 
characters of the region, he represents the vegetation as being made 
up of a number of " formations " (as defined by Grisebach), each 
" formation " characterised by some definite species (one or more), 
possessing adaptations which enable it to suit the particular conditions 
of environment and to dominate in the landscape. Thus the first steps 
of the method were : — 

(1) To describe the general characters of vegetation. 

(2) To enumerate the leading plant "formations" of the region 

and the plants which dominate in each. 



(3) To describe the life-conditions of each " formation," and the 
forms of vegetation characteristic of it, — whether trees (with 
evergreen, needle-shaped, or deciduous leaves), shrubs, grasses, 
herbs (perennial or annual), thallophytes, etc. 

Grisebach (1872) brought out his great work "Die Vegetation der 
Erde," in which he employs the same methods for the description of 
the plant-life of the whole globe. For this purpose he drew up a 
scheme of 54 plant-forms to indicate the characters of vegetation of 
each " formation." His classification was still on the whole geographical, 
for his " formations " were defined as subdivisions of the landscape 
(" pflanzengeographische Gliederungen der Landschaft "), and his "forms" 
as the adaptational forms of plant-life most conspicuous in the land- 

Eeiter (1885) modified Grisebach's scheme of plant-forms to 
reconcile it with later research in plant oecology. But all such 
classifications must remain more or less artificial, until we understand 
more about the nature of these " adaptations." Experimental and 
histological work on the subject, like that of Vesque, etc. (see List B), 
must be the basis upon which a true classification can be raised. 

Drude (1888) introduced the terms now usually employed to 
indicate the relative frequency of species in a plant "formation." The 
term " social " is applied to the dominant species, whose individuals 
are so numerous that they seem to cover the whole of the ground, e.g. 
the heather on a moor. " Gregarious " plants are those which live in 
groups or patches in a " formation," e.g. Anemone ncmorosa in a wood. 
The other terms " copiously intermixed," " sparsely intermixed," and 
" solitary " explain themselves. Pound and Clements (1898) point out 
how often the eye may be deceived with regard to the relative value 
of the secondary species of a " formation," and they advocate the 
actual counting of the individual plants within type plots. Blomqvist 
(1879) for a similar purpose has attempted a graphic method of 
representing the secondary species in a formation, by mapping typical 
small areas on a large scale. 

Thus methods were becoming well-organised, and several important 
applications of them had been attempted, — in this connection "Das 
Pfljinzenleben der Schweiz " (1879), by Dr. Christ should especially 
be noted. 

But the term " formation " was found to be insufficiently defined, 
and it came to have a different meaning with different authors. The 
"formations" described as units by Grisebach (1872 and 1875) were 
split up into finer and finer divisions according to the minuteness of 
the study given to them. Thus Hult (1881) has described almost 
fifty for Finland alone. To distinguish them he employed a system 
of nomenclature which is now frequently adopted, where each 
" formation " is called after the dominant species with the termination 

ii4 ROBERT SMITH [February 

-etum, e.g. Callunetum, Pinetum, etc. Celakovsky (1869) called by the 
same term, " formation," groups of species of similar habit, station, and 
distribution, which could be regarded as having migrated together into 
the country ; he thus gave the word " formation " a meaning in floristic 
plant geography. Drude (1889) attempted to compromise by dis- 
tinguishing the smaller " formations " as " Bestande," and Weber 
(1892) similarly classified them as primary and secondary 
" formations." The original definition of the term by Grisebach as a 
division of the landscape had lost its force from the newer biological 
way of regarding the "formation." It was now no longer strictly 
comparable to a geological formation, and could only in an indirect 
way be regarded as something " formed." 

From the nature of the object sharp definition is impossible. 
Warming (1896) has recommended the disuse of the term; in its 
wide sense he says that its meaning can be quite well expressed by 
the word " Vegetation," and for groups of plants associated together 
by common habits he employs the term " Pflanzenverein " (in Danish 
" Plantesamfund "). In English we have named these unions or 
communities " Plant Associations," as expressing the nature of the 
relationship of the plants to each other. This expression is employed 
in a similar sense in papers by Flahault (1897 a), Schroeter (1894), 
Schneider (1897), etc. 1 

An association may be as narrow as that between two symbions, 
or as wide as the entire vegetation of the globe. In the description 
of the vegetation of any region it depends entirely upon how detailed 
a survey is intended, how many associations it may be subdivided into ; 
if only a general survey, then only the chief and conspicuous associa- 
tions in the landscape may be treated of, if a complete survey, then all 
down to the very smallest subdivisions await research. The complete 
knowledge of the " Vegetation " of any country demands such a 
complete survey. The methods organised for the study of " formations " 
apply equally well to " associations," since the " formations " selected 
are always particular instances of association. 

These methods for the description of the " Vegetation " of a country 
can now be summarised. We require to know : — 

(a) The chief associations into which it may be divided. 

(b) The particular conditions of heat, light, moisture, and food 

distinguishing each association. 

(c) The particular adaptations or life-forms of the species of each 


(d) The relations between the species — 

(1) Dominant social forms. 

1 One must point out, however, that the word " Pflanzenassociation " has sometimes heen 
used by Loew (1879), Hock (1895), and some other authors with a special meaning in 
Holistic plant geography, similar to the application of the term " formation " by Celakovsky 
as mentioned above. 


(2) Secondary social forms struggling for dominance. 

(3) Dependent species — simply protected by the presence 

of the dominant species, or living upon the humus 
they form, or parasitic upon them, etc. 

(e) The influence of animals and of man upon c and d. 

(/) The general conditions of climate and of vegetation of the 
region compared with other regions. 

A concrete example of a brief survey of a type region will illustrate 
the application of these methods. 1 For this purpose I have chosen 
such an area as may be found in many places round the coast of 
Britain, namely, a stretch of sand dunes and links, the present example 
being from the Ayrshire coast, between Prestwick and Troon. 

The small associations are numerous, but I select only the more 
important for the purposes of illustration. These are the strand plants, 
the dune bents, the grassy links, the heathy knolls, and the pine woods. 
If expressed in terms of the most important species of each, these 
would be respectively the associations dominated by Atriplex, Ammo- 
phila, Agrostis i Calluna, and Pinus. 

The strand plants {Atriplex, Gakile, Salsola) are on loose shifting 
sand, occasionally submerged by spring-tides, and beaten upon by the 
wind. They are all annuals (cp. the great proportion of annuals to be 
found on the regularly overturned earth of cultivated land) ; recumbent 
in habit, thus spreading over the loose sand, holding it together and 
escaping the full force of the wind ; succulent, an adaptation connected 
with presence of much salt ; and their surfaces are reduced in extent 
or otherwise modified to prevent excessive transpiration. On the 
strand competition between the species is almost absent, for so few can 
live at all in these conditions that each plant has a free space of 
ground to itself. Human influence has not appreciably modified the 

The dunes are beyond the reach of the waves, but are exposed to 
the fury of the wind, to drought, and to the moving of the sand. The 
dune plants are adapted in various ways to withstand excessive 
transpiration. Some are also salt-loving species, such as Ammophila, 
Elymus, Agropyron junceum, Eryngium maritimum, Arenaria peploides, 
Volvulus Soldanella, etc. The dominant and by far the most abundant 
species is Ammophila arenaria, which grows in great tussocks, holding 
the sand together, and sheltering from the full force of the wind 
numerous more delicate species that occur sparsely distributed on the 
dunes. The conditions are still too hard to allow a large flora, and 
competition between the species is almost at its minimum. Except 

1 For the present purpose, as will be clear, we are not concerned with how the plants 
came into this region, but with how they live^ there. The study of the immigrations of the 
British Flora has such an interest from its complex and striking nature that it has long 
attracted students. It is partly due to this that the oecological standpoint we are now 
assuming has received comparatively little attention. 

n6 ROBERT SMITH [February 

in so far that a number of the casual plants in this association are 
weeds of cultivation, man has not modified it much. 

The grassy links are on low -lying, more sheltered, and better 
irrigated parts, but still exposed to the sweep of the winds. The 
grasses (Agrostis, Air a, etc.) and herbs inhabiting the ground are 
perennials — low -growing, turf - forming, wiry species. Competition 
between the members is very severe, and very few plants can fight 
their way through the close turf which covers the ground. Sheep 
are pastured on the links, and rabbits in abundance nibble there. Only 
such species can exist that withstand this continual cropping. The 
manure from the animals enriches the soil, and here and there enables 
finer species of grass, clover, etc., to enter. 

The association of Calluna is especially found on the dry, mossy 
knolls, where variations of water-supply must be considerable. The 
adaptations of Calluna, Erica, etc., to these severe conditions of life 
are well known. 1 This association is not particularly well developed 
upon the Ayrshire links compared with other similar stations where 
the association is protected and increased by being regularly burned 
by man. The immediate effect of burning is usually to allow a growth 
of grasses, Vaccinium Myrtillus, or other plants — secondary social 
species, which for a while dominate — but later the young heather 
comes up and peoples the area more fully than before. 

The pine wood may be regarded as the natural arborescent vegeta- 
tion of the fixed dunes or links, although here the present woods have 
certainly been planted by man. But if grazing animals are excluded, 
seedlings spring up naturally — as can be seen in some parts of those 
woods — so that when the wood becomes old, its vegetation is essentially 
that of a naturally-sown wood. Its situation includes ground similar 
to the grassy links and to the heathy knolls, and since these particular 
woods are fairly well lit, the subordinate vegetation is in part similar 
to that of these exposed stations. The pine association is complicated 
in its constitution. Sub-associations, dominated over by Betula, Rubus, 
Uler,, Calluna, various grasses, etc., occur in its clearings or under its 
canopy, according to the differences in degree of moisture, shade, or 
humus. Quite a hierarchy of forms can be grouped as constituting 
this association: — trees, shrubs, herbs, mosses, and thallophytes — each 
forming a different layer of vegetation. Certain forms characteristic of 
woods are present : — saprophytes and shade plants (Goodycra vcpens) ; 
climbing plants (Lonicera pcriclymcnum) ; epiphytes (lichens and 
occasionally Polypodium mrtgarc), etc. 

The classification of plant associations has recently been carefully 
considered by Warming (1896). He points out how the state of 

1 See Professor L. C. Miall, "A Yorkshire Moor," Nature, vol. Iviii., August 1898, 
pp. 377-380 and 401-404. 


moisture is on the whole the most important condition in determining 
any particular association, and he employs this as the chief basis of his 
classification. He groups the plant associations as follows : — 

Hydrophyte vegetation. — This requires a substratum with at least 
80 per cent of water. It includes associations of aquatic and 
marsh plants. 

Xerophyte vegetation. — This is the opposite extreme from the 
previous class, requiring less than 10 per cent of water. It 
includes associations of rock, desert, moor plants, etc. 

Halophyte vegetation. — Also an extreme vegetation, allied in many 
of its adaptations and habits to the Xerophyte vegetation, 
but characterised by requiring the presence of much salt, for 
instance the strand and the dune associations. 

Mesophyte vegetation. — An intermediate class adapted to medium 
conditions of moisture, and not requiring a special amount of 
salt, for instance the associations of beech and oak woods. 

For further subdivisions of these four classes we refer to Warming's 
original work. 

In employing this classification it is essential to remember that 
variation in humidity is not the only acting condition, — the species 
are very differently adapted for the struggle with each other, even if 
the acting conditions are uniform ; the nature of the food supply in 
the soil varies from place to place, and each variation may more or less 
affect the association ; local conditions of light and shade, e.g. in the 
woods, modify the minor grouping of the species ; and further, all the 
species are dependent upon the wider conditions of light and of 
temperature of the particular region of the globe. A similar physio- 
logical method of grouping plants to this of Warming was suggested 
by Alphonse de Candolle (1874), based upon the combined con- 
ditions of heat and moisture. Its application to the graphic repre- 
sentation of the vegetation of the globe will be seen in maps by Engler 
(1879) and Drude (1887). 

The methods for the detailed mapping of the vegetation of a 
country have recently been greatly advanced by the labours of Pro- 
fessor Flahault of Montpellier (1897 b), who has shown the possibility 
of a very exact botanical survey, applicable to the consideration of 
questions of botanical geography, meteorology, geology, forestry, and 
agriculture. Briefly stated, the method consists in recording, by 
means of a large-scale contour map, the exact range over the country 
of certain representative plant associations. The selected associations 
are naturally as large and well defined as can be found ; in this case, 
where Southern France has been studied, the dominant trees have 

n8 ROBERT SMITH [February 

been chosen. Already a large district has been surveyed, and in 1897 
the first sheet was published. It is the region of the Eastern 
Pyrenees, and shows clearly the areas in which the following trees 
respectively dominate : — evergreen oak, cork oak, ordinary oak, chest- 
nut, beech, maritime pine, Austrian pine, Scots pine, silver fir, and 
mountain pine. 


A. — General Works referred to in the Text, relating to the Growth and 
Methods of the Study of Plant Associations. 

1806. Humboldt, Alex, von, "Ideen zu einer Physiognomik der Gewachse," Tiibingen, 
1806. See also his "Aspects of Nature" (trans, by Mrs. Sabine), vol. ii. 1849. 

1807. et Bonpland, " Essai sur la geographie des plantes," Paris. 

1820. De Candolle, A. P., " Projet d'une Flore physico-geographique de la vallee de 

Leman," Geneve. 
1838. Grisebach, A., " Ueber d. Einfluss d. Klimas auf die Begrenzung d. natiirlichen 

Floren," Linnaca, xii. pp. 159-200. 
1849. Thurmann, J., " Essai de phytostatique appl. a la cbaine du Jura, etc." Berne. 
1855. De Candolle, Alph., "Geographie Botanique raisonnee," Paris et Geneve. 
1863. Keener von Makilaun, A., "Das Pflanzenleben der Donaulander. 
1869. Celakovsky, L., "Prodr. d. Flora Bohmens," (cited from Loew [1879]), 1869-74. 
1872. Grisebach, A., "Die Vegetation der Erde," Leipzig. 

1874. De Candolle, Alph., " Constitution dans le regne vegetal de groupes physiolog- 
iques applicables a la geographie botanique ancienne et moderne," Arch. Sci. phys. 
nat., 1874. 

1875. Griseijach, A., " Pflanzengeographie " (in Neumayer, Anlcitung zu vnsscnsch. Bco- 
bachtung auf Bcisen, 1. Aufl., pp. 333-358, Berlin). 

1879. Loew, " Ueber Perioden und Wege ehemaliger Pflanzemvanderungen im norddeut- 

schen Tieflande," Linnaca, xlii. p. 592. 
1879. Blomqvist, A. G., " Eine neue Methode den Holzwuchs und die Standortsvegeta- 

tion bildlich darzustellen," Bidrag till kdnncdom af Finlands natur och folk, etc., 

xxxi. pp. 145-153, Helsingibrs. 
1879. Engleii, A., " Versuch einer Entwicklungsgesch. d. Pflanzenwelt," Leipzig, 1879 

and 1882. 
1881. Hult, R., " Forsok till en analytisk behandlung af vaxtformationerna," Medd. Soc. 

Faun. Flora fennica, viii. 
1885. Reiteb, H., "Die Consolidation der Physiognomik," Graz. 
1887. Drude, O., " Atlas der Pflanzenverbreitung, " Gotha. 

1887. Kekner von Marilaun, A., "Pflanzenleben," Leipzig, 1887 and 1891. English 
edition, "Natural History of Plants," London, 1894 (see especially vol. ii. pp. 885- 

1888. Dkude, O., "Pflanzengeographie" (in Neumayer, Anlcitung zu wissensch. 
Beobachtung auf Bciscn, 2. Aufl. Band. II.). 

1889. "Ueber d. Principien in der Unterscheidung von Vegetationsformationen," 

Bot. Jahrb. xi. 

1890. " Handbuch der Pflanzengeographie," Stuttgart (new edition in French, Paris, 


1892. Weber, C, "Ueber d. Zusamniensetzung des natiirlichen Graslandes in West- 
holstein," etc., Schr. nat. Ver. Schleswig-Holstein, ix. pp. 179-217. 

1894. Schiueteii, C, "Associations de Plantes en Yalois," Bull. Soc. Bot. France, xli. 
p. ccexxii. 

1895. Hock, F., " Genossenschaften in unserer Kiefernwaldflora," Nat. Wochenschrift, 
No. 19, p. 227, 12 Mai. 

1896. Warming, E., " Lehrbuch d. okologischen Pflanzengeographie," (German edition 
by Knoblauch), Berlin. 

1897. Schneider, A., "The Phenomena of Symbiosis," Minnesota Bot. Studies, Bull. 9, 
No. xlix., pp. 923-948. 

1897a. Flahault, Ch., "Flore de la Vallee de Barcelonnette " (Soc. Bot. France, Session 
extraordinaire Aout 1897, Notices publiees par le Comite local d'organisation, pji. 17- 
58), Montpellier, 1897. 

1897b. "Essai d'une Carte Botanique et Forestiere de la France," Ami. Giogr. vi. 

pp. 289-312, pi. viii. 

1898. Pound, R., and Clements, F. E., "A Metbod of Determining the Abundanee of 
Secondary Species," Minnesota Bot. Studies, 2nd Ser. Part I. No. II. pp. 19-24. 


B. — Representative Works on Plant Oecology. 

(Only a very few have been selected from the extensive literature on this subject ; 
most of them contain bibliographical lists, and can thus serve as guides to other works). 

Areschoug, F., "Die Einfluss des Klimas auf die Organisation der Pflanze, insbesondere 
auf die anatomische Struktur des Blattorgane," Bot. Jahrb. ii. p. 511-526, 1882. 

" Beitriige zur Biologie der geophilen Pflanzen," Ltmds Univ. Arsskrift, xxxi. ]>. 

107, 1895). 

Goebel, K., "Pflanzenbiologische Schilderungen," Marburg, 1889-1893. 

Johow, Fr., "Ueber d. Beziehungen einiger Eigenschat'ten der Laubblatter zu den 

Standortverhaltnissen," Jahrb. wiss. Bot. xv. p. 282, 1884. 
Schenk, H., "Die Biologie der Wassergewachse," Bonn, 1886. 
Stahl, "Einiger Versuch liber Transpiration und Assimilation," Bot. Zeitung, vol. Hi. 

pp. 117-143, 1894. 
Tschirch, A., "Ueber einige Beziehungen des anatomischen Baues der Assimilations- 

organe zu Klima und Standort," Linnaea, xliii. pp. 139-252, 1882. 
Vesque, J., "L'Espece Vegetale consideree an point de vue de l'Anatomie comparee," 

Ann. Sci. Nat., Ser. 6, tome xiii. p. 5, 1882. 
Volkens, " Zur Kenntniss der Beziehungen zwischen Standort und anatomischem Ban 

der Vegetationsorgane," Jahrb. Berlin Bot. Garten, iii. 1884. 
Warming, E., "Lagoa Santa. Et Bidrag til den biologiske Plantegeografi," Danske 

Vid. Selsk. Skr. 6, Raekke, vi. 1892. Resume in Rev. gen. Bot. v. 1893, pp. 145- 

158 and 209-223. 

■ "Halofyt-Studier," ibid. viii. pp. 175-272, 1897. 

See also works by Reiter (1885), Kerner (1887), and Warming (1896), in List A. 

[ ] C. — Representative Regional Works concerned with Plant Associations 


Andersson, N". J., " Apercu de la Vegetation et des Plantes cultivees de la Suede," 

Stockholm, 1867. 
Beck, G., " Flora von Niederosterreich," 1890-93. 
Blytt, A., " Essay on the Immigration of the Norwegian Flora during alternating Rainy 

and Dry Periods," Christiania, 1876. 
Borggreve, B., "Ueber die Heide," Abh. nat. Ver. Bremen, iii. pp. 217-250, 1873. 

"Heide und Wald," Berlin, 1889. 

Christ, H., "Das Pflanzenleben der Schweiz," 1879 (French edition, "La Flore de la 
Suisse," Geneve, 1883). 

Drude, 0., " Deutschlands Pflanzengeographie," Part I. Stuttgart, 1895. 

Erikson, Joh., "Studier ofver sandfloran i ostra Skane," Svenska Ac. Bih. xxii., 78 p. 
2 Taf., Stockholm, 1896. 

Fischer-Benzon, "Die Moore der Provinz Schleswig-Holstein," Abh. Nat. Ver. Ham- 
burg, xi. 1891). 

Flahaiilt, Ch., "La Distribution Geographique des Vegetaux dans un Coin du Langue- 
doc," Montpellier, 1893. 

Graebner, P., "Studien iiber die norddeutsche Heide," Bot. Jahrb., xx. 1895. 

Hock, F., " Begleitpflanzen der Kiefer in Norddeutschland," Ber. Deutsch. Bot. Ges. xi. 
pp. 242-248, 1893. 

" Brandenburger Buchenbegleiter," Verh. bot. Ver. Brandenburg, xxxvi. pp. 7-50, 


Hult, R. et Hjelt, Hj., " Vegetationen och floran i en del af Kemi Lappmark och Norra 

Osterbotten," Medd. Soc. Fauna Flora fennica, xii. 1885. 
Hult, R., "Die alpinen Pfianzenformationen des nordbstlichen Finlands," ibid., xiv. pp. 

153-228, 1887. 
Kerner von Marilaun, A., " Oesterreich-Ungarns Pflanzenwelt," Vienna, 1886. (See 

also List A, 1863). 
Kihlman, A. 0., "Pflanzenbiologische Studien aus Russich-Lapland," Acta Soc. Fauna 

Flora fennica, vi. pp. viii. and 264, 1890. (Abstract in Flora, lxxv.) 
Krause, E. H. L., "Die Heide," Bot. Jahrb., xiv. 1892. 
Magnin, A., "Recherches sur la Vegetation des Lacs du Jura," Rev. gen. Bot., v. pp. 

241-257 and 303-316, 1893. 

"Contributions a la Connaissance de la Flore des Lacs du Jura Suisse, Bull. Soc. 

bot. France, xli. p. cviii. 1894. 

Pax, F., "Grundziige der Pflanzenverbreitung in den Karpathen," Leipzig, 1898. 
Smith, R., "Plant Associations of the Tay Basin," Proc. Perthshire Soc. Nat. Sci., 

vol. ii. part vi. pp. 200-217, 1898. 
Stebler und Schroeter, " Beitrage zur Kenntniss der Matten und Weiden der 

Schweiz." Landwirtsch . Jahrb. Schweiz, x. 1892. 

i2o ROBERT SMITH [feb. 1899 

Stenkoos, K. E., '' Nurmijarven pitajan siemen-ja saniaiskasvisto, " Ada Soc. Fauna 
Flora fcimica, ix. 1894. (Abstract in Just's Bot. Jahrbcr, 1895, Ab. ii. p. 246.) 

"Das Tierleben in Nurmijarvi-see, mit 3 Tal'eln und 1 Karte," ibid., xiii. 1898. 

(The author attempts to show the relation between the distribution of the animal and 

the plant life of the lake.) 
Warming, E., "Om Gronlands Vegetation," Mcclcl. Gronland, xii. [with resume in 
French, pp. 225-245], Kjobenhavn, 1888. (Abstract in German in Bot. Jahrb., x. 
p. 364, 1888.) 

" De psammophile V.egetationer i Danmark," Vid. Medd. nat. Forcn. Kjobenhavn, 


— " Excursionen til Skagen i Juli, 1896," Bot. Tidsskr, 21 Bind, i. Haefte, pp. 59-112. 
Kjobenhavn, 1897. 

" Botaniske Excursioner, 3. Skarridso," Vid. Medd. nat. Forcn. Kjobenhavn, pp. 164- 

197, 1897. 

Weber, C, "Ueber d. Zusammensetzung des naturlichen Graslandes in Westholstein, 
etc." (Schr. nat. Ver. Kchlesivig-Holstein, ix. pp. 179-217, 1892.) 

To the above bibliography there must now be added Prof. Schimper's " Pflanzen- 
geographie auf physiologischer Grundlage " (Jena, 1898). This splendid work, 
received since the above paper was in type, presents a comprehensive account of the 
vegetation of the Globe from the oecological standpoint. 

University College, Dundee. 

Mimetic Resemblances in Animals and Plants. 
By Key. Prof. George Henslow, M.A. 

Insufficiency of Natural Selection. 

Mimetic resemblances in animals, either to others or to objects in 
their natural environments, are mostly regarded as protective ; and 
this feature of protection has been assumed to be their rationale, or, 
in a sense, the " cause " of their existence. Darwinians assume that 
the animals which resemble their neighbours, by possessing a similar 
coloration and by adopting similar habits, are the result of the survival 
of the fittest, all others insufficiently resembling the protectors, i.e. 
all " unfavourable variations," having been killed off by natural 

Thus, Professor E. B. Poulton has lately published a paper on 
"Natural Selection, the Cause of Mimetic Resemblances and Common 
Warning Colours " ; 1 but in no part of it does he explain how natural 
selection can be " a cause." If he use the term metaphorically, it is 
misleading, for the other hypotheses mentioned in the paper do profess 
to supply actual physical causes, viz. " the direct effect " of the 
external conditions of life, or an " internal developmental cause." 
Natural selection is not " a cause " in any physical sense whatever. 
It only means, according to Darwin, "the preservation of favourable 
individual differences and variations, and the destruction of those 
which are injurious. This (he says) I have called Natural Selection, 
or the Survival of the Fittest." 2 On several occasions Professor 
Poulton discards all other hypotheses, and says, " Under the theory 
of natural selection the facts at once receive an explanation." Un- 
doubtedly they may ; if only its supposed powers were true and not 
imaginary. Natural Selection seems not unlike the wand of the fairy, 
which could evolve a coach and six out of a pumpkin and mice. 
But, in fact, all that it can tell us is, that some beings live and others 
die. It can neither account for the physical cause of a useful variation 
in one organism, nor say why another organism dies. It only, so to 
say, registers the fact. 

1 Jouni. Lin. Soc. (Zool. ) xxvi. 1898, p. 558. 

- "Origin of Species," p. 63. 


122 GEORGE HEN SLOW [February 

What, however, I wish to call attention to is, that mimetic 
resemblances cover a far wider field than that occupied by protective 
resemblances among insects. In fact, it is equally common in the 
vegetable kingdom, as it probably is in all classes of animals. 

Protection not ahoays associated with Mimicry. 

Protection is no doubt a benefit, but it does not appear to be 
always associated with mimicry. It is questionable how far the 
effect is useful when all the animals of a district are coloured alike, as 
in a sandy desert ; for not only are the carnivorous animals tawny 
coloured, but so are their prey, as may be seen in the collection in the 
entrance hall of the British Museum (Natural History Department), 
to which might be added a spider and Helix desertorum noticed by the 
present writer near Cairo. 

It would seem more probable that there has been some general 
cause in the physical environment. The monochromatic light suggests 
itself as a cause acting upon all the creatures alike which are subjected 
to it ; and if the result prove to be advantageous, so much the better 
for the creatures. That this is the right direction to look for a 
solution of such mimicry as superficial colouring, appears to be evident 
from the case of the house-mouse, which Mr. H. Lyster Jameson has 
described. 1 This author also speaks of " natural selection . . . weeding 
out unfavourable variations," but he does not appear to have met with 
any actual cases. He gives a list of thirty-six mice examined, but 
they range from the common domestic form to the palest-coloured 
of all. The variations, according to his description, are all in one 
direction towards a rufous or fulvous gray. In fact, they form a 
graduated series, but there is no mention of injurious varieties ; indeed, 
after about one hundred years there are still some 14 per cent of the 
ordinary mouse-coloured forms still extant. And as the island is fully 
stocked (a female can give rise to nine at a birth), it is obvious that 
the sandy-coloured mice are as easily killed off as the others. The 
fact seems to be that as long as an animal coloured like the ground is 
at rest it cannot readily be seen, but when it moves there is little 
difficulty about it. 

That natural selection cannot be a universal cause of mimetic 
coloration is obvious from the fact that some animals change from 
brown to white in winter, and many change according to the sur- 
roundings in which they happen to occur, as in the most familiar case 
of the chameleon, and a remarkable tick described by Sir J. D. 
Hooker, who says, speaking of a lizard — " Its throat was mottled with 
scales of brown and yellow. Three ticks had fastened on it, each of a 
size covering three or four scales : the first was yellow, corresponding 

1 "On a Probable Case of Protective Coloration in the House-Mouse {Mus musculus, 
L. )," Journ. Linn. Soc. (Zool.) xxvi. 1898, p. 465. 


with the yellow colour of the animal's belly, where it lodged ; the 
second brown, from the lizard's head ; but the third, which was 
clinging to the parti-coloured scales of the neck, had its body parti- 
coloured, the hues corresponding with the individual scales which they 
covered. The adaptation of the two first specimens in colour to the 
parts to which they adhered is sufficiently remarkable, but the third 
case was most extraordinary." 1 

Without explaining how " the trick is done," the word " adaptation " 
seems best serviceable, both for mimetic coloration and mimetic forms. 
Thus, taking the Australian marsupials as examples, we have the 
well-known imitations of placental Mammals occurring among them 
as a result of similar habits, but certainly not of protection arising 
from similarity. Thus, Andrew Murray observes how " Antechinus 
minutissimus, the kangaroo mouse, closely mimics Mus clelicatulus ; 
the flying Marsupial Petaurus is a close counterpart in outward appear- 
ance of some of the flying squirrels. One or two of the Phascogales or 
Antechini resemble the jerboa ; Peragalea lagotis has considerable 
resemblance to a hare, and carries its habits as well as its ears, 
making a form in the grass like it." 2 

That similar usages have educed similar structures, without affinity, 
is seen in cases where only certain parts of animals are mimetic. Thus 
the paddle of a whale resembles that of the Ichthyosaurus, and its tail 
that of a homocercal fish-tail, though it lies in a horizontal plane 
instead of a vertical one. Such resemblances are too numerous to 
mention ; but there is no question of protective resemblances or of 
natural selection in the matter. 

Inductive evidence of this kind brings us to the inevitable con- 
clusion, not only that like causes have produced similar results, but 
that they are the direct outcome of the joint action of the outward 
physical conditions of life and the inward adaptive powers of proto- 
plasm, coupled with the habits of life. Beyond that we do not seem 
capable of going. 

Mimicry in Plants. 

Objections have been raised as to the applicability of the term 
" mimicry " to animals, and so a fortiori in regard to plants ; for the 
word originally meant an actual imitation by a human being in gesture 
and manner. It might be conscious as in dumb-show, or unconscious 
as under delirium. 

Now in mimetic insects the mimicry consists in the form and 
colour resembling others of no affinity, or in being like external objects, 
as well as in the adoption of similar habits. Thus, in the case of the 
" stick " insects, it is said that they allow their legs to assume un- 
sym metrical positions when at rest, so as to resemble a branch with 

1 "Himalayan Journals" (Minerva ed. p. 26). 
2 "The Geographical Distribution of Mammals," p. 53. 

i2 4 GEORGE HENSLOW [fbbkuaet 

twigs more exactly. If so, there is both an unconsciously acquired 
resemblance in form and a conscious mimicry in action. 

If, therefore, mimicry has been thus allowed to have its meaning- 
extended to include a superficial or structural resemblance in animals, 
often apart from imitation in habit, we are quite justified in applying 
it to plants, among which such resemblances abound. 

In the vegetable kingdom it arises from common causes and issues 
in common uses. 

Mimetic resemblances are particularly characteristic of plants 
growing in very specialised environments, such as under water ; in 
high alpine, arctic, or antarctic regions ; in deserts and arid countries, 
etc. ; as well as of plants which are highly specialised for carrying on 
certain peculiar functions, as of insectivorous, climbing, parasitic 
plants, etc. 

In all these the same functions have resulted respectively in pro- 
ducing similar structures. In other words, whether one studies the 
external mimetic morphology or internal anatomy, the conclusion 
appears to be inevitable that these imitative features are simply due 
to the direct action of the environment, together with the responsive 
powers of protoplasm ; though one cannot explain how the process is 

Aquatic Types. — Commencing with submerged leaves, the type 
of foliage most common in dicotyledons is finely dissected, though 
as soon as the stem reaches the surface of the water it may develop 
more or less lobed or entire leaves, as may be seen in Ranunculus 
heterophyllus and the water-lily. 

Now this type is imitated by many aquatic plants of no affinity, 
as in Cabomba (Nymphaeaceae), Myriophyllum (Halorageae), Hottonia 
(Primulaceae), Apium inundatum (Umbelliferae), Ceratophyllum (Cera- 
tophylleae), etc. Affinity among these plants is quite out of the 
question ; but since the water crowfoot is undoubtedly descended 
from some terrestrial buttercup, and the Halorageae are aquatic forms of 
Onagraceae, and Hottonia is allied to land primroses, etc., the inductive 
evidence is ample to prove that this type of submerged foliage is 
entirely due to the direct and arresting action of the aquatic medium, 
which brings about degradations throughout the entire plant. 

Another type of submerged leaf is ribbon-like. This is seen in 
Lobelia dortmanni, Hippuris, etc., but it is commoner among mono- 
cotyledons. From these, as in Sagittaria, we learn that this form is 
really phyllodinous as long as it is in deep water ; but when the 
surface is reached the leaf develops a blade at the summit. And since a 
progress from phyllodes to sagittate blades is imitated in Nymphaeaceae, 
we a^ain see a direct cause and effect. 1 

Juncaceous Type. — A stem with much reduced leaves and a rounded 

1 For fuller details of these and the following types the reader is referred to "The 
Origin of Plant Structures," Internat. Sci. Series, vol. lxxvii. 


rachis, resembling those of a rush, is characteristic of many marsh 
plants, but is not confined to the genus Jiincus. Thus Oenanthc fistulosa 
and Crantzia lineata (Umbelliferae), several Cassias, Spar Hum junceum, 
etc. (Leguminosae), Scorzonera, Enhydra (Compositae), Convolvulus chon- 
drilloides (Convolvulaceae), Johnsonia and Soivcrbia (Liliaceae), Bobartla 
and Lansbergia (Irideae), are all good illustrations enforcing the same 
conclusion as to the common origin of their common resemblances. 

Xerophilous Types. — One of the commonest mimetic features of 
plants growing in very arid districts is to be spiny. Our own Genista 
anglica (Needle-Furze) and ITlex europaeus (the Common Furze) will 
illustrate it ; but " thorns and thistles " have been recognised as typical 
of deserts from the earliest ages. 

That drought is the actual cause of spinescence in all cases has 
been easily proved by growing such plants in a moist soil and air, 
when the spinescence rapidly disappears. 

Another xerophilous and more remarkable type is the fleshy stem. 
Thus the Cactaceae of Mexico mimic very closely the Euphorbias 
with thick leafless stems of the Soudan, as well as the Stapelias 
(Asclepiadaceae) of South Africa. As the conditions of life in which 
these three groups live are the same, their peculiar vegetative structures 
have been similarly evolved. 

Alpine Types. — One of the most characteristic types of vegetation 
is that of the Cypress, Thuia, and Juniper, the leaves of which are 
extremely minute and closely adpressed and imbricated along the 
slender shoots. 

Now, we find this type of foliage exactly paralleled in, or mimicked 
by Alpine species of the genus Veronica, which abound in' New 
Zealand. The species of the lowlands are shrubby, with large leaves ; 
those of a higher elevation begin (say) with V. buxifolia, so called 
because its leaves resemble those of the box ; then on ascending to 
4000 and 5500 feet there occurs V cuprcssoides, the specific name 
indicating its mimetic resemblance to the Cypress; while at 8000 feet 
V. lycopodioides is found, resembling the Lycopodium, or Club-Moss. 

As drought appears to be one of the direct causes of this diminished 
type of foliage, it is not surprising to find it mimicked in the African 
deserts by Salsola pachoi, etc. So, too, in the Antarctic regions, it is 
exactly paralleled by that of Drapetes muscosa (Thymelaceae), Bolax 
glebaria (Umbelliferae), Lyallia herguellensis (Caryophylleae), Forstera 
glavigera (Stylideae). 

Muscoidal Type. — This is one of the extreme forms of high Alpine 
as well as of Arctic and Antarctic forms. Besides the above-named 
species of Veronica, there are Saxifraga bryoides, S. muscoides, Cherleria 
sedoides, Silenc acaulis, etc. Lastly, Bolax glebaria (Umbelliferae), of 
the Falkland Islands, is mimicked by species of Acantlwphyllum 
(Caryophylleae), in Afghanistan, and by Haastia (Compositae), in New 

9 NAT. .SO. VOL. XIV. NO. 84. 

126 GEORGE HENSLOW [febkuahy 

Grass-Leaved Type. — Herbaceous plants growing thickly together, 
and so preventing each other from spreading out their blades hori- 
zontally, have often assumed a grass-like foliage. Hence a caespitose 
habit has induced a vertical position in the foliage, so that the leaf has 
acquired a narrow linear form, the anatomical details following suit by 
its developing stomata, etc., on both sides. Lathyrus nissolia, which 
grows among grass, has this type of leaf. Thrift, Pinks and Carna- 
tions, Sedges and the Bog Asphodel, as well as Grasses, have similarly- 
formed leaves. Those belonging to dicotyledons retain the reticulated 
venation, the branches starting from near the base at an acute angle, 
thus more or less imitating the parallel venation of the monocotyledons. 

Specialised Mimetic Organs. — Leafless but foliaceous stems, 
closely mimicking true leaves, occur in widely-separated orders having 
no affinity. Thus Xylophylla (Euphorbiaceae) may be compared with 
Ruscus (Liliaceae) ; while of leafless but winged stems the following are 
good examples : — Bossioea scolopendria, Genista sagittalis, and species of 
Acacia (Leguminosae). 

Climbing Plants. — Mimicry is well seen among these ; as, for 
example, between the tendrils of a vine or passion-flower, which con- 
sist of metamorphosed flowering branches, and those of a pea, which 
are homologous with a leaf. In Dissochaeta, aerial roots undertake 
the same function, as do the slender branches of species of Strychnos. 

Ascidiform Type. — Perhaps no better illustration of plant mimicry 
could be given than that between the pitcher of Cephalotus follicularis 
and that of species of Nepenthes. These two genera are monotypic, and 
therefore imply a long and now lost ancestry. The general appearance 
of the mimetic pitchers is precisely the same in both. There is a 
similar " lid," a pitcher of the same shape, with an inrolled margin, 
glands sunk into the surface of the lining of the pitcher, which exter- 
nally carries a fringed guide from bottom to top. Yet, while the 
pitcher of Cephalotus is a metamorphosed leaf-blade, that of Nepenthes 
is developed out of a water-gland situated at the apex of the blade, this 
latter taking no part in its formation whatever. 

Such complete mimicry as this is quite as astounding as any 
between two insects, whose forms and colours are alike, or between the 
kangaroo mouse and the genus Mus. 

Conclusion as to Mimetic Vegetative Organs. — The above- 
mentioned cases are but samples of what may be called a general 
principle in nature ; which is, that since the living protoplasm is of one 
and the same kind in all beings, as far as we know, where a certain 
feature is evolved, a similar one may be expected under similar condi- 
tions, and a mimetic organ is the result ; that is, so far as the conditions 
of the structure will allow. Thus as the kangaroo mouse mimics a true 
mouse, but retains its pouch and insectivorous teeth ; so a linear 
dicotyledonous leaf imitates a grass blade, but retains its branching- 


Mimetic Flowers. — These are by no means uncommon. Bracts 
are often coloured, and so to say answer for a corolla, as in Poinsettia, 
Euphorbia, some Umbelliferae, and "everlastings." But the mimicry 
may be much more exact, and so close, indeed, as to deceive the 
unwary. Thus the four white bracts of species of Comus render the 
inflorescence exactly like a flower of a Clematis. Parwinia tulipifera, 
as the name implies, is very like a tulip ; while Euphorbia jacquiniacf or a 
has five scarlet lobes on the rim of the involucral cup, thereby 
mimicking a corolla with five petals. 

The papilionaceous corolla of the Leguminosae is imitated by the 
so-called " falsely-papilionaceous " corolla of Polygala. It is also seen 
in the gamopetalous corolla of Collinsia bicolor (Scrophularineae), the 
front petal of which closes over the stamens and pistil precisely as 
do the keel petals of Genista or other member of the Leguminosae. 
A similarly shaped corolla is seen in some species of Pelargonium 
(Hoarea group). Again, a spike of flowers of an orchid, Pisa cooperi, 
is very like one of a larkspur with its upturned and elongated spur. 

Lastly, Croats (Irideae), Sternbergia (Amaryllideae), and Colchicum 
(Liliaceae) have precisely similar perianths, though representatives of as 
many orders. 

General Conclusion. — When all the above facts (and many more 
might have been given) are considered together, and when it is noted 
that in many cases experimental verification shows that the peculiarities 
in question are the results of the definite or direct action of the 
environment, the inductive evidence is overwhelming that mimetic 
results are in all cases the consequence of the environment influencing 
the protoplasm to adaptive response. It will thus be seen that natural 
selection is quite uncalled for, and, in fact, has no raison d'etre in the 
origin of any structure whatever. 

80 Holland Park, London, W. 

Bees and the Origin of Flowers. 

By Gr. W. Bulman, M.A., B.Sc. 

Those engaged in the study of the mutual relations of insects and 
flowers will read with interest a short paper in Natural Science for 
October last on " Bees and the Development of Flowers," by Mr. F. W. 
Headley, Haileybury College, New Zealand. It is to be feared, how- 
ever, that this writer's attempt to save the situation for Darwinism as 
regards the origin of flowers will hardly stand the strain of criticism. 
Mr. Headley admits that the habits of bees in passing freely from 
variety to variety, or from one nearly allied species to another, will 
tend rather to retard than promote the development of new species. 
" Thus it is just where her constancy might seem most needed," he 
writes, " that it breaks down. When new varieties are arising, the 
operation of bees comes in to swamp them, if possible, by intercrossing, 
and so prevent them from developing into species." This, indeed, 
must be obvious to all. But while giving up the old explanation, 
Mr. Headley still thinks the colours of flowers must be explicable on 
Darwinian principles. " A priori" he says, " if it be granted that the 
Darwinian hypothesis affords a satisfactory explanation of other pheno- 
mena of the animal and vegetable worlds, it seems unlikely that it 
should leave the colours of flowers unexplained." This is doubtless 
true, and if the origin of species is due to the Darwinian principle of 
natural selection, then the colours of flowers must be due to the same. 
To stop the gap, then, caused in the theory of the origin of flowers by 
insect agency by the loss of the constancy of the bee, Mr. Headley 
takes a plank from Dr. Bomanes' doctrine of physiological selection. 
The action of the bee, he thinks, in carrying pollen from variety to 
variety will be of no consequence, since these varieties are sterile 
inter se ; while in carrying it from individual to individual of the 
same species it will still give an advantage to those it visits. As 
proof of this sterility between varieties of wild-flowers the experiments 
of the French botanist, Alexis Jordan, quoted by Bomanes in " Darwin 
and after Darwin," vol. iii., are referred to. But even admitting 
that Jordan proved his case, we have still the following objections to 
bring forward. If the bee visits indifferently all the varieties of a 



species it cannot raise one or more of these to the rank of distinct 
species at the expense of the others, as it ought to do on the principles 
of natural selection. Again, admitting that all species, sub-species, 
and varieties as they exist to-day are sterile inter se, we cannot 
suppose that the varying individuals in a species — which must form 
the beginning of a new species — are so. And it is with such that the 
bee has to deal at the beginning of the development. Ce n'est que le 
premier pas qui coihte. but if you cannot take the first step it does not 
matter how easy the rest are. Thus the principle of physiological 
selection will scarcely man the breach caused by the loss of the con- 
stancy of the bee. But can we accept fully the principle that 
varieties are as a rule sterile inter se ? Dr. Eomanes, indeed, seems 
to have accepted it unreservedly, but it is hard to resist the conviction 
that had it been less in accordance with his theory of physiological 
selection he would have subjected the evidence to more rigid criticism. 
The experiments, we may note, were made some twenty-five years 
ago, and do not appear to have been since confirmed. They were 
also avowedly made for the purpose of proving that each species 
and variety had been specially created. Darwin, moreover, found that 
crosses between slight varieties were more, and not less, fertile than 
those between individuals of the same variety. This is also the 
experience of gardeners and breeders. 

With regard to the question of the influence of colour on insects, 
Mr. Headley writes as follows : — 

" To account, then, for the colours of flowers we have the proved 
colour-sense of bees. Sir John Lubbock has tested it by experiment : 
they are attracted by brilliant blossoms, and, therefore, it has been to 
the interest of plants, in order to obtain cross-fertilisation, to produce 
conspicuous flowers." 

But whoever ventures to form an opinion on this very difficult 
subject will have also to take account of the exhaustive experiments 
recently carried out by Professor Plateau of Ghent. That gentleman 
concludes, as the result of his researches, that insects are attracted 
to flowers in a very subordinate way by sight, and chiefly by another 
sense, viz. smell. My own observations do not lead me to go so far 
as to say that the colours of flowers have nothing to do with attracting 
insects to them. But I do most emphatically assert that they are 
indifferent as to what particular colour the flower they visit is. As 
far as I am able to judge, it matters not one iota to a bee whether 
the flower is blue, red, pink, yellow, white, or green : so long as there 
is honey, that is sufficient. Indeed, we sometimes hear of bees gather- 
ing the honey-dew from the leaves of trees, visiting sugar refineries, 
and robbing jam factories. 

As regards the supposed constancy of bees in visiting flowers Mr. 
Headley expresses his opinion thus : — 

' That they show a remarkable degree of constancy is undeniable. 

130 G. IV. BULMAN [fee. 1899 

When at work upon dandelions they will not wander to a neighbour- 
ing narcissus. In thus keeping to flowers of the same make, they are 
consulting their own interest." 

Now, while in this and in other parts of his paper Mr. Headley 
goes farther than is allowed by the advocates of the insect-selection 
theory, and too far to render that theory tenable, it is still, according 
to my observations, short of the truth. Thus, while I have never 
seen a bee go from dandelion to narcissus I have seen them go from 
dandelion to chickweed, from Iceland poppy to Cistus, from herb 
Eobert to lavender, from snapdragon to woundwort, from devil's-bit 
scabious to knapweed, etc. The fact, however, that bees pass at times 
from one very different species to another, while it renders the bee still 
more impossible as an evolver of flowers on the old view, does not 
affect Mr. Headley's proposed amendment. 

Another point in Mr. Headley's paper seems to call for remark. 
He asserts that flowers not fertilised by insects " are almost all of them 
dull and inconspicuous." But there are probably a good many excep- 
tions to this rule. One of these is specially mentioned, viz. the larch, 
of which it is said, " In these the colour may, possibly, be looked upon 
as a by-product of the physiological activity of the plant. The more 
striking blossoms, elaborate in form and coloration, cannot possibly 
be mere by-products." 

But this is no explanation : it might with equal truth and justice 
be said of the blue of the larkspur, the crimson of the cranesbill, or 
the yellow of the buttercup. Indeed, in every flower the colour is the 
product — why in any case call it a by-product ? — of the physiological 
activity of the plant. If the blue of the hyacinth and harebell re- 
quire a further explanation, so does the red of the larch. 

In conclusion, a word as to my own position as regards this ques- 
tion. Mr. Headley remarks that certain naturalists, including myself, 
" have come to the conclusion that the colours of flowers have arisen 
quite independently of insects." I should prefer to define my position 
in slightly different words. Instead of saying I have come to the con- 
clusion that the colours of flowers have arisen quite independently of 
insects, I should like to put it thus : — 

I conclude, as the result of my observations of the habits of insects 
visiting flowers, that the theory of the origin of the latter by their 
selective action, as taught by Darwin, AVallace, Hermann Midler, Sir 
John Lubbock, and Mr. Grant Allen, is absolutely incompatible with 
the facts of the mutual relations of insects and flowers. 

29 Queen's Terrace, Jesmond, 

Principles of Animal Development. 

By John Beard, D.Sc, University Lecturer on Comparative Embryology 
and Vertebrate Morphology, Edinburgh. 

I. A WheWs Egg. 

" Omne vivum ex ovo " is now an ancient aphorism, and it has become 
a commonplace to say that the starting-point of almost all animal 
development at the present time is the fertilised egg. The phenomena 
leading up to this need not concern us at present. Let us assume 
that we have got our fertilised egg, and let us in the first place con- 
sider what sort of a thing it is. If the choice of such an egg be given, 
how great is the variety out of which it may be selected. It may be 
the microscopically small egg of an Echinoderm, or one of larger size 
from the cocoon of an earthworm, the still bigger one from the leathery 
egg-case of a whelk, or the huge one from the marvellous egg-capsule 
of a smooth skate. It may be so large and contain so much food- 
material that the developing organism may feed upon it for two years, 
or so small and so destitute of nourishing substances that it can suffice 
for the needs of the development for but a few hours. 

It may be destitute of any envelope beyond a thin structureless 
membrane formed by the egg-cell itself, or it may be closely wrapped 
up in a series of coverings, and outside of these we may find a shell 
or case of complex form and architecture. 

The eggs of animals are, indeed, endless in variety, when the size, 
amount of food-yolk, coverings and appendages, and the modes in 
which they are deposited are taken account of. But with all this one 
fact stands out quite clearly, that the size, composition, mode of de- 
position, etc., of any particular egg, have an intimate relation and 
connection with the development of an individual of the species whose 
egg it is. 

The individual peculiarities of ova raise various interesting ques- 
tions which have hitherto received but the barest consideration in 
embryological text-books and even in developmental researches. Prob- 
ably for solutions of most of them the science will have long to wait. 
The nature of most modern embryological research is, unfortunately, 
not such as to furnish hints in the direction of their elucidation ; 

I 3 1 

132 JOHN BEARD [February 

the amount one man can accomplish, even if he be conscious of the 
existence and importance of the problems, is but the merest trifle, and 
his labours would require an enormous comparative material, if the 
results were to be of far-reaching import. 

These reasons, paradoxical though it may seem to be, impel the 
writer to attempt some sort of consideration of the subject. It might 
be made the work of a lifetime without evidence of exhaustion of the 
subject. If we are ever to have a true and real comparative embryo- 
logy of organisms, as well as the existing comparative embryology of 
organs, many questions relating to the eggs of animals will need to be 
cleared up. 

Facts are to be found for the seeking ; but, as every conscientious 
embryologist realises, the search nowadays, especially if it be in some 
definite direction, is often long and arduous. And the result may 
often be a single fact and a dozen new problems. Moreover, most of 
us have our plans of work mapped out for years to come, and have no 
desire to forsake the plot of ground which we have diligently and 
hopefully tilled, before we have reaped our little harvest. Therefore, 
since the problem of the individuality of eggs with which we have 
begun forms no integral part of our personal task, what we have to 
say under this head partakes rather of the nature of incidental glean- 
ings and musings than of deliberate investigation. We have attempted 
to enunciate some of the problems without pretending to do more than 
suggest what may be the nature of some of the solutions. 

Examine on the sea-shore the egg-capsules of a dog-whelk (Purpura 
lapUlus). If one of the freshly-deposited cases be opened, in its in- 
terior a large number of minute eggs may be counted. Some time 
later visit the same spot and open others belonging to the same bunch. 
The probability is that the enumeration of the developing organisms 
in all the egg-cases of the bunch will not give as large a number as 
that already recorded in the single freshly-deposited one. 

This is of course an old story. The cannibalism of the developing 
young of the dog-whelk and whelk is one of the commonplaces of 
marine zoology. 

Many years ago the writer endeavoured to study it for himself, 
but as the examination of the cases was begun, when, as it turned out 
subsequently, the eliminative process was over, it was naturally not 
observed ; although the facts were looked for until the young whelks 
emerged from their cases. The process on that occasion was not seen, 
simply because it happens at a very early period. One interesting- 
little point did, however, reveal itself, that the number of young whelks 
within an egg-case was fairly constant, about five or six. If the pro- 
cess be mere cannibalism, it is not easy to perceive why it should stop 
short, when some five or six larvae were left in the egg-case, why, as 
almost always happens in the case of the Alpine Salamandra atra, 
one should not devour the rest. 


The number is so constant in the whelk, that one may suspect 
that it is governed by some law. Probably, too, if one counted them, 
the number destined to be devoured would be found to be equally 
constant. The whole process must take place under the workings of 
a law or laws, and it is part of our task as embryologists to try to find 
out what these are and what determines them. 

If, after the examination of the whelk-cases, a fully-formed egg- 
purse be taken from the oviduct of a dog-fish or skate, on opening this 
we shall almost certainly find but a single egg. 

The eggs of different species of dog-fish or skate also differ con- 
siderably in size, both as regards the egg-cases and the yolks. These 
differences are not always in relation to the specific differences in size. 
The smooth skate (H. batis) is much larger than the starry ray (B. radiata), 
but no proportion can be detected between the sizes of the two skate 
and those of their eggs. Indeed, if we study the ripe eggs of two 
closely allied species of shark, Mustelus vulgaris and M. laevis, we find 
that, although the two fishes are almost of identical size and so alike 
that no fisherman could ever be expected to distinguish between them, 
their eggs exhibit great differences in size along with almost inappreci- 
able differences in the texture of the egg-capsule. 

What, then, are the essential differences between the eggs of these 
two species ? The egg-shell of M. vulgaris appears to be rather 
thicker than that of M. laevis, and — a very important point — the 
actual egg, the yolk, of the former is the equivalent in size and weight 
of about four of the latter. 

This difference cannot be ascribed to the relative sizes of the two 
species, and, as a matter of fact, it is in association with a very funda- 
mental difference in the mode of development. 

Both species are viviparous, and it is possible that the young are 
born in both cases in the same condition of development, though this 
has yet to be determined. In M. vulgaris the yolk suffices for the 
whole of the uterine development, whereas in M. laevis it is used up 
long before uterine life is over, and for what is probably a long portion 
of its uterine existence the young M. laevis is nourished by a sort 
of placental attachment of its yolk-sac to the uterine wall, as recorded 
by Aristotle, and as rediscovered during the present century by that 
great embryologist, Johannes Mliller. 

The instances above mentioned may serve as the text for further 
study. Modern embryology has never yet seen any difficulties or 
even any problems in the matter at all. We have our classifications 
of various kinds of eggs. We recognise eggs with little or no 
food-yolk, and those with much. Various forms of segmentation or 
cleavage of the egg are distinguished, such as equal or adequal, un- 
equal but complete, and meroblastic or partial. Our leading text- 
books either say, or lead the reader to infer, that the differences 
between the various forms of cleavage are dependent upon the amount 

i 3 4 JOHN BEARD [February 

of food-yolk. As compared with the egg of a frog or toad that of 
a cod-fish contains but little food-yolk, yet the former exhibits unequal 
but complete cleavage, and the latter partial or meroblastic. Our 
classification may be convenient for purposes of elementary instruction, 
but it is purely empirical and has no real scientific basis. 

It is like everything else. With the advance of knowledge, our 
conceptions of organic Nature become enlarged, and we come more and 
more to perceive how adverse Nature is to schematic and empirical 
classifications. But within recent years we have gone further still in 
the use or abuse of food-yolk in embryological science. It has even 
been made the basis of a phylogenetic tree of vertebrate ancestry. What 
more could be asked of it than this ? The discoverer of this tree has 
indeed disowned and rejected the figment of his own imagination ; 
but, this notwithstanding, from time to time it tries to blossom forth 

If it could be proved that, as we ascend the vertebrate scale, the 
food-yolk either increased or decreased in a regular and intelligible 
fashion, good reason might underlie its use in phylogenetic speculation. 
But if we attempt to evolve dog-fish and skate from lampreys by 
increasing the amount of food-yolk in the egg, ganoids from the former 
by again reducing it, and amphibians from these by a still further 
reduction, and by a new and enormous increase reptiles from am- 
phibians, and so on to the end of the mammalian chapter, w r e are not 
really drawing upon an actual tangible, but limited, supply of food- 
yolk, but simply and solely on the intangible and unlimited resources 
of the imagination. 

If it be suspected that the food-yolk of an egg has either increased 
or decreased, some cause must have been behind the change. It is 
only in fairy tales, such as that of " Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp," 
that things come into existence from nowhere and out of nothing. As 
in physical science so also in natural science every effect has a 
cause and every effect is governed by a law or by laws. 

If the food-yolk of an egg can be shown to have increased in 
amount, we must not forget that the egg has had a history, 1 in past 
times, and that a plus added to it at or during some epoch of time 
necessarily entails a minus or abstraction from something else at the 
same time. 

That this must be so may not be obvious at the first glance. But 
it is all but certain that the cells in the ovary which feed the ovarian 
egg (follicle cells), or in other cases the ovarian cells consumed by the 
ovarian egg, are themselves rudimentary or degenerate or sterile eggs. 
And the amount of nourishment they can furnish in any given instance 
would seem to be definite and limited. If the egg of an animal 
increase in size and amount of food-yolk it may in all probability 

1 This might be termed a " phylogenetic history," were it not liable to be misconstrued 
into confession of faith in recapitulation. 


be rightly concluded that fewer eggs have been laid, and that in 
some form or other more incipient eggs have been used up in the 
process of forming the functional one. 

This conclusion, or suspicion, brings us naturally to the main 
points of our inquiry, i.e. to the modes in which food-yolk has been 
obtained, and an egg-capsule for the reception of a single egg evolved. 

The simplest eggs are admittedly those, like the eggs of many 
Echinoderms, which contain little or no food-yolk, possess only a single 
membrane formed by the egg itself, aud are laid singly, an egg-capsule 
being entirely absent. 

It is always found that such simple eggs are laid in great numbers, 
for few or noue have been rendered sterile, or degraded to serve as 
food to the others. 

Naturally in such cases the developing organism can attain no 
great degree of complexity of structure before its original source of food- 
supply, that contained in the egg itself, is used up. The organism must 
then hatch out and seek food for itself from extraneous sources. Under 
these conditions the resulting organism possesses at its birth the 
simplest possible structure, that of a gastrula composed of two layers of 
cells and with an aperture leading into the gut. 

Apparently there are two ways in which a further supply of 
food might be bestowed on the developing egg. Some of its 
fellows might be rendered sterile in the ovary, and there be used 
up, as in liver-flukes, tapeworms, insects, etc., to increase the food- 
supply of the remaining functional eggs. Or, a big batch of eggs being- 
deposited together within a simple structureless cocoon, as in earth- 
worms, leeches, the lug-worm, and the whelk, some might be devoured 
by others to form a reserve supply of food, as is the case in the whelk. 

Whether there is any connection between the two processes is a 
difficult question to decide. It may be that they have been separately 
evolved and that they have proceeded along parallel lines in their 
subsequent history. On the other hand, in some cases, at any rate, it 
is possible that the latter of the two processes was the original one, 
and that in course of time it has passed into the former. 

If the indications are wanting, that the eggs of lampreys, ganoids, 
and bony fishes ever passed through the latter condition of being 
deposited in batches in simple cocoons, the evolution of a skate's egg 
and purse is only intelligible on this supposition. 

Taking the latter process first of all, it will be noticed that it 
ultimately leads to two results, — to the formation of a large-yolked egg 
and to the evolution of a complicated egg-capsule for its reception. 

In its very beginning the formation of a simple cocoon entails the 
co-operation of structures external to the ovary in the shape of genital 
ducts. These are necessary in order that a cocoon, however simple in 
form and structure, may be produced. It is the entire absence of any 
such structure in connection with the eggs of lampreys, bony fishes, 

1 3 6 JOHN BEARD [ februa ry 

etc., which would appear to point to a different history of the yolk in 
these cases. Reverting to the cocoon, a very simple structure, formed 
by a genital duct, and containing a great number of small eggs with 
little food-yolk, may be looked upon as the beginning of the process. 
The lug- worm, Arenicola, furnishes an example. Larvae are developed 
within the cocoon, and live there as long as they have food to consume. 
If they then find no other nutriment within this structure they must 
emerge, and seek for food elsewhere. 

Further life within the cocoon is only possible on one or other of 
two conditions.' The substance of the cocoon itself, or a part of it, 
i.e. all except its cortex, may be of a nutritive value. This is so in 
certain leeches, for instance. Here the larvae, as soon as they reach 
the gastrula condition, proceed to gorge themselves with the semi-fluid 
" albumen " of the cocoon, and this food-supply suffices them until the 
young leech is formed. 

But in some animals with simple cocoons the contents of the 
cocoon apart from the eggs appear to possess no nutritive properties. 
Undoubtedly it is to be looked upon as a secondary condition, when 
the gelatinous " white " of the cocoon acquires a food value. 

A parallel to this is seen in certain eggs of vertebrate animals. 
The egg-white of an Elasmobranch egg contains only the merest traces 
of albumen (Johannes Muller), and is of no use as food. Whereas the 
same egg-white in a bird's egg is largely albuminous and very 

But in the simple cocoon, although the substance of this structure 
is sometimes of no value as a food, there may be unfertilised or un- 
developed eggs, or abnormal or degenerated larvae, and these may serve 
as food for the normal ones. Thus, in the second way, the " birth- 
period " may be postponed. 

There are well-known cases among the Mollusca, Purpura and 
Buccinum, in which this " cannibalism " is the normal course of events. 
A few of the eggs in a cocoon develop quickly, and become gastrulae, 
with large mouths and muscular gullets. These few very soon use up 
their own food-supply, and then proceed to devour their fellows, which 
have either not developed at all, or only gone a little way. If this 
were carried to an extreme — and it is probable that such cases do 
occur — it would end in there being only one developing organism left 
in the cocoon, and this would be gorged with the food-yolk obtained 
by the annexation of its fellows. 

The original cocoon by the solidification of its outer walls, its 
centre remaining semi-fluid, might thus become an egg-case for a single 
egg. This would be realised in fact if the eggs to be consumed, in- 
stead of being deposited as separate entities within the cocoon, were 
joined to or devoured by that single one which was destined to develop 
while in the ovary. The well-known instances of Hydra and Tubu- 
laria, with their ovarian " cannibalism," are obviously illustrative. 


When this transference to the ovary of the process of devouring 
took place, is of course a moot question, but it must have happened 
at some time or other in many cases. The originally large number of 
eggs in the cocoon then becomes reduced to a single large one by the 
conversion of the rest into yolk-material in the ovary itself. And 
thus, having at first served a rather different purpose, the cocoon be- 
comes an egg-case for a single egg. 

Though such an egg contains a large amount of food-yolk in many 
instances, this cannot be retained during cleavage and the subsequent 
processes within the cells of the developing organism, and these act as 
if they were not connected with such an enormous mass of food. 
The egg now, as in a skate, segments in a disc-like fashion, or is 
" meroblastic." The object of the developing organism now seems to 
be to regain possession of the food-mass, which it had been obliged to 
relinquish during cleavage. This it does by forming once more a 
gastrula. The latter is flattened out on the top of the mass of yolk, 
and in order once more to annex this yolk, the gastrula must grow 
round and enclose it. 

So that, if the mass of yolk be large, it appears to be a matter of 
indifference whether it be added to or devoured by the ovarian egg, or 
whether it be first obtained by the swallowing of other eggs within the 
cocoon or egg-case. For the former case ultimately resolves itself in 
a mere modification of the latter. To put it in another way, the de- 
vouring of the yolk-mass has in both cases to be undertaken by the 
developing organism before it can be said to have obtained real posses- 
sion of the yolk. 

As I have elsewhere written, 1 it is thus that the growth of a blasto- 
derm, i.e. of a flattened gastrula over a yolk-sac, is exactly compar- 
able to the devouring of yolk-masses by a whelk -gastrula. The end is 
the same, and probably the beginning was the same in both.. 

We have now got but a little distance along the path of evolution 
of animal eggs, and other interesting problems remain for examination. 
On another occasion the study of the purse of a dog-fish or skate may 
engage our attention. From this we may pass to the consideration of 
the egg of a mammal, and finally, this should lead to the elucidation of 
some of the principles underlying mammalian development. Food-yolk 
will here again be found to form an integral part of the programme, 
and we may perhaps come to realise with what nicety Nature bestows 
it on animal eggs. And if we glean nothing else, we may at least 
learn to realise that the reign of law pervades animal development from 
its commencement to its close. 

1 "The Span of Gestation," Jenn, Gustav Fischer, 1897. 
University, Edinburgh. 

The Colours and Pigments of Butterflies. 

By M. I. Nbwbigin, D.Sc. 

In a previous issue of Natural Science, in the course of a paper on 
" The Pigments of Animals," an account of the general colour-pheno- 
mena of the Lepidoptera was given, and the great interest and import- 
ance of the subject indicated. Since the publication of that paper, not 
a few observers have been engaged in pursuing further investigations, 
and numerous additional papers have appeared ; some of these it is 
proposed to briefly summarise here. For a somewhat detailed account 
of the papers published up to the end of last year, reference may be 
made to the chapters on the subject in my " Colour in Nature " (1898), 
but preparatory to the consideration of more recent work, the results of 
these earlier observations may be very briefly stated here. 

The researches of Hopkins, Spuler, Urech, Mayer, and many others 
have shown — (1) that the colours of the wings in butterflies are due 
sometimes to pigments, sometimes to optical effects, and sometimes to 
a combination of the two ; (2) that pigmental colours are shades of 
yellow, red, deep brown, or rarely white, green, and pure black; (3) that 
the white, yellow, and red pigments of the Pieridae, and possibly of other 
butterflies, are members of the uric acid group ; (4) that the red, 
yellow, and white pigments at least in the Pieridae are chemically 
nearly related, while the black and brown pigments differ markedly 
from them, and are of unknown chemical relations. Further, it has 
been noticed by several different observers that, in the development of 
colour in the pupa, white or yellow tints first appear, and there is 
then a gradual darkening of tint as development proceeds — black 
always being the last tint to appear. 

Of the more recent papers with which we are concerned here, we 
shall take first one by Dr. M. Baer on the minute structure of the 
wing-scales in diurnal Lepidoptera. In its general outline, the paper 
for the most part merely confirms the results of others, but on several 
points it is more detailed, and it is valuable as a clear statement of the 
general characters of the colours of butterflies and their causes. The 
value of the paper is greatly increased by the fact that the author did 
not confine his observations to one family, and therefore is enabled to 



clearly point out the differences between the Pieridae and other butter- 

As regards the optical colours of butterflies, Baer, like Spuler, finds 
that the particular tint may be due to the sculpturing of the individual 
scales, or to the combination of different scales. Scales displaying 
optical colours usually contain pigment in addition, but this pigment 
does not produce any marked effect on the colour, although it is no 
doubt a factor in its production. Other apparently optical colours, such 
as emerald-green, peacock-blue, violet, etc., are, according to the author, 
produced by the superposition of scales containing pigment, and scales 
displaying optical colours. The exact physical cause of the optical 
colours was not ascertained. 

Of more importance for our immediate purpose is the treatment of 
pigmental colours. Histologically, the pigments were found to be of 
two types — diffused and granular. Pigments of the former type occur 
diffused through the chitin of the scale, are usually present in very 
small amount, and include the dark pigments, most yellow, orange, and 
red pigments except in the Pieridae, and the white pigment (uric acid) 
of the Pieridae. Contrary to the results of Hopkins, Baer finds that 
some of the orange and yellow pigments of the Pieridae are diffuse 
and not granular. Granular pigments occur exclusively in the Pieridae, 
and are yellow or red in colour. They colour the scales in which they 
occur very deeply, and associated with this fact Baer finds that such 
scales are few in number, and almost without surface sculpturing. The 
superposition of dark -coloured scales upon scales deeply tinted by 
yellow granular pigment may, as in Anthocharis cardamines, produce a 
greenish tint. 

Another recent paper by the Countess Maria von Linden is chiefly 
concerned with the development of the markings of the wings of butter- 
flies, but incidentally also discusses the order of development of the 
colours. The author, like preceding observers, finds that those parts of 
the wing in the pupa which are ultimately black, are first colourless, 
then yellow or yellowish- white, then orange and orange-red, and finally 
attain their black tint. The last stage, the development of the dark 
tint, is not due to a replacement of the lighter pigments, but to a 
superposition of darkly tinted scales over light ones. Optical colours, 
such as blue, appear later than the dark tints, and are only exhibited 
by scales which contain dark pigment. Though the paper is not 
primarily concerned with pigment, it nevertheless is of importance as 
tending to emphasise the distinction between the dark pigments and 
the others, and the late appearance in ontogeny both of these dark 
pigments and of the optical colours. 

The two preceding papers may serve as an introduction to a 
third, a much more elaborate treatise, by Herr M. C. Piepers, on 
" Colour-evolution in the Pieridae." Under this title the author 
discusses a variety of topics connected with the colours of butterflies 

140 M. I. NEWBIGIN [February 

and colour phenomena in general ; but the paper differs from the 
preceding in that it is concerned with the broad interpretation 
of facts observed in the field, rather than with the setting forth 
of the results of special research. As readers of his previous 
papers are aware, the author speaks with the authority of one 
having large experience of butterfly-collecting, especially in the 
Far East. Like many others, he has as a collector been greatly 
impressed by the phenomena of sexual dimorphism and polymorphism, 
and colour variation in general ; but, unlike many field naturalists, 
he is unable to accept the suggestion that these are due to secondary 
causes. On the contrary, he believes that they prove that the 
colours of butterflies tend to vary in a definite direction ; that 
there is an evolution of colour. In other words, he holds that 
if certain genera in a given family include species which exhibit 
colour varieties, then, in the different genera, the colour varieties 
will be of similar, nature, certain colours being in each case 
characteristic of the less specialised species or varieties, and other 
colours characteristic of the more specialised forms. 

Beginning with this hypothesis, the author seeks, by a series 
of examples, to determine the course of colour evolution in the 
Pieridae, and to consider the bearing of his results upon various 

By a detailed study of various genera, notably Tachyris and 
Hchomoia, he shows (1) that the amount of red in the wings varies 
greatly ; (2) that red and black vary inversely in amount ; (3) 
that in dimorphic species the male has usually more red and 
less black than the female; (4) that where the fore wings contain 
much red, yellow occurs on the hind wings, but where red is present 
in small amount, yellow is replaced by white. To put this briefly, 
red and yellow on the one hand stand in antithesis to black and 
white on the other, and red tends to predominate in the males. 
Further, the conditions under which red occurs, sometimes as a 
ground colour, sometimes as spots of varying size, together with 
its late appearance in ontogeny relatively to black, convince the 
author that red in itself, or in the form of orange or yellow, is 
the most primitive colour in the Pieridae ; that black and the 
dark tints are more specialised, and that as they develop the 
original red diminishes in amount and fades to orange, yellow, 
and ultimately white. The process which results in this gradual 
decoloration of the primitive pigment does not, however, end at 
white, but ultimately results in the loss of the scales themselves ; 
forms like Macroglossa fuciformis L., and M. hombyliformis Ochs., 
with their glassy wings, being regarded by the author as terminating 
the course of evolution along this line. Simultaneously with the 
decoloration of the primitive red pigment, there may be a development 
of structural colour, but the relation of this to the dark pigments 


is unfortunately not considered. The obvious difficulty that in 
ontogeny white appears before yellow or red, the author ingeniously 
removes by pointing out that this early white is probably optical, 
while the white colour of the adult is due to uric acid acting as a 
white pigment. 

We cannot here follow our author into his discussion of the 
bearing of his results on the chief controversies in regard to 
colour phenomena, but their relation to concrete details may be 

In the first place, the view that bright scarlet is the most primitive 
colour in the Pieridae, with the correlated statement that the males 
in the family are frequently more primitive in regard to their 
colours than the females, will be found somewhat difficult of 
acceptance by most. At the same time, when it is recollected 
that the examples chosen were largely tropical forms, that the 
red and yellow pigments are chemically nearly related, and that 
there is some evidence to show that various external conditions, 
especially heat, are of importance in the production of red varieties 
from forms normally yellow, it would seem that our author's 
statements can be reduced to the simpler form that red, yellow, 
and white are primitive colours in the Pieridae, and, in nature 
as in the laboratory, are readily converted into one another. When 
we remember that these three colours in the Pieridae are due 
to uric acid and its derivatives, there seems nothing improbable 
in the suggestion that in the course of evolution they tend to 
disappear as the dark pigments develop, and are replaced by the 
brilliant optical colours which are apparently associated both with 
these dark pigments and with the progressive differentiation of 
the scales. Such a suggestion I have indeed already made in 
" Colour in Nature." Piepers seems, however, disposed to apply 
his theory not only to the Pieridae but to butterflies in general, 
in which pigments certainly allied to uric acid have not yet been 
demonstrated. We have just seen also that Baer's work tends 
rather to emphasise than to destroy the distinctions between the 
pigments of the Pieridae and of other butterflies. On the other 
hand, the fact that in the case of species of Papilio and Vanessa 
the Countess Maria von Linden found that black was the last 
colour to develop in ontogeny ; that the wings of pupae were first 
yellowish-red ; and that those early colours were later concealed by 
the development of dark scales on the top of the light ones, certainly 
suggests a course of evolution similar to that occurring in the 
Pieridae. The question is not likely to be decided until we know 
the exact relation of the bright pigments of other butterflies to 
those of the Pieridae. Nor can we hope to clearly understand 
the colour phenomena of the Lepidoptera in general, until we also 
know the relation between the dark and the bright pigments, 

10 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 84. 

142 M. I. NE WBIGIN [fee. 1899 

the origin of both, and the relation between the development 
of dark pigments and of optical colours. When these points 
have been determined, we may hope to be able to take a fresh 
survey of the whole field of colour, with some prospect of reaching 
definite conclusions as to the immediate cause of colour variation. 
The colour variations of the Lepidoptera have always been objects 
of great interest, and it may be looked upon as a hopeful sign 
that so many biologists are endeavouring to discover their evolution 
value, instead of being content to point out how they may be useful 
to the species. 

Finally, whatever may seem doubtful or speculative in Piepers' 
suo-oestions, his observations, together with those of the other authors 
named, point at least to one definite conclusion which is worth 
emphasis. They seem to confirm the view, supported by many recent 
investigators, that there is an intimate connection between the colours 
of organs and their general structural peculiarities. Thus, in the 
present case the colours of individual scales do not change very 
markedly in development, but the early scales with their primitive 
tints are covered up by scales bearing the hues of the imago. Similarly, 
in the adult, scales exhibiting the more primitive colours are of simple 
structure, and are replaced in phylogeny by scales of more complex 
structure and more specialised tint. This is a point of much import- 
ance, for it tends to show how far colour changes are from being- 
superficial, how intimately they are connected with the other char- 
acteristics of the organism. 


1. Baer, M., "Ueber Bau und Farben der Fliigelschuppen bei Tagfaltern," Zcitschr. f. 

wiss. Zool., 1898, lxv. pp. 50-64. 

2. Hopkins, F. Gowland, "The Pigments of the Pieridae," Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc, 

1S96, clxxxvi. pp. 661-682. 

3. Linden, Maria von, " Untersuchungen iiber die Entwickelung der Zeichnung des 

Schmetterlingsfliigels in der Puppe," Zcitschr. f. tviss. Zool., 189S, lxv. pp. 1-49, 
3 pis. 

4. Newbigin, M. I., "The Pigments of Animals," Nat. Sri., 1896, viii. pp. 94-100 

and 173-177. Sec also "Colour in Nature," London, 1898. 

5. Piepeus, M. C, "Die Farbenevolution (Phylogenie der Farben) bei den Pieriden," 

Tijdschr. Nederland. Dicrkund. Vcr., 1898, v. pp. 70-289. 

School of Medicine for Women, 

The Red and Blue Colouring Matters of Flowers. 

By P. Q. Keegan, LL.D. 

In my previous paper (see Natural Science, 1898, xii. pp. 194-199) it 
was maintained that the tannic chromogen of the blue colouring matter 
of flowers is not the same as that of the red pigment. The old in- 
vestigators of this attractive subject were not all of one mind in the 
matter. The great majority unequivocally held that the blue was 
the original colour, and that the red was merely a derivative thereof, 
i.e. merely an unessential modification, or a product of further deoxida- 
tion or dehydration. The French chemist Filhol was for a time evi- 
dently in a state of considerable doubt and hesitancy. In his last 
contribution on the subject, dated 25th June 1860, he states that in 
examining the colouring matter of reel, rose, or blue flowers he had 
been struck with the differences which it presents according as it is 
taken from such or such a flower ; he noticed that a great number of 
flowers become blue in contact with alkalis, while others become green, 
and, moreover, that the pigment of the former enjoys a greater stability 
than that of the others. " At first," he says, " he thought he could 
conclude that in deep red flowers there exist two distinct colouring 
matters, one more stable than the other, but he soon saw that it was 
not so when he operated on solutions of pure cyanine ; there are not 
two kinds of cyanine." It is all the more remarkable, therefore, that 
the illustrious Berzelius, who had chemically examined the red pig- 
ments of cherry and gooseberry fruits and leaves, should conclude that 
their colouring matter is not, as had been thought, a combination of a 
blue pigment with an acid. " What had given occasion for this error," 
he says," "is that by treating the juice of the berries with acetate of 
lead blue precipitates are obtained, but this blue colour is due to the 
impurity of the juice in consequence of the presence of citric and malic 
acids." It is hardly necessary to observe that for a very long time 
it was well known to chemists that the blue colours of flowers were 
reddened by acids, and even that the tint of flowers naturally red was 
made more vivid and brilliant by the addition of a trace of acid. But 
this fact, remarkable as it is in its way, seemed comparatively trifling 
so long as the various and divers pigments of plants were regarded as 

1 43 

i 4 4 P Q> KEEGAN [fbbkuabt 

merely modifications of only one fundamental substance. Tainted with 
German alchemical mysticism, Schubler and Frank, A. P. De Candolle, 
and Marquart successively sought for and insisted on the close con- 
nection and genetic relationship of the reds, blues, and yellows : they 
went further, they proclaimed that the colours of flowers were all 
derived from and indissolubly bound to chlorophyll. 

Now, it is obvious that no thorough and complete scientific under- 
standing of this subject could possibly be attained so long as this sort 
of poetically " evolutional " imagination held the field. How eminently, 
then, does it stand to the credit of those acute and able chemists, 
Fremy and Cloez, Martens and Filhol, that they were not moved or 
deterred in the slightest degree by the a priori postulates of their 
German predecessors, that, in fact, they entirely ignored the connection 
of these brilliant colours with chlorophyll. No doubt Filhol declared 
that " there is the most direct analogy between xanthine and chloro- 
phyll," but he never sought to derive the one from the other. He 
and his collaborateurs examined the floral pigments in and by them- 
selves, they were never troubled with evolutionary imaginations and 
hypotheses, and hence they led the way to discoveries which fitly 
served as bases and props for further research and enlightenment. 
Berzelius had little doubt that pure chlorophyll may be the origin of 
the yellow and red colouring matters of autumn leaves, but he admits 
that he was never able to reproduce chlorophyll by means of xantho- 
phyll, nor transform chlorophyll into xanthophyll. Mohl, in 1837, 
would not admit that chlorophyll has any relation with the red colour 
of autumn leaves, but he does not deny its intervention, though only 
indirectly, in the red colour of fruits ; there is nothing to show, how- 
ever, that he considered that there was any chemical connection 
between these bodies. In 1850 Morot, in criticising Marquart's views, 
observes that " chlorophyll is not found in the most superficial layers 
of cells where the blue, violet, and red colouring principles are chiefly 
found ; in the more deeply situated cells of the mesophyll there exists 
much chlorophyll, and at a certain epoch the red substance is seen to 
take birth there, but at the same time the chlorophyll persists, and 
this red substance seems to proceed from cell sap, which is colourless 
beforehand ; this sap by the prolonged action of a weak acid becomes 
red without passing by blue." This passage seem to me to be the 
very first distinct and definite declaration on chemical grounds, partly 
at least, that the green matters of leaves are not connected with the 
red and blue matters, although, as Morot admits, it may be affirmed 
that chlorophyll, anthocyan, and the red matter may be modifications 
of one and the same substance ; but it is hardly necessary to rejoin 
that this is totally different from the affirmation that the blue pigment 
is a direct derivative by dehydration of chlorophyll itself, as Marquart 

In 1858 Morren published his famous " Dissertation sur les feuilles 


vertes et colorees," in which he, with great acuteness, insisted that the 
red and blue colouring matters of plants are not formed from chloro- 
phyll ; and the blue colouring matter (anthocyan) is probably, like 
litmus, the alkali salt of an acid which in the free state constitutes the 
soluble red pigment (erythrophyll) of autumn leaves. It will be noticed 
also that Morot had clearly enounced that a red colour could possibly 
be formed independently in the leaf, in fact it is seen to be produced 
without having previously passed through a blue tint ; in other words, 
it was not derived from the blue. Here, then, there was a farther 
break up of the olden entanglement, for not only were the blue and 
red separated from the green, but the red was threatened with divorce 
from the blue. Now, it was just precisely at this critical point in the 
scientific enlightenment of the mystery that two papers were published 
which may rank among the more interesting efforts of an epoch fertile 
in important researches and discoveries. 

In the Botanische Zeitung, dated April 18, 1862, there appeared 
an article entitled " Some Propositions anent the Physiological Meaning 
of Tannin and of the Pigments of Plants " by A. Wigand, in which the 
author, after giving various illustrations, and leaving chlorophyll, an- 
thoxanthin, indigo, etc., out of account, avers that "in general it results 
from the foregoing as to nearly all blue and red pigments that these 
proceed from tannin through an only unessential modification." . . . 
' A colourless substance dissolved in the cell sap furnishes the basis 
for anthocyan, and this chromogen is tannin, or rather some modifica- 
tion of tannin (cyaneogen) : the transformation of cyaneogen into 
anthocyan depends on an oxidation." Again, early in I860 Professor 
W. Stein suggested that the red colouring matter of flowers was para- 
carthamin, a red substance which he had obtained by the action of 
sodium amalgam on the plant-yellow (rutin) that had been discovered 
by Weiss in 1842. 

" Notwithstanding the extreme suggestiveness of the declarations 
just now set forth, appealing as they did most forcibly to the scientific 
intelligence, it is extremely discreditable that, so far as concerns 
Germany, they were practically ignored for nearly twenty years. No 
doubt Wiesner, alluding to Wigand's paper, had published some observa- 
tions about eight months afterwards, and again in 1872; and Kraus, 
in 1872, had connected the red coloration of winter leaves with the 
presence of tannin. But it was not till 1881 that Detmer confirmed 
the views of Kraus, and H. Pick, in 1883, by an elaborate histological 
and micro-chemical investigation of young shoots, older stems, petioles, 
fruits and their peduncles, and autumn leaves, fully and amply ex- 
tended and ratified the propositions enunciated with such brilliant 
genius by A. Wigand. " We now," he states, " on the basis of our 
researches, assert with Wigand, as a fact, that the red pigment is to be 
found only in plants containing tannin, and that the tannin, at first colour- 
less, can change into the red pigment, which likewise reacts like tannin." 

146 P. Q. KEEGAN [February 

Meanwhile, however, the remarkable differences which are observ- 
able in red and blue flowers and their colouring principles towards 
certain reagents, especially dilute ammonia, or ammonia vapours with 
or without the presence of added acids, still continued to excite com- 
ment and acute controversy. So far back as the year 1824 Macaire 
of Geneva, having noticed that a red infusion of Viola odorata, when 
mixed with a vegetable alkaloid, such as quinine or strychnine, gradu- 
ally retakes the natural blue tint of this flower, suspected that its 
colour is owing to a combination of its chromule with an alkali. In 
1825 Schubler and Frank testified that the infusion of Funkia ovata 
treated with an acid and then with an alkali may present in the same 
vessel all the colours of the spectrum. De Candolle was perfectly 
aware, in 1832, that the infusion of certain red flowers which have 
been acidified assume a blue colour when treated with alkalis, and, on 
the other hand, that the acidified infusions of blue flowers do not 
reassume their original colour when similarly treated. Fremy and 
Cloez asserted that anthocyan w T as reddened by acids and greened by 
alkalis. Wigand stated that the colouring matter dissolved in acid 
cell saps became by alkalis first blue and then green. Wiesner, on 
the other hand, stoutly maintained that anthocyan as such or in itself 
was always blued by alkalis and never greened : it is only when it is 
present along with a substance which is coloured yellow by alkalis 
that it passes by the latter body into green, which thus arises as a 
mixed coloration. In 1867 Naegeli and Schwendener again asserted 
that anthocyan is blued by alkalis and then passes into green ; and 
Sacchse, in 1887, expressed concurrence with this view. All this 
diversity of opinion concerning a matter which, one might imagine, is 
capable of being settled once and for all by the application of definite 
tests, would undoubtedly never have come to pass if there had not 
been " something in it," as they say. The remainder of this paper 
will be devoted to an attempt to explain precisely what this mysterious 
" something " is. 

In the first place, it will be advisable to enumerate at least 
some of those flowers whose colouring matters are known to be 
blued by ammonia vapour and by a dilute solution of ammonia. The 
following list comprises some of the most notable examples : — Fuchsia, 
Pelargonium sp., Plumbago, blue sp., Lycium barbarum, Phaseolus 
multijlorus, Erythrina crista-galli, Echinacea scrotina, Impaticns balsa- 
mina, Salvia splcndens, Polygonum orientale, Camellia, Paeony, and deep- 
red garden Eose (acidified alcoholic extracts). There are doubtless 
many more, but the study of these may suffice to throw some light on 
the subject. Assuming what has been abundantly proved, viz., that 
tannin constitutes the chromogen of the red and blue floral pigments, 
and that tannin is not a homogeneous chemical compound, but em- 
braces many varieties, we must ascertain if there exists any kind of 
tannin in the aforesaid flowers different from that which occurs in the 


ordinary red or blue flowers which are coloured green by dilute alkalis. 
Now, it would appear that the majority of flowers contain either rutin 
or an iron-greening tannin, but a select few, including Fuchsia, Pelar- 
gonium, Paeonia, and Camellia, undoubtedly contain an iron- 
blueing tannin which is no other than gallo-tannin mixed probably in 
some older specimens with a small quantity of gallic or ellagic acid. 
The ordinary pink rose contains only a highly phloroglucin-bearing 
tannin common to the whole order to which the queen of flowers 
belongs ; but in certain garden varieties, wherein the petals have 
immensely developed with full expansion of parts and profound depth 
of coloration, a small proportion of gallic acid has doubtless managed 
to find entrance into the cells of the corolla. In fact, Filhol, Rochleder, 
and others found gallic acid as a constituent in the well-preserved 
and intensely purplish crimson cones of the officinal flores Posae 
rubrae ; and similar remarks will apply to the case of Polygonum 

The residue of the flowers in the foregoing list belong, it will be 
observed, to the orders Solanaceae, Plumbaginaceae, Labiatae, Com- 
positae, and Leguminosae, all of which are distinguished by the 
absence of free phloroglucin, a fact which affords an insurmountable 
presumption that the tannic chromogen is of a character distinct from 
that with which we have just dealt. All who have had some experi- 
ence in the chemistry of herbaceous plants are fully aware that they 
are brimful of quercetin in the form of rutin, etc., which, however, of 
itself fails as a basis for brilliant colorific effects, but may, nevertheless, 
by further de-assimilation develop into tannins which, in the special 
instances now under review, belong to the distinctively iron-greening 
class. The question which is now started and remains to be discussed 
is, whether this iron-greening tannin is adequate to discharge the 
function of a chromogen competent to evolve a pure blue flower ? 

All the genera mentioned are, with the exception of Frythrina, 
capable of producing a blue or purple flower in some of their specific 
forms. Fuchsia, Plumbago, Lycium, and Salvia produce one or more 
pure blue efflorescences ; while Pelargonium, Phaseolus, Echinacea, 
Lmpatiens, Polygonum, Camellia, Paeonia, and Posa produce purples 
more or less deep and frequently approaching deep blue. Of all these, 
Fuchsia, Plumbago, Pelargonium, Lycium, Polygonum, Camellia, Paeonia, 
and Rosa contain either an iron-blueint!' tannin or gallic acid in small 
quantity, and it is the colouring matter of just these flowers which is 
most distinctively blued by ammonia vapour or solution. In point of 
fact, I think it must needs be concluded that in all these instances it 
is the gallic acid resulting from the oxidation of gallo-tannin or of 
some nearly allied benzene derivative, which is solely responsible for 
the blue more or less pure and clear which they so beautifully display. 
Rosa and Polygonum are exceptional, inasmuch as they are genera 
which contain a highly phlobaphenic tannin, i.e. a chromogen which 

148 P. Q. KEEGAN [februauy 

on advanced oxidation evolves brown-red or muddy anhydrides more 
than sufficient to neutralise and overcome any tendency to blue 
coloration incident to the presence of gallic acid. 

Nevertheless, it is evident that gallic acid is not the only substance 
that may officiate as chromogen in the outcoming of vivid and brilliant 
blues. The genus Zinum presents a remarkable phenomenon in this 
connection. Of some fifty species of this genus about seventeen are 
pure blue, and the rest are either yellow or purple, lilac, crimson, rose, 
pink, or pure white. The most astonishing species is L. grandiflorum 
(coccincum) which is the one crimson amidst a genus predominantly 
blue : it contains no gallotannin or gallic acid, but there is some rutin 
and iron-greening tannin, and there is a small amount of free phloro- 
glucin in the plant itself. Now, if ever there was a red flower which 
is or has been naturally and originally blue it is this one, as the 
following reactions will show. The alcoholic extract of the petals is 
of a magenta - red colour, and the filtered aqueous extract of its 
evaporated residue yields with acetate of lead a blue colour, and then 
when acetic acid is added in large excess the blue colour still remains ; 
with subacetate of lead it gives a pure blue colour ; with bicarbonate of 
soda a grayish-blue turning grayish-green, and with oxalic acid added a 
bright scarlet red is obtained ; with acetate of magnesium a splendid 
green, and when acid is added the original red is restored. Thus we 
see that in the presence of heavy bases the blue coloration persistently 
remains even in the presence of a considerable excess of free organic acid ; 
with light and feeble bases, on the other hand, the addition of a small 
quantity of acid determines a distinctly red reaction. And all these 
facts seems to me to demonstrate what I consider to be quite excep- 
tional, viz., that in Linum coccineum the red coloration of the flowers 
is produced by the accidental presence of free acid affecting a natur- 
ally blue pigment. It is hardly necessary to subjoin, that in the vast 
majority of cases, whether the flower be either red or blue, the 
particular tint is not influenced or created by the neutral or acid 
condition of the cell sap. 

By what circumstances, then, is the particular tint created or 
influenced ? In order to answer the question satisfactorily two facts 
must be minutely considered : — 1. Chemical, the presence of quercetin 
in the form of rutin, etc, in the corolla. 2. Physiological, the posses- 
sion by the corolla of energetic respiratory and transpiratory functions, 
with the result that the substances contained in its cells undergo an 
oxidation more or less vigorous and complete. In my previous paper 
I showed that the red pigments of flowers were specifically incidental 
to tannic chromogens which contain phloroglucin in their molecules and 
yield phlobaphenes, i.e. a series of anhydrides, the lower of which are 
crimson and the higher are red-brown; while the blue pigments were 
incidental to acid tannins or to tannins which yield acids on oxidation. 
Now, only a slight chemical experience is requisite for the under- 


standing that in the latter case the process of oxidation has been more 
energetic and more complete than in the former case. Even where 
the blue is apparently the result of a combination of a tannic acid 
with a base, the effect cannot be produced save under circumstances 
especially favourable for oxidation. The flowers comprised within the 
great division Corolliflorae having a gamopetalous corolla, enjoy, by 
reason of the great expansion of cellular surface, a respiratory and 
transpiratory activity which the Polypetalae cannot exhibit. We see 
that all or most of our decidedly blue flowers are gamopetalous, e.g. 
gentians, bell flowers, Jacob's ladder, convolvulus, speedwells, various 
labiates, borage, etc. Linum pereimc is an example of a bright cobalt 
blue-coloured polypetalous flower ; but it may be readily observed that 
the petals are very broad and generally large in comparison with the 
thin and wiry stem and the small strap-shaped leaves ; and I know of 
no valid reason why, under such propitious circumstances, the quercetin 
of the cell sap may not in the absence as here of any phlobaphenic 
tannin, develop to the full, and sowise evolve a high oxybenzoic acid 
which, being immediately transformed into pigment, may not be 
readily detectable in the free state. 

In view of the researches already published, and of my own experi- 
ments, I think it may be concluded, that — 1. A blue flower is unpro- 
ducible in species which contain or are capable of forming phlobaphenic 
tannin, no matter what the development of the inflorescence may 
amount to. 2. A blue flower is more likely to be produced in a species 
having a gamopetalous corolla or perianth, and therefore liable to 
evolve by higher oxidation a certain quantity of a high oxybenzoic 
acid. 3. In species wherein the tannin natural to the organism is 
iron-greening and non-phlobaphenic, a blue flower may possibly be 
producible in a polypetalous corolla, provided always that the petals 
or perianth be large relatively to the height of the plant and to the 
size and robustness of its stem and leaves : in this case it is uncertain 
whether gallic acid is necessary for the production of the effect, but 
anyway an alkaline compound of an oxybenzoic acid would seem to be 
indispensable. I hope in a concluding paper to specifically examine 
these three propositions, and to supply full illustration of their scope 
and tenor. 

11 Queen's Square, 

London, W.C. 


Nineteen Days without a Head. Charles Janet. — " Reaction alcaline 
des chambres et galeries des nids de Fourmis. Duree de la vie des Fourmis 
decapitees " (Comptes Rendus Ac. Sci. Paris, 1898, cxxvii. pp. 130-133). Janet 
had decapitated some workers of Formica rufa in his search for the little Nema- 
tode worms {Rfiabditis), which are parasitic in the head, and was struck by the 
vitality of the headless bodies. In a moist chamber they all remained alive for 
several days, and moved their limbs when gently stimulated. Three lived for 
two days, one for three, two for five, one for seven, two for nine, and one for 
nineteen. The last was a large worker, with an abdomen distended with food. 

Uses of the Swim-Bladder. Chr. Jacobs. — " Ueber die Schwimmblase 
der Fische" {Tubingen Zool. Arb., 1898, iii. pp. 385-411). The swim-bladder 
of the eel contains 44'74 per cent of oxygen, 51 "97 per cent of nitrogen, 3*29 
per cent of carbon dioxide, and this mixture is reduced in amount when the eel 
is kept out of water. The gas is probably liberated by the vascular wall of the 
air-bladder, and the oxygen is -probably absorbed again by the vascular wall of 
the pneumatic duct. In pike and perch there seems to be no respiratory 
function, but the organ probably serves to regulate the specific gravity of the 
fish. In Cobitis fossilis, which can live in non-aerated water by gulping air at 
the surface, the small, apparently rudimentary, swim-bladder is enclosed in a 
bony capsule, and can hardly be supposed to help in breathing. This function 
seems to be discharged by the thick capillary network beneath the epithelium 
of the intestine. 

Witch's Milk. S. CI. Tschassownikow. — " Chemische Untersuchung der 
Hexenmilch " (Le Physiologists Rnsse, 1898, i. pp. 68-72). The milk which is 
formed by the mammary glands of both sexes soon after birth, attaining its 
maximum in the third week, and disappearing completely during the next fort- 
night, has often been examined microscopically, and is well known to contain 
the same corpuscles as ordinary milk, but it has been analysed only three or 
four times. The last analysis shows that the component substances are the same 
as in the milk of normal lactation, but the proportions are different. It con- 
tains more water and salts, but much less proteid, sugar, and fat. Its propor- 
tions closely resemble those of asses' milk. 

Making of Muscle. Alex. Meek. — " Preliminary note on the post- 
embryonal history of striped muscle fibre in Mammals" {Anal. Anzeig., 1898, 
xiv. pp. 619-621). In the field-mouse, the cat, and the tame rat, hyper- 
trophy of the fibres occur, accompanied by a reduction in their number, — a 
good instance of " the struggle of parts within the organism," as Eoux 
phrased it. 

What is a Brain? J. Steiner. — "Die Funktionen des Centralnerven- 
systems und ihre Phylogenese," iii. Abth. Die wirbellosen Tiere (Braun- 
schweig, 1898; see Biol. Centralbl., 1898, xviii. pp. 749-751). The author 


feb. 1899] FRESH FACTS 151 

has defined a brain as the general motor centre associated with at least one of 
the higher sensory nerves. In this sense there is a brain in the supra- 
oesophageal ganglia of Crustacea and Tracheata, but not in Molluscs, Annelids, 
Nemertines, or Planarians, not to speak of Echinoderraa and Coelentera. In 
the dorsal ganglion of Octopus there seems to be a cerebrum in the Vertebrate 
sense, but not a real " brain." 

Evolution of the Brain. B. Haller. — " Vom Bau des Wirbelthiergehirns," 
I. Theil, Salmo und Scyllium (Morphol. Jahrb., 1898, xxvi. pp. 345-641, 11 pis. 
and 23 figs.) As a speculative conclusion based on a multitude of facts, Haller 
suggests that the ancestor of the Chordata (the Helminth, to wit) had for its 
central nervous system a pair of supra-oesophageal ganglia and lateral nerve 
cords. The latter approached dorsally and coalesced in a single cord, whose 
central canal remains as a sign of the primitive separateness. The canal was 
continued forward to the primitive brain, probably the region of the ganglia 
habenulae, where a similar cavity arose by a fusion of the ventral parts of the 
ganglia. Thereafter followed a metameric differentiation of the nerves, both 
cranial and spinal, while the formation of the Vertebrate eyes and the concen- 
tration of the olfactory spheres gave an early impulse to anterior cerebral 

Changes in the Dendrites. S. Soukhanoff. — "Contribution a l'etude 
des modifications que subissent les prolongements dendritiques des cellules 
nerveuses sous l'influence des narcotiques " (La Cellule, 1898, xiv. pp. 387-395 
1 fig.) " L'anatomie pathologique de la cellule nerveuse en rapport avec l'atrophie 
variqueuse des dendrites de l'ecorce cerebrale " (T. C, pp. 399-415, 4 figs.) In 
the guinea-pig intoxicated with trional, poisoned with arsenic, subjected to 
thyroidectomy, or otherwise treated so as to bring about marked nutritive 
disturbances, the dendritic prolongations in the cells of the cerebral cortex 
become markedly moniliform or varicose, which probably implies a degenerative 
process associated with relative atrophy. The particular interest of this is, 
that traces of the moniliform state are to be seen in the normal condition. 

The Lens of the Mole's Eye. C. Ritter. — " Die Linse des Maulwurfes " 
(Arch, f. mikr. Anat., 1898, liii. pp. 397-403, 3 figs.). The minute lens is 
without a nucleus and without concentric structure, in fact, rather like a half- 
made lens in the frog. It permits the passage of light, but is quite incapable 
of forming an inverted image. If any image is formed on the retina it can be 
little better than a tangle of lines. 

A Shower of Fossils. Lortet. — "Chute de Crustaces ostracodes fossiles 
observee a Oullins, pres de Lyon, le 24 Septembre 1898 " (Comptes Rendus Ac. 
Sci. Paris, 1898, cxxvii. pp. 1231, 1232). On a calm evening, about sunset, 
Lortet observed, near Lyon, a thick and rapid shower of fossil Ostracods 
(Cypridinia), and heard the minute shells rustle the withered leaves. They 
had. no doubt been caught in an ascending air-current from some of the regions 
in North Africa, where they abound. 



Die Zelle und die Gewebe. Grundziige der allgemeinen Anatomie und 
Physiologie der Gewebe. Zvveites Buck. By Prof. Dr. Oscar Hert- 
WIG. 8vo, pp. viii. + 314, with 89 illustrations. Jena: Gustav Fischer, 
1898. Price 7 marks. 

Although this book comes at an opportune moment, when the contro- 
versial fires of the " evolutionists " and " epigenetics " are burning low, 
and contains many interesting observations, it will not, in our opinion, 
mark any great epoch in the history of the subject. Even the most deter- 
mined opponent of the neo-evolutionistic school will probably admit that Weis- 
mann's latest most important work, " The Germ-plasm," is, in some respects at 
least, a work of genius ; but this could be hardly said of the present volume. 
Indeed, after reading the three hundred odd pages it contains, we must 
confess to a feeling of disappointment that Dr. Hertwig has not been able 
to state a stronger case for himself and his colleagues. As a destructive 
critic he is generally convincing when he attacks the " evolutionists," and 
he has no doubt done valuable service in overthrowing much of what 
was at one time freely accepted by many biologists as fact, which can 
now be no longer upheld in the light of recent observation and experiment. 
But we much doubt whether his " Theory of Biogenesis," which explains 
development partly from an " evolutionistic " and partly from an "epigenetic" 
standpoint, will be very widely received. We believe that many of Dr. 
Hertwig's deductions are founded on unsound premises. For instance, we 
hesitate to place very much value on the results of those experimental 
embryologists, e.r/., Loeb and Herbst, who submit developing organisms to 
conditions seemingly impossible in a natural state. Their results are 
interesting, and deserve to be carefully noted, but they can very easily be 
made to prove too much, and then become exceedingly dangerous pitfalls 
from which, in our opinion, Dr. Hertwig has not escaped. He is, however, 
much to be congratulated in fighting shy of metaphysics and reserving 
himself to the facts of embryology, cytology, and medicine and surgery, taken 
from sources probably unknown to the general biologist ; while there can 
be no doubt that a careful study of the work will open out many new paths of 
research. Herein, we think, lies the great merit of the book. 

The first four chapters are devoted to a comprehensive study of the 
cell in relation to its neighbours, and deals especially with the organic 
connections between the cells composing the bodies of animals and plants. 
The author then goes on to point out how many external forces there are 
continually at work in the environment of an organism which produce 
the most complicated effects on it, but these depend also on the nature 
of the organism itself. The fact that fertilised ova of two very different forms 
develop in what are apparently identical circumstances, shows that much 
depends on the internal molecular structure of the ovum. This leads on 
to a comparison of the rival theories of the "evolutionists" (Weismann, 

!5 2 


lioux, Poulton, etc.), and of the "epigenetics." (Hertwig, Driesch, Morgan, 
etc.), in which he satisfactorily disproves Weismann's fundamental assump- 
tion of the " qualitative " (erbungleich) division of the idioplasm of the 
nucleus, but yet admits that such an idioplasm must exist, and so paves 
the way towards an explanation of his " Theory of Biogenesis." Develop- 
ment, according to Hertwig, depends on two sets of factors : (a) external \ 
(f>) internal. Under the first he groups the various effects of environment, 
and discusses at length the influence of such forces as gravitation, stress, 
and pressure in the formation of organic tissues. Much space also is 
devoted to the influence of light, temperature, and various chemical substances 
on developing animals and plants. Among the internal factors Dr. Hertwig 
deals chiefly with the correlation existing between the cells themselves 
and between the organs they compose. These chapters form perhaps the 
most important part of the book, for although it is generally admitted 
that correlation must play an enormous part in ontogeny and phylogeny, 
yet in text-books it is rare to find more than a few trite instances quoted, such 
as the deafness of blue-eyed white cats, etc. 

We have also a mass of information with regard to the latest results 
of experimental embryologists as to the phenomena of regeneration. After 
discussing the many pathological changes undergone by cells, Dr. Hertwig 
finally deals with such controversial points as the inheritance of acquired 
characteristics, and the part played by the idioplasm of the cell itself, and 
concludes with a sketch of the way in which his theory has gradually been 
evolved. It may be briefly summarised as follows : — 

(1) Every cell has its own specific characteristics. 

(2) The hereditary material which one cell passes on to another is lodged 
in the nucleus. 

(3) The invisible specific distinctions of an ovum give rise to the visible 
specific distinctions of an adult organism solely by multiplication of cells, and 
their actions and reactions upon one another. 

(4) The differences of cells are not produced by their receiving different 
portions of the hereditary substance. All receive like shares, but do not 
respond alike to external and internal stimuli. The fate of a cell largely 
depends on the exact position it holds with regard to its neighbours. 

(5) Except in the lowest forms of life, each cell, as development proceeds, 
gradually loses the power of reproducing the whole organism, but the germ 
cells are exceptions to this rule. 

(6) Besides possessing hereditary substance, a cell, if it is to develop 
into an organism, must possess the power of responding to certain external 
conditions. Unless these latter are present development is impossible. 

In reviewing this book, all that has been possible to do is to give a bare 
outline of Dr. Hertwig's methods and general aim, and we must leave 
the reader to draw his own conclusions. Many, no doubt, will be satisfied with 
the results arrived at. All will congratulate Dr. Hertwig on the completion 
of his work, albeit some may be more than ever convinced that the end 
of this century sees us still in almost complete ignorance of the causes of 
organic development. M. D. Hill. 


The Last Link. Our Present Knowledge of the Descent of Man. By 
Ernst Haeckel. With Notes and Biographical Sketches by Hans 
Gadow. 8vo, pp. 156. London : Adam and Charles Black, 1898. 
Price 3s. 6d. 

About half of this little book, which seems dear for its size, is occupied with 
the address which Professor Haeckel gave at the Congress of Zoologists at 

154 SOME NEW BOOKS [February 

Cambridge, the other half contains Dr. Gadow's notes, and it is difficult to say 
which half is the more interesting. With his wonted clearness and decisiveness 
Haeckel sums up the conclusions set forth at length in his " Systematische 
Phylogenie," and traces the presumed evolutionary stages from Monera to man. 
Due use is made of Palaeospondylus and Pithecanthropus, and other recent dis- 
coveries, while some hypothetical groups are utilised to eke out the imperfect 
geological record. The essay must be taken as a sketch of phylogenetic possi- 
bilities — and the possible has a wide radius in phylogeny — for it need hardly be 
said that there is room for much difference of opinion as to the systematic posi- 
tion of many of the types. What we are afraid of is that the uncritical and 
unsuspicious may infer from this lucid exposition that there is no longer any 
doubt that " the Dipnoi form the actual link between fishes and Amphibia," 
that " Sphenodon is the reptile which stands nearest to the main stem of our 
ancestry," or that the acknowledgment of the affinity of Vertebrates and Tuni- 
cates " has abolished the erroneous hypothesis that the Vertebrata may have 
arisen from Annelids or from other Articulata." These and many similarly 
decisive statements may turn out to be true, but surely there is at present 
warrant for a reasonable argument over any of them. We have great admira- 
tion for Haeckel's genius, but his decisiveness often becomes perilously like 
dogmatism ; nor can we conceal our disappointment to find him saying that it 
would be better to return to the Mosaic cosmogony than to agree with Weis- 

Dr. Gadow furnishes terse and vivid biographical sketches of Lamarck, 
Etienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (variously referred to also as Geoffroy, Geoffroy 
Saint-Hilaire, and Saint-Hilaire), Cuvier, von Baer, Johannes Mueller, Virchow, 
Cope, von Koelliker, Gegenbaur, and Haeckel himself. Besides these sketches, 
there are notes on the theory of cells, factors of evolution, and geological time. 
Here and there we notice what appear to us to be defects in the historical 
notes, and we venture to give three illustrations. In discussing Lamarck's 
position is it not well to point out that, as regards the evolution of plants, 
Lamarck laid the main emphasis on the direct action of the environment 1 In 
speaking of Etienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, Dr. Gadow says "he maintained 
that, since Nature takes no sudden leaps," etc., but is it not to this author that 
we owe some of the first suggestions as to saltatory or transilient variations 1 
Dr. Gadow credits Huxley with the terms " ectoderm " and "endoderm," but 
were they not Allman's invention 1 We might ask other such questions, but it 
seems ungracious, for the notes are delightful. Not least so is the one with 
which we disagree most heartily — that which maintains that adaptation and 
variation are simultaneous and fundamentally the same, and that acquired 
characters are inherited. X. 


Earth Sculpture. By Professor Geikie, LL.D., D.C.L., F.RS. 8vo, pp. 
xvi. + 320, with 2 plates and 89 figures. Progressive Science Series. 
London: John Murray, 1898. Price 6s. 

During the Victorian era the origin of the earth's surface-features has been 
studied by many geologists, especially by those whose vocations have kept them 
much out of doors. Ramsay, Jukes, Whitaker, Foster and Topley, Lapworth, 
both the Geikies, and others in Britain, and a host of workers in America and on 
the Continent, have all contributed to our present knowledge of the genesis of 
land forms. During the last ten or fifteen years many of those whose business 
it had hitherto been to record geographical facts without concerning themselves 
as to how the phenomena had been brought about, have awakened to the im- 
portance of learning why these features have taken on their present form. In 

1 899] GEOMORPHOLOG Y 155 

other words, geographers are now realising that if we are to obtain any scientific 
knowledge of geographical forms, Ave must first discover how these forms have 
arisen. Geologists have for many years concerned themselves very much re- 
garding this particular question, and now their fellow-workers the geographers 
are realising the importance of making up for lost time, and are specialising more 
and more every year in their studies of the origin of land features. So rapid 
are the strides that have been made in this direction within the last decade that 
the geologist is already beginning to be left behind. Those who have closely 
followed the development of the science of Geomorphology are fully aware that 
its foremost exponents at the present day are to be found in America ; and on 
the Continent there are arising many workers who bid fair ere long to distance 
even their American brethren. 

Thus it happens that the development of Geomorphology has reached a 
phase at which that science forms a kind of debateable land between the 
respective territories of the geographer and the geologist ; and, indeed, it seems 
destined in the near future to take up a position as an independent science, 
which will bear much the same relation to its parent sciences that Mineralogy 
does to Chemistry and Mathematics, or that Palaeontology does to Biology and 

For many years Professor Geikie has been one of our foremost exponents of 
this branch of his science, and in the handsome volume of nearly three hundred 
pages which Mr. Murray has published under the title of "Earth Sculpture," 
the author has given us a summary of his own views on the origin of surface- 
features in general, and in particular of those of his native land. The book is 
written with that lucidity of style for which the author and his brother have so 
long been famous. The get up of the book, as one might have expected from 
the reputation of the publishing firm, is in every way excellent. Besides the 
89 figures in the text, there are two reproductions of photographs by Mr. W. E. 
Carnegie Dickson, showing in an admirable manner the mural weathering of 
granite in Glen Eunach, in the Cairngorm Mountains. J. G. G. 


The Life of Henry Drummond. By George Adam Smith. 8vo, pp. 506, 
with portrait. London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1898. Price 7s. 6d. 

The author, who was intimate with Drummond from their college days until 
the end, has gathered all possible material for his work, and no one else could 
have written the book half so well. Its only fault was inevitable ; one learns 
of the extent of Drummond's life, but its peculiar harmony is somewhat lost ; 
memory is still too particular and sharp ; the book is new wine. 

Perhaps the author might have estimated more highly the significance of 
Drummond's larger writings. They are the only spontaneous and ingenuous 
flower of the doctrine of design within many years. Drummond lived in the 
impression of nature and experience as one and divine ; it was accidental that 
as Bohme, under the same impulse, used astrological terms, so Drummond spoke 
in the no less inadequate language of current scientific doctrine. He found the 
unity of the world neither in its dust, nor in a blind monstrous will, nor in a 
dead system of concepts, nor in anything poorer than man, but in that which is 
at least human all through. He seriously attempted a Theistic and even a 
Christian doctrine of nature and experience, and he studied living creatures and 
men's lives in detail to that end. His work was premature ; it was an impres- 
sion rather than a construction ; but it stands as an isolated example of that 
attempt without which theology cannot live. But the student was only part 
of the man, and probably not the chief part ; these pages show an experience 
and a nature of unusual width and graciousness. S. 

156 SOME NEW BOOKS [febbuaby 


Outlines of Vertebrate Palaeontology for Students of Zoology. By Arthur 
Smith Woodward. 8vo, pp. xxvi + 470. Cambridge : University 
Press, 1898. Price 14s. 

This is a work to which all students of vertebrate palaeontology have been 
looking forward with lively interest, both because of the reputation of its 
author, and of the peculiar advantages which the great collections of the British 
Museum offer for fresh and original treatment of the subject. The volume is 
to be read and reviewed for what it purports to be, as explained by the author 
in the preface and elsewhere, namely, a brief sketch of the palaeontology of the 
A'ertebrata, intended for students of vertebrate morphology and zoology, who 
are desirous of examining in detail the palaeontological aspect of their subject. 
It need not be placed beside works of a monographic character, nor even more 
exhaustive educational works, such as Zittel's " Palaeontologie." And it is 
greatly needed for the very purpose which the editors had in mind, namely, for 
students of the various branches of vertebrate zoology, for it is becoming more 
clear daily that the educational gap between living and dead vertebrates is 
entirely unnatural ; that there are no vertebrates which can be thoroughly 
understood without recourse to palaeontology. A notable instance of the 
danger of ignoring palaeontological evidence is found in the numerous errors 
which persist in the otherwise magnificent " Vergleichende Anatomie " of Gegen- 
baur, recently published as the consummation of a lifelong work. 

In most respects the " Vertebrate Palaeontology " meets its purpose admir- 
ably, and can be placed in the hands of students with the teacher acting as a 
guide. In other respects it is somewhat open to criticism when compared with 
the best models of didactic writing. Moreover, the prevailing knowledge of 
Palaeontology is so limited, that the majority of teachers will not be able to 
give the critical suggestions and corrections which are here and there necessary, 
in order that the treatment may be transparently clear. This is due, perhaps, to 
the fact that the author, as an eminent specialist who has not given particular 
attention to teaching, overestimates the capacity of his student readers. It is 
true that the style is lucid and admirable, the drawings are well selected and 
beautifully executed — a very large number of them being original — but in many 
cases there is an absence of the concise definition and sharp demarcation of the 
characters of different groups which one finds in such a model work as Huxley's 
" Comparative Anatomy of the Vertebrates." 

While the subject is logically developed, each section being introduced by a 
concise description of some typical form, there is a looseness and uncertainty in 
the use of scientific terms and nomenclature which would leave the average 
student in a state of confusion. For example, the cartilaginous supports spoken 
of as " endoskeletal rods" (page 19), are defined as " baseosts " (p. 20), where 
they lie within the fin proper, and the same elements are termed " radial car- 
tilages " later on (p. 30). Similarly, the rods lying within the body are defined 
as "axonosts" (p. 20), as "basal cartilages" (p. 23) — a term readily confused 
with baseosts — as " endoskeletal supports " (p. 24). 

The query " What's in a name % " so far as it applies to text-books, should be 
answered by the rule : A single name is of value ; it should be once clearly defined 
■with its synonyms and then used consistently throughout. A similar indecision 
is observed in the descriptions of the vertebral elements, especially in the 
description of the unpaired or ventral vertebral elements, which are termed 
"hypocentra" in describing the Fishes, "hypocentra or intercentra " in describ- 
ing the Amphibia, "intercentra (hypocentra)" in describing the Reptilia, and 
"intercentra" pure and simple in the later portions of the work. Parentheti- 
cally it may be observed that, upon page 127, the paired ventral pieces of the 
vertebrae of the Branchiosaurian and Microsaurian vertebrae are termed " hypo- 


centra " ; tins is possibly in deference to the views of Cope and Baur as to the 
homologies of these elements, but in the reviewer's opinion both these writers 
were mistaken, for if these parts are homologised at all with the elements of a 
compound vertebra, they must be considered as pleurocentra, both because of 
their paired structure, and of their relations to the neurapophyses and ribs. 

A similar inconsistency, which is perhaps even more serious, between the 
earlier and later pages of the work, is seen in the use of the terms "scpiamosal " 
and " supratemporal " ; all through the portions relating to the Teleostome fishes 
and Stegocephalia, the dorsal anterior element immediately behind the post- 
orbital is termed " squamosal," while the ventral or posterior element is termed 
"supratemporal." In the latter part of the work these terms are reversed, and 
the ventral posterior element in contact with the quadrate is properly termed 
"squamosal" ; while the dorsal anterior element in the Theriodontia, Pythono- 
morpha, and most subsequent sections is properly termed " supratemporal " or 
" prosquamosal " (Fig. 9G, p. 153; Fig. 117, p. 192). As pointed out by Baur, 
these bones were first named by Owen in this manner, and it is obvious that 
the part nearest the quadrate should throughout be termed " squamosal," 
because the term originated in mammalian anatomy, in which there is no 
prosquamosal or supratemporal element. 

Another debateable use of terms, which concerns homology, is that upon 
page 125, in the description of the dermal bones of the pectoral girdle of the 
Stegocephalia, where mention is made only of an interclavicle and clavicles ; the 
former being regarded by the highest authority, Gegenbaur, not as an inter- 
clavicle at all, but as an episternum (that is, a part which, originates by the 
union of dermal elements in the middle line of the chest, just as the para- 
sternum or abdominal ribs originate in the region of the abdomen). There is 
thus in the Stegocephalia an episternum, a clavicle and a supraclavicle (Seeley = 
cleithrum, Gegenbaur), and this latter element, which the author fails to men- 
tion, is of especial interest because it represents a vestige of the ancestral sus- 
pension of the pectoral girdle from the skull, as observed in the Teleostomi. A 
minor oversight is in the absence of definition of the term " amphistylic " (p. 
33), while of more importance is the absence of definition, either in the text or 
in footnotes, of the important ordinal and subordinal terms, such as " haplistia," 
" actinistia," " rhipidistia," terms originally applied in full recognition of their 
phylogenetic significance, and therefore worth fixing in the minds of students 
by a brief reference to their meaning. 

The figures for the most part are extremely good, especially the original 
synoptic series drawn from Amphibian and Reptilian skulls in the British 
Museum. They are marred only by the abbreviations, which coincide with the 
inconsistencies in the use of terms, above pointed out. The Mammalian figures 
are the least satisfactory because the author has been obliged to borrow more 
largely. On page 295 is inserted Marsh's restoration of Coryphodon, which is 
to be regretted, because it gives an entirely wrong impression of the chief 
characters of this animal. Here also we regret the use of the term Dinoceras, 
which is pre-occupied by Uintatherilim. 

It is interesting to turn from these matters, which are of a more or less 
technical character, to the discussion of the far more important treatment of the 
relationships, phylogeny, and classification of the Vertebrata. Naturally in this 
part of the work specialists find their greatest interest. 

The author, in the attitude of teacher, rightly takes a conservative position 
upon most of the open phylogenetic problems. He clearly shows that he leans 
towards the theory, that the closest relations of the Amphibia are with the 
Crossopterygian fishes, and of the Mammalia with the Anomodont Reptiles. In 
tracing the descent of the Mammalia proper, he adheres practically to the 
theory of Huxley, namely, of the phyletic succession of Monotremes, Marsupials, 
and of Placentals, the main objection to which is that no evidence can be 
advanced in its favour. He accordingly regards the Mesozoic mammals, and 

H NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 84. 

158 SOME NEW BOOKS [febri im 

especially the Purbeck and Conio types as representing onlj Monotremes and 
Marsupials; and from this we infer thai be considers the Eutheriaor Placentals 
of comparatively late origin, A fewerrors bave found their way into the treat 

incut of tin' mammals, which may be corrected in a later edition. The teeth of 

\ne\lo|H>da (page 307) are said to resemble those of the Rhinoceros. This is 

evidently incorrect, as they stand nearest the teeth of the Titanothcres. and 

hence of the Artiodactyls, Erroneously, we believe, the author follows Lydekker 
and Flowerin placing all the early Perissodactyla among the Lophiodontidae, 
disregarding the fad that in the Lower Eocene all the modem families oi 
Perissodactyls are sharply defined. This leads to a further confusion in 
reference to the family Palaeotheriidae, which is said to approach the Rhino 
ceroses, The conception of the family distinctness oi early ungulates agrees 
with that held by the author himself in his treatment oi the Fishes, namely. 
that family lines should correspond with phyla, and not with the parallel 
assumption by distinct phyla oi similar characters, 

One oi the most remarkable things about this work is, that the author 
appears to be less clear and logical in the major classification of the Fishes, his 
own special field oi work, than he is among the Reptiles. This appears io arise 
from far too great reliance upon the lines drawn by Keichort and Huxley 

between u autostylic " and "hyostylic" types, and from setting aside the really 
fundamental characters oi division between cartilaginous fishes in which true 
bone is absent, and Tcleostomcs and Ibpnoans, which have more or less true 
bone. Single characters, such as the suspensorium, may be safely employed in 
major classification, provided first that they are not acquired by parallelism, and 
second that they really afford sharp and natural lines of division. Hyostylism 
and autOStylism answer neither oi these criteria. The Klasinobranchs are 
grouped by the author as hyostylic (p, 27), although members oi this subclass 
show every stage oi transition between autOStylism (Hrptanchus) and hvo 

stylism (Jftya). These transitions are obviously adaptations to feeding habits. 

analogous to those which we observ e among reptiles with a loose or swinging, 
and tight or firm, articulation for the angle oi the lower jaw. The autostylic 
Chimcura, with its firmly united upper jaw ami reduced hyomandibular, i- 
adapted to a mode oi feeding upon small molluscs and crustaceans not \ cry 
dissimilar from that of the lizard SphenodoH, in which the iood is firmly seized 
by the anterior teeth and cut up by the molar plates. The loose and swinging 
shark jaws, with the hyomandibular acting as a supporting bar. are to be com 
pared with those oi snakes, in which the mouth is very expansible, and the food 
is swallowed whole, the backward pointing teeth serving to prevent escape. 
Moreover, these terms are misapplied by the author not only in sharks, but in 
other specific cases. The Crossopterygians (p. 69) are defined as " hyostylic M 
y .\ character by the way which would seriously interfere with their position 
among the ancestors oi the pronouncedly autostylic Amphibia), and this is an 
error, for. as observed by Pollard, "On examining the hyomandibular it will be 
seen that it can take very little part in the suspension oi the jaw s."' 

We thus conclude that a close examination oi the suspensorium of all the 
Living and extinct fishes proves that "auto-," "hyo-," and " amphistylism * are 
at the most ordinal characters, and cannot take rank as sub class characters, 
except in the definition oi the Dipnoi, Even then some oi the orders are 
susceptible to adaptive modification, and thus do not present those sharp and 
fast lines oi demarcation which are necessary for ordinal definition. To return 
to C : . I '. it is obvious that, so far as the concrescence oi the palatoquadrate 
oi the skull is concerned, this condition could readily be derived from that seen 
in the Notidani v //< 'ptanchus) simply by fixation, and after carefully comparing 
all the other characters which are assigned by the author to give C/n'iitiunt and 
its allies a subclass position, among the Holooephali, we find that they are no 
greater than those which give the Acanthodii and Pleuropterygii their ordinal 
position, Upon these grounds we conclude that the scheme oi major classifies 


t it >i i of the Fishes (page 27) is entirely unnatural, as ii fails to set forth the 
phylogenetic relations of the Pishes, and confuses the studenl as to the types 
which are actually most nearly allied. 

Passing to the Amphibia, it may be noted (p. 125) that among the chief 
distinctions of the Stegocephalia, the paired condyle is not mentioned. This 
is very important, because flic condyle furnishes one of the only means <>l 
separating these animals from the Pareiasauria. Upon p, II"! the author 
gives :i, very clear conception of what at the present time appears i<> be the 
natural grouping of the Lleptilia, but the tabular classification upon p. Ill 
hardly conforms with the conceptions there set forth. It appears i<> the 
reviewer evident, that the I 'areiasauria, with their solid skulls, entirely lacking 
temporal fossae (except perhaps in Procolophon), should be sharply Bet apart 
from the A.nomodontia. As regards (he. use of the term Auiomodontia in 
preference to Cope's "Theromorpha," it may lie pointed out thai it was 
originally defined and repeatedly used by Owen to include die Dicynodonts 

only, and it. can scarcely he stretched In include the Theriodonfs, with their 

complete dentition, and much less the Pareiasauria with no arcades at all. In 
the diagrams and subsequent treatment of the temporal arches, the lower arch 
is referred in as if it represented a concrescence of I »< »i h upper and lower 

arches. 'This is certainly the case, in the Iclifhyosauria, but not so certainly in 

the other types, [t appears undesirable to perpetuate Cope's term "Pythono 
morpha," because Cope wholly failed to substantiate his claim in opposition to 

Owen, that, these animals were in any way related to the Ophidia. Their 
entire, structure lends to support the theory of Owen, |>o||o, and I'.aur, that 

they branched off from well defined Lizards quite independently of the Snake 

Another surprising feature in this work is the entire absence of mention of the 
important group of Placodontia, animals which an' ordinarily placed among the 

anoinodonl re pi iles, line, examples of which are Ion nil in the British MuS6Uttl. No 

reference is made either to AetosauritSf import ant ami interesting because if .shows 
(he complete dermal armature of the Belodont type, [t is important to note, 

however, that I he author throughout his treatment of the lleptilia, shows a, 

very clear and critical perception of the relations of different types, ami makes 
many original suggestions of value. While retaining Belodon among the 
Crocodilia, he, strongly hints at its relations with the, Dinosauria, as observed 

l»y Fraas, and one cannot compare the line remains of /!(/<>i/<>n and ZcLTldodon 

in the Stuttgart collection without being struck by the ,. iron" resemblance 
between the i wo. 

It should lie made clear, in closing, thai the above discussion of the work 

has hardly left space, in which to point out its many valuable qualities. It 

will find its way into every laboratory where Vertebrate Anatomy is being 

studied, anil will serve, to emphasise, more strongly Ihan ever the, principle for 
which Huxley and ('ope BO long contended, that Vertebrate Ana.foiuy is Only 

comprehensible by the Light of Palaeontology : that the only difference between 

the fossil and recent animal is that, "one has lieen dead longer than the other. 

il. v. o. 

The Rabbit. \\y J. E. Earting. 8vo, pp. viii. \ lT><">. Illustrations. 
London: Longmans, Green, and Co., L898. Price ■ >*. 

This volume of the "Fur, Feather, and Fin Series " is a welcome addition 
to the literature of natural history and field sports. It, will readily find its 

place on the hook shelves of sportsmen and naturalists, and will he of much 

service to gamekeepers and others interested in this useful though mischievous 
rodent. Much ignorance prevails, even amongst those who ought to know 
better, regarding the habits and peculiarities of the rabbit, and the intricacies 
of the law in dealing with the drastic provisions of that ill-advised and dis 

160 SOME NEW BOOKS [February 

appointing enactment, the Ground Game Act. All needful information can be 
easily got from Mr. Harting's book, which is well indexed. The author has 
also much to tell us about rabbits attacking stoats, carrying their young, 
swimming across water, barking and killing trees, and so on, but space forbids 
our entering on these topics. A list is given of ornamental shrubs for under- 
cover which are asserted to be "rabbit proof," and which "will thrive under 
the drip of trees." This is invaluable, and all sportsmen should see that this 
volume is put into the hands of their foresters and gamekeepers. 

Mr. Harting enlarges, we think unnecessarily, on rabbits biting. Few 
sportsmen are ever bitten, for the simple reason that they do not handle many 
maimed rabbits. It is otherwise with gamekeepers, who handle thousands in 
taking them out of traps, and we have more than once seen them severely 
bitten. Again, it is asserted that tame rabbits will not burrow. This is 
erroneous, for we once turned out a black and white doe in a sandy burrow, 
where for several years she reared many litters. When a ferret was put in, 
she always bolted at once, and on two occasions turned and attacked her 
pursuer when it came outside. Being tame, she never attempted to run far 
away, and was often witness to her progeny bolting from the ferret, and being 

On the price of rabbits Mr. Harting says — " Trapped or snared rabbits 
should realise, say, 2s. 9d a couple ; shot ones, 2s. 8d. a coujjle." We should 
much like to know where these prices can be got, as we can undertake to send 
heavy weekly consignments. 

In referring to stoats and weasels, we fear Mr. Harting panders to senti- 
mentalists, for he " would not ruthlessly trap and kill every weasel and stoat on 
the warren," and he faithfully reproduces the old story, which we had regarded 
as exploded, about " improving the stock by killing the weakly ones." As a 
corroboration of his statements he refers to the vole plague of 1892, and says— 
" Beyond doubt the weasel is the natural enemy of field-mice, and no greater 
mistake can be made than to destroy the former when the latter are numerous, 
or threatening to become so." As with lemmings in other countries, there were 
plagues of voles long before the days of game preservation or the trapping of 
weasels, and we venture to affirm that these plagues will occur again. The 
voles attracted all kinds of enemies : short-eared owls gathered and bred in 
their midst, and "blackening trains" of rooks found abundant food. As in 
previous visitations, the plague suddenly disappeared as unaccountably as it 
came, and we fear that Mr. Harting's weasel theory will not hold water. 

In treating of long netting, after describing the process of setting the net, 
Mr. Harting says : " One or more helpers, as the length of net may require, stays 
back to extricate the rabbits from the net, or to knock them on the head with a 
stick as they try to force their way through." Nothing can demonstrate more 
clearly that the author has never seen the long net used, and we fear his infor- 
mation has been accpiired from an unauthentic source. 

We have noticed these points, but it would be gross injustice to suggest 
that they outweigh, or even overshadow, the value of the work. It is a 
delightful book, and one of genuine usefulness. The illustrations are carefully 
done, and the whole form of the book does credit to the publishers. 

Tom Speedy. 


A New Astronomy. By Prof. David P. Todd, M.A. Ph.D. 8vo, pp. 480, 
with figures. New York, Cincinnati, Chicago : American Book 
Company, 1898. Price 7s. 6d. 

Prof. Todd is to be congratulated on having given to astronomical science 
a most valuable book, the need of which has certainly been felt by many 
teachers of elementary astronomy. There is nothing that tends so much to 


promote a lively interest in the mind of the student as the practice of getting 
results from experiments of his own, and it is on this true principle that the 
author has based a great part of his woi*k. Wherever possible, he suggests 
practical observations which, while requiring only the simplest instrumental equip- 
ment, naturally lead to a clear comprehension of the problems. The author's 
explanations are adapted to beginners, and the student is taught throughout to 
think for himself, instead of simply burdening his memory with disconnected 
data. It is safe to say that any one who will carefully follow this able guide, 
will become acquainted not only with the most interesting results of astronomy, 
but also with the methods which are required to deduce these from observation. 
An extensive series of original illustrations form a valuable feature of the book, 
which can be cordially recommended to all who are interested in the teaching 
of astronomy. J. Halm. 


La Cytologie experimentale. Essai de cytomecanique. By Alphonse Labbe, 
Docteur es Sciences, conservateur des collections de zoologie a la 
Sorbonne. 8vo, pp. viii and 187, with 56 figures. Paris: Carre et 
Naud, 1898. Price 5 francs. 

As every biologist knows, cytology has ceased to be merely observational, 
and has become definitely experimental. But the literature embodying the 
advances which have been made by this new departure is scattered, and in 
some cases not very accessible. Hence the value of this compact little book, 
which supplies a clear and terse introduction to the subject, which may be read 
at a sitting. Dr. Labbe, who has himself made some valuable contributions 
to cell-lore, has here brought together illustrative examples of the most im- 
portant concrete results of recent work on the influence of environment upon the 
cell, the inter-relations of nucleus and cytoplasm, " tropisms " and " tactisms," 
experimental embryology, and the like. There is no attempt at exhaustive 
treatment, which would have spoiled the book, and there is an unusual reserve 
of speculative suggestion, which is probably also wise. The book aims at being 
a student's introduction to the facts of the case, and as such it is admirable. 

J. A. T. 


It is not generally known that Servia possesses four media of scientific 
thought. Two of these are found in the Srpska KraPevska Akademija, of 
Belgrade, which publishes proceedings called Ghlasa in octavo, and Spomenik, 
transactions, in quarto. The word Ghlasa corresponds to the German Nachricht 
and Spomenik to the German Denkschrift. Both have been running since about 
1888. The third is Nastavnih, the organ of the Servian professional society, 
a journal similar to the now defunct Science Progress, consisting of original 
articles only ; while .the fourth and last is Delo, or Journal of Literature and 
Science. A set of the first three, in so far as they pertain to mathematical 
and biological matter, has recently been received by the British Museum 
(Nat. Hist.). 


Among the noteworthy papers which have recently appeared are two which 
represent the first efforts of Croatian and Servian zoologists to deal with the 
subject. One of these papers, by Velimir Dezelic, is entitled " Foraminifera 
jadranskoga mora," deals with the Foraminifera of the Adriatic, and was 
published in the ninth volume of the Glasnik Ilrvats Narod. Drustm, in 1896. 
Unfortunately we have not yet seen it. The other is a paper by P. S. Pavlovic, 

i6 2 SOME NEW BOOKS [February 

" Prilogh poznava'u Foraminifera iz II. Mediteranskikli slojeva u Srbiji," and 
was published in the Ghlasa Srpslce KraVevske Akademije, pt. lvi. 1898. This 
deals with the Mediterranean deposits near Belgrade, and tigures are given of 
some interesting Frondiculariae. Another paper is by Detlev Lienau of 
Konigsberg, and reads " Fusulinella, ihr Schalenbau und ihre systematische 
Stellung" (Zeitschr. Detdsch. Geol. Ges. 1898). Dr. Lienau comes to the 
conclusion that Fusulinella is a true calcareous Foraminifer, and that it does 
not belong to the Endothyridae, as stated by Neumayr and Ehumbler. An 
elaborate paper has also recently appeared in Palaeontographica, vol. xliv., by 
Dr. Schellwein, dealing with the Alpine Fusulina limestone. Numerous forms 
are figured and described, falling into many new species. Eight plates 
accompany the text, of which six represent the genera Fusulina and Sclavagerina. 
A general paper, by Charles Upton, on " Chalk under the Microscope " (Proc. 
Cotteswold Nat. Field Club, vol. xii. pt. 3, 1898), treats of the contents of a 
piece of upper chalk from Purley, and is accompanied by an excellent plate of 
various forms. 

"The Lower Cretaceous Gryphaeas of the Texas Eegion." By It. T. Hill 
and T. W. Vaughan. {Bull U.S. Geol. Sun., No. 151, 8vo. 1898). 
Pp. 66, 35 pis. 

This paper treats of the species, stratigraphical occurrence, and relationships 
of one particular group out of the many kinds of fossil oysters found in the 
lower cretaceous formations of Texas. The group includes those forms which 
have been referred to Gryphaea pitcheri, Morton, and is of great importance 
owing to the assistance which a knowledge of the forms composing it renders in 
determining the true horizon of certain beds in geological sections. 

Unfortunately inadequate descriptions based upon imperfect specimens, the 
true horizons of which had not been recorded, coupled witli the loss for a long- 
period of the type specimen of G. pitcheri, Morton, resulted in a fearful 
confusion of nomenclature, and gave rise to much controversy both as to the 
species and the beds in which it occurred. 

From this condition of chaos the authors of this most carefully written 
memoir have extricated the subject. They show that under (Iryphuea pitcheri 
no less than eight species have been included, and amongst them the familiar 
upper chalk G. vesicularis. Six members of the group, including two new 
species, belong to the lower cretaceous. The type species itself proved to be 
identical with G. corrugata, Say, which name consecpiently stands. 

All these forms are fully described and figured, their geological distribution 
and probable phylogeny is traced, and the only point which a preliminary 
investigation suggests as wanting is some allusion to the late Felix Bernard's 
papers on the morphology of the hinge when dealing with the nepionic stage of 
G. ]Vas//itaensis. This'last-named species, by the bye, calls to mind the well- 
known G. vesicularis of the upper cretaceous, both of Europe and America, and 
was doubtless its lineal ancestor. Many of the lower cretaceous forms here 
figured present apparent affinities to European species, though how tar, if at all, 
the authors have studied the latter does not appear. 

Anyhow much more work remains to be done on this difficult group of 
Ostreidae before satisfactory conclusions can be reached concerning them. To 
begin with, as the authors point out, "nearly all of the species of fossil oysters 
have been founded upon adult forms, without knowledge of the life-history of 
the individual. . . . It is regrettable that full suites of specimens represent- 
ing all the species hitherto described have not been studied." In contra- 
distinction to accepted authorities the observations of the writers of this 
monograph lead to the conclusion " that certain forms of the Ostreidae possess 
very distinct specific characters, have definite geologic horizons, and are (BV) 2 
of the greatest value in stratigraphic work." 

1899] SERIALS 163 

The authorities of the British Museum do not send out their " Catalogue of 
Birds " for review, but we must notice the completion of this great undertaking 
by the recent publication of volume xxvi. by Dr. Bowdler Sharpe and Mr. W. 
R. Ogilvie Grant. This is really the twenty-seventh volume issued since the 
work was begun twenty-five years ago. This catalogue, prepared by eleven 
authors and edited by Dr. Bowdler Sharpe, gives an account of 11,614 species 
belonging to 2255 genera and 124 families. Such additions and corrections as 
may be necessary will be published in supplementary volumes. 

The Geological Society of London has undertaken the publication of the 
manuscript in its possession of a portion of the third volume of Hutton's " Theory 
of the Earth." This volume, edited by Sir Archibald Geikie, will be printed in 
the style of the first and second volumes of the same work, and will contain about 
300 pages. It will be issued in paper covers. The price to the public is 
3s. Gd., and as only a limited number will be issued, intending purchasers 
should apply at once to the Secretary. 

As No. 25 of its publications, the Geological Survey of Norway has issued 
a geological map, with description by K. O. Bj^rlykke, of Christiania and 
environs. This reproduces in more popular form the recent researches of 
Kjerulf and Br0gger, and may be of some use to the geologically-minded 
tourist. This Survey has also issued an account of its exhibits at Bergen in 
1898, with which are combined articles of more permanent value on the 
Geological survey, the mining, and stone industry of Norway. 

The first number of Science Work, the advent of which was noted in Natural 
Science for January, is chiefly noticeable for its list " of the leading contents of 
recent scientific magazines and periodicals"; the list is classified under the 
various sciences. For some reason the names of most of our own contributors 
are misspelled ; indeed misprints of like nature are not rare throughout. 
Useful features are the first instalments of a " Directory of Local Societies " 
and a "Directory of Lecturers." The editor, Mr. Waller Jeffs, evidently means 
to make this new venture as successful as his firmly established journal, 

In the Verhandlungen der russischen mineralogischen GeseUschaft, 1898, Bd. 
xxxv. pp. 1-54, Th. Tschernyschew has a paper on the fossil sponges from the 
Permo-Carboniferous (Artinsk) and Carboniferous beds of the Ural and Timan. 
The paper, which is in German, is well illustrated by five plates and many 
figures in the text, mostly photographic. The sponges belong to the genera 
Pemmatites, Kazania, Haplistion (?), and Stuckenhergia, the last being new. 
In the sponge-fauna, as well as in other characters, the author finds a resem- 
blance between the Artinsk beds and the upper horizon of the Permo-Carbon- 
iferous rocks of Spitzbergen, the Prodiictus-he&ving chert. 

The Palaeontographical Society's volume for the year 1898 has just been 
issued, and contains — The "Palaeozoic Phyllopoda," Part III., by Professor T. 
Rupert Jones and Dr. H. Woodward, with 8 plates ; the " Carboniferous 
Lamellibranchiata," Part III., by Dr. Wheelton Hind, with 10 plates; the 
" Inferior Oolite Ammonites," Part X. (Supplement No. I.), by Mr. S. S. Buck- 
man, with 4 plates ; the "Carboniferous Cephalopoda of Ireland," Part II., by 
Dr. A. H. Foord, with 10 plates ; the "Devonian Fauna of the South of Eng- 
land," Vol. III. Part III., by the Rev. G. F. Whiclborne, with 17 plates. The 
volume for 1899 is in preparation, and will contain the commencement of a 
new monograph on the " Mollusca of the Cretaceous Formations," by H. 


Born 22nd February 1843; Died 29th May 1898. 


Dr. G. H. Theodor Eimer, Professor of Zoology and Comparative Anatomy at 
Tubingen, was born at Stafa, in the Canton of Zurich, where his father was 
district medical officer. His- earliest years were passed at Freiburg, in Breisgau. 
At twelve years of age he entered the Gymnasium of Bruchsal. On leaving the 
Gymnasium he became a student in the medical faculty of the University of 
Tubingen, where he was in zoological subjects a pupil of Leydig. In 1863-64 
he studied at Freiburg, in 1864-65 at Heidelberg, and in the latter year passed 
the examination in Natural Science at Karlsruhe. In the following winter he was 
again at Tubingen, and thence he went to Berlin to study the practical subjects 
of medicine. During the two years he was at Berlin he came much under the in- 
fluence of Virchow. He graduated at the German metropolis in medicine and 
surgery in 1867, and in the following year passed the state examination at 
Karlsruhe. He had formed the resolution of devoting himself to research instead 
of practising the medical profession, and, on the advice of Virchow, went again to 
Freiburg to work in Weismann's laboratory. Here his interest in the problems of 
evolution, already aroused, was strongly developed, and he commenced the in- 
vestigations which led him to views in many respects diametrically opposed to 
those of his teacher. In 1869 he acted as Prosector of Zootomy to Kolliker in 
Wurzburg, but in 1870 he gave up academical pursuits for a time, and the day 
after his marriage set out with his bride for the seat of the Franco-German war. 
He took part in the campaign as volunteer field-surgeon, while his wife was a 
volunteer field-nurse. The hardships of the campaign enfeebled his health, and 
in 1871 he went to Italy to recuperate. During this and subsequent visits to 
Italy he carried out his well-known researches on Medusae and other marine 
forms, and on the variations of the lizard. On his return to Wurzburg in 1871 
he set up as privat-docent in zoology. In 1874 he became Inspector of the 
Grand Ducal Museum at Darmstadt, and Professor of Zoology at the Polytechnic 
High School of that city, and in the following year was invited to succeed 
Leydig as Professor of Zoology at Tubingen in the University in which he com- 
menced his academical career. 

Although he made various contributions to histology and other subjects, 
Eimer's most important investigations are those which deal with problems of 
evolution. He has taken a prominent part in the tournaments waged over these 
questions during the last two decades. Not entirely neglecting other jdienomena, 
he gave his attention principally to the external characters which distinguish 
species and genera from one another in various groups, and has contributed power- 
fully to the growing conviction that such characters are not to be explained on the 
principle of simple utility. In his work on Lacerta muralis, and his papers on 
the markings of mammals published in "Humboldt" between 1878 and 1888, 


feb. 1899] G. H. THEODOR EIMER 165 

he pointed out the evidence that changes in markings occur in a definite order, 
and are excited by change of conditions. He was strongly convinced that 
variation occurs, not in all directions, but in a limited number of definite 
directions, in other words that the direction of variation is largely pre-ordained 
by the constitution of the organism. In 1888 he published a summary of his 
facts and conclusions under the title " Entstehung der Arten, auf Grund vom 
Vererben erworbener Eigenschaften, nach den Gesetzen organischen Wachsens." 
He followed this up by works on the characters of butterflies, in which he 
elaborated his method of investigation in great detail. The first of these, in 
two parts (1889 and 1895), referred to the species of the genus Papilio, and 
allied forms. His latest work, " Orthogenesis der S'chmetterlinge," was published 
in 1897, and contains a mass of important and interesting detail. 

Eimer's powers of lucid exposition were not perhaps of the highest order, 
and his methods of controversy were often too personal and passionate. But 
on the other hand his researches are very original, penetrating, and illuminating, 
and his bitterness, however much to be regretted, was not unnatural. It is 
unlikely that the laws he was fond of formulating will prove to be of general 
application, but his investigations of diagnostic characters, as for example in the 
case of leaf-like butterflies, bring to light important phenomena whose signifi- 
cance had not previously been perceived, and he has left behind him a body of 
work which will be of permanent value in the pursuit of one great object of 
biological research, namely, the discovery of the particular causes of the 
characters of organisms. J. T. C. 

The deaths are also announced of Mr. John Barrow, F.R.S., who died in 
Dec. 1898 at the age of 91 — he took a leading part in promoting the search for 
Sir John Franklin; on May 13, 1898, at Stockholm, Dr. Sven Borgstrom, 
bryologi'st, aged 72 ; Dr. Thomas Sanderson Bulmer, by suicide, at Sierra 
Blanca, Texas, on Oct. 5 — a student of American archaeology and ethnology ; 
on Aug. 14, 1898, at Taftville, Conn., Prof. John Comfort Fillmore, ethno- 
logist, of Pomona College, California ; Camille Flagey, lichenologist, in 
Algiers, aged 62 ; Joseph Gibelli, Professor of Botany at Turin University ; 
the entomologist, Louis A. Glaser of New Brighton, at Mannheim, Germany ; 
on Dec. 21, Alfredo Antunes Kanthack, Professor of Pathology in Cambridge 
University, aged 35 ; Mr. Christopher Young Michie, a leading Scottish 
authority on forestry, author of The Larch, The Practice of Forestry, etc. ; on 
Oct. 23, Dr. Hermann Muller, privat-docent for bacteriology at Vienna, 
aged 32 ; Jacques Passe, an assistant in the laboratory of physiological 
psychology at the Sorbonne, well known for his researches on the sense of 
smell ; Dr. August Pollmann, teacher of agriculture at the Agricultural 
Academy, Bonn, on May 16, 1898, aged 85; on Aug. 6, at Irrenhaus, Emerich 
Vellay, formerly assistant at the Hungarian entomological station ; G. 
Venturi, the Austrian bryologist, on June 5, 1898, bequeathing his moss 
herbarium and library to the city of Trent ; on Jan. 1 5, Mr. Andrew 
Wilson, L.D.S., late Vice-President of the Royal Physical Society, Edinburgh 
— an expert odontologist and an enthusiastic student of Mammalian dentition 
and Lepidoptera. We regret also to have to announce that Dr. Henry Alleyne 
Nicholson, Professor of Natural History in the University of Aberdeen, died 
after a short illness, on January 19, at the age of fifty-five. An obituary 
notice will be given next month. 



The very just note in your December number, pp. 365-367, leads me to ask, 
Where does the artist come in, supposing he is not the author 1 Walker, years 
ago, described some Diptera in a more or less unintelligible manner ; but 
Westwood prepared the illustrations, -which were very excellent, and served for 
the recognition of the species. Now should these illustrations be credited to 
Walker? Ashmead, in the Canadian Entomologist, 1898, p. 309, has the 
following note — " Allomorpha [a genus of saw-flies] may be wrongly placed in 
my table. Cameron says nothing about the venation of the hind wings. His 
description reads — 'Alar neuration resembles Strongylogaster {Cingulatus 
group).' Now, aS'. cingulatus has two discal cells in the hind wings. Kirby, 
however, who, I believe, examined the type, says — ' Hind wings with one discal 
cell." The artist, however, employed by Kirby has figured it on Plate X., 
No. 22, without a cell in the hind wings I In my perplexity I have followed 
the artist, since I find his figures of saw-flies known to me perfectly accurate." 

Now, if the artist referred to by Ashmead is better authority than Kirby 
or Cameron, so that when a difficulty arises his figure is assumed to be correct 
rather than their descriptions, does he not deserve to be quoted as an author 1 
Of course, the artist does not necessarily possess any technical or critical 
knowledge of the objects he draws, nor can he be made responsible for the 
labelling of his figures. At the same time, it is probable that if the scientific 
artist received more recognition for his work, that work would be better done. 
I do not think that at present we always treat him fairly. 


Mksilla Park, New Mexico, U.S.A. 


Sir — After a careful study of the facts already ascertained regarding 
telegony — that peculiar phenomenon of cross-breeding, popularly termed 
" throw-back " — we see that these can be attributed to reversion with almost as 
much likelihood as to telegony. Nevertheless, we feel assured that telegonic 
effects are sometimes shown by the offspring ; and as this question is of the 
highest importance to any theory of heredity, we seek through your columns 
to extend our appeal for co-operation in experiment, and suggest the following : — 

A female of a wild species (e.g. the wild rabbit) should first hear young to 
a male of a domesticated breed of the same species (e.g. the Angora rabbit), and 
then to a male of her own breed. If, then, the progeny of this union were to 
show any traces of the first union, they must be due to telegony ; for, of course, 
no type can revert to one more differentiated than itself. Birds might be 
experimented on in a similar way, the first crosses being, e.g. — the " barn-door " 
cock — pheasant hen ; a domesticated drake — wild duck. 

We are ourselves conducting as many experiments as we can, but telegony 
is without doubt of extreme rarity, and the more trials that are made the 
greater is the chance of success. Those who will assist are asked if they will 
kindly send the skins of those parents and young which display telegony : also, 
in the case of birds, to send an egg out of each batch. — We are, etc., 

Alex. Meek. 

Durham College of Science, Newcastle-on-Tyne. 




The following appointments have recently been made : — Elmer D. Ball, to be 
assistant entomologist at the Colorado Experiment Station ; Dr. J. Behrens, of 
Carlsruhe, to be bacteriologist to the newly-founded biological section for agri- 
culture and forestry at Berlin ; J. P. Blanton, to be president of the University 
of Idaho, and director of its Experimental Station ; Dr. L. Bordas, to be chief of 
zoological work in the faculty of science at Marseilles ; Antonio Borzi, to be 
professor of zoology and comparative anatomy at Palermo University ; Mr. 
Thomas Bowhill, F.E.C.V.S., author of "Manual of Bacteriological Technique," 
to be bacteriologist to the Glamorgan County Council ; Karl Brischke, as 
director of the Botanical Garden in Thorn ; C. W. Burkett, to be associate professor 
of agriculture at the New Hampshire College ; Dr. John M. Clarke, to be state 
palaeontologist of New York ; Dr. Dannenberg, to be professor of mineralogy 
and geology at the Mining Academy in Clausthal ; Prof. J. R. Ainsworth 
Davis, as additional examiner in zoology in the University of Edinburgh ; Dr. 
Rudolf Disselhorst, to be professor of animal physiology at Halle University ; 
Dr. Eugen Dubois {Pithecanthropus), to be professor of geology at Amsterdam 
University ; Dr. E. P. Felt, to succeed the late J. A. Lintner, as state ento- 
mologist of New York ; M. T. French, to be professor of agriculture at Idaho 
College and Experimental Station ; Max von Frey, from assistant professor to 
full professor of physiology at Zurich University ; Mr. Gravier, to be assistant 
in the Paris Museum of Natural History in the' place of the late Felix Bernard ; 
Dr. D. Frazer Harris, to be lecturer in physiology at St. Andrews University ; 
Dr. Hettner, of Tubingen, to be professor of geography at Wurzburg University ; 
Dr. G. Bertram Hunt, as assistant in the department of pathological histology 
at the University of London ; Dr. Ernst Kalkowsky, to be director of the 
mineralogical, geological, and archaeological collections at Dresden ; Dr. Klock- 
mann, of Clausthal, to be professor of mineralogy and geology in the Technical 
Institution at Aix ; Dr. Kolkwitz, to be professor of histology at Innsbruck 
University ; Dr. Casimir Kwietniewski, as assistant in the cabinet of zoology 
and anatomy at Messina University ; Dr. Lambert, as assistant at the 
plant - physiology experimental station in Geisenheim ; Dr. Lepetet, to 
be professor of histology in Clermont University ; Dr. James Little, 
as Regius professor of medicine in Dublin University ; Alberto Lofgren, 
to be director of the botanical gardens at Sao Paulo, Brazil ; Charles P. 
Lounsbury, of Amherst, Mass., as government entomologist at Cape Town ; 
Dr. R. Stewart MacDougall, as examiner in agricultural entomology in the 
University of Edinburgh ; Dr. de Marignac, to be professor of hygiene at 
Geneva University ; Dr. F. J. H. Merrill to be state geologist of New York, the 
palaeontologist work being taken by Dr. Clarke (see above) ; A. S. Miller, to be 
geologist to the Idaho Experiment Station ; Dr. M. von Minder, as assistant in 
botany at Giessen University ; Dr. Heinrich Obersteiner, to be full professor of 
the physiology and pathology of the central nervous system at Vienna Univer- 
sity ; C. S. Parsons, as director of the Arizona Agricultural Experiment Station 



in Tucson ; Prof. G. Perroncito, as director in the Royal Veterinary School of 
Turin ; Dr. G. N. Pitt, of Guy's Hospital, as examiner in medicine at Cam- 
bridge University ; Dr. Fritz Roemer, of Jena, as assistant in the zoological 
department of the Museum fur Naturkunde, Berlin ; Dr. D. Saccardo, to assist 
Prof. F. Morini in the botanical garden of Bologna University : W. G. Savage, 
M.B., as assistant in the department of bacteriology at University of London ; 
Dr. Fritz Schaudinn, as privat-docent for zoology in Berlin University ; Dr. 
Schroeter, as privat-docent for botany in Bonn University ; Dr. L. S. Schultze, 
as assistant at the Zoological Institute of Jena University ; Dr. Carl Freiherr 
von Tubeuf, of Munich, to be director of the botanical laboratory in the Bio- 
logical Experiment Station for Agriculture and Forestry at Berlin ; J. A. Thom- 
son, as additional examiner in zoology in the University of Glasgow ; Alexandre 
Trotter, as assistant in the botanic garden of Padua ; Dr. R, Wagner, of Munich, 
as assistant in the Institute for Vegetable Physiology at Heidelberg ; Dr. Karl 
Wehmer, to be professor of mycology at the Technical College in Hannover ; 
Dr. N. Wille, to be curator of the Museum and Herbarium of the University of 
Christiania ; Jas. Withycome, to be assistant director and agriculturist of the 
Oregon Experiment Station ; Dr. R. W. Zimmermann, to be professor-extra- 
ordinarius of anatomy at Berne University ; Dr. Oskar Zoth, to be professor- 
extraordinarius of physiology at Graz University. 

Among the New Year's honours we notice a baronetcy for the surgeon Sir 
Sir Henry Thompson. Prof. W. C. Roberts Austen, of the Mint, is promoted to 
be K.C.B., and Mr. Thiselton Dyer, the director of Kew Gardens, to be 
K.C.M.G., in recognition of services rendered to Colonial Governments. Pure 
science, it will be seen, meets with no recognition, yet see Natural Science, vol. 
xiv. p. 1. 

Mr. William Christopher MacDonald, merchant, of Montreal, has received 
the honour of knighthood in recognition of his gifts to educational and philan- 
thropic objects in Canada. He is said to have given to M'Gill University 
about 1,600,000 dollars in all. 

The Royal Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, has awarded its Linnaeus medal 
to Mr. J. Stadling, in recognition of his journey through Siberia and a gift of 
fish from that country. 

On occasion of the Jubilee of the St. Petersburg Academy of Medicine, the 
following British scientists have been appointed honorary members of the 
Academy : Sir William MacCormac, Sir William Turner, Lord Bayleigh, Sir 
William Stokes, Drs. William Macewen, Thompson, and Branston. 

The Council of the Royal Institute of Public Health has awarded the 
Harben Gold Medal for 1899 to Lord Lister, P.R.S., in recognition of his 
eminent services to preventive medicine ; and it has appointed Professor 
William R. Smith, M.D., D.Sc, as Harben Lecturer for the year 1899 ; he has 
chosen "Diphtheria" as his subject. 

Sir John Lubbock has been elected a member of the Poyal Society of 
Science at Upsala. 

During the past year the total number of matriculated students attending 
the University of Edinburgh was 2813, including 211 women. Of this number 
817 (including 190 women) were enrolled in the Faculty of Arts, 147 (including 
5 women) in the Faculty of Science, 63 in the Faculty of Divinity, 373 in the 
Faculty of Law, 1387 (including 6 women) in the Faculty of Medicine, and 26 
(including 10 women) in the Faculty of Music. Of the students of medicine, 
584, or over 42 per cent, belonged to Scotland ; 374, or nearly 27 per cent, 
were from England and Wales; 94 from Ireland, 60 from India, 231, or fully 
16|- per cent, from British Colonies; and 44 from foreign countries. 

1899] NEWS 169 

The Regents of the University of the State of New York have decided to 
divide the work in geology and palaeontology, which was for so many years in 
charge of the late Professor James Hall, and in so doing have erected two 
co-ordinate departments, one of palaeontology and stratigraphic geology and 
the other of "pure geology," the latter to cover dynamic and physical geology, 
the crystalline rocks, superficial geology, etc. Some of the changes are noted 
in our list of appointments. 

Science announces that Dr. Thomas Egleston, emeritus professor of miner- 
alogy and metallurgy in Columbia University, has presented the university 
with his library and mineralogical collection, the latter containing about 5000 
valuable specimens. 

We learn from the American Naturalist that the biological and cjeoloaical 
departments of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have moved into new 
and more spacious quarters in the Pierce building recently erected. 

The King of Sweden and Norway has given the Swedish Academy of 
Sciences the sum of about two hundred guineas for continuing the investigation of 
Swedish seas under the direction of Professor Pettersson. During the present 
year it is intended to continue the soundings in the Baltic and Gulf of Bothnia, 
and the continuous observations in the Skagerrak ; also to investigate the con- 
ditions on the northernmost parts of the North Sea plateau, where is the 
fishing-ground of the Swedish bank-fishers, and the conditions during the 
months of October and November, after the close of the herring-fishery. 

The Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium proposes to ask the Belgian 
government to enter into negotiations with foreign governments, with a view 
to drawing up an International Pharmacopoeia. 

The awards of the Geological Society of London for the year 1899 will be 
as follow : — Wollaston Medal, Charles Lapworth ; Wollaston Fund, J. B. 
Harrison, of British Guiana ; Murchison Medal (this year awarded twice), 
Benjamin N. Peach and John Home ; Murchison Fund, James Bennie ; Lyell 
Medal, General C. A. M'Mahon ; Lyell Fund, divided between Frederick 
Chapman and John Ward ; Bigsby Medal, T. W. Edgeworth David, of Sydney. 

The gold medal of the French Geographical Society has been awarded to 
Mr. Gentil for his explorations in the neighbourhood of Lake Tchad. 

The Seventh International Geographical Congress is to meet in Berlin from 
Thursday, September 28, to Wednesday, October 4, of this year. The sub- 
scription for members is £1. All who wish to contribute papers are requested 
to give notice before April 1, and to send their MS. by June 1 ; abstracts, if 
desired, should not exceed 1500 words, and must be sent in before August 1. 
Motions to be laid before the Congress should be sent in not later than June 1. 
The languages admitted at the Congress are English, French, German, and 
Italian. All correspondence is to be addressed to 90 Zimmerstrasse, Berlin, 

The Committee of the International Geological Congress, 1900, which will 
meet at Paris, has just issued, through the Minister of Commerce, Industry, etc., 
the first circular. The Congress will take place from the 16th to the 28th 
August 1900, after which will follow these excursions : — Tertiaries of the Paris 
basin (2 days); the Boulonnais and Normandy (10 days) ; the central massift* 
(10 days); the Ardennes (8 days); Picardy (6 days); Brittany (10 days); 
Mayenne (8 days) ; the turonian of Touraine and the cenomanian of Mans 
(6 days) ; Touraine (4 days) ; Morvan (10 days) ; coal-measures of Commentry 
and of Decazeville (7 days) ; Mont Dore, chaine des Puysand Limagne (10 days) - r 
Bharentes (8 days) ; Bordeaux basin (6 days) ; Tertiaries of the Rhone .and the 
Casse-Alps (8 days) ; Dauphine and Mont Blanc (10 days) ; Hautes Alps (10 to 
12 days); Monts Ventoux and de Lure (10 days); Basse-Provence (10 days); 


le Montagne Noire (8 days) ; Pyrenees (10 days). A special geological guide 
will be ready early in 1900 ; meanwhile English geologists will remember the 
excellent " Geology of the Paris Basin," by Messrs. Harris and Burrows, pub- 
lished by the Geologists' Association of London. 

The new president of the Anthropological Society of Paris is Dr. Capitan. 

The new president of the American Microscopical Society is Dr. William C. 
Krauss, of Buffalo, N.Y. 

The New York Zoological Society has issued No. 3 of its News Bulletin. 
This is illustrated with four large photographic figures, showing the works 
at present in progress. A great deal seems to have been accomplished since 
the summer, and it is hoped to have the Park partially stocked with animals, 
and open to the public, by May next. 

It is announced that those interested in promoting Zoological Gardens in 
Edinburgh have fixed their eyes provisionally on a site in the neighbourhood 
of Barnton. As we pointed out before, the only hope of success, in default of 
abundant capital, is to choose a site in some habitual resort of holidayers, and 
this consideration points to Portobello rather than to Barnton. 

The President of the American Society of Naturalists, at its New York 
meeting in December 1898, delivered an address on "Reform in Medical Edu- 
cation." This is published in Science for December 30. Eleven other scientific 
societies were meeting during the same period. 

The Excursion Secretary of the Geologists' Association, London, is now Mr. 
F. Meeson, 29 Thurloe Place, South Kensington. He is trying to organise 
some cycle excursions. 

The "At Home" of the President and Council of the Geological Society, 
London, on December 15, was attended by a large number of Fellows. With 
the aid of the lantern Mr. H. W. Monckton showed photographs of the glaciers 
and fjords of the Bergen district, Norway, and Mr. C. W. Andrews showed his 
photographs of Christmas Island. There were many interesting exhibits. The 
Director-General of the Survey produced markings from the Silurian rocks of 
Tipperary, simulating shells, graptolites, and fucoids, but probably due to 
inorganic causes. Mr. Whitaker exhibited a geological map of London and 
suburbs made in relief on stamped tin by J. B. Jordan. Mr. Etheridge ex- 
hibited cores from the Brabourne borehole in South-East Kent ; this has now 
reached a depth of 2003 feet in Lower Carboniferous rocks. 

Mr. Monckton redelivered the above-mentioned lecture to the Geologists' 
Association, London, on January 6. 

The Preston Scientific Society held its annual meeting on November 23, 
1898. It was announced that during the year the number of members had 
increased from 520 to 710. This being so, it is the more to be regretted that 
the Corporation should have found itself unable to continue to permit the 
Society the use of its rooms in Cross Street, causing the Society pecuniary loss, 
and the trouble of furnishing new rooms at 119a Pishergate. The collections 
of the Society are growing. Miss Robinson has presented a large collection of 
British Plants ; while a series of local land and fresh-water mollusca has been 
given by Messrs. R. Garbet and W. H. Heathcote. The syllabus of lectures 
and sectional meetings for the current session is remarkably full, but contains 
rather a larger proportion of lectures on general subjects than we like to see in 
the case of an actively working local society. The new president is W. E. M. 
Tomlinson, M.P. ; and the secretary is W. H. Heathcote, 47 Frenchwood Street, 

The retirement of Sir John Evans from the treasurership of the Royal Society, 
after a period of service of twenty years, has seemed a fitting opportunity for 

1899] NEWS 171 

the Fellows of the Society to give expression to their sense of obligation for the 
efficient manner in which he has discharged the arduous duties of his office. 
There is a consensus of opinion that the most suitable form for marking appre- 
ciation would be a portrait painted in oil colours. This would find an appro- 
priate place on the walls of the Society's apartments at Burlington House, where 
Sir John Evans has for many years past spent a considerable proportion of his 
time in carrying on the work of the Society. Subscriptions from Fellows of 
the Society will be received by the assistant secretary. 

At a meeting of the Royal Physical Society of Edinburgh, on January 18, 
the following communications were read : — On the genesis of some Scottish 
minerals, part i., by Mr. J. G. Goodchild ; on the minute structure of the so- 
called " rectal " gland of the skate, by Dr. John Crawford ; and on spiders of 
the Edinburgh district (190 species now recorded), by Mr. W. Evans and Mr. 
G. H. Carpenter. Mr. Crawford contrasted the structure of the "rectal'' 
gland with that of the appendix vermiformis, and noted especially the remark- 
able disposition of the vascular supply. A glycerine extract gave no evidence 
of digestive function. 

At the Royal Victoria Hall, Waterloo Bridge Road, London, the following 
penny science lectures were delivered during January : — Rev. R. H. Whit- 
combe, "Science Jottings in Switzerland"; Mr. R. A. Gregory, "Astronomy 
before Telescopes " ; Prof. Farmer, " Plants as Engineers " ; Mr. C. W. Andrews, 
" Christmas Island " ; Prof. Frank Clowes, " Old Father Thames." 

During the present term Mr. A. G. Tansley is giving a course of about 
thirty-three lectures on the morphology and histology of the vascular system 
of plants at University College, London. Each lecture is followed by two 
hours' practical work. 

The conflagration which recently broke out in the physical laboratory of the 
University of Geneva destroyed Prof. Chodat's botanical collection, together 
with 200 drawings by the professor, which were the result of ten years' labour. 

In an article in the Glasgow Herald of January 7 Dr. Robert Munro refers 
to an article on the marine structure recently discovered in the estuary of the 
Clyde, which appeared in the November number of Natural Science, and in 
which his name is introduced as one who, after • making a thorough investiga- 
tion of the site, "declared it was the most curious, puzzling, and interesting 
find of the kind he had met with in all his long experience, and, so far as he 
knew, unique." From the general purport of that article the public may have 
supposed that the opinions there promulgated as to the age, structure, and 
marvels of the Dumbuck crannog have been endorsed by Dr. Munro. But this 
is not so, as he regards it neither as a pile-structure nor as a monument of Neo- 
lithic times. In attempting to solve the riddle of the remarkable art gallery — 
idols, amulets, and ornaments of shale and shell — there are two alternative con- 
clusions to be formulated. Either these objects are what the investigators 
assert them to be, the genuine relics "of the inhabitants of the fort and crannog, 
or they are not. On the former hypothesis they form the most remarkable 
collection of archaeological remains ever found in Scotland. On the latter, they 
are the productions of some idle practical joker. 

Dr. Munro wishes to state that he has not the slightest clue to the proven- 
ance of the relics whose genuineness he calls in question, as his opinion is based 
entirely on their inherent character and total variance with all other archaeo- 
logical remains known to him. 

Dr. F. P. Moreno, of the La Plata Museum, exhibited at the Zoological 
Society of London, on January 17, a fragment of the skin of the animal 
described by Ameghino as Neomylodon. The piece was about 18 inches across 
either way. Dr. Moreno and Professor Seeley maintained that the fragment was 
probably a portion of a Mylodon which had been preserved under similar con- 


ditions to the Moa skin and feathers of New Zealand. Prof. Seeley compared 
it with the skin of Rhinoceros and Elephas found in the tundras of Siberia, skin 
which he emphatically stated had never been found in frozen soil or in masses 
of ice. With this statement the meeting distinctly disagreed. The general 
opinion of those zoologists present, on the main question, however, was that the 
skin exhibited was not that of a fossil, but of a recent, or comparatively recent, 
animal. The fragments in Ameghino's possession Dr. Moreno believes to be 
from this identical portion of skin, and if that be so, then English zoologists 
will have little doubt in deciding that Ameghino is correct in assigning the dis- 
covery to a new form, named by him Neomylodon. 

Although the Apothecaries' Society has decided to abandon the management 
of the Chelsea Physic Garden, it will not disappear under bricks and mortar. 
The control is to be vested in the Trustees of the London Parochial Charities, 
but it will be managed by a committee of fifteen, including representatives of 
the Royal Society, the Technical Education Board, the Society of Apothecaries 
and the Royal College of Physicians in turn, the Pharmaceutical Society, and 
the Senate of the University of London. The existing garden will be main- 
tained, rooms provided for lectures and experimental teaching, and a physiological 
laboratory may be erected. An income of £800 is to be provided by the 
Trustees, and other sums will be provided to carry out all the details of the 
scheme. Instruction will be provided, material supplied for teaching, and the 
Royal College of Science teachers and students will be allowed the use of the 
garden and rooms. 

We alluded in our last number to Mr. Frederick W. Christian's explorations 
in the Caroline Islands. The Times states that Mr. Christian stayed nearly 
three years in Samoa, studying the language and customs of the people, 
especially those farthest removed from the settlements of the white man. In 
Tahiti and the Marquesas he spent two years, minutely noting down the 
language, the genealogies, folklore, and traditions of the inhabitants. He 
visited single-handed Spanish Micronesia, in order to obtain some further and 
minuter information upon certain mysterious ruins reported to exist upon 
Bonate, or Ponape, and Lele, two islands lying further to the eastward of the 
extensive Caroline chain. Here he obtained some 150 photographs in the 
districts of Kiti, U, Metalanim, Not, and Chokach (wrongly styled Jekoits and 
Jokoits in the present charts). The walled islets of Nan-Matal were explored 
and mapped out fairly accurately. The phonesis of very many native names 
and their spelling were changed from a meaningless jargon to their correct 
native renderings and accompanying significations. He also made excavations 
in the central vault of the sanctuary of Nan-Tanach, bringing to light a con- 
siderable number of curious tools, implements, and shell ornaments of an ancient 
date. Many of the old native legends and fairy tales were rescued from oblivion. 
Some new information was obtained about the flora and marine life of the 
archipelago. The former presence of an early Negrito race, conquered and 
absorbed or overlapped by later waves of Polynesian, Malayan, and Melanesian 
immigrants was fairly established. Also evidence was collected as to the 
obtrusion of many Japanese words upon the Micronesian area. Mr. Christian 
spent three months on Yap, in the Western Carolines, where he found ancient 
platforms and burial-places of Japanese design. He proposes to revisit the 
Caroline and Marianne Islands, especially Ruk, Tinian, Saipan, Pulawat, and 
Nuku-Oro, also the Pelew Islands. 

C. F. Baker, of the Alabama Experiment Station, left on January 1 for a 
collecting trip of a year and a half's duration in South America. 

Prof. Alexander Agassiz is said to have gone to Rhodesia to investigate 
its mineral resources. It is safe to tay that he will not confine his attention 
to these. 

1899] NEWS 173 

The U.S. Fish Commission steamer "Fish Hawk" has gone to Porto Kico 
for the winter. The party it carries will, says Science, make a careful study of 
the various forms of life in the waters about the island, and incidentally the 
fauna and flora of the land will be studied and collections made in various 
branches of natural history. The material will be submitted to specialists, and 
their united papers will form a comprehensive report on the natural history of 
the island. Professor B. W. Evermann is in charge, and he will be assisted on 
the part of the Fish Commission by Mr. H. F. Moore, E. C. Marsh, and others. 
Entomology will be cared for by Mr. August Brusck, of the Department of 
Agriculture, while Mr. A. B. Baker will represent the National Zoological Park. 
Mr. A. H. Baldwin goes as artist. 

Dr. Carl Aurivillius, of Upsala, left Stockholm on January 6 to renew his 
observations in Java, the Sunda Islands, and possibly Timor. He will make 
general zoological collections in this interesting but still little known region, and 
make special studies on the fauna of coral reefs. While on his voyage he will 
conduct researches on the plankton of the Indian Ocean and the sea around the 
Sunda Islands. The expense of this will be paid out of the Lars Hierta 
Memorial Fund ; but the general cost of the expedition will be defrayed by the 
J. A. Wahlberg stipend (awarded for the first time) as well as the larger of the 
State travelling stipends. 

Prof. A. C. Haddon writes to Nature that his expedition has now completed 
its work in Torres Straits. Dr. Rivers and Mr. Wilkin have left for England, 
while the other members of the expedition have proceeded to Borneo to study 
the anthropology of the Baram district of Sarawak. The health of the party 
has been excellent. 

The natives of Murray Island were studied with most detail, as, owing to 
their isolation, they have been less modified by contact with alien races. Some 
of the party stayed about four months on the island, others only a couple of 
months, having made a trip to the mainland of New Guinea, where they visited 
the coast tribes between Kerepunu and the Mekeo district, and took several 
excursions for short distances inland. There was not enough time spent at any 
spot for a thorough investigation of the natives, but a considerable amount of 
information was obtained in most of the branches of anthropology with which 
the expedition is concerned ; and this will prove of value for purposes of 
comparison. Over a month was spent in Mabuiag (Jervis Island) by all the 
party, with the exception of Messrs. Myers and M'Dougall, who had previously 
started for Borneo. Although the time spent in Mabuiag was short, a satis- 
factory amount of work was accomplished, owing to the conditions being 
favourable. Observations were also made on several other islands in Torres 
Straits and in Kiwai, which is situated at the mouth of the Fly River. 

A large number of photographs have been taken, and considerable collections, 
which are now on their way to Cambridge, have been made. 

Dr. C. F. Millspaugh, the botanist, and E. P. Allen, the photographer, of the 
Field Columbian Museum, Chicago," left New York on December 24 for the West 
Indies on Mr. Allison Armour's yacht " Utowana," in order to make as complete 
a collection of the flora as possible. 

In a letter to Aftonbladet, Mr. Stadling of the Andree Search Expedition, 
complains that his telegram from Yeneseisk was transmogrified beyond recogni- 
tion, and gives the following account of his travels : — After 300 miles stormy 
voyage through the delta, they were frozen up on an uninhabited island in the 
sea west of the Lena delta and about 100 miles from the mouth of the Olensk. 
After seventeen days they were able to obtain dog-sledges from the interior and 
to proceed over the sea. Reindeer took them from the mouth of the Olensk 
over 300 miles of uninhabited tundra to Anabar, thence in a north-westerly 
direction near to the mouth of Chatanga Creek, and so southwards to Chatangs- 
koje. Crossing the Taimyr peninsula, they took a more northerly direction 

12 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 84. 


than the usual winter road of the hunters, so as to visit the natives, who were 
still out on the tundra. The route led over the watershed between the rivers 
Chatarya, Taimyr, and Pjasina, to Dudinskoje on the Yenesei, about 1800 miles 
from the Lena delta. Thence reindeer and horses took them 1200 miles to 
Krasorojarsk, where they took the train on December 2. None of the natives 
or wandering Dolgans and Samoyedes had any news of Andree, though a few 
had heard tell of the expedition three years before. 

Another Andree rumour comes through Prof. Xathorst of Stockholm. 
Fourteen days before midsummer, the Norwegian whaler, "Harald Harfager," 
was in the ice between Iceland and Greenland, in 66° 33' N. and 28° W., 
when the crew of one of her boats saw on an ice-floe a large mass like a heap 
of brushwood or a pile of steel rails. Fog and the fear of losing their ship 
prevented a closer examination ; and though the captain, when it was reported 
to him, lay to for several hours and then steered in the direction indicated, the 
mists prevented rediscovery of the curious appearance. It was not till later 
that this object was connected in their minds with Andree's balloon. This, 
however, is a possible explanation, for, supposing the balloon to have met with 
mishap north of Spitzbergen, it would have drifted across to Greenland and 
then down its east coast. 

The well-known traveller, Captain Daniel Brunn, has decided to organise 
an expedition next summer to search for traces of Herr Andree and his com- 
panions in the neighbourhood of Eastern Greenland. The expedition will start 
from the east coast of Iceland and proceed by way of Jan Mayen Island, to 
the vicinity of Cape Barclay on the east Greenland coast. 

The interesting results obtained by the expedition of Mr. J. E. 8. Moore to 
Lake Tanganyika have led to the formation of a committee to organise another 
expedition for the purpose of thoroughly surveying the basin, not only of Lake 
Tanganyika, but also the northern extension of the series of valleys in which 
this lake, along with Lake Kiou and the Albert Nyanza, lie ; of collecting 
specimens of the arpiatic fauna and flora, and of studying the geological history 
of the region. The last-mentioned object is of special interest, considering the 
marine Jurassic character of the gastropods now living in the lake. The 
likelihood of the halolimnic fauna, as Mr. Moore calls it, being found in the 
lakes to the north is increased by the fact that it bears some resemblance to 
the fauna of the Lower Nile. The proposed expedition would go northwards 
from Tanganyika as far as the Albert Edward and Kuwenzori districts, then 
eastwards down the Uganda roads to the sea. The African Lakes Corporation 
is now running a steamer on Tanganyika, and this will permit of dredging and 
sounding. The Committee consists of Sir John Kirk, Dr. P. L. Sclater, Sir 
William Thiselton Dyer, Prof. Bay Lankester, and Mr. G. A. Boulenger. It 
estimates that at least £5000 will be required, and appeals for pecuniary 

A telegram from Sydney has been received at the Boyal Society, stating 
that the boring into the coral reef, or rather atoll, of Funafuti had been dis- 
continued on reaching a depth of 1114 feet. Cores had been obtained, and the 
material traversed is described as " coral i"eef " rock. By comparison of this 
information with that previously received it would appear that the lower part 
of the mass pierced consists of a hard limestone, apparently reef material, a 
rather sudden change from softer and more variable stuff — a mixture of sand 
composed of calcareous organisms with reef coral — taking place at a depth just 
short of 600 feet. 

Another attack on Polypterus in the Nile valley is to be made this year by 
Prof. E. B. Wilson of Columbia University. 

Lord Lister and Sir Henry Boscoe announce that Lord Iveagh has offered' 
the sum of £250,000 for the purposes of the highest research in bacteriology 

1899] NEWS 175 

and other forms of biology as bearing upon the causes, nature, prevention, and 
treatment of disease. He has proposed to the Council of the Jenner Institute 
(lately the British Institute) of Preventive Medicine, that the donation shall be 
handed over to the Institute on condition that in future the control and 
management of the affairs of the Institute shall be placed in the hands of a 
new Board of seven trustees, three of the seven to be chosen by the Council of 
the Institute, three by the donor, and one by the Council of the Royal Society. 
The offer has been cordially accepted at a meeting of the Council. 

The donor further proposes that part of the new fund shall be appropriated 
to the enlargement of the buildings of the Institute at Chelsea, part to increas- 
ing the at present sadly inadequate salaries of the director and other members 
of the scientific staff, part to the expenses of administration and maintenance, 
and the remainder chiefly to founding valuable fellowships and studentships, 
tenable for limited periods, for research either in the laboratories of the 
Institute or in the centres of outbreaks of disease, whether at home or abroad. 

The executors of the late M. Dobree of Nantes, the shipbuilder, who left a 
fortune of 13,000,000 francs, have, in accordance with his wishes, bought a 
large mansion, with a park of 37 acres, and presented it to the town of Nantes 
for the foundation of a School of Colonial Horticulture, to endow which a sum 
of one and a quarter million francs is also bequeathed. 

The official organ of the Prussian Ministry of the Interior gives some 
account of the work accomplished, since its constitution three years ago, by the 
German Central Committee for the establishment of sanatoria for consumptives 
under the patronage of the German Empress and the presidency of the Imperial 
Chancellor, Prince Hohenlohe. The great object of the Central Committee was 
to establish a sufficient number of sanatoria throughout the German Empire, 
and in this they have met with much encouragement and success. 

The Rev. G. Procter, a retired schoolmaster, has bequeathed £3000 to the 
University of Aberdeen as a contribution to the erection of an observatory at 
King's College. 

We learn from Science that the Bussey Institute, Harvard University, has 
received from Mr. E. D. Morgan §5000 for the equipment of a pathological 
laboratory, of which Professor Theobold Smith is the director ; also that a new 
greenhouse, costing $7000, has been given anonymously to the Botanical 
Garden of the University. 

We learn from Science that the late Mann S. Valentine bequeathed to the 
town of Richmond, Virginia, his collections of books, MSS., paintings, and 
anthropological specimens, with his own house to serve as museum-building. 
This is to be associated with the educational institutions of the State, to 
publish literary and scientific papers, and to preserve objects of antiquity. 

The Thakoor of Gondal, lately a medical student at Edinburgh University, 
has spent £30,000 on a college " of the type of Eton," which Lord Sandhurst 
opened the other day. 

The Free Library, Museum, and Technical School of Bootle have started a 
Journal for the use of their visitors. It will serve, in the first instance, as a 
quarterly supplement to the library catalogues, and should do much to help 
readers to a right use of the library. We learn from it that the re-arrangement 
of the birds in the museum, under geographical regions, is now nearly finished, 
as also is the labelling with popular names. There will also be an arrangement 
of birds in families, according to Claus's "Text-book of Zoology." The 
arrangement is described in a threepenny handbook. In connection with this 
a course of six lectures on birds is being given to school teachers. In the 
same room as the birds are exhibited the invertebrates. 

The University of Pennsylvania has determined to establish an experi- 
mental menagerie under the direction of Professor Edward J. Conkling, where 

176 NEWS [FEB. 1899 

the animals will be permitted to live under the most natural conditions. 
Experiments will be made to discover how animals communicate with one 
another, whether they reason, whether domestic animals have increased powers 
of expression, whether animals, as a class, dream, and so on. Much attention 
is to be given to the night-flying animals and birds, of which so little is 

The Lancet reports the appearance of a veritable giant in the subalpine 
town of Cuneo, who is a phenomenon deserving of more than vulgar curiosity. 
This overgrown individual is a native of the Piedmontese hamlet of Vinadio, 
where he was born twenty-two years ago. His altitude is (in metres) 2*25, his 
thoracic circumference is 1 "60, and his feet are 45 centimetres long. 

" The Kesources of the Sea ; or, An Inquiry into the Experiments on 
Trawling and the Closure of Areas," is the title of a work by Prof. Mcintosh 
(C. J. Clay and Sons, Cambridge University Press Warehouse), to be issued 
shortly. The work gives the results of many years' experience in the depart- 
ment — from Lord Dalhousie's Commission (1883-85) onwards. It commences 
with a general sketch of the resources of the sea in the various groups, then 
reviews the Trawling Report of 1884, the present condition of the fishing- 
grounds and the fisheries, and comments on the changes which have since 
occurred in vessels and their equipment. The mode in which the trawling 
experiments have been carried out by the Scotch Fishery Board is then dealt 
with in connection with the closed areas, and as the author suggested these 
closures for experiment, his criticisms have some interest. The whole series of 
the experiments in St. Andrews Bay, the Forth, the Moray Frith, and the 
Clyde are minutely reviewed and criticised, and, finally, conclusions are drawn 
in accordance with the facts. These conclusions are adverse to the closure, and 
show that the influence of man in regard to the destruction of any marine food- 
fish on an open seaboard is comparatively insignificant. The work is accom- 
panied by thirty-two tables and various photographs and figures. 

Natural Science 

A Monthly Review of Scientific Progress 

March 1899 


Endowment of Research. 

It has been held by many that the scanty endowment of research 
in Great Britain is the main reason why we fail to produce so large 
and useful an output of original work as emanates from some other 
countries. In a few years' time we shall have an opportunity of 
estimating the justice of this contention in the case of at least one 
branch of experimental science. Lord Iveagh's princely gift of a 
quarter of a million sterling to the Jenner Institute of Preventive 
Medicine should afford a crucial test of what endowment, on a truly 
munificent scale, can effect. Most of the workers in Preventive 
Medicine have been, and are, men engaged in professional occupations, 
and unable to devote themselves exclusively to research. With the 
funds now at the command of the Jenner Institute, there should be 
little difficulty in furnishing a capable band of workers with incomes 
sufficient to free them from the restrictions imposed by ordinary prac- 
tice. Preventive medicine is a young and rapidly growing branch of 
science, and there is no subject in which greater advances may be 
anticipated in the near future. The results which should be brought 
about by a wise use of Lord Iveagh's gift ought to place the Jenner 
Institute at least on the scientific level of the Institut Pasteur, and the 
value of the work done should form so convincing an argument in 
favour of the endowment of research that other wealthy men would be 
tempted to follow his generous and public-spirited example. Every- 
thing depends on how the money is spent. The Council of the Jenner 
Institute includes a number of very eminent scientific men whose 
very names seem to afford a guarantee that its new-found wealth will be 
wisely and rightly applied. Hitherto the Institute has not been too 
amply provided with funds, and it has added to its income by a system 
of lectures and classes in Public Health and Bacteriology similar to 
those carried on at most of the larger medical schools in London, and 
for which approximately similar fees were charged. It would appear 
to us a very unfair thing that any of Lord Iveagh's money should be 
employed in subsidising this branch of the work of the Jenner Institute 
to the detriment of existing teaching bodies. We have before us the 

13 — -NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. Nt>. 85. 1]] 


Syllabus of the Institute for 1899, printed, doubtless, in ignorance of 
the financial prosperity that lay before it. We have also before us the 
scale of charges of the Investigation Department, framed on lines some- 
what similar to those of the Clinical Eesearch Association. It will 
clearly henceforth be beneath the dignity of an institution with an 
endowment of £250,000, to test the sputum for tubercle bacilli for a 
remuneration of five shillings, or even to offer a complete chemical and 
bacteriological report on a sample of water for a similar number of 
guineas. This may be left to those who have to work for their liveli- 
hood. The Jenner Institute has now before it a magnificent and 
unique opportunity for showing what can be accomplished in scientific 
results where " money is not so much an object as a comfortable 

Economic Entomology. 

" The Eeport of the Proceedings of the Tenth Annual Meeting of the 
Association of Economic Entomologists" (1898) contains contributions 
under the names of many well-known American entomologists. 

Two different entomologists write on the San Jose, or Pernicious 
Scale, an insect which certainly beats the record for literature on a 
single form, for legislation directed against the pest, and for money 
spent in combating its ravages. 

In the experiments directed against the San Jose Scale, the feature 
of the year, as mentioned in the report before us, has been the use of 
pure paraffin with effective result against the Scale, and often no conse- 
quent, or at least permanent, harm to the tree. While most of the 
experimenters reported favourably, one or two cases were brought 
forward where sprayed plants were killed, and, so far as experiment has 
gone, the position may be summed up thus: — (1) Pure kerosene must 
always be used with great care ; (2) it should not be used against young 
plants or tender fruit-trees; (3) hardier fruit-trees may be sprayed 
with pure kerosene, but the trees must not be drenched ; the spraying- 
should be carried out while the trees are in a dormant state ; the 
day chosen for the spraying should be a bright one, with weather 
conditions favouring evaporation ; (4) in case of recommendation to 
spray with pure kerosene, " the individual fruit-grower should be 
advised to experiment in a small way, and so determine for himself 
in his own locality, and under the local conditions that exist, whether 
he can use kerosene to advantage." 

The caterpillars of the gipsy-moth (Porthetria dispar), as told in 
the report, continue their work of defoliation in the State of Massa- 
chusetts. Less than thirty years ago a few moths of this species, 
introduced into America by a naturalist for indoor experiment, acci- 
dentally escaped. In twelve years' time the descendants of these were 


numerous enough to cause a plague. The continued spread and 
destruction caused by the pest attracted the attention of the State 
Legislature in 1890, which voted 25,000 dollars for exterminative 
work. This work continues to be prosecuted diligently, and with the 
last year's grant of 200,000 dollars and expected aid for the next year 
or two, the Commission appointed hope to exterminate the pest. 

This moth has a bad reputation on the Continent for damage to 
forests, but in England it is said to be rapidly disappearing, being no 
longer found in localities where some time ago there was no difficulty 
in procuring specimens. 

Mosquitoes and how to get rid of them forms the subject of another 
article in the report. Some time ago a paragraph went the round of 
the newspapers stating, among other things, that permanganate of 
potash in very dilute solution was fatal to mosquitoes in all stages 
of their life. One part of permanganate in 1500 of solution was said 
to render the development of the larvae impossible, while a handful 
thrown into a ten-acre swamp was said to be sufficient to kill the 
larvae and keep the swamp clear of mosquitoes for a month, and all 
this at a cost of only twenty-five cents. Although other statements in 
the paragraph suggested the unreliability and worthlessness of the 
whole, Dr. Howard, of the Entomological Department in the United 
States, who was investigating the mosquito problem at the time, made 
some experiments with permanganate of potash of various strengths, 
and found that small amounts had no effect whatever against the pest. 
As a matter of fact, a waggon-load of permanganate would be required 
to kill in a ten-acre swamp, and as the water at the end of twenty- 
four hours is in a condition fit to support mosquito life again, the 
treatment would require to be repeated every two days. Experiments 
continue to be made under Dr. Howard's direction, paraffin being 
allowed to cover the surface of the water in marshy places during the 
mosquito breeding-season. The botanist, however, has complained on 
the score that the oil was very destructive to water plants. 

An interesting little sermon, entitled " Entomological Ethics," was 
preached by Mr. T. D. A. Cockerell, who, among other matters, dis- 
coursed on the question of private ownership and State property in 
connection with the materials sent for examination to the various 
State departments, from the text of St. Paul to the Eomans, " What 
then ? Shall we sin because we are not under law, but under grace ? 
God forbid ! " 

Great Auks in Ireland. 

The Irish Naturalist for January contains two short papers on the 
occurrence of the Great Auk in the North and South of Ireland, by 
Messrs. E. J. Ussher and W. J. Knowles. 


Mr. Ussher's hunting-grounds were the kitchen-middens of the 
South of Ireland, previously visited by him. The bones which he 
discovered on this occasion represented portions of the pectoral and 
pelvic limbs, and a fragment of a left innominate bone. These were 
found associated with the remains of " domestic animals and fowls (sic) 
. . . Eed-deer, . . . burned stones, and charcoal in layers, and great 
quantities of shells of edible species (sic)." The latter half of the 
paper contains some extracts from a very sensational article by Lady 
Blake which appeared in the Victoria Quarterly for August 1889. 
The genuineness of these stories, though no doubt published by Lady 
Blake in all good faith, is seriously open to question. So far, there 
seems to be not a tittle of evidence in support of any of the state- 
ments therein set down. 

Mr. Knowles's finds were made in the North of Ireland — White- 
park Bay. These represent portions of the fore and hind limbs and 
of the pectoral girdle. " The first remains of Great Auk " from 
Whitepark Bay were, he tells us, " obtained during a careful excava- 
tion of a portion of the black layer," — information of questionable 
value, inasmuch as he omits to inform us to what period the " black 
layer " belongs. Just as, in an earlier part of his paper, he tells us 
that " There were also associated with these remains Hint flakes, cores, 
hammer-stones, and flint scrapers, together with edible molluscs " (sic). 

We are curious to know the nature of the " physiological pre- 
parations " of the Great Auk, referred to in Mr. Knowles's paper. 
These two papers are illustrated by some rough and somewhat 
inaccurate sketches, signed by " M. Knowles." 

About Yeast. 

Moke than a year ago we were startled by the announcement of the 
discovery, by Dr. Buclmer, that the alcoholic fermentation set up by 
the yeast-plant was due to an enzyme or ferment which he had suc- 
ceeded in extracting from it. This meant that a long-cherished belief 
that the action of yeast could not be disassociated from the living- 
plant must be given up, and the process of fermentation be regarded 
as simply one of a long series of ferment-actions comparable with that 
of diastase on starch or pepsin on proteid. However, we were re- 
assured by Prof. Beynolds Green, who, in a paper published in the 
Annals of Botany at the end of 1897, stated that he had been unable 
to extract an alcohol-producing enzyme from yeast. But, alas ! for our 
equanimity ! The latest number of the same journal (vol. xii. p. 491) 
contains another paper by Prof. Green, who has repeated his experi- 
ments with special precautions, and is now driven to the conclusion 
that actively-fermenting yeast-cells do secrete an alcohol-producing 

1899] ABOUT YEAST 1S1 

enzyme which can be extracted by appropriate means, and will set up 
fermentation in sugar-solutions under conditions which preclude any 
activity of living plant-cells. The process was a perfectly normal one, 
accompanied by the diminution of the sugar, the production of carbonic 
acid gas, and the formation of alcohol. The enzyme is easily decom- 
posed, and therefore rapid manipulation during the process of extrac- 
tion is necessary. The secretion is shown to be intermittent, occurring 
only during actual fermentation, and as the enzyme is soon decomposed 
when the activity ceases, it is not found in the resting state of the 
plant. Owing to these peculiarities Prof. Green failed to extract any 
of the ferment in his former experiments. Dr. Buchner obtained the 
enzyme by subjecting the yeast to high pressures applied by an 
hydraulic press, but Prof. Green finds one of five atmospheres quite 

In the same number of the Annals Mr. Wager supplies an inter- 
esting addition to our knowledge of the cytology of the yeast-plant. 
The presence or absence of a nucleus has been matter of considerable 
dispute. While such a structure has been described by many ob- 
servers, others have declared the so-called nucleus to be merely a mass 
of proteid or a vacuole. Mr. Wager has made several contributions to 
the literature of the subject, speaking for the nucleus, but the one just 
published seems to put the matter beyond doubt. He describes — and 
his paper is accompanied by a large series of excellent figures — a 
structure which he states is invariably present in the cells, and which 
is a perfectly homogeneous body resembling a nucleolus rather than 
the nucleus of the ordinary plant- cell. In the earlier stages of 
fermentation this nucleolus is in close contact with a vacuole which 
contains a granular chromatin-network, and shows a structure in many 
cases like the chromatin-network of the nuclei of higher plants. In 
the later stages of fermentation the chromatin-vacuole may disappear, 
its place being taken by a granular network or a number of chromatin - 
granules which may be disseminated through the protoplasm or grouped 
around the nucleolus. Numerous vacuoles are often found in young 
cells; these apparently fuse to form the single vacuole already de- 
scribed. In the process of budding, the division of the nuclear 
apparatus does not show any definite stages of karyokinesis, but is to 
be regarded as a direct division of the nucleolus into two equal or 
nearly equal parts, accompanied by division of the chromatin-vacuole 
or network. In spore formation the chromatin disseminated through 
the protoplasm becomes more or less completely absorbed into the 
nucleolus which then divides. 

One feature of Mr. Wager's work is the cutting of microtome 
sections of yeast-cells after imbedding and hardening in paraffin. The 
absence of karyokinetic stages in the division of the nuclear apparatus 
will perhaps still leave room for doubt in the minds of some cyto- 
logists as to the true nuclear character of the structures described. 


Systematic Position of Phoronidea. 

Pkofessor L. Eoule has published a short paper (Comptes rendus ac. 
sci., Paris, Oct. 1898) upon the above subject. He has followed the 
development of Phoronis sdbatieri, and lias been led to suggest one 
more possible origin for the Vertebrata. 

He accepts Mr. Masterman's conclusions with regard to the systematic 
position of Phoronis, in that he considers its nearest affinities to be with 
the so-called " Bryozoa Pterobranches " (or in other words, Gephalo- 
cliscus and Bhabdopleura) and holds that the Chordata may be directly 
traced through Adinotrocha. He is led to this mainly by accepting 
the homology of Masterman's so-called " notochords " with the simi- 
larly-named organ in the Chordata, confirming this author's description of 
their origin and histological structure. 

On the other hand, he finds in P. sdbatieri, that the " notochord " 
is unpaired and ventral, instead of paired and lateral. In the species 
investigated by Masterman the pleurochords are strictly lateral, though 
the fact that the " oesophagus " enters the pharynx at its antero-dorsal 
corner gives them a position apparently ventral to the pharynx. Dr. 
Eoule does not furnish any figures, so that one cannot say whether this 
fact has any bearing upon his conclusions, and in any case the unpaired 
condition is a remarkable difference in so closely allied a species. 

Still more remarkable is the conclusion to which the author is led 
by these facts. Adinotrocha has a ventral notochord, the vertebrate has 
a dorsal one ; what more natural than to turn the former upside 
down ? 

Professor Eoule reverts to the idea that Adinotrocha is a trocho- 
phore (in spite of its five coelomic cavities described by Masterman 
to which he makes no allusion), and hence he speaks of the 
"notocorde de ces Trochophores," and the old conclusion is eventu- 
ally reached that " le Vertebre est un Annelide retourne," The author 
must not, however, be understood to revert to anything so common- 
place as the now well-known morphological somersault of the annelid 
aspiring to Chordate structure. The Adinotrocha, already inverted in 
the pursuit of progress, turns itself horizontally through 180°. Its 
mouth then becomes the vertebrate neurenteric caual, and its anal 
extremity becomes moulded into the head of the Vertebrate. Truly 
there is a divinity that shapes our ends, invert them how we may ! 
Professor Eoule's theory of vertebrate origin will doubtless compare 
favourably with the various speculations centering round the king- 
crabs, spiders, leeches, and worms from which we are invited to trace 
our lineage. 


Prickly-Pears on the War-Path. 

The remarkable productiveness exhibited by certain organisms when 
artificially introduced into new territory outside the area of their 
distribution, and where they are freed from those natural checks, under 
the restraining influence of which their protective armour and weapons 
of offence have gradually arisen, illustrates in a remarkable manner the 
intensity of the struggle for existence, and is therefore of perennial 
interest to others besides those directly affected by it. 

It is perhaps not to be wondered at that such species are usually if 
not always objectionable, and it falls to our lot to call attention to one 
more instance of the harmful nature of such invasions. In a 
" Preliminary Study of the Prickly-Pears naturalised in New South 
Wales," Mr. J. H. Maidan, the Director of the Sydney Botanic 
Garden, supplies us with detailed descriptions, accompanied by 
numerous photograms of some six or seven species of Opuntia, which, 
originally introduced into the colony in 1789 in connection with the 
cochineal industry, have escaped from cultivation, and already cover 
large areas of fertile land with impenetrable entanglements of thorn. 
The Colonial Government has been compelled to interfere with an Act 
for the eradication of the pest, but the expulsion of species which are 
only amenable to the arguments of fire or poison, and possess a hydra- 
like vitality, in that every minute fragment gives rise to a new indivi- 
dual, promises to be a task of no small difficulty. It is a relief to know 
that the Opuntias have some redeeming characters, for every one who 
knows the plants will agree with Mr. Maidan in recognising their 
desirability from a horticultural point of view. Some species bear 
edible fruits ; others may be employed to form cattle-proof fences, and 
certain thornless varieties may even be used as fodder plants. 

'' Terminologic Transgressions. 


" What's in a name " ? is no doubt a question which has been repeated 
by many since the day of which we first have record. It is not the 
members of the Rosaceae alone which have been supposed to smell as 
sweet by another name. If there be among our readers any who thus 
dally carelessly with the sacred instrument of thought, let them now be 
warned, for a day of reckoning is at hand, and their sins shall surely 
find them out. Let them be warned, we say, for the Chairman of the 
" Committee on Neuronymy of the American Neurological Association" 
is abroad, and who shall stay his hand ? Hidden under the modest 
title of " Some Neural Terms " within the covers of " Biological 
Lectures delivered at Wood's Holl Laboratory during 1896-97," we 
have from the pen of Professor Burt G. Wilder a sweeping indictment 


of modern anatomists. Huxley, who is known to his fellow-country- 
men for some other achievements, is here immortalised as guilty alike 
of " Direct Pecilonymy " and of " Pecilonymy by Permutation." 
Others, whose names are as yet concealed, are guilty of " Perissology," 
of " Magnilogy, which is the same as Anatomic Esotery," of the use of 
" Polychrestic terms," of indifference to the " Paronymic advantages of 
Mononyms " ; nay, worst of all, of " attempting to check terminologic 
progress by ridicule." Prom which and all other " verbifactive sins " 
may we and our readers be delivered ! But to those who, blinded by 
ignorance, refuse to accept forthwith Mr. Wilder's nomenclature, one 
other argument may be addressed. Be it known, that it is they and 
they alone who prevent the coming of that millennium when " every 
child of ten .shall have a somewhat extended personal acquaintance with 
the gross anatomy of the mammalian brain." Those whom this argu- 
ment fails to convince are beyond hope. 

Into the details of Professor "Wilder's nomenclature we cannot 
enter here ; no doubt we have said enough to induce our readers to 
seek it at the fountain-head, but one point we cannot pass unnoticed. 
It is proposed to avoid the use of proper names in terminology, save 
where these are recommended by their peculiar euphony. Of such 
" euphonious " names " Johnny M'Whorter " is given as an example. 
Deep as is our sympathy with the author's aims, we cannot but feel 
that there is something invidious in this mention of a single example. 
Those of us who have a standard of euphony which is different, will 
find some difficulty in deciding exactly what proper names are legiti- 
mate ; in determining whether it is the affectionate modification of the 
first name, the prefix of the second, or the fine full sound of its 
penultimate syllable, which to the Professor's ear imparts the special 
charm to the example. A list of suitable names would, we think, be a 
valuable addition to the next paper. 

Early Life on Earth. 

Captain F. W. Hutton's presidential address to the Geological Section 
of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science has at 
last reached this country in its printed form. It deals with " Early 
Life on Earth," and gives a short account of the oldest known fossils. 
Eozoon is rejected from the organic world, while the limestone and 
graphitic beds of the Grenville series of Canada do not appeal to 
Captain Hutton as evidence for contemporary life ; they may, he 
thinks, have been clue to the decomposition of calcium carbides by hot 
water. The radiolarian and sponge spicules found by C. Barrois and 
L. Cayeux in the Archaean rocks of Brittany are regarded as the 
earliest undoubted traces of life, but necessarily indicate the existence 
of organised protoplasm at a far earlier period. 


There is not much professedly original in the address ; but when 
most people are trying to overcome difficulties by postulating a more 
rapid rate of variation in the early stages of organic life on earth, it is 
interesting to find Captain Hutton believing in a slower rate of variation 
at that period. He bases this Antipodean view on the great thickness 
of Archaean and early Palaeozoic rocks, and considers that the repre- 
sentation of all the sub-kingdoms of animals in fossils of Cambrian, or 
at all events of Ordovician age does not imply so great an amount of 
evolution as do the subsequent developments. " It was this slow rate 
of variation in ancient times that enabled the early Palaeozoic genera 
to spread so much more widely over the earth than do the genera of 
the present day." It must not, however, be forgotten that some would 
ascribe the great relative thickness of early sediments to greater 
intensity of denudation on an earth unprotected by vegetation. 

The Passing of the Vanquished. 

The extinction of whole groups of animals, as of the graptolites in the 
Carboniferous period, and the trilobites in the Permian, has always 
been a puzzle to naturalists, and on this Captain Hutton has some 
suggestive remarks. The existence in early times of Eadiolaria, almost 
identical in structure with their descendants of the present day, 
suggests to him, in opposition to the views of H. S. Williams, " that 
there is no inherent necessity for organisms to vary or decay, while the 
idea that if they vary then they must subsequently decay is opposed to 
the whole teaching of organic evolution, for it is the variable groups 
which have progressed." The extinction of a whole group must there- 
fore be due to external agencies, and if the group was widely spread, 
these cannot have been local in their operation. 

Change of climate may, perhaps, sometimes account for the exter- 
mination of a group of terrestrial animals or plants, but it cannot 
greatly have affected those living in the sea. " The struggle for exist- 
ence with other animals has, no doubt, generally been the most effi- 
cient cause of extinction, and with pelagic animals it is probably the only 
cause." The graptolites can hardly have succumbed to want of food, 
but probably served as food for others. Those others may have been 
medusae or pelagic cephalopods. Captain Hutton favours the latter, 
but admits that we know very little about them. The trilobites, on 
the other hand, were, he thinks, preyed upon by the ground cephalopods, 
which increased in numbers as the trilobites decreased. In vain the 
latter acquired the power of rolling up into a ball : " the ruthless 
intruders turned them over and tore out their insides." 

We have unrolled Captain Hutton's pamphlet, turned it over and 
torn out its inside for our readers. But we hope that the gallant 
author will not become extinct just yet. 


The Functions of Marine Stations. 

What are the functions of a local Marine Station ? The question is 
suggested by the perusal of the " Twelfth Annual Eeport of the 
Liverpool Marine Biology Committee," which has just reached us. It 
contains not only a general account of the work of the Port Erin 
Station during the past year, but a stirring address by Prof. Herdman 
on some proposed extensions of its work. Some twelve years ago 
the Liverpool Committee began the investigation of the marine life of 
the bay ; since that time their sphere of operations has gradually 
extended, as the members have plunged more and more deeply into 
the work, and now we have an eloqueut protest from Prof. Herdman 
against artificial geographical limitations, and an appeal for means to 
carry on work on a more elaborate scale. The problems of distribu- 
tion, which in their local aspect were one of the prime objects of the 
Committee's investigation, prove to be insoluble unless attacked on a 
large scale. The migration of food-fishes, again primarily a local 
question, is intimately bound up with the plankton-bearing currents of 
the open seas, and it is in these open seas, and not merely in local 
waters, that investigation must be carried on. So it is with the other 
problems which have forced themselves on the notice of the workers 
at the station. Prof. Herdman therefore appeals, in the first place, for 
a British Prince of Monaco, whose yacht may enable the Committee to 
carry out an extensive series of observations in the open sea, and also 
for funds to improve the station, and carry out adequately the publica- 
tion of a series of memoirs on common marine animals — another 
scheme at present in contemplation. We sincerely trust that this 
appeal to the merchant princes of Liverpool will not be in vain, and 
that they will hasten to wipe away the reproach of their apathy as 
contrasted with the liberality with which wealthy Americans so often 
endow science. We cannot, indeed, but regard it as remarkable that a 
wealthy city like Liverpool, with all its traditions as a seaport, should 
be unable to offer its Marine Station more than the very small sum at 
present at its disposal. If successful and persevering work with small 
means deserves encouragement, it certainly should not be lacking to 
the Port Erin Station. We wish Prof. Herdman and his colleagues all 
success in the carrying out of their enlarged conception of local 

Salt-developed Succulence 

Halophytes we have always with us, and also the problem of the 
causes underlying the succulent xerophytic structure so characteristic 
of this group of almost aquatic plants. The opinion usually held has 
been to the effect that the saline character of the water rendered its 


absorption by the plant a matter of considerable difficulty, that in 
short the conditions of life might be described in the well-known 
words " water, water, everywhere, but not a drop to drink." 

Schimper's experiments (" Indo-malayische Strandflora ") suggested 
that salt exercises a poisonous influence on plant life, and he concluded 
that structural adaptations directed towards the reduction of transpira- 
tion were brought about by the necessity of keeping the relative amount 
of salt in the cell sap below a certain point, which varies with the 

Stahl {Bot. Zcit. 1894) pointed out from observations on artificial 
cultures that the stomata of Halophytes are completely paralysed, the 
apertures remaining permanently open, thus compelling the plant to 
take refuge in other structural modifications in order to limit the 
transpiration current ; hence the succulence. 

Professor Diels (Pringsheim's Jahrb. f. Wiss. Bot. xxxii. 1898) 
lias been unable to discover in plants growing under natural conditions 
any stomatic paralysis such as that described by Stahl, and he also 
differs from Schimper in holding that the concentration of sodium 
chloride is kept below the danger point, not by limitation of transpira- 
tion, but by a chemical decomposition of the salt which at the specific 
limit of concentration balances the absorption. The process of respira- 
tion in succulents differs from that in other plants in that oxidation 
does not proceed quite so far, but stops at malic acid or some isomer 
with which the cell sap becomes saturated, while only small quantities 
of carbonic acid are evolved. 

Professor Diels employs this inherent acidity of temper, only 
obtainable by the development of succulence, in decomposing the 
excess of sodium chloride, with the result that the plant is enabled to 
exist unharmed in the bitter waters of its Marah. The chemical 
process by which the decomposition of the salt is effected is not as yet 
known, but the author assumes that the malic acid combines with the 
sodium to form a salt which is of further use in the plant economy, 
while the hydrochloric acid is excreted by the roots. 


Since Treub first called attention to the chalazogamy of Casuarines 
(Ann. Jard. Bot. Buitcnzorg, 1891) many examples of the non- 
micropylar growth of the pollen tube have been recorded, and the 
theory of the evolution of normal porogamic dicotyledons from the 
chalazogamic type has been steadily upheld by several botanists, 
among whom perhaps the best known is Professor Nawaschin. 

In his most recent paper (" Ueber das Verhalten des Pollen- 
schlauches bei der Ulme," Bull. Acad. Sci. St. Pctcrsbourg, 1898) 


Professor Nawaschin points out that the condition in the elm is 
transitional between the lower chalazoganiic and the assumedly higher 
porogamic types. 

The ovary of Ulmus, in common with that of the typically 
chalazoganiic forms, is devoid of the conducting tissue so characteristic 
of those cases in which the nutrition of the pollen tube requires to be 
provided for in its passage across the ovarian cavity. 

The ovule is of the pendulous inverted type, and in the great 
majority of cases the pollen tube reaches it by growing down through 
the tissue of the funicle not far from the surface till nearly opposite 
the middle of the ovule when it strikes across through the integu- 
ments, the outer of which is but slightly developed, to the apex of the 
nucellus, thus avoiding alike micropyle and chalaza. In rare cases 
the tube grows quite close to the surface of the funicle, in fact 
among the epidermal cells, and even exhibits a tendency to project 
into the surrounding cavity. These the author cites as indications of 
a reaching out toward a higher porogamic life. On the other hand, 
the tube sometimes enters the deeper tissues of the funicle and grows 
directly towards the chalaza, where however it is stopped by a patch 
of apparently cuticularised tissue. Here Professor Nawaschin sees a 
reversion toward the ancestral chalazogamic condition typically repre- 
sented in Casuarineae, Betulineae, and Jugiandeae. The extent to 
which differences of this kind are to be treated as supplying a basis 
for classification is at least a question open to discussion. 

A Theory of Colour Vision. 

Believing that the problem of colour vision is " primarily a mechanical 
one," Dr. W. Patten, writing in the American Naturalist for November 
1898, has given us a first instalment of an attempt to unravel the 
mechanism. His brief notice of the Young-Helmholtz theory is 
introduced by the words, " In Sir Isaac Newton's time there were 
supposed to be three sets of fibres in the retina ! " Dr. Patten's 
mechanical theory is based upon his claim to have found in the rods 
of certain eyes — though not in those of the vertebrates — fine nerve 
fibrils which traverse the rod always at right angles to the direction of 
the light. As the light travels through the rods these fibrils are 
stimulated in some way by the ether waves. In cones these fibrils 
would naturally present regular diminishing scales, the longest at the 
base, and the shortest at the tip ; the longest might, according to Dr. 
Patten, be stimulated by the longer red waves, the shortest by the 
violet waves. This is practically the whole theory, which rests upon 
the gradual variation in the length of the transverse fibrils if they 
could be shown to exist in cones. Passing over this stumbling-block, 


that these necessary fibrils have never been discovered in human eyes 
which we know for certain have a scale of colour sensation, we would 
remind Dr. Patten that the little evidence which we have — however 
unsatisfactory we admit it to be — points rather to the tips of the rods 
or cones as being sensitive to red, and the bases to the violet, which is 
the reverse of what his theory demands. Nor again do we admit that 
" every one knows " that the nerve fibres are discontinuous, as taught 
among others by Eamon y Cajal. It is true that this doctrine has 
been very hastily accepted, but signs of reaction are not wanting. 

One curious part of Dr. Patten's theory is that the optic ganglion, 
having in some animals (e.g. Acilius) a slight resemblance in shape to 
the retina, and its " Punct-substanz," and being composed of similar fine 
"vibrating" fibrils, forms with the retina an apparatus suggestive of 
" a Marconi transmitter and receiver " '. 


Under the title " Zweckmilssigkeit und Anpassung," Dr. J. W. Spengel 
has published, with Gustav Fischer of Jena, a recent academical address. 
In popular language adapted to a mixed audience, he here discusses 
one of the vexed problems of evolution. Finding plants and animals 
fitting perfectly into and reacting with their surroundings, like " ready- 
made machines dropped down from heaven," we have, alas ! no certain 
answer to the question " how they came there." AVhile admitting 
that we must use the word " adaptation," it is yet, to the author, 
one of these beautiful words which always pop up " wo Begrifi'e 
fehlen," as Goethe's Mephistopheles points out to encourage students 
of theology. Let us be clear then what we mean. Does " Adaptation " 
mean " adapted from without " or " adapting itself from within ? " In 
very limited and quite unimportant matters the word may be admitted 
in both senses. But to show how inadequate these are to explain the 
facts, he gives a list of cases in which he contends neither would 
apply. One such case, for example, is the perfect fitness of the whale 
to its marine life in cold latitudes. In reference then to the essential 
mechanics of evolution the word adaptation does not mean a process 
but a fact. His "Anpassung" is therefore nothing more than his 
" Zweckmiissigkeit," and he looks elsewhere for its explanation. 

The best answer, he concludes, is that given by the " Natural 
Selection " of congenital variations. It may be doubted, however, 
whether Dr. Spengel's arguments against direct modification of 
structure in response to changes in the environment, and the gradual 
inheritance of these modifications, attain that degree of cogency which 
can be called convincing. 


Bibliography of Zoology. 

Dr. H. H. Field, writing in the American Naturalist for December 
1898, states that the work of the Concilium Bibliographicum, hitherto 
carried on with heavy pecuniary loss to himself, has now been made 
safe for the future by a permanent subsidy voted to it by the Swiss 
Confederation, the canton, and the town of Zurich. The office now has 
its own composing-room, where three type-setters and a head typo- 
grapher are at work all day. Hard by it has its own large cylinder 
press, as well as a paper-cutting machine in charge of a special 
machinist. With this staff 100 cards a day can be turned out, and 
this is estimated to be more than double the actual rate of zoological 
publication. A separate staff is employed to sort and check the cards, 
and to distribute them to subscribers. The use of the classificatory 
numbers enables this to be done with an almost automatic precision. 
This system of numbers is a purely practical device for enabling the 
cards to be sorted at once into their assigned places by any one that 
can read Arabic numerals. For purposes of subscription almost any 
conceivable topic may be ordered, no matter how restricted it may be ; 
the price varies from one-tenth of a penny to a halfpenny a card, 
according to the size of the order. These details refer to the zoological 
portion of the catalogue only ; but the anatomical and physiological 
bibliographies are also in an advanced state of preparation, and will 
soon be supplied with regularity. 

The Museum and Gardens of Trivandrum. 

Tkivandrtjm, the capital of Travancore, in the extreme south of India, 
has a museum and public gardens. The director of these is Mr. 
Harold S. Ferguson, who recently gave two interesting lectures on 
these institutions. From the report published in the Western Star we 
learn that both were originated by Mr. J. A. Brown, who in 1852 was 
appointed astronomer at Trivandrum. This most enthusiastic worker, 
though strongly supported by the Eesident, General Cullen, was 
unable to make much headway against the peculiar ideas of the native 
authorities. His successors, the botanist Colonel Heber Drury, Captain 
Drury, Major Davidson, and finally the chaplain, Mr. Pettigrew, were 
not more successful, though all, except Captain Drury, had correct 
ideas of what such a museum should be. In 1879 the management 
of the museum was placed in the hands of a committee of three, pre- 
sided over by the British Resident, and, thanks chiefly to the honorary 
secretary, Colonel Ketchen, the whole establishment was reorganised. 
Mr. Ferguson himself joined the committee in 1880, and in 1880-87 


spent his furlough in studying museums at home. The conclusions to 
which he then came were in accordance with the enlightened ideas of 
Sir William Flower, and were fully accepted by the committee. Mr. 
Ferguson was given full power to put his plans into effect so far as 
means permitted. In 1890 he succeeded Colonel Ketchen as secretary, 
and had charge of the Zoological and Public Gardens as well. In 1894 
the committee was abolished, and Mr. Ferguson left in sole charge. 
He appears to have proved worthy of the trust placed in him. 

The museum building, completed in 1880, is a beautiful one, 
though, like many fine buildings, not perfectly adapted to museum 
requirements. It consists of a main central hall, 70 feet by 40 feet, 
with walls 35 feet high. Two wings, each 45 feet by 20 feet, with 
walls 15 feet high, join this to two other rooms 50 by 30, with walls 
25 feet high. The main hall is given up to the representation of 
Travancore arts, manufactures, archaeology, and ethnology. In the 
south hall are the invertebrates ; the wing joining it to the central 
hall contains the reptiles and amphibians, and will eventually hold the 
fishes. The north wing is devoted to birds, and the north room to 
mammals. No space seems to be left for geology and botany, and 
these subjects, we are told, are but poorly represented. The exhibited 
systematic series of animals is naturally almost restricted to the fauna 
of Travancore ; but in connection with each of the classes is, or will 
be, an introductory index series. Such a method of arrangement is, 
in our opinion, an improvement on the model, namely, the Natural 
History Museum in London. It permits more ready cross-reference 
and comparison. 

The Zoological and Botanical Gardens, though sanctioned in 1859, 
were not begun in earnest till 1864. The work progressed steadily, 
though slowly, in the hands of Mr. Brown, Major Davidson, Mr. 
Pettigrew, and the committee mentioned above. The grounds gene- 
rally were brought to their present satisfactory condition by Mr. 
Ingleby, who came from Kew in 1891 and remained as Superintendent 
till 1897. In 1867 various animals were transferred from the 
menagerie of the Maharajah. Better houses were subsequently built 
for the larger animals, on the basis of plans supplied by the Zoological 
Society of London. Among the animals now in the gardens, Mr. 
Ferguson mentions the following : The three kinds of monkeys found 
in Travancore ; two lions, obtained from England ; a nervous tiger ; a 
pair of black leopards ; a hyaena ; various Travancore cats ; so-called 
wild dogs; Himalayan and Indian bears; a great one -horned 
rhinoceros : a Malay tapir ; all the Travancore deer ; some Indian 
antelopes ; several species of kangaroo and wallaby, which attracted 
people in thousands from all parts of the country when they first 
bred ; emeus, cassowaries, an African crowned crane, and many other 
birds ; two Hamadryad snakes ; a python, which refused food for a 
year and ten days when it arrived eight years ago ; and a large water 

192 NOTES AND COMMENTS [maech 1899 

lizard, which is death on rats. Mr. Ferguson's lecture contains some 
interesting notes on these animals and on local superstitions attaching 
to them. Travancore is to be congratulated on its gardens and 
museum, and still more on having so capable a public servant as Mr. 

The Transformations of an Earwig. 

In 1881 the late Prof. Westwood described, under the name Dyscritina 
longisetosa, an insect from Ceylon, with the head and body of an 
ordinary earwig, but with a pair of long jointed cercopods on the last 
abdominal segment instead of the usual forceps. Entomologists have 
long suspected that this curious insect would prove to be the immature 
stage of an earwig ; this opinion has now received confirmation by the 
researches of Mr. E. E. Green. In the latest part of the Transactions 
of the Entomological Society, 1898, pp. 381-390, Mr. Green gives an 
account of the development which he has traced, and Mr. M. Burr con- 
tributes systematic notes on the two species of earwig which were 
reared from two distinct forms of Dyscritina. They are referable to 
the genus Diplatys, Serville. 

The most remarkable feature in the development of these insects is 
the method of transformation of the long jointed cercopods into the 
forceps. In one of the species examined the cercopods are much longer 
than the insect's body, in the other somewhat shorter ; but in both the 
basal segment of the cercopod is longer and stouter than the succeeding 
segments. At the last moult but one, all except the basal segments 
are completely shed ; Mr. Green believes that the insects actually bite 
them off ! "Within the truncated cercopods the forceps of the adult can 
be clearly seen, and these are revealed at the final moult. 

It is likely that other tropical earwigs will be found to undergo a 
similar change, contrasting strongly with our European species, which 
are hatched with simple tail-appendages already resembling the forceps 
of the adult. The observations of Mr. Green afford valuable support 
to the view that the forceps are modified cercopods, and indicate the 
affinity of earwigs to the Thysanura and Orthoptera, in which orders 
jointed tail-appendages are so characteristic a feature. 


Vegetable Animation. 

By John H. Wilson, D.Sc, F.B.S.E. 

Most people regard plants as stationary or still objects, exhibiting no 
movement unless such as is due to the action of the wind or other 
external agent. The light, quivering aspen leaves respond instantly to 
the faintest zephyr ; the great shoulders of the hurricane are needed to 
sway the bole and boughs of the gnarled oak. Their oscillation does 
not startle anybody, because inanimate objects possessing elasticity are 
similarly affected by the air in motion. 

Only the slightest reflection is needed to convince us that plants 
are seldom either quite stationary or quite still. If they are alive 
their vital activity will find expression in movement of some kind. 
A long list of instances could be given of parts and organs of plants 
exhibiting movement so slow as to be inappreciable to the unaided 
human vision, and yet quick enough to be- recorded by instruments of 
rude construction. The poet tells us that — 

The sun-flower turns on her god, when he sets, 
The same look which she turn'd when he rose. 

This phenomenon the botanist restates when he says that the 
capitulum of Hcliantlms exhibits heliotropism. A climbing stem 
swings slowly round in space, in an elliptical orbit of growth, until it 
touches some suitable support, -and it thereupon winds itself in a 
tight spiral round the object. The glandular tentacle of the leaf of 
sundew bends, with unerring precision, over the captured prey. 

If we desire records of violent spontaneous movement on the part 
of plants we must either turn to the pseudo-scientific literature of a 
credulous past or to the ultra-scientific vision of the poet. We find 
the bold delineation of the Tartarian Lamb, and note that " it has 
something like four feet, and its body is covered with a kind of 
down. Travellers report that it will suffer no vegetable to grow 
within a certain distance of its feat." We do not learn from the 
traveller's tale why this plant quadruped destroys the vegetation round 

14 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 85. I 93 

1 94 JOHN H. WILSON [makoh 

its " feat." It is a harmless creature compared with one we read 
of next : — 

Fierce in dread silence on the blasted heath 

Fell Upas sits, the Hydra-Tree of death. 

Lo ! from one root, the envenom 'd soil below, 

A thousand vegetative serpents grow ; 

In shiny rays the scaly monster spreads 

O'er ten square leagues his far-diverging heads. 

Although we must not expect to find anything so very sensational 
as this in our study of vegetable motility, it is not without its surprises. 
Who, on first seeing the Sensitive Plant shrink from touch, has not 
exclaimed, " How very wonderful ! " or failed to follow up the ejacula- 
tion by the query, " How does this extraordinary movement take 
place ? " 

The sensitive plant most commonly grown in greenhouses is Mimosa 
pudica ; other species, some of which are only slightly " sensitive," are 
seldomer seen. The common species is easily grown from seed which 
can be purchased, or gathered from plants which have flowered indoors. 
Like many of its congeners it performs the so-called sleep movements, 
closing up and lowering its leaves at night. During the day the leaves 
are spread out flat. If, then, a leaflet at the extremity of the divided 
leaf is touched lightly, in an instant the pair of leaves contiguous to it 
will flap upwards and meet, then the next pair, and the next, until the 
whole series approximate. If the stimulus is sufficiently strong, it 
will pass into the neighbouring secondary leaf-stalks, and not only 
cause the leaflets they bear to meet, but will induce the leaf-stalks 
themselves to come together, like the ribs of a fan when being folded 
up. It is quite possible, with caution, to cause one leaflet alone to move 
without affecting any of the others. When the stimulus has been 
severe, the folding up of the leaflets is followed by the drooping of the 
primary leaf-stalk. A rude shock causes the whole foliage of the 
plant to assume instantly a collapsed and dead appearance. It is a 
mistake to suppose that the approximation of the leaflets must take 
place before the fall of the hinged stalk. By gently pressing on 
the top of the stalk it can be made to descend without disturb- 
ing the leaflets at all. It is noticed that the leaves are more 
sensitive at a certain stage of their growth than later, and that 
the maximum degree of irritability is reached at a certain period of 
the day. 

Eecovery is gradual, not sudden, the time taken in the process 
varying with the age of the leaf and the intensity of the light. 
Elaborate investigations have shown that the motile power is 
centralised in the swellings at the base of the leaflets and leaf-stalks. 
The fluids filling the cells of one side of the cushions are suddenly 
transferred to the opposite side, the equilibrium is disturbed, and the 
leaflets or leaf- stalks must needs move in the direction of least 



J 95 

resistance. It is very interesting to observe, if one gives close 
attention to the appearance of the pale spots at the base of the 
leaflets, that a flush of dull green passes over them at the moment of 
movement. This is most easily seen by holding the stimulated leaflets 
back. The same change of colour is observed in the cushions of the 

It is evident that, whatever the nature of the route along which 
the force of stimulus is conveyed, there must be few obstacles. If it 
is the case that cell is connected with cell by delicate threads of proto- 
plasm which pass through the cell-walls, means of uninterrupted passage 
is afforded when the signal to contract or relax is shot along the tissues 
of the cushion. 

It is not generally known that the cotyledons of Mimosa pudica 
also respond to touch. They originally form 
almost the whole bulk of the seed, and, in 
germination, rise as fleshy, oval, green leaves. 
In a warm temperature they move upward 
fairly quickly, through a considerable angle, 
when touched. It is of more than passing 
interest to find sensitiveness exhibited by em- 
bryonic structures, especially when they differ 
so greatly from the adult ones in form. 

While the leaflets of the Sensitive Plant 
rise to meet each other when irritated, in Oxalis 
(Biophytum) sensitive/, (a plant occasionally grown 
in greenhouses) they fall. The leaves of this 
species are pinnate, not trifoliate, as in our 
native one, wood sorrel. 

The purpose served by the movements de- 
scribed is to secure the protection of the foliage. 
In Dionaea and Aldrooanda, two of the series of 
" Insectivorous Plants " studied so minutely by Darwin, the closure of 
the leaf-blades is to effect the capture respectively of insects and aquatic 
animals. It may be mentioned as a practical matter that Aldrovanda 
is not easily kept healthy for long, unless in water free from lime. 

To many, familiar with the irritability of the Sensitive Plant, the 
discovery of visible movement in other organs than leaves may not 
excite much astonishment. If we cautiously examine the flower of any 
kind of barberry, the columnar pistil will be seen in the centre, with 
six stamens around it leaning backward, close to the petals and sepals. 
If the point of a pencil, or the like, be inserted, as if to reach the 
nectar glands near the base of the petals, there is every likelihood of 
at least two of the stamens suddenly falling forward against it. After 
a short interval the stamens gradually fall back and resume their 
former position, and become ready to repeat the movement when 
touched. A very few experiments show that the stamen differs from 



Seedlings of Mimosa pudica. 

Fig. 1. — Undisturbed. 

c, cotyledon. 

Fig. 2. — Touched (nat. size). 

196 JOHN H. WILSON [march 

the leaflet of the Sensitive Plant, in so far that it does not respond un- 
less it is touched in a certain place. It is an interesting test to bring 
the point of a needle gradually downward, until it reaches the spot in 
the filament where sensitiveness is located. The petals can be taken 
away separately, each with a stamen attached, without causing move- 
ment. If a stamen, still attached to the petal, is touched at the 
sensitive point, it curves inwards suddenly, and after recovery will 
bend again when stimulated. If separated carefully from the petal, 
laid on a flat surface, and touched, the seat of movement is very clearly 
demonstrated, the curvature being then seen to take place entirely at 
the lower part of the filament. The bending is observed to be greater 
in some species than in others. There is no response to stimuli when 
the organs are in course of regaining their equilibrium. 

The copious supplies of nectar poured out from the glands which lie 
at the base of the petals attract bees in numbers to the flowers. The 
instant the proboscis of the bee is inserted, the stamens touched spring- 
forward and cover the insect's head with pollen. In a second he is 
off to plunder another flower, bearing the fertilising powder with him. 
A clump of barberry is redolent of honey. 

While the stamens in the barberry fall forward, there are some 
flowers in which they fall backward, when touched. The most easily 
procured plant showing this is the rock rose (Helianthemum vulgare), a 
low-growing, somewhat woody plant, common on grassy banks and 
moorland spots. The centre of the yellow flowers is occupied by a 
tuft of delicate stamens. They stand close together in the undisturbed 
flower, but when touched at any point they spread out, and the pistil, 
previously hidden, is then exposed. 

Quite a similar mechanism is seen in Sparmannia africana, a Cape 
plant, having no immediate botanical relationship with our rock rose. 
Occasionally seen in our greenhouses, Sparmannia is a shrub of con- 
siderable size, with large hairy leaves and trusses of white flowers stand- 
ing well above the foliage. The individual flowers rise from a pendent to 
an erect position when about to open. The petals, four in number, are 
pure white, with a pink spot and " guiding lines " at their base. They, 
and the four narrow sepals alternating with them, surround the bunch 
of brightly coloured stamens. The filaments, or stalks, of the outer 
stamens are bright yellow, and beaded with curious undulate swellings 
throughout their whole length. The outermost bear no anthers, and 
terminate in a distinct purple point. The inner stamens, on the other 
hand, have crimson filaments, with little or no beading, and they carry 
large pollen-bearing anthers. Transition-forms between the two kinds 
occur plentifully, the most interesting being such as bear the rudiments 
of anthers. In the centre is the small superior, spherical ovary, sur- 
mounted by the delicate style which is equal in length to the longest 
stamens. The flowers have a faint odour, suggestive of whin blossom. 

When the day is sunny the flowers open well out, so that the 


petals are bent back, and the stamens radiate in all directions. The 
latter are, however, never so far separated naturally but that the 
slightest irritation will cause them to spread out farther. If a pencil 
point be applied at the base of a petal, instant divergence of the 

Sparmannia africana. 

Fig. 3. — Undisturbed, p, petal ; sp, sepal. Fig. 4. — Irritated (nat. size). 

Fig. 5. — A stamen (enlarged). 

stamens ensues, and the petals and sepals bend still farther back. If 
the stimulus be severe, the expansion of the tissues uniting the bases 
of the stamens, and the recurving of the petals and sepals, are so great 
as to give the flower the appearance of being turned outside in. 

The organs return very slowly to the position assumed before 
stimulation. The swellings on the filaments probably serve the pur- 
pose of entangling the head of the insect-visitor, and thus securing 
more decided irritation. The stigma is well exposed when the maxi- 
mum spread of the stamens is reached. 

The movements exhibited by the androecium of certain composites, 
notably the corn-flower, have received careful study. If the anthers 
of a newly-opened floret be touched they are immediately drawn 
downwards, with a steady motion, by the contraction of the filaments. 
The pollen, being pressed against the enclosed pistil, wells out for a 
little at the top of the anther-tube in a steady stream. The stigma is 
ultimately carried beyond the tube by the elongation of the style. 

In the Stylidiaceae, a family very closely related to the Compositae, 
we find a remarkable modification of the floral mechanism described 
above. The stamens in Stylidium (Caiulollea) are only two in number, 
and are united with the style to form a trigger-like apparatus, the 
gynostemium, which hangs outside the flower, and is fixed slightly to 
a triangular plate — a modified petal — coated with a sticky exudation. 
Being protandrous, the two anthers occupy at first the summit of this 
bent column, and in a day or two they wither, and the stigma enlarges 



[march 1899 

and takes their place. If the action of an insect attempting to enter 
the flower be imitated, and the lightest touch given in the throat, the 
protruding organ swings with startling rapidity through an angle of 
270°, and comes to lie over the flower with its apex pointing down- 
wards. After a short interval the gynostemium slowly rises and 
resumes its former position, there to gather energy for another stroke. 
It is easy to demonstrate that it is most sensitive where it is bent at 
the throat of the flower. The sudden movement is ostensibly associated 
with the visits of insects. From the visitor's point of view the recep- 
tion can hardly be characterised as anything else than violent. One 
almost feels inclined to think that Stylidium has become more annoyed 

10 " / <f 

Flowers and floral parts of Stylidium. 

Fig. 6. — Flower undisturbed. Fig. 7. — Touched. Figs. 8, 9. — Sticky shield. 

Figs. 10, 11. — Earlier and later conditions of the apex of the gynostemium. (All enlarged.) 

than the barberry at the slow pace of the insects, and has acquired 
means of suddenly stimulating them to greater activity. 

It may be mentioned that the nettle, and its allies pellitory and 
the " Artillery Plant " (Pilea) spontaneously and violently fling the 
pollen out of the anthers, once for all, by the sudden release of the 
tense filaments at maturity. 

A movement analogous to that of the leaves of the Sensitive Plant 
is seen in the closing of the stigmatic lobes of Musk, Torenia, Bignonia, 
Butterwort, and certain other plants, when they are touched. 

All motility in flowers, whether spontaneous or induced, has 
reference to fertilisation processes. 

"We have confined our attention to examples of plants which per- 
form induced movements quick enough to be seen by the unaided eye. 
We are greatly tempted to regard the phenomena as sentient, and 
unwittingly fall into the habit of speaking of them as such. An 
effort is made, by using the rather ambiguous words " irritable," 
" contractile," and the like, to avoid giving wrong impressions. 

St. Andrews. 

The Great Glacial Moraine of Permian Age in 

South Africa. 

By Professor T. Eupert Jones, F.E.S. 

It has often been pointed out that the mountains ranging along and 
within the coast of the Cape Colony and Zululand, not only have a 
general parallelism with that coast-line, but consist of parallel groups 
of stratified formations of schist, sandstone, and conglomerate, with 
some interruption of granite near the Cape itself, and with a vacant 
space between Albany and Natal. The upstanding edges of these 
bedded rocks westward from near the Cape pass in a curved line 
northward to Namaqualand. On the other side of the Cape they 
continue into the Eastern Province until they are cut off by the 
Indian Ocean, south of East London. Nevertheless, as they occur 
again in the mainland south of, through, and beyond Natal, there has 
evidently been a loss of the great eastern curve of the parallel ranges, 
the extreme south-eastern angle of the bluntly triangular southern end 
of the African continent having been removed by denudation and 

One of the most important of these concentric stratified rocks is 
the innermost band, known as the " Dwyka Conglomerate," probably 
of Permian ao;e. It ranges at about a hundred miles or more from 
the sea in the country north of Cape Town ; and after bending eastward 
at the Cape its distance from the coast is for the most part less than 
a hundred miles, until it is cut off by the sea at Albany. "When it 
reasserts itself in Natal and ZuTuland it keeps parallel with, and at 
no great distance from, the coast ; and, as in Albany and elsewhere, is 
here represented by more than one band. 

Mr. A. G. Bain traced this peculiar rock-band from Albany to the 
Cape (east to west, 450 miles), then on the curve to Toverberg, near 
the junction of the Doom and Pataties rivers (50 miles), thence north 
to Hantam (350 miles). He also noticed two separate narrow masses 
of this conglomerate to the south of its range, near the Cape, and 
some parallel duplications, also on the south, in Albany. Thus Bain 
knew it for about 800 miles in 1856. Since then its northern range 
on the west side above Hantam and eastward to Douglas (about 50 





miles), and northward to Mafeking (about 40 miles), as well as its 
northward range on the east side, have been mapped by other 
geologists. From the mouths of the Gualana and Breka rivers to 
St. John's (40 miles) is a blank, this special band there lying on 
the ocean-bed. From St. John's to Swaziland is about 70 miles. 
Altogether, the known length of the outcrop of this " Dwyka Con- 
glomerate " is more than 1000 miles. 

Stretching from one side of this southern part of the continent to 
the other, with a roughly semicircular contour on its southern line, it 
encloses a large gulf-like area, less oblong and more crescentic than 
the Bay of Tripoli on the north African coast, and of somewhat greater 


P R O T £ C 

l^_s^^_ f*i f k.^\ 'SOUTH AFRICAN^ 

Outline Map of South Africa, slightly modified from that published. by David Draper in 
Trans. Geol. Soc. S. Africa, 1896, vol. i. 

length. Its further extension at the sides to N.W. and N.E., from 
about lat. 30° S., between the meridians 25° and 33° E. long., prob- 
ably fails to indicate its real extent. 

The locality where this great boulder-band was first specially 
noticed was at Ecca Vale and Ecca Heights, near Grahamstown ; and 
it has been referred to as the Ecca Conglomerate by some writers, but 
since E. J. Dunn, formerly Colonial Geologist, noticed a good section 
of this rock, where traversed by the Dwyka river (one of the head- 
waters of the Gauritz in Cape Colony), it has been called the " Dwyka 

The constitution of this innermost band of the concentric coast- 
ranges has been variously described by observers according to its 


appearance as seen at different places. It has been described (1) as 
a rock of igneous origin (" claystone-porphyry ") ; (2) as being a 
glacier-formed boulder-clay or moraine ; (3) as a breccia composed of 
angular fragments of volcanic rocks (" trap-breccia ") ; (4) as having 
been a long line of beach, consisting of blocks, boulders, pebbles, and 
sand, with volcanic dust and ashes, on the margin of a wide shallow 
inland sea or lake, disturbed by subaqueous volcanic eruptions ; (5) 
and lately Dr. G. A. E. Molengraaf, State Geologist, examining this 
peculiar formation in Zululand, finds evidence that it is really to be 
regarded as the modified boulder-clay and the moraine of an enormous 
sheet of land-ice, possibly part of the Antarctic ice-cap of former 
times ; also that, as with other moraines, during the slow retreat of 
its ice-field, the water draining from it carried away and spread out 
the pebbles, sand, and mud separated from its coarser materials. 
These formed special deposits in river-reaches, lakes, and marshes, over 
a wide area northward of the hollow curve of its line of retreat. This 
outspread of the morainic material is recognised as the " Ecca Beds," 
lying parallel with the moraine (Dwyka Conglomerate), all across the 
Cape Colony and up through Natal and Zululand. Mr. G. W. Stow's 
" Olive Shales," associated with the " Boulder-drift " of Backhouse and 
Douglas, north-west of the Hopetown district, come into the same 

In geological position the Dwyka Conglomerate lies directly upon 
the Carboniferous quartzite of the Wittebergen and the Zuurbergen, 
and beneath the Ecca beds, which indeed are interlaced with it at 
some parts of its range, and pass up into the Karoo beds of Mesozoic 
age. Hence the glacial conditions, originating the conglomerate or 
moraine, must have been either in the latest Palaeozoic (Permian) or 
the earliest Mesozoic times. 

How far those ancient glaciers reached northward beyond the 
present curved morainic border — that is, to what extent glaciers may 
have occupied the broad hollow, delimited by Palaeozoic rocks, and in 
which now lie the Ecca and superincumbent Karoo beds, with their 
concomitant igneous rocks, constituting so large a portion of South 
Africa — is a subject full of interest. 

The long curvature of this ancient moraine may be likened to 
some of the sinuosities of the irregular line of great moraines crossing 
North America, and due to the glaciers of the Arctic ice-fields during 
the relatively modern Glacial Period, often alluded to by geologists 
as the " Great Ice Age " of Quaternary times. 

The mountainous land at the Cape can be only a mere remnant 
of the high lands once reaching southward to the Arctic Circle, and 
far beyond it, if continuous with the existing visible polar lands, which 
are about 30 degrees south of the Cape. (See G. W. Stow's remarks on 
this continent, Quart. Journ. Gcol. Sac, 1871, vol. xxvii. p. 546, etc.) 

Whether a perfect polar ice-cap or partial ice-fields originated the 

202 T. RUPERT JONES [march 1899 

morainic fringe of which the Dwyka Conglomerate remains in evidence, 
Palaeozoic and Archaean rocks must have pre-existed, and have been 
covered up and worn down by the glacial covering. And of its 
scrapings, scorings, and smoothings, evidence doubtless still exists 
among their hills, valleys, and gorges, their krantzes, kloofs, and 
poorts in that maritime region, including Namaqualand, Clanwilliam, 
Malmesbury, Swellendam, George, Kuysa, and their neighbouring 
divisions, except where obliterated by subsequent weathering. 

Some of their morainic materials may have been left as terminal 
like the Dwyka band, or as local belts during retreat, like those seen 
in the Zwarte Bug of the Cold Bokkeveldt, and in the Witteberg, in 
Cape Colony, and in the Zuurberg in Albany, and near the coast in 

Some of the memoirs more particularly treating of the Dwyka 
Conglomerate : — 

A. G. Bain, Trans. Gcol. Soc, 1845, ser. ii. vol. vii. part ii. p. 54 ; and 1856, part iv. 

p. 185. 
A. Wyley, " Notes on a Journey in Two Directions across the Colony," 1859. 
P. C. Sutherland, Quart. Journ. Gcol. Soc, 1870, vol. xxvi. p. 514. 

C. L. Griesbach, Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc, 1871, vol. xxvii. p. 58. 

G. W. Stow, "The Backhouse and Douglas Boulder-drift and Olive Shales," Quart. Journ. 

Geol. Soc, 1874, vol. xxx. pp. 599, 634, etc. 
E. J. Dunn, ''Report on the Camdeboo and Neuweldt Coal," 1879. 
A. H. Greex, Quart. Journ. Gcol. Soc, 1888, vol. xliv. pp. 241 ct scq. 

D. Draper, Quart. Journ. Gcol. Soc, 1894, vol. 1. p. 559. 
Trans. Gcol. Soc S. Africa, 1896, vol. i. pp. 90, etc. 

G. A. F. Molengraaf, Trans. Gcol. Soc. S. Africa, 1898, vol. iv. pp. 103-115. 

17 Parson's Green, London, S.W. 

The Penycuik Experiments : l An Appreciation. 

By J. Arthue Thomson, M.A. 

Without raising the vexed question of the relative value of reflection 
and experiment, or admitting that the antithesis is a just one, we may 
take it that one of the most hopeful signs of progress in evolution- 
theory is the increasing prominence of experimental work, and it is on 
this general ground first of all that we welcome Prof. Cossar Ewart's 
studies in heredity, well known in interested circles as " The Peny- 
cuik Experiments." For it is certain that we have here no fireside 
musings as to what might be, but the work of a persistent and patient 
experimenter, with his coat off and his sleeves up, trying to discover 
what is. 

In giving some account of what has been done by Prof. Ewart, 
one meets the difficulty that most of the points tested are necessarily 
concerned with individual animals, which, however familiar to the 
experimenter, are very apt to get mixed in the mind of an outsider. 
In order, then, to avoid the somewhat fatiguing exercise of keeping 
Matopo and Mulatto, Romulus and Remus, Biddy and Brenda, Norette 
and Hekla, as clear individualities in the mind — which is easy enough 
with the beautifully illustrated book before us — we propose to find the 
thread of our summary rather in the general ideas than in the 
fascinating living things. And the ideas round which the experi- 
ments have arisen are Reversion, Prepotency, Inbreeding, Telegony. 


A great part of the work done concerns zebra hybrids, of which 
nine (zebrules) were got from the Burchell zebra stallion, Matopo, and 
various mares, and others from zebra mares served by pony (zebrinnies) 
and donkey. These hybrids, charming and beautiful creatures, may 
turn out to be of high practical value, but their present interest is 
mainly theoretical. 

It may be pointed out first of all that the numerous previous 

1 "The Penycuik Experiments," by J. C. Ewart, M.D., F.R.S., Regius Professor of 
Natural History, University of Edinburgh. 8vo. pp. xciii. + ]77, with 46 figs. London : 
A. and C. Black, 1899. 


204 J. ARTHUR THOMSON [march 

experiments ou hybridisation, made by botanists, zoologists, and prac- 
tical people, have led us to expect one of three results when a 
crossing has a successful issue. (1) The hybrid may be intermediate 
between its parents, sometimes so exactly that we may liken the 
blending to warp and woof; or (2) the hybrid may show an exaggera- 
tion of the characters of one parent, often with little apparent 
realisation of the peculiarities of the other; or (3) the hybrid may be 
very different from either parent, showing features at first sight novel, 
but which on closer investigation are sometimes interpretable as the 
reassertion of the characters of a remoter ancestor. But the extra- 
ordinary thing is that at least two of these three different results may 
be illustrated in one brood or litter. 

According to the theory of reversion, confessedly a somewhat 
unfortunate term, the resemblance which an offspring often exhibits to 
a more or less distant ancestor, is due to the realisation of characters 
which were throughout part of the inheritance, but remained latent or 
unexpressed for one or more generations. As to the fact of resem- 
blance to ancestors there is no more doubt than there is as to 
resemblance to parents ; the theoretical element is simply in the idea 
of latent characters. If we do not accept the idea that resemblance to 
ancestors is due to the reassertion of latent elements in the inheritance, 
we must find some other explanation. And there seem to be two 
possibilities — (1) that the ancestral resemblance may be due to the 
fresh and independent occurrence of the same permutations and 
combinations of germinal material as took place when the ancestral 
character had its origin ; or (2) that the character of resemblance may 
be an individually acquired " modification," reproduced, apart from 
inheritance, by a recurrence of suitable external conditions. 

It seems impossible to read the literature on the subject without 
becoming convinced that many phenomena are labelled reversions on 
the flimsiest of evidence. Thus the occurrence of a Cyclopean human 
monster with a median eye has been called a reversion to the sea- 
squirt, and gout has been called a reversion to the reptilian condition 
of liver and kidneys. Often there has not been the slightest attempt 
made to discriminate between true reversion (i.e. the re-expression of 
latent ancestral characters) and the phenomena of arrested develop- 
ment, or of abnormalities which have plainly been induced from 
without. Often, too, there has been no scruple in naming or inventing 
the ancestor to whom the reversion is supposed to occur, although 
evidence of the pedigree is awanting ; and the vicious circle is not 
unknown of arguing to the supposed ancestor from the supposed 
reversion, and then justifying the term reversion from its resemblance 
to the supposed ancestor. Little allowance has been made for 
coincidence, and the postulate of characters remaining latent for 
millions of years is made as glibly as if it were just as simple as a 
throw-back to a great-grandfather. 


Now it is one of the merits of Professor Ewart's work that he has 
done much to place the doctrine of reversion on a firmer basis of 
carefully criticised instances. While Mr. Bateson expressed the views 
of many when he said — " Around the term reversion a singular set of 
false ideas have gathered themselves," and that "it would probably 
help the science of biology if the word ' reversion ' and the ideas 
which it denotes were wholly dropped, at all events until variation 
has been studied much more fully than it has yet been," Professor 
Ewart's cases will certainly tend to reassure the doubtful as to the 
reasonableness of the reversion interpretation. 

Just as von Baer made the chick pre-eminently the bird of the 
embryologist, so Darwin made the pigeon pre-eminently the bird of 
the biologist, and Professor Ewart gives it the first place in his 
systematised record of experiments. The most striking case is the 
following : — A pure white fantail cock, which in colour proved to be 
prepotent over a blue pouter, was mated with a cross previously made 
between an owl and an archangel, which was far more of an owl than 
an archangel. The result was a couple of fantail-owl-archangel 
crosses, one resembling the Shetland rock-pigeon, and the other the 
blue rock of India. Not only in colour, but in form, attitude, and 
movements there was an almost complete reversion to the form which 
is believed to be ancestral to all the domestic pigeons. The only 
marked difference is a slight arching of the tail. The one parent, a 
white fantail, belongs to an old-established breed ; the other parent, an 
owl-archangel cross, had already more or less lost the characters of the 
relatively recent archangel, and had begun to revert towards the blue 
rock ; the progeny of the two was a practically complete reversion. 
The interpretation suggested is that the older and more stable 
ancestral units assert themselves successfully in the germinal struggle, 
while the newer features attain no development. 

A few other examples may be noted. An Indian game Dorking- 
cock, crossed with a dark bantam hen, produced amongst others a 
cockerel almost identical with a jungle fowl (Gallus banhiva), i.e. with 
the original wild stock. 

A smooth-coated white rabbit, derived from an Angora and a 
smooth-coated white buck, was "mated with a smooth-coated, almost 
white doe (granddaughter of a Himalaya doe), with very interesting 
results, significant of the complexity of the conditions. In the litter 
of three, one is the image of the mother, one is an Angora like the 
paternal grandmother, and one is a Himalaya like the maternal great- 

Again, the Burchell zebra-horse hybrids are in their markings very 
unlike their zebra sire or dam, but bear distinct resemblance in their 
stripes to the Somaliland zebra (Eqims grevyi), which the author regards 
as, in its markings at least, the most primitive of all living zebras. 
But the evidence from pigeons and rabbits seems stronger than this. 

2o6 J. ARTHUR THOMSON [march 

It must be carefully noted that the experiments have been numerous, 
for it is only thus that the element of coincidence can be duly allowed 
for. And the general result stands out clearly that the reversion- 
interpretation has received substantial support. 

At the same time it seems extremely doubtful whether such 
a phenomenon as a complete ulna in a horse, and other cases of the 
same sort which are cited, furnish any relevant evidence of reversion. 


When an organism of either sex shows great power in transmitting 
its individual characteristics, it is said to be prepotent as regards these. 
A stallion or a mare, a bull or a cow, may be so prepotent that its 
characters reappear in a high percentage of the offspring, no matter 
what the other parent may be. 

It seems doubtful whether anything beyond convenience is gained 
by the word prepotency — since all these general terms are apt to form 
the dust-particles of intellectual fog ; what we have to do with is the 
fact that certain variations are markedly stable, heritable, and per- 
sistent, almost aggressively persistent one might say. It seems likely 
that they express positions of relatively great organic equilibrium. 

The quality of prepotency is obviously a relative one, and only 
verifiable in its results. That is to say, it is never more than probable 
in its exercise. Nor are we able, at the present stage of biological 
analysis, to define with any precision wherein the secret of prepotency 
actually lies. We have hardly got beyond imagining that there is a 
struggle in the germ-cells before and after fertilisation, and that there 
is a survival of the fitter components within the microcosm of the ovum 
just as in the macrocosm outside. 

Yet, in spite of the obscurity which shrouds the interpretation, the 
fact of prepotency is certain, and it is of direct human interest not only 
in connection with the breeding of stock, but also as regards the 
evolution of races of men. The stud-books show the enormous value 
of a prepotent sire, and we may regard the persistence of a Celtic, 
Semitic, or Gipsy strain, in spite of complex intercrossing in the 
pedigree, as an illustration of prepotency. 

This quality, so potent for good or ill, may arise in one of two 
ways — (a) as an attribute of a " sport " or discontinuous variant, or 
(b) as the result of inbreeding. As to the former, Standfuss, who has 
had so much experience in hybridising butterflies, says that when a 
sporadic variety is crossed with the normal form of the stock the result 
is that the offspring agree either with the normal form or with the 
sport, intermediate forms being absent, [" Handbuch der palaeark- 
tischen Gross-Schmetterlinge," 2nd edition. Jena, 1896]. Similarly, 
Mr. J. W. Tutt reports among the conclusions of Dr. Biding and Mr. 
Bacot as to hybridising species of Tcplirosia, that while the (phylo- 


genetically) older species is usually dominant, a recently-formed aberra- 
tion may be prepotent over the type from which it has but recently 
arisen [Trans. Entom. Soc. London, 1898, pp. 17-42]. Mr. Galton 
holds a similar view, and regards prepotency as itself " a heritable 
sport or aberrant variation." 

While in no way overlooking or combating this position, Prof. 
Ewart lays emphasis on the second, and probably more frequent origin 
of prepotency, as the result of inbreeding. " Some breeders say that 
they can produce a horse so prepotent, so fixed by interbreeding, that 
it will produce its like however mated " ; and there is much evidence 
to show that, of two parents, the more inbred — up to a certain limit of 
stability — is likely to have the greater influence on the offspring. 

A few examples will suffice. An inbred Dalmatian dog is likely 
to be prepotent over a collie, a Basset hound over the ancestral blood- 
hound, an inbred hornless Galloway over one of the long-horned High- 
land cattle, and Semitic over English blood. 

As inbreeding is frequent in nature, especially among gregarious 
and isolated groups, and as it tends to develop prepotency, we are able 
to understand better how new variations may have persisted in the 
course of evolution. The old difficulty that new variations would tend 
to be swamped or levelled down by intercrossing was met by Eomanes 
and Gulick in their theory of Isolation, some form of which was sup- 
posed to limit the range of effective intercrossing. But as this theory 
has not been sufficiently demonstrated, Prof. Ewart justly insists on 
the importance of prepotency as an evolutionary factor. But may it 
not be said that the prepotency which results from inbreeding is itself 
the result of some form of Isolation ? Even preferential mating is a 
form of Isolation in the wide sense. 

Just as in connection with the determination of the sex of the 
offspring, which may be the resultant of many factors, so in the case 
of prepotency the result which may be reasonably predicted does not 
always come off, the natural prepotency being counteracted by other 
influences due to vigour, age, nutrition, and environment. 

The unpredictable nature of the results is well illustrated in Prof. 
Ewart's observations on crossing wild and tame forms. When white 
doe-rabbits were paired with wild brown bucks, the progeny resembled 
the wild form ; but of the nine zebra-horse hybrids only two take 
predominantly after the wild parent. The experiments which others 
have made on butterflies suggest the conclusion that the older form 
will tend to be dominant, but this may simply mean that the hybrid- 
isation has evoked reversion. We seem to have securer evidence as 
to prepotency in such a case as the Basset predominant over the 
bloodhound from which it is derived. 

The experiments of Standfuss tended to the conclusion that in 
hybridising the male parent was prepotent over ' the female; the young 
forms were at first liker the female (which may be in part due to the 

208 / ARTHUR THOMSON [march 

ovum being relatively much larger than the sperm), but with further 
growth the resemblance to the male gradually increased. But in the 
experiments recorded by Mr. Tutt, it is noted that the influence of the 
male parent seems to be less than that of the female. It seems likely 
that the discrepancy is to be in part accounted for on the lines of Mr. 
Vernon's conclusion as to sea-urchins, that the characteristics of the 
hybrid offspring depend directly on the relative degrees of maturity of 
the sex-cells of the two parents. Professor Ewart has not found any 
reason to regard prepotency as correlated with sex. As he cautiously 
says : — " When allowance is made for reversion, inbreeding, and various 
other factors, it is extremely difficult to estimate how far the one sex 
predominates over the other." 


The diversity of opinion in regard to inbreeding, which some exalt 
as essential to the success of a race, and others decry because of alleged 
baneful influences, is probably due to the fact that it is beneficial only 
up to a given limit, and that it is apt to fail prematurely because of 
some taint in the stock. 

On the one hand, it is advantageous in fixing character or 
developing prepotency, as Professor Ewart illustrates by Dalmatian dogs, 
Basset hounds, and hornless Galloway cattle. As Galton maintains, the 
mating of two extraordinary members of two stocks is likely to be 
followed by a heavy filial regression, while this tends to be slight 
between two equally-gifted but not extraordinary members of a high- 
class inbred stock. Moreover, with the extension of an untainted 
pedigree the risk of serious reversion is probably lessened, for there are 
probably limits to the duration of latent characters. In other words, 
the more thorough the inbreeding, within the limits of stability, the less 
will be the normal quantitative filial regression, and the less will be 
the risk of the more qualitative reversion. On the other hand, as to 
disadvantages, there is on a 'priori grounds a necessary lessening of 
variability, since that is in part conditioned by cross-breeding ; and there 
is the actual fact that inbreeding often goes too far, and results in loss 
of vitality and in degeneration. Professor Ewart instances the cases of 
foxhounds, hogs, guinea-pigs, and race-horses. Sir Everett Millais noted 
in regard to inbred dogs that distemper carries off about 60 to 70 per 
cent, of those attacked, and that hereditary deformity and disease tend 
to be induced. 

It may be of interest to recall the experiments which Eitzema Bos 
made some years ago with rats (Mus deeumanus). From seven of one 
family and an unrelated male which died after two crossings, he con- 
tinued inbreeding for six years, about thirty generations. In 1887 the 
average number of a litter was 7|-, in 1891 4:^, in 1892 3^ The 
rate of mortality and the number of infertile pairings greatly increased 
(Biol. Centralbl. 1894, xiv. pp. 75-81). 


Believing that the inbreeding of race-horses in Britain has now 
passed beyond the limit of stability, and that the stock is on the down- 
grade, — a danger dreaded by many with an anxiety which seems to 
others uncalled for — Professor Ewart points out that the racer, whose 
artificial evolution has cost so much, may be saved by bringing in fresh 
blood in the form of imported Barb and Arab mares (as Sir Everett 
Millais saved his Bassets by bringing in bloodhounds), or by crossing 
with imports from America and Australia, which have become somewhat 
different in their new environment. 

All this is of much interest in connection with mankind. Thus it 
has been maintained, as recently by Beibmayr {Nat. Sci. xiv. p. 95), 
that the evolution of a human race implies alternating periods of 
dominant inbreeding and dominant cross-breeding. The inbreeding 
is necessary to give fixity to character, the cross-breeding is necessary 
to avert degeneracy and to stimulate new variations which form the 
raw material of future progress. The antithesis between the Jews 
with their persistent inbreeding, and the complex cross-breeding at 
present conspicuous in America, is one of almost diagrammatic vividness. 

On the vexed question of the sterility of hybrids and what it 
means when it occurs, Professor Ewart has not as yet been able to shed 
much light. It is well known that hybrids between different species 
are sometimes quite fertile, as in the case of the crosses between 
common goose and Chinese goose, common duck and pintail duck ; in 
other cases, however, the result is sterility. Thus it has not been proved 
that a female mule has ever produced a foal, though she may produce 
milk. It is remarkable that the reproductive organs do not seem to 
have been investigated either in mule or hinny. 

In the two-year-old zebra-horse hybrid- Romulus, the reproductive 
organs and instincts seem to be fully developed, but the reproductive 
elements are still immature (with the merest rudiment of a tail). The 
same was true of a male zebra-ass hybrid, which unfortunately died. 
In a female zebra-mule (zebrule), the reproductive organs, which were 
of a zebroid type, seemed normal, and the ovary showed well-developed 
follicles ; but no proof of fertility has yet been obtained in any case. 
A nine-year-old zebrinny (horse-zebra hybrid) seemed sterile with both 
Arab and Clydesdale horses. 


The interest which is so often aroused by obscure phenomena is 
well illustrated in connection with telegony, — or the supposed influence 
of a sire on offspring not his own, but by the same mother. The 
literature of the subject suggests that dealing with the somewhat 
cognate problem of maternal impressions, it tends to be anecdotal 
rather than precise. The discussion practically dates from Lord 
Morton's famous letter to the Royal Society (1820), in which he related 

15 — NAT. SC— VOL. XIV. NO. 85. 

2io /. ARTHUR THOMSON [march 

that an Arab mare which had borne a hybrid to a quagga, had subse- 
quently colts by a horse, and that these were marked by stripes and 
by some other peculiarities supposed to be quagga-like. Agassiz, 
Darwin, Spencer, and others have expressed their belief in the fact ; 
Settegast, Nathusius, Weismann, and others are extremely sceptical ; 
Professor Ewart has followed the path which Romanes had only 
time to set foot upon, the only secure path, that of definite 

In general terms, he has made a number of experiments likely to 
give telegony the best possible chance of declaring itself, and although 
he displays his scientific mood in abstaining from dogmatic conclusion, 
and in suggesting fifteen other experiments which should be made, 
the verdict is that so far the evidence of any undoubted telegony 
is most unsatisfactory. The experiments prove this at least, that 
telegony does not always occur, indeed that anything suggestive of it 
occurs only in a very small percentage of cases. Moreover, where 
peculiar phenomena of inheritance were observed, they seemed to be 
readily explicable by the reversion hypothesis. It is impossible to 
withhold admiration when we consider these experiments, involving as 
they have done so much patience and vigilance, hindered as they 
have often been by mortality, and very costly withal. If Professor 
Ewart had originally any bias on the matter, there is no trace of this 
in his experimentation and exposition. 

The most general form of the belief in telegony may be called the 
infection hypothesis, the idea of which is that the reproductive organs 
of the mother are specifically infected by having offspring to a 
particular male, — so specifically infected that her subsequent offspring by 
other males may exhibit some characteristics of the first sire. The race- 
horse Blair Athol had a very characteristic blaze, or white bald face ; 
it is said that mares after having foals to Blair Athol, produced Blair 
Athol-like foals to other stallions utterly unlike Blair Athol. It is 
supposed that this resemblance was due to an infection of the germinal 
material by the Blair Athol semen. 

A slightly modified form of the infection hypothesis is that of 
saturation, according to which it is supposed that the characters of the 
sire expressing themselves in the unborn embryo saturate into the 
dam, and affect her constitution in such a way that her offspring by 
subsequent sires inherit some of the characteristics of the first. But 
while it is conceivable that this may sometimes be the case with a 
poison or a protective toxin which might diffuse in and out, it seems 
almost inconceivable when we think of structural characters. We can 
imagine that a sire infected with some virulent disease, and showing 
certain structural disturbances associated therewith, may have offspring 
which are similarly affected, and that the influence from them unborn 
may saturate into the mother and affect her, so that subsequent 
offspring by a healthy sire are modified after the manner of the first. 




But such cases have a practical rather thau a theoretical interest ; 
they hardly touch the problems of heredity or evolution. 

On a priori grounds, the probabilities are strongly against the 
occurrence of telegony, but there is no foothold except in the experi- 
mental test, and that is what Professor Ewart has given us. 

The general nature of the experiments is well known, and for the 
interesting details the book and its beautiful pictures must be con- 
sulted. It may suffice to mention one of the best cases. A Bum 

Fig. 1 — Matopo. 

Fig. 2 — Romulus. 

pony mare, Mulatto, was served by the Burchell zebra stallion 
Matopo, and the result was Eomulus, with markings quite different 
from those of his sire, but suggestive rather of the Somali type. In 
1897 Mulatto had a bay colt foal to a gray Arab stallion, and this 
foal — unfortunately short-lived — gave no proof of telegony. The 
stripes which most frequently occur in horses were absent ; there were 
others which are not uncommon in horses ; but the most distinct 
markings (not that any were strongly developed), namely, those across 
the croup, were of a sort extremely rare in both foals and horses. In 
short, the marking of Mulatto's second foal is puzzling, but in no definite 



[makch 1899 

way suggestive of telegony. In this, as in other cases, the verdict 
must be non-proven. 

The psychological problem is interesting, how the belief in telegony 
has become so very widespread ; and the probable answer is twofold, 
that people are indescribably careless about their beliefs, breeders 
being notoriously too superstitious, and that the more careful may be 
easily misled by reversion phenomena which have resulted from the 
intercrossing. When instances of apparent telegony, of which there 
are many on record, are carefully analysed, or when the pedigree is 
traced back, flaws and fallacies are in most cases revealed, as Dr. 0. 

Fig. 3 — Mulatto's Second Foal. 

vom Eath has well shown in an intricate family history of cats (Biol. 
■GentralU. 1895, xv. pp. 333, 334). 

To sum up : These interesting experiments, of which it is to be 
hoped we have had only a preliminary instalment, afford vivid illustra- 
tions of the unexpectedness of consequences in hybridisation, some 
cogent scientific evidence of reversion, some analysis of prepotency and 
its connection with inbreeding, and some demonstration of the difficulty 
of proving telegony. In more general terms, they have already done 
not a little towards the fulfilment of Professor Ewart's main intention 
of making breeding less empirical and the facts of inheritance less 
obscure; and all biologists will agree in looking with eagerness for 
more " Penycuik Experiments." 

11 Ramsay Garden, 


The Geographical Distribution of the Arachnida 
of the Orders Pedipalpi and Solifugae. 

By R I. Pocock. 

Since the science of zoo-geography has hitherto been studied mainly 
from the vertebrate standpoint, one of the most interesting develop- 
ments of the science in the future will be to discover whether the 
results obtained by a knowledge of the distribution of the orders of 
terrestrial invertebrates contradict or coincide with those that have 
been obtained by a study of the reptiles, birds, and mammals. More- 
over, since it is generally admitted that the only means of mapping 
the various geographical realms, regions, and provinces, on the basis of 
an acquaintance with the dispersal of all land-species, is the publication 
on the part of specialists of charts representing the range of the orders, 
families, and genera with which they alone are familiar, it behoves all 
systematic workers who are interested in this important branch of 
zoology to contribute what they can to this desirable result. 

In the May number of Natural Science for 1894 1 briefly discussed 
the geographical distribution of scorpions, and attempted to map out 
the regions which the ascertained facts with regard to the range of the 
families and genera of these Arachnida seemed to establish. In the 
present paper I propose to deal in the same way with two other orders 
of the class, namely, the Pedipalpi and Solifugae. Unfortunately, to 
many of the readers of Natural Science these names will perhaps con- 
vey no idea of the nature of the animals under discussion ; but since it 
is impossible to enter at length into an explanation of their systematic 
position, a very few words on this point must suffice. 

The term Pedipalpi is applied to a group of Arachnida which, 
while possessing striking structural peculiarities of its own, lies in 
many respects midway between scorpions and spiders. It is divisible 
into two sub-groups ; the Uropygi or tail-bearing Pedipalps, in which 
the last abdominal somite retains, in the form either of a many-jointed 
feeler or of a one-jointed horny piece, a post-anal sclerite or telson, the 
homologue of a scorpion's sting ; and the Amblypygi or tailless Pedi- 
palps, in which this sclerite has disappeared. These two sub-groups, 
the Uropygi and Amblypygi, are so very distinct that in the following 


214 R. I- POCOCK [march 

pages I have treated them entirely apart. The best known members 
of the Uropygi are sometimes called whip-scorpions, in allusion to 
their superficial resemblance to the true scorpions, and to the thread- 
like form of the long many-jointed tail-piece. They were formerly 
comprehensively spoken of in works on zoology as Thelyphonus. Simi- 
larly the Uropygi, which, owing to the shortness and greater width of 
the body and to the absence of a " tail," are more like spiders than 
scorpions, are better known collectively as "Phrynus." 1 

The Solifugae (or Solpugas) constitute a fourth " group " of Arach- 
nida, very distinct indeed from the scorpions, Pedipalpi, and spiders, 
though often by the uninitiated confounded with the latter on account 
of their similarity in external form. The most familiar names con- 
nected with this order are Galeodes and Sotyntr/a. 

In many respects these Arachnida and the scorpions are well suited 
for the study of zoo-geographical problems. In the first place, as 
compared with other terrestrial invertebrates, they are for the most 
part of considerable size, and are on that account not likely to have 
been overlooked by collectors in any of .the land-areas, like New 
Zealand, where they appear to be absent. In the second place, the 
mutual relationships of the genera 2 are tolerably well understood. In 
the third place they are practically dependent for their dispersal upon 
continuity of land, since they cannot fly, and there is no reason to 
suppose that they are able to swim or even to float ; nor is it likely 
that they can withstand immersion for any length of time in either fresh 
or salt water, and except in the case of one or two species of scorpions, 
there is no evidence, nor indeed any reason to think, that their dis- 
tribution is due to human agency. In the fourth place, since they are 
exclusively carnivorous, and will eat anything in the way of animal 
life from small vertebrates to insects, centipedes, and worms, none of 
the species are limited by the nature of their diet to any one particular 
locality, their food being universally distributed. 

Lastly, although they reach the maximum of their development 
both as regards size of individuals and numbers of species and genera 
in the tropical and warmer temperate parts of the world, it would be 
erroneous to suppose that they are only capable of supporting life in 
countries where the temperature is warm and fairly uniform throughout 
the year. Scorpions, for example, are found at high altitudes in the 
Alps (7000 ft.), and as far to the south in Patagonia as the 50th 
parallel of latitude, where the mean temperature of winter is a little 
above freezing-point. Species of Galeodes (Solifugae) occur in the 
steppes of South Eussia and Western Asia where the scorching heat 
of summer is succeeded by a winter of corresponding rigour. Even 
the whip-scorpions (Thelyphonidae) extend in Eastern Asia up to about 

1 In systematic zoology this name has dropped out of use as a synonym of the older 
name Tarantula. 

2 Except possibly in the case of some genera of Solifugae. 


45° N., where, according to Mr. Buchan's charts, the mean temperature 
of July is the same as that of South Europe, but that of January is 
lower than that of the north of Scotland. So, too, in the case of the 
tailless Pedipalpi, although they only pass a short distance to the north 
of the Tropic of Cancer, yet they have been met with in Patagonia as 
far to the south as latitude 50°, where the mean annual temperature is 
only about 40° Fahrenheit, being about 55° in midsummer (January) 
and 34° in winter (July). 

Moreover, the structural differences that obtain between the species 
capable of withstanding for some months of every year the lowness of 
temperature expressed or implied in the above statements, and the 
species that inhabit tropical or, at all events, very much warmer climes, 
are often only of specific importance. For example, the Manchurian 
Pedipalp (belonging to the Thelyphonidae) is closely related to one 
that occurs at Hong Kong, to the south of the northern tropic ; the 
Patagonian tailless Pedipalp is congeneric with a form that is found in 
equatorial East Africa ; the Galeodcs of the Russian steppes is a near 
ally of a species that flourishes in the perennial heat of the deserts of 
South Arabia and Somaliland ; and the Alpine scorpion is similarly 
related to forms that exist in South Italy and Algeria. 

So, too, with regard to moisture. Although, broadly speaking, it is 
true that desert forms are not met with in forest-covered areas, never- 
theless genera of Solifugae, which abound in the arid plains of Arabia 
and North Africa, have representative species in parts of West Africa 
and India, where vegetation is luxuriant. Congeneric species of 
Amblypygous Pedipalpi occur in deforested tracts of South Arabia, and 
in Malabar and Ceylon, where the physical conditions are very 
different, and a species that has been found in caves in the Philippine 
Islands has been collected by Mr. Oates beneath stones on the sea- 
shore in the Andamans. Nearly allied species of Butheolus (scorpions) 
are met with in Sind, with an annual rainfall of about four inches, and 
at a place in Satara in the Dekhan, where the average fall is about 
thirty inches. And lastly, Professor Wood Mason's statement that 
species of whip-scorpions were only discovered in Assam during the 
heaviest rains and soon died^ when removed from their humid 
surroundings, should be compared with that of M. Schwarz to the effect 
that the Floridan species frequents dry and sandy spots. 

From these data it is evident that the Arachnida in question have 
very considerable powers of adaptation to varied physical conditions. 
Consequently their absence from certain areas of the earth's surface 
must not be too hastily explained away on the plea of unsuitability of 

Unfortunately our knowledge of the fossil forms of these animals 
is extremely scanty. Of the past history of the Solpugas we know 
absolutely nothing. Pedipalpi, referable both to the Uropygi and 
Amblypygi, have, however, been discovered in Carboniferous strata. 

2i6 R. 1. POCOCK [march 

The Uropygi were represented by the genus Geralinura, which 
apparently differed hut little from the existing Thelyphonidae, and has 
been found both in Europe (Bohemia) and in North America (Illinois). 
The fossil forms, which seem to me to be referable to the Amblypygi, 
have been named Graeophonus and Geraphrynus, 1 the former being 
based upon remains from the Carboniferous beds of Cape Breton in 
Nova Scotia, the latter from those of Illinois. But from Palaeozoic 
times down to our own day the past history of the Pedipalpi is an 
absolute blank. 2 Nor is our knowledge of fossil scorpions much more 
complete. Although several genera and species have been described 
from Upper Silurian and Carboniferous beds, both in North America 
and Europe, only one species has been recorded as existing during the 
immense period of time that has elapsed since the Palaeozoic epoch. 
This was obtained in the oligocene amber beds of the Baltic. 

Nevertheless, scanty as are these data, they afford support to the 
view that these Arachnida originated in, and were widely distributed 
throughout, the northern hemisphere. 

In attempting to establish geographical areas based upon a study 
of these Arachnids, one important consideration must be borne in mind, 
namely, that we are dealing with organisms which are wonderfully 
specialised in particular directions and highly conservative in 
structural characters. The scorpions, in fact, furnish a famous example 
of a persistent type of life, and in this particular they do not surpass 
the Pedipalpi of the family Thelyphonidae. Considering the wonderful 
changes that have affected the northern hemisphere since Palaeozoic 
times, it is astonishing that these Arachnids have varied so little. To 
many zoologists the characters upon which the orders are divided into 
families, genera, and species may seem of small importance as compared 
with those of such, highly plastic animals as the Mammalia; but 
keeping in view the fixity of their characters as a whole, it seems clear 
that what is regarded as a specific or generic difference between two 
forms may represent a period of separation sufficiently long or a change 
of environment sufficiently great to produce differences of far higher 
systematic value in more plastic organisms. Consequently a generic 

1 Described by Mr. Scudder. This is no place to attempt a detailed criticism of this 
author's work on fossil Arachnida. The expenditure of a little trouble in gaining an 
acquaintance with the morphology and classification of recent forms would have given his 
monograph a value to which at present it can lay no claim. "Without an examination of 
the fossils, one's criticisms are, more or less, guess-work, but, judging from the figures, it 
appears to me that Mr. Scudder has, in more than one instance, mistaken the ventral for the 
dorsal aspect of his specimens, has referred to the same species specimens presenting 
characters probably of generic importance, and has placed in the same order, Anthracomarti, 
representatives of the existing orders of Araneae, Opiliones, and Pedipalpi. The genus 
Graeophonus, which is almost certainly an Aniblypygous Pedipalp, he places in the family 
Geralinuridae, alongside of Geralinura, an unmistakable Uropygous form. 

2 The so-called Tertiary Phrynus from the Oligocene beds of Aix, cited in works on 
Palaeontology, and described ten years ago by Gourret as Phrynus marioni, is not a 
Phrynus (Pedipalp), as a glance at the figure will show, but a spider allied to the 
Carboniferous Arthrolycosa and the existing Liphisthis. 




difference between the species of two areas may, if desirable, be 
regarded as of sufficient value to warrant their separation as 
geographical regions. Similarly the occurrence of the same specific 
form in two adjacent islands, for example, does not necessarily imply 
that the separation of the two islands is of recent date. 

Distribution of the Uropygi. 

The tailed Pedipalps or Uropygi are divided into two sub- orders, the 
Oxopoei and the Tartarides. The latter is a group that is but little 

180 160 140 130 IOOL.n < »60.f'j- m 60 40 20 20 4$ SOLmgr 80~fU-a]QO 120 140 160 \ 180 | 

Map illustrating the geographical distribution of the Uropygons Pedipalps. 

known and comprises some very small degenerate forms that have been 
met with only in Burma, Ceylon, and Venezuela. No doubt they will 
be discovered elsewhere in the Tropics when adequate search has been 
made. There is, indeed, a dubious record of a species from Liberia in 
West Africa ; but until the group has been further investigated, it cannot 
be considered a very important factor in the study of zoo-geography. 
Two genera are recognised : Tripcltis, with a slender cylindrical telson, 
discovered in Ceylon and Burma, and Schizonotus, with an expanded, 
somewhat spatulate telson, in Ceylon and Venezuela. 1 

The existing forms of Oxopoei are referred to a single family, 
the Thelyphonidae, divisible into two sub-families, each represented 
by several genera, which are distributed over the south - eastern 

1 This genus has also been introduced into conservatories in Europe, in connection with 
exotic plants. 

218 R. I. POCOCK [march 

portions of Asia, from Ceylon and China to the Fiji Islands, and in the 
southern states of North America, Central America, the West Indies, 
and the tropical parts of South America. 

The first sub-family (Thelyphonini) contains the following genera : — 
Thclyphonus, composed of a large number of species, and occurring in 
Ceylon and South India, Burma, South Siam, and the Philippine 
Islands ; thence over the whole of the Indo-Malayan and the Austro- 
Malayan Islands to Fiji and the New Hebrides, just touching Cape 
York, but not extending further into Australia. Very closely allied 
are the genera Abalius and Tctrabalius, the former with representative 
species in New Guinea, New Britain, and Samoa, the latter occurring 
in Borneo and the Moluccas. Mimoscorpius, another allied form, con- 
tains a single species recorded from the Philippines. To the north of 
the area occupied by Thelyphonus occur two genera : Uroproctus, 
peculiar to Assam and the eastern parts of Bengal, and Typopcltis, 
which extends from Hong Kong and Formosa into Japan, and a little 
to the north of the 40th parallel of North latitude in Arnurland. In 
America the sub-family is represented by the single genera Mastigo- 
proctus, which has representatives in Arizona, Texas, Florida, Central 
America, Hayti, Martinique, and in Brazil, as far at all events to the 
south as Matto Grosso. The second sub-family (Hypoctonini) contains 
only three genera : Labochirus confined to Ceylon and South India ; 
Hypoctonus occurring in Silhet, Burma, and Borneo ; and Thclyphoncllus, 
which has been met with in Guiana and on the Amazons. 

This family shows but little structural differentiation. It is con- 
sequently difficult to formulate any definite conclusions respecting the 
geographical regions or sub-regions that may be recognised, on account 
of the close relationship that obtains between the genera that are found 
in the eastern and western hemispheres, the differences between them 
being no greater than those between the species of China and Assam, 
or Borneo and Java. 

For the area in South-Eastern Asia to which these animals are 
restricted, the term Oriental may be retained, although it is by no means 
identical with the region of that name defined by Wallace, inasmuch as 
it embraces part of his Manchurian sub-region of the Palaearctic, as well 
as the whole of the Austro-Malayan, and part of the Polynesian sub- 
region of the Australian Eegion. 

The sub-regions of this area are doubtful both in number and 
extent. The area, however, extending from Corea to Hong-Kong and 
characterised by the presence of Typopeltis and the absence of the more 
southern types may be recognised as the Manchurian ; and if we 
eliminate as the Assamese the area to which Uroproctus is restricted, 
and as the Ceylonese or Malabar, the part of South India and Ceylon 
where Labochirus is alone found, the rest of the region will correspond 
very closely to the Malayo-Papuan area so well characterised, as will 
be explained, by one of the families of Amblypygous Pedipalpi. 


lu the American continent the area inhabited by this family may 
be termed the Neotropical. The characteristic genus is Mastigoproctus, 
most nearly allied to the Assamese Uroproctus, and extending from the 
Southern States (California, Texas, and Florida), into the heart of 
Brazil and including the Greater Antilles. Up to the present time the 
genus Thelyphonellus is only known from the northern parts of South 
America. On this basis we may perhaps separate the region into two 
sub-regions, a Northern or Central American, and a Southern or 

Distribution of the Amblypygi. 

By certain structural characters which it is beyond the scope of the 
present paper to discuss, the Tailless Pedipalpi or Amblypygi may 
be divided into three families — the Admetidae, Charontidae, and 

The Admetidae are confined to America, where the family is repre- 
sented by three genera : Hetcrophrynus, with 3 or 4 species, is 
spread over the whole of the northern part of South America, including 
Colombia, Venezuela, Guiana, and in the valley of the Amazons as far 
as Para. Probably the genus spreads into the Brazilian forests, to the 
south of the Amazons ; but there are as yet no data to substantiate 
this belief. It is at all events absent from the Antilles. This archi- 
pelago is peopled by the genus Admetus which has been found in Cuba, 
Hayti, and the Bahamas, southwards to Barbadoes, thence to Trinidad, 
and over the whole of the area occupied by Hetcrophrynus in South 
America, and northwards through Central America into Texas and 
Lower California. The species, however, fall into three well-marked 
groups, which may perhaps be regarded as of generic value. The first 
of these, typified by A. fascimanus (mexicanus), spreads from Mexico, 
Cuba, and the Bahamas to Panama ; the second (A. whytei) is met with 
in Texas, Lower California, Mexico, and Nicaragua ; the third (A. 
palmatus) ranges from Cuba, through the Antilles into Guiana, 
Colombia, and North Brazil. The third genus which has been estab- 
lished, namely, Phrynopsis, is represented by one or two species met 
with in Mexico and California. 

The second family, the Charontidae, ranges from Southern Burma 
and the Andaman Islands over the whole of the Indo-Malaysian and 
Austro-Malaysian Islands as far as New Caledonia and Samoa. So far 
as is known the species are few in number, and each is the repre- 
sentative of a peculiar genus. Stygoj)hrynus and Catagaeus have been 
found at Moulmein in Burma. Charon extends from Java, Amboina, 
and the Philippine Islands through Papua to the Solomon Islands. 
Sarax has an equally wide distribution, and has been obtained in the 
Andaman Islands, Singapore, Borneo, the Philippine Islands, Papua, 
and New Britain. Charinus, the most easterly representative of the 
family, occurs in New Caledonia, the Fiji Islands, and Samoa. 




The third family, the Tarantuliclae, lias a far wider distribution 
than either of the preceding two. It spreads over the whole of Africa 
south of the Sahara, from Senegambia and Abyssinia to Cape Colony, 
along the south of Arabia from Aden to Muscat, from Bombay south- 
wards into Ceylon and turns up again in Siam, but, so far as is 
known, does not overlap the range of the Charontidae. Oddly enough, 
however, the group seems to be represented in South America, ac- 
cording to the independent testimony of two authors. Three genera 
are recognisable, namely Titanodamon, with two or three species, 
ranging from Senegambia to the Congo in West Africa ; Tarantula, 


Map illustrating the geographical distribution of the Amblypygous Pedipalps. 

with about four species, is spread over Eastern Africa from the 
Mozambique to Abyssinia, in South Arabia, India, Ceylon, and Siam ; 
Damon (Nanodamoii), with two, perhaps more, species occurring through- 
out East Africa from Cape Colony to Somaliland and South Arabia ; 
in South America, one species has been recorded by Perty from Brazil, 
another by Simon from Patagonia, a little farther south than the 50th 
parallel of South latitude, that is to say in about the same latitude 
as the Falkland Islands. 

From these data it appears evident that three geographical regions 
must be admitted for the Tailless Pedipalps. First the Neotropical, 
characterised by the Admetidae and one genus of the Tarantulidae, 
which, however, also occurs in East Africa. This region comprises part 
at all events of Lower California, of Texas, and probably Florida, the 


whole of Central America (with the possible exception of the Mexican 
plateau), the Bahamas, the West Indies, the tropical parts of South 
America, and even as far south as Patagonia. This region seems 
divisible into three sub-regions — the Central American, characterised 
by the genus Phrynopsis and the species of Admetus of the whytei and 
fuscimanus type, and by the absence of Heterophrynus and of the 
species of Admetus of the palmatus type. It comprises Central 
America with part of Lower California and of Texas. Secondly, a 
Brazilian sub-region containing all the countries of South America to 
the north of the Amazons, and especially characterised by the presence 
of Heterophrynus. Species of Admetus of the fuscimanus type invade 
the western side of this sub-region from Central America, and species 
of the palmatus type, abundant in the West Indies, are also spread 
throughout the area. Thirdly, an Antillean sub-region seems recog- 
nisable owing to the absence of Heterophrynus and Phrynopsis, the 
scarcity of species of Admetus of the whytei and fuscimanus types, 
and the presence of those of the palmatus type, which, although also 
occurring in the Brazilian sub-region, seem to be absent from Central 
America. To the south of the Brazilian sub-region, a Patagonian sub- 
region characterised by the absence of Admetidae and the presence of 
Damon, one of the Tarantulidae, may be recognised. This sub-region 
extends far to the south in Patagonia, but its northern limit is as yet 

The second region, easily recognisable, may be termed the Malayo- 
Papuan. It is characterised by the Charontidae, and extends, so far as 
is known, from Burma in the west to New Caledonia and Samoa in 
the east, including all the islands of the Indo- and Austro-Malayan 
areas, but not, so far as has been ascertained, any part of Australia 
or New Zealand. 

And lastly, there is in the Old World the area occupied by the 
Tarantulidae, comprising Africa south of the Sahara, South Arabia, 
India, Ceylon, and Siam. For this region the term Indo- African may 
be applied. The distribution of the genera of this family seems to 
warrant the recognition of two sub-regions — a western or African, 
characterised by the presence of the genera Titanodamon and Damon ; 
and an eastern or Indian, characterised by the almost complete absence 
of the last-named genera and the presence of the genus Tarantula. 
This sub-region will comprise South Arabia, India, Ceylon, and Siam. 
The extension of the genus Tarantula into East Africa and of Damon 
into Arabia forbids the ascription to these areas of a greater than sub- 
regional importance. 

Distribution of the Solifugae. 

The Order Solifugae is divisible into three families : — The Hexiso- 
podidae contains the single genus Hexisopus peculiar to South Africa. 




The Galeodidae also contains a single 


Galcodes, which 

has a wide range, extending from the steppes of Southern Eussia and 
Turkestan into Afghanistan, Persia, Baluchistan, India (as far as 
Madras and Bengal), all over Asia Minor, and even into Greece ; also 
throughout Arabia ; and in North Africa, from Egypt to Algeria along 
the north coast, and southwards through Nubia and Abyssinia into 
Somaliland. The third family, or Solpngidae, is far richer than the 
others in numbers, both of genera and species. The following genera 
are recognised : — Rhagodcs (Bhax), with a range equal in extent to that 
of Galcodes although it is not met with in Greece and Eussia, but extends 


on .McrcaUics Hujectiun. 

Htj Keith. Jtinittm liL Z £. 

ISO 160 140 120 lQOic^BwQQofUng.60 40 20 20 40 60Lo ni jE aQ^fU^jOO i2D 140 160 \ 180 

m Sonorar, Region- fSSSSSSU kunto I Rztion, ^■M^fcrrancanR^orv 

\Neotropica I Region. " "* it ' s | \ £tlitopir(nRe£ton 

Map illustrating the distribution of the Solifugae. 

in the Saharan region as far as Senegal, and has one reputed species 
from Ceylon ; Solpuga (Zeria), ranging throughout Africa from Algeria 
and Egypt to Cape Colony, but attaining its maximum development to 
the south of the Sahara ; Zeriassa, nearly allied to the preceding, and 
occurring in Masailand and Somaliland ; Ccroma, ranging from Masai- 
land to Cape Colony ; Biton, found in Syria, Egypt, Tunis, Arabia, and 
Nubia ; Blossia, in Lower Egypt and Aden ; Paracleobis, in Spain, Cape 
Verde, Somaliland, Socotra ; # Gylippus, in Syria ; * Gnosippus, in 
Egypt ; * Barrios, in Lower Egypt, and ^Gluvia, in Portugal ; * Dinorhax, 
in Siam and the Moluccas ; # Daesia, in Mexico ; Datames, in Colorado, 
Utah, Nevada, Arizona, Arkansas, Texas, and the Mexican plateau, and 

* The genera marked with an asterisk are unknown to me in nature, and I cannot 
speak with certainty as to their true taxonomic position. 


possibly Western Asia (the Caucasus) ; Cleobis, Guatemala, Jamaica, 
Cuba, Florida, St. Vincent, Colombia ; * Zerbina, Colombia ; Mummucia, 
Peru, Chili, and the Argentine. 

In the eastern hemisphere these Arachnida seem to be dis- 
tributed over three recognisable regions, the Indo - Mediterranean, 
the Ethiopian, and the Malayan. The Indo-Mediterranean contains 
Spain, Greece, and South Prussia ; the whole of North Africa north of 
a line running from Senegambia on the west to the desert part of 
Masailand and Somaliland on the east ; and in Asia, Asia Minor, 
Arabia, Persia, Turkestan, Baluchistan, and practically the whole of 
peninsular India as far to the south as Madras. This region, the 
richest in genera, is characterised by the occurrence of Galeodes, 
Rhagodes (Rhax), Biton, Blossia, Paracleobis, Gylippus, Gnosi/pptus, Barrus, 
and Gluvia. 

The Ethiopian region, including Africa south of Senegambia and 
Somaliland, is characterised by the absence of the genera mentioned 
above and by the presence of the genera Ceroma and Hcdsopus, which 
are peculiar, and by a host of species of Solpuga (including the nearly 
allied form Zeriassa), of which one or two extend into the North 
African part of the Mediterranean region. No Solifugae have been 
recorded in West Africa between the Congo and Sierra Leone ; but on 
the eastern side of the continent the Ethiopian fauna blends with that 
of the Mediterranean area, owing, presumably, to the northern and 
southern migration of representative genera, 

Apart from India, which, possibly with the north of Ceylon, forms 
part of the Mediterranean region, we know very little, except on the 
negative side, of the Solifugae of the Oriental region. The only genus 
that has been recorded is Dinorhax, with possibly two species, one in 
Annam and Cochin China and the other in the Moluccas. No doubt 
the genus will turn up elsewhere in the islands of Indo- and Austro- 
Malaya, and probably considerably farther to the north in the Chinese 
area ; and since all the types recorded elsewhere seem to be entirely 
absent, this area may be termed the Malayan, and be regarded as of 
regional importance. 

The species inhabiting America are distributed so as to admit of 
the recognition of two regions^-a northern or Sonoran, characterised 
by Datames, and probably Daesia, and comprising the Western and 
Southern States from California to Texas and part of Mexico ; and a 
southern or Neotropical, comprising Central America, with the possible 
exception of the Mexican plateau, the West Indies, and Florida and 
the Andean chain in South America as far as Chili and the Argentine, 
the representative genera being Cleobis, Zerbina, and Mummucia, all of 
which are apparently closely related. 

* The genera marked with an asterisk are unknown to me in nature, and I cannot 
speak with certainty as to their true taxonomic position. 

224 R- I. POCOCK [march 

General conclusions concerning the Distribution of the Scorpions, 

Pedipalpi, and Solifugae. 

The available evidence indicates that the Scorpions and Pedipalpi 
originated in early Palaeozoic times (the Solifugae perhaps later) in 
the northern hemisphere, and enjoyed a wide range throughout this 
portion of the globe, migrating from the eastern to the western side, 
or vice versa, by a land connection across what is now the North 
Pacific or North Atlantic, possibly by both routes. Their absence at 
the present day from the whole of the extensive areas that lie to the 
north of the 40th or 45th parallels of North latitude, is probably to 
be attributed to the refrigeration of the northern hemisphere during 
the glacial epoch. 

If this view of their northern origin be correct, these Arachnida 
must have migrated southwards into the southern lands they now 
inhabit ; but since their palaeontology furnishes no help in determining 
the dates of their migrations, it is necessary to appeal to the evidence 
supplied by the Vertebrata, and especially the Mammalia, with regard 
to the past history of the southern continents. 1 

It is considered probable that the ancestors of the existing Afro- 
Mascarene Mammals fauna entered the Ethiopian region some time during 
the Oligocene period, when Madagascar was united to South Africa ; that 
during Pliocene times Madagascar was separated from the mainland, 
and a more intimate union between Africa and Asia, by way of Syria 
or Arabia, admitted the more highly organised ancestors of the existing 
ungulates, monkeys, etc., which were thus cut off from Madagascar by 
the Mozambique channel. 

The fact that scorpions belonging to the Buthidae and Isclmuridae, 
allied to but distinct from the African species, occur in Madagascar, 
shows that, like the lemurs and the viverrines in the case of the 
Mammals, representatives of these families inhabited South Africa 
before the submergence of the land connecting it with Madagascar. 
Similarly, the absence from this island of the Amblypygous Pedipalpi, 
of the Solifugae, and of all the African genera of Buthidae and Scor- 
pionidae, points to the conclusion that these forms entered Africa after 
the separation of Madagascar. Thus, so far as these Arachnida are 
concerned, the scorpions were the pioneers in taking possession of 

There is no evidence against the hypothesis that these incursions 
synchronised with those of the Mammalia. On account of the very 
great antiquity of the scorpions, as compared with the Mammalia, it 
might be considered probable that the former anticipated the latter 
in their southward movement into Africa. But, it must be remem- 
bered, there is no evidence that scorpions of the kind found in the 

1 In this connection I have specially consulted Mr. Lydekker's "A Geographical 
History of Mammals. Cambridge, 1896." 


Carboniferous beds (Anthracoscorpii) survived that period, and none 
that the group of Neoscorpii, which comprises all recent forms, had 
come into existence at that time. Hence it is possible that the latter 
only date back to the earlier Secondary epoch. They may, in fact, 
be coeval with the Mammalia. If this be so, the similarity in 
distribution between the two classes is not a surprising fact. 

It is believed by Dr. Blanford that India was connected with 
South Africa, by way of the Seychelles and Madagascar, throughout 
Upper Cretaceous (perhaps during Eocene) times, and that the con- 
necting land was broken up into islands at an early date in the 
Tertiary period. This view is in accordance with the suggestion 
already made, that the scorpions took possession of the Afro-Mascarene 
continent during the Oligocene and Miocene epoch, that is to say, 
after the severance of Madagascar from South India. Otherwise there 
would be, one may suppose, a much greater resemblance than actually 
obtains between the scorpions of Indo-Ceylon and Madagascar. Clearly 
also the absence of Indian scorpions and of Amblypygous and Uro- 
pygous Pedipalps from Madagascar, and their presence in South India 
and Ceylon, shows that they entered these areas of the Oriental region 
after the submergence of the land uniting this region with the 
Mascarene portion of the Ethiopian ; in other words, not before, and 
probably after, the Eocene period. 

It is stated by Mr. Lydekker that during the Pliocene India and 
Africa were zoologically identical, the identity being due to the 
derivation of the mammalian population of the two countries from a 
common source, namely, the so-called Siwalik fauna of Lower Pliocene 
age, which has been traced from the frontiers of Baluchistan along the 
Himalayas into Burma, and for some distance to the north, south, and 
east of that country. Here, again, there appears to be no evidence 
against the supposition that the ancestors of the existing Indian, and 
most of the existing African, Scorpions and Pedipalps, also formed 
part of the Siwalik fauna. At all events, as a working hypothesis 
this may be assumed to be the case. 

If the Amblypygous Pedipalp of the genus Tarantula was widely 
distributed over the area occupied by the Siwalik fauna, its existence 
at the present day in Siani, India and Ceylon, Arabia, and East Africa 
becomes intelligible, because it appears certain that in Pliocene times 
there was a broad, and in part forest-covered, tract of land uniting 
Africa with South- Western Asia. Probably the scorpions of the genera 
lomachus and Archisometrus, both of which occur in India and East 
Africa, entered the latter area at the same time as Tarantula. 

So far as the genera just mentioned are concerned, the fauna of 
Africa and India are at the present time identical. The differences 
between the two that obtain in other respects appear to be explicable 
on the hypothesis that new forms have sprung up within two areas 
since the Pliocene epoch, and that others, like the scorpions of the 

16 NAT. SO. VOL. XIV. NO. 85. 

226 R. I. POCOCK [march 

genera Scorpiops, Chaerilus, and Isometrics, and the Pedipalps of the 
family Thelyplionidae never succeeded in reaching Africa. 

This Pliocene incursion into India took place before the separation 
of Ceylon. After the occurrence of this event India seems to have 
been invaded from the north-west, by way of the Punjab and Sind, by 
its existing genera of Solifugae (Galeodes and Rhagodes (Rkax) ), and by 
the scorpions of the genera Butheolus and Buthus. These forms occur 
in abundance in Persia, Arabia, and neighbouring countries, but are 
absent from Burma and Ceylon. 1 

The similarity between Indo-Ceylon and the Indo-Malaya, so far 
as scorpions and Thelyplionidae are concerned, proves either a more 
intimate union between the two than at present obtains, or a common 
source in the north, whence a simultaneous southward migration into 
the two areas took place. Since there is no evidence to be drawn from 
other sources in favour of the former supposition, the latter may be 
adopted as furnishing an explanation of the facts. In that case we 
may conceive that the common source was the Siwalik fauna, which; 
as has been explained, has left mammalian traces in Burma, China, and 
various parts of Indo-Malaya (Java, Sumatra, the Philippines). 

But whether this be so or not, the extension of the scorpions 
Hormurus, Isometrus, and Archisometrus, and of Pedipalp Thelyphonus 
right away from India and Burma, and of Amblypygous Pedipalps of 
the family Charontidae from Burma to Papuasia, or even North- 
Eastern Australia, shows that there was at that time no barrier to 
migration between Indo-Malaya and Austro-Malaya. In this respect 
the Arachnida offer a striking contrast to the Siwalik mammals, which 
for the most part did not cross " Wallace's line." 

Nevertheless from the absence of the Pedipalpi and Solifugae from 
Australia, it seems evident that this continent, with the exception, per- 
haps, of its north-eastern portion, was separated from the countries lying 
to the north of it at the time when the Arachnida in question entered 
Papuasia. Two of the typically Oriental genera of scorpions, namely, 
Isometrus and Archisometrus, are met with in Australia, it is true ; but 
with these exceptions, the scorpions of this area are strikingly different 
from those of the Oriental region. There is one peculiar genus of 
Buthidae, Isometroides ; a second peculiar genus is Cercoplionius, 
belonging to the Bothriuridae, a family elsewhere occurring 2 only in 
South America, where it has many genera and species. A third 
peculiar genus is Urodacus, the type of a special family or sub-family 
belonging to the same section of the Order as the Scorpionidae of India, 
Malaysia, and South Africa. 

1 One species of Rhagodes has been recorded from Ceylon ; but the accuracy of the 
locality appears to me to be doubtful. 

2 An example of this group has been recorded from Sumatra ; but since the specimen 
appears to be specifically identical with a form common in the Argentine, there can be 
little doubt that it was not taken in Sumatra. The opportunity of examining this species 
I owe to the courtesy of M. Simon. 


It is impossible to fix the date of the occupation of Australia by the 
ancestors of these peculiar forms ; but if the existing Pedipalp and 
Scorpion fauna of Indo- and Austro-Malayan spread over this archi- 
pelago in the Pliocene period, as has been supposed, it is clear that the 
ancestors of the Urodacidae must have entered Australia in pre-Pliocene 
times. Hence it is possible that their entry synchronised with that of 
the primitive marsupials, and this is believed by Mr Lydekker to have 
taken place in the Eocene epoch. This author further believes that 
the similarity between the existing Australian and the extinct 
Patagonian Dasyuridae (Marsupials) is to be explained on the 
hypothesis of a land connection in Tertiary times between Australia 
and South America. This hypothesis would also account for the 
occurrence in Australia of Ccvcoplionius, which belongs to a typically 
Neotropical family. 

In Palaeozoic times it appears that the Scorpion and Pedipalp 
fauna of North America and of Europe was practically identical, and, 
judging from the available evidence supplied by the extinct mammals 
and reptiles, it is permissible to suppose that the similarity extended 
throughout the Jurassic and Cretaceous epochs. Moreover, during the 
Tertiary period there must have existed between the eastern and 
western portion of the northern hemisphere a northern land connection, 
admitting a free interchange of the more northern representatives of 
the fauna, at all events during the prevalence of sub-tropical conditions. 
Nevertheless, even during the time when the northern union was com- 
pletest and the conditions of temperature most favourable for an inter- 
change of species, we should expect the fauna to become gradually 
more and more distinct in the eastern and western moieties of the 
northern hemisphere the farther to the south it extended. These 
differences would become still more marked with the stoppage of all 
intercommunication and the destruction of the northern forms with the 
advent of glacial conditions in late Tertiary times. It seems, in fact, 
unnecessary to look further afield for an explanation of the generic 
differences that distinguish the scorpions, whip-scorpions, and Solpugas 
of the Southern States of North America from the most northern repre- 
sentative of these groups in Europe and Asia. 

This leaves the question of the origin of the fauna of South 
America to be accounted for. 

It is held by geologists that South America was separated by sea from 
the southern portions of North America in the Jurassic and Cretaceous 
eras, and that the separation, which was probably continued through 
the Eocene, came to an end by the end of the Miocene. If, then, 
the ancestors of the existing Scorpions, Pedipalpi, and Solifugae 
entered South America from North America they must have done so 
either before the Jurassic epoch or during or after the Miocene. But 
it appears to me that the structural differences between the South 
American Arachnida and those of the rest of the world are not of 

228 £. I. POCOCK [march 

sufficient importance to warrant the belief that they have been 
isolated during the enormous length of time that has elapsed since the 
Jurassic epoch. The species of Thelyphonidae, Solifugae, and most of 
the scorpions, for example, are only generically different from their old 
world allies ; and, although the scorpions of the family Bothriuridae are, 
with the exception of the Australian genus Cercophonius, peculiar to the 
region, they are, in my opinion, merely a specialised group descended 
from the American members of the Vejovidae (Iuridae), a family 
which at the present time is represented by genera in the Mediter- 
ranean and Oriental regions, in California, Mexico, Bolivia, and Chili. 
It is mainly to the south of the area occupied by the Vejovidae in 
South America that the Bothriuridae occur in force, and their structure 
and distribution suggest that they became gradually differentiated as 
the Vejovidae spread southwards into South America. Fortunately 
the survival of the A r ejovidae has left a clue to the origin of the 

So, too, in the case of the tailless Pedipalpi of the family Admetidae, 
which are confined to the region. The structural peculiarities of the 
genera seem hardly important enough to justify the view that they 
have been isolated since the early portion of the Secondary epoch ; and 
the supposition that the eastern and western representatives of the 
Amblypygi were probably cut off from intercommunication with each 
other at an earlier date than were the scorpions, whip-scorpions, and 
Solifugae, is supported by the fact that at the present time they do not 
extend to the north of the Tropic of Cancer in the Old World, and 
scarcely surpass it in the New. This would lead to an earlier differen- 
tiation of the genera on the two sides of the Pacific, and the differences 
would go on increasing during the gradual refrigeration of the northern 
hemisphere, which culminated in the glacial period, when the Pedi- 
palps in question were probably exterminated as far south as a line 
represented by the northern tropic, and the northern ancestors of the 
Admetidae were blotted out. 

If, however, the view that the Neotropical scorpions, Pedipalpi, etc., 
did not enter South America in pre-Jurassic times be rejected, it still 
remains to be seen whether any other country than North America 
can be looked upon as the source that has supplied South America 
with its fauna. 

On palaeontological and geological grounds it is believed by Mr. 
Lydekker that the ancestors of the mammalian ungulate fauna of South 
America migrated from South Africa by means of a land connection in 
Tertiary times, a small contingent of marsupials crossing in the same 
way and during the same epoch from Australia. This migration of 
African and Australian forms took place before the northern irruption 
•of the higher mammals, such as cats, bears, llamas, etc., into South America 
in post-Miocene times ; and since, as is believed, the ancestors of the 
existing population of African eutherian mammals and of Australian 


marsupials entered their respective areas of distribution in Eocene 
times, the lands connecting these two continents with South America 
must, according to the hypothesis, have been in existence some time 
between the Eocene and the end of the Miocene periods. 

Apart, however, from dates, since land connections between the areas ■ 
in question are believed to have existed, it is necessary, when discussing 
the question of the origin of the Neotropical scorpion and Pedipalp 
fauna, to examine the evidence for or against the view that any elements 
of the fauna have been derived from Australia or South Africa. 

Since the Solifugae and the two groups of Pedipalpi with which 
we are dealing do not occur in Australia at the present time, and there 
is no reason to suppose they have existed there in the past, the 
question of the Australian origin of the Neotropical members of these 
orders need not be further discussed. But seeing that both 
Amblypygous and Uropygous Pedipalps extend in Polynesia as far as 
Samoa, it may be deemed possible that they passed into South 
America by a land connection in more northern latitudes. No justi- 
fication for this hypothesis, however, is supplied by the existiug fauna. 

With regard to the scorpions, the question of a trans-Pacific 
migration bears a different aspect. As already stated, the Australian 
genus Cercophonius belongs to the typically South American family 
Bothriuridae (Telegonidae). Hence Australia may have supplied South 
America with this portion of its fauna. But, ceteris paribus, the 
migration may equally well have taken place the other way, that is to 
say, from South America to Australia, and this view of the matter is 
supported by the richness of the Neotropical and the poverty of the 
Australian fauna in genera and species of this family. If this supposition 
be correct, and if the assumption already made, that the ancestors of the 
Neotropical Bothriuridae did not enter South America before the end 
of the Miocene be also correct, there must have been a land connection 
between the two countries, probably in Pliocene times. It seems 
evident, however, that New Zealand formed no part of this trans- 
oceanic continent. 

Turning now to Africa, it is clear that since the Thelyphonidae do 
not exist in that country, the Neotropical genera of the group cannot 
have come from there. The Neotropical Solifugae, too, are in no way 
closely related to the Ethiopian members of this Order, but to those of 
the Mediterranean region, and no special relationship is traceable between 
the African Amblypygous Pedipalpi of the family Tarantulidae and the 
Neotropical Admetidae. The scorpions, too, of the two regions are, on 
the whole, very distinct. There is, however, one genus of scorpions, 
Opisthacanthus, which at the present time is found only in tropical Africa, 
Madagascar, and South America, and one genus, Damon, of the family 
Tarantulidae, which occurs only in East Africa and South America. 

The occurrence of the genus Oiristhaccmthus in Madagascar as 
well as in South Africa, indicates that it entered Madagascar before the 

2 3 o R. I. POCOCK [march 

severance from Africa was effected, and, according to our hypothesis, 
this migration took place in Oligocene times. Hence, if a land con- 
nection between South Africa and South America existed at any time 
during or after the Oligocene, scorpions of this genus might have 
crossed from one continent to the other. That Africa and not South 
America was the original home of the genus is shown by the existence 
of many species in the former country and of many allied genera in 
the same and other areas of the Old World, while the single species 
that South America possesses is the only representative of the family 
found in the New World. 

The same line of argument might be adopted to explain the 
occurrence of the Pedipalp Damon in the Ethiopian and Neotropical 
regions, were it not that the genus is not known to inhabit Madagascar. 
Possibly it may in the future be found in this island, but if not, its 
absence, as already shown, will indicate that it entered or became 
evolved in South Africa after the formation of the Mozambique 
channel ; and since this event is believed to have taken place about the 
Plicoene period, and assuming the present distribution of Damon in 
South America and South Africa to be due to the existence of a southern 
land connection between the two continents it inhabits, it seems clear 
that the connecting bridge had not subsided, at all events, before the 
beginning of the Pliocene. 

The available evidence then seems to show that the Neotropical 
region owes the bulk of its fauna to North America, and that certain 
elements in it may have come from South Africa. Again, the evidence 
appears to me to be in favour of the hypothesis that it was peopled 
with the ancestors of its existing species of scorpions, Pedipalps, and 
Solpugas during the Tertiary epoch. 

The West Indies seem to have acquired their fauna from two 
sources. The Solifugae and Thelyphonidae probably came from Central 
America vid Cuba ; and a land connection between this island and 
Yucatan is believed to have existed in the Pliocene and probably in 
the Plistocene as well. Some of the scorpions and the species of 
Admetus of the fuscimanus type appear to have travelled by the same 
route ; while other scorpions and the species of Admetus of the pal- 
matus type seem to have entered the sub-region from the south vid 
Venezuela or Guiana. 

In a paper upon the geographical distribution of scorpions already 
referred to, I pointed out that the area of the earth's surface to 
which these animals are now restricted might be divided into the 
following regions : — 

1. Mediterranean, including South Europe, North Africa from 

Senegambia to Nubia, Arabia, Asia Minor, Persia, Afghan- 
istan, etc., and North-Eastern China. 

2. Ethiopian, including Africa south of Senegambia and Nubia, 

and Madagascar. 


3. Oriental, including India, Ceylon, Burma, and the countries 

and islands east and south-east of this point as far as 
" Wallace's line." 

4. Australian, including the Australasian islands east of "Wallace's 

line " and Australia. 

5. Sonoran, including the Southern States of North America south 

of about the 40th parallel and the central plateau of Mexico. 

6. Neotropical, including the rest of Central America, the West 

Indies and South America, nearly as far south as the 50 th 
parallel of latitude. 

Subsequent studies in the same group have not materially affected 
these conclusions. But the discovery that species of typically Arabian 
and Persian types extend as far as Grwalior in India will make it 
necessary to draw the line of demarcation between the Mediterranean 
and Oriental regions considerably to the east of the Indian frontier. 

The known facts connected with the distribution of the Solifugae 
and the Pedipalpi agree in the main with those that the scorpions 
supply. A notable exception is furnished by India, which, while 
clearly belonging to the Oriental region so far as scorpions and whip- 
scorpions (Uropygi) are concerned, forms part of the Mediterranean 
region in the case of the Solifugae, and of the Ethiopian in the case 
of the Amblypygi. Taking the four groups into consideration, how- 
ever, the balance of evidence is in favour of classifying it with the 
Oriental region. On the other hand, the Austro-Malayan Islands, 
which in the case of the scorpions were referred to the Australian 
region, belong, in the case of both Amblypygous and Uropygous Pedi- 
palpi, and also in the case of the Solifugae, if the record of Dinorhax 
from the Moluccas be correct, to the Oriental region without doubt : 
and since, even in the case of the scorpions, these islands are perhaps 
as much Oriental as Australian, the evidence points to their inclusion 
in the former region. 

One last word about the Sonoran region. The absence of any 
barrier between this region and the Neotropical makes its exact 
southern limit a matter of doubt, on account of the intermixture of 
the faunas of the two areas. The genera that may be regarded as 
characteristic of the region are Haclrurus, Vcjovis, Uroctonus, and 
Anuroctonus amongst the scorpions, and Datamcs amongst the Solifugae. 
These forms extend into Mexico, but are absent from the West Indies. 
But the region also contains species of Uropygous and Amblypygous 
Pedipalpi, scorpions of the genera Diplocentrus and Centrums, and prob- 
ably Solifugae of the genus Clcobis. Since, however, these genera extend 
far into the Neotropical region, and are met with in the West Indies, 
they must be regarded as Neotropical elements, which have pushed 
their way to the north since the final union between North and South 
America took place. 

Protoplasmic Currents and Vital Force. 

By Prof. A. L. Herrera. 

I have lately stated that some currents of granules may lead to the 
formation of a pseudopodium in my synthetic protoplasm observed 
under the microscope. 1 What occurs is an exact imitation of the 
natural phenomenon. The internal energy of the said currents 
expends itself in external movements. The fluid loaded with granula- 
tions strikes, as it were, a blow as it dashes against the endosarc, 
or the limiting membrane of the protoplasm, and pushes it outwards. 

But these currents play a more important part ; they induce, 
indeed, the following processes : — 

1st. Eenovation of the surfaces of contact between the oxidisable 
parts and the external oxygen. More effective elimination of carbon 
dioxide. 2 

2nd. Conveyance of the nutritive particles and residues. Nutrition 
of the masses of alveolar protoplasm, which fulfil the functions of 
glands, etc., according to principles of Yan't Hoff, Becquerel, 3 and 
Loeb. Circulation of the reserves and circulation in the zymoses. 

3rd. Deposition of certain materials and separation of some others 
according to their solubility, density, and so forth. Concentric forma- 
tions, incrustations, etc. 

The study of these internal currents is, one may say, the chief 
aim of physiology. They may be explained in terms of known 
physico-chemical causes rather than by an undiscovered and undis- 
coverable vital force. The causes are — 

A. Diffusion and osmotic currents. 

B. Heat. Oxidations. 

. C. Ingestion of the materials that support the phenomena of 
diffusion and oxidation. 
D. Partial vacua and changes of every kind in internal pressure, 
induced by evaporation, etc. 

1 Natural Science, August 1898 ; Bull. Soc. Zool. France, 1898, p. 119 ; American 
Naturalist, December 1898. 

2 See A. L. Herrera and D. Vergara Lope, "New Theory of Respiration." Congress at 
Moscow, 1898. 

3 Beccpierel, " Les forces electro-capillaires dans les phenoinenes de nutrition " Comptcs 
rcndus Acad. Sci. Paris, 15 fevrier 1875. 



The action of these causes may be tested by both the natural and 
the synthetic protoplasm. 

A. The use of gummy water is indispensable if one wishes to 
observe the circulation of protoplasm in the elements of trees, and the 
movements are generally dependent on the conditions of diffusion 
(cf. Biitschli's foams). 1 The currents of the artificial product vary in 
accordance with the diffusive power of the substances, the quantity of 
.liquid, and the presence of some large granulations. 

B. The rapidity of diffusion increases, within certain limits, with 
an elevation of temperature (Graham). The movements of the proto- 
plasm increase in rapidity between 10 and 22 degrees, becoming- 
slower beyond those limits, and stopping between 45 and 48 degrees. 

I have seen that at a suitably high temperature these currents 
present themselves even in very viscous liquids. It is evident that 
oxygen as well as the liberation of heat attendant on respiration are 
equally necessary to every being. 

C. The paralysis of artificial currents ceases completely with an 
addition of peptone or a new quantity of salts. 

D. This is an evident principle. It is enough to remember the 
facts concerning the circulation of sap and blood. The paralysis of 
internal currents stops life everywhere, decomposition coinciding with 
an absolute diminution of movement. 

The rapidity of the course of blood through the capillaries is 
identical with that of the currents of protoplasm, and varies likewise 
according to conditions, its result being the same — nutrition and life. 

A motionless peripheral layer of serum is observed similar to 
that apparent in the currents of pseudopodia. 

The difference between latent and oscillating life lies, in short, in 
the almost absolute or simply partial inhibition of the internal currents. 
Water, heat, and oxygen are required as in a physico-chemical 
phenomenon, and I have often suspended the currents in my proto- 
plasm by means of desiccation or refrigeration for months together. 
There is then another argument against my theory which regarded 
movements as a result of the discharges of carbon dioxide — a theory 
which has certainly been for me a source of fertile suggestion, though 
I have now given it up. 

The importance of a large quantity of water in internal currents 
is perfectly demonstrated. I have shown that dilution has a great 
influence on the rapidity of the granulations in my artificial protoplasm. 

Now, the gray substance contains more water than the substance 
in the cerebellum, and this has more than the white substance of the 
brain and medulla (E. Dubois). The neuroplasm has doubtless its 
currents, and the variations exhibited in their rapidity, as well as the 
shocks of their molecules and the waves produced, perchance, by the 
passage of the current from a conductor with a big calibre to a thinner 

1 See Milne-Edwanls, " Anatomie et physiologie comparee," tome v. p. 105. 

234 A. L. HERRERA [march 1899 

one, may result in certain nervous and continuous actions or sensa- 
tions, external stimuli provoking the vibrations, as I have studied in 
mercury. 1 On the other hand, Dubois says that anaesthetics produce 
the expulsion of internal water, and I have observed that exhalations of 
ether have the property of energetically repelling any thin layers of 
water (" On a Property of Ether," Mcmorias y Bevista Sociedad Alzate, 
1895-96, Nos. 5, 6, p. 33). This means that anaesthetics modify the 
rapidity of the currents or even succeed in completely preventing them. 

The action of alcohol on my artificial product is curious, there 
being a remarkable excitation of the movements followed by their 
absolute paralysis. 

In the sea-urchin egg, says Dubois, segmentation can be pre- 
vented by hindering hydration by the addition of salt at 2 per cent, 
to the sea water. When segmentation has already begun it stops in a 
strongly salted medium, but it pursues its course directly after some 
normal water is poured on it ; and, what appears more notable, it then 
continues with increased rapidity. I have observed analogous phenomena 
in my artificial protoplasm. 

In a word, the protoplasmic currents have a constructive or forma- 
tive action comparable to that wrought by rivers on the earth's surface. 

Contractile vacuoles can be explained by an augmentation of 
tension promoted by some endosmotic currents. The former may be 
imitated by alternatively stretching and relaxing a plate of gluten. 

Life ought not to be likened to a continuous chemical reaction, the 
mechanism of which remains involved in darkness and unexplained. 
Life is now to be defined as the result of the physico-chemical action 
of protoplasmic currents, the cause of such currents being diffusion, 
heat, and some other secondary factors. Death consists in an absolute 
suspension of the internal currents in general ; latent life is character- 
ised by the establishment of the said currents under the influence of 
oxygen, heat, and water, in a germ or organism having the structure 
and chemical elements necessary, and supplied with every nutriment 
required. Oscillating life is nothing more than an alternate contribu- 
tion and reassertion of the constructive internal currents, depending 
upon the variations of the external temperature. Every physico- 
chemical or mechanical action capable of affecting the rapidity, 
direction, and other characters of internal currents must have more or 
less influence on the phenomena hitherto considered as vital. 
Mexico, January 9, 1899. 

[It may be recalled that the artificial protoplasm to which the 
author so often refers is an emulsion of albuminoid, etc., made according 
to Eeinke's analysis of " Flowers of Tan." In expounding his conclusions 
Professor Herrera is at a disadvantage in writing in a foreign tongue ; 
and we may also note that he is also hindered in his researches by the 
lack of an adequately powerful microscope. — Ed. Nat. Sci,]. 

1 Natural Science, December 1898. 


The Shell of a Turtle. H. Gadow. " Orthogenetic Variation in the 
Shells of Chelonia," Proc. Cambridge Phil. Soc. x. 1899, pp. 35-37. The 
normal shield of the Loggerhead turtle (Thalassochelys caretta) possesses six 
median (including the so-called nuchal) and five pairs of costal scutes. Of a 
total of 56 specimens not less than 43 were abnormal, i.e. 76 - 6 per cent. Of 
41 newly-hatched specimens not less than 38 were abnormal, i.e. 92*7 per cent. 
The variations are manifold, the number of median scutes varying from 8 to 7 to 6, 
the costal scutes ranging from 7 to 6 to 5, and they are either symmetrical or 
uneven. Most of the individuals seem to grow out of these irregularities, 
which the author regards as "atavistic reminiscences," and the reduction or 
squeezing-out of the supernumerary scutes proceeds in a very regular way, 
suggestive of "orthogenesis," it seems. 

Poison or Centipedes. O. Duboscq. " Sur l'histogenese du venin de la 
scolopendre," Arch. zool. exper. vi. 1898 (Notes et Kevue) pp. xlix-li. Part of 
the poison is formed in the nuclei of the glandular cells at the expense of the 
chromatin, a histological result which agrees with the chemical one that certain 
active components of poisons are nucleo-albumins. 

Secretion of Poison in the Adder. W. Lindemann. " Ueber die 
Secretionserscheinungen der Giftdriise der Kreuzotter," Archiv mikr. Anat. 
liii. 1898, pp. 313-321, 1 pi. The process of venom-secretion is closely 
analogous to that in an ordinary salivary gland. Homogeneous drops appear 
in the cell-substance which becomes clearer. The periphery becomes darker 
as the drops are discharged. 

Castrating Caterpillars. J. Th. Oudemans. " Falter aus castrirten 
Raupen, wie sie aussehen und wie sie benehmen," Zool. Jahrb. xii. 1898, pp. 
71-88, 3 pis. 2 figs. The experimenter has not only shown that it is possible 
to castrate caterpillars, which is surprising enough, but that the process has no 
effect on the external appearance of -the adults as regards secondary sex char- 
acters, which is even more surprising. Even the habits were little affected, 
thus copulation occurred though there were no spermatozoa. The organism is 
indeed a unity, and more than a correlated congeries of parts ! 

Inoculation for Tick Fever. C. J. Pound. " Note on Tick Fever in 
Cattle," Jonrn. QuekettMicr. Soc. vii. 1898, pp. 118, 119. The author claims 
to have worked out protective inoculation for tick fever. Some thousands of 
cattle have been inoculated, and the results have proved highly satisfactory, for 
when such cattle were subjected to gross tick infection, or injected with virulent 
blood, they remained perfectly immune. But no statistics are given in the 
brief paper. 

Hairs of Monotremes. Baldwin Spencer and Georgina Sweet. " The 
Structure and Development of the Hairs of Monotremes and Marsupials, Part I. 

2 35 

236 FRESH FACTS [march 1899 

Monotremes," Quart. Journ. Micr. Sci. xli. 1899, pp. 549-588, 3 pis. and 6 
figs. In all essential respects the development of the hairs in Monotremes is 
precisely similar to that of other mammals ; the early development of the 
follicle is in the form of a solid epidermic downgrowth, not tubular to start 
with as Poulton described it. 

A Parasite op the Brain. Albert W. Brown. " On Tetracotyh petro- 
myzontis, a Parasite of the Brain of Ammocoetes," Quart. Journ. Micr. Sci. 
xli. 1899, pp. 489-498, 1 pi. The existence of so highly organised a form as a 
Trematode in the brain cavity of a vertebrate is a unique phenomenon in many 
ways, and this must commend Tetracotyle petromyzontis to the interest of 
naturalists. It is, the author says, almost incredible that any vertebrate could 
live on, apparently without discomfort, whilst its brain is packed with hundreds 
of flukes. But this is the case. 

More Experimental Embryology. Henry E. Crampton, Jr. "The 
Ascidian Half-Embyro," Ann. New York Acad. Sci. x. 1898, pp. 50-57, 
2 pis. An isolated blastomere of Molgula manhattensis segments as if still 
forming a corresponding part of an entire embryo. The cleavage phenomena 
are strictly partial ; the result is a larva of less than normal size, and with 
defects in certain of its systems. Mr. Crampton's results confirm the view of 
Roux, that the development begins as a partial one, but that the missing part 
is gradually supplied by the cells already present, so that the partial nature of 
the development is progressively masked, and the end is a nearly complete 

Intercellular Bridges. Hermann Klaatsch. " Die Intercellular- 
structuren an der Keimblase des Amphioxus," SB. ATcad. Wiss. Berlin, 1898, 
pp. 800-806, 4 figs. There is a well-developed system of intercellular connec- 
tions persistent to the end of the gastrulation process, if not longer. Ectodermic 
cells are connected, and endodermic cells are connected, but there is no connec- 
tion between ectoderm and endoderm except at the transitional zone. 

New Case op Parental Care in Frogs. August Brauer. " Ein neuer 
Fall von Brutpflege bei Froschen," Zool. Jahrb. xii. 1898, pp. 89-94, 3 figs. 
Dr. Brauer found in the Seychelles a small frog (Arthroleptis seychellensis) which 
bore on its (his 1) back nine tadpoles fixed by their ventral surface. 

Two New British Mammals. — At a meeting of the Zoological Society of 
London on February 7, Mr. G. E. H. Barrett-Hamilton, F.Z.S., read a paper 
on the Mice of St. Kilda, of which he recognised two species — Mus hirtensis 
sp. nov., a representative of M. sylvaticus, and M. muralis sp. nov., representing 
M. musculus. Both of these species showed good distinctive characters from 
their well-known prototypes. 



Catalogue of the Lepidoptera Phalaenae in the British Museum, Vol. I. 
Catalogue of the Syntomidae in the Collection of the British Museum. 
By Sir George F. Hampson, Bart. Svo, pp. xxi + 559, with 285 
illustrations in text, and accompanying volume of 1 7 plates with coloured 
figures. London: Printed by order of the Trustees, 1898. 

The first volume of this series, the circular relating to which is given in 
Natural Science, vol. xii. 5, is now issued, and will be received with interest by 
lepidopterists generally. The volume is accompanied by a preface from the 
Director of the British Museum (Natural History), by a systematic index of 
the species included, and an introduction of 20 pages from the author. In this 
introduction the general classification and phylogeny is categorically laid down, 
and the structure of the Lepidoptera is discussed in a series of brief paragraphs, 
of which those relating to the ovum, larva, and pupa have been revised by Dr. 
Chapman and Dr. Dyar. The classification is mainly based upon an interpreta- 
tion of the neuration. The primary division of Comstock is adopted, and the 
Micropterygides and Hepialides are opposed to the rest of the moths, because 
of the 12-veined secondaries, i.e. the radius has the same number of branches 
as on primary wings. More recently Crinopteryx familiella has been studied 
by Spuler and Hofmann. This Tineid represents the final stage in the loss of 
radial branches, so that a passage is effected between the groups, and the 
character is vitiated. An ambitious key to the families is given on page 17, in 
which no use is made of the anal vein of primaries in the Papilionides, while 
the Satyrids are separated from the Nymphalids by the dilated vein 12. But 
this vein is dilated in Potamis iris (Nymphalidae), and the dilations are reduced 
in Agapetes and Oeneis (Satyridae). The more important part of the volume is 
taken up by the description of the 1184 species of Syntomidae. Purists may 
write Syntomididae ; others, believing the Tentamen edited, and Glaucopis 
being pre-occupied, may prefer Sphecomorphidae, while the Americans use 
Euchromiadae. The family, from observations on all stages, contains specialised 
Arctians, the limits of the two groups being obscure. The descriptions, both 
generic and specific, are concise yet sufficient, but the opportunity of considering 
the male genitalia has been neglected, which may possibly lead some to regard 
the work as " superficial." The synonymy often lacks the necessary reference 
to the author of the combined term adopted, thus breaking the historical 
sequence (e.g. Ctenucka virginica). This fault seems to have been copied, with 
the citations, from Kirby's catalogue. On page 361 Burtia is dated "1867," 
on the succeeding page " 1866," as by Kirby. Burtia was published with 
figure and should have precedence as noted by Moeschler (Lep. Porto Rico, 
349), who, however, misplaces the synonym Gundlachia. Horama difissa, 
correctly dated by Kirby, is post-dated, with its synonym, by 20 years. The 
intention is to include all species agreeing with the family definition. The 

2 37 

238 SOME NEW BOOKS [march 

figures in the text are recognisable and will be helpful ; the coloured figures in 
the volume of plates merit praise. On Plate X. Fig. 3, not 2, seems to re- 
present Pseudomya splendens ; such errors are regrettable. The work bears 
the mark of industry, and can be said to be successfully accomplished, so that 
the expectation held out in the preface, that it will be of value to the systematic 
zoologist, may be considered as realised. A. Badcliffe Grote. 


The Philippine Islands and their People. By Dean C. Worcester. 
Roy. 8vo, pp. xx. + 529. London: Macmillan and Company, 1898. 
Price 15s. net. 

Professor Worcester first visited the Philippines in 1887, as a member of 
Dr. Steere's zoological expedition to that group. He remained upwards of a 
year, and returned in 1890 for a period of nearly three years. He visited all 
the important islands, remaining in each long enough to form a fairly repre- 
sentative collection of its birds and mammals. In the present work he does not 
attempt so much to present an account of his zoological work as to draw a picture 
of life in the Philippines, and of the condition both of the settled districts and 
of those occupied by various uncivilised tribes. To the latter, many of whom 
are practically unknown to ethnologists, Professor Worcester devoted consider- 
able attention, and has made valuable observations on their customs and beliefs. 
Without setting himself to criticise the Spanish administration, he makes it 
fairly clear that he did not find it ideally perfect in its relation to individuals, 
or enlightened in its dealings with the economic development of the islands. 
At the present moment, when these are on the point of passing into American 
hands, it is important to note that so good an authority expresses the opinion 
that it is very doubtful if many successive generations of European or American 
children could be reared in the Philippines. The climate is exceedingly un- 
favourable to severe and long-continued physical exertion, such as would be 
necessary to develop the resources of the islands. An important appendix deals 
exhaustively with these. The soil is of almost inexhaustible richness, and 
cacao, coffee, guttapercha, Manila-hemp, bamboo, maize, rice, sugar, tobacco, are 
among the plants of economic importance. The indigenous mammals are some- 
what scanty, but many domesticated ones have been introduced. The large 
European and Australian horses, however, do not stand the climate. Nearly 
six hundred species of birds are known, including many rare and beautiful ones. 
Snakes are numerous, and locusts appear every few years. The most destructive 
insect pest is a larva which bores the stems of coffee bushes, often destroying- 
whole plantations. Numerous species of fish are found, including a curious 
fresh-water species which appears annually in the flooded rice fields, vanish- 
ing in a mysterious way as the fields dry up. The book is well illustrated, 
and contains a reproduction of an interesting old map of 1744 and a miserable 
modern one. A. J. H. 


Instinct and Reason : An Essay concerning the Relation of Instinct to 
Reason, with some special Study of the Nature of Religion. By Henry 
Rutgers Marshall, M.A. 8vo. New York : The Macmillan Co., 
1898. Price 12s. 6d. net. 

Mr. Rutgers Marshall is known to psychologists as the author of a work on 
" Pain, Pleasure, and Aesthetics." He there puts forth certain views on instinct 
and its relation to impulse ; and these are elaborated and extended in the work 
before us. His main thesis is that the ethical and religious instincts, of pro- 
found importance to the human race, have been rendered innate and hereditary 


in consequence of their biological value to the members of a social community. 
There is much that is interesting in his new book ; but many of the positions 
occupied require more weight of fact and more cogency of argument to render 
them tenable. 

Instinct, as defined by Mr. Marshall, includes not only reflex action but, it 
seems, cellular response to stimulus. For we are told that all instincts, whether 
simple or complex, fall under one category, and appear as modes of that simplest 
of all forms of activity, the reaction of a living cell to the stimulus received 
from the environment. On the other hand, instinct is taken to include all that 
is the outcome of innate tendencies. Not only are the ethical, artistic, and 
religious " instincts " comprised within the definition, but reason itself. At any 
rate, the "important conclusion " is emphasised that "all of reasoned action 
must be referred back to instinct action." On these principles it is difficult to 
see what types of organic action, animal or vegetable, must not be referred to 
instinct. It is questionable whether a technical term of such wide meaning has 
any definite value. 

' The term "impulse" is applied to "mental phases which, when we take an 
objective view, we find to be determined by the inhibition of instinct actions." 
But the word " obstruction " is sometimes used as the equivalent of inhibition. 
The former word has a much wider meaning than inhibition used as a technical 
term. It is not clear whether Mr. Marshall's contention is that impulse is 
always determined by the inhibitory influence of higher on lower nerve centres, 
or something else. 

If we accept the extravagantly broad definition of instinct as comprising 
rational action, it is clear that the distinction between hereditary and acquired 
modes of procedure is a superficial one. Mr. Marshall does, however, take it to 
some extent into consideration. But he seems too readily to accept as hereditary 
much that may be handed on by tradition. 

The last criticism for which we have space is this. It satisfies Mr. Marshall 
to assume, that if this or that mode of activity is of what he terms biological 
value to the race, it has been or is being engrained through heredity. Whether 
he accepts the inheritance of acquired characters is not clear ; but he lays some 
stress on the distinctively Darwinian factor in evolution. He nowhere, however, 
adequately sets forth the steps of the process by which those who fail to possess, 
say, the religious " instinct " are eliminated. C. LI. M. 



White Cattle : an Enquiry into their Origin and History. By R. H. 
Wallace. Trans. Nat. Hist. Soc, Glasgow, (2) vol. v. pp. 220-273, 

If the object of this communication were simply to demonstrate that 
British Park White Cattle are not the direct survivors of the wild aurochs 
or ox (not the bison), Mr. Wallace might have saved himself the trouble of 
writing it, since all competent to give an opinion are agreed on this point. But 
his main contention seems to be to demonstrate their descent from a white breed 
imported by the Romans. In this view he follows the steps of Professor 
M'Kenny Hughes ; and it is far from our intention to endeavour to demonstrate 
either that he is right or wrong, for the sufficient reason that, in our opinion, 
the evidence is inadequate. All that we propose in the way of criticism is to 
call attention to what appears to us a misapprehension. 

In his summary the author states that the cattle common in Britain was 
the Celtic shorthorn, the so-called Bos longifrons. This animal is stated to have 
been small and dark coloured. At the time in question the aurochs (Bos primi- 
genius) had become exterminated in Britain ; while the Celtic shorthorn was 
domesticated. The Romans had a special breed of white cattle for sacrificial 
purposes ; and such cattle were brought into Britain. It is from these cattle 

2 4 o SOME NE W BOOKS [march 

that the British Park breeds are derived — perhaps with some amount of 

Such appears to be, very briefly, the author's argument. Putting entirely 
on one side the question of the particular domestic breed from which the park 
cattle are descended, we at once proceed to our criticism. This is based on our 
belief that the author does not know what he means by a species. He says l 
that "our common cattle, Bos taurus, is no doubt a mixed product of extremely 
numerous and very diverse factors, developed in widely-separated regions. 
This animal ivhen wild was probably hunted by man, but, tamed, it has accom- 
panied him in all his wanderings. Its geological history in Britain, according 
to Owen, is first a large species of ox, Bos antiquus, followed by a somewhat 
smaller but still stupendous wild ox, Bos pjrimigenius, succeeded in turn by an 
aboriginal British ox of much smaller stature with short horns, Bos longifrons." 
Later on, p. 245, he observes : " Practically we can entirely ignore Bos primi- 
genius as a factor in the history of early British cattle, especially of white 

Now the greater part of the above appears to us pure nonsense. What, for 
instance, does the author mean by saying that our domestic cattle had a very 
complex origin, and then that it once occurred wild ? Are different species of 
wild animals in the habit of producing a mixed breed for the special benefit of 
man, that he may capture and tame it 1 

As a matter of fact, there are only two possible origins for European 
domestic cattle (as the bison and buffalo may be put aside), namely, the aurochs 
and the extinct Narbada ox of India. And there is little doubt that the honour 
of parentage belongs to the former. As to the Celtic shorthorn there is no 
evidence that it was ever a wild auimal. Moreover, as it is not specifically 
separable from Bos taurus (typified by the domestic ox of Europe, which is also 
the type of its genus), and never having been wild, it cannot claim to be termed 
a sub-species or race. Neither is there any possibility of specifically distin- 
guishing the Plistocene aurochs from the aurochs of the Middle Ages ; although 
as this was a true wild animal it is entitled to rank as a sub-species, Bos taurus 
primigenius. That this Bos taurus primigenius was the proximate ancestor of 
the Celtic shorthorn, and hence the ultimate ancestor of all European breeds, is, 
we submit, beyond doubt, unless indeed the aforesaid shorthorn fell from the 
stars or was separately created ! In place, therefore, of the so-called Bos primi- 
genius having nothing to do with the origin of domestic cattle, Ave believe it 
has everything to do therewith. To look to the Indian humped ox as the 
ancestor of some at least of our domestic breeds does not help matters. 
Ordinary and humped cattle (although they will readily cross), differ by their 
form, voice, and habits ; and, although some crossing may possibly have 
occurred in certain districts, there is not a tittle of evidence in favour of this 
origin, while there is everything against it. If such were the origin, Bos indicus 
would, of course, have to be sunk in the earlier title Bos taurus. 

One word more and we have done. On page 222 it is stated that Mr. 
Lydekker favours the view of the origin of British park cattle from white 
Roman cattle. Now we have a fairly good acquaintance with the somewhat 
discursive writings of that gentleman, but have failed to find in any of them bearing 
his name authority for such a statement. 


Studien fiber Saugethiere. By Dr. Max Weber, Professor of Zoology in 
the University of Amsterdam. Part II. 8vo, pp. 132, with 4 plates 
and 58 text figures. Jena: Gustav Fischer, 1898. Price 12 marks. 

This book follows its first part after an interval of ten years, but even that 
length of time does not seem too great for the preparation of the mass of infor- 

1 The italics are ours. 


mation which it contains, although the author explains that he issued the book 
on the eve of assuming the leadership of a Netherlands Deep Sea Expedition to 
the Indian Archipelago. 

With the exception of a few pages the work is devoted to a study of the 
descent of the testicles of mammals, for which the mere collection of the neces- 
sary material could not have been accomplished without the exercise of much 

At the outset, Dr. Weber gives an admirable summary and criticism of the 
diverse structures which different writers have included under the term 
" gubernaculum," and suggests that this word should be allowed to fall into 
disuse, since "es hoffnungslos ist, das Wort Gubernaculum zu gebrauchen, ohne 
dass es Anlass zu Missverstandnissen giebt." He prefers to use terms which 
have a precise significance, such as ligamentum testis, ligamentum inguinale 
(lig. rotundum), conus inguinalis, cremaster sac, etc. 

Details are given of dissections of animals representative of all the 
mammalian orders, followed by chapters, on the position of the testis, the 
position of the vasa deferentia, the ligamentum inguinale, and the chorda 

In a very interesting table the author distinguishes between (1) mammals 
whose testes lie at least temporarily external to the true abdominal cavity, and 
(2) those whose testes remain permanently within the abdominal cavity. To 
this latter group he applies the name " Testiconda," and again subdivides it 
into (a) those in which the inguinal canal and the ligamentum inguinale are 
wanting — True Testiconda — and (b) those in which the inguinal canal is 
obliterated to different degrees, and the ligamentum inguinale at the most is 
still present in rudiment — False Testiconda. 

In discussing these conditions Dr. Weber considers that the true testicond 
mammals acquired the characteristic at a time when the descensus was still in 
process of evolution, and as yet only a slightly stereotyped arrangement. 
Among the Marsupials and the majority of Monodelphia this new arrangement 
improved more and more, the different stages being still existent among recent 
mammals ; while Testiconda became the stereotyped arrangement with isolated 
ones, others (Cetacea, Dasypodidae) lost the descensus which had already 
reached completion, and thereby became Testiconda secondarily. From this 
point of view true Testiconda ought to be regarded as a return to the primitive 
condition, not as a return to embryonic conditions, although it must be granted 
that the embryonic condition is a reiteration of the primitive. 

The remainder of the book is taken up with three interesting papers on the 
elephant, in which the construction of its feet, the peripheral organ of smell, 
and its brain are respectively dealt with. D. H. 


Biological Lectures, delivered at the "'Marine Biological Laboratory of Wood's 
Holl, 1896-97. 8vo, pp. 242, with figures. Boston: Ginn and Co., 
1898. Price 8s. 6d. 

A Course of Lectures whose aim is merely defined as being the free discus- 
sion of " unsettled questions " in Biology, must necessarily, we suppose, allow 
to individual lecturers considerable freedom of choice. Certainly the eleven 
lectures contained in the present volume range over a large number of subjects, 
and treat these from very different standpoints. From the literary point of 
view two papers are especially noticeable — one by Prof. C. O. Whitman on 
"Some of the Functions and Features of a Biological Station," and the other 
on " The Methods of Palaeontological Inquiry," by Prof. W. B. Scott. Prof. 
Whitman's paper is a charming discussion of the ideal biological station, which 
incidentally involves scathing criticism of modern methods, and ends in the 

17 HAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 85. 

242 SOME NE W BOOKS [march 

building of a fair palace, with lakes and aquaria, experimental gardens and well- 
equipped laboratories, where the over-specialised worker may once more get 
into touch with nature. Prof. Scott devotes himself to a description of the 
methods employed in modern palaeontological research, taking as an example 
the fossils of the White River beds. These are traced from the moment of 
their exhumation to the final setting up of the restored skeleton. The paper is 
illustrated by photographs, some of which are, unfortunately, somewhat spoiled 
in reproduction, and is an admirable example of what a popular lecture should 
be — and so rarely is. 

The other papers in the volume are of a more technical nature, and in most 
cases display little attempt at literary effect. Mr. Hermon C. Bumpus has an 
interesting paper on the variations of Passer* domesticus, the introduced sparrow. 
A comparison of 868 American, and the same number of English eggs, showed 
that the American eggs were much more variable both in colour and in shape 
than the English, and further, that the mean shape of the American eggs is 
different from that of the English eggs. The result is interesting, but we wish 
that Mr. Bumpus had stated the localities from which the eggs were obtained ; 
the American area is obviously somewhat larger than the British area, and this 
introduces a possible source of error. Another interesting, though speculative, 
paper by Dr. Arnold Graf on the physiology of excretion is an attempt to ex- 
plain the phenomena of excretion in leeches on " mechanical " grounds. Two 
papers on the centrosome, by Miss Foot and Mr. A. D. Mead respectively, are 
of interest because their authors both reject Boveri's hypothesis of the great 
importance of the centrosome in cell-division. An elaborate paper by Dr. 
Conklin on " Cleavage and Differentiation " is marred by the obscurity of the 
style and want of care in arrangement. The remaining four papers are devoted 
to a variety of subjects. 

As a whole, in spite of much that is good, we confess to finding the volume 
a disappointment. There is no index, in most cases not even connected lists of 
references, and the absence of an editor is often painfully apparent. Many of 
the lecturers seem to us to show lack of discretion both in their choice of sub- 
jects and in their treatment of them under the given circumstances. Finally, 
the very miscellaneous nature of the contents produces a somewhat painful 
effect, slightly suggestive of Dr. Blimber's establishment. N. 


Colour in Nature. A Study in Biology. By Miss Marion I. Newbigin, 
D.Sc. 8vo, pp. xii. + 344. London: John Murray, 1898. Price 6s. 

Miss Newbigin has performed a useful piece of work in placing before us 
a book upon colour in nature which abounds in fact and is not dominated and 
rendered ineffectual by theory. Out of fifteen chapters only one, the last, is 
devoted to theory ; and that seems to us to be an exceedingly reasonable 
proportion. There is perhaps no department of biology in which so extra- 
ordinary a disproportion between fact and theory obtains as in that relating to 
the colours of animals. To give an example, even the first year's student at a 
medical school has some notion of the complex structure of the visual organs of 
the insect and crustacean tribe, and the difference from the analogous organs of 
the vertebrates. His teacher, if he be a wise person, declines to call the former 
"eyes": he prefers to term them "visual organs," not in the least on the 
principle of the journalist who writes of "vehicular traffic," and "the devour- 
ing element," but simply because he will not prejudge the question of their 
correspondence with what have been always called eyes, that is, the eyes of 
vertebrated animals. Yet the reader of any book or article upon colours in 
animals and plants is requested to believe — or rather it is assumed without 
any request at all that he does believe — that the physiology of the insect eye 


and the visual judgments in the " brain " of an insect are precisely similar to 
those, not merely of a man, but of an educated man accustomed to observe 
accurately and reason. A person really competent to theorise upon such 
matters would have to be — as John Evelyn described Edward the Sixth— 
" stupendously knowing." The real fact of the matter is, that Miss Newbigin 
is perfectly right in pointing out that we do not yet know enough of the 
plainest phenomena of animal coloration. "We cannot," she justly observes, 
" end a book on colour more fitly than by an appeal for more facts." The 
authoress herself deals with the main pigments and the physical causes of 
colour in the animal world. The book is a valuable epitome of such facts, and 
will doubtless be read by both students and the general public. F. E. B. 


Kalender fur Geologen, Pakiontologen und Mineralogen. Herausgegeben 
von Dr. K. Keilhack. Leipzig: Max Weg, 1899. Price 3 Marks. 

The second edition of this compact and useful pocket-book is an improve- 
ment on its predecessor, and should prove a valuable companion to every active 
or professional geologist. It contains the following sections : I. The Govern- 
ment Geological Surveys of the world. Every country in Europe has a survey 
except Greece, Turkey, Servia, Bulgaria, Montenegro, and Holland ; in Asia, 
only India and Japan have one ; in Africa, only Egypt, Cape of Good Hope, 
and the Transvaal ; in South America, only Brazil ; in North America, Mexico 
should have been mentioned, but is not ; in Australia, New Zealand is included, 
but the active survey of Queensland is omitted. II. List of teachers of the 
geological sciences in the colleges of the world. III. Geological, mineralogical, 
and palaeontological societies. IV. Addresses of the geologists, mineralogists, 
and palaeontologists of Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, and 
Hungary. There have also crept into the list a few people in other places, 
such as London, La Plata, St. Petersburg, and Guatemala. V. The public and 
private geological, mineralogical, and palaeontological collections of the same 
countries. VI. Comparative lists of geological formations. This is very 
incomplete, being confined to Europe, and dealing with that in a partial 
manner. At least one would expect to find the classical divisions of the 
British Silurian. VII. Synoptic table of igneous rocks. VIII. The chief 
characters of the more common minerals. IX. Symbols for crystal faces, 
according to Naumann, Weiss, and Miller. X. Atomic weights of the 
elements. XL History of the names of the chief formations, by J. Walther. 
XII. Rules for the application of proper names in systematic nomenclature, by 
H. Potonie. We have no patience with a person who says that the genitive of 
" Martius " should be " Martiusii." But in this branch of learning the best 
way of avoiding puerilities is never to use personal names at all. XIII. Short 
account of the annual gatherings of the German Geological Society, the 
Oberrhein Geological Society, and the International Congress. XIV. A list, 
very incomplete, of geologists, mineralogists, and palaeontologists dead since 
October 1, 1897. XV. Chief measures of length reduced to the metric scale. 
XVI. Chart of magnetic declination in Europe during 1899. XVII. List of 
periodicals containing geological papers. XVIII. The geological, palaeonto- 
logical, and mineralogical literature of 1898 down to the end of November. 
This, though it contains over 900 titles, and is much to be grateful for, is by no 
means complete. 

There are the usual diary, blank pages, and section paper, as well as a 
portrait of the late C. W. von Guembel. Considering the great difficulty of 
attaining accuracy in a work of this kind, we may well compliment the editor 
and publisher on what they have done for us. B. 

244 SOME NEW BOOKS [march 


Bush Fruits. A Horticultural Monograph of Raspberries, Blackberries, 
Dewberries, Currants, Gooseberries, and other Shrub-like Fruits. By 
Frederick W. Card, Professor of Horticulture, Rhode Island College of 
Agriculture, etc. 8vo, pp. xii. + 537, with 113 figures. London and 
New York : Macmillan and Co., 1898. Price 5s. 

The scientific cultivation of fruit, especially of the smaller kinds, has at least 
in this country not received the attention which it deserves. It may indeed be 
doubted whether many of those who delight in the autumn wealth of our Eng- 
lish hedgerows think seriously of growing the wild species for profit, much 
less of attempting to improve them. Our American cousins have, however, 
devoted a considerable amount of characteristic energy to the cultivation of 
" berries," whether native or foreign, and the present volume is the first of a 
proposed series of monographs on American fruits. 

Professor Card divides his work into four parts, the first of which is devoted 
to the discussion of the cultural methods best adapted to berries in general, 
with remarks on marketing and evaporation. The second and third parts are 
concerned with " brambles " (including raspberries) and " groselles " (currants 
and gooseberries) respectively, and contain special directions for the cultivation 
of the various species and varieties. Careful descriptions and figures are pro- 
vided of the more important pests and diseases, while references to standard 
works are given for all the species of fungi and insects known to attack the 
plants concerned. 

The book should prove of service to all who are interested in petit culture, 
whether in America or at home, not only because certain of the species described 
are native to those islands, but also because similar treatment might with 
advantage be applied to some of our own wild fruits. J. A. Terras. 


Photo-Micrography. By Edmund J. Spitta, L.R.C.P., M.R.C.S., F.R.A.S. 
4to, pp. 163, with 41 half-tone plates and 63 text illustrations. 
London: The Scientific Press, 1899. Price 12s. 

This work will be useful not only to beginners, but also to those accustomed 
to photo-micrographic work. It discusses the methods employed, the difficulties 
encountered, and the means adopted to overcome them. Of especial interest 
are the parts dealing with the covering power of lenses, the best combinations 
to use under special circumstances, the employment of condensers, the rough 
estimation of the N.A. of low power lenses, bacterial cultures and slides, and 
Appendix IX. It is to be regretted that the author makes no mention either 
•of magnesium as an illuminant nor of the methods available in the case of living 
specimens. A more detailed account of the best methods of producing fine 
negatives of histological specimens with the highest powers would have added 
much to the practical value of the work. The figures, with the exception of the 
histological ones, are for the most part excellent. E. W. C. 


Studien fiber Hirsche (Gattung Cervus im weitesten Sinne). By Dr. H. 
Nitsche. Heft 1. 4to, pp. xii. + 102, with 12 pis. and 12 figs. 
Leipsic : Engelmann, 1898. Price 20 Marks. 

The importance of antlers in the classification of the Deer, although some- 
what underrated a few years ago, is now fully recognised by naturalists ; and it 
is therefore satisfactory to find a morphologist of Dr. Nitsche's standing taking 
up the subject in earnest. The range of antler variation has indeed been fully 


mastered from a classificatory point of view ; and much has been done in 
homologising the various constituents of these appendages in the different 
genera and sub-genera. Much, however, still remains to be accomplished in 
this aspect of the subject, especially as to what extent the antlers of the Old 
World and New World deer (Mazama) are really homologous, and the degree 
of evolution they had attained when the two groups diverged. 

In the present part, which treats solely of antlers, and their relationship to 
horns, the author takes into consideration abnormal developments of the former 
appendages, which are discussed with great elaboration and wealth of illustra- 
tion. But the conclusions to be drawn from these abnormalities are reserved 
for future consideration, so that it is impossible to formulate, let alone criticise, 
the author's views until the work is further advanced. As Dr. Nitsche 
attended the Cambridge Congress last August, he had an opportunity of seeing 
the collections on which recent English work has been based, and was much 
impressed by their extent and completeness. 


Determinative Mineralogy and Blowpipe Analysis. By George J. BRUSH. 
Revised and Enlarged by Samuel L. Penfield. Fifteenth edition. 
8vo, pp. 312, with 375 figures. New York: John Wiley and Sons. 
London: Chapman and Hall, Ltd., 1898. Price 15s. 

Like other branches of science, mineralogy has for many years past been 
making rapid advances, and the work of acquiring the most recent information 
often entails the expenditure of much labour and time. On this account 
students of mineralogy will gladly welcome the appearance of this new edition 
of an already well-known book which it is unnecessary to praise. Suffice it 
to say that its past reputation is amply sustained in the present work. In it 
the most recent methods of blowpipe analysis are fully and clearly described. 
In chapter iii. the reactions of the elements are given in alphabetical order, 
and in the following chapter the various modes of procedure in blowpipe 
analysis are systematically set forth, the descriptions being accompanied by 
well-printed tables free from abbreviations. 

Chapter v. is devoted to the physical properties of minerals, beginning with 
crystallography, which is dealt with in sixty-five pages. In this the now 
generally accepted treatment of symmetry is adopted, and the employment of 
crystal forms instead of spherical projections will probably enable the beginner 
to grasp this part of the subject more readily than he would do from the 
illustrations which have hitherto been used. The figures in this chapter are 
well executed. It might, however, have been indicated on p. 222 that a 
radiating fibrous or divergent crystalline structure is common to all the four 
minerals selected for illustration. The chapter concludes with a few pages on 
the different methods of determining specific gravity. 

Chapter vi. consists of a most valuable series of tables for the determination 
of mineral species, thoroughly well brought up to date. These cannot fail to 
be of infinite use both to teachers and students. For the benefit of the latter 
the names of the most important species are printed in heavy type. A good 
index to general matter, followed by an index to mineral species, concludes 
this admirable and most useful book. F. R 


Fertilizers. By Edward B. Voorhees, A.M. 8vo, pp. 335. London : 
Macmillan and Co., 1898. Price 4s. 6d. 

The soils of America, like those of older countries, become exhausted in 
time by crop cultivation. We have increasing evidence of this in the multipli- 
cation of American works on fertilizers and the like. Of these the present 

246 SO ATE NEW BOOKS [march 1899 

treatise is a good sample. While details applicable to the cultivation of sweet 
potatoes, millet, and cotton may be of little service to the British farmer or 
market-gardener, he will here find fresh light thrown on many matters of direct 
interest to him. The nature, uses, and value of staple artificial manures, as 
well as less familiar ones, such as "ground king crab" and "garbage tankage," 
are lucidly and popularly dealt with. We fully acknowledge that we have 
much to learn, and to unlearn also, in regard to the action of fertilizers. 
Experiments such as are being carried out at the American Experiment 
Stations are the surest means of affording the desired knowledge. We are 
again reminded of our need of similar institutions here. 

John H. Wilson. 

Eecent Advances in Astronomy. By Alfred H. Fison, D.Sc. 237 pp. 
The Victorian Era Series. London: Blackie and Son, Limited, 1898. 
Price 2s. Gd. 

To give in the scope of so small a book anything approaching an exhaustive 
account of the great achievements in astronomical science during the last 
sixty years would be far from possible. The author therefore confines himself 
to describing what are in his opinion some of the more important discoveries of 
recent times. It is at once evident that the greater part of the contents had 
thus to be devoted to a description of the splendid advances in spectroscopy, 
and in those fields of astronomical research which have thereby been opened to 
human thought. Here we find an instructive and interesting historical descrip- 
tion of what has been done since the all-important invention of the spectroscope. 
One of the best chapters deals with the development of our knowledge of Mars, 
which, chiefly since Schiaparelli's discoveries, has become an object of earnest 
inquiry as well as of the keenest controversy. There is also an account of the 
investigations made with regard to stellar parallax, the distribution of stars in 
the heavens, their life in the past, and their probable future. Although allowance 
must be made for a difference of opinion as to whether the author has, on the 
whole, really selected what astronomers may think the most important advances 
made in astronomy during the Victorian Era, we cannot but admire the lucidity 
and grasp which he shows in his exposition of the subject. J. Halm. 

The Educational Review is further entitled "A Magazine of the Science and 
Art of Education, and Review of current educational Literature and Events." It 
is henceforward to be published on the 8th of each month at 203 Strand, 
London, W.C, price 4d. A new series began with the January number. The 
object is to discuss the principles rather than the politics of pedagogy. The 
number sent us contains valuable and suggestive articles by Miss Beale, Canon 
Lyttelton, Dr. Sophie Bryant, and others, but nothing of special interest to 
scientific readers. 

The Geological Survey of Queensland has issued as Bxdletiii No. 10, "Six 
Reports on the Geological Features of part of the District to be traversed by the 
proposed Transcontinental Railway," by R. L. Jack, Government Geologist. 
These were originally printed as a Parliamentary Paper in 1885, and are now 
reprinted with corrections and footnotes. Bulletin No. 9, also by Mr. Jack, is 
a "Report ... on the Chillagoe Mining District and projected Railway." 
Bulletin No. 8 is a " Report on the Gold Mines at the Fanning and Mount Success 
(with map)," by W. H. Rands. 

Dr. Gadow has been kind enough to point out an unfortunate mistake in 
our last number. " The Last Link " was said to cost 3s. 6d., whereas the price 
is 2s. 6d. 


Boen 1844; Died January 19, 1899. 

The name of Henry Alleyne Nicholson has been so long familiar to successive 
generations of students of zoology and palaeontology, that it must have been 
a surprise to many to learn that his life had reached its close in only its fifty- 
fifth year. 

His father, Dr. John Nicholson, was distinguished as a Biblical scholar, and 
was the son of a former President of Codrington College, Barbados. H. Alleyne 
Nicholson was born at Penrith on September 11, 1814, and received his school- 
training at Appleby Grammar School. He was also for a time in the hands of 
Francis Newman. He commenced the systematic study of natural science in 
the University of Gottingen, and from 1862 till 1867 he was a student of 
science and of medicine in the University of Edinburgh, graduating B.Sc. in 
1866, and M.B. and CM. in 1867. The study of medicine at that period offered 
the best access to the higher educational positions in natural science, and it was 
for this reason that he appears to have entered upon the study. In both 
science and medicine he was a most successful student, gaining high honours 
in the several classes. In 1866 he received the Baxter Scholarship as the most 
distinguished graduate in science for the year, and in 1869, on taking the degree 
of M.D., he was awarded the Ettles Medical Scholarship as entitled to the 
highest place for the year among the medical graduates of Edinburgh. 

While yet a student he had turned his attention to the geology of his native 
district, and had studied it with such care that he received the gold medal for 
his doctorial thesis "On the Geology of Cumberland and Westmoreland." 
Devoting himself to natural science, Nicholson became, in 1869, Lecturer on 
Natural History in the Extra-mural Medical School in Edinburgh, and delivered 
courses of lectures in zoology and in geology during about two years. In 1871 he 
was offered, and accepted, the Professorship of Natural History in Toronto, in 
Canada. In 1874 he was appointed, almost at the same time, to the Chair of 
Comparative Anatomy and Zoology in the Royal College of Science, Dublin, 
and to that of Biology in the College of Science, Durham. He chose the 
latter, and performed its duties during two sessions. In 1875 he was offered 
the Chair of Natural History in the University of St. Andrews, and he held it 
until 1882, when he succeeded Professor Cossar Ewart in the Chair of Natural 
History in the University of Aberdeen. At that time the winter course in 
Aberdeen, attendance on which was compulsory for graduation in Arts, consisted 
of a hundred lectures, chiefly on zoology, the last two months or so being devoted 
to geology. The summer course, on zoology alone, was suited more especially 
for medical students. 

In consequence of the changes rendered necessary in the curricula by the 
Ordinances of the Scottish Universities Commission, geology acquired a more 


248 OBITUARIES . [march 

adequate status in the University of Aberdeen, being placed on an equality 
with the other natural sciences. 

The teaching of geology now required provision for elementary and advanced 
work, both theoretical and practical, and Professor Nicholson applied himself 
with much zeal and success to securing the necessary equipment. The classes 
were greatly appreciated by the students, a fact that gave him much pleasure. 
He was relieved of the work of teaching zoology, except for the lectures in 
summer, his assistant, Dr. Alexander Brown, being appointed by the University 
Court lecturer in zoology, with the charge of the rest of the instruction in that 

As a teacher Professor Nicholson was singularly successful. An adept in 
the sciences which he taught, he was not content to rest upon his stores of 
knowledge, but made it his practice to revise immediately beforehand the 
subject on which he was to speak. Possessed of natural fluency, and knowing 
clearly what he wished to communicate to his hearers, he secured their interest 
and admiration. He excelled as a draughtsman with chalks, and his lectures 
gained much by his free use of the blackboard. His success as a teacher was 
largely aided also by personal qualities, a keen but always kindly sense of 
humour and great geniality of temper, that won for him the love of his 
students and colleagues, and has made his death to be felt as that of a friend. 

Dr. Nicholson was by preference a palaeontologist, and he did much original 
research in this field, the results of which have chiefly appeared in numerous 
lengthy and valuable contributions to the publications of scientific societies. 
Among these, which commenced with papers on Graptolites in 1866 and 1867, 
may be named particularly his "Monograph on the British Graptolitidae" 
(1872) ; " Reports on the Palaeontology of the Province of Ontario " (1874-75), 
published by the government of Ontario ; " Monograph of the Silurian Fossils 
of Girvan, Ayrshire" (1878); "The Structure and Affinities of the Tabulate 
Corals of the Palaeozoic Period" (1879); and "Structure and Affinities of 
Monticulipora " (1881). As indicating the extent of his labours, we find in the 
Royal Society's "Catalogue of Scientific Papers" that up to 1883 he is named 
as sole author of seventy-five papers and as joint author of nineteen others. 
These numbers have since been considerably increased. 

He was perhaps better known to students as the author of highly valued 
manuals and text-books on zoology and on palaeontology. The "Manual of 
Palaeontology," by Professor Nicholson and Dr. Lyddeker, reached its third 
edition in two large volumes in 1890, and has received very wide recognition. 
He also contributed zoological articles to the "Encyclopaedia Britannica," and 
was the author of a more popular work entitled " Natural History, its Rise and 
Progress in Britain." 

In 1877, and again in 1890, he was appointed Swiney Lecturer in the 
British Museum, and in that capacity he delivered lectures on geology and 
palaeontology to large audiences with great acceptance. 

During the past six years his health had not been good. Though not un- 
fitted for the duties of his office he suffered from frequent attacks of influenza, 
with complications, which at the beginning of the present winter took the form 
of gastralgia. After a short period of severer illness he died on the 19th 

He has left a widow, two daughters, and three sons. His sons have already 
gained distinction in their several paths. J. W. H. Trail. 


Born, 1811; Died, February 10, 1899. 

The Rev. William Colenso was born at Penzance. He started in life as a 
printer and bookbinder in the office of Watts and Son, London, where he was 


engaged on work for the British and Foreign Bible Society. This early training- 
stood him in good stead, for in 1833 he was sent out by the Church Missionary 
Society to establish a press in New Zealand. Here he spent his long life, 
devoted to missionary work mainly, and to botany, zoology, and ethnology 
secondarily. His first paper, on botany, was published in 1842 in the Tasmanian 
Journal of Science, and since that date he had contributed 32 papers on the 
above subjects to various periodicals. Colenso was an enthusiastic collector, and 
supplied Richard Owen with much information concerning the Moa and other 
extinct vertebrates. His knowledge of the Maori, his antiquities, and myths, 
was second to none. 


Born at Exeter, July 15, 1818; Died at Clifton, January 25, 1899. 

The well-known author of "A History of the British Hydroid Zoophytes" 
(1868), "A History of the British Marine Polyzoa" (1880), and a long series 
of papers on marine zoology, most of which appeared in the Annals and 
Magazine of Natural History, was the son of the Rev. William Hincks, 
formerly professor of natural history at Toronto. From 1855-1869 he was 
minister of the Mill Hill (Unitarian) Chapel at Leeds, where he took an active 
part in public and philanthropic affairs, turning his leisure meanwhile to 
marvellously good account in zoological work, which is a model of painstaking- 
accuracy and sound judgment. Failure of the voice compelled him to abandon 
his ministerial work, but he continued his scientific researches with zest almost 
to the end. At Taunton, and afterwards at Clifton, he lived his quiet life, 
gardening and observing and helping other workers. He was the last survivor 
of that illustrious company to which Professor M'Intosh recently referred {Nat. 
Sci. vol. xiv. p. 76) in his obituary notice of Allman. 

The deaths are also announced of Professor Dareste de la Chavanne, of 
Paris, the well-known teratologist ; F. Gay, of Montpelier University, a student 
of the green , algae, aged 40 ; Gilbert H. Hicks, First Assistant Botanist and 
Seed Expert of the United States Department of Agriculture since 1894, for 
many years an editor of the Asa Gray Bulletins—he, left a work on seeds shortly 
to be published by the Macmillan Co. ; Major J. Hotchkiss, author of a 
number of papers on economic geology ; Dr. Franz Lang, teacher of natural 
history at, and rector of, the Cantonal School at Soleure, Switzerland, aged 78 ; 
Professor Gianpaolo Vlacovich, anatomist, at Padua. The Aberdeen 
students' Magazine Alma Hater, for January 25, contains affectionate apprecia- 
tions and a good portrait of the late Professor Alleyne Nicholson 


Sir — Mr. Bulman's paper in your February number reopens a very interest- 
ing question. In the paper which he criticises, I contended (1) that nearly 
allied species are intersterile, and (2) that this being granted, we may put 
down to the credit of insects the development of flowers. To make good my 
first contention I depended mainly on the bees themselves ; they not infre- 
quently wander from species to species, and yet no intercrossing takes place. 
Thus I am able to dispense with the evidence supplied by the experiments of 
Alexis Jordan. If, however, his conclusions are accepted, my case becomes 
still stronger, since intersterility is extended even to sub-varieties. If it be 
conceded that species are sterile inter se, it is not difficult to show the reason- 
ableness of my second contention. The plants compete for the visits of bees, 
and the bees are in the position of a gardener who isolates a particular species, 
selects his plants of brightest bloom, and sows seed only from them. This 
assumes that bees have a colour -sense. The experiments by which Prof. 
Plateau attempted to prove that they had none really proves nothing of the 
kind, as Sir John Lubbock made clear in the Journal of the Linnaean Society 
(April 1, 1898). It is true that scent may answer the same purpose as colour, 
but colour or fragrance a plant must have or else bees will leave it unvisited. 
As to the term by-product, I meant that the plants from which our phanerogams 
are descended produced colour, but turned it to no useful purpose. It has 
been fostered and developed through natural selection. 

There remains a point which Mr. Bulman has raised and which I certainly 
dealt with inadequately. "Admitting," he says, "that all species, sub-species, 
and varieties, as they exist to-day, are sterile inter se, we cannot suppose that 
the varying individuals in a species — -which must form the beginning of a new 
species — are so." In this almost all biologists will agree with him. It is 
impossible to accept the theory of physiological selection in the form in which 
Romanes propounded it. If a few individuals in a species, having no 
superiority to their fellows and no distinguishing mark, are fertile only inter se, 
they are not likely to leave descendants : with flowering plants, since in many 
species cross-fertilisation is required only occasionally, the chances are much 
better. The few " physiologically separate " individuals might, by means of 
self-fertilised ovules, so increase their numbers as no longer to be scattered 
units among the herd from which they have cut themselves off. Setting aside 
this possibility, we can appeal to geographical isolation to help us. Since 
individual plants are fixed in one spot, such isolation may easily arise and 
continue long enough for a variety, originated locally, to become sterile with 
other varieties or with the parent species. Such local forms might arise in 
neighbouring valleys or on the banks of two streams that flowed not far apart. 
Armed with the intersterility thus obtained our young species will extend their 
range and settle among allied species and varieties without danger of inter- 
crossing, and the bees will be able to pursue the work of developing their 
flowers. F. W. Headley. 

Haileybury College, Hertford. 



The following appointments have recently been made : — Dr. Angelo Andres, 
well known for his work on sea-anemones, to be professor of zoology and com- 
parative anatomy in the University of Parma ; Dr. H. E. Annett, as demon- 
strator of tropical pathology in Liverpool ; C. Gilbert Cullis, to be assistant 
professor in the Geological Department of the Royal College of Science ; Dr. 
D. T. MacDougal, of the University of Minnesota, to be director of the labora- 
tories of the New York Botanical Gardens ; G. F. Stout, lecturer on comparative 
psychology at Aberdeen, to the recently founded Wilde lectureship in mental 
philosophy at Oxford ; Vidal de la Blache to be professor of geography in the 
University of Paris ; German Sims Woodhead, M.D. (Edin.), to be professor of 
pathology at Cambridge, in place of the late A. A. Kanthack. 

Walter Myers, M. A., and E. S. St. B. Sladen, M.A., both of Gonville and Caius 
College, have been elected to John Lucas Walker studentships of the University 
of Cambridge; J. Stanley Gardiner, M.A., Fellow of the same college, has been 
elected Balfour student for three years from March 25, 1899. 

Dr. Roux has been elected a member of the Paris Academy of Sciences in 
the section of rural economy. 

Dr. Richard Garnett, C.B., keeper of the printed books in the British Museum, 
has resigned his position, after a connection with the institution of forty-eight 
years. His name will always be associated with the monumental catalogue 
which has placed the literary treasures of the Museum within the reach of all, 
and his personality will ever be remembered for unfailing courtesy and readi- 
ness to aid with his own almost unrivalled knowledge the humblest student who 
asked his assistance. There are many students of natural science who have had 
the advantage of his marvellous bibliographical erudition. 

On February 2 a new bacteriological institute on a large scale was 
opened at Louvain. 

The annual meeting of the Millport Marine Biological Association was held 
in Glasgow on February 9. The. honorary treasurer, Mr. Alexander Somer- 
ville, submitted the annual report by the Committee of Management, which 
gave an account of the first year of the actual working of the marine biological 
station at Millport. There were over 8000 visitors to the museum during the 
past yeai*, and tables in the laboratory were utilised for terms varying from a 
week to a month on thirty-eight different occasions. The Committee took this 
opportunity of tendering very hearty thanks to all who had contributed in any 
way to the welfare of the station. During the past year many additions have 
been made to the station, especially in the laboratory department, but much is 
still required. The station cost £1800, but the Association has paid its way, 
and the balance against it is at present only £153, which says much for the 
good management. 

An experiment will shortly be made by a few interested in botany, towards 
establishing a collection of living British plants for purposes of study and 


252 NEWS [march 

observation. The garden will be a small strip of land, 200 ft. x 80 ft., at Cast- 
lands Road, Perry Hill, London, S.E., and will be under the charge of Mr. P. 
Cochrane. According to the plan, which we have seen, the land will be laid 
out with soils suitable to special classes of plants, as clay, sand, chalk, etc., and 
there will be marshy tracts to suit on the one hand fresh-water plants, and on 
the other those that live near the sea. There will also be fresh and salt water 
pools. Small zoological and geological collections are proposed later. The idea 
is being pushed forward by Mr. W. H. Griffin, the Hon. Sec. of theCatford Natural 
History Society, Mr. A. A. Abbott of Perry Hill, and others. The main object 
of the promoters is to secure for their district an educational exhibit, which will 
be, should it prove successful, of considerable value, and in any case cannot fail 
to promote an interest in botany. Further particulars can be obtained of Mr. 
Cochrane, at 47 Perry Hill, S.E. 

Dr. Melchior Treub, director of the botanical garden at Buitenzorg, recently 
celebrated the twenty-fifth anniversary of his doctorate. This has formed the 
excuse for the issue of a supplement to the Annates of that garden,, which, in 
167 pages with 9 plates, contains 23 papers written by some of the botanists 
and zoologists who have worked at the garden. 

Cambridge University has bought the Carne collection of Cornish minerals 
for £475. 

There has recently been erected at Great Crosby, near Liverpool, an erratic 
of gypsum, which was found in the boulder clay of that place. The erratic weighs 
about fourteen tons, and measures 9 ft. 6 in. x 7 f t. 4 in. x 5. ft. 7 in. The occur- 
rence of gypsum is rare in these deposits, and Mr. Mellard Reade, who describes 
the specimen in a separately printed tract, is of the opinion that it probably 
came from Whitehaven, in Cumberland. The erratic was presented to the 
town by Mr. Edward Peters, and the District Council of Great Crosby have 
shown considerable public spirit in permanently preserving this interesting 
geological object lesson. The boulder has been erected in the precise position 
in which it was found. 

Dr. E. J. Nolan has, says Science, presented the Philadelphia Academy of 
Natural Science with five volumes in memorial of the late Dr. Joseph Leidy. 
The first contains biographical notices and similar material ; the second 
contains botanical drawings and notes by Dr. Leidy, and the remaining three 
his zoological drawings and notes. All are carefully indexed. 

The latest of the Museum Handbooks (Publication 24) of the Manchester 
Museum, Owens College, is somewhat of an " omnibus " nature. It is devoted 
to " The Marine Mollusca of Madras and the immediate neighbourhood. Notes 
on a collection of marine shells from Lively Island, Falklands ; and other 
papers. By J. C. Melville, M.A., F.L.S., and R. Standen." The " other 
papers " are really three short notes on individual species, and the whole, illus- 
trating specimens in the museum, is reprinted, with the two plates, from the 
Journal of Concholor/y, vol. ix., "in the hope," which we cordially echo, "that 
they may prove useful to those who study the collections of Mollusca in the 
Manchester Museum." 

This is not the first time that the museum authorities have drawn on the same 
Society for materials to form one of their excellent series of guides, and the principle 
is one which other kindred institutions would do well to copy, since publication 
by reprint must be an economical mode of publication. The original pagina- 
tion has been scrupulously adhered to, as should always be the case in a 
reprint, but it spoils the look for a Handbook, and we would suggest to the 
museum authorities that appearances would be greatly improved if in future 
productions of this nature the original pagination were transferred to the inner 
end of each headline and an independent pagination inserted in its place. The 
cost would not be more than the finances of the College could well bear. 

1899] NEWS 253 

We have before now alluded to the educational collection of natural history 
specimens and literature relating thereto, belonging to Mr. S. Prout Neweombe, 
and at present displayed in the Free Library of St. George's, Hanover Square, 
London. The space is now required by the library commissioners for the regular 
purposes of the library. Mr. Neweombe now offers the collection to the London 
County Council under the following conditions : — (1) The collection is to be kept 
and exhibited always in a room to be named " The Natural History Reading 
Boom," which room is to be maintained in good order at the expense of the 
Council, and the collection is to be kept separate and distinct from other than 
natural history objects and literature ; (2) the collection is to be transferred 
to the Council for educational purposes, and not as a public exhibition ; (3) be- 
fore the end of the present year the collection is to be removed temporarily to 
the Shoreditch Technical Institute, and within a certain period thereafter to be 
transferred to a suitable place in the county of London. The " suitable place " 
may be the Chelsea Physic Garden, which, as we have already recorded, is to 
be made available for science students. The Technical Education Board has 
suggested the great hall of Aske's Schools, which would gradually be equipped 
as a museum in connection with the cabinetmaking classes. Whatever plan be 
finally decided on, we beg to urge that the exhibit should be made readily 
accessible to the wider circles of the public, for whom it is intended, and that 
no attempt should be made to give it a severely scientific or technical character. 

Mr. Edward Austin of Boston, an East India merchant, has bequeathed 
400,000 dollars to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology ; and 500,000 
dollars to Harvard College, Cambridge. 

The Scientific American of February 4 reports on the results of the investiga- 
tion of the late Mr. Keely's laboratory, which seem to show that the mysterious 
motor phenomena produced by "this nineteenth century thaumaturgist" were 
due to carefully concealed arrangements for the distribution of compressed air 
from a three-ton sphere beneath the building. Wonders do sometimes cease. 

The 13th meeting of the "Anatomische Gesellschaft " will be held at 
Tubingen from May 21 to 24. 

Professors Laguesse of Lille and Nicolas of Nancy have organised an "Associa- 
tion des anatomistes " analogous to the German Anatomische Gesellschaft. 
The first meeting was held in Paris in January. 

The American Society of Naturalists has elected Professor G. W. Farlow of 
Harvard as its new president, and Professor T. H. Morgan of Bryn Mawr College 
as secretary. 

The new president of the American Psychological Association is Professor 
John Dewey of Chicago. 

An Anthropological Society has been started at Amsterdam. The president 
is Dr. C. Winckler ;>. vice-president," Dr. E. Dubois ; secretary, Dr. Sasse, fils ; 
treasurer, Dr. C. Kerbert ; librarian, Dr. J. E. Grevers. 

At a meeting of the Scottish Microscopical Society, on February 17, Dr. 
Gregg Wilson read two short papers on Ceratodus. In the first it was shown 
that the lung arises in the two-months-old form as a mid-ventral diverticulum 
of the gut ; in the second it was pointed out that the development of the pro- 
nephros bears a startlingly close resemblance to that of the newt. 

On February 14, at the Royal College of Surgeons, Sir William MacCormac 
delivered the Hunterian Oration in the presence of the Prince of Wales, who is 
an honorary F.R.C.P., and a distinguished company. While recognising that 
Hunter was chiefly and finally a surgeon, he emphasised that his work was in 
the first instance biological. Our enjoyable contemporary The Outlook recalls 
a classic incident: " Interrupted one day in the midst of the dissection of a 

254 NEWS [march 

rare and interesting specimen by the message that a patient was waiting in his 
consultation-room, he at first refused to see him. On second thoughts, however, 
he threw down his scalpel, and rising, with a weary sigh, exclaimed, ' But I 
suppose I must go and earn that d d guinea ! ' — which is life in an epigram." 

At a meeting of the Royal Physical Society of Edinburgh, on February 15, 
Mr. William Evans submitted a list of the Collembola and Thysanura of the 
Edinburgh district, drawn up by Mr. G. H. Carpenter, of Dublin, and himself. 
The list, which was based entirely on specimens collected by Mr. Evans 
during the past three years, dealt with forty-four species of Collembola and five 
of Thysanura. Six of the former were additions to the British list. Mr. J. G. 
Goodchild made a second communication on the genesis of some Scottish 
minerals, in the course of which he dealt with the changes which had been pro- 
duced on minerals by the percolation of water from the surface downward. 
Mr. W. Eagle Clarke read a paper dealing with the recent appearance in Scotland 
of Macqueen's Bustard, and he also made a communication the subject of which 
was a Hebridean example of the Lesser Whitethroat. 

The Egyptian Government, with the co-operation of the authorities of the 
British Museum, is about to begin a- survey of the Nile, with the object of 
determining the species of fishes inhabiting its waters. The undertaking has 
been organised by Dr. John Anderson, F.R.S., who has long been zealously at 
work on the zoology of Egypt. His proposal for an investigation of the waters 
of the Nile from Cairo to its origin in Lake Albert met with strong support from 
Lord Lister, Professor Ray Lankester, and other distinguished men of science. 
It was also received favourably by Lord Cromer, with the result that the survey 
has been decided upon. The authorities of the British Museum have, it is 
understood, promised their assistance, and have also placed at the disposal of 
the Egyptian Government the services of Dr. Boulenger for the purpose of work- 
ing out the material obtained by the survey. A number of places along the 
river are to be selected, at which collections will be brought together and placed 
in the Museum tanks, which, when full, will be dispatched to London. Mr. 
Leonard Loat has been appointed superintendent of the survey, and he will act 
under the direction of Dr Keatinge, chief of the Medical School of Cairo. Mr. 
Loat is leaving England in a few days to commence operations. The physical 
characteristics of the river and the river bed are to be carefully noted, and 
attention given to the habits of the fishes. 

Mr. W. W. Skeat, of Cambridge, and formerly of Siam, has started, along with 
two zoologists and a botanist, on a scientific expedition to the southern regions 
of Siam, of which relatively little is known. 

A report of the work done by the German Deep-Sea Expedition, up to the 
time of its arrival at Victoria, Cameroons, is given by Dr. G. Schott in the 
Annalen der Hydrographie, Heft 1, 1899. 

Mr. John Whitehead has left for another scientific expedition to the 
Philippines. Mr. Whitehead's previous explorations were confined mainly to the 
island of Luzon. On this occasion he proposes to visit the southern islands, 
especially the great island of Mindanao, and should he succeed in penetrating 
into the mountains very valuable and interesting results are expected. If he 
is compelled to abandon his journey in Mindanao, he proposes to explore 
Formosa, Hainau, or the high mountains on the Siamese side of the Malay 

Mr. P. G. Ignatof reports in Globus (lxxv. No. 3) that the salt lake of 
Kyzyl-Kak, in West Siberia, which is said not to freeze, has a bright red colour, 
due to the large number of small Crustacea. 

Mr. H. J. Elwes has recently returned from the Altai Mountains. One of 
his chief objects was to visit the head-waters of the Yenisei, almost unknown 

1899] NEWS 255 

even to the Eussians — a great valley 300 miles wide by 200 miles long, scarcely 
inhabited, and practically unexplored. Mr. Ehves lias brought home a large 
collection of butterflies and moths. On the high mountains of the south he 
secured three specimens of the famous wild sheep, one having a measurement of 
sixty-two inches round the curve of the horn. Several fine heads were also 
obtained of the great stag of the Altai. Mr. Elwes also made a good collection 
of plants from the valley, but unfortunately, owing to an accident when crossing 
a river, the greater part of that collection was lost. 

Dr. Sven Hedin intends to make another journey in Central Asia. He will 
start from Kashgar, cross the Takla Makan desert by a new route, and pass 
through Tibet to India. 

In the last number of V Anthropologic (December 1898), Marcellin Boule 
abstracts the discussion on the plateau-flints of S.-E. England that appeared in 
our pages rather over a year ago. He sums up as follows : — "The problem of 
plateau-flints then is not elucidated. Perhaps this is because very different 
objects have been confused under a single name. Shapes like those figured by 
the English authors are found everywhere that flint exists, in all gravel pits, 
and even in our garden paths. As for those specimens, if such there be, that 
really do show the undeniable characters of intentional flaking, we must ask if 
the deposits whence they come are not analogous to those of our plateaux of 
the North of France, which are so rich and which differ from the valley deposits 
in their altitude alone." The defenders of plateau-man must try again. 

A considerable area in South-Eastern Minnesota is coloured as Cretaceous on 
the official geological map. This is confessedly based on scattered masses, 
supposed to be inliers emerging from beneath a coating of drift. Dr. F. AV. 
Sardeson, of the University of Minnesota, has recently examined these, and 
concludes that they themselves form a part of the north-western glacial drift, 
any Cretaceous fossils being remanies. There is one possible exception, an area 
of half a square mile in Goodhue county ; but even here the component strata 
are much disturbed, and the mass may be a huge erratic. Dr. Sardeson's 
results were published in the Journal of Geology, vol. vi. pp. 679-691, November 

Falcon Island in the Pacific, near Tonga, has disappeared, after an existence 
of exactly thirteen years. H.M.S. " Penguin," which recently visited the spot, 
found that the island had sunk three fathoms below the surface of the water. 
It was created in the first instance by a volcanic upheaval, and another sub- 
marine eruption may replace it on the map. Between Auckland and Tonga the 
" Penguin " took deep sea soundings, attaining a depth of 4762 fathoms. This 
is said to constitute a record. 

The Geological Society of Australasia has written to the Victorian Secretary 
for Mines, asking the co-operation of the Government in having a new geological 
map of Australia prepared as early as possible. 

The Geological Museum, Brisbane, was recently robbed of some gold 
specimens and gems of considerable value. The articles were placed in a 
safe when the museum was closed, and. the caretaker found that the wire 
connecting the alarm bells securing the glass cases had been cut and that the 
cases had been opened with keys. 

The Queensland Government have appointed their geologist, Mr. Eobert L. 
Jack, to supervise the collections of the exhibits to be sent from Queensland to 
the forthcoming Greater Britain Exhibition at Earl's Court and to represent the 
colony there. Mr. Jack reached London early in February. 

Mr. L. Boutan makes a report (Arch. zool. exper. vi. p. 229), of which we 
have only seen the commencement, on the progress that has been made in 
instantaneous submarine photography since his memoir on the subject in 1893. 

256 NEWS [march 1899 

The following interesting bits of information concerning British New Guinea 
were given by Sir William Macgregor, the recent Administrator, to a representa- 
tive of Reuter's Agency : — 

" It is not a country in which a man can produce wheat or turnips. It is 
adapted above all things for growing rubber, and for tea, coffee, tobacco, and 
cotton. Cotton and tobacco are indigenous. The tobacco is of very fine 
quality and ought to prove a valuable export. Probably the two principal 
exports will be rubber and gold. There is a great field for rubber plantation, 
and there are several kinds of indigenous rubber of high quality. Cocoa-nuts 
grow luxuriantly all over the colony. Water transport is supplied by many 
rivers, and we have good anchorages and harbours along the coast-line. Rail- 
ways are not likely to be very much required on account of our excellent 

" The greater portion of the 400 Europeans in the place are engaged in 
mining, the remainder devoting their energies to general trading. The produce 
in which they deal is principally collected by the natives, and includes copra, 
sandalwood, pearls, and a number of other things. A considerable portion of 
the natives are employed in trading, and many are engaged by the European 

" The natives are now quite settled over large areas of country, sufficiently 
so to make agricultural settlement under Europeans quite safe. In the remote 
districts there are, however, hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of tribes who 
have never seen or heard of Europeans. Since the great cannibal raid of two 
years ago, when all the war canoes were captured, cannibalism has been practi- 
cally unknown in British New Guinea, although there may, of course, be an 
isolated case here and there. 

" The prisons are the best schools for the natives. After the murder of Mr. 
Green, the magistrate, six natives more or less implicated in the affair were 
captured and put in prison. After a time they were made warders, and were 
subsequently given positions as constables among their own tribe, their first 
duty being to arrest the man who was chiefly responsible for the murder, whom 
we had previously been unable to find. As a result, the culprit was very soon 
brought in, and when I left all the ringleaders had been captured. This has 
been the general principle adopted by the Administration — in fact, it is the only 
possible one. 

" The young people are left to the missions, who conduct their education, 
but the training of the grown-up people is, as I have pointed out, principally in 
the hands of the police and the gaols. 

" The climate is much better than is generally supposed. During ten years 
I was only incapacitated from fever for about six days. This form of fever is very 
amenable to proper treatment, and proper treatment is simple. I believe that 
New Guinea will eventually be considered a healthy tropical colony. The 
average temperature for the year at Port Moresby is 82^ deg., the highest 
reading recorded during four years being 97 deg., and the lowest 65 deg. At an 
altitude of 4000 ft. to 5000 ft. the climate is very agreeable. One very im- 
portant fact is that we have no hurricanes." 

In view of the extensive use of petroleum products for insecticidal purposes, 
it is interesting to note Mr. L. O. Howard's evidence {Scientific American, Feb. 4) 
that the maggots of a species of Psilopa seem to live comfortably in crude 
petroleum pools. They breathe by well-protected anal stigmata which are 
periodically protruded above the surface. 

Di. C. Vi^uier has invented a tow-net suited for rapid pelagic work, e.g. on 
board a steamship. The points of his invention are the extension of the filter- 
ing surface by plaiting the silk, the more rapid passage of water through the 
apparatus, and an increase of solidity. It is described and figured in the 
"Notes et Revue " of the Arch. zool. exper. vol. vi. pp. vi.-xi. 

Natural Science 

A Monthly Review of Scientific Progress 

April 1899 


An Ancient Mollusc. 

The genus Pleurotomaria is the oldest among Gastropod Molluscs, and 
begins its career in the oldest fossiliferous strata, the Lower Cambrian, 
with the earliest known Trilobites and Brachiopods. 

In geological times its race was abundant, more than 1150 species 
having been described, and it attained its maximum, about 370 species, 
in Jurassic days, since which period it has steadily declined in numbers. 

The genus was long held to be extinct, but in 1855 the first recent 
example was obtained from a great depth between the islands of Marie 
Galante and Dominica in the West Indies by Commandant Beau. 
Unfortunately this shell appears to have been tenanted by a hermit- 
crab, so that the animal still remained to be discovered, and it was not 
till 1871 that the living occupant was obtained by A. Agassiz when 
on the " Hassler " expedition. Since then other examples of the genus 
have been obtained from the West Indian region and off Japan, that, 
with odd specimens of unknown locality, bring the total number of 
known specimens up to twenty-one belonging to four species. In only 
six instances, however, has the animal been preserved, and five of these 
have been procured on American dredging expeditions. 

Dr. Dall has published a few details concerning the animals of 
two, P. quoyana and P. adansoniana {Bull. Mils. Comp. Zool. Harvard, 
vol. xviii. 1889), and another specimen of P. quoyana has lately 
been entrusted by Prof. A. Agassiz to Messrs. Bouvier and H. Fischer 
to make as thorough examination as its preservation permitted of the 
soft parts. The result of their investigations now lies before us 
(Arch. Zool. expe'r., Ser. iii. tome vi. pp. 115-180, pis. x.-xiii.). The 
animal in question had been greatly damaged in extraction from the 
shell ; the whole of the spiral visceral-hump, with the gills and a great 
part of the mantle, were wanting. Under these circumstances it is 
hardly remarkable that the authors' observations are mainly confined 
to two points — the radula and the nervous system. 

The radula is remarkable for the number and variety of the teeth 
in each transverse row, and the curvature of these rows. On either 
side of the median tooth in each row 117 teeth, and the rudiments of 

18 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 86. 257 


yet another, were observed. They vary from broad, flat, simple plates, 
without any cusp, to narrow, sickle-shaped teeth, armed with three 
cusps. At the 50 th tooth from the centre a tiny brush of hairs 
makes its appearance, which in the succeeding teeth is more and more 
developed, the cusps decreasing at the same time till in the 109th the 
brush alone surmounts a slender and nearly straight tooth. These 
brush-teeth seem peculiar to the genus. 

The nervous system of Plcurotomaria is far too complicated to be 
treated of in the limits of this notice even in abstract, and it must 
suffice to say that our authors believe, and give good grounds for their 
belief, that in Plcurotomaria the clue will be found to the relationship 
of the nervous system of the Amphineura to that of the Gastropoda, 
the pedal cords of the Ehipidoglossa originating by the fusion of the 
pedal and pleural cords of the Amphineura, as evinced, amongst other 
things, by the presence of grooves along the under surface of these 
" pedal " cords in Plcurotomaria. 

It is an open secret that a more perfectly preserved animal of P. 
beyrichii, from Japan, is at present being investigated by Mr. Martin 
F. Woodward, so that further interesting details concerning the genus 
may be expected. 

Bats and Black Grouse of Ireland. 

The current (February) number of the Irish Naturalist contains 
two papers of more than ordinary interest — the first on the Natural 
History of Irish Bats, by Dr. Alcock, and the second on the intro- 
duction of the Black Grouse, by Mr. Barrett-Hamilton. With regard 
to bats, the present communication is only the first of a series of 
papers, and deals chiefly with the general characteristics of the order 
Chiroptera, with a few notes on the habits of particular species. The 
detailed history of the Irish forms will follow in due course. In the 
meantime we may express regret that the author (as we gather from a 
note on page 30) does not apparently intend to follow modern views 
of nomenclature. Personally we detest such changes, but as they are 
made by the advanced zoologists, the only sensible thing to do is to 
follow the lead. In starting with a misprint (Atalaplic for Atalapha), 
the author scarcely does himself justice. 

Mr. Hamilton, who has previously contributed interesting informa- 
tion with regard to the introduction of the brown hare into Ireland, 
accepts the evidence of a fossil bone as entitling the black grouse to 
be regarded as an indigenous Hibernian bird. He then discusses the 
records of its alleged early occurrence in the island, and follows on 
with an account of the numerous later attempts to rehabilitate the 
species. Unfortunately, these efforts have not, thus far, been 
attended with the success they merit. 


Bats in Burmese Caves. 

The Administration Report of the Marine Survey of India for the official 
year 1897-98 contains much valuable matter, that contributed by the 
Surgeon-naturalist, Captain A. B. S. Anderson, being of chief interest 
to our readers. We extract an account of a visit to some caves at 
Hpagat, 26 miles up the Salween from Moulmein : — 

" These natural caves are hollowed out in the base of an isolated 
limestone hill, about 250 feet high, rising very precipitously from the 
river, and appear to be very extensive, but difficult and most unpleasant 
to explore, owing to the great deposits of offensive bats' dung collected 
into heaps on the floor by the lessee of the caves. The entrance is 
about 12 feet high, much ornamented by Buddhistic sculptures, and at 
an elevation of some 20 feet above the level of the river. As the sun 
was setting we took our stand on a sand-spit facing the entrance of 
the caves, and soon saw a pair of falcons leave their perch on the trees 
on the summit of the cave hill, and restlessly fly to and fro over the 
river. They were speedily joined by Brahminy and common kites and 
jungle crows, and the entire flock, to the number of probably 60 to 
100 individuals, then flew to the entrance of the caves, close to which 
they remained wheeling about in mid-air. A few minutes later the 
bats began to issue in ones and twos, and were at once pursued by the 
watchful kites and crows, but appeared to have no great difficulty in 
eluding capture by their rapid and jerky flight, and their pursuers 
made no very determined or long -sustained efforts to capture them, 
but soon returned to their vigil over the cave. A minute or two 
passed, and a sudden rush of wings is heard, and the bats are seen to 
emerge from the cave in a dense stream which slowly becomes more 
and more closely packed, continues of about the same density for some 
ten minutes, and then gradually thins away, till about twenty minutes 
from the exit of the first bat the last has emerged. The stream of 
bats when at its maximum is some 10 feet wide by 10 feet deep, and 
so dense as to closely resemble smoke pouring from a chimney in a 
gale of wind, a resemblance increased by the slightly sinuous course 
pursued by the bats as they fly off into the after-glow. Indeed, in the 
great rush the bats are so crowded together that they frequently upset 
each other, and fall helplessly into the river below, whence by using 
their wings as paddles, and flapping over the surface of the water, they 
struggle ashore only instantly to fall a prey to the expectant crow. 
When the great rush occurs, the falcons, kites, and crows enter the 
stream of bats, and flying along, in, and with it, and striking right and 
left, seize as many bats as they require for food. By merely throwing 
my walking-stick twice into the stream of bats I obtained six specimens, 
but after the second throw the bats flew at a greater height than before, 
and out of easy reach of a stick. All the bats I obtained proved to 


be Nyctinomus plicatus. After the departure of these small bats a 
much larger species emerged from the cave in small numbers. It was 
then, however, too dark to see even to shoot them. During the last 
twenty years the bats appear to have considerably diminished owing 
to the depredations of their bird enemies, according to the lessee of the 
caves, but more probably owing to their continual disturbance by the 
collectors of the bats' duns;." 

Lack of Discrimination in a Mollusc. 

The Gastropod mollusc Xenopihora owes its name to its habit of 
coating the exterior of its shell with various foreign bodies. Some 
writers have even credited it with considerable power of discrimination 
in the selection of suitable materials. This idea was criticised in our 
review of Mr. Cooke's chapters on Mollusca in the " Cambridge Natural 
History," and we find our comments amply justified by Captain 
Anderson's observations on Xenophora. pallidula published in the 
Report we have just quoted from. He writes : " All the examples 
obtained by me seem to show that the sole selective ability it displays is 
in rejecting foreign bodies that are too large for it to move easily, its 
criterion being size and not shape or material. Xenophoras from different 
stations are seen to be very variously ornamented, but the prevailing 
ornament on their backs is also that suitable-sized body of which the 
largest quantity is present in the same haul of the trawl, whether this 
be dead shells or pieces of stone, etc. At one station off Madras, in 
the working season of 1894, the trawl was lowered over the steamer 
track in 107 fathoms and the Xenophoras there obtained were found 
to be adorned with small pieces of cinders and coal. Here they had 
merely attached to themselves the commonest convenient - sized 
objects within their reach quite irrespective of material." 

Hermit-Crab and Sea-Anemone. 

A Government Blue-book such as this Report of the Marine Survey of 
India is so little likely to fall into the hands of naturalists, that we 
make no apology for giving yet another extract. This relates to a 
hermit-crab, a species of Rarapagnrus, apparently new to the Indian 
fauna, and its associate, a colonial sea-anemone named Epizoanthus. 

" The smallest of these Pagurids inhabited gastropod shells on the 
backs of which were growing very small colonies of the Epizoanthus ; 
but as the Pagurids increase in size while the size of the mollusc shell 
remains stationary, they can insert an ever-diminishing part of their 
abdomens in their hosts' shells ; and were it not that the Epizoanthus 


increases in size 'pari 'passu with the growth of the Pagurid, and grows 
out as a projecting rim far beyond the mouth of the gastropod, the 
Pagurid would speedily be shelterless. As the Epizoanthus increases 
in size, the gastropod shell, which at first occupied the centre of and 
supported the colony, assumes a position near the periphery of the 
colony and at the same time loses its lime salts so completely that it 
causes no grating on being cut with a knife. In the largest colonies, 
which are some four inches in diameter and one inch in thickness, only 
the very apex of the mollusc may be visible, and that only on carefully 
hunting for it, so deeply in the substance of the colony is the gastropod 
imbedded. The hollow space in the Epizoanthus colony occupied by 
the Pagurid is lined by a thin but firm layer of brown chitin, which is 
easily detachable from the underlying cartilaginous-like body substance 
of the Epizoanthus. The colours of the Epizoanthus contrasted strongly 
with those of its guest ; for, while the latter had yellowish-pink claws, 
orange legs, bluish orange carapace with pale blue spots and an 
abdomen dirty brown in the male, crimson in the female, the ground 
colour of the former was madder brown with purple polyps." 

We have by no means exhausted the interesting matter contained 
in Captain Anderson's report, to which we would refer all students of 
bionomics and of geographical distribution. It is a pity that the price 
and publishers are nowhere stated on it ; but we presume that it is 
published in the technical sense. 

The Zola Dossier. 

" Je te repute que tout y est," said Dr. Pascal, as he showed Clotilde 
the famous family papers. And certainly we can echo this remark 
upon reading the somewhat bewildering pamphlet, " Emile Zola, a 
Study of his Personality, with Illustrations," which Mr. Arthur 
MacDonald, the author of " Abnormal Man," " Le Criminel-Type," 
" Criminology," and other learned books, has just produced. Assuredly 
" everything " is here, — everything that we do not want. We learn all 
about Zola's stomach, the size of his ears, and the length of his nose ; 
the secrets of his digestive apparatus are laid bare to us ; we learn 
with emotion that his sense of smell is so good that he knows before- 
hand what there is for dinner ; " he can distinguish tomatoes, chicken, 
mutton, and different species of fish " (the italics are ours) ; it further 
appears that the " Bizygomatic diameter of head " is " 146 mm.," while 
as to Zola's eyelids how instructive it is to note : " Palpebral fissure 
or slit medium ; superior left one uncovered." 

Against such advantages as these must be set the fact that " the teeth 
are bad. The alveolar arch is not normal " ; while " he is exceedingly 
sensitive to pain." 


Zola suffered much from poverty in his youth, but " when he 
began to be successful, he was more at ease." Quite so : 

La Palisse eut peu de bien 
Pour soutenir sa naissance ; 
Mais il ne manqua di rien, 
Dfes qu'il fut dans l'abondance. 

There is a certain stateliness in the following splendid marshalling 
of diseases : " Zola has orbicular contraction, cardiac spasms, thoracic 
cramps, false angina pectoris, sensory hyperesthesia, obsessions, and 
impulsive ideas." With this swan-like song the booklet crackles out, 
and we are not sorry. We do not know how much of this precious 
sort of nonsense is produced annually in the United States, but if by 
any chance anybody there or in this country is under the impression 
that this is science, the sooner his mind is disabused of the illusion 
the better. A study of Zola's personality forsooth, why, it is merely 
a collection of futile and rather disgusting details about his person, — 
a dull sort of drivel which is in reality a mingling of the impertinences 
of the interviewer with the indiscretions of the family physician. We 
cannot penetrate into the mysterious recesses of the artist's personality 
by observing the effect which aperient medicine produces upon him ; 
we may measure with exactitude the length of his ears, and count 
minutely the number of hairs which grow on the back of his hand, 
but these things will not teach us wherein lies the magic of his style, 
nor give us the divining rod by which to discover the hidden springs 
of his fancy. 

What is Life? 

" What is Life ? " asks Dr. Gustav M aim (Trans. Oxford Univ. Junior 
Scientific Club, No. 6, Feb. 1899, pp. 99-101), and one seeks in his 
three lively pages for an answer, which, it is almost needless to say, 
one does not find. Dr. Mann is evidently unwilling to postulate a 
" special unexplainable force," but he admits that the origin of organisms 
meant a new synthesis. " We must have, in addition to the old laws 
which govern the inorganic world, new ones which govern and regulate 
organic existence." This may be a very sound conclusion, but it is 
couched in strangely mediaeval phraseology for the Oxford University 
Junior Scientific Club. 

" The difference between inorganic and organic existence amounts 
to this : that the inorganic world has not the power of producing a 
chain of chemical events, or rather a cycle of events ; but that when 
one chemical affinity is satisfied there ensues rest till a new substance, 
for which it has a greater affinity, is brought into contact with it ; this 
meeting being one of chance (mathematical probability), or design 
(chemist). Organic individuals, within physiological limits, are inde- 

1899] WHAT IS LIFE ? 263 

pendent of chance, as the combination of compounds peculiar to each 
individual leads to the formation of a new environment consisting of 
complex carbon compounds, which in their turn, by acting on the 
world at large, so modify the latter as to make it directly assimilable 
by the nucleus. The nucleus in its turn forms the organic environ- 
ment or cell-plasm by which it is kept in existence." 

Dr. Mann calls this an " interpretation of life," but it seems to 
us rather dull. It is a description, and not a very lucid one, of one 
of the characteristics of the chemical changes observed in organisms, 
rather than a re-statement in simpler terms, which is the only scientific 
interpretation we know of. But some of Dr. Mann's paragraphs are 
more luminous. " In a cell we have a great many comparatively 
simple compounds, which only collectively form the protoplasm. What 
constitutes life is the presence of a number of such ' organic ' com- 
pounds, capable of mutually reacting on one another, and thereby 
giving rise to new compounds which, because of their origin, have no 
further chemical interaction, and which therefore will form a com- 
paratively stable mantle round the unstable or active groups which 
gave rise to them." 

Thus the cytoplasm is a new environment created between the 
chemically active groups (chiefly nuclear) and the world at large. 
It has the functions — (a) of elaborating food, (&) of protecting the 
nucleus from deleterious influences, and (c) of attracting food to the 
cell, or of moving the cell towards food. But what, after all, is life ? 


In a paper read before the Eoyal Society on January 26, Dr. D. H. 
Scott, F.E.S., gave an account of the structure of a new representative 
of a group of Palaeozoic plants known as Cycadofilices. The plants 
included under this head are among the most interesting of all fossil 
types, as they furnish very important evidence as to the lines of 
evolution of both ferns and cycads. Dr. Scott has recently had an 
opportunity of investigating a large number of specimens of a new 
species of the genus Medullosa, discovered by Messrs. Wild and Lomax 
in the Ganister beds (Lower Coal-Measures) of Lancashire. This first 
British example of the genus has been named Medullosa anglica. It 
differs in several points from the continental species, and adds some 
valuable facts to our knowledge of the Medulloseae. 

The stem — measuring about 7 cm. in diameter — was thickly 
clothed with the large leaf-bases of compound fronds, bearing ultimate 
segments of the form long familiar in the common Palaeozoic genus 
Alcthopteris ; and branched roots were given off in vertical series between 
the confluent bases of the leaf-stalks. In habit the plant must have 
borne a close resemblance to some recent tree-ferns. 


The vascular system of the stem consists of three (or locally four) 
steles, anastomosing and dividing at long intervals. Each stele is made 
up of a central mass of primary tracheids and conjunctive parenchyma, 
enclosed by a band of secondary wood and phloem, exhibiting the 
characteristic structure of recent cycad stems. The stem of Mcdullosa 
anglica is best described as a polystelic Hctcrangium. The leaf-stalks 
have the structure of the well-known Mycloxylon petioles, which are 
frequently met with in the calcareous nodules of the Coal-Measures. 
The course of the leaf-traces is peculiar, and differs from that in any 
known cycadean plants. The roots, not hitherto known in Meclullosa, 
were triarch in structure, and developed a fairly broad zone of secondary 
wood and phloem. 

Without attempting to enumerate the many facts of interest 
brought out in Dr. Scott's able paper, we may conclude by quoting the 
author's opinion that while Mcdullosa combines in a striking manner 
the characters of ferns and cycads, it should not be regarded as having 
lain " very near the direct line of descent of the latter group." 

What constitutes Publication ? 

This is always a vexed question. Those who contend that simple 
distribution by an author is equivalent to publication should note 
the remarks of Mrs. A. F. Kenyon in the Victorian Naturalist for 
December 1898, vol. xv. p. 99. This lady printed a List of 
Victorian Marine Mollusca, and posted a copy to various concholo- 
gists, including Professor E. Tate, who criticised its misprints in 
the journal mentioned. Mrs. Kenyon now says : " As the list was 
not published at the expense of any society, or offered for sale, I 
fail to see what right your correspondent had to review, it having 
been sent to him as an act of courtesy." Why on earth any one 
should go to the expense of printing matter of this kind " for private 
circulation only " we never could imagine. All the same w r e agree 
with Mrs. Kenyon that her list was not published, and should not have 
been referred to in public print, whether favourably or unfavourably. 

The Discoverer of Kitchen -Middens. 

In a well-reasoned paper, Dr. William Sorensen of Copenhagen asks 
and answers the question, " Who was the discoverer of the refuse heaps 
or ' kitchen-middens ' of the Stone Age ? " The designation which has 
had so great a vogue is no doubt due to the celebrated and versatile 
Johannes Japetus Smith Steenstrup, and he has not uncommonly been 
credited, not only with having invented the telling name, but also with 


having first discovered the unexpected nature of the great shell 
accumulations. He acted as reporter for the trio who, together or 
separately, at first unofficially, and then as an official committee, 
investigated those vast leavings of prehistoric luxury. The three 
scientific men concerned were Forchhammer, Steenstrup, and Worsaae, 
and the transaction begins half a century ago. But by a careful 
comparison of dates, and casual notes in a diary, and the precise wording 
of reports, Dr. Soreusen has clearly shown that the first and second of 
those authorities were forestalled in the true explanation by the third. 
While Forchhammer and Steenstrup were still accounting for the 
position of the seeming oyster-beds, high above the sea-level, on such 
hypotheses as the depression of the water or elevation of the land 
since the molluscs had been deposited, Worsaae had the luck and the 
wit to find evidence that the phenomenon was indisputably due to the 
agency, not of inanimate nature, but of man. Steenstrup's own earlier 
researches had contributed to prove the existence of men in Denmark 
at a time when the shell-heaps were in process of accumulation, so 
that he readily endorsed a discovery which he may have thought that 
Worsaae had taken almost from between his teeth. Fifty years ago it 
was an audacity to believe in men so very ancient as these oyster- 
eaters. Now we only think of their audacity in eating so many 

The Patagoiiian Ground-Sloth, Neomylodon. 

Zoologists are still much exercised concerning the supposed existing 
ground-sloth of Patagonia, and the Zoological Society of London 011 
February 21 devoted the greater part of an evening to a discussion 
of its skin. We were the first, last October and November (vol. xiii. 
pp. 288, 324-326), to recognise the importance of Dr. Ameghino's 
announcement of the discovery of this remarkable skin fragment, 
which he briefly described under the name of Neomylodon listed. We 
also made his privately -printed pamphlet generally accessible by 
inserting an English translation of it in our November number. Two 
months ago we announced (vol.-xiv. p. 171) that Dr. F. P. Moreno, 
Director of the La Plata Museum, had brought a piece of this 
identical skin to England and exhibited it to the Zoological Society 
of London. We now have pleasure in briefly reporting Dr. Moreno's 
account of the discovery of the specimen, and Mr. Smith Woodward's 
detailed description of its characters, which formed the basis of the 
Zoological Society's discussion on February 21, to which we have 

It appears that Dr. Moreno found the piece of skin hanging in a 
tree at a farm near Consuelo Cove, Last Hope Inlet, in Southern 
Patagonia. On his expressing interest in the specimen, the owner 


took him to a cavern where it was said to have been found, buried in 
earth, two years previously. Dr. Moreno at once began to make 
excavations, but did not succeed in recovering anything more except 
some unimportant bones of rodents. He had therefore to remain 
contented with the skin which he first noticed, and transmitted this 
direct to the La Plata Museum. He learned that Dr. Otto Nor- 
denskjold had already taken a piece of the specimen to Sweden, and 
that some Chilian officers had carried away other pieces ; he also had 
reason to believe subsequently that Dr. Ameghino had obtained a 
portion. Dr. Moreno's impression was, that the skin belonged to the 
extinct ground- sloth, Mylodon. Although the specimen had an 
extremely fresh aspect, and had evidently been removed from the 
carcase by man, he perceived no difficulty in this supposition ; for the 
Mylodonts were known to have been contemporaneous with man in 
other parts of Argentina farther north, while in another cave in the 
same district he had already found a well-preserved mummified human 
body of an extinct race, which was entirely unknown even to the 
existing Tehuelche Indians of that region. 

At the Zoological Society's meeting, Mr. Smith Woodward began 
his observations by emphasising the remarkably fresh aspect of the 
skin. A coating of dried serum was even still preserved on the old 
cut edges. He would, indeed, have unhesitatingly pronounced the 
skin to belong to a recent animal killed quite lately, had not Dr. 
Moreno been able to give so circumstantial an account of the discovery. 
The specimen was doubtless referable to an Edentate, but it was unique 
even for a member of that order in having the armour of ossicles 
confined to the lower half of the dermis, while the covering of hair 
was implanted in every part of the upper half. The ossicles were 
very similar in structure to the bony plates of the armadillos ; in fact, 
intermediate between the latter and the known ossicles of Mylodon. 
The hair was also like that of the armadillos, and there was no under- 
fur. Mr. Woodward thought he could recognise part of the left ear 
and left cheek at one corner of the specimen, which would imply that 
the skin belonged to the neck-region ; and in this case it was quite 
large enough for Mylodon. The bony armour of this part of Mylodon, 
however, was still unknown; the ossicles of the skin of this great 
beast had only been definitely described from the lumbar region. 
Hence the impossibility of deciding between the two rival hypotheses 
of Drs. Moreno and Ameghino. Mr. Woodward said he could only 
confirm the opinion that the skin truly belonged to a Mylodont ground- 
sloth ; he could not determine the genus without more evidence. 

In the interesting discussion which followed these observations, 
Professor Pay Lankester expressed his hesitation in accepting the 
problematical skin as that of an armoured ground-sloth. From the 
structure of the hair and the ossicles he suspected it might possibly 
represent an unknown group of armadillos ; but he anxiously awaited 


more evidence. Professor Seeley and Mr. E. T. Newton favoured the 
theory of Drs. Moreno and Ameghino and Mr. "Woodward. Several 
speakers alluded to the difficulty of believing that the specimen had 
been naturally preserved in a cavern since prehistoric times ; but Dr. 
Garson thought the discovery of the ancient human mummy in the 
same neighbourhood was conclusive proof of the favourable nature of 
the climate. 

More about Neomylodon. 

The pieces of the skin of Neomylodon collected by Dr. Otto Nordens- 
kjold have been turned to good account by Dr. Einar Lonnberg, of 
Upsala, who has just issued a detailed description of them in the 
report of the Swedish expedition to the south of Patagonia. 1 Dr. 
Nordenskjbld took his specimen when the piece of skin was about 1*5 
metres in length — it is now only half a metre square. He was also 
first to explore the cave scientifically (in 1896), and there he found 
the sheath of a claw which might very well belong to a large ground- 
sloth. Unfortunately, however, there was not a trace of the bones of 
the animal. 

Dr. Lonnberg considers that Neomylodon was an animal of the ap- 
proximate size of a small rhinoceros, or one of the Pampean mylodons ; 
and this leads him to conclude that the living animal stated to have 
been seen in Patagonia by Lista, and compared to an Indian pangolin, 
must have been a totally different creature, and not, as Ameghino 
supposes, identical with Neomylodon. 

That the latter was a relative of Mylodoa, and not a cousin of the 
glyptodonts and armadillos, is considered by Dr. Lonnberg to be 
practically certain. Not only are the dermal ossicles akin to, although 
apparently to a certain extent different from, those of Mylodon, but 
the claw is of a mylodont, as distinct from a glyptodont type. With 
regard to the hair, Dr. Lonnberg considers that in his specimen the 
outer sheath has in each case been removed, and that only the core 
remains. And he is thus led to believe that a very close analogy 
exists between the hair of the -Patagonian animal and that of the 
sloths. If, as he is inclined to think probable, some of the hairs of 
the former were coated with an alga, there would seem undoubted 
evidence of bradypodine affinity in this respect. But before the theory 
that the hairs in their present condition are nothing more than cores 
be definitely accepted, it would be wise to wait and see what Mr. 
Smith Woodward has to say on the subject. 

Apparently Dr. Lonnberg is of opinion that Neomylodon is generic- 

1 " On some Remains of JVcovi[/Iodon listai, Ameghino, brought home by the Swedish Ex- 
pedition to Tierra del Fuego, 1896," Svenska JExped. Magcllansland, ii. pp. 149-170. pis. 
xii.-xiv. Stockholm, 1899. 


ally distinct from Mylodon, and also that it has now probably ceased 
to exist. After mentioning that it might possibly have escaped the 
notice of the scattered white population of Patagonia, he adds that "it 
is absolutely impossible to think that this animal, if it was still among 
living beings, could have eluded the sharp eyes of the native Indians. 
Even if it had exclusively nocturnal habits, and hid itself during the 
daytime in the most desolate places, the hunting Indians must have 
come across it now and then, and they must certainly have observed 
its tracks, its traces where it had broken off branches and twigs when 
feeding, its scratchings or diggings in the earth, its excrements, etc." 

In all the above there is doubtless much of truth ; but, on the 
other hand, it must be remembered that a very large proportion of the 
naturalists who saw Dr. Moreno's specimen were inclined to regard it 
as of very recent origin indeed. And if the creature has been alive a 
few years ago, there is a strong probability that it still survives. 
With regard to its generic distinction from the mylodonts of the 
Pampean, it may be mentioned that many of these lived on to a 
comparatively late epoch, and also that most, if not all, of the modern 
genera of armadillos were already in existence during the Pampean 
period. This being so, it does seem, primCi facie, somewhat strange 
that Neomylodon should be entirely of post-Pampean origin, more 
especially if it is now either extinct or on the verge of becoming so. 

Supposed Mesozoic Mammals from Patagonia. 

The preliminary results of Dr. Santiago Eoth's discovery of so-called 
Mesozoic mammals in Patagonia, to which we referred some time ago 
(vol. xiii. p. 439), are rather disappointing. They appear in the 
Revista of the La Plata Museum (vol. ix. pp. 381-388), and a detailed 
memoir is promised later in the Anales of the same museum. The 
remains were found by Dr. Both, associated with bones of Diuosaurian 
reptiles, in no less than three distinct formations. In one place, 
moreover, a marine band was intercalated between the mammal-bearing 
deposits, and this contained casts of shells which are said to occur in 
the undoubted Cretaceous of Brazil. The mammals themselves, 
however, are totally different from those primitive types which we have 
hitherto known to be of Mesozoic age. if they were found in the 
northern hemisphere, indeed, and if their exact date were unknown, we 
should not be surprised if mammalogists claimed them to be late 
Tertiary. Nine new genera are founded, all apparently most closely 
related to the aberrant hoofed animals which are so characteristic of 
the Tertiary formations of South America. It seems to us more 
likely that Dinosaurs survived in the Tertiary fauna of the South 
American continent, than that highly specialised Ungulata were already 


differentiated there in the midst of the Mesozoic fauna; but whatever 
be the geological result of these discoveries, we await Dr. Eoth's 
completed memoir with the greatest interest. 

A Fine Taste in Binding. 

In Mr. Thomson's review of Professor Ewart's " Penycuik Experiments " 
(Natural Science, xiv. pp. 203-212) no notice was taken of a feature 
which should not have escaped a naturalist's eye, we mean the 
"external characters." It is with these that a biological description 
should begin, and in this case they are striking enough. We believe 
that the quaint work called The Evergreen, also an Edinburgh product, 
had its spring number at least clothed in lamb's skin, which was 
suggestive enough of the gentle bleatings within. It is strange 
therefore that one of the authors of The Evergreen should have failed 
to remark that " The Penycuik Experiments " are clothed " in zebra." 
We would congratulate the author and the publishers on this elegant 
binding in the hope that others will follow their example. How much 
it would add to the grace of our bookshelves, how much it would 
lessen the labour of finding a book, if each volume were so to speak 
indexed by its binding. How ineffably better than any decimal 
notation if biologists would in their binding rehabilitate the " doctrine 
of signatures." We read that " Matopo " became strangely excited 
when he saw a zebra skin ; we should like to know what he did when 
he saw the book. 

The True Function of the Thymus. 

Dr. John Beard is to be congratulated on having arrived at the 
solution of a problem which he has had before him for years, — the 
function of the thymus. Since Kolliker discovered its origin in 
mammals from the epithelium of a gill -pouch, and stated that the 
original epithelial cells gave rise to lymph cells or leucocytes, two 
views have been held regarding- this puzzling organ. " On the one 
hand, Stieda and His have maintained that the leucocytes which 
always form integral parts of the thymus soon after its first origin 
have migrated thither from the exterior, possibly from the mesoblast. 
In this conclusion they have been supported by the researches of 
Dohrn, Gulland, and Maurer, and by almost every text -book of 
embryology and comparative anatomy published since 1879. On the 
other hand, Kolliker has stoutly maintained his original position, and 
the results of his investigations have been emphatically confirmed by 
Prenant, Oscar Schultze, and Beard." So far the historical aspect. 
But Beard has now shown {Lancet, January 21, 1899) that in the 

2 7 o NOTES AND COMMENTS [apeil 

smooth skate {liaia batis) leucocytes appear at a time when the spleen 
has no existence, when there is no rectal gland nor lymphoid structures 
of any sort. The leucocytes are then present in the epithelial cells of 
the thymus primordia. Thence they soon begin to migrate, emerging 
in crowds which cause larger or smaller " breaks " at various places on 
the contour of the thymus. As the author puts it : — " It is Kolliker's 
great service to have shown that leucocytes arise in the thymus from 
its original epithelial cells ; to Gulland's researches we owe the result 
that the first leucocytes are found in the mesoblast in the neighbour- 
hood of the thymus; and, finally, it has fallen to my lot to show that 
the first leucocytes arise in the thymus from its epithelial cells, and 
that thus it is the parent source of the leucocytes of the body." We 
are not clear as to the logic of the " thus " in the last sentence, but the 
discovery is a triumph, and we eagerly look for a full paper with 
illustrative figures. 

Antlierozoids in Gymnosperms. 

The long-expected account of antherozoid formation in Cycas revoluta 
has at length appeared in a form which renders the extremely valuable 
results obtained by Mr. S. Ikeno available in all their details to the 
ordinary European reader (Jahrb. f. wiss. Bot. Bd. xxxii. 1898). Several 
notices which have from time to time appeared in various publications 
have already made us acquainted with the general outline of the 
research, but we have now before us for the first time a complete 
account of the process of fertilisation in Cycas as it takes place under 
normal conditions in the natural habitat of the plant. 

The development of the archegonium differs but little from that in 
other Gymnosperms, except as regards the enormous size, 4 mm. x 1 mm., 
reached by the adult organ. The most remarkable results obtained are, 
however, those relating to the germination of the pollen grain, a pro- 
cess for the completion of which a period of three months is required. 

The greater part of the ripe spore is composed of a large round 
" embryonal " cell, accompanied by two much smaller " germinal " cells 
placed one above the other close against the inner side of the wall. 
The pollen tube arises in the usual way from a thin area in the wall 
of the embryonal cell, the nucleus of which accompanies the apex of 
the tube as it bores its way into the nucellar tissue, where it branches 
and apparently soon becomes quiescent. Meanwhile the two germinal 
cells have become spherical, at the same time increasing considerably 
in size, especially the inner one, the nucleus of which divides in a 
direction at right angles to the axis of the pollen tube, without how- 
ever any formation of a cell wall. One of the resulting daughter 
nuclei commences to grow rapidly while the other remains of small size, 
and is ultimately crushed against the wall by its more successful sister. 


A similar occurrence has been recorded by Strasburger {Histol. Beitr. 
Heft iv.) in certain Coniferae, but in this case the division is parallel 
to the axis of the pollen tube, and a distinct wall is formed. With this 
difference, however, the processes are identical, and the crushed nucleus 
of Cycads must be looked upon as homologous with Strasburger's " stalk " 
cell, while its sister nucleus corresponds to that of his " body " cell. 

At this stage the embryonal nucleus begins to move back from 
the apex of the pollen tube, and eventually comes in contact with the 
body cell, now considerably enlarged, elliptical in outline, and filled 
with dense protoplasm. The exine covered remains of the pollen 
grain thus contain, besides the body cell, the outer germinal cell, the 
nucleus of the embryonal cell, and that of the stalk cell, all of which 
presently swell up and disappear, being apparently absorbed by the 
body cell, which continues to increase in size and eventually divides, 
the daughter cells remaining for some time connected by a strand of 
faintly staining cytoplasm. The plano-convex cells which result from 
this division lie with their flat surfaces in contact, and become the 
antherozoids. Each consists of a large nucleus enveloped in a com- 
paratively thin sheath of cytoplasm, in which not far from the centre 
of the convex side there appears a short band, the origin of which is 
tentatively ascribed by the author to the centrosome. This band, at 
first composed of granules which soon fuse to form a filament, comes 
in contact with a beak-like process thrown out by the nucleus, increases 
rapidly in length, and finally describes four or five complete spiral 
convolutions directly beneath the convex surface of the antherozoid. 
Its outer face is clothed with cilia, which, formed at first within the 
cell, ultimately project beyond it into a spiral groove running parallel 
to the band, and indenting alike cytoplasm and nucleus. The anthero- 
zoids when ripe escape from the pollen tube into the fluid-filled space 
within the membranous remains of the nucellus ; here they swim to 
the neck of the archegonium and thus enter the egg cell, where the 
nucleus slips out of its cytoplasmic sheath, leaving it to disappear in 
the upper part of the cell while it moves down to the centre to fuse 
with the nucleus of the egg. 

The Broad Path. 

Every one has no doubt heard of the ingenuous youth who defined 
Grimm's Law as the law whereby any consonant could be replaced by any 
other, but we have sometimes wondered whether a definition of biology 
on similar lines might not prove acceptable to some of its students. 
As thus — -Biology is the science which proves that everything is in 
process of being converted into something else, and that this has an 
important bearing on human life. We recommend the definition to the 
notice of the versatile author of " Cycling : its Effect on the Future of 

272 NOTES AND COMMENTS [apbil1899 

the Human llace " {Medical Magazine, 1899, vol. viii. pp. 128-135). 
We admit that it is defective in that its phraseology is simple, and 
does not involve those " exact distinctive terms " without which 
" clearness of understanding is impossible," but our only apology is that 
the variety of biology to which we have been accustomed does not 
enable its devotees to attain the clearness gained by describing man as 
a " degenerating, quadrupedally-ancestored biped." We are afraid also 
that our biological training did not include the study of the " successive 
stages in the progress of the human baby towards the attainment of 
bipedal progression," in spite of the fact that a " knowledge of the out- 
line of such a history is part of an ordinary scientific equipment." We 
regret these deficiencies the more because we think that " science " 
like that of Mr. Buckman's article — which, of course, we take as a jeu 
d'esprit — must have many advantages. When one gets habituated to 
the harmonious multiplication of adjectives, and learns to indulge in 
bipedal locomotion instead of taking a walk, the broad sweep of the 
generalisations and the easy superiority to petty detail must have a 
wonderful fascination, and besides it must save trouble. Biologists of 
the old-fashioned type have, we believe, spent laborious days in 
investigating the structure of animal parasites, and yet how needless 
was their labour ! Could they but reach the true light, they would 
realise the simplicity of nature, would understand that parasites have 
" reverted to ancestral conditions," where the " body of the organism is 
nourished by endosmotic action." Similarly, physiologists need no 
longer toil and experiment, for their problems can be easily solved. 
Would they learn the cause of the symptoms of alcohol poisoning ? 
Obviously these can be readily explained as a. " return towards the 
quadrupedal stage." Would they as physicians know the cause of 
baldness in man ? Again what is it but reversion ? Surely the 
beauty and simplicity of this method of reasoning must be apparent to 
all. It is true that it leads to somewhat revolutionary results ; thus 
w 7 e learn that the whale is an " instance of return from a higher to a 
lower state," for it is a " mammal which has gone back to the fish-like 
form," but we must be prepared to sacrifice a few prejudices to a 
method which yields such a copious amount of information on so many 
diverse topics. Does it not teach us that one of the great advantages 
of cycling is that " the weight is rolled along," while " in bipedal loco- 
motion the body is reared up on end " and " carried, in a most disad- 
vantageous manner, alternately on one limb," and who would not 
sacrifice much to obtain so priceless a bit of information ? Let whoso- 
ever will therefore roll with our author down the broad path, regardless 
of the stubborn few who attempt to bipedally progress up the narrow 
one. We have entered this protest against science made easy, but 
surely the sense of humour is not so dead amongst us that it will be 
supposed that we mean more than that Mr. Buckman has lapsed in his 
article just as Homer may have nodded. 


The Development of Rivers ; and particularly the 

Genesis of the Severn. 

By S. S. Buckman, F.G.S. 

I recognise the difficulty of the task. I do not pretend to be able to 
perform it adequately ; but I have the hope of placing the subject on 
what may be a somewhat surer basis for future work. 

I. Introduction. — A few words as to the evolution of my ideas, 
showing how greatly I am indebted to other people, may not be amiss. 
In some topographical articles (1), and in a communication to the Geo- 
logical Society (2) in reference to some valleys now holding tributaries of 
the Severn, I pointed out that their upper parts could only have been 
excavated by streams which were tributaries of the Thames ; that 
therefore there must have been high ground — lost Cotteswold Hills, 
in fact — to the north and west of the present escarpment; and 
that the Thames must have been a larger and longer river than now. 
I said that the diversion of a west-to-east stream, tributary to the 
Thames, must have been brought about by the working back of a 
Severn tributary — the one which now forms the Chelt ; and that in 
course of time the present Chelt must serve the same trick on another 
Thames tributary, the Coin, because it could give so much quicker fall. 

But in extending the Cotteswold Hills farther to the west, I 
certainly had no idea of filling- the Severn valley completely with 
Jurassic rocks, and supposing the non-existence of the Severn itself. 
However, when I read the paper by Osborne White (3) citing the 
opinion of Professor W. M. Davis (4), that, in effect, the Severn valley 
was filled with Secondary strata, and that the Thames streams 
originally headed back in Wales, what was till then obscure became 
suddenly clear : the phenomena of the Severn and its tributaries seemed 
easily understandable. And the more the idea is worked out the more 
does the evidence in its favour seem to accumulate. 

I ought perhaps to make this somewhat clearer. Of course it has 
always been recognised that the Severn valley was originally filled up 

19 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 86. 273 

274 & & BUCKMAN [afbil 

with Jurassic rocks and buried beneath Cretaceous strata ; but it had 
not been understood that the Thames streams flowed across this area for 
a long time before the Severn had existence. It seemed to be supposed 
that the Severn and the Thames were contemporaneous, that the Severn 
cut a channel between Palaeozoic and Mesozoic rocks, and so initiated 
the Mesozoic escarpments ; that the Cotteswold escarpment extended 
farther west to nearer the present position of the Severn ; and lias only 
been worn back therefrom by the further cutting done by the Severn. 

Yet I afterwards learnt that some dozen years before Professor 
Davis put forth his views, Dr. T. S. Ellis (5), of Gloucester, had 
imagined the possibility of rivers flowing across a non-existent Severn 
valley. He says, " If we could have it admitted that the trend of the 
country was originally to the east before the present [Severn] valley 
was formed at all, following a slope as the Cotteswolds now dip; then 
one could imagine a stream flowing through the gap between Malvern 
and May Hills along the line of the Leadon and escaping over the 
Cotteswolds at Witcombe, so first marking out one of the west-to-east 
streams of which apparent signs remain." 

To his paper he appends a map showing the application in three 
cases : — A. The Severn to Tewkesbury flowing up the valley of the 
Swillgate to Cheltenham, and up the Chelt valley to the Coin at 
Andoversford ; B. The Leadon flowing past Gloucester and over the 
Cotteswolds near Birdlip, and so into the Thames system ; C. A river 
from west of May Hill flowing up the Stroud valley along the course 
of the Frome. 

In his arguments for his theory from the physical features of the 
country he makes another good point. " The peculiar course of the 
tributaries of the Severn in our district seems to have a bearing on my 
suggestion that the first streams flowed across the line of our valley. 
It is remarkable that nearly all those on the left bank flow towards the 
river in a direction against that of the Severn itself. . . . Can these 
tributaries on the left side be occupying channels originally marked out 
by streams flowing in the opposite direction ? " 

Lately I have had the great advantage of accompanying Professor 
Davis to some of our Cotteswold streams, and he has urged me to give 
an account of the Severn. 

This introduction is rather long ; but I wish to show my indebted- 
ness to others. I feel that the ideas to be set forward are not mine 
in any great degree. And, in fact, I know not how much is from 
myself, or how much has been suggested by the written or verbal 
communications of others. 

II. General Considerations. — At the first initiation of the drainage 
of an area the direction of streams is determined by the dip. Such 
streams are termed consequents by Professor Davis (4). Now it is 
necessary to consider what would happen in a tilted area composed of 
rocks of varied power in resisting denudation, and different porosity. 


For the purpose it may be said stronger and weaker rocks, also pervious 
and impervious. 

The stream cuts down its beds so that different rocks outcrop in 
the stream-bed, and are exposed on its flanks. Weak rocks are denuded 
faster to make combes, impervious rocks send forth springs. The springs 
and combes become side-streams and valleys. The side-streams are 
subsequents. Now consequents cannot get any better off than at first : 
they get all the drainage and cannot get more. But subsequents become 
better off the more they work back. The consequents are dip-streams, 
they are best off when they start. The subsequents are strike-streams 
— they are worst off at starting, and best off at finish. 

A strike stream has a dip side and an antidip side. It obtains all 
the drainage of the dip side by the former streams. If it can give the 
water a quicker fall to a lower level in a shorter distance, 1 it will 
start streams on the antidip side. Antidip streams are obsequents. 
Like subsequents they become better off the more they can work back. 
They are really stronger than subsequents, and can in time obtain 
practically all the drainage of a given area. 

In the case of an anticline a consequent could grow by developing 
obsequents beyond the axis. The Salisbury Avon seems to be doing this 
in connection with the Pewsey anticline, taking the water and destroy- 
ing the south drainage area of the Kennet. Artesian action too is possible 
— it may obtain water which falls far to the north of the Kennet. 

In a drainage area which had not suffered previous denudation 
subsequent streams would be started along anticlinal axes, because 
there the impervious rock, and hence the water-level of the upper area 
would first be reached. 

In an area which had suffered previous denudation so that different 
rocks outcrop, the same would apply where there was a wide expanse of 
a rock of uniform composition. The head-waters of the Salisbury Avon 
in the Pewsey valley, and the growth of the original Sevenhampton 
branch of the Coin in the Charlton Abbots valley, are examples. In 
part this may explain the preservation of synclinal areas. 

But in such a drainage area, where stronger and weaker rocks out- 
crop not far apart, the subsequent streams will be developed along the 
strike of the weaker rocks. The Ock, and the Thame, and the Thames 
above Oxford, are examples. So, in fact, are rivers which drain along 
the strike of New Eed Sandstone, Lias, Oxford Clay, and so on. 

But this is a digression. What I want to point out is this, there 
are started, first, dip-streams, secondly, strike-streams, and thirdly, 
antidip-streams. Where would their position be ? Naturally in the 
lowest ground — the valleys of the beheaded dip-streams or consequents. 
This seems to be an important matter to consider in drainage 
restoration. If obsequents tend to occupy and work back in valleys of 

1 This is important : it is not necessarily a shorter route to the sea, but an immediate 
quicker fall. 




consequents, there would be established a principle of permanence of 
river valleys, making drainage restoration a certainty. The valley 
would remain a valley even though denudation had removed its sides 
far below the original floor of the consequent stream. There is Dr. 
Ellis's suggestion with regard to the left or antidip tributaries of the 
Severn ; as it would be put now, they are obsequents which occupy 
and have deepened valleys of consequents, or Thames streams. 
Diagrammatically the history has been this : — First, consequents 
flowing N.W. to S.E. (Fig. 1, A), secondly, consequents cut into by a 
subsequent, and obsequents started up the consequent valleys (Fig. 1, B). 
Then the obsequents proceed farther up the consequent valleys, their 



Fig. 1. — Theoretical diagrams illustrating (A) consequent streams threatened by a subsequent, 
(B) consequent streams captured by subsequent, and initiation of obsequents. 

relative lengths according with the successive dates of capture of the 
consequents. Naturally, then, the obsequents should have a direction 
S.E. to N.W., and they have. See the sketch map (Fig. 2), which 
illustrates the actual result, closely in accordance, it will be seen, with 
the theoretical diagram (Fig. 1, B). This matter is very important ; and 
it follows from considerations of these cases that the beheaded conse- 
quent and the growing obsequent should be found occupying opposite 
sides of the divide with in many cases a continuous valley (Fig. 3). 

Therefore in such valleys, which would form passes, the obsequent 
and consequent streams should be opposite to one another. 

From many actual cases I select a rather striking example : — 
Two cases are shown in Fig. 4, the Isborne and the Coin, in a deep 
pass : a branch of the Windrush and a branch of the Isborne — the 





Direction of 


divide in a slight depression. The Coin had formerly taken off the 

head-waters of this Windrush 


Professor Davis (7) gives 
an example : — A branch of the 
Meuse and a branch of the 
Toul (Moselle) opposite. 

This brings me to another 
matter — passes and depressions 
often produce the feature of 
breached escarpments. What 
is the significance of breached 
escarpments, and what do they 
point to in the way of river 
restoration ? To understand 
them it is necessary to classify 
them, bearing in mind that 
mainly they represent beheaded 
valleys. According to the 
history of the valleys they 
have to be classified. There 

are : — 

I. Valleys opening out 
headward on a plain. A 
stream drains the plain, and 
perhaps more beyond ; and it 
flows down the valley with the 
dip. Examples : — The Goring gorge 

Fig. 2. — Sketch map of the present arrangement of 
the Severn and its tributaries near Gloucester. 
The dotted lines indicate the supposed courses 
of the original consequents. From the Ordnance 
Survey, Scale, 1" = 4 miles. 

the breach in the Chalk 

-Section of valley crossed by divide at A. B is beheaded consequent stream, C is the 
obsequent stream. D is the original level of the floor of the formerly extended valley 
of the consequent. This really shows what I have termed a duplicate valley (6). Above 
D B is one (the original valley) ; D A C is the second valley. The inclined lines show 
dip of strata (exaggerated). 

escarpment at Upavon, where the Salisbury Avon enters, draining the 
Vale of Pewsey. 

II. The valley is similar, but no stream flows through it. If it 
holds a stream at all it is only in the lower part. Example : — The 




Ogbourne gorge, in the Chalk to the south of Swindon towards Marl- 
borough, along which runs the Roman road from Cirencester to 

III. The valley contains a divide from which the floor slopes both 
ways : it holds two streams — one flowing with the dip and one against 
(Fig. 3). Examples : — The pass from Cheltenham to Andoversford ; 
the pass from Winchcomb to Andoversford ; the Moreton valley. 

IV. The valley contains an antidip stream only. Example : — The 
Stroud valley. 

V. The valley opens headward high above the plain ; it only con- 
tains a stream in its lower part, if at all. Examples :— More or less 

' '-BnocAhamlito 

Fig. 4. — Opposition of obsequent and subsequent, and obsequent and consequent, streams near 

Winchcomb. Scale 1"=1 mile. 

dry valleys extending back from the Cotteswold escarpment — a valley 
leading from above the Vale of Pewsey to the Kennet, in which runs 
a road from Marlborough to Alton Priors. 

To consider the development of these valleys and the escarpment 
breaches to which they give rise. I. This is due to the cutting down 
by a consequent stream in the ordinary course of events. II. is due 
to the same cause ; but there is a later phase : the original excavating 
stream has been tapped and diverted before reaching the gorge. III. 
This is a further development of II. An obsequent stream has been 
started, which excavates the original valley-floor of the consequent 
stream, farther and farther back. This type is found in all stages of 
development up to IV, in which the original consequent stream has 
been nearly driven out of its valley, and the valley-floor has been 
trenched nearly to the mouth of the original valley. 

The first type of valley holds a through stream now. The 
others are considered to have held through streams formerly. Where- 
fore when they are recognised, such through streams may be given 
them in river restoration, and according to the relative depths to 
which the cutting of the original valley-floor has been carried out, so 
may the further stage of river development be surmised — whether a 
stream captured its neighbour before it was captured itself, and so forth. 




;: Ecfteiitorfh 

The escarpment breaches connected with these valleys must be 
separated from those connected with the type of V., which indicate not 
a through stream but merely local traffic. Their history has been 
this : when the escarpment stood farther forward there was sufficient 
collecting ground for the rainfall : a spring could issue at the back of 
the escarpment and its stream formed a valley ; the escarpment has 
been worn back ; the collecting ground has gone ; the spring has 
disappeared ; the escarpment has been worn back farther ; the head of 
the valley with the place where the spring once rose has been taken 
off. The head of the valley forms a notch or breach in the present 

In drainage restoration a through stream with a distant source 
must not be accorded to valleys of the type of V., breaching escarp- 
ments, only a short local stream must be given. 

Among other numerous phenomena of rivers and valleys one 
further feature must be noticed now, as it is important in drainage 
restoration. It presents itself as a sharp 
turn in the course of a stream ; not a 
local twist, but an entire change of the 
general direction. 

When a subsequent or obsequent 
stream captures a consequent stream an 
abrupt angle is generally formed at the 
junction. This angle is called the " elbow 
of capture " by Professor Davis. 

Fig. 5 shows elbows of successive 
capture (A, A) of Thames consequents by 
the obsequent Frome ; Fig. 6 illustrates the restoration of the drainage 
as it was before the captures had been effected. And at the base of 
the diagram, below Ashton Keynes, is seen the elbow of capture (A) 
of the there subsequent Thames having taken the Churn. It was the 
continuation of the Churn which cut the Ogbourne Valley to Marl- 
borough. It was the capture of the Churn by the Thames which has 
caused that valley to be different from the Goring gorge. 

The elbow of capture must be distinguished from a right-angle 
bend made by the joining of a tributary subsequent to a consequent 
stream ; and especially from the bend which may be at the head of a 
consequent stream which has been shortened by the successful growth 
of an obsequent, so that the subsequent stream becomes the longer. 
The Upper Kennet, where it turns west to the south of Avebury, is a 
case in point. 

It has been necessary to put forward these general considerations, 
before attention could be devoted to their particular application. Yet 
again, before they can be applied to the history of the Severn, the 
development of the Thames must be noticed. 

III. Development of the Thames. — As seen at the present day the 

-Elbows of capture near 

2 8o S. S. BUCKMAN [april 

area of secondary rocks drained by the Thames appears to have been 
carved out of an original plain which cut across the edges of the 
strata. It would be a plain of diverse stratal composition. 

But when the area was first upraised, there must have been a 
plain of uniform stratal composition. For short these two plains may 
be called " a uniform plain " and " an outcrop plain." The outcrop 
plain has been formed by the removal of the superincumbent strata. 
But how ? 

The usual idea is marine denudation. Professor W. M. Davis 
argues against this (4). He considers the outcrop plain to have been 
formed from the uniform plain by subaerial denudation — that the 

South Carney 

Fig. 6. — Restoration of Thames drainage before capture by the Frome. Elbow of capture of 

Churn by Upper Thames at A. 

rivers cut the country down to a low level : he calls this the first 
cycle of denudation. The low level plain was subsequently upraised 
to become a new high level plateau. It is about 700 feet in the 
Chilterns and about 1000 feet in the Cotteswolds. After the upraising 
the rivers commenced to cut down afresh — it was the second cycle of 

To me the difficulty seems to be this. Before an area could be 
worn by river-denudation to a low level of little relief, the third phase 
of river -development would have reached its possible maximum: a 
most important system of obsequent streams would have been 
developed, and they should be as long or even longer than the be- 
headed consequent streams. 

These important obsequent streams are not found. Even at the 
present day the obsequent streams are not nearly so long as they may 
be expected to become in order to establish that drainage equilibrium 


which must be necessary to wear a given area down nearly to base 

Drainage equilibrium would be established when the distance from 
the divide to the sea is the same in either direction. That would be 
brought about by the growth of obsequent streams. 

It seems necessary to suppose that drainage equilibrium would be 
established before a given area could be worn down to base level. 

I confess that it is easiest to start the Thames drainage afresh on 
an outcrop plain representing a base-level of erosion — a line drawn 
from about 1300 feet at the Malverns to about 700 on the Chilterns. 
Starting afresh, however, means marine denudation. 

In this plain the Chalk would extend to about Witney, the Severn 
valley would be filled with Jurassic strata, the Inferior Oolite extending 
about 3 miles to the west, and the Lias to the Malverns. 

An outcrop plain, produced by subaerial denudation, might have 
been formed in Eocene or Miocene times ; but by marine erosion it 
only seems possible in early Pliocene. That does not seem to give 
sufficient time. All but the latest details of the Severn valleys are 
Pre-Pleistocene. However, suppose an outcrop plain, and consider 
the drainage. 

The plain has a general south-east dip, so far as the main area of 
England and part of Wales is concerned. But this plain seems to 
have been bounded on the south by a more or less continuous and 
irregular line of hills — the anticlines of the Mendips, of the vales of 
Pewsey and Kingsclere, and of the Weald. The consequence was that 
the drainage of what may be called the great central plain was towards 
the south-east. But at the southern end of the plain it was checked 
by the anticlines ; from their north side came streams draining north- 
wards, and hence the drainage was given an easterly turn at the south 
of the plain. Fig. 7 illustrates the position of the supposed lines of 
original drainage and the positions of the anticlines. 

The initiated streams are all consequents; but as they cut down 
their valleys subsequent streams would be started. 

As Professor W. M. Davis points out, the Ock and the Thame 
are both subsequent streams. So is the Thames from beyond its 
junction with the Churn to its junction with the Evenlode. This 
Berkshire Thames was evidently developed before the Ock, by a 
subsequent growth working west from the Evenlode ; it successfully 
cut into and diverted all the Cotswold streams. Evidently the Wind- 
rush once joined the Thames direct somewhere near Abingdon ; but the 
Evenlode, perhaps helped by the Cher well, had so successfully lowered 
the country around Oxford that curiously enough it was able to divert 
the Windrush to a more immediate lower level though giving it a 
slightly longer course. This was done by the initiating Berkshire 
Thames subsequent. 

The Evenlode was a very large river, draining by one branch the 




north Welsh mountains, by the other the west side of the Pennine 


East of it was a south-easterly extension of the Dove. The Even- 
lode soon captured this by sending out the Cherwell as a subsequent 
stream ; and on the other side it captured all the Cotteswold streams. 

Fig. 7. — Original Consequent Streams. 

The Kennet was the other important river. It originally drained 
Mid and some of South Wales. But the Evenlode robbed it of the 
Mid Wales water by cutting off the Cotteswold streams. So the 
Evenlode — including the Thames from Oxford to Heading — was the 
bigger at starting, and grew bigger in consequence, by robbing the 



Kennet. And it is the bigger now ; for the Kennet system was the 
first to be attacked from outside. 

But before detailing the incidents of that attack it may be 
remarked that, on the evidence of the Cotteswold breached escarp- 
ment, the Mid Wales or ultra-Severn drainage had been collected into 
two main channels — the rivers which cut the upper valley at Stroud 
and at Cheltenham. The latter, the original Coin, seems to have been 
the most important; by developing subsequent streams it beheaded 
the Wiudrush on the north at Winchcomb, 1 and the Churn on the 
south at Gloucester, thus gaining parts of the Teme, Lug, and Leadon. 

The Middle Wye-[Frome] 2 does not seem to have made any im- 
portant captures ; but it is surmisable that it gained the Upper Wye, 
while the Middle Wye and the original Coin lost their head-waters to the 
Upper Severn extension of the Evenlode. Thus, in what may be called 
the second phase of the Thames system, the west and north-west 
drainage had been collected into five principal channels just east of the 
present Severn — (1) The valley between Dundry and the Mendips ; (2) 
the valley north of Dundry; (3) the Stroud valley; (4) the Chelten- 
ham valley; and (5) the Moreton valley. Of the streams in these 
valleys the first two joined to make the Kennet, and the other three 
joined, two by capture, to make the Evenlode - Upper Thames. 
Then came the attack from outside — the headward growth of a Bristol 
Channel stream draining to the south-west. 

IV. The Growth of the Severn. — Not to go too far back, it is prob- 
able that the Jurassic rocks which stretched from north-east Somerset 
to Glamorganshire had much to do in determining the position of the 
Severn. Possibly a western extension of the Carboniferous Limestone 
of the Men dip axis — represented by the Holmes — strengthening the 
Jurassic rocks, prevented or rather delayed headward growth of what 
may have been a small river with a strongly tidal estuary ; and this 
might have caused the water to be turned south-eastwards to destroy 
the Jurassic rocks of Sedu,emoor and Bridgewater. 3 

But the barrier was broken down, and the Taff and Bhymney were 
captured. Next the Usk system was obtained. 

The largest and most important obsequent stream ought to be found 
on the south side of Dundry ; but it is not — the Avon on the north 
side is so. That is to say, the longest obsequent has been developed in 
the valley of the later beheaded consequent, where there has been the 

1 This subsequent stream was developed along an anticline. 

2 The river-name in brackets indicates the predecessor which occupied the valley and 
flowed in the other direction. 

3 Probably the Dorset Stour represents the direction of the drainage just south of the 
Mendips, and it originally headed in Glamorganshire, crossing the non-existent Bristol 
Channel. Then the Parret, the Yeo, etc., are the obsequent streams developed when the 
Channel, or perhaps it was then only a south-west flowing stream, headed back towards 
Burnham. It will be seen that the obsequents have had time to become as long as the 
consequent Stour. 

284 S. S. BUCKMAN [apeil 

less time for the work. The probable explanation is that the date of 
capture was not very different, and that the Usk-[Avon] valley was 
originally the deeper, having received the larger drainage ; and so it 
gave the obsequent stream a better chance. 

The Bristol Avon has become the longest obsequent branch of the 
Severn north of the Mendips. In working back it takes off the waters 
of the Kennet, and prevents much westward growth of the west sub- 
sequents of the Salisbury Avon. 

The long eastward course of several Avon tributaries, especially on 
the south side, points to former eastward flow of the Avon's predecessor. 
The tributaries join the present Avon in more or less opposition to its 

After the Monnow lost its head to the Middle Wye it is possible 
that it was itself captured by a subsequent branch developed north- 
wards from its then stronger companion the Usk-[Avon]. And when 
the Usk group was captured by the Severn, this subsequent, which could 
give a much quicker fall, continued to grow northwards to Hereford, 
and captured the Wye group, thus beheading the Stroud valley stream. 
This subsequent would have been developed in Mesozoic rocks from 
about Chepstow, somewhat along the line of the present Lower Wye ; 
but, probably, the difficulty of cutting through Carboniferous Limestone 
prevented the Severn working back in that direction, and it found it 
easier to break through the Palaeozoic barrier at Tortworth, 1 whereby 
it gained the Forest of Dean drainage. 

The remarkable horse-shoe curves of the Wye can scarcely be 
accounted for by this history. They had perhaps been previously 
developed in an earlier river flowing over a low-lying area of Carboni- 
ferous Limestone during Jurassic times. The valley of this river 
was subsequently buried beneath accumulating Mesozoic deposits. 
After the capture of the later stream this infilling was easily 

It was pointed out to me by the late Edward Wilson that the 
Clifton gorge of the Bristol Avon was first excavated in Triassic times, 
because it contains Dolomitic Conglomerate ; therefore the lower part 
of the Bristol Avon occupies an old pre-Jurassic channel. A similar 
history may attach to the present Wye. 

As the Severn captured the Forest of Dean drainage it started 
obsequent streams towards Dursley and Stroud. The Stroud obsequent 
— the Frome — has gradually abstracted the head-waters of the true 
Thames. Very noticeable is the elbow of capture, where the eastward 
working- back Frome has broken into small south-eastward flowing 
Thames consequents, and directed them to itself. 

According to the theory the Frome should not be so important an 
obsequent as the Bristol Avon, because it has not had so much time to 
work back since its predecessor was captured, — and it agrees. 

1 That it thereby followed the strike of weak strata may have been an important factor. 


When the Middle Wye was turned into the Severn system it still 
continued the northward subsequent, which of course may have been 
initiated as a tributary when the Middle Wye belonged to the Thames 
system. That subsequent captured some of the Lug, which, however, 
seems to have already suffered from the original Coin (Upper Teme). 
The state of affairs at this date is shown in the sketch map, Fig. 8. 

Meanwhile the Severn was working its way north-eastward, and it 
successively captured the different portions of the Coin group. It must 
be supposed that before this took place the Teme had developed a 

, ;'/ 



Teme \ ' 


> \ 

' 1 

\ ■: 1 

v '-•.,' 


•-- pia 

Fig. 8. — Sketch map. Courses of the streams just before the victory of the Severn iu the Vale 
of Gloucester. Brought about — 1, by adjustments of Thames streams among themselves ; 
2, by adjustments of the South Welsh streams among themselves ; and 3, such adjust- 
ments in the latter case induced by the headward growth of the Severn. Scale about 
20 miles to 1". 

northward subsequent towards Stourport, and beyond, so that when the 
Coin — into which the Teme then- flowed — was captured, this subsequent 
rapidly developed, and obtained as much of the Upper Severn as had 
not suffered from the depredations of the Dee. If this had not been 
the case the Severn would have taken a more northerly or north- 
easterly direction. 1 

1 North-eastward, somewhat in the direction of the Warwickshire Avon, should have 
been the main and largest stream of the Severn, working along the strike of weak rocks. 
Now it has what may be called a somewhat lopsided appearance — an abrupt change of 
direction at Tewkesbury. So, it will be noted, it had at a prior stage (Fig. 8). That 
the Avon did not develop faster is due to the proximity of sea on east England favouring 
successful growth of the Trent, etc., otherwise the Avon had worked back right into 




Having captured the Coin, the Severn started an important ob- 
sequent stream up the valle) r . 

Comparing the obsequent Chelt with the obsequent Frome, it will 
be seen that the former has done less than the latter, which agrees 
with the date of capture. The Frome has worked back and captured 
various consequent streams on the Cotteswold upland ; but the Chelt 
has not yet done anything in this way. It is in a less advanced stage 
of obsequent development than the Frome. It should have captured 
the present head-waters of the Coin, but it has not yet done so. It 
will do so in time, but by then perhaps the Frome will have got the 
Churn at Cirencester. 

I had the advantage of visiting the Upper Coin with Professor 
Davis. He pointed out to me some most instructive phases in its 
valley development, corresponding with decrease in its volume. There 
are three valleys. In the upper valley there are meanders of large 

Fig. 9. — Diagram of the phenomena in the Coin valley south of Andoversford. The curves are 
only very approximate. AAA, curves of upper valley ; B B B, curves of lower valley ; 
C stream wriggling in its present valley. 

curve, such as a river of large volume would make. In the lower 
valley the diminished river has been unable to follow the large curves, 
and it made two turns in each original meander. In the lowest or 
present valley the river is taking a wriggling course inside the smaller 
curves. I append a diagram (Fig. 9) to show what has happened ; but 
it requires a map with contour lines at every 2 5 feet to illustrate clearly 
such details of river-valley development. 

Diminished river-volume is due to two causes — diminished rainfall 
and diminished drainage area. Allowing that the former has taken 
place, yet it will perhaps hardly account for all the phenomena. 1 
Diminished drainage area is what coincides with the theory set forth. 
Thus the big curves were cut by the large river, which with its west 
branch drained the country west of Cheltenham and Gloucester, and by 
its northern branch — in the Charlton Abbots valley — drained the 
country north of Winchcomb. The smaller curves w 7 ere cut by the 

1 The so-called pluvial period of post-glacial times will not fit here, except to the details 
of the lowest valley ; for the date of the upper valley must be Pliocene. 


river when it had lost all its western branch, and only received the 
drainage down its northern valley. In turn its northern branch was 
beheaded, and its drainage-area further and further diminished by the 
growth of the obsequent Isborne. So the river is reduced to its present 
small volume — a little wriggling brook. 

Having stood on the Chiltern Hills overlooking the Goring gorge 
and noted the details of that scene, it is not difficult, when subsequently 
viewing the Cotteswold escarpment and the old West Coin breach 
from the south end of the Cleeve Hill plateau, to transfer the details 
of the former scene to the latter, and imagine the aspect of the Cottes- 
wold uplands and river-system when its stage of development was the 
same as now belongs to the Chalk escarpment. That is the picture of 
what the original Coin river-system — the river which cut the big- 
meanders — must have looked like before its capture by the Severn. 
Between Cleeve and Leckhampton Hills there was a broad river-valley 
perhaps some 250 feet deep. In that valley a river quite as big as 
the present Thames at Goring ; and stretching away to the west, right 
to the Malverns, there was a broad plain of Lias about 250 feet below 
the Cotteswold escarpment. The Upper Lias corresponded to the Green- 
sand series, and the Lower Lias to the Oxford Clay of the Oxford 
district. And across this plain ran the original Coin, much in the same 
way as the Thames now crosses the Oxford Clay before entering the 
Chalk Hills ; also in this plain there had been developed subsequent 
streams corresponding in all respects with the Ock and Thame. The 
stage of river-development now to be seen in the neighbourhood of the 
Goring gorge was once the stage of river-development appertaining to 
the gorge which now lies west of Cheltenham. Here this stage of 
development passed into a new phase by the successful working back 
of the river Severn. 

After what may be called this Severn victory in the Vale of 
Gloucester, the further development of the river-system may be shortly 
told. It started or strengthened two subsequent branches — one north- 
wards which captured the Shropshire and Welsh drainage, the other north- 
eastward — the present Warwick Avon 1 which cut off the head-waters 
of the Thames tributaries from the north ; and has developed obsequent 
branches like the Isborne and the Stour to further shorten the Thames 
system. While the Thames was thus suffering from the successful 
growth of the Severn, it had also experienced considerable loss from 
other rivers. In the north-west its head-waters had been taken by the 
Dee, Weaver, Mersey, etc. In the north it had suffered from the 
Trent, as well as from the three parallel subsequents, the Welland, 
Nen, and Bedford Ouse. From the latter it had suffered very con- 
siderably, especially in regard to tributaries which enter near London. 

1 From the lie of the ground south of Tewkesbury it seems reasonable to conclude that 
the Avon formerly joined the Severn a few miles south of Tewkesbury, and that the present 
junction at Tewkesbury is a comparatively recent development. 

288 S. S. BUCKMAN [apkil 

As time goes on the Thames system will suffer most in the west, 
by the growth of Severn obsequents like the Bristol Avon, Trome, and 
Chelt, which can give the Cotteswold drainage quicker fall. It may 
suffer in the south by the growth of the Salisbury Avon. 

The Severn system will suffer in the west by the growth of west 
Welsh streams ; and the Severn itself may suffer by the shifting of its 
drainage westward — thus probably the Usk, further developing sub- 
sequent streams working in the Old Red Sandstone, will capture the 
Monnow and the Wye, giving the latter an easier channel than through 
the gorge of Carboniferous Limestone. 

Conclusion. — To prevent misconception, it may perhaps be desirable 
to say that " a stream " may be of water or of ice. The latter will 
follow the drainage lines marked out by the former ; it will not make 
unaccountable changes of direction. Its chief feature is perhaps to 
overflow its valley ; and this might greatly aid the headward growth 
of an attacking rival. 

Many of the statements in this paper may be termed mere specula- 
tion, with very few arguments. It is fully admitted. To pursue the 
matter further, I want much better maps than are now to my hand. 
I require — (1) A clear river-map ; (2) a similar river-map with 
contour lines, and, in figures, the height of all hills and passes ; (3) a 
similar river-map showing the solid geology, and particularly the dip 
of the strata ; (4) a similar river-map showing the drift geology. 
There is of course much to be done in a study of the drift in this 
connection. That has been shown by J. Prestwich (8), J. W. Gregory 
(9), and Osborne White (3), not to mention other authorities. There- 
from can be obtained valuable aid in regard to the chronology of river- 
valleys and the direction of old streams. 

Thus in the Moreton valley, just on the present divide — at the 
head-waters of the Evenlode — there is a mass of drift. It shows the 
Evenlode to have been a big river, that it drained Triassic country, 
that its waters froze in the north. The ice floated down, brinoina 
Triassic debris, and it melted in passing along the Moreton valley, 
dropping the debris endwise into a muddy river-bottom. Much of this 
drift perhaps extended back over Warwickshire, up the original 
river ; and when the Avon broke into this country, taking off so much 
of the original river as the depredations of other streams had left — 
which was little enough — it perhaps attacked this gravel, and has been 
engaged in transporting it westwards, taking it to Evesham, and 
perhaps into the Severn valley. And the Stour may have been 
engaged in retransporting northwards what the original Evenlode had 
taken the trouble to bring southwards. 1 

The Lower Severn has cut down its valley very much since what 

1 This means that the excavation of the Avon valley, below about a 500 feet contour 
line, has been accomplished since the deposition of the Moreton drift. What then is the 
date of that drift ? (later Pliocene, when the climate was getting cold). 


is called "Northern Drift" was deposited. The Upper (Shropshire) 
Severn has done very much more. But perhaps there are two deposits 
confused in the term " Northern Drift " — a high-level drift, and a 
retransported low-level drift. 

The question why Triassic debris is found on the Moreton divide, 
and not on the Chelt or any of the western divides, may be easily 
answered. Rivers flowing from the west of May Hill, Malvern, etc., 
country would come — at the level of the Chelt divide — off Palaeozoic 
rocks straight on to Lias. 

But other queries in this connection will occur, to which answers 
will be necessary. 

The date of an obsequent river like the Frome in the Stroud 
valley can be approximately fixed by the gravels. In the valley just 
below Stroud there are gravels with mammoth remains. And so the 
obsequent valley had been deeply, and it would seem widely, excavated 
before that date of Pleistocene geology. Since that date the river has 
lowered its bed some 40 or 50 feet. 

In the Chelt valley, near my house, are several gravel pits. Up 
the valley there is almost entirely Jurassic, mostly Oolitic material. 
Coming down the valley there is found a greater and greater admixture 
of a quartz sand. Beyond the valley there is wholly sand. Farther 
west there are Triassic materials. 

The sand mixed with the Jurassic gravel is not local — not from 
the Cotteswold Hills ; it is probably from the Trias rocks. How it 
was brought up the Chelt valley may admit of more than one 

There is much to be done with the gravels. After the Severn had, 
as it is supposed, captured most of the western drainage, and had 
started the Avon into the Midlands to see what it could filch, there 
then remains a long period of history attached to the widening and 
deepening of the Severn valley. 


1. *' Cheltenham as a Holiday Resort," Cheltenham, 1895. 

2. "The Cleeve Hill Plateau," Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc. 1897, vol. liii. p. 607. 

3. H. J. Osborne AVhite, "On the Origin of the High Level Gravel," etc., Proc. Geol. 

Soc. 1897, vol. xv. pt. 4. 

4. W. M. Davis, "The Development of Certain English Rivers," Geogr. Journ. 1895, 

vol. v. 


5. T. S. Ellis, "On some Features in the Formation of the Severn Valley as seen 

Gloucester," Gloucester Phil. Soc. 1882. 

6. "Observations of a Cycle Tour," Proc. Cotteswold Club, 1898, vol. xii. pt. 3, p. 217. 

7. W. M. Davis, "La Seine, La Meuse, et La Moselle," Ann. Ge'ot/raphie, 1895, No. 19. 

8. J. Pkestwich, "On the Relation of the AVestleton Beds," etc., Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc, 

1890, vol. xlvi. 

9. J. W. Gregory, "The Evolution of the Thames," Nat. Sci. London, 1894, vol. v. p. 97. 

Charlton Kings, 



XAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 86. 

The True Interpretation of Lamarck's Theories : 
A Plea for their Reconsideration. 

By E. F. Licorish, M.D. 

That Lamarck has been misinterpreted and misunderstood from his 
day to this, appears to me to be due to two causes chiefly, first, the 
lack of true biological and physiological knowledge in his day, which 
led not only to the rejection of his theories by his contemporaries, but 
also gave origin to the second cause of misinterpretation, viz. the 
obscurity and ambiguity of his language. 

Having succeeded, as I believe, in developing his true meaning, I 
now desire to bring my views to the notice of evolutionists, believing 
that this interpretation will make clear many obscure organic pheno- 
mena, as well as enable us to do full justice to that great philosopher. 

In summing up the opinions of biologists on Lamarck Mr. G. 
Sandeman thus writes ("Problems of Biology," p. 153): "It is certain 
that this biologist has been, on the whole, misinterpreted, but, on the 
other hand, it is not easy to be sure that one understands him. And 
the confusion has taken place chiefly over that key-word of his system 
— besoin, or need." Again he states : " It — besoin — probably appeared to 
Lamarck to have a quite definite meaning requiring no further analysis." 

Mr. Sandeman is quite right in the above statement, for, as I shall 
show, the whole misinterpretation of Lamarck is due to the non- 
perception by biologists of the true meaning of this need or desire. 
Moreover, it will be pointed out that Lamarck himself failed to see 
the true interpretation in some respects, and hence the full significance 
of his important conclusions and laws. 

Mr. Clodd has well said ("Story of Creation," p. 93): "The 
functions of living things are threefold — nutrition, reproduction, and 
relation, in other words to feed, to multiply, to respond to the outer 
world." There is, however, one special relation which, although in- 
cluded in the last of those, yet requires more attention than Mr. Clodd 
has bestowed on it, viz. the relations which living things have with 
other living things, especially as regards protection. 

At this stage, it is well to consider carefully the nature of 
functions, because we cannot understand Lamarck unless we keep in 



view the functional life of living things, and endeavour to understand 
clearly the true nature of a function. A function is the use which an 
organ serves. All living things possess organs, the uses of which are 
called functions. Moreover, there are functions which require, not 
only their proper organs, but also other auxiliary organs for their 
effective performance. But functions, and hence organs, vary in im- 
portance. There are certain functions so highly important to life and 
the propagation of the species, that special centres in the central 
nervous system are found to preside over and control them, giving 
origin to the need or desire for satisfying them. Such functions are- 
nutrition, reproduction, and, to some extent, protection, and it is in 
response to the need or desire of the organism that such functions are 

It is doubtful if any one will be found to dispute the importance 
of those functions, or their connection with the need or desire emanat- 
ing from the brain for their satisfaction. 

Now it is held as a truism by biologists that " the function makes 
the organ." That this is so must withstand any attempt at refutation, 
for it is inconceivable that the organ was first to appear, to be sub- 
sequently followed by the function. Stress is laid on this jtoint, 
because the whole interpretation of Lamarck hangs on its recognition. 
Further, we can well understand that the nature of the function, i.e. 
the manner in which the need or desire presiding over the function is 
satisfied, determines the structural nature of the organ. Change the 
method of satisfying the function and we may change the structural 
nature of the organ. But we must also remember that the most im- 
portant functions have not only their proper organs, but also other 
auxiliary organs which are brought into new uses when the methods of 
satisfying the functions are changed. If, e.g., an animal subsisting on 
surface vegetation, etc., be driven to climb trees in order to satisfy its 
desire for food, as it is said the mongoose in Jamaica now sometimes 
does, while the true organs of nutrition will doubtless undergo little if 
any change, yet, if the habit through any cause, such as continuous 
drought, etc., be fully established, the auxiliary organs — the feet and 
claws — will gradually be modified until they serve fully the function 
of nutrition, i.e. until the feet -and claws fully serve the purpose of 
procuring food. We should then get undoubtedly, in the case of the 
mongoose, a change towards a squirrel-like type. We thus learn how 
correlated are different and distant organs in maintaining the integrity 
of the most important functions. 

Bearing the above facts in mind, we are now prepared to consider 
the theories of Lamarck. These theories he condensed into certain 
formulas and laws, which are as follows : — 

(1) "That every change which is at all considerable and continu- 
ously maintained in the circumstances of each race of animals, effects 
in it a real change in their needs." 

2 9 2 H. F. L1C0RISH [APRIL 

(2) " That every change in the needs of animals necessitates other 
actions on their part for the satisfaction of the new needs, and, in con- 
sequence, other habits." 

(3) " That since every new need requires new actions to satisfy it, 
it demands of the animal which experiences it either the more frequent 
use of such a part as was formerly less used, so that it becomes con- 
siderably developed and enlarged ; or the use of new parts which 
insensibly arise in the organism from the needs, ~by the efforts of its 
inner feelings, as I shall presently show from known facts. And to 
arrive at the true cause of so many different forms, and so many 
various habits, as are seen in the animal world, one must recognise 
that the infinitely diversified but slowly changing circumstances in 
which the animals in each race have successively been placed, have 
brought about in each race new needs and consequently changes in 
their habits. As soon as one has recognised this incontestable truth 
it will be easy to perceive how the new needs can have been satisfied, 
and the new habits taken on, if one attends to these two laws of 
nature, which have always been corroborated by observation." 

"First Law. — In every animal which has not passed the limits of 
its development, the more frequent and sustained use of any organ 
gradually strengthens that organ, develops it, increases its size, and 
gives it a strength proportional to the use in question ; while the con- 
stant disuse of such an organ insensibly weakens and deteriorates it, 
progressively diminishes its faculties, and finally results in its dis- 

"Second Law. — All that nature has caused to be acquired by, or 
lost to, individuals through the influence of the circumstances to which 
their race has long been exposed, and therefore through the predomi- 
nant use of an organ, or through the constant disuse of a part, she 
preserves by reproduction for the new individuals which come from 
them ; provided that the acquired changes are common to the two 
sexes, or to those which have produced the individuals." 

Before entering on the further explanation of Lamarck's key-word, 
need or desire, I have to point out an almost fatal error in Lamarck's 
language when stating the above conclusions. Lamarck therein speaks 
•of new needs, but careful consideration of his conclusions has enabled 
me to see that he really did not mean new needs, but that he referred 
under such a term to new methods of satisfying the customary needs 
of animals, as e.g. the need of food, etc. Instead, then, of speaking of 
neiv needs he should have said new uses of parts in order to satisfy the 
functional needs of the animal. This error has been, I believe, a 
stumbling-block to many in interpreting Lamarck. I myself did not 
see the error until long after I understood the true meaning of his 
need or desire. Corrected in the light of this discovery his conclusions 
read thus : — 

(1) That every change which is at all considerable, and continu- 


ously maintained in the circumstances of each race of animals, may 
effect in it a real change in the methods of satisfying their needs, and 
hence new uses of parts hitherto used in a different way. 

(2) That every such change in the methods of satisfying their needs 
necessitates other actions on their part, and in consequence new habits 
involving new uses of parts. 

(3) That since every new method of satisfying their needs requires 
new actions, it demands of the animal which experiences it either the 
more frequent use of such a part as was formerly less used, so that it 
becomes considerably developed and enlarged, or the use of new parts,, 
which gradually arise in response to the desire or need. And so to arrive 
at the true cause of so many different forms, and so many various- 
habits, as are given in the animal world, one must recognise that the- 
infinitely diversified and slowly changing circumstances in which the 
animals of each race have successively been placed have brought about, 
in each race, new methods of satisfying their functions, and consequently 
new habits, including the new uses of all correlated parts affected 
thereby, etc. 

As regards the two laws of Lamarck, they are correctly stated, and 
their truth can be perceived by paying attention to the above cor- 

A careful study of the above conclusions as corrected, and compari- 
son with Lamarck's own statement, must put their signification in a 
somewhat different light from that suggested by his language. 

From what has been already stated, it must be understood that 
what Lamarck meant by need or desire was not, as is usually under- 
stood, an indefinite need or desire, but those needs or desires of animals 
which lead to the satisfying of their most important functions to ensure 
their existence and propagation. I myself did not at first understand 
Lamarck, but on reading of the reversion of the tame pig to the wild 
boar in the New World, the true meaning suddenly flashed on me in 
this way : One of the most significant changes in the wild boar from 
the tame pig is as regards the ear, which in the former is small and 
erect, and in the latter large and pendent. On reading this statement, 
my mind instantly saw the analogy between the ear so modified in 
freedom, and the semi-erect ears of half-tame pigs in the West Indies. 
I had frequently seen on such pigs the effect of a noise : they would at 
once erect their ears and scamper off; and I soon saw that the tame 
pig, escaping from the Spanish settlements in America, would, in order 
to avoid danger, have more and more frequently to erect their ears to 
catch the earliest signs of danger, and that this frequent erection, in 
order to protect themselves, would gradually cause the ears to lose the 
superfluous fat and develop muscle, with a corresponding decrease in 
size, until the ear became like that of the wild boar, and thus efficient 
for the purpose it served in the catching of the earliest sign or sound of 
danger ; and as the modification of character was an innate one — that 

294 R. F. LICORISH [april 

is, in response to the need or desire of the animal — the ear, through 
heredity, would gradually revert to that of the wild boar. And in a 
similar way the tame pig would gradually lose all its character due to 
domesticity, and assume those compatible with a wild life. And we see 
the same gradual modification of ear in dogs that hunt by scent (e.g. the 
blood-hound), the ears, relatively little used, gradually enlarge, and 
become more and more pendent. 

It may be thought that the foregoing has reference only to " use 
and disuse," and the modification of characters induced thereby ; but to 
take such a limited view of the changes brought about, in accordance 
with Lamarck's laws, would be wrong. The laws of Lamarck have 
reference to changes of a far wider and deeper nature than is understood 
by the use of the phrase "use and disuse." The modifications of characters 
produced by changes in the circumstances of animals bear, not only on 
the use and disuse of special parts, but also on all other auxiliary organs 
which co-operate in satisfying the wants or needs of animals, which 
changes in their circumstances have affected. When we consider the 
many different parts or characters which are brought into co-operative 
action when an animal, through a change of circumstances, is forced, 
through its desire for food, to adopt a new method of feeding — when" 
we consider, also, the changes in the nutritive organs, which a radical 
change in the nature of the food may entail — we begin to realise the 
many changes, external and internal, which changes in the circumstances 
of animals may bring about. 

Lamarck's theory, as here developed, explains how, granted that a 
change of habits in any species may produce changes in special as well 
as correlated organs, and may affect, not individuals only, but a species 
as a whole, new species appear in a comparatively short time, owing to 
the fact that all such modifications of characters are fixed through 
heredity, thus accounting for the absence of transition forms in many 
instances — a fact which research proves. 

It may be well to state how, by the Lamarckian theory, the two 
kinds of characters, innate and acquired, are explained. Innate char- 
acters, on this theory, are those derived through the wants or needs of 
the animal, i.e. through the central nervous system. As they are brought 
about en masse they affect both sexes alike ; hence, through heredity, 
they become fixed, and the species is modified thereby. Acquired 
characters, on the other hand, are derived through the surrounding con- 
ditions, such as climate, etc. Their relation with the nervous system 
is only through reflex nerves. When the whole of the reflex nerves are 
affected, as in the case of a tropical sun on the skin, in process of time 
the central nervous system becomes modified, and the acquired character 
becomes fixed or innate. On the contrary, characters such as mutila- 
tions and scars, which only affect a few of the reflex nerves, do not 
become innate, or capable of being transmitted, because the unaffected 
reflex nerves, being in the vast majority, maintain the integrity of the 


retlex nerve centre — of even that portion pertaining to the affected 

The gradual change taking place in the ear of the tame pig, in 
response to its desire to escape its enemies in its reversion to the wild 
boar, is a good example of an innate character ; the gradual tanning of 
the skin, or darkening of the complexion of the Boers of South Africa, 
a good example of the conversion of an acquired character, affecting the 
whole of the same reflex nerves, into an innate one ; the non-transmis- 
sion of scars, etc., a good illustration of an acquired character, which, 
only affecting a few reflex nerves, does not become in time innate, and 
so capable of being transmitted, except, perhaps, in very rare cases. 
Innate characters are voluntarily derived ; acquired characters, invo- 

Barbados, West Indies. 

The Case of Doctor Otto Kuntze. 1 

" Y a-t-il une charlatanerie plus grande que de mettre les mots a, la place des choses, 
et de vouloir que les autres croient ce que vous ne croyez pas vous-meme ? " — Voltaire. 

One recalls the noisy campaign, undertaken by Doctor 0. Kuntze in 
1891, and continued in the following years with a view to regenerate 
botanical nomenclature. By means of a plausible interpretation of the 
Paris Code, and by grossly altering several of its fundamental articles, 
M. Kuntze succeeded in giving to his schism a varnish of legality. In 
spite of his eccentricities one discussed him with more or less defer- 
ence. Slashing and pugnacious, blowing his own trumpet, obstinate 
in his fallacies, he rode, not without bluster, his hobby of priority at 
any cost. Putting words in the place of facts, as Voltaire says, Kuntze 
substituted for definitions, prescribed by the Laws of 1867, his trick of 
identification {Becognoscirung), and thus resuscitated an infinity of 
generic names, still-born according to Article 46 of the Code, applying 
to them his new scale of demi-nudity and that of the fractional priority 
of 50 per cent, absurdities combated by Alphonse de Candolle up to 
his last breath. 

This resulted in letting loose a mass of about 30,000 species, and 
about the same number of nobis. These nobis, according to their 
author, mattered little to him, so little that several times over he has 
declared he could only condescend to make concessions on some points 
of secondary importance, on the condition of acceptance in their entirety 
of all his " reforms," that is to say all his nobis. Besides, his real aim 
was more elevated. To establish an immutable nomenclature ad 
acternum, to cut short all disputes on detail, to render every author his 
due (especially those who have left simple labels) — such a result could 
only be obtained by iron rules, much more particularised than those of 
1867, and provident of endless litigious cases. 

Unhappily for Dr. Kuntze, his neo-code did not appear, to the bulk 
of botanists, based upon " des motifs assez clairs et assez forts pour que 
chacun put les comprendre et les accepter " (§ 2, Laws). Many of 
the premisses seemed arbitrary, many of the consequences doubtful, and 
it was considered annoying that Kuntze wished to impose them on 
the world, contrary to the 2nd and fundamental article of the Laws 

1 By E. Levier. 8vo, Florence, 1898 (Nov.): especially translated for this journal. 



voted upon at Paris. It was considered that the frightful disorder 
brought about by the neo-code would be a hundred times worse than 
the evil which it pretended to remedy. In fact, from the uncertainty 
on the subject of a relatively limited number of names, diminishing 
year by year, thanks to the work of systematists, one falls into com- 
plete disorder, into endless ambiguities, into quarrels over useless 
names, and into envenomed polemics, all which things Article 3 of the 
Principes dirigeants of the Laws counsel one to avoid as one avoids the 
plague. It was noted, with satisfaction, that Alphonse de Candolle, 
whose competence in nomenclature is at least worth that of Otto 
Kuntze, disapproved of many of the theses of the innovator and declared 
them inacceptable "avec des raisons claires et assez fortes pour que 
chacun put les comprendre et les accepter." It was a case of much 
ado about nothing. The great clamour raised around the Eevisio 
gcnerum plantarwm gradually subsided ; systematists recovering from 
their first stupor, once more resumed their labours, gleaning here and 
there in the Kuntzean repertory a few names recognised as valid, and 
passing the rest over to the archives. 

Otto Kuntze did not found a school. No marked and competent 
botanist, not a group of monographers or systematists, either in the 
Old World or in the New, adopted fully, freely, or without reserve his 
rules and his innovations. The Eochester Code, which is the sole 
direct and collective emanation of Kuntzeism, adopted only the most 
unfortunate of his superfoetations on the Laws of 1867, nomina semi- 
nuda, rejected everywhere else, and equally rejected by zoologists. The 
scientific men who subscribed to the nine articles of the Eochester 
Code (and they are nearly all the botanists of North America) rallied, 
by way of revenge, round the starting-point of 1753, scouted by 
Kuntze under the sobriquet of " initium ignorantium" and on several 
other points set themselves in open opposition to their ex-master, who 
spared them neither scratches nor epigrams. We learn to-day, from 
Kuntze himself, that Article IV. of the Eochester Code (Homonyms) 
and the principle of " Priority in place " will compel their authors to 
change the names of 23,300 species. Kuntze, for his part, needing 
not only more than 30,000, but more than ^0,500 changes, in great 
part different from those of the-Eochesterians, the language of flowers 
will offer this pretty spectacle : the names of the Americans will be 
unintelligible to Otto Kuntze, and vice versa, whilst those botanists who 
remain faithful to the Paris Code will have to search out the meaning 
1 if about 60,000 schismatic and hieroglyphical species. Hash, chaos, 
Babeldom — that, in seven years, must evidently be the result of the 
shock given to systematic principles by the Rcvisio gencrum plantarum. 
The indifference into which a pugnacious book falls being the worst of 
deaths, Kuntze judged the moment had arrived to beat his tom-tom 
again. An advertising pamphlet, with flattering notices on the last 
page, attesting the excellence of his wares, was distributed urbi et orbi, 

298 E. LEVIER [april 

to announce the publication of a fourth volume of the Revisio. With 
an alluring title-page for readers eager for scandal, this puff is seasoned 
with some of the tastiest specimens of the last nomenclatural creation of 
Kuntze, aiming no longer at plants, but at botanists. The new nomen- 
clature is codified, very simply as we shall see. There are only two 
Articles : — 

§ 1. All those who accept the botanical names of Doctor 0. K., or 
who accept 70 per cent of them, are honest men. 

§ 2. All those who are against the botanical names of Doctor 0. K. 
are " ignoramuses," " pettifoggers," " confusionists," " liars " 
(Lligner), " infamous forgers," " downright idiots " (" senile " 
and soft-headed), "Jesuits," " sheepsheads," that is to say 
" imbeciles," " idiots " ; better than that, " jugglers," " harle- 
quins," " swindlers," " pickpockets," " dangerous quacks," 
" bullies," and above all " anarchists." 

All these qualifications between commas are culled 2 ja ssim from 
the four volumes of the Revisio. There are some more spicy still, 
but I pass on. 

What a relief to the camp of the " executed," and what a rid- 
dance ! A man of science who gives his reasons and defends them, 
even with vivacity, one takes seriously. One admits, occasionally, 
a stronger word, provided it does not smack of the gutter. One 
inoculates oneself, if need be, with the anti-rabic views of Pasteur, 
before fighting a demoniac hydrophobe. But how can a man pro- 
tect himself against the non-sentient eruptions of a mud - volcano ? 
Let the mud fall down again naturally on the mouth of the 
crater ! This is the way of mockers, and, in such cases, of wise men. 
As regards naturalists, curious by temperament and charitable by duty, 
they examine the pathological side of a case, and discover therein 
reasons for indulgence. 

For some time, the dictatorial manner of the volcanic doctor, 
his magniloquence, his vicious habit of conducting himself like a 
" grande puissance traitant de pair a pair avec l'universalito des 
autres botanistes " (Spitzer), his explosive susceptibility, have appeared 
alarming signs. The suspicion that he had a bee in his bonnet was 
supported by another symptom, nearly always the concomitant of ideas 
of grandeur : the fixed idea of persecution. In fact, in several notes 
in his book, of which one is entitled Falsum infamans Aschersonii, 
Kuntze relates how Paul Ascherson has been persecuting him (vcrfolgt) 
from time immemorial. Here are the facts (Rev. g. pi. iii. note 84) : 
At a flower show, got up by twenty botanists of Brandenburg, a com- 
petition was held as to who could find the most novelties. But the 
victor's palm, instead of falling to Kuntze, was " insidiously " disputed 
by Ascherson. This little story goes back to 1865. Kuntze adds 
that he was by no means ambitious for the victor's palm. It is on 


that account, perhaps, that he has never stomached this first " persecu- 
tion." We note that the " falsum infamans Aschersonii " treats of a 

very minute question of consonants. M. Ascherson had 

hazarded the opinion that, according to the new Kuntzean rules of 
orthographic licence, certain assonances, as alpinum and albinum, were 
liable to cause the rejection of one or other of the two names. 
Thereupon, blue fury of Kuntze. It was, according to him, more 
than an insult, it was a falsification covering him with infamy. 

One sees the morbid outrageous disproportion between action and 
reaction. Eerlex actions in Kuntze are enormous. A mere nothing 
upsets them, just as it is quite enough to tickle the epidermis of a 
strychnined frog to put it in a state of opisthotonos. Dr. Kuntze 
is normally, perennially strychnined. His inhibitor centres have 
forgotten to allay the effects of ascending excitation ; as I say, he has 
lost his moderator nerves. Albinum for alpinum makes him writhe like 
a mountebank ; his anger cannot contain itself, and he has no respect 
for the hardly closed tomb of M. Alphonse de Candolle. Let us quote 
him (without correcting his misprints) : — 

" Les notes suivantes etaient finies avant la mort d'Alph. de Can- 
dolle ; je prefere de les publier sans aucune changement. (0. Kuntze, 
llev. iii. note 20.) C'est une arrogance ridicule ! On a deja accepte 
en part (sic) de mes noms nouveaux dans plusieurs livres botanique 
des deux hemispheres. Que voulez done M. I). C. ? (sic). La plus 
grande quantite des noms que vous croyez erronement synonymes sont 
le resultat des ' Lois.' Et moi je connais ces his, comme vous verrez 
dans mes autres notes, mieux que vous-memc [c'est nous qui soulignons]. 
Vous les avez oubliees et vous faites des lois nouvelles fantastiques que 
vous croyez loyales (sic) parce qu'elles viennent de vous. Mais apres 
la modification et l'acception (sic) de vos propositions par le Congres, 
elles ne sont pas plus les votres (sic) ; elles sont devenu les Lois et 
vous avez a leur obeir aussi bien que tout autre citoyen." 

The police at once ! 

The inverse case is found in impulsives when their amour propre is 
agreeably tickled. Kuntze puts first, in his puffs, a statement of M. 
G. Poirault, in which he has detected some commendation. Let us 
judge of the commendation : — - 

" Ainsi, pour differentes raisons, et par des procedes divers, M. 0. 
Kuntze est arrive a changer 1074 noms de genre et de ce fait c'est 
environ trentc milk plantes qui rec,oivent cles noms nouveaux. C'est 
bcaucovp mais il parait que c'est au plus juste [c'est Kuntze qui sou- 
ligne ! !] " et plus haut, " Urbanisol 0. K. (rempla^ant Titlionia Desf.) a 
je ne sais quel reflet d'Orient . . . et, si des noms comme Schwein- 
fwthafra 0. K., Milllcrama 0. K., Hasskarlinda O. K., avaient chance 
d'etre adoptes, on verrait de suite que le premier de ces genres est 
africain, le second americain, le troisieme special a la peninsule indienne. 
M. Kuntze excelle a arranger les choses le plus simplement et le plus 


oo E. LEVIER [april 

brievement possible. — II est a souhaiter qu'on oublie Ic novateur [c'est 
nous qui souliguons] pour dormer du monographe toute la considera- 
tion a laquelle il a droit." (Joum. de Botaniquc, Mars, 1892.) 

This translucent panegyric has been swallowed whole by the candid 
doctor, who, clumsily and lamentably, has fallen into the trap set for 
his immodesty. After that, it is quite fitting for him to call others 
"imbeciles," "idiots," and "sheepsheads." Need we have another example 
of the cock-and-bull stories, and the laughable illogicisms into which 
impulsives of Kuntze's kidney fall without suspecting it ? 

"M. Levier," writes this hot-headed doctor (Rev. g. pi. iii. p. 51), 
"me provoque dans sa Rectification {Bull. Hero. Boiss. 1896, p. 575) 
au duel litteraire, mais on ne se bat pas contre des idiots, on les traite 
tellement qu'ils ne puissent plus faire de mal, ce qu'il est de mon devoir 
de fair maintenant." (Listen to the method) " II m'a done autorise 
a l'appeler Schafskopf, conformement il a donne plus tard ses jugements 
avec une infaillibilite soubite (sic) sur beaucoup de question de la nomen- 
clature sans en avoir la capacite, tout en usant de sa verbosite inquie- 
tante et de sa fantaisie ; mais, en consideration de l'arrogance impor- 
tune de ce Schafskopf et en consideration de son artifice et de la faussete 
extraordinaire qu'il a prouvees plusieurs fois, il ne serait point injuste 
de le stigmatiser comme charlatan dangereux." 

After this thrust, one would perhaps think me dead, and my evil- 
doings cut short. Not the least in the world. In his picturesque 
gibberish Otto Kuntze goes on : — 

" II (Levier) est aussi dangereux, parce qu'il va empecher un 
Congres competent pour s'epargner la correction de sa regie a part (sic) 
et l'application de ses idees fixes." 

Very good. I can rise up, with all the holes drilled me, in the 
omnipotence of a demi-god, having all the botanists of the world in my 
pocket ! Kuntze, decidedly, has no chance with his " Sheepshead." 
His sharpest arrows return cruelly upon himself, and he sheepsheads 
himself vigorously. But a truce to gaiety ; let us neglect even this 
neologism : auto - sheepsheadification, worthy to be by the side of 
Biscogneauxia 0. K., of Mullerama 0. K., of Pcckifimgus 0. K., etc., and — 
courtesy for courtesy — let us compliment Jupiter 0. K., on his double- 
escapement thunderbolts, good for killing, and better for restoring to life. 

The energy of Doctor Kuntze is inexhaustible ; the manifold 
talents that he displays to make laughter at his own expense, appear 
as a diamond of a thousand facets which each throws its own bright 
flash. Never short of burlesque and acrobatic inventions, after having 
committed Koehneago, Lipponiucllera (blear-eyed Mueller), Cesiusia, 
Pasaccardoa, Radlkoferotoma, and other quips, the imaginative doctor 
has searched further and found better. He has surpassed himself. 
The plum of his pie (after Tripocorynelia tripos 0. K.) will without 
contradiction be the " Trifolium charlatanicum, avec les trois varietes 
levierianum, lejolisianvm, aschersonianum — les types ! — de plus nov. 


var. ? malinvaudianum, veritables herbes mauvaises qui pulluleront a 
Paris en 1900." — " Les nialheureux ! Voila ce qu'ils font du langage 
des ileurs ! " observes, a propos of this trump card, the Journal des 
Dtbats, 14th October. Et nunc erudimini. 

Have we been sufficiently absurd, O my learned friends, to take 
literally, for six years past, the rhodomontade of this old bogie, eater 
of botanists. His savage roarings, his round matador eyes, the dread- 
ful twirls of his cabbage-cutter, hid a humorous and sportive nature. 
Like the street mountebanks who pretend to swallow snakes and 
swords. Scratch the sword-swallower and you will see revealed the 
chalked nose of the clown so dear to infancy. 

But our Old Bogie is not comfortable. Every time he conjures up 
the menacing spectre of the 1900 Congress, he beholds the repropaga- 
tion of the tare that his claws have just destroyed and he loses the 
thread of his ideas. An irritating vision haunts him — that of an assembly 
where one will demand better arguments than " pickpocket," " bully," 
" Jesuit," and " sheepshead," and where turbulent humbugs, demoniacs, 
retailers of pamphlets at twenty-eight marks the volume, will be 
summoned back to good manners. The " Trifolium " proves satis- 
factorily that Doctor Kuntze has still lucid intervals. 

Not for the sake of Kuntze, but for those who may have succeeded 
in construing his gibberish into current language, I have brought 
to light one, or rather two calumnious assertions upon which this pure 
flower of learning returns with a fury and with hiccups of big words 
(fifteen pages of abuse) that denote a bad conscience. 

He does not cease to write and to print that I have abominably 
violated a " contract " between us on the subject of our private 
correspondence. Now there is a unilateral contract and a bilateral 
one. To request some one whom you suppose to be a gentleman to hold 
as confidential a correspondence that you commence, is not a contract ; 
it is a courteous appeal to the elementary rules of honour. M. 
Kuntze, on the other hand, considers a " contract " the following 
procedure : to accept the correspondence, to carry it on to the nine- 
teenth letter, and then to break it off abruptly, with this ultimatum : 
" Je vous defends de publier quoi que ce soit en fait de nomenclature, si vous 
ne faites pas paraitre en menu temps et in cxtenso toutes mes lettres et 
toutes les votres " (this last part of the paragraph is adroitly sup- 
pressed in the Revisio, iii. (2), p. 58, where there is only a question of 
" reciprocity "). M. Kuntze having a lively interest in forcing my 
silence — one sees why — and in stifling my objections, found it quite 
natural to shield himself behind the privacy of my letters, and 
threatened me, in no equivocal terms, to divulge them in case of dis- 
obedience. This trap he decorates with the pompous title of " con- 
tract." Readers of the Bulletin de I'Herbier Boissier (1896, p. 575) 
know in what very categorical terms I have rejected this fool's contract, 
terms which have not prevented Kuntze from republishing the lying 

302 E. LEVIER [april 

assertion that I accepted it. But Kuntze has raised to an academical 
art the art of making authors say things that they did not say. I 
congratulate myself to-day that I did not shrink from the publication 
of some phrases torn from my early letters. They prove that M. 
Kuntze deludes himself and wishes to delude others in attributing to 
me hostile intentions from the beginning of our epistolatory relations. 
When one attacks in treachery and in secrecy (hinterlistig a/ushorchen), 
one weighs one's words somewhat differently. To have reduced an 
adversary short of arguments to this poor military device, to have put 
him in the shameful necessity of raking up confidential letters, keen 
sometimes but never uncivil, to respond to public criticism, to see him 
struggle like a madman in his virtuous role of slaughtered lamb, all for 
words, for halting names (noms a bequilles), for priorities more or less 
shadowy, — such a result is to encourage a third year's candidate in 
nomenclature. I do not grudge Otto Kuntze a real obligation for 
having guided my first steps. One is not born a nomenclaturist, as one 
is born a cook-shop keeper. The eloquence of his eighteen letters 
made me a model disciple, and his comminatory ultimatum has given 
me the heroic courage (Todesverachtung), which I should never 
have otherwise found, to bring before the public our interesting little 
discussions. Tu l'as voula, Georges Dandin ! 

The second folly of M. Kuntze consists in unwearyingly and ever- 
lastingly repeating that I have suppressed in my French translation of 
the Berlin report, made in great haste at Bormio in the presence of 
Professor Ascherson, who took it away to Genoa, the judgment of 
Viennese botanists, favourable to the reform of Kuntze and unfavourable 
to resolution vi. of Berlin. (81 Generic names debarred; among 
them : Mokof Brami, Oureti, Gansbium, Hondbessen, Chocho, Belutta- 
Kaka Ad.) 

M. Kuntze pretends to be ignorant of, or believes the public 
sufficiently badly informed to be ignorant of, the following passage from 
Atti del congresso botanico internazionale di Genova, 1892, p. 104, 
line 6, below : " Un groupe de botanistes autrichiens, reunis sous les 
auspices du professeur v. Kerner condamnc notre projet (iv.) au nom 
de la loi inconditionnelle de priorite, et tel parait egalement le point de 
vue de M. Miiller, Arg." (Piapport de M. Ascherson.) Is this 
clear enough ? Where is the suppression of the unfavourable 
verdict ? Does M. Kuntze now desire me to translate for the French 
public, passages from the Viennese document that he thinks favourable 
to himself? Here is the beginning: 

" Les soussignes ayant pris connaissance d'une lettre de M. 
Ascherson a M. v. Kerner declarent saluer avec plaisir l'initiative 
d'une demarche tendant, d'une part, a enrayer le confusion cause'e dans 
la nomenclature botanique par Vouvrage riccnt de M. 0. Kuntze, Revisio 
generum plantar uin, d'autre part, a completer les lois de la nomenclature. 
Les soussignes se saillirent sans reserve (yollinhaltlich) aux resolutions 


ci-apres (I, II, III) x et s'engagent, dans les questions de nomenclature 
qu'ils auront a traiter, a mettre en pratique les principes qui y sont 

These three resolutions annihilate almost all the innovations 
and all the nobis of Kuntze, since they repudiate his starting-point of 
1735, his nomina semi-nuda and the greater part of his rules for ortho- 
graphic licence. All the end of the report says regarding custom, 
stability of names, etc. is borrowed from Articles 3 and 4 of the 
Paris Code that was not invented by Kuntze, and does not pay any 
compliment to his skill. Dare I say more Kuntzeano, that the gloomy 
doctor possesses " un veritable genie pour tordre et defigurer les choses 
les plus simples " ? God forbid ! I confine myself to noting the 
black ingratitude shown toward M. Ascherson, who, before the 
congressionists of Genoa, wished to draw a veil over the disastrous 
appreciation of the Bevisio by the Viennese botanists, and relieved me 
from making any translation. But M. Kuntze dotes on eulogies and 
treats as compares Jilous (sic) those who hide them from the world. 
He finds eulogies in the Viennese reports as he finds them in M. 
Poirault's bibliographies. It is a little weakness that one must 
allow to great men. 

And, a projpos of great men, granted the prodigious, the phenomenal 
aptitude for work of which Otto Kuntze has given us such startling 
proof, is it not a pity that this force should expend itself on barren 
argument over words and names ? Who can M. Kuntze hope to con- 
vince with his intemperate language ? Is it not better to persuade 
than to abuse ? Once more, it is a disease, and M. Kuntze gives 
fair game to his contradictors (pardon ! to his persecutors), by light- 
heartedly "suiciding" his Bevisio, which contains passim some excellent 
things. He must take care of his temper, improve his naughty 

The atrabiliar temperament, complicated with ideas of persecution, 
only demands attentive hygiene, exercise, fresh air, a cold bath on 
rising, not massage but gentle aperients, very little spice and nomen- 
clature, much bicycle, a bit of fishing with a worm, walks (vasculum 
on back) through fields and woods. Twenty- five thousand hours' 
sedentary hard work, for seven years, to make columns and columns, 
with the aid of dictionaries, of names, nuda and semi-nuda, and 
accepted, and to blow a gigantic soap-bubble which the first critical 
pin-prick bursts piteously — what health could resist it ? And this, 
properly speaking, is not botany. 

" Botany," says a worthy American colleague, " has for its aims the 
study of plants, and not that of their labels." Botany is a healthy 
and delightful occupation — it softens manners. Nomenclature, in the 
method of Kuntze, reduces them to savagery. This parasitic science, 

1 And not sous reserve des principes (unter principiellem Vorbehalt) as Kuntze falsely 
quoted in Rev. g. pi. iii. (2), p. 67. 

304 E. LEVIER [apbil 1899 

this Pulcx irritans of botany, tends to bring upon us the laughter of 
the public. If we cut one another's throats over Clioclw, Gansbium, 
Behdta-Pipi, Peckifungus, Biscoigneauxia, or Bisaschersonia, our reputation 
as scientific or serious men is gone. " Fdroces comme Vadius et vaniteux 
comnie Trissotin," is already scored to our account a propos of 
" Trifolium." We must put the drag on. 

Study and flowers ! especially flowers ! 

[Then follows " Note supple^nentaire (alterations grossieres du code 
de Paris par Otto Kuntze," but these being pure technicalities we must 
refer specialists to the original pamphlet, which, though it is not 
stated, seems to be an extract from some periodical.] 

Regeneration : Facts and Interpretations. 

By Professor August Weismanx. 

My original intention in this essay 1 was simply to give an account of 
some observations, recently published but probably not yet widely 
known, which seemed to me to throw fresh light on the phenomena of 
regeneration. It became necessary, however, to interweave with the 
narrative some general remarks, in order to show on the one hand 
how these and other additions to the data of our science harmonise with 
the views I have previously developed, and on the other how these 
views must be modified in order to bring them into accord with the 
facts of the case, as we now know them. 

We will first consider experiments made by Edmond Bordage, 2 
Director of the Natural History Museum on the island of Keamion 
(Bourbon), with regard to the regeneration of the beak in birds. 
These deserve general interest, since they show that what has hitherto 
been regarded as a rare exception is really the rule, and since thus 
one argument against the interpretation of regeneration as an adaptive 
phenomenon falls to the ground. 

In supporting this interpretation of regeneration I have previously 3 
expressed the opinion that the regenerative power of a part is to be 
considered, not as a direct and necessary expression of the nature of 
the organism, but rather as a capability which, though it may be absent, 
is found wherever it is necessary in the interests of species -preserva- 
tion. The capability of a part for regeneration seemed to me to 
depend, ceteris paribus, on whether the part was frequently liable to be 
lost in the ordinary course of life, and also on its relative biological 
importance for the animal. The weak and almost rudimentary limbs 
of Siren and Proteus, which swim in snake-like fashion, are not replaced 

1 Translation revised by Prof. W. N. Parker. 

2 Compt. Rend. Soe. Biol. Paris, July 9, 1898. 

3 "Das Keimplasma, eine Theorie der Vererbung," Jena, 1892. (English Ed., "The 
Germ-Plasm, a Theory of Heredity," London, 1893.) The idea there elaborated had been 
previously more or less distinctly suggested from various quarters. Thus even Reaumur 
pointed out that the power of regeneration was especially characteristic of animals whose 
brittle body was freepjently liable to risk of breakage, and also of those, like earthworms, 
which are liable to be partially devoured by others ("Meni. pour servir a l'hist. insectes," 
Paris, 1738). In modern times, Lessona and Darwin have developed the same idea. 

21 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 86. 305 


when amputated, but the reverse is true in regard to the gills, which, in 
these forms, are not infrequently bitten off. The latter are physio- 
logically important organs, but this can no longer be said of the former. 
On the other hand, the strong and biologically indispensable limbs of 
the less elongated newt (Triton) have a high regenerative capacity. 

The fact that internal organs not naturally exposed to mutilation 
are not regenerated in animals which show great regenerative power 
as regards external structures is in harmony with this view. Halved 
lungs in Triton do not grow again, but simply close up, and I can 
now add to this the fact that the oviduct and the vas deferens are 
neither renewed nor even elongated by fresh growth if a portion of 
them be excised. The experience of pathologists is also in agreement 
with this, for they report that they have never seen the regeneration 
of an experimentally excised lobe of liver or kidney in any animal, but 
only an increased function in the remainder of the organ — in short, 
there is no morphological regeneration but only a physiological com- 
pensation. On the authority of my renowned colleague in pathological 
anatomy, Ernst Ziegler, 1 I may add that, in man, the power of re- 
generation is possessed only by such tissues and portions of tissues as 
are subject, in the normal course of life, to continual or periodical 
wearing out. Such are, the mucous membrane of the intestinal tract, 
the epidermis of the skin, the whole mucous membrane of the uterus 
with its glands, etc. To these must be added certain tissues which are 
very frequently but not regularly or periodically liable to injury, and 
are at the same time of great biological importance. To this category 
the cutis belongs. In it, however, as is well known, complete histo- 
logical renewal does not take place, but only a partial reparation 
by means of cicatrisation. The scar-tissue — which is also formed 
from connective tissue, but contains no skin-glands, and has a different 
arrangement of the connective-tissue strands — is well adapted to the 
closing of small skin wounds, and quite sufficient to re-establish in 
approximate integrity the important protective adjustments of the cutis. 
Regeneration never occurs, on the other hand, either in nerve-cells of 
any kind whatever, or in the supporting (neuroglia) cells of the brain, 
notwithstanding their great functional importance. All these facts 
are in harmony with the theory suggested, that the power of regenera- 
tion possessed by an animal or a part of an animal is regulated by 
adaptation to the frequency of loss, and to the extent of the damage 
caused by the loss. Hitherto, however, it seemed impossible to re- 
concile with this proposition the case communicated by Kennel, 2 to 
which I have already elsewhere called attention, 3 of the " stork the 

1 E. Ziegler, " Lehrbuch der allgemeinen Pathologie und der pathologisclien Anatomie," 
Jena 1895. But the above statements are based on an unpublished lecture delivered by 
Ziegler in 1898 before the " Naturforschende Gesellschaft " in Freiburg-i-Br. 

2 Kennel, " Ueber Theilung und Knospung der Thiere," p. 18. Dorpat, 1888. 

3 "Keimplasma." (Eng. Ed. p. 125.) 


upper beak of which was accidentally broken off in the middle, and 
the lower one being sawn off to the same length, both were completely 

Until quite recently there seemed no warrant for the assumption 
that the breaking of the beak in birds was of frequent occurrence, as no 
other similar observations were recorded. This case, therefore, seemed 
to indicate that the capacity for regeneration in a part does not 
depend on special adaptation to a great liability to loss, combined 
with high biological value of the organ, but rather that it is due 
to a general adaptation, — to a power of regeneration possessed by the 
whole organism which, to a certain extent, may come into operation 
in any part in which loss occurs, even though the loss takes place 
quite exceptionally. 

This apparent contradiction of the adaptation-theory of regenera- 
tion is now set aside by the observations of Bordage, who observed 
that, in the island of Reunion, where the sport of cock-fighting is 
popular, injuries to the beaks of the cocks are of frequent occurrence, 
and are regularly followed by regeneration. Bordage found that, as 
the result of a fight, the beaks of the cocks were often damaged, but 
that afterwards complete regeneration took place. The injuries were 
partly inflicted by blows with the beak, partly by " un terrible coup de 
patte," but they usually affected at most only the terminal third of 
one or both jaws, — " that part of the upper mandible which represents 
the premaxillae or unpaired inter-maxillary resulting from the fusion 
of the premaxillae, and of the lower mandible the triangular portion 
formed by the fusion of the two bones at their extremity." These 
parts of the beak may be entirely broken off, when regeneration takes 
place, and both the bones and their horny covering are renewed. 

In rare cases, the injuries to the lower mandible are so great that 
it is broken and hangs down, and has to be artificially fixed in its 
place. In such a case, of course, the animal cannot pick up its food, 
and has to be artificially fed, for the regeneration of the lower 
mandible requires two or three months. 

Although these observations refer only to cock-fighting instigated 
by man, they have, as the author rightly points out, a wider bearing. 
It is well known that the males of numerous birds fight fiercely with 
one another in the breeding-season, the beak being naturally the chief 
weapon, and that this is true of storks was known to Brehm, who says 
that jealousy often leads to fatal combats. 

The case described by Kennel can therefore no longer be regarded 
as evidence against the view of the adaptive nature of regeneration, 
and thus the one observation which gave ground for referring regenera- 
tion in a highly-differentiated animal to a general power of regeneration 
loses its force. In recent years, it is true, the renewal of the artificially 
removed lens of the eye in Triton has been cited in this connection ; 
but this is hardly justifiable. I, at least, must own to being surprised 


that the argument based on this case remained unchallenged. From 
Calucci's experiment of extracting the lens in Triton, which resulted, 
as was expected, in regeneration, G. Wolff 1 inferred that there was 
here " a new adaptiveness appearing for the first time," since it is 
" impossible that regeneration can take place in accordance with the 
inherited mode of its ontogenetic origin." The latter conclusion is 
indeed correct, but the former one does not follow from it, and it seems 
to me quite out of the question to bring forward this case as contra- 
dictory to the view that regeneration depends upon a special inherited 
adaptation. It will, of course, be readily admitted that newts, in their 
natural conditions of life, are not liable to excision of the lens, but it 
does not necessarily follow that the lens in these amphibians cannot be 
adapted for regeneration, for at any rate it may be lost along with 
other portions of the eye. As far back as 1781, Bonnet and Blumen- 
bach showed that the eye of newts would renew itself completely 
even when all of it except a small portion (according to Blumenbach, 
as little as one-fifth of the bulb) was extirpated, and the more recent 
observations of Philippeaux (1880) have confirmed these conclusions. 
This regeneration certainly appears to us especially remarkable, since 
it necessarily presupposes quite a different mode of formation of the 
eye from that which takes place in the embryo. Leaving out of 
account altogether the question as to whether we are or are not in a 
position to form a theoretical conception of the phyletic origin and 
the nature of this process, it is at any rate certain that some sort of 
mechanism for the regeneration of the eye exists. But if this is true 
for the whole eye, why should we be surprised that a part of it, the 
lens alone, may be regenerated. A single toe of the newt's foot, if 
cut off, will grow again just as well as a whole leg. 

There is no doubt, however, that the eye of Triton is susceptible of 
injury, and that it is frequently injured in natural conditions. Even 
newts fight among themselves, and I have elsewhere shown 2 that these 
animals, at anyrate in the breeding-season, ferociously attack and injure 
one another. I once put a number of newts together for a short time 
in a small empty glass, and I then saw that the animals attacked each 
other furiously, biting and struggling pertinaciously. " Several times 
one seized another by the lower jaw and tugged at it so violently that 
it would have been torn out if I had not forcibly separated the animals." 
From this I concluded that " the loss of part of a jaw or eye may 
therefore not infrequently occur in the natural state," and I may now 
add that the newt is liable to attacks by water-beetles of the family 
Dytiscidae. I was for a time uncertain whether the powerful poison 
which newts, like toads, secrete from the skin was any protection 
against such attacks, but this is not the case. Large Dytiscidae attack 
the newts whenever they can find no other food, and they eat away 

1 Arch. Entwickclungsmechanik, Bd. i. p. 380. 

2 " Keimplasma," p. 167. (Eng. Ed. p 125.) 


their flesh to such an extent that the newts die. With small Dytiscidae 
I have as yet made no experiments, but it is unlikely that the poison 
serves as a deterrent to them either, and, since they are unable to kill 
the newts, they are the more likely to injure and eat away certain 
portions, such as the eye, with their sharp-pointed jaws. A trust- 
worthy observer informs me that the larva of Dytiscus marginalis 
seems to go to work on a certain system, for it tries to get at the 
newt from above, and to attack it on the back just behind the head. 
Observations specially directed to the point may perhaps determine 
whether injuries to the eye take place. But even then we should 
have no proof that the regeneration of the eye is to be regarded as a 
case of adaptation of the organ to its frequently occurring mutilation. 
In such cases, however, formal proof is hardly attainable ; it must 
always be a question of probabilities. "Who, for instance, would 
attempt to determine how often the beak of the stork is injured ? 
And, even if this were done say for ten years, over a comparatively 
large area of the bird's habitat, we should be confronted with the 
wider and unanswerable question, as to how often such injuries must 
occur in order that Nature may be prompted to effect, by means of 
selection, or in some other way, a mechanism of regeneration for the 
beak. But the mechanism in this case has been established, and for 
internal organs such as the lungs, oviduct, and vas deferens of newts it 
has not ; there is therefore a greater probability in the conclusion that 
regeneration is regulated by adaptation, than in the inference, from 
the renewal of the leus in Triton, of the presence of a general power 
of regeneration, — " an adaptiveness not inherited but primary." It 
will, moreover, be apparent farther on that we have good grounds for 
assuming that an apparatus for regeneration once established degenerates 
with exceeding slowness when it has become superfluous. It is thus 
even conceivable that this apparatus may still persist although no 
longer necessary in the present conditions of the newt's life. 

That such an apparatus is certainly present in this case is apparent 
even from the fact, in regard to which all past and present experi- 
menters are agreed, that the eye of the newt is never regenerated if it 
be completely excised, and that therefore it is not any kind of cells, 
but definite cells belonging to the organ itself, which institute the re- 
generation, as is true in the regeneration of the intestinal canal in 
pupahood. As I showed in 1864 * in the case of Musca, the intestine 
during this phase of life breaks down by histolysis and is immediately 
reconstructed. In 1888 Kowalewsky 2 and van Eees 3 were able to 
demonstrate in the same insect, and C. Ren gel in 1896 in a beetle, 
that the new formation had its starting-point in special cells, fairly 
equally distributed throughout the mucous membrane, which did not 
break down during pupahood, but on the contrary increased rapidly, 

1 Zcitschr. wiss. Zool. 1864, Bd. xiv. " Op. cit. 18S8, Bd. xlv. 

3 Zoo/. Jahrb. 1888, iii. 

310 AUGUST WE ISM ANN [april 

and gave rise to the new mucous membrane. These " primitive cells 
of the epithelium of the mid-gut in the imago," as Eengel 1 calls 
them, thus form in this case the distinctly demonstrable regeneration- 
apparatus of the epithelial wall, and we may assume the existence of 
a similar regeneration-apparatus in the eye of the newt. 

The results of an investigation bearing specially on the question of 
the adaptive nature of regeneration have been recently published by 
T. H. Morgan, 2 and these results are undoubtedly of value, although I 
find myself unable to agree with his interpretation of them. He 
selected the hermit-crab {Pagurus) as the subject of his investigations, 
and this was certainly a very suitable choice, since the experimenter has 
here at his disposal a series of appendages which, on the one hand, are 
very different in their biological value, and on the other are exposed to 
the danger of loss in widely varying degrees. Examination of freshly- 
caught animals showed that, out of a hundred hermit-crabs, nine lacked 
one of the three anterior legs, while none were without the small fourth 
and fifth, which probably serve to fix and support the animal within 
its gasteropod-shell. This result is only what might be expected when 
we bear in mind that the hermit-crab withdraws into its dwelling- 
place with great rapidity when danger threatens, and that the fourth and 
fifth legs must be the first to reach the shelter of the shell. In any 
case, these limbs are unlikely ever to be the aim of an attack, which is 
probably always directed against the three larger and more exposed 
limbs in front of them. As the posterior part of the body remains 
entirely within the shell, the abdominal appendages are perfectly 
protected, and could be injured only during a change of dwelling, or 
if an attempt is made to draw the animal forcibly out of its shelter. 
Accordingly Morgan found that only one out of a hundred specimens 
lacked the second or third abdominal appendage, and there is still 
the possibility that this defect was congenital, and not due to injury. 
The problem these experiments were intended to solve was this : Is the 
power of regeneration graduated according to the probability of loss ? 
Are those limbs most easily and most frequently regenerated which 
are most frequently injured ? and are those which are never injured, 
perhaps never regenerated at all ? 

Experiments in cutting off the various limbs showed that they 
were all capable of regeneration, though they did not all grow again 
equally often, the anterior abdominal appendages renewing themselves 
less frequently than the thoracic limbs, though even these did not 
become renewed in every instance. I need not go into further details ; 
it is sufficient, as far as the main question is concerned, to know that 
all the limbs possess the power of regeneration, those most liable to 
injury and those naturally well protected alike. The relative biological 
importance of the different limbs in Pagurus, too, does not seem to be 

1 Zeitschr. wiss. Zool. 1896, Bd. lxxii. 
2 "Regeneration and liability to injury," Zool. Ball. Boston, 1898, vol. i. No. 6. 

1899] RE GENERA TION 3 1 1 

associated with any difference in the capacity for regeneration, since the 
almost rudimentary first pair of appendages on the abdomen of the male 
were renewed quite as often as those on the abdomen of the female, 
although these last fulfil the important function of egg-carrying. 

These facts appear to tell very decidedly against the conception 
of regeneration as a capacity regulated by adaptation, and the author 
interprets his results in this way, and sums up as follows : " There 
is no relation between the frequency of loss and the regenerative capacity 
of a part : those who believe that there is such a relation overlook 
an important part of the problem. Even if it had been found that the 
parts most susceptible of injury were those most capable of regenera- 
tion, it would not follow that this depended on so-called Natural 
Selection. To assume this is to overlook the fact that unless these 
animals had had from the beginning the power of replacing lost parts 
they could not have survived at all, but would of necessity have be- 
come extinct." 1 

These are astonishing views. One might just as well say that it 
is impossible for Natural Selection to have brought about any change 
in an important part or character in the course of phylogeny, because 
the particular variation necessary to life must have been present from 
the first, since otherwise the species must have died out ! It seems 
not to have occurred to Morgan that the changes in the structure of 
a species may have kept pace with the changes in the conditions of 
its life — yet this is a presupposition of the hypothesis of Natural 
Selection, and is indeed its conditio sine qua non. Hermit-crabs have 
certainly possessed the power of regeneration " from the beginning," 
but may they not have inherited it from their ancestors, the long- 
tailed forms, which possess it to this day and have need of it for all 
their appendages since all are liable to injury ? And cannot, nay, 
must not, these in their turn have inherited it from their ancestors, 
the sessile-eyed crustaceans, and so on through the whole crustacean- 
pedigree back to the unknown annelid-like ancestors of the class ? 
But doubtless even these possessed in a certain degree — probably even 
in a higher degree — the power of regeneration, from which that of 
the oldest crustaceans must have originated, and become localised 
and transformed. We know that the lower worms have quite as high 
a regenerative power, extending to all their parts, as the lower 
Coelentera or polypes for instance. It seems almost as if Morgan 
ascribed to me the view that the capacity for regeneration must be 
built up anew for each species — must be inscribed so to speak on a 
tabula rasa : my view, however, is that here, as in all transformations, 
Nature started with what was already present, and by modifying it 
brought about adaptation to new conditions. The assumed general 
power of regeneration in the lowly ancestors of the crustaceans 

1 This quotation is translated from the German. We have been unable, at the moment, 
to procure a copy of Mr. Morgan's paper.— [Tn.] 

3 i2 AUGUST WE ISM ANN [april 

would thus gradually have adapted itself to the changes in the body, 
and to the new conditions resulting; from these changes as well as from 
other causes ; it would have become localised and specialised. In 
these animals no portion of the body can now give rise to a whole 
animal, but the parts most exposed to injury, the appendages, have 
retained the transmitted power of regeneration, and localised it in 
certain parts, and in relation to definite stimuli. As in the course of 
time the appendages of the different body-segments became more 
widely differentiated in adaptation to different functions — giving 
rise to antennae, jaws, walking-legs, or swimmerets — the predisposition 
to regeneration in certain parts of the body slowly varied also ; and 
thus, not indeed at the same rate, but not lagging very far behind, 
the adaptation of the capacity for regeneration followed the adaptation 
of a limb to a new function. 

Any one who has followed me in my attempt to formulate a theory 
of regeneration will admit that all this thoroughly agrees with the 
principles on which it is based, and will also see that it harmonises 
with the theory of Natural Selection much better than any conception 
of regeneration which has been or could be brought forward. It is 
clear, for instance, that the variation of the regeneration -" Anlage " 
must always take place much more slowly than that of the part itself — 
in this case the appendage. For since Natural Selection consists in a 
sifting out of the most fit, the rapidity with which it secures its 
result — namely, transformation — -must depend, ceteris paribus, on the 
number of individuals of a species which are selected in relation to 
the part in process of transformation. If in a species of which one 
million individuals are living at the same time, nine-tenths accidentally 
perish, there will remain only 100,000 for the selection of the 1000 
which we will assume to form the normal strength of the species. 
The greater the number among these 100,000 possessing the favour- 
able variation, the higher will be the number of the normally surviving 
1000 possessing it, and the more rapid will be the progress of the 
favourable variation. 

If, however, it be a question of the variation of a regeneration- 
" Anlage," selection of its favourable variations will not operate 
among the 100,000 individuals which chance has spared, but only 
among those of them which, in the course of their life, lose the limb in 
question and thus are in the position of having to renew it, well or 
ill. Assuming that this is the case with ten per cent, selection 
towards the improvement of the regeneration-apparatus would only 
operate upon 1000 individuals, and the process of transformation of 
the regeneration-" Anlage " would go forward much more slowly than 
that of the transformation of the limb itself. 

Another fact must be noticed in the same connection. It has 
already been observed in a series of cases, and would probably be 
found to occur in many more if thorough investigation were made for 


the purpose, that appendages are sometimes regenerated, not in the 
present modern form but, in all probability, on an older type. In 
fact, reversion to an ancestral type occurs: i.e. the regeneration-" Anlage" 
has not yet quite reached the same stage as the variation of the part 
itself. Thus the appendages of Blatta, although growing again satis- 
factorily, are then, according to Bateson, provided with a four-jointed 
instead of a five-jointed tarsus, and the same thing has been observed 
by Bordage in the Phasmidae. Fritz Miiller also records that the long- 
clawed forceps of a Brazilian shrimp, Atyoida potimirim, is replaced 
by the older short-fingered type of forceps, similar to that of the allied 
genus Caridina. Such cases might, of course, be regarded as showing 
an insufficiency of regenerative power to replace the lost limb perfectly ; 
but Barfurth has shown that on removal of the four-fingered fore-limb 
of the axolotl a five-fingered atavistic limb grows in its place. In 
face of such facts the hypothesis of a general power of regeneration, 
which restores the damaged " life crystal " to its integrity, is obviously 
untenable. Here the " crystal " is restored after an older pattern, and 
one cannot see why this should be so, since the whole has been no 
more altered than a dodecahedral crystal would be if the point were 
broken off. If, in that case, the missing portion were suddenly to be 
re-crystallised on another " system," it could only be because the 
elements from which the restoration started were, not the remaining 
whole, but particular parts belonging to another " system," or — to trans- 
late into the language of biology — because at the injured places there 
were regeneration-" Anlagen " of earlier origin which came into play as 
the result of the injury. The existence of " Anlagen " is thereby proved. 
It has been said that to explain such facts by reversion is to give 
no explanation at all ; and that such an interpretation, though resulting 
in ranging the facts under a definite category of phenomena, in no 
way elucidates the cause which, after the loss of an eye, induces the 
appearance " of a different type of ancestral-organ. This, however, is 
just what we want to know " (Herbst). For my own part, I think it 
is better not to want to know too much all at once. It may be that 
some clay we shall attain to a knowledge of the actual physico-chemical 
processes which condition development ; but, in the meantime, we are 
many times the distance to Sifius short of that knowledge, and we 
shall do well to content ourselves with first striving after nearer goals. 
Even the simple recognition that we have here to do with a case of 
atavism — that is, of reversion to an ancestral form — is a creditable 
piece of knowledge, since it at least enables us to understand why 
the lost eye of the crab is not replaced by, say, a tuft of feathers, or 
a monkey's tail. Perhaps, however, the idea here expressed, that the 
regeneration-" Anlage " lags behind the phyletic transformation of the 
part itself, may carry us a step farther, always presupposing that we do 
not regard the principle of Natural Selection as " the greatest error of 
the century " (Driesch). 

3 i4 AUGUST WE ISM ANN [april 

Let us now return to Morgan's results with the hermit-crab, in 
order to attempt an explanation of the fact that all the appendages of 
this animal have remained capable of regeneration — even those which 
are protected by the shell in which it lives, as well as the abdominal 
appendages of the male, which are presumably rudimentary and have 
no function to fulfil. 

The cause of this seems to me to be the same as in the case I 
have just discussed, viz. the lagging of the regeneration-" Anlage " 
behind the progressive transformation of the limb — the fact that 
variation, even if it be retrogressive, goes on much more slowly in the 
regeneration-" Anlage " than in the limb itself. The predisposition to 
regeneration is useless in the case of limbs which are completely con- 
cealed and therefore not liable to injury, as well as in the case of non- 
functional appendages : but it cannot be in any way harmful, and 
therefore will not be gradually got rid of by an active negative process 
of selection — as are the abdominal appendages on the right side which 
are directed towards the axis of the spiral shell — but by that slow 
process of disappearance of parts which have become useless but are 
not harmful, which I refer to the operation of germinal selection under 
the influence of Panmixia. I hope to discuss this process more fully 
elsewhere, and, for our present purpose, it is not essential to have 
before us a clear theoretical statement of the gradual degeneration of 
useless parts and of the regeneration-" Anlagen." If it be certain that 
this gradual down-sinking and degeneration takes place with extreme 
slowness, we need not wonder that the predisposition to regeneration, 
which was for ages indispensable to the life of the animals, should still 
persist long after it has become useless and superfluous. From a 
phylogenetic point of view, we are justified in saying that the whole 
group of hermit-crabs came into existence only recently, that is, since 
the end of the Cretaceous period. In any case, we know that a species 
of Urodele {Proteus) has lived an incomparably longer time in the 
caves of Krain, and we need not wonder that in this hermitage it has 
lost the power of regeneration in limbs and tail, while the hermit-crabs 
still possess it in their abdominal appendages. 

There is yet another group of phenomena which stamp the power 
of regeneration as an adaptation on the basis of inherited preliminary 
conditions, viz. the self-amputation of limbs, a process which has 
repeatedly been studied of late years. This was described by M'Culloch 
in 1826, later by Goodsir, and in recent years by Fr^dericq and others. 
Bordage has also written about the so-called " autotomy " of leaf-insects 
(Phasmidae), in regard to which he established the fact, mentioned 
above, that young specimens of Monanclro'ptera inuncans renew the 
tarsi after amputation with only four joints instead of five. Bordage x 
has taken advantage of his recent sojourn on the island of Eeunion to 

1 "Sur les localisations des surfaces de regeneration chez les Phasmides," Compt. Rend. 
Soc. Biol. Paris, 1898. 

1899] RE GENERA TION 3 t 5 

investigate the process of regeneration in the Phasmidae more fully, 
and he found that artificially-caused defects were made good only from 
particular regions. Eegeneration from the cut end takes place only if 
the tarsus or the lower third of the tibia be cut off. If the limb be cut 
through higher up, the remaining portion of the leg is thrown off, and 
regeneration starts from the point of fusion of the trochanter with 
the femur, these parts not being connected by a joint as in other 
insects, but forming a thin suture at their union, and it is there that 
the breaking off of the limb takes place. The same state of things 
prevails among crabs and shrimps, in which M'Culloch has described 
the mechanism which brings about self-amputation of a limb when 
certain stimuli, such as compression or amputation, are brought to bear 
011 it. At this point regeneration takes place, and here, therefore, the 
power of regeneration is localised. Both the capacity for autotomy and 
the power of regeneration limited to certain definite regions obviously 
imply not " primary adaptiveness " (ZiccckmiissigJceiten), but secondary 
arrangements, adaptations to perfectly definite and special conditions. 

In order to learn something of these conditions in the case of the 
Phasmidae, Bordage instituted various experiments. He placed the 
insects with some birds, and observed that the latter — as indeed was 
to be expected — never merely injure the insects but invariably kill 
them outright by pecking at them with their bills. This is particularly 
true of the king-fisher of that region, Acridothercs tristis, which is a 
great destroyer of the grasshoppers and Phasmidae. 

Birds, therefore, are never the cause of autotomy and regeneration 
of a limb ; they are simply among the eliminators of these insects, not 
among the moulders of their regeneration-arrangements. But it is 
otherwise with small lizards. These {e.g., Calotcs versicolor) often 
seize the Phasmid by the body and swallow it at once, and this 
happens particularly often to the larva. But when an insect is full 
grown and its assailant is relatively small, the latter usually only 
succeeds in seizing its victim by one of the long legs, and then it 
tries to work its way gradually upwards with its mouth so as to get 
hold of the body itself. ^It does not bite very deeply, but presses 
the legs with just sufficient force to prevent the prey escaping, the 
insect meanwhile resisting by clinging convulsively to the nearest 
object. The stimulus supplied by the compressing teeth and the 
forcible pulling at the leg may cause the breaking off of the latter at the 
suture, and if the insect then lets itself fall from the twig on which 
it is sitting, it is saved. But, according to Bordage, in most cases it 
does not do this, but tries to run away, and is then easily recaptured 
and overpowered by the Calotes. 

It happens sometimes, though not often, that the lizard catches 
hold of the leg by the tip only, and breaks it off, and thereupon 
regeneration ensues as already described, without the preliminary 
throwing off of the whole leg, which occurs only in response to 



stimulus to the femur — when it is pinched, crushed, or cut through 
the middle : only in this region does autotomy occur. 

Bordage states that the act of emerging from the egg may result 
in the loss of the tarsi and their subsequent regeneration, for it 
frequently happens that the insect does not succeed in freeing one of 
its legs from the egg-shell, which it is obliged to drag about to the 
great hindrance of its progress, until it is finally stopped entirely by 
the catching of the shell on some object. In such a case the insect 
struggles with all its might to free itself, and in doing so not infre- 
quently loses the tarsus. 

Something similar takes place during the process of ecdysis, for 
it frequently happens that the insect remains entangled in the old 
skin. Of a hundred Phasmids nine died in this way during moulting, 
while twenty-two tore themselves free with the loss of one or more 
legs, and only sixty-nine survived the process without loss. 

Obviously, then, the power of autotomy with subsequent regenera- 
tion is here a frequently-used and advantageous arrangement ; but I 
cannot agree with Bordage in regarding the pulling and struggling of 
the insect in the effort to free itself from the encumbering skin as 
the directly operating cause of the fusion of femur and trochanter 
which gives rise to the breaking-point adapted to autotomy. Even if 
this pulling and struggling lasted for a whole day, it is extremely 
doubtful that it could induce anchylosis of the joint ; and if it could, 
it would be impossible that the anchylosis should be transmitted, and 
that it should thus form the basis of a general and transmissible fusion 
of the joint ; for how could a variation of the joint influence the eggs 
or sperm-cells of the insects ? 

The facts communicated by Bordage are especially of value, because 
they show that it is not only the enemies of the insect in question 
that have a part to play in the development of the tendency to autotomy 
and regeneration, as has hitherto been thought : other events are also 
concerned which are of general occurrence and are repeated several 
times in the ordinary course of life, viz. the moultings. It is not 
impossible that the ecdyses of crustaceans operate in a similar way, 
but no precise statement on this point can be made without fresh 

With regard to the phyletic origin of the adaptations in question, 
Bordage supposes that the capacity for regenerating the tarsus, the 
lower end of the tibia, and the whole leg from the suture has been 
derived from autotomy, which, again, he believes to have been brought 
about by persecution on the part of the saurians and batrachians of 
primeval times (Stegocephala). I prefer, on the contrary, to regard 
the power of regeneration as the older capacity, and autotomy as 
derived from it ; for I doubt whether any part could regain the 
power of regeneration if it, or the parts from which it is phyletically 
descended, had once lost this power. In my opinion, therefore, the 


legs of insects must have been capable of regeneration from the first, 
but may have entirely or partially lost this power in many groups, 
or have so modified it that it remained only at certain definite regions, 
as in the Phasmidae. Were the power of regeneration once lost it is 
scarcely possible that it should ever have been regained. 

Autotomy, on the other hand, is an adaptation which might, phylo- 
genetically speaking, arise anew at any time, where necessary, assuming 
that the existing parts were capable of varying and adapting themselves 
to that end. The existence of an autotomic adaptation of an analogous 
though not quite identical kind in insects and in crabs shows that the 
adaptation could take place in both classes, and the presence of such 
an adaptation in relation to the three anterior thoracic legs of Pagurus, 
together with its absence in relation to the fourth and fifth legs 
(Morgan), is further evidence of the comparatively recent introduction 
of autotomy and the much older origin of regeneration ; for the fourth 
and fifth pairs of legs possess the power of regeneration. 

The adaptation for autotomy once gained, the power of regenera- 
tion had of necessity to become localised ; that is to say, the apparatus 
necessary for it had to be transferred to those parts at which alone the 
breaking off of the limb occurs in response to certain definite stimuli. 
In any case, however, both capacities are " Mnrichtungen," that is, 
adaptations of the organism to definite demands made ttpon it by the 
conditions of life, and are not the outcome of primary qualities of the 
living substance. In regard to autotomy this is immediately clear 
because we know the reflex mechanism and the modification of the 
breaking-point upon which the adaptation depends, but in the case of 
regeneration we can in the meantime only guess at the mechanism 
which brings it about. That there is some special mechanism hardly 
admits of dispute. 

In the beginning of the paper from which I have quoted above, 
Morgan casts a glance at my theory of regeneration as an adaptation- 
phenomenon, and not exactly a friendly glance either ; for it seems to 
be the fashion nowadays among the younger investigators to look 
down with a certain lofty disdain upon so-called " explanations " which 
are based upon the selection-hypothesis. Morgan cannot believe that 
the chapter on regeneration in the-" Germ-Plasm" will convince any one 
that the phenomena are " in any way " there explained, and he reaches 
a climax in the dictum, " it seems that the ' Natur-philosophie ' is not 
yet dead." To that I can only answer : It is to be hoped that it is 
not, and that it never will be dead, for progress in our knowledge 
will always depend upon the philosophical treatment of known facts, 
since it is only in this way that we can set up new goals to guide our 
observations, and so find out new facts which will give us a deeper 
insight, — only in this way, too, can we recognise the importance of the 
facts which chance reveals to us. But if Morgan means by " Natur- 
philosophie " merely the degenerate varieties of philosophical Nature- 


1 8 AUGUST WE ISM ANN [april 

study as practised by Oken, Schelling, and others in the beginning of 
this century, one should surely recognise the difference that exists 
between this juggling with ideas and a 'priori interpretation and my 
attempts to gather all the facts together under a common point of 
view. The former are mere fantasies which will never establish 
anything, the latter are, to some extent, central points for scientific 
tasks which will yield to the investigator provisional assumptions to 
be corroborated or disproved : they may even give into his hand 
biological formulae or symbols which, though incapable of full ex- 
planation as yet, may with advantage be included in the consideration 
of certain problems. 

When Oken, for instance, says " the contrasts in the solar-system 
between the planets and the solar bodies repeat themselves in plants 
and animals, and as light is the principle of movement, the animal 
has the power of independent movement as an advantage over the 
plant organisms which are fixed to the earth," no one will attempt to 
make anything of it, altogether apart from the fact that the tertium 
,comp>arationis immobility, as we now know, is not peculiar either to 
the sun or to the plants. Again, Oken, with true prevision, stated 
that " everything organic has come from slime, and is nothing but 
slime in various forms ; this primitive slime had its origin in the sea 
in the process of the development of the planets from inorganic 
material " ; and then the primitive slime took the form of little vesicles, 
and " the whole organic world has as its basis an infinity of such 
vesicles." These are a priori interpretations of nature which by 
chance come very near the truth, but which, when they were put 
forward, could not in the smallest degree further the progress of 
knowledge, because no one then possessed the means of proving them 
right or wrong, or of deriving from them any deeper insight into the 
process of life. But, on the other hand, the " supposition " advanced 
in the " Germ -Plasm," that regeneration may be an adaptation - 
phenomenon and as such depends upon processes of selection, is not 
a final verdict but simply a hypothesis which may give a new lead 
for investigators to follow, as Morgan himself has done. 

Conclusive results, of course, cannot always be obtained from a 
single series of experiments, for Nature's answer to our questions is not 
usually capable of only one interpretation, and criticism is often neces- 
sary in order that it may be read correctly. Thus Morgan's results do 
not afford a convincing refutation of my theory of the adaptive nature 
of regeneration ; they have even, indeed, a bearing which tells decidedly 
in favour of my view. If the provisional conclusion that the almost 
rudimentary abdominal appendages are regenerated less frequently than 
the actively functional walking legs is corroborated, it, at any rate, will 
be intelligible from the standpoint of the selection-interpretation, but 
not from that of those who regard the organism as a crystal, and 
regeneration as an inevitable completion of the crystallisation. For if 


no " Anlagen " be necessary to the occurrence of regeneration, there 
are none to disappear when regeneration becomes useless on account of 
the unimportance of an organ. It is true that Morgan does not state 
that this conclusion is reliable, and it will need a much larger number 
of experiments to prove it satisfactorily. A continuation of these 
experiments might also yield much in other directions. It would be 
necessary to observe the complete development of the regenerated 
abdominal appendages in order to be able to say definitely whether 
they were reproduced in the same form, or whether here too there was 
reversion to an older type. If the above conclusion be correct, i.e. if 
the phyletic variation of the regeneration-" Anlage " goes on more 
slowly than that of the transforming organ itself, we should expect, for 
instance, that in the regeneration of the last abdominal appendage, the 
present form — which serves as a holdfast — would be renewed after the 
pattern of the tail-fin of the Macrura. This is, of course, only a 
supposition, and it is perhaps more probable that in this case the 
regeneration-" Anlage " has followed more closely on the transformation 
of the organ, as it must be of importance that the holdfast should be 
renewed as such. Of course this argument would fall to the ground if 
it were shown that injury to this sixth abdominal appendage hardly 
ever takes place ; for then there would be no reason for the progressive 
modification of the regeneration-" Anlage." But the statistics given 
are not nearly comprehensive enough to admit of any certain conclu- 
sions being drawn from them, and further experiments are much to be 

Let us now discuss another experiment made on frog-tadpoles, 
which, if it be corroborated, will be of fundamental importance to the 
question of regeneration. Before the first external indications of the 
hind-legs appeared, Esther Brynes x destroyed the whole region of the 
body-wall from which the legs grow with a hot needle, and observed 
that perfectly normal limbs were nevertheless formed. The experi- 
ments of Barfurth had previously shown that the legs of young tadpoles 
become regenerated, and had also established the fact, which seems to 
me very important, that this power of regeneration is rapidly lost as 
the tadpole grows. These experiments are quite in accordance with 
the theory of the localisation of the regeneration-" Anlage " at the base 
of the leg, since it must somehow be present at this stage. Esther 
Brynes's new experiment, on the other hand, tends to show that at 
an earlier stage there is also regeneration of the leg without any 
localised " Anlage," and that at this stao-e the limitation of the 
" Anlagen " to the cells of the mesoderm has not yet taken place. 

The knowledge we have already acquired through the numerous 
and variously modified experiments with the blastomeres of the 
developing ovum here receives a new and very precise corroboration. 

1 On the regeneration of limbs in frogs after the extirpation of limb-rudiments," Anat. 
Anzeig. 1898, Bd. xv. No. 7. 

3 2o AUGUST WE ISM ANN [april 

Certain cells of the developing animal contain, to begin with, many 
"Anlagen," and which of these shall become active is decided by the 
position the cells take up in the organism, i.e. through the influences 
exerted upon them by the rest of the living parts of the animal. 

All these phenomena, and also more especially that which Boux 
has called " post-generation," make it plain that my theory of ontogeny 
requires some modification. When it was put forward, two funda- 
mental postulates for the explanation of ontogenetic differentiation 
occurred to me as possible — either that there is a regulated progressive 
breaking up of the " Anlagen " — masses contained in the germ-plasm 
into smaller and smaller groups ; or that the collective " Anlagen " 
remain together in all the cells of the organism, but that each of them 
was responsive to a specific stimulus, which alone could excite it to 
activity ; the former view may be described as a theory of dispersal, 
the latter as one of liberation. I inclined to the former, because, in 
face of the facts before us at that time, it seemed on the whole the 
more probable ; and because I found myself in the position of being 
obliged to make a choice if I wished the applicability of my principles 
of heredity to be tested in relation to all aspects of the problem. I 
found myself in the position which the present Prime Minister of 
England, Lord Salisbury, 1 referred to in his Oxford address as one in 
which politicians found themselves often, but naturalists never — that 
of having to choose the lesser of two evils or uncertainties. The mere 
observer of facts certainly does not find himself in this position, but 
it is otherwise with the theorist who is confronted with the task 
of associating in idea the phenomena of a whole domain, filling 
up the gaps in the knowledge of the moment with probabilities, 
seizin" the essentials of both, and combining them on a definite 
principle into a provisional theory. He must choose between 
greater and lesser probabilities if his theory is to be worked out 
at all, just as the politician must act, if the whole machinery of the 
State is not to come to a standstill. 

This is by no means meant to indicate that I now consider my 
idea of a regular dispersal of the germ-plasm in the course of ontogeny 
incorrect ; it rather appears to me a more indispensable assumption 
than ever, but I recognise that liberation (Auslosung) plays a larger 
part in ontogeny than I had hitherto believed, and that the assumed 
breaking up of the germ-plasm does not, at least in many cases, take 
place at the first division of the ovum, but later. 

It is not my intention to enter more fully into this question here, 
but I should like to emphasise the fact that a modification of my 
theory of ontogeny can in no way react upon the theory of heredity 
in the strict sense. My ideas as to the mechanism of heredity would 
remain unaltered even were I to adopt a pure liberation-theory such as 

1 "Address by the Most Hon. the Marquis of Salisbury," Report Brit. Assoc. Oxford, 


has been recently developed by Oscar Hertwig. 1 I still believe as 
firmly as ever that the germ-plasm is made up of determinants, — that 
is, of groups of vital particles, the presence of which in the germ-plasm 
conditions the formation of definite parts of the organism, and the 
variation of which modifies these parts alone. The conception of the 
germ-plasm as composed of ids is also in no way affected by the newer 
facts, and it still seems to me not only a fruitful but an imperative 

As far as the theory of heredity is concerned, it is a matter of 
indifference whether the determinants of the germ -plasm remain 
together during ontogeny, and are only individually excited to activity 
by specific stimuli, or whether they are dispersed during ontogeny 
into smaller and smaller groups. Even in the latter case liberating 
stimuli are also indispensable, and it does not affect the real problems 
of heredity — the inheritance of functional modification, the mingling 
of parental characters, reversion to nearer or more remote ancestors, and 
so on — in what particular way the individual determinants are excited 
to activity, provided that their existence is established. That they do 
exist, I consider certain, because it follows as a logical necessity from 
the facts of inheritance and variation. Determinants must be present 
because the parts of the organism are capable of individual and trans- 
missible variation, and this is only possible if there are in the germ- 
plasm living particles related to definite parts of the perfect organism ; 
they must be present, not in the sense of the " Anlagen " of the old 
" evolution " or preformation theory, in which they were regarded as 
being themselves the part in question although only in nuce, but in the 
sense of working, living particles which operate during the course of 
development in a definite manner, so that the- part they have to determine 
is thereby produced. 

It is only the theory of ontogeny which is affected by the fresh 
facts, not that of heredity. The experimental determination of the 
prospective importance of the blastomeres which we owe to Koux, 
Driesch, Wilson, Chabry, and so many others, and the now indubitable 
process of post -generation as formulated by Eoux, necessitate the 
assumption that the blastomeres commonly contain all the determinants 
within themselves, and that the cells of the external and middle germinal 
layers retain many of them for a long time. But it by no means 
follows that a pure liberation-theory (Auslosungs-Theorie), like that 
put forward by Oscar Hertwig, is correct. It is much more probable 
that at some period of development, at least in the case of higher 
animals, a limitation in number of the " Anlagen " takes place in the 
cells during ontogeny, and this may often go so far that they eventually 
only contain the one " Anlage " which determines their differentiation. 
I cannot agree with the statement in Hertwig's latest book, in which the 
supposition is made that all the cells in ontogeny contain the complete 

1 "Die Zelle und die Gewebe " (II.), Jena, 1898. 

22 NAT. SC. VOL. XIV. NO. 46. 


germ-plasm, and that it depends solely on the stimuli of position and the 
nature of the particular cell-body itself, which of the many " Anlagen " 
of the nuclear substance will undergo development. I may, indeed, 
have laid too little emphasis on the role of the liberating stimuli, and 
bestowed my attention too exclusively on the " Anlagen," but such an 
extreme liberation-theory as that of Hertwig seems to me to overshoot 
the mark on the other side. 

If what should be formed at a particular part of the organism 
depended solely on the liberating stimuli, and the " Anlagen " were 
everywhere the same, the same organ would necessarily invariably be 
formed at any given place ; and it would be impossible that — as has 
many times been observed — an antenna should grow out in place of 
an insect's leg (Wheeler), or a leg instead of an antenna (Kraatz), or 
that instead of an abdominal appendage in the common crab {Cancer 
pagurus) a walking leg should appear (Bethe), or that antennae should 
replace the amputated eye-stalks in shrimps (Herbst), or that four- 
jointed tarsi should replace five-jointed ones (Bateson, Bordage). 

In regard to a few of these cases, one might seek to evade the 
conclusion by the unverifiable statement that the liberating stimuli are 
altered by the previous occurrence of injury. This may be so, but 
still no explanation follows thereupon as to why, for instance, a four- 
jointed tarsus is formed in place of a five-jointed one, since the four- 
jointed tarsi of the ancestors did not result from amputation. I do 
not see how it is here possible to avoid the assumption of different 
" Anlagen " which can be liberated by a similar stimulus ; and thus 
that the " Anlage " is the main thing and the stimulus only of more 
general nature ; the stimulus only determining that something is to be 
formed, the " Anlage " deciding what that something is. 

I hope to discuss this question more fully on some other occasion, 
and therefore here only wished to indicate my position in regard to 
some of the facts and opinions which have come to light since the 
publication of the " Germ-Plasm." It will probably be necessary to 
make a compromise between the theory of dispersal and that of 
liberation, though it may not yet be possible even to sketch its outlines 
with certainty. 

With regard, however, to the theory of regeneration, which is so 
closely dependent on that of ontogeny, the explanation of the renewal 
of a lost part is easy enough if we regard the complete germ-plasm as 
present in every cell ; every " Anlage " could then come into operation 
at any place if we assume their specific liberation-stimuli to be present. 
But the effectiveness of the theory breaks down when we attempt to 
explain why, nevertheless, regeneration in so many cases does not take 
place ; — why, for instance, internal and external parts of the same 
newt should behave so differently in this respect. If the injury 
supplies the specific liberation-stimulus, why does it not liberate the 
corresponding " Anlagen " in internal parts also ? There seems to be 


only one possible answer to this question, viz. because the " Anlagen " 
are not there. 

The facts recently established certainly indicate that, at any rate 
among many animals, the embryo and the young organism possess 
many cells whose wealth of " Anlagen " can, under the determining 
guidance of the whole, bring about the regeneration of parts in different 
directions ; but it seems to me equally certain that, as the organism 
approaches maturity, the number of such cells gradually decreases, and 
the potentiality of their " Anlagen " becomes gradually more restricted, 
until, finally, many cells are only able to reproduce their like. But 
how far this limiting of the "' Anlagen " goes, and how far the cell 
contains inactive " Anlagen " (" Neben-Determinanten "), is obviously 
determined by the necessities of the case, and depends on adaptation ; 
in so far, at least, it will hardly be disputed that the capacity for 
the regeneration of parts is regulated by adaptation. It is impossible 
to say whether we must not go much farther than this, and regard the 
power of the blastomeres to produce the whole as a very ancient but 
nevertheless secondary phenomenon, depending on adaptation to injury. 
But if we bear in mind how the differentiation between homoplastids 
and heteroplastids occurs in the Volvocidae, it is evident that the first 
separation of the germ-cells and the body-cells in this case cannot be 
referred to different liberating stimuli, but must consist in a separation 
of the " Anlagen " ; the latter must therefore be the primary arrange- 
ment, and the equipment of the blastomeres with the whole germ-plasm 
only a secondary acquisition. We thus once more arrive at the view, 
adopted both by Eoux and myself, of " reserve germ-plasm " — of 
supplementary germ-plasm in general, — with which Barfurth also agrees. 

To this important point, too, I hope to return at a future time, 
when I intend to reply to the factual criticisms of my opponents. 
This short essay owes its origin to purely external reasons, and I have 
written it rather for the supporters than for the opponents of my views, 
and rather to show that the recently established facts harmonise well 
with the fundamental principles of my theory than to meet the objec- 
tions of my antagonists in detail. To reply to the many invectives, 
the sarcasm and derision which have been showered upon me in such 
overflowing measure since the publication of the " Germ-Plasm " seems 
to me quite superfluous, for I regard such utterances as a not exactly 
desired, but yet a not altogether unsatisfactory sign, that the less noble 
emotions of human nature — envy, ill-will, and self-advertisement — have 
found cause to direct themselves against the results of my work. 

To one reproach of a general and impersonal kind I should like to 
reply here, as it was first raised by one who is now dead, but has been 
urged again and again by those who wished to bring discredit on my 
views — the reproach that these views have no stability and that they 
change so ceaselessly that no one can know what my real opinion is. 
As a matter of fact, my ideas have changed on many points in the 

324 AUGUST WE ISM ANN [apeil 

course of the score of years which have almost elapsed since I first 
brought them forward, simply because I did not then know all that I 
know now. I may be permitted to give an example. 

In 1885 I directed the attention of biologists to the importance of 
the " polar bodies " in relation to the theory of heredity. The persist- 
ence with which these bodies, in themselves apparently insignificant, 
appear throughout the whole animal kingdom seemed to me to indicate 
that they played an important physiological role which must be associated 
with their liberation from the egg, and in connection with the theory 
of the continuity of the germ -plasm — then only developed in rough 
outline — I suggested that they might have to do with the extrusion of 
the " ovogenetic " idioplasm, that is, with the removal of the nuclear 
substance determining the histological structure of the egg-cell. 

This supposition of mine — my first hypothesis concerning the im- 
portance of the polar bodies in relation to the theory of heredity — was 
opposed to the opinions expressed earlier by Minot and E. van Beneden, 
who regarded the immature ovum as a hermaphrodite cell which became 
female only after the extrusion of its male elements, the polar bodies. 
Observation showed me that even parthenogenetic eggs form polar 
bodies, and consequently Minot's hypothesis was overthrown, while my 
own was strengthened. But further investigations by Blochmann and 
myself led to the discovery that parthenogenetic eggs only form one 
polar body, while those which require fertilisation always form two ; 
and then, supported by E. van Beneden's fundamental discovery of the 
numerical equality of the paternal and maternal chromosomes in the 
fertilised egg, I modified my first hypothesis so far as to suggest that 
the " ovogenetic " idioplasm is expelled in one of the polar bodies, while 
the other implies a reduction of the ancestral germ-plasms, or ids as I now 
call them. The necessity of this process I attempted to prove, and 
postulated for its accomplishment a special mode of nuclear division, 
a reducing division, in which the usual longitudinal splitting of the 
chromosomes is suppressed, so that only half the number of these migrate 
to each daughter-cell. What was at the time only a theoretical con- 
clusion merely indicated by the observations then on record and not 
deducible from or capable of proof by them, has been fully justified by 
later investigations. There is a reducing division. 

In this second hypothesis, however, an error was also involved, for 
Boveri's l observations on the egg of Ascaris have shown that the 
chromosomes expelled from the ovum in the first polar body are not 
essentially different from those remaining in it, because in certain 
circumstances they are interchangeable with them. I therefore altered 
my second hypothesis to a third, according to which both divisions of 
the ripening ovum together imply a reduction in the number of ids, 

1 "Zellenstudien. Uber das Verhalten der chrouiatischen Kernsubstanz bei der Bildung 
der Richtungskorper und bei der Befruchtung, " Jenaische Zeitschr. f. Naturwiss. 1890, 
Bd. xxiv. p. 314. 


and this position I still maintain. Previously to this, however, I had 
come to the conclusion, based upon the theory of the reducing division, 
that a corresponding process of reduction must take place in the male 
cell, and some time later this was actually demonstrated by Oscar 
Hertwig. It is well known that during the succeeding years many 
excellent observers have carried on this difficult investigation on the 
processes of reduction in male and female germ-cells, and I need only 
mention the names of Boveri, Henking, vom Eath, Euckert, Hacker, 
Korschelt, Ischikawa, and van der Stricht, and in the domain of botany, 
Strasburger, Ischikawa, Calkins, Belajeff, and Guignard. Thus the 
conclusion has been gradually more and more firmly established that 
in the sex-cells of animals, as well as in those of plants, a reduction of 
the number of chromosomes takes place, and that in the majority of 
carefully investigated cases this process is brought about in the same 
manner, that is, by a peculiar form of nuclear division which occurs 
only in this connection. Eecently, too, increasingly reliable evidence 
has been furnished that a similar reducing nuclear division precedes 
conjugation in unicellular plants and animals (Maupas, E. Hertwig, 
Schaudinn, and others). 1 Isolated observations are always cropping 
up which seem to necessitate different interpretations ; but we may 
expect, as has often happened before, that more thorough investigations 
will succeed in removing the discrepancies in some way or other. A 
review of the facts now established cannot but convince us that 
for a large series of organisms the reduction -hypothesis is already 

This advance in our knowledge was only possible on the basis of 
changing theories, one growing out of another, and it would be absurd 
to object to such modifications. It seems to me, on the contrary, that 
the great value of hypotheses and theories is just that they do bring 
about the necessity of modifying them. They form the indispensable 
ladder by which investigation descends step by step into the depths of 
the biological mine until it comes upon a new vein of ore — fresh guid- 
ing facts — when it pauses a while, exploring and exploiting them in all 
directions, and finally by proving them secures a basis of operations 
from which a new ladder may be sunk to lower depths. 

One of my critics has compared my " theories " to " towns in the 
Far West," the houses of which are barely erected when they are 
taken down again to be rebuilt farther out in the unknown land. I 
accept the simile, provided it be not forgotten that the first house of 
the advancing pioneer must remain standing and in use for a time 
before the region beyond becomes accessible to further colonisation. 

I admit that I have not only made unavoidable mistakes, but also 
some which might perhaps have been avoided, and that I have 

1 Cf. the excellent review and critical summary of facts recently given by Hacker ( Verh. 
Deutsche zool. Gesellsch. Jena, 1898) under the title " Uber vorbereitende Theilnngsvorgange 
bei Thieren und Pflanzen," p. 95. 


occasionally over-estimated the bearing of a newly acquired item of 
knowledge in the joy at its discovery, — that is, I have looked at it 
from too one-sided a point of view. This was the case in my paper 
on the meaning of sexual reproduction, in which I represented this 
factor in individual variation as its real and main root, while it is, I 
now believe, only the indispensable means of mingling these variations 
and of their persistent renewal. It is immaterial whether I myself or 
one of my sharp-sighted critics was the first to discover this mistake ; 
but in any case it gave me occasion to sink a new ladder into the 
mine of investigation, to bore for the deeper ore-stratum of the source 
of variation, and to find it in the minute local fluctuations in nutrition 
which strive to disturb the equilibrium of the system of determinants 
in the germ-plasm. In this way I arrived at the theory of " germinal 
selection," which, although recognised only by a few — publicly, I 
believe, only by Emery — as a justifiable hypothesis, will, I should like 
to believe, yield greater results in the future. 

It has also been said that I have carried my theories much too 
far, and have lost myself in details and speculations. Ironical 
admiration has been bestowed on the courage which enabled me to 
apply my theories to particular problems, and which did not shrink 
from the many auxiliary hypotheses necessitated by applying the 
main theories to special questions. To speak thus is to overlook the 
fact that nothing but persistent pushing of a guiding hypothesis to its 
furthest limits leads to a recognition of its defects and weaknesses, and 
so paves the way for farther progress. It is quite easy to set up 
theoretical principles, to propound a " theory of heredity " or of 
ontogeny, if one confines oneself to elucidating only the most general 
phenomena. The test of the usefulness of theories lies in applying 
them to special phenomena ; it then becomes apparent whether and 
where they touch improbabilities, and where new facts are required to 
improve them or to replace them by others. It is not the joy of 
" explaining everything," but the desire to see them tested on all sides 
and to give them freely into the hands of my critics, that has led me 
to apply my principles of explanation to particular problems and to 
carry them as far as possible. This has been well understood by Yves 
Delage 1 — by far the most objective of my hostile critics- — in the following- 
passage : " Enfin il faut savoir gre a, Weismann d'avoir etc" jusqu'au 
bout des consequences logiques de son systeme. 11 a tcnu a tout 
expliquer, et il n'a pas recule" devant la necessite de compliquer sa 
conception fondamentale, si simple et cependant deja si feconde, pour 
rendre compte des faits de bourgeonnement, de regeneration, de 
polymorphisme, etc. II aurait, en evitant d'en parler, comme tant 
d'autres, echappe a de graves objections ; il a prefere les subir que de 
reculer devant les difricultes." 

If it be asked why I did not keep silence altogether if many of 

1 "La structure du protoplasma et les theories sur l'heredite," etc., Paris, 1895, p. 708. 

1899] REGENERA TION 3 2 7 

my explanations were not satisfactory even to myself, I can only give 
the simple reason that the fundamental basis of the theory appeared 
to me useful, and a fully worked-out theory seemed necessary to raise 
new questions and lead to further progress. In the complicated 
domain of biology, and particularly in that of heredity, it is only 
through theorising that new questions are raised, and the path to the 
discovery of new facts pointed out. 

The assumption of the existence of biophors and determinants 
seems to me as indispensable and quite as justifiable here as the 
assumption of atoms and molecules in the domain of chemistry. 
Modern philosophy would, indeed, be in the right in rejecting the idea 
of philosophical atoms as minute indivisible particles ; the chemical 
atom, on the other hand, is so far real, as it is the expression of the 
relative weights in which the so-called elements combine together to 
form molecules. Without the symbol of chemical atoms and molecules, 
the whole marvellous deepening of chemical knowledge which the 
century now drawing to its close has brought about would have been 
impossible. In the same way, I believe that a deeper penetration into 
the problems of biology, or at least into that of heredity, will only be 
possible through the assumption of the symbols of biophors, of ids, 
and above all of determinants ; and here also, when, with the help of 
these symbols, we formulate our questions to Nature, we shall be 
dealing, not with mere fanciful images, but with realities, just in the 
same sense in which chemical atoms and molecules are realities. 

In my opinion, the belief that biology does not require the 
guidance of theory is a great and widespread error. Within a very 
limited range, an individual investigator may, without doubt, make 
progress in certain directions without any conscious guiding theories — 
that is, so to speak, with latent theories. In truth, however, if his 
research be at all far-reaching, it is always guided by hypotheses, the 
confirmation or refutation of which he seeks. But when an attempt is 
made to investigate a wide domain embracing many phenomena, 
unconscious assumptions are no longer sufficient ; but definite and 
well-thought-out hypotheses belonging to a theoretical system are 
necessary. This is what I have attempted to supply with my theory 
of heredity, — not a structure calculated for eternity, but one which 
should serve as a solid nucleus, a crystallisation-point, for further 
research, and around which new acquisitions in knowledge should 
group themselves for a time. I do not believe that any one now 
living could think out and elaborate a theory of heredity which should 
withstand the course of time without requiring modification. The 
scientific general-staff 1 is now so large, that no hypothesis can remain 
long untested ; on the contrary, every new idea is at once seized hold 
of by an army of investigators who seek, if possible, to refute it, or at 
least to corroborate it. I do not understand how it can be seriously 
urged at such a time, as an objection to a theory in the complicated 

328 AUGUST WEISMANN [april 1899 

field of Nature and Life, that it has been modified according to new 
discoveries, which it has itself in part brought about. That it should 
be capable of such modification without giving up its fundamental 
principles seems to me an advantage, and I trust that in the future, 
even more than in the past, the theory of the germ-plasm will do good 
service in widening our knowledge of heredity. 

zoologisches i> t stitut, 


Geotaxis in Animals. Julia B. Platt. " On the Specific Gravity of 
Spirostomum, Paramaecium, and the Tadpole in relation to the Problem of 
Geotaxis," Amer. Naturalist, xxxiii. 1899, pp. 31-38. The tendency that 
some Infusorians have to collect near the surface of the water in which they 
live has been regarded as a reaction to the force of gravity, — a negative geotaxis. 
To test this Miss Platt has followed Dr. C. B. Davenport's suggestion of alter- 
ing the density of the fluids. If F. Schwartz was right in his theory of negative 
geotaxis, the negatively geotactic organism should become positively geotactic in 
solutions of greater specific gravity than its own, supposing the animal to be 
normally heavier than water. Miss Platt determined the specific gravity of living 
Spirostomum, and dead Paramaecium, — both about 1*017, — but got no positive 
results in regard to reaction to gravity as far as these Infusorians are concerned. 
" Small tadpoles that are negatively geotactic do not become positively geotactic 
when placed in solutions heavier than their own specific gravity, as one would 
expect were their upward motion in direct response to the action of gravity on 
the organism as a whole. These tadpoles show constant negative geotaxis in 
water, in a solution of their own specific gravity, and in heavier solutions." 

Freshwater Protozoa. Robert Lauterborn. " Protozoen-Studien, IV. 
Theil. Flagellaten aus dem Gebiete des Oberrheins," Zeitschr. wiss. Zool. lxv. 
1899, pp. 369-391, 2 pis. An impulse to the. study of freshwater Protozoa 
should surely be found in the researches of Dr. Lauterborn, which show how 
little we know as yet of the numerous beautiful forms inhabiting ponds and lakes 
and river-beds. In a short time and within a limited area he discovered five 
new genera of Flagellata. 

Regeneration in Tubifex. H. Haase. " Ueber Regenerationsvorgange 
bei Tubifex rimdorum Lam. mit besonderer Beriicksichtigung des Darmkanals 
und Nervensystems," Zeitschr. wiss. Zool. lxv. 1898, pp. 211-256, 2 pis. 11 figs. 
There is less regenerative capacity in Tubifex rivulorum than in many related 
Annelids. The posterior part is regrown more readily than the anterior end, 
where in fact never more than three segments are replaced. Except a small 
most anterior portion the regenerated fore-gut is endodermic, and not ectodermic 
as in normal development. On the other hand, the hind-gut is regenerated 
from the ectoderm just as it is formed in the embryo. The regenerated ventral 
nerve cord arises from an unpaired proliferation, but the supra-oesophageal 
ganglion has a paired origin which is, however, to begin with ventral in 

Parthenogenesis in Stick-Insect. Stadelmann. "Ueber einen Fall 
von Parthenogenese bei Bacillus rossius F.," SB. Ges. JVatur. Freunde Berlin, 
1898, pp. 153-155. The occurrence of two successive parthenogenetic genera- 
tions is recorded, thus confirming the previous observations of Dominique, 
Bolivar, and Krauss. The parthenogenetic ova developed into females only. 



FRESH FACTS [april 1899 

Bird-Catching Spiders. R. I. Pocock. " The Genus Poecilotheria : Its 
Habits, History, and Species," Ann. Nat. Hist. iii. 1899, pp. 82-96, 1 pi. 
This genus is a representative of that great and almost cosmopolitan group of 
spiders which was formerly included under the comprehensive title Mygale, 
which still persists in many books. The observations of Madame Merian and 
Mr. Bates have formed the slender foundation for the widespread and 
sensational belief that the staple article of food of these spiders consists of 
small birds. " As a matter of fact, there is no doubt that they feed almost 
entirely upon insects ; but they will certainly also kill and devour any living 
animal they are powerful enough to overcome. The species of Poecilotheria are 
tree-living forms, and their colouring is adapted on the upper surface for 
protective concealment on bark overgrown with lichen and moss. The colour 
of the under side is startlingly different, is exposed when they rear themselves 
on their hind legs, and is probably of warning significance. They also possess 
a stridulating organ between the mandible and the palp. Eight species are 
described from Ceylon and S. India." 

Selective Action of Frost. T. D. A. Cockerell. " Vernal Phenomena 
in the Arid Region," Amer. Naturalist, xxxiii. 1899, pp. 39-43. From 
observations on plants and bees made by himself and other workers at the 
Mesilla Park Experiment Station, New Mexico (altitude 3800 feet), Prof. 
Cockerell concludes that "throughout the arid region, where the sky is clear 
and the radiation great, the development of plants and insects is controlled 
largely by the distribution of frosts throughout the year. In the course of 
natural selection the native species (except such as are frost-proof) have learned 
not to appear or develop until the clanger of frost is over." There is warmth 
enough, as is shown by the behaviour of introduced fruit-trees which rush into 
bloom and get nipped. The horticulturist's device must be to select late 
varieties which will escape the frosts. 

Dimorphism. E. G. Conklin. " Environmental and Sexual Dimorphism 
in Crepidula," Proc. Ac. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia, 1898, pp. 435-444, 3 pis. 
In various species of this genus of sedentary gasteropods there is " environmental 
polymorphism," i.e. the form and colour differ according to the nature of the 
shells on which the animals live. In Crepidula plana there are dwarf and 
giant forms, and the difference in size is associated with a difference in the 
number, not in the size, of the component cells. The dwarfing is a " modifica- 
tion " and not inheritable. In the same species sexual dimorphism is also well 
marked, the average female being about fifteen times the size of the male. 

Detection of a Robber Ant. E. Wasmann. " Lasius fuliginosus als 
Raubameise," Zool. Anzeig. xxii. 1899, pp. 85-87. This glossy black wood-ant, 
which finds its usual food-supply in aphides, has not hitherto been known as 
a robber. But Wasmann has detected it in the act of plundering the nest of 
Myrmica laevinodis and carrying off the larvae and pupae. The observer does 
not believe, however, that we have here any hint as to the origin of a mixed 
colony. The captives are simply devoured. 



In the Australian Bush and on the Coast of the Coral Sea, being the Ex- 
periences and Observations of a Naturalist in Australia, New Guinea, 
and the Moluccas. By Dr. Richard Semon. Roy. 8vo, pp. xvi. + 
552, with 86 figures and 4 maps, London : Macmillan and Co., 1899. 
Price 21s. net. 

It is right that this book, which was first published in Germany some three 
years ago (see our previous review of the original edition), should have been 
translated into English. It is professedly an account of an expedition destined 
to bring some phylogenetic problems nearer their solution ; and as such it would 
be welcome to many English readers who are interested in the " living fossils " 
of the island continent. But it speaks to a wider class than those who trouble 
themselves with questions of affinities between the various groups of animals : 
every one with even a trace of the feelings of a naturalist and every one who 
concerns himself with the character and doings of primitive man is appealed to. 
Semon does not attempt to give details of the scientific results of his expedition, 
for these are appearing in his "Zoologische Forschungsreisen," but he gives a 
fascinating account of his observations of the habits of the animals that attracted 
him to the southern hemisphere, and he adds a lively sketch of the life and 
character both of the scpiatter and the " blackfellow." 

The present writer has only recently returned from the region of Australia 
that is most fully described by Semon, and can heartily testify to the truthful- 
ness of the book. Semon has succeeded in transferring to his pages much of 
the spirit of the bush ; he gives no exaggerated account of life in the wilds, but, 
speaking with full appreciation of his facts, tells simply and happily the story 
of his adventures. 

Much of the interest of such a work might have been lost in a translation, 
but such is not the case here ; and the English edition is thoroughly readable. 
There are, it is true, a few obvious "errors in the rendering, and a number of 
words and phrases with a distinctly foreign colouring ; yet on the whole the 
version is most satisfactory. 

The translation, as well as the method of the author, may be illustrated by 
the account that is given of the Australian opossum (Trichosiims). Semon 
figures this animal, and tells us about its skill in climbing and its nocturnal 
-wanderings in search of insects, eggs, young birds, eucalyptus buds, and sour 
grapes. He describes the kind of trap with which he secured many specimens, 
and in connection with the observation that few of his victims had young in 
their uteri, he digresses to explain the bushman's belief that the young of 
marsupials are conceived on the teat. But when he comes to describe his 
experiences in shooting 'possums, he is even more discursive. Others in like 
position have felt the weird influence of the moon's rays shining through the 

33 l 

332 SOME NEW BOOKS [april 

great gums, but surely no one has moralised on his feelings to such effect. " In 
Middle Europe," says Semon, " the moon during the summer months stands 
particularly low in the heavens, and remains but a short time visible. And 
still this is the very season when the balmy night air suffers us to stay out-of- 
doors to enjoy nocturnal scenery. In the tropics she stands nearly all night in 
the zenith just above us. . . . The towering gum-trees stand white and shining 
as if decked with silver, and almost without casting any shadow. Every line, 
every leaf, shows distinctly, still the penetrating clearness of day is wanting, and 
a mysterious veil lies over the shimmering landscape. Were I a poet I would 
try to depict the impression of this sight in the human mind. Being a 
naturalist, I feel the desire to analyse, and thus I ask myself : What is the 
reason of this wonderful effect, this magic and mysterious element in the moon- 
light landscape, which makes it an object of folk-lore and poet's fancy? The 
answer to this question is near at hand. The effect of moonshine owes its 
peculiar character to the circumstance of its giving light enough on clear nights 
to illuminate a surface directly exposed to its rays. Thus, for instance, an 
open book will be lighted up clearly enough to allow of your reading it. On 
the other hand, however, it is not powerful enough to call forth a perceptible 
brightness when diffused, i.e. indirect/!/ reflected by the sky or the ground. To 
this diffuse light we owe, however, the possibility of recognising in daytime 
those parts of objects not directly exposed to the sun or even those that are 
situated in the deepest shade. The blackness of the shadows in the height of 
daytime is only a seeming one, brought about by contrast. . . . The contrary 
is the case with moonlight. Here the diffuse reflected light is so weak as to 
leave those parts of an object, which are not directly exposed to the rays, in 
darkness, and make their details disappear to our sight. The chief character- 
istic of m